Understanding Laura

I am a crunchy oddball with too many ideas and too little time. Do you get me now?

Wednesday, May 31, 2006


In today's society of open communication and unlimited information, one is hard pressed to find a woman who goes through pregnancy without first knowing the majority of the symptoms her body will rain upon her.

I think it's safe to say it's just as hard to find a woman who doesn't know the timeline of said symptoms.

According to the ultrasound that was done approximately two and a half weeks ago, this Little Chicken is a mere ten and one half weeks into development.

This means I am still in my first trimester. But all of the symptoms I have experienced seem to be about two weeks ahead of the standard calendar of pregnancy. The reason I'm musing about this is because the doctor and the ultrasound technician swore up and down that this baby was conceived on a date I find highly unlikely. I calculated the conception date to be two weeks before they did. :)

So, who's to say?
Maybe they're right.
Maybe modern science has prevailed over my knowing my own body.

Or maybe, just maybe, the reason I haven't been having morning sickness nearly as often, feeling quite as tired as I once was, or having the oh-so-frequent mood swings my husband has come to fear is because I am no longer in my first trimester.

I guess there's no real way to tell.

I'm just glad that I'm not puking at the drop of a hat anymore.

Tuesday, May 30, 2006

My Mom

"I raised you to be a level-headed, productive member of society.
If I can't let you go out and do that, then why did I raise you?"

Okay, maybe I shouldn't have put it in quotation marks. But those two sentences are the essence of what my Mom has told me every time I've asked her why she trusts me to run my own life.

My Mom is an inspiration to me. I hope I can be the kind of mom to our Little Chicken that she has been to me. I just can't bear the thought of this baby growing up without the kind of relationship I had with my Mom.

I am who I am because of the awesome relationship
I have with my Mom.

And I like me!

Thanks Mom. I really mean it.

Saturday, May 27, 2006

Let's Go Fly A Kite!

I took a day off of being crazy...Actually, I just traded crazy for grumpy and sat in the shade while Brian flew a kite.
He had so much fun!
It was like he was a kid again.

Yes, Yes. Being pregnant has most definitely increased my desire to know exactly where everything is. When I was a kid, I used to stay up late. Into the wee hours of the night I'd organize my things, rearrange my furniture, make lists of what I wanted to do... That bug grew bigger with Little Chicken. Only problem is, I'm trying to avoid heavy lifting, so I don't get to do it as drastically as I was once able.

Zoe's new form of acting out is throwing ALL of her weight into the leash and dragging me behind her. She never was the best behaved puppy on a leash, but this? This is new. So, we tied her to a balance beam on the playground. She didn't stay there long. I took pity on her teeny tiny body in it's black fur coat.
It was HOT yesterday.
See her GI-NORMOUS tongue?

Thursday, May 25, 2006


Not working and feeling...blah! makes you do crazy things. I was starting to feel touches of cabin-fever. I got out of the house. I organized the office (not an easy task!). Then I revamped my blog.


The key to my sanity is change. So I'm making subtle changes in my life and all throughout the house. I've decided to post a picture of the things I change. So that months from now, I can look back and remember how crazy I was as a pregnant person.

Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Little Bits

It doesn't make sense, I know.

Small condiments.

But I love them. They make me smile, every time. The Heinz collection, Brian got for me the night before he left for basic training. We were eating at the Olio, a terrible restaurant in the Sheraton Hotel in SLC. They serve "American" meals (Like fries, pizza, and burgers) to the soldiers, airmen, seamen, and marines that are headed off to training. Along with these meals, they provide small condiments, rather than stocking them in bulk.

The three most likely reasons I came up with would be
1) the government pays for it
2) their regular menu consists of several dishes that NO ONE would put ketchup on
3) for my enjoyment.

The mini tabasco I got from Chase, when he found out that I LOVE mini condiments. He got it from an MRE (I think Meal Ready to Eat??). He had a few of them, and when I started exclaiming over how cute they were, he said I could take one.

I'm always on the lookout for tiny condiments... I'm not sure why.

Thanks for all the positive support about my previous post. Sometimes I hate that I'm not perfect. :)

Monday, May 22, 2006


I've been feeling...mortal today. I've been in denial about how much time I have to say
"I love you."
"I miss you."
"I need you."
"I'm sorry."

