Friday, November 30, 2007

Being Supportive

See below. If you think I'm being supportive now, just wait until she goes into labor! (last names and email addresses have been removed to protect the innocent - I've kept her spelling intact for the sake of authenticity.)

From: Shawna
Sent: Thursday, November 29, 2007 2:56 PM
To: Amy
Subject: Gasp!!


I ran to Erins cube in emergency situation to have her serve the lines and she thinks they coud be streatch marks. She had lotion I have used the entire tube and they are stil there. My hate for lotion is gone. I hope it is a rash

From: Amy
To: Shawna
Sent: Thursday, November 29, 2007 3:01:20 PM
Subject: Gasp!!

Ooooh! Can I come over tonight and look at them? I bet they are stretch marks! I love it.

That’s what mine looked like – I never got the huge stretch marks just tons and tons of little red lines, and then after you have the kid the redness goes away but the lines don’t and your stomach resembles the texture of cottage cheese wrapped in a fabric bag.

How exciting!

From: Shawna
Sent: Thursday, November 29, 2007 3:12 PM
To: Amy
Subject: Gasp!!

Just so you know your not helping.

From: Amy
Sent: Thursday, November 29, 2007 3:18 PM
To: Shawna
Subject: Gasp!!

Hey, I’m just soaking in all the exciting aspects of your pregnancy.

Just wait until you’re walking around and you keep feeling like something is on top of your butt- Like a backpack that’s riding too low and smacks on your butt every time you take a step – and then you look back there and realize that there is no backpack – it’s just that your ass is so big that you can actually feel it moving when you walk.


Turns out it was just a rash that she got from the lube they put on her belly earlier that day to check the heartbeat. How disappointing really.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

I'm a mother, it's my job to over-react

Gwen fell down tonight and let out a blood curdling scream. I rushed over to find her entire bottom lip covered in blood and noticed that she was bleeding from inside her mouth as well. So I did what every responsible, and mature mother would do - I panicked and called my husband.

Now to me it looked like her bottom tooth had punctured her lip. There was blood inside and outside the lip. I could see a gash on both the inside and outside and keep in mind here that the kid was screaming at Banshee decibal levels. Tears and blood and bodily fluids were flying everywhere and most of them belonged to Gwen.

So Matt's on his way home, I call Shawna and ask her if her Matt (Lord, why couldn't we find husbands with different names? From now on I shall refer to Shawna's husband as Freddie - seriously he looks just like Freddie Prinze Jr. except that I think Matt's eyebrows are more niceily manicured, but Matt can never keep his eyes open in a photo so Freddie's got one up on him there.)

Anyway, I ask if Matt (I mean Freddie) can come over and pick up Aaron and take him to their house while I take Gwen to the 24 hour clinic or the ER or something. My Matt is winging his way home from work and all of a sudden the kid is fine. The bleeding has stopped, she's still a little clingy but otherwise seems to be okay. I'm now able to finally get a good look at the wounds and when Freddie gets there he confirms my new theory that she in fact did not puncture her lip with her own tooth. True she does have a nice gash but the tooth did not go through the lip and I've completely over reacted.

Freddie was a complete prince - sorry, couldn't resist that pun - and ran to the store to get some baby orajel to relieve any future pain, and did a fabulous job of putting me at ease. He's going to make a fabulous Daddy, Shawna. He even brought some gummy worms back for Aaron - so sweet!

Matt came home from work, looked over the situation, put me at even more ease and then headed back to work after kissing me on the forehead and shrugging as if to say "you're such an adorable yet simple-minded wife".

So all in all I felt like an idiot, but an idiot with an excellent support system and I'm very grateful for that.

Here are some pics of the wounds. Sure they don't look like much but this is after I cleaned up the gallons of blood!
See the bloodstains on the shirt! And this photo below would be more impressive if it was in focus, but I was lucky to get it at all since the inner lip of a 11 month old is not very photogenic.

Monday, November 19, 2007

Salad Tongs and Prune Juice

Saturday I noticed Gwen assuming her standard all fours pooping position and as I’m making a mental note to pass this one off on Matt since he’s watching football and I’m doing dishes, my inner musings are interrupted by her sudden crying.

Now as a parent you learn the cries. There’s the “I’m tired but don’t really want to sleep” cry, the “My brother has just taken my toy and/or hit me in the head” cry, the “There’s really nothing wrong with me but I feel like crying” cry (my personal favorite), and then there’s the dreaded: “Something is seriously wrong and I’m freaked out and in a lot of pain” cry, and this was the one I was hearing.

