Monday, December 21, 2009

Wishing you a Hydrated Holiday!

Happy Yule, everyone... and a belated Happy Hanukkah and an early Merry Christmas (I love that we are all such a beautiful collage of dynamic souls).

So - its officially, officially winter here in Utah and I learn something new every single day.

Hunter says that one of the side effects of this little adventure we've embarked upon is my tendency to fixate... I was prone to fixating before, but I'm pretty sure we're at a new level. To be honest, I don't think that its so much a side effect of being pregnant as it is the hormones have aligned and brought out what is a dormant and inevitable Glasgow trait. My fixations range from the weather, to food network (my DVR is 98% full because 'OH MY GOD PAULA DEAN IS COOKING MACARONI AND CHEESE IN A CROCK POT, I SHOULD DO THAT ONE DAY!'), to that rather bizarre waitresses we had last night.

I will admit (getting back to the winter in Utah thing) I have been checking and announcing the temperature, wind chill, and how it compares to the temperature in the North Pole every 15 minutes like clockwork for about 3 weeks now (I mean, there's a link on the blackberry weather channel application to see the weather at the North Pole every time you check the temperature.... how can you pass that up??). But seriously - there was an entire week there where it practically didn't make it to 20 degrees. If you're factoring in the wind chill, which I mean, who doesn't - we're talking consistently -12, night after night. All I can say about -12 degrees is, man... that's cold.... who wouldn't fixate???

One such evening, Hunter and I decided we'd head out for a little Salt Lake City winter adventure. I grew up listening to the Mormon Tabernacle Choir Christmas tapes incessantly. My mother was just in love with the Mo-Tab Christmas music (I can say Mo-Tab now because I'm a local, and yes, it makes me feel super cool). We have met some dear and wonderful friends here, who offered to try and help us get in to see the choir's Christmas concert. The concert was sold out, but our friend knew of a possibility to get will-call tickets and offered to meet us out there and give it a shot. The same wonderful city who beautifully coordinated and executed a tremendously successful winter Olympics thought it would be a great idea to schedule the Mo-Tab Christmas Concert and a Utah Jazz (professional basketball) game across the street from each other at the same time on the same night. We live exactly 4 miles/8 straight blocks from Temple Square, where the concert was being held. It took us over an hour to drive those 4 miles.... the concert was starting. As for our friends, she was standing outside waiting for us with two cups hot apple cider and he was looking for a parking space. About 45 minutes later we found a parking garage about 2 miles from the temple and started walking. I checked the temperature... -9. At the North Pole it was only -5. Eat your heart out Santa. About a mile and half into our trek to the concert our friend called. The tickets were sold out. He was still looking for a parking space. My cider was cold. We turned around and went to Wendy's instead. I guess I'll have to ask mom if I can borrow her tape... but next year - we have a game plan.... oh yes... there is a game plan.

The other fun fact that I am quickly learning about Salt Lake City - is that it is next to impossible to keep any sort of vegetation alive unless you are 110% committed. This means, ladies and gentlemen, that our Christmas tree is seriously dead. I mean dead. You see (and its taken me 6 months to resign myself to this fact) if you are trying to keep any sort of plant (or animal for that matter) alive you must water it every single blessed day out here. None of this 'every other week, okay fine - twice a week, omg, really... every other day???' business. No. Every. Day. Well, guess which delightfully round, disjointed pelvis, pregnant southern transplant did not get down on the floor and crawl around under the tree to water it every day. The good news is, at night, when its lit up, you can't even tell its dead... unless of course, it goes up in flames... then I suppose it will be rather obvious. So far, I've killed everything in our yard, a beautiful orchid and an unkillable house plant. I know its unkillable, because I had one in NC that I left in my car in July in 120 degreess and when I pulled it out it was a shriveled black skeleton... three separate times.... and it still lived. Same plant, here in Utah... Dead. (yes, I am having a child... what?) So I am ready to resign myself to this arid climate and my new year's resolution will be to keep my plants, my pets and my family hydrated every day, for better or worse, cross my heart....

