Tuesday, December 29, 2009
... Okay, so that post was started on the 8th of December. We've marched past Christmas and it's on towards New Year's now. I'm sure there is lots to blog about, so I'll try to get to that. Meanwhile Max is slightly less upset about the tree in our house. Although we do take care to keep him out of arm's reach so that he can't touch it and start freaking out again. For now I'm going to bed.
Thursday, November 12, 2009
He has no assistance from myself or his dad here. All that movement, even when it scares him, is his alone.
Tuesday, November 10, 2009
The really funny thing is that he's still a baby. I mean, he's no newborn, but he doesn't have mad play time skills or anything. Most of these toys have squeakers and stuff that he doesn't know how to manipulate yet, and if you do it for him it just scares him. The butterfly and peacock have crinkle wings that he loves to wrinkle up and stuff in his mouth. He also likes grabbing the moose by his big purple horns. Other than that he plays with all of the toys in one of two ways.
The first mode of play is to whack them with his hand, and try to get any dangling legs into his mouth if I hang them from the activity gym. The second mode is ... well, you can see for yourself.
I'm also curious if there are any children's organizations that will take donations of toys that are like new, but not new in boxes. He already has too much and Christmas is still headed toward us. If nothing else I know I can donate them to Goodwill, but if they can go directly to cheering up some kid in need that would make me even happier.
Friday, November 6, 2009
Knit in Lorna's Laces Shephard Sock, Georgetown Colorway (152).
The pattern is by Kirsten Kapur of Through the Loops. I love it even more than the pattern she wrote last Socktober. I only just finished the 2008 pair a month ago. Between holidays, pregnancy, moving, and whatever else happened they sat on the needles a long time. Still they are pretty.
Knit in Knit One Crochet Too Ty-Dy Socks, colorway 1518.The monster stirs, so I've got to run. Happy Friday!
Friday, October 30, 2009
Weight: 14 lbs, 2 oz (25th percentile)The doctor encouraged us to try him on solid foods now. So we picked up the customary rice cereal and gave him his first nibbles yesterday. On the one had Max was quite excited to be able to put new things in his mouth. I mean, putting things in his mouth is his favorite past time at the moment.On the other hand, he wasn't sure why we were trying to poison him. Despite the cereal being mixed with 4 parts breast milk to 1 part cereal and certainly not resembling any solid that Jeff and I had ever seen before, Max knew something was off. Something had contaminated his milk, and he was unimpressed.The look he gave Jeff was awesome. He knew I was mean, I make him take naps all the time and won't let him wear roller blades. But why was Daddy letting this happen?Mostly he's a happy little guy. He continues to smile and laugh and is learning all sorts of new sounds. He's even starting to realize that maybe tummy time isn't as bad as he used to think.
Length: 26 in (75th percentile)
Head: 42.3 cm (50th percentile)
Of course having some friends to keep you company always helps.
Monday, October 26, 2009
The plan started as thinking we'd take Max to see this as his first movie. He wouldn't watch it or remember it, but it'd be cool for us. The more we thought about it, and the closer it came to the movie's release, the more it seemed like a good gathering thing to do with some of the other people at home with little ones. We could get a group together, take up a whole row with our wee ones. Who knows, maybe with the improved lighting/sound mix the toddlers might have fun and not get too freaked out.
Well, it doesn't look like it's going to happen. It seems like every day I hear something more about the flu here in town. I'm not really easily scared and try not to buy into hype from the news, but of all the places in town to take Max a movie theater just seems like a bad idea. I mean, I know that they don't clean all that well between shows, because I was once covered in ketchup from a big mess that was left behind. So I can't justify the risk that I might be exposing Max to a flu bug just so that we can see this movie together on the big screen.
If it weren't flu season, or even if Max were just older, I know that we'd be there. For now I'll just add it to ye ole Netflix queue, and try to be the first to grab it when the DVD is available. Meanwhile, you can call me chicken.
Tuesday, October 13, 2009
Today Cabbit discovered the bouncer. He just climbed on in as if deciding that it must be a cat chair after all. Who knows why that strange giggle/drool/scream creature sits in it, you can tell it was meant for a cat, can't you? I mean look how it cradles his fat just so.
I wonder who will be the first to brave the swing, and what will happen when I turn it on?
Wednesday, September 30, 2009
I picked it up at HEB and it was not cheap. $2 for a single serving of yogurt is a bit steep in my opinion, but I think it's good enough to warrant buying again. I just can't afford to make this my go to yogurt every day. It was extremely satisfying last night as a dessert. So now I will investigate other options, maybe I'll find something more economical. Even if I stick with this brand it may be less expensive to get it without the added toppings, one of the options was honey and a honey bear is cheap. My comparison to mascarpone also has me thinking that it might be tasty with some brown sugar and nutmeg, which then led me to perhaps adding some cinnamon to the honey...
Thus begins my new infatuation with Greek yogurt. Ashley was right, it is good stuff.
Saturday, September 26, 2009
So I'll give the company a point in it's favor for creating a room for moms to use, but I take a half a point back because it's in a bathroom and is kind of creepy. Any of you other moms out there that have had to deal with expressing breast milk at work or school, what facilities did you have to use?
Saturday, September 12, 2009
First there was Batman. Now, I haven't been playing Batman myself, but I have been helping. I am the Alfred to Jeff's Bruce Wayne. I sit back an watch the story unfold while helping to spot secrets. I highly recommend this game. Jeff had a lot of fun playing it, and is still working on some of the challenges which is a good indication of how much he likes it. The story unfolds fluidly through game play with lots of nice video, but the scenes aren't so long that you're getting antsy waiting for the fighting to start again. If you like Batman and fighting games then you need to play this, if you like Batman and know someone who can play it for you then you should get it for them so that you can watch.
