Finding calm in the chaos

Finding calm in the chaos

Sunday, March 30, 2008

Dazed and confused

Schatzi was trying to take a rawhide roll outside (probably to bury it...naughty dog that she is), but it got caught in the dog door. She stopped for a minute, dazed from the sudden stop in her momentum, and then sat back, confused about what had just happened. Joe shot a picture of her sorry situation before rescuing her rawhide and making Schatzi a happier dog.

Friday, March 28, 2008

Don't tell me that...

As a GI nurse practitioner, I see a lot of people whose main complaint is bloating. For some reason, their favorite way to describe their level of distention is to compare it to pregnancy. As in the skinny little 20 year old who told me, "I'm so bloated...I look like I'm 4 months pregnant." Or the middle-aged woman who said, "I feel so I'm 8 months pregnant."

During these conversations, I try to keep a straight face. I try to be understanding. I try to retain my composure. But, No, you don't look 4 months pregnant. No, you don't feel like you're 8 months pregnant. And, don't even think about using this simile if you are a man. Period.

This is what 8 months pregnant looks like.

And, no amount of bloating can compare to what 8 months pregnant feels like. Trust me. You don't want to get me started. Yes, if you are a woman who has borne children, you have some idea, but let's face it...memories get hazy. You tend to gloss over the discomforts of pregnancy (which is why women do this whole pregnancy thing more than once).

And, if you are a man, you have no idea. Sorry. You can't understand until you go through it. So, don't even try to tell me you feel like you're pregnant. Pregnancy is a whole lot worse than some gas and bloating. And, when I share a good-natured chuckle, don't insist that you DO know. You are a man. Your body will never stretch to these proportions as you experience acid reflux, constipation, gas, bloating, abdominal pain, round ligament twinges, back pain, swollen feet and ankles...oh, too got me started!

Come on, people.

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

A bluegrass Easter


We spent Easter Sunday at the annual Poxleitner Easter dinner. After eating like champs, there was an Easter egg hunt, a lively game of croquet (the rules became quite complicated after a bit), and some live music. On the clip, you can see Joe strumming the banjo (which he only plays when he is in Lewiston...but I thought he did a great job), Steve on the washtub bass that Joe built (and a musician friend helped tweak), and Fred on the mandolin.


Joe, the cogs, and I left Idaho Falls after work on Thursday and began our long trek up north to celebrate Easter. We arrived at Team Eddys' just after midnight and were awoken early Friday morning by Noah. We got him a wooden train set, since he was so enamoured with the fun (but expensive) Thomas the Train set at Barnes and Nobles while he was here.

Sweet girl (update)

Well, it turns out there was a mix up with my lab results and my glucose test was normal (one point within normal, but still normal). 3 hour test in my future! However, I have felt so much better on the low carb diet, I can't believe it! So, I'm going to be a little more lenient with my carbs (I was eating 20-30g of carbs a meal...try'll dream about banana nut muffins!), but still try to limit them.

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Childbirth classes

I've been waiting to post about our childbirth classes because I wanted to post a picture of Joe wearing the empathy belly. Alas, it is not meant to be. We have a print of the picture at our house that you are more than welcome to see, but our scanner is buried in a pile of stuff to sort/donate/trash since we started working on the no pics.

Our class was actually pretty helpful and made me feel better about the whole birthing process. We practiced some breathing and relaxation and Joe was an amazing coach. Our teacher was impressed with how relaxed I was able to get, even with a clothespin stuck to my finger (it was supposed to simulate a contraction...something makes me think the actual contraction will be a lot more annoying). Little does she know we practice deep breathing while Joe massages my back and legs every night...that's why we're pros!

Not just looking sweet...

Yes, gentle readers, people have told me that I am sweet girl. Little did they know that I am LITERALLY sweet.

I had my one hour glucose tolerance test on Monday (a little behind schedule at almost 31 weeks, but oh, well) and it was abnormal (as in high). So, now I have to have the 3 hour test to check for gestational diabetes next Friday.

So, right now, my fabulous husband has been researching what a gestational diabetic diet consists of and has been helping with meal preparation. I have also restarted walking and lifting some light free weights to help increase my insulin sensitivity. All this in the effort to prevent having a baby who is too big to fit out...

Wish me luck!

