Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Pregnancy Updates

25.5 weeks and counting...

I went to the dentist last week and I am happy to say that everything looks great. Pregnancy can cause problems in the mouth, such as bleeding gums, more plaque buildup, etc. But my oral hygiene has been great. Phew!

Most people that see me are surprised that I am already 25 weeks into the pregnancy. Everyone says I look great. I'm not sure whether or not I should believe them. What else would they say..."wow, you look more like you are in your 30th week"?? I have actually gained more weight than I should have. Well, that's according to mine and my doctor's plan. I am close to 20 lbs. with 3 months to go and my doctor suggested I gain 20 - 25 lbs. total. Although most people say 25 - 35 lbs. is average. The good thing is that I can still do my pilates workouts (I'm pretty good at the plank) and I can still run, although my stamina is way down.

Don't you just love the feeling you have when you stretch your body the first thing after you wake up. You point your toes, stretch your arms, and then the bloody pain of a cramp in your calf hits. If you are pregnant, that happens to you every morning until you learn to stretch with your heels flexed and toes pointed up. I'm not sure people know why your calves turn into a muscle spasm waiting to happen. Some people say it's the imbalance of hormones and nutrients in the body while others say it's dehydration. I've been eating more bananas and that seems to help. But I definitely think dehydration is a factor because during the night I pee a lot and don't drink much water. I tend to loose 3-4 lbs. overnight, and I think it's mostly water weight.

We are finally putting together a list of stuff to buy. And we are discovering that there is A LOT of baby stuff out there. It's almost overwhelming. It's kind of like the car industry, you have lots of different types of cars you can buy (sedan, suv, truck, etc.). And within each type you have loads of brands to choose from (Ford, Toyota, Honda, etc.). Well, the same goes for any baby product. If you are looking for a stroller, there are lots of options including traditional, travel system with car seat and other functions, double strollers, and a couple other more specific-function strollers. For a traditional stroller, Consumer Reports has rated 32 different strollers. Yikes! And the prices vary from $35 to $900. Double yikes. We are trying to keep things simple, so I've armed myself with Consumer Reports, a baby stuff buying guide, and the internets.

I am back to being tired a lot. But it's not the same feeling as it was in the first trimester. Now, by around 9 pm, I am ready for bed. And I am tired as if I had a long day full of activities. I can push myself if I really have to (like staying up well past midnight last Saturday night for multiple Halloween parties). And I am still sleeping terribly. I am not yet uncomfortable, as I probably will be in the last few weeks. It's different. I usually sleep about 6 hours, with a bathroom break, but then after 6 hours I wake up and can't turn my brain off for 1 or 2 hours. I'm not stressed out about stuff, I just can't stop thinking...about everything...work, soccer, movies I've seen, when to do laundry. Some people say it's practice for when the baby comes but I'm sure that whether or not I get plenty of sleep these last few months, I am still going to be tired when the baby is around. So I prefer the sleep. I'll eventually get back to sleep and will wake up between 7 and 8 am, without an alarm.

Soccer Week and Weekend

My girls’ team played on Sunday to a decisive 3-0 victory. It felt great to win, especially since we beat the team that had tied us in the last minutes of our previous game against them, which dropped us to 2nd place. We have two games left in the season. I am looking forward to the end of the season so I will have more time to do other stuff (scrapbooking, baby planning, etc.).

I have been a little annoyed lately with the lack of players at practice. We tend to only have 6-8 players at practice, out of 17. And I often get emails or texts an hour before the game letting me know that a player isn’t going to make it. I guess this is only recreational soccer but it’s still kind of rude. Regardless, I still have been having a great time coaching and I will miss the girls when the season is over.

We had an English soccer trainer, Rhys, stay with us the past week. He was fun to have around. I talked lots of soccer with him and the husband played lots of xBox with Rhys. Even the cats were happy to have another set of hands to pet them. Except Monkey. She was very unhappy to have to share the guest bed with an actual guest.

