Saturday, May 31, 2008

At the Hospital Again

2AM - Things I'm Learning - Tips for Guys in the Delivery Room
1. Shut Up - Don't talk if you can help it. When she's going through contractions she doesn't want to hear anything, and probably can't say anything. She'll talk when she's ready to, then be prepared to listen.
2. Don't Touch Her - Unless she asks you to, then when she says stop, STOP!
3. Ice Chips - Know where to get them and get them frequently.
4. Coach her Breathing. This breaks rule number 1, but you'll know when to use it. "In through the nose and out through your mouth." Watch the monitor and tell her when the contraction starts going down. Tell her she's doing great.
5. The Puke Bucket. Your new job is keeper of the puke bucket, know where it is and keep it close by, when you go for walks with her in the hall, bring it with you. Rinse it out and have it ready.

We had a little break tonight. Contractions slowed down significantly around midnight and we both got about an hour or so of sleep. It's about 2:45AM now and the contractions have kicked in again. She's in a lot of pain, but doing well considering...

10PM - Prodromal Labor - could last for days, 26 hours so far...I think I'll just write tomorrow, this is really frustrating and we're both exhausted. I feel helpless and useless just sitting there watching her in pain.

7PM - 2cm now, walked around the halls for a bit. Looks like we may be staying at the hospital.

- We're at the hospital again. The ride over was pretty rough, I think she felt every bump. Genevieve's on the monitor now and still having contractions, although they seem to have subsided (okay, that was a big one...) I just had to get up and help her on that one. Maybe they haven't subsided. Anyway, she seems more comfortable here than at home, so I'm hoping that the doctor decides to keep her here. Unbelievably, she's still only at 1cm, so hopefully something happens soon. The nurses are coming back to check in a bit, then we may have her get up and walk around. By the way, Genevieve is doing this without pain medication, and and does not want an epidural, so I have to hand it to her, she's hanging in there like a trooper.

At The Hospital/Back at Home

***2:45PM - Heading back to the hospital***

***2PM Calling the doctor again, contractions are getting closer together, about 3 min. apart and 'sharper' as Genevieve says. 

***12PM - More of the same. Contractions are farther apart, but really intense. She's in a lot of pain and really uncomfortable. We're going on 16 hours now since this all started. This morning has been brutal. 

***8AM - Still in labor at home, it's been a really rough night. I'm probably not going to post for a few hours, not until we're leaving for the hospital again.***

***4AM - We're back at home. This labor thing is ten times worse than I imagined. She was throwing up a lot in the car on the way to the hospital, then in the hospital. The nurse said this was a normal response to pain. The doctor doesn't want Gen to come back until the contractions get worse. This is because even after hours of labor she's still only at 1cm and there needs to be more progress. I'm here with her but feel completely useless. She doesn't want to hear me chanting breathing advice, so I'm just standing by quietly with water and ice chips. For someone who pulls all-nighters quite a bit, I'm already exhausted from all of the excitement. The nurse seems to think we'll be back at the hospital later today. The last few hours have been pretty rough.

*** 2AM The doctor's going to see Genevieve at 2:30AM to determine whether we're going to stay or go home. I can't imagine us getting sent home with Gen having contractions like this, but that's exactly what may happen. Looks like we're in for a long night.***

Friday, May 30, 2008

Here We Go


*** 11:30PM Major Contractions for the last hour, 2nd call to doctor, they said to wait until contractions are closer, Gen's been getting sick, contractions have been averaging 3 to 4 mins apart, sometimes longer, very intense ***

***10PM - The last 2 hours have been rather intense with contractions occurring nearly every 5 minutes. We called the doctor, but they said to wait, that it may be false labor. I don't think it is, and I know Genevieve certainly doesn't think it is. I'm pretty sure that we're in the early stages of true labor. I've been timing the contractions and they seem to be getting closer and more intense. We'll give the doctor a call again in a little while. I think we're going to the hospital tonight. The baby is kicking really hard, I think he's getting uncomfortable in there. Genevieve is in a lot of pain right now, so I'm going to try and stay with her. I don't know when the next time I'll get to write, but stay tuned and check in throughout the night if you're still up. I'll try to write updates when possible.***

Contraction Action

***8PM Contractions started off slowly around 3PM this afternoon and have been steadily getting more intense, so much so that I've been ordered to pack the car. Looks like we may be going to the hospital sometime tonight.***

Calm Before the Storm?

