Tuesday, September 30, 2014

The Birds

3:15pm: Baby Avery is napping soundly. The dust bunnies are now growing legs and starting to hop around the house. It's taken me nearly 3 days, but I'm finally going to get around to vacuuming.

3:30pm: Merrily vacuuming the main floor, congratulating myself on this small accomplishment of house-wifery.

Saturday, September 27, 2014

The Spidery Hellscape That Is My Lawn

There are many things that people will tell you about when you move to Seattle. The weather. The winter darkness. The frosty approach to social connection employed by many of its residents (aka "The Seattle Freeze.") Not one single person saw fit to inform me that Seattle is a spidery hellscape, especially between August and November.

To the strangers who saved me today, thank you.

Today, we took Baby Avery to her first UW Huskies game. By all accounts, it was an unmitigated disaster. While she largely slept through our 45 minutes of token tailgating, within 5 minutes of entering the stadium, meltdown ensued. Turns out that noise cancelling baby earmuffs aren't sufficiently effective for our baby. After 2 minutes of screaming, I was desperate to get her out of there.

Thursday, September 25, 2014

That Special Moment When Your Pants Fit Again

Within approximately one week of finding out I was pregnant, my jeans became insufferable. I tried to do the whole rubber band around the button thing, but it became obvious quickly that it wasn't going to work for me. I was bloated. I was constantly throwing up. I couldn't stand any pressure on my stomach. I resigned myself to living in leggings until I got big enough for maternity clothes.

Lo and behold, 3 months and 3 days after giving birth, I just successfully buttoned my pre-pregnancy jeans again. That's not to say I want to spend a whole day in them, or that there isn't a bit of a muffin top there, but they button without requiring me to lie down or perform other superhuman body contortion tricks. I consider this a win.

Now I just have to wait 9 more months for my boobs to deflate and I'll have my wardrobe back! More on that later...

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

The Mommy Shame Game (alternate title: Let's Stop Being A**holes to Each Other)

As many of you have noticed, I try to be funny with this blog. Often I'm bitching, but I try to infuse some humor into my bitching. But sometimes you just have to have a good old-fashioned knock-down, drag-out, throw-the-book at 'em rant. This is one of those.

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Live Blogging a Dishwasher Installation

For additional context, please see "Finding Religion Before a Scheduled Appliance Installation."


12:15pm: Installation crew arrives with new dishwasher. Being an idiot, I realize that I've not yet unloaded the old dishwasher. 

12:16pm: Begin unloading old dishwasher, get angry with husband for forgetting to run it. Realize that he did run it, it just failed to clean the dishes. Curse old dishwasher.

Finding Religion Before A Scheduled Appliance Installation

Before I got pregnant and had a baby, the only good reason I could come up with for having a blog was to complain about the immense inconvenience of home ownership. Don't get me wrong, it was good blog fodder, just infrequent. Also, don't get me wrong. Owning a home is a privilege and a blessing. But damn, it is such a pain in the ass.

Monday, September 22, 2014

Happy Anniversaries Come in Many Flavors. Preferably Chocolate and PJs

You know you married the right person when you find yourself happily celebrating your wedding anniversary by eating steak and mashed potatoes, followed by chocolate cake, off of your wedding china, while wearing pajamas.

Today Mark and I officially celebrated our second wedding anniversary. Our beautiful daughter, Avery, also turned 3 months old today. Do the math on that one. I promise, it'll be fun (#hinthint, our anniversary will forever be a reminder for her first-born of how much fun her parents had celebrating their first wedding anniversary!).

Another indication that we married the right person? We decided that the official celebration of our anniversary would be attending the Broncos/Seahawks football game, during which we talked a copious amount of shit, drank beer, and ate bad cheese steak. I wouldn't have it any other way. Neither would Mark.

Thursday, September 18, 2014

Apparently Old Men Blow Dry Their Balls in the Locker Room

Yay! My first click bait blog post title! I bet it convinced you to click. Don't lie to yourself. I promise, more on that later, but first to the planned topic of this post: acceptable parading of boobies in the women's locker room.

