Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Only 8 weeks left...

Only 8 or so more weeks to go before little Sydney joins us!  It seemed like it has been this far off thing that would seem to take forever to get her, but here we are...almost there!

Malia has been feeling pretty good this last week, although she is starting to have trouble sleeping now.  She has to get up to use the bathroom several times a night now.  It seems as though she likes to tap dance on her Mom's bladder...little turd :) 
So true...
Sydney has been getting the hiccups a lot lately; getting that diaphragm nice and strong for that first breath.  We had a very minor freak out the first few times that we felt her doing it...we had no idea that it was the hiccups.  Naturally, our thoughts went to the worst imaginable scenarios...our kid had nervous tics or something else equally terrible. Well, all I can say is thank god for Google.  One quick search and our fears of having a handicapped child were abated.

Our next doctors appointment is on Thursday at the Womens Center where we'll be delivering.  We have reached the stage where our OB doc wants to see us ever two weeks now instead of every month, so there's no question that we are getting closer to the end!

 Its finally starting to warm up here...we even cracked 70 degrees last Friday, a literal heat wave.  We started taking the dogs down to the lake that we live close to to get our handi-capable Jax some much needed swimming exercise on his knee.  We found a nice little beachy spot that is secluded enough that we can let the dogs run loose and retrieve sticks and stuff.  I really like that we can walk down there from the house in less than 10 minutes.  I'm going to join them in the water once it warms up a little   Jax went bananas today, as usual, trying to chase a duck.  He almost got out to the middle of the lake today trying to get it.  He was really committed, you could see him literally pulling himself out of the water he was swimming so hard.  Such a special little guy...

F you pollen!
The warm weather has sent all the plant life into freaking pollen overdrive.  I've got pretty bad seasonal allergies, but this year is ridiculous...its almost debilitating its so bad this year.  I've even resorted to using a neti pot to try and help alleviate the symptoms.  Boy, what a weird sensation that thing is.  If you're not familiar with the neti, you basically pour warm saltwater up your nose and throughout your sinuses to flush everything out.  Yep, you heard me right.  You pour saltwater right into your face...and yes, it feels as weird as you think it would.  Its helping a little though, I think.

Mowing the grass has become quite the chore now.  I have to suit up in long sleeves, pants, dust mask and goggles to keep from going into anaphylactic shock.  I think I'm better protected than most guys working with the damn Ebola virus.  Just the other day, I had the bright idea that if I took a benadryl before I went out to mow, then I wouldn't be bothered as badly...  I found out why they put those warning labels on the side...you know, the ones that say something to the tune of "Don't operate heavy machinery".  Now, I know you're all thinking: "Zack, lawn mowers aren't really considered heavy machinery.  Its more like hefty machinery"  Trust me, I'm with ya on that one but I had one helluva time finishing the front yard.  It was all I could do to will my legs forward.  The bad thing was that it didn't really even help that much...

Friday, May 13, 2011

Cereal Nazi!

Well, we’ve had quite the week with 3 different doctor’s appointments.  Two were for the gestational diabeetus and the other was just our normal monthly visit to see our OB doc.  Speaking of which, we’re now at the stage where we need to go see him every two weeks instead of the every month schedule that we had before.  All the more evidence that she’ll soon be here!  Also on that note, our doc updated our due date back to July 12th now.  So mark yer calendar!

The doctor’s appointments went well.  The first was with a dietician who went over Malia’s food intake and blood sugar levels for the past couple of weeks.  She is doing really well!  The dietician was pretty surprised to see that Malia had been getting away with eating some of the stuff that she had been.  The second one with the diabeetus nurse was not as fun.  She kept harping on Malia about how eating cereal was “probably the worst thing you could be eating right now…”  Blah blah, whatever.  Her blood sugar is doing just fine eating that cereal, so I don’t see what the big deal is.  All I could think about as the nurse blathered on about how bad cereal is was of the Soup Nazi from Seinfeld.   “No Cereal for you!”

No, not this Extreme

Now, I’m not saying that she hasn’t made some poor choices in food…  She’s been trying to drink more water but, you know….water is BORING.  So, to make it a little more interesting we got some of those Crystal Light mixers.  Well, we neglected to read the label very carefully because we actually bought the “Energy” kind which has as much caffeine in it as, oh I don’t know: a friggin’ Monster Energy Drink.  Crystal Light….it’s EXTREME!   Seriously, this crap had more caffeine in it than a goddamn Red Bull…WTF?

Well, Malia had to find this out the hard way by drinking a boatload of the stuff before realizing what it was.  By then, it was too late…the damage had been done.  Keep in mind that she has been a saint and kicked the caffeine monkey cold turkey as soon as she found out she was preggers and hasn’t really touched the stuff since.  Well, she just accidentally dosed her and little Syd pretty good.  She had the caffeine shakes and everything. 

