Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Baby Update

Today was the second time I went to my new Ob's office. I go weekly now and I'll have an exam every week. I'm 36 weeks on Friday.

I met another doctor today. He was very nice and made me pretty comfortable despite being male (I prefer female ob/gyns). He said head is down and baby is face down. He also said it has started to drop and that it is almost perfectly centered. He pretty much said if they could place the baby in a perfect position it is about 1/4 inch to the right of that but that is well within margin of error. He seemed pleased.

Today I got the Strep B test but that was the extent of my exam. I assumed the doctor would check to see if I started dilating. I told him I've been having a lot of contractions, but nothing consistent or too close. When he learned it was my fourth and we talked about my history he said he didn't want to check and see if I was dilating. Essentially he said that with the first baby the cervix is textbook and it's very easy to do an exam and determine how much your dilating. However, with each additional baby he said the cervix changes and it gets harder to get an accurate check on the cervix without being a little more invasive. He said the result of his exam could be enough to encourage the onset of labor and since the only thing it would do is determine if I've begun dilating but doesn't really change anything at this point he would prefer to wait. He essentially asked if I was prepared to go into labor tonight because it could increase the odds. I essentially said, no! So next week, when I'm a few days shy of 37 weeks I'll probably risk the exam so we can check on the progress.

I've been induced with all three girls. We're still debating the option. If I go that route it would be around March 20. There are a lot of pros and a few cons. We'll wait to see what we learn next week and maybe pray in the meantime that it happens a convenient time. Is that praying for a miracle?

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

The Bathroom Saga

Back around MLK day I posted about remodeling the girl's bathroom. Who knew at the time that the project would take almost as long as our kitchen remodel! The primary reason for the slow progress is the fact that Brad has worked on it from about 9pm-midnight most days by himself...that is slow going progress. Plus the tiling took a long's not something he could do well at night since he needed to use the loud tile saw and cut outside in the freezing cold. That means he had to hold off and save most of the tiling for Saturday or Sunday when he could work outside and have enough time to mix mortar.

So that is the background that gets us to this past weekend...a weekend that we were going to make a lot of visible progress as we were ready to install the vanities and counter tops and some of the hardware. As we pushed the 48inch vanity into the alcove we discovered it wasn't a true was somewhere like 47.5inches. They don't make 47.5 inches. We assume the 22 year old wall had shifted over time...regardless we had a dilemma. Since the difference was fairly small we decided that cutting 1/2 inch sheet rock would allow us to slide it into place. This solution worked. However...we didn't consider that when we replaced the sheet rock it would prevent the drawers from being able to open since the style of the vanity had drawers that went right to the edge of the face of the cabinet. So...problem wasn't solved. And even if the drywall wasn't an issue we also realized that the drawers on the left would hit the molding around the door after you opened the drawer about 6 inches. So basically the vanity wasn't going to work. Off to Home Depot and Lowe's.

The only criteria we started to look for was a 48 inch vanity that had drawers that were inset a few inches so we could put the vanity in place and then add the drywall in front of it and essentially it would be built in. There was actually only one vanity that fit that criteria. It's a white vanity so the entire look of the bathroom is changing since the initial vanity was espresso color.
So this is the new vanity with our counter tops...which were 49inches to hang over the edge of a 48inch vanity. This meant cutting into the drywall on both sides of the wall and then notching into the studs. Thankfully the splash guard pieces hide most of the drywall deconstruction so we don't have to repair it...but there is still drywall to replace, tape, mud and paint in front of the vanity.
The new cabinets came with stainless hardware so we bought antiqued bronzed to go with the faucets and lights. The white has grown on me...the tile is a dark tan as well as the walls so the white looks nice since we put in a white tub, toilet and sink basins.
Here is a glimpse of Brad's tile project in the shower. He still has to grout which will fill in any cracks you see. I complicated life and added a lot of hours to his project by suggesting we do a design on the back wall and also cut in a recessed area for shampoo and soap. He has done a great job and is so sick of the project. I know he is anxious to get it am I since we really aren't doing anything to get ready for the baby until we wrap up this project. We're having a birthday party at the house for Brooke on March 7...he promised we'll have everything done and cleaned up by then. That will be my last big cleaning of the house and then we'll be sitting around waiting for the baby to arrive!
Hopefully I'll have some finished product pictures to post in another week.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Go Girl

This isn't an SNL skit. It's serious.

I honestly admit that I could see having this with me during a triathlon...however I would still have the issue of having to somehow discretely get my pants down or situated in a manner that would allow me to discreetly use the bathroom. If you do marathons or triathlons you know that the urge to pee doesn't always happen when you're around the designated out-houses...and even if it does I would rather pee 20 feet off the course in the woods then an out house.

