Saturday, July 29, 2006

Mission accomplished...

I'll post more about dinner some other time, but I did manage to get a picture taken of me and NS after dinner. There were others taken yesterday, but those were with other people's cameras, so I'll have to wait to see them. Apparently this picture-taking issue with NS is a hard thing for more than just me...it seems there are very few pictures of him actually facing the camera, so I don't feel so bad now about not having been able to get one when his family hasn't been very successful, either;>

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Meet the parents...

So, NS's parents, sister, and his sister's friend, arrived here a little after 7 on Thursday morning. I had not expected to meet any of these people until Friday as that is the day we planned to make a trip to D.C. Well, while I was in the shower Thursday morning, it seems that some plan was made for his family to meet him at my apartment (he was already there, it wasn't completely weird). I don't realize this until I get out of the shower and start getting ready for work by getting dressed. He was on the phone, taking Big Dog outside as I left my room to get the clothes out for the boys. When he opens the door again, he is followed by four people that I've never met before. I didn't realize that any of them would be coming to my apartment at all this weekend, let alone that morning, so it was not "company-ready" if you understand what I mean...I could have done a bit of picking up and cleared up the toys from the floor in the boys' bathroom and maybe swished some cleaner in the toilet, too, but alas, I had no time for such things and felt kind of freaked by the surprise visit. But, seeing as they'd been driving for over half a day straight and were not well-rested, they may not have been paying too much attention to anything and were probably mostly concerned about getting down the street for breakfast;> Anyway, he said they liked me and the boys, so I'll believe him.

Yesterday's trip to D.C. was quite fun, even though my legs and feet were rather achy this morning from all the walking. We didn't go to the one place I figured a tourist would want to go, which was the Smithsonian. Instead, we went to the Holocaust Memorial Museum and the landmarks, like the White House, the Lincoln Memorial, the Jefferson Memorial, and the Vietnam Veterans' Memorial, and last we took a trip out to the Arlington National Cemetery. The first place we stopped was the Holocaust Memorial Museum. We were all pretty hungry and somewhat irritable, so it wasn't as appreciated as it could and should have been. I know I could only give half my attention to anything I looked at because my tummy kept growling at me about how hungry it was. Then, we went walking for a while to find the place where we wanted to eat for lunch. I had a lot of ice-cold water and a yummy meatball and cheese calzoni;> Pregnancy hormones had me nearly crying at the cemetery, but we did sit to witness the changing of the guards ceremony, which was pretty cool. Those poor guys have to stand watch over the tomb of the unknowns in full wool uniforms, which cannot be very pleasant when it is close to 100 degrees outside and the air is suffocating with humidity. We finished the night with a late treat of appetizers and dessert at The Melting Pot;> Delicious once again.

All in all, his family seems very laid back and fun, and I was comfortable with them and felt like they were accepting of me.

The plan tonight is dinner at Ruth's Chris Steak House. As much as people rave about this place, I hope not to be disappointed like I was with Charley's in Orlando. It wasn't that the Charley's steak wasn't good, but it wasn't great to me...just not my flavor, too chargrilled-tasting. Perhaps since I don't have my expectations as high for this place because of the Charley's experience, I'll be wowed like everyone else I've talked to that's been there. I guess we'll just have to see.

On a side note, to those that think they could figure out baby's sex from the ultrasound pics in the previous post, I believe you may be seeing things that aren't there or making them into things that they're not. I've had a few ultrasounds (about 8 with the twins), and that baby was not sharing in the angles we saw or captured in pics. Won't have any confirmation until mid-September for that anyhow.

Monday, July 24, 2006

"It" is still an "it" for now...

Appointment today went well. I was right about how far along I was...guess I'm pretty in-tune with my body now;> The ultrasound dates me at just over 14.5 to nearly 15 weeks, and I had thought I was in the 14-15 week range. This gives me a due date of January 16th, but since it is very likely I'll be having a planned c-section again, chances are likely that baby will be delivered, at the latest, within a week of that and definitely not going past that...they really try to avoid having women planning c-sections go into labor, too many possibilities for complications that way. Kind of funny that my boys share a birthday with my stepdad, and this one will be very close to the birthdays of both my stepsister (1/18) and NS's sister (1/20). NS was pretty happy about the experience this morning and is pretty excited as is his mom. We didn't get to hear the heartbeat like I thought, but that should definitely happen at the next appointment and all the ones after that.

Here are the blurry ultrasound pics from this morning...

First is just a head and body side-view (actually they're all side-views)
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Next is what I call the "chicken-leg shot"
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And last is the cute little profile shot with a hand (it is much clearer in person)
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Sunday, July 23, 2006

A fabulous birthday weekend...