Now she’s been constipated the last week or so and her stools have been pretty solid so I anticipated that perhaps she was having some difficulty – and boy was she. Picture this. We’ve got her on the living room floor. I’m stroking her forehead and cooing in an effort to calm her. Matt’s got the back end and he’s trying everything to get this massive turd out of the poor girl. He’s bicycling her legs, squeezing her butt cheeks, trying to grasp the thing (with a wet wipe on his hand of course). Several scenarios are running through my head – should we take her to the ER? No, too drastic, how about some salad tongs? – if we could just get a hold of it we could pull it out. No too dangerous, plus then I’d have to buy a new pair of salad tongs, and as I’m just deciding that the best option is to run a warm bath and have her soak in it in the hopes it would break up the poop, Matt yells, “Here it comes” and sure enough it was starting to move. I’m holding her hand saying “push, honey push” Matt’s guiding it out, wet wipe in hand and when the entire load was finally out, all three of us shared an exhale of relief and satisfaction.

It’s almost a pity that she’s too young to remember it because if she’s unfortunate enough to have inherited my narrow pelvis and birth canal, it may have been the closest experience to child birth she’ll ever have.


Ah the holiday season is upon us and besides the general dread and seemingly endless debates on whose house we’re going to for what holiday and on what day, I find myself expending most of my mental energy on deciding what gifts to purchase for people.

I won’t punish you with the details of the impossible task of picking out something for my mother, the woman who has the contents of a small shopping mall in her home. Instead I’ll try to capture something of the great toy debate. And keep in mind that it’s compounded by the fact that Aaron’s birthday is right after Thanksgiving and Gwen’s is at the beginning of December so I have birthday and Christmas gift giving to ponder.

I love my children very much and a sad consequence of having a mother with the contents of a shopping mall crammed into her house is that I’ve been taught to express love through gifts. Shopping and “new stuff” equaled happiness in my childhood home (there’s no blame there – my mother is fabulous and in the grand scheme of things she could have passed down a much worse legacy – like alcoholism or something even more dreaded like Catholicism).

Anyway, I find that most of my time is spent on trying to decide whether or not to purchase the Diego Safari Playset or the Hot Wheels speed and crash racetrack, or perhaps wouldn’t it be great if we got both for him – he’s a good kid he deserves it – and we did just refinance the house and all . . . You see what I mean here. Then at some point I stop and think that this is the kid who uses a green plastic dealer’s visor from a Texas hold’em set as a firefighter’s gas mask, and can envision the couch cushion as a mountain, a boat, a slide, a race car, and a monster truck. Does he really need the $34 Diego Safari set or wouldn’t he be just as content with a $2 Diego figurine and some cheap elephants from the dollar store? Is he going to need therapy at some point in time because he didn’t receive the officially licensed Pixar Cars set of Shake and Go racers?

Of course not, and yet I want to get these things for him – why? Shouldn’t we curb the spending and set aside some money for his future – perhaps for his college education? Sure that’s what we probably should do but we’re not going to. Why? Because of the look. You know what I mean. That look a kid gets when he gets a toy that he’s really excited about. The wide eyes, the eager hands grasping at it, the voice that shoots up an octave when he says “WOW”. We all remember that feeling from when we were kids and we just want to recreate that for our kids. Is that so bad? And is it so bad that somewhere in my psyche, seeing that look on his face is proof that he knows that I love him with all of my heart and soul? Is he going to have that same look when he’s 19 and I tell him I’ve saved up enough to pay for a semester of his college education? I don’t think so.

So, the moral of the story is that I’m going to try and find a happy medium between my “proving the depth of my love by the amount of gifts I give you” tendencies, and the cheapskate part of me who is convinced he’d be thrilled with 5 things from the Dollar Store.

Now if you’ll excuse me I have to check on the shipping status of some action figures we've purchased for the 38 inch Rescue Heroes Mountain Command Center with Voice Tech capability.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

I like your sweater - Oh never mind that's just your arm hair.

As I'm sitting here, my upper lip covered in Nair, I started thinking about a gal at work. Now I don't know what her name is. She doesn't work in my department, but works on my floor, and she's got the hairiest arms I've ever seen. And not just the hairiest arms on a woman, I mean the hairiest arms of any human being I've ever seen. Okay, maybe not as hairy as Robin Williams, but pretty close.

