Friday, January 30, 2009

The Baby Train

We finally found wooden letters we like for the baby's name to hang on the wall and while I was painting them this afternoon it struck me how many times I am going to see those letters in the years to come. And how often that little word is going to come out of my mouth. You don't really realize how much you use someone's name until you've had a child, and how many variations you make on it. I must use the name "Stella" 100 times a day. Okay, I might be exaggerating a little, but not much. I'm now super-excited about the baby's name and can't wait for her to arrive so I can share it with the world! I think even Stella is impatient about not knowing her sister's name. She insisted again the other day that we name her Lisa. Or Carolyn, which is the name of Stella's Cabbage Patch Kid. I guess at least she's no longer wanting to name her "Lisa Garbage Beer":)
One of the downsides about not telling the world your kid's name is that after we get the letters all assembled and hung on the wall, we'll immediately have to take them down and hide them. But it's worth it to have a little secret from the world that will last until little BabyBean makes her grand entrance!

We got the fan installed today by some awesome electricians (check out Tim's post for details), and so now I am ready to get cracking on that room! We put down the rug we got at IKEA and it looks fantastic. I'm so happy with how well it ties the room together. Once we get the curtains up, hopefully this weekend, I'll take another picture to show our progress! Tomorrow Stella's being shipped off to the grandparents and we have grand plans for a trip to IKEA and hopefully some time registering at Babies 'R Us, just so we can start keeping track of what we need!

We went to the doctor yesterday, (there's another hour of my life I'll never get back. And now she wants to see me every 2 weeks. Yay!), and she said I can bring my own hospital gown. Ever since I saw Tori Spelling in this incredibly cute hospital gown on Tori and Dean in Hollywood, I decided that I was going to blow a little cash and B.Y.O.G. (bring your own gown). There are SO many pictures taken after the baby is born, and while you don't really care at the time, I will go ahead and say that in retrospect, I don't like looking at pictures of myself looking that awful. When I went to the hospital a couple of weeks ago, the gowns were just disgusting, really faded and ready for the scrap heap. So I'm going to invest in my own. I'm also going to invest in some cute nursing gowns, because when you get home there are also lots of pictures taken and you don't want to look like a slob. Or at least I don't. I'm vain, fine I admit it! I cannot believe these things are actually hospital gowns, they're adorable! They're also very expensive, so I may go for the not quite as chic ones here. Hey, the baby can use her big sister's clothes, but Mama needs her own;)

Rockin' FronteraFest

Last night, 5 'Til, the FronteraFest piece I directed, went up and rocked the casbah. I am so proud of the actors and Anna, my one-woman techie/designer band, as well as Aimee, the writer of course. The audience laughed their asses off and were left wanting more. But don't take my word for it, check out Julie's review over at the Austinist. She said: "A few short plays were winners. Aimee Gonzalez's hilarious Five 'Til, produced by Loaded Gun Theory, was clever, extremely well-acted and directed, and too much fun to watch. With a clever premise and some unexpected twists, this piece made us wish Gonzalez had a Long Fringe version for us to see."

Indeed. But I am sure we'll be producing more of Aimee's work in the future, she is a natural fit with LGT and it's pretty much impossible for us to go on with just one (very busy) resident playwright.

Friday, January 23, 2009

My haircut

So this is not the best picture I've ever taken of myself, but it shows the haircut, sort of. Wow, I look like a crazy person with two different sized eyes. Really, it looks better in person, I promise.

I decided chopping my hair as short as possible while still giving me hair around my face in case of pregnancy face bloat was the best option. My hair has been funKY this pregnancy. It's normally so thick that when you combine that with the fact that during pregnancy none of your hair falls out, I have felt like mushroom head. And I've been totally paranoid about cutting my hair short because I had it short when I was pregnant with Stella and so there was nothing to hide behind when I got "pregnancy fat face". Of course, I also got "everywhere else pregnancy fat" last time, so perhaps fat face will not attack me this pregnancy. But I've been living with that fear of going too short this pregnancy until I realized that when I was pregnant with Stella I had a hairstylist who would cut my hair way too short, even if that wasn't what I asked for. My hairstylist now, Tamara, doesn't do that. She does this amazing thing where she cuts my hair like I want it. What a concept, huh? So I'm happy this time! It was quite astounding how she just kept thinning and thinning my hair to make it seem more in line with the amount of hair a normal person sports. Tim thinks it actually makes me look thinner, so hopefully it will be my secret weapon against pregnancy fat face, should it attack!

Taking Care of Business!

The crib skirt. Ignore the sheet, that's left over from Stella's decor, I need to get a sheet that matches BabyBean's decor.