Thursday night went well, except M and J hated the Japanese steakhouse hibatchi chefs. They were both terrified of the fire, and M was shaking from his fear of not only the fire but the smoke as well. J eventually got over it, especially after he had his food in front of him. We finally realized that M was alright as long as he was far enough away from the tables (it wasn't just the fire and smoke at our table, it was all four of them). The food was good, not great like Kobe but still good. They were a bit busy, so when it came time to sing "Happy Birthday" for me, our waiter guilted the table across from us into joining him in singing since the other employees couldn't. For the first time ever, I was slightly embarrassed by the spectacle. I got gifts from my mom and stepdad after we leave: some cute maternity stuff and a beautiful pair of earrings that had some shells on them as well as some preggie pop drops for the times I feel not-so-good and in case I end up in labor this time around.

The evening ended with my gift from NS. It was the most perfect gift I could have wished for...an ultimate spa package. A 7-hour day including: Classic European Facial, Rejuvenating Eye Treatment, Deluxe Salt Glow, 1-hour Massage, Spa Manicure & Pedicure with the additional callus treatment, paraffin for the hand & feet & additional hand and foot massage time, and lunch. To make this wonderful gift absolutely perfect, he included personal babysitting service, which means he will take care of M and J while I spend a day getting completely pampered. That will give him a full 8-9 hours taking care of my boys; I'm pretty certain that even IFKAMH has never spent that much time alone with them. Needless to say, I was in very high spirits on Friday.

Now, Saturday. I find out that we have reservations for dinner at 9. He first tells me that they're at Cheeseburger in Paradise; not that I didn't enjoy the food there when we went after the pirate movie, but he didn't enjoy it all that much, and it definitely didn't strike me as a place that takes reservations, so I figured that was a joke. My mom and stepdad pick up the boys to go to the pet store around 4:30, and I head over to NS's place a few minutes later. This trip normally takes about 25 minutes with little traffic. I figured there might be some traffic but that I would still be at his place in 35-45 minutes...oh how wrong I was. The signs for traffic delays say 10-20 minutes. That would have been fine and would have been what I had been thinking in the first place, but that was so inaccurate. It took me 40 minutes to travel 3 miles...most people run faster than this. I barely make it to NS's place by 6 despite having left at 4:40, an hour and 20 minutes for a 25 minute drive.

By the time I get there, the option to go to a movie before dinner was out of the question because nothing we wanted to see started soon enough. We end up going to play a round of miniature golf. I love miniature golf; I am not good at it by any means, but I still find it to be very fun. We had a decent time, but the course wasn't very exciting. There was no theme. I did really well on a few holes, even get a hole in one once, but most of them were my usual ball rolling across and just beside the hole so that it takes about 6-8 strokes to make it in;>

This didn't kill quite enough time, so we stop at the Borders by the restaurant, which I was finally clued into, The Melting Pot (I have wanted to eat at this place for years). We look through some baby name books at the bookstore, even found one on what not to name a baby (actually very funny book...one of the names for a boy: Moon Unit). I found out what he likes for a girl name, and he now knows my choices for a girl name; his choice isn't vetoed, but I still think I like mine better, especially with his last name, but we'll see. I also have a boy name in mind because one of my co-workers scared me into believing that if I don't have a name for one of the genders but do have one for the other, it will undoubtedly be the one I don't have a name for.

Anyway, dinner was superb. We opted for the full 4-course meal, which was more food than either one of us was really able to eat, although we some how managed to finish it all. Everything tasted great, the atmosphere was so relaxing, and the table was so perfectly cozy, and therefore romantic.

On the drive back to his place, he manages to bring up a subject that I've been pondering about how and when to bring up with him...moving in together. He prepped me with the comment that how he was going to phrase it was probably not the best way but he didn't know how best to say it. I don't think there was really a good way for him to phrase it, which is frankly why I didn't think he would bother. He asked what I wanted him to do in terms of after the baby is born, involvement-wise, like whether or not I wanted him to move in with us. My response was if he wanted to do that, then I would definitely want him to. So, he is going to give his new roommate (new next month) time to find a replacement so he's not left paying rent and utilities by himself or moving someone else in too quickly, which was one of my concerns as well, and will then move in to my new apartment (new next month) with me and the boys before the baby is born. I confessed that I had wanted to bring the subject up, too, but hadn't yet figure out how or when to best bring it up, so I'm very happy to have this decided, especially since I like the idea so much.