Man, I thought for sure we'd be going to the hospital today! I wish I had the big news for you today! Things were brewing last night, for sure. Genevieve was either having Braxton Hicks contractions or false labor last night. I went to sleep convinced that we were going to be heading to the hospital today, and that we'd have the baby by Thursday night, but alas, that is not the case. In fact, things have actually calmed down again. The baby is still really active. I mean, you can feel his feet, legs, and body moving around when you touch Genevieve's belly, he's really solid and strong. I still have my hopes set on this weekend. I think there's still a real good chance that Genevieve will go into actual labor before we have to induce on Monday night. So we're keeping our fingers crossed and hoping he'll decide to be born this weekend. My mom is hoping for May 31st, so he'd have the same birthday as his great-grandmother. We'll see, we have our fingers crossed.

This photo is from our first wedding anniversary, October 1st, 2007. Genevieve and I went to Mayfield Park in Austin just to spend some time together. Little did I know, that a few moments after I took this photo, that she was going to give me the news, that she was pregnant. You can see it in her face in the photo, she had something to tell me. It was a really great moment, one that I'll never forget. Looking at this photo, it seems forever ago that we were living in Austin. (If you click on the photo, you get a ginormous version.)

These photos were from September 28th at our apartment complex in Austin. We were talking on this day about wanting to have a baby together and we were both sort of getting disillusioned with how little we were getting paid in Austin. We both left good paying jobs at home, and were starting to question our decision to move there. I think this was here that we talked for the first time about the possibility of leaving Austin just a few short months after moving there. Once we knew we were having a baby, we knew we had to move back home.
***1:45AM, just got back from late night trip to the supermarket to buy ice cream and ring dings***
***3:00PM, some minor contractions have started again***

Thursday, May 29, 2008


Yes folks, it looks like things are starting to happen. If I were to compare it to seismic activity, I would say we've been at 0.0 on the Richter Scale for the last few weeks, but we've had a couple of 2.0 moments Tuesday and Wednesday night, which leads me to believe we are getting close maybe in the 24-48 hour range. As I'm writing this, Genevieve is upstairs packing the suitcase for the hospital and nesting like crazy. The bedroom is laid out like a fully functioning nursery, ready for the baby's arrival. I spent some time this evening downloading some lullabies for the iPod. The Rockabye Baby albums are great. We downloaded the MP3s of Radiohead tunes from Amazon. Check out some of the other albums they have, they're really neat. Click on this for a listen:

Metallica - Master of Puppets MP3

I've been getting a lot of text messages asking if the baby's here yet...which I haven't responded to yet. So if you're one of those people, I'm sorry! I'll text back the moment he's born. I'm hoping to update this blog while I'm at the hospital, but I don't know how hairy the situation is going to be there, so I'll see what I can do.

3:30AM - Genevieve's not feeling well, so we're going to bed. I'm wide awake, but I'm going to try and get some sleep incase Thursday's the day.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Aunt Aggie

Sad news tonight from England. My Aunt Aggie passed away this evening. I think you'd be hard pressed to find a kinder, gentler, more loving person. I'm really glad we got to see her on our Honeymoon in England back in October 2006. She came to our "Wedding Party" at my cousin's house in Liverpool. I'm happy that Genevieve had a chance to meet her, she got to spend a lot of time talking with her that evening, and we were left with happy memories of the last time we saw her. She will be missed by all who had the pleasure of knowing her, especially my Mom.

Memorial Day weekend has come and gone, as well as Genevieve's due date, and it doesn't seem like we're that much closer to having the baby. We went to the doctor this morning and she said that if Genevieve doesn't have the baby by this weekend, we'll be going to the hospital on the night of Monday, June 2nd to induce labor, which means that the baby would likely be born on June 3rd.

Sunday, May 25, 2008

Due Date

So what do ya think? Genevieve's ready to go, or what? Our due date is finally here, and considering the fact that about 95% of women don't deliver on their due date, and that due dates can be as much as 2 weeks off, one things for sure, Genevieve looks like she's ready. I mean, how much bigger can that baby bump get? There's no sign of labor as of today, but we're hoping that things will change soon. We watched "The Happiest Baby" DVD last night. I have to say, it was pretty mind blowing to see how easily Dr. Karp got these babies to stop crying. He just wraps 'em up, turns them on their side, and starts shushing them. The baby's expression changes instantly, just totally quiet and relaxed. I have to laugh, because I wonder if this will actually work when it's my turn to try it. 

I spent most of the afternoon trying to install the car seat base. Of course, being a guy, there's two things I never need; directions or instructions. So after about an hour of trial and error, I finally gave in and had Genevieve print out the directions from the company website, 30 pages by the way. The directions just added to the confusion. Baby car seats are totally uncharted territory for me, but I think I figured it out. It's a good thing our car already came with the LATCH System, something new I learned about today. So the car seat is in there, secure, just waiting for a baby to take home.   

