Sunday, December 23, 2007

Merry Christmas to ALL....

This year I thought I was so on top of my game. We shopped early for all our neices and began piling presents in the babies room ready for the wrapping party to begin. A few weeks ago I smartly started wrapping and piling things under the tree. But now here I sit on the 23rd - with tons of stuff to wrap and no motivation at ALL to do so. We're still waiting for some items to arrive from online orders and I have a sneaking suspician that they won't show up before Christmas. Hubs is in bed sleeping and trying to catch up from the hellish week he had at work...and I'm still in my pajamas trying to motivate myself to get out of the house and grab those "last minute" items that I still need.
This year we are staying home and heading to my parents house Christmas morning. In my family, we decided to keep the cost and amount of STUFF down and just do stocking stuffers for the adults...and keep the actual presents for the kids. That will be nice because sometimes the present opening in my family can take ALL day...and I'm not sure this pregnant body of mine could handle it. Also - to keep things more simple, we've decided to go to the Madonna Inn for dinner. Which is awesome because we'll be able to do the present thing in the morning...go home and sleep or do whatever and then get all fancy for dinner...no cooking, no preparing, and NO DISHES. Normally I don't mind all that stuff - but this year it's about all I can muster to grunt through getting my shoes on every morning. So I appreciate the whole "keeping it simple" aspect of this year.
Next weekend, hub's parents are coming - which is awesome because they rarely come here to visit...and it's nice to not have to pile all the gifts in the car and find pet sitters. We're not sure about his sister and all of her clan. I suspect it will be a last minute decision on their part whether or not to come....if not then we will still potentially be traveling - but it'll be nice to avoid the holiday traffic and just go sometime in January.
Speaking of January - hubs and I have an anniversary coming up, and we really want to get away for the weekend. We figure it'll be kind of like a "babymoon" of sorts...but we haven't decided where to go yet. Any suggestions? It's only for a weekend so we can't rush off to Maui or anything much as I'd love that....hehehe. Gotta save that vacation time of his for when the baby comes!

Merry Christmas to everyone - or whatever holiday you do or don't celebrate. Whatever you do - someone PLEASE drink a few glasses of champagne for me mmmkay??

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Belly pic

*disclaimer*
with me being as picky as I am these days about pictures - you all who've requested belly pics are damn lucky that I'm putting this huge lumbering body of mine in front of a camera at all. I know, I know - later on in life I'll be GLAD I took pregnant pictures...but today, I'm having one of those days where I don't feel at all cute and pregnant, but more like a hippo stuck in the mud.
That being said - here I am at 24 weeks:
One of these days I need to figure out how to make a seperate page for these pictures so I can gradually see myself grow bigger, all at once...ha!
I'm feeling tons of kicks lately - and hubs has yet to feel any of them. I'm going with the theory that he has a "calming affect" on this baby...and so when our kid has a temper tantrum in the future, I'll be passing him/her right on over to hubs so he can take care of things with his soothing/calming nature. Course maybe I can then dangle cookies and candy in front of our kid and sabatoge him, hahaha...kidding! I would never do that...nooooooooooo
****
So remember how I said we were going through things and sorting and organizing and getting rid of crap? Well, I stumbled upon a bin of childhood stuff...and made a discovery that I have COMPLETELY forgotten about for oh...17 years or so?
Now this might sound crazy to some of you - but back when I was about 13, I remember being at what was called Thrifty's Drug Store. Now it's a Rite Aide - which we seem to have every 3 blocks (hate). I remember I came across what I thought were the coolest baby bottles ever - and since they were limited edition, I decided to buy them and store them away for that wonderous time in my life when I had a baby of my very own.
I must have stuck them into a box along with other childhood belongings and just ended up moving them from house to house where they would get shoved under a bed until I finally rediscovered them almost 20 years later.
I was SO stoked when I found them because I still think they're super cool...and I will definately be using them for my critter...check em out - old school soda bottles!

This pic came out crappy - but it's a welch's grape juice bottle...
The SPOT! You never see the Spot anymore...
So anyway - while it's kind of embarrassing to admit that I bought BABY BOTTLES when I was 13 years old...and now I'm 30 years old and kind of freaking out about this whole baby thing....I'm quite stoked that I had such forethought as a kid. I can almost guarantee if you'd asked me back when I was 13, how old I thought I'd be when I had my first child - I sure as hell wouldn't have said 30. 30 probably seemed OLD to me at 13. How wrong I was eh? Course I was wrong about pretty much EVERYTHING at 13...just don't tell my mother that I actually admit to that :)

And the winner is...

ME

Thank you everyone...with emails and comments included - I won, six to zero. Course, I pointed this out to the hubs - and lo and behold, I get online this morning and there is a mysterious comment added:

Anonymous has left a new comment on your post "Opinions Needed":

I say the hubster wins. tecnically the cat in the background is looking at the grey cat. SO THE HUBSTER WINS!!!!!! ps. HE's one hot looking man. you're sOOOOOO lucky

Bwaaaahahaha! I think we can all agree he's still trying to sabotage me :)

*new belly pics will be posted later today*

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Opinions Needed

Allrighty...I need some opinions please.
Here's the story:
Last night, hubs and I were talking about Christmas pictures - and while we know it's impossible to get all the pets together, I toyed with the idea of doing a type of collage with us in one picture, Georgia in another, and the cats in another.


Hubs said there was NO WAY that I could get a picture of all 3 cats looking at the camera at once. Well, being my incredibly stubborn self...I got defiant and said YES I CAN! Aaaand that's when it all began.
I jumped up - grabbed the camera and proceeded to gather cat after cat and put them into the laundry room so they were confined to a small space. There is a door between our kitchen and our laundry room with a window on the top half....so I had all the "kids" gathered on top of the washer and dryer, and of course a bag of treats - and I proceeded to try and get their attention and make them look my way. In the midst of this process, hubs decided to try and FOIL my plan and stood in the window with a can opener and a can of cat food. Course they all looked HIS way instead of mine...especially when he busted out the catnip and tried to shove it under the door - and even went so far as to get out the milk and pour it into a bowl while they all watched and went crazy in the laundry room.


He laughed his evil laugh while I was shouting "KNOCK IT OFF! Quit sabatoging me!" and doing anything I could to get them to face ME..."Kitties! here kitties!"
We must have looked utterly ridiculous - but I wanted to WIN dammit.
So...after much trial and error - and picture after picture of two cats looking, but one not looking, or all three of them climbing on each other and trying to jump off the counter or walking away from each other (dogs are SO much easier) and just being a total crapshoot...I FINALLY got my shot! Observe:

Now - hubs says this doesn't count because they're not looking AT the camera. I say it counts because they're all facing the camera and looking in my general direction. Besides, they're CATS...I can't even get my neices to look right at the camera half the time - and granted, they're all squinty eyed - but I did the best I could with the felines.

SOOOOO - this is where you come in. Opinions please?? Who wins...ME? or HUBS?

Monday, December 17, 2007

Aches and Pains

The nesting is in full force people!
Yesterday, hubs and I got up and got dressed - he started laundry and decided to tackle the baby's room himself (what a great little "Coco the houseboy" he would be eh?) - and I headed outdoors to tackle all the yardwork that's been staring me in the face for the last few months.
My brother decided to take our mower and see if he could fix it...he also was nice enough to bring HIS mower over and mow my lawn for me - how awesome is he???
We have this brick area in the front of our house where I had several barrels of tomatoes and squash growing over the summer. That whole area had become completely overrun with weeds and just STUFF that somehow gets piled out there. Well, the veggies were pretty much done for the season, so I yanked those suckers out and weeded the heck out of that side of the house. I also pruned this massive bush of daisy's that had become huge and mostly dead. I then weed wacked along the side of the house and along the fence line.
With all the bending and pulling and sweeping and raking I did...I was HUUUUUURTING last night. Thank GOD for hubs because I sat on my balance ball and he massaged my back until his fingers gave up.
I have to say though, our yard looks so much better. I didn't get everything done - but it definately made a noticable difference. I actually really love to work out in the yard, but I just don't have the time needed to keep it up...especially now that it gets dark so early.
At around 1pm yesterday - my 2 year old neice Gracie was dropped off, along with Jasper the dog, who is always good for Georgia to play with. The first thing Gracie wanted was "piggies" - (which means pigtails), and then we headed back outside and she "helped" me in the yard and also kept the dogs busy with balls and toys. All in all, a great day - and since Gracie was so good, we headed for her favorite thing...Jamba Juice where I got to slam some fruit and satisfy my craving all at the same time.
Georgia was so exhausted after running around the yard all day, she came in the house at about 5pm and passed out. She got up to eat dinner, but then turned around and went right back to bed until 7:30am this morning. Gotta love a worn out puppy!
This morning I felt like an 80 year old woman between the stiff back and the sore legs, and what's with all this PELVIS PAIN?? My doctor says it's normal, and I know I shouldn't complain because it's only downhill from here....but DAMN this kid gives me some aches and pains I never knew I would have. I keep forgetting that I can't just go out and weed the yard without paying for it later...

