Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Pregnancy Update

I really want to update about the pregnancy, mostly so I can remember all of these things one day so I'm going to give you a fabulous pregnancy survey!!

How far along? Today I am 24 weeks and 5 days.

Total weight gain/loss: Have gained 19lbs so far (hoping that will stay on a halt until April 12.... likelihood of that? Probably slim....

Maternity clothes? Um yes please, not a chance for my regular clothes, not even my regular sized t-shirts.

Stretch marks? Not yet, but they are inevitable so I check every day.

Sleep: Not so fun. I am a stomach sleeper and I miss that. I just don't quite understand what side-sleepers do with their arms/hands. They always go to sleep! Saturdays are my favorite days because sleeping after 5am seems to work much better than sleeping between 10pm-5am.

Best moment this week: Baby Hiccups!!

Movement: All day long!

Food cravings: Fruit, fruit, fruit. I went grocery shopping Sunday and came home with Watermelon, pineapple, strawberries, bananas and apples. I had to remind myself to buy spinach to get in something green too! I hope I don't end up with gestational diabetes because I would have nothing to eat! (I do have a sinking hunch that I will though, is that a normal feeling??)

Gender: Boy!

Labor Signs: None that I know of, thank the Lord.

Belly Button in or out? Still in, but getting smaller. Does everyone's belly button actually pop out or just flatten?? I saw a pregnant lady this weekend whose belly button looked as big as her belly showing through her shirt.

Wedding rings on or off? On, no issues there, but I don't sleep in them either.

What I miss: I'm not a big drinker, but I really do miss a cold mexican beer after a very long day of work :) But bubbled water seems to do the trick.

What I am looking forward to: Meeting this little guy and pushing around a stroller with a baby in it.

Weekly Wisdom: My cousin told me yesterday to buy pampers diapers and huggies wipes. I thought that was good wisdom :) I don't think I have any wisdom yet, other than trusting God with my fears.

Today I felt the baby have hiccups for the first time!! I couldn't even get up I was so excited about it. Ben was rushing around trying to get things ready to go out of town and he kept saying, "okay, c'mon do this, or do that" and all I could do was lay there and feel him hiccup. Too cute!!! (He probably was not enjoying them as much as I was and I imagine much later in the pregnancy I may also find it not as wonderful :) But today was wonderful!

Sunday, March 27, 2011

New Orleans??

We will be heading to New Orleans in a few weeks for a wedding and I NEED your help! What on earth should we do while we're there??

We'll be staying at the Wyndham on Bourbon Street and other than the actual wedding we have plenty of time to find lots of fun things to do. So I need to know, what should we do in New Orleans? Restaurants that are a must or any touristy places to stop by???


Saturday, March 26, 2011

A decision has been made!

Ben and I FINALLY picked out furniture! We have been looking for quite sometime and after looking at a ton of stores, websites and prices (!!!) we made a decision. Yes, this includes our bedroom furniture AND nursery furniture.

Here is our nursery purchase, although we decided on just the crib and a dresser (not shown). Not the under crib storage either... all I thought was how much that would attract dust and doghair!

It was hard to make the purchase, but Ben used his negotiating skills he learned from Pawn Stars (along with shopping at a warehouse/market store) and we really feel like we got a great deal (and that is why we've been saving). I feel so much better now that our baby won't arrive before the crib :). The 'what-will-be-a-nursery' still looks like a disaster area, but we are one step closer. My dad is going to help me paint next weekend and our furniture will be here in 4 weeks. Then we'll worry about the little things like curtains and accessories (hamper, storage, pictures, bedding, etc.).

I can't wait for our furniture to be in either and my clothes to be in a working dresser; don't worry there will be before and after pictures!

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Spring Breaking

What a blessing it has been to be at the beach for 6 days WITH an extra hour of daylight!! It was beautiful and we even found several starfish:

and saw a manatee

(although there is still a debate over whether he was sick or not since he was floating above water for quite awhile. My very worried grandmother did call Marine Land who told her he was probably resting and to call back if he seemed to be in 'distress'. Ben and I voted he was just cold and trying to warm up).

