Tuesday, April 22, 2014

"Wish you would step back from that ledge, my friend."

The drive to our next adventure is always the hardest part for these puppies.
Sumo makes little whimpering noises out of agonizing excitement almost the entire way.
Me: You think you're agonized now??? Just wait until I get you in the park and make you stop to pose in wildflowers. That'll show you!!
Puppies: Oh ya? You want to play that game? We'll just constantly look in a different directions than you, as a subtle rebellion. 
Sumo: Okay, fine, if you're not going to give up, I'll just give you what you want. Can we go play in the water now? Can we? Can we?! CAN WE?!
These pups would have jumped off a cliff to get to the water (no joke; we had to pull them back from the edge while singing Jumper by Third Eye Blind on more than one occasion).
I love it when all the natural natives are in bloom.
It was the perfect spring day to go for a walk by the lake, then stopping to chill under a cypress tree by the creek and watch people do crazy things like fasten a tie-down across two trees and practice their "tight rope" skills (or their lack there of), or ride down the biking trail on a motorcycle in a full on, head to toe Easter Bunny costume (and you just thought weird people lived in Austin, Hollywood, or Portland.......turns out every city has their own set of unique breeds).
And since I've bored you with two puppy posts in a row, I might as well indulge a little further by showing you this hilariously dramatic video about A Sad Dog's Diary. 

Monday, April 21, 2014

"Why The Hell Would I Know Where Your Mother Is?"

If these puppies think it's already hot outside, they've got a rude awakening headed their way in the next couple of months!! I must admit, though, the bright green blades of cool Johnson grass being blown by the wind into rhythmic flowy waves did look mighty refreshing and I shortly contemplated on joining the panting party. 
They ended up getting their wish 2 days later, when a cold front brought unexpected freezing temperatures to town!!! I was counting my blessings that I hadn't put the plants I've been pampering all winter outside just yet, like I had initially planned. 
Let's all take a moment to honor National Grilled Cheese Sandwich Day. As you all know, my husband is the biggest fan of all "sandwich categories", and when I heard about this on what I call "the fake news", because it doesn't talk about anything particularly relevant....unless you consider holidays like this relevant (which we do, hence the real life picture featuring my version of a how a grilled cheese should be, minus the pickles since our frig was so unfortunately barren of deli pickles). If you're just now finding out about this holiday, I'm sorry you missed it, but the good news is you can always catch it again next year!!!
While you're here, you should totally watch this educational owl video, because it makes me oh so happy, and I have a feeling it will you, as well. The German fairy tale is especially my very favorite part. "And then the owl swooped down and ripped the little girl's face off and ate her eyeballs." (I'm giggling all over again, just thinking about it!)

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Like a Waddle Star: Week 32

'Twas Monday Belly Photo Day and this one was bluntly honest picture with 3 day old wind blown hair, the most comfortable public appropriate clothes I could find for the short errands I had to run, and absolutely no makeup. A hot mess. At least I put on a bra and took a shower; you're welcome. 
A cold front blew in, and there's nothing more I wanted to do than change into the amazingly comfortable pajama pants I stole from Jessica's house, lay on the couch bundled in a cozy blanket, and watch Ellen, while drifting in and out of naps. 
I'm a little embarrassed to admit that I haven't "worked out" in about a month, but I walk on most days until I start getting cramps.......or feel fatigued (more than usual) or start waddling too much (quite a site, I assure you). A sweet friend let me borrow her maternity support belt and it makes such a world of difference for my lower abdomen and back! Another thing that makes a difference (and some may think this is crazy and unbelievable) is my meditation/self-hypnosis practice. One day last week I woke up with the most horrible back pain. I went through all the tricks to relieve it, and nothing seemed to help. Then I sat down and practiced my hypnobabies CD, focusing on hypnotic anesthesia. I had already been efficient in managing to get my arms and legs numb, but on this day, it's real effectiveness would be put to the test......and it worked!! My back pain completely vanished and didn't return. True story. 
Cotton may not be old enough to know much about life yet, but there is one thing he/she is sure of, and that's a definite preference for the right side of my abdomen. 
Patrick is doing an amazing job of studying for his birth partner role and being supportive. I came home from work and found this little note of positive affirmations taped to the refrigerator. He knows just the way to my heart: food, and love notes in the form of positive thoughts.
In other news, not only do we get to see Cotton via ultrasound in a couple of days, we're also suppose to take maternity pictures this week and are crossing our fingers the weather cooperates. 

