Blog Archive

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Totally Not Legit Restaurant Yelp Reviews

Today's post is a review of a few restaurant experiences I had recently. Please note that there's a reason they are here on this blog rather than on Yelp: because they are completely ridiculous and have no business whatsoever being on the real internet where actual people might read them. But at the same time, they're in keeping with some actual reviews I have seen people post. Because the world is full of people who are ridiculous ALL THE TIME and they aren't even doing it on purpose to be funny. They're really like that. Blows my mind.

Review 1:
Steamers Seafood Cafe

Steamers is a little seafood restaurant down by the Tacoma Narrows bridge. We went there recently with the whole family, and they gave us a set of crayons and a picture for Audrey to color while we waited for our food.

Since Halloween is fast approaching, the picture they gave us was of a few jack-o-lanterns. Audrey wanted me to help her color them, so I looked through the cup of crayons and discovered that there was no orange crayon.

How the f*** am I supposed to color jack-o-lanterns without an orange crayon.

I tried coloring it yellow and then coloring red on top of it so that I could make orange the old fashioned way, but crayons don't really work that way and it looked like crap. Then I tried to color the pumpkin's hat but the darkest color I had was this light fawn gray.

That pumpkin looked like a pale idiot with a sunburn wearing a stupid hat.

Was the food good? Yeah, sure, but that's not the point. My experience was already ruined by that fugly non-orange pumpkin.

Due to this totally irrelevant and unimportant detail, I give this restaurant one star.

Review 2:
Red Robin

We went to Red Robin for a birthday lunch for me and my niece. Unfortunately, I am still constrained by the dairy-free diet that Princess Trevor has forced me into, so my menu selections were limited somewhat. Plus, I was feeling pretty fat from eating a lot of junk food recently, so I decided to go with a salad.

They had one salad that looked really good and I figured if I got it without the cheese on it, I would be safely dairy free. So I ordered it and specified no cheese.

When my salad arrived, it had no toppings whatsoever on it. Literally just a plate of lettuce with blackened chicken and balsamic vinaigrette on the side.

The waitress came by the table to ask how everything was, and I pointed at my sad salad. She immediately recognized the problem and went to the kitchen to retrieve a plate full of all the salad fixins that had been left off my plate (somehow, the "no cheese" directive had been misinterpreted to mean "no toppings at all"). She was back within thirty seconds, and my salad became delicious.

But still ... for like 1.5 minutes there I had a salad that was just lettuce, chicken, and dressing.

It was awful. I still wake up at night sometimes remembering it.

Due to this minor error which was swiftly corrected, I give this restaurant one star.

EDIT: I forgot to mention, because it was my birthday, they sang their birthday song and gave me and my niece each a free ice cream sundae (which cost no money and was free and also did not require payment).

I CAN'T EAT ICE CREAM YOU ASSHOLES; I'M ON A DAIRY FREE DIET. WTF am I supposed to do with a free birthday ice cream sundae???! I gave it to Audrey to eat instead while I sat there in sadness. Worst birthday ever. I'm changing my review from one star to ZERO STARS.

Review 3: 
Crockett's Pub

We went to this local eatery for breakfast one day, and once again I was subjected to the misfortune of not being able to eat dairy. Do you know how sad breakfast can be without dairy? No butter, no milk, no whipped cream on waffles, no coffee creamer, no cheese. Pathetic.

Well anyway, I looked through the menu and decided that my smartest choice would be to get an omelette, since they usually have enough ingredients that I won't miss the ones I can't have. The omelette that I ordered came with avocado, tomato, bacon, scallions, some other stuff probably, and then a healthy dose of Gruyere cheese.

Of course, I had to order it without the Gruyere cheese.

It tasted okay without it, but I know it would have been way better with the cheese on it. I'm really disappointed with how it turned out. Also, I'm disappointed that my decaf coffee had to be consumed black, and I'm disappointed that I couldn't share any of Audrey's cinnamon Belgian waffle with whipped cream on it.

