Pregnancy, Hormones, and Christmas

Wednesday, November 29, 2006 13 Comments A+ a-

I cannot believe how fast this pregnancy is flying! I’m currently between my 29th and 30th week of pregnancy and I just don’t remember my pregnancy with Devyn progressing this fast. Physically, I’m feeling pretty darn good. I had my 28-week check-up last week and I have now gained 23 pounds from the start. I cringe a little as I say that because I’m a little nervous as to how much more weight I’m going to gain these last ten weeks or so. But I know that in the end, its completely, totally, and utterly worth it. Amy and I were talking last week about weight gain during pregnancy and I told her that I’m just preparing myself to work a little harder this time around to lose the pregnancy weight but I’m sure breastfeeding will go a long way in helping that along.

At my 28-week check-up, I was still measuring about 2-3 weeks behind (and yes, this is fundal height), so my doctor (I just love her) sent me for another ultrasound to make sure that things are going okay. Honestly, I wasn’t that worried because I always measured small with Devyn and I just figured that to be the case with this one too. Imagine my surprise when the ultrasound technician said that my measurements show Hudson is measuring at 29 weeks and 4 days; approximately two days larger than he should be. Regardless, it was wonderful being able to see him again and we were also treated to a pleasant surprise when the technician pulled out the 3D ultrasound machine. We got some wonderful shots of Hudson Jay (short for Jonathan, but too long to say) and I think Jon and I both fell in love with our little guy all over again. I hope you enjoy the photos.

Emotionally I feel like I’m on a roller coaster; there’s so many ups and downs that I’m not really sure which way is up any more. I have moments of extreme highs, especially with the Christmas season here, and I’m so confident that I’ll be able to adjust to being a mommy of two that nothing can faze me. In those moments, I’m excited to meet Hudson, hold him in my arms, and love on this new life. However, on the other end of the spectrum, I have moments of complete doubt, wondering how I’ll ever love this child as much as I love Devyn. There are times I feel sad at the thought that Devyn won’t get my full attention anymore; that it won’t be just the two of us on errands or special outings. And then the moments of guilt set in as I feel I’m not giving Hudson the proper excitement and joy at his coming birth. It’s a vicious cycle, one I’d love to break but I’m sure that won’t happen until his arrival and everything just “clicks” into place. Any reassurances from veteran moms would be greatly appreciated!!

I wanted to end with this, I absolutely LOVE being pregnant during the Christmas season. Despite the fact that this is one of the most joyous times of year, there’s just something special about wandering from store to store with this belly sitting out in front of you. Strangers bestow special smiles on you; doors are held open; I’ve been ushered to the front of the line a couple of times now; and there’s just a sense of warmth coming from fellow shoppers. I do LOVE it! However, with that said, if one more person tells me I look like I’m about to pop; or is shocked when I say that I’m not due until February; or kindly tells me his friend/neighbor/relative is due next week and I’m bigger than she is; I may lose it… Christmas spirit or not!

ABC Meme

Tuesday, November 28, 2006 3 Comments A+ a-

Mary, from Crankin' Out the Hits, tagged me to do this ABC meme, so enjoy!

A - Available/Single?
Of course not; been in a loving, supportive relationship for 9+ years.
B - Best Friend?
My husband and sisters.
C- Cake or Pie?
I’m a pie girl – especially cherry pie.
D - Drink Of Choice?
Iced Tea
E - Essential Item You Use Everyday?
Hmmmm… a hair brush.
F - Favorite Color?
Green
G - Gummy Bears or Worms?
Gummy bears.
H - Hometown?

I - Indulgence?
Bubble baths.
J - January or February?
February – our son is due in February.
K - Kids & Their Names?
Devyn (2) and Hudson (in-utero)
L - Life Is Incomplete Without?
My relationship with God – Good one Mary, I’ll just ditto this.
M - Marriage Date?
May 31, 2002
N- Number Of Siblings?
3 wonderful, hard-headed, loving, stubborn, and vivacious sisters.
O - Oranges or Apples?
Oranges
P - Phobias/Fears?
Snakes, BIG time. Give me spiders and bugs any day!
Q - Favorite Quote?
This is fast becoming my favorite quote from the movie Shall We Dance.
“We need a witness to our lives; there are a billion people on the planet... I mean, what does any one life really mean? But in a marriage, you're promising to care about everything; the good things, the bad things, the terrible things, the mundane things... All of it, all of the time, every day, you're saying 'Your life will not go unnoticed because I will notice it. Your life will not go un-witnessed because I will be your witness'."
R - Reason to Smile?
Whenever I feel life moving inside of me. Amazing!!!
S - Season?
Fall
T - Tag Three People?
Katherine, Amy, and Wendy
U - Unknown Fact about Me?
I am addicted to the salad at the Olive Garden. Frighteningly addicted!
V - Vegetable you don't like?
I will NOT eat beets, hate them!
W - Worst Habit?
Biting my nails and my lips.
X - X-rays You've Had?
Do MRIs or ultrasounds count? I had MRIs done in high school and several ultrasounds for two pregnancies.
Y - Your Favorite Food?
Mexican or Italian.
Z - Zodiac Sign?
While Mom would kill me for saying this, I am a classic Virgo. My poor, poor husband!

