Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Finally some progress on my house repairs

Three and a half months have gone by since Hurricane Ike. I talked to the roofing company and they're going ot deliver the new shingles on Jan 6 and plan to roof our house on Jan 8-9. My fencing guy called last night and he's going to start on Friday. My mortgage company also called yesterday and said I didn't sign one form and so they won't send me my insurance check until I do. Grrr. Of everything I have to deal with, the freaking mortgage company is giving me the most grief. I hate the fact that they are holding my insurance check and insist on all this damn paperwork before they dole out the money.

It's 4 am and I'm awake

I guess that's what happens when you go to bed at 9. Actually, I've been up since 3, and I'm already had my morning eggs, an oatmeal muffin, an orange and a glass of almond milk. I have a feeling my whole day is going to be screwed up now. Oh well.

I'm proud that I got a few things accomplished yesterday. Put drawer pulls on the drawers in the garage and changed the tire on the wheel barrow. I'd love to put up pegboard on one wall of the garage for my tools, but I think I may ask my dad to do that when he visits in a couple months. My rationale is that he'll probably be bored and want something to do. :)

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Had my glucose test this morning

Everyone was right. The drink they give you is disgusting. Mine tasted like limeade. The first 3rd wasn't all that bad, really. The second 3rd I had to work to get it down. The last 3rd only went down by sheer willpower. Blech. Then you sit around for an hour before they draw your blood. I won't find out the results until Friday. The nurse was nice, but they had not written on my paper work that I was supposed to get 2 vials of blood drawn. One for the glucose test, and the other for standard blood work, including anemia. I mentioned that to her, unfortunately AFTER she had taken the needle out of my vein. She apologized and proceeded to stick the other arm for the 2nd vial. Luckily she was very good and neither of the needle sticks hurt.

Asked my doctor about a couple of questions I had. The main one was my heart rate. It seems like it's been racing lately. I walked into Kroger's and just walking into the store, my heart was pounding. So I sat at the automatic blood pressure thing to see what my blood pressure was. It was 117/72 but my heart rate was 95! Today in the doctor's office, my bp was 106/62, so I obviously don't have a bp problem yet.

The doctor said it was very normal for a pregnant woman's heart rate to speed up because of the extra work it's doing. She said 95 wasn't bad at all, but if it went to 110-120 and wouldn't go back down, I should go to the ER. I also asked about my exercising heart rate. I'd been trying to keep it to 140 or less because that was what I had read. I asked her if that was right, and she said yes. Actually, for me, she said it should probably be lower because of my age. She wants it to be 220-my age * 60 to 70%, so somewhere around 120. Man, that's like barely doing any work at all. (Actually, I just calcualted it. It's 108-126. That feels like I'm not even exercising!)

My weight gain is about on track. Looks like I gained about 3-4 pounds last month. A pound a week. Not bad for Christmas with a sweet tooth. Speaking of which, it was really hard to resist the temptation to stop and get a donut on my way home from the doctor's office this morning. Silly, I know. But my sweet tooth has been going crazy lately, and I've had to abstain from sugar for the last 5 days including Christmas. But I was good. I came home and made a bowl of oatmeal with a bit of peanut butter and cocoa in it.

Now I'm off to contemplate improving the storage in the closet in the baby's room.

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Merry Christmas!

Hope everyone had a wonderful day. I had a very nice day. Nice and quiet and fun.

Apparently I drove Daniel crazy and he just had to give me my present on Christmas eve. I don't mind. I got something really cool! I got a Kindle! Awesome! I'd wanted one ever since they came out, but I didn't figure I'd get one for at least another 2-3 years. Within about 10 minutes of opening it up, I had it connected, registered to me and had bought a book and was able to read it on my Kindle. It's pretty darn slick.

So far, I've downloaded a bunch of first chapters of a whole bunch of books, and I've got a free 2-week subscription to 3 different blogs, to see how much I like them. They've only got access to about 21 magazines and about 15-20 newspapers. I don't tend to read newspapers, but it would be nice to look at individual editions sometimes. The Houston Chronicle costs $0.50/issue. I can also get Newsweek for a really cheap price.

It's also connected to my Amazon wish list, so I can browse the store through the same wireless that cell phones use, all free of charge. If something strikes my fancy, I can see if the book is available, or I can check Wikipedia for a word or phrase that interests me. I can even check the weather whenever I want to.

It's not a multimedia device. It's strictly a reader, but I love to read. I have a feeling I'll be spending lots more money on e-books now.

I got Daniel 3 movies that he wanted, plus some Kona coffee from Hawaii and a couple of shirts. I think the only time he gets new shirts is when I buy them for him at Christmas. :)

It was nice out today. Overcast, but fairly warm. Went for a couple of walks and had a couple of snoozes. For dinner, we had our fried turkey. Eh, can't say it was as good as all that. Wasn't any better or juicier than roasting our own bird at home, but now we've tried one. Maybe it would be better fresh. We picked it up on Tuesday and kept it in the frig until tonight. I also made a great butternut squash and cranberry dish that was delicious. Took the place of desert. Which is good, since I need to stop eating sugar until after next Tuesday and my gestational diabetes test. Bleah. Oh well, I think I'm tired of sugar and junk food and chocolate for a while.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Christmas Eve Eve

This year we ordered a fried turkey from our favorite BBQ place in Alvin. Everyone has been telling us that a fried turkey is the best and so delicious. Not wanting to deal with 5 gallons of used oil or potentially burning the house down, when we noticed that Joe's BBQ was selling fried turkeys, we thought that sounded like the ideal solution.

So tonight we went to pick it up, and coincidentally had dinner at Joe's too. Yummy. They have fantastic ribs!

Came home and got Daniel to play the new Prince of Persia while I finished wrapping Christmas presents. I had a little help...

From Dora:
From Misc Blog Pics

And then from Nomia:
From Misc Blog Pics

And I took this one of Nomia the other night. It doesn't fit anywhere, but I think it just looks hilarious. Looks like she's going "FEED ME!!! NOW! OR I SHALL CONSUME YOU, PITIFUL HUMAN"
From Misc Blog Pics

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Such wierd weather.

I know. Everyone in the US is saying that, or they're complaining about horrible winter storm that just came through.

We had snow last week, and last night, we slept with the windows open. Yesterday, I had the AC on in my car, and today, I'm lounging around in shorts.

Nope, can't complain about winter weather in Texas.

We're going on a babymoon!

