Wednesday, January 17, 2007

A charmed life

Thank you, thank you to all of you bloggers out there that left such wonderful congratulatory comments! I have read all of them and really appreciate them. : )

Life is so sweet right now. I know that I am still on Cloud 9 with this little guy. He is everything I could have ever hoped for and then some. I love this picture, he looks like he is celebrating a victory in his sleep.

DH works with a great guy down at the Port, and we have spent some time at their home for barbeques. They had a baby a couple of weeks ago also. The other day, he dropped off this arrangement of flowers for us. They are so gorgeous in person, I can't hardly believe that they came out of his yard. But, that is just another beauty of island living, the wonderful tropical flowers.
I haven't done any crafting, really. I did start reading a book that Jenn sent me, "Love, Rosie". I really like it so far, but it is just hard trying to find time to read. I hope to eventually be able to read while we nurse, but for now we are still in the learning phase so it requires all of my attention.

Continuing with my happy theme today, I got an email announcement that my guy, Barack Obama has decided to take the first step in running in 2008!!! YAY!!! That makes me incredibly happy. There is a video here. Or you can read the text here. He is just filing the papers to create a presidential exploratory committee, but it is the first step! WooHoo!!!

I have so much to catch up on, but it will have to wait for a while longer. I have a handsome little man that needs me. Hard to believe that he will be a week old tomorrow!


Saturday, January 13, 2007

It's a baby treehugger!!!

January 11 was our day! Our baby treehugger is here and we are beyond ecstatic.

We got to the hospital at about 6:30-ish (am) and checked in. The midwife checked me at 7:30 am and I was already dilated to 6 cm.

Nice picture of me in my complete ignorance of what was yet to come:

Labor was long (seemed like it to me anyway) and it was the most indescribable pain that I have ever felt, but at 5:47 pm, our baby treehugger was born.

Introducing Connor Paul...

He is a big baby, weighing in at 8 lb, 5 oz and 22 inches long. There was a bit of stress when he was born since his cord was wrapped around his neck twice and he was a bit blue. But, he is okay now, thanks to the quick action of the midwife and the nurse.

We actually got to come home the very next day. We got discharged that morning (about 15 hours after he was born) since we were both doing so well.
He looks so much like his Dad, it is amazing! He has already changed alot since we have been home.

I feel like I have been run over by a Mack truck though, so I am going to go relax and bond with our baby.

Thank you everyone for the comments and emails! They really made me smile wider today.


Thursday, January 11, 2007


Really might be the day! Hard to believe that a child of mine would show up on time (right, Staci?), but I have been up for the past couple of hours with contractions every 10 minutes.

I will update once something happens or we come home with a baby in our arms!

Off to take a shower. I can't believe I am up so early.


Tuesday, January 09, 2007

Naughty babies

We have to keep an eye on the cats during the day, otherwise they would sleep all day and wreak havoc on our house at night while we try to sleep. So, every couple of hours I go around and wake them up. Sometimes it is challenging trying to figure out the hiding spot of choice.

Take today...this is what I saw when I opened up the linen closet:
Those are legs in the middle of the picture...and I am really anal about my linens, they would never be this messy if they hadn't had some help.

The "I've been caught look":

This is where my cat is calling me a rat bastard in cat language, right before she gives me the evil eye and I give her the boot out of the closet:
Naughty babies!

Speaking of naughty babies...we are still pregnant. The due date is 2 days away and no signs of labor.

I can tell you that if I thought it would help, I would saw my legs off at the hip, they hurt so freaking badly. It is practically impossible to sleep for a period of longer than an hour at night. Last night I had to break out the heating pad and alternate it from my left hip to my groin muscle. Feels like I have a permanent pulled groin.

This is the crib tent that we bought. Whomever designed this thing has got to be a millionaire. It is to keep 2 legged babies in and 4 legged babies out. A necessary purchase in our house.

We went back to the same Midwife / Nurse Practitioner yesterday that we saw last time. She is great. I asked her what she thought it was since last time she said she had an idea, but I didn't ask. So, this time she said that she thought it is a boy, just like she thought last time. It's a 50/50 shot, so we will see. I am still secretly hoping for a girl though. The only reason being is because it is a serious PIA to get a baby boy circumcised here. You have to make a $200 "donation" to an indigent fund for medications, besides what they charge insurance, and there is only like one doctor that will do it and he isn't here all of the time. Sounds like BS to me. And, not to offend anyone, but our son will be circumcised. Hopefully I won't have to make a trip to Guam to the Navy Hospital to have it done.

We go back next week and since I will be overdue, they will do a non-stress test and also an ultrasound to check the fluid level. They will let me go 2 weeks past my due date before we do an induction. I don't want to be induced.

