Friday, July 31, 2009
Two days ago, after an especially good batch of Barry's pork fried rice, I went to the bathroom to floss and felt like I just couldn't get what-ever-it-was out of my teeth. I took my little floss/pick thing and just watched TV while flossing... It got to the point where I just gave up, thinking it might just be in my head. As the day progressed through, my tooth started to hurt. Take-three with the floss: no avail. I go to bed.
Yesterday I was hoping it'd be better when I woke up, but it wasn't. I flossed like 3 times before I gave up. I called the dentist. Honestly, I was afraid some pork got stuck underneath my crown, then I'd be in BIG trouble. I felt kinda silly calling the dentist basically saying "Can you floss for me?" I didn't think it was THAT big of a deal, but she was ready to accommodate me right away, so I left work about 10:30 to trek across town.
As I sat in the chair, feeling stupid for going to the dentist for being an inept flosser, they seemed quite concerned. I guess it wasn't that uncommon? She worked at it for a good minute or 2 before she was able to retrieve the tiniest piece of what i am assuming was 2-day old char sui. Ga-ROSS. PHEW! Am I done? Nope. She gets out a drill. EH? She then proceeds to sand down my tooth - for what i wasn't quite sure, but 20 minutes later I was back in the car with sore, but food-free gums. I didn't even sign in or out! I don't even think they're going to charge me.
And this morning I'm pain-free. I love my dentist.
Thursday, July 30, 2009
Sooo.... I wonder... am I showing? or am I using this pregnancy as an excuse to let it all hang out?Hm...
The undercarriage of the Saturn V rocket. Only the largest rocket ever made.
Wednesday, July 29, 2009
Tasting and Smelling
"Until recently, no serious consideration was given to the possibilities for olfaction in utero, since researchers assumed smelling depended on air and breathing. However, the latest research has opened up a new world of possibilities.
"The nose develops between 11 and 15 weeks. Many chemical compounds can cross the placenta to join the amniotic fluid, providing the fetus with tastes and odors. The amniotic fluid surrounding the fetus bathes the oral, nasal, and pharyngeal cavities, and babies breathe it and swallow it, permitting direct access to receptors of several chemosensory systems: taste buds in three locations, olfactory epithelia, vomeronasal system, and trigeminal system (Smotherman and Robinson, 1995).
"Associations formed in utero can alter subsequent fetal behavior and are retained into postnatal life. The evidence for direct and indirect learning of odors in utero has been reviewed by Schaal, Orgeur, and Rogan (1995). They point to an extraordinary range of available odiferous compounds, an average of 120 in individual samples of amniotic fluid! In one experiment, babies registered changes in fetal breathing and heart rate when mothers drank coffee, whether it was caffeinated or decaffeinated. Newborns are drawn to the odor of breastmilk, although they have no previous experience with it. Researchers think this may come from cues they have learned in prenatal life."
Listening and Hearing
"Sounds have a surprising impact upon the fetal heart rate: a five second stimulus can cause changes in heart rate and movement which last up to an hour. Some musical sounds can cause changes in metabolism. "Brahm's Lullabye," for example, played six times a day for five minutes in a premature baby nursery produced faster weight gain than voice sounds played on the same schedule (Chapman, 1975).
Researchers in Belfast have demonstrated that reactive listening begins at 16 weeks g.a., two months sooner than other types of measurements indicated. Working with 400 fetuses, researchers in Belfast beamed a pure pulse sound at 250-500 Hz and found behavioral responses at 16 weeks g.a.--clearly seen via ultrasound (Shahidullah and Hepper, 1992). This is especially significant because reactive listening begins eight weeks before the ear is structurally complete at about 24 weeks.
These findings indicate the complexity of hearing, lending support to the idea that receptive hearing begins with the skin and skeletal framework, skin being a multireceptor organ integrating input from vibrations, thermo receptors, and pain receptors. This primal listening system is then amplified with vestibular and cochlear information as it becomes available. With responsive listening proven at 16 weeks, hearing is clearly a major information channel operating for about 24 weeks before birth."
