the sometimes senseless ravings (and the occassional rant) of an aspiring marine ecologist who may enjoy killing things a little too much

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Affordable Day Care Is Hard To Find

today, between studying for comps, running HPLC, and being a bum playing solitaire, i made about a million phone calls to day care centers around town. we've decided to try and do day care for only three days a week, since i should be nearly finished with my lab work by the time we need it, and i will only have to do my 20 hours a week at the sea lab. i can do my data analysis/dissertation writing from home. plus, chad's mom can pop over for an extra day a week if we need her to.

sounds good, right? so what's the problem? well, the vast majority of day care centers do not offer part time day care for babies. once they turn 2, you're golden. but before then, options are woefully scarce, and the waiting lists are LOOONG. of the 20 or 30 day care centers i've called exactly three of them offer part time day care for babies. one of them costs more for part time care than many other centers charge for full time infant care, so that's out (because we're not rich, yo, and we can't afford $129 a week for 3 days of day care), one sounded kind of shady (the woman who answered the phone acted like she had no idea what was going on, and there were tons of screaming children in the background) and they don't have any openings and don't know when they will have one, and the last one sounds great but doesn't have a spot until may.

this afternoon i toured the last day care center and went ahead and paid the registration fee to hold the open spot in may. the day care teachers seem competent and caring, the price is affordable ($75 per week for 3 days, $100 per week for 5 days), they work with your child's schedule instead of trying to force all the kids to eat and nap at the same time, and it isn't as far out of our way as many of the others (though there are at least three day care centers closer to our house, one of which is the extremely expensive one). so our kid will have day care guaranteed for the first week of may, but what we'll do before then i have no idea. chad's mom can probably come over a couple of days a week, or we will have to put the baby in a full time day care somewhere else for 4-6 weeks. or maybe a spot will open up at our day care sooner than may. the girl at the front desk said they may have a spot coming open in march, but there are no guarantees about that. she said she'll call if we can get in earlier. i'm keeping my fingers crossed.

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

A Little Worried

so, i went to the baby doctor for my regular monthly appointment today. mostly, everything is on track. she measured my belly (this was the first time - she'll do that at every visit from now on), and i'm apparently the size i'm supposed to be. i've gained 5 lbs. since my last visit, which is also good (that makes 12 lbs. total weight gain so far). the baby's heartbeat sounds good. the thing that has me a bit concerned is that my blood pressure was a little high. the doc said it wouldn't really be classified as 'high blood pressure' but it's higher than is normal for me. she said it's probably just because i had a really active day (cleaning tanks and taking apart the flow-through system i used for my lab experiments, going up and down the stairs a lot), but i should go in and let the nurse check my bp again next week just in case. if it's still a little high, i'll have to see the doc again before my next regularly scheduled visit near the end of october. let's hope it's normal then. in the meantime, maybe i should lay off the salt and vinegar chips. and the super easy but sodium-laden ramen in a cup. and even the chinese food. :( i really like chinese food. but it has so much blood pressure-raising sodium. boo.

i also made the appointment for my next regular visit, when i have to take the glucose tolerance test to test for gestational diabetes. blah. an hour before my appointment, i have to drink half a bottle of this crazy orange drink that i hope won't taste awful, and i'm not allowed to eat or drink anything except water (and that crazy orange thing) after midnight the day before my appointment. as a definite 'grazer', i am not looking forward to that. my appointment is for 10:15 (the earliest time they had available), so i won't be able to eat anything until after that. that's gonna be hard, considering i'll be awake for about 3 or 4 hours before then. i'd normally have breakfast around 7:00 before heading for the lab and then have a snack around 9:30 or 10:00, so i'm not sure how i'll handle waking up at my regular time (6:00 or 6:30, depending on what i have to do that day) and not eating until at least 10:30 (i am SO taking a snack to the dr.'s office with me - and i plan to eat it as soon as they draw the blood they need).

