Waiting, waiting, celebrating…

Here we are, still awaiting the arrival of our baby boy! I had a great birthday though, which really helped to distract me a bit during this long wait. We got to celebrate two birthdays this weekend while waiting for another one…

My birthday weekend kicked off on Friday night. I went out to dinner with my best friend, Taylor, and her mother AKA Mama G., the woman who is my second mother. They treated me to dinner and a delicious molten chocolate lava cake. Afterward, we went back to Mama G.’s house where we met up with my other BFF, Katie. It had been a LONG time since us girls hung out over there since we all have our own places now and typically hang out there instead. It was just like old days, when we spent every weekend and free night over there in middle and high school. They recently had their kitchen remodeled, and Mr. G. commented that when he saw the three of us together in the kitchen again, he was expecting to see their old kitchen. We had a really nice time, catching up and playing Taboo (Katie and I crushed it, by the way). Katie also brought a delicious pie and hot chocolate. Mmmm. It’s okay to have two desserts when it’s your birthday, right?! What a GREAT night that I will always remember fondly. It’s the little things in life and I am so grateful for these amazing friends of mine.

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Saturday was the big day, my 26th birthday, which started with some relaxing at home. Jerry went out and got me McDonald’s for breakfast and also brought me home some thoughtful gifts; he picked out two cute shirts for post-pregnancy and an owl scented wax warmer. Seeing as I haven’t been able to buy any normal clothes in nine months, it was nice to receive some new clothes. We also love wax warmers in this house… we’re big fans and this one’s my third.

Earlier in the week, I had asked Jerry to make me my absolute favorite for lunch… alfredo! It was his first time ever making it, and as always, he nailed it. My husband is an amazing cook and this seriously tasted like the alfredo from one of  the best Italian restaurants in the area.

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Lunch was followed by the festive birthday-pregnancy-nap. Ahhh. Naps are my favorite these days. Later, we went to dinner with my parents, brother, sister-in-law, and nephew. We went out for barbecue followed by a cookie cake at home. Lots of good eats… dang. We had a combined celebration for my birthday and Jerry’s 28th which is coming up on Saturday, a week from mine. We typically do a combined celebration anyway but had even bigger reason to this year with us not knowing if we’ll be in the hospital or not for Jerry’s birthday. My parents were kind enough to gift me with cash since there will be a lot of immediate expenses after the baby is born. My brother and sister-in-law put together a really nice basket of snacks for the hospital. Jerry is ready to dig in, but I’m holding off and packing the basket in the car when we leave!

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Even though I had a really great time celebrating, at the moment, the baby is all that’s on our mind. I’ve been on the lookout for labor signs for weeks now, and we’re all getting more and more anxious as the days go by! Tomorrow is his due date – January 20th – but I am now almost certain he won’t be here just yet. I did experience a lot of discomfort and pain this weekend, and as my doctor so kindly said, pain is a good thing at this point… but still nothin’! I’ve been on such high alert that I think I just need to accept that he will come on his own terms and in his own time. I know that due dates really don’t mean a heck of a lot, and that babies can be up to two weeks late. For now, I resolve to chill out, relax, rest, and enjoy our last days together just the two of us. The moments of quiet, peace, and relaxation will be all but gone as soon as he arrives so I’m trying to savor it, but we sure are dying to hold him in our arms! There is nothing we want more than to finally see his little face.

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^^My birthday baby bump // Jerry giving the belly kisses and telling Caleb to come out! You will never see a bare belly picture ever again on this here blog, but this moment was just too sweet!

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Five on Friday (5)

Happy Friday!

ONE. Tomorrow is my 26th birthday! I’ve been wondering if I would become a mom at 25 or 26, and it looks like it will be 26! Jerry’s birthday is exactly one week after mine and he’ll be turning 28. We’re celebrating both of ours tomorrow with the family since we may or not be in the hospital for Jerry’s birthday. We’re going to dinner with my parents and brother’s family, then having a cookie cake because that’s how Jerry and I celebrate. Whatever. It’s fine. We had one for our birthday last year, and had one for our wedding rehearsal too. We’re all about the cookie cakes. I asked Jerry to make me my favorite for lunch… alfredo! Birthdays are cool and all, but it’s hard to get excited about anything when you’re waiting for a baby. I did get some free email coupons for my birthday though! I went and got a free Moe’s entree earlier this week. Burrito bowls… mmm.