Nodding Off

Sunday, November 26, 2006 9 Comments A+ a-



Jon had placed Devyn in her booster seat while we prepared oatmeal for her; something she likes to eat before going to bed. As you can see, she was utterly exhausted and we just couldn't resisting pulling out the camera. The entertainment value was priceless!!

1000 Gifts - Week 3

Thursday, November 23, 2006 4 Comments A+ a-

Reasons 60 - 80 that I am so blessed!


Psalms 100
Shout for joy to the LORD, all the earth.

Worship the LORD with gladness;
come before him with joyful songs.

Know that the LORD is God.
It is he who made us, and we are his;
we are his people, the sheep of his pasture.

Enter his gates with thanksgiving
and his courts with praise;
give thanks to him and praise his name.

For the LORD is good and his love endures forever;
his faithfulness continues through all generations.

4-Wheeling, Baby!!

Tuesday, November 21, 2006 3 Comments A+ a-



Devyn Paige is one of the most adventerous little girls I've ever met, and I'm not saying that just because I'm her mother. Here is proof that she adores adventure and is willing to try anything; listen to her laugh! I pray that these qualities stay with her throughout life!!

Birthday Fun

Tuesday, November 21, 2006 4 Comments A+ a-

The balloons were a huge success; she played with them all morning long!
The birthday girl, in all her glory. (I think she's a little tired here.)The cake and party hats for the guests.The birthday cake for Devyn Paige; Minnie, Mickey, and Goofy were a huge hit!Trying to play with the big kids; she gave it her best shot!She finally became an observer of the game, which lasted about 10 seconds before she was off and running to do something else! Uncle Josh and Devyn playing in the tube/slide-thing. Great photo!!
Devyn absolutely LOVED this ride, it simulated 4-wheeling and tossed her everywhere. Daddy loved that she giggled through the whole thing. (Video to follow soon!)
The best part of the whole night, helping Miss Devyn open her gifts. Family and friends were extremely generous and we're very thankful!!

Happy Birthday Munchkin!

Sunday, November 19, 2006 8 Comments A+ a-

My firstborn turns 2 years old today. I was talking to my aunt this past week about what a bittersweet feeling it is to see Devyn celebrate another year older. While I’m truly enjoying each moment with her, I can’t help but remember the baby days with fondness and a sense of longing.

Yes, I miss the nights of nursing, the special bond between Devyn and myself; where time stood still as we stared into eachother’s eyes, memorizing the features of each other’s faces. I miss cuddling her tiny body on my chest, letting her rhythmic breathing sink into my soul. I miss her tiny hand clutching my index finger. I miss being the center of her universe, where I was her only source of nourishment and entertainment, all rolled into one.

There have been very few moments in Devyn’s life that I have not enjoyed, loved, relished, or treasured being her mother. She has been one of the greatest gifts God has ever given me. I am completely humbled that God would not only give me one of His children to raise, but that He has faith that I was the perfect mom specifically for Devyn. She has taught me patience in ways I have never thought possible. I have learned the true meaning of unconditional love; I know that my heart will forever be hers. I’m finding joy in the smallest things; a new word, a discovered skill, a wet kiss, a stroke of a cheek, or a beautiful smile. The list goes on and on… Becoming Devyn’s mommy has been one of the most fulfilling experiences in my life!

So, Happy Birthday Munchkin! Happy Birthday to the child who has touched my heart in more ways than one, who has changed my life for the better, and who will always be my baby girl!!

1000 Gifts - Week 2

Friday, November 17, 2006 5 Comments A+ a-

And the list of blessings continues...

