Thursday, April 28, 2011

Random Thoughts

I used to think I had a disorder where a compulsion to write things down over took my life. I carry several note books with me and have random lists and paragraphs and snippets strewn across everything I own. I have half started blog entries and word documents galore. I'm so worried about forgetting. So in an effort to combat that, I am just going to list some stuff here when then the mood strikes. Even if it is in the middle of writing a work-related communication for my out-of-commission boss (broken wrist). So, anchors away:


  • No stretch marks, but I do have a very faint linea nigra. It's exciting for some reason.

  • We bought plane tickets to Minnesota in June. That will be fun as long as I get to go swimming and buy delicious treats at Trader Joes. Yes, I will admit that I make it a point to visit one every freaking chance I get. Vegas, Disneyland, every where I can.

  • I long ago gave up the idea of completing a degree and have amassed a ridiculous amount of credits from various schools and various disciplines. I should graduate. I really should, but I just don't care to. I'm still taking classes mind you, I just don't care to wrap it up according to some bullshit plan. What is wrong with me.

  • I'm taking photography classes now. Next I think I may add a writing class into the mix. I like writing, but I don't have the patience to really love it. I much prefer editing. Not that you could tell either about me from this blog. That is because I have no patience to read what I have written. It's like how most people hate to hear their own voice. I hate that in both the aural and written capacities. Which is also why my blog is boring. I have shit to say, I just hate worrying about how to say and who to say it to. Hence all my half abandoned essays.

  • I saw a quote the other day, something to the effect that one day I will publish a book of all the photos I didn't take, and it will be a smash hit. Life is funny like that.

  • Names are becoming an issue. Our last name is really messing this up. Every name I always thought I would like for a child sound wrong, wrong, wrong paired with Organ. Rex Organ? Cash Organ? Violette or Olive, or any other cute name that happens to be an adjective or noun is out. And I seem to be drawn toward names that end in a "n" sound like June, Rowan, and Reagan which sound bad with a last name that also ends that way. So Rob and I have found a girl's name we like (and a few back ups that we are "meh" about) but it is a little sad that no one seems to like them that much. Not that anyone else's opinion really matters, but what if the little baby happens to agree that we suck at picking names? Just because I see a name as cute and quirky doesn't mean my baby won't think that it is stodgy or dumb or a number of things. It's a big decision for sure.

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Easter 2011


Easter weekend was fun, despite being cold and gloomy. On Saturday Rob and I grabbed breakfast in Denver (one of our favorite weekend rituals that we know will most likely end in a few months) and he showed me his new shop. That afternoon I helped my mom cook for the following day, and that evening I got it in my head that I wanted to see Water for Elephants so I spent about 6 hours reading the entire book (which I loved).

Sunday we ate and it was delicious as expected. After my parents' house, Rob and I saw Water for Elephants and despite the fact that the book is a million times better, I enjoyed the movie. Rob liked it too, which is not surprising given his love for period movies. He loves The Notebook too. True Story.

Here are some pictures from this weekend.

A few shots of me at 22 weeks. Rob has been taking these photos every weekend and this week is my favorite so far. I am definitely getting a bigger belly by the day, and yay! hips and face to go with it. ;)


The food we made and ate:

Pizza piena- pizza-type dough with provolone, basket cheese, prosciutto, capicola, eggs, and locatelli.


Pizza dolce - a ricotta/lemon/lime cheesecake type pie. And the lard was actually for the pizza piena, not the pie.

These are truly some of my all-time favorite foods ever. Last meal worthy for sure.

And of course, the family.

Good weekend all around.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

ABCs

Everyone else is the whole world is a VLV14 (maybe a slight exaggeration...maybe), and I'm not. But that's okay because I am not going to think about the extra double bed in Jorge and Ellen's hotel room or how much I wish I was there sleeping in it.

Oh, and I am starting to feel pregnant. Like the whole, my stomach is kind of in the way and making my back hurt. I'm not going to start complaining yet though, since I'm sure this is nothing compared to what's to come.

Also, another sign that I am really pregnant. I feel like crying because my baby will grow up too fast and I'm only 21 weeks pregnant. So not rational.

So instead of complaining, I am going to bring you the ABCs of me. I have seen this on three blogs (Gin, Kyle, Gingerbread Bagels) in the past week, so I thought I would join in the fun.

A. Age: 26

B. Bed size: Queen

C. Chore that you hate: Putting away laundry. Not actually doing laundry, just putting the clean clothes away. I attribute that to our tiny closet that makes me want to cry every time I open the door.