It's dark and thick and coarse and every time I run into her in the bathroom or in the hallway, I'm just half tempted to slip her a bottle of Nair because seriously, something should be done about the ape arms. Thank goodness she's pregnant now because some of us were seriously contemplating on whether she might actually be a man with a really good plastic surgeon.

Now I'm not one to judge. Okay, maybe yes I am, but I feel that I have some expertise in this area. See I have some pretty extensive arm hair myself. However, I've made a careful comparison with other women and determined that while the quantity is high, the texture and color is light enough that I can get away with it. Or am I fooling myself? I should see if there's enough Nair left in the bottle for my forearms.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Round 3 - Gwen

So as many of you may know, I've been struggling - well pretty much for the duration of her life - to get my daughter to sleep in her crib. This kid could be in such a dead sleep that I've got to check her pulse just to make sure she's alive and yet the very second she touches the crib mattress she's wide awake, kicking and screaming. If it wasn't my kid it might be downright fascinating and entertaining.

However, I had recently determined that I'd had enough. The kid is almost one, and she's really starting to sleep well through the entire night without waking. I was convinced that if I could just get her to fall asleep in the crib that I'd be fine. My new strategy was to move the crib into Aaron's room. She loves to play in there and I thought if the crib was a visible part of that room she might become more comfortable with it. It would no longer be a cage in the corner of mommy and daddy's room.

Night one, was Sunday night. I laid her in the crib and she screamed, and screamed, and screamed. I went in, stood next to the crib and stroked her back. We turned on the white noise and she actually fell asleep for about 10 minutes before getting up and wailing again. I left the room and let her cry for quite some time before Matt had had enough. Round one - Gwen.

Monday night, I placed her in the crib when I was getting Aaron ready for bed, she screamed of course. I took her out while I was reading books to Aaron and she played on the floor for a while. Put her back in bed, and laid down next to the crib - didn't look at her or anything and she was asleep in 10-15 minutes. And she slept through the entire night. I heard her cry and stir a little around 1 a.m. but she went right back to sleep. She slept from about 11 pm to 9 am!! Round Two - Momma. And let me just say when I woke up that following morning it was like there was suddenly 2 suns - the world was so much brighter! It was fabulous. I hadn't been that happy since Prince started calling himself Prince again!

Last night I followed the same routine as Monday and she fell asleep in about 20 minutes. However, she awoke at 2 a.m. and cried for a good 5-10 minutes and Matt brought her into bed. I was too tired to argue. Round 3 - Gwen.

Now you may be wondering how Aaron's taking the whole thing and he's been great. First of all he's really cute because he sings Twinkle Twinkle Little Star to her, even though she can't hear it because she's wailing at the decibal level of a small jet plane. The other great thing is that this kid can sleep through a five alarm fire. I mean, once he falls asleep she can wail in there until her head is on the verge of exploding and he doesn't even stir. Makes me a little nervous in case there ever was a five alarm fire.

Anyway so the battle royale continues. I'll keep you posted.

Sunday, November 11, 2007

I am woman, watch me pee - standing up!

Now if you'll recall from a previous post, Aaron had some questions as to why Momma sits down to pee and I had informed him it was because he had a penis and I did not. Well I think some of it is starting to sink in because the other day in the bathroom - a public restroom of course - he says - in his loudest toddler voice - "Momma I stand up to pee because I have a penis and you sit down and pee with your butt." Now I was proud that he was getting it but I wanted to correct him and tell him the proper term for what Momma uses to pee, and shockingly enough I didn't know what to say. I was going to say vagina, but that's not really what I pee from now is it. I mean I wanted to be correct here. So I said, "Momma pees from her urethra" though I wasn't realy sure if that was the proper thing to say.

So I asked Matt what the proper term was and he said to use "vagina" and when I voiced my concerns on the accuracy of that he said, well isn't it your ulva, and I'm like no, are you thinking of the uvula? that thing that hangs down in the back of your mouth? To which of course he gave me the "I'm not an idiot" look, and rightfully so, sorry dear.

I thought I'd do a little online research to find out what term I should use, and possibly get some insights on how other parents tackle the body part discussions with their kids. My results indicated that I was correct - and urethra, anatomically speaking, is accurate however men have a urethra too and plus it's hard to say so most people use the term "vagina" oh and the Vulva is the catchall term for everything - vagina, labia etc. just in case anyone was wondering.

