Wednesday, 28 May 2008

Parental Leave

Sinead came across an interesting article in one of our national newspapers recently which gives a good overview of some of the issues facing working mothers/mothers to be.

The article was in response to recent comments by Alan Sugar on the UK version of The Apprentice

The reality is that some employers are hesitant to employ women in key roles," he said earlier this month. "Regretfully, there's concern in the back of their minds that women may not be a good choice because they may come with complications and have their work and career disrupted by family stuff."

The article goes on to look at the model in some other European countries, and suggests that giving equal leave rights to men, might be a solution.

You can read the full article here -

Monday, 26 May 2008

Do you fall easily?

Sinead had her second scan today and everything showed up fine. The baby is developing as expected and the next visit will be for be for checks on spine and heart development.

During our visit the consultant asked Sinead the falling question "Do you fall easily". Now to understand the answer given, let me take you back to last night.

We went to the Bruce Springsteen concert in Dublin. It was excellent and a good time was had by all, despite the heavy winds and rain near the end of the show. After we parked our car, and were making our way into the show, Sinead stumbled (no drink honest!!) and ended up on her bum in the middle of the street. She was a bit worried about any damage that might have happened to the baby, so when the consultant asked the question today, her answer was "not normally, but I did fall last night at the concert". Of course he looked at us quite strangely and re-phrased his question to "did you fall pregnant easily". Cue red faces from the two of us.

We got another printout of the scan, and as soon as I run it through the scanner I'll post it. All in all a nice end to the week - I'm counting tomorrow as the first day of the week as we are back to work.

Some other news. I failed my driving test on Friday. I was like a bear for 2 days, as I felt I had done enough to pass. As usual Sinead threatened to kick my ass if I didn't snap out of it, and that seemed to do the trick. So if you're reading this Sinead, I'm sorry for being a grumpy boots on Friday and Saturday. I've reapplied for the test and hope to have another crack at the whip in a few months. Speaking of whips and cracking, we saw the new Indiana Jones film on Friday night and I really enjoyed it. I'd probably rank in number 3 out of the series. #1 is Raiders of the Lost Ark; #2 Temple of Doom and #4 The Last Crusade.

Hope you enjoyed the update, going to finish cleaning the kitchen. In the last 2 weeks every time Sinead goes into the kitchen, she is getting sick due to a bad smell, which we haven't been able to track down. The fact that I can't smell it isn't helping, so we've been cleaning out various parts of the kitchen to see if we can find the cause. Tonight it's the turn of the fridge.

Some messages from Friends

From Paul Kearney (cousin and our Best Man)
Big Congrats my Good man. Fair play to both of you!

From Aileen O'Mahoney (my friend from University days, now living in Belfast)
Knew it. Fab news. Delighted for both of you.

Brendan O'Hea (my oldest friend since I was 4. Now living in England, married with 2 children)
In response to my question asking for advice and tips. Sell a kidney and have as many lie ins between now and then as possible. That's fantastic news. Over the moon for both of you.

Andy Murphy (friend from my time in Dublin. Shared a room with him the weekend I met Sinead)
I knew she (Sinead) was pregnant buddy! Shauna put 2 and 2 together when you were in Derry. That's great news.

Brendan Kearney (cousin from Derry)
That's great news lad, really delighted for both of you and hope all is well. Had my suspicions when Sinead wasn't drinking on my birthday. Take care of her and make sure she doesn't do any housework or lift anything heavy

Russ Black (friend from University, now living in Harrogate. Married and has a newly arrived baby, a few month old)
Great news, many congrats. Get plenty of sleep in. Pass on our regards to Sinead.

Daniel Kearney (cousin living in Belfast)
That's great news. Congrats to both of you.

Breda Broderick (friend from Dublin. Married with 3 boys, all under 3 years old)
This is truly wonderful news. He or she is a very lucky baby with both of you as parents. God bless all 3 of you.

Got loads of well wishes from friends and colleagues in work as well, including David, Zsofia, Ditte, Stuart and John.

Wednesday, 21 May 2008

What a night

Oh Boy, what a night. I really thought we had blown it. Those penalties put about 10 years on me, in the space of about ten minutes. At the end I was watching it behind the sofa, with a bottle of whiskey in my hand. Bit of a sore head this morning.

Get in there!!!!

Match report

Monday, 19 May 2008

The World now knows

So Sinead had her first scan last week, on Thursday to be precise. It was amazing to hear the heartbeat and to see the movements especially when the nurse zoomed in. We could see the little arms moving about, and apparently he/she was standing on his/her head.

I sat there not saying much, feeling a bit like a spare tool with nothing to do. I guess the important thing was to be there for Sinead in case she needed me (if anything was wrong). Thank God anyhow that everything seems to be well, and the nurse seemed to be very pleased with the progress. Our next appointment is next week, the day after the Bruce Springsteen concert. We will be staying in my friend Jim's house, in Dublin, on the Sunday night and will probably leave early enough to make our appointment in the afternoon.

As you may have noticed I'm referring to my wife by her full name now - Sinead. After the scan we started telling our friends the news, so I feel more comfortable revealing our identities online now. In a later post I'll write more about the both of us, how we met etc. I was asked recently by one of my work colleagues if I was superstuious (for not telling anyone till after the first 3 months). I guess we kind of are, however it is a very cultural thing here in Ireland (not to say anything during this 3 month period). In addition we also felt that statistically the first 3 months are the most likely for something to go wrong, and we didn't want to be in the uncomfortable position of telling people bad news if something did go wrong. That's not to say everthing is still going to be ok, far from it. I'm still lighting a candle every Sunday after mass, to Mary, that she will look after Sinead and our baby during these coming months.

In case I forget, I promised in my last post for more details on whether we went with Public or Private care. We finally decided to go Private, as we were having some trouble conceiving and just felt more comfortable going this way. It's going to stretch us a little financially, but we did our sums beforehand and are prepared to make a few sacrifices to help us afford it.

I've a few text replies to our news, from friend's that I will share in my next post.

Our Baby - First scan

Here's the first picture. Hope you can make him/her out. Taken on Thuraday 15th May 10.14am. Click picture to enlarge