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Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Food and other stuff

There are a couple of things I've been advised to give up during my pregnancy. Like smoking and doing drugs. But since I neither smoke nor do drugs .... it hasn't really been hard to give that up!

Here are a list of foods that I have to give up for the next few weeks/months .... FYI this list is MUCH HARDER to give up!
1.) Sushi / Sashimi
2.) Coffee and Tea (unless it's decaf tea)
3.) Canned tuna
4.) Coke and Diet Coke (actually all kinds of soda for that matter)
5.) Hot sauce / Chili sauce (it causes heartburn)
6.) Oysters on the half-shell (which I was so tempted to eat last Sunday but was luckily able to control myself!).

I've also been advised to limit my carb intake. Cut down on rice, bread, pasta, potatoes and starches. This is SUPER HARD for me too - I'm a Pinoy at heart and most meals are not complete without rice =( I've tried to limit these carbs to lunch time so that I can at least try to burn up the calories the rest of the day .... (operative word is "TRY").

I've also been trying to limit my sugar consumption cause I am worried about gestational diabetes. Also, since high blood sugar runs in my family and Jojo's, I'm trying to be careful to spare Jellybean that while he/she is still developing.

While I can not find myself enjoying anything greasy or fried these days (the smell of cooking oil still drives me insane!). Here is a list of food I've been craving:
1.) Nectarines
2.) Clementine Oranges
3.) And ... Steak (I've been dreaming of a a prime rib dinner from House of Prime Rib in San Francisco for days now!).
*It's a weird list, I know!

Oh and in other exciting news ... I bought my first maternity dress yesterday. While, I don't need maternity clothes just yet, my mom did advise me to start looking around. Coincidentally my friend, Mar, sent me a coupon for a 30% discount off Gap and Banana Republic. So I decided to browse and found a really nice jersey dress at Gap Maternity. I think I can even wear it now and probably all the way till I deliver. It's really nice and perfect for work (and maybe even going out too). So I was excited and ordered it online. It should be here in the next 7 days =)

Monday, August 30, 2010

Morning Sickness???

I’ve made a semi-important discovery lately about my so called “morning sickness”. It turns out that what I am suffering from isn’t exactly morning sickness per se. The last couple of days, I’ve been noticing that I get nauseous at around 5 or 6 pm. The whole day I am fine but at around that time, just like clockwork, I get slightly dizzy and find myself holding back the gagging. Initially I had attributed it to afternoon sickness (or that maybe Jellybean is on Manila time and so it would be mid-morning back home). But upon further observation, it’s really more so because I am hungry.

I usually eat breakfast at around 8:00 am, lunch at 1:00 and dinner at 7:00. Three meals a day with occasional (but pretty random snacking throughout the day) is usually enough to tide me over. But I’ve found that whenever I get hungry, Jellybean lets me know he/she is hungry too by making me nauseous. We “tested” this theory last weekend. I skipped breakfast last Sunday because we were going to mass and having brunch right after. And while, I have not had any morning sickness the last couple of mornings, all through the mass I felt the need to throw up. Jojo and I literally had to step outside to get some fresh air. AHA. It was indeed Jellybean’s way of telling me “Please feed me!”. I had brunch and a nectarine in the mid-afternoon and when 5:00 came, I was feeling fine. No nausea in the late afternoon!

So now, I have to modify my eating plan somewhat. No more three large meals a day but rather 5 or 6 smaller meals throughout the day. I now have to eat breakfast, have a midmorning snack, eat lunch, have merienda (afternoon snack), take a sensible dinner, and even have some fruit while watching tv. I’m trying that out today and we’ll see if it does solve the mystery of my morning sickness (both for Manila and LA time!).

Sunday, August 22, 2010

We're Back (Not That We Really Left)

We're back home. Actually we didn't really go anywhere ... but since we had our place fumigated for termites, we decided to check in to a hotel and have a mini vacation of sorts. It did kinda, sorta feel like a vacation even if we were less than 4 miles from our house! It was nice though to come home every day to a clean room, have fresh towels and crisp linens waiting, and to have the airconditioner turned on 24/7 (such perfect timing too since this week and next we are in the upper 90's). Also, Jojo and I purposely did not bring our notebooks and so it was a blissful, no=technology break for us too (of course, Jojo could not resist and had his Blackberry with him at all times). But other than that, it was very relaxing!

