WARNING- TMI here, you might want to skip this one.

So I was doing some internet browsing on the topic of fertility and found out something interesting. (Mom- if you’re reading this, you might want to stop and go watch this cute video of kittens instead.) Apparently lubricant, even if it’s not spermicidal (boy that rhymes with suicidal. Hm.) can kill sperm.

So the websites I found suggested many alternatives. The top of the list was Pre-Seed. Pre-Seed costs TWENTY FOUR DOLLARS at your local drug store. At my local drug store, it is the only sperm-safe-option, with no generic substitution. Good Lord. So I coughed up the cash. I also bought 2 bottles of prenatal vitamins (BOGO, whattup!), coffee creamer and a bottle of wine. You can imagine how proud I was to set my incriminating basket down on the counter. I could read the cashier’s thoughts: “This poor, poor woman with an unfortunate hair style.”

I got home and explained my purchase to Gabe. I opened the box and guess what. It comes with applicators- a ton of them. I showed them to Gabe and said, “This is what they put in yeast infection treatments. Why does lube need an applicator?” He said, “It’s probably for people who don’t really want to touch each other.” Okay. Makes sense to me, I guess.  I mentioned that this pre-seed was probably like vagina fertilizer, and could maybe even manufactured by Monsanto. He looked at the “ingredients” and noted that he couldn’t pronounce any of the words on the box, and said that it probably wasn’t any better for sperm than the other chemically  created lube we’re accustomed to having on-hand.

BUT- it’s “Created by Sperm Physiologists!” Is that an undergraduate degree? I can see it now, coming home from college your junior year of college, over Christmas dinner someone asks your major. You answer, “Well I’ve decided to major in Sperm Physiology.” Brother says, “SURE YOU ARE.” Other brother says, “So that’s what you’re calling it.”

Since Gabe appeared to be put off by the chemical nature of the $24 tube of “the most-fun baby-making” lube money can buy, I mentioned that one of the websites I found suggested using egg whites as an alternative to lubrication, but there is a concern about allergic reactions.

Gabe said, “That’s (expletive) disgusting! What are you going to do, bake a cake?! Damn hippies I’ll bet they eat the placenta too, that’s sick.” It looked like he was going to gag, but I had to mention that too much friction could perhaps create a merengue of sorts….

So we’re watching a movie right now. I think my purchase and the discussion about it all might have killed the baby making mood for tonight. But I did laugh hard enough to make my stomach hurt.

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I’m trying to get better at the internets

I feel incredibly limited (by skill, but also time and tools) in the creativity realm and the internet. (I’m constantly wishing I had more time to really edit and play with images online, etc.)  I love playing with images and making things…and I wish I could transfer my Cheerleader Bubble Letter Writing Skills to the technology world. I took an HTML class years ago and have created some very very beginner type websites- but as you can see here, I don’t have time to make this one look pretty. Maybe I do have time. Maybe I’m just tired and old.

Anyhow, one night I started screwing around with Picasa and made a slideshow for Gabe.  He liked it, but was embarrassed by it, so don’t tell him I posted it on the internet.

THERE IS A TYPO IN IT.

I KNOW THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN KNEW and NEW. I JUST….sigh whatever. I’m not fixing it.

Happy Valentine’s Day!

This morning we celebrated by handing out handmade Valentine’s to each other, promising each other things-to-come (a night out at a concert for Gabe and a “fancy homemade dinner” for me) and Simon got a pink monkey sippy cup and pink giraffe fork and spoon set (thank you Target). He watched Pocoyo two times this morning and then we rushed around in usual fashion.

Simon refused to wear red on the only day you’re really supposed to (like I care).  He did have a blueberry muffin with cream cheese frosting and sprinkles on it for breakfast, mostly because I don’t mind hyping him up on sugar if someone else is going to watch him go through the sugar high then crash afterwards.

I hope all of your valentine’s wishes come true.

OR

I hope you manage to get through this day without cussing (more likely? maybe not. Did you give up cussing for Lent? I’m so glad I”m not Catholic sometimes.)

Ok, two more days of work— wheeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee!

Then and now.

I remember being a little girl and drawing the dresses I wanted to wear at my wedding. They all had poofy sleeves. The bridesmaids’ dresses were teal, and they had slightly less poofy sleeves. I thought about how beautiful I would feel, and how that day I would look like a princess, and it would be a lovely party- dancing with my Prince Charming.