Untitled^^ Last year’s birthday celebration. Mmmm. That cake was GOOD.

TWO.  I received a really sweet package in the mail this week from my blogging friend, Darlene, from Lost in Literature. She was so thoughtful and sent me this really beautiful book for Caleb, as well as an awesome bookish mug that she had made for her blog. I was so touched! I have made some really wonderful blogging friends. Thank you, Darlene – your thoughtfulness means A TON to me! I will cherish both gifts, and Caleb will love the book… the illustrations are stunning!

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THREE. My mom and I have been walking the mall this week to try and encourage Caleb to come out. While we were there last night, I couldn’t pass up this adorable frame from Kirkland’s which was on clearance for $5.97. Our budget is really tight right now since I’m out on maternity leave (since Wednesday!), but I couldn’t resist. Burlap is one of my favorite things to decorate with since my whole house is primitive and country. The library I work for also has an amazing friends group who hold annual book sales to raise money. Every January, they hold a huge one at the mall that always falls during my birthday week so we of course stopped and got a nice stash of cheap books. I go every year for my birthday!

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FOUR. I got a much needed haircut on Tuesday. I wanted to look nice in all of our hospital pictures so my mom was kind enough to treat me to a haircut. After that, we stopped and got me a fake, cheap wedding ring since my fingers bloated to small sausages a couple of weeks ago and I had to temporarily stop wearing my rings.

IMG_20150113_194852^^ New hair!

FIVE. Now that I’m out on maternity leave, I’ve been catching up on some shows on the DVR. This week, I’ve been watching some of the TLC shows… “My 600 Pound Life,” and the season premiere of “My Big Fat Fabulous Life.” I’ve really enjoyed both of them! I love weight loss shows since I’ve been through the whole weight loss thing myself, AND I’m a sucker for interesting reality TV… or any reality TV, really. Anyone else watching either of these shows?

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Waiting for Caleb: Maternity Pictures

Since we are still waiting for Caleb, “Waiting for Caleb Week” is continuing with another new post today. I think we will be waiting for Caleb for a little while longer, according to the doctor at my Tuesday appointment. Ah, well. He’ll come when he’s ready!

Anyway, below are our maternity pictures. My dad’s a photographer so I asked him to take a few shots for us. We really didn’t take many pictures because I am feeling really self-conscious about how I look right now, yet I knew I would regret it if we didn’t do any at all. Not to mention, the night we did them I was super tired and not feeling it at all. I also had a ton of cute poses picked out on Pinterest, but they were all outdoor spring/fall type pictures and with temperatures in the negatives yesterday (just to give you an idea of our weather), that was not an option for our photos.

The below photos were taken in my dad’s studio on January 3rd at 37 weeks + 4 days. There are also a couple of casual shots at the end of the post.

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^^ “Caleb” blocks and the big old belly.

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^^ “Caleb” with our wedding rings.

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And below are just a couple of quick, casual ones my dad snapped of us in Caleb’s nursery this past weekend on January 11th, at 38 weeks + 5 days.

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Bumpdate: 39 Weeks

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I am 39 weeks today! I wasn’t sure if we’d be seeing this update, but here are! It sounds like there will be at least one more too…

I had my 38 week appointment last Wednesday. I was slightly effaced but had no dilation. The doctor predicted Caleb will weigh around eight pounds and that he will NOT be coming early. I JUST got back from my 39 week appointment, and same thing… no dilation! Bummer. The doctor said “looks like this will be a tough one!” Caleb does not want to come out, the little stinker! I’m going back next Wednesday for my 40 week appointment and then he said induction would occur 1-2 weeks after my due date, and it kind of sounds like I may have to get induced. He said the baby will continue to grow so I would definitely NOT like to go to 42 weeks. Really hoping they will do it sooner rather than later, so I will definitely discuss it with him further next Wednesday. I didn’t gain any weight this week though, which the nurse said was a good sign that he may come soon, and the doctor also said it was actually a good sign that I was having stabbing back pains – haha, go figure!