I crocheted a diaper cover the other day. It is made out of Bernat "Cotton Tots" yarn. Really cute. I had to learn how to do the front post double crochet and back post double crochet to do it. It gives it the "stretchy" ribbing at the waist band. DH asked me if I was making a hat with ears. Funny guy. Then, I started a small child sized scarf for the Project Baby Care Afghanistan box out of the remainder of the yarn. I was so excited, I figured out how to do a "center pull ball" with the yarn so that I didn't have a ball of yarn rolling all over. Of course, DH didn't see that as such a big achievement...he looked at it for a nanosecond and told me exactly how to do it. Thanks alot, you tell me! I am waiting for some wool yarn to come from Mom to make another cover and felt it.

I am just going to throw it out there and tell y'all how much I *love* CUC (our electric company). On Sunday, a truck hit a power pole and knocked out our electric. For ELEVEN HOURS!!! The paper said that it really only affected Kagman, but we don't live in Kagman. I suspect that it was the whole feeder along Isa Drive that was affected. Why don't they have a backup plan for these things? We looked like a couple of monkeys trying to get our *2* generators figured out. The first one never would start, then the second ones pull cord broke. DH got that repaired, and it started but we could never figure out how to get the power transferred from the generator to the house. I am sure that there is some switch that we just weren't seeing. So, we played Yahtzee for about 5 hours straight. Good times, good times.
Yum, homemade lemon bars (from scratch)!


Friday, January 05, 2007

Right on track

The first week of the year isn't over yet and I have already finished my first book, The Many Lives and Secret Sorrows of Josephine B by Sandra Gulland.

Very good book about Josephine Bonaparte and her life before and up until she met Napoleon. It is the first in a series of three. I have the third one, I am just waiting until I get another credit at so I can order the second one.

Tonight I am going to start Vanity Fair by Wiliam Makepeace Thackeray. A classic that I have yet to read. Then I want to see the movie with Reese Witherspoon in it.


You know times are bad when...

There is a guy standing outside of your fence making bird call noises and shooting into a tree.

When asked what he was doing, he said, "Shooting a bird".

When asked what kind of a bird, he said, "A black one".

When asked why, he said, "To eat" and laughed.

True story. Just happened outside of our front yard. I almost offered him a chicken breast out of the freezer...has more meat on it than a pigeon does.

I think that I might be a jerk because I didn't.


Thursday, January 04, 2007

Just because I love him so much

What Dave Matthews Band Song Are You?

You are #41. You are as complex as you are attractive. People want to know exactly what is going on in your mind. You would also relate to Two Step and Ants Marching.
Take this quiz!

Quizilla |

| Make A Quiz | More Quizzes | Grab Code

Suprisingly, I thought that I would get "Two Step". It is my favorite DMB song afterall.


Wednesday, January 03, 2007

I feel like a poser


This post is the "I love Saipan" post. But I don't *love* Saipan...I like it okay enough. Maybe it is because I didn't grow up here, I don't have familial ties here and I don't dive. And the fact that it is eleventy thousand miles away from home, and a plane ticket to Chicago is roughly $2,000.

But, read really isn't that bad. The things that I don't like are all pretty superficial and have the potential of being changed.

All of the pictures in today's post are pictures I took of things in our yard.

