Sunday, April 20, 2014

Marriage Monday: Question Game

It's hard to know what to talk about when it comes to the topic of marriage... sometimes learning about marriages in the modern world can be sort-of depressing.  Sometimes exactly what you need to hear, but doesn't always make you feel warm and cheery on the inside or necessarily closer to your partner than you felt before.  Anyways, if you ask me, it's all important to talk about.  Thanks to an entry on the Gottman Blog that I stumbled across, today's Marriage Monday post will be a potentially exciting one!

One of the most fun ways to interact with your spouse is learning more about each other, especially asking questions that might not come up in everyday conversation without making a point to talk about it.

So, today, I want you to play a game with your spouse.  And don't worry - the instructions are easy.

Step one
: Both of you will need something to write with and something to write on.  Together, randomly decide on 10 numbers between 1-30.  Then, write down those numbers in a column on the left side of your paper.

Step two: Below is a list of numbers and corresponding questions.  Match the numbers you two agreed on with the questions below, and take turns asking your spouse the questions.

If your spouse gets it right - you can award them the number of points indicated for that question, and you receive one point.  If your spouse is wrong, neither of you receive points.  The same rules apply when you answer.  The winner at the end of your 10 questions is whomever has the higher number of points!  And remember... great conversations and connections lead to great sex!  (And I don't know a single couple who couldn't use more of any of those things!!!)

*   *   *   *   *

1. Name two of my closest friends. (2)

2. What was I wearing when we first met? (2)

3. Where was I born? (1)

4. When is my birthday? (1)

5. Who is my favorite relative? (2)

6. What is my fondest unrealized dream? (4)

7. What if my favorite time of day for lovemaking? (3)

8. What was one of my best childhood experiences? (2)

9. What do I like most to do with my time off? (2)

10. What is my favorite movie? (2)

11. What do I fear most? (4)

12. Which side of the bed do I prefer? (2)

13. What medical problems do I worry about most? (2)

14. What is my favorite romantic restaurant? (2)

15. Name one of my favorite novels. (2)

16. Name two of the people I admire most. (4)

17. What is my favorite sex position? (3)

18. What spot on my body is most sensitive? (4)

19. What was my most embarrassing moment? (3)

20. What is my favorite outfit to wear when I want to look sexy? (3)

21. Do I prefer flowers or candy? (2)

22. What is my favorite holiday? (2)

23. What physical quality am I most attracted to in the opposite sex? (3)

24. When was the first time I had sex? (2)

25. How many kids do I want to have? (3)

26. What is the date of our anniversary? (1)

27. What did I think about you when we first met? (4)

28. When did we have our first kiss? (1)

29. What is my favorite getaway place? (3)

30. What is my favorite way to spend an evening? (3)

*   *   *   *   *

Did you guys end up with some good questions for each other?  Did anything you learned by playing this game end up surprising you?  What was your favorite part of this exercise?  And the competitive person in me has to ask... who won?

Friday, April 18, 2014

28 Week Pregnancy Reflection {baby #2}

How far along?:  I am currently 28 weeks along in my second pregnancy.  This means somewhere around 12 weeks to go!  According to just about every stranger I encounter - "JULY?!?  There is NO WAY you'll make it to July!"  As you could imagine, hearing this is not comforting at all.

I am feeling:  Really great as long as I'm not trying to get from sitting on the ground to standing up quickly.  I was feeling kinda crampy (for lack of a better term) last night but it went away as soon as I laid down - thank goodness.
Size of baby:  Roughly the size of a head of cauliflower - around 2.5 pounds & 16 inches!
Weekly growth milestone:  Apparently, babies start hiccuping around this time.  (Uhh oh!)  Babies at this stage of development start having REM in their sleep cycle - which means she could be dreaming already.  Also, Molly should start settling into the proper position for birth.
Movement:  I put a flashlight up to my belly the other day and Molly started to REALLY kick me.  Her movements are now pretty visible on the outside, though she doesn't do a whole lot of moving.
What I miss most:  Being able to breathe more normally.  I also miss it being just the three of us - the anxiety of what's to come has been getting to me lately.  Not to mention, keeping up with Presley at this stage is still not a problem - but it is more tiresome!
Cravings:  Cucumbers & ranch. Strawberries. Peaches. Bananas. Things topped with chili and cheese sound sooo good (fries, hotdogs, baked potatoes... etc).
Best moment of the week:  It was awesome having a date night - thanks to my husband for arranging it & taking me out, my mother-in-law for coming to hang out with Presley, & Presley for being such an awesome kid!  I had a lot of fun going to Lowe's the next day all together, too.  I'm sure if you asked my husband, the best part of the week for him was picking out his new mower!

