So Here's My Life

The things we make,
the food we eat and
the shenanigans in between.

A blog about making things by

Monday, November 30, 2009

The Great Day of Thanks.

So I've pretty much come to the realization that I just don't get around to blogging as much as I used to...and that's just the way it is. Oh well. I guess that's life when you have a baby.

The boy is getting bigger and bigger by the day. He is seriously so much fun. I fall more and more in love with him as the days progress. And he becomes more and more pleasant too! He is a little monkey these days - always into everything. He moves so fast. I've decided that I'm not in any hurry for him to learn to walk, even though it seems like it's just around the corner. I'm pretty sure that when he learns to walk, he probably won't want to be held much anymore. At least that's what I've witnessed with other people. I enjoy holding my baby.

We spent last week with my family in Ruidoso. We stayed in a log cabin out there. It was such a fun vacation for us. I forgot how nice it was to just sit around and do nothing. I don't get to do that very often anymore. Not since the boy came along. Here's a couple of the highlights:

- We celebrated my brother's 22nd birthday out there. We bought him a Transformer's watch, the 3rd season of Spongebob Square Pants, and a Snuggie. Yes, a snuggie. Then we hid them around the cabin and sent him on a scavenger hunt to find all of his presents. It was hysterical. Justin punished us by putting on Spongebob every time the TV was not being viewed.

- My son and my sister's son got to play with each other. It was so fun to watch. Those boys are so funny together.

- Beautiful 3 story cabin in the woods with a view of the mountains. Peaceful. Relaxing. Wonderful.

- Lighting a fire in the fireplace during the evening the first couple of nights. So nice. We had to stop lighting a fire because my brother had an asthma attack. Boo. But my brother's health is more important than a fire. Ha ha.

- Doing a lot of nothing. We really haven't had a vacation since before the boy was born. It was definitely needed.

We had such a great time. Once holiday down, two more to go.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Fall time

I just want you guys to know that Fall is my favorite time of year - the change in weather, leaves changing colors, the State Fair, the Balloon Fiesta, Pumpkin Patches, Thanksgiving. I love it all. So now you know. Consider yourselves informed.

Yesterday the baby turned 7 months old! I can't believe that time has gone by so quickly. As the days go by, this boy fills our hearts with more and more love. I LOVE this little guy - but I do admit that sometimes he makes me want to pull out my hair. Life is busy. He is crawling these days. I've baby-proofed the house and he loves his new found freedom. My life has recently gotten so much easier because of his new found mobility. Such a relief. He is also getting his first tooth! It has taken forever to come out, but I can finally see a little white dot on his lower gum where his little tooth is breaking through! He was such a little booger a couple of weeks ago when this tooth first started working its way up. He's not nearly as fussy now as he was a couple of weeks ago...except yesterday. Yesterday he was stubborn when it came to napping. (I'm pretty sure it was due to teething) He was SOOO tired but he refused to take any naps, despite all my efforts to get him to sleep. Eventually I got him to take a couple small naps yesterday. He also went to bed really early last night. And got up late this morning. That's what happens when you refuse to sleep. You know what else he's doing these days? Pulling himself up to the standing position. He's been doing this for about two weeks. It's so exciting, yet so nerve wracking - at least the falling part is for me. He also walks like a little speed machine when we hold his hands and walk with him. It's hysterical to watch how fast his little legs go.

Last weekend we took him to a pumpkin patch. It was such a fun thing to do with him. He totally had a blast, even though he had no clue what was going on. We took him from place to place at the farm showing him the goats (that tried to eat me), and the bunnies, walking through the corn maze, watching the pumpkin cannon (which scared him to death...poor kid), on the hayride. He even got to play in the dirt for the first time. It was so funny to watch him. (our backyard is landscaped with rocks) Next year will be even more fun when he's older. I'm looking forward to it.

I have a confession. My dog, Brody, is driving me nuts. Absolutely nuts. This dog has an excitement level larger than I can handle. He makes me crazy when I walk him. I've read books, I've watched videos, I've read articles all on dog training. I've yet to find anything to work to keep him under control. And in the process I am going crazy. So we've decided that desperate measures must now be taken. We are going to take Brody to private dog training lessons. Seriously. We've got to figure out how to deal with him or else he will have to find a new home. I'm very optimistic about these lessons.

You know, it's kind of weird. Now that I've had a kid, it seems like he is the only thing I have to talk about. When someone asks how I'm doing, the answer always depends on my child and how he is doing. If he's doing good, then I am too. If he's having a hard time, I am definitely having a hard time. Now I understand why parents talk about their kids so much - because that's usually the most interesting thing to talk about.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009


Life is busy these days. (Seems like it always is) But I do like to keep you guys in the loop with what's going in our lives. So here's an update ;

The baby turned 6 months old on Monday! Amazing, because there were times when I never thought we would make it this far. Yesterday he has his shots, and so today he is feeling a little droopy. He weighed 14 pounds 2 ounces, and is 27 inches long. I have a long and skinny child. Just like me...and my family. He is doing so much better these days. He still has a temper. He is still a little booger. He still fights going to sleep, but now he doesn't scream for hours during nap time. He takes naps consistently every day and only cries for about 10 minutes at the most when I first lay him down. It makes me so happy. He can do all those lovely baby tricks like rolling over, laughing, etc. Now he gets up on his hands and knees and rocks. He almost has the crawling thing figured out. But for now he scoots all over the place. It's so funny. And cute.

I have lost all of my baby weight and then some. So exciting. I totally love being thin again. I'm also no longer tired from having a baby. I finally feel better. Normal. Such a nice feeling. It took a while to get to that point because he was such a bad little napper, every time I started to take a nap, the baby would wake me up. It totally made me nuts. And sleep deprived. I really really really hope our next child doesn't fight sleep as much as he does.