Isn't he cute? He is the guard outside of our gate.
The things that I do love about Saipan:
  1. The sun is almost always shining.
  2. The skies are so clear at night and the moon shines so brightly that you don't really need lights outside.
  3. Gorgeous flowers everywhere you look.
  4. The vast majority of the local people are super nice and friendly.
  5. I have a banana tree in my yard that actually has bananas on it!
  6. If you forget a birthday or important date back home, you have an extra day to make up for it (since we are 16 hours ahead of CST).
  7. The farmer's market on Saturday mornings.
  8. From any point on the island, you are never more than 10-15 minutes from the beach.
  9. The hospitality of the people here. When you go to a gathering, you had better hope that you have room in your refrigerator at home because they won't let you leave there without a bag full of foil covered plates full of food.
  10. Chicken Kelaguen and the homemade flat bread.
  11. Mango season...I almost make myself sick on them.
  12. Red rice.
  13. Slower lifestyle once you are out of the tourist district. Even there it is not so fast.
  14. The gorgeous view of the lagoon coming down Capitol Hill road on a clear day.
  15. The fact that the politicians seem to be regular people. The day we arrived, we got picked up at the airport and taken to lunch at Coffee Care. Guess who sat down at the table right next to us? None other than the Grand Poohbah himself, the Governor. I had no clue who he was until we left and were told.
  16. The beach that DH & I go to. On nice days, the water is crystal clear and so warm and calm that it feels like I am lazing about in a giant bathtub.
  17. No Wal-Mart. Yay!
  18. I rarely hear sirens. The crime rate here is pretty low.
  19. Only 2 fast food places here, Mc Donald's and Kentucky F*$#ing Pigeon. Well, 3 if you count Subway. Easier to resist temptation. : ) But I do miss Wendy's.
The things that I don't like about Saipan:
  1. A gallon of real milk is almost $10 so I have to drink the UHT boxed stuff from New Zealand.
  2. Expiration dates aren't routinely checked. DH made himself a drink the other day with a Diet Coke and complained that it was flat. Then looking at the ingredients, he said..."Hey, didn't they change over to Splenda?" Guess what the date on the bottom of the can was? 2004. And the pisser is that we can't remember where we bought the case from.
  3. Gas is crazy expensive (I think it is $3.13 right now for regular).
  4. Utility rates are absolutely insane. We pay something like 22 cents per kWh. Thank goodness that we conserve energy and use less than 250 kWh per month.
  5. You can't brush your teeth with the tap water. We use bottled and refill a Nalgene bottle every couple of days. Tap water here is non-potable.
  6. The boonie dog population is out of hand. I bet the tourists love seeing the dogs hanging around Garapan.
  7. Getting things shipped here is difficult. Everyone thinks it is a foreign country and tries to charge higher rates when they could just send it via USPS. We do have a US zip code.
  8. The government needs young, energetic, fresh ideas. Basically it needs a serious overhaul and to get out of the current mindset.
  9. The citizens need to be more open to changing their way of thinking as well instead of predicting "doom and gloom".
  10. People here seriously DO NOT KNOW HOW TO DRIVE. Rolling stop. check. The Saipan pull-out (which we were warned about before coming here). check. No turn signals. check. Stopping in front of a large puddle in the road so that you can wait for oncoming traffic to pass so you can go in the other lane to avoid the water. check.
  11. Fresh fruits (like berries, etc.) are crazy expensive. When you can find decent ones.
  12. The power outages. Thankfully we haven't had one in a week or so. The rolling blackout thing was a serious PIA and I hated it.
  13. The weather. Perpetual summer is rough on me at times. I am after all, a Midwestern girl. I need 4 distinct seasons.
  14. Betel nut chewing. It is almost impossible to understand someone that has a betel nut in their mouth. Let alone pay attention to anything other than their disgusting teeth from the betel nut chewing.
  15. Mold. It is the bane of my existence and keeps me busy.

This is a "sweet almond" tree that we got at an energy fair a couple of months ago.

This is a papaya tree in our yard...too bad neither of us like fresh papaya.

I know that there are more things that I really don't like, but I can't think of them. I do think that Saipan has alot of potential though. It will take much effort, but with the right people in place and a firm plan of action, anything is possible. I would like to come back to visit in 15 or 20 years and see how the island has changed.
We have only been on Saipan since the end of March 2006, so we are still learning things everyday. Currently we are set to move back to the States in June 2008.
If you want to know more about Saipan, I suggest you start here:
(click on button)
or here:

Just don't trust everything that you may read on a Google search.


Books I have read in 2006

For my future reference since it is now 2007 and time to start a new list:

Books I have read in 2006 (53)

Two for the Dough
Victoria Victorious
The Horse and His Boy (Narnia)
The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe (Narnia)
The Magician's Nephew (Narnia)
Skipping Christmas
The Christmas Box
Good Grief (audio book)
Husband-Coached Childbirth
The Bonesetter's Daughter
Girl's Poker Night
Bayou Farewell
Fried Green Tomatoes at the Whistle Stop Cafe
Wicked: The Life & Times of the Wicked Witch of the West
Jane Eyre (audiobook)
Ya-Ya's In Bloom
Divine Secrets of the Ya Ya Sisterhood
Little Altars Everywhere
Buster Midnight's Cafe
So That's What They're For
Rural Renaissance
The Quilter's Apprentice
Snow Falling on Cedars
P.S. I Love You
The Shunning
Angels & Demons
The Shop on Blossom Street
A Murderous Yarn
Unraveled Sleeve
A Stitch In Time
Framed In Lace
Crewel World
Lucy Sullivan is Getting Married
The Pilot's Wife
A Walk in the Woods
Suzanne's Diary for Nicholas
Harry Potter: The Order of the Phoenix
Dirty Girls Social Club
Dear America: Journey to a Land of Plenty
The Sweet Potato Queen's Book of Love
How to Make an American Quilt
Last Chance Saloon
Marley & Me
Hollywood Babylon
Belly Laughs
Baby Laughs
The DaVinci Code
Pushing 30
Girlfriends Guide To Pregnancy
Falling Leaves: Memoir of an Unwanted Chinese Daughter