Tuesday, March 30, 2004

The bean is about 2 inches long now, and we're one week away from the second trimester. This first trimester is going really fast. Well, fast for me. Slower for Susan. She is very ready to get past the extreme fatigue and the nausea. Our friends say the opposite about time. They're more of the vein "Haven't you had that bean yet?" Most were there with us in the beginning, listening to our tales of sperm selection and donor profiles and how you get used to reading through the lines of staff perception notes about donors and how we stayed away from the ones that were described as "quiet" and "serious" and how the donor repositories nickel and dime your money away. We're still deciding whether or not to fork over the 25.00 for the personality profile. I can see that now may not be the best time to buy the profile. What if we don't like the results?

Did you know that the Multnomah County Board Meetings are streamed live during the meetings and stored later on their website? Check out the March 25th broadcast. It was the first public hearing on same sex marriage. Find the screaming woman. Susan and I went to see a guitar player singer songwriter perform at Haven coffee shop on Division this past Saturday night. The performer mentioned attending the hearing and half yelled "I am an expert on lesbians..." one fist in the air mimicking the screaming woman. You want to respect that people have a right to say what they want to say, but the screaming woman was too outlandish from the outset to be taken seriously.

Monday, March 29, 2004

Happy Monday, all. I trust that the week is off to a good start for everyone. Sheryl and I had our second OB appointment on Friday last week. I was hoping for another ultrasound, but not this time. I believe the next big milestone is in about a month where we'll listen to the heartbeat. It's hard to believe that on Tuesday next week we'll be entering our 2nd trimester.

The nausea and fatigue continue - but at least the nausea is subsiding somewhat. I'm also starting to get the 'forgetfuls'. Today it manifested itself with losing track of my cell phone. My brain is so foggy; I'll be glad when I get it back.

I'll touch base again in a couple of days and give you an update on Bean's progress. Take care!

Sunday, March 28, 2004

I finally finished a painting I've been working on for over 3 years. It started off with a handful of blackberries on a piece of wood sitting in the sun in the back yard for a week. It's about healing.

Susan and I went to our second Doctor's visit last Friday. This is the view of the Freemont bridge out of our Doctor's office's waiting room. Pretty awesome. I'm sure I'll post up another photo journal entry at some point, but not tonight. Everything is progressing well with the pregnancy.

Another awesome image is one we see on the drive to the doctor's office. It's the Joan of Arc gold-leaf statue at SE 39th and Glisan in the roundabout.

Friday, March 26, 2004

I took vacation time and went to the public testimony at the Multnomah Building on marriage rights for same sex couples. Representative Steve March started it all off with great supportive statements. When I served on the Center Neighborhood Association board, Steve was the President. He's a good man with good values. Listening to the whole set of collective testimonies was hard. When you have to listen to ill-informed or hate filled and bigoted statements about gay life and people, it's depressing (or just down right weird as was the case with the screamer woman). Susan and I are planning to be a part of the testimonial group. This is our community. It's harder to get us both there together at the same time, but we're commited to doing that. We were loosely asking each other "What do we want to say?" last night when we consciously did a mind shift and watched a comedy series on dvd instead.

On to Bean things: Van, a co-worker of mine, offered this advice: "When you do select the name, don't tell anyone what it is." Opinions are too strong about names. People love them or hate them. Again, we're tyring to find some gender neutral name and right now I just write down names on the fly as I hear them. So far we have Joe, Taylor, Alex, Tore, Sam, Riley, Andy, Denali, Tepal, Beck, Gray, Kirby, Ronny, Trek, Guerin, and Trip. I keep pushing that "Charles" is not gender-specific, but Susan isn't having any of that.

Wednesday, March 24, 2004

Conversations overheard between young adults and their fathers (my assumption) in the airport seat banks two weeks in a row.

Last week:
man: "If you're referring to a girl, then you should use "dudette."
about a 12 year old guy: "Dude goes for both genders. Dudette is the stupidest word I've ever heard."

This week:
about a 17 year old young man: "I'd love it if they took the words 'under God' out of the pledge of allegiance."
man: "President Eisenhower issued an executive order to have those words added to the pledge of allegiance to make sure America was distinguished from the godless communists."
17 year old: "Well, then it definitely should be taken out if it wasn't even in there to begin with."

