Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Ouch

Ok, the baby is quickly wearing out his welcome in my uterus. I've gone ahead and rolled up the welcome mat because I think I cracked a rib this morning. I was getting out of bed in my usual awkward, oversized belly kind of way when I heard a loud pop and suddenly couldn't breathe. There were all these sharp, shooting pains and then all this really loud profanity! Yeah, that was coming from me. I'm sure Brad considered it one of the top 5 most relaxing ways to wake up in the morning. The poodles looked unphased.

After finally catching my breath, I thought I would put heat on it and give it 30 minutes to shake off. When I decided to get up I couldn't get out of bed without Brad's help. That's when we decided to call the doctor's office. I talked to the nurse, who was very nice and she told me she thought I should come in. So we threw on some clothes and headed back to the doctor's office.  I seem to keep having ill-timed problems that happen the day after my appointments. So instead of being able to talk to the doctor while I'm there, I have to pester her the rest of the week with whatever started bothering me 10 minutes after I left the office.  This was no exception.

When I got in there I had to deal with the one lady in the front office I had never dealt with before and she acted so put out with me for coming in without an appointment that I thought I would cry right then and there. The other two are always so nice that this was one was just... rude. She started shooting off requests at me for things like a copy of my driver's license (which I didn't have with me) and an emergency contact that I KNOW they already have. I did not make it to 36 weeks of pregnancy and a kazillion appointments for them to be short on my info. After she was done drilling me and finally deeming me worthy to meet with the nurse, I sat down next to Brad in the waiting room and went ahead and burst into tears like a big baby. It just hurt so much at that point and she was being MEAN to me! Did she not get the memo about not being mean to pregnant Kara? Someone, please send her the memo!

Ok, so back to the appointment. I met with the nurse practitioner who was being a little too 'well, tough luck, there's nothing we can do' for my taste. She was talking about 'round the clock tylenol' as a treatment and I remember thinking, this may actually kill me. Like a gift from heaven when she went out in the hall to get her stethoscope she ran into Dr. D who came in all full of sympathy and good advice and a prescription for something to take the edge off. Let me tell you that prescription has been a godsend today.  I think I would have really been weighing the benefits of breathing against how much it hurts to breathe without it. My mother is questioning if Charlie will still be good in math, but the doctor said it is fine and we're talking a small dose for a couple of days so I'm not going to sweat it. As if to prove to me that it was fine, Charlie has been all sorts of busy today in my tummy and very considerately staying away from mommy's ribs. 

Can I also just say that in a third trimester first, I am not anxious to go into labor? I really need this to heal somewhat so I can do all the heavy breathing I'm going to have to do before getting my epidural without seeing stars. I was also realizing how unprepared we would have been if instead of popping sounds in my ribs, it was my water breaking this morning. So what did I do? Made another list! Once that list is complete and my ribs feel ok, bring on the labor!

Those of you out there who have read Twilight, please pause and appreciate the irony of all this. Bella really does not get enough props for her pain threshold. 

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

State of the Uterus - Week 36

We kicked off the weekly appointments this morning with a visit to Dr. D.  It was freezing rain pretty hard when we left and I feel fairly confident now we can make the 5 minute drive to the hospital in any weather.  Though I think the Richmond winter began and ended today with that freezing rain. So pathetic!

So I do the routine pee in a cup and came out to get on the scale. Amazingly, the scale did not have to be adjusted at all - it was already at my weight. I turned to the nurse and said I guess the person before me weighs the same. And then Brad (who can not for the life of him stay seated in the exam room during my visits) chirped up 'Guess who that is?' Great. I weigh the same as my husband. Who has been complaining endlessly about how he's put on too much weight lately. I'm not sure he's invited to come with me next week.

Then the doctor came in and did an exam and the baby has dropped! Yay! She could feel his head, which was really low and told me I am 50% effaced. Progress! I was not expecting progress yet! I am not dilated at all, but I am really just 35 weeks and 5 days so I am ok with that. Don't want to go too early.  His heartbeat sounded great and was in the 150's. 

I have to admit, the baby dropping is pretty anti-climactic. I was expecting to be able to eat more and breathe easier. Maybe get a break in the heartburn?? No, not so much. On the upside, I'm also not having a bunch of painful pressure and hitting the ladies room every 5 minutes like I was warned. 