Monday, October 20, 2008

Tough Loss

The girls team I coach finally lost. We lost 2-1 in rematch against the other city team. The last time we played the team we beat them 3-2. The other team just wanted the game more than we did and it showed. Even though this game is our only loss, we have a tie while the other team has no ties, so the result bumps them up to first. We tied against the second-to-last place team in the final minutes of the game. We had no subs and the girls were just tired. It sucks that our season will be determined by a few minutes of one game. Oh well, that’s soccer. Now we just look forward to our last 3 games, win those games, and hope the other team looses or at least ties a game.

Regardless of the loss, I am still having more fun coaching than I imagined I would. Coaching at this level is a lot more satisfying than coaching at the younger levels because the players just get it. We tell them to do something or teach them new strategy and they adapt pretty well.

I can’t wait to be a soccer mom. And no, I don’t mean the suburban driving, warm-up suit wearing, Starbuck’s drinking, Republican voting soccer mom, but a real soccer mom. One that actually coaches soccer and watches the games.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Latest Cravings

I have The baby has been craving Mexican food lately. Fortunately I can only stand it for 1 meal.

The husband calls the baby el bebe. It's cute.

The baby has been quite busy in my belly and I can even feel the motions when I put my hand on my abdomen. But every time the husband tries to feel, the baby stops moving. I wonder if the baby can tell that someone different has put their hand on my belly.

We have two books we've started reading to the baby: Make Way for Ducklings and La Oruga Muy Hambrienta (The Hungry Caterpillar).

Boston Highlights

Our week in Boston was a lot of fun. It was definitely the break we needed. We didn’t have a lot of downtime because we were busy hanging out with friends and family. Although it was hard to be back at work on Monday morning, I did feel refreshed.

My high school friends Kelly and Linette, and Kelly’s friend Joni, met up with us in Boston. It was fun to have Bostonian visitors around because we ended up doing a lot of the touristy stuff ourselves.

I think the highlight of our trip was Tuesday. We started off the day with a tour of the Christian Science Church. For those of you who have never been to Boston, the Christian Science Church grounds take up a huge city block. The tour was mostly an excuse for me to use the toilet. Our tour guide was an extremely friendly old lady who started off by saying that the Christian Science religion is not Scientology. They never explained that. There was actually a point in time when we were supposedly finished with our tour and were moving towards the exit down a narrow stairwell behind the altar when I wondered if perhaps a couple of us should have stayed back just in case. Fortunately we all made it out of there alive and non-converts.

The next tour was at the Berklee School of Music. The husband and I skipped out of this tour since our only excuse at music is that I listen to it and he sings in the shower. I promised I would bring my kid back in 18 years but I lied because my baby is going to be a superathlete.

In the evening, we went to a Boston Symphony Orchestra performance of Previn, Stravinsky, and Beethoven. I was wary of the Previn piece since it’s a modern piece, but it was actually pretty good. The best description I can think of is that it was organic and it reminded me of nature. I guess that makes sense since it was titled Owls. The baby liked Stravinsky’s Violin Concerto the best, especially the 4th movement. And the Beethoven’s Symphony No. 4 was ok. I prefer Beethoven’s more common pieces.

After the symphony we moved on to Wally’s Cafe, a hole-in-the-wall jazz club a few blocks away. It was loud but the music was really great. We only stayed about 1 hour, since that’s the exposure limit to loud music that the baby should have.

So we moved on to Jacque’s Cabaret Drag Karaoke. The husband knew of the place – how, I don’t know. But it was loads of fun. We arrived shortly before the place closed down, so we didn’t have a chance to perform a piece. Next time!

After drag karaoke, we went to a 24 hour bowling place for candlepin bowling. For those of you who have never played candlepin bowling (it’s a New England thing), it is a lot of fun. It’s the same lane as regular bowling, but the pins (same number, I think) are narrow and cylindrical (2”-3” in diameter), and you get three tries, but the pins that have fallen aren’t cleared between tries. And the ball is much smaller so you can palm it and even throw it if you want to.

Other highlights included a yummy Italian dinner in the North End, a trip to Salem, catching up with the husband’s old friends and getting to know my friends a lot better, and of course hanging out with family and the grandparents-to-be.

