Thursday, August 7, 2008

My Ultrasound

I had my detailed ultrasound last Friday, on August 1, after trying for a few weeks to bump it up in the schedule. My original appointment was for August 7, but I'd be pushing 23 weeks. I managed to get it rescheduled, so now I was just approaching 22 weeks. Not much difference, but I wanted to see how the baby was doing.

My appointment was at 8:30 in the morning. Good, only because it's out of the way, and I have the rest of the day to do other things (like get a massage!), but bad, because that meant my day had to start by 6am so that I can get 2 big glasses of water in me by 6:30 (you need a full bladder for a proper ultrasound, and you can't go to the bathroom after downing the water!). Unfortunately, I couldn't sleep past 4:45 am, so my day started way earlier than I expected.

The family and I got to our appointment early. I went in first, which the hubby and the kid were in the waiting room. I must have been in there for 20 minutes or so until it was ok for them to come in and view the baby.

She shows us the obvious traits: head, arms, nose, neck. Very quick, too quick, if you ask me. Then I was finally asked to completely empty my bladder in the washroom while she went off doing what she needed to do. It took her FOREVER to report back to us in the room. I was getting anxious. Did she find something abnormal? Is she having further consultations with the doctors? Is she trying to figure out how to break something to us?

So, FINALLY, so comes back into the room after 10 minutes of waiting for her. She starts to close the door behind her while she asks, Did you have your Triple Screen? Ohmygod, why is she asking?!? Uh, yeah, it came back negative, I reply. Hold on, she says flustered, and leaves the room abruptly, closing the door behind her.


What? my husband asks. I explain to him that she wouldn't have rushed out of the room like that if she seemed alarmed at me having a negative Triple Screen. That means she found something abnormal that the Triple Screen test didn't pick up (for all those who don't know, the Triple Screen, aka Quad Screen, aka Maternal Serum Screen, is a blood test that screens for several select abnormalities like Trisomy 21, 18,13, spina bifida, Turners. It's not fool-proof, with many false positives, but also some false negatives). Calm down, there must be a rational explanation.

So, again, she FINALLY breezes back in and exclaims, ok, everything's fine! Uh, really? I thought. What was that earlier then? Then she asks, did your son have big feet? Uh, I came here for my previous ultrasound, and they never said anything, so I don't think so. Oh, ok...she says that she had taken a long time because I was trying to get measurements of the baby's feet. They are large....but not that they're going to be GIANT or anything (at this point, she chuckles) but everything else is fine.

Big feet. Ok, I'm trying to quickly recall from my experience at work, is big feet a marker for anything abnormal? I asked to confirm that other than big feet, there's nothing else wrong. She said everything else was fine.

She then quickly proceeded to hand out two profile pictures of the baby and then one on just the foot, sole facting the camera. It is rather big, but there's no other body part in the picture to relate it to.

Hmm. I left the clinic feeling neither happy or sad. Confused I think is more accurate.

Well, I can't be too worried right now. I'll have my next prenatal appointment in 3 weeks.

Monday, July 28, 2008

House Painting

I may have mentioned earlier that I wanted to paint the outside of my house. Not me, per se, but have it done by someone else. Being in my current condition, I can't be scaling up and down ladders, so we've (ok, I've) been interviewing potential contractors for the job.

I compared 3 companies: a student-run company, a professional company, and a Joe Blow do-it-yourselfer contractor. I got the best feeling from the contractor, and the best price, and since he got recommended by a coworker (and technically, about 15 of her neighbours too), I think I'll be giving him the job.

My problem now is what to choose for colours. I've got a peachy-pink house, with some heritage detailing (octagon window, wood panelled gable) and would like to have a richer palette to reflect this.

I'll post photos once I decide and when it's finished.

Friday, July 25, 2008


I went in for my prenatal massage at Soma Studio, a place specializing in pregnancy massage.

Having never been there before, it's in a strange, artsy building, like a condo development, but everything's made up of metal. The open-air stairwells, outside walls and doors were all metallic. Neat port-holes in elevator. All the bronze and the neutrals gave me an eerie feeling like I was on the set of Waterworld. Alas, no sign of Kevin Costner around.

The suite's entrance was pretty indescript. Save for the small signage on the door, I would've sworn I had the wrong place, and would end up knocking on the residential door of someone named Uma, Rainbow or Cosmo.

I met my RMT (Registered Massage Therapist), Ateshia, at the desk: tall, blond, leggy, young, beautiful, of course all of the above, a sharp contrast to my older, short, fat, dark-haired self.

She showed me to my room. In for a 1-hour massage, I quickly settled myself face down on the table after she left the room briefly, anxious to see if my sore back could be relieved. Bolsters were set up for my chest and hips, leaving a space between to accomodate my swollen belly.

The room was small, perhaps 7x10, with a tiny, pretty concrete patio beyond the floor-to-ceiling glass sliding door, adorned with a small fountain, climbing ivys and other greenery and a few token zen Buddhist items. The Granville St bridge traffic was audible, but not overbearing. New age music emanated from a small stereo behind me.

Despite her appearance (looks CAN be deceiving), Ateshia is stronger than she looks. I consider myself to have a high pain tolerance but almost gave in a few times under her brute strength. I'll surely bruise later.

She worked on my calves and hips, and then on my back, shoulders and neck. I'm sure she could tell I tensed up a few times, my body shocked from her amazonian strength.

When the massage was complete, energized isn't the word I'd use. Peaceful? Maybe. Sore? Definitely. Calm? Yes, a much needed sense of warmth.

I made another appointment with her the following week, figuring a massage is ALWAYS a good idea, pregnant or not, if you can get it. My Extended Health covers most of it, so as I see it, it would be a crime NOT to take advantage of the System.

Being pregnant offers a chance to splurge and spoil myself. I could get used to this!

Sunday, July 20, 2008

When a Mother Just Wants To Disappear....

I went grocery shopping with my toddler the other day. I haven't gone for a good, solid trip in weeks. I'd pick up something simple for dinner one day, or eat out another day, but it's been a while since I actually ran up a huge grocery bill. Tonight's the night!

So, with my husband being at a softball practice, it was me and kid out to get groceries.

