17 December 2007

it's a bloggy 'oliday for me, bert

I know I’m not the most faithful, loyal or regular blogger out there; not by a long shot. But, I do love my blog and feel I have made some very real, wonderful friends through it. And I am by NO means going anywhere, I promise. However, I am an exahusted 36 weeks pregnant and feeling it more each day. My body is aching badly (I have a severely painful pelvis, which we believe is thanks to my daughter’s large size during my pregnancy with her) and I am feeling larger by the day (ha…wonder why!). The real fun though is that the holidays are stressful enough without adding extra stress, and that’s exactly what’s happened over the weekend. Big time. And I am in need of reprieve. Not just an outlet, but a reprieve of much deeper levels; I am planning to hibernate the rest of my pregnancy (as much as one can hibernate in the midst of holiday gatherings and slews of doctors/midwives/specialists/therapist appointments!).

I will stop by your blogs and read, even comment perhaps, but unless something just must be said, I don’t believe I will be blogging until I announce my little boy’s birth. So, though I may be back in a mere two weeks to share that news, it could be four, and I know it’s kind of silly to even tell you I’m taking a break since I tend to easily go a few weeks at a time anyway (sorry I’m such a slacker, ladies!) For now just I need as much “down time” as I can get—and very little is available. And, I wanted you to know where I plan to be.

That said, I want to ask you to pray for me and my family right now. I am very much in need of it (no doubt more so because I have the pregnant hormones raging in this body!). I have to tell you that a little while back when the going got tough several of you said you were praying for me, and I know other friends were as well…and I began to do so much better right away. I could feel the prayers and felt myself being lifted to the throne of grace. I thank you for that. I know I will get through this, and thank you for being my friends, each one of you.

I hope you all have a wonderful Christmas and I will “see” you in the new year!!

11 December 2007

3am randomness

I am getting so very, very tired of these 3am wake ups. I know I'm just pregnant, I know there aren't that many weeks left, but I don't even have anyone waking me up (nursing babies and children in need at least justify it)! It's now 4am, I've been awake for nearly an hour, my kids are all sleeping (even the little guy in utero), my husband is nearly snoring, and my body is aching. UGH. Comfort usually arrives around the time the alarm goes off, after I've been up for a while and finally gone back to sleep. Comfort also comes after lunch when I am in desparate, desparate need of a nap, barely peeling my eyes open and attempting to convince my daughter that she, too, is exhuasted (she no longer naps every day). But at 3 and 4am? Nah. Sleep cometh not and this poor body is wearing out. My mom likes to say, "Well, you're not 25 anymore." No kidding -- I'm starting to understand what she's talking about! Pregnancy in my 30s is far more taxing than the ones in my 20s.

So, after laying in bed a while, I opted for some raisin bran with real milk. In our house, real milk is just not a regular purchase considering the allergies my daughter has. So, while pregnant, I've tried to get it about once a month or so. I'll do soy milk in certain cereals, but it's not really my thing. I had two bowls of the raisin bran. I so love real milk in cereal. Mmmm. My all time favorite is plain Cheerios with 2% milk. It absorbs right, it's cold enough and it is so perfect I often have two very large bowls (as in, these days, because I know it's a rare comodity in our home!!). Now, the middle of the night snack is taken care of, and I'm perusing online out of sheer boredom. Perhaps sleep will come soon. That milk might help it along...oh, I'm hoping it does!

To encourage the drowsy state I hope to be visiting very soon, I'm off to play a bit of Alchemy, a most addicting game. I like the free web version of it best, so that makes it very available and I've played it far more than I will admit in the last couple of weeks.

10 December 2007

stages in life

I read two different blogs that both carry the name, "My Blog". One is a young, single author whose books I've enjoyed. The other is a married lady who is expecting her 2nd baby just before I am due.

I use Bloglines; a few weeks ago, one of the two My Blogs had a new entry to read. I clicked it, but before opening the actual link, I scanned the Bloglines view and saw the title: "I'm Engaged!" It says something about where you are in life when you begin reading and feel completely startled when it's not the pregnant mother saying her baby is engaged, but rather the single author who is planning a wedding!!

30 November 2007

in the majority

Back in the day, long, long ago (meaning before I had children), I had an abdominal surgery for some health problems and it left a scar like a c-section would. As of this pregnancy . . . my third pregnancy . . . I am beginning to get "real" stretch marks for the first time in my life, on the far right side of my scar. I have never had the stretch marks that so many women talk of.

Sometime after Miss C was born, I did discover some very tiny, faint ones--also near the scar--but they could hardly be seen (thin and squiggly and barely there) and I knew they did not "qualify" in many women's eyes. I've never been bothered by my lack of stretch marks, that's for sure! But this new phenomenon on my lower belly is definitely not thin or squiggly...it's wide and silver and looks like it should have hurt to create itself. Oi! I think I'll blame it on the fact that my favorite sugar scrub is no longer for sale at Bath & Body Works. Yeah--it's all their fault! I used it lovingly on my belly the last two pregnancies and had to find a substitute this time around. No fair. Maybe I should file a formal complaint. hahaha!

Now, to balance the lack of stretch marks on my belly for so long, I will say that there were definite "sunshine" stretch marks on certain body parts used after a baby is born--I make lots and lots and LOTS of milk (twins? triplets? bring 'em on, I can feed them easy!) and go from an A to a DD once my milk comes in . . . yes, you read that right. And they carry a definite set of stretch marks. Fortunately, once I'm through nursing, the drastic decrease in size disguises the marks. As they grow during the next pregnancy, I see them again and am amazed that I'd forgotten just how stretched they get!

All that said, I have just over six weeks left. Six long, exhausting weeks. For the first time, I have joined the ranks of women who are "done" and "ready" for the baby to come. I have never felt this way. In the past, I've relished each day of my pregnancy. This time, I'm so tired, so emotional, so need-to-be-busy with housework and kids that all I want is my sweet boy in my arms to snuggle, hold, nurse, and love.

Yes, I'm in the majority now. I am impatient for my child to be born and I have real-woman stretch marks.

22 November 2007

happy thanksgiving

Thanksgiving has always, always been my favorite holiday.

I love taking the time to reflect on what I am thankful for, and to spend it with the family I love so dearly. I love that there is no distraction of "what did I get" as at Christmas, yet I can just as easily be thankful for my Lord and Savior. I love the simplicity of sitting and enjoying my family, playing games, visiting, and eating. And I love the Macy's Thanksgiving Parade (though I'm not so fond of the unfamily-friendly commercials that pop up). And there are also the wonderful, warm memories of past Thanksgivings.

This year especially, I am thankful for my new little boy, Baby J, almost ready to join us on the "outside". I am thankful for my husband who is so kind and loving and takes such good care of me and our children. I'm thankful that my parents are doing particularly well this year, both in health and in practical matters.

Even on the hardest days of the year in our home--those days when I feel like wringing soemone's neck!--I am thankful that I can look at my sweet (or not as the case may be) children and feel love ready to overflow and thankfulness for each little person. The Lord put these little people in our lives intentionally...and made them exactly who they are, intentionally.

Something practical I'm feeling thankful for is the fact that our Thanksgiving meal with be smaller this year, simpler. Only my parents and brother will join us this time. I am too exhausted to have a crowd or make a large meal. We're having a prepurchased Roasted Turkey Breast (from Honey Baked Ham, thank you very much!), and my mom will be here in a while to help make some sides to go with it. My biggest effort was making a large batch of our most favorite pumpkin muffins (in lieu of a pie this year b/c a dairy free pumpkin pie is some serious hard work!). I did that early this morning and plan to take it easy from here on out (as in eating the muffins and drinking fully caffeinated coffee!).


At school, Little B had a large sheet to fill out:
I Am Thankful
for God/Jeasas/holy Spirit

His heart is definitely in the right place (and he refuses to add to this large, empty page to add anything about family....hhhmmm).


To each one of you, I pray you have a wonderful, thankful Thanksgiving this year!

(Now, back to my regularly scheduled parade...)

21 November 2007

winning streak

I'm not normally one of those people who wins everything--or much at all, really. But, twice now in one week's time I've won something!

First, last week at the PTO (Parent Teacher Organization) meeting, I won the door prize for a school shirt--something I won't be able to wear for several months yet, but it's a great girly design and will be fun come spring!

Then, today dcrmom of Musings of a Housewife told me I'd won some delicious chocolate from her review blog. And since I have craved--and I do mean, CRAVED--chocolate this pregnancy from early on, I am beside myself!

Now, I'm waiting to see if there's a third win waiting out there for me...

08 November 2007

what IS that smell?

Last night, I needed to go into the garage to go to my van to get some library books I had waiting to be returned (the extra-long winded version is that my husband planned to go return them and get one I had on held for me, but it ultimately got too late). Anyhow, opening the garage door gave me some serious wiff of a foul odor. Opening the van door, whose window was partway down, thank goodness, gave me the same foul odor. Really, "raunchy" is a kind term. I am telling you it stunk BAD.

I could not detect the source, nor did I have the stomach to try to find it. I asked my husband to look into it. He glanced around the garage and suggested the bags of cement he bought over the weekend as perhaps having an odor, but apparently it didn't bother him nearly as bad as it did me.

This morning, the stink was stronger. I left one garage door open (we have 2 separate doors) and hoped it would help. I was beginning to believe something had crawled in there and died. The van smelled worse, too. Ugh. The laundry room was beginning to catch the scent and let me tell you I was NOT having my house smell like this rot.