I love it that people have conversations with their kids about current events and other things. I'm ready to start talking to Bean now. Well, I am talking to Bean. But I'm ready to do some focused talking and playing of sounds. We haven't read ahead in our books or the babycenter info to find out when the hearing begins. In the near term I'll focus on reading some books I just purchased. Susan picked up a few dvds for me... experimental imagery and no sound movies that explore humanity. It's a perfect gift, especially right now as I realize that I'm searching to make sense of my own humanity in relation to what I consider the inhumanity of our current Presidential administration. What's really bizarre is that today a travel warning was issued for Americans travelling anywhere in the world. The book I'm going to read is Jhumpa Lahiri's interpreter of maladies.

Tuesday, March 23, 2004

Well folks - today marks being 10 weeks pregnant. It's hard to believe we are already 25% there! Here's what's going on with our little bean (from Babycenter.com):

"From crown to rump, your baby measures about an inch or two long. He's swallowing and kicking, and all his vital organs are formed, though they'll continue to develop throughout your pregnancy. In the next three weeks, your baby's length will double. In the meantime, more minute details are appearing, such as fingernails and peach-fuzz hair."

It's hard to believe how much the little bean has developed in just the last few weeks. The thing I think is the most awesome is that it's starting to move around. Of course, it will be several more weeks before I can feel it moving - but still - it's all so amazing!

I've been feeling just about the same these days - still a little bit of nausea in the evenings. Stress seems to make it worse. That, and not eating, of course. I'm averaging about 6 - count 'em - SIX meals a day. Small meals, of course - but it still feels crazy to have to work so hard to keep my blood sugar up.

I had an eye appointment the other day and the Dr. says that the blood sugar fluctuations actually impact vision - pretty odd if you ask me.

This Friday Sheryl and I have another OB appointment - I'm sure we'll have more ultrasound pictures to share with you all. Until then, have a fantastic week everyone.

Monday, March 22, 2004

Wow, the weekend went by so fast. This story is on Yahoo news about antidepressant use (10 brands specifically) with youth and monitoring an increased suicide risk. A ruckus was first raised in Great Britain last year. I think this is a sad story. I wonder how many youth had to commit suicide before it got to issuing a monitoring warning? I found this book at the library once entitled Toys that Don't Care about toys that are dangerous for children. Drug companies don't care. They have unbelievable lobbyists though. I wonder if this story will ever get the media attention it needs.

I went to the County Clerk's office today and paid $7.75 for a certified copy of our marriage license. They're on a two week turnaround delay. Susan and I now have three receipts. One for our domestic partner registration. One for our marriage license. One for our certified copy of our marriage license. Glad to see that HRC is finally mentioning the marriages in Oregon. Still no front page real estate devoted to Oregon though. Even though Portland is the only city in the entire nation issuing marriage certificates to same sex couples. Go Multnomah County! More than a few of us have been confused by HRC's lack of enthusiasm in covering the Oregon part of the marriage issue.

I talked to my parents Saturday. Dad is doing much better. He's at home now and they're increasing his blood pressure medicine and monitoring. Mom was full of questions about Susan and the baby and how Susan is feeling and what are we thinking about in terms of names and how is our doctor and are we going to have a natural birth... My parents are sometimes slow in coming around, but once they get there they don't suddenly change their mind about supporting us or avoid conversations about our marriage and pregnancy. I respect them for that. Besides, they seriously love and respect Susan and that makes me happy too. This will be my parents 11th grandchild. (Jason, Robin, Stacey, Shawn, Bryan, Heather, Ryan, Krystal, John, Amber). Mom won't come in at the birth. That's not what she does generally. My parents are more like magnets. Everything comes to them. Susan's mom is planning on coming up though and that's exciting.

We tried to make the peace rally in downtown portland on saturday but didn't get out of yoga in time. Check out the photos on Portland's Communique in the March 20th entry.

Saturday, March 20, 2004

Paul Mann conducted the symphony last night (and played piano quite a bit). The symphony was entitled Love Triangle: Music, Marriage and Madness. Mann streamed stories about Robert Schumann, Clara Schumann (and her father) and Johannes Brahms. The concert included music from all three. Clara apparently was quite the rage pianist in her time. Clara's father not only taught her piano, but was Robert Schumann's teacher as well. The marriage was betwen Clara and Robert after they applied to the court system for the right to be married (Clara's father was an odd man and he was opposed to the marriage). The madness was Robert Schumann's who died at the age of 47 after spending a few years in a mental hospital. Johannes was the friend of both Robert's and Clara's that took oversight of Clara and her 8 children while Robert was in the hospital. Clara and Johannes had a relationship. They destroyed almost all of their letters and documents in order to protect their privacy but some documents have managed to stay alive through letters to friends. Both Schumann and Brahms wrote musical notation into their compositions to spell out CLARA. Interesting stories. Inspiring music. What a great way to spend Friday evening. We're actuely aware of the changes awaiting in our future re. symphony attendance. Post baby, getting to the symphony will be much more of an event. Preparation, arrangements, etc. Right now it's so easy at less than 20 minutes from house to seat. We only go to about 10 performances a year. Our goal is to do something cultural at least once a month and then add from there as things come up. We try not to watch too much t.v. That's certainly a harder goal to achieve in the depths of winter than it is in the spring and summer.