The most interesting part came later that evening when all of that jittery goodness made its way down to Sydney…  That kid went. Freaking. Nuts.  I swear, you could see her doing somersaults in there.  She must’ve been doing cartwheels or something…it was crazy.  We could even make out her outline on Malia’s belly, like she was trying to kick her way out and take on the world!  Now I’m worried that we’ve created some little crackhead baby addict; our own little Tyrone.  I’m sure that I’m going to catch her one of these days snorting Pixie Sticks in her closet.  If you don’t know what Pixie Sticks are, it’s basically the kid equivalent of doing Heroine…so, suffice it to say that it’s really, really bad.  I’ve always joked with Malia that this was our “starter” kid.  She’s going to be messed up…for sure.  We’ll have another one and maybe do it right from all the messed up stuff that have done to her.  If it’s a boy, maybe we’ll name him Mulligan.

Monday, May 2, 2011

29 weeks

Me: "So, you're gonna do this pic in jammies, huh?"
Malia: "You're damn right I am."

Sorry for the long stretch between postings...I'm sure our tens of readers have been waiting with eager anticipation.  Well, the last couple of weeks have been pretty busy for us, leaving me virtually no time to get all bloggy.

Malia has been feeling well despite having been recently diagnosed with gestational diabetes last week.  She barely squeaked in over the limit on 2 out of her 4 blood glucose tests, which technically means that she has it.  From what we've been able to learn on our own and through our doctor, it seems to be the most common ailment of pregnant women and isn't at all serious if looked after properly.  Malia's sister, Faith, had it with her last two kids so we weren't surprised when the tests came back that Malia had it as well.  Bye bye Ben & Jerry's...at least for now!

Yes Wilford, we got our diabeetus supplies
from Liberty Medical

We went to an appointment with a dietitian and got the ins and outs of controlling her blood sugar through diet and Malia got a nifty blood sugar monitor.  The dietitian seemed pretty impressed with our diet that we have already and we were both relieved to learn that there wasn't going to be all that much we had to change.  She was mostly bummed to find out that she couldn't eat all the fruit she could get her hands on anymore.  Apparently, that stuff is like kryptonite to diabetics.  So far, that's been the biggest pain in the ass about this...that and she has to remember to check her blood sugar after she eats.  I don't really think she is all that diabetic as most all of her readings are coming out on the low end of the range so far.

See Dad, it even has windows!
My Dad & step-mom, Lisa came up from S. Mississippi to visit a couple of weeks ago.  We had a great time hanging out with them while we could.  It kind of sucked because neither Malia nor I could take any time off from work while they were here.  We're both saving as much vacation time as possible for when little Sydney gets here in July.  They weren't put off by it at all though...those guys didn't really even need us to be here at all!  They had their rental car and a GPS and took off.  I think the main reason Dad wanted to come up was to make sure that we weren't living in some shanty on the other side of the tracks in squalor.  This being his first grandchild coupled with that he hadn't seen my new house had him a little worried, I think.

We went out to the Skagit Valley Tulip festival and showed them the spectacle that is the tourist trap of LaConner on a sunny weekend.  I think they had a good time, but you can only see so many fields full of flowers and antique shops before they all start to look alike.  I think Lisa was able to get some good ideas and inspiration from the local shops for her pottery, though.  I had fun learning more about how to use the new camera.  That thing is pretty amazing!  I have some more pics on my Flickr site if you're interested.

They also, very generously, took us down to Ikea and bought us some much needed furniture for the baby.  This being their first time, Lisa had a great time looking at all the trendy, very European, stuff that Ikea is famous for.  Dad was a good sport, too.  He and I had a good time making fun of all the retarded Swedish names for everything...

It was a weird strip club, OK?
Don't judge me.

We have a couple of other major events on our plate last week of having both the bachelor and bachelorette parties for our friends, Ron & Mindy.  I was in charge of the bachelor party so I made sure that there was plenty of food, booze, music and that we met the obligatory bachelor party boobie quota.  I grilled some steaks up here at the house and then we piled into a rented Yukon to see some live music downtown....and then of course: the strip club.

I could hardly watch these girls on the stage without thinking about being a dad to a little girl soon... It reminded me of the Chris Rock bit:
"Your only job as a father to a daughter...the only job.. is to keep her off the pole!"

Malia was in charge of the bachelorette party and all I know about it was that it was at the notorious local gay bar, "Neighbors".  There was lots of freakiness to be had by all.  Malia did relay that even with all the freaks walking around in full body PVC gimp suits, everyone was looking at the pregnant lady as if she was the one that was weird...whatever.

