Friday, April 29, 2011

Well, we couldn't NOT watch it LIVE!

Yes, we spent most of the night watching the Royal Wedding. All four of us... Lowell, Kumeu, Hazelnut, and me.

Yes, we indulged in tea and homemade scones (slathered with cream cheese and jam) while witnessing history in the making.

Yes, Kumeu actually WATCHED. (For realsies. This is him actually watching...)

And yes, Kumeu shared the scones and tea.

Thoughts on the Royal Wedding:

- Kate was classy and beautiful (as per the norm), and I may or may not have shed a tear when I saw her (let's blame the pregnancy hormones shall we?).

- It was highly amusing when Prince Harry provided the only non-proper moment of the occasion by whispering something to William and having a good little chuckle (seemingly to himself) as Kate was walking down the aisle. That boy likes to have fun!

- Hot Harry and Pippa (Kate's sis who looked better than most BRIDES) would make an incredibly handsome couple... I sure hope THEY hook up!
- I loved watching the guests arrive, and I love love LOVED all the hats (well, most of the hats). I sooooo wish we could pull those off around here. Some of those little numbers could really do a great job of hiding my current pregnancy-induced forehead acne situation. Like the blue one...

Or better yet, the one that Princess Beatrice is donning...

The experience was TOTALLY worthwhile... although it DID make for an interesting 6:15am spin class (taught by Lowell)!

Now excuse me while I go have a little snooze...

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Week 19 - our little star!

STARFRUIT! How exotic! Our little star is ~6 inches long and weighs ~8.5 ounces.

Yes, I have quite the bumpity bump now, and in fact it has earned four comments all on its own. Comments such as “Is that a baby bump?” and “Is this your first?” Yes and yes…but HOW BOLD! I still haven’t worked up the nerve to outright lie to these people and deny my pregnancy (as Lowell would LOVE for me to do), but maybe next time? (Or maybe not).

Okay, I love the bump, I really do. And the swelling bosom isn’t half bad either. But the other things (acne, BACne (gross), veins popping out in legs, seizing calves, puffy-ish face, bloating, sleep loss) I could do without. This is not QUITE turning out to be the glamorous picture I had anticipated. I was looking forward to clear, glowing skin, and thick curly hair. Dream on apparently! Ah well... BRING IT!

Having a protruding belly is a fairly new experience for me. I was a gangly awkward teenager, and as I grew, I was lucky enough to remain slender (although unfortunately I have yet to completely shed the awkwardness).

(For the record... exaggerated awkwardness in the above photo...)

There was, however, a time in my life when I was a little heftier…thank you, Australia! I was fine in NZ and Thailand, but once we hit Australia, we were out of money and spent most of the month watching movies in a van while eating. We went through 5 tubs of peanut butter in four weeks, and consumed any inexpensive carbohydrate we could get our hands on (crackers, granola bars etc etc). In one month, we each gained 15 pounds, and I came home to discover that none of my clothes fit (THAT was depressing). I have since looked back at pictures, and I barely recognize myself. Well, I have now gained nearly that amount back, but it’s entirely different. For one thing, it’s mostly confined to my stomach, and also…. IT’S A BABY and not cheap carbs.

Thanks to Meghan & Merena (& me), I now have a nice little supply of maternity clothes (thanks ladies!) This past week, Merena tipped me off about a local woman who was selling her whole lot of maternity clothes on kijiji. As I would not turn down more cutesie clothes at a discounted price, I made an offer. She immediately accepted, and we made a plan to meet. I had to be at work, but I sent Mom and Lowell to meet her. Well, they waited for over an hour, emailed her 3 times, and NOTHIN! She didn’t show. I was very disappointed because it felt like Christmas had been dangled in front of my face, then snatched away. In a valiant attempt to console me, my friend Chelsea put it so eloquently, “if this lady is so mean to do this to you, she was probably mean enough to roll the clothes in dung... so you're probably better off without them!” Thanks for the perspective Chels, I DO feel better. :)

And on a couple of completely random notes…
  • Lowell often talks in his sleep, and the other night I woke up at 2am to him claiming, “We’re gonna screw up our kids… but it’s okay. It just happens.” Hmmm… thanks for the vote of confidence hun!
  • My latest indulgence has been eating bowlfuls of Oreo cookie crumbs and/or Graham cracker crumbs with a spoon. Mmmmm… delicious!

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Li'l Red Pepper

At 18 weeks, our little Hazelnut is just over 5.5 inches long, and weighs between 6.5 and 7 ounces.

I've read that women can usually start to feel their babies between weeks 16 and 22. Well folks, I think this past week was the week for us! I still can't be totally sure (as I'm learning to decipher between baby and gas), but I'm 99.9% sure that I've been feeling the baby!! I can hardly wait 'till he starts throwing me some left hooks in there and I REALLY feel 'im!

Not surprisingly, Lowell has taken to calling me ‘fatty’. I find it rather endearing (as long as it stops the second the baby slips out of the birth canal).

