Looks like we’re officially expecting a little man this July! This also means first baby pics! Wheeeee!
I am notoriously bad at deciphering ultrasound images, but I could usually figure out the head and spine. Once the tech started pointing out the stomach and kidneys….. um, sure.
I just think this shot’s kind of hilarious. This is a frontal view of the face and if you look for it you can see the left eyeball, the nasal cavity, and the mouth open in a fish-faced little pucker.
Everything’s looking normal for the kiddo, but I do need to go back in another 4-6 weeks for them to check if I may have Oligohydramnios (ie Big Scary Word Thing that may or may not be an issue). In the meantime I’ll just be trying to drink water like it’s going out of style.
Now that we know the gender, I can finally get cracking on the nursery design! My current inspiration is a selection of Yago Partal’s Zoo Portraits. I picked up a calendar a few years back just to dissect it for the artwork (calendars are an awesome source of cheap art!). We had them in the hallway in our apartment, but I think they’re awesome for a baby room–whimsical, but not overly cutesy. It’s harder to find bedding to coordinate with art than vice-versa so the prints may possibly get swapped out. We’ll see…
Next week my dad and brother-in-law are coming to work on the nursery. All the drywall is up on the walls, but we still have to tape and mud (and sand and mud and sand and mud), and do the whole ceiling. It also looks like we’re going to have to route some custom casings, because despite the fact that the door and window casings in this house are the simplest design ever (apart from just a plain 1×6) they are impossible to find.* Hopefully my dad will save the day with his router! This also means we should have actual house stuff to show in the near future! Woot!
*We found something really close once, but despite the fact that it was the company’s standard back-cut knife, there would be $200 setup fee plus the cost of materials. For 2 doors and 2 windows (and only the vertical casings) that seemed excessive, so we’re DIYing this shit!
Me: I don’t think [brother-in-law] is going to take my crappy parenting advice. He was wondering what to do about an 8 year old who won’t stop asking questions, so I suggested “why don’t you turn it into the game of questions?”
I’ve been a little ADD this week for some reason. My best guess is that my energy level is finally going up and just hit me a little too fast to process. I actually started writing this post when I was supposed to be finishing up previous one. That one got posted a day later than planned and I kept adding to this because I don’t do Twitter.
There were some reps from Lifetime Fitness in our lobby at work today. They were advertising free seminars on sugar and carbs. I considered asking if there would be free samples.
I’m pretty sure Mort falls pretty low on the emotional intelligence scale. He’ll try and play with Schmutz, she’ll get all pissy, flatten her ears down and growl at him like she wants rip his throat out. And then he just stares at her in mild confusion and tries to play with her again. Aren’t you supposed to be able to understand the body language of your own species? It’s like if someone was brandishing a knife at me screaming “Die bitch die!” and I was all “Let me give you a hug and we can be besties!”
Every single stupid person I’ve encountered in the last week has been from Portland.* I’ve never been to Portland, but based on current experience I can only assume that it really needs to get its shit together. And maybe put more birds on things.
I want to quite my job and design non-crappy ceiling fans. Really.
Matt started to have a small freak out about having everything ready for the baby. I am so not used to being the calm, rational one in our relationship. It was mildly unsettling.
Against my better judgement, I got sucked into a political argument on Facebook. What outraged me the most was that someone replied to me and clearly did not understand how quotations work (she also missed my point entirely, but that seemed like the smaller issue). I was all ready to reply to her with just a link to the “Blog” of “Unnecessary” Quotations Marks, but then the thread got deleted. It was probably for the best.
Actually, any time I get sucked into a crazy political discussion that gets to the point where people aren’t even trying to acknowledge there are other viewpoints besides theirs and all I’m doing is repeating myself and I should just stop except now I’m pissed and have some irrational desire to have the last word even though I know it’s really pointless… then I think I should reply with a link to Wil Wheaton collating paper. If you want to steal this idea, feel free to substitute whatever random link you choose. It just has to leave people questioning “wtf just happened here?” If I get sucked into a real life discussion that deteriorates that far, I’m just going to scream “THIS IS HOW SOCIETY BREAKS DOWN!” and run away before anyone can respond.