Monday, April 11, 2011

26 weeks

This was the only shot without "Spirit Fingers"
Only 12 more weeks, give or take, until we're somebody's parents!  Weird, huh?  Well, it is for me at least.  I had a glimpse into the future today as I sat in the waiting room at my dentists office.  There was a guy, maybe 24, with a tiny little infant.  She couldn't have been more than a couple of weeks old because she was sooo small.  Mom must have been in the back getting her dental work done while Dad was left in the waiting room with the little girl.  Well, the little one must have finally realized that Mom wasn't around because she totally lost it and began wailing to no end.  Nothing he did was worked...no rocking, swaddling...nothing.  You could see the look of sheer fucking panic on his face as he looked around the room and then down the hallway...he had no idea what to do with this screeching pile of pissed off baby.  Mom finally got done and came up front and grabbed the little one and she instantly stopped crying.  I can only imagine what that guy was thinking.  It must have been a mix of both relief and anger.  What a little asshole!   That...that is going to be me...I can see it coming.

Anyway, Malia is feeling well so far.  She has been having some trouble sleeping lately so we went to Babies "R" Us circus on Sunday and got her a pregnancy body pillow, so hopefully that helps.  Also, she has to go back in for a re-test for her gestational diabetes test.  Something happened on the first test and they need to do it over again.  This time she has to fast for 24 hours, which seems like a pretty cruel thing to do to a 6 month pregnant lady.

She was a happy child, really.

Its looking like we've finally made a decision on the name.  I think the thing that sealed the deal is my run-in with a little red headed 8 year old girl at the hair salon the other day:  As I was waiting for my turn to get a haircut, I noticed this particular little girl because she has a spooky resemblance to Malia when she was that age.  I was trying to not be too "creepy bearded guy" about staring but I couldn't help but think that I was getting a preview of what was to come.When her Mom called "Sidney, come over here honey."  I was taken aback... You see, Sidney is the name that Malia and I have been pretty sure about for a few weeks now.  This just erased any doubt in my mind that I had about this name.  Must've been a sign, so Sidney it is!  Still working on the middle name, but the really important one is in the can.

We've also been starting to play little Sidney some music in-utero.  I tried to make mine mellow and calming so I picked lots of really peaceful music that gives me goosebumps.  I figure that's good enough of a criteria...  Malia's consists of Dead Milkmen and a couple other songs.  She was disappointed when I told her that Pantera was definitely not gonna happen.  I put together a playlist you can see here.  I'm up for suggestions too, so shoot me an email or something.

She either hates it, or loves it.  We can't decide which one becasue she goes crazy whenever we play it for her.  I'm going with the ieda that she loves it...nothing scientific, but thats what I'm sticking with.  I'm also picking back up my guitar to learn some songs to play for her once she gets here.  I've farted around with the guitar off and on for years now.  I know just enough to know how much I suck at playing the guitar.  It's fun trying to learn some Beatles songs though.

I finally returned some underwear that I tried to buy for Malia a couple of weeks ago.  You see, I was trying to be a really nice & thoughtful husband and get her some new underwear at Fred Meyer when I heard her complain about how her old ones don't fit her anymore.  So, I go to Fred Meyer (I needed socks too. It wasn't like I was just going shopping for panties.) and walk in woefully unprepared for the huge selection of womens underwear...  You see, I'm used to the very simple choices that I have to make regarding my own underwear. 1st choice - Boxers or Briefs, 2nd choice - Size: S, M, L, XL...etc.  Done.  Easy as pie.

I now know that womens underwear not only comes in 30 different styles and sub-genres, but the size...oh the sizes.  No such thing as small, medium or large, oh no!  Much to easy that way.  I had to totally guess what size to pick based off of my prior shopping trips with Malia.  As far as cut?  Well, I tried to logically think it out: "What would be the most comfortable and supportive for her...she is pregnant after all."  OK, the bigger granny ones would be great!  She won't care, she's pregnant!

Feeling a bit weird about buying panties, I bury it amongst other much more manly things like tools, camping gear and some motor oil.  Now that I think back on it, that checker must have been really confused: Tools, camping gear, motor oil and womens underwear...  In my attempt to not look like a weirdo, I think I achieved the opposite most successfully.

I triumphantly make my way to the house to deliver my most thoughtful of gifts to the pregnant one only to be thoroughly disappointed in her response:

Me:     "Hey babe, I remember you complaining about your underwear the other day so I picked you  
            up a  package while I was out."
Malia: "Oh wow, that was very (opens bag) sweeeeet of you....  What the f*ck is this?"
Me:    "I know its super granny, but hey...they'll be super comfortable!"
Malia: "Yeaaaah, I'm not wearing these.  Are you crazy or something?  (Looks over package) How big, 
            exactly do you think I am?  These are HUGE!"
Me:    "Uh, I don't know....I just guessed.  Thats close to your size of jeans isn't it?"
Malia: "Uh, no.  Not, not even close."
Me:    "Oh....I'll take them back."

So there I was on Sunday: In the return line at Fred Meyer, panties in hand.  I'm just lucky it wasn't the same cashier.

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

25 weeks and counting...

Sorry for the late post this week...I've been feeling rather non-motivated to do much of anything lately.  It doesn't help that this week has been particularly busy either.  Not that its been all that busy, I'm just a lazy ass and anything outside of going to work and coming home to watch Star Trek: The Next Generation reruns leaves me completely exhausted and a bit cranky.

