28 September 2010

24 September 2010

Waiting for a Lovely Lady

My due date has come and gone. I am finished with work. My little lady has been moving around like crazy, but she's not moving OUT! She's one day late. And I'm beginning to really wonder what she looks like and what it will feel like to hold a newborn again. Please come soon, my lovely lady!

20 September 2010

Monday Morning

It's Monday morning and I'm back at work. My maternity leave starts on Thursday. I was hoping that it would start much sooner (like, maybe two weeks ago), but, alas, here I am.

I can't complain though. We had a really fabulous weekend with Benny. We also managed to get more done on the house. For the past three weekends, I've cleaned like crazy. I don't want to have a new baby and a dirty house. My mom reminded me that the baby will probably come on Thursday, just when the house is at its dirtiest. She's probably right. But, if she decides to come today, the laundry will be done, the floors mopped, the furniture dusted, and so on. We put all of the curtains up - even curtains in the basement! Nate said, "Wow, it's really starting to feel like a house!" And the house is looking great. We still have a lot do, but the house is most certainly baby ready.

We spent Saturday at the mall (exchanging curtains and whatnot). I love that we can bring Benny somewhere new and it's like a whole new adventure to him. There were some cars INSIDE the mall and his world was flipped upside down! We had our neighbors over for dinner and went to bed early. Yesterday Benny and I cooked breakfast for Nate and then read books, watched movies, and generally relaxed while Nate washed and waxed both cars.

And now we wait. And wait. And wait. At my appointment on Friday, the doctor mentioned inducement. I wouldn't get induced until absolutely necessary - two weeks after my due date. That means this baby could stay right where she is for another two and a half weeks. I shudder SHUDDER at that thought!

18 September 2010

Book Review: The Penelopiad

An amazing thing happened yesterday... Benny and I made a trip to the library. We haven't visited the library all summer. I have no excuse for this other than we were busy all summer working in the house. But that's not really an excuse.

Benny loves the library and so do I. There's a local library within walking distance. It doesn't have the best selection of books, but it does have enough to excite Benny. After I rooted around for awhile, I found some book selections for me. I checked out Margaret Atwood's The Penelopiad and Jane Smiley's Good Faith. I am obsessed with Atwood.

I started reading The Penelopiad yesterday when Benny was napping. I was up for a couple of hours last night (a common theme in my life now), so I ended up finishing the book!

The Penelopiad is a version of The Odyssey, but in classic Atwood form, it is told through the eyes of Penelope, Odysseus's wife. I read The Iliad and The Odyssey way back in high school and I don't remember much about them. The closest reference I have is the movie O Brother, Where Art Though? by the glorious Coen Brothers. So, many of Atwood's references were completely lost on me.

However, the always amazing Atwood made the story very accessible for those of us who can't remember what we read last week, much less what we read in high school. The basic gist of the story: Penelope marries Odysseus and moves with him to Ithaca. She is the cousin of Helen of Troy, who is the bane of her existence. When Helen runs off to Troy with Paris, her husband asks Odysseus to help retrieve his wife. Odysseus agrees and thus begins his 20 year Odyssey. Back at home, young Penelope is left with a palace and a son. She is a smart woman, so she learns how to run a palace and farm and attracts the attention of young suitors who want to marry her for her treasures. Since there was little news of Odysseus, they pressured her relentlessly.

Penelope was able to stall her suitors by weaving a death shroud for her father-in-law and taking it apart at night. She recruited 12 maids to help her with this task. Yada yada yada, 10 more years go by and Odysseus finally returns. He kills the hundreds of suitors as well as the 12 maids. The death of the maids weighs heavily on Penelope - even in death.

Atwood tells the story as a modern narrative. Penelope is the narrator 2,000 years later as she resides in Hades. Atwood also includes "chorus" chapters, common to Greek plays, that the maids perform. Although the story is classic Greek and a little confusing with lack of background, Atwood's spin makes it amazing. I could appreciate her writing and now I want to know more about The Odyssey. One of the most amazing chapters was an "anthropological" view of the killings through the eyes of the maids. It was a classic anthropology lecture and I found it quite entertaining.

