case of the shoulds

I had a bit of a bad one yesterday, although I'm trying to pull myself up and out. I'm fine I'm fine I'm fine, and then BAM! I get smacked in the face with something that just rips me open. An acquaintance from high school on facebook putting up belly pictures. Most pregnant women don't bother me, but I found out she was pregnant just a few days after we found out we'd lost our babe, when she announced it at 5-freakin-weeks. It just hit me when I was so raw then, and now I can't see her pictures without having my guts twisted. Not to mention that we should be 20 weeks now, half way there, and it hurts to know that instead of that, we are just getting to try again.
I just need to banish should from my vocabulary because it is a shitty, painful word.

I guess this is what they mean when they say that grief is cyclical... I really was fine, and today I'm getting back towards fine again... but yesterday, yesterday I was NOT fine. Not at all.

But for today, no more shoulds... only the nows and the what will bes.

Ps. I'm so greatful for hilarious friends that crack me up and make me smile. If you are friends with me on facebook, check out the convo in my status yesterday (the early, angry one) to see what I mean. How could I be upset after that. They are great, they are funny, and I love them.


all the other stuff

So I did pictures, and recipes from the weekend... now lets get to all the other stuff.

Friday night Trav and I had a big fight. A blow out. An "I had to go comfort the dog because she was upset that her people were yelling and upset" fight. I did go down to her at midnight, take her outside, rub her belly & scratch ears, tell her everything was okay, then tuck her back into her crate before heading up to bed myself. We all slept, though maybe not well, and Saturday morning Trav & I talked it all out... each walking away with things to work on. Saturday night we all slept a lot better. We are fine now, more then fine... as he put it, "we are happy and in love." Well said my dear.

Monday afternoon I had a dentist appointment. Man do I hate going to the dentist! I've only had one cavity in my life, and its never a bad experience really... I just have this fear of the place that I can't shake. It was never like that with the dentist I went to as a kid, I loved them and wish I could still go there. The people I go to now, while good (and close to work) are a lot rougher, and I always walk away from my appointment with a mouth that feels clean but also worked over. Monday was no different (although better then past experiences)... and at one point she slipped and jabbed my gum with the scrapy thing. Ouch!

Luckily after that I had a really nice experience to make me forget about my mouth. I headed down to the Maccabeam for some Shawarma for my boss and I. It was hot as hell, so I was already sweating when I got there... but I ordered and went to pay, when I realized their credit card machine was down and I only had $10 on hand. One of the guys noticed me looking unsure and asked what was wrong, when I explained he walked outside to talk to the owner (who was sitting at a table on the sidewalk). A slew of Hebrew followed and when all was said and done the owner walked in and told the cashier not to take my money, and told me that I could just pay the next time I came! They definitely will have a repeat customer in me!
(I did go back yesterday to give them their money. Sweet guys.)

I think I also worked that lunch off before even eating it as I sweated my way back to my office... damn was it hot! Luckily the A/C we hooked up for Daisy seems to be doing the trick, although I'm sure she's thrilled that today is only supposed to be in the high 50s (uh, what the hell Mother Nature?!). Back into the 70 later this week (perrrfect...), but we're not expected to see sun until next week. Its raining now... and my only hope is that I get at least one thunderstorm out of this! Doesn't seem like too much to ask!

That's about all I got... I've caught you up to today, since the rest of my time has been spent working, playing with the pup, doing house stuff, or reading (I'm working on A Thousand Splendid Suns right now... very good). So, to end... GG, from Sunday. Sorry if you're tired of seeing cute babies. ;-)


Weekend, Part 2:

I made two breads Sunday morning... with varying success.

The first is Jalapeno Cheddar Cornbread.

This one is super easy.

*1 package Corn bread/muffin mix plus whatever it calls for (normally egg and milk).
* 1 jalapeno, finely chopped
* sharp cheddar, finely chopped, as much as your little heart desires... I used a pile the same size as my pile of chopped jalapeno, plus another pile a little smaller for on top

  1. Mix together corn bread mix with whatever is called for on the box.

  2. Fold in jalapeno and most of cheddar.

  3. Bake 5 minutes less then directions call for, pull out and sprinkle top with rest of cheddar.

  4. Pop back into oven for the last 5 minutes.

This one was a success. Nice jalapeno flavor throughout, but not really spicy. Good cheese flavor too.

