Thursday, December 14, 2006

Babymooning in Cebu!

We're off to Cebu tomorrow early morning and I'm so excited! A friend of ours is getting married on Saturday, and The Hubby and I decided might as well make a vacation out of it. So we're leaving first thing tomorrow, and we'll be back on the last flight Sunday.

We're booked at the Tambuli Beach Resort on Mactan Island. A friend of ours said it's been sunny Cebu, and to bring sunblock and shades. Yes! There's a chance for me to be a sun-kissed hot momma beach goddess! The Hubby and I haven't gone anywhere at all this year, much less the beach, so I have faded to some washed-out non-color. And I figure this will be the last beach trip in a long time (what age can babies go to the beach?), so might as well make the most of it.

I haven't packed at all (and I haven't got a thing to wear to the wedding!) and there are tons of stuff to finish so we minimize backlog while we're gone. Argh! This is the part I hate--getting ready for the trip.

I hope it's sunny skies and balmy breezes all the way!

OK. Break over. Back to work.

Monday, December 11, 2006

My Christmas Wish List

The Hubby has been asking what I want for Christmas. I actually don't know. But here's a list of things that have, at one time or another, crossed my mind as must-haves:

1. Digital voice recorder - for when I do interviews, or when I want to make notes to myself, or dictate a thought or an idea when I have no time to scrounge around for a pen and notebook. What's a good brand? And what features are desirable? Pardon my ignorance. But I still want one. Preferably before my big interview next Wednesday.

2. Starbucks planner - I do not really need this one. But I love planners like this. Such pretty paper! But I won't be able to coffee up for another year or so...oh well.

3. A glass pen - saw one in Landes at Podium a year ago. Been hinting to The Hubby about it, but he's far too practical to get me something like this. But it's so lovely. And it comes with a quaint little bottle of ink. A wax seal would be nice too.

4. Cell phone - mine has seen better days. And it's hell to charge. Been charging it in the car! It would be nice to have a PDA phone, but they're kinda clunky. Just something with a huge phonebook would do. Maybe a camera, though I haven't really been using mine. And something that properly displays the caller's name! Though The Hubby says I should clean up my phonebook--probably some double entries there.

5. Laptop - like my phone, this laptop has seen better days. But it's been so useful and handy, it's had a good life. It's just so slow and beat up. But I'll still be able to hobble along I guess.

6. Bikini - saw one in Speedo, the kind I like--the one that isn't just a display suit, but something you can actually swim in (yes, I still wear bikinis--I'm a hot momma!).

7. Shopping spree in National Bookstore - Powerbooks or Fully Booked would be good too, but I want to rack up more points on my Laking National card. What books shall I buy? Breastfeeding, baby care/parenting, more cookbooks, of course, my writing books, the latest Kellerman and Binchy novels, historical fiction (particularly about royalty--not romantic fiction, though I'd probably take a look at the latest bobo books), books on Christianity and faith (though they'd have a wider selection at the VCF bookstore or OMF or PCBS), children's books like Guess How Much I Love You, The Giving Tree, I Love You Forever and Dr. Seuss, more fiction, and magazines galore. Whew! No wonder I can stay the entire day in National!

8. Fountain pen - I suppose a fountain pen would be a tad more practical than a glass pen. I'd like one with a fine nib. The Parker I use at the moment still writes a bit too thick for me. Or it could be my ink...

9. New rubber shoes or sneakers - I haven't bought a new pair in years! And my sneakers are getting tight because my feet are growing :(

10. House makeover - I want someone to come over the house and just fix it up. Put up my paintings, rearrange furniture--whatever. I want my house to look good without compromising function. And if the makeover comes with free furniture and stuff, who am I to refuse?

11. Complete sessions with a professional organizer - if I get a house makeover, why not get someone to help us get and stay organized and efficient? I read about one in Real Living, a professional organizer I mean. I wonder how much she charges.

