Greetings from San Diego! Daniel and I got to my parents house last Friday and have been having a nice time away from home. Regardless of the friends we've made in Bakersfield, it's always nice to escape to a new environment for a while. My parents left on Christmas Eve for their timeshare on Coronado, so we've had their house to ourselves for the past few days. Well, not really. We're sharing their house with their dog, Buffy, their African Grey, Palucci and our own dog children. So far we've just been relaxing. We went and saw Night at the Museum during the afternoon on Christmas Eve and had a nice dinner out. We've spent a lot of time in a local coffee house writing and relaxing. We cooked at home last night and plan on doing so for the next couple nights as well.
In between all our relaxing we've gone baby shopping with some of our Christmas money. We've decided on a crib and changing table in black. I've decided I don't need an ottoman to go with the glider we plan on getting. We spent $18 on four big butterflies (in fuchsia, purple, chartreuse and blue) to hang on the walls and from the ceiling. I just put a 1/3 down on an inexpensive (but adorable) crib bedding set that Daniel and I both really like. It's girlie without being over the top...and it goes with the butterflies. The colors are lavender, plum, white and lime green with butterflies and flowers. I'm very happy to have found it because we've been sort of difficult to please when it comes to bedding. Neither of us is a huge fan of pink, and every infant bedding place seems to think pink is the best color to use. OY. Watch, the ultrasound tech was wrong and we're really having a boy! We'll still be thrilled and I made sure the bedding we're getting is exchangeable just in case.
But enough about baby stuff... for now.
We have two more nights of staying at my parent’s house and then we'll switch places with them and stay in their timeshare on Friday and Saturday nights. Our gift to them this year was a day at the Zoo, (they want experiences, not objects) so that's what we're all doing on Friday. We'll probably spend Saturday in the city and then head back to my parents house Sunday afternoon to celebrate New Years (and Daniel's birthday) with my dad while my mom works. I'll be sad to get back on the road Monday - back to real life and the end of our little getaway.
I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas and that you have a safe and fun New Years Eve! I’ll be back to regular blogging next Tuesday.
So yesterday evening I asked Daniel if he had learned anything new about me from my post yesterday.
"I didn't know you lived in Bellevue, Washington."
And then my eyes popped open. "Because I didn't! I lived in Ballard, Washington...a neighborhood in Seattle!"
Ack! I felt like a big old liar, but I was too tired to go back and correct it on my post for yesterday. Also, I haven't found photographic evidence of my adult blondeness yet...so this is my lame excuse at still posting for you. You, my loyal non commenting readers. *Wink* Wink*
Nanette tagged me, so here goes! Five things you may or may not know about me - depending on how long you've known me, whether or not you pay attention, etc.
1. I've moved around a lot since I was a little baby. Reno, Nevada. Bellevue, Washington. Various cities in California. Various cities in Illinois. Someday, we'll probably end up in Texas. While I don't have any complaints about all the moving, I do hope my kids can grow up in the same area. Plus, I'm tired of moving.
2. If you were looking at me right now, you'd be able to tell from my lovely roots, (that I haven't touched up since I was about 4 weeks pregnant) I was not born a brunette. I was actually quite the little blondie until I started dying my hair for shows in 8th grade.
When I was 22, I started going blonder again and eventually started to get gutsy. Well, gutsy for me. First I went really blonde on top/black underneath. Then I went all dark, dark brown. Then I added bright red streaks. If I weren't so lazy, I'd search out photographic evidence...but I am feeling lazy so... too bad.
Side note: I have a feeling Zoe will be a blonde as well since Daniel actually had very light hair as a youngster.
3. When I was little, I didn't really like the Tom & Jerry or Looney Tunes (especially Roadrunner & Coyote and Sylvester & Tweety) cartoons. I would get upset at how mean they were to each other and I would cry. Apparently, I've never been one for conflict....or I've always been a wuss. It depends how you want to look at it.