So anyway, we are back home today and there are so many little things that need to be done. Wash the sheets, wash the dishes, empty out the fridge, re-stock our pantry/fridge, wipe down counters, remove plastic covers, etc. All of these are precautionary but since Jellybean is with us, we have to be safe rather than sorry. I am soooo glad that our housekeeper, Louisa is here today and is able to help me with all these. What a godsend!

Other than that, our weekend is pretty uneventful. We took some of my colleagues from work for dimsum at PV Palace yesterday. It was their first time. It was actually very funny how they had a million and one questions about every single dish! They kind of had their "quirks " (for lack of a better word). Faten is vegetarian, Rubi is the most un-adventurous eater on the planet, and Osei does not like vegetables. So between the three of them, plus Jojo and I, we had a lot of fun sampling different dimsum dishes.

Today, I think we'll be staying in and just tidying up the house. Probably mass later in the afternoon and Mitsuwa for dinner (I love their authentic Japanese food court where you can get little Japanese bento boxes!).

In Jellybean news, we'll not much to report. My morning sickness is more controlled now and my sense of smell is no longer as sensitive. I've been able to have more normal meals these days. We've started receiving gifts for the little Bean (books on parenting, Baby Einstein CDs, and Jellybean's first official onesie). So cute! And sweet of everyone too =) Thanks to Tita Marik, Tita Tracy and Tita Cha =)

Tuesday, August 17, 2010


Jojo and were taking a walk last night and got to talking about how much our lives will change once Jellybean arrives. Of course, at this point, it's hard to say how much exactly our lives will be different. But it would be an easy assumption to make that things will be quite drastically different. For starters, we will soon be responsible for the well-being and happiness of an entirely different human being. That is definitely going to mean making some changes.

Overall, our life together as a couple has been ideal. We live pretty "selfish" lives. By "selfish", I don't mean that we don't share or that we withhold certain aspects of it. But rather, we live our lives according to our whims and what makes us happy. I guess rather than the word "selfish", what better describes us would be "indulgent". Take last weekend for example. We wake up when we want to wake up and sleep in when we want to sleep in. Once we get up from bed, Jojo goes straight to his computer (playing games and checking Facebook!). I take my sweet time just lounging around in bed and watching tv under the covers. I told Jojo once Jellybean gets here, we probably have to get up when he/she gets up and then we have to feed him/her when we do.

For lunch we either eat in when we are in the mood to cook or eat out when we are too lazy to make anything. Our food choices are mostly what we feel like eating that day - it could be dimsum or Mexican food or salads at Souplantation, or even good old leftovers and ever reliable canned goods. Of course, when Jellybean arrives, we would now have to consider what he/she would eat when we go out to dine. My sister-in-law was telling me they haven't been to any good, sit down restaurants in a while (and absolutely no "ethnic foods" at all) since all her kids like to eat are chicken fingers and mac n cheese. Then there is of course not being able to sit down to eat together as we would probably have to take turns feeding and playing with Jellybean (and hoping he/she does not break out in a tantrum while we are eating with other people!).

In the afternoons, Jojo and I sometimes go to the gym or go shopping. We usually browse bookstores or catch a movie. Sometimes we hang out with friends. All that would have to change for a while since having a baby means doing things the baby can do and wants to do (it's no longer about what the parents want to do!). Even going to mass in the evenings will have to change. We will no longer be able to sit in the front pews where we now sit and will have to sit at the back pews (separated by the clear glass) with the rest of the parents with fussy babies! =)

Jojo and I were laughing about all the little changes we would have to make to our routines. Like waking up extra early in the mornings (or in the middle of the night) to take care of Jellybean's needs first. Like giving up going on vacations to the places we planned to go and designating Disneyland and Sea World as our vacation destinations for the next few years. Like skipping our favorite tv shows in the evenings because maybe they aren't rated PG and accepting the fact that the Disney Channel and Nickelodeon will be the channels of choice in our home rather than HBO and HGTV. Like how most of our savings will now go to buying toys and books and children's clothes. Lots more, of which I have no doubt! Sigh. I still think it will all be worth it though!

