Sunday, March 31, 2013

Happy Easter! and a linky

He is Risen

Happy Easter, one and all. The little beauties shown above (help me out anyone? I have no idea what they're called.) are popping up all over our apartment complex and indeed all over the city I live in. They must not be very elite or fussy little bushes, because they are in every nook and cranny of grocery store parking lots, alley sidewalks and the like, but dang it, I like them. I like slum flowers.

Today I'm linking up!

Grace and Kayla and Ericka are letting us in on their Open to Interpretation game, which sounds like my kinda fun.

You'll find that my Easter outfit is sufficiently underwhelming, given my almost 19 week bump is selfishly eliminating half of my wardrobe choices and...maybe I should think about maternity shopping soon? But isn't it so much fun to see what you can squeeeeeze into and make believe that it's so impressive that your very pregnant body can still handle that Anthro skirt and maybe no one will notice the straining seams? No, the answer is it's not so fun, it's emotionally taxing. Buy maternity, Jess.

On the other hand, you'll find that Jordan has risen to the challenge with a beaut of an Easter dress, compliments of Sean's parents. Dear Jordan: it pays to be the first grandchild on both sides. Your closet is a wonderland. Relish it now, your nemesis is baking as we speak. Love, Mom.

Probably should have snuck our photographer/husband/father into the mix but he's suffering from a rather sore to searing to awful throat right now and may have very nearly OD'd on NyQuil last night so his eyes were slightly crossed allll 1 1/2 hours of Easter Mass and even his current cup o' boldest joe hasn't unblurred them.

My Easter Best (really, this is the best I got)

* Old Blue: ancient Anthro that I squirmed and shimmied and twisted over the bump
* Shawl: Target
* Shiny Flats: Macy's
* Danglies: really really old Target, like high school status
* Chalky White Calves: haven't seen the sun in eight months

Jordan's ImpressFest:

* Except for her gold jellies (Old Navy) I really have no idea. It's from Sean's parents and I think it was from a specialty type shop in Northern California, where they hale from.
* Sumo Nub: never-been-shorn twenty months of luscious locks/her mother can't help but mock her.
* Grumpy grumpy mug in the top photo: she wants my chai.

Happy Easter everyone! Enjoy your Cadbury eggs and watching the under-5's frantically scatter for sweets. That's where I'll be. Go link up with all the rest!

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

the apple and the tree and all that jazz

I think I've mentioned before that Jordan is becoming increasingly expressive. Her nonsensical statements are given context by her emphatic inflections; her facial movements convey meaning almost as effectively as real words would. I suppose I shouldn't be surprised by my daughter's newfound deliberate and exaggerated use of eyebrow, since her mother uses this facial tool as much, as often, and as vehemently as her own vocabulary.

I couldn't tell you why in the heck I'm making that face, how Sean caught it on camera, or why I found it in his "Favorites of All Time" pic folder. I look pissed, and it seems like I have a lazy eye. I can tell you that the top right was procured by asking Jordan to do her "frown face" and the bottom right...probably because I wouldn't put the super spicy salsa on Jordan's chip at the Mexican restaurant we were at.

Anyway, Jessie:brow expressions as Italians:empathic hand gesturing, so do enjoy the following fruits of Jordan being exposed to an overly demonstrative mother on the daily.*

Sean insists that when he was labeling this video for me, the auto-correct inserted "expresive." Mmhm. It did not go unnoticed or unpunished.

*I totally get if you don't want to waste your time on someone else's home video that she thinks is the bees knees. In case you do: the first 20-30 seconds is where the gold is. I don't know what she's going on about.

Monday, March 25, 2013

favorites and not

Not to be confused with Hallie's, this is my third installment of all things Jordan. However it's not all fun and games this time because.... this kid

has been challenging me lately.

Veteran moms, gimme shelter. I feel like life with Jo lately is like life with Jim Carrey in Me, Myself and Irene. She is discovering her own will, pushing boundaries, exercising defiance and flat out rebellion, being the cutest, making new and hilarious facial expressions, hosting thrilling one-ended conversations, slapping me across the face, throwing food the length of the table with all the ability and agility of Eric Gagne, and oh so many other things. In that order. She volleys between adorable and horrible at breakneck speed, and it's really difficult to ascertain whether I should laugh or cry or yell or hide.