Hubs and I have gone through almost ALL our clothes and blankets and sheets and we have tons of stuff to take to Goodwill. I'm in this mode where I just want to get rid of stuff. I feel a sudden need to be as organized and clutter free as possible before this baby comes. We've been going through drawers and boxes and closets trying to PURGE (ha) ourselves of too much crap. Since we don't have a garage where we live now, this is ultra important because our storage shed is very small - and it's reserved for things like tools and camping equipment, so everything else is either in bins in closets, or in bins under the beds. One would think that a 3 bedroom house would be plenty big enough for 2 adults and a baby, and yet we kinda feel like we're bursting at the seems a little bit. The clothing situation has been interesting for me because I now have multiple sets of clothes:
Pre-pregnancy clothes
Pre-pregnancy clothes that I don't fit into, but swear I will someday
Maternity clothes
Maternity clothes that I've already grown out of, but need to store somewhere
Maternity clothes that don't fit yet - but will in the coming months

Thank goodness I've been given hand me down maternity clothes and only had to buy a few things because that can get seriously expensive. Especially since I'm not one of those itty bitty types who can just wear big stretch pants and a giant t-shirt. I need that extra material to cover this belly!

This morning at work, my boss noticed how huge I'm getting and so we had a good long chat about what will be happening when this baby comes.
Something in my mind says that I'm just not cut out to be a stay at home mom. Alot of people tell me I'll change my mind once I hold this baby in my arms - and who knows, I've never done this before, they might be right. But knowing myself...I just never saw myself as the type to let my husband be the sole provider while I stay home and take care of things. I've always thought I'd be a better mom if I at least worked part time, so I had something else to focus on...something that's just mine...not to mention contributing to our finances.
So when we found out we were pregnant - I really wasn't sure what was going to happen with my job. I knew I didn't want to work full time and put my baby in daycare all day every day - mainly because the cost would most likely cancel out my paycheck. I had hoped that I could work part time and do part time daycare. Granted, it would mean we'd have to pinch our pennies and be more careful - but at least I'd be working AND staying home for the most part.
I kind of dreaded having "the discussion" with my boss about this whole subject - but one day he sat down and asked me straight up what would be ideal for me. I told him that IDEALLY - I'd love to be able to work from home and come into the office a couple days a week...and still make my full time wages. I kind of laughed because I honestly didn't think that would be possible - I just KNEW we'd have to hire someone to cover for me and I'd have to train and go through that whole process.
But I was wrong.
I honestly am not sure how I could have lucked out anymore than I have as far as a job situation goes.
Basically - my ideal situation - is going to be my reality after this kid shows up.
I'll be taking some maternity leave, but then I'll be working from home...and going into the office twice a week - and BRINGING THE BABY WITH ME.
How insane is that? They're even going to make room for a playpen and whatever else I need so I can be working in the office and doing my stuff and have the baby right there with me the whole time.
I realize this is not going to work forever, and at some point I'll most likely have to pay for daycare or a sitter on those days...but in the meantime, I don't have to worry about it.
I don't think I can fully express how grateful I am that my boss is doing everything he can to make this a managable situation for me. He thinks it's important that I have my "mommy and baby time" as well as being able to continue with my job...which is what I really want to do so our finances will stay relatively the same.
I know it's going to be hard to work full time and be a full time mom...but I'm so blessed to have the opportunity to do both and have full support of not only my boss, but all my coworkers as well. My boss is very in tune with the fact that babies are unpredictable and he keeps telling me that I can't expect for my days to all go smoothly - so he's making arrangements so I can work around my unpredictable days and not be stuck in my normal 8 to 5 schedule.
Seriously - do I have the best boss ever???? I'm flabbergasted by the whole thing - and yet I'm filled with an overwhelming sense of calm as far as the whole thing goes. I just know that it's all going to work out, and I'm determined not to slack off and take advantage of this opportunity.

Thursday, December 13, 2007

My Darling Clementine

As you know, my craving all throughout this pregnancy so far has been fruit. I seem to go through phases, and while my last phase was apples - I am now obsessed with all things Tangerine. Our local store sells these little tiny clementine tangerines and I am so not kidding when I say that I can eat an entire bag in one sitting if I'm not careful.

The other day I mentioned to a friend that I had eaten 8 tangerines, and she freaked out thinking that I was going to OD on vitamin C or something...so in the interest of not freaking anyone else out...let me just show you all how tiny these things actually are. This is in comparison to a lemon.and actually - since my craving these little bastards doesn't help AT ALL with my heartburn issues, here is a better example:
I also recently learned that not only real tangerines are necessary...but tangerine popsicles are just as craving worthy these days. I know..popsicles in December - who would have thought - but hey, I'm blaming all this weirdness on the BABY.

****

My sweet hubby - works as a courier for a certain popular delivery service (not sure if he'd want me to say WHICH company...but think arch rival of the brown clad folks) and the one part of his job that he really loves is his customers.
He has his favorites of course - and apparantly he must talk alot about impending fatherhood because we've gotten GIFTS from people...isn't that just crazy? Complete strangers have bought things for my baby - I don't even know how to express how cool that is. Gotta love small towns!

Some of his customers bought us our first sleeper outfit, appropriately neutral so I can put either a wee baby boy or a wee baby girl into this cozy little item:

I just realized what an awful picture I took of that thing...in actuality, the outfit is light green and soooo snuggly - this picture doesn't do it much justice I'm afraid.

(Note to self: Still need to write thank you note for this item)

Also - another one of his customers was nice enough to knit our baby's first blanket!
(Note to self: must also write thank you note for this item - get on it girl!)
I just can't get over how neat it is that hubby's customers have gone out of their way to do this for us...it's one of those warm fuzzy type things that if I really thought hard about - I'd probably cry. Course I cry at the drop of a hat these days, so that's nothing new.

Also - while cleaning the baby's room last weekend, I stumbled upon our very first purchase for this kid. We bought these only a couple weeks after getting the positive result...or 6 positives as it may be. I really wanted red ones, but black will have to do for now :)

so tiny! Lord help me when it comes to itty bitty shoes...I just can't help myself. And in my house, high top converse are a must (and quite comfortable for pregnant people who are supposed to wear relatively flat shoes...even if they do make me look like I'm 15 years old).





And now I must boast about my hubby because while downloading these pictures - I found some from Thanksgiving that I forgot to share. I like to cook, but baking just isn't my thing. LUCKILY the hubs likes to do the baking...so much so in fact that his parents were nice enough to buy us a red kitchen aide mixer for our last anniversary. So my mom put us in charge of a few things for the holiday meal, and one of them was PIE. She wanted typical pumpkin pie which he gladly made...but hubs decided to up his game and make a homemade apple cranberry pie as well. So on Thanksgiving day - he created his masterpiece...and I walked into the kitchen to find this...

VOILA - he did all that lattice work himself...and I must say, I'm so impressed!





Wednesday, December 05, 2007

Belly Brain

Yes, the crib is in the house...no it's not out of the box...and yes, I'm ignoring it altogether.
I'm not quite sure what my malfunction is - but when my mom found out about my reaction, she laughed and laughed. She keeps calling me and saying "have you recovered yet?" and then have to wait until she's done laughing herself silly. Obviously, she's getting a huge kick out of this whole thing. She recently told me she'd never even HELD a baby before she had my brother and that just blows my mind. I mean, I know how to take care of a baby - I worked at a daycare for 4 years! I have neices coming out of my ears who I have spent hours and hours babysitting! I'm no stranger to diaper leaks and teething and crying for no reason and why there items like "peepee teepee's" that actually exist. But still - this whole baby thing weirds me out. Here my mom had no experience whatsoever and I have a feeling she probably didn't freak out when the crib showed up. I can only think it must be that whole Life Changing part that makes me frown with worry. Either that or the whole "watermelon coming out of your nostril" example that has been brought up to me on more than one occasion.

The yard is still only half weedwacked, mainly because when I was finished silencing the voices, I looked down and realized that pretty much everything I'd just hacked away at was now stuck to the front of my pants and that just gave a whole new meaning to business casual. I am now at my brother's mercy...hopefully he can fix our sick lawn mower so I can finish the job the RIGHT WAY instead of using my overgrown yard as an emotional crutch.

I have been unnaturally forgetful and clumsy lately. People around me call this "Placenta Brain"...but I prefer to avoid the word Placenta if I can help it - so in my house, it's Belly Brain.
The following occurances are evidence of this tragic condition, so I feel I must warn my family and friends or anyone who will be in my general vicinity anytime soon:

1 - I am on a constant hunt for my car keys, my cell phone, my sunglasses, and my SHOES.

2 - I have forgotten to put gas into my car on so many occassions that I'm becoming a pro at coasting into gas stations on fumes.

3 - I drop or fumble something at least twice a day...it's like I all of a sudden have the inability to actually GRASP something.

4 - My boss will sometimes ask me a question and I'll stare at him dumbfounded trying to figure out what in the hell he's talking about, and then it'll hit me like a mack truck and I'll go "OH!" and he just laughs and shakes his head.

5 - Several times a day I'll answer the phone at work and forget the name of our company - so there will be moments of "dead air" until I figure it out.

6 - I've locked myself out of my office twice.

7 - I've also gone all the way down to my car to leave for lunch or to go home and either not had my keys - or not had my purse...more times than I care to admit.

8 - I FORGOT to feed my dog.

