Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Now for something different...

Happy 7th Birthday to Guapo!!

This picture was taken at his 5th birthday party. I won't have time to get him a full cake, but I will be on the hunt for a little cupcake or a treat for him for tonight.


Also, in completely unrelated news, happy 34th birthday to Christian Bale! He is hands down my favorite actor. I've really enjoyed everything he's been in. Last night we saw Equilibrium and while the plot line was a bit thin, the action sequences were absolutely amazing! There were quite a few bigger name actors in that film that I was expecting. It was good stuff!


Monday, January 28, 2008

Recap so far...

These past nine months have been quite an adventure!

The end of May brought glad news. I bought the test while at work. I remembered getting teary-eyed and being so happy. I immediately said a prayer and gave thanks. We'd just gotten back from California for my great aunt and uncle's 50th wedding anniversary. I had the best time hanging out on the beach with Don and just being around the family.

Two weeks later, we jetted off to Mexico for our friends wedding. Again, I found myself in the ocean enjoying the natural rhythms of mother nature. I floated and felt at great inner peace. Even though my belly was starting to swell, I felt remarkable. I did get a slight bout of morning sickness, but I worked through it and all was good.

A week later, I headed south to Austin for my 30th birthday. Several close friends and family gathered on the party barge and we had a blast floating along the lake, listening to music, sunbathing, and eating loads and loads of my favorite foods. That night, we went out on the town and tore it up! It was such a gorgeous day (they predicted rain), and by that evening when it was time to go home, sure enough, the downpour started.

Another few weeks after that, I headed out to New York for work. Baby and I walked several blocks in the rain to buy her Nina's purse. We had our very own adventure in New York (as well as getting there!). It was a special time and I was grateful to have a taste of the city. I didn't get to do as much as I wanted, but I still got to experience a whole lot.

We also headed up to Kansas three times for very different occasions. It was good to see the family and hang out with them and catch up. We photographed Jeremy and Tara's wedding. We even did a bit of dancing and creative balancing to get just the right shot. On the Christmas trip, we were even lucky enough to see some snow, and again, more creative balancing on the ice so I wouldn't fall!

For Labor day, we headed out West to El Paso to visit my grandparents, your great grandparents. We took them to the casino. We also visited Best Buy, which was the very first time Grandpa had ever gone into one. At first he seemed a bit overwhelmed, but he really liked the big TVs. Grandma and I did some running around and shopping and I was just happy to spend the day talking with her. I think you liked it too.

We only wen to Lubbock for one football game this year, but we did manage to go for Thanksgiving, as well as, Brother's graduation. I didn't fit into most of my Tech gear, but I was lucky b/c Dad and Mom bought me a new shirt and some shorts. Speaking of, for Christmas, you also got some itty bitty Tech slippers to match Mommy's slippers.

And thinking about football, we watched a whole lot of football together. Most every Saturday and Sunday I spent parked in front of the television watching all sorts of games. I htink you got used to my yelling and hollerin' at the TV and Guapo barking right along too. It's only fitting that you are going to come when the official end of the football season comes to a close.

We headed out East to Longview to visit the Goetz family for the day. Me, your auntie Lindsey, and your auntie Ada stacked in a truck and had a blast on the two-hour journey. We had a ball talking and laughing, then eating when we got there! It's always fun to hang out with the family. Oh, and we even saw some clogging. I don't think I'd ever seen live clogging before. It was quite remarkable.

I also went to DC for a conference. I met up with my dear, dear friend Breeyon Miguel most of the nights there. We'd go for dinner and spend the rest of the evening catching up on life with the beautiful backdrop of DC looming in the distance. I walked and walked and walked and you loved it! I even had some Ethiopian food for the first time ever and it was delicious. You didn't have any adverse reaction to it. My mouth is watering thinking about it now.

We also went to quite a few concerts: John Mayer, Muse, Mana, and Tori Amos. You really, really enjoyed the Muse and Mana concerts. When they sang starlight, you just kept kicking and kicking. At the Mana concert, you had the hiccups because of the nachos I had and the shot of OJ. At the Tori Amos concert, a girl literally fell on top of me, but no damage done. I actually caught her leg without spilling my water.

Well, here we are with only 12 days until the due date. I can't wait to meet you!

Sunday, January 27, 2008

Drop it like it's hot

Happy 60th Birthday, Pete!

This past weekend was so refreshing. I had absolutely NOTHING planned. That is a very, very rare occurance for me. I knew this would probably be our last weekend where we wouldn't have anything planned and I should take full advantage of it.

