Friday, May 29, 2009

The Apartment above a Bar

I was reminiscing about the good ole partyin' days a couple weekends ago with Chris and Alexa and I decided that one of the stories might be worth telling to the general public. Before we owned the house we live in now, Travis and I lived above a bar in downtown Galveston. It was the perfect place to live at that point in our lives. Now, it would totally not be worth it:
  • Two flights of stairs to climb daily would not be fun with a stroller, diaper bag and groceries;
  • Window AC units and one gas heater would not suffice with a newborn in the home;
  • Late night live bands at the bar below might be slightly entertaining during midnight feeds, but those drunk people throwing beer bottles in the road would seriously piss me off;
  • While it was fun at the time, random visits multiple times a week from whoever was going out to the bars that night would start to get irritating with a newborn on a schedule.

Another downside would be situations like this... One Friday night, many a moon ago, Travis decided to go bar hopping with an older guy friend of his. He has been known to have a drinking problem, which meant he would most likely be staying the night at our apartment. Somewhere around 3 in the morning, Travis stumbled into the bedroom, bouncing like a pinball between the bed and the wall. His repeat bounces off the bed woke me. A little irritated at his drunkenness, I just rolled over to go back to sleep. About 15 seconds later, I hear water pouring onto the floor. I assumed he had spilled his glass of water, so I sat up to see what I could do to mend the situation. I was still irritated, but figured if I helped him I would be able to go back to sleep sooner. When I sat up, I quickly realized that he was leaning against the wall peeing on his nightstand. !!! I slapped him on the arm and yelled, "Travis! You are peeing in our bedroom!" That's when he turns to me and says, "huh?!" and I notice IT'S NOT TRAVIS.

What the deuce?! I immediately jumped out of bed and ran into the living room to escape Random Dude In My Bedroom. It scared the begeezes out of me! Travis was passed out on the couch, so I shook him violently, screaming his name until he came out of drunken unconsciousness.

"YOUR FRIEND IS PEEING ON YOUR NIGHTSTAND!"

Again, with the "huh?"

"YOUR FRIEND IS PEEING ON THE NIGHTSTAND IN OUR BEDROOM!"

"What? No way."

"Yes way! Fix it!"

All my screaming woke up my sister, who was living with us at the time. She comes out to find out what's happening and I quickly explain the situation. In the meantime, Travis' friend had come out of our bedroom, closed the door and leaned against it. It looked like he might finish what he was doing on our bedroom door, so Ariel yells at the guy, "THAT IS NOT THE TOILET. THE BATHROOM IS OVER THERE," and points to our only restroom. He looked thoroughly embarrassed, even in his drunken state, and for some reason tried to fit between two couches to get to the bathroom. Ariel again, "NOT THROUGH THERE - YOU HAVE TO GO AROUND THE COUCHES," all the time gesticulating wildly in the direction he should take.

He finally made it to the restroom. I looked at Travis and told him he was going to take care of this situation on his own. I was mortified by it all and did not want to be around when his friend got out of the bathroom. Ariel invited me to sleep in her room for the night and I took her up on the offer. When I woke up in the morning I was a little afraid to leave Ariel's bedroom. When I finally did (the urge to pee finally won over - I wasn't about to pee on her nightstand), I found Travis' friend was gone and the bedroom mess had been cleaned up, although it did reek of urine for a couple days.

I am so happy about our decision to buy a home in early 2007. A large part of our decision was the money factor. Living above a bar made it very easy for both of us to drink too much since we were always within walking distance of home. We also decided that we would have to remain in Texas for several years to pay off some debt before returning home to Illinois after we had both graduated from college. So why not build equity in a home? We are yet to make the final decision on where to move to from here: Illinois or somewhere else around here. Either way, I plan to move from this house within two years.

It's amazing to see how much our lives have changed in just a few short years. I loved our time above that bar, but I am so happy to be where we are at this point. This change-thing is only going to continue exponentially from here.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

New Old Mirror

One of the many items we accomplished a couple weekends ago was hanging this mirror in the living room. Because it was such a heavy duty mirror, I bought a super duty hanging kit from Amazon. This is a mirror that we took off of the old dresser we had in the nursery before it was the nursery. It sort of has a 70's feel with the wood paneling on the right side, but I thought it was fun enough to hang above our TV.

We've been trying to decide what to put there for years. Originally I wanted to paint a stencil of a tree there, but then decided against it because we want the house to appeal to a wider group of buyers in a year or so. I'll have to save the more permanent personalization for the next house.

Just a quick note related to pregnancy... If it is at all possible, it feels like the baby has dropped even more. Maybe it's just because he's bigger now and taking up more space? At any rate, he's taken to ramming his skull into my bladder, which is a fairly unpleasant experience that usually involves me running to the bathroom only to find a momentary trickle. This also means that I have been getting out of bed EVERY TWO HOURS for the past several nights. I was kind of hoping this was just a stage, but I have a feeling its going to be a month long stage... You know, one that lasts until the baby is born.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Infant CPR & First Aid

Today marks 36 weeks. I had a doctor appointment yesterday and doc says that at this point, if I go into labor, then I'm going to have a baby. They would do absolutely nothing to stop him from coming. SCARY. Although, I'm measuring back at 36 weeks, so I guess his growing has slowed a bit. Yay!

I have started my weekly exams which means that I will get a regular update on how I'm progressing. As of right now, I'm not progressing AT ALL. No dilation, no effacement. The baby is in a head down position, but he's still floating around - not fixed and ready to go. There were a few other things that I talked with the doctor about, but I'll save you on the gory details. ;)

Last night Travis and I went to our last scheduled infant class: Infant CPR and First Aid. Alexa had an incident with Blair choking that ended up fine because there just happened to be a trained EMS in the next department at the store. Seeing as I might not be so "lucky" if this situation ever arises with Lil Wodie, I dragged Travis along with me to a class.

I do feel much better knowing that I have these skills now. The main training was on babies birth to 1 year old. The instructor told us what to do for kids older than that, but we didn't do repetitive training for that. It was really sad to walk into a room full of baby mannequins ready for practice. I have to say that the thought of performing ANY of these skills on a real baby scares the crap out of me. I hope that I NEVER encounter a situation when I need to do CPR on an infant. Or child or adult for that matter.

