Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Book Review "Deadly Choices: How the Anti-Vaccine Movement Threatens Us All" by Paul A. Offit

Deadly Choices: How the Anti-Vaccine Movement Threatens Us AllDeadly Choices: How the Anti-Vaccine Movement Threatens Us All by Paul A. Offit

My rating: 5 of 5 stars


This was a fascinating and horrifying read. It addressed the history of vaccines, as well as the anti-vaccine movement, which started very shortly after the first vaccine (for smallpox, via cowpox) was developed. The amount of misinformation in the world that is used by anti-vaccine activists is truly saddening. Having taken a fair amount of immunology coursework in my educational path to my two degrees, I felt that I was well prepared to read this book; however, the book is written in such a way that even someone with no scientific background whatsoever can benefit from the information therein. I cannot recommend this book highly enough. If you have children, you should read it. Maybe it won't change the mind of anti-vaccine parents, but it will at least clarify some things for most people. I was also pleased to note that the last 50 or so pages of text are all references. The only thing I wasn't so keen on was the depiction of chiropractors; I feel that the author should have drawn a better distinction between chiropractors who believe that there are no germs and that everything wrong with your body can be fixed by an adjustment and those who believe that having a properly aligned back can help you live a pain free, and therefore healthier life. In the grand scheme of things, though, that doesn't really matter.



Overall, this book is amazing. I had no idea the extent of the anti-vaccine movement (although at least 2 of my sisters and possibly my older brother as well have not vaccinated their children, and my youngest brother is not vaccinated either) and the misconceptions spread by its members until I read this book. I only knew that people claimed that thimerosal caused autism (very, very well refuted by multiple studies). I didn't know that going back to my own childhood there were claims that vaccines caused mental and physical disabilities.



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Monday, March 28, 2011

35 weeks!


I have no idea about the line through the picture...weird. Also, I remember this sweater being much longer!
How Far along: 35 weeks, 4 days

Baby size: About 6 pounds, assuming she's gaining about 1/2 pound a week (or an ounce a day, per my ticker).

Total weight gain: 18 pounds, depending on the day.

Maternity clothes: Yep.  

Sleep: I miss good, sound, painless sleep. I am always sleepy at this point, due to not sleeping well and having to get up at least once a night to pee and for heartburn.

Best Moment this week: My book club friends had a little shower type thing for me on Friday night, it was awesome and so very sweet! Also, J came and napped with me on Saturday; I haven't actually gotten to sleep with my boy since he was a baby.

Movement: Yeah, although she's definitely run out of room so her movements are either uncomfortable or painful most of the time. 

Gender: GIRL!

Labor signs: Still lots of BH contractions, about 95% are mildly painful (a 1 on a scale of 1-10); however, they aren't too frequent and I can stop taking cramp bark when they become frequent in 3 days! Whee!

Belly button: Still in but very small.

Cravings: Nothing particularly new, I guess apple juice.

What I miss: Same as always: bending over, not walking all gimpy because of my sciatica. (Getting adjusted has definitely helped though!) Being able to bend down and stretch my back out. Sleep. Not having to have a pillow between my knees at night. Being able to sit "like a lady" with my legs together. Being able to hold J and snuggle him close on my lap.

Stretch Marks: Yep, although I haven't gotten new ones in a couple weeks.

What is different this time around: Pretty much everything.

What I am looking forward to this week: Ultrasound on Thursday afternoon to see if the placenta moved up. I really, really, really hope it did.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Thoughts on Blue Bell Ice Cream

Apparently it's a big deal, but Blue Bell ice cream is now available in Colorado. Eager to see what the big deal was all about, C went and bought some. It's really nothing special. I honestly think Ben and Jerry's is better. So is Haagen Dazs. Nothing beats Tillamook, of course, but we haven't had that ice cream since we left WA. It really was awesome. *Sigh*
So, in conclusion, Blue Bell is nothing special. Really. Not very exciting. About on par with Breyers, in my opinion, actually.

