Thursday, December 31, 2009

New Year's Eve - Farewell 2009

First, a brief - but powerfully moving poem.

Ode to Cookie Dough - aka Auld Lang Cooke Dough

Should all my cookie dough be forgot,
and never in my tummy?
Should all my cookie dough be forgot
oh no, it's much too yummy.

For the love of dough, my dear,
For cookie dough is so good,
We'll take a cup o' cookie dough yet
For we really should.

And here's a batch, my trusty friend,
Don't eat it all at one time;
We'll take a cup o' cookie dough yet,
part of the batch is mine.

Should all my cookie dough be forgot,
and never eaten again?
Should all my cookie dough be forgot
no, because then we couldn't be friends.

For the love of dough my dear,
For in cookie dough I believe,
We'll take a cup o' cookie dough yet
Because it's New Year's Eve

I'm sure everyone is just as impressed with my poetry writing skills as they are with my documentary film making skills.

2009 Year In Review (Brief)

I'd be lying if I said 2009 was an awesome year as a small business owner - the economy took a big dump on pretty much everyone. However, Buttin and I have so much to be thankful for in 2009 (For instance, I started a blog . . . which I know EVERYONE is thankful for, especially Buttin).

Working together has truly brought Buttin and I closer together. I love being able to tell him, "see you at work." As much as work gives me stress, he is able to relieve it. He is the best marriage and business partner and we've learned so much about each other during the past year (this is starting to sound very cheesy, so I'll stop now). We also moved the business this year - which I think if you asked the misfits - is the best thing that's happened all year!

In July, Buttin and I learned of a small little life change (maybe I've mentioned it a time or two), Lumpy. We can't wait to meet Lumpy in 2010. It must be said that anticipating Lumpy's arrival has really helped to keep everything else in perspective.

Buttin and I also took a couple of trips this year - Mexico and Chicago. It's great to have amazing friends, but even GREATER to go fun places with them (actually, it's pretty awesome just to lay on their couch too).

In 2009 I also started running more than I ever imagined possible, and completed my first marathon with my mom (and Lumpy) in November. I look forward to more running sometime in May 2010.

Farewell 2009 - hello 2010!

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Good News April Baby

**Warning - post contains very sad, but then HAPPY news**

When I got pregnant, I joined a couple of online groups for other April 2010 mothers.

The site/message board I'm usually on is Baby Center (where I get all the Fetus Friday updates). There are about 5,000 members of this board, but only about 750 - 1000 of us that participate daily.

The "Featured Post" on the Baby Center 2010 April board is the "Official Birth Announcements" - this has and will continue to be the featured post through April of next year. During the last few weeks, there have been babies born and none have survived. I pretty much cry every time I read a new announcement. (I don't always think it's a good idea for hormonal women to be on such a message board - shesh, you should read some of the fights these ladies get into.)

Here's the post from a mother who had her twins the day after Christmas:

Your Name/Screen name: leorira11
Baby's Name: (not decided yet)
Date of Birth: December 26, 2009
Original Due Date: May 1, 2010 (but expected earlier as they were twins)
Weeks Pregnant: 22
Baby's Weight: 423 g & 420 g
Baby's Height: unknown

Early on Friday morning, Baby A's water broke. There was nothing we could do to save her, or her perfectly healthy twin brother. I was induced into labor, and the twins were stillborn Saturday morning.

Words cannot describe the pain we are feeling at the moment.

Best wishes to everyone else on their pregnancy.

It makes me want to cry just reading it again (. . .there goes a tear). I don't think there are words that can describe the amount of love I already feel for Lumpy and the thought of having to go through what nine women (in our group) have gone through is terrifying beyond comprehension.

Well, yesterday when I opened the Baby Center message board there was one new post on the "Official Birth Announcement" thread. I dreaded opening it. Sweet, happy joy - a baby boy was born - only 1 lb and 6 oz, but he is strong and the doctors are very hopeful.

I never knew I could feel such happiness for a woman that I don't even know, but it was such a relief to see some good news for an April baby, born on December 28th.

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Another Documentary Film

This one stars Lumpy and the t-shirt on my belly.

Sadly, this one does not have narration - but fear not, there is still music.

Monday, December 28, 2009

Christmas Games

This year, my mother hosted our family Christmas celebration. (This is my cute mother, opening her favorite gift of deodorant from me).

We had to postpone Christmas by one day, but everything was wonderful. Our day was filled with many old traditions - as well as a couple of new things, that we may or may not do again.