Names... what a task! We need to have 50 daughters to use all the girl names we (I) like, but boy names are proving to be a tad challenging. When people would willy nilly inquire around names, I would share our small list… but no longer. On a couple occasions I was met with “But will that really go with your last name?” or “I don’t love it.” Well, yes it does, and you don’t have to…WE do. The bottom line is, people will love and accept our child with whatever name we give him or her. So, we’re no longer sharing... so don’t ask!
By the way… if there are any names that you think would particularly suit a child of ours, we’re open to suggestions! Lulie or Jowell (Joel) are not options. :)

Him or her, him or her. To find out... now THAT is the question! We still haven’t decided whether or not we’ll find out the baby’s sex. Lowell wants to, but I still don’t. It’s no secret that we WANT a boy, but ultimately we would also love a girl to itty bitty bits and pieces. Here’s why we're leaning towards a boy:
1) Our sons will NOT be affected by Lowell’s eye disease… our daughters WILL.
2) The eldest child in both of our families is a boy, and we both love the idea of a big brother in our little family.
3) There are no ‘T’ grandsons in the entire extended family, let alone in Lowell’s family. It’s time we bring some ‘T’ testosterone to the mix!

That's it for week 18!

Sunday, April 10, 2011

week 17 - dragon fruit

At week 17, our little babe is ~5 inches long and weighs ~6 ounces!

The websites that I refer to for fruit/veggie ideas suggested onions and turnips for week 17… gag me. I did the grocery shopping myself this week on a mission to find a more appealing fruit or veggie. I forgot my measuring tape at home (which is vital for missions such as these), so I phoned Lowell, he looked up how long the baby was, then he measured his iphone so I could use my ipod as a measuring device. I’m sure I looked incredibly awesome holding up various produce against my ipod. I ended up with a small dragon fruit which, in my opinion, is MUCH cooler than an onion.

How am I feeling? The other day I overheard Lowell answer this on the phone: “She’s doing great. She’s into the second trimester now, so she has more energy and she’s getting fat.” Thanks Lowell… that pretty much sums it up!

Also, our little Hazelnut does NOT like it when I sneeze (or at least my body doesn’t like it). When I sneeze, my lower abdominal muscles spaz… and it hurts! The following is a scenario that has happened ON MORE THAN ONE OCCASION between 1 and 4am:
Julie: A-CHOO! OUCH OUCH! OH OUCH!! (perhaps a little more dramatic than necessary).
Lowell: (startled awake) Are you okay? What’s the matter?
Julie: I sneezed and my abs are spazzing! OUCH OUCH OOOOO OUCH!! (again, perhaps a tad dramatic).
Lowell: *groan* zzzzzzzz…

I read that starting at week 16, pregnant women are supposed to cash in on some wonderful hormonal prizes: fast growing hair and nails and smooth skin. I’d like an order of the SMOOTH SKIN please. This acne is a little out of control.

In other news, Kumeu received more mail this week than we did... seriously. This was a particular gem that he received from his doggy cousin Rotax:

Kumeu extends his gratitude to friends and family for sending birthday greetings his way. Woof!

Over and out.

Sunday, April 03, 2011

week 16 - avocado!

At week 16, our Hazelnut is the size of an avocado. He measures ~4.5 inches in length, and weighs ~3.5 ounces!

My belly has really popped, and I’ve gained 6 lbs! My bump is pretty small first thing in the morning, but progressively gets larger throughout the day (food/digestion and all the fun that comes with food/digestion).

On Friday, I received my FIRST pregnancy comment (sans my prompting). A woman who I had just met asked how far along I was. I was shocked because a) no one has ever commented without me first mentioning the pregnancy, and b) MY motto is to never EVER ask a woman if she’s pregnant no matter HOW obvious it is (cuz you just never know)… so I was surprised that someone asked ME! Anyhoo, I stared at this woman blankly for a few moments because I was quickly debating how I should respond. You see, Lowell had specifically requested that I deny being pregnant if anyone ever commented on my belly or asked me if I was expecting (you know, just to make the person feel really awkward and dumb for a moment). I thought ‘I could make Lowell really happy right now. After all, it IS appropriately April Fool’s Day. Oh, but I just met this woman and I’m going to be giving therapy to her son and seeing her regularly. But what about Lowell’s wishes? No it would just be TOO MEAN!’

I did respond appropriately this time (much to Lowell’s chagrin). Next time, Lowell…. next time (maybe).

Given my belly size, I’m kind of surprised that people aren’t grabbing my belly. When I see a pregnant lady, my initial reaction is always to stroke her belly (until I realized that not everybody likes that… so now I ask). But for the record, I now consider my belly open territory, so touch away (in a gentle and non-creepy way)!

There are so many amazing things happening developmentally with our Hazelnut every week, but apparently this week the tiny bones in his ears are forming so he can pick up our voices! Now when Lowell's away and I'm lonely, I can have lengthy conversations with both Kumeu AND our unborn child.

Now let’s talk avocados…. we LOVE avocados. We are an avocado-eatin-family! When we lived in NZ, our local produce stand sold them for CHEAP, so we developed a delicious sandwich that we ate regularly (read: daily). We call it ‘The Best Sandwich in the World” or “the NZ Sammy” or “the Kiwi Sandwich” (not to be confused with a kiwi FRUIT sandwich which hopefully doesn’t even exist).
Assembly instructions:
Fry an egg, cut up some avocado and tomato, slice some cheese, and throw it all between two slices of toast. Optional: add a layer of bacon. DEELISH!

And that's all for week 16!