Friday, December 17, 2010

Introducing: Hannabert

I have recently decided to name the baby in the belly - Hannabert.  The nursery work has come to a standstill.  I am teaching three classes this term, have nonstress tests 2x a week, and office hours 2x week in addition to my full-time job.  Unfortunately, something has to give and that has been everything else (including eating most mornings).

We have a mere 60 days (more like 57 as I am being induced a week before my due date) left and I am thinking that Hannabert's room needs to be addressed.  I did manage to make curtains though - need to hem and finish the top - and I am debating whether or not to change out the long, whore house red curtains over the sliding door.  Should we wait until Hannabert arrives before finishing the nursery? 

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Things they don't tell you about being pregnant

First, my doctor gave Rob strict instructions to NOT let me read any pregnancy books (What to Expect When You're Expecting: 4th Edition or Mayo Clinic Guide to a Healthy Pregnancy) as she (and he) were fairly certain I would tern into an immediate hypochondriac (The Hypochondriac's Handbook: Syndromes, Diseases, and Ailments that Probably Should Have Killed You By Now). It is probably is a very wise decision on both accounts despite the fact that now I am completely unaware of what symptoms I should be experiencing so I now am forced to watch  16 & Pregnant to gain all my baby/pregnancy knowledge.  Rob recently decided that the show was banned from our house.  Good thing he doesn't know how to turn on parental controls (BOB - Screen Time Manager - Manage Your TV Time).

Now that we are about 30 weeks along, I have noticed some disturbing pregnancy items:  sharing space in the tummy is very uncomfortable when you need to use the restroom (Reliance Products Hassock Portable Lightweight Self-Contained Toilet).  This is especially true when the baby has it in his/her mind to roll and twist about.  I guess sharing bathroom space now will prepare me for not being able to go to the bathroom alone for the next 8 years...

Another thing I wasn't aware of was truly how many times the doctor would need to see me due to my gestational diabetes (Gestational Diabetes: What to Expect).  I am going two times every week for nonstress test heart monitoring and having ultrasounds done weekly to measure the baby in the belly size.  Luckily, my real work (Lexis-Nexis) doesn't start until the afternoon and I can schedule my appointments around my teaching/directing job.  Yeah, working two jobs does NOT make my doctor very happy at all.  I am trying to convince her that I gives me better time management (Secrets Of Time Management Your Mom Never Told You !) and it will create a more well-rounded pregnancy...So far so good.

Unfortunately, the one aspect of pregnancy that I was looking forward to was cravings (The Craving Cure: Break the Hold Carbs and Sweets Have on Your Life) which I haven't had although Rob will tell you all I want is NC Style BBQ Pork (Wells Hog Heaven Barbecue Sauce) with vinegar style sauce and he is probably right.  I guess I don't think of a desire to consume a pound a week of barbecue pork as a craving.  I think of ice cream and pickles as a craving.

Otherwise, we are stumbling through the beginning stages of parenthood without too many deviations from the road map.  We are creating quite a stir because we have decided to wait to until the baby is here to find out the sex (Intelligender Gender Prediction Test Kit) of Hannahbert (the name bestowed on the baby by a coworker).  While it might cause clothing shopping issues, we are comfortable in our decision to wait.

Until our next new baby discovery...

Sunday, October 10, 2010

And Baby makes Threee

Well, it has been a really long time since I posted so I think that a quick catch-up is in order.  Surprise, we are expecting a baby. 

To be honest, this was a bit of a surprise blessing but it is still a blessing.  We had a lot of factors working against us but nature certainly prevailed. Our anticipated due date is Feb. 16, 2010.

As I am a reader, I have looked at a lot of different books about pregnancy and I must say that most of them are pretty scary.    I have also noticed that there are a lot of online message boards where you can post comments and questions.  Those are really scary.  I tend to err on the side of hypochondria so I had to stop reading those.  Made me way too anxious. 

One book that I do like it the  Mayo Clinic Guide to a Healthy Pregnancy which has a really direct, medical way of speaking.  I keep this one at home for reference. Another good one it YOU: Having a Baby: The Owner's Manual to a Happy and Healthy Pregnancy which is a little more light, humorous reading.  I keep that one a work for reading during a break.

Rob is extremely excited that we are having a baby and can't wait to be a dad.  We are opting to not know the sex of the baby which is great because what a better surprise than on delivery day finding out but does make finding clothes a little more difficult and there is not much that is gender neutral.

We are opting for green and chocolate as nursery colors.  For themes I want to go with an Ansel Adams type of black and white pictures on the walls.  I read somewhere that babies need to be exposed to black/white colors for eye development so I want to encourage that. I also want to take some of the pictures we have taken in Great Smoky Mountains because I want our baby to enjoy nature and hiking.

Until next time, I will keep on marinating this baby!

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Weekend Breakfast

As you may be aware, I work a lot of hours and I rarely find time to do the dishes and do the cooking. As I hate doing laundry more than I hate cooking and dishes, our current arrangement has me doing the bulk of the cooking and dishes with Horn doing the laundry and ironing.

For the most part it works although I think that he has more clothes than me so his need to do laundry is less pressing than my desire for him to do laundry.

Regardless of the dish or laundry situation, on weekends I really like to cook one substantial meal. I sometimes see it as a quasi-bribe for Horn to do things like go to IKEA with me. It usually works.