After talking to a few banks and mortgage brokers recently, we finally, just yesterday, found someone we like. Can I tell you that banks only care about what they can provide to you. If you would be better served with a construction loan versus an equity line of credit, they often won't tell you that if they only do equity line's of credit. The short is, I'm happy to find someone who is laying out all of the options and will work with us to find the right one. That includes asking some questions to find out who we are and about our plans for the future. The construction bids should come back in late this week, hopefully.

Thursday, March 18, 2004

Happy Thursday, all. I trust all is going well for you. Life here in the Anderson household is just peachy. Sheryl and I had pizza and salad this evening from our local pizzaria. The nausea continues in the early evenings. Eating a bit of food usually does the trick - but it's those first few bites that is a bit tough.

I found a great new magazine called Mothering. It's about parenting in a sustainable household, etc. I liked it so much that I subscribed us for 3 whole years! Talk about impulsive! You can check them out at mothering.com.

Tuesday, March 16, 2004

I picked up the camera I left at work yesterday. Here's my favorite picture of folks lined up at noon when the doors opened at the Multnomah county building yesterday.

And here's my second favorite. It's a view from our floor window overlooking the Hawthorne bridge. Here's the deal. Cozy with Henry Miller cube furniture. Yesterday the sun was shining bright about 6 p.m. and I walked to the wall of windows and took this picture before heading home. Only I got distracted and left the camera there.

A Contractor came by this morning and did a tour and picked up the plans for bidding purposes. He won't have the bid back until late next week after he brings over some subcontractors too. Early estimate 3 to 4 months. He couldn't start until May. Already I'm feeling a little pressure. May start = September finish = one month before baby. And you know how the summer's just fly by here.

Monday, March 15, 2004

9 weeks tomorrow! The bean is growing and it has lost its tail. Webbed feet disappear now too and the hands can bend at the wrist. The genitals are forming but you can't tell what sex the baby is by ultrasound yet. You can see fingers and toes though. Also, its known as a fetus now. But we still call it bean. And Susan is still getting morning sickness but generally it's in the evenings, about 6 p.m. We had to leave the symphony at intermission on Sunday night. I talked to my mom today and she said she just had this feeling that Susan would have trouble with nausea. A particular nauseant for her is sea food. She about threw me out of the house when I made salmon for her one night! It's my mother's birthday today. It's not the greatest birthday for her. She's at home sick with a respiratory infection. Dad is in the hospital in Houston. He had a small stroke and they're doing assessment and testing. Dad is 10 years post heart transplant. So, it's pretty sad for everyone.

The Portland Communique is great. I'm so glad to have found it. A few words about today. First, Multnomah County Commissioners and the Chair are amazing! Besides that one Commissioner--you all know his name--who continues to live up to his reputation. Rod and I went downstairs at lunch time and chatted with a few people in line to get their marriage licenses. One East Coast couple told Rod that they had flown to San Francisco and were "in flight" when the cease order came. Then, they decided to head to Portland only to learn that a decision would be made on Monday noon. They were so excited to be allowed through the front entrance at noon. Many of those in line were from other states, but I quickly found one Portland couple. They said they normally aren't politically active but vowed to support the chair and commissioners in their re-election and/or possible recall situations. I took some pictures but left my camera at work. -Sheryl

Sunday, March 14, 2004

Well, folks - it's Susan here - back from the land of overwork and hectic travel. I spent the week in Dallas this last week and the combination of time zone changes, 15 hour days, lots of work and coordination to pull off a huge work event, and general pregnancy exhaustion have really taken a toll. I've done a good job of staying stress-free - but still recognized the need to take it easy this weekend.

Yesterday, Sheryl and I went to our first Prenatal Yoga class - it was great, but I'm definitely feeling tight muscles in unusual places. In general, the class is very gentle - which is great for us first-timers. I can see us sticking to this program throughout the pregnancy. The course is located in a natural foods store, which is perfect because afterwards we can go through the deli and eat lots of healthy food.

