Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Introducing Mia

Everyone, this is our daughter!

Mia Elisabeth Pizarro was born Sunday, October 25, at 6:50 a.m. She weighed 7 pounds, 12 ounces, and she was 20 inches long. I have so much I want to write about the past five days that it feels like my head could burst. But if I don't squeeze in a nap this afternoon, I'm in for a scolding from my husband. So for now I'll just say we're home, we're tired, and we are having a ball with this little girl.

p.s. Mia is already making headlines ... check out her dad's last column before his paternity leave!

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Losing it? Perhaps just a bit.

Realization: "Nesting" just means that a pregnant woman HAS NOTHING LEFT TO DO. When the crib, the clothes, the car seat are all ready, well ... guess I might as well organize the goddamn spice cabinet!


Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Happy week 40!

Check out that belly, wouldya? And I'm even sucking in!

So since we found out we were pregnant in mid-February, every Wednesday morning before I even get out of bed, I have marked the new weekly milestone by chirping at a sleeping Sal, "Happy week 11!" "Happy week 25!" And so on, and so forth. And no, I'm sure that did not get annoying to him AT. ALL.

So to hear myself say "40" this morning was, um, crazy and unbelievable. But here we are, at the due date. Evidently this kid doesn't realize it comes from a family who makes deadline.

I saw the doctor yesterday, and she said I'm 2 centimeters dilated and that she could feel the baby's head. Hooray! There's a head!

I celebrated my due date today by splurging on a prenatal massage. It's been months since I have spent 60 whole minutes feeling THAT comfortable in my own body. It was bliss. Of course, I have also been having contractions all afternoon (not the real deal) (at least, I don't think it's the real deal) (I'm new at this) so half the massage was spent fretting that my water might break all over the fancy table. At least they had lots of towels!

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Presents for everyone!

Is there anything more fun than random, unexpected surprises being delivered to your front door? I DON'T THINK SO! I mean, it's completely awesome to get a package you ordered yourself. And then followed breathlessly via online tracking from New Jersey to Utah to Sacramento to San Jose to right there to your very own house - oh boy, do I get giddy about packages. But when a treat drops onto your doorstep from out of the blue?! EEEEEEE!

This has happened to me twice recently. For instance, just now a FedEx guy delivered a surprise package from my first college roommate, Paige. Well, correction: My FIRST college roommate was an angry girl named Michelle who sulked a lot and refused to decorate her side of the room. One of the first things she said to me was, "The thing about me is, when someone's a bitch to me, I'm all 'BITCH, you better step OFF.' " It's lovely to meet you, too, Michelle! A few weeks later I moved in with Paige, who was a thousand times more pleasant, and not just because she was a candyholic who kept troves of milk duds and peanut butter cups on hand. Paige and I also decorated our room by dangling empty beer cans from the ceiling. Oh, college. You make me smile.

Anyway, so the surprise package. It contained a gift for the baby - a soft, snuggly blanket decorated with dots. Red, brown, blue and orange DOTS! I am loving me some dots, you guys. And she bought it awhile ago, so she didn't even know I had dots in the baby's room already. A delicious coincidence!

Wrapped in the blanket was a book for mom and dad called "How to con your kid." It's full of inventive ways of getting your child to do stuff it doesn't want to do. My favorite idea so far is about getting your kid to eat veggies by giving those foods cooler names. Carrots become "orange suns." Broccoli is "baby trees." Love it.

But there was a third present in the package, this one for good ol' Chickenbone, who has been woefully left out of this whole baby-gift thing. And don't even THINK he hasn't noticed.

See that pink thing? It's called a "candy ball" from PetCandy. It's the perfect treat for dogs like Chickens who love to chase after tennis balls but can't quite get their little jaws around them. He's already nuts for this toy. Check out this glare, which means "I dare you to try to take this away, suckah":

Sorry for the crappy quality of these photos, but I had to take them with my BlackBerry because my good camera is in the car. IN THE LABOR BAG OMG. Anyway, thank you so much, Paige - especially from Chickens!

OK, the other gift I got was from my crazy-talented friend Robyn. Merely because I left a comment on this post. I'm telling you, I should have had to do far more to earn treats this neat.

The cool thing is that I had already fallen in love with her little kitchen towel embroidery projects, which she had written about earlier. So I went to pieces to have one of my very own. Also in the package were these adorable sushi potholders.

Robyn said she had to fight the urge to add some blood to the end of that chopped-off hand on the left. While I personally would have appreciated that, I suppose she made the right call since I won't have to hide these for company. Thanks, Robyn!

Monday, October 12, 2009

OK, kid, ready when you are.