Atwood is pure genius!

15 September 2010

One More Week...

Maybe. Just maybe. One more week until we welcome this baby girl. We are ready. We cleaned the basement, bought a guest bed (finally), installed drapes, cleaned the house, packed the hospital bag. Twiddle, twiddle, twiddle my thumbs. I've tried to walk this baby out, clean this baby out, sex (yes, sex) this baby out. No luck. Waiting this baby out never really crossed my mind. That's pretty much what I'm left with though.

14 September 2010

Let's Hear It for the Boy

Or, in this case, man. I just posted some before photos of our house. We have made some major improvements to the house in the past 10 months or so. And we're rushing to get little jobs finished before Baby Girl arrives. However, when I say "we," I should be giving the credit to Nate. He has given up many weekends to devote to the house. Being pregnant has definitely had its advantages when it comes to getting out of DIY projects.

In addition to painting most of the house and finishing lots of random projects in the kitchen, Nate completely overhauled the yard this spring. He installed drainage next to the house, constructed a fence, and has tried to keep our garden alive (the same can't be said for the grass, but that'll come back in the spring, right?). He really has put a lot of sweat equity into this house and I can't thank him enough.

I'm going to make you wait for pictures. Mostly because Nate is still installing the drapery rods and I can't post an incomplete project!

The Dining/Living Room: Before

Posted by PicasaAlthough I've mostly been writing about our work to the kitchen, we've done some extensive work to the dining/living room area as well, including: re-texturing the plaster walls, painting the walls, painting the trim, and installing a new light fixture. Add to that a new dining table and new drapes and VOILA! we have a much improved living space! After pictures coming soon!

The Kitchen: Before

We took these photos when we were first looking at our house two years ago (almost to the day!). These are the before photos of the kitchen. After photos are coming shortly...
Posted by Picasa

08 September 2010

Two Weeks to Go

As I quickly approach the 38-week point (tomorrow), I am reminded that the last month of pregnancy is like a sick joke. And it gets sicker with each passing day. Wondering: Will she come today? Or do I have three weeks left to go?

Last night I woke up and swore that my water broke. Nope, I was just really sweaty because I forgot to open the window. Today my back and my abdomen were killing me. Contractions? Nope, just my body's reaction to carrying approximately 30 pounds in one localized area. To top it all off, Baby Girl was moving like crazy, which makes things a little uncomfortable at this point.

But, the fake outs are good reminders that we still need to prepare for this baby girl. I need to pack a hospital bag. Nate needs to install the car seat. I need to sterilize bottles and find my breast pump. Nate needs to install the stemware rack (priorities, yes). We both need to mentally prepare ourselves for a new addition. Benny seems cool with it all. Today I told him that I was going to grow my hair out to my belly. He said that the baby could eat it. Fair enough.

I'll try to keep the blog fairly updated in the next few weeks. It will mostly be complaints, but what more can you expect from me???

07 September 2010

Book Review: A Tree Grows in Brooklyn

There's a reason this book is a classic. It's a classic story about a young girl who grows up poor and is able to pull herself out of poverty (in a way) because she is bright. It's a lovely story about Frances (Francie) and her family.

As Anna Quindlen writes in the introduction, it's really a story about nothing. There is no plot line, no resolution. It is simply a story about Francie's life and her family's life. And while it could be boring, it's not. I read all 500 pages wanting to know more about her life and her brother's life, and her mother's life, and her father's life.

I have time for one more book before baby girl. Hmmmm.

02 September 2010

Action Shot!

We are nearly finished with the kitchen (yes, after nine whole months!). Here's an action shot of me - at nine months preggers - painting the walls. I was pretty committed to getting this task finished prior to labor. We just need to install a stemware rack and then we're officially DONE. Well, not officially. We still need to finish up a few details, but DONE enough! Pictures coming soon!
Posted by Picasa