Last week I had the most embarrassing moment of my life. At my dr's appointment I asked my doctor if she was pregnant. She wasn't. SO TERRIBLE. I recommend never doing that. She wasn't very happy with me after that. Not only that, but I also managed to create the world's most awkward checkup. That was really terrible. But in my defense (not that I really have much to defend, because I don't). I heard a rumor that she was pregnant/trying to get pregnant....and when she came in, she was slouching over and looking at him in the stroller and propped her clipboard on her stomach. It just created the illusion of a small baby bump. Anyway, I definitely learned my lesson and will NEVER ask someone that again. Never. So much for a good patient/dr. relationship.

We have settled into our new house. We like it a lot. We love the neighborhood. There are plenty of parks and walking trails that encourage you to exercise. I love it. I still haven't finished unpacking. It bothers me. Oh well.

So those are the basics for now. I take oodles of pictures of the baby regularly, but I recently posted some of my favorites on facebook. Most of you guys have facebook, so you can see them there. :)

Monday, August 3, 2009

Yay for August!

Ok. It's August 3rd and we have all survived. All three of us are still alive, in one piece, and still love each other. Ha ha. July pretty much proved to be the most difficult month of my whole entire life between packing, moving, and dealing with Levi (just to name a few of our struggles). But we made it. Moving was chaotic and so fortunately for us, we have great friends and family that helped us move and unpack and take care of the baby. At one point, I was so exhausted, I felt just as exhausted as I did after I had given birth (minus the swelling). He also reached the point to where he had had enough too. A couple of friends watched him while we were packing and moving. At the end of the week, he had a complete melt down when he woke up at a friend's house. He spent the rest of the day with us and was fine. Ha ha. He made it clear how much he missed being with his mom and dad. And we missed him too!

So now we are in our new house. We like it. We love the neighborhood. There are things we miss about the old house, and a lot that we don't. Although we like it here, there is still a small amount of adjustment. That's ok.

The baby continues to get cuter by the day. He is turning into a rolly-polly and rolls over all the time. I don't like it when he feels that he should roll over when I'm changing his diaper. Speaking of changing diapers, the other day Joel was changing the baby's poopy diaper, and he stuck his hand in his poop like three times. Hysterical - because I was not the one changing him. Ha ha. The baby also has learned to growl, and makes his growling noises all day long. So funny. We have also been seeing a Pediatric Gastrointestinal Specialist to help deal with the baby's feeding issues as well as visiting a feeding clinic. Both have been tremendously helpful and not only is he eating better, but also sleeping better. In fact last night he slept from 10:30 pm to 7:15 this morning!! yay! so exciting. I'm really looking forward to him dropping that late evening feeding so I can start going to bed earlier. And speaking of sleep, I have a little boy who fell asleep on my arm while I've been typing this blog, so I need to go and lay him down for his nap now.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

I really don't have the time to writing this. I have way too much to do right now, but there is so much going on here, that I thought I should update on what's been happening with us lately.

The baby is still quite the handful. There are days when that little boy drives me nuts. (just to be honest). We recently took him into a specialist to do a swallow study, which allows us to see what is causing his reflux, and how exactly it effects him. We learned he has a difficult time swallowing thin liquids, due to his forward tongue thrust. So we've learned how to work with him. He is still incredibly difficult to deal with these days. Feedings can be quite stressful. We have a pediatric GI specialist appointment next week to see what can be done to help him.

Joel's mom had a minor heart attack a couple of weeks ago. It turns out that everything is ok, and she is doing much better.

We found out on July 1st that we have to be out of our house at the end of the month. The owners have decided that they would like to put this house back on the market. I have no idea why you would want to do such a thing when NOBODY is buying houses these days. Quite the stupid move, if you ask me. So we have been scrambling to find another house. We would like to buy, but probably won't be able to quite yet. I'm sad about it, because that means we have to move at least 2 more times before we get into a house. I HATE moving. I found a house yesterday and put in an application. I'm pretty sure we will get it.

On top of all that, I am STILL so tired. So tired. So these next two months will be spent packing, moving, unpacking, and taking care of a fussy baby with reflux. I'm so frustrated. I'm so stressed. Sometimes I feel like it can't possibly get any worse. I know it can, and sometimes it does. Some days I feel like I am on the verge of losing my mind. But I still have it. For now.

Friday, May 29, 2009

My Hands are full.

I haven't written a blog in 20 days! That's probably the longest I've gone without writing a blog. At the moment Levi is sitting on my lap as I write this. He can hold up his head now - he's a little wobbly, but he still does a great job. Every once in a while I have to stop typing to adjust him because he'll slump over too far. It's funny. He also coos and smiles. So cute.

Tomorrow the baby will be 2 and a half months old...or 10 weeks - whichever you would like to call it. I'm not going to lie. I've had my hands full with him and these last two months have been so hard. Levi is a strong willed, fussy child. At his two month check up, the pediatrician wrote on her notes "difficult temperament". I just had to laugh - because it's so true. On top of the fact that he's so strong willed, he's also had his issues. He's struggled with breast feeding for quite a while. I've gone back and forth between the pediatrician and lactation consultant several times. I think that this week we have finally figured out his issue - Levi's stomach cannot handle dairy products. I've been on a strict no dairy diet for several days, and Levi has been doing so much better and so much happier while he eats and afterwards . Such a relief. I'm still not completely sure that dairy is his issue, but I think it is...I'll have a better idea by the end of next week.