Tell me, moms out there, why is it that when you have your kid(s) with you, you always end up getting the f#!$ed up shopping cart!?! You know, the one where the one wheel rotates furiously fast, the cart needs every ounce of strength to push to overcome the defunct wheel, and the most irritating foghorn of a screech eminating from the wheels as you try and maneuver QUIETLY down the aisles? And to top it all off, you trying to discipline your kid OVER the screeching?

I swear everyone knew we were behind them!I have become one of them! Them, you ask? Yes, those parents you see in the stores trying to balance something as routine as grocery shopping with a kid in tow. Sound easy? HA, you fool!

I spent two whole hours in the grocery store, to buy only $150 worth of groceries. That's 80 cents being spent every minute I was in there. So? That's like picking up a small can of soup EVERY MINUTE! Pick up a can, wait 60 seconds, ooo, another can of soup! Pick it up, walk for 60 seconds, wow, another can of soup! 120 cans of soup later is when I left the store.

Of course I didn't just buy soup. But you get my drift. No one buys soup that way, and no one should spend 2 hours grocery shopping. Hell, I've never even spent that much time in Costco, and you can eat forever in there and watch a whole movie!

So I crashed that night, exhausted, in tears, wondering why I try to do everything myself.

Because I'm a Mom and that's what we do.

Friday, July 18, 2008

Pregnancy So Far

I'll be 19 weeks tomorrow!

People have asked me how I'm doing with the pregnancy. I tell people I feel fat. More recently, now, I do feel more pregnant but every bit as fat. I'm definitely showing now, no denying it. I just hope I don't gain too much weight in the long run.

Yes, I know I'm supposed to gain weight, and "Eat For Two". But, really, folks, I'm only supposed to eat an extra 300 calories a day. What's that equivalent to? I found these yummy looking recipes that I think I"ll have to try.

My tummy fat has created a belly that now feels huge. I guess I'll have to expect to get bigger, and get used to it. Being pregnant the second time around is so different!

The first time around, you're excited about everything changing, not knowing what to expect, the fear, the joy, etc. The next time around, you just want to get it over with, and start rearing this kid NOW! Family dynamics change too, when adding an extra kid. I'd rather just start dealing with all that and not the incessant waddling that comes with being pregnant, and feeling like you've got indigestion all day, when you really don't because you haven't eaten and it's actually time to eat again.

I may not update everyone about my pregnancy here all the time, but you can go to my dedicated Babies Online website dedicated to Baby #2 here. Email me for the password.

On the exercise front, I've managed to plug into, twice, my Leisa Hart's Pregnancy Workout, and salsa-danced my way to a healthier me. I'm not there yet, ha, but I'm trying. I've gone for one 2-km walk with the family, but that probably won't happen again, at least not with them, since the last 1/4 km, my husband practically carried my 3-year-old home because he was tired walking. (who can blame him?). Maybe I'll find time to go by myself. I"m trying to remain optimistic!

Sleeping at night is a drag sometimes; sleeping on my left side ALL THE TIME is starting to take its toll. I wake up all crampy and tight. Sometimes in the morning I roll over to my right side and sigh a great relief of comfort...but only for a little while I do the same when I succumb to lying on my back for a bit. AHHH! Something about the baby having poor circulation while on my back or right side.....that just sucks! Part of the reason why I wake up in the middle of the night (like right now!) and find it difficult to go back to sleep. I got my handy ergonomic pillow between my knees to take off the minor back pain!

I can't think right now...I need a midnight snack. Ok, it's more like 2 am. Darn, I ate all my English Cream crackers, and I've got no more cream cheese. Bread? I think we're out. I think I have some watermelon that's still good. Maybe some cheese? The havarti hasn't molded, but haven't checked out the cheddar recently.

I really need to go grocery shopping!

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Drunk Husbands...part 2

Here we go again.

Talking to a drunk husband is worse than talking to a 3-year-old. Three-year-olds respond to the best of their ability, no matter what the question. Are you hungry, are you sad, are you sleepy, and they'd answer to are you drunk, if they understood the concept.

Apparently, drunk husbands don't understand the concept either...or any concepts, for that matter.

Wake up, it's 6:15, when's your tee time time?

It's 6:15, your cell phone is ringing. Are you missing golf?

Wake up, and answer your phone!

Waking up a naked blob of flesh on your livingroom sofa isn't what I call a great start to a Holiday.

To everyone BUT my husband, Happy Canada Day! I hope his Canada Day is just plain awful, if he still heads into work at noon (I doubt THAT will happen!), since he probably had a spankin' Canada Day Eve!

Friday, June 27, 2008

Introducing My New Baby.... previously-loved Canon 20D digital SLR camera!

I just love Craigslist!

I finally brought home my first digital SLR this week. After scouring the Craigslist pages, I managed to get in contact with a guy selling his fairly new 20D. It's a 3-1/2 year old model (you can't even buy it retail anymore, being replaced with the 30D, and currently the 40D), but he bought it only a year-and-a-half ago, and he wants to upgrade his camera body.

He was selling it for $450, a bit less than a few other posts, and a lot less than one particular post. $400-ish is good market-price, so I snapped it up. He kept his lenses, since he was upgrading just the body, so my search continued with the perfect lens.

I could have bought the 17-85mm lens new at about $549, but I'd still have to buy the "mandatory" accessories, like UV filter, polarizer, lens hood. Just the extra cost of all these made the $450 "take all" ad I found even more attractive.

So I met up with this other guy and went to examine the lens and accessories he was selling. Out-of-the-box new. Clean, good-looking, perfect. The lens looked great too! ;-)

I just bought an overpriced camera bag, but it's pretty so I can't complain much. I'm in the market for a flash too. I just might buy that item new, since there's a sale at a local store, and a rebate offer too. I guess I'll have to search around for more photography courses to enrol in; I've forgotten everything I learned when I took some courses on Basic Film Photography years ago. Cha-ching, add this cost also to my expensive hobby!

All this, to capture photos of the Real Baby due in December! And, of course, the rest of the family too.

Tub Of Lard

I'm not talking about baking, here....I'm gaining weight, fast!

I had my second prenatal appointment yesterday. Standard weigh-in and urine test.

