Tuesday, December 13, 2011


I must admit, I am worried about Cate.

She is not crawling yet. Nor is she pulling herself up on furniture and such.

At 9 months, she should be doing these things. The baby books say so. Even the doctor was concerned yesterday that she's not doing either yet. Dr. M expected her to be "cruising", which is pulling herself up and taking a few steps while holding on to furniture.

She shows no desire to move her feet while standing.

She will get up on all fours, but never moves. She just lays back down.

I wasn't that worried until we went to the doctor yesterday, and she was concerned. Then today, on Face.book, someone posted about how her 9-months tomorrow baby took her first step today. Her daughter is walking, and Cate's not even crawling yet?

She's met most other milestones. She knows her name, understands "no", and repeats sounds all the time. She can't pick things up with just a finger and thumb, she's still fisting everything, but I think part of that was us not giving her things she could pick up like that. I am trying to remedy that.

I don't know what to do about the crawling/standing though. I know all babies crawl/stand/walk at different times, but it seems like she's really behind.

Also, just FYI, she's in the 50th percentile for weight, but off the charts in length. Like, past 99th. She's super long. No teeth yet. Talks and sings constantly. Still adores the dogs. And is absolutely precious.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Pregnant Women are Smug

Seriously, couldn't resist. Hilarious

Friday, November 11, 2011

genetics suck

I've been turned down as an egg donor for the clinic/company I chose. Because my dad and granddad both died of heart attacks, I apparently don't qualify, at least according to the woman who emailed me. She said that FDA regulations don't allow that many instances of heart disease/heart attacks in my immediate family.

I will say that: a) I didn't know grandparents were immediate family and b) I couldn't find anything about that in the FDA donor regulations that I spent over an hour reading last night.

I will also say that I am pretty upset about this. Wondering if it's worth it to try another place, or accept that I have crappy genes that no one would want anyway.

Saturday, October 29, 2011

A Celebration of Babies

Today, my old RE's office hosted a Celebration of Babies. They invited all of the patients who they helped become parents.

It was so cool. It wasn't a huge deal. Just a tent in the parking lot of the office. Balloons, face painting, and cupcakes for the kids, and pictures with Dr. G. A couple of hours hanging out outside in the nice weather, chatting with other parents.

Jeff and I agreed it was unlike any party we've ever been to. Usually, we at least know someone. Here, we were all strangers, but with something in common. It's not like the RE's office invites lots of chatting and new friends. So it was neat to talk to people who are every bit as grateful for their children as we are for Cate. Singleton babies like Cate were definitely the minority, but what can you expect from a party thrown for former RE patients?

It was awesome. I think Dr. G really liked seeing all the kids, and I know the nurses did. They said they're going to try it every year, and I really hope they do.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Eggs, Toes, and Shout-Outs

First off, I have a few shout-outs go give. Rach and Lindsay both have beautiful babies that you should go oooh and aaaah over if you're up for it. Seriously precious. And Rebekah has an early new arrival!

Foxy and Melissa both had wonderful baby showers for their soon-to-be-here babies!

Cherbear, Michele, Jenni, and Jackie are all either in the middle of their TWW, or about to start a new round of treatment. Go wish them luck.

Finally, go say hello to Auntie A. She just boarded the crazy MFI train, and could probably use some friends and well-wishes.

Now for the toes. Well, toe. I wasn't planning on writing about it, but it's pretty much the only thing on my mind at the moment. I kicked a desk this morning. Not on purpose. I turned in my chair to talk to one of my students, and kicked the edge of a medal desk in doing so. As soon as I did, I reached down and grabbed my toe, cause it HURT, but didn't look at it for like, 3 minutes while I talked to the kids. When I finally let go, my hand was covered in blood. I sliced my little toe open almost an inch. I put a band-aid on it, but it has been bleeding and throbbing all day. Probably doesn't help that I also managed to whack it another 3 times. Oh, it hurts.

Ok, now for the eggs. Egg donation, that is. Way back in August when I did my survey, most women said they went through their RE to find a donor. Unfortunately, all the research I've done and phone calls I've made have pretty much solidified the fact that most REs in the area use donor agencies. So, I researched those and finally sent in a preliminary application to one. They, in turn, send me about a billion questions to answer that are ridiculously hard.

For instance, one is "What does family mean to you?"

Really? What family means to me I can't put in to words, and every time I try, it sounds canned. Also, I have no idea how to describe myself, nor do I particularly think I have any talents or achievements to share. And, one of the questions asked for future career goals. How do I say I am perfectly happy where I am, and have no desire to move up into administration without sounding like a loser-y, lazy bum?

Ohmigosh. It's hard. Unbelievably, the hardest question is "why do you want to be a donor?" That shouldn't be hard. I know exactly why I want to be a donor. She's sleeping in her crib right now. Because everyone should have this. But how do I say that without coming off as crazy???

That's all I have to say.

No....my toe hurts. Now that's all.

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Fall Crafty-ness

Go over to Best and Better Still and see my fall craft. I'd post it on here, but I figure this is easier!

Saturday, October 15, 2011

A Month of Silence

Sorry about the prolonged silence here. I've been reading, commenting when I can, but haven't had time to sit and write.

It's been crazy around here. Jeff caught a stomach bug around Labor Day weekend, then promptly caught mono (oh, the joys of teaching), so has been sick for over a month. For a while there, he couldn't stand for more than a couple minutes without getting light-headed. I even had to go pick him up from work one day. I've had to do everything: house, dogs, and baby. Oh, and work.

Speaking of work, I'm thinking I must have been on crack at some point. I volunteered to be Student Council sponsor, Dodgeball Club sponsor, and Spelling Bee sponsor this year. This is on top of having a special ed inclusion room.

I'm exhausted. My house is disgusting, because just keeping up with the laundry and the dishes (usually Jeff's job) and the dogs is wearing me out. By the time Cate goes to bed, I'm practically asleep.

On top of that, we are broke. Painfully broke. This month's daycare was $1,000, plus our electric and water bills were through the roof, for some reason I have yet to figure out. Add that to the 600+ we spent trying to figure out what the heck was wrong with Jeff before someone decided to test for mono, and we've had a rough month. I feel like a terrible parent, because Cate's only professional pictures have been her newborn ones, and every time I plan on getting them done, that money goes toward something else. At least she gets fed and bathed semi-regularly. (She only gets baths 2-3 times a week b/c of her eczema anyway.)

Sorry this post is so whiny. Wanted you to know that we're still here, even if we're just hanging on.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

A few thoughts...

I had about an hour to myself today. Jeff went to the school to work, and Cate took a nap. It was blissful. I sat on the couch and read. (And because names and storylines from "Game of Thrones" float through my head every time I close my eyes, I started re-reading "The Princess Diaries" for a break.)

I also spend a little time working on recovering our dining room chairs, and I started thinking. (Always dangerous with me). Here are my thoughts:

Every upper elementary and middle school english teacher should introduce three boys (men? guys?) to their students' lives. Their names are Gregor, Percy, and Harry. Those three do more for my reading scores and for getting my kids interested in reading than anyone else. (Maybe I should include their creators too....)

There are 2 incredibly annoying and, I think, offensive commercials running in our area right now. One is about that stupid "Dolphin Tale" movie. It's a preview, and someone says during it "That dolphin is the bravest creature I've ever seen", or something to that effect.

Can I just say, "Courage only counts when you can count." (from Gregor) That stupid dolphin had nothing to do with getting some stupid prothestic tail and relearning how to swim. It's not like it was given the option to say "hey, thanks, but no. I'm good." Ridiculous.

The other commercial is a USPS commercial in which some guy says "I can't think of anything worse than having to stand in line at the post office."

Really? You can't think of ANYTHING worse than standing in line?!?! Cause I can think of a few hundred things just off the top of my head, and probably thousands if you give me about an hour.

Also, I was thinking about my favorite fictional literary couples. I came up with my top three. They are:
Elizabeth Bennett and Mr. Darcy- Pride and Prejudice
Anne Shirley and Gilbert Blythe- Anne of Green Gables
Mia Thermompolis and Michael Moscovitz- The Princess Diaries*

*I came up with this list before I started re-reading the series.

I suppose that's it for the evening. I'm off to watch the season finale of True Blood. There better be some Erik butt in this one!

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Hey there

I've been MIA for a while. I underestimated just how much harder it would be to go back to work this year. Last year, I had family taking care of Cate, and I didn't realize just how much that helped. This year she's at a day care. It makes it a lot harder. Add that to the general exhaustion and ridiculous amounts of paper work and little things that come with starting the school year, and it's no wonder I've gone to bed at 8:30 almost every night.

My class is wonderful this year. It's a big change for me, because this is my first year to have special ed inclusion. The biggest change is that I literally have no time to sit down while the kids are working, so I've been trying to get everything (copies, lesson plans, parent emails, grades, etc.) done in the hour after the kids leave and before I pick up Cate. Needless to say, that's not really working. Thankfully, I have an incredible aide who will sit and grade papers when there's nothing else to do. She even took some home to grade over the long weekend for me.

