Once upon a time I was a blogger…

But then I had a baby and things get really busy when that happens. My down time is now spent on showers, cooking, cleaning, and the occasional sewing project, while me-time strongly resembles a trip to the grocery store or farmer’s market.

Today, however, I decided to take another shot at blogging from my kindle and thanks to predictive text, the fact that I’m writing one-handed isn’t quite the handicap it might otherwise be. I don’t know if this means I’ll be back more, because having a very active 11 month old takes most of my brainpower, but I do miss having a place to share. Sooo keep your ears to the ground and maybe I’ll be back again soon.

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39 almost 40 weeks

My post for 38 weeks is still sitting in the draft folder and there it shall probably remain. Why? Because I don’t like posting things once they’re no longer relevant and it no longer is since I only have 3 days til my due date. And because there is a good chance I’m already in early labor. There is of course the chance that it is more of my body just adjusting, but my midwife thinks it might be soon. I’m so excited, but don’t want to tell anyone I know because I’m fighting to avoid that watched pot feeling. So if you read this and you actually know me, please don’t say anything to anyone else and please for the love of all that is holy, don’t ask me if I’ve ‘had that baby yet’ or any other variation of that sentence. If you do, my response will be based on how I’m feeling at the moment, and I can’t promise it will be polite.

That disclaimer done, I’m really over the moon about the whole finally getting to meet our daughter thing and so is Jarell. That wonderful man is sticking close to home, but today the waiting proved too much so he’s working at the shop since we could use some income (no paternity leave for the self-employed) this week for the usual basics. I’ve been trying to get the nursery (formerly the craft room) cleaned out the rest of the way so we can move the furniture out of our second living room and get some clothing organization going. Its hard to feel motivated to get it done since she’ll be sleeping in our room, but between the two of us we finally made some headway the last couple of days.

To sum up the pregnancy at this point, here’s where things stand right now (so I can remember them for next time around)

Weight gain: as of my last weigh in, I had gained a total of 3 pounds for this pregnancy- I lost a lot early on when I was so sick and was slow to gain anything back.

Appetite: Finally back in full force- I have been eating everything in sight and that reminds me- I’m hungry again! I’m back on a spicy foods kick and we ate at a local Thai restaurant 4 times last week.

Food aversions: I still don’t like eggs much, although if they have enough “stuff” in them I’m okay. My favorite egg dish right now is an Italian omelet from a little diner in a nearby town- it tastes like pizza and is sooooo good!

Sleep: I’m still getting some. The little one tends to sleep when I do which is wonderful. I’m having more and more hip and pelvic pain tho and that makes for some sleepless hours toward the end of the night.

Clothes: Still wearing most of my pre-pregnancy stuff with the occasional pair of maternity jeans (I own 2 pairs) or skirt (own 1). Mostly I’m taking a hair tie and looping it through my button hole on my jeans, but that isn’t necessary for all of them. I’m definitely going to need new clothes post pregnancy, but its because I’m going to need smaller- so weird, right?

TMI: You can totally skip this part- go ahead if you like. Milk (or actually colostrum) is coming in now and I can hand express a bit which is helping to alleviate my probably unfounded fears that I won’t be able to breastfeed. I’m also at a point where the leukorrhea is picking up which, along with the stronger contractions I’ve been having and some other changes in my body, points to impending labor being close.

All in all, I think we’re as ready as we’ll ever be so the little one is welcome to make her debut any time she chooses. I’m not trying to rush things, but I’m thinking positive thoughts and trying to stay relaxed and calm. And now, I’m hungry, as I mentioned above, so I’m going to go find something to make for dinner.

4 and a half weeks left

I can’t believe that’s all there is til my due date. I found out I was pregnant very early on- I was only about 2 weeks along from conception when I took the test- but of course they measure from the start of your last cycle so at this point, I have gone the same amount of time as I had left when I first found out. (That’s very confusing, but read it slowly and it will make sense I think).