Cut to the chase, I gained 8 pounds since my last appointment 4 weeks ago. Not good! My doctor casually asked if I had been exercising, and I gave her the usual sorry excuses: I have no time, I'm feeling tired these days, and my tendency to fight apparent nausea with a mouthful of food. Yeah, that's got to change, I know that. She said, in not so many words (but I know this is what she really wanted to say), is I'll be close to 200 pounds if I don't cut it out.


So, reflecting on this during late-night TV, I decided to get off my ass and "review" that prenatal yoga DVD I bought for the first pregnancy 4 years ago. Yeah, it's not P90X, but it's all I have at home (ok, I DO have an actual pregnancy workout DVD, but I didn't particularly feel like salsa-dancing after midnight, and expect to get an immediate good-night's rest).

I gave myself 10 minutes, then 20, then 30, then thought, just do the whole damn thing, it's not like it's strenuous!

Sure it didn't get my heart thumping, but I got some good stretches in. Something's better than nothing!

I'll be active, starting tomorrow. I'll play around with the little one to tired myself out, and then some. Yes, I say tomorrow will be Day 1, since I can't very well call today A New Day, since I did eat 2 left over smokies for lunch, had a mini 4" pizza for dinner, and I just snacked on some salty popcorm Twists.

Yes, Tomorrow......

Friday, May 30, 2008



Whoever posted a comment to congratulate me, something went wonky and instead of "approving" it, it deleted it instead!

Thank you to whoever wished me congratulations (you know who you are!).

I was pleasantly pleased!

Thursday, May 29, 2008

You're the First To Know, if you RSS my blog.

I'm going perform a mini social experiment here and see if I get any responses.

I'm officially telling the world that I'm pregnant. As readers of my blog, you are the first to know, other than immediate family.

I've unrestricted my last few posts so my blog can be read in its entirety.

If I hear back from some of my close friends and family, that they've read my blog and they congratulate me, then I'll know that they still take the time to care what I'm up to.

Let the games begin!

Friday, May 23, 2008

So Much For The Free Ride....

I'm in deep trouble.

I have a one hour presentation to give in 2 weeks time, to a group of strangers, my peers, and I've just started working on it tonight.

Good God!

Given what I've done so far, what, six PowerPoint slides with corresponding Notes, I'm in deep trouble. I had 6 months to work on this, and now I have 2 weeks (well, actually 1-1/2 weeks, which is when I fly out).

I feel like I'm back in university!

The national society of my profession is holding a Congress in June, at which I had promised to give a lecture. I thought, hell, I get free airfare, free accommodation, and free one-day registration to the Congress, and a Speaker's Gift, for contributing to my profession. Turns out that the provincial society, of which I'm a Board of Director, has also decided to attend the Congress, at the cost of the Society, with transportation and hotel and 4-day registration for the whole Congress. I could've gotten the whole kit and caboodle WITHOUT giving the damn lecture! And to top it off, I don't even get my one-night allowance in my own hotel room, since the Board members are bunking in pairs.

So much for the free ride! That Speaker's Gift better be a damn good gift!

T minus 8 days!

Friday, May 16, 2008

Feeling Fat

I'm so getting bigger during this pregnancy, I can feel it!

So, I won't be one of those cute, dainty, preggie ladies, who don't gain much weight except for baby. No. With all this nausea and thinking I'm hungry but at the same time, not really, I'm going to gain a shitload of weight this time around.

And to think I managed to tip the scale at 121 in March, after all my 6-day per week exercise jaunts, well before I got the flu in the March, and, well, add the Vegas trip afterwards....I'm totally surprised I'm not at 130 lbs yet. I've been hovering around 127 lbs but I feel like 140! I kid you not!

It's getting harder and harder to keep this pregnancy under wraps, even though I'm only 10-11 weeks along. Just how can anyone hide a pregnancy for the whole nine months without family finding out is so beyond me! How is that even possible?!? I guess only on Jerry Springer!

So, if you're managing to read this post, you are either one of my "friends" on and are a priviledged insider or I've personally told you that I'm pregnant. Consider yourself lucky to be in the club. Hopefully I'll be able to spill the beans in a couple of weeks.

Thursday, May 1, 2008

Pomelo-flavoured Menthos

Morning sickness sucks!

I'm into, what, my 8th or 9th week of pregnancy now, and I forgot about the dreaded morning sickness. I don't remember having it this bad!

I wake up, I'm sick, I go to bed, I'm sick, and all in between, I'm sick too.

I dry heaved a couple of times on the weekend, but I'm such a phobic when it comes to puking, I didn't go through with it. I feel nauseous all the time, but it's not the same as my motion sickness I get when I'm in the rear of a car or van; I don't have headaches. Just this retching feeling.


I searched high and low for something to soothe me last night....ginger, mints, teas. Found none of that. All I found were some pomelo-flavoured Menthos my mom gave me last year from her overseas trip to Asia. Well, they were minty and had a slight sour flavour, being pomelo (never heard of them - think super large, gigantic grapefruit, but a tinge sweeter).

I sucked on about 5 or 6 while browsing the web for more morning sickness cures, and finally giving up, while I was trying to drown myself to sleep over the nausea.

Thanks, Mom, for the Menthos! I managed some rest last is another story!

Friday, April 18, 2008

Hmm...really? Can't be...

...pregnant....yes, it's least, I think.

My period hasn't come in about two weeks, and I thought this was getting ridiculous! Then I got to thinking, maybe, just maybe, I'm pregnant. Hmm, when would that have happened? I can't even, honestly, think that far back! LOL

So the first day of my last period was Feb 28. I went to Vegas between Mar 21 to Mar 25, which was when I expected to ovulate. I think (!) I did the deed before then, but I do know I did it once after then too. But I have long cycles (about 33-35 days long), so I'm trying to convince myself I got pregnant after the Vegas trip (if I'm pregnant at all!)

Let's back track as to why I need to determine when I got pregnant: I drank a lot in Vegas. Not once, but several times. Got drunk that first night, but not so much the other night but I think it's mainly because I didn't drink fast. But either way, I still drank a tall vodka cranberry on April 4, so I'm not completely in the clear.

So, yeah, I think I'm pregnant. I went out on Tuesday to buy a pregnancy test at the drugstore, and, in all honesty, I only bought it because it was the cheapest one on the shelf, at almost half price at $12. Considering I was hoping it wouldn't be positive, I wasn't worried about the quality of the sticks!

