Sunday, April 26, 2009

More Like Not Me Sunday

I doubt Mckmama is doing her blog carnival where everyone fesses up about the things that may or may not have happened to them lately. She is still in Boston with Stellan, waiting to see what their next move is. Head over to her site to check up on them.

If I tried to recount a week's worth of things that simply did not occur, we'd be here all day. So, I decided to just tell you about yesterday instead.

Sunday, at a picnic for my cousin's kid's 1st birthday, my niece did not spit up all over the front of my shirt and it did not drip down underneath to my belly button. I totally did not give myself a mini sponge bath in front of some relatives and others who weren't so relative.

Oh, and I did not keep the shirt on and wear it to a friend's baby shower 7 hours later. That would be disgusting.

My 10-week-old niece did not shriek through the majority of said two-hour baby shower. She's way too mild mannered for that and I'm sure no one was annoyed by her screaming. It was not reminiscent of this:

Happy Monday! Hope yours is filled with less baby bodily functions and ear-piercing cries :)

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Death to Pepe Le Pew

I have been meaning to write this post for about 10 ten days now. Not because it's all that important but more because it majorly disrupted things.

Last Wednesday night (10 days, I was just guessing before) I was moving about my living area--the family room in the basement--and getting ready for bed. It was around midnight or a little after.

I hear this scratching and squeaking outside one of the windows. Some of our basements have deep, three-feet window wells, so it's not unheard of for something to fall in. Usually all we find are mice. Well, this was quite a bit louder than a mouse. And creepier.

I was afraid it was a person, so I went upstairs like a little kid and woke my dad up to come check and see what was outside my window :)

We slowly pulled back the curtain and shined a flashlight on it, careful not to startle whatever it was.

Lo and behold, a skunk. Well, what the heck do you do? The thing can't get out. We have no idea if it has rabies or anything like that. Also, it's dark out so it'd be tough to see if he had any friends lingering about. You don't want to go out and risk getting sprayed. (We thought of trying to put something down there to help it crawl back out, but again, the stink.)

So, our last middle of the night option was to call uptown to the police dept and see what they had to say about it. (We didn't use the emergency number, don't worry.) They sent a guy over a few minutes later.

When the cop showed up, his first solution was, "Well, I'll just go shoot it." Um. Okay.

So we went and warned my sleeping mother a gun would be fired at a skunk outside her window.

She sat upright and said she was going to be shot dead in her bed. No, really. That was her first response. I'm not even sure it was a question.

We ended up trekking out to my grandma's house at 2:30am to stay there because the stench engulfed the house. Thankfully we weren't directly hit, but the window took the blunt of it and the odor just sort of seeped through.

The upstairs/main level of our house smells fine most of the time now because it's been able to air out. However, the basement is still stinky. Not quite burning-my-eyes-and-throat stinky like it was initially, but still too gross to sleep/constant breathe.

I've been camping out upstairs on the floor in the baby's room since, while my sister's been on the living room couch. The greatest news tonight is that we hauled up a twin mattress from a non-stinky storage room downstairs that I will now use until the stench disappears from my normal sleeping area.

Anyway, here's a lesson to sum up a VERY LONG NIGHT: Shoot a skunk only if you are unable to get sprayed on your own. Or you're a cop in a small town and never get to use your gun.

P.S. The funniest thing about the skunk shooting is that the cop then decided to put the skunk in a garbage bag and then PUT IT IN HIS CAR to dispose of it. Um, not so bright. Suffice it to say that the guys who had to use the car the next day weren't so pleased with the decision.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Thoughts on Blogs, Babies, and 'Bama

I am going to preface this by saying that I am fully aware that I have had baby on the brain lately. Not so much because I'm dying to have one tomorrow or anything (I'll consider it for next week, though), but because how could you NOT have baby on the brain while lovin' on this lil sweetie pie everyday:

Baby Girl here is going to be 8 stinkin' weeks old in a few days. Where has the time gone??

Plus, it doesn't help when you know a dozen pregnant ladies right now, either.

Okay, back on track...

Earlier this evening, I indulged my 100-times-a-day habit of checking on the updated Tweets by Mckmama about how Stellan is doing (not awesome, so check it out and pray!)

She sent out a post alerting everyone to pray for and learn about the mother of a very sick baby girl, April, who may not make it in-utero, and most likely not outside of the womb. What makes this new blog/story so interesting for me is that the mom is an unmarried, Christian woman. Let's just say that it's not exactly the easiest position to be in. Having a baby out of wedlock? People may shake their heads and move along. A Christian girl gets pregnant and all hell breaks loose. Well, that's not entirely fair. Some people are incredibly loving and look past circumstance to see the person. But I think most would agree that Christians tend to be a bit more likely to gasp, whisper and stare/glare than their secular counterparts.

I digress again...

Anyway, the first post I read ended with something that caused me to write this post: "God does not punish people with babies (sorry, Mr. President, you got that wrong)."

Even though she has been through a lot with the unexpected pregnancy followed by the dire diagnosis for her baby girl and who knows what else, she is confident that this girl was no accident and is of the greatest value, both to her and to God.

And yes, the President actually said that babies are punishment (if the pregnancy was a "mistake"). Watch the video. Seriously. And if you aren't already familiar, check out how extreme our President is on the issue of abortion.