Even though we've made a lot of headway on his feeding issues, I'm still not out of the woods yet. Levi is a TERRIBLE napper. Like the worst EVER! I spend about 2/3 of my day fighting with him to get him to take a nap! I've read and read and read about causes of napping problems, but the biggest issue is that he just doesn't want to take a nap - no matter what I try. Some methods work for a while, but in the end, they stop being effective. Sometimes, depending on his mood, when I try to sooth him by stroking his forehead, he'll turn away, and move his head back and forth, so I can't calm him down. (How in the world can a child so young have such a strong opinion??) It's really funny, but not when he's doing it. I've tried every technique in the book. Some of them work on him sometimes, but nothing really works consistently. Yesterday I tried putting one of his hats down over his eyes so he couldn't look around, but he was able to move his head back and forth until he could see again. Little stinker. The thing that works the best is putting him in the swing and covering the whole swing with a blanket...but I can't let him sleep in there all the time. What am I going to do when he gets too big for the swing?? So I have reached the point to where I have decided to stop fighting him on this issue. The pediatrician said to not worry about it too much because he gets enough sleep at night. (He does take naps during the day, but they are short - 45 to 60 minutes).

One more confession - secretly I feel jealous of first-time moms who have calm, easy-going, laid back babies and I hope that their next child will be the complete opposite! Ha ha. That's so mean. But it's true. (I apologize in advance to all who fit in this category if I have offended you.)

One month old. He's really not as red as he looks in the picture.

Sitting in his jumperoo that he is waaaay to little for. The thing swallows him.

Crossing his eyes is his best trick. Ninja skills.

Saturday, May 9, 2009

I hate to admit this...

but this baby has been such a little toot. That's right. Over the last week or two Levi has decided to become an insomniac. Nap time has become the most miserable part of the day for me. For the most part he still sleeps well during the night time (thank God, I couldn't handle this at night as well), but his nap times during the day have been a nightmare. He absolutely refuses to sleep! I've tried everything - swaddling, not swaddling, rocking, singing, patting, rubbing, white noise, music, etc, etc, etc. Nothing has worked. I've checked my milk supply (which is fine), it's not gas, it's not that I need to extend his wake time either (he gets grumpy after an hour of being awake). I'm at the point to where I am letting him cry it out, because I feel like I am out of other options. He has reached a new level of screaming in the process - which is miserable to listen to. AND if that's not bad enough, today he has screamed through most of the 3 naps that he was supposed to take. At some point this kid has got to wear out, but it hasn't happened yet. Suggestions and advice are welcome!!!!!

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

The Birth Story

So...the birth story. Here it is...for those of you who would like to know. (I won't be offended by those who choose to not read this!)

On Friday (March 20th) I had a OB appointment and learned that not only had I already dilated to a 3, but that the baby could come at any time. However, despite that information, I really didn't believe that it could possibly be any day - let alone the following day...

Later that day I was working as a judge in a Fine Arts Festival for teenagers. The judging went late into the evening, and I felt strange. I kept feeling a little "pushy" - and kept making trips to the bathroom about every half and hour or so. I didn't really think anything of it, because I had resigned to the fact that weird things happen to you during pregnancy. Ha ha. I've gotten used to it.

I wasn't able to get home and go to bed until around 11:30 PM later that night - pretty late for a pregnant lady. That night (morning really) I woke up around 3 AM because I could no longer sleep. I kept having cramping feelings in my lower abdomen. At that point I realized that labor may actually be a possibility...and then realized that I didn't have an overnight bag packed yet. (What can I say? I'm a procrastinator.) So I got up and walked around the house, setting aside items I thought I would need to pack in my bag while Joel slept. I spent the rest of that early morning trying to get everything in order so that we could go to the hospital (We even had to put the car seat in the car too...seriously, we had nothing ready yet). With every moment, the possibility of having a baby become more and more of a reality.

Sometime during those early hours my water broke without any warning and let me tell you - wow, those contractions started coming fast and hard. I hardly had any time to adjust to the quick progression. They definitely didn't increase gradually like the contraction that my friends had during labor. We ended up going to the hospital as soon as we had gotten our stuff together (overnight bag, car seat, showered, dog fed, etc - we had a lot of details to get into place)(probably around 9 AM).

After we had gotten to hospital, checked in, and confirmed that I was actually in labor (duh - that was quite apparent to me), they moved us into a delivery room. I spent the next several hours working through the contractions without any medication. I got several compliments from the nurses, telling me how good I was doing working through the contractions. But I was running on about 3 hours of sleep since I had spent most of the night awake with contractions and each contraction came on so fast and hard, I hardly had time in between the contractions to relax and prepare for the next one. Fatigue was quickly setting in, and with every contraction my energy level and ability to mentally work through the pain began to dwindle. On top of that, every time I changed into a different labor position, it brought on a new contraction - and it was always stronger than before. And what made things even more frustrating for me was the fact that I was intensely thirsty this whole entire time. I desperately wanted a drink of water, but all I was allowed to get was ice chips. (boo)I was wearing out quickly. Eventually I consented to a mild pain medication (I don't remember what it was) but it did very little to ease the experience. With every contraction, the idea of an epidural sounded better and better. Finally I reached the point to where I could no longer work through the contractions. I was physically and mentally exhausted. A nurse came in to check my progress. I had dilated to a 6. She said at this rate, I was dilating about a centimeter and hour - so that meant I had to deal with 4 more hours of this before I was ready to push. That did it for me. There was no way I could possibly handle four more hours of this AND have enough energy left to push this baby out. I was worried. I caved - and I did it. After about 10 hours of unmedicated labor (well - except for the useless pain medication I got), I asked for an epidural! I didn't want to do it, but I was at the point to where I felt that I didn't have another option. I desperately wanted to do a natural delivery, but was overwhelmed by fatigue.

