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An open letter to Abbott Labs

Dear Abbott Labs,

I would like to start by saying “Thank You” for making Similac Sensitive.  It is a cornerstone of my child’s meals.  She loves it and is a healthy baby girl.  Sadly, this is not the point of this letter.  The reason I am moved to write to you is there is a horrible flaw in what would be a wonderful product.  The foil liner inside the sealed lid is absolutely a pain in the tail to remove.  It appears to be glued secured welded attached under a lip that protects it’s edges.

the tab in question

I don’t know if you put that pull tab on there as a joke or if it is just poorly designed, but it is absolutely useless!  Of the many, many containers just like the one above I have opened- I have yet to pull that tab and remove the foil liner.  I understand that the foil is to protect the product and I appreciate that.  However, I have to remove it in order to use the product my child so loves and that is no easy task.  When you pull on that tab it simply rips off.  I have tried every manner of removal- from slow and steady to quick and furious.  All with the same outcome- a hole in upper left corner of the container.

After the tab is removed, I can then attempt to remove the rest of the foil that is in a semi-permanently attached state.  I am a pretty handy man.  I can use tools, navigate my way through crib assemble instructions, and unwrap the smallest of nic naks.  However, This ordeal involves razor sharp  foil that has to be manually removed piece by pains taking piece.  The removal of said razor foil is akin to -I don’t know- removing razor wire from a top of a fence while on stilts.  Needles to say this practice is not that easy when you are holding a 5 month old child that wants his bottle something fierce.

Not only is it annoying and difficult- it is dangerous.  I mentioned the razor sharp foil that you have to manually remove…well, I will just show you.

This looks like a well made pull tab...

...crap!

 

ouch

 

 

 

 

 

 

Yep, it cut me as I was trying to remove the foil, after the handy dandy pull tab had ripped free.  I never thought that could happen but, it did.

In conclusion, I would like to request that the design of that foil pull tab be re-looked at, redesigned, or done away with.  Maybe my friends at Babycenter.com can use some baby muscle about this.  It is truly a pain in the…finger.

Sincerely,

-Matt

Post Christmas Reflections

My Wife's Proposed Lighting Plan For Next Year

The tree has been put away or discarded.  The newly untangled lights start their year long re-tangling process.  The plastic Rudolphs, Santas, Jesuses ( I admit I do not know the plural of Jesus.), and plates with Frosty on them are all put into their storage containers and forgotten about by everyone for another 11 months.  Everyone except my wife.

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… and the results are in!

Congrats!

Dethroning”Don’t put the babies in the Microwave” spoke by “person overheard in WalMart”, This year’s BABY TIP OF THE YEAR AWARD goes to…

Babycenter.com Read the rest of this entry

Macy’s Message- Survivor: Nicaragua

Why didn’t they tell me at babycenter.com that my child would have such clearly defined opinions at such an early age?

An Upcoming Dad’s Nightmares

As “daddydom” approaches there are 2 main things that keep me up at night, haunting me like the ghosts of poopytime future.   They are so disgusting to think about that I can’t vocalize my uneasiness about them even to my wife.  There is one underlying commonality to all of them:   the baby’s “fluids”. The baby is going to leak erupt expunge distribute spread her bodily fluids in and on various things.  I know that is a definite aspect of my  future.  Like the soggy, gross sword of Damocles swinging over my head, I can do nothing but wait on its arrival.  HOWEVER, Knowing it is coming is no comfort when thinking about HOW it is going to arrive.

The thought of baby puke on my pants is not near as gut wrenching as… I dont know, maybe this:

Can you imagine that????  I threw up a little in my mouth when I saw that my nightly horror has happened to another soul…on film.   Speaking of throwing up in your mouth, that brings us to the other aspect of baby fear that I cope with.  Here is the other nightmare scenario:

The gag or dry heave is the worst autonomic reaction our bodies have.  It is a warning that our bodies send us to alert us to FOUL THINGS.  This diaper changing thing  is something that my friends at babycenter.com say will happen approximately 8-10 times a day.  That’s just the baby’s bowel movements.  I gag when my dog, a 5.5 lb Yorkie, poops on the floor.  My reaction to Macy’s diaper filling will be YouTube worthy I can only imagine.

