Monday, April 28, 2014

food and friends and the best kind of weekend

Our weekend was pretty awesome. Friday I came home from work to a message from Will that he'd decided to go to Ikea and pick up the dresser for the nursery. Praise the Lord for another thing marked off of the to-do list. I also knocked something off the list with a stop at the mall to pick out a lamp. I couldn't decide, so I got three shades to try at home. We had a quick dinner when he got home, and I watched and relaxed as Will got the dresser about 80% complete. Perfect quiet end to a hectic work week.

On Saturday morning Will left the house early to help some friends of ours move, and I packed up the dogs and headed out for a morning of fun. Holly, Sadie, and I met three of my best friends and their pups at the bark park, and it was a blast. The weather was gorgeous and all the pups had a good time with each other and all the other park patrons. Even though we have a pretty good size yard, I like giving our doggies the chance to experience a new environment to sniff around in. I see many more mornings like this in our future this summer.

Happy dogs!

After dropping Holly and Sadie back at home, I met Will at our friend's new place to check it out. As expected, I loved the house, and am so so happy for them. Seeing all of our friends experience home ownership and marriage and pregnancy really makes life that much sweeter. Since their new home was close to the mall, we popped in to PB Kids to return the lamp shades that didn't work for us, and have a yummy lunch at Cheesecake Factory.

At this point we were both exhausted so we headed home to enjoy some sun. By 6pm I was seriously beat so I headed upstairs to take a nap. That nap turned into a 13 hours of sleep, with one wake up around midnight that only lasted a few minutes. I don't care how great the second trimester is- pregnancy is no joke!

Sunday it was up bright and early again to head Downtown. Will and I laughed multiple times this week about our plans. Sunday Funday and weekend priorities sure to change when there's a baby on board, don't they? Our Downtown adventure included morning Mass at St. Peter in Chains Cathedral, breakfast at Taste of Belgium, and shopping at Findlay Market.

We came home, hung out on the deck for most of the day, grilled out, and I even took a little nap outside. Will was able to put together the rest of the dresser, and that about wraps it up.

I didn't get as much checked off the to do list as I would have liked, but it was a really relaxing weekend. The kind that makes me think all the brutal months of disgusting winter may actually be worth it. Happy (rainy, disgusting) Monday!

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Pregnancy Update: 22 Weeks

Posting this without a bump pic seems semi pointless, but I didn't want to skip another week. We have been crazy busy, and by the time I'd get around to picture taking tonight, I'd be basically already at 23 weeks. Fail, but what can you do?! As a substitute, this is what's going on in there right now.

How far Along: 22 weeks. I decided to skip the 21 week update because I didn't have much to say, and I neglected to take a picture. And frankly I was kind of getting on my own nerves with all the baby talk!

Size of Baby: We've hit the point where she isn't something new every week in each of my apps, but rather one fruit for a couple of weeks in a row. Right now we're about the size of an eggplant or spaghetti squash. She's measuring in at a foot long and weighs just over a pound.

Gender: Girl.

Weight Gain: Seriously, this is getting out of control. I've been eating a lot, but just until I'm full. And that has brought us to a whopping 16-17 pounds of weight gain. I really hope this doesn't continue or we're all in trouble.

Feeling: Still in the happy phase of pregnancy. It is absolutely harder to get around, bend over, etc., though. My belly button is a serious outtie, but that doesn't bother me much besides just being weird. Besides that, no major complaints.

Maternity Clothes: I wish I could trade every article of clothing in my closet for a maternity item for the next four months. I can't wear any non maternity pants unless they're elastic waist, and shirts are becoming an issue now too. Longer lengths are somewhat doable depending on the style, but I tried on three shirts this morning before I found one that would fit over the bump. I know I still have a lot of growing to do in that area, so I need to buy more maternity tops for sure. And some shorts since our weather is FINALLY warming up.

