Clear, plastic beds don't come cheap.

So, we're home. And we have a baby with us. The nurses of the SCaBU just refused to continue to be the World's Most Expensive Baby-sitters. When they told me how much it was for Mister Man to be there per night I nearly checked him and I into The Four Seasons. I would have had a facial and he could have a massage and maybe then we could work up some of that wind he is keeping in his belly.

He successfully drank out of bottles for twenty-four hours in the hospital and then Bub and I were invited to spend the night with him in the parent's room. We only got a few hours sleep but we managed not to inadvertently kill him so they said, "YAY! He can go home!" At 6 pounds 3 ounces, he was starting to just look silly next to all of the little two-pound babies. They looked less like preemies and more like his lunch.

Now, we are catching up on the six weeks we lost while me and the baby were in the hospital, and the six week we lost because he came early. I'm sure there is an overlap in there but math like that is best left up to the geniuses. Either way, time was lost and we didn't get to do everything we needed to before Mister Man showed up. Things like, you know, FOOD. We haven't been food shopping in at least nine weeks. NINE WEEKS. Last night we made an effort to take chicken out of the freezer for tonight's dinner because the local Chinese knows our order before they even pick up the phone. Bub went out today to get some of the basics: Cheerios, Bran Flakes, eggs, chicken kiev, pasta sauce, Coke and Swiffer dusters.

My mother arrives in seven days. When we present the Swiffer dusters to her as a welcome present, which do you think she'll do first - hold the baby or shove the dusters down my throat?

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Liz in Dublin