I didn't take the test right away, but should have because I went out to dinner and was feeling really, really guilty about taking some sips of red wine. I must have had about 6-10 sips before I passed it over to my cousin and told her (and the rest of the table) that I bought pregnancy tests and probably shouldn't drink anymore.

So I finally took it that night. Instructions are to pee for 5 seconds, no more, no less, and wait 2 minutes before reading the window. If you see a "+" then it's positive.

I saw a + right away, as I was counting the 5 seconds, and while I placed the cap back on, and while I laid it flat on the bathroom counter. I walked to the livingroom to sit down for the 2 minutes, then came back to the bathroom to read the instructions on how to interpret the results.

The kicker was the sentence "it doesn't matter if the lines of the + sign are different intensities", with the graphic showing the different appearances of the + sign. Mine matches the first example they showed for a positive result: dark vertical line, fainter horizontal line.


My husband came out of my son's bedroom after putting him to sleep and I called him in the bathroom to interpret the result. He'd never make it as a woman: he couldn't even understand the instructions!

We gingerly high-fived each other, as our faces remained twisted with fear, mine more so than his (actually, mine a lot more!). I've been drinking here and there, I haven't been taking my prenatal pills religiously, I can't fly out to my cousin's wedding in November before the start of my third trimester, I've been eating either horribly, too much, or starving myself, and to top it all off, I'm terribly dehydrated because I drink more coffee than water.

What a great start, Kid!

I have an appointment with my family doctor today at 3:45 to confirm my results, and if it's true, how far along I am, if she can do an ultrasound.

And today is my birthday too. How's that for a surprise?

Saturday, April 5, 2008

Drunk Husbands

You probably don't have to have a husband to know what I'm talking about. Be it boyfriend, common-law or not, significant other, etc, it all boils down to the same thing: husbands and drinking don't mix, or at least shouldn't.

My husband, being of Irish/Scottish descent, can naturally drink. I'm not implying here that those of Irish descent are alcoholics, but simply they can handle their liquor....but to a point, as I can only assume everyone has a threshold.

Well, apparently last night was one of the nights my husband reached his threshold. He gets very belligerent, a word he likes to use to describe a friend of his when that guy gets drunk. He usually says that with disgust, which is terribly ironic since he's exactly the same way, but probably only worse. Last night was not an exception....oh no! Scene: add my family as an audience, you've got a conconction for raw embarrassment and extreme regret.

As much as I would just love to embarrass him in front of the world as payback for his idiotness time and time again, I won't indulge in the sordid details of his splendid drunken glory last night, specifically what happened when we arrived home. Perhaps in another post when my emotions aren't as high. Given I'm in PMS mode right now, he sure is extremely lucky I'm not blogging for vengeance but for some sort of therapy, marriage-counselling, if you will. Sympathy? Yes, please....lots of it.

Note to self: must invent pull-out bed in bathroom one day.

Friday, March 28, 2008

Hungry....all the time!

What gives?

I come back from Vegas and I've got hunger pangs like you wouldn't believe! And it's not like I'm reaching for good food either.

Today I gorge on kettle chips at work and then afterwards head to my in-laws where I end up stuffing my face with cheese sticks, nachos, spinach artichoke dip, cheetos/sun chips/doritos mix and a few swigs of pop (I hardly ever drink pop!).


I think the only healthy thing I had all day was a fat-free yogurt, and maybe some homemade chicken soup. I don't think the baked spaghetti can really qualify as completely healthy, with a thick layer of mozza baked on top...

Damn Vegas buffets! My stomach still remembers!

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Vegas, Baby

Just came back from Vegas for my cousin's stagette/her fiance's stag party.


There were about 15 (I think!) of us, most of us from Vancouver, some from Edmonton, one from Toronto and one from Jersey. So many tales spinning in my head, but just can't spit any of them out. Let's try...

Table service at Tao. Would've been an experience to be on the rooftop with $450-a-bottle-of-Grey-Goose, but just didn't make it to the roof! Dancing like a maniac on the next level down was a high in itself. Insane music. Insane bar tabs! My cousin just got impatient at the bar, waiting for drinks, so ordered herself up a table on the roof. By 3 am I just needed to crash, so I'm regretting I didn't make it to the roof. Damn. What the hell was I thinking?!?!

Racing to the airport a la Home Alone. We drove down to Bellingham Airport on Good Friday and got stuck in a 4hr+ lineup at the border! From the time we got into the lineup at 8am, it took us 3.5 hr to cross the border at 11:30am. With our 1:25 flight, and supposed instructions to arrive 2.5 hrs before the flight, time was not on our side. We still had to park at the overflow parking lot way over there and take a shuttle to the airport. We checked in and passed security at about 12:50 pm. With 10 people driving from Vancouver, two cars made it across and we were still waiting for the third car carrying two cousins and his girlfriend. 1:10 pm, waiting at the gate, and still no third car!!! Finally a couple of minutes later, one of my cousins from that car was running to the gate. By this time, half the plane had boarded. Cutting it close. Me and a couple of others held back and waited at the end to board the plane, trying to hold back boarding in case my other cousin, who was parking the car way over there in the overflow parking lot could still make it on time; his girlfriend checked in already, but we couldn't see her, and she wasn't boarding the plane unless my cousin came back in time. 1:22 as I started boarding, the last two are running towards the gate! And with 2 to 3 minutes to spare! I found out later that their gas light on their car had lit up about 30 minutes earlier at the border, and they weren't even sure they'd even make it to the airport at all! The rest of the clan on the plane had assumed they were no-shows right up until the point they were walking down the aisle. What a way to start the trip!

Buffets. Shit, had too many. Almost hit a fourth one but declined. So much for my exercising for the past 5 weeks. Didn't hit the major ones like Bellagio or Wynn, but they were all still good. Todai (Japanese sushi and seafood) and Pampas (Brazilian Steakhouse) at The Miracle Mile shops at Planet Hollywood (formerly The Aladdin) and Carnival World Buffet at The Rio. The fourth invite was for The Bellagio, but good thing I declined...the line was so long they went to Caesar's instead and it apparently sucked. I'm also Cheeseburger'ed out!

Weather. Tanks, shorts, flip flops. What else can I say? It was hot enough to hit the pool and do some tanning. Got dark fast. Sure beats what we came home to yesterday! Brrrrr!