This second is Bara Brith:

"A traditional rich cake that is the centrepiece of many a Welsh tea table."

* 1lb(450g) mixed dried fruit (approx 2 cups)
* pint tea
* 2 tbsp marmalade
* 1 egg, beaten
* 6 tbsp soft brown sugar
* 1 tsp mixed spice (I used cinnamon, nutmeg, and ground ginger)
* 1lb (450g) self raising flour (2 cups)
* honey to glaze

1. Soak the fruit overnight in the tea.

2. Next day, mix in the marmalade, egg, sugar, spice and flour. Spoon mixture into a greased loaf tin and bake in a warm oven @ 325°F for 1 hour or until the centre is cooked through. Check from time to time to see that the top does not brown too much, and cover with a sheet of foil or move down a shelf in the oven if necessary.

3. Once cooked, leave the Bara Brith to stand for 5 minutes then turn out of the tin on to a cooling tray. Using a pastry brush, glaze the top with honey.

4. Served sliced with salted butter and some tasty farmhouse cheddar.

This one was slightly less successful, though I do want to try it toasted with some butter and cheddar before I really pass judgment. It's not bad, its just really sweet, and so much fruit. If there was a little more bread to it... I think it would be better. But maybe with the cheddar and butter to offset the sweet, it will be more to our liking. I'll let you know. ;-)


Weekend, Part 1:

Warm weather + Ball with Trav = Happy Puppy

Although she is definitely a winter dog, as she spent most of the weekend laying in the kitchen or basement, both of which have floors that stay cool (lanolium and concrete, respectively). We actually put the one A/C in downstairs last night, since its supposed to get up to 92* today and we don't want the poor thing to be overheated.

(More tomorrow when I download the pictures from my camera...)


friday kittie chittie chat*

Today is long. Maybe its the beautiful weather and the loads of sunlight streaming in my window, but I just can't wait for this day to end and my weekend to start! I even took a break this afternoon to try and use up the last of my Christmas gift cards to Macy's and New York & Co. (success at Macy's, got Trav a belt... nothing at NY&C... tank top off the clearance rack at Old Navy though). Got a nice walk in the process since the shops are a number of blocks away. Still the day is dragging.

(Random GG picture, just because it makes me smile. I adore that baby!)

Its 4:30 and I have no short work projects to start, and don't want to stop in the middle of something to leave it for the weekend. I could just leave, but I would feel guilty. So I'm just kind of sitting here, twiddling my thumbs.

Did find some great things from icanhazcheeseburger:

That one cracks me up since we just watched the remake of Day of the Dead Wednesday night. We enjoyed it, but I wouldn't say it was the best zombie flick.

Okay, I've killed some time... I can leave 10 minutes early. Sorry for the ramblings. Have a great weekend!

*TM Ms.Bluemont ;-)



I had all sorts of things I wanted to blog about... where did they all go? I really need to be able to blog from the shower or the toilet, because that's where I always end up thinking of things, only to forget them again before I get to a computer.

I snapped this picture Tuesday evening on my walk to the train. This is what I love about Philly (pardon the crappy cell phone quality):

So pretty, right?
It's the new Comcast building, all glass and sky.

Oh... and look at the top left-ish... I caught a rainbow and didn't even realize it!

Ahh, I remember some of the things now... prepare for some rambling.
I'm pretty much done with my period now. Which is awesome. But that means I'm done (for the most part) blogging about any cycle/pregnancy related stuff because even though I would talk about it on here if we had another miscarriage, and of course any pregnancies will eventually be reported here too... well we just don't want the pressure, I guess. We don't necessarily want everyone to know if we get pregnant in case it doesn't end well, again. Even though people would probably find out about it then. Not to mention that I'm sure I'm just going to be scared about it a lot and I don't know if I want that all out there. Does that make sense? If not, that's okay... because half the time it doesn't make sense to me either, and I would sometimes rather just keep letting it all out here. But I think Trav would prefer the former, so that's what I'll do. Plus I think we won't be telling basically anyone "in real life" if we get pregnant again, so we wouldn't want some people to find out here while others don't know. That makes more sense.