Malia is feeling well so far, although she'd beginning to outgrow the new shirts we bought just a week or two ago.  The little one is not so little anymore either... She's gotten a lot more active, too.  When she gets in a mood, we can actually see her doing somersaults in there.  Very weird, but very cool at the same time.

We go to the doctor again on Friday for our monthly checkup, but as far as we can tell everything is looking good!  I think the doctor wanted to screen Malia for gestational diabetes on this visit, but again, everything is going swell so far.

I have to apologize about the poll.  It doesn't seem to be working and I can't figure out why.  I'll try to get it fixed soon and maybe even add an option to submit your own name suggestion for our little bundle o' joy.  I'm split at the moment between Bathsheba and Jermajesty...

This last Friday, April 1st, was our 7th wedding anniversary.  I wanted to make it really special since Malia is pregnant, so I bought us tickets to Teatro ZinZanni which is a crazy dinner-circus-theater-show thing. Now, if you live in the Seattle area and haven't done this yet, do yourself a favor and put this on your to-do list.  The food was great and the show was even better.  Our faces hurt afterwards from laughing the whole time.  Its pricey, but worth it.

A camera so awesome, it takes its own picture.

We got a new toy this last weekend, too: A Nikon D90.  I've been a bit of a photography nerd for some time and have had a couple of really nice film SLR cameras, but nothing this nice in the world of digital.  I got a smoking deal on it through craigslist to boot.  I was a little leery about carrying that much cash to meet some jerkwad from the interwebs, so I made sure we met in a very busy Starbucks on a Sunday morning in Kirkland. All went well and I got myself and my shiny new gadget home safely.  It's been fun learning how to use it, but its gonna take me awhile to master the damn thing.  Its got submenus of submenus of submenus of options, settings and other customizable wizbangs.  Oh, and its heavy, too.  Heavy means good in electronics, right?

Spring is definitely here.  It hit me as I was outside on Sunday, mowing the grass with a jacket on...  Now, I grew up in the South where there are two seasons: Hot and Not-So-Hot.  So I thought the idea of mowing with a jacket on was pretty damn funny considering I grew up having a heat stroke while mowing.  We finally got the shed organized, too.  That thing has looked like the aftermath of a lawn & garden center explosion ever since we got it.  The funny thing is that it only took 1 Saturday's worth of time and about $60 to get it organized.  Must be all those Star Trek reruns...

$4 a gallon? That means I can have gold plated lavatory!
I got to take a super cool tour of the Everett main
plant on Tuesday with one of my old coworkers
from Kenmore Air.  He got a job there as a Manufacturing Engineer about 3 months before I did!  He took me on one of the infamous 787's being built right now.  I know that it is made from mostly composites, but I was really surprised how much of the airplane was composite.  Pretty much the whole damn airplane, with the exceptions of some high stress parts and the engines, of course.  Next, we went over to see the massive new 747-800 Intercontinental.  That thing is seriously freaking huge.  I wish I could have taken pictures to show you guys because it was really pretty impressive to think that that thing actually flies.  The one we saw happened to be one being built for a member of the Saudi royal family.  It was getting decked out with a wicked custom interior: showers, hot tub, bowling alley...you name it.  The base price for the airplane alone without engines and interior is around $380 million......  Just remember that next time you fill up you gas tank.

Monday, March 28, 2011

6 months

Well, here we are...six months down, three more to go.  It's funny, Malia used to really hate doing these pictures but now I think she's actually starting to enjoy it.  She way to stubborn to ever admit that I may have actually been right, though.  The little one is really starting to move around quite a bit now.  It's gotten to the point to where I can feel her doing cartwheels, or whatever the hell she does in there, at night if Malia snuggles up to me in bed.  I don't even have to try to feel it anymore, its pretty obvious.  I can't imagine how she sleeps with that circus going on in there.  Must be payback for all the flashlight torture we dished out earlier.

We're still haven't picked a name yet.  If you look over to your right, you'll see that we've narrowed it down to a few of the top contenders for you to vote on.  I figure what better way to make one of the most important parenting decisions than to let the fine citizens of the interwebs decide!  I only wish that we had beat that couple that auctioned the rights away to naming their baby on ebay to the punch.  We could have a a cute little RC Delco running around, in addition to a few bucks for Mom & Dad's vacation fund!  Oh well, maybe next time...

Speaking of crazy, Malia has been inundated with crazy baby ladies (or CBL's as I call them) lately.  You know what I'm talking about; those random strangers, and not-so-strangers, that feel like its OK to touch her because she's pregnant...  Malia is just waiting for the next lady that does it.  She's already got it all worked out:

"Well, I never!"

CBL:  "Oooh, look at you!" (puts hand on Malia's belly)
Malia: (Immediately puts her hand on CBL's belly)
CBL:  (Startled) "Wha, wha, what are you doing?"
Malia: "Yeah, weird isn't it?"

I hope I'm there to see it...it will be awesome.