27. The smell of puppy breath.
28. A quiet evening with a glass of wine and good conversation.
29. Skiing, feeling as though you’re flying.
30. A heartfelt conversation with a good friend.
31. Mom’s homemade fettuccini alfredo.
32. A back massage from Jon.
33. Christmas cards from family and friends.
34. My dad’s eagerness to maintain a strong relationship with each of his girls.
35. A brief, but poignant, memory of my great-grandmother, Grammie.
36. Grammie’s pickles… yummy!
37. Bacon Salad
38. Jon’s laidback attitude.
39. The clutching of my face and puckered lips, as Devyn leans in for a kiss.
40. Comfort offered in the arms of my husband.
41. The smell of white cotton blossom emanating from my bubble bath.
42. A good discussion with couples from our bible study.
43. The blessings that are each one of my sisters; Christine, Allison, and Courtney.
44. Forgiveness that is offered when it is least deserved.
45. Christine’s gentle, loving spirit.
46. Listening to music and Devyn asking to “da-ance?”
47. The song “My Little Girl” sung by Tim McGraw (tears… every time!)
48. Listening to Devyn sing to her baby dolls.
49. Allison’s tiny features but strong will.
50. Watching the grin on my husband’s face when he catches the “big” fish.
51. Jon’s boyish grin, no matter the reason.
52. My Aunt Debbie’s wise counsel.
53. Courtney’s sassy attitude and big heart.
54. Escaping to the family cabin for a weekend alone.
55. 4-wheeling through the mountain roads.
56. Holiday meals with families; the food, the conversation, the warmth.
57. Having my mother in the delivery room when Devyn was born, such strength.
58. The joy in having two brothers, given to me through marriage.
59. A beautiful, crisp fall afternoon.

Sassy Little Girl

Wednesday, November 15, 2006 11 Comments A+ a-

Devyn still doesn’t turn 2 years old for a few more days but within the past week we’ve hit the “two” stage in full force. Some of the changes include the word “no” as the most used in her vocabulary; a flair for defying Mom and Dad’s wishes; and a surprisingly willful spirit. Our recent conversations look something like this:

“Devyn, it’s time to help me clean up your toys.”

“No.”

“Devyn, you cannot say no to Mommy. Come help me clean up your toys.”

“No.”

“Young lady, you’re heading for a time-out.”

To which one of three things happens, either she’ll cry, scream, and throw a tantrum while I’m dragging her over to the time-out corner; she’ll give a deep sigh and start helping me clean up the toys; or she’ll walk herself over to the time-out corner and sit down. *Sigh* I am in SO much trouble when she hits the teens years.

Of course, she’s also learned how to throw a wrench into the disciplining process. Yesterday afternoon Jon was asking her to throw away some of her trash and she was answering with the usual “no”. Jon was starting to get exasperated.

“Devyn, you have until the count of three to throw this away.”

“No.”

“One…”

And then in the tiniest, sweetest voice you’ve ever heard, she responds with, “Two…”

Jon and I both erupted into laughter because it was the cutest, funniest thing we’ve ever heard. Of course, all hope for any discipline after that has gone completely out the window.

Life with a sassy, two-year-old is going to be an adventure!!

Chaos Reigns

Monday, November 13, 2006 9 Comments A+ a-

There are so many things that I want to write about and expound on but I find that my time is rapidly shrinking. For instance I want to write about the following:

  • Devyn’s upcoming 2nd birthday; when did she turn into a little girl?!
  • Thanksgiving plans with the whole family; my parents are expecting between 32 and 40 people.
  • My 1000 Gifts list, I have so much for which to be thankful!
  • The fact that I entered the 3rd trimester on Sunday.
  • Some recent visits with wonderful friends.
  • Our plans for the future.
  • My struggles with controlling my anger; recent developments in a familial relationship.
But I am so busy right now, and I feel like I’m desperately trying to keep my head above water. I find myself trying to maintain some sense of balance at home. I don’t want to be that mother that is so focused on doing “stuff” that I forget to cherish the time with family and friends. What am I so stressed out about?

  • Preparing for Devyn’s 2nd birthday party; again, when did she grow up?!
  • Helping Mom plan menus and help cook for 32+ people for the Thanksgiving meal.
  • Planning a baby shower for a friend; coming up in 2 weeks!
  • Preparing to send out 75+ Christmas cards, complete with letters and photos.
  • Getting ready to be pre-approved for a home loan and signing the appropriate contract with the builder of the house we like AND can afford.
  • Preparing for the Christmas season; drawing names, buying gifts, Christmas carols, baking, all while trying to teach Devyn the REAL meaning of Christmas. Any suggestions on how to do that with a two-year-old?

(For those that don’t know, I do work outside the home; please no judgments. Those that know me, know that my heart’s desire is to be home with my children, and hopefully will be soon.)

