Oct 24, 2008

My Friend's Wedding

So after the baby shower Jason and I headed off to my friend Noelle's wedding. It was one of the most fun I've been to and I'm super excited for them as I think they are a fantabulous couple!

She had all of the guests hum the bridal march as she walked down the aisle and that pretty much set the tone for the whole wedding. There was much laughter and lots of dancing. I got to catch up with high school friends I hadn't seen in forever. AND there was a free photo booth that we had WAY too much fun with. I'll try to post the pictures when I have the time to scan them on.

Here we are all decked out for the festivities and here's a photo I stole off of Noelle's blog :)

Don't Hate Me But....

...I'm done with my Christmas shopping. Yes, you read correctly. Done. And the ones that are at my house and not arriving my mail because I ordered them online are wrapped. Beautifully wrapped, I might add.

Now a few disclaimers....We only do one present per person. We love to give but we believe Christmas is not about material things, but about the birth of our Savior and we prefer to keep the focus on Him. So we don't have ALL that much to buy.

Also, I love buying gifts for others and LOVE wrapping presents more than is probably normal so it's not a chore for me at all.

And lastly, I usually get it all done early so that I can just decorate and sit back and really focus on the meaning of the Season, but it's usually not THIS early. It is THIS early because I am determined to be as thoroughly prepared for baby as we can be so that before and after baby arrives we can totally focus on her!

Oct 20, 2008

First Baby Shower

Jason's mom threw me my first baby shower Saturday morning. It was a beautiful day, the pink decorations were awesome, the food was delicious and plentiful and most of all the company of family and friends was great! Here are some pics! Thank-you a million times over Diane and everyone!

Oct 17, 2008

Baby FUN!

So here's a picture of me on our weekend away (I'm almost 33 weeks here).
Also, I had a BALL decorating Ariella's room on Tuesday. I bought letters and painted them and then found these butterflies and dragonflies and painted them as well. Then I put them on the wall and hand painted in between them to make them look like they are flying around the room and create a border. I am more than ecstatic about the way it turned out! The only thing left is to get an insulated blind for the window and create some kind of art to put above the changing table.

Breast Feeding

Okay, people. I'm really excited about breast feeding so allow me to air my feelings on this topic!

I just cannot stop talking about my doula! I love her. I feel so fortunate to have taken the 6-week class with her, have extra sessions with her and now I’ve taken her breast-feeding class as well.

With all the reading and research I had done prior to the class, I was already totally sold on breast-feeding. But now it’s just written in stone people. I learned even so much more. Hopefully it all comes naturally, but if not, I am 100% dedicated to getting the support I need and making it work!

Through the research I had already done, I knew that breastfeeding is proven to increase babies IQ, strengthen their immune system, and decrease their chances of obesity, diabetes and allergies. I also knew that it increased bonding and decreased mom’s risk of osteoporosis, and ovarian and breast cancer. I also knew that it decreases bleeding after delivery, helps the uterus return to it’s pre-pregnant size, helps your stomach muscles to return to pre-pregnancy status and burns a TON of calories.

But I didn’t know how bad formula was. I bought into the company’s claims that it’s just as good. Those same companies sell that line of poo to doctors who sell that to their patients and I think that’s awful! It’s nothing like breast milk and contains tons of things that are actually bad for babies!

I also bought into the idea that some people just won’t be able to breastfeed. But we learned so much about what you can do to help your baby learn to feed and to help your milk come in and we watched video after video of skilled lactation consultants help babies and moms become successful, who had been unable to breastfeed for as long as the first month and a half of life.

We also learned about how using pain medication, pitocin and epidurals during labor can significantly reduce a baby’s ability to breast-feed. We learned about studies and saw videos of babies who had been born naturally with no meds and ones who had not and the difference in their instinct and ability to breast-feed was very distinct.

We also learned a lot about the hormones. Prolactin makes the milk and it is also the hormone that causes the mother to be fiercely protective of her baby so it strongly bonds mom and baby. And Oxytocin releases the milk and is the “love” hormone. So it also builds that strong bond between mom and baby. Prolactin and Oxytocin are released each time you feed. So each time you feed you not only get a rush of these hormones that soothe and calm both mom and baby but also cause the two to bond stronger and stronger. If you don’t breastfeed those hormones decrease and fade away! Why would you ever want to miss out on that!?

Well, I know this is super long and I’m on my soapbox, but this is only the tip of the iceberg of all that I’ve learned and as you can tell, I’m very excited about it all!

Oh My Aching Back

If you know me, then you also know my philosophy on being pregnant. I think it is a wonderful, normal, natural, God-designed part of being a woman. I think society and too many woman treat it like an illness where you need to lie around and do nothing for 9 months. Oh contraire! At the end of 40 weeks, you’ve got the biggest work out of your life! Would you lie around and not stay in shape for a marathon? I think not! I think pregnancy should not stop you from being active, staying in shape, doing what you love and living life!