I’m starting to get to a slightly panicky/ sad stage because the baby shower that was in the works never happened. My sister in laws and mother in law threw a wonderful little shower when we were down at the lake a couple of weeks back, but it doesn’t look like there will be a shower that includes my side of the family and my friends. I realize this is a sad statement on my own family that no one cared to do this for me, but I was under the impression that it was all taken care of- my sister in law and I had come up with a date and a theme, and she asked for my address list, but that was as far as it went. I guess this is where not having close friends outside of my husband’s family becomes a downside- no one to throw a baby shower for me. I know I shouldn’t complain, but I was looking forward to the fun of doing a girly shower with games and decorations and hoping (selfishly I know) that I might get a few more necessities checked off the list before I had to go buy stuff. I had so much fun with the registries- finding things that we needed and I loved- but I could have saved myself the trouble since no one remembered I was registered anywhere until it was too late.

I’m trying to be positive about all of this and remind myself that I have a ton of clothes now and a few blankets and things, but its hard when I keep thinking that that’s it- no furniture, no bath, no first aid items, none of the other things I would normally consider baby essentials except the diapers I’ve been making and a diaper cake worth of disposables. Money is tight right now- we’re just trying to pay off the last third of the midwife’s bill (and do it quickly since I totally spaced on the date we needed to have it paid by) so that doesn’t leave much for buying the glider I desperately want for rocking her to sleep in or the crib I would love to have for nap time (we plan to co-sleep and I know at first I’m probably going to be sleeping right along with her, but there will come a point when I can lay her down maybe and then where will I put her? Jarell will be sticking close to home starting tomorrow when he gets home from Iowa so the larger paychecks that we’ve been relying on to take care of extra expenses will be gone and we’ll be back to the just barely pay the bills type of paychecks.

I know things will work out- there are many people who get by with much much less- but its very hard not to be sad when someone asks me when the baby shower is and all I can say is there probably won’t be one.

Trying to get away from all this negativity, there are wonderful things happening too- I get to have Jarell home for the next  several weeks and that is beyond awesome. I told him I loved him so much I would go through being pregnant and giving birth if it meant keeping him close to me for that long ;). This job in Iowa has stretched out so long that I hardly remember what its like to have him home for long periods of time. He’s been home for more than a week at a time a few times, but always working long hard hours (except when he ended up in the hospital last August) that kept him gone almost as much as if he weren’t home at all. I’m thankful that he will be here close by for quite awhile to help me with the things that still need to be done like turning my craft room into a nursery and all the other heavy lifting that I haven’t really been able to do for the last couple of weeks. Most of all I’m thankful to have my partner and best friend home with me when I need him most for emotional support. Its hard only talking to him for 15 or 20 minutes, at most, 2 or 3 times a day. That’s often the only contact we have when he’s working like he is now and it makes me appreciate the time I do have with him so much more than I might otherwise.

This is getting long and pathetic so I’m going to quit while I’m not too far behind. I need to make a run to the store to buy more needles for my serger since I managed to snap the one that was on there and then I need to find some basic canning essentials because I picked 32 lbs of peaches yesterday with my mother in law and I need to do something with them ASAP.

Mini Heat Wave

Missouri has been weird this year weather-wise and til today I was totally fine with that. The warm weather has sped up germination in the garden and warmed the ground enough for me to get all my warm season seeds in without worrying about losing them which, as I get bigger, has been a real blessing. The further along I get (just passed the 26 week mark on Monday) and the bigger I get, the harder it is to work with the hoe and rake to get the weeds out. The garden is so big that its a multiple day task just to get through it all and I have to take days off in between thanks to my screwy hips. All of this makes me incredibly thankful for the warm weather since it means I can get stuff done now rather than waiting another month when I will really be uncomfortable at the rate things are going. I keep telling this little girl to take it easy on her mama, but she’s got a mind of her own ;).

Despite being thankful for the warmth that has allowed me to get so much done, today I decided I’m not loving 90 degrees in April. At 7 this morning I was already uncomfortable even with the air conditioner running and temps outside cooler than inside. I’m uncomfortably warm now sitting still doing absolutely nothing and not very hopeful that things will get better at the rate things are going. I’m actually looking forward to the chilly weather on Saturday. I’m shooting a wedding for my husband’s best friend and the temps are supposed to be in the mid-60’s and I’m thinking its sounds like heaven. Big change from 2 days ago when I was worried I’d be too cold *grins*

I have been productive today even with the heat kicking my butt. I’ve been sewing up a storm, trying to get elastic in diapers for Little Bit. Its a tedious process, but I am excited as I finish each one to see one more cute little fitted diaper ready to go. I made soakers and wipes this morning as well and even made a little skirty soaker (fun fact: soakers can be liners or covers!- who knew?!)