Friday, March 14, 2008

7 Random Things

I got "tagged" by my friend, Deanna.

Here are the rules...
1. Link to your tagger and post these rules on your blog.
2. Share 7 facts about yourself on your blog, some random, some weird.
3. Tag 7 people at the end of your post by leaving their names as well as links to their blogs.
4. Let them know they are tagged by leaving a comment on their blog.

1. I really, really like to tweeze my eyebrows...or even my leg hair. In high school, when I used to fight with my boyfriends, I would tweeze and it would be such a stress reliever. Of course, this has changed since I got pregnant because who has energy for this?? And, of course, I *never, ever* get mad at my darling husband. :)

2. LOVE sleep. After having a crappy night's sleep previously due to back and hip pain, I loaded up on Tylenol and Benadryl last night and only woke up 3 times. My NP friend says my baby is going to be born with horns or something because I take so many medications, but I say it's better than having a psychotic pregnant woman roaming the earth.

3. I haven't really felt pretty since I got pregnant...I feel fat, hungry, hormonal, and puffy. But yesterday helped. I got my hair highlighted, cut, and the wonderful woman straightened it for me, so I no longer feel like a shaggy dog. I also broke down and bought some bigger shoes (flats...I hate flats, but my back loves them). And, my mom-friend, LeAnne, spoiled me with some new maternity shirts and a nightie!

4. So, my office manager's son and daughter-in-law recently had a little girl and brought her into the office for show and tell. All the nurses said, "Doesn't that just make you excited to have your own?" I said, "Oh, yeah", but secretly was thinking, "No, not really. She looks like a regular newborn." Now, when I saw the new puppy at Joe's office, I instantly wanted to go out and buy a puppy. Still not convinced this line of thinking will make me a bad mother.

5. Whenever I eat a lollipop, I'm always determined to not bite it. Then I bite it.

6. I wish I were about 6 inches taller. Really. Then it wouldn't matter that I'm gaining so much weight...well, it wouldn't matter as much. And, maybe I wouldn't have cankles right now

7. My dog, Schatzi, talks to me every day when I get home. And, if you talk back to her, she'll keep the "conversation" going. (No, I'm not crazy. She's not actually talking like a person...she yodels like a Brittany. Although a few nights ago, when I only got 3 hours of sleep, her yodels started to sound like words....hhhhmmm.)

Do I know 7 bloggers to tag? Most of the blogs I peruse are ones Deanna also peruses and has subsequently tagged...I'll do my best.

Rae, my fun friend from nursing school who is an awesome nurse, has a funny husband, and a great dog. She's always up for an adventure!
Mandy C. , my friend who used to live in Idaho Falls and then moved away right after we moved here (ok, ok...I can take the hint! :)
Elizabeth, my college roomie in the dorms
Laura, Amy's roomie in Mexico who became my friend (because she loves animals, her mom is a great cook, and is an all around nice person), too.
Gus and Jen, met them through Amy's med school. They're new parents so I read their blog frequently to get a peek into what my life will soon be like. Jen even sent me a copy of her birth plan!
Amy, my sista...ok, I know Deanna tagged Kevin, but you could post a random blog post, too and just not tag anyone, ok?

and...Mandy Meyers, you need to get a blog. You, too, Anne!

Thursday, March 13, 2008

a bone to pick

I like to give the cogs bones to chew on, but am careful never to give them cooked bones because they can splinter easily and cause problems. So, we typically will pick up a package of bones from the meat department and dole out those raw bones to our ever grateful dogs.

Last night, Schatzi was chewing on one of those raw bones and started waving her head around, pawing at her face, and gagging. She ran in and out of the dog door several times before we could get her to jump on the bed so we could see what was going on. She wouldn't let us touch her at first, but finally, I got her to open her mouth and saw the problem: a bone shard was wedged between her teeth, across the roof of her mouth.

I tried to pry it out a few times and, of course, Schatzi would freak out in between attempts, but that thing was wedged in there. Finally, just when I was thinking we'd have to call the vet, I was able to wedge my finger in there and pop it out.

After that, she laid on the bed and just looked sheepish. She wouldn't even move to the foot of the bed, but just laid next to my lap.

Not sure I'm giving them raw bones any more. Ever. Again.