What could go wrong?

Also, we're already looking into daycare... Apparently you have to start looking several months before you baby is born.  Funny thing, turns out daycare costs like a million dollars a second...yay! There goes all that "extra" money we thought we might have.  It's too bad that you can't just lock your kid in the backyard while you're at work.  She'd have the dogs to keep her company, so she at least wouldn't be lonely.

In other news, Jax the handi-capable junkie dog is doing quite well.  We've weened him off of the hard stuff and now he's getting back to somewhat normal.  He gets the staples out this Saturday which is a big deal.  I offered to do it myself with my new office scorpion, but Malia thought that it was a bad idea...I'll have to admit that think she may be right on that one.

Other than that, it was a pretty slow week for us here... Malia went back to work after a week of dog sitting, and boy was she ever excited about that!  My new job is going pretty well.  It's turning out to be much more complicated than I had originally thought, which is a good thing because it won't get boring.  I'm just still the new guy which sucks because it seems that I'm asking a question every couple of minutes.  I'll figure it out soon though.  

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Belly Picture and more Doggy Shenanigans

Well, we're now at 23 weeks...It's weird to think that we have just over 3 months left before the newest member of our little dysfunctional family arrives.  Malia is starting to become more uncomfortable which, sadly, is probably only going to get worse.  The little one has taken to sitting really low and squishing Malia's bladder. Malia likes to say that "Ugh, she's using my pelvis like a friggin' hammock!"

We've had to resort to the flashlight trick a couple of times which only leads to more squirminess. I guess that should be expected though. I mean, look at it from her perspective:  There you are, chilling out and all peaceful, floating around in the darkness and then: BAM!  A giant flaming fireball right next to your head.... It would freak me out too.  It doesn't help that I used one of those giant Mag lights. You know, the kind you could club someone to death with.  Now that I actually think about it, we probably shouldn't do that anymore.

We abandoned the crib that we bought on Craigslist because our good friends Ron & Katie offered to let us use their crib.  Its a gorgeous solid maple crib that was handmade by Ron's Dad.  I am very happy that I don't have to fix up that gross crib anymore.  It was definitely a chore that I was not looking forward to.

We have finally set up our baby registries for those of you who would like to get something.  There are links to both a Babies R Us and a Target on the right, just below the creepy baby thingy.

No pants Dog

The other really big thing that happened this last week is that Jax finally got his knee surgery!  We found a vet that did the procedure for roughly half of the other quotes that we got from other vets around town.  It was still ridiculously expensive, but thanks to our tax return it was doable.

The vet we chose did the surgery a little differently than most do.  It was pretty invasive and will require more time to recover, but the benefit to this way is that the joint will be much more stable in the long run.  The poor guy has an incision from just below his knee all the way up to his hip which has 35 staples keeping it together.  Getting him home afterwards was probably one of the worst things that I have ever had to do.  The poos guy was in so much pain and didn't understand why this was happening to him.  Getting him loaded into and out of the Civic was really hard, but once we got him home, he did much better.  He had a rough night that first night because his pain meds weren't really sufficient.  I went back to the vet the next morning and got a prescription for a much better painkiller and he was much happier.  He's doing good now, but we've got a long way to go for a full recovery.


On a more fun note, I got inspired by a picture I found online of somebody creating various creatures out of office supplies and decided to make my own office scorpion for my desk at work.  You see, I have a very large desk and am in desperate need to find stuff to put on it so it looks like someone actually sits there.  I'm also pretty excited about a model of a B-17 that I bought the other day.  I'm planning on putting it together over the next few weeks and filling up some more real estate on my desk.  I must have put together a dozen or so of these models as a kid, but then I would blow them up or something equally juvenile, so I'm looking forward to trying to do it really well.  I'm hoping it will be a pretty effective distraction and also a cool desk accessory.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

22 week pic n' stuff

Sorry to keep our tens of readers waiting an extra day for the update.  I'm quite sure you've all been waiting on pins and needles...

Anyway, Malia is feeling pretty good.  The little one has gotten into a routine that keeps Malia up a bit at bedtime with all of her antics in there.  I felt three or four really good kicks, punches or head-butts...whatever they were.  Her knee is also responding well to the cold packs & ibuprofen the Doc prescribed.

We went in for our 5 month check with our OB doc last Friday and everything is looking good in that department as well.  Her fundal height measured at 23cm, which is a bit on the larger side, but perfectly normal.  The doc told us that your measurement should roughly equal the number of weeks pregnant that you are. so we're looking good!

The name front is not looking so good though...  Normally, Malia and I agree on almost everything without even trying.  Not this time though. It seems that all the ones that she likes, I don't and vise-a-versa.  She even got really upset with me after looking over a list of names that I picked out of a name book.  Like I was deliberately trying to pick an awful name or something.  Granted, on a second viewing myself, some of them were pretty terrible.  Were taking it pretty seriously and trying our best to go through all the possible schoolyard permutations.  For example, I had taken a liking to the name "Anna", but Malia instantly vetoed it when she said it fast.  Try it for yourself... go ahead, I'll wait...  What did it sound like to you?  We heard cute little "Anna Leake" turn into horrible "Anal Leak".  Great.  There goes that one.  Basically, its going to be really hard to pair a pretty girls name with our last name.