We booked a vacation the other day, our last one as a couple. We're going back to Vegas. It's one of our favorite places to go, and we got really good deals. I guess Vegas is having the same recession problems as everyone else. We never go to gamble anyway. We go for the fun, the shows, the people watching. This time we're staying at the MGM Grand. We picked it because we got a package deal for an upgraded room from Expedia, and it's got a monorail stop inside. I know it's a huge hotel, but I'm hoping we don't have to walk too horribly far to get to stuff inside. To prepare, I bought a new pair of Birkenstocks so I could wear those in Las Vegas. My last pair was incredible. This new pair will require a bit of breaking in though, so I'll be wearing them for a couple of weeks at home.

Can't wait!

Thursday, December 18, 2008


Ever commit to do something, and then forget all about it?

I promised to give a talk on recycling at work to one of our orgs. Made the promise early last week and the talk is today. Yesterday, one of the org guys called me to ask if there was anything he could do to help me get ready for my talk today. You should have seen my face. I'm glad I was on the phone, because my face said Oh CR#$! I forgot!

So I chatted with him a bit to get some details about the audience and what they wanted to hear. I didn't want to tell him he'd already done the most valuable thing he could, by reminding me about it.

Anyway, I put together a rough draft in about an hour, and spent another hour finding pictures and polishing it up. Sent it to him last night to see if it was what they were wanting. Whew. Hopefully not many changes to make to it this morning.

I'd been doing so well on all my work stuff, too. But it's just getting to be too much, especially with the contract stuff I manage. That office is going to be hurting bad when I go out on maternity leave.

Friday, December 12, 2008

Shuttle Flyover

The space shuttle was flying back from Edwards to Kennedy yesterday, and it's flight path took it over JSC. Someone got a call that it was near so we headed to the window.

From the 7th floor, we saw the plane with the shuttle on top fly low over Ellington Field, then curve around. Everyone ran outside next. I didn't even have time to grab my coat, and it was cold outside. But it was incredible.

The plane flew in a big circle over JSC and we could see the shuttle fixed to the back. It was very low and the weather was perfectly clear. I was regretting the fact that I didn't have my camera, but it also gave me a chance just to watch it, instead of trying to take a picture.

The plane circled around again, and this time, it fly right overhead! It was so close I could see the individual tiles on the belly of the shuttle. Everyone cheered, then we headed back inside to have dessert for our holiday lunch.

Afterward, some of my friends with cameras sent me some pictures. Here they are.

The shuttle on its first circle around JSC:
From Misc Blog Pics

Here it is on the second pass. From where I was standing, it actually flew directly overhead. These pictures are from a friend in a different building.
From Misc Blog Pics

Here is a picture of it taking off from Edward's Air Force Base Thursday morning.
From Misc Blog Pics

It Snowed!!

Yes, snow in Houston!! Give me a bit more time later today and I'll have the pictures up to prove it.

I took the day off work to go shopping north of Houston with some ladies from work. We knew it would be cold, windy and wet. However, we did not expect it would actually turn first to sleet, then to big fluffy flakes late in the afternoon. So we ended up going home a couple hours sooner than we usually do, in case the traffic was bad. I slept most of the way home, but it was still a long ride.

Daniel was sort of sad he didn't see snow. It was raining at home, south of Houston. Later that evening, I looked outside, and the ground looked odd. I thought maybe it was frost, since we occasionally get frost here. Then I looked out back, and we had over an inch of snow on all the plants and patio furniture!

You can tell we're from the north. We heard kids outside screaming and playing. The next day I heard everyone talking about going out and throwing snowballs and making (tiny) snowmen. Daniel and I looked at the snow, said, yep it's pretty, and went back inside. We've already done enough snow stuff. We're content to look at it from inside the cozy house.

UPDATE (12/20/08)
Yes, I'm lazy with posting my pictures. But here are my snow pictures from last week.

Our front yard:
From Misc Blog Pics

Snow on a couple of our palm trees. Wierd.
From Misc Blog Pics

From Misc Blog Pics

Tuesday, December 09, 2008

Just back from the doctor's office

Had my regular monthly appointment and everything is fine. Gained 4 pounds last month. Could be worse. I'm doing better with my diet and exercising more, so hopefully I'll keep the weight gain in check. And hey, this morning, I passed up the Starbucks peppermint mocha that was calling my name, along with the Shipley's donut place I drove by when I was starving. I came home and had a cranberry oatmeal muffin and a glass of water. Small steps.

This was the first time she measured my stomach/uterus. It was 24 inches on the tape measure, which she said was exactly where it was supposed to be. Doesn't mean anything to me, but if she's happy, I'm happy.

Tonight at work we have an interview with a guy coming in for the open water specialist position in my office. He's flying in from Florida and won't get here until 4:00, so we'll be doing the interview late. Poor guy gets a group interview with everyone in the office, which right now is 4 of us.

I am so looking forward to tomorrow. The women at work take a day off and go shopping in Spring, north of Houston. It's a cute, kitschy little town with lots of neat shops. Unfortunately, it looks like the bottom's going to drop out of the temperature tonight and it'll be cold and windy tomorrow. Oh well. If I run out of steam, I'll go sit in the coffee shop and drink hot chocolate for a bit while the others shop.

Friday, December 05, 2008

Good luck to my Mother-In Law

She's having knee surgery today. Wish her the best.

I'm fighting a losing battle

As far as my fitness goes. Of course, I'm sure it didn't help that I spent about a month eating junk food and not exercising at all. but I finally got my expanding butt to the gym this week, and I'm trying to eat more veggies, beans and lean protein and cut back on the sugar.

For the upper body workouts, I finally switched to machines for a lot of the chest exercises instead of free weights. I don't want to lie on my back anymore. Those aren't so bad. But it's the unexpected things that get you. Like doing assisted pullups or cable pushdowns and realize that you don't have the ab strength you used to. My core strength is still good, but it's definitely going down as I can't rely on my abs as much.

I did a pretty normal one- hour workout Wed at lunch, split between the elliptical and upper body lifting. I didn't think I'd worked out too hard, but after lunch, I turned into a zombie. I just sat and stared at my computer, and even writing an email was too much work. I stuck it out as long as I could, then finally went home and went to bed for an hour.

Guess I'll take advantage of all the naps I can get now.

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Pregnancy Update

Well, since my mom is wanting to see pictures of me, I'll be brave and post a few.

Here's me at 17 weeks:
From Baby

Me at 19 weeks:
From Baby

And me at 24 weeks at the Ren Fair:
From Baby

I really don't feel like I have much of a bump yet. Just a very thick midsection. Oh well.

Yes, I'm wearing the same clothes. I don't have a whole lot of clothes I can wear right now. And I just ordered some new warmer clothes for the winter, such as we have here in Texas. Ordered them from Old Navy online. They have free returns, so if I don't like them, not a problem to send them back. I'm buying more and more stuff online these days. It's getting very easy. And ordering from Amazon is just way too freakin' easy.

