Sunday, May 27, 2007

Parents off to China Again!

I've seen this thing where they start an episode from the end, and then they get back to the ending from the beginning... you know what I mean? So I'm going to try that.
My parents left for China this evening (Motzai Shabbat).

2 days earlier...
Yaakov had a cold, and felt seriously icky, so he came home early. I let him sleep until we had to get up for our prenatal class. We finished our prenatal class on Thursday evening. We opted to have someone come to our house. It might be a bit more expensive, but we really wanted the 1 on 1 for several reasons.The woman who taught us (Libby Z., for any Modiin residents out there who are interested in prenatal classes) was really great. She's pretty practical and (I think) realistic. I just hope that I'll hold up okay during the birth...

After Libby left, we realized that we didn't have any chicken for Shabbat. So we set an alarm for bright and early, and called B.E., who totally saved our lives by taking Yaakov to Kiryat Sefer for grocery shopping.

Friday, I slept a lot of the day. I seem to be doing that a lot - sleeping all day and being up all night. At night, I tend to be too hot to sleep. I'm not sure why this happens, but... it just does. I end up taking a cool shower almost every night, and sometimes it helps. Mostly my palms are the problem. My face sweats, but for some reason the hot palms bother me much more.

I used the easiest Shabbat food recipe in the history of the world - Potatoes and chicken with granulated garlic in a clay pot like the one to the right. Actually, ours was cut into pieces, and I couldn't be bothered to put in any veggies. I had some fruit after dinner, and I pretended that that counts as veggies.

By the way, I love the clay pot. It's made by a German company called Romertopf. My mom got one when we lived in Germany (around when I was born), and I've never had chicken or roast better than my mom's made in it. The clay keeps all the moisture in! That means that even though I totally overcooked the chicken this week, it was pretty decent. The potatoes were great. For lunch, I had cold chicken, and Yaakov had cold cuts.

After lunch Shabbat morning, we took a nap, and then we went to my parents' house. They had my middle brother's 5-year-old twins over for all of Shabbat. My sister has also sent her almost 11-year-old twins over to help out. It was good that we brought Baby G's twin too... (a watermelon...) We also brought Poofy over. Menachem (5) was very excited and Yael (also 5) went back and forth between being very excited by Poofy and acting afraid of him...

My sister's 11-year-old boy decided that Poofy once bit him. I'm 100% certain that that never happened, because I remember being terrified that he'd bite the kids. He once snapped at a kid who pulled his tail (put his teeth on him, but didn't bite down), and once bit me to blood, when I grabbed his scruff while he was trying to mount a female. He's growled at kids a few times, and walked away countless times, but he's never bitten a human other than me, and that was so long ago that he still had baby teeth. I wonder what my nephew thinks he remembers...

Anyway, the kids drove Poofy completely nuts, so he decided to make himself scarce. He generally likes to go to my parents' sunroom anyway, because sometimes there are cats that he can see and growl at. (He can't get to them, b/c they're on the other side of the glass.)

Later, my sister's 13-year-old came over, but she had to leave a bit after that with her sister. They belong to the religious scouts in Modiin. They seem to be having a lot of fun at scouts. I think it's really great that they get this opportunity. I wanted to be a Girl Scout when I was a kid, but I couldn't because the meetings were all on Saturday, and the food wasn't kosher, and it was just generally impossible to work it out as a religious Jew. My dad belonged to a kosher Boy Scout troop when he was little. The way he describes it, I feel like I missed out on so much. I hope the religious scouts will do well here, so that our kids will have the opportunity my sister's kids have. (Her son decided he doesn't want to go.)

Meantime, Yaakov took the other kids to the park.

After the girls left, Yaakov brought the other kids back, and then we had dinner. While we were eating, my sister came with her husband and her two youngest daughters (2 and 1). The girls are soooo cute. The 1-year-old is just starting to walk, so it's very cute to watch her. Both girls were pretty fascinated by Poofy (he deigned to be petted by them, but he' s generally distrustful of short humans.. he finds that they're sometimes not so gentle).

When it started to get dark, my sister took whichever of her children who were still there, and went home. My dad came home and made havdala. The 5-year-old twins were still there, so my mom sent them upstairs to pack, and they brought their bags down. Then we asked Yaakov to put on a video for them, and hang out with them. I helped my parents (a little) to get their things packed and ready to go. They're taking a lot of supplies for the trip to China, although officially, they're going as tourists and not as guides this trip. I actually kind of think that it's annoying how much work they had to do for this trip when they paid close to full price anyway, but such is life. My mom is excited, because they'll be going to a whole bunch of new cities this time, and this will put them in a position to lead this trip (called China 2) in the future.