Also good about my period wrapping up is that I have finally seen some progress with my skin! Don't know if its the end of the hormonal period time, or the Head&Shoulders, or the better eating I've been doing... but my skin has finally started to look a little better! Finally! It's not great, but its at least somewhat better.

Last night Trav and I took the pup for a walk, and I planted my freesia bulbs which came in yesterday. Oops, thats what was going to happen before I walked to the far train station under ominous skies and the rain started as we finished dinner. We did take Daisy for a (wet) walk, but it was short and the hurried trip home was accompanied by rolls of thunder. Hopefully the planting can be done tonight, and maybe a longer walk that doesn't involve the fear of being struck by lightning.
Most of the flowers will go in the front bed (beyond the reach of puppy teeth!), but I'll put a few in the back... just to see if she'll pay them any attention. I can't wait for them to come up! Freesias are so beautiful and smell amazing. I'll post pictures when they do bloom.

Speaking of the crazy dog, I think we scheduled her spaying just in time since last night she tried to hump her pillow into submission. It was the first time she had done anything like that and she didn't do it again for the rest of the night or this morning, so hopefully it won't become a habit in the next few weeks.

And just to end on an adorable note... some random GG:

(That's me feeding her.)

That's all for now. My random thoughts. I have work to do, and walks to take (Jan agreed to go out with me today). So off I go.


she doesn't know what's coming! (and Happy Earth Day!)

I called yesterday, and made an appointment for Daisy to go in to get spayed and microchipped. The poor dear doesn't know what's coming... but since she'll be six months old on the 6th of May, its time for it to happen. We'll drop her off on the morning of the 15th, and pick her up the afternoon of the 16th. I'm already feeling badly about it!

Following that line of thought, I think Daisy is giving me a sneak peak at the dreaded "mommy guilt". Oh Lord, I just love that damn dog so much... and I wish I could do more for her/with her, all the time! When I stop playing with her so we can eat dinner, I feel guilty. When we go out without her, I feel guilty. Etc, etc! I just have to keep reminding myself that we are doing the best we can for her, and that she is a healthy, happy dog.


Happy Earth Day, y'all!

You didn't think I forgot, did you?
Honestly, being green... and specifically, trying to be greener... has been on my mind a lot lately! I mentioned buying the Bri.ta for work. I also have a cup, spoon, and bowl that I brought from home so I can use those instead of disposables. Monday I called the main office for the company that owns our building to find out about recycling... turns out, we're already doing all we have to, which is great!

But I want to do more! A lot more. I don't feel like I'm doing enough and it bothers me since this is one of my most consuming beliefs/causes.

I've written before about what we already do at home to be green (plus we're recycling again!), and I'm asking for your help. What do you do to conserve? What are you doing to celebrate Earth Day? I'd love your suggestions! And if you want some of your own, here is a neat article about the most important green choices you can make (obviously we all can't do it all, but it would be great if we could all do some of their optional choices too).

As for today, I'm wearing my greens and browns... plus my Teva shoes... and I'll be heading out for a walk at some point, even though its a little dreary out. And I will definitely take a moment to marvel at the beauty of nature.

And remember people:



just burned my thumb on some dry ice. holy hell did that hurt.
that sh!t is dangerous.


get your ass outside for earth week!

This morning the wind was blowing so hard and steadily that the falling white blooms from the tree in the train station parking lot made it look like it was snowing. It was actually really pretty, although I very much appreciated the fact that there was no frozen water involved.
There is however, lots of water coming from the sky today... and for the rest of the week from what the weather channel is telling me. And it is chilly today, especially compared to how beautiful it was this weekend. And boy was it beautiful!

Trav's experiment of seeing if the dog will have a nap with him on the weekends post-first potty trip is still going pretty well. (He wakes at 5 something to let her out in the morning, same as work days... but would love to get more sleep without having to stick her back in her crate. So he has been taking her into the guest bedroom and they sleep together there until I come find them.) I normally wake up around 8, then head into the guest bedroom to see my two loves.
Daisy loves that part... oh, she found us! She'll get up then and wander around the room sniffing, and has started hiding under the bed.

Pretty soon there is no way she'll be able to get under there... or maybe it will just be a lot harder for her to get out!