This is the little skirty. Its a little wonky- very very hard to get into those tiny spaces, but I’m pretty proud of it for a first attempt. I have a feeling it will be way too tiny, but I’m also assuming this little girl will be at least 8 pounds like her mama and daddy were so we’ll see.

Speaking of being productive, I’m going to get back to work. Jarell is in Iowa again so I don’t have to worry about being in his way with all the sewing stuff. Dinner tonight is going to be steak (that I cooked last night) with wilted baby bok choy from the garden. Another sad downside of the weather is my poor bok choy is already bolting so I need to get it eaten up. It sure tastes good tho!

Finally Friday

Not that it matters much around here for me since my class is a Thursday through Wednesday class instead of Monday through Sunday, but Jarell being home for the weekend is ALWAYS the best part of the week whether he’s been working here locally like this week, or out of town.

I’ve been a busy bee lately between gardening, baby creating, (and creating for the baby), working on assignments, trying to get some cleaning done (not much, but some…), and running the various errands that go with my life. Monday I hit some thrift stores with J11 to look for some clothes for our annual Sisk Birthday bash that’s coming up. If you’re new around here, you won’t know there are 14 kids in my husband’s family, each name starting with the letter J (hence J11 is the 11th child) and, even with 2 kids who are still strict Jehovah’s witnesses, 1 that lives out of state, 1 we prefer to pretend doesn’t exist, and one we don’t see very often because her life is “complicated”, that’s still 9 birthdays to celebrate every year. A lot of those birthdays happen to fall in April so to make things easier, several years ago we started doing annual birthday parties for the April birthdays. This year, we’re combining everyone’s birthdays into one big event (yours truly included) to make things a little easier on this mama to be. The theme this year cracks me up because it is so appropriate for us. We’re doing a Redneck Bash. So the trip to the store was necessary in order to get Jarell a shirt I could rip the sleeves off for his costume. I myself plan to be ‘barefoot and pregnant’ which is just too easy, but should be fun.

While out at the thrift stores I scored some adorable baby clothes for super cheap (think 90 cents a piece!) so that made for a fun day.

Tuesday I overdid it in the garden getting corn, beans, okra, tomatoes, carrots, peppers, eggplant, and quinoa seeds in the ground. That evening I had to have Jarell just about carry me because with my hip problems + that wonderful hormone, relaxin, I took about 2 steps from the couch and got stuck. The pain was literally too much for me to move. So Wednesday I took a lukewarm bath with epsom salts to loosen things up again and took the day easy by helping my mother in law pick out plants for a flower bed around her house. We got mulch to fill in and spent the last hour tearing out weeds and the super invasive but delicious smelling chocolate mint that had gone haywire there. J12, 13, and 14 helped out to varying degrees- they’re practically grown up and at that age, but still really good kids so they pitched in. I hope to get over there this weekend with Jarell to finish the job.

Yesterday I spent too much time online entering giveaways for diapers and other baby stuff- figured hey why not. When I decided I’d had enough of that, I got to work in the garden again, this time digging a 16 foot long by 8 inch deep by 8-10 inch wide trench for my asparagus crowns. I’m glad to finally have them in the ground because I really want an asparagus bed and I was dreading the work that went with it. I took the tortoise way out and went slow and steady so it wasn’t so bad. I even took a break in the middle to plant zinnias next to my beans since they’re supposed to be a good companion plant.  Last but not least I set up a bed with some yellow straight neck squash inter-planted with nasturtiums for bug control. I’m really getting into companion planting this year because I want my garden to produce as much as possible so I can preserve it and feed us this winter. Its a huge undertaking, but having a baby on the way is a big motivator.

Today I’ll be hitting the library, doing an assignment, and then getting back in the garden to try and finish up with a few more things. This weather has been beautiful, but its crazy. My daffodils, crocuses, tulips and grape hyacinths (muscari) are all blooming at the same time and on Wednesday I saw irises blooming down the road! Fought off the first mosquitoes of the season yesterday and the ticks have been out for several weeks. I’m not complaining tho because getting the garden in now is a blessing since bending over is getting uncomfortable. Hopefully I’ll have some pictures soon to verify all this hard work but for now, Happy Friday!