Due to my own dietary restrictions and the negative impact they had on the deliciousness of my meal, I give this restaurant one star.

What do you think, guys? Do I have a future as a restaurant critic? You don't have to answer; I already know I'd be great at it.

Thursday, October 15, 2015

The indignities of pregnancy: the aftermath

Since I plan on never being pregnant again, this is well and truly the FINAL installment of "The indignities of pregnancy." Are you crying? Me too!!

I am now over eight weeks postpartum with Trevor, and things have pretty much returned to normal in my body. My life has achieved a new routine, and things are going well. Trevor is adorable.

But there are still indignities. Pregnancy aftermath. And they are real, and I am here to tell you about them (at least, the ones that have impacted me in particular).

"Stress Incontinence"

After Audrey was born, even though I tore from bow to stern giving birth to her, I never had any issues with things leaking when they weren't supposed to. Pee and poo both stayed in until I told them it was okay to come out.

But the second kid ... the second kid did me in. And multiple people told me it might happen, but I didn't listen.

You see, I thought I was special. Different. I did my kegels, I was fiercely strong in my pee-holder muscles, and I never ONCE peed a little while pregnant, even when I sneezed aggressively or held a squat position.

But then Trevor was born. And things went south on me.

For the first couple of weeks, I had what is called "urge incontinence," which is when you go from "I kinda have to pee" to "I am now peeing my pants" in literally less than one minute. It was like having a newly potty-trained toddler, except the toddler was my own bladder. And the instant that little fella started whining "Momma I hafta potty!", I had to find a bathroom RIGHT AWAY or else it was going to be a problem.

But then the urge incontinence went away, and life was good again. I figured I was in the clear.

So then I decided to go jogging.

And I was not in the clear :-(

The doctor said it should hopefully get better within a couple of months. But the other moms I've talked to said that they STILL can't do jumping jacks or join their kids on the trampoline, even though their kids are 3+ years old.

This may just be my life now. Putting on a maxi pad before Zumba class so that I don't make a puddle on the floor.

It is not dignified. Not dignified at all.

These stretch marks persist

I wrote previously about the stretch marks that appeared on my belly button towards the end of my pregnancy. I was not pleased with them.

Well, I am happy to report that the skin crumpling phenomenon I was worried about did NOT happen ... so there's that.

But those stretch marks are still there, and they're still pissed off. They're still drunk and belligerent. Maybe they're not inviting any more friends to join their party, but they don't need to -- they're plenty bad enough on their own.

Also I just realized it looks like I'm wearing underwear in this picture. But I'm not -- that's my hand in the corner. I'm wearing pants. Actual pants. I just thought you should know.

I put Shea butter on them every day and hope that they'll fade at least a little by bikini season. But if they don't ... eh, I'll still wear a bikini anyway. Eff it.

My belly button is permanently larger now

Apparently, being inside-out for like six months is hard on a belly button.

I used to have this adorable tiny little belly button that you could barely get your pinkie finger into. Now, it's the size of two index fingers. 1.5 thumbs easy.

I need to get a bigger belly button ring, because the one I've got in there now just looks like a pebble in a coal mine. Sad day.

Spontaneous milk letdown is real

You know how in TV shows, nursing mothers always hear a crying baby and immediately soak through their bra and shirt with milk? And it's a hilarious punchline??

I kind of thought that was a myth just like the whole every-labor-starts-with-water-breaking TV trope. But it's not a myth. It's totally real.

Well, the part about soaking through the shirt is a myth, because I constantly wear nursing pads in my shirt. If you're a nursing mother and you DON'T wear nursing pads in your shirt, you're kinda asking for it. That's like walking around with no pad in your underwear during your period. Or going to Zumba class without a pad after recently giving birth (did you like how I just referred to a joke I made earlier in this blog post, within the same blog post? Meta as hell.).

