Friday, December 16, 2011


So... I have an awesome, patient, hardworking, happy-go-lucky, silly, caring, sweet, strong, thoughtful, dedicated husband!!!!  I really do.  This guy gets up before the sun and comes home after it has set nearly every day from work right now being on overtime and I rarely ever even hear a peep out of him about it.  I wouldn't mind if he complained everyday about it either, I'm not marveling at the fact that he doesn't complain about it, I am just so taken aback at his dedication and endless discipline.  He works hard for himself, for me, for our future, and for our growing family at work and then comes home and continues to work most days on various projects around here.  And at the end of his 10 hour workday, he comes home and finds time to put up with me... to be silly with me and to listen to me talk about my day like it's the most interesting thing he's heard all day.  I don't mean to sound like he is a superhero or does more than most husbands out there, but he IS honestly a superhero to me and he is more to me than any other man could be in my eyes.  Tonight, he put together our baby's crib and it just really cemented all these realizations for me.  I mean, it's one thing for him to come home and work hard on dishes or doing heavy lifting around here (things that I am so lucky to have support and help with) but it's an entirely different thing to see him do something so sweet like putting together a crib.  Everyday it becomes more and more of a reality to me the words that his Granny told me... I will never find a better man (or better friend) than him.  Our life is already so different than it was seven months ago, and I didn't see our lives taking this turn so soon, but he has sure coped with it so well and brings me just as much happiness as ever.  And the truth is, I can try and share with you the feelings between the two of us, but the best parts are those moments that no one but me gets to experience.

And the wonderful thing is I know I am not the only one to have such a rockstar for a spouse.  I'm not writing this to make anyone feel like their relationship is any less special or important or to make anyone feel like I have a perfect life, but I am writing this to let Tony and everyone else know that I am blessed with a totally wonderful AND imperfect marriage.  I think it is SO important to sit back and reflect on our blessings rather than the things that frustrate us on a daily basis and it is especially important to let the people in our lives who put up with our crap know how much they mean to us by our actions.  So, for the rest of the holiday season, my ultimate gift to Tony is going to be showing him how much he is loved and appreciated because while I'm sure he is grateful for my kind words, my actions speak much greater than anything I could type on my blog.  That is exactly what he deserves and I hope that once the holidays are over that I am able to continue to show him how much I love him on a regular basis.

After all that, here is the finished product:

It is just beautiful!!!

In other news, I might not be doing much blogging for some time (but of course I'll try to make time for it because it is so therapeutic!) as my sister is coming in town TOMORROW and we'll be busy bee's from now until after the new year!  In the next two and a half weeks we'll be in Chicago, Nashville, Chattanooga, Atlanta, Memphis, and not to mention all the stops in between!  This is going to be such a fun time for us to be around family and friends that we miss so much -- I hope we can find a way to make these moments stay with us as long as possible.  I hope everyone else is able to do the same this holiday!  Dwell on the things and people that are important to you and let them know it.

Filled to the BRIM with love and gratitude....

Monday, December 12, 2011

29 weeks & 3 days!

I am CRAZY about this baby!  :)  I am so excited to meet her, honored I get to carry her, feel so special each and every time she kicks me (okay, sometimes, I am still annoyed by the constant kicking!), and just realizing that my life is never going to be the same once I see her face.  With various friends and family members giving birth within the last week (both whom had precious baby girls!) it has really got me anxious for my turn.  What will my labor and delivery experience be like?  I know I have so much to do within these next 10 weeks or so -- including mapping out a birth plan with my OB.  And considering we'll be traveling and out of town for 2 of those weeks, we are really down to 8 weeks of getting things ready around the house and preparing ourselves for the changes to come.  It's plenty of time, but if I keep thinking we have "plenty of time" I will keep putting these major (and minor) things off for another time.

My huge belly!
I've been thinking about what to pack for the hospital lately, as well.  I really love the checklist the Similac website offers.  And I'm excited to get to the point where I should start packing the bag!  The excitement of it all is helping me get things done around here because as those of you who know me, I am more of a type B personality when it comes to doing things!  I feel like I'm starting to formulate in my mind all the loose ends (like cleaning out my car...) that need to be tackled soon in addition to the more obvious things that need to be done around the house.  Now, to throw myself into doing these things that my mind is thinking of at a million miles an hour... if I could just get my body to move as fast as my mind in this area!!!

That's about all for tonight... just felt the need to empty out my brain a bit before the night ends for me!

Sunday, December 11, 2011

29 week Pregnancy Reflection!

How far along?:  I am currently in my third trimester at 29 weeks & 2 days  (about 7.5 months) pregnant with my first little baby!

10 weeks & 5 days left!

Size of the baby:  This week our baby is the size of a butternut squash!

17 inches and 3.1 lbs!  Holy moly....

