Monday, August 24, 2009

Belly Bustin'

So it is a good thing that we are not growing the baby in the garden because he wouldn't be doing very well (see previous blog). Fortunately he is growing in Natalie and doing very well.

Friday August 21, 2009
(We're not sure of the dates of the other pictures, just that there are after June 8th)
He is due October 9th and we still don't have a name for him. Any suggestions? We have been calling him Stitch (as from Lilo and Stitch, the movie)
He is healthy and strong, but he likes hanging out up under my ribs. I am doing really good except I still have my back problems and spend 2/3 of the day having to lay down. I also get winded really easy from somebody pressing on my ribs. I have put on 16 inches around and my belly button is totally sticking out. I even bump it on things.
Unfortunately, he is breach and not showing any inclination to move to where he is supposed to be. Great he is already showing how stubborn he is.
We're really excited, scared to death, and still a little in denial.
Woohoo! Get in and hang on for the ride of our lives!

Square Foot Garden Part Deux

So we figured that we needed to do an update on our Square Foot Garden.
After about a month or so the garden was looking very good and healthy. The snails really seemed to like it and wouldn't stay out of it. So I had to purchase some snail killer which really slowed them down.

In this picture you can see that everything has sprouted and is doing well. You can barely see the 8 (of 18) spinach plants that the snails or grasshoppers have not completely clipped off yet. The lettuce never sprouted.

The bell pepper (front left) is looking healthy and strong. A little after this photo was taken, the top half of it got nearly cut off by some stupid bug that just chewed half way through the stem. It even had 2 tiny little peppers starting to form.

BEHOLD!!! The FRUIT of our labors. This was the first harvest from the garden.

Shortly after we got our first crop (yes the single cherry tomato) the Bakersfield summer decided to arrive. And arrive it did with 108-112 °F temperatures for more than a week straight. It pretty much finished off the peas. The tomatoes were doing ok and had a few more tomatoes on them. The pumpkin and zucchini both looked sick, and the carrots never got more than an inch tall, but the corn seemed to like it. It would put on as much as an inch or more of growth a day. The weather cooled down (100-105 °F) and things looked like they may still have a chance. The zucchini was looking good finally. Then we left to Utah for a baby shower and the temps jumped back up.

The peas all died. The zucchini killed over. The pumpkin gave up the ghost. The bell pepper never came out of its coma. The poblano pepper produced 1 tiny little pepper the size of a silver dollar (if that). The corn has some tiny miniature ears on it (about the size of those little salad sized ones). The cucumbers keep making little cucumber buds that then shrivel up. The cantaloupe is about the same (the ants seem to like farming aphids on it though). All in all we collected about a dozen cherry tomatoes, 4 Park Whopper tomatoes, and 4 snap peas; but boy howdy were they tasty (which they should be at close to $10 a piece). So as you can see from the photo, we can't be held down, and are re-planting peas and zucchini to see if fall gardening works better. We will triumph over nature!!!

Monday, August 10, 2009


I find myself experiencing an interesting phenomenon. I have a condition called Irritable Bowel Syndrome which I have suffered from for a few years. Symptoms range from nausea, vomiting, gas, diarrhea, constipation, acid reflux, hemorrhoids, and yes, it is as fun as it sounds. Before I was diagnosed I could not even talk about bathroom things at all, now I have little qualms about it (sorry to those of you who do).
It took quite some time, a million doctors visits, a pharmacy full of different medicines, and fun medical procedures like stool sample collection, an endoscopy, and a colonoscopy (at 23!). Finally the gastroenterologist said "Well your stomach is irritated and I am not really sure why. So we will say you have Irritable Bowel Syndrome." Apparently when they don't know why your bowels are irritated they say you have "Irritable Bowel Syndrome." Wow! All that medical school to come up with that diagnosis.
I was on a whole lot of medicine including one called Belladonna, which is made from the Deadly nightshade plant. It is actually a poison that is often used to kill people (just in case you were thinking of bumping someone off). You know you are not feeling well when you will take poison to feel better. Eventually I stopped taking all of my medicines since they weren't helping anyway and control my IBS by carefully watching my food. When I did this I finally felt some relief with only the occasional flair up.
While I was trying to get this under control I suffered from some fairly embarrassing experiences including throwing up in front of most of Quin's and my family. The first time Quin's parents came to visit us in our little apartment in Las Vegas, he was giving them the tour and when he got to our bedroom and bathroom he was kind of like "and here is the bathroom and here is Natalie throwing up." I spent most of their trip in the bathroom. Another time Quin's older sister Elena and her family were visiting when another round hit. We only had one bathroom and it was being used. I had to ask my little niece to bring me our bucket. The whole time I was praying that I wouldn't have to throw up in a bucket in front of them. Fortunately I didn't! Another round hit when Quin and I were about to get on a plane to fly from Las Vegas to Idaho. The people on the plane around us could see that I was sick and the lady sitting next to us asked if she could move. The flight attendant thought I had partied too hard in Las Vegas and said as much (probably not an uncommon sight). We informed her that we were from Vegas and that I was just sick. She was really nice after that and gave us some free sodas (this airline charged for drinks). These were just a few of the fun and "character building" incidents I experienced along with many scary public bathrooms and a few close calls by the side of the road.
This however is not the interesting phenomenon that I have experienced it has only lead to the interesting experience. Since I got pregnant my Irritable Bowel Syndrome symptoms have magically been "cured" and replaced by pregnancy symptoms. And if you have ever been pregnant you can identify with me that these symptoms are almost identical to Irritable Bowel Syndrome symptoms. Fortunately they are not as bad as they were before, woohoo! Something good about pregnancy. Anyway I have found myself finding commercials that I previously thought hilarious to be interesting and worth my attention. "Perhaps I should try that product because it might be more gentle on my stomach than other products" and "Why yes, I would like to stop the burning and the itching."
If this has taught me anything it is that I should be careful of which commercials I find hilarious for the wrong reasons, I may need to use that product in the future.