Wednesday, June 26, 2013


It's officially a roaster out there, people. Ninety-seven degrees in Denver today, though it's probably a bit cooler in Boulder and even just a bit cooler than that up at our house. Tomorrow it's supposed to be ninety-nine degrees. I'm working tomorrow, and I regret to inform you that the Humane Society does not air condition that place to my liking. Or to my pregnant liking, I should say.

Luckily it was a bit cooler yesterday so our house isn't too hot today. Tomorrow, however, is another story. That's why I'm glad I got some cool outdoor time in last night. David had to do some work on the trees we planted last year, so Haruki and I enjoyed a piece of banana bread out on the deck as he did so.

In case you were wondering, this is Haruki's official attitude towards the heat:

Yah, she boycotts it. She's pissed because she can't run as fast or as long when it's this hot outside. The good news is that all the little baby deer and birds she likes to catch don't move quickly in the heat either. Haha.

Today has been a pretty slow day, in part because of the heat and also because I have to work tomorrow and just like taking it easy before starting the work week again. I went to bootcamp, came home and showered, and then enjoyed a quick lunch courtesy of Whole Foods.

Afterwards I took a nap, from which I just awoke, and now I'm getting ready to go down to town to visit my friend Debbie, who had a baby boy last week. I'm bringing her chocolate, cold sparkling water, and a big batch of this noodle salad. I made a double batch so David and I could eat it for dinner last night too, and it's good--give it a try! I added parmesan cheese and roasted zucchini and squash too.

Later, hopefully it will cool off enough so David can go spoon his favorite girl out on our deck:-)

*Do you ever feel jealous of the attention your spouse gives to your pet? No? It's just me then, huh?

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Top Five Surprising Things About Being Pregnant

So now that I've successfully alienated or drawn you in, let's get to it!

As of today, I'm officially twenty-six weeks pregnant. I have two more weeks left in the second trimester and then it's on to the third and final trimester. To say that I'm excited is an understatement. Before becoming pregnant I suspect that I'd dislike being pregnant, and that prediction has certainly come true. Now, I don't have any serious medical issues and have had no serious medical complications due to pregnancy. However, that doesn't mean that I won't take a second to say that being pregnant--from not drinking beer at all, being told I can't ride my bike, constant nausea for the first sixteen weeks, exhaustion and overheating throughout, seeing my body change in a way that on a good day makes me highly, highly uncomfortable, feeling moody and irritable on a near-constant basis, wondering how the hell I'm going to get this baby out of my uterus without dying, and just generally wondering WTF I was thinking when I thought I'd take on the responsibility of another living being--has been less than fun. In fact, I'm counting down the weeks and just generally wishing time would pass faster.

(The good news is that now that the end is in sight I'm starting to feel excited to meet whatever is in my belly.)

So while I haven't been surprised by the fact that I don't enjoy being pregnant, I have been surprised by a few other things. Here are the top five, in random order. (Hint: that means not really in any order. Kinda misleading, that phrase.)

1. People give pregnant women a lot of props for doing _anything_ active. I mean, I know I'm probably above average as far as pregnant fitness goes, but man--every time I'm at the gym, in a class, taking a hike, people love to stop me and say how amazing and impressive it is that I'm staying so active. Really, it's like the fitness bar just got really low and suddenly people are just super impressed that I move myself around at all. It's kind of nice, especially on days when I'm feeling the pregnancy fatigue, but it also surprises me, since I really do think that pregnant women are able to do most of the fitness/activity stuff they did before becoming pregnant. (Recent research on exercise in pregnant women supports this as well.)

2) People open doors for me. This one I find strange. I mean, it's nice if people open the door, sure. But it also feels like they open the doors because I'm the cliché pregnant woman and there is an idea out there that pregnant women really need a lot of help. Now, if I was carrying a TV on my back I'd be telling a different story here, but opening the door to the DMV is definitely _not_ on the list of things my pregnant bad self can't handle. Also, if I ever get pregnant again, and have to deal with baby #1 while being pregnant, then peeps can open the door for me, since I'll prolly be loaded down with a hot pink stroller and pom poms.

