Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Mommy Nuts

Sometimes when Daphne goes about doing goofy things, I tell her that she has gone nuts.

She seems to think of it as a prize more than an insult.

Today, after eating some delicious sausage, I was licking the juice off the plate (don't judge me, I'm pregnant) and Daphne looked at me and said "mommy nuts."

I couldn't stop laughing at the fact that she was able to recognize my totally odd behavior.

Monday, January 19, 2009

Only 8 More Weeks!

I've enrolled in my final semester of school. I just got word from my adviser that it looks like everything is working out as we thought, and I will complete the credits that I need to this semester.

All things barred, I just have to get a D in these final three classes and I will be a college graduate. I've never gotten less than a B in a class, and I rarely get B's so I don't think that I have too much to worry about.

Until then, I am working hard at writing papers and preparing for my midterms coming up in only two weeks!

So, if the groundhog sees his shadow and we have 6 more weeks of winter on Februrary 2, I'll be graduating right when spring starts to show its face.

Wish me luck in completing this endeavor that I have been working so long for. I'll finally have a Bachelor of Science!

Wednesday, January 14, 2009


Some days, Daphne gets dressed with the rest of he household. Like yesterday, for example, she was fully dressed for breakfast, but after eating a piece of toast with jam on it, needed a wardrobe change.

Other days, she just never manages to get clothes on in the first place, like today. When she was climbing on me, I noticed that her feet were cold and I told her that she needed to get clothes on if she wanted to climb on me. So I asked her, "Do you want to get clothes on?" She thought about it for about 10 seconds before coming back with a very vehement, "NOOOOOO."

She may be naked, but she is potty trained because of the lack of clothes, so who am I to complain.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Crazy Cleaning Lady

I'll just have to come right out and admit that my house has not been clean since Halloween. That is about exactly when I stopped feeling well enough to even feed myself, so there isn't much blame to be had, but my Christmas wish was that the house got cleaned. It didn't happen.

We did spend a good amount of time before I went to Eastern Oregon cleaning, so the stuff that needs to be handled at this point is the stuff that came in from the car from my trip.

While I was over there, my sister went through all of her baby clothes and gave me everything that is too small for her baby. I got a big bag full of clothes. Rather than just stuff it in my already full closets, I decided that I was going to go through everything and get things ready for the baby.

I've got 4 huge tubs full of clothes that had to be gone through. I'm going to sell almost all of my baby clothes at a consignment sale except for basic clothes in every size. Since I had SO MANY CLOTHES, I ended up keeping only about 25% of them. I kept all of my favorite clothes of every size and put them in separate bags and put them in one of my big tubs. The good news is that I got to keep all of the best of the clothes, and anything extraneous is going to be sold. The good news is that I get 70% of the money from the sale, which means that I might make enough money to buy Daphne's next set of clothes at the sale. And thus, the baby clothes morph into the big girls clothes.

This isn't all that crazy until you realize that I took a few newborn outfits and stuffed them into a diaper bag with all of my newborn diapers to take with us whenever we decide to go to the birth center. It's crazy because I don't even have a viable pregnancy at this point, but that's OK. I think that if I get my house organized up before the spring that I will spend the spring doing much more exciting things than organizing my house.

So call me crazy if you want, but I feel much more organized than I ever have in the past in the baby department. I get to put the baby car seat in the car around my birthday just in case. How fun!

Italy Daddy

Today, Daphne was vehemently asking me to make her a piece of toast with jam on it for breakfast.

She was using the style of asking where she turns her palms up and talks loudly like she is an Italian.

Jared asked her if she grew up in Italy, and I pointed out that she had, in fact, been in Italy for 6 weeks while I was pregnant with her.

I then asked her if she wanted to go live in Italy for a while, to which she answered, "Yes."