The instructor went over what to do if an infant is choking or needs CPR and then there was a bunch of safety equipment laid out on the tables for us to look at. Stuff like, gun locks and cabinet locks. It is crazy how much safety gear there is out there. At this point, I plan to wait and see what Lil Wodie wants to get into before going out and purchasing a bunch of preventative measures. I remember living with locks on our cabinets when I was little, so my brother couldn't get in and it drove me nuts. I just want to see what we can get away with.

Oh and a plus: Travis learned how to do the Heimlich on a pregnant woman. So if I'm ever choking on a hot dog, Travis won't damage my uterus by trying the normal maneuver under the rib cage. Just so you know, it's the similar move, just on the rib cage.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Memorial Day Weekend

The rest of the weekend was pretty busy too. Saturday night, I met up with a couple girlfriends from college for Mexican food. They were unable to make it to our baby shower, so they asked if we could meet up. They had seen the pictures from the shower and decided on a monkey themed gift. There was a baby blanket, some burp cloths and a super soft stuffed monkey from this great store in downtown Galveston. The end of the evening was sort of a taste of my future. The girls (who are without children) stood outside the restaurant discussing which bar they wanted to hit up first, as I waddled off to my car eager to get home to my husband. It's not a future I'm disappointed in by any means. It was just an interesting way to make me realize how much my life is about to change.

Travis had decided to spend the night at home. We made plans to rewire the kitchen on Sunday and there were a few things he wanted to get started. He was excited about taking care of my fajita leftovers when I got back. We were in bed by a decent time, eager to get up early and finish the kitchen in one day.

Sunday morning we were up by 8am to start the kitchen rewire. It was only one room, but required a lot of work underneath the house on Travis' part. I stayed up top to catch the wires he was pushing through. I didn't think it would be that big of a deal, but it ended up being a pretty uncomfortable situation. My belly got in the way when I was trying to peer into the outlets on the counter tops. Then my feet started to swell even worse because I was standing for so long. I brought a couple chairs into the kitchen so I could put my feet up between boxes (it took Travis a few minutes to maneuver under the house and prep the wires for feeding). Then my hands started to swell really bad because I was sticking them in and out of the outlet openings, scraping them on drywall, insulation and nails all the while.

Needless to say, I was a little uncomfortable. Then to make matters worse, we had a really hard time getting the wire to feed through to this one outlet. When I finally realized that there was a wood stud in our way, Travis came up from the muddy underside of the house to see what I was talking about. He was agitated, as was I, and he ended up yelling. It's not something we do very often, plus I'm pregnant, so the tears just started flowing. I had to go let it out in the bathroom before heading back to finish the job. Talk about annoying. I'm just not good with crying. Then, of course, Travis felt horrible. But I didn't want to dwindle on anything and just get the job done.

We had all the wire ran by the afternoon, so we had a late lunch and headed up to Home Depot to return the stuff we hadn't used and to buy a couple light fixtures. Since we were up that way, we stopped for groceries and then headed back home. Travis finished up the rest of the work since it was hooking up the outlets and light fixtures. I have no idea how to do that, so it was all Travis. Now we have a bunch of outlets (perfect for blenders and bottle warmers), a three-way light switch for the kitchen light, a new porch sconce and a flood light in the back yard to scare off the bad guys.

I have a feeling that is all we will get done on the electrical in our house until after the baby is born. All we have left is the guest bedroom/office and the attached half bath. Again, it would probably be a one day job, but I don't know if I'm up for another day of that while I'm pregnant.

Monday morning, Travis finally unclogged the bathroom sink. I had to stay in the other room so I didn't throw up, but Travis made sure to inform me that he found an entire Wookie hanging onto the bottom of the drain plug. But hey! The sink drain works again!

For lunch we grilled turkey burgers on the charcoal grill in the back yard. YUM! Then we spent an hour packing the diaper bag and installing the infant car seat in the car. It was so fun! I know that sounds dorky, but it was so much fun to pull out the little baby stuff. I think the car seat is in right, but I'm hoping to get it checked by someone who knows what they're doing. I forgot about it until I got into my car to drive into work this morning and looked in my rear view mirror. I'M SO EXCITED!!!

Travis spent the afternoon playing disk golf again, so I had Alexa over to hang out for a few hours. Travis was hoping to be home before dinner, but that plan quickly went down the drain. He dropped Robert off in Galveston and then was stuck for four hours because the traffic moving off the island was so bad. I guess everyone in the area had the idea to go to the beach for Memorial Day, topped with an accident on the interstate, slowed traffic to a snail crawl. Travis finally made it home around 10:40 with ice cream in hand. That stuff is going to be the death of me. I can't get enough!!!

PS - Did anyone who saw Jon and Kate Plus 8 think it was a super depressing episode?

Monday, May 25, 2009

Hooray for 3-day weekends!

Friday night I spent a girl's night with Rachel and a few other girls from work. Travis went to play disk golf with Robert and another friend. He ended up winning the course, so they treated him to dinner and a couple drinks at the bar just outside the park.

Girl's night was fun. I wish I would have known how much awesome food was going to be there because then I wouldn't have had dinner before I went! We talked for a while and then watched Bride Wars. I've seen it before, but I still thought it was funny.

Rachel had picked me up on our way up to the party so we could drive together. She has a GPS that her and her mother have lovingly named Joan. Joan did a great job of getting us TO the party, but not a not-so-great job of getting us home. Because we spent our drive so focused on Joan's directions to the house, we could not remember how to back out of the neighborhood. Instead, we relied on the GPS. We went about one block in the opposite direction from which we came in, because Rachel had parked facing that way. Therefore, Joan "recalculated" the directions out from over there. Unfortunately, the way she wanted us to go involved an impassible road under construction. According to the map on the GPS, we could drive a block further and hit another road to pass everything. But once we got there, we quickly realized it was a cul de sac - not a road we could take.

No problem. We'll go back a block, then go up a block and turn around there. AGAIN - hit a cul de sac, not a through road. By this point, Rachel and I were laughing so hard she had to stop the car in the middle of the road. We just kept going in this manner until we hit a main road that took us out. There was a Comcast truck coming in from that direction and we figured he had to be coming from somewhere. Thankfully, we made it otu of that subdivision. The sad part is it took us about 7 minutes longer to get out than it did to get in. We were laughing that if we had to call the party hostess for directions she would wonder what the hell we were still doing in her neighborhood 10 minutes after we had left. LOL!

