September 29, 2005

Whatever happened to the Way We Weren't?

Strange Dreams: Is this another sign I am a bad Mommy? I have had weird dreams lately, but nothing about the Freeloader. Yeah, early in the pregnancy I had Baby Dreams and they usually involved some form of surrogacy (i.e. me having a baby for Jessica Simpson) or my baby being taken away from in some shape or form. What do I dream about now? iPods - yep. I dreamt last night I had WAY too many iPods and one of them was a teeny, tiny earbud thing called a PeaPod. I think it stems from my newfound obsession with desperately wanting the iPod Nano, even though I HAVE NO BUSINESS OWNING ONE. I already have a regular iPod AND a Shuffle - Greedy Gut that I am.

No More Snore: The bad thing about X being gone is that I miss him - A LOT. The good thing about X being gone is that I can cozily get a good night’s sleep without someone snoring sweet nothings in my ear. I was up at 4:00 am this morning, which will make for an interesting day. Yes, YES, I realize that I am headed down a one-way track to No Sleepdom, but come on - I APPRECIATE the fact that sleep is a precious commidity right now so I am trying to get as much of it as possible.

Yoga Baby: When people ask if the kid is kicking a lot, I answer “Yes”, because that is easier. However, truth be known, what this kid does most is S-T-R-E-T-C-H. I just felt a foot where a foot should never BE, so I swear he’s attempting the downward facing dog RIGHT NOW.

It’s All About Perspective: I bought the cutest maternity shirt WAY back when (April? May?). I ADORED that shirt and wore it constantly. It was too baggy then and actually, is STILL too baggy. However, I hate to wear it NOW because of the very fact that it is baggy and thus, makes me look HUGE. Ironically moronic, I know....I know.

Cribbage: Rumor has it we are receiving the Freeloader's crib TODAY. Since the kid's due date is less than 3 weeks away, this is a good thing, I suppose. I wasn't really stressed about it, but WAS getting extremely irritated with the seller that wasn't responding to my emails in a promptly manner.

Baggage: According to my handy-dandy pregnancy book, I am supposed to be packing a bag right now in anticipation of a 2-3 day jaunt at my local hospital. This is slightly complicated by the fact that my husband is using our "2 Nights" bag and all we have left are the "4-5 Nights" and the "Full Week Plus" bags. I also wonder if I shouldn't be more worried about packing this bag - it seems to be a source of stress for some other pregnant bloggers who are due around the same time as I am. However, it's difficult to get too bent out of shape over packing a bag to go stay somplace that is less than 10 minutes away from my home.

Never was a Streisand Fan: I am nearly finished with the Photo Project - I have had an odd, disjointed week of Memory Lane recaps. Things I had long forgotten about - I got a little teary-eyed running across old photos of friends I’ve grown apart from, deceased relatives, photos from when my parents were still married and we were actually a FAMILY. It’s interesting to ponder all the little tidbits of memories floating around in my head (most shocking newsflash - I was NOT FAT, despite all of Asshole #1's claims to contrarary. Hence the moniker.). Anyway, in retrospect, it was probably a good time to do this Photo Project. I am about to leap into an entirely new life - not just the Freeloader, but some other things going on that I can’t blog about just yet . I would hate to jinx the Something Really Good that is going on with X's company. This Something Really Good may morph into Something Really Great, Yet Sad. Stayed tuned.

September 27, 2005

Which part of “My husband is from India” do people not understand?

Overheard in a doctor’s office waiting room in Olathe, KS:

Nurse: Gesturing to other patient....... She had a baby that was as bald as could be!
Other Patient: Smiling proudly.......Yep!
Me: Well, my husband is from India, so our kid will most likely have a full head of hair.
Other Patient: Oh, you NEVER know!

It amazes me how often I hear this whenever I play yet another round of “What Will My Baby Look Like?”. Did people not get the basic of genetics in school? You know - the whole Peas n’ Mendel Lecture dutifully doled out in junior high? While some Indians and Pakistanis have light/hazel eyes, X has informed me no one in his family has light eyes. In short, if X and I have a bald-headed, blue-eyed baby it will be like winning the PowerBall. After all, we are gonna be fucking RICH after we sell our story to Lifetime television for what will surely be a Movie of the Week titled “My Baby was Switched at Birth”.

HELLO, people. INDIA. The land of Ghandi, Mother Theresa and chicken curry.

September 26, 2005

Are you backed up?