On Friday, we had Burger Street and watched some random movie. I fell asleep before 10 and didn't get up until the next day at 9. I picked up baby's papasan rocker that I bought secondhand from one of the mom's that I met on the mommy's board. It was a great deal and I had such a great time talking with her. Afterwards, I went to Target and Babies R Us. I made it home and decided to skip the Heath Ledger Memorial Movie Marathon that I'd originally planned and decided to do some cleaning. I cleared out the living room, mopped the dining room, threw away a TON of extra paper, wrote my thank yous, did all of Mari's laundry, and prepped the carseat with the BundleMe. My sister told me that I was nesting. I told her that I was just catching up on all of the stuff I had on my list for the past few months. Don was away at an all day conference for teaching, so I had the entire day to do whatever. I was tired when he got home, but had worked up an appetite. We went to Red Lobster for dinner, which was a complete mistake. I haven't been there in ages and I don't plan on going back for a long, long while. There were so many people there, so I opted to wait at the bar. We decided to just sit there and eat. While the food was prompt, sitting at the bar was not an ideal meal. There were so many people bumping into me and one particular loud mouthed woman going on and on talking about all of these movies she'd seen and kept telling the plot lines of some of the movies I wanted to see. She was awful! When it was time for us to go, she grabbed the chair before I was completely out of it. I couldn't even get out of the seat without her trying to overtake it. I told her, I'm struggling to get out, could you please step aside? She just blew it off and made a half-hearted effort to get out of the way. I went home and met up Danika for a Premier Jewelry party. It was a quick trip over there. Afterwards, she came by and we watched yet another random movie. We must've been on crack when we added those movies to our Netflix queue.

On Sunday, we woke up, went to church, and came home to make a fantastic lunch feast! We gave Guapo the last bone he received from Christmas and he devoured it in less than 15 minutes! This thing was more than 6 inches long!! I watched The Gameplan with The Rock. It is a typical Disney movie, very, very saccharine and predictable, but 'eh, it was ok. Don went to go clean the car and I passed out for a long nap. I was out at least an hour and it felt so good. The only reason I got up was because the baby kept kicking and kicking. I guess she was hungry. We went out to grab some Indian food at Chettinad Palace and it was AMAZING!! It looks like they remodeled a bit on the inside: new tiles, tables, and lighting. I miss the round tables, but the food is just as good as ever! I can't believe it'd been so long since we'd been back.
Anyway, afterwards, I needed to take a 38 week picture and got in the mood to take some artistic photos. This one was taken by Don and I touched it up with Photoshop. I absolutely love how exposed my belly is. I can look on it and remember what it felt like that that moment. She was actually kicking during that picture and rolling around. I wonder if the flash was bothering her.

And as far as a baby update, well, she has definitely dropped. I'm in full-on waddle mode and my center of gravity is totally whacked. Other than that, I'm sleeping well and I feel great. I'm just tired and hungry. I haven't been this hungry in a long, long time. Of course, since my stomach is smaller I can't eat as much as I want, but I am eating more frequent meals. Either way, I'm not complaining and I'm totally happy with where we are. I'm not in a rush for the baby to come.

Friday, January 25, 2008

Hilarious Baby Tips

I came across these and just had to share! This will come in handy especially for those people who don' t have much experience with baby, but would like to know what not to do.












































I found it at C00lStuff.com

Thursday, January 24, 2008

I'm bigger today than I was yesterday

Yes, I've been clumsy today, but not in my usual form. My belly has grown in size and apparently I've not noticed. Poor little baby, I'm sure she's tired of me running into my desk. ha ha! I can hardly believe there's only 16 more days until the due date. Time has really flown by! So I made an appointment to interview a couple of pediatricians in the are. I'm really hoping I get lucky with the first one, but experience tells me that I should be patient and expect to meet with a few others just in case. Unfortunately, time is running out for me to have a mom-to-be meeting, so we'll see.

Yesterday, I received my order from Pokkadots and I LOVED everything that I got. Don is going to add the Bundle Me to the carseat. I plan to wash her black onesies and yoga pants tonight! And my favorite thing: the Flower Power nap sack. It is so soft and plush and just beautiful!! I was initially hesitant because of the cost of it, but it is totally worth the money, to me. I just found myself wanting to snuggle up against it and kinda wished I had one in my size too! ha ha!