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Worse Than a Nightmare

There I was, innocently scrolling through my dimly lit phone, trying to pass the time during my now routine 1am insomnia episode while being as considerate as possible to my snoring beauty of a husband, when I felt a shift in my hair. Always paranoid when it comes to bugs residing in my hair (for good reason according to my unfortunate record), a brief tinge of panic rushed through my veins, but I kept calm, assuring myself it was just a strand of hair sliding down the pillow, rationalizing it's movement by the fan catching it for some strange reason. 
Then I felt the shift again. Okay, that was weird. Don't freak out. Don't freak out. 
The following seconds would be a blur of chaos as the over-sized lunatic moth (I had no idea what it was at the time) got a wild hair up it's butt and darted for my phone. I screeched a little and jumped up in bed faster than a wild monkey in a banana fight (except I went the opposing direction of the moth, unlike I would assume the monkey might do if it was fighting over a banana). This reaction would no doubt awake the slumbering husband, who of course, thought I had lost my mind. 
"There was a bug! A big crazy bug! In my hair! It landed on me and flew over my phone! I swear!"
.........Nothing? No response? 
Only confused and skeptical stares were being transmitted from the husband.
(source)
I turned the lamp on. No movement. No evidence. No bug. Geez, I'm looking pretty irrational right now.
"I'm positive there was a bug," I tried to convince him as I attempted half-heartily to settle back down. And just as my head was about 2 inches from the pillow, "I just can't find....." before I could finish, the spastic direction-ally challenged bug hit me in the face!
This time there wasn't a screech; it was a full blown scream. I'd had enough. I was thrashing the covers, darting around as best I could, determined to find and destroy this demon haunting my bed.
Patrick continued to stare in disbelief, glassy-eyed and blank-faced. "Are you okay? I didn't see anything. I don't have my glasses on."
"You didn't see that?!?! IT WAS THERE ON MY PILLOW, blending in with the brown, AND FLEW AT MY FACE! I SWEAR!"
After a few minutes of searching, I found the pesky critter lurking beside the night stand, where my hero in boxer briefs was quickly directed to immediately find and flush this new enemy. Alas, I was rescued, but unfortunately not before a good dose of adrenaline had been released into my system, resulting in even worse insomnia than normal.
(source)
This incident may have been nothing in the grand scheme of things, especially compared to the time a gigantic roach was in my hair and I stood on the table while Patrick took everything out from under the bed to murder the invader, or that other time I jumped in the car after watering the flowers, looked in the mirror and found a wolf spider lurking in my locks, my dramatic reaction almost causing us to have a wreck, but it was enough to keep me wide awake for another 2 hours!!!
Bugs + Bed = Definitely worse than a nightmare. 

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Lesson Learned: Week 31

It's official; we are in the single digits of weeks left before we get to meet Cotton!!!!
There's a valid reason why most women in their 3rd trimester of pregnancy don't spend late nights out  partying (all jacked up on lemonade until 4 am)........
It's because it takes almost 3 days to recover! I was hobbling around the next day from round ligament soreness and didn't do anything but sleep for a solid 2 days. Pitifully, it even took me more than half a day to work up the energy just to get off the couch and look this decent.
In other news, we have an ultrasound scheduled for next week because our chunky monkey is measuring a whole 2 weeks ahead of schedule! I've read that measurements could be subjective, depending on how the baby is positioned at the time (which has been all up under my ribs lately), but Cotton has consistently been measuring a week ahead of schedule via ultrasound starting from the get go, and even though my belly has grown considerably since my last weigh-in at the office 4.5 weeks ago, I only gained 2 pounds, so we shall see! 