Nursery: In addition to the painting, crib assembly, and rocker assembly I last posted about, we now have her cubby shelving systems set up. I love it just as much as I thought I would! I know this piece of furniture will grow with her forever.

Movement: Finally, I can answer this the way I've been wanting to for weeks. We have a little mover and shaker on our hands. I have only felt a few movements that I consider super strong, or longer lasting, but beggars can't be choosers. I feel a ton of little flutters all throughout the day, and I love the constant reminder or little girl is OK in there. A lot of these flutters come after I eat. Looks like she may be just like her momma and love food.

Symptoms: Having difficulty walking for long periods of time, bending over, and just being less nimble overall. Serious belly button protrusion. Starting to get tired a little earlier. Definitely more emotional lately too.

Sleep: Great. I sleep through the night, like a rock. I almost wish I'd wake up though because I wake up in the mornings almost in pain from having to pee so bad! At my last ultrasound the tech could barley believe how full my bladder was, and I didn't even feel like I had to use the bathroom, so apparently I can hold a lot of liquid.

Cravings: Still nothing too intense. Favorite snacks lately include cold cereal, oatmeal, fruit, and milk.

What I Miss: Being able to fit everything in my closet.

Best Moment This Week: VIsiting with my Mom and sisters. Will and both my sisters getting to feel a little kick from the outside.

Looking Forward To: Our 24 week appointment which Will gets to attend. Hoping baby girl is a little more cooperative for this ultrasound than she was the last.

Thankful For: Getting closer to the home stretch. That my body and mind have held up pretty well thus far, and that we're all happy and healthy!

Friday, April 18, 2014

5 on Friday- random updates for a 3 day weekend

It's been some time since I wrote a 5 on Friday post. Since I'm off work today, I decided to get back in on the action and share 5 randoms things going on in my world today. Linking up with Natasha. Lets get to it!

1. Family Time

I am currently typing away from the guest bedroom of my Mom's house in Chicago! Since I had a three day weekend, I decided to skip town and spend a couple of days with my Mom and sisters. The last time I saw them, we'd just found out I was pregnant, so this is their first time meeting the bump. Last night we caught up over dinner, and the rest of the weekend will be filled with shopping and just spending time together. I am hoping to make it back to Ohio on Sunday in time for brunch with Will's side of the family.

The tired eyes of a pregnant lady after working for 5 hours, then driving for another 5.

I absolutely love getting to spend any time with my family I can, but I have to say, I really will miss my hubby (who is not off work today) these few days. It seems like as soon as he got back from his work trip, I was leaving for this trip. With crazy work weeks, our weekends are so important to us, so it stinks missing out on one. Such is life with family spread all over the country!

2.Nursery Decisions

While we've gotten most of the big decisions made in this arena, I cannot decide on a dresser for the life of me. I know I want it to be white, and I know I want it to be long enough to act as the changing table. Besides that, anything is fair game. I didn't want to spend an arm and a leg on this item considering I may or may not want to use it in the future in Norah's big girl room, but that may be out of my hands. I am hoping to possibly find something today that will be in boxes small enough for me to take back to Ohio myself. Wish me luck!

Another silly thing I can't decide on is what type of lettering I want to but in baby's room. This will be going above either her crib, dresser, or cubby shelving system. I am torn between..

… a single large print initial, which I'd probably get the version that has knobs at the bottom in case you want to use it as a hook


… a large script initial

… or a script monogram

So many choices! Input is much appreciated :) And don't even get me started on a color choice for these things. Thinking pale pink, aqua, or white, depending on what wall I decide to put it on. All of these options are from Pottery Barn Kids.

A lamp and rug are the final two things throwing me for a loop, but I think I am going to hold off on selecting those until we have everything else finished.

3. Registry

Holy cow. Talk about an undertaking. I actually wasn't super overwhelmed with the registry process, but it was pretty tedious. I am hoping I didn't forget anything too major, and am banking on the fact that most of my showers will be attended by women with children, who will know what I need.