12. Childbirth classes - I really am determined to give birth naturally, using Lamaze. Didn't think these childbirth would be a bit expensive! Oh well.

13. A full day at a spa - with the works. From hair all the way down to my toes (especially my toes--been having a hard time cutting my toenails already!). A body massage, a scrub, a facial, a hand massage, a foot scrub and massage, oh oh and waxing!

Hmm. That's about all I can think of for now.

Must go make my gift list for others.

It's Official!

Any time from March 25 to March 30, 2007, we can expect the arrival of Erynne Isobel Hermoso Prudente. I just knew this baby was a girl!

Raine is about a foot long now, and a little more than a pound. A different OB-Sonologist did the ultrasound, and she still had the same comment: ang likot! And she is, really. She has a variety of kicks and movements, I just have to shake my head and smile. I ask her all the time, "Just what are you doing in there?"

My family is excited, especially my seesters, who have been dying to go shopping. I haven't bought a single thing for the baby yet. I'm blessed to have friends and relatives who will hand me down stuff like a playpen, a stroller, baby carrier and stuff like that. We also have that heirloom crib from my dad's side. I know I have to make a list of baby stuff we need to get. Will work on that by New Year. Still have a lot of time anyway.

Gotta go back to work!

Thursday, December 07, 2006

Baby Watch & House Dilemma

As always, I have an article due tomorrow, and I am blogging to warm up my writing brain.

So what's been going on aside from my non-stop growing?

Well the baby's been moving--really kicking up a storm in there, making the rounds of my belly. Baby usually starts out mid-tummy, making me aware of its presence with a well-aimed kick (and to think these are just tiny, 5-month-old baby kicks! what more when baby's almost due?). Then baby starts trawling the bottom of my belly, moving side to side, nudging my bladder. I like that the least.

Funny thing is, at my last OB visit last month, I couldn't feel baby move at all. "You mean you can't feel anything, even a flicker?" asked my OB in disbelief. And instantly I felt like, what kind of mother am I, can't even feel my baby move! "Well, maybe she's shy," said the OB, with what I felt was doubt in her voice (but that's paranoid me talking). "Try playing faster music."

I'd been playing a lot of classical music lately (good thing I enjoy classical and the opera). But one day after my OB visit, I decided to play Everything But the Girl's Home Movies album. And all of a sudden, I felt a sort of weird gurgling, bubbly feeling in my belly. Baby finally moved! And hasn't stopped moving since. Apparently classical puts baby to sleep; she prefers EBTG (particularly Apron Strings), U2, a little Bob Marley, some Jars of Clay, Brazilian-percussion-heavy music. This is my kind of baby! The Hubby was excited to feel baby move. You can really feel the kicks when you put your hand over my belly!

We're going for an ultrasound this weekend, hopefully we'll know if baby is Trist or Raine. Would be great to finally refer to baby by name and correct pronoun. I'm excited!

We have to decide how to set up the house soon. Right now, our second bedroom is our office-cum-guestroom. It has its own bathroom, but it's weirdly cut up, so it seems to have less floorspace than the other room, which we currently use as our bedroom. We were thinking of converting the office into our bedroom, and our bedroom into the nursery-guestroom (it's usually my mom and sister who stays over anyway). But where to put the office? With the bed in here, there won't be space for much, let alone two desks with two desktops, two laptops and a plethora of peripherals.

It would look terrible to put the office in the living area, which is tiny as it is. Unless we totally cut down on hardware. Can we survive with a laptop each and a desktop as Hubby's server? Probably. But what about the printer, scanner, humongous fax? I am so terrible at space planning and interior decorating. Which is why more than five months after we've moved in, I still have several boxes of unpacked things!