Joel got sent out of the room. The anesthesiologist came in with the nurse, I signed consent forms, and they told me I was then required to stay in my bed (that was not a problem. I didn't want to move. Every time I moved, it brought on another contraction. No thank you). The hardest part of the epidural was holding still through a contraction that spiked into the triple digits while the anesthesiologist was sticking a needle into my spine. Oh the pain! My nurse was nice enough to allow me to squeeze her arms through the contraction. She was so nice. Once the medication had worked through my body, I felt much better. Let me tell you - I REALLY didn't want to get an epidural, but that was THE BEST thing I could have done for myself. I really don't regret it. At that point, I was finally able to relax and ended up sleeping until it was time to push. I needed it. It felt good.

Sometime after around 7:30 PM, the nurse informed me that I was ready to push. So the doctor and nurse came in, and the doctor said, "Are you ready?" My response was, "Uhhh, I guess so." She gave me a concerned look and asked, "What's wrong?" I said, "Well...that's a really big thing to push through a really small opening!!!" They laughed. I wasn't trying to be funny. Just honest.

I began pushing as the nurse coached me along. The time moved quickly. I didn't even realize how much time passed as I was pushing. Every once in a while I would stop and ask Joel how much of the baby was showing. Eventually when he crowned (meaning the biggest part of the baby's head was coming out) the doctor came in to catch the him as he came out. I asked Joel to see how much of the baby he could see. The doctor asked me if I wanted a mirror. "NO!" I said in horror. (Gross! I don't want to see what was happening. That would be horrifying. No visuals, thank you very much). I will never ever forget the feeling of discomfort as Levi was crowning. Never in my life have I felt such discomfort from an extreme amount of pressure in my lower extremities. My thighs, lower back, and lower abdomen almost felt like they were on fire and being pressed to their maximum capacity...and that was with the epidural (I did allow a lot of the epidural to wear off while pushed, and increased the levels conservatively). It was not fun. Finally after about 2 and a half hours of pushing, Levi came out at 10:03 PM.

They immediately put him on my stomach as the cleaned him up. Everyone in the room paused as they waited for him to take a deep breath and let out a scream. When he did, everyone let out a sigh of relief and continued what they were doing. I held him for the first time. I couldn't believe I was finally holding the baby that I had carried inside of me for almost 9 months. I didn't hold him for too long. I started to shake uncontrollably. I couldn't hold him anymore because I was too unsteady. I was shivering, and yet I was told that my body felt hot. No matter how hard I tried to control the shaking, I couldn't stop. I was freezing cold too. I begged to be covered up. It took a long time for me to warm up - I ended up running a fever for a while after that, it lasted for a couple of hours, but eventually went away.

For the next couple of hours, Joel gave me glass after glass of water and fed me jello. (It seemed like a good idea at the time). Let me tell you, I was so stinkin' thirsty by that time, I could hardly stand it - especially since I had been thirsty since about noon earlier that day. I remember being so exhausted afterward. The nurse and doctor were around me talking, and I would fade in and out of coherency. It was the weirdest thing. All I wanted to do was sleep but they kept talking to me. I had to think really hard to answer their questions. Labor and delivery was truly exhausting and the most physically demanding experience I've ever had. Completely and totally surreal. It wasn't fun, but totally worth it because now I have this amazing baby, who I am in LOVE with, and it gets better and better every day. Sometimes I look at him in amazement and just think - I can't believe that I pushed you out of me! How in the world did I do that?

So that's my story. I was in labor about 17 hours and pushed for about 2 and half (I sympathize with women who have been in labor longer than that). He was born on March 21st at 10:03 PM and weighed 7 pounds, 9 ounces and was 20.5 inches long - and was 3 weeks early. I'm glad he came out when he did. 7 pounds and 9 ounces felt gigantic coming out - I can only imagine what a 9 pound baby would have felt like! By the way - today was his due date!

Here I Am!

I'm still alive. I think about you guys often. I miss blogging. I have so much to tell you guys and so little time to sit down and write it. I've started to write the blog about the birthing experience about 3 times but never finish - usually because I start writing it in the evening and get too tired to finish it. Evenings are exhausting for me. So here's a couple of thoughts about what has been going on. (And I promise to write about the birth soon)

-The baby is now a little over two weeks old. This Friday would have been his due date. I'm glad he came early - especially since he was the size of a normal newborn despite his early arrival.

-The baby gets cuter by the day and he looks less and less like a child fresh out of the womb. I like him a lot. I think I'll keep him. We've also discovered that he has a firecracker of a personality. His temper amazes me. I've never seen a child so young with such a fierce temper.

-Labor and delivery were terrible. Yes they were. Serious pain. The most uncomfortable feeling I've ever had in my life was when Levi's head was crowning. All I could think about was how much I wanted to get him out of me. I hope I never feel anything worse than that. If people only knew how terrible labor and delivery could be, there would be no need for birth control - especially those unplanned teenage pregnancies. The whole experience of labor and delivery was completely surreal. I still can't believe I pushed that kid out of me. So weird.

- I was horrified to find out that after delivery your whole entire body swells up and gets seriously least my body did. I don't know about everyone else. I didn't even recognize myself when I looked in the mirror. That was freaky.

-I have 10 - 15 pound of baby weight left to lose, but I'm pretty sure that my hips have become permanently wider. Oh well. I don't care that much.

-I was supposed to be judging a Fine Arts Festival for teenagers when Levi was born. I find it hysterical that I went into labor on that particular weekend. What are the odds? I was so sure he wouldn't come that weekend, but he did. Ha ha.

-I am so tired these days. I really should be taking a nap.

-I gave my son a pacifier, even though I didn't want to. He has a habit of sucking on his hands and sometimes even his thumb when he's upset. I would much rather deal with a pacifier than a convince him to not suck his thumb anymore when he's older. You can always throw away a pacifier.

-Over the years I've changed literally hundreds of diapers, but Levi is the hardest to change. He squirms and flails like crazy every time I get near his diaper. He really hates his diaper being changed.

-Levi was born on my mom's birthday. I was super excited to realize this. And the numbers of his birthday go in a descending sequence 3-21-09. It's fun. Joel pointed this out.