One of the new things were three games that my mom decided that we should play:
  1. White Elephant/Naughty Santa - this is the game that lots of people play in their offices. Everyone brings a wrapped gift, numbers are drawn and people open presents or steal presents based upon their number. This game was fun, but everyone was pretty satisfied with the gift they opened, so there wasn't too much stealing. The winner for best white elephant gift giver is my mother-in-law. My mom got stuck with this wonderfully obnoxious frog nutcracker (that my MIL brought). I wish I had a picture of it. I got a pooping reindeer - yeah! (My mother purposefully bought this one for me.)
  2. Story Telling - for this game, we each told three stories about Christmases past. Two of the stories were supposed to be true and one was false. The rest of us then had to guess which story was false. This was kind of fun, except that my mother (who came up with the game and told us all about it WEEKS in advance) had the lamest stories. Honestly, one of her stories was - "When I was little, I liked to play the game Mouse Trap." She then quickly added, "At Christmas time." Really mom?? You liked to play the game Mouse Trap at Christmas time when you were little - that's a pretty lame-o memory. Poor Mommy. Did I mention that it was her idea to play the game?
  3. Mitten Unwrapping - this game was the most fun. There was one gift that was wrapped and wrapped and wrapped (like duck tape, band aids, surgical tape, paper, plastic, aluminium foil, etc.). Everyone would roll dice and the first person to roll doubles would have to put on these HUGE oven mitts and try to unwrap as much of the package as they could. While they were trying to do this, the dice would go around the room and everyone would roll and if a person got doubles, then they would take over trying to open the present with oven mitts. This went on for quite some time. The person to completely unwrap the gift during their turn (meaning, before someone else rolled doubles) got the gift. We didn't even know what was inside, but we all wanted to win it. I think at next year's office party - we're going to play this game and wrap a $100 bill and TELL EVERYONE that a $100 bill is inside. That'll make everyone CRAZY, but in a fun way (hopefully).
Here's a picture of Bubie trying to open the gift, while Buttin rolls the dice.

We all had such a good Christmas. Although, we couldn't help but mention that this time next year things are going to be so different.

I got some very nice gifts from Santa (I was a very good girl) including a new camera (for taking lots of pictures of Lumpy) and some new (slightly bigger sized) running/waddle clothes, a shark for our hardwood floors and a panini grill.

Lumpy even got some presents too. Some new clothes, including a little "What Happens At Grandma's Stays At Grandma's" onesie.

Just a quick side note, I cannot conclude my Christmas post without mentioning my mother-in-law's gift wrapping technique. Here are a couple of pictures, just to demonstrate how nicely (and when I say nicely, I'm being sarcastic) she wraps presents.

All presents get either 1) One piece of tissue paper

or 2) One little bow

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Thirty Second Movie Review - Sherlock Holmes

Sherlock Holmes

Entertaining little how'd-he-do-it kind of movie. I guess I didn't realize that Sherlock Holmes was so much like The Mentalist. If they make a sequel (which I'm sure they will) - I will happily go see it.

Weekly Workout Summary

Wow! Just when I thought I couldn't get any lazier - this week happened.

I managed just two Team Tri workouts and one waddle around my house. I am going to try to place some Wii Sports Resort (Christmas present from Buttin) today, so if I count that - it'll be a total of four workouts and of course, that's stretching it a little.

Starting tomorrow I'm going to get back on the wagon - the waddle wagon.

Saturday, December 26, 2009

Such A Great Christmas!

We had a fantastic Christmas today in Boerne. Will write more later, but now . . .I must take a nap.

Friday, December 25, 2009

Merry Christmas, Fetus Friday - Week 26 and a Change Of Plans

First of all, Merry Christmas!

I've been counting down the months since September or October and I can't believe how quickly time passes. For us, we're making today another Christmas Eve (more on this later), so I'll have even more Christmas spirit tomorrow!

OK, so Baby Center has this to say about Lumpy this week:

The network of nerves in your baby's ears is better developed and more sensitive than before. He may now be able to hear both your voice and your partner's as you chat with each other.

I love the idea of Lumpy being able to hear Buttin and I talk during the day. It's good if Lumpy gets used to our strange behavior now - less for Lumpy to get used to when he/she is older. Lumpy and I have this new game we like to play. I lay down and put the remote on my tummy. I then watch as Lumpy kicks the remote. This makes it very obvious when Lumpy is moving.

Baby Center has this to say about me:

If your lower back seems a little achy lately, you can thank both your growing uterus — which shifts your center of gravity, stretches out and weakens your abdominal muscles, and may be pressing on a nerve — as well as hormonal changes that loosen your joints and ligaments. Plus, the extra weight you're carrying means more work for your muscles and increased stress on your joints, which is why you may feel worse at the end of the day. Walking, standing, or sitting for long periods, as well as bending and lifting can all put a strain on your back.

