30 April 2011

Mirror, mirror on the wall

Who truly was the fairest of them all? 

I promise to keep my royal wedding hysteria to this one post & never to utter another word about how it bewitched me, made me cry (pregnancy hormones alert) or made my cynical heart grow two sizes. 
Whatever, even non-romantic girls are allowed to love a good wedding from time to time.
This one did not disappoint. Sure, I was underwhelmed about the use of those trees that we saw being hauled in. They looked lovely, don't get me wrong, but they had my imagination running wild. I guess it's not really possible to have dim lighting & twinkle lights & hanging lanterns in Westminster Abbey - I can't even imagine how many light & lanterns that would take. And dim lighting would be a disaster with all those rogue fancy hats darting about as well. Yikes.

Anyway, on to the nitty gritty folks. Who knocked your socks off in this beautiful bunch of British charmers? 

Okay, these may be the obvious choices. 
She nailed it with the dress choice.
He brought that little girl fantasy of Prince Charming to life.

But was the new Duchess of Cambridge upstaged by her sister Pippa?
Marcel gave his stamp of approval on her church cleavage.
She handle those kids with grace & poise.
I am mad for a dress with a cowl neck.

The the girl went & blew it out of the park with her reception dress.
This is my kind of fairy tale dress - love that green!
I do hope she ate her heart out at the reception along with Kate.
I can't imagine the pressure of wanting to look nice for billions of people so I'm not saying they got too skinny by any means - they looked fantastic. But yeah, I hope they ate one of everything in that place.

Probably fair to say these royal hot messes didn't make anyone's best dressed list.
I think they were protesting the royal shunning of the Ferg-meister.
If I had an appropriate hat, I would join them.
But I will never own a hat like either of those.

Oh Harry, who knew you'd be the better looking one?
Was I the only one wondering about his ginormous shoulders?
If the sight of this man in a carriage of little flower girls didn't warm your heart, you are a robot.

Good heavens, almighty.
Posh looked mighty nice but look at dapper David Beckham!
Ding, ding, ding, ding!
We have a winner. 

He wins because I'm too lazy to look for any more pictures & I've forgotten where these have come from - most from gofugyourself.com, maybe one from people.com & eonline.com. That should cover that.

Who did I forget? Did you even care? 
I've got to go wake up my napping son & husband so we can get on with our afternoon.
Hope you enjoyed the royal festivities & if not, I will not knock you over the head with them again.
But come on, isn't it gorgeous to see young people in love??? 

28 April 2011

take two

Okay, I tried to do a post earlier & the formatting was ALL over the place - I had pasted something into the blog & that always throws everything off for some odd reason so I just deleted it. These new-fangled computers are witchy little creatures aren't they?

So little Fonzarelli is getting active, squirming & somersaulting like the wild child I know he is. It's not the "real" kicking that you can feel from the outside, just feels like my belly is squirrelly from time to time. I forgot how much it feels like an alien is in there when the kid has started movin' & a'groovin'. I'm eager for him to be big & strong enough so that Marcel can feel him bumping around too but I guess I've got to be patient. I'm just 17 weeks now & he is the size of an onion now apparently - only a million gazillion weeks left!

I'm getting quite eager for the royal wedding tomorrow, I'm not ashamed to admit. Seeing all those trees moved into Westminster Abbey brought a very big smile to my face - I think we've got a lively one with young Kate & I can't wait to see how beautiful & over the top this sucker's gonna be! Also eager to see how she went with her dress - she's worked in fashion so will she push the envelope or stick to safe & traditional?

I shall be celebrating with newly cut, coloured & styled hair - yes, I shall be fresh from the salon but I will have moved into my pj's so I can celebrate just the way Queenie WISHES she could. I wonder what the Queen's jammies are like? Anyway, because the wedding is on at a reasonable hour here I'll get Ben to bed & then Marcel & I will be whoopin' it up with the Windsors & Middletons. Does Marcel know this? No & it's best not to warn him lest he fake an injury to get out of it. I think we'll keep it simple with tea & crumpets, which seems plenty British to me without me having to do any work. Maybe baked beans & toast? Such sophisticated choices.

I've been suffering a bit of heartburn the past couple of days. Figures that I would finally lose the constant nausea then get lovely heartburn instead but it's pretty minor thus far so fingers crossed that it doesn't get worse anytime soon. Last pregnancy I had it pretty severely but that wasn't until I was much further along. That doesn't mean anything, though, I guess. Anyway, this is boring.

Oh yeah, let me tell you what terrible headline I saw today. Nothing much just an 18 month old soccer player that has already been signed by a professional team because he shows so much promise! You fools told me that Ben & I were Li'l Kickers drop-outs because kids that young weren't meant to play soccer & I couldn't expect that much from him so young. Thanks doofuses, I could have had a little Beckham on my hands. Oh my, I wouldn't mind having a little Beckham on my hands. See what I did there??? I'll blame my hormones.