I'm not sure I look all that different either, though one lady at work said the belly was kind of upward pointing and is now downward pointing. That's the kind of commentary I'm looking for in the home stretch - it was positive, it was encouraging, it meant I am going to give birth in the near future. She has 5 children so she knew what to say that would make me feel good.  One comment I keep getting that does not make me feel good (mostly from men who have small children) is 'get out and enjoy your freedom now because it's all about to change!' Can I just say how much I hate that comment? I do not feel like getting out and I'm rarely enjoying anything I am so uncomfortable lately. It's like telling someone who has the flu to enjoy their sick day because they have to go back to work when they feel better. When I got that comment for the 10th time yesterday, I decided it was time to stage a blog protest. So this is my e-temper tantrum about that comment. 

In other news I am just trying to finish up the nursery, start getting packed for the hospital and get the car seats installed. Sadly the fire stations no longer provide that program, at least in Virginia. That's ok. I have a feeling if we bribe our neighbor Jason with cookies and beer he will come help us figure it out. =)

Next state of the uterus is next Tuesday when I'm having another ultrasound! I can't wait to see him and find out how big he has grown! I'm also really hoping for some nominal dilation at that point. Doesn't need to be much, just something to show we are moving in a forward direction. Brad's predicting a Valentine's baby, so we'll see if he's right! 

As of last week, the baby was the size of a honeydew melon and in a couple of days will be a crenshaw melon. What the heck is that? I looked it up and it's a hybrid of two other melons I've never heard of. Who knew? I feel so melon ignorant. Oh well, we are in the melons now, which means we are close to have a baby the size of a.... newborn baby. Here's the crenshaw melon - consider yourselves educated!

I am still not Martha Stewart

Despite years of effort.

Brad ran out to the store tonight get milk and coffee and such and when he came home he brought me a dozen beautiful roses! And then I proceeded to completely brutalize them in an effort to be creative. 

Here is what I had in my head:
I even had a cube vase just like that! So I start cutting the stems and it doesn't look right and so I cut them some more and it still doesn't look right so I keep cutting until Brad walks into the kitchen, bursts out laughing and says 'Should I go get you some more?' I guess things were looking pretty dire at that point.

The more I stare at this picture, the more I don't understand why it didn't work. I had all the necessary elements! I guess besides talent. I even tried some of that flower foam stuff you can get at Michael's. Now the roses are broken up into these 3 tiny little vases I have and I am licking my wounds. Woe is me! 

Next time the roses are going into a regular vase and Martha can just look on judgementally from her blog.  That's of course assuming Brad buys me more roses after how I hacked into this set. =)

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Resolutions

It's amazing what a good night's sleep can do for one's perspective. After feeling so mopey and whiny last night (poor Brad listens to it all so patiently), I've decided what this problem needs is a properly written to do list; things to do to keep myself busy so that before I know it the baby is here. It must be written down because my memory span is about 3 minutes at this point.

I've also heard from a certain source (Kristy, who I think got this from someone else) that most of life's problems can be addressed through adjusted expectations and good hydration. So I just had a gatorade and told myself while I was drinking it to quit being so impatient. Impatience is not attractive - much like cameras, it adds 10 pounds.

One of my projects is going to be cooking some things to freeze to eat after the baby comes. If you, gentle reader, have any suggestions for recipes that freeze well and aren't terribly heavy, please throw them out there.  I have a feeling I'll be stocking up on aluminum baking pans and fat free cream of mushroom soup soon.

I've got to finish the nursery, find a cute diaper bag, pack for the hospital, write thank you notes, finish my playlists and completely clean and organize this entire house. Since this sounds like a list for the pregnant version of Wonder Woman, I may also invest in a red cape. When I'm wearing the red cape, get out of the way because things are being accomplished.

This is the only picture I could find of a pregnant superhero. Looks rather like Britney Spears, doesn't it? I wonder why there aren't more pregnant super heroes.
This is Most Fruitful Yuki, which is Juno's (the pregnant teen from the movie Juno) alter ego that fights injustice. Her mantra is 'Lead with the Belly, Follow with the Sword.' Such sage advice coming from a teenager. I found one youtube video where she is fighting Dick Cheney over pregnant lady parking at Babysrus. It's actually pretty disgusting or I'd post the link. 