Seriously? I really should read ahead a couple of weeks and get prepared. This sounds exactly like what's going on in my body (and has been going on for a couple of weeks) - especially the nerve part. I feel better knowing that this back ache is more normal than I thought.

Alright, now for the change in plans. The original plan was for my mother-in-law and grandmother-in-law (Nana) to head to Austin (from the Texas panhandle) yesterday. We were then going to go to Boerne this morning to spend Christmas with my mom, dad, grandmother (Bubie) and her fiance. Well - not everything works out as planned, least of all the weather.

Yesterday, a huge storm hit and dumped a huge amount of snow and ice right on my poor mother-in-law. She drove the two blocks to Nana's house and managed to get her car wedged in a huge snow drift - poor MIL.

So, because the weather did not cooperate - we are postponing Christmas by a day. This is exciting because it means another Christmas Eve and I love Christmas Eve. The plan now is for my MIL and GMIL to come into town today and we will make the trip to Boerne tomorrow morning and have our BIG Christmas celebration.

I can't wait!

Thursday, December 24, 2009

My Christmas Poem

Twas the Night Before Christmas -
My ode to gingerbread men, who I think do all the work and then Santa takes all the credit.

Twas the night before Christmas, when all through our house
Four pets were eating ham, including a cat named mouse(r).
The stockings weren't hung, because I didn't have time.
Santa will still come, because my mom has mine.

My in-laws were nestled all snug in the bed,
With Lumpy moving in my tummy, I just fed her (or him) bread.
Buttin in his boxers, and I in comfy clothes.
Had just settled down to watch our favorite tv shows.

When out on the lawn there arose such a clatter,
Penelope the cat was mad as a hatter.
I went to the door and asked, "Pene - you OK?"
Pene touched me inappropriately and went on his way.

The lights on our trees glistened like glass;
Made our yard mostly of weeds look a little less white trash.
When, what to my wondering eyes should appear,
But miniature gingerbread men drinking some beer.

With a group of eight, so drunk and small,
One spat at another and started a brawl.
More slowly than turtles they crawled though the lawn,
Then slurred out their words as they shouted their song!

"Now Vodka! now, Wine! now, Lager and Gin!
We're no rookie effort, we deserved to Win!
I can stand up, but eventually I'll fall!
Now drink up! Drink up! Drink it up all!"

As I started to walk back in the house to pee,
Their leader approached smiling at me .
Then up to my front door they stumbled two by two,
With the Honda full of presents, one was sniffing some glue.

And then, in an instant, I heard in the street,
The prancing and dancing of all of their feet.
As I reached for my bladder, and was turning around,
Through the front door they came with a bound.

They were dressed all disheveled, one was missing his shoe,
And their clothes were all tarnished and nothing looked new.
A bundle of presents they had flung on their backs,
And they looked like some hobos, opening their packs.

Their eyes looked so red! One threw up in my chair!
Their noses were rosy, they had marzipan hair!
All this time I thought Santa, brought me my toys.
But really it is drunk gingerbread girls and boys.

The stump of bottle one held in his teeth,
And another smoked cigars as she hung up the wreath.
One looked like he'd just been punched by his brother,
But they all laughed and seemed to enjoy each other!

They looked odd bringing presents, not like Santa at all.
But they smelled of almonds and were cute when they'd fall!
A quick whistle of the lips and one bump on the head,
Let me know soon, I had nothing to dread.

They spoke few words, and went straight to their jobs,
And filled all the stockings, while smelling like slobs .
Then using one another to prop themselves up,
Headed out my front door with drinks in their cup!

They meandered to the Honda dragging a Radio Flyer,
And away they all drove, with a designated driver.
But I heard them exclaim, even though they seemed grumpy,
"Merry Christmas and next year we'll bring presents for Lumpy!"

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

A Little Hiatus . . . Maybe

The past few days (wait . . the last few weeks) have just been a blur of activity.

I think all the activity, stress and weight gain (not sure how generous, I'm afraid to look) are starting to effect (or is it affect . . . I never know?) my body - mostly, my back.

It started a week or so ago in Florida - a dull, but sometimes stabbing pain in my upper right hip/lower back. The first night I had it - I could barely move. It got better, but creeps back in about every other day. Last night it was pretty bad. I think it was the wearing of jeans (usually I wear stretchy pants . . . yup I'm one of those stylish pregnant ladies) and cute heeled flip-flops from yesterday. I also went shopping after work and that was quite a bit of walking around (on a side note, I felt really bad for Macy's - their computer systems were completely down and they couldn't ring anyone up).

Well, when I woke up this morning - it was better, but I could still feel it. This meant that although I wanted to do a little run, I had to do a little walk (um . . waddle) instead. I'm thinking I may have to take my brief hiatus from running earlier than planned (I was hoping to get to about 30 - 32 weeks). Looks like I'll be on the elliptical or in the pool from now on - unless my back starts to feel better. I will miss you, running - but will return sometime in mid-May (hopefully).