However, in my anatomical search I stumbled across a link for this site about how women can pee standing up using a device. I mean at first I thought it was a joke, but then lo and behold - there it was. An entire world opening up to me. A world where a woman could write her name in the snow and make use of that fabulous flap on the front of flannel pajama pants.

Now of course I had to research even further and I found several sites about this phenomen. Here are a few links.

The P mate:
It's basically a fancy cardboard box with a wax coating - like those chinese take-out boxes" - that acts as a funnel.

The Sweet Pee:
Now this one looks absolutely terrible. I mean it's like a foot long and they recommend you use it facing away from the toilet. Must have been invented by a man - trying to keep us squatting! Plus they're too discreet to show a picture of the actual product anywhere on the site, just these illustrations. If someone's willing to use a funnel to piss in a toilet, I don't think they're going to mind seeing an actual picture of it on the screen.
The Travelmate:

Which is my personal favorite because they sell an optional carrycase - you can tell everyone it's a pair of sunglasses. The other reason it's my favorite is because it looks the most like an actual dick and if you're gonna use something like this then I say go all the way. It's only 6 inches long too which is both discreet and realistic.

Now as great as I think these products are, I couldn't help but notice a faint sound from within. It was my inner feminist and she was screaming, "what is this? Penis envy? How is this furthering the cause? Instructing women to don faux penises in order to "pee like a man" why can't we pee like a woman - just do it standing up!" And that's when I found this site:

which details the proper technique for a woman to pee standing up - with the use of only her hand. We can do it ladies, and here are the instructions, with some useful insights from real women who have mastered the skill.

I was a little disturbed though from some of the comments from women who said they loved that they don't have to stand in line for the ladies room anymore. They just go in to the mens and use the urinal. Now I don't know first of all that I would have the guts for that and second of all, I don't know that I'd really recommend it for anyone who's single. I mean imagine trying to get a guy to take your number when you're very first encounter was in the mens room and involved a conversation about the lack of urinal cakes.

I think it's a skill that could come in handy. I'm thinking I should work on it - though obviously I wouldn't need to do it at home, because my toilet is clean for one, and it would really confuse the kid then, but imagine the rumors that could get started at work when people start noticing that my feet are always facing towards the toilet. Oh, and think how it would come in handy when I have to pee when I have Gwen with me. I could hold her in one arm and pee with the other without having to put her down and watch her play the "how many bacteria-infested surfaces can I touch and lick" game.

Thursday, November 8, 2007


So I've had this recurring headache for the last 3 weeks. I don't know if it's stress induced or what and I'm not usually such a baby about these things but it's bad. Like curl up in the fetal position bad, like I can literally feel the base of my cranium pulsating like some science experiment gone wrong bad.

I don't want your advice, I don't want your pity, I just want you to be aware so that if this is my last post it's because I've finally taken a screwdriver to my temple in an attempt to make an escape hatch for whatever creature is trying to claw its way out of my brain.

Monday, November 5, 2007

Web addicted

So I've had so much fun with this blog and with my family blog that I felt I needed to create even more, which is why recently things have gotten a little slower on this blog. Not to fear though, now that the initial setup is in place for the other ones I should be able to contribute more time here. Somewhere 2 people are mildly thrilled about that I'm sure.

Anyway, I'm going to put links to my 2 new sites in the links section of this blog. One is another Blogger blog that I'm dedicating to my craftier side, and the other one is a website I put together (from one of those free website places so don't be too impressed) for the Tacky Treasure Gift Competition that Shawna and I have every year. I've been having lots of fun with that one and hope you enjoy.

Friday, November 2, 2007


My best friend is pregnant with her first child, and I’ve been fairly low key about it, except for the actual moment I found out and almost inadvertently threw her 10 feet into the air in my excitement.

Since then I’ve managed to keep my excitement fairly contained simply because I know that 9 months can be a heck of a long time, especially when you’re anticipating something this much and I don’t want to get myself or her overly excited this early. However, she’s starting to show a little bit now and every time I see her and that blossoming belly, somewhere deep in my psyche, right next to my repressed sense of self worth, is a tiny little version of me jumping for joy and anticipating the arrival of a little soul that I will love just as much as I love her – and that’s quite a bit.