enduringplum: (Babydoll)
( Oct. 10th, 2008 09:10 pm)
I finally, finally! got a hair cut after all these months! It's a huge relief not to feel my hair hanging against my neck anymore.

Miranda's Day Out )

My mom came over to help out today and give me a much-needed break, although I'm still exhausted. Miranda was up almost all night long last night, so Carl and I are both worn out and very thankful that my mom came over to cook, clean, and baby sit long enough for me to take a nap!

Speaking of my parents, today is their 27th wedding anniversary!

Breast Feeding and Diapering )
enduringplum: (Brown Sugar)
( Oct. 5th, 2008 11:54 pm)
I'm extremely sleep-deprived, but I'm certainly not complaining; the last two weeks have been wonderful and I'm looking forward to the days and weeks and all the milestones to come with Miranda. So I don't drive those of you who read this totally batty, I will be putting all my Miranda-related posts (of which I'm sure there will be very many!) behind a cut; there's nothing quite so boring as a parent who goes on and on about their children, so I'll let y'all choose when you'd like to be subjected to that sort of thing.

The Doctor, Thrush, and Diapers )
Carl and I went this evening to the Raisins from Heaven ferret rescue, which Marin (the rescue lady) runs out of her home. It was clean, well-organized, and all the ferrets looked healthy, happy, and well cared-for. With Marin's promise that she would not re-home Trixie and Spook unless they could be re-homed together and that she will e-mail me updates, I left two of my stinky babies with her. I feel very sad about it, but I just don't believe I'll be able to give them the time and attention they need after our baby is born. I chose to keep Orbit because he's at an age that makes him an elderly ferret and he is more attached to me than to Trixie or Spook, who are very closely bonded to each other and should never be separated; so far Orbit hardly seems to have noticed that the other two are missing and with a little extra attention I think he'll get over it completely without any depression, which is a legitimate concern for ferrets who have just gone through a big change. If, for any reason, Spook and Trixie cannot be placed in a good home and Marin can no longer care for them, I will be happy to take them back in, but I feel safe placing them with her after seeing her home and her obvious devotion to all the ferrets in her care.

We learned this afternoon that my mom's neighborhood does not have power yet, so instead of driving home tomorrow she and I are going to wait until electricity has been restored. Jefferson Parish has also asked residents to please not flush their toilets, because the water processing stations don't have power and there's a concern that the sewage system might back up and cause flooding, so that's a very good reason not to return until power has been fully restored!

Carl is still going to drive back tomorrow, because work will just not stop calling him and he'd prefer to be back in the city, anyway. Since our neighborhood is still without power he's going to stay with Germaine or in one of the RVs his boss has sent to the city to house some employees. He's going to drop the three outside cats (Musashi, Kira, and Sterling) off at our house with a big bowl of water and stop by to feed them every evening, so I won't have to somehow cram all the pets in to my tiny car when I finally head back.

It'll be a lot easier to make the drive with just one ferret, because I can take Orbit inside with me on bathroom stops, rather than leaving him in the car with the motor running and the A/C on and he's already leash trained, so that's not an issue like it would have been with Trixie or Spook; ferrets can die of heat exhaustion very easily, which is something I learned the hard way, so I was extremely cautious about keeping them cool throughout the evacuation. Sunny and Sayuri will also be riding back with me, but Conrad will ride with my mom and her dog, Cora.

Until power is restored to either my neighborhood or my mom's, it'll just be the five of us in the hotel room, but I can always drive over to my aunt's place to visit my mom and the rest of the family if I get too lonely or too bored. I've got my computer and my knitting, though, so I'm sure I'll be fine!
enduringplum: (Cinderella)
( Sep. 2nd, 2008 03:01 pm)
Well, we're safely ensconced in our little motel room in Memphis, Tennessee, in an area called Germantown, which is apparently famous for some annual equestrian event, as indicated by the colorful, whimisically-painted sculptures of horses placed at various intersections. Conrad has been handling hotel life pretty well, although he didn't let us get much sleep on the first night, because he had to bark at every individual who got ice from the ice machine right outside our door (why they needed ice at two and three in the morning is beyond me - these people just love their damn ice); he still cut up a little last night, but he was much better and I was able to catch a nap today, so I'm not dragging quite as badly.