-And one last thing - my sister had her baby four days after I did. both her baby and mine both weighed 7 pounds 9 ounces. Our baby was a tad bit longer than his cousin.

That's all for now. Hooray for not being pregnant anymore!!!

Tuesday, March 17, 2009


My level of agitation is so high right now. I feel like my whole entire body is so swollen right now - my feet, my ankles, my hands, my fingers, my face, even my nasal passages are swollen (i can tell because it feels like I have a stuffy nose right now). I'm so uncomfortable and aggrivated right now. I always get a little swollen over the weekends, because they are so busy for me, and I don't have as much time to rest, but once the weekend is over, I can get the swelling to go down. But the amount of swelling I'm currently dealing with is not normal for me. I've been on the phone with the doctor. I have orders to stay away from processed foods for a day or two (not that big of a deal for me, because I rarely eat them anyway). I also have to call the doctor again today if this swelling doesn't lessen by today. I haven't seen much progress over the last 24 hours, so I have a feeling I will be calling their office again later today. Arg! I am so uncomfortable! I really really really hate being pregnant today.

Monday, March 2, 2009

Not So Bad.

So the Prepared Childbirth Class that Joel and I took this weekend was not nearly as bad as I thought it was going to be. When I first got pregnant, I was hesitant to learn all the horrible details that were involved with pregnancy and childbirth. So I made it a point to learn the information as I needed to know it, or was ready to handle it. I was seriously nervous about going to the class this past weekend, because I was afraid to learn everything else that I hadn't learned about childbirth. But apparently I knew more than I thought I did, because none of the information traumatized me or caught me off guard (like some of the other couples in my class - you should have seen how large their eyes got to learn some of the stuff. It was hysterical. those poor people). I think the worst thing I learned was about C-sections. But the video they showed was just computer animation, not like a Discovery Channel real-life version. Overall, I'm glad we took the class, and now I have about a month to prepare myself mentally for what is to come...and to pray for God to give me the courage to endure childbirth. Yes, I am nervous about birth!

Two random pieces of information to share with you guys:
1) my belly is getting very large (I assume you guys all know that) but it's starting to resemble a basketball. It's really starting to look like I shoved a basketball inside my shirt. I find it amusing and frightening at the same time (geez, how much large am I going to get? I don't think I want to know the answer).
2) I have been craving oranges and orange juice like crazy these days. I guess my body needs more vitamin C? I have to make sure that I regulate how much I consume. Too many oranges create unpleasant results in your digestive system!

Friday, February 20, 2009

Baby is big.

I'm currently 33 weeks pregnant. Yesterday I had a sonogram and then a doctor's appointment afterward. During the sonogram we found out that this baby is a big baby. When the technician measured his belly, she said, "Wow! That's a BIG belly!" Then she started measuring other parts like his head, and his femur. After she was finished measuring everything, she told me that his length was several weeks ahead of schedule, and that he was incredibly tall for his age (I wish I could remember how long he was, but I forgot). Then she gave me his estimated weight - over 5 pounds. At this point, I believe they are supposed to be right around 4 pounds. AND THEN she told me that he is currently in the 70th percentile! WHOA! What the heck?? Apparently I have a large baby inside of me. After that I had my appointment with my OB. She said that if he makes it all the way to 40 weeks he should be in the 8 pound range. (Ahhhh!!) But then she also told me to cut down on my Carb intake, because carbs make your baby grow faster. That makes me so sad! I really love carbs - and I eat them frequently. So I will have to lower my intake of pasta and bread and muffins now. Did I mention how I love carbs? I love carbs. I really do. But if I don't lower them, this baby could get too big and then wouldn't be able to fit between my hips for delivery...and then I would have to have a C-Section. I really don't want that. So I've decided that consuming carbs is NOT worth having a C-section. Not at all! So from now until delivery, my carb intake will be much lower.

And on the same note about having a gigantic baby inside of me, I must confess that I am officially nervous. I am nervous about labor and delivery. Yes, I am. Here are the two things that make me nervous - 1) I haven't decided completely, but I am leaning toward a natural delivery. No pain medication. My family thinks I'm crazy. And perhaps I am. I've been told by several people who've gone the natural way that the recovery is so much easier. But still that is a lot of pain. I know. I know I could do it, but the real question is - once I'm in labor, will I want to or be willing to do it??? 2) Since I have such a gigantic kid inside of me, the issue now is "Will he be small enough to fit through my hips?" Oh, this makes me so nervous! At first I was going to blame Joel for the size of our child, you know, since my husband is so big. But then I started to think about it, and remembered how big people tend to run on both sides of my family, despite my average height. So it's a lot more likely that both mine and Joel's genes together have created one big tall baby. I am nervous. (Dear God, please do not let me have a C-section! Amen)

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Life Lessons & other things I have learned from pregnancy

* listen to advice. think about it, and then decide for yourself whether or not it is something to act on.
* on that same thought - when you are told something, consider the source in which it is coming from. just because someone says things happen a certain way, doesn't mean they do. i had someone tell me that you can't tie your shoes when you are pregnant. i am 7.5 weeks away from my due date and can still touch my toes - and yes, i can still tie my shoes too.
* no matter how much you try, no matter how air-tight your argument is or how valid your point may be, some people cannot be reasoned with.
* chose your battles wisely. some issues are worth addressing, while others are not.
* the world is full of people who are paid not to think - like those who work for insurance companies and business offices. far too often, just because they say the answer is "no" doesn't mean that it really is. it just means that they don't know. don't be afraid to challenge them on this. it's your money, not theirs.
* ignore people who have nothing nice to say, and seem to be determined to deflate your hopes.
* if you are pregnant during the flu season, get a flu shot. that was one of the smartest things i've done during pregnancy, and it saved me from getting sick at least twice (excluding the last two weeks that i was sick - which was one of the most miserable experiences of my pregnancy, specifically because there was very little medication that i was permitted to take)
* true friends are willing to work through a conflict, or at least overlook a conflict that may come up in the friendship. those who cut you off, are not worth keeping.
* if you have plans to become pregnant in the near future, and have maternity coverage with your insurance, make it a point to know your coverage backwards and forwards. make sure that you know exactly what it covers. and then explore other options for coverage outside of your insurance. believe it or not we would have been better off NOT having maternity coverage with our insurance because there are so many other programs available that will cover all or most of your maternity costs if you do not have maternity coverage with your insurance. over the last couple of years, we put far more money into our insurance coverage for maternity than they are willing to cover. So after the baby is born, we will probably drop our maternity coverage and go a different route next time.