I told her that she would need to tell her daddy that she wants to go live in Italy. She turned to him and point-blank said, "Daddy, ITALY"

Pregnancy Update

A lot of people have been asking me out of true concern how I am doing with this pregnancy. I usually try to smile and give a pleasant answer. Sometimes I am truthful and say that I don't feel good, but I brush it off as though it were a side note.

The truth is, that we are SO EXCITED to be having another baby. We have planned this for a while, and the baby will be about the same age difference as my sister an I. Though my sister and I did not always get along, we didn't have the most normal of childhood either. We are better than best friends now. That aside, It was becoming clear that Daphne would love someone to play with, and we were ready to make another addition.

Looking back on Daphne's pregnancy, I can hardly believe some of the stories that I tell. Yes, it is true, that I spent an entire summer laying on the floor of our condo trying to "work" while making frequent trips to throw up. It is also true, that after extensive and expensive doctor's visits, it was clear that we were not going to find a natural solution. From weeks 9-20 I took Unisom to help with the vomiting. I lost 15% of my body weight because I couldn't eat. Eventually, the Unisom helped to curb the problem, albeit, not stop it all together. The best move I could have made was to trek off to Europe alone. I left when I was 10 weeks pregnant or so. I spent the first 2 weeks going around Italy alone and then I met up with the school and spent another lovely 3 weeks exploring more beauty. When I was 16 weeks pregnant, I ended up on Paros. I got along well eating souvlakis and chicken burgers until all of the restaurants closed and I was stuck making my own food. After throwing up constantly, I decided I was going to cut my semester short my 3 weeks and come home.

It wasn't much better at home, our house was soon flooded (just two weeks after I got home) and we spent until mid Feburary working around mold and staying in a hotel. I still did not feel good. In fact, I remember Jared and I both got the flu in the hotel, and someone had to go get dinner that night. We were arguing about who was more sick and who had to go get the food.

We were back in our house for a mere 2 weeks before Daphne was born. I spent the majority of it in bed watching Good Eats assuring myself it would not last longer. Jared made me a very requested meal of bacon and zucchini one day, just for me to throw it up. Something about throwing up that meal was so discouraging.

Daphne's 48 hour labor ended up unexpectedly as a c-section. After she was born, I had a hard 6 weeks of recovery, that was still accompanied by nausea and vomiting. It took a while for me to not be sick.

Despite all of that, I was determined to find a solution to not being sick again.

This pregnancy has me in a bit more of a normal situation. I am at home, not trekking around Europe, but somehow this is worse.

When I found out I was finally pregnant, I was happy. I was determined to eat right, so I kept a journal and made it a goal to eat 100 grams of protein a day. That went well until I started getting sick. I kept track and kept track until I was so sick that I was discouraged how little I was eating. Almost none of it was staying down. I stopped this practice on 11.5.08 when it was clear that all of the pills were not working well, and that I was going to be sick again.

I spent some time going to the doctor and reading pregnancy forums for morning sickness cures. I got a lot of advice and tried it all, and alas, I was still throwing up a lot. In fact, it was increasing.

And so, I gave up in mid November and resorted to using Unisom. Sadly, the usual 25mg does was not working, so I was doubling it up to 50mg. I was wary about using Unisom because I am wary about all drugs while pregnant, but it was clear that I wasn't going to survive unless I did this.

Truthfully, I am a very lucky person that taking Unisom actually works. A lot of people with severe morning sickness aren't so lucky, and a lot of them have to go on strong drugs, or live on bed rest in the hospital on TPN.

Some days I feel good, while other days I feel terrible. I tend to take the good days for granted and do the necessary housework that has to be done so that Jared doesn't give up on me and hire a fully time nanny/housekeeper. On the good days, I feel invincible like it is time to take less Unisom, like maybe I am actually getting better.

I forgot to take the Unisom on Christmas Eve, and I discovered how badly I needed it. I spent the entire day throwing up. I stopped counting out of discouragement when I had thrown up the 40th time. I couldn't make food or eat food. I was hungry and thirsty, but the more I ate and drank the more I threw up. I felt miserable, and it was CLEAR that this was not just plain morning sickness.

