Office Perks

It has been an exciting week around here. And I mean that in a sarcastic sense. Luffy’s been ridiculously busy at work, the dumpling has been working on mobility, and I… well I’ve just been trying to make sure we all the leave the house with pants on*.

On of my coworkers (the only other female professional at our firm) is leaving. There are no hard feelings, just life and opportunities and little things like seeing her husband everyday are taking her away from the DFW area. Apparently, I paved the way for her as our partners actually entertained talks of her telecommuting. It’s been going well with me, so they were willing to give it a shot for her. That’s not going to happen (for a few reasons), but I was a little proud to have laid the groundwork.

Now that I’ve been working from home part time for over six months now, I can tell you that there are a few perks to working from an office that get overlooked:

  • Regularly interacting with humans who don’t require you to change their diaper. 10/10 would recommend. The dumpling’s not at home with me during the day, but then again, neither is anyone else. I highly recommend getting out of the house on occasion to go talk to other adults.
  • Free air conditioning. I know that we all complain that our offices are meat lockers (because I could have started an icicle farm there yesterday), but in the midst of a warm and muggy summer, free air conditioning ain’t a bad deal. If I want my home office cooler, I have to pay for it. One other perk of ridiculously cold offices: mosquito bites and poison ivy rashes get numbed by the cold. Things are much itchier at home.
  • Free snacks and drinks. The snacks part is really not that great because it just further delays me from my weight loss goals. However, the drinks part! My office stocks Le Croix in four flavors, diet Coke and Dr. Pepper, and assorted sodas, coffee, and teas. My home office stocks none of this and I blame the lazy office admin around here. Getting her to do anything is like pulling teeth.
  • Killing time with coworkers. Re: number one up there. Working from home has made me realize just how much time is wasted each day by simply talking with coworkers. There’s no idle chitchat at my home office. At my other office though, stopping by to ask a question could veer off into a thirty minute conversation about driving pet peeves. True story.
  • Seriously, getting to know your coworkers. I know half of these involve them, but it’s so true. There really is not idle chitchat between myself and my coworkers when I’m not there. So all of those little tidbits you pick up (John is thinking about backpacking through Europe next year) and life story arcs (Joe is buying a house), you don’t get any of that when you don’t physically work in the same place. The female coworker I mentioned above, she started a week or so before I went on maternity leave, so I really haven’t physically worked next to her for long. I realized yesterday that I have no idea what her husband does for a living – not even remotely (like I know Will’s wife is a teacher). No clue.
  • Getting ready in the morning. Now I admit that part of this is just a given now that I have a child (and will always and forever at-least-for-the-next-18-years be actively trying to get another person ready in the morning as well). I don’t take time to get ready anymore, and part of “getting ready” is self-care. For instance, I don’t put on my moisturizer very much any more. It has SPF 30 in it and means that I go without sunblock on my face for a good portion of the week now. Tsk tsk. I don’t put on nice clothes very much anymore – it’s all shorts and t-shirts. Which is great! Comfortable! Easy! Except that most people take me a lot more seriously in my work attire. In shorts and a tee, I look like a college student (at best).
  • Diet control. I know! I know. You’re thinking, Belle, what does working in an office have to do with your diet??? Peer pressure, my friends. Peer pressure and planned meals. You see, at the office, the only food I have available to me is the food I brought (which means I thought about it and purposefully packed so totes healthy) and the aforementioned office snacks. I have set myself up at the office as being the healthy eater. If anyone wants to lose weight, I 100% recommend doing this because now I feel like EVERYONE watches what I eat. Someone is always bound to mention it if I’m not eating broccoli that day (because I always eat broccoli). If we are celebrating a birthday with cake, someone will always make a joke that they’re gonna have cake while I eat my yogurt (which then means I feel soooo guilty even thinking about taking a piece of cake). Seriously – coworker expectations plus my own guilt equals the best diet around. At my home office though, not only is there no one around to watch me eat a second or third handful of chips, I am also in close proximity to my fridge and pantry and all the delicious things in them.

In looking back over my list here, the biggest thing is my coworkers. It all boils down to being very isolated while working from home. It’s something you don’t really think about when drooling over the prospect of working from home, but there it is. I think the half and half deal I have going on right now is pretty perfect, the best of both worlds, if I may bust out the cliches on you. Just enough time at the office to interact and connect with my peers and just enough time away to actually enjoy my life.

* Ok, confession time. The dumpling doesn’t ever leave the house in pants, that poor baby. In my defense, this is the one time in his life where it’s perfectly acceptable for him to appear in public sans pants and I want him to enjoy it to the fullest.

Never fear!

It was negative. Whew.

My original speculation was correct – hormonal weirdness – anovulation – Clomid to conceive hypothetical second baby. Check – check – check.

And that’s all we’ll say on the matter, moving on.


