Answering Your Questions

In my new role as a pregnant lady I've discovered that there is an inevitable list of questions that people ask once they find out you're pregnant.

Such as (in order of popularity) ...

When are you due?
November 26. Yes, this is one day before Conservative Hubby and I celebrate our second anniversary. He is hoping for a November 27 birth, thinking it will get him out of anniversary celebrations forever because the baby's birthday will take precedence. Every woman who knows him has quickly assured him this is not nor ever will be the case, but he may still be in denial about this fact.

The due date means, sadly, that our families have to put a hold on our annual tradition of spending Thanksgiving in Georgia. (Conservative Hubby pouted about this and didn't understand at first why we couldn't just go anyway. Um ... hello? I'd rather not give birth en route to the lake, thankyouverymuch.)

How far along are you?
If they don't ask the question above, people usually ask this one. As of yesterday, I am at 18 weeks. That means I just entered month 5. It's hard to believe it has already been that long. We're almost halfway there!

(Conservative Hubby is excited to reach the halfway point if for no other reason than he's annoyed he has to do all the lifting and mowing around the house now ... Little does he know that when the bambino comes his honey-do list is only going to get longer.)

How are you feeling?
It's so kind how many people ask right away how I am doing. I am grateful to say that I am feeling really well and have for the entire pregnancy. Due to some terrific genes (thanks, Mom!), I made it through the entire first trimester without a hint of morning sickness. As long as I ate a bit right away when I got up and munched on a little snack frequently throughout each day, I was fine.

Of course, I've had the general weird feelings that come when your body undergoes such massive changes, and I'd had my share of days when I felt foggy and beset by pregnancy brain. But I escaped without morning sickness or the major mood swings that I've heard others have to deal with, so hooray for that.

My biggest challenge has been a lack of energy and being incredibly tired. For someone who is on the go as much as I am and who isn't very good at just sitting down and relaxing, this has taken some getting used to. I've had to take it easy as much as I can while still working, commuting, doing a bit of freelancing, doing all this darn Elks work I got suckered into, keeping the house clean, and so on.

That's meant that the things that have gotten neglected are cooking, blogging, responding to personal emails, and other leisurely pursuits. (Conservative Hubby would undoubtedly add himself to the list of things that have been neglected, but I would argue with that--he's been even busier than I have been lately!)

Are you showing?
Of course I get this one from people who aren't standing in front of me, although the people who are standing in front of me to date have usually said something to the effect of, "Wow, I can't even tell you're pregnant!

And it's true, that baby has been darn slow to let the world know he/she is in there. People who have known our news have probably seen a hint of a belly in the past couple of weeks, and the really astute even a few weeks before that. But the average person who didn't already know our news would not have been the wiser until the past week or so. In fact, most of the people I work with besides the women right in my office do not yet know we're expecting (or at least have been keeping their suspicions to themselves if they have wondered anything).

It is going to be a bit harder not to notice now though, because in the past week or so the bump, small as it may be, has made itself known.

Still, it's just a little one.

Are you going to find out if you're having a boy or girl?
Yep! I would've been OK knowing or not knowing, but Conservative Hubby is dying to find out. He has gotten into the habit of saying "he" when referring to the baby, although one night he did slip up and say "she," which his friends took to be a sign that we are having a girl.

Some people have asked if I have an inkling what we're having, as I guess some women get a feeling one way or the other. The answer there is: I don't have a clue. No premonitions. No strong sense that it's one or the other. I even took some of those wacky quizzes based on old wive's tales about what signs or symptoms might predict what you're having. The result: It's too close to tell. See? Not even the old wive's tales can help on this one.

We've both said we'll be happy either way, but let's be honest. Conservative Hubby wants a boy. (And knows if we have a girl he's doomed because she'll have him wrapped around her little fingers.)

Our sonogram appointment is July 12, so hopefully after that we'll have some exciting news to share with you. I'll probably make you guess first though.

Have you had any weird cravings or food aversions?
Nope, not really. No wacky food combinations or strange dinner choices.

Right when I got pregnant (before I even knew for sure), I was eating spinach like a fiend. My body's way of telling me I needed more folic acid, I guess. Lately I've been eating more beef than ever (big juicy burgers and steaks, which aren't something I usually eat much of). I guess now I'm needing more protein.

I have been eating more salty things than usual (think an occasional bite of potato chips, but nothing excessive) and I certainly haven't shunned fried foods when an occasional opportunity arises to have a bit (French fries, fried pickles, fried cheese? don't mind if I do).