Other then that...I think their ideas for usage are humorous. They repeatedly talk about the idea of standing up while peeing being completely foreign to women, unless you're European (which you will understand that, too if you've ever been to Europe and peed in a "toilet" that is essentially a shower drain). Am I the only one that solves the dirty bathroom issue by simply squatting? Technically it's not the kind of standing they are suggesting, but it solves the problem. And, it's a good 20 second workout for your calves and quads.

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Kissing Baby "Max"

Brooke has named the baby "Max"...after Max and Ruby. She tells everyone about baby "Max" and I think is going to be very confused once the baby is born and we don't refer to it as "Max".
It doesn't help that our entire family also occasionally refers to the baby as "Max".

A favorite past time is giving the baby zerberts...I decided to capture the moment this morning, including my huge, dry, pasty white belly!

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Valentine's Party

Our friends invited us over tonight for a family Valentine's Party. We volunteered to bring dessert and we spent some time this afternoon decorating cupcakes. Here is the results of our hard but fun work!
There are about 8 other cupcakes that the girls decorated...we saved those for home since there was a lot of licking of spoons and knives...although we're friends with this family I thought they would prefer if we didn't share our germs.
We also dipped some strawberries for dessert. I feel like whenever I do this it gets a big reaction but it is the fastest and easiest thing to do for dessert so I'm always surprised at the response! Baby must like the strawberries a lot because I ate several...but it's fruit, right?!
It was a girl's only theme as there were 6 little girls...half of them being ours!

Valentine's Date

Daddy celebrated Valentine's with his three favorite girls. They all dressed up, asked me to curl their hair, and picked out some "fancy" jewelery from their toy box.
I can dress them up but I can't keep them from being silly!
Daddy rang the bell and when he got home and greeted the girls with boxes of chocolate. They were pretty doesn't take much when you're 7, 5 and 2.
There is a small part of me that is jealous to be girl #4 (although Daddy denies this is my rank order), I'm so thankful that the girls have such an amazing Daddy to look up to and learn from and that he is so fond of his girls.
Even though Mommy wasn't invited on this date to Red Robin, my feelings weren't hurt...I got to go out to dinner with some girlfriends and then a movie!

Friday, February 13, 2009

So Proud, and Relieved!

Baileigh had a contest at school to design a box for her Valentine's Party. They were supposed to use materials around their house and be as creative as possible. I decided to expose her to the fine art of paper mache so we covered a heart balloon, cut a slit for the cards, and then painted it and decorated it.
She grew very hopeful and optimistic that her box was going to win. We spent the entire week trying to play down the contest so she wouldn't be disappointed if she lost. The night before the party she asked God in her bedtime prayers that she if she didn't win she hoped she wouldn't be sad or upset and if she did win she wanted to be a good sport and not brag.
The day of her party I thought about her constantly and wondered how the judging went. She came out of school and started running when she saw me. I couldn't tell in the distance if she was crying or happy. As she got closer I heard "I WON! I WON! I WON!" I seriously started tearing up with excitement and relief. It was one of those moments where it hit me just how much her victories and failures in life are going to feel like my victories and failures. That excites me and terrifies me at the same time!

Her Buddy

Our friend's dog had to be put down earlier this week. It has led to a lot of discussion around our house about the health and future of our dogs. Ranger (in picture) is a ten year old yellow lab. Jonah, who is more camera shy, is a nine year old Golden Retriever. We've had them both since our first year of marriage. They are both in good health but getting older.

Yesterday was fairly turbulent around our house for a few hours. Both Mckenna and Brooke were tired and having long, slow meltdowns. Thankfully Baileigh was in good spirits and busy reading a book. I was upstairs with my two emotionally unstable children who were crying, when I thought I heard more crying. It was Baileigh downstairs. Apparently she was playing with Ranger and started thinking about him dieing and it led to a meltdown of her own.

We had a long talk and then decided to take some pictures with her buddy that I thought I would share. You can see her red eyes from crying in this photo.
A photo shoot with Ranger seemed to stop everyone's crying...thankfully!
It's a miracle...a fairly good shot of all three girls and a dog almost looking at the camera!
Mckenna loves to sit and lay on Ranger. He is such a good sport...he never runs off and deals with all their abuse (aka love).

Both are dogs have been wonderful additions to our family. Ranger is getting a little cranky in his old age and Jonah seems to get stinkier in his old age! Regardless, they are both well loved and we're enjoying each and every day and not taking them for granted.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

The Big Day!

On Monday Mckenna finally had her long awaited playdate at our house with her buddy, Seth. She and Seth hit it off the first day of pre-k and all we hear about is "Seth this" and "Seth that". On top of it, the boy has a ton of allergies so I also hear "Seth can't eat that" or "when Seth comes over we can't have that" etc. I promised her a playdate before the baby was born so I finally checked that box today.

Mckenna wanted to make Valentine cookies, but w/ the allergies I opted for some crafty type of stuff instead. We hit the $1 bin at Michaels and picked up a few things. Entertaining boys is new territory in our house so I wasn't sure what would be popular. "Flarp, Noise Putty" was a hit...I assumed since it made gassy noises when you folded it that it would provide some giggles.
We also monitored the growth of our sponge safari animals throughout the day. We were 50/50 on success...some of them grew to full size and some of the other capsules were duds.

