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Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Preggo Pics

I haven't posted any pics of me lately, so I thought I'd take a few to show you that I am legitimately looking pregnant these days. Right now, I'm at 21 weeks and 3 days, and I swear that it's just been within the last 3 weeks or so that all of a sudden, I looked down and there was a belly! So, here I am from the front:
And then, here I am from the side:
Behind me, in that one above, you'll note a counter full of clothes: Those were some hand-me-downs that a friend from work gave me today, and look at that pile! And I swear that with each thing I unfolded from the box, I went, "Awww, isn' that cute!" Which certainly brings me to the decision that I have to retract my previous statement about not liking pink: I think it's already growing on me. Maybe it's because nearly everything for baby girls is pink, or because everything is just so dang cute, but more than half that pile of clothing is some shade of pink, and I love it all!
However, out of all of Norah's loot so far, I think my favorite onesie of hers at this point is one that Jerry bought the other day:
Isn't that awesome? It just makes me grin when I look at it. Plus, so far, it's the only thing in black (which, let's be honest -- boy or girl, there's not much black clothing for babies), and she has to have something that's kick-ass and not just cute!

Monday, March 30, 2009

It's Healed!

For real this time, I think our computer has been healed!

It returned home today after a week-long excursion to the computer-doctor, and while there in his care, many viruses were surgically removed and everything was restored to its previous viral-free state. So, after nearly a month of dealing with not having a home computer, I now have limitless computer capabilities! Buwwahhaa...yes, that's my evil laugh...the one I do whilst simultaneously steepling my fingers and cracking a menacing grin.

Yes, world domination is now back within my grasp.

Now, I wish I could spend the next few hours surfing the interweb amassing potential minions, but alas, I must change and head out to bowling for the night.

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Sunday Night Babysitting Gig

This evening, Jerry and I are at our friends' house babysitting, which means we invested an actual half hour of "real" babysitting; then, the baby went to bed. Not a bad gig. Plus, it means limitless computer time for Jess! (Yes, our home computer is still on the fritz. Don't ask me about it. I don't want to talk about its continued absence.)

As far as my weekend report? Not much to report. Cleaned the house, spent most of today reading student essays. Rockin', right? I did get a short run in on Friday evening, but otherwise, I have been lazy on the exercise front for the rest of this weekend.

On the preggo front, I felt Norah give me a good, hardy kick this morning that I could feel on the surface for the first time (at 6 am, no less), and I swear this morning she was also doing some kind of amniotic acrobatics. This was pretty exciting. I have been feeling fluttering, indistinct movement for about a month now, but this was the first movement I could feel that felt like a distinct kind of kick (or, perhaps punch?). I waited to see if she'd do it again so I could wake Jerry and have him feel, but as soon as I was waiting for it to happen again, she refused to comply. Typical kid, right?

And as far as I have been feeling? Well, everyday is still different, and today did not fair all that well. I felt nauseous most of the afternoon after I ate lunch, and then we came over here to our friends' house and they kindly fed us dinner before they left, and how did I repay such generosity? I puked up the dinner in their toilet. Some babysitter I am, huh? At this point, (I'm at 21 weeks now), I'm not sure when the nausea will totally dissipate, if it ever does. But for the most part, I'd like to say I've been feeling much better.

Still, my record for being barf-free stands at 9 days. Oh well, only 19 more weeks.

Well, that's all my news for now. Might as well take this computer opportunity to actually catch up with what's new with all of you! Toodles.

Friday, March 27, 2009

Kermit Runner

Awhile ago, I mentioned a few other runners in my neighborhood, one of whom runs backwards down the street; well, last night he was out running while I was out getting my 3 miler in, and it seems he's added a new part to his routine. He now occasionally flails his arms about while he's running backwards.

I would like to say the maneuver mimics a windmill, but that description would make the action seem more choreographed than it appears. It really just looks like he's flailing his arms about.

I would say that perhaps this elderly man is suffering from some sort of disease or unfortunate failure to control his limbs, except that he doesn't do it all the time. When he runs forward, he stops the arm flailing and just runs like normal. It kinda reminded me of that episode of "Friends" when Phoebe and Rachel go running and Rachel discovers that Phoebe runs like "Kermit the Frog." That is a very close comparison to this guy.

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Slow 3

Last night Jerry and I went for a run together: I made him swear, before we went, that he was gonna run with me and not just leave me in the dust. He swore, but his own condition was that he wanted to bring the Garmin along.

The run went fine, and it was nice to have someone to run with, but in the end, I had to learn the truth about our digits: 33:29 for a 3 miler. That's an average, according to Garmin, of 11:08/mile. I figured I was going about that slow as of late, but seeing it in actual, digital numbers kinda made me feel like poo.

