Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Selling My Doppler

In the midst of my cleaning and decluttering I came across my fetal doppler. I used it some during those difficult early weeks of the second trimester but I haven't used it since December. My plan is to ebay it but I thought I'd offer it here to any of you who may be interested.

The unit I have is from StorkRadio and the details are here. The retail price of this thing is supposedly $300 but I'll sell it for what I paid for it on ebay which is $100 plus shipping. There's also a tube of gel included which is still almost full. This one has a digital display that calculates the heart-rate and it has a plug for earphones.

Drop me an email or comment if you're interested!

Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Much Ado About Nothing

The good news is that I was able to take a nice hot shower yesterday. We seemed to have fixed the hot water heater problem but my gut instinct is that little hands were not the problem in fiddling with the heater. I suspect the 13 year old appliance that is only supposed to last 8-10 years is probably on its way out. I'm really tempted to go ahead and replace it with a more energy efficient one. I'll probably put our tax refund to use for this. I did research yesterday and was really interested in the tankless models but soon decided that the installation costs would be too much of an unknown for this old house. So I'm going to stick with an old fashioned tank model. The government may start giving Energy Star ratings to heaters in the spring so hopefully ours will hold out till then.

I'm going to tell you something that will probably make you groan and roll your eyes: I finished my taxes last night. Okay, I'll qualify: I'm still waiting for a W2 form and I just finished filling out the paperwork to send to my tax planner. Last year she had my return done by the 15th of February and I had my refund a week later. I'm looking forward to the same scenario this year.

My hubby got a new position in his company recently. Same crappy schedules but he'll get paid more (not sure how much more). He also decided to take the plunge and put in his application with a start up airline based here in Columbus. That part scares and excites me at the same time. If he took a job there he'd be home every night at probably about the same pay as he gets now. But it's a start-up that may well fail within a year or two. The other thing that concerns me about his timing is if he leaves his current company before the baby comes. I worry about insurance problems and also about the timing of having him home at the right time. I guess time will tell!

Monday, January 29, 2007

26 Weeks

I made the mistake last night of surfing over to and spending some time reading the pregnancy message boards. I found that by and large the posts fell into 3 categories:
1. Baby gear talk for first time parents. Along the lines of "what kind of diaper bag should I get". Fascinating discussions for first-timers but once you've got 3 diaper bags and 5 carriers (yes, okay I went a little overboard there) you should probably avoid those types of conversations.
2. Talk about all the bad stuff that can happen. Pre-term labor, preeclampsia, bed rest; you name, someone on the board had experienced it. Of course, I felt strangely compelled to read all those posts. I'm now re-evaluating all the various twinges and pains of my body.
3. General talk about pregnancy and new-baby issues. Topics from "how do you stay laying on your side all night" to "will you co-sleep". I found some of these threads informative from a purely comparative point of view.
All in all, probably not the best-spent hour of my life. I promise not to do it again. I remember with G that I avidly read and contributed to message boards. I don't remember the talk of bad stuff phasing me that much. I guess I thought I was invulnerable.

Speaking of twinges and pains, the pain on my left side is getting worse. Before it would only hurt at the end of the day and laying down at night brought relief. Now it hurts throughout the day and wakes me up at night hurting. I guess I'll have to bring it up at my midwife appointment this Thursday although I hold out little hope that she'll have any solutions. I'm going to pull out my nursing bras and see if any of those help.

Yesterday afternoon I called up J to ask him about something. He sounded a little weird. He told me about how, when he was driving to Detroit yesterday, he was passing a car when he hit a patch of ice and spun around several times and ended up in the median. He was damn lucky as he didn't hit anyone and the only damage done was a mud flap got torn off. I could tell it had shaken him.

Of course, after that my question paled in comparison but what I needed to know is if he had noticed a decrease in the quantity of hot water. Seems for the last few days my showers have been getting shorter and shorter. Yesterday by the time I finished washing my hair (the first thing I do) I had the knob all the way over to hot and there was only lukewarm water coming out. He had indeed noticed and advised that I call BIL. He came over and could find nothing wrong with it except that the dial that goes from HOT to VERY HOT was turned to its lowest setting. He turned it up some and so we'll see if maybe it's just a case of little hands touching what they shouldn't have been touching. Worst case is that we have to replace the hot water heater. Gotta love old houses. But it looks like this one is about 13 years old so I guess it's probably about due.

