I just took a shower in preperation for bed time and had to slather half a bottle of body lotion on to calm my wintery dry skin.  It’s March 29th.  Shouldn’t “March” be acting a little less lioness and a bit more lamb-like at this point?  I never dreamt I’d still be wearing my winter coat and bundling up just to take Bamba for a walk on March 29th!  So I ask you, will this winter EVER end?

Isn’t it bad enough Snowpocalpse had us under mountains of dirty snow for over 2 months? Isn’t it bad enough, that the aforementioned snow kept me from wearing all my nice winter boots for fear of ruining them?  Isn’t it bad enough that I’ve been pregnant this whole time and haven’t been able to enoy one single Hot Totty?

Admittedly, I spent half of this winter cozy on the couch enjoying my new found food freedom (courtesy of Baby), and the other half dutifully cleaning out closets and re-organizing the apartment to make room for baby.  So I guess, the winter hasn’t been all that bad.  We can certainly say that we’ve accomplished something.  We started our major re-organization project in the kitchen which was probably the most difficult of all the rooms in the apartment because we had to start “living the life we live now”.  (Not the one we aspire to).  C’mon you know what I mean!  Oh, no?  You didn’t read last month’s “de-clutter” issue of O magazine?  Well, in that case, let me tell you: That bitch can sell anything.  Oprah sold me on throwing out stuff that I haven’t touched in a year and on “living the life I live now.” If you saw last week’s episode of “The Middle”, perhaps you get the idea.

In short, Oprah says, “Stop holding on to things that are not about who you are today.”  Things like (but not limited to): the treadmill you don’t use, the guitar you don’t play, the clothes you don’t wear, and the cooking stuff that just gathers dust while you order takeout.

Take a second and really think about the stuff (or shit, depends on your mood) that is taking up space in your home.  Mentally go through all the rooms, one by one, first the obvious ones, and then places like the closets, the garage, the storage unit, the storage unit you have at your mother’s house – all of it.  Can you identify at least 20% of crap you can safely say you have not touched or even thought about in the past year?  Throw it out, donate it to charity, leave it on your curb for someone else.  Just do it.  We did, and I have to say, I feel so much lighter and happier.  I wake up every morning with less clutter on my mind and in my heart.  It’s such a better to wake up and start your day, I promise.

Plus, you come to terms with who you are right now instead of always thinking about who we want to be. Let’s just be who we ARE and that will make us the happiest of all.

So, where did we net out?  Oreos are still in our cabinets, and healthy shakes have been thrown out.  But we also made space for all our lovely kitchen stuff that we’d like to use more often (if only we could remember where it is!).  Old clothes that don’t fit were donated and work out gear was safely stowed away for post-baby weight loss actitivities.  The shit in this apartment, is now a much better of picture of who Marie is today then it ever has been.  And knowing that, has made me calm and settled in a way I haven’t felt before.  Now that that’s outta the way, I can start thinking about the future.

 

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Yes, you read that right. I’m not fat, I’m pregnant. But, no, you’re not an asshole. Oh gosh, where do I even start? I know that it’s been far too long since this blog has seen any action and for that I sincerely apologize. As many of you know, I really only write when I have a well thought out message for a blog post. No one, including me, wants to read about every banal detail of my everyday life – so I try to skip that and just write about the really good details and things that I feel are worth sharing. I’m sad to admit, I haven’t had any well thought out messages for you in a REALLY long time.

This blog post has been brewing in my head for a while, but for some reason, it took a brand new iPad 2 to get me writing again. Friday night at midnight, Ran and I went to the Apple Store for the third time that day to see if the line had decreased enough for us to actually stomach it. By midnight, it had and so, in we went for some retail therapy of the Apple variety. I had been thinking about getting a iPad for a while, but was convinced that there was really no reason for it. I have an iPod, an iPhone, a desktop and work laptop. Plus, Ran has an iPad, iPhone, iPod and a macbook. Seriously, we should buy stock in Apple. So basically, there’s absolutely no need for ANOTHER iPad in the house. Except that my desktop is 4 years old and super slow. It’s not used for much except the occasional web surf and to update my iTunes. After some consideration and notification that my tax return this year would be VERY generous, I decided to get the iPad to use as a computer rather then getting a new computer. The desktop will still have a home on my desk – because I can’t bear to part with the only PC left in the house. Old habits die hard, I guess. (You’re welcome Bill Gates)

Happy to report, that I am writing this blog post with my iPad 2 (in it’s snazzy docking station with the wireless keyboard connected -Hell, I have to make this feel like a desk top experience and I can’t figure out how to type on the iPad without going crazy).

I’m also home alone tonight. Well not entirely alone. Ran is out for the night and I’m sitting here with our little dog Bamba. I can’t help but notice that as Bamba came into our lives this summer I stopped writing. We decided to get a dog pretty quickly. Ran was talking about it for years and I had been saying “Imagine?” every time he brought it up. (That was my *nice* way of saying “Not a chance in hell”). But as soon as we saw our friend Manuela’s puppy Lola, I started to think “Maybe I could be a dog owner.” Lola is a toy poodle and was just 8 weeks old. She was so tiny and the sweetest apricot color. She’s hypoallergenic and was just so darn cute! After a weekend spent on the Brooklyn shore talking non-stop about puppies, Ran and I were in touch with the dog-breeder who sold Manuela Lola asking about Lola’s sister, Zoe. I wasn’t truly convinced about getting a dog until I saw a picture of little Zoe. I remember seeing it on my computer screen at work and thinking, “She looks sad like me, I will give her a happy home.” From that moment, I knew “That was MY dog.” We picked her up about a week later and changed her name from Zoe to “Bamba”. The name “Bamba” may sound familiar as I’ve mentioned the snack “Bamba” in the blog before. Bamba is a snack from Israel that looks like a cheese doodle but is actually peanut butter flavored. When Bamba was a newborn puppy, she was kinda peanut butter colored and I just always liked the name Bamba for a dog. I also always liked dogs with food names: Waffle, Applejack, Muffin, and Oreo – for example. I have to admit, I selfishly thought getting a dog would be good for us as it would force us to walk it and get a little exercise. More on that epic fail later.