It was much harder than I though.  Trees are heavy.
In other news, we finally got some trees for the backyard and got them planted last week.  We are hoping that they'll grow to create a barrier between us and the mouth-breathing apartment dwellers behind us.  Hopefully we'll be able to avoid anymore "accidental doobage" that'll cost me another thousand bucks at the vets office.  We found a smoking deal, pun intended, at Home Depot on the fast-growing Green Giant Arborvitaes.   8 footers for $30 each, so we grabbed six got them in the ground, thanks to my brother in law Chris.

Speaking of the black hole of money that is my dog, Jax; we've finally got enough money to pay for his bum knee surgery.  You see, his super spazziness has caused him to tear his CCL, the doggy version of an ACL.  We really got lucky and found a vet that recently came over from Eastern Washington who does the surgery for roughly half of what everyone else charges.  We were a bit skeptical at first, but after doing some homework we learned that apparently all the vets over here on the Westside are just douchebags that charge that much because they can...  So Jax goes in on Friday for surgery and its supposed to take him up to six months to recover.  We even have to take him to doggy physical therapy in a friggin' swimming pool.  Man, he sure is lucky to have come to live with us.

Monday, March 7, 2011

21 Weeks

It's that time for the weekly belly shot again!  Malia was a good sport this time and delayed her almost instantaneous change into her jammies when she got home so I could snap this one.

She went to the orthopedist for her knee last week, and the good news is that the doctor doesn't think that there is anything wrong with the joint. He thinks that the pregancy has made her body have an immune response to her knee and will probably go away as soon as she has the baby. He prescribed  a brace, cold packs and a new chair at work so she could stay off of it.

Malia has been less than enthused about the new chair.  She emailed me today saying that she felt dumb rolling all around her office and that all of her coworkers thought she was being really, really lazy.  She especially didn't like it when I called her a cripple; she much preferred the term handi-capable.

Today we got the shipment my mother sent us, or rather sent to her granddaughter because it was addressed to her and not us.  She told me that she bought all the pink stuff that was in town, and she wasn't kidding.  There was even a bitchin' tie-dyed onesie.  Thanks to my Mom, she gonna be the pinkest, most tie-dyed newborn at the hospital!

On another note, today was my first offical day at the office.  It is a little strange because I've never worked in a professional office setting before.  Nothing bad, I'm just not used to such formality. I'm more used to a lewd and crude atmosphere. I did have a pretty uncomfortable moment in the lunchroom today. I brought my sandwich, chips & yogurt in a Safeway plastic sack and when I went to the cafeteria at lunch, I noticed that everyone else had a nice lunch tote thing. Not only did I have to sit by myself because I'm the new guy, but I brought my lunch in the most ghetto thing that I could have possibly chosen. A black hefty bag would have been worse, but not by much...

Anyway, so there I am sitting by myself and my stupid noisy grocery sack lunch is making the most noise that it can possibly muster.  So what does everyone do...stop talking and stare at the new guy with his ghetto lunch sack.  Awesome.  I felt like that fat kid at the 3rd grade lunch table who had the paper bag when all of his friends had the Han Solo lunchbox.  Lame...  So, I went and bought myself a fancy lunch carrier today; the Lunchinator 3000 with "New Cooling Gel Power!"  Eat that, assholes!  Bet your sack doesn't have cooling gel power, does it?

Other than that, it was a good day.  It was information overload, like any first day tends to be.

By the way, Stoner Dog Jax seems to be OK.  I'm not entirely sure he's sober yet though.  I just to this pic today, you be the judge :)

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Halfway there!

After much scolding from my mother, I have finally found some time to sit down and update the blog. The last couple of weeks has been pretty hectic for us; me in particular.  My Grandmother passed away on Valentine's Day and on the very same day my dog got reaaally stoned (more on that one in a minute).  Now, I know that most of you have been religiously checking the blog everyday for a new post filled with riveting and exciting stories and waiting with much anticipation, so without further ado:

20 WEEKS!!!

My Gammy
My Grandmother, Gwen Leake, peacefully passed away on Valentine's Day at 86 years old in my hometown of Pascagoula, Mississippi.  Her health had been in decline for quite some time so it was not a surprise, although such news always comes as a shock to the system.  I hopped on the first flight I could get booked into Houston, which was ridiculously expensive.  There I met my aunt Linda at the airport and the next day we made the long 8 hour car ride to Pascagoula.  It was good to catch up as I couldn't remember the last time I had really gotten to spend any time with her.