I've been scouring the blog world for recommendations, and I think I have a good list going. What are/were your must have registry items? I don't want to miss anything!

4. 19 Things You Have to Explain to Out-of-Towners about Cincinnati.

I love this list. It is so true, and made me laugh quite a few times. I have definitely had to explain these things to people a time or two. Lists like this are all over the internet I know, but I love stumbling across them every single time. While the weather has me seriously considering a move south at least once or twice a season, I really do love the 513 and feel blessed to have found a city where I really feel at home.

5. Baby Wise

Has anyone else read this? Practiced what it teaches? I'm about 1/4 of the way in, and I was not expecting the intensity of this book.

I so far am mostly on board with the recommendations, and I've heard good things, so I am hoping I can retain all of this information and be disciplined enough to use the methods with Norah. If anyone is willing to share their experiences with this or other sleep training methods, I'd love to hear them.

That's all she wrote folks. I hope you enjoy the next few days with family and friends as much as I know I will. Happy Easter weekend!

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Tear Jerker Video Alert! The hardest job in the world.

No real explanation needed. So excited to be a member of this club. You truly never think about these things until you are in the role yourself. Thanks Moms (and Dad)!

Monday, April 14, 2014

weekend recap + some

This was one of those weekends that I absolutely did NOT want to end. I'm sure it has a lot to do with the gorgeous weather and 70-80 degree temperature after what has quite literally been the worst winter of my entire life, but there's more to it than that.

On Friday, I came home to a shipment of maternity clothes I'd ordered earlier in the week. Hallelujah for pants that fit! And we finally painted the nursery. After some research on the safety of pregnant women painting, I decided to help out so we could knock it out in one night. I actually find painting relaxing, and the control freak in me loved contributing to this part of our little girl's room. That being said, I won't be painting any more rooms while pregnant. The smell wasn't super pleasant, it was hard bending and moving around with the belly, and by the end of the night, I felt like I'd run a marathon. I crashed hard around 11:00pm. I am in love with the colors we chose!

Saturday was just as lovely, but just as exhausting. Will and I both were up bright and early. He headed out to get some supplies to work on the yard, and patch a hole that Sadie had dug in the wall of the laundry room. I won't get too in to this disaster, but let's just say her fear of storms is stronger than her value for our laundry room wall, or her own paws for that matter. Anyway, off he went to take care of that, while I got ready for a full day of appointments and errands. I met my friend Christie Downtown for facials at Paragon and lunch at Taste of Belgium.

Both of these events truly deserve posts of their own. This was my second facial at Paragon, and while it was great the first time around, yesterdat was heaven for this pregnant lady. Quite, warm bed, massage, relaxing oils. I could have stayed for hours. I am seriously considering splurging on a full spa day at some point in this pregnancy. It was my first time at Taste of Belgium, and I could eat there every meal for the rest of my life. I could have done without the earth shattering construction noise that was going on literally feet away from our outdoor table, making it impossible to hear the person next to you, but hey, it was 70 degrees and I was stuffing my face. So I was able to get past that. After lunch I picked up a few things for Norah's nursery, and had the invitations printed for a wedding shower I'm helping host for my best friend.

 sample | via

After all this, it was only maybe 2pm. Talk about a full morning! When I got home, yard work had taken place, and the hole was patched, so it had been a good day. The whole neighborhood was buzzing. People getting new landscaping, kids playing. I don't care what anyone says, I love the suburbs. I cleaned up the nursery and we hung the curtains as a last act of productivity for the weekend. The rest of the evening was spent at home, and I crashed again hard around 10pm. I clearly don't know when to call it a day, because I was literally exhausted to the point of a headache and nausea by bed time. Too much excitement in 24 hours.

But Sunday. Today really, as I am writing this Sunday night, was absolutely glorious. Heaven. I actually just teared up because I don't want this almost perfect day to end. As soon as I woke up, Will headed off to church to catch the early Mass, and the dogs and I hit the back deck. After deciding it was way too nice to spend any time indoors, I watered the flowers, opened all the windows in the house, and took my Baby Wise book and coffee out back.

