Tuesday, November 13, 2012

The End Is Near


For a variety of reasons, it looks like T-Rex will be here by Thursday.

If he doesn't arrive on his own before then, I'm supposed to go in Wednesday evening to be induced. Not exactly what we expected; I really fully expected to be waiting until next week at least.

But it turned out my options, if T-Rex hadn't decided to come by next Monday, were:
  1. Be induced at a different hospital next week, because with the short week for Thanksgiving, our hospital was already booked.
  2. Keep waiting until the following week.
  3. Be induced at our hospital this week.
I like the hospital I picked. I chose it for good reasons: it's a smaller, newer facility; the nurses are friendly; the policies are more in line with how I want T-Rex's first day or so to go. I don't know anything about the other hospital except that it doesn't have as good a reputation for quality medical care. No thank you.

Option Two would kind of be fine with me. I don't mind waiting for nature to take its course. But the doctor pointed out, "That baby's already plenty big. He's only going to get bigger, and your pelvis is not actually that large."

(Let me point out here that I was three weeks late myself. My mom finally went into labor, labored for something like twenty-four hours, and then her body just stopped. No more contractions. It gave up on getting me out of there. I was born by C-section, developmentally already acting like a three-week old and not a newborn. So I'm not sure I like my genetic odds if I decide to just keep waiting.)

Though statistics say inducing is more likely to end with a C-section, the doctor believes that we are actually less likely to end up with complications and/or a C-section if we induce now than if we wait past forty-two weeks for T-Rex to come on his own (or end up needing to induce at that point).

Wednesday night they'll start with various methods to try and jumpstart a natural labor. We'll see how things go overnight and only start pitocin on Thursday if necessary--the doctor and I would both really, really prefer to avoid the pitocin if at all possible, and he's hopeful they can maybe get things moving in other ways.

So. T-Rex has about thirty-four hours to decide to come on his own, which would be nice, but doesn't really look likely. He's apparently pretty cozy in there and sees no reason to venture out into this strange new world.

Guess I should go on some more long walks, after all. ^_~

Monday, November 12, 2012


Well, here we are. Today is T-Rex's due date, not that he cares. He still shows no signs of going anywhere.

I'm at work today and have a doctor's appointment this afternoon to see if there's any progress. If not, I guess I'll just keep working this week and we'll check again next Monday. They won't let me go too much over a week past the due date without inducing and are keeping an eye on the calcification of the placenta.

In the meantime, I'm getting really. tired. of people's comments.

Mostly, there's just only so much you can think of to say to someone at this stage in the pregnancy, and it's not all the individual people's faults that I'm hearing the same things over and over and over.

But on the other hand.

If the due date is today, why have people been making comments about trying to jumpstart labor for six freaking weeks already?

Seriously. He would have been premature if he had been born at the time people first started encouraging me to walk around a lot or jump up and down. He's just now due today, people. Why would I have been trying to get him out any sooner?

Also. Why does everyone keep telling me to go for long walks? Do they think I've been sitting on my butt for the past ten months? Maybe I've invested in one of those little motor scooters?

I'm still going to the gym three times a week, plus my Wednesday one-hour exercise class. I was going to Zumba until we switched over to weekly appointments at about the 35 week mark, because my appointments are the same afternoons as Zumba class. I'm still in the habit of parking at the back of store parking lots because it irritates me to drive around looking for a closer spot when I can just zoom into one farther away and hoof it.

None of this has bothered T-Rex in the slightest so far. I'm not sure why it's supposed to tell him it's time to get the heck out of Dodge now.

Yesterday, the DDH and I did two laps of the mall because we couldn't find the store where we planned to buy the MIL's birthday present. And then we took the dogs for a forty-five minute walk (in the freezing cold! where did that come from?) that evening.

Saturday, I weeded the entire garden (finally!) and dug up a bunch of potatoes (yay!). I've cleaned the laundry area in the garage, made sure the guest beds are ready for visitors, set up the playpen/bassinet upstairs, vacuumed the master bedroom.

None of this activity has encouraged him to come yet. So stop telling me to go for a long walk. And definitely stop telling me to jump up and down. That's dangerous.