Saturday, January 27, 2007

25w5d: Countdown is on

As of tomorrow, I will have 99 days to go. We're down to double digits. Reminds me of that song we used to sing on the bus on the way to track meets - "99 bottles of on the wall". I feel compelled to confess that I still check the toilet paper every single time I wipe. I still find myself starting to worry if I can't seem to feel any movement at a certain moment.

I wrote a few weeks ago that my goal before the baby comes was to go through every room of my house and clean and declutter. I'm happy to report that I have accomplished that goal except for the nursery. Yup, I've decluttered every inch of this house and I can't tell you how good it feels. J and I have made numerous trips to drop off stuff at Goodwill. I also got rid of at least a half dozen bags of trash. I could probably stand to get rid of a few more of G's toys but I think I'll wait a while to make another pass at them.

Today I went into the nursery and decided to start tackling the diapers. I stood at the door for a few minutes and debated about whether I should really start the project now or wait. Because in the back of my mind is always that question about how I'm going to handle the situation if I lose the baby. What would make it easier. Would it be harder to handle with a nursery all ready to go? Or would it be harder to have to sort through all that stuff with no baby to show for it?

It makes me angry sometimes that infertility still hangs around to haunt me even though it's supposedly been conquered. I wish I could just relax and totally enjoy this pregnancy the way I did my first one. I wish that I had passed some milestone at which I miraculously relaxed.

I feel a lot of movement these days but the movement I notice most is when the baby has the hiccups. I remember with G that she seemed to have the hiccups after every single meal I ate. Everyone was skeptical that eating could cause the baby to get the hiccups but it happened time and time again. I haven't noticed that pattern with this one - the hiccups are more random but she seems to get them several times a day. Right now she is in a position (I think her head is actually down at this point) where I feel a slight pressure on my cervix with every hiccup and sometimes I feel a little foot kicking my lungs. It's kinda cute but at the same time annoying: I hate having the hiccups and sometimes I find myself holding my breath to see if she'll stop!

By the way, I did decide to go ahead and start working on the nursery. It was rather fun to get out the tiniest little cloth diapers that fit size 4 to 10 pounds. G outgrew that size within a matter of weeks (she weighed just over 7# at birth) so they all look very new and pristine. They are now organized in baskets waiting for a new little butt to cover!

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Small Miracles

It doesn't take much to make a good day for me:
- I got out of the house for an hour. Granted it was just a trip to Kmart to buy toilet paper and such but still, I got out!
- The plumbers came and went today and left with only $439 of my money. Much, much less than the thousands I was afraid of when they started talking about sawing pipes and cutting up my floor.
- My babysitter called today and her kids are finally over all their illnesses. We were supposed to go last week Thursday. I am only just beginning to realize how important it is for me to get a real break every now and then. Of course, part of tomorrow will be spent cleaning up and out G's room. But at least I won't have someone asking me every 5 minutes "What are you doing Mommy?".
- I had a few sips of wine with dinner tonight. Not enough to make me feel anything but it sure did taste good!

Tuesday, January 23, 2007


I am *so* glad that I have already finished the bulk of my cleaning and decluttering! The last few days I just can't seem to make it without a 2-3 hour afternoon nap. Today I tackled my bathroom and made it through all of about 3 shelves before I had to call it quits. I'm off to take my nap now. At this rate I don't know how I'm going to finish my upstairs before April!

Monday, January 22, 2007

25 Weeks

Sleeping has gotten more and more difficult the last few weeks. Or, should I say, getting comfortable is getting progressively more difficult. I have an area under my left breast that, by the end of the day, aches considerably. I've tried several different bras and one seems to make it slightly better but nothing alleviates it completely. When I lay down on my left side the area goes numb which is really annoying. I had the same problem with G and the diagnosis was just that it was my anatomy. Unfortunately this time it showed up earlier and is lasting longer.