slightly more exciting, i also received a packet of useful information from the nurse about childbirth education, newborn care, breastfeeding, and infant cpr classes. most of them are just two-hour classes, but the childbirth one can either be two hours one night a week for four weeks or one saturday. i'm leaning toward the saturday one. next to that one on the info sheet it says that the saturday class isn't made for couples who want a completely natural birth, but i plan to have an epidural (umm, i don't really deal with pain so well, and i'd like to be aware of something more than the pain when the baby is actually born. you know, like the baby himself.), so that's not a big deal. i don't know anyone who has had a problem with an epidural, and everyone i know who had one was completely fine (and so were their babies).

and that was pretty much my day - taking apart and cleaning the flow-through tank system from my lab experiments, setting up an assay to run tomorrow (thus all the running up and down stairs), and going to the doctor. i'll try to post another pregnancy photo soon for all you guys who don't get to see me every week. i'll post at least a photo a month to document the rest of my pregnancy (and how ginormous i'm getting - i have never weighed this much in my life), so you guys have that to look forward to for about the next 18 weeks. after that, you can look forward to baby pictures! and pictures of me being not huge again!

Saturday, September 08, 2007

Ultrasound Photos

but not the inappropriate ones. thought you guys might finally like to see what our little max (if we don't change our minds about the name) looks like now (or what he looked like about 10 days ago).

you can clearly see that he is an actual baby and not a vaguely baby-shaped teddy graham in this round of photos. his legs are bent at the knee (so his feet are pointing down - the sonographer also took a photo of just his feet, which i didn't post), and that little blob up by his head is a tiny fist, getting ready to whale on me. the black hole looking thing in his chest is his heart, which we could see beating at a healthy 146 bpm. i kind of wish i owned a stethoscope, since the baby books say that at this point i may be able to hear his heart beat with one (as opposed to the doppler device the doctor used at my last visit - the one before the ultrasound).

Thursday, September 06, 2007

Halfway There!

i can see that this is rapidly morphing into a pregnancy/baby blog, but oh well. that's pretty much the biggest thing in my life right now (understandably so, i think). well, that and putting off studying for comps (which i still need to set a date for). oh well.

i know you've all been anxiously awaiting some photo documentation of my pregnancy, and i am here to oblige. to defend myself for not posting photos sooner, i am just now reaching the point where i have any sort of baby belly. chad says it's still not much of one, and he seems pretty impatient for me to look noticeably pregnant. we'll see what you guys think.

here's a front view of me halfway through my pregnancy. as the doc said, not huge yet, but that will come soon.

and here's a side view. the pregnancy is much more obvious from this angle (umm, ignore the random piles of clothes everywhere).

as of last wednesday, i had gained a total of 7 lbs. at my next checkup that should increase to about 11 lbs. and yes, those are my regular jeans (i love those jeans with their cute butt pockets and all). however, they are not buttoned. because the buttoning has become way uncomfortable. but thanks to motherhood maternity's maternity sleeve, i no longer have to button my pants. which i pretty much love.

tomorrow marks the 20th week of the pregnancy - the halfway point! i'm excited about that. and it only took 4 1/2 months for me to look at all pregnant. oh well. hopefully the next 4 1/2 months will pass quickly (but not too quickly) and our little guy will continue to look/sound healthy and happy. one of my biggest fears right now is that something will be wrong and i won't notice. or that i'll feel some small twinge that i should call the doctor about but think it's nothing. i mean, all the pregnancy books say that little aches and pains are commonplace during pregnancy... but they also list symptoms you should call the doc about, and sometimes they seem to contradict themselves (some abdominal achiness and occasional sharp pains and increased discharge is normal, but if you have both you should call the doctor - wtf? you just said these symptoms are normal!). oh well. i've pretty much made up my mind not freak out about anything, but i ask my doc random questions like that at my regular appointments.

ok, enough baby talk for now.

