Friday, October 31, 2008

BPA & Bottled Water = BAD

Steve and I have been advocates for drinking tap water for quite some time.  Why?  Tap water is regulated and good for you, and, we have a very hard time thinking about how many  plastic bottles previously containing "water"  end up in landfill.  Last year while visiting Paris and Amsterdam there was a noticeable movement in restaurants toward tap water,  presented in a glass decanter, rather than selling a bottle of water.  The production of plastic bottles to carry "filtered" or "remineralized tap water" last year alone used 17 million barrels of oil, produced 2.5 million tons of carbon dioxide and used three times the amount of water used to fill each bottle. Shocking hunh?  Especially given that we live in a country where clean water is accessible everywhere.   

The next big dilemma presents itself in the form of what type of reusable container we should be putting our tap water into.  Everyone has heard that Plastic Number 7 is BAD.  It's a hard clear plastic found in many reusable containers, from what I have read, it's a catchall number meaning the #7 plastic is made from several types of plastics some of which contain BPA and some of which do not. Still how are you to know?  

BPA is a synthetic sex hormone similar to estrogen which is used to harden plastics, however, it has been known to leak into the container's contents.  Scientists studying BPA in animal research have found it can cause various health problems including cancer, diabetes, hyperactivity, obesity and early onset of puberty.   

So we play safe and rule it out altogether which is what the FDA in Canada has done declaring BPA a TOXIN. YAY CANADA! 

With Baby P on the way I have begun to really look for  BPA free bottles, sippy cups, utensils, pacifiers and toys.  While it will  be fine if Baby P lives a lifetime singing show tunes I really don't want to be buying Baby P's first training bra at age six, or carpooling to chemo treatments instead of hockey practice,  if I can help prevent it.

So what can you do? 

If you are heading out for the  day, pack a bottle of water to take along. There are a number of great BPA or Bispenol-A FREE reusable stainless steel bottles on the market specifically made for toting water. Companies like Klean Kanteen,and Siggjust to name two brands who have taken the lead on the market in eco friendly reusable containers for kids and adults.

For baby items look for the BPA FREE logo in the packaging.  I recently bought a set of spoons made by Munchkin who had a big BPA free symbol on the front of the package. Although,  not all of thier products are BPA free. Careful consideration is still at the buyers discretion.  Other great companies making BPA Free products like bottles, sippy cups and pacifiers for babies are Born Free,  AVENT, Evenflo glass bottles, Dr.Brown's glass bottles, thinkbaby, Nuby and Sassy MAM.

We all have a choice. 

Thursday, October 30, 2008

3 Birds in 6 Months Flew into Our House ... A Wive's Tale or Truth?

The bird is in the left corner of the window behind the bamboo.

This spring I had the back door propped open while I hauled a couple of new wicker chairs and a club chair into the house from the back of a rented  pick up truck parked in the drive way.  I was so excited about the furniture's arrival I began running around inside the house snapping photographs of our new house WITH furniture to send home to my aunts.  

On a photography roll I headed out the front door snapping photos all around the exterior until I came to the back of the house only to discover I had left the back door propped open.  Duh. Oh well no harm I thought - it's not bug season quite yet. 

Looking through my lens framing another shot I see something dart past the kitchen window - ON THE INSIDE.  What the hell was that?

I head for the kitchen with Cecil our three pound Yorkie on my heels, closing the back door behind me.  There in the kitchen are not one but two birds!  One male and one female. The female flies toward the side kitchen window while the male takes off through the dining room toward the front of the house.  Cecil is losing his mind barking at the bird in the kitchen window, who is by now completely terrified and repeatedly slamming itself against the glass looking for an exit.  I take off in search of the male bird.  I find it perched on our computer monitor in the office.  I close the two glass doors to the office keeping it contained while I head back to try to save the female.

Since we had just recently moved in I had a few rather large boxes left unpacked standing in the corner of the room off the back entrance - I placed Cecil up on this box knowing he can't get down so I can try to catch the kitchen bird. (I then totally forgot Cecil on top of the box)  But first - I have to take the bird's  picture!

Eventually I throw a towel over each of the birds releasing out the back door to freedom.  I then have to retrace the bird's steps and clean up the guano left behind. I now under stand the saying "scare the shit out of me" as it pertains to birds.

I retold this story to my aunts who both told me "It's good luck to have a bird fly into your home - especially if it leaves a dropping!"    Okay I'll take the luck.

Last night the weather was dipping to the freezing point  so I decided I had better bring in my plants from the front porch.  I was worried that if we did get frost the plants would suffer.  In came all the tropicals in terracotta pots and then I decided I would bring in my hanging Boston Ferns.  I unhook the first one, turn on my heel to step just inside the front door, when something comes flying so quickly out of the fern and into the darkness of the house.  Ah!  What the hell was that? A bat?A giant bug? Too small for a bird. I place the fern on the door mat and turn around to get the other one.  This time I tap the base of the pot making a little noise and giving it a push - out comes another flying object - it graces my head and I scream. It's so fast and so small I have no idea what it was!