I've been sitting here staring at the computer screen with my hands in my lap for the last five minutes, trying to figure out what else I want to say. There's a lot I would like to talk about, I just don't think it's all for this post. I just wanted to let you know that I'm still here, still chugging along.

Monday, August 15, 2011

It's time

Hey hey! There is officially a post over at my new blog! Head over and read it, if you want. At least head over to check out the name and the quote I got it from. Still super-proud of that!!

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Just can't hide it!

I must say, I'm pretty pleased with myself. Last night, I came up with the perfect name for my new baby-centered blog, and I managed to remember it today! It comes from my favorite quote from my favorite book series Anne of Green Gables. I am rather excited. I'm working on it, but it probably won't be ready for another week or so. I feel like doing a little dance.

I'll let everyone know when it's up and running. Family, you get to stop reading this one when it is. Bloggy friends, you're welcome to read both, or avoid the baby blog, or stop reading me altogether if you need to. I'll still be posting here, especially when I get this egg donor business started.

I'm so excited!

Sunday, August 7, 2011


My favorite time of day is from about 7:30 to 8:30 pm. That's Cate's bedtime. It's when she and I say goodnight to Daddy and go upstairs. We sit in the glider, have one last bottle, and rock. Sometimes I read her a story. Sometimes I sing to her. Sometimes she goes straight to bed. But I love that time. I love holding her when there are no distractions. No phone, no dogs, no TV. Just us.

When she dozes off, I like to sit and imagine what her room will look like in 5, 10, and 15 years. Right now, it feels like it's just as much my room as hers. I put everything away, she's hardly in there without me (when she's awake). Right now, it's our room. But I like to think about what it will be like as she takes over. I like to think about toys on the floor, books on the shelf, posters on the wall. It makes me smile.

Monday, July 25, 2011

Summer Camp, Days 23, 24, and 25

Day 23 – What are your favorite activities to do on-line? Is there more to do beyond blogging?

My favorite thing to do online is play games. Specifically: crossword puzzles, nonograms, logic puzzles, and my new favorite KenKen. If you like brain teasers or sudoku, you'd like nonograms and kenken.

Day 24 – What is your dream date? Have you ever dated anyone you met from the internet?

"April 27. Because it's not too hot, and it's not too cold..." If you get that, you're a dork, just like me. And no, I've never dated anyone I met from the internet.

Day 25 – What did you want to be when you grew up? Why and/or how did that change over time?

At some point in time, I wanted to be an astronaut, a zookeeper, a vet, and a teacher. I'm not a vet because I couldn't handle having to put animals to sleep, I'm not a zookeeper because I wouldn't want to clean out the cages, and I'm not smart enough to be an astronaut. In college I wanted to be a museum curator, and would still love it, but unfortunately most curator pay would not cover the amount of $ I would spend on the master's degree in museum studies.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Summer Camp, Day 21 (and a random side note)

Day 21- What names would you NEVER name a child or pet? What name do you wish you had been named? Do you like the name of your blog?

Ok, first off, there are things I would name a pet that I would NEVER name a child. So, really, that's two questions. And since all my pets are named after Harry Potter characters, a lot of names don't qualify. :)

Being a teacher, lots of names get ruined for me because of the kids. For instance, I would never name a kid Hayden, John, or Brady. McKenna, Mackenzie, or McKayla. Victor. Avery. Kendall. And I've always always ALWAYS hated the name Kiefer.

I love my name, but, my mom wanted to name me Anjuli instead of Julie. My dad apparently hated the name though, and gave my mom a choice between Julie and Angela. I love being a Julie, but sometimes I wish my name were Anjuli. I like it. I use Anjuli a lot for emails and such.

The name of my blog is ok. It makes sense to me, even if it does to no one else.

Speaking of blog names, I have two finalists for my more Cate-centered blog. "Love, Honor, and Constant Vigilance" and "Chew Toys and Teething Rings". Which one do you like?

Random Side Note: I'm trying to stop pumping, and I went 48 hours before I realized that I really really had to pump. (Seriously, my boobs were rock hard.) Anyway, I did, and the milk that I pumped was green. Not like, grass green, but like mint ice cream green. It was very strange. I looked it up though, and apparently, it's normal.

Don't forget to tell me which blog name you like!

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Summer Camp, Days 19 and 20

If you're here from the LFCA click here, or scroll down. Thanks for your help!

Day 19 – How do you (and your partner if applicable) feel about PDA? Does your husband/wife/partner know that you blog and if so are they involved?

I'm wondering if the only definition I know of PDA (public display of affection) is not the one in this question, since I don't understand how it relates to Jeff knowing I blog. But you all know he knows I write a blog, and he writes one too.

Day 20 – What is the kindest thing anyone has ever done for you? Did you repay the kindness? Did you blog about it?

I can think of 2 things that really stand out, and both of them have been in the last year. The first was Foxy sending a baby bonnet and a sprig of lavendar for Cate. It meant so much to me that an almost stranger who I know only through the internet would take the time so send such a heartfelt gift. And Foxy, she's big enough for it now, so you can expect some pictures!

The other thing will seem silly to you, but it meant a lot to me. The day I went back to work after my maternity leave, my co-worker C brought me a Diet DP. I know, that's small, but she took the time to bring me my favorite drink on the morning she knew I'd be having a rough time.

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Summer Camp, Days 17 and 18

If you're here from the LFCA about donor eggs, click here, or scroll down. And thanks for your input!

Day 17 – What is your favorite thing about the weekend? Do you take a break from blogs or is this when you catch up?

It used to be that my favorite thing about the weekend was that Jeff and I had time to go garage sale-ing, go out to eat, sleep in, and goof off. Now that it's summer, we have a hard time figuring out what day of the week it is, so weekends don't make too much difference. I know that when school starts up again, my favorite thing about the weekend will be that I get to spend all day with Cate, instead of just a few hours.

I catch up on blogs whenever I have time, not necessarily on the weekends.

Day 18 – How do you feel about astrology? What’s your sign, baby, and do you think it matches your personality?

I really don't ever give much thought to astrology. My sign is Aquarius, and I actually had to do a bit of research before I could decide if it matched my personality, which should tell you how I feel about it.

So far, I've found that Aquarius is tempermental, impatient, makes friends easily, is a leader, struggles to pay attention to detail, and wants to make the world a better place. I freely admit I'm impatient and tempermental. Attention to deal is definitely missing in my world, and I would like to make the world a better place, but of course thinking about it is usually as far as I get. However, I actively try not to be a leader. I don't have the confidence required to lead, and I don't make friends easily. I prefer to listen rather than talk (a big change from when I was a kid) when I meet strangers, and I think I come across as snobby. I swear I'm not though.

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Summer Camp, Days 14, 15, and 16

Day 14 – How do you typically dress to run errands? Do you think bloggers dress better or worse than “regular people”?

I wear a t-shirt and jeans or shorts pretty much all the time. When I was pregnant, I lived in sweat pants at home, but I would change them before leaving the house. I have standards and all.

I can't honestly say I've ever thought about how bloggers dress.

Day 15 – What was your college experience like? Were you involved in any clubs, groups, etc? If you did not go to college what was your experience like after high school?

I liked college. I had fun. My freshman year, I joined a sorority, but I didn't really have the time or money for it. I worked full time all four years of college, 3 of them as a manager at a Burger King. Still, I loved college.

Day 16 – How many friends of yours blog/tweet/actively facebook? Has social media helped or hurt your friendships?

I don't have any close friends who are active in any of that. Facebook has been nice though. It helps me keep in touch with my friends who are scattered across the nation.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Egg Donation

I've wanted to donate eggs ever since Jeff and I had to pick out donor sperm. Now that we have a baby and our IF treatments are over with (for now?), it's been on my mind more and more.

I started doing research on it today. I'm glad I did, since most companies have an age cut-off of 29. That leaves me about a year and a half.

However, there are almost a dozen local companies right here in DFW, and who knows how many nation-wide. So, I'm looking for women who have used donor eggs or donated eggs. I want their input on who they used and why. I want to be sure I pick a company that doesn't bankrupt the prosepective parents.

If they used donor eggs, I also want to know if they preferred open or anonymous donations. Some centers I've found require meetings before hand, and some are strictly anonymous. I don't think I care either way, but I'd like to know what those using donor eggs look for.

Thanks for your help!

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Summer Camp, Days 10,11,12, and 13

Day 10 – Share your favorite recipe (or two) (see! You CAN be a food blogger!)

I'm not sure I've enabled you to fully grasp what a terrible cook I am. I have no recipes to share, but you if have one to share with me that is EASY to make (less than 3 steps), I'll try it and let you know how it goes!

Day 11 – How are you different from your parents? How are you the same? Do your parents and/or family know that you write on-line?

Hmm...I'm having trouble thinking of how I'm different from my parents. I have my dad's sense of humor. I'm pretty much my mother. Seriously, she about fell over laughing the other day when I confessed that I actually licked my thumb to clean something off Cate's face. I don't look a thing like my mom, but if you look at pictures of her when she was my age, we could be twins. In fact, check this business out:

This is a picture of me, my mom, my grandma, and my great-grandma. My mom posted this on Facebook on Mother's Day, and everyone thought it was her, me, and Cate. My, oh my.

