Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Back on the Diet.....Sigh

When I found out that I was pregnant, our diet pretty much went out the window. All I could stomach was grilled cheese sandwiches or Mexican grilled cheese sandwiches (quesadillas). And with Ryan's new job, he no longer had time to make our steel cut oats in the morning. Heaven knows I don't have time to make them seeing how in one hour's time I have to: get Sydney up and out of bed, get Liam up, feed Liam breakfast while fixing Sydney's lunch, get Sydney's breakfast ready, get Liam dressed, toss Sydney her clothes so she can get dressed, wash and dry my hair, get myself dressed, brush Liam's teeth, monitor Sydney's teeth brushing, fix Sydney's hair and get out the door by 8 so Sydney can get to school. I don't eat breakfast until after I drop Sydney off and I usually end up making something easy, like peanut butter toast or hot Grape Nuts.

Unfortunately, it looks like we're going to have make time for the steel cut oats again. We'll also have to do another thorough cleaning of the pantry to weed out the carbs and sugar. And forget the caramel corn and chocolate milkshakes I've been craving.

You see, I had my regular obstetrician visit this morning and while my blood pressure was great and the baby's heart rate was fabulous, one thing was not so hot. Although I am only 23 weeks along in my pregnancy, the baby is measuring at 26 weeks. Considering that I usually have small babies (6 lbs., 2 oz., and 5 lbs., 11 oz.), the doctor is quite concerned about the baby's unusual size. He's worried that I might have gestational diabetes this time around. And here I thought I was going to be able to get through this pregnancy without worrying. NOT.

My official glucose test is set for next month, but in the meantime, we'll be jumping back on the diet train. I sure am going to miss pie, cake, cookies, milkshakes, ice cream, bread and pasta in the coming months.


Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Before and After (bathroom)

Sorry I've been MIA. Nothing's wrong and we're all fine (except for Liam's runny nose), I just haven't felt like blogging. Like my mom says, I've just got a case of the "blahs."

Anyway, we're almost done with the bathroom update. I've still got a bit of painting to do around the trim and I have a couple of pictures that need framing and hanging to add some character to the space, but other than that, we're done.

Here's the before:

I'd already taken it down, but we had a clear shower curtain so that we could get some light in the shower.


And here's the after:



I really miss my red bathroom, but with the addition of the multi-colored shower curtain and the pictures I have yet to hang, I don't think it's too bad. Boring, but not too bad.

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

A Pre-schooler Version of MLK Day

Even though Ryan had yesterday off, Sydney did not. She went to school as usual and brought home her standard assortment of worksheets and coloring sheets. Normally, I glance at them and then secretly throw them away (unless they're truly spectacular or creative), but this one gave me pause:


This one is a keeper, not for the job she did coloring, but for what she said about it:

"He's black. That's why today is a holiday."
"Artin Luthen King wanted to be a preacher so we celebrate his birthday."

I couldn't stop laughing at what she learned at school. We were amused at what she took away from her lesson about MLK day, but also a bit bewildered.

We don't particularly talk about people's races or ethnicities in our house (except that she knows her friend Zoe comes from China). We talk about how people come in different shapes, sizes and colors, but we don't put labels on their races/ethnicities, so when she called him "black", we were a bit taken aback. Later, she called him brown and if you look closely at the picture, you can see that she started coloring his face black and then switched to brown as if one of the teachers had to say, "He's doesn't actually have black skin, but brown skin."

We don't know what to think or how to approach this. I guess we'll wait until she brings it up again, but I just pray it's not out in public. I can just see her pointing at a crowd of black people and yelling, "Hey! Look at all those black people!" or something equally embarrassing.

Sometimes I really do wish kids came with manuals for this kind of stuff.

Friday, January 18, 2008

Stress Relief Part Two

A big thanks to Miss Mairzy and Mommy Daisy for their stress relief tips. I kind of combined their ideas last night by putting the kids to bed and fixing myself a cup of fancy hot chocolate with tons of marshmallows; I ration my fancy (read: expensive) hot chocolate and save it for special occasions, but I figured, "Hey, what's more important than relieving stress?" so I treated myself to a cup. I just might do it again tonight since Ryan is volunteering at church this evening.

As for the stresses in my life, I decided to tackle them one by one. First, I received an e-mail saying that the kindergarten paperwork has been accepted (meaning I included everything they asked for) and will be processed in the coming weeks. Whew! There's one (kinda) down.

Second, worrying about my friend who is going through the divorce does not help him. So I'm just going to be supportive and listen when he needs it. And I'm going to keep my mouth shut when his soon-to-be ex-wife tries to pry information out of me.