I downloaded Word Ace for my iPhone, and it's been mostly a positive experience. The dictionary and I disagree sometimes on what is or is not a valid word, and I have a feeling that some of the people are "cheating" because there just can't be that many people who can make a 7 letter word with 1 vowel and 4 Ks without help. I could be wrong, maybe I just haven't met this subset of humanity before, these scary spelling superstars. I have enjoyed trying to stretch my brain even if I don't like some of the gambling aspects (like bluffing). With 1000 free chips a day, it's not like you really have to worry about the "money". A big plus here is that I can play it one handed. So I can play a few hands while Max insists on sleeping in my arms, and it doesn't disturb him. I did once end up at a table where the chat involved people asking for pics of each other, and talking about digging insecure *itches, but that was once out of tons of tables. Mostly there is little to no chat going on, and it's a single line at the top of the screen, unless you click to enbiggen, and is pretty easy to ignore. The few times someone has talked to/at me it was to ask about the pic of Cabbit that is my avatar or to say "nice" when I got a good word out of the letters.
It seems like ever since Professor Layton and the Curious Village I've been waiting for the next Layton game to come out. The wait is over with Professor Layton and the Diabolical Box. At first I was not enjoying the game as much as I had the first. I'm not a huge fan of the voices this time around, and I think the puzzles are a little easier than before. Although that means less trial and error for me. I'm still having hell with the jumping balls over other balls to make all but one disappear puzzles, but your mileage may vary. After playing a bit I've come to enjoy at least as much as the first, and the built in mini-games I've liked quite a bit. There is the finding tea ingredients and making tea for people that is okay. The build a camera (super fun) leading to some spot the difference in two pictures puzzles that are pretty good. But my fave was the get your hamster in shape so he can spot hint coins for you game. I named my hamster Jeff.
Little Big Planet has been out for a while now, and really shouldn't be news to anyone. Jeff and I played a demo of it, and even though there was a two-player mode (actually up to four I think, but there's only two of us) I wasn't really sold on it. The controls are a bit wonky and I have a hard time navigating my sack person in the depth of field available. Still, it is a platform game so it is right up my alley. When we were outside a level and I started exploding my sack boy over and over, giggling at his different facial expressions it clinched it for Jeff. When he had to go out for cat food last night, he came back with Little Big Planet. I'm glad he did, we played through a few levels last night and had a really good time. The one and only time we tried to join an online player we couldn't get in. We were watching this other person play and finally managed to escape the level, right about the time it looked like our characters were popping in. Ah well, we'll try again sometime... maybe. Oh, and by the way, platformers where you need to swing from place to place over gaps are difficult to manage with two players. I can't imagine trying to get 4 people in sync on some of these levels. Sounds like a fun thing to try when they group has had a beer or two and something to avoid once people move on to their third. Playing as a vampire frog though, that makes it all worthwhile, a vampire frog that can explode.
The other game that Jeff came home with yesterday was The Beatles Rock Band. Totally digging it. Load times between songs (including having to hit start every time) are kind of annoying, but other than that it is a lot of fun. I enjoyed singing, and really look forward to getting more mics so that we can play some harmony with people. It would also be nice to have a mic stand so I could sing and play at the same time. This is music that I know well enough that I don't have to stare at the lyric line the entire time. It's been really great to play Rock Band and be excited by more songs than not. Usually I feel a bit musically backward for not having heard of the bands and not knowing the music. The game does not disappoint this Beatles fan. Over and over I was thrilled with the songs they chose. The videos so far have been entertaining too. I had no idea what big dorks they were, it's terrific.
Have you played any new games lately, even if they're only new to you? I'd love to hear about them.
Wednesday, September 9, 2009
Lucky Diamond in 3 colors of Socks That Rock - Lightweight
The socks were done a week ago, I just haven't made time for the blog lately. What free time I have has been consumed with other pursuits. Still, I worked on these socks off and on for 4 months so I think they deserve their day in the sun.
I enjoyed knitting this pattern much more once there was no deadline, no trying to get through acres of seed stitch in the fastest time possible. It was fun to watch the diamonds emerge as the lines of cabled stitches crept toward and away from each other. The heels are knit last, and ended up being purple out of necessity when I ran out of red. I've come to like the purple heels. I kind of like that they don't really match, and I think I might do funky heels on other pairs in the future just for fun. Since no one sees your heel in a shoe it's almost like a little secret you get to wear. Before that though there are still more pairs to finish. I can't believe how much knitting is half done around here.
Now if you'll excuse me, the socks and I are going to play at little Professor Layton before Max wakes up from his nap.
Monday, August 24, 2009
Just recently I won a giveaway through The Cradle Crush from MD Moms. My shipment arrived today. They sent an assortment of Baby Silk products: a bottle of their Hair and Body Wash, Daily Skin Protection, and Sunscreen Towelettes (both a 15 pack as well as 3 single wrap towels).
I have fairly sensitive skin, so I'm testing the lotion on myself first. If I don't have a reaction to it after a couple of days of use then we'll see how Max does with it. We haven't needed to use any lotion on him, so this is more for fun than for any dermatological reason.
I like the fact that the soap and lotion come in pump bottles. We have a gazillion bottles of Aveno baby wash and lotion courtesy of baby showers and Jeff's mom, but they are all squeeze bottles. It's easier to get soap one handed if you have a pump. Of course the big question is, what will Max think? He's enjoyed his baths and shampoos with the Aveno product. Will he notice or care that this soap is different? My money is on him not caring, but we will see.
