This just in: the family is about to expand.


Robbi and I have been in the know since before we went to Alaska, but we’ve been keeping a lid on it pending the 12-week ultrasound.

Once Robbi got the green light, the first order of business was informing the trio of current children that their list of chores would soon expand to the care, feeding, and amusement of a fourth.

We were confident that Alden would be on board. She has been actively lobbying for months or years now for a little sister. Kato, too, seemed more or less sanguine at the possibility of moving up the family depth chart. August was the wild card, occasionally expressing enthusiasm at the prospect of being a big brother, but just as often responding by crossing his arms, dropping his chin, and sticking out his lower lip when Alden would launch into baby campaign mode.

But the deed had been done, and the news had to be shared. We gathered the kids on the couch, pulled out the photo of the ultrasound, and presented it to them. At first there a stretch of searching bewilderment, but then Kato gave Robbi a knowing look and said, “You’re pregnant?” Robbi nodded. Alden shrieked, and I pulled out my phone and snapped this photo.

The evidence is in: August is on board.


We spent a few weeks telling friends and family and posted on Facebook a few days ago. In addition to the incredible flood of love and support, there were a few folks suggesting that we have taken strategic book marketing to an unprecedented level.  I would counter that this might be the least strategic thing we’ve ever done. I argue that if, if anything, this decision will only hurt sales by nullifying the fundamental premise.

So what are we thinking?

Robbi has always imagined a family with four kids. I had always thought two seemed just right. So we went for the compromise, and Augie happened. And I simply can’t imagine the world without Augie. Over the past five years, we’ve settled into a workable sanity. Diapers are a thing of the past. Everyone sleeps well through the night. Everyone is in school all day long. All three kids have gained a state of comfortable self-sufficiency, freeing us up for a more free-range parenting style.

All of that is about to go out the window.

So, seriously, what were we thinking?

That we like the people we’ve made so far and want to see what the next one will be like. That having a little podling around will be good for all three of the current crop. That we’re not yet entirely out of time and energy and might as well put it to the best possible use.

That even though babies surely ruin everything, they’re worth their weight in love and astonishment.