I finally noticed the linea negra the other day. I hadn't noticed it before because I can only see it when I look in the mirror and my body image is such that I just don't have a desire to do that very often.

I am happy to report that I am making great progress in cleaning out the nursery. The biggest problem that had me paralyzed was what to do with all the clothes. Not only do I have G's outgrown clothes, but I have a fair amount of clothes for her in larger sizes that I pick up occasionally at garage sales and thrift stores. I would love to have the space and funds to be able to put them all in plastic boxes but I finally admitted that that just wasn't going to happen. So I opted for plastic trash bags. I have about 10 bags for the clothes up to 24 months sitting in the nursery. Looks tacky but we'll clear them out pretty quickly. The rest are in a closet in G's room our of sight.

Having gotten a handle on all those clothes, I'm now left with infant gear and lots of cloth diapers. Last night after having gotten all the clothes put away, I plopped down in the glider for a while and allowed myself to remember how it was rocking G there and imagine (just for a moment) what it would be like to rock another one there.

I'll post more pictures of the nursery in progress later. I'll also post a picture of the cloth diapers that fit newborns. They are so cute and it reminds me how quickly one forgets how small a baby is!

Friday, January 19, 2007

More Potty Talk

I said previously that I'm not a competitive person. So why then, when I read this entry on dooce where she mentions that Leta is still in diapers (Leta is just a few weeks older than G) did I feel this surge of triumph? Yes! Her child is still in diapers and mine is already potty training. Silly, but that's what I thought. Especially since Leta has done everything just a few weeks ahead of G all along (as it should be!).

Speaking of which, G is getting pretty good at the potty thing and she is slowly developing the ability to "hold" it. Tonight I noticed for the first time her doing a little dance and then she reached for her crotch. I asked if she needed to pee and her face brightened up and she yelled "Yes" as she ran off to the potty. Now we just have to work on the finer aspects such as pulling down one's pants and wiping.

Also speaking of toilets, we were watching a movie in the basement last Sunday when I started to hear an ominous dripping sound. We finally traced it to the pipe that leads from the downstairs toilet to the main sewer line. A flush of said toilet unleashed a torrent of water. The plumber came today and, amidst much shaking of his head, finally decided a course of action which involves ripping up lots of rotten wood in the bathroom and attempting to saw through a very, terribly corroded pipe at a critical juncture. If we're lucky the pipe won't crumble there. If we're not.... well, he didn't want to attempt an estimate of what that would entail; he just said we'd be talking a lot more money. Which reminds me that he left without giving us an estimate of what we'll pay if our luck holds. In the end we decided against putting the bathroom floor back together; we'll save that tiling or flooring project (and the associated expense) for another day. Which means that we'll have bare wood around the potty but at least we'll have a working potty and I won't be running up and down the stairs a dozen times a day.

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

24 Weeks

I was just reading my 23 Week entry to see what was happening last week. I seem to have suddenly developed this short-term memory loss situation; I can't remember diddly-squat these days. It's particularly bad when I forget what I'm talking about right in the middle of a sentence.

Well, not much new is happening. The baby is still very active. I'm still always very hungry. And I'm still potty-training G. The latter at least is going pretty well. Yesterday we even managed a poop in the potty although we missed that one today.

Sunday G got up from her nap and, in the midst of running around, said her ear hurt. I was apt to dismiss it: this child has *never* had an ear infection in her life. But it kept bugging me that she had said that, so we finally went to visit SIL to check it out. Sure enough, she has a very bad infection for which we are doing ear drops and antibiotics. I think it was particularly hurting her today. Poor kid. Poor mama that has to deal with Poor kid all day!

I have a fair number of May due-date blogs listed in my side bar. I'm not a competitive person by any stretch of the imagination but I am very comparative. I like to read and see what other people are experiencing. Some of the authors of the blogs have had no fertility problems. They write about things I probably would have written about my first time around. I like that perspective; it skips all the pain and heartache it took to get to this point.

