Monday, August 31, 2009

Welcome Back To Happy Acres

Well, there will be pictures of the birthday later, for those who care (approximately four of you) but for now there is this: my effing washing machine overflowed this morning, covering the laundry room floor, the kitchen floor, and an edge of the carpeted hallway within about three minutes of my turning it on. Please understand that the laundry room is LARGE. It's almost as big as the kitchen. It was a LOT of floor. So, there is now not a single clean towel in the house, since guess what was in the machine to begin with? A load of towels. Hope no one wants a shower anytime soon. Or, you know, CLEAN CLOTHES.

This happened to Jim while I was gone a few weeks ago, but it was all cleaned up by the time I got home, so I think I failed to appreciate the full aggravation of it. Well, we are even now, my dear. Also, I hope you can fix it again.

Because I really don't want a new washing machine for my birthday.

Our dryer has been nuts lately too- half the time it gets stuck halfway through the cycle, overheats, and will continue running forEVER unless you remember to go stop it. Luckily nothing's been shrunk too horribly yet, but we've wasted plenty of electricity and unnecessarily heated up the house many, many times. Yay for appliances.

Friday, August 28, 2009

Is This The... Very Best Bite For Baby?

I know plenty of women before me have already scoffingly discarded this quote- you know, the one from What To Expect When You're Expecting about that guilt-laden question you're supposed to ask yourself ever time you pick up your fork while gestating- but I can't help hearing it the last few weeks, sarcastically ringing in my ears, every time I pick up a salty burrito or take a bite of dessert. I know that in the first trimester the main thing is that you are getting enough fluid and enough calories, and the exact nutritional content of that intake is kind of secondary to whether or not you can even keep it down. So if I want to eat Cream of Wheat and Popsicles and scrambled eggs and cheese sticks every day, while drinking nothing but Vitamin Water (thanks for the suggestion, Jen!) that's okay, right? Or if I want to just sidle up directly to a salt lick and... Oh, no? Maybe draw the line somewhere?

Well, then just make me feel better and tell me about the crap you ate while pregnant, and all the leafy green vegetables (gag) that you, too, neglected shamefully.

The kids and I are taking off tomorrow for a water park/resort with my sister, our friend Beth, and my parents, so wish me luck. Or at least enough alertness not to sleep the whole weekend away, like I did the LAST time we were there when I was pregnant. Jim has to stay here and coach a very important revenge game Saturday (and also maintain the house's current spotless condition, so that when we arrive home on Sunday scant HOURS before Eli's birthday party, all we'll have to do is hide the laundry and get out the cake!)

Coming up next week: pictures from water park (no more bikini top for me!) pictures from Eli's second birthday, and Wednesday, that all important ultrasound report. Which I cannot stop thinking about no matter how many times I mentally slap myself out of it.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Since I Don't Have Twitter...

...I will use this venue to announce that I am watching The Fountain, and if Australia didn't ruin Hugh Jackman for me, this here masterpiece is gonna do him in forever.

Also I Totally Have Pregnant Face

I got tagged by Michelle and Hilary to roar about myself, inspired by Clueless But Hopeful's original roaring post. But dude, I cannot summon up any roaring power today. I feel weak and tired and like a kind of lousy mom today, so... We'll table that for a while! Instead I will complain.

This pregnancy so far, like Eli's, is leaving me both queasy and ravenously hungry, which is a sucky combination. I end up eating all morning long to squelch the hungry nausea, but then if I eat the wrong thing I get the Nausea nausea, so then I have to eat something that's Right to try to fix it. Right being salty. I am all about the salty right now. I ate buttered toast for breakfast (which was yuck) then had a frozen burrito for a SNACK, and am now eating a big pile of tater tots because I am still hungry/shaky/nauseous.

All of this food foraging and rejecting is taking up a big chunk of morning time, so I feel like I get nothing done until about noon, especially since I've given up my morning drug, er, coffee ('cause now it's also YUCK.) And then I'm ready for a nice nap by about two, so you can imagine all the fun and enriching activities the kids and I are doing.

Also, WATER is making me nauseous, but I'm really thirsty all the time (see: massive salt consumption.) So I guess I need some Gatorade or something?