No - this will not be about the Joys of Fiber or methods of snaking out your personal plumbing. This is an exceedingly tiresome and boring post where my Evil Past as an information systems auditor rears its ugly head and cannot be contained. I like to claim that I was not much of an accountant, but I fear that maybe I was more of one than I care to admit. You see - I have a dirty secret. I back up my computer files. Faithfully. One of the distressing things about this Mac, is that I am still trying to figure out the best way to back up my photos - I am not impressed with the current way. This subject has come up recently as I have been telling people about my huge photo project where I am taking every loose photo hanging around and sticking it on blank pages - nothing remotely close to Real Scrapbooking, I should stress. I am merely trying to get the photos lassoed into actual albums with actual titles and actual dates (Rancid Tangent: Is this normally what happens when you have kids? The strong desire to have things be documented for them in case you are dead?). When I mention this project to people, I am quick to point out that I really prefer digital photos and digital albums - since I don't want it to appear that I have joined the Cult of Real Scrapbooking. Besides, how often do you truck out your physical photo albums for visitors anyway? I don’t. And I DO tend to look at my digital albums quite often. Furthermore, I would MUCH prefer to get a link to a friend’s digital album as well. Then, I can go out periodically and see what they and their progeny have been up to. Anyway, what has shocked me the MOST about this topic of conversation is how many times someone has commented “Oh, but then your computer crashes and POOF! all your photos are gone!”. HUH? Seriously - am I the only person backing up their files? Here’s how anal I am - since I am not working, I have no “2nd site of backup”, meaning - the only place my files are located are at HOME - therefore, I need to look into a safety deposit box or a fireproof box. When you have devoted as much time to photos and MP3s as I have, you wouldn’t want your backups to be stored in a non-fireproof situation, either. Okay - end of rant. In short, if you are not backing up your files - ask yourself , WHY NOT?

The Weekend at Rancid le Manse: It was a good one - I finished my sock class, but alas, not the actual sock. I have knitted the cuff and turned the heel. While I am not sure that I will be knitting a lot of socks (we'll see how I feel after knitting the 2nd sock of the pair!), I can report that learning this new skill was FUN. It was very, very cool to see this thing take shape. Later that evening, X and I went for a nice dinner of Chinese dumplings. He has been gone so much, it was wonderful to have a quiet dinner just the two of us. Sunday was spent puttering around the house with the TV blaring in the background to the tune of NFL (Note to the little Freeloader: You MUST like NFL Football and College Basketball. Don't bother coming out until you have learned the rules for both and have gained an adequate appreciation. And no, we will NOT love you for "who you are". Comprende?)

Freeloader Update: Nothing much has been going on, now I am 37 weeks along now and am considered “full-term”. Therefore, anything new and unusual is encountered with a newfound suspicion discovered this very weekend. As late as last week, new aches and pains were the course du jour - NOW, each new twinge is pondered quite closely for its 1st Stage of Labor Potential. It’s quite irritating. My Free Time is dwindling so rapidly, I don’t want to squander a precious second of it - my To Do list is still pretty long, although I have made damned good progress on it. I have a doctor’s appointment today, so we will see what she says.

September 22, 2005

What Made YOU the person you are now?

This week, I embarked on what I have been calling the Great Photo Project of 2005. While I never made a great accountant, there are certain qualities about me that could be considered, well, ANAL. However, I would argue that I really prefer things to be organized simply because I am ultimately LAZY - I hate to search for things. If they are organized, there is no searching. See my point? Anyway, this Project consisted of me buying a bare minimum of scrapbooking supplies (album, adhesive and blank pages), then sorting through all my loose photos hanging out in drawers, boxes, etc. I loosely organized them chronologically (i.e. grade school, junior high, high school, college, adult) and I am sticking them on blank pages to put in the album. I just want the things in a book - I am not doing fancy cut-outs! REAL scrapbooking is not for the weak of heart, folks and I know my personality would implode if I were to ever attempt such a hobby. I like my hobbies to be the relaxing sort - like knitting or reading. Anyway, I came across a few photos that seemed pertinent, somehow. Thought I would share.

Why do NOW, what you can do NEVER?

When I first came across this photo, I thought “Aw, there is me with my first kitty EVER, MaryAnn. Upon closer observation, I realized something. That was the infamous “franklin stove” in the background! That stove lived with us in no less than FOUR houses, yet was never hooked up and never had a fire built in it. I KID YOU NOT. My parents have this incredible propensity to just not get things done - they still procrastinate horribly on such projects and tend to let things fall apart a bit before they fix them. This scarred me and I try very hard now to be a good homeowner and not let things get so bad.

Born to be Wild.....

This was my first bike ever! Judging from the house the pic was taken (the beauty of having lived in so many houses as a child, it was relatively easily to date most of the photos), I was about 5-6 years old when this photo was taken. I remember getting the bike and the thrill of learning to ride it. If you can learn how to ride a bike on a GRAVEL road, you are ONE TOUGH KID, let me tell you. I remember the thrill of being able to get to places faster. What is shocking to me now, is that even at such a young age, I will still running around the neighborhood - except in this case, each neighbor owned a minimum of 15-20 acres. When I drive through that area now, I can’t believe my parents let me go that far from our house unattended. Granted, child molesters weren’t lurking in every corner back in the mid=1970s, but the copperheads and rattlers certainly were. Anyway, the picture was a stark reminder of how independent I was, even at such a young age.

Home Beautiful? How about just Home?

Ah, Christmas. Every Christmas was SO exciting. We would traipse through our own property and select the perfect tree. It was such a magical time and I was certain we surely had what was the most beautiful tree in all of Kansas. Um, look closely at that picture. How delusional could a 6 year old be? In my defense, I don’t think I knew better. My parents were hippies - our house was littered with macrame for cryin’ out loud! For the record, my dad STILL gets the ugly ass trees and declares them to be the best ever. This is why, as hard as I try, my house will never be a showcase. It’s just not in my genes.

