Thursday, December 31, 2009

happy new year! (week 2)

hello, and happy new year to you! this week, we found out that penny has made it back to her birth weight - this is great news! to date, she has had a manicure and a half, as one of her favorite games is to taunt us by pretending to gouge her eyes out. right now, she's asleep on my lap, getting ready to rally for midnight and 2010!
penny's resolutions include perfecting her neck control, getting her eyes focused, and spending more time being adorable.

from all of us at chez z, all the best wishes for a healthy amazing year full of new adventures!

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

please say hello to penny!

hello, blogosphere!
sorry for the extended silence, but we've been a little busy over here at chez z. on thursday, december 17th, at 4:19 am, we welcomed little penny ruth zalben into this crazy world. she is, of course, perfect and beautiful. she as born at 7 pounds 7oz and 20 inches - as of today's doctor's appointment she is 7 pounds 6 oz. she is a brilliant genius! her umbilical stump has fallen off! she produces gas like a champion!
i will do my utmost best to continue posting once a week, but please bear with me if i have no idea what day it is.
penny says hi to you all!

Thursday, December 10, 2009

week 38!

as of this morning, it just looks like i'm faking. seriously. just look at that belly.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

better preggo photos than we could ever take...

on halloween, we went to prospect park and met the photographer who shot our wedding, minwin.
i cannot recommend this man enough, people! guests of the wedding still ask about him as if they are old friends, and we knew we wanted to see him again for our maternity photo shoot. further ado? nuh uh!
lifemagical maternity gallery 1
lifemagical maternity gallery 2

ps - 80% effaced, 1cm dilated!

Friday, December 4, 2009

week 37!

this week started off at the doctor's office, where she told us that i'm 70% effaced, but not at all dilated. she thinks we're right on target so far as the due date is concerned. we are really enjoying trying to identify which lump is which, and part of our excitement over her impending birth is knowing for sure what part of her we're looking at (we fervently hope).
thanks to a very helpful fellow preggo over on, i found out that adding another pillow under my head at night stops both the snoring and the flopping about i was doing all night, leading to much better sleep! thank you again!

Saturday, November 28, 2009

week 36!

happy thanksgiving! obviously, we've got a whole lot to be thankful for over here at chez z. we hope you and yours are happy, healthy, and feeling as good as we are!
this week started off with a bang, when we went to our (now weekly) doctor's appointment, and she felt the baby's head! the baby is in position, ready to go, though the doctor still thinks she's on schedule. of course, on schedule means she's due in UNDER FOUR WEEKS, not that we're counting.
also, at the beginning of the week, baby z got a new cousin! our huge congrats to my cousins l. and j. who welcomed a 7lb 2oz baby boy into their lives on tuesday. we can't wait to meet him!
as you can see from the photo, i have gone from pregnant to ludicrously pregnant. this is the first week (possibly of my lifetime) that it's become difficult to sleep; both because it's hard to find a comfortable position, and because she loves to cha cha cha on my various internal organs. when i'm awake, it's quite fascinating and very dramatic to watch huge lumps appear and recede in my abdomen, but when it's late at night, it is very distracting from the matter at hand.
we are spending our long thanksgiving weekend doing things that are very exciting for us, but perhaps not so exciting to read about. we washed all of the size 0 - 3 month clothes. we washed the crib sheets and made the baby's bed. we're going to pack a hospital bag tonight.
it's pretty amazing to think that in a month or so, we'll get to meet this little person!

