Tuesday, December 20, 2011

It's Coming on Christmas

...they're cutting down trees...love that song. Joni Mitchell, in case you were wondering.

I can think of a hundred things I should be doing right now, but I just did a hundred things.  I am going to sit here and try to blog [I've gotten as far as a title for this post in the last week] unless my little candy cane wakes up from her nap.

How are you doing this Christmas week?  How many days is it now, 4? 5?  I have no idea.  Are you stressed?  Is your kitchen covered in flour?  Do you have mistletoe and presents under the tree?  I can say yes to that last one. 

Christmas is my favorite time of year.  I get antsy at Halloween because I know it's almost time to put up the tree.  I have a zillion Christmas decorations that take me forever to put in just the right spot.  My husband is the master at outdoor light displays.  I know he can't wait for the day we have a much bigger home with all kinds of angles and tight spots to illuminate.  :) 

We love sitting in the living room with nothing but the glow of the tree, sipping hot cocoa and watching our favorite Christmas movies.  I so enjoy baking up all kinds of treats for our friends and family to enjoy.  I also enjoy preparing pans of cinnamon rolls, light catering and desserts for "customers" around town. 

This year is just a liiiiiiiiitle different.
I'm not missing a thing, though.  I didn't put up as many decorations as I usually do, and I'm certainly not doing all of the baking that I have in the past.  It's kind of nice, actually.  Sometimes I feel like parts of Christmas just "aren't the same", but then I have to remind myself that if "things" are what make Christmas special, then I'm missing the message of the manger. 

So what can we do to keep from getting upset or stressed when things aren't going our way during the holidays?  How do we stay focused?  And by focused I do not mean the intense lady in the Target ads, although she is funny.  Between holiday travel, family gatherings, and trying to find that perfect gift we can find ourselves just rushing through this time of year.  Or worse, we actually get so caught up in making merry that we don't necessarily feel stressed but we are just outside of what we should be focused on.  I don't think it's bad to bake cookies and shop, but in my own life and in our family we are starting to shift away from what Christmas has always been.

Many folks are on a soapbox this time of year about keeping Christ in Christmas.  Truly, He is Christmas.  We're the ones who changed, not Him. 

If you are one of those folks who is feeling the yuletide pressure, let me encourage you to just take it easy.  Breathe.  It isn't too late to embrace the advent season.  You don't have to have 8 kinds of cookies baked, and you certainly don't have to spend all your Christmas money on gifts that may end up being returned.  Here's how we've kept it simple: homemade.  We love giving gifts to coworkers, friends, and neighbors who stop by during the season.  Some great ideas are homemade hand scrubs, cookies, pancake mixes, and hot chocolate.  Put something in a jar, tie it with a nice bow and there you go, a great Christmas gift.  I love to give and receive homemade food gifts.  If you're looking for an idea, here's the hot cocoa recipe that I give away each year [which I may or may not have stolen from Alton Brown].

2 cups powdered sugar
1 cup cocoa
2 tsp cornstarch
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp fine salt
Dash cayenne

Just whisk it all together and package it nicely for your guests.  Add the instructions [1/4 cup mix to each cup of hot milk] on a decorative tag so that they know how to make it.  You should end up with enough for about 20 cups of hot cocoa.  I usually give folks enough for 4 cups. 

I hope this helps.  This is about 10 posts crammed into one.  I've been sleeping instead of blogging.  :)

Merry Christmas!

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

A Big Weekend for Kathryn

Kathryn is 6 weeks old now!  I just can't believe it.  Although she is cleared to go out and be with the unwashed public, I am still keeping her as sheltered as possible.  However, she got plenty of exposure to people this weekend.  Friday night we had a Christmas party with our small group.  It was so fun, especially with other babies being around and everyone just having a great time. 