Saturday was a laid back day. I did a few things around the house and then headed up to Alexa's for the day. Chris is out of town on a series of three trips that span a week so she was getting lonely. Even though he was sick, Blair was a great source of entertainment. It entertains me to no end to watch a kid learning and exploring things for the first time. He's a walking, talking fool these days. I can't believe it's only been a year since he was this little bundle that just stared at you when you held him. Kids sure grow up fast, huh?

Friday, May 22, 2009

The New (and hopefully temporary) Me

First, I have to mention that sleeping on my side opposite of my pinched nerve is doing wonders. (Thanks Da Momma!) I have felt significantly better each day for the past several days. Today I feel EVEN better because I don't have the soreness leftover from those stupid Charlie Horses that ruined my sleep a couple nights ago. I'm even able to walk without looking like a robot. =)

Last night after work, Travis and I went over to Ariel and Robert's apartment to go swimming in the pool. I have been dying to find out what it's like to swim while pregnant. I was hoping it would relieve the problem you can see in Figure A at the right of this post. You'll notice that my right ankle is significantly more puffy than the left. Don't be fooled. I'm not wearing four pairs of socks on that foot. It's all ME.

Rachel thinks the reason that foot is so much more swollen than the other is because my left hip has been hurting so badly that I've been trying to keep my weight off the left side of my body. Unfortunately, it's causing the right side to rebel.

Swimming in the cool water did help with the swelling a bunch. Albeit, a temporary fix. The swelling is back this morning. Also while swimming, I had a strange sensation due to the enlarged belly. I think it must be slightly buoyant because I felt pressure in my chest, making it difficult to breathe. Imagine a basketball trying to fit in underneath your rib cage. It's sort of the same effect I get when I lay on my back.

All in all, it wasn't horrible. My hips and back definitely liked it! The only thing is I couldn't swim. The process of doing the frog-kick hurt my hips too much, so I stuck to walking and floating. Pregnancy is a strange, strange thing. It's like I have a whole new body. One I can't wait to get rid of...

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Travis to the Midnight Rescue

I still can't figure out what the purpose is of some of these pregnancy "side effects". I think some of them should be dropped. Like swelling for example. I understand that it is a woman's body's way of preparing for the fluid loss during labor and delivery, but could we speed up natural selection and just have a bag of water that fills up in our belly or something? That seems like it would be much less traumatic than having to find that you no longer fit 90% of your shoes and having to witness the sausages that I pull out of my sneakers at the end of the day.

Also pointless? Pinched nerves. I mean really, how has the body not figured out a way to expand without pinching stuff off? What if it was a blood vessel?! Which I guess that problem sort of does arise if you lay on your back, causing the uterus to compress the inferior vena cava.

Last night's adventure involved the always fruitless Charlie Horse. I had a talk with Travis a few months ago about this problem I've been having. I get these random HORRIBLE calf cramps in the middle of the night. Before, I could take care of them because it was no problem to reach my lower leg. Nowadays, that's easier said than done. Especially with this pinched nerve thing. So last night, I had to shake Travis awake to massage the cramp out while I attempted to stretch my foot backward on his knee. It took him about 3 seconds of me squealing for him to squeeze my calf before he caught up with me. It worked magnificently and we were back asleep in mere minutes.

BUT THEN! Two hours later, the same damn thing happened to my right leg. I woke Travis up again and he helped me work out the cramp. This morning was hilarious. I thanked him for coming to my rescue twice in one night. His response? "What was that all about?" He had no idea what was going on. LOL! He said that he's had cramps in his legs before, but never randomly in the middle of the night. What?! I've been having these Charlie Horses off and on for months now and I always complain about it in the morning because it feels like I ran 10 miles in my sleep. Did he think I was joking?

Could there be anything else that might keep me awake at night? I've heard it a million times that the last couple months of pregnancy it is almost impossible to sleep, but now I'm actually experiencing it. I guess this is one way in which natural selection has prepared women for the onslaught of sleepless nights once the baby arrives. Why can't we just save our energy for the baby's arrival?

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Happy Birthday Chris!

Just thought this was cool:

Monday, May 18, 2009

My goldfish is not a goldfish

Wow. So this is the first weekend in over five weeks that I have not had anything planned for the weekend. While I do enjoy having a busy schedule, I was ecstatic to have two full days to get things done around the house and run a few errands.

At the end of last week, Alexa brought over three goldfish to add to our fish tank. We only had four fish and three of them were sucker fish that stayed on the bottom for the most part. Alexa felt bad for the lone Bubba (that's what she dubbed him due to the permanent "doh" face he has) and wanted to get him some friends. Bubba is an Ike evacuee, so I never knew what type of a fish he was. He's big and orange, so I assumed goldfish. So, Alexa picked up three new goldfish to be his friends. Unfortunately, one of the sucker fish did not like the golfish and proceeded to pick them off one at a time. By the time the second goldfish fell victim to the bottom feeder I knew who the culprit was. Travis flushed the second dead goldfish AND Hannibal Lector down the toilet. Stupid fish.

We attempted to buy some new fish to replace the two out of the three dead, but the store was completely out of goldfish! Wierd, huh? Anyhoo, while we were looking at the fish, we found out that Bubba is NOT a golfish, but an aggressive parrot cichlid. The cool part is, he's not some cheapy fish. They are $16 a pop at the pet shop! The problem is he is an "aggressive" fish. Meaning, we should only put other aggressive fish in the tank with him. There are a few other types of cichlids that we might get to put in the tank with him. In the safety of the one remaining goldfish, he may be going to live with Blair soon.

Friday evening, Travis took me on a movie date to see Star Trek. I felt like every other day I had someone new asking me if I had seen the new Star Trek movie because it was awesome. I told Travis that if I didn't seen this movie before Lil Wodie came I would be a little upset. So he did the dutiful thing and took me on a date! ;) I ate lots of sugar and we left the movie without one bathroom break! My only complaint is that the theater was not freezing cold. That is the thing I hated the most about going to the theater before, but I was actually looking forward to that this time. Unfortunately, they had the AC on low. I'm sure everyone else in the theater was comfortable, but I felt like my hands and feet were going to explode by the time we reached the car. This whole being-hot-while-pregnant thing is getting really annoying. PS - the movie was awesome.