On a slightly related note, I've never been much of a back sleeper, BUT now that I've been told by my doctor that I'm not allowed to lay on my back (he said some scary stuff like, "cut off blood flow to me and the baby") - that's the ONLY position that feels comfortable!! Go figure.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

No Christmas Stress

It looks like Molly is trying to tell me something in this picture. I think she's really saying, "get this stupid thing off my head . . . now.", but I'm going to pretend like she's saying, "don't be stressed at Christmastime, mommy."

There are just so many things left on my "to-do" list. For those women who already have children - I have no idea how you do it. I'm not even hosting Christmas at my house this year, but here's a list of all the things I have to accomplish in the next 48 hours:

  • Try to find Buttin a good Christmas gift (I'm stressing because I haven't been able to find that one perfect gift & I usually- I'm so good at it - I think).
  • Buy gift cards and some other various gifts for the few people still on my shopping list.
  • Go to the grocery store to buy stuff for the two work parties we have tomorrow (installer Christmas breakfast and our Holiday party).
  • Make food for the work holiday parties, set up parties, clean up after parties, etc. . .
  • Get house ready for dear MIL and GMIL (even though they're the easiest house guests EVER).
  • Wrap copious amount of gifts.
  • Buy a few more stocking stuffers; and
  • Various work tasks that must be done before I leave on Thursday (hopefully early).
I'm also trying to just enjoy our last Christmas before Lumpy arrives, but that's so much easier said than done. Next Christmas, I'll probably look back on Christmas 2009 and think - wow, I had it SO easy.

Monday, December 21, 2009

Cookie Day!

Today was Christmas Cookie Day with my mom and Bubie (or as one of our friends Ollie likes to call her, Boobie).

This is typically an annual day-long baking event where my mom, Bubie and I make a huge mess. We also make more cookies than our family could possibly eat in six months.

As recently as a few years ago we used to make all the cookie dough from scratch, but now we use a combination of store and school fundraiser bought dough. Here is me modeling with the cookie dough:

The only type of cookie where store bought cookie dough is not acceptable is SUPER DOPER. So, my mom and Bubie made that dough yesterday.

We make the following kinds of cookies - sugar, gingerbread, peanut butter blossoms, super dopers (chocolatey with nuts) and chocolate chip. We also made two kinds of fudge (chocolate and peanut butter) and a batch of blueberry kolaches.

Here's evidence of all our work:

Bubie's primary job this year was decorating (gingerbread and sugar cookies) - she needs a lot of supervision (she beheads the gingermen just so that she can eat them), but she's a hard worker.

My mom's primary job was rolling out the dough. As you can see, she too need supervision and had to be helped with the flour.

My primary job was quality assurance. I took my job very seriously and sampled all the cookie dough as well as the finished cookie products. We did an excellent job with the exception of a couple of peanut butter blossoms, someone (ahem . . . mom) left little pieces of the Hershey Kiss foil wrapper in the candy dish - so some of the cookies are flecked with foil.

This minor mishap aside, we had a very successful cookie making day. Can't wait till next year when Lumpy can help and by help I mean take a nap while I eat cookie dough.

Sunday, December 20, 2009

My New Toy

My friends Liz & Jonathan got me this great little camcorder for Christmas. I have a feeling they aren't going to be too happy when I start making awesome videos of them. Buttin already thinks I've lost my mind.

I now present my first documentary film - Scratch Eats Ham.

Thirty Second Movie Review - Up In The Air

Up In The Air

Awesome, awesome movie! Not one false note. Of course, I could watch George Clooney watch paint dry. This movie had everything - laughter, sadness, family, friends - pretty much everything except for a cute puppy.

Weekly Workout Summary

This post will be very short.

I worked out twice this week - once with my Team Tri group and one run. In my defense, I spent most of the week in Florida and just couldn't manage a run.

I did my one run yesterday morning - 4 miles. I think I pushed myself just a little too hard. I'm still feeling some lower back and pelvic region discomfort. Maybe I won't go so far or so fast next time.

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Thirty Second Movie Review - Bad Lieutenant

Bad Lieutenant Port of Call: New Orleans

This was the most ridiculous, over the top movie I've seen in a long time. Strangely enough, I was also kind of bored. Watching Nicolas Cage is like watching a drunk, maniacal hobo try to behave in church. The movie wasn't all bad - I did have to go to the bathroom twice and that was a welcome relief.