Ben even felt the baby kick for the first time!! I think I was more excited about it than him though. It feels like a HUGE kick to me, but to him it is a slight thump. My mom and friend Aaron felt it too though, so precious! I absolutely love every time I feel him move, it just makes me curious what he's doing in there.

This was supposed to be a sweet picture, but Ben couldn't figure out anything to do with his hand other than grab my belly like a soccer ball....
Here is my first semi-good maternity shot! At almost 24 weeks!!
And my nephew looking much more innocent than he really is ;)
And we also made sure to take note of the largest moon in 18 years. It was very pretty, but I really think beach moons you can catch sometimes that are very pink look much bigger. I couldn't tell much of a difference, but it was definitely a beautiful night to be at the beach!

We could not have asked for more beautiful weather and thank the Lord we had a very safe and mostly relaxing trip. Now back to reality. Standardized testing for the next 3 weeks at school. Praying I do everything like I'm supposed to!

Thursday, March 10, 2011

22 weeks!

I've made it to 22 weeks :)

Little baby's heartbeat was great today and he actually even measured 24 weeks instead of 22. My weight gain is also fine according to my doctor. 15lbs so far, but if feels like 30. She did tell me I needed to not have ice cream every other day, ha! if you insist.... She said once or twice a week is more appropriate. But really she is SO laid back about everything.

Sleep is hit or miss, but I'm a bad sleeper anyway. Some nights are better than others and usually the bad nights are more because of stress than baby. (Like dreaming about standardized testing or baby kidnappers.) I did buy a boppy body pillow that has helped a good bit. It's not a miracle worker, but it's pretty good.

I'm also feeling the baby SO much now. It is such a wonderful feeling, and just brightens any moment when I feel it. Ben has yet to feel him, but we've only tried a couple times because I can imagine its frustrating. I know in a week or two he will definitely be able to. (He probably could now if he had A LOT of patience.)

I did manage to take a picture for you this week, from my phone again, and I have the most wonderful face... ha! This was my 3rd or 4th attempt to keep it from being fuzzy so in my defense, my smile is quite fake :)

Maybe I'll get some great ones while we are at the beach!! Anyways, no progress on the nursery yet, so I can't tell you which paint color, you'll have to wait for pictures!

Now, you should all turn on Wipeout - Blind Date Edition for the funniest mess you've ever seen, this show CRACKS me up!!!

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Ash Wednesday

Today is a day of turning our lives back to God and I can tell you that I am ready! These past several weeks I have felt further away from him than I would like. I've felt more discouraged and fearful than I have in the past too, and I know this is because my relationship is lacking. It's not just one thing that is keeping me from being as close as I need to be to God, but more of just everything. I've let my daily distractions become an excuse to be lazy with my relationship and I'm paying for it. I hadn't taken the time to plug in my ipod and listen to worship music in over a month, although the past few days I finally have because I've really needed it. I just feel down and know that Jesus is the only thing that can pull me out of this funk.

Lent begins today and Ben and I participate in Ash Wednesday at our church (United Methodist). I am really looking forward to the Ash Wednesday service tonight to rededicate our lives to Jesus Christ and work on really listening to Him, becoming closer and remembering who it is we are: His children.

I've thought a lot this week about what I (and Ben) should give up that is keeping us from being close to our Lord and it is pretty easy, and silly. Its our iphones. Well, more so the junk on them. I can't believe I'm saying this, but we both play solitaire on our iphone or words with friends all the time! Its out of sheer boredom (laziness!) and it is precious time that we could be devoting to worshiping and listening to God. So, we are giving up 'junk' on our iphones and going to read a passage in the bible each night as a couple. (Something that we always talk about wanting to do, but rarely make the time to do it.)

I'm not one for keeping or doing New Year's Resolutions, but when Jesus is involved in a resolution, I'm MUCH more motivated and am looking forward to growing closer to Christ during the next 40 days.

I want to encourage you to participate in Lent, even if your church may not.