For most of my pregnancy, I haven't been prone to those teary emotional spells that come over new mommies as they prepare to welcome their baby into the world. Of course, I'm beyond excited about everything, and I've had a blast getting the room and house ready for our new son or daughter, but I've kept the waterworks to a minimum.

But a few weeks ago, I rounded up all the baby clothes we've received at showers and from friends and relatives and threw them into the washer with, naturally, a cupful of Dreft. And when I opened up that dryer and caught a whiff of that OMGTHISSMELLSLIKEBABY soap, and when I saw this little green sock sticking out from the mound of clothes, I nearly swooned from the WOW of it all. And folding up all those impossibly tiny socks and jammies did, in fact, get me quite choked up.

I'm so happy to finally have a few minutes to sit down and post these pictures I have been taking for months. My maternity leave began last week, two weeks before my due date, and it has been so nice to have a some time to mentally prepare and to rest. I'm still feeling mostly OK, but I do have one major complaint that has finally pushed me into god-let's-get-this-over-with territory: My hands are a disaster. Evidently carpal tunnel syndrome is a common ailment in late pregnancy - it's a circulation thing. It's not my wrists, but my hands themselves. And while they are pretty stiff and achy all day, at night they hurt so much I can't even clutch the covers to pull them up. Last night I even woke up to find that one finger on my right hand was curled up and would not uncurl! I'm told this problem will vanish practically the moment I have the baby, so I shouldn't have to suffer too much longer. Stupid useless appendages!

But anyway, OK, on to the baby's room. Which used to be a guest room/office. Here's what it looked like before:

This summer, I spent my two-week vacation painting the ceiling and walls a color called Plastic Pear. For days as I painted, I couldn't decide if the color was crisp and bright and fun, or if it looked like urine.

Luckily all that blue tape was casting quite a strange tint over everything, so when I finally yanked all that crap off, I was pleased.

My most prized possession in the room is the big huge reclining armchair. I must have sat in three dozen rocking chairs at at least four stores, and this is the only one that could even remotely be described as comfortable. The regular rockers were too hard or jabby, and they didn't go up high enough so you could lean your head back. This chair, it feels like heaven. I've already taken four naps in it. And do you see the little red table next to the chair? Found it on clearance on Target. That's where mommy's cocktail goes!

Here's a picture of the crib and the polka-dot bedding set I fell in love with. I like how it's not a THEME, it's just cute and fun and colorful. The soft little lamb cuddler thinger was a shower gift from the best man in our wedding and his wife.

A closer look at the bedding, which is from Land of Nod. I love the brown dotted crib sheet! It also came with a solid yellow one.

Here's the top of the chifferobe, which is a somewhat unusual piece of furniture but it was perfect for our purposes. This room conveniently has NO CLOSET so we needed something with a little bit of hanging space. However we didn't want a gigantic armoir, because we also need lots of drawer room. The chifferobe is the best of both worlds, with one half devoted to hanging space and shelves and the other a tall stack of deep drawers. Anyhow, sitting on top are all the cool children's books we've received, as well as a cute lamp and my birthday gift from Sal, a radio/CD/iPod player that has already been used one million times.

The very first things I bought for this room, before I knew the paint color or anything, were these adorable prints from an Etsy shop called barkingbirdart. It was so hard to pick just a few!

A treasured gift from my girlfriend Amy, whose talented friend used a sewing machine and some fabric to make these burpcloths so much more adorable than spit rags have any right to be. And look! Polka dots!

Here's the other dresser/changing table. Between the chifferobe and this, I think we might have secured enough room to put away all of baby's things. And holy crap, does this kid already have a ton of things. But wait! What's that on top of the dresser?!

Why, thank you for asking. Those would be the favorite childhood toys of mom and dad. The green monkey was Sal's when he was a little boy. It was the mascot of this old San Jose amusement park called Frontier Village. The brown bear was a gift my mom's friend gave me when I was a baby. It used to have really cute brown eyes, but my dog Max was fond of chewing the bear's face off, which always sent me into HYSTERICS. My mom performed "surgery" each time this happened and was able to save the eyes a couple of times, but one time I guess they were goners, so she sewed on these red buttons. My point is, it didn't always look so scary. I halfway feel like I should go out and find some freaky little stuffed animal for our baby - the ones we have now are way too normal-looking to join this bunch.

So, that's the baby's room! And about an hour ago, our first batch of cloth diapers was delivered, meaning I get to use the "R" word now - ready. I have a good friend who likes to point out that you're never READY to have a baby, and I can buy that. But my great big 1,000-things-long list of things that must be done before the birth is now entirely crossed off. So maybe I'll just say I'm ready in all the ways I know how to be.

Oh, and also, the baby and I were under strict orders not to get this show under way until after Sal and I saw "Star Wars in Concert," which we did last night!