  • Mastering additional, new duties at work.
  • Administering 4 Flu Shot clinics for 1400+ employees.
  • Finishing the completion of insurance forms for 1400+ employees.
  • Planning, marketing, and finishing details for a Blood Drive at work.
  • Planning, marketing, and finishing details for one-on-one consultations with our retirement representatives and 1400+ employees.

*Sigh* Life just got a little too crazy right now, which always seems to be the case around the holidays. From my heart to yours, I hope that everyone is able to maintain a sense of peace and balance during this busy time of year.

1000 Gifts - Week 1

Friday, November 10, 2006 4 Comments A+ a-


This has started circling the blogosphere within the past week or so, originating from the site of Christian Women Online. I don't normally participate in these weekly memes but I just can't help but think what a wonderful idea it is to stop during this crazy time of year and reflect on the number of gifts God has given me! I was hoping to get all 1000 gifts listed before January 1st, but then I did the calculations and I realized I'd have to do 125 every single week between now and then! I'm not trying to punish myself; I want to reflect on these gifts as God brings them to mind without worrying whether I have 125 for the week or not. So my lists will be posted as I go, without rhyme or reason.

1. That God's graces are new every morning.
2. The sound of little feet pitter-pattering across a wood floor.
3. Every time my husband leans over and whispers "page 111" in my ear.
4. An updated post from a beloved blogging friend.
5. The smell of my mother's homemade stew.
6. The innocence of children's laughter.
7. A passage from the bible that speaks directly to my heart.
8. The pressure on my back as my husband turns over in bed.
9. Watching the rolls and bumps move across my belly, proof that life is growing inside.
10. The feeling of my daughter's tiny arms around my neck.
11. A worship song that moves me to tears.
12. Lunch with my sister, a cherished weekly ritual.
13. Watching my daughter jump into the water at the pool without fear!
14. Time to write out my thoughts or post on my blog.
15. The smell of my daughter's freshly washed hair.
16. The sight of the mountains and the setting sun.
17. Arranging a coffee or lunch date with a much-missed friend.
18. The sight of the mountains after a fresh blanket of snow.
19. A friend's good news of a coming baby or new engagement.
20. Watching a friend persevere through a hard time and come out victorious in the end.
21. Feeling replenished and peaceful after a great worship service.
22. Knowing that my mom is constantly praying over my children, my husband, and me.
23. A date with my dad.
24. A shared-look with my husband, knowing instantly we're thinking the same thing.
25. The feeling of my daughter, limp with sleep, on my chest.
26. Watching my daughter raise her arms during worship in church.

Belly Pics - Take 3

Wednesday, November 08, 2006 11 Comments A+ a-

18 Weeks with Hudson
22 Weeks with Hudson

26 Weeks with Hudson

26 Weeks with Hudson - Jon was feeling artistic, can you tell?!

Tired and Weary

Wednesday, November 08, 2006 9 Comments A+ a-

I am badly in need of some encouragement, ladies, more than you know. I’m not willing or able to go into all the details but the bottom line is that I’m currently feeling discouraged and weary as a sister, daughter, and Christian. Some family stuff plays into it, nothing concerning my husband, daughter, or pregnancy, just some really hard stuff outside of them. And don’t get me started about some of the political stuff going on in this country. The bottom line is that I’m desperately looking for some verses that will offer peace, encouragement, or truth. Please share, I’d love to hear what verses get you through moments like these!

Weekend to Remember

Monday, November 06, 2006 11 Comments A+ a-

Jon and I walked into the hotel room on Friday night and felt such an overwhelming sense of freedom that we fell onto the bed laughing at our good fortune. About two months ago, we had signed up for Family Life’s “A Weekend to Remember” and we couldn’t believe that we were actually there!! We had attended this conference as an engaged couple and at that time, couldn’t participate in all of the sessions on marriage. With adding a second child to the family and realizing that we hadn’t spent a weekend apart from Devyn since she was born, we thought this would be a perfect time to reconnect as husband and wife, while learning and re-learning some valuable tools for our marriage and family. Needless to say, we’ve anxiously been waiting for this weekend!!