I decide I am not taking in the Boston Ferns and put the other one back outside.  Of course I have to tell Steve this story as we proceed to walk all around the house turning on lights and shaking curtains trying to startle whatever it was back out.  Nothing.  We found nothing.

A good hour later Steve heads off to the main floor powder room when I hear him call me.  Hey hon, I found your bat slash bug!  Come see.  

There on the chair rail in the powder room is a tiny fluffy black bird.  It's so pretty with spots on it's head and a long pointed beak like a humming bird.  Once again the dog is removed from the scene,  a towel is thrown, and the bird is released back outside.   This little bird was a winter wren who like to make nests in grass like areas...hence the Boston Fern.  Of course we had to consult our bird book ... we are nerds.

So this whole  "if a bird in flies in through a home's open door or window good luck wives tale" has me curious.  I decided to look into it a little further.  This is what I found out on Yahoo Answers:

It's a very old piece of folklore dating back to ancient times.

The ancient Greeks, Romans and Egyptians all represent the soul as a bird.  In paintings of death the bird is seen flying from the body. The reverse is also true, the appearance of a bird brings new life. The most common modern folklore reflecting this is the  popular image of the stork delivering the baby to the house!

So if this happened with one bird I might pass it off as coincidental ... but ... we have had THREE!

3 Birds = 3 Babies (in our family!)
Steve & I are  due April 10, 2009
Steve's sister Dawn due May 3, 2009
Steve's sister Jen due June 13, 2009.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Baby P's First Gift

The mail man came to deliver this tiny box to the door post marked to Steve and I.  When we opened it we realized the gift was for Baby P as none of the clothes would fit us!  Kidding.  

Auntie Lucky sent Baby P (his or her) very first H&M Green Flower cotton outfits in such beautiful colours, a foot jingle and Baby's first teddy bear...and the cutest socks I have ever seen! 

The clothes are newborn size...Steve was holding them up commenting on how tiny the pants are and I had a sudden realization that no matter how tiny the pants are someone big enough to wear them is going to  exit this body......YIKES!

Thanks Lucky we love them! 

Triple Screening

Today I have to pop into the Lab at my OB office to have some blood drawn for the "Triple Screening Tests." A triple screen is a blood test that measures three things called alpha-fetoprotein, human chorionic gonadotropin and unconjugated estriol. These are tests to look into whether or not the baby is at an elevated risk of a neural tube disorder or Down Syndrome. It's highly  suggested for women 35 years of age and over to take this test. It's pretty standard in North America.

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Telling Family & Friends

We decided to tell our immediate family about Baby P after we had our "Confirmation Ultrasound at 9 weeks" and then elected to sit on the news until we were safely in the second trimester at 14 weeks to announce our news to extended family and friends.

Family Quotes:

Steve's Dad and his wife Kelly (Pepe & Meme) in Person:
"We are very happy and of course we will keep your news to ourselves. This is your news to share with Grandma (Mae) when you are ready."

Steve's Mother (Grandma Linda) in Person:
"Really! Well that's going to be an easy Due date to remember! How are you feeling? This is exciting!"
(Steve's two sister's due dates for their first babies were April 10th as well - neat hunh?)

My Dad (Grampy) By Speaker Phone:
" Really? Go On?! Well I never thought I would hear that from you two!"

My Seester By Phone:
"I am going to be an Auntie?! Really?!!!! A "real" Auntie!!!!" ( She said this over and over with increasing volume )

Steve's Seester Jennie in Person::
" Really? But I asked you earlier and you said no? Wait, you were drinking a coffee! Are you joking?"

Steve's Seester Dawn in Person:
"Yeah, I know. Jennie can't lie!"

Greg in Person:
"Really? You are gonna be a great mom. You are gonna be so fat, fatter than you have ever been."

Kathy in Person:
"No, I don't believe you. I was just asking Greg on the way here if you two were gonna have kids and he said probably not! Okay don't tell Greg let's see if he can figure it out."

Renee by Phone:
"Nooo really? How long have you known? I can't believe our babies are gonna be so close in age!  Who knows? Who can I tell? Jeff,  Shipley &  Steve are pregnant! When are you gonna tell Trish?"

Kelly by Email then Phone:
"Betch! As if you just email me that ultrasound pic and don't even call me? Am I the last person to know?"

Lucky By ichat:
"Ohmigawd I am so happy. I am turning into my Aunt who cried at everything. You have to share every bit of this with me."

Ann By Phone:
"Oh yeah, were you pregnant when you were home? Are you feeling okay?"

Aunt Dianne By Phone:
"That's wonderful! Do you have any names picked out yet?"

And we would really like to have the first hand quotes from the following people to add here BUT we were not given the opportunity to share our news because SOMEONE did it for us. So the rest of the "ANNOUNCEMENT" ran the gossip lines over the's actually quite funny to us, that all these people called each other for confirmation, and, not once did our telephone ring!

David called Grandma Mae to tell her that " fill in the blank" called him and told him Steve and Michelle are expecting a baby. Grandma Mae called Jennie to ask if this is true. Jennie can't lie (see Dawn's quote above) especially to Grandma. Jennie called me & Steve to tell us the telephone gossip - and there you have it. We can expect that the rest of the family knows now too.