I hope you're all warm and relaxed and looking forward to a long weekend filled with love and laughter. Know that we are missing you and thinking of you every single day and that you are in our hearts and thoughts throughout the holidays and beyond.

So very much love,


Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Just a quick little catch up/re-start

I know, I know, it’s been a little while. I’m not sure when things got so crazy because there have been so many entertaining feats that we have endured since the last time I checked in. For example, I had a whole blog written in my head about my quest for a swine flu vaccine. It was my first experience with Utah snow as a southern transplant, it was a week and a half before Halloween (really – I mean, who would have thought). Just imagine; hundreds of people, huddled in the decaffeinated darkness of pre-dawn, behind a convention center in some town about 45 minutes north of Salt Lake City. It was like some clandestine pregnancy expo – in a snow globe…. very bizarre. I learned several things on what I am considering my first true winter adventure:

1. Purchase gloves at the dollar store in bulk and put them in every pocket and everything that resembles a pocket that you own. Do this both for yourself and so you can pass on a bit of warmth and kindness should you see some poor southerner trying to find ways to warm her hands in ways that are so creative and desperate that they’re beginning to flirt with obscene. (yep – that’s me, accidentally obscene, gloveless, southern pregnant lady in northern Utah – just appreciate that visual for a minute)

2. There is truly no value that can be placed on good socks. Good socks are just beyond critical. Do not under, under any circumstances, if there is even the potential of cold rain, leave the house in the same socks that you wear jogging in July. The word is ‘WOOL’. In fact, I even recommend putting back up socks in the pocket that doesn’t have the gloves in it.

3. You really will do any self-sacrificing thing for the safety of your child. It is incomprehensible

4. Just because you lost feeling in your toes several hours ago, doesn’t necessarily mean that they are going to fall off (you just cannot even imagine my relief).

5. Stumbling upon a Krispy Kreme after any trying experience makes absolutely everything okay. (I wonder if I can arrange for krispy kreme immediately following labor… hmm….)

Let’s see… what else has been going on….

We accepted and embraced the realization at 10 weeks that our child was going to be a bit of a handful. The way it was straight up slam dancing on that first ultrasound had us buckling our seatbelts. At 18 weeks we awoke to snow in Sundance and one heck of a kick in the abdomen. I had heard that your first baby kicks feel like these wonderful little flutters. My first baby kick made me wish these things came with safety pads. All of these little indicators pointed towards a full steam ahead, into everything, hit the ground running, little boy (kind of like how my mother-in-law has wearily described life with little DHB). I should have known better. She is, without a doubt, a she. A daughter, who is already a little bit stubborn, is basking upside down in decades of residual caffeine and is seemingly having an absolute blast.

I know that’s not much of an update, but I’ll be honest, I’m writing this, un-medicated, with the worst cold I have had in years, and I’m more than a little foggy…. So that’s just going to have to bring us up to present day. We have our Christmas tree up (and we’re still happily married, I should add, even though DHB briefly lost consciousness while getting it in the stand ) and its beautiful (especially if you turn your head oh so slightly to the right when admiring it). The outside of the house isn’t finished yet (or technically started for that matter), so you’re going to have to hang tight for pictures, but I will try to put some up. DHB turned 30 on Sunday and we celebrated with a damn fine chocolate cheese cake and our first significant snow. We now realize that we probably should have celebrated with the purchase of a snow shovel and maybe some salt. You live, you learn! We’re staying here for Christmas this year, our first Christmas ever without our extended families. There will be pajamas and lots of baking and eggnog with visions of bourbon rather than sugar plums… at least that’s my wild and crazy plan

Alright, this at least gets me a reacquainted with the keyboard. I promise you, I will do my best to keep these updates a little more frequent. In the meantime, feel free to reach out and say hello in between updates!

Hope you are finding little pieces of magic all over the place this holiday season; they’re there, just keep your eyes open.