I got back on the Unisom after that, but it took a week or so to recover back to being able to function on a basic level. I took a trip to my sister's house for a week last week, and I started to feel good. I decided to try taking 25mg of Unisom instead of the regular 50mg. Both times I tried it, I was feeling terrible, and I threw up everything that I ate.

So here I am back home 15 weeks pregnant still feeling sick. I went to go grocery shopping yesterday because were out of food. I tend to feel much worse in the afternoons, so I headed to the store with Daphne. I had a list and was making my way through the list when I started to feel really ill. Looking at all the food that makes me sick makes me even sicker. I made it to the frozen foods aisle and somethings snapped. I literally started grabbing random things while muttering, "This will do, this will do." I walked down random aisles picking up random food despite the fact that I had everything on my list. When I got to the tea aisle, I was sobbing because I felt so bad, and I wasn't even sure that I was going to be able to make the short 5 mile drive home.

When I got home, I apologized to Jared saying, "I spent 80 dollars on groceries, but I'm not sure what I bought." I even surprised myself with what I had gotten as I spent the time to put it away.

Over the past two days, I was asked to participate in a study about Hyperemesis gravidarum. Hyperemesis gravidarum is a condition of pregnancy of severe vomiting. It is characterized by more than 10% of your body weight lost, severe vomiting (in excess of 5 times per day), dehydration, malnutrition. Hyperemesis gravidarum usually starts much earlier in pregnancy and lasts much longer than regular morning sickness. Hyperemesis gravidarum can extend past the pregnancy at times.

I was accepted to participate in a study that studies some of the various aspects of the disease. I was accepted. This may seem dumb, but I was sure that I was not in this category. Not because I thought it was bad, but I just thought it didn't fit. After looking it over yesterday and being accepted into this study, it is almost relieving to have some sort of an answer.

My friend pointed out that I won the jackpot considering that it affects less than 2% of pregnant women. They have no idea was causes it and no way to handle it except for various drugs.

My basic spirit is strong in the midst of not feeling well even though I feel discouraged every day when I throw up, or can't eat or don't feel like going to an activity I had planned to attend.

I feel most discouraged by the fact that most people don't really understand. Unless you have experienced this extreme sickness, it is hard to get a grasp on. When people tell me to eat more protein or to just take this supplement or do that, it is discouraging to think that none of those things work, and that additionally, people think it's just a dramatic morning sickness.

I will make it through this, and I will be OK. My fate is not as grim as Charlotte Bronte's who actually died from Hyperemesis gravidarum. I AM excited to have another baby, just riding a little more of a bumpy road than I was expecting to.

Thursday, January 08, 2009

A New Year

I told Jared on New Years' Eve that I had some resolutions and I wanted to know his. He kind of made fun of me, but then he sat down and wrote his own list.

I do not believe in "resolutions" per say. I believe in setting goals and working actively to achieve those goals.

I think that 2009 holds some exciting things for me. Here are the goals that I have set forth to accomplish.

1.) Graduate with a BS in Social Science this year. I am in my last semester, and with some hard work, I will finally have a college degree.

2.) Get out of debt. We are sitting now at just over 20,000 in debt. We managed to pay it down over the last year. Jared and I celebrated our 5 year anniversary in December, and we have never been out of debt. We hope to pay off that debt this year and release ourselves of that burden.

3.) Get organized. There are places in my house that always have stacks of things that "need to be done". My desk is the main culprit. I spent some time last weekend cleaning, and managed to have only a pen on the desk when I was done. We are going to invest in some organizational tools so that everything in the house has a place and is in that place. We even made room in the budget this month to cover those expenses.

4.) Get rid of things in our house that are unnecessary. We have things sitting around that were once useful but that have worn out their usefulness. I am going to recycle them into things that are useful or pass them on to someone who can use it. This includes transferring all our old VHS movies to DVD etc.