I had the luxury of going back to bed this morning for a while since Miss C was still soundly asleep. This was especially nice since I'd been up for nearly 2 hours in the night for absolutely no reason. When we got up, I was contemplating the fact that I would need to have some vague idea of what to do for dinner because that meal always sneaks up on me and I simply loathe it right now (can we say return of 1st trimester food aversions?). I recalled having purchased a fryer chicken on Sunday and went to look for it, hoping that perhaps I could roast it which my family enjoys.

No chicken in the fridge. I looked again, but I had just emptied the "extras" out since trash ran this morning and I knew it was not there. I pondered this. For all of one minute. Did I change my mind and not buy it? No. . .

I charged to the garage, opened the back of the van and lo and behold the smell I encountered nearly took my breath away. Nasty. I had to hold my breath! The headless little chicken was tucked next to the stroller and almost covered by a blanket I keep back there. Somehow, I did not see it the other day when I put my groceries away.

I can tell you our cooler weather kept it from becoming a problem sooner, but oh my goodness. I am so glad I was not in a rush to get out the door when I found it. I left the back of the van open for a few hours and febreezed the inside before I left later. And the chicken? Three or four plastic bags later it is in my freezer...the trash had already run a few hours before.

GRROOOOSSSS!!!

31 October 2007

the cow in our bathroom

We have one of those tubs that has jets. The tub is directly between the shower and the small "water closet" with the toilet. Therefore the vent for the motor to the jets is located beneath the toilet paper roll. This has never been particularly significant to me before now.

What I have failed to blog on recently is my daughter's self-potty training this past month. I have to remind her sometimes, and she still has accidents sometimes, but for the most part she's got it down and I commend her for it. I've been duly impressed and had held off for a while. (I actually chased her around with a diaper for a while as she insisted on trying to go potty before I was ready to let her since we had that Disney trip planned! hahaha!) I'm a firm believer in not making it a lot of work for myself. Either they get it or they don't. She gets it. Thank goodness!

Being pregnant, I am very susceptible to the power of suggestion, particularly if a bathroom is involved (or chocolate, but maybe that's not pregnancy-related). If Miss C must use the potty (even if it's the fourth trip in an hour), the odds are pretty high that mommy will likely need to go immediately after her. And while I have my turn I help pull up her jeans and such. Being a typically small room, she stands barely inside the doorway and has become a huge fan of the aforementioned vent.

Once she is redressed, she sits at the vent, peering into the small metal slats, telling me there is a cow inside. We both have to moo. I tried many other animals much to her delight, but in the end she is adamant that there is indeed a cow.

And here I thought cows lived on farms. But apparently, we have one living in our bathroom.

30 October 2007

11 weeks left

How many months pregnant am I? I hate that question. I like weeks. It's easy to count either direction. At the moment, I am 29 weeks pregnant (and one day, to be technical about it) and most definitely feeling that I've reached the third trimester. Unlike my first pregnancy during which I had a picture taken every single week to compare the belly growth, I've been far more random and distinctly sparse about it this time around. Last night, I decided to get a specific belly shot to share with you.

I give you the belly that looks more like a bowling ball under my shirt:

29 October 2007

memories

All the talk about my husband’s grandparents has given me pause to remember my own. I knew three of them, as my mom’s father died when she was still a teenager. Her mom lived alone, cross-country from us, and our visits were never quite often enough. She always returned my letters, and sent news of various family members. I loved that lady dearly though and after her death a few years ago many of my aunts and uncles (my mom was 10th of 11 kids with an endless supply of long-distance relatives that issued forth from them) spoke of how often she recalled a certain long visit I made with her. I spent a couple weeks basking in her quiet home after a long illness. We could chat or just be still. It didn’t matter. She never drove, and we walked or caught the bus any place we needed to go—the mall, the beach, the grocery store, the travel agency to confirm my flight home. I believe those weeks gave us something very special and while we did not have the luxury of frequent visits, we shared the closeness of hearts.

My father’s parents were as completely different from my mother’s as could be imagined. They lived on a farm in Kentucky, and were rife with silliness and loudness, more boisterous than calm, a true farmer’s life abounding in their home. Large meals, constant chatter, long gravel driveway and white farmhouse with a red roof. My aunt and cousin both lived on the property, and solitude was never to be found. My Papaw died when I was a freshman in High School, Mamaw the first year I was married. One of my favorite memories of going to visit was playing “Ten Fingers” for the last few miles of the trip. At some point, my dad would tell us to “put up ten fingers”, and eagerly, our palms would stretch open, taut with excitement. As we passed various land marks down the country road to their farm, he would say, “When we cross a bridge, take one down”, “When we go around a REALLY sharp turn, take one down”, “When you see a pond on the left, take one down”, and so on. Our fingers readily folded down, anxious for the next landmark. The anticipation would really build when we took one down for a gravel driveway, another pond, and finally, the engine turning off. By then, doors would be bursting open from both the car and the house, voices raised in the thrill of arrival and arms tangled in hugs.

When my Mamaw died, my parents were already with her, having stayed by her side in the last days. My husband, brother and I drove up for the funeral. As we neared the country road, I felt a sharp sense of loss that came with knowing the welcome would be far different than any before. And our finger game felt obviously absent from the end of our drive (my fingers seemed to be waiting for directions of their own accord). When I spoke of this, my younger brother, still in High School, was driving the final stretch. And he told me to put up ten fingers. . .

25 October 2007

check it out

I'm a cloth diaper momma. Yup. I really am. (Well, truthfully, my cloth diapering days are on hold since Miss C outgrew hers in early summer and we were too close to potty training to re-invest at that point--but that's not really the point here, now is it?) And, I was invited to be a contributor over at a cool blog called The Diaper Chronicles. Which at long last I've done. So, if you are at all remotely curious or fascinated (or even if you're not!) by cloth diapers, go check it out! Just to make me feel special and important and famous, go have a look-see at my blog-name on a different site. Okay? Okay.

What are you still here for!?

19 October 2007

tot spa?

Don't do major things on the tail of emotional weeks. I mean, really. I just did something today that I'd been contemplating for a long, long time. I just got over being very sick and, as my previous post mentioned, having a rough month in general.

But TODAY, on the tails of all that, after Miss C's bath, I decided to cut her hair. I've contemplated paying someone versus doing it myself to save money for months. Now I'm not sure if I will be paying someone anyway. Halfway through, I started shaking, wondering what I'd done. Honestly, I like the length the more I look at it, even though it's a little shorter than I'd planned. I just don't know how good of a job it is, as it seems uneven. I think I know what I did wrong, but when it happened, the lollipop had just been finished and the wiggling had commenced. She was actually a great sport considering she is anti-bow, anti-brushing, etc.

Yes, I cried when I told my husand. He wasn't bothered, and just said if it's bad we'll take her to get it fixed. He also reminded me that it might be just fine like it is. He's very good to me (as I've mentioned before).

So, you be the judge. Just how awful is it? (In my opinion, it seems too long on the left, but when it got too short on the right, I liked the effect...I just didn't duplicate it correctly since the wiggling skewered my perception of it.)

Before:



After:





And while I'm digging into my pictures for October, it reminds me that I forgot to post about a little adventure Miss C had, all on her own. It was the night before my anniversary, and I left her in my room with Baby Einstien in the DVD player -- Little B was in bed and I was making myself a quick, late bite to eat (my husband was not home just yet, having worked late). I saw her head peek around the corner of the bedroom door which meant she was not on the bed anymore, so I felt strongly compelled to check on her. She gets into things, but usually it's nothing too significant. I had my bathroom lights out to prevent curiousity, so doubted she'd done anything to really worry myself over.


I was so very, very wrong.


My daughter was proudly completing a pedicure of her toes, feet and legs. In my most favorite color of polish, Tahitian Sunrise. Or is it Sunset? Either way-- it's my favorite, by Ulta. And, since I'd so wisely left the bathroom lights off (for the sake of preventing temptation), she had taken it into the little hallway where our closets are, between bedroom and bathroom...where there was a light on! Such brilliance. Needless to say, she got a thorough polish-remover scrubbing and a second bath in less than a half hour. And there are still remnants of polish on her toenails (which she had very completely painted, not missing a single one!).

And I took pictures of it, of course, before cleaning her up (and reminding her repeatedly that it is MOMMY'S JOB to paint nails):



Anyone know how to get nail polish out of the carpet?

12 October 2007

Some weeks and months as the mom of a child with Sensory Processing Disorder stretch on and on. I can only imagine that those same weeks of struggle feel eternal to the child involved. The past month has been that way in our house.

I won’t expose the specifics of the trials we’re enduring, but suffice it to say that I had a major meltdown over the weekend, I’ve cried nearly every day this week, I’m not getting nearly enough sleep and my heart stays very heavy for my son right now. (Oh, and the cherry on top—can we say Monistat? And pregnant hormones, of course!) It is almost as though Little B has regressed by two years in some respects. Why this season is so hard for him, I do not know. But somehow, every fall, he struggles harder than any other time of year. We start into a cycle that takes so long to break. It’s early this year, by about a month. I truly hope it’s not an indicator that this will get worse before it gets better. His self confidence is taking a beating and he almost seems lost in some other world many times. It breaks my heart. Indeed, my heart aches so much I can hardly find the words to pray for him. I must ask my Lord to intercede for me. I barely know what his needs are at the moment.