In other news, last Friday I got my eyebrows waxed, and today I got my hair cut. Priorities, right?! I am SO not a girly girl, but I do want to look as decent as possible in the millions of hospital and new family photos we are bound to be taking. I have to be honest, I am feeling so fat, bloated, and gross right now. I definitely am feeling how I used to before I lost all the weight, and I am really looking forward to getting back into shape. Feeling like this reminds me exactly why I lost 118 pounds in the first place and I can’t wait to look and feel good again. I know it will be a long hard journey, but I’m okay with that.

So now  that I’m all groomed and ready (haha), there really isn’t much left for us to do but wait. We got the carseat installed and inspected at the firehouse on Wednesday, his nursery is 100% complete (I posted the tour yesterday), and we are ready to go, it just sounds like Caleb is not!

I had been hemming and hawing about when my last day of work would be before going out on maternity leave, and finally decided that it would be today. I ended up leaving early yesterday and only did a half day because of nausea and back pain, and I will just be doing four hours this evening, then I’ll officially be on leave. I’ve spent a lot of time over the last couple of months getting things ready for my leave at work and feel that all my loose ends are tied up there for the time being. It will be hard not to stress or think about work while I’m out, but I really need to spend this time focusing on my baby, my family, and myself, so I am feeling relieved too. I’m planning on being out for about three months or so.

I’ve been feeling okay, but just incredibly tired and not sleeping well. Yesterday morning, as I mentioned, I was feeling very nauseous and I’ve been hit a few times with intense, stabbing back pains… part of the reason I decided to take my leave now instead of trying to tough it out the rest of the week. Honestly, I’m proud of myself for making it to 39 weeks at work and feel that I’ve pushed myself enough and now it’s time to rest and prepare for Caleb’s arrival!

We sure are getting antsy over here. I told Jerry yesterday that I asked Caleb if he was ready to meet the world yet and that he said, “Nah, Mama. I’m good. I heard it’s cold as f*** out there.” Yes, pretend conversations with my son who apparently has a potty mouth in the womb! But really, we’re over here just counting down the days until we can finally hold our little man. :) I am slightly disappointed that we have no progress yet except for a little effacement, but I’ll have more time to rest and prepare. Not to mention, my birthday is this Saturday!

Well, it sounds like I’ll be back for a 40 week bumpdate next week, so more news then, I hope!

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Waiting for Caleb: Nursery Tour

I am officially declaring this “Waiting for Caleb Week” on the blog! He’s due in just eight days on January 20th, so HOPEFULLY this will be our last full week without our little baby! Fingers crossed and good vibes for us, please and thank you.

So I’m kicking off the week with his official nursery tour today! I’ve shown bits and pieces here and there on Instagram but it’s 100% complete now so I can finally do the full tour! I’ll have my usual bumpdate tomorrow, and then I’ll share our maternity pictures later in the week. If you’re not into babies, sorry, but this week is all about us waiting for the the baby. Normal blogging will resume shortly, but our brains are currently occupied and wondering when he will make his appearance.

The nursery is fairly small, about 10 x 10, but we chose the smaller of the spare bedrooms in our house because we thought it was the perfect size for a nursery. We’ll move Caleb into the larger spare room when he’s older and keep this as a nursery for baby number two! The room is directly across the hall from our bedroom where he will sleep in a bassinet for awhile before being moved to the crib.

When we moved in, the room had wooden floors that were a bit dinged up, and white walls that needed a new paint job. We got the room carpeted, painted the walls gray, and added a ceiling fan/light fixture since there were also no lights. After we got those initial renovations finished, we were able to start on the fun part of decorating and furnishing the room!

When we found out we were having a boy, I immediately started looking up nursery themes and sets online. Jerry gave me the go ahead to choose and decorate however I wanted. I had a few different options and bedsets on watch on eBay. I eventually settled on light gray and yellow elephants and I am so happy with my decision. I love how the colors look together and it’s not a theme I’ve seen often in nurseries. We also added a few pops of gray chevron here and there.

