Sweet Potato Arrives

Our eldest daughter Jessalyn has been pregnant since January after a trip to Paris with her husband Dan.

We all knew it was going to be a baby girl, but Jess and Dan have been secretive about the name. It’s fashionable nowadays for ultra sound technicians to describe fetuses in terms of vegetables. On one such scan, the family received word that the baby was the “size of a sweet potato.” That became her working title.

Last Saturday was the due date, and Jess said something didn’t feel right. The kicking and usual yoga moves that have been plaguing her of late had stopped.

They went into the hospital–thinking they would surely be that first time anxious couple who would be sent home with the comment, “Come back when you are in labor.”

Instead they hooked her up to a bunch of machines and induced labor. Unbeknownst to any of us, including Jess and Dan, Sweet Potato’s umbilical cord was wrapped around her neck. Her breathing was reduced, her heart rate was not normal. Generally an over achiever on all measures of fetal performance, Sweet Potato was failing.

By 3:00 Sunday afternoon, Jess and Dan were holding their six pound, fifteen ounce girl named Margaret Anne. They intend to call her “Margot” as an homage to their Paris trip. Arlo is thinking about adding a silent “T” to his name. img_1973

At 3:00 Sunday afternoon Tami and I were in the midst of the largest Pepperfest in the history of the world. I was watching the Flying Pepper bi-plane doing dives and spins on the horizon.
By noon the next day we had finished cleaning up from the festival, and by yesterday evening Margot was safely in Grandma and Grandpa’s hands.I gave her a stern lecture about how our family has had enough trauma of late and that nobody was impressed by her umbilical cord tricks. My mother explained to me how babies did not survive such a thing in her day.

This morning Tami and I took over their house, and whipped up shrimp and grits with a fruit salad to welcome their family home from the hospital. Tonight Dan’s family converges, along with my ex-wife Megan. Tami and I will be staging a leg of lamb for the hungry. We cook. We clean. We read. And we fall asleep on the couch as if it is no big deal…

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21 Responses to Sweet Potato Arrives

  1. Margaret Kellner says:

    Whew, what a saga, come to a good end. Margot’s smiling. We’ll take her cue. xoxo Boo Boo

  2. Lesley Landis says:

    Congratulations!! Such sweet news is a welcomed balm.

  3. Diane says:

    Congrats to you all!
    She’s smiling in your arms!
    How wonderful!

  4. Bob Armantrout says:

    Love to you all!

    Curling up with Alexadra Fuller and a newborn – as good as it gets!

    Hopefully Margot doesn’t get any ideas from Alexandra about adventurous and dysfunctional families…

  5. Lexie Wolf says:

    Yay! Such sweetness. And how fortunate for Margot to be born into such a wonderful clan…

  6. Lynda O'Neill-Powers says:

    Congrats from the Powers family in Canada!

  7. Michael & Lynda Powers says:

    Congratulations to the whole family. Enjoy!

  8. Charlotte Vetter says:

    So happy for you all!

  9. Easter Maynard says:

    Lovely, lovely, lovely. That smile says it all.

  10. Camille says:

    Margo is cuter than a sweet potato, more of a sweet pea from what I can tell. Lucky you and Tami, and lucky Jess and Dan to have your support.

  11. Carol says:

    Wonderful, wonderful, wonderful. She’s even smiling.
    Much love to you all. Welcome sweet Margot.

  12. Tobin Freid says:

    Mazel Tov! Such happy news!

  13. Jane Norton says:

    awesome! you look really happy and that is very good! Blessings to Margot and your whole family!

  14. Kathleen Conroy says:

    Congratulations Lyle and Tami! What a beautiful little granddaughter!

  15. Kit Wilson-Pote says:

    Hey, Margot and Grandpa suit each other to a tee, happy faces and cuddle-ease both. Thank goodness for her savvy parents’ promptly heeding the signs of something to check. What a beautiful portrait of brand-new Margot with Dan and Jess!
    Warmest congratulations to all of you, Lyle. Please keep the photos flowing out amongst us myriad Estill-fans, too — love these joyous ‘vicaries’ a lot.

  16. Sally Erickson says:

    There’s just nothing like holding a newborn grandchild. Have a lovely warm time and we’ll see you soon.

  17. Joan Lemire says:

    A miraculous new love to fill your hearts! Rejoice.

  18. Kersten says:

    Bob, I was thinking the same thing about Lyle’s choice of bedtime story! Such a sweetie pie. I guess she is more like a sweet potato pie 😜 Can’t wait until she comes for a visit.

  19. Tim and Deb says:

    Kirsten used to smile like that too. It was gas. Congratulations to all of you!

  20. Kate Simmons says:

    Congratulations! How does it feel to be a grandpa?

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