"In utero, eyelids remain closed until about the 26th week. However, the fetus is sensitive to light, responding to light with heart rate accelerations to projections of light on the abdomen. This can even serve as a test of well-being before birth. Although it cannot be explained easily, prenates with their eyelids still fused seem to be using some aspect of "vision" to detect the location of needles entering the womb, either shrinking away from them or turning to attack the needle barrel with a fist (Birnholz, Stephens, and Faria, 1978). Similarly, at 20 weeks g.a., twins in utero have no trouble locating each other and touching faces or holding hands!"
Senses in Action
"Ultrasonographers have recorded fetal erections as early as 16 weeks g.a., often in conjunction with finger sucking, suggesting that pleasurable self-stimulation is already possible. In the third trimester, when prenates are monitored during parental intercouse, their hearts fluctuate wildly in accelerations and decelerations greater than 30 beats per minute, or show a rare loss of beat-to-beat variability, accompanied by a sharp increase in fetal movement (Chayen et al, 1986). This heart activity is directly associated with paternal and maternal orgasms! Other experiments measuring fetal reactions to mothers' drinking one ounce of vodka in a glass of diet ginger ale show that breathing movements stop within 3 to 30 minutes. This hiatus in breathing lasts more than a half hour. Although the blood alcohol level of the mothers was low, as their blood alcohol level declined, the percentage of fetal breathing movements increased (Fox et al, 1978).
"Babies have been known to react to the experience of amniocentesis (usually done around 16 weeks g.a.) by shrinking away from the needle, or, if a needle nicks them, they may turn and attack it. Mothers and doctors who have watched this under ultrasound have been unnerved. Following amniocentesis, heart rates gyrate. Some babies remain motionless, and their breathing motions may not return to normal for several days.
"Finally, researchers have discovered that babies are dreaming as early as 23 weeks g.a.when rapid eye movement sleep is first observed (Birnholz, 1981). Studies of premature babies have revealed intense dreaming activity, occupying 100% of sleep time at 30 weeks g.a., and gradually diminishing to around 50% by term. Dreaming is a vigorous activity involving apparently coherent movements of the face and extremities in synchrony with the dream itself, manifested in markedly pleasant or unpleasant expressions. Dreaming is also an endogenous activity, neither reactive or evoked, expressing inner mental or emotional conditions. Observers say babies behave like adults do when they are dreaming (Roffwarg, Muzio, and Dement 1966)."
Then me, 12 weeks later, decides to take the drink.
Now, I just found out another co-worker is 4 1/2 weeks behind me! OMG!
Soooo, if you're looking to stay bun-less, don't drink the water at The Jacksonville Bank!
This past weekend Barry's brother, Willie, visited us from NYC. Every time he comes to town we always end up doing some fun and exciting things, not to mention a lot of great eating. Friday night we went to my favorite Italian restaurant, Sorbello's. If you're a resident of Orange Park/Jacksonville, you've more than likely heard of this place. It is the best Italian I've had outside of Italy itself - it's almost like going back! The best part is that the owners are friends with Barry's family, so its a great "Cheers" kinda place (They always know your name!)
Saturday I think we just lounged around the house most of the day. Whenever Willie comes, he always brings us goodies from NYC, and this time was no exception. He brought us a huge slab of Katz pastrami, 3 pounds of char sui (Chinese BBQ pork), some Chinese roasted duck, a pound of Katz hot dogs, and a big ol' tub of Katz deli mustard. YUM-O. If you're not familiar w/ Katz, its just the best damn kosher deli in NYC, if not the world! The pastrami melts in your mouth like butter... I digress. We didn't go out Saturday because we had plenty to eat at the house. Sat night we went and saw The Ugly Truth. It was really funny and not your typical romantic comedy. Oh! and I made Chocolate Cracked Earth again, too. :)
We also introduced Willie to RedBox. They don't have these in NY yet, so he was just amazed at how cheap and easy it is to rent movies. So throughout the weekend, we watched Miracle at St. Anna (very interesting movie) and Knowing (very good :))
I took Monday off, since he wasn't leaving until Tuesday. We decided to head down to Kennedy Space Center. I hadn't been since i was a little kid, so it was really great to visit! I took some pics, so as soon as my lazy ass gets around to it, I'll post them. :)
Friday, July 24, 2009
I'm just ready for this sinus thing to QUIT! I mean, they say it gets easier after the first trimester, right? Well, that's tomorrow. Deadline is here. I'd like to breath easy now, ok?