Most of the fam knows I have a blog, and they know they have to stop reading it soon. They get their own.

Day 12 – Tell us about the first time you got drunk or tipsy (as far as you can remember…) Do you ever stop yourself from telling too much when you write on-line or do you think you tell too much?

You know, I hate to say it, but I'm going to skip this question. I don't think anyone I work with/for would ever read this blog, but you never know. If you're just dying to hear the answer to this question, feel free to email me. I'll tell you.

Day 13 – Tell us about the best job you ever had, and the worst. Do you ever blog or read blogs while at work? Do you ever quote or reference blogs while at work?

Love this question. While teaching is certainly the best paying job I've ever had (sad), the most fun I've ever had at a job was when I worked as a server for Studio Movie Grill. If you're not familiar with it, it's a theatre that serves actual food. Tables, bar, full menu, the works. I had so much fun working there. I only did so for 6 months while I was student teaching, but it was awesome. (The tips were lousy.) I got to work with great people, see all the movies we had, and serve food, which I really enjoyed.

The worst job I ever had was the one right before Studio. I worked for an inventory counting service. It was the worst. Job. Ever. Never have I been so bored. It was completely mindless, counting shirts and shoes and bread and peanut butter and cell phone parts. Ugh. Terrible. I dreaded it every day. I only did it for a month. They wanted to promote me, but I took the lower paying server job instead. Fantastic choice!

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Summer Camp days 7,8, and 9

Day 7 – What’s your favorite thing to eat for breakfast, lunch and dinner? Do you read food blogs or would you ever consider writing one?

My favorite thing to eat for breakfast is cereal. It really doesn't matter what kind. My favorite cereals seem to be everyone else's least favorites, because they stop getting made. (Frosted Flakes had a cinnamon version for a while. Best. Cereal. Ever.) I could eat Mexican food every day. I just can't get enough.

I would never write a food blog. I'm too much of a picky eater. It'd all be about potatoes!

Day 8 – If you had to teach something, what would you teach? (If you DO teach, when did you discover your love for teaching/the subject?) Do you think blogs can play a role in education?

Well, I do teach. 4th grade. I teach spelling, math, reading, writing, grammar, social studies, and science. I also unofficially teach manners, respect, and sarcasm. I would really like to teach middle school or high school English or History, but I look too young to teach high school, and I'm too nice (read: weak) to teach middle.

I think blogs can be a great tool in education, if they're used effectively. In fact, I plan on having a class blog this year that the students will write and maintain. It's going to have newsletters, book reviews, and other good stuff I haven't thought of yet.

Day 9 – What is the most important lesson you learned from your own mother (or other primary caretaker)? What do you imagine the name of your Grandmother’s blog would be and what would she write about?

The most important lesson I've learned from my mother is kind of hard to put into words. I suppose it's that we are stronger than we look. My mom lost her husband and her mother within 15 months of each other. One was expected, one was not. And yet, 13 years later, she still manages to get up in the morning. Not only that, but she lives. I can only hope to be that strong.

I have no idea what my Grandmother's blog would be. Either of my grandmothers. I would assume that Grandma would read every cross-stitching blog out there. And Granny would read mine. She would probably leave comments on every post. They were amazing women. I just can't imagine them writing blogs.

Monday, July 11, 2011

Summer Camp, Days 4,5,and 6

Day 4 – What has most surprised you about being an adult? What have you learned about yourself through blogging?

Sadly enough, I think the thing that has most surprised me about being an adult is underwhelming it is. I forget that I am 27 years old. I don't feel that old. I feel like I should be a better, more well-rounded person at 27. While I realize that I have definitely grown and matured since my teenage years, I don't feel like an adult.

I'm laughing at myself for the second part of this question. I'm sitting here telling you I've grown and matured, but this blog has shown me that I'm still moody, whiny, and melodramatic. Haha.

Day 5 -What do you prefer to do on your birthday?

I really don't care. My birthday is in February, which limits choices a lot, but really, my birthday is not that big a deal to me. Not sure why.

Day 6 – When was the last time you tried something new? What was it and what was the result? Have you ever done something just so that you could blog about it?

I tried a new resturaunt yesterday. It was called Ramen Republic, and quite frankly, it was a little bland. But, in doing so, we found out that one of my favorite pizza places is opening up across the street. Baked Potato Pizza, here I come! This past week I also tried on some new (to me) clothes, tried to make a grocery list with coupons, and tried a new Mexican food place. (Also slightly bland.) I tried a new formula for Cate (awful), tried out swimming with Cate, and tried out sleeping with her upstairs. I try new stuff all the time. Usually food. But still.

Summer Camp, Days 1,2, and 3

Day One: Provide a photo or sketch or dramatic rendering of the space where you normally blog.

Well, this is it. Yes, I sit in that incredibly hard antique wooden chair. And yes, that is a cup of moldy Diet DP. It's been there for about a month. This picture has inspired me to get rid of it. (Finally!) I like being able to look out the window while I'm on the computer, and when Cate is with me, she likes it too. She can't get enough of leaves.

Day Two: What were you like in high school? What extracurricular activities, if any, did you take part in during high school? Did you consider yourself a writer?

Ugh. I was miserable in high school. I was an outsider. I wanted so badly to be a part of something, but I never really was. I took drama every year, but only had one line in one play ever. I played clarinet in the band, and made first chair my senior year, right before I moved. I was moody, angsty, and melodramatic. I had a grudge against the world because my dad had died. I worshiped a boy who didn't have the time for me. I was convinced I had no friends, but looking back, I see that I had tons, many of whom hung out with people they didn't like, because I brought them together. I was luckier than I thought.

I wanted to be a writer in high school. I didn't have time for journalism or the creative writing team, but I was (and still am) forever starting stories I'll never finish. I have a head-full of stories and books and epics in my head, but no patience to write them down. Oh well.

Day Three: What are your guilty pleasures?

Ooooh, I like this question. Let's see. I think of guilty pleasures as things I actually feel a bit guilty about...like the movie "Overboard". I realize it's stupid, but I still watch it every time it comes on TV.

Pedicures. I would get one every day if I could, but I've never walked away from one feeling ok about the money I just spent.

Hannah Montana. Enough said.

Make-up and nail polish. I l.o.v.e. buying this stuff, but I hardly ever use it. Doesn't stop me from wandering the cosmetic aisle every time I go to the store by myself.

Earrings. I have 200+ pairs of earrings. I like quirky ones like my squirrels and my cassette tape earrings, and I like big dangly flashy ones. I like them all. I should really stop buying them though!

Haircuts. Getting my hair cut is one of my favorite things ever. I love everything about it. I love the smell of the hair salon, the sound of scissors cutting my hair, the time it takes. Really, I love anything that has to do with my hair, except the wind.

And, just for fun: a picture of Cate and her buddy Kreacher.

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Summer Camp, Mini-Updates, and a Question

I've decided to participate in Calliope's Blog Summer Camp! I'm a bit behind, so I'll be doing a couple days' worth at a time till I catch up. I'm excited about this. If you haven't checked it out, head on over. It looks like a lot of fun!

Some mini-updates:
We took Cate to Kansas for the first time. We thought we would have to stop overnight, but Cate turned out to be a great road trip rider and slept the whole way, so we made it in a day. She was amazingly good natured about meeting so many new people and getting passed around. Then again, she is amazing. :)

She also changed her own bedtime. She was going to sleep between 9 and 11, depending on the day. For the past week, she's gone to sleep at 8. Her doing, not ours. It's awesome though, since that's what time she was going to have to go to bed when school starts again.

And the Question:
What should I name my new blog? I'm planning on starting a new one for the family that is Cate-centered. I'm going to very politely ask everyone I'm related to to stop reading this blog once the new one is up. No offense to them, but I find myself censoring things I would like to say. And sometimes, I find myself censoring baby-related stuff here. I figure two seperate blogs is the way to go. But I cannot think of a good name. So far, all I've come up with is "The Wild and Wacky Winkler World" which I know is absolutely terrible, and "Love, Honor, and Constant Vigilance" which Jeff and I like to say is our family motto, but really it's just one of our weird jokes. So help me out here!

Sunday, June 26, 2011

What a Day

Today, I think Cate woke up on the wrong side of the bed. She had a rough day. She didn't want to eat, she didn't want her pacifier, she didn't want her thumb. She didn't want to sit in her bouncy chair, sit in her swing, lay on her play mat, or take a nap. She wanted to be held. All. Day.

Please don't misunderstand me. I have no problem holding her. But to hold a 14 pound baby all day is a little exhausting. Especially when that 14 pound baby is a wiggle worm who would NOT sit still for more than 2 minutes at a time. And when that 14 pound wiggle worm was sleepy and fussy and refusing to sleep.

Not that it was all bad, or really even bad at all. She woke up smiling instead of crying (a new development), laughed when I tickled her, smiled everytime I talked to her, and sat and "talked" to Jeff for a good 20 minutes today. She blew bubbles and chewed on her giraffe lovie. So maybe she didn't have a rough day. Except for the wanting to be held all day part.