Thursday, November 19, 2009

week 35!

woo hoo! this weekend i was surprised with a beautiful shower thrown by the baby's aunt (my little sister) j. i was tricked, bamboozled and LIED TO by many friends in order to pull this off, and i couldn't have been more pleased. i am so excited that little baby z is already so loved by such an amazing group of folks.
in other news, her movement is now ridiculously visible, and i spend most of my commute watching my belly. on a conference call yesterday, i spent a good five minutes hanging on to er elbow, possibly her knee. it's all too exciting.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

week 34!

well, it's sort of undeniable now, i am definitely pregnant. this week i really started to feel it, too; i can't catch my breath, i am tired all the time, and generally feeling huge. still not complaining, though - alex takes incredible care of me, and work is being very understanding and accommodating.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

week 33!

exciting news this week - we're pretty sure we held the baby's hand! or maybe her foot! we still can't tell! we had a very happy halloween, handing out massive amounts of candy, watching the parade, and taking maternity photos in the park. i'm not going to share them here, as our own photo taking skillz are unparalleled, but once the photographer posts them, i'll post a link to where you can view them.
as you can see, the batman book has now been eclipsed! obliterated! the baby is now BIGGER THAN BATMAN.

Friday, October 30, 2009

week 32!

we started off this week with our last monthly ob/gyn visit - we're going bi-weekly now! we had a surprise sonogram! the doctor took three measurements - ear to ear, her femur, and...uh...something else, and those three measurements were plotted onto four graphs. these graphs showed what percentile of growth the baby's in, and let me tell you - she could not be more average. she is spot on. 50th percentile all the way. in all four graphs. it is almost comical.
i met with a pediatrician on tuesday, and think that that's who we're going with. it's nice to have that taken care of. in movement news, there have stopped being constant jabs, and we've moved on to a sort of scraping rolling. it's quite something.
work threw me a baby shower, which was lovely and i was so surprised!
and of course, i and the baby both have to wish alex the happiest of birthdays. he is totally loved.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

week 31

the baby's movements have reduced in frequency, but upped in intensity. she now has a couple of "awake" periods a day, and they're relatively predictable. this doesn't mean there isn't the occasional kick or jab, though, just to keep me on my toes.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

week 30!

this week, alex went to LA, which threw off my sense of timing for the week. i apologize for the late post - everything is completely fine, and the baby is more active than ever. the first night alex was away, i put my phone on speaker, so he could talk to her as usual, and when he asked ifshe wanted a souvenier, she kicked him right in the phone. she now has a tiny "hollywood princess" pink leopard clutch purse.
also, i can no longer trust her (that joke's for you, dad!).

Thursday, October 8, 2009

week 29!

this week kicked off with a really lovely baby shower thrown by baby z's grandmothers. besides being a gorgeous day, with wonderful food and company, the baby made off like a bandit. she is going to be fashionable, comfortable, warm and well fed, and for that we thank everyone.
something happened this week where lots of people think i'm way more pregnant than i am. i was told that she looks like she's dropped - PEOPLE! i've got months to go! she is definitely not twins! you are not helping! i am totally average looking for 29 weeks! haveyou all forgotten? is this weird wishful thinking on your part? are my clothes contributing to some sort of illusion?
please comment and tell me i'm going to make it to at least 37 weeks. while i'm sure i'll be glad to not be pregnant soon enough, having baby z 11 weeks premature would NOT make me happy....

Friday, October 2, 2009

week 28!

it's getting colder here in NY, so i am now wearing long sleeves! the baby is active absolutely all the time, and while it's fun connecting with her and imagining what she's doing in there, i do feel a bit like a punching bag.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

week 27!

on tuesday, the baby did not stop kicking all day. all day. the whole day. and when i got home, alex felt a few minutes of what i'd been talking about. we have a very feisty baby in there, and it seems a shame that the only way she can express herself is through violence.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

week 26

we just got back from breastfeeding class, and had aunt jodi and eric over for desserts! baby LOVES desserts! at the beginning of the week, we had our childbirth class - so now we're entirely prepared, right? there's nothing else to learn?

