Friday, September 12, 2008

I'm Postive, It's Positive

I've been meaning to write this for the last few days, but I wanted to make sure that I was ready.

On Tuesday morning, I woke up when Josh got up and took a pregnancy test. When I came downstairs at 6:30 in the morning on one of my days off, he asked the obvious question: "What are you doing up so early?" In retrospect, he should've asked the really obvious question: "Are you pregnant?" Why else would I be wide awake so early on a Tuesday morning?

I responded: "I took a pregnancy test. I'm pregnant." Despite fleeting thoughts of doing something cute and charming to give him the news, I just blurted it out unceremoniously. I'm a terrible secret keeper. I got to see more of his half-chewed breakfast than usual that morning.

His response--"Oh"--was followed by a long silence and the sound of me preparing my morning bagel. Much to his credit, he asked, "Should we talk about this?" Of course we should, but after I said yes that we should talk about it, there was more silence. "What would you like to say?" I asked. In those first few moments, there wasn't a whole lot to say. We did go to coffee that morning and talk about it some, and we've continued to talk about it as the days go by, and while Josh was nervous and anxious and excited and afraid that he wouldn't live up to expectations the first day, I think he's getting more excited by the day. And here we are only 5-6 weeks in.

I called Kaiser later that day in a daze. The appointment is still 4 weeks out, which seems like an unnaturally long time. But, then, I'm really barely pregnant. And I don't feel pregnant. But all I can think about is being pregnant. I think that might mean that I'm excited, but I'm certainly nervous as well. I'm scared that I can't be the mother and partner I want to be; I'm scared I'm still too much that 20 year old who was unprepared to be a mom; I'm scared of losing me and Josh and Aspen...

Telling Aspen scares me and telling my parent makes me nearly as nervous. It's weird starting a family that is, in some ways, outside of MY family--I almost feel like I'm betraying us. But, despite weirdness and nervousness and anxiety, it also feels right. I never thought I'd have another child and I'm not ready to share Josh, but I'm excited to see the way this changes our relationship. I'm excited to be with him when he tells all those people he's eager to tell. I'm excited to see him be a dad and Aspen be a sibling and mom and dad be grandparents...

I've been distracted all week and got absolutely nothing done. I took another pregnancy test this morning. The response: "Yes, I'm positive, It’s positive."

Monday, August 11, 2008

36. Eat one piece of fruit a day for 7 days

My original intent was to include some things on my list that would be easy to check off. Imagine my surprise when I realized that close to two weeks in, I've checked off exactly one thing. Some of these goals, like eating a piece of fruit a day, were meant to inspire a habit. While completing this task was easy, I know it's not going to become a habit. I did, however, discover something: I find fruit inconvenient, meaning that generally I can't really cook with it. However, it just so happened that we had Community Cycles over for a planning day the Sunday before last and we quartered a bunch of oranges as part of the breakfast. Most did not get eaten, so I ate them throughout the week in an effort to check off #36. Already cut up and on a big plate taking up space in the middle of my fridge, this task proved remarkably easy. It was convenient and most of the fruit I like--oranges, pineapple, mango--aren't.

So, if I were a nutritionist or health food magazine columnist, I'd tell me to plan ahead and prep fruit at the beginning of the week. It's a relatively simple change for someone whose diet is already pretty healthy. And perhaps that's what I most resent: the big changes don't apply to me. Those "10 things you can do for a healthier lifestyle or to lose 10 pounds" lists piss me off. Cut out sweets, do 20 minutes of exercise--even walking--a day, include veggies in every meal, cut back on saturated fats...uh-huh, no sweets at all, I ride my bike everywhere (Imagine my delight when I read about a guy in the NYTimes who decided to start riding the 2 miles--2 miles!!!--to work everyday and lost 15 pounds in 2 months), I don't eat saturated fats, and I eat vegetables in every meal--even breakfast. Everyday. Do I really have to worry about fruit too? Maybe I should adopt some (of those) bad habits so I can quit them and reap the benefits.

Or maybe I should just suck it up and eat some damn fruit--while I start thinking about the other 100 things I committed myself to.