It’s St. Patty’s Day, a perfectly lovely Thursday night, and I’m home alone with the dog and a fridge full of food. Normally, this would be a torture test. But now that I’m pregnant (remember that from the first paragraph?) I can kinda eat more than I’m used to. In fact, I’m actually eating for 2 – really! So I can nearly eat “as much as I want.” Sounds pretty great right? Of course, being pregnant is a lot more complex than “eating like a Gavoon” (Italian slang world for slob). But being able to eat is one of the great things you can do when you can’t drink, skydive or have Diet Coke. And to make sure my baby is nourished, I’m eating! I’m not counting points and I’m not really beating myself up over my food choices. However, I am trying to eat “real food” and I’m staying away from fast foods at all costs. The one thing I can report, is that my baby craves chocolate EVERY DAY. I like chocolate every now and then, but I swear, now I want Oreos ALL the time. Oreos, Entenmann’s chocolate donuts, Cadbury Creme Eggs, Jell-O chocolate mousse, M&Ms. You name it, I’ve eaten it in the last 19 weeks.

Tomorrow marks the beginning of my 20th week of pregnancy and finally – I look like a pregnant woman. For the first 17 weeks or so, I just looked fat. Good ol’ chubby Marie. And I was eating like a Gavoon! Before everyone knew I was pregnant, they must have thought “Geez Marie is eating non-stop and really letting herself go!” Thinking that, was definitely not helping my self-esteem. I wanted to have a button on that said, “I’m not fat, I’m pregnant you asshole!” To let people know EXACTLY what was going on in my mind. Here’s the thing. I’ve been fat, I know what that feels like and I wasn’t exactly thrilled that people were thinking I was going back to that place. I can write page after page about how overweight/obese people are passed up for promotions at work, made fun of, and thought of as stupid and lazy all based on the amount of weight they carry. None of us want to admit that this is the state of things, but IT IS the state of things. And I have to admit the truth, I didn’t want to be included in that group.

Here’s the other nasty confession I have to make. This summer when I was “taking the summer off” I was actually “putting the pounds back on”. A summer of lazing by the beach and eating off the Ravioli fair truck at Seagate was making my bathing suits give me a wedgee. Around the beginning of October, Ran and I both were feeling disgusting realizing that our fall wardrobe was not fitting the same as last year. We took matters into our own hands and embarked on South Beach Diet phase 1 for 2 whole weeks. We ate crustless egg quiches and grilled chicken breasts. We nibbled on string cheese and baggies of pistachios. We had NO sweets, except for the occasional mound of ricotta cheese flavored with almond extract (Ran was not a big fan). We were even forced to go out to dinner a few times during those 2 weeks and we NEVER cheated. I have to say, we did really really great on this thing. I lost about 7 pounds and Ran 9. We really felt great. What do you think happened next?

Choose your own adventure – Affair with Cheese style. Marie and Ran went off the South Beach diet phase 1 and tried(!) to keep the pounds off. I was motivated, but Ran was pretty much over it. He was glad he lost the weight, but not really interested in continuing the journey. Pizza crept its way back into our life, so did Oreos and cheese on bread. I know (though I didn’t have the guts to weight myself) that the pounds were coming back. By the time I realized that, I also realized I was pregnant and any thoughts of dieting went out the window.

Luckily for us, our conception journey was very easy and happened about as quick as it can happen. Truly a blessing.

From the day I discovered I was expecting till about 5 weeks ago, I was a mess. I was morning sick all friggin day and my only refuge was when I was sleeping. Which, let me tell you, I wanted to do ALL the time. I was a zombie when I’d come home from work. In fact, I could barely get myself to work. It was a foggy 10 weeks or so. I was distracted, worried, excited, scared, tired, hungry, sick to my stomach and wondering if I could really handle this whole thing. Those were some intense emotions which would normally send me into a bit of an eating tail-spin (except for the nausea). Now that I’m out of the woods with all the morning sickness, I really have to watch what I’m eating. I need to truly be eating the way our bodies are meant to: Fruit and Vegetables with a bit of dairy/meat/carbs on the side. This is a hard thing to do. I’m Italian, we think a slice of pizza with mushrooms on top is a balanced meal. The challenge is on. I’m doing my best to snack on nuts, baby-bel cheese (for portion control), and fruit. I’ve been limiting my egg and cheese breakfast to 1x per week. I’m putting blueberries on my yogurt and granola in the morning. I’m trying, I swear.

I also haven’t asked or let the doctor tell me how much I’ve gained. I mean, is that the most important thing right now? I told the doctor, if there’s a problem – tell me. If there isn’t – don’t tell me. It’s not worth the headache. I need to be healthy now not counting every .2 on the scale. Keep your fingers crossed for me that this strategy doesn’t come back to bite me in the butt later on.

For now, I will focus on the journey of the next 20 weeks. In that short amount of time, we will finally get to meet our baby and I know she/he won’t think I’m fat. At least not for the first few years.

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