Sunday, February 24, 2013

week 32 - exercise ball stand

Extra points if you would have known what the heck that random object was without me telling you! Week 32, and this tiny fetus child is the size of an exercise ball stand- between 16 and 17 inches long, and super light still: ~2.5-3.5 lbs.

I'm going to be short and sweet here.

During most of our University years, it was Lowell, Carlynne and Julie... the three amigos. For that reason, it wasn't weird when just the three of us embarked on a mini babymoon (and belated birthday celebration trip) to VEGAS. We missed dear Daniel... but we still had a rootin tootin good time. More on THAT little adventure SOON.

But for now... adios, cheerio, ciao, and good day.

That may have been the most brief post in the history of blog posts.

Oh, and don't forget to put a guess in for our baby prediction contest. We have some super fun entries so far... 60% of you have predicted a girl, and the average guess for time is April 18 at 10:55am! Click here: Baby Prediction Contest.

Sunday, February 17, 2013

week 31- snowboard binding

Week 31 and baby #2 is about the length of a snowboard binding (with strap)... just over 16 inches! When I did my Fraser pregnancy updates, I always included what was going on at this stage of development with the babe (but haven't really been doing it this time around for some reason). I took a gander at my sources, and apparently all five senses are now in working order, and brain/nerve development is happening like crazy. Also, mentioned that being out of breath is normal for this stage of pregnancy, and out of breath I most certainly am