My parents were kind enough to furnish the majority of his nursery as a gift. They purchased the crib, dresser/changing table (both from Target), and glider chair (from Walmart)! We found the bookshelf on Craigslist that was the same exact color as his other furniture since it was also from Target, and that did it for the furniture pieces. Since this is likely the last time his nursery will ever look as nice as it does now, I asked my dad to take a few pictures since he’s a photographer. I added a few of my own photos at the bottom with some of the smaller details too. Enjoy!

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^^ This wall is when you enter the room and go left. It contains the bookshelf and crib. The pennant banner above the crib was quilted by my grandma and says “Caleb.” I love pennant banners and made a paper one at his gender and name reveal party to reveal his name, so Grandma made us a much nicer one for above his crib.

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^^ A view into the crib. The elephant quilt was purchased with his bedset, but the quilt hanging on the other side of the crib was also made by my grandma!

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^^ This is the wall opposite of his crib, when you turn right into the room. It includes the dresser/changing table and diaper genie, and that’s about it!

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^^ I love quotes and have various words hanging all over my house. I found this set on Etsy. You could purchase the files, which my parents then downloaded, printed, and framed for us. I LOVE IT! These hang above his dresser.

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^^ More little details. His diaper caddy is on top of the bookshelf and ready to go!

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^^ This was made by a coworker’s daughter as a gift and hangs next to the door and closet!

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^^ Another crib shot!

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^^ Canvas handmade by my friend! I am in love with this. It’s currently the background of my phone.

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^^ The window wall is front and center when you walk into the room. My mom made the valance! Next to the window is the glider.

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^^ The glider sits in the corner of the window wall and crib wall. The canvas tote next to it contains all of his bathing supplies.

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^^ Bookshelf closeup. Yes, he has Little Critter and Arthur dolls! The gray and yellow box on the bottom contains mementos from the baby showers and cards we received for him.

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^^ On top of the bookshelf. Diaper caddy purchased from Target. The elephant (as well as the elephant in his crib) was purchased at a Ronald McDonald fundraiser giant garage sale.

And that’s it! Not pictured is the inside of his closet which stores his huge stash of diapers and wipes, his blankets, and plastic drawers containing socks, onesies, swaddlers, and shoes. We also have some of his other things stored in there until they are ready to use, like baby carriers, video monitor, etc., and then some clothes hanging, of course.

Now we just wait for the baby to come home and fill the nursery. :)

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Five on Friday (4)

It’s been awhile since I’ve done a Five on Friday post, so here we are! Happy Friday!

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ONE. Even though it is SO freaking cold out, there is some consolation in that it’s hot chocolate season. I’ve been devouring the stuff like crazy and am becoming a total hot chocolate snob this year. I used to drink it with water (either a K-cup or just the cheap $2.00 boxes of Nestle or Swiss Miss pouches), but now I am all about using milk. It’s so much creamier and yummier… how did I used to drink it with water?! I was also spoiled by my friend Beth who sent me some homemade kind with mini chocolate chips… mmm. It’s almost gone, then I don’t know what I’ll use! I am not a coffee drinker though, so hot chocolate is my go to hot beverage of choice. Any recommendations?

2015-01-07 20.12.48^^ Enjoying with Jerry.

TWO. I’ve recently rediscovered my love of Paperbackswap after a hiatus of oh… maybe three or four years? Ha! I totally forgot about it. When I finish reading one of of my own books, I usually pass it on to my mom or the library, but recently I’ve been listing a few on there again and I forgot how much fun it was! It’s kind of annoying having to pack up the books and go to the post office, but I like getting credits and swapping for other books. Here are some of the ones I’ve gotten from there recently:

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THREE. As some of you know, Jerry works evening shifts while I work days, so we don’t get to have dinner together often, except for weekends. Since he works at a college, he had quite a long holiday break and it was fantastic. Not only did we get to spend a lot of quality time together before baby’s arrival, we also got to cook together a lot. I found a bunch of recipes on Pinterest we’d been meaning to try, as well as some old favorites, and I meal planned all fancy-like. My favorite new recipe we tried was this French Onion Chicken Noodle Casserole. Mmmm… it tasted like alfredo and I highly recommend it. We also tried a Dorito casserole, which we were sadly not fans of, and made a couple of our regular Crockpot favorites (beef stroganoff and chicken and dumplings). I am a HUGE fan of the Crockpot. Let me know if you have favorite recipes for it that I need to try… the easier the better!