As you are probably unaware, I love reading cookbooks. I like checking them out from the library and pouring over recipes that I want to make as well as ones that I know would never fly with my more picky eating husband (to his credit, since being diagnoses as a diabetic, his eating habits have been enlightened).

My most recent library finds include the 2009 Southern Living Cookbook (from which I made what I am coining "Fat Elvis Bread Pudding") and Gourmet (sadly no longer published as a magazine).

While Gourmet has very interesting recipes, I find a lot of their recipes unapproachable or just plain weird (where can you even buy aspic?). That said, I fell in love with a few of the recipes - especially breakfast.

While I loved "Cowboy Breakfast," it was a little too big for Horn and I but the Baked Eggs with Cheese was perfect for the two of us (down graded from six eggs to four eggs).

The Baked Eggs were absolutely perfect. I used a gruyere & swiss blend (purchases from Trader Joe's) and baked my eggs in a 8x8 pan. While the eggs still came out well, being served "family style" wasn't the easiest way to eat this dish. I would definitely steer any other cook towards using the ramekins.

For cooking time, granted I keep cast iron cookware in my stove so the temperatures might be off, mine took about 16 minutes compared to the 14 minutes suggested in the recipe. The egg white did puff up and turn nice and crispy. The yolks kind of sink into the whites and the cheese and creme fraiche create a nice gooey cover. Horn suggested that folding in ham or bacon (or his most favorite - pot roast hash from TJ) would make it even better. It is definitely worth considering.

This would be a great brunch dish - maybe even for Easter.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Revisiting our wedding mass

Rob and I were married during the Easter Season of the Catholic Church - the time period immediately following Easter Sunday and Holy Week. It is a time of rejoicing in the church - we have been washed of our sins by the sacrifice of Jesus's death on the Cross.

For us, it meant we had great opportunities to select our readings. One of the important things for us was to have reading the were "us" and spoke of our commitment to each other.

Being Catholic, our choices were limited, but it didn't mean that our choices were any less rich.

Our first reading was from Sirach 26:1-4, 13-16. The irony of this reading is that it talks about a "clean home" which is what I strive for but often find it lacking. This was my reading selection

For our Psalm, we wanted something that was used in regular masses. As it is a traditional Lenten/Easter Psalm, Rob and I have been hearing a lot of it lately which makes me smile at him. Our selection was based on Psalm 42:3, 5; 43:3, 4. This most definitely isn't a typical selection for a wedding but because it was Easter, it was acceptable.

Rob selected our last reading from the Old Testament. In college, he had taken a class on Revelations and wanted to use that reading selection. It was Revelations 19:1, 5-9.

Finally, our Gospel reading probably took us the longest. We wanted something that spoke of us as a couple and some of the struggles we had faced. We picked this passage:

A reading from the holy Gospel according to John 17:20-26

Jesus raised his eyes to heaven and said:
“I pray not only for my disciples,
but also for those who will believe in me through their word,
so that they may all be one,
as you, Father, are in me and I in you,
that they also may be in us,
that the world may believe that you sent me.
And I have given them the glory you gave me,
so that they may be one, as we are one,
I in them and you in me,
that they may be brought to perfection as one,
that the world may know that you sent me,
and that you loved them even as you loved me.
Father, they are your gift to me.
I wish that where I am they also may be with me,
that they may see my glory that you gave me,
because you loved me before the foundation of the world.
Righteous Father, the world also does not know you,
but I know you, and they know that you sent me.
I made known to them your name and I will make it known,
that the love with which you loved me
may be in them and I in them.”

The Gospel of the Lord.


Just before Jesus enters into his passion and death, he prays this prayer for love and unity. He looks up into heaven and desires that the glory of heaven will be made known on earth. His prayer draws upon the profound unity of the Trinity, where God the Father perfectly and fully loves God the Son and they dwell in each other’s love.

The Trinity has at times, been described in our tradition this way: The three persons of the Godhead are like a Lover, the Beloved, and the Love between them – corresponding to God the Father, who loves God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit who is the love shared between them. The seamless unity of the Father and Son (the Lover and the Beloved), is a metaphor for the unity that is desired through a sacramental marriage.

As Jesus mystically envisions heavenly glory, he desires that all in his flock are to share heaven with him. Married couples embark on a journey that is to culminate in heaven. They walk alongside each another in their earthly lives, and an indispensable part of life include a spiritual life and an eternal dimension.

This passage might be favored by couples who desire an intense bond, including a strong spiritual unity that can only come from relying upon the Holy Spirit in their relationship. Also, those who have struggled to reconcile differences between themselves, their families, or within their community of faith, might find this a useful passage. Jesus desires the same unity for them, the fullness of which will not be realized until eternity breaks through.

Unless the homilist is drawing from the phrase, “before the foundation of the world” little will be lost using the shorter form (below). It retains the Trinitarian image of unity, and preserves the vision that the community of believers is to be perfectly one.

Monday, March 08, 2010

Spring 2010

Rob and I have been married for nearly a year at this point. This last year has been extremely busy but fun.

We took a few trips: wedding in August (Justin and Kelly); wedding in October (Bekah & Ben); football game in November; and most recently, a trip to Las Vegas - you can link out to the pictures on an earlier post.

We are looking forward to our first anniversary in a month or so.

Here is to a great 2010!

Las Vegas Feb 2010 (87 photos), by Hannabert

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