Wednesday, August 26, 2009

31 years!

Happy anniversary to my wonderful parents! Today they celebrate 31 years of wedded bliss. I mean, it's obviously been blissful, having a daughter like me around for 29 1/2 of them. You're welcome, guys.

They don't look traumatized... do they?

We spent the day just as you'd expect. My Dad, Bean, and I went to Northwest Trek Wildlife Park with our preschool friends. My Mom stayed home and washed and ironed clothes. And DH went to work. This somehow sounded reasonable to all of us at the time. At Northwest Trek, we explored a bit and then took a tram ride through the park. Here are a few shots:

Tonight, DH and I (and Bean, of course) are taking my parents out for Mexican to celebrate their anniversary. This dinner destination was the result of exhaustive negotiations.

Me: "How about the new Italian place that recently opened up nearby?"

Mom: "How about you and DH go to the restaurant while your Dad and I stay home with Bean?"

Me: *heavy sigh* "That is ridiculous, Mom. It's your anniversary."

Mom: "You know my favorite place to eat out is Taco Bell."

Me: "Seriously?"

Mom: "Absolutely."

Me: *another sigh* "Well, I'm not going to argue as long as you're not home eating grilled cheese while DH and I are feasting on shrimp ravioli."

Mom: "Great!"

Dad: "Wasn't there a family Mexican restaurant next to Home Depot?"

Indeed. And that's where we are headed in about 20 minutes. I haven't had Taco Bell since college, when I daily enjoyed a three-course meal (tostada, nachos, cinnamon twists) plus drink for less than $3. I'd like to keep it that way.


In random news, I got an email informing me that my phoned-in question will *finally* be heard on the Suze Orman Show this Saturday at 9 pm Eastern (6 pm Pacific). I know, I know... you've heard that before. I don't blame you if you don't bother to look for it. In fact, please don't look for it, it's really stupid. To hear about my call, click here; and my subsequent discovery, click here.


Also in random news, my husband is still the sweetest man on earth. A couple of nights ago, he came home with an employee recognition award he had received that day. He was told that the director wanted a meeting with him, and he was surprised to be presented with the certificate in front of coworkers and managers. He works long hours, which can be hard on me during the week, but he is wonderful at his job and he gets paid for his overtime.

DH: "I brought home the award just to show you."

Me: "I'm so glad you did!"

DH: "I wanted you to see... you know... that I'm not just screwing around all day."

Me: *laughing* "Oh honey, of course I don't think that."

DH: "No, I know you don't." *pause* "I guess I just think that you deserve the award, too."

Be still my beating heart, he's wonderful. And I'm grateful that he doesn't know think that I just screw around all day.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

The best and worst thing about being pregnant

I have been pregnant for a total of 10 months of my life.

And I have had this song in my head. For all 10.

Specifically: "And now you tell me that you're having my baby? I'll tell you that I'm happy if you want me to."

(Nice, huh?)

Must be sung every night while getting ready for bed.

To be met with a sigh and an exasperated amused and loving head shake from DH.

The only reason I'm telling you this is because I really wanted to put a WHAM! video on my blog. The hormones get me feeling all nostalgic.

So what were you listening to in the '80s?

Tuesday, August 18, 2009


This past weekend, DH and I gave my car a half-ass thorough cleaning so it would be presentable for my parents when they visit this weekend. (Aside: YIPEE!!!!!!!! My parents are flying in on Saturday!!!!!!!!!) We also moved our respective crap into our respective cars, trading back our vehicles after I had been driving DH's Mazda for the past couple of weeks. Car seat: check. Chick music: check. Monogrammed polka-dot coffee sleeve: check. All the important stuff.

On Monday morning I woke up bright and early and showered before Bean awoke. On the calendar: kids book club with the MOMS Club. Bean doesn't give a crap about the book being read, but he does enjoy having all the toys to himself while the other kids sit and listen to the story. Obviously he didn't get that from me. Anyway, I went to look up the address we'd be going to at 10 am, only to discover the activity had been pushed back to 11:30 am, exactly when Bean goes down for a nap. I sighed, shrugged, and decided we'd go to the park by ourselves at 10 am instead.

Also that morning I noticed the stroller was laying in the dining room by the front door. DH needed to leave at 4 am, and he had fortunately discovered it in his trunk before heading out on a business trip. That was close! I picked it up and in nothing short of laziness, put it in the garage next to my car. Could have popped the trunk and put it in, but I didn't.

Conversation in my head:

"I'll just leave it here by the front tire. I'll see it when we get in the car and put it in the trunk then."

"No, you won't. You are going to accidentally leave it right here."

"I won't! Look, it's impossible to miss! I would have to step over it to get into the garage."

"You will find a way to forget it. Trust me."

"Eh. Whatever."

