January, 2012 Archive

Apparently, I’m Still Pregnant

by Alison Friedman in Mommy's Musings, Pregnancy

Last week, Bryan took me out on a date that had been scheduled for weeks in advance. I was so excited to get dressed up. Put on mascara. Wear a bra. Dumping the mommy uniform and exchanging it for the trophy wife costume was such a cheap thrill, and being surprised was even more exciting.

We drove up to parking garage of The Grove and I was hoping that the big surprise date was a tea party at the American Girl Store. It was either dining with dolls that cost more than most people’s monthly mortgage (those dolls are the 1%) or going on a shopping spree through Nordstrom after hours, but Bryan confirmed the date was neither of those experiences. I quickly mourned the absence of hanging out with the threads of Savvy and t.b.d., and then we took a turn toward the movie theatre. Why we would schlep to Hollywood to go to a movie theatre at The Grove when we have perfectly good theatres out in the ‘burbs was beyond me until we walked into the lobby and encountered a line. I knew it must have been for some special showing of something, but had no idea what it was until I saw an official-looking woman walking by with a poster and an easel. The artwork was recognizable as something I have been dying to see ever since I heard about the project almost two years ago; We were in line to see an exclusive screening of the NBC show Smash that debuts after that football game thing in February.

Girl squeal times a trillion.


We had arrived at 5:30 and we weren’t allowed into the theatre until about 7, so we made friends with the people in line around us. Since I didn’t know the agenda of the evening, I wasn’t sure what the food situation would be — and neither did Bryan — so since I was a little hungry, I ditched the line and got take-out from the restaurant next door to munch on while we waited to get inside the screening.

I perused the menu and decided on something snack-ish and easy to eat while standing in line. I chose chicken tenders. The menu indicates they’re served with ranch dressing, which is one of the many white condiments I refuse to eat, so I told the guy who took my order, a no-personality 20-something guy with tattoos freckling his neck, to just leave out the ranch and give me BBQ sauce instead. And this is how the conversation went:

Thuggish waiter: So you can’t have ranch dressing, right?
Alison: Well, no, I just don’t like it. But I love BBQ sauce, so I’ll take that.
Thuggish waiter: Yeah, but I heard you’re not allowed to have it.
Alison: Oh, um, I’m allowed to have it. I just don’t like it. So… yeah.
Thuggish waiter: So your doctor doesn’t tell you not to eat ranch dressing? Because my girlfriend’s doctor told her not to have it and she’s, like, ten weeks along or something.
Alison: Wait. WHAT?
Thuggish waiter: The baby. You can’t have it because of the baby.
Alison: Oh! Um. Yeah. I already HAD my baby. So, I just don’t like ranch dressing. I’m not pregnant.
Thuggish waiter: You’re not? Oh.
Alison: Yeah, [awkward laughter at the douchebag-ness of this guy] HA HA HA HA HA, I already had a baby. Anyway, yeah HA HA HA HA HA, just no ranch. I don’t like it.

I think he blushed out of embarrassment, but I couldn’t tell because of his tattoos.

And then, to save face, he threw in free cookies and brownies, which is like, so not fair because that’s clearly why I look pregnant!

So, on the big date night out after the end of my pregnancy, apparently I looked pregnant. Which is almost kind of maybe perhaps a little bit funny because I was pregnant. Five months ago.

It’s not that I let the thuggish waiter get to me, but he kind of confirmed something for me that I already knew. It’s time to get serious about being unpregnant. I mean, I enjoyed blowing up like the Good Year blimp for 40 weeks, but now I have a five-month-old and I think it’s fine time I appear to not be carrying her Irish twin. So we are saying bye bye to the poochy tummy. I signed up for a boot camp, which is a miracle because it’s no secret that I am anything but athletic. And to be there and working out at 6:30 a.m. must mean that those Mayans are right about the end of the world and all that jazz.