Oh and a P.S. if you’re on Pinterest, come hang out with me here!

Baby Dresses

I found this free pattern from Made By Rae for an adorable baby dress and I knew I had to make it for Little Bit. These terrible cell pics below show the outcome.

The first one I made from some fabric I bought when I first found out I was pregnant. It is lined with a soft white knit fabric under the bodice to be gentle against baby’s skin.

I pleated this one and as seems to be my wont, despite care taken to make it even, I got it a bit off-centered so I added a flower with a button from my grandmother’s sewing supplies in the center. The trim along the bottom of the dress was also courtesy of her saving everything and I’m so thankful to make this dress just that much more heirloom for my little girl than it already was.


The second run through was really quick and dirty because I used a vintage pillow case with a beautiful crocheted trim along the open end for the dress. Its lined with more of the case and it is so sweet in white. I’m debating whether it will get any embroidery in pink to break up all that white and would love some feedback.

Sometimes it happens

I wander off unsupervised and forget to come back. Honestly its not a sometimes thing for me where this blog is concerned, its a most of the time thing. I have dozens of unfinished posts hanging out in my draft bin that either are no longer relevant (the most recent one was started the day I was officially 16 weeks pregnant…. 3 weeks ago) or I was passionate about something when I started, but got sidetracked and realized the fervor had worn off, or more often than not, I get started and then forget what I was going to write about and another half post goes into the post graveyard to die a slow and painless death.

Tomorrow, I will be 19 weeks pregnant. My pants are finally getting snug around the belly (thank goodness I have such a love of low-rise jeans!), the baby is VERY mobile, squirming around all over the place, making me giggle at the oddest of times. The new puppy is nearly 10 weeks old and litter box trained, making my life much easier. I’ve only got 3 days left of my current classes and then I move on to something new and hopefully a little easier on this pregnant mama. I have a new and greatly improved garden in the works.

My husband spent quite a bit of time yesterday driving back and forth between a neighbor’s farm about a mile and a half away in one of the big backhoes to bring me 2 year old horse manure that has been composted to the consistency of beautiful rich black dirt. (Hooray for awesome neighbors btw- this guy also gave us some firewood and disced our garden for us!) and I plan to get some of it spread out today so it can be tilled in this week if all goes well. We enlarged the garden from about 20 by 30 to 30 by 60 and 70 (one side is longer than the other) and I’m so excited about growing a much larger variety of veggies this year and hopefully preserving enough to keep us in local healthy food throughout the winter (I know- major undertaking for a gal who’s also preggers, but I’m motivated to take good care of this baby)

My husband is finally nearing the end of two jobs that have engulfed the last year of our lives, spending his weeks in Iowa far away from me and tho I am sad to see the better income come to an end, I’m so thankful that soon I will have him back home with me as I get further along in this pregnancy. Already things like severe round ligament pain have kept me laid up a bit when I really need to be getting things done or, worse had me out hobbling around in a lot of pain to take care of those things.

I’ve had good reason, with all these things going on, to have a hard time getting time to post, but I’ll try to make it back again a bit more often. For now tho, I’m going to get showered and dressed and go play in the garden now that the sun is coming out.

Fairytales

Sometimes I feel like I’m living in one. Honestly, as my pregnancy progresses, I realize that to many women out there, it probably seems that way, and I can see why they would think that. I’ve got the handsome prince, the life, the home, the animals *grins*, and even a less than pleasant stepmother. My prince slays each and every dragon that comes along without ever asking for anything in return which just makes me love him all the more. Our fairytale is modern tho. We had bad rentals, crummy jobs, lots of time with no money, disapproving mothers, and way too many siblings instead of evil queens or angry wizards to face. The trials were along these lines with a few curve balls like the prince constantly being out of town for work and a ghost from the princess’ past who wanted to replace the handsome prince and used all his wiles to seduce her away. They worked through all these things and were stronger for the battles they fought together.