Saturday, August 14, 2010

To My Dear Baby Bean,

This is my first official "letter" to you. So, hmmm, where do I start? Let me tell you a little about my pregnancy so far. The last couple of days have been a little better. My stomach has settled somewhat and even if I still have occasional bouts of "morning" sickness, they are not as strong nor as often. There have been a few embarrassing instances where I might have gagged out loud in public. But nothing I can't live down. I am still a giant sleepyhead and am now sleeping almost 9 hours a night. Inspite of that I still have a hard time waking up every morning. I guess I am storing up sleep in preparation for when you arrive and will need me to get up with you in the middle of the night. I find that I also get tired more easily these days and feel lethargic in the early afternoons. My appetite is a little better. I still mostly eat steamed, boiled, broiled or freshly prepared dishes and am staying away from anything fried or oily (as that does not help my gag reflexes!). But the biggest change is my need to pee almost constantly. It's sometimes bordering on hilarious how often I have to go to the bathroom!

But all is well. I can't complain. The good news is it's been a real joy to wake up every morning and realize that you are in me. I often fall asleep and wake up with my hands over my belly. You are too small to feel right now ... but just knowing you are there is reassuring to me. It may just be my imagination but I can swear I feel you moving and settling in my tummy. Jojo and I talk to you constantly. Sometimes serious things but more often than not silly things too. I am not sure if you can hear everything we say to you - but I know that you can feel how much we love you.

Pretty much everyone knows about you now. We've shared your arrival with with our closest family and friends. Every day my co-workers ask about you. We've also had a couple of people volunteer to throw you a baby shower already. I can understand how excited Jojo and I are but it's amusing to me to see other people so excited to meet you too. Thanks to the power of the internet (blogging, Facebook, and emails) - everyone is so eagerly anticipating your arrival. I just know that day will be one of the best days of my life. I can't wait to meet you!

Love you, my little Baby Bean.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Meeting Jellybean =)

I met our little Jellybean today =) I just came from my doctor's office and am still in awe. I came face-to-face (well, it was my face and the ultrasound monitor) with our baby. It's too soon to tell whether Jellybean is a girl or a boy (it doesn't matter really) - the good news is the heartbeat is strong and everything seems to be in order. It all seems so surreal to me right now. I have to say the moment I laid my eyes on that teeny-tiny Bean ... everything just seemed to fall into place and everything in the world was right again. What a wonderful, humbling moment that I will cherish forever.

I am officially 7 weeks and 1 day pregnant. And our baby is due on March 28th. OMG! I can't wait! 7 months seem like forever ... but it also seems like too short a time to prepare for everything that needs to get done. I don't know where to start but I am so excited to get going! Jojo and I have been waiting for this and I know it will be awesome.

On a side note, my OB-GYN, Dr. Chen is the bestest doctor in the whole wide world. He is totally a calm, reassuring and positive doctor. Such a perfect godsend for a first time, worrywart, mother-to-be. He reminds me of a kindly old uncle but is pretty amazing when it comes to giving me information and tips. He is very patient too (he really took time to answer my gazillion and one questions - even my most silly questions got serious answers). Thank God for Dr. Chen. I know Jellybean and I will be in good hands.

I also got a mini tour of the hospital (where I will be due). It all seems like such a dream right now. But luckily, it's a good dream and I am praying everything continues to go well. So far, so good ... even my "morning sickness" was cooperating all through my doctor and hospital visit today.

Again, I am so blessed and thankful. This is such a miracle. And I am so honored to be part of it all =)

Sunday, August 08, 2010


It's been just two days since we've found out we're about to become parents and to be very truthful, Jojo and I are acting like we've been ready for this since forever! In my case, I've been going through a rough few days. For starters, the term "morning sickness" is very misleading. It is by no means limited to just "mornings". I think the term should more aptly be "all-day sickness" because honestly that's what it feels like to me. I feel like I am perpetually in a state of nausea. Most times it is controllable (meaning I can function although carefully and go about life) but there are moments where I need to just lie down till the feeling subsides. My appetite has been so strange too. I no longer cringe at the thought of dairy but am now literally disgusted by anything greasy. The other day just watching a tv commercial featuring Burger King french fries made me want to upchuck! And walking by the food court earlier made me imagine all sorts of greasy food, it was just too much for my sensitive nostrils to bear. I don't know why but even my favorite Puff Cheetos disgusts me (why do they have to be so bright orange!?).

