Archive for March, 2011

  • 39 Weeks

    Date: 2011.03.30 | Category: Baby, Mark, Me, Pregnancy | Response: 8

    3/30/11

    39 Weeks

    Oh baby, you’re big. And I think you’re making an earnest attempt to break my ribs. Though your movements in general have slowed down tremendously. You still move enough to let me know you’re ok, but they are just big nudges or rib shoves.

    Also, after you dropped I could breathe a lot better, but then you grew again so now I can’t. I find myself readjusting all the time in an attempt to get more air into my lungs.

    You’ve also started doing this thing your dad and I refer to as “the thumper.” I have no idea what you’re actually doing, but it feels like a rabbit thumping it’s feet really fast on my side. It makes my whole body shake. Considering you will be born in the “Year of the Rabbit,” I guess it’s fitting.

    We went to the doctor last Friday and all that progress you were making up and stopped. The doctor said you are still healthy and great, but she didn’t think you would make your appearance this week, which is ok because the doctor is out of town and your dad has been laid up in bed for almost six days with a sinus infection. I don’t think he would be the support champion he needed to be feeling like that.

    The doctor also told us she didn’t want you going past your due date very much, which means one way or another, if you haven’t made up your mind to come before then, you’ll be born next week. And I think you’re going to be a big baby…. over eight pounds like both your mom and your dad were. But that’s ok, a big baby is a healthy baby and I’m getting an epidural.

    Every day people call and ask if you’ve arrived. And every day we tell them “Not yet!” We think you’re going to hold out until your due date like both your parents did.

    So here we go baby. One last week like this and then you’ll be in my arms… well when you’re not in your daddy’s, grandmothers’, or aunties’ arms!

    Love, Mama

  • Sitting and Waiting.

    Date: 2011.03.28 | Category: Baby, Books, Food, Home, Mark, Pregnancy, Work | Response: 8

    Waiting is hard. Really really hard. Every time I have a twinge or pain, I focus in on it thinking, “Is this it? Is it time?”

    But without fail, the pains stop. Occasionally one will continue on to be a mild contraction, but that’s rare since the baby dropped. As of my doctor appointment on Friday, my progress has slowed down to a near halt. Turns out baby likes being in there and is not making any move to come out any time soon. She’s still moving plenty, though that’s slowed a little too.

    And now my doctor is out of town for the week.

    Oh and Mark has a sinus infection.

    So it would almost be better if she waited until her due date next Tuesday. That way my doctor would be back and hopefully Mark will feel better. (If it will ever rain! This pollen is killing everyone).

    Except I’m tired of being pregnant. I want to hold her, even if it means my sleep is going to go away for a while. At least when I sleep it will be on my back and stomach!

    This past weekend I made a conscious effort to enjoy time with no baby. Peace and quiet. I finished reading Kafka on the Shore (one awesome, weird book), watched a movie, thought about cooking, then called The Dinner Station and ordered meals to put in my freezer instead. I shopped at Target and bought a diaper pail and bouncy for the doorway. I slept in and relaxed. It was wonderful.

    And even though I’m anxiously anticipating her arrival. A huge part of me still feels like this isn’t real. There’s no way I’m going to be responsible for a tiny newborn in a week or so is there? Holding her, feeding her, bathing her. It just doesn’t seem real.

    Thank goodness for work. Otherwise I think I really would lose my mind!

    The final countdown has begun. 8 days.

    Unless of course she runs late… which she probably will.

    Grant me sanity.

  • Male Nesting?

    Date: 2011.03.24 | Category: Baby, Family, Life, Mark, Me, Pregnancy, Style | Response: 15

    I’ve been doing some reading and learned that sometimes men have sympathy pains for their pregnant wives. And while that may sound romantic, it’s actually kind of alarming sometimes. I mean, trust me, I can be crazy sometimes. Fortunately for Mark, his sympathy pains haven’t manifested themselves in the crazy bouts of crying format.

    He has, however:

    1.     Thrown up after eating maple syrup.

    2.     Been prone to bad cases of insomnia lately.

    3.     Gained roughly 10 pounds since this pregnancy started.

    4.     Been cleaning and organizing like crazy.

    Now, the maple syrup could have been bad (I certainly thought it smelled horrible); and the insomnia is most likely the result of the excessive pollen that coats everything right now and my own mid-night wanderings. Mark is a thin guy and I can’t tell he’s gained 10 pounds, but he’s been eating to keep up with me so no real surprise there.