9 - I have had mornings where I will try on clothes and I swear OVERNIGHT they suddenly don't fit and I get so frustrated about my ever-growing girth that I will stand there in my skivvies and cry. Not that I know WHY exactly I'm crying, but there it is.

10 - Last night - I had a cat fully stretched across my belly sleeping, and after a few minutes I forgot he was there and I rolled over which made him promptly slide off me and land right on top of the dog's bed, who proceeded to bark and scare my poor cat half to death. Hubs slept through the whole thing.

11 - I have gone to the store twice with the intent of getting certain items...but walked out without them. Hubs finally had to go for me so we could actually have MILK in our fridge instead of Nutter Butters in our cupboard.

12 - Yesterday, my 2 year old neice had to remind me 3 times that she'd asked for juice.

13 - I have found myself mindlessly watching the Spanish channel more than once.

14 - I have forgotten to lock the doors, close windows, turn of lights. My husband considers this a "breach of security" and ends up following me around the house before bed, checking doors and making sure I've turned off the oven before we're either murdered or burned to a crisp in our bed. I've assured him on many occasions that I'd probably be up peeing or popping Tums anyway so I could interfere, no problem.

15 - about 594281 times a day, I have to remind myself that the thumping and jumping in my belly is an actual BABY and not an alien creature that's about to burst through my stomach.

I think that about sums up the Belly Brain so far - I have a feeling it's going to get much more interesting as time goes on.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Silencing the Voices

Today, I left work at lunchtime and headed home, I pulled into my driveway, I got out of the car and said hi to my sweet puppy over the fence, I headed towards the front door, and then I completely stopped in my tracks.
There....on my front porch....was a big giant box that said CRIB on it.
I stared
I fidgeted
Then I walked PAST the box, unlocked the door, and headed into the house where I proceeded to say a quick hi to my kitties, and head directly through the house and out the back door where I grabbed our weed whacker and showed that yard who's boss.

Seriously you guys - I WEED WHACKED ON MY LUNCH HOUR. Who does that?

I was silencing all those voices in my head who were cramming my thoughts with
"holy crap, there's a crib on the porch"
"that's where babies sleep"
"that's where YOUR baby will sleep"
"good LORD you're having a BABY"
"and it's getting bigger by the day"
"and it's going to COME OUT OF YOUR VA----"
which is usually where I would shake it off and proceed to whack the hell out of those weeds. I have to say, it was rather comforting in a way...and I'm sure my yard thanks me...and my dog who has been sleeping and lounging in the green jungle out there. Sometimes I can't even see her we've let the grass get so high! (our lawn mower is broken...note to self - must get fixed before I wear out the weed whacker).

Honestly though - I have to worry about this whole motherhood thing...since I can hardly seem to face the BIG BOX ON MY PORCH without going off the deep end and spending my entire lunch hour doing yard work. Pretty soon we'll get a high chair and some baby bottles and hubs will come home to me working on the car...or painting the house...or some other such oddball thing.
*******
In other news - we looked at another house last night. I'm not QUITE sure what to think about it just yet. It's definately a good price. It's also HUGE with tons of storage (helloooo walk-in closet the size of my current bedroom! and helloooo linen closet that I could probably move a family of 5 into!). BUT - it's part of a "community" which means there are HOA's involved which I HATE. And, it's not exactly in a town we were super interested in moving to. It was of course dark when we got there, so I definately think we need to go back during the day and check it out again. We lucked out and ran into the neighbor who was super cool and he gave us the scoop on the area and the other neighbors. He's lived there since 98 and it seems the HOA have only gone up about $40 total throughout the years...which is somewhat comforting. He also said they take very good care of the places - paint and landscaping and maintenance is all done regularly, so that's good to know. I'm still not sure that we'd be comfortable paying $130 a month extra for someone to do that stuff though, you know? Plus, we'd have to find out what exactly the rules are because those associations can have some real interesting and deal breaking rules!
Also - it's a foreclosure, and the family who lived there before had some...well....interesting decorating ideas. The entire bottom floor except for the bedrooms is covered in this hideous blackish brownish grayish UGLY tile - it's so horrible I can't even begin to describe it. The carpet in the bedrooms and on the stairs all needs to be ripped out - so basically covering all that tile and redoing all the rooms (3 bedrooms) would cost a pretty penny. Plus, the whole thing needs to be painted inside. One of the rooms is totally garish and has a big "G-Unit" painted on one wall (WTF?) not to mention the wall colors themselves just being really poorly done and waaaaay too bright and circusy for our taste. The master bedroom is painted this super dark forest green - but they didn't finish, so it's just....bad. All the baseboards and pretty much everything else in the house needs to be repainted - I think that might help alot actually.
The cabinets in the kitchen are painted a horrible chocolate brown and none of the knobs match up which we thought was weird. Also, it needs a new stove and the countertops need to be ripped out because there is a big burn/melty mark on one side, and it's just not our style either.
The biggest project would be the downstairs bathroom. There is a full bath downstairs - and full bath upstairs. BOTH rooms are tiled...and I mean like the WALLS ARE TILED. (wierd? I've never seen that before, but maybe it's a popular thing?) All the way up to the ceiling. And OY VEY I'm not sure what those people were thinking. The tiles are all crooked and they chose this horrible dark pink grout and it's EVERYWHERE...my gosh it's so bad we just started to laugh. If anything we got some serious amusement. But knowing that we'd have to rip all that out and probably put up new sheetrock and start from scratch is a pretty daunting task.
We figure there's probably a good $10-$15k worth of work that needs to be done to the place to get it the way we'd want it. Which is something to think about..along with the HOA's being added to our mortgage.
I don't know...I think I need to see it again...and we need to crunch some numbers. BUT - the price is super low, and it's definately livable - we've have to tackle the projects slowly while we lived there because I don't think we could afford to do it all at once and certainly not before we moved in. Also, like I said - it's huge. It's about 300 square feet bigger than our rental house now AND it has a 2 car garage (we don't have a garage at all where we are now). Plus, it's got a good sized fenced yard with plenty of room for the pooch and a garden for me. I don't care for the layout, or the fact that it's 2 stories...but hey, maybe a good way to burn some calories? haha!
eeeeeeeeek I just don't know. This whole house thing is a crazy thing to think about...especially in this market. It's hard to know if you should jump on a good deal or if you should hold out for something better to come along. I need a crystal ball right about now please!

Brilliant

WHY OH WHY did we not think about doing something like this at our own wedding???
I showed this to hubs last night and he goes "I want to be best friends with these people!" - HEE!

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Reality Stick

In 4-5 days, we will be getting a delivery to our house....a big reality check kind of delivery. Observe:
WHOA...hey there - is that a CRIB? and it's going to be in MY HOUSE? Whaaaaat?
Last night I cruised around online to see if I could find any bedding I liked...and I couldn't. I'm discovering that it's really hard to find neutral bedding that I like. Seems like everything neutral is either bugs or frogs or bees or plaid - all of which are too themelike for my taste. Can I just get something SIMPLE please? I was talking to my mom and saying how I might just have to go with solid color or something and she mentioned that my sister in law wants me to pick out some fabric so she can make me some bedding. That's so awesome because I'm sure I'll be able to find SOMETHING that's not all cutesy and gender specific.
The guest/baby's room is a MESS - I've decided my project for Friday will be cleaning and organizing that room...I have a bookshelf that my dad made when I was little - a desk that I had growing up which I will be using as a changing table - and a dresser that belonged to hubby...all of which need to be sanded and painted - so perhaps we'll get started on that this weekend before I get too big and unwieldy. I also have a ton of hand me down baby stuff to go through and organize, and the closet desperately needs to be cleaned out. I'm not sure how we let that room get so out of hand, especially since it's visible from the living room - but somehow it becomes our "catch all" room. Christmas presents for the kids that need to be wrapped and set aside are piled on the bed - blankets that need to be washed, folded and stored - maternity clothes that I still need to sort through and try on - I'll feel so much better when I can look in that room and be happy with what I see instead of sighing and walking back out, not wanting to deal with the mess.
Our Thanksgiving this year should be somewhat relaxing and unstressfull...we've got certain dishes we're bringing and nobody is overdoing it. I'm so looking forward to having four days off and getting some stuff done around the house! Our poor yard has been really neglected lately since it's getting dark so early. Must get out there and spruce things up.
Happy Thanksgiving everyone :)

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

20 weeks and halfway there!

I had my 2nd ultrasound yesterday...hubs couldn't get the time off - so my mom went with me which she was THRILLED about.

These first two pictures are 3-D where you can sort of make out the face and our critter has it's little fists all balled up in a boxing stance!



and this third one is a regular picture - a good profile shot...



Everything looks good - there's a wee bit of extra fluid in the kidneys, but they don't seem too worried about it. I'll be going back for another ultrasound in 2 months just to check on them.

It's so strange because I can look at these pictures and my brain knows that this is my kid - but I can't really comprehend emotionally that it's my kid. The pictures and the pregnancy all seem very disconnected to me. I wonder if I'll feel that way when I actually give birth...like I'll hold my baby, and it'll be completely seperate from the pregnancy part? I don't know - like I've said before, it's very difficult to wrap my head around this whole process.

Lately, it seems that I've just suddenly popped out...my belly I mean. Since my first belly pic was 4 weeks ago - I decided to take another on at 20 weeks - and WHOA was I surprised again to see myself from a different angle.