Friday, October 10, 2008

Dear Congress,

The Markets aren't doing well. So I think you should take the $700 billion and save yourselves. It's the least that we, the American people, can do to thank you for all that you've done. It's hard work to run a country and to make decisions about what to do with our money. So please, save yourselves.


Thursday, October 9, 2008

In Boston

And loving it! We are here for 8 days and having a great time. A couple of my high school friends are also in town so we've been doing a lot of touristy stuff with them.

Over the weekend we went to a wedding on Long Island in NY. It was the fanciest wedding I have ever attended. The ceremony was low key at a local church and the couple's dog, a well-behaved black lab, was the ring bearer. The reception was at a large estate/mansion. What characterized this wedding as fancy for me was that it took place in many rooms of the mansion. First there was the drinks/reception area. Then they opened up two large rooms with heavy (and yummy) appetizers. We spent most of our time in the Library appetizer room, among the Syphilis Illustrated and Women's Diseases books. As we debated whether or not we would get a formal dinner, we were shuffled into the banquet room for dinner.

After dinner, we moved to another two rooms for dancing, cake, and more drinks. The dancing started off with the largest car bomb toast ever (I think). The wedding was loads of fun. The best part was getting together with family we don't get to see all the time.

On Sunday we met up with some old friends who had moved to NY. Sumana and Leonard who we met on the internets and were from the Bay Area and our grad school friend Pablo and his wife AnaMaria. It was nice to hang out with our old friends and just catch up on our lives, relive old memories, and have great conversations.

More about the Boston experience in a future post...

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Thursday Tidbits

So you can see Russia from Alaska. That was Sarah Palin’s claim for why she has foreign policy experience to Katie Couric. And when Couric asked again, she replied “because our neighboring countries are foreign countries.”

The husband has a couple of clips on his blog of the Couric-Palin interview which are priceless. He also included an question-answer session with Ms. South Carolina for comparison. They are just a precursor to the debate tonight. Enjoy them here.

During an NPR interview, McCain was asked what foreign policy qualifications Sarah Palin has. McCain’s response:

“she has the knowledge and background on a broad variety of issues, including probably the major challenge of America, and that's energy independence...She has the world view that I have. She is very highly qualified and very knowledgeable.”

If you have an IT department at work, have you noticed what theme was used in naming your computers at work? We used to have a feline theme, but we started moving towards a professional cyclists name theme. The new trend is because our IT guys are big cyclists. Some other offices from my company have a Lord of the Rings theme.

We are going to Boston and New York for about a week so I may or may not be posting. We’ll be in NY this weekend for a wedding and we hope to see some of you NY people. We’ll spend the rest of the week in Boston. Two of my high school friends also planned their vacation to Boston around the same time as we did, so I’ll get to hang out with them during the week.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Shopping Pains

I went shopping yesterday after lunch. Who hangs out at the mall midweek during the day? Pregnant ladies and moms with their babies and young children. I was at the mall looking for a semi-formal dress to wear to a wedding in NY this weekend. I was very unsuccessful. Actually, I did fine two really great dresses that were extremely flattering to the pregnant belly, but they were $200 each. I’m not sure I would spend that much on a dress if I wasn’t pregnant and would be able to wear it multiple times.

So I went back to work extremely frustrated. But by the evening my new shopping mission was to find a nice pair of slacks and fancy top. I succeeded. Tonight I go shoe shopping.

While I was out shopping, I also found a great pair of jeans at The Gap. Some The Gaps have maternity (and baby and baby furniture) sections. I highly recommend The Gap for maternity clothes shopping – at least for pants. They are affordable and fit great (but the length may need to be altered a bit). For nice work tops I would go to Motherhood Maternity or Ross. They are cheap and will do the trick for the few months that you need them. If budget is not an issue or you just want to try on some really nice clothes for fun, go to A Pea in the Pod. That’s where I found the $200 dress (and it was on sale). For lounge type of clothes, I would shop at Target or Motherhood Maternity.