On Sunday we did her dedication at church and her grandparents came to visit.  In our denomination, we dedicate our children to the Lord at our churches as a public display of our commitment to raise our children with the opportunity to come to faith in Christ through following Biblical commands of parenting.  We chose a verse for her from 1 Samuel, verses 27-28 [emphasis mine]: For this child [we] prayed, and the Lord answered [our] prayer.  Now we are giving [her] to the Lord, and [she] will belong to the Lord [her] whole life.  It was special that we got to share our dedication service with the Propes family, who were dedicating their third child whom they adopted this year from India.  They have meant a lot to us in our time here in Kentucky, and are such an encouragement on our adoption journey.  Although we had been praying so hard about adoption, the Lord chose to bless us with a biological child.  We know we are still called to adopt and await that time with eager anticipation.

On Sunday night we had a Christmas party for the college students we work with in our church.  It was the first time that I had thrown a party where I just opened up bags of treats and snacks [from Trader Joe's, of course!] rather than making myself crazy trying to cook a hundred things.  It turned out great and I think everyone was full for a long night of studying for exams.  Kathryn's friend Grey also came to the party with his mom and dad.  Grey is Kathryn's first friend.  I can't wait for her to start interacting more with him.  He just had his first birthday last week.

I also have to share this photo of Justin.  He made homemade biscuits on Saturday all by himself, and he is quite proud.  :)

Monday, December 5, 2011

It's a mystery to me.

I love my daughter. 

I know I am so lucky that she sleeps 4-5 hours at night, eats, and then returns to sleep for another 1 or 2 hours.

But I sure do wish she'd take a nap once a day, at least.

All morning she will fuss, eat, play, fight sleep, fuss, etc.  Then Justin comes home for lunch, sings to her and gets her right to sleep.

But as soon as he leaves...those eyes pop right open.

I don't get it.


Wednesday, November 30, 2011

A Thankful Reflection

"We can only be said to be alive in those moments when our hearts are conscious of our treasures."
-Thornton Wilder

It really is true that you can never be fully prepared for motherhood until you happen upon it.  Whether you give birth, adopt, or foster, you don't know what to expect and each day brings something new. 

I thought I knew what tired was until I started living on 2 hours of sleep.  It's gotten better thank goodness, but it is amazing what you can still accomplish on so little sleep.

I thought I knew worry until I had a little life to worry about.

I thought I knew faith until I had a little life to worry about.

I thought I knew gratitude until I looked into her big blue eyes for the first time.

I hope she never stops taking my breath away.  I don't want to ever take for granted the precious little miracle that she is; a true gift from the Lord!  Even though we didn't have fertility problems or major health issues to overcome, she is still our miracle. 

We are abundantly grateful. 

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

One Month Old!

Surely I must be sleepwalking dreaming because I cannot believe Kathryn came into the world a whole month ago!  Yesterday, officially, was her one month birthday.  We did not have cake.  We had some spit up, 6 poopie diapers, a doctor's appointment, and no naps.  We know how to celebrate!

At her one month appointment, she weighed in at 7lb 12oz.  I feel certain that this is the only time in a little lady's life that eager anticipation is had for the scale to keep climbing.  Since her last weigh in she has put on an ounce a day.  She also grown 3 inches in length, measuring at 21 1/4 inches! 

She is responding more and more to us and her environment.  I moved her swing in front of the Christmas tree because she loves the lights.  Her swing has a mobile that moves in a circle with a mirror in the center and I've caught her watching it a few times.  She is all smiles these days!  She started smiling at 2 weeks old and will give us these huge grins!  She is also really strong, kind of a ninja baby.  But I keep telling myself that she isn't stronger than me [yet].  She always has to be moving in some way, and gets bored easily in the baby any baby apparatus that we attempt to occupy her with.  We ordered a really cool play mat so I can't wait for it to arrive.

Our pediatrician noticed an issue with her hip at her first meeting with him, and after a month it is still there so tomorrow we are having an ultrasound done.  I'm not really sure what the problem could be exactly, but I know that she may have to wear a brace for a few months.  Please say a prayer for her if you don't mind.  We have been blessed so much more than we deserve with a healthy pregnancy and healthy baby.  We know that in all things we will give thanks to the Lord.  I'll update on the situation as soon as we have results.  It may turn out to be nothing.