Anyway, they packed something like 6 suitcases with g-d knows what. I think my mom took 4 shirts, 2 skirts, and a sweater for herself... not really, but they were basically able to pack all of their clothes into a single gym bag each.

Meanwhile, we still have these two kids who need to be picked up and taken home... And my parents had to leave, so Yaakov and I stayed after my sister's husband came to pick them up and take them to the airport (strangely, since this leaves him with my parents' car - meaning that he and my sister will not have to share the car for the next 2.5 weeks - he doesn't find this a terrible hardship. Actually, I think he'd do it anyway - he's a very nice guy.)

After my parents left, I went around and tried to clean up a bit so that they'll get back to a decent house. I made their bed, and I unloaded the dishwasher and put new bottles of diet coke (one with and one without caffeine) in the fridge so they'll have cold drinks right when they get back. I didn't find much else that I could do without a lot of bending, which I don't do so well these days.

Then I sat downstairs and waited for my brother to come pick up his kids. He must have hit bad traffic or something, because it took him an hour to get from Beit Shemesh to Modiin, a ride that's usually about 25 minutes. I started to get kind of worried. The road is an awful road, and I couldn't get my brother on the cell phone. My brother-in-law came back from the airport and was going to give Yaakov and me a ride back home, but we still had the kids. I asked him to lend us cabfare, and he was about to leave when my brother arrived.

In the end, my brother-in-law took us home, which was really nice and helpful.

When I FINALLY got home, I took Poofy for a walk, and on the way into the building, my neighbor said that they'd been wondering if everything was ok. I gave him the super-short version, and said thanks, everything was fine, and baby isn't going anywhere...

If only I weren't having quite so many contractions... ugh... they're not serious, I know, but they hurt just enough to make me crabby all the time.

I just hope that they stay not serious until my parents get back... I really don't want to think about the logistics of labor & delivery and getting a baby home and all that without my mom to help us through it all...


Tuesday, May 22, 2007

My Trip to Rehovot

Yesterday, my parents told me that they were going to Rehovot to visit my oldest brother & his adorable wife and (6) kids. Since I hadn't seen them in a while, I took the opportunity to visit them as well.

My brother's oldest, Tzvi (13), had a meeting to go to. He's participating in some kind of Torah-learning contest, I think. I didn't get the details.

The next three, Elisheva(10), Avital(9), and Dina(7) put on a show for us. In the first act, the three sat in a cave, (a sheet draped over two chairs) next to a small campfire (made of paper), dressed as cave-dwellers, and the dialog was as follows:
Dina: UGGGH!
Avital: UGGGH!
Elisheva: UGGGH UGGGH!
Avital (to Elisheva): Why do you always change the subject?!

They then did a brilliant imitation of a silly argument between my parents... (my father singing a song that doesn't end, and my mother trying to get him to stop...)

It was very cute.

Baby G. got excited and started dancing, so I called the girls over and had them put their hands on my belly to feel the movement The next one, Elihu (5), also wanted to feel. After feeling a kick, he said;
"Your tummy's going up and down." He started showing me how he could do it with his tummy too.
"But there's a baby in there," I said.
He sat down on the couch in stunned silence. His mom, Ilana, said "Elihu, is t.c. a mammal?" (no, she doesn't really call me t.c.) Elihu was still too stunned to answer.

A little while later, he decided he wanted to feel again. He put his hand on my breast....I jumped a bit before I said "no, down there" and put his hand safely on my tummy... I forgot that little kids do that and have no idea why there's an issue ;).

After careful consideration and another round of "there's a baby in there," he asked me "Is that why you're so fat?" to which I responded yes... (hey, at least now I have an excuse).

Later he asked "when the baby's little, will you bring it here so I can see it?"
I told him I'll see, but that I'm sure he'll see the baby. He might have to come to Modiin, though.

The youngest boy, Amiel (2), is just starting to talk. He says lots of things - "Mommy" and "Daddy" and "Tal" (for Avital). He can tell you where his shoes and eyes are. He can dance. He's very cute. He also gives VERY nice hugs!

There's lots more stuff I could tell, but I'm trying desperately to avoid whining...

t.c. Goodman

Friday, May 18, 2007

Home Stretch?

I've completed 33 weeks of this pregnancy. That means that my baby should weigh almost 4.5 lbs, and that in another week, the lungs should be fully developed. It means that my baby is packing on fat nicely. It means that the future of this baby looks very very good.

Unfortunately, it also means that I'm in the end phase. I'm in the phase where my body is completely unwieldy, where I have one t-shirt that fits me for sleeping in, where my whole tummy and everything else itches fiercely. I'm at the point that even if I weren't choking on the allergens in the air, my lungs are already too squished to breathe comfortably. My back is well beyond the point of being able to support my weight. I'm exhausted. I'm uncomfortable in every position. The palms of my hands and soles of my feet feel like they're on fire. My face sweats no matter what I do.