Take Friday. We're walking to the car, delighting in the squirrels, talking like the best of girlfriends. She reaches for my glasses, which, despite being five years and two prescriptions old, are vital to my well being and survival. I wrestle them away from her because Jordan has all the "soft touches" of John Cena of WWE Raw, and she swings her hand all the way back and lands a slap on my cheek reminiscent of Gone with the Wind. She's twenty months, but you guys, it hurt. Straight up, I was the Ashley Wilkes to her Scarlet O'Hara. And that old guy retrieving the groceries from his trunk was the Rhett Butler, lurking on our private affairs. It's safe to say I've never been on the receiving end of such an experience (or the delivering end, for that matter), and I was battling a rage blackout while trying to figure out how to address the situation. I landed on my meanest school-marmiest voice and a smart smack on the offending hand. I really thought I had been sufficiently intimidating. But she just nestled her head into my neck and sighed "awwwwwwww."


Then there's the impending threat of a picky eater, which Jordan has nevereverevereverever been in her young life. Fried Mexican beetles would have been just as desirable to her as Haagen Dazs Pistachio until lately, when a couple weeks ago she started taking a turn for the finnicky. Which means that if a plate displeases her, it is cleanly swiped from her sight in one fell swoop and on to the carpet. I cannot communicate the temper that flares up within me when this happens. I made my most steadfast vows to never react in anger but rather out of calculation, but I don't know what to do about this?

Time-outs have gone from the horror of Jordan's existence to some kind of reward, as she's thoroughly enjoyed being plopped in her crib the last three or four times I've done it. She's ended up staying in there for 20+ minutes reading to herself - which is a nice break for me to get things done - but clearly marks the end of time outs as a mode of discipline.

Then, but then, she is just the sweetest. She is heartbreakingly affectionate. She shows genuine concern. She understands so much, which is evident even with her lack of vocabulary. She loves her dad.

She is playful and pure. I have never seen a child so intent upon praying; whenever she sees a crucifix, her gaze becomes fixed and her hands become folded until I finish whatever prayer I've chosen for us to recite. At the close of each prayer, she blows kisses to "Jee" or, if we're lucky, "Jeesh" (two syllables are still alluding us, sorry Jesus.)

This whole up-down-up-down-sideways-over-under-up-down emotion thing must just be part of the deal when you're a parent, then? To a toddler anyway? One minute, she has me in stitches asking if she can have a sip of my "tteee" (girl likes her chai), or catching me oh so stealthily trying to sneak a chocolate truffle, but when the inevitable plastic crinkle gives me away I'm confronted with "HEY!!" The next minute, she's staring me straight in the eye as she overturns her plastic Cars plate full of scrambled eggs, or defiantly sauntering away from me as I call her name to come here.

I guess what I didn't count on with parenting is, as much as she's learning and growing, so am I - and maybe even more in my case. This experience is as new to me as it is to her, and I feel that there is a distinct learning curve with your first kid. I hope I have my sh together a little more by August 25 or so. But - and please don't barf here - when Jordan puts her arms all the way around my neck and presses her stinkin' cute little mouth to my cheek, there's just about no better way anyone can say "I love you", don't you think?

Hey so, PS, I don't really know how to do this, but I'm hoping the text that I pasted below turns into something you can actually click to follow me on Bloglovin'. If not, I'm adding the widget to the right, so you can go that route. If not, and you're kind of sick of me anyway, then you don't have to. But I'll miss you...

<a href="">Follow my blog with Bloglovin</a>

Thursday, March 21, 2013

fave five

I have lots of random things piling up in different pinholes of my brain that I want to blog about, but dear Lord, these last two weeks. I've been struggling to find a spare second to pee (slightly important these days), so blogging has taken economy class in the Boeing of my life. But these last two weeks aren't really what I wanted to blog about; I'll spare you the sob story <---- with my ever mounting hormone levels, that's not even really a figure of speech. No really.
The other day I called my mom to confirm that she could pick Jordan up from her sitter's and I started crying. I. Am. Losing. It.

Instead, I thought up some shtuff to rather tardily throw in over at Hallie's. It's fun! You should try it.

1. 1920's

Why Clara Bow, the original for which the term "It Girl" was coined? My mind is a mysterious beast, friends. Since I've been helping out with the preparations for the Life Centers' big fundraiser, the Silent Auction and Dinner-Dance, my imagination has been compelled to wonder how I  would decorate and theme the gala, were I in charge of that aspect of things. (I'm pretty sure this has to do with nesting. I've been planning events in my head fairly nonstop lately and have thoroughly mentally designed three of my five sisters' bridal showers and weddings. Only one of them is in a relationship.) For the Life Centers' charity event, it would be a swanky '20s affair. Guests would sip on mint juleps while a Gish or Fairbanks silent masterpiece played out on a large screen during cocktail hour. The bar would echo the decor of a speakeasy, and while flapper dresses and bowler hats would not be required, dang it, they'd be welcomed. 

Anyway, when I think roaring twenties, Clara Bow just about sums it up in my mind. I mean, seriously. Look at her.