HAPPY 67TH BIRTHDAY, NEIL DIAMOND! For those of you who know me, know that I love, love Neil Diamond. I've absolutely no reason to explain why, maybe it is something about the rhythm of the music. Or maybe it has something to do with the way I feel all giggly and jiggly inside when I hear Cracklin' Rosie. Random, I know. But c'mon, I know you secretly like him too! Or if you don't know who he is, do a search for him on YouTube. He rocks and sometimes rolls. Songs that he's also sung that I'm immediately familiar with: Coming to America, Sweet Caroline, Girl You'll Be a Woman Soon, Cherry, Cherry, and Love on the Rocks.
And now for a rant about Best Buy. So around Thanksgiving, I bought Don a surprise. I'd qualified for a no interest credit card and decided to get him a lovely surprise for Christmas. At the time, we still thought he was going to do this intensive hiking/camping trip in September, so I wanted him to be prepared. I went in there to buy a GPS unit. Of course, he actually wanted a handheld GPS device that is typical for topography information and not the street map kind that I bought. While there, I discovered a TV that I immediately liked and on a whim purchased that one as well. I took everything home, hid it away, and eagerly tried to hide my excitement over the next couple of days. Well, I finally broke down and showed him the TV and we got to talking about the GPS unit when I realized I'd bought the wrong kind. I went on the Best Buy site and they didn't carry the ones he was talking about. I would have had to have gone to REI to get the type he was interested in. Anyway, after a bit of discussion, we agreed to take back the GPS unit. Well, he set up the TV and I noticed that I didn't like the picture quality of it nearly as much as Cousin Simon's Samsung. Granted, his TV is much larger than the one I'd bought, but it just wasn't what I was wanting. So we decided to take everything back, with the exception of the Ratatouille DVD. Fine, the return was a breeze. I remember asking the girl if the warrantly that I'd purchased with the GPS unit would also be credited. She said, yeah, no problem, it is all automatic. The first bill came and I knew that the total would be off since I'd made the returns. I wrote a check for $20 knowing that the DVD was in and around that price range. Well, the next month, I see that I still have an outstanding balance of $50+ dollars. Oh hell no! I call up the Best Buy customer service and the gentleman explained to me that they had NOT credited the warranty information and that he'd take care of it. I asked if I needed to send in any sort of payment just to make sure my account was in good standing and he said no. Not necessary. I see you sent in the $20 that covered the DVD price and this item would be taken care of. Well, this month, I get the bill and not only is the charge still on there, but I get tagged with a $10 late fee! WTF? Really? I was pissed. So I called Best Buy up again and this time the rep tells me that there is nothing she can do on the Warranty side and that I'd have to call another 800 number to talk to someone else about cancelling it. I called that number and the lady said that she could cancel the transaction, but I would not receive the credit for the warranty since it'd been more than 30 days. I told her that was unacceptable and she proceeded to tell me that I could go into the store where I purchased the item and talk with the store manager and see if they could remedy the situation, but on her end her hands were tied. Now, I'm going to have to make a special trip there just to talk to someone at the front desk and demand that I get the full refund amount because I returned the item within the week of when I purchased it! Seriously, why in the world would I need warranty on an item that I returned??? How is something like that not automatic? Why was it that when I asked the clerk she told me it was automatic, but then it really wasn't? And furthermore, why is it not customary for the warranty return to be included in the return...the clerk on the phone told me that most times you had to special request the warranty be refunded too. NICE. Yeah, that was an extensive rant and I do apologize, but I'm really hacked off by the slack effort on their part. Best Buy is now up there with Target on my list. Grrrr....

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Memories for Mari

Your furniture...

Each piece of furniture in your room has a story behind it. Here is how it all came together.

your crib
It was the first part of June and I had recently learned of your existence. I was in the midst of planning my 30th birthday party: a huge party barge blow-out on Lake Travis. I'd had it in my mind that I wanted to buy myself a really nice piece of jewelry for my birthday. Something I'd give myself to commemorate getting to this place in my life. Well, I was browsing around on Overstock.com looking at their jewelry pieces, they had an ad for baby stuff. I clicked on it and found this beautiful ebony crib. I always thought a round crib would be something I wanted, but this one just stuck out. It was the right price and I loved that it would grow with you. I made a quick choice and decided that a crib would be more valuable than any piece of jewelry that I could buy myself. I placed the order and within a week it came. My only reservation at the time was that there might be two of you instead of one. Happy 30th birthday to me!

your dresser
Actually, your dresser was my old dresser. It was part of a set from your great grandmother's furniture. I don't know how it was that I came across it, but I do know that I had it during my formidable years. Your daddy refinished the furniture to match your crib. We both picked out new hardware for it and your Grandma Carol helped line the drawers with lavender scented drawer liner paper. I didn't want to line the top drawer because it had the original paper that was in the drawer from when I used it. I wanted something to remain from the old. It looked completely different since it had received a facelift!

your bookshelf
At the time of purchase, your daddy was working at World Market. We'd had our eye on this bookshelf for quite sometime. We were on a black furniture kick for some reason. Anyway, we saw this bookshelf and couldn't figure out where it would fit in the house. It was so beautiful and functional, but we just couldn't decide. Well, as the nursery started coming more and more together, we decided that it would work best for you. We really wanted to promote literacy and imagination in you, so you would definitely need a bookshelf to house all of the books that we'd buy you over the years. Since putting it up, we've added several more books and your Auntie Danika gave you several more books to enjoy as well.

your changing table
Our friend Jessica was in the process of purging items from her storage unit. She told me she had a changing table that she was just going to toss, but if we wanted it, we could have it, along with all of the baskets, as well as the basket liners. We took her up on her offer. Your daddy also refinished the natural wood and painted it black to match the other pieces. Your Grandma Carol sewed new liners to match the valance, crib bedding, and laundry hamper.

the glider
We looked and looked for a rocker that would go with the furniture. I knew I wanted something comfortable, functional, and preferably something with an ottoman and stool. We saw several over a few months, but none were in our budget or even came close to what we wanted. Then, we found one on Target.com. At the Kansas shower, we received enough gift cards to cover the difference of the cost of the glider from the money that we'd set aside. We ordered it and when it arrived in a week, your daddy put it together and we put it in the place where it is sitting now.