What I'm excited about:  Weirdly enough, I'm excited to take the glucose tolerance test next week.  In so many ways I am not looking forward to it - but it will be comforting to know the results.  Not to mention, I have another ultrasound scheduled at the same appointment and I am very much hoping to get a good photo of Miss Molly at this far into my pregnancy!  (Last time she was literally curled in a ball and the technician never even got a peek at her face.)  I'm excited about visiting the maternal fetal medicine doctor the following week, as well, to hopefully gain a better understanding of what's going on with Molly.  I'm also excited for consistently warmer temps and more visits to the park!

For those who read my review & entered the Preggers gift card giveaway, a winner was drawn by Rafflecopter a few days ago and Amanda Carrico is the lucky winner!  I planned on publishing this one earlier in the week - but I am just now getting around to it.  Thanks again to everyone who entered the drawing & better luck next time, homies!!!

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Currently x17 & positive affirmations {link ups}

So, today is somewhat of a link up dump!  I love both of these link ups & the hosts, so check them out. 
Currently: Harvesting Kale & Write Yourself Happy (Positive Affirmations): Smile & Write
First up, this week's prompts are {clearing, digging, mixing, reading, watching}


CLEARING:  Our bank account.  Man.  It seems like all I'm doing lately is spending money on groceries or something we need for the house.  Tony even talked me into a $60 leaf blower!  And he was very convincing!!!  (And on his behalf, it is something that we needed.  But still!)  This was on top of the new mower.  And a $45 extension cord.  And new curtains and a rod.  And a million other things.  I will be excited when it all settles down and starts to pay off.  We will also need shoe molding for the entire house (ughhhhh.... stupid project), a few area rugs (I'm thinking eventually for the living room, dining area, & bedroom), to install a new disposal (which was "working" before we moved in & cleared the inspection.... somehow...), a weed eater... and that is just the short list.  It's all very exciting but I am going to feel much better when we are spending less!

DIGGING:  The fact that it is almost Thursday already.  The Scandal finale is tomorrow and I can hardly wait!  I'm several episodes behind with Grey's Anatomy... as usual, but thankfully we have a few more weeks before that season finale.  I'm also SUPER behind on Parenthood & How I Met Your Mother... which YES... means I have NOT seen the finale yet and NO I would not like any spoilers!  The speakers for our computer went out so I just need to catch up on my phone.  Eventually.

MIXING:  I am feeling EXTREMELY mixed on whether or not to transition Presley to a toddler bed before Molly comes.  So many pros/cons and informed opinions.  Ultimately, the decision is ours because every kid is different from the next and as her parents, we know her best.  The thing that is completely throwing me off is the fact that she is STILL UP as I type - an hour after she laid down in her crib!  It is SO DISHEARTENING going from a serious sleeper to someone who plays at bedtime now for so long.  Will this get better in a toddler bed, stay the same, or get worse?  I guess I'm just worried that she isn't ready for it.  I'm worried that she will backslide once Molly is here.  And I'm worried it will affect all of our sleep!  Tony's response?  "Well we can't keep her in a crib forever."  -_-  I wonder if switching to a video monitor for Presley would take some of that anxiety away.

READING:  I just got involved in giving myself a reading challenge with the Goodreads website/app.  I think once I have Molly I am going to regret setting such an ambitious challenge for myself - which is 24 books this year.  Especially considering I started the challenge in April.  Usually, this wouldn't be so bad, but with a newborn?  I am thinking it's just not gonna happen (I'm already 6 books behind schedule...) but we'll see.  Reading any amount of books is better than none at all.  I started the challenge re-reading the Hunger Games and I am still stuck there.  I have not been able to keep my eyes open at night to read!  The book, however, is just as awesome as I remember.