2. In that same vein, look at this iPhone cover:

My iPhone cover broke ages ago and I just spent a good while browsing Etsy for a killer case. I haven't ordered one yet, there are freaking tons on there. Anyone else sick of the "KEEP CALM" crap? Cuz those  are everywhere. The best one I've heard, though, is one that Kimmy told me about that she saw on a card at Paper Source: "FREAK OUT AND THROW STUFF" Classic.

3. Alright, you've convinced me. ("You" being a bunch of my blog crushes and the media in general.)

Sidewalk Skimmers from Madewell. And oh my gosh, in mustard too. I flippin' love mustard and don't own a single article of clothing in the shade. I don't know if I could pull it off...

4. Do you guys watch Jimmy Kimmel Live? I don't, but my sisters showed me this skit which you very well may have seen because it's three years old:

and I just about died. Plus they got like 12 cameos from super famous actors. Jimmy Kimmel must be well liked.

5. My sister is in town from Colorado. Which means these types of shenanigans are going on

Anna also tried attached one of those Pretty Pretty Princess earrings to Jordan's tragus, eyebrow, and nipple. Jordan is clearly less than amused.

Ok now off with you to Hallie's! I'll see you later.

Monday, March 18, 2013

french babymoon: pars une de deux

As promised,, I'm here to tell you of our French adventure in two maybe three parts.

We're pretty at 5 in the morning. (pretty= cross-eyed and frown-smile, respectively.)

I kept a travel journal that I wrote in every night we were over in France, so what you'll be getting here is a shot of Jessie writings 2011 style. I severely edited for your sake because, oh my gosh, I am so verbose. Is it annoying? Don't answer that. I don't think I'm this wordy in real life. But it's like, no detail left undisclosed.

A word before I turn it over to 2011 pregnant, long-winded, journal Jess: Sean and I planned a three-part French adventure. Due to flight delays and complications, all but ONE full day of our Paris leg got cut out. Due to an accommodation snafu, we all but skipped our Avignon leg. So France, to me, is and always will be Nice. I completely edited out all the flight complainy crap and our short first evening in Paris. You're welc.  And any non-italicized text is me, 2013 pregnant, long-winded Jess.

PS - O to the M to the gosh, we ate so much. Almost every paragraph has something about food. I know I was pregnant but mon Dieu. And what's Sean's excuse?

Monday, April 4

Paris Day! We wake up at 9 for complimentary breakfast at the hotel and head out armed with the metro map…uh-oh. We found the station easily enough but there are so many metro lines! After accruing probably several stares, smirks and snorts, the stupid Americans figure out their stop and commence with the throngs from the Champs Élysées. Almost as soon as you emerge from this exit the Eiffel Tower is visible. It’s stunning. Pictures don’t do it justice, but Sean snaps off tons and tons.

We notice no one is in line to go up from the south pillar of the Tower so this seems like the obvious choice right? Stupid Americans…”escaliers uniquement” = stairs only. Well, it’s cheaper, there’s no one in line, we have croissants to burn off, and I’m 5 months pregnant. The ideal choice. To be honest it wasn’t that bad. About 350-400 steps, then the view is worth it. We walk all the way around and see the Seine, the Louvre, and a bunch of other monuments we can’t name. We grab souvies and hot chocolate in the café and look out over Paris. Sean wants to do the second level, but I shoot it down because I didn’t know it was free and I didn’t want more stairs, and Sean doesn’t effectively communicate how much he really wanted to.

When we go back down, we walk through the unfathomably gorgeous park beneath and in the shadow of the tower, the Champs-de-Mars: scattered ponds, old bridges, huge expanses of grass for picnics, random beds of beautiful flowers, and – my fave – pink-blossomed trees in full bloom. We grab two “Parisiennes” (a baguette with ham, cheese, and butter) at a nearby boulangerie and, after the cashier rips us off an extra 1½€ because we look like tourists (we obv did the math after we left) we settle in to a prime bench that looks right at the Tower. Bliss.

We decide to follow the Seine because it’s close and many of Paris’ attractions are on its banks. We grab coffee on a stationary riverboat then start our long walk headed for the Museé d’Orsay. It takes us over an hour to get there…and it’s closed Mondays. Bust. By this time it’s around 3 and our feet kill, but we press on the Ile de Cité and the Notre Dame Cathedral. What a sight that is. I haven’t seen a church anything like it. It’s very dim and all dark gray stone with vibrant stained glass and it’s just…so…high. We walk through all the side chapels – and there are very many – and sit in the pews to take it all in. We stroll the circumference of the church outside but decide against going upstairs due to lines. Sean gets photos of “the monsters” sometimes and more properly known as gargoyles, many of which have severely deteriorated over time. 