Alright, I'm outy. Enjoy your Royal Wedding Eve ... unless you aren't the kind to enjoy such revelry then you go back to your troll's den & be a grouch, why don't you.

27 April 2011

Why can't I come up with any witty titles these days?

Another rainy day, people. What are we to do? In the few minutes of clear sky we had some fun in the backyard, Ben sliding on a soaking wet slide & wearing his too-small gum boots. Adding new awesome boots to his list of 2nd birthday presents!

Got a great phone call a little while ago - the final results from our amniocentesis came in & all is officially well!! Very excited & relieved to hear that. There was a teeny tiny chance of something being wrong even after that first set of results & at the rate we have been going, we were more than a teeny tiny bit nervous. High five to being clear of those chromosomal issues.

In other wonderfully exciting good news, I am getting my hair done on Friday! Yes, I just had a haircut a couple of weeks ago but I don't count it because she butchered my layers & only cut half of my bangs - I've been wearing them brushed over so told her to cut them shorter but angle them for leaving them to the side. She didn't do that & she only bothered to cut the one side. WTF? Yes, I know I should have gone back & demanded a redo but I am too stubborn to return to someone who has made a mistake (& in 2011 the Rachel is a mistake!) with my hair. Allure, here I come! And yes, I'm going for the Ophelia:

I am aware that getting a hair cut is not going to give me long luscious bouncy locks but I can at least get my shape ready, my bangs done properly & finally get the red hair I've been thinking about for months. I'm very excited & shall obviously post "after" pictures when I'm done. Anything is better than my current "before." Nevermind. Do you ever open Photo Booth to take a quick picture of yourself when you think it will be pretty or in this case, funny then when Photo Booth pops up you look like a fat troll that has stumbled into some terrible lighting under its bridge. Holy moly, where did that 3rd chin come from? And where did my makeup go? It's a sure way to destroy what's left of my self-esteem that's for sure!

Man oh man, I have been cleaning on & off all day but you would never be able to tell. I'm not sure what black hole I've wandered into that causes me to clean, scrub & straighten then have nothing to show for it at the end of the day. I've decided that today is cleaning surfaces, washing dishes & a couple of loads of laundry, then tomorrow is sweeping, mopping, vacuuming & the rest of the laundry. Are you still awake? I'm very sorry but I have nothing else going on in my life at the moment. Should I start making up stories about the wild parties I'm going to at night (after getting Ben off to sleep, of course) with Mick Jagger & Elton John? HOW OLD AM I? Could I choose some contemporary celebrities??? Do people even use the word "contemporary" anymore? I'll be sure to ask the Kardashians & Robert Pattinson & those crazy kids from the Jersey Shore at my next wild shindig. Dang, they don't say "shindig" either do they?

Anyway, now that I've messed up my kick-ass reputation I'm off to dry my sheets. Beat that, jerks.

25 April 2011

Rain, rain go away

Shit just got real, ya'll. This pregnancy has gotten organized. I bought a "compendium" to keep all my test requests, results, scan images, lists of questions & random research all straight. Compendium, huh? Who knew that was a word? Not I. Basically, it's a boring Trapper Keeper for adults - no Lisa Frank available, no dancing horses, no boy bands. My overactive 14 year-old inner self is itching to cover it in stickers or write cute boys names all over it but I fear none of the medical professionals would take me seriously if I waltzed in with an eyesore like that. I am incredibly proud of how organized everything is in there & can't wait to zzzzip that satisfying velcro at my next appointment. Woo-doggy, people are going to take notice of my awesome organizational skills let me tell you.

I can't remember when my last update was for you so I'll give you the rundown of my last midwife appointment. They brought a consulting OB doctor in with the midwife who informed me that the part of my blood result that was "bad" (the PAPP-A) can also cause low birth weight so they will be keeping a very close eye on the baby & he's got me taking blood tests once a week for the next few weeks to make sure no infection has crept in after my leaking incident. Lovely. So basically all is still good but people are keeping an eye on me - ugh.

It's a crappy rainy day here & I've had a throbbing headache all day. Ben has been down for a nap for ages & I've let him sleep way over when I usually wake him up because we have nothing to do when he wakes up. It's ANZAC Day so shops are only open a few hours & he has slept through those hours & the rain prevents any outdoor fun. Poor boy is going to be bored as poo when he wakes up, then we'll be up all night with him because he's slept too late this afternoon. I hate days when we watch too much TV but he's a bit too young for arts & crafts & let's face it, my brain probably can't handle it anyway.

I did some experimenting in the kitchen & absolutely butchered some homemade mozzarella cheesesticks with panko crumbs - they kind of exploded but were still fairly tasty. Luckily the chewy chocolate chip cookies I made were perfection so I survived.

Today is also Marcel day so he's had the whole day off with no me or Benny to bother him. He left late this morning & I haven't heard a peep from him all day. I was supposed to do the same yesterday but couldn't make it happen - I was tired & yuck so stayed home with them. I did get a decent nap so that's a high five. Maybe I'll leave the house tomorrow for a while by myself - pedicure? Meandering around Borders (before it closes)? Wild times, my friends. Crap, I'm watching Family Ties for some odd reason & I do believe a teenage Crispin Glover is a guest on it - he wasn't creepy yet back then.