3) People smile at me a lot more. This I don't really get, since it's not an intrinsically good thing that I'm gestating a human. I guess it just goes to show how much having kids is socially rewarded and approved.

4) The changes that happen to your body are _not_ necessarily natural. I mean, they are natural in the sense that they happen with pregnancy and reproduction and are thus a product of "nature" and its laws. But the physical changes, especially within the context of our current social environs, are not natural in the sense that they foreign, unexpected, and ultimately culminate in a female body that is not considered socially acceptable. In widespread media the ideal female body is angular, thin, slightly muscular, and generally devoid of body hair. The pregnant body is none of these things due to water retention, weight gain, and increased hair growth. While pregnant cave-chicks might've had "natural" bodies, the reality--if you actually look at a naked pregnant body rather than the image of a pregnant body in the media--is far from the norm that our culture associates with female bodies.

5) In addition to getting you ready for a lack of sleep and an existence that is centered around someone else, pregnancy also readies you for the constant barrage of other people's opinions. Yes, even people who have no expertise in pregnancy, pregnancy nutrition, or childbirth will feel comfortable telling you what you should be doing or how what you're currently doing is not ideal. I mean, does a seventy year old gentleman really think that he's giving me new information by telling me that I should be taking folic acid? Yes, sir, I am taking folic acid. Now eat your f-ing sandwich and leave me alone. :-) Tee-hee.

Finally, I wasn't going to share this before because it's pretty, uh, intimate, but the top, most, and really surprising thing about pregnancy is the changes in your nipples. Yah. I said it. It's not just the boobs that get bigger--it's the whole nipple. And, even worse, the color changes. Now there is literally a brownish ring around my pink nipples. Sorry for the tmi, friends, but this is truly one thing that I didn't expect. All the books said it was going to happen, but I'm a doofus and didn't really understand what "areola" is. My bad.

*Do you know what the areola is, I mean, really? Would you post information about your nipples on your blog? Me personally I'm kind of nervous about doing so... :-)

Monday, June 24, 2013

Errand Day

Yah, unfortunately I had to run a couple of errands and just generally take care of errand crap. First I dropped off my second pair of maternity jeans to be hemmed. Then I drove to two different DMV locations in order to change my name on my driver's license. Unfortunately, when I got to the correct location the wait time was two hours and nineteen minutes. I can't handle that, so I left and decided that I'd come back at some other time when it is hopefully less busy. (Like, not at the end of the month, for example.) I also mailed a package, took care of some bills, made some appointments, and returned emails that have been sitting around my inbox for awhile. 

But...I still had time for a movie after bootcamp, of course. Apparently I should soak up these "me" occasions since I won't be getting them when baby arrives. No problem there:-)

I saw Now You See Me, which is a thriller/heist type movie about a bunch of magicians. Sounds weird but it wasn't that bad actually. I grabbed hot bar from Whole Foods and proceeded to smuggle it into the theater so I could eat lunch during the movie.

That was mixed berries, the remains of a boatload of steamed broccoli, and a piece of tempeh. The tempeh was a bit too salty, but otherwise it was a nice lunch and a nice way to spend one of my days off. I still feel a bit guilty when I go to the movies mid-day in the middle of the week, but somehow that hasn't stopped me from continuing to do it.

Otherwise not too much is happening over here. I just ate a dinner of canned lentils and kale, and I'm about to eat some watermelon and catch up on Mad Men. I'm also going to check up on what happened today at Wimbledon. I'm pretty excited that Wimbledon started today and the Tour de France starts this Saturday.

*Do you watch the Tour de France or Wimbledon? If not, what sports events do you get excited to watch when they're on TV?

Sunday, June 23, 2013

Saturday Deck Dinner

Since I started working Thursday thru Saturday, Sunday is my new Monday. Unfortunately, lately I just feel like spending Sundays sleeping, which is, I hope, a side effect of pregnancy. I also generally feel like resting directly after work, though last night I made an exception so we could have our friends Jud and Erin over.