In other news, I decided to stop pumping, then changed my mind, then changed it again, then changed it again. So I'm still pumping. For now. :)
I have a whole post coming (when I find time! This is the first time I've had more than 5 minutes to myself since school got out) about where Cate is sleeping and my family's attitude about it.
We're gearing up to take Cate to Kansas next weekend, and I am really really dreading it. Not the Kansas part, but the drive up there. That's a super long drive for Cate to be in a car seat, and for us to worry about her. I am super stressed over it.
I am slightly obsessed with the show Extreme Couponing on TLC. More on this later too.

I'm still reading blogs when I can, but still can't comment. Working on that in my spare time. (HA!)

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

How do they do it?

I am not a worrier. I don't stress out about anything. I am a very laid-back person. I have a "ehh, whatever" attitude, which has gotten me in trouble before.

Someone forgot to tell my new parent-self that. I worry contstantly. Right now, Cate and Jeff are both asleep downstairs, but that doesn't stop me from wanting to run down there every ten minutes to make sure she's still breathing. If she's asleep and I'm not, you better believe I'm worried.

I have also lost the ability to enjoy such shows as Law and Order, NCIS, and Dexter. No matter how hard I try to avoid it, my mind envisions my family in the same situations. Cate kidnapped, Cate missing...you get the idea. Despite the fact that I know they're just TV shows. They scare me, and just add to my ever-growing list of anxieties.

How do parents do it? How do they ever relax enough to let their kid go to Grandma's for the night, or a sleepover, or a field trip? How will I, when I can't even let mine sleep without worrying?

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

In other news....

Just a few updates and random bits from my life...

  • I made Cate laugh today. Not just once, but a couple times. It's the first time she's laughed. I think I'm more proud of this than I was of anything else in my life.

  • Speaking of pride, our standardized test results came in. In math and writing, exactly 1/2 my class got a commended score (meaning they missed less than 3 questions for each test) and in reading, I had 19 out of 22 commended. I'm pretty proud of that.

  • I'm more proud of making Cate laugh! :)

  • It's hot here. 100 degrees today. I. Love. It. Seriously. :)

  • One of my co-workers asked when I was going to try for number two. (Cause, you know, Cate's 12 weeks...it's time.) I told her it would be when we could afford it. She goes on to lecture me about how diapers and formula aren't THAT expensive. I stopped her mid-sentence and said "M. We have to save to get pregnant before we can worry about affording diapers." She was like "oh yeah."

  • There are 2 days of school left! It's glorified babysitting at this point. So ready to be done.

  • Did I mention I made Cate laugh?

Saturday, June 4, 2011


Blogger isn't letting me comment, like it's doing to so many other people. So, I'm writing a quick post instead. I'd like to mention everyone, but I think I only have 2 minutes, tops, before Cate wakes up.

Les, I'm so glad H is getting to stay with you a bit longer. I hope her stay continues! And I'm super jealous that you are done with school! We still have a week.

Christine, Piper is absolutely beautiful. Congratulations! And I *love* her name!

Kir, I loved your story about Jacob and Captain Pipe. It made me cry. :)

That's it! I hear crying. Love to you all!

Friday, May 27, 2011


One of my teammates is pregnant. As in, she peed on a stick this morning and got a plus.

This is number 2 for her. Number 1 was an unexpected surprise.

She's been trying for exactly one month.


I told her the other day that there would be a small part of me that would hate her if she got pregnant this month. She said she understood.

There is a small part of me that hates her.

And a large part of me that is so jealous, it makes me cry. How nice would it be to decide "hey, it's time for number 2. Let's to this." I keep thinking that if/when Jeff and I go for number 2, it's going to be a long drawn out process of finding the money, deciding if we want the same doctor or try to find a new one, picking a new donor since the one we used is sold out, doctor visits, medicine, OPKs, more money, more doctor visits, more stress.

I'm happy for her. I think it's funny that she went from "never having more children, ever" at the beginning of my pregnancy to actively trying by the time I got back from maternity leave. I'm excited that there will be another child on the team that's close to Cate's age.

But mostly I'm jealous.

Thursday, May 26, 2011


I think we need to put Dobby to sleep.

Jeff and our dog trainer don't think he needs to be put down yet. They think with a new family, he can live a long and happy life.

I think it would be cruel to do that. Both to Dobby and the new family. In order to find a place where he could thrive, he would literally need no kids, no pets, one person, no electronics, nothing that makes weird noises, and a big yard. I guess I could give him to a caveman.

The Weim rescue won't take him. Not without a vet check and a thyroid test. We can't take him to the vet because he tried to bite everyone in the building last time.

I can't send him to the animal shelter. With his list of issues, he shouldn't be adoptable. The people who would take him would probably use him for dog fights or something. If no one did adopt him, they would put him down. I can't stand the idea of Dobby spending his last days thinking I abandonded him.

We can't keep him though. He snapped at me the other day. If he snaps at me, the person he trusts the most, what will he do to someone else?

What will he do to Cate?

He already spends his evenings staring at Cate. Like the washing machine and the TV, she makes noise and moves, so she's worthy of his obsession. It terrifies me, and I spend every evening beyond stressed.

I'm not sure a vet will do this though. Technically, he's never bitten anyone. Without seeing him in action, I don't think a vet would believe the laundry list of problems he has.

Sadly enough, this is the first thing on my to-do list once school is out. Maybe sooner.

Friday, May 20, 2011

This Kid

I promised pictures of our beautiful daughter ages ago. So here they are! We'll start with a picture of Cate a few hours old.

Here she is a few minutes after being home. The dress she's in is the one I wore home from the hospital. I love this picture because she looks so small compared to now.

This is Cate laying next to my very old teddy bear.

A few days old. :)

Sleepy baby.

Holding her head up. She looked so confused.

One of my favorite pictures. She loooooves bathtime.

She's not terribly fond of the giant flowers, but they're so cute on her.

She gets this furtive look on her face, like she's plotting something. Love it.

Finally caught a smile on camera. I really had to work for it. Usually when I try to get one, she sticks her hand in her mouth. I think she does it on purpose.

I so love this kid. I think she's amazing. She is the most beautiful child ever. She only cries when she's super hungry. It cracks me up because she's started sticking out her bottom lip in the classic pout when she does. She also says "waaa" when she cries, which always makes me want to go "waaa" back at her. She has a fake cry she uses when she doesn't want to be alone. She is probably spoiled. Most nights (almost all) she sleeps through the night. She wakes up when she hears us up and moving around, which means during the week she wakes up between 5 and 6 and on the weekend she sleeps till 8. She's cool like that. Her favorite song is "Dancing Queen". I was watching Glee last week and when they sang that song, she turned and looked at the TV with a smile on her face. I sang it to her again after it was over, and she grinned at me the whole time. She loves it every time I sing it. (FYI, I despise AB.BA, but I'll sing it for her.) I could seriously go on and on, but I'll stop.

Monday, May 16, 2011


Something was said to me this weekend that was the most hurtful thing anyone has ever said to me.

It physically hurts me. I feel like there is a hole in my chest, like I was punched. The words hurt that much.

I won't mention who said them or what they were, but they hurt.

Now I feel like I'm second-guessing everything I say or do. I'm afraid to talk, but I'm afraid not to. I'm afraid I'll say the wrong thing.

I know this isn't making much sense. I'm sorry.

I think I need an anti-depressant.

Friday, May 6, 2011

My Mom

I'm not sure if I've ever mentioned this before, but my mom is amazing. I've always thought so, but having Cate really brought it home for me.

I really can't imagine what would have happened that first week home from the hospital without her. I think I might have just sat on the couch and cried.

There's so much I want to say about her, but I'd fill up the internet, I think.

My mom is strong and smart and beautiful, and I am so grateful she's my mom. I hope I'm just like her when I grow up.

Mom, if you're reading this, Happy Mother's Day, and I love you.

Monday, May 2, 2011

Heigh Ho, Heigh ho...

Today was my first day back to work.

Boy, was it hard.

My mom took the day off to watch Cate, since my scheduled babysitter (my little brother) had an interview today. (He just graduated with a Master's in mechanical engineering.)

I was a basket case. I had to force myself to leave, and still wound up leaving 15 minutes later than usual. Jeff stopped me at the door and asked if I was going to be all right, which just made me tear up.

I had tears in my eyes before I got out of the driveway. I spent the entire 30-minute drive to work taking deep breaths to keep from bawling. I managed to make it all the way to my classroom and actually was getting a little bit done when one of my team members walked in and asked how I was. I tried smiling at her, and wound up crying instead.

It seemed like everyone at the school said "Hey, welcome back. How you holding up?"

Everytime someone asked me that, I wanted to cry. I'd have been much better off if no one talked to me.

Luckily, my class was awesome. They said they really missed me, and I could tell they were really working hard to make sure I was having a good day. It did get easier to be away from Cate as the day went on, but I know tomorrow is going to be just as hard. Mostly because, as much as I love my little brother, leaving Cate with him is not the same as leaving her with my mom. He's going to get a text from me every 15 minutes.

27 more days.