I think today, for no particular reason, made me realize that I've been living in the now. The now is fantastic, but I have to wonder how long now is going to last.

Will I get one last chance to tell those that deserve it
"Thank you. I mean it."?

There's no guarantee.

And blogging about it doesn't really solve the problem.

I think I may have just figured out what triggered this crushing feeling of finality. I was watching a television program, Medium. One of my all-time favorites. The season finale, actually. And my husband runs downstairs, full of excitement. He starts talking to me even before he can see me. He shouts,

"Wanna hear the worst joke in the world? A baby seal..."
Me, "Hey! I'd love to! But not right now! My show! Shhh!"

A deflated Brian makes his way back up the stairs and I go back to my show. Three minutes later, my show has ended, and I wander upstairs. I am feeling such deep remorse. I try to cleanse myself of the yucky feelings by sitting in the office and saying,

"Ok, I'm ready to hear the worst joke in the world."

Brian no longer wants to share it with me.

When did television become so important to me, that it has the authority to override anything Brian might want to say to me? Now, granted, he DID want to tell me the WORST joke in the world. It wasn't anything important or life-altering. But I chose this television program over him.

How did I come to this point?
Why do I allow TV to govern my life?
Is there a tv-addicts anonymous I can join?

Friday, May 19, 2006

Lake Eklutna

First off, I'm so glad I've helped to inspire Jess to pick up music again. My mom played the clarinet while she was pregnant with me, it's kind of a tradition I wanted to carry on.

Today we went to Lake Eklutna. There's a lot of stuff around here with names like that.
The best I can figure, the name is pronounced Eck-Loot-nuh.

Brian's shop opted to go on a hike instead of an hour and a half of PT at the gym. So, they got out of work early and spouses were encouraged to come along.

Zoe wasn't invited, but I think she was well received.

You might ask why I'm not by a lake in this picture. Well, there's a simple reason for that...with a long story attached to it.

Lake Eklutna is about forty minutes from our house. The last nine miles of the trip are very curvy, very narrow mountain roads. Zoe was doing great (She loves car rides!) until about mile five.

With four miles left to go, she started gagging. I'm guessing the curves were getting to be too much for her tiny dog tummy. I tried to grab her water dish to catch the bulk of it, but I couldn't get to it in time. As I was in the passenger seat, I had full Zoe responsibility.

She puked...All over me.

I tried to catch some in my hand when it was apparent I wasn't going to be able to get to the bowl in time. That was stupid. I ended up throwing about two tablespoons of dog puke out the window, consequently all down the side of our car.

I sat for the next four rolling mountain road miles with drying dog puke on my hand, my shirt, my jeans, my arm, my face...with nothing to clean up with...with a puke-covered dog trying to seek comfort by snuggling my neck...with morning sickness.

Needless to say, when we pulled into the parking lot for the hiking trail, a camera was the LAST thing on my mind. This picture was taken several hours after the incident.

Since I remain Laura-The Prepared, I had wet wipes in the first aid kit in our trunk. I wasn't able to get the puke off my jeans, but I DID get it off my hands and my mood improved vastly once we started walking.

Whew! I'm prepping for motherhood with a dog. I kept repeating,

"At least when dogs puke, it only smells like dog food.
Imagine what a kid's puke smells like."

Brian laughed at me the whole time I was covered in puke. I might have to see how he does with this new arrival. Maybe I'll fill him up, bounce him around a bit, and then pass him off to Daddy.

Who's laughing now?

(I'm kidding. I'd never do that.)

Wednesday, May 17, 2006

Bourke has entered the building.

I have a clarinet!

I have a clarinet!

His name is Bourke. He came from a home that didn't care much for him. After a bit of T.L.C. and reassurance that those living arrangements would never be repeated, he and I have bonded.

I missed playing the clarinet!

I missed music in my life.

I played for 6 years when I was a kid. Would you believe that my husband had never heard me play until Bourke arrived?

Brian's so cute, he'll hear me practicing, come downstairs, kiss me and say things like

"I never knew you were so talented."

"I hope our baby loves music like you do."

"Wow, you're sounding really good!"

I love that he loves that about me.

Monday, May 15, 2006

But it's a CUTE little chicken!