your end table
Auntie Danika is moving back to California and she had some furniture she needed to get rid of. One of the items was the end table. Your daddy refinished it to match the rest of your furniture. We needed a small table to set next to the glider for your late night feedings so we could have a place to put a glass of water or somewhere to put anything that we couldn't carry.

your ceiling fan & hand pull
We went to Home Depot to look for drawer pulls for your dresser, as well as, a new light fixture for the dining room. While there, we happened upon this ceiling fan that would go perfectly in your room. It was ebony with nickel accents, similar to the drawer pulls we'd picked out. It was on sale and the right size we were looking for, so we decided to get it. I love it when we go to Home Depot and have a great find! The hand pull on it is actually a Christmas ornament from World Market. I like the large beading and when I open your window blinds and sun catches them just right, there's this beautiful rainbow that dances on your walls. Plus, it is large enough that when you are you are able to focus on objects (and reach out and touch them) this is one of those that you will want to get.

other tidbits
  • The framed picture of your name in the sand on a beach with toes is from your Auntie Danika. She took that picture on Coronado Beach in California. We have a jar of sand from that beach.
  • There's a matted signature picture from my first shower for you here in Dallas. Everyone who came did a page in your scrapbook. They all signed the frame and in the picture is nearly everyone who attended.
  • There's also another framed series of pictures. That was from the co-ed shower where we watched the Packers lose to the Giants. The shower was fun, especially because we were able to reconnect with many friends that we hadn't seen a very, very long time.
  • The painting of the dragonfly was hand painted by your Auntie Ada.
  • The glass turquoise candle holder is another World Market find. I thought it was so beautiful and it looks great hanging over your bed. It adds a bit of romanticism, I think. Auntie Hayley gave us a fake flickering tea light candle to put on the inside of it, so we don't have to worry about the candle being lit. It just runs on batteries.
  • The hand knitted colorful bunny in the plastic cellophane was actually made by your great-great-grandmother Flo. Your great grandmother Skip found it and figured it would be something you would enjoy.
  • Your piggie bank was actually a gift from your Uncle Jorge and Auntie Hayley from when they went on their honeymoon to Mexico.
  • The baby block bank is a gift from your Aunt/Nina Sam.
  • The sock zebra and frogs are gifts from your Daddy. He gave them to you every time you started a new trimester. He was very, very excited for your pending arrival and wanted to be sure you had some fun toys to play with.

Monday, January 21, 2008

Place Yer Bets

Alrighty, we are getting closer and closer to the date for when the baby will make her arrival. Yesterday, we were so blessed to have our final shower: co-ed shower with all of our friends and my entire immediate family was there too. It was so very special to me and I was so happy to have everyone there. We were definitely "showered" with gifts and even though Green Bay lost, I learned quite a few new things about some of my friends when we played 2 truths and a lie.

My folks stayed with me and my father jokingly said, "You could combine all the stuff that I had from my 3 kids and it would still not be half as much as what you have for this one." That may very be true, but it is never bad to be too prepared, huh? Ha ha...plus, it doesn't help that I'm a gadget head. I can honestly say that I think we are prepared for baby, well, at least for the first month. =)

We graduated from our birthing class! Hooray! We've practiced the different breathing techniques, the laboring positions, and have prepared ourselves in the event that things don't go according to our plan. I'm excited, confident, and I know that the last minute nesting is any moment. So with that said, here are some of the guesses:



  1. January 23/24 - Lindsey

  2. January 26 - Ada

  3. Sometime this week - Michael

  4. January 27 - Christina

  5. February 3 - Zeni & Diane

  6. February 4 - ME! & Simon (says I'll go into labor at 5PM and deliver at 11PM, he's an optimist!)

  7. February 6 - Don

  8. February 9 - DUE DATE given by the doctor

  9. February 11 - Cristian

  10. February 12 - A lot of Don's family

Do you have a guess?

Saturday, January 19, 2008

CHOPPED...

I did it! I made the cut! At least 10 inches of my hair chopped off, bagged, and prepped to be sent to the Pantene Beautiful Lengths campaign.

I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE my new hair. Because I cut off all of the excess, it feels so healthy and revitalized! Many people thought that I'd colored my hair too, but since all of the summer colors were chopped off, it is actually one color instead of the myriad shades of brown.

BEFORE

Sorry for the low quality picture. It was taken moments before the cut!before

AFTER

after



What do you think?

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Nesting...

This past weekend, I also had the urge to do a lot of nesting. We cleaned up the living room, did some more work on the nursery, and started to put together some of the gifts that required assembly. Well, our friends generously gave us that delightful swing. Don put it together relatively quickly and we put the batteries in. We started it and the traditional lullaby music went off. I must admit I got a bit teary-eyed and again, I was flooded with a range of emotions. Talk about hormotional! So as you can tell by the picture, we've put the swing right next to the big comfy ottoman in the living room so Mari can hang out in there while we're in there. I think of it as her La-Z-Boy. When she gets bigger, it eventually turns into a toddler rocking chair. I love that it will grow with her! We also put a few more things into the diaper bags. This weekend I need to do some laundry to prep her clothes.