Saturday, April 30, 2011

Debbie Downer

Pardon the "Debbie Downer" attitude, but this is a list of things that have happened in the last month:

  • Toliet broke.

  • Broken toliet flooded master bathroom, closet, guest bathroom, laundry room, and stair landing.

  • Soap dish falls off the wall of the shower, rendering shower unusable until it's put back on and grouted/resealed, etc.

  • We lose 2 boards in our fence, leaving a big gaping hole that the dogs fit through.

  • Upstairs AC dies.

  • Downstairs AC dies.

  • Toliet in half-bathroom starts leaking.

  • Battery in my car dies.

  • Hard drive on our main computer dies due to overheating (cause of the AC).

  • Jeff's pickup loses part of the tailgate, and a cover on the inside that helps seal the doors.

  • We recieve a hospital bill for $1,000 more than we were expecting.

  • I break the towel bar in the bathroom.*

I realize that it could be a million times worse, that there are people everywhere whose problems are much more serious than ours. I realize that we are incredibly lucky to have each other and our health.

But seriously!?

*I also realize that a towel bar isn't that big a deal, but on top of everything else it's just silly.

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

The Husband

He posted a blog again (finally).

Go read it. It's a Bust a Myth post.

It's good.

I love him.


Monday, April 25, 2011

Bust a Myth: Infertility is a Private Matter

Infertility is a Private Matter, Right?

A couple weeks ago
my husband showed off
pictures of our daughter
at work.
One of his coworkers
(insensitive cow)
"Wow. She doesn't look
a thing like you.
Are you sure she's yours?"

My husband is not
the type of person
to suffer idiots.
He said:
"No. She's not mine,
genetically speaking.
We used donor sperm."

The cow...
excuse me,
was appalled.
Not because she had made
such a serious social blunder,
in saying something so rude,
but because my husband
so openly talked about
such a private matter.

After all,
Infertility is a private matter.

Infertility shouldn't be a private matter. The more we talk about it, the more coverage, knowledge, and support we have. So talk about it.

And yes, it's a true story.

It's National Infertility Awareness Week. Infertility affects 1 out of every 8 couples... like me. Find out how you can participate and provide support to 7.3 million people living with this disease: www.resolve.org/takecharge. This post is part of the Bust a Myth Bloggers Unite project.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Not What I Expected

First off, I'd just like to say that my AC is out...and it was 95 here today. Suuucks.

I took Cate to the doctor today. She's had a rash/bumps on her face and head for about 2 weeks, and they just kept getting worse and worse. I finally made an appointment today to see if there was anything we could do for her. (I know what's causing them...she's allergic to laundry detergent, so every time someone holds her that doesn't use the same stuff we do, it gets worse.) Dr. M said not to put ANYTHING on it, and it should clear up. But that isn't the point of this post.

The point is, after the appointment I called my bestie to see if she wanted to get together, since I really didn't want to go back to the hot house. We decided to meet at a mall and do a bit of shopping.

The entire time, I wanted to be at home with Cate and Jeff.

Which led me to think about things being pregnant/giving birth/motherhood has changed in me. Some things I expected, some I didn't.

Bigger boobs.
Stretch marks.

Losing the ability to fall asleep. This one is big for me, since I've always been able to close my eyes and sleep, no matter where or when. Now, I lay in bed for an hour with my mind racing, which is not cool since I usually only get 2 1/2 hours of sleep at a time anyway.

Clenching my teeth. I don't know what's up with this one. I'm sitting here doing it right now. I go around like that all day. I realize I'm doing it and I try to stop, but as soon as I stop thinking about it, I start again. I NEVER used to do this.

My fuse has shortened. Even though my hair no longer grows in red, I still have the temper. Usually I have a long fuse, but lately I seem to be angry all the time. No. That's not accurate. I am not at all angry when I'm at home with Cate during the day. But my tolerance for the cat, dogs, and husband has declined massively. It's not fair to them, but I find myself so angry/frustrated with them all the time. I'm trying very hard to control it, but I'm not sure it's working.

I wanted to be home today instead of shopping. To me, this is the one change that concerns me the most. While I'm not an independent person, I am a person who likes my solitude, and likes to "get away" for a while. And today, all I could think about was how much I wanted to take Cate home to Jeff. In fact, if the thunderstorm/tornado warning hadn't kept me at the mall, I'd have left after 20 minutes. The whole drive home, I was so anxious to be home. I could barely stand it. And I realized it's not normal. At least, not for me.

What do you think? Maybe it's just my hormones still out of whack.

Monday, April 18, 2011

Perfect Moment Monday

My first Perfect Moment Monday, and I have 3 for the day!

1: Getting to sleep four hours straight twice today. (8 hours...I forgot what it felt like.)

2:Getting to eat an entire meal from start to finish without a crying or fussy baby.

3: Holding Cate for the better part of an hour today while she slept, and not being concerned about putting her down to get stuff done. (That was the best one!)

Saturday, April 16, 2011


My little brother is going to buy this onesie for Cate.

Can you see what it says? It says "Made with LOVE (and science)"

Is that not hilarious? I'm so excited about it.

Image courtesy of www.thinkgeek.com

Thursday, April 14, 2011

A Laundry List of Chores

First off, why do they call long lists of things laundry lists?

I have a ton of chores to do. For instance: the floors of my house (mostly wood and tile downstairs) have not been swept in a month. Literally.

There are piles of papers and coupons to sort through.

There are still thank-you cards to write and mail.

There are always bottles in the sink to be washed.

There is an entire bathroom that needs cleaned, since toliet water doesn't count.

There is a giant hole in our fence that allows our dogs to get into the neighbor's yard.

The floorboard of my car is covered with trash.

I am in the process of re-washing all the clothes in my closet that I can wear again, because something about the detergent or softener they were washed in 9 months ago causes dozens of tiny red bumps to break out all over Cate's body.

The laundry is the only thing that gets done. I spend the rest of the day playing with Cate, feeding her, or holding her while she sleeps. Or sleeping myself.

I need a maid. And a butler. And a cook. Any volunteers?

Sunday, April 10, 2011

By the Numbers

One baby with colic. Poor thing. Thankfully, it's not that bad. I hope it stays that way.

Four nights in a row I haven't wanted to kill one or all of the dogs. I think they're finally adjusting!

Ten point 4 pounds: How much Cate weighed at her 1 month appointment. Holy cow!

Two hours a day (roughly) I spend hooked up to the breast pump. Thank goodness it's not all in one sitting!

Twelve is the size of jeans I bought yesterday, and they're a little big! I was one pound away from my pre-pregnancy weight last week. I have no idea what I'm at now, since the Great Toliet Flood of '11 took out my scale.

Three hours of sleep at a time is what I average every night. Cate sleeps about 4 between feedings, which leaves me with about 3. I no longer remember what it feels like to be well-rested.

Ninety'th percentile: Cate's length. 22 1/2 inches, and I think she was wiggling.

Seventeen is the number of gallons of diet dr pepper I would like to consume every day. I'm still on one serving.

I have to say, I think we have an uncommonly good newborn. People keep asking us if we're exhausted getting up every couple hours, if we're sooo tired of the crying and the pooping and the crying. Really, Cate is awesome. She's so laid-back. She sleeps through the dogs barking and Jeff snoring, she hardly ever cries, and even when she does, they're rarely full-blown cries. Except with the colic, but that's recent, and usually only in the evenings. She sleeps about 4 hours at a time at night, and last night she slept 5. She will lay in her bassinet and talk to herself if she's alone, and she even started smiling at us this week. She is absolutely amazing. I could write pages about all the amazing things she does, and how absolutely precious she is, but I won't. At least not today... :) We are so in love.

I'll get you some pictures soon!

Sunday, April 3, 2011

A Dilemma

I would like to talk to you about breastfeeding.

Of course, you don't have to listen...(or read, as the case may be.) I don't mind.

Before Cate was born, I was almost postive I would hate BFing (ha ha...that looks weird) and would not be able to do it. I was prepared for that. I was fully prepared, mentally at least, to feed her formula and go right on with my life.

I was not prepared for how much I would love feeding her.

Nor was I prepared for how much it hurt, in the beginning. By day 2 of Cate's life, my nip.ples were cracked and bleeding. I finally managed to ask the nurse about it, and got some lanolin and some awesome gel pads, which helped a lot. But it still hurt so much that by the time we were home on Monday, I had decided to stop altogether. She had one full day of nothing but formula.

Tuesday, my milk came in. So I completely reversed Monday's decision and decided to try pumping and BFing. Jeff and I went and spent an obscene amount of money on a breat pump (well worth it, BTW). I pumped for a few days, until I felt healed enough to try and nurse Cate again, and gave her formula when it wasn't enough.

Now, here's my issue, and I'm hoping someone can help me with it. I started to BF Cate and then pump when she was done after about a week of just pumping. And I got a clogged and infected milk duct. I let off the BFing b/c of the pain and just pumped until it felt better. Once it did, I started BFing again and pumping after, and again, I got a clogged and infected milk duct.