I guess that's the good thing. So far I've been eating really healthy food. I am also over the craving for meat. During the last few meals, I am very happy with steamed tofu, fresh salads and bowls of clear soup. I've been really ravenous for fruits and Jojo has been indulging me. He's cut up fresh papayas, watermelons, nectarines and peaches. And has been washing fresh blueberries, strawberries and cherries whenever I have a hankering. Jojo has been extra indulgent too - doing the dishes, taking care of the laundry, picking up items at the supermarket, and making sure I am comfortable at all times. Aaah! I could really get used to this =)

Today I've been browsing some websites on pregnancy. Because we don't know yet how far along I am or when I am due, we are speculating that I am between 1-3 months. I've been looking at pictures of how big the baby should be at that stage. Really - just about the size of a jellybean (I guess). So I've started referring to the baby as "Jellybean". And Jojo has started doing that too. Like this afternoon, I woke up from a nap and Jojo comes into the room to ask if "Jellybean and I would like to go to the 5 PM or the 6 PM mass". Haha! - isn't that absolutely precious? Jellybean, it is then!

I guess we are not the only ones excited. So far we've only shared the news with immediate family (will definitely share it with all our loved ones once I see my doctor this week). But already the outpouring of love and acceptance for little Jellybean has been incredible. My family and Jojo's family have been so wonderful in their show of support. All I can say is Jellybean is one lucky baby to have such a great family waiting for him/her. And of course, we are equally lucky to have Jellybean come join us too =)

Saturday, August 07, 2010


We took a pregnancy test today ... it came out positive. The pregnancy kit claims it is 99% accurate ... so until I see my OB-GYN, I guess I am 99% pregnant. =) I don't know how to explain what I am feeling right now. I was in shock when the second line appeared on the stick. Jojo was at my side and his happiness was instantaneous. Mine took a few minutes before it sunk in! I called my mom right away but it was 5 AM Manila time so I didn't let the phone ring too long and when no one picked up, I called my sisters-in-law. Marik and Tracy. Jojo called his mom and his brother, Lee. I texted Atsi. When I spoke to people, that's when it started to feel real ... I cried when Marik cried. Good, happy tears. It's still surreal and I am still a bit dazed (which is why this post sounds so stilted). Anyway, more on all this when I catch my breath ...

But for now, all I can say is "thank you God and thank you dad!".

Wednesday, August 04, 2010

Blasé blah

For my readers (the last two or three of you), please do not react with any excitement, worry, glee, or anxiety over my post ... I wasn't even going to write about it but figured if I wanted to be true to the real reason for this blog (which is to "record" my "life" and have it serve as a journal for my thoughts, feelings and opinions), well, then, I should go ahead and write about the things happening to me in real time. Even if they may not be "ahem" confirmed yet. This is a really long caveat ... and if I've confused anyone, no worries, I'm not sure I am 100% clear about what I just wrote myself!

Anyway, here goes, since last Saturday I've been feeling weird. Not that I feel sick or bad ... but just weird. My stomach has been queasy for no reason. I feel like throwing up (it's different from feeling nauseous though). I just feel like throwing up would calm my upset tummy. I've been extra, extra lazy all Saturday and Sunday. Like sleeping all the time. After a full night's sleep (over 9 hours), I wake up for breakfast, watch some tv and nap the rest of the morning. We have lunch, I get a massage then I take an afternoon siesta. The rest of the day goes by in a blur of catnaps and lounging around the house - but by 10 PM I'm yawning again and can barely keep my eyes open. I didn't want to get off my lazy butt all weekend. Jojo had to do EVERYTHING. (Notice how I typed the word "EVERYTHING" in all caps?).