Saturday, May 24, 2008

1 Day To Go!

We went out to Babies 'R' Us last night and got all of the last minute items we needed; bottles, diapers, wipes, more diapers, blankets, etc. We're all ready to go. Today we just relaxed, made some space in the bedroom and got everything nice and clean. Genevieve's heading out tonight to get the birth announcements. She's hoping it'll be tonight, but I'm not so sure because she hasn't had any big contractions yet. I'm sure that could all change at any minute, but for right now, all is quiet.

Friday, May 23, 2008

Memorial Day/Labor Day Weekend

***Okay, so if you read this earlier, you'll know that I'm constantly getting Memorial Day and Labor Day confused. I'm not sure why this happens, but I've finally got it straightened out.***

This Memorial Day weekend could wind up being more like 'Labor Day' for us. Genevieve is due this Sunday, (40 weeks,) I can't believe that it's here. I look at our baby ticker on the right side of our blog and I see it's down to 2 days. I remember when that thing said something like 237 days, it's crazy how time flies, but yet these last few days seem to be crawling. We went to the doctor this morning and found out that Genevieve is not any closer than she was a few days ago, or last week for that matter. Her next appointment is on Tuesday, and if she hasn't had the baby by then, they want us to pick a day to induce labor. They don't want Genevieve to go more than a week past her due date. She's not crazy about the idea of labor being induced, because she wants everything to happen naturally. We're hoping that things change this weekend, maybe she'll go into labor on her own. Maybe I could take her to Six Flags this weekend and we could go on Kingda Ka, maybe that would induce labor!

I've just been doing more last minute preparations today. I bought a Maxi-Cosi Mico car seat yesterday and I was in my car trying to figure out how to hook it up. I think I need instructions, it looks more complicated than I thought. I also picked up a wireless USB modem for my laptop yesterday. It's great, I'm outside in the backyard with the right now typing this. I'll be able to get wireless internet anywhere now as long as there's a cell tower. It'll be great for when I'm working in New York so I don't have to drive around looking for a wireless signal that isn't password protected. The weather's great today, really sunny and in the 70s, so it's a really great day to be outside. I'm really excited about the baby coming, but nervous about the delivery room. I hope Genevieve's okay and doesn't have too

hard of a time. The book "Happiest Baby" arrived at the house today, so Gen will be really happy about that. I think the book teaches you about swaddling techniques, and how to get the baby to stop crying. I thought you just yell and scream to get the baby to stop crying, maybe I'm just old school. Our bags are packed and our cars are gassed up and ready to go should we have to leave for the hospital. I'll post pictures from today later tonight.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

4 Days To Go

Well, there's 4 days to go. Genevieve and I spent most of last evening doing last minute organizing, laundry, and just trying to get whatever we can ready for the baby's arrival. I'm just sitting here shaking my head trying to figure out what it's going to be like in that delivery room. I hope Gen's going to be okay. She's been on me for the last couple of days to read this book, "The Bradley Way," but I've been dragging my feet a little. Maybe it's the graphic photos in there from the 1970s or the husband in short shorts with a creepy moustache. I have to get down to business today and read that book. If were going to do this the 'Natural Way," I'm going to have to know what the heck is going on. Wish me luck.

2:45AM - I've just been asked to bake tortilla chips with cheese and ranch dressing on top...

The Recipe: Pete & Genevieve's Tortilla Chips
  1. Place 'Tostitos Restaurant Style Tortilla Chips' on a baking sheet
  2. Preheat oven to 350 degrees
  3. Grate white cheddar cheese generously over chips
  4. Add 'Hidden Valley Ranch' Ranch Dressing (squirt bottle works best)
  5. Add Mt. Olive Jalapenos if desired.
  6. Cook for 10 minutes at 350 degrees or until cheese is melted and tips of chips brown.

Enjoy! Then make more!

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Your Vote Counts

This election year, I'm counting on your vote. Vote which date you think our baby will be born. With just 5 days to go until the due date, your vote couldn't be more important. You can vote in the column on the right hand side. My only suggestion would be not to vote for May 19th, because that was yesterday, and you will lose. The winner gets nothing more than bragging rights, and the satisfaction of knowing that they have demonstrated superior guessing abilities over all others. So call on all of your psychic and clairvoyant abilities. Weigh in whatever factors you like, (i.e. superstition, full moon, numerology, tides, etc.) Or just take a wild, uneducated guess. Thank you for exercising your right as an American citizen. Vote for Baby Burke, he's depending on you.