If you are a girl, chances are you had your first encounter with old lady boobs and the magnificent full silver bush in the women's locker room when you were a child -- you know, when you were old enough that staring was rude but still too young to help yourself. Don't lie.

When you were a teenager, you probably either avoided the locker room altogether, or performed towel/clothing acrobatics to avoid having anyone see your perky young boobs -- the ones you'd miss desperately by the time you hit your mid-20s. Don't lie.

By the time you were out of college and were faced with paying for a gym membership, getting naked in the locker room had probably just become par for the course. Everyone else stripped down and then concealed themselves in a tiny within a respectable period of time, so you just fell in line with the crowd. You still saw plenty of exposed lady bits, but everyone saw yours as well.

This is why you'd think that it wouldn't be a big effing deal to nurse your 2 month old baby in the women's locker room. I certainly didn't think it would be a big deal. Good lord, was I wrong. Apparently, women of a certain age have no problem parading around their old boobies and splaying their legs luxuriantly in the sauna, but if you so much as put a baby in the vicinity of a boob, someone is going to ask you to cover up. I have attempted to nurse my daughter in peace three times in the locker room at my gym so far. Each time, without fail, I have been offered a towel so that I can "cover up" -- sometimes by other members, sometimes by employees.

A digression on the subject of breastfeeding in public. While I try to avoid overt displays of nipple in the public arena, I am completely unconcerned about breastfeeding in public. If someone is offended by catching a glimpse of nipple in the .05 seconds it takes my piranha (ahem, baby) to latch on, that's their damn problem, not mine. Other mommies, if you feel uncomfortable about nursing in public, that's totally your choice. Everyone has different comfort levels. Just as I refuse to be shamed about nursing in public, I refuse to shame others about deciding not to do so.

Anyway, every time some scandalized looking woman in a towel offers to help me cover up, I've politely declined by saying that breasts are a fairly regular siting in a locker room, and I'm all good. Then I go back to paying attention to my personal vacuum (ahem, baby).

Today, in an attempt to comply with the new workout plan and thus avoid another night of terrible consequences, I found myself in the women's locker room, hitched to a pump like a common dairy cow. Naturally, it took approximately five seconds for an aging biddy to sidle up and offer me a towel -- this, despite the fact that my shirt was covering the pump apparatus. Honestly, it's an effing locker room. I will never understand.

So, now to the part you've been waiting for. As I was bitching to Mark about the incredibly hypocrisy happening in the women's locker room, he suddenly decides to inform me that apparently some old dudes in the locker room blow dry their balls.


(1) Their are blow dryers in the men's locker room?
(2) Do they use the cool setting?
(3) If not, does this result in swamp balls?
(4) Or worse ... chestnuts roasting on an open fire?

So many questions!

Mark has asked me to inform you that he does not participate in this activity.

Consequences of Ignoring the New Workout Plan

When it comes to maximizing exercise, my common sense is often minimal. As noted in my earlier post, intellectually I understood that pumping prior to doing an interval training workout made sense; however, I only had an hour and pumping was going to cut at least 10 minutes from my workout. So I went ahead and exercised while a little engorged. That was Tuesday at 5pm.

Wednesday at 3am I paid the price. I woke up to a crying baby and a very plugged milk duct. Always the same duct mind you. Right side, upper right quadrant. It's a weak spot in the truest sense of the term. Anyway, rather than my usual routine of grab baby, change diaper, attach baby to breast, and half-doze until she is sufficiently sated to be deposited back in her crib, I found myself engaged in strenuous negotiation with an intractable duct.

A digression . . . for those that are dismissing the pain of a plugged milk duct (ahem, men and childless people), I would like to state for the record that I gave birth naturally. No epidural, no drugs. If you need a visual, I pushed a watermelon out a hole the size of lemon with no analgesic assistance. This should lend me credibility when all I have to say about a plugged milk duct is: "F*** that sh**. Where's the Vicodin?"

Returning from my digression, it took 90 minutes, including a good 30 minutes of pumping, 20 minutes of standing in a scalding hot shower, and breaking the cardinal rule of having a baby -- waking the baby -- to unplug said duct. Needless to say, I will not be making this mistake again. I paid dearly for those extra 10 minutes.