Oh well, I'd better roll with it right? Because I'm likely to only get slower as Norah grows bigger!

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Thank You Running

Yesterday was a stressful day: I was really busy with my classes and then I got home and had to make a few unpleasant calls between my insurance and my doctor's office to sort out some billing discrepancies, and after that, I really felt spent. I seriously just wanted to lay on the couch and eat cookies.

Which, to be honest, is what I did. Except I ate the cookies first, then lay down on the couch.

About the last thing in the world I wanted to do was go for a run, but I know from experience that those are the times when I need to run the most. So, I mustered up what little energy I had and decided that I would just do a 2 miler: It wouldn't be much, but at least it would be something.

So, reluctantly, I changed and got out there for my run, and just like always, I found that as I ran, I felt better. I still stuck to completing just the 2 miles, but it was enough to help dissolve the stress of the day and help me feel more energized.

Monday, March 23, 2009

The Healthy Side of It

Since becoming pregnant, I have often been focused on two aspects to this "condition": What I cannot do (or eat or drink) and how I feel. The first one has a somewhat lengthy list: No alcohol, drugs, sushi or trampolines. Which really puts a cramp in my weekend activities of getting wasted, free-basing crack, and jumping on a trampoline while eating raw fish. The second probably has consumed more of my thoughts since I have so often felt nauseous and barf-tastic.

However, in the past few days, I've been thinking about new behaviors and habits that I've been forced to pick up along the course of this pregnancy, and I am thinking that some of these things should be a part of life no matter what:

1. Taking vitamins everyday.
For those who know me, you know that I hate taking vitamins because swallowing them makes me gag, they kinda upset my stomach, and I usually forget about them after a few days of vowing to religiously take them (and they thus become expensive medicine-cabinet decoration). But now that I take a daily prenatal vitamin, as well as an Omega-3 fatty acid pill (good for baby's brain!), I have actually gotten used to them, and now me thinks they're not so bad.

2. Drinking more water.
I've actually always been a pretty good water drinker, but being pregnant requires a woman to really up her intake of water, so lately I have been drinking about 80-100 oz of water a day. Certainly the consequence of this is that I feel like I spend half my day (and night) peeing, but I think all this water is good for me.

3. Eating healthy.
Again, pre-pregnancy, I always thought of myself as a good, balanced eater, but since becoming pregnant, I think I am a better eater. I definitely eat more fruit, veggies, and whole grains. Sure, I also love me some Oreos and Snickers, but I am seriously going through the contents of the crisper faster than usual!

4. Eating smaller quantities. More frequently.
Basically, right now, I am eating something all the time, but it's small amounts throughout the day. This helps keep the nausea at bay, but also, I am frankly hungry ALL THE TIME! But supposedly, this is also a key to long-lasting weight control, which I've known, but knowing and doing are two separate things, right? Now that it's become habitual, I hope it will remain that way.

5. Avoiding drinking.
Usually, I would think of this as an abomination, but I actually think that the hiatus from drinking has several benefits, not just healthy ones: It's cheaper, it ensures that Jerry and I always have a sober-cab, and I have discovered that I still like my friends even when I'm sober (man, they must be keepers, huh?).

6. Running.
In the years that I've been running, I think I began to take running, and the benefits I gain from it, for granted. And I just figured when I got pregnant that my running would remain a constant. I didn't estimate how much harder it would be or how my physical limitations would change, but none of this has diminished my enjoyment of it or how much I need it on a regular basis.

All of these are things I'd like to carry over into my everyday life after the baby is born. Well...I'm not gonna go completely "dry" (pertaining to #5 there), but I think I could manage to drink 2-3 drinks at a party instead of 10 and that would be beneficial. But we'll see. Maybe a new mother needs her crack, booze, and trampolines, right?

Friday, March 20, 2009

Still Got It

Yesterday, a car drove by while I was running and they honked and whistled out the window at me. So, apparently, even though I feel like a lumbering fat ass when I'm running now, I'm still hawt to the passersby!

As a side note to that, Jerry drove by me on his way home and I didn't even notice him. He said he waved at me (but didn't honk because he knows that makes me nuts), but I must've been so focused on huffing and puffing along that I was blind to him.

Enjoy your weekend, everyone! Our computer has gone in to the computer doctor, so hopefully by early next week, it will be returned to us healed and I can resume my normal blogging!

