May 29, 2007

the return of Handy Cat

Yesterday, while I watched, Dima spent most of the day installing hand-me-down Ikea cabinets in the basement. Josh and Carey (my brother and sister-in-law) had these cabinets left over when they remodeled their kitchen. And until now they've been taking up room in our already overcrowded garage. It's safe to say that both of us had moments of regret in taking them. They were dirty and in the way. And I know it made the mess in the garage feel all the more overwhelming. But now that they're installed in their new home and nearly playing a great new role, we're both very excited. Dima even said this morning they look like they were meant to be in their new location.

We plan on using them as our new linen closet/laundry center. And with a baby on the way and such a tiny linen closet upstairs this new setup is long overdue. We'll be able to store all our linens right outside the laundry room now and the counter is a great place to sort and fold laundry. Wow... how domestic that I'm so excited by this.

And, as you might suspect, the whole installation it was just too much for Melba to resist. She was quick on the scene as her alter-ego "Handy Cat." You can see her here, closely inspecting Dima's work. Thank goodness for her keen grasp of her crucial contribution. Otherwise I'm sure the cabinets would have been installed incorrectly. ;^)

May 14, 2007

evolutionary imperative

My friend Carmen says the lack of short term memory that is afflicting me is an evolutionary imperative that's designed to keep pregnant women close to the nest. Better to protect your fetus. Whatever... it's annoying. In short, and unfortunately in the most politically incorrect way, it makes me feel like a retard.

naming baby e

Since Dima and I decided to be surprised about Baby E.'s gender we're keeping the names we've decided on to ourselves as well. That doesn't mean it's not interesting to muse on what's popular these days or even in days gone by. I found this tool called the Baby Name Voyager.

Using an interesting visual display it tells you how popular certain names were in distant and recent history and when such names reigned or didn't reign supreme. Jennifer for example, which spiked right around the time that my parents named me, has since been on a drastic decline. And Dimitri (I had to spell it differently so it would register as a name in the tool.), which saw a drastic rise from zero in the early 80s and is now experiencing another surge.

Further investigation tells me that our chosen names for Baby E. are neither popular nor unpopular these days. How's that for cryptic?

May 13, 2007

shiny objects

Ordered this today from West Elm. The mobile for over Baby E.'s crib. Lovin' it! And even better... it was on sale with FREE shipping. Lovin' it even more!

More pictures of the room later. Dima finished painting over the weekend... four walls in Behr Asparagus (which looks more like perfectly ripened avocado flesh). He wouldn't let me help. Fumes. But with the white crib from Christina and Mike and the changing table from the Bobos, which we also painted crisp white, it's looking wonderful.

May 4, 2007

the final fabric

The final choices have been made. And I have to say I'm quite happy with them. Unfortunately Amy Butler's Lotus Wall Flower in Cherry bit the dust. I loved the combo but it was making finding complimentary fabrics impossible. Not that there aren't any out there. But every stripe I found and tried to buy just as quickly went out of stock. Sigh*

So on a trip to the local fabric store with my mom we ditched the cherry and went for a pumpkin color that I think both Dima and I like better. We then bought some coordinating fabrics that Mom will use in the quilt but the basics of the bumper and skirt will remain. Fabric 1 (from left to right) will be the skirt and fabrics 4 and 5 will be the bumper. We're leaving the quilt composition to mom. Very exciting!

May 2, 2007

What a Way to Start Your Day...

So I had a fun commute to work the other day... She said with disdain and thinly veiled sarcasm.

Dima dropped me off as usual at the Wheaton Metro Station. You may not know this but Wheaton has the longest single-span escalator set in the Western Hemisphere, 230 feet (70 m) in length[1]. Though it may look like I'm just showing off with my knowledge of either the Metro System and/or escalators, I am not. This is central to the point of my story. (I also do happen to know a bit about the Metro System. I have another blog that I've been really slack about keeping up with: metro.texture, which is all random pictures I've taken with my cell phone camera on the Metro.) I digress...

Dima dropped me off. I got my Washington Post Express from my favorite newspaper guy and entered the station. Swiped my Smartrip card and stepped on to the escalator. So far this is a normal day. And the hours that preceded it were normal too. (I got up, took my vitamins, my allergy medicine, fed the cat checked my email, etc. )

About halfway down the escalator I started to feel ill. And with every second of descent the nausea grew more and more intense. I stopped walking down the escalator and thought if I just stop moving it will go away. No luck. About two-thirds of the way down I decided to get off as quickly as possible so as much as I could in my bulbous condition, I sprinted to the bottom. Standing there I started to feel even more sick. I tried to decide... do I continue to walk toward the platform or do I find a place to puke? Finding a place to puke won out.

Now, as anyone who rides the DC Metro with any regularity knows, (or maybe you don't know until you're in a desperate situation like mine) since 9-11 any an all types of open receptacles have have been removed from the stations. Even the newspaper recycle bins have been moved up to the exits of the stations and off the platform. And the trash cans that are still on the platform are bomb-proof, so if you're feeling the need to throw up you've got to defy physics and practically stick you head in from the side to make a deposit.

Well, faced with this lack of options I scurried, as well as I could, to the Glenmont platform. On that side of the station the trains head away from the city and at that time of morning there would be less people to witness the humiliating display that was soon to come.