But what’s this?! A crêperie next to the Notre Dame? I am all excitement. We each get a “crêpe sucre-beurre” (sugar-butter) and nothing has ever tasted so delectable. 

Whose is whose?

We sit there for awhile before braving the Metro back to the vicinity of the Eiffel Tower. After Sean uses the public motion-sensitive Water Closet that washes the toilet and floor after every use (???), we set out to find a suitable restaurant for dinner. The baby’s hungy. 

Sean gets way excited because he sees Restaurant Ribe and thinks they have ribs. I assure him with not a hint of mockery that that isn’t what is meant by the title, but we check the menu anyway and find it quite appealing. The waitress speaks Anglais and is way friendly, and we get a great window seat. I order scrumptious salmon in butter and cream sauce that comes with fettucine. Sean grabs steak with peppercorn sauce and fries. Dessert comes with the meal: I get “nougat” (which turns out to be pistachio ice cream) with raspberry sauce; Sean, a crème with caramel. Everything was so good and so French.

It was only about 8 and still light out, so we walked around to kill time until the Tower would light up. We walked through a trendy-looking neighborhood and found a cute café. I got a cappuccino and Sean got a Heineken. By 8:30 it was about dusk so we headed to the Champs-de-Mars park to wait. The Eiffel Tower all lit up does not disappoint, and we got there just as it was starting to glow. It looks like it’s made out of gold. 

The scam artists make good use of the picturesque time under the Tower, and we were soon approached by an enthusiastic African selling bracelets blessed with good “mugu mugu.”  Since he had already tied me into the bracelet and strapped one on Sean too, we gave him 4½€ for being entertaining - instead of the 10€ he asked for. He took it and left with a “Hakuna Matata” farewell (no really, he said that. Like from the Lion King). The African brought on a world of pain, because all the other vendors in the park descended on us suckers with their tower keychains and statues so we had to flee.

It had been a long, successful day, so we boarded the metro and got back around 10.

Tuesday, April 5

Oh man. We are up by 7:30 a.m. because we have a 9:30 train. After eating speedily and checking out, we leave ourselves a little over an hour to get across town via Metro. Should be good right? Uh-uh. The first metro stop “Rome” doesn’t take our American cards and we are out of Euros. We walk five minutes further to the Place de Clichy stop and get tickets, but Sean gets stuck in the spindle with our luggage, accruing a line of angry cussing Frenchmen behind him. It was stressful at the time but now it's funny to think of sweaty, anxious, baggage-laden Sean on one side of the spindle while I watch helplessly two feet away. Since his ticket wasn’t working he grabs one off the floor with a prayer that it works. It does. 

Apparently 8:30 is rush hour in Paris because trying to get our huge luggage on to the Metro stuffed like a Thanksgiving turkey with Frenchmen who don’t wear deodorant is death-defying. Baby is not happy with the situation and does flippies in my tummy while I fend off puking. Thank God we change lines after four stops and this one is much less crowded. We make our stop but time is still an issue and we don’t know where our departure gate is. We ask around and make our train with about ten minutes to spare. Phew.

The TGV is high speed so we make Avignon in about two hours and forty minutes despite it being 420 miles away. Avignon weather is much more pleasant than Paris. It’s virtually cloudless and about 70˚. We grab a 40€ taxi ride to our hotel with high hopes of making a fun, full day. Here’s the catch: “Le Golf Grand Avignon” hotel is not in Avignon. It’s twenty minutes and 40€ away, in Vedene. A second catch: we can’t check in between the hours of 12 and 4 because they’re on lunch. Ah. A four hour lunch, but of course? Ok. So we lug our huge bags to the clubhouse (this is a golf resort) for some expensive lunch and three hours of down time. We play Crazy 8’s and I beat Sean six games to four.

 Our little corner of clubhouse.

By the time we check in we’ve already decided we can’t stay in “Avignon.” The room at the resort is beautiful as are the grounds, but there are no bus, train or metro stops and we can afford neither taxi rides nor a rental car to get into Avignon. And this golf resort is secluded, there’s nothing local to do.

With ninja-like maneuvering, Sean finds us a hotel in Nice for Wednesday and Thursday nights, and informs the front desk we’ll be checking out in the morning. We have to eat the cost of this hotel, but oh well. We are able to switch our train tickets from Friday morning to Wednesday morning for an extra 25€. Now we just have to kill a few hours at this sleepy resort, as it’s only about 6 o’clock.

