Thursday, March 26, 2009

Hello, Crazyness

I've finally hit the point in my pregnancy when my hormone-addled brain is causing me to do strange things. Yesterday, after pouring out some balsamic vinegar for my lunch, I wiped a drop of vinegar off the bottle and tasted it. It was delicious. I took a swing from the bottle. Awesome. After my lunch, I poured some of the vinegar into a sauce dish and brought it with me to sip on as I read some blogs. It was the most delicious thing. I know balsamic vinegar doesn't normally taste like that, but I just couldn't resist drinking it.

After drinking the vinegar, I sent a message to R asking him to stop by CostPlus on his way some from work and pick me up some Vegemite (as I was clearly craving something pungent and savory). He couldn't find the store (they were using a different name), so he wound up stopping at several grocery stores on the way home. No luck on the Vegemite front, though he did find a jar of Captain Toady's Tartar Sauce, something he has been searching for the entire time I've known him, so it wasn't a total loss. Still, I think every guy needs a sent-out-on-a-crazy-errand-by-their-pregnant-wife story. At least it wasn't 2 am Chinese food (yet).

Still, all those events seem somewhat normal compared to my final anecdote. Last night, I had a rather frustrating dream. R and I were getting some food in a food court. He bought a milk shake. I noticed that the shop had rose-flavored ice cream, so I wanted to try a sample. At first, the people behind the counter were very busy. Then, there was a woman manning the register who didn't speak English. I asked her in Spanish, but for some reason she thought I wanted a sample of Gatorade. "What don't you understand about 'quiero probar el helado de rosas?" I said, to no avail. After that, the staff became rude and surly and just started blowing me off. I eventually got so frustrated that I loudly berated their customer service and threw a burrito at them in frustration. Eventually, the manager came out, smoking the stub of a cigar. He proceeded to tell me a long story that didn't really relate to the situation at hand. I got so frustrated that I showed them the timestamp on R's receipt, proving that I had been trying to get the sample for an hour. Finally, they gave me the sample... and it was not very good tasting. I started to tear up in the dream, only to wake up and find myself actually crying uncontrollably. Scared the pants off of R, who was wondering if there was something wrong, as he'd never seen me cry like that before.

Still, as my sister-in-law said, at least I'm not throwing things and barricading myself in the bathroom yet.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009


Had you asked me yesterday morning, I would have sworn that the cat was in cahoots with the baby. Several times during the night it woke us up with bizarre yowling. The first time, after a few minutes, I poked my head outside to see if something was wrong, only to be greeted with the usual "Murrrow?" We did our best to ignore subsequent noises, not wanting to encourage the behavior, but still was fleeting.

As it turns out, the cat was just ravenously hungry. She completely blocked the other cat from the food dish after I filled it, and even went back for seconds. I think she might have had a little cold, as she seemed to have gone off her feed the last few days, which had me rather worried (this is the cat that had to be force-fed and racked up several hundred in vet bills last year).

Monday morning's feast also meant that Tuesday night we didn't have a starving cat, and so were able to get a night of uninterrupted sleep. Seeing as we only have 6 more months until regular sleep disturbances, we're doing our best to sleep well while we can.

Saturday, March 21, 2009


Having had several Pier 1 gift cards sitting in my wallet for a long while, I finally decided to go into the store recently and see what they might have that wasn't too gaudy and awful (or a candle). I wound up purchasing a lovely decorative vase. It was black, with a light blue silhouette of a couple of birds sitting on a branch. I had finally gotten around to taking it out of the bag this afternoon, when I dropped the dang thing. It fell all of three feet onto the carpeted floor, but nevertheless shattered rather fantastically. As disappointing as that was (it was a rather nice looking vase), I'm glad that I did it, rather than the cats or the baby. That thing was clearly not long for this world. Shoddy Peruvian craftsmanship.

Friday, March 20, 2009

What has been going on in my kitchen

Thanks to my lack of morning sickness, cooking has continued unabated in the A&R household. My mom couldn't keep anything down, let alone cook anything, for about 5 months, followed by a month of exclusive quesadilla consumption. So, needless to say, I consider myself fairly fortunate.

I started the week with one of our favorite occasional treats, beer can chicken. Lucky for me, an empty can of flavored seltzer water filled with herbs, water, and a little splash of cooking wine stands in nicely for the actual beer can, as I would have hated to pour beer down the sink to make the can a little less full.

