Friday, November 30, 2007

Asterisks

*No bullet points from me. Bullets are violent, and make me think of Crash, which I just saw the beginning of again because a colleague is using it in his Race and Ethnicity in American Cinema seminar (my school is almost as cool as that makes it sound).

(Also, I don't know the code. But really, I like asterisks better.)

*I spoke to my dad yesterday, and he said he is going to be in Germany from December 8-18. I have been feeling pretty soft on my dad recently since he gave me this for my birthday. But, um, what?? (He does travel a lot for business, but this is pleasure.) He has not been terrifically involved with my nephew, but I worry that this is because Flipper is a 2nd grandchild....and/or because he is not biologically related to my dad.

He sees Nephew S. fairly frequently, but only because one of my stepmother's sons happens to live nearby my sister; when they're in that neck of the woods to see her grandchildren, they stop by to see S. There is no reason for my stepmother to want to come to our neck of the woods. (She's not mean...she's just emotionally blunted. If I were ever to point out to her that she makes sure her own family is taken care of and neglects my dad's, she would point out -- accurately -- that his family is his job. She doesn't have the emotional insight to see that he is the type of man who lets women take care of family [my mom is still closer to many of his family members than he is] and that since she had an affair with him while he was married to my mom and my sister and I were old enough to know about it, it is in everyone's interests for her to play a role in keeping the family together.)

*More entertainingly: yesterday, the kids (my students) were asking about Flipper, and one of them asked if he will be white. I replied that my partner was white. This, of course, begged an obvious question; Little Miss Sophisticate, the fashion plate of my homeroom, asked, "Do you know the sperm donor?" Wow. I said, "Uh, no, it was a mail order thing." She nodded knowingly. Holy crap, I don't think I could have said the word "sperm" in front of an adult when I was 12.

Today, in the other homeroom, one of the kids asked, "Does the baby have a father?" I was more prepared this time, and I answered that, of course, you know it takes a man and a woman to make a baby, but we don't know the man, and the baby won't know the man (well, when he's 18 he can, but I digress, and I didn't with the kids). The student looked a little confused, and I said something about how you can just order it. I guess this made sense to him. Ironically, it is perhaps a bit easier to discuss than, you know, that other way babies are made.

*And on that note: at my shower the other day, a colleague with two adopted children said that two years ago, her then-sixth grader came home and said, "Mom, you and Dad are lucky you didn't have to do you-know to get us." Um. Yeah.

*Finally: I started the Stone Age today. (Quick, say Australopithecus afarensis five times fast!) I have turned everything over to my replacement. Any day now, boy...

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Showered

(Yes, I stole this post title from another blog. but I can't remember which one. I think it was Possible Maybe.)

Here's Co's belly at 39 weeks. To me, she looks pretty big, but most folks don't believe she's due in a week:

39 Weeks Belly Shot

Charlotte wants updates. The warm fuzzy update is that my job had a shower for me today. It was really fun and I was extremely touched. There was a cake with blue writing and plastic footballs, and they invited Co to come (to my surprise! it was all a surprise!) and everyone admired her belly. They made a betting pool for when she'd give birth.

No significant changes here, however. Yesterday's midwife visit went well but there are no indicators of when Flipper will be joining us.

I am feeling increasingly ready. (Yes, I'm impatient, but that's not necessarily the same as ready...) Our bags are partially packed, and I picked up supplies like arnica, lip balm, Luna bars, Gatorade. We have everything we need for labor, and for Flipper. We set up the P n' P where he'll sleep. Yesterday we went to a local crunchy baby store and The Sling Lady helped us try some on; we were please to find that we felt comfortable with the Maya wrap, and it fits us both. Tomorrow I start the next unit with my kids, the one I want to be able to start off before I go.

So whenever you're ready, little guy...