My cousin's twenty-first birthday was August thirty-first, but since we were in the middle of our New Orleans-to-Memphis caravan we went out last night instead, for barbecue at the original Corky's location; I don't really like barbecue, but you've got to have barbecue at least once whenever you visit Memphis and the baked beans were delicious. While we were at their house yesterday Katie showed us some of her pictures from her school trip to Lagos, Nigeria, which were quite interesting. She's involved in a project for Princeton that sends a group of students to different countries around the world to help a village in the area set up a ceramic water filter factory; last summer she worked on the same project in a village in Nicaragua.

My aunt Karen put me in touch with a very nice woman who runs a ferret shelter here in Tennesee, about forty-five minutes away from our hotel, so we're going to pay her a visit this evening to have a look at her operation and to surrender Spooky and Trixie if I find it suitable; I spoke to her for about forty minutes yesterday, so I feel confident that her shelter will provide a good solution for us, but I still need to see it for myself before I can give up my stinky minkies and she understands that, which is additionally reassuring.

We still don't know when we'll be able to go home, but we do know that New Orleans fared pretty well and Yvette drove by my parents' house and reports that it looks like it's in great shape. I don't think our neighborhood saw any flooding, because our area wasn't mentioned at all on CNN or the Weather Channel, but I'm sure it's still without power. We still have this room reserved for a couple more days and we can extend our reservation if that becomes necessary, although we may have to change rooms, but that's fine.
enduringplum: (Brown Sugar)
( Aug. 25th, 2008 11:59 am)
The shower went well, thanks entirely to my lovely helpers: Triple_Phoenix, Miss Stacie (Triple_Phoenix's mom), Jodi, and my mom and dad. The only thing that could have improved the shower would have been if it wasn't hot as Hades, but that's August in New Orleans, after all; it was great to be able to get off my feet and in the pool after most of the shower guests had gone!

I was impressed that everyone brought some food or drinks! I expected it from the older guests, but honestly not from our friends who are our own age, but I'm glad I was surprised; we would have run out of beer and soft drinks early if they hadn't brought anything, so I'm especially glad that they all planned ahead and demonstrated their good manners.

We got a lot of wonderful gifts and all I was hoping for was that people would show up, because it was most important to me and Carl that our friends and extended family just come to celebrate with us. It was very touching, too, because all the gifts seemed to have had a lot of thought put in to them. The most adorable gifts were definitely the hand knit baby sweater and socks from Jodi and the hand knit baby hat from Jenae (please correct me on the spelling of her name if you know it, because that's just my best guess), but there wasn't a single gift we received that I don't love and know we can use; I'll have to post pictures of the knit gifts later, because they're just too cute. Linda and Joe Nelson bought us a book that is basically an idiot's guide to Baby's first year, which we should certainly get a lot of use out of - I feel that we need all the instruction we can get!

Speaking of instruction, Carl and I also completed our birthing class this weekend. The instructor covered a lot of material, but focused mainly on the different stages of labor and coping strategies that may help during each stage. She also spent a lot of time working on getting the men/partners to understand how to connect with their women during labor. Of course not all of the information she provided will apply to us, but I think that some of the exercises we did certainly helped us to connect on a deeper level on which we usually only "meet" during sex and Carl feels better now that he has a clearer idea of what to expect during each stage of labor, both physiologically and emotionally, from me and from himself. He also didn't even flinch when we watched a video that included the delivery of the placenta, so I think he'll do well with any blood he might see during our baby's birth, which was something I had been concerned about before; he doesn't have a problem with other body fluids, but seeing blood - spilled or being drawn - just gets to him.

I enjoyed hearing about her experiences working as a doula in local hospitals, including Touro, which is where we plan to deliver under Esther's care. Apparently New Orleans' hospitals are still very set in their ways when it comes to taking the newborn to the nursery for testing, rather than performing the tests in the labor-deliver-recovery room or in the postpartum room; I would much rather not be separated from my new baby just a few hours after birth, so we may have to struggle with the nursing staff over that, but hopefully Esther and Cathy (the other midwife at her new practice) will be able to help us gain leverage on that.