Wednesday, July 22, 2009
How ridiculous is it that this 'tweener book is having such an impact on me? I took a full hour today for lunch, sitting in the covered patio of my favorite downtown lunch spot, flipping page after page, wishing I could take longer than my hour. (I normally don't take more than 20-30 minutes for lunch.)
Stephanie Meyer has an amazing way to take you back to feeling 17 again, and all of those rushing feelings of infatuation and not knowing has been making my heart flutter all over again.
You see, my Edward was Billy Yoakley. *Sigh* Billy made my heart flutter like no one else. He was the cutest boy in my youth group and I remember feeling like a yo-yo every time he would talk to me (or wouldn't). My sister said my heart would beat "Bil-ly, Bil-ly" instead of the normal pit-pat. So, because I have nothing else I'd prefer to be doing at work right now, I'm going to tell you a story...
The Facebook of 1997 was AOL. After every shift at work, I'd stay up to the wee hours chatting online. This Friday night was no different. I got off of work about 11:00, and without changing out of my Publix uniform, I was on AOL minutes after I got home. This particular night, Billy Yoakley was hanging out with his friend Matt online. We started chatting and he asked if I wanted to hang out. Mind you, I'm only 17 and it's 11:30 at night. I think my curfew was 12:30, and there was no way my parents would let me LEAVE the house this late. Luckily, my parents were out of town that weekend. Only my sister was home, and she was fast asleep already. I mean, BILLY YOAKLEY asked ME if i wanted to hang out. So i called my friend Erin and she was in, so I quickly changed into the sexiest outfit i had, grabbed the keys to my mom's minivan, and left a note for my sister ("Took the van, Don't worry, I'll be home later.") I picked up Erin, made a quick stop for some cigarettes (Erin was a year older) and we were off to Fleming Island to meet up with the boys.
We picked them up (they were waiting outside) and followed their directions to a dock on Doctor's Lake. We sat under the stars, chatted and flirted until "it" happened. BILLY YOAKLEY KISSED ME! It was the most glorious kiss! I had been waiting for over 2 years for him to like me and he finally kissed me! It was amazing.
After who knows how long, Erin and I were on our way home. I was elated. I kept screaming and hitting the wheel; i was overjoyed! HE KISSED ME! As we turned into my neighborhood, though, those feelings of happiness quickly turned to dread.
My sister's bedroom light was on.
I was freaking out. I slowly walked in the house, Erin behind me. Christy was sitting on the edge of her bed with the note. She threatened that she had already called Erin's mom (she really didn't) but told her to get her stuff together, that she was taking her home. When she got back, the only thing I remember her saying to me was "If you don't tell Mom and Dad, I will." I was nauseated. Literally. I'd never done anything like this before. I hadn't even skipped school before. I ran to the bathroom and threw up. It was only Friday and my parents weren't due back until Sunday. The whole weekend I was nauseous. I was supposed to be leaving for Europe in 2 weeks. What if they don't let me go? Sunday came, and I was somehow able to get it out to my parents that I stole their car in the middle of the night to meet up with a boy that they knew I'd been infatuated with for 2 years. Luckily, I was still able to go to Europe (the money had already been spent), but I was unfortunately, grounded from Erin, Matt, and Billy for an excruciating month, and my curfew my entire senior year was pushed back to 11:00pm.
Apparently, the only reason I got caught was because of the note. Christy had gotten up to get a drink of water and saw it on the door. Without it, she wouldn't have even noticed the car missing from the garage. Damn me for being 'responsible'.
...and that is the Story of Billy, my Edward.
Tuesday, July 21, 2009
Securing Our Children's Rights, Inc. (SOCR), is pleased to announce HB 3 - Adoption, for the 2010 legislative session, introduced by Representative Mary Brandenburg, D-West Palm Beach, that is a full repeal of Florida's ban on adoption by its gay and lesbian citizens. Senator Nan Rich has a companion bill in drafting at this date.