D. Dogs: Benny (6.5 years, pit bull mix) and Czara (3 yrs, boxer/lab)

E. Essential start to your day: I suck at starting days. Usually Rob has to bribe, yell, or physically remove me from the bed. Once awake, it is any one's guess as to which parts of a typical morning routine will actually get accomplished. It's all about sacrifices. Some days it's a shower, some days it's breakfast, some days it's leaving the house with my cell phone.

F. Favorite color: I like certain colors for certain things. Red lipstick, black eyeliner, etc. I end up going towards green a lot, so will go with that for now.

G. Gold or Silver: Either. Both.

H. Height: 5'6.75" That last 1/4 inch missing counts since my sister is 5'7" and my brother is nearly 5'10" and still growing. That little 1/4 inch is what keeps me smaller than my two very younger siblings! Not unusual but still annoying.

I. Instruments you play: none.

J. Job title: HRIS Specialist. It's thrilling, really.

K. Kids: I'm currently a pregosaurus.

L. Live: about 4 miles NW of Denver.

M. Mother's name: Annamarie. Most of her family just calls her Anna, which is a palindrome, which is fancy. kinda.

N. Nicknames: My brother and a few other family members call me Nicky, that's about it.

O. Overnight hospital stays: None that I can remember, at least not for myself.

P. Pet peeve: Pretentiousness.

Q. Quote from a movie: "Orphans have special needs!" And if you don't know what movie that is, you should brush up on your John Waters movies.

R. Right or left handed: Right, although my abilities are generally stronger on my left side. That goes back a theory I have about my corpus callosum, but no need to get into that here.

S. Siblings: Teresa, 20.5 yrs and Daniel, almost 17.


T. Time you wake up: 6 or 6:30 for work, after a long and arduous struggle. If I am not working I can very rarely sleep past 8:30. I guess I have a very specific internal clock.

U. Underwear: Usually ;)

V. Vegetable you hate: I love a lot of veggies, but I cannot get into brussel sprouts. Not for love or money.

W. What makes you run late: Thinking that I can do 17 last-minute things on my way out the door, plus the inability to accurately estimate how long travel actually takes. A deadly combination, but I come by it honestly. Hi Grandma, hi Mom!

X. X-Rays you've had: Dental, and when I broke my elbows. That was probably the worst pain in my life, thus far. It required my mom holding me down while the X-ray tech rotated my broken arm from palm down to palm up. I was 19 at the time, mind you. And yes, I said elbows.

Y. Yummy food that you make: I cook and bake regularly and consider myself pretty decent. I don't really have a "specialty," although I can make a mean soup out of almost anything.

Z. Zoo animal: Giraffes, sea lions, and penguins. I like to have the entire globe covered.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Random Thoughts

  • Last week's ultrasound confirmed that the baby is swallowing amniotic fluid and therefore should be able to taste what I am eating. Since I really want an adventurous eater, I am now trying extra hard to eat a varied diet. Rob and I enjoy a lot of different food, so this is the perfect excuse to, for example, hit up the Indian buffet as often as possible.
  • Rob and I can't decide if we should just roll with the inconclusive results, or if we should schedule another ultrasound. It won't matter one way or the other in the end, and it would probably cost me more money to know since I would be compelled to buy an entire wardrobe immediately after finding out. A lot of people recommended 3D ultrasounds, which look kinda cool and are pretty affordable, but then again that money might be better put toward newborn pictures. We are leaning towards just not quite knowing, although we both think girl.
  • 1 day into Rob abandoning me (aka switching jobs), I really hate the shuttle situation at my work. It is such a waste of time.
  • It's almost Easter. Which means it is almost time for the most delicious day of the year. Once a year, on Easter, my mother carries on the generations old tradition of making pizza piena and pizza dolce. Of course those are just generic recipe names (stuffed bread and sweet bread), and every Italian family has their own version, but my family looks forward to ours every year. It is an overdose of cheese, meat, and eggs, all wrapped up in tasty pizza dough, although not the type of pizza dough you are thinking of. My mom is forcing me (a pregnant woman, how dare she!) to help cook it this year, so that I can be the one talked into doing it in the future (it is a time consuming process with lots of imprecise measurements).
And that is it for now. Today is day off and I have lots of things to put off doing. :)

Thursday, April 14, 2011

The end of an era

Today marks a sad day: the end of my carpool with Rob. Up until this week, Rob worked at a large Toyota Dealorship that was about half a mile from NREL. But he is leaving the cut throat dealorship world for greener pastures (literally!). And while I think this new will be awesome on so many reasons, I am going to really miss driving to and from work with him, and I will especially miss meeting him for lunch. He was the only thing that kept sane so many days, and the chance to escape my semi-cubicle for an hour was a welcome respite. Since the parking for NREL is a mile away from the building (seriously, we have to shuttle in) this will probably be the end to me leaving for lunch, period. But on the other hand, I am so proud and happy that he will be working in a more positive and friendly environment, and he will able to put his skills toward a progressive company rather than line the pockets of already-rich-enough jerks (automotive techs really don't get enough recognition in the industry, either metaphorically or through compensation). It will be a great opportunity for him to get into a company on the ground floor, and all indications point to the Green Garage really taking off big time. So anyway, sad for me, happy for my awesome husband.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Anticipation