I need to sit down to write some "thank you" notes now, then I need to make a quick trip to the grocery store before the rain picks up again; Faye doesn't seem to have much steam left, however, so I'm not really worried.
enduringplum: (Brown Sugar)
( Aug. 19th, 2008 08:39 am)
My mom is arriving in New Orleans this evening, after having spent the summer performing her music at the Ascona jazz fest and at a cabaret in Berlin. I know the cabaret was stressful for her, because it's been years since she's done a production that required costume changes, line memorization, and so many new songs, some of which were not at all a part of their genre, but I'm sure she also had a good time. From what she's said in her e-mails, it looks like The Pfister Sisters will be spending next summer in Europe, too, and she says she plans to enjoy it more.

Everyone's Dragon*Con plans are going ahead!... without me. I really can't complain, but the kid in me still really wishes I could go this year. Hopefully everyone will have an extremely nerdy, fun time while I enjoy the peace and quiet of home.

Our baby shower/barbecue/pool party is going ahead for this weekend, or at least that's the idea. There's still a lot of stuff that needs to be done. I don't think Carl's looked in to getting a keg and I really don't have time, so I'll have to remind him or delegate the task to someone else; I don't think we'll actually need it, though, because very few people have RSVP'd. Actually, I have no idea how many people are coming, so it could be a big group with not enough food or a small group with plenty of leftovers - or it could be perfect! Whatever happens, we'll just grill some burgers, I'll make some chocolate pie, and it'll be fine.

Carl and I also have a childbirth class to attend, led by a local doula recommended highly by my midwife. It was the last possible class available before my due date, so there's no way we can miss it; Carl and I both need a better idea of what to expect in general, how to cope, and what to expect from each other. Even if the delivery turns out completely differently from every one of our preconceived notions, at least we'll be going in to the event with some feeling of preparedness.
enduringplum: (Brown Sugar)
( May. 25th, 2008 07:56 pm)
I didn't have time to do any quilting this week, which was extremely irritating, but I just got caught up with everything else... you know how it goes. I did make it to my knitting group, however, and I'm looking forward to going this Wednesday, even if I just continue knitting my zigzag scarf; the meringue yarnis fun to work with.

I had started a baby blanket, but I can't find it since moving; I hadn't completed much of it at all, but it's still on the circular needles, which I really do want to find.

I also can't find my beginner's knitting book, which I want to find because I'd love to make a simple baby sweater or cardigan. I found a pattern on Ravelry that looks pretty simple, but I don't know how to make things like button holes, so I'd love to have the book handy to guide me through those techniques. There's no telling where it is at this point, though. It may be packed in a box somewhere, forgotten somewhere in our former closet at my parent's house, or buried in a stack of books in our office.

I would also like to knit some baby socks, but I think I'll need some devoted instruction from someone knowledgeable about socks. I could be worrying about it too much, but socks just seem tricky. Baby socks might be a project Bedstemor and I can work on while I'm in Denmark for a few weeks; a quilt isn't exactly an easy project to travel with, after all.

I know it's okay to fly in the U.S. with knitting needles, but I'm not so sure what the regulations are like abroad. If anyone has any idea or can point to a website where I can find out more, I would really appreciate it; I can't sleep on those long, international flights, so it would be wonderful to be able to knit while everyone else snores.

Baby Clothes )

Now I've got to put away the baby clothes I've sorted through, freeze my leftover red beans and sausage, and clean out the 'frige; there's a mysterious and slightly funky odor the origin of which I haven't been able to determine, so all the drawers and shelves are going to get a good washing down.
enduringplum: (Gush)
( May. 22nd, 2008 12:35 pm)
I had my twenty weeks checkup and ultrasound today. Triple_Phoenix and my mom went with me to see the ultrasound, since Carl wasn't able to take the time off work to make it. Much to my relief, the ultrasound technician didn't even look at the baby's genitals, so there's no need to worry about my mom finding out and accidentally letting it slip to someone; she's a little irritated, but she can just be surprised along with the rest of us.

The ultrasound technician took a moment to look at my ovaries at my request, which are slightly enlarged, but I don't have any large cysts. She looked at all the baby's organs and spinal cord, which all look like they're developing well, and the baby is measuring appropriately, as well. The tech printed out a couple photos to bring home, but it's difficult to distinguish much in them; the eye sockets can just barely made be made out in one and the other one has a distinct profile of the face and round tummy, but it looks almost the same upside down as it does right side up.

The ultrasound paddle felt very strange on my belly. Getting an ultrasound while pregnant feels extremely different from getting an ultrasound either very early in pregnancy or before pregnancy; it felt like the tech was sliding the paddle over a rubber ball resting over my other organs, which is essentially what the uterus is, but it was just a very strange, new sensation that I didn't anticipate from my previous ultrasounds.