I’m taking the dumpling in to the pediatrician’s office this morning to have his iron levels rechecked. I, um, am not very optimistic that his levels are going to be any better than they were last time. He has thwarted me in all attempts at getting that stupid supplement into his mouth and down the hatch. He even hated the smoothie I made for him — with banana! One of his favorites!! I plan on asking for tips because I am tapped out.


I got bangs! Again! Woo!

To explain, I had bangs all through college basically. I think I look pretty good with bangs (I have a long, empty forehead and my hair just sort of naturally seems suited for bangs). Anyway, had them for a while and then decided to grow them out for our wedding. (I had a birdcage veil and thought that the line of the short veil plus the line of my bangs wasn’t a great combination. Plus, we all know that bangs are a wildcard and, on a day that they needed to be absolutely perfect [I did my own hair], I didn’t want to risk it.) (Parenthesis!!) So I grew them out and that, of course, took forever. So then I thought I needed to stick with the no-bangs look for a while and then I got tired of it and chopped my hair off again.

And now that I write that out, it’s not at all as interesting as it is in my head, so I’m sorry about that. But I’ll leave it because the dumpling is waking up and it’s time to head to the pediatrician’s office! Happy Friday!

And for this week’s round of oversharing

DISCLAIMER: It’s been a minute since I lasted veered off into TMI area with you guys and I’m nostalgic for it. Also I’m freaking out. Just a bit. So indulge me please.

So yesterday, I hinted at it:
…especially as my supply has seriously tanked in the past couple of days (is it my period? night weaning? am I pregnant? WHO KNOWS!

(Also relevant reading.) After my period came back, I had another fairly predictable cycle. Woohoo! Obvious ovulation signs, predictable menstruation, a touch long (37 days), but a lot better than most of my previous, un-medicated cycles. Go reproductive system! I thought I was back on track. I’d read, a very long time ago, that having a child can sort of reset your system and that having navigated infertility the first go-round didn’t always mean you would need to for any future children. I kept that hope alive. Last cycle looked pretty good. And then this cycle came.

It’s currently CD47. I haven’t had any strong signs of ovulation at any point. Who knows when my period will arrive. These weeks have felt very similar to this time, when my body kept trying to ovulate but was never successful. So. Probably going to need Clomid to conceive baby number two, no biggie. I went on Amazon and ordered an economy size pack of the cheap pregnancy tests because, as I have said many times, my biggest fear in living with anovulation and infertility is that I will be that woman who gives birth in a bathroom at the movies because I didn’t know I was pregnant. So, yup, back to my old ways of testing every couple of weeks just to make sure. I dusted my hands, mentally, and went about my business.

Then, this week started with lower back cramps. Exactly like a period. Yay! I thought, my period is coming!* Monday evening, though, came and went without the arrival of the crimson wave. Hmm. Tuesday morning dawned and brought with it even more intense backaches and very, very, very light spotting. Hmmmmmmmm. I saw neither hide nor hair of Aunt Flo that day but I was STARVING. All day. I ate. The entire day. Hmmmmmmmmmmmm. And also oh shit. Wednesday dawned with just a slight backache but also brought faint, pink (ewe, sorry) spotting. Once again though, by day’s end, Shark Week had not begun.

Now, it’s today, and I still have not started my period and I still have light cramps and twinges. I am freaking out a bit. Good thing my pregnancy tests were delivered today and await me after work. It’a probably just a hormone thing, but I know peeing on a stick will ease my mind.

*The mark of one who has dealt with infertility. Only us weirdos are ever excited by our periods.

Blind as a bat

I’m sitting in my cubicle today, partially mostly blind because of a contact snafu that started back on Saturday night. (Also, I really do mean the mostly blind part, so please ignore any typos!)

Saturday night, the dumpling woke up soon after Luffy and I went to bed. I blearily made my way to his room and was halfway through nursing him when I realized that my right eye was bugging me. I thought there was an eyelash in it, perhaps, but didn’t want to keep rubbing my eye. After the dumpling finished, I returned him to his crib and made my way back to bed and sleep – desperate to close my eyes and let mother nature take care of the annoying eyelash.

I awoke Sunday morning quite sure that I was coming down with something. Sore throat. Check. Congested sinuses. Check. Watery eyes. Check. I moaned and tried to flop over to go to sleep again when I realized that my eyes weren’t just watery, they were swollen and painful. It hurt to open them. It hurt to close them. I feared that I was having another allergic reaction. (I’ve actually had several subsequent reactions, but they haven’t been as severe as that first one.) I finally gave up on trying to get back to sleep and stumbled into the bathroom to examine my poor eyeballs. They were extremely swollen and red and watery and hmmmm, what’s that little line there?? …. I am an idiot. Upon closer examination, I realized that I had completely forgotten to take out my contacts the night before.