5.) Take more photos and videos of Daphne. I feel like there are periods of time that I don't photograph or video Daphne very much. I am hoping to make photos or video of things that she is doing at least 3 times per week. Additionally, I want to post on the blog more (3x per week) because the things Daphne do now often morph into other things and are lost forever if not documented.

6.) Have a successful VBAC (vaginal birth after C-section) with our next baby. I have worked hard to set up the perfect circumstances for birthing a baby. Daphne's birth was fairly tramatic to me, and though I am at peace with it now, I feel like a lot of spiritual mileage can me made from a lovely VBAC.

7.) Discover the direction of my photography. I have been shooting weddings and fine art for some time at a fairly intense rate. By taking the next wedding season off, I have the ability to reevaluate where my photography is going and possibly work on some projects of my own that will help to further my photography.

8.) Get healty. I am feeling ill with this pregnancy, and it is causing me problems. I have never been so fat (literally). I may top 200 pounds with this pregnancy, which is a bit excessive for a 5 foot 2 woman. I am going to get on the treadmill and try out some yoga to make it easier to live with my body and get it back in shape when I've got 2 munchkins to chase around.

9.) Expand my garden. Last year, I had a very successful garden. I need to tune it more down to what we will eat and in what quantities. My garden will be a supplement to our CSA, and the veggies I grow will have to be different than the ones we get from the CSA. I am excited to branch out and do a more focused garden.

10.) Expand my animals and get better at it. I had a rough year with the animals. The goats did well, but I did loose quite a few chickens, and tragically, two of my prized rabbits (within the same week). I am getting more educated about the rabbits and working to be a better rabbit keeper. I have put the animals in Daphne's name with a heard name that will help her to expand as a future 4-H member. We can register our animals and make more meat for our table and more fiber for our clothing that will help us live more sustainably. I love using animals to work in tangent with our lives to improve them. Being a better caretaker will make this whole process more successful.

11.) FINISH MY DIAPERS. Thew new baby has quite a collection of diapers, but they are not all even done. I need to get them done as well as the auxillary pants and other things I am planning to do so that when the baby arrives, I do not feel like I have a lot of undone projects.

If I managed to accomplish all of those things, we will have a fantastic day enjoying our family and our projects while we grow as people. Here is to a new adventure.

4.) Get creative

Saturday, January 03, 2009


Daphne's friend Copper gave her a little stuffed Care Bear for Christmas.

It is cute and it has a cloth diaper on it.

Daphne, of all the stuffed animals she has, decided to take a liking to this bear. She decided to name the bear Copper.

I caught her yesterday taking the bear in the car with a water bottle to make sure that the bear had as much water as he wanted.

It was very sweet of her!

Friday, January 02, 2009

Mamma Mia!

We got Mamma Mia on DVD for Christmas, and it seems to have been the best thing ever. Daphne and I have now watched it 2 times through. We have been listening to the soundtrack since September, so she really knows all of the words to the songs, and when I play it in the car, I catch her in the rear view mirror rocking out and singing "Gimme Gimme Gimme.." or some such lyric.

We finally watched the movie again tonight with Daphne, and she was literally screaming while they were doing the hen party. She was jumping up and down on the couch running around so excited.

And so, just like her mother, she is a huge fan of Greece, Abba and Mamma Mia. Go figure. Like mother like daughter.

Thursday, January 01, 2009

Happy Year!

Happy New Year!

I will post more about resolutions and such later, but I wanted to share our excitement about the New Year with you.

We started telling Daphne that people shout Happy New Year on January 1 every year, so she started practicing. When she woke up in the morning, she pulled up the covers and my shirt and said, "Happy Year baby" to my belly, it was very cute. She serenaded her daddy with "Happy Year Dadd-e" as she woke him up this morning.

So, we have spent the day fulfilling resolutions and yelling "Happy Year" at each other!

May your 2009 be happy and bright!