I also know he gets severe congestion each fall. He battles coughing, nasal congestion, sinus infections, ear infections and so on. I do think there is at least a mild connection between this and his SPD struggles. But even removing dairy from his diet does not eliminate this problem during the fall season (it helps considerably when spring rolls around, however). I realize there are other things I can adjust in his diet, though it seems he’d only need that seasonally—and to be specific here, how on earth do you begin removing gluten/wheat and sugar from a child’s diet in October, November, and December? Let’s be honest and realistic. This is not the time to introduce new, drastic measures. He already feels horribly self-conscious at parties or when the class has cupcakes, etc, and he has to have something different. (I desperately loathe all birthday parties on account of this.)

My son is so sensitive. He knows he’s feeling angry a lot. I know that it stems from something being “off” internally and frustrating him to this point. I recognize the signs of struggling with transition, making changes, craving tactile input, and other things. I know when all these needs are not met it shows outwardly in attitude—frustration, anger, irritability, even aggression. There are so many diverse facets to his needs that can change by the day or even hour. Knowing how to meet this is virtually impossible at times.

04 October 2007

10 years

Today is our 10th wedding anniversary.
I remember thinking when we got married that I couldn’t wait to have been married for ten years. And today is so much better than our wedding day; I love the children we’ve grown together, the life we’ve built, the love we’ve shared and the very foundation that time alone can build. And I love the man I married so much more than I ever dreamed I could. What I felt on our wedding day was deep and strong, yet pales in comparison to what I feel today. My husband understands me better than anyone else; he respects me as a person as well as respecting my thoughts and feelings; he knows when to let my funky moods run their course and when to snap me out of it. He can laugh with me in the deep, cracked up, leaky eyed laugh. He truly cherishes me.

I pray the Lord grants us many, many more years together. I cannot fathom life without him by my side—he is my perfect match. I absolutely look forward to being old together; I can think of little else I would want.

How will we commemorate this great day? We’re going to the Fall Festival at our son’s school this evening. Something we can have a great time doing as a family. Perhaps we’ll get to have a “date” soon, but for now our trusty baby sitters are out of town (also known as my parents). And really, our anniversary to us is also celebrating becoming a family—first to each other and later adding our children. So spending it with our kids is perfect.

Our 20th anniversary will be even more fabulous. I just know it. And we’re already halfway there! Oh, the anticipation of the next ten years. . .

01 October 2007

the game of tag about your man:

Kim at Mommy-logue tagged me for this, and since I've just arrived home from Disney last night, and have accomplished mostly nothing productive all day, I thought I'd post my answers. Hopefully I'll post about our trip in a day or two (after I make it to the grocery store and unload our suitcases and catch up on sleep in my GOOD bed; you get the idea!).

1. Who is your man? “Mr. J” per my blog nicknames. :)
2. How long have you been together? Married for 10 years this week, but we met in High School, and had a few crushes that were never simultaneous our senior year.
3. How long did you date? Well, technically, only for a couple months between my freshman and sophomore year in college. Then, I ended things for a variety of reasons, and by spring he told me he wanted to spend the rest of his life with me (statement of intent, not a proposal, that came the next year), but I moved out of the state 6 weeks later for a full year (thus his urgency in sharing his heart) then I planned a wedding when I moved home.
4. How old is your man? 31
5. Who eats more? That depends on the meal and the mood and if I’m pregnant or nursing. Too much variety to that question!
6. Who said "I love you" first? I believe he did. I’m trying to remember the occasion. . .
7. Who is taller? He is.
8. Who sings better? Most definitely he sings better. No doubting it since my son recently tried to teach me how to sing . . . ahem.
9. Who is smarter? He says I am, I say he is. I think we’re both pretty darn smart: we married each other!
10. Whose temper is worse? Uh, mine.
11. Who does the laundry? Me. He pitches in occasionally, and messes up my system which frustrates me, but I know he’s only trying to help out. He’s GOOD at helping out. I’m keeping him!
12. Who takes out the garbage? He does. I do the reminding.
13. Who sleeps on the right side of the bed? I always wonder about this question; I assume it refers to the right side when you LOOK at the bed, not when you sit in/lie on your back in the bed, correct? If it is indeed when you LOOK at the bed, he does. We’re thinking about switching sides, though. Haha!!
14. Who pays the bills? I do! (Except during the cycles when I force him to participate so he gets a reality check on what's up in the accounting department in our family.)
15. Who is better with the computer? He is.
16. Who mows the lawn? He has until this past month when we hired someone to do it. Thank goodness.
17. Who cooks dinner? It varies. These days, I loathe cooking and often don’t have much appetite even though my morning sickness is gone, so he has to do more than usual which is hard when it’s past the kid’s meal time. Can we say carry-out?
18. Who drives when you are together? Typically, he drives, but sometimes I do.
19. Who pays when you go out? He does.
20. Who is most stubborn? Uh, probably me, but we can share that job. Ha.
21. Who is the first to admit when they are wrong? Most likely him, but again, we take turns.
22. Whose parents do you see the most? Mine.
23. Who kissed who first? He kissed me. And told me he wanted to because he did not feel like getting hit if his timing was bad. . .I’d never kissed anyone before, and he knew it was an important point to me.
24. Who asked who out? He asked me out. We had a friend along (who I credit with our introduction a few years prior), so our first “date” was kind of unofficial. However, we were supposed to see Nell and it was no longer playing, and we had to settle for Dumb and Dumber. I’ve loathed that movie and Jim Carey ever since. NOT a good first date movie, but I still liked the man who took me.
25. Who proposed? He did. At a waterfall when I was home visiting from Seattle. I moved home sooner than planned to marry the man!
26. Who is more sensitive? That can vary, too!
27. Who has more friends? Me.
28. Who has more siblings? We each have one: he has a sister, I have a brother.
29. Who wears the pants in the family? “And the two shall be one. . .” I’d say we share a pair. :)

18 September 2007

goodbye giddy

This morning my family of four went to Giddy's memorial service. After many weeks of slowly withering away and having virtually no appetite yet, receiving constant medication for pain, she slipped away late Saturday evening. A sadness and a relief to everyone.

Both she and Poppa had both chosen to be cremated, then to share an urn together. Honestly, I found it sweet and romantic. They were married for many, many years and while life was not always peachy by any stretch, they shared a long, abiding love that showed in their eyes when they were together. I always delighted to see them like that.


I was unable to stay for the service since several things occurred in our morning:

We live a pretty fair distance from the funeral home, and planned to leave at 9:30am; the service started at 11:00am. That would have given us way more than enough time, and essentially it was a built in buffer for running behind (an essential for our family!). In reality, we left at 10:00 sharp. It would be close, but not that bad, really (rush hour last night going to visitation made this drive an easy 1 hr 15 mins and maybe more; not so in lighter traffic).

No less than 20 minutes down the road, my son had to use the bathroom urgently. While we barely made it to the next exit, make it we did; while father and son ran into McDonald's to take care of business I circled the drive thru for an Egg McMuffin and - more importantly - coffee. I did not hold anyone up as I still waited a few more minutes for "the boys" (as Miss C and I affectionately call them) to return to the van.

On our way again, the tension mildly rising each time someone glanced at the clock, we exited one freeway onto another freeway for several miles, only to miss the next exit onto yet another freeway. Oops. Yeah, tension went up a bit more then. At last we were turned around and got off at the correct exit. I think we had to turn around once more at some point but honestly I can't remember for sure; this was not my territory and it's been a lot of years since my husband drove it reguaraly. To say my emotional, grieving husband was rattled is putting it kindly. He could barely recall the exit name he was looking for and we were now approaching from a different direction to add confusion.

We arrived at 11:00am. Maybe 11:01. I dropped our "boys" off at the door then parked (he did the driving; I only drove for the drive thru earlier and to park the car) and put Miss C in her dress (it was pressed and those of you who have children know what car seats and heat do to clothing). Apparently, my husband and son made it in after everyone was seated but before the service started. I came in after it started and planned to sit in the back row. Miss C had other ideas.

We walked into the chapel and I aimed for the nearest pew; a friend was sitting on the end and moved over for me. Miss C promptly and loudly began to fuss to find "the boys". She knew they were in here and by golly she wanted to sit with them, no two ways about it. I hauled my entertainment bag back up on my shoulder, grabbed the cute darling from the floor where she sat loud and unhappy, and left. Thank goodness I was still by the door!

We sat and colored with Color Wonder markers on a couch far from the chapel doors. (I love those things; I had no fear of her decorating the many antiques adorning the vicinity.) She sat sweetly and compliantly once I offered her a "princess" coloring book with makers. Whew.

I am sad to have missed the service, however visiting with family afterward at a luncheon was pleasant. My husband is suffering deeply this week, though. I grieve for him right now. In losing these grandparents, he feels he has lost his closest connection to many extended family that he barely scratched the surface in getting to know. We do not live near them, and while he has an aunt and uncle he sees regularly, there are so many more whose names he was still learning. Extended family he enjoyed having a connection to and seeing at family gatherings, hosted by his grandparents. Those bindings feel like they are evaporating with the deaths of Poppa and Giddy.

And his "other side" of the family has made the long, sad weekend much more difficult and miserable. This death is a deep grief for my husband. For them, it was "do we go or not go--Oh, let's ask J. and see what he thinks; let's spend hours talking to him about the pros the cons and the fact I didn't even speak to her for the past 6 years because of 'offenses'." I will stop with the emotionally distrought details here, but the anguish it caused, the intensified grief it created has left a vile taste in my mouth. Suffice it to say we are currently screening all calls and I plan to do so for a couple weeks. It's not fair to degrade family and grief like this. (To clarify, "the other side" is my father-in-law & family versus Poppa & Giddy being my mother-in-law's family.)

So long Giddy -- A lady who always welcomed me into her home and family. You left a lovely legacy of family and will be missed greatly.



