Friday, December 23, 2011
Sunday, December 18, 2011
Friday, December 9, 2011
Thursday, December 8, 2011
Total Weight Gain/Loss: As of our dr's appointment yesterday, I am at +37. Water retention has set in and I think it's definitely contributing to some of my weight gain. Frustrating for that total number, but I also keep reminding myself that it's not "true" weight gain but simply a fact of the late stages of pregnancy.
Gender: Our baby girl...Elyse Ann! Oh how excited we are to meet you!
Movement: She's still a moving little girl! I keep reminding her that she would have much more room to do her gymnastics & dance moves if she would come out and join her momma & daddy in the real world.
Sleep: As I reach the end of this pregnancy I am so grateful that good, quality sleep has been fairly easy to come by! A quick visit to the bathroom each night and I'm back to bed for the rest of the night...guess that probably won't be happening much longer!
What I miss: Putting on my own shoes and socks and tying my own shoes! ha! I've resorted to having Hubby help me with this and it's super annoying! I also can't wear most of my knee-high/riding boots because of the swelling in my legs...oh the joys of late-stage pregnancy!
Cravings: The yummy holiday treats have started to roll in and I've definitely taking advantage of those! But I wouldn't really call it a craving...more like just a desire to eat whatever I want at this point!
Symptoms: Definitely just a pregnant momma waiting on the arrival of her baby girl...I haven't really had any "labor" symptoms except for Braxton Hicks so I'm not sure when she's going to decide to arrive!
Maternity Clothes: This weeks' photo is all non-maternity except for a camisole underneath. I've made do with a lot of the clothes I already had in my closet and I'm making some of the flowing, loose-fitting summery dresses work with leggings and cardigans. I'm not about to go buy any more maternity clothes at this stage in the game!
Best Moment this week: I guess it would be our dr's appointment yesterday. Elyse was hiding from our nurse and so finding her heartbeat was a little more difficult than normal...but once we tracked her down it was good & strong! The dr's appointment was also a little frustrating because I haven't made any progress since last week. Ughhh....come on baby girl, come out and play with us!
Baby To-Do List: We're as ready as we'll ever be. The bags are mostly packed except for our toiletries, our Christmas shopping is virtually done and we have big plans to do most of the wrapping tonight. Now it's just time to wait for her arrival...and who knows when that will be!
And another belly bump photo...I keep hoping that each week will be the last appearance of my big belly! Maybe this week will be the last one...
Tuesday, December 6, 2011
Sunday, December 4, 2011
No major plans were made and for the most part we tried to keep our schedules pretty clear. In my mind we did this for several reasons...a lack of knowledge in how I would be feeling, the possibility of an early delivery, and maybe most practically--the desire to watch our spending with a new baby on the way. While there have been a few times where I miss having those crazy weekends, the ability to veg out and relax for an entire weekend has certainly been enjoyable.
Hubby & I had absolutely NO must do items this weekend which meant I've spent most of it in comfy clothes doing the few things I needed to do from the couch. (let's be honest, it's also my vain attempt to help my ankle bones find the service again! ha!)
Friday evening we attended a Friends & Family event at the new Famous Dave's location that is opening in our area. One of the business partners is a client of ours and so Hubby & I joined my parents for a business appearance, that was really nothing more than an absolutely free meal of BBQ! We had a huge meal and I honestly probably ate WAY too much...but it was all so yummy! We also made a couple of other quick stops to take care of some additional Christmas shopping and we also stopped at Target for a few things for Elyse.
I've decided that quick stops for Elyse are going to be part of our weekly routine...similar to those stops at Lowe's & Home Depot we had 4 1/2 years ago with a new house to furnish! Except this time it's a little human being we have to furnish! ha!
Yesterday was ridiculously laid back for me. I had spent Friday night sleeping on the couch for comfort & I honestly didn't hardly move until early afternoon. I had been ordered to take it easy from Hubby & my momma so I didn't want to disobey! I wasn't completely unproductive as I got our Christmas cards all ready to be mailed...definitely one of my goals to complete before Elyse arrives.