I was thinking I'd probably have baby in our room till the sixth month, then move him into his own room after. So we could still stay in our current bedroom, which has more space for the crib (our crib is a huge heirloom one, which used to belong to my dad!). But wouldn't it be harder to move rooms and rearrange and all that when the baby is here already? I was hoping to have the nursery set up by February. Right now our walls are plain white. I want a colorful mural on the walls of baby's room. And we'd need some cabinets installed in there. I am also planning to put my ever-so-comfy-ever-so reliable sofa bed (desperately in need of a paint over and new upholstery though!) in the nursery. I suppose I can nap there once in awhile, and guests still can have some privacy. Hmm. What else does a nursery need? And how do we solve the displaced office dilemma?

Argh! Can anyone help me out here?

Sunday, December 03, 2006

Hubby the Chef

The Hubby's been able to cook more lately. Which is great because I don't really feel like cooking much these days, and my palate has been off--I can't get the taste right. Either too salty or too bland.

Of course, since The Hubby has been in charge, we've been having a lot of his type of food, the very Pinoy/Laguna dishes, which I've never really eaten too much of in my life. First off, we've been having a lot of seafood. I never got used to eating seafood; in Baguio seafood is rare and expensive. In Laguna, it's in abundance. While we're on his-province/my-province food, one thing I cannot get is how he does not consider plain vegetables a main dish. It's always a side kick to something else. In our Baguio house, veggies ruled. We can actually eat salad and consider that a full meal. I love stir-fried veggies, sometimes with the token pieces of meat, sometimes plain veggies. Often with chicken fillet or ground meat.

At any rate, I've enjoyed what The Hubby has been cooking. He has this amazing shrimp in coconut milk thing that makes me eat like there was no tomorrow (and I'm allergic to shrimp! or at least I was...haven't been getting my crustacean allergy lately). I was able to duplicate his recipe yesterday though, and The Hubby even said that I cooked it better than he did *ear-to-ear-grin*.

Then he had this galunggong dish--not your ordinary GG! It was his own version of this Italian fish dish with salomiglio sauce. Yum! I don't really like galunggong (or any bony fish for that matter, since I am lousy with getting the bones out and being the low EQ person that I am, I find the debone-as-you-eat process too tedious to be really worth the effort, which is why I love canned tuna, boneless bangus and big tilapia), but this one was really worth the effort:

The sauce is sort of sweet-salty-sour. It has capers, red wine vinegar, sugar and (in this case), lime. And the fish was grilled, not fried. Yummy!

Then again, as The Hubby says, "Good thing you're so easy to please." Hmm. I think I really am. Sometimes I wish The Hubby were as easy to please as I am.

Sometimes, I think, the reason why I don't feel like cooking too much is that The Hubby is such a food critic. Unlike me, he cannot just sit down and enjoy the food sometimes. He has to analyze everything. And he always has points for improvement. And when you're tired and not really in the mood to cook in the first place, or conversely, put your heart and soul into preparing that dish, it's disheartening. And now, with the yummy, yummy dishes he's been putting out, I feel like I cannot compete.

In fairness (a phrase that is so overused), The Hubby does appreciate my efforts, if not the results. His palate is just so different from mine, as is his idea of what 'good food' is. I'm trying to adjust--and actually like--his lowlander type of food; sometimes I wish he were more open to the upland foods. But I appreciate the fact that he appreciates what I do.

But back to the food topic. I think I have to curb my eating. My doctor said I was overweight at my last check up. And I feel I've already passed the 150-pound mark. Argh! When the baby is about a pound or so at most, and given that my -- ahem-- bosom added on about two pounds, and you have like four pounds for placenta and amniotic fluid, that means that the extra 15 pounds I packed on is all me! And I know exactly where they settled: on my arms, my butt, my thighs and my face. *grumble grumble*. And everyone says that I will pack on more pounds in the last three months. Oh no! That's going to be hell to lose after, given my aversion to exercise and my love for eating. Especially when The Hubby cooks.

I need to exercise more! Must walk more. And get in more swimming. Yes. Must do that. But let me go get a snack first.