I thought first baby kicks were supposed to be all soft and bubbly like “butterflies” or “popcorn popping” according to the books. I started thinking I was having crazy muscle spasms or something because it kept feeling like I was getting elbowed in the abdomen, only the calls were coming from inside the house. I asked about it was told, nope, that sounds likes baby kicks. I’m a little afraid of what this is going to feel like once the kid is larger than a potato.
Matt thought the baby kicks sounded adorable, so I started elbowing him in the stomach.
While sitting at the table I suddenly became convinced that I had broken a rib. Apparently spontaneous rib dislocation is skipped in all the pregnancy books. Instead they waste their time talking about butterfly-like kicking.
On my drive into work today I was behind a truck with both a “Flammable Gasses” and “Non-Flammable Gasses” sign attached to it. That’s a pretty serious mixed message.
Netflix emailed me telling me they just added a TV show they think I’d like: Ultimate Beastmaster. Given that I mostly watch nature documentaries or crime shows, I think either they’re really confused or this show has a way more violent ending than it sounds. It’s also possible they know about all those Saturdays I spent binge-watching Ninja Warrior marathons on cable.
I have a WordPress plugin that judges the “readability” of my posts. They’re rarely rated as “good” and it tells me I use the passive voice too much. Well, I live in Minnesota, we’re supposed to be passive. If you don’t like it I may have to leave a politely worded sticky note implying that you should bugger off. Please.
Facebook could be vastly improved if it gave you the following options when you choose to hide a post:
I don’t care what pages my friends like
I don’t care about people I don’t actually know
This is bullshit and I don’t want to see it
I just bought a pair of jeggings. Don’t judge me.
*If you’re from Portland, I’m sorry. I’m not saying everyone in Portland is stupid, it just seems like some sort of idiot virus broke out over there in the last week. You may want to take some precautions before you catch it too. Or before it spreads.
I had my second prenatal visit about a week ago. Kid still has a heartbeat which has got to make us parents of the year or something (don’t set the bar too high and you’ll always feel good about yourself!).
This past week one of the (male) cafeteria employees at work asked me if I was pregnant. I debated for a split second about answering with “no, I’m just fat” but decided not to be a total asshole. I’m growing as a person. Plus, this guy keeps me in french fries so it’s best to stay on his good side. I still need to ask him what he would have done if I had said no… It’s generally considered unwise to ask a women if she’s pregnant, but I suppose I was waiting there with my hand on my 4-month-belly looking like I was about to puke so the question wasn’t totally out of the blue.
Also this past week I had a major pregnancy epiphany. Technically I’ve got 2 hearts at the moment–I’m a Time Lord! er… Lady. Now where’s my TARDIS? I REALLY wish I had thought of this at my first appointment when we got to hear the heartbeat for the first time. The midwife probably would have thought I was absolutely nuts (not that she would have been wrong…).
And finally… we were out at breakfast yesterday and there was a soccer game on that Matt was half paying attention to.
Matt (watching an “injury”): Magic spray!
Me: You’re going to use that on our kid, aren’t you? They bump their head–magic spray!
Matt: That’s brilliant!
Me: We’d really just need a little spray bottle filled with water… I’m not opposed to this.
Matt: No way, I want the official EPL** Magic Spray!
Me: Good lord, I’ll make a fancy label for the bottle.
*If you never watch soccer, pretty much any time there’s an “injury” (ie someone pretends they’ve suffered extreme bodily harm in the hopes that the other team gets a penalty) someone inevitably comes out and sprays the afflicted area with “magic spray.” I think it’s Windex.