Look I managed to find a picture of the Glenmont side. See the arrow? That's were my desperate search finally came to an end. I leaned over and threw up into what I like to call the pit of despair. This pit is full of trash, gunk, God knows what else and as extra bonus it's all wet. So there's me, by the orange arrow, hoping against hope that that was it. No such luck. Another wave of nausea hit and I leaned over again. In my second heave (sorry to be so graphic) not only did I throw up but my phone dislodged itself from my purse and flew over the side into the pit of despair.

Let's take a pause to let that sink in.

So by this time I'm just weeping. Because, one, no one likes to throw up, and two, now my phone is in the gunk and what am I supposed to do about it. And to top it off, I had made special effort not to be seen during any of this, so no one has seen me! No one has offered to help the poor pregnant woman that has thrown up into the pit of despair. It was horrible.

So I head back to the now feared escalator. I need help. I don't know what is wrong with me and my phone is in a disgusting, wet hole. As is to be expected the ride makes me feel ill again and I cry the whole way up. It was great.

When I reach the top I head straight to the kiosk where the station manager sits. She was standing outside the door and listened in horror as I apologized for throwing up downstairs and then explained through weepy tears what had happened. First things first, she asks me if I needed an ambulance. I considered this but dismissed it, thinking it was motion sickness or lack of breakfast. (Which I was going to eat when I got to the office so don't get too excited about the Prego not taking care of herself.) The manager, whom I would later come to know was Ms. Wright, saw right away that I'm in a state. She ushers me into the kiosk, insists I sit in her chair, GIVES me the water out of HER lunch and goes to get the maintenance man.

When the two of them get back I re-explain to them and a gathering crowd of Metro employees what happened. Major, the maintenance man, asks "did [I] throw up ON the platform." And when I explain, no, I threw up into the pit of despair, I can see the relief on his face. Because, of course, no one has to clean up the pit of despair. Now all we have to do is get my phone out of it.

So we head back down to the platform, this time by elevator since clearly the 230 foot escalator had played a part in my malaise. On the way we chat a little. I comment on his height, which is significant and find that he is an inch taller than Dima, 6'9". We discuss the type of car he drives/fits into and visa versa. He then proceeds to tell me about a store in Frederick, Md. that makes clothes for tall men, giants even. Through all of this I've apologized again and again, about 10 times, and thanked him for helping me. He kindly acts as if it's no big deal.

So we get to the platform and lead him to the pit of despair. We immediately see my phone in pieces, minus the battery pack. See when my phone flew out of my purse and smacked into the muck, it broke apart. The back came off and the battery slid out of site under the platform. Major begins to use his nifty grabbing tool to get each of the pieces and pull them out of the pit. Still, we could not find the batteries. I insist it's okay. I can get another battery pack. At least I've got the phone, and more importantly the information in the phone. So what does he do? He crawls over the side and down into the pit of despair. All 6'9" of him. Good grief.

Well long story short he ducked underneath the platform and retrieved my battery pack from the muck, climbed back out, then took me back upstairs to the EMPLOYEE restroom so I could clean myself and my phone up. I did so and then upon exit profusely thanked Major and Ms. Wright for everything they had done. Then I headed back down the elevator and to work.

By far, though it started out horribly, this is the best Metro experience of my life.

May 1, 2007

The State of the Prego

I thought a quick update of where we are in the whole pregnancy thing would be appropriate. Today I am 28 weeks and 2 days. Baby E. is due July 21st, although at this point I either look like I'm due in 4 weeks instead of 12 OR I'm carrying multiples. Neither is the case... unless, there's a Houdini baby in there hiding exactly behind his/her sibling. This is of course unlikely and in general it "feels" like there's only one... not that I've got much experience in what it FEELS like to have one vs. two babies inside me.

In terms of feeling... lately Baby E. has taken on the character of a sumo wrestler. Lots of squatting and pushing outward in all directions. Less kicking and more just EXPANDING. Not especially comfortable but it makes for quite a show on the exterior belly. The other day Dima felt something pointy when he placed his hand over my belly. I have yet to see this and I understand at some point I'll be able to see feet and hands, etc. Just not yet.

I have no belly button at this point. Just a saucer.

I will also point out that though my belly is huge, the rest of me is not. I am mostly gaining girth in the belly department and have not, as of yet, taken on that puffy look that plagued the likes of say... Tori Spelling. Thank God! Fingers crossed on that front!

Other things to know... So far we have successfully navigated all the sonograms and we still do not know the gender of Baby E. There is plenty of speculation to go around though. Most people think we're in for a boy. A few think it's a girl. I flip-flop depending on the dreams I'm having. I'm not sure where Dima stands on it this week. Last check he thinks it's a girl. What we are sure of... we're expecting a human child.

The names are done. We have firsts and middles chosen for either gender. We are not sharing, much to Dima's sister's chagrin. We've also found that in the absence of a name some of our friends have taken to calling the Baby E. after themselves. So far we've heard Baby Daniel and Baby Natasha. Neither are right.

That's what I can think of right now. Or remember at least. The prego brain is in full force of late and I've got the mind of sieve. More later... if I remember how to blog.