Back inside, the phone rang. It was a friend from preschool and MOMS Club. She had also discovered the inconvenient time change on the book club meeting, and she wondered if I'd like to go for a walk with her instead. Of course! She wasn't sure how to give directions to the trailhead she had in mind, so we agreed to meet in a Starbucks parking lot and drive over together.

Bean and I pulled up to the Starbucks right on time. I did run over a curb in the parking lot on the way in, but whatevs, doesn't everybody do that now and then? (I guiltily remembered when DH nailed one last week, and I exclaimed with an accusing tone, "HONEY!" Man, I'm a bitch sometimes.) We drove to the trail, I opened my trunk, and...

... no stroller. Are you picking up on a theme here? Yes, the stroller was in the garage, exactly where it didn't need to be. *smack*

In retrospect, I should have just let my friend go on the walk with her son, gotten back in the car, and headed back home. Bean was not in a cooperative mood -- he screamed bloody murder when I suggested that he sit in my friend's stroller (she had a carrier she used for her son to kindly free up her stroller for us), and Heaven forbid! he should take two steps on his own. No, the only solution was for me to carry him. Ugh. Being tired and hot... lugging a 20-whatever pound toddler... it was not pretty. But I did enjoy chatting with my friend, as much as I could huff out along the way.

After lunch and Bean's nap, we went to Costco with another friend. She doesn't have a membership and wanted to check out their air conditioners, so I offered to take her. On the drive over, I noticed the car was handling weird. Very bumpy, definitely not right. I parked and got out of the car, and a nice man walked up to me.

"I hate to tell you this, ma'am," he started. "But your rear right tire is completely flat."


Damn that curb.

I considered my options and consulted with AAA. In the end, I had the guys at the Costco tire shop take a look at it. They filled it with air, and we all watched as a huge gaping hole hissed that air right back out at us.

New tire: $124.

Ironically, the exact same price as the speeding ticket I got last week.

Yes, it was lucky that this happened within feet of a tire shop.

However, I can't help but think... really? Another $124?

Perhaps all this trouble I'm having lately is the Universe balancing itself. I mean, my incredible luck -- to have this life growing inside me. (I'm hopeful that it is still growing, as my sense of nausea seems to be.) With only one round of infertility treatment, just a tiny fraction of the heartache it took to conceive our son, it blows my mind that we could actually be holding a newborn come April.

It could be just my own stupidity, forgetting my wallet, getting a speeding ticket, leaving the stroller in the garage, running over a curb, popping the tire...

But nah, I'm pretty sure it's the Universe.

Friday, August 14, 2009


Now that I am *cough* pregnant (sorry, still have trouble saying that), I often get asked how I'm feeling. Well, just by my mom. But she does ask it often. On a physical level, I have a general sort of distaste for food, although I wouldn't say it's all-out nausea. I know, if only I could bottle that feeling, right? It would have served me much better a year ago when I was trying to lose the baby weight. Well, not really trying to lose it, per se. Just hoping it would kinda fall off on it's own, the way it showed up. It didn't, but that's okay. Well, not really okay. But moving on.

I am also a bit tired, but that could be due to any of several factors. First, Bean has decided to remind us how difficult it is to have a newborn at home by spending the hours of 1:30 am to 3:30 am being ENTIRELY WIDE AWAKE. Which I wouldn't really care about, of course, other than the fact that he demands company. Can't figure out for the life of me what is going on, but it SUCKS. On top of that is the progesterone supplements (Prometrium) that I am taking to help sustain pregnancy for the next 6 weeks, which is likely contributing to my exhaustion. According to, here are the potential side effects of Prometrium:

"Abdominal cramping, back pain, bloating, breast tenderness or pain, chest pain, constipation, coughing, depression, diarrhea, dizziness, emotional instability, fatigue, headache, hot flashes, irritability, joint pain, muscle pain, nausea, night sweats, swelling of hands and feet, upper respiratory infection, urinary problems, vaginal discharge, vaginal dryness, viral infection, vomiting, worry"

It's hard to pick a favorite, but I would have to go with "emotional instability." Which, incidentally, does describe my current state. I mentioned on my other blog that I am relatively calm right now, due to utter and complete denial of my current state of knocked-upped-ness. Which compared to the recent stress of the process of becoming knocked up, is very true. However, I still find myself frequently vacillating between a flare of anger and a rush of tears. Which most recently happened when I started crying as this song came on the radio in the car:

Yes, I actually sobbed listening to a song by a teenager who won American Idol. A song that has absolutely no emotional connection for me, seeing as DH and I have never been prone to fighting in our 13 year relationship. Why does love always feel like a battlefield... you'd better go and get your armor... it just got me for some reason. Right here.

A foil to my battiness, Bean has been his usual happy toddler self. His learning to walk has been the best thing that's ever happened to me. He can actually play independently now... and he has a blast. He walks around the house, talking up a storm (sometimes breaking into a "go go go go go go" or "yesss! yesss! yesss!" complete with fist pumps), chuckling about whatever toddlers find humorous (everything), and flitting from one toy to another.

