Cake, cake and more cake.

I have a nifty little recipe clipper/collector thing that I use to collect tasty little bits from the internet.
I originally got it to keep track of some Icelandic recipes that I want to have on hand and be able to make here in the US. I’m by no means a fabulous cook, but I’m starting enjoy dabbling in the kitchen more and more. Slowly but surely I’m getting better.
Many of the ingredients that are available at home I can’t find here or they function way different. American cheese, for example, is not made out of cheese half the time – and doesn’t behave AT ALL like Icelandic cheese when it’s in the pot or pan. Kind of gross actually, I wish my American friends knew what they were missing out on; maybe that would encourage cooks here to stand up for less processed/chemically laden ingredients.
And sometimes I just don’t have the faintest clue as to what the English name is for what I want.  One example is the spice “múskat” which I have hunted for high and low for years. I think it’s called nutmeg in English, but then again that could be “brúnkökukrydd” which is similar but not the same.  And all these are used in a pinch of this or a dash of that format, but boy, you sure notice if they are missing.

Anyhow. I do enjoy baking more than I do cooking, and now that I’m looking through my Paprika app, the “cake” folder is a whole lot fatter than any other folder… yikes!  Thankfully most of those are recipes that I have not yet gotten around to make or I’d no doubt be a few hundred pounds heavier than I am.
Husband  barely has any sweet tooth at all, but favors foods so spicy that I can’t even look at them without breaking out in cold sweat.

Today, my cake folder got one recipe fatter, as I tripped over this link from a fellow oh-dear-jesus-will-this-pregnancy-ever-end mommy blogger, for a Chocolate Eclair Cake.  Click at own risk. Truly might be worth putting on a bra and going to get some ingredients, but first I have to wait for my oven situation to be fixed….


Packing a bag for the hospital

With the due date rapidly approaching, my weekly knocked-up newsletters (from several sources, because I like second opinions) have increasingly been focusing on the all important packing of the hospital bag.

As in, what should you bring with you for labor, delivery and recovery – other than whatever scraps of clothing you can still use to cover your body for the ride to the hospital, along with a pair of flip-flops or Uggs, as appropriate.

There is nothing remotely minimalistic about those lists – with some topping out with over 100 “must have” items. Reading through made me feel like I was heading to a doomsday preppers camp for an extended stay rather than a couple of days in a well equipped modern hospital.
I get that it can be nice to have a few of your own things, its common knowledge that a hospital gown doesn’t flatter anyone and I fully understand the need to smuggle in some snacks…  But enough with the 3-of-everything in at least 3 sizes policy.  And for a planned c-section, I understand a mumu or something similar would be nice for the ride home, to keep clothes off the incision.

Since I don’t want to give the hospital staff the wrong impression, I shall arrive with a packed bag. Trying to at least look the part of a prepared mother, although I’m sure my cover will be out the window 5 minutes in. So far my bag contains 2 toothbrushes (brand new, for this special occasion), toothpaste, lip balm, a pair of socks and a warm zippered hoodie. Oh, and a nice roll of my personal toilet paper, I don’t trust that the hospital will supply the tender quality that my bottom is used to.  This is where I have stalled out. I know I’ll have to add some clothes for the kid to come home in, some undies, toiletries…  and some other crap I guess. As long as I have my iPhone and charger, I can operate the command center from just about anywhere and bring in supplies. During the hospital tour I made sure I had decent reception and finally AT&T’s “largest network in the nation” managed to cover my whereabouts.

Oh, and look at the time. Time to go stab myself again, ugghhhh.

Switching to Heparin

A few years ago I discovered that I have Factor V Leiden, when I had a DVT in my left leg. That was fun. After a few days in the hospital and a few months of recovery, I went back to my normal life. Until that fateful day last summer when I peed on a stick (and found myself just a wee bit pregnant), Factor V and I haven’t really kept in touch.
After being officially declared knocked up by the medical profession, it was on to prophylactic Lovenox shots (blood thinner). One daily. I distinctly remember griping about having to shoot up on a daily basis with that tiny needle, and feeling plenty sorry for myself in the process. Especially those days when I jabbed a vein and earned a nice bruise for it.