The only reason we wanted to wait until we were firmly in the second trimester to announce was because we didn't want to run the risk of upsetting a whole pile of people should this pregnancy fail. Reasonable? We thought so.

And Then There Were Three

August 4, 2008

A normal morning - Steve was on the couch watching a movie and I was in the office setting up a dentist appointment and my first mammogram - just to determine a baseline for future tests my OB recommended. Apparently they do this yearly with all women beginning at age 35 who have an immediate family history of breast cancer. What a legacy - thanks mom! Incidentally this date was also my mother's birthday (she died December 12, 2000) how fitting today to be making an appointment to have my boobs squished I thought.

I headed upstairs to have a shower and for some reason decided I would try a pregnancy test. Clear Blue Digital. It did not have enough letters to say NOT PREGNANT as it has shown me a few times before the the previous months. It read PREGNANT. Immediately. There were no need for taking multiple tests. I went back down stairs and handed Steve the stick and said. "Uh-Oh I drank a bottle of wine last night." Then headed back upstairs to shower. Steve came upstairs a short while later and said "Hun this is great! And by the way don't worry about the wine I looked it up and it's fine - but- no more."

After Steve the first person I said "I am pregnant" out loud to was the woman who had just an hour before booked my mammogram appointment to tell her I was pregnant and ask if it was safe to have the mammogram. "Congratulations" she enthused - I'll cancel your appointment - please let your OB know why we are returning your referral. Sweet - I am out of the mammogram...but now I am gonna give birth......

In the next few days I set about finishing the paint (it's nontoxic) on the interior walls of my house. I still had the powder room, yoga studio, and back entrance to finish up. I was grateful for the distraction. I am positive many women have funny stories to tell about all the things they did while pregnant before they knew they were pregnant. Mine will include sailing our first regatta (with unexplicably swollen hands and feet -a sign of pregnancy I have since discovered), deep sea fishing, almost playing paint ball in 100 degree weather, stripping wall paper and painting seven rooms in our home all in a matter of 15 days. Look out Baby P - you have one set of overachieving parents.

August 25, 2008

Steve ad I went to the OB to have a confirmation of pregnancy test. They do this at 8 weeks - I was actually 8 weeks and 6 days on this date. Considering I have never missed my lady days, was eating 17 times a day, I had outgrown my bra, had super sensory sense of smell, had wicked headaches and occasional nausea I still wanted scientific proof of a baby.

Steve joined me for the ultrasound which was internal - yeah- not expecting that. Of course Steve was not phased at all. We both looked up at the TV monitor...then we saw it. Steve squeezed my hand. I said, "There's the little trouble maker!" We all laughed. It's heart beat was 170 beats per minute. Which is supposedly perfect and healthy.

It's all for real now. This our little is Baby P. Due April 10, 2009

BBP=Before Baby P

I was recently gifted with a "Maternity Journal." Since I journal everything and have for my lifetime in various ways, I really can't think of a better gift. The coolest thing is that when the journal is done I get to pass it along to Baby P - when Baby is grown. Thanks Kel!

This is an excerpt from the 1st Journal Entry back dated BBP = Before Baby P.

August 2 & 3, 2008

We had an eventful weekend. Saturday was to be a giant paintball game with Steve's coworkers followed by a BBQ at our house - but- it was 98 degrees so - thankfully it was cancelled. I was afraid of pulling on coveralls, gloves and a full face mask in this heat...but to be honest the recollection of welts incurred on my body from the last time I played was scaring me more than heat stroke! Steve and I went for a casual sail and anchored out to do a bit of crabbing. A whole school of porpoise swam by -which is a very cool sight anytime, but, quite a rarity on our river which is a mix of salt & fresh water. Steve took a picture of me & a crab - I told him to erase it - I looked so fat! Upon arriving home - I dipped into a bottle of Midol.

Sunday morning the alarm went off at 4:30 AM - we headed to meet a friend of Steve's to go off shore fishing in Morehead City for the day. The water was rough - we spent a good 4 hours slamming up and down - Steve's friend laughed at me because in all the thrashing around on the boat - I fell asleep sitting up- while trolling. Today we caught a handful of small Spanish Mackerel and a 2ft MAKO Shark!?

Arriving home Steve set about making Ceviche with the Mackerel and I proceed to open a bottle of wine. "Just giving you a heads up - I am a little over due for my lady days." I am pretty sure I am speaking aloud to myself more than to Steve. He smiles at me and refills my wine glass.

P.S My boobs are huge. The Midol worked everywhere but there. Hmm...

This Ship has a baby on board...NOW WHAT?


Our lives have been changed for 16 weeks now.

Settling nicely into the second trimester and finally unable to hide my newly and ever expanding pot-belly we (Steve, baby and I) are adjusting to the idea of having a little person around.

I figured I would set this blog up to share with our friends, family and anyone else who wants to come along for our journey as we morph from a hedonistic career and travel oriented duo into ...dare I say it..? Parents.