Saturday, Travis had to work, so I stuck around the house and got a lot of much needed cleaning done around the house. All of our animals are shedding their winter coats, plus we had Marley with us all last week to play with Callaway and knock every last possible loose hair off his body onto my floor. The hair build-up was ridiculous and out of control. But now it is under control.

We also got a bunch of random things done around the house that I think seriously improve the look of our home, for not much money:
  • Hung a mirror above our TV in the living room;
  • Put together the baby swing;
  • Travis put new mulch in our garden and around all the trees in our yard;
  • Repaired the leaky kitchen sink for just $4;
  • Moved a bunch of our glassware into the cabinet above the sink to make room for baby feeding gear.
By Saturday night, I was sure I would never walk again. I fought through the sciatica all day to get as much done as possible. Getting up in the middle of the night to pee was a miserable experience. I think this sciatica can best be described as a cross between arthritis and a dislocated hip. Lovely, let me tell you.

Sunday, Travis had all day off from working. We slept in that morning and then ran some errands. First, we went to Barnes & Nobles to pick up a baby book, courtesy of my mother-in-law (for Mother's Day). I found this super cute one by Eric Carle, who I think I might be a little obsessed with. Travis browsed the electrician's books (very exciting) and then we headed further up the road to Babies R Us. I decided to go with the doctor's recommendation to try a belly bra and let me tell you I feel really cool wearing this thing. I can't tell you yet if it is helping. I do feel some relief, but the sciatic is still very much ever present.

After Babies R Us, we were off to my FAVORITE grocery store - HEB. They carry my favorite yogurt and roasted soy nuts in bulk. YUM! I told Travis that from here on out, I refuse to go grocery shopping without him. It is much easier to send him off to grab several items in the next aisle. It goes so much faster. Plus, he loads and unloads the majority of the grocery bags to and from the car. SO much easier on my back!

Sunday afternoon, I planted flowers in a hanging basket. I'll let you know how long they live for. Oh and I finally washed all the baby toys. Soon after Travis went off with Robert to play disk golf - his new favorite hobby. I didn't feel like sitting at home alone, so I went over to hang out with Ariel for the rest of the day. Bonus: she fed me!!! I had lots of snacks and then for dinner we had spaghetti using a family recipe that I have not had in forever. It was delicious.

When I got home, at dusk, Travis and I did a few last minute things in the nursery. I put away the dried baby toys and Travis moved the CD player into the nursery so we can play music for him at night. I figure if we want to do that while he is sleeping in our room for the first few weeks, we can just use the Playstation. Now we are just awaiting May 29th to go purchase the playard co-sleeper we want to use. I have a 15% off coupon that will really help out on this large purchase. Cross your fingers that Lil Wodie doesn't come before then!!

Friday, May 15, 2009

House Guest of the Week

Our friends Melinda and Kai went out of town for the week and left their dog Marley with us.


He's been keeping Callaway company.



Thursday, May 14, 2009

34 Weeks

I'm 34 weeks and absolutely tired of sciatica. I have so much I want to do and no energy or tolerance for pain left to work my way through the weak, agitated leg and swelling hands and feet. I think that this weekend I'm just going to tough it out one morning and get all the main stuff done in the nursery. Then maybe I won't feel so insanely guilty when I just flop onto the couch when I get home from work.

One of my bosses (I have two that I work with on a regular basis) is out of town for two and a half weeks starting today. When he left work yesterday, he said goodbye and "good luck in case I don't see you before the baby comes." Uh, he is supposed to be back on June 1st. I am so large, he thought I would have the baby before then. I understand that this kid could definitely come early, but 22 days early is really pushing the limit.

When I went in for my appointment this Monday, the doctor was measuring my belly when she says, "do you have a big baby in here, or what?" I don't know! You're the doctor! You tell me! I'm still measuring a week larger than expected. The doctor is not worried about it yet, so nothing is different at this point. I'm at +29 pounds and when I measured my belly circumference last night I measured 41.5 inches around. Sheesh. Travis likes to point out that I have surpassed his weight now.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Mother's Day

Happy belated Mother's Day to all the moms out there! I hope your Sunday was exactly the way you wanted it to be.

Mine was pretty good. Travis started the day off at home, just being lazy. Then we filled out a bunch of Thank You cards for all the gifts we got last weekend at the baby shower. There was no postponing that any longer!

We decided to spend the afternoon at the beach. I tried to shave my legs the night before in the shower. It was a no-go. I was giving myself contraction trying to bend over to reach my calves. I ended up with half of a shaved calf before I gave up. It looks awesome.

Sunday morning I noticed that my toe nails had grown out enough that my nail polish looked horrific. I asked my husband if he could help me out and he graciously agreed. I COULD NOT STOP LAUGHING. After Travis got through with the first foot he said, "it looks like a drunk Kindergartner painted your nails." LOL! Doesn't matter to me because from my view they look much better than they did before he had at 'em.

Chris and Alexa met us at our house and we drove down together. We stopped at Walmart on our way to pick up snacks and drinks. It was SUCH A NICE DAY. We were on the beach for about three hours and I applied sunscreen twice. Still got burnt. I have a cherry tomato for a belly. Actually, most of the redness is gone already, except for my flippin belly button.

After an hour or so, Rachel and Scott met up with us for a couple hours in the sun. Good times with good friends!

This kid is just TOO CUTE.

Happy family

Mouthful of cereal puffs

Belly to belly

Scott and the Gull

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Birthing Blitz

Saturday, Travis and I had an all day birthing class. It started at 9 in the morning, so we all were a little groggy first thing. The class started with informational videos and instruction from the nurse in a classroom setting. I felt a little bit guilty when the instructor said that she watched a bunch of us waddle into the building that morning and that we shouldn't be waddling that early in the morning. I wanted to scream, "I'm not waddling! I'm limping!" Stupid sciatic nerve.

Speaking of, I went to the chiropractor last night and told him about my fears of The Adjustor, so he didn't use it at all. He was able to do a little twist and get a pop out that way. Then he did some soft tissue massage that hurt a little bit, but nothing like the damage caused by The Adjustor. It feels slightly better this morning. I'm still trying to decided if it's worth it.