The rest of the night was wonderful, too. M and J slept 'til after 8 this morning (that hasn't happened in ages) and have been great today, even taking a nap this afternoon. So, my weekend has been fabulous, and tomorrow morning, I get to see the baby and hear it's little heartbeat. Hope everyone else is doing well, too!!

Thursday, July 20, 2006

It's closer now...

I am officially closer to being 30 than 20 since my 26th birthday was 30 minutes ago;>

It's been a pretty good day so far. NS was the first to wish me happy birthday with a text message at ten minutes before 7 this morning. I got to work and my officemate had bought me two carnations (pink and yellow, which happen to match the colors of the daisies tattoed on my chest;>) and a balloon. Ladies I work with treated me to lunch at a really quaint bed and breakfast place...very yummy lunch with an even yummier dessert. Got a call from NS to wish me happy birthday as we left the B&B. Then, I got my happy birthday song message from GA Girl and finally got to call her back a couple hours later to get more well wishes;>

Tonight is dinner with mom, stepdad, NS, M, and J at a Japanese steakhouse...mmmmmm;> That's kind of funny because that is the same birthday dinner I had when I was pregnant with the boys 3 years ago.

NS is taking me out Saturday per my request since my mom called dibs on tonight before he asked what night I wanted to go out to celebrate;>

Guess that's about it for now.

Tuesday, July 18, 2006

I just love this stuff...

What Your Soul Really Looks Like

You are a wanderer. You constantly long for a new adventure, challenge, or even a completely different life.

You are a grounded person, but you also leave room for imagination and dreams. Your feet may be on the ground, but you're head is in the clouds.

You see yourself with pretty objective eyes. How you view yourself is almost exactly how other people view you.

Your near future is calm, relaxing, and pretty much what you want. And it's something you've been anticipating for a while now.

For you, love is all about caring and comfort. You couldn't fall in love with someone you didn't trust.


That first part about being a wanderer and somtimes longing for a different life doesn't seem to fit me...at least I don't think so. I guess I like experiencing new things, like adventures and challenges, but a different life, can't recall longing for that;>

The rest is pretty nice to read: that I see myself the same way others see me (most of the time, I'd say that is a good thing) and a calm and relaxing future that is pretty much what I want...what could be better;>

Definitely hit the bullseye about not being able to love without trust.

Shopping for maternity clothes...

This is for dr. jeeeol;>

I hate to tell you, but I don't have favorite maternity stores. I have been everywhere (and looked at many websites) that I can think of that carries maternity clothes this time around trying to create my maternity wardrobe. It hasn't been very easy. I don't know if I was less picky last time, or if the selections available were better, or if it was just that I didn't need much variety (previous company had more lenient dress code back then, meaning denim was acceptable all week long), but I have had a hard time finding things I like this time.

I've gotten a lot of things from JCPenny, Motherhood, and imaternity.com (meaning spent $150 or more with them). Next up would be Burlington (great tops there), Old Navy, Ross, Kohl's, and even Walmart. A lot of people love to mention Target for maternity clothes, but I've never had luck there...this time or last. I bought one top there this time, which was a polo shirt because I was looking for this type of shirt at the time.

It's also going to depend on the time of year you're shopping. A lot of the stuff I love right now that is out there is not suitable for work because it is tank top (thin strap) style.

I also got a dress from Mimi Maternity because it was cute and on a great sale. I really like the stuff they have as well as A Pea in the Pod, but they are not that great for prices.

Monday, July 17, 2006

This belly doesn't hide very well;>

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Pic taken tonight in one of my new Old Navy maternity tanks. I got one in white and one in black...they have a scribbly heart that has "filled with love" scribbled inside. I can't imagine how those words are gonna look a few months from now, but for now they are legibile and the tanks are mighty comfy;>

Thursday, July 13, 2006

So far, so good...

This pregnancy seems to be progressing well. I am pretty fortunate because once all the yucky first trimester symptoms start disappearing for me, I begin to feel baby movement rather quickly while most women have to wait to start feeling movements and go through an "I don't feel pregnant" stage. I felt movements rather early with M and J, and I'm glad they've started early this time, too, because it's really reassuring and makes it seem like everything is going well.

Only one and half more weeks until I have my next appointment. I'm still feeling a little gypped, but I'm still happy that NS will get to be there with me. He's being so great...the way I thought IFKAMH should have been when I was pregnant with the boys. He kisses and caresses and cuddles my belly, which is so incredibly sweet and comforting. For some reason, I usually felt like IFKAMH resented my being pregnant; you know what they say, fatherhood brings out the best in some guys and the worst in others...glad I've gotten one of the former ones now;>

Sunday, July 09, 2006

Now I feel bad...