FOUR. I’ve mentioned it before, but when I transitioned my blog from a book blog to a personal/lifestyle blog last year, I had to think long and hard about my blog design. I decided that as much as I love it, I needed to eliminate the bookish feel since I’m no longer really a book blogger. Jerry decided to work some overtime and save up the money to pay for my re-design for my Christmas gift and we finally saved up enough! Jessica over at Cobblestone Marketing will be doing my new design and will be starting it next week! The bill is paid and I have sent her all my ideas and I simply CANNOT wait to see what she comes up with. She’s the one who designed my current one and transferred me over from Blogger to self-hosted three years ago now, so I know whatever she comes up with will be just as amazing. I’m excited to work with her again. As always, I am on the hunt for other personal/lifestyle blogs to follow since I recently made the transition, so leave me some good suggestions, including your own if we aren’t blog buddies yet! :)

FIVE. Well, we are now at the “impatiently waiting” stage of pregnancy where we just want to meet our little bambino but are trying to enjoy things in the meantime before life changes forever (in the best way possible). Two of my best girlfriends came over last weekend. Jerry was home early from work so we went and got frozen yogurt then played a fierce game of Apples to Apples. My friends and I get seriously vicious over games. It was a fun night, and probably one of the last ones I’ll have with my friends before becoming a mommy. I know life changes in a million ways when you have a baby, but I truly do have some of the best friends in the world and I know they’ll stick around. That doesn’t prevent me from being a bit nervous about how much life will change, but more than anything, we all just can’t wait to meet him!

20150107_183025^^ Random picture Jerry took of Dakota and I on Wednesday. His facial expression cracks me up. Such a jerk.

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Bumpdate: 38 Weeks

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Well, we are 38 weeks today! The doctors told me that at 38 weeks, I should have everything ready and my hospital bags packed… yikes… this is really it now!

Tomorrow is my next doctor’s appointment and I am hoping we’ll see some progress and dilation. I would be happy for him to make his appearance any day now, though I have a feeling it will be a couple more weeks. We’ll know more tomorrow, I hope!

I had a crazy burst of energy and nesting on Sunday. For a couple of hours, I ran around the house like a crazy woman cleaning and organizing, mostly in the nursery, though I also organized the hall closet. I finished packing up my hospital bag as much as it could be packed until go time (need to add chargers, iPad, etc. on the day of). I also did three last loads of laundry for the baby, and now ALL of his stuff is washed and put away, including all clothes, blankets, towels, socks, etc. I’ve been doing baby laundry for months! I also finished organizing his room and everything is finally put away. It’s basically ready to go now, we just have to hang up a couple more prints and we are DONE! I’m really happy with how it looks and I can’t wait to share a nursery tour next week! We thought this burst of energy might have meant labor was imminent, but I’m still here and baby-less two days later. He has been moving like crazy though and has had the hiccups a couple more times. On one of those occasions, the hiccups were in my pelvis so that was interesting! Haha.

Tomorrow we are planning on going to the fire station to get carseats installed and that will bring us one step closer to being 100% ready for the big day. I also got an interior car wash last week because nesting and anxiety and not wanting my baby in dust. Jerry’s is getting washed this week. Is this normal? Who knows, but I’m a spaz and I want the baby in clean cars! Hopefully I can get Jerry to put the stroller together this week too.

I definitely hit a wall this past weekend, and except for that random burst of energy, I have been bone tired lately. I’ve been tired throughout the whole pregnancy of course, but it’s hit all new levels in the last few days where I just want to slump around and can hardly keep my eyes open. Maybe this is a labor sign, or it could just be the whole nine months pregnant thing. I felt awful yesterday with horrible back pain and heartburn, and my hips have been hurting a lot on some nights when I try to sleep. I am now just counting down the days until he is here, but we don’t really know when to count down to. I’m working the rest of this week and for next week, they are leaving me off the schedule. I can call them and come in if I decide to. If the baby isn’t here yet, I definitely plan on working next week too, so we’ll see.

My dad is a photographer and I had him take a few maternity shots for us this weekend. I should have done more poses because we only got a couple, but again, with the bone tired thing I just wasn’t feeling it. I’ll make a separate post for the photos. I might actually try to get a few more shots this weekend since we only got a very small amount and not a whole lot with Jerry so those will be up on the blog soon.