    But the nesting? Now that’s different and absolutely wonderful. He has taken to the outside of the house like a whirlwind. He repaired the lawn mower and put new gasoline and oil in everything. And then he started on the lawn. Our bushes are trimmed to the point that you could put a level on them and that little bubble would rest squarely between the lines. He’s cut giant branches down with this saw on the end of a stick so that the giant oak in the back yard no longer fights with our antenna during thunder storms. And he’s mowed, edged, weed-eated and blown the grass twice a week for two weeks now.

    (For you northerners, Spring has definitely sprung here in the south. It got up to 86 yesterday and the azaleas are in full bloom, so mowing the lawn is definitely in order).

    And then of course he’s been scrubbing his truck down, only to have it coated with that green pollen sheen the next morning.

    Our neighbor down the street, whose wife is expecting twin boys any day now, has rivaled Mark in his outside cleaning endeavors. So I wonder, are they nesting? Or are they just trying to catch a break from us  nine-month-plus crazy pregnant ladies? Either way, I’ll take it.

    In other news, I have apparently swallowed a watermelon and am reduced to wearing swaths of cloth for shirts.

    38w2d

    I wear a shrug over this at work, but dang it’s hot outside and sleeveless shirts are definitely in order.

  • 38 Weeks

    Date: 2011.03.22 | Category: Baby, Me, Pregnancy, Work | Response: 9

    3/22/11

    38 Weeks

    That’s right, I’ve been pregnant with you for 9 and a half months now. Your due date is still officially two weeks away and I feel like there is no way you can get any bigger (but, oh, I know you will).

    Perhaps the biggest development of the week is the fact that you “dropped,” thereby allowing me to breathe! It’s glorious. I can yawn and sleep again (well sort of). I feel so much better. Everyone at work has been commenting on how much lower you are now too. I hope that means you are just about ready for your grand entrance.

    Speaking of work, I can’t tell you how many people act shocked that I’m not on maternity leave yet. I mean, I feel pretty good, although tired. I can’t imagine sitting at home with nothing to do besides waiting on you to arrive. I think I would start losing my mind. But people seem genuinely surprised. I wonder if it’s common to just take your last month off? I don’t know… but I’d much rather spend my maternity leave with you little girl, so I’m going to keep on going to work until I can’t anymore.

    And oh the comments. “You haven’t had that baby yet?” “You look like you’re about to pop!” “There is no way you’re going to make it to your due date!” “Your baby already weighs seven pounds? Mine didn’t even weigh that much when she was born!” And my favorite from my Asian neighbor, “You must going to have BIG BABY!”

    Funny how people thought I was going to have a small baby for a long time and now they can’t keep quiet about how big you’re going to be. Most of the time I just let it go, it’s not worth it. But today when I was asked “You haven’t had that baby yet?” I had to say, “Well I definitely wouldn’t be at work if I had!”

    We had an ultrasound last Friday to check on your size. As of Friday you were weighing in at exactly seven pounds. When they looked in on you, you were sucking your thumb and “breathing.” Again you made it difficult for them to get a measurement of your head by conveniently ducking out of the way when they tried to measure you. But everything is looking good. The nurses are predicting you will be over eight pounds upon arrival! But we shall see.

    Your photo at 37 weeks, 3 days.
    Sarah

    2 more weeks. 14 more days.

    Unless, of course, you’re ready to come early, which would be fine by me!

    Love, Mama

  • Crafty Ladies

    Date: 2011.03.20 | Category: Baby, Family, Friends, Home, OMG YAY!, Style | Response: 6

    As I’ve said before, one of my favorite things about the nursery is all the great items that were lovingly handmade for it by family and friends. It means so much to me that all of these talented women spent so much time putting together these one-of-a-kind items especially for little Sarah. I know I’ve showed off some of these before, but I wanted to dedicate a post to just these handmade items.

    I hope you enjoy them as much as I do!

    Hand-sewn owl name hanging made by Becki.
    namebanner

    Bird/Goodnight Moon/Music/Name Play collage by Janice.
    collage

    Bird painting (which matches the bedding) by MC.
    mcpainting

    Door wreath was assembled by me with gifts from Laura H., Mona, Stephanie, MC, Claire, Sr. Martinette and Nana.
    wreath

    Cushy baby blanket from Cassie (all the way from Pittsburgh!)
    blanket_cassie

    Hand-crocheted baby blanket from my co-worker Ann.
    blanket_ann

    Birdie garland by Kelly.
    garland

    Super soft, monogrammed blanket made by MC.
    IMG_5276

    Hand-stitched birdie bag made by Becki.
    birdbag

    Round texture blanket. Each panel is a different texture and has fun things like snaps, velcro and tabs. Made by Tammy (all the way from Indianapolis!)
    texturee

    Paper Birds and Turtle wall art made by MC and me (but mostly MC).
    paperpainting

    Onesies made by Kelly.
    onesies

    I really love everything people have given me, but I continue to be impressed with the talents of our friends and family!