I'm finding myself very displeased with my belly this time around. With Addy my stomach was pretty flat to start with, so all that poked out was, you know, BABY belly, around twelve weeks. With Eli I had a tiny little pouch leftover from Addy's pregnancy, so there was a bit of chub that started popping out before the actual uterus bump began to appear. THIS time, I have a fairly significant, stretch-marked fat pocket right over my uterus from Eli's pregnancy, when I gained (blergh blergh mumble) pounds. So all that early pregnancy bloat is just making this fat pouch pop RIGHT out, a nice big gut, and nothing at all approaching the cute baby bump I remember from my first pregnancy. There's nothing sweet about lovingly stroking what appears to be an inner tube of fat. Humph.

Jim's soccer team won their first game last night, and I was really excited, but then I just randomly started crying about stupid stuff that I couldn't even explain. We were talking and I kept sniffling but trying to keep The Crying at bay, and then I was all, "Oh crap, I think I have to CRY!" Kind of like when you warn someone you have to puke. Step back, folks, it's going to be a gusher.

All this and I still feel pretty uneasy that I'm "really" pregnant. Sure, my progesterone went up, but... the hcg hadn't doubled, and the progesterone is still technically low, just not quite as worryingly low as before. I'm just not going to feel safe that this is real until I see a heartbeat next Tuesday. So until then, I'll just feel kind of fat and sick and grumpy I guess!

Saturday, August 22, 2009


Some info about a co-sleeping bassinet that's being recalled. (Because we don't have enough to worry about, obviously.)

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Happy Dance

Well, yesterday was a great day. Not only did it rain a lot, FINALLY, but the doctor called me to let me know my progesterone has gone up to seventeen and a half from thirteen. Very relieving, as I was totally braced to hear that it was still in the low teens or even going down. She said to keep up with the supplements and, in her words, I should be "good to go" until the ultrasound in two weeks.

I'm definitely not winning any contests for high hormone levels or anything, but at least it doesn't seem like I'm in imminent danger of losing the pregnancy right now, so, whew. We are all feeling very happy for the moment. Um, except my stomach, which feels queasy the last few evenings and demands scrambled eggs with heavy salt made by Jim, best egg-scrambler in the world.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

People Are Funny. And Awful.

Ugh. I walked into the path lab this morning in time to overhear about the saddest/white trashiest phone conversation ever. Basically, a (very large, bleached blond) woman in a tiny sundress and no bra was loudly discussing with her girlfriend how she was worried that the friend's boyfriend was hitting her kids. I was signing release forms at the desk when I heard from the seating area, "I'm just really worried about the kids. I think he's smacking them around. I mean, I know you smack their butts, hell I smack their butts, but (child's name) says that (boyfriend's name) is smacking him to the ground. The baby too! Yes, he called me to tell me. No, he didn't say anything about you, just (boyfriend's name.)" Followed by, "I know I've never liked him. But this isn't about me not liking him. I'm worried about your kids, girl! You can't think about how you feel about him, think about how you feel about your kids." Silence. Then, "No, I don't think he's being sneaky. I think he was telling the truth." Followed by a dismayed sigh. "Well you tell (child's name) that he can call me anytime."

What. In. The. World. The receptionist and I just stared at each other in horror. I just hope whoever was on the phone with that woman managed to prioritize her children's safety over her desire to have a man in her bed. At least the woman on the phone (smacking of butts aside, whatever THAT meant, exactly) seemed genuinely concerned about the kids, so hopefully she'll keep monitoring the situation.

ANYHOO, have mentioned that I miss coffee? Yet today? I spent an hour this morning at a nearby playground with my friend and her kids, lying on my back on the dirty ground, because I was so tired that just standing upright, keeping an eye on my babies, was too exhausting. Also, while we were there Jess totally reminded me of a playground story from a few months ago that I forgot to write about.

We were at the same playground together, earlier this summer, and Gabriel (Jess's son) and Addy were working to climb up one of the plastic slides. Another little boy was following behind them, trying to climb up as well, when his mom snatched him off the slide kind of vehemently and grabbed him by the hand. "If you can't play nice we have to go home, " she informed him. "But the other kids were climbing too!" he protested. "That doesn't make it right," she replied severely. As Jess and I cracked up in the background. Now we like to imitate her grim and judgemental tone whenever appropriate.