Truthfully, I am semi-joking about the “nightmares.”  I am told that I will “get used to it.”  That, right now, does not sound like something I want to do, but something I have to do.  All joking aside, honestly, I want to learn to cope with the vile natural things that go with being a dad.  Even if they are horrendous to think about now.   These, like all things baby, will be learned as I go.

Oh thank you babycenter.com

So, my baby is still not a voting member of our society.  That being true she is still growing.  “How much is she growing?”  you may ask.  Well my answer is “I don’t really know.”  The wife gets vague and cryptic emails from http://www.babycenter.com concerning the baby’s progress.  Here is an exerpt from the latest indecipherable email along with my comments in RED.

Your pregnancy: 37 weeks

How your baby’s growing:

Your baby is now considered “full term,” even though your due date is three weeks away. If you go into labor now, his lungs will likely be mature enough to fully adjust to life outside the womb. That whole “adjust to life outside the womb” part is not some existential conundrum is it? (Some babies need a bit more time, though. So if you’re planning to have a repeat c-section, for example, your practitioner will schedule it for no earlier than 39 weeks unless there’s a medical reason to intervene earlier.)

Your baby weighs 6 1/3 pounds and measures a bit over 19 inches, head to heel (like a stalk of Swiss chard). How helpful is this info?  I can not calculate the BABY TO CHARD Ratio in my head.  I need to take a tape measure to the grocery store again. Many babies have a full head of hair at birth, with locks from 1/2 inch to 1 1/2 inches long. But don’t be surprised if your baby’s hair isn’t the same color as yours. WHAT? Dark-haired couples are sometimes thrown for a loop when their children come out as blonds or redheads, and fair-haired couples have been surprised by Elvis look-alikes. If my child looks like Elvis…We are gonna pimp that dude out! However, According to EVERY Maury Povich guest that I have EVER seen, when a baby dosen’t look like the daddy- IT ISN’T THE DADDY’S BABY! And then, of course, some babies sport only peach fuzz.

It may be harder than ever to get comfortable enough to sleep well at night. UNDERSTATEMENT OF THE UNIVERSE If you can, take it easy through the day My wife take it easy though the day…I laugh at you Baby Center— this may be your last chance to do so for quite a while. Keep monitoring your baby’s movements, too, and let your caregiver know immediately if you notice a decrease. Though her quarters are getting cozy, she should still be as active as before.

While you’re sleeping, you’re likely to have some intense dreams. Like my wife and Corey Haam skateboarding down Santa Monica Boulevard? Anxiety both about labor and about becoming a parent can fuel a lot of strange flights of unconscious fancy. So, your calm demeanor about this pregnancy is really a mask for the “unconscious fancy” swimming beneath your conscious like a bedazzled shark.

This piece of code brought to you by:  Baby GaGa

Fetal development in pregnancy week 37:

It’s the calm before the storm. Changes in your baby’s weight have leveled off with only a few ounces of fat added this week. At this point your baby should weigh in at around 7 lbs and 20 inches (with boys somewhat heavier and longer than girls). NO FOOD REFERENCE???  I AM LOST! Happily, as far as internal organs go, they are now developed enough to function in the outside world although the oh-so-important immune system is still developing and will continue to do so after birth.

My brain hurts…I am off to measure some vegetables…

Click here for more baby posts.


Fear and Clothing in Parenthood

OK, OK, OK, I will admit it.  I am HORRIFIED about being a parent.  Well, not really ABOUT being a parent, but about me being a parent.  There are a few areas of parenting that are making  my tummy grumble.  My “later than usual” age is a concern, my apparent inability to maintain commitments, and my complete mental disconnect on the sizing of baby clothes are concerns that make my supper haunt me in the night.

Commitment

“Parenting is a life long commitment.”  Those words are in every “NEW PARENT” book I have read.  I think the parenting illuminati want that fact to sink in real good so you don’t forget it.  MESSAGE RECEIVED!  Since I have realized that this child will be a permanent facet of my life, some things have began to resurface.  Notably my past failures at honoring commitments.  Those that know me, or those that will openly admit in public to knowing me, would know that commitments are something that I have not been the best at keeping.  Let me elaborate a touch.   I can’t keep two socks together for more than a week.  I have to leave myself notes to feed my fish.  In 1992, I told my mom  that I would help her weed a flower bed.  Hasn’t happened…I hope she forgot.  I signed up for inter mural ultimate frisbee so my friends could actually field 11 players (I was #11)…I completely forgot, never went to one practice and have always wondered why those guys were suck dickheads that semester.

