Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Another Openin'

Well, we're back to square one. My BBT had been high, I was 2 days late, so I took a pregnancy test. Not pregnant, again. John Dear, being very supportive, suggested that because the test was designed for women to use "at least 5 days before your missed period!", that maybe the test was not detecting my pregnancy since I was already late.

Umm, no. After having brunch with the in-laws, we went to CVS and bought another test. When we got home and I was about to take it, I discovered that my period was really just fashionably late.

And so ensued a bout of hysterical weeping and squeaking and feeling sorry for myself, yadda, yadda, yadda. John Dear was quite alarmed, however, and had me call Fairy Godmother, but by the time I got to the beep on her machine, I had somewhat calmed down. Left a message anyways and will see her on Friday at my usual appointment.

We had both convinced ourselves that I was pregnant. This was not like back in July (see here), where I was all dizzy and nauseated and that's it. This time around, I had some morning sickness, a lot of dizziness, late after expected period, high BBT, going to the bathroom more often. All signs pointed to positive. We talked about how we would tell the news to our parents. I was planning to put together a timeline to clean the house based on my due date.

As we were driving to our vacation, I tried to find some positives in this negative outcome.

  1. More time to clean the house -- with no impending deadline and I can be more methodical about it.
  2. More time to decorate the house after cleaning it -- we've lived in our house for 2 years and really haven't done anything with the place.
  3. I've decided that I'm going to join Weight Watchers and go to the meetings. The time when I've had the most successful weight loss has been at Weight Watchers and going to the meetings. Doing this on my own is not working for me right now.
  4. In line with number three, I'm going to really start exercising. Taking the dog for a long walk every night is good, but is not getting my heart rate up, so I'd like to do some cardio other than walking The Boy.
  5. John Dear is scheduled for foot surgery in 2 months' time with at least 6 weeks of recovery following. By not being pregnant, I can devote my attention to helping JD and he won't feel guilty for not taking care of his pregnant wife.
  6. I am a complete freak and would like my children to be born in a month during the school year. If we don't get pregnant in the fall, we won't have a summer baby. Yes, I know. I am a complete freak.

So, after careful consideration at our 2nd wedding anniversary dinner this past night, here's what we've decided to do: (drum roll, please)

We are going to keep on keepin' on until December (when JD should be recovered from his surgery) and if we are not pregnant by then, we will start initial fertility clinic proceedings. (I've not blogged about the issues in that area, but suffice it to say, it's a little bit harder for us to get pregnant naturally than the average couple). If we do get pregnant, then it was meant to be and bully for us.

We now have a plan and since I am obsessed with plans and routines I am overjoyed. Well, that's overstating it a bit -- let's just say that I'm in my comfort zone.

Friday, August 17, 2007


SCENE (JD and Jendeis at a local Chinese restaurant):

Jendeis: That waiter, don't you think he gets older every time we come here?

JD: Yes, that's how time works.


JD: He's been gone so long with our check, I bet he's growing even older.

Jendeis: If The Crypt Keeper comes from behind that screen with our check, I'm running. It's every man from himself.

JD: (laughing, spits out his drink)


Jendeis: You know, if The Crypt Keeper doesn't come out now, I will be highly disappointed.

Thursday, August 16, 2007

Elvis as POTUS

Elvis Presley was always tops with my parents. They got to see him in Vegas when he started performing there (when he was right at the edge of the precipice). For me, I've always enjoyed most of Elvis' songs, but I seem to like them more and more as I get older. For example, I never was into "Can't Help Falling In Love With You," but I've grown to like it and it became our first dance song at our wedding.

Anyways, I've been reading a Television Without Pity commentary on an Elvis documentary and needed to share the following:

Steven Boone: If Elvis had gone the evangelical route, he'd probably still
be here, and we'd prolly have three wars alongside Iraq and Afghanistan.

Sars: President Presley.

MZS: Oh, man, I SEE it.

Sars: Thirty years dead he's still better than the current occupant.

MZS: Elvis would have declared, like, one war per month. But on the plus
side: he would have kicked ass performing at his own inaugural.
Elvis Aaron Presley

Monday, August 13, 2007

Vacation, All I Ever Wanted

Hooray!! John Dear and I are going to go on vacation next week!! YAY!! What with my workload, JD's unemployment and his health issues, I was seriously in need of a getaway. Plus, this vacation coincides with our 2nd anniversary, so that's just great!

For 2 nights, we will be staying at a lovely little inn with gourmet restaurant courtesy of JD's lovely aunt and uncle (who gave me a gift certificate there for my birthday). The rest of the week, we will be staying it at my family's beach house. SIGH, I relax just thinking about it.