Her reaction just seemed a little... out of proportion, shall we say, to the severity of the offense. "That doesn't make it right" is what you say when a kid protests that he was only, say, cheating on a final because other kids were doing it. Not really a parental saying that I had previously associated with going the wrong way on a slide. No one was getting hurt, no one was being bullied, no one was currently trying to go down the slide and being forced to wait... I don't know, maybe we were letting our kids flagrantly disobey playground protocol. But as far as I'm concerned, climbing UP slides is way more fun than going down them. Also! Better exercise!

Monday, August 17, 2009

August. It's The January Of Summer.

Every year August kills me. Partly it's just that the blush is off the rose with regards to summer fun and summer wardrobes and most especially summer weather. Nearly always by this point in the year, our area is at some level or another of drought, with things going brown and wilty and no one but the most die-hard lawn enthusiasts really caring anymore about weeding or watering. (As I wasn't ever quite what you'd call an enthusiast even back in the lush and promising month of May, you can imagine the state of our yard now.) This year seems like the deadest and hottest August I can remember. As it always does. At least when it's dry as a bone like this you can skip mowing with very little consequence, except maybe a few weed patches here and there which sprout up determinedly. Skipping watering, though- that has some consequences. Like a highly unproductive vegetable garden, and yet another hanging basket which I've managed to kill. (Verdict: involuntary manslaughter by gross negligence.)

I did fill my lunchtime wrap with several Roma tomatoes Jim harvested yesterday, so I guess the garden wasn't a total wash. My eggplants were a disaster though, and the kohlrabi which sounded so crunchy and delicious back in the spring- and which were the only plants to really thrive- now sound gross and I have no idea what to do with them.

You know what else sounded gross today? The turkey that I heated up to put in my wrap earlier, like a dutiful little pregnant person, carefully avoiding listeriosis or whatever poison unheated lunch meat is supposed to contain. It sounded yummy when I pulled it from the fridge, but once I removed it from the microwave, steaming and pungent, my stomach immediately turned and I had to dump it in the dog's dish and then flee before I threw up.

Generally I'm not feeling all that nauseous yet, just a little weird in the mornings. Food just doesn't sound very GOOD first thing, but I don't feel like running to the bathroom, either. Also, I've had some kind of flu thing for the last week or so (it WAS the flu, like fever and body aches, not just the baby parasite) so it's hard to tell what's a pregnancy symptom and what's just lingering lethargy and yuckiness.

Luckily the kids are being relatively cooperative and low-maintenance lately. They're both really on a coloring streak, so I spend most of my day refreshing paper, crayon and raisin/goldfish/milk supplies, then sitting by to admire the dubiously representational drawings produced. Oh, and affirming Eli's choice of color. He knows most of his colors now, but still requires constant confirmation that yes, that crayon is ownj (orange) ownj ownj!!!

Oh, and I'm totally writing this boring and generally purposeless post to avoid rushing off to the pathology lab for another blood draw. I'm supposed to have my progesterone level tested again some time this week, and part of me desperately wants to find out if the hormone supplements are working or not, but another part of me just wants to go on enjoying the hopefulness of our current wait and see attitude. Wonder how long the ambivalent side of me will win out over the control freak side.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

So Far So Good

Houston, we have a sac. Just ONE, too, and my apologies to all you twin wishers. But there IS a gestational sac, measuring appropriately for my dates, and there's even a little speck visible in there- not anything recognizable or with a visible heartbeat yet, but it's not empty, and that's all one could hope for at this point in the game. The doctor said my corpus luteum looked good too, which is relieving since that's what produces progesterone until the placenta takes over around ten weeks.

My actual hcg level wasn't low at all, either (2191 to 3110,) it just wasn't raising as quickly as they like to see. But for now the doctor said not to worry too much, all looks well, and we'll do another ultrasound September 2nd. So. For now we are trying to relax.

Thanks for all your good wishes!

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Also Kinda Fitting: "Que Sera, Sera"

You know that song by Chicago, "If You Leave Me Now"? I've had this line from it running through my head all day: "Oooh, oh no, baby, please don't go."

My numbers aren't looking too good, guys. Progesterone is only thirteen, despite being on supplements since ovulation and doubling them once I got a positive test. After they got the result yesterday they doubled THAT, so I'm now on four hundred mils a day. Also, my hcg didn't double in forty eight hours like they look for in a healthy pregnancy. It did go up, but only about half as high as we wanted to see.