Anyway, I hear Ben whining so I'm going to go rescue him from his little prison. Maybe we'll bust out the finger paints or the Play-Doh. Alls I know is there will be cookies involved.

19 April 2011

The robe & the child.

So, I finally broke down & bought a robe yesterday. I have a little hanger-on that doesn't allow me privacy when I get ready in the morning so I thought I could afford a little modesty so he'd stop poking at my doughy thighs. Robe shopping is painful for me because I have something in my mind that I can't find - I do not want something terry-cloth or particularly puffy because they always end up damp & crap. I just spent a few minutes googling various combinations of Rachel Green/Friends/Robe, etc. because in one episode of Friends where all of the pals went to Vegas, leaving Rachel home roaming around in a robe ... until she dropped it off, inadvertently seducing poor Ross who was peaking from his apartment across the street. It was an awesome soft long robe that I have never been able to find under a gazillion dollars. Turns out that the budget for that show about young'uns hanging out in New York may not have been accurate to what real young'uns in New York can afford. The horror, the horror. And no pictures of it are to be found in my intense googling. Maybe my computer is just telling me that I google Jennifer Aniston too much - hint taken.

Anyway, this is turning into a painful tale just to say I bought what is most definitely an old man's robe because it was on sale for $15 at K-Mart. Don't judge me, I didn't go looking for it - it was just hanging there in my line of sight while I was trying to find supplies for Ben's Easter basket. I bought a large as I will be quadrupling in size over the next months so I think you can imagine how sexy I look in this thing. Like a walrus in a striped kimono. It may be the single least flattering piece of clothing I have ever owned. Stopped Marcel in his tracks - it's glorious.

For lack of a proper segue, let's chat about having another boy. Yes, a bit of me was hoping for a girl but I'm fine - especially after the bad test results then leaking fluid, I'll be happy with whatever healthy little creature makes his/her grand entrance (is it wrong to wish for a goat baby?). There are exactly two reasons why I have any disappointment whatsoever. Three if you count my Gilmore Girls fantasies about being best buddies with my teenage daughter but Marcel would refuse to be the diner dude in a hat all the time & there would surely have been more shrieking & slamming doors in my Lorelai/Rory relationship. Anyway, my biggest disappointment was with not being able to name a girl. I have a whole list of fruity, flowery, old lady names that I was constantly rearranging to see what worked best. Apparently Magnolia Mae was not be - neither was Memphis Rue or whatever I was teaming with Memphis at the time. And no, there shan't be a third so no girl for us.

I'm not a big fan of anything too over the top for boys in my world but that's probably because we're already working with the gorgeous & different last name of Eisele, which I LOVE. Also any son of ours is already bound to be quirky so let's just keep his name simple to save any added heartache. Luckily the world is a'changing so a lot more interesting names are considered non-goofy so we just have to keep bonking our heads on the table until the right one comes together. Ugh.

Reason #2 I wanted a girl was to decorate a girl's room. This would really only have counted for the early years because any daughter of mine would have been a stubborn, opinionated little turd who would ignore my dreams of "an overgrown garden in Paris in the autumn of 1930" or something painfully annoying & go with modern bright colors just to send me over the interior design edge. Instead I get boys who will probably have boring rooms but at least I'll get to be in charge of them. And I have already put my finger in Marcel's face to warn him that just because I'm outnumbered does not mean I'm not in charge of this house. I will decorate the rest of the home as I see fit & our master bedroom will be as feminine & lovely as I damn well want it to be since I'll need an oasis from the testosterone stink of this place. I am a little bit passionate about decorating, even though you can't really tell from our current bland lounge & dining rooms - I've got the itch to redo some things but it turns out you need money for such endeavours.

Okay, it's 8.00am & Ben is just now waking up after knocking out about 30 seconds after we laid him down last night. Maybe I should just keep up the no napping trend & enjoy the lovely nights! We shall see. Off to start the day with my wild boy.

Tuesday, Shmuesday

Howdy there. I keep disappearing but I promise all is well - every now & then I just don't feel like talking about all this pregnancy crap. Shocking, right? Lord knows I love to complain but it turns out when there is actually something serious to whine about I'd rather just live through it then let it go. But long story short, we are having another rotten little boy who is apparently quite healthy so that's all that's important.

After the amnio I did have some leaking amniotic fluid, which scared the bejeezus out of me. I won't go into all of it because the story involves too many uncomfortable words like fluid, gush, damp, trickle & speculum. Gack. Anyway, I am no longer leaking - huzzah - but I'm still trying to get over the paranoid feeling that it could start again any second.