Upon walking the grounds we discover that the only restaurant in a two mile radius is closed for dinner. Baby won’t have that. The front desk suggests ordering a pizza, so we take the brochure. No one at the pizzeria speaks English however, and my French classes from eight years ago are not comin’ up strong for me. Ultimately the front desk orders for us and we enjoy a cheesy French pizza (as in, they don’t cut it into slices so we tear it like cavemen) and a liter of “Coca” on our beautiful terrace at dusk. Sean evens the score – and then-some – on Crazy 8’s and, after watching the better part of a CSI New York episode in French, we call it quits at 10:30.

Til Pars Deux, mon amies.

Thursday, March 14, 2013

moon of babes

I've been trying and trying to come up with Five Favorites so that I can join Hallie. I've been wracking my brain. All I've got is chocolate milk, and I just didn't think a pic of Hershey's syrup would cut it. My creative cup runneth dry. At least it's not my chocolate milk cup.

It's my state of, really it's more my state of mindlessness. This whole week, a phrase has been pinging back and forth across my cranial walls: now I know what my mom used to feel like. Pam in her Prime, or perhaps more appropriately, Pam at her Craziest or Pam at the Height of 8 Children Madness, had homeschooling curriculum for five different grades to plan out and oversee; countless sports and extracurricular events to juggle, chauffer us to and attend; homework to check; meals to cook; toddlers to potty train; babies to bathe; her own blood pressure to monitor; and sleep to lose.

Let me real quick-like give myself a little perspective: I have one child. She's not in school. I'm not even potty training her. She spends most of her time making faces at herself in the mirror, and lets me go about my housewifely duties and/or my mad rush to make myself semi-remotely presentable for work.

Realistically, I have maybe 1/656 the stress my mom used to have (she's on Easy Street now. The youngest is ten and is already quite the mature adult. Like, she shares her sour candies with me and says things like "Don't you think you're overreacting?" to my fifteen-year-old sister. She's pretty much self-sufficient and all that's left to be done is to teach her how to drive and perhaps how to mix my mom a good Bloody Mary.) but this week I does one say it? Stretched too thin? On the brink of psychosis? Everyday I'm shufflin'? (Fine. That last one is unrelated. But now that screechy techno sound is so running through your brain.)

A combination of factors have conspired to get me here. At home, I'm a little bit drowning. At work, I'm so unfathomably slammed that I'm at the point in my professional career where I don't think I'll ever get right-side up again. The lovely woman that babysits Jordan had her own baby this week (woot! woot! welcome baby girl!) so I've been darting about like a headless chicken trying to find care for Jordan, calling in non-existent favors from my mom, and desperately texting my brother for back-up. Additionally, I'm helping out with the Life Centers' annual dinner dance, and have been coming home straight from work and diving into making out bidsheets for the 75 items up for silent auction. I'm kind of exhausted. Physically, mentally. Yet here it is 4:30 in the morning, and I've tried for the last hour to lull myself to sleep with visions of how I'm going to decorate Jordan's room if/when/if we get a house (Paris themed. Eiffel tower lampstand. White and silver chevron curtains. Pale blue walls but for one panel that my sister's boyfriend doesn't know I'm going commission him to paint a Paris cityscape on. Semi-beadboarding. This headboard in a silver/pewter finish.) I finally conceded insomnia's victory and here we are.

So you know what I'm gonna do instead of Ray LaMontagning about all my worries? Tell you about something I've very very very excited about. Sean and I are going on a babymoon. To Kauai. My parents are generously, magnanimously, I'll-never-be-able-to-repay-them-ly taking Jordan for six days while Sean and I get our white Irish tan on (<---- that's just Sean. I tan relatively easily. It's the Swede in me.) I'm not super excited about being in a bathing suit but I'm excited about everything else.

I think I've told you before that Sean and I got pregnant with Jordan a little to a lot sooner than we expected to start our family. As an engaged couple, we schemed great adventures in world traveling before "settling down." God was like "MWAHAHA!" and four weeks after the honeymoon, I was preg with my Bug. So we did a little revision of life plans and decided to do a babymoon. That way, we'll have traveled before "settling down." Tricked You, God. Taking a babymoon was one of the best decision we had made in our marriage up to that point (six months. a lifetime.) It gave us time to focus on each other and experience completely new things, before our focus was to be completely redirected to the new and miraculous being we brought to the world. We decided back then that we would make an effort to take a babymoon whenever we got pregnant. So that's what we're doing. Admittedly, this will probably be our last full-scale, days-at-a-time babymoon. Two kids is a little more than I'm comfortable unloading on my family for an extended period. But long weekends to gorgeous Central California? A trek down to San Diego? Totally doable.

I'm planning on recounting the tale of our first babymoon to you in the next few days. Since I have all the brevity of J.R.R. Tolkein, I'm anticipating a saga in two parts. Hell, maybe even a trilogy if I really want to commit to the Tolkein persona. Consider this post The Hobbit. Here, I'll give you a little preview:

Guess where we went.