**(One might wonder why my children were in attendance. However, my son is old enough and specifically wanted to go; I had no sitter available for Miss C. My parents are my choice for watching my children, and I have one friend I would trust them with, but she is out of town. I'm highly selective in who I will allow to "babysit". I know too many stories of trusted friends not being so trustworthy after all; I'd rather be choosey, not sorry.) **

13 September 2007

on cancer and death

I posted about Amy Wilhoite not too long ago--a woman of deep, abiding faith dying of cancer. On Monday, she went to meet her Lord and as her husband said, received "Ultimate Healing". (If you click the link with her name and scroll down, you can read her husband's touching words regarding her last day in two short posts). My heart has ached this week. She was younger than me, and had a one year old little boy and a husband whose love for her was so huge and strong. She had a large family who cared endlessly for her as well. I followed her blog from the first week she was diagnosed and it was a heart wrenching journey to say the least. If I recall correctly, she never actually achieved remission in the year and two months that she fought this cancer.

Her battle reminds me of my mother-in-law whom I've spoken of a few times. She, too, died of cancer leaving behind small children who have no real memory of her. I have felt cheated in some ways that I never knew her. I do believe, having known her brother, sister and parents, that I would have really enjoyed her. I cannot imagine what my husband and sister-in-law have felt over the years.

And these thoughts of cancer and my mother-in-law bring me full circle to think of Giddy, her mother, who is dying of the same cancer. Over Labor Day weekend, Giddy was given 24 hours at most and hospice was coming every day. A week later she was put in the hopice care center as that was the best choice for keeping her comfortable. And now, days later, she is still just withering into a wisp of a person, rarely concious and rarely able to recognize her own daughter. She has not eaten in two or three weeks and her breathing is slow and paced by a minute at times.

These days are hard and emotional and so tiring. We are trying to leave for our trip to Disney later this month and I hardly know how to feel--I'm excited and looking forward to it, yet full of anxiety and nerves. Will we go on the heels of a funeral? Will we have to cancel or return early for a funeral? Some of these thoughts also bring a load of guilt, that I'd even consider such things! I do know we are in need of this time as a family since the summer turned into workfest for my husband while I sat around miserably unable to eat and too tired to tidy (thankfully, right before I got pregnant, a lot of things around here had been in very good shape, but it still adds up fast).

The truth is, the Lord knows her "appointed day" and that is a settled detail for Him. I need not worry or be anxious -- I am just cycling through what would be PMS if not for the very real fact I have a kicking little boy in my belly (and I still have less appetite than I expect, but at least the ill feelings have gone at last).

And so you have all my reasons for being Oscar the Grouch this week. (Oh, all that and two mini-Oscars that live in my house with me. But at least they're cute and loving the rest of the time....hahaha!)

05 September 2007

something new

Yesterday, I ventured into unknown territory. Well, for me at least. I did something I’ve not done before, and I have to say I enjoyed it. Thoroughly. Okay, I expected to enjoy it. I still think I’d have been fine not doing it.

But, I am savoring what happened. You see, I had an ultrasound. That mid-way ultrasound everyone anxiously awaits because they HAVE to know what gender their baby is. I’ve never found out until now. That’s right. I did not know Little B was a boy, nor did I know Miss C was a girl until their births…and my mother’s intuition is pretty far off since I expected the opposite both times. The suspense has never bothered me, I’ve never had gender preferences, and I’ve rather had fun letting everyone else agonize over not knowing what I’m having.

This time, I told my husband he could decide if we found out or not. He never missed a beat when responding: “Okay, we’re finding out!” (Though, wonderful man that he is, he was willing to let me change my mind if I really didn’t want to know.) My mother was ecstatic since she’s begged me to know beforehand “so I can plan”. I’ve enjoyed the suspense in the past, but this time around, I am going to call my baby by name and pray for it by name in the remaining months. And I can tell I am already bonding a bit more, even in the few hours since I’ve learned what I’m having.

It’s also good for Little B to know so he can prepare although we did warn him that there’s a small chance they’re wrong. We had some very hurt feelings that we did not decide to go with his original name suggestion, but . . . well, while I liked it, it just wasn’t a go for us. You know?

And so, without further ado…wait – should I tell you now or another day? I could make you guess! Though I suppose that’s harder to do since most people want to check out the belly in person before guessing.

I will start by telling you this: My pregnancy is somewhat different this time compared to the first two.
I want sweets (a very bad thing!) which I’ve never wanted before.
I have a lot of trouble getting enough sleep at night which is a first.
I have migraines which I had with Miss C.
Until two weeks ago, I believed I was having a girl (mostly because of the migraines which had gone away completely while pregnant with Little B and did not return until he was almost one) at which time I decided it’s probably a boy, but I have no reasoning or logic for this; I always go back and forth a bit.
I truly had no preference.

So, settle in your minds what we’re having….got it? Be ready to tell me your thoughts so I hear the fun of people guessing, okay? And since you are being so kind and let me have my fun and teasing, I will go ahead and tell you that we are indeed having another little baby. Yes. A baby. A sweet little baby! I’m so excited. And we’re not going to call it “It” for the next few months because he has a name already: Baby J.

Gotcha.

(And this is a really, really good thing since I swear we’d have been in the hospital with baby name books still searching for the elusive first name to go with our almost settled middle name had this child been a she instead!)

03 September 2007

peanut

I am a total glutton for punishment. I mean really.

I was hanging out with my mom Saturday, doing a spot of lunch, a bit of shopping. With my children in tow, of course. She needed to stop by the pet store for turtle food, which is a stop my son adores, but never gets to do with me because Miss C will typically get a few hives there due to her dog and cat allergy. Yes, even without touching the animals.

So, I struck a deal. Miss C was almost out for the count in her car seat, and I was craving a decaf latte (yes, straight up, no sweeteners, no flavorings--they're best this way); Starbucks shares a small parking lot with the pet store. How terribly convenient. So, I waited in a long line (this location is older and lacks the lovely drive-thru feature) for my latte and a pumpkin loaf while my mother and son patiently waited their turn to have an indulgent stop in the pet store. I sat sipping my lovely drink, eating generous pinches of my dessert and chatting with a friend on my cell while they took their time and Miss C slept on. Ideal, really. I was quite content and enjoying myself thoroughly.

Then, as I hung up the phone, I glanced in my side view mirror and saw my son and mother arriving. They were approaching my door, not the one for my son to get in. So, I rolled down the window. Big eyes peered up at me, so incredibly full of hope and expectation that fear began at my toes and worked it's way up. "Please, can I have a hampster???" Uh. . .uh. . .Apparently he'd just seen one giving birth and fell in love with the whole hampster world. Oh Boy.

"Well, I don't know if this is a good time for it..." I began. Now, my mom had already warned him the answer might be "No", but the tears spilled over and the frustration set in. I explained I couldn't make that decision without talking to Daddy. I explained that we didn't know if Miss C would have an allergy. We discussed the fact that they don't live long lives and it will die at an unkown time. We talked about the fact that he would be responsible for it, not me. And that if it's not fed and cared for it will die sooner not later.

Oh, and he wanted a girl "So it will have babies." Uh. . .

Turn my head and die laughing while my mom gloats that it's finally struck me what he's been specifying. So, I had to explain that babies need daddies, just like him, Miss C and the new baby we're having...there's a daddy. So, having a girl hampster doesn't mean we'll have babies.

We at long last settled on getting a book to learn more about hampsters and their care. Right. My mother did let me know that apparently there was one for adoption (read: free, but she was offering to foot the bill anyway so that wasn't exactly the issue at hand), and the lady in the store had mentioned it which was probably encouraging my son's desire for a new bet now.

The trotted off to find a book and become informed on the hampster up for adoption.

I called my husband to make a joint decision. He thought it was fine. I kinda did, too. Little B has been very willingly feeding the birds anytime he's reminded for a copule months now. He enjoys it and loves that it's part of his job (that started at his request). Granted, he doesn't typically remember on his own, but does not complain when it's brought up. I'm impressed, and just fill in when I forget to have him do it. He's also greatly improved with keeping his room tidier, and we've been very pleased.

My mother and son arrive back at the van beaming--remember, they were supposed to find a BOOK about hampsters. My mother about burst as she told me the hampster for adoption was so friendly, so sweet, so cuddly. . .and practically perfect for a first pet. By this time, Miss C was awake and I reluctantly loaded her into the stroller a pet store adventure (and yes, she came out with the requisite 2 or 3 hives).

First, we checked out the hampster and it was everything my mom said and more. I let the lady know we'd take it--a female hampster no less!--but kept Little B on his toes about my indecisiveness for a few minutes longer. Cruel mother, I am. As we perused the hampster aisle I explained our reasons for allowing him to have a pet hampster (all the aformentioned responsibility stuff). He was so beside himself!! We got it all. . ."ham-trac" (the traditional ball with a track for it to race on!), cage, food, bedding, etc. Now, we've had to set rules for having a grown-up around when the hampster is handled since he was easily about to get carried away with the in and out stuff.

And, he has announced to a room full of people that his new hampster, "Peanut" will be having babies. . . hhhmmm. . .

Welcome to the family, Peanut.

21 August 2007

"long" time coming

Over the weekend, I treated myself to something I was long overdue for. I had been waiting for this intentionally and with a purpose, not depriving myself. In the last few months I was beginning to feel a lot of anticipation since I knew the time was drawing near. I wanted to give a part of myself and it took over two year's patience to be ready.


