Pregnancy: Food Edition

I have been pregnant for approximately 220 days and I have 60 days to go. Over the last 220 days I have eaten a lot of food and broken a few pregnancy-food rules along the way. I mean, as soon as they tell you that you CANNOT eat something it’s ALL you want, amirite?

In the early weeks, I was obsessed with a certain fat-rich, healthy, green, tree growing fruit that starts with the letter “a” and ends with “o”. I ate a lot of it mixed with chickpeas and feta. I also wanted it with/on everything — burgers, eggs, salmon. There’s a certain kind of Mexican dip primarily made of this stuff that I LOVED and wanted it all the time. Now the idea of it makes me gag. I hope this goes away once the baby is born because I used to really love that fruit.

And that isn’t the only healthy thing to leave my diet. I have never been a health-nut, but before pregnancy I ate a lot of raw vegetables. Carrots, bell peppers, broccoli, etc…I found them to be quite tasty with some dressing or hummus to dip them in (or just by themselves…I don’t need to dress them up). I also loved fruit: blueberries, grapes, strawberries, peaches, pineapples, mangoes, bananas, you name it. Well, that’s changed. The previously mentioned food isn’t the only thing I’ve abandoned.

Nope.

Carrots taste like dirt. Blueberries taste like they’re fermenting. Peaches and grapes cause acid reflux (which everything does so…that’s annoying). Fruits and veggies have to sneak their way into my diet. None of what I used to love tastes as good as a McDonald’s Hot & Spicy McChicken sandwich loaded with mayonnaise with a small fry and a Sweet Tea on the side (because I’m totally breaking that no caffeine rule).

Don’t get me wrong, I do eat some veggies — I’m now obsessed with stir fry. Broccoli, cauliflower, bell peppers, baby corn, water chestnuts…and potatoes (it isn’t as good if there aren’t potatoes).

The McDonald’s cravings started right after I abandoned that healthy fatty food. I would go everyday for lunch and get two Hot & Spicy McChicken sandwiches (no fries, no Sweet Tea — this is before I let myself break the caffeine rule). Then I started mixing it up with one H&S and a McDouble. Some days I’d just have a McDouble. It went on for a couple of months. This was also around the time that I would go to McDonald’s, eat on the way back to work, and then take a nap in my car.

Occasionally I’d mix it up with other fast food options. I had a brief love affair with Jack in the Box’s chicken strips, sometimes I’d go to Panda Express, but mainly it was McDonald’s. There were a few days before it got too hot and after the first trimester exhaustion that I’d walk (ha…I drove) to a couple of restaurants across the street. That’s when I learned that I like tomatoes — BLTs, especially — and would eat more chicken strips.

All of this fast food eating was before I decided that leaving for lunch was stupid and instead I could just walk to the cafe in the library. This is also around the time that I started having caffeine (nowhere near what I used to have and not more than is recommended, calm down!). The cafe in our library has BLTs, they have muffins, they have cookies, they have coffee, they have just about anything a pregnant woman could want…well, except for the one (two) truly weird thing(s) I’ve started eating over the last couple of months: Cool Ranch Doritos and chocolate covered pretzels (specifically the Synder’s ones).

Together. (And a Caffeine-Free Diet Coke with a splash of regular Diet Coke.)

These are two foods I didn’t have a lot of before being pregnant. Of course, that’s because I didn’t want to become obese so I wouldn’t let myself buy them. But now…oh my. I need them. Separately is OK, but together is ideal.

Jesse would tell you I’ve craved a lot of other things…like chocolate cake, biscuits & gravy, griddled bread pudding, or TUMS, but I don’t remember these things.

Twitter Meltdown

The other food issue is (of course) raging heartburn. It doesn’t matter what I eat, it’s going to be there. I recently had a Twitter meltdown (see above) over it because all the foods that don’t “cause” heartburn are the same foods that do cause gas (and not the butt toot kind, the what in the world is happening in my chest kind). But SERIOUSLY how in the world am I supposed to sleep on my left side AND be propped up at an angle? That isn’t comfortable! It’s all just crap, but at least TUMS come in yummy flavors.

So food…yeah. It’s been a fun and fascinating 220 days.

August Recap

August started with a trip to Barnes & Noble where the Baby Beluga had her first photo with a couple Disney princesses…not that she’ll remember it.

Elsa, Anna, and I can't remember the dude character's name.

I continued August with lots of graphic novels and picture books (plus at least two novels completed and many started but not finished). Darn pregnancy distractions.

We made progress on the Beluga’s room. We turned an old chair into a rocker, painted a bookshelf, and hung some curtains.

We ate at Liberty Market A LOT — the Griddled Bread Pudding is DELICIOUS.

Griddled Bread Pudding

I was interviewed for an article about Ken Follett, but I’m pretty sure my interview went unused. It was still pretty cool to be interviewed simply because I wrote a review a few years ago (it also happens to be my most popular review on Goodreads).  I’m still pretty stoked about the last book in the Century Trilogy coming out soon and I just might finish this one!

We’ve got 74 days to go before the estimated arrival date of our little Baby Beluga…really not a lot of time. Not a lot at all.

Have a happy September!