Sunday, August 10, 2008

35. Make at least One Recipe from Each Cookbook We Own

Thus begins a daunting task:

1080 Recipes
-"Fried Garbanzo Beans"
Fresh from the Vegetarian Slowcooker-"French White Bean and Cabbage Soup" and "Almost Irish Stew"
How it All Vegan- "Sarah's Awesome Chili"
My Kitchen in Spain-"Fried Land Fish" and "Rice with Partridge"
Skinny Bitch in the Kitch-"Dream Bars"
Vegan with a Vengeance-"Tofu Ricotta" and "White Bean and Roasted Garlic Soup"
Yellow Rose Recipes-"Raw Corn Salsa," "Aloha Bread," "Spinach Chickpea Dip," and "Nacho Sauce"

Friday, August 1, 2008

101 Things in 1001 Days

The Mission:
Complete 101 preset tasks in a period of 1001 days.

The Criteria:
Tasks must be specific (ie. no ambiguity in the wording) with a result that is either measurable or clearly defined. Tasks must also be realistic and stretching (ie. represent some amount of work on my part).

Why 1001 Days?
Many people have created lists in the past - frequently simple goals such as New Year's resolutions. The key to beating procrastination is to set a deadline that is realistic. 1001 Days (about 2.75 years) is a better period of time than a year, because it allows you several seasons to complete the tasks, which is better for organising and timing some tasks such as overseas trips or outdoor activities.

Click here for more information.

Start Date: 01 August 2008
End Date: 29 April 2011

1. Pay off credit cards
2. Save $5000
3. Get renter’s insurance (Completed 01.10)
4. (Re)Subscribe to the magazines I read (Completed 12.08)
5. Donate money to a charity (Completed 12.16.08)
6. Set up the direct deposit for the joint account (Completed 09.08)
7. Get my credit rating
8. Keep track of all the money I spend for a month (Completed 01.31.10)
9. Create a budget (Began 02.10)

10. Find a dissertation chair
11. Finish proposal (Completed 12.02.08)
12. Finish Dissertation
13. Rework 1150, including a daily schedule
14. Plan rhetorical criticism course, including a daily schedule (Completed 8.28.08)
15. Keep a teaching journal (at least one entry a week)
16. Clean and organize office
17. Write a teaching philosophy
18. Update CV (Completed 8.25.08)
19. Graduate!!!!
20. Create a website
21. Submit to flowTV
22. Read one new pedagogical article a month
23. Complete a national job search

24. Go bike camping
25. Get a stamp in my passport
26. Visit another place in Colorado (outside the Denver area) (Completed 12.09)
27. Take one leisurely fun trip with Josh (for no other reason than to go somewhere)
28. Take a trip by train

29. Develop a vegan eclair
30. Make tamales (one attempt)
31. Make vegan apple fritters
32. Eat raw for one whole day
33. Try one new food I’ve never tried before (Completed 8.20.08)
34. Join a CSA
35. Make at least one recipe from each cookbook we own (Began 08.08)
36. Eat one piece of fruit a day for 7 days (Completed 8.09.10)
37. Live off the food in our cupboards/freezer for one week (no shopping at all)
38. Put together a cookzine

39. Take a daily multivitamin for 30 days (Completed 10.08)
40. Do a half-marathon
41. Set a PR in the Mud Run
42. Run the Bolder Boulder
43. Run 3 times a week for 6 months
44. Run a 7:30 mile
45. Join a softball team
46. Lose 7 pounds
47. Lose 10 pounds (Completed 06.09)
48. Get a full physical—blood work and all
49. Cut alcohol consumption by half (Completed 10.08)
50. Get my eyes checked
51. Get my teeth cleaned twice a year

52. Paint the main floor (Began 09.08)
53. Organize the library
54. Organize the pantry (Completed 02.15.10)
55. Go through kitchen, get rid of old/broken items, and make a list of things we need to replace
56. Get rid of (donate/craigslist/ebay) 100 things (7/100)
57. Transplant the mint (FAIL)
58. Reupholster the couch
59. Refinish the coffee table
60. Replant the cat grass
61. Make a piece of art for the house
62. Set up my dartboard (Completed 8.19.08)
63. Plant a garden (Completed Summer 09)

64. Watch the movies on my DVR (the ones I recorded from TCM in March) (Replaced DVR 03/09)
65. Watch every movie that won a “Best Picture” Oscar
66. Watch season 1 of Heroes (Completed 12.08)
67. Read 5 books I own, but haven’t read: The Bachman books, Perdido Street Station,
68. Get rid of all the duplicate books we have
69. Read Haunted (Completed 8.20.08)

