Friday, August 28, 2009

Nursery is done!

At long last, it is complete. Now if I can finish the rest of my life I will be ready for the babe (it's not like I'm waiting until the last minute or anything.)

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A drag queen sat on my baby.

The Gay 90's. Bachelorette Party. Drag Show. Queen named.... Desiree, maybe? I forget, but she won a Ru Paul title, which sounds impressive in the drag world (not that I really know.) Damn, girl had some moves, and long, long legs. She wandered through the audience. People gave her dollars, she danced. I wasn't about to approach the stage to tip my entertainer (pregnant girl in front of the audience? I don't think so.) So when she walked (strutted) by, this was my chance to give her a tip. Only then she sat on my belly. And caressed (I think? Couldn't really see.) my friend's boobs. There were legs in the air. I could barely breathe. Baby will never forgive me. Still in utero and already traumatized for life.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

The rest of my life.

Although the mother and mother-in-law can ONLY ask about their impending grandchild, there are a few other (admittedly less exciting) things happening.

1. Our vegetable tomato garden.
Seriously, that's a garden. As in, we planted it and take responsibility for it. It used to have other things than just tomato's, but as you can see that is no longer the case. There used to be peas, and garlic, and lettuce, and swiss chard, and beans, and corn. Now it is just tomato's. Every year we swear we won't let the tomato's take over, and every year...

2. Tamales! I made 75 tamales on Sunday, and they are so good!
I roughly followed the recipe here. For the Masa, I did the following:
  • 4 cups masa
  • 2 tbs paprika
  • 2 tbs salt
  • 1.5 tbs cumin
  • 2 tsp oregano (it was probably quite a bit more, though, as I just dumped.)
  • 3 tbs garlic powder
  • 1/2 cup oil
  • 5 cups broth
I did sacrifice my arm to the endeavour, though:

But so worth it.

3. And I'm working on an abstract for a meeting in December. The idea of bringing the little one to a science conference is daunting, but I figure it's my future and I should embrace it. However, I thought I had until 20 September, and it turns out I have until next Thursday. Doh. So, better get this show on the road in case little one decides to make an early appearance.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

A book

I rarely promote products here, because I think that's kind of lame. But a couple months ago I stumbled on a book (at Urban Outfitter's, of all places) that I've been thinking of ever since. It's called "An Awesome Book" by Dallas Clayton. And it made me feel like a kid again. It made me remember reading Dr. Seuss books, and the Giving Tree, and Shel Silverstein. Books I loved as a kid. I didn't buy it at the time, because who buys a kids book at Urban Outfitters? And because I hadn't realized it would stick with me for so long.

But when I went to buy it, finally, I realized I couldn't find it anywhere other than his website. So I think this guy deserves some promotion. An internet search reveals that other people's kids do, indeed, like this book as well. It's not just me. And I'm so excited to read this book to my little girl.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Friday, August 21, 2009

I'll never....

I know I may regret this post someday, so rather than saying "I'll never do these things" let's keep it to "I'll try not to do these things."

1. Say "shut up" to my child. I realize that for some people it's just another form of "be quiet" or "hush" but to me there is a world of difference.

2. Make her feel like she has to compete/live up to DH or me. We've both been quite successful in life, I hope the same for our child, but I fully realize success can take any number of different paths.

3. Make her feel her self-worth depends on her appearance. While I will never pretend that appearance doesn't matter, I hope to be able to raise her to understand that ultimately perseverance, kindness and humor will get you most places you need to go.

What I will have a harder time with:

4. Not trying to push her into music. I will have a hard time comprehending if our child doesn't love music.

5. Embracing a love of sports. If she loves it, I'll try to love it too, but I know I'll have difficulty getting it.

I know that this list will grow to be much longer. I've really just started thinking about it. But that will suffice for tonight.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

My thoughts heading into battle.

1. I found out yesterday I tested positive for Group B Strep. I know it's not a big deal, but it's the first thing I would consider "risky" about this pregnancy (even though something like 30% of women test positive, so it's not really risky.) Unfortunately, it may lead to more interventions during labor (i.e. IV) than I had hoped.

2. There is a stretch mark explosion on my lower belly. I was bummed. My body is becoming a battlefield, and the real battle hasn't even begun.

3. As of monday I was finger tip dilated and 40% effaced. Not a ton of progress, but better than nothing. Any progress now is progress I don't have to make later.

4. I conducted a non-scientific survey last week on the bump. Everywhere I've read that only 10% of women have their water break before labor begins, but it seemed like so many of the birth stories I was reading involved water breaking before labor began. Turns out I was right, over 35% of women had their water break before labor began. I find this really interesting, because with over 200 respondents that's a pretty good sample population. Why is this population so much different? Or is the 10% just an outdated statistic?