Now that we've made it through the first month, I feel like we can make it through anything.  We've had some tough days and even tougher nights [especially since she doesn't like to nap], but we are so happy to be Kathryn's mom and dad. 

She is actually napping right now but I expect her to wake up ready to eat any moment.  I can't complain too much about her not napping though, because in general she is in bed before midnight and sleeps 4-5 hours.  Then we wake up, eat, change her diaper, and she sleeps another 2.  She eats every hour [sometimes twice] but the good news is that we are pretty much off formula.  Once she reached her birthweight I wanted to phase out of using it but I was going to let her do that on her own.  Over the weekend she went from having 4-5 bottles a day in addition to nursing to having one or none.  It is exhausting feeding her so much!  The lactation consultants and pediatrician in the hospital told me to feed her every 3-4 hours...DOESN'T WORK!  We are all so much happier and well-rested now that I nurse her on demand. 
On Thanksgiving it was just the 3 of us.  We had a great day of just relaxing and enjoying Justin being home for a few days.  She took a couple naps which allowed us to put together our little Thanksgiving meal.  We also pulled out our Christmas decorations and got those going.  It was a great day!

Today I had one of those moments when I realized that it was lunch time and I was still in the same clothes I had worn all day yesterday--with a few spots of spit up, mind you-- and had yet to brush my teeth.  Yuck.  I'm all fixed now, though, don't worry. ;)  Dinner is actually in the oven...it's amazing what I can accomplish when she naps! 

I can't help but share a couple funny pictures---enjoy!

Monday, November 28, 2011

Photo Card

Merry Candy Dots Christmas
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Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Bumps in the Road

I don't want to jinx anything but my little one is actually sleeping.  Last night I rocked her for awhile [don't judge me] to be certain she was asleep.  I ended up rocking myself to sleep as well, but I did put her in her bed at 12:45.  She didn't wake up until after 5!  We snuggled, ate, and changed her pants and then went back to sleep for another 2 hours...whoa!  AND...she has eaten again and is now sleeping peacefully in her swing.  I don't know what to do.  Justin already folded all the laundry. 

I think I mentioned yesterday that Kathryn is not much of a sleeper.  In the hospital it was hard to tell because of all the nighttime interruptions.  I sort of assumed that all newborns slept like 18 hours a day.  I hear that some do, but they must come from a different part of heaven than my daughter did.  It's only been in the past 3 days that she has taken decent naps.  She's more of a power napper; she'll close her eyes and breathe deeply for about 10 minutes and then her eyes pop right back open and she's ready to go for another four hours.  We even had some days when she did take a nap but didn't close her eyes again for 12 hours.  That makes for one tired mama!

In the hospital, we did have a few hiccups.  On Sunday [the third day] she gradually became fussier and fussier.  Well, let me back up.  On Saturday & Sunday I had a really hard time feeding her.  I didn't know that my milk wasn't just readily available, and neither did Kathryn.  She was hungry and I wasn't getting it right.  I spent a lot of time with the lactation consultants on those 2 days.  Of course she could latch on while they were there but every other time she needed to eat was a struggle.  So, fast forward to Sunday, and we were headed toward an international incident.  For 8 hours or so, she screamed.  We tried everything.  At some point [I think around 4am] our nurse took Kathryn for her nightly assessment and told us that she had lost 14oz that day, taking her weight down to just 6lbs.  She lost almost an entire pound in one day!  Our nurse told us that we may need to supplement with formula, gave Kathryn back to us, and left.  At that point we were at our wit's end, and Justin called the nurse back and asked for formula.  I'm not sure why she didn't give it to us in the beginning.  Kathryn was thrilled and so were we.