Alcohol. Lots of it. Wished I drank more. A Fat Tuesday 2-foot pina colada did me within hours of landing. Must remember to not drink on an empty stomach and when trying to get over the flu.

Gamblng. Won $140 on slots. Haywire Deluxe. Find it, use it, win. Played it four years ago and it's still just as contagious. Too bad I lost $25 on roulette. What an hour can do for you in Vegas.

Shopping. Hit the Las Vegas Premium Outlet. Scored at Banana Republic and Coach. I showed some self-restraint by only hitting one shopping spree, declining Fashion Show Mall on Monday (opted to go swimming instead). Saved more money than I actually spent, thanks for the glorious deals had. Ahhh, a good shopping day really hits the spot.

Thunder from Down Under. No comment. Really....what happens in Vegas....

My husband and I had a great time with the family and friends. We were able to enjoy ourselves, knowing that our son was in good hands with my parents; I wouldn't have gone otherwise. Our almost-three-year-old didn't even miss us, apparently. That kinda sucks. But when I think about it, it only sucked not because I wished he cried and threw tantrums, pleading to see me each day but that he didn't do those things, which only means that my little boy is growing up and doesn't need me as much as he used to. What a little independent boy he's become, and I'm proud that he was mature enough to spend that much time away from us.

I think this Vegas trip has made me grow up. Now back to reality...

Thursday, March 20, 2008

What the F*#% !!!

Ok, if you can understand what I am typing here...I will try and keep this clear of errors...

I am typing away, creating my very first Mary Kay newsletter (yes, yes, I am a not rile me silly, as that is not the issue here). So, anyways, I am typing away, and after trying to using keyboard shortcuts to copy and paste, my font on my screen gets really, really tiny. What the F*#$ !!

Ok, I have seen this before, so after uselessly playing around with the keyboard I realize that I can go to View at the menu above and select Text Size and violà! Fixed.

Aha, but now I have another major problem. Well, you see how I spelled violà just now...with a french accent. WELL! Let me tell you that my keyboard just suddenly now decided that it is going to be French now! My question marks end up like É and so do my quotation marks -- È --- see what I meanÉ damn! My backslash key gives me à. and my apostrophes are è!!!

What the F*#$ !!!

So, I know people are reading thie blog, so help me out do you fix thisÉ damn, question marks!

You think this is funnyÉ I canèt continue like this! Damn you, keyboard!

Monday, March 17, 2008

On Being Sick

Being sick sucks.

I've got a trip to Vegas this coming weekend, and I just can't be sick. What's the point? I'd rather be puking my guts because I drank too much over puking because my stomach can't take the alcohol. There is a difference. The first choice is purely due to drink and nothing else. Throw in a bout of the flu, then there's no mercy.

Being sick sucks.

Friday, March 7, 2008

Body Fat Composition

I emailed my "trainer" the other day to ask when I can pick up some IsoFlex protein powder (Strawberry is yum-yum delicious -- hard to find!) and he suggested that I come in also do a body fat testing to find out how effective my workouts have been.

I call him my "trainer" because I havent technically had any personal training sessions with him, but he was my bootcamp instructor last Fall, when he kicked my butt back into shape (why I started this blog in the first place). So he'll remain my "trainer" until I pursue some one-on-one with him. [I must be in a wierd mood right now, because I found that comment quite intriguing!)

So, I went to go see him yesterday at lunchtime. After some chitchat, he proceeded to weigh me (I'm 125lbs, just like my digital scale at home says, which is down 5 lbs from the time I last weighed in on Nov 2nd, 2007). Then he printed my body fat composition reading off the Futrex machine.

Wow.....between Nov 2nd and now, I lost a whopping 0.1% body fat!


These past 4 weeks of going to to the gym, 6 days a week, and I ONLY get 0.1% off. That's worse than any sale you'll find at any department store! Choked, utterly choked....

But he says my result is still a good thing. Why? Considering that I'm working out on my own, with no training partner, I'm still managing to maintain what I accomplished. Many folks who go through bootcamp tend to gain some extra body fat because they're not working out at the same intensity.

Despite this, i'm still likng what I"m seeing in the mirror. I feel and look different at 26.5% today than I did at the 26.6% back in November. I look leaner, I think. My upper body is developing quite nicely (I can see my triceps finally!) and I've definitely got a "two-pack" going on. If I could only manage to learn to post a picture up here, I'd try and post something. Meanwhile, just take my word for it.

So I changed my routine this morning. According to my trainer, I've got to focus on the number of reps rather than weights if I want to focus on fat loss. Vice versa encourages more muscle gain. So instead of doing my lower body exercises at lower reps and heavier weights, I tried doing 5 sets of 20 reps at a given weight, until my muscles exhausted. For example. I could leg press 225 but used 145 lbs, 20 times for 5 sets. I could probably go 185 and try for 3 sets instead. Next time.

I was really hoping to see this Body-For-Life program through. It's worked for others, why not me? Hmm. Do I listen to a book and trust before-and-after photos, or listen to proven experience? It's still a toss up.

Tuesday, February 26, 2008


Today I found out that my cousin is expecting her second child. She and I were pregnant at the same time back in 2004/2005, where in April 5 she gave birth to her daughter and on April 10, I gave birth to my son. We were the first ones on the that side of the family to start the next generation, so the pregnancies were buzzing with excitement.

My cousin is due in September. I'm happy for her, truly I am. There were speculations and predictions of sorts (old wives tales and other foolery) suggesting that she'll have only one child. I'm happy that's not the case. I'd hate to have been pidgeonholed like that, like fate.

However, it's like I'm missing something here. Like I mentioned earlier, I was questioning when to have another baby. My son will be 4 next year. I definitely don't want him to be much older before having a second. But it's like I'm ready....yet not ready.

One of my good friends gave birth to her first child, a boy, this past week. Through unfortunate circumstances, we haven't had much opportunity to spend time together while she was pregnant, so I didn't really get to enjoy her pregnancy with her. I have yet to see her, but have wished her well with the new addition. I'm sure more pangs of mommyhood will hit me then.

But, getting back to why I'm not ready. Many reasons.