Years of Cosmo Rehab STILL didn't help......

In my 20s, I read Cosmopolitan faithfully. Pictures like this should have made me realize I was just wasting my money. There was no hope. In the 80s, I would desperately try to follow every fashion trend and would look terribly ridiculous. Torn sweatshirt? I just looked like a homeless person. Spiral perm? Hair would never take them and I would end up with silly looking waves. Finally, by my late 20s, the most I learned from Sex and the City was that while the magazine was useless for the likes of me, the martini was mighty tasty.

September 21, 2005

Why does growing old have to suck?

Here’s hoping the Freeloader takes after his daddy: While I have dodged the Stretch Mark Bullet thus far, I am now the proud owner of an angry red slash from my IRON. Yep, I was merrily ironing away yesterday and my big ole baby belly GOT IN THE WAY.

Darwin be damned: Maybe our kid is screwed after all. X actually asked me late last night if I thought the kid was going to be born in the 1st two weeks of October or not (my due date is 10/15). I have tried to explain to him that a due date is merely an estimate. For all the baby stories I can give him of kids coming early, I can provide an equal amount of anecdotes proving that kids come LATE, too. Granted, I can’t blame X. Right now, he is under more than one gun -- his company has Something Really Good going on that may morph into Something Really Great - the very future of his company (and our livelihood) depends on this Something Really Great. Since X is the CEO of said company, it is slightly imperative that he be in Reston, VA in person as the company is actually headquartered THERE and not HERE where my pregnant ass is physically located. However, I have a strict policy that requires the father of my children be present for their births, so it is equally imperative that he be in town when I go into labor. And no, I am not mad. I can’t help but laugh when X asks these ridiculous questions regarding the potential birth date of our child - like I am keeping it a secret from him or something.

Even the Westin would suck if you were held captive: Growing old bites. My 84-year-old Great Aunt P is finding this out herself. Frankly, she can’t live by herself anymore. She frequently falls, doesn’t cook correctly for herself and just can’t make rational decisions. She got so weak and sick that she was admitted to the hospital last month and went to a nursing home for rehab. She is doing AWESOME now and of course, wants to go home. However, the nursing home she is in totally KICKS ASS (I have stayed in FAR WORSE hotels). Seriously, the place is really, really nice and even Aunt P admits this. In fact, the place has a waiting list a mile long, but my Aunt P got in because she has connections. I should also mention that members of my family don’t just go to nursing homes to waste away. In my family, you are guaranteed at least 1-2 visitors daily since we have the sheer numbers to keep the visitors log filled quite nicely. Anyway, she wants to go home and I certainly can’t blame her. It’s a very distressing situation with no real solution - all complicated by the fact that Great Aunt P is a sister-in-law of my grandma’s, her only son is tragically died a few years back and WE ARE IT for her. However, when you aren’t a blood relative, you can’t make decisions - regardless of how much you love that person. While Aunt P is accepting of a shorter life span if she gets to live it out in her home, it’s worrying my 82-year-old Normal Olathe Grandma into an early grave. At least Aunt P has a fabulous sense of humor - when I went to see her yesterday, she was proudly wearing her “Exercise Smells and Life is a Terminal Illness Anyway” t-shirt. I am not sure what the solution is, but it makes me wish desperately for a society where old folks are allowed to age gracefully and with dignity.

Rancid Review: I watched How I Met Your Mother (CBS, 7:30pm CDT Mondays) last night. VERY GOOD. It’s a story told backward, of sorts. It’s presented as if a father is telling his children the story of how he met their mother. The casting is great with Neil Patrick Harris as sort of a showcase, I never watched Doogie Howser, but did become a Harris fan when I watched one of his other sitcoms (the underappreciated Stark Raving Mad). In short, Harris takes the cake. If the storylines and the wittywriting keep up to par, this may be Harris’ starring vehicle. Alyson Hannigan (from “Buffy”) was also a great casting choice. If you missed last night’s episode, you can easily pick this show up next Monday. As with typical sitcoms, missing an episode or two won’t throw you completely off track. Finally, I was VERY impressed with the clever little twist thrown in at the very end of the episode. I am definitely looking forward to next week’s episode soI give it 4 out of 5 Rancid Sheep.

I also watched Out of Practice (CBS, 8:30pm CDT Mondays) last night. Stockard Channing and Henry Winkler play two doctors who are divorced with three adult children. One of the running gags, is that 2 of the adult children are actual doctors and the 3rd child is psychotherapist or something. It was pretty fun watching and I will watch it again. I am not sure yet if this will last the whole season on my DVR, so I may update this review. For now, it gets 3 out of 5 Rancid Sheep. Frankly, I am so desperate for an old-fashioned sitcom, I have been getting my hopes up pretty high this season. So far, I haven't been disappointed!

September 19, 2005

Do you really want to hear me wax poetic on the joys of being unemployed??