In order to fully appreciate what I am about to share, I believe I will post pictures so that you can see for yourself what I have labored to do and give. Believe me, the temptation to give up was strong at times, especially in the heat of summer when the weight of this could no longer be held up by the usual means I had.




I must admit, I have always like the color of my hair, even the texture. It's thick abeit fine, but my problem was how stinkin' straight-as-a-board-with-no-body it's always been. Even as long as it got to be, the fineness of it would make it slip out of a french braid! I've longed for curls my whole life--yes, the grass is always greener. I've even been known to perm it, but that's so not the same. My last real haircut was shortly after Miss C was born, a little over 2 years ago. I had the remains of a grown-out perm still above my shoulders, so the inch or two that was trimmed off definitely wasn't promoting length. Indeed, I grew all of that in little over 2 years (I think the few months of pregnancy helped push it along this summer, though!).

As I sat in the chair, somewhat unsure of what I wanted, just knowing "wash and wear" always has been and always will be my motto (I hate blowdrying it and while a touch of product now and again is all right, the fine hair on my head doesn't hold style the way many women's can), I told the lady how my hair has no body, blah blah blah. I said to keep it simple, some long layers to give it a bit of psuedo-body, not shorter than chin length. I've liked that on me before, so figured it would go well again.

Knowing I wanted to donate my hair, she sectioned it off so as not to "waste" any by putting it in a single pony tail. And then she began to cut (bye-bye tangles and excessive conditioner!).














Yes, a full 11-13 inches are gone. (The minimum accepted is 10 inches.)



The stylist remarked that my hair had more body than I was telling her. In fact, it showed signs of curling, though not "curly". The small hairs at the nape of my neck were definitely not plainly straight. Well then. That suited me just fine. She said either pregnancy or age can change one's hair. I'd heard that, and while it isn't drastically different, I'll take all the body I can get in my hair (and elsewhere for that matter...my figure is typically "straight" as well--when not pregnant!). In short order she was done. I felt lighter, cooler, and happier (I'd been grumpy earlier in the day, not to mention nervous since I was trying a new hair salon that was not exactly what I expected compared to their website). Literally, she did not "style" my hair (and I washed it long enough before the appointment for it to have almost completely air-dried). And I loved the way it looked. It was perfect just the way it was, definitely fuller than I remembered, and I still can't stop running my fingers through it. I'm a happy lady, I tell you!!





(Yes, that's my belly at almost 19 weeks. . .)


Locks of Love


16 August 2007

aw, nuts!

Today, we had a routine allergy appointment for Miss C. We recently had an oral challenge with eggs that showed she had “outgrown” this particular allergy, and it’s made a lovely step toward “normalness” in our meals. I can now feed her French Toast and scrambled eggs, add egg to our pancakes and cake mix, and it’s one less ingredient to watch for when purchasing food for our home.

Dairy, we still avoid; she still gets a red hive or two if we touch or kiss her after we’ve touched or consumed dairy (even cream in our coffee…thus our switch to soy in our coffee, which has definitely grown on us and we now find ourselves preferring the soy!). Today’s appointment was to do another skin test for dairy, thereby confirming that it’s worse, the same, or improved. It’s essentially the same for her, which looks like a massive welt of very noticeable proportions after the allotted 15 minutes go by. Poor baby.

But we couldn’t keep it simple, could we? I had developed some suspicions about peanuts and Miss C not going so good together. As in, she’d accidentally had a granola bar with nut flour, and did fine, so was told to go ahead and let her try peanut butter (because she had other allergies, we were originally told to wait on nuts and shellfish; we’re still waiting on the shellfish, which they’ll include in a test next summer). The peanut butter attempt so did NOT go fine. She began scraping at her tongue within 2 bites, and crying. I tried this on two or three separate occasions in case it was a texture or taste issue (she is accustomed to Sun Butter and Soy Butter {blech} which seem similar in texture, though). Anyhow, I requested a testing of peanut today since I didn’t want to take any chances. And don’t you know the welt was quite similar in size to the dairy one.

I find this far more alarming than a dairy allergy. Indeed, they give me the standard printouts about the allergies in question, as well as what to know about anaphylactic shock; the dairy information was familiar, but not scary. The peanut one began with the all-caps sentence: THIS ALLERGY CAN BE EXTEREMLY DANGEROUS—SOMETIMES FATAL. Yeah, let’s scare mom more than she already was.

Extra precautions I get to take note of? Oh, when a product says it has been manufactured in a plant with peanut products, 10% of the time it is contaminated; I need to avoid these. I need to make doubly sure I have my daughter’s Epi-Pen available at all times. Should I get rid of the peanut-butter my son is so very accustomed to (and I won't even go into the potential trauma this could cause since PBJ is THE standard in his lunch box and new foods are only sometimes an okay thing with him)? Well, it wouldn’t hurt. I’m just hoping the transition to Sun Butter isn’t too painful, because I really feel compelled to make that switch. I already try not to dip the PB knife in the jam, but nobody’s perfect.

I feel an underlying sadness and stress in this. It’s one more hurdle to jump, another food issue to learn around (more specifically than simply not introducing it), and one more concern when dining out.

10 August 2007

a little magic

Where have I been? Well, not too far away, really. Online more than usual (ahem, much more. . .). Just not here. I have been visiting Tour Guide Mike. A LOT. Mike tells me everything I need to know these days because, see, we're going to Walt Disney World (and yes, Mike's for real; we've used his site twice quite successfully). Yes, indeedy--and we’re going SOON (as in next month). In fact, we're just planning to take Little B out of school for a week so we can go during slow season. Is that really worth it or necessary? Well, in my book, he'll be doing his school work anyway, this time of year is THAT much better (less than half the summer crowds kind of better), and what's life if you can't throw in a tad bit of "extras" like missing school for fun? Not regularly, of course (I take school very seriously), but once in a blue moon. He just gets five blue moons in a row this fall.

Now, I’m busting to tell you a secret. We're not paying for it. Nope. A few extras, yes, the whole trip, no. When my loyal husband reached the ten-year mark working for his company recently, they awarded him a free vacation. (Yes, anyone who reaches ten years gets one, but still. . .) There were several package choices but nothing overly appealing since we wanted to include our kids and didn't want to pay extra for them. After some brief discussion, we very happily began our planning to the "happiest place on earth". We'll pay for the stroller rentals, a couple of meals, and souvenirs. THEY will be flying us down for seven nights, to enjoy seven days in the various parks, and seven days of meals. Oh, and trip insurance, heaven forbid we need it.

Why now? We like the slow season--really like it; the baby is due in January which would be our first choice of dates (it would be cooler versus still sweltering and we’ve never gone then, though we are September veterans); and we didn't want wait a whole year to take a free trip. How anxious would that make us feel? Besides, we'll go back eventually. We always do. ;)

Undoubtedly, you will hear more from me on this topic. I am not a person who must own tons of Disney paraphernalia (some souvenirs, though I’m not a Disney-store-a-holic), but I do love a good trip to the World with some catering-to that they always provide. And talk about catering to. . .with advance notice, the allergy issues with food will be total non-issues. A couple phone calls and they simply accommodate, end of discussion (now THAT makes a good vacation!). They truly go out of the way to make the trip “magical” and fun. I love that.

07 August 2007

school days, school days

Little B met his teacher today (she seems really nice) and starts first grade on Thursday! Sniff, sniff. Well, actually it's not as emotional as it was last year (thank goodness) but he's grown so much. It hadn't even occurred to me until we got to the open house, but he's a lot taller all of a sudden; two people commented on how much he's grown, and I was noticing the same thing while they said it. Wow.

Along the same thread of thought, this year Little B will have the opportunity to carpool in the mornings with a little girl down the street who was in his class last year, and we've played with them several times this summer. In the afternoons, they will both ride the bus home from school. Not a bad trade-off; I'm happy with it. AND, by catching a ride to school, he can do his therapuetic listening in the car anytime he hasn't already done it when it's time to go. This can potentially allow for a bit more rest since he can just get ready, eat, brush teeth and leave, versus fitting all that in and around 30 minutes of listening time (some things can be done at the same time, some things not so easily). Thank you Lord!! It will make my mornings that much less stressful, and with a new baby coming, less stress is a very good thing!

That said, I have a question to throw out. The lady (well, friend) driving him will be coming a whopping 8 houses down to pick him up four mornings a week (not on therapy days, which will still interfere with school, but so be it; that cannot be helped), driving one daughter to pre-k and then taking her other daughter, along with Little B, to the elementary school. I know it's hardly extra distance, but I would like to give her some gas money. I don't feel to give her a lot, and I doubt she'd take it, but considered even ten bucks (fifteen, twenty?) every few weeks/once a month. Does that seem too much, too little, a good amount? Does anyone have thoughts on this? I don't want to be insulting, and I don't think she expects it at all (and will possibly refuse it), but I would like to offer something. I very much appreciate her willingness to let Little B ride with them as well as the opportunity for him to do his therapuetic listening in their car (she'd have to keep the radio off, but he can chat just fine during that time; indeed, very little ever stops him from chatting since he never runs out of things to say! haha!).

26 July 2007

dream come true

The Thursday morning of our vacation, my husband woke up from a nightmare that he was fired. Now, to understand this you need to know that he loves his job and takes it very seriously. He is a civil engineer who worked and went to school for the first six years of our marriage. Last month marked ten years at the same company, and next month will be four years since he received his degree. Where many employees surf the web during the day and stop to chatter at length, my husband works to stay focused and make sure he does the best job he can. I can tell you that he cares more for the quality of work than many of those around him; I know this because he is amazed by their lack of concern over certain details. His dedication is well-balanced as hard as that can be to attain, and that makes me even happier. He is not a workaholic in any manner, but will willingly put in the extra hours when projects require it; I am fine with that. This man makes me so proud I could burst some buttons. Really. But he can also be extremely hard on himself at times and it cycles through. He worries that he isn’t doing well enough or worries about not meeting deadlines (which had been an ongoing issue, but he was not getting reasonable ones; more on that later).