Still, I haven't gone overboard with anything or done anything as crazy as consume an entire pint of ice cream or a whole bag of chips in one sitting.

Probably the craziest thing is that for the first couple of months I completely lost my sweet tooth.

I know you don't believe me, but I'm serious. I didn't have any interest in pies or cookies or any sweets (even dark chocolate). The only thing I would enjoy would be a bite or two of ice cream on occasion.

That's slowly coming back, but even now I haven't been into baking at all because sweet treats just haven't sounded all that appealing. Strange, isn't it?

Do you have names picked out yet?
Yes on that one, too, but I'm going to go ahead and not share them with you here. Once we know what we're having, I might fill you in on the final name choice. Maybe. Or maybe not.

But I will tell you the name Conservative Hubby picked out if we have a girl: Brontosaurus Viper.

Yes, you read that right. If we have a girl he picked the name Brontosaurus Viper. Bronto or BV for short. Don't ask me where it came from. He says it would ensure that his little girl was never messed with. I actually think that would ensure she would be messed with. Forever. Needless to say, we will NOT be naming our child Brontosaurus Viper. No way, no how.

What does Butter think?
Absolutely nothing. As far as I know, Butter is oblivious to the little creature growing in my belly, that is undoubtedly going to turn his world upside down.

He's looked at me with boredom when I've moved more slowly getting ready for work in the morning. He has capitalized on the extra time I've spend sitting or lying down in recent months (more belly rubbing for Butter!). He's appreciated the extra walks he's gotten on the weekend, which have become one my preferred forms of exercise.

And he's looked on with curiosity as I've tackled the rather daunting task of cleaning out the office so it can become the baby's room.

But other than that, he doesn't have a clue.

So there you have it ... the most popular questions I've gotten recently about the little one. What questions do you still have that I didn't answer?


Working in the Garden (Part 2)

Remember the garden I told you about?

I have a little secret: It's not the only garden I'm in charge of this summer. I'm also taking care of a little raised-bed garden at an elementary school, which is part of a grant-funded school garden project I started last fall.

The problem is, school isn't in session over the summer. So I don't have any elementary students to help me keep things going. Instead, I just bop on over to the elementary school once or twice a week to weed and water and (hopefully soon) to harvest, too.Things are going along pretty well so far.

As long as I remember to bring my gardening clothes to work, that is. I learned the hard way gardening in dress clothes in the heat of the summer is not fun. Just sayin'.


Working in the Garden (Part 1)

You're probably thinking that I must not be gardening at all this summer.

You're probably wondering if pregnancy has slowed me down so much that I haven't even done any planting, and that's why you haven't seen the frequent garden updates that undoubtedly sustained you through the past couple of summers. (You did spend every waking minute waiting for my next post about plants, didn't you?)

But if you're thinking this sort of thing, I must correct you.

The truth of the matter is, I'm gardening more than I ever have before. It's just that most of my gardening isn't happening in L-Town and it isn't happening on evenings and weekends.

Yep, now it's part of my job.

The giant garden you're seeing here is 20-plus plots that are roughly 2ox20 feet. (They're roughly that because guess who divided them up? Yep, me. So they're rough.)

No, I'm not gardening this entire giant garden. It's our LLCC community garden, which is located right behind the Workforce Development building I work in (that's the building with blue you see here).

But I do have a plot in the garden and am in charge of overseeing the whole darn thing. So the person who divided up all the plots and assigned them to willing gardeners and purchased all the plants? That's me. And the person who sets up the sprinklers and keeps the walkways relatively weed-free and sprays the (nontoxic but frightfully smelly) Liquid Fence that keeps the deer and rabbits away? That's me, too.

And when I have a bit of time, I try to keep an eye on my own plot, which you see here. That's been a bit tough lately, with the rain and the other garden to-dos. But I did manage to put down a layer of wet cardboard and some straw in my plot recently in the hopes it might keep the insane weeds and grass that have overtaken our garden at bay.

And though things are progressing much more slowly than in my fertile little front-yard garden at home has in past summers, there are finally some tomatoes making an appearance. There are flowers on the (tiny) zucchini and cucumber plants.

Things are growing. Yahoo!


CSA Loot

In this edition of CSA Loot, the counter is completely overtaken by fresh greens and other treats of the vegetable variety. ... And Julie realizes that perhaps having an entire CSA share for a family of 2.3 isn't a good idea, particularly when 1 of the 2.3 refuses to eat most of the loot and when the other 1.3 still isn't quite up to her/their usual appetite.

(Butter was not counted in the 2.3 because he refuses to touch vegetables, too. Sometimes he's so much like his father it's scary.)