WATCHING:  We've been watching "Ultimate Car Build-off" on Netflix the past few nights (you can guess who chose this) and it is a really good show.  Cars and sports are two of Tony's favorite pastimes and hobbies and thank the good Lord that I've honestly come to love them both as well.  Of course, not as fervently as he does, but I do really enjoy them nonetheless.  Anyways, they have to do these crazy challenges on the show and these shop guys are pretty spectacular with what they can pull off with random vehicles in 40 hours!

Five affirmations for my life:

  • A ship in port is safe but that's not what ships are built for.  Grace Murray Hopper
  • You is kind.  You is smart.  You is important.  Aibileen Clark
  • I am thankful for today.
  • Never apologize for being sensitive or emotional.  It's a sign that you have a big heart, and that you aren't afraid to let others see it.  Showing your emotions is a sign of strength."  Brigitte Nicole
  • Therefore, what God has joined together, let not man separate.  Matthew 19:6

I plan to incorporate a couple of these the more I begin decorating - the first two are absolutely going up somewhere in this home.  The first one on the list is very special to me and became ingrained in my heart during a TEC weekend a few years ago.  The second definitely speaks to my heart and is from the movie/book The Help at one of the most moving points of the story for me.  The last affirmation on the list is something that has always given me comfort in the struggles that come in our marriage.  The third and fourth on the list are such needed reminders for me - to just stop and be THANKFUL for today and to also stop apologizing when expressing genuine emotions... especially the ones that might make myself/others feel a little uncomfortable at first (such as crying).

I'd love to know what you guys have currently been up to and/or the five affirmations that resound for you.  You can link up through the bloggers listed above!  Thanks to both hosts for bringing bloggers together and giving us the chance to express ourselves further.

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Happies & Crappies.

Today is so not my day.  The beginning of today was so not my day.  Thankfully, it all turned around and ended on a sweet note.

  •  Drove over an hour round trip to Memphis Lights Gas & Water downtown to pick up some paperwork that MLGW sent to our new home but never ended up making it to us somehow... they told me I had to visit their office as they couldn't send it back out (awesome).  Of course it is in the 30s-40s today and VERY windy + Presley has a cold and a very runny nose.  Great combo!  The trip ended up being a WASTE of time (don't even want to get into that fact).
  • To top of the morning's trip - while Presley and I were crossing the street, we hit the trolley tracks just right wrong and the stroller flipped over to where Presley landed face down on the pavement and I landed belly first right into the handlebars.  iPod, iPhone, and keys go flying everywhere... all in the middle of the street!!!!  AHHH!  I just wanted to give up.  Poor Presley was SO upset because I'm sure that did not feel good.  I gave Presley the option of getting back in the stroller or walking the rest of the way and needless to say the stroller became obsolete after that accident.
    This is pretty much EXACTLY where we bit the dust in the road.
  • Once we were home, Presley somehow rolled off the couch while she was laying there.  This girl cannot catch a break today!
  • I'm not sure what caused it to be exact, but now that Presley is in her room for a nap, I have got a splitting headache.
  • Seems like no matter when we try to plan a trip to visit Amanda, John, Anne Marie, Sammy & new baby Matthew - something comes up and makes it a little more difficult to execute. 
  • Just been missing my QC friends a whole heck of a lot lately.  It sucks that so many of them were just becoming mommies as I was leaving and now not only am I missing out on their sweet friendship but also missing out on the mommy/kiddo moments we could have had.  I know life goes on and our friendships will, too, but it's just been bumming me the heck out lately.
  • I've had Disney on the brain lately and just constantly find myself dreaming of going back on my honeymoon with Tony again.  I know that we would probably be homesick the moment we got there for our Presley girl and wish she were with us... but a toddler at WDW sounds like less of a vacation to me then if it were just the two of us.  Not to mention, financially, that kinda trip just won't be happening anytime soon!  But for some reason I just can't tell my brain to drop it!!! 