One other problem Kathryn had was that her frenulum needed to be clipped. Apparantly it was all the way to the end of her tongue.  Thankfully, the wonderful pediatrician at the hospital did that for us the morning we went home without us even knowing.  The problem with her having that type of frenulum is that in the womb she learned to suck incorrectly.  So she is having to learn to suck all over again.  I nurse with a shield which is a lifesaver, but she is slowly getting interested in nursing without it.  Here's one of her milk drunk faces.  :)

Two days after we came home from the hospital [5 days old; 3 days since she lost the 14oz] we went to our pediatrician for a weight check.  She had gained back 5oz, but her doctor told me she wasn't getting enough to eat.  We were excited about the weight gain but our bubble was burst when I felt like I had been starving my child.  No wonder she had been screaming all night!  Giving her formula--not to mention discovering gas drops--was making her feel much better.  The next week at her appointment, she had gained another 5 1/2 ounces, but that still wasn't enough.  So I started giving her 2 ounces of formula after each time she nursed.  Ever so slowly, she became a more calm and satisfied baby.  Last week at her appointment, she weighed 7lbs and 1.5oz--victory!  She goes back on Monday for her one month [I can't believe it] appointment.  She should weigh pretty close to 8 lbs by then. 

Nursing is still pretty tough, but it's much better than it was.  I'm offering her less formula and nursing more often.  As in, almost every hour in the evenings but only every 2 or 3 during the day.  Hey, whatever works for her!  I'm not very sore, although sometimes I have to remember that nursing her for an hour [she likes to savor each drop] is way more important than anything else I could be doing. 
All in all, we are thankful for such a healthy little one and we realize that our "bumps in the road" are totally normal and nothing compared to the struggles that so many other people have to endure with their precious babies.  We are thankful every day for this sweet face.

Monday, November 21, 2011

She's Here

On October 28 at 8:21am, Kathryn Grace entered the world.  I had prayed many prayers for her birth, not the least of which was for her to come out screaming.  Which she did.  In fact, she loves to scream.  :)  She weighed 6lbs and 14oz, and was 18 3/4 inches long.  Tiny, tiny, tiny. 
It was a frigid morning as we made the 61 mile drive from our house to the hospital where she was delivered by c-section.  I was terrified.  As we made the walk from the parking garage to the labor & delivery floor, I was a bit weepy.  I thought when we got up there that I'd have more time to sit and avoid the inevitable, but our nurse was ready for us.  There is a lot that goes into a c-section!  All I can say is that I'm thankful mine was scheduled and not an emergency. 

One of my other prayers was for a great anesthesiologist.  I had imagined some crusty old man who would have no idea how I felt, but was blessed with Donna [who was in fact, not a crusty old man].  She was quite nurturing and when I got to the OR, had a shot of valium waiting on me.  She stayed by my head the whole time, explaining what was happening, distracting me when I started to fall apart, and brought much comfort to Justin and me.  When I heard my doctor say he'd made the uterine incision, Donna took our camera and documented each step of him pulling Kathryn out.  What a priceless memory!

Justin said as soon as they pulled her out that I looked at him and said,"I feel so much better!"  I don't remember saying it, but I do remember feeling it.  One of the good things about a c-section is that you get to stay in the hospital for 4 days.  That gave me plenty of time to be taken care of by amazing nurses and kind of get the hang of things.  Although, we were quite ready to get home by the fourth day. 

My recovery has been great.  I won't lie; it was quite painful to move around for the first 10 days or so.  I may have pushed myself a bit too hard with moving around, but it was better than the alternative.  I haven't had much pain after the first 10 days and have hardly bled at all.  I went for my post delivery checkup last Friday and everything is looking great. 

I can't write about her birth without bragging about my husband.  In the hospital, he stayed with her every minute she was away from me.  I told him that when they took her from the OR to the nursery that he needed to go with her.  She needed one of her parents.  I was going to be fine.  He listened. 
He changed her diapers and picked her up when she cried for those first few days because I couldn't get up.  He has waited on me hand and foot since we got home, and especially after my mom left.  He is such a great dad.  I know he feels bad that he sleeps at night while I'm up with her, but I keep telling him that the best way for him to help is to be rested so that he can provide for us.  I have always been grateful that I got to marry him, but now I am even more overwhelmed with that blessing. 

