Friday, July 25, 2008

Nearing the end of twenty-six weeks!

It’s amazing that I’m almost in the third trimester. Officially on Tuesday, July 29, I will be there! Where did the second trimester go? I’m happy where we are on our projects-before-the-baby-gets-here list so far. It seemed like so much to get done, but we’re moving right along.

Clean out garage – check
Reorganize office - check
Move guest bed into office – check
Paint nursery – check
Buy and put crib together – check

Register for baby stuff – check
Buy paint for dresser – check
Repair dryer plug in house – check

Remaining tasks:
Paint dresser – this weekend, fingers crossed
Organize baby gifts and place in closet and newly painted dresser – sometime this week
Buy filing cabinet for paperwork so it’s not all over the office/guest room

The rest of the nursery organizing tasks will have to wait until after the baby shower. But until then, I can relax a little.

I had my glucose test doctor’s appointment yesterday. Yay. I hate needles, so that’s why I’m wasn’t too thrilled about getting my blood drawn again. The appointment went pretty good though. The glucose drink wasn’t bad, it tasted like orange soda. The phlebotomist was excellent as usual. Generally people can never stick me on the first try, apparently I have bad veins for drawing blood, but she always gets me the first time. I just had to wait awhile for the doctor to get back in the office – he was called to labor and delivery and delivered a little girl! How exciting! He must really like his job because when he came in the room where I was waiting, he was in a really good mood. I guess everything went well with the delivery.

Anyway, back to my little girl – her heartbeat was a strong 150 beats per minute and my belly measurements were right on target. Everything seemed great, until…

I got a call this morning from the doctor’s office. They informed me that my glucose level was slightly higher than what they’d like to see. My level was 144, and they don’t like to see higher than 140. So I have to go in to get the three-hour glucose test. Joy. Hopefully everything will be fine though. The doctor said the first test could come back as a “false positive” essentially and the longer test will tell whether or not I have gestational diabetes. The blood test also came back showing me as slightly anemic, which means I have an iron deficiency. That’s an easy fix - I just have to take an iron supplement once a day.

So until my next glucose appointment, well I guess the rest of my pregnancy, I’m going to try to be a good mommy and eat whole grains and more veggies. I have no problem getting the carbs and dairy! I could eat cheese and bread all day. I’m wondering if the iron deficiency is coming from my disgust of lots of red meat currently. I usually love the stuff, but since I’ve been pregnant I haven’t been able to look at a hamburger without gagging. The only red meat I’ve been able to stomach is a small, lean steak, and I have to eat it slowly. Another habit to reduce, not cut out completely, but reduce is my chocolate and ice cream intake. I can’t get enough of it. I’ll have to limit myself to one small dessert a day…no comment on the current intake.

The good news is I’ve only gained nine pounds since the beginning of my pregnancy. So I have to be doing something right!

How’s the little one this week? Well, she’s bee-bopping around in there more often and it still amazes me that she can kick me at the bottom of my uterus and the top at the same time. Talented one, she is. Babycenter says that Sophie is almost two pounds and should be about 14 inches long. Her hearing is improving and she should be able to hear Sheldon now or anyone else I have a conversation with…which brought up the question – can she hear the person on the other line if I’m on a cell phone? The sound is going in my head; does it reach down to her little ears? Hmmmm…. She’s also inhaling and exhaling small amounts of amniotic fluid which helps with the development of her lungs.

The countdown begins! T minus 95 days!

Monday, July 21, 2008

Down to double digits!

Wow! I can’t believe it’s already the middle of July and Sheldon and I are down to double digits in our baby debut countdown. It seems like February was just yesterday. We found out I was pregnant on Saturday, February 16. I remember the date well because we bought the fixin’s for a nice steak dinner that night, including a bottle of wine. I was curious as to whether or not I was pregnant, though thinking I probably wasn’t since the test hadn’t been positive the past four months we had tried and I didn’t feel as though I had any symptoms.

But I’d rather be safe than sorry, so I took the test that morning before Sheldon was awake. He didn’t know I had planned on taking it and was still snoozing at 5:30 a.m. when I crept out of bed wondering why I had the urge to go to the bathroom that early in the morning. I did the deed, thinking it just a formality before I could enjoy a glass of wine that night with dinner.