On Friday afternoon, we packed our bags, said our good-byes to Devyn, and headed out of town. As I said earlier, the feeling of freedom really overtook us and we felt like newlyweds again with no responsibilities or obligations. It was wonderful!! The sessions during the conference were great and we really enjoyed them; despite the fact that a lot of the subjects have been covered during our pre-marriage marital counseling, bible studies, etc. It’s always feels good to get a refresher course on how God designed marriage, His plan for husband and wife, and all the ways that Satan tries to break-up a Christian marriage. Good stuff to hear…

On Saturday night, the conference releases all the couples to what they call a “date night” where couples are encouraged to spend the evening alone and reviving the romance we originally found in dating. Jon made reservations in this beautiful lodge for dinner, where the food was delicious and the view was spectacular. Since the lodge was built on the side of a mountain, the view from every table in the room overlooked the small mountain town below. With the dark night and twinkling lights below, it was simply gorgeous! We had an incredible time reminiscing over our last nine years together, our hopes for our marriage and our life, our dreams for our children, and promising to get away more often.

It really was a “Weekend to Remember” and even though the conference itself was great; the best part of the whole weekend was just getting to spend time alone; that the greatest blessing from our weekend away.

Pregnancy Update

Friday, November 03, 2006 9 Comments A+ a-

It’s been quite a while since I’ve posted an update regarding this pregnancy and it’s probably time that I do so. I am going to be 26 weeks along on Sunday and I’ll try to post another belly picture sometime next week.

I went in for my 24-week appointment last week where I was weighed, measured, given the glucose test, and received a flu shot; all in all, not a really fun appointment. First the doctor had me come in an hour early to take the sugary-drink that they use in their glucose test. I hate this drink, really I do. My insides start getting jumpy and the baby starts moving like crazy; I am NOT a big fan. The good news is that I do not have gestational diabetes; however I am anemic so I’m popping iron supplements once a day now. I’m not worried about the anemia, I had it when I was pregnant with Devyn but I just don’t remember it occurring so early in the pregnancy.

I then went in for the actual appointment and they first took my weight. I cannot believe that I’ve gained 20 pounds already!!! It actually makes me a little sad; I gained a total of 30 pounds with Devyn and 20 of them were gained during the last eight weeks. I’m a little scared to see the end result with this pregnancy. =) I’m determined to take up jogging once this little one arrives, I have a feeling I’m going to have to work a bit harder to lose the pregnancy weight!

The rest of the appointment went pretty well; Hudson’s heartbeat is strong and his movements are very consistent. The only downside to the appointment is that despite gaining 20 pounds, Hudson is measuring about two weeks small. I’m not that worried about it; Devyn consistently measured two weeks small throughout the whole pregnancy and then didn’t come out until 10 days after her due date. If he is still measuring small at the next appointment my doctor wants to perform another ultrasound; see, there is a silver lining!! At the end of the appointment both Devyn and I got our flu shots for the season and Devyn handled her shot a lot better than I did; she didn’t flinch, cry, scream, or anything, whereas I had to hold tightly to Jon’s hand.

Overall, I am really feeling good. My energy is starting to return, I haven’t been sick in almost three weeks, and I’m treasuring every one of Hudson’s movements. He is far more active than Devyn was as a baby and I love this part of pregnancy. I love knowing that I have life growing inside me again; I love watching his movements from the outside and seeing the bumps and mounds roll across my belly; and I just love this special time between me and my son. I’m bonding with Hudson in ways only a mother can and I’m getting so anxious to meet this little man.

PS That is not my pregnant belly, just a beautiful photo I found.

Such an Honor

Thursday, November 02, 2006 4 Comments A+ a-

Knee-Deep in Munchkin Land is being highlighted as Blog of the Week over at Overwhelmed With Joy's site. It's such a surprise and I thank her for the honor. If you're interested, you can check it out here.

Halloween Fun

Wednesday, November 01, 2006 11 Comments A+ a-

We had a pretty uneventful Halloween holiday around this house yesterday. First, a look at our non-smiling, beautiful Kitty-Cat, Devyn Paige; for whatever reason, the moment the camera came out yesterday, she just refused to smile. We spent the afternoon going from place to place visiting loved ones and their jobs.
First was a stop at Aunt Christine’s job, where her auntie was dressed up as her favorite holiday, Christmas. Devyn made out like a bandit at this stop.

Secondly, we stopped at Daddy’s job to visit with him and all of the other hard workers.

And lastly was a visit at Nana’s job and the nursing home folks that reside there. Everyone just loved Devyn and couldn’t stop commenting on her beautiful curls.

We then headed home, hoping for a good nap before heading out to Trick-or-Treat with friends but much to my dismay, she refused to lie down. When 6:00 rolled around, we got a first-hand look at what a sugar-crash with no nap looks like… it was NOT pretty. When she refused to let me comb her hair or paint the whiskers on her face again, we decided to stay home where she finally konked out on the couch.
Next year we’ll forgo the afternoon visits and focus on a good nap instead. Lesson learned!