Twentieth Week Ultrasound Update: We See Dangly Boy Parts

We learned yesterday that our baby due in March is a boy. As our 3-year-old daughter says, the baby has “dangly boy parts.” She said “it doesn’t matter” that he’s a boy instead of a girl because she’s looking forward to being a big sister.

This was a routine 20th week ultrasound, and no problems from Fifth Disease were noted, though this level of sonogram would only notice a major problem.

An ultrasound image with five arrows and labels reading: dangly boy parts, raised arm, left knee, umbilical cord and big ol head.

The kid is a bit akimbo in the image with his legs bent open; it helps to see the live moving image to understand his orientation.

I tell you, I am downright disappointed. Having a boy messes everything up.

First, I’ve been chipping away at my wife’s obstinate, narrow-minded resistance to naming the baby after that famous flying Japanese turtle known as the defender and friend of all children. Gamera is a great name, and works for a boy or girl. But my wife hates it, so I’ve been telling her we would informally call the kid Gammy. And as you know, Gammy is a girl’s name.

Second, my wife likes the name Wesley. I don’t think Will Wheaton would even name a kid Wesley. Ignore the Wesley Crusher issue with the requisite “Put Wesley in the airlock” jokes. The name still strikes me as feminine, I suppose because it rhymes with Leslie. On the other hand, I should be thankful we’re not having a girl because her other favored name was Willamina.

Third, I fear that diaper changes will be more dangerous than they were with my daughter because you never know if the pistol is loaded.

Fourth, I’m on the hook for taking a greater part as a role model
for potty procedures. My wife can’t urinate standing up, and
she once asked me if boys dab themselves after peeing. She
probably doesn’t know about shrinkage, either.

Fifth, most of the clothes we’ve been saving for years are useless.
I’ll dress the boy in pink pajamas, but not denim pants with pink
hearts. Why on Earth do clothing manufacturers have to genderize the
most basic of clothing elements? I’m looking for a reason other than,
“To milk you dumb parents out of every last penny.”

So, here is our closet.

Photo of my closet filled with 20 ten gallon storage bins, a few smaller bins and two bags, all containing baby and toddler clothes, toys and gear. The bins are color-coded with digital stars to indicate that 10 bins contain mostly girl clothes, 9 bins contain unisex toys and gear, 3 bins contain unisex clothing and 3 bins contain books and toys not yet appropriate for our 3-year-old girl.

  • Pink
    — @#$%^&*! These girly clothes gotta go.
  • Blue — Baby toys and gear good for any gender.
  • Yellow — Books and toys not yet appropriate for our 3-year-old girl.
  • Green — Unisex clothes such as hats, socks and some shoes.

Incidentally, for the box labels I used the Gamera font, complete with an image of a giant turtle ripping apart a Japanese train. For some reason my wife was not impressed.


22 Responses to “Twentieth Week Ultrasound Update: We See Dangly Boy Parts”

  1. Paul says:


    I won’t comment on the names for fear of stepping on any family toes. ;-)

    But about the clothes, try posting on Craig’s list for someone expecting a girl who has a lot of boy’s clothes and do a swap. If neither of you are particular about whether it’s a fair swap or not you might be surprised and get some great stuff. Then for the things you got that you don’t want to keep.

    October 25th, 2007 at 1:51 am

  2. Chief Family Officer says:


    Ah, the name issue. You know, we actually had the opposite problem. The first time around, we had a boy name and a girl name picked out, so we would have been all set if we’d had a girl next. But when #2 turned out to be a boy, we had to go through the discussion all over again. Good luck with that.

    On the clothes – one great idea I read (in Parents, I think) is to put appliques or patches on the clothes – girls get butterflies and flowers, boys get trucks and sporting gear.

    October 25th, 2007 at 5:23 am

  3. Kaz says:

    Congrats. We are in the same boat – 3 year old daughter and a newborn son. Most clothes we saved for years are now useless (to us, at least).

    Yeah, uhm… my daughter was really excited about being a Big Sister, too… when the baby was still inside my wife.

    Things have, uhm, changed a bit…

    October 25th, 2007 at 6:39 am

  4. adrienne says:


    As mom to a boy- I promise you, they’re well worth the hassles. And the peeing thing really seems to be different from kid to kid. Our boy was not a spontaneous shooter (which I had expected), so you too may be pleasantly surprised.

    You wife is right about Gamera. It would be a tough name during elementary school. Being raised on Methodism (John Wesley) and action films (Wesley Snipes), I tend to think of Wesley as masculine. The hero of Princess Bride is Westley… but somehow that seems the opposite of Easterly. Westley the Weathercaster.