Just for Carolyn, here's a picture of the baby quilt I made years ago:
From Baby

I'm working on my baby registry. I'll post the link to it soon, I promise. I'm trying to figure out what we really need. I know I don't want a lot of plastic, and no soft plastic toys he can put in his mouth. Mostly organic, when I can, but if it's too pricy, I'm not going to sweat it.

Happy Thanksgiving Weekend

Hope everyone had a good time. I did.

Took off early on Wednesday, just because. Thursday was quiet for us. It always is, since there's only the 2 of us, and we're not into football. Had a nice quiet dinner. It always seems strange to me, how you can spend hours preparing for dinner, and then eat it in 15 minutes.

Friday, we went to the Texas Renaissance Festival, north of Houston. Had a good time. Here's a link to the library with some of the pictures there.
Texas Ren Fair 2008

Mainly I got pictures of the parade at noon. I wanted to ride an elephant, but I wasn't thinking, and I work a skirt that day. Couldn't ride an elephant in that! We saw a bird show that showcased lots of different raptors, owls and vultures. The hawks were free flying around the stage, attacking a leather bag they used as a training prop. We also saw a carillion show. It's a 4.5 ton instrument made of cast bronze bells. The player would ring the bells using a sort of piano set up. He'd hit the keys and it would ring the bells. He played "Ring, Silver Bells" (Can't remember the name of the song, but it's one of my favorites), Carmina Burana, and one other I didn't recognize. It was very, very cool, but it was amazingly loud. It woke up the baby, and he started kicking.

I didn't find much I wanted to buy there, but it was fun looking at all the shops. At the end of the day, there was one shop I wanted to go back to, a candle shop in Polonia. He was selling hand-made beeswax candles. Next door was a rock and jewelry shop that I had missed the first time through. How did I miss that!? So we wandered through, and I found some amazing deals. I got a huge piece of mahogany obsidian for $24! I also found a nice large emerald crystal for $3. It's not clear, but I bet I could make a nice cab out of it.

On Saturday, I took the obsidian into the Houston gem workshop and showed it off. Everyone said I got a fantastic deal. Rusty said he'd have happily paid $100 for the piece, and we was salivating all day long asking if he could buy some of it from me. I told him he could when I was done slabbing what I wanted. I spent hours slabbing the thing and only got about a quarter of the way through it.

I had a very productive day at the shop. Ended up finishing 6 cabs, and Rusty gave me one he had done, but didn't like. I had taken a bunch of stuff to the shop with me, so I'd have a lot of options, and I ended up coming home with twice as much as I started with, because Rusty kept giving me extra slabs of stuff he had. Some very nice plume agate and west George (?) petrified wood.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Still not used to tropical winters

Such a nice morning that I'm wearing shorts and a t-shirt and have the windows open. There's lots of things I don't like about Texas, but winters ain't one of them.

I was so productive at the gem shop yesterday. Cut and polished 3 cabs completely: tear-drop sodalite, large oval moss agate, and a diamond blue tigers eye. They came out very nice, especially the moss agate. Then I spent about an hour and a half working on a Boulder opal. It's so soft, I was worried about chipping it. Actually, I was worried about ruining it. I've had this piece for probably 2 or 3 years, and never really did anything with it. Finally decided it wasn't worth anything just sitting in my closet, so started to play with it. Another guy was working on Boulder opal yesterday too, so we compared notes. Still not finished with it. I'll have to take it back next Saturday to see if I can get anything out of it.

I hope I'm doing peeling from my misadventure with the sun last weekend. Bleah. Bad enough to have a burn and peel, but for it to be on your face is the worst.

Today is a nice day to stay at home and do stuff around the house. And work some more on my baby registry. I did manage to convince Daniel to go with me to Babies-R-Us to look at car seats and strollers. I had to bribe him by taking him to dinner afterward, because he said it was too early to worry about that sort of stuff. I don't care. I'm trying to figure all this stuff out. I never knew strollers and car seats were so complicated. Sheesh.

We also had a nice get-together at work on Friday. Someone brought it a copy of Wall-E, and we had a potluck lunch. I volunteered to bring a salad because I knew everyone else would bring desserts. Yep, mine was the only green thing on the table. Everyone loved it though. I made that and a blueberry oatmeal cake, both from my Eating Well When You're Expecting book, and they were both great.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Quantum of Solace Rocks!

I believe that Daniel Craig is the best Bond ever. He's even better than Sean Connery. I loved QoS, although I thought the plot was a little shaky and difficult to follow. I like how Craig makes you feel every single hit and punch. He doesn't shrug them off, and it really feels like a spy movie for the 21st century.

Now, I still like the old Bond movies; they have their charm. But I'm definitely loving this new direction for the series.

Such a successful recycling event!

On Saturday, my work hosted an e-waste recycling event for the south Houston area. We were one of 5 locations around Houston, and we thought it would be a big turnout. Wow, we had no idea!

The morning got off to a hectic start. The forklifts were an hour late showing up, so we couldn't unload the supplies from the trucks. The guys finally resorted to pulling out pallets by hand.

The event didn't officially start until 9:00 am, and by 9, we already had 66 cars come through. By the time it ended at 4, we had to turn cars away, and we had about 1,500 cars come through to drop off stuff. The wait was about an hour long, so kudos to everyone who waited. We ended up filling 12 tractor trailers full of e-waste, with an estimated weight of 400,000 pounds. Absolutely amazing.

The weather was good, too. It was sunny, but chilly and very windy. Unfortunately, that meant I got a bad sunburn. I was up before dawn and forgot about sunscreen, then it was so cool that I didn't realize I was getting burned. Daniel called me raccoon girl all weekend because my face was red except around my eyes where my sunglasses had been.

Overall though, it was great. I hope we can do it again next year.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Link to Countdown To Victory

I was wandering through CNN's site and came across a link to Countdown To Victory. The first video is of Grant Park at 11:00 Eastern Time when the crowd was counting down the seconds until the polls on the west coast closed. They start cheering, and you can hear the second that the crowd realizes Obama won, and the cheering changes from normal to Hell, yeah, our guy just won!!

Watching it, that moment still makes me smile and even still bring a tear to my eye. How sappy is that? Maybe I can blame pregnancy hormones.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

A collection of miscellaneous thoughts

On Barack Obama:
Yeah, I know I'm a week late on this, but I have to say something about Barack Obama's win. I got so tired of hearing about him being black. Yes, it's historic, but I didn't vote for him because he was black. I voted for him because I thought he was the best candidate for the job and because he stood for the things I believe in. If there are other reasons to be happy, so be it. But that's why I voted for Obama.

On other politics:
How the hell is Alaska's Ted Stevens even still close to being reelected as Senator after being convicted of multiple felonies? How???? What is wrong with the voters in Alaska?

PS: It sucks living in Texas and knowing your vote never counts. Not even at the local level.