Now we are expecting the successor to our throne- the first prince or princess of our very own and my handsome man has become even more amazing than ever. I’m talking working a full day, washing dishes on his lunch break, cooking dinner when he gets home, cleaning the house, sleeping on the couch with our new puppy (did I mention someone gave us a mastiff puppy?) last night so I could get a full night’s sleep for the first time this week. When I came out at 1 in the morning to find him asleep on the couch, puppy curled up on his chest and kissed him good night, his first words were, ‘hey beautiful’. I seriously don’t know how I could be more in love with this man, my sweet prince, and yet each day I find I am.

As Valentine’s day draws close and I think about all the traditional gifts women expect, I realize that this year, the only thing I want is more of this. More time with my husband, more time to be thankful for him, a way to give back to him and try to show him just how much he means to me. I’m ashamed to think of all the times I’ve been disappointed because he rarely buys me  flowers without hints and outright requests. My birthday is a hard one for him too because it falls exactly one week after Christmas when we’re broke and worn out from the other holidays. He never forgets it, but usually can’t make it to the store to get a present with all the other things he has to juggle. That really used to bother me, but when I stop and think about all the gifts he gives me each and every day of the year, I realize I’ve got the best present of all and I don’t have to wait til my birthday to open it. Coming home to a clean house after being sent to the fabric store to ‘buy something for myself’, his assistance in taking care of our animals without any complaints even when they’re just about the only responsibility I have any more. His wonderful understanding of my insanity as a hormonal pregnant woman and the way he caters to my every need. I couldn’t ask for more and I’m so thankful for everything I have.

I’m going to wrap this up now- the tears and snot are flowing freely because this is a very emotional subject for me, but I wanted to dedicate a special post to my wonderful man.

11 Random Things

I was reading The Art of Darkness the other day and she had been tagged in one of those random memes that goes around. She invited whoever wanted to play along and since I had some time on my hands this morning (spent too much time praising the porcelain god and now I just feel like a dish rag that’s been wrung out) so I decided to join in the fun.

1. Post these rules
2. You must post 11 random things about yourself
3. Answer the questions set for you in their post
4. Create 11 new questions for the people you tag to answer
5. Go to their blog and tell them you’ve tagged them
6. No stuff in the tagging section about you are tagged if you are reading this. You legitimately have to tag 11 people! (Yeah on this last one I’m cheating too)

So… 11 things

Following Cobweb’s lead, I met my husband when I was engaged to the bass player in his band. My now ex decided he was in love with first my now brother in law and then my husband, but since they didn’t swing that way, he suggested I date Jarell since he had a crush on me. The rest, as they say, is history.

I hate cleaning most rooms of the house, but a messy kitchen is enough to drive me to distraction and although I go to great lengths to avoid cleaning (surprisingly getting pregnant has worked the best) the kitchen is the one room that has to be neat for me to function in it. I haven’t been cooking much lately, so this obsession has fallen off a bit, but I still get in there and do dishes (a chore I hate) when they start to pile up, even though I risk spending more time huddled in a ball trying not to hurl from the smells that are multiplied 10-fold by pregnancy hormones.

I love taking my classes online, but I hate reading the textbook assignments. I can learn so much about the subject I’m studying by just searching reputable sources on the internet, and for some reason I’d rather do that. To date I’ve got a 3.67 GPA having barely cracked a book and I know for a fact that the C I got in Algebra would not have changed one bit if I had read that book.

I spent a lot of time alone as a child because we lived in the country and there weren’t many kids my own age around. Because of this, I learned to read early, and began what has become a lifelong love affair with books. I’ve always been smart, but I choose not to read books that are considered worthwhile. (the classics like Moby Dick and Pride and Prejudice) Instead I prefer to read romance novels, sci-fi and fantasy, and favorites from my teenage years. I have read Gone With the Wind several times, but prefer the sequel Scarlett. I also read Peyton Place at the age of 11 which got some raised eyebrows from our local librarian, but also earned me an adult library card so that I didn’t have to keep getting my mother’s permission to check out books from the adult section of the library.

I cannot remember a time in my life when I have not had a pet, and I am thankful for that. Whether the pet was a dog, a cat, a fish, a rat or even my goats, there have always been animals in my life and I believe I am a better person because of it.

If things go as planned, I will get to find out the gender of my baby on the 5th anniversary of my marriage to my wonderful husband and I’m even nerdy enough to be giddy over the fact that it will be a Wednesday- the same day it was when we got married.