It’s been nine days of an intense circuit training regimen and eating healthy power foods. I’ve lost six pounds. I mean, probably only due to the shock my body is going through, but I notice a difference. I don’t have a weight goal. I’m not even obsessed with the size on the tags of my clothes. I just want to look good naked. That simple. We already know I don’t like caloric condiments like ranch dressing so I am on the right path!

I really am cracking up about how clueless that guy was to insinuate I was pregnant. I’m not really insulted because he wasn’t that intelligent. I mean, unless you can see a woman crowning, every smart man knows not to gamble that tricky and amorphous tummy which can be the result of a big dinner or a disguised, front-wearing fanny pack. Or, in my case, the deflated home of an evicted baby.

Oh, and in case you’re wondering, Smash is a smash! It is definitely going to be the best new show on television and I highly recommend it to everyone. It’s just so perfectly produced and I was literally lifted out of my seat and blown away by the concept. And, you know, it’s not easy for a pregnant woman to be blown away.


  1. Patty
    1/20/2012 5:40 AM

    Alison, I LOVE your writing. You always put a smile on my face…an ear to ear grin, complete with giggles actually!!! As for the “thuggish waiter”, you’re right…he should have known better. I’m pretty sure that that is one of the top 10 rules in the “how to be a man” handbook but he obviously can’t read. Sometimes a doofus is just a doofus, even when they are in those high powered, fast food executive positions!!;)

Hot (Mom) Wheels

by Administrator in Baby Land, Mommy's Musings

It was inevitable. It could not be stopped. I’d become another statistic. It was fine time that I … DUN DUN DUN

Get. A. Mom. Car.

Don’t get me wrong. I wasn’t exactly driving the Barbie Corvette for the past 28 years of my life. My first car was the original ’98 Honda CR-V which was followed by my college graduation present of a sweet lookin’ red Volvo S40. The poor Volvo got totaled a year-and-a-half after I got it thanks to a super fun hit-and-run by an unlicensed driver on my way to work one morning, so we quickly had to get a replacement which was a VW Jetta. LOVED that Jetta, but soon after, I was hired by a publishing company which GAVE me a car, so I rocked the Camry for about 18 months until I left that job to go back to school. My first leased car as a married woman brought me back to a Jetta and I enjoyed the ride for the past three years.

There. There’s my delicious smorgasbord of a car history. Comfortable and safe cars; the meatloaves and cheeseburgers of vehicles. No Batmobiles or DeLoreans with Flux Capacitors (I just scored points with the hubster for that one), but I did enjoy some sweet rides in my 12 years of licensed-hood. With the lease up on Jetta II, and my back breaking from schlepping an infant in and out of it, there was no doubt in our minds we had to get a mom car. An SUV. A small SUV.

We shopped around and Bryan did a thorough job comparing and charting rates on leases and gadgets in each vehicle. We checked out the Hyundai Santa Fe and the Nissan Murano. We fantasized about the Lexus and BMW models, and then slapped ourselves back to reality and set our eyes on the Honda CR-V.

That’s right. Back to my roots.

And thanks to some sweet talkin’ and the luck of timing called “The End of 2011,” we not only scored a reasonably priced CR-V but it came more loaded than a TGI Fridays potato skins platter (again with the food?!). I’m sorry, but can we discuss butt warmers? There is nothing more fantastic in the world than your tushie heating up as you drive on a cold winter’s day. Granted, our winter has been rocking 70s and 80s on the weather reports, but in January, I pretend it’s winter-winter instead of summer-winter and declare mandatory butt warmers!

Also, Bluetooth. Hi. It’s so good to finally meet you! I look like a crazy person when I use you because I appear to be talking to myself when other drivers check out my sah-weet ride, but still, I don’t care. I love that your buttons read my mind and my callers’ voices appear in the air, surrounding my ears like a hug from ear muffs. It’s beautiful.

Satellite radio has also been making my rides more fun. I have had satellite radios in the past, but they’ve all been portable devices with wires and cords and power outlets and… ugh… what a mess. Having an installed system and seeing the songs’ information on the screen? Oh, it’s a delight. And what kind of weirdo has Broadway showtunes programmed in the #1 spot and right next to it in the #2 spot is Howard Stern? Oh yes, that’s me. So? I’m eclectic.