I had other visions of my life back then. Of course, they were loosely based off of the only life I knew close enough to want- my mom’s life. I would meet my husband in college. I would marry him, because he would be so madly in love with me he would throw himself at my feet and work very hard to provide me with only the nicest of things. Of course, I would stay home and take care of the kids. And I would play tennis. The college degree I received as a result of half-assed studying and learning how to balance binge-drinking and schoolwork would just be a means to an end. College would be where I would meet the “husband”. Husband would fix it all and life would look eerily similar to my parents’ life: 3-4 children birthed in my early/mid twenties. And then there would be a Happily Ever After.

Today I was thinking about this while on a break at work. I was thinking initially about the drawings I made of the dresses, because I was thinking: “Boy, I hope people aren’t disappointed in the way that I look at my wedding.”

First of all, that’s a weird (and obviously deeply self-conscious) thing to think, I know. Very quickly I thought to myself, “Who cares what other people think? And, I’m doing the best that I can throwing this thing together, don’t stress about how you’re going to LOOK. Just FEEL good about it.”

And I just thought about that, too. I mean, when I was a little girl, I didn’t focus on the way I would FEEL about getting married. When I did think about it, I thought about it like I would be “saved” by this person who would take care of me. I never thought of taking care of him, or entering into a mutually beneficial partnership. It’s funny how things change, is all.

Of course, everyone changes between the ages of 8 and 33. And I guess what I’m trying to say is, I’m so pleasantly surprised by the way my life is working out. I can’t picture myself ever NOT working outside the home. I just can’t picture it, not out of necessity- but because I’m passionate about the career I chose. And I dated plenty of people before meeting Gabe (wow those blog archives are lost for good- thankfully). The ones who had the capability to BE the type of Prince Charming I dreamt of as a girl, well frankly they sucked. And to be honest, I ended up being the type of person who always wanted to fix someone else, not be rescued myself. So that kind of worked itself out, too.

Since being with Gabe, I’ve learned more about myself, and the type of relationship that is best and easiest for me. It involves a lot of mutual respect for time, privacy, togetherness and touch. Remembering to stop and kiss him goodbye and hello. Reaching out under the covers to tap him goodnight before I pass out in front of the glow of my laptop and some random Hulu garbage. Coming home to a clean kitchen, a clean child, a child who has learned several new things from the man I’m choosing to marry.

We decided to have this baby (Simon) and give it a shot. We agreed to commit to the kid, and to each other (at the very least) for him. Having only been in a relationship for a year when finding out we were pregnant- it was definitely a roll of the dice. We rolled. I think we won.

This month we’re getting married. And sure I get a teensy bit stressed over the details that need ironed out beforehand. But moreso than stress, I’m feeling like everything is falling into place the way it was always supposed to- in the way that it was meant to be. Sometimes I tell other people that they should have a kid before getting married. I’m only halfway joking. I’m well aware of the potential negative repercussions if parents don’t see eye to eye. But when you both commit to a common goal, something, someONE that you both love more than anything else, well it just prioritizes everything for you. The focus is no longer on you and your relationship. It’s on the family. It’s on your new “team”.

So that’s been my experience so far. And the other night we were talking about how being married is going to be exactly like we’ve already been- only we might have some more kitchen appliances. I know that we’re making a lot of other people happy by making it all “legit”. After all 87 people “liked” my “I’m getting married this month” status on facebook. But for me, I’m just happy that this wedding we’re having is more about the marriage than the party. It’s more about the gathering of family and friends to celebrate than it is looking beautiful and perfect in poofy sleeves.

The foundation of our relationship will remain the same, unchanged. Other people will view us differently, and Gabe is slightly resentful of that. He’s always been committed to me and to us, regardless of the status of our relationship according to the law. So I guess what I mean to say is, this isn’t at all what I pictured when I was 8 years old laying on my stomach drawing pictures of myself in wedding dresses. But there is no way that my 8 year old self could comprehend how much better the future would be.

25 more days.

 

another milestone

Our first time in a restaurant highchair! We walked to breakfast this morning with a new stroller (an aluminum folding umbrella stroller- sweet!) and Simon sat in the highchair and was really good.

1st time in highchair at a restaurant

You probably can’t see it, but he’s growing hair! It’s peach fuzz and actually almost the color peach too. Gabe spontaneously took the day off today to coincide with my comp day for Sunday and we’re expecting sunshine- so I hope we can get out on another walk this afternoon.

I was just informed that the “servers are down” on World of Warcraft, so Gabe’s Spontaneous Day Off might leave him a bit bored…ha!

Whatever will he do without his game???