So how is it going?  Well, we've made it 3 weeks and 3 days.  I think that means we're ok.  :)  We were blessed to have my mom stay with us for 2 weeks [perhaps against her will].  She cooked, cleaned, and even had my dad vaccuum the ceiling when he was here.  She comforted Kathryn those first few nights when all she did was scream, and all I did was cry.  I don't think we would have made it without her.  We were scared when she left, but mostly just sad that she lives so far away and won't get to see her as often.  Looking forward to Christmas though!
There is so much more to share, but I'm already on a shoestring here with "me" time.  I will share more about how her personality is, but suffice it to say that she is not much of a sleeper.  So I have to go now...haha.

Thursday, October 27, 2011


Because I've been so sporadic in blogging lately and will probably continue to be for the next few weeks, I realized that I should take a moment to post anything I've neglected to share.  Although I should probably be dusting something or cleaning my kitchen floors, allow me to pause for a bit and do some sharing. 

First, these Apple Cider Doughnut Holes from Sugarcrafter.  These are especially good when dunked in caramel and sprinkled with a little sea salt.  Just do it.

Here's a picture of my handsome husband after he got the carseat installed.  He's done such a great job on all this stuff.  Pretty soon he'll be putting together her first bike.

Here's one of the pooch.  This was when she was outside while Justin put the carseat in.  It was a warm day so she took the liberty of digging a hole for herself to lay in. 

Here's another one of her napping in the baby's room.

A couple of weeks ago we had a surprise visit from some friends who were in town.  The only thing cuter than this little chunk of a half-Asian baby is the one I'm giving birth to tomorrow.  :)

This picture is from Monday night.  We had a late appointment [when we found out all the info for the c-section] so we met our friends Jean and Chad for dinner.  Jean and I have been friends for about 8 years or so.  We lived together after college and have been there for all the big moments [the small ones, too].  We've definitely seen each other through the best and the worst.  I'm so glad we got to get together and I'm so thankful that she's going to be there with me tomorrow.  I couldn't ask for a sweeter friend!

Yesterday we went back to the hospital [have I mentioned that it's 120 miles round trip???] to do the pre-op and registration stuff.  We met lots of sweet encouraging people throughout our day.  It's amazing how many people will talk to you when you're about to pop.  I know Justin has been praying that we can use this opportunity to share Christ with others, even if it's just through a friendly conversation.  We went to lunch and did a little shopping [not to mention getting soaked as we dashed in and out of stores], and ended our "last date as just us" at Starbucks.  I can still remember the first time we went to this specific location about 7 years ago, long before we started dating.  I remember going to this Starbucks with him the night we started dating.  We used to stop for old time's sake when we visited Lexington while we lived out of state.  Feeling nostalgic, we just had to go yesterday.

Well, I think that's about all of the most recent things to share.  I guess I better go pack my suitcase. 

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

A Special Delivery

If I know myself, by this time tomorrow I'll have cleaned everything from top to bottom.  I'll have run out of things to do and I will either collapse from exhaustion or completely fall apart emotionally.  Actually, I imagine both of those things will happen; it's all a question of timing. 

You see, Friday morning we are going to deliver our baby girl by c-section.  She can't be born the normal way.  My body is not "normal".  I won't have the birth that I had imagined.  There is a small part of me that feels a bit cheated because I will probably never know what it's like to give birth naturally.  I wanted a vaginal, intervention-free, medicine-free birth.  I wanted to work hard and long for that baby to come out.  Yes, I know it sounds crazy.  I wanted to know that I could do it.

If I have learned anything in the last 40 weeks and 2 days [or 36 weeks since that's probably when I found out], it's that I am not in control.  I wasn't in control of my uterus releasing the egg that was fertilized, and I'm certainly not in control of how this little girl enters the world.  We are blessed to have a healthy baby with no real worries up until now.  I am so thankful for a doctor who was observant enough to notice a potential problem several weeks ago.  I'm thankful he kept that in mind as the pregnancy progressed to full-term and finally, to my due date.  Having a c-section is at the very least eliminating a stressful delivery for the baby but perhaps, it is saving her life. 