Oh, and I'm so hormonal I can barely even get out a simple sentence without breaking into tears.

I've gotta tell y'all... this pregnancy thing is not easy. And I still have 7 weeks until the due date, not to mention the fact that if I'm like my mom and sister, then I've got 9 weeks before they induce me to get this child out.

I'm starting to break down. I mean, I really feel like I'm beyond my limit. I know that this is nothing - I should be happy that this pregnancy is basically free of complications. The nausea is long-over, I don't have gestational diabetes, significant swelling, bleeding (or even spotting). This is about as easy as a pregnancy gets. So why am I not glowing? I just don't know... I don't even have half of the things that my pregnancy book warns me are totally normal and expected, not to mention the scary awful ones...

Do other women really go through this and then CHOOSE to have more children? And why did nobody tell me how difficult pregnancy really is? Would it have made a difference? Probably not, but... I wish I'd known what I was getting into. Then again, it might have made it all that much worse. I don't know... I'm so confused.

Everyone tells me that after the pregnancy is over, I'll forget how bad it is, and I'll be willing to go for it again. I hope so, I guess. I did plan on having more than one child, but the way I feel now, I just can't imagine going through another pregnancy...

Okay, enough whining for one day. I have other (semi-interesting) things to write, but no patience to write them... so Shabbat Shalom for now.


Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Thanks for All the Good Wishes

My burns are recovering very well, thank G-d (and the dermatologist).

I no longer look like a freak from a monster movie.
There are a few pink spots, but very little pain. Just a bit of itching...


Sunday, May 13, 2007

Supporting My Habit!

I've been told that it's very mercenary of me to have Amazon links on my blog...
You have to understand. This country I live in lacks decent book stores, so I belong to a book club.
All proceeds from Amazon purchases made through this blog go to supporting the book club. So far, after close to a year, I've had two readers make purchases, for a total of $7 in my Amazon account... They won't even let me use the money until it gets up to $15.

Please support our book club. It doesn't cost you any extra to order through me!

Thank you,

Saturday, May 12, 2007


For those who are wondering about my burns...

The burn sites aren't hurting so much, but my body is reacting to the trauma or something. I can't seem to stay awake very long, and when I am, I'm not particularly alert.

There are about 6 smallish blisters (size of a dime or smaller). Yaakov says they don't look so bad, but to me, they look horrible. I'm probably just taking it really badly.

Do me a favor, and please don't give me pancake making tips. I think I'd rather not hear them right now.


Friday, May 11, 2007

The Pancakes of Doom.

Since right after Passover, I've been craving pancakes or waffles. So yesterday, I finally bought syrup (let's face it, pancakes without syrup aren't even worth it)...

This morning, I woke up, got Yaakov to sift some flour (I really don't like sifting flour), and mixed up a batch of pancake batter.

Somehow, on the third pancake, I put in too much oil, and when I was flipping it, the oil sprayed up into my face! I got my face into cold water immediately, but hot oil is powerful stuff.

I kept my face in a wet towel (Yaakov asked why I didn't use a bucket of cold water... I think that my increasing girth has finally convinced him that I am a whale, complete with blow-hole on the top of my head...) and then I went to the doctor. Turned out that there was a dermatologist in the office who saw me right away and told me to take whatever painkillers I can take when I'm pregnant, keep the cold compress on, and put a cream on the burns (he gave me the prescription for the cream.)

I put cream on, went home, took painkillers, and slept with the towel on my face. I woke up feeling a good bit better, but I'm still feeling kind of out of it, and I have several blisters/craters on my face from the burn.

So remember folks, not too much oil in your pancakes.


Wednesday, May 09, 2007

Weird Dream

I had a dream last night that my parents were trying to sell a house, so I came up with this great idea - we'd have a raffle.

I decided tickets would be $10 each, and we'd sell loads and we'd offload the house without having to deal with real estate agents or anything.

So the first person came and bought 10 tickets right away, and I was like "cool, see it's working"
and then no one else came.
no one
I freaked out completely. I was like "oh my g-d what have I done, I'm forcing my parents to sell a whole house worth at least $180K for $100." So I sat there and cried, and woke up Y and told him to help me. Finally we decided that the best thing to do was to tell the lady who'd bought the tickets that someone else won, but she'd gotten the second prize - $100.

I woke up kinda freaked. I mean, what kind of stupid person would raffle off a house?! You'd have to realize that you'd have to sell some 20,000 tickets to make it a good deal. (though I suppose you could make the tickets $100 apiece and then you'd only need to sell 2000...)