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

La Leche League

Last night, I went to a LLL meeting to get some help with breastfeeding. Overall, it was a fun experience. I met a lot of nice women who were very knowledgeable about breastfeeding and willing to offer support (including an invitation to call at 2am when your baby is crying and you can't get it to latch!).

Have you been to a LLL meeting or interacted with anyone from this group, though? In general, they tend to have a very natural view about childbirth and childrearing and since I was the only first-time pregnant woman at the meeting, everyone had a lot of unsolicited advice about my birth experience. I started to realize there was a sort of cultural divide when I mentioned I wished I could deliver at a birthing center with a midwife, but since there's no birthing center and only one midwife in Idaho Falls, I was planning to have a hospital delivery. Several "interesting" points were shared:

1. There a quite a few midwives in the area. (I guess I should have clarified I really only count NURSE midwives as midwives).
2. Many women there had had home births and I would likely be disappointed with my hospital birth experience.
3. One woman felt I wouldn't be able to have a natural childbirth in the hospital "because labor is just too intense" and I hadn't taken any Bradley method classes. (Joe and I are planning to take an 8 hour class in childbirth this Saturday, though).

What is my "birth plan"?
Objective: Get the baby out safely. However. Whenever.

In an ideal world:
1. Try to labor at home as long as possible so I don't feel rushed into any extra interventions.
2. Try to avoid a C-section if possible. (Not looking forward to the post-op recovery or the expense!)
3. Try to avoid an epidural if possible. (I'm not against modern methods of pain control, but I had a spinal headache once and honestly think I would rather have labor pains...but, then again, what do I know? I haven't done this before).

But, again...if things don't go according to plan, refer to the objective.

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Tricks class

Last night, both of our dogs "graduated" from their tricks class. I try to take them to a couple of classes a year (or more, if our schedules can swing it), so they can interact with other dogs, learn new things...and it makes us better owners because we spend time training them every day so we don't look like putzes at the next class. I say "graduated" because it's a sort of "everyone gets an A" class.

Tricks is an advanced class, so our dogs participated in this class with a guide dog and an agility dog who put them both to shame.

Schatzi is a quick learner and LOVED tricks class. She loves jumping, barking, and getting wound up on her own, so what better than a class where she gets rewarded for these things? She learns so quickly and can actually focus a bit more as she gets older. Last night, Joe had her heeling off leash, jumping through hoops, crawling, begging, playing dead, and rolling over. She can also jump up to touch your hand (although sometimes she just does this for kicks, even when you don't want her to).

Doc is...well, he's Doc. He gets overwhelmed with new situations and can't focus enough to remember what he is doing. But, I'm so proud of him. After 2 weeks of working with him to crawl under a table, he finally figured it out. He can jump obstacles at home, but can't at dog class. He can do figure eights through your legs as you're walking (albeit SLOWLY), play dead, and crawl. I had to cut out some of his curriculum because he just learns so SLOWLY and it takes him FOREVER to learn anything. But, he did learn! And, our teacher said he was doing a great job. (She remembers that it took us a couple months of training AND private lessons to even get him to sit).

It was the first time Joe and I have ever taken both dogs to class at the same time and we had a lot of fun. Usually, each doggie-owner dyad is on their own, but it was nice to have my husband there to help when it was difficult to get down on the ground to persuade Doc to crawl under tables or jump over my legs.

Monday, March 10, 2008


After re-reading a few of my recent blog entries, I can see where it seems like I have been lamenting my large size. I want to clarify: I am more astonished and amazed at how much my body can grow and change in such a short period of time. Yes, there is a part of me that wishes I were a skinny, cute pregnant lady. Before I got pregnant, I swore I would only gain the prescribed amount of weight, exercise daily, and eat a healthy diet. Well, folks, that ship has sailed. I am eating fairly healthily, but the weight keeps on coming and I certainly don't feel like doing much exercise.

So, after a few weeks of wearing too tight maternity pants and shirts that barely cover my large bump of a baby, I have embraced my gigantic nature and busted out the last tub of maternity clothes. I remember, in my first trimester, sorting through Amy and Deanna's maternity clothes and sharing a laugh with Joe as I placed a bra on my head (the cup was big enough to wear as a hat), swearing, "I'll never be big enough to need this." Well, I'm eating those words as I wear that bra, those shirts, those pants that I couldn't imagine ever filling out.