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

week 25! success!

if success is measured by whether or not one's belly reaches the batman book, that is...

this week we took the glucose tolerance test, and it wasn't nearly as bad as i had feared. i got fruit punch flavor, and it tasted just like kool-aid. not something i would drink every day, but not gag inducing, either. according to the doctor, my swollen feet, growing rear, and ashkenazi heritage combine to make me a prime candidate for gestational diabetes, so we're waiting and hoping to not get a phone call later in the week. the baby has upped her kicking quite a bit, and for most of today i felt like she was trying to make a break for it.
i also decided that i hated all of my clothes, so i bought myself some new tops and a skirt to make myself feel better. next up - haircut! i haven't had one since march!

Friday, September 4, 2009

you gotta see it to believe it!

after last night's post, alex and i spent a good 10 minutes watching my belly - because now we can SEE the baby move. from the OUTSIDE. who knows what sort of havoc she's wreaking in there - we just know it's super awesome to watch my tummy jump around.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

week 24!

so let's do a little math. 24 weeks. each month has 4 weeks. 24/4 = 6. this means that i am 6 months pregnant. yowza. we had our first anniversary this week, and went out for a lovely dinner. right now, the baby's going crazy!

edited because i accidentally used week 23's photo again - sorry for the outfit duplication.

Friday, August 28, 2009

week 23!

we're at week 23 now, and the baby is starting to get a room! we spent last weekend reorganizing and moving furniture around. this weekend we're doing some baby furniture shopping, and it's all getting more and more real.

Monday, August 24, 2009


so i'm pretty sure that at this point last week, i had visible ankle bones. just sayin'.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

week 22!

ok - there's definitely a baby in there. she really loves dairy, and will punch me in the guts very vigorously after my 3pm yogurt. alex can generally feel her once a day or so, and he's been telling her stories and recapping top chef for her, so she'll be totally prepared to enter our lives once she's born.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Picture Time

I'm going to present these without commentary, except for two points:

1) The bottom pictures are 4D (yup, four dimensions. This baby is a TIME BABY) representations of her face.

2) That is her foot next to her head. No, we don't know how she did that, either, but we're pretty sure she's going to be a gymnast. Or a magician.

You can click the pics for a larger view...

week 21!

we are officially past the halfway mark, and had two doctors appointments this week. the first was a standard ob appointment, where we go to hear the baby's heartbeat, and chat with our delightful babydoc. on tuesday morning, we went for our second ultrasound - a full anatomic scan. while the technician was measuring bones and orbits and whatnot, we were enraptured by the baby-ness of our baby. so much so that i nearly squeezed alex's hand clean off.
the big news, besides everything being fine, is that we are officially having a girl, and baby z is no longer an "it". she's now a "she". weird! she's kicking at least a little bit every day, and never stopped moving on the ultrasound.
baby baby baby!

Monday, August 10, 2009

baby z just got her first built in friend!

congratulations to our friends and neighbors, the lawrences, who just welcomed their new baby girl into the world. she'll be baby z's best friend or else.

Saturday, August 8, 2009

I Get A Kick Out of You

For the past few days, Marni has actually been feeling the baby move around in her stomach (I know, I know, it's not really the stomach -- it's the stork's pouch), but until tonight, I hadn't been able to feel it.

Tonight, I actually felt the baby kick.

I think that's supposed to be kind of a big life moment or something, and let me tell you... It was, actually, pretty spectacular.

It's a little weird to think, if Marni had a tapeworm, or if she swallowed half a bookshelf, and I could feel it sticking out of her tummy, that wouldn't be a cause for celebration. But this definitely is. I can't wait to meet the baby in earnest, and let him/her kick me in person.

Side note: Since Marni can only occasionally feel the baby moving around, the current theory is that s/he likes food, boats, and Top Chef Masters (technically, a subset of food).

Friday, August 7, 2009

week 20!

i can definitely feel the baby moving around in there now - totally different from the bubbles i was feeling a few weeks ago. this basically feels like someone poking me from the inside, which makes more sense. i'm still very sleepy, and last night i had a wicked craving for potato salad. mayo deficient?

Thursday, July 30, 2009

week 19!

according to the websites, baby z is about six inches long, and in A.'s words, now has 12 points of articulation. NERD JOKE!