Ok, well I'd better hop to it. Have a gooooood daaaaay!!!!

Friday, January 23, 2009

*Warning* Whiny blog post ahead

If that baby ticker on this blog knows what's good for it, it'll hurry the heck up. 34 days??? Seems like we've been stuck in the 30's forever now.  I keep telling myself ok, less then 5 weeks, that is totally doable. Then I spend an entire day exhausted with heartburn and feet in my ribs and this searing burning sensation at the top of my stomach and 5 weeks sounds like a lifetime. 

I kind of egged it on a little bit I guess. I've been playing on itunes, making some new playlists and I found my favorite Irish band, Scythian on there and started listening to it. If you've never been to one of their concerts, it is the MOST fun. I haven't been in forever - they mostly play in DC - but hearing it just made me want to put my favorite jeans and heels and a going out top and hit a bar to hear them play. But yeah, sitting around on Friday night sick to my stomach because I ate more then 2 bites of dinner and reading pointless stuff online is fun too! There's a point where Ben & Jerry's Phish Food with a side of Perez Hilton just no longer helps.

I am BLAH. Sorry for the bummer post. More uplifting banter tomorrow. 

Monday, January 19, 2009

Richmond Shower!

I need to get some pictures to post from other people's cameras, but I thought I'd go ahead and post about my shower Saturday, which was SO MUCH FUN!! It was hosted by two of my very good friends, Colleen and Kristen, over at Colleen's house. It was absolutely freezing cold outside, but this is Richmond so it still doesn't snow. Colleen's and Kristen made a lot of yummy food and one of my favorite foods - chocolate cake - was in attendance. Kristen also made a diaper cake, which I'd seen pictures of before, but never in person. I love it! It's going to feel like a shame to unroll them and pull it apart, but at 3am when I'm on diaper change #6 for the night, I'll probably get over it. 

The baby got all sorts of wonderful gifts and the baby mama (me) got a lot of very good advice! Colleen had everyone write down some tidbits of advice on note cards ad then read through them. It was all very helpful and I got to bring them home with me. This is a good thing, as just about every time I get advice I get this hyperventilating-type feeling like maybe I am way in over my head and the hospital should think long and hard before letting me take him home. They say to sleep when the baby sleeps, but I have this feeling I'll be reading books (and now notecards!) looking for things I've forgotten to do or I'm doing wrong. For instance, I can't remember right now how often I'm supposed to give him a bath. But I'm getting way off topic. Back to the shower!

The great thing about having friends who have young kids is they know exactly what to get you that you'd have no idea to get (or ask) for yourself. For instance, I opened up these little shoes that my friend Karen, who has a 5 1/2 month old (our baby's predetermined BFF) gave me and all the other moms start vigourously nodding their heads in approval because these are, in fact, the best shoes to keep the baby's socks on. The same thing happened with the Baby Bjorn bib that Kristen got me. And the bottle cooler/warmer that Angie got me. Again - I might be in over my head here. But I do have some very good people to call and ask questions! Because I only think I halfway know what I'm doing here. 

Brad was so funny about everything when I got home. He helped bring in the gifts from the car and I showed him everything and he kind of acts like these things are moderately interesting, but don't really have much to do with him. Ringo grabbed the item that looked most like a dog toy and tried to take off with it, so we had to get it back. And then I showed Brad what one of my friends from work, Kristen (another Kristen), got the baby - some Arkansas Razorback and Texas A&M pacifiers! He was all excited, but then he told me I could put the A&M ones away because our baby only needs the Razorback ones. Nice. We'll see about that. He also says I play with all the baby clothes like we have a doll coming instead of a baby. Whatever. Baby clothes are too stinkin' cute to do anything else. 

Anyways, it was a lot of fun and an awesome shower and I appreciate everyone who came and all the wonderful baby gifts. I also really appreciate Colleen and Kristen doing so much to make it very special. You know, Brad and I have moved twice since we got married and have never really felt settled anywhere long enough to make a big bunch of friends. I mean, we've met friends in each place we've lived (some very close friends at that) but I was looking around the shower and remembering when we moved here and knew almost no one and realizing how in two years it's turned into this - a house full of people who showed up on a Saturday afternoon (one of them on a crutch with a sprained ankle!) because they care enough to want to celebrate the arrival of our baby. It was one of those moments that catches you in the back of your throat.  Can't feel anything but gratitude after that. 