In the materials I've been reading, it says to hold on during this period of time while you are dragged along the emotional roller-coaster. Boy howdy, I guess so. Yesterday - within the span of 2 minutes - I found myself yelling at idiotic drivers (OK, that's not too unusual!) and then burst into tears as a funeral procession passed us on the street. Silly, huh? Consider this fair warning the next time you see me and I act a bit over-emotional.

One of my ex-bosses confessed that her activism started when she was in first grade in England. Margaret Thatcher had made some decision to cut breakfast funding and a group of first graders marched in a circle on their school playground protesting the decision. With milk containers raised in the air they chanted "Maggie Thatcher, Milk Snatcher!"

Peter and Laural came for dinner last night. Peter's racing team is currenly ranked # 1 in the state of Oregon. He's racing today at Hag lake and after coming off of 2 consecutive 2nd places in recent races, he's hungry for the 1st place prize. Peter thinks it's humorous that this gay marriage issue is making it impossible for people to hide their prejudices. Especially when they try to justify why they think that some groups can marry and others can't.

I hope the PRIDE flags will continue to fly at the Multnomah Building after Monday. Multnomah County's Chair Linn will hold a press conference. What's the gut feel on this one? It's hard to say. I spoke to her in the Red Wing cafe last Thursday and told her I realized it was a difficult time but that a lot of folks in the gay community and a lot of other folks are supportive. She talked about process and the recall. The recall effort has an impact, clearly. My hope is that she will have strength to stand up to Gov. Kulongoski. In my circles, at least, people have a lot more respect for Diane Linn than they did 4 weeks ago. Kulongoski, on the other hand, is losing supporters right and left.

I've been looking for some place to get news other than the oregonian (which i boycott) and the local tv station websites. Basic Rigths is good but sometimes a little slow on the uptake for breaking news. KBOO is definitely slow. So, in searching I think I finally found some places to get the news both timely and without the sensationalism or conservativism of tv stations or the oregonian. Check out the Portland Communique link. Good stuff.

Friday, March 12, 2004

Of course I'm disappointed with the opinions of Gov. Kulongoski and Atty General Myers. Kulongoski is the biggest disappointment. But I'm still trying to digest/understand what it all means. I'm picking Susan up from the airport in a few hours. She likely has not heard about the opinions yet as she is in flight. Remember, hope springs eternal... Basic Rights Oregon made a very clear, concise and hopeful statement I'd like to share with you all:

March 12, 2004

Basic Rights Oregon Press Statement

Today, the Oregon Attorney General Hardy Meyers found merit in our
position that the Oregon constitution does not permit discrimination
against same-sex individuals. Prior to today, three legal opinions
clearly indicated that such discrimination would violate the
constitution. In the wake Attorney General's opinion, Basic Rights
Oregon is emboldened by the fact that no credible legal opinions have
found that discrimination based on sexual orientation is permissible
in Oregon.

Basic Rights Oregon joins in the Governor's wish that this matter
receive speedy and final adjudication in the Oregon Supreme Court,
where we are confident the rights of gay men and lesbians will be
upheld. We speak on behalf of the more than 2,100 newlywed couples
and their families who have for the first time in Oregon's history
had the ability to protect their relationships and families through
marriage. We are disappointed that the Governor would encourage the
County to deny any Oregonian basic constitutional rights in the

Basics Rights Oregon will continue to do all it can to bring this
issue to a speedy and just resolution.

I love Fridays. Mostly because I'm off of work. A few friends have sent me emails surprised and pleased that County Commissioner Serena Cruz has personally responded to their emails. She's pretty awesome. Many in Northeast PDX are glad they voted for her in the last Commissioner election. Commissioners Rojo de Steffey and Naito are up for reelection in May this year and will likely face some hateful campaigns. There's an active movement to get enough signatures to recall Chair Diane Linn. This is shaping up to be a politically active year, folks. And I for one intend to be in the front of the line and active where it matters the most. Fanatic religious groups from other states like Mississippi are filing lawsuits in Oregon to stop same sex marriages and they're having rallies here in Portland. Archetypes are being questioned and in many ways falling down. These groups have wholesome sounding names like Liberty Group. Or just outrageous names like Fred Phelps' godhatesfags group. Want some crazy insane reading entertainment? Go to godhatesfags.com I'm reminded of philosophy 101 in college and the Professor saying the biggest problem with religious groups is that there's no "falsifiability" to what they say. With premises that are deemed "unfalsifiable," qualifiable or quantifiable data or logic that proves the premise false or weak and contradictory are simply ignored. Later! -Sheryl

Thursday, March 11, 2004

Wow. This week is the 8th week mark. The tail is fading. The arms and legs are emerging. Check out this blow-up. The baby is only about an inch long. That's crazy small for all this detail! This picture is from the babycenter.com.