I don't know why this happens. Much to my surprise, I want to breastfeed my daughter. But I do not want to go through that kind of pain every 3 or 4 days. Right now, I pump and she gets bottles. It works well for me and Jeff, since he can feed her at night while I pump. And it will help when I go back to work. But I want to be able to breastfeed her too. Unfortunately, I'm just too scared.

Does anyone have any suggestions??

Friday, April 1, 2011

My toliet is possessed...

I never thought I'd be thankful for poopy diapers...but I sure am today. Our toliet in the master bathroom has been on the fritz for ages. Sometimes when you flush it, it just keeps running. When that happened, one of us would hear it and go jiggle the handle. Worked every time. Well, today, it decided it didn't like that. I'm not entirely sure what happened. All I know is that Jeff took Cate into our bedroom to change her diaper, then yelled "Julie, get in here!" (Which, BTW, scared the living crap out of me, because of course I thought something was wrong with Cate.) So I go running in there, and there is, no joke, at leat 2 inches of water covering our bathroom floor. The water managed to soak our closet, which is right off the bathroom, and the laundry room and half-bathroom, which are behind our closet, and a bit into the garage, where we have a ton of boxes stored. It also managed to somehow soak the landing at the bottom of the stairs. Still not sure how that happened, since the closet was not wet all the way over there. Who knows. What I do know is that:

  • We currently do not have a toliet that works downstairs.

  • The closet carpet still squishes underfoot.

  • The sound of the wet/dry vac puts Cate to sleep immediately.

  • I am super-grateful for poopy diapers. It would have been much, much worse if we hadn't caught it when we did.

Monday, March 28, 2011


There are soooo many things I want to write about. Aside from how in love we are, the top three things are: breastfeeding, the dogs, and our uncommonly good newborn. Where to start?

How about the dogs, since the dog in question is currently looking over my shoulder as I type. Remember Dobby?

Yes, that's me, pregnant and clothed, sitting in the bathtub with Dobby. Don't ask... :)

Dobby is our 90+ lb, neurotic Weim. Back in February, we hired a well-known dog training company to a) help us get the dogs ready for a baby and b) help us with Dobby's craziness. While the guy has really helped us with a lot of things, Dobby's behavior managed to stump him.

Dobby gets obsessed with things. One day while the trainer was here, he was obsessed with the ceiling fan. I took a video of him running around like crazy, the trainer took it to his meeting the next day, his bosses sent it to to the big kahunas. Bottom line: in the 50,000 dogs the company has trained world wide, they've only seen one dog act like Dobbs. And that dog had to be put down. Brain tumor. We're kind of at a loss with him right now. He needs lots of medical attention we just can't afford at the moment, but we can't put it off much longer.

I bring all this up because, like I said, Dobby gets obsessed with things. He likes to stand and stare for hours, like he's doing right now with the computer screen. And one of his current favorite things to stare at is Cate. I'm sure you can imagine how I like that. Usually he just stares and then runs around the house in circles, then stares again. But he has been known to stick his nose in the fire (literally), and occasionally tries biting the washing machine. I don't want him to think Cate is like the washing machine.

The other two dogs are handling Cate pretty well. Winky pretty much ignores her, and Kreacher just wants to sniff her all the time. I'm pretty sure Kreacher thinks she's a squeaky toy. Her hiccups do make her sound like one. :)

I'll stop here for tonight. Other topics can wait. But before I'm done, would you please check out this gorgeous girl? I'm amazed by her.

It's a bit blurry, but she's totally flipping the camera off. HA!

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Why, Hello There

I have so much to say...

But every time I sit down to write a post, my mind goes blank.

All I can think to say is that I have the most beautiful and perfect daughter in the world.

I'm afraid you're going to get a lot of that.

I would like to tell you about her birth. How she screamed for the first two hours of her life nonstop. How her left collarbone broke during delivery.

I'd like to tell you about her first week home. Her three visits to the pediatrician for jaundice. Her sleeping on her daddy's chest.

I'd like to tell you how I'm doing. How much harder and cooler breastfeeding is than I expected. How much I love being able to type right now with my leg on the compter desk. How much I currently hate how my belly looks.

I would like to tell you what my mental state is like. How there are times when I am completely overwhelmed with amazement. How there are times when I am completely overwhelmed with fear. How last night was the first night since we've been home that I didn't get out of bed every time I woke up to make sure she was still breathing.

There's lots I would like to tell you. For now, please accept these very small bits of info. Hopefully my mind will slow down enough for me to coherently write a post or two or three. For now, know that I am amazed and in love.

Friday, March 11, 2011

Oh Baby. Cate is Here!!!

Welcome the arrival of Catherin Vaughn Winkler. 8 lbs 11 oz. 21.25 inchs.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Today's To-Do List

  • Sleep Late on our last day without a baby. Ha. We were both awake by 5:30, and as it's 6am now, I think this one didn't work. Too worked up, I guess.
  • Eat a big breakfast, since the hospital expects me to not eat again for 8 hours. I'm going to have to call them on this one.
  • Get a pedicure and an eyebrow wax. Maybe the rubbing will set off labor and we won't have to induce tonight.
  • Clear off the clutter on the dining room table, even though we don't eat in there b/c the chairs still don't have seats.
  • Put seats on chairs? (Ha. That one probably won't happen.)
  • Clean up floor in closet, so I can actually put the clothes from the laundry room in the closet. (Pathetic, I know.)
  • Try not to freak out.

It was so weird going to sleep last night, knowing that the next time Jeff and I sleep in that bed, Cate will be in her own, 2 feet away.

It's going to be a really, really long day.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Finally, something definite.

I went to the Stockyards with my 4th graders on Friday. Saturday and Sunday I walked. A lot. (At least it felt like a lot to me!) I went to work yesterday, but decided that mental health-wise, I was done! I took today off (even though I wound up spending an hour and a half there) and took the rest of the week off too.

I went to the doctor today and....I am dialated! Only a centimeter (and a wiggle, as Dr. P put it), but it's finally something! She also took some measurements of the kid, was surprised how much she wiggled the entire time, and was surprised how long her leg is. (She could only get one, with the movement.) She also thinks that Cate is about 8 1/2 pounds, and doesn't want her getting any bigger. So, if she doesn't come on her own tomorrow, we begin induction Thursday night!

It's such a relief to have something definite, a date and a time, even if it's just when I check into the hospital. However, it's awesome (and terrifying) to know that I will have a baby in my arms by Saturday. Mostly terrifying, now that I think about it....

Friday, March 4, 2011

39 Weeks

How far along? 39 Weeks

Total weight gain? 25 lbs

Symptoms? Oh, not much. Just a humongous belly that gets in the way of EVERYTHING I try to do. Oh, and lots of heartburn. As if I could forget that.

Stretch Marks? Lots and lots and lots...and lots.

Sleep? It's shot. I was sleeping pretty good until last week or so. Now I'm not sure why I bother.

Best Moment last week? I'll tell you that at the end of the post. :)

Movement? She has been extremely active. I keep telling her if she's just come out she'd have plenty of room.

Food Cravings? nope

What I miss? Just being able to sit and lay down comfortably. And not peeing when I sneeze.
And being able to sit for more than a minute without some appendage falling asleep.

What I am looking forward to? Her arrival. We're so close.

Milestones? I made it through the TAKS test and the Stockyards field trip.

How is Daddy? As ready as I am. Not sure if it's because he's excited to meet her or just tired of me complaining. :)

My best moment last week was in the car in our driveway with Mom and Jeff. Jeff checked the mail (we only remember to once in a blue moon) and in the huge pile of stuff was a red envelope with our names on it from California. Jeff was stumped, since we don't know anyone out west. It turned out to be the sweetest card and gift ever from Foxy. A card that left me (and the others, I think) crying, and an adorable bonnett made from an antique handkerchief for Cate.

Foxy, thank you so much. I don't really have the words to tell you what it means to me. I'm going to hope you just get it, like you so often do.

I am headed out to do lots of walking tomorrow! Keep your fingers crossed.

Thursday, March 3, 2011


So, I was fully prepared to go in to my appt today and hear something along the lines of "why yes, we will induce this weekend." Instead, I got a call saying that Dr. P had to do a surgery, and did I want to reschedule or see the other doctor. Since I'm headed to the Ft. Worth Stockyards tomorrow with the 4th grade, I elected to see the other doctor.

What a mistake.

She was incredibly rude. She didn't understand why Dr. P would have scheduled an ultrasound to measure the baby, since that would take a whole half an hour. We explained that she was concerned about fluid and size, and the other doc just blew it off. She did agree to check the fluid (it was fine), but that was it.

I am still not dialated at all, she didn't tell me if I was any more effaced. (She also didn't tell us the heartrate, which annoyed me.) I did manage to gain 2 centimeters of belly in a week. (That's up 4 1/2 in 2 weeks, when you're supposed to gain 1 a week.)

I really wish now that I had rescheduled and just done my best to be there. I really wanted to talk with Dr. P about how uncomfortable I am, how I can't even wipe myself on the toliet without doing crazy preggo contortionist acts, how tired and emotional I am...

Oh well. Tomorrow I'm 39 weeks, and I plan on doing a LOT of walking. Bring it on.

Sunday, February 27, 2011

Nursery Pictures!!