4. I took voice lessons with an opera Diva when I was in high school and could sing anywhere from low alto to a very high soprano. I was in 3 operas and had to sing mostly opera in my lessons. I loved my teacher and getting to exercise my voice, but what I really wanted to do was sing in a band or sing jazz standards. Never happened. Maybe someday.
5. I have always read magazines back to front. I don't really know why. That's just "how I roll". Um, yeah. I read books in the traditional front to back way.
I'm not going to tag anyone specific for this one. What I am going to ask, is that if you do this meme - let me know so I can learn more about you. Also, if you're a lurker...email me or comment! Introduce yourself! Don't leave me hanging....
You're so not going to comment, even after my pleading. I see how it is.
So, last night Daniel and I are eating our very low carb meal (more on that later) watching an episode from season one of Smallville ($15.99 at Costco!). We're entertained. I'm savoring every bit of rice I'm allowed to eat. The show is entertaining. We finish dinner and keep watching. Max jumps on my lap and leans against my belly (and Zoe) while he switches back and forth between staring longingly at my empty plate and tries to lick my face (for food remnants?). Clark and Lana are on Lana's front porch and Clark is just about to kiss Lana when her aunt comes out and sends him home. Score one for the aunt. Teenagers kissing on porches! Geez. As the future mother of a teenage girl, I cringe at the thought. We keep watching. Lana is waiting for Clark in the barn loft. They're going to watch the sunset together. They're supposed to be playing freshman, but the actors clearly look like seniors, at least. I mean, I know Clark is Superman...but the actor playing him is not 13 or 14 years old and either is the girl playing Lana. Come on!
The idea of canoodling on front porches and inside barn lofts is too much for me. I start imagining our Zoe as a little freshman doing the same thing. Ack!
"When Zoe has a 'friend' over, I need for you to be in the way and just try to lick that 'friend' as much as possible"
Max gives me a look like he knows exactly what I'm talking about and Duh! What else would he do? He loves licking people’s faces!
There’s a pause as Daniel stares at me for a couple seconds.
"Oh, you mean Max?" 'Yes, honey. I mean Max. It would be awfully strange if you went and licked one of Zoe's friends! Her social life would never be the same."
We laugh. Daniel acts likes he's interupting Zoe and 'friend' and starts licking the air.
Clearly, we both have some parenting issues to work through. At least we have a few years before we have to be concerned about her dating.
Even after me having a tiny cup of coffee this morning, Zocon was just not budging for the ultrasound tech, me, or Daniel. It seems our baby is a hard sleeper...and we're liking that just fine. :) After a whole lot of pushing and shaking by all of us, Zocon stretched the legs out straight and crossed them making it extrememly difficult to see what was what. When I saw the umbilical cord I mistook it for "something else" and was speechless for a moment or two since it was as long or longer than the legs. Luckily, the tech noted for us that we were seeing the umbilical cord. I don't know how they're able to distinguish everything so quickly. With a little more movement, we were finally able to see what we were there to see:
ZOCON is a Zoe! Zoe Angeline Emery.
We're having a girl and we are so excited! :)
The tech pointed out to Daniel that not only is she a heavy sleeper, (I just think she's stubborn like her mom) but she is also private and shy.
We were both pretty certain we were having a boy. My dreams had been 50/50, but in the past couple days I'd been saying 'he' and 'him' a lot when referring to Zocon. After spending some time online searching for crib bedding and only really seeing girl stuff that I liked, we starting thinking it had to be a boy. Murphy's Law, you know. But we were wrong.
Daniel wants to start writing stories for Zoe featuring her as the main character ( a la The Diamond Age). This makes me immensely happy. He's also stated he gets the want for a little bit of pink, but is wanting us to lean more towards "Warrior Princess" instead of just "Princess" - meaning strong, independent girl. I can't imagine her as anything else. :)
In an effort to focus more on the positively wonderful things happening in our lives, Daniel and I have begun to seriously look at our options for Zocon's room. Cribs (convertable to toddler bed and full size). Changing tables. Gliders. Oh, my! We looked around a bit yesterday and found some nice options...less expensive options than the gorgeous, GORGEOUS crib we found at a local baby boutique for $599. The one we are so not getting because it's beyond our budget and the baby will probably grow up and hate it anyway.