Here is, imitating his Daddy. Except he's smiling at the lawn mower, which I've never seen DH do.

Potty training is not going so well at this point.

On Wednesday we went to KidsQuest Children's Museum with preschool friends. The exhibits were cool, but it was JAM PACKED. Wall-to-wall people, I could hardly stand it. And then things got worse when we found ourselves embroiled in the Ink Incident of 2009. Think re-entry hand stamps gone wild, permanent black ink on Bean's khaki pants, an "emotionally unstable" pregnant woman, and 4 hours at home spent with rubbing alcohol, Oxiclean, and Spray 'N Wash. The manager did give me four free passes for a future visit, though. You can see, especially in the second picture, how anxious Bean is to return.

On the agenda for this weekend: hours upon hours of Twin Peaks on DVD. And of course, the new episodes of Monk and Psych. You are watching Psych, aren't you? Because it's the best show on television. Which isn't saying much right now, I do realize that. You just have to trust me. It's on Fridays on USA at 10 pm (or 9 pm, depending on where you live). Please watch it, so it doesn't get canceled. For me. Go set your DVR right now. I'll wait.

So yeah, I guess you didn't really need to come back, because I'm out of things to say anyway. We'll talk again next week, after you've watched Psych.

No really, please watch it.

(Now I'm all nervous that it won't be a good episode tonight.)

(But it's unlikely, because they are all so fabulous!)

(I am totally in love with the main character, Shawn.)

(Or is it Sean?)

(Okay, I'll stop now.)

Monday, August 10, 2009

At this rate I'm basically screwed

I've been debating whether or not to blog about my pregnancy over here... ideally I wanted to wait until I hit the second trimester. But really, what's the point? The cat has left the proverbial bag, I actually pinched its butt so it would leap out with a giant MEOW.

But before I go on, I will say that it's really early. Only 3 1/2 weeks, to be precise. Which is sooner than most women even know they are pregnant. I am hopeful, but painfully aware that every moment is fragile at this point. My first ultrasound will be on September 1, and we are praying for a heartbeat. That would not erase all fears, but it would be a good sign. In the meantime, I am constantly running mental diagnostics on myself, wondering if the baby is still okay, how many are in there, girl or boy, did I pee enough today, am I still as bloated (yep!)...

My first clue that I was pregnant: I looked pregnant. I came home from a walking date with my friend last Monday, looked in the mirror... and DEAR GAWD! That belly wasn't there when I left the house that morning! I mean, sure, DH and I had made a batch of his mom's famous 10 Minute Cookies over the weekend. And sure, I had eaten more than my fair share. And the fair shares of eight other people, let's be honest. But come on, this was obscene. I can't believe my friend didn't freak out and scream that I was turning into a giant blueberry like Violet on "Charlie and the Chocolate Factory." I tried to chalk it up to pre-AF bloat, or perhaps the progesterone supplements I've been taking, because I'm a doubter like that. But in the back of my mind, I could here the little voice whispering, "This could be it, chica."

Sure enough, two days and six positive home pregnancy tests later (including one digital that said PREGNANT), I was starting to suspect that I might actually be pregnant. I called my nurse first thing on Wednesday morning. We had a zoo date in Seattle with our preschool pals at 10:30 am that day, and she said I could stop by their office at 9:45 am to have my first of two blood tests. I was only 10 days past ovulation, which is early for a test, but I was anxious to have it done.

Because now we had to leave the house earlier than expected, I frantically grabbed the Bean and all of our crap and flew out the door. To my relief, we made it downtown on time. I parked in a metered lot and stood behind an older man, waiting to pay for my spot at the automated machine. He was having trouble using it, and asked if I would go first so he could watch me. "Of course," I smiled. I opened my purse, and...

... no wallet. In my haste, I had somehow walked out the door with my wallet on the kitchen counter. I have never, ever done that before. ARG!!! What was I going to do for the rest of the day?!

The kind man offered to pay for my parking, God bless him. We took care of both our spaces, and I went into the office for the blood draw. Easy enough! I had a balance to pay, because of course they wanted to drain my bank account in addition to my veins, but fortunately I did have my checkbook.

Then it was off to the zoo. I desperately called a friend on the way there, who withdrew some money from the ATM and lent it to me so I could cover parking, zoo entry fee, and lunch. I felt like a huge dork, but at least a huge dork IN the zoo, instead of banging on the gates with a crying toddler in my arms.

The zoo itself was fine. I was nervous and shaken from the morning's events, but I tried to focus on the animals because Bean didn't give a crap about them, and after all this effort to go to the zoo, at least one of us should look at the chimps, dammit. Then my cell phone rang. It was the nurse, reporting my blood test results.