Friday, December 18, 2009

Thirty Second Movie Review - Avatar


I really wanted to love, love this movie. I just really like and respect this movie. The special effects were truly amazing (and special), but the story was a little (OK more than a little) cheesy. If the story would have been Lord of the Rings with blue cat people - I would have LOVED this movie. Take note James Cameron.

Fetus Friday - Week 25

Baby Center has this to say about Lumpy:

She's beginning to exchange her long, lean look for some baby fat. As she does, her wrinkled skin will begin to smooth out and she'll start to look more and more like a newborn.

This is good. I'm hopeful that during our next ultrasound (Jan 4th) we'll get some even better pictures of Lumpy as his/her skin starts to look more like a little baby and less like a little tadpole.

Baby Center has this to say about me:

Your baby's not the only one with more hair — your locks may look more full and lustrous than ever. It's not that you're growing more hair, but thanks to hormonal changes, the hair that you'd normally shed is sticking around longer than usual.

Does chin hair count? This seems to be the only place that I'm really noticing more hair - lucky me!

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

All Is Well In Florida

All is well here in Florida.

This evening I'm going to the airport to pick up my little brother and his wife (it sounds weird to say that - he doesn't seem old enough to have a wife - I think he's still about 11).

I'm missing my husband and our little fur babies, but I'll be home tomorrow and will be able to blog more later in the week.

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Weekly Workout Summary

OK - so this week wasn't a great week in the workout department.

I managed to run a little over 10 miles TOTAL - what a difference a month makes. I also did a couple of Team Tri workouts, but I wish I could have done a little more.

This next week isn't going to be too great either (for working out). I'm going out of town Monday - Wednesday, so I'm not sure how motivated I'll be to run or workout, but I'll bring my clothes - just in case.

Also, since I'll be out of town - I'm not sure how many posts I'll get up early in the week, but I promise to try.

Saturday, December 12, 2009

The Gingerbread Incident of 2009

Tonight I was witness to what can now only be described as, "The Gingerbread Incident".

To tell the story of tonight, I must first go back in time . . .

When my fabulous friend Liz was just a school girl, she loved writing poems. Her favorite type of poem to write was the limerick. She was extremely gifted poet, so she decided to enter a limerick writing contest. Her entry was nothing short of genius. Sadly, Liz did not win the contest and to make things worse, when the judge gave her a consolation pat on the head, he said, "It was a good limerick, for your first time." This angered Liz and she vowed from that day forward that she would never lose anything again - even if it meant cheating.

Fast forward to a few weeks ago. Liz sent me an evite to a Gingerbread House Making Party one of her friends was hosting. As it happens, I knew Buttin would be out of town - but I love gingerbread house making (especially the candy eating part), so I agreed to be a part of her team. Liz and her husband, Jonathan, planned a practice run for a couple weeks ago. I wasn't able to attend the practice, but I did see the final product and the team (Jonathan, Liz and our other friends Aaron and Sarah) had done an excellent job and had a truly AWESOME theme - DRUNK IRISH CHRISTMAS. This theme was loosely based on Liz's family Christmases.

I have NEVER seen anyone prepare for anything like Jonathan and Liz prepared for the contest tonight (hell, I don't think I prepared as much for my own wedding). We had team t-shirts, there was a typed out "game plan", a sketch, a protractor (yup, you remember those from the fifth grade), no less than five dozen types of candy, marzipan people and special boxes for organizing all our materials. Liz and Jonathan were not messing around - they were in it to win it.

Our team arrived feeling confident (I even wore glitter eyeshadow and lipstick for the occasion).

We had one hour to complete our Drunk Irish Christmas (notice the t-shirts - pretty cool, huh?) Gingerbread House. The timer began and our team set to work.

Look at this expert construction - this technique should be studied by aritechture students (or at the very least - first graders in art class).

As you can see, even the protractor is out (and so is the sketch)!

The hour flew by, but we (and by we, I mean the four people who actually practiced) had planned everything out to the final drunken detail. We finished and even had time to clean up.

Here is the masterpiece.

I feel it only prudent to point out some of the fine details:
  • Life-like marzipan people - complete with outfits, hair and shoes (notice how the guy in the front yard has lost his shoe - I think it came off during the car accident).
  • Electrical wire (i.e. licorice) coming off the chimney that some poor drunk soul tried to climb.
  • A portico (yes, a freaking portico!).
  • A classy woman, barfing over the fence.
  • Red gum for brick siding.
  • A marvelous gumdrop Christmas tree and two coordinating shrubs (my favorite person is the one sitting next to the bush on the left).
  • Beer bottles a plenty; and one of the best parts . . .
The backyard!

Notice the pool with the drunk guy passed out in it? Well one of my jobs (For the safety of others, I was only allowed a couple) was to mush up the corn for his barf. It's kind of difficult to see it - but I think it makes the entire piece.