Anyway, one of the things I've noticed of late is a tendency to start posting pictures of the budding nursery. I love looking at these rooms all full of brand new things just waiting for a new little being to use them. Well, I thought I should post some "before" pictures of our nursery, a.k.a. the Dumping Room. Right now it's the repository for all of G's outgrown clothes, infant toys, cloth diapers, and who knows what else?! Honestly, I probably won't get to bringing some order to this room till March or April. In the meantime, I've got to clean out the closets in G's room which contain more clothes. The whole clothes issue is becoming a big problem for me. I can't figure out a good way to organize and store them. Not only do I have outgrown clothing, but I've got a fair amount of clothes yet to be worn and I add to that as I find stuff at garage sales and resale. So I have to solve that problem before I can even think about bringing order to the chaos that is currently the nursery. Right now, to be honest, I'm looking forward to the day that I can start to get rid of some of this stuff!

Sunday, January 14, 2007

A Tip (FWIW)

Here's something I recently started doing and I thought I'd share it in case it might benefit someone else. You'll probably think I'm crazy but here goes anyway!

We get fast food about once a week. Okay, sometimes twice but that's all I'm admitting to! We always go to the same place (Micky D's for G and Burger King for me) and we always get the same thing. And you know what? It always costs the same! A while back I was rolling up some of the myriad of loose change that seems to work its way into our house, while racking my brain for a better use for it. So now here's what I do: I have some ziplocs with the name of the fast food place and the cost of our "usual". Then I raid the change jar for exact change. Voila. Not only do I get rid of the change without going to the bank, but I feel like I'm getting a "free" meal since it doesn't come out of my pin money. And as if that wasn't enough, I don't have to explain to the guy at the window why I gave him $10.02 for a meal that cost $3.72.

Now here's the really sad part. The lady at the McD's window apparently knows me now: she no longer counts all the change. She just smiles and tells us to have a good day. Must start cooking at home more :-)

Our Legal System

I've not had much experience with the US judicial system, but the one experience I had was enough to sour me on it. Years ago, an acquaintance/friend finally brought charges against her abusive husband. I was summoned to appear for my testimony on a Friday for the following Monday. After 3 days of sitting around waiting, the trial finally ended without my testimony. That was 3 days of having to take vacation off of work and having absolutely no say in the matter. Didn't leave a good taste in my mouth.

Skip to 3 years ago when I rear ended a car in a turn lane with a green light. Let's just leave the story at that and say that technically I was at fault. And they sued a few months later. Almost 3 years later it is finally coming to trial. I received a letter a few days ago saying that the trial date had been set for 17 May. I emailed the lawyer to explain why I wouldn't possibly be sitting in a court room a few weeks after giving birth. So, to accommodate me, they've moved it up to 23 April. Great. I'll only be 38 weeks pregnant then. I'm sure I'll enjoy sitting for hours on end in a court room. I emailed again to explain the distinct possibility of labor or bed rest by that point but it didn't seem to phase the lawyer. He said just to keep in touch with him and he would plan on that date. As much as I would like to get out of it, the alternative is not much better as it will mean bringing an infant with me to court (since I plan to breastfeed and pumping didn't work well at all with G). Did I mention I don't care much for the legal system? Yes, I know there are worse alternatives but I sure wish this thing could have been worked out several years ago.

Saturday, January 13, 2007

Computers and Doulas

I wrote a while back about my dead computer. I'm very happy to report that the local computer shop was able to move all my data onto my backup drive. The longer I was without it, the more I missed. Especially the other night when I was scanning an old tax return and I realized that I had scanned older ones previously and shred them but never burned the scans to CD. They were all more than 10 years old but still, how stupid can one be. So when I got my drive back tonight, the very first thing I did was burn those things to CD. I am in the process of making a backup of my laptop drive right now. The next step will be to clean up the backup data and burn lots of it to CD. Who exactly was it that said computers make your life easier?

