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Secrets Secrets are no fun! Secrets Secrets Hurt Someone! April 30, 2008

Filed under: Naval Gazing — booksunread @ 6:01 pm

Hmm, I’m not sure I have anything witty/funny/amusing/non-baby related to say today, but I don’t want to leave my many, many loyal readers dangling with just one post this week. So today, I will make a confession. This blog is super-duper top secret. Only two people in my real life know about it, and neither of them is my husband.

Yes, I am one of those assholes who keeps secrets from her husband. I always thought that people who lied to their husbands, either directly or through omission, had crappy relationships and were kind of stupid. I still think women who shop more than they know their husbands would like then play shell games with the family finances or hide their purchases are annoying stereotypes. Plus living in fear of getting caught doing that shit is no way to live.

Of course, I can say that knowing that 1. I do not have a crazy expensive shopping habit and 2. Miguel has never shown much interest in my shopping sprees; in fact, he gets annoyed when I come home and regale him with my bargain shopping skillz. I think he thinks I’m trying to justify my purchases to him, which he doesn’t see as necessary…really I am just showing off and want some validation that I am indeed a super shopper.

There are some other lies and half truths in your relationships-what you’re doing when you’re apart, who you’re with, where you are going-that are all no-no’s as far as I’m concerned. Even if you know what you’re doing is completely innocent but your husband is just overprotective/jealous/possessive/what have you, that is a problem right there in your relationship that needs to be addressed. The golden rule applies here; if you wouldn’t like to find out your husband failed to mention he had lunch with an old girlfriend, then you shouldn’t be pulling it either. Even if you know that something is going to cause friction, you should either be able to come to an agreement about it, or respect the other’s feelings and compromise.

All that said, after 5 years of marriage, I have come to value the peace keeping that a “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy can sometimes bring. Take the blog for instance. Miguel does not get personal journaling/blogs. He doesn’t read them, does not see the value in them to the reader or the blogger. What can I say? He is a man’s man, he doesn’t admit to having feelings when he can help it, he certainly doesn’t understand anyone else’s need to get their feelings out, share them, get feedback on them, etc.

At the same time, he’s also old-fashioned and highly image conscious professionally, and places a high amount of value on projecting the right persona for career-advancement. Airing one’s dirty laundry on the internets where anyone might see it is completely counter to this mission.

This old-fashioned attitude also extends to conducting personal business at work; at the office, one should never admit to having a personal life, let alone try to manage it during business hours. He is lucky that he has a personal assistant (me) who happily manages his shit for him from her work, because sometimes, you just have to make calls, send e-mails, and run errands during business hours. He is always making fun of me for doing things like checking the bank balance from work, etc., even though my company’s extremely liberal media use policy openly acknowledges that personal business may need to be conducted on work hours using the company’s phone, internet and e-mail. Basically all they ask is that it not be egregious to the point of interfering with work and obviously that it not be pornographic or otherwise inappropriate. Miguel would not visit a non-work related website from the office if you put a gun to his head.

All this to come to shameful admission number two in this post…I write most of my posts from work, another aspect of this whole blog business of which Miguel would whole-heartedly disapprove. If I didn’t, well, then I just wouldn’t have a blog. After spending nine hours a day at the computer (I rarely leave for lunch), it is at the bottom of my list to go sit in front of the computer some more after work hours. I have errands to run, a gym to get to (sporadically), dinner to be made, a dog to be walked, books to read, and a DVR crammed full of garbage TV to watch, etc.

And finally, the last reason to keep this blog a secret from Miguel, and in fact most of the people in my real life, is that I want to be able to write candidly without censoring. If I want to vent, I want to be able to do it without worrying that the object of the venting will read it and get his/her feelings hurt. If I want to share things that Miguel would deem too personal for public consumption, like our fertility struggles, then I want that freedom.

I’m not a complete idiot; I do make an effort to avoid any references that would make me identifiable or allow people to trace this blog back to the real life me. I don’t give my real name, or Miguel’s, I don’t even use my dog’s name! You will never see me make more than vague mention of where I work or live, or post any pictures of people. I do limit any references to my work or professional life in case this should happen to come to the attention of the powers that be; they will never have the option of saying I disparaged the company in any way through my blogging (unless bitching about the bathrooms counts!).