When I went into my doctor, she recommended using a heating pad and then a cold pack to ease the swelling around the nerve. Then use a belly belt to help take some of the pressure off my belt. The chiropractor wants me to go a step further and get this thing called a trochanter belt to help support my hips. LOL! I don't know if the cost is worth it. I only have a couple weeks left.

Back to the birthing class... After the informational portion, just before lunch, the nurse showed us some relaxation methods to use while I am in labor. We started by giving the "partners" a massage so they wouldn't feel left out from all the fun. When my dad asked me what I learned in this class, I told him that I found out Travis actually knows how to give a massage. I think that maybe after all these years he's been faking the fact that he sucks at back rubs. But now I know the truth!

We had an hour for lunch, so we went to this cute little French bistro. I'd been there once before with Rachel, but Travis had never been. I was very surprised when he actually liked the food. He's usually into more manly type places. Although I guess if you give him a good sandwich, he'll be happy anywhere. I told Travis that I felt really guilty about bringing back a cup of iced coffee to the class (you know, the whole limit your caffeine intake during pregnancy thing). That's when he informed me that most of the women had a cup of coffee with our morning snack during the class. Phew! I got out of that one!

We spent the afternoon watching birthing videos (YIKES) and touching up on c-sections and pain control. After watching those videos, I have absolutely no idea why anyone would want to have a baby WITHOUT an epidural. ALL of the births without pain control looked absolutely miserable to me. That epidural is the way to go. And I'm getting one as long as I don't have a super fast labor that leaves no time for drugs. If I am anything like my mother, that's not a "problem" I'll have.

We finished the class off with a tour of the hospital. I feel much better now that I know where everything is, and more importantly that Travis knows where everything is. I have a feeling that the next time I enter that hospital, I might not be fully aware of my surroundings. We also got to spend a few minutes at the nursery window staring at the teeny tiny babies. I could have stood there all day.

Now all we have left is the infant CPR/first aid class and we will be ready for Lil Wodie!

After the class, Travis and I went to Target to trade in the duplicate gift and pick up a couple more items for the nursery. Here's what we've got going on so far...


New boppy and bedding accessories. You can also see the little baby bath tub that we have absolutely no idea where we will store.


Pop Monkey crib bedding.


We put the rocking chair from Travis' mom in our bedroom for late night nursing sessions. We discovered that we might need a chair pad to put underneath because it doesn't rock very well on the carpet.

Monday, May 11, 2009

Tint? Check! Termites? Check!

The car tint has been replaced with legal tint and the termite situation is under control! Friday afternoon I left work early to have all these guys come over to take care of everything. The tint was replaced within half an hour. It's still dark, but now it's the legal limit. I plan to pick up my inspection sticker this week.

When I answered the door for the tint guy, he said, "Hi! I'm the tint guy! And you're pregnant!"

Yes I am! Thanks for noticing! Actually, that guy was pretty nice in the long haul.

I found a few termites in my house last weekend and freaked out because Terminix had just come for our annual inspection and gave us a clean bill of health. Turns out we don't have an infestation. The technician said it was most likely a swarm that flew directly under our house and came up through the hole where our plumbing enters the house. He said they should have all died when they went back into the ground because the chemical they used last year was the good stuff. I haven't seen anymore termites, so I'm leaning towards believing the guy. He did spray the opening with a kill-on-contact insecticide (that is safe for pets and pregnant moms), so no more will get inside the house.

The termite guy kind of freaked me out a little. He had that middle-aged-white-guy-serial-killer look to him. Although, he did have a younger guy helping him who was not quite as creepy. Anyhoo, they had to get into this little storage space to spray and it's where I keep my feminine products. When he was finished, he came out to the living room and says, "I had to get in underneath all your lady products, but don't worry, I put them all back. It doesn't look like you need those right now though. Oh and I don't think you need that pregnancy test. You look pretty pregnant to me!"

Thanks for the confirmation, buddy. I bought a box that had two prego tests in it and the other test is still sitting unused in our cabinet. I love having five-minute conversations with creepy strangers in my house about my tampons and pregnancy tests. Makes me feel all warm and fuzzy inside.

Friday, May 8, 2009

Dilemma of the Hour

For the past month or so, I have started to get some of the side effects of pregnancy that I have read about in all the books and even heard a few friends deal with themselves. Luckily, thus far, they have only been an occasional problem. Now it seems these problems are here to stay.

The first is swelling of the hands and feet. I used to only get it at night, but now it is present ALL THE TIME. This means no more wedding rings. =( If I could walk around all day carrying little baggies of ice, I would.

The second is a pinched sciatic nerve. I used to have good days where I completely forgot about this pain, but then I would have a bad afternoon/evening where the pain was constant. The good thing about those days is it went away after a night of sleep. The sleep trick works no longer. I started having sciatic pain Wednesday afternoon and it has not gone away since.

Here's the dilemma of the hour: When I go to the chiropractor now, he cannot twist me at the abdomen to relieve this pinched nerve (left side only). That means he has to use a mini-jackhammer, which he calls The Adjuster [insert a menacing jingle here], to move my vertebrae. My decision is this: Am I willing to endure the pain of 15 minutes with The Adjuster and three days of bruising and pain in the aftermath for possibly weeks of relief from the sciatica?

My appointment is set for Monday afternoon. At this rate, I am willing to meet with The Adjuster.

Thursday, May 7, 2009

33 Weeks

Who's bloated? I am, I am! Who's uncomfortable? I am, I am! Who's exhausted ALL the time? I am, I am! Seriously, I am getting to "that point" where the idea of pushing out a bowling ball sounds more appealing than having to walk around one more day with a pinch in my lower back and a medicine ball under my shirt. Or having to sleep another night on MY SIDE. I CANNOT wait until I can sleep on my back. Can I do that the second I have the baby? Because if so, I'm sleeping on my back the entire stay in the hospital to make up for all this side-sleeping I've been forced into.

I think it's interesting how the human body seems to prepare women for birth in this way. I can't think of a better way to get someone excited about the pains of birth than giving them the knowledge that relief is at the end of the tunnel. Problem is, I still have around seven weeks left until this guy should come out. It could happen in three weeks, but I'd like him to stay in the cooker until he's done, if you know what I mean.