Dang Chang - that's a BELLY I got goin on!
Let's compare shall we?

16 weeks and 20 weeks



















okay that's just wierd.

And I'm only going to get bigger from here!

The sleeping thing has really been as issue for me lately - all the tossing and turning and peeing and heartburn problems have taken it's toll. My morning walks have landed by the wayside in the interest of getting in at least an hour and a half more sleep. I know it's only going to get worse, so I need to stop complaining and appreciate the amount I'm getting right now.

I've been feeling alot of movement lately - thumps and bumps and flutters. Everytime I grab hubs hand to see if he can feel it, it stops. We've determined that this kid is ALREADY a stinker...as we imagine him/her hunkered down in there snickering and trying to be really still while we feel around. I think it'll be a while before he can actually feel anything, in the meantime it's like my own little secret .

Looking forward to a short work week - WOOO! Happy Thanksgiving :)

Friday, November 16, 2007

Broken Record

I puked this morning. And that? SUCKED. I can only say that this morning is a big fat reminder of how lucky I am that I didn't have morning sickness all this time. If I did, I would have been the most whiny, complaining, horrible pregnant woman on the planet.
Oddly enough, for the last few months - brushing my teeth has started to make me gag. I chalked it up to being a wierd pregnancy thing...but today? I more than gagged. I'm hoping this was just a one-time thing brought on by a funky stomach and some acid reflux - because I hate throwing up more than anything.

Last night, I got a bowl of grapes from the fridge to munch on during Grey's Anatomy...and I LOOOOVE grapes. But when I bit into one - it tasted like sawdust to me. Hubs said they were the best grapes we've had all year and he couldn't believe I didn't like them. I tried another one...and spit it out. He was baffled, as I tried to explain that it just seems to be the way things go for me now. My tastes can change in an instant, and how I feel at any given time can change instantly. I told him I feel like my body is on loan to someone else...and they're going to give my body back to me eventually, but it'll be all stretched out and saggy and in the meantime - all these weirdo things will happen that I have no control over. Every morning I wake up feeling rounder and I've noticed my balance is completely off. I can stand in one place, and just feel wobbly - I assume it must be this growth that has attached itself to the front of me and thrown me off.

************
I was typing this entry...and something just completely through me off my thought process.

sadly - I work close to the AG cemetary, and I just got up to fax something and glanced out the window...there is a funeral with a tiny little casket happening right now. I just can't even imagine....the mere thought of it makes my heart hurt.

I don't know what else to say now that doesn't seem incredibly unimportant and trivial.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Learning process

Well...as far as the house goes - we've pretty much thrown up our hands and said "screw her" because the homeowner is being ridiculous. We countered back to her first counter with what we thought to be a fair amount. Exactly in the middle of what we both wanted. But she countered back again and said she changed her mind...she wants to keep the washer/dryer - she wants another $500 deposit from us - and if we do that, then she'll be so kind as to drop a whole $1000 off her price. So basically, she's taking about $500 worth of appliances away, and wants more money on top of that - but she'll be gracious enough to knock the equivalent of that off her price. SOOO LAME.
I think this lady might actually be insane...because in THIS market? nobody can try to wheel and deal like that and actually expect to sell their house.

We've got our eye on a couple other places - and I think we've pretty much decided that this first house was not meant to be. The good thing is that we now know exactly how this whole process works and it won't be such a daunting task next time.
We're disappointed because we do love that house - but we'll see...we might actually still have a chance if she doesn't sucker someone else into her crazy scheme.

*******
It has been craaazy hot here lately. I walked Georgia at lunchtime and I could only go about half the distance I usually do because I was way too hot and didn't want to overdo it...plus I've been having alot of lower abdomen pains from growing this kid. Between the pains and the not sleeping well and being so hot and not fitting into any of my clothes, it's no wonder why I'm so cranky!
My poor hubby has been so good about dealing with my moods and my lack of energy and he's been a big help around the house and cleaning the cat box and all. I'm SOOOO grateful for him and how excited he is about this baby.
It still seems so surreal to me, I'm wondering when exactly it's all going to seem real. I thought once I started showing or started being able to feel movement, it would be more of a reality check...but nope, I still think this is all VERY weird and I can't really wrap my head around it all.

We have a choice of going to either French or Sierra Vista hospitals to deliver...I've been a patient at SV several times, and didn't have good experiences - plus it always seems so crowded in the maternity ward there...so my first thought was that I'd much rather be at French. It's been suggested by others that we should tour both, just to make an informed decision. So I called SV to set up a tour and they couldn't get us in for a tour for over a month...I then called French, and they set us up for a tour 3 days later. So we toured the birthing center at French and we LOVED IT. We both felt so comfortable there that we decided to cancel our tour of SV and just stick with French. Unless this pregnancy becomes high risk, or I go into labor sooner than 36 weeks...we'll be good to go!
French just seems alot more relaxed and like they really let the birthing experience be what you want it to be. They said I can wear whatever I want, I shouldn't feel like I have to be in a hospital gown - they said they really encourage laboring mom's to be up and moving around - so they'll only want me connected to the monitors for 10-15 minutes every hour once I'm admitted. Otherwise I can be cruising the halls, sitting on a birth ball, or in a birthing tub if I prefer...they don't want me to feel like I'm stuck lying flat on a bed when gravity can be helping move things along. They have DVD and CD players in the rooms...and they said I can do whatever I need to feel more comfortable or relaxed - the only thing they can't allow is candles for obvious reasons :)
So we signed up for birthing classes at French - and I've filled out all my admitting forms and everything, I just need to turn them in. I feel much better having toured the facility and feeling comfortable with how they do things and being able to sit in one of the rooms. We even bumped into our OB while we were there and he was all smiles checking in on one of his patients.

I know that I can't have any expectations about what labor will be like or even WHEN it will happen - and I also can't guarantee that I'll actually be delivering at French since it really depends on how my pregnancy goes....but I like that French has a lower c-section rate, and that they really try hard not to make anyone share a room. I also like that they seem to be more in tuned with what MOM wants, rather then what's quicker or more convenient for them.

Soooo - that's done! My OB's nurse has been bugging me to tell her which hospital we've decided on and to sign up for classes before they get full - so it feels good to finally have an answer for her. I really didn't expect to have to do any of that so soon , but apparantly the classes fill up rather quickly - there was already a long list of people for our January class...weird.
I guess not everyone is as big of procrastinators as us - heck, we even put off having a baby for 6 years! hehehe

Saturday, November 10, 2007

Veeeery Interesting...

So we got an answer today - she obviously didn't like our offer...which we expected. What we did NOT expect was for her to counteroffer for $6k ABOVE HER ASKING PRICE.
Ummm helllo? Did she not see that sign out in front of her house with the asking price posted on it? Seriously, we're not sure what this lady is thinking...and it kinda ticked us off. We would rather her just reject our offer than to counter with such a ridiculous amount.
Also she of course magically mentioned that she has a showing tomorrow - which I assume is supposed to scare us into taking her offer? shhhhyeah...NOT GONNA WORK.
We have both gone into this with a very open mind - we love the house, but we're not willing to get in over our heads because of it. If it wasn't meant to be - then so be it...we'll keep our eyes and ears open for the next one that comes along. At least we're fully educated about this entire process, and we've done the hardest part which is decided on a lender and getting all approved for a loan.
We'll see what happens! I expect we'll know more in a few days at the latest.

In baby news - I am finally looking pregnant to other people....it's like I just popped out all of a sudden. I still can't get over how wierd this all is - it's like my body doesn't belong to me anymore! I have a doctor's appointment on Monday, and then my next ultrasound is the following Monday...so hopefully this kid will cooperate and I'll get to see it's face :)

Ms. Georgia got a bath today and she's so soft and silky that I can't stop petting her...I think tomorrow we'll be hitting the dog park after we meet with our realtors so she can go show off her little pretty smelling self.
If anyone has a dog they need bathed or groomed - may I highly recommend Dune Doggies in Grover Beach. Georgia is a HORRIBLE client and really freaks out when she's given a bath...in fact she usually has bowel problems, she gets so freaked out. Well this time she didn't have ANY problems, and despite a bit of whining and whimpering she really behaved herself. The owner's husband did the washing, while she stayed up by G's face and hugged and loved on her. They were even able to clip her nails without a fight! Yes, I believe we found a new groomer for our pup :) Spread the word so this lady will stay in business!
Have a great weekend everyone...

Friday, November 09, 2007

More sleep please!

Allrighty...we finally completed the daunting and tedious task of making our first offer on a house. We signed and initialed so many papers last night, I think I have carpal tunnel now...and we very well may have just given up our first born and thrown a donkey or two into the mix. We asked a lot more questions, and stumbled upon some pretty WEIRD laws they have out there now about disclosing information about a house...most likely because some jackass decided to sue somebody once upon a time over the lamest thing.
We went really, really low on our offer, so I will drop into a dead faint if she actually accepts it...but we figured we'll never know if we don't ask right? All she can do is counter with another offer and we'll go from there. We'll find out for sure by 5pm this Saturday!
With all this potential house buying and potential moving and "OH-MY-GOSH what are we going to do with all our stuff" thoughts piled into our heads...both hubs and I are flipping and flopping around in bed like fish out of water pretty much all night long. I do it anyway purely out of being uncomfortable and having to pee 48963 times a night - but tack on a load of brain activity and it's gonna be a sleepless night.
When I first got to the point where I couldn't sleep on my stomach, I had a heck of a time finding a comfort zone...I used at least 3 pillows trying to wedge myself into a good position. But regular pillows are so big and awkward that it just wasn't working out. At this point, I was commiserating with a fellow pregnantier and she recommended a snoogle.