I know I already mentioned this, but Jud is David's BFF and is in town for another month or so, working on Popsockets stuff. At my request David made spicy seitan burritos for dinner, and we enjoyed them out on our deck.

We had a simple salad of baby kale, blueberries, and walnuts as well.

And while David talked and told stories,

I stared around at our pretty view:

Which actually got even more pretty as the light faded and the sun set.

I can't even imagine how pretty I would have found the scenery if I'd been allowed to have a beer with the guys...can't wait for October 1 and the chance to finally have a beer again!

Since we were all pretty stuffed we decided to take a short hike before moving on to dessert. On our hike we talked about the fungus that grows on burnt trees (we have a lot of it around here) and the certain kind of plant that is good for using when you need toilet paper but can't get to any.

Oh! Also, on our hike, Haruki found a huge pile of horse shit, rolled herself in it before we could stop her, and then proceeded to try and eat it. So, the lesson here is that even though your dog might seem _just_ like a human member of your family, he/she is not. I only wish this behavior would convince David to stop letting Ruki lick his nose and mouth.

Dessert was watermelon and a few shared cookies that David picked up at Whole Foods. A maple nut cookie and a few vegan chocolate chip cookies, I believe.

I stuck to the watermelon because I'd eaten too much burrito:-(

Mountain shot even later, after we'd been sitting outside and talking for awhile:

And now, after a family hike and a partial nap while sort of watching a stupid movie, David and I are off to town to run a few errands. Home Depot, Target, the grocery store--all exciting stuff. Soon I'll have a baby and going to the grocery store without an infant will seem like a dream come true...

*What would your first drink be if you weren't able to drink any alcohol for ~41 weeks straight?

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Road Trip

Hi friends, and happy Wednesday! It _is_ Wednesday, right? The last five or six days have been kinda fuzzy since my usual routine was disrupted. 

David and I spent this last weekend, up until yesterday, in Vail, Colorado with his family. My nephew Cooper had a lacrosse tournament there and David's Mom was able to organize a trip for us all. 

While Vail is only about two hours away from our house, the drive there still necessitated some road trip snacks:

I definitely recommend those hummus chips. I don't like potato chips but these are really tasty.

Once we got to Vail we headed straight out to dinner, though I'm afraid the restaurant was a smidge too fancy for taking iPhone pictures. I'd apologize, but in truth the restaurant and the food were pretty average.

The next morning found me and David sleeping in! (Hooray!) I've been caught in a pattern of waking up at six-thirty no matter what, so it was a special treat to sleep until eight a.m. After sleeping in and a quick breakfast, David, his Dad, and I went for a hike at Booth Falls. It's called Booth Falls because of this:

Really, though, this picture is a sad version of the real falls.

David and his Dad during our sandwich lunch break:

On the way down we got poured on, but not struck by lightning. So that's a positive, right?

On bizarre note, while hiking I learned that apparently a visibly pregnant woman functions as a kind of fitness "bar" by which everyone else can measure how out of shape they are. For example? We passed one group of people with a guy who actually said, "Great--now I can say I got passed by a pregnant lady." I'm not sure how I was supposed to take that one, but later I decided that I should've reassured the guy by telling him that this pregnant lady does bootcamp classes:-)

David and I had another sandwich lunch the next day, though this one was from a local sandwich/breakfast shop and we ate our sandwiches next to the river that runs through town (the Eagle River?)

My bad on the finger in the upper right corner.

After lunch we went to see a kayaking competition, which basically consisted of two kayakers racing down the river and trying to be the first one to hit several cow bells strung up alongside the river.

It was pretty exciting, and a nice way to spend a cool summer afternoon. 

Later I took a picture while walking through downtown Vail:

And then yesterday, on our drive home, I took a picture of the road outta town:

As you can see, it was an ugly weekend:-)

*Have you ever been to Vail? I have to admit that it's not my favorite mountain town. It's a bit snooty and doesn't have as much cute history or charm as Telluride or Crested Butte, Colorado. But, the mountains in the summer are pretty dreamy and relaxing no matter what, I say!

