Monday, March 28, 2011


Okay, I'm all annoyed.  As usual.  This time it isn't about anything important.  It is just that on the baby/pregnancy website I joined, they keep mentioning that an expectant mother should go on a babymoon defined as:
babymoon is a trip which is taken by parents who are expecting a baby; the term is closely related to “honeymoon,” the term used to refer to the trip taken to celebrate a new marriage. Typically such trips are undertaken early enough in the pregnancy that traveling is safe and enjoyable for the mother, and they are designed as a sort of “last hurrah” before the birth of the child. While parenting is obviously very exciting, it also marks a very major life change, and a babymoon is one way to mark this shift while celebrating the relationship between the parents.

Typically, a babymoon is meant to be romantic and luxurious. New parents typically find travel difficult, thanks to the demands of the child, and being romantic can be even more challenging, when both parents are focused on the needs of their dependent. Going on a babymoon can be a way for parents to reconnect before a birth, celebrating their love for each other and strengthening their bond.

Um, no.  It is falling in love with your baby people!  It is the smell of Tucks pads and baby necks, the feel of spit up seeping through your clothes and a small cluster of fingers curling around your thumb, it is the sound of that unique newborn cry and the quick inhalation as a hiccup rocks their whole body.  Aaah.  

I had the funniest dream the other night so if you don't like hearing other dreams (I don't) you can stop reading now.  I dreamt that I was in labor so I went with Phin to the hospital.  They didn't have childcare so I had to admit him, but within a few minutes they told me I wasn't in labor so I needed to leave.  However, I could not take my son since he had a cold and would have to stay a few days.  I knew I should've just gotten a babysitter!  So I came back later and they said I wasn't even pregnant.  I talked to my midwife who claimed that I had never been pregnant so I asked to see my chart which said that I had seen another doctor named Laura Bathandbody who had written on the last two visits respectively: Patient is as big as a house.  Patient complains about everything.  "See?"  I said to the midwife, "I obviously WAS pregnant when she saw me as you can tell so clearly by her notes.  "Well,"  she replied, "your body must have reabsorbed the fetus."  Which I thought was strange for being full term.  But when I woke up... I was still pregnant.  A common theme.

Now you can start reading again.  Some things said to me this week:

Lucy - Mom?  I don't mean to be critical or anything, I'm just asking a question because I really want to know, so don't get mad, but is looking at things on Ebay on Sunday the same as shopping on Sunday?
Me - (looking up from the computer screen) Yes, I probably shouldn't be looking at Ebay on Sunday morning, but (rationalizing) I was looking at these things earlier in the week and I can't help that she decided to end her auctions on Sunday, can I?  CAN I? 

On Friday as my husband and I got ready to go out to a concert.

Me - How do I look?
Loving husband - Um, you look pregnant.
Me - I know that!  That wasn't really the answer I was looking for.  Can't you say something nice?  So how do I look?
LH - Well... now you look really perturbed.

It's so wonderful to have full-time, live in reality checkers, right?  RIGHT?

Today my dad is having surgery so I've been thinking about him.  And it's my sweet boy's birthday (if he heard me say that aloud he'd scream, "Your sweet GIRL!" -- some slight confusion there).  We celebrated last night since Mondays are so extremely crazy around here so now he is upstairs playing happily with some new trains.  

Still searching for the perfect boy name...