People...I'd like you to meet my new boyfriend:



Once I met Snoogle...I started sleeping LIKE A BABY. I still get up to pee - but it gives me a perfect opportunity to take some Tums, guzzle some water, and flip this sucker around to my back instead of my front. This goes on all night long - but I sleep so soundly with this pillow, I fell in love with it after the first night. Hubs even wants one - he tries to steal it! And the cats all love it too, in fact I woke up last night around 2:30am and Tweak was huddled on the snoogle and leaning up against my stomach purring like a rusty motor.
All that being said...and despite my snoogling - my last couple of nights have been awful! The first night of bad sleeping I woke up at midnight and I was CHOKING...my instinct made me fling myself out of bed and I coughed and hacked like I've been smoking for 100 years. Hubs woke up and freaked out and jumped up to get me some water...and after a while I finally calmed down. Seems like heartburn and acid reflux was doing a number on me. I propped myself up with pillows and after it happened several more times, I had a fitful night of sleep trying to stay upright enough so it wouldn't make me cough. Same thing happened last night and it's making me crazy. Luckily I have a doctor's appt on Monday so I'm definately going to ask what's up with THAT...mama needs her sleep!!
I've totally flaked on walking in the morning because of all this not sleeping business. I only made it ONE day this week, which sucks.
I wonder if I'm eating too much food, too late at night or something? Hmmm, it definately couldn't be all the leftover Halloween candy that I've been cramming into my piehole...and most likely not the 4 bowls of cinnamon toast crunch I had throughout the day yesterday, noooooooo.
I think apples are taking a backburner these days to cereal - I love me some cereal!
Happy Friday everyone...


Thursday, November 08, 2007

Big Decisions and a LOOONG post

Over the last several weeks - our minds have been an absolute whirl of activity. In between all the baby stuff we've had to think about, we've also been immersed in the exhausting world of finances.
You see, back at the beginning of summer...we spoke with a mortgage lender just to see where we stood on purchasing a house. Since we got married, we'd been telling ourselves there was just no way we could do it...it's too expensive here. We took a few trips out of state to less expensive areas and despite our best efforts - even going so far as to meeting with realtors, we just never found a place we felt was right. We found many possibilities...but we always told ourselves we'd much rather put our roots down here. Little by little, the housing market began to taper off, and slowly the prices were moving down. So last July, after talking to this mortgage lender...we walked out of her office feeling alot less discouraged and like we actually COULD possibly buy a house someday in the future. We decided to start living as if we were making the lowest house payment quoted - just to see if we could do it. The nice part was realizing that we could make that payment without seeing much of a dent in our current finances...little changes here and there in our spending habits made it possible without being overwhelming and feeling like we have to mac and cheese every night.
The affordability of an actual house wasn't even a thought...because we knew we'd most likely have to buy a condo or a townhouse first. The problem was finding one with a big enough yard for Georgia...and one with low enough HOA's to make it worth our while because those fees can really put a damper on a mortgage payment. It was CHALLENGING to say the least - we looked at condo after condo and tried to decide what we could live with and what we were willing to sacrifice to be homeowners and get our foot in the door. It was slightly disheartening to look at certain places that we were really run down and needed alot of work - or just had a balcony or a tiny little concrete pad for a yard. I always imagined my puppy looking at me through the glass with sad eyes because she didn't have a place to play...or I'd imagine our future kid not having any outdoor space to play and burn off energy. I think the outdoor space was one of the things we struggled with the most during this house hunting process. We also looked at a few mobile and modular homes thinking that might be a better option....but the interest rates are so much higher on those because they depreciate in value - so we really didn't feel like that would be a good investment. The few prospects we actually liked and were willing to live with would usually end up being discarded because the HOA fee's were so high...and of course there's no cap on those, so we could move in and they could raise it $100 a month and there wouldn't be a thing we could do about it. We kept an open mind and from time to time we'd scan the MLS and the real estate papers more so because it was fun and exciting to imagine the time when we could actually buy something of our very own.
Then I found out I was pregnant - and we figured this whole house buying thing was gonna have to go on the back burner for a while until we knew what would happen with my job and our expenses, etc, etc.
Back during our initial search, we stumbled upon a tiny little house about 5 blocks from where we are now...it looked so cute from the outside, but it was waaaaay over our price range, the pictures online didn't thrill us, and the location wasn't ideal...so we shrugged it off. Well, over the last few months...we noticed that little house was still on the market and the price kept going lower and lower. Finally, in September, it dropped into our price range - and we toyed with the idea of it, but didn't pursue it thinking about the size and location. About a month ago, we noticed it STILL hadn't sold...and so we decided to call a realtor and at least see if we could go look at the inside - figuring it wouldn't hurt.
Turns out - we walked in and fell in love with the place. It was built in the 50's, has been immaculately well kept and has all new dual paned windows and new doors and new paint and it's just a cute as can be. The owner still lives there, so it's always interesting trying to imagine your own furniture and things in a space....but we both realize that it feels alot bigger than it looks from the outside and while a 2 bedroom - 1 bath house overall is alot smaller than what we currently live in - we knew that we'd have to downsize if we were going to invest our money in something. The bedrooms seem bigger than the ones we have now - and it's got a YARD - all fenced off and everything! The yard itself is not huge - but it's plenty big enough for our pup and including the side yards, we feel comfortable that it will fit our needs. I could even have a garden back there!
We went home filled with such excitement about this house....but in the interest of not wanting to be blinded by the cuteness of the place - we decided it would be a good idea to have my parents come by and see it for themselves. We knew if anyone would tell it to us straight - it would be them...especially my dad, who can be brutally honest when it comes to financial decisions and structures and resale potential.
So the following day, I met my parents with the realtor and they took a walk through the house. I was very quiet - just waiting to hear their opinions as they VERY thoroughly looked through every room - dad went outside and inspected everything he could, and mom was inside opening closets and cupboards and drawers.
We stood in the backyard and looked at the house....and I tentatively said "well??? what do you guys think?"
and they said "it's fabulous...it's a good deal....it's definately going to appreciate in value...if you can buy this house - DO IT"
I couldn't believe it - I honestly expected a barage of negative comments, but they LOVED the place!
In fact, after I got back to work - they called me and said "so did you put in an offer yet?"
HA!
So - we decided to start seriously "shopping for mortgages". Now, 3 weeks ago - neither one of us knew squat about mortgages, so I got some books from the library...and now, after so many meetings with different lenders and asking a TON of questions and providing TONS of financial paperwork and asset information to the lenders, we now know more than we ever thought we'd know about mortgage loans. The first thing we learned is that dealing with mortgage people is alot like dealing with car salesmen...you can't let them talk you into ANYTHING. They want to get the most money possible - but we want to borrow the least money possible.
Plus, this whole experience has really taught us to go over our finances with a fine toothed comb and how important being in just the right situation is. Without even realizing it - we've built up a good credit score, obtained a 401k, 3 cars paid in full, and lowered our debt enough to not be an issue with any lenders. We keep hearing that loans are getting harder and harder to qualify for because of all the foreclosures in the area...so we've been simply amazed to be approved with every lender we've spoken with.
In between all these meetings and emails and phone calls - we've also looked at other houses, just to keep our options open for more potential drops in price...and of course gone back and forth about making an offer on the first house.
We kept thinking:
"we're just about to have a baby...is this the right time?"
"what if the market bombs even more and we could get a better deal somewhere else?"
"what if the closing costs and fees are more than we can handle?"
"are we getting in over our heads?"
"is it smart to jump into all this right before the holidays?"
"Should we wait until we have a bigger buffer/emergency fund built up before we take a plunge like this?"
"what we wouldn't give for a crystal ball right now!"

a million different scenerios entered our heads and we scoped out every possibility both good and bad. It's really important for us to do this on our own without any financial help from family - and while at one point, we didn't think it would be possible otherwise...we've since learned differently and I'm SO GLAD we proceeded to ask questions and talk to a broker to find out exactly where we stand. It would have sucked to borrow money from family and have that hanging over our heads, when it wasn't actually necessary in the first place, you know?

A few days ago, our realtor called - and despite the fact that the seller's agent knows we're interested in the house...the seller again lowered the price - a full $10k lower than her previous asking price. I couldn't BELIEVE it. So every loan we'd been approved for was based on the first price and anything lower will just be icing on the cake!
Hubs and I talked and talked - and decided that this kind of deal doesn't come along very often and we should just start the process and see what happens. We met again with the lender we felt the most comfortable with who drew up a loan plan that works in our favor and that we feel comfortable enough with to make an offer.
SO - after so many questions and paperwork and money stuff going through our heads...tonight, we will be meeting with our realtor...signing a deposit check....and making our FIRST offer on our FIRST house.
I can't wait to see what happens!
We're really lowballing an offer to start with - so we're not expecting her to accept it...but we're curious to see what she counters with.

