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According to our pediatrician, we’ve got a healthy baby on our hands:

  • Weight, 20 lbs. 11 oz.
  • Height, 30 in.
  • Head circumference, an inch bigger than last time

All three of those stats are greater than the 99th percentile. Of course, I know that doesn’t mean anything except that the child is outgrowing her clothes faster than people are giving her new ones (which is pretty fast).


Every year, in mid-June, Vogel State Park in north Georgia is taken over for an entire week by 50 or 60 Burnses from all over the country. It’s the Burns Family Reunion, and this was Jackie’s first experience with Katie’s great uncles and aunts, second cousins, third cousins, sixth cousins twice removed, and so on. She had a blast.

Before we left for Georgia, I didn’t think the week with Katie’s extended family would matter much to a six-month old baby. Boy, was I wrong. Jackie clung to her parents and grandparents the first couple of days, but after being passed around, cuddled, talked to, doted on, and welcomed by every member of Katie’s family for the first forty-eight hours, the child really started to get into it. A child psychologist or developmental expert could have written a qualitative research paper on Jackie’s transformation. She metamorphosed from shy to soaking-it-all-in. By the end of the week, she didn’t care who held her as long as they gave her full attention and praise.

Thanks to Ben and Janet for paying for the Jones family cabin and to Janet for looking after Jackie every night! Thanks to the entire Burns clan for welcoming its newest member!

Here is a slew of pictures from the week:

Since our last update, Jackie has mastered bouncing and parent-assisted swimming. She’s also cut one bona fide tooth and another is about to erupt from her lower gum line. If she inherits her father’s dental genetic traits, one of these teeth will probably need a root canal in a month or so. Here’s a list of the other foods she’s added to her core diet of breast milk:

  • Sweet potatoes (old trusty — if you could only eat one food, you couldn’t choose much more wisely)
  • Bananas (her new favorite — also rhymes with “Nana”)
  • Apples
  • Green beans (not the first thing she would order off a menu)
  • Peas (see Green beans)
  • Peaches (second favorite, behind bananas)
  • Carrots
  • Corn + zucchini (one of the few foods her mother and I don’t steam and puree ourselves)
  • Salt & vinegar pork rinds (only when we feel like spoiling her)

Jackie isn’t quite ready to crawl, so here’s a video medley of her burning calories the only two ways she knows how — by bouncing and swimming:

This post is a special long-distance hug to Nana, whose sickness this week has prevented her from coming to Raleigh this week like she planned. I realize how difficult life can be for grandparents when illness gets in the way of time with a grandbaby.

Katie and understand that Nana must be really ill; it probably took a lot of self-control and a CDC injunction to keep her off of I-85 North. Maybe the pictures below can be some sort of consolation in lieu of quality Jackie time.

Get well soon Nana

Get well soon Nana!


Jackie loves the song "French Navy" by Camera Obscura

Jackie loves the song "French Navy" by Camera Obscura.

Green beans? Yecch.

Green beans? Yecch.

Green bean are nasty

Green beans = nasty

Strawberry mustache?

Strawberry mustache? I's kinda weird.

Jackie, doing her best Dick Jones imitation

Jackie with Mom in the pool -- the baby is doing her best Dick Jones imitation.

Jackie and Dad tasting pool toys

Jackie and Dad tasting pool toys

Jackie and Dad lounging

Jackie and Dad lounging

Over the past couple of weeks, Katie has convinced me that Jackie is ready for a little variety in her diet. The nursing and bottles of breast milk are still going very well (from this spectator’s perspective), but Jackie seems to want a little more to eat than her five feedings a day can provide. On top of that, she is mesmerized when she watches Katie and me eat or drink.

Her interest and growing hunger prompted us to try giving her rice cereal mixed with milk. The verdict is still out, but I’m pretty sure she won’t list rice cereal as her favorite food in the official Carolina Women’s Soccer media guide 18 years from now.

Here’s some video evidence that what goes down sometimes comes up (director’s note: the point of highest drama occurs at the very end).

I’ve added some pictures we took while Katie’s grandmother, mother, and sister were in Raleigh.

Katie’s grandmother, mother, and sister visited us in April, and I think the baby was held and adored continuously, every hour of every day, until they left Raleigh. This kind of doting is not uncommon when Nana Burns is on premises, but to see the four generations of Burns/Jeffcoats women oohing and aahing in unison was something to behold.

At one point, Katie, Mawmaw, Holly and Janet had a conversation that lasted several minutes, but they never once made eye contact with each other. Each woman’s gaze converged at the same focal point — their eyes were fixated on Jackie the entire time they were talking.