Sunday, May 18, 2008

Genevieve's Birthday

Today was Genevieve's birthday, and it looks like we'll be having separate birthday parties for Mom and Baby next year. No baby today, although I have a feeling we're getting close. He does seem to be moving further down and Genevieve's getting pretty uncomfortable. The day started out with some nasty weather, rain and thunderstorms, but we had a good day anyway. She was really happy with the bassinet, so score one for me on that one. You can see all of the birthday photos here. and more photos of Genvieve here.

Only 7 days left until the due date (May 25th,) and I'm starting to get anxious. I can hardly sleep at night, and I'm sure that it's nothing compared to what's coming. It's a combination of excitement, anticipation, and the dread of not knowing what to do. The books I'm reading this week are "Natural Childbirth the Bradley Way" and "The Baby Owner's Manual," which appears to be directed towards dads. The book refers to changing a diaper as, "installing a diaper," which seems to appeal to dad-like sensibilities. The illustrations are simple, and easy to understand. So I'm looking forward to see what type of knowledge I can pick up with that.

Last Minute Preparations

Tomorrow, (Sunday,) is Genevieve's Birthday. She doesn't know it yet, but I got her the Orbit Baby Bassinet. It goes with the Orbit Infant Stroller System, which we haven't purchased yet, but will soon. (You can click on the photos, they should be functioning links.)

We finished painting the crib today. We had to use this "Mythic" super safe latex paint that's supposed to be super safe for babies and other humans as well. We painted the crib "Baltic Black," which is ironic, because it's about the whitest paint you've ever seen.

With only a few days left until the due date, we've only got a few things left on the checklist. Finish packing for the hospital, fill both cars with gas, (yikes, $4 per gallon,) and get all the cameras, phones, and applicable chargers ready. We've already driven the route to the hospital a few times and taken a hospital tour. (Paoli Hospital, PA) So we're ready to go, just waiting for baby to tell us when it's time!

I started working out at the gym again after talking about it for what seems like years now. I was getting way out of shape, and I want to be in top form if I'm going to be carrying a baby around with all the necessary baby paraphernalia. So I've returned to the gym, and recommissioned my mountain bike, which lay dormant with two flat tires since we returned from Austin. The problem is, I've been away from regular workouts for so long, that I'm in extreme pain for days after working out. We're not even talking about heavy weight here, I'm just doing all the regular exercises. I'm not killing myself or over doing it, it just seems to hurt more than I ever remember. I did arm curls for my biceps two days ago and I can barely move my arms now. From what I've read online, this is supposed to be the 'good' kind of pain. I try not to complain about it to Genevieve, after all, she is carrying our baby. I don't think I'm gonna get much sympathy.

Friday, May 16, 2008

9 Days to Go

So, from what I understand, only about 5% of women deliver on their due date. With this being our first, there's a good chance he'll be born after the due date. We're going to the doctor today to find out how close we are to having this baby. I plan on being there in the delivery room. I wasn't sure about this initially, because I didn't know if I would just be in the way, or what. Plus I have a history of fainting in hospital situations, so I was a little concerned about that. The last thing you want to have to worry about is your husband passed out on the floor while your about to deliver a baby. So I took some birthing classes with Genevieve, and I feel better about the whole thing now.

I can't believe we're down to single digit days, but October, when we found out about the baby, seems so long ago. So much has happened since then. Packing up our apartment in Austin, having all of our stuff sent back and put it in storage. Going back to work on commercials in New York and working as many days as I physically could. There were quite a few days when I was working so many hours that I just slept in the car and then went right back to work. There was one stretch where I worked 51 hours straight without sleep. It's amazing how this baby motivated me. Things have settled down now, and I'm not having to work such ridiculous hours.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Sanding the Crib

Today was all about sanding. I spent all day sanding the baby's crib by hand. I ran out to Ace Hardware late morning and picked up some sandpaper and got to work. I must have been out there for 4 or 5 hours just sanding away. Tomorrow I'll just do some touch up sanding, then paint it. I've been home for a while now. Work has slowed for some reason, so I've just been hanging out with Genevieve, going to all her doctor's visits with her, and trying to get ready for the baby's arrival. We've been watching more TV than we're used to. Lots of "Cops" reruns, "The First 48" on A&E has become a favorite of mine recently. There's not a lot to do until baby gets here, so we're just in a holding pattern. The calm before the storm so to speak. Here's some flower photos Genevieve took today in the Lambert's garden.