Here is a list of ideas of things you could do or how to get started:


10. Try an electronic fast. Give up TV, Guitar Hero, texting, tweeeting, e-mail and all things electronic for one day every week. (or everyday of Lent!) Use the time to read & pray.

9. Start a prayer rhythm. Say a prayer every time you brush your teeth, hear an ambulance, or check your e-mail. Before you text someone, pray for them.

8. Read one chapter in the Bible each day. (Matthew's a good book to start with. Psalms, too.)

7. Forgive someone who doesn't deserve it (maybe even yourself.)

6. Give up soft drinks, fast food, tea or coffee. Give the money you save to help folks in Haiti or others in crisis.

5. Create a daily quiet time. Spend 30 minutes a day in silence and prayer.

4. Cultivate a life of gratitude. Write someone a thank you letter each week and be aware of how many people have helped you along the way.

3. Be kind to someone each day.

2. Pray for others you see as you walk to and from classes or drive to and from work.

1. Volunteer one hour or more each week with a local shelter, tutoring program, nursing home, prison ministry or a Habitat for Humanity project."

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

I would like a money tree please

from google images

Why is gas $3.39 per gallon?!
And diesel is $3.80 per gallon!!!

Why did my power bill go up $21 per month??? (Budget Billing)

Dog food has gone up $1.50. My entire grocery bill has gone up about $50 (I don't know if that is because of more expensive groceries or pickier eating, but Ben says its more expensive groceries because of more expensive diesel.)

This morning I really did have a pity party about the rising prices. I am so thankful to have a job, SO THANKFUL. I cannot express that enough. But, with prices going up and up and jobs still being few and far between or people being very scared of losing their jobs, I am feeling discouraged. I probably should have paid more attention one of the few of times I took economics. Because right now supply and demand just aren't making complete sense to me.

You should all know by now that I am the budget-er of the family. I make a yearly spreadsheet sometime in November for the next year and usually have it a month ahead of schedule of where we'll be. I plan ahead for hair cuts, license plate renewals, etc. and surprisingly most the time, enjoy keeping track of everything, or at least enjoy being able to put a little bit in savings. So it frustrates me to no end, that now I have to change my whole budget to incorporate rising prices... boo!!!

Are things just going to get tougher? How are people surviving who are on a VERY tight budget to begin with?! It just doesn't seem fair.

I have adjusted my driving again though. Since I drive 40 miles to work one way, I'm back to 65mph, getting 32mpg. Thank goodness for Pontiac Vibes! I hope it lasts another 100,000 miles! :)

Also, I'm hoping our child will become a 'saver' and not a 'free-spirit' with money.
The first item I bought for him:

Yes, if you are thinking I bought the doggie-bank, instead of the piggy-bank you are correct! Its just so dang cute. I LOVE piggy banks, LOVE them! I've been in search of the perfect one for a few years and never bring myself to buy them, but I decided when I saw this little guy that the baby needed it! (Plus, it looks a little bit like our Logan).

How are you reacting to the rising prices?

Thursday, March 3, 2011


I can't get enough of this sweet face.

Ava is 18 months old!! Trying to figure out this car. She has the getting in and out part down, but the Flintstone-type driving still baffles her. The funniest thing was if I'd push her car up the driveway she would fearlessly get it in and fly back down, but then couldn't figure out how to get it back up again.

Here is little Caroline, all of 10-days old.I promise she looks JUST like my little brother instead of my older brother, her daddy! I can't wait for him to meet her. Granted, they both look a lot a like, but Chris (little brother) looked just like this when he was a baby.

Chris will be home for a break from the Army in just a week!! We didn't know he'd be coming home this soon, but I get to spend a whole week with him at the beach :) He is still in Texas and currently the plan is for him to be deployed end of May. Prayers, prayers prayers!

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Nursery blessings

I know I've mentioned all the amazing maternity clothes that I got from a couple of friends, but I cannot even tell you guys how much we have been blessed in the past few weeks.