Will this be the final bumpdate?! Probably not, but it’s good to dream. :)

 

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Things to remember when my son grows up…

Though he isn’t yet here, I already know there are a million and one things I’ll want to remember about my son when he starts to grow older. I need to remember to take it all in and record it all to memory: his silky tufts of newborn hair. His tiny nose, his perfect toes. His little cries in the middle of the night.

Right now though, as I continue into my ninth month of carrying him with me, I want to always remember this: his movements inside of my big, baby-filled belly; feeling him growing, and being struck by tiny punches, kicks, twists and turns. For over nine months, where I have gone, he has gone, and anything I’ve done, he has done with me. And I feel him in there, this perfect person that I have created with my husband and have grown in my body, who likes to make sure I know that he’s in there. With ninja-like moves and baby dance parties for one, he is always reminding me (as if I could ever forget) that he’s with me.

I want to remember laughing manically with his dad as he rests his hand on my belly and waits for the movements to start. I want to remember looking on in awe as the waves and rolls in my belly become visible… our son!

I want to remember these feelings of my child when he grows into a teenager and no longer thinks his parents are the coolest thing in the world. I want to remember, when he is married and loves another more than me, that even as a 30 year old man, he will always be my baby. I want to always be in awe of him, the way that I am now. I want to marvel at the things he does, like we marvel when he moves.

I understand now why it is so hard for parents to let their children go and grow up. I understand because I feel him growing in me every day. He is so much a part of me, physically inside and attached, walking around with me every day, giving me kicks to remind me he is there.

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Goodbye 2014 and hello 2015!

2014 has been A YEAR! The past few years have been full of nothing but huge changes for myself and Jerry, and this was probably the craziest year yet… but in a good way. I want to recap some of the biggest moments of 2014, as I do every year.

A baby on the way…

In April, we became pregnant and were delighted to find out the amazing news in May. I took several early pregnancy tests which came back negative, but I decided to keep taking tests because I just had a feeling. When we finally received a positive on May 13, 2014, just a few days after the negatives, we were ecstatic. I took a test while Jerry was at work, and when he got home at 2 in the morning, he brought home another one. There were happy tears while we sat in our little bathroom in the middle of the night. It was one of the best and most exciting moments of our lives. Also thrilling was finally finding out and announcing the baby’s gender and name back in September! We cannot wait to meet our baby in just a couple of weeks! The whole story of our pregnancy is now told on my new blog page “Baby Caleb,” so please check it out.

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^^Learning the good news in May 2014, Mom and Dad to be on Christmas 2014 at 36.5 weeks pregnant.

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^^Caleb, 20 weeks

A home of our own…

Another momentous and life altering occasion happened in 2014, when Jerry and I closed on our first home on March 28th! It was a long, stressful, and difficult journey with tons of back and forth with the bank, and the day we finally closed was one of incredible excitement and happiness. It’s been a crazy nine months as homeowners, including lots of ups and downs, repairs, and renovations, but ultimately, we wouldn’t trade being homeowners for the world! We are proud of this huge accomplishment and can’t wait to continue work on our house as our budget and time allow. For more of our fun homeowning adventures and renovations, click here. You’ll see all my posts about being a homeowner.

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An exciting first year…

Amidst all of the excitement and huge changes for our little family in 2014, Jerry and I celebrated our very first wedding anniversary on October 5th, 2014! I still can’t believe it’s been over a year since our wedding. We had a very low-key but fun anniversary weekend. Clearly, it has been a very huge and eventful first year of marriage, and even when things aren’t perfect, I’m always glad Jerry is the one by my side. Our whole love story has its own blog page now, located here.

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Blogging changes…

My little old blog here has seen quite a lot of changes in 2014 as well. It’s basically transitioned from a book blog to a personal/lifestyle blog after a huge blogger identity crisis. While books will always be my passion in life, after blogging for over five years exclusively about books, (my five year blogiversary was in September) I suffered some burn out. I most certainly am still reading, and even still reviewing on occasion, but I’m liking the way my blog has transitioned and I have really, really enjoyed becoming a personal blogger. I talked at great length about my decision to no longer be exclusively a book blogger here, if you’d like to know more! To go along with my new blog theme, I am also getting a new blog design and tagline very shortly which I am super excited for!