It's been kind of strange to have known since earlier this week the exact timing of her birth.  We've known her birthday would be Oct. 28 since Monday.  But God knew her birthday even before we were born.  It's so exciting to finally get to meet her, kiss her little feet and put bows in all that hair we've seen on the ultrasounds.  I have to say though, that I am terrified of being cut open.  My emotions keep swinging from really excited and happy to scared and sad.  Everyone says that c-sections are so "easy".  I can conceptualize that in some aspects but mostly, I'm having trouble with having to lie there and give up complete control of my body.  It isn't as if I have any control anyway, but it is the illusion of it that gives me comfort. 

My mind keeps going to dark places, full of fear for all of the "what ifs?" of surgery.  What if something goes wrong?  An infection, a blood clot...worse?  YIKES!  I used to worry a lot about something being wrong with the baby, but I seem to have a peace there.  I am afraid of something happening to me.  I'm sure that's normal.  I haven't really had a lot of medical issues in my life, thank goodness, and only one other surgery when I was 15 [I freaked out for that one as well].  I just want to get through to the other side without allowing my fears to rob me of too much of the good part of this experience.  The fact is, having a c-section is so contrary from all of the things I've read and researched.  The system that is in place for this type of delivery is necessary, but I worry that it might prevent the baby from having the best start in life.  What if I can't breastfeed her right away?  I can't do skin-to-skin as soon as she's born because I'll be incapacitated.  It makes me sad to think of her laying in her little bed in the nursery without me there.

Today we listened to a sermon from our former pastor.  The focus was not worrying about money, but I really needed to hear the encouragement not to worry.  If you can't tell, I struggle immensley with this.  My life's motto is: "Worrying works! 99% of what I worry about never happens."  But God hasn't called me to that.  If we say we follow Christ with our lives but don't trust Him, then we're really walking around as atheists because our lives don't reflect what we're saying with our mouths.  Of course no one wants to be cut open; naturally there are risks to any surgery.  But living life is a risk!  Because I say that He is Lord, I don't get to make the rules.  I don't get to trust God with our finances, our callings, our everyday needs but not with my very life.  It's all or nothing.

I have no doubt that we will all get through this.  It's one scary hour to get to another step in our life [a very cute and cuddly step!].  If you would like to pray for us, I have some specific requests:
*That I will have the peace that passes all understanding about having this surgery
*A healthy, pink baby that screams at the top of her lungs when she meets air
*There would be no infection, reaction to anesthesia or other complications
*A quick recovery for both of us so we can begin breastfeeding and bonding within just a few minutes of the surgery ending
*Safe travel for all of our family and friends coming to be with us

Thanks a lot and we'll keep you posted.  Can't wait to post some pictures of our little girl!

Thursday, October 20, 2011

It's almost Halloween

I bet ya'll thought I done did gave birth already.  Well, I haven't.  Soon and very soon, though [we hope].

Have you been getting ready for Halloween?  We've kept it pretty simple around here this year since our focus has been preparing for a new baby.  There are a lot of things I've wanted to do, but I just don't have the energy.  I bet being this pregnant is almost the same as being like 105 years old.  I can get up and do something like load the dishwasher, but then I have to lay down.  We have a couple pumpkins on the porch and a mum that has all but dried up and died [but dead things work for Halloween decor too, right?].  I have some cute stuff up in the house and a guest even commented on the fact that I even had some fall decor in the bathroom.  Is that weird?  I always like to change things around for new seasons. 

I feel a little behind.  I haven't made homemade peanut butter cups yet or anything else festive.  I have been cooking a lot with pumpkin but mostly breakfast items for our college students on Sundays.  I did make a big batch of pumpkin granola from Two Peas and Their Pod.  Maria has some really great recipes on her site so check it out some time. 

Have you picked out your costume yet?  I'm hoping to go as not pregnant.  I'm looking forward to being home on Halloween this year with a snuggly baby and handing out candy to trick-or-treaters.  We never seem to be home on Halloween so I am going to enjoy it.  Here's a little costume advice: don't dress as a slutty anything.  You can do that the whole rest of the year.  Do something fun and creative.  Here are some great ideas from Nest of Posies.  I especially love the mini-Dwight. 