We had our ultrasound today and the good news is that the baby appears to be healthy. It was a little stressful getting to that point because this morning, after leaving my cell at my desk during a meeting, I noticed that my Dr's office called and left a vague voice mail in reference to my afternoon appointment. After a few phone calls and some investigation, it turned out that the reception had only scheduled me for a Dr's visit and not the ultrasound we expected. Rob and I were both able to leave work right away to make a last minute ultrasound appointment though, so we luckily didn't have to reschedule.

The bad news (okay, so it's not really bad news, just more non-news) is that the baby was too stubborn to show us the goods. The technician said that she can usually tell the sex a few seconds into the ultrasound, but our little baby just wouldn't cooperate. Rob was on the fence about finding out at all, so he requested that if she was not sure, just to not tell us at all. The tech's first impression was girl, but after two different types of ultrasounds, she still was not 100% sure and didn't commit one way or the other. And she probably spent a good 10 minutes on trying to determine the sex alone. She did her best to wake up the baby by jabbing on my stomach (pretty hard, actually), pushing on the opposite side of my uterus, really anything she could think of to encourage the baby to move. All to no avail. This of course delighted Rob, but actually kind of upset me. Not that I care about having a boy vs a girl, I just really wanted to know. Most of our family and friends thought girl even before today, and I'm still leaning that way, but not enough to buy any of those cute dresses that I planned on buying.

The rest of the day and the appointment felt sort of anticlimactic. That has now morphed into a really sad mood. Part of it is the realization that which ever sex the baby is, at some point I will (briefly) mourn what it is not. I was talking to Kyle and she said it perfectly... up until we know what the baby's sex will be, we are considering a life with both a little boy and a little girl. Once we find out, one of those goes out the window. And I have fallen in love with both ideas. I think not really knowing but facing the fact that it is one or the other sex has just left me emotional. An hour ago I broke the carafe for our new espresso machine and had a melt down. Rob did his best to reassure me that in the scheme of things, finding a replacement part to a $40 coffee machine was not worth shedding tears over, but since he was on his way out for the night, I am stilling feeling really out of sorts. Sad, insecure, and anxious, actually. I hate feeling this way and so I do best not to give in when I feel a mood like this coming on, but it just didn't work tonight.

So I am going to take a bath, do some eBay shopping, and stare at my baby's pictures and hopefully wake up happier tomorrow. I do have to say that it felt so good to see that little baby on the screen. I was crying, just so happy. At the time, the sex was the least important thing to me. I was just amazed that I could see my baby's heart, brain, spine. And my baby's cute little profile, that was really the best part. I'm lucky that my baby is healthy and beautiful and I am going to focus on that tonight.

Doggy loving helps too.

Nerd humor

This comic strip is hilarious, especially the one from today. Sustainability is harsh, man. And I am dead serious.

Monday, April 11, 2011

Birthday Weekend

On Saturday I turned 26. I have a hard time with birthdays, I don't know why. I tend to get emotional and reflective. This birthday was actually easier than some in the past, with only one minor emotional outburst that I attribute to being overtired.

Anyway, since I was lucky enough to have my birthday fall on a Saturday, I basically stretched my day into a weekend. And with that came the opportunity for me to eat four different birthday desserts in 3 days. I am a lucky pregnant lady.

Friday afternoon my boss had a little cake celebration for all of us in the department who had March/April birthdays. He and I actually share April 9 as our birthday. Cake #1 was German Chocolate.

Friday night Rob and I headed over to his parents' house for a nice dinner and some lemon cake. I love lemon cake. His parents also gave me a spa gift certificate, which is unbelievably thoughtful. Spa day are the kind of thing I think about often, but very rarely actually do.

Saturday morning Rob gave me the gifts he had picked out for me, including some awesome sun glasses, Lungs, a white noise machine stuffed animal for the little buddy, and my weight in Easter candy. He also gave the promise that I can buy the diaper bag I have wanted since before I found out I was pregnant.
We braved the hour wait at Snooze and had a delicious brunch, then we met my family at the Denver Museum of Nature and Science for The Real Pirates Exhibit. I love pirates and it was a very neat opportunity to look at artifacts that "real" pirate owned and used nearly 300 years ago. The crowd was large and rude, as to be expected, but overall it was a really good time.

