Friday, September 30, 2011

Banana fana fo Fudson

I consider it a near miracle that Alex and I were ever able to settle on a name for our baby boy. Alex and I are on the same page when it comes to a lot of things, but baby names isn't one of them. Alex's criteria for a successful baby boy name were:

Any name with the letters X, Y, or Z in it.
Anything uber modern.
Any name that conjures up the image of motorcycles, weaponry, or anything medieval sounding.
Possibly Hispanic.

My criteria were:
Any name that looked "neat" when I wrote it in lower case letters.
Anything old fashioned or classic.
Any name associated with my favorite artists, poets, musicians, or family members.
Possibly French.

As you can see we're talking two completely different books, people!!! We found that naming this baby allowed us to really hone in on our compromising, and sales skills and taught us how to gently let the other down-the names he loved, I hated! The names I loved, he hated. It seemed we would never agree! Being the obsessive planner that I am, I pretty much wanted the name picked out "like yesterday". Alex on the other hand, being the laid back, last minute sorta guy that he is was fine if we named him in the hospital! I pictured us in the hospital, our beautiful boy having just been born and Doctor Fern and a slew of nurses asking "whats his name?"...and the sound of crickets chirping as Alex and I shrugged, giving each other "Uh-Ohhh" looks. It would surely start our parenting careers on a really bad foot if we hadn't prepared the NAME of all things! He reminded me to calm down...that scenario wouldn't happen...we had 20 more weeks to figure it out. Well, I don't know if you've tried to reason with a crazy nesting preggo before, but lets just say that calming down wasn't exactly possible for me. Sooo I started making lists in Excel spreadsheets. I edited lists, added and subtracted and started all over, lists of names, lists of meanings, lists of monograms, LISTS!!! Our final list of possible names for the little Herbster were...


At first we were sure it would be either Enzo or Mateo...but when we excitedly shared these names with our peeps, the most common reaction we received was a rather unenthusiastic, "oh". If I had a word of advice for new preggos out would be "DO NOT tell people your name snotty as it may seem, decide with your baby-daddy alone and wait until you're 100% before announcing it." We had second thoughts after sharing and I kept envisioning people making that disapproving face when I introduced my son Enzo, or Mateo...looking back it was pretty stupid to think that...after all, "A rose by any other name"...right?! At that point I decided to talk Alex into the name Hudson (which wasn't his favorite) using my persuasion and reverse psychology (shhhh) skills. ;)

The name Hudson came to me while visiting my sweet old Grandpa Bill (the most amazing story teller I know and the reason you see the name William above). After my Dad's memorial service we were reminiscing while looking through my Dad's shop when Grandpa found an old b&w picture of the family in front of their Hudson car. He started to tell Alan and I the story about the car and how he just LOVED Hudson cars and how they owned about 20 different ones and how they drove my dad as a baby in one...and when I think of the name Hudson I will always think of that moment, bonding with my grandparents.

(I'm pretty sure Grandpa said one of their first Hudson's was a dark green 1948 Commodore...)

How pretty is that? It was a perfect combination of Alex's wish for something masculine and engine related, and my desire for something old fashioned and sentimental. It also passed the "Not-Easy-To-Make-Fun-of-Even-Though-Who-Knows-Because-Kids-are-Cruel Test", the Banana-Fo-Fana-Test", and "Possible-to-have-a-Cutie-Pie-Nickname-Test", (Huddy Buddy, Hudsy, Hud Stud, among others). Anywhooo after a lot of convincing on my part, Alex agreed to Hudson as the first name if Ramon were his middle name (which of course I was totally down with because of the band The Ramones-though I didn't win the battle of keeping the letter "e" at the end). Alex and his dad share the middle name Ramon...perfect to carry on the tradition!!! I was finally able to breathe a sigh of relief around week 25...and picture my sweet Huddy Buddy Pumpkin Lumpkin Wumpkin Pootsie Pie! ;) Kidding...but don't put it past me to go a bit overboard with the terms of endearment, kisses, and snuggles at first for the rest of his life! Ha!

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Thrifty Thursday & Uterus Update.

Over the last 2 years I have become completely OBSESSED with saving money. So much so that I fear I’ve become a borderline cheapskate... I have a really hard time spending money on things I never used to think twice about (anything new and anything not completely necessary). I literally cringe when I think about buying my groceries at Freddies, Albertsons or Safeway…and “fuh-geda-bout” Huckleberries ya'll!!! A dream day for me would (among other things) involve watching our savings account balance grow…I get more excited than any normal person should about transferring funds into savings…PARTY ON WAYNE!!! As lame as it sounds, I’m really proud of our new-found inner thriftiness. The word BUDGET never existed to Alex and I until we were forced to penny-pinch after he was laid off for over 2 years. And savings??? Umm, what savings??? Save, SHMAVE! Carpe DIEM, people! Really it was more like CARPE diem the item I want to buy…now, now, now! The holes in our pants pockets were still smoldering from the money we had just blown on a singing, dancing, bass fish to hang above the fireplace…welllll, we just HAD to have it! TOTALLY KIDDING, but what I’m not kidding about is how great it feels finding new ways to save your hard earned dollhairs, people!!! The topic of this Thrifty Thursday is one of my favorite things to save money on: CLEANING PRODUCTS!!!