"You're hcg level this morning was 33.2. Which is lower than we typically like to see, but you did test early."

She instructed me to schedule a follow-up on Friday, to make sure that number had doubled. I thanked her and hung up. The conversation, of course, did nothing to calm my nerves. I was anxious to get home and jump on so I could compare my number to others. Was it actually low, or just low compared to other women's first betas, which usually occur closer to 14 days past ovulation?

Somehow I survived the rest of the zoo, and I raced home. I had finally reached our exit, on the final stretch before I turned into the neighborhood.... and I was pulled over by a cop.

I was apparently going 53 mph in a 35 mph zone. Which I had achieved in only about 30 yards since exiting the highway.

The cop was very nice, I'll give him that. "Can I see your license and registration, ma'am?"

Well, officer, you COULD see my license! If I wasn't a flaming MORON who left it on my kitchen counter! Which is actually right there, inside that house on the corner, the one you could hit with a stone from here, incidentally.


He gave me a ticket for going 10 mph over the speed limit, and didn't write me up for not having my license with me. I explained that I had found out I was pregnant that morning. "Well, that'll mess you up," he chuckled. Ain't that the truth.

I finally got back home. I looked up my hcg level online and was comforted to find that it was nice and high for being only 10 days past ovulation. I called DH to tell him about the ticket and the blood test. He suggested I stay inside for the rest of the day. I complied.

So here I am, at 3 1/2 weeks pregnant, and I have two problems. Apparently, pregnancy brain has set in early. I cannot muster productive thought for more than 20 minutes a day, it fades quickly and I'm forced to rely on post-it notes to remember to do things like get dressed in the morning and close the fridge after taking something out. And seriously, THIS STOMACH! I'm all about the baby bump, I think they are adorable. But what the heck am I supposed to do at 3 1/2 weeks pregnant when I CAN'T BUTTON MY JEANS! I got out my maternity clothes, but it just seems wrong to wear them so early. Suggestions, Internets?

At this rate, I am going to weigh an extra 85 lbs and do nothing more than mumble incoherently by the time this baby is born.

But you know what? I'll take all of it. Gratefully.

Sunday, August 2, 2009

In which Bean and I are both indifferent

As I noticed my post count nearing 200, I started brainstorming fun ideas to mark the occasion. A contest? A giveway? A special post? But the creativity wouldn't come, and although the desire is there, I can't afford to buy anything for a decent giveaway right now. I guess I'm not in a celebratory mood at the moment. So here I am instead, saying...

This is my 200th post.



That's all I got.

Speaking of indifference, Bean and I went blueberry picking on Friday with the MOMS Club. The temperature had gone down from scorching to sweltering, so we decided to venture outside.

When we are at home, Bean is all over the place. He's walking here and there, he's talking nonstop, he's laughing at some unknown joke. But whenever we attend organized events (which is 4-5 times a week), he clams up and clings to his mommy. Not that I don't appreciate the cuddles, but I'm concerned that he's practically scowling in all the pictures. Which all but the last were taken during the 45 seconds he would actually let me put him down.

He thought the blueberries tasted gross, and he was more interested in dumping out the bucket ("uh-oh!") and trying to put the berries back on the trees. We ended up with so few in our bucket that the farm didn't even charge us for them. I only like blueberries if they are baked into a muffin -- with a crumby top, too, please -- so I was okay with that. But it's still important for my sanity for us to get out and about, and I think he'll eventually come around to my attempts at forced socialization, so we keep trying.

And if you'll permit me a bit of randomness, I'm feeling pretty cool (don't laugh!) and wanted to share why. So DH and I finally restored the flow to our Netflix queue by watching "The Curious Case of Benjamin Button." Which wasn't as bad as I had feared, actually. I absolutely bawled at the end, but I'm fairly sure it was in a good way. I mean, heartbreaking but tender, know what I mean? Anyway, we decided to finally dive into the television series "Twin Peaks," which we've been really curious about. It was filmed not too far from Seattle, certainly part of the draw for us.

We were so excited when we turned it on and immediately recognized much of the scenery! It was filmed largely in Snoqualmie and North Bend, and as I'm sure you'll remember, just last month we visited Snoqualmie Falls.

Here is a picture of the Great Northern Hotel from "Twin Peaks," borrowed from a really neat web site called In Twin Peaks.

It's actually called the Salish Lodge & Spa (at least today). Here are two pictures we took last month, when visiting the falls. It doesn't have the same eerie mood, but I think you'll recognize it anyway.

Pretty. Damn. Sweet.

And the show so far... WOW!

For a final bit of randomness, here is Bean in his Gro Baby cloth diaper that my mom got for him. I absolutely love the way it goes on, the aplix (velcro) part is a bit different than other diapers, and it's way cool. I thought I would put the good word out there for the rest of you nuts who shun the 'sposies.