4. I think today is my last day in the lab. I'm on the machine all day today, which is always satisfying. But it takes half my daily energy just to get into school, and I have decided that energy would be better spent by forgoing my 45 minute commute into school. I seem to be getting better work done with my feet propped up on the couch anyway.

5. My office mate, who sees me daily, made a comment today that I seem to have gotten huge. I was thinking the exact same thing, or else I might have been offended. Within the past week, I feel like my belly has doubled in size. Thus the stretch marks, I suppose. I know it hasn't actually gotten that much bigger, and I've probably only gained 0.5 lbs this week, but something feels different.

6. It is taking some serious will power not to buy more diapers. Specifically cute diapers, because I know I don't need any right now. Though I really don't have much past the newborn stage, but I had planned to wait and see what I like before buying more. I mean, how cute is this:

7. I am seriously excited about getting to wear normal clothes again. About being able to buy something on sale and think I might get to wear it next year, even if it's out of season at the moment. Just to look like a normal human again will be amazing.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Here's why I'm excited.

When I was in the military (there I go revealing more personal details) everyone thought I was a dirty, grungy hippy. And now that I'm a geologist, where everyone is a dirty-grungy-hippy, many consider me to be more on the conservative side. Because *gasp* I didn't vote for Franken, I don't consider buying organic to be the end-all, I drive when I could walk (though I am 8 months pregnant) and I sometimes eat frozen pizzas (though A and I made a pact to stop that after the little one is here, because it makes us feel a little trashy.)

BUT. The things that make me excited about having a newborn, in addition to having heard that they're pretty damn cute: baby wearing and cloth diapers. That does make me sound like a dirty-grungy-hippy. I have never used a cloth diaper in my life, but for some reason they are so addictive. It's like collecting baseball cards or something. And the idea of kangarooing (I'm pretty sure I made up that word) is so cool to me; it's like having a growth stuck to your abdomen that experiences all the same things you do. You can then rehash your actions, the night before, the weather and politics, and get some pretty great advice in return (i.e. a dirty diaper to indicate that you really should have held your tongue.) It's like having breakfast with your girlfriends (a la Sex in the City, may she rest in peace) but without the food coma afterwards.

P.S. I've been corrected many times that it's "Hippie" and not "Hippy". But being as I come from the land of hippy's, I feel pretty comfortable spelling it my way. Thanks anyway.

Friday, August 14, 2009

36w 5d

DH was rather suspicious when I walked out of the bathroom with camera in hand. Luckily the museum was shutting down so there was no concern of someone walking in on me taking pics in the bathroom.

Push button film speed

I'm overcompensating for my previous lack of pictures. Tonight I played with film speed; this is what makes digital cameras so cool, no need to change film when you want to change speed. It was almost dark as I shot these pictures but I was able to get some great images of the St. Paul riverfront.

Fun with apertures

A small aperture creates this starburst effect, so i spent a little time playing with it last week. Now the trick is to not have the starburst be the focus but a secondary part of the image.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

I would be (partially) helpless without him.

On the bus today (sidenote: it's a bit shocking to me how many of my posts involve my bus ride. It's not actually that exciting, but it is the only time that I interact with people that I can blog about without fear of repercussion. Blogging about friends/coworkers usually leads to me pissing people off/offending them, even if I mean to be complimentary, because I am so incredibly talented at putting my foot in that there mouth. Even with my 8-month-preggo belly my foot still fits just fine.)

Anyway, on the bus today. A not-so-very-old man stood up to pull the cord and fell over. He had a cane, making if obvious that he's not-so-very mobile to begin with. I tried to help him up, but he looked at me like I was crazy and more likely to topple on top of him than succeed in helping, and he was probably correct. But my mind immediately flashed to "Where's A? Doh, at work. MMM..... what would A do? I have no idea. So now I'll stare straight ahead and stay out of the way." Any time there's a catastrophe of any proportion that involves someone's health, I immediately look for A. That is what having an ER doc at my side 70.23% of the time does to me: it makes me incapable of thinking how to resolve these situations on my own.

Not that, had I never met A, I would have figured out what to do in such situations. But it's an odd phenomenon to realize there are parts of my life in which I am completely helpless. I suspect that as I grow older there will be more and more of these. It's not so bad as it might have been 50 years ago; I know how to change my oil (though I don't enjoy it), and A is intimately familiar with the the washing machine. But there is one other area of my life where I am completely helpless: the grill. I really, truly, have very little idea how to grill when he's not around. Usually, if A is at work and there is grilling to be done, there is another male of equal-grill-temperament present. And so I carry on in clueless bliss, perpetuating stereotypes as I go.