Part of the reason I roasted the chicken (aside from a strong desire to make stock) was that I wanted to try making spicy cabbage and chicken stir-fry with some of the remaining meat. R's recipe sense was tingling when he saw this recipe, and, indeed, it wasn't quite as good as I was hoping for. It wasn't bad, per se, but it wasn't really that good either. Very mild flavors, not at all helped by the fact that we've developed a high spice tolerance. It was a little better for lunch the next day, but still not something I'm planning on making again.

To make up for always making recipes that only I really like (if even that), I followed up the stir-fry with baked ziti, roughly based on this recipe. Really, though, once you know the basics (meat + sauce + pasta + cheese), it is a pretty flexible dish. It is basically deconstructed lasagna. I wound up using Swiss, cheddar, and Romano cheese (as those were all we had in the house) and adding a little layer of sour cream in the middle of all the pasta. The final dish was delicious, though I will be leaving the sour cream out next time.

Tonight, we try something very new, something R has been looking forward to ever since he sent me this link. Tonight, we make Buffalo chicken wings. It seems simple and delicious, so I think it should be a wild success. I'm very glad for my deep fryer at this moment. Wish me luck!

Edited (9:55pm): Oh, man. The chicken wings were awesome. I wound up cleaning up every last bit of Buffalo sauce from the plate with my finger.

Also, I forgot to tell you about the hash. One of my favorite blog columns, Unexplained Bacon, wrote a how-to article about hash. The, uh, food. Not the drug. Anyway, I decided to give it a shot for breakfast this morning and wound up making a fairly tasty roast chicken hash. The one lesson to take away from it? Don't coarsely dice the potatoes, as it makes cooking take a bit longer than it should (plus it decreases the crispy outside to soft inside ratio in an unfavorable manner).

Sunday, March 15, 2009


A slightly belated happy Pi Day to all! By the way, I know it isn't the prettiest looking pie around, but this rustic pear custard pie is really delicious and easy to make. I happened to have picked up a couple of pears at the supermarket, so I wound up having all the ingredients to make it in the cupboard (and I didn't even have to dig out the food processor to make the crust).

Sunday, March 08, 2009

Wanted: Teen pregnancy clothes

Okay, so maybe I don't really want super-low rise skinny maternity pants, but the maternity clothes I've seen so far are mostly very stodgy. I know there are more over 40 women getting pregnant, but the average age for a first pregnancy is still mid-20s. This means we don't just want trousers.

In summary, up yours, Target. Your sucky maternity selection means I'm going to be buying most of my new wardrobe at Old Navy, where there is lots of selection and the clothes are actually cool looking.

Wednesday, March 04, 2009

And now for the baby pictures

Okay, so I suppose this would technically be a fetus picture. Whatever. It's about 9 weeks old, and is supposed to be born on October 1st (though, knowing my family's tendency toward 10-month first pregnancies, I'm doubting that will happen). R's brother said we'd be able to see a shrimp, but the nurse said that it is now to the stage that looks like a gummi bear. It has also been referred to as the size of a peanut (medical assistant) and a dog biscuit (R).

I also need to start hitting the treadmill daily. Apparently you're only supposed to gain about 5 pounds in the first trimester but, two months along, I've already gained 10. Whoops.

On a side note, I nearly forgot to remove my name and medical record number from the photo. Phew! Quick save.

Tuesday, March 03, 2009

The pudge

I know I'm pregnant, but I'm becoming slightly paranoid about getting fat. Sure, I'm supposed to gain weight, but not too much weight. Anything extra you have to work of afterwards. In truth, I think my biggest fear is winding up looking like my grandmother and getting Type II diabetes. I'm shaped the same way she was when she was younger, so I'm probably inclined that way.

This has all been brought on by my increased gut size. I think it will be better when my belly actually looks like a pregnant belly, rather than food storage. R thinks I'm being paranoid, and that I'm not actually eating as much more than normal as I think I am. He pointed out that I'm not eating all the time, so I'm not on course to obesity. He's probably right. I'm just eating a morning snack and sometimes an extra piece of fruit at lunch. I just feel extra hungry.

This morning, however, my "fat" jeans (I accidentally bought them a size to large on e-bay) feel rather tight around the belly. Admittedly, they're fresh from the dryer and this is the first time I've had clean jeans in almost a month, so I'm used to them being somewhat stretched out. Still, I've had to unbutton the top button to be able to sit comfortably at work. Looks like I'll be shopping for comfy pants this afternoon.