Apparently NS decided not to see the movie with his friends last night afterall. I guess I wasn't very persuasive in making it seem okay, even though it really would have been okay with me. I am not the kind of person to be hurt by someone seeing a movie without me...provided they don't decline to see it with me as well when they know I wanted to see it. Since he was more than willing to see it again with me, I was actually more than fine with his going last night, but I guess I sounded pretty hurt last night when he talked to me, so he didn't go. I feel really bad about it now because I know that I was just tired and cranky and really had no idea how whatever I was saying was sounding...if that makes sense.

Anyway, we did go to see the movie today, and I loved it, of course...definitely got me eagerly anticipating the next one;>

Hope everyone out there had a wonderful weekend!

Saturday, July 08, 2006

I'm feeling like a lucky lady...

NS has definitely been living up to his "Navy Sweetie" name;>

Last night, we went out for dinner with the boys and then back to my apartment. While I got the boys bathed and ready for bed, he did all the cleaning that I don't ever get to anymore because I'm just too tired after the boys get to bed during the week. He picked up all the toys that were on the floor in their room as well as the miscellaneous stuff all over the rest of the place. He then vacuumed the carpet and even steam-cleaned the living room and its high-traffic areas. After all that, he still put in a mighty effort to scrub the marker off the wall next to the kitchen. A lot of it came off, but there is still some there. I really don't think it's coming off; it's gonna have to be repainted;> We then relaxed on the couch watching I, Robot, and he snuggled his head against my tummy and eventually drifted off to sleep.

This morning he had me lay on the couch and rest since the boys had gotten up at 6 this morning, and I had gotten up to keep them out of trouble around 6:45. Before he left, he even told the boys to let me have a relaxing day;>

I went to my grandparents' house with the boys and my mom and stepdad this afternoon, so the boys could go swimming, and then we stayed through dinner. As I get home, he calls. He's hanging out with some friends, and they're going to go see the Pirate movie tonight at 10:30 or so. I, being extremely exhausted, kind of start whining about wanting to see it. After unsuccessfully trying to convince me that I can come with them, he assures me that he will still see it with me, tomorrow if I want. That is fine with me; I know I'm just sort of over-exaggerating since I'm deliriously tired, but I guess he didn't get that from me. He sends me a text message a few minutes later apologizing because he didn't know it would matter so much and that he figured he would see it with me no matter what. I had to let him know that it really is fine and that he shouldn't really take me too seriously when I'm that tired. Poor guy...probably thought I was upset and hurt when I'm really just so tired that I don't really know what I'm saying;>

Oh, and isn't he sweet...he even bought himself a baby book;>

Wednesday, July 05, 2006

Precisely why my life mantra is "everything happens for a reason"...

Last night NS came over to talk about our situation. After talking with people (a lot of people apparently, including his parents) and giving the idea some thought, he has decided that he feels this is a good thing and wants to be here for me and the baby.

Needless to say, I was very happy to hear this. Afterall, who wants to go through pregnancy and raising children alone if they don't have to?

But, my "everything happens for a reason" thing comes from the fact that he will be coming with me to my dr. appointment on the 24th...and he seemed genuinely happy when I invited him. He didn't hesitate when I said he could come to respond with: "Ok. I will." then making sure what the date was so that he could arrange it at work. So, now we will get to hear and see the baby for the first time together, which is always ideal. Guess that's why nothing happened at the appointment on Monday;>

Monday, July 03, 2006

What a major disappointment...

Well, the appointment I had today really told me nothing I didn't already know other than what I weigh (which I had already guessed about and was right) and my blood pressure.

I was expecting to get the internal exam, basically like the one women get every year with the addition of a check for the size of my uterus, and maybe even an ultrasound to figure out how long I've been pregnant since I am very uncertain about that.

Not at all. I won't get those things done for another 3 weeks!

They had me pee in a cup, which surprise, suprise had a positive pregnancy result, did the weight and blood pressure (both good), and then had me sit in the office and answer medical history questions.

I'm starting to regret having changed my original appointment. That was scheduled as a normal check-up on the 12th, in which I would have at least gotten the exam, and now I have to wait until the 24th. Pretty frustrating to be starting to show and having to tell people the news of your pregnancy and not be able to answer those simple questions of "how far along?" or "when are you due?".

I called my mom to tell her the news this afternoon. I had chickened out on Saturday because I figured I could just wait a couple days and probably be able to give her more information...apparently that plan did not work. She wasn't thrilled (I knew this), but I knew she would be supportive and understanding as she always has been; she's a wonderful mother. As it sinks in more, I'm sure she'll even be excited since she got a little bit excited already...especially thinking that I might even get a girl this time;>

Sunday, July 02, 2006

Guess I should be a little more cautious about saying "not much going on";>

A couple days after I posted this, a lot started going on in my life.