Anyway, Yaakov always tells me to write down my dreams... so now you've all heard it... If you want to raffle off a house, you need to sell a LOT of tickets.

Tuesday, May 08, 2007

Thought for the day... (#2)

I didn't bite off more than I can chew. I just didn't realize how quickly my jaws would get tired.

Monday, May 07, 2007

TV Asthma

I've noticed that a lot of people think that asthma is what you see on tv. People think that asthma is basically hyper-ventilating and that if you just breathe slowly and deeply, the attacks will go away.

Well, here's the thing. The people having asthma attacks on TV are ACTORS. They're not having real asthma attacks. If they were, the camera man would come running and help them rather than continuing to film.

Next, there appear to be several different ways that real asthma presents. For me, it's a weird wheeze at the end of my exhales coupled with coughing fits, complete with choking.

As such, no amount of deep breathing is going to solve it, especially since I can't even build lung capacity right now. The baby is taking up too much space in the chest/abdominal cavity.

Oh and another thing... yesterday I asked for a recommendation for an asthma specialist. I received recommendations for a chiropractor and a homeopathic "healer." Additionally, someone called claiming that he could use hypnosis to cure my asthma. By the way, I don't generally discount claims that people make. In the case of homeopathy, however, the research and science is overwhelming. It just isn't real.

Remind me to specify that I want someone with an MD from a reputable medical school!

Saturday, May 05, 2007

Lack of Anonymity

A lot of blogs are anonymous or close to it.
Mine isn't. Not only mine isn't, but people including my husband's manager, my mother, my neighbors, and my father-in-law read it.

Which is mostly really cool. It gives me an easy way to keep up with people, share experiences, etc.

On the other hand, when I really want to rag on someone, I can't. When I want to share some juicy gossip, I have to be aware that even if I don't share the person's name, someone will recognize the situation and know exactly who I'm talking about...

All of this is why I haven't shared a lot of the details of my pregnancy. In an anonymous blog, you can tell people all about the messy stuff - the internal exams, the kegels, the works. But here, I really don't want all my friends and neighbors to know that the Dr. did X or that I'm having Y problem... And it's kinda hard when all I want to do is whine!

That said, I'm now going to indulge in a little bit of whining. Those of you who don't know me very well can assume that I'm censoring myself somewhat because of my aforementioned audience. Aforementioned audience: feel free to skip this part...

I have asthma and I feel like it's killing me. I keep coughing and coughing and well, if you've been pregnant, you know that coughing can have yucky side effects. And I don't mean just the incredibly painful tearing sensation in my abdomen.

A few weeks ago, when the wheezing was very bad, my doctor gave me a prescription for a nebulizer and some medication that goes into it. The stuff pretty much works. Not perfect, but it helps a lot. I ran out, and asked him to prescribe more, and he didn't renew the prescription. (I have to ask him to call me tomorrow to tell him that I'm wheezing again). I went to the other dr in the clinic, and he said a regular inhaler is plenty. However, the regular inhaler seems to do zero. As in, I feel absolutely no difference at all.

So now, I'm coughing and coughing, and I'm out of medication that sorta works and all I have is stuff that doesn't work, but I'm still taking it in case maybe it has a cumulative effect or maybe I would actually be worse without it.

But I'm thinking jeez. I have another 9 weeks to go before the due date, and my mom and sister pretty much consistently went over, so I could have as much as 11 weeks to go. How am I supposed to live with coughing, difficulty breathing, wheezing, and that tearing sensation in my side for the next 9-11 weeks?!

And let's just say, for argument's sake, that I somehow live through this (not like I have much choice, unless I choke to death)... How am I supposed to get pregnant ever again, knowing that pretty much as soon as the nausea ends, the asthma begins?? I don't know if I could handle this again?! I'm just crying my eyes out with frustration and pain, and Yaakov asked if I wanted to go to the ER, but ... I can't go to the ER every time I have an asthma attack - I'd have to take up residence there. I just can't stay like this. I don't know what to do!

There, whine over... thanks for listening.


Thursday, May 03, 2007

Random Thing I Love About Israel

That it's considered normal to play a song on the radio about the elf who goes and bends the bananas...

And that the video I found when I went to look for the song is sooooo cute and SO Israeli...

(warning, it contains a woman dancing and wearing pants at the same time...)

* Just realized that many of my readers will be horrified that I listen to music during Sfira. I actually did a whole lot of soul-searching and heard a shiur from a Rav at Bar Ilan which claimed that listening to music in private is not a problem during sfira. Since I am prone to depression and music helps, I'll take just about any heter I can get on this...

Tuesday, May 01, 2007

Thought for the day...

Having diagnosed asthma is way better than having undiagnosed asthma...
few things feel better than the way that lungs clear up with an inhalation.