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Dream Interpretation

A couple nights ago, I dreamed that I was swimming in canals with Maggie, the dachshund. It was sort of like we were in Venice. I got ahead of Maggie at one point and realized I was being chased by a shark. (Now, I love sharks and don't fear them really, but whatever...) I managed to get out and was yelling for Maggie to hurry up and waiting for her to come by so I could snatch her, but she couldn't out-doggie-paddle the shark and it ate her. So, I had to use rod and reel to catch the shark and open its belly, and rescue Maggie, who was fine if annoyed, kind of a la the woodsman in Little Red Riding Hood.

Okay, I think there are many ways in which this dream can be interpreted as a generalized impending birth anxiety dream.

So, there you have it. A not very enlightening post from Co.

And no, Lo, I'm *not* in labor yet.

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Friday, November 23, 2007

Did Kafka Ever Change His Name?

We spent the day standing on neverending lines at Social Security and the DMV, in order to finally change our names. Exhausting, but now complete.

Any advice on where to change them next (and in what order) is welcome.

We did have lunch at Junior's. Yum.

Thanksgiving, with Due Date Buddy's family, was fun and full of big bellies.

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Sending Love

People who deserve so much better are having a hard time. Go give them some love.

Monday, November 19, 2007

Teenagers, Gender, and Impatience

When I come home right after work (I'm a teacher), I share the subway with hordes of middle and high school students making their commute. Overheard today: "Every time you see a rainbow, God is having gay sex."

Huh.

At my latest Hebrew tutoring gig this evening, a group of sixth graders, one of my students was fondling her cell phone. After a few minutes I realized she was continually texting while she was working. I asked her who she was texting. I was pretty much assuming it was, you know, her BFF Jill (the first time she texted I thought maybe it was her mom...but not when it became constant). She smiled sweetly at me and replied, "My boyfriend."

Oh.

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My great-aunt told me she is working on an afghan for Flipper. I was very touched by this, especially since neither Co nor I have any living grandparents, so she is one of a very few links to that generation. She made us a gorgeous afghan for our wedding. A few days ago she emailed me to check on the due date. I replied that he was due Dec. 6, and she wrote back, "Oh, no! I thought it was a girl! I'll have to start over!" (Apparently she had begun a pink afghan.) I assured her that we absolutely do not mind a pink afghan.

My mom called tonight because my great-aunt is still, apparently, extremely worried about giving Flipper a pink afghan. Together they came up with a workable plan that alternates blue and pink; through mom, I sent the okay for this.

I can't imagine why she thought Flipper was a girl; I've sent her at least two emails specifying that he was a boy. Great-Aunt made a blue, pink, and white afghan for Nephew S. because she wasn't sure of his sex (though my sister did tell). So why did she assume the *wrong* sex for Flipper?

Co thinks maybe she figured that since we're lesbians, it had to be a girl. Where would the Y chromosome come from?

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I vacillate between wanting a little more time before Flipper's birth, and being impatient to meet him. I do want to get my students a little farther; I want to be the one to start the Stone Age unit; really, there is *no one* else who gets excited about early hominids the way I do. The good news is that my replacement is lined up (she currently works as a paraprofessional in my classroom) and it's been approved that I can use my buttload of accumulated sick days to take off about two months to stay home with Co and Flipper.

The arrivals from our childbirth class add to my impatience, though their due dates were all significantly before ours. The three couples left are all December dates.

Of course, I have no control over the situation, and in reality we probably have *at least* two weeks to go. Probably more like three or four. So my sense that he could come any day is misplaced.

I just can't wait to see what this little guy looks like and hold him in my arms.

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Moments: Funny & Touching

I have a student with Asperger's Syndrome in my class. He is high-functioning and good-natured (as opposed to the student with the syndrome I taught last year, who was cranky and obstinate; different facets of the spectrum). His major trigger is when things get chaotic, which they did at lunchtime yesterday. He fled the room in tears, and I went after him. I checked a few of his typical retreats, and not finding him, I gathered he'd gone to the bathroom. When I went into the office, the office manager/guidance counselor/basketball coach (that "title" speaks volumes about our school!) wasn't at his desk. I gasped out, "I need a man!"