Ok, end rant. Here's a picture of me at the fabulous forty week mark:

And the profile:

Wow, the picture quality there is terrible, even for me and my sad little phone. Oops.

Everything's ready. We're just waiting now. I'm still just working and doing all the normal stuff around the house I always do.

Friday, November 9, 2012

Nursery Porn, Part III

The floor and the walls looked great. The crib looked great. The closet had tiny baby clothes in it.

But really, the nursery was still just an empty room with a crib in it.

The DDH and I plundered other rooms in the house to provide a shelf/changing table, bedside table, and rocking chair. We hung up the decor pieces that matched the crib bedding (the MIL bought us the entire set). We completed a few other decorating projects. We made no fewer than four trips to Home Depot to get the blinds cut down to the right size for the window.

And so, without further ado, the grand finale!





Bring on the nursery porn!

The crib, complete with fuzzy dino mobile and sweet dino wall decals:

The MIL and Step-Sister In Law painted the letters and had them on the mantel at the baby shower. Now they're above the windows with the awesome stegasaurus valances and the way-more-trouble-than-they-should-have-been blinds.

The SSIL also made this ribbon for me to wear at the shower. It now adorns the door so everyone knows what's within.

Forgive my truly awful phone pictures; the battery on my real camera is dead and I can't find the charger.

This is the wall opposite the door, with the changing table station, the rocking chair, and the night table.

The table we stole from the guest bedroom; the finish almost exactly matches the crib! It has a cute little slanted shelf underneath on which I've put a bunch of board books. The majority of our children's and YA books are on the built-in shelves in the guest room.

The rocking chair was actually in the DDH's nursery when he was a baby. It's not the most comfortable for long-term sitting, but it serves the purpose.

And more little dino decals!

So the story behind this ugly but really functional piece of furniture: The MIL's husband worked at Home Depot for many years. One of his coworkers built this and another piece for use in the tool department where they worked. It was a storage cabinet/workstation, and it's just unfinished wood with plexiglass on top.

The coworker retired. He didn't want Home Depot to keep the pieces, which he had made himself with his own materials, but he didn't really have any use for them. So he gave them to the StepFather In Law, who gave them to us, because we are furniture magpies.

Eventually the DDH may refinish it, but he is understandably sick of sanding and staining right now. So for now, it's just unfinished wood. But all the shelves are fully adjustable to different heights, and it's about the right height for a changing table. So yay!

I have the changing pad on top (secured per safety instructions). That blue box on top is actually a tissue box covered in duct tape; it holds a bunch of cloth wipes (aka t-shirts cut to wipe size with pinking shears). The green basket holds cloth diapers; the basket below it has receiving and swaddling blankets, and the two below that have mittens and hats. The wooden clementines box has burp rags, and the blue plastic and black cloth drawer units hold a variety of random baby things--diaper cream, Lansinoh, pacifiers, etc.

Yes, we have the canvas wall art that matches the bedding, valances, lamp, and wall decals, too. He's the first grandbaby on both sides, okay?

Do you not just love that wooden t-rex pull toy? Mom found it on Amazon. The lion and dog in the rocking chair are mine from when I was little.

The closet is much fuller than in Part II, isn't it? Still pretty organized, though! I'm on the lookout for either a brown-and-blue or dinosaur shower curtain or other fabric to hang up eventually.

A few more pictures:

There's one more project for the wall over the changing table, but since it's only about two-thirds done and there's no guarantee it will be complete before T-Rex arrives and the room stops being so clean and organized, I figured I'd better go ahead and post these now. ^_^

So that's it! The culmination of all our the DDH's hard work! Isn't it gorgeous? It is absolutely the only room in the house that is even remotely designed, coordinated, painted, etc. I already told you the crib is the only Purchased New piece of furniture in the house (ok, fine, other than our desk chairs).

Clearly T-Rex is a First Baby. My apologies, Subsequent Children, that your living spaces were never this totally awesome.

But for now? So happy.

Okay, I cannot get over the adorableness of this lamp. Or the pull-toy, for that matter.


Nursery Porn, Part II

In Part I, we left the nursery with the floor finally finished. Now it was time to tackle the walls.