Took long enough, I know. My camera's battery died before I could get close-ups of some things, like the ladybugs on the curtains and dresser knobs, and it's way too far to walk downstairs for more batteries, so maybe another day. But, without further ado....

Cate's nursery!

Jeff airbrushed the ferns and the ladybugs, and painted the letters. My mom made the bedding.

I am still not over how much I love the pink
and green damask material. I loved it in October when we found it, and I'm still crazy about it. My mom did an amazing job with the whole thing!

We found the dresser at a re-sale shop and touched up the paint. The knobs are hot pink with little black ladybugs on them, but you can't see it. I have all her headbands and hats stored in the baskets on the wall, along with all the oversized flowers to clip onto the headbands. :)

My mom also made the curtains, which have little pink ladybugs embroidered in the corners. I just realized you can't see the super-cute striped valances she made also. I will have to take another picture for those! Also, the lamp may be my favorite thing about the room, besides the fabric on the crib!

So excited!

This and That and Bad Advice

First off...

That's me, last week. Sitting as comfortably as possible at a local food place. I am whale-like. And I think I'm bigger now...

Any person who ever tells a pregnant woman that she should enjoy her sleep now should be kicked in the shins. HARD. While I will admit that my sleep has not been bad at all, the last week or so that has drastically changed. I would like to ask how I am supposed to enjoy my sleep when I have to pee constantly and every sleeping position is painful? Maybe there's a magic word I'm missing.

Went shopping yesterday with Jeff and my mom. Some lady at the fabric store told Jeff (not me thankfully. I would have just given her a deadpan stare. Jeff managed to laugh it off.) to NEVER teach our baby to walk or talk, because then all she would do is sass us and walk out of the room.

Thank you, Complete Stranger, for taking something we've worked so hard for and are still scared about, and putting a completely negative spin on it. It really helped.

Has everyone seen those "Mompetition" videos? I really felt like I was in one yesterday. We stopped at this adorable little children's boutique that we knew would be too expensive (burp rags 2 for $24!) but had the cutest clothes I've ever seen! Anyway, we were standing there talking to the employee/owner (not sure) and my mom mentioned that I've had a really easy pregnancy, and I was really lucky. Jeff dropped in that it was good, since we had not had an easy time getting pregnant. OH MY GOODNESS. This woman wanted to know exactly what we'd gone through, how many times, why we did IUI. We finally wound up telling her we used DS, which I found uncomfortable. Then, she sat and told us about everything she had to do to get pregnant. While I will giver her this: her road was definitely crappier than ours, it was not a pleasant conversation. What could have been a supportive, encouraging talk between two IFers was a competition over whose journey had been worse. So awkward.

My donut store lady says I have at least 2 weeks before I go into labor. She had a couple reasons why, but her English isn't so hot, so I'm not sure what they were. 2 weeks ago, I'd be praying she is right. At this point, I'm praying the doctor is. I guess Cate will decide.

I am leaving this minute to go put Cate's name on the nursery wall (or at least watch Jeff do it) so we WILL have nursery pictures up today!

Friday, February 25, 2011

38 Weeks

How far along? 38 Weeks

Total weight gain? 24 lbs

Symptoms? Just the never-ending heartburn. And my belly is officially too big for me to see the cup I'm supposed to pee in at the doctor's office. I peed all over my hand at the last appointment. It sucked.

Stretch Marks? Lots and lots and lots

Sleep? Not so great. I wake up ALOT.

Best Moment last week? My first contraction! (isn't it weird that's the best moment?)

Movement? Never get tired of it, even though it has hit the point where most of her stretching is painful to me. I pretty much have to have a hand on my stomach pushing back at her at all times.

Food Cravings? Eh. I totally wanted some lemonade for about 20 minutes today, then I got over it.

What I miss? Just being able to sit and lay down comfortably. And not peeing when I sneeze.

What I am looking forward to? Her arrival. We're so close.

Milestones? The doc telling me any day!

How is Daddy? Over-thinking things....I think he's excited! :)

Thursday, February 24, 2011

A Quick Update

Went to my weekly dr. appointment this afternoon...

She measured my belly (2 1/2 weeks ahead), checked my cervix (nothing), then says "Well, I think if you haven't gone into labor by next week, we'll do an ultrasound just to see how she's doing."

Wait, what?

That's right folks. My doctor would not be surprised if I go into labor within the week.

And there I thought I had another 2 weeks....

Oh dear.

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Advice, por favor!

So, there are a few last-minute baby-related things I would like some advice on, if you have it. First off: baby monitors. I know, we have less than 3 weeks, we probably ought to have one by now. And we do. But it's an under the mattress motion monitor we bought at a garage sale, and I will admit I'm freaking out b/c 1. it won't work in the bassinet downstairs and 2. it only works in the crib, so if she falls asleep in her swing in the living room, I have no monitor. I need one that I can move around the house, preferrably with 2 parent units. Any suggestions?

Secondly: bathtubs. We don't have a baby tub yet, and have no idea what to get. A plain plastic one? The one with all the bells and whistles like a detachable shower head? Please advise. I have no clue.

Thirdly: (is that a word?) formula. I am planning on trying to breastfeed. That being said, I don't have a lot of faith it's going to work, and even if it does, I'll have to stop when I go back to work, because there is no way I can pump at school. Does anyone reccomend a specific formula? (Or bottles, or nipples, or anything related?)

I think that's it. At least for today. Tomorrow I might have another dozen things. You never know!

Saturday, February 19, 2011

37 Weeks

How far along? 37 Weeks

Total weight gain? 24 lbs

Symptoms? Just the never-ending heartburn. And my belly is officially too big for me to see the cup I'm supposed to pee in at the doctor's office. It's awkward.

Stretch Marks? Lots and lots and lots

Sleep? Not too bad. Definitely tired no matter how much I get though.

Best Moment last week? The surprise mini-shower my class gave me during the Valentine's Day party. They had cookies with rattles and baby carriages, some onesies and bibs, the jumper/exersaucer we wanted, and a book the kids wrote on why I'll be a good mom. It was way cool.

Movement? Never get tired of it, even though it has hit the point where most of her stretching is painful to me. I pretty much have to have a hand on my stomach pushing back at her at all times.

Food Cravings? Not really. It's one of those pregnancy symptoms that I was really looking forward to, but I've had such a good pregnancy I'm not going to complain.

What I miss? Just being able to sit and lay down comfortably.

What I am looking forward to? Her arrival. We're so close.

Milestones? I am officially full term!

How is Daddy? I think he's getting stressed. Nerves, probably.

In the next few days, I'll have nursery pictures up!

Friday, February 11, 2011

36 Weeks

How far along? 36 Weeks

Total weight gain? 23 lbs

Symptoms? Just the never-ending heartburn. Can't complain too much.

Stretch Marks? Lots and lots and lots

Sleep? I actually think I've been sleeping better this past week or so. Maybe I'm just so tired I don't remember waking up!

Best Moment last week? Finishing our childbirth class. Terrifying, and I'm glad it's out of the way.

Movement? Never get tired of it.

Food Cravings? Not terribly. I crave water in the evenings, but don't drink it after 3 or 4 pm, cause it gives me hearburn. Ridiculous, I know.

What I miss? being able to lean forward. That's out.

What I am looking forward to? Finishing the d*** nursery! Seriously, I'm starting to get worried. It's all cosmetic stuff, but still.

Milestones? Officially less than a month left!

How is Daddy? Helpful. He lets me sit when the dogs need in or out, gets things for me, and hauled butt back from Austin yesterday to make it to childbirth class.

Friday, February 4, 2011

35 Weeks

Jeff and I are on day 4 of our six-day weekend. No, it wasn't planned. We're on our (amazingly) 4th snow day of the week! The first three probably should have been defined as ice days, but today it's hard to believe there's at least an inch of ice under all the pretty snow.

I woke up yesterday with a double ear infection. I haven't felt pain like that in a long time. Most of yesterday was spent braving the ice for a doctor appointment and then picking up the prescription. And being in pain. Then last night, my mother-in-law suggested some OTC stuff they have to numb the pain. So we braved the ice again to go get some. It paired with the antibiotic helped, because finally about 2 last night they both stopped hurting. My right ear is still completely stopped up, I can't hear a thing out of it. But no pain.

Also, today is my birthday. I'm 27!

How far along? 35 Weeks

Total weight gain? I forgot to weigh myself this morning, but when I did on Wednesday, I was at 21 lbs.

Symptoms? Heartburn. Overwhelming sense of fear....oh wait. That's probably not a symptom.
Stretch Marks? Many

Sleep? Actually been pretty good this week, up until the ear thing

Best Moment last week? Making it through the breastfeeding class without passing out!

Movement? Never get tired of it.

Food Cravings? Eh. Not really.

What I miss? Breathing. Being able to sit up to type and eat. I have to lean back, and I just don't do that!

What I am looking forward to? My mom finished the bumper for the crib, so I'm looking forward to putting that on.

Milestones? Only 5 weeks!

How is Daddy? Cute. He's the one who stopped and wanted to buy baby clothes at the store on Tuesday!