These are the days when I fear for the future of this blog. I haven’t got much to write about and am not feeling very witty today. Unfortunately, being extremely gratified and contented with your Life Situation does NOT make for exciting posts. My new position as Trophy Wife and Purveyor of Food is actually very emotionally satisfying. Seriously!! sigh

Freeloader Update: I had a doctor’s appointment this morning. Total weight gain? 19 lbs. Not bad! Particularly in light of the fact that I have 4-5 weeks to go AND I just got weighed after TWO pastry-laden weekends. Cinnamon rolls from Napolean’s have been my breakfast du jour as of late, so 19 lbs. ROCKS in my book and nearly qualifies as a tiny miracle. I have been craving sweets for the past few weeks and that is ODD. My usual culinary desires range in the venues of Mexican and Indian (Read: SPICY). Anyway, not much else happened in doctor’s appointment - besides focusing on ME, we actually discussed the little Freeloader. We will be circumcising the little guy (yes, it’s primarily cosmetic, but so are braces. We might even cut his hair, too! GASP.) and we will be doing vaccinations (Rancid Tangent: Frankly, I think NOT doing vaccinations is unconscionable from a public health and safety factor. I had a classmate in 2nd grade DIE from chickenpox, so don’t bother trying to convince me vaccines are bad.) Finally, my doctor started the “fun process” of checking me for dilation. I’ll leave it at that - those of you NOT in the know, don’t WANT to know (believe me) and those of you IN the know, ALREADY know and don’t need an explanation. Nothing much is going on down there and the Freeloader is securely encamped in his Kiddie Condo and appears to be working on building an additional wing. That’s fine - I have so much to DO (books to read, TV shows to watch, a play to see) that I am fine if he keeps hanging out. I am drawing the line at high speed Internet, though. He can wait til October.

This Ain't No MTV Crib, either: Our crib has not arrived, my due date is less than 4 weeks away and oddly, I am not stressed. I AM irritated, though because we paid for the damned thing! I can rest assured my kid already has a place to sleep, but it pisses me off that I shelled out money for something back in JULY that I haven't yet received.

Kid Free Zone Violation: Friday ended up getting totally wiped out - a friend of mine who lives in another town had car trouble while in Kansas City, so she needed to hang out at my house while her car got some emergency repairs. Therefore, I spent the entire day with this friend and her 2 kids (ages 4 and 1.5). OMIGOD. By the end of the day, I was left wondering “What the FUCK was I thinking?” - and HER KIDS WERE GOOD. They weren’t bratty in the least and were just very, very busy. I think the worst is that my friend doesn’t as much baby talk as much as holds ENTIRE CONVERSATIONS in baby talk. It was very distressing. Fortunately, the perfect antidote was a lovely breakfast the next day with Goofy Girl and Goofy Junior. It was like a soothing balm to the soul to see that yes, toddlers can handle situations without being given a “Baby Code word” for everything. So, in the end, I guess I can handle a Freeloader after all.

Knit Wit: I haven’t taken a knitting class since early February during my first trimester. It seemed only fitting to take one in my LAST trimester. I decided to take a sock class. YES, I realize Target sells socks quite cheaply and NO, I don’t plan on knitting a bunch of socks. I did want to learn the techniques and skills used in knitting socks, though. Some people in the Knitting Community are just CRAZY about knitting socks and I wanted to see what the big deal was. So far, I only have about 1.5 inches knitted - I will post a picture when I get more progress done. Finally, this week, I am seaming the damned sweater together. I knitted all the pieces of a sweater together in FEBRUARY before morning sickness took over - I just need to sew it together. While knitting the actual sweater was not painful, this gross procrastination of FINISHING it has made me realize I am just not a Sweater Knitter.

Rancid Review: This week is Fall 2005 TV Premiere week and since there is so very little else going on in my life right now, I am taking it upon myself to review some of the shows coming out. I did some careful reviewing of magazines and websites to see what was worth checking out first (I don’t have THAT much free time!) Let’s see if you agree. I did catch The Showbiz Show with David Spade (Thursdays, 9:30pm CDT). In short, if you liked Spade’s “Hollywood Minute” skit on Saturday Night Live OR you enjoy some witty celebrity snarking, you can just stop reading here. WATCH THIS SHOW. I had reasonable expectations for this show and they were met. The program starts off very much like the “Hollywood Minute” spots with just the news briefs. The rest of the show is filled with fake trailers for real movies, fake public service announcements titled “What You Should Know” delivered by the likes of Rob Lowe (HILARIOUS), and other “news-like” segments. Definitely worth checking out. This has made my Regular Recordings on the DVR and I give it 4 out of 5 Rancid Sheep.

Doesn’t He Learn?: So far, the Drunken North Side Neighbor (DNSN) has not complained about our cat Harry straying into our yard. She has even gone as far as to WAVE all friendly-like when I see her now. Not sure if 1) Harry is avoiding her yard or 2) DNSN doesn’t remember our little episode a few months back. or 3) DNSN is afraid yet again to confront us. According to the Previous Owner of our house, the DNSN’s Drinking Night is on Tuesdays and therefore, I try to keep Harry inside for as long as possible on those nights. I am relieved so far that it seems to be working. However, one thing I wish Harry WOULD learn is that he does NOT get to come into the house to enjoy his little “treats” he happens to catch. While I am perfectly fine with his hunting skills, it is still a bit disconcerting when I go to the front door and it looks he has sprouted little rodent legs from his mouth.