On Fallout 3:
I knew I was resisting Daniel getting me to try his new video game. He kept raving about it, so I finally tried it Sunday. I was right. It ate my brain. I played it most of the day on Sunday, Monday and Tuesday. There went my 4 day weekend, but I don't care. I had fun. Besides, it rained all day on Monday and Tuesday. 5 inches total.

On Whole Foods:
That's such a fun store. Shame it's so very expensive to shop there. We went there Saturday and had fun wandering around. I picked up a bag of apples for a good price. Too good to be true. Turned out most of the apples were soft and couldn't wait for my to eat them over the week. So I ended up making cinnamon applesauce, and then I canned most of it. It wasn't as hard as I thought it would be. I got out my preserving cookbook, and I had all the equipment ready to go. Had all the jars and lids and had bought a nice big canning pot last year. So now I have 5 jars of homemade cinnamon (very yummy) applesauce in my pantry. That was fun. I may have to experiment with other recipes in that book.

On lapidary:
I learned to use the rock saw at the mineral shop on Saturday. Ended up cutting a whole bunch of slabs of tiger's eye and a couple of slabs of malachite. People can be so funny and nice there. Everyone just trades around extra raw stones. Guy gave me a piece of blue tiger's eye, and then someone else gave me a piece of Botswana agate. I traded them some of my tiger's eye, since I had so much.

On new vacuum cleaners:
We finally broke down and bought a new vacuum cleaner. Found a great deal on a bagless from $80 and free shipping. We used it today, and holy cow. We had to empty the container after every room because it was filled (FILLED!) with cat hair. I can't believe there was so much crap still in the carpet. Either this is really good, or our old one was really, really bad. Maybe both.

My great debate tonight: Fallout 3 or make a carrot cake. A healthy version from my Eating Well When You're Expecting book. Full of very yummy recipes.

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

Obama Wins!!!!!!!!


I'm so, so happy. Finally, I feel like anyone really can grow up to be President.

Monday, November 03, 2008

Halloween is awesome

I love Halloween. I love all the kids coming to the door and handing candy out to them. We live in a great neighborhood for that. Lots of kids, most of them still little and having lots of fun. We gave out at least 9 bags of candy, and we only gave each kid 2 pieces: a piece of chocolate and a sugary candy like Smarties or Twizzlers. My poor scaredy cat was hiding all night in the couch because the doorbell kept ringing. I think she finally reappeared around midnight.

I'm not much for costumes for myself. I wanted to get a t-shirt with a pumpkin painted on the belly and with a logo that says Pumpkin Smuggler, but ran out of time.

Friday, October 31, 2008

And it's a....


We found out last week at our ultrasound. I tried to keep it a secret. Last about 2 days. :) Now we have to think of a name, but we're in no hurry to do that. Every time I think of a name, it's for a girl. Why is it so hard to think of boy names?

I still refuse to repaint the guest bedroom, aka soon-to-be-nursery. I'll wait until he grows up and asks "Why are the walls purple, mommy?" Then I'll let him figure out what color he wants it to be. Subject to parental veto.

Monday, October 20, 2008

Ultrasound Pictures

I totally forgot to put the pictures up from the ultrasound on Friday. Here's the best two:

Profile at 18 weeks:
From Baby

Picture of two tiny feet:
From Baby

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Big Ultrasound on Friday; Rotten Clinic

I had originally been going to the hospital in Galveston for some of my labwork, but the hospital got hit really hard by Hurricane Ike. So I had to go to the Pearland clinic for my genetic counseling and ultrasound.

We got lost on the way there and had to rush lunch. I ended up not even eating because I didn't like my sandwich. My appointment was at 2 for the genetics counseling, followed by the ultrasound at 3. They kept us waiting in the main waiting room for over an hour. I went up to the reception twice to ask what was wrong and to make sure they had me on the waiting list.

Finally they move a whole group of us to a back waiting room, but that did nothing to improve the situation. Now there's just as many people in an even smaller room. And this is the only clinic I've been in that didn't have any magazines, and I forgot to bring in a book.

After 2.5 hours, I was wandering around stretching my legs. I stopped by the nurses' station to look at the schedule and saw my name on it. Finally talked to a nurse and told her I was still waiting for my genetics appointment, and what was going on? She got a worried look on her face and went down the hallway. When she came back, she told me all the genetics counselors had gone home.

That's when I lost it. I was tired, hungry, angry and frustrated. I started crying in the hallway about how I was supposed to figure out if we were going to get an amnio before the ultrasound and now we couldn't do that. The nurse asked if I wanted to reschedule and I blew up at her. Of course I'm not going to reschedule. I took off the afternoon from work and I've been sitting here doing nothing for 3 hours! Why would I want to subject myself to this AGAIN?

Maybe it was because I had a meltdown, but they took us back into the ultrasound room right after that. The tech spent the next hour looking at blobs on the screen and telling me everything looked okay.

The doctor came in, and Daniel yelled at her because of the whole genetics thing. She talked to us a little bit about it, but it's not the same. She said everything looked okay except they found one soft marker for Downs. The femur bone was a little shorter than they like to see. We couldn't be sure of the sex because the umbilical cord was in the way.

On the way out, we found an administrator, and Daniel let him have it too. I'm glad he was there, because I was in no mood to deal with anyone right then. What should have been an exciting visit turned into a hellish one because of their screwups.

Even worse, they never cleaned the bathrooms all afternoon, and the whole place just looked dingy. I wouldn't trust them to give me an amnio there now, anyway.

So that was a rotten end to a good week. On Friday morning, I gave a big presentation I'd been working on for a month, and everyone said it went really well. So I was in a good mood in the morning. Stupid clinic.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

And the verdict on our roof is...

We need to get it replaced. That's what our insurance adjuster said. I'm actually happy. I wasn't happy with the idea of patching it, but he got up there and tromped around for a while. He also poked around our attic, the backyard with the blown-over fence and shattered pillars, and our water-stained ceilings.

After all that, he said that his report would show we needed carpet cleaning, repainting for a textured ceiling, a new roof, 80 feet of new fence and a new set of patio pillars. Awesome! I didn't even know some of that qualified. It's funny that I made this big list of food we threw out, and he said that was personal property, not building, so it had a separate deductible. Since food is the only thing on it, we won't meet that one. But we will on the building, and that's the most important one.

It'll be a week before he gets us the report, and in the meantime, I have to search Google for the cast stone pillars to find out replacement costs. He said there was a place in Austin that sold them, so I'll look for them tomorrow.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

I love long weekends

Somehow, having that extra Monday off is just a fantastic feeling.

We were busy this weekend. Last week, I admitted a desire for Ikea's meatball lunch. Silly, yes, but Daniel said he'd had the same desire. We also needed some new bedside tables and thought we could probably find something decent at Ikea. It's on the north side of town, so it's not someplace we normally go on a whim.