We stopped at Steve's Snapping Dogs for dinner, then headed over to my parents for Red Velvet Cake and wii. My family got me some awesome gifts, including a web cab (mostly so I can show off the baby), some giraffe-themed baby items (entirely for the baby), and even a few things for me. ;) I really needed a bundt cake pan (well, as much as a person can need one), and my brother always find the most creative and random gifts. This time it was a cute decorative washboard and some vintage comic books.

Sunday was more low-key, with us taking the dogs on their weekly adventure (we like to take the dogs out on the town on Sunday mornings when we can), then going home and napping. My best friend Kyle and two of her brothers stopped by for a while, bearing cake batter pie (delicious) and some sweet gifts.

Oh, I even won a giveaway this weekend! Thanks Windshield Diaries and Shabby Apple!

Needless to say, it was quite the enjoyable weekend. Even with my midnight tears on Saturday, a dog vomit episode, and the mysterious case toilet overflow.

Oh and I also passed the 20 week mark - my pregnancy is now officially in the second half. And of course the best birthday present yet is still to come... We get another ultrasound this coming Wednesday.

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Automobilia

Rob worked on the engine of the '53 this weekend, and of course I was there to document his progress. Below is one shot of the '63 and a few from the '53.


Giveaway at Life As Topher's Mom

Check out this cute giveaway at Life As Topher's Mom...

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Baby Update

I am now nearing the end of my 19th week of pregnancy, which means that I'm just about half way done. It has been pretty easy so far (minus headaches and a little sciatica), and I really hope I'm not jinxing myself by saying that. I don't know how much weight I've gained (I haven't looked at my weight in almost 10 years), but I am pretty comfortable with it so far. My "bump" is still on the smaller side which has helped me stay mostly in my regular clothes (aside from pants) and while I no longer sleep completely on my stomach, I'm still small enough that I can sleep at an angle between my stomach and my side. Here are some photos from 3/26/11 and 4/3/11. As you can see, I really expanded between week 18 and 19!

I feel like I am on a decent course which makes me happy since I have been a bit more lax in my eating habits. The only place where the gain in really noticeable besides my stomach is my sides. Which I'm not exactly pleased with, but it's all the name of a good cause. See me trying to hide that in the photo above? :)

We watched The Business of Being Born last weekend and decided that we have some more research to do on the birthing process. I do like the practice that I go to now, but it still isn't ideal. They have 5 doctors on staff and at this point, I think I have met with them all. They are all basically nice and down to earth, which makes them interchangeable. The hospital the practice is associated with has a brand new birthing wing and it looks pretty nice. I still have my reservations though. I mentioned to one of the doctors that I was hoping for an unmedicated birth, and her response was for me "to keep an open mind" because I had never experienced the pain of labor. I don't doubt that it will be terrible pain, but I'm pretty disheartened that my doctor is already suggesting that my body may not be able to handle what it was designed to do. Unfortunately, Colorado is not the most midwife-friendly place to live. There is only one free standing birthing center in the state, and of course it is not in-network for my insurance. That means that I could switch to a midwife, but would still be at the mercy of hospital rules and regulations. So we are considering our options at this point. Rob has promised to be a strong advocate for me, which is great because I tend to shy away from confrontation, especially with authority figures. So we need to figure out what exactly our rights are, etc. Not that I would ever do something to jeopardize my baby, but I am suspicious about how information is presented. It seems like doctors may occasionally recommend something out of convenience and dress it up as necessity. I really want my baby and my body to be in charge. And now back to the positives. By this time next week, we should know if it's a boy or a girl. We are so excited to have a chance to look at our baby again so I'm sure this week will drag on. I may get lucky, though, since this weekend is my birthday and being the spoiled kid I am, all weekend long is dedicated to me! I get a little anxiety before a doctor's appointment, especially because everything seems too good to be true. Just the other day Rob said that this pregnancy made him think that maybe not everything in life has to be a struggle (okay, so we know we are super privileged middle-class Americans but struggles are all relative). I hope that is the case.

Monday, April 4, 2011

Weekend in Pictures and Words

Colorado did what it does best this weekend - gave us sun and record highs on Saturday, then snowed on Sunday. Of course Rob had to work all day on Saturday, but once he got home we were still able to enjoy a few hours of sunlight and warmth. We drove down to the Highlands, a neighborhood in NW Denver.

Saturday night we went home and intended to play some Wii but instead we got sucked into HGTV. Rob too, it's one of his favorite channels. Than on Sunday it was wet and cold but Rob managed to spend several hours in the garage with our '53. Here are some cell phone pictures from Saturday.