Random Activities:
70. See all the Charles Haertling houses in Boulder
71. Go to the Denver Modernism Show (Completed 8.18.08)
72. See an opera
73. See Wicked
74. Go snowshoeing
75. Go tubing on Boulder Creek
76. Establish a monthly poker game (Tried 10/08 and 11/08. Failed)
77. Walk the length of the slackline
78. Spa appointment—must include a facial and massage
79. Do a 14’er
80. Try a new sport
81. Try yoga one more time

82. Upgrade the components on my bike—by myself
83. Learn how to ride a unicycle
84. Do one long ride a month (40+ miles)
85. Clean my bike once a month

86. Download the spellcheck for Word (damn MS!) (Completed 02.10)
87. Update address book
88. Put birthdays into calendar with reminders

89. Take another class at Mike’s
90. Learn how to use my camera manually
91. Frame one picture I took
92. Get a picture of Pasha with her eyes open—a good picture (Completed 05.16.09)
93. Complete Project 365: A Photo A Day

94. Finish the short story
95. Try to get said story published
96. Get a new tattoo (Begun 12/09)
97. Build something...don’t know what, but something.
98. Write a letter/postcard once a month
99. Dress up for Halloween (Completed 10.31.09)
100. Allow someone to take a picture of me in my bathing suit
101. Make a new list of 101 things

Thursday, June 5, 2008

Look Who's Coming to Dinner

This place needs a lot of things, but one of those things was not another cat. That, however, doesn't seem to matter. Yesterday I brought a new cat into the palace. His previous owners adopted a baby from Ethiopia who, as it turns out, is allergic to cats. So, he needed a home. I had no desire to get another cat, but he's a Devon Rex. I've always dreamed of owning a Sphynx, but know I'll never go through a breeder and so the chances of getting on are pretty much nil. But, a Devon Rex is like the next best thing. So, without further ado, here's Simi:
Look at his curly coat:
He's currently residing in one of the spare rooms to allow everyone to adapt to his presence before the big introductions. Josh, lucky guy that he is, may get the honors since he'll be alone here all weekend while I'm in California. I don't think he knew what he was getting into. Speaking of, we have another new addition to the palace:
At least it's a lot like having a new addition. The real question, though, is what Aspen will call him now. Granola Guy no longer seems to fit.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Black Thumb.

Tucson taught me many things. I do not adapt well to hostile environments. Heat makes me sweaty which makes me cranky which makes me hide out in my little apartment with the shades drawn--for six months at a time.Desert hippies are scary. One city cannot have too many head shops. Beetles come with antlers that rival any deer. And I cannot be trusted with plants.

In the course of doing time there, I managed to kill every cactus I bought. Cactus that were native to Tucson. Dead. And it didn't take me long. I took this to mean that I should in no way take responsibility for living plants. But now I think I something may have changed. While most of the yard is in dire need of TLC (which I'm slowly but surely attending to), we've had random tulips and lilac and even a baby aspen popping up--in close proximity to me.

At first I steadfastly ignored these obvious signs of life. Then, however, I came home with a mint plant (I blame spring fever) fully intending to kill it for basil mint pesto and it refused to die. In fact, I had to put it in a bigger pot and even gave a cutting its own little pot. Then, I bought a pothos which my mom immediately labeled a loser plant--as in even a loser can't kill it. For a while though, it seemed like my green streak was over. It wasn't looking good despite my care. Noticing that it was an awfully big plant for such a small pot, I transplanted it and it's now looking happy again. It's like I learned to speak plant or something.
Now, in usual dalyn fashion, I'm feeling cocky. My little plant collection has grown to include a table full of (hopefully) sprouting basil (I even bought some crazy rock shit to put in the bottom of the soil to help with drainage which I managed to spill all over the garage, but I think some got in where it was supposed to go), a lemon thyme plant, and two different pepper plants. The real challenge, though, is going to be the fuchsia I just bought to hang in the dining room. I hear they can be temperamental. More so than cactus apparently. Move over Martha...

Spring. I Think.

While I do love spring, I do not love a tease. We barbecued over the weekend and enjoyed 70 degree weather, but today I huddled indoors doing work since it was 37 degrees and rainy. It'd be nice if it'd make up its mind (though I'm sure many people have said the same of me). I did manage, however, to get some pictures of Pearl Street on my way to a meeting last week.
And, no matter how much I try, I can't help but be impressed by tulips. And daffodils. And seemingly dead stuff springing back to life.

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Hello Hypocrisy...