And now I've learned that you just can't escape fate.

It started on Monday with the ponderance of having missed my second consecutive period. Now, missing May's didn't really phase me because the pill that I've been on since the boys were about six months old (other than a hiatus from June last year through January of this year) has done this to me regularly. At least every few months, I skip a period, but I've never missed more than one period, so I kind of started to wonder. Since I didn't really think I'd had any obvious symptoms of pregnancy, I didn't think too much of it, but seeing as I had a spare home-pregnancy-test in my bathroom, I figured why not just make sure and put any wondering thoughts to rest. This is what I saw that morning...

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BUT the test could have been expired. The way the expiration date was stamped, it either expired April 7, 2005, or will expire April 5, 2007. So, the first thing I did after getting to work that day was research what could cause a false-positive on those tests, and sure enough, an expired test was on the short list of what can cause that rare occurance. Not having a period in a couple months was still a fact, though, so I decided to go buy an unexpired pack at lunch and retest.

I went into the bathroom at work after I got back from lunch and peed on the stick as instructed. I paced in the handicap stall, trying not to watch during the 3-minute waiting time as the test results appeared...

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So, I started to come to terms with the fact that I am indeed pregnant. I look back to my calendar and start to wonder if I even had a period in April. I remember thinking about it coming because it should have arrived around the same day that month as my second laser hair removal treatment. When I looked at my schedule for the days following that one, I honestly couldn't recall having my period. Now, I'm worried that I've missed three consecutive periods...all the while continuing to take birth control pills.

Everything I was able to find about the effects of birth control pills on a pregnancy stated that there should not be any negative ones, but I still worry.

Since I bought the two-pack of the home-pregnancy-test, I went ahead and took the last one Tuesday morning, I guess still trying to help the reality of this sudden life change sink in. Yep, still very much so positive (that is the one that is actually pictured above).

I think about things that are symptoms of pregnancy and realize that I have had a quite a few, but I had attributed them to other conditions.
* Being so tired I couldn't keep my eyes open by the end of my work day was due to the artic temperature of my office; magically, after I wasn't so cold, I wasn't so tired...why would I think anything different?
* Vomiting in the morning (or anytime really) was so obviously due to the stomach bug my boys had and then due to the gross amounts of mucus I coughed up one day while trying to get over my cold...and the other nausea spells I figured where from those illnesses as well.
* Mild breast tenderness was right at the start of the week I should have gotten my period, so why wouldn't I have just considered it to be normal PMS...except that the period never started.

Now I have also started to have severe sensitivity to smells. A lot of odors make me queasy, even when they would normally have probably smelled very yummy...like lasagna or hamburgers or any other variety of foods cooking and producing wafting aromas. And, I'm also incredibly weepy. I wasn't this bad with the boys, but I cry over the smallest things now, mostly news stories and emails, like the "friends" one I sent to GA Girl...had me streaming with tears at my desk last week;>

It also seems as though my body has decided that since I know I'm pregnant now, it doesn't have to hide that fact anymore. My tummy just started to let itself loose Monday night and has gotten me a few curious glances from co-workers (or maybe I'm just super paranoid because I didn't want to tell anyone at least until I'd had a chance to tell NS, if not until after I'd gone to the doctor). The belly grows throughout the day so that at night I look to be about 5, maybe even 6 months pregnant. I bought a cute maternity swimsuit from Old Navy on Friday night and took a picture when I tried it on at home...

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Anyone that wouldn't at least think that I'm pregnant while looking like that would have to be crazy, in my opinion;>

So, now we might be a bit more clear as to why I was so frustrated with the Navy all week for working my NS so much that I couldn't deliver this news. I had my nerve built up on Monday, but every day that I thought it would happen, something would come up and it didn't. Apparently he had begun to think I was depressed from my responses to him on the phone and in text messages that we were exchanging because I kept questioning when I would get to see him. He finally made it over to my place today and now knows the situation. He took it as well as I was expecting, possibly a little better since he did state a couple times that he just wasn't sure whether to take it as good or bad news...I had sort of assumed he would see it as bad news right off the bat, so the idea that he isn't certain of that is a bit of a good thing, I think. He said he wasn't sure how to act or what to say; I tried to put him at ease in that I didn't know either and that I was just expecting him to be in shock for a while. He thought I had made a good prediction about that;>

I will post again after my appointment tomorrow. I am praying for good news and to find out how far along I am since I have no clue really but think at least 2 if not 3 months.