I got a comment from someone a while back asking exactly what a doula is. I read the same question recently on another blog. So let me attempt an explanation for any interested parties. In short, a doula is someone who is experienced in helping women get through labor and delivery. They are trained in comfort measures as well as trained to know the commonplace explanations for all those medical terms you may hear in the delivery room. They may or may not have a medical background but they aren't there to give medical advice. Their role is to explain things to you so that you have a better basis for making decisions. Primarily though, they are there to suggest ways for you to cope with the pain of labor. I guess the best case for the use of a doula is someone who wants to go drug-free or minimal drugs and is not sure they can do it without some help.

I didn't use a doula with G. I had a midwife who was there for the whole labor (which is different than most doctors who will typically only show up when it's time to push) plus J, my SIL and a good friend. Even with all that help, looking back on it, another helping hand wouldn't have hurt in the slightest. Plus, my labor all of a sudden took off at rocket speed and I went from 3cm to fully dilated in the span of about 3 hours. The midwife was good but, for various reasons unique to the situation, she didn't really get in there and try to help me through it. J did his best as did SIL and friend but having someone there who had seen that situation before would have been invaluable. The end of the story was that I made it through but to this day I'm not sure how!

This time around I have a midwife again and my friend who was there the first time is now an experienced labor and delivery nurse. SIL will probably be there and I hope, hope, hope that J will also get to be there. But even with all those things going for me, I'm not going to pass up the opportunity to have a doula.

I would think that almost any laboring woman can benefit from having a doula there. I think the more help you can get the better! So I would say definitely consider it.

Tuesday, January 09, 2007

End of the Season

This afternoon I took down all the Christmas decorations and this evening I just finished up addressing all my newsletters. I love having the tree and the lights and decorations around the house but it always seems like such a relief when they're gone. I also took the opportunity to clean and declutter the living room, including quite a few nic-nacs. Getting rid of those was hard because I don't buy myself nic-nacs. Everything I have was given to me either by J or my Mom. While I enjoy looking at them I decided it was time to pare down. It looks so much better!

I'm happy to report that we're surviving potty training. Tonight G said "Can I go potty and get a lifesaver?". She gets a lifesaver as a reward whenever she goes. Must be working because she actually did pee and her undies were dry. There's hope for this kid!

Sunday, January 07, 2007

23 Weeks; Tales from the Potty

23 Weeks and counting. The baby is kicking away and doing lots of flips and somersaults. Sometimes I would swear that she is placing her foot down in my cervix to see if she can get out yet. I've finally hit that stage where I just can't seem to get enough to eat. I'm trying really hard to eat well but what I really want is pure carbs and sugars; all the things that you should probably not load up on if you've got a potential glucose problem.

Overshadowing this pregnancy all along has been my dealings with my almost 3 year old. These past two weeks have been particularly hard for us for some reason. I'm chalking it up to a somewhat delayed holiday depression on my part. I keep telling myself that she'll be 3 soon and at some point these terrible days will be no more than a bad memory. In the meantime I lose a lot of sleep over trying to figure out how I'm going to survive until then.

I've been telling myself (and everyone else) that I would finally get around to G's potty training after the holidays were over. Since this past week has been incredibly hard for us for some reason, it may sound a little absurd that I decided Saturday night to top the week off by starting potty training on Sunday. But I did. I figured it couldn't get much worse. Surprisingly yesterday was pretty easy and we both lived to tell about it. We had 3 accidents but 8 successes. Granted, all but one of the successes occurred when I took her every 30 minutes and had her sit on the pot for a while. Yesterday morning I patiently explained to her that there were no more diapers so she was going to have to wear panties. She spent a few minutes begging for diapers but we looked all over and there just were none to be had (I had put them all away the night before). Then it seemed that she just sort of accepted it. I can tell that she gets exasperated with me for asking her every 10 minutes "do you need to go potty?" but, like I said, things are going well so far. We're a long ways from considering her truly "potty trained" but at least I can say that we're working on it.

If you'll excuse me now, there is some sugar or chocolate or something in the kitchen that is calling my name.....

