Thursday, September 30, 2010

once upon a time

Way back in July, I marked a few things off the ol' Life List--visiting a new state (Minnesota) and a new ballpark (in, um, Minnesota). Because things got pretty crazy in August and September, I've totally neglected blogging about this.

So July 15-19. I traveled up to Minnesota with my MIL and SIL. We flew into Minneapolis and then drove on up to Pine River. It's a small, quaint little town with two motels. We chose the better one. They had a Dairy Queen and a farmer's market. We visited both. The main reason we went up this far north into the state was so that we could drive up to where my MIL spent summers as a kid. She hadn't been in a very long time and my SIL and I had never been.

One of the numerous lakes in Minnesota is Lake Ponto. It's small and quiet and has just a few lake houses on each side. We visited the house that my MIL's grandfather had built and talked to the next-door neighbors. Things were very much like my MIL remembered, and it was great to be able to see this part of the family history. We took a lot of pictures and enjoyed our time there.

The second reason we made the trip was to visit some extended family members in Minneapolis. Before we headed there, however, we had to make a few small detours to see Paul Bunyan and Babe as well as the World's Largest Ball of Twine.

These family members were kind enough to let us stay in their beautiful home for the second part of our trip. They were so nice and hospitable. We had fantastic breakfasts and got a little tour of the city. They took us out to eat at some great restaurants and were just nice to visit with. I think the best part of the trip was that it turned into a ladies weekend. There was good girl talk and lots of talk about other family members and family history. I feel like I got to know everyone so much (more). And got to know where my husband came from. It was also good to just be able to spend some time with my in-laws without Hubby there. Nice to work on our relationships separate from the relationships he has with them.

And, like I mentioned, we also got to go to a Twins game. The ballpark is new, open air, and really nice. It was pretty chilly and overcast when we got there (most of the trip was chilly--in JULY) but the sun came out and burned me. The life of a redhead... We had good seats in the outfield. Is it bad that I don't remember a lot of details now? Freakin' baby brain... Three things, though. One, parking at a ballpark has never been easier. You literally exit the freeway into the garage that is connected to the field. Two, the side of the parking garage is visible from the field so they fancied it up a bit. The side of the structure was covered in these small, reflective metal pieces that moved in the breeze. It was really mesmerizing. I should have taken video. And, three, the "races" that they do on the jumbo-tron at Target Field (of course I liked the place), were between Babe and 2 Target characters. What did they race around? Only everything we'd seen--lakes, woods, Paul n Babe, and the GIANT BALL OF TWINE. We were very amused.

Minnesota? Beautiful. Hopefully some of these pictures will make up for my lack of memory details.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

we interrupt the regularly scheduled program...

You know, of no mid-week posting, to bring you this. If you haven't already seen it floating around the blogosphere, there was a meeting of a bunch of lovely ladies recently. They were working on their life lists and goals and dreams and whatnot. You can read about it here and here and here.

One of the things the ladies were asked to do, is to pick 5 things off their life list that they would really work on in the coming year. And then ask for help making one of them happen. You can join in, too.

Here are my five:
  1. Have a child. (And because that one may cause many of the others on my list to be delayed a bit...)
  2. Find the perfect mac n cheese recipe (still working on this one).
  3. And the perfect coconut cream pie recipe.
  4. Become a confident swimmer.
  5. Write a letter to a different person each week for a year.

How about you? Goals? Dreams? Ability to help me with any of these--mainly 2 & 3?

Saturday, September 25, 2010

week 23

Total weight gain: About 16.5 pounds.

Movement: No more flutterings. There are full-on movements. Towards the end of this week you can generally see them happening. This morning was the first punch (or kick or headbutt) that actually hurt me a little. But very entertaining.

Cravings: I can't think of anything from this week. Maybe Reese's Peanut Butter cups. Sooo good.

Crazy dreams, baby brain, forgetfulness, just a tad more emotional. No additional leg cramps. No swelling even with 5 flights this week.

Belly button:
I think it's slightly more shallow but still really deep. I wonder if I have an abnormally deep belly button? Still cracks me up that it's so obviously an innie even when I have 2 layers of maternity clothes covering it.