So, today I surfed. I typed in 'baby furniture' in the good ol' Google and lists and lists of options appeared. My favorite of all of them was the Fantasy Crib. Not because I really want a fantasy crib for our baby, (I'm just not that frilly) but because the price of it sent me into hysterical laughter. Daniel and I scoff at $599 and there is actually a crib for the price of a car. And it doesn't even convert! Seriously, what is the world coming to? What baby needs this? I'm adding this to the list of things I do not understand.
After dinner last night, Daniel and I set about on the hard task of continuing to combine the office and guest room into one. We decided the small bookcase we’d kept writing books in would become a bookcase for the baby’s books. The difficult part was, Daniel had to pack away some textbooks that he enjoyed having accessible at his whim, and he parted with a few paperbacks. We’re recognizing these adjustments as the small sacrifices we must make to make room for baby. As Daniel sorted and reorganized his books, I became absorbed in keepsakes from our past. Yearbooks. Wedding memories. Photo albums.
I was particularly swept up in a small purple album that I had put together not long after Nana had passed away. To me, the color purple will always be synonymous with my Nana. She looked beautiful in purple, and I think she knew it. Plus, she loved that book: ‘When I’m an Old Woman I Shall Wear Purple’.
The pages of the purple photo album were filled with my family and Nana in her last days. There was one of my younger cousins holding Nana tight. There were a few of Nana holding Max on her lap. Nana loved Max and called him ‘Maxfield’. There were photos of my oldest cousins birthday party and a few of us celebrating Nana’s last birthday with us. In those photos, I am pictured smiling and laughing with tears in my eyes and a blotchy face. I would think it would be difficult for an outsider to distinguish what emotion I was actually feeling on that day. Was I laughing so hard I cried, or was the moment bittersweet for me? I think it was actually both.
About halfway through the album there are photos of my mom’s two sisters and two of my cousins. My aunts are drinking wine and all four of them are smiling and laughing as they look through an old photo album. There’s a photo of their two husbands. They are sitting in front of the Christmas tree and it looks like they are telling jokes or old stories. There’s one of me sitting between two of my cousins…all of us smiling. It is clear that we are related. There’s one of poor Bailey, standing on her hind legs at the back door begging to be let inside where all the people are. There are some goofy photos of Daniel and me. One of my favorite photos Daniel and I have ever taken with my dad is in the album. We are all in the kitchen, arms around each other. We look so happy to be together, a family. All of these photos were taken in the days after Nana had passed away. My family had gathered for nearly a week to be together, to celebrate Nana and to lean on one another.
The thing is, I struggled a little bit last night with how happy we all looked without Nana. I pulled Daniel over to look at the pictures with me and asked him if they seemed strange. Didn’t it seem out of place that we were all so happy together? We smiled and laughed and drank wine like we were at a party. The photos could have been taken at a reunion or a Christmas celebration. He said it all seemed normal to him at the time. “But it’s weird, right?”
Early this morning I was stirred awake by butterflies (Zocon?) in my stomach. Then I started feeling that lower back pain that I’ve come to get used to with this pregnancy. Between the fluttering and the jabbing pain, I was having a hard time going back to sleep. So I thought about the photo album. I thought about what Daniel had said about it seeming normal and I realized he was right. My family is just that way. We were all sad and missing Nana, but we’ve been through this as a family already when Pop-Pop died. We’re close. We get through things better when we can laugh and remember the good times. My family sticks together even when things are hard. It’s just what we do.