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Cuddle Compensation

If we all look tired......it's because we were.

Only one person in that picture had more than 3 hours of sleep, and from the looks of it he's not ashamed of it either. 
We were dying to cuddle with sweet Holden and no type of scheduling conflicts or lack of sleep were going to hold us back from getting what we wanted!!!
We took advantage of Cristina's generosity and didn't give him back for a solid couple of hours, but we didn't leave her empty handed. As cuddle compensation, I made her and John dinner, Jessica supplied dessert, and Ale brought a breast feeding survival basket.
It's hard to believe that in less then 3 months, I wont have to go to someone else's house to steal baby cuddles! 
Until then, I know a little someone who will take as many cuddles as he can get, especially when his pride is hurt from falling off the couch. 

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Small Life Adjustments: Week 30

I'm starting to feel really tired these days, like I could take a nap at any given time. Sometimes I feel like I'm moving through water just to get around.....or at my most tired times, mud. So long second trimester energy! Aside from that small detail, and all the blooming trees flaring up allergies I didn't know I had that I refuse to take medicine for, I think I feel pretty awesome.
Everyone has been so sweet lately, telling me how good I look......because around now is the time I should start looking like crap, I guess?? The most common things people say right now are, "You look like you have a basketball stuffed under your shirt," and "If I only saw you from the back, I wouldn't even know you were pregnant."
I don't know my own girth anymore, and as a result am constantly bumping into things when I think I have enough room to steer clear. The other day, I tried to squeeze by the grocery cart that was positioned next to the conveyer belt in the check out isle, but couldn't fit. I then laughed at myself for even thinking I could suck in far enough to make it happen (any amount of sucking in is impossible), had to pull the cart out, go down the isle, and pull the cart behind me......little life adjustments that feel so weird. 
If I stand for a long time, my feet turn pink.
I read that the top of my uterus is around or a little above the half way point between my belly button and my boobs. This is a crazy truth as evidenced by the feeling of Cotton literally wedged inside the bottom part of my ribs when I'm sitting down or the occasional sucker punch to the ribs when 'you know who' is feeling really feisty. Sometimes I can't tell if Cotton is moving around in a really strong way or if I'm having a Braxton Hicks contraction, although I'm pretty sure it's Braxton Hicks contractions. Don't worry, they're painless and completely normal.....just a really strange tightening sensation.
We started studying Hpynobabies this week. Intriguing stuff. I'm actually so interested, it's hard to just stick to weekly studies instead of reading the entire book straight through.
Every single person who guessed when my belly button was going to flatten out has officially lost!! It's super shallow, and gets really close to being completely flat when I'm sitting down, but is still hanging in there.

Monday, March 31, 2014

How Do You Know?

How do you know when your man is a keeper? 
Here are 5 signs:

1. He waits until 12:06 pm on a Saturday "morning" to bring you breakfast in bed......because you were still sleeping up until that point and he completely comprehends that no matter how great the gesture, waking you up before noon is totally off limits.
2. He texts you cute pictures of the fur babies while you're at work and occasionally a video of the lovey or funny song he recently played on the guitar because 12 hours is just too long to spend without each other, no matter how many years you've been together.
3. He puts together all the new baby gear right away, and spends plenty of time learning how to use everything........then asks for the next project to tackle!
4. He comes home from a long day at the office to not a single thing being done around the house and assures you, as he washes 2 days worth of dishes, prepares dinner himself, and picks up the used tissues laying around all over the living room,
that it's completely okay to stay on the couch and continue to not lift a finger, because growing a baby is hard work. 
5. No matter how big you know your butt is getting, he continues in his life mission to convince you you're the sexiest woman on the planet and no man has ever had it so lucky.