I used mini cupcake pans, and so I ended up bringing a lot of cupcakes. I packed them into a bamboo steamer just to be able to get them all over to the Larson residence.Jeff made 3 quarts of ice cream all told, and it was a big hit. Tasty cold treats tend to go over pretty big in 100 degree weather. The cupcakes also went over pretty well, but I cheated. I put them out on the table in front of everyone as we watched In Bruges. Hard to resist little bite sized cupcakes when they are right in front of you. I should know, I think I may have eaten a dozen all on my own.
Another fun movie night! I think we'd all seen the movie already, but it's so good that we enjoyed seeing again. Max was fairly well behaved for a little guy; Jeff and I were able to stay through the entire movie. We took turns walking off to calm him or feed him as needed, but he hung in there like a champ and I don't think he disrupted the movie too much for everyone else.
Saturday, August 22, 2009
My complaints today are: The batter was too thick and resulted in a very dense cake, not light and fluffy like I get with my store bought mix. The granola was not prominent enough, and the pancake in general lacked flavor. The bit of texture from the nuts and oats was quite good though. The pineapple did not stand out, but might be more noticeable with the increase in granola. Also, I need a topping of some sort with my pancakes, but these didn't taste right with maple syrup.
The next time I think I would reduce the amount of flour, maybe to 3/4 cup, and increase the amount of granola to 3/4 cup. The amount of milk may have to be adjusted to get a better consistency but I couldn't say without mixing it up first. The mix does need to be a hair thinner though, this one did not pour so much as glop onto the pan. I bet a dash of vanilla would help the general cake flavor as well.
As far as toppings my first instinct is to get some coconut syrup. We had this in Hawaii and I love it. It would be a match with the coconut shavings in the granola. Another possibility would be a fruit topping, maybe mango? Mango would compliment them well, but I'm not sure about how to go about a mango topping.
I definitely want to try this again, so I'm including all my notes here. Hopefully next time I'll get all the way to tasty tasty.
My base starting point was The Fanny Farmer Cookbook, griddlecake recipe. I added the granola mix and increased the amount of milk because the batter was way too thick.
3/4 - 1 cups of milk
2 tablespoons butter, melted
1 cup flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
2 tablespoons sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup Udi's Hawaiian granola (chop large pieces of macadamia & pineapple before adding to batter)
Beat milk, butter & egg lightly in mixing bowl. Mix flour, baking powder, sugar & salt and add all at once to the first mixture, stir just enough to combine. Add granola mix, stiring in gently, do not over mix.
Using 1/4 cup scoop drop mix onto medium heat non-stick skillet. Cook about 1 1/2 minutes per side, until lightly browned. (My mix was so thick that I did not see much bubbling like I normally would with a pancake. Instead when they were ready to turn the cake would start to get taller.)
I got a yield of 9 (3 1/2 inch) pancakes.
Friday, August 21, 2009
The worst part about how boring babies are, is that for the most part the only times that they aren't boring are really terrible. When they are wailing and thrashing their limbs about it isn't boring at all, but it certainly isn't fun either.
The first few weeks were the worst, because he spent hardly any time awake. I almost felt like I was swaddling him too much and not encouraging him to be awake. Sometimes it seemed like all he wanted to do was eat and sleep. Like all his awake time was miserable for him and my efforts to soothe him by feeding, changing, cuddling, were only to help him get back to sleep. I worried I was a bad mom for not trying to keep him awake longer.
Now that Max is able to spend some time awake I'm much more secure with my decisions to let him sleep as much as he wants. If he's awake and happy then we play. He likes his activity gym, we can cuddle up on the couch, or lay on the bed listening to music, and sometimes we read. When he's not happy we troubleshoot: food, diaper, burping, and if all else fails then a little cuddling usually sends him off to dream land. Okay sometimes it takes a LOT of cuddling, but you know what I mean.
Still, these awake times are definitely getting to be more fun, and we still have so far to go. Just yesterday we were playing on the floor and I finally got proof that Max really does smile. I missed the best ones that happened when Bullet sniffed him on the nose, but I was able to grab this with my iPhone.
Thursday, August 20, 2009
The first thing that struck me was gratitude that the yogurt had muesli in it, and not just a flavor of muesli. The second was that the flavor seemed familiar. After musing on it for a bit I've come to the conclusion that it reminds me of apple Hi-Chew candy. It's not that surprising since the candy is yogurt and this yogurt has apple in it.
Back to the yogurt, it has all sorts of stuff in it. Apple, pear, oats, nuts, including some rather nice pieces of hazelnut, and 1 huge raisin. It was pleasant, but too sweet for me. It's sweet in a fruity way, but still really sweet. If you like to add all sorts of stuff (like muesli) to your yogurt, then this is one stop shopping for you. Everything is already there and in a nice proportion to save you a step.
I would get it again for free for sure, I've definitely done worse. I might even try it again once in a while for kicks depending on how much it costs.
*I got one of each for curiosity's sake. The other flavor is pink grapefruit and I'm a little scared. At least now that I've had this sweet muesli I have hope that the pink grapefruit will also be sweet, and not some scary sour bomb.