First of all, the scripture this weekend at church was Matthew 6:25-34 with verse 26 saying: "Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they?" I've mentioned this before when we first found out that we had been pregnant with twins and Ben panicked, but, even now that we have a singleton, getting ready is not easy. That entire scripture is great to me because it is SUCH a reminder that there is nothing to be anxious of, to fear. God WILL take care of us. I know we've gotten this far because of him, but trying to get ready for a baby is overwhelming too! There is A LOT you need (and want)! But, God never fails. He will always provide!

Last weekend I went to a very good/long time friend of mine's house and she basically gave me a baby shower from her attic! Dr. Brown's bottles, pack'n'play, a car seat, bases, play centers, changing pad, diaper genie, etc! She's letting us borrow so much stuff long term too and she's not one of those people that you are scared to borrow stuff from :) This could not be a bigger blessing to us!

This is a terrible picture below, but its a few of the items we have waiting to go into the nursery. Do you see those Dr. Brown's bottles in the corner?? 18 of them!

Now we just need to paint and get junk OUT of the nursery to put these fun items IN :) (Don't worry, I took before pictures to hopefully pair with some much better 'after' pictures sooner or later.)

I did pick out a paint color. Can you believe it? ME, yes, I picked out a paint color. It helped that I asked my dad to pick one out too and out of the thousands of benjamin moore paint colors we picked the EXACT same one!!! I think that was God keeping me from stressing too much over a paint color. Because he knows I would!

Here were my final choices: Kingsport Gray, Ashley Gray and Gull Wing Gray. I wanted a color that would blend with our other 'gray' rooms well.

Which one do you think I chose? :)

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Spring, Testing, Vacations & Babies!

Ready for random?

I am so thrilled and relieved with the weather we have had for 2 straight weeks! I bought a cute pair of crocs strappy sandals (my first pair, but they are very cute!) and have not looked back since... I'm done with winter! I am hoping to not have to go back to closed-toed winter shoes. I do not love winter, winter shoes, winter clothes, sweaters, etc. I LOVE spring, dresses, skirts, hammocks and swimming!! Thank goodness I live in Alabama!

Anyways, I have really enjoyed the weather and my achy-back has calmed down a bit since I've bought these crocs that I have been able to walk in the afternoons with Ben and the dogs! I almost went out to the hammock today when I got home, but exhaustion caught me on the couch. :)

We have 1.5 weeks until Spring Break and I'm so excited. This will be our first spring break to actually go on vacation in about 5 years. I have had spring break every year since I was in school getting my master's, but I also had to work so I never fully enjoyed this fabulous vacation time until this year. We will be going down to visit my grandmother who lives 3 blocks from the beach!!! Yay! I even have 2 maternity swim suits (because I am not one of those ladies who wants to flaunt my preggy stomach in a bikini... haha!).

Spring break will be the calm before the storm. The week after spring break is TESTING, the dreaded week of all school personnel and mostly those in charge of coordinating it all - counselors. I'm a little nervous because it is A LOT to organize and make sure it goes very smoothly without anyone getting written up, doing any thing illegal and possibly being investigated to lose a certificate, yikes! The first time to do anything is always a tricky process, but this one is a little more stressful. I'll be so glad when its checked off my list!

Also, yesterday our new governor announced that he was putting 3% cuts on all education budgets (that does NOT have 3% to lose) so I'm anxious to see what that means for everything. Right now we already have 30 students per classroom and only 1 counselor to every 750 students and I pray that it does not get worse. I do pray about my job daily, but I know that God gave me this position this year and I could not be more thankful. He also gave us this baby and has a wonderful plan. I would worry about paying bills if I lost my job, but I'm just trusting in Him right now. I would love the opportunity to keep working with these students though!

In pregnancy news, I am almost 21 weeks pregnant!! I also have felt the baby move this week! I felt it once or twice in the past few weeks, but as of Friday night & Saturday it has gotten stronger and more frequent throughout the day. It is just such a sweet feeling and relief. I have been eating WAY too many sweets still, and wish I had more self-control. I haven't had any strong cravings except fruit. I cannot get enough fruit. We go back in a week to hear the heartbeat.
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