When Amy packed up and moved to the suburbs, I made fun of her relentlessly. Her reasons for doing so were perfectly logical: more space, more amenities, new baby, and with a much cheaper price tag. However, I still couldn't imagine what madness would prompt a person to move to Temecula, land of subdivisions, chain restaurants, oppressive heat, and even more oppressive soccer moms. I would, I declared rather vehemently, sooner die--or at least be seen wearing Crocs. I couldn't decide which fate was worse.

When I saw Amy's new house, I felt vindicated. Yes, it's beautiful. Yes, it's clean. Yes, it's a great deal. But still...such excess.

Then I moved to Lafayette. True, the heat is tolerable when it's not snowing and the population is certainly more diverse. But I also live on the edge of the plains. Indeed, our backyard is, for all intents and purposes, the plains.

This is not only the 'burbs, it's practically the Midwest. I had grown used to sharing my commute with cattle, but, while heading east, I found myself sharing the ride with bison. And, this morning a fox nearly ran right into me as it casually loped across my path. There is an excess of nature and space here that goes beyond the vast empty landscapes.

Such excess has breached the palace walls. What once seemed like maze of rooms half-filled with boxes and echoes has quickly transformed into a home--though I'm still not sure how. I once sternly lectured Josh on the dangers of 2100 square feet and the compulsion to fill it. But Josh has since gotten used to my afternoon emails, which inevitably begin with, "Guess what I found today...?" Furniture seems to follow me home no matter how much I protest. Hello suburbs.

We are currently looking for a third couch.

Wednesday, March 5, 2008


Signing a lease together was a big deal. But, it didn't really make an impression on me. I mean, I put my name on a piece of paper and put it out of my mind.

Moving in together was also a big deal. Sure, we'd basically been living together since the day we met, but, having never lived with someone before, it was significant. It was also seamless. I barely felt it.

Getting a joint bank account was a pretty big deal as well. The account is only for household expenses and there's no way to do anymore damage to my credit than grad school has inflicted already, but having the checks arrive with both our names on them was exciting for a moment.

Admittedly, this has been the easiest, most natural transition I could ever imagine (even if I couldn't imagine actually moving in with someone 8 months ago). But, it's the books that gave me pause. Josh easily has as many books as I do. Luckily we have the room for a library. But he also has a ridiculous number of manuals and other nonfiction books which challenge my system. How do you alphabetize a book on Linux that has no author? And should it be regular nonfiction or some special computer category? And how many editions does a person really need? More importantly, does anyone really read those things?

Seeing all our books jumbled together was a little disconcerting. Going through them to get rid of duplicates (together we had 3 copies of Fast Food Nation) was even more so. If I turned away for a moment, I'd be unsure whose copy of Wicked was whose, but I felt compelled to make sure mine ended up on the shelf and his ended up in the donation pile. Plus, what happens if we split? Who gets custody of the sole remaining copy of Into the Wild? Or Vegan Planet? Or Nickeled and Dimed?

Suddenly, I understand why people get pre-nups.

Monday, January 21, 2008


So the projected high today is 12. The low is -1. That would be in degrees. I can't even wrap my head around how cold that is. Polly (the dog) certainly can though. I took her out for a walk this morning. Since it is techinically freezing, I just took her to the local school so she could run around a bit. I let her off the leash and she promptly opened her mouth, stuck it in the snow, and ran along full speed shoveling piles of snow into her mouth. In theory, she was searching for wayward sticks. She succeeded only in making criss-crossing tongue tracks across a beautiful field of snow.

So, where did I get Polly the dog? She actually belongs to Josh, but I figured I better start getting used to her since we signed the lease on a house yesterday. It's true. In just five weeks, we'll be one big happy family living in sin. As it turns out, we found a wonderful townhouse in Lafayette (about 10 miles east of Boulder). It sits rather unironically at the corner of Merlin and Sir Galahad. Clearly, this is fate. But even more remarkable is that we--along with the aforementioned dog and my ever-expanding felines--will be occupying 2100 square feet. In short, it's practically a palace. This could be quite convenient since it's located within walking distance of 5 Mexican restaurants and I'm sure to start expanding right along with my kitties.

Other than the cold and the potential move, I'm just trying to finish getting my classes together. School started last week and I have the first half of each course planned, but I'm still trying to get as much prepping out of the way as possible. My TV class seems like it's going to be great. It's nice to have students who are already interested. Hopefully being forced to watch TV for homework won't take all the fun out of it. Anyway, I promised myself I'd get some writing done today and this , unfortunately, doesn't qualify....

Nico is crying pitifully. I'll just give him a little love first.