You are more than welcome to add your own lessons learned through pregnancy if you would like.

As far as the pregnancy update goes, I've experienced a couple of things lately - I think I have lost my mind. Some days are good, while others are just plain terrible. I spent Thursday through Saturday in a daze. I cannot even begin to elaborate the extent of my mental fogginess. It was terrible. I had the hardest time keeping track of what I was doing, and remembering what I needed to do. On Friday I went grocery shopping and spent half of my time circling the store and retracing my steps, because I would repeatedly forget to pick up and item from that part of the store. So frustrating. I've also increased ability to randomly drop things (like my cell phone - i really hope my cell phone makes it to the end of this pregnancy), or spill things. It seems that I am constantly forgetting to hold up my cup when it has liquid inside - like water...or orange juice. It's really bad. It seems that my baby has been sucking up my brain juice.

Speaking of the baby, it seems that he is becoming more and more particular these days, specifically when it comes to the position that I sit, recline, or lay. If I slightly off-centered, he will kick and squirm until I reposition myself. He also doesn't enjoy when I wear pants with the panels that cover most of your belly. He kicks at the elastic all day long until I change my pants at the end of the day. And frequently when I am trying to sleep, he will wiggle and squirm until I am no longer able to sleep and forced to get up. (My child is waking me up and he hasn't even come out yet!) I have a feeling that this baby is going to be a highly opinionated child.

And I have recently realized that I've been experiencing Braxton Hicks contractions (pre-labor contractions that start after about 20 weeks that prepare your body for birth). But the funny thing is that I didn't realize what they were. Last week late at night, I kept having a pinching feeling in the lower part of my belly that seemed to come every couple of minutes. I was a little confused about this whole thing, but because I was so tired, I went to bed. I had a couple more of those pinching feelings, but they stopped after I layed down. The next morning I called the doctor to ask about those pinching feelings. After a series of questions, she was able to determine that they were in fact, Braxton Hicks contractions. I was like "OH! Man that explains a LOT!" Apparently I've had them for at least a couple of weeks, but didn't realize it. I thought when you had Braxton Hicks, that you would feel your whole torso contract - not nessicarily the case, so I learned. I laughed for a while after that. Sometimes I just amuse myself.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009


As of tomorrow, I will officially be 7 months pregnant. Two more months left! Last night I realized that my baby will be full term (38 weeks) in only 6 he could possibly come as soon as six weeks from now. The reality is growing and sinking in more and more by the day. But I'm still not scared. At least I don't think I am. I feel ready for him - as ready as I can be without the parenting experience. Someone told me recently that I had no clue what I was getting myself into, no matter how much preparation I've made (classes, books, babysitting, etc) that I was in for a huge surprise. Basically they were trying to tell me that I had no idea what I was getting myself into. That wasn't very nice of them, and by the way they spoke to me, it was quite obvious they were deliberately trying to make me feel foolish and inferior to them. But you know what?
1.)- that person is not a nice person, and obviously has some personal issues to deal with.
2.) - they haven't kept in contact with me over the past ten or so years, and therefore really don't know me, my experiences, and obviously misinterpreted what I was really saying.
3.) - they were 23 when they had their first child. I'm 28. (btw, I'm totally not putting down those who've had their children earlier in life than myself) There is quite a difference - a lot changes between those years. And I know for a fact that I have had way more life experiences than they had before they had their first child. I am not the same as this person, and they seem to think that I am in the same position that they were when they had their first child.

Realistically I understand that I cannot be completely 100% prepared for this - of course not! But I do have the understanding that there is a lot of sacrifice, attention, stress, etc that goes with raising a child. I understand that my life will never be the same. I understand that everything will change. I understand that there will be problems and complications to deal with. I understand that I will lose a lot of sleep taking care of my child (but, wow, after being up all night and unable to get more than an hour of sleep last week when I was sick, I totally feel like I can handle all the late nights with my baby!). That's what I mean when I say that I am ready. I am ready for this change. No, I don't know exactly what will happen. But I'm ready to embrace it. I am as ready as I can be without the parenting experience. And that's what I mean when I say that I am ready.

On a slightly different note - Joel and I have started to get Levi's room ready. The theme we chose is monkeys with a green and brown color scheme - incredibly cute. You can see our theme here at Babies 'R Us. The room is currently a disaster area, because we have to find new places for several items we used to keep in the spare/guest bedroom that is now becoming Levi's room. At this point, we could easily fill a four bedroom house instead of the the three bedroom that we have now!

At the beginning of this blog I mentioned the fact that I will be full term in six weeks. I intended to elaborate on that thought a bit more, but got side tracked with the whole subject of being personally attacked by that one not-so-nice individual. So back to that thought. The possibility of Levi coming in six weeks as opposed to 2 months, really caught me a little off guard. I don't know's only a two week difference, but I guess it's different way to think of these things. But that's ok. These past 7 months have been one giant waiting game for me. Sometimes (well, most of the time) I can hardly stand the anticipation, and want to fast forward to the end of pregnancy. But I'm still not nervous. At least I don't think...but I have started to have weird pregnancy & delivery dreams - mostly that he comes too early (before 38 weeks) and I want to put him back inside of me and continue to grow him! Weird. So if having those kind of wierd dreams is some sort of way saying that I have subcontious fears, then maybe I am nervous and don't even realize it. Perhaps I am in denial. Or maybe I'm just crazy!