Ro and I met at 1 to walk around the state park. It was a gorgeous day! In the 70s, and sunny... I wore shorts and a t-shirt for the first time this year. The nice weather also meant that GG got to come with us... her first time spent outdoors (minus going to and from the car/daycare/doctors), and her first time in the stroller.

She did great! Only fussing twice the whole five miles, and both times were because she wanted to eat. She slept a bunch too. AND she also had her first ride on the swings:

She actually loved that! The breeze on her face must have felt nice.
The whole walk just reminded my how much I love being outside... how much I love nature... and how glad I am that warm weather is coming!!
While I was gone Trav did some work in the yard... filling holes that Daisy had dug by the fence and lining the back fence with wooden beams too keep her from digging new ones. It actually looks really nice.

That night Ro & Pat, Trav & I, headed to Jeremy & Kerry's place. Kerry's friend Alex was there too with her daughter, Audrey.

Audrey was so in love with GG... just enthralled with her.

We had such a great time, we decided we want to try and do it once a month.

Saturday night we had quite the surprise, waking up to a dog in our bedroom at 3 in the morning! Trav stayed up later then I did, and swears he shut her tightly in her crate... but of course you start to question yourself. It was the weirdest thing, and probably just a fluke... but last night I had constant dreams about Daisy repeatedly escaping from her crate. It made for a less then restful evening.

Sunday was so much lazier... movies, BBQing at home, and lots of relaxing. We weren't completely lazy though. Trav cleaned up some in the kitchen, and I cleaned Henry's cage (our hermit crab), decluttered the top of my dresser, and went through my collection of purses/bags and my closet to pull out a garbage bags worth to give to Good.will. I also re-hung all of my stuff that was supposed to be in my closet. Trav had taken it all down when he hung the shelf in there for me (months ago)... and I had only gotten around to putting about half of it back! The rest was just in a laundry basket on the floor by the closet. No good. Now its all back in place and I can find my stuff again!

Now its back to work... which I really really didn't want to get up for this morning. This weekend just seemed to fly by way too quickly! But I have plenty to do, so hopefully the week will pass by quickly as well.


Have you ever done something, for vanity reasons, that you're a little embarrassed to admit to?
I've started washing my skin with Head&Shoulders Intensive Treatment shampoo. Someone told me that it cleared their crazy acne right up, and heavens, if that wasn't all it took before I ran out, bought a bottle, and smeared it all over myself. Its only been three days... so no change yet, but believe me... I'll be going on about it if it does work. I'll give it two weeks. Two because this first week might be a wash, considering I ... just ... got ... my ... period! Woot. Sorry for all the info, but that means our "loss cycle" is finally over and we can start trying again! I've never been this happy to get my damn period!

Today I'm wearing this:
The "Normal's Overrated" shirts that I got for Trav & I for Easter. Do any of you watch House? Trav and I love it, and this is from it. Recently a main cast member on House committed suicide (on the show! in real life he's going to work for the white house)... which the show is using to help raise awareness about suicide. They teamed up with NBC to create shirts with the House-ism "Normal’s Overrated", proceeds of which will go to NAMI. You can get your own here.

Just thought I would let you all know. Pretty cool, I think.

I have to run... I have mucho work to do, and definitely want to get out and take a walk this afternoon, so I need to get it done now. But I am going to leave you with the new Harry Potter trailer! Looks damn good and I can't wait!



anderson cooper...

... how do I love thee?

This killed me.

On a more personal note, the eating well stuff is going great for both Jan & I. Salads, fruit, veggies, lean proteins... I'm enjoying it all. I got the Bri.ta too, its in the fridge full of water and a few slices of orange and lemon to yum it up. She bought herself some new sneakers too, to promote walking. :-)
I'm going to do some of that myself today. Its sunny and warm, and I'm certainly going to take advantage of that after the past few rainy days. Walking with Ro this weekend too... its supposed to be 70something on Saturday!

For now, back to work!


not a barrel of laughs

So yesterday I got the news that Jan, my "work mommy", has cancer. A mass on her kidney, which they luckily caught very early.

Sorry, this place is just a barrel of laughs lately, huh?

She is scheduled for surgury to remove the mass in May, on her birthday actually (suck). Thankfully her prognosis is great, really great... and the doctor is optimistic about her not needing chemo or radiation post surgery. But considering this is the same lady who's father passed a year ago this past february, after a two year battle with cancer... and who's husband lost his first wife to cancer... well, its scary to say the least.