This is all so nervewracking and potentially life changing. I'm not sure what's harder...deciding on whether or not to buy our first house - or having our first child!

Friday, November 02, 2007

Proud Moments

When I was little, I remember Halloween as one of my favorite days of the year. I got to wear a costume and get FREEEEEE candy! The costume was fun , but let me tell you - it was ALLLL about the candy. My brother and I used to dump all our candy out on the living room floor and seperate out all the stuff we didn't like...which wasn't much - but I specifically remember getting rid of those little wrapped peices of bubble gum that were hard as cement...and those butterscotch discs in the orange cellophane wrapper. My dad would usually sneakily steal my smarties and my pixie stix and then came the TRADING. AJ and I would start negotiating and making deals like crazy. In the end - we would usually end up with quite a haul and after eating a TON that night - we'd stockpile it away in our rooms. I was usually very big on "organizing" my candy...seperate it by chocolates, gummi's, etc - little jars and baskets with all the different kinds stashed on a shelf. This candy was SERIOUS business to me when I was little....come to think of it, who am I kidding - it's STILL serious business to me! I love my candy - I'm just more particular these days. Before, I would eat any gummi bear - but nowadays I've become a gummi bear snob...only haribo gummi bears will do! I used to eat any kind of liquorice...but nowadays - forget twizzlers, it's all about the red vines. I digress...
My point here is that when I was little - Halloween was ALLLLLLLLL about the candy, that final prize.
So on Wednesday, AJ and CC stopped by with my sweet neices in tow. They were marching around our house in their costumes with lollipop's in hand and candy shoved into their gaping mouths as fast as they could swallow...and I had to laugh at what a fun day they must have had.
My sister in law then proceeded to tell me something about their evening that made my eyes tear up with pride over my neices. Apparantly they had stopped at a friend's house to visit with them and their children. The older girls (6 and 7 years old) decided to help pass out candy to all the kids coming by the house. The neighborhood got so bombarded with kids that they eventually ran out of candy. My neices both grabbed their bags of candy and dumped them out into the bowl and started passing their OWN candy out to the other kids. I can't even explain to you how it felt to hear they had done that...to be so generous and unselfish and such a young age...I was SOOO PROUD! Hubs and I made sure to tell them how proud we were and what a good thing they had done and gave them big hugs. They stopped by their church afterwards, so the girls had an opportunity to get more candy for themselves...but the mere fact that they were willing to give up their candy and pass it out to the other kids gave me a big lump in my throat.
Thinking back, I honestly don't know if I would have done that as a child. My entire focus was on candy, candy, candy....and given the opportunity - I just don't know if I would have done what they did. In fact, I'm not sure how many kids these days would have done that...seems like few and far between in this generation of entitlement.
I can't help but think that my brother and sister in law may certainly have their hands full with their brood - and while they are outnumbered...and things can definately get out of hand behavior wise...they must be doing SOMETHING right, for their kids to have behaved like that without any prompting from their parents.
I must say, as the responsibility of being a MOM (oy - scary!) looms closer...I've been paying alot more attention and gleaming as much information as I can from those around me, who've walked the parenting road and succeeded. I hope someday my kids will be willing to give up their candy for other kids...
Because they can always hit up my stash that I have stockpiled in the bedroom :)

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Good News

Time for an update....and it's alllllll good. After a rather harrowing week of trying not to overthink everything and just trusting God to help us be at peace with whatever the outcome - we finally had our appointment this morning - and everything is great!
The baby is fine - and hubs and I feel about 500 thousand pounds lighter.
Turns out, my due date was miscalculated - and instead of being 19 weeks, I'm actually only 17 weeks. They resubmitted our test with the new date, and it was negative...everything is hunky dory.
We did have an ultrasound and it was so neat to finally see our critter on screen! Our stubborn genes are already in effect because the kid wasn't in the right position to see it's face...and despite much poking and prodding, refused to budge except for stretching some arms and legs. In fact, the coolest part of all was when we saw an arm shoot out, splay out it's fingers in jazz hands position...and then give us a thumbs up!
Observe:

Hubs and I looked at each other with wide eyes and of course that's when I started to cry. We just knew right then that our kid was telling us everything is okay. As if to say "Hey you two..quit worryin I'm A-OK in here!"

*big sigh* I tell you what - that is exactly the sign we both needed at that moment. I walked out of that doctor's office and just fell apart...it was like every emotion and worry I'd been stuffing into my "I'm fine" responses just poured out of me at that moment. I feel such immense relief, and like I can go back to enjoying this pregnancy instead of having a cloud of worry hanging over my head. OUR heads. So it's over - and it was nothing to worry about after all. Next time, I will know better and I won't be taking that stupid test. Knowing that I love my baby no matter what - I've realized that ignorance is bliss as far as this test is concerned. I'll rely on the ultrasounds thankyouverymuch.

My new due date is April 6th - and I'll be having another ultrasound on Nov. 19th to see if "the bun" cooperates and shows us some face shots!

By the way - I promptly showed up wearing my "not finding out" t-shirt and the tech walked in and looked at me and said "well...that WAS going to be my first question" ha-HA! We told him didn't we Amanda???


Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Fun Stuff

So I can't remember if I've mentioned it before, but hubs and I have decided not to find out what we're having. Even if I end up getting an amnio which means we would know for SURE which gender it is...we still decided (okay I should say I decided...because honestly I think hubs would find out in a hot second given the chance - too bad he's not the one with the uterus!) to wait and keep it a surprise.
It's interesting the responses we've gotten regarding this subject...some people think it's lame and we should just find out because it makes shopping easier and what's the point of having a baby in this day and age if you can't plan ahead - and other people think it's cool because it's so rare that people keep it a surprise anymore.


At any rate - how awesome is my friend Amanda for sending me this maternity t-shirt????I laughed so hard - it's PERFECT - and I'm totally wearing this to the ultrasound on Tuesday!She also sent this adorable onesie:


And just for kicks...hubs and I visited a Hot Topics store a couple weeks ago and HAD to buy this one:

haha - I wanted one that said "I listen to Led Zeppelin with my mommy" - but no dice - Daddy will have to do, even though he didn't even know who Led Zeppelin WAS until we met. Had to teach that boy everything I know about good rock and roll.

Anyway - THANK YOU AMANDA...you rock girl - I will be sporting this shirt proudly every chance I get!


Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Belly Pic!

Okay - it's a bit odd for me to see it myself...I get a completely different view most of the time - hee...but anyway - here be the belly at 18 weeks.


How fast things can change

Yesterday morning I was all excited because I felt the baby move...and I was pumped to go home and get our room all cleaned and spruced up. But by noon, we got a phone call that changed everything.
My doctor called me himself Yesterday afternoon and told me that my AFP test came back with an abnormal result. The AFP test is for Down Syndrome, Spina Bifida, and Trisomy 18. I have a friend who's child had Spina Bifida and she was able to have surgery in utero to help her baby and now everything is fine - so after much thought, and knowing it was a simple blood test - we decided to go ahead.
Today - after all the research I've done...and finding out just how high of a false positive rate this test has - (even my doctor said he gets 2-3 abnormal results a week) I wish I would have known earlier so I would have opted not to get this test.
At any rate - we tested positive for Downs Syndrome...with a 1 out of 100 probability rate.
Of course it's hard not to think the worst - but with the false positive rate being so high and reading story after story of others who worried unneccesarily - we have a good gut feeling that everything is fine.
My ultrasound on Friday was canceled and my OB scheduled us with a high risk pregnancy specialist who will be able to perform a level 2 ultrasound (this means it takes about an hour and they do alot of measurements of bones and such) and from there...if they feel we should - they will recommend doing an amnio as well as meeting with a genetic counselor. I REAAAALLY don't want an amnio - so please pray that it doesn't go that far. In fact, because it's Downs...I'm not sure I would do it anyway because it could put the baby in danger. We'll have to wait and see - baby steps, right?
My main frustration at this point is that the specialist can't get me in until next Tuesday - which means an entire week of waiting. I'm currently on a back up list in case there are any cancellations - which is good and bad. Good because we will find out sooner - Bad because hubs won't be with me to see our baby on screen.

We're trying really hard to be positive and keep our chin up - but there is a definate cloud of worry over both of us. We just have to keep reminding ourselves that it's probably nothing - but having peace of mind would be GREAT right about now.

Monday, October 22, 2007

Movement

Since I've neglected this blog for over a month now...and TODAY I felt the baby move for the first time - I figured it would be a good time to update.


Last Monday I had a doctor's appointment - and my doc said it would happen any day. He said I should definately be feeling movement by my next appointment - and lo and behold, this morning I felt a light tapping...like popcorn popping. So flippin wierd, I can't even explain it.


We're getting our first and possibly only Ultrasound on Friday. It's going to be a 4-dimensional ultrasound...I'm not quite sure what to expect - but apparantly what we'll see will look more like a baby and less like a blob on a black background.


I'm feeling pretty good - although I have my ups and downs in the energy department. I'm also fighting a cold and of course I can't take anything for it, so that sucks. Yesterday, I had a burst of nesting instinct and cleaned the living room and kitchen spotlessly. Our wood floors are polished and shined, everything is dusted and picked up and vacuumed and CLEAN...*sigh* it's so nice to wake up in a house that's actually clean, and actually SMELLS clean. Febreeze is the bomb.