Friday, August 7, 2009

I just took the elevator one floor.

To use the restroom, which, against all reason, is one floor down from my office. Because I work in a building old enough that back in the day they only bothered putting women's rooms on the floors secretaries work on, while they put men's rooms on every floor. Somehow, every science building I've worked in seems to have this issue.

But taking the elevator one floor? That ranks right up there in annoying-ness to:

1) People who stand on the street corner and ask "Do you have a minute to save the planet?" And I just want to shout at them, that's what I do every freaking day! And me giving you a dollar will not save the planet, because 90% of that dollar will go to pay bureaucrats and street hawkers like you.

2) People who don't replace the toilet paper/acid in the clean lab after using all of it (very different scenarios, but they truly feel about the same.)

3) People who take the bus one stop. Which is ~2 blocks. Or at least, I used to find this annoying, until I got pregnant. And started taking the elevator one floor.

Oregon has come to me

I love these rainy, cloudy days. We don't get many of them here in Minn, and every time they remind me of glorious Oregon weather. Which I hated when I actually lived there, but which I now love every once in a while.

It's been such a busy week, but such a good one. Last Friday my brother flew in on his way back from the Oshkosh air show. He got to see his very-preggo sister and was horrified enough to bring me satisfaction. I'm too old to purposely pick on my brother, but there's still some joy in upsetting/shocking him in mild ways. Then from Monday to Wednesday an old friend of ours from Beantown stopped by on his roadtrip from East to West; he's actually moving to my hometown in Oregon. And then last night my college roommate, who is from Minnesota originally and in town visiting family, came over for dinner. Her ~9 month old son came as well, so adorable. I love seeing DH with babies, he's so much more of a natural than I am.

DH has been sick all week, and thus has been sleeping on the futon. I feel bad about this, but obviously not bad enough to keep him from sleeping on the futon. And it has apparently worked, because I'm still not sick, and as I've learned in the past, germs that can take A down can take a charging rhino down, they are that powerful. But he confessed he woke up Monday morning wondering what he'd done to land himself on the couch.

Besides that, I feel like I'm just biding my time. Which is probably not what I should be doing in my last month of freedom. I should be sky diving, or climbing Mt. Kilimanjaro or something. But it's funny how 8-months-pregnant doesn't really allow any of those options. So instead I get excited about cloth diapers and ice cream.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

I must look big...

You all know this old woman. The one who looks like she's had a hard life, and has enough of a glare to make sure that you realize it too. The one who will stare down some wiry young guy playing on his iphone until he realizes that there are no empty seats on the bus and guilt him into offering her his seat.

This is the woman that offered me her seat today. And the bus wasn't even full. I apparently have a delusional concept of how fatigued I look, because when this woman takes sympathy on you, you know you must look world weary.

Sunday, August 2, 2009

The great diaper prep

The baby shower last weekend was fantastic. Everyone was so thoughtful, and it was nice to be at a baby shower and not be terrified of babies (which describes every shower I've been to up until now.) It's always a little weird to put a bunch of not very girly girls in a situation that inherently calls for girliness, but I, for one, enjoy it on occasion. And the few women I know with children brought them, so it was nice to get to pick their brains. Lastly, it was nice to be able to talk freely about the one thing that plagues my mind these days and not feel out of line. Now we just have a few little odds and ends to get and we'll be ready.

I have finally started to prep my natural fiber dipes, and man is it confusing. I really can understand why many women are daunted by cloth diapers. First, the confusion of the lingo and choosing which diapers to buy. Next, the confusion of prepping and laundering. There are so many options, so many recommendations, so many intensely held debates. I will document here the prepping path I have chosen, though will not be able to fill you in for a month yet as to whether it worked for me. I'm also going to update my sidebar with the links that have been most helpful and most simplistic in choosing which way to go.

1st load: Synthetic diapers and covers (Bum Genius and Bumkins) and covers, 1 tbs Charlie's soap, hot water wash, cold water rinse and line dry.

2nd load: bleached indian prefolds, 1 tbs Charlie's soap, hot water wash, cold water rinse and line dry.

3rd load: unbleached Greeen Mountain Diaper prefolds, drybees bamboo fitteds and kissaluv fitteds. First I boiled them for ~20 minutes with 1 tbs Charlie's, then rinsed with the hose. Then a hot water wash with 1 tbs Charlie's and a cold water rinse, followed by line dry.

I have already read since my boil that I shouldn't have boiled anything with snaps as it can ruin them, but the snaps look just fine to me. Keeping my fingers crossed on this one.