I don’t know, I’m not completely web-tech savvy, so I guess it’s possible that someone could out me if they really tried. I built this under my real e-mail address, though I don’t post it anywhere on the site, so maybe in secret code somewhere the two are linked. I’ve tried googling my e-mail address and don’t get any cross over, so I’m assuming I’m safe from basic-cross contamination.

So anyway, now that I’ve been doing this for close to a year (holy crap!) I’m kind of stuck. If I tell Miguel about it now, he will want to see it, and be pissed that I somehow never mentioned it in 10 months. If I do continue to keep it a secret, I will always have it in the back of my mind that he could find out some other way, and be even more pissed. See, this is why secrets in relationship are bad, m’kay.


Lions, and Giraffes, and Monkeys! Oh My! April 28, 2008

Filed under: Pregnancy — booksunread @ 1:57 pm

Very slow weekend. The mural painter practically moved into the house so we were kind of stuck there; only one of us could skip out at a time and somehow I ended up pulling couch duty for most of it.

The mural painter is soooo sloooow. But it is coming along well and will look great when it’s done (sometime in 2009, I’m guessing). The way he works is he drew out all the animals on paper to scale and taped them up where they will go on the wall for my approval before putting carbon-paper type-stuff below it and tracing the outlines onto the wall. He got there a little late on Saturday and did not have all his patterns drawn out yet; at 1:30 or so, he still had one more animal to draw. I only requested one change to the patterns, which he made Saturday night, so it’s not like I was slowing him down (the monkey was disproportionately large, it would have looked like he was about to swoop into the crib and make off with the baby…).

So very little actual painting got done on Saturday. And then the “between 9 and 10” start time Sunday ended up being more like 10:15 again. By the time they knocked off at 5:30ish, only one animal was completely all the way finished. He brought along his 12 year old son, who is also an artist, so he could start learning the process and also help with the fill in painting. I’m guessing stopping to explain things might have slowed him down some as well (he reduced the price, bringing it within my budget, since I agreed to that ahead of time). The tree and one of the birds is pretty unfinished still, and then the other animals need detail work to be done. He is coming back Wednesday, and hopefully will finish it all then (luckily, we are paying him by the job, not the hour).

Other than that, I was grateful that the weather has cooled off a tiny little bit. It is way too soon to be turning on the AC, but my swollen self can not take the high 70’s we got last week. Our bedroom gets the late afternoon sunlight full-on into the only two windows, baking the room just in time for bed, without any other windows to provide the relief of a cross breeze. Last week, it was 81 degrees in there at 10:30 at night. I slept on the basement couch. I’m hoping it stays in the high 60s for at least a few more weeks.

Oh, and also all those hand me down capris I was going to be able to be sporting with the weather warm up? Um, a wee tight in the rear end. Not pretty. Have got to stop gaining weight in the ass-area. And yet, Saturday I felt compelled to make cookies. When Miguel asked me what the occasion was, I informed him that we were out of ice cream. That is all the excuse I need, apparently. I was good at the grocery store on Sunday though, I did not buy any ice cream and bought lots of fresh fruits and veggies instead (don’t clap yet, the 2 dozen choc chip cookies at home were a good motivator :).


7 Month Belly Pix April 26, 2008

Filed under: Pregnancy — booksunread @ 6:46 pm

Compared to 6 months…it’s kind of hard to tell since the two shots weren’t taken at the same distance, but I’m definitely sticking out more!


Is it Friday Already? April 25, 2008

Filed under: Uncategorized — booksunread @ 2:46 pm

This week has flown by!

We finished the nursery last weekend, with a minimum of fuss/threats of divorce. There was only one instance where I nearly dropped everything and left the room for yelling and only one meltdown where each other’s mothers were disparaged (don’t ask!).

We do not do home improvement projects together well. I was raised by the original anal-retentive carpenter and had it constantly drilled into my head that one should measure twice, cut once, always use a level and in short, do it right. Miguel comes from more of the “good enough” and “just get it done” school of carpentry. Why go to all the trouble of using dry wall anchors and screws for that curtain rod if it doesn’t immediately fall down when you pound in two finish nails? Why mess with two coats of paint when one looks good enough (if you don’t look too closely…)?