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Big Step

I took a big step today. Well, it was a big step for me, anyway.

I washed some of the baby stuff.

Sheets, a mattress pad, and lots of clothes.

I had to take the tags off first.

Let me repeat that, because it seems so small written up there on the screen.

I took the tags off baby clothes, and I washed them.

I've avoided that very thing this entire pregnancy, because it feels like tempting fate.

With less than six weeks to go, I figure the fate I'm tempting would be for her to come early, and me to have no washed sheets for her to sleep on.

Deep breath.

Saturday, January 29, 2011

34 Weeks

How far along? 34 Weeks, 1 day

Total weight gain? 22 lbs. Although my mom says I actually look thinner, and that the weight is all in my stomach. So that's something...

Symptoms? Heartburn. Overwhelming sense of fear....oh wait. That's probably not a symptom.

Stretch Marks? Many

Sleep? Wake up to turn over, wake up cause of the heartburn, but other than that it's not too bad.

Best Moment last week? Not catching the flu with at least 30 of our students out with it. Believe me, that's a great thing.

Movement? Never get tired of it.

Food Cravings? Eh. Not really.

What I miss? Breathing. Being able to sit up to type and eat. I have to lean back, and I just don't do that!

What I am looking forward to? Finishing the nursery. It's almost there!

Milestones? First childbirth class is out of the way. 2 more, plus breastfeeding and parenting classes.

How is Daddy? I don't think the childbirth class scared him as much as it scared me. Which is totally not fair!

I went to the cardiovascular specialist on Monday, and they said my heart was "perfect", so we know that's not causing the dizziness. Dr. P called at 8:45 Wednesday night, while I was in the bathtub and Jeff couldn't be bothered to reach the 2 feet to answer my cell phone, so she left a message. She said I am anemic and to up my iron intake, and also to let her know if I have any problems contacting the other specialist. Since I can't find his business card, I would asssume it's a problem, but since I go see her on Thursday anyway, I'll just talk to her then.

When Jeff and I walked into the hospital lobby for childbirth class on Thursday, there was an L&D nurse just getting off the elevator, and she looked at me and asked "Is it time!?" Uhhhh. NO! Seriously. I still have six weeks. I shouldn't look this big!

Saturday, January 22, 2011

33 Weeks

How far along? 33 Weeks, 1 day

Total weight gain? 20 lbs. It's getting to the point where I'd just rather not say...

Symptoms? Heartburn. Not sure if I've mentioned that...

Stretch Marks? Of course.

Sleep? Wake up to turn over, wake up cause of the heartburn, but other than that it's not too bad.

Best Moment last week? Baby shower :)

Movement? Lots. It's so cool to be able to sit and watch my stomach move on it's own.

Food Cravings? Sushi. Ice cream. I want lots of ice cream.

What I miss? Breathing.

What I am looking forward to? Finishing the nursery. It's almost there!

Milestones? 33 weeks is surely a milestone.

How is Daddy? Painting the nursery! He's good.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Doctor's note, please?

I had a doctor appointment today. (Loving going every two weeks, BTW. Doesn't bother me a bit.) I had four questions to ask her walking in, and she managed to ask me about two of them before I got to ask her. However, that was where the coolness ended.

Last appointment, I mentioned that I had been shaky/dizzy/lightheaded that week, and that the school nurse actually sent me home. Well, that shaky/dizzy/lightheaded business has continued pretty regularly since then. Dr. P said it's perfectly normal for pregnant women to pass out, but that the circumstances that are making me feel that way are not the normal ones. (It usually happens in the morning, it's not blood sugar or blood pressure, it's not a change of position, etc.) Instead, there are times where I can't stand for more than a minute, or, like this morning, I get dizzy while sitting in my chair. So, she's sending me to get a cardiovascular ultrasound and an EKG, and when that's over, she's sending me to a high-risk pregnancy doc so he can look at things. Oh, and she's running some bloodwork on me in the meantime.

While all of that sounds nice and terrifying, she told Jeff while I was getting my blood drawn that she doesn't think it's that serious and that it's probably just an exaggerated pregnancy symptom (not that I'm exaggerating, my body is), but that she wanted to be sure. Awesome.

On the bright side, I got a doctor's note excusing me from our field trip in two weeks, since the entire field trip is hiking around in the woods for a day. In February. That's one I'm perfectly fine with missing.

I call heart doctor tomorrow, and call high-risk doctor after I see the first one. I guess I'll let ya know.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

How is pregnancy like a paper cut?

Or, to be even more vague,

"How is a raven like a writing desk?"

I couldn't sleep last night and though up an awesome blog post about how it feels to carry a baby that is half stranger. But of course, I can't remember much of it this morning, except that I had compared it to a paper cut. So bear with me.

When we first got our azoo diagnosis, and we realized that children that were biologically "ours" were out of the question, I felt like I'd been shot. I felt like I was going to bleed to death from the pain of it. Of course, that pain has dulled. Had it not, I'm not sure I would be a functioning human being.

It still hurts though. But it feels more like a paper cut than a bullet hole. How?

Think about a paper cut. A deep one. Sure, it hurts like the dickens, and you're irritated that you just got a paper cut, because really, how useless is that? But the pain fades until you go and use antibacterial stuff or get dish soap in it. Then it stings just as much as it did when you got it.

This DS thing is kind of like that.

Actually, it's a lot like that. It hurt to begin with, that this baby didn't ever have the chance to inherit my husband's gorgeous blue eyes or is perpetual energy or his ability to have a conversation with a tree stump.

Most of the time, I don't think about that. Most of the time, I think about our daughter, and how loved she already is, and how awesome it'll be when she gets here.

But then, something will happen to bring the sting back. Like a complete stranger commenting on how curly her hair is sure to be when they see Jeff and I together. Or conversations about other babies and which parent they look like the most, and knowing that while these conversations will surely happen about Cate, Jeff, and I, they will be skewed. I assume these things will always sting, like a never-ending, never-healing paper cut.

And really, how useless is that?

Friday, January 14, 2011

32 Weeks

How far along? 32 weeks

Total Weight Gain? 19 lbs

Symptoms? Heartburn.

Stretch Marks? Too many to think about.

Sleep? Better than it was. Sleeping naked helps, even though then I freeze. In fact, the other night, I managed to sleep 5 straight hours!

Best Moment Last Week? Getting the email from my team to the whole school inviting everyone to the staff baby shower. It's probably the only one I'll have, and it made me smile (and cry. The girl who wrote the invite made it super sweet.)

I'm slowly getting to distinguish between a kick and a roll, which is cool.

Food Cravings? Sushi

What I miss? Being able to stand for more than 5 minutes without getting lightheaded.

What I am looking forward to? Baby shower on Wednesday!

Milestones? Only 8 weeks left!

How is Daddy?
Cute. We toured the L&D yesterday at the hospital, and he stood and stared at the 1 baby in the nursery.

Friday, January 7, 2011

31 Weeks

How far along? 31 weeks

Total Weight Gain? 17 lbs

Symptoms? Heartburn still tops the list. Exhaustion, although that may just be school.

Stretch Marks? Lots, unfortunately. I have about 8 small ones on my stomach, but my hips and thighs are covered. It's slightly ridiculous.

Sleep? Actually managed to get a couple good nights of sleep this week. Had to sleep naked to do it, which makes it much colder, but hey, I'll take what I can get. Really missing my electric blanket.

Best Moment Last Week? Feeling her kick all the time. I find it amazing.

Movement? Yes. Lots. In fact, she's starting to hit and kick hard enough it hurts. I had three people ask me this week if I was ok because I was making faces when she kicked. I was fine, she's just strong! :)

Food Cravings? Nope. Not really.

What I miss? Being able to bend over comfortably, and stand up comfortably. Oh, and being able to walk faster than a sloth without losing my breath. Oh, and being able to say more than three sentences without losing my breath.

What I am looking forward to? Refinishing the dresser for the nursery. It's a used one we bought last week, and it needs sanded down and repainted. I probably can't do the painting, but I can sand and do the detail work.

Milestones? This whole pregnancy feels like one big milestone.

How is Daddy? Go ask him. He needs to get on his blog more anyway.

Thanks for the comments about the breastfeeding thing. Foxy, I plan on taking a class at the end of the month. Maybe they'll have advice, but like I said, I don't think I'll be too torn up about it if I can't. I don't plan on letting it define me as a mother.

On Tuesday, I got sent home by the school nurse. I was shaky, dizzy, and seeing spots. Tuesday was the worst, but anytime I stand up for more than 20 minutes (sometimes less) the feeling comes back. I asked the doctor about it at my appointment yesterday and was told it could be:
a) the baby is laying on an artery.
b)my sodium is too high ( she didn't think it was this, since my ankles aren't swollen)
c)I'm fighting off a cold or something (the way I feel at the moment, this seems likely)
d)my heart is stressed out, and I need an EKG.

The last choice is a little worrisome. I was told to keep my feet propped up as much as possible and to call on Monday if I was still feeling the same. I gotta say, teaching from my chair with my feet propped up makes me feel like the laziest teacher ever, but I don't feel a bit guilty about it. :)