So we had a pleasant morning of shopping around and having lunch. We did a lot of window shopping, and actually found a nice pair of nightstands we both liked. Wouldn't you know, they were out of stock! However, I did manage to find a nice rocking chair to use with the baby. Daniel put it together, and we took bets as to how long it would take one of the cats to claim it. We both lost. It took 3 days.

Sunday I was still restless, plus I needed some new clothes badly. I'd been looking at Kohl's and Target, but didn't like any of the clothes they had. So I decided to buck up and go to the mall. Sears was a bust so I tried the actual maternity store in the mall.

It was great! The lady there helped me find a new bra and I found lots of shirts that actually looked good on me, looked professional, and fit right. Daniel winced when I told him how much it was, but I said it was going to be my entire wardrobe through next spring, so that wasn't so bad.

Daniel had school on Monday, and for some reason, I woke up early. I hope this isn't a trend. So I made biscuits and gravy, with everything made from scratch. Then I decided that I shouldn't spend my free day playing video games, I should actually do something productive. So I cleaned the house. I did all the stuff that Daniel never sees. He does a pretty good job keeping the house clean, but he never thinks about cleaning the top of the washer and dryer, or getting the cat hair off the ceiling fans.

I also got serious about cleaning out the storage closet. I'd been using it for all my craft stuff over the years. I got rid of a bunch of stuff, but some of it's still too hard to part with. Like an autographed painting by a world-class fantasy artist, even though I don't have it framed and wouldn't know where to hang it. Still, it's a start, and I've still got many months to sort stuff out. I'm gonna have a heck of a lot of stuff to give to the charity thrift store.

Thursday, October 09, 2008

I heard the heartbeat!

I had another checkup at the doctor's office yesterday. I guess I've entered the time frame of the short and sweet visit. Pee in a cup, get weighed, see the doctor for 5 minutes. The coolest thing was getting to hear the baby's heartbeat on a Doppler machine. Sounded very cool. Sort of a swishing thump-thump. Made me smile.

And just like I figured, she gave me a warning about gaining too much weight. I'm blaming my clothes. Because the scale at her office weighed me 7 pounds heavier than I do at home. Still, I know I need to watch it.

Oh, we got DirectTV last night. The installer came out, and it took him a good 3 hours to install the dish and all the receivers. Gonna take me a long time to get used to the new system. We had to put it on a pole in the side yard because we have too many trees in our yard to get a good signal anywhere except that one place. The only thing I'm disappointed about is the loss of Entertainment on Demand. I was hoping to be able to browse movies on Showtime On Demand

Monday, October 06, 2008

Doing good so far in the pregnancy and movie reviews

I have to give kudos again to the "Eating Well When You're Expecting" book. Every recipe in there that I've made is great. Last night I made beef and barley stew, and it was fantastic. Took a couple hours prep and stewing time, but that was no problem. It said to add half a cup of barley, and I thought that didn't look like enough and I was debating adding more. After the 30 minute cooking time, I'm very glad I didn't. It was just enough. Another thing I like about the recipes is that they make just 1, 2 or at most 4 servings. Very handy when there's only 2 of us.

For breakfast this morning, I had a broiled grapefruit and stuffed french toast, again from EWWYE. It had whole grain bread stuffed with peanut butter and apple slices, then soaked and fried as french toast. Sprinkled it with a touch of powdered sugar instead of syrup and it was delicious.

I am definitely keeping that book for a recipe book for years to come.

Another good note is that I was finally feeling well enough to do some light exercise last night. I pulled out the Wii Fit, which is so much fun. It even weighs you, and to my relief I had only gained 1 pound in 2 weeks. I was worried that with all my bad eating habits, I'd gained too much, but it looks like I'm not doing too badly.

The Wii keeps telling me I'm overweight and I should lose weight. It lets me put in a goal, so I keep doing a 1 pound gain for 2 weeks. Feels weird to put in a weight-gain goal.

Caught some movies on HBO over the weekend. Finally watched The Silver Surfer. Oh my god, that was a horrible movie. Every cliche you can imagine and enormous plot holes. Normally I'm very forgiving, but even I couldn't get over the problems in that movie.

Next I saw The Seeker. I was really excited when it came out initially, because I adore the books it's based on. But it got poor reviews, so I never bothered to watch it. After seeing it last night, I was sorely disappointed. It bore only the faintest resemblance to the book and was terribly scattered. Very bad movie.

Saw most of Interview With a Vampire. I can't say it holds up very well. Maybe it wasn't so good when I saw it the first time, years ago. But my goodness, what a whiny, emo movie. I wanted to kick Brad Pitt part way through just to give him some emotions instead of that flat monotone he kept talking in.

Tonight, hopefully I'll get to watch A Clockwork Orange. We downloaded it from the PS3 network as a movie rental. Started it yesterday at lunch. I think it finally finished downloading at midnight.

Thursday, October 02, 2008

Healthy Pumpkin Muffins

I got the book "Eating Well When You're Expecting" and it has some great recipes in it. I plan to keep using it for many years to come. Since it's fall, I was in the mood for something pumpkin-ish, and these muffins did not disappoint.

The neat thing about her baked goods is that she substitutes frozen white grape juice concentrate for the sugar, to give you some extra nutrients. The recipe used a cup of whole wheat flour and a quarter cup of ground flaxseeds. The muffins are so moist and delicious, you can't tell it's whole wheat flour, and the flaxseeds aren't noticeable at all. The only thing I didn't like was the addition of chopped dried apricots. Normally I like them, but in this recipe, they seemed jarring everytime I got a bite of one in a muffin.

Since I had some light cream cheese and leftover pumpkin, I creamed the two together with a couple tablespoons of brown sugar. I would have added some maple extract, but I was out. A bit of vanilla and a sprinkle of cinnamon, and I had the best topping ever for my muffins.

I even had a bit of batter left over after I made the 12 muffin cups, and rather than throw it out, I thew it in a non-stick skillet and made a pumpkin pancake out of it. Turned out pretty good, although it wanted to burn on the bottom before it cooked all the way through.

I highly recommend this book just for the recipes alone.

Wednesday, October 01, 2008

Having a cold while pregnant is miserable

Having a cold is bad enough. But you can usually take enough drugs to alleviate your symptoms to get through the day. Not when you're pregnant. I can take plain Robitussin, cough drops, and tea with honey. I've been coughing now for a whole week, and I've taking 3 days of sick leave. I guess I'll have to actually go back into work tomorrow.

I talked to the nurse, and she said this cold going around is bad, and I can expect to keep coughing for another 4 or 5 days. Great. Hopefully, it won't turn into bronchitis, and hopefully I'm on the downhill side of this thing. I even broke down and bought a netti pot to use for my stuffed up sinuses. It's kinda gross, but it works great.