  • Tony & I got to go on our first date in a long long time and it was so nice!  My mother-in-law came over to spend the night on Saturday and watched Presley while Tony & I went out to dinner at Chipotle!  We just watched the Chipotle special on Netflix and it really made us want to go there.  And it was DELICIOUS.  Seriously awesome, fresh, good food!
  • When we wiped out in the middle of the road downtown, this nice guy ran over to us from way down the street to make sure we were okay.  He told me I was doing a really good job taking care of my baby and that she was a tough little girl.  He offered her a cough drop - which was sooo nice but I had to decline because sometimes the crazy people ARE the nice ones!  Even with the minor creepy factor, it was really touching that he would come all that way to check on us.
  • My OB/GYN office called me today to give me the information for our referral to the maternal fetal medicine doctor for Molly's kidneys.  My appointment is about two weeks away and thankfully on a Monday so hopefully Tony will be able to take off that day and go with me.
  • Speaking of kidneys... I get frequent e-mails from WebMD on various topics and yesterday I randomly got an e-mail on the function of kidneys!  I thought that was a nice little refresher and a funny coincidence.
  • Thankfully, Matthew's baptism is coming up in a few weeks.  So, even if we can't coordinate a trip, we will definitely be meeting him then.  (Which hopefully we can just do both - go visit them and then see them again on baptism weekend!)  That weekend should definitely be a good one - a bunch of family in town PLUS we're having our housewarming party the day before his baptism!  Can't wait!!!
  • I took a short, glorious nap while Presley napped.  Didn't plan on it, but definitely must have needed it. 
  • For the second day in a row, I was able to run errands sans Presley after Tony got home from work.  He's such a good man/husband/daddy/lover! :)
  • Since the weather turned cold today (and tonight), Tony had the great idea to use our fireplace for the first time!  HEAVENLY.  And he suggested chicken tortilla soup for dinner - another huge hit.  (I used the recipe above plus lime juice, salsa in place of rotel, black beans, cumin, chili powder, minced garlic... and topped it with shredded cheese, avocado, & tortilla strips! YUM.)  Ended the evening with some of our leftover peach cobbler.  YUM!

Monday, April 14, 2014

Marriage Monday: Our Song.

After reading Mandi's post on this topic (thanks to link ups with NFP & Me and Camp Patton), I thought it'd be a perfect opportunity to reminisce.

When Tony & I started dating, a special song for us was "Hanging by a Moment" by Lifehouse.  It was popular at the time and a feel-good, loving song and we just mutually agreed on it as our song!

 I'm falling even more in love with you
Letting go of all I've held on to
I'm standing here until you make me move
I'm hanging by a moment here with you
I'm living for the only thing I know
I'm running and not quite sure where to go
And I don't know what I'm diving into
Just hanging by a moment here with you

 And a little while later, at prom, our first dance together was "Only God Knows Why" by Kid Rock.  Not exactly ideal or extremely romantic in the usual sense, but it was definitely popular at the time.  And I love that it has a funny story attached to it!

And when your walls come tumbling down
I will always be around

We almost ALWAYS get it mixed up with "Picture" by Kid Rock & Sheryl Crow.  "Picture" will come on and I'll say "Awww... it's the first song we danced to!" and for the first half of the song we are being all googly-eyed and sweet and then EVERY TIME one of us realize "WOOPS! Wrong song!!"

I found your picture today
I swear I'll change my ways
I just called to say I want you to come back home
I just called to say, I love you come back home 
When our wedding was fast approaching, picking all the right music was so fun and important to us!  Like so many women, I wrote out an entire list of possible songs - songs that either one of us loved, both of us loved, meaningful songs to us, notorious love songs, etc. and went over and over the list.  You know when it was so awesome to make mix tapes (well, CDs...) for the people you love?  Well, Tony got MANY CDs from me over the years and every so often he would make one for me and I can tell you they meant so much to me.  This song ended up on one of them and ever since it has been special to us.  So when it came to picking our first song we wanted something that meant a lot to us and hadn't been OVERLY used.  It was perfect for us.

However far away, I will always love you
However long I stay, I will always love you
Whatever words I say, I will always love you
I will always love you

I love all of our songs, the various meanings and memories they hold for us, and feel like it makes one heck of a balanced playlist.  I still get the same butterflies in my stomach when I hear "Hanging by a Moment" as I did ten years ago and I literally can feel my brain being transported back in time.  And just a few weeks ago I played "Love Song" by 311 on the Jukebox at dinner... it still feels just as special as it did three years ago.  (Now if I could've only talked Tony into dancing with me at the restaurant!!!!  Next time, for sure.)

It makes me curious - what are some of the songs that have meant a lot to you and your significant other over the years?  And how did they come to be special to you?

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