Preparations: Since I was gone all week, not a lot of progress. Yesterday I bought a few items I needed to get a few more projects done. I've repainted a second lamp and got new lampshades. Bought shelf liner for inside the old dresser we're repurposing (but haven't painted the dresser yet). I have blessedly more at-home time now so I hope to get a lot accomplished.

Hubby got to feel the baby move for the first time. It was making me a little crazy that you could finally feel/see him/her move from the outside but I was never in the same city as Hubby when this happened.

Weekly wisdom: Take time for yourself. This stint of being on the road was way too long. Very glad I had the forethought to take yesterday off, schedule lunch with a friend, and book a massage and facial. Very sorely needed. And during the massage? I could lay on my stomach on top of this weird pregnant lady massage cushion thing. Heaven. Oh! And also? Got a tip from a 32-week lady on the plane. Go to the beach and dig a hole for your belly in the sand. Can lay on your belly that way, too. Freakin' awesome.

Belly pics. And just so you don't think they are all of me looking sweet and maternal and whatnot...

Maybe now that crazy travel has eased up, I'll actually post more than once a week. I'm very behind on several topics.

(Papaya courtesy of

Saturday, September 18, 2010

week 22

Total weight gain: About 16 pounds. Broke into a number I've never seen before in the tens place...

Movement: Daily flutterings. Sometimes you can see them happening. Very subtle from the outside but stronger on the inside.

Cravings: Not much this week. After I got my hair cut yesterday I was lured in by the smell of nachos.

Crazy dreams, baby brain, forgetfulness, side stitches (usually from not being able to change positions). For the first time I had those pesky nighttime leg cramps. They weren't really what I was expecting. Just one calf, cramped pretty strongly. I had read various ways people got rid of them but the best and easiest (especially if you're traveling solo) is to just point your toes up toward your shin (the opposite of the ballerina toe point). It hurts to force yourself to do this but then immediately relieves the cramp. I wish all pain were so easily remedied (for me at least). Another first is that I had a little swelling in my feet after my flight home from Miami. Went away by getting off of them but this doesn't make me super excited for the San Diego trip this week (except that I love San Diego and am very much looking forward to the cooler weather).

Belly button:
No change. Formerly pregnant ladies, did yours pop out? If so, did it go back in post-baby? I can't believe I've never asked anyone that before.

Preparations: I rearranged some things in the nursery. Hung some art. Have finished the quilt except for the binding. Almost finished the valances. Started painting some shelves but finished the picture frames. Honestly, it's just exciting to see a few things in place in the room. Bebe (who may be called Bubbles now because of tacky, juvenile jokes from his/her parents) also got a few super cute articles of clothing from his/her aunty. Said aunty pointed out that there is no gender-neutral name for niece/nephew, no category (like son/daughter can be "child" or brother/sister can be "sibling"). So Bebe/Bubbles is the niece-phew. Finally, I got some maternity pants in the mail from katielady. Huge thanks to her! Work pants! Jeans! Capris! Cords! Looking forwards to wearing them. (Actually, wore one pair last night and packed another for the week.)

So much for believing it is obvious to people that I'm pregnant. If you know me, it seems like you can tell but if you didn't know me before you would be surprised to hear I'm 22 weeks along. New co-workers couldn't believe it this week. But they were all very nice and chatty (in mostly happy ways) about pregnancy. It was nice.

Weekly wisdom: When people find out that you're pregnant, they will ask you when you're due, what you're having, if it's your first baby, what you're naming the baby, and how you've been feeling. This is all fine and good. I don't mind answering any of those questions (even though some do not have very satisfying answers at this point). I say come up with something creative. "What's been your favorite part about pregnancy?" "Any fun baby brain stories?" (That one is particularly entertaining because I think everyone has them.) If you can think of anything else creative, let me know.

Two bonus things. 1) The fruit analogy is now applying to multiple weeks at a time. Papaya will be around for two more weeks. And 2) bonus picture of Hubby and Maggie. This is how she curled up next to him. She loves her some daddy.