I haven’t tracked my blog stats much in the past, so I don’t have a means to compare, but below are my main stats for 2014 for my own future reference. I have no idea if these are good, bad, or in between, but I am very happy with my blog and that’s what matters!

Total page views: 39,618

Total visits: 27,787

Most viewed post in 2014 with 3,603 views (posted in 2013 though!): How to Lose Weight Without Dieting

More memorable moments and posts of 2014…

While I covered most of the big things of 2014, there were some other memories, moments, and blog posts worth remembering from the year:

  • The year started off on a rough note during my short lived dog fostering adventure. See, I was a dog foster for a little bit of time, until I had an awful experience with a very sick dog. This tribute was for Oliver, who touched my heart and broke it, too.
  • I have survived more than a year as a night-shift wife! It’s tough, but we do what we have to do to support ourselves and our growing family.
  • The same weekend we bought our house, I bought my Jeep! WOOHOO! I have always wanted one and I finally have one.
  • I learned to accept my introverted nature a bit more this year, and talked about what it means to me to be an introvert.
  • I had a goal to run five races this year… but then I got pregnant. I did get to run one race though, and it was a lot of fun!
  • I celebrated my three year “adoptiversary” with Dakota! He’s kind of a nuisance, and I’m always saying ridiculous things to him in the form of scolding, but I love him dearly.
  • Even though my weight loss is on hold for the moment until after the baby is born, I detailed my fat story, discussed my problem with food, wrote a letter to the old, fat me and as embarrassing as these things are, at least I’m not an asshat who judges fat people like this lady I had a dealing with.
  • I worked on trying to not compare my life to others and realized that it’s okay to not be perfect!
  • I also really learned how to be financially responsible and a lot more thankful for what we have. We may not have all that we want but we have all that we need and I am thankful for everything we do have… it IS enough.

Bring on 2015…

Usually, I set myself a ton of goals each year but I’m going to try and be realistic here and refrain a bit.

2015 is the year my life will change the most. I am going to become a MOM! I know that nothing will be the same after our son is born and this is a GOOD THING because along with all the changes that come with being a parent will come an indescribable love! We are ecstatic and anxious, and simply cannot wait to meet our baby. So for 2015, all I really want is to learn to be an amazing parent and family of three. That is what 2015 is all about for me. Everything else pales in comparison.

That said, I will state a couple of other intentions I have for the year. I’d like to read 50 books. I’d like to run another half-marathon, or at least a couple of other races. I’d like to get fit again after he is born, and lose most, if not all, of the pregnancy weight by the end of 2015. I will continue to work on our finances, saving when we can and keeping our finances in order. I’d like to continue with house renovations, but I’m not sure what projects we’ll tackle next… and I think I’ll leave it at that. I’m not going too in depth with my goals because I really have no idea what having a baby will bring, except that life will change drastically in only the best possible way. I definitely plan on continuing to blog as much as I can, and chronicling our life as a growing family into the new year!

Happy New Years to all of my wonderful blogging friends, both old and new. I have made a few new blogging friends this year thanks to my transition into personal blogging, and I have enjoyed following along in all of your lives. I hope to continue these friendships into 2015 and beyond!

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Bumpdate: 37 Weeks

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Today I am 37 weeks which means FULL TERM! Yes, we have a full term baby on our hands now and the countdown is on! I have a long update today.

Just got back from my 37 week appointment where we had a bit of a scare. His heartrate was around 180 at first… the doctor tried two different dopplers and listened for a few minutes and it wasn’t lowering, so they hooked me up to one of those monitors that track his heart. I was hooked up for about 30 minutes. His heartrate went back to normal but it was a big scare! They think it was just from him being active. They also told me I had a contraction during that time, but I didn’t feel it. I asked the nurse if that meant he was coming early but she said not to get excited since it was only one. I had my strep test done too. They still didn’t check for dilation. They said that would start next week. I measured at 36.5 which they said was good, and I finally didn’t gain any weight… what a relief! I’ve also read that weight loss stops towards the end of pregnancy, so this is a very good thing.