Well, at least I am…. literally! Matt and I are super excited to announce that we’re expecting a new addition to our family in July!
Which also means that this…
… is the future baby room. (and yes, this picture was taken today)
Will we get it done in time?
Will I give up and say “screw it, kid can sleep in a box, I want ice cream”?*
Will I whack Matt with a crowbar for treating me like a fragile flower?**
Will I have to trust Matt to handle painting projects?***
Stay tuned….. same Bat Time. Same Bat Channel.
If you’re interested in the details (if not, skip down to the next break, it’s cool), I’m officially in my second trimester as of today. Woot! According to different trackers baby is the size of a beet, a lemon, a cupcake…. or a mouse? Either that’s some tiny produce (and mini cupcake) or someone out there gets some ginormous mice…. I also feel like the produce comparisons are kind of weird because there’s such a wide variation in sizes. Twin Cities peeps, if you’ve been to Lunds and Byerlys you know there are lemons out there the size of naval oranges. Anyway… there’s a baby, it’s the size of a something and it’s continuing to get bigger so wearing jeans kinda sucks, even with a belly band thingy. I still maintain that leggings are not a proper substitute for pants unless your ass is covered. Luckily I tend to like tunic tops anyway, so I’m in the clear of my own personal prudishness.
I seem to have lucked out with my first trimester in that I never got bad morning sickness, although I tended to feel pretty gross in the evenings. Sources seem to say I should be feeling mostly normal again around now, but actually this last week has kind of sucked and been filled with day-long bouts of dry-heaving. Hopefully that will end soon (it sounds like 16 weeks is the sweet spot for the majority of people… please?). I know it could be way worse, but I’m still feeling ucky enough to be generally uncomfortable.
In terms of plans for the blog… yes, there will be baby stuff happening but I still plan to focus primarily on design and DIY. The current project though is obviously the nursery (I’ve always wanted to design a baby room!). As a first time mum though, I obviously have no frickin clue what I’m doing (I didn’t even hold an infant until my mid-twenties!) so I’m clearly not one to be doling out advice. Babies are exciting though so he/she will definitely be making an appearance here and I’m sure I’ll be sharing both my excitements and epic failures, because, let’s face it, life is filled with both.
And because I’m just full of news today, we have a more recent addition to the household as well.
We adopted a new sweet little boy cat (age 2-3 years) to hopefully be a companion for Schmutz. She’s still pretty pissy but slowly (very slowly) coming around. Mort is an absolute sweetie who loves snuggles and following me around… Matt might be a tad jealous because we seem to have ended up with another mama’s boy. He’s also spent a large part of this morning chasing his own tail so he’s a bit of a goofball. Mort’s very interested in Schmutz and we’re hoping she’s more friendly with him by the time the baby comes because that’s going to be pretty hard on our little furry diva too.
* Not gonna lie, this is a real possibility. I stared at a BOGO ice cream sale at the grocery store for a full five minutes before convincing myself I could in fact live without it. I was always told being an adult would come with hard choices.
** And then take a nap because hefting a crowbar is a lot of work and man am I tired.
*** Thankfully this sounds like a no since interior paint is almost all low VOC now.
About 8 and a half years ago I went out shopping for work pants. In one shopping area I passed a PetSmart that was advertising Cat Adoptions that day. I had moved to MN only a few months prior, was still bummed that I had had to give up my dog who didn’t handle apartment life well, and was still really missing being around cats (I had grown up around cats and am definitely a cat person). I figured I’d wander in, get some kitty snuggles, and be on my way.
Only I ended up leaving with a cat.
He was so chill despite being in a strange place surrounded by strange people. The lady from the rescue group saw me petting him through the cage and told me to go ahead and open the door. As soon as I did, he stretched up and gave me a hug. I melted.
I brought him home and named him Spencer. He immediately waltzed out of his carrier and investigated the apartment then picked a chair and took a nap. He was friendly right off the bat but it wasn’t until a few weeks later that he started snuggling. One night I woke up to find that my arm was completely asleep–he was curled up next to me with his front paws wrapped around my arm and completely blissed out.