September 15, 2005

What should I do when I can't think of a title?

I had a lovely visit with my friend yesterday. M is the sort of gal that is very relaxed as evidenced by the lack of distress emanating from her as her big lug of a dog kept licking her 2 week old baby's head. It was the funniest damned sight because her dog is a big goofy Lab (with a heart of gold) and her daughter is so, so tiny (she’s only about 7 pounds at this point!). It looked like the dog’s tongue could have wrapped around that baby’s head a few times. I was impressed with M’s demeanor because believe me, MY demeanor was not nearly as laid back when that dog tried to lick my BUTT. Anyway, it was a great visit and no labor-related horror stories were told. In fact, I think her experience is a testament to M’s positive attitude. She was induced after being a week over due and for those not in the know, Pitocin (the drug used to induce labor) often creates stronger contractions than “nature-created” ones AND they come more quickly together, one after the other, with NO BREAKS. Even after that, M still said that “labor wasn’t that bad. Just real painful.” Which, is what I pretty much expect from labor, quite frankly. Finally, the one thing that struck me most about M’s baby is how freakin’ SMALL she was. Both of my nephews were HUGE - we never even got to see them at 7 pounds except for sonogram pictures!

Speaking of contractions, I haven’t had ANY PAINFUL ONES YET, although I am not sure if this is good or not. Fortunately, my Braxton-Hicks contractions are the "tightening" kind where I feel like I am carrying a basketball around instead of a baby. None have been painful. Of course, that leads me to wonder exactly how long this kid thinks he gets to camp out in his personal Kiddie Condo. I hate to break it to the little guy, but the rent is coming due. He’s got 4 weeks - maybe 5 weeks and then the jig is up.

X and I go to our last baby-related class tonight. It is the Infant Care one where we learn how to hold, swaddle, bathe and diaper the little monster. I already know how to do much of that stuff - after all, being the oldest of four kids , having two nephews, and being one of the last of my social group to have a kid kind of helped with my knowledge base a bit. However, X knows NONE of this stuff except the “holding”. As with most things, it is best if this knowledge flows to X via another route besides me. If I am the messenger, it just sounds like Nagging - if a nurse practioner is the messenger, it sounds like Good Practices. So there you have it.

The one disappointment is that I won’t get to see Survivor live tonight. I had hoped to have a little party because as I mentioned before, one of the contestants, Danielle (or Danni, I guess) is from the town where I went to high school. She is a pretty scrappy gal and even though I HATE Tonganoxie and harbor no fond memories of that claustrophobic small town, I will still be rooting for her.

Rancid Review -- Dem "Bones": I did happen to catch Fox's new TV series "Bones" this week (7pm CDT, Tuesdays). The basic setup is that a forensic anthropologist helps out the FBI with cases by examining skeletons and such. While I do like David Boreanaz and Emily Deschanel, the opening scene made me dubious that I would like what I was seeing. The very first shot had a sub-title of “Dulles Airport, Washington, D.C.” and showed a plane landing with the US Capitol in the background. What is wrong with that picture?? Dulles is in a VIRGINIA suburb and is nowhere near all the “good stuff” in DC - in fact, even in light traffic, it is still a good 30-45 minutes away. Furthermore, the scenes portraying the DC areas seemed wrong - as if they were driving in the wrong direction or something. I can’t pinpoint why that bothered me, but it seemed the show was very intent in impressing upon us that this show is based in D.C, so therefore, we SHOULD be impressed. The plot itself wasn’t attention grabbing, either - it was a total Chandra Levy knock-off and wasn’t very compelling. Don’t get me wrong - I LOVE dramatic cheesy tripe myself, but really, "CSI: Original Recipe" is about all I can take on a weekly basis. Finally, the character setup was so typical - the gal scientist is a workaholic who is closed off emotionally and the guy FBI agent is going to be the one to “open up her heart”. YAWN. In short, I give "Bones" 1 Rancid Sheep. If I am home, I will tune in, but this show didn’t make it to the DVR regular recordings list.

More reviews to come next week - it's premiere week!

September 14, 2005

What, no fucking ziti now?

One of my very favorite Sopranos quotes. It came to mind this morning as I was preparing Average Jane’s recipe for Baked Ziti . I am going to visit a friend who just had a baby and this was the perfect dish to take. This dish has saved my ass so many times! Why? Well, sometimes it is difficult to know what to cook for Americans - I am most comfortable making Indian food, but many Americans find Indian food to be too funky or too spicy. Conversely, when we have Indians over for dinner, I feel silly making THEM Indian food - you like to treat your guests to something different than they can cook themselves, right? Therefore, this ziti has been the perfect solution. Furthermore, this recipe can easily be tailored to your guest's individual tastes - spicy vs. non-spicy, vegetarian vs. "food-with-a-face". It just so happens that my friend is BOTH Indian and American (she was born here, but her parents are from India), and she loves spicy AND meat, so this batch of ziti was particularly fun. I got to throw in lots of red pepper and turkey sausage which makes it so yummy that you want to marry the damned thing. Finally, there is something about taking a huge pan of steaming ziti out of the oven that screams to your guests "Welcome! Have a seat and dig in!"