Governor Crist has declared Wednesday, July 22, 2009 as Explore Adoption Day and we must contact Governor Crist and the legislature to Explore Adoption by repealing the ban.
WHEN: Wednesday, July 22, 2009
WHO: Governor Charlie Crist (850) 488-7146 or email to Charlie.Crist@myflorida.com
House Speaker Larry Cretul 850-488-1450 or 352-873-6564 or email to Larry.Cretul@myfloridahouse.gov
Senate President Jeff Atwater 850-487-5100 or 561-625-5101 or email to firstname.lastname@example.org
Your Florida Representative - www.myfloridahouse.gov
Your Florida Senator - www.flsenate.gov
THE ASK: Please ask the Governor to support the repeal of the adoption ban on gay Floridians and ask him to encourage the legislative leadership to pass the repeal. Please ask the House Speaker and the Senate President to support the repeal and encourage Committee hearings for the bills. Please ask your representative and senator to support the repeal, and to become a co-sponsor.
FLORIDIANS READY TO REPEAL BAN
A poll, released January 22, 2009 by the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute, found that a clear majority of Floridians, 55% to 39%, believe the Florida legislature should repeal the ban.
Click here for poll information We are very hopeful that this independent poll will help give Florida legislators the assurances they need to do the right thing. Now we know that it's not only the right thing to do from a scientific and child welfare perspective, but a majority of Floridians now support the repeal as well.
TALKING POINTS - Gay and Lesbian Parenting: THE FACTS
(1) Florida's gay adoption ban was passed in 1977 at the height of Anita Bryant's anti-gay "Save the Children" campaign. This law has done significant damage to children in foster care by not allowing the best interest of the child to be considered on a case-by-case basis. Curtis Peterson, the lead Senate sponsor, said upon passage of the ban, "We're trying to send [homosexuals] a message. We're really tired of you. We wish you'd go back into the closet."
(2) Destructive impact on children - over 4,500 children languish in Florida's foster care system today. The adoption ban arbitrarily excludes hundreds, if not thousands, of potential parents based solely on the irrelevant criteria of sexual orientation. These adults could provide stable, loving, PERMANENT homes to many of these children if this ban were lifted.
(3) In 2003, the Evan B. Donaldson Adoption Institute released a research study, stating, "reality on the ground is outstripping the pace of the debate. That is, a growing number of lesbians and gay men are becoming parents and are living as families every day, irrespective of what the policymakers do or say."
(4) There is no credible scientific evidence that the sexual orientation of parents has any effects either on the quality of parenting or on the well-being of their children. In fact, the reliable social scientific evidence indicates that lesbian and gay parents are as fit, effective and successful at parenting as their heterosexual counterparts. (See American Academy of Pediatrics February 2002 Policy Statement, Vol. 109, No. 2, pp. 341-344)
(5) At least eleven (11) mainstream child welfare, social science, and professional organizations have issued policy statements SUPPORTING adoption by lesbian, gay, bisexual and/or transgender (LGBT) people: Child Welfare League of Amerian, American Bar Association, American Medical Association, American Academy of PediatricsAmerican Psychiatric Association, American Psychoanalytical Association, American Academy of Family Physicians, American Psychological Association, American Academy of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry, National Association of Social Workers, and North American Council on Adoptable Children
(6) Decades of research indicate that optimal development for children is based not on the sexual orientation of the parents, but on stable attachments to committed and nurturing adults. Children with two parents, regardless of the parents' sexual orientation, do better than children with only one parent. (American Psychiatric Association 11/2002 policy statement)
(7) Adoption decisions should be based on an individualized assessment of what is in the best interests of the child to be adopted. Applicants should be assessed on the basis of their ability to successfully parent a child in need of family membership and not on irrelevant considerations such as sexual orientation.
(8) Regardless of what policy makers do or say, gay Floridians are raising children and legal protection is necessary for these children. Families have been created by adopting in other states, artificial insemination, previous heterosexual relationships and family tragedies such as the death of a sibling.