Travis and I went up to Babies R Us to pick up our gift from Ariel, Robert, Alex and my Dad. Crib bedding! I threw it all in the washer the second we got home, but it won't all be dry until tonight. The rational side of me says to wait to put the bedding in the crib because cat hair will accumulate. The mommy side of me wants to run home right this second and put the bedding on immediately. We keep the door shut to the nursery, but I still foresee cat and dog hair accumulation being an issue.

Alexa hooked us up with a 15% off coupon at Babies R Us, so we were able to get $20 off the purchase of the bedding. SCORE! While we were there, we picked up a few random items that I really wanted to have BEFORE the baby is born. Travis and I sat in the nursery for a little while last night and looked at the remaining items that need a home. We discussed a few options, but I am still waiting to find a place to keep half this stuff.

The strollers for instance. Where do I keep those? There is no room in the nursery. It would probably be covered in spiderwebs if we kept them in the garage. I'm sure our cats would find it a suitable sleeping spot if it was left anywhere else in the house. That leaves the trunk of my car. But then where will I put my groceries when I go shopping?! We decided the only solution is to buy a bigger house. Too bad. Cuz that's not happening for a while. I just need to accept the fact that I will have a baby covered in cat and dog hair at all times. AWESOME.

Yesterday I had some guy I don't know at work ask me if I get a hard time at the grocery store. Not understanding where he was going with this, I asked him what he meant. "Do people ever accuse you of stealing a watermelon?" Sheesh.

I'm tired. I think I'm going to go home and lay down ALL evening. Oh wait, after I pick up the Mother's Day gift I ordered for our moms and put the bedding on the crib. I'm still tired...

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Updates

I had to post this photo from the baby shower this past Saturday. It makes me laugh. Somehow, Nadya is due only five days after me. Psh. How is that possible?! Did anyone see the photos of pregnant actress Bridget Moynahan and her torpedo belly? Hmmm...




Another photo I had to put up. Do you see the INSANE amount of stuff we got at the baby shower? It took four washer loads to get all the clothes, blankets, bibs, towels, etc. washed. I still haven't found a home for everything. Some of it will have to go out into the garage for a few months as it is stuff Lil Wodie won't be able to use until he can hold his head up.

THANKS AGAIN EVERYONE!!!


Travis and I got two Jumperoos and we plan to exchange one at Target on Saturday after our birthing class. YAY Birthing Class! YAY baby stuff! While we are there we plan to pick up a few items for further decorating the nursery. I can't wait!



Here's a better picture of Alex and his date Alexa. They are the two on the end. Unfortunately, my dad didn't get a great photo of the two of them together.


Big pimpin' in his pink vest and tie. So cute!



As for the window tint situation... I got a call yesterday from the tint guy. I was worried that they wouldn't replace the tint without a fight. I thought for sure they'd just tear it off and leave it that way. Gratefully, he said on his own that he will be replacing it for the darkest legal tint, which is a 24% difference from what I currently have. Factory tint. HA. He's coming out to our house Friday afternoon at the same time as Terminix.

Oh yes, Terminix. We got our house treated for termites last year around this time. But when they came back this year (just two weeks ago), they gave our house a clean bill of house and said we didn't need to treat. Then I got a certificate in the mail that said if we saw any signs of termites, they would spray for free because that is included in our annual fee. Well, sure enough, I was in the bathroom the other night and two termites were crawling around on the floor.

I have a feeling that Terminix didn't feel like inspecting under our house in the 18-inch space, so they just passed it as clear. I guess there's always the possibility that they built a home and all their mud tunnels up into my house in the two weeks between Sunday and Terminix's inspection a couple weeks ago.

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Alex Goes to Prom

My brother Alex is a junior in high school this year. He completes the school year in June and begins his senior and final year this fall. I just CANNOT believe how fast he is growing up. I was nine when he was born, so I essentially remember his entire life. I also spent a few years while I was in high school and my first two years of college taking care of Alex - making sure he got ready for school and was fed and what not.

I was really upset when I had to leave for Texas because I knew I was going to miss so much of Alex's life. He runs in track and cross country and apparently he's one of the better runners in the state and has been offered to run at a couple colleges. So far its only been small colleges without scholarships, but he's hoping for more offers next year.

Alex has played in the school band since he was in middle school. When he does the marching band (for football), he plays the trumpet. But when it's pep band (for basketball), he plays the tuba. I am yet to see that boy work a tuba. I'd say he's about six foot tall and most likely ways less than I did pre-pregnancy, maybe around 100 pounds? He's a thin guy. I can only imagine what he looks like with a tuba. Oh and he loves to rock out on the guitar and piano when he jams with his friends. They had a garage band put together for a couple years, but that sort of fizzled out when all the guys got to busy with life.

The kid also has brains. He has a 4.0 average (on a 4.0 scale) and he just scored a 31 (out of 36) on his ACT. I think it's amazing how he has been able to have so many after school activities and STILL keep up his grades. I barely did any activities in high school and barely scraped by with a B average. He's smart and I'm damn proud of him.

Anyways, a few months ago, my dad mentioned that the preparations for Prom were coming up. He helped setting up Post Prom during my four years in high school and for the additional three years that Ariel was there. I guess he decided to help out again now that Alex is in high school. I can't believe it's time for my little brother to go to PROM!!

When I brought it up to him initially, he said he wasn't going to go. I told him he was crazy. He HAD to go. It's Prom! So, he found a friend/girl to go with and they got a group of friends to go together. Alex had no clue what was involved in getting ready for Prom and I think it stressed him out a little. I had to explain to him the small stuff, like you should get a tux vest that matches your date's dress. Turns out, she had a pink dress. Teehee.

Cool Man Alex


She's the brunette on the right end.
I hope to get non-cell-phone pictures from my dad soon.

Funny part? His date's name was Alexa. Alex and Alexa. LOL! He sent me this little photo from the actual Prom dinner. I know it's blurry, but it brings back so many memories!



I tried talking with Alex last night about how everything went, but when I got home our connection was bad. I'll have to get more details later. It sounds like he had a great time! He even said he was "glad he went". ME TOO! He said Prom was a blast and HE EVEN DANCED. Hahaha! I can't imagine that at all.