Gabe

So Gabe always says I “bad mouth him on the internet” which I don’t believe it entirely true. I say nice things about him now and again on here, right? Anyways, to back track a bit:

A few weeks ago our landlords approached us and told us they were selling our building, and offered it to us at a great price. This “great price” was competitive within the area, wouldn’t involve realtor fees for them, but would require us to become landlords and rent out the other side of the building, which I might mention, has sat empty for 3 months even though it’s slightly nicer than ours’. We seriously considered it. We thought maybe we’d move into the other side and rent out this side. We did mortgage calculators and found out if we could borrow money for a down payment. (Like we have thousands of dollars sitting around!? Pheesh.) We told them we were definitely interested, but would more than likely use an FHA loan. They didn’t want to work with an FHA loan. So that was that, it was over.

Then a few days later they called back and said they’d talked to some people in the business and found out that FHA loans weren’t nearly the PITA they used to be, so they were open to it if we were still interested. At this point we’d kinda gotten used to the fact that the place wasn’t meant to be ours’, so we politely declined after getting everything together to get pre-approved. Yea, it was bittersweet.

The next day a sign was out in the front yard accompanying the FOR RENT sign, only this one said For Sale. People came in and out of the building (on the other side) for a few days and now they think they have a potential buyer who supposedly would like us to stay here and be tenants. He will be moving into the other side of the place (hope he likes teething babies!) and today at 4pm an inspector and our potential landlord will be rummaging through our house while we’re at work.

What does this mean?

Well it makes me uncomfortable because we’re not going to be here. It also meant that we had some cleaning to do since they’d likely be moving furniture to reveal electrical outlets and furnace grates. With wood floors we have three times the dust that carpeted places have so it meant a total overhaul of the floors, reorganization (God how I hate this) of the basement, and overall cleaning up everywhere.

Guess who did 90% of the work + about 4 loads of laundry in preparation for this inspection?

Gabe.

He went around the house and did the kind of sweeping/dusting/organizing that I would love to do, if I weren’t constantly distracted by this baby of ours’. (haha) He did an amazing job, and I can open the blinds, let the sunshine in, and be only moderately dismayed by the dust that’s RE-settled on everything. (There’s only so much dusting a person can do in a house as old as ours’. For the most part it never is completely dust-free.)

Gabe can rock. Most of the time he does. If I ever “bad mouth” him on here it’s always in jest, for fun. But honestly, I’m starting to think I should schedule an Inspector to come into our house once every month or so, so Gabe can show off his miraculous cleaning capabilities more often. Don’t get me wrong, he helps me out tremendously and I’m always thankful for how much work he does. He does a lot more than most husbands/boyfriends/roommates do. I recognize and appreciate that. However, this last cleaning spree has exceeded my expectations of him. I probably owe him something sweet now, huh.

my guy

Holy $hit it’s October.

Which means a lot of things:

I have a two month old. TWO MONTHS have gone by since I had this baby?! It’s so weird what babies do to time. They generally are an enormous timesuck- I swear I just woke up and all of the sudden it’s noon and whoa I’m still in pajamas and yes I’ve done about a million things already and all while the baby peacefully sleeps in his swing…the damned swing of neglect.

I go back to work soon- assuming I have settled on childcare– which I haven’t really. I’m waiting to hear back from a family friend about Wed. and Thurs. I am almost certain we have someone for Tuesdays and Fridays. I still have no idea how this whole- getting out of the house/ready for work/to the sitter/to work on time is ever going to work out. And I have approximately 12 days to figure it out. 12 days seemed like an eternity when I was pregnant. I know it will fly by now though- because the last 8 weeks have definitely flown.

Which by the way- with October in Ohio means winterish weather which BLOWS- for a number of reasons- I’m cold (number one reason). Also almost every outfit we own for the baby is a summer outfit. We do have lots of hand me downs from Aunt Gretchen but ….oh wait- they live in SOUTH CAROLINA. Don’t really have a lot of fleecy winter-y outfits in those boxes. So I’ve been using a lot of blankets to bundle him up when we go outside…and somedays he just wears pajamas all day. Better do it while you can, kiddo.

We had the appointment with the Endocrinologist at Children’s hospital yesterday. Let me tell you, I would like to purchase a plastic bubble in which to roll ourselves in and out of that place. I mean. you think daycares are bad- I can’t even fathom the germs floating around that hospital. My hands are cracking from how many times I washed them and used hand sanitizer yesterday.. in the 2.5 hours we were there. Simon was an awesome baby in the hospital (as always). He only cries when we leave the doctor it seems. With the exception of a half hour, he was awake and lovely the entire time- smiling and staring at the room. I think it’s because he loves being naked and I just kept him that way after they weighed him.

My little turkey weighs 12 pounds 10 ounces and is 23 inches long. Almost 13 pounds?! That explains the dull pain in the back of my neck.