The funeral in Pascagoula was very nice and my Dad and Linda both gave wonderful eulogies that, at least for me, seemed to capture the essence of what she meant to all of us.  The whole family then piled into the car again to make the trek back to Houston where she was laid to rest next to my Grandfather, Charles.

Handsome Devils!

It was all pretty exhausting, but I feel like it was a worthy tribute to a woman who had such an impact on all of our lives.  It was also really great to see my family.  One of the downsides to living up here is that I don't get to see them nearly as often as I'd like to.  I even got a chance to eat some excellent Gumbo, which is pretty much impossible to find up here. :)

Stoner Dog:
OK, for those of you who don't know about our dog Jax...he's a very "special" kind of dog; and by "special" I mean "dumb as a box of rocks".  Don't get me wrong, I love this dog to death.  He is the most loyal and loving dog I've ever had, but I think that Jax would ride the doggy short bus, if there were such a thing...that or have to wear a doggy helmet.  I can't decide which mental image is funnier. Needless to say, he is a bit of a handful.  To make things worse, he's a really big dog! We think he's a cross bethween a Rhodesian Ridgeback and a German Shepard.  Basically, this means that I have about 95 lbs. of  stupid running around my house on a daily basis.  But he is sweet.

With the prerequisite background out of the way, I can get to the real story.  I got home around 4pm and let the dogs in from the backyard.  Everything seemed to be just fine as both Jax & Cody were really excited to be let in, as usual.  About half an hour later I noticed that Jax was acting pretty strangely.  I got up to investigate and as I watched him swaying and staring at the garbage can, he fell right over!  I quickly scooped him up and rushed off the the vet.  

"Welcome to Banfield, we're here to take your money!"
On the way to the vet the only explanation that I could think of for Jax's behavior was that some a-hole from the apartment complex behind my house had thrown over some kind of steak filled with poison or something.  I was livid and really worried at the same time.  The vet took him in right away and ran all kinds of tests to try and find the cause of his erratic behavior.  Well, after 3 hours and $650 all the vet could tell me was that she couldn't figure out what was wrong with him.  She thought that it might be antifreeze poisoning, but they didn't have the test needed to see if that was the case or not. She told me that I would need to go to another Vets office to get anymore help.  I was pretty upset that I had spent all of that time and money for them to tell me that I had to go somewhere else because "we just don't know whats wrong with him".  Note to everyone:  DO NOT waste your time with Banfield Pet "Hospitals".  They must hire all the vet school rejects or something.  Total scam. So, I begrudgingly pay my bill and get Jax into the car to go to the other Vet.  On the way to the other hospital is when I get the call from my Dad about my grandmother...

Well, once I get there the Dr. seemed to instantly know what was wrong with him.  The conversation went something like this:

Dr: "So, I think I know what's wrong with your dog, but I need to ask you something"
Me: "That's great!  What do you need to know?"
Dr: "Yeah, so I'm going to ask you this and I want you to know that I need the truth in order to help Jax here.  I just want you to know that I won't judge you at all, OK?"
Me: (Uncomfortably) "Uh, yeah...sure, whatever Doc"
Dr. "Has Jax had any access to some Marijuana?  Like, maybe he accidentally got into your stash or found a pipe or something like that?"
Me: (Relieved) "Ha ha ha! Do you think he's stoned!?  If he did get into some, it wasn't from me.  I bet that someone could have thrown it over my fence though!"

Approximate representation of Jax on the ride home.
The Dr. ran whatever test they run for that - a doggy urinalysis or something, and sure enough...he was baked out of his gourd!  They just sent me home and told me to keep an eye on him.  I guess someone threw a sizable chunk of weed over the fence and Jax got to it.  I still can't figure out why they would do such a thing.  If it was a joke, that would be an awfully expensive joke.  Maybe some kid was ditching his stash before Mom caught him or something...who knows.  It turned out to be an expensive joke for us, though.  Close to $1000!

In other, less dramatic, news; I start my new job on Friday!  I had to go down to Boeing Field today to do some HR stuff and get my picture taken for my badge.  Friday is my official first day on the job.  I'll have to drive back down to Boeing Field for the orientation seminar which is supposed to take half the day and then back up to the Everett Plant to my new office after that.  Malia and I are both excited!

Speaking of Malia, she is still feeling pretty good despite being 5 months pregnant.  Her knee is giving her some trouble though.  That particular knee has given her trouble in the past, so I think that the pregnancy is exacerbating the problem.  She's got an appointment with the orthopedist on Thursday to get it checked out.  More exciting though, is that she and I both can feel our little girl moving around in there!  I thought I felt a tiny little kick before I left to go to Texas, but I for sure felt one two nights ago!  Very cool!!!

The nursery is coming along nicely as well.  We finally decided on a color - Cosmic Cream.  Its a very pale yellow with a peachy hue to it.  Its girly without being too overbearing about it. I think it will go nicely with all of the stuff we have in mind.
Mama & Baby

Saturday, February 12, 2011

I K E A !

