Friday, May 31, 2013

Over Halfway

We have passed the halfway mark!  This picture is from earlier this week.  This weekend actually marks the entrance into week 22.  

I must say, I'm starting to really feel pregnant!  I was super lucky to not have to deal with crazy morning sickness or vomitting.  But now things are becoming more realistic.  I get winded and tired more easily and have to take breaks when running around doing stuff.  My back aches by the end of the day (and recently the feet, but I've been up on them more in the past few days!).  

But the reason I really feel pregnant now is that Babycakes (so named by little Gabbie) has become very active! She is constantly reminding me of her presence and usually picking in opportune times to make herself known.  Like deciding to kick and punch just after I've eaten and have a full tummy, or doing what I believe are somersaults when I lay down.  I really enjoy knowing that she's in there, just wish her timing worked better with my comfort ;-).  

Several people have asked me, "What does it feel like?".  In the beginning, it just felt like little spasms.  Online, the first fetal movement is usually described as "gas bubbles".  To me, it felt like a muscle spasming - you know when your calf muscle starts twitching and there's nothing you can do to stop it.  Now, her movements have developed more into what I relate to as that feeling you get in your stomach right before a big drop on a roller coaster.  Ha ha - I think that's when she's somersaulting.  It's like your stomach is rolling (think like feeling nauseous, only the location of the feeling is below your stomach).  Steve is now able to feel her kicks and punches, and they can even be seen now.

We still are trying to decide on what to do with the nursery.  I think we have it narrowed down to a few options; but honestly, that could change - haha!  But since we have a few more weeks of traveling and other things planned, I'll worry about the nursery at the end of the month. 

Now that we've reached the halfway point, it's becoming more real.  Recently, we've both had little freak outs over realizing what is going to happen come October.  Sure we knew we were ready to have a baby, but I don't feel like you really grasp that concept until you're well down that path.  But there's no turning back!  Part of me wants the next 20 weeks to fly by as quickly as the first 20 did; but then the other part of me takes over and says SLOW IT DOWN!  I HAVE MORE TO GET DONE!!

Monday, May 27, 2013

Back Home

It's good to be home . . for now!

It seems like all of a sudden we are living out of suitcases instead of in our home.  We have a few different travel adventures planned out for the summer and a handful of them all happened to line up right after each other.

Last week was the start of the business trips.  Steve was out of the country in Prague for a week. While he was there, he was checking out equipment his company has ordered for their new project.  He was the leader and took a team with him to work out any kinks that developed.  Unfortunately, there were lots of kinks and for a few days it looked like his trip was going to be extended; however, after convincing his boss him staying there wouldn't help anything, he got to return home as planned! Yay!!

While Steve was in Prague, I headed to Indiana to visit family.  While I was there, I got to visit with a favorite teacher, spend lots of time with a close friend, and of course spent lots of time with family and my cute nieces. The highlight of my trip was going maternity clothes shopping with my mom and oldest sister.  I was way past due on getting maternity clothes, but knew it would be well worth holding off to go with mom & sister.

I had my eyes on one specific store - Motherhood. I had looked at other places online in advance, but knew this store would specifically have size long jeans that I desperately needed. The were running some pretty good deals like buy one pair of shorts get another half off; buy three shirts get 1 free; and get $30 to spend later for every $75 I spent now!  So not only did I come away with 5 tops, a pair of jeans, and 2 pairs of shorts, I have extra money to buy more at the end of the month!  On top of those great deals, I signed up my pregnancy and got a little care package with a bottle, coupons, and a $20 Shutterfly card -- all total perks and well worth the wait.  It feels so good to finally have clothes that fit right!

Now we're both back home and trying to enjoy the comforts of our own bed, freedom of our kitchen, and tackling some house projects before heading out again.  Next up is a little more business mixed with pleasures.  We're headed to our old home state of Tennessee.  Steve has to do some business in Knoxville before meeting up with great friends in Gatlinburg.  Our return trip from Tennessee is going to be longer for me than it is Steve.  We'll spend 6 hours in the car together to make it back to Ohio, just in time for me to get back in the car and head 3 hours to Indiana for a quick visit.  The next day, I'll be headed on a field trip with my favorite Mrs. B for her annual Chicago trip.

All of those hours in a car in a few days will be good practice for what comes next -- road tripping to Florida! Ha!  Okay, the road trip portion wasn't the original plan, but it ends up being cheaper since we're going with my parents.  The real vacation comes when we hit Florida - a Caribbean cruise!  This will be our last big hurrah before Baby Girl arrives.  And if you know Steve at all, staying put in one spot for too long drives him crazy.  Hopefully this cruise will tie him over for awhile until travelling with a baby becomes a real option.

We have a couple of other little trips planned in the summer but those are more spread out and in July.  For now, we're living our whirlwind of travel while I'm up for it and feeling good!

Monday, May 13, 2013

It's A . . .

We found out this afternoon that we are having a little baby girl!  She will fit right in with her other 4 girl cousins, haha!  We of course are excited to finally know what we're having so we can prepare for our little girl!  Up first is finally getting to finish the nursery.  We're still finalizing the theme we're going to go with and the colors. 

