Monday, July 30, 2007

Spoke too soon?

I never imagined that I might actually ovulate and see the Crimson Biatch before I stopped breastfeeding. It's funny how quickly my expectations can be reset. With the CM and temp rise all of a sudden it was a possibility... and now I'm finding myself obsessing. I've taken my temp almost every day since! I even entered my 'data' into FF, with my pre-O temps from a previous cycle. FF did give me an O date, but I'm still not convinced. My temp this morning was only 97.3 and that was after going downstairs to move a sprinkler and back upstairs again. Argh! I keep telling myself it's really not that long to wait until next weekend when CB would theoretically show up - but I just want to KNOW.

I'm so not good at waiting!

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Looking good!

I am sitting here trying desperately to hold my excitement in check. I decided on a lark to take my temp this morning, and it was 97.8, about .8 higher than my usual pre-O temps (although I haven't been taking them this 'cycle'). And, no CM to speak of.

I think I might actually have ovulated!?!?!?!

Holy shit, batman.

I'll take my temp again tomorrow and see what that's like - and then I guess I'm in a 2ww! (Zero chance of being pregnant unless it was an immaculate conception, but 2 weeks until I find out if CB show up!)

Can it really be true?

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Has the battle been won?

I am now down to nursing Ant only two times per day, first thing in the morning and right before bed.

I am enjoying the 'freedom' of being able to wear real bras again. I had been using just a light sports-bra type of nursing bra, I hated the ones with all the levers and switches to undo the cup for BFing. And I've never been terribly well endowed (I think I was probably a C- at my absolute biggest, sniff), so minimal support was just fine. But that did mean that I was constantly on 'high-beam', just a tad embarassing!

And freedom from pumping at work is heavenly - not only in the extra time that is freed up, which isn't all that significant, but also in my reduced frustration levels. All in all, a good thing.

The best part, by far, is that I'm actually starting to have a bit of CM when I wipe. In fact, more than just a bit. I might even say prodigious amounts! AND, my libido is finally waking up after having been missing basically since Ant was conceived. (I was hoping to be one of those lucky women who gets to be super-horny during pregnancy - um, NOT!) So I'm thinking, hoping, wishing that perhaps I'll actually ovulate all on my own, and see that magical Crimson Bitch in a few weeks?!?!?! I'm so excited!

Saturday, July 14, 2007

Recipe swap

A few people expressed interest in a recipe swap, and as I am desperate for something different to eat that A) is either good as leftovers, or B) is quick to prepare, I thought I'd go ahead with it. I think we can be pretty simple about this - post a recipe on your site and then let me know either via email or a comment, and I'll post a link to it here. And I'll keep this post at the top for a while, so the recipes will be easy to find.

Here are the recipes, I'll keep adding as I get links from folks:
Nico - asparagus pasta
Em - marinated black bean salad
Shelley - Joanne's crockpot stuffed green peppers and Shelley's crockpot swiss steak
Jenn - whole wheat mac-n-cheese and beef stew
Katie - Cheesy beer soup

Thursday, July 12, 2007

Weaning, part 2

We cut out afternoon nursing a couple of weeks ago as it was just too iffy with me getting home from work about half an hour after Ant would get hungry, and then if he was fed, impossible for me to pump while taking care of him. So that was switched to formula.

Recently, I've still been nursing him mid morning, and pumping at work, but my production has dropped from ~5 ounces to just about 2. Not enough to feed him, he usually takes around 4oz. So I had very seriously been considering dropping that feed too. Then yesterday I tried to nurse him after his morning nap, he took one suck and then wanted to play. So I took that as a signal to switch to formula, and in fact he was perfectly happy taking it out of a sippy cup. So hopefully we can make the bottle to cup transition nice and smooth too.

The biggest bonus - no more pumping at work!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Wednesday, July 04, 2007

Relationship stuff

One of the things that has surprised me about having a baby is how it's affected my relationship with M. We have always been rock solid, from the day the light dawned on his marble head. (I was chasing him for about a year before he finally clued in). We communicate really well, and have never had a fight.