I'll post some pictures when I get them! We're headed to Babysrus to get a crib mattress and a few other things. Also to Target since we're going to start getting the bag together for the hospital. You know something is close when you start packing for it! 

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

State of the Uterus - Week 34

Brad and I had a nice visit with Dr. D yesterday. It was fairly uneventful since there's really nothing exciting going on with the baby beyond growth. I mean, we got growth, heartburn, back pain and a constant foot in my ribs. An expected number of things to complain about for someone in their third trimester. Dr. D said the baby probably has a position he favors, kind of like how you may have a favorite position to sleep in. After giving that comment some thought, I've decided the baby gets all nice and comfy on the right side of my uterus, sticks a foot in my ribs and thinks ahhhhh, now this is nice! I picture finding him one day when he's older fast asleep with his foot pushed up against the crib slats. 

I gained another couple of pounds the past two weeks, which is probably mostly baby. My appetite is pretty well shot - I think my stomach is squished in there. If I do eat, usually lunch, I feel sick and uncomfortable afterwards. I am measuring right on time and the baby was sure to give Dr. D a couple of huge kicks while she was measuring me. She said 'look at this child kicking me!' He's seemed to have an affinity for showing off for Dr. D ever since he was itty bitty. When she first started using the little wand thing to hear the heartbeat, he was always sure to make his presence known with some kicks. We decided back then that boy or girl, this was a show off!

There really shouldn't be much exciting happening for another 2 weeks. At that point the baby may drop or there may be some other sign that his birth is on the way. Or there may be nothing. Since I was kind enough to my poor mother to be an entire month late, I'm trying to keep my expectations in check. I know they won't let me go more then a week past my due date (believe me, I asked) but I don't want to get my hopes up it will happen before the due date. I've decided that this is like being a little kid waiting for Christmas, except we have no idea when Christmas is going to happen. And boy is opening presents going to hurt! 

We have another doctor appointment on January 30 and our last ultrasound on February 3. They will take a lot of measurements then and see how big he is and how much he weighs. Just speaking as the person carrying him around, I think he's BIG! In addition to being a late baby, I was a huge baby (9.5 pounds delivered with no drugs - I'm submitting my mother for sainthood status), so who knows. Baby Center last week said he was a pineapple and this coming week he is a cantaloupe! Writing that just made me crave fruit salad.....

Next state of the uterus - 2 weeks!

Williamsburg Baby Shower!

Sue and Clare threw me a beautiful baby shower in Williamsburg last weekend and it was so much fun! There were many Spooner friends and family in attendance and two of my good friends from Washington, DC, Lakshmy and Steph were able to come as well. Lakshmy's husband Mike came down to entertain Brad and they went with Art to catch some football during the shower. Lakshmy and Mike's names may sound familiar to some of you - they are the friends of the 'Alaska Cruise that Brad and Kara will never shut up about' fame. Cue the whale.

There were lots of yummy goodies including tea sandwiches and some delish chocolate covered strawberries, some tea and punch and wine (so far we are 2 for 2 on alcohol at my baby showers) and these adorable little gingerbread cookies in little bags for the favors. If you know her, you already know this, but Sue throws a mean party. She could write a book on table decor alone. Perhaps Sandra Lee could pick up a copy and quit calling them 'tablescapes'. But I digress. 

I wore my other after Christmas sale dress from Japanese Weekend that I found with my mom. I love this dress and the pattern and found little heels (as little as this Texas girl's conscience would permit) and some stealth maternity hose to go with it. I don't know if its that I'm bigger now and not used to seeing my face puffy like this or I overdid it with the makeup or what, but I feel a little drag queenish in these pictures. 

Here are Clare and I right before the shower. I am kicking myself but I'm not sure yet if I got a picture with Sue. Clare and I did not intentionally match outfits for the shower, but since we did, don't we look so color coordinated?? Clare was so sweet and sat next to me when I opened gifts and kept a very neatly written list for my notes. It was so fun to open everything with her there - we cooed and ooohed and awed at all the adorable little baby things. And believe me, there was no shortage of adorable baby things at this shower!