2010 LEGISLATIVE SPONSOR UPDATE
HB 3 on Adoption Sponsored by Representative Mary Brandenburg - District 89Co-Sponsors areRepresentative Evan Jenne - District 100Representative Mark Pafford - District 88Representative Ari Porth - DistrictRepresentative Scott Randolph - District 36Representative Darryl Rouson - District 55Representative Ron Saunders - District 120 If you don't see your representative please give them a call and ask them to sponsor the Adoption bill. To find your representative's contact info, click here.
The Florida Senate bill sponsored by Senator Nan Rich is currently in drafting.
Monday, July 20, 2009
The Fam in Gatlinburg, TNLast Wednesday Barry and I packed up and drove to Dillard, GA to meet up with the family. My parents used their timeshare to rent a condo in Sky Valley, which sits right on the border of Georgia and North Carolina. It was the first time that all 11 of us were able to spend a vacation together (2 Grandparents, 3 daughters, 3 son-in-laws, and 3 grandchildren!) Its so beautiful up there. Unfortunately, we didn't get to see much on the drive up because we got in after dark.
On Friday, we drove north to Gatlinburg and visited Ober Gatlinburg. Its a quaint amusement park in Gatlinburg that was a lot of fun for both the kids and us big kids. The coolest part of the day, though, was as we were going up the ski lift to the Alpine Slide, a black bear walked right underneath us!!! It was unreal. I love wildlife. Seeing it in the zoo is one thing, but seeing a for-real black bear in the mountains was just unbelievable. I was only quick enough for one snapshot before he went into the woods. It was a-mazing.
We passed my dad on the way up!
Monday, July 13, 2009
True Story: Yesterday I wanted McDonalds French fries and a BK Whopper. I seriously considered driving through both places just to get it. I also wanted a Wendy’s Coffee Toffee Twisted Frosty, but was afraid of being disappointed when I got there if they didn’t have a decaf version. Then I thought for a substitute I could get a DQ Brownie Batter Blizzard, but it was too out of my way so that idea went quickly by the wayside. (but not before scanning a mental map of the Southside area to be sure I wasn’t missing another DQ somewhere.) I was able to resist though, and came home and made chicken pot pie that tasted DeLISH! :)
First stop was our Kung Fu instructor's. He's been a mentor of Barry's since Barry was about 16. He's like a father to us and it was the hardest not talking to him. He was so excited and promised me a shopping spree when my belly starts to sprout! He said 'no daughter of mine will be caught in ugly clothes. You're gonna look cute!" I can't wait for that day!! :)
Then we FINALLY told our roommate. We were certain she had figured it out already, with the father's day cards floating about the house and my "What to Expect" book on my night stand. But she claims she was oblivious and she had a great reaction.
That night, we went over to our friend Bozz's house with some friends for the UFC 100 fight. I kept giving Barry the 'eye' to say something. Finally right before 10, Barry says, "Before the fight starts, i want to say something. I'm going to be a Dad."
They were waiting for the punchline! If you known Barry before he met me, people would have put money on the bet that he would never get married and have kids. Enter Mandi, 2001. BAM! Did I mess his plans up or what? :) So everyone started looking at me to confirm, which I did by pulling out Cashew's picture, and then they were like, "Woah. Congratulations?"
I got a little googly at that moment when I realized it was the first time I heard him say "I'm going to be a Dad." I've been keeping my distance on the mushy stuff because I know he's scared shitless and I want him to come to terms with things on his own.
So, it's pretty much out there. It's killing me to not put the picture on facebook, but we are waiting to tell Barry's brother when he comes to visit on the 24th. Once he knows, it's on!
Friday, July 10, 2009
We went to see the doctor today. After 5 weeks of keeping it under wraps...
We are pregnant!
Here's the story.
By June 4th, I had been feeling physical PMS symptoms for over a week without Aunt Flo showing her ugly head. Also, because of my charting, I knew something was different with my body. My stickers went from the usual PCOS yellow to green. Normally, I would've been glad and thought that all that Metformin was finally kicking in, but i quit taking metformin because it never seemed to work for me. The only other time my chart started looking greener was when I had lost about 10 pounds, but those 10 pounds came back and didn't seem to want to leave anytime soon. Something inside me told me to just pee on a stick.