Wednesday, August 19, 2009
I'm working on my socks that were Round 4 of Sock Madness this year. The first of the pair only needs a heel (and I might rip out the cuff to make it a little looser) so I'm currently working to get the second to the same place. Obviously I fell out of the competition on these. In a group where pairs of socks are completed in hours you can't spend months on a single one.I picked up the second sock on August 1st and have managed to complete the first diamond and over half of the second in these 2 and a half weeks. I feel my knitting mojo coming back to me. I'm finding patterns that I want to knit, and knit for real not just imagine that if I did knit they would be fun. I'm going to try and contain myself for a while longer though. I have a lot (like 4 or more) of socks in progress right now, and I already have yarn and a pattern for a scarf that I want to do. Then there's all the fiber that I have to work on spinning into yarn, and coming up with something playful to knit out of it.
First things first, these socks are the closest to done, so I'll keep working on them and see if I can finish this month. I'm hoping the red yarn holds out long enough to finish the cuff on the second sock. They're probably going to end up with purple heels but I'd rather not have purple cuffs too.
Tuesday, August 18, 2009
The yogurt part was good, and the pudding part was good, and I ate the entire portion. However I don't think I want to eat it a second time. I think I prefer to keep my pudding and yogurt in separate bowls.
Other Brown Cow flavors that I've tried and really like are vanilla, blueberry, and cherry vanilla. I like the fruit that they put in them (well you know the flavors that have fruit). The only other flavor that I've tried so far is raspberry and I didn't enjoy it. There are too many seeds, and it just gives it a bit too much texture. I don't like gritty yogurt.
Just a heads up here, I have 3 other strange (to me) flavors of yogurt waiting in the fridge. So you'll probably be hearing more from me on the subject, especially since one of them is "seasonal".
Sunday, August 16, 2009
For reference here is a photo of the nursery when we first moved in. Like the rest of the house it was painted exclusively in chalky KB White. Also like the rest of the house, it was empty. For a brief while it looked like a storage shed, as I piled various boxes of baby clothes and toys with no rhyme or reason.Then Jeff spent hours painting the room from top to bottom. With 3 shades of blue feathered together it already looked way cooler than it started. Next we added the crib, a green rug, red dresser, some storage tubs and lots of toys.We still have more decorating plans, but it already looks great. I'm very excited to have this room put together. I'm also enjoying using a proper changing table. The height is much better than changing him in the Pack N Play.
Max has taken a couple of naps in his room, and he seems to really like it. He sleeps pretty soundly as long as no one opens the door to take a peek at him. Of course, I say that but he's taking a nap in the living room right now while I write this post and watch NCIS on the tv. So maybe he just sleeps well when he sleeps well, and the nursery is having a streak of good luck.
Tuesday, July 28, 2009
If you are unfamiliar with the Swiffer concept, google it, because I keep trying to describe what it looks like and I'm failing utterly. More than likely though you've seen an ad for one or seen them in the grocery store. By and large I think the original Swiffer is junk.* It will grab hair and dust pretty well, but larger particles of dirt end up being pushed around, not picked up. The Swifvac builds on the concept of a dust collector by adding a low powered vacuum to the end of it and a tiny canister to catch what it collects.
Before getting the Swifvac I was using an old broom (that really needs replacing) to clean the downstairs. We have 2 rooms of Pergo, tile by the front door, and linoleum through the kitchen and laundry room. The sweeping was always a horrid chore because all the cat hair just flew around and landed back down once you were done. Trying to get the swept material off the floor into the garbage was yet another challenge, and then the dust barely clinging to the end of the broom bristles that wouldn't come off in the trash can where I wanted them, but instead clung on until over a clean bit of floor...
I'm pretty sure the floor is getting cleaner than when I swept manually, since the fine particles don't just get to fly around and land back down behind me. It's definitely easier to manage, and that means that it gets done more often which is a good thing.
I am frugal, and a bit environmentally concerned, so I don't buy the disposable Swiffer cloths to use with it. We took an old t-shirt and cut it up so that I have several reusable cloths to use. The t-shirt does really well with the fine dirt, dust, and cat hair. I recommend cutting up a t-shirt over all the other reusable cloths I found when I googled for options. Most of them are far more time consuming, and probably don't work much better.
My only real complain is the battery life is not great. By the time I'm nearing the end of the downstairs it is running out and the suction plummets down from "not great" to "ha ha yeah right". My work around is to rotate which room I start with, and make sure I go after the dirty spots first saving the lower traffic areas for last.
When they gave me the Swiffer they also gave me a box of the wet wipes for "mopping". I put that in quotes because it's basically like wiping down your floor with a baby wipe. It does remove some dirt, even after first using the dry cloth, but you're leaving something behind too. It doesn't do anything for removing a drip that has dried from the night before, and I'm only using them because we have them. I wouldn't ever recommend buying them. Once we run out I'll have to investigate reusable wet pads, I'm thinking maybe one of the shammys I found when we moved might work well. So far it seems that if you want a mopped floor then you have to mop the floor. I have to tell you that I like mopping even less than I like sweeping.
All in all if you have a moderate amount of smooth uncarpeted floor that you need to sweep regularly then I highly recommend getting someone else to buy you a Swiffer Sweepervac. If you'd like to test drive one, you are more than welcome to come over and clean my floors sometime. Just let me know in advance so I can make sure the battery is charged.
*Statement based on performace of the Swiffer Sweepervac when it has run out of batteries, and is relying on the Swifferness of itself to finish cleaning the floor.
Wednesday, July 22, 2009
Alyssa 7/21/09 19:03, 5 lbs 13.8 oz, 18 in
Ethan 7/21/09 19:06, 5 lbs 3.2 oz, 18 3/4 in
We also took Max up to Flextronics so my coworkers could visit with him. They were all smitten with his good looks, and he was remarkably well behaved. Then Jeff had to stop by one of his clients on the way home, where Max had a snack and a diaper change. Luckily the office wasn't busy and no one had to listen to his screaming for long. We grabbed a burger for us to split and ran home so I could pump and Max could get back to his busy day of relaxing.
