I have to admit that it is a very odd experience dealing with a first pregnancy that is in fact my third child. Probably because of the craziness of having two kids, I don't think I'm very good at being pregnant. I most likely don't rest enough, spend too much time on my feet, don't eat the protein I should, and certainly have neglected to take any belly shots until my 18th week. Oh well. That's just like a third child, isn't it?
But the good news is that I've reached week 18 (on December 18th no less). Everything seems to be progressing quite nicely and I'd like to say that I've moved on from the pregnancy fluffiness to have a bone fide baby bump. The verdict is still out when it comes to my Chinese friends though. My butcher told me last week that I looked skinnier. Our landlord told me I looked fatter. Not pregnant. Fatter. But that's a pretty common remark from people around here. I had to quit getting offended a long time ago.
The verdict is also still out on the gender of our Lao San (that's how you delineate the 3rd child in Chinese). According to Chinese wives tales, if you're craving salty, then it's a boy. Spicy means it's a girl. Well, if anyone has ever eaten popcorn with me, you know that it doesn't take a baby to make me want salty food. So on one hand it's a boy. But the Chinese also say that if you have a dream that the baby is one gender, then it means the baby is actually the other gender. My dreams would indicate I'm having a girl. Either way, we'll be thrilled. Our plan is to find out when we're in Thailand next month since it's not standard procedure in China for doctors to tell you.
In other news, our Christmas craziness officially kicked off this weekend. My marathon weekend involved an overnight house guest, an all-morning baking extravaganza, picking up seven extraordinarily excited college visitors from the train station, helping them exchange money & get checked into their hotel, buying a block of cheese in order to break a 100 kuai bill so I could take the bus home, and then hosting a 3 hour party. And that was just Saturday!
In classic Becky-in-the-kitchen form, I burned my snickerdoodles. And I put too many on the cookie sheet so they all ran together and looked like squares. I really only make cookies once a year so it shouldn't surprise me that something would go wrong. Did that stop me from serving them? No, it did not. Do I feel bad about it? No, I most certainly do not.
My crowning achievement, if I may say so myself, was my Christmas tree cake, suggested by my oh-so crafty friend Rachel. Just bake a cake, dye some frosting green, give it some sprinkle fun, and slap on half a Snickers bar for a trunk. The cake was inhaled by our guests in about 3 and a half minutes. I even saw one girl walk off munching on the trunk, which elicited Meg Ryan's voice from "You've Got Mail" chiding Tom Hanks at a party: "That is a garnish! You're eating the garnish!"
We loved hanging out with some dear Chinese friends and meeting new ones as well.
But let's be honest...the main attraction at our party had to be the boys. Now 30 more people in our city have at least a dozen pictures of my children stored on their cell phones. What they do with these pictures, I'm not entirely sure, but they surely do love taking them. At one point, I had put the boys to bed, turned off their bedroom light, and shut the door for them to go to sleep. I knew that the chances of them actually sleeping was slim to none with all the commotion going on, but I thought it was at least worth a try. About ten minutes later, mobs of party guests started parading through the boys' room for another photo opp. Then someone just picked them up out of their beds and brought them back to the party, where they proceeded to be fed copious amounts of cookies & sweets. If I was any other kind of mom, that would probably have driven me absolutely batty. But I figured it was just one night, they weren't going to sleep anyway, and they really were enjoying all the friends. Plus I think their footie pajamas are so very cute.
This coming week will be nearly as busy, which is why I should probably end this blog and head to bed. And so I shall!