Compounding this opposite dynamic is the fact that while I know how things should be done, I rarely have the patience or skill for it. So I don’t actually want to do it right, I just want him to. Not a recipe for happy campers. Still, I only had to do a minimum of riding him on the stuff I really cared about (two coats of paint, using a level on the trim), and managed to unclench and let the rest go (using white headed finish nails in the brown trim, then touching them up with brown paint).

And then the furniture drama started. After perusing the offerings at Babies R Us and in the JC Penney catalog, I settled on a set from JCP. I wanted a crib that was convertible to a headboard and footboard, a dresser style changing table with a hutch/shelves which would later serve as a dresser and bookcase, and a chest of drawers. I wanted something of good quality that would grow with him, but I also didn’t want to spend a fortune on a custom set from one of those chi-chi baby boutiques. Babies R Us didn’t have the styles, pieces and finishes I wanted all in one set, and I thought the JCP set would be a good compromise on price vs. quality.

Although I had been told that furniture can take 5 to 6 weeks for delivery, I assumed that was a problem for regular furniture stores and that JCP would stock and ship stuff quickly. Not wanting the stuff in the way while we were painting in there (recipe for disaster!), I waited until Saturday to order everything. And was told that both the crib and the changer were backordered; the changer until the end of June! I went ahead with the order anyway, hoping that they would beat the backorder dates.

On Monday, I called back to see how delivery of the rest of the furniture would be handled, and was told it was already on its way via UPS…Really? UPS delivers whole pieces of put together furniture? Like a moron, I just assumed that because the furniture was being home delivered and not a catalog pickup that it was like any other real solid furniture you buy from a furniture store. BZZZZT! WRONG! Further investigation revealed that not only was it of the comes in a flat box with directions in Chinese and only half the screws you need variety, it was also wood VENEER.

This is a problem on two fronts. 1: see above re: the carpentry problems at Casa Books-this type of furniture assembly is a challenge for those gifted with patience and building aptitude, at our house, it would be sure to result in janky construction, off-square pieces, and drawers that would only pull out if tapped three times in the right place while pushing the entire dresser to the left. 2: Veneers over particle board. As in flimsy, easily scratched and sure to break within the first 3 years. Not exactly the lifetime furniture pieces I envisioned. For that construction and life expectancy, I might as well save several hundred dollars and get the shit at Target.

Cue frantic calling, running around and internet searching for alternatives. Not only did I find that none of the major chains around here even carry nursery stuff, the places that do, with the exception of Babies R Us, have not 5 but 12 week delivery times! Panic! My wee baby will be sleeping in a cardboard box! (Also not yet sorted out, his name, daycare, pediatrician, stroller, etc! I am a bad mom already!)

So I made a return trip to BBRUs, dashing across town in rush hour traffic and confirmed, that yup, they do not have anything I like. Either they have the changing dresser and hutch, but no chest in the set, just a big honking armoire (why would you want two giant furniture pieces in one room?) or they had it, but in a light wood or white which I don’t like and wouldn’t fit the painting we’d already done in there.

I also looked at a Woodcraft furniture place, where you can pick from all sorts of pieces and have them finished the color you want. While it was more expensive than the JCP stuff, it was solid wood, not nearly as expensive as specialty kid store brands and I could get EXACTLY the pieces I wanted in the color I wanted, no compromising. However, they take 10 weeks, which was longer than I wanted.

Especially once I got home and counted off on the calendar and realized “Holy Crap! 10 weeks is JULY!” In desperation I visited the Target website but was completely discouraged by the terrible reviews on the pieces I would want. By this point, I was very stressed out and had no idea what we were going to do. It was looking like praying that wee baby would not arrive early would be our best option.

I called back the Woodcraft place to see if there was any way we could speed delivery times, and miracles, she’d talked to their ordering guy and because of the timing-they were just about to place an order the next day-they could get me everything by the beginning of June. Once they actually placed the order and got their delivery time from the manufacturer, they called me back to confirm and it will actually be like the third week in May. If they don’t have a lot of orders in to be finished at that time, it may even be earlier. Yippee!! Crisis averted.

The mural painter comes tomorrow. It is all coming together!