Anyway, I am looking forward to seeing my friend - she has a very positive, relaxed attitude towards the whole baby thing. Also, I know I won't be subjected to any miserable labor stories, thank god.

Have a good Wednesday!

September 13, 2005

Can We Talk?

I am in a weird blogging funk. What do I write about? Things are going so damned GOOD for me right now which doesn’t provide nearly as interesting of blogging material as you would think . Why? Because you end up sounding like a braggard. Look at me! Lucky me! Nanny, nanny, boo, boo! Or even worse, you end up sounding like a sappy sentimental. shudder

Rancid Review: I watched the series premiere of Martha Stewart’s new show, Martha . It’s a very different show than her old one, that’s for sure. Martha was actually JOKING with her guests, poking fun at HERSELF, and interacting with a LIVE STUDIO AUDIENCE. In short, I am sold on this show and it’s been promoted on the DVR as a regular recording. Definitely worth checking out if you are a closet Martha fan like I am. AND definitely more inspiring than that suburban freakshow Dr. Phil has going on. I will certainly be watching the Martha-ized version of Apprentice, so look for a review of that, as well.

Rancid Rant: Speaking of television........I love TV and am unapologetic about it. In the past, I was not that picky about TV but realize that I will need to tighten up my standards since Free Time is going to be a precious commodity in about 4 weeks or so. So, I have carefully reviewed the new shows coming out next week and have narrowed the list down to the select few that I will be watching. I have high hopes for some of them. However, as much as I love TV, I love books even more. I have been fascinated by the amount of people that have felt compelled to inform me that “I won’t have time to read once the Freeloader comes along”. Granted, I won’t be able to read AS MUCH when the little guy arrives, I find it hard to believe that I won’t have time to read at all. If that were indeed the case, then my priorities are definitely out of whack. The first to go would be TV, for sure - I also have several other hobbies and activities that would bite the dust before I start giving up books. I have known people in the past who have told me they just don’t have time to read, but yet, mysteriously were not behind on their TV shows. No, I am not judging and I don’t care if they were watching TV instead of reading - that's not the point. I just think that people need to be cognizant of the fact that they are making CHOICES and to quit whining about them. In short, I wish they would quit telling ME what my new priorities will be. Besides, of the many, many things that my own mother complained about regarding her maternal responsibilities during the LONG 18 years I lived with her, not reading was NOT one of them.

Time Warp: Um, you always hear pregnant chicks complain about how time seems to drag. I don't get it - for me, time is flying. TOO FAST. I still have books to read, a play to see, a museum to visit, lunches to eat, plants to re-pot, an icemaker to install, a sweater to seam, two rooms left to organize, photos to put in albums - the list goes on. On the one hand, if the Freeloader was a week late, that would be GREAT, but on the other hand, I really wouldn't mind if he came early enough to make it to Boo at the Zoo . How lame is THAT? I can't help it because I am SO excited about having a kid for this Halloween - one of my very favorite holidays. He already has a costume!

Jerry Springer Ain’t Got Nothin’ On Me: Last night, we had what will surely go down in the Rancid Raves Family Lore as Cagey's White Trash Moment. It started when I insisted that X and I take a pediatric CPR class, which was last night. Why? Not because I am all worried about safety and that, but because it seemed to be the COMMON SENSE thing to do - right? X was not happy about the class (it WAS during Monday Night Football, after all) and kept ribbing me about how paranoid I was about it all. Going home from the class the ribbing commenced again. I got SO FURIOUS, that I pulled the car over, got out and started walking home. Yeah for me! How COOL was I for losing my temper? BOY, I really showed HIM, flip-flopping away in my sandals - - - right? Hmmm. Not so much, honestly. Anyway, I did eventually get back in the car. The one good thing about arguing with X is that we make up very easily and move on. We were already laughing about it this morning. The End.

September 12, 2005

Grease. It does a body good??

My Own Damned Shrieking Shack: The weekend was pretty peaceful. X came in early Saturday and doesn’t leave until Tuesday. It’s long enough of a stay where he heads back out again just as I have grown weary of the Trail of Crep he leaves in his wake as he meanders through the house. I maintain that there is no shriller shriek than that of a pregnant chick stubbing her toe on a suitcase that mysteriously landed in the middle of her living room.

The Legend of the Grange Pup: I went to our county’s Old Settler parade this weekend with my dad. It was so cool to just hang out with him by myself - we rarely get time with just the two of us. My dad is such a history buff that any outing with him turns into a history lesson - regardless if you want it or not. This parade, I learned that my grandma’s family didn’t come to this town in the 1910s, like I had always thought, but actually came in the 1860s. Unfortunately, longevity doesn’t always equal posterity - our family name could hardly be thought illustrious since my great-grandpa and his 4 brothers were what could only be considered as the “town drunks”.* I also learned that Old Settler’s LITERALLY used to be an “old settler’s” gathering. All the original settler’s of the town would gather annually in the town center square, people who had moved away would come back to visit, and they would all bring a covered dish. Finally, I always get the Legend of the Grange Pup (a long diatribe from my dad at how he has eaten one every year of his life from when he could eat solid foods, except for the few years he lived in Boston and Vietnam, he recounts bitterly - more so for the fact that he missed out on Grange Pups!). Anyway, a Grange Pup is basically a corn dog, but the batter is a long-held secret by the folks, Kansas State Grange , that make them. They are heaven on a stick. I declared this to be the best parade EVER because since I am pregnant, I let myself have TWO. Poor little Freeloader - he didn’t move around that much the rest of the day - I guess he couldn’t get his legs and arms moving against the tidal wave of grease that surely came his way. It was a great day - much like a balm for the soul, a little. We did the exact same routine as last year (parade, Grange Pups, car show) and there IS something soothing about that. Even BeelzeBush can’t ruin THIS, surely.