We went through pre-Cana before we got married, one of our assignments was to ask our parents for three things that they had learned through their years of marriage that could help us start ours off on the right foot.

My mom is one of the wisest people I know. We have put her suggestions into practice, and I think that they have been instrumental in keeping our relations as cordial and happy as they are. In fact, I try and practice them in the rest of my life as well.

First, never assume that anything your spouse does is based on ill intention. If something is said or done that hurts you, before getting all up in arms and angry about it, think about other ways in which the words/act could have been intended that were not acrimonious.

Second, praise and notice can make a world of difference. Paying attention to the little things, like the bathroom being cleaned, the lawn being mowed, the accounts taken care of, and saying a simple thank you to show appreciation makes the effort put in seem much more worthwhile.

Third - If you do something wrong, admit it and apologize. Things are a lot more likely to escalate if you get defensive, or try and cover up whatever you've done.

Anyway, both M and I have tried as much as we can to practice these 'rules'. But I had been feeling for the past month or two that we were getting off track. I felt like I was doing way more than my fair share around here, and that M was forgetting rule number two. I don't mind so much doing most of the cleaning and cooking if I think my effort is being noticed, but when I feel like all the work I'm doing is making zero impression it gets harder and harder to be okay with.

I had a bit of a meltdown this past weekend - during Ant's nap, M was upstairs adding a new account in Quicken and copying and pasting transactions into it. I, meanwhile, was feeding Ant, putting him down, cleaning the dishes from last night and his breakfast, putting the laundry in the washing machine... when M finally came down I was not a happy camper, and he immediately picked up on it. I told him that I was a little bit mad that I'd been doing all this stuff while he was basically just faffing. He said I could have asked him for help - my retort was "I shouldn't HAVE to ask!"

He said that was a very good point. And that I wasn't to do any cleaning for at least two weeks. He actually has followed through so far. I feel guilty when I'm sitting around doing nothing while he's cleaning, so I have been doing things, but it's meant that I actually got to clean the kitchen floor which has been needing it despearatly, instead of doing yet another set of dishes.

Asparagus pasta

prep time ~25 minutes

Bring to boil:
2 qts water (you need to measure it because of the salt ratio).
1 Tbsp salt (don't reduce this - you're throwing most of it away later)

Cut up 1 lb asparagus: first cut off about 1.5 inches from the tip and then the top 1.5 inches from what's left, and put these pieces in a mesh bag (I use the ones that onions come in).

Cut up the remainder into 1.5" pieces.

Put these stalks and the mesh bag of tips into the water and cook for 3 minutes.

Remove the mesh bag and run cold water over it to stop it cooking. Put it aside.

Continue simmering the stalks for another 5 minutes.

Remove asparagus from the water and take out 1/2 cup of the water and transfer both to a blender. Don't empty out the rest!

Add 6oz fusilli or other small pasta to the asparagus water (use however much you need for 2 servings - you may like more than this).

Cook about 7 minutes (3 minutes less than whatever the package says)

In the meantime, add to the asparagus and water in the blender:
grated rind of 1 lemon
1 Tbsp lemon juice
1/4 cup olive oil.
Puree in the blender till smooth.

Save 1 cup of the pasta water and drain the pasta.

Return it immediately to the pan with the puree and 1/2 cup of the saved pasta water.

Cook for 3 minutes over moderate heat (it should be boiling), stirring constantly. Add a bit more water if necessary. You want it to be a thick sauce, not a soup, but
remember the cheese will thicken it.

Add 1/2 cup grated Parmesan, and pepper to taste, cook briefly, then add the reserved asparagus tips and cook, stirrng gently, just long enough for the tips to get hot.

Serve immediately in pre-warmed bowls. (Or, reheat in microwave!)

The recipe also doubles really nicely, and makes for good leftovers too! If you double it, no need to use extra lemon rind, and still only add 1/2c water into the blender. Otherwise it gets too soupy. Double everything else.