After Prom, they always have what is called Post-Prom which is an after party put on by the parents. This year it was at the bowling alley where they have black light bowling, pool, and a variety of other activities. Plus, the parents set up game stations. All of this and the kids HAD to stay until 3 in the morning. Holy crap! That's late! Alex said he had more fun at Prom because he was so tired by the time he got to Post Prom.

The purpose of Post-Prom is to keep the kids out of drinking and driving after Prom. That's why they are not allowed to leave until 3am. THEN, they all got up at 8am to head to Six Flags for the day. LOL! I remember those days. I totally can't do that anymore. Ah, high school. My little brother is growing up!

Monday, May 4, 2009

DMB

Oh Dave, how I love thee. Well, actually, not as much in concert as I thought I would. Friday night, Travis and I went for our planned Babymoon to see Dave Matthews Band in concert. Travis has started getting off work at 4 on Fridays, so we got out of the house by a record breaking 5:15pm. Unfortunately, the venue is an hour and a half a way in good traffic and the show was supposed to start at 7.
Since the show was north of Houston, that meant we got to drive through the evening rush hour and IT WAS HORRIBLE. I get car sick very easily - pregnant or not. The ride was miserable. I had the seat all the way back and I decided to keep it a secret that I had to pee like a race horse so Travis wouldn't flip out anymore than he already was in his road-rage stricken state.
We pulled into the line of backed up traffic at our exit at exactly 7pm. After the teenage girl in front of us let in the 15th car in front of her and then seeing a sign that said we had another mile and a half until our actual exiting of the highway, Travis floored it around more than three quarters of the cars before merging back into the exit lane. Despite his jerky movements, I think it was a good move.
When we got to the parking lot, it looked like we weren't the only people who were late for the show. Luckily, they had a couple other random bands play before DMB, so we were able to walk the three miles to the pavilion and wait in the line to have our bags and bodies checked for weapons, alcohol, drugs and food. Sheesh. Then we had to check our camera. =( That was really scary. I was a little bummed I couldn't bring it in, but I was more worried about someone stealing it while we were inside (despite it being watched over by two employees).
Oh and I was also 50% sure that I would forget to get the camera on my way out. Usually Travis is the one to remember important things like that, but since I knew he would be drinking a few beers I worried about the quality of his memory for the evening. As a precaution I set my phone alarm as a reminder. We could have walked it back to the car, but that took FOREVER in my prego state. I know Travis probably could have jogged back in half the time. It's just that we were already late and I didn't want to be sitting so far back that Dave looked like an ant.
Speaking of ants, I think I got bit by one at the concert. It was an outdoor venue, and we had lawn seats. That means we sat behind all the people who paid for a covered seat for half the price because we have to sit in the grass. I thought it was a mosquito bite, but when my calf swelled into a welt that made it look like I got whipped with a softball I decided it might be something else. Clarissa mentioned at the baby shower that maybe it was an ant and I was reminded of my hyper-sensitivity to fire ants. They are nasty little buggers that usually leave my ankles swollen to the size of an apple with just two bites. It's looking a lot better today. I think the 4-inch welt has shrunken to about a 2-inch welt.
Anyhoo, Travis and I found a nice spot in the lawn, center stage to lay out our blanket. We were thinking about renting a chair that is made for the incline of the lawn, but I'm glad we waited. As soon as the concert started EVERYONE stood up. I ended up standing up and sitting back down throughout the whole show. Sitting for the five-minute solos and standing for all the songs we knew. They really are more of what I would call a jam band. I think if I were at a bar or even at a coffee shop, that is the type of music I would want playing. But to see them in concert where they are the main event wasn't as entertaining.
Travis and I spent half the show talking and laughing about the other people while listening to the electric violin or soprano sax jammin in the background. Seriously, there were some funny people there. Half the guests were wearing some form of tie-dyed material (shirts, skirts, dresses, etc). Plus, I was completely sober, so it was entertaining to watch the drunk people stumbling around on that sloped lawn and the guys who were most definitely tripping on Ecstasy jumping around like mad men. Oh and the POT SMOKING. Good lord. There must have been a lot of people with joints hidden in their butt cracks on their way through security, cuz there was a lot of pot smoking. I'm hoping one night of secondhand exposure doesn't damn my unborn child to a life of pot-headedness.
Travis imbibed a few $10 beers, while I stuck with my $5 bottle of water and $5 bucket of Pepsi. Yes, I know, pot and caffeine all in one night. It kept Lil Wodie amazingly level. Finishing the night off with the purchase of a $35 t-shirt made for an expensive evening, but it was worth it. Travis and I got to spend our last hurrah seeing a band that I have wanted to see for years. It was even worth the fact that I had to have another snack around midnight because we didn't get home and into bed until almost 1 in the morning. I was TIRED. Thank goodness for lazy Saturday mornings...

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Showered with Gifts

First off, to anyone who has sent a gift or gave us a gift at the shower: THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU.

Second, to Alexa and Chris: Thank you so much for putting together this baby shower for Travis and I. The food was awesome and all the gifts are wonderful. THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU!


Chris and Alexa put together a baby-survival tool belt for the daddy-to-be. It came complete with diapers, Butt Paste, booger bulb, bottles, formula-to-go and toys. Oh and I can't forget the goggles for any messy diaper changes in his future.

I cannot even begin to describe how special that baby shower made me feel. Over 30 people made it to the party. Alexa did a great job of setting up the house and yard so that it never felt over crowded (the spacious home helped out). There were appetizers, punch and beer for the beginning of the party and a gourmet burger bar for the meal (thanks for grilling, Chris!).

I am so ecstatic that so many people were able to come, but I have found that the problem with large parties like that is that you can never make it around to have a good conversation with everyone. I keep thinking back to all the people that were there and how I didn't get a serious talk in with them. Its crazy.

Alexa pulled together a couple funny games. One was the melted candy in the diaper game. Just like last week, Nadya had to stand this one out - and leave the area. LOL! Then Alexa brought out beer in some baby bottles for the guys to have a beer bottle chugging contest. It's hard to tell who one for sure because the guys were biting the nipples to make the flow faster and I think the "winner", Jeremy, unscrewed the nipple and drank his remaining beer in one gulp. Ha! It was still funny to watch guys drinking out of baby bottles. Josh was milking his like a cow because he insisted it made the flow faster.