Malia and I decided to make the trek down to Ikea this morning to try and find some stuff for the baby's nursery.  I know what you're thinking: "Ikea on a Saturday...are you stupid or something?" Well, if you have to ask that question, then you obviously don't know us that well.

"I see you've chosen the Ektorp"
Before I continue, I should explain what Ikea is. Some of our relatives don't live close to one, so they may not have heard of it before. It's basically a Swedish Wal-Mart, only just for home furnishings.  They have tons of stuff with awesome names like the Bjorn table and the Linnarp TV stand. Silly Swedes!.  Most of their stuff is designed by semi-famous designers so its pretty, and cheap too.

Well, this place is famous for being a complete zoo when all the mouth-breathers descend upon the store on the weekends.  We were pretty surprised when we found that it wasn't that bad.  It was crowded, but nothing too bad.  We found some really cute stuff.  I never thought that I'd get excited buying ladybug lamps and animal print curtains, but it was a lot of fun.  I think that we have finally figured out how we ant to decorate her room now.  Between the cute Ikea stuff and these really cool prints from a local artist, Noelle Dass; I think that we'll have a pretty cool room for her.

Quit playin' with yer dingy!
I've got to sand and refinish the upper part of her crib soon.  Its got some paint on it that will be right at mouth level once she gets to standing up and I'm not too sure about the paint.  I'd rather sand it off and refinish it with stuff I know is safe.  We don't want her ending up like Tommy Callahan.

We got our "Travel System" the other day as well.  A Graco carseat, stroller and two bases for both the cars.  The cute girly print that we wanted wasn't available anymore so we had to go with a more neutral pattern. Man, babies need lots of stuff.  Needy little wankers, aren't they? :)

Here are some pictures of our nursery in progress.  We still need to get the mattress into storage and pick a paint color, but I think it's coming along nicely!
Cool Sun light fixture

Ladybug & Flower lamps

Dog butt coat-hangers

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

It's a girl!

My little girl
Wow, what an awesome day today has turned out to be!  I got my official offer letter from Boeing, we found out that we are having a little baby girl and the freaking sun was shining...  I don't know how today could get much better.

Malia and I made it to the hospital way too early, but turned out to be a good thing.  We were told to go and check in with the main admitting office on the 1st floor, but they immediately sent us to another check-in office on another floor who, of course, sent us to another office on another floor to finally get the ultrasound done.  No wonder healthcare costs so much.

In Russia, baby take own pictures
Anyway, once we met our tech, a nice strong Russian lady named Olga (not kidding), she took us right back and got right down to business.  She found the baby in no time flat and began making all of the necessary measurements for the scan.  It was becoming difficult for her to do her job between Malia's continuously filling bladder and the fact that our little girl is quite fidgety...just like her Mom already.

Boy, this ultrasound was quite different  from the last one.  Last time, we had to have the doctor point out was the hell we were looking at, but not this time!  Most everything was pretty obvious; arms, legs...even little toes and fingers!  She was pretty damn active, too. In the span of about an hour, she flipped end-over-end at least three times that I counted and even waved at us a couple of times.  The pictures don't do the scan justice.  Olga seemed to pick the worst views to snap a picture for us.  I was going to ask for a better one, but I was afraid she might hurt me.

The Doc came in after Olga was done and took a look for himself.  He looked at us and said, "Well, you're definitely pregnant..." with a big grin.  He said that it looked like we had a really healthy baby.  He also said that we looked to be about 17 weeks and not the 18 weeks that our OB doc thought we were at.  Looks like we'll have to do another 18 week belly pic again for next Monday.

The really weird part about that is that being at 17 weeks pushes our due date to close to the end of July.  July 21st just happens to be the 10 year anniversary of our "first date".  Wouldn't that be weird?

The other awesome thing for today is my offer letter from Boeing...  I got an email today with the offer letter and immediately opened it up.  I was really very anxious to see whether or not they were going to put me in for the level 2 or level 3 position since the job listing was for a level 2/3.  I was slightly disappointed to see that they offered me the level 2 position, but I was floored when I saw what the pay was.  It was WAAAAAAAAAAAY more than I was expecting.  It was quite a bit higher than my highest estimate of what they would pay.  Maybe now we can actually afford daycare for our new little girl!
This will be my first purchase with my new, huge, paycheck

Monday, February 7, 2011

Almost halfway!

Almost halfway!
Here we are at 18 weeks!  She's still not too happy that she's getting her picture taken every week:

Me: "Hey it's Monday, time to take another picture."
Her: "Sigh... Ah man, I was hoping that you forgot."
Me: "Na, I set a reminder in my phone so I wouldn't."
Her: "I hate your phone."

We're really excited about our ultrasound appointment tomorrow because we'll hopefully get to learn if its a little boy or girl.  Hopefully the little one cooperates and shows us the goods, or lack thereof. :)

Nothing else going on so I'll keep this one short.  Look for a longer post tomorrow with some goodies from the doctor!

Off to study Differential Equations!
This is funny... Really, I promise.