We headed out last night for a nice dinner at one of favorite places...5 Spice China Grill. It's basically a local version of PF Chang's but in my opinion it's SO much better. They seriously have the BEST lobster & cream cheese wontons I've ever eaten! We also made a quick pass by one of the crazy Christmas light displays in town, stopped for a bit of froyo, and then came home for a movie on the couch. We had rented Crazy, Stupid, Love and it was ok...I fell asleep for about 30 minutes in the middle so I honestly can't give it an honest review, but Hubby enjoyed it.
Today has been another laid-back day on the couch. We headed to church, grabbed some lunch and I came home for a brief nap. We have our last official Financial Peace small group tonight and then it will be time for another week.
I honestly can't believe that anytime I could be away from the blog world for awhile because Elyse has arrived...don't worry I'll be posting a photo and birth announcement as soon as I can after she makes her appearance!
Friday, December 2, 2011
I invited close to 15 fabulous ladies from my various circle's of friends, but unfortunately with crazy December schedules only about 5 were able to attend. At first I was honestly a little bummed, but our small intimate group made it a wonderful evening anyway. We were able to all sit around the same table, share in the same conversation, and eat way too many cookies since there were only 6 varieties to choose from!
Last year I had 12 of my friends come and that was almost TOO many cookies to be able to try them all! I know that may be hard to believe but after stuffing our bellies with yummy soup & appetizers, there's only so much room for the sweet treats. However, I just love filling my house with fun conversation and love that comes when all my girlfriend's get together so I wouldn't trade a big crowd for anything.
The recipe I chose this year was of course from Pinterest and could certainly be considered a Pinterest Success! Red Velvet Gooey Butter Cookies...so delicious!
This pregnant momma honestly wasn't too disappointed with the small crowd, since a small crowd also means a quick & easy cleanup! Next year hopefully the turnout will be a little more successful, but if not I know that me & my girlfriends will make the best of it!
Thursday, December 1, 2011
Total Weight Gain/Loss: As of our dr's appointment yesterday, I am at +35...which is officially on the high end of average. It seems that my weight gain has practically disappeared and the only weight I'm gaining is going straight to Elyse! However, the water retention has definitely begun...I figure I've made it this far, so I should consider that a success.
Gender: Our baby girl...Elyse Ann! Oh how excited we are to meet you!
Movement: Lots & lots of rolling...and honestly there are times when I mistake her movement for a nice long Braxton Hicks contraction! It's quite amazing to lay in bed or on the couch and watch my belly roll from one side to another.
Sleep: Thankfully sleep is still coming very easily. I wake up feeling rested and ready to go. I'm trying to enjoy my sleep as much as I can since I know these sleep-filled nights will be gone very soon!
What I miss: The countdown is on at this point, and anything that I miss I know is only temporary. I'm looking forward to having turkey sandwiches, caesar salad, putting on my own shoes & socks, painting my own toenails (thanks mom!), and lots of other things...but holding Elyse in my arms instead of my belly will be oh so worth it!
Cravings: 1st pregnancy = Craving free for this momma! I've also pretty much decided that I've made it this far...I'll eat what I want! ha! My appetite isn't crazy out of control so I just eat small servings of yummy holiday goodies & seem to be pretty satisfied!
Symptoms: Hmmm...water retention is the big one this week. I feel like my face has gotten a wee-bit puffy and my cankles are officially here to stay. Sure, they might unswell just a bit, but for the most part I wake up with cankles and go to bed with cankles. Thank goodness for leggings & Ugg boots!
Maternity Clothes: Honestly everything I have on in this week's photo is non-maternity. I'm pretty proud of that fact & so glad that the various fashion styles right now have enough "flexibility" to be worn at all stages of pregnancy. Non-maternity pants were pushed to the back of the closet and the bottom of the drawer weeks ago...but leggings & tunics are still able to be worn in some cases!
Best Moment this week: Our dr's appointment yesterday was pretty wonderful. I breath an internal sigh of relief every time I hear that heartbeat going crazy! While I hadn't made any huge progress, I'm still moving forward which is encouraging. My mom is predicting Dec. 10...anyone else have predictions?
Baby To-Do List: I've got a small list of items I need to pick up for the hospital but for the most part I'm just SO ready for her arrival. I've started gathering things for our hospital stay in the nursery so that when the time comes we can throw everything in a bag and head out.
The first official December belly bump...I guess we'll for sure be having a December baby! We've been planning on a Christmas darling all this time...might as well make it official!