My mom got to see Esther again and Triple_Phoenix was able to meet her for the first time; it's important to me that the important people in my life meet Esther, since she will be responsible for my well being and the well being of my baby when it comes time to deliver. We listened to the heartbeat and talked about what I've been eating and reading, and about different birthing philosophies. I also asked about all my blood work, which all came back perfectly fine.

Before dropping Triple_Phoenix off at her apartment she and I stopped at the library and I checked out a book by one of the authors Esther recommended.

I was happy I wasn't asked to allow a vaginal exam, but Esther knows how painful they are for me, so I know she won't do any unnecessary exams. I'm going in for another glucose tolerance test and a checkup the day before we leave for Denmark, so I can get some free samples of my pre-natal vitamin to bring on the trip; Medicaid won't let me refill my prescription until the day I am on the last pill, which is extremely inconvenient for any travel plans.

Off topic, but exciting nonetheless... Triple_Phoenix may be getting a job at Build a Bear! I want to make one of those bears.
enduringplum: (Blush)
( May. 11th, 2008 09:41 pm)
My mom called me around eight this morning, saying that Calvin was doing poorly, so we should come over to help move him outside so he could relieve himself. When we got to the house, he was lying on the lawn beside my dad, where he had been able to relieve himself and looked alert, but he was unable to walk or stand. When we brought him back in, we put him on his bed and he just sat, looking around, and seeming to enjoy the attention. My mom and I then made a quick trip to the Whole Foods for some Arsenicum Album that the homeopathic veterinarian recommended we give him. After we gave him the herbal remedy, he seemed like he was finally able to relax, although his breathing was still very labored and he was still refusing all food and water. Around ten-thirty in the morning he seized up briefly, his breathing stopped, and Calvin died, but it was very quick and did not seem painful; he would have been fourteen years old this summer.
enduringplum: (Blush)
( Mar. 26th, 2008 09:47 am)
We moved in most of our things on Saturday, with a lot of help from Mischa and Germaine (I can't thank you enough, gentlemen!). We still have a couple pieces of furniture to move and quite a few boxes that are still in storage, but mainly we just need to move all our hanging clothes from my parents' house.

We got television service Monday, internet yesterday, and we ordered our stove and refrigerator last night. Now all we need to do is pick out the right washer and dryer and it'll really feel a lot more like our home! The 'frige should be here Thursday and the stove will arrive in about ten days.

We're having some ridiculous issues with the New Orleans Sewerage and Water Board. Although I canceled our water service at Wilton in either late October or early to mid-November in 2005, the S&WB does not believe I ever canceled service and continued to bill us for water service at Wilton until February of this year, which racked up a more than 700 dollar water bill for us. Obviously, we can't afford to pay that and they won't give us water service until we either pay it or complete litigation with them; how they would like us to get water service in between now and the completion of any litigation is beyond me and they offered no solutions. It's this kind of thing that makes people dislike Orleans Parish.

Pregnancy and Life In General )

Our pregnancy isn't a big secret anymore, since I'm less than a week to my second trimester, so everyone should feel free to discuss it with anyone else. Complete strangers will be lucky if they get away from me without having to talk about it! Although I will not thrust creepy ultrasound pictures upon anyone who does not ask to see them.
enduringplum: (Blush)
( Mar. 13th, 2008 04:29 pm)
Carl was offered a job today. To work in Dubai for two years.

We're going to discuss it further when he gets home, but right now I don't know just what to think, except that this is an opportunity we probably can't afford to pass up.
Almost as if he timed it that way, my phone rang as I was stepping out the door this morning to go get my driver's license renewed; it was my dad. So, instead of finally getting my driver's license renewed, I drove over to his house to help him build a simple hutch for his ginormous door desk. I didn't mind, both because it was interesting and because I don't want my dad to do anything to hurt his back. After we did that and moved some of my parent's belongings out of their FEMA trailer, we put together a baby shower gift for Matt and Debbie, then sat around and talked about cooking for a while; since my dad's been out of work while recovering from his second back surgery, he's become quite the gourmand.