It's time for some pasta and a glass of wine. Max is sleeping in the swing, and things are good.
Tuesday, July 21, 2009
I don't have any spectacular labor stories to tell. It was pretty uneventful. Although I was pretty entertained by the way the pulse ox made my finger look like E.T.'s.I tried to get Jeff to Twitter something for me about it, but this was before the epidural and apparently another contraction came and the tweet just went by the wayside. We were only in the hospital for about 8 hours before our son was born, so pretty much all the fun stuff happened later.
Blog meet Maxwell Everett Kievlan, born June 26th 2009 at 2:59 pm. He was 8 lbs 8 oz and 22 inches long.There were all sorts of bumps along the road to where we are now. Jeff got a worse stomach bug than me on Saturday night, the day after Max was born. I'll spare you any details, but it was super bad times. Then Max and I had problems with breastfeeding, and lucky for you I did not take pictures of my scabby nipples so I can't show you the horror that was. It was bad though, bad enough to warrant a $60 prescription cream to heal them. The lactation consultant couldn't find anything wrong with Max's latch, and felt that the problem was with his tongue not sticking out properly. We tried to work through it, but after a week and a half I couldn't handle the pain anymore. Even trying to alternate breastfeeding and pumping for a bottle wasn't letting the nipples heal up. They looked better than they did on day 5, but every time he tried to feed they would get injured all over again.
Max was also losing weight over the course of the first week. If everyone's scales were accurate he dropped from 8 lbs 8 oz, down to 7 lbs 9 oz. To make sure that he was getting enough to eat we started supplementing formula feedings into his schedule. He immediately started sleeping better, and gaining some weight back. We go back tomorrow for another weight check, but at his 2 week check-up he'd made it back to 8 lbs.
Once I decided to exclusively pump and give him breast milk that way it was obvious that I needed help getting my milk to come in better. The lactation consultant recommended herbal supplements, but I balked at the volume of capsules that she wanted me to consume. I decided to call my OB and talk about the prescription drug option, which is Reglan. The nurse said no problem, and that people rarely have side effects and had an order phoned in for me. Well, I got me some side effects. I ended up with drowsiness, sleeplessness, anxiety, and I couldn't eat more than 4 bites of food every 5 or 6 hours so I was always starving. It took me 3 days to figure out the medication was to blame, and that it wasn't just "new mom crazies". Luckily the anxiety that had built up to the point of low grade panic attacks went away within a day of stopping the medication. Looking back on that first week now I can barely remember it. We were so tired at first, I guess - I don't really remember, and then I started that medication and everything went away. I have no idea how I made it through the weekend, and I can see why everyone kept asking if I was okay and looking at me a little funny.
The morning I stopped taking Reglan I spoke with the lactation consultant again and she said that she considered Reglan a last resort, because many of the women she has worked with have had side effects. So once again she recommended the Fenugreek and Blessed Thistle, only 2 pills of each 3 times a day... *sigh* So that's what I'm taking now. It may or may not be helping. I am producing more milk, but I've also been pumping 6-7 times a day for a couple weeks now and that could be part of the increase as well. Still, other than having strange smelling sweat and urine I'm not having any side effects, so I'm thrilled with the results. We're still having to give him formula, but I'm able to pump about 2/3 a days worth of milk for him now, instead of less than half.
Monday, June 15, 2009
The house quickly emptied by the time the movie was about to start. That's the problem with movie "night". Our group doesn't do night as well as it used to, and by 8pm when the movie is ready to start a lot of people are ready to head out so the kids can climb into bed. Still, some folks might have stayed if I had picked a more kid friendly film. Rosemary's Baby is not kid friendly. Only 4 of us were left by the time the movie came on, and none of us remembered how kid unfriendly it got, or how fast. So any of you thinking about watching it at home, take my warning and don't watch it with the kids. Still, I enjoyed the movie and I'm glad that I picked it because it had been a long time since I saw it. I bet the last time I watched it was on tv and that's why I don't remember some bits, they were probably edited for content. The funniest moment came when Rosemary finds out her due date is June 28th, just a day after my due date. That cracked us all up.
Due dates are a funny thing. Everyone knows that you can't count on that date to be accurate, but we can't help but hope anyway. I've hit the end of my rope with this pregnancy thing, and I'm officially ready for this baby to be born. If I thought he would care I'd threaten or bribe him anyway I could think of in order to convince him that it was time to leave my body. I'm tired of being tired all the time. I'm tired of not being able to bend over, or having it cause me pain or exhaustion. I'm tired of being thumped, kicked, stretched, and otherwise abused from the inside out. I'm tired of having a pain I compare to getting a pap smear done repeatedly for sometimes 30 minutes or more at a time. But not all my feelings are of frustration. I'm excited by the prospect of being able to see what this little creature looks like, and play with his little toes. I'm ready for his dad to be able to hold him and cuddle him, and for me to be able to see them together. I'm ready for him to have a name and to hear other people use it, so maybe we need to settle on a middle name... It would be nice if the nursery were actually ready, but at this point I don't care. I'll take the baby now and the nursery later, thank you very much.
I officially have 12 days to go until the promised due date, but it if were less that would be okay by me.
Tuesday, June 9, 2009
The cats seem to have settled in. They no longer look forward to being locked up in our bedroom, they want to be left out all day and night to see what they can get into. We're nervous about this, since there are still pieces of furniture that need to be secured so they don't tip over, but we're going to have to let them out sooner or later. It's nice to know that they are ready.