Another important aspect of Halloween is making sure you watch "It's the Great Pumpkin" at least 3 times.

I love the part where Sally gives Linus the business about cheating her out of "tricks or treats".  Hell does have no fury like a woman denied chocolate.  :)  I'm not one of those people who freaks out about Halloween.  I will not make my children dress as Bible characters and only go to church events labeled as "Harvest Celebrations" or "Trunks of Treats".  Those things are great but come on--live a little!  [I know, I know, I'm such a daring pastor's wife.]  I'm not into evil and ghoulish things but Halloween is supposed to be fun! 

*I waited an appropriate amount of time and lightning did not strike.

And don't even get me started on this guy:
I will not deny my children the magic of holidays.  I think there's a way to balance Christ and Santa, with Christ's birth taking center stage.  But I don't need to talk about that today.

I hope you're getting excited about Halloween!  If you need some inspiration, please visit some of these blogs:
Tasty Kitchen
Mel's Kitchen Cafe

Friday, October 7, 2011

About to Pop

According to my calculations, it's time to have this baby.  I'm still 18 days from my due date, but there's no shame in being early.  But, she's still so high up that today my doctor didn't even check my cervix.  Last week the doctor said that he didn't think she would "drop" at all.  Also it seems she's flipped over and my perfectly-head-down-for-the-last-37-weeks baby decided that she's tired of being upside down.  Awesome.  I'll head back to the doctor on Wednesday for a sixth ultrasound and a discussion about when and how we'll deliver her, I presume.  In an effort to make light of an uncomfortable situation, I've compiled a list.

You might be ready to pop if...

Your toes have fat rolls.

You've worn a path from the couch to the bathroom.

You completely fall apart when you see the preview for next week's Parenthood.  [anyone else with me?]

Your husband: puts your shoes on for you, picks up anything below your waist, does all of the cleaning, and considers it a treat when he's invited to share the bed with you rather than sleeping on the couch.

You find yourself obsessed with strange things like dust on the door frames and not letting the recycling pile up.

Dressing up means not wearing one of your husband's t-shirts. 
You swear you can breathe fire.

Your doctor looks at you with sympathy, and even though he's delivered like 2,000 babies he has no freaking idea how you feel and doesn't offer up anything helpful.

You feel like this. I've shared this photo before but it is so worth repeating.

I'm not complaining; I am simply reporting the facts.  We are so thankful to have made it this far and covet your prayers as we face a potentially tricky situation over the next few days of what's left in this pregnancy.  Despite the fact that this was a total derailment to "my plans", it's been a great experience.  I pray that all of my sweet friends who are struggling with conceiving will find their paths to motherhood soon, even if it's not in the way they thought it would happen.  We are grateful to have been given the gift of our daughter, and seriously cannot wait to see her face.

We hope to finish getting everything ready in her room tomorrow [emphasis: hope].  Justin will be installing the carseat and that's really all that's left to do.  It won't be long before she's here, and all of this back pain, frequent urination, and lack of energy will all be worth it.  I have to say, I've enjoyed all of the ice cream and restaurant-picking of the last few months.  Thanks to all of you for offering up such encouraging words throughout this time!  It's been a great experience.  Perhaps not one I'd like to revisit, but amazing nonetheless.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011


I have something to get off my chest.

Are you ready?

Ok, here goes.

I am not on Pinterest. 

Did you see that?  I AM NOT ON PINTEREST. 

I haven't died yet, either.  I still get lots of great ideas from the blogs I read.  And maybe, just maybe, I have a few more minutes of time on my hands [to waste in other ways, of course].  It's not that I don't want to, I'm just not "pinterested".  I have a hard time jumping into what everyone else is doing.  It's like how I've never seen Titanic.  Except, I'm pretty sure eventually I will join the pinning phenomenon but I have no plans to see Titanic.  Ever. 