Brian: It looks like a chicken.
Doctor: -Nervous laughter.-
Laura: But it's a cute little chicken!

This is our baby's first picture. His/her head is on the bottom. The wing looking things are his/her nubs, which will soon be arms and legs.

Baby Gent has a heart beat of 160.
Super healthy and looking good.

Much to my dismay, we are not due to deliver until the 25th of December. We had estimated a due date of about late November to early December.

Luckily, only 5% of pregnant women deliver ON their due dates. I'm hoping for earlier, but this baby will come when he's good and ready.

Monday, May 08, 2006


Pregnancy hormones wreak havoc on your body. That's for darn sure. My body went so far as to grow a THICK mustache.

Brian, sweet husband that he is, decided it would be in his best interests to snap a photo of my head in the shampoo bowl with blue wax on my upper lip.

Now, that the sore feeling of embarrassment has worn off, I'm ready to post this rather humorous picture.

Oh yeah, did I mention that as a pregnant woman I am overly sensitive to every emotion in the book? I've forgotten how to take a joke!

Saturday, May 06, 2006

Heather Marie

Heather and I went to junior high school together. I can't quite recall having any classes with her. She took choir, I took band. We probably had a few of the basics together, but we really didn't get to know each other until the summer before high school.

We both got jobs at a theme park just a bit outside of our hometown. Since we rode the bus together nearly everyday, we got to hang out a lot. She, Holly, Emma, and I were nearly inseparable that summer.

We were fifteen, the world was at our feet and we just couldn't have enough fun.

Heather and I had a lot in common back then. We both loved music, we were both fairly tiny (five feet two inches, she kept the tiny part. I grew an inch and later gained 30 pounds.), close birthdays, love for shopping, and we LOVED boys.

When Heather met my brother Paul, I gotta tell you, our relationship was too young to handle it. We grew apart as she and Paul grew closer together. As luck would have it, this worked out best for all involved.

Heather and Paul are happily married and expecting their third baby. And Heather and I have something in common again! I think we both missed that connection. When she got married much earlier than I did, she jump started her life and I'm just barely catching up. It's been fun knowing we're both expecting. And cousins!

If someone had told my fifteen year old self I'd be a Auntie Laurla to Heather's babies, I wouldn't have believed them. But I wouldn't trade it for the world.

And now that we can share these pregnancies, I'm starting to feel like we're fifteen again. Heather got me this frame as a birthday present. It's made for an ultrasound picture. I can't wait to put a picture in it!

Thank you Heather!

Random Act of Confusion

I was so confused and sad when I hadn't seen any comments for so long. I was starting to think no one read my blog. Then I had the bright idea that I may have accidentally blocked comments until I approved them, by mixing stuff up in settings. So I went into settings, and I SO had comments!

Thanks for commenting everyone!

Makes me feel like I'm not all alone in my little world of blogging.

Friday, May 05, 2006

Happy Birthday to ME!

I'm the big 2-2!

Twenty two years of life. And this was the BEST birthday EVER! When I came home from work, I walked into the kitchen to see the infamous birthday banner up, birthday gifts on the table, and a happy husband waiting to give me a big hug.

For those who know me, you also know about Brian's amazing ability to forget big events... Particularly my birthday. And this year, he nailed it on the head. He got the right day, the right time, heck, just the right idea. Thanks Honey! I'd also like to thank everyone else for the calls and the cards. Sorry to say, we were very short on minutes, so I didn't get to talk to everyone I would have liked.
But I appreciate the voicemails!

Here's the rundown of 4 May 2006.

I'm not usually one to collect anything, but my new fav thing to collect is DVD's. Brian remembered this and got me Just Married and Mr. & Mrs. Smith. Believe it or not, I dreamed that he would get me Mr. & Mrs. Smith. Which is only odd because I never even hinted that I like that movie. We saw it ONCE when it first came out. But my dream came true and I swear I didn't peek!

Also on the kitchen table was a beautiful flower bouquet from Jim and Carol, my folks in law. Though, once I found out that the flowers were stuck in a cake, I quickly devoured the cake. I didn't even think about a pre-demolition picture. Give me a break! I'm a ravenous pregnant woman!
I'm lucky I didn't eat the table with it!