I came in long enough to make breakfast just as Will was getting home from church, and we ate together on the deck. Then we just sat for a little while longer. I cannot explain the joy that is being a new(ish) home owner, and just enjoying the house you have put blood, sweat, and tears in to to make it a home. There truly is nothing better. Except maybe that on the first hot weekend of the year, while pregnant with your first child who you can't wait to meet, with two dogs and a husband you love more than you know how to express. The whole thing, it just really is/was too much.

So much so that I am dreading Monday even more than usual. And it's supposed to storm, so I'm hoping I don't come home to any more holes in the wall.

I think one of the main reasons (again, besides the weather after snowpocalypse 2013-2014) this weekend was so emotionally charged for me is that I really feel like I am half we through this pregnancy. Shower plans are starting. The nursery is coming together. I look and feel pregnant. It is so real, and I am so ready. There is so much yuck out in the world, it makes me at least a trillion times more grateful for my little life that we choose to live so happily and fully. I cannot wait to bring our little princess into this world and share these beautiful moments with her. 19 weeks (ish) to go!

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Timehop + Why I blog

If you don’t have the timehop app, I suggest you download it immediately. It will look back at your Facebook and Instagram accounts and tell you what you were doing this day or this week any number of years ago. The other day it reminded me of an album I’d posted seven years ago. Yikes! Blast from the past that was.

Anyway, it is perfect for bloggers. Isn’t the ability to look back in time and reflect on our lives one of the main reasons most of us blog? Today timehop reminded me of a status I’d posted three years ago.

Three years is not that long in the scheme of things. Though a lot can happen in 36 months, it’s not that much time. It’s less time than we spend in high school or college. Less time than I’ve had Facebook. Less time than I’ve known most of my friends. But three years ago, April 2011, I didn’t know my husband (we met in September 2011). So this particular three years has been big for me. The status update that I posted three years ago this week went like this

“No person or event will ever convince me that my life will turn out anything but wonderful J We all suffer in our own way, but If you keep faith and act accordingly, anything is possible. Remember this: Love yourself, others will love you too. Disrespect yourself: others will too.”

Who really knows what was going on in my life or my head that week. All I can remember is being conflicted about finishing school and starting the work force, still getting over my last break up, and trying to decide what the heck I was going to do with the rest of my life. I am proud of myself for having that outlook though, and I am proud that it is something I still believe and try to follow. Life is not perfect. Life is actually really depressing (for a lot of people, not all people) and hard when you think about it. BUT, if you think about the good in people and the good in the world, it is enough to outweigh all of the bad and the horrible things that are out in the universe. I am a Christian, and I believe in God’s plan, but I also believe in “the universe” and energy and that you get back what you put out into the world. I’m not an expert on religion or karma but I am 110% sure that if you expect life to suck, it will. And that if you expect each day to be fabulous, it will be.

The other day I was going through some emails from five or so years ago, trying to find a particular message. I came across an email exchange between me and my boyfriend at the time. Now I don’t talk to this particular individual very frequently anymore. I’m pretty sure his full time job is jet setting between LA and NY to go to raves. Don’t ask me how that’s a paying career, but apparently for some people it is. Anyway, though we don’t talk, I harbor no ill feelings toward him, and our relationship was pretty fulfilling as far as relationships in your late teens/early twenties go. In this exchange, I was expressing my feelings about how he basically wasn’t meeting my standards for what a boyfriend should be. His response was that perhaps my standards were too high, that is was the 21st century, and I needed to stop expecting to be treated like a princess.


I should have known we were doomed from that statement. I am here to tell you, that if anyone tells you you are not a princess, you should run the other direction. Thankfully, I didn’t believe him. I knew that if I was a good person, and good student and employee, a caring citizen, and most of all, a loving, loyal, supportive partner to my spouse- that I could in fact find someone that would treat me like a princess. And I did. I truly feel sorry for the individual mentioned above, and I hope he learns how to treat his future girlfriends, or he is in for a sad lonely existence.