I also went on a mini shopping spree at pokkadots.com. They sell the American Apparel black onesies (bodysuits) for a bit less than the actual AA site. While there, I went ahead and bought the Bundle me Lite. We had registered for something similar, but I figured, 'eh, why not. This is something we could use from day one instead of carrying her around in her carseat with a blanket, covered like a caged bird (nothing wrong with that if you have the skills). I was never able to master the delicate act of balancing the blanket on the carrier so it wouldn't slip off, so invariably, the blanket would fall in the only puddle for 5 miles and be soiled! And of course, the baby would be totally exposed to the elements. Not a good thing.

Even though it cost a little more than what I wanted to spend, I went ahead and splurged for the nap sack. It was sooooooo cute and I know it'll provide much warmth and comfort for her for a long while. This is going to be her special blanket! I know the quilt my MIL made will stay with her for much longer than this, especially since she'll probably outgrow this soon, but I still thought it was something good for her to have. And yes, I did buy the black onesies. One was short-sleeved, the other long sleeved, and I also got some black baby yoga pants. They looked really soft and comfortable. I told cousin Simon about it and he said she'd be like a Sprocket from the old SNL skit. I didn't know what it was, so when I saw it, it thought it was HILARIOUS! I guess maybe it isn't conventional to dress babies in black. It isn't like she's going to wear black everyday and she certainly wouldn't need to worry about the slimming look. I've also read that the black exposes the spit-up stains more. ha ha! Well, we'll see. I know I'll use them as layering pieces anyway.

Yesterday, we watched the 2nd of 3 birthing DVDs that we had as homework from our birthing class. So far it has been very educational and there is now no doubt in my mind what I can expect. I don't have any levels of pain to measure it, but I have a full understanding of the technical elements of labor and delivery and that comforts me more than anything.

We also saw our other TV show addiction: Deadwood. This is another HBO series (that has unfortunately been cancelled) that we got hooked on shortly after subscribing to Netflix. I'm so terribly sad that there won't be another season, nor are there plans to follow-up with the planned made-for-tv movie either. I'd heard rumors about that, but alas, no such luck! It's all very disappointing. Either way, it was a good run and good while it lasted. I wish I would've had the opportunity to have closure to see where the writers were going with it. Now we just get to make things up for ourselves. In any event, it is very good writing, despite the inordinate use of profanity (which actually works for the show). The characters are so colorful, the costumes are amazing, and I know I already mentioned the writing, but it is fantastic!!! I love how you can despise a character, but totally find yourself pulling for them too.
Anyway, I wish everyone a great day! CONGRATS to Don for passing his pedagogy test. WAHOO!! We need to celebrate tonight. I'm thinking Boston Market.






Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Late Caffeine = Moody Mama

Yesterday, I hung out with my niece and nephew while my sister had class and my BIL was out of town. I picked them up from their after school care and my niece asked me what took so long for me to get them. I chuckled thinking, what do you mean it was long?? She counted 5 activities that they'd done at after school care before I'd shown up, so she was concerned. Apparently, no one mentioned it to her that I had a new job with a new location. My nephew was quick to point out that my newer job was in Dallas proper when I said it was near the AAC. Her eyes got big and she said, "Wow! That's really far!" So I guess that was a sufficient enough answer for her.

I took them to eat at Chick-fil-A for dinner. I wanted to practice the whole parenting thing, so I decided we could go in to eat. I let them order what they wanted (they are both very good about knowing what they want to eat). Well, while waiting for our food to be prepared, there was a balloon artist in the corner. He coaxed them over since no one was around making any requests. I leaned into the cashier and asked her how much the balloon animals cost. I had $1 in cash and wanted to prepare the kids in the event that they could not get one. Turns out, they were free. And let me tell you, this balloon artist was phenomenal. No regular poodles and such any more! My niece got this pink, purple, and white butterfly on a stick. It was so cute! My nephew had this alien perched atop a planet with rings and with a laser gun and helmet as accessories. This balloon creation was more than 2 feet high. INCREDIBLE! I wanted to give the dude my $1 because I was impressed, but there was no place to leave it. I guess he's just one of those guys that CFA contracts out. As it got closer to 7, more families showed up and there were more kids in line to get various creatures. One got a monkey on a palm tree (with coconuts on it), holding a banana. I so should've taken pics! Once we had our fill, we cleaned up and headed to the house.
We had a lovely talk about the 3 things they learned that day, their favorite subjects, their least favorite subjects, and their predictions for when baby Mari would make her arrival. Zeni guessed Feb. 3 and Cristian guessed Feb. 23. I chuckled at the second one b/c she'd be pretty overdue if I went that long. My due date is Feb. 9! I told them that I secretly hoped that she'd be born on Feb. 4. 2-4-8 (2+2=4, 4+4=8) When I told them of the mathematical part, my nephew chuckled and was like, "OMG...that's like a joke, but not really. It's funny, but it is also cool!" Then, he agreed that he wanted her born on the 4th as well. My niece wanted me to call her to let her know when she came. I told her that I was certain that her mommy would let her know. And she was like, "Um...no Nini, she won't be able to, because she's not going to be here. She's going to be at the hospital with you." Duh, right? LOL!!!
I swear those kids crack me up! We had a great time hanging out and watching part of High School Musical 2. I helped my niece straighten out her room and attempted to impart some of my organizational wisdom to her. I think it might've stuck, b/c she saw the logic in it. She picked out a purse to put her hair ties in, and chose another handbag to store all of her Polly Pocket things. It was fun! While we did that, my nephew was showering and getting ready for the next day. When he showed up, he had his book, The Dangerous Book for Boys and proceeded to explain to me about creating electricity using copper wire and other sorts of regular household bits. I explained to him that I once built an electromagnet in science class with a nail, wire, and a battery. He gave me an impressed look and wanted me to explain it in further detail. We had more fun chatting and working than just sitting there watching the television. The kids were in the mood to chat and I was totally ready to listen.