I've been so productive with my time at home too. I've caught up on Survivor, America's Toughest Jobs, and HBO's True Blood. It figures that as soon as HBO puts out another series I'm interested in, I'm about to switch to Showtime because we're changing to Verizon over Comcast. I also had the new Lego Batman game to play, and it's a lot of fun. So I kinda got a vacation, although it wasn't what I was planning. And I was still checking emails and doing a bit of work to keep up with stuff.

I must be feeling better, because I'm actually contemplating making some healthy muffins for breakfast tomorrow.

Hurricane Ike Pictures - Finally

I've been promising. So here they are. I guess they aren't as dramatic as the news pictures you've seen of Galveston and Bolivar peninsula, but it's my house, so it's pretty dramatic to me.

Here are some before and afters:

The soccer field near our house, before the storm and after. We got a lot of rain.

From Hurricane Ike

From Hurricane Ike

From Hurricane Ike

Next is the drainage creek/bayou behind our house.

From Hurricane Ike

From Hurricane Ike

My back yard before the storm:
From Hurricane Ike

And after:
From Hurricane Ike

From Hurricane Ike

From Hurricane Ike

And what it did to our patio:
From Hurricane Ike

Here's our neighbor's house. Their chimney got pushed away from the house. It was probably the worst damage I've seen, so I think we got off pretty light here.
From Hurricane Ike

We saw cars in the ditch
From Hurricane Ike

An empty Wal-mart
From Hurricane Ike

Lots of destroyed boats and marinas
From Hurricane Ike

And lots of lines for ice and water.
From Hurricane Ike

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Highs and Lows

It's Wednesday, September 24 and we finally got cable and internet back!!!! Hurray. I feel like I'm connected to the world again!! I had connectivity at work, but it's not really the same.

I still haven't had a chance to get my pictures uploaded. I'll work on that tomorrow. I'm just too worn out to do it tonight.

My diet has been absolutely awful for the last two weeks. Eating stuff from the refrigerator, especially the melting ice cream. Then whatever we could scrounge up for the grill when we didn't have power. Hot dogs later, because it was the only thing in the grocery store that wasn't canned. Oh, don't even ask me about the tuna and baked beans experiment. Bleah. Then I caught a cold and went to the drug store for some cough drops. While there, I succumbed to a horrible attack of the snackies, buying a mini package of chocolate covered Oreos, a bag of Sun Chips (Hey, they're better than potato chips right?), and more chocolate covered mints.

I got a hair cut last night that lasted really late, so Daniel was hungry and thought I'd be home sooner than I was, so to make him happy, we went out for Mexican, and I had cheese dip. I think I ate the whole bowl of it. I didn't eat much of my dinner, so it's not all bad. At least, that's what I'm telling myself.

Tonight was the final straw. We finally gave up on FEMA putting a tarp on our roof and got a contractor to do it. They were recommended by our insurance company and they actually showed up quickly. The first company I called said there were 2000 people in front of me. Ugh. The roofers also gave me a good price to take down a tree that had lost over half its crown in the storm, so after they tarped the roof, they started on the tree.

Oh, that's also the same time I noticed our neighbor's roof had a tarp on it that said FEMA. D'oh! If we'd waited one more afternoon, they probably would have gotten to our house, and I could have saved $400. Well, one more thing to bill the insurance for.

I think one more night of a bowl of ice cream might be in my immediate future, and if the doctor yells at me for gaining too much weight, I'll just blame Ike.

Pictures coming soon, I promise. Tonight, I'm catching up on my tv, and researching the availability and cost of marble pillars. They were here when we bought the house, so I don't have a freakin' clue how much they cost or where to find them. *sigh*

I need a vacation. Oh wait, it got canceled because of Ike. *double sigh*

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Road to Recovery

Short post. I still don't have internet or cable at home. I got recalled to work today to help with the damage assessment. So I'm taking a couple of minutes to update this blog.

As I mentioned to Bob earlier, we survived with only a little bit of damage. We have shingles off in several places. Three large sections on two sides, and several single shingles gone from the back of the house. I went by the Army Corp of Engineers Blue Roof site yesterday and registered to get help putting tarps up on my roof. I have a feeling it's going to be months, if not a year, before I get my roof repaired.

We had an awful lot of tree debris in our yard. We had a small tree and several large bushes in the front get blown over, but we're trying to stake them back and hope they survive. A Rose of Sharon in the side yard fell against the window, but it didn't break. We lost a huge branch that could have fallen on the roof, but fortunately, fell sideways instead. The worst was a large shade tree in the back. That tree is cursed. First year, a big windstorm blew a big branch down on our patio. This summer, lightning hit it and took out another big branch. The hurricane blew down 2 more big branches. I think at this point, it's had it. We'll work to get that tree completely gone soon.

We did a lot of cleanup the last couple days. My boss came over with a chainsaw and helped us cut up most of the downed limbs, and we pulled them to the curb. I have a massive pile of tree debris now. Last night, I raked the smaller limbs and leaves into piles to be bagged tonight.

Our big score at the grocery store yesterday was a half-gallon of milk and 2 fresh zucchini. It's very eerie to walk into a big store and see almost nothing in the produce, meat, dairy or frozen section. The couple of things in there, you're not sure you actually want to buy. Why are there only 2 containers of cottage cheese sitting on this huge stretch of empty shelf? I think I'll pass.

We're also avoiding going out to eat for a while. One, the restaurants are packed by people who don't have power yet. Two, I'm still nervous that they don't have fresh food. If I can't find any, where are they getting their food? I can eat canned stuff a few more days. It's food, even if it's not gourmet. Or even particularly good.

As I mentioned, I got recalled to work today. The center is closed until Monday, the 22nd, but there are a lot of people here walking through the buildings, looking for damage, fixing stuff. My job today was to research any waivers or changes to environmental rules for the disaster here. Found a lot of interesting stuff, and even a couple of reg changes for transportation that should help us a lot. I have a feeling I'll be working Friday, Saturday and Sunday, then on into next week. I have to cancel my trip to Virginia next week. I kind of figured that would happen. I'm a little sad, but I can always go back for MarsCon next year.

I finally found a newspaper yesterday. It's the first pictures and news I've had other than the talk radio station. The pictures are astonishing to me. Wow. They are awful along the coast. Makes me realize how lucky we were inland. Even a little bit south and east of us, they had horrible flooding. Man, I'm really missing cable and internet now. It's been 5 days, an eternity when you're used to be as wired as we are.