I velcroed the cribskirt onto the crib yesterday AND sewed the curtains. Yay! Unfortunately we don't have a curtain rod yet (we want something like this from IKEA, but when we were there last weekend Tim thought he'd seen one in Stella's closet and so we didn't buy one. It turned out just to be the clips). It's just like what we have in Stella's room. This morning I vaccuumed and mopped the kitchen/dining room, which was in desperate need. I realized my house was in desperate need of cleaning yesterday, but I really wanted to get the sewing projects done. Wednesday I was having a lot of Braxton-Hicks AGAIN (I guess it will be a weekly phenomenon), so I took it really easy, I read for all of Stella's nap. I love reading, but I cannot tell you how hard it is for me to just sit around when there are there are 322 things that need to get done. Some of them staring me in the face. I think that these contractions are just annoyances though. I mean, there is no baby emerging from between my legs, so they must be annoyances, right;) Anyway, I am still being a good patient and taking it easy. Like right now? I really want to be vaccuuming, dusting, or something but I am taking a break in-between chores. Aren't you proud of me? (BTW, no one has actually told me to take it easy, that's just me being cautious.)

Speaking of annoyances, the nurse from my dr's office called Monday and said they wanted to see me Tuesday morning to follow up on the hospital visit. I went and saw a Physician's Assistant and they did absolutely nothing! They didn't even check my cervix, which the nurse on the phone had said they probably wanted to do. They did check the baby's heartbeat, which is good, and asked my weight, did the pee on a stick thing to check proteins, but that was it. It was a total waste of my time. Sigh. That's another reason why I'm so behind.

Man, this post was b-o-r-i-n-g. Sorry 'bout that. If I have time after I dye my hair this afternoon, I'll post a pic of my new 'do. I got my hair seriously chopped Wednesday and it looks awesome, if I do say so myself!

Friday, January 16, 2009

Sleep Deprivation and what passes for Adventure these days

I am so tired. Stella's been getting up earlier and earlier, Punky's returned which means constant waking up in the middle of the night to throw a cat across the room and off your head, and I got to have a fun emergency room visit Wednesday night. Wednesday night I kept having contractions, and if you have 6 or more in an hour you're supposed to call the on-call nurse. Unfortunately, I had 6 in about 50 minutes. So I called and she told me to take Tylenol, drink lots of water, and lay down for another hour and to call her back if they didn't get better. I continued to have them every 10 minutes for the next hour, so I called her back and she sent me to the hospital. It was really scary and I started to get freaked out. We waited for Tim's mom to come over to stay with Stella (thank GOD for having in-town relatives), tried to go on 35 only to find it was closed, made a detour to Mopac and finally arrived at Labor and Delivery. It was a slow night, there must have been 10 nurses just sitting around. I guess a very cold night in January is not as popular as March for having babies.
They got me in a room and in one of the horrible hospital gowns (these were even worse than normal, they were faded and gross. I am more convinced than ever that I need to buy one of the pretty ones that Tori Spelling wore on her show for when the baby's born.) They then spent forever quizzing me first on health and informational questions (I turned in my pre-certification for the hospital on Friday but it isn't in the system yet), and then of course the ER admissions person came in to make sure my insurance was in order. While hospitals can be scary, I personally found it really reassuring to be in a place where they could take care of me no matter what was going on. If something was wrong, even, as Tim pointed out, if I slipped in the bathroom, there were experts there to take care of me. That's SO comforting when you don't know what's going on with you and your baby! Eventually the doctor came in and checked me out. Everything was still closed and where it should be, which was excellent news, and they also did a test to see whether I had a protein that showed whether I would have preterm labor in the next two weeks. The doctor then wanted to start me on an IV to make sure I was hydrated and hopefully stop the contractions.
Ah, the IV. I wasn't really excited about it, but I think doctors know what they are doing and I follow their recommendations. I was REALLY not excited about it once two nurses tried 4 times total to get it started and failed. I tried to be stoic, especially since I couldn't help but think of poor Marsha and her many times of being stuck by nurses who couldn't get an IV started. But to be honest, it hurt really, really, bad. Like it brought tears to my eyes and felt like Chlorox was coursing through my veins. Finally they checked with the doctor and he said that he didn't want to be the one that made me go through more pain, so I could drink two giant glasses of water. Which I did. Then they said that the protein test for preterm labor came back negative, yay, and I was just having a lot of Braxton-Hicks contractions. So they sent me home, but told me I had totally done the right thing and in the future if I have 6 or more contractions an hour they still want to see me. I just hope that I don't visit the hospital multiple times over the next 10 or so weeks! I got to bed about 1:30, but had to get up every 30 minutes to pee and throw the cat off my head. Yay!
Tim and I both freaked out a little since we are the furthest possible from being ready for the baby. Okay, that's not true. We have a place for her to sleep, a carseat, and clothes in the attic. But I definitely feel inspired to get her room totally in order now!