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Rainy Day Run

Yesterday it rained all day long. And it was glorious. We haven't had significant rainfall in months (dry season) and things were looking pretty brown; plus, I just love gray, rainy days. Maybe it's the break in the weather pattern or maybe it just feels cozy to me -- either way, I like it.

So in the evening, in a break between showers, I got out for a 3 miler, and it was the perfect weather out: cooler, still cloudy, with that delicious rain smell scenting the air. It was a nice run, and when I finished, I felt super fantastic.

In general, I still feel pretty good running. I'm way slower, for sure, and I don't get as many miles in a week (I've been averaging 12-15 per week lately), but for the most part I'm happy to get done what I get done. However, I do have to admit that this business of running while pregnant is harder than I thought it would be.

For one thing, I have now gained approximately 8 lbs, which is pretty average at this point, and while that's not much weight, on my frame, I can really feel the difference of carrying around those extra pounds while running. Especially since that weight is all out front in my belly and boobs.

Additionally though, running just wears me out more than it ever did before. It is probably because of my slightly elevated heart rate and increased lung capacity (which you would think would make running easier but I actually find myself somewhat short of breath); in many ways, just being pregnant is like exercise for your body, so adding regular exercise to the day can really wear a girl out. I finish my 3 milers and I feel as though I just ran 10.

Despite these aspects that make it harder, I still plan to continue with it for as long as possible simply because I believe that the benefits far outweigh the difficulties. But if I can feel the difference of lugging along 8 lbs now, I can ony imagine how things will be in a few months when I'm lugging far more weight!

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

The Day After

I don't know what exactly was wrong with me yesterday -- whether it was a stomach virus, extremely bad morning sickness, or a foodbourne illness -- but for about half the day I couldn't keep anything down. Later in the day, I improved and felt better, but I never felt entirely good yesterday.

So I mostly slept all day, and then went to bed early last night, and I feel better today. I still don't feel great, but I feel much better than yesterday and I am at work.

For some reason, even when I know I have good reason to be at home sick, I still feel guilty for calling in sick and cancelling my classes. Plus, it makes for more work since I have to re-arrange class material to make up for the missed day, so I have a lot to do today to catch up.

**Update: Interestingly, I got about 4 emails from sick students yesterday who were emailing me to let me know they were ill and couldn't come to class, and I found out that two fellow faculty members were also out ill yesterday, so maybe it was some kind of bug afterall.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Sick day

I woke up this morning feeling awful, and before 7:30, I had puked twice. Still, I got ready for work and headed out.

On my way, I continued to feel icky so I told myself that if I had to stop on the way to work and puke, then I'd call in sick.

I made it about halfway there before I pulled over and hurled. So I called in and cancelled my classes.

I came home and slept for a bit but I still don't feel very good. I think this is more than morning sickness; either I ate something yesterday that's not sitting well today, or I have the flu. Ugh.

Monday, March 16, 2009

Baby Stuff

Well, I feel lame for again excusing my absence from the interweb because of my dumbass home computer, but that has been the reason I have been absent for the past few days. Our home computer is just not co-operating (we thought it was coming around, but I guess that was just trickery), so I don't know: We'll have to take it in to be serviced or we'll have to throw it in the dumpster. I'm leaning toward option #2.

So, what's new in the Jess world? More baby stuff, but of course!

Jerry and I spent a somewhat exhausting weekend researching, browsing, and then ultimately registering for some baby stuff for Baby Norah. First of all, we decided on a nursery motif: The below featured bedding with ladybugs and dragonflies is gonna be the "centerpiece" of the room's design. Yes, it has pink (it's not that I'm not anti-pink, per se -- in fact, there's a lot of pink I do love, but I just didn't want a solid pink theme), but I like that it also has some greens, some red, and some cream. We'll probably paint the room a cream color, just because we'd like the walls to be neutral, but we can incorporate the other colors in other ways in the room. Plus, both Jerry and I liked the above design: It's feminine but not overly so, which was the vague concept we went about searching for.

Additionally, we decided on a furniture line: Except that what's featured here in the picture isn't the stain we're getting. We are getting what's called an "espresso" stain -- so it's a much darker, almost black, wood.
But that's the crib and dressers.

We didn't actually purchase anything yet (still waiting for some parental-assistance with some of it), but we got registered at a new baby store near us called Buy Buy Baby.

So that pretty much took up our weekend. We did fit in a great party with friends on Saturday night in which we had a shrimp boil, fireworks, and shenanigans, but other than that, I don't have much else to report. I haven't run since Friday, and today is a rest day for me because tonight is bowling.

Now, I have an hour of office time left today, so I think I will waste that (I mean "use that") time to catch up with some of you homies! So, toodles!