And the storage! So much room for mommy-and-baby tchotchkes and the stroller and the bags! And I can so easily change Madelyn’s diaper in the cargo space because we have a shelf extender. I can’t stop gushing. Honda should pay me. Hello? Honda? Hi. I need money.

Really, though, there’s nothing more exciting than driving a new car, don’t you think? I imagine I drive the way Princeton walks on the sidewalk: proud, tail up, ears perked, with a little bit of a swagger. I just feel GOOD in my new car. It’s a three-year lease and I’m already certain we’ll just turn right around and get another CR-V.

I may not be a Hot Mom these days (more on that later), but I’m driving some Hot Wheels and it’s an honor to be driving Miss Madelyn.

Bryan signs our life away to lease the new car.

The new car in all her fluorescent-light-in-the-night beauty.

Driving at 10 and 2 is for photo moments.

It's never too early to teach a 4-month-old to drive to prepare her for her yellow and red Little Tikes car.

  1. Kristin
    1/16/2012 2:26 PM

    Hi Alison, I’ve known Bryan since we were little kids and I’m also a very close friend of Whitney Cooley. I always see Bryan posting links to this blog on Facebook but finally got around to checking it out.. I just want to say that your posts crack me up! You have an awesome writing style and such a great sense of humor. Congrats on the new wheels! 🙂

  2. Kevin Kirkpatrick
    1/16/2012 12:10 PM

    Oh nice, I’m a big fan of the CR-V. I took at look at this one at the car show and was amazed at the handle in the back that can fold down the seats in one pull. Congrats!!

Five Months!

by Alison Friedman in Marvelous Madelyn, Monthiversaries

Every month, I am wowed by the growth of this super little girl. I don’t have her exact measurements and we’ll get the official stats when we go to the doctor for her six-month check up in February, but Madelyn is almost 14 pounds and probably a little more than 25 inches long. The real growth — the fun growth — is in her personality! It’s shining through now and she is so much fun to play with and watch as she explores.

This month, Madelyn has…

  • Started the motions to sit up. She can’t fully sit up on her own yet, but she keeps doing what looks like tummy crunches and is on the verge of getting herself up in a sitting position, but! Oohhhhh crash. I’m thinking by six months, she’ll be sitting up to do most of her playing.
  • Gone on her first trip to the snow… even though there was no snow. We went to Tahoe in December and had a blast with our friends. She got to wear adorable clothes that bundled her up for warmth and she did a great job sleeping in a new place/mansion.
  • Taken a great interest in her big brother, Princeton. She follows him with her eyes everywhere he goes! She’s absolutely fascinated by him. She’s also gotten curious and wanted to pet him, which is fine and dandy until her Wonder Woman Mega Grip crumples his fur into her hand and he looks at me like, “Um? Excuse me? You’re going to let her do this to me?” If he gets annoyed, he never takes it out on Madelyn. He just removes himself from the situation and Madelyn finds something else to explore. I couldn’t be happier about my kids’ relationship with each other. Tee hee!
  • Started to teethe a little bit. There is a tiny white dot on her lower gum that gives her some trouble here and there. It’s slowed up a bit, but she was showing more signs of teething in December when her entire fist was in her mouth and the drooling was flowing like the Mississippi. So far, though, nothing has cut through so she still has that cute gummy smile.
  • Tried solids for the first time! The doctor said to give it a whirl, and we did, but she didn’t much care either way for the oatmeal cereal. More on that later, but we haven’t continued because it may still be too soon. But it was definitely cute to feed her with a spoon and watch her discover the cereal in her mouth in confusion!
  • Been rolling over non stop! This is Madelyn’s preferred method of movement. She’s discovering new things on her playmat now that she can look at it from above. Sometimes, though, she rolls over in her sleep, wakes up, and is not happy about the position so she lets us know. Boy, does she let us know!
  • Begun to grab for everything! Toys she used to not even care about are suddenly in her hands. She also likes to grab our food when we eat so we have to be careful when she’s on our laps at restaurants that she doesn’t get spicy sauces on her hands or get close to the water glasses. It could be disastrous. And of course whatever goes in her hands, goes in her mouth! Thank goodness for the Babyganics cleaners and wipes!
  • Attended her first University of Arizona basketball game! This future Wildcat joined us and some of her favorite friends to watch the Cats beat the Trojans at USC. We had a great time and she was an amazing sports fan! She sat on my lap and was mesmerized by the action and movement on the court and on the big screen. Perhaps we have a future basketball star? Probably, more likely, a future cheerleader. Or, actually, if she gets her mama’s thighs, not a cheerleader. How about mascot instead?