Monday, November 28, 2011
We started off with our one and only Thanksgiving celebration on Thursday at my parents' house. I was in charge of the mashed potatoes and thankfully 2 pans turned out to be enough for the almost 40 people who filled my parents house. I was a big fat failure when it came to taking pictures on Thanksgiving, but I was forced to spend plenty of time resting so as not to overdue it with helping out. Definitely a hard thing for this girl to do!
We had a wonderful meal, followed by some time outside in the beautiful weather. As is tradition, we also had a Thanksgiving Day craft for the ladies. I'd share more details...but some of it turned into a Christmas gift so I can't share the details!
and much, much more that I'll get show later on!
One of the beautiful light displays!
Friday, November 25, 2011
Total Weight Gain/Loss: And some of the big news from our first weekly appointment is...NO WEIGHT GAIN in the past 10 days! Yippee! At this point my doctor wasn't concerned or anything because my stomach is still growing and Elyse is most likely packing on the pounds as well. This means that I'm still at about the +33 mark for the entire pregnancy...not too bad if I do say so myself!
Gender: Our beautiful baby girl Elyse Ann...she hasn't even arrived and I know that she'll be just beautiful!
Movement: Gymnastics, dance movements, sports...I'm not exactly sure what all she's doing there, but she's a busy girl! There have been some recent times where she decides to push her little booty out so far & it's not very comfortable for this momma!
Sleep: Sleep still continues to be pretty great. Sure there are those occasional nights when I'll toss and turn or wake up early, but thankfully sleep has followed me into my last weeks!
What I miss: Life as a pregnant woman has become my normal, but I'm certainly hoping to go back to my normal self very soon! I still miss bending over & my energy level & being able to go, go, go...but this is all just part of the process!
Cravings: 1st pregnancy = Craving free for this momma! And my hunger level seems to be completely back to normal...I've been doing great with 3 daily meals & maybe just one small snack.
Symptoms: I just seem to get uncomfortable really fast! I can't sit in one position for too long without moving. I've got some slightly swollen ankles that are hanging around for now and at times those slightly swollen ankles become full-on cankles! Thankfully lots of water & just putting my feet up for a bit seems to take care of the cankles! ha!
Maternity Clothes: Not really an option at this point! ha! I've got several non-maternity items that I can still wear but those items are becoming fewer & fewer!
Best Moment this week: Lots of fun this week! We had our first weekly appointment on Monday & Elyse has definitely started to make her decent. Of course my doctor isn't going to give any predictions of going early, but it's so nice to know that she's making some progress! We also found out that she's head down & all ready to go! We couldn't really ask for more...
It was also a pretty awesome feeling to know that her nursery is practically completely ready for her arrival. We certainly still have some details to deal with, but for the most part we're as ready as we'll ever be!
Baby To-Do List: The list has been put on hold for the most part until after Thanksgiving. But after Thanksgiving we've definitely got some things to do! You know those really un important things like installing the car seat, packing the diaper bag, preparing the hospital bag, etc.! ha!
And....here's the Thanksgiving baby bump! I can't believe that at next Thanksgiving our baby girl will be almost a year old!
Thursday, November 24, 2011
Wednesday, November 23, 2011
My goal was Thanksgiving, so I thought it only appropriate to post the big reveal the day before. Most all of the pictures can speak for themselves...so here it is...our baby girl's nursery!
Monday, November 21, 2011
Friday, November 18, 2011
As we prepare for Elyse's arrival I know that we are about to embark on an experience that will require teamwork in a way that we've never even imagined. Teamwork to make our baby happy & to protect her & to raise her in a home that loves Jesus & to teach her to respect others & have respect for herself & to discipline her when necessary & love on her every second of every day.
However, today as we are 4 weeks away from Elyse's due date, Hubby & I are less than 6 hours away from starting a new adventure where being a team will be ever so important. At 5:00 today, he will pack up his things and walk away from the job he's held for the past 5 1/2 years. At the end of the day today, he'll leave his job as an accountant and enter the world of insurance.
Starting on Monday, Nick will come to work with my dad & I and the other employees here at our insurance agency. Beginning then, we will have become a team in almost every single sense of the word...at home, at work, and as we prepare for parenthood. Once Elyse arrives, and when I eventually come back to work we'll be together practically all hours of the day. We'll ride to work together, drop Elyse off together, have lunch together, ride home together and spend our evenings playing with our baby girl together.