Got the insurance claims in. The State Farm people I talked to on Monday weren't from Texas and didn't realize we have different insurance policies here. They filed my claim under homeowners, without realizing I have a separate policy for windstorm. So Wednesday, they called back and denied the claim. Needless to say, we were a little upset, especially since I was staring at my windstorm policy at the time. I called my agent and he said that was a common problem, but they were fixing it. He opened another claim for me and assured me we were covered and we should see an adjuster in a week or two.

I won't be able to post any of my pictures until my internet at home comes back. I hear that we're supposed to get it tomorrow, but with Comcast, who knows? I think Daniel is seriously considering going to DSL and Dish Network instead of Comcast. This is just the final straw that broke the camel's back.

Later. Send your prayers and thoughts to those who lost so much in Hurricane Ike. We are unscathed and relatively well off.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

12:06 pm, September 14th

(Michelle's friend Bob here, posting for Michelle over the phone.)

We survived! It was a very scary night. We lost power at 1 am. About 2 am the winds got very bad. At 2:30 the eye went over and it was very eerie. Backside hit us around 4:30 am and it was much worse than the front half. We lost five trees, one large and the rest small, as well as part of the fence.

And we will definitely need a new roof, as we lost most of the shingles. Based on the little walk we did, most of the houses suffered similar damage.

But overall we did not take very much damage compared to a lot of what we've seen this morning. No leaks, the roof integrity is okay, and nothing fell on the house.

Still no power of course, and it's hot! But Bob said it's supposed to get down in the 80's by Monday, and there's a nice breeze right now.

I don't know when I'll be able to update again, even via telephone. But just know that we made it through okay with minimal damage -- Yay!

Friday, September 12, 2008

Update: 10:00 pm

Our power just flickered, so I think I'm going to shut my computer down after I post this.

We're getting steady, strong winds and some pretty strong gusts. They're calling for hurricane force winds to impact Houston around midnight and keep going through the morning.

We've looked outside a few times. Lots of leaves down, and it's raining pretty steadily now. No trees down yet. TV said 200,000 people without power, and they expect 5.1 million to be without power by tomorrow. Our house has creaked a bit, but that's about it. Not sure where we'll sleep tonight. Maybe in the bedroom, or we may pull out the air mattress and sleep in the hallway.

We were watching a movie on the expanded cable, just for a break from the storm news, but the upper channels just went out. We can still get the normal cable channels.

Earlier, when we were watching the news, their signal flickered and they said they just went to generator backup. Daniel and I both had the same thought at the same time. We got up and grabbed the flashlights and put them on the coffee table so we could find them quickly.

Anyway, we're set for the night. Towels, blankets, flashlights, first-aid kit, water are all handy. The cats aren't too worried yet, and we're both pretty calm.

As I type, I can hear the tree outside the window bang on the edge of the house every 30 seconds or so. It's a fairly small tree though, only about 15 feet tall.

Alright. Wish us luck. I think this will be my last post for a while. I may get my parents to post something tomorrow for us, just to tell everyone how we fared.


Update: 7:45 pm

That was very funky. A few minutes ago, the sky was perfectly pink. It slowly faded to lavender, and now it's almost dark. Here's a couple of pics.
From Hurricane Ike

From Hurricane Ike

This last one, I swear there was blue sky showing between the clouds.
From Hurricane Ike

Power outages are spreading. No idea how much longer we'll be up. They're talking about power being out for weeks, but I think they always say that for big storms. And I'm in the suburbs, not the rural area. If it seems like it'll be too long, I suppose we can go visit my parents.

This is one of those days where I seem to be hungry all day long. This does not bode well for the next few hours.

Update: 6:20 pm

They're getting hurricane force winds in Galveston. We still haven't gotten much more than some gusts around 40 mph. Here's a pick of one of our trees in the backyard in a big gust.
From Hurricane Ike

We still have power (obviously), which is nice. We managed to have dinner, and it's cooling on the counter before we put the leftover in the frig. Want to keep the frig as cool as possible for as long as possible.

There have been some big fires in Galveston, and the fire department can't get to them to put them out. Galveston officials say that after 9:00 they won't be responding to any requests for help. That's rather scary. The news says that up to 40% of the islanders didn't evacuate. That's nuts.

The water hasn't risen in the last few hours, but that's because the tide was going out. Soon it'll change and then the water will rise pretty fast.

The house behind us already has some shingles flapping in the wind. We went out to look at our house, but so far, everything looks tight. Another neighbor dismantled part of his fence to use as hurricane shutters over his windows.

We're saving our non-power activities for when the power goes out. Right now, I'm keeping up with the news and internet.

Update: 3:00

Man, this day is passing so slowly! I feel like I'm just waiting and waiting and nothing is happening. I'm watching the news from Galveston, which is just 30 miles away, but there's almost nothing happening here. A few gusts, and every once in a while, it blows for a few minutes.

I ended up making some salmon chowder, and we put some chili in the crockpot so it would cook for tonight's dinner. The chowder's ingredients were dictated by what was in the freezer and frig that could be used. After that, we did one more thing outside. We took down the line holding up our grapevine, so that if a tree limb falls on it, it won't destroy the columns on our patio.

Here's a picture I found from earlier in the day. It's of the Strand in Galveston Island in the historic district.
From Hurricane Ike

They just showed a new picture of the strand, and the water is halfway up the first floor. Wow, it's going to take them a long time to recover.

I have friends who live in Galveston and Kemah, so I hope they evacuated.

We just went for another walk because we had too much nervous energy. The winds picked up a bit and we felt the first drops of rain, but it quickly went away. We chatted with another neighbor. He was stir-crazy too, especially because his house was boarded up, so he couldn't see outside. We heard someone cutting plywood a few streets over. That's cutting it close, to be putting up plywood now.

Streaming Video from Houston News

This is pretty cool. It's a link to a site that has multiple feeds. You can select the one you want to watch. I'm also following the Something Awful Hurricane Hoedown thread. Lots of H-town goons posting about what's happening.

Update: 12:30 pm

Oh wow. They're showing the road into Surfside. They've been showing it all morning, and an hour ago, the water from the Intercoastal waterway was starting to encroach on the road. It's the only road in and out of Surfside. The emergency people said when the road was down to one lane, they would pull out the emergency workers and shut down access to Surfside. Just now, they showed it again, and the road is almost entirely underwater.

They've issued a curfew in Galveston from 8pm to 5am, and if they catch you out, it's a $2,000 fine. The police have closed Seawall Blvd off to the public, but it doesn't matter. People are still out taking pictures and walking along. One of the piers has collapsed already, and the waves are crashing really high over the seawall.

Here's another interesting link. It's to the Houston Transtar camera system.

You can look at dozens of cameras for the freeways and streets.

My neighbors are outside taking down the tin roof over their patio. The winds still haven't gotten rough yet. I'm surprised that it hasn't gotten worse based on what I'm seeing in Galveston. It's only 30 miles east of us.