And so, all this wrapped into the bad end of his cycle of worries caused the nightmare; it’s not his first, but at this time there was extra pressure about a project and he’d checked his work email before bed. A bad combination, and it resulted in a lousy night for a man who’d been driving all day.

The oddest part of what happened is that when he arrived at work on Monday morning, he discovered his boss had been fired on Thursday. Let go, laid off, fired, who knows the actual term used, but the reasons became clear over the next week. He was a nice man, and got along well with everyone. He tried very hard; he’d been at the company for 17 years and was a partner. But he was no longer really qualified for the job he did. He was paid well, but his entire department was falling apart, deadlines were not reasonable (at all, I can testify to this), and he didn’t have quite the communication skills to pull it all off. And so, the owner of the company spent six months trying to find a well-qualified replacement.

A week later, he started. My husband has been working 60ish hours each week since our trip to pick up some slack while things were beginning to change in positive ways. For one, he will be getting an office rather than the cubicle setting he’s been in for a decade. Another change is the drafter he’s been assigned; and most of all, the new boss communicates, has the qualifications to clearly understand how things are and what needs doing. He is compassionate man with his own family, a man who believes in getting the job done right in a reasonable way. This means that the second week he saw my husband’s time sheet showed 60 hours, he asked “How is your wife doing?” Sixty hours is not the norm, and it is not expected except in rare circumstances under a deadline; it’s only happening now because of a multitude of changing factors, but is expected to ease up soon. At the time, my husband honestly answered, “Fine; we’re able to work it out.”

Now, as you know, I’m pregnant. Read: hormonal. I have a child at home with Sensory Processing Disorder who needs a lot more sensory input than I feel physically capable of accommodating at the moment, and it makes for some intensely long days. Last night, I fell apart. Badly. Dinner has been consistently my most difficult meal to eat much less prepare, and therefore the kids often wait for Daddy to get home and help me deal with that prep…and it’s past a reasonable dinnertime every night (I do not make them starve, offering decent snacks, but that’s the best I can do some days; other days they get fish sticks or chicken fingers when I know they just need to have a real meal SOON). I bawled on the phone as my husband left work close to 6:30 again (he has about a 35-45 minute commute) and told him I needed, NEEDED him to leave between 5:15-5:30pm tonight.

And you know what, when he talked to his boss today, explaining carefully that I was pregnant and had a really hard night last night, his boss said, “I want you to leave at 5:00 today. And 4:00 tomorrow.” Guess what? I cried again. I really like his boss. He got it. He wasn’t phased, he didn’t think anyone was whining, and he realized that 60 hours is just a lot. And he is a smart enough man to know that family must be taken care of. I am so grateful.

I must go now. My husband should be home soon. And I put a roast in the crock pot this morning, so he won’t even have to help me with that. I’m still feeling hormonal, but I’ve been blessed with a peaceful day, happy kids, and an early-arriving husband. Definitely a dream come true, not a nightmare.

23 July 2007

these days

Week-long migraines are never a good thing, and especially worse when all you have to battle it is an ice pack, 8-Hour Tylenol and a soda (versus the usual half-dozen Motrin with the soda). Oh well, this too, shall pass. Or so I keep telling it! At least I am not alone in that every one of my migraine-prone friends in the area has had one equally long. It must be the weather.

I am definitely in my maternity clothes; I feel my walk changing and Miss C now talks to the baby in my tummy, even kissing it and telling it she love it. Little B does that, too, of course, but he actually gets what is going on. I love the feel of the baby "sitting" on my lap as I lean forward just a bit, and the new shorts and tees make it look like a little ball on my belly. I swear it happened overnight!

We are gearing up for school to start in just over 2 weeks; we start back sooner than the rest of the county since we're in the city district. I rather like our Thursday start date, giving the kids (and parents) a weekend to recoup before starting again on Monday! School supplies are ready, the new, strict dress code is available in Little B's closet, and bed time schedules are getting more rigid by the week. Me? I'm just so ready for Fall, and I suppose that school starting signals to me that it will indeed arrive again this year. ;)

Oh, and I'm trying to fly again. As in FlyLady. I've tried this long ago, and for the most part like the way it works. I just chose a bad week to start--migraines are not conducive to progress. But, I need a better routine and I've got the motivation even if I am still exhausted. And so I'm going to give it my best effort.

17 July 2007

second trimester

I am officially in my second trimester now.

Other than being poochier, with all my regular clothes too tight and maternity still drooping though showing my new shape, I feel exactly the same - sick most days. Based on my previous pregnancies, I've probably got as much as 6 weeks left to feel ill. I've lost a few pounds, and gained back one, I think. The most exciting news is that I'm back up to a "B" cup...heheh (thus the pound gained?). =) So, my baby is about 3 1/2 inches, or the size of my fist and depending on what you read, either 1 oz or 2. It even has fingerprints now.

Names are harder this time around. I've used my favorites and while we think we have a first name for a boy, there are 2 or 3 choices for a middle. And a girl...I'm at a loss. There is one name that stands out to me exceedingly, but there's a delicate connotation within the family (the name of a cousin's ex-wife, and his brother used that name for a child after the fact. . .I don't want to cross anyone!). But I'm still in love with the name, and perhaps we'll fit it in as a middle name. We just cannot settle on anything for sure.

13 July 2007

vacation, part two

As I mentioned, we arrived very late Thursday night, after traveling all day. Shortly before we arrived, “Grandma C” as my kids know her, called to make sure we were all right. We are “one of the kids” and she checks on us just as she does her own, which we love. We weren’t far at that point, and when we finally got to the hotel, she was arriving in the lobby, no doubt watching for us. She sat with Little B and loved on him the way my own parents do while we checked in and unloaded all our junk. Miss C was sleeping soundly, at very long last.

My friend Bek was visiting another friend of hers 10 miles from there, and leaving the next morning, so we had a quick visit (around 11:30pm!), which was a real treat considering our homes are roughly 17 hours apart! After that, I settled into the incredibly nice hotel bed with about the best pillow in the world and slept soundly. Friday morning arrived way too soon, but at least I was rested.

The groom’s family consists of Grandma C, Grandaddy, Auntie A and Auntie T…each “auntie” has two kids, and my son was in heaven with four kids/cousins to play with. (Oh, and “Uncle E” is the groom…and yes, those abbreviations are for real life, not just my blog…how convenient!). Anyhow, Auntie A was headed out with her mom to work on the rehearsal dinner site, and I left my two kids and husband to play with her two kids and husband, giving me freedom to help out and no children to chase for a few hours. One of the tasks I had during this time was ironing several table cloths. It was interesting. At home, the only ironing I do is fabric for sewing. My husband does all the rest. But, table cloths are not exactly complicated (unless you count the hotel iron that had an auto-shut off every few minutes). And yet, as I ironed these large white pieces of fabric, I had the sense of washing the feet of someone I cared about. I felt humbled and honored to be serving E and his family in this small way. I used that time to pray for the bride and groom, and to pour love and blessing out onto them.

Around lunch time, we switched with our husbands and they finished setting up while we took our kids to eat and the rehearsal. That was pretty funny considering Miss C would have nothing to do with the wreath they wanted her to wear, and while she was great at dropping petals she insisted I hold her hand down the aisle. Everyone was a good sport and said if she didn’t seem willing to go down alone at the wedding, to just let it go and not force the issue (thank goodness they didn’t want me to walk with her…that was so not gonna happen!).

Of course, the day sped by and by the time we got finished it was almost time for the rehearsal dinner. After using an emergency sewing kit to replace one button and strengthen another for my husband, we were planning to pick up Happy Meals for our kids since it was impractical to find out what ingredients would be in the catered food. At this point, we learned that E was on his way to the hotel to iron his pants and shirt since the friends he was staying with did not have an iron. My husband offered to do the ironing. I had the same sense of washing E’s feet, though my husband was doing the washing this time. It was a sweet serving. I left for the meals, planning to pick him back up, but E arrived as I left, and he just caught a ride which was easier.

Other than chasing the kids around (mostly the husbands had the outdoors chasing job, but I did my share of keeping tabs, and we missed most of the lovely toasts/speeches that were given), it was a nice evening. I felt submersed in the loving arms of my extended family by choice.

Saturday dawned very beautiful, and I think the wedding was one of best I’ve ever attended. Miss C was a total champ; she slept until right before they needed her for pictures, and I slipped her dress on just in time (her “princess dress” that Grandma C made for her). While she was quite playful at times, she did manage to walk the aisle in style, wearing the wreath (but forgetting to drop petals), and without mommy to hold on to. I raced down the side aisle, banging a loud vent in my efforts to meet her at the front, but she refused to come to me, wandering a bit, almost returning to the back, and having E point her my way (she earned many adoring chuckles and I heard many comments later about how cute she was); finally she found her way to Grandma C’s arms and then to mine when we all stood for the bride. Little B walked down as a ring bearer, handsome as could be, with one of his “cousins”; they were spectacular, old enough to do their job perfectly. And later, the two of them danced at the reception for a long time (his mother and agree we’d both be very pleased if they get married someday).