Monday, March 14, 2011


Today I got emotional when I passed Hello Kitty in the toy aisle at Target, so I've spent the evening watching news clips about Japan.  I was avoiding it for a few days because I knew I couldn't handle it, but then I thought about how I have kind of regretted not watching any footage of 9/11, or other disasters, and it has been eye opening.  It is certainly different watching video, of the tsunami in particular, than it is to just read about it.  There is one that was so sad of people trying to run from the wave and everyone yelling, "Hayaku, hayaku!"  Heart wrenching!  I was sitting here alone and crying, not able to tear myself away, when I switched to some that were more positive from today.  Japanese people are so resilient and so completely civilized!  The story was about how they were sure they were going to have to do rolling blackouts across the whole country, but then didn't have to because everyone was voluntarily using as little electricity as possible; that everyone was getting right to work to help themselves and their neighbors dig out of the rubble; that there has not been even ONE incidence of looting in the entire country; that at the shelter they were being tidy and making sure to recycle (no one was being raped!).  I, of course, couldn't help but compare it to after Katrina and how horrible so many people behaved, and the most annoying thing I think I have EVER heard in all my livelong days was Celine Dion on Larry King crying for the looters, that we should just let them take all the jeans they want out of the stores because they don't have anything left.  What about the owners of said jeans?  What about doing something useful instead of criminal?  What about not being so depraved as to take advantage of natural disasters to give in to your most base instincts?  Deep breath.  I guess I should try to get over that.  I know it was simply a few bad apples and that most people were doing their best.  My point is, I think Japan will be okay and we can all learn from their dignified example.

Over here, I will pray for them and try to remember what things are most important -- because anything can happen in one life changing moment.  

Friday, March 11, 2011

and... it's not a girl!

Yes, I am in shock -- we're having another brother.  Why would I be so surprised?  I knew that it had to be one or the other, but ever since I knew I was pregnant, I thought for sure that it was a girl.  I have had about 8 dreams that I was holding a baby girl and only one that it was a boy -- and in that one it was just an ultrasound dream, not an actual baby.  We only had a girl name picked out and I have been buying loads of girl clothes -- who can resist the sweet things at Gap when they're 50% off clearance I ask you?  Pas moi.  Ella said that I can still put the black and white kitty cat mary janes on a boy, but I'm afraid that would be a little much, even for me.  As I lay back while she did the ultrasound I couldn't help but be thankful that I had decided to find out because I don't know how I would've reacted at the birth.

My dreams have been bizarre.  Last week I dreamt I was leaving my neighbor's house out their back door and it led to a dark passageway that got smaller and smaller until I had to crawl out of a small opening into their backyard.  When I stood up I was holding a beautiful baby girl.  I asked Matthew to get her some clothes and he came back with something way too big, but I didn't care -- I was just relieved the labor had been so easy.  In my dream a few days ago I was laying on the floor massaging a baby girl and repeating over and over, "I'm so glad you're out.  I'm so glad you're out."  But when I woke up the baby was not out.  Hmmm.

So now we're back to square one.  Matthew is in California so when I called to tell him the ultrasound results he was as surprised as I was.  About 30 minutes later I got a text saying, "I can't believe we're having another boy.  When Ella leaves next year we'll have more boys than girls at home."  So strange because we were such a girly family for so long -- three girls and one boy -- but the tides have turned.  The rest of my texts  were boy name suggestions including: Clarence, Philo, Clive, Oscar...  So the challenge is on.  All recommendations will be taken into consideration.  I'm fairly certain that Reginald is out of contention, unfortunately.  

Well, at least we can rest easy that the Smith name won't be dying out on our account.  Phew!

Thursday, March 10, 2011

let's hose it down

For the most part, I think I keep my house pretty clean.  I am always on top of laundry and dishes, vacuum and clean bathrooms at least once a week, force children to clean rooms and do one other heinous chore on Saturdays, and most difficult of all -- manage to keep the paper flare ups (mail, schoolwork) to a low simmer.  I am not so good at dusting, wiping walls, noticing random clutter, bringing bags of Goodwill home, and probably millions of other things, but to make myself feel better I have a macabre fascination with shows like Hoarders and Clean House -- now at my fingertips any time I want!  It helps me maintain my feelings of smugness and superiority which are so important to my self-esteem.  

Well, we couldn't find the Ensign magazine for the whole month of February so we kept having to print off different things.  As I thought about it, I realized that we didn't have any of the other church magazines for that month so either: 1. our subscription had ended without me knowing, 2. the postman really wanted to read them, or 3. they were all three still in their plastic wrap somewhere in the house.  Then one afternoon I received a phone call from the gas company that my payment was very late and the next day a note came in the mail that our water bill had suffered a similar fate.  What was going on?  I began to suspect that there was a whole stack of mail hiding somewhere in our house.  I looked and I looked -- for about six weeks, but it was obviously very well camouflaged and I was quite certain that one of the children was responsible.  It turns out that it had magically become completely invisible by being set on a chair in the dining room.  A chair!  In one of the cleanest rooms in my house!  In that six weeks we had had at least three different families and the missionaries over for dinner.  How did we not see a pile of clutter???  It boggles my mind.  And makes me want clear it all out and start over.