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

accomplishments and notcomplishments

Perhaps Sean and I are the only parents that diverge in the most extreme of ways when it comes to name-giving of offspring? Perhaps I'm the only wife that is appalled at the suggestions that fall out of her husband's mouth? Perhaps he's the only husband that chuckles at one of his wife's offerings until he realizes she's serious? At any rate, there's a reason we start the name gaming in the first trimester. Dreams of future children's monikers have to be crushed, eyes have to be rolled, et cetera, et al.

It takes a little longer around here anyway because I have to field the utterly ridiculous. I'll give you a taste:

"Jess, how 'bout Budweiser Chance Pope? We can call him Buddy!"
"I got one: Camaro Chevy Pope"
"Oooo! Jon bon Jovi Pope!!"

Sure, sure, I'll grant you that a driving factor behind even speaking these not-names is to see my brows furrow to the point of connection and my mouth gape aghast for the briefest before I wave Sean off to go screw with someone else's mind. But I'm not lying when I say that I'm not entirely positive, if left to his own devices, that he wouldn't actually name an innocent child one of the above. I'll show you why:

Three of his favorite shirts. Didn't even have to dig through his drawers for these, they were all in the just worn/gonna wear it again tomorrow pile next to the bed.

In the meantime, I'm putting genuinely thought-out options, which I'll give you examples of because I've been assured that they are OFF THE TABLE FOR-E-VER:

"Sean, what do you think of Sienna Katherine?" (I liked this one because it can be shortened to a cute Sienna Kate and her patron could be Catherine of Siena.)
"No. I don't want to name my daughter after your parents' minivan." (Toyota Sienna)

"Ok, what about Piper Isabelle?" (Pip Pope. I'm in love with it.)
"....Oh. You're serious."

So the grand accomplishment of 2013 thus far is that we've arrived at boy's name for this bean, should we have a boy. The one thing about name-deciding between Sean and I is, when we've hit the right one, we both know right away. That's how it happened with Jordan. I said "Jordan Elizabeth?" and Sean said "Absolutely."

I'm not telling you the name though, sorry. Cackle, cackle. But I suggested it via text to Sean a couple of weeks ago, and I got an immediate "Yes. yes. Lock it in." quickly followed by "No one would mess with a kid named ---- ----." Well that's exactly what I was going intimidating name for my son. Should we have a girl, however, I'm not quite sure what we're going to do other than maybe call her "Girl." or "Child." I have an arsenal of lovely girls names that I can't even get out of my mouth before I hear "ew" or "NO" or "seriously?" or *eyebrow raise*

My notcomplishments are piling up around me and threatening to end my very life. I'm clearly resting on my laurels from last week's Spring Cleanfest (alternate titles: Clean or Be Killed: A Husband's Guide to Surviving Nesting or Run, the Hormones are Coming) as evidenced by the following hot messes

 Current living room situation
 Current kitchen situation - kitchuation, if you will
Yesterday's daughter situation

Although I am a little partial to the post-nap faux hawk and am considering baby gel to replicate it whenever I please. But perhaps not the most fem?

I'm also resting on my "I haven't gained any preg weight" laurels, and haven't gone on one of my walks in three weeks - a situation to be remedied today. And while I haven't gained any weight over the five pounds I lost in my first trimester, I've gained three pounds in the last week, undoubtedly due to those stupid cookies that both Ana and Grace maliciously recommended. So...three pounds a week. That rate will put me at +69 by August? Perfect. 

To recap, what I have accomplished in the last week: naming my child in the event I'm having a boy (mental effort only). 
And nothing else.

Friday, March 8, 2013


My sister has been taking a psychology class this semester, and she's running her psych tests on Sean and I like we're her minion lab-rats. They're actually kinda fun, and I thought I'd share one with you guys so you can play them on your significant others.

Ok, you have to pretend ALL of the below things are happening simultaneously:

the baby is crying
the phone is ringing
someone is knocking on the door
the laundry was left outside in the rain
the faucet is running

In what order would you take care of these tasks?

No cheating. Don't look at what each task stands for. Answer first, it's fun.

You're going to try and cheat.



Here, I'll give you a visual of the kind of dingus psychiatrist I'd probably be.

Dr. Tobias Funke
the never-nude

Alright, that's sufficient, now I'll give you your results. Each task represents something in your life, and the task you put first means the most to you, and so on until the last.

The baby represents family
The phone represents your job
The person at the door represents friendships
The laundry represents intimacy
The faucet represents money

I take issue with the laundry representing intimacy. Do guys really ever care about the laundry? Not usually. But do guys care about sex? I think they do... So why would the two be correlated? Don't know.