Nana and Pop-Pop had five children. All five children married and so I have a total of 8 aunts and uncles. I have 14 cousins, (4 of them have spouses). I have 5 second cousins with another one due a week or so before Zocon. My family is large and I love them all. Despite the miles between us, the different circumstances we deal with, our differences in politics and religion; we are all family. We are happy when we get to be together. There have been disagreements about each other’s spouses, children, beliefs - but my family doesn’t let that break us apart. My family hashes things out, agrees to agree or disagree and then moves on. If I ever needed anything my family would jump to help me and my growing family - and I would do the same for them. I know that they do not judge, even if they may have strong differing opinions. We may not all be best friends, (in fact, we might not have chosen to be each others friends at all if we weren’t family) but we’re linked because of our blood...because of Nana and Pop-Pop. We’re all different and I think we enjoy that.
I’m an only child. I have two brothers from my dad’s first marriage, but I didn’t grow up with them. Different cousins became my pseudo siblings and certain friends have become a part of our extended family. I am grateful for that, but I always wanted a brother or sister of my own. I’ve always admired the love my mom shares with her brothers and sisters and the closeness my cousins (and friends) felt with their siblings. I guess I've always romanticized what it must mean to have a sibling. I imagined it was a bond that couldn't be broken. I wanted that.
I want that for Zocon. I want Zocon to have a brother or sister. I want our kids to know my aunts and uncles and cousins. I want them to know Daniel’s sister. I want them to visit their two sets of grandparents like I got to. I want them to enjoy family reunions and shared holidays. I want them to feel comforted that they have a family who loves them, unconditionally. I want my children to know that if their parents can't be there for them, that there is a whole group of people in line to love them and support them in life. I want them to have memories of their family laughing together. I want them to feel like they always have someone to talk to. I want for them to be able to look at old photo albums and feel a connection with the people pictured. I want them to have everything I had and more. That's not too much, is it?
I know I promised you all a picture of our 'Charlie Brown' tree. It's coming, just not today. I struggled with the lighting in our living room last night when I tried to snap the photo and now I'm just not in the mood. Hey. It will give you something to look forward to. Um. Yeah.
I got a call from our OB/GYN office this afternoon informing me that I failed my glucose test. We had sort of prepared ourselves for this, but it's still kind of upsetting to me. I worry. I worry all the time, and this compounds that worry times ten. Daniel and I go back to the office tomorrow for a 3-hour Glucose test. I need to not have anything but water after 8 o'clock tonight to prepare for our 8 am testing. They'll take a fasting blood sample and then I'll drink a disgusting orange drink that does not taste like flat orange soda despite the lab techs urging. An hour later they will take more blood and then the hour after that...and the hour after that. Yep. You read that correctly: 4 blood draws in the span of three hours. I'm not especially looking forward to this. Thank goodness Daniel will be with me.
Before this whole baby adventure, I was quite the baby about getting poked with a needle. Having an IV put in, or blood drawn are two of my least favorite things ever. Ever! But, I've been sucking it up and being a big girl...for Zocon's sake. And I'm happy to do it. I mean, when all is said and done... we get a BABY! I've learned to look away and just keep breathing and it's usually over before I know it. Tomorrow is going to be a big test for me as far as how much I've grown up. This may sound silly, but I so want a treat afterwards. Like dinner and a movie...or a new CD and a new DVD. Hmmm. I want a prize for every vial of blood they take. Oooh. That would be kind of cool.
Anyway. Wish me luck. I have a feeling the results are going to tell us I have gestational diabetes. No biggie. It happens to a lot of pregnant women. We'll just have to monitor me and I'll meet with someone who is a diabetes expert and they will help me with my nutrition. Oy.
I've been out of touch lately. It's true. Since the holiday, I've been taking it easy. Daniel and I have been enjoying our time away from rehearsals for a show and really enjoying this part of the pregnancy and each other. We've even gotten to socialize with our friends, which has been nice. We love theatre, but there are so many other things we'd like to be able to do as well. I thought I'd try to bring you all up to speed on a few things and tell you about some things that have been occupying our last couple weeks.
