Tuesday, August 26, 2008

A Bit of Everything, Mostly Nothing

Though lots has been happening lately, I haven't felt very inspired about documenting it.  I think I've had too many journal-ish entries as of late, and was hoping for something more interesting.  However, I've just been spending most of my time keeping up with the cleaning, reading other peoples' blogs, and noticing my belly increasing in size.

One bit of excitement- we've started getting tomatoes on our plants!!  So far, only our mini, yellow, pear-tomatoes have ripened, and I haven't yet had a big enough harvest to populate an entire salad, but they're yummy enough to pop in plain.  Even though I didn't spend one cent on plants for our garden, between gifts from my mother and a neighbor, we somehow ended up with 12 tomato plants of various species- all planted within two 3x4 foot boxes.  Here's a glimpse of the massiveness of our tomato tangle- I hope I'll be able to reach them all! Needless to say, I've already started researching tomato recipes... if you have any great ones, I'm alllll ears.

Everything else seems to be going just great!  Jay has started having "official business" to attend to, and I've been lucky enough be be invited to a couple of faculty breakfasts the past couple of days.  It's funny to all of a sudden be on the other end of the spectrum in academia.  I'm not old enough to be married to a professor.

We had another uneventful baby check-up on Monday, and I've so far gained 19 pounds during this pregnancy, which means I'm allowed 6 more pounds in the next 3.5 weeks.  Wahoo! Bring on the ice cream :)  I must admit, for as comfortable as I've been the last 8 months, I really can't complain about anything.  However, in the past couple of days, I've noticed that it takes a great amount of effort to get out of my chair, so I have to be sure I don't need to get up for awhile, every time I sit somewhere comfy.  (Which is usually to read yet another birthing/nursing/baby book.)  I have three more preggy-books to finish and 2 more to peruse before I'm willing to lose the belly, and then I can get back to reading "normal" things...  I have a real hankering to read a really great novel.  Any recommendations?

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

"Termintes", Toys, and Taxes

I can't believe it's already mid-August!  My, my, time flies...

For those of you wondering about how my ant misfortune turned out, I ended up discovering that night (via the lovely interweb) that they were, in fact, carpenter ants.  I.e. these were not the cute annoyances that take over picnics on red-checked table-clothes, these are the monsters that eat at your house like termites.  And of course after checking out the box my ant-killer came in, it specifically says "will not work for fire or carpenter ants".  SO we ended up calling an exterminator and I've been finding dead ants all over my house ever since. (Less of them every day- I think I only found 3 yesterday.)  This is good, no?

Now that I don't have to patrol the ant population, I've had more time for more important things, like cleaning the old toys my sister and sister-in-law have given us for our little one.  (I can't believe I'm far enough along to start counting the weeks backward instead of forward!)  This kid already has more toys than I had my whole childhood career, so Jay and I have pacted to never buy him another toy again.  (We'll see how long that actually lasts...)  Well, maybe once he's grown out of Mr. Potato Head...

Anyway, our kitchen countertops seem to be ever-littered with drying toys, but I'm hoping today will be the last.  Yay!

As far as other exciting occurrences...  We got our property tax appraisal last week.  Yikes!  All the unexpected joys of "owning" a home (I mean, paying a bank that owns our home).  The notice tells you what your taxes were last year and if the rate has increased, tells you what they are this year and when the board meeting occurs so that you can voice your opinion about the whole thing.  

Well, the rate has increased.

Being strongly opposed to taxes, we decided this might be a great opportunity to utilize our democratic rights and "do something" about this.  Jay gives a great summary of the whole event here.  The quick and dirty version, though, is even though everyone who showed up was basically complaining about the tax (and at least one of the board members mentioned this before she made her final approving vote on the tax increase) the vote to pass the tax raise was unanimous by all board members.  Sheesh!  What a waste of 3-and-a-half hours... (and we left the meeting early.)  That's the first time Jay and I have been out past 10pm in a long time- and it wasn't even fun!

Anyway, I at least feel like I've done my patriotic duty and learned a little bit about the bureaucracy of "the system".  I only have one question-  were the mac-books that all the board members using paid for by tax dollars?  'Cause I'm pretty sure they need that nice of equipment for all their pretty power-point presentations. (Did I mention that the board President took notes during the whole event by hand?)

Friday, August 1, 2008

Awesome Pants and Giant Ants

A couple of things:

1)  My life just got 10 times better yesterday - I got a new pair of pants!

Usually, though it's fun to get new clothes, a new piece of wearable fashion rarely does more for me than allow me to brag about how cheap it was (because if I bought it, it was cheap) and make me feel a bit more "hip" or "cute" or "stylin" for a little while.  But this new article is an extraordinary bit of fabric.  Indeed.  And anyone who knows me, and finds out that I paid FULL PRICE for these (i.e. they were not on sale-  I'm no thief!) would instantly have gigantic red flags furiously waving in their brains because Libby never buys clothing unless it's on sale.  

Until yesterday.

These pants are a breath of fresh air.  Literally.  What's so great about them, you ask?  Well, honestly, I don't think anyone could possible understand until they've carried around a small child (that feels really huge) as if someone has decided to attach a watermelon to their front.  I didn't realize how uncomfortable all my other maternity pants were until I tried Motherhood Maternity's Secret-fit Belly. Sitting is once again comfortable!  No red lines under the belly and I have lost that breezy, I-feel-like-a-disgusting-man-with-a-beer-belly-so-huge-that-no-shirt-will-cover-it sensation.  All I can say is I'll be wearing these every day until the little one decides to emerge and I'm not looking back.

2) We have ants.  Big ones.

It's weird though because I'm not really sure what they're doing.  I've watched and watched their trail and they are not headed anywhere near our food.  They commence from a small hole between the molding and tile right next to the front door on the right side.  Then they crawl along the base of the door into another hole in the molding and tile on the other side of the door (on the left).  A little bit later it emerges and returns to the initial hole (on the right).  There is no sign of food or carrying anything of any kind.  Very strange.  Also, I rarely see more than one or two out at a time.

I have considered that maybe the ant that reappears from the left side is not the same one that entered, so I started sucking them up with a vacuum.  It seems that nothing comes out unless something went in.  (unless they're smart enough to wait for me to leave...)  

We tried squirting that ant food stuff that they're supposed to eat up and take back to the colony to kill the whole lot, but it hasn't worked.  I might add that we had some much smaller ants in the guest-bath shower, and the same ant food seemed to work like a charm.  But these ants won't even touch the ant-food.  

Any suggestions?

In the mean time, I have permanently parked our vacuum right next to the front door, and every time I pass by, I look for my next victim.  I don't think I've killed so many bugs in my life as I have this week alone.  I probably suck up about 20 ants everyday and they just keep coming.