Bloopers from our 5-month photo shoot:

Chanukah Princess

For the majority of my adulthood, the holiday season has been pretty anticlimactic. During my college days, if I was still in Tucson during Chanukah, we hardly celebrated. When I graduated and started dating Bryan, we exchanged a couple gifts for a year or two and then decided we’d just treat each other well all throughout the year. The first year we lived together, we decorated the house with blue and Chanukah-themed tzchotchkes, but for the few years after, the decorations stayed in their plastic tub beyond 365 days. This year, though, with Madelyn in everyone’s lives, Chanukah took on a whole new excitement and we celebrated as if it was the first time the holiday had meaning since we were kids ourselves.

The takeaway: people really like Madelyn! Her grandparents loved spoiling her, her great aunts and cousins made sure to include her in their generous gift-giving, and her Auntie Ali enjoyed buying new things for her niece. Lighting candles and watching her stare at the lit menorah was magical, and we used our best singing voices when saying the prayer. We patiently helped her tear open the wrapping paper and savored each moment as she discovered what she was holding in her hands.

Next year, when Madelyn has a better understanding of the holiday — or that there is a holiday to be excited about — her mommy and daddy will have a present to open all eight nights. This year, though, we let everyone else enjoy the gift-giving experience with a mini gathering at our house with Mimi and Poppa and Mimi’s parents, GG and Grandy. There was a bigger party a few nights later at Grandma and Grandpa’s house with lots of cousins. And the next night, Grandma and Grandpa showered their granddaughter with even more presents! Holy matzo balls! All of the Chanukah party nights were full of yummy food (no latkes for Madelyn this year!), lots of new toys, and a full-on game of Pass the Baby.

Madelyn may not have had any idea about why all of her family gathered or about the historical and storied significance of the holiday, but it was another milestone in her first year of life that will make great photo collections!

Woo hoo! An excuse to use the fancy married China!

Bryan's latkes went straight to my thighs. Worth every calorie.

GG, Madelyn, and Mama: content after latkes and formula.

Madelyn shows off for her great grandparents

So far so good -- the baby didn't try to grab the candles.

Madelyn surrounded by a deep blue sea... of presents.

One day, she'll be tearing open pink rectangular boxes of Barbies, but this year it's all about...

THE RING STACKER... in. her. mouth.

Madelyn and Madeline. The little French girl must taste as good as a baguette.

Dog kisses. The gift that keeps on giving. And giving. And giving.

Madelyn gets deja vu for 8 nights in a row.

Chanukah at Grandma & Grandpa's is like an episode of the Jewish Partridge Family -- everyone sings!

... and 3.2 seconds later, the water ducky became the saliva ducky.

Twelve months of Madelyn!

Two babies, both dressed up in animal outfits.

Madelyn's first tea party set! Baby Bri'ish accent not included.

  1. 1/10/2012 11:31 AM

    I need to come up with new synonyms so I can keep telling you how adorable you guys are! Seriously, you’re killing me!

  2. Mimi
    1/5/2012 5:50 PM

    The 1st photo displays the delicious table of latkes and brisket……and then I see your exercise ball in the background. Was that to remind us that we needed to burn off all those well-received calories!? Madelyn, you can enjoy the yummy latkes next Chanukah!