First, the DDH painted the bottom three feet or so brown:

Then, the top part of the wall and the ceiling got a coat of light blue paint:

We removed the blades from the ceiling fan to make it easier
to paint the ceiling.

And another:

And finally the bones of the room were done and I could start moving in the cute baby things.

Like clothes in the closet:

We removed the doors from the closet when refinishing the floor and painting, but I convinced the DDH to leave them off. If you've ever had one of those tiny sliding-door closets, you know they're a huge pain when you're trying to find something.

You slide the door all the way to the left and scrabble around on the right side. Then you need to get something on the left side and have to slide the doors the other way. Then you need something in the middle and you can never quite see where it is. And between the doors and your own shadow, the interior of the closet is always dark--they never have lights on the inside (admittedly, where would a light go?).

This drove me crazy with the master closet upstairs, so I had the DDH remove the drawers, stuck in a tension rod (like for a shower curtain) and hung some curtains that I had inherited from an old college friend. The curtains can be shoved all the way to one side or the other (or the middle) so I can see and access the space more easily.

Since the nursery is really small, removing the doors to the closet also help to open the space a bit and make it seem bigger. For now it's curtainless, but I'm on the lookout for a nice one to hang up, since I'm sure the closet will not forever remain as neatly organized as it is now. ^_~

Then, my parents came into town for the wedding shower and brought the crib they bought us. It is, seriously, the only new piece of furniture in the entire house. Even our computers were bought used, okay? Oh wait, our nice computer desk chairs were both bought new. Other than that, every single piece of furniture in our house is inherited or thrifted--all of the beds (and there are four), all the dressers, all the couches and tables and chairs and desks.

But not the crib. And it's a beautiful one, isn't it?

Dad and the DDH set up the crib and I filled it with all the matching bedding stuff my MIL bought us. It was adorable.

Come see the grand finale in Part III!

Nursery Porn, Part I

You know this is what you've been wanting to see.

The nursery: she is done!

Thanks to the DDH's hard work over the past several months, we finally have a finished nursery, just in time for a certain T-Rex's arrival. Not that he'll actually be there overnight for awhile, but all his stuff needed a place to live. :-)

Let's take you back to the beginning. Originally, this room was sort of a storage-slash-guest-bedroom. The Roommate lived here for almost a year, and I wish I had a photo of what it looked like during his occupation. But here it is after we moved him out:

Ugly old Berber carpet, poorly painted dirty white walls, and not much else.

We pulled up the carpet, revealing the original hardwood floors:

And then we pulled up all the nails and staples and tack boards that had held the carpet in place:

And let me be clear: for all of this, when I say "we," I mean "the DDH."

Then he sanded:

You can see the belt sander he used in the bottom center
of the picture.

And sanded:

And sanded, all with his little belt sander and, in the corners and along the edges, by hand.

That was the longest and worst part, by far.

Then came the stain, three coats:

And the polyurethane:

We added to the baseboards to cover up a gap between the floorboards and the wall, and installed the little metal piece that seques the carpet in the hall into the room:

Now we were ready to paint!

But to see that, you'll have to wait for Part II.

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

I am relaxed.

I would say huzzah for election day because now all the obnoxious political backbiting all over the internets will stop, but who am I kidding? That nonsense never stops.

T-Rex is head down and facing the correct direction, but otherwise shows no inclination to leave his comfy home anytime soon. Less than a week until the due date! We'll see how things play out.

The nursery is all done except for one last decoration project. I'll do a nifty reveal post soon. Maybe.

I still need to clean out my car and install the carseat in one car or another. But at least we have the carseat now, which we didn't before Friday.

I am super stoked to see the diaper bag Jessi made for him. It should be in the mail tomorrow, gah! (Also, if you like fun crafty stuff, you should definitely be following her blog.)

The DDH picked out some freezer-cooking recipes and we bought ingredients yesterday. I have a lot of cooking and chopping and labeling in my future, if T-Rex cooperates. But it will be good to have the freezer stocked.

I have a To Do list and would like to check everything off it, but there's nothing I really feel compelled to do anymore. Things will get done, or they won't, and who really cares? Other than installing the car seat. But really, the DDH can do that after T-Rex is born and before he comes home, if necessary.