Thursday, July 23, 2009

week 18!

oh boy - i'm pretty sure this means we're about halfway there. four and a half months, right? anyhoo, here's your photo:

Monday, July 20, 2009

i had no idea...

so it has come to my attention that people actually READ this blog, which makes me think it might need a little more content.
A. and i were doing a lot of cleaning this weekend. we are trying to get rid of stuff, consolidate, maybe have a stoop sale...
one of the things we have a lot of is books! lots of books! there are "bedroom" books and "living room" books, and when we moved in to the apartment two years ago, we just threw all of the books on shelves and kept promising ourselves we'd organize them someday. on saturday, we figured we'd at least try to put books from the same series together, and take a serious look at what we've got duplicates of so that we could get rid of some.
we did the bedroom first, collecting the bedroom harry potters to move into the living room; same with the series of unfortunate events, which got split up as well.
"wouldn't it make sense" we thought "to put children's books on the lower shelves?" and some rearranging began. it was only as i was holding two handsful of paperbacks that i realized that I WAS MESSING WITH THE BABY BUMP SHELF! i put all of the books back EXACTLY as i had taken them out, and the batman book never actually got touched in this situation.
so even if i'm not updating you super frequently, i am always thinking of you. the shelves above and below may look slightly different, but that batman book has not been moved. i'm still sticking with week 25 or so before i get there.
we shall see!

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

not THOSE bubbles


we went to the babydoc last night, and got to hear baby z's heartbeat, which is just the coolest thing ever. as it turns out, what i thought was the baby moving around was probably gas. that's fine. the baby is growing well, everything is chugging along as it should be, and A. and i are thrilled with the entire process.
i am in love with my new full body pregnancy pillow - it has made my hip pain completely disappear. plus, i used it to prop myself up while reading in bed last night. i will be using it long past pregnancy, i'm sure.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

week 16 photo - plus a special guest

creeping towards the batman book - terrible posture due to lack of yoga last week. hopefully fixed by now.

also! we had a special guest last night - baby's first cousin, little m!

Tuesday, July 7, 2009


i don't want to alarm anyone, but it feels like there are little bubbles rising up in my insides, and i think i MIGHT be feeling the baby.
let's all remain calm, shall we?

Thursday, July 2, 2009

week 15 photo

not quite to the batman book yet, steve...we'll see what happens at week 16!

Monday, June 29, 2009


while IMing with baby's future aunt j. in regards to my inability to remember my address today:

j: bad baby
go to your womb

that is all.

Monday, June 22, 2009


in celebration of our first baby z blogging day, i present to you a collage of this morning's ultrasound photos; another zalben/zalben collaboration:

Fathers Day

Hey everybody, A. here, the guy who's 50% responsible for Baby Z.

Unlike MOST expectant father's out there (you know who I'm talking about), I've tried to be as involved in this process as possible, from blogging (natch), to going to appointments with M., to holding the baby in my uterus while M. takes a nap.

On a related note, using our initials really makes me feel like we're in a Bond movie called "Nine Months Is Not Enough."

Anyway, as M. mentioned, now we kind of sort of know the sex of the baby, it's mainly about deciding on names. However, since she already covered that in her post, I'm going to suggest you comment with your best Baby Bond movie name. Then when we have a name for the baby, and a name for the movie, I'll photoshop a movie poster.

By the way, M. loves stuff like this. Loves it.

Blog is go!

hello, blogosphere!

ever since announcing our pregnancy, A. and i have been asked "when are you going to start a blog?" the answer, my friends & family, is today. we started off the day with a nuchal translucency screening, which went extremely well. we got to see the baby, we saw actual thumb-sucking, and were told that the baby is cute. also, without giving us the official word, our technician let us know that the baby is, in all likelihood, though it could change at any moment, a girl.

leave name suggestions in the comments - we're leaning towards "m" names, but are open, and any suggestions including middle names will be looked upon favorably.