Tuesday, September 28, 2010

The Enforcer

Now that Jeremy is back to school, he has lots of homework.  In particular, engineering graduate school requires lots and lots of problem sets.  I try not to be too jealous because everyone knows I love a good problem set (and the associated school supplies).  To keep Jeremy on task, Danger has appointed himself the homework enforcer.  This picture shows both of my guys hard at work.  Jeremy has his school stuff all spread out on the coffee table and is plugging away at his problem set.  Danger is keeping a close eye on him to make sure he stays focused and doesn't stop to check his fantasy football stats.  I think the two of them make a good team.

They Grow Up So Fast

This past Thursday was Jeremy's first day of school.  I couldn't resist taking a picture of him all dressed up in his new back-to-school shirt on his way to class.  As you can tell by the expression, Jeremy was not such a fan of the back to school picture idea, but I think he's a cutie anyway. 

Friday, September 24, 2010


How did people ever raise babies before the iPhone?  I really don't know.  It turns out there really IS an app for just about everything.  We've already used the baby name app to help narrow down our list of choices.  There are also apps for things like timing contractions, keeping track of when you fed the baby last, and analyzing baby poo (we wouldn't have thought we needed this one until we started reading baby books.  Apparently baby poo is a BIG DEAL).  If my iPhone had opposable thumbs it could pretty much raise the baby for us!

I actually did find a cool app for learning baby sign language.  We were kind of on the fence about the whole baby sign thing until we saw it in action.  Our friends in Palo Alto taught their baby several of the signs and when we saw them last weekend he used them a couple of times.  Usually he used them to indicate that we were a little slow on replenishing his supply of goldfish crackers, but still, he was able to communicate what he wanted without throwing a fit.  We're not going to go over the top, we don't need the kid to be able to write a dissertation before she can speak, but it would be nice for her to be able to communicate her basic needs.  Plus our daycare uses the signs too, so she'll get reinforcement from the teachers there.

Our friends' baby knows: eat, water, more, milk, cheese, and hat.  That seems like a pretty good list.  We mostly got to see him demonstrate his emphatic use of the more sign, but we also saw an extremely cute use of the eat sign combined with a huge sad baby look when it became apparent that while we were all getting ice cream, he was not.  While "hat" is not necessarily that useful, it is adorable since the sign is to pat your head.  We'll probably add a few signs of our own as well.  Clearly, any baby of Jeremy's will need to know how to signal a touch down (we've already had the conversation about how we need to check if the hospital has free wireless internet just in case the baby is born during the fantasy football playoffs).  We also had a bit of fun coming up with our own signs for "mommy" and "daddy" although we probably won't teach those to the baby, just in case she repeats them in public :)

You Pass Some, You Fail Some ....

The NP from our doctor's office called with the results of my bloodwork.  The good news is that I passed the glucose tolerance test!  Yippee!  No gestational diabetes for me.  Most importantly I don't have to take the second round glucose challenge test.  The test consisted of chugging a sugar drink with 50g of sugar and then sitting around for an hour (during which you can't eat anything or even have a drink of water) and then they take your blood.  The drink was pretty gross and they make you drink it pretty fast.  However, the worst part of the test was sitting around the lab for an hour.  It turns out Saturday morning must be when all the crazy people show up for their lab work.  Call me anti-social, but at 9am on a Saturday morning I am not really keen on complete strangers asking if I want to see their scars/rashes and./or discussing how there is some vast hospital conspiracy to steal our identities and that is why the nurse asks you for your social security number.  Good times. 

I also passed my blood antibody test, so that means that even if baby Bagel has a different Rh factor in her blood, my immune system hasn't picked up on that yet.  We go back to the doctor next Friday for our 28 week check up, so that is when I should get the shot that will make sure no antibodies develop during the rest of the pregnancy.  It will be nice to have one less thing to worry about!

Sadly, I failed the hemoglobin test, so I've developed a bit of pregnancy-related anemia.  We knew this was a possibility since I've had some issues with anemia before and we really don't eat much red meat at all.  This, luckily has a relatively easy fix.  I just need to take some over the counter iron pills for the next few months.  No big deal.  Overall the test results were really good news!

In other news, we're starting to get our ducks in a row for getting Bagel taken care of when I have to go back to work.  Last week a group of my colleagues offered to donate their unused sick time to me so that I could extend my maternity leave through the end of the spring semester.  It turns out that HR won't allow that, but I was really touched by the offer.  We feel pretty lucky that after only being here for a year, we have so many good friends that are excited for us and for the baby. 