Soon the judging began. I didn't take pictures of the other three houses in the competition but one was a Gingerbread Church, one was a Gingerbread Post Office and one was just a regular, conservative Gingerbread House.

A couple words about the judging - it sucked. There was one judge - the hostess of the party (who I don't know very well, but I'm sure is a very sweet, nice person). She didn't carry a clipboard or look very official (I don't think she even wrote anything down).

Within a few minutes, she announced the winner - the boring conservative Gingerbread House. It was perfectly lovely, but there was little creativity and no theme that I could discern. The kicker is that it was the hostess' brother and sister-in-law's gingerbread house that won! Our judge/hostess then felt the need to justify her choice by saying that from a proportional standpoint - their house was the best. She said that the people could actually fit through the doors. I guess she didn't deduct points for the animal cracker elephants in the front yard that were the same size as the people and could also fit through the door - that's so not like real life. At least no elephants I KNOW can fit through front doors.

As soon as Liz found out that we had not won, she clapped her hands together and said, "OK, let's pack up and go." This is a picture I took of Liz and Jonathan after we received the news that our people were TOO big to fit through the door (I tried telling the judge that I've been to lots of house where I had to crawl through the front door, but she wasn't going for it).

The look on her face is just priceless. To add insult to injury the judge/hostess told Liz, "This house is really great for a rookie effort." If Liz could have spit fire, I think the judge would have been a toasted little hostess.

We promptly packed up our things (including our house) and headed for the door, but not before I made everyone get their fudge party favor (I love fudge and so does Lumpy) and give it to me.

Pretty much the entire way home (which was a good 40 minutes - we practically drove to San Antonio) we complained about our loss and the unfair judging. Soon, it really started to get to Liz and she started rocking back and forth in her seat saying, "Not again, this is the limerick contest all over again."

Jonathan and I got her home as soon as possible . When she got home she was somehow able to make us dinner (yummy Swedish meatballs), but she kept repeating, "I'm a winner, not a loser." over and over.

After dinner - Jonathan and I encouraged Liz to do something she felt really good at, so she wrote this limerick:

There once was midget named Stephanie
She had a major epiphany
She said with a smile
It had been a long while
Since she had been tossed into the symphony.

I'm not sure this is her best work, but it got her out of the "I'm a winner." trance.

Here's one last picture of the three girls next to our house.

For Liz's sake, we shall never speak of this incident again.

Friday, December 11, 2009

Fetus Friday - Week 24

All is going very well with Lumpy this week. I can now consistently feel Lumpy moving whenever I sit still and Buttin can usually feel Lumpy move at night. Sometimes, when Lumpy is sleeping (certainly, a child of mine would be taking lots of naps) Buttin likes to poke my tummy and say "wake-up, play with me." I have a feeling Lumpy will be getting his/her sweet, sweet revenge very soon.

Baby Center has this to say about Lumpy:

Your baby's growing steadily, having gained about 4 ounces since last week. That puts him at just over a pound. Since he's almost a foot long; he cuts a pretty lean figure at this point, but his body is filling out proportionally and he'll soon start to plump up.

I'm going to do my best to help Lumpy plump up during the holidays!

Baby Center doesn't really have anything interesting to say about me during this week - only to warn me that during my next doctor's appointment, I'll probably have a blood glucose test. Just the short version. Sounds like loads of fun.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Our Armadillo Racing, Trapeze Jumping, Snake Charming Grand New Location Opening Sale

I know I've mentioned my fabulous friend Liz a time or two on this blog. I often spend Wednesday evenings at her house and last night was no exception - we ate KFC (it's probably the classiest selection on the regular Liz/Steph menu).

To say my friend Liz is smart is like saying I mildly enjoy Cadbury Creme Eggs. She got her bachelors degree and MBA from the University of Chicago, helped start a non-profit in Chicago, has her own successful business and I'm quite sure she knows people who have won prizes that have "Nobel" in the title. (Whereas I know people who have won participation certificates from eating contests.) So, I decided to ask my highly intelligent friend an important marketing question.

As I've also mentioned a time or two on this blog - our business has moved. We are very excited and are planning a BIG SALE in February. I asked Liz (very smart lady . . . I think) what we should call the sale. We can't really advertise "Grand Opening" because we've been around for several years and I don't want to make it sound like we just opened and have no experience. I was thinking she would come up with a more clever way of saying "New Location Sale" or "Grand Re-Opening" or something similar.