Here I am (yeah, I'm the one on the right) with Steph and Lakshmy right before the shower. 

I was so grateful these girls drove all the way down from DC to come to the shower. We had a blast and spent all of Sunday morning drinking coffee and laughing our heads off - it was awesome. Such fun girl time - just what I needed! 

Since I can have a glass of wine here and there I of course had to have one with Sue, Lakshmy and Steph after the shower was over. Lakshmy brought the most delicious chardonnay - the Landmark Overlook - that she bought around my birthday in June for us to have on our next visit (we do that between visits - hunt down the most wonderful chardonnays we can find and then drink them within an hour of seeing each other again). As she puts it, I then had to go and get all knocked up so she's been holding on to it ever since. My review of this wine?? Fab Fab Fab. Run, don't walk. We're crackin' another bottle of it after Charlie gets here.

After the shower we had a little family dinner of yummy lasagna and salad. Here are the two freak shows goofing around at said dinner. Actually I love this pic - these two are quite a bit of trouble when they get around each other! But lovable trouble!
 
So to sum it all up, it was an awesome weekend and shower and I felt so blessed to be surrounded by so much love. I think Charlie could feel it too - and he seems to really dig getting presents because he was going nuts the whole time I was opening gifts. Ahh, just like his mama!

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Yes, I'm a Loser

I am actually going to write a blog post on what I thought about this year's teenage movie obsession. Yeah. I know.

My friend Karen and I went to see the Twighlight movie on Saturday afternoon. Much to our surprise, for an afternoon showing of a movie that has been out a while, it was packed! We had to sit really close up front, but got butter on the popcorn so I could have sat in the aisle and been happy. I think my sister Meredith pegged the description of the movie right on - it is hilariously bad! There were parts where Karen and I were looking at each other and just laughing our heads off while the teenage girls around us were gasping and biting their fingernails. But, like I was told by Lindsay, Rob Pattinson (who plays Edward) is super yummy. With yummy on top!

You can kind of tell the studio wanted to get this movie out while the books were still extremely popular so they could make as much money as possible in their window of opportunity. Just in case the movie didn't take off, they spent barely any money making it. While the release of the Harry Potter movies has been annoyingly slow, at least they have the patience to try and get the movies right - with mediocre success, granted, but I wouldn't describe any of those movies as hilariously bad.

So the whole thing comes off as kind of rushed. The screenplay is disappointing, leaving out what I think are crucial parts of the book and turning Edward into this frustrated, pissed off grouch, which is not how I read him in the book. The special effects are really cheesy and casting of everyone but the two main characters must have been done with a blindfold, some headshots and a set of darts. Whoever they hired to do hair and makeup needs to step away from the Clorox bleach immediately and leave the Wal-Mart seasonal Halloween aisle.

It's kind of a shame really. I mean, I don't want to pretend these books are some great contribution to literature. But they are real page turners and if you want to escape, this a book series to escape into. The movie has a lot of unrealized potential if it actually, oh I don't know, followed the book? I mean really ladies, let's try to think of any cons at all to this story line - an extremely hot, wealthy immortal falls madly in love with and becomes hopelessly devoted to a pale, clumsy everygirl. All because she smells good. I'm certainly not one to argue with the new glamourization of being pale and clumsy.

They are doing a movie on the second book, which they have set a release date (11/20/09) for before they've even finalized casting. I would say that is a Bad Sign. They have the same screenwriter (ugh) but the original director left because the schedule was too rushed. So last time the schedule was ok? Oh dear. And the story line means Rob Pattinson won't be in it much so there goes all the yummy. What's the point I ask you??? Oh well, the teenage girl brigade will show up in full force again and spend their allowance on the movie t-shirts at Hot Topic. The marketing machine will roll on. Hopefully I will have gained a life by then, but something tells me I'll have Karen on the phone asking her to go with me again. =)

So anyways, that's my 17 year old girl rant. I guess at least I had this movie to go see because everything else released this holiday season was depressing. I'm too hormonal for depressing. Sorry Marley. Too bad Benjamin Button. Now I really need a new book series to escape into. I'm starting the first book of the True Blood series, so maybe that'll keep me busy for at least part of my 50 day countdown.