Thursday, March 3, 2011

parking blues

Yesterday I went to help with Lucy's class (success -- I remembered!) and, as always, had trouble finding a place to park, but eventually sucked in my van as much as I could and squeezed between another van and a driveway.  I slowly pulled up as closely as I could, just kissing the bumper in front of me, and my backside overlapped the driveway by about 2 inches.  When I came out of the school 30 minutes later I saw a police car pulling up.  I kind of smiled as I saw the bald and extremely overweight officer try to hoist himself out of his seat for a few minutes.  When he had finally extricated himself he walked directly over to my car and pulled out a little notebook.  I scooped up Phin and ran right over.  "Are you looking at my car?"  I asked in surprise.  "Yes.  These people called the police because you are blocking their driveway."  No.  I wasn't.  They would've had absolutely no trouble getting out of their driveway, if they had even wanted to, which they didn't, they were just being mean.  "And," he added, "you are touching the car in front of you.  Would you want someone doing that to your car?  Would you want someone blocking your driveway?  The people who live along this street HATE when people park in front of their house and the principal has told parents to be more careful about where they park.  Also, the law is that there should be 3 feet between your car and the driveway.  And there are other places to park."  I took a deep breath and said, "I pulled up really slowly so I don't think there was any damage done to the car.  When I arrived there was no other place to park or I would've parked somewhere else."  What I didn't say was, "This is a 90 year old school with no parking lot!  I bet the school was here when they bought their house!  They made a choice about what kinds of traffic patterns, noise, etc. they were willing to accept by buying a house in this neighborhood!  I am being a good citizen by volunteering at the school so often!  Where am I supposed to park?  And no I wouldn't mind if someone parked that close to me because we all just need to work together to fit in the allotted spaces!  I am most certainly not blocking that driveway!  I would NEVER call the police for something so trivial!  I have actually had someone blocking my driveway and I just waited for them to move, but I could have tried to find them, or written a note (gasp!) instead of calling in reinforcements for what so obviously is not an emergency!  I am pregnant!  

I guess he heard that last silent piece of my mind because he looked at me with my belly and my two year old and said he wouldn't give me a ticket this time.  Thanks a lot.  It is discouraging.  Grrrr.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

drats -- foiled again!

Tonight is New Beginnings at church so I changed my childbirth class, which normally meets on Tuesdays, to Monday night this week so I could go.  On Sunday I thought that perhaps I should e-mail everyone to remind them, but after 7(!) hours at church I dropped that from my agenda and just hoped that everyone would remember.  Well, almost everyone did.  You will never guess who didn't.  Yes, that is right, I didn't.  Not once all day did I even have a glimmer of memory, but instead lolled around doing absolutely nothing.  I would think about vacuuming and then think, "No, I should wait until tomorrow so it is fresh for my class."  Then I would consider wiping down the bathroom, but once again thought that I should put it off for one more day.  Instead of doing any household chores, I did yoga -- in the middle of the living room where I hold the class, then proceeded to leave all of the related paraphernalia laying around -- read books that weren't in any way related to my class topic and spent too much time on the computer, per my usual habit.  I even started making dinner really late since Matthew teaches a class, Ella was at dance, and Charles was playing at a b-ball game.  At 6:20 I started pulling some things out of the refrigerator and the doorbell rang.  Who could that be?  What a strange time for someone to be bothering me.  I go to the very darkened doorway, since I hadn't even turned on the porch light, peek out and what do you know?  It is the first couple arriving.  They were very kind and helped me rearrange the furniture, waited while I lectured the girls on how to feed themselves and Phin dinner and put him to bed, and were very patient while I quickly got out everything I needed for the class.  It was a little stressful, but it all turned out okay in the end.

I think I'm hopeless.
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