It's time to get the china cabinet secure so the cats can roam free, and it's time to get to work in the nursery. We only have 2 1/2 weeks before our due date so there's no time to lose now. I don't care if it's fully decorated yet, because Jeff does have some grand plans, but I'd like to get the painting done so that I can move in the furniture and have a functional room.
Still, we're finding time for all sorts of little baby worries. I had a great dream the other day that I had a baby girl and the next day I was at work when I realized that since she had been born I hadn't fed her. Oops. Not a real fear I have, I mean I've never even forgotten to feed a cat that long and I have less biological drive to keep them alive. Not to mention that I will use my mind to put out the sun before I go back to work 24 hours after having this baby. The real fears that I have center around doctor visits and what they will say.
I was worried that the ultrasound would find that our boy was still sideways, and that we'd need to schedule an ECV. Although I was almost sure over the weekend he had settled into the correct position. Happily the ultrasound showed he was head down, and Dr Darby is pretty sure he'll stay that way, apparently the baby is pretty well down? (very scientific these docs can be) So now I have a regular OB appt tomorrow and I have new fears. Fear number one is that all of a sudden baby won't be head down anymore, and that he was just performing well for the ultrasound because he's mean and he wants to torment me. I don't think this one is likely, but the nagging worry is there. Fear number two is that although I was dilated to 1 cm last week, and had a couple of decent contractions over the weekend, that tomorrow she'll find that I'm not dilated at all, completely sealed shut. Fear number three is that she'll check and find that I'm dilated to like 4 cm or something and declare that I need to cross the street to go have a baby, and I am not ready for that. So on the one hand I feel pretty calm since I'm not freaking out worrying about crazy things that can go wrong, but on the other hand I feel pretty silly because I'm worrying about relatively trivial things that are unlikely to even happen.
Wednesday, May 27, 2009
This morning I learned that our new bathroom drawers are for cats. The following traits have made them irresistible to Cabbit and Spooky.
- The drawer is eye level with them
- The drawer is easy to grab from the side and pull open with a paw
- The drawer is deep enough to fit a hunkered down cat
- Apparently while inside you can push/pull something to slide your drawer in and out over and over and over and over and over....
So that's how I woke up this morning. The sound of a drawer opening and closing repeatedly. Upon investigation I found a cat inside. While making a pee stop before heading back to bed the sound started again, and when I reopened the drawer there was a different bigger cat inside. To preserve my sanity and keep from chucking any cats out windows at 5 am I used some painters tape to secure all the drawers and climbed back into bed. They've already started to chew through the tape, so this solution won't last for long.
I'm now a little afraid to let them into the rest of the house. I had no idea how much trouble they could find in just our master bath and bedroom. I have ideas on how much trouble they can cause with free roam over the rest of the house, especially since we aren't unpacked yet, but I suppose that's just life right now. I want to let them have a couple days to explore before we have company come over this weekend, and frankly Spooky and Bullet are ready to get out and see what's beyond the bedroom door. Dinah may not wander far, but I'll be happy if I don't find one of those two on a ceiling fan before the day is out. Thank god that cats don't have wings.
Tuesday, May 26, 2009
Thursday, April 30, 2009
Tuesday, April 28, 2009
Pardon the whiteness of my legs; I don't tan. To be more exact my skin does not tan easily when exposed to the sun, and my legs have not seen much sun lately.
Round 4 starts Thursday night, and hopefully that will keep me out of trouble. Jeff's parents are coming in town to help fix up the new house this weekend and that means extra people trying to keep me from doing things they don't think I should be doing. If I at least have a pair of socks to distract me, then maybe it won't drive me crazy when they won't let me help with painting and laying flooring. Sometimes being pregnant and having people who care about you can be a real pita.
I'd also like to take a class at Hill Country Weavers this weekend, but it costs money, and we're trying to save money for house stuff, not to mention the whole bit about inlaws coming in town. Although, that's also an excellent reason to sign up for a class that gets me out of the house for a couple of hours each day. I'll hopefully make up my mind one way or another soon, and preferably before the class fills up.
Friday, April 24, 2009
House Number 2
Here is a house that creates peace, harmony and balance in anyone's lives. It is a house suited for relationships, and people who are laid back and friendly. This is a great home for new lovers or people who have lived together for a long time. It will aid in the balancing of any relationship.
However sometimes we are so laid back that one may call it laziness. So don't forget to get off the sofa and DO. Do what needs to be done to fix the creaky floorboards and cracks in the pavement with this house.
Positive Colour Suggestions: Cream, Green and White.
Well thank goodness that we've picked green as one of our house colors. I don't know what would have happened otherwise. Perhaps our sloth inducing couch would raise on it's rear legs and force us into slave labor.
Get your house numerology here.
Sunday, April 19, 2009
This past week Toby passed away. I think it happened during the night, and it didn't look like he suffered, so that's good. He was an old dragon, and towards the end we knew it was coming. He stopped being motivated to eat, and just seemed ready to go.
He's buried under the china berry tree out back, so if you're the next person to rent our duplex, don't dig him up please.
Thursday, April 16, 2009
So I'm sitting here at work, and honestly I have no idea what I should be doing. I've been ready to go home since 2. My brain just seemed to click off and decide that the work day should be ended, and that it was done thinking. Since then I've managed to remember a couple of things I'm supposed to have done, and even done them all I think. I still have an hour or more of sitting here to do, doomed to spend most of it staring into space.