WTH Belle? How could I have completely forgotten that I had perfect vision as I climbed into bed the night before? Or when I got the dumpling for his nursing session? To make matters even more ridiculous, I’d had two separate dreams that night about something being in my eye, like, I don’t know, my subconscious was trying to alert me of how idiotic I was being. Good grief. Way to make life hard for yourself.

Anyway, I took them out immediately and felt relief almost instantly (and then succumbed to food poisoning, but at least my eyes felt better).

So fast forward to today. Today is the first time I’ve attempted to wear contacts since then. They felt perfectly fine when I put them in this morning (and in the hour I wore them around the house before leaving). On the drive in to work however, things started to go downhill. Something must have happened to them; they almost feel warped now. I have astigmatisms, which mean that I have weighted contacts to hold the lenses in a certain position. It’s not working now so they’re slipping everywhere. Plus the left one keeps getting caught on my eyelid and dragged upwards or off to the side. It was driving me bonkers, so I pulled it out, thinking surely I could make it a day with only one contact (especially since I removed only the left, which is technically my stronger eye).

HAHAHAHAHA.

Yeah no. Blind, am I.

I am sitting a foot away from my computer screen and yet, I can’t read these words. I mean, I can, because I know what I’m writing. So my brain fills it all in (funny how we can do that right? like those little paragraphs that point out that we don’t actually need the letters in the correct order to be able to read a passage). But if I actually want to bring the letters into focus, I have to get closer.

Eh, a little closer.

There we go.

I am literally six inches from my screen. I brought my ruler out and everything.

So if you need me, I’ll be here. Nose to pixel with the monitor.

 

Post-weekend sigh of relief

It’s not that I’m psyched that the weekend is over (cause that’s crazy talk right there – who is ever happy to have the weekend over???). It’s just that Luffy and I both succumbed to a mild case of food poisoning over the weekend and we finally feel better.

For the record, poor Luffy’s been sick since last, last weekend and was just starting to feel better from that when we got food poisoning. Which is probably why his manifested first, poor guy. We think it was from Potbelly’s, which we had for lunch Saturday. His kicked in by that night and was in fully force by Sunday morning. Mine was ramping up Sunday afternoon and peaked in the overnight hours. We never actually vomited, but I don’t know if I’d actually call that a win since I, at least, felt like I was on the verge of vomiting most of that time. The rest of the time, I just felt like I had a lead weight in my stomach. Seriously, last night I tried to eat a bite of Luffy’s grilled cheese since I thought I was feeling a bit better. I swear I could feel it settle in my stomach. Gross.

But today! Today I was actually hungry when I woke up, so yay! Feeling much better.


So yeah, our weekend was a wee bit boring. We did see some friends. They came over to play with the baby and scope out our neighborhood. They’re looking into buying a house this Fall because they just adopted an adorable, though very energetic puppy.

I also taught my class Saturday morning in the pouring rain (I mean, not actually in it, but I did have to drive through it).

And, uh, we played with the baby. Totally a weekend well spent.

Thoughts on a Friday

I’ve been battling a tension headache all week. It comes and goes and it’s only on my right side. It stretches from my temple, down across my ear and into my neck and shoulder. It’s made this week a little colored in fatigue and aches.

think it’s related to how I carry the dumpling. Or really, how I do everything else while I carry him. I’m right-handed, so I carry him with my left and do everything with my right. I’m guessing that I compensate for his weight or something with my right side.

ANYWAY – this is all truly fascinating talk, but I can’t help it. It’s flaring up again and makes it hard to focus.


Anyone else out there feel the need to purge their house of clutter right now? Spring Summer cleaning anyone? No? Just me then? Ok.

Figures. I spent all winter cooped up with a newborn and then all spring trying to figure out how to juggle work/baby/fitness/life/etc. I was a little busy, is what I’m saying. Now, though, it feels like I find a new, random project to tackle every day.

For instance, there’s a storage box full of old T-shirts of mine. Once upon a time, I deemed these shirts memorabilia worthy and refused to donate them. Ten years though does a lot to what I’d label as memorable now. So I want to go through it again – pare down what I’m keeping and donate the rest. Get rid of the storage box (which is in the office, by the way) and find a different place to store the rest. Now ask me how long that storage box has been sitting in my office? A couple of years maybe? A long time, is my point and I’ve never felt inclined to even open it and now, suddenly, it must be sorted!

So yeah, I’ve got that going on right now.


Did I ever tell you guys that we put a deposit down on a Tesla Model 3? Like two years ago? Because we did. I’m still not quite sure how I convinced Luffy to go for it. (Actually, that was a lie, it was the tax deductions. That’s how I got him to agree, that adorable nerd. He’s mine ladies, back off.)