Thursday, January 04, 2007

22w3d Checkup

We got a clean bill of health with the midwife this morning. She didn't even say anything about my weight gain. So far I have gained about 22#. If I stick to a pound a week from here on out I should stay below the 40# I gained with G. I'm sure it won't be easy because I have finally hit that point where I feel hungry all the time. It's very hard not to snack, so today at the grocery store I bought lots of fruit to try and encourage myself.

The only minor issue that came up was that I showed some glucose in my urine. She didn't seem to worried about it, especially when I told her that I had had orange juice for breakfast. She said not to have any juice next time and see how that goes. It worries me a little since I borderline failed my one hour glucola test with G. So I am also going to try and be extra careful with the sugar intake from here on out.

I have an appt in another 4 weeks. After that I'll start going every 2 weeks. Is it almost time for that already?! The first trimester of this pregnancy seemed interminable. But now it seems as if things are going so fast! The midwife even talked to me today about possibly taking a childbirth education refresher course.

Tuesday, January 02, 2007


After showering today I looked down and realized that my toes really needed some attention. As in, if I didn't cut my nails soon my shoes weren't going to fit. So I grabbed my tools and sat down to get to business. Let's just say that that is probably the last time I'll cut my own toenails for the next 4 months. I could barely reach my feet for the bulk of my belly and I had to stop between each toe and catch my breath.

My cousin saw me at Christmas and told me what a "cute little belly" I have. I told her I felt huge! She said I still looked small. Another friend told me the same thing. I finally got some vindication from another friend who saw me and immediately said "are you sure it's not twins?!".

So I guess I'll be looking around for a safe place to get a pedicure in a month or so. By then I may also have to pay someone to put my socks on in the morning. Better yet, I should start training G to do it for me!

Monday, January 01, 2007

22 Weeks

So far I have managed to survive both this pregnancy and the holidays. We had a nice time visiting family and friends but boy was I glad to get home. We stayed 9 days with my parents and 2 days with my best friend from college. The visit with my parents went well. My best friend from college, T, has 5 kids ranging from 4 to 12 and they are a loud, boisterous family. G seemed to enjoy herself but many times I could tell that she was overwhelmed. The night before we left, she asked if we could go home. I got a kick out of watching her because she would often go off by herself to play, which is exactly what I do in the context of a lot of noise and activity.

Our travel this time left much to be desired. I timed both flights to be in the afternoon during naps. She didn't nap on the plane either time. Going worked out okay. By the time we got off the flight coming home, though, I was about ready to push G off the plane and stay on it myself for the next destination. For a long time now (many months) I've attributed her behavior to just being a strong-willed child and hoped that it would get better with time. But on that flight there came a time when I realized that I no longer had control of the situation and, worse, she was acting in a way that, to a stranger, probably looked like she was a child with ADHD at the very least. It was not pretty. She bit me. She pulled my hair. And that's the least of it. It was so bad that we got in the car (J picked us up) and I let into him, telling him what a mistake it had been to ever have one, much less two, children. He didn't say much. After a sleepless night mulling it over I came to the conclusion that rather than expecting my child to suddenly wake up one morning as a little angel, I was going to have to crack down and get much more strict with her. So far it's working. Once today I caught her looking at me as if thinking, where did my permissive mother go and who is this alien in her place? I've figured out that watching movies holds a powerful sway over her as does the threat of taking away the binky. Believe me, I'm using both those things to my full advantage right now.

The baby seems to be doing well. I remember with G that I would feel a lot of kicks and pushes from little hands. This baby doesn't kick so much as turn somersaults. Sometimes I feel as if my stomach is going to pop in a given spot and I have to push back to get her to move to a more comfortable position. I have another midwife appointment this week and I'm not even going to think about how much Christmas weight I've put on.

All the blogs I'm catching up on seem to be listing their resolutions. I used to be the type of person to make very specific resolutions every year and actually follow through on them. Nowadays I stick with more generic stuff like getting rid of clutter and having a baby. Oh, and trying to get my Christmas/New Year's cards out. Speaking of which, I better go get started on those. Maybe I should just be an under-achiever and combine them with birth announcements....