So, it doesn't appear Ben will nap today. I am willing to accept his non-napping if he is willing to stay in his bed for an hour & 1/2 or so peacefully. Kick around, talk to himself, etc. is just fine - I consider that resting & I have no complaints whatsoever when the child actually goes to bed quickly at night. I love love LOVE when he's go to sleep right away so I can enjoy some time with my husband that doesn't involve us going back & forth saying "No Ben, lie down. Go to sleep. Go to sleep. Goooo to Sleeeeep." Odd that it doesn't work like that.

Hey! Some jerks broke into my car last night. Well, let's be honest - there is a strong chance I forgot to lock my car because I had to bring Ben in & another load of bags or something. I am going to give these turds some credit that they never seem to break into any of the neighborhood cars that have locked doors & they don't do any damage. They rifle through everything but I had nothing worth stealing - they obviously didn't appreciate the awesome pair of Michael Kors shoes in the trunk. Marcel told me I was the only one who could love those things but whatever. The one shitheady thing they did was leave the door open a bit, which they also did to our neighbor (after stealing her perfume!) so I thought my battery was dead. The clicker thing wouldn't work & the light didn't come on but I realized after Marcel came all the way home to jump the car (too broke to pay someone & didn't want to harass a neighbor so the husband felt sorry for me) that of course the clicker doesn't work when the door is open & our car actually shuts off the battery function if the little light stays on too long to save itself. Brilliant car, stupid me. They also smoked in my car or just reeked of smoke themselves so now my car smells like smoke. Sadly, that might be an improvement from the random food smell that I can't get out of there! I shall be cleaning the car this weekend when I can take the car seat out & all that fun stuff.

So anyway, I guess we'll still consider ourselves as doing well since nothing was stolen or broken or whatever & our baby is healthy (I should lead with that, shouldn't I?). But now the baby's older brother is whining so I'm off to negotiate with myself on how long I should make him stay in there to consider him properly rested. I am going to have to break down & do a little sleep training again, I'm afraid - he is such a stubborn turd.

Have a beautiful day wherever you are!

13 April 2011

Winner here, thank you very much.

Hey, guess what??? My luck is a'changing! I'm not going into the whole amnio thing until we have results & something to report but I have other HUGE news. Prepare yourself. I WON SOMETHING! Something good. Something I really wanted. There were two things I've been aiming for in all the babyology.com.au competitions - either a fancy diaper bag because it's just a luxury & I already have a fabulous one or a baby carrier because we had one before & we hated it so we gave it away. I think we were too rash & I've been wanting a nicer one with back support, etc.

I WON A FANCY BABY CARRIER! Check me out folks:

I imagine this will be Marcel & me very soon (except in dove grey)(unless it's not available then I will happily take that lime):

I've been running my mouth off a lot recently about how crap 2011 has been - everything seems to be going wrong for everyone. Recently, I've seen luck turning around for some friends & now I'm hoping it's made its way to us. 

Thank you all again for all your prayers & well wishes. We love you guys madly & should have results before the weekend. 

12 April 2011

Good, bad & Love Hewitt

I'm outside on The Lanai, typing in what I now consider my office. Let's be clear - we have an office. A tiny one that we call The Office of Mystery (we're obviously big on naming parts of the house around here) because it's a mish mash of whatever we need it to be at the moment. There is a full bookshelf, an empty bookshelf, Ben's dresser full of clothes & his changing table, plus Marcel's little tiny desk with his desktop computer in the corner. There is also an awesome old tour poster of U2 from 1984 that I dug out of my parents' attic on one of my last visits. Anyway, that's not the office I'm using because it smells like poop sometimes & because I consider it Marcel's domain & I like to be outside, okay! Anyway, most of the time when I'm out here Ben is running around causing chaos & I spent most of my time saying helpful things like, "Don't throw that in the plants!" or "Put those rocks down!" or "Don't throw those rocks in the plants!" so I treasure my alone time here in my Lanai/Office. And since I'm pretending this is the official workspace of Ashley Incorporated (to be sung in the manner of the Kids, Incorporated theme song from the 80s), I'll share the latest company photo:
Ashley, Incorporated
Introducing Harley, my neighbor's cat & regular officemate
I can't believe you're forcing me to do this but buckle your seatbelts & keep an eye out for Fergie Ferg, aka Stacy Ferguson, who you WOULD NOT recognize unless I warned you. And do not miss the ending - I have to get Marcel to work on getting Harley & I to jump into our logo like that with his graphic wizardry:

Okay, now that I've entertained & informed you & probably forced that song into your head for days, I actually have some serious stuff to talk to you about. And no, it's not more talk about waxing - I think we've all had enough about that for a lifetime.

So, a couple of weeks ago we had an ultrasound done on our new little bun in the oven. It's called a nuchal translucency test that measures different aspects of the fetus & with the results of that plus a particular blood test, it works out what the chances are of the little on having various chromosomal issues. It turns out that our little guy or gal is high risk for down syndrome. Obviously not news that any family wants to hear & I spent a good couple of days crying & moping & feeling like an all-around shit as you do.

We are incredibly lucky to have an awesome GP who gave me the results & she directed us immediately to a local doctor who is also awesome who handles a lot of difficult issues with pregnancy. He's the kind of awesome who manages to fit you in on the same day even though he has about a gazillion other patients & manages to be patient & kind & understanding & go over questions that you didn't even know you had. I'm going to spare you the details because it kills me a little bit to talk about it all but we are quite possibility the most well-informed people on earth about these chromosomal headaches, especially Marcel who has been googling his brains out to find out everything he can.

Every woman who has these tests done is given their "chances" of the abnormalities being in their child. We were given a 1 in 46 chance of our baby having down syndrome. In comparison a friend of ours was 1 in 4,200 or something like that with one child & about 1 in 5,000 for the other! Yikes. I know it sounds a bit dire & that's how I saw it the first few days but the more we talk to doctors & other families who have gone through this we are able to put it in better perspective. We're feeling quite positive at the moment & we have been given nothing but encouragement every step along the way.

The specialist we saw let us know that since the "bad" result came from my blood test instead of the baby's measurements, it's a higher chance of being a false positive than if it were the other way around & we've heard countless stories from others who were 1 in 10 risk or even 1 in 2 & were fine so that's great to hear. All in all it doesn't actually change our personal chances as we know what our exact risk is but it's good to hear. Our GP was incredibly kind as I boo-hoo'ed in her office about how while we're in 1 in 46 of being affected, we are 45 in 46 of being healthy. But some family does have to be that 1, unfortunately.

It's funny how the littlest things give you the most comfort. I've been very shaky & withdrawn about the whole situation - I apologize sincerely for those of you who have had emails or calls ignored or who have wondered why I seem to have disappeared - & always found myself coming back to the theory of someone has to be that one, which I couldn't shake. I hate to even admit where I found my source of perspective because I don't like to admit how much I enjoy The Big Bang Theory but there is an old episode of that show where Penny & Leonard are trying to decide if they should date & Sheldon explains the story of Shrodinger's Cat to Penny. They summed it up in very basic terms & I am going to trim it down even further so then will provide a link to the real explanation & please don't tell me if I have it completely wrong! Basically the theory is of a cat that is put in a sealed box (I think it's just a theory, I don't think they actually did this). Because you can't tell what the heck's going on in there, it is safe to consider the cat both alive & dead because you're right either way until you open that box. Ya know? Anyway, so I took from that it's perfectly okay for me to go ahead with this pregnancy, treating it as if the baby is perfectly healthy. Because it is. This child is 100% healthy until the doctor says that it's not. Then we'll deal with that if it comes to that.

I'm obviously not tap-dancing down the street asking strangers to pat my baby bump or anything like that but it's helping me not curl up into a ball on the couch. Most importantly & the whole point of this post is that we're having an amniocentesis tomorrow, which will settle everything & let the cat out of the box if you will. Because we're feeling optimistic, we're excited & anxious to get this done so we can get on with our lives & start celebrating this pregnancy. It's sad because at the very beginning we were so shocked that I was pregnant that it was hard to process, then once we accepted it & were happy, we became cautious because the miscarriage risk is so high (20% in Australia) for the first trimester. Once we were past that & announced it on facebook like the schmuck that I am, we find this out the very next day. We haven't been able to be enthusiastic & make grand plans for this kiddo yet & we really can't wait to do that! Luckily, the results only take 2-3 days so I'll obviously let you knows guy as soon as we process it ourselves but pray for us until then if you don't mind.

Hilariously, the doctor who refers people for amnios all day every day is sending us to the only place he sends women for these things. The best place in all of Sydney for amnio - where they have the best reputation, the lowest rate of miscarriage risk & somehow they do it almost painlessly. Where is it? At the Adventist hospital The San in Wahroonga, directly across the street from Marcel's office!!! He has lunch there all the time & I worked in the nursing roster office for a few months between Nat Geo & RGM. Another high five for the good old Adventist health system!

And just to be extra annoying, our appointment is at 9.30am tomorrow (Weds here), which is 7.30pm Eastern time in America, 6.30pm Central. If you happen to catch that time, think of us if you don't mind because we'll be a bit nervous & I'll have a giant needle going into my stomach. Yahoo.

And now just to make sure we don't end on a bummer note, I bring you more Kids, Incorporated featuring the stellar Jennifer Love Hewitt (or just Love Hewitt as she was known then). Actually, this may be way more of a bummer than anything I have ever known on earth.

11 April 2011

Good day, sunshine

Let me announce that my darling son went down for his nap today without drama, stalling or me having to lose my cool. If everyday was like this, I would be the most relaxed mama on earth! Alas, I have a feeling there must be a disturbance in the universe, some lucky fluke that caused it so I'm not holding my breath for it to happen again anytime soon. I am also aware that this guarantees that it will be a major pain in the butt to get him to sleep tonight.

I think I've officially gone overboard on blaming things on pregnancy. I find myself using a pinch of a Southern accent suddenly this week & I don't know where it's come from so I'm blaming hormones. I don't know if they work that way, though. I've also been repeating odd phrases - saying things like "I'd watch so & so read the phone book" when I think they're a good actor. And keep in mind I spent a gazillion hours a day every day with a toddler so he's the one I keep saying this stuff to! He is learning way too much about my preferences for entertainment & unfortunately my baby brain truly is affecting my taste. We were driving around the other day & a song came on the radio that I enjoy - while bopping around to it, I found myself announcing "Ben, this is the single greatest song that has ever been written. You remember that!" The song? I Gotta Feeling by the Black Eyed Peas. Luckily, I was able to take it back but what it if it's too late & that was the moment that his brain officially started retaining the trivia that I routinely belch out?!? How do I undo this?

P.S. Don't get me wrong, I really do enjoy that song way too much for someone my age, boringness & with my lack of rhythm.

Another bonus for today was that I found the veggie bacon back in stock at our grocery store - it was practically overflowing the shelf so I'm a happy girl. Of course after all this anticipation there is a strong chance I'll have two bites of it & never want to taste it again. I also ate an entire bag of chips with a little tub of dip - I hope this craving ends soon because it really is making me hate myself, yet I can't say no!

Not much else to report so I shall return to my ever-loving-never-ending task of rolling balls out of Play-Doh & handing them to Ben so he can say "Ball!" & add it to the growing pile. There is a good chance I will chuck all four tubs of Play-Doh, which of course are no longer distinguishable in color just mish-mashed, in the nearest river before this day is over. I can only make balls & snakes out of it - I like to think if I had more time before someone snatched it out of my hands that I could make something more complex & creative but we'll never know!

So anyway, do come back tomorrow because I'll actually have something worthwhile to talk to you about. Hope to see you then!

09 April 2011

hair did

Here's a head scratcher for you. Yesterday, I finally broke down & got my hair trimmed. Hallelujah, etc! I didn't go to my normal expensive place so we could save money but then I got suckered into getting an extra conditioning treatment (I will say yes to anything that involves a scalp massage, I admit it) so it ended up costing more than the expensive place. Grrrrr. Anyway, that's not the head scratcher. So, it was just a trim & yesterday it looked just the same but shorter, exactly what I expected. And yet this morning when I woke up, suddenly THIS was on my head:

I am not exaggerating - I went to bed with blah & woke up with The Rachel. I don't know what happened but I have my suspicions that the ghost of a 90s stylist attacked me, protesting the years of extreme straightening that followed this iconic do. It doesn't even look bad, it even looks downright styled with the little flippy bits on the side. Bizarro. If I could take a picture of myself without showing my scuzzy face, I would share this hair shock with you. I'm assuming once I shower & dry it on my own it will be back to its flat & boring self.

Okay, through the magic of blogging I am now showered & dressed. Well, pretty much dressed except my jeans are unbuttoned & unzipped to make way for my gut baby bump. Must break out the pants extender things today. Hair is looking better, less frou-frou & less like a 90s sitcom character. And again, I have nothing against 90s hair - while I would never request anything other than simple modern hair when I go to the salon, if my hair stylist (only if it's Lori in Nashville or one the ladies at Allure in Terrigal - my trusted hair guild if you will) said, "Hey Ashley, we should try something short, tousled & sassy. Something ala Meg Ryan from (insert movie here)" I would probably be so excited that she'd have to peel me off the ceiling before the haircutting could begin! I think everyone has their decade & between quirky hair, "alternative" music & the movie Singles I would accept nothing less than the 90s.

Marcel is off to help a friend work today - hard labor the poor boy so it's another day of The Adventures of Mama & Ben. I'll give you a sneak preview that it probably involves a lot of Ben running around & Mama sitting on various surfaces encouraging him. I do have more energy than before & much less nausea (nervously knocking on wood over here) but I'm still pretty useless. I think we'll attempt a walk today if I can figure out how to properly pump up the front tire on our fancy stroller. I have got to get some exercise in this pregnancy because I'm already turning into Jabba. My first pregnancy I did alright keeping most of my junk in the belly where it belongs but this time it's just making itself comfortable wherever it likes. Not cool.

Also on my list of pregnancy complaints is the total takeover of facial hair - I will be the first to say I am blessed by pale hair so I try to temper my complaints but those of you who share my peachfuzz tendencies understand that it is a serious situation. If I don't get my "upper lip" waxed regularly & the sun hits me just right, you'd think Matthew McConaughey had taken residence up there. And you may remember from my last pregnancy the fluffy kitten that curled up on my neck? Yeah, it's back. I'm taking care of that hot mess today myself - no one needs a fuzzy neck! I usually refuse to do any obvious waxing on myself for the realization that all mistakes are on public display but desperate times call for desperate measures! 

I'm sure there are lovely parts to being pregnant but I am just gobsmacked by the truly bizarre & terrible side effects that sneak up on you when you least expect it. Today's craving is the same as it as been for a few days - I would like some veggie bacon please. It has been mysteriously out of stock at the two grocery stores I've checked for it recently. I am alarmed by this because let's face it, I am probably the only person who regularly puts veggie bacon on my shopping list. Do I have some new arch-nemesis out to destroy the things I enjoy? Or worse, is Sanitarium considering not making it anymore? NOTE TO SANITARIUM: You don't want to do this. You have no idea how much So Good soy milk our household consumes. You mess with us we'll take you down, homies!

Okay, I should go. Ben has discovered the joy of throwing all the pillows off the outdoor daybed onto the ground & rolling around on them. I'm trying to decide whether to wrangle the situation to make it slightly safer or to just knock him out of the way & take over the pillow pile for myself! If my Rachel hair shows back up, I'll be sure to grab an umbrella, jump in a fountain & take some pictures for you. Promise me you'll do the same if it sneaks up on you!

06 April 2011

nap time

I don't think I can blame this on pregnancy, but I've been in a very weird mood recently. I've been in the mood to win something! Isn't that strange? I can't put my finger on what started it but I'm aggressively entering my witty comments on every giveaway on babyology.com.au to no avail. Maybe I'm not adorable enough? I refuse to stoop to rhyming if that's what it takes but I think I'm pretty darn clever & I know I haven't gone over the 25 word limit like some bozos. What gives?? I find myself searching for other competitions too but I'm not having any luck. I don't know how to feed this craving, I'm afraid. I can't force anyone to let me win something. Can I? Pregnancy guilt doesn't do a damn thing on babyology where everyone is expecting or has a new little someone to brag about. I have got to find some competition that I am capable of winning - help me people!

It's getting close to naptime in the house & I'm getting nervous. Ben has flat-out refused to nap the past two days, which drives me to a state of hysteria like you've never experienced. He may not need a nap but his mother sure does. I need to lie perfectly flat for at least an hour if that's okay, even if it's just reading a book or watching crap TV. Speaking of crap TV, why didn't anyone ever tell me that Perfect Strangers was on in the afternoon here? Why on earth would that show be on in this day & age? That's Marcel's favorite theme song of all time, though sometimes he gets confused & just starts singing the words "Perrrfectttt Straaaangers can make your dreams come true" to the Muppet Babies theme song tune. That may or may not be why I married him.

So yes, Ben is no longer napping, he is no longer eating much at all, he's not putting much effort into talking or listening to me or mowing the lawn or whatever else almost 2 year olds should be doing. Therefore, I am obviously feeling like the most competent mother ever. I have taught him the word "chippy" finally so he can harass me for practically the only food he's willing to eat. Thankfully chippies (aka hot chips, aka french fries) are ever so healthy so we have nothing to worry about. Also, technically he pronounces it "pippy" so maybe that should be a fail but he uses such a perky inflection that it brings it back to the win column.

I know it's not healthy or helpful to compare your child to other children or to compare yourself to other mothers, but heavens almighty it's impossible not to. I look at all you useful members of society cooking meals, going out with friends & family, cleaning your house, not to mention those of you who have JOBS & your kids eat, sleep & recite Shakespeare's sonnets by heart. My son just stood on his two puzzles, immediately slipped, fell off & broke a blade off of his wooden helicopter. And now he's trying to eat the wooden blade - that's right, my deliciously yummy banana pancakes are a no-go but he will chomp on wooden toys. Ah well, I keep reminding myself that he's just an independent spirit & that untamed brain of his will probably find the cure for cancer, put an end to world hunger or at least help me write creative enough comments to win a damn baby sling or decoration on babyology!! And as much as I complain, I love the boy just as he is & will delight in reminding him how much of a headache he was when he's older ... in prison, where he has no choice but to sit & listen to me ramble because he's so desperate for visitors.

Okay, I'm off to attempt to put the boy to bed. After I put a onesie on him so he can't pull off his diaper & pee in bed, which is still his favorite hobby. I'm sure Gandhi's mother had similar problems.


I had lots of things I wanted to discuss with you today but I'm just going to let it blow over. I get wound up when things don't go so well with Ben, which is pretty much every day, but instead of hyperventilating I emailed some friends & I already feel better. There is nothing better than great friends, even when they're on the other side of the planet & a million timezones away.

Okay, I am going to complain about one thing. What the hell is this?
Image from smh.com.au
This monstrosity is the future home of one Gisele Bundchen. That's right, my arch-nemesis is going to be living in this house. I would post a shot of my own humble home as comparison but THERE IS NO ROOM LEFT ON THE PAGE! Girl needs to take her ugly-haired husband (they got married right?) & her own little Benjamin & just hide in this castle because I have had enough of her games. I will get you lady - whenever we move back to America, I'm sure we'll magically be in a financial position to move into your neighborhood. We may have to shack up in someone's garden shed but we'll be there with our Benjamin & we're going to be a whole heck of a lot more awesome than you. So there.

Okay, I originally had the picture bigger but when I posted it, it cut off the right wing of the house. When I changed the size, suddenly my text was wrapping around it. I have no idea what I'm doing on this blog but I'm pretty sure a certain supermodel is hacking into my account & wrecking havoc with my settings. Too much time on her dainty, perfect hands!

05 April 2011

hola muchachos

I wish you could see me right now. Really I don't. I'm on my side on the couch, propped up by pillows, moaning & groaning because I ate my lunch too fast & too late & I've abandoned my proud proper 10-finger typing posture. Hen-pecking today so probably won't use full sentences & will give up all together soon. Ben is luckily sucked into Thomas the Tank Engine at the moment so at least I don't have to feel guilty for not entertaining him. Nope, just have to feel guilty about him watching too much TV during this pregnancy. I love the Thomas the Tank Engine theme song - so long, so overly descriptive. The best is the long list of every train & their personal attribute ... until they get to Toby where they just give up & say "Well, let's say he's square." THAT'S how I feel today. "Ashley? Well, let's say she's conscious." That's it, nothing more, just existing at this point.

So that's as far as I made it yesterday. Oh well, nothing else to tell you about the day - spent a lot of time outside in the sun while it was making its appearance. I was still feeling quite disgusting & in pain so I just dragged a blanket out there & sprawled out while Ben played. It drove him nuts & he kept trying to drag me off to play but I eventually won, which is actually sad when I say it that way. I also aimed my head into the brightest patch I could find, strongly willing the sun to take pity on me & bless me with some natural highlights since I still can't afford real ones. I am finally getting a hair cut this weekend at least so that will be a giant leap back towards civilized society!

Let's see what else. We ran some errands yesterday morning so naturally Ben fell fast asleep in the car on the way to said errands at a bright & early 9.30am! The end of daylight savings has thrown the poor boy for a loop. I have a policy that whenever he falls asleep in the car, I aim for Terrigal & park at the Haven so I can watch the waves smash the rocks while the boy is passed out. Nothing like a sea breeze through the car & the sun on the windows to keep a kid snoozing. Do you think it would be wrong for me to just do his nap like that every day? It's wrong, isn't it? Anything that indulgent must be bad for us. Anyway, now when we head out I throw a book in the car just in case he falls asleep & I get bored of the waves - two hours of peace & quiet & can't feel guilty because I'm not cleaning or anything. It's heaven.

On the other extreme, today he woke up at 5.30am & I gave him a bottle. This 5.30am business is ridonkulous but it's another reaction to the time change & the bottle usually buys me an extra 15 minutes or so to wake up more properly but this morning he went back to sleep ... until 8.00am!! Had I known this was a possibility I would have stayed in bed after giving him his bottle but nooooo, I expected he'd be back up momentarily so I got up. Heavens almighty, I've bored myself with this story. Oh yeah, he also skipped his nap completely so there's that too. Okay, now moving on.

Accomplished something spectacular today as well. I made some decaf sweet tea! How glorious!!!! I don't know why I never thought of this before - there's nothing easier to make than sweet tea & nothing makes me happier. Well, a lot of things make me happier but sweet tea is pretty high up on the list. And because it's decaf I feel like I can drink tons & tons but I expect the sugar content probably ain't too hot for the baby either. And can I tell you that we do not have a jug for drinks! I was actually going to take the filter out of the water thing but you can't take the whole section out & that would have messed up the sugar combining with the tea so I had to settle for using a decorative container swiped from one of our shelves. I have to say it was a panicky decision that I was afraid I would regret & I had to rearrange fridge shelves to make room for it but it is pretty darn adorable! It's a country looking glass thing that actually says "Country ...." something on it & that's appropriate for the tea. If my camera battery wasn't dead I'd actually take a picture. Precious.

Also made a veggie meatloaf, which is still cooking. The only reason this is big news is because it involves sautéing onions, which has been the arch nemesis of my gag reflex for months now but it went just fine. I halved the amount of onion & doubled the amount of red capsicum/bell pepper to help balance the smell out & it worked a charm.

Hahahaha, just a side note that Marcel is currently dragging my jug of tea out of the fridge to take a picture of it for me with his phone. Bless that man for indulging the whims of a whiny pregnant lady. I think he's currently working out a lighting scheme so this could take a while. Did I mention that the tea is a little bitter? I did the tried & true Southern trick of adding a pinch of baking powder to the water to take out bitterness (okay, a website told me to - not sure if it's tried & true Southern) but do you think it's the fact that it's decaf or did I just not add enough sugar? I didn't want to add more than a cup of sugar for fear that I'm caramelizing the dear child in my womb & it's not bitter enough to turn this sensitive tasting machine off of it so it's still hitting the spot & soothing my craving. All good in the hood.
So the lighting didn't work wonderfully but he did set it with my pear so that's awesome.
Please note that while I have had a few cups of tea, it's a large jug so I haven't had THAT much.
Okay, that's all I've got. I'm burping sweet tea & need to go check my veggie loaf because I am a starvin' marvin! Hope all is well where you are. xx