These are just a few of my favorite things Patrick has done for me lately. 
If I'm not mistaken, I'm pretty sure I'm the lucky one. 
(source)

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Don't Act Like You're Not Impressed

Prepare yourself. This is mostly about food.
But first, and most importantly, Patrick has some exciting news!!! He is now officially ordained and ready to join two hearts together in Holy matrimony!!! Fancy. For all you love birds out there wanting to get hitched or renew your vows.......I can hook you up!
Second on my list of randoms, after years of holding my arms up in the air so long I thought they'd fall off and still failing miserably at the task at hand, I finally figured out how to french braid my own hair!!!! Seriously, I feel so successful. 
And while on the subject of success, I finally got smart and cracked the code on why blogger has been bleaching out my photos since November of last year!!! Not that you care or even noticed, but apparently Google+ thought they'd be clever and try to "fix" the photos that I've already fixed....but I "fixed" that by disabling the auto-enhancement application that automatically gave itself privileges to destroy my artwork. Thanks, but no thanks, Google.  
I love FroYo so much that I went out and had it by myself last Saturday when Patrick was out of town and I got cancelled from work......but sharing it with others is the best.....like a couple of weekends ago when Patrick, Emily and I had some of the yummy goodness while playing the ol' peg game!! (Full disclosure: I did the worst out of the 3 of us, by the way.)
Did you know it isn't cool anymore to say "FroYo"? That's what my very in-the-know-niece informed me, anyway. Dang it, I've got to try and keep up with my hipness a little better. 
I happened to make some amazing banana nut bread, sprinkled with semi-sweet chocolate chips. 
And my brother just happened to make some pretty tasty gelato and brought it over. 
I guess that means the two MUST be paired together, with the bread warmed, and chopped hazelnuts sprinkled on top. YUMMY!!!!
"Don't act like you're not impressed." --Ron Burgandy

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Extremities, Extremities, Everywhere in 3D!!: Week 29

It's been a pretty eventful and expensive week! 
We kicked started it by picking up the crib we ordered a couple of weeks ago and splurging on a nice mattress to go with it. We started to worry we'd have to come back with a trailer after seeing how gigantic the box was, but with a little muscle and geometric manipulation, we were able to cram it in the 4runner for the short trip home.


Excited to see how it'd look in the nursery, we didn't waste any time putting it together once we got home.......and as soon as it was done, I pulled a "me", deciding the entire room needed to be rearranged for a better flow. The great part is, I love how it all turned out in the end, and with the help of my brother, I didn't even have to lift a finger. 
After that adventure, we were all counting down the hours to being able to see what Cotton looked like on the elective 3D/4D ultrasound. The technology is new enough that our parents had never seen such a thing and were excited to make the 4 hour round trip drive just to get a sneak peak of their growing grand-baby.
With so much time and effort on the line, you can image how disappointed we were when that little stinker decided to be stubborn and interpret the word "cooperative" with completely blocking his/her face with a barricade of hands and feet.  
Before we even switched to 3D mode, the ultrasound tech advised us to not proceed and reschedule our appointment before switching to the mode we'd be charged for, hoping the baby would be positioned better on another date. Tempted to take her advice, Patrick and I decided to decline it and continue with the ultrasound. There was no way we could let our parents drive all that way for nothing!!!
After trying for a while with me in different positions, and still getting nothing but blurry extremities on the camera, the tech was sweet and patient enough to let us have a little break and see if I could make some magic happen.
Try to imagine, for a moment, 5 other people in a tiny intimately lit room, intently fixated on me with my bulging torso exposed, jumping around, squatting and kicking, performing a belly dance, coaxing words of encouragement to Cotton while pushing in different places on my abdomen. It was a bit of a freak show. We all giggled at the silliness of the situation and crossed our fingers that it actually worked. 
Even though a certain someone remained completely content in fetal position and sucking on his/her toes, we were still able to get some great facial shots after all that effort. Phew!!
And another success: no accidental crotch shots were made in the process!! But now the ultrasound tech can be added to the list of people dying to know if we're having a boy or a girl!
I may be biased, but isn't that the most beautiful little face?!?!?!?! I have a feeling I'll be watching our DVD of the session all the time, in anticipation of the day we get to meet our sweet stubborn bundle of joy.