We took a break from being crafty to eat lunch. Seth's mom packed his lunch so we didn't have to worry about giving him anything he wasn't supposed to have...although nurse Mckenna seemed proficient in knowing all his dietary needs and I don't think she would have allowed me to give him anything with milk or wheat in least to her knowledge!

Brooke was a little jealous that she wasn't having her picture taken so this photo was to appease her complaints.

So once our "organized" time was done the kids wandered downstairs to play...this is what I found. Seth has an older sister and apparently plays dress up with her a lot.

When his mom picked him up he was still dressed like this. Seth's dad is a police officer...his mom said that he would be so proud!

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Not Much

I've really been in a blogging slump lately. I just haven't been in the mood or felt like I've had much to say. Plus we've changed our photo program and I'm struggling to upload photos right now so it makes posting with pictures a pain.

Today I'm home with Brooke who is sick again. It seems like she throws up several times in a 3-4 hour period and then nothing for 24 hours and then the cycle repeats itself. This has been going on since Friday night. She also has an occasional low fever around 100. Today she is quite adorable and quite pathetic. She wants me to sit next to her on the couch which gives me a lot of computer time while she watches favorites like Olivia and Max and Ruby.

Since I've been home with her a lot lately it has given me some time to make some phone calls and pursue changing OB/Gyns. Long story that I'll post more about soon but I think tomorrow I'm changing our insurance and then switching from a military hospital to a private hospital. Since I'm 33 weeks I actually had one practice tell me they wouldn't take me because their schedule was full. Thankfully it was my second choice practice and my first choice practice said they would take me but couldn't guarantee which doctor I would see.

Aside from that we're still working on the girl's bathroom. Brad has a lot on his plate and it's been hard to make fast progress when he only has two hours a night and a lot of the work keeping us from moving forward quickly involves cutting tile with a wet saw in the driveway in cold temperatures at 9:00pm. It's not very safe and doesn't make us too popular with the neighbors. Plus it's hard to mix a small batch of mortar so it means waiting on the tiles until the weekend and trying to move ahead with other things like sanding the walls and painting...which began last night. I'm not much help with this project since I'm the size of a whale and lacking energy by 9pm...

So that is my rambling for today. You probably would have preferred that I just didn't post anything. This is what happenes when I have an entire day on the couch...that and I spend too much time on Facebook! My little sick one is on her second nap of the day...that alone proves she is ill!!!! Mckenna is home from pre-k thanks to a nice neighbor who she was able to carpool with today. I'm getting to be pretty good friends with the carpool mom and our girls really like each other. So of course, she told me today that they are moving in May to Georgia. They are army. Story of my life...well a least, story of this assignment thus far!

Saturday, February 07, 2009

A Walk in the Park

I believe today set a record temp...something like 68! It was gorgeous. Brad spent the day trying to make some progress on the girl's bathroom...but it was so pretty we had to take a break and wander around the lake. This means I bring my camera and take a few pictures just for the heck of it...

TU in DC

On Thursday night I took the metro into the city and met up with Brad. We headed over to the Rayburn building across from the Capitol to attend a Taylor University alumni event. The school's president was in town for the National Prayer Breakfast which had occurred earlier that morning.
For a school of approximately 2,000 in Indiana, it was impressive to have about 75 people in the DC area that attended the gathering. It was an incredibly cold night, but it was still fun to do something out of the norm and enjoy a little time with Brad without the kids (I think we've finally found a sitter!). It was also nice to talk a walk down memory lane and see some familiar faces from my collegiate past and relive those awesome four years of my life.

Wednesday, February 04, 2009

Women's Retreat

Just a quick recap from my women's retreat and some pictures. It was an amazing weekend...physically exhausting but spiritually a time of rest and renewal.
The conference center is on the Chesapeake Bay and while it was cold...there were beautiful sunsets!
The girls...this is our group of 8 from my former mini church that attended last year. They are also my NYC girls!
We had a few hours of free time on Saturday afternoon so we wandered around the small shopping town of North East, Maryland. This cow in drag was just a cry for a photo and I knew my friend Melissa would be a good sport!
Some of the girls from my table. We were the four "young gals" and then we had four "more mature" ladies at our table. That wasn't my description but rather the observation from one of our wiser table members...we were a unique group but a perfect mixture and I really appreciated our table time and our discussions!
Our "last supper" before I headed back to VA and the rest of the group went back to NJ.
It's hard to believe that the next time I see this group it will be with a newborn...or older! My tummy got a lot of rubbing over the weekend. I discovered that in a group 0f 250 women there are a lot of ladies who feel at liberty to touch a pregnant tummy. I used to find this annoying...but considering I'm nearing the home stretch of my final pregnancy I started to kind of relish the moment.