Since I only have so much sick time/maternity leave, Bagel will end up in daycare a couple of days a week starting when she is about three months old.  I am obviously a little nervous about leaving our baby with strangers, but as Jeremy points out, I don't even like to leave the cats.  We visited the daycare that we'll probably end up using on Monday and it was pretty amazing.  Everyone there was really nice and really involved with the kids.  Each baby gets their own dedicated crib and there are lots of activities for even the youngest kids.  We only saw one or two of the babies frantically trying to make a break for it, so we figured that was a good sign.  They also have an amazing playground and all of the kids get outside either to play or take a walk at least once a day.  Now our biggest worry is that Bagel will like it there so much that she'll never want to come home :)

Of course the one problem with daycare is the waitlist.  we assumed we were totally on top of things because heck - our baby isn't even here yet - we won't need care until the last week of March.  It turns out that we only have a "pretty good chance" of being "close to the top of the list" by March.  Yikes!  We're keeping our fingers crossed that it all works out.  Otherwise we'll have to find a temporary solution until a spot opens up.  Luckily working on a college campus means there are lots of potential babysitters nearby. 

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Test Time

This morning I am up bright and early to head over to the hospital for my glucose tolerance test - do I know how to have fun on the weekend or what!  This is a standard second-trimester test to make sure I'm not developing gestational diabetes.  Jeremy was really worried I was going to have to fast before the test and was trying to come up with an excuse to be out of town so that he didn't have to drive a hungry/grumpy Kate to the lab.  Luckily, the first round of the test doesn't require a fast, so he is off the hook - he gets to sleep in. 

I also have to get another blood-type test.  I'm AB- and Jeremy is A+.  Since I am Rh- and there is a possibility that the baby is Rh+ we have to periodically test to make sure that my blood isn't developing antibodies to Rh+ stuff.  At our next doctor's appointment, I'll get a shot to make sure that I don't develop any antibodies during the rest of the pregnancy.  It is one of those things that isn't dangerous for this baby, but if I develop antibodies now and we end up having another baby, it could be bad for that baby.  Jeremy claims that this one is all my fault because he is the one with "normal blood" and I have the "freak blood" given that his blood type is much more common than mine.  I claim I'm just special, but I don't think he's buying it :)

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

99 Days to go!

Today was actually a productive day in terms of preparing for Baby Gottwood.  We went to the benefits fair at work (do we know how to have fun or what?).  We got lots of great information about how to sign baby up for health insurance, and how to estimate how much to put in our health and childcare savings accounts.  We also called a childcare center that was recommended by one of my colleagues.  Her little boy is almost 6 now and he started at this center as an infant.  He is super-smart and adorable, so hopefully some of that will rub off on the Gottwood baby if we send her to the same place.  It also has the benefit of being very flexible in terms of having both full time and hourly care and is very close to campus so if something happens, I'll be able to get there in just a couple of minutes.  We're going to visit on Monday to check the place out and then if we like it we can apply to put baby Bagel on the waitlist.  The same center has a really good preschool program, so if we end up liking it, Bagel could stay there until kindergarten (well, during the day at least, we'll let her come home after work and weekends) :)

Since we were already on a roll, we also signed up for childbirth classes.  Our hospital offers online childbirth classes so we are going to go with that option - it seemed like the best way to fit yet another thing into our busy schedules.  After we complete the course we can go to the hospital to tour the birth center and to meet with a nurse. 

It seems like there can be an endless list of baby to-dos, but at least we got a couple of biggies checked off today.  Bagel with have health care and someone other than the cats to take care of her while we are at work - what more could a baby want?

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

The countdown begins!

I have a little program on my work computer that updates every day when I log in.  It gives me the number of days/weeks/months that I have been pregnant along with what the baby should be up to today (the answer to that question: not much besides getting MUCH BIGGER).  This program also estimates how many days are left in my pregnancy.  Today it says there are 100 days left to go.  I guess that means it is time to start the final countdown to Bagel's arrival!  We sure have a lot to do in the next 100 days ...

Friday, September 10, 2010

It's Official!

Today at the doctor's office we got official confirmation - baby Gottwood is a girl - the doctor is 100% sure.  Or as sure as you can be after trying to make out minuscule baby-parts on a grainy ultrasound.  We're excited to finally know - it makes the baby seem a little more like a real person :)  Today marks 25 weeks, so only 15 more to go until we get to meet her! 

Today at the doctor we also got talked into getting some immunizations: flu and Tdap so that we stay healthy for the baby.  The shots coupled with a few nights of not-enough-sleep have left me pretty drained.  I'm heading home for an early bedtime tonight!

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Cleaning Advice from the House Husband

This week, I was cleaning the counter in the kitchen and turned to Jeremy and said "Can you put sponges on the shopping list?  This one is falling apart."  Jeremy replied "Well, maybe if you didn't make us use the sponges so often, they would last longer."