Barry was out in Orange Park hanging with the guys and my roommate was in her room or something. I grabbed a pee stick out of the pack and went into my bathroom (they were housed in the guest bath for some reason). I peed. Within seconds, there were 2 blue lines.
...WAIT. What does that mean?? I left the box in the other bathroom!! AHHHH!!! My heart is racing. I run to the other room, grab the box, and run back. Oh. My. God. 2 blue lines mean POSITIVE???
I called Barry and said that he needed to come home.
"I don't want to talk about it over the phone, just come home."
"Are you pregnant?!"
"Maybe. Just come home."
I spent the next who-knows-how-long sitting on the end of my bed. Looking at the floor. Looking at the mirror. Looking at my watch. I told myself I couldn't just sit in silence, so i turned on the TV. Seinfeld? Ok. Whatever.
That's when the tears came. Holy Shit. How are we going to afford this? OH, shit, I know this isn't what Barry wants right now. Fuck, is he going to blame me for not charting right? OMG. How are we going to afford this? I was just getting used to the idea of not needing to have a baby. Seriously? My sister wants to get pregnant so badly, this should be happening to her, not me. Shit.
That conversation went on over and over in my head until Barry came home. I guess I looked like a drowned rat, because when he walked into the bedroom, he says "That bad, huh?"
So we got ready for bed and just talked. Yes, I was overreacting when I thought he would blame me. He was very grounded the whole time. After a few hours, the conversation turned to names. By 1:30am, we had our initial decisions. (and no, I'm not telling yet.)
So, as the weeks go on, we're getting more and more used to the idea. I still don't know how we're going to afford this little cashew, but I think things have a way of working out.
This morning I had my first visit with my amazing doctor, Dr. Raspa. He did a physical exam and then we listened to the heartbeat. The HEART BEAT!! After that he snuck me into the sonogram room and gave me a quick snapshot of Cashew's big-ol' head, and I got to see him kicking away. Oh it was the most amazing feeling. I didn't cry, but I was grinning ear to ear. Barry said I was glowing. That made me happier.
Tomorrow we will be 10 weeks along. Here's what babycenter.com says about Cashew:
Though he's barely the size of a kumquat — a little over an inch or so long, crown to bottom — and weighs less than a quarter of an ounce, your baby has now completed the most critical portion of his development. This is the beginning of the so-called fetal period, a time when the tissues and organs in his body rapidly grow and mature.He's swallowing fluid and kicking up a storm. Vital organs — including his kidneys, intestines, brain, and liver (now making red blood cells in place of the disappearing yolk sac) — are in place and starting to function, though they'll continue to develop throughout your pregnancy.
If you could take a peek inside your womb, you'd spot minute details, like tiny nails forming on fingers and toes (no more webbing) and peach-fuzz hair beginning to grow on tender skin.
In other developments: Your baby's limbs can bend now. His hands are flexed at the wrist and meet over his heart, and his feet may be long enough to meet in front of his body. The outline of his spine is clearly visible through translucent skin, and spinal nerves are beginning to stretch out from his spinal cord. Your baby's forehead temporarily bulges with his developing brain and sits very high on his head, which measures half the length of his body. From crown to rump, he's about 1 1/4 inches long. In the coming weeks, your baby will again double in size — to nearly 3 inches.
(a baby at 10 weeks)
PS. We are still not announcing this on facebook, due to wanting to tell certain people in person. These people, luckily, don't read my blog, so you guys lucked out. :)
Thursday, July 9, 2009
This week has just dragged on, and tomorrow, after waiting many, many long weeks, I will(hopefully!) finally have some answers. If all goes well, a LONG post will be in ya'lls near future for your reading pleasure.
Thursday, July 2, 2009
Then, I decided to splurge and get a lip gloss, too. Oh, the fun to be had trying on lip gloss! Who knew? I ended up getting the first one I tried on, but not without MAKING SURE by trying at least 5 others. :) I REALLY wanted to get something by Kat Von D (LA Ink) because she had color names like "Stripper" and "Sexer". Plus I think she's just super hot.