Tonight we'll be working on our bedroom which still looks like a hurricane went through it. Our bedroom is really narrow and to make room for our dresser - we shoved the bed as close to one wall as we could...like so:

If I turn sideways - I could usually fit through that space just fine.....but now that I have this growth on the front of me...and I have to wedge myself in and out of that space many times a night, what with all the peeing I do nowadays - it's getting tougher and tougher to manage and fit my girth between the wall and the bed...so hubs and I are switching sides. This will take some getting used to I'm sure - because we've had our same sides of the bed almost 6 years now...but as for me getting up 3-4 times in the middle of the night, it will be a LIFESAVER. Plus, I figure once we get the cradle in place - we'd have to switch sides anyway... so tonight I plan on washing alllll the bedding and vacuuming every nook and cranny of that room - cat beds and all. I need my little haven back, and we've been really slacking in the "clean bedroom" department.

Eventually, we're going to have to roll up our sleeves and get crackin on that baby's room. I look in there and just shrug and walk out...I'm not sure why - I just haven't had the slightest bit of excitement about decorating that room. I have no plans to actually decorate anyway...just paint and we've got to sand and paint some of the furniture in there. I think we might end up with a soft green color on the walls and white furniture with some green accents. Nothing special - but neutral enough to go for either gender. I'm not really into cartoon characters or anything like that - so whatever bedding I choose will probably be really simple...sister in law suggested bugs or frogs...but I don't know - I don't want a THEME...and bugs or frogs would be too themelike for me. I guess one of these days I'll have to see what I can find that suits my fancy (or not-so-fancy as it may be)

I brought my camera with me today so I can take some belly pics...but I've got to wait until I'm alone because taking pictures like that with coworkers around is borderline creepy.

18 week belly pictures to be posted today!


Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Sinking in

Hmmm....allright - so it's just a little bit more real now...



Have a listen:











We were on our way home from the doctor's office and reality sort of gripped me right in the throat for a moment. All this time I think I easily could have convinced myself that I've been making all this up somehow. Tired? that's easy...not enough sleep - Clothes not fitting? Too many Doritoes! Feeling weepy and emotional? hellllooooo period.


But now? Now that some doctor let me hear a "WAHWAHWAHWAH" sound (kinda reminds me of the teacher on peanuts, ha!) and actually said "That's your baby!"


whoooooooooaaaaaaaa...hold the phone. Wee bit too much reality for me today.



I've gained exactly 1 pound...which is pretty sweet - because in all honesty...I could have taken an extra gulp of air before stepping on that scale and it would have made a difference. I can SMELL a cheeseburger and gain 5 pounds, no joke.
Doc says all is going well, it was a good strong heartbeat - and they'll schedule me for an ultrasound in 5 weeks.
Every day that I wake up feeling good I am grateful because I know alot of people who's pregnancies have not been so easy.


While we were waiting...this woman and her husband came in - she waddled in I should say. This tiny itty bitty little thing with this HUUUUUUUUUGE Belly. She sat down and she and the lady next to her started talking - and I heard her say that she was due on Sept. 11th. Holy Moly...that's 8 days overdue - and she looked it. She looked like she just wanted to lay down get that kid O-U-T. Poor thing.



Okay *shiver* , moving on...



Last Sunday, I fell asleep on the bed in the afternoon, and I was starting to wake up when I hear hubs walking down the hall, only to find this:



Yes folks, that would be our DOG and our most alpha male CAT sleeping butt to butt snuggled up against me. I find it interested how the one cat we thought would have the most problem with our sweet puppy has actually taken to her the most. I mean seriously - they're SLEEPING together. And not just that, but Tweak is actually on his back in quite possibly the most relaxed position I've ever seen him. Suuuure, they may act like they're mortal enemies - but now we know the truth. Don't ever let anyone tell you that cat's won't adjust to a new family member because THIS is living proof.


Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Lagger

Sooo - let's see, what's new?
I'm about 13 weeks along now...all my pants and skirts are uncomfortable and annoying...I sort of just WOKE UP with a belly last week, which is wierd - I thought it was still too early for that...and I'm hoping there is only ONE kid in there. (I know twins are cool and everything, but I'm not sure I'm cut out for that job...) I have a doctor's appointment tomorrow and we'll be listening for a heartbeat so that will be exciting. It'll be nice to know that everything is okay in there. I already feel oddly protective of this little critter and I find myself constantly putting my hand on my belly. I'm thinking I should start doing some belly shots so I can see just how massive I get...hahaha - this is going to be a wild ride. I'm no skinny minny as it is...add a kid to the mix and I feel like I might just topple over forward.
This whole thing has gone so smoothly so far, I feel incredibly blessed. I still haven't gained any weight...still craving fruit - although now it's all about apples - no morning sickness. I'm heading into the 2nd trimester, or the "golden trimester", and I've already noticed my energy level improving, and my dizzy spells have gone away - which is AWESOME because those were a real pain.
This weekend will be a challenge for me because we'll have all 3 of our neices for a couple of days. I love those girls to pieces, but they run us ragged. At 8, 6 and 2...they are so full of energy!

Allright, enough baby/kid talk...

I'm not sure if I mentioned it before...but I did a little barrel garden this year. I planted sugar cherry tomatoes, yellow pear tomatoes, early girl tomatoes, yellow crookneck squash, and zucchini. I also attempted to sprout seeds for different kinds of melons and peppers and peas...but I failed miserably. My seed sprouts became death row rather quickly as they need to be "tended to" daily - and...well...my lazyness takes over for any plant that needs daily care.
BUT - my early girl tomatoes took off like wildfire and before I knew it, I had a HUGE and wonderful green and leafy plant with noooooo tomatoes on it. My other tomatoes were just growing very slowly and not really doing much either. My squash was pretty much doomed from the start. I had a couple days of hope for them, but eventually they succumbed to my black thumb and have all but shriveled up and died.
So finally about mid-summer, I noticed I had some green tomatoes on all my plants. I kept looking and looking and nothing was happening. I moved the plants around thinking maybe they needed more sun...but nope, nothing happening
FINALLY last week - I had tomatoes starting to turn red! Sunday I had my first big harvest (and did I take a picture? NOPE - because I suck) and I filled a big bag with big red tomatoes, little sweet cherry tomatoes and yummy yellow pear tomatoes...and I sent them all home with our friends. What IS IT about homegrown tomatoes that are so much better than storebought? They have an entirely different flavor - it's completely amazing to me. I've stood out there watering them and just found myself picking and eating little maters right off the vine. The. Best.
I feel like inside me there is this little farm girl in an apron and a straw hat who loves to garden, and enjoy the fruits of her labor...but she gets beat down by the lazy, tv watching bum I really am.
Speaking of tv...is anyone else as excited as I am for all the season premiers??? Greys, the new Private Practice, Survivor, Kid Nation, ANTM, etc, etc, etc....
I can't figure out how I enjoyed this time of year before I got a DVR - because that thing is a LIFESAVER. Seriously, if you don't have one...get thee a DVR pronto!

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Tired

So on my last post, Lori asked what Linguica is...and I guess it didn't dawn on me that alot of people don't know what that is - but then I remembered that hubby's family from Georgia came a few years ago, and they had no idea what it was either. (They loved it by the way)
I guess the best way to describe it is like a spicy sausage...but not too spicy, it's just got a bite to it. I guess sort of a cross between kielbasa and chorizo. We usually throw it on a grill in one big link...and then when it gets all crispy and cooked on the outside, you slice it in bite size peices and squeeze lime over the top...mmmmmm, so good. But the regular linquica is usually made from pork and it's terribly high in fat and calories (of course, isn't everything totally yummy?) so I decided to give the turkey linguica a try. It's not the same...but the flavor was good, and I felt better about not consuming all that fat.
I remember as a kid, going to our local farmers market and sitting on the curb eating a bbq'd linguica on a stick...oh wow, what a memory - those things were SO GOOD.
Anyway, I hope that somewhat explains it :)


You ever get that feeling that you could close your eyes and fall asleep RIGHT NOW?
These last couple of days I've really had to fight and struggle to keep myself awake at work...my body just feels heavy and dreary, and I could seriously just put my head down and sleep right now.
I think this whole feeling tired thing has been my biggest challenge so far - it's hard to concentrate or be motivated to do anything other than sleep...which is why I go home and crash on the couch, even though I have all these great intentions of catching up on laundry or emptying the dishwasher.
I must say, hubster has been AWESOME when it comes to helping me around the house - I had no idea he could be so domesticated, but apparantly me carrying his child is a huge motivation :)