    Next up: Gifts we’ve received from Italy and Japan. :)

  • The Grand Tour

    Date: 2011.03.17 | Category: Baby, Family, Friends, Home, OMG YAY!, Pregnancy, Style | Response: 17

    It’s official, the nursery is DONE! I had so much fun decorating it with lots of birds and books, two of my favorite things. I was especially lucky to have so many talented friends who created things for her room! And of course an amazing husband who diligently measured, nailed and hung things where I pointed and begged and stressed the utmost importance of their perfect placement. This included brand new shelves in her closet.

    So, without further ado, I give you The Nursery:

    Doesn’t he look just like the “Little old lady whispering ‘hush?’”
    IMG_5280

    And that wreath on the door I’ve been putting together from gifts people have given us. It will go on her hospital door when it’s delivery time.

    Ta dah! The picture on the right was done by my mom’s friend Janice and is a collage of Goodnight Moon, sheet music and birds. The painting on the left was done by Mark for me of one of my favorite trees several years ago. I thought it fit in nicely with her birdie theme.
    IMG_5282

    The name hanging above her bed is crafted out of hand-sewn owls by my friend Becki. And the birdie garlands were made by Kelly for my shower. I loved them so much that I had to include them in her room! The picture above the changing table was hand crafted my MC and myself. The birdie painting to the left was done by MC and given to me at Christmas.
    IMG_5284

    Another view of the room where you can see the bookcase and the sign. The sign was given to me by mom and the little birdies from my grandmother. I’m in love with the bookcase stuffed with books and owls. This little girl will never want for lack of literature.
    IMG_5286

    IMG_5291

    And Mark installed these shelves for me today! Don’t they look great? We certainly needed them.
    IMG_5288

    And, of course, the clothes. What little girl’s closet would be complete without a whole rack full of them?
    IMG_5289

    There are so many details which I can’t really show here, but I am going to show off some of my favorite things in the next post.

    And finally one more piece of important news: the baby has officially “dropped” meaning that I can breathe again (it’s so glorious!) And I can sleep better. This also means her arrival is nigh. Can’t wait to see what the doc says Friday.

    Now, if only I can get the rest of the house clean and in order.

    We’re ready for you baby!

  • 37 Weeks

    Date: 2011.03.15 | Category: Baby, Pregnancy | Response: 8

    3/15/11

    37 Weeks

    Well we’ve done it. We are officially considered full term now, so if you did decide to make an appearance, you would be a perfectly healthy little baby. (Even though your due date is still three weeks away).

    And I can tell you  and I both would be ready. I feel so “stuffed with child” that it’s difficult to move or breathe.  I can distinguish your appendages now. Often a little foot will jam me in my upper abdomen and I can move it to a more comfortable spot. Your shoulder also pushes out a lot and we wage small battles until we are both comfortable again.

    Braxton Hicks contractions have come on with a vengeance. About every other day I will have two or three of them. Up until today they were just uncomfortable, but today I had a very painful one that squeezed my whole abdomen until it was like rock and lasted several minutes. Angela was at lunch with me and ready to whisk me off to the hospital if so needed. Fortunately it stopped though and things settled back down to normal.

    This week has also been full of hormone-induced mood swings that have left me in fits of tears while your daddy does his best to calm me down. I accidentally dropped and broke a plate yesterday that sent me into a 5 minute crying fit. I think the sleep deprivation may also play a big part in all this.

    I finally was getting some decent sleep for a couple of weeks, but you are strong enough now to wake me up when you get really active. Plus my back and hips ache and make it difficult to snooze. Usually I get up and eat something and hang out with Sam Cat for a bit until I feel tired again, then steal an hour of sleep before going into work.

    We got your car seat and stroller last night! That means if you decide to come now, they will let us take you home. We’re also putting the final touches on your nursery and washing the final batches of baby clothes. We’re stocked on diapers and just need to put together your bassinet. Your new home is ready and waiting for you.

    We love you and can’t wait to meet you in the upcoming weeks!

