July 2010


I now understand when people say that having a dog prepares you for parenthood.  I’m ready.  I am used to never having nice things (this is mostly the cats’ fault), the strain on the budget, waking up in the middle of the night, scheduling, and tuition (due to a miscommunication, Bunk attends a Montessori school in Chesterfield County).  Now that we have our birth plan down (silent birth in the woods behind a farmers’ market), we just need to get the dog ready.

Most new parents say that their dogs adjust beautifully, but Bunk treats everyone as if she’s me in 1989 and the world is Donnie Wahlberg.  She just gets so excited and I don’t trust that she won’t knock me over, trample the baby, and then eat three receiving blankets.  The best-case scenario is that we do right in training her.  First we’re working on “stay,” then a settle command, then “don’t eat three receiving blankets.”

Of course top priority is redecorating her room. I’m no Young House Love, but I’m pretty proud of our room makeover for her.

Before:

$439 later:

This is what the baby’s room looks like:

And finally, a teddy bear made from placenta (hit image for link):

We can get together and barf about it later.

I’m pregnant  — did Internet know that?  I’m also weird about our pending child having an online profile, but I fully anticipate that no matter what precautions I take the kid’s grandparents will excitedly post his/her social security number on Facebook along with bathtub pics (don’t ask me how they will get that info).  I thought I might give Lil’ Burgerphone a nickname to refer to when posting (Slider!  Jr. Associate!), but now I have a feeling that I won’t have time to bjournal, so it doesn’t matter anyway.

There are two things I like to read the most during pregnant times.  One is (of course) “What to Expect When You’re Expecting,” which is awesomely informative and so far has answered all questions.  The other is babycenter.com, which is also awesome and answers questions that I will never have, like “my mom keeps saying she’s going to take my newborn to live with her, what do I do?”  I like that I’m getting diaper recommendations from the same website that has juicy crazy family problems on it.

I’m due in November, and I spend 80% of my time thinking about baby clothes and the other 80% of my time thinking about how I can get my daily protein requirements. According to “WTEWYE” I just need to have three things from this list each day:

– 3 8 oz. glasses of milk

– 2 c. yogurt

-4 large whole eggs

-7 large egg whites

-1/2 c. ground flaxseed (half serving)

-4 slices whole grain bread (half serving)

-2 c. whole grain cereal (half serving)

What?  Who eats like that when not training for the Olympics? I guess our baby will be a weakling because I can only eat 6 egg whites and a glass of milk in one sitting.  It’s never been clear to me what a well-rounded pregnancy diet needs to look like, but the protein list scares me a little.

But then I see this and could eat a million eggs:

Dwell Studio for Target

We’re approaching a year with Bunk.  If anyone has never been a dog person and is contemplating giving in and letting your partner get a dog, please consult me and I can give you my pamphlet on dog care, “It’s Okay to want to choke your new pet, but you probably shouldn’t.”

I love our dog.  I wouldn’t say I’m a dog person yet, but I definitely am fond of her and am less likely to try and give her away like I am trying to do with our cats.  She is fun, and although she sometimes backtracks and forgets her manners, it’s neat that dogs can be taught to do things (like “back up” and “attack”).  So whatever scraps she gets into we can just work with her.

Bunk still amazes me, and not because she’s so smart.  We had a fancy six-foot privacy fence built to keep her in and she has recently jumped it.  She still gets upset and emotional when she sees squirrels on walks, which is getting tiresome after a year on constant work on that, but it probably doesn’t help that I pretend they’re killing me all the time.  The other thing is that she goes Marmaduke sometimes and eats slippers and shoes.  How cliche.  Of course, our cat Ely is constantly hogging giants pans of lasagna, so I guess some pet stereotypes are true.

Here’s to our first year together, Bunk.  I hope we have at least four more (that’s how long dogs live, right?).

One of my favorite holidays is the 4th of July.  Not only because it’s non-religious and doesn’t involve travel (for me), but because I love America and am inspired by the American Revolution and the risks that people take  to defend their beliefs and make any country a better place.  Hooray!  Also, three-day weekends (Labor Day is my other favorite holiday, because I like a government-approved day of leisure and am a September Baby).

Also:

The Kitchn is currently my favorite piece of Internet.  I basically spend my days reading through it and bookmarking recipes.  Last night I made pizza in a skillet (it’s what you do when you want to try grilled pizza but don’t want to grill).  I followed their technique but adapted the actual pizza recipe to what I would usually make.  Follow along, if you’d like:

1 cup AP flour

1 cup whole wheat flour

1/2 tsp yeast

1/2 tsp salt

Stir the yeast in 3/4 c. warm water, let it sit & dissolve.  Meanwhile, mix the flour and salt.  Pour in the yeast mixture and mix to form a ball (I used the food processor for this, but the dough wasn’t too tough for a mixing bowl and spoon).  This will make four pizzas.  Roll out on a floured surface.  For toppings I chopped up a tomato and some basil, and sautéed it with garlic in olive oil and topped with mozzarella.  It was loved by all.

And speaking of things that are loved by all, this is endlessly funny to me:

oh, p.s. — I had “winner winner, chicken dinner” on my mind because I went to Paradise Diner to try the fried chicken.  It wasn’t that great.  Wasn’t bad, but so far nothing beats Lee’s.

and pps — this happened, too.  The part about container/raised bed gardening was cut out but ask me and I can fill you in.