At Least My Baby Daddy Has a Job and Can Keep His Pants Hiked Up: I am so sick of the glorification of Britney Spears and her FederFetus. It’s bad enough that she is stealing my glory but I would be horrified if the Freeloader and FederFetus end up sharing the same birthday. There is something wholy disconcerting about the entire concept of being in labor at the same time as her.

New Rule: I must limit the time I spend listening to Bill Maher’s newest book New Rules: Polite Musings from a Timid Observer - I start giggling so hard that Braxton Hicks keeps rearing his ugly head even more so than usual - I think I am only allowed like 5 contractions per hour at this point. If you like Bill Maher and you like his New Rule segment on his excellent show HBO show, you would definitely LOVE this book. I purchased mine via the iTunes store which was scary easy.

I Wanna iPod Until iPop: I want the new iPod nano so bad it hurts. I even dreamed about it last night. I have the Shuffle and earlier this year even traded in my 1st Gen iPod for the newest Gen iPod. What is wrong with me? If I didn’t know better, I would think I was just a Greedy Gut instead of a mere Gadget Junkie. Good grief.

*This is the same great-grandpa that was a bootlegger during the Prohibition. Something that while I think is very cool, my grandma is STILL ashamed of it and will rarely speak of it to this day. History is truly in the eye of the beholder, eh?

September 8, 2005

How easy am I to please?

I woke up at 6:30am today - no reason, no alarm clock. The irony is not lost upon me that after years of beating down a snooze button, NOW I can't sleep in, even though I have no reason to get up so early.

Anyway, I enjoyed my coffee (Note to the Mommy Patrol: WITH caffeine and SUGAR. Bite me.) and my latest celebrity rag on the deck. It was beautiful - the bugs weren't even awake yet. Now, I am caught up on the burning passions of Brad and Angelina, the latest status of the FederFetus (Britney is having a BOY! What? You didn't know? Didn't CARE?), and apparently Lindsey Lohan's parents are getting a divorce and she is quite distraught over the whole matter (GASP). Furthermore, Nicole Ritchie lost TEN more pounds. You go, girl! Collar bones are IN, girlfriend.

As I was relaxing and taking a moment to savor and appreciate how darn good I have it (warm bed, running water, family is SAFE and sound from BeelzeBush*), I heard the distant sound of a drum. Anyone who has ever been in a marching band KNOWS, hell, FEELS that sound in your very heart. First, all you can catch is the "bum bum da bum" of the drum and then gradually you hear the brass (usually the tuba and trombones first, then the trumpets) - finally the woodwinds come into earshot. It's hard to explain how a marching band can STILL bring tears to my eyes to this day. So, I rushed** out to the front yard with coffee in hand. You see, I am on the "marching practice path" for one of our junior high bands - I was delighted to discover this last year, but always had to keep to the routine to get ready for work (refer to "pounding of the snooze button" comment earlier). This year, I got to enjoy it. And appreciate that YES, life will go on and YES, everything will be okay (eventually) and YES, we can survive another 3+ years of this administration.

Oh, and I'll be DAMNED if they weren't playing "Eye of the Tiger". If they would have broke out in "25 or 6 to 4", I think I would have burst into tears on the spot.

*My political transformation is complete, folks. I voted for BeelzeBush in 2000 and wholeheartedly supported him. I even supported him at first when he went into Iraq. But I voted for Kerry in 2004 out of desperation and alas, my love affair with the Republican party is SO over. Alanis Morrissette's song "You outta know" could be for the entire country at this point as much as that administration has so screwed us.

**Please note that all references to "rushing" are relative when you are 8+ months pregnant. Leave your stop watches in your pockets, please.

September 7, 2005

How stupid am I?


My doctor is a sensible woman. Unfortunately, I am the variety known as “idiot”. All along, my doctor has maintained that I could lift things as long as it felt comfortable. I guess she trusted that I would be responsible and LISTEN TO MY BODY. Yeah, sure - I was listening yesterday as my body protested when I hauled around 3 boxes of books. I was even listening as I packed up 1 box and 2 bags of clothes for charity, THEN schlepped 2 bags of clothes for dry cleaning. No, I am not injured but I was incredibly sore last night - getting in and out of bed required incredible reserves of pain tolerance.

So, I have a doctor’s appointment in an hour and I have to wonder - do I confess? Can a fetus be taken away from its idiot mother? Do I not get a chance to prove myself AFTER he is born?

Oh, and where is my husband, you ask? X is out of town, working his ass off and has been gone since Sunday. It’s certainly not his fault he married an impatient moron.