Nobody gave me anything for me to write this, I just figured I'd put my opinion out there. And if anyone from Tillamook wants to send me some ice cream, that would rock. Really, really, really rock. Like the huckleberry one. Mmm...

Countdown/Countup

I am 35 weeks pregnant today. I have 35 days left until my estimated due date.
I have one week left of taking cramp bark to slow contractions when they become too frequent.
I have two weeks left until L is considered "full term."
I have 3 weeks and 4 days until the same date in my pregnancy that J was born.
L, assuming she has gained about a half pound a week since our last u/s, now weighs about 6 pounds. If she keeps this up, and stays in til 40 weeks, she'll weight about 8 pounds when she's born.
If she comes the same time J did, she'll weigh about 7 1/2 pounds.
I measured my belly this week, just for giggles, since it came up in a poll on the April 2011 moms board. Then I measured my boobs. Turns out that my belly is bigger than my boobs, but only by 2 inches. And my bra is fitting snugly because I'm no longer a 34G. I'm a 36G/34H. Gah. I think I'll be getting a bra extender this weekend...

Monday, March 21, 2011

34 weeks!



How Far along: 34 weeks, 4 days

Baby size: About 5 1/2 pounds, assuming she's gaining 1/2 pound a week.This means she's bigger than my sister was at birth. Wowza. Granted, my sister was eeny teeny, but still.

Total weight gain: +17-18 pounds, depending on the day.

Maternity clothes: Yep.  

Sleep: I miss good, sound, painless sleep. I'd rather sleep than just about anything else.

Best Moment this week: I got to see FireFall in concert on Saturday, they played an awards ceremony and my brother was in the orchestra with them. That was pretty cool. Also my mom's birthday was yesterday, so that was fun. We got to hang out with my brother E and his girlfriend M, whom I really like. I think she's the best one he's had, and I think she might be a little crazy for liking him so much. I did get some good snuggles in with J, too. So I guess the weekend was the best moment?

Movement: Yep, all the time. I need a break sometimes. 

Gender: GIRL!

Labor signs: Still lots of BH contractions, about 90% are mildly painful (a 1 on a scale of 1-10)

Belly button: Still in but very small.

Cravings: Chocolate, fruit (especially berries), steak. Ribs. Mmmm, meat.

What I miss: Same as last week: bending over, not walking all gimpy because of my sciatica. (Getting adjusted has definitely helped though!) Being able to bend down and stretch my back out. Sleep. Not having to have a pillow between my knees at night. Being able to sit "like a lady" with my legs together. Being able to hold J and snuggle him close on my lap.

Stretch Marks: Yep, although the most recent rash is gone. Whew.

What is different this time around: Pretty much everything.

What I am looking forward to this week: Erm...Being 35 weeks on Thursday, and then the weekend. Every day is closer to full term, and closer to when I can meet my girl and she can stop abusing me.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Monday, March 14, 2011

33 Weeks. OMG.



How Far along: 33 weeks, 4 days

Baby size: About 5 pounds, assuming she's gaining 1/2 pound a week.

Total weight gain: +16-18 pounds, depending on the day.

Maternity clothes: Yep.  

Sleep: I miss good, sound, painless sleep.

Best Moment this week: We had a friend over for dinner, and overall yesterday was very nice. 

Movement: Yep, all the time. 

Gender: GIRL!

Labor signs: Still lots of BH contractions, which are becoming mildly painful.

Belly button: Still in.It's a weird "target" with no stretch marks.

Cravings: Chocolate, sausage (not together, ew), and orange juice.

What I miss: Same as last week: bending over, not walking all gimpy because of my sciatica. Being able to bend down and stretch my back out. Sleep. Not having to have a pillow between my knees at night.Being able to sit "like a lady" with my legs together.

Stretch Marks: Yep, including the new ones that come with a rash.

What is different this time around: Pretty much everything.