This picture requires some explanation. I'm afraid the one I have to give doesn't do it justice. This is a birthday present from Steve Van Wie. It's a card, which I wouldn't normally take a picture of. It's what inside the card that intrigued me. For my birthday, Steve Van Wie gave me 1 dollar, 3 nickels, 2 pennies, 1 used piece of floss, 1 unused piece of gum, and 1 playing card (with strict instruction that I needed to return it once I'd looked at it thoroughly.)
Hey, is there anything Mastercard can't buy these days? :)

It really made me laugh. And he also got me a snowcone from the Ice Cream Man!

Yes! Alaska has an ice cream truck! We're still in America!

This is Chaser. He's proudly holding a baby bath. We couldn't figure out how to put it together, but we've still got 7 months. We'll figure it out. He really goes all out for his friends! He does too much!

I later found out the playing card in Steve Van Wie's card was Chaser's.

Do you see? Too much! We love Chaser!
This is Brian. It's the only picture we took of him and since he orchestrated the whole night, I'm posting it. I know, it's not very birthday-ie.
We're in Denny's, which seems a little eccentric, but I REALLY wanted my favorite dish.
(See below.)

I didn't know Brian was snapping pictures of me! I think I'm talking to one of my parents. It was past 7:00 by then, so we had free minutes.
(By the way, that's 9:00 their time! They stayed up late to talk to me!)

And this would be the returning star of the night, my favorite dish. I love deep fried anything right now. I always have, but the desire has definitely increased with pregnancy. Unfortunately, it didn't agree with me.
I tossed it later that night.

Life just wouldn't be the same without Steve Van Wie. He's licking his bacon. He helps ease the homesick feeling I have for my five brothers.

And hugs goodbye. This was just an awesome birthday all around.
Even with the puking!

Wednesday, May 03, 2006

To be a kid again

Brian and I took Zoe for a walk in the park a couple of days ago. When I saw this picture, I just sat and smiled. I look truly happy in this picture.

I'd like to think that look on my face sums up how I feel about my life right now. My life is exactly as I want.

I never thought life could be THIS good

Tuesday, May 02, 2006

Beyond Nerve-wracking

I had to go to the emergency room yesterday.

I only waited in the waiting room for about three minutes. I guess the emergency room attendants decided it was pretty important. Seeing how I'm in my first trimester, heavy bleeding generally means only one thing.


Brian was at work, and he had the car, so my boss drove me. She checked me in and then had to get back to the center.

I was all alone.

I called Brian's First Shirt and he was able to track him down, but Brian wasn't able to make it to the hospital until I'd been there for about an hour. Well, that's not true. He was THERE, they just wouldn't let him in. I had to ask them to let him in.

I was a nervous wreck. Crying silently through all the questions they asked me; "Have you had any cramping? Fever? Injury or accident? When was your last menstrual period? Your last normal ultrasound?" The questions seemed endless, and I was so scared for our baby. But, as soon as Brian was there and he held me in a big, strong hug, I stopped crying.

No matter what happened, he was there.

So, I gave blood, urine, and nervous laughter at their reassurances. I was a little worried when they couldn't hear the baby's heart beat with the doppler thing-a-ma-jig. They assured us that it was normal, especially if we were only as far along as I had calculated.

We waited in the waiting room until my blood tests came back. They detected enough of the pregnancy hormone to consider an ultrasound. So, we got to see our baby for the first time.

Brian says it's a moment he'll never forget.

He (or she!) was so tiny. The tech said he's about two centimeters long. (About the size of a grain of rice.) They said everything looked normal and according to their measurements, he is six weeks and three days along.
(That puts our due date on December 24th.)

When they told me I have type A- blood, and that it's possible my body could be attacking the baby, thinking it was a virus or some other "problem," I was SO mad at my body. I railed at myself in my head,

"How could you attack that poor tiny thing! You leave it alone! Pick on someone your OWN size!"

They gave me a shot of Rogam, which stops a negative blood type from producing the antibodies necessary to "off" a positive blood type pregnancy. If that was why I was bleeding, everything should be okay now.

I had what is referred to as a "threatened miscarriage." That just means that my body nearly aborted the baby. So, for right now, I'm on bed rest until they can confirm that everything will be okay. I have an appointment tomorrow.

Wish me luck!