Anyway, my gearhead of a coworker has been all excited this week because they are finally moving the first units into production. He wanted to know if I’d heard about my place in line yet. What about options? Timeline? Delivery date? ANYTHING WOMAN, give me some tidbit of info.

Alas, I couldn’t do anything for him; he’s more informed than I am. I’ve been deleting most emails from Tesla (most of them are trying to sell me on their much more expensive models and I laugh because, oh boy Tesla, you clearly overestimate my bank account). I was happy to hear that they’ve started production though. Perhaps I’ll get my car late this year or early next. Which is sort of amazing, given Late 2017 seemed ages away when we originally put down the deposit.


I officially ran out of time, sorry guys. It’s time to pick my dumpling up! Have a good weekend!

Randomness

Hey guys – remember when I used to post a bunch of random things together??? Let’s do that again.


I am super excited for our neighbors. They’re pregnant (having a little boy – squeee!!!). I knew she was due around the beginning of June and I vaguely remember her telling me that her doctor wasn’t going to let her go past June 5th, so I’ve been watching their house like a hawk. I noticed their primary car was gone late Sunday afternoon, but thought that perhaps they were enjoying a last hurrah. Then, like a weirdo, I checked after the dumpling’s 2am nursing session to find that their car was still gone. YAYAYAYAY!!! BABY TIME!!!

Sure enough, their car is still gone today, but I’m hoping that they come home today so I can catch a glimpse of them as they arrive. I swear I’m not a stalker I’m just so excited for them and their new baby! It has me all nostalgic for my own last few days of pregnancy and our first days at home with the dumpling.


Speaking of the dumpling, tomorrow he has his first splash day at daycare. Splash day is every Wednesday throughout summer and I seriously might pass out from the adorableness. I got him little swim trunks and a swim shirt and a little sun protection hat. PICTURE IT. Itty bitty 6 mo swim trunks!!! So cute!


I’m buckling down on my weight loss efforts. My baby is seven months old – I can no longer say I just had a baby. It’s odd, in a way, because it’s been so long since I’ve actively tried to lose weight. That’s not meant as some humble brag – har har har – I legitimately have been at the level of fitness that I desired for a very long time. “Dieting” for me was more of a oh, I ate a bunch of crap this weekend and feel so bloated so I’ll eat really well for a couple of days and voila!! So I’m trying to cement it in my head that this will probably take more than a couple of days.

I was actually feeling pretty good about myself until we went to my parent’s house for Memorial Day. I didn’t even eat that poorly, I just had a lot of champagne (what can I say, my mom and I both love champagne). And alas, all of those bubbles add up to definitely more than air. Le boo.


Speaking of Memorial Day, we had a great time in my hometown! It was the dumpling’s second flight (remember the first one??) and he did amazingly well this time too. This trip was his first time spending the night someplace else. I was a touch concerned, but vowed to just take it in stride. He reverted back to two night wakings, one normal and one out of the ordinary. I think the out-of-the-ordinary one was more due to him being aware that he was not in his own room and thus made it hard for him to go back to sleep in the early morning hours (around 5:30am). Overall though, he still did really well.

It was also really interesting to see his waketimes be affected because of his completely new environment. He was so busy observing and figuring things out that he’d be ready for a nap about an hour and a half after he woke up (he’s solidly in two-hour waketimes right now). It mostly meant he was a yo-yo of happy baby, tired baby. Poor dumpling.

Another first for the books – we went swimming! And here is when I really struggle with my decision not to post pictures of him because he was SOOOO ADORABLE. My mom, who was super excited about us coming, went out and got him a little floaty thing. One of these. He was very wary at first (and I don’t blame him – the pool is a lot bigger than his bath tub), but he warmed right up to it. He even paddled his little feet the entire time. He was exhausted afterwards, but I think he enjoyed it.


Lastly, that book I had on hold at the library, it actually became available much earlier. I read it last week and, honestly, I wasn’t impressed. I really like some of Rainbow Rowell’s other books, but this one wasn’t great. At one point, I honestly thought the writing was bad on purpose (the whole premise from her book Fangirl is that this book, Carry On, Simon is fan-fiction), but, after reading her acknowledgements, I realized that wasn’t the case. I can definitely see why most authors stick to specific genre. Rowell is really good with contemporary stories, little dramas that take place in current day. She was not adept at creating a world, however, as her descriptions of things like dragons or the magic in the book fell a little flat. Also, if you’ve read Fangirl, I oddly connected with the characters in her fan-fic (Simon and Baz, who are the main characters here – I know, it’s a little hard to follow) more deeply as presented there, in little snippets. For some reason, that did not translate to a whole book and they felt one-dimensional.

Anyway, read it if you can borrow it and were curious about, but I wouldn’t recommend buying it.


And that’s all I have folks! Along with trying to lose some weight, I’m also really trying to get better about posting but, you know, work and life gets in the way. Excuses, excuses.