E is an incredibly romantic man, and I wept during his toast to his new in-laws and his lovely bride. As in, my eyes would not stop leaking for several minutes. I could not be happier for him.

That night, the family all went to a nice, fun restaurant, and had a splendid time. Bedtime was very late as usual, but every moment of the day was worth it. We slept in then had a leisurely breakfast with the family before rushing to load the van and check out. As we checked out, it began to rain. So, we chatted and hung out in the lobby for a little bit, waiting for it to pass. Only, it didn’t pass. The sky fell out for about 80% of our drive home, making it take longer than it should by a couple of hours. But, even that was worth the lovely weekend. I came home feeling full and happy; and Grandma C called to check on us as we drove, then made sure we arrived home safely. We are definitely cared for.

12 July 2007

vacation, part one

I must confess: I am not a beach-lover. If I could walk the edge of the surf and wiggle my toes in the sand, I'd love it (and I’m talking a quiet, unpopulated beach, not some hot-spot that draws every half-naked person within two thousand miles). But I am typically making sure sand is not in someone's mouth, chasing a toddler from visiting other beach-goers, reminding small people belonging to me to please not fling the sand as it gets into other's faces and eyes, and battling a boy who does not want to leave yet (which contrasts sharply with the little girl who adamantly waves “bye-bye ocean” and won’t go too close). I do not find that relaxing. I cannot stand getting sand in my swimsuit; it's disgusting. I don't enjoy sunscreen all over my body, either—and the sand that sticks to the sunscreen…ugh. Then there are the gritty grains that manage to find a way into my mouth. And the sand that traipses through the van and hotel room and the bathtub and ultimately the suitcases...sigh. I much prefer the sandbox at home that I do not have to participate in.

And yes, the first part of our vacation, we went to the beach. We were there for three nights at an incredibly good rate because we had to listen to a time-share spiel. Overall, that kind of deal doesn’t bother me, and I grew up attending a few of them with my parents. However, the poor customer service of the “marketing” part of the company set a bad tone from the get-go (odd, the sales lady seemed to claim no part of the marketing people, as though they were a totally different company—ha, NOT). And the ruthless, rude, conniving, potentially lying side of salespeople irks me to no end. There is absolutely NO reason for me to share personal information with them; they have NO right to inquire multiple times as to who in our family is in therapy and for what reason (information I kicked myself for sharing in the first place, and I refused to tell her any more to the point of wanting to walk out, only I didn’t want to be fined the $200 for not completing the tour and presentation that lasted a whopping two hours at lunch time after which I was ready to pass out from lack of food…yes, at NOON, at least I took lunch with me for the kids to keep them busy; looking back, the fee would probably have been well worth the satisfaction of walking out on her terrible manners.). Oh, and the office area smelled like smoke…?

I can tell you that if I was in the market for a time-share, this particular company would absolutely not get my business (and actually, I’d buy a used time-share at a tiny fraction of the original cost thanks to a tip from a friend!). They were the sour icing on the burnt cake of my beach trip. Well, undercooked cake, it really wasn’t that terrible, just a bit annoying at times. At least the Holiday Inn disguised as a different hotel (yes, the elevator permit listed them as Holiday Inn, but the hotel name on all the signage was different…go figure) had much better quality customer service and an excellent free breakfast in spite of the aging appearance of the place. What I don’t get is why they would not offer to put us up in a location like what they want to sell us…let us really experience the condos (which was in view of a golf course, not beachfront), rather than glimpse it for five minutes.

All in all, it wasn’t that atrocious, as I was with my three (well, four) most favorite people in the world—my husband and my children. Truly, the worst day of the entire week was Thursday, which found us driving 12 hours (the map said 8, and we didn’t stop that often…?) to get to the town where our friend would be getting married. We got in late that night and could only be thankful for the one hour time change that made it appear to be earlier. . .

(Stay tuned for part two, which was far more pleasant and enjoyable for me!)

10 July 2007

pass go, collect $200

Do you not absolutely love it when you discover that you have more money than you thought?

I entered several items twice into our money management software, simply estimating what the actual cost was, only to re-enter it later correctly, rather than adjusting it, so that it appeared we spent more. Upon balancing the account, I was able to delete those transactions, as well as the auto-entered payment for a therapy session we did not go to because of our trip.

Oh, and over the weekend, I made two moderate returns; today I made a large return. Returns can almost be as addictive as purchasing.

I'm feeling rich right about now. So sad it's only a temporary feeling. hahaha!!
(But I do think we should eat out to celebrate, no?)

09 July 2007

home again and tired to boot

We got home a week ago from a trek to the beach and then the wedding I've talked about. Neither half of the trip was in our state. And they were not in the same state, either. Indeed, we went south of home for three nights, then north of home (literally cutting through the main city near our home!) for the other three nights. The day between locations about killed me with the 12 hours in the van; thank God it wasn't a tiny car anymore. I have spent the past week trying to recover from all the travel and late nights!

I want to share some bits and pieces from each place, but for the moment my day's energy is seriously waning. Once lunch is over, I can only dream of resting while the children play or watch TV (or "Tee" as my daughter calls it). "Dream" is the operative word here. When I do lounge on the bed (our sofa is a love seat, not a full-size couch, so it is not funcitonal for lounging very long in my opinion), the Tee is on in my room under my watchful, very awake eye, and the kids are rambunctious so I repeatedly have to get up to handle things.

It's funny. I have a friend who is expecting her first baby in November, and she was recently talking about napping several times a day...I actually do remember that luxury. And I napped a bit with this one before Little B got out of school for the summer, but now? I scoff at my desire for rest. Ah well.

More later, friends...I promise. I want to lay down. Badly. And I need to run interference between Rafael--no, it's Spiderman, now--and a little girl who's half playing and half uncertain of what is going on.

23 June 2007

amy whilhoite

There is a blog I have been reading since shortly after it was begun around a year ago. It is about a lovely Christian woman Living With Leukemia. Her name is Amy Wilhoite and she has a rare form of leukemia, typically found in much older patients, making everything about her battle that much more challenging. Her strength has brought tears to my eyes on many occasions. Her will to live -- and live with faith -- is inspiring. She is the 26 year old mother of a one year old little boy, married to a man who has stood by her with a strength that is deeply touching. She has a close family and lots of siblings. She has defeated the odds repeatedly since the beginning. And this morning, I read that there is very little left that can be done for her. My heart is breaking with her and fighting with her.

21 June 2007

that kinda poochy stage

We are going to a wedding in a week. The wedding of a very dear friend for over a decade now. My son is named after the groom and his family. Yeah, that kind of wonderful friend. And we could not be more ecstatic about going. Some weddings, I could give or take. I would not miss this for the world. Indeed, my own two precious children will be in the wedding with several nieces and nephews of the groom. Yup, extended family.

Early on, I decided that I would absolutely NOT be doing the last-minute-shopping-for-a-dress-to-wear thing. I am notorious for those problems, and refused to cave to the stress. Six weeks ago, I found a fabulous dress at a consignment shop that made me happy and bought it. This particular store has a lovely policy of allowing an exchange within five days. On the fifth day, I took a pregnancy test. It was positive. I did not take the dress back because:
a) I liked it
b) I thought perhaps it would fit still at two days shy of 12 weeks pregnant
c) I had no other options at that moment and didn't want to regret returning it
d) I was stinkin' unsure what to do

The end of the week was my son's Mother's Day Tea at school. He requested I wear the new dress since it was so pretty. I squeezed my feet into the one pair of shoes that matched (I thereby discovered that ALL my nice shoes no longer fit after having two babies...yes, that means more shopping, which oddly enough I do not enjoy), and thus became the most dressed up mom at the tea. I liked the dress that day, though it was not so comfy sitting in the kindergarten chairs.

As the weeks have progressed, so has my size. Just a bit. Not for the average person to see, but for my clothes to be just a bit tighter. For the "sucking it in" not to work or feel remotely okay. For the shape more than anything to begin adjusting. For that kinda poochy stage to kick in (versus real showing). For the beautiful dress not to fit.

Where does that leave me?
Yeah, stressing over a dress at the last minute, with two children in tow, not just one, since school is out. And suddenly realizing that we have a rehearsal dinner I need clothing for as well as the wedding.

I did actually find a dress at another consignment shop today (I'm a sucker for those places with great prices and clothes always pre-washed, no shrinking save poor laundry skills, though I do shop new as needed, too). Light blue, linen, knee-length, sleeveless, and roomy enough not to look peculiar with a funky bulge (for a whopping $6.50 since it was half price, thank you very much). Now, for rehearsal dinner clothes and shoes all around (watch, I'll spend all the money I just saved on one pair of shoes just to be done with it!). With two children in tow.

(I won't even think about the fact I still need to go choose glasses this weekend as well . . . shudder.)

19 June 2007

spilling the pee cup still wins first prize, but. . .

knocking over half the cute little container of syrup from my plate onto my dress definely wins second. I am so incredibly clumsy. And that was so incredibly sticky. Especially where it pooled next to my leg and then made my dress stick to me until I could go home and bathe a second time. The massive amounts on my wrist that made the watch stick like it was glued washed off with two rounds in the bathroom, at least. Otherwise, our Father's Day brunch really was quite lovely.

08 June 2007

the quiet in the house

A couple of days ago I was taking a late afternoon rest to ease the queasiness and exhaustion that usually overtakes me sometime before supper. I was not sleeping, just resting with a book; my bedroom is next to the living room and my favorite little people were peaceful and quiet. Every little bit I'd either haul myself up to see that all was well or ask Little B to please tell what Miss C was up to. When I say every little bit, I mean every five or ten minutes; my son was entranced in a book, my daughter in the secret hiding place behind the big chair in the corner, or tucked away in her room with toys--her location changed often, but "quiet" with my kids is usually not anything to worry about.