Soooo, when J and I took our little chairlift ride up the mountain and the little disclaimer said, “Only those who are physically unable to walk down the mountain should ride the lift back down.” I thought: Physically unable? Me? What because I’m 7 months pregnant? NONSENSE! There shall be no riding down for this little mama. And so we hoofed it. Several people commented on my rotund belly that I was carrying down the mountain and little pride welled up inside of me as we passed them with speed.

Well, I’ll admit, pregnancy does change a few things. Like, apparently the extra weight in front puts a lot of extra strain on the back. Because after we got down and relaxed a little, the old back muscles had a chance to cool down and tighten up. When I went to move around again I was in some pretty intense pain. I took a hot shower, had J rub my back and got up and moving around again but nothing really touched it. That night I got hardly any sleep, the car ride home was torture, and I’ve been in pretty much constant contact with a heating pad ever since.

But would I do it again? You betcha! I’m THAT stubborn! :)

5th Anniversary

It was wonderful! True to my word, the day we got there, I entered the hotel room and did not leave it for the rest of the evening. We just rested and vegged out, got our fill of cable TV for the year, and ordered take out to eat in our room.

The second day we slept in to our hearts content, ate donuts for breakfast that we bought along the way, and then took our time browsing a huge arts and crafts show. In the afternoon we took a ride up the super-quad and walked down the mountain! The weather was amazing and the views were glorious. We got lunch from my fave place on the Mt., D’Ellies and had a little picnic outdoors. More vegging followed and then we capped the night off with dinner out.

On Monday, we slept in to our hearts content once again and then headed home on rejuvenated and reconnected!

Oh, and I'm not even kidding...As we were packing to leave, Jason bent over to zip his suitcase and when he stood up he hit his head so hard on an overhanging shelf that it knocked him backwards, he swore and it split his head open. After applying much pressure and checking it out, we decided it did not warrant stitches. But it was close people!

Oct 10, 2008

Belated Anniversary

Since our actual anniversary involved one big 'ol fight, stuffing the last of our belongings in our car as we moved out of our home and many tears on my part as I said goodbye to the house I love, we decided to celebrate our anniversary a little belated.

We knew that Jason would have a three day weekend, that we would be moved into our new place and that we would desperately need a weekend to relax, reconnect and regroup before we bring a child into this world. Boy were we right!

So this weekend, we shall be enjoying the fall foliage and each other at the Sugarloaf Inn. Can't wait!

My Husband Likes to Hurt Himself

I don't know if I've blogged about past incidents, but my husband gets all weepy eyed if he stays away from the ER too long, so he likes create situations in which he needs to go get stitches.

There was the time he went to jump over a baby gate and smacked the top of his head so hard on the door jam that it knocked him right back on his keister and required six stitches.

Then there was the time that his chain saw was still winding down as he took a step forward into it and gashed his knee (because he WASN'T wearing chaps) and that required about 8 stitches.

And then there was Wednesday night. I get a message at work that goes like this, "Hi Sarah, this is Wendy. I'm driving your husband to the ER so could you meet him over there?" (Thanks for the mild heart attack there chica!)

Come to find out, this time my husband was alone in the woods in his tree stand sawing down a few branches so he could get a better view. He was sawing with his left hand (Yes, he's right handed, don't ask...I don't know!) and he had his right hand directly under the branch he was cutting (genious!) Well you guessed it, when the saw cut through the branch it continued straight on down through his hand. So he scampered down the tree, ran to the house and only had someone drive him to the ER because he couldn't drive a standard. At the ER he got 10 stitches and the doctor said like 100 times how lucky he was that he didn't cut the vein or the tendons that you could clearly see through the gaping wound. (Yes I looked, it was cool.)

The only thing he could think about was bow hunting and fly fishing. He must have tried to get the doctor to say it was okay to do these things like a million times and every time the doctor was like, "Ummm, no." "Did you hear me? No." "The answer is still NO!"

I so look forward to whatever brilliant mishap he gets himself into next and if the pattern continues we can look forward to 12 stitches!

Oct 7, 2008

Notes From Work

I work with adults with mental illnesses and I swear they touch my life more every day than I think I might ever touch theirs. So here’s a little glimpse and a little reflection. (PS: I know my grammar but I’m going to use “they” in place of a singular pronoun because I think using he/she through the whole thing will kill it!)

This person that I work with is probably the person who you tense up around when you meet them in public. This person could easily be that one that your stare lingers on a little longer than normal because they often look unkempt or unruly or are hard to understand because of the mumbling or rambling way they speak. This person is probably even the person that strikes a little fear inside of you because they are talking to themselves or yelling at the voices that are tormenting them. Yup, that all accurately describes many of the kind souls that I work with.