Third, we're going to tackle our home improvements systematically. My sister has kindly volunteered to keep the kids tomorrow so Ryan and I are going to paint our bathroom a neutral (boring) color. And he has Monday off so we'll probably be able to finish up the bathroom and maybe even move on to the laundry room.

Fourth, I will try to delegate more household chores so that I'm not so exhausted by the end of the day. Sydney is old enough to start doing some chores so I'm going to start getting her to do some things around here. She's already found a favorite:


So....keep those stress relief tips coming and if any baby boy names happen to cross your mind, jot those down for me, too, okay? We've got about 10 girl names and TWO boy names. Which, if history repeats itself, means that this baby is a boy.

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Stress Relief Ideas

So here's an informal poll for you: what do you do to relieve stress? Do you shop? Do you eat (and is chocolate involved)? Take a bath? I want to hear your ideas.

When I was teaching I had a LOT of stress. A LOT. I'm convinced that teaching high school should rank right up there with air traffic controller on those lists of most stressful jobs. To combat stress, Ryan and I would go out for sushi or I'd take a long, hot bath with a nice, cheesy novel and glass of wine. Well, thanks to this pregnancy, all I'm left with of my old stress-relief plan is the novel. I've read two of them in the past week, but without the hot bath and glass of wine, they really didn't do anything for me.

Any ideas? Between the pregnancy, two kids (one who refuses to START talking or walking and the other who refuses to STOP talking), the prospect of spending the next three months spending every weekend working on our house for sale/rental, searching for a new house, worrying about kindergarten entrance tests and worrying about a friend who is going through the NASTIEST divorce I've ever witnessed (and I know you read this and I do not blame you at all for my worrying - seriously), I just cannot get rid of all the stress. And stress, as we all know, is not beneficial to a pregnant woman.! Ideas, please.

Both my sanity and unborn child thank you in advance.

Monday, January 14, 2008

Another Milestone

Liam has reached another milestone. No, he's not walking. I wish he would walk, but he seems determined to make me look like the worst mother in the world for his 15 month checkup in a few weeks. According to the pediatrician, by 15 months he should be walking, talking, off the bottle and off the pacifier. We're 0-4 according to her list. Oh well.

Anyway, the milestone is........drumroll, please........

Liam is now sleeping in Sydney's room (we only have two bedrooms). Ryan and I have our room back!!!! At least for the next four months. I've been using naptimes to clean and organize our room (two activities that are way overdue). I've been using bedtimes to watch TV in bed. Oh, how I've missed watching TV in bed in the evenings.

Both Liam and Sydney have adjusted fairly well to the change. He fussed a bit at bedtime his first night but slept through the night until 7 am (yeah!) and fell asleep with no problems last night. Granted, he woke up at 6:30 this morning, but I hurriedly snatched him up and we had a nice snuggle in my bed until Sydney woke up.

As for the pediatrician's milestones, I'm pretty sure the evening bottle will be dropped by his checkup, but the walking and talking are up to him. And the pacifier - well, she's just going to have to give me the "evil eye" on that one. He's about to go through some major changes and I'm not taking away that pacifier until we are nice and settled in our new house sometime next summer/fall. She'll just have to live with it. And I'll just have to endure the "evil eye" until then.

Saturday, January 12, 2008

January? I Don't Think So

Days like this make the stifling dog days of August and September almost worth it. How many other people can spend a day in mid January like this?

Sydney eating her picnic lunch

Quality time with Daddy

"Can I please take this hat off?"

Swinging....Sydney's favorite park activity

We plan on going back tomorrow afternoon with some friends. Sydney can't wait.

Friday, January 11, 2008

Halfway There

When I was pregnant with Sydney, if you asked me on any given day how far along I was, I could answer you in an instant. It only took me a few seconds longer when I was pregnant with Liam. This time around, however, when someone asks me how far along I am, it takes me forever to come up with the answer.

Thanks to the weekly Baby Center e-mail update, however, I can confidently say that I am now halfway through this pregnancy. Actually, I'm more than halfway seeing as I'll have a c-section a couple of weeks before my due date. And I'm starting to get really nervous.

With Sydney, I was nervous about the c-section. Having been through two of them now, I'm not nervous about that. With Liam, I was worried throughout the entire pregnancy, from a miscarriage scare to early contractions. I was just worried about keeping him in utero for at least 36 weeks.

This time, thankfully, there haven't been any complications (knock wood), but I'm still nervous. I'm nervous that I'm not going to be able to handle a 5 year old, 18 month old and a newborn. I'm nervous that Liam will not react well to not being the baby anymore. I'm nervous that we will not survive the summer with a baby, packing up our belongings and moving (not to mention house hunting). I'm nervous that I'll screw up the kindergarten enrollment process and I'll have to home school Sydney. I'm nervous that I will not get to sleep through the night again until 2009.