Spencer was the most mellow cat I’ve met. He liked strangers. He liked dogs. He did well with small children. He even tolerated the vacuum cleaner (he’d put his ears back because of noise, but rarely moved). Every night he’d cuddle up to me in bed to sleep. He loved bread and he loved curry (I once tried sprinkling cayenne pepper on my plants to stop him chewing on them…. he thought they were even tastier). He loved having his belly rubbed… and wouldn’t spontaneously change his mind in the middle.
About 5 years ago I met Matt, we started dating, and eventually moved in together. Matt already had a cat when we met and we had to blend households. Schmutz was super social with people, but Matt was told when he adopted her that she didn’t really like other cats. Spencer won her heart anyway. The two of them would snuggle and play together, and Schmutz would groom the heck out of Spencer whenever she had the chance (and put him in a headlock if he tried to move away). Anyone who’s had cats know that blending cat families is hard and pretty much a crap shoot. Most people hope for an ignore-and-tolerate situation, but these two were buddies.
Then a couple weeks before Christmas our super-sweet, snuggly, floofy boy-cat started just picking at his food. We brought him in to the vet, they ran some labs and started him on an anti-nausea medication because their best guess was Inflammatory Bowel. A few days of the meds didn’t change anything but the lab work didn’t show anything abnormal so they had us start him on Prednisolone. We were hoping to see an improvement before we left for Christmas to visit family, but nothing really changed. He’s a super difficult cat to pill so our cat-sitter couldn’t really continue his meds while we were gone but we made sure he would always have plenty of food available to him.
When we got back home he was super skinny and really wasn’t eating so we hauled him back to the vet. They gave him another shot of anti-nausea drugs and some IV fluids plus an appetite stimulant and he seemed to be doing a little better that day…but then immediately went back to not eating. We started syringe feeding him a prescription, high-calorie diet but still couldn’t get a lot into him.
We took him back to the vet Saturday since he still wasn’t showing improvement. They re-checked his red blood cell count and it had tanked, so he was clearly severely anemic, but the blood work didn’t show any clear causes of the anemia, which the vet thought meant there was a strong chance he had cancer which was attacking his bone marrow and bringing his RBC count down. We had the option to do more tests and a blood transfusion…but the likelihood that anything would change the outcome was very slim and we just didn’t want to put him through additional stress.
We brought him back home. Snuggled. Cried. Matt cooked him some super-buttery tialapia which he even picked at a little bit. We later made an appointment with MN Pets who will come to your home. We didn’t want to stress him out anymore by bringing him back to the clinic.
Dr Heather came out today and was very supportive and patient. We went over everything we had done so far and what his labs showed and she agreed that it also sounded like cancer, but even it wasn’t he was too severely anemic for there to be a good prognosis (especially since he was already on steroids and they weren’t helping). There’s no way to feel good about this decision, but I’m pretty confident it wasn’t a bad decision…. even if it was an incredibly painful one to make.
I got to hold in my arms in the end and I hope he was aware of how much he was loved. I already miss him like crazy but I couldn’t bear to drag this out and watch him get even weaker. He was one of the best companions anyone could have ever hoped for and it breaks my heart that I had to lose him so early. I feel so lucky that he was able to be a part of my life.
Our current tree-topper is a star from the dollar store which is a little too dinky for our new tree, and also doesn’t seem to fit the floofy top spike of the tree, I love the modern-ness of this Himmeli-Style one! I think it’s made my holiday to-do list too!
Here’s a roundup of the cookies we made this year. Even though it’s probably too late for cookie-baking for most of you, you may want to file these recipes for next year.
We had got our first snow of Friday. It was nice because it was so late this year (and it’s been unseasonably warm , but also crappy because snow. I’m already done with winter (I may be living in the wrong state…)
At least the sunsets have been pretty lovely lately!