I turned away from the test for a brief moment, and when I turned back the result was displayed already! I WAS PREGNANT!! I was so excited I couldn’t stand it. I busted out of the bathroom, jumped on the bed and landed on Sheldon. He didn’t know what was going on. When I told him, he smiled a sleepy smile, said, “Yay!” and gave me a big hug.

Of course we couldn’t go back to sleep because we were both filled with ideas about our future plans and how that moment was the beginning of so many changes in our lives. Needless to say, that bottle of wine is still in our fridge, unopened. If anyone likes wine and thinks it may still be good, you’re welcome to it.

So here we are a few short moments later and we only have three months before we meet our little girl! She’s bee-boppin’ around in my belly while there are so many unanswered questions remaining in our new little parent brains. One thing we have no doubt about is that we love her so much already. We can’t wait to see you Sophie!

Friday, July 18, 2008

Mommy-mobile: The compromise

We did it! We bought a new vehicle! Bye-bye big rig - hello little sweet, cute, fuel-efficient ride.

The background:
We had a 2002 Dodge Ram quad-cab pick-up truck. It was sweet. It made a lot of manly, macho noises. It had a grill guard. It was 4-wheel drive and lifted. It had big tires. And it had a big price tag when it came to gas and repairs.

Sheldon has fixed minor repairs on the truck for the past couple of months. Then the big-ticket repairs started revealing themselves. We put about $1500.00 into the truck recently, and Monday we had to take the truck in to the shop again. This time, it was going to cost $5000 minimum to fix the current problems, with the added bonus that the mechanic said that we would be better off just getting a different vehicle.

Even though I was willing to keep the truck because of its lower payment, I wasn’t willing to keep putting money into it along with the high gas price that came with it. So Sheldon started his search for a new vehicle while I was working.

The compromise:
The first time Sheldon called, he found a GMC Yukon Denali. My response: “Yeah, right. Babe, you do realize that we’ll be caring for three people in a few months and we’ll have to be able to afford to drive the vehicle.” No dice for Sheldon.

The second time Sheldon called: “I found a Chevrolet quad-cad pick-up truck.” The payment was only slightly less than double what our truck payment was. My response: “Seriously, can you please look at something that is slightly more fuel-efficient? Like a Honda. Can you go look at the Honda dealership?” Sheldon’s response: Pause. “I guess.”

The third time Sheldon called: “What about a Jeep Grand Cherokee? I’m test-driving one right now. I’ll bring it by your work.” My response: “I’ll look at it, but I didn’t like it last time I drove one.” After driving it for a while, we both weren’t too impressed with the Jeep for the price the dealership was asking.

My response: “Will you just go take a quick look at the Hondas?”

Sheldon: “But I have to have something to pull my boat.”

Me: “Ah-hah! I knew that’s what you were looking for. We don’t even own a boat.”

Sheldon: “I’m going to buy one next summer.”

Me: “Who knows what will be happening next summer. We may buy a boat, we may not. What I do know is we’ll have a little girl that we’re supposed to take care of.”

Sheldon: “I know. I’ll stop by the Honda place.”

The fourth time Sheldon called: “I just drove by the Honda place. The Elements aren't too bad.” My response: “Aren’t those the ugly, boxy-looking cars?” Sheldon: “Yah, but you’ll have to see it. It’s actually pretty nice.”

So long story short, we looked at the Honda Element after I got off work. We drove it and an Accord. I LOVED the Element. I never thought I would say that, but I do. Sheldon liked it because it was still sporty-looking and not completely van or sedan-looking. We both liked the bonus of fuel-efficiency and Sheldon was happy about the Element’s ability to tow up to 1500 pounds. We could possibly own a small boat.

So here it is - our fun new car. Anyone want to go for a ride?

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Twenty-five weeks!

Only 15 weeks left! I can’t believe we’re so close to meeting our little Sophie. My belly is definitely a ball-like shape now. (Pictures to come soon). It’s getting more difficult to find a comfortable sleep position and I have sciatic nerve pain pretty frequently. But I’m happy that we’re closer to the due date and we’re getting our house baby-ready.