I've lost a lot of time I was going to use to finish up my game's character creation system, so I've got to exclusively focus on that tonight. Of course, no one else in this house is willing to lift a spatula to cook anything, so I'll probably have to take some time out to keep us fed. I feel I'm making good progress on my Game Chef entry, although I'm not exactly sure how best to manage my time since this is my first time trying this. I feel confident I'll figure it out and I'm really enjoying working on it! If I stay on schedule, I'll have the character creation system ready for testing by Tuesday night and should be in the process of working out the conflict resolution system. If you're interested in tabletop role playing games and would like to know more about my work in process, go here or feel free to visit the official Game Chef website; the link leads to my contest group and my user name is JackieSixty.

I'm beginning to get extremely upset with our room mate who has moved out for the time being. I feel like he's just dicking us around and avoiding us at this point, although I also know much of that attitude is related to his own mental illness and he is certainly not the only one of us to struggle with mental illness. However, he is treating us unfairly and disrespectfully and the issue must be addressed, because we should not suffer due to his shortsightedness and self pity, especially not when we'd help him if we were given the chance.
enduringplum: (Glare)
( Feb. 9th, 2007 02:10 pm)
-my dad has to have back surgery again; it will be on Monday
-my right eye will not quit twitching and it is very annoying; I think it is from lack of sleep
-money is especially tight for everyone right now, which might be the reason my eye is twitching - who knows?
-I have more than thirty voice mails on my cell phone, but I cannot bring myself to listen to them
-waiting with bated breath to see if I will menstruate this month since I did last month; it would be refreshing to have two periods in two months!
enduringplum: (Poppies)
( Nov. 4th, 2006 12:54 am)
It's hard for me to believe it's nearly Christmas again— it somehow feels like my second one ever— and so much is still in flux! It's surreal, to say the least, but it's still the most wonderful time of the year and last year it was a balm for my hurting heart.

...And this year will be so much better, because Bestemor is coming!
enduringplum: (Casual)
( May. 11th, 2006 12:23 pm)
My little cousin's ([profile] kcf_chicken) graduation is this weekend and I'm ridiculously proud of her; in the fall she'll begin attending Princeton. I might be jealous if she wasn't also such a nice girl and cool person. :D
enduringplum: (Mystique)
( Apr. 25th, 2006 07:03 pm)
Being young is very complicated, especially when one is young and "in love;" I know this from personal experience! Life for my best friend's younger sister just got a lot more complicated, because she may be pregnant and she's only seventeen. Her dad seems to be handling it pretty well, but her mom blew her top when she first came to them with the news. It's not something to freak out over, it's just a mistake, but I certainly understand her mom's reaction; my mom would have reacted exactly the same way— if not worse— if I had told her when I thought I was pregnant at about that age (I may have even been a year younger). I love this girl like she's my own sister and I hope I communicated that to her when I spoke to her this evening. I also let her know that I'll do anything I can to help her in any way I can, and that it is not acceptable for her to move to Missouri to be with the father or to postpone college; she has a full scholarship which she'll lose if she postpones going to college for even a year. I firmly believe that the boy in question is in no way prepared to handle the responsibilities of fatherhood, as he's in his twenties, still lives at home with his mom and dad, and has no real college or professional experience, not to mention the fact that he can't even be bothered to be polite to this girl's parents, friends, or family; that is a clear red flag.

What it comes down to is that this is just a mistake and one that any girl her age might make. It's a mistake I nearly made and one her mother did make, but it's not one that will ruin her life unless she allows that or isn't given the support she needs, which will be a lot! I will support her completely and so will her sister, so I just hope she'll let herself rely on us.
enduringplum: (Casual)


( Apr. 18th, 2006 10:00 am)
My dad is— finally— having back surgery as I type this. He put it off for so many years that it came to down to having the surgery now or losing function of one of his legs, so he quit being stubborn and afraid and consented. His surgery is scheduled for ten o'clock and should take a little longer than an hour, so I'm going to go down to the hospital soon to keep my mom company and wait for him to come out of the operating room.
enduringplum: (Hitomi Red)
( Dec. 27th, 2005 03:16 pm)

Or, in the words of [livejournal.com profile] triple_phoenix's and [livejournal.com profile] switchknive's mom, Merry Holiday )

Jelly Belly is giving me a serious tummy ache. Maybe I should sue them for making these damn things so delicious. One flavor that's not delicious? Baked bean. I sampled it at the grocery store, it was atrocious.

Keep in Touch )

Thank Yous )



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