Let me tell you why our piggy bank is more fat and our cleaning supply cupboard is so much roomier these days! Our cleaning supply arsenal used to consist of pretty much one of everything down the cleaning products aisle: Pledge, Windex, Mr. Clean Floor Cleaner, wood floor shiner, Comet, anti-bacterial kitchen and bath spray, Soft Scrub, Scrubbing Bubbles, dryer sheets, bleach, dishwashing soap, dishwasher detergent, & Tide….and we spent A LOT of money on the lot of it! Then a friend of mine told me about how she only uses vinegar and baking soda to clean her house. My thoughts were as follows:

E1 How sanitary can that be? My scrubbing bubbles are killing 99% of germs while they fizz and foam. If it doesn’t burn your lungs, it can’t possibly be working!

2 Can you even see through your windows anymore without windex??? Dingeville!

3 Your house must smell like Easter egg dye 24/7.

I decided to go home and google it…my friend should probably be advised, by me and my research, as to the benefits of using cleaners with chemicals…after all, they’re in there for a reason! Well friends, for the first millionth time in my life, I was WRONG!! Did you know that white distilled vinegar is 100% pure cleaning magic!!!?? Screw Mr. Clean...he ain't got nothin' on good old fashioned VINEGAR. You can literally use it to clean anything…and you won’t just be making your house all sparkly…you’ll be killing mold, bacteria, and germs in the process; AND I promise you, your house will NOT smell like Dominos hot wings afterwards!

After some pretty intense skepticism from Alex we agreed to say goodbye to the first 9 cleaning products above and HELLO to a monstrous gallon vinegar jug and 13 lb bag of baking soda! I repeat: THAT’S NINE different (expensive) products replaced by TWO (very inexpensive) products…what's NOT to love about this story?! I found out that in addition to saving money on the products themselves, I might also be saving our family from future doctor visits & medical bills…did you know many dryer sheets contain cancer causing chemicals? I stopped buying them altogether and now I just add a little vinegar to the wash as a fabric softener. I'm a sentimental gal to-be-sure, but I really don’t miss the fumes my old cleaning products used to fill our house with…I used to have to step out of the bathroom every couple of minutes when cleaning with Scrubbing Bubbles because of the not-so-delicious aroma. Now, cleaning the shower is as pleasant an experience as cleaning a shower could possibly hope to be…with baking soda (Vinegar's trusty right-hand-man). My shower is as clean with baking soda as it was with Scrubbing Bubbles but now my lungs don’t hurt afterward…hooray for that!!!

If you're interested in saving yourself some bones and your lungs some hurt check out these homemade cleaning product recipes at or check out Better Basics for the Home: Simple Solutions for Less Toxic Living by Annie's at the library=another money saver!!!

In other (baby-related) news, I had my weekly doc appointment today and he said I am about 3 cm dilated and baby has dropped another inch! He said Herbie is right on schedule (aw-punctual little man that he is) for his October 6th due date. I’m happy for him to stay in there the full 40 weeks because I know it’s best for him, as uncomfortable as I may feel…it’s not about me anymore. In the meantime I have been cleaning like a mad woman (hence the reason the above topic has been on my mind these days), painting the bathroom (don’t worry- it’s zero VOC paint), watching any documentaries I can find about Abraham Lincoln (last month I was allll over anything to do with Venice, this month it’s Lincoln-ha), snoozing, and eating too many croissants. Alex has been working to cross off the last of his to-do-before-baby-gets-here-list…and being my saint by helping me get up from the couch, up the stairs, out of the car, offering massages, saying “I’LL DO THAT-YOU’RE NOT DOING THAT” whenever I try to lift anything heavier than a feather, and never commenting about how I complain too much or how much weight I have gained! He is truly a pregnant woman’s best friend! I should probably rent him out to other preggos for profit and then write a book/movie about it...

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

my bump. my bump, my bump, my bump.

my lovely baby bump...check it out.

teensy 19 week bump

22nd week

25 weeks & really showing

29 week old bump bump

week 32; becoming a pro at the infamous pregnancy waddle

36 weeks but feels more like 14 years!

So what's the bump up to these days you ask??

I've been putting that obnoxious 39 week old bump to work as my personal food and beverage shelf...

& book place-holder!

It's also an endless source of entertainment for the both of us watching baby h wiggle and as an artists canvas... as seen above in alexs' self portrait. 9 months is a long time people!!! ;)