Chris chug-a-luggin

Travis threw on the goggles for that diaper

After the games, Rachel and Alexa carried out the presents for Travis and I to open on the back patio. While we opened our gifts, everyone had a slice of the flippin adorable cake the Rachel made. Travis and I sort of have a jungle theme planned for the nursery. And look! She welcomed Lil Wodie! =D


Alexa made this really awesome diaper cake. I guess she had some leftover diapers and an extra blanket, hence the "flower pot" in front. Oh and the monkey on top giggles like a child. It makes me laugh every time I push the button on his toes.



I'd like to report that I have been abdominal pain free for two full days now. I didn't have any problems during the shower - not even very many Braxton Hicks contractions!


Ok, are you ready for this? This isn't even all the gifts we received. There are more boxes that didn't fit into the shot.


Did I mention THANK YOU???

Saturday, May 2, 2009

Mo' Problems

So guess what? I took the Murano in to get the State Inspection and it FAILED. FAILED! I swear I've had more problems with this 2006 Nissan than I ever did with the 2001 Dodge Neon I used to have. At least with the Neon my monthly payments were half what they are now so all those random repairs were easier to deal with.

Want to know why the Murano failed? BECAUSE THE TINT IS TOO DARK. Oh and you know that little strip of tint that usually lines the top few inches of your windshield? Well mine goes about two inches below the limit line. So that will need to be trimmed too. Luckily he said that only the tint needs to be removed/replaced on the front two windows, so we don't have to mess with the whole car.

I've had that vehicle for a little over a year. This is the first inspection I've had to do since I bought it. The first one was done by the dealership and they passed it. Probably because they didn't want to sell us a car only to have it fail the state required inspection. The dealer assured us that the windows had factory tint. Well, it's catching up to them now because I'm not paying to have the tint fixed on a vehicle that they sold me.

After the inspector told me it had failed, I called the dealership to tell them they needed to fix this problem. The guy in the Service Department wasn't a whole lot of help. He told me I could set up an appointment with their tint guy, but I would have to pay for it. I asked him how he thought he could make me do that. Is it legal for them to sell me a car that won't pass inspection? That's when he forwarded me to the Sales Manager.

The Sales Manager was very easy going and said, "just talk to So-in-so (not who I had been talking with minutes before) in the Service Department and have him set up an appointment with the tint guy". I asked him if that would be free of charge and he said yes. Of course, I'm an idiot and didn't get that Sales Manager's name because I didn't know there was more than one sales manager.

I called the Service Department back and got the same guy I had been talking to before. I asked for So-in-so, but he was with a customer so he took a message. When So-in-so hadn't called me back after an hour, which put us at thirty minutes before their closing time, I called them back. So-in-so answered the phone and knew nothing of my problem. I explained everything over again and he said that he had to have the tint guy call me to set up an appointment because he is contracted in and he goes to the customer. So-in-so did say it would be free of charge.

I will confirm again that this fix will be free when I talk to the tint guy because EVERYONE needs to know I'm NOT paying for this. I am yet to discuss with anyone if they will be replacing the tint with a lighter tint. They better be because I paid for a car WITH tint. It does help that the tint guy comes to me because it is hard for Travis and I to get the Murano to the dealership. It's north of where we live, but we both work south of where we live. Which means we have to rush up there after work the night before to drop it off, then we carpool to work the next day. Not exactly an easy process.

The added stressor here is that I have 15 days from the date of the failed inspection to get this fixed and back in to them to receive my sticker without additional charges. Yup, I had to pay for a failed inspection. Although, the way I see it is if the dealership does not take care of this in a reasonable amount of time THEY are inspecting my car for free. This is ridiculous and this pregnant lady is tired of it.

Friday, May 1, 2009

Pain in my Pelvis

That's what this kid has been lately - a pain in my pelvis. I got so bad Wednesday night that I was unable to lay down and fall asleep. Just the prospect of having to bend at the waist was enough to deter me for a couple hours. I tried Tylenol, sitting on all fours, the birthing ball, heck I even tried sitting on the toilet to see if that might relieve the problem. Unfortunately, nothing helped. It wasn't until I was completely exhausted and willing to lay down on this pain in my lower right abdomen that I finally found a position where it didn't hurt.

But each time I tried to roll over in the middle of the night, the pain would wake me up and I would decide not to roll over. That means I woke up with one hell of a crick in my neck yesterday morning! The pain was still present, but not quite as mean as it had been. I slowly got ready for work and then thought gas relief! Maybe it's gas? During the ride to work, the pain went away. So I was beginning to think maybe it was gas. But after I got out of my car and started walking around at work, the pain came back. It was excruciating and all I wanted to do was lay down, so I took a sick day from work.

I called the doctor's office to make an appointment and it was set for 3pm. They told me to take it easy in the meantime, so I headed home for my couch. After an hour, I got a call back from the doctor asking me to come in at 1:45. That was no problem since I was already home for the day. I got into the office a little early (since I had nothing else to do) and they got me in pretty quick.

I ended up seeing the nurse practitioner (NP) instead of my doctor, but I had seen her before and I like her. She ran a test to see if there was any fetal fibronectin present. If there is, then that means I am going into prelabor that would need to be stopped in the hospital. The doctor's office never called with the results, so I'm assuming no one was alarmed enough to think I needed to hear them. The pain came and went as the day progressed, but nothing as bad as it had been that morning or Wednesday night.

The NP told me during the visit to drink plenty of fluids, as dehydration can cause contractions. I knew this already and have been chugging water like nobody's business since Sunday because of the Braxton Hicks contractions that I have been having.

The NP asked how the fetal movement was - again I scoffed and said he's plenty strong, we don't have to worry about that. She said that was another possibility. The baby is at almost full strength now and the amniotic fluid is starting to disappear as the baby takes more space in the womb. That means less cushioning for all the blows. She said there is a chance that the baby is putting pressure on something, like an organ or tissue or my pelvis, causing this pain.

Has anyone read the Twilight books? The character Renesme keeps popping into my head. (If you haven't read the final book, but want to, I wouldn't recommend looking up who this character is.)

I am feeling much better today and I'm hoping this keeps up. Travis and I have plans to go to the Dave Matthews Band concert tonight and then OUR BABY SHOWER IS TOMORROW!! Did I mention how excited for that I am???