Friday, June 14, 2013


Look at me, peeps! Posting on a work day! WTF, right? Well, it's seven-thirty in the a.m. and I have about half an hour before I have to leave. And, of course, I have lots of crucial and meaningful thoughts as well as amazing photographs to share with you.

First off, the good news: I passed my glucose tolerance test! Yay! I'm thinking of celebrating with sugar--what do you guys think? I'm also _not_ anemic, which is kind of a big deal, since I have a history of anemia and it's just generally very common for pregnant women. That means I'm a non-anemic pregnant vegetarian, people! Um, excepting the handful of times I've eaten turkey or chicken since getting knocked up. In any case, whatever I'm doing is working, so that makes me happy.

I got the news about my blood tests on Wednesday, and it was perfect timing since we were headed to have dinner with friends at the Boulder Farmers' Market.

I stood in line for a long time here:

So I could get a taste of these:

Those are millet tots--like tater tots only with millet. And in case it's not obvious, they were tasty, i.e. fried:-)

Instead of having just fried millet for dinner, I shared these little cubes with our friends and had a tamale with beans and green chile for my "real" dinner.

Tasty and not unhealthy, either.

Luckily it wasn't too warm on Wednesday evening, though in case you haven't been following the news the weather (heat and wind) haven't been super cooperative to all the fires burning in Colorado right now. There is a really bad one in Colorado Springs and it's already been deemed the most destructive fire in state history. And, given our state's history of bad fires, that means a lot!

The good news is that even after a fire, the landscape _can_ really rejuvenate itself, as evidenced by the picture I took on our way home from the Famers' Market:

Okay so that's not the best picture. But! The grass has regrown! Animals have come back! (As evidenced by Haruki's latest deer capture:-))

So, the moral is: have a good weekend, friends. Stay cool, and not on fire.

*Does your state have a history of wildfires?

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Glucose FUN!

Well, except for in this case. The glucose challenge test, as they call it, is just about the only time that glucose is not fun. In case you don't keep up to date on Pregnancy magazine, the glucose test is a test given to make sure that my pancreas is still producing adequate amounts of insulin during pregnancy. If not, they diagnose me with Gestational Diabetes and either severely restrict my sugar/carbohydrate intake or make me give myself insulin shots. So, yah: for the test they make you drink a very sugary drink and take your blood, and all the while you know that if it doesn't go well then you could be drinking some of the last sugars you'll get until after delivery. It's a messed up head game, as far as I can tell:-)

I chose the fruit punch flavor. It tastes mostly like Hawaiian Punch, only there's something a bit strange or "off" about it. In any case, it wasn't as bad as I was expecting, but I definitely wouldn't want to drink it again. Drinking 50 grams of sugar in five minutes gave this mama-to-be a headache.

After drinking the "Kool-Aid," meeting with my doctor, and then having my blood drawn, I was ready for a real lunch. I headed to North Boulder for Breadworks, which is a locally-owned bakery/cafe. The truth is that I want to love Breadworks, but most of the time it's just "meh." Today was no exception. I got a big side of their summer panzanella salad

a tub of hummus

and a lemon seltzer water.

My baby is probably dying of boredom from the menu I feed her. Sometimes I think I should just hit up a Burger King drive-thru and down a flame-broiled something something just to change things up. But, that probably won't happen.

I will, however, enjoy something tasty for dinner tonight, since David and I are going to the Boulder Farmers' Market to meet friends for dinner. Cross your fingers that it cools down a bit before then...

P.S. Working tomorrow and Friday; will try to check-in on Saturday or Sunday!

*Pop or soda? And do you drink the stuff?

Tuesday, June 11, 2013


Holy pot pie it's freaking hot up here in CO. Is it hot where you are? All of a sudden it's really, truly summer. Part of me is glad because that means that after summer ends I'll almost be done being pregnant. The other part of me is slightly dreading more hot days since my maternity clothes shopping has been minimal and my current maternity wardrobe is a pair of jeans and the same two t-shirts worn over and over. And, in case you can't imagine, maternity jeans are not very cooling. That thing that holds your fetus in place while you run, dribble basketballs, or chase cars is just another layer of stuff that makes you feel hotter when your body is already cooking at a higher temperature due to the pregnancy itself.


