Wednesday, May 15, 2013

What happened to NiCLO?

Hey y'all! I know, some of you may have been wondering "what happened to NiCLO?"

Well....THIS happened....

Ze Bebe is expected to arrive October 28th! 
Bebe obviously takes after us, hamming it up, even in the ultrasound(see that tongue sticking out?)

It's a wonderful blessing and we are thrilled! However, our lives have already dramatically changed. This foodie couple has now been transformed into a foodie husband and a very picky eater. I am even more picky than my infamous #1 blog fan and brother! I never thought I would see the day. However, for the last few months, I have only been able to stomach about 5 things; macaroni and cheese, cheese pizza, yogurt, cereal and only one Vietnamese specialty..... 

nước chanh
aka Lemon Juice
aka Lemonade

I am sorry to let you down, fellow foodies, but I promise, I am slowly getting my groove back. Or, rather, creating a brand new groove with our awesome kid.

We have been having a lot of fun planning for the Bebe's arrival. Let me first explain why we call the baby "Bebe." In Hanoi, my best option OB doctor is a French woman. She is lovely, and she makes me feel lovely too. Each time I see her, it's a stream of consciousness, that sounds like this:

 "Oh! Ah-lo! Ah-lo bebe! Ze bebe eez zo perfect! Ze placenta is beautee-ful! Ze bebe eez measuring beauteefully. Oh you look zo chic ma-ma! Oh la la! You need to gain ze weight, and zen I will tell you to lose ze weight later on! Ok? Ok! Zuch a busy bebe!"

It's pretty entertaining. Sometimes, a bit challenging, for example, yesterday she asked me if I am having contractions, and I said "I don't know, what do they feel like?" and she says "Tightening." Um...I am pretty sure EVERY pregnant woman feels tightening as their bellies grow, but that is all she could explain to me. I am just grateful I have an OB in Hanoi. The plan is to come home to tropical Des Moines, IA to deliver the bebe in September-after Christmas. If you told my 18 year old self I would be moving back to Iowa, she would be shocked. Yet, my 18 year old self has no clue how awesome DSM is these days(no sarcasm here, I am really excited about it!)

me and ze bebe at 15 weeks in my first maternity purchase

Hubs and I have been laying pretty low. A few weeks ago I went to CLO training in Bangkok, where I got to meet 18 other women who work the same job as I do at Embassies throughout Asia & Central Asia. I made some great new friends and learned a lot! 

I also got to do what any normal person would do in Thailand:

It was amazing, if you are ever in BKK and need a fix, check out La Monita
The service is slow, but the food is amazing, and my counterparts say the margaritas are too!

We are also approaching "Summer" in Hanoi. Yesterday, it was 95 degrees with 71% humidity. I thought I was going to die, but then I remembered that I DID use to teach hot yoga for 6 years and perhaps it was all preparing me for this life. 

On the plus side, we have been having some really beautiful sunsets....

Last week


I am really grateful for the sunsets, because tonight it made me remember that I have the option to choose: I can choose to focus on complaining about the heat *OR* I can open my eyes and enjoy a really beautiful sunset off my balcony. I can choose to complain about the smells of the city or I can choose to rejoice that I have a job I really love. I can choose to be homesick for my loved ones back home or choose to be grateful for the amazing partner that I have by my side. 

So, my friends; What really happened to NiCLO? Well, I guess I was choosing to have a little pity party for myself and not write about my recent challenges. I was so focused on feeling sick and pregnant & other first year abroad "stuff" that I think-know-I was missing out. For now, I am back to blogging and even more grateful for the challenges of expat living and the wonderful lessons I have learned so far. (I am also writing this all down to remind myself the next time I have a pity party!)

See you SOON!


  1. I also became a VERY picky eater in my first trimester (which was really sad because I normally love food). I have to say, the nausea + lack of appetite was really hard and I'm not sure I dealt with it very gracefully. Hang in there and hope you feel better soon! I know we will forget all about these hardships once our sweet babies arrive! :)

  2. I am reading this very late, but completely get your focus on gratitude for dealing with the harder aspects life presents. I saw your comment on Donna's blog this morning and came to check out yours. Your French OB doctor sounds wonderfully supportive, hoping all has worked out beautifully since. From another native Iowan, wishing you all the best.