My point is, this is why I blog. So I have the ability to look back. So I can laugh at my past self for silly decisions, and also pat my past self on the back for the smart decisions, and sticking to my guns. I blog so I can share these notes one day with my sisters (only one of them reads this blog occasionally- probably quite boring for teenagers at this point), or my daughter (EEK!!), and they will hopefully learn from my mistakes. I may never have 1,000 followers or get 100 of comments, but I know somewhere someone is reading, and hopefully learning something. And I know I am putting positivity out into the world, that will one day come back to me. Just like it always does J

Happy Thursday people!

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Pregnancy Update: 20 weeks

Not sure why I look so orange here, but we're going to go with it.

Size of Baby: Baby girl is the size of a banana. At our 20 week appointment (19 weeks 5 days at the time) she weighed in at 11 ounces, which is in the 46th percentile.

Gender: Little mini me, a girl!

Weight Gain: Weighing in at a total gain of 13 pounds. YIKES. That is quite the jump from where I was just a couple of weeks ago. Overall though, it’s right where I need to be, so I’m not getting worried just yet.

Feeling: Pretty good this week. Some aches and pains, but nothing close to the horror that was all day nausea.

Maternity Clothes: Getting desperate in this department. I can barely fit comfortably in any of my regular pants, so I think I’ll be ordering more maternity pants soon. Thank goodness it’s warming up and I can wear dresses.

Nursery: We were going to paint this past weekend, but Sherwin Williams is having a 40% off sale this coming weekend, so we're going to wait on that. I know it’s smart considering paint isn’t really cheap, but I have to admit I was a little disappointed in the delay. On the bright side, we got the glider and crib put together and the chandelier hung in the time Will would have spent painting. Slowly but surely, it's coming along!

Movement: We’re getting there. I have a time or two a day that I can really feel the flutters, and they will last for a minute or two. Easily my favorite time of the day. I tried to see if Will could feel them, but no luck yet. Can’t wait until they get stronger. Baby now has a sleep schedule, so I’m trying to be more in tune to that.

Symptoms: I read something about lightning crotch a while back, and I’m pretty sure I’ve got it. Whatever it is, it hit me like a ton of bricks the other day at work, literally. It felt like someone was slamming me in the you know what with a ton of bricks every time I took a step. All day this past Friday I was walking around like someone 40 weeks pregnant the way I had to waddle and walk so slowly. It continued for the rest of the day, but hasn’t been back thank goodness. I took a bath that night (my OB’s office told me it was fine) and it felt so amazing. Can’t believe I’ve been avoiding the bath so long! 

Sleep: Still not able to stay up very late, but sleeping great when I do get to bed. Still loving my bump nest pillow.

Cravings: Loving ice cream as a “snack” or treat in the evenings, but no “I need it and I need it now” cravings.

What I Miss: Really not a thing. The no drinking hasn’t been ideal, but no where near is tough as I thought it would be. I do slightly miss being able to move around like I used to. I can’t bend over for long periods of time and it’s getting more and more uncomfortable getting down on the ground to wipe the dogs paws or tie my shoes.

Best Moment This Week: Making nursery progress, feeling Norah move around a bit, and a having a good 20 week appt. We had a test run for spinabifida since there is a case in our family, and thankfully it was negative. We weren’t able to get a full report because little miss wouldn’t cooperate with the ultrasound tech and all the views she needed, so we have to go back in a few weeks. From what they could see though, she looks great.

Looking Forward To: Getting the nursery painted, warmer weather, and being another week closer to meeting our baby girl.

Thankful For: This is pretty much the same every week. My husband, our family, and a healthy pregnancy. Hope the next 20 weeks are as great as the past 20 have been. So excited to meet our little girl!

Friday, April 4, 2014

The calm before the storm.