Number one reason: I'm not ready to get fat again. Look, I don't care what people say about you where you're pregnant. You're glowing! You look wonderful! How beautiful! My ass, I'm beautiful! Rotund, pot-bellied, wide-load, jabba-the-hut all come to mind instead. Gimme a break. I'll never get to be one of the women who look still ungodly beautiful and thin while pregnant. (Ok, so I'm not ungodly beautiful and so much thin right now, but follow me on this...). Or one of those women who bounce back to paper thin normalness after a couple of months after birth. I'm destined to be fighting pregnancy flab until the NEXT kid after that, if I ever get around to the third kid I thought I'd always have.

I'm just about enjoying the most normal body I've had in 3.5 years. I've done a couple of bootcamps and have been hitting the gym everyday for the past couple of weeks, and I am still not happy with my body. Granted, I've always been unhappy with my scale and my thunder thighs and flabby arms, but now I've got that and an added muffin top that I never had to deal with before (I had a 25 inch waist at one point....I'd be lucky if I can get under 30 before I cave in to pregnancy).

I said there are a number of reasons. But they're all shadowed by the fact that I don't want to get fat. I'm not ready yet. I need more skinny time! But my son does need a playmate desperately...I can't be playing livingroom hockey with him forever!

Saturday, February 23, 2008

5 a.m. Rude Awakenings

Tomorrow will mark the end of my second week on my crazy workout routine....only 10 more weeks after that!

The goal is to get up early in the morning and either run or lift weights, riding on the fact that 20 minutes of exercise prior to eating anything is better than an hour of activity in the afternoon. When I can't get to the gym by 5:30am, I have to hold off on breakfast, pack the kid up for daycare (after he eats, watches some TV, changes out of his pajamas....a passage that can take up to 2 hours some days), then head to the gym, which by then I'm a bit delusional on the treadmill but manage to make it though my 20 minutes.

Today was a strange day. Got up at 4;50am. I had a 45 minute workout today, which meant if I got to the gym by 5:15, I'll be able to make it back home by 6:15 so hubby can leave for work.

For the first time, the gym was completely deserted when I arrived. Being a 24 hr gym, there's usually ONE person there. Not this time. I had to turn on the lights....pretty spooky. I figured I had 15 minutes before one of the regulars came in.

Sure enough, in a couple of mnutes, in comes little Miss Terminator.

Miss Terminator is a nickname I give this lady who I see at the gym at 5:30 on most days. Tiny framed, looking a bit old for what I guess is about 48 (she's probably younger, but I don't want to give her any benefit of the doubt). Because she's on the thin side, you can see her thin biceps and deltoids. She has a thin runner's body. And her demeanor seems as cold as the pavement she probably runs on outside of the gym.

I said good morning to her when she walked in, and quite cheerfully, I might add. Did she reply back? Ok, she may have been taking a sip of water after she walked in the door, but neither did I hear her say anything after she guzzled. Pshaw! Whatever to you.

Good thing I was working on my lower body today; I was mainly using the leg press machine and not the range of free weights I use for my upper body. When working my upper body, I use a range of weights, increasing in weight but decreasing in reps performed. One day, she grabbed my 17.5 lb weights I needed (so I left them back on the mistake). The next time, I kept those 17.5 lb-ders with me and I "let her" borrow them. She didn't even say thanks.

So, note to self: no point trying to look all hot by working out and being bitchy getting there.

I did my 45 minutes and left the gym, with not even a glance or a hmph in her direction. See you Monday, Miss Terminator!

And when driving home, yes, I was driving a little like a maniac, doing 65 in a 50km zone (it was shortly after 6am, after all), I was zooming down a slight hill and some idiot decides to quickly take a left turn. I very nearly clipped this guy's rear bumper, had it not been for my quick braking and blasting my horn for 5 seconds to tell him I was pissed off. Good thing you screeched your wheels, sucker, and flew past did not want to encounter me after my Miss Terminator issue.

I was glad to reach home, in one piece. 6:15am. Another 24 hours until I do this whole thing over again.

Have Mercy!

Thursday, February 14, 2008

My Body-For-Life

Ok, I'm on a new fix.

I haven't blogged in the longest time, but I've been busy. I WAS in the middle of writing up a post about the new family budget, but a gave that up about a month ago, seeing that writing about numbers is just about as boring as writing numbers, so I'll save that for another time.

Right now, and I'm in a middle of a challenge with my coworker. We started the beginning of February. She's trying to lose weight, I'm trying to lose weight, so we're trying to motivate each other in getting active. We even have this calendar pinned up to the cork board by our desks, where we write down what we've done for the day, hers penned in red, mine in blue. At a glance, we can see how much we're doing, and hopefully motivate the other to do better.

Seeing that I haven't stepped into the gym since Dec. 31 (read, I haven't been to the gym so far this year), I thought what better way to take on this friendly challenge by finding a plan and simply following it. Enter Body-For-Life.

Now, if you haven't heard of this, I encourage you to check out Body For Life. I've had this book, Body For Life, on my bookshelf for years, probably going on 5 years or more, and I was always in awe at the transformations I saw in the photos that lined the cover. Twelve weeks to a new body. Pshaw! Yeah, right! So I say this everytime I pick up the book. But this time, maybe it'll be different, maybe if I give it a try it might work. Even if I get half the results I expect, at least it's something, right?

So the program consists of doing approximately 45 minutes of upper body exercises, 45 minutes of lower body exercises, and 20 minutes of cardio, alternating between each of these for 6 days a week. I'm so used to do doing mostly cardio and adding the occasional weight training session, so going to the gym without sweating like crazy on the treadmill will be very strange.

I started this past Monday, and if I were going to give this 12 weeks, I'll be finished on May 3. I'm hoping for anything, yet expecting everything. It's a game plan anyways. Wish me luck.

The Family Budget

My New Year's Resolution, if I were to call it as such, was to get a better grip on our family's finances and bring us to a comfortable financial position. After 5-1/2 years of marriage (read: sharing my hard-earned money with someone else), I finally started an official budget for the family. I've been planning to do it for months, but I finally put my foot down, bit my lip and said "This is the month!"

My husband jumped on board. Oh, alright, he didn't jump but he wasn't kicking and screaming, which is a good sign. I must add, I am the shopper in the family, but my husband takes the cake when it comes to accumulating receipts for snacks, pop, junk food. While I haven't bought anything in months, he routinely charges ridiculous amounts on his credit card.