So what else is new… well, my wedding rings are officially off and I am sad about that. :( I usually take them off every night to sleep, but last week decided to just keep them on because they were feeling snug. My sister-in-law warned me that I should just take them off instead so they don’t have to be cut off down the road. My fingers are short and stumpy anyway, and now they are bloated. I can get them on and off but it’s a tight fit, so they will have to wait until the bloating goes down a bit.

Last Wednesday, Christmas Eve morning, we had a “mini birthing class” with a nurse practitioner at my doctor’s office. My doctor suggested this since we couldn’t go to the hospital classes due to our work schedules. It was reassuring to learn more about labor and delivery, but also pretty scary. I do feel a bit more prepared though, so that’s good. She taught me breathing techniques and a ton of other things that I sincerely hope I remember when I’m in labor, but I’m not totally counting on it. I have always been completely terrified of giving birth, even well before I was pregnant. I do not handle pain well so I really don’t know how this will go. I would rather have a c-section, but I know they are more dangerous and not really optional so I am trying to calm myself down about delivering a baby!

The family also took birth date bets on Christmas Eve at our family party since we have six family birthdays in January, and his due date (January 20th) falls smack dab in the middle of mine and Jerry’s birthdays (the 17th and 24th), which are a week apart. Everyone is hoping he lands on their birthday, except for me, I think! I don’t think he would want to share his special day with his mom, but I could be wrong. Jerry is rooting for him to come on his birthday, the 24th, so we’ll see! One of my uncles placed his bet for January 31st and I’m thinking he’s pretty crazy. This baby better not be 11 days late! I will be asking for an induction well before then – haha! In other news, I had a family member make a really nasty and thoughtless comment on Christmas Eve… the very first thing he said when he saw me was “you lost all that weight and now you’ve gained it!” Umm… yeah. You don’t say things like that to a pregnant woman because 1. she is already self-conscious about the weight gain, no matter who she is, and 2. she is very hormonal. You ESPECIALLY do not say something like this to someone who has lost over 100 pounds. The weight gain has been a hugely upsetting factor for me because I did work very hard to lose over 100 pounds. It took everything I had in me for over two years so I am obviously not happy to be gaining weight and idiotic comments are only adding insult to injury about something I am already aware of. It is very important to be tactful around pregnant women and this was the exact opposite. I have gained more than I should have and I am well aware. I am also well aware that my stubborn personality has served me incredibly well in losing weight once and I am confident I will do it again in the new year after Caleb is born. You can all take my word on this and watch me do it! SOOO… moving on!

We had a little bit of a false labor scare on Friday. Jerry and I were talking around Aldi’s when I got some short Braxton Hicks contractions and I started to get paranoid that my water had broken. I called the doctor over the weekend who assured me everything was fine and not to worry… phew.

I have made a lot of progress with my hospital bag since I received a lot of the things I needed for Christmas including some sweatpants, a robe, and new slippers. I’d say it’s about halfway packed now and I have a list of the final things I will need to throw in there last minute, so I’m feeling pretty good about that! I’m getting my car washed soon and then we will be getting the carseat installed. Jerry and I also spent some time last week doing some organizing in his nursery and it should be complete very soon!

Caleb now has a new pediatrician too. I called our top choice (my nephew’s pediatrician) in September and was told he wasn’t taking any new patients, so we went elsewhere and got him signed up. However, at my nephew’s last appointment, the doctor told my brother that he WAS taking new patients so I called again and now he’s good to go there. We have a prenatal appointment there next Friday to meet him. The other place we signed him up for was nice, but this one is closer to home and right next door to my OB-gyn. My brother also really likes him.

I am still working and not quite sure yet when I’m going to start my maternity leave. I have always planned to go as long as possible, but this last month is rough, I’m telling you! I worked a full day yesterday, and will be working half days today and Friday with Wednesday and Thursday off for the holiday. For next week, I asked for one full day and the rest half days and then told them we would go from there. My leave is unpaid so I am being extra cautious and trying not to go out too early. I will have a few weeks of vacation and sick time that I can use, then the second half of my leave I won’t be getting anything. Boo. When did you all go out on maternity leave?

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