Heard from one of my coworkers this morning. He's in a mandatory evacuation zone, so he's going to stay with a friend further inland. His wife got on a plane this morning, one of the last flights out, I think. He said another coworker was headed to Oklahoma. I don't know what happened to my other 2 coworkers.

Apparently, there's another mass exodus this afternoon. It was calm this morning, but now that it's looking worse out, I think a lot of people have changed their minds and are leaving.

I'm recharging my camera battery, then I'll post a couple of pre-hurricane pics.

11:00 update

The local news is getting crazy. Western part of Galveston is underwater. The Strand, which is on the east side, protected by the seawall and by the cruise terminal, is underwater. I saw some trucks driving through the streets and the water was up over the tires. In another shot, I saw a car driving on a road that was totally underwater, and the water was almost over the hood. What are these people thinking!?

Here are some local feeds if you want to see the the local news and video.

I saw footage from Kemah, one of my favorite places to go eat. It's right on the water. Normally the water is 4-6 feet below the boardwalk, and we'd feed the catfish. Today, the water is almost as high as the boardwalk, and the waves are pushing through the boardwalk and already popping some of the boards loose.

The news talked about Bolivar peninsula and said the Coast Guard was already starting to rescue people off their rooftops. Apparently they weren't expecting the water to get so high there.

Galveston has suspended water service, including drinking water and sewage, to protect the system from saltwater.

The sky is getting less blue and a lot more gray. The winds have died down for the moment. I just took a nice shower and I'll have lunch soon, so I can have something hot.

Hurricane Ike Update - Friday 10:00 am

I think we're all battened down now. I made pancakes this morning and ran the dishwasher. From now on, we're eating on paper plates. I fully expect the power to go out in another 2-4 hours. Last time we went through Isabel is Virginia, they shut the power grid down 3 hours in advance of the storm to save the power grid.

Watching the local news this morning. At this point, it's much more informative than the Weather Channel. The western end of Galveston is already underwater, and the waves are overtopping the 17 foot seawall at the eastern end.

We went for a walk this morning, just to get out one last time. It's getting very gusty out, and it actually feels pretty good. The breeze was fairly cool. About 30-40% of the houses in our neighborhood are boarded up. Ours isn't one of them.

Only task left is taking pictures, and put the most necessary supplies in the bathroom in case we have to retreat there tonight. The cats are going into their carriers later tonight, and I'm sure they won't be happy.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Hurricane Ike Update - Thursday Afternoon

We talked it over all night and again this morning. We finally decided not to evacuate, although I have yet to cancel my hotel room in Dallas. The models have shifted and have Ike coming in as a weak to moderate Cat 3 coming in a little west of Galveston Bay, putting us on the dirty side. I think they're forecasting us to get winds of 60-90 mph. They're predicting 15-20 foot surge into Galveston. We're at 23-25 feet above mean sea level. We are not in a mandatory evacuation zone.

We went out this morning to Wal-Mart, early, and I'm glad we went early. We didn't need much. Got a couple lights, another tarp, some instant coffee and one more flat of water. Had to go out again to run a couple of errands, like dropping off library books, and topped off my gas tank. The interstate headed north was already backed up and moving very slowly.

When we got back, we started putting stuff in the garage. Put Daniel's car in the garage, but we're going to wait until tomorrow morning to try and squeeze my car in there. I think we have everything inside now. The last big task is to take pictures of all our belongings in case something catastrophic happens.

We're eating stuff out of the refrigerator and freezer to empty those out and saving the canned food for later, because I expect the power to go out. Put the collars on the cats, and they're very annoyed at that.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Hurricane Ike

Should be renamed Hurricane EEEK! I keep changing my mind every 30 minutes about whether we should evacuate or not. The nightmare of evacuating from Rita is still scarred into my mind. I really do not want to go through anything like that again. Hours and hours of sitting in traffic in the middle of the night with 2 cats yowling in the back seat and desperately praying for a gas station that had gas. I just don't know if I can handle it.

The official forecast track is to come in at Matagorda Bay as a Cat 4. That's about 90 miles SW of us. If so, we'll experience Cat 1 winds Friday night. I'm not worried about flooding or storm surge. On the other hand, a couple of the better models have it coming in at Galveston Bay as a Cat 4. If that's the case, it's idiotic to stay.

I just made hotel reservations in Dallas, about 5 hours north of here. Of course, the tracks show it going over Dallas as well and soaking it. I've also got the phone numbers of a cousin who said we could stay with them.

Even if we don't get bad winds, we could lose power. Staying here with no A/C or fans and lots of mosquitoes doesn't sound like any fun either.


Well, I think we'll make some preparations tonight, then assess again tomorrow.

My big news

Want to hear? I'm pregnant! :) Hard to believe. I'm actually just into my 13th week, so I'm entering my second trimester.

I was sick all day with so-called morning sickness for about 6 weeks. I still have to watch what I eat. I think sugar and refined wheat products really make me sick. They make me so bloated I can't eat anything else. Now I crave veggies, fruit, milk and beans. Wierd. At least it's mostly health food, and not junk food.

Everything looks healthy, but we can't tell the sex yet. We'll keep you posted.

Wednesday, February 06, 2008

Life is rough

So much has been going on lately. I started posting something about Christmas, but wasn't even able to sit still 10 minutes to finish it. Pathetic, I know.

Christmas was fun when we went to visit my parents. Weather was fairly nice, and it was fun scraping ice in the morning, then flying home and wearing shorts and using the AC in the afternoon. Had fun playing with my nephews, and it was fun to call Devon "Biscuit" all day. His 6-year old mind couldn't take too much teasing though, so we had to stop calling him Biscuit after a couple of hours.

Devon's birthday is this week, and I found him a Transformers outfit to wear and the last Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle minimutant toy for his birthday.

Work has just been insane since I got back in early January. I haven't had any free time. And to compound the problem, I've had some serious eye problems come up in teh last 3 weeks. My eyes feel like they are constantly scratchy and sore and tired and light sensitive. Feels like I have sand in them all day long. The doctor hasn't been able to help. I'm on so many different types of eye drops and it's not helping. He finally told me I needed to see a specialist's specialist, so I have an appointment with an eye surgeon next week. It seems an eternity away, even though everyone tells me I'm lucky to get in so soon. Bleah.

So for the last week or more, my evenings are limited to sitting on the couch and half-watching tv while putting a compress on my eyes. I can't drive at night because my night-vision is shot. Needless to say, this has not been very much fun, espeically when combined with the stress of work.

Daniel has been wonderful at keeping me stable and positive through all this. I can't say enough how happy I am to have him.

If you read this, take a moment to say hi. I could use some cheering up. :)