I thought my results were pretty on par with how things rank in my life. I think a couple of Sean's were transposed. He put the job second and, while he does stress out about his job sometimes, once he clocks out, he's out. Then he put the laundry last and I made my most offended face.

MY results


SEAN's results


Clearly I'm the better spouse and person.

Audrey's having great fun using us as her guinea pigs. She's done like four or five tests on us, and sometimes she'll smirk at an answer and say "Interesting...interesting." Sometimes she'll raise her eyebrows and slowly say "Alright..." Then she gives us the results and Sean and I usually laugh at what it's supposed to "mean" for our relationship. Human observation is great fun, I bet psychologists are endlessly fascinated by their jobs. 

However I don't think I'd put much stock in the little tests. But they're entertaining.
Report back with any dirt on your men.

Thursday, March 7, 2013


I have been a little hard up for blog material lately. Perhaps life has been a little...samey, recently. Or it could be that growing a baby blocks my creativity glands. Understandable, I think, since my body is being sufficiently creative, in the literal sense.

Then a bunch of my * favorite * blogs started doing this Five Favorites with Moxie Wife and I thought, I want in. I can always name a bunch of favorite things.

(@ Jamie - wink.)

And then THEN, Grace tagged me for Five Things which has been floatin' around the 'gram, but I haven't heard of it before now because...I don't know things. But it was fateful and perfect. I'm doing a post about fives, making a post about ten total. (<----- I went to college.)

First, I'm gonna Moxie.

1 - Daughter

This is my favorite daughter. We don't know what we're expecting yet, so I can still say that. However, I will say that I keep on (accidentally) referring to this in utero baby as "he" or "him." So Jordan may be my favorite daughter for awhile?

2 - Breakfast (currently)

Call it a craving. Jordan and I have had pancakes 3 times since Saturday. This morning will make 4. I've been using this recipe and it's perfect. I just add cinnamon. (Honorary Favorites: cinnamon.)

3 - Show (currently)

Hands down. Sean and I are addicted. We burned through the first two seasons and now have to wait until the summer with the commoners for it to come back.

4 - Song (currently)'s a toss up

(Honorary Favorites: Matt Bellamy)

Someday I will I will have a guestroom like this. Look at that wall. I'm in love.

Thanks Hallie!

Now to Grace's F-I-V-E things!

1 - A year ago I didn't even know what a blog was, really. I'd heard the term thrown around like, "oh, she has a blog." or "Dad's reading that football blog again." My friend Meg told me I have to read Camp Patton so I was like, ok.... I'll try it.... Boom. I was opened up to the world of blogging. From CP to link-hop after link-hop after link-hop, I was introduced to the world of blogging. Six months later I started my own. Grace is a gateway drug. Careful of that one.

2 - I'm fifteen weeks today. Fifteen weeks is legit, yo.

3 - I know zero things about cars. The other day I told Sean I saw a sporty little Subaru that looked like a cross between a Mustang and a Porsche, and I think he almost served me divorce papers. However, I work in truck insurance, so I can rattle off the first 6-8 digits of the VIN of just about any tractor or trailer made in the last ten years (they mostly all start the same.) Freightliner: 1FUJBBCK. Volvo: 4V4NC9TG. Kenworth: 1XKWDB9. Useful, right?

4 - I love physical humor. It's probably my favorite. My sister just told me a story about how the other night she went over to a neighbor's to borrow something, and the neighbor didn't have their porch light on so as she was walking up, she tripped on a step and full on whacked her head on the front door. She popped up really fast and started knocking, hoping the head-thump would just blend in. I couldn't speak a sentence for like 2 minutes, I was laughing so hard. I'm laughing right now, recounting it.

Jordan must have her mother's sense of humor, because we were both over visiting a friend (Meg, incidentally) the other night, and Jordan was horsing around on the couch and fell off the side all willy-nilly. She landed on carpet, and she falls all the time so I knew this one was ok, so like the good mother I am I started laughing at her. I'm sorry! She looks really funny when she tumbles. Arms and legs and huge belly flailing about. But she started giggling right along with me. I think Meg was a little shocked at my insensitivity.

5 - I didn't know UGGs weren't cool in 2013. I went to a concert with my sister Audrey last Friday night and everyone was wearing these types:

It was kind of a hipster crowd and I deffffinitely looked out of place. And my boots were radiating the year 2002. Amidst floral print short shorts with ripped tights underneath, medieval cloaks, high HIGH waisted jeans (right-under-the-boobs high), and Chloe Sevigny (no kidding, she was there. I told you it was a hipster crowd), I was a time warp. Everyone likes a time warp right? Anyway, I shall not relinquish my UGGs. These come with me to the grave. 