Speaking of pinning, maybe someone would pin this if I were pin-able.
Well, maybe they wouldn't based on my photography skills.  But I wanted to show off something simple that I made from stuff I already had in my craft closet.  I just took an old frame and lined the center with burlap.  In the center is just a throwaway coaster that looks like a leaf.  It's the last from a set of coasters I used to make invitations for a Halloween party back in 2009.  Cute, huh?  I have it hanging in our guest bath. 

What sorts of projects have you made for fall decor?  You're going to have to tell me here because I won't be following your Pinterest board.  :D

Sunday, October 2, 2011


Now that I'm rounding third with this pregnancy, here's what I'm a Nervous Nelly about:

*I've never made croissants.  I really, really want to, but I haven't yet.  I need to make them before the baby comes or else I may never get to do it.  Also, I should make them while I still have an excuse to eat whatever I want.

*Justin has never been to Disney World.  We always said we'd go before we had kids but didn't get around to it.  Now we have to wait at least 4 or 5 more years.  I'm sorry, honey.

*Who's going to do my laundry?  I know people will be trying to help and all after the baby's born, but I do. not. want. help. with. my. laundry.  Capish?  I have a weird thing about my dirty clothes mixing with other people.  But what if I can't do it?  What if I have a C-section and can't bend over to get the clothes?  Aghhh!

*The baby has lots of hair...but what if it's too much?  I may or may not be the kind of person who points out the lack of cuteness in other peoples' babies, never thinking that my own baby might not be that cute. 

*What if I can't ever wear a bikini again?  Oh wait...

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Almost There

It has occurred to me that I have only spent 25 days of 2011 not being pregnant.  Keeping up charts with temperatures, fluids, etc makes it possible to know the exact day of conception.  Of course, it also occurs to me that the aforementioned method is perhaps not the best way to prevent conception.  Perhaps I need a new approach.

I digress.

By the end of this week, I will be considered full term.  [Tap, tap, do you hear that, baby?]  That means that starting Saturday we can start saying "any day now" and "she's coming this month".  Exciting!  We just need her to stay put until Saturday because she isn't covered under my insurance until then, but that's a story for another day [read: Obama, I used to like you].  My days are filled with lots of resting in between small tasks like dishes, writing thank-yous, and trying to work on her room.  I have one art project left to do but I'm afraid it won't turn out so I keep putting it off.  We finally got her crib so we just need to get it in our posession and set it up [hopefully this weekend].  We are in the process of making a final list of absolute necessities so that we can make some final purchases as well.

It has been weird to have this little person growing inside me all this time.  I remember how excited I was to look pregnant and not just bloated.  And the glorious day when I had finally made it a week without throwing up!  When all the uncertainty gave way to those big kicks it started to feel like more of a reality.  I must admit that although I've "seen" her face with the ultrasounds, I haven't necessarily felt bonded to her.  It may be the fact that we've kept her name a secret and therefore haven't used it that much.  It's hard to explain; I mean, she does have her head right next to my bladder so it doesn't get much closer than that.  I did, however, have a dream the other night and I saw her face, chubby little cheeks and all.  That made me feel better.

I have always had this feeling that she would come earlier than her due date.  I know, I know, I'm delusional.  I bet everyone thinks that.  All that I've read points to the fact that first time moms always deliver later than expected.  We'll find out Friday at my next appointment if I've made any progress, and we'll be having ultrasound number 5.  I can't wait to see how big she's gotten!  At our last ultrasound she was only in the 30th percentile for growth so I hope she's packed on some pounds since then.  Also, we're having our pre-delivery meeting with our doula tomorrow night so I am really excited about that.

I am just giddy with excitement over having a little girl to dress up!  Justin has always made fun of me for wanting a live doll to dress up.  I guess he's right, though.  I think it's just the fact that this is my favorite time of year coupled with a baby girl on the horizon but I am just feeling overjoyed.  I am ready to get through labor and on the other side.  I am less nervous about pain than I am the emotional issues of having everyone from our lives swoop in at the same time.  But that's all I can say about that.  :)

Here's me with my sweet friend Corrie, 5 days after I saw those 2 little pink lines.  I actually had a waist then.

And here I was just a couple days ago.  The only waist I have now is elastic.  Oh well.