Pregnancy: Reading (Slump) Edition

I was already in the middle of a bit of a reading slump when I found out we had a bundle o’ joy arriving later in the year.  It hasn’t really let up.  This year is really shaping up into The Year I Abandoned Lots of Books and Read Many Books with Pictures.

Unread Books.
I made it to Chapter 8 in the Flavia de Luce book! (The others were all returned…unread.)

If a book doesn’t totally grab me in the first few pages, it gets tossed aside. If I sit the book down somewhere out of sight, it is rarely picked up again. If a book uses big words or opens with a massive paragraph, I quickly put it back down. If a book doesn’t have pictures, it will likely remain unfinished for a long time.

Am I allowed to blame pregnancy for this? Or is this just not my year?

Most of the books I’ve read since March are graphic novels and picture books. I’m having the toughest time focusing on anything that requires a lot of thought. Lately, watching my belly move, playing Candy Crush, thinking about the nursery, and sleeping have been really good distractions from the written word.

The crazy thing: it isn’t like I haven’t read ANYTHING. I know I still read more than your average person, but I still feel like a bad reader. I know I shouldn’t. Slumps happen. Sometimes books just don’t grab you. Sometimes everything you pick up sounds exactly like all of the other books you’ve read. Sometimes it just isn’t the right time to read that book. And sometimes it just isn’t a good book.

I want to read them. I do.
At least four of these have bookmarks in them and three of them I’ve read (at least) the first two pages.

I still keep checking out massive amounts of books from the library that I am genuinely interested in reading, but by the time they make it home I just don’t get to them. Then there are all of the advance copies that keep rolling in and I want to devour all of them…but instead I read a couple of pages, think this is good, and then don’t read any further.

While I will never abandon reading entirely (that’s just a ridiculous thought), I guess I’ll have to come to terms with the fact that I’m just not the reader I once was. Or 2014 is just an off-year.  Or…or…something.

July Recap

Umm…July is over already?! AND THIS HAPPENED like THREE to FOUR days ago?!

I am not prepared for August and I’m struggling to remember what happened in July…let’s see:

1. We started registering for baby gear.

2. Jesse made this happen:

Dresser DIY
Before
Dresser DIY #2
After

3. Jesse also painted the baby’s room and put the crib together AND swapped out the blinds AND hung curtains. Jesse was VERY busy in July. (I helped paint the dresser… :-/ )

4. I got a haircut.

Hair...or Bump.
See the difference between Week 21 and 23. That’s a lot of inches gone!

5. We got into our pool…like…at least twice.

6. I read a book without pictures: The Queen of the Tearling by Erika Johansen — as good as everyone kept saying it was. While it is the first in a series, it still felt like it had a conclusion (which I appreciated).

7. I read a lot of books with pictures.

8. The Ply-o-saurus tried to eat the beluga on his last day at the library.

Ser Chomps-a-lot is HUNGRY.

9. And that’s the end of July…

 

 

Pregnancy: Dreams Edition

Over the past 22 weeks I have had some crazy dreams. Apparently this is all normal because pregnant women have to pee in the middle of the night often and thus they wake up during the part of sleep where there are dreams (and thus they remember them more often). Or something like that. I am no exception…I do pee a lot. And I do remember some of my absolutely INSANE dreams. Below are a few of the crazy dreams I’ve experienced…

It all started innocent enough…me and baby boy were snuggling. The next thing you know, I’m being told that he has to get ready to go vote in some kind of election. “Vote?! He’s a baby! He can’t vote,” I tell them. “But he must,” they say. “He’s a BABY! He’s just going to vote the way I want him to.” No one seems bothered by this…. The next thing I know the baby is dressed in some kind of furry outfit — in my dream I’m pretty sure we were living on some Star Wars planet where this kind of furry-ness is normal.

A couple of nights later…I was in a shopping mall in Sydney, Australia (I could see the Opera House). The mall was HUGE, like 6-9 levels all built underground. The next thing you know there’s a terrorist attack and the mall starts to rumble to life because it’s actually a SPACESHIP built for just these kind of issues. If there’s an attack, the mall flies into space to protect the shoppers. We could have lived in space forever, apparently. I don’t know if we ever made it into space, but I do know the Australians were ready for it.

Back in high school?! Or maybe college? Either way it’s school. I’m pretty sure this is one that I’ve had multiple times because there were things happening in the dream that made reference to things “in the past”. Like missing a lot of my math class. In the most recent school dream I was researching a term paper and got distracted. Thus causing myself to be half an hour late for math. And I didn’t even have my math book.

The most confusing dream? There’s a special book room/store that transports you into a different dimension. I had to be back by midnight or else it would mess with my actual timeline. I kept looking for a copy of The Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss, but could only find various volumes of the graphic version of the novel (which doesn’t exist, right?). It felt like a and my boss was there and my niece had to change into her swimsuit. It was so weird, but this book dimension room was huge.

The dreams that are the scariest are those about Jesse leaving me. I wake up terrified he’s really gone every time I have these dreams of abandonment. In one he left me for 3 months. I mean, they’re always so real. Again, apparently these types of dreams are common during pregnancy because…well…it’s a scary time with lots of changes.

Then there are those dreams that shouldn’t be discussed publicly…hormones. You can’t control ‘em.

Did any of your pregnancy dreams stick with you?

"Good friends, good books and a sleepy conscience: this is the ideal life." – Mark Twain