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Baby Girl's Details

First of all, thanks for all the congrats and good wishes about our announcement yesterday; I truly appreciate everyone's enthusiasm! It's so much fun to share all of this exciting stuff with you guys.

And yesterday truly was an exciting day. For a couple of reasons:

For one, it was fun to get to find out that the baby will be a girl (they can see the hoo-ha and everything with ultrasounds these days, so yes, we're certain it's a girl). We would have been thrilled with either sex, and we honestly had no preferences, nor did either of us have an inklings or intuition one way or another, but finding out the baby's sex just makes her seem so real now! I mean, she was real before, but now that I can picture a baby girl, she seems more real than ever before, and that is just exciting in a way that's almost indescribable. I can't wait to meet her and see what she's like!

For another reason, it was wonderful just to see her on the ultrasound! This was our first one, so it was our first looksie at her, and to see the baby in there was awesome. The ultrasound office has everything displayed in front of you on a wall-mounted HDTV, so we didn't have to scrunch over the tech's shoulder in order to see what she was seeing. It was all there in front of us on a big, clear TV. And it truly is amazing how much detail they can reveal now: We got to see most of her organs: kidneys, liver, heart, brain (all of which are strong, healthy and without defect) and we could see two arms, two legs, little feet, little hands and fingers and toes! So from everything we saw and from everything the tech saw (she was noting things that we had no clue about), the baby's developing right on schedule and is strong and healthy!

So, in many ways, that was even more exciting than discovering her sex. Plus, it was fun to see her kicking and movin around the entire time during the u/s: She's a mover! And no wonder I have to pee all the time -- she was kicking my bladder the whole time!

On to answering a few of your FAQs:

1. Yes, we already know what we'll name her. We had already discussed names at great length, and had determined both a boy and a girl name. We're gonna name her Norah. We both have always liked the name, so since yesterday afternoon, we've already switched from calling her LBB to calling her Baby Norah.

2. My last name will be her middle name. (And yes, I know my full name was displayed on the pic on yesterday's post. If you're gonna go ahead and stalk me, that's fine.) And she'll have Jerry's last name as her last name.

3. No, I have no idea how we'll decorate the nursery, but no, it won't include a pink explosion. I'm not really that fond of pink, personally, and I'm also not too much of a girly-girl, so while I'm sure her nursery and clothes will all be distinctly feminine, I'm not sure what decorating direction we'll go in.

Okay, that's enough baby talk for now. I have been running this week. Still sticking to my 3 milers and they're still going well. But I think I may bring the Garmin along for this evening's run because I am curious to see just how slow I'm going; I swear, these 3 milers feel good but they feel like they take me forever!

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

It's a Girl!

Today's the Day

That we find out the baby's sex!

It's pretty exciting, and hopefully, the baby co-operates so the doctor can tell. I've been feeling the baby as of late, which is cool in and of itself, but I'm still eager to get a peek at the little bugger and see what it is (plus, it would be nice to not have to refer to it as an "it," but by a gender-specific pronoun).

So, whatcha wager LBB is? Any guesses before I reveal it to you later?

Monday, March 09, 2009

Back from Break

After 10 days off for spring break, I am now back to work. Blah. But, my break was truly relaxing and enjoyable, and since I didn't have much computer access during break, I'll fill you in on my ever-exciting activities:
  • I ran consistently. I am now really relying on my 3 milers as the backbone of my running schedule. They're long enough that I feel like I get a good workout, but short enough that I don't feel overly-exhausted by them. Plus, they leave me enough time for the bathroom before and after. (A pregnant woman is never far from a bathroom, I've learned that!)
  • I have been leaving the Garmin at home while I run lately. I know I'm getting slower and it was frustrating me to watch the digits decline, and because I want to just focus on getting the runs done and feeling good while doing them, I decided that the best idea was to leave the gadget at home. It has been weird to run without it, but I think I have to put my ego in the backseat for this running-while-pregnant business, and to do so, I have to let go of focusing on how slow I'm currently running.
  • I also did a couple of sessions of my new prenatal yoga video. I like it, even though some of it strikes me a comically corny. I think it's good to incorporate some flexibility and breathing exercises into my routine.
  • I got to sleep. A LOT! I slept in everyday, and I took naps almost daily. All the extra rest was glorious, and I felt so good! In general, I'm feeling pretty good these days. I've only thrown up once in the past two weeks, and that may be attributed to the fact that I consumed expired milk with my cereal that day. Oopsie.
  • I also got to take long walks with Scooter and play with him more. I love my little Copper Top dog.
  • I also got to do a lot of reading! One of my favorite pleasures in the whole world. I read "Still Alice" by Lisa Genova, and I thought it was excellent. It's a novel about a Harvard professor who's diagnosed with early onset Alzheimer's. I thought it depicted Alzheimer's from the patient's point of view with sincerity and insight, and the story itself was incredibly moving. I also read most of Curtis Sittenfeld's "American Wife" ( I still have about 80 pages of this one to finish), and even though I'm not finished, I think this is truly a masterpiece. I'd originally read reviews of this when it was published about a year ago, but I never picked it up while it was in hard copy. For those not familiar with it, it's a fictional account of Laura Bush's life, and it's incredibly engrossing. Sittenfeld manages to create characters that, even though they are based on real life people, are uniquely their own, and while the events too are shaped around real life, again, Sittenfeld, re-imagines them with depth and poignancy. (Listen to me, do you think I wish I were a book critic for the Times? Because, um, yeah, I wish I were.) Seriously, go read this one. It's brilliant.
  • I also diligently read some student papers and got some chores done around the house, but all in all, it was a great break for spending some "Jess-time."