I couldn't believe how big they were: very polite, distinctive personalities, and overall good people. My nephew was willing to help me up and down the stairs...even he noticed my struggle to get around. My niece was thrilled to talk about her upcoming cousin. I guess she's ready for me to have a human cousin and not just hang with Guapo. Speaking of, they even asked about him and what he was up to that evening. They were a bit disappointed that I hadn't brought him. I love that they love him so much! I'm so happy that my sister is raising such good people. It gives me great hope in our future!

Anyway, I got home earlier than planned and Don and I had a The Wire marathon. We both totally love that show! It's so good and if you like crime drama, but very, very, very well written, I would recommend you check it out. I'd had tea for dinner and could NOT sleep. Hence the reason we spent four hours in front of the TV passing time. I was cranky and grouchy and overall felt uncomfortable. My head was killing me!! However, passing the time was great and I LOVED how the plot lines are unfolding. I haven't wanted to know what was going to happen next since reading the Harry Potter series. Note to self, no caffeine after 6PM!
Speaking of caffeine, today's intake is finally kicking in, so my head isn't bobbing any longer. I've achieved clarity and must enter the "en fuego" zone for maximum focus. Hope you all have a great day!

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

More Baby...25 days to go

Yesterday, I had my 2nd weekly visit to the doctor. He said everything is going nicely and I may have the beginnings of effacement (the softening, shortening, and thinning of the cervix). Not to worry, I'm not going into labor anytime soon. I'm right on track and so is Petunia. She's just a-growing and desperately trying to move, but I know that is becoming more and more difficult every day since there is limited space. The great news is that she's facing downward and not breech. Hopefully, she'll stay that way. Also, I've felt her drop a bit more, also known as lightening.

SHOPPING
Afterwards, I needed to run to the mall to get my thank you gifts for the co-ed shower on Sunday and figured, 'eh, I better educate myself to the children's stores in the mall. I'm very familiar with Babystyle, but that's only b/c they carry maternity wear. I also know about Janie and Jack, but was curious about the others. I went inside Jacadi, which is a children's boutique from France. Even with their amazing sale, I didn't think it was a good idea to shop there. Right off, I didn't notice any higher level of craftsmanship, nor were the fabrics softer or plusher than what I was expecting them to be for the price. So I bid adieu to the worker and moved on.

I happened upon this place called the Pumpkin Patch. I tickled me to see that it had set up shop right by the play area, which, by the way, was inundated with mommies chasing their kids. Each of their designer strollers parked neatly just outside of the play area. I walked in, not really knowing what to expect. Right off, I noticed fun and appropriate clothing for little girls. No short, midriff baring tops, or revealing skirts. There were bright colors, amazing fabrics, and loads and loads of stripes. Essentially, this is where I would've LOVED to have shopped when I was younger. I made a mental note to bring my niece here next time we were spending time together. This place is exactly her style.

I was in search of a take home outfit for Mari. I'd looked and looked these past several months and had yet to find anything that inspired me. I wanted something simple, comfortable, and lovely. Well, I found this little top. It's so cute and perfect! It is actually listed as a top, but I think it would be long enough to look like a dress. Either way, I plan to find some lavender or red leggings/tights to layer underneath. In person it is so adorable and when Don saw it, he too thought it was fitting. I have a lavender hairbow, but I will be on the lookout for red. Then, I looked around some more and found quite a few things for her. She has a lot of clothes, but not any real complete outfits, so I bought a few. I even got her dress for her great grandmother's birthday party. It's a little red dress with black and white flower embroidery. And of course, she HAD to have some pacheras (overalls) and jeans for when she works in the yard with Daddy. Nothing was overly pink and frou-frou, but still girly. I was proud of my purchases, especially because everything was on ridiculous sale. Duh! It's the after Christmas sales, huh?
BANANA REPUBLIC

Speaking of Daddy...he too needed a take home outfit. He's been working really hard on the house helping me to prep it and has also found new found energy to initiate a regular workout regimen. I'm so proud of him and I know his healthy living habits will prompt me to get in gear to lose all this excess baby weight. Anyway, I headed over to Banana to see what they had. I had $20 in rewards money and I was wanting to use my new Luxe card anyway. Sure enough, I found a nice pair of pants and a comfy looking shirt. The shirt is totally a spring shirt, but the pants are all season. I figured they'd be good to wear to work, as well. (Plus, they had so many fabulous clothes for women, but nothing for me until the excess fades!)