While some couples might be scared of all that "quantity time" we're so excited for the additional "quality time" it will bring us as a family. We have been praying & hoping for God to open doors in regards to Nick's job, and for both us & my parents, this seemed to be exactly where God wants us to be. This certainly wasn't a situation where doors were flung wide open...more like a situation where doors were slammed shut.
We certainly don't know exactly how all the details are going to play out, and we know that it certainly isn't going to be easy...but we are so excited to see how God uses this new opportunity to strengthen our family & make us stronger than ever!
A team...now and forevermore.
Thursday, November 17, 2011
Today over at Through Clouded Glass, Callie is hosting a link-up for us to all share our Salvation stories. So many times I mention my salvation or faith in Jesus Christ, but I've never actually taken the time to put my testimony out there for the world to see.
So here it is, the story behind the biggest & most important decision I've ever made in my life...
Unlike some Christians, I honestly don't know the exact date or even the exact year of when I accepted Jesus as my personal savior. As I've thought about it over the years I can tell you that I was probably 11 or 12 and it happened at VBS. While I can't recall the exact date, I can tell you almost every single detail of how it happened.
When I was in elementary school my mom was the director of Vacation Bible School (VBS) and so I spent a lot of extra time at the church during that week of singing, crafts, & recreation. I remember one evening afterwards going into my parents' room and asking several questions, and then I remember asking more questions of my mom the next morning before we headed off to church.
Apparently, my mom knew that I was oh so close to making a big decision and she asked my pastor to speak with me. I'm not gonna lie, I was so nervous as I went into his study & talked about what it meant to be a Christian, a follower of Christ. I remember repeating a very simple "sinner's prayer" after we talked and when I walked out of his office I was so excited to be able to call myself a Christian!
Being in elementary school when I made this decision, I honestly can't say that there was this HUGE change in my life when I became a Christian...while I was certainly a sinner, I hadn't been some radical child who was making incredibly poor decisions. However, I knew I needed Jesus in my life and I also knew I wanted to go to heaven...and a personal relationship with Christ was the only way I was going to get there. Because as a small child of course you want to go to the good place and not the bad place!
Obviously as I grew up, I went through the peaks & valleys of my Christian walk. I had those moments when I was on fire for Christ and ready to share my faith with anyone who walked by. Of course I also had those times when I was a typical high school student with my own version of rebellion (even if it was a little more calm than what most might consider rebellion). I was always involved in youth group & managed to be a 'good kid' even in the craziness of high school.
As I graduated and went onto college, I really feel like I came into my own as a Christian girl. During the second semester of my sophomore year, I joined Campus Crusade for Christ and it changed my life. It challenged me to be a better person & to strive to live like Christ instead of just going through the motions of daily living. It was with Crusade that I really feel like I grasped what it meant to be a Christian and why that decision I had made all those years ago was so important.
I could go on and on about how God has put incredible people in my life to push me to be a better person and how those same people have helped me to find my place. Just as one incredible example...one of my best friends' Jennifer I met in a college class...she was involved in Crusade & I decided to join her...we lived together for 2 years and became great friends...and it's actually she & her husband who are the reason that Hubby & I first visited Northbridge Church. While she & I aren't in small group together, it's because of her that Hubby & I have found a place where we feel like we belong. We've learned so much about ourselves & the importance of relying on Christ in every single aspect of our life.
God does some absolutely incredibile things if we'll just get out of the way and let Him have His way with our everyday life...Living a life without Christ is hard for me to even imagine, and something I would never want to experience.
~Go check out Callie's blog for some more fabulous salvation stories!
Tuesday, November 15, 2011
On October 1st, my aunts held a family shower for us and all I can say is WOW! We received most a lot of our big items at the family shower which was wonderful! We received our stroller, carseat & extra base, Mamaroo swing, baby monitor, pack-n-play, lots of cute clothes, toys, & random items from our registry! We are so blessed by our families!
I posted a little bit about it in this post, but here are a few more photos from the fabulous morning!
My momma & sister-in-law! The shower was held in the morning so the menu consisted of yummy strawberry muffins, fruit, mini quiche, mini chocolate eclairs, and veggies...It was delicious!