The director and assistant director burst out laughing and both responded, "I never thought I'd hear you say that!"

(The child was located and calmed quickly.)

****************************

This morning's Shabbat services at my shul included the Bat Mitzvah of the daughter of two women. Our congregation has no lack of queer parents, but the children tend to be significantly younger. Indeed, it was the only the congregation's second queer Bar/Bat Mitzvah. And charmingly, it was quite like every other such event I've attended...overdressed relatives, and giggling overdressed teenagers (I suppose, when you are 13, where else can you wear elbow-length knitted multicolored gloves?).

This is the third week in a row I've made it to Saturday morning services. A friend teased me, "Oh, upping synagogue attendance around a simcha! (happy event)" and sure, that's part of it. Another part of it is that since our trip for my nephew's first birthday, we've really cleared our schedules. I am enjoying the calm, and the opportunity to strengthen my religious commitment, that has resulted.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Hospital Packing Advice

So, obsessive organizer that I am, I'm making up our hospital packing list. Here's what I have, put together from childbirth class and my pregnancy planner. Any advice? Items you found invaluable?? Please read desperate annotations.

--pillows
--hot/cold pack
--snacks (what kind??)
--flexi-straws, cup with straw
--lip balm, preggie pops
--camera!!!
--my phone book
--money for vending machine
--reading material for Co (I'm assuming this suggestion is for afterwards??)
--comfy going home outfit for Co
--several nightgowns
--robe and slippers
--nursing bras
--3-4 pairs of underwear
--toiletries for both of us
--my bathing suit
--change of clothes for me
--phone & charger
--diapers (they don't give you diapers??)
--nail clippers
--blankets (for Flipper)
--clothing for Flipper (how much??)

Thanks, people. Holy crap, we are having a baby.

Nervous

What does nausea mean? You know, at like, 37 weeks? Which is full term?

Monday, November 12, 2007

The Adorable Z.

Here she is...my precious little "niece" Z!

Running with Maggie in our across-the-street park (yes, Maggie is the green tube sock):

Z. & Maggie in Prospect Park

Rolling in the leaves, also in the park:

Z in the Leaves

And I saved the cutest for last -- Z. plays the "paw game" with Maggie:

Z Plays the Paw Game

Random Thoughts Roundup

Here is one way I know I am old: while "station-surfing" in the car, I am more apt to land on the station with "Fresh" in the title, or even the one that bills itself as an Oldies station, than the one with "Z" in its name. Sigh.

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My best friend from college, A., (the blog is her wife's) visited this weekend with her delicious 2 1/2 year old daughter Z. Z. was taken with Maggie (she lives with two much larger dogs, so I think Maggie's diminutive size was the hook) and spent much of the visit attending to her: moving her bed around, including putting it up on the futon, bringing her treats, and nuzzling her. It was extraordinarily cute.

Co took the camera with her to Due Date Buddy's shower, but A. got some awesome (and, because they don't show the face, bloggable) pix. I'll put them up when I get them emailed (ahem).

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My mom has secured a subletted room in our neighborhood so she can be on hand to see, and help out with, Flipper. She has it pretty much through the month of December, and then can likely use the place for a few days here and there. She's been very involved with my nephew, since she and my sister live ten minutes from each other, and I'm touched that she is being so proactive about being involved with Flipper as well.

------------------------------

Co and I both anticipated (before Nephew S. was born) that it would cut us to the quick when people made comments about how much Nephew S. looks like "the family." Now that this is a reality -- he looks just like my sister as a baby, and therefore, just like my father as a baby -- it doesn't bother either of us in the slightest. I love how much S. looks like my family, but I am not at all bothered that Flipper will not. I know that he will be fully accepted into my family regardless...my dad is obsessed with familial connections (he brought pictures of himself as a baby to S's first birthday party, as my sister requested, and actually took pictures of S. with the pictures propped up next to him) but I still think he'll be loving with Flipper. and my mom? Well, as I said, she's already rented her room.