What I am looking forward to this week: Um...I have an appointment on Friday.

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Book Review "Vision in White" by Nora Roberts

We read this for March book club. This review contains spoilers.

Vision in White (Bride Quartet, #1)Vision in White by Nora Roberts

My rating: 1 of 5 stars


Oh dear. How Nora Roberts has that many books published is absolutely beyond me. I never, ever, in a million years, would have thought I'd say this, but the Twilight series is better written All I can say is that the story is cute, and if you really, really love wedding planning then this book isn't too bad. The dialog was atrocious- it was like a 50-something woman (not surprising, actually) was trying to mold her own speech patterns to teenagers, when she was trying to write twenty-somethings. And the sex scenes? I don't think I've ever read LESS sexy sex scenes. As soon as you try to describe great sex as "shattering" and say that a man "destroys" a woman with his mouth, well...you get this mess. As my husband put it, when I read him those scenes, he said it was like someone who really hates sex, and finds it very unpleasant and painful, trying to write a good sex scene. I just can't imagine how anyone who has ever had an orgasm could write sex so terribly. Overall, I found the story very contrived and predictable. It was a fast and easy read. When you get to the end, and the protagonist has only just gotten engaged, the title has absolutely no place with the story arc, beyond the obvious "four friends running a wedding agency." I almost want to read one of Roberts' first books to see if she's just gotten bad, or if she was always like this. Almost.



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Wednesday, March 9, 2011

A First

I found my first gray hair a few days ago. On top of my head, right along the part. I pulled it out, because with my big ole belly I couldn't get close enough to the mirror to verify that it was, in fact, a gray hair, and not a freaky pale blond one that I occasionally get. It was actually beautifully white, not gray. Kind of neat. I don't know if it appreciated me ripping it out by the root. I had sort of figured I'd be older than 30 when I started going gray, but whatever. My dad was totally gray by the time he was my age, and by his 60th birthday his hair was snowy white. I'll leave the next one there.

Monday, March 7, 2011

32 weeks!


Is it just me, or is my belly SMALLER this week?

How Far along: 32 weeks, 4 days

Baby size: About 4 1/2 pounds, per our u/s last week and my ticker.

Total weight gain: +15 pounds.

Maternity clothes: Yep.  

Sleep: I really can't get enough, but I am still not sleeping well.

Best Moment this week: Our weekend was packed with fun, including the Denver Art Museum free day, Mardi Gras celebration at a local restaurant where C's jazz combo was playing, shopping and dinner with BIL and his family. Overall, the whole weekend was the best moment of the week ;-).

Movement: Yep, all the time. 

Gender: GIRL!

Labor signs: Still lots of BH contractions.

Belly button: It's kind of getting smaller but still in.

Cravings: Gooey brownies with ice cream, fresh orange juice.

What I miss: Bending over, not walking all gimpy because of my sciatica. Being able to bend down and stretch my back out. Sleep. Not having to have a pillow between my knees at night.Being able to sit "like a lady" with my legs together.

Stretch Marks: Yep.

What is different this time around: Pretty much everything.

What I am looking forward to this week: The weekend?

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Updates on L

We had our 32 week (!!) followup ultrasound today. Our girl is healthy and wiggly and head down, and kept her hand in front of her face the entire time. She's measuring a week ahead size-wise, and weighs about 4 1/2 pounds. She's supposed to gain about a half pound a week from here on out, so depending on when she shows up she'll likely weigh between 6 and 8 pounds. We do have to go back in 4 weeks for another followup to check whether my placenta has moved up any further (as of today, it's moved an entire half a centimeter in 12 weeks, and is still considered "low lying.") Anyway, we did get some cute pictures (these are the best 2) and J was very excited to see pictures of his sister. He's been talking about it all week.
 
Don't worry, she doesn't have a strange growth on her face. It's the ultrasound distorting her arm.

Here she is with her arm, again covering up her little face!