    A British footballer, a Texas outlaw, and a Limp Bizkit musician all round out Wikipedia’s list of Wesleys (

    We didn’t find out the gender of our baby before birth, so we had two names on the ready (one for either gender). While Ranger, being a boy, got a charming name (he wouldn’t answer to Ranger in a crowd even for a cookie) our girl selection remains odious beyond measure (Bianca Genevieve). We would have had to change her name sometime around week 2 of her life because that name was a serious misstep (which I can only blame on my pregnant brain misfiring).

    I’m very impressed with your organization!

    Congratulations again!

    October 25th, 2007 at 6:58 am

  5. Amy says:

    How exciting – we also have a 3-year-old daughter, and found out we are expecting a son in February. It has been very helpful to me to go through the girl clothes and only keep a fraction of the nicest ones for the future – I feel like I am finally getting used to this idea of a boy. I grew up with two sisters and have no idea how a boy works, so, yes, I will be depending on Daddy a lot more – isn’t that what Daddies are for?

    October 25th, 2007 at 7:01 am

  6. phyllis says:

    okay, that’s not really your closet, right? it’s just a mockup of what it *would* look like if you could be that organized….right!?!??

    seriously, i have 2 boys and then a girl. lots of the stuff can be re-worked. for ex, i put the blue long-sleeve onesies underneath pink short-sleeve outfits. looks great, it’s doable.

    or, since you’re so organized, sell it all to a consignment shop or have a rummage sale and then use the proceeds to buy more clothes.

    good luck!!!!

    October 25th, 2007 at 7:06 am

  7. Bob says:

    I’ve got a 9 day old boy, and I can tell you, you’ll love it! The random pee shots are actually hilarious (our curtain is in dire need of a washing)
    I’d imagine that, already being a parent of a little girl, you’ve learned more than you’ll need to know for a young boy..

    As far as the name, just keep on pushing man.. (I was going for Optimus Prime.. no go, but now all of my friends call him that, so it kind of worked out :)

    The clothes, also remember that some things could be dyed (if you find a baby friendly dye) and flowers etc can easily be unstiched with a seam ripper.. have a “clothes conversion party” and get some friends to help you make some boy clothes :)

    Best of luck,

    October 25th, 2007 at 7:29 am

  8. judy says:

    Yay for boys! That’s going to be one cute baby—I can tell from the sonogram!
    Congratulations you to all three of you1
    p.s. My sister-in-law’s name is Wesley….

    October 25th, 2007 at 11:32 am

  9. Bev says:

    (a) Congratulations. As I recall I had a boy or two and they aren’t all that bad, usually.

    (b) Your closet is entirely too organized.

    The Sykes sexing u/s is due first week in Nov.

    October 25th, 2007 at 12:47 pm

  10. STL Mom says:

    Congratulations! Welcome to the world of complete strangers saying, “A girl and a boy! Now you’re done!” as if our other option would be to keep having kids until we had a boy. One of my least favorite stranger comments.
    But the good news is that since you will have fewer hand-me-downs from big sis, you can get her outgrown belongings out of the house as soon as she can’t fit them. If you had two girls, you’d always have a year or two of wardrobe in storage. This will clear up some space for all the NEW stuff you will get. Two kids really do have twice the stuff that one kid does.

    October 25th, 2007 at 1:52 pm

  11. AJ says:

    Paul, I’m a Freecycler too, but our listserv is competitive. Unless you respond within minutes of an offer being posted, you have no hope. I got a great bunk bed though:

    CFO, I’ll look into clothing patches to cover girly decals. Thanks.

    Kaz, I expect our daughter to change her mind about helping with the baby, and maybe be disillusioned with the loss of attention. But just wait until she realizes the boy can be her very own live dress-up doll, and later, when he starts running around the house.

    Adrienne, I swiftly veto’d Wesley. My wife also associated the name with The Princess Bride. In that respect, I’m more partial to the name Fezzik.

    My daughter loves saying, “No more rhymes now, I mean it. Anybody want a peanut?” (She won’t know the context for a few years.)

    Phyllis, Bev, trust me, there is nothing “organized” about tossing stuff into boxes. My wife did sort the clothes by size, but we have boxes specifically so we don’t have to organize much. They look neat because plastic storage bins stack higher and more efficiently than cardboard boxes.

    Amy, Bob, Judy, STL Mom, thanks!

    October 25th, 2007 at 6:24 pm

  12. wwbd says:

    Congrats on the boy!

    Just out of curiosity would you have the same problem dressing a girl in boy’s clothes? This is an issue I have given TONS of thought to and I hate to admit to myself that I would have a really hard time putting a boy in a dress even though I dress my girl in boy’s clothes all the time, and think it is good when she is mistaken for a boy, just so she can get a little bit of male genderization, too. It makes me upset that I would feel uncomfortable doing that to a boy and the only explanation that I can come up with for why, has to do with the relative status of males and females in our society. And that makes me unspeakably sad.

