Tuesday, April 28, 2009

We've gone preggo-blog

Last week, I finally reached the point where I can no longer wear my fat jeans. It was time to stock up on maternity clothes. On Friday, I went to the Old Navy on State Street (one of the few in the city that carries maternity clothing), and for less than $100, I got a pair of jeans, two pairs of pants, two shirts and a dress.

My love for Old Navy has never been stronger. Neither has my love for elastic waist bands. Now that I've gone elastic, I'm not going back. Seriously, maternity or not, all pants should have elastic waist bands.

In other preggo news, I have my 20-week ultrasound coming up in a few weeks. This is the one where we could find out the gender, if we wanted. Right now, we're leaning toward not finding out. We've also decided not to tell people our planned baby names. Basically, I know that no matter what names we pick, someone will say something like, "Oh, I knew a girl with that name. She was a total bitch." Or, "that name makes me think of (blank). You should try (insert some horrible suggestion) instead." So, we're just going to make everyone wait until the name's a done deal, and then they'll just have to live with it and talk about how horrible our choices are behind our backs.

My secrecy led one of my co-workers to name the baby "Baby TK," which is really only funny if you're in publishing. But, the name's stuck, so I think that's how I'll refer to it on this here blog.

At work, it's now pretty common to hear people say, "I think Baby TK wants you to eat some of those leftover brownies in the kitchen," or "Baby TK wants you to get ice cream on your lunch break."

Like most offices, ours is filled with all kinds of baked goods and leftover sweets. It's amazing we all still have our teeth. Resisting these treats was difficult pre-pregnancy. Now, it's next to impossible. It's so easy to convince myself that because I'm pregnant, it's OK to eat junk food. But in reality, I'm only supposed to have 300 extra calories a day, and those 300 are supposed to be healthy choices. I'm doing OK in the eating-well department, but I also snack on junk food more than I should. In fact, between my six-week and 12-week appointments, I gained five pounds. I'm only supposed to gain between five and 10 pounds by 20 weeks. And at 12 weeks, I wasn't showing yet at all, at least not in my belly. Instead, those extra 5 pounds went straight to my butt.

Although I do have a good excuse for gaining so much weight. I was fortunate enough to not get morning sickness during the first trimester. Everything I read said the best way to combat morning sickness is to eat every two to three hours, so that's exactly what I did. And although I tried to make healthy choices, sometimes when I felt that icky feeling coming on, I just grabbed what was closest, whether it was those brownies in the kitchen or Doritos from the vending machine.

Luckily, now that I'm through th first trimester, I'm feeling pretty good, and I'm back to eating five or six times a day, instead of eight to 10 times a day. And, as of my last appointment, I had only gained one additional pound. Also, I'm now officially "showing," so I think some of that extra weight has moved from my butt to my belly. It's probably not obvious to people who don't know me, but for those who see me regularly, I have a definite bump. One of these days I need to get around to taking weekly pictures of my belly. Chris and I did this for about two weeks right at the beginning, then forgot about it. Hopefully, we're not so forgetful about stuff related to that bump when it emerges in five months.

Damn. Five months.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

10 Years Ago

Yesterday was my 10-years-toeless anniversary.

I meant to write some reflective post about how much my life has changed in those 10 years, or how grateful I am to be alive, or a self-congratulatory "I rock" kind of thing. But my current life—the one I'm living in 2009, not 1999—got in the way. Chris and I had to get up early for the delivery of our new fridge yesterday morning; then we both needed to get to the office early; I was super busy at work and didn't have a chance to even think about my blog; I worked late; got home; let out the dog; made dinner; almost forgot to take my prenatal vitamin; organized the new fridge; and then before I knew it, I was snoozing in front of the Cubs game on the couch.

Yesterday pretty much sums up my 2009 life: I'm married, I have a great job, I own a house, I have a dog, I'm pregnant, I'm still a Cubs fan, and most nights, I fall asleep on the couch by 9:30.

In other words, I'm normal. And although once upon a time, that would have been the most repulsive thing I could have said about myself, these days, I'm OK with normal.

So that's my big, reflective 10-year-anniversary post. I've written enough posts about meningitis and its affect on my inner psyche, what I've learned about myself, how I've become a better person, blah, blah, blah.

Today, all I want to say is this: My life is normal and boring, and surprisingly, that doesn't make me want to vomit.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

The Dry Lie

So, I have a little confession to make about a previous post. The truth is, I didn't really give up alcohol for Lent. Granted, I haven't had a drink since Ash Wednesday. But I actually quit drinking on Jan. 31 — the day I found out I was pregnant. I'm due Oct. 7!

As you can see, when I'm sober, I really can keep a secret. But keeping a secret in the age of Facebook and Twitter ain't easy. Especially if you choose to share the news early on with family, but not others. Women usually wait until they're 12 weeks along before telling people about their pregnancy because the rate of miscarriage is higher during the first 12 weeks. And although I don't mind if my relatives and close friends know about such things, I'd rather not broadcast it to all my co-workers, high school friends I haven't talked to in 10 years, or random online peeps from Facebook and Twitter that I've never actually met.