Because you see, if you were me, you’d also get to see that this is the same person who has a sharper wit and funnier sense of humor than anyone I know. This is the same person who cracks me up every time I turn around. This is the same person who is more musically talented than I could ever dream of being. This is the same person that asks how my unborn baby and me are doing every day and refers to me as “you two”. This is the same person who encourages me to take it easy and looks out for my wellbeing. This is the same person who, when they learned I was having a little girl and that babies can hear people outside the womb, started talking to Ella in the most tender voice you’ve ever hear, using her name and calling her “little one”.

So that’s a glimpse in what I get to see, and what I get to experience. I think I am so fortunate and I think I have an awesome job! So next time you see that person out in public... I beg you, try to see, or at least imagine more than just the obvious that everyone else is staring at.

There's a skunk in the house!

Okay, so I may have gotten a little carried a way with the paint. What can I say, I was on a roll and I just couldn’t stop myself! If y’all call SPCA on me we will have some serious problems, because believe me, this cat loved it and he is in no distress whatsoever. He kept head butting the paint brush and walking under the roller and rubbing his back on it as I held it for him. He practically painted himself!

The Little Things

It is so satisfying to be getting back to normal. Sure our weekends and all my days off up until this point have been filled with unpacking and house projects. But this week we set Sunday aside. After church we went apple picking, visited with some friends and then went out on a date and came home and snuggled up to watch a movie. Oh, how I’ve missed that quality time.

And I also feel like I have the time and energy to do the little things again. I was just SO happy last night as I packed Jason a lunch for the next day and slipped in a cute little note written on his napkin. Can he make his own lunch? Sure he can. But Jason’s love language is acts of service. And the fact that he won’t have to make that lunch because I spent a measly ten minutes making sure he eats well will cause him to feel so loved and cared for that it will bring a tenfold return in our relationship. Now that’s a good investment!


Yet another project checked off my to do list. Oh man, you have NO idea how much I like making lists and checking things off. I must be Santa reincarnate! (Don’t worry people, I don’t really believe in reincarnation...I was just taking a stab at trying to be funny.) So we finished painting and decorating the main bathroom. Here’s a before an after. Now I just have one more bathroom, and two hallways to paint and the inside of the casa is done!


Check out my doula at her website, Your Birth Connection

So we’ve hired ourselves a doula! We hired the doula that taught our hypno-birthing class to continue our care and to attend our birth. We love her. She is funny and super laid back and tells it like it is. She is just the personality I think we’ll need. Not to mention she has 23 years of experience and many stories of how she used creative ways to help moms birth naturally and prove skeptical medical doctors wrong when they came in and said things like “I’ll give you another half an hour but I don’t think you can push this baby out.”

At first Jason did not want a doula because he though then there would be nothing left for him to do. But then we met Evelyn and he really likes her and he’s come full circle. Now he wants her there and he’s relieved because he knows that she’s not going to take his place, she’s going to help him. She’ll be there to tell him what he can do to help me when he has no clue :) and she’ll be there to explain things to us and talk to us about risks and benefits and natural options that we can try before any medicine or medical intervention is used. Oh! We’re just so excited.

And she’s not just there for the birth. We meet with her regularly up until the birth so that she can get to know us and take on our values and help create the birth experience that we want. Not to mention that fact that she’s going to do hypnosis sessions with me to help me to continue to prepare to hypno-birth AND she’ll be there to help me with hypno-birthing every step of the way during labor. I’m very excited for all this! Here is her website. Check it out!

Oct 3, 2008

Baby Updates

So the last appointment we obviously found out it is a girl, I only gained one pound and she is perfectly positioned! I think I am equally excited about all three of those things. I feel her kicking under my right ribs all the time. Sometimes she wakes me up at night. She is very active! Here I am at 30 weeks! The same day that I found out it’s a girl for sure I went out and bought the perfect fabric. I made this valence and I’m going to use the extra to cover that pillow in the chair.Also, my drawers are starting to fill with clothing. I’ve gotten some and my mom has gotten us LOTS! At first it was all gender neutral stuff, which I still enjoy because if we have a boy next time I don’t want to have to buy ALL new stuff. But now she’s gotten me some super duper cute pink stuff. (Thanks mom!) Along with blankets and toys and diapers and such. At this rate I won’t even need any showers!

And these are the “Congratulations we’re having a girl!” flowers that Jason brought home the other night. What a sweetie!

Trailer Updates

Here are some before and after pictures of the main living space of the trailer. I think it looks fantabulous and the inside at least is starting to feel like a home! The outside still feels a little like you’re stepping onto a barren planet somewhere in outer space (due to the expanse of dirt and craters and rocks everywhere) but that too will come along in IT’S OWN timing :)