Still though, I will regularly feel the milk let down on its own. If I'm talking about nursing, it'll happen. (in fact, I fully expect it to happen at some point before I finish writing this section). If Trevor gets too close to me and he hasn't nursed in a while, it'll happen. And sometimes, it'll just happen for no reason whatsoever while I'm perusing Facebook and looking at pictures of the renovations someone did to their house. I guess my boobs just like the new granite countertops they installed?

Thank god for the disposable nursing pads, or this would be VERY undignified.

My boobs are ridiculous

Speaking of boobs and nursing ... oh lord. Okay, so when I say "ridiculous," I don't mean "huge." If they were huge, I wouldn't consider that an indignity. I could consider that awesome.

No, no; something much less flattering is going on in my shirt.

You see, it's very common in nursing mothers for one boob to outperform the other. They're like sisters but one of them is the valedictorian and the other one gets pregnant at 15 and drops out of school to work for Amway.

For me, the right boob got accepted to Stanford, while the left boob wonders if you have a moment to talk about a great investment opportunity.

This means that ol' righty is twice the size of lefty. LITERALLY TWICE THE SIZE.

I don't even know what to do about this. I was looking at proper nursing bras yesterday (the ones I wear are more like sports bras -- no cups, no underwire, just pure comfort) and I realized that there was no way I'd be able to wear one of those. I'd have to buy two different ones and Frankenstein them together.

I guess I'll stick with the sports bras. And maybe stuffing a sock in the left side. There's nothing wrong with being 30 years old and still stuffing your bra. Right?

... right?

Ugh. He's worth it and I love him and I'd do it all again in a heartbeat and so on ... but c'mon now. Can't I at least get TWO honking hooters out of it? Is that really asking so much??

He's worth it. He's worth it. He's worth it.

The full collection of past issues of "The Indignities of Pregnancy":

Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Adventures in milk protein allergy: A rant about the dairy-free life

Every baby has something about them that is less than perfect. Maybe they have colic, maybe they have reflux, maybe they are a terrible sleeper. 

With Trevor, the major factory defect is that he has a milk protein allergy. Any protein that comes from milk that isn't human (so cows, sheep, goats, cats if you're weird) will cause an allergic reaction in him and will inflame his little tiny baby intestines. The poor thing; I can't imagine how uncomfortable that must be, especially since he has no control over what he eats.

But this post isn't really about Trevor. Today's post discusses the myriad ways in which his milk protein allergy has annoyed me.

For starters, there was diagnosing the problem. Trevor has been exclusively breast-fed since birth, but his weight gain in the first few weeks was less than ideal. I figured I was having supply issues like I was with Audrey, and got all upset and dejected again like I was failing at this whole feeding-my-child thing AGAIN even though this time I was doing EVERYTHING right.

The real canary in the coal mine that led to the whole milk protein allergy diagnosis, however, was his poop. It was green and mucousy like someone very ill had sneezed into his diaper. You're welcome for that mental image.

Image result for sneezing person clipart
Why did I do this.

So, after some back-and-forth with the lactation consultants and pediatrician, it was decided that the best thing would be for me to cut all dairy out of my diet and see if that improves things for him. The ol' Dr. House approach of diagnosis through treatment.

So that is what I have been trying to do: stop consuming dairy in any form. And it has been harder than I expected.

Breakfast is a pain in the ass. I used to start every day by drinking a Slim Fast chocolate shake, because it was full of protein and vitamins and bought me some time to get real food into my body.

But hey, wouldn't you know it? Slim Fast chocolate shakes are made with milk. Oh, and when you're dealing with a milk protein allergy, you can't have soy either. So replacing this with a soy milk substitute was out of the question.

OK, no problem… I'll just drink almond milk instead. 

Oh, except almond milk has no flipping protein in it whatsoever. It's basically just chocolate flavored sugar water. OK, no problem… I'll just add protein powder to my almond milk.