BUT! Jan is doing her best to turn this into a positive kick in the rear.
She has some weight that she's been half-heartedly trying to lose for a while, but now she has real motivation! I told her that it is my goal for her to emerge on the other side of that surgery not only cancer-free, but healthier then she's been in years. She's going on Jenny Craig and I'm going to start taking her on walks around the block during lunch. I also cleaned out my snack drawer of unhealthy things (bu-bye cheese curls, oreos, and combos!) and filled it with fruits, nuts, and wholegrain snacks (organic when possible!). The fridge has more fruit, veggies, and good cheeses. This is right along with what I've been wanting/trying to do anyway. Healthier, greener eating. I figure I can help Jan by not putting the bad stuff in front of her, and instead eating healthier too.

She's already making better choices too... little things like using milk instead of cream in her coffee. And not eating cheese curls anymore. ;-)

I think I'm also going to pick up a Bri.ta for the fridge, so we can all start drinking some more water. Not only is water great for you, and increased water consumption good for losing weight, but using a Bri.ta to do so is good for the environment. In that vein I signed up for:

Filter For Good: Pledge to reduce bottled water waste.

(Do it! You can get a coupon for $5 off a Brita, or $1 off filters.)

I'll be sure to update with her/our progress... wish Jan lots of luck!

Ps. Got another medical bill last night... from the doc that performed the D&E. $93. The D&E bill came last week, $661. If you're keeping track, that's over $800 so far that we've paid for our first ill-fated pregnancy.


easter weekend

I was so looking forward to this weekend after quite the long week.

We went to Ro & Pat's on Saturday, late afternoon, to join them and Pat's parents, sister, future brother-in-law for dinner. It was g-o-o-o-o-d. Honey baked ham, sweet potatoes with marshmallows, mashed potatoes, green beans with almonds, and a sweet sauce for the ham. I love holiday food.
GG was festive for her very first Easter in her bunny onsie and sweet yellow sunhat:

Sunday was sunny, but cool.
Daisy found another place to rest herself:

And I went walking with Ro at the state park... something we haven't done in months!

It was really nice, and felt damn good to get those muscles working again. She was going to bring GG, but the poor girl was worn out from all her visitors, and it was a little too chilly with the wind. Next time.

The rest of Sunday was lazy...

Which was exactly what I wanted and needed.
We did make our own ham for dinner... with plenty of leftovers! We'll be having ham in everything this week.

And just for fun, I played around with the picture from friday on the "LolBuilder" to make this:

funny pictures

After a great weekend, it is now back to work in a big way. Super overdue letters I have to type, bios I have to finish to be put into packets tomorrow, intern applications to sort through, and tons of emails I need to update. Bah.


friday night cute:

Wednesday night photoshoot:

It was so nice out today that we put Daisy in the yard for a bit while we ate dinner and Trav vacuumed. I went upstairs to use the bathroom, peeked out the window and caught her like this:

She was just sitting like that! For about five minutes I watched her before I thought, duh, I should run for my camera!



I've been thinking about religion a lot lately... yup, religion and shoes, I'm a well rounded woman. Trav and I had talked some when I was pregnant about finding a church to attend (right now he wants a Catholic church). He wants our kids to be baptized/christened and obviously you have to attend a church for that to happen. I also would love for our kids to have that and be raised in a tradition of faith. When we lost the babe, that discussion was dropped for the time being.

But, this article: The End of Christian America, put it back on my mind. Meacham talks about how the percentage of American's who don't identify with a religion is growing, but how that's not necessarily a bad thing. I agree with him completely, and feel that as long as you have a full life and find other outlets, you don't have to identify with a religion. You can be spiritual in your own way without identifying with a religion... which is how I've been for a long time. BUT for me, well, I really WANT to identify with a religion now.

I took this quiz a while ago, the "Belief'O'Matic", which helps you identify which religion your beliefs most align with. I think my top three might have switched around a bit, but they're still the same: Liberal Quaker (100% match!), Reformed Judaism (96% match), Unitarian Universalism, and Neo-Pagan.