Playing With the Baby April 18, 2008

Filed under: Pregnancy — booksunread @ 6:47 pm

Okay, complete change of subject; no more gross potty talk. Wee Baby was being unusually quiet this morning so I started jiggling and tapping on my belly to see if I could wake him up. Problem is, I’m not sure how much he can feel in there, how hard should I be tapping. What if it’s like the equivalent of a 7.0 earthquake in there for him? I’d be pretty pissed if I was sleeping and Miguel came along and started tapping incessantly on my head to get me to wake up.

I’m going to have to ask the NMW at my visit next week how hard I can press and what he can feel in there. I’d also like to know what’s what in there, since I feel pokes and prods all over the place in my belly, and not really in one consistent place. It’s going to be so freaky when I can actually feel on my belly and be like, that’s a butt, that’s a foot, that’s a hand.

(He did wake up and squirm around later…I was starting to get worried. We just got finished playing a game of patty cake-he’d kick or poke me and then I’d press down there with the palm of my hand, then he’d poke me again. I could do this all day.)

I can’t believe I’m now officially into my third trimester. Three more month exactly to my due date. Have I mentioned yet that I can’t wait to meet him?


More Rant

Filed under: Daily Grind — booksunread @ 6:43 pm

On the work bathroom! Lucky you! Avert your eyes if easily grossed out. After posting a note in there asking for better hygiene and courtesy of others, things did perk up for awhile, but are now quickly spiraling out of control again.

I do not know what they are feeding these people, but somebody needs some serious dietary help. Either someone has rampant IBS or is using the Hollywood 48 Hour Miracle Diet. Someone has a case of bowl splashing diarrhea EVERY. SINGLE. DAY. in that bathroom. That is NOT normal.

I’m not unsympathetic, I’m prone to sensitive stomach myself. But it’s not an ongoing daily occurrence. Get some fucking help; adjust your diet, take some meds, something!

Now to add to the bespeckled bowls and the occasional actual shit streaked toilet seat, we now have a new problem. Earlier in the week, as I perched on my 10-layer nest of toilet paper (the pregnant lady can NOT squat) I noted a distinctive Cheeto crumb on the floor. In the bathroom stall. At the time, I told myself it had mostly likely just hitchhiked in there and was shaken off someone’s shirt or pants. Until two days later, when I spied a whole smattering of cracker crumbs.

What the fuck? Is someone hanging out in there having a snack? In the shitted up, rarely well cleaned bathroom? Really? Now I’m imagining that the whole thing can be chalked up to some closet binger, sitting on the toilet alternating bags of Cheetos and exlax and blowing the whole place out.



Second Week Not Any Better (At least she showed up, I guess) April 17, 2008

Filed under: Uncategorized — booksunread @ 1:21 am

So the MIA “yoga” (I’ll get to those quote marks in a minute) instructor deigned to put in an appearance tonight.  She started off on a lovely note-instead of a heartfelt apology for any confusion last week she had this to say “Good thing there were only four people here.”  BZZZT! WRONG ANSWER. It certainly wasn’t a good thing for SIX people who showed up for class and wasted an additional 20 minutes sitting around waiting for you to show up.

And then she was all, “okay, start squatting.”  No introduction of herself, no introduction of the class or “yoga” or anything for the four people who were new to the class.  Every actual yoga class I’ve ever been to starts out with relaxation and breathing, and the instructor usually has set patter about yoga, breathing, cautions about pushing yourself and modifying poses if needed, etc.  We got none of that, which I would think would be especially important to new people who are also pregnant who maybe haven’t taken a yoga class before.

And then the “yoga.”  From squats, we proceeded to leg lifts; for at least the first 30 minutes, there was not a single exercise I recognized as a yoga pose.  I spent the first 10 minutes steaming and plotting how I was going to ask for my money back.  Somewhere towards the end there, she tossed in a downward dog and a loosely explained, sloppily executed warrior.  Oh, and there was partner work and touching of strangers-my favorite. 

At one point, one of the other new people asked “so twisting like this is okay in pregnancy?” and she just sort of shrugged and was like “yeah, whatever as long as you don’t do it to extremes.”  I have serious doubts as to whether or not she was even certified in any way to teach yoga, let alone had any specialized training for prenatal. 

So instead of stretched and relaxed I’m all pissed off and ranty.  MEH.