Oh, except whey protein is pretty much pure milk protein. So I can't have that. OK, no problem… I'll just order some milk-free soy-free protein powder from Amazon.

Image result for orgain organic protein plant-based powder
Uhhh ... yum?

The protein powder I got uses protein from peas. F***ing peas.

Image result for peas
Look at em, all frozeny and pea-like.

For some reason, this offends me greatly. I hate peas. They are gross. Their very existence is an abomination. They pollute shepherds pie and ruin pasta dishes. They are unforgivably foul vegetables. 

And yet here I am making chocolate protein shakes with PEAS.

The upside, I guess, is that the shake tastes so weird and there's so much going on in it that I can just add a scoop of Brewers yeast (which is good for milk supply, but tastes foul and sour like an old fart in a gym sock) and I can't even taste it amongst all that weird pea protein noise. In other words, the pea protein tastes so bad that I can add more bad-tasting things to it and I can't taste how bad they are. I should leave a review online.

I got breakfast from McDonald's one morning. I had an Egg McMuffin, but I couldn't have butter on it and I couldn't have cheese on it. So it was just two dry English muffins with an egg and a slice of ham. Deeeeeelicious. 

Oh, and I had to drink black coffee with it because of course I can't have dairy creamer either.

I made cupcakes for Audrey's birthday. I could not eat them.

They even looked marginally like the Sesame Street characters they were supposed to resemble!

My mother brought over fancy gourmet cupcakes for Jesse's birthday, and I had to sit next to everyone at the table and watch while they ate them. Audrey kept twisting the knife by repeating "it's good!" while eating hers. I allowed myself a sniff of the salt caramel cupcake. It smelled like Audrey was probably right. :-(

We had individual English muffin pizzas at Audrey's birthday party. I had to make mine with no cheese. PIZZA WITH NO CHEESE. What fresh hell is this??!?! There were sliders, too. I bet they were delicious. But I wouldn't know.


Now, after all this bitching, you might be wondering why I don't just give Trevor formula instead and avoid all of this. And the answer to that is the next phase of this rant.

Babies with a milk protein allergy cannot drink regular formula. They have to drink formula that is specially made for this specific allergy. And that formula is 1. Expensive as f***, and 2. Tastes so awful that even a newborn baby knows better than to drink it without a fight. I accept that this expensive and disgusting formula will be a part of our lives for the next year, but I would much rather make breastmilk the largest part of his diet for long as I can. Because breastmilk is free. (if you exclude the cost of the anguish I feel when I see cake and ice cream and can't have even a tiny bite or else my baby will shit blood)

So basically, I've just been sentenced to a full year of breast-feeding when my original intention was to maybe make it six months, if that. And I have to train Trevor to drink the disgusting formula by using this ridiculous supplemental nursing system where I mix formula, put it in a little bottle, and then attach this to a skinny little tube like an IV and attach this to my nipple so that when Trevor latches to breast-feed like normal he actually drinks this disgusting $30 formula instead of breast milk. 

This is not me, obviously. But just looking at this contraption should be enough to make you hate it for how complicated and annoying it is to use.

So basically, for one feeding every day Trevor thinks my breast milk tastes rancid. But, he does drink it. And then, over time, I need to start mixing this rancid formula with actual breast milk in bottles, and forcing him to drink this until he can actually stomach the taste of the expense crap.

And then there's his poop. I am constantly staring at his poop to see if this dairy-free diet is actually working. One of the major symptoms, besides the green mucus poop, is that there will be small tinges of blood in the stool. So that means every time Trevor poops, I end up holding the diaper up to my face so that I can stare deeply into the goo and look for traces of blood. I hold poop diapers four inches from my face to examine their contents.

This is madness.


But ... when baby's health is on the line, alas I will do what I need to do.

I just don't need to be happy about it.


YOU'RE A C***.