But as with all huge life changes, I know we'll get through it. It will be hard, it may be messy and I know for sure it will be an emotional few months, but we'll get through it. I hope.

Monday, January 7, 2008

Decisions, decisions........

Remember George? He's the neighbor who once promised to sell his house to us (so we could build on to our house and have a yard) and then backed out at the last minute. Well, we were upset, but we got over it and decided to move on with our lives. Hence, our decision to move to the Land of Fruit next summer.

Well, once again, George is screwing with our heads. Several things have transpired since my last mention of him: his son's girlfriend had a baby and the son temporarily moved in with her and her family and George's company has decided to open a location in a tiny town down the Texas coast. It just happens to be the same tiny town in which George owns some property. And he's been planning to build a house on said property and retire there. He's hoping to get transferred down there and that means - you guessed it - he'd be moving.

BUT (you knew there had to be a "but", right?), he's going to let his loser son do what he wants with the house. He might live in it (since rents in the area are so high) or he might sell it. Who knows.

Ryan asked him to keep us in mind if he decides to sell, but who knows when that might be. It could be next month or it could be three years from now.

In any case, we're back to square one on the "stay or move" question. We've pretty much decided against adding onto our house in it's current state (WAY too expensive to build "up" which is our only option) and we had resigned ourselves to moving to the Land of Fruit. But now, if there's a chance we could get his property and add onto our house and have a yard, then we feel like we have to take it.

I've started the paperwork to get Sydney into a good elementary school here just in case, but now we have to decide if we want to wait on George - AGAIN - or just move to the Land of Fruit and get on with our lives.


Thursday, January 3, 2008

Baby Names, Sydney Style

In trying to get Sydney involved in the preparations for the baby, we've been asking her what she thinks we should name it. These are her suggestions so far:

Santa Claus

I don't think so.

But what can I expect from the child who was part of this conversation:

Ryan to Sydney (after hearing someone pass gas at the dinner table): "Was that you?"

Sydney (with a straight face): "No, that was Liam. Mine was quiet."

Wednesday, January 2, 2008

Ultrasounds, Sign Language and New Cars - Oh My!

I feel like it's been forever since I last posted. The whole NaBloPoMo thing got me used to posting everyday so missing an entire week felt really strange to me, I suppose. Anyway, we're finally home from our holiday trips and settling back into life and while I'm thrilled to get back on our schedules, I know I'll be bored out of my mind by the end of January. Here's what's new since my last post:

Ultrasound - We had our BIG ultrasound this morning. Thankfully, the nightmare I had a few weeks ago about seeing a sock monkey (yes, a sock monkey) on the ultrasound screen instead of a baby did not come true. There were two arms, two legs, a spine, a heart and everything else you see in those amazing ultrasounds. The doctor could tell the gender, but we chose to not find out so we'll be surprised in May. Ryan and I both scrutinized the screen, but we couldn't tell one way or the other. The baby did measure a week larger than expected for 19 weeks (maybe that's because I gained 5 pounds this month!) so my due date was changed to May 25th, my mom's birthday. My repeat c-section will put the actual birth date closer to May 15th, however. I guess Sydney will just have to semi-share her birthday (hers is May 13th). Unfortunately, both the VCR and the camera on the ultrasound machine were broken, so we have no video or pictures. :( I told Ryan that I hoped we could spring for a 3D ultrasound later on just so this poor third child doesn't feel so left out.

Sign Language - Liam is still not talking (or walking for that matter), but we're pretty sure he's started using some sign language. He's signed "more" several times when eating and this morning we think he even signed "Daddy" while in the ob's waiting room. As for walking, he is SO close. He stands by himself (and bends down to pick things up) and walks all over the room with his little walker toys, but still drops down to crawl mode to go somewhere. I know it will happen soon and I shouldn't feel competitive with other moms, but it sure is hard to go to play groups and see the other kids his age walking AND talking. Oh well, I know they all develop on their own time tables.

New Car - I now drive a mini-van. Sigh.


On Monday, Ryan sold his Tahoe to CarMax and test drove 3 mini-vans while he waited for his truck appraisal. I drove out to meet him and test drove the Chrysler; we were also interested in a Toyota, but I didn't need to test drive that one having done so a month ago at another dealership. We were happy with the Chrysler's amenities (every bell and whistle you can possibly imagine) and it's price. It had 27,000 miles on it already, but it's in impeccable condition. Sydney loves it (and all the buttons that she can push) and I have to admit that it is really roomy, drives well and will make our lives much easier. Now if I can just get over the whole "I drive a mini-van" feeling.

How about you? Any big news over the holidays?