"Usually" is the operative word here. Miss C is definitely of the mischeivous, spunky sort.

My rest time ended when I asked Little B to please see where his sister had gone. In seconds he says, "Um, she's fingerpainting. On the counter."

My confession: I cannot seem to keep my kitchen counters clear. Cannot do it. This is probably one of my weakest spots. The dishes eventually get loaded, the laundry gets washed, the toilets only get so bad, the carpets do feel the stroke of the vacuum from time to time and the clutter that accumulates in my bedroom or on top of the tv either gets moved or dealt with sooner or later. But. The kitchen counters suffer. When I attempt to empty them and make them clear, they magnetize more stuff in less than a day. And there is always at least one corner spot that never gets cleared. I loathe it. But I have not figured out a system for the junk that calls it home. Pictures my kids draw, mail that lacks urgency but needs attention eventually, coupons I keep swearing off (typically for restaurants), piles and piles of this nonsense and other stuff. (May it stand on record that I am not solely responsible for the mess; I find toys and tools and other miscellaneous things that my dear family leaves by the wayside as well.)

So, my goal this week (well, over the weekend and into next week; I have to be realistic) needs to be clean counters. REALLY cleared off. My daughter is into things up there with her reaching and climbing. Gaining more counter space when we moved last year did NOT make my problem better. It grew. I need help.

Back to my daughter. My son had dressed her in her pretty pink dress earlier in the day (he has a thing for changing her clothes and leaving the various selections on the floor). She was using red finger paint. It says washable, but I have not finished that load of laundry, so I don't know if they're telling the truth yet. I am so very thankful he warned me that she was using fingerpaint because she chose the red tube. And she was very happily smearing it all over the counter, having glopped it onto various papers nearby as well as the dress, the chair, and the floor. Had she been crying, I'd have thought she was bleeding profusely and panicked. Instead, she gleefully squeezed out the last of it before I could get the tube away; actually, I had assumed it was already empty. I left her there while I moved papers, threw away the unsalvagable items, and wiped the areas nearby. I then proceeded to strip her down and carry her to the tub where Little B had made a bubble bath--with excessive amounts of bubbles, which thrilled her. While he watched over her safety, I finished cleaning up so she could not re-indulge once out of her bath. I must admit, though, I think that counter area would make a wonderful finger-painting surface that I would be able to wash rather than hang to dry. . .





05 June 2007

busy yesterday

Little B had his 6 year old well-check-up way too early in the morning yesterday. He did so, so good. First of all, we were told last year that all shots were finished until he's eleven, and since shots are full of trauma for him, that was a huge relief. Well, things changed. Of course. They now want a chicken pox booster shot and so he we talked to him about it for a bit and he was the bravest little boy on the planet. Not one tear during the shot (a few at the news of the shot, but not during!). A year ago, it took three people to hold him down and was an ugly scene. I was SO proud of him yesterday. Also, he passed his vision test, which he failed two years ago which resulted in seeing an eye doctor who told us to return this year. Well, we'll still return, but it's for "floaters" this time; my son sees spots all the time, apparently. This was news to me a couple weeks ago and I was just happy to have this check-up already set. At least I'm no longer inwardly panicking over possible annuerisms or anything freaky.

I was also supposed to have my first filling yesterday, but once my dentist realized I was only 8 weeks pregnant, he put it off until my 2nd trimester. While we're going to try it without a shot, he doesn't want that to change partway through while I'm still in the 1st trimester. That was just fine with me since I didn't really happen to be overly excited about the prospect. I was mostly worried about getting a round of nausea partway through, so I'm going to make the appointment for about halfway through the pregnancy since that is when my "morning sickness" typically abates, at least in my previous experience.

And, I had an ultrasound yesterday afternoon and saw my precious new baby. I forgot just how real it becomes the first time you see the little bean shaped thing with a heartbeat pounding to beat the band. Life is so beautiful. My son was quite tickled because he got to see a video of the ultrasound and as always was full of awe. Now, we'll be pulling out the video of his ultrasounds as well as Miss C's.

So, it was a busy crazy day and I was completely beat by the end of it. Today, I've been too wiped out (and nauseated) to go take care of essential things like buy toilet paper (not to worry, we should make it to the end of the week) and groceries (well, I don't care for much food these days but my family may start to get annoyed soon if there is nothing to eat, huh? Shoot. . .).

01 June 2007

my cup spilleth over

I had my first OB visit yesterday for this pregnancy.
I'd been feeling tired and "icky", so my father drove me while my mother watched the kids. They're wonderful that way; I think I'll keep them.

Just when I needed to walk out the door my phone rang. It was the doctor's office asking to move my appointment 45 minutes later since he had two women in labor. (One was still pushing when I arrived; poor thing, I wonder who was with her since I had my appointment and there were several women in the waiting room and the midwife in the practice was on vacation. . .) I spent the extra time Miss C down for a nap; only half the baby-sitting for Grandma this way.

You know how it goes at any appointment, first they weigh you and then for OB you have to pee in a cup. So, there I am, purse and water bottle across the small room, next to the door, since there is no hook or shelf to set them on, awkwardly holding this paper cup with my name, now half full of pee and wondering if there is any way they could make this more awkward. Immediately, I recalled trying to feel where the cup was at the end of my previous pregnancies since you surely can't see over the big belly. As I reminded myself, that yes, it will be more awkward before it's all over, I spilled the cup of pee.

Now, when I say I spilled the cup of pee, I mean half of it's contents sloshed over my arm, and split between the floor and my clothing. There was quite a puddle on the floor--you'd think I had not made it to the toilet--and my shirt had a large spot. When I looked down, it was on my thighs, my underwear, my pants in several indiscreet spots. I surely looked like I peed in my pants. I sat there, wondering what on earth to do and wished I had a change of clothes like I carry for my daughter.

I felt completely trapped with pee all over me and the floor and a wet cup that really needed to be put in the little metal trap door next to me. I wiped the cup down and took care of sending it on its way first. Then began using toilet paper to mop up myself and the commode and the floor and even my clothes (that was pretty ineffective). I nearly clogged the toilet with the extra tissue. I really didn't want to explain that as well.

Thankfully, I know to laugh at myself. I was cracking up when I stepped out and saw the nurse and ultrasound tech and told them what happened. I told the doctor later and even the lady who drew my blood (I felt obligated since I had to sit in her chair and I had almost-dry pee on me).

Graceful, aren't I? hahahaha!

31 May 2007

evening out

Last night, my husband and I went out for an incredibly rare evening without kids. When I say rare, I mean once or twice a year if that.

We had gift certificates to the movies (a place we never spend money) and saw Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End. I loved it. (I must confess, I knew something of how it ended since I convinced a friend to spoil a few details.) It was really good in my opinion. I don't typically care for Disney's kid's movies as there are too many unnecessary innuendos, however, they do make relatively clean adult movies by contrast (yes, some suggestive things, but not as frequent as in the kid movies!).

And now, I just can't wait for it to come out on DVD because I have an obsession about watching movies with their subtitles. . .I catch more of what is said that way and I understand the plot better. Perhaps it has to do with being an avid reader, who knows. I just know that during this movie, there are lots of accents and rushed words with tons of background music, so reading it clarfies it for me.

Anyhow, we had a fabulous time in a completely uncrowded theater while my sister-in-law struggled with tired kids at bed time out of their normal routine. (The babysitting was part of her birthday present to her brother/my husband; I wonder how soon she'll offer again?)

29 May 2007

on morning sickness

Ooohhh. The nausea has kicked in. I mean, bad.

I have never been a thrower-upper, remembering one once or twice gagging over the toilet with one of my pregnancies (really getting sick is different, but I still don't puke as often as the average person). Instead, I typically have food aversions that evolve out of cravings. I wanted Mexican one week, now writing the words or driving by the restuarant tend to give me an awful sense in my stomach. I gagged in the car yesterday before lunch, but after driving past such a restaurant. I am forcing my eyes away from the words above so I won't think on it too much...for real.

This week, I made one of my family's favorite meals: "Stir-fry"...not in the traditional sense. It's ground meat (turkey or beef usually, browned with garlic and onion powders), rice, and veggies all put together with some soy sauce. The veggies change out by what's on hand, and way back before allergies in our house I made it with eggs and cheese, too. Anyhow, I could barely stomach a few bites. Everyone else devoured it. I was trying to decide if it was the seasoned oil I sauteed the veggies in or if I put too much soy sauce by accident. No one else seemed bothered, but I'm still bothered by the leftovers every time I open the refrigerator door. Swallow-swallow-closedoor-swallow.

Some mornings, I can get up and eat a decent meal; sometimes I can make a moderate lunch and get most all of it down; by dinner, I pick and force a bit in, then need to have the entire meal moved from my sight. Leftovers make me want to hurl. Food options are starting to run slim (chicken is exceptionally bad on my list). Oh, except pizza. That's been an old stand-by necessity from both pregnancies. (By my third trimester, I typically want it once a week.) And a few salty chips or pretzels help a tiny bit.

So, breakfast anyone? If I choose wisely (leftover pizza anyone?), I'll survive the next few hours since I didn't wake up feeling miserable. That's a good sign for the first part of the day. Man, I'd forgotten how bad this could be. Somehow, the first week or two of feeling pretty good tricked me into thinking this pregnancy wouldn't make me so sick. haha! It got me.