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Oral Fixation

Over the past few days, Avery has discovered that she has these magical apparatuses called hands that she can use to stick things in her mouth. Her mind is blown. The dog is confused about why she isn't allow to put the toy in her mouth. 

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Water Torture / Parenting Entertainment

The Otteroo
After reading about Float Baby in Houston, Texas, I became vaguely obsessed with the notion of floating my child in a bathtub / swimming pool, etc. I looked for a Float Baby equivalent in Seattle to no avail. Turns out that when it comes to shoving your child's head in a donut and using it to float her in a body of water, Texas is more progressive. Who would have thought . . .

Then lo and behold, one of my favorite blogs, Lucie's List (precisely the correct amount of snark peppered in with parenting advice!), posts to Facebook about how you can create your very own Float Baby spa . . . in your own bathtub. This miracle comes courtesy of a company called Otteroo*. Ding ding ding... SOLD! For $35 I can provide myself with at least several hours of priceless entertainment as my 3 month old is magically transformed into (hopefully) smiling, giggling, disembodied head in my very own bathtub. I just ordered one. If Baby Avery doesn't vociferously object, I'll post some pictures.

Can I get a hallelujah for the Texans? Amen.

*Mark refers to this as the floating donut hole. I don't really think that's accurate considering that it's a head floating in a donut. It's more like a jelly donut. Or better yet, one of those Hershey's Kiss cookies. But whatever. These are minor parenting disagreements. You can judge for yourself below.

Hershey's Kiss Cookie
Donut Hole

The New Workout Plan

Working out used to involve putting on workout clothes and, well, working out. When you are a breastfeeding mother, working out must first involve either breastfeeding your child or hitching yourself to a pump. Should you fail to do either of these things, as I did today, lo shall you be punished, up to and including the dreaded clogged milk duct. Needless to say, the girls hurt like mofos. I've made a terrible mistake.

Monday, September 15, 2014

The Black Plate, Chapter 1

The name of this blog is not creative. It refers specifically to an inside joke between Mark and me, and another married couple with whom we are close. We'll call them Peter and Sarah. We are the only four people on the planet who find this joke hilarious, but that's the joy of these kinds of jokes. You can collectively laugh your asses off while other people look at you and wonder what you smoked/imbibed/ingested.

A few months after Mark and I first bought our house, our next door neighbors (a revolving door of female renters attending Seattle Pacific University), came by with a plate of cookies to welcome us to the neighborhood. A black plastic resin Ikea-caliber plate of the variety one has when in college.  It was very cute. They deeply underestimated just how sorely lacking we are in neighborly skills.

At first, I vowed to reciprocate and return the plate with a fresh batch of cookies. But then days turned into weeks and weeks turned into months. Too much time had passed for us to actually return the plate (and thus tacitly admitting that we are jerks) and suddenly we found ourselves with a random black plastic plate that was too decent to just throw away but not nice enough to actually hang on to. So like the mature adults we are, we decided to pawn it off on our friends.

Sure enough, next time we went to dinner at Sarah and Peter's, I baked a cake, slapped that sucker on the black plate, and then insisted that they keep the remainder of the cake. On the plate.

A few weeks later at the next dinner, the plate came back to us. We tried to politely decline. We explained that we didn't want it. We explained that we couldn't give it back to the original owners. We tried to refuse. It didn't work. And thus a tradition was born.

For the past three years, the plate has been traded back and forth. The means of transference have become increasingly sneaky, from hiding it in a gift bag to slipping it into a cupboard. The last transfer occurred at a restaurant during brunch, when the plate was served to us with a scone on top.

We have only two words for Sarah and Peter: GAME ON.

Pillow Talk

Me: "Until I carried and birthed a child, I never understood women who wanted all of those pillows. Now I totally get it" (this as I lounge back on two pillows and clutch a third).

Mark: "What the hell were all of these pillows we had before you got pregnant?"

Me: "Decorative."

Mark: "I will never understand."