    October 25th, 2007 at 6:57 pm

  13. AJ says:

    WWBD, I am a little apprehensive when my daughter chooses less-girlish clothes if it’s a day when I will be the sole care provider. I sometimes get the impression people look at us and think, “That poor clueless man dresses his daughter like a boy.” But, she wears what she wears.

    October 25th, 2007 at 7:43 pm

  14. Clever Parents says:

    Congratulations to you!!! As a parent to three boys under the age of four, I can attest that the diaper changes can be a challenge — especially when your baby is a newborn — it must be the cool air that kicks them into action.

    Best of luck on the naming negotiation and congratulations again to you and your family. :-)

    October 26th, 2007 at 3:05 pm

  15. HM says:


    We are almost in the same situation as you guys – except in reverse. Our son will be 2 1/2 when our girl is born at the end of February.

    Speaking of the gender thing… I want to get my son a dollhouse for Christmas. He loves his barn and makes the animals “talk” to each other. I think he would enjoy playing out all the changes about to happen in our house. My husband thinks a dollhouse is too “girly” of a toy for his son. I have found a “dollhouse” type toy that looks like a treehouse and is inhabited by a family of squirrels dressed like people.

    Guys, is that masculine enough? Or am I just nuts?!

    Good luck with the name thing. I think boy names are so much easier than girl names.

    October 27th, 2007 at 5:08 am

  16. Linda says:


    A Little Mister? After all those cute girl nicknames you solicited? *Smile* Ah well…

    I was really hoping for a girl for our first (likely only) child, but I’ve come to appreciate the rambunctious energy and excitement of a little boy. We use the nickname “Man-child” when we don’t wish to use a name. (Eleven pounds at birth, he’s still off the growth charts for height – hence the man in Man-child.)

    Enjoy your new little tyke!

    HM –

    I think a toy tree house full of squirrels might be a little nuts, but just in their pantry. Actually I think it’s a great way to have your son model and play through some of the family changes. Nobody thinks twice about boys playing with airport play sets, or auto garage sets, etc. Why limit their play to “work” settings? Family is important to boys and men too. Go for it!

    October 27th, 2007 at 7:55 am

  17. thordora says:

    You can come organize my closet any day.

    I like Gamera. Don’t like Wesley. But most guy names, I don’t really like. We sorta settled on Darwin at one point, but we never ended up needing it anyway.

    My girls wear boy stuff all the time-even when they are dressed in pink, people ask if they’re boys, so I gave up long ago. I just give stuff away to centers that support low income families mostly-freecycle became too much of a hassle.

    And wow! A boy! I guess now you’ll need to get those little tents. :)

    October 29th, 2007 at 6:14 am

  18. Christy says:

    Congrats on the little boy! I am also have a little boy due in February. I was certain mine was a girl and a little shocked to find out it was a boy. We are happy either way. I still get a little depressed when I see all those cute little fru-fru dresses in the store. To be practical, though, they would rarely get worn. We haven’t even started our name battle. I had to pre-veto names such as Elvis, Seven, Slevin and Kong. My husband thinks he’s cute. Although I did like the Optimus Prime guy who posted earlier. My family is full of crappy male names, so we are going to have to be original. I don’t blame you for disliking Wesley. I was a big fan of Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Wesley was a totaly wuss on that show. However, he did grow a pair on Angel. Anyway, good luck with everything!

    October 31st, 2007 at 12:30 pm

  19. brettdl says:

    Totally cool.

    November 3rd, 2007 at 7:09 am

  20. Britton says:

    dude :-P look it up.. Leslie is a MANS name!! :) no hard feelings just thought i’d tell ya. (something a lot of people don’t know is,besides lesley. Ashley, Shirley, Connie, Sidney and Kim are men’s names too!)

    July 2nd, 2008 at 3:39 pm

  21. Lisa Greenberg says:

    Doll houses are good for boys and girls. It allows them to work through sibling/family relationships. Guns are good for boys and girls it allow them to express natural aggressive instincts. Toy soldiers are good for boys and girls it too allows them to express these natural instincts. (A child playing with blocks does not necessarily become a builder, a child playing with horses does not necessarily become a jockey, what they play with is not what they will become, it is a way of expressing themselves). I recommend a book called “A Good enough Parent, by Bruno Bettleheim. It has an excellent chapter on toys and play, amongst other things.

    August 21st, 2008 at 5:07 pm

  22. Johnny says:

    LOL at “dangly boy parts”. Congrats btw!

    November 13th, 2008 at 10:33 pm