This morning I had my first inkling that my clothes are getting tighter. My jeans are just a wee bit snug in the waist...and it's wierd because it's not like I've gained a few pounds and they're tight all over - it's just in the belly. I feel like I've got this little mound...very strange feeling.
My sister in law hooked me up with all her maternity clothes - so when the time comes, at least I won't have to run out and spend a ton of money on new stuff that I'm only going to wear for a short time - I've got a huge storage container full of clothes!
I've actually already saved quite a bit of money on stuff like that - by the time my last neice was born, my brother and sister in law got alot of new stuff for her....and since she's their last one - I got a bunch of hand me downs that are practically brand new. I have a swing, an exersaucer, a papasan bouncy chair, and little saucer carrier thing that you can take to the beach and it zips up with a netting material so the baby doesn't get hit with sand or sun...I also have a little santa suit for Christmas and a baby chick halloween costume.
Instead of a frilly bassinette, I'm going to use a wooden cradle that my mom used with my brother and I - my parents are getting it all cleaned up and put together and then my sister in law is going to sew bumper pads and sheets for it.
As for the bedroom, all I pretty much need is a crib...which my parents are going to buy. We're going to sand and paint the furniture in the room. There is a bookshelf that my dad built when I was about 4 years old...and then we have mark's dresser from when he was a kid...and my desk from when I was a kid (which will be used as a changing table). I kind of like the idea of using our childhood stuff for our own kid...I guess I'm sentimental in that way.
This weekend we're going to the paint store to try and agree on a color to paint the room. Anyone have any suggestions?? I've read that you're not supposed to paint a baby's room yellow because it makes them cry.....hahahahaha - not sure how much truth there is to that. I've been thinking about a white with a tinge of blue. I want the walls to be light because that room is very dark - and I think a very subtle light blue wouldn't necessarily have to be boy related. I'm SOOO not into pink - in fact I can't stand it, so if we have a girl...it won't really matter.
I've also toyed with the idea of doing color on just the bottom half and putting a chair rail halfway up - or maybe a simple border of some kind.
Honestly, if it were completely up to me - I'd probably just leave it the way it is, stick a crib in there and call it good. hee!
Sooo, suggestions - I need suggestions, since I'm missing that "decorator" gene.

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Going Overboard

Yesterday...I stopped at our local fruit/veggie stand, and I bought $26 worth of stuff. I don't think I've ever spent that much there before.
I bought:

A big watermelon
8 large nectarines
10 kiwi
1 giant bag of grapes
6 bananas
8 zucchini squash
1 canteloupe
1/4 flat of strawberries (3 of those little green baskets full)
1 big basket of cherries
1 small basket of blackberries

I went home and made a huge bowl of fruit salad so I could keep it at work and nibble off it for the next couple of days. Or at least that's what was SUPPOSED to happen. Let's just say that by 5pm yesterday, my head was practically inside the empty bowl licking the juice off the sides. Hubby came home yesterday and saw all the bags of fruit sitting on the dining table and just looked at me...he goes "daaaang, you really ARE craving fruit aren't you?"
ummm, ya THINK?

I mean, I like fruit as much as the next gal...but I NEVER eat it like this. It's incredibly bizarre.

I haven't been to the actual grocery store in a while - mainly because getting myself to work and back home is about all I can muster...and I hate grocery shopping anyway. SO last night, at about 7pm...I was trying to think about what to have for dinner...and I ended up scrambling some eggs with some sliced up zucchini, some chopped leftover turkey linguica, and some shredded cheese. OH DAMN was it good! I just whipped it up hoping it would be good, and it was not only good, it was pretty healthy too. Eggs GOOD, Squash GOOD, turkey linguica? not GREAT...but much healthier than regular linguica, shredded cheese EH, but I need the calcium since I'm not a milk drinker.

I've been sticking with water and crystal light these days. I have a diet soda on occasion - but I've cut out coffee completely which has been SO FRIGGIN HARD. Especially since I'm still walking early in the mornings. BUT, I feel good about all the water I've been drinking, and my skin shows it - I'm all glowy and stuff.

Okay - my appt is in about 2 hours...I'm feeling kinda anxious and not sure why. Maybe because this whole baby thing will be so much more REAL after the doctor confirms everything? And if we can hear the heartbeat? Ay-yi-yi...that's so REAL. I've been kinda floating around in this cloudy, foggy version of myself. People ask me about the pregnancy and I'm always caught a little bit off guard...or they talk about the baby itself and I'm kinda like "huh? I can't think about that yet...still processing the positive test at this point!" But today - a doctor will look at me and poke and prod and examine me and will treat me like a PREGNANT PERSON. That's just weird. This is all quite hard to comprehend at this point....and alot of people seem surprised that I feel this way. Most people say "oh, but it's such a beautiful thing, a precious baby" - and in my mind, I'm still kinda freaked about the whole thing. I'm living in a realm of surreal.

You know, I just looked at the calender, and my due date being March 24th is the day after Easter. HUH.

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Cooking right along...

I CANNOT get enough fruit into this body of mine. Grapes are my main thing...fresh from the fridge, crisp and cold. Watermelon too - cold and juicy. Everything has to be cold and fresh. I can't eat room temperature grapes - they gotta be COLD. So wierd. I'm just thankful that I'm craving something healthy....let's hope it stays that way! I'm at the point where I feel like I can't suck my stomach in anymore - all my clothes fit fine, I just walk around feeling like I have bad posture or something...very bizarre. Last weekend, I had my first "oh crap, I'm gonna puke" moment. We were in Petco with our dog, and we walked past this group of young men...I was hit with this WAVE of STENCH - it was BO. My eyes watered and I hightailed it to the back of the store where I paced around going "don'tthrowupdon'tthrowupdon'tthrowup" while taking big gulps of non-b0 filled air. Oh man, it was HORRIBLE. Course hubs smelled it, but he goes "it wasn't THAT bad". Oh yeah? to my incredibly sensitive nose, it smelled like that unwashed manboy had crawled right up my nostril and rubbed his stench into all my nose hairs. In that moment, it was the worst smell ever - and I COULD have tossed my cookies, but I refrained. Later on that same day, I went to my parents house to feed their dog and the same thing happened when I opened the can of dog food. I got hit with this wave of worst smell ever and I had to actually put the can down and go outside for fresh air to avoid losing it. I actually held my breath and forked out that food faster than you can blink an eye because I really didn't think I could handle it for another second. So wierd how pregnancy makes your senses so much stronger. Stuff like that would normally only make me flinch...not go running away with tears in my eyes. I'm 9 weeks along and we have our first doctor's appointment tomorrow. Hubs is taking the day off work so he can be there to meet Doc and we're HOPING to hear a heartbeat. We've been told it's still early, so we may or may not hear it - but we're really hoping because it'll be rare that hubs can take a day off for my appointments. I'll be doing most of them by myself. Please everyone, keep your fingers and toes crossed for a heartbeat tomorrow!

Friday, August 10, 2007

I'm here...

I'm here....and I'm :
Yeah....weird.
In fact, I didn't believe it - so I took 4 more tests....2 more that same day - 1 the next day - and 1 a couple days after that. JUST to be sure.
I'm still kind of in that "head in the clouds" stage. I'm not quite sure what to do with myself.
I had my first visit with a Doula at my doctor's office....we basically went over all the paperwork and she answered my multitude of questions. I'll be seeing the doctor on the 22nd - which will put me at about 9 weeks.
Holy crap you guys....I'm gonna have a baby!

Monday, April 30, 2007

Finally, the bday post is up!

So....now that over 2 weeks have gone by since my Georgia's puppy birthday - I finally got around to posting pics!
Since my parents and my brother and his crew were all coming over (with their dogs) - we decided to keep it simple and made a big giant salad and ordered a big giant pizza - and when I say Giant...I mean FRICKING HUGE.
Observe:
Look people...it is EXACTLY the same width as my dining table. Hubs had to put the seat flat in the back of the car to get it in...and I'm not even kidding you when I say that we barely got it through the front door. Biggest pizza I've ever seen....and only $33! This sucker fed 6 hungry adults and 3 kids and we still had plenty of leftovers. If you look in the picture below...you can see the size of the slices compared to the plates - yeah, they didn't exactly fit. It was pretty funny. Especially when the kids walked in and saw the box - they said "WHOA! That's the biggest pizza I've ever seen!"
(gotta tell ya, that pizza is looking pretty tasty right about now)
My put-martha-stuart-to-shame wonderful sister in law and neice even made party hats for all the dogs!

Complete with names - Jasper - Georgia - and Libby...how cute is THAT?
Course we had to try it on, but my mom had to hold her so I could get a picture

I wanted to get a picture of all three dogs wearing their hats - but it just wasn't meant to be...they were too excited about the cupcakes. Yes, hubster made them CUPCAKES. Peanut butter and carrot with whipped cottage cheese frosting. finger licking awful...

The funny thing is - when hubs went to frost the cupcakes...we noticed a couple of bites missing - and we surmised that possibly the kids decided to partake and then thought otherwise - which makes me laugh and laugh...because I can imagine the look on their faces when they realized it wasn't exactly tasty.

The dogs LOVED them though - and inhaled those things. Big hit for hubster!

Here is Libby, happy as a clam about her cupcake:

Although I didn't expect it - Georgia was even brought GIFTS...

Which hubster sat with her and opened...and found TREATS! and TOYS and all sorts of goodies:

(ha-ha - she's so black in this picture that you can't even see her face)

Here's Jasper looking on saying "hey, I want thome of thothe!"

And so we taught Georgia about sharing....and hubster got surrounded just like at little kids birthday parties...


It was a fun night! We put the cats in our bedroom so that we could leave the backdoor open and so there were dogs running in and out and kids running in and out and it was chaos everywhere....and soooo funny.

Georgia passed out after they all left and we found her sleeping with her new lizard toy

I know...I think we may have too much time on our hands - but she's our baby for now and we love her to pieces :)