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

She's Baaaaack

My parents called last night. Punky's back. Seriously, after over 2 weeks of gallivanting around Terranova West (my parent's neighborhood), they heard meowing yesterday and initially thought it was their cat, Phoebe. Then they realized it was coming from the back porch. They opened the back door and in sauntered Punky! We should have known Punky would just be gone long enough to make us feel sad and guilty and then pop back up. Oh, Punky! They've been out of town more than they've been in town the last couple of weeks so it's possible she'd tried to return home before. They said she's scratch-free and doesn't look to have lost any weight. Their neighbors leave out cat food, so she probably got her nourishment there.
They're bringing her back today. So it's back to waking up with a cat sleeping on my head and nightly pills. I can't wait!

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Knocking off stuff on the to-do list

Thursday the nesting instinct kicked in. Hard. So I spent all of Stella's nap getting stuff cleaned out of the nursery closet. I finished Friday and yesterday when Tim was able to move the really heavy stuff. This is the result, I just wish I'd taken a before picture. You'll have to trust me when I say that it was stuffed to the gills. Yes, unfortunately the previous owners painted the closed blue too. And it's just going to stay that way.
Today we got a ceiling fan. It's sort of funky, but it looks really cool in person. Tim is putting it up right now.

We also got curtains for our bedroom at Penney's. They were having a huge sale, and although I never expected to spend as much as we did for curtains in my life, they are very nice, very high quality blackout type and we got them for 50% off. We have huuuuuge windows in our room, so it took a lot to cover them! We ordered tracks from Walmart, so when those get in in a couple of weeks, my father will no longer be able to call us exhibitionists for not having our bedroom windows covered. And the baby should be able to sleep in there for the first few months of her life.

Stella has decided to work on her defiance skills this weekend, so it's been a pretty difficult one. No naps, lots of time-outs, lots of "no" and lots of guilt for letting a 2-year-old get us so worked up. But I will include a picture of her in happier times:

She's playing with her tools that we bought her with some of her Christmas money on the tool bench that some friends gave us because their kiddo was done with it. She LOVES it! I just don't understand why you would want to gender-stereotype your kid. That day we started out in the morning playing with her dollhouse, then switched to the toolbench, then she had me help her diaper and dress her Cabbage Patch kid, Carolyn. So much fun!

I leave you with one more picture. Ladies who are pregnant for the first time, this is what that nasty glucose solution they make you drink to test for gestational diabetes tastes like:

So foul. Tim thought it would be funny to record the moment for posterity. That stuff was so awful, it burned my throat and even my stomach. Then I was totally wired afterwards before the sugar crash. My doctor's office was running late (as usual) and I came extremely close to missing the hour window between finishing the drink and having your blood drawn. I sprinted upstairs and they whisked me back immediately in front of a waiting room full of people. There was NO way I was drinking that crap again!

Sunday, January 04, 2009

3rd Trimester. Eek!

So today marks my 28th week of pregnancy, which means I have officially entered the 3rd trimester. Which means, gulp, I have approximately 3 months left! I cannot believe how big my belly has gotten this go-around.
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28 weeks pregnant with Stella

Actually, looking at the pictures, it's hard to tell if I'm that much bigger, but it sure feels like I am! Luckily, I am definitely much smaller in the weight department. Even with the holidays, I'm still right on track with weight gain. Yay!

But I have so much left to do! It seems like my to-do list gets longer and longer every day. I need to clean out the office closet, sew curtains and a crib skirt, finish the baby's scrapbook, finish Stella's baby book and get her more recent stuff scrapped (especially now that my sister Christine gave me all the scrapbooking tools I need plus gift certificates for more for Christmas!), and oodles more that I am forgetting. Because I have pregnancy brain. I have walked into rooms 3 or 4 times today and forgotten why I walked in there. Luckily, I am a list-maker by nature, so I write everything down in my planner everyday. And I mean everything. Because if I don't write it down, it will not get done! (Which is why the rose bushes my mother-in-law gave me never get watered. And I know she will disown me if those die!)

I got majorly behind on baby-related chores over the holidays and I have chocked January full of activities: I'm directing LGT's FronteraFest piece and I am in a Murder Mystery at Spaghetti Warehouse that runs until 2 weeks before the baby's born. This on top of my usual commitments like the B. Iden Payne meetings and seeing shows for that, book club, etc. Sometimes I think I'm insane. I'm a little paranoid that BabyBean is going to be early. I have soooo many Braxton-Hicks contractions, which I don't remember having at all with Stella. Christmas night I totally freaked out that I was going to go into premature labor because I seemed to have one long contraction that lasted a couple of hours. I had to insist on just lying down on the couch. I think that I overdid it and needed to rest. No more scares like that, luckily, but I'm definitely trying to pace myself more with housework and ask for Tim's help more. I feel pretty much fine, so maybe my body just has to tell me to slow down!

Stella is still super-excited about getting a sister. Today she said that she'd read her baby sister "Knuffle Bunny", a new book she got from her Aunt Caroline and Uncle Daniel for Christmas and her current favorite. I asked her if she was excited to meet her baby sister and she said yes, with a big grin! We're super-excited too, now I just have to get some stuff on that 'ole to-do list knocked out!