Hmm. I should probably clean the rabbit's cage, too. Because heaven knows no one else will do it for me, which means it likely won't be done again until a couple weeks after T-Rex arrives, and ewww. Poor Meg.

Gratuitous Rabbit Picture.
What else? I don't know. I am content to wait, though I don't like uncertainty and it would be nice to have a definitive date and time to put on the schedule. In the meantime, I'm trying to enjoy these last few days of just me, the DDH, and the dogs. Of life without diaper changes and car seats and scheduling everything around a kiddo or three. I look forward to meeting T-Rex, but I'm not really in any rush.

I feel like I'll jinx it by saying work has been going better, but it has. It helps to know that I don't have more than two weeks left here. It's the only thing that threatens this relaxed and peaceful calm I've been feeling, though.

Also, and this is very important: We've eaten all the Halloween candy and I really shouldn't replace it with Christmas candy right away, but I want to. Hmph.

Monday, November 5, 2012

I am morbid, but I come by it honestly.

One of my favorite possessions is a little book my grandma gave me this summer. A friend had given it to her, and Grandma thought I might like it to use with T-Rex, or at least find it interesting.

I do plan to use it with T-Rex (though because of the book's age and condition, it will, as Mom says, "be one you read to him, not one he gets to read"), but it is fascinating in and of itself.

Prayers for Little Ones
The book is called Prayers for Little Ones (Gebete fuer die Kleinen = Prayers for the small), and it was published in 1909 by the Lutheran Book Concern of Columbus, Ohio.

Little Prayer Book for Children

"Ask, and so it will be given to you all."
(Did you know that both the command "Ask"
and the you are plural in that verse?)
It categorizes prayers by time of day and topic, beginning with Morning Prayers, moving through the day to Evening Prayers, and hitting several other topics.
Morning Prayers
Upon Getting Up
The Holy Father (Lord's Prayer) and the Creed
(I guess this indicates you should say them, since they're not printed.)
Most of the topics are the sort of thing you'd expect to see in a kids' prayer book: table prayers, prayers for the end of the week, prayers for school and studies and for church.

 The table prayers section includes prayers for before and after eating:

Table Prayers
Before the Meal
Bless, Father, this food
For our nourishment and your praise. Amen.
The second of those eating prayers may be familiar to many of you: "Come, Lord Jesus, be our guest...." The second line here translates to, "And bless, what you have given us. Amen," which is the same sentiment as the usual English line "And let these gifts to us be blest."

As I paged through the book, however, one prayer caught my eye:

Upon the Pre-commitment of a Corpse
Lord, teach us to remember that we must die,
that we might become wise. (Psalm 90:12)
As you can see, the book uses an old-fashioned sort of print, and sometimes it's hard to make out the words. So at first I thought I had misread that word: Leiche.

Because I was pretty sure I knew what Leiche means.

Leiche means corpse.

But I read through the title again: Beim Voruebergeben an einer Leiche. By the...pre-over-giving?...of a corpse. Uebergeben means, literally, give over, i.e. commit. Vor- is the prefix pre-.

So. Here was a prayer to say before committing (resigning? surrendering? this isn't a term we use much these days in English) a corpse. A prayer, basically, before a funeral.

In a children's book.

Let's just pause for a moment to reflect on the fact that, a mere hundred-and-three years ago, we were routinely teaching children prayers to say for dead people. Prayers that would probably be recited while you sat up all night with the corpse in your living room, the corpse washed and clothed by family members and laid out before it would be collected in the morning, taken to the church and then the graveyard.

In some parts of the world, corpses are still a part of every child's life.

I've mentioned before that I'm something of a worrier, and there's plenty I fret about with T-Rex even now, before he's even born. But then there's this prayer, beim Voruebergeben an einer Leiche.

I need to remember that kids are tough, and resilient, and if children can survive hanging out with dead bodies, they can probably survive the occasional diet soda or Disney movie.

I look forward to reading these German prayers to T-Rex, to teaching him a bit of Deutsch. At some point, we'll probably even say the prayer beim Voruebergeben an einer Leiche. Because people are born, and people die, and though we've sanitzed and sterilized and distanced ourselves from the entire process, there's really no hiding death from anyone.