The most fun part about being pregnant at this point is feeling Sophie wiggle around. I wait for those moments, and when they happen I can’t help but smile. Some of her movements are strange though – I can’t figure out what she’s doing. It feels like her whole body moves across my abdomen sometimes. Other times it’s a steady, rhythmic kick, like she’s practicing ballet or something. I’m sure we’ll have an interesting little person on our hands in October.

Speaking of having a little person in October, we’ve almost completed our registries. We have one at Target and one at Babies-R-Us. The Target registry should be complete. On the Babies-R-Us registry we’re just missing the crib mattress, I think. Both registries are available to be viewed online and most items can be ordered online as well. For you mothers out there, if there’s something that I seem to be missing, please let me know so I can add it to the registry.

While we’ve been getting ready for baby at home, Sheldon and I have also been talking and thinking a lot about what my job will look like after the baby is born. Will I be home full-time and quit work? Will I work from home? Will I work part-time?

It’s funny what emotions impending motherhood stirs up. I’ve had a strong desire or feeling that I should be at home with Sophie for longer than just maternity leave from work, but I wasn’t sure what that was going to look like until recently. I’ve worked at least part-time since I was fifteen – from babysitting and bagging groceries to my current job at the local council of governments. I made it a goal to finish college before getting pregnant because a career has always been important to me. Now this nurturing, mother-like feeling has snuck up on me and I don’t know what to do with it. I feel like I may morph into a Martha Stewart, Mary Poppins blend, and I’m okay with it.

On the other hand, I feel like if I quit work, I’ll be giving up something I’ve worked so hard for. Like I’ll lose momentum in my career-life and I won’t be able to get it back. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not working my dream job or anything, but it’s a good job that gives me a lot of valuable experience. I also have the fear that I may not enjoy being home 24/7 without any adult interaction, especially since Sheldon is out of town about four days a week for work.

So I think we’ve come up with a solution and I’ve already received approval from my boss. I will be working part-time after I have Sophie. My hours will also be flexible. I’ll be required to be in the office a few hours a week, but I can also work from home. I think it’ll be a nice fit. I’m really excited that I have a great boss and I work for an organization that is willing to work with me. Everything sounds good on paper right now - I hope it actually works out that way!

All of that to say and I didn’t hardly mention the reason for all these changes. Sophie should be about 13.5 inches long and weigh about a pound and a half now. BabyCenter just says she’s gaining more fat and hair this week. She’ll be here soon!

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Paint Sophie's Room: Check

Yay! One project down, plenty more to go. We picked out the room colors last week and decided this weekend would be a good time to get started on the baby room. We painted one wall a dark pink, or in Disney colors, "Snow White's Song," and the other three walls are a beige-peach color or "Fluff-n-Stuff."

On Friday Sophie's room was cluttered with boxes of diapers, toys, clothes and a crib still in its box. Today it's painted with fresh new colors and ready to be put together. Our next big project is to re-finish Sheldon's old dresser so I have somewhere to put all her cute little outfits!

Here are some before and afters of the room.






Friday, July 11, 2008

Twenty-four weeks & a strong kicker!

It’s so exciting to feel Sophie’s kicks every day. It used to be pretty random, but by now I can feel her moving around pretty frequently. With her movements becoming stronger, I was looking forward to the day when Sheldon would be able to feel her little bumps.

And he finally did! Laying around on the morning of July 5, Sheldon had his hand just resting on my belly. I told him Sophie was moving, but he didn’t seem too thrilled about it because every time before he wasn’t able to feel anything. So he left his hand on my stomach, but he wasn’t poking or prodding around trying to feel anything, like he usually does.

All of a sudden she kicked right under his middle finger. “Did you feel that?!” I asked. At the same time, almost before I got the question out Sheldon said, “Oh my gosh! I felt that!”

I imagine she was making a move that looked something like this…

It was really neat to be able to share that experience with him. It’s hard for me to imagine having a living being inside my belly, so I know it must be even harder for Sheldon to imagine it. Being able to feel the kicks is like confirmation that I’m not just gaining weight in one concentrated area, and that we’re actually going to be parents in about 109 days!