I'm not realy certain what his co-workers wear, but I know this is something My Michael would wear, so I figured it would work. Speaking of his co-workers, we went to his holiday party this past weekend. Because the holiday season is so busy, I guess they figured it would be best to organize it for afterwards. Anyway, it was held at the old Cottonwood Mill in McKinney. I'd first heard about this place nearly 3 years ago and had wanted to visit it to see how it would be as a venue. It was amazing. Very, very well laid out and perfect for a party. They had food catered by Sonny Bryan's and there was a live band playing for everyone's entertainment. The 10-piece band was lively and totally fun. We didn't do any dancing, unless you want to count swaying in our seats and tapping our feet. Not that we couldn't have, but it just wasn't one of those times where we felt like it. We were both content sitting there and coloring on the table and making our own drawings. It was great!

BIRTHING CLASS
Also, this past weekend we had our first birthing class. We met with Wendy Blumberg of Baby, Birth & You and she is FABULOUS! She is so calming and reassuring, not to mention knowledgeable. The three hours we were there flew by so fast. We covered a lot of what I didn't know and also practiced several breathing techniques. I felt so confident in my decision to deliver naturally. I know I have a great support team and I feel even more equipped because of the class. This was a really great decision for us, because we have that one-on-one attention, instead of being in a class with several other couples. She pays a lot of attention to how we interact and in some ways, this is like a marriage revitalizer. Every time Don and I do classes like this together it further solidifies our relationship and our "team" outlook. We have our final class this Sunday and our co-ed shower, too. My parents are coming to town and so is my Brother. I hope the whole family will be able to make it to the party. I'm very excited about it!

Hope you all have a great day!

Thursday, January 10, 2008

Hair Donation & Politics

Hooray, hooray for Thursday! Finally, a post that isn't consumed by all things baby. =) Enjoy my random musings for the day.

HAIR DONATION
For those of you who know me, you know that I've been eagerly growing out my hair to donate. My cousin Margie (who is also my Godmother) and Sara (a good friend of the family) have both had breast cancer and have triumphed with much grace and beauty. I knew that with my pregnancy, my hair would grow more (at least that was the hope) and I just suck it up and grow it out and give it to someone who could benefit from it. I'd thought about Locks of Love, and while I think it is a great program, I was greatly disappointed to learn that they didn't actually make the wigs, but sold the hair for money to subsidize wigs for children in need. Still a great cause and one that I would back, but just not quite what I was looking for...especially because I wanted my hair to be used for women who have lost hair because of cancer treatments. Then, I discovered the Beautiful Lengths program being put on by Pantene. Hilary Swank donated her pony tail to launch their Million Inch Chain campaign. I plan to contribute to that chain, so I've made my pledge and next weekend after the cut, I'll put my hair in the mail to them. I'll be sure to take before and after pics.


Like I said, my hair appointment is for next Saturday. I just measured my hair and it is 15 inches in length from tip to 1 inch above my pony tail and it isn't even straightened today! I will have more than met the minimum requirement of 8 inches. I'm so looking forward to a change. I've been looking through magazines for new hairstyles and when I was at the OB, I was flipping through the More magazine and found the one pictured here. Frederic Fekkai, the stylist who cut it, describes this style as a modern layer bob and I love it! I think the layers would help control the volume level of hair that I have and I really do like the length. SASSY! I would want slightly longer bangs, but other than that, I think it's perfect. Plus, I've been reading about women losing much of the volume of their hair after pregnancy (something to do with the hormones releasing the hair follicles to get you back to where you were, which is ok, b/c my original thickness was pretty voluminous) and this style would work. It's professional, functional, and a new look for my new role as mommy.


After years of going to the same girl, I'm also trying out a new salon: Salon Pompeo. I'm pretty nervous, but excited at the same time. I really like Eva Mendes' hair and I think we have similar textures. I'll also take a picture of this hairstyle to emphasize the length I'm going for. She has a few layers in her hair too, but not as much as the other picture. But I do like the lines on this haircut and how it works with her facial structure. I'll just have a good initial consult with the stylist to see what she thinks and to see if she has any magical tips to make my face not seem so round (duh, lose some weight! All in good time.)


Right now I don't have plans to do any coloring. That will come later when I know I'll have more time to maintain that color. Maybe a few lowlights for the summer, but I know I'm getting ahead of myself.

I will need new hair tools, primarily a blow dryer. I already have a flat iron that I enjoy and I've only had it for 2 months. However, I haven't religiously used a blow dryer in YEARS!! I've heard some great things about the Chi Nano Dryer and the Chi Rocket. Do any of you have any experience with either or is there another hair dryer that you'd recommend? Let me know if you do. I'm looking for one that is super fast, but won't dry out my hair.