While at the beach, JD and I intend to get massages so that should also help with the de-stressing theme. Also, the house boasts a large garden/soaking tub, one that is big enough to hold me and lots of water and bubbles without all the water draining out. I will light enough candles to host a voodoo sacrifice, load an audio book onto my iPod and stay in the bubbles and hot water until I turn into one giant prune. Ahhh.

I'm leaving work right now so that I can pick up The Boy from doggie daycare and start making the meatloaf for tonight's dinner. After dinner and prepping food for tomorrow, I will start making my lists (shopping, packing, etc.) for VACATION!

Menu Plan Monday

During John Dear's brief interlude with unemployment (he'll be starting a new job in 2 weeks), he has been trying to make dinner during the week, so that it is ready when I come home from work. It feels like it is impossible to keep him to a menu plan, especially where recipes are involved. JD just hates, hates to follow a recipe -- preferring to make his own creations (which are not always that edible).

For this week, I'm going to write the plan for dinners this week and post it to the fridge, hoping that he'll follow the plan. Also, since JD isn't good about remembering to include a side vegetable, I bought a couple bags of frozen vegetable mixes that he can just pop in the microwave.

Monday - Meatloaf (steamed broccoli)
Tuesday - French Onion chicken (carrots, celery, onions)
Wednesday - Salmon fillet (whole wheat couscous & mixed veggies)
Thursday - Italian chicken (garlic cauliflower)
Friday - Teriyaki chicken (asian stirfry veggies)
Saturday - Dinner Out!

For more menu plans every Monday, check out Laura's blog, I'm An Organizing Junkie!

Friday, August 10, 2007

Weighty Issues & Jendeis Does Psychology

Super-Special Orthopedist also recommended serious weight loss to alleviate some of JD's pain and to also help him get through the proposed surgery. JD has been very successful at Atkins in the past, and is losing weight on a more-modified form now. Super-Special Orthopedist recommended a more-South Beach approach, so I'm going to check out the book this weekend, and hopefully, JD will read some of it.

Really, JD and I have been a little bit lax the past 2 weeks or so (me much more so than JD), so we are both going to need to recommit. I think that means that I will have to join Weight Watchers, since doing this on my own is really not working. I'll also need to really be exercising.

My encouragements to JD about exercise of any form have not helped at all. While there is the matter of his foot pain, there are other forms of exercise he could do. For example, swimming would be great for him, and both Special Orthopedist and Super-Special Orthopedist recommended using the recumbent bike. Plus, he could also do upper body work.

Last night, I asked JD if we set up sessions with a trainer would that help. JD was not receptive, but it may have just been a bad time to ask.

The problem with depression is the vicious circle that it causes. You feel down, so don't do anything, so you get depressed, so you can't do anything, so you get more depressed. See?

JD's baseline with meds is a little bit down anyways, so falls further pretty quickly. A graph might help with this. Let's do one, shall we?

As we look at this graph, you see that the blue line represents JD's baseline with meds. Baseline means that you're feeling neutral, OK. Not ecstatic, not depressed, just at zero on a graph. JD's baseline shows much more sad areas than happy areas, showing that it's a lot easier for him to get sad than to get happy, and his happy periods are shorter than his sad ones. (Mine is the opposite). When JD is not on any meds, his sad period becomes longer and deeper, and happy is shorter and shallower. So, deeper depression and much less happiness.

What anti-depressant meds try to do is move your baseline so that your neutral level is at 0 and not in the negative range. Different drugs work differently on different people, so with me, my antidepressant helps to put me a little above 0 as my neutral, where for JD his meds get him to a -1 or -2 as his neutral. Much better than -100, but still more negative than positive. Add this to JD's glass-half-empty paradigm of life (learned with his mother's milk) and you get someone who does not take news of any nature well.

**The above represents my thoughts on depression and IN NO WAY represents what a real doctor would tell you. The above is for explanation purposes and cannot be used as medical advice.**

Sorry if this was a downer -- I'm feeling really good right now because we have a plan to battle JD's pain and there's light at the end of the tunnel.

A New Hope

Yesterday was spent in furtherance of the saga that is John Dear's painful feet (as previously discussed here). While I feel cheered by what Super-Special Orthopedist told us, JD has (somewhat characteristically) responded by going into Fit of Depression (Melodrama Remix) - Track 2. But, I'm getting ahead of myself.

Super-Special Orthopedist is in Town Far Away, so after dropping off The Boy at day care (to JD's grumblings that we didn't have to do so), we left Hometown with a little over an hour to get there. I figured that the trip would take 45 minutes, so we were good to go.

Good to go until we were compelled to drive through a monsoon and several traffic snarl ups. This was the middle of the day so I had figured that traffic on the way to and in Town Far Away would not be bad. We plan, G-D laughs.