Luckily, my mom likes air conditioning, and today I spent the afternoon with her. She's still babysitting my niece Ella and today I went down to her house for lunch and a shopping trip.

We went to the mall, where Ella was entranced with this little kid doing acrobatics.

I was just as entranced by our attempts to buy new shoes for Ella. It was just about the cutest thing ever to see the salesgirl trying to fit Ella's little foot into the metal sizing thingy.

I told the girl helping us that Ella's thighs usually aren't quite so plump--she must be retaining water:-) I really like plump baby thighs.

I also bought a new purse. I almost bought a purse from the Saks Fifth Avenue outlet, but quickly changed my mind when I learned that it was originally $570 and still only on sale for $240. I mean, it was leather, but $240? I'm barely mature enough to have a purse (i.e. instead of my school messenger bag); I can't fathom spending that much money on an item that I still feel slightly uncomfortable carrying around. Although, I guess I've spent that much money on this little baby I'm carrying around...hmmm.

She looks very mischievous, doesn't she?

After shopping and driving home, I decided to treat myself to a pedicure.

So sad. These babies are definitely starting to swell. If I'm already swelling and retaining this much water now how much can I expect to swell up by the time I'm finished cooking the baby? Luckily I don't wear stilettos as often as Kim Kardashian:

*How much would you spend on a purse?

Monday, June 10, 2013


It's going to be a near-wordless Monday, people. In other words, in lieu of complaining I'm just going to avoid writing too much today. Heh.

Mid-morning stop at the Social Security office, where I had hoped to change my name:

Needless to say, today wasn't meant to be my last visit to the Social Security office. It's a good thing, since I like bureaucratic time sucks:-)

Afterwards, an enjoyable lunch with my Uncle Mike, my Mom, and my niece Ella. I remembered in just the nick of time to photograph my lunch, which was a Greek salad with falafel.

I guess "in the nick of time" is actually somewhat relative. What's not relative? How much I can't stand red onions now that I'm carrying around this fetus. Maybe that's a good thing anyhow.

Even without the onions, I had a good time at lunch since this little girl sat right next to me and smiled like crazy:

And a view on the drive to lunch:

*What did you eat for lunch? If you work in an office, do you usually pack your lunch or go out? Seriously, I'm curious to know.

Sunday, June 9, 2013

Weekend Hike

Hiya friends, and happy Sunday! I hope you are all enjoying some relaxation and/or time with the peeps that you like the best. My day has been filled with some of that, and also with sleeping in a taking an afternoon nap. Working three long days in a row really takes it out of me now, though I suspect that I'd feel like I needed a nap whether I was working or not. Whomever said you stop feeling tired in the second trimester was apparently "just joshing." (Blech. Isn't that the worst phrase, perhaps right behind "cool beans?")

Despite being sleepy I did manage to take a hike with David and Haruki this morning, and I thought I'd share some photos since everything around here is going to wilt and die due to the upcoming heat we're expecting.

This is a picture I took while driving home from work the other day.

Pretty right? Things have really greened up since all that late snow and rain we got.

Ruki likes it too:-)

This was right before she plopped herself down in the stream. Guess it's better than the poop she rolled in last week. And, I might add, the smell on her yesterday after she found a dead baby doe and David let her carry it home:-(

And now I'm off to read a bit before David and I go to meet friends for dinner and a movie. David's BFF Jud and his girlfriend Erin are actually staying in Boulder for almost two months, so tonight is our first test drive on our couple relationship. We are also seeing the movie _Star Trek_. Heh. I'll give you a review tomorrow, but you can expect that I won't be seeing my new favorite-ist movie tonight.

*Have you or are you going to see _Star Trek_?

