November 26, 2008: Changing of the Guard

Dominica is now 40 weeks and 5 days pregnant…

Dominica got practically no sleep at all last night.  She has been having contractions fairly regularly but not enough to send her to the hospital with the “baby coming any minute” but often enough to keep her from sleeping.  I got some sleep but not a lot.  It was a long night.  I don’t think that Oreo got too much sleep either.

We got up and went to Pastel’s for breakfast.  We stopped by GameStop.  Dominica is on a constant hunt for stuff to do while she is stuck in labor.  She looked around for PlayStation Portable (PSP) games that she might be interested but just couldn’t find anything at all that looks interesting.  The lineup of games for the PSP still remains incredibly weak.  Just a handful of interesting games almost all covering the same ground as each other.  She ended up picking up a Nancy Drew game and a Mahjong game for the Nintendo DS instead.

We got home and saw dad for about half an hour before he left for his long drive back home.  His plan, which is, of course, subject to change, is to get home this afternoon and to return when the weather permits early next week around Monday or Tuesday.  Dominica’s parents are coming this afternoon or evening and are probably staying until Sunday night.

At twelve thirty I drove Dominica downtown to the clinic for her appointment with her midwife to get a status and another check on how everything is going.  Her appointment was supposed to be at a quarter until one.  At ten after one she called to let me know that she was stuck not getting in to see a midwife until two but, luckily, she had a book with her so it wasn’t worth running home and back down.

I had some time while Dominica was at her doctor’s appointment and while work was really slow to do some organizing so I did some video game “housecleaning” and updated my video game lists and posted new ones, as everyone has probably seen.  You can only have so many video games so using SGL as a repository for them works really well.  It also makes it extremely easy for other people to look up what games I have in case they want to play something.  I figure that it was also be interesting for my child and potentially for future generations to look back and see what games I played.

While Dominica was at her midwife appointment I got a chance to do some cleaning.  I did the dishes and finished unpacking another box from the dining room and assembled the lamp that has been in the basement waiting for someone to take an interest in it.  I also figured out where the Nintendo DS and Kodak digicam chargers were – sitting on the dining room floor!  They were in the handful of eletrical cables that I had set aside as “most haves” for right away and then a box had been set on top of them so we had lost them.  Now we have them and know where they are.

I picked Dominica up around three thirty and brought her home.  As we arrived at the house her two books, the last two of the Twilight series, arrived at the house.  She has been desperately looking for these to arrive before she has to go to the hospital because she wants to be able to read them while in the hospital.

It is the day before a major holiday so the exchange closed early today.  The afternoon was very slow at the office which was good because everyone was trying to leave early.  I managed to put in pretty much a full day covering all kinds of stuff even with my out of office assistant turned on.  Thankfully tomorrow is a holiday.

Since things were so slow as the afternoon wore on and since Dominica really wasn’t up to doing anything but sitting in the living room reading her book “New Moon” I got a chance to play about an hour or possibly two of Fable 2 on the XBOX 360.  This is the first that I have had a chance to play either the 360 or the PS3 at all in about a week.  It was a nice break.

After Dominica’s midwife appointment this afternoon she pretty much immediately started having contractions.  Probably the stress of the travel and the appointment kicked things into gear.  They were pretty irregular until her parents arrived around sixish and then they started coming pretty frequently and more or less regularly.

For dinner, Dominica’s father and I drove over to the Beach Shopping Center and got Italian take out from Nonna’s (hopefully I got the name correct) and brought it back to the house.  Dominica’s parents have not yet seen that part of town and did not know where the hospital or the shopping center (with the grocery store) were so we figured that taking the drive would be a good idea now.

After dinner it was an evening of waiting.  The contractions continued to get more frequent and more regular.  I kept checking in with the office until ten o’clock when I signed out.  With tomorrow being Thanksgiving there is very little to do tonight.

Katie posted that gas in New Jersey at WaWa was down to $1.57 per gallon tonight.  I can’t remember seeing gas that cheap since I was first working in South Carolina around 2001.  Once, when traveling through Georgia, in 2001 or 2002 I saw gas for $.99.  Gas was over $2 when I was born in 1976 since I was born during the high fuel priced post-OPEC embargo years.  Gas was in between $1.50 and $2 for almost all of my childhood all through the 80s and 90s and had just one or two major dips around 1999 and 2002 (when I saw the Georgia price.)  Since then the prices have skyrocketed.

Now they are back down to levels similar to those seen when I was ten years old – except when you adjust for inflation the gas today is practically free.  When adjusted for inflation, fuel today is the cheapest that it has been for about thirty-five years and maybe for much longer than that.  From looking at the charts and price adjustments on Wikipedia, it is very clear that today’s petroleum in the United States is only a fraction fo the cost that it has ever been since at least 1919!  Our current price is about half of what it was in 1919 in adjusted dollars.  It is amazing that after having gone through two or three years of fuel price panic to now be living in a nation of such fuel surplus.  Now everyone is thinking about fuel costs all of the time even though we have never needed to think about it so little.

At a quarter till eleven Dominica decided that she was exhausted and that it would be better to attempt to get some sleep than to try to stay up until the baby comes.  Her parents decided to stay up for a little while watching shows on Hulu and Netflix over PlayOn on the PS3.  Her dad really likes that service.  They are all set up to sleep in the nursery.  There is an airmattress all blown up and ready in there.

We discovered a crack in the crib tonight so when we get back from the hospital we will need to deal with getting that front piece replaced.  One more thing that needs my attention.  🙁

Well November 26th is over and no baby today.  With the intensity and frequency of Dominica’s contractions there is no way that this is going to last for very much longer.  We were pretty sure that we were going to be going to the hospital tonight and that is still possible but right now it is looking a bit more like it is going to be in the morning.

Keep a look out on the Twitter feed for the latest updates as they happen!

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