I'm not kidding when I say that her first suggestion was, "I think you need to have armadillo races," followed by, "how about a snake charmer or a charity carnival with cotton candy and a trapeze?" Her next suggestions involved strippers, a fajita buffet, a trampoline, a keg, a DJ, pony and/or longhorn rides (she's confident we could get Bevo - since football season will be over), some kind of activity involving a lasso and butter, funnel cakes (I'm with her on this one), a knife juggler, a giraffe and (for the classy people) champagne. I'm quite sure there were even more "suggestions", but my brain is so overloaded that I forget.

I know this sounds like she was being funny, but I swear she's serious about 82% of these things. When I told her that I was hoping she could just give me a brief two word phrase that I could use in front of the word "sale", she said I was stifling her creativity and keeping her in a boring little box. So, not wanting to to limit my fabulous friend Liz I had a very talented artist come up with this ad for our our BIG SALE.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Quick Hurry Post

OK - I know it's late - it's been a day. Here are a few updates:
  • Short, cold 3 mile run this morning. I didn't sleep well last night, so I slept in and got a late start.
  • I HATE Quickbooks, but the tech support staff is very helpful. Buttin was on the phone with them for about four hours today.
  • My office is VERY slowly coming together - getting organized AND doing work at the same time keeps me very busy.
  • Going to eat KFC with Liz tonight - perfect!

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Comfortably Back In Flip Flops

Our sales meeting went very well. Although, I ended up not taking off my jacket - so it was difficult to pimp out my kid.

Here I am (in my new, but messy office) with Lumpy:

The flowers were an anniversary present from Buttin.

Barbie & Patty decided to pose for a picture with their sympathy bumps:

They don't really have bumps, but I think they managed to hurt their backs pretending.

Monday, December 7, 2009

And Breathe . . .

Phew . . . I think tomorrow morning, we will have the interweb again. This is all thanks to our friend, Mick, and pretty much no thanks to AT&T. I feel so out of the loop without email and google.

Tomorrow morning we (me, Buttin & Tubby-Tub) have a pretty big sales presentation. It's simple, but I've included some cheesiness. Buttin wants me to wear something that shows off the tummy - we're not above using our unborn child as a way to break the ice.

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Another Brief Warning

We accomplished A TON during our move last week, but so far - no internet at the new building.

I usually write my blog posts at work, so this may mean fewer posts or that I write them at night. So moms, please don't worry.

Weekly Workout Summary

This week was not a great running week. However, I was a little more tired than usual because of all the moving activity and the weather was really, really cold (although I promise to NEVER complain about cold weather while running).

I had a great run on Wednesday - about 4 chilly miles at the world record pace of 10:54/mile, well it was pretty fast for me considering I haven't been that fast, for that many miles,f or months. Yesterday's run was a very short 3 miles - it was 25 degrees and my fingers never got warm. I also had to run around downed power lines (OK, there was only one - but it sounds more dramatic in the plural).

I only ran 10 miles total this week, but I hope to be back closer to 15 this coming week. I also did a couple Team Tri workouts - one that involved a StairMaster and weights - at the same time! My friend Jen would not have enjoyed that workout.

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Twilight Bashing

First of all (and totally off topic) we got a little snow yesterday. Houston got a ton more, but I'm thankful we didn't get that much - it would have made moving even worse. Speaking of moving, we are ALMOST done and I should have some pictures next week.

OK - now to Twilight.

I don't really understand the appeal of Twilight and have never had a desire to read the books or see the movies. They give the impression of silly, teenage angst and romance books that unfulfilled housewives might also enjoy.

My fabulous friend Liz got suckered into reading the first book (and maybe the second and third too) and she confirmed my every suspicion - juvenile writing with a teenage-friendly, "I'm in love with a vampire 5 minutes after meeting him." kind of a plot. I can totally understand the appeal for a 13 year old - but it's the appeal to the women my age (and older) that I just don't understand.

I've wanted to really bash Twilight. Being a HUGE Harry Potter fan (seriously huge, I think Lumpy's room might have a HP theme) - I've always found it very interesting that religious groups wanted to burn Harry Potter books (even though most of them have never read the books), but have now really embraced a vampire-teenage-romance book. Seems a little odd to me.

Well - not wanting to be hypocritical - I thought I should read Twilight before rendering a final opinion. I began reading it (or having it read to me via my ipod) this morning. I spent only 30 minutes listening because I was just freezing cold and couldn't warm up during my run. I plan to listen to Twilight for the next couple of weeks and then write my full opinion.

I expect to hate it and I know I'm going into it with a semi-closed mind, but I'm going to try - I really am.

Friday, December 4, 2009

Fetus Friday - Week 23

We've had a lot of Lumpy updates this week - what with all the doctor visits and posing for pictures.

Baby Center says this about Lumpy's development:

Turn on the radio and sway to the music. With her sense of movement well developed by now, your baby can feel you dance.