Despite being 14 weeks pregnant, I’m at my lowest weight in 4 years (now sitting at 195 as of yesterday’s appointment) and I’m more than a little amused by this fact. I’m not losing a lot of weight, but I’m not gaining yet either and that feels funny to me.

I love music and will listen to it as often as possible, but when I don’t feel well, I inevitably get a song stuck in my head that actually makes the nausea worse than it would be without the song. This morning it was a song by Priscilla Ahn, but if I go look for the title, it will get stuck in my head again so it will have to remain a mystery. Something about not associating with fish for those of you who are actually curious.

I have 5 different tabs for my homepage on my internet- Yahoo, Facebook, Google Reader, my blog, and my school web page. This equally motivating, and a  recipe for sitting for hours catching up on everything I missed overnight when I first start my computer in the morning.

I always wanted to go on American Idol, but despite it being nearby at least 3 times that I’m aware of, I’ve never gotten the courage to try out.

I am deeply in love with the part of the country where I live despite the heat in the summer time. I also love NorCal where I grew up, and my deepest wish is that the two states were next to each other so I didn’t have to choose between the two because Missouri will always win. There is something about this place that holds me captive and I don’t mind one bit.

  1. What is your favorite candy?      I like gummy bears and jelly beans, but candy and I don’t really talk much
  2. What is your least favorite vegetable?  This one is hands down water chestnuts- their texture really bothers me
  3. Do you play a musical instrument?  Several badly- the baritone, a bit of piano, dulcimer, harmonica, and several more. We’re a musical family.
  4. What’s the worst injury you’ve ever had? I broke my toe once… knock on wood, I don’t get hurt much
  5. What’s under your bed? A platform or a secret and well hidden entrance to Narnia’s neighboring world, Walmartia- where giant smiley faces knock things down all the time
  6. If you could publish one book, what would it be about? Oh lord- I’d write stories about my cinema quality dreams that actually had a recognizable beginning, middle, and end. I have really good dreams, but I can never get all the details down before I forget.
  7. Do you believe in ghosts? yes
  8. What’s on your mouse pad? No mouse pad
  9. What are you currently reading? What to Expect when You’re Expecting and The Girl of the Limberlost
  10. If you could have any job you wanted, what would it be? I’d become a famous photographer who didn’t have to search for clients, doing fun themed photo shoots
  11. What’s your all-time favorite TV show? The Gilmore Girls as boring as that may be with the X-Files coming in a close second.

Back to school

The last 7 weeks has really flown by what with the holidays and the whole being pregnant thing. I’m so thankful to have been off for so long because I really needed the break, but now that my classes are scheduled to start back up on Monday I’m a little nervous. My two classes that I’m taking this session are Lighting, and Color Management. Both of these classes are photography classes in my major which should be exciting, but instead I’m a little worried. ‘Why worry,’ you might ask, ‘After all your supposed to be a photographer…’ But the problem is I haven’t taken a photography related class since July. Seriously- my last three courses were Art History, a web design class, and College Algebra. I’ve barely had time to pick up the camera (as evidenced by the lack of pictures lately) and somewhere along the way, this baby has stolen some basic camera knowledge from my brain. Add my lack of organization leading to one lens having gone AWOL on me and I’m a little worried about how I’ll fare in these to courses.

In all seriousness, school has taken a back burner to this baby I’m growing and I’m having a hard time taking interest in anything but that. Photography is my one true love (aside from my husband and baby) and even that is not enough to make me pick up the camera and take pictures right now. The weather is cold and gloomy, as I mentioned before my lens (my FAVORITE lens no less) has gone missing, and I just feel… blah. I’m loving lazing around the house where its warm and cozy and resting to my heart’s content. This new life inside me has taken precedence over everything else and its making some other things difficult. I’m hoping that with the transition to the second trimester, I will start to feel more energetic, but the reality is, I live in Missouri where gray is a standard color for the sky this time of year and gray makes me want to stay inside whether I’m pregnant or not.

I’m really struggling with this because along with grants, I am wracking up a sizable student loan debt with these classes and there’s no way I would want to quit at this point even if I didn’t have that looming over me. I’ve come so far to give up and be uninterested now, but I’m not sure how to get re-inspired. (or where to find my lost lens as I feel like that would make me feel a lot better and less panicked)