As you've probably figured out, I believe strongly in equal rights for all... including same sex marriages (speaking of which: Go Iowa!! Go Vermont!! Go DC!!). It's important to me that whatever religion I choose to follow not condemn that belief. I am also pro-choice, a big believer in environmental activism and being good to the earth, and want a religion that doesn't condemn those who don't believe the exact same thing. All of these are a good match for those wants.

Trav's matches were rather eclectic... with the top two being Orthodox Judaism and Hinduism. Catholic was #5, I was kind of hoping it wouldn't show up, so I could try to talk him out of a Catholic church being our church of choice. ;-) Ah well.

I wrote before about going to a UU church... which was fine, but didn't feel like the place for me. I should go back again, give it one more shot. And last night I did some online searching... there are two Quaker meeting houses very near our place. I'm not sure about that either, since they aren't church services as one normally finds... but I definitely would like to try it out. I'm sure there are synagogues around too, I just have to look. It's just so hard to find the right place, especially for the first time. Once I find that religion that speaks to me, if we move, I'll just go to the closest house of worship for that religion. Right now though, I feel like I'm starting from scratch.

Oh well, I don't really have anywhere to go with this now. There's no resolution for the moment, so I guess I'll just end this. But I'd love to hear what you think. Or if you have any suggestions from your own life and how you found the place that felt like spiritual home! Thanks!

PS. Please pray for a friend of mine who is going through a rough time right now... she feels very lost and heartbroken, and she could use lots of positive thoughts. Thanks!


this is my life

I've been thinking about shoes lately. Not just any shoes, but my lovely perfect green ones which I wear all. the. time. My lovely perfect green shoes which Daisy decided to eat the insoles out of. Grr.
Luckily the shoes themselves are just fine... but I was a bit pissed anyway. Can't really wear shoes without the insoles! And do you know how many types of insoles there are? There are some that are too short, some that are too thick and would make the shoes too tight, some that are too thin and not offer enough support, some that are made for heels which obviously wouldn't work, and some that are made for athletic shoes which also wouldn't work. I spent 15 damn minutes in the insole section of Rite.Aid the other day just trying to find one freakin pair that would work. You know what I did with that pair? That $8 pair? Returned them the next day because I knew the moment I got home and took them out of the package that they wouldn't work.
What did work? The $1.19 Rite.Aid special... no frills, no nothing but a thin layer of cushy foam cut in the shape of a shoe. Ahh, yay for having my shoes back.

On a side note, I wonder how all my favorite bloggers find funny stuff to write about all the time when this is the crap that happens in my life.


springy things

Wow, I know that I was all "yay its spring" before, and was even looking all over for the springy things... but spring suddenly hit me right in the face this past weekend! In a good way! It started friday with the sun showers (I still got my walk in!), then saturday with the warm weather which continued into sunday. I had been looking for spring growth, and suddenly I noticed it everywhere! Buds on bushes, little flowers pushing their lovely heads out of the brown and green earth, trees in blooms of white, pink, and red. I love it.

Daisy loved the hell out of it too:

She would spend all day and night outside if we would let her - just running around, chewing sticks, laying in the grass. She was a happy pup this weekend, sunning herself until her coat was warm to the touch.

And the flowers aren't the only things growing... I got to see, hold, feed, eat up GG this weekend and I can't believe how big she is getting.

The little bean is 2 months, and she's already in her 3-6 month clothes.

She's such a happy, smily girl now. And when you lay her in her bassinet downstairs, she just loves to talk to the bears! She coos and smiles... honestly she adores them and it is the sweetest thing. She's in such a great stage, where the smiles are finally real.

This weekend was a nice one. Besides spending time with Ro & GG (while the boys enjoyed their night doing boy things... lol), Trav, Daisy, & I drove up to the Lehigh Valley on Saturday. Trav & Daisy went to Lehigh for a fraternity thing, and I headed to my parents and a hair appointment. We were both pleasantly surprised at how well she did! She whined a little when we first started off, but I moved into the back seat with her... which helped. By the end of the ride she was laying out on the seat, chewing her toys and enjoying sticking her nose out the window. On the way back she even napped! A good thing too, since we want to take her with us to Cape Cod this summer.

Meanwhile, my face has taken a nosedive into the ridiculously broken out... hormones?

Okay, back to my monday night. Ta-ta.

(Happy Birthday to Daisy... 5 months old today!!)