Gender:  A baby girl!  And man, I am SO ready for her to be here in so many ways.

Movement:  Presley's movement is getting more and more amazing each week.  New this week is feeling specific body parts press out of my skin!!!  Sounds crazy -- it certainly FEELS crazy -- but it is SO awesome.  Today I think it was her fist or something super tiny COMPLETELY poking out of my belly.  She held it there for just long enough for me to rub my hand along it and then went back into hiding.  It was so incredible.

Cravings/Aversions:  Definitely noticed I am craving cinnamon-flavored things!  One of my favorite snacks around the house is a bowl of Special K's cinnamon pecan cereal.  Also, love making cinnamon rolls at home about once a week for a little something special.  Still eating a lot of clementines --but slowing down on that obsession.  Still have an off-the-wall craving for shrimp cocktail so I am honestly considering running to the store tomorrow for some.

I am feeling:  Pretty great these days.  I feel guilty for not getting to the gym at all this week so hopefully I'll do better this upcoming week!

What I miss most:  At this point, I am starting to feel like it is entirely unfair that I can't get into a hot tub.  My joints are always sore (especially my hips after tossing and turning every night) and the only thing that sounds better than a massage is a looooong soak in a hot hot tub!  I also miss being able to sleep on my back and tummy and will thoroughly enjoy that once the baby is here.  I miss being able to do anything without getting sore or being short of breath and I definitely miss being able to bend over to put on socks!!!

Best moment of the week:  I loved the pregnancy classes that I took this week.  It's really making everything feel so much more real at each stage.  I loved hanging out with my mom most of the day Thursday and I also enjoyed finishing Star Wars episodes 1-3 with Tony this weekend.  And I also LOVED adding to our Target registry with Tony this weekend.  We have so much fun together and I just love seeing what he envisions for our little girl.

So ready to be with these crazy, awesome people!!! Hope they're ready for us! :)
What I'm most looking forward to:  I'm super excited for Amanda to get here Friday, for a trip to Chicago this upcoming weekend, for my family's Christmas get together, ready to leave to visit family, and VERY excited for our first baby shower at the end of the month thrown by Tony's family!!!!  I'm so ready to see them because they are so wonderful and truly exude the love they feel for us and I am ready to feel that and to be around them!  Also, very excited to see my OB at my next appointment on the 19th!

Goals for this week:  This past week, I sucked at my goals and checked almost nothing off this list!  So here's hoping we get EVERYTHING done this week!  1) Get the crib up, 2) Arrange the nursery how we want it, 3) Get curtains and X-mas lights up in bedroom, 4) Figure out where the water is coming from in the corner of our room, 5) Get the house ready for our visitor, 6) Clean out my car:  trunk & back seat!
And I am certainly not getting anything done by sitting here at the computer!!!! :)  Hopefully we all have productive weeks because I definitely need one!!!


Thursday, December 8, 2011

The Parent I Want to Be.

Have you ever felt so empowered by the positivity passed on from someone else that you could cry?  Okay, maybe this is coming from a place filled with pregnancy hormones... but really, have you ever felt like that, pregnancy or no pregnancy?  You guessed it, I totally feel like that right now.  Every week I go to prenatal and parenting classes at a local place called "Pregnancy Resources."  They offer pregnant women a chance to learn more about what they embarking on as well as giving free diapers for the classes you attend with chances to earn things like a free crib, car seat, as well as free maternity and baby clothes.  At the class today we discussed ways to be an affirming, attentive, and connected parent as mapped out in the Parrott's book "The Parent You Want to Be" and it filled me full of great ideas.  And for the first time in a LONG time, I am starting to feel at peace with becoming a parent;  knowledge really is power.  I'm starting to feel like I am one of those people who really was made for this, not just something I am accidentally stumbling into because I am biologically able to have children.  Instead, I am feeling capable of loving a little person and making them feel like they belong to someone in this world.  Ahh, I love it.

So, more about feeling empowered....

Tonight in class the instructor asked everyone some of their fears in parenting, specifically, what are you afraid will influence your child in a negative way?  People said things like the media, peers, etc. and for one reason or another illness popped into my head.  Like many first time parents, I am terrified at the possibilities of mental and physical ailments burdening my baby, especially illnesses that run in the family (mood disorders, diabetes, etc).  Not to mention, I am also afraid of the possibility of other mental and physical illnesses that would deeply change our lives.  I'm thankful our instructor addressed each and every fear addressed because her observation is the reason I feel so at peace tonight.  She suggested that instead of asking God for a perfect, healthy child, we should instead be asking for the capability to love our child, no matter what may come.  And in that instant, the part of my brain filled with those worries released them and turned into a place of understanding and love.  In addition, my prayers are going to change drastically as well.  Like I said, this has already brought me so much peace.  I realized that asking God for what I want to be done is really doing me injustice... I've been asking God for a healthy child to love -- as if I couldn't or wouldn't be able to love one who isn't.  (Of course, that is not what I feel inside or what I was asking for, but essentially that is where my fears obviously lie.) 

