Monthly Archives: July 2008


  • 11:44 omg EARTHQUAKE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! #

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pesky caffeine

Ben went to the pediatrician today and got a completely clear bill of health. He’s grown two inches, and is two feet exactly. He’s also gained two pounds and change (11lbs, 5oz total), so he’s growing nicely. All his development is fine – he tracks things that move, starts at loud noises, and even smiles at us. I’m so proud of my little guy for learning to smile and chortle. And I am so happy and relieved that I am, apparently, doing everything right. (“Keep doing what you’re doing,” the pediatrician told me.)

As for why I am up at 11:42pm. Well. That will learn me to put chocolate covered coffee beans into my de-caffeinated system. Now I’m awake and can’t sleep. Bother.

Following things are being done in lieu of sleep:

– Cleared off desk
– Did Ben’s laundry
– Edited a friend’s resume
– Signed petition and wrote letter to CBC
– Debating installing new QuickCam (for video chat between Ben and his grandparents in Pennsylvania)

I also spent an hour tonight maintaining my social life. Or resurrecting, I should say. For the past six weeks, I’ve been in a kind of daze of New Motherhood, as I got used to Ben – and Ben got used to, well, Life Outside Me. My mom was here for the first few weeks. Then I had a week without parents. Then Paul’s parents came in. Then I had last week to adjust to being on my own. And now, I finally feel like there is some sort of shape to my days, and I can go back to having a life that includes people beyond my son.

And most importantly, Ben mastered bottles – which means we can LEAVE THE HOUSE and I don’t have to stop for forty-five minutes to breast feed him while we’re out. Instead, I can give him a bottle of pumped milk, or the emergency soy formula I carry as powder in a bottle, ready to be mixed with water. I can always whip out my breast feeding cover (it’s a giant bib) or take advantage of the space and tinted windows in my Mazda 5, but it’s WAY easier to hold him in his sling while I give him a bottle.

Now that I am awake again, and can leave the house, I have started making plans. I went to a stroller based exercise class this morning – jogging with strollers, interspersed with strength training exercises. I made plans to visit my office mates tomorrow before my obstetrician checkup. I scheduled time to meet up with friends on the Westside on Thursday afternoon, including one friend who nannies for two year old twins. I am going to a New Moms meetup on Friday. I am going to have friends over for dinner and go to BOOTIE on Saturday. I am going to get out of the house and go back to having something approximating the life I had before the double craziness of wedding and pregnancy/baby hit ALL AT ONCE last year. And, most importantly, I don’t have to go back to work for eight more weeks, so I have a lot of time in which to visit my friends, meet other new moms, and spend time bonding with my new baby boy.

It feels so good to be able to make plans, and to know I have the energy to actually do things again. I’m so happy about that.

I think I might be able to sleep now, as well. One last load of Ben laundry, and one last mug of herbal Mother’s Milk tea (to increase production – I can barely keep up), and then I can wake up my little piglet for a feeding before I fall asleep myself. And sleep right now, especially snuggled up to my husband and baby, is sheer bliss.

all caught up on TV

This last week, I watched all of Mad Men, Season One. Paul set a TiVO season pass for the marathon last weekend, and I adore it. The show is sheer genius. I get a kick out of the agency talk – I did, after all, work for DDB for a year – and I am always amazed by how perfect the period settings are, down to the last item of decor, or the clothing on the housewives, or the volume of cigarettes smoked. But mostly, I’m addicted to the depth of the characters and the storylines. It’s a brilliant show, and even I, with my short attention span, was hooked for all thirteen Season One episodes inside of three days.

I also managed to download the CBC’s jPod from the iTunes store. I couldn’t stream full episodes from the CBC website because of my US based IP address, and it was too late in the season to hijack Dad’s TiVO into a Season Pass using the TiVO website. But I DID manage to use a Canadian credit card to buy the whole season for download on iTunes. And even with CBC budgets (it looks like they spent about $20 per episode), I’m happy with the adaptation, and Paul and I are both totally into the show. The storylines and characters that were added beyond the original book fit in. And, of course, I love seeing a show that is just so Vancouver. Reading Coupland’s books always makes me feel like I’m back in BC, and watching jPod gives me the same sense of being back home. I miss Vancouver, a lot, so seeing a scene shot in Stanley Park, or stock footage of Coal Harbour or even just the quality of the light in the background, filtered through all those clouds and trees, makes me happy.

I’m going to run to the grocery store now. Supplies need to be picked up for the coming week, while I have Paul to watch Ben. Time to hit Trader Joe’s.

more video clips of baby Ben

go to hell, united healthcare!!

Once again, United Healthcare has denied all claims from my obstetrician.

This, DESPITE having sent me a letter saying EXPLICITLY that they would pay for these claims.

I’m sure they’ll pay the claims eventually, but in the meantime, I have to:

a) waste my time tracking down someone to fix this at UHC
b) call my OB’s office to explain what happened & let them know payment will be 30 days late

My OB’s office is already sending me past due notices from claims that UHC promised me they had paid on June 27th. Two and a half months after my transition of care was approved & made effective, and the clinic I went to hasn’t received a single dime from United.

United Healthcare are clearly trying to wear me down & nickel and dime me into letting them slide on several hundred dollars of charges. As if. I’ve got all summer to sit here, with a chuntering baby on my lap if necessary, calling them daily & having the HR department at my office followup again if I have to. This is simply getting ridiculous in the amount of time I have spent chasing them and reminding them that they promised to pay for my pregnancy.

a few particularly adorable photos

Matching father & son Sonic Youth shirts (thanks Rachel!!)

Matching father & son Sonic Youth shirts (thanks Rachel!!)

We can't stop here - this is bat country

We can’t stop here – this is bat country

Jon Stewart for President, 2008!
Ben votes for Jon Stewart for President, 2008!

another baby photo montage

an update to the brooks brothers fiasco

1. The Consumerist also posted about the mystery catalog on Sunday. Check out Ben’s fleeting fame at:

2. Brooks Brothers contacted me Monday, and insisted that they did receive a catalog request through the website – but won’t release the IP address of the form filler outer. Y’know, at MY company, we ALWAYS release the IP address when a customer asks for it, but whatevs. So we will never know who filled out the form – or how they got Ben’s info. Won’t someone think of the children?

3. I hear chuntering from the vibrating chair. Must go feed beastie.

a respite from the chuntering

Ben starts his waking up process with a complaining sort of noise: a few squeaks at first, then the usual baby sort of “eh, eh, eh,” noise that they all make before they start crying. My mom told me that my dad referred to this as “chuntering” when I started those noises as a baby. After some quick research, I found that it is an actual real word, and not just one of Dad’s Cumberland dialect terms. It means complaining or grumbling – the Yiddish equivalent is “kvetch”.

Right now, Ben is asleep, and not chuntering. Or crying. Or wailing. We took him for a walk earlier, and now he is unconscious. It’s great. I’m planning to leave him in his car seat (which fits into the stroller) to nap so I can get some sleep. As much as I love him, a newborn baby can really be a total jerk at times. Not on purpose, obviously. But when you’re trying to get him to settle down and take a nap, after six hours of nonstop feeding or rocking or burping, it feels like he’s being a jerk.

Dammit. I hear sqeaks that may lead to chuntering. Time to go look in on my son.

how the hell did my baby boy request a catalog already?

Brooks Brothers sent a catalog and letter to fufill Ben’s request for said information today.

The question is – how did they get a catalog request from a three week old infant?

The mailing label and letter behind the cut.

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