POLITICS
I'm not an active politician and I still haven't decided who I'm going to vote for. There are still so many issues to review and educate myself on, but for now, I enjoy watching all the hype surrounding the Primaries and all of the campaigning. I found this web site that will actually ask you questions regarding different issues. Based on the way you answer them, it recommends a candidate more in line with the way you view the issues. Unfortunately, the questions are a bit too detailed for me, but I can see what they are saying. Often times in life, it just isn't so black and white, you know? Anyway, here is the site, check it out if you get a chance: http://www.electoralcompass.com/

Monday, January 7, 2008

Tired

Well, it finally caught up with me and today I'm TIRED! My entire body was ready to shut down. I actually woke up early to get to work and I'm glad I did. There was quite a bit more traffic than usual, and I attributed it to everyone going back to work. I had to leave work early to make it to my doctor appointment. I had to wait a little longer than normal, but I didn't mind. I was happy to sit there in the waiting room and read the magazines. Plus, I much rather spend more time in the doctor's office than it actually takes me to get to the office. It's a slow go these days, so that helps.

Radio Shack
Afterwards, I had to stop by Radio Shack to buy an earpiece for my phone. I finally broke down and bought a hands-free device. I normally hate these things b/c I can never hear properly, plus, my ear holes are shaped funky (they are kinda small and narrow), so those ear buds are never comfortable. I was better using a rubber band strapping my phone to my head than using a bluetooth. Well, I walked in and they didn't have the one I was looking for. I guess Radio Shack didn't carry that brand. Oh well, I came across this other one and it looked pretty good. The worker helped me get it set for my phone and since it was charged, I went ahead and made a call to Don. I could hear his voicemail clearly and so I figured it was a good buy. Plus, I really couldn't tell I had it on. I guess time will tell if it was a good choice.
Half Price Books
Then I headed over to Half Price Books since it was in the same shopping
center. Don told me that if I came across a certain book, then he'd like it if I bought it. Well, I couldn'remember the name. Something with the words "lunch" came through my brain, so I asked the worker if he could look up the author for "Lunch Money." He took me over to the section and I was surprised to see the book. I just assumed this was maybe a book that Don loved as a child. I wasn't sure, so I went ahead and bought it. I also got some parenting books, mainly books about what to expect for the first year and a complete pediatrician's reference guide for typical hiccups along the way. This is really good b/c I know I'd freak out and need an immediate answer. WebMD is good, but sometimes it is just easier to look it up in a book.

Well, I get home and turns out, Don let me know the name of the book was "Free Lunch" not "Lunch Money." So the random book I got was indeed very random and very, very different from what I bought. LOL! Ahh...preggie hormones, gotta love them. Now I'll head back to HPB sometime and look for it. I just thought it was hilarious! So very, very different indeed, huh?? Oh well, it's all good. He was a good sport about it and I think I may give this book to my nephew to read.

I got home and was totally spent. I waited for Don to get home so we could work out. I really feel good when I swim. Well, needless to say, we didn't make it. I nuzzled in with him and passed out. I felt myself fighting it and not wanting to nap, but I just needed to I guess. I slept for about an hour and it was so good!!! I just finished watching the BCS National Championship and now it is time for bed.

I bought this First Ladies fandex at JCPenney for only $3. I figured it was something that Mari would totally get a kick out of and so we've been reading about 1 lady a night. So far they've all been really interesting and it has become something I look forward to before bed. Anyway, have a great day!



Sunday, January 6, 2008

Hospital Tour and Prairie Creek Park

Today was an excellent day. Happy Birthday to Michael and Happy Three King's Day (Epiphany).The weather this weekend was ridiculously fabulous!

We had the hospital tour today and it made everything so real. Petunia kicked and moved during the entire tour and I wondered if she was aware of all of the other babies in-utero near her. After the tour, I asked my sister if she would be in the L&D room with me. I'm allowed two people, and of course, my beloved would be there. My sister is so very encouraging and positive and I know she'll be a wonderful support person for both Don and I. I know with her there, I'll be able to really get through it and stay focused. I got a little emotional thinking about it and when I asked her and I had to breathe through the happy/anxious tears. Afterwards, Don and I had a date at Abuelo's. I couldn't stop shaking. I had so much nervous energy, but it really is a good thing!

Then, I came home and friends came over. Jason helped Don move some dirt in the backyard and Jeev, Ada, and Camille and I headed over to Prairie Creek Park in Richardson to take some pictures. I wanted a trial maternity session run, but then it hit me that I probably won't have time to take these pictures again before Mari comes, so I'm glad that we did it! Here are some favorites:






We had a whole lot of fun running around and being silly. I got some other great shots of the friends, but I didn't want to post them before they got to see them. Many, many thanks to Ada for taking my pictures. I love them! I can't wait to print some off and put them in my photo album. (Yeah, you know you like my super balancing preggo skills. Yoga works!)
I have more to talk about, but I wanted to get this in tonight before bed. Have a great night and a great week! Best of luck to all the teachers who are going back to school tomorrow! Hooray! It's the 2nd half of the year. You can do it.

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