Introducing Elliot Adrian Snader

We’re really excited to finally be able to meet the little bun in the oven that Janice has been working on for the last nine months! Just like an actual bun in the oven, you have to wait until a baby is cooked before you can properly enjoy it. That wait can seem a little unbearable and unlike an actual oven, Janice doesn’t have a glass window where we could peek in from time to time to see how things were going. Fortunately the midwifes did have an ultrasound doohickey, which is kind of like a window except with more knobs and jelly and what you see is all pixelated and requires special interpretation to know what you’re looking at. You’ll see what looks like a flock of bees being sucked into a vacuum cleaner. “That’s the head!” The midwife will say. You’ll raise your eyebrows and lift the corners of your closed mouth, bemused at the miracle before you. Then, so the midwife knows your involved, you’ll say something smart like, “Oh yes, I believe that’s where the brain is located.”

They smile, then hand you an invoice. “That’s $200 please.”

On April 12 the waiting came to an end and at 5:50 am we met Elliot face to face! He’s much louder in person than he is in the ultrasound, I must say. Still, we were tickled pink! Well, I was. Janice felt more trampled than tickled but we’re both super grateful that we have a healthy baby boy. Elliot Adrian weighed 7 pounds, 10 ounces at birth and measured 20 inches long.


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Now, the work doesn’t stop once your wife is done with labor. In fact, if you’re a man, that’s when your work starts! For one thing, your wife becomes very hormonal, which isn’t her fault, really, it’s just God’s way of making up for your lack of effort during childbirth.

The other day I innocently wandered into the living room and was met with a glare from Janice.

“Careful where you point that glare, you’ll start the trailer on fire!” I warned.

“Good!” she said. She was sitting in the recliner rocking Elliot. “There’s a fly flying around!” She roared. There was steam whistling from her ears. “I’m going to kill that thing and I’ll burn this trailer to the ground if that’s what it takes to get the job done. It bugged me all night.”

“You were out here all night?”

“YEEEES!!”

“Hold on honey, I got just the thing! You could use my 9mm that way you don’t have to get out of your seat to kill flies.” Then, like an adult, my responsibilities kicked in. “What am I thinking? A fly is hard to hit. You would probably waste all kinds of ammo.”

“Yes honey, you’re being absurd,” Janice says, “It’d be far better to use a shotgun!” She pauses. “On second thought, the shooting will wake the baby. Grab the flyswatter!”

I go to the kitchen to grab the flyswatter, come back into the living room, and hand Janice the weapon. She begins sobbing like a baby.

“What’s wrong, honey?” I asked, perplexed. Twenty seconds ago I was fearing for my life. Now I’m tenderly rubbing her shoulders.

“I can’t kill the poor thing!” She sobs, her eyes welling up. “He probably has a family! He’s just trying to make ends meet.”

I stand there for a minute, trying to rationally connect the two extremes. “I… uh… mmm. Let me get you some chocolate.”


Related: Seven, Serious, No-nonsense Tips for First Time Parents


Truth be told, Adi is the one keeping us up all night. She’s not handling the transition to big sister very well. She’s a very touchy-feely kind of person and craves one-on-one time. She’s no longer getting it because there’s this pesky newborn in the way so in the middle of the night she’ll decide that she wants to snuggle with mom and dad in their bed. I’m too tired at 2 am to be the strict disciplinarian that I usually am and so I let her jump in bed. Of course, when Adi snuggles, she snuggles you to death. She plays with your elbows, she pinches your neck, she kicks you in the back, and she loves hugging your arm. And if your arm isn’t in the right position, she fights hard to get it exactly where she wants it – doesn’t matter if that means your arm is broken in half and folded behind your head. And if you’re not willing to break your arm in half and fold it behind your head, she throws a fit. She gets evicted from the bed frequently, which erupts into a big scene, which wakes everyone up, and makes a kind, loving marriage harder to achieve. It also makes daddy quite hormonal.

Another problem I’ve run into now that we have two kids producing dirty diapers at an alarming rate, is diaper avalanches. Since it’s spring, I shut down the outdoor furnace. The outdoor furnace works great for burning diapers because diapers are typically soaked full of pee (that’s their job, after all) and it takes a lot of heat to dry them out and burn them. Trash fires do not burn diapers well so you’re left with a half burnt pile of diapers. We’re about two months from moving to Ohio (Lord willing) and so I don’t feel like signing up for trash service. So now when we go grocery shopping, we pick up some things and discreetly drop some things off in the store’s dumpster. So if I get arrested please don’t make terrible assumptions; just know it’s probably from unlicensed use of Aldi’s dumpster.

It’s life I guess.

As bad as I make it sound, we’re actually really blessed! I have a great wife, two great kids, and God has been blessing our support raising efforts. He is making a way where I thought there was none. Officially, as of April 19, 2019, we are 83.79% of the way to our goal. Unofficially (which includes verbal commitments that didn’t hit the bank yet), we’re at the 94% mark but I caution you not to get up and dance around. It’s not over until it’s over but I know what you’re thinking; Maybe he’ll finally stop asking for money on every blog. We hope to be fully funded by the end of May and moving in June and as long as we’re fully funded, I hope to not be harping about it all the time. Support raising was a necessary process and we learned very important things along the way. I wouldn’t change the process for the world. However, I feel it’s time to start. It’s time to go. It’s time for the next step. It’s time to do this and we’re so close! Thank you for following our journey!

Until next time,

Josh

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