So. I have an appointment- and by appointment they had better mean "following a sonogram"- tomorrow afternoon to discuss stuff. Keep your fingers crossed for me, okay? At this point I don't care if there's FOUR kids in there, as long as there's something.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

No Good Time Goes Unpunished

First off, my doctor's appointment went just fine. Didn't want you to think I wasn't posting because I was sad. They didn't do a sonogram since, duh, you'd be awfully lucky to see anything that early. But they did go over my history of miscarriage and the fact that there's a possibility of multiples this time (well, a HIGHER THAN AVERAGE possibility, I guess) and scheduled an ultrasound for three weeks from today. This seems like SUCH a long time to wait, but it's probably for the best... With Eli I had such early ultrasounds I think it took three times before we saw his heartbeat, which was kind of the opposite of reassuring.

Now then! On to the weekend recap. Thursday night (not actually the weekend, but still noteworthy) Jim, his brother and I met up with some friends in Columbus for the Silversun Pickups concert. While screamy concerts are not really my thing, especially when there is no alcohol to numb the noise a little, it was still pretty fun, except for the tragedy of walking all over town for a half hour in search of a place to eat quickly before the show, only to discover that our preferences, Chipotle and W.G. Grinders, had both closed at four. As, apparently, had EVERYTHING ELSE. That eight dollar personal pizza that I ended up eating out of a box at the concert never tasted so good, though, let me tell you.

Then, Friday, I went to Louisville with my youngest sister and two of our friends to meet up another two friends and their boyfriends. In a two bedroom apartment. And oh, it was fun. Even sleeping on the couch turned out to be surprisingly comfortable. The drive to and from Kentucky was murderous, as we got stuck in traffic both times, but Louisville itself seems very nice from what I saw of it. Of course, I usually saw it after dark: first Fourth Street, which is CRA-zy (at least from eleven to three in the morning,) and then the next night when we hit the city limits and visited Waverly Manor.

Yes. I made it through an hour and a half tour of a haunted tuberculosis sanatorium without peeing my pants or crying (out loud.) I am such a big girl. Sure, several of my friends and I had fingernail imprints on our arms for days, and sure, other members of the tour may have kept hissing at us to stop turning on our flashlight when we had been told not to, but still. I didn't run screaming from the building, nor did I stagger out the exit, shell shocked and catatonic. I even slept just fine afterwards. I'd call that a rousing success. I overcame my fears with my reasoning powers!

Example of Sarah's super-rational inner monologue throughout the tour: Okay, you don't believe in ghosts. Like, not at ALL. Of course all these idiots keep whispering that they "see something." They, unlike you, CAME here to be scared and see ghosts and so naturally they're going to. You know that those are just shadows from trees, flashlight beams, people's cell phones... Oh, nice, now she's making us turn all lights off, including phones. Well, still. Old creepy building with gashed out windows, still lots of shadows from that. These people are NOT actually seeing stuff. I wish they'd shut the heck up, though. I'm sure all those grisly stories she's telling us are made up. I'm sure there's not actually a murdered nurse prowling around here, or insane tb patients who are angry at the barbaric treatments they received years ago. Impossible. Take deep breaths and just re-AAH! What just touched my foot! Son of a...!) And so on.

So yeah. Good times. However, by the time we were driving back Sunday, I became aware that my throat was hurting more and more, and that all the body aches I felt were a little worse than one would expect from a four hour car ride and sleeping on a sofa. I had a fever by the time I got home, and even though I was so happy to see the kids and Jim, I have never been so desperate to collapse in my bed.

I didn't much rest yesterday, unfortunately, what with Eli's CHICKENPOX, which cropped up while I was gone. He actually doesn't seem that unhappy, but since I had a ton of pretty essential errands to get done yesterday, he was not too pleasant by the time we got back from: getting dog food, picking up a cell phone charger to replace the one I left in my friend's apartment, going to the grocery, and getting my blood drawn. That last one was the most fun for SURE. Ever tried to get two kids to hold still and not break medical equipment while you have seven vials of blood drawn? And then try to keep them from licking the bathroom floor or throwing the door open as you attempt to provide a sterile urine sample for the technician? Well, you should add it to your list. I've never felt so alive as I did in those moments!

Then there was a series of minor frustrations: drop detergent on the driveway and spill sticky goo all over the place, discover swarms of ants crawling in and out of the wall near the dog dish, moments later discover clouds of gnats inexplicably swarming all over the bathroom and the kitchen. Also the fact that both kids have been up in the middle of the night the two nights since I've been home, last night multiple times. And now Addy's running a fever, just as mine is going away. I think the universe is trying to tell me not to leave home again for a good long time.