Well, I'm off yet again today (and by "off" I of course mean "leaving" instead of "not working"). At least for a few days I'll be gone for leisure. Then gone for work. Will finally get home on Thursday. I can't tell you how much I'm looking forward to that (and not just because Friday=day off, facial, and massage).

(Papaya courtesy of

Saturday, September 11, 2010

week 21

Total weight gain: Fortunately, the large weight gain hasn't become a trend. Back to the one pound increase (bringing us to about 15...).

Movement: Daily flutterings. Usually more than once a day. I do like the constant reminder that there's someone in there but I'm looking forward to movements that outsiders can feel, too. (I know. I'll be wishing these days were back once bebe is keeping me awake with punching and kicking.)

Cravings: Finally got the Paula Deen Hashbrown Casserole. Praise tiny baby (southern) Jesus. Have also been craving the sweet tea. And fruit.

Symptoms: Crazy dreams and baby brain continue. Forgetfulness. You know, these dreams aren't just crazy. They seem to also be non-stop. That makes me a little nuts because it doesn't feel like I'm getting rest since I'm so busy while sleeping. I've also been tired (between the dreaming and the working). And I've had the feeling of side stitches a few times but it's not like I'm jogging when I get them. Posture seems even more important the bigger I get.

Belly button: No change.

Preparations: I've made tons of quilt progress. And I picked the world's wettest day (or actually the day before the wettest day) to paint some picture frames (outdoors, with good ventilation). They all still need another coat. Perhaps this weekend. And I found and purchased a rug. Finally! It's super cute and luckily matches the other colors pretty well (ordered it online so I was taking a bit of a chance there). I can't wait to see the room come together. Went to Target yesterday and added some things to the registry. There are some cute gender-neutral things. Promise.

Milestones: I believe it is obvious to people that I'm pregnant. Co-workers and strangers alike have commented this week. Just yesterday I had someone jokingly say "are you getting fat?" and another point at my belly and ask "is that a baby?" I've been wanting to deny it to tease people but I can't when put on the spot. Also, I feel bad for folks who take even longer to show. Somehow it seems a little more real when it's a visible condition.

Weekly wisdom: I say whatever you're feeling about the pregnancy at any given time is fine. Happy today? Freaked out five minutes later? Not really thinking it's real (despite all evidence to the contrary)? Eh, it's a huge life change (not to mention hormonal roller coaster). And don't they say change is good? ("They" obviously not being husbands.)

No pics this week as I'm lazy. Monday starts my super crazy travel blitz where I'm home only one day (including the weekend) and gone 10. I'll be in Miami, Dallas, San Diego and Dallas again before coming home. I've already booked a massage and a facial as a reward for surviving all that.

(Banana courtesy of

Saturday, September 04, 2010

week 20

Total weight gain: Uh, it looks like I've gained 14 lbs. Whatever I didn't gain last week, I apparently made up for this week. Hmm...

Movement: Flutterings, flutterings, flutterings. Mostly only noticeable when I'm getting ready to drift off to crazy dreamland.

Cravings: Still haven't gotten that Paula Deen Hashbrown Casserole. Perhaps tomorrow. And I've wanted sweets. Thus the weight gain?

Symptoms: Crazy dreams and baby brain continue. Forgetfulness.

Belly button: No change.

Preparations: I've worked on the quilt and the valances. Finally figured out how to problem solve the mess I had made of them. And I started our registries. Oooh, ahhh. I couldn't stop giggling over the cuteness of the tiny clothes. Even when looking online. And I scheduled family (me, baby bump, Hubby, Maggie) portraits for late October. Hopefully the belly will be more evident in 7 weeks.

More nursery sneak peeks...

Milestones: Um, we're halfway, people. Crazy! (Please note that the shorts below--which I swear are shorts--are really pinstriped. Not some crazy psychedelic thing (like my dreams).)

Weekly wisdom: With work, I generally have 1-3 months between site visits these days. That means this weight gain should be pretty obvious. I mean, 10-15 pounds? Yeah, not everyone even notices. My tip for the non-pregnant folks? DON'T sweat minor weight fluctuations. You're the only one who knows.

(Cantaloupe courtesy of