**Today we are officially 20 weeks! Yay for the half way point!**

Where did the first third of this year go? I am BEYOND happy to see freezing temperatures leave us behind. And while I’m also more than ready for better weather, long weekends, celebrations, and all the other wonderful things that come along with summer, I’m a little bit scared at the same time.

The month of April is truly going to be the calm before the storm for me this year. And that’s if your idea of calm is working full time, planning for a baby, prepping to be in one (maybe two) weddings this summer, all while being pregnant. Which luckily, for me, that’s calm.

The storm will really hit come May. My list of “things” for the fifth month of the year include:

Will’s birthday
My best friend’s wedding shower, which we’re throwing at my home
Our 1st wedding anniversary
The start of tri-weekly prenatal check ups
Mother’s Day

June will bring us:

My Birthday
One, probably two, of my baby showers
My best friend’s bachelorette party
The start of bi-weekly prenatal check ups
Father’s Day
Any and all final baby prep

August holds:

Parenting/Birthing classes
My Dad’s birthday
THREE of my best friend’s birthdays
Norah’s arrival date

Throw in baseball games, hospital tour, cook outs, family get togethers, and whatever other things pop up, and this is going to be one amazing, but exhausting summer. All this really means to me, is that over the next four weeks I have to find a really good balance. A balance between relaxing, down time, mentally preparing myself for all to come, nursery planning, house organizing, and making sure we have everything in order for a smooth delivery and bringing home baby experience.

Summer, I’m ready for you!

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Pregnancy Update: 19 weeks

Linking up this week with Mama and Mou

Size of Baby: This week we're looking at a mango or a grapefruit. I love that she is growing bigger and stronger at a faster pace these days.

Gross bathroom selfie. I WILL get back to using the tripod and real camera next week.

 Gender: Baby girl.

Weight Gain: Up about 10 pounds. Since the recommended weight gain is 25 pounds (ish) for me, and that is what my Mom gained with 2 of her 3 pregnancies, I think I'm right on track. My Mom gained something like 50 pounds with her third pregnancy. So crazy how each pregnancy can differ so much, even for the same woman. And my sisters are just 15 months apart!

Feeling: Great overall. I few aches and pains here and there, but for the most part, I really feel like I'm back to "normal".

Maternity Clothes: Wearing regular clothes is getting harder and harder. My tops are all slightly too short and none of my pants button unless they are super low rise. I don't love the belly band, so I've been wearing maternity clothes and sweats as much as possible. I cannot wait until it gets just a pinch warmer and I can just wear dresses.

And does anyone else hate the freaking belly band? I swear you can see right through it and it just looks like I have a bunch of extra fabric underneath my pants or something. You can clearly see my pants are undone, I think at least. I may be retiring this sooner rather than later.

Nursery: Loving how its all coming together. I just realized that come May I am going to be smacked in the face with events and to-do's, so I'm determined to get the majority of the nursery set up in April. Will is painting on Saturday, then it's game on. We have a few decorations purchased, a few things picked out to order, and the crib and glider arrived yesterday.

Movement: Definitely feeling little kicks or punches here and there, but nothing routine, and nothing that has been strong enough to really startle me. Looking forward to these movements getting stronger.

Symptoms: Tailbone and hip pain is really all I have to complain about this week.

Sleep: Trying to sleep on my left side as much as possible, which is touch when the dog thinks my bump nest is meant for her to snuggle in. She burrows between me and the pillow and while its really cute, and I can't blame her, it leaves me in the most awkward sleeping positions.

Cravings: Nothing of note, just always hungry in general. Coffee is finally tasting good again, and I'm happy to add this treat back into my diet.

What I Miss: Honestly, not a thing.

Best Moment This Week: Feeling little movements here and there.

Looking Forward To: Our 20 week dr appt and ultrasound tomorrow. Can't wait to see our girl on the screen again!

Thankful For: Making it so peacefully to the half way mark. We are happy, healthy, and excited. Can't wait to meet you Norah!
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