By the by, we saw Body/Head, and I didn't really get them. (I hadn't heard of them before, I was simply escorting Audrey.) They were...weird.

Thank you, thank you Grace, for the tag. I'm supposed to tag five others now, which will be tricky because I don't personally know (read: internetly know) too many other bloggers that I didn't just tag for something else (and I don't want to come off as clingy, you guys.) 

Here goes, I'm tagging: Dwija and Chalayn and Camille and Kelly and Jenny and only about two or three of those people have even heard of me so I am being the profound stalker right now in tagging people that don't e-know me.

But it was fun! Big thanks to Hallie and Grace. (I don't think Hallie knows me either...I seriously need to work on my creeper tendencies.)

Monday, March 4, 2013

external order

I was going to name this post "Spring Cleaning" but then I remembered when I named one of my posts "Maid Service" and I got all these spamsies about "we clean house for you." Do you think I've fooled the robots this time? I guess we'll see. (realllly just need to disable my anon comments but then I've lost hope forever of my mom figuring out how to comment..)

Ok. So. It's coming on sooner, much much sooner, than with my first pregnancy, but I am nesting and it's no joke. It's so not funny. I have been hating every square inch of this apartment; I have my eye on four large pieces of our furniture that I'm burning to revamp/refurbish; I want to throw this couch out and never lay eyes on it again; I've started a Goodwill box that about half of my clothes are currently in; the kitchen MUST must must must be clean at all times or I will have a flippin' meltdown I tell you. I'm hormonal - something I've never really experienced this heavily before (except perhaps directly post-partum. there are some stories there.) - and the only real option I have to alleviate the stress that is nesting is to make things clean. No Jess, put the primer down. You can't paint the walls. Stop hauling the sectional out section by section, we can't afford a new couch.

At my tiny tiny private high school, the whole school would gather for assembly every morning to do a daily dedication, followed my announcements and oftentimes a quick address from the headmaster. He used to say something, frequently enough that it would make me do a (mental) eye-roll, that resonates with me more now than it ever did ten years ago.

External order produces internal order.

At the time, I believe he was addressing the omnipresence of locker crap overflow into the halls and our slovenly desks that looked like they'd been ransacked. We were a small community; clutter made things claustrophobic. But now, as I look at the fruits of Sean's and my Saturday labors, I understand the second part of that phrase.

Walking into our apartment the last few weeks has been an immediate downer. It's been messy, cluttered, cramped, and nothing I want in terms of a home. My mood would turn nasty and I'd be a wench. There was no external order, (neatness, really), so I was not at peace with myself. After a quickish she-might-actually-be-manic-meltdown to Sean (who was not feeling well this weekend), I attacked the kitchen with a vengeance, then spent an hour and a half cleaning the bathroom, focusing my efforts on the shower/bathtub, which hadn't seen a real scrubbing in months.

Sean obviously sensed my crazy, and went out and rented a steam cleaner for our disgusting carpets.

All the earthly possession stacked not-precariously in the uncarpeted area

 All those white spots? That's where we sprayed carpet cleaner. THAT'S HOW MANY SPOTS THERE WERE. 

Helpful and Helpfuller or Vacuum Cords are Necklaces Too

Trendsetting with his cuffed jeans while Scaredy-Curious looks on

Dad's doing all the work - muahahah.

Cleaning is boring. I have a new playcubby. I'll be over here being unproductive.


There's endless upon eternal upon neverending things that I want and need and have to do with this place, but a little cleanliness goes a long long way right now, and I'm feeling a little more restful. I followed up our cleanfest with confession (all by my lonesome), and BAM. Internal order. As part of my penance (am I allowed to tell you this?? oh well...) the priest told me to do something fun just for me. He advised me, in heavily accented English, that if I let stress build (ok, I must have sounded stressed out? Because I did not confess stress as a sin.) then I will be like the balloon getting bigger and bigger and bigger until I pop. I smiled behind the screen at this analogy, because over the months that's probably just about exactly what I'll look like, but he's right. 

After I left, I got a M&M McFlurry (judge me.) and went to my favorite park, parked the car, turned off the radio, and ate ice cream. I probably looked the profound lurk as I did not exit my vehicle, but I felt like it'd be more awkward for me to sit on a park bench by myself, eating ice cream, than to creep on people from behind my windshield, eating ice cream.

This day could not have been any more gorgeous so what the frick was I complaining about. Clean apartment + clean soul + McFlurry = External Order + Internal Order + Tastebuds Tingling with the Delight of Rebellion = Happy Pregnant Camper = Not-Wench Wife = Not-Scared-for-His-Life Husband = Blissful Family Unit.

It's just math, people.