You can't tell its gender yet. Wanna guess what gender it is? Susan and I have an inkling, based on GFI (gut feel index). We also have a list of names to share at some point. We're trying to go with names that are gender neutral. We're open to suggestions, if you want to send them on over. The email address for Bean is in the link section. Just try to stay in the gender neutral/nonspecific rule.

Tuesday, March 09, 2004

General thoughts:

Our friend April's daughter-in-law had tried to get pregnant for 2 years. Then she went to acupuncture and they got pregnant right away. Friend Tiffany put a bag down by her car, ran upstairs to her apartment to get a key, and came back down to a missing bag. Someone dropped a whole load of pizzas off at the Multnomah Building when Susan and I were about 2 1/2 hours in line to get our marriage certificate. Friends have been extremely supportive of our marriage. Family is luke warm to cold. Stumptown coffee is amazingly good. Try the Hairbender if you purchase beans. We are moving forward on the remodel. We're in the bidding phase now. Quite the process. Our architects are the best. We highly recommend the use of architects. It's no different than project management. The planning process rules supreme. We're thinking about friend C.K. who's Uncle died. Hope you all are well and happy. -Sheryl

Sunday, March 07, 2004

Friday we went to our new Doctor. Dr. Sally Holtzman. We liked her a lot. Very warm. She did an ultrasound of the bean and the measurements are right in line with an October 20th delivery date.

Then we went to the County, got our license and got married right then and there. See both sets of pics at http://www.sanfordanderson.com/words.htm

Susan is preparing for a conference this week. I'm sure she'll be back writing about the pregnancy soon. Can you believe we're almost 8 weeks? This is so exciting! This week we also start a Yoga class for pregnant couples.

Thursday, March 04, 2004

Hi everyone.

Tomorrow Susan and I are going to our first Doctor's appointment. I'm excited about the ultrasound.

Right after the appointment, we're going to the Multnomah County building and stand in line for our marriage license. People were still lined up at the tables and around the corners of the building today as you can see in the pictures below. Yesterday 422 licenses were issued; today something like 372 were issued.

Our friend, C.K., is performing the ceremony. We're getting the best emails and phone calls from our friends. My friend Vinesh in Houston assures me that everything in Texas is just fine and dandy with no poverty, hunger, pollution, political disarray, or anything else. Except they just can't abide those gay marriages. But don't worry about anything else, he says. Yep, everything is just fine in Texas. He cracks me up. Our friend Nancy just brought tears to our eyes with her special email. She's in a master's program and is student teaching 3rd graders currently. And trying to find time for school and work and Dave, her husband. Nancy--we have this image of you in our heads teaching 3rd graders! What fun for those kids.

Susan says hello. She's busy busy busy working on stuff. More soon.

Wednesday, March 03, 2004

Multnomah County has expanded its marriage license procedures to include same sex couples. I work in the County building where registration occurs, so I took a few photos today; check them out at http://www.sanfordanderson.com/words.htm

We're so excited! I'm excited. Susan asked me to marry her again last night. How sweet is that? Stay tuned folks!

Monday, March 01, 2004

Hello All: Sheryl here. I passed the PMP exam. Yippee! For those of you who don't know, that's the Project Management Professional Certification from the Project Management Institute (www.pmi.org).

So, I have a book recommendation for anyone and everyone. Alexander Tsiaras's _from Conception to Birth a Life Unfolds_ It's a bit expensive at about $35 US, but it's an amazing view into reproduction, fertilizatation, conception and genes.

There are lots of things going on in my head right now. First, I'm so excited about this bean. Susan and I poured through a thousand donors and scaled the list down to 800 and then went from there. It's hard to choose. Second, I'm really excited about this marriage movement in San Francisco. It feels energetic and volatile and I want to be on the other side of it all to see that it all shakes out okay. Susan and I are planning to call a lawyer who facilitates same-sex adoption. I wonder if heterosexual couples ever consider that they don't have to consider these things? Equality is about a lot more than a marriage license, but I am so glad that San Francisco is moving this issue forward in a positive way. It's so validating. Clearly, a constitutional amendment to outlaw gay marriage is absurd.