I finished Round 2 of Sock Madness III within the limit of the first 20 people of my division. I thought that I would be barely squeaking in, I think I was number 16 or 17, but since then the going has been slow and we are still waiting for the elusive number 20 to finish up. This was a difficult pattern, but something strange must have happened, because by all rights this round should have ended a while ago. Honestly I was so slow I shouldn't have made it in, and I wouldn't have if I were in a faster division. I am 90% sure that I will not make it through round 3. I do like these socks, and the stranding means that they mostly fit my foot. This is a good thing since I plan to keep them for myself. The pattern is called Tokena and is based on some funky basket weave pattern. The astute will notice that I am not using the same colors that were shown in the previous post, it didn't work out so well. I swapped the multi-color over to a more solid green, and it shows the stitch work a lot better.
We're still waiting to close on the house. I'll find out more tomorrow, but we're hopeful that we will be able to close on Monday. On the one hand I'm a bit bummed that it's going to happen after the weekend, because that's one less weekend that we have to do house stuff, but on the other hand this weekend is our wedding anniversary. As long as we know for sure when we are closing tomorrow then we can just celebrate this weekend, and relax without feeling pressured to be working on projects. Although I might have to start doing a little packing, only a little though. I'm so glad that we don't have to be completely moved until May 31st, because I have been one lazy slug lately, and I couldn't stand to have to hurry though this process.
Friday, April 3, 2009
I'm excited by the two colors that I've chosen, and super curious to find out how they are going to mix together. We were told to pick two solids, or one solid color and one semi-solid... I didn't do that so much. At least one of them is solid colored, but the other is just pretty. I can already tell that I'm going to have a hard time falling asleep tonight, because I'm really looking forward to knitting these socks. I hope that it comes together in a pleasing way, or I shall be put out. For your viewing pleasure I present my yarns.
[Left to Right: Shibui Sock in Honey (1395) and Shibui Sock in Stone (51302)]
Thursday, April 2, 2009
It's looking as if to get Round 2 down to under 2 weeks they are going to have to limit the number of people moving on to 20. This sounds like a huge cut, from 40 down to 20 but as it stands several of the groups only have 26-27 people who have finished. Of course Round 1 was full of new techniques for most of us, and there were tales of lost socks or major issues that necessitated starting completely over. It's possible that Round 2 will go by quicker if it runs smoother for the participants.
Me, I think I'm going to take advantage of the sale at Hill Country Weaver's tonight. It's the monthly 1st Thursday sale and sock yarns happen to be 20% off. I do have sock yarn in the stash that I can use for socks in general, but I don't really have anything that fits the specs for the next round. The next round is slated to start some time Saturday, and of course I will be busy and unable to print the pattern. Still, I will get it on my iPhone and get cracking to the best of my ability.
Wednesday, April 1, 2009
In stepped the Beddinge from Ikea. The end goal for this sofa bed (aka futon) is to end up in the office upstairs so that the room can double as a guest room. If we ever replace our bed, then it may move to the guest room and the futon can move into the loft space as a couch. So it really seemed like an ideal furniture purchase for the moment. We had been thinking about it for a while, but hadn't planned on purchasing it ahead of time until bulky trash day came about March 30. An opportunity to quickly, easily, and cheaply dispose of a broken sofa could not be missed.
Tuesday, March 31, 2009
For Jeff's birthday cake he requested that I bake him a Guinness Cake. I decided to add cocoa to the top, because it looked so pretty on the cupcakes and so very plain without it.I think that I like the flavor of the cupcake better than that of the cake, but the cake is definitely a denser more cake like food. The texture of the cake is a lot nicer I think, although maybe not for a cupcake. I liked the icing recipe with the cake much better than the cupcakes, it has more cream cheese flavor and less just SUGAR flavor.
The cupcake recipe was a bit easier, since it didn't involve melting things together on the stove, but all in all they are both pretty easy and worth it. So far they've both been a big hit, even with folks that don't enjoy Guinness.
The other thing that we did Sunday was throw out our broken down couch. It's been good to us, but the wooden frame was giving out, and seeing as how this is our last bulky trash day before we move it seemed like a good time to get rid of it. Once the beast was outside you could see a place where the wood frame had broken and punched a hole through the back of the couch fabric. It's really a miracle that we never lost someone inside that thing. So it's gone now and today we picked up a temporary replacement. I'll have more on that later.
Friday, March 27, 2009
Last night Jeff and I saw Time Steps, the 11th annual Out of Ink festival from Austin Script Works, at the Blue Theater. It was a series of 8 plays written over a retreat weekend that were to conform to the following 3 rules:
The play must go backward, from beginning to end
Include a sudden dance break that causes a shift in the action
Include three things your mother told you not to do
All in all it was a very enjoyable experience. There was a good mix of drama, suspense, and comedy. Supposedly they were 10 minute plays, but that only accounts for 80 minutes plus a ten minute intermission, and we were there for almost two hours so I think one or two may have run a little longer.
Out of the whole lot there was only one play that I didn't really enjoy. It was okay, and Jeff liked it much more than I did, but I couldn't get into it. I'm not going to name it because I have nothing constructive to say about it and I don't want to put down any of the hard work that went into it. Instead I'll tell you what I felt were some major highlights of the night.
My favorite drama piece of the night was Where the Sidewalk Ends by Meg Haley. It was a really compelling story, and if you need a girl to cry in your next play you should check out Kathleen Fletcher, because that was hard to watch. She was also good when she wasn't crying; I'm just saying that girl can turn on the sorrow.