Monday, March 24, 2014

Third Time's a Charm. Lavender and Lace

As I've previously mentioned, 'tis the season for showers galore, and next on the list was to celebrate our upcoming bride, Jessica.
With a wedding theme of vintage lace and purple flowers, I hit up the local antique shops to get the basics for my crafting. 
I thrifted doilies, wrapped mason jars in burlap and lace with strings of pearls, converted old silver serving plates to useful chalk boards, covered a woodwork G with moss, and performed an experimental photo transfer onto a wooden plaque. 
I enjoy making my own flower arrangements, which is also extremely cost effective, but managed to get the biggest eye roll from a grocery store florist when I asked for wires to stabilize my roses. Apparently that's an old trade that's not commonly practiced anymore, which I think is a huge mistake. We shared words on the subject and both had to agree to disagree.
The trickiest part of all was managing to pass all the scrap book paper around at work to gather words of wisdom and well wishes without Jessica noticing what was going on. 
Everything was coming together perfectly.......that is, until the actual day of the shower. But what would life be without a few bumps in the road here and there? 
Originally taking place at Chuy's, who refused to take reservations but ensured us hosting our shower would be no problem, I arrived with all the supplies 1.5 hours early.......you know, to be extra prepared. It would be at this very moment they broke the news that not only were they declining me even a single table in their almost completely empty seating area, but they also wouldn't be letting a single person sit until half our party arrived.
After getting no where with begging and pleading, I advanced to threatening and talking to the manager.......which of course just lead to empty promised shrugs. This just wasn't going to work. No way, no how. 
It was scramble time. 
I re-loaded all the decor into my car, called the girls, and collaboratively made the decision to hightail it to Abuelo's, who's hosted several of our showers, where I'd be profusely apologizing for a last minute accommodation for a table of 20. They quickly arranged something for us, and just when we'd gotten everything decorated and organized beautifully, the General Manager showed up out of no where to tell us we couldn't utilize the 2 extra tables the waiters had helped us put together for our decor unless we wanted to reserve the entire room for a whopping grand total of $800. Geez, what a steal. 
This couldn't be happening. It just didn't make sense. I refused to fail at this shower. Two out of the three of us may have had giant bellies at this point, but we wouldn't be going belly up in this battle. 
I composed my hormonal emotions and re-approached the bench for a little negotiating. It wasn't easy, but after a heart to heart, we managed to work something out. The down fall???? We'd have to move everything we just set up to the other side of the restaurant! 
Determined to make everything as perfect as possible for our beautiful bride, we took a deep breath and got to moving for the third time, now racing the clock, while also editing e-vite's, calling work to notify people of the location change, and texting anyone and everyone we could to spread the word.
It's a good thing we had cake to look forward to, since alcohol is currently out of the question. A little bit of whipped icing makes everything better. 
And so does seeing that really big smile on Jessica's face!
Kinks smoothed just in the nick of  time for our guest's arrival, it all worked out in the end. A lovely shower for a very deserving girl.
If she didn't know how much we love her, she sure does now!
A few people didn't get the memo and still showed up a Chuy's first, but they were quickly directed to where the "angry shower girls" went.
Could Jasmine be any cuter? I'm still waiting on her to try the cheeseburger taco. 
And Gabriel, man, he had quite the love affair with that menu. 
Just ask the innocent waitress that tried to pick it up after our orders were placed.
What's the moral of this story? Show up early, never give up, and don't take entertainment away from a happy baby! 
(Oh ya, and don't try to host a shower at Chuy's. EVER!)
 

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