But, today it is back to the grind, which is okay, because I take comfort in certain routines and I like returning to my classes. Plus, we only have 8 weeks of the semester left. Then, I'm just teaching one summer class, so my summer should be pretty relaxed as we prepare for the baby.

I'm still working to catch up with everyone's blogs, so I hope to read what everyone else has been up to as of late!

Sunday, March 08, 2009

It's Alive!

After a week of maintenance, the computer seems to be working again. Somewhat. So, let me quick post.

Here's Jerry posng this morning in front of the new range and microwave. And here's the new fridge and dishwasher.

They look great, right?

Here I am in my this-is-what-look-like-18-weeks-preggo. Still not much of a gut going yet, but it's starting to stick out. We go to the doctor on Wednesday for the ultrasound to see if it's a boy or girl!

Here I am from the side. Today, we went to the Renaissaince Festival, and it was a great day to walk around, eat giant pickles, watch acrobats and jousters, and throw Chinese throwing stars.
And, I threw knives, and shot this cross bow, and I threw tomatoes at a guy, but I'm sorry to say that I missed. It was all good fun though. Hey, if I can't drink at RenFest, I gotta throw shit!
Okay, so this looks as though the computer is gonna remain alive long enough for me to post this, but I'd best not push my luck any further. I'll catch up more tomorrow when I return to my work computer. Lator, yo!

Wednesday, March 04, 2009

Perfect Day

Today I have been enjoying some of my favorite things: Books, coffee, sitting on the porch, and soon I'm gonna go run (did 3 miles yesterday and I plan another 3 miler this afternoon). Computer is still on the fritz, and yes, we bought all new kitchen appliances yesterday, but I will fill you in on that later...I don't want my coffee to get cold :)

Tuesday, March 03, 2009

Computer Still Dead

Yup, the computer is bogged down with viruses and while we've been trying our best to cure it, we may have to surrender to calling in back up. We'll see. For now, it's a pain because I'm at home this week so I don't even have access to my work computer. I can do some web stuff from my phone, but not everything, so pardon my absence from your blogs.

So, in other news, I got a prenatal yoga DVD that I did for the first time yesterday, and I liked it. The workout was challenging enough to leave me a bit sore today (especially in my butt!), but not so tough that I couldn't keep up. I think I'll try incorporating it a few days a week when I'm not running.

Today, I am gonna run. It's nice and cool out so I should have pleasant weather for it.

Then I have to meet Jerry at Home Depot because I think we're gonna buy all new kitchen appliances. See, our microwave died about 3 weeks ago (it was 10 years old), and our dishwasher is making a funny smell when it runs (and it was a hand me down from friends who had it for awhile before us), and our stove has one burner that doesn't work. Amazing we didn't trade up earlier, right?

Well, we've been reluctant to spend the money, even though we have it, because of the forthcoming baby expenses. But, I think it may be wise to just go ahead and get them, and the baby will just have to sleep in an empty dresser drawer :)

Okay, this has been a lot to type on my phone, so I'm off! Cross your fingers the computer heals itself soon. I don't want to buy a new one of those too!

Sunday, March 01, 2009

Dead computer

I think our computer has some kind of virus, maybe the flu, I don't know, so I'm typing this from my phone.

Anyhoo, yesterday as I was running my 3 miler, I was approached by 2 Jehovah's Witnesses on bikes, and they tried to give me a pamphlet and talk to me.

While I was running!

I politely told them "No, thanks." But that's the weirdest experience I've ever had with people who are trying to sell religion. Maybe "sell" isn't the right word, but you know what I mean, right?