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Maternity Leave Update

I am on the other side of parenting now. My son was born on July 26. I chronicled my birthing experience here, if you are interested.

Thank you all for your encouraging words on my previous post. You were all right! Parenthood is worth it! Every pain, worry, and frustrating minute of it is worth the joy of being this little guy's mommy. I wouldn't trade it for anything!

I'll see you back in the working world soon! (But not too soon!) 


Maternity Leave: I'll Be Back

I start my maternity leave on Monday, July 26. This means that I will be taking a 10-12 week hiatus from Loaded, The 404, and my work with The CBS Early Show. For those of you who watch those broadcasts, first of all, thank you! Second of all, they are well covered so please continue to watch! 

I am grateful for a small break in the daily grind. I love my job but life is more than work...or so I am told. A friend of mine said this when I told him that I was pregnant: "I just don't know what life is about if it isn't about family." It is time for me to find that out for myself and give my new baby my undivided attention for the next few months. 

I am nervous that the news business will leave me behind. Or forget about me. I know that sounds silly but I have vested myself heavily in my career. For so long it was all that I had, living all the way out here in New York City, so far away from my family in San Francisco. It is only natural to have some separation anxiety. 

I can admit that I am sometimes caught up in the publish-fast-publish-first world of technology news. If I read something and see that 5 people in my feed have already Tweeted that news, I feel woefully behind. How am I going to feel when I am a day or two behind a story because I am on an infant's sleep schedule!? I really don't know. But in my experience, when you let go of something you are obsessed about, you normally find its true value in a way that you had not anticipated. 

So I'm letting go of Natali, the workhorse. Not forever. Just for a few weeks. I hereby dub myself Natali, the mommy. And that is forever so I want to start it off properly. I have been blogging about the experience on my Mommy blog, aptly named Mommy Beta, which I hope you will read, subscribe to, comment on, and enjoy.

Wish me luck! I'll see you Twitter or Facebook or somewhere in between. I'll be back shortly and I promise to be able to talk about more than just baby monitors and spittle! 


My Festivus Grievances: 2009

Last year I made a list of all of the technologies that worked my nerves for Festivus. Well ladies and gentlemen, Festivus is among us once again and I am just cranky enough to take another crack at a 2009 list. So sit back and don your Oscar the Grouch demeanor because I'm about to complain. I am in just such a mood since an old lady snapped "Move it!" in Fairway Market today because I took too long to find the saffron. Holiday shopping makes me hostile. Bah humbug. Happy Festivus.

Natali's Tech Letdowns for 2009

  • MobileMe. The service is mostly fine except for the fact that it doesn't sync shared calendars from iCal. So if I want to sync my Google Calendar to my iPhone, I am SOL. Yes I know there are other solutions to work around that so please don't email me about them. I shouldn't have to find a workaround. I pay $100 per year for MobileMe. I want fully-functional synced calendars on my iPhone gosh darnit!

  • Google Wave. Seriously, WTF? I can't figure out the purpose of this program other than for people to bug me in a new way. Pass.

  • Mobile chargers. The European Union now has a law that mandates standard mobile chargers. Why can't we have that? I'm sick to death of carrying different chargers. We have czars that are in charge of our electronic lives now. Can't one of them fix this?

  • AT&T Wireless. Their crappy coverage is the bane of my existence. It makes me want to shout profanities into the universe for minutes on end. It makes me behave unladylike. I #$%&ing hate you, AT&T!

  • Earbuds. Why can't they be retractable and indestructible. Is that too much to ask for?

  • iTunes. Actually, I don't have a problem with it as much as my mother does and I cannot offer her advice or support from across the country over the phone. When I get a call from her asking about iTunes, I blame the dropped connection on AT&T.

  • Windows Mobile. I want to like these devices, I really do. But why does it take me 53 clicks/pushes/steps to accomplish what the iPhone can do in one swipe? Way more complicated than is has to be.

  • Facebook. Over it. Sick of it. Can't add any new friends anyway so I'm on information overload. Need to take a break from caring. Facebook and I may get back together in the new year.

  • The Barnes and Noble Nook. What a letdown. Such great promise, such bad execution.

  • Apple rumors. This is the thing that I hate the most about my job: pretending that I care about Apple speculation and having to postulate an opinion. "What do I think about a tablet? Oh I think...(insert BS here)." I hate that. I have better things to do with my mental CPU.

That's all I've got now that I've sufficiently worked myself up into a frenzy. Tomorrow, I'll throw off the grumps and get back to the holiday spirit but this has been a fun and much-needed vacation from that. Air your grievances in the comments if you have them!


Blooper Reel Time

Annual outtakes on CNET TV. At the risk of sounding too girly, I've had a bad hair year.


Giving Back Just By Shopping

Please watch this special episode of Loaded. It is about how to give back while you are shopping this holiday season and beyond. This piece breaks my heart a little but at least we know how to do something to help.

Thank you for watching, sharing, and doing anything you can to help other people.