Friday, January 2, 2009

Happy New Year!!

The New Year is a wonderful time for reflection and planning. Unfortunately, I have recently discovered the game Word Challenge on Facebook (thanks Karen!) and it is so much fun, there's been only been brief periods of reflection and planning. Less for you to read!

2008 was a strange year for the Spooners. It has been a year of extreme highs and extreme lows. Since highs are considerably more fun to read about, I'll talk mainly about those.
  • First off, how can you really bash any year too badly when there's a baby on the way? I'll spare the gag-inducing details, but Baby Spooner was conceived this year and now is less then 2 months from arrival. Yeeee-hah! I found out he was coming on my birthday in June - I'll never get another birthday present like that again, I'm sure.
  • Brad and I got to go to Italy with our very good friends Brent and Melissa. It was an incredible trip; my first to Europe. It was the best food and wine I have ever had in my life. And I looooooove the Italian people - they are fun and kind and dramatic and they tried really hard to understand my crappy Italian phrases.  I hope to put together a nice photo album of it before we go again in 10 to 15 years. Alaska 2006 photos are still laying around hoping for the same fate. 
  • Brad and I got to take a really fun and romantic trip to Newport, Rhode Island in June around his birthday. The first part was a work trip - an anniversary celebration for Evil Nameless Investment Bank - but then we stayed a few extra days just the two of us and had an incredible time. So romantic. If you haven't been, go!
  • We got to go back to Pinehurst for a few days with the Spooners for tennis (golf for Brad), shopping, spa and lots of good food and wine. We have gone every June for the past few years and it is always so much fun. And my serve was really looking a lot better by the time we left.
  • We celebrated our 6th wedding anniversary, talking all day along the lines of 'can you believe it's been 6 years? Where did the time go?' We played it fairly low key this year as I was still coming off of morning sickness and was very tired. Evil Nameless Investment Bank pretty much ruined our 5 year anniversary, so I have high hopes for our 7th! Any volunteers to babysit? 
In general, even with the lows of this year, we can not complain. We are, quite frankly, very fortunate. We are healthy, we have a loving family, incredible friends and each other. And we are SO EXCITED for this little baby to get here!! Especially me because he is still kicking the daylights out of my ribs and I could really live without the heartburn. 

I usually make some short list of resolutions, most of which are forgotten by mid-February and then re-made the following January 1. I'm hoping some of these stick:
  • Give birth. Preferably with an epidural ASAP. I thought about trying to hold out without one for a while, but then found out they don't pass out awards at the end, so no matter.
  • Lose the pregnancy weight. This being my first child, I'm not sure what kind of endeavor this really is, but I'm setting a Labor Day deadline. That's when we'll be going to Florida for cousin Ben's wedding to Nicole so it's the perfect incentive. Thanks for thinking of me guys! 
  • Get my behind to church more regularly
  • Stay in better contact with all my wonderful friends and family. They removed access to Instant Messenger at work, so this has been really hard lately!
  • Learn to sew. Straight lines are fine - I just want to be able to do curtain panels, table linens and pillows (though pillows sound hard, so that may get pushed to 2010). 
  • More books, less TV.
  • Brad resolves to lower his handicap. He can't really think of any others. Inspirational!
I'll have to pull these back up next year and see how I did. Life is going to look so different from how it does now this time next year, so that will be very interesting. By then I should be in first place on Word Challenge so will have more time to reflect. Ha!

Quick baby status: I am in my 33rd week, the baby weighs almost 4 pounds (estimated) and is the size of a jicama. If you are not familiar with the jicama, it looks like a large turnip, but when you peel it, it's white and it tastes like a giant water chestnut. Nutritionally it is starchy, has some vitamin C, but is mostly nutrient devoid. I don't cook with them often, but I've never seen one as big as 3.5-4 pounds. Someone really needs to send that BabyCenter intern back to college.  

Well, I guess even with a limited amount of reflection and planning, I still had a lot to say! Happy New Year everybody! I'll close with a couple of my favorite pictures of 2008.

Spooners and Morgans overlooking Vernazza in the Cinque Terre, my favorite stop on our trip to Italy:

Brad and me in Florence: