Saturday, July 31, 2010

From the Peanut Gallery- Week Eight: The Kidney Bean

Here I am, 8 weeks pregnant, and experiencing the typical first trimester.  Nausea, vomiting, exhaustion.  Lather, rinse, repeat.  I am SO fortunate to work part-time!  I have been lucky enough to nap each afternoon, and be taken care of by a wonderful, loving husband each evening.

What is new this week?  Crying.  The pregnancy hormones are in full effect.  We went to T.G.I. Friday's for dinner this week.  I saw that Oreo Madness, my once favorite dessert that had since been removed from the Friday's menu, had miraculously returned!  And I cried.  Then later on, I cried again, still just overjoyed that the Oreo Madness was back.  Mind you, I didn't order it.  I felt too sick to eat it.  I was just happy that I now had the option for Oreo Madness to be back in my life.

And the MOST AMAZING part of week 8?  I FINALLY had my first OB appointment!!  HUZZAH!!

Those pesky hormone levels of mine came back to haunt us for a moment.  The doctor was fearful what with progesterone levels as low as mine, that the baby may not have grown like she would like to see.  She even went so far as to be skeptical as to whether or not the baby would have a heartbeat.  Needless to say, J and I were on pins and needles waiting for the ultrasound.  Turns out, our little peanut is a serious fighter.  Progesterone, schmogesterone.  Baby measured three days AHEAD of schedule, and had a strong, steady heartbeat of 169 beats per minute.  Take that, doctor!!

After seeing the ultrasound results, the doctor is no longer concerned in the slightest.  AND, we have baby's first picture!

Baby's fingers and toes grew out of those itty bity hands and feet this week, and her little brain was busy forming lots of neural pathways.  And good news!  That tail of hers is just about gone.

Yep, it's been a good week.

Friday, July 30, 2010

Free To Be

Now I realize that I am in a highly emotional state these days, what with the raging hormones and all...but I saw a Target commercial the other day that brought on the tears!

When I was little, I had a record that I played over and over again.  My parents eventually replaced it with a tape.  And finally, as an adult, I bought it on CD for my classroom.

Are there any other children of the 70's or 80's that had a love affair with "Free To Be, You And Me" like I did?
How I loved that album.  I listened to it over and over again.  I longed for William to get that doll, and for Atalanta to win the race, and for Dudley Pippin to catch a break.

This new Target commercial shows some little tykes heading off back to school, while in the background the title track plays.  When I heard it, it stopped me mid-sentence and instantly brought me back to my childhood, laying on the floor in front of the record player, chin propped up on hands, feet swinging back and forth to Marlo Thomas and Friends.

Ah, nostalgia.

Thank you, Target, for bringing me back to those simple days.

Like I needed another reason to love Target, right?

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Say it ain't so!

Can this possibly be true??

I recently read an article about food trends (yes, apparently I even like to keep up with trends in the culinary world) that are on their way out.

Number one on the list?  Cupcakes.

I am choosing to believe that the author of this article was misinformed.  Cupcakes are the most whimsically delicious of the dessert treats, if you ask me.  And ever since Carrie and Miranda enjoyed those confectionary delights from the Magnolia Bakery on Sex in the City, lots and LOTS of people seem to agree with me!

Cupcake shops are in booming business all over the place.  In fact, even here we have a cupcake "boutique", The Cupcake Shoppe.  I have personally sampled their cupcakes, and just as you'd expect- nothing short of delectable.  And dainty.  And cute.  A dessert girl's dream come true.

So I say pooh-pooh on you, cupcake haters.  In my humble opinion?  Cupcakes are here to stay.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Remember these?

Oh, 80's.  You were such fun.

I found this little slide show to be delightful!  If you are a child of the 80's, and you cared AT ALL about keeping up with the trends, you will certainly remember some of these.

And if you are a teacher...this will help you remember that our slap bracelets were certainly as annoying- if not more so- than Silly Bandz.


Monday, July 26, 2010

From the Peanut Gallery- Six Weeks: The Lentil

Well, there's this thing called Pregnancy Brain.  I officially have it.  So sorry to have posted Week 7 info before Week 6 had been posted.  Forgive my mushy mind!

Q: How are you feeling?
A: Ask and ye shall receive.  All. nausea. all. the. time.  It hit me on the 4th of July- the REAL beginning of morning sickness.  The occasional waves that were hitting me the past few weeks were nothing compared to what I am now experiencing.

Don't get me wrong- I'm still happy about this.  ESPECIALLY since we haven't seen the doctor yet!  For now, this is the only reassurance I have that all is right with baby.

Q: What are you eating these days?  Any of those crazy pregnancy cravings?
A: The simple answer is that I'm eating very little.  Basically enough to give peanut some sustenance, but not much more.  Anything other than a small snack just doesn't sit well with me.  Apparently digestion just doesn't work as well during pregnancy.

Also, absolutely nothing sounds good to me.  Until something very specific suddenly does, and I must have it immediately.

Saltines and ginger ale are my diet staples.  I've actually lost two pounds!  I'm sure I'll make up for those later in the pregnancy, though...

Q: What's new with baby this week?
A: Her ears, nose, and mouth are forming!  And she has arm and leg buds!  So basically, she looks like a little alien, but an ever so slightly more human alien.  Also, brains, muscles, and bones are busily forming away.

Q: Tired yet?
A: And speaking of all this baby forming- remember when I said I hadn't had the so-tired-it's-like-I've-been-hit-by-a-truck feeling?  Yeah, well the truck hit me this week.  I am most certainly asleep by 9:00 (if not earlier), and if I'm not working, I'll get up around 7:00 to eat a few crackers for my nauseous stomach, then go back to sleep for another two or three hours.  Then I'll need an afternoon nap.  Yep, tired.

That's all for this week, folks!

From the Peanut Gallery- Seven Weeks: The Blueberry

Wow!  A blueberry!  That's like so big you can see it and everything!  And look!  The whole quarter fits in he picture this week!

Q: So, what's new?
A: Throwing up.  That's new.  Favorite pregnancy moment of the week?  I get home from work, not feeling hungry at all, because I feel so sick, but knowing that I MUST eat something, because I feel so sick.  I open the pantry, and the mere sight of the food contained within sends me booking it to the sink.  Good times!
**Yes, I know, I asked for this...what was I thinking?

Q: Whatcha' eatin'?
A: Randomness.  I left the store yesterday with Life and Rice Krispies cereal, Spaghetti-O's, vegetable soup, strawberries, bananas, and Eggo's.  These are all things that have sounded good to me at some moment or another over the past week.  But really, still not loving food so much.

Q: And the peanut?
A: Baby had a growth spurt this week!  She doubled in size!  Again, amazing what this little peanut is doing right now.  Big development?  Little webbed hands and feet emerged from her little arm and leg buds.  And a bunch of internal organs, like the liver, pancreas, and intestines, are all formed and working away!

Yep, I've officially run out of energy to continue typing.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

From the Peanut Gallery- Five Weeks: The Sesame Seed

Yep, the peanut is the size of a sesame seed this week.  Still pretty tiny, huh?

I've decided to take a Q & A approach to these weekly updates, so if you have any Q's, lemme know, and I'll give you an A!

Q: What symptoms, if any, have arrived this week?
A: Slowly but surely, this baby is making her presence known (and yes, I already refer to the peanut has a her, so get over it).

I am having waves of nausea every now and again, but they seem to be picking up in frequency.  So far, no actual dash to the bathroom, but I am thinking about it more and more often.  I have found that eating something small every two hours really helps!

By the way, all of the nausea is MORE THAN WELCOME here.  I will gladly take it.  I worked really hard to make this baby!  I just want it to stick around.  The illness tells me my hormones are raging away, which is a good thing.

My other symptom of note is my incredibly heightened sense of smell- I call it my "Spidey Sense."  My Spidey Senses have told me that I no longer care for the smell of bacon, corn, or ranch dressing.  However, as of now, I can still eat these things...I just don't want to smell them.  I was also keenly aware that one of our waiters on vacation had been smoking the marijuana, because to me, he reeked of reefer (although no one else could smell, huh?)

Q: How's your energy level?
A: I'm slowing down a little.  I've always been a napper, but now I find them a little more necessary.  However, I have yet to feel that I'm-so-tired-it's-like-I've-been-hit-by-a-truck feeling.  Except one night on vacation when my eyelids were closing on their own accord at the 7:30.  Yeah, I'm a little tired.

Q: Now that you're pregnant, what do you miss the most?
A: Nothing, so far!  I found out on vacation that O'Douls actually tastes like real beer, and makes me feel like I'm still part of the grown-up crowd.  And the bleu cheese they put on my favorite burger at Ruby Tuesday is made with pasteurized milk, so I can still eat it!  HUZZAH!

Q: What's happening with baby this week?
A: Well, the peanut looks more like a tadpole than an actual human baby.  Tail and all.  BUT, its little rudimentary heart starts beating (in a completely uncoordinated manner) this week.  Baby is also busy growing the beginnings of all her other internal organs.  Exciting, no?

Until next week!

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

My name is Forrest...

Forrest Gump.

One of my all time favorite movies.  Hands-down, top five.  I love this movie so much that I watch it every time it's on TV, even though I know it's so much better on DVD and I can always just pop my copy in the player.

I find Forrest to be such a lovable character.  You just can't help but smile when he tells the President that he's gotta pee.

Ever since I first saw the movie, I've told myself that someday I would read the book.  I love me some readin', and I've almost ALWAYS found the book version of any story to be infinitely better than the movie version.

Sadly, this is not true in the case of Forrest, Forrest Gump.

I just finished reading the novel today, and I couldn't believe how VASTLY different it was from the movie version.

**Spoiler Alert for anyone who may choose to read the novel!**

So, Forrest is a little challenged.  In the book, he's referred to as an "idiot."  Along the way, he meets Jenny, Bubba, and Lieutenant Dan.  These are basically the only similarities to the movie.

In the book, Forrest is a savant in many ways, a champion chess player, gifted musician, able to solve advanced mathematical equations, and is recruited by NASA and sent into space with an ape named Sue who then becomes his best friend.  He plays the "Creature From the Black Lagoon" and meets Raquel Welch.  He befriends "Big Sam," a cannibal king, and defeats the evil pygmies.

Odd happenings for ole' Forrest.

And the kicker?  He doesn't get Jenny in the end!  She marries some other guy and lives happily ever after with her new husband, Doug, and Forrest, Jr.

All-in-all, still an enjoyable read.  I laughed out loud at a few of Forrest's antics.  But a word to the wise?  Don't expect this to be as amazingly amazing as the movie.

Kudos to the screenwriters of the movie, for taking this interesting character and giving him an excellent story.

Monday, July 19, 2010

From the Peanut Gallery- Four Weeks: The Poppy Seed

I am newly pregnant.  After all of the trials and tribulations, heartaches, hopes, dreams, and wishes, I am finally pregnant.

On Sunday, June 13, I realized that I hadn't taken any pregnancy tests yet this cycle.  Several potential testing days had gone by without me peeing on anything.  It was sort of a miracle, as I clearly have a pee-on-a-stick problem.

So I got to peein'.  And I could. not. believe. my. eyes.

Two lines.

It took me several minutes to process what I was seeing.  I walked away, then came back and looked again.  Then I walked away.  Then I came back to look again.  There was definitely something there.  So I grabbed a digital test- foolproof- and tried that one, as well.

My friend Cecie used this kind of test.  She had told me that when she found out she was pregnant, that test took forever to show a result.  There's a little hourglass that flips over again and again while you wait.  Cecie said that her hourglass flipped for minutes before she got her positive result.

So imagine my surprise when that hourglass flipped over and back, then over one more time...and in about ten seconds, the magic word "Pregnant" appeared on its little digital display.

This is when I burst into tears.  And when I say tears, I don't mean the graceful single tear slipping silently down my cheek.  I mean huge, wracking, loud, sloppy sobs.

This sent J running.  We met on the stairs, me on my way down, him on his way up.  I couldn't get the words out.  I simply shoved the digital test in his face.

We stood on the stairs and hugged and cried and cried and hugged for at least five minutes.  (Okay, well I kept up the sloppy crying...J mostly just hugged.)

We called a few family members to share the good news, and enjoyed the day in disbelief.  We went out for a celebratory dinner at The Melting Pot, one of our favorites!

So this week is week four.  And our baby is the size of a poppy seed.  So far, other than the fact that my peaches just tasted off this morning, I don't feel pregnant.  But I say bring on the terrible symptoms.

I've been waiting to feel pregnant for a long time!

New Feature: From the Peanut Gallery

Since discovering that we have our own little "peanut" on the way, I've been blogging- but not publishing- weekly pregnancy updates.  This is yet another way for me to keep far away friends and family and other interested parties up-to-date on all that is happening with me and baby during this wild ride known as pregnancy.  Plus, I am sure I will love looking back on all of this someday!  (You know, when I'm feeling sorry for myself someday and I need to remember that it could be worse...worse like morning sickness.)

I won't bombard you with all of the backlogged entries at one time, but over the next week or two I'll try and get caught up!  Enjoy!

Friday, July 16, 2010

On a serious note...seriously.

**The original body of this entry was written back in April, but I didn't post it.  I just wasn't quite ready for my blog to "go there."  I later revisited this writing, and added to it.  The section entitled "The Next Chapter" was written in June.

I am finally ready to post.**

Trying to make a baby sucks.

In the beginning, there was excitement.  I was SO excited that we were going to do this.  We had only been married for a month when we decided to ditch the BC and start a family.  We were both so anxious to become parents, and we knew that we would be terrific at it.  We had lots of love to give a baby, and so we were ready to make one!  Of course, it didn't happen that first month.  And of course, I cried, because some little part of me really thought that it would happen for us right away.

The next couple of months weren't too bad.  My period showed up every month, but every month I told myself that it was still early.  In the meantime, I started obsessing about my body, my cycle.  I started using ovulation predictors and taking my basal body temperature, keeping charts of what was going on with my body each and every day throughout the cycle.  I did abundant Internet research and came across a website that had numerous forums for those trying to conceive, or "TTC" as the lingo goes.  I spent hours there each day, reading up on the struggles, issues, and happy stories that so many women were experiencing.  I was truly immersed.

After a few months of that, I put the thermometer away and let my subscription to the fertility website expire.  I knew that my cycle was normal, and that everything was doing what it was supposed to do (as far as I can tell at home, anyway).  Those other things were just causing my obsession to deepen, and I knew that it was probably causing more stress than it was worth.

Of course, every month when my period would rear her ugly head, I would have a mini-meltdown.  After we passed the six month mark, the meltdowns started happening more frequently.  Entering month eight now.  Still no positive tests.  Melting down weekly.

I am so overwhelmed with emotions that I just can't keep them in check.  I feel:
  • Impatience.  I know that this is a waiting game, but it turns out, I'm no good at waiting.
  • Frustration.  Is my body broken?  Is Jason's?  Why isn't this happening for us?
  • Jealousy.  I am green with envy.  I am jealous of everyone I know who has a baby, and sometimes I can't bring myself to feel happy for people who announce new pregnancies.
  • Guilt.  This is the time in my marriage when I am supposed to just enjoy my husband and marvel at the fact that we're married and get to spend the rest of our lives together.  Why can't I just do that and be happy?
  • Anger.  I am more than annoyed whenever anyone tells me to just "relax, and it will happen."  ESPECIALLY when the person who passes along that comment got pregnant without having to think about it.  REGRET also goes hand-in-hand with this one.  I wish that I had never told anyone we were trying.
  • Sadness.  Every. Single. Time. I see a baby, I am so sad that I don't have one.
  • Fear.  What if something really is wrong with me?  What if we have to take drastic measures that will drain us emotionally and financially?  What if the constant stress and worry damages my marriage?
With emotions running as deep as these, it's no wonder they spill over with more and more frequency.  (And it's also a cruel trick of nature that negative pregnancy tests coincide with PMS.)

Through all of this, though, we will keep trying.

Onward we go, into another new month...


After another month had passed after the above was written, J had a routine physical.  He mentioned to the doctor that we were having trouble conceiving, and she referred him to a specialist for a quick analysis.

Turns out, we really were working with a problem.

I headed off to my doctor, who quickly scheduled some tests for me (some simple blood tests, some painful, invasive procedures), informing me that it wasn't impossible to get pregnant on our own, just not very likely.

After my test results came back, we would be handed off the to fertility specialist for our IUI (intrauterine insemination) consultation.  Basically, I would be taking injectable medications to cause hyperovulation, then J's swimmers would be deposited exactly where they needed to be, eliminating the need for them to swim at all.  My doc said that assuming all of my tests turned out okay, that our problem could be "easily overcome" by this procedure.

This news came as a shock at first.  I didn't expect to immediately be sent for this kind of help.  It made sense, given our situation, but it was still a little disheartening to hear that making a baby the old fashioned way just wasn't very likely for us.

Then after J and I had thought about it a little, it didn't seem so bad.  As silly as it sounds, we felt a little validated.  That there was a reason that all these tests were turning out negative month after month.

And, we had a plan.  We'd get my tests taken care of so that we could take the results with us to the fertility specialist.  Then hopefully we could get going with the IUI the following month.  It was exciting again to think that within two or three months, I could be pregnant.  What once seemed like an eternity seemed like such a short time before we could have a baby on board.

Although I was a little nervous about all that was going on, I was also anxious for my tests to be done.  Bloodwork- check.  Easy enough, even for me, the one who hates needles.  Now to wait for the call to tell me if all of my hormone levels appeared to be normal- turns out, another complication- they weren't.  But we still needed the whole picture.

The next test was the scary one.  Painful.  Invasive.  Blech.  I was really nervous about this one.  However, I actually said to J, "I just can't wait for my period to get here so we can just get on with this test."

WHOA.  Did those words actually just come out of my mouth??  They sure did.  Again, there was a plan, and I wanted it to MOVE ALONG.

Here's the kicker...while I was busy waiting for my period to arrive so I could schedule the scary test, I was also busy growing a baby.

Yep.  I was pregnant.

And so preoccupied with the plan to make that baby that it didn't even occur to me that maybe we wouldn't need the plan after all.

We did it.  We beat the odds.  We made a baby.

 Baby Anderson!  Due 2/24/11

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

The furture is now.

So this is our latest purchase:

Turns our, J came with guns.  Me?  Not so much the gun fan.  But I have been pretty cool about them.  (By cool, I mean that twice I've actually touched one of the guns.  I have refused to fire them, however.)

I HAVE been after him for quite sometime, however, to get a safe.  I just feel better about having guns in the house if they're locked safely away.

Enter the amazing "Amazon Deal of the Day."

We got this guy for a steal- a $500 safe for $150.  Awesomeness, no?

The coolest part about this safe?  It's biometric.  Now, I'm not gonna lie.  I originally had to look up what that meant.  Turns out?  It means we don't use keys or a combination to get into this safe...


Yes, people, the future is now.  And it resides in my home.  To get access to the
weapons of mass destruction
perfectly safe handguns, we merely need to place our finger in that little box and it will scan our fingerprint, allowing us entry.

Is that the coolest, or what?

Take THAT, bad guys!

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

What do you think of this?

I'd like to know, really.

So basically this is an insect repellent that clips on- hence the name.  Yes, that's right, you clip it on.  To your pants.  Like a huge, blue pager from hell.  And you walk around with it.

Now, I'm all for scaring away those pesky mosquitoes.  ESPECIALLY since my blood is evidently SO delicious to them that within minutes of the dusk hour I am suddenly covered with trillions (yes, that's right, TRILLIONS- no melodrama here) of huge, welt-like, itchy, scratchy bites.  However, I am not about to sport a giant blue device on my clothing to keep them away.  That thing will NOT pass for an accessory.

J thinks it looks like a great invention (of course he does).

I think I'll take the smelly spray.

Friday, July 9, 2010

I've been a neglectful blogger...

...and I'm sorry!  I've been preoccupied and unable to devote any much deserved time to the ole' blog.

I do hope to make amends, dear readers, and post something new and exciting soon.

Hang with me for another week, and I'll get my act together- PROMISE!


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