I'd better get Lumpy used to my embarrassing dancing now. My mom enjoys dancing around the house (and in her car and other more public places - I used to tell her, "Mom, our car does not have tinted windows.") and I apparently got my dancing skill from her. Poor Lumpy - he/she is in store for a lifetime of embarrassing parent moments.

Baby Center has this to say about me:
You may notice that your ankles and feet start to swell a bit in the coming weeks or months, especially at the end of the day or during the heat of summer.

So far, no sign of cankles - but it's still early. They say that exercise and drinking plenty of fluids helps with water retention - and I'm doing both those things.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Lumpy Update - In Bullet Point Form

Today we had two doctor's appointments - one with Dr. Elephant (remember, the one who said I had a "generous" weight gain last time) and one with the ultrasound Dr., let's call her Dr. Sweet (she's very nice).

Here are the highlights:
  • I've gained 3 lbs since my last appointment (Oct. 30th). I find it difficult to believe that I gained twice as much weight during the prior 5 week period (when I was running over 25 miles per week) than I have during the last 5 weeks (while only running about 12 miles a week for the last couple of weeks and having Thanksgiving - seriously, I ate half a Tootie Pie by myself). Even more bizarre, when I went to Dr. Sweet's office - I weighed the EXACT same as I did two weeks ago (Nov. 18th).
  • Dr. Elephant said that my weight gain and blood pressure both looked very good (whoppee. . . no generous weight gain this time!!).
  • Dr. Elephant said that we're now at the point where if Lumpy was born there would be a chance for survival and that the chance for survival increases DAILY. However, we plan to let Lumpy cook till Spring.
  • Dr. Elephant said I should no longer be sleeping on my back.
  • The point of this follow up ultrasound was to make sure all of Lumpy's vertebrae were fused (Lumpy wasn't in a cooperating position last time). Well, Lumpy's spine looks great!
  • Lumpy was curled up in a little cannon ball position, with his/her legs tucked under its butt, so Lumpy was playing with his/her hands this time (last time it was the feet).
  • Lumpy is now 1 lb! Lumpy has gained 4 oz in 2 weeks! However, even with this "generous" weight gain, Lumpy is still on the low-end for weight. I take this to mean only one thing - Lumpy wants more fried cheese! (So I gave Lumpy exactly what he/she wanted by going to Sonic after my appointment.)
  • Because Lumpy is on the lower-end for weight (by the way, I'm perfectly fine if Lumpy is a smaller baby - my mother-in-law told me that my husband was a 10 lb baby and I'm not really wanting to push out a 10 lb baby!) we're going back for another ultrasound on January 4th. I told her this was perfectly fine as I'm sure the grandmas would not tire of looking at pictures.
So, here are a couple of pictures:

This one is a 3D picture where Lumpy looks less like frog than he/she did 2 weeks ago. You can kind of see the arm up around the head. The thing that looks like a growth coming out of Lumpy's head is actually his/her hand.

Here's a cute little profile picture of Lumpy (the profile pictures are my favorite). You can see how Lumpy's legs are tucked under his/her butt.

We have another appointment with Dr. Elephant and Dr. Sweet on Monday, January 4th. I'm not sure my weight gain will be so small next time considering cookie baking with Bubie, Christmas parties and New Year's!

Happy Anniversary Buttin

On their anniversary, people always say things like - they married their best friend, soul mate, the love of their life . . . and other cheesy stuff written in greeting cards. These little words just don't describe Buttin or our relationship, so I'll tell a very short story to sum up the amazingness that is the man I married three years ago today.

Yesterday morning I was very excited to go to Walgreens to pick up our Holiday photo card (see outtakes here). When I got there, the pictures were not ready. Buttin usually gets to work about 30 minutes after me, so I called him when I got to work and asked him if you had time to swing by Walgreens before he came into work - the cards should be ready by 9:00 AM. Well, Buttin had a very busy morning planned (maybe you've heard, we're moving) and had a meeting at 9:00 AM. He said he would swing by later on in the morning and pick up the cards for me. At 9:05, Buttin comes through the door holding the cards. I say, "I thought you had to be somewhere at 9:00". Buttin says, "I do, but I knew how much joy these would bring you."

I know, it's simple, but Buttin does things like this for me every single day. I can only hope that I do the same for him.

Here are a couple pictures from three years ago!

Happy Anniversary Buttin! LYMITY!

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Christmas Card Outtakes - Featuring Mouser & Scratch

Every year, about this time - I torture the animals by taking their picture with little Christmas props.

I'm actually very pleased with this year's results, but here are some outtakes - just for laughs.

If I look away, will you please stop this?
Oh no, I remember this part from last year.
I'm so outta here.
Do these antlers look like wings? Because, I'm an angel.