Daniel and I went to the mall two days after Thanksgiving to have our iMacs* looked at. Mine was especially wonky and was highlighting things I'd typed if I touched anything other than the keyboard and then would erase my words. It was doing this paragraphs at a time and driving me nuts. Blogging had been a chore with this impairment. Turned out the wait time to have a "Genius" look at our laptops was just over two hours, so Daniel and I walked around for almost that entire time. We browsed. We sat on benches. We wasted time. We did not buy a single thing. It felt a little strange to be at the mall on one of the busiest weekends of the year for retail and not be shopping like everyone else. We weren't in the mood....and we're on what I like to call: The Pregnancy/Baby Budget. Friends and family will be getting smaller gifts this year.
After our two hour wait was up, a very nice "Genius" said my problem was my battery. Apple was replacing all batteries that had a certain set of id numbers on it, and mine was part of that deal. The fact that my battery was expanding also helped. Because Daniel's battery was made at the same time, he got a new one as well. We got two new batteries valued at $125 each for free. Yay us. Free stuff is nice when you're expecting a baby. Hell. Who am I kidding? Free stuff is almost always nice.
When we got back to my parents house from the mall, I spent the rest of the evening unpacking all of my parents Christmas decorations. Daniel built the tree and started decorating it. We got the house looking festive, and I was ready to pass out from exhaustion. We decided that we'd be doing a small tree at our house this year and doing minimal decorating. Minimal decorating is sort f easy to do since we don't have a lot of Christmas stuff yet. We have about 20 ornaments and a few things for around the house. No where near the plethora (see, there's my favorite word again!) of decorations that our two sets of parents have.
Anywho. Our visit with my parents was very nice, but we were glad to be home and have some time just us.
We've had some nice evenings at home watching movies.
We've been doing a lot of reading.
We had our first appointment with our new OB/GYN and both think he is very nice. He's got a great personality and we both feel really good about him as our doctor. He's probably my dad's age (but looks a lot older) and has a fun personality. I almost had a heart attack when he was looking for the baby's heartbeat with the Doppler and upon hearing it said, "Well, there's one." Turns out, this is his joke he does with just about everyone and we really do just have one in there. Not that we wouldn't have loved twins too, but Phew!
Daniel sings to the baby. Whether it's a song from one of the Muppet movies, a made up song about having to change Zocon's diapers, or just some strange impromtu beat box/sound effects medley - he cups his hands around his mouth on top of my belly and entertains me and Zocon. Technically Zocon won't be able to hear us for another few weeks, but seeing this side of Daniel is one of my favorite things about being pregnant.
We're just over 15 weeks along and easing into the second trimester very nicely. I've definitely got more than a bump happening and I love it. About a week ago I looked down at my bare tummy while I was laying in bed and saw it jumping up and down in quick movements. It was like Zocon was trying to send me morse code, or maybe doing the Cha Cha (not too surprising since I was doing the Cha Cha almost everyday of my first 6 weeks during 'The Full Monty'). It was awesome.
A couple nights ago, I woke up quickly after feeling a quick poke in the belly and then I felt it again stronger. Our doc says Zocon's a mover, and I'm feeling it first hand. I'm looking forward to Daniel being able to feel it too.
We're slowly making headway with the office becoming the nursery. Daniel and I went out and got shelving for the guest room closet and cleared a lot of office stuff away. Our file cabinet has been moved and the office closet is almost completely empty. I dropped off tons of clothing at Goodwill today and gave a few costume worthy pieces to The Spotlight. It feels good to see progress.
I've been busy planning our little Christmas break. We don't have the money to go to San Antonio this year like we had wanted, but we'll be going to San Diego and staying at my parents house while they are in Coronado. I plan on cooking a lot at their house and just taking it easy...maybe a couple trips downtown and definitely some time at Balboa Park and the museums.
We put up our little tree last night and have decided it's our 'Charlie Brown' tree. We think it's cute. I'll take a picture of it tonight and post it tomorrow.
Speaking of posting, I'll be posting more - I promise. Maybe not everyday of the week, but at least a few times a week. I hope you all are doing well and enjoying the season.
* My wonderful (smarty pants) husband just informed that they're not really iMacs, but Macbook Pros. I was cutting corners in their descriptions and wanted to spare myself the typing of a few extra letters, but he called me on it. Thanks, honey. Whatevs.