The most important thing for us was finding out that baby is healthy. She measured right on track and everything looks great.  There was some concern over a possible issue with her feet, but our doctor assured us that he just thinks it was her positioning.  All during the ultrasound, she had her feet tucked up under her "Indian Style".  She stretched out a couple of times, and when she did her feet looked normal.  So for now we're putting that worry at the back of our minds (if there is an issue, it's a small one that can be dealt with once she's born).  

Now for the hard part, picking out a name.  We have been throwing random names out for awhile.  There's a couple that we sort of agree on, but nothing is really sticking out yet.  We both see that there will be plenty of time before we have to really pick one out.  As of now, I don't think we plan on sharing the name until baby is here.  But we'll worry about that when we have a name chosen.

Oh, and baby girl is a mover!  About a week or so, I had started to feel little twitches and weird sensations that I assumed were baby.  Well now she is making her presence known!  Many times throughout the day I feel her twisting, thumping, kicking, having a party, etc.  I'm not sure what she's doing, but I do know I feel it!  Steve was lucky enough one night to feel her thump a few times.  It's still pretty light.  I don't know if I'm ready for the big kicks and punches.  Her little bumps and nudges already can be cumbersome.  I know that all those little bumps just mean she's happy and growing and I couldn't ask for more!

Thursday, May 9, 2013

A Visit with Gabbie

A week ago today, I picked up a cute little hitchhiker.  Don't worry, it wasn't a random person, it was just Gabbie!  She has called several times in the past month or so asking to come visit, but it hadn't worked out.  Last week when she called, I didn't have a good reason to delay any longer.  I met her and her mom at our usual midpoint stop - a Subway/gas station in a tiny town in Indiana.  After hanging out and eating lunch (which was way too long for Gabbie because she was afraid we'd change our minds and she'd go back home with her mom) we headed back to my house.

While she was here we played dolls, played tag outside, blew bubbles, visited the neighbor (and their cat!), went to a park and played on the playground, played board games, watched movies, and even went garage saling with friends.

(Gabbie explained to me that these were new pajamas.  They looked a little small and after asking her mother, discovered they are her favorite and she had a melt down over putting them away for good.  On the first night, we attempted to sleep on an air mattress in my bedroom (Steve sleeping on our bed).  However, after only being a sleep an hour or so, our mattress was deflating and I called it quits.  We packed up all her toys and headed to the guest bed.  I was afraid that she would be too awake from the move to fall back asleep, but she didn't have any issue! Needless to say, the next night we just slept in the guest bed - ha!)

(Playing dolls - Instead of pulling all the doll stuff downstairs, we played all the way up in the attic.  With the windows open, it made for a great playing space!  Notice how Gabbie's doll has a headband, and Gabbie is wearing 2 headbands!  This girl loves headbands!  Whenever she visits, she raids my stash and wears a different one every day.)

(There's a park that is nearby our house, and I took her there before but we went to the wrong area and only found a slide.  This time, I did a little more research and knew exactly where to go.  We found this massive playground with 9 slides, all sorts of climbing areas, and swings.  This girl played and ran around for almost 2 hours! We went mid morning and there were only a few kids that trickled in and out.  We left around lunch time, and the place was getting packed.  She had a blast!)

(There were 2 slides that she really liked, this tall one, and then a tube/curly slide.  All of the slides were connected via walkways, stairs, etc. She would run all around the whole structure before picking which slide was next.  It was sort of a U shape, so I just sort of walked around the U to follow her.)

(Playing on the swingset!  This child loves the baby swings and sadly fits into them better than the regular seat- haha!

(Later in the afternoon, while waiting to go see the neighbor's cat, we played outside in the yard.  First we blew some bubbles, then played some tag.  We then were looking for a shovel in the garage when Gabbie found Steve's skateboard.  This daredevil couldn't get on it fast enough.  I let her play with it - on one condition - she had to hold my hand while standing on it!  This child needs a helmet just in normal life let alone on a slim board with wheels.  She road up and down the driveway several times and couldn't wait to tell Steve about it later!)

(While outside, we also happened to see not 1, but 2 owls!  They're hard to see, but both are mid picture.  1 is right by the trunk, the other is on the branch to its left.  We watched them fly across to another tree and hang out.  We even found them again later when Steve was home.  We've decided Gabbie is good luck charm with the owls because she was with us when we spotted one for the first time!)

Gabbie headed home on Saturday afternoon.  But that morning, we got up and headed to a big neighborhood garage sale with friends.  Gabbie was super good while we drug her all over.  We found some random High school Musical stuff for her and sisters and she even got to pick out a special stuffed bear.  But the BEST find of the day, was a dinosaur themed nursery set!  Even though we don't know what we're having yet, it was too good of a deal to pass up!  We got 4 stuffed animals, hanging mobile, picture frame, bumper pad, crib sheet, crib skirt, pillow, and a hanging quilt for $40!  The set was in great condition, the animals didn't look touched, and the picture frame was still in its package. After doing research later, we figured out that set brand new would cost $225+!  We figured even if it's a girl, we could girly the set up, or pack it away for the next baby.

(A couple of the animals, pillow, and decorative quilt)

Only downside, when we got home, I discovered the stuff was full of animal hair.  I washed everything, and spent over an hour with a lint roller de-hairing it.  If Bean is a boy, I'll probably do that whole process all over again just to make sure it's all gone; otherwise, it'll go into storage and taking care of later.