Sunday, September 02, 2007

Baby Registry Success!

just a quick note to let everyone know in advance that chad and i went shopping and registering today, and i have posted links to our baby registries on my sidebar for anyone who wishes to buy us sweet baby gifts (which will be much appreciated, you can be sure). chad's mom has already gone a wee bit crazy with the baby clothes buying (chad came home with 14 baby outfits, 9 or 10 bibs, and 2 or 3 wee baby hats yesterday), and soon the in-laws will be purchasing our crib (even though for now it remains on the registry - this is so they buy the one we want and yet do not have to spend tons of $).

when we registered at babies-r-us they gave us a sweet free gift box with samples of diapers, wipes, and creams, as well as a free bottle and pacifier, which is really nice.

ok, i got the point across - we have registered for baby stuff. no pressure to buy things or anything, though.

Saturday, September 01, 2007

It's a Boy!

pretty much everybody who reads this will know that by now, but still, i thought it appropriate to let the internet in on the news. i even have a sweet ultrasound picture to prove it. but i think it's a tad inappropriate to post that particular photo, as i am not into kiddie porn (even when it features yet-to-be-born kiddies). let's just say that the ultrasound technician felt it was a good idea to zoom in on the baby's legs and print a picture complete with an arrow pointing to the relevant parts and labeled 'it's a boy!'. it really is kind of funny, but once again, i will not be sharing that one with the entire world.

actually, i'm not going to post any of the new ultrasound pics just yet, as i'm not really in the mood to scan them right now. so you'll just have to wait.

but you can rest assured that all is well with the baby (kelly is going to have to come up with a nickname other than thetinytina now that we know he's a boy). all parts and organs are present and accounted for, his heart is beating healthily, and he kicks me pretty regularly, which chad seems to find amusing. last night i got the hiccups and was holding my breath to get rid of them when chad said, "you better take a breath or you're gonna get kicked." at which point i laughed then hiccuped and had to start all over with the breath-holding.

i'm starting to reach the point at which those who know me can tell i'm pregnant by looking at me (i swear, i'll post a nice side-view photo soon), but it's still not so obvious that total strangers (or even anyone who didn't already know i was pregnant) can tell. at the doctor on wednesday, she told me to enjoy this month because it's the last one where i won't be huge. lesley (bless her) is supposed to bring me some of her old maternity clothes next week, which is really awesome of her. she's really been a big help so far, lending me stuff and answering questions and all. i've bought a few maternity items of my own so far (a few shirts, a hoodie, a couple of pairs of pants), but i just hate the thought of buying lots of clothes that i'm only going to wear for a few months. so thanks be to lesley for letting me borrow things (plus she said it's hard for short people to find maternity clothes, which i've found is really true. apparently clothing companies think that pregnancy makes your legs five miles long) and answering random questions.

chad and i are going to hit up babies-r-us tomorrow to start registering and maybe go ahead and buy a few baby things (probably stuff to decorate to his room, mostly) now that we know he's a boy. we'll probably also go ahead and register at walmart to make life easier for family members residing in the middle of nowhere without such niceties as target and babies-r-us. kelly gave us our first baby present yesterday (although i know that nessa also bought a baby present in germany - thanks, nessa) - an absolutely adorable blue sleeper with lots of sea creatures on it. i'm very excited about it, and now that i know we're having a boy, i'm getting a little impatient about things. january 25 suddenly seems very far away.

as you all probably know, we've been thinking about names for a while now, and the more i think about it, the more i like max evan. chad really wants to name him maximus (which i absolutely hate as a legal name but would be fine with as a nickname), but i think he would be ok with max. he also said that he'd be ok with maximus as a middle name. i also really like alex as a first name, but i'm not so sure about alexander maximus. max evan is so much better - and so much easier for a little guy to learn how to spell. plus, if we name him max, chad can still call him maximus as a pet name, but if we name him alex, we're going to call him alex. chad said he likes the idea of maximus as a middle name because then when the kid is in high school, he can choose to be called maximus if we wants to. i, on the other hand, am really annoyed when people suddenly decide to be called by their middle names after a decade or so of being called by their first names. so i'm leaning toward max evan, and chad says he pretty much feels the same about either name - they're ok but not as good as maximus.