Click on this photo for a larger version, you can see ants in almost every flower.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Slider Chair

Today, we took a ride up to Moonachie, NJ to the Room & Board distribution center to pick up our slider chair. The trip was 111 miles in each direction in my gas loving Durango. Kind of a long haul, but we had a nice ride, go to spend some time together and talk about the next couple of weeks. We couldn't have asked for better weather today, sunny and in the 70s, nearly cloudless sky. We listened to the iTunes playlist we put together for the baby. Mostly sleep inducing tunes from Radiohead, The Beatles, Sigur Ros, and many others. Hopefully, they'll help put baby to sleep, it nearly put me to sleep on the way home, that's for sure. The baby is getting big, there's no doubt about it. On the way home, I could see and feel his foot sticking through Gen's belly. He's really active. I had no idea babies were so active, you can clearly see him moving around in there. This week has been about last minute preparations, getting everything set up for the baby. The shower was great and everyone was real generous with their gifts, so there's not a lot left for us to get. Just a few things here and there.

I took this photo today, I hope you can make out the shadows. I tinted it blue in Picasa.

Monday, May 12, 2008


Today was a waiting day. We just waited around, there was nothing else to do. It was real miserable out. A mid-May Nor'easter hammered us and it rained all day. The temperature never got above the mid 40s. Even though there was a ton of things I could have done, I just couldn't get motivated. I was in a gloomy state of mind. It was a day of naps and more naps, me and Genevieve alternating with the dogs. I've been pacing, waiting for the phone to ring for work, finally, today it did. I find out more about the gig tomorrow. I'm starting to notice strange things now, like when I pick up milk at the store, the expiration date is past Genevieve's due date. May 25th used to seem so far away, now, it's practically here. Gen's reading books about childbirth and I'm reading "Cesar's Way," on how to train dogs. I guess I should get with the program and read some more about what to expect in the delivery room. Tomorrow, we're going to pick up our 'slider' chair from the Room & Board warehouse in NJ. Should be an all day thing, but at least the weather's supposed to be nice.

Less Than 2 Weeks

It's hard to believe, but we're less than two weeks away from our little boy being here. A journey that started 8 1/2 months ago in Austin has almost come to and end, but when baby's here, a whole new journey begins. I can't even wrap my head around it yet. I'm going to be a dad in less than two weeks! Amazing. I'm pretty much equal parts nervous and excited. Someone asked me this weekend if we were 'ready,' and I likened it to preparing for a hurricane. Once you've bought all of the necessary survival items and done all the preparations you can, all you can do is wait. That's pretty much where we're at right now. Geneveive's doing great, the baby is fine, we're just sort of in the waiting stage. I know it's going to be a life changing experience, but I guess 'ready' is something you can only quantify in retrospect. I guess I can tell you whether or not I was ready a few months from now, maybe even a few years from now. At any rate, we're both really excited and looking forward to his arrival.

Photos taken Saturday, May 10th at Shari's 50th Birthday party in Cream Ridge, NJ and at Genevieve's Shower, Sunday, May 4th in Drexel Hill, PA

Friday, May 9, 2008

8 1/2 Months!

Photos taken May 7th, 2008.
Went to the doctor this morning. Gen is at 37 weeks now. The doctor estimated that the baby weighs about 6 lbs 12oz as of now, and she expects him to be around 8lbs at birth.

Photos from March

Here's some photos we shot in March, when Genevieve was 7 months pregnant.

Genevieve's point of view... we played the baby music by putting my headphones on Genevieve's belly.

We played "Here, There, and Everywhere," and "Across the Universe," by the Beatles.
You can click on the photos to get a GIGANTIC version.

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Getting Going

Yeah, so I'm a little slow getting this thing going, but I'll be posting a lot soon. This blog will be mostly for family checking in on how our new baby is doing. Genevieve and I expecting our first child, a baby boy around May 25th 2008. I wanted to have some kind of running record for the family, and eventually, for the baby himself. I'll be posting photos, updates, etc.

So the plan is, to do this blog every day leading up to the day the baby is born. I'll have my computer with me in the hospital, and I'll be able to post photos and the announcement rather quickly. Once Genevieve and the baby are doing okay of course, and providing that I don't pass out.

I guess I could start with some pictures of me and Genevieve from our first date in 2001. We met in October of 2000 when I was on tour with Hanson. Genevieve was working at the Tower Theatre in Philly on the day we met. We decided to stay in touch and went on our first date several months later, in May 2001. (If the baby were to be born on May 26th, it would be exactly 7 years from our first date!) Just a week after our first date, Genevieve had to leave for a job on the Backstreet Boys tour.

I'll probably edit this later, just getting the hang of posting photos, paragraph spacing, etc.