The endocrinologist doesn’t think there is anything to be worried about and actually wants to do ONE MORE BLOOD DRAW (dammit) and check for antibodies. Because if there are antibodies attacking his thyroid, they’re likely from me and we don’t have anything to worry about except perhaps about my thyroid..which we’ll figure out after we get him all squared away. I’m waiting to get his blood drawn for when Gabe can go with me- because last time I almost passed out. I do not like them poking around in my baby’s arm for a vein, sorry folks it’s enough to make me throw up and pass out all at once. Simon has yet to really act like it bothers him when they take his blood. He has another thing coming next time we go to the doctor though- because we have the vaccinations…Yuck. Not looking forward to this business. And since when did kids get a chicken pox vaccine? There are so many vaccines now it just seems like a lot for a tiny baby to have to handle. Why don’t they wait longer before they give them? And seriously- chicken pox? I mean that won’t kill you. I don’t think autism is caused by vaccines but I do wonder about slamming a kid with all of these things at once when he’s only been around for 8-10 weeks. I mean, I felt guilty if I took a tylenol while pregnant and now we’re loading him up with deadened viruses and just cross your fingers he doesn’t have some sort of reaction to it?! Nuts. I just wish we could wait longer before he had to deal with it. So he could TELL me if he thinks he’s coming down with a mild case of Measles. Instead I’ll just watch him really closely and “only call if he cries for more than THREE HOURS STRAIGHT”?? Are you serious people!? That’s what the paperwork says!

Anyways that’s the next appointment. Likely Simon’s thyroid is fine and the dr thought he looked really healthy and good. I had to agree.  See here:

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And now my monthly letter to the boy:

Dear Simon (AKA Stink, Lil’ Sleeper, My Turkey, Sy)

You’re 8 weeks old now. 8 Weeks! Two months! Time has flown by but at the same time I feel like you’ve always been here. It’s a strange and surreal feeling. Happy birthday little buddy.

You are getting to be so much more fun now that you’re waking up a bit. I mean, really kid you get more adorable every day and I’m constantly amazed by your cuteness.

In the past month. we’ve eliminated one night time feeding. which means I only (usually) have to get up at 5am now. I am planning to eventually squeeze a workout in at this time but so far I haven’t been able to do anything but feed you and rock you, then put you back to bed. Of course, we’ve slightly increased the amount of milk you’re eating with each meal so now at night when you eat you start to doze off at the end of a bottle, and you get all adorable and floppy when I try to burp you afterwards. Then you bury your head into the crook of my elbow and make your little “oh” face after spitting out your Nuk. Then I rock you and whisper things in your ear while you breathe milk breath in my face.

We’ve gotten ourselves into a bad habit though- at around 6am you start to stir and I pick you up and put you in bed with us- on my chest. I know this is a bad idea for a million reasons but waking up with you face to face is just about the most amazing thing ever. Your little eyes light up when you look up at me and I look at you and we yawn and we stretch together and have our morning time- that sadly no one else gets to see because I’m convinced you are at your best in the morning. We sing and dance around the upstairs while I make the beds and get you ready. Your favorite songs are: Bushel and a Peck, The Good Morning Song. BINGO (sung with your name SIMON instead) and We’re On our Way to Grandpa’s Farm.

At night we have made a routine already- Bath, Bottle & Bed- and you still love the bathtub. You really are starting to kick in there and splash around which is hilarious to watch. I cheer you on and try to get you wore out so you pass out cold after the bottle. You seem to really like your sleep though so it’s not been a huge problem yet. You fall asleep easily in your room to the sounds of the rainforest toy in your crib, or the Beatles CD by your bed.

Though last night, I put you in adorable Halloween pjs, rocked you a bit and laid you down to sleep. Then I went downstairs  to watch a movie with your dad. I typically go to bed around 10:30 or 11 and your dad gives you a bottle between 1 and 2am. I usually don’t wake up when that happens, and he brings you into our room. But last night at 1:30am I woke up to hear your ANGRY SCREAM down the hall. I figured your dad had it under control- probably gas or something but you wouldn’t let up after a few minutes so I came down to your room to find you naked, and your dad looked at me and said- “big blow-out.” You were a total mess. Poor thing- it was almost like you knew and were embarrassed. We cleaned you up and calmed you down and you went back to bed by 2am, though you would have much preferred to stay naked I think. You love being naked.  It’s just too cold right now though- if you still like it in the spring and summer we’ll let you be naked again, promise.