Edit: Wow am I, er, not smart. I totally didn't know that chickenpox is an airborn virus. I can't believe I dragged Eli all over town yesterday. I mean, he has the mildest case imaginable, just a few spots on his face that anyone else would think was just a rash, so I guess I figured it was just no big deal? Plus he HAD the vaccine, so maybe I just thought that since he was mostly immune he was therefore unable to pass much of the virus on, too? I don't know. I just know that it never occured to me that I couldn't take him out in public. I feel super dumb now. Sorry, everyone in our town! We'll stay in for a while now!

Wednesday, August 05, 2009

Belly Shots... Already?

This progression seems slightly concerning, given that I am only four weeks pregnant today....

sometime mid June

August 3rd

August 5th


Tuesday, August 04, 2009


Q: Very newly pregnant, very excited, very nervous.

A: Who is Sarah aka semidesperate housewife?

Geez, you guys, I wish I could be cool and keep these things a secret until three months in like you're supposed to, but I can barely restrain myself from grabbing random check out clerks and informing them of my condition. So I have to at least tell you all. I got a positive yesterday morning, which was only day 26, WAAAY earlier than I've ever gotten a positive before. And it was, like, actually positive, not just a super-faint line I have to squint at all day. Still, I took a digital test too to confirm. May I just highly recommend those? It is so much more reassuring to see the word "pregnant" right there than to trust one's own interpretation of pink or blue lines or check marks or plus signs or smiley faces or whattheheck ever.

I'm pretty sure my due date is April 15th, which is just one day later than what my due date was when I got pregnant last year. So that's kind of nice, I think. It feels a bit like closure.

I already have a doctor's appointment this Thursday. I have NOOO idea what they plan on doing, since it will be way too soon to see anything on an ultrasound, I'd think. I guess blood draws, of course, but they could have just sent me to the lab for that. I don't know. But I'm not complaining. It always feels more real once you've shown up at the doctor's office.

Monday, August 03, 2009

The Jet Setter Has Returned

So Wisconsin is an interesting place. I know, I kept saying I was going to Minnesota. We did fly IN to Minnesota and spent the first day walking around in downtown Minneapolis (under construction for the last ten years, apparently) and seeing the office where my sister works. But she actually lives in a tiny town in Wisconsin right over the Minnesota border.

This was pretty much the highlight of the Wisconsin tour:

That would be the bison farm gift shop. I was slightly disappointed by the visit overall, as I had been led to believe that bison were gentle, peaceful creature which I might even be able to pet and feed. Instead, there was a sign as soon as we arrived warning that PEOPLE HAVE BEEN GORED BY THE BISON PLS STAY FAR AWAY UNLESS YOU WANT TO DIE KTHANX. So. I did not get to experience a giant scratchy bison tongue licking a carrot out of my hand. But it was still fun. There's bison jerky! Bison marrow dog bones! Bison fur coats! Books on bison ranching! Decapitated bison heads the size of giant boulders!

There was also the bowling alley we went to the first night, where the woman who was singlehandedly running the bar, kitchen, and bowling lanes looked at me askance when I requested a veggie pizza. She directed me to the sign detailing pizza options, which read as follows:

Pepperoni and Sausage
Pepperoni and Ham
Sausage and Ham
Meat Lovers

I think they kind of like meat there. Also, their lanes must be rigged, because I think I bowled something like a sixty eight.

Minneapolis was really fun; we went to several little art galleries and a delicious Irish pub where I ate shepherd's pie and we all watched rugby. (Incidentally, the pub is apparently the number one seller of Jameson whisky in the world.) My mom and I also, of course, insisted on going to the very exotic and unusual Target, since the closest one to us is usually an hour and a half away. Lovely Target was where I found and gleefully purchased THIS:

That's The Baby Name Wizard, in case you can't tell. And let me tell you, taking turns reading and discussing various eccentric name choices is a surprisingly fun group activity while you're waiting for your hearty Irish meals to arrive.

Here's some pictures of my sister's new house and the people/pets/shoes that live with her. They are all of them very cute:

Thanks for all the good food and good times, guys. Not to mention all that free baby crack. Mmmm. Smell the goodness:

Self explanatory sister pose here. But we were both really excited by the lack of camera-induced double chin, so I thought I'd better be sure to post this one.