Making matters a bit more complicated was the way I chose to tell my co-workers. You might remember the little video and Web site I made last year for a video contest at work. With a big assist from my co-spy Tegan, we made another little video (embedded below) announcing my impending mommyhood. Finding a good time to shoot and edit the video took some time. So by the time I sent it out to my office, I had already started telling lots of friends and family the news. Worried that they might spill the beans online before I told work—and not wanting to email all of them to keep things under wraps for another two weeks—I ultimately resorted to turning off comments on my Facebook page and not using Twitter for a week. Not easy for someone who tweets about 10 times a day.

Thankfully, all that sneakiness is done now. I'm just glad that I don't have to lie to anyone anymore (at least, not about this. I still might lie to you about whether or not you look cute in those jeans, or your offensive body odor.)

But seriously, like I would give up drinking for Lent?

There's Something in the Water... from Sarah Wunder on Vimeo.

Thursday, April 09, 2009

The thrills of home ownership

Working on the house kind of went into hibernation mode over the past few months. Other than a few small projects, the only renovating we did this winter involved rekindling our relationships with Joel McHale, Don Draper, Liz Lemon, and Tom Colicchio.

But spring has sprung, and it's time for us to get off the couch and start fixing up our fixer upper. We're starting with the electrical because it's both the most annoying aspect of our house, and potentially hazardous. Half the outlets in our house are two-prong, most of the light switches on the second floor don't work properly—or at all, and a few outlets in the kitchen aren't actually up to code.

The electrician worked on the house yesterday, and when Chris and got home from work, we excitedly ran around the house turning lights on and off, and gasping at our new, modern amenities.

"We have 3-prong outlets!"
"Look! This light switch actually turns the light on!"
"OMG! A dimmer switch!"

And then, as if we weren't already stereotypical new homeowners, we promptly went out to Home Depot and bought ceiling fans and a lawn mower.

The electrician came back today to install our ceiling fans and put in a new outlet and water line in the kitchen for the new refrigerator we hope to buy in the near future. Although buying that fridge might be delayed due to some more thrills of home ownership. When we booked the electrician a few weeks ago, one of our front windows cracked in half for no reason. And then a few days later, we saw part of our roofing peeling back toward the back of the house.

But that's OK, because you know what? I can dim the lights in the dining room.

Thursday, April 02, 2009

9 Links, April 2

1. Hazardous hairballs. No matter where we are, Rosie has an amazing ability to figure out the exact spot in her immediate surroundings that will draw the most foot traffic, and then lie there. At home, for example, it's the spot between the living room and the hallway leading to the kitchen. If you're watching TV, and you might like a beverage, you'll have to step over Rosie twice to get it. I've yet to have a serious Rosie-related fall, but my mom tripped over her once while dog-sitting, and her shoulder was messed up for more than a year. Whoops.

2. One more reason I want my own sheep farm. Like most videos I see online these days, I'm never really sure what's real and what's not. But it's entertaining nonetheless.

3. Their fries suck. But I do love Steak 'n Shake's burgers. Although until I read this, I had no idea there weren't any in the city.

4. The Wallflowers? Chris and I recently heard a Wallflowers song on the radio and asked, "What ever happened to that band? They weren't so bad, but they just disappeared." Or so we thought. Looks like they're playing the Taste this year.

5. We're #1! Speaking of the Taste, and live music, and the all-around awesomeness of Chicago in general, according to some male-centered Web site, Chicago's the #1 city for men due to its abundance of good food, sports and cultural attractions. Because, apparently, only men like those things.

6. Plant a tree. Our yard has zero trees. (Although you'd never know it from the the 40 pounds of leaves I raked up a few weeks ago.) We do have a tree ring in our parkway that's currently home to a bunch of ugly branches that may have at one time been a bush. I'm not sure. Anyway, the master plan is to plant a tree there this year. But which type of tree to plant is still unknown. Chris wants a good climbing tree or a fruit tree. I'm fine with anything that'll fit in a city parkway, other than evergreens. (Although I had apple trees growing up, and they were really messy and attracted lots of bees that liked to attack my dog, so I don't know how I feel about a fruit trees.) I've been searching through this handy Web site lately for trees that grow in Zone 5 or 6—Chicago's right on the cusp of those zones. Did you know we could grow pear trees here? I had no idea.

7. Tamale Guy. I love this guy. I hope he starts Tweeting so I can follow him and ask him to come to my new 'hood more often.

8. No fooling. Some of these newspaper pranks were kinda funny. Some were just meh. I did enjoy the Twitter recap of Lindburgh's first flight from New York to Paris.

9. My love-hate relationship with Emeril. I really don't want to like Emeril. I find his shows really annoying, and he's very Flay-like in that he adds the same ingredient—Essence of Emeril, which sounds like it's his own personal musk. Ew.—to every dish. (For Bobby Flay, it's chipotle pepper. Seriously, every time I watch Throwdown, Bobby Flay just makes the other person's dish, but adds chipotle. Real creative, dude.) But as much as I don't want to like Emeril, for some reason, his Mexican recipes rock. For the past two Cinco de Mayo parties, I ended up using his recipes for fish tacos, salsa fresca, ancho chile flourless-chocolate cake and tres leches cake. Yesterday I found this poblano-cilantro rice recipe online that I might have to try out this weekend. So, maybe Emeril's not all that bad. Especially because using his recipes only involves reading them online and never having to hear him yell, "Bam!"