The basics of a "bruise yourself" kit

The basics of a “bruise yourself” kit

OB initially suggested taking me off Lovenox for 24 hrs come week 39 and immediately induce. I’d prefer to let labor start naturally if I can, so we agreed that I would switch to Heparin (another blood thinner), with twice a day injections. Heparin gets out of your system faster, so if anything comes up or starts early, my treatment options are better.
The doctor held to his bargain of twice a day – but upon reviewing doses and syringes, it became evident that I’d have to do two shots, twice a day.  Doc conveniently let the pharmacist break the news to me, but with 7500 units a day, in syringes that only hold 5000 units and needles that dull after drawing up & one stick through my lizard skin – it was the only option.  Well, I lie. My other option would be using a larger syringe with a sewer pipe sized needle. Oh. Hell. No.
The heparin needle is quite a bit larger than the pre-filled Lovenox, and the first couple of days I didn’t exactly feel like an expert drawing up and injecting, but as with everything you get used to that fast. What I’m not getting used to is the size of the needle, and just about every stick yields bleeding and bruises. Thankfully I have outgrown anything with a proper waistband, and my soft, oversize yoga pants don’t irritate too bad.

18 more days…  not that I’m counting down or anything!!

Oh hey look…

I still have a blog!

I’m glad WordPress graciously allows for slacky bloggers, because I’ve certainly been one recently.
Not that there hasn’t been plenty going on, because when you are about 9 months pregnant, life is just full of excitement and thrills, hormones and mood swings.

Odds are most of the stuff going on with my bodily functions are interesting only to me, but for posterity I shall put them down on paper. Screen. Because maybe one day when the hormones sober up, I’ll want to go back and read it with a clear head.

First up, I went for gestational diabetes testing, and flunked that with style. Turns out you can projectile vomit that orange sugar testing liquid they give you quite a distance. Even someone such as myself, with a proven record as a neat and mess-free morning sickness puker.  Many apologies to the cleaning crew at the lab for hosing down the tiles. I tried to wipe most of it up but the grout wasn’t looking so hot.
I was pretty devastated with the outcome, but a good buddy of mine who is diabetic lent me a blood glucose meter and trained me up in the works. As it turns out, my blood sugar is boring as hell and by producing a glucose log at the next doctors appointment I was told to monitor only fasting glucose and take it from there. I’ve remained predictably boring on that front too ever since.

Best get some work done now – but more catching up soon. Pinky swear and promise.

Glucose tolerance test with a republican gun twist

Finally got my butt to the lab for some more poking and prodding. Can’t complain, it’s been a while since last time.  Got up bright and early after fasting for 10 hours and having mentally prepared myself to chug down 8 ounces (237 ml) of extremely brightly colored orange liquid, containing 75 grams of sugar. And god knows how much dye and artificial flavoring, but to my untrained non-chemist eye: a shitload. The damn thing was struggling to stay in solution.

I thought I’d get a pin prick before drinking to establish a fasting level, but they just tossed me a bottle and told me to drink up, wait an hour and then proceeded with the stab and jab for the needed tests. I thought I’d broken up with Nausea for good a couple of months ago, but the bitch was hiding in that orange bottle. As I waited out my hour, it was all I could do to keep it down. I don’t know why it was so gnarly, it’s not like I have an awkward relationship with sugar. We are best buds.

It didn’t help the situation that a fat bastard dressed to the nines in hunting gear rolled into the lab when I had about half an  hour to go. After checking in, he started a one man Republican rally, rambling on about how Obama was not going to take his guns. His plan of action, faced with the dreadful prospect of bringing guns up to registration levels of, oh say maybe cats/dogs/cars was to add a crossbow to the collection and “go all natural on their asses”.  I was oddly comforted by that thought, as I can’t see this man having the upper body strength to actually use one, or how he’s going to aim an arrow at anyone over that 300 lbs gut he was sporting.
Part 2 of the speech was titled “of course maniacs and mentally ill people should not have guns, that is just ridiculous” but then added that it was unconstitutional to screen anyone for mental illness, because “that shit is private matter and the gubberment does not need to be up in everybody’s business”.

As you might imagine, this did very little to combat Nausea. I did decide that if I was going to toss cookies I’d aim for my new buddy, since the color would nicely compliment his orange suspenders and orange hunting hat.  By some miracle I was able to keep it down until the lab tech came to get me. I’ve never before been so happy to see someone who wanted to stick me with needles and steal my blood.