I am huge...HUGE! And, there's still 10 weeks left to grow. So, I spent last night ironing all of my "new" maternity clothes, a few random thoughts went through my head:

1. What are the advantages of being a HUGE mama to be? Well, none really. But, I just think about all my fat making good breastmilk for this baby and that helps...a little.

2. Why do they make maternity clothes that need to be ironed at all? Ironing has never been this pregnant woman's idea of fun ever. Thanks, but my swollen ankles and feet have better things to be doing than standing on the cement floor of my laundry room for an hour and half as I iron shirts and slacks (a foot rub and a pedicure sound much better!)!.

3. I'm going through a lightheaded/fainting stage. Neither my doctor, nor my med student sister seem to be overly concerned about it, but it's annoying and a little unsettling. I've always been a fainter (how did I make it through nursing school??), but this is ridiculous!

4. Back to my HUGE size. I'm not sleeping so well because I have to keep reshifting my pillows to better support my large body. Maybe it's time to kick the dogs out of the bed.

More random ramblings later...

Saturday, March 08, 2008

What NOT to say to your pregnant wife

Jen: (on the phone to a friend) Yeah, I can't really believe how much weight I've gained. 24lbs in 9 weeks! It's pretty crazy. I'm not even going overboard with my eating...

Joe: I couldn't be happier if she were my 4-H project!

(FYI: Joe used to raise 4-H hogs. For those of you who have never raised livestock before, the goal is to get the fastest weight gain for the cheapest amount of feed before fair time. They start with a little piglet that weighs about 50lbs and gains about 200lbs in 100 days. Can you see why I was less than pleased with this comment??)

How have we been spending our evenings lately?

We've been so lonely for Team Eddy since they left, we have decided to fill our time by finishing off our big living room project. It started in December with my handy Kaufman brothers replacing the baseboards and installing a chair rail.

BEFORE: Off-white walls, white molding, a beige rug and beige hallway runner made for a bland looking room.

AFTER: A coat of paint to the "wainscotting", a colorful rug, and a contrasting hallway runner punch up the room. We're not done entirely, but we're getting there! Filling nail holes, taping/masking, and then painting was no easy feat with a huge 7 month pregnant belly, but we did it...although, really, Joe did most of the baseboard work since it's hard to bend over and my arms aren't quite long enough to really reach around the belly in the position.

Thursday, March 06, 2008

Bustin' at the seams

I couldn't imagine my body getting any bigger, but every day it continues to surprise me. This weekend, I was saddened to find my first stretchmarks on my hips. Tuesday, I had my 29 week check and found that I'd gained 24lbs in the last 9 weeks. And, this morning, several new stretchmarks appeared in a few choice places. Yep, folks, I'm bursting at the seams. Apparently the baby weighs two and a half pounds now (although I tell people our baby weighs 24 lbs and that is why its mother is so huge!) and is growing a rapid rate. My wise sister, Amy, says it's gaining half a pound a week.

But, I've been being more active and actually am fairly comfortable with this large belly (although my feet hurt at the end of the day). We've been painting our living room (pictures to come!), which involves a lot of squatting and quad isometrics; I've been climbing the stairs; and have remade my resolution to walk the dogs daily. I guess that's all I can do. 11 more weeks to go. Hopefully, I won't gain another 24lbs in the NEXT 9 weeks!!

Tuesday, March 04, 2008

Screamin' deals

We took a day trip to Jackson, WY on Saturday for a "date". Joe had been there recently for work and wanted to check out a thrift shop that sold a lot of cross-country ski equipment and I was excited about getting out of Idaho Falls and trying some good non-chain restaurant food in a different city (yes, my life revolves around eating).

We got some screamin' deals at the thrift shop:
1. Bought a bassinet for those early newborn weeks. I priced new ones at $100+ and bought this sturdy, used one for $5. Still need to find a mattress, though...
2. A Thomas the Train suitcase for Noah, Thomas's biggest fan.
3. A brand new range bag for Joe (to take to the rifle range).
4. A baby snow suit for $4.
5. Two pairs of cross-country ski boots for Joe for $10.
6. A new Shel Silverstein book for $1.

Whoo hoo!