This week has been a bit better. I am still so sleepy but manage to wake up and go to work every day. Also, I've been okay at work. It helps that there is a lot to do and I've been distracted from feeling sleepy by being busy! Not feeling as queasy lately too but there are still moments (like today at lunch where looking at my chicken breast marinated in jerk seasoning made me want to throw up, so I had some clear soup instead). Eating smaller meals helps too. Still there are certain foods that just thinking about makes me sick. For example, anything dairy (just looking at the plastic tub of cream cheese and the leftover spaghetti carbonara in our fridge) makes me want to hurl! And I am craving MEAT. It's not just I feel like eating meat, but I want to devour a huge charbroiled plate of it! And not just chicken or turkey but a real, honest-to-goodness, grilled steak sounds awesome right about now! (Still have not indulged in this since we are eating our way through our freezer and we are out of red meat!).

Now is a good time to remind everyone, to please not react with any excitement, worry, glee, or anxiety over my post. It is TOO EARLY to contemplate the "P" word. Maybe it's not even the "P" word. I could just be going through a queasy-lazy-sleepy-lactose-intolerant-carnivorous phase. It is entirely possible!

Even if I've been "delayed" almost 2 months now (which technically does not mean anything since I can sometimes go 3 months without getting my period). This could be a fluke! =) I don't want to preempt anything or jinx anything. So anyway, long story short, I'm just stating the facts but am not expecting a reaction. I have been down this road so many times before that I don't want to raise my hopes and have them dashed again, I just wanted to share what's going on with me now and see where this takes me. It's all good either way.

I'm really honestly at the point where I am going to be super HAPPY to have a baby. But am equally OKAY if it's not yet the time for this blessing to come my way. I figured with everything going on, the additional pressure of "trying too hard" is something we can live without! =) To be honest, Jojo and I are, at this point, just taking it one day at a time and being blasé blah about it all. You know what I mean? =) Anyway, more updates to follow ...

Tuesday, August 03, 2010

Happy 5th Birthday, Junarakasa's Story

Because of all the recent hustle and bustle, I've neglected to celebrate my blog's 5th birthday! I can't believe "Junarakasa's Story" is now 5 years old (my blog officially turned 5 last July 20th). It's pretty amazing that I've been blogging for over 5 years now. What could I possibly have had to write about in all this time??? I had the morning relatively free so I took a trip down memory lane and re-read highlights of my blog. I found myself alternating between laughter and tears. So many wonderful memories! Of course there are the good and not-so-good memories. But all of which I will treasure nonetheless.

Happy 5th, Junarakasa's Story! Here's hoping I'll have it in me to keep going for another 5 years (or more!). To my dad, who I know is still reading my blog: this one's for you, Papitoof! =)


I was talking to my mom over the weekend and we discussed how there seems to be a move towards change in most of our lives. My Uncle Will and his entire family of 7 has migrated to Canada. My sister, Joy, may be moving to the States next year to pursue further studies. My mom is considering downsizing our home for a smaller place that would be easier to manage. And a host of others. Things I hold so familiar and dear, are changing. I am all for change and believe that change is good. But sometimes, change can be unfamiliar and disconcerting too. Sometimes I wish things would just stay the way they were - the way we are used to having them and are comfortable with. But more often than not, there are things beyond our control that acceptance and being positive are the only ways to get through what comes our way.

On my end, I also feel I've changed much over the years. For starters, I feel I am more accepting of what comes my way. My experiences, so far, have taught me, that sometimes no matter how we fight things, we have no control over them. And short of being frustrated and angry with life, we just have to go with the flow and make the best of situations. I used to be a very stubborn and strong willed person. Not to say, I am no longer as determined as before. But I think that with age, I have learned to mellow somewhat and understand that sometimes, we need to take what life sends our way and just live with it. There are always ways to make things better later on.

There are things in my life that I wish were different. But rather than focus on what's wrong, I instead choose to focus on what's right. I have so much to be thankful for and no matter how I look at it, the good things completely outweigh the bad. So instead of making mountains out of molehills and getting exasperated over what is not going my way, I would rather be grateful about what I have and find ways to compensate for what I don't. I think we are all dealt with our share of ups and downs. The only way to be happy is learning to balance the two and manage what we do with what we have.