My favorite character of the night was Bernard, played by David Gallagher in Bernard Henry's Magic Tricks by Aimee Gonzalez. He was funny and charming and so much fun to cheer on. He reminded us a lot of the character Andrew from the Buffy tv series. Kind of a goofy innocence about him that ends up causing quite a bit of trouble, but despite it all you still like him and are routing for him.
My favorite dance of the night was done by Kelli Bland in Dancing Counts by Susan McMath Platt. I've never in my life seen someone in a cow suit perform such a great dance routine. Nicole Marosis as Aunt Charlotte provided a great backdrop and counter point to the wild cow dance that was happening across the rest of the stage. It was hysterical.
Finally my favorite monologue, by a huge margin, was in Hungry Love by Timothy Thomas. I've always loved the St Crispin's Day speech from Henry V and in my mind I always see it as done by Kenneth Branagh in the 1989 film version. Tim takes that speech and tweaks it to become a St Valentine's Day speech instead, but still with the same sound, mood, and fervor of the original. Zeb L. West did an awesome job delivering the speech and rallying the troops with his call to arms as he climbed in and out of the audience. It was full of win.
Jeff and I had a good time, and I recommend you go check it out. Time Steps only runs two weekends though so don't wait too long.
Monday, March 23, 2009
The round 1 pattern is called Tropical Mertini, and was a pretty hard easy knit. The pattern itself wasn't terribly difficult, but I had to learn an entirely new (to me) cast on method, and then it was written with an afterthought heel. This means that I knit all of the sock except the heel first, which left me with socks like this until today.
On Thursday morning I started with this:
After four and a half days (plus about an hour) I ended up with:
Not bad, but definitely not the best time I've ever made. Last year I managed one of the pairs in just two days, but this one did have several challenges for me in learning new techniques. The socks are very baggy on me, so they may end up being gifted. First I need to see what happens to them after they are washed. There is a metallic strand in the yarn that is a bit scratchy, and if it's too uncomfortable then they will turn into some house socks for me. My feet are always cold, so it's not like they won't get used.
A non-knitting reason these took so long to knit is that we went to San Antonio to visit some of my family this weekend. Since my cousin (the over worked Houston doctor) and I were both in the same place at the same time all sorts of people came out of the wood work. It was a blast. I really need to not wait so long before the next time I go to visit. We finished the weekend by heading out to lunch with just my cousin and her husband. We went to Jacala's which has been a family tradition as long as I can remember. It was a lot of fun and Kathy and I were both glad to get a chance to go while we were in town.
Last St Patrick's Day I found a recipe for Guinness cupcakes. They looked great, but I never got around to making them until this year. Jeff loves Guinness so I figured they'd get eaten by someone, even if I didn't care for them. I was really impressed with the recipe. I was concerned because it made a very runny batter, but it baked great and stayed fluffy and moist. The thing I was really shocked about is that I followed the directions and ended up with a cupcake that looked like the picture advertised or maybe even better. You can be the judge of that. I can tell you that it makes a tasty cupcake, and although a Guinness drinker may like it more than other folks it is plenty yummy even if you normally hate the taste. The beer adds just a hint of bitter really, more than a complete Guinness flavor. I hate Guinness, so that's okay by me.That picture is just a crappy iPhone pic. You will just have to imagine how much better they look in person. I'd love to share, but I'm afraid the remnants are going to work tomorrow and I don't think they'll survive the day.
Wednesday, March 18, 2009
Once you decide it's time to buy a house you might think that finding a house that you like/love, in your price range, in a neighborhood that doesn't scare you because of the crack dens or Stepford-ness of it, is the hard part. You look through listings online. You enlist friends to look through listings online. You have a realtor looking through listings and sending you messages every day or two. You trek all across town multiple times a week sometimes marking off large swaths of the map that you never want to visit again, other times wistfully gazing at the property whose value is a little too high for your current needs. Yeah, that's not the hard part.
The hardest part of buying a house is waiting for other people to do the shit they need to do. See, once you find that house that you want you get to make an offer. You sign some papers promising to pay some amount of money and then you send it away to the seller. If you're unlucky you aren't the only one who liked what they saw. We had to wait for the seller to decide that they wanted to let everyone submit a second round of offers so that we could wait some more before they finally accepted our offer on the house. Mind you they accepted our offer on Feb 26th, and we have been waiting since then for them to sign the contract and send it back. We have been waiting about 20 days for them to sign a piece of paper that they had already agreed to verbally and mail the damn thing back. Really? Seriously? I mean, I'm a procrastinator, but even I'm not that bad. This unsigned contract has meant that the mortgage broker could not submit the loan app, the realtor could not schedule the house inspection, and meanwhile we have been marching on, steadily getting closer and closer to the date of April 6th that was printed on that unsigned contract as our closing date. We have been waiting for this contract to come back for longer than we have left to go until that close date. That's just nuts. Of course, I still don't know that anyone has a copy of this so-called executed contract yet. I was told that the seller's agent has it and that she is sending it to our realtor and our mortgage broker, but I don't know if she's done it yet. Still, if it's signed I'm a happy camper. If I have to, I will find her and drive to her house to pick it up personally tomorrow just to get this show on the road.
Now we're waiting to find out when we'll inspect the house (hopefully this week) and then we get to wait and make sure the loan goes through. We are pre-approved for the loan, but I'll be nervous until it's all said and done. All this waiting is what is really getting to me. You sit and you wait and there is nothing that you can do that will make things go any faster or easier, like being on hold listening to some terrible muzak playing the same two songs over and over, except that in the end hopefully you get a house.