I had JD call the office when we were 15 minutes late to let them know we were on our way (we were probably 15-20 minutes away at that point). This message was given to the voicemail, not an actual person (that's important).

We finally get to Super-Special Orthopedist's office and guess what? They have no record of JD's appointment and no record of JD at all! My guess is that JD had called around to get the earliest appointment available with one of the Super-Special doctors in the practice and that when JD had found the earliest one, and said to make the appointment with Super-Special Orthopedist, the staff either didn't register that or JD thought he said that when he actually didn't. Does that make any sense?

The point is, is that this kind of hooey happens all the time with JD. There's always some kind of mess up, screw up, story or explanation. JD plays all "why does this always happen to me?" Sometimes, I just want to hang my head and say "have you ever thought that maybe, just maybe, you might have something to do with it?" Luckily, I have practiced patience and not said that or any of the variations of that statement to JD.

He knew that I was mad though, but I just explained, "look, I'm not mad at you, I'm frustrated with the whole situation." Which I was.

Anyways, Super-Special Orthopedist and his staff were able to fit us in with only a short wait. After Super-Special Helper and Super-Special Orthopedist took a few pokes at JD's foot, they said, "Oh, this is classic flat foot. No problem, we do an operation where we fuse the bones in the back of the foot together, realign the foot, no more pain." Well, they said more than that, but that's the gist of it.

So, we have a plan and a date for surgery. Super-Special Orthopedist recommended some things to do prior to the surgery and said if those work, we may be able to push the surgery off for awhile. At this point, I'm willing to do anything if we can get JD out of pain.

Wednesday, August 8, 2007

Works for Me Wednesday - 5-Minute Makeup

On most days in the summer, the last thing that I want to do is shellack myself with a lot of makeup. In fact, I'd prefer to go around bare-faced. Me without makeup, however, is not appropriate for the workplace (unless I get a gig as a Death-warmed-over zombie).

So, necessity being the mother of invention, I've started a great 5-minute-or-less makeup routine that is good for work, but I usually wind up doing this every day during the summer. The best thing about this routine is that this look is appropriate for the summer, but also works year-round.

5-Minute Makeup Routine
  1. Wash face with tepid water and mild cleanser. (I like this type - which doesn't require water; and this type.)

  2. Apply a combination sunscreen/moisturizer. (I'm in love with this. As a multiple skin-cancer survivor, I cannot stress enough the importance of making sunscreen a part of your morning routine.)
  3. Using an eyeliner brush, line your upper lids with black, brown or navy shadow. (If you're feeling daring, you can experiment with different and brighter colors. I've used a bright turquoise and a dark green).
  4. Curl your lashes. (It takes two seconds and is so worth it! All the magazines I read recommend the Shu Uemeura brand of eyelash curler, which I got here.)
  5. Apply 1-2 coats of brown or black mascara.

That's it, and it Works for Me!! See more hints, tips and hacks every Wednesday at Rocks In My Dryer.

Tuesday, August 7, 2007

Sha Na Na

That is, JD has a new job! Hooray!! He will start at the end of the month. At this point, I'm happy that he's found a new job because I am looking forward to more traditional cooking. Don't get me wrong; I love and appreciate that JD tries to make dinner for me since he is home all day. The problem lies with the fact that my darling does not really know how to cook, refuses to follow a recipe and believes himself a gourmet.

Last night, we had what can only be described as Pickled Beef, Peppers and Onions. It was not good. JD's method of creating this dish was to completely drown all ingredients in a mixture of balsamic vinegar and spices. After he asked me to do so, I did explain to him that marinating is not the same thing as drowning. I attempted to explain that foods have their own natural flavors and spices can be used to bring those out, but I'm not sure if that message got passed along.

We did better with the food when I used the Dinner Diva's Mega Menu Mailer. Basically, she gives you a shopping list, recipes and instructions for shopping, prepping and freezing 20 different meals. We tried one of the Regular versions and the Low-Carb version as well. Both worked well for us in terms of making sure that we eat more at home and eat more nutritious meals. For us, it was worth the money and the time needed to prep all the food when you first get it.

What Harry Potter Drinks

As I've mentioned here before, I heart Keckler's posts on Television Without Pity. In a recent recap for Top Chef, she gives us her recipe for Butterbeer, the oblivion of choice for Hogwart's students. I have not tried this yet, but hope to do so when I can again drink alcohol and find some butterscotch schnapps.

1 cup butterscotch schnapps
7 cups cream soda (almost one 2 liter bottle)

Carefully mix just before serving, adding the schnapps to the soda then stirring gently to mix well, or the fizz will dissipate too soon. Makes 2 quarts.