So it's now mid-February and we're not quite over the hump yet. We've got a Vegas trip we're saving up for, end of March, so a lot of our extra funds are going there. After this month, hopefully we'll have a better idea of how to really allocate our hard-earned money, when there are no credit card bills to pay.

The only things charged to the Visa are preauthorized bills. I did charge a small number of items, such as some gas purchases, but it really works out well if I pay that amount immediately back onto my Visa. When I look back at my online statement, these amounts cancel each other out and it's like have a debit card rolled into your Visa. For the first time, hubby has a zero balance on his Visa statement, mine has a credit rolling over for the 2nd month (Dividend dollars...looking online for something to spend), and our family Visa has just preauths of under $300.

Life is looking good again.

Sunday, January 27, 2008


Life's been busy, and to top it all off, we need new tenants by February 1st.

Our previous tenant left after 13 months. Nice enough guy, a little nerdy around the edges (not a bad thing), but seemingly proven intelligent (though I do frown on his opinionated written word). I surf onto his website every so often. He's apparently a self-professed expert on all music electronic, if that isn't nerdy enough, I don't know what is. I chuckle because I sometimes liken him to Ross Gellar from the TV show "Friends" fame in his high school keyboard days. But I don't think this guy actually creates music; he just classifies them: house, (french, deep, euro, etc), jungle, trance, etc. Like I care to know the difference.

Hopefully we'll be able to find someone in time. I'd hate to find out what we'll have left in the bank after paying for next month's daycare.

Saturday, January 12, 2008

Brain Farts

What the heck was I drinking when I wrote that last post? I apologize for the melancholy...I shouldn't be allowed to blog at 2am!

Anyone who knows me knows that I take on a lot on my plate; I can't concentrate on one thing alone. I multi-task. I have lots of hobbies, or could-be hobbies; if I had the time, I'd do it all.

While sitting at my desk at work today, my mind my buzzing. Brain farts. Yes, brain farts. A rather obtuse description of my rather flatulent brain working hard. Here I present a smattering of what went through my head today.

  • Half-marathon. Yes, I would like to try it again. I did it once, back in 2003. 2:16:11, give or take a few seconds. My only problem is (ok, there is actually more than one!) I used to have quite a running base before tackling a half-mara. I did a few 5 and 10k runs before hand. Hey, if Katie Holmes can run the New York, and look fantastic, can't I get a piece of that satisfaction too? Could I even afford new shoes? Katie probably had 7 pairs...
  • If you haven't checked out Lainey's website, it's a hoot. Wow, I wish I could sit around all day and blog about juicy celebrity gossip AND get paid! A sweet gig on eTalk doesn't hurt either. Sure beats looking down a microscope.
  • University of Phoenix. Do people actually receive real degrees or are they the collegiate-equivalent of those postage-stamp adhesives I see in the bulk mail envelope advertising for high school diplomas, amongst the other highly-coveted choices of Professional Dog Walker or overweight Fitness Instructor? I fondly recall the chuckle I enjoyed when I saw this high school "diploma" belonging to the 16 year old son of my mother's friend, the same kid who, at Grade 10, was failing miserably at the real school he skipped out of constantly. I guess he needed a permanent vacation.
  • Vegas. I need an el-cheapo flight from home to Vegas in the long weekend in March for a stagette. Yeah, do hundreds others. Party weekend....bring on the booze!
  • Pregnancy. When's the best time? Is it time? Gotta wait until after the March weekend of debauchery. Gotta wait until after that half-marathon I'm crazy enough to consider. Gotta wait until the wedding in November I have to attend in Virginia. Gotta wait.
  • Birthdays. My sister is turning 30 this week. That makes me 34 this year; I'm getting old. Little brother is turning a Quarter Century. Ugh, I'm double-old.
I pretty much blanked out after that. Then I repeated the whole loop again with something else off-topic, starting with Guitar Hero (So grateful to have finished the last Battle on Easy in Career Play last night!) and ending with antiperspirant (you apply it at night, even before a shower, and it still works? Guffaw!)

And as soon as the brain farts occur, they cease, just like that, without a warning. Thank God; sometimes I wear myself out thinking so fast.

Monday, January 7, 2008


I'm a busy mom and wife trying to run a household, working full-time hours (and then some). I don't have time to do movies, in theatre or on DVD. I tried on Friday to watch go to the movies, no babysitter; I tried today, still no babysitter. No matter, since it's been a year or so, what's another weekend? I finally settled down and watched a movie on the small screen. By force, rather.

I was busy filing through old bills, working on some financial housekeeping (a future post, I promise), and my husband keeps passing by the room, pausing, and giving me this burning stare as if to say, "You busy?" He did this a few times within a 5- minute span, always shrugging, "oh, nothing", to my impatient "What?!?"

So I follow him to the livingroom and ask, "Do you really want me to watch Mr. & Mrs Smith with you?". Yes, was his reply, you'd enjoy it.

So I sat and watched, by force, like I said. We've owned the movie for a while, but I never got around to watching it. Entertaining piece of Hollywood. I won't reveal more about the movie in case you haven't seen it, but I probably was the last person in North America to bear witness to the Jolie-Pitt love affair unfolding on the screen. I must admit, that's one sexy couple!

We finished the movie, and my husband thought he would pop in another DVD for us to watch, since I seemed to be in the mood and not distracted like I normally am.

We've been test-driving a DVD service for the past couple of months, where we create a list of movies we want to watch and we get them sent in the mail and return them back via mail too. No late fees, no walking to Blockbuster. It's a little bit like Christmas when we find out what movies we get sent. We've had a couple of DVDs lying around just waiting to get watched; my husband popped in one of these movies: Blood Diamonds.

My husband had seen most of it already, unable to wait until we watched it together. Naturally, he fell asleep halfway through. I, myself, was entralled! As a pacifist, and a parent, I watched wistfully at the characters' plights. Starring Leonardo DiCaprio, Djimon Hounsou, and Jennifer Connelly, it tells of Sierra Leone in the 1990s, ravaged by revolutionaries and rampant genocide, cursed with the taste for wealth due to trafficked conflict diamonds. A moving story of a diamond smuggler, a journalist and a man whose family means more to him than all the diamonds in the world. An amazing, gut-wrenching movie which is stll keeping me awake at 2am.