    Love,  Mama

  • Showered Again

    Date: 2011.03.15 | Category: Baby, Family, Food, Me, OMG YAY!, Pregnancy | Response: 8

    I know you’re probably thinking, “How come this girl is having so many baby showers?” Well turns out my family members all wanted to do their own thing with their own family, so I ended up with several separate events, which is fine by me.

    The last and final shower took place this past weekend in Ruston and honored both my sister and me, which turned out to be a blast! I loved having someone to share the spotlight with, making it not quite so awkward. Plus, for every cute pink thing I got, she got a corresponding blue one. And all the presents were coordinated by size and wrap.

    My cousin is an event planner, and she planned the whole thing with another cousin, two aunts, my grandmother and sister.

    The details were so creative.

    Mine and Shan’s baby pictures on the glasses:

    From Ruston Joint Baby Shower

    Oreo and cream cheese cake balls that were to die for.

    From Ruston Joint Baby Shower

    Lots of great food and flowers.

    From Ruston Joint Baby Shower

    The shower was hosted at the “Big House,” which belongs to some of my relatives. Here is my great great grandmother James leering over the presents.

    From Ruston Joint Baby Shower

    And T.L. James checking out the onesie decorating station.

    From Ruston Joint Baby Shower

    Opening coordinating presents with my sister!

    From Ruston Joint Baby Shower

    Mom’s friend Janice made these awesome book-themed wall art hangings. Birds and books! How perfect! (p.s. I promise to post updated nursery pics soon!)

    From Ruston Joint Baby Shower

    Mimi showing off the gifts to her grandbabies.

    From Ruston Joint Baby Shower

    Our youngest sister went all out and made BINS of presents for us!

    From Ruston Joint Baby Shower

    And finally, perfectly placed signs and baby bellies. That’s us at about 35 weeks and 37 weeks respectively.

    From Ruston Joint Baby Shower

    We’re near the end of this pregnancy journey. Hard to believe there are going to be two babies here in a matter of weeks.

    P.S. There are tons more pics. If you want to look at endless photos of baby presents and all my family members, click here.

  • Happy Blogday to Us!

    Date: 2011.03.09 | Category: Leela Fish | Response: 10

    My lowly little blog turned ONE yesterday! Hard to believe that I’ve been blogging that long already. And while I initially wanted to tell you about fun things I did and life list items I’ve accomplished, it’s sort of turned into a pregnancy blog. Ah well, such is the progression of life, right? I would say things might change after the baby comes, but I’ll probably just show you lots of pictures of my kid and tell you how amazing she is.

    In honor of my blog’s namesake and the beginning of Lent (after all, this commercial only runs during Lent), I’d like to share with you a video clip of how Leela became known as “Leelafish.”

    Warning: it’s a bit loud.

    She became entranced (or maybe “incensed” is a better word) with that commercial, and so we periodically substitute our own words and sing “Give me back that Leelafish, give me that fish” to our barking and slightly neurotic border collie. Don’t you wish you lived with us?

  • 36 Weeks

    Date: 2011.03.08 | Category: Baby, Mark, Me, Pregnancy | Response: 10

    3/8/11

    36 Weeks

    How appropriate that today is “Fat Tuesday” as I’m entering my ninth and (hopefully) final month of pregnancy. You are really and truly going to be here… and SOON.

    Last night I had my first painful contractions. At first I wasn’t sure what was going on, then when the pain subsided I realized what had just happened. About five minutes passed and then I had a second one. Your daddy’s eyes were as big as saucers and he whipped out his handy-dandy “contraction timer” iPhone app, ready to start timing them just in case this was the big moment. Turns out it wasn’t. After two, things settled down. During the contractions you didn’t move at all, but as soon as they were over you went crazy, bouncing all over and squirming. Turns out you don’t care too much for being squeezed.

    This week also marked the first time that putting on my own pants and shoes left me angry and frustrated. Bending over is extremely difficult and going from laying down to sitting up is equally hard.

    After all these crazy things I decided it was time to pack a bag for the hospital. So we are packed and ready to go, just in case those contractions decide to persist next time.

    According to the doc, my body is progressing well. We have weekly appointments now to check and make sure you aren’t making your way out without my knowledge.

    I still can’t believe you’re really and truly going to be here in the next few weeks. Everything is about to change. And we couldn’t be happier or more anxious.

    Love, Mama

    p.s. Here I am looking all of 9 months pregnant:
    9 Months 2