Now I will have a child.  I can’t forget to feed her.  I can’t forget to bathe her.  I can’t forget where she is.  I can’t forget that she can’t tell me what is wrong (at least for a while).  I can’t forget that this commitment is not something that I can casually forget when a motorcycle rides by and my brain has a mini-I WANT THAT-seizure. FINANCIAL ADVICE OF THE DAY *** BUY POST-IT NOTE STOCK *** I am going to need a lot of those little yellow pads.

Age Fears

This is what I am REALLY afraid of.  This hypothetical example of a picture of my daughter and I in the upcoming years.  I am currently 34 years old.  Macy and I will have a LARGE generation gap between us.  You think I am blowing it out of proportion? For those mathematically challenged here is a cheat sheet for ya.  Lets look at exactly how bad its gonna be.

Macy’s Age                                  My Age                                     My Situation

o                                                            34                                       All is under control

10                                                          44                                       1st knee replacement

20                                                          54                                       3rd knee replacement

30                                                          64                                        Looking for my teeth

40                                                           74                                Yelling at “kids” on the lawn

50                                                            84                               (I can’t think this far ahead)

Ya get it now?  I am going to be an out of touch codger when she is 18-30.  OMG I need to hire a large orangutan to follow her around and assault anyone who approaches her during my declining years.

ANYONE KNOW A GOOD PRIMATE ADOPTION AGENCY?

Understanding Baby Clothes

FYI future dads: Children’s clothes are not sized like everything else.  S, M, L, XL, and XXL do not apply to children’s clothes.  You need to take a class on this.  I am not even kidding!  For starters memorize this:

Age/Size Weight Length Bootie/Shoe Size Sock Size
Newborn Up to 7 lbs Up to 17″ N/A N/A
Up to 3 Months 7-12 lbs 17-23″ 3 Up to 6 Months
3-6 Months 12-17 lbs 23-27″ 4 Up to 6 Months
6-12 Months 17-22 lbs 27-29″ 5 6-12 Months
12-18 Months 22-27 lbs 29-31″ 6 12-24 Months
18-24 Months 27-30 lbs 31-33″ 7 12-24 Months

That chart will get you through the start but the Toddler Years have a system all to themselves. Here are some lines from other websites that are supposed to help decode this mess:

“Up until the age of 24 months, if an item

is labeled “12 months” or “18 months” without an age range, translate it to mean “9-12” or “12-18” months. A size chart is

always more accurate than an

age range in determining the best fit for your child, but when there is no size chart, or even an age range, always select one size up from your child’s current age.”

Did you get that tip?  Easy to understand huh?  Here is another nugget of wisdom (* I DID NOT MAKE THIS UP):

The overlap between Toddler (2T, 3T, 4T, 5T) and Child (2, 3, 4, 5, 6)

Does this fit?

sizes is a little confusing, particularly because different brands have different criteria for distinguishing between the two size types:

- Some Toddler sizes are roomier in the bottom to accommodate diapers

- Some Child sizes are narrower and longer (Size charts will indicate this by showing a similar weight range but larger height range than the corresponding Toddler size)

- Some Child sizes are the exact same size as their Toddler counterparts, but have a different cut and style

SEE!! There is no consistent measure for baby’s clothes.  OMG, I am sooo screwed!

If you don’t believe me by now…Here is one last thought taken from a well respected parenting website.

“Buying baby clothes is a lot like playing the lottery; you hedge your bets on a number, and hope it’s the right one.”

Thank god my wife is smart.

A Future Father Speaks

So, I finished the my latest HOW TO BE A DAD book recently.  It was entitled “The Expectant Father”  This book didn’t freak me out with hundreds of advanced female anatomy diagrams, pregnancy warning signs, stats on SIDS, or how to care for an infected episiotomy incision (that was actually covered in another book).

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