And afterall, isn't that what we promise to do for our spouses when we say our vows when we dedicate that we will love them no matter what may come...
"I take you for my lawful wife/husband, to have and to hold, from this day forward, for better, for worse, for richer, for poorer, in sickness and health, until death do us part."  
Why should that be any shock or any different for someone else we are bringing into this world?  It shouldn't be and really, it isn't shocking -- it just surprises me that I was looking at these things from a different angle than what I am seeing now.  It is a great feeling.

Anyways, if you think you'd be even the least bit interested, you should give that book I linked above a look or two.  It is full of practical ways to be an affirming, attentive, connected, patient, authentic, insightful parent everyday and is written by a pair of married doctors with two little boys of their own.  It doesn't just follow their philosophies, but the philosophies of many parents they talked to and surveyed.  I will definitely be ordering myself a copy after tonight's wonderful class!


God, I ask you to give us the ability to be loving parents to whomever we are greeted with in February.  This child has already been such a blessing to each of us personally, to our marriage and our extended families as well.  I ask that You continue to soothe my worries with the peace You've given me today;  there is a definite amount of peace in switching from my will filled with selfish ways to Your will that is full of selflessness and humility.  I pray I never forget that I am called to be Your servant in every way.   
Thank you for today.

"But from there you will seek the LORD your God, and you will find Him if you search for Him with all your heart and all your soul."
                               Deuteronomy 4:29

Monday, December 5, 2011

28 week Pregnancy Reflection!

How far along?:  As of today I am 28 weeks & 3 days along in my first pregnancy with 11 weeks & 4 days to go!

A picture I took halfway through last week!

 Size of the baby:  This week the baby is the size of a small cabbage!

We have a cabbage patch baby this week - 17 inches and 2.9 lbs!

Gender:  Could not be MORE excited for our baby girl!!!!

Movement:  I've found she doesn't move a whole lot while I'm at work in the AM as she probably likes to sleep in if she's anything like her parents!  The most popular time for Presley to be moving around is early-late evening, especially if we're lounging around watching a movie. 

Cravings/Aversions:  This past week I went crazy for fruit eating a TON of clementines, bananas, and honey-crisp apples (why do I have to like the most expensive ones?!).  I had some delicious strawberries as well which was a nice surprise as they're usually icky by this time of year.  I'm also really liking the way milk is tasting and still loving sugary things like candy bars and desserts of all kinds.

I am feeling:  Kinda weird after the glucose test today.  My stomach doesn't exactly hurt... it just feels a little funny.  I've also been even more tired than usual these past few days and will just fall asleep at any given time throughout the day in the middle of things.  Thankfully I have the sweetest husband who lets me sleep even though there are things that need to be done around the house; not sure what I'd do without his support and unconditional love.

The sugary orange drink; it wasn't TERRIBLE but wasn't wonderful either.

Best moment of the week:  I would have to say one of the best moments of the week happened Saturday-- when I woke up from an afternoon nap Tony had rearranged the furniture in the living room, put up the tree, and got furniture out of the spare bedroom we didn't need in there anymore.  Not only did I feel refreshed after the nap, but it was such a good feeling seeing how much work he put into the house in that short amount of time!

What I'm most looking forward to:  Amanda coming to visit, going to Chicago (Portillos, IKEA, downtown, ETC!!!) for the weekend, family Christmas get together --all happening next week!  I only wish Ashley could be here for all of it, too, and their significant others and then it'd really be a party!!!  BUT, we'll all be reunited soon enough!

Goals for this week:  1) Get the crib up, 2) Arrange the nursery how we want it, 3) Get curtains and X-mas lights up in bedroom, 4) Figure out where the water is coming from in the corner of our room, 5) Get the house ready for our visitor

On a totally different note:  Today is a special day, it's Walt Disney's 110th birthday!  Walt Disney is one of my favorite people in all of history so I'm going to take a moment to celebrate his life today.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY, WALT!  If it wasn't for your vision, my husband and I wouldn't have had the blissful, magical, completely unforgettable honeymoon and all around best weeks of our lives that we had.  We are constantly dreaming about going back someday and now it'll be even more special to share it with our little one sometime in the future.  You keep making dreams come true even after you've passed on --if we could all be lucky enough to make such an impact someday there would be way more smiles on this planet!!!  Walt Disney wanted to build a park that adults and children could enjoy together-- most especially so he could enjoy the daddy/daughter time he spent with his girls.  I was one of those lucky kids who got to do just that with my sisters and both of my parents as a child and it was a time I cherish now!!  So, big thanks to Walter Elias for all you've created and congratulations on all your success;  wish you could be here to celebrate today in all your glory!