According to BabyCenter, Sophie should be about twelve inches in length and just over a pound in weight. Amazing! It also says her brain is growing quickly and her taste buds are continuing to develop. That must be why she LOVES it when I eat sweets. I can tell, she’ll be a sweet girl.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Farewell to Our Sweet Lady

(Lady front, Jack back)

One of our sweet little girls, Lady, died Monday night. She was one of our two puppies (I say puppies because they’re our babies, not because they’re actual puppies. They’re both about six years old.) Lady was our golden retriever, lab mix. We got her when she was about six months old at the Humane Society in San Angelo. She had been abused and was initially afraid of Sheldon.

She finally warmed up to us in a few months and her little tail started to wag. It was the beginning of a fun six years with her. We got Jack, our husky mix, when Lady was starting to lighten up a bit. They became inseparable. Even when the little devils escaped from our backyard (on several occasions), they were always found together. They never left each other’s side.

Lady’s eyes always gave her away. She couldn’t speak human language, but I’d know what she was thinking most of the time. She had deep brown eyes and golden eyelashes. One movement of her eyebrow and you’d know if she was annoyed or happy. When she had done something wrong she’d put her head down, but her eyes would look up at you and she would bat her eyelashes slowly hoping you’d think she was really cute and no longer in trouble.

Our little Lady seemed really depressed when we came back from vacation at the end of June. We thought she’d snap out of it once we gave her more attention, but that wasn’t the case. She stopped eating and she would barely move all day long. Sheldon tried to feed her dog treats, ham from our fridge, and soft dog food. She wouldn’t go for any of it, which was unusual.

We let her stay in the house at night, and we’d have to carry her outside in the morning because she refused to move. We noticed her nose was dry and she stopped drinking water also. We thought we’d try taking her for a walk because she’d always get really excited about walking.

We took the leashes outside and she actually got up and was wagging her tail waiting to be leashed. Her eyes looked so excited, but her body wasn’t following. We walked out to the driveway and we passed two houses when she stopped. She wouldn’t budge.

After 15 minutes of trying to coax her into moving, we decided that wasn’t going to work so Sheldon carried her back to our backyard. This was Friday, July 4th. We tried to call our vet on Saturday, but they weren’t open their usual hours because of the holiday weekend.

Monday morning Sheldon was able to get Lady in to see the vet. After a series of tests, the vet called Sheldon in the afternoon to let him know that Lady had a pancreatic disease and had a 50/50 chance of living. However, the vet said if she responded well to the IV they had her on, she would have a good chance of making it.

Around 5 p.m. I called to get an update on Lady. Sheldon said she was responding well to the IV, so she should be fine overnight. I decided not to go see her.

The next morning around 7:30 the vet called to tell Sheldon that Lady didn’t make it through the night. Our little girl was gone.

I was devastated. Though it’s hard to lose a pet, I’m thankful that she died peacefully on her own, and Sheldon and I didn’t have to make the decision to put her down.

We were both scheduled to leave town Tuesday at noon for work functions – Sheldon in Galveston and me in Austin. Jack was taken to a boarding kennel where at least he would be with other dogs while we were gone and we wouldn’t have to worry about him.

What’s amazing to me about dogs is their sense that something is wrong, or new, or changing. The morning the vet called Sheldon Jack went to his side and started whining. At that point, I didn’t even know Sheldon was on the phone with the vet, so I hadn’t been given the news yet, but Jack knew.

With a new baby on the way, we can’t even think about getting another dog right now. I hope Jack will do ok by himself. I guess we’ll have to spoil him even more and enjoy the time we get to spend with him.
(I’ll post a picture of Lady soon).

Thursday, July 3, 2008

On Cloud Nine

Sheldon (a.k.a. Sophie’s Daddy) came home today from San Antonio with gifts for me and the little one. As soon as I saw the bag it was in, I was speechless. He picked the most perfect diaper bag ever…and it’s Coach!! I’m so excited I can’t even type! And he picked out the cutest little clothes from Carter’s. They are one of my favorite baby clothing lines. The best part of it all – it was a total surprise.

Here are some pictures of the happy momma and her spoils.