And btw, does anyone have any creative, economical suggestions to celebrate Valentine's Day? I'm trying to figure out a way to celebrate Valentine's Day this year without spending more than about...oh...I don't know...ten dollars!! Ha ha.

Friday, February 6, 2009

sleepless - once again.

It is currently 1:15 a.m. After several hours of laying in bed without any hope of sleeping, I have decided to get up. I am sick. A sick person came over to my house at the end of last week and was kind of enough to share their cold with me. Thanks for being so considerate as to getting the pregnant lady sick. Thanks a lot. I would really like to call her right now and give her a piece of my mind. Apparently there is not a lot of medication that you can take while you are pregnant. How convenient. My sinuses are so congested that I can do nothing but sit up in order to breathe. Unfortunately I cannot sleep sitting up, unlike some people (my husband). So I took one plain Sudafed, the only decongestant you can take during pregnancy. It's so ironic that it's non-drowsy. Yes I feel very non-drowsy from the Sudafed, yet drowsy at the same time. I don't know what to do. I sympathize for insomniacs. Seriously. This is the second night in a row that sleep has alluded me. Last night, no matter what I tried, I felt like I was suffocating when I tried reclining or laying down to sleep due to my sinus congestion. So tonight, I tried my other option - non-drowsy medication. Now I can't sleep because the Sudafed is keeping me awake. Man, I am in bad shape here. This weekend my mom is giving my sister (who is also pregnant) and I double baby shower I am now convinced that I am going look as bad as I feel for the shower. This will be my second consecutive night in a row without sleep. I wonder how many nights in a row I can go without any sleep? I may soon find out. Someone mentioned to me earlier that that's how motherhood will be. Arg! Do you think it's very appropriate to tell me something like this right now? Did you really think that would help me feel better? Thanks for the encouragement. People can be so insensitive sometimes.

Thursday, January 29, 2009


I've been meaning to write a blog for a while. I've started to write a blog a couple of times, but never end up finishing them, and I'm never motivated to even save them to finish later. The real issue that keeps me from writing is pregnancy. Pregnancy is actually going very well right now, but my body has been very sore - mainly my upper back, which in turn keeps me from sitting at the computer in the office for extended periods of time. I've found that our office chairs just don't quite offer the upper back support that I need these days. But today Joel is working from home! (yay! I love it when this happens) and that means his laptop is here too! So I am writing this blog today from our couch - much more comfortable than the office chairs.

Here's what we've been up to:

So today I am 30 weeks pregnant! That means only ten more weeks of this! I am soooo excited. I also think that Levi is almost in the head down position at this point. His movements and kicks are in different places now (more on the top and bottom of my belly rather than the left and right sides).

I'm not as irritable as I have been in the past reguarding pregnancy. I still get those comments from people about how I big I am. Yes, they still aggrivate me, but not as much. And occasionally I still want to slap those who speak those comments to me. (You know, I already feel fat, but thanks for the confirmation) These days it is a lot easier to disregard those comments, probably because my hormones have subsided more.

At my last appointment, my doctor said that my weight gain is looking much better than the previous appointment. That made me very happy. All that hard work has paid off. I seriously don't know how some women (like my sister) manage to only gain the minimum amount of weight during pregnancy with such little effort. I have to work very hard at not gaining too much weight. It's a huge challenge. It's even more difficult this week, because it's too cold for me to go walking outside (35 degrees is too cold for a pregnant woman to exercise in, especially when she can't move fast enough to warm up). I guess I will settle for doing yoga today.

My doctor has requested that I count how many times he moves during a certain time every day (Kick Counts) and then write them down. From what I've read, the average baby moves 8 times every 10-20 minutes during their daily "active time". Levi usually moves at least 8 times in about 5 minutes. I have a feeling that this little boy is not going to be very laid back. And I anticipate that he will be a very active child. We'll see.

Last weekend there was an explosion near our house! Seriously. I have no idea what it was, but on Saturday evening Joel and I were on the couch when we heard this massive boom. It was so loud that not only did it shake our house, but also the dishes inside the kitchen cabinet. We never found out what it was. There was no report on the news, nothing on the internet, and it seems we may never find out what exactly shook our house, but I'm dying of curiosity....still.

During the fall we realized that our car needed some seriously expensive work done on the brakes, among other things. We couldn't afford to repair everything at once, so we got the most necessary work done in order for our car to remain drivable (and safe). The funny thing was that when Joel took the car to the mechanic's shop, the mechanic showed Joel exactly what was wrong, and how to fix it (assuming that Joel really had no clue). Well Joel in fact does know how to work on cars, so after we got the most crucial damage fixed on our car, Joel and I decided skip the mechanic shop, and have him fix the rest himself. So over the past couple of months, we've set aside money to fix one problem at a time. (finding the time to work on the car has also been another issue). Last weekend, we finally got one of the last problems fixed on the car. Now all we need to do is get the car aligned. But then guess what happened? Our gas gauge broke! How nice! Ahhh!! Just when we could finally see the end in sight, something else goes wrong! Grrr. That's ok. Joel knows how to fix that too - the big issue will be finding the time to work on it.

Right before Thanksgiving, I did pictures for a three generation family. It was lots of fun. And yes, I am finally getting around to putting them up. Here are a couple of my favorites. The rest you can find on Facebook.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Dear Hips -

Please do not get any larger. I liked you guys the way you were before Levi entered the picture. I have always admired you. I am nervous to see what you will be like after this experience. Please, do not feel the need to expand anymore. This would make me very happy.