I used to watch movies and not be affected like this. It's one of the reasons why I don't mind watching horror movies; I never carry any of it away with me. But, somehow, a responsibility has grown within me, and I have this inane compassion that just spills out when I watch dramas now. Case in point: Pursuit of Happyness, starring Will Smith. Never revealed before, I had an emotional breakdown during that movie. I commiserated so well with the main character, the dams broke and I just cracked, cried and cried and cried like I never had before. To this day, I believe that was a turning point in my life; funny how a silly, ol' movie does that to you.

So, just like after Pursuit of Happyness, pondering on my own financial destiny and my meaning of happiness, I ponder yet again, tonight on the genocide and emotional scars of Sierra Leone's youth. The movie, despite its Hollywood sensationalism, reminds me of how frivolous and petty my own problems are and how there are many, many issues in this world that are just so much greater than ourselves. I survive to go to work to pay off a mortgage, spend whatever time possible with family, keep the house clean; others just survive. Period. For me, movies have become a lesson to learn from, a window, of sorts, of what life is like on the other side for others. Being born in Canada, I don't have a history of walking through barren fields, heavy jungle or even urban disaster zones of gunfire. I'm blessed to own a home, my parents still talk to me, I have a car, a job, my health, even some friends. Clearly, I have many things in life to be thankful for; a couple of them lie peacefully asleep in beds under warm blankets, breathing gently amidst the still of the night. I should join them, and dream with them, because I can.

Saturday, January 5, 2008

Towel Bar

Yes, friends, we have a towel bar!

In previous posts I may have alluded to my disappointment in unsuccessfully persuading my husband to install another towel bar in our bathroom, after my toddler decided to swing on our previous one for fun. After almost a couple of months of hanging my wet towels on the handle of our closet door in the hallway, we finally have a place to hang our towels again!

It's a rather stunning towel bar, as far as towel bars go. We got it in chrome, since most of our fixtures match, and it's a double-bar, which will bode well for the survival of our marriage.

We have a really tiny bathroom, with really only enough space for one attached towel bar. I had always taken the bar while my husband always resorted to hanging his towels behind the bathroom door, on a plastic, accordion-like hook system (installed when we bought the house, and we didn't bother taking it down). Call me anal, fussy, whatever, but I like to hang wet items up and get really teed off when I find a wet towel over my side of the bed. By the time I find this used towel, it's been few hours and it's dried, somewhat, taking on a stiffened shape of a ball. If you've ever had the pleasure of hanging up a stiff towel over a plastic knob such like we have behind our bathroom door, you too would enjoy the endless joviality of bending over again and again to pick up the towel off the floor; they refuse to stay on the hook unless wet. Many a violent time had I had with that towel and hook!

It's a tough call, actually, which I hate more, the wet towel on my bed or it falling off that plastic rack. By having a dedicated place to hang our towels once again, I'll be able to direct my husband to bring his towel to its righteous place, be it wet or dry. All order is finally restored....for now!

Wednesday, January 2, 2008

2008...Bring It!

I got a little depressed a few hours ago, reflecting on the past year and what became of it. What brought it on was a situation I find myself in year after year: finding a christmas gift certificate from the previous year, and wondering where in the world was I, that I couldn't take the opportunity and spend "free money" on myself in the previous 365+ days. It was a spa gift certificate given to me by my brother in 2006. Judging by the date on the gfit card, he bought it as a last minute choice, resorting to ambiguous, generic gift-giving rather than giving something I wanted or needed.

But maybe that's the problem. Maybe it's not the fact that I didn't use the certficate, wondering if it's gone stale, and my incessant penchant for "getting value" out of everything, or that my younger brother actually thought I was worth the $70 to go pamper myself. And maybe it's not the plain reminder that a whole year in my life flashed before me, and I haven't gotten around to smelling the roses and taking care of myself or even being organized enough to realize my pile of gift certificates accumulates more and more dust each year. Am I bothered more with the fact that my brother didn't think he knew me well enough to buy me an actual present? Am I mad at myself for allowing me to devalue his well-meaning gift when I didn't use it? And why do I psychoanalyze everything......

Maybe it's just that time of year. Many of us female-species tend to have a time-of-the-month, yes, I admit. I submit a possibly new imprint on the female persona by way of that time-of-the-year. Yearly cyclical moods must have an impact on how a female operates. Case in point....most females, correct me if I'm wrong, go ahead and make New Year Resolutions in the hopes of emerging a thinner, smarter, prettier version. Believe me when I say I'm still working on my beta version and have yet to set a release date!

But nonetheless, the beginning of a New Year always signifies, to me, not really what is good to come, but what in the past was bad. Not remembering the past year, alone, is bad, very bad. I can't say anything terrible happened to me, but nor did anything absolutely stellar happen to me. I used to do resolutions, and the typical ones at that. Lose 10 pounds, save more money, get organized, etc. I've stopped resolving to do much of anything, simply because history always dictated the opposite of my intentions. But if I were to resolve to do anything this year, I think it would be this: remember the extraordinary mundane.

Huh? Ok, my life's isn't fast-paced, hell, it's not not even clocking 50. But every single moment of boring I come across should mean something. If the house is quiet, that means everyone is content; if the house is loud, then life abounds and my family is active, healthy, alive. The floor has son has food he wants to eat, so who am I to stop him? So I'm loading the least I've got one now, and now have the option of loading or handwashing. More laundry? At least my washer is holding on despite how horrible it sounds and all the work I put it through. Husband's dirty socks on the floor again? Ok, I haven't figured out the wondrousness in that yet...but you catch my drift.

This reminds me of an email we've probably all received, about living life to the fullest, that there's nothing negative that abounds, and all is good in the world. I want to believe it's true, and that's my resolution. Wear my special dress even though it's not a special day. Make my face up each day, even though I feel like crap and feel like a mask would work more wonders. Smile more get smiles in return. Just being plain positive about everything and not being a schmuck. Maybe, if I do this, I'll be able to remember my mundane life in clearer focus. I guess I should start by not calling it mundane.

So, 2008, welcome! I give you myself, whole, uncut, raw. Happy New Year, everyone!