If you’re also getting snow and not thrilled about it (or even if you are) here are some amusements to help get you through the week.
Homesick Candles. They’re supposed to smell like your state, but WI doesn’t smell like beer and cheese with a hint of cow so I have my doubts. On the other hand, MN basically just smells like winter so maybe they’re actually on to something. I’m also a jerk and thought ND should have just been “unscented.”
Do you Twitter? I don’t, but if you do and sometimes find yourself running out of ideas you can always check out Yes, That Can Be My Next Tweet. It’s also Bloggess approved. (and if you’ve never read her blog, you really should… unless you’re super put off by random taxidermy. Then it may not be a good fit).
A friend and I hit up a local craft fair this weekend. If you’re looking for handmade (and green!) gifts, some of my favorite vendors were Made by Liz P. (there’s not a lot in her etsy shop at the moment, but look at her sales history to get a better idea of her full range), Tired Ol’ Belts, Raju’s Arts, and Nest Pure.
I’m taking the week off because this week off because I’m in tight with the boss (aka, Me) and Holidays are hectic (plus it’s getting dark early and I have things I need to photograph yet). Enjoy your Thanksgiving!
We may not all like the outcome, but I doubt there are many people out there who can deny that these Obama-Biden memes are the greatest thing to come out this election.
I indulged in some Retail Therapy on Friday and Michaels had most of their Christmas decor at 50% off! Some people may judge me, but Holiday Cat don’t care… partly because she thought pine cones and fake foliage might be edible. #festivecatisfestive I’m surprised this wasn’t a used hashtag yet and wonder if it will ever catch on. You might just see alternating pictures of a Siamese and white/tabby if you check in later because I have Plans.
I forget why Matt showed me this post, but it’s hilarious. And chilling. And probably reasonably effective birth control. My sister’s comment was “What is that man doing with [niece]?!” To everyone out there who has survived small children… ya’ll gotta be superheroes or something.
A lot of people are surprised that I have an Android instead of an iPhone. But here’s why.
I know this is a design blog, but it’s also a personal outlet for me. If politics aren’t your jam, go ahead skip over it. If you read it and don’t agree with me, fine, these are my opinions, not law. Right now I just have a lot of complicated thoughts and I think (or at least hope) I’m not alone. Also, I consider myself a liberal-moderate and this post is very reflective of that. You have been warned.
11/11/16 ETA: tl;dr Yeah it sucks, but don’t be a Trump about it
First I want to say that I am disappointed in a America. I did not want this at all. It also literally frightens me that so many people could support a xenophobic, misogynist, bully with no experience to be a world leader. That doesn’t mean that his supporters are all racists or women-haters themselves, it just means they were ok with it. They didn’t care.
I get that career politicians seem to suck but to go from that to someone with zero legal experience and a history of shady businesses tied to him? That makes no sense to me.
There was a lot of hate happening in this campaign on BOTH sides during the campaign. Trump was spewing hate, and the Dems were inciting violence at his rallies. Neither side was perfect, in fact they were both far from it. I’ve seen a number of Facebooks posts since the election that were essentially “If you voted for Trump I’m unfriending you because you are a worthless piece of scum.” While I am pissed as hell right now, I can’t support this attitude. I cannot encourage further division. I cannot tell people their political attitudes matter more to me than family or years of friendship.* Also, if someone really offends you, have a private conversation that’s not plastered all over the internet. Then if you still really feel like everything’s been ruined, unfriend them without making a giant stink about it. I.e, act like a goddamn adult.**
Right now I’m mostly pissed with the Electoral College. Hillary had over 300,000 more votes (and counting!) than Trump and still lost. This is why people feel their votes don’t matter because for three hundred thousand people, they didn’t.