In the last month we’ve also watched the beginning of Buckeye Football here and you are the perfect addition to Saturday afternoon football games on television. You have more gear than me and it’s fun to dress you up in new OSU outfits. You’re definitely the cutest little Buckeye I’ve ever seen. Uncle Brett and Aunt Kristen came up to watch the game and you seemed to enjoy their visit. After the game we got to go to a party and they watched you for the evening.  Aunt Kristen read you books and rocked you to sleep in your room.

Gunner, Uncle Brett and Simon
Gunner, Uncle Brett and Simon

Over the past month we’ve dealt with baby acne and you scratching the hell out of your face when you get angry. Your dad and I finally figured out that you needed the baby equivalent of a stress-ball to squeeze with your tiny hands when you get angry. After trying several different things, you have grabbed onto this giraffe from your Aunt Gretchen. and you will not let go. We have several other types of blankie-objects like this but this is the only one you will knead in your hands and hold onto. I’m thinking we may have to invest in a few more of these just in case this one falls apart or gets lost somewhere:

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We’ve had several visits from your grandparents on both sides, and I’m looking forward to a Date-Night with your dad tomorrow night when Nonni and Papa come up again to watch you. I can’t decide where we’re going to go but I’m excited that they enjoy hanging out with you so much. Your other Grandma and Grandpa came up to the football game too and enjoyed visiting for a bit. Grandma and I went shopping one day and took you along and you were so good! The stroller definitely puts you to sleep.

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My maternity leave is coming to a close and we’re having a hell of a time trying to find someone suitable to watch you during the week while we’re at work. Neither of us are thrilled with the prospect of leaving you with anyone but family but we’re trying our hardest to find someone that will love you. Right now your dad comes home from work during lunch to visit you and it’ll be hard for him when he can’t do that because you’re at the sitter’s.

dad home on lunch
dad home on lunch

I’m so proud of you already and you’re only 8 weeks old- I mean let’s be honest, there’s not a whole lot you’ve accomplished as of yet but still- I’m so proud. You’re adorable and easy going for the most part and you’re starting to want to be awake more often and that’s so fun. You’ve just started making new sounds and I’m starting to be able to recognize which ones are whiny cries and which ones are feed-me/change-me/burp-me cries.

I love getting to know you and to me you are the very best baby a person could ask for. Happy 2 month birthday buddy. I love you more than you know.

XO

Mom

Life as a SAHM

I survived Days 1 and 2 of being home without Gabe. We miss Dad. Days were easier and definitely more fun. Gabe’s pretty irritable about having to be at work too. Thankfully he comes home at lunch and gets to see Simon and also helps me for 25 minutes so I can….usually just pump in peace.

The first day, Simon was ohsosweet and wonderful. Today– if he was awake, he was crying. Of course, that’s because his belly appears to hurt ALL THE TIME so I can hardly blame him. Also it seems like he’s slept a lot more today than he did yesterday so I don’t know what the deal is. At some point the boy has to level out and be just a TAD BIT more predictable, no?

Observation: I mentioned during pregnancy that as soon as you get “used to” one way of life/size pants/trimester/batch of pregnancy symptoms– they change. I was looking forward to this ending. Really, it just prepared me for life with the baby…since what he prefers changes ALL THE TIME.

Today was the first day that I took Simon out of the house by myself. I over-fed him (well I fed him enough to make him pass out) before leaving the house because I had my post-partum checkup today. 6 weeks. I hauled the baby in the baby carrier, and the diaper bag, and my ginormous purse. He slept. The. Whole. Time. And I was in there for well over an hour. I was shocked. Though there were some touchy moments when I was certain he was going to blow up while I was naked from the waist down and wrapped in an oversized paper towel, he stayed asleep. I was amazed. Of course he saved the crying for when we got home….then he peed on me. Again.

I have to say that he’s turning into quite the porker. The doctor and nurses said, “Oh he’s big…” and I said, “yup.”

Good news: somehow I weigh only 10 pounds more than I did when I got pregnant. Now, if you look at my body you would think 25. At least. That’s because I now have MomBody. I would look awesome in some MomJeans. (Don’t pass up that link- it is hilarious.) Everything has turned to mush and redistributed itself into strange areas. So even though I’m happy with the numbers…I’m not so sure how to fix this…especially when

WHERE THE HELL DID TIME GO?! I mean I’ve been living life in 2 hour increments with the milking-myself and all but jeesh who would’ve thought that I would keep myself busy just with regular chores in a day without ever leaving the house?!

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And when he’s not screaming he looks uber cute. (Taken yesterday when mood was better..)

Now I must go because he’s starting to make those grunting noises again.

P.S. I heart swings, the mom-rocking substitute.