Update: Went to the doctor's this morning and confessed my sins. A few "Hail Baby's" later and a firm admonishment to be more careful, I was given a pass - particularly in light of the fact that the clothing is being sent to Houston for the hurricane victims. Also, I have only gained 16 pounds for this weigh-in! With 5 weeks or so left, I am doing pretty good in that department. Furthermore, it looks like the little guy has FINALLY turned - the doctor had to find the heartbeat in a completely new area this time around. I wouldn't be surprised if he had turned last night, actually. I tried a recommended "laying down" position for turning breech babies and the rest of the night the kid was wiggling in all sorts of wonky ways. Regardless, I don't care what did it - I was starting to get worried that he hadn't turned yet so I am relieved.

Next Up: I need to start deciding on music for the labor/delivery room. I am thinking of just taking the iPod in and I can't help but think with glee that this is my BIG CHANCE to subject X to hours upon hours of Pink Floyd.

Careful with that Axe, Eugene.

September 5, 2005

Can't we all just get along?

First, New Orleans: I haven’t posted lately because I had nothing of value to add with this whole New Orleans disaster. It is incredibly sad and frustrating that much of the media is focusing on the Blame Game at this point. Yeah, let’s just point fingers instead of coming up with realistic plans to get the people out of there. THAT’S helpful. Who is to blame? Of course, FEMA, BeelzeBush - the usual suspects. I think we also need to look at the mayor, the governor, the city itself that chose to ignore the looming problem and ultimately the people themselves that are SHOOTING AT RESCUE WORKERS. HUH? THAT, I don’t get. Someone is coming in to help you and you SHOOT AT THEM? The whole thing is incredibly depressing - the disaster itself AND the reactions of everyone involved. That, and of course, the very thought that we can live in a country like America and still be utterly abandoned like those people were. Truly distressing.

Oops, He Did it Again: GOOD GOD, BeelzeBush gets to nominate ANOTHER Supreme Court Justice? This and the New Orleans/FEMA fiasco so close together brought me to tears yesterday (Confession: Big Lie - I was tearful all last week) It’s days like these that India looks better and better.

Okay, enough ranting and now back to our originally scheduled programming titled "The Trite Details of My Meaningless, Over-Priviliged Life...........

I dedicate this Labor Day post to the little Freeloader - the apple of my eye, the sworn enemy of my bladder. I love you, little guy!

Where We Go Through The Laborious Process of Childbirth Prep 101: X and I went to a Childbirth prep class on Saturday ALL DAY LONG. 2,486 “hee hees” and 3,564 “haw haws” later, I think we have come to the conclusion we ARE HAVING A BABY. It’s one thing to stack diapers, wash adorable miniature outfits and stock up on baby wipes. It’s another thing to MIMIC LABOR. I think it hit home for X, as well. We are usually reticent in the Public Displays of Affection department, but even he was Mr. Snuggly all day and now he is Mr. Be Careful whenever I do anything. Furthermore, I had a weird flashbolt of understanding at the beginning of class. As the teacher was explaining different methods for pain management and relaxation, I realized I have used those very methods for over 20 years. Who knew that years of orthodontia would have prepared me for this? I honed the fine art of “focal points” and relaxation breathing in high school while trapped for hours in Dr. Brown’s Chair of Evil. I STILL remember exactly the zig zag details of the wallpaper. Will labor be worse than orthodontia? OF COURSE, but it’s comforting to know that I am already familiar with some tools to help me through the process.

Where We Decide What to Do-ula: We are considering hiring a doula. At this point, it will only be X and I in the labor room. We are ON OUR OWN, folks! X has finally accepted the fact that my mother will not be a help during this process. During my own sister’s labor, my sister reported that my mother “sat in a corner and looked upset the whole time.” I do NOT need THAT and therefore, my mother will be in the lobby. I am leaning towards not doing the doula. Truth be known, I have my eye on getting a new wardrobe in the future. Women have been giving birth for millenia without doulas and I am confident that I can, too. However, I love X all the more for suggesting it and trying to talk me into it.

Where I Redeem MYSELF: The Junk Room/Baby Room is now officially a Baby Junk Room! Meaning: All the stuff in the room is the BABY’S junk! Yippee! I did break down and decorate a little bit- we have coordinated wall hangings, window valance and a matching lamp. Once we set up the crib (it arrives in 2-3 weeks), we are DONE.

Where She Just Can’t Get it Through Her Head: Even now, as I mix my pomegrante-mango juice with Perrier, I can’t help but think “Damn, a shot of vodka would top this off quite nicely.”

Where I’m My Own Paparazzi: As a reward for buying the Ridiculous TV, the store gave us a rebate in the form of store coupons. Since electronic stores don’t sell anything baby-useful such as diapers, strollers, etc, it necessitated my buying another Adult Toy for myself. DAMN, eh? POOR ME. So, I carefully researched digital camcorders, found an acceptable one that the coupons could buy, and of course, went OVER. It irked me that a freakin’ BAG and firewire cable weren’t included - they always GET YOU. Anyway, I have had several people ask if we will be recording the little Freeloader’s arrival. Um, let it be known that Jesus didn’t record HIS miracles and I certainly won’t be recording MINE.