Thursday, January 15, 2009

2009 Goals

I don't necessarily believe in making New Year's Resolutions. It's not that I'm opposed to them. I completely support working toward improving yourself. I guess what I don't completely believe in is waiting until the New Year to start something that you should be doing now - like exercising more often, changing your eating habits, etc, etc. Why put off obtaining a goal until the new year when you are motivated to do it now, or at least see that you need to change? I've found that when I put off reaching a goal I know I need to reach, the more difficult it becomes to obtain it - mostly because I've gotten myself into the habit of NOT working towards it. I'm more the type of person that works towards a new goal immediately when I realize I need to change something instead of waiting until the new year. That's really why I don't believe in the resolutions.

BUT with all of that said, I have to admit, that today as I was walking, I realized that I too have set goals for myself to accomplish this year. I guess I've been mentally setting goals for myself over the past couple of weeks? Anyway, I thought I would share them with you guys. And plus whenever you voice them, it makes you that much more accountable toward reaching them. So here they are.

  • To have my dog leash-trained by the time Levi is born. And when I say leash trained, I mean not pulling me, walking beside me without stopping to smell every tree and bush along the path. Here's why - I plan on doing a lot of walking after Levi is born, and I want my dog to be well trained enough walk calmly beside the baby jogger. We've been working on this for a while, and we are making significant headway towards this goal. Brody gets better and better on a leash every day.
  • To lose all the baby weight I've had to gain through this pregnancy in a healthy way. (I'm sure you guys all assumed this...especially considering all the blogs I've written obsessing about my weight) No crash diets or excessive exercise. And hopefully I will be able to shed all those pounds but I've also read that after pregnancy sometimes you tend to permanently gain a couple of pounds. And yes I do plan to nurse Levi, which will also help with weight loss.
  • To increase our financial income while staying home with Levi. Joel and I are currently in the process of developing website businesses and selling them online. Joel has taught me the basics of creating the beginning stages of a website, and then he adds the graphics and other stuff. I'm also in the process of learning HTML. We are both hoping to have this process down to a steady routine by the time Levi comes, which in turn would be a steady second income without me having to get a work outside the home.
  • To be a good mom. I have confidence that I can do this. I want to be a mom who is flexible, who doesn't stress out about minor injuries on my child, and not too overly protective. I also want to be one who has a "plan" to work towards putting my child on a schedule.
  • To make significant headway on the photography course (through New York Institute of Photography) that I am working through, and hopefully to finish it by the end of the year...but I don't know how possible that may be considering the significant change life approaching in less than three months.
  • To find the balance between my role as a mom and wife, my involvement in our church, and my time spent as a photographer and creating websites with my husband. I have a feeling this may be tricky.
So there you go. And now you know what I will be focusing on this year. And by the way today I am 28 weeks pregnant, officially in my THIRD and FINAL trimester, and I can still touch my toes and do yoga stretches standing on one leg. I am pleased. Now if only I could keep my eating habits as good as my exercising habits....

Monday, January 5, 2009

the baby update.

I'm currently 26 weeks pregnant. I will officially be in my third trimester at 28 weeks, which is about a week and a half away. My due date is getting closer and closer. I have also started to count down how many weeks I have left rather than counting up how many weeks I am pregnant.

I had a checkup on New Year's Eve. The doctor said my baby has a good, strong, healthy heartbeat. That made me happy, especially because of my asthma.

We are currently in the process of figuring out how the heck we will be paying for our baby's birth. We definitely have a plan to pay off his birth, however it will be a slow, drawn out process, where payments are made on a monthly basis. I don't think my doctor's office likes our plan. So we are in the process of exploring other payment options. We'll see what happens. Sometimes the issue stresses me out, but hardly ever. My baby is coming whether or not they want him to. Ha ha. They'll get their money - it just may not be the way that they prefer.

The more time progresses, the more I get asked this question, "So how are you feeling about the baby coming?" And this is my answer - I am incredibly excited, and my excitement grows more and more by the day. I'm looking forward to meeting this baby that I've been carrying inside of me for 6 months. I'm dying to know what he looks like. Joel and I don't have everything quite in place yet - like we don't have all the furniture, clothing, etc - but that will come together as time progresses. We have a basic idea of how we plan to raise him (scheduling, feeding, sleeping, etc) but are still spending time informing ourselves so we have more details in place. But emotionally, we definitely feel ready for him. The idea of raising our children does not scare us. We aren't nervous about Levi's arrival. We've known each other for 6 years now, and have been married for four of those years. We feel confident in our relationship and our team working skills and believe that we are ready for this next step in our much as you can be ready without the actual experience that prepares you. We both definitely feel ready for him. I do have a little anxiety, but it's only about labor and delivery, and the physical recovery process postpardum.

We've also signed up for a birthing class next month. I'm looking forward to figuring out what kind of labor and delivery options to choose, but I'm dread learning about the gross parts - like the delivery. Ahh! I have to say, that ignorance is bliss! When it comes to pregnancy, I enjoy NOT knowing all the horrible details that come with pregnancy. It's less to worry about. Speaking of which, I recently came across some women who seem to be very concerned about me in regards to the fact that I have not decided the details of my labor and delivery and my laid back attitude towards informing myself. They amused me. I promise I will make a decision with enough time before labor, just not yet. I really am enjoying my ignorance for the moment. And it's one less thing to worry about.

I could be wrong about this, but I really don't think that postpardum depression will be an issue for me. Why? I think I will be a much happier person once my baby is living outside of me rather than inside. Just a thought.

Joel took some belly shots of my last night. I might put them up. I may not. I don't like them. My face looks fat. That seems to be a problem these days. I don't like having a fat face...ok well...I really just don't like being fat. I may share them. Maybe not.