11/11/16 ETA: I’m pissed with the DNC for giving us a lackluster candidate. Would I have preferred her to Trump? Definitely. Did I vote for her? No. Do I want to see a woman as president? Yes, but if anyone assumes that I will vote for someone just because she’s a woman, well I find that a little sexist. I actually vote with my brain and conscience instead of with my vagina. My personal complaint with Hillary was that she only seemed issues that were “safe.” That will never bring change. She also still supports issues that I am personally against. She just strikes me as pandering… and one of those groups she pandered to is women which irks me. While I care very much about woman’s rights (and minority rights, and LGBTQ rights) they are not the only issues out there and should not be focused on to the exclusion of everything else.
I’m also pissed with the media. We’ve been steadily building a culture of non-news news. It’s why I watch the Daily Show–because I know it’s actually supposed to be comedy. If I want to read a news site, I go to the BBC. That’s right, for me to read reasonably un-biased news I have to go to a different country.
But here’s the deal people. We actually having no effing clue what Trump’s going to do. This is actually a potentially good thing (I know, I know, bear with me). With politicians they have a clear voting record behind them. Would Hillary have kept on bombing countries we don’t really have any business in? Probably. Would Trump? No idea! Plus, remember that this guy was a registered Democrat at one point in his life. It’s entirely possibly that he talked big as essentially a marketing ploy (because day-um did it get him air time). I’m not saying that doesn’t still make him a giant asshole, but in terms of actual policy, that word is not law and would not be able to be made law at the snap of ones fingers. It’s sort of like parenting a teenager: you may not trust them and want to strangle them, but they’re probably not actually going to burn your house down.
It’s still hard for me to accept. I still have fear (lots and lots of fear). But if I don’t cling to some sort of optimism it’s going to be worse. I can’t believe the US is going to implode until I actually see policies that would lead to that legitimately trying to get put into play.
So this is what I propose. Let’s all try to calm the hell down about things that are now out of our control. Let’s try not to continue encouraging hate. Let’s also try to not go overboard with the bitching and moaning over the next 4 years. I’m not saying you can’t complain. Complaining is the true American past time (screw baseball). I’m just saying, remember the last 4 years of the opposing view point howling that Obama wasn’t a citizen and that the country was imploding when there was no actual evidence of it? It seemed insane! And obnoxious! Let’s not do that. Support change where you can like reaching out to your local or state governments regarding their future decisions. Remember to vote in your local elections (I admit, I kind of suck at that). You have a voice, use it well. Screaming insults at someone rarely makes people care about your views.
I’m not saying he’s going to be a good president and I’m not saying you ever have to like him (in all honesty I doubt I ever will). All I’m asking is to not be a dick about it. Also, don’t let jerks run you out of your own damn country.*** Canada’s cold and Mexico has Zika mosquitoes.
And remember, when they go low, we go high…. or at least make an effort. I mean, c’mon people.
11/11/16 ETA: Made a few edits because I realized I missed things. I fit them in where they should logically go (and marked them as edits). There’s also a new footnote. I have lots of Thoughts.
* Also, I’m reasonably sure that I wouldn’t have seen any of these statuses if Hillary had won. But guess what? The people these statuses are so pissed off at, their attitudes would still be exactly the same and the friendships would continue. Are people’s opposing views only ok when you can feel superior too them? Also, if you’re that for an issue, like say LGBTQ rights, than there’s a good chance most of your friends already either agree with you or are actually good people regardless. And family members… well we can’t change them, but you’ve accepted them for this long. So who exactly are these statuses speaking to?
**I pondered long and hard about whether I was being hypocritical by posting my complaints instead taking someone aside and talking with them…. but here’s the thing, I’m not personally offended by these posts. I get that people are pissed and want to vent… I just think this is a silly way to do it but it speaks more to the general temperature of attitudes at the moment than any one individual.
***Not gonna lie, a few drinks (maybe a bottle) in on election night and Matt and I were discussing his options for transferring to his company’s Canadian office.