Friday, November 09, 2007

A Little Friday Humor

Co has begun to organize some music for labor CDs (a process kick-started by our meeting with our doula yesterday). She downloaded some special music, like the theme song from the T.V. show Flipper....and a song by this guy called "Le Sorcier Du Flipper."

Yes, people, that's "Pinball Wizard" in French. It is too, too funny, even if you are not a francophile. And I am.

(For our other child, she downloaded his version of "Maggy May.")

Wednesday, November 07, 2007

A Question

I am trying to think of more than one question so I can couch this one, but what the heck. I am going to go ahead and post about lochia:

what kind of post-partum pads do we need? Are regular old sanitary napkins enough or do we need something special?

Thank you for playing.

Monday, November 05, 2007

Pregnancy Update

Co is doing well. Just a few days ago she noticed that her feet are starting to swell. And she has bouts of feeling as though a human being were trying to claw his way out through her pelvic floor. But such is pregnancy. Honestly, I hope hers continues to be this uneventful. Knock wood.

She is working on a major deadline, and on occasion staying up after I go to bed. She came to bed one night this weekend at 3 in the morning, and whispered to me, "I'm not even tired! I have all this energy! Is that normal?" I responded, "Yes. You're supposed to be using it to nest!!"

But in fact, earning money is her way of nesting, and a valid one at that. Besides, I am nesting enough for the both of us. I bought baby detergent this weekend. I am in my glory.

In other news: due to superstition we are not having a shower. We are both okay with this, but (I at least) have pangs when I see others getting the attention and, it must be said, the loot, while I scramble around picking up free diapers off cr*igslist. I have set up registries, and I hope that after Flipper is born, people will, well, use them. (Which is SO IN NO WAY AIMED AT ANY OF YOU; this is my venting space, so there I am, venting.)

But one thing about not having a shower: when people give us baby gifts I am literally bowled over and brought to tears. It is touching enough when we receive hand-me-downs from my sister, and loving blogger friends, and even random cr*igslist strangers. So far we have received a womb sounds bear and a set of baby music CDs from my colleagues, and today we got in the mail the most beautiful hand-made sweater from an awesome blogger. We will post a picture. It is gorgeous.

P.S. The dresser in my last post is from this site. Their thematic furniture/linens collection (listed on left of screen) are mostly gendered (Boys Like Trucks??), but a few of them are fun are useful for both genders.

Sunday, November 04, 2007

Make Room for Flipper

Today, at long last, was our handyman appointment. (Actually, the original handyman cancelled, and I called people from cr*igslist ads until I found someone with availability today. I have been waiting too long!!)

So, we played what Co calls "Flipper Tetris" and moved things around so that a) we could set up Flipper's dresser/changing table, and b) made space for his P*ck N' Pl*y in our bedroom. We actually ordered it, along with some sheets, B*rt's B**s baby products, newborn wipes, and a baby healthcare kit...the entire order was virtually free thanks to some gift certificates we earned with our credit card. I am a big fan of such programs.


I also went to the grocery store for baby laundry detergent, so now I can officially start the fun part of nesting: bringing stuff up from the basement and setting up Flipper's little area. I'm superstitious about doing it, but I am also dying to do it.

So here is Flipper's dresser, perfect for our little dolphin boy. It's a gift from my mom. (My dad gave us the giant stuffed dolphin.)

Because Oneofhismoms wants to know...

I saw this meme on several blogs, but I figured nobody cared what I have read. (Okay, I admit I created the "What Lo's Reading" link; I figure books sometimes spark conversation, and indeed they have. But what I have read in the past?)

But now I have been tagged, sort of, so here you go.

The Instructions:
1. Bold what you have read.
2. Italicize those you started but couldn’t finish.
3. Strike through what you couldn’t stand.
4. Add an asterisk to those you’ve read more than once.
5. Underline those on your to-read list.
6. ? for can’t remember if I ever tried to read it or not.

Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell
Anna Karenina
Crime and Punishment
Catch-22
One Hundred Years of Solitude
Wuthering Heights*
The Silmarillion
Life of Pi: a novel
The Name of the Rose
Don Quixote
Moby Dick
Ulysses (I read one chapter in a high school class)
The Odyssey
Pride and Prejudice
Jane Eyre
A Tale of Two Cities
The Brothers Karamazov
Guns, Germs, and Steel: the fates of human societies
War and Peace
Vanity Fair
The Time Traveler’s Wife
The Iliad
Emma
The Blind Assassin
The Kite Runner
Mrs. Dalloway
Great Expectations
Atlas Shrugged
Reading Lolita in Tehran: a Memoir in Books
Memoirs of a Geisha
Middlesex
Quicksilver
Wicked: the life and times of the wicked witch of the West* (I read the sequel too)
The Canterbury Tales
The Historian: A Novel
A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man
Love in the Time of Cholera
Brave New World
The Fountainhead
Foucault’s Pendulum
Middlemarch
Frankenstein
The Count of Monte Cristo
Dracula
A Clockwork Orange
Anansi Boys
The Once and Future King
The Grapes of Wrath
The Poisonwood Bible: A Novel
1984
Angels & Demons
The Inferno
The Satanic Verses
Sense and Sensibility

The Picture of Dorian Gray
Mansfield Park
One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest
To the Lighthouse
Tess of the D’Urbervilles
A Tree Grows In Brooklyn*
Oliver Twist
Gulliver’s Travels
Les Misérables
The Corrections
The Amazing adventures of Kavalier and Clay
The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time (This is on my list to read, but I don't know how to underline)
Dune
The Prince
The Sound and the Fury
Angela’s Ashes: A Memoir
The God of Small Things
A People’s History of the United States : 1492-present (I used parts of it when I taught American History, but I have never read it all the way through)
Cryptonomicon
Neverwhere
A Confederacy of Dunces
A Short History of Nearly Everything
Dubliners
The Unbearable Lightness of Being
Beloved
Slaughterhouse-Five
The Scarlet Letter
Eats, Shoots & Leaves
The Mists of Avalon
Oryx and Crake: a novel
Collapse : How Societies Choose to Fail or Succeed
Cloud Atlas
The Confusion
Lolita
Persuasion
Northanger Abbey
The Catcher in the Rye
On the Road
The Hunchback of Notre Dame
Freakonomics : a Rogue Economist Explores the Hidden Side of Everything
Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance : an Inquiry into Values*
The Aeneid
Watership Down
Gravity’s Rainbow
The Hobbit
White Teeth
Treasure Island
David Copperfield
The Three Musketeers

More Good News!

Click on over here to meet baby Hudson!!

Friday, November 02, 2007

Friends for Flipper!

Check out the excellent news here and here!

Thursday, November 01, 2007

Quotables

My student: "Did your wife have the baby yet?"

(I have never actually used the word wife with them; I said partner.)

Co: "I can feel both of my children, one through my abdomen, and one through my ass."

[Maggie likes to sit behind her while she works, between her butt and the back of the chair.]

Bio-Moms, Take Note

A month or two ago, Co ordered a maternity/nursing nightgown. When it came, there was a teeny matching onesie that came along with it. Co thought it was cheesy; she'd actually avoided the nighties that advertised this option, and thought this one didn't have the onesie. I thought it was precious and exclaimed over how cute it was and how delighted I was that she'd made the mistake and I couldn't wait to take their picture together.

For my birthday, Co gave me a nightie with a matching onesie for Flipper. And, it turns out, it wasn't easy. There are lots of mother-daughter and father-son outfits, she told me, but mother-son doesn't exist, and mother-gender neutral is hard to come by. But she found one.

Because, she told me, I'm the mother, too.

Is she best or is she the best??