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Some Summer

Some Summer this is shaping up to be! I don't know about the weather where you are, but here in Boulder, CO, it's been strange. Today it was cloudy, rainy, and foggy all day. It really felt like winter again. Ruki celebrated by running around a lot, getting really muddy on our walks, and then finally rolling herself and rubbing her head and neck into some poop. She's done this twice recently, so we're hoping that she starts to negatively correlate that rubbing one's self in poop = bath time!!!

In other news, today was a good day because David finally returned from a business trip to China. Yes, freaking China. It's for Popsockets, of course, but that didn't stop it from being difficult to have him gone. Normally when he's out of town I really try to savor all the alone time. You know, plan out special movie nights with "treat food," etc., etc. But this time--I'm guessing because of all the pregnancy hormones--I was really not happy about him leaving the country for a week. In fact, I was downright sad and emotional about it, partly because it was difficult to talk much being that it was China and not San Francisco or something.

Ruki gets really sad when David is gone too.

I swear she looks at me with such disappointment when David is gone. Like, "What, You? Couldn't you be the one who travels for business?"

The good news is that David is back safely from his travels, and his trip to China was a success.

Here are a few photos that he sent me:

Apparently the main engineer at the Popsocket's factory was pretty impressed that David set up these forks and this match.

And with that I'm off to read a bit before going to bed early. I have to work 8-7 p.m. tomorrow, Friday, and Saturday, but I'll try to pop in on Sunday with a "makeup" post.

*How do you feel when your "person" is out of town? What about when you're out of town and away from home?

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Cereal Sadness

Bad news, my friends. Yesterday I was wandering around Target and I happened to go down the cereal aisle to see if some of my old favorite cereals might be edible to me now. Obviously I didn't think that Captain Crunch was going to be anything less than sugar + enriched flour, but I was rather disappointed to find that Cracklin Oat Bran isn't doing so hot in the sugar and nutrition stakes either.

I kinda figured that it was mostly healthy but with a little sweetness thrown in. Sadly, the second ingredient...well, made me sad:

I mean, it's not like I don't eat any sugary things. Since becoming pregnant I find myself saying "OK" to foods that I would never have touched before, either due at first to food aversions or recently due to some crazy hormonal-ness. 

But seeing sugar as the second ingredient is kind of like a conscience barrier. I want the cereal. And at some desperate other time I could find myself buying it anyhow. But most of the time, I can't bring myself to buy it because sugar is so high on the list. Geez, Kelloggs--couldn't you have added in some fillers that might've pushed "sugar" down to ingredient four or five? Seriously, that might've worked for me.

Meanwhile, dinners around here are still looking pretty boring. Last night it was roasted asparagus with a piece of a demi-baguette that I treated myself to the day before yesterday.

That baguette is actually a good example of something I would not have purchased before becoming pregnant. I almost exclusively eat whole grains--especially bread--but for some reason I decided that it sounded good and that I ought to buy it. 

In case you're wondering, there are two morals to this boring story. 

1) My eating habits have changed since becoming pregnant. This had made me think more about how I plan to eat after pregnancy--whether I'll lighten up a bit on my food rules--and it's also made me think about the stereotype of the pregnant lady who allows herself to eat garbage for the entire nine months and consequently gains seventy pounds. I have not gained seventy pounds, or anything remotely close to that, but as I mentioned I have found myself eating foods on occasion that were previously "off limits." It's funny, because it's not like I just get in a "I don't give a damn" mood, but rather, I just don't feel myself getting quite as stressed about it. Perhaps it's because I'm stressed about other things, like WTF am I going to do with a newborn?

2) One thing that I do stress about a bit lately is sugar, the reason being that I'm taking my glucose test for gestational diabetes next week. Basically that means that they'll be testing to see whether my pregnant body is dealing with sugar in a healthy way; if it's not, I'll be on a diet from hell from here until baby turns up on the outside. My sister in law developed gestational diabetes and couldn't even have cake at her baby shower. That is just wrong on a lot of levels, so let's keep our fingers crossed for me...mmmkay?

*Are there any foods that some annoyingly conscientious part of you won't let you buy? What cereal did you eat while growing up?