Holly and Mawmaw drove all the way from Louisiana to spend time with us. Judging by her interaction with Jackie, it’s obvious that Holly will make a great mother herself one of these days. As for Mawmaw, we knew she would be able to make the long trip from Simsboro, but we didn’t expect her to be so spry when climbing up and down the 18 steps in our staircase.

She didn’t come out and say it (or anything else for that matter), but I know that Jackie loved meeting her great grandmother and her aunt. Thanks for making the trip!

Katie’s father also drove to Raleigh, and we enjoyed our time with him. He earned a gold star and a steak dinner for removing ivy from the sides of our house on the day after his birthday. Thanks Ben!

A lot has happened in the last few weeks — a wonderful weekend with Nana, a trip to Boone, Katie’s birthday, new music (albums from Neko Case & DOOM, select tracks from new Junior Boys and Dan Deacon), and hectic work days/nights — but nothing has been a bigger deal in little Jackie’s world than spending her first weeks with Ms. Rose.

When Katie and I go to work every day, Jackie goes to stay with Ms. Rose. I don’t know what Jackie does while she’s there, but I know she always smiles at Ms. Rose when I drop her off, and she’s always exhausted when Katie picks her up. Perhaps the two other children under Ms. Rose’s care, who are both around 13 months old, are putting innocent pressure on the little one to keep up. Regardless, we get the sense that Ms. Rose is a very positive influence…so far, so good.

Here’s some assorted video that covers the following topics:

  • Mom’s last day at home before returning to work
  • A taste test gone wrong
  • Straight rollin’ — to the left, to the left, to the right, to the right
  • The first of many, many Daddy-Daughter Days

I never knew that a big human could love a little human so daggone much.

The little one is doing very well at the three-month mark. She weighs about 14-and-a-half pounds now and we can fill a large box with the baby clothes she’s already outgrown. She has begun to roll over on her play mat, where she enjoys grabbing anything she can wrap those long fingers around. She continues to coo, squeal, and mimic her parents’ words. Oh, and she and I had a delightful Saturday-morning dance party yesterday.

I often wonder how it feels to be a baby. Even though she is often smiley and seemingly happy, I get the sense that all this growing is fairly painful. All the movement and cause-and-effect knowledge we take for granted as adults must be difficult learning experiences for an infant. On the other hand, I bet Jackie gets a lot of joy and satisfaction from the discoveries she makes as she gains control of her body.

We’ve had a wonderful weekend (basketball and otherwise) that included a visit from Steve Saville (more on that later). The Jones family here realizes that we have to cherish today, tomorrow and the rest of next week because things are about to change.

One week from tomorrow, Katie will return to work and Jackie will start spending her days under the care of Ms. Rose. This reality is beginning to set in for Katie, but that doesn’t mean it’s going to be easy for her to drive away from that baby when the time comes. Ms. Rose is very well-qualified, and her references (we spoke to seven), gave her child care services rave reviews. Leaving Jackie will be hard…I just hope Katie can find comfort in leaving our daughter in such good hands.

Here’s some video Katie took last week.

Jackie is approaching three months, and one of the latest developments is her new-found fondness for chewing. I can’t wait to leave indie rock, electro, Russian classical, non-gangster hip-hop, jazz, slowcore, post-punk, or shoegaze credits under her pillow on behalf of the Tooth/Tune Fairy. Here’s a video of her teething a little, playing a little, and being her adorable little self.

Jackie had her two-month check up with her pediatrician the other day, which can easily be described in two parts.

The first part was the good part. They weighed and measured her while Katie and I looked on, eager to hear the results. We realize that these numbers are simply a snapshot of her as an infant, and not any kind of indication of future growth, but it’s always fun to quantify her development. Here are some stats and their parenthetical percentile rankings:

Weight: 12.75 lb. (90th)

Height: 24.75 in. (98th)

Noggin circumference: 16.8 in. (99th)

Of course, no one at this house is “keeping score” or “comparing babies” or even “emphasizing baby benchmarks”, but Katie and I were pleased with the doctor’s evaluation. It means that she’s eating and growing well. And, she has a big head like her old man.

The bad part of the doctor’s appointment involved her two-month vaccination. Three needle stabs, several baby screams, and one distraught mommy later, we headed for home.

Finally, here is some assorted video footage that shows off her newly-extended vocal range:

Image from Raleigh

Urban dirt-biking

I took this post-apocalyptic picture outside Jones Barber Shop in Raleigh last year.