This really got me thinking about how people view babies. I can understand that having a baby can be really difficult for some people, especially when the result (a baby) is not an ideal situation for whatever reason. I get that. BUT instead of thinking of this "unplanned" baby as PUNISHMENT, I think we should look at him/her as an OPPORTUNITY.

We make mistakes. Every single one of us. Some seem bigger than others. Some mistakes are exposed to the whole world to see while others stay a secret. But I think that while God most importantly offers forgiveness--for sure and for certain--he also offers us the chance to change the direction of our lives with our next decision. And the one after that. And the next one...

Most, if not all, of the sin in my life is based purely on selfishness. It's all about me. I'd venture to guess that it's the same for you, too. When Obama suggests that he'd rather his daughters have an abortion rather than face the "punishment" of having a baby at an inopportune time, I find myself glad I'm not his daughter. I like to think that a father should be the one to comfort and support his child in a time of need instead of compounding the problem with severe physical pain and psychological anguish.

I am so thankful that I have a father here on Earth who loves me regardless of my mistake and does whatever he can to help me choose a better path. He's the bestest. And I cannot even fathom how much more this is true of my Heavenly Father!

I'm having a really hard time grasping how huge--and wrong--this view of unwanted children is. It actually makes me feel ill. And angry. Very angry. Because to me the answer is clear. But no one ever said doing the right thing would be easy, and we are living in the middle of a world consumed by selfish desires and little else.

Last thoughts...

Is having a baby out of wedlock or at an inconvenient time truly punishment? Or is it the chance to turn a potentially ugly situation into a beautiful representation of God's love and grace?

Seriously--How can you not be in awe of how good God is when you look at this sleeping angel??

Friday, April 3, 2009

Stuff I'm Diggin'

I am a big fan of snacks. I don't think I'm much of a grazer throughout the day, but recently I have been noticing that I get super pumped over some of the snacks or mini-meals I've had. They aren't even unique or original, but they make me happy :)

1. Hummus. It's wonderful. Except the red roasted pepper kind. Blech. Gimme the real stuff: the garlicky, beany, tahini-y kind. Anyway, I think it was at Zankou Chicken in Hollywood when I first fell in love. (It's this awesome Lebanese/Mediterranean place...way good.) I was picking up a lunch order for work (ah, the days of being a PA...) and I decided to get a small side of it for myself. As a girl who loves her carbs, I was pretty psyched about the warm pita that accompanied the hummus. I wasn't even out of the parking lot before I was sampling my lunch. I had thought I had tasted hummus before, but this wiped out any vague memory of it. It was that yummy. So now I spread it on sandwiches, dip carrots or other veggies into it...but really, all I want to do most of the time is eat it with a spoon!

2. Indoor S'mores. I know I'm not the brainchild of this delightful invention, but I wish I were. It's not health food, but it has to be a tad better for you than the full-on chocolate bar version. All you do is take couple chocolate graham crackers, slap a marshmallow or two between them and pop them into the microwave for about 10 seconds. Or until your marshmallow is on the verge of exploding. And then enjoy the gooey deliciousness. Pure genius.

3. Chocolate Milk. We're talking Nesquick here, not the store-bought, syrup-in-a-jug stuff. Sometimes I feel like I'm sorta kinda on the verge of being hungry but a) it's either too close to meal time or b)I'm just not sure what I'm in the mood for. (Or c) there's a good chance it's boredom.) Either way, I have found that drinking a small glass of milk often cures this dilemma. I don't know if it cures the thirst part or the hunger part--or both--but it works. I find this especially helpful when I'm in the mood for something sweet but nothing heavy like a dessert. That's where the Nesquick comes in. It's perfect. It can be fairly healthy, too if you use skim milk. And it adds extra calcium to your diet. Bonus!

4. Couscous. Is it a grain? Is it a pasta? Is it entirely under-used by most people? (It's pasta, and yes.) Oh how I love love love its versatility. I could eat that stuff all day. It as easy to cook as instant rice but has the fullness of a good, whole wheat pasta. My most recent concoction consisted of Tri-Color couscous mixed with Italian-style tomatoes (drained) and garbanzo beans. It made me happy. I ate it as a main dish for dinner one night and then had it cold as a salad for lunch the next day. And the next. It's also good with nuts, raisins...the combinations are endless. It cost me about $6-$8 for a 32oz canister. So. Worth. It.

5. Spinach Salad. I hate salad. What is the point? Am I a rabbit? But I have been scarfing this spinach salad I've been making A LOT of lately. I put a couple handfuls of baby spinach on a bowl or plate, depending on whether it's my main dish or side dish. I then scoop some 1% Cottage Cheese on top. I don't use much, just enough to act in place of the dressing. Feta is yummy, too. I then section an orange and toss it with the other two ingredients. Top it off with some freshly ground pepper. (To section an orange, simply cut the peel away--including the pith/white stuff--with a knife instead of peeling it like normal. Then roughly chop into bite-size pieces. This ensures you get the best juicy, non-stringy fruit.) The different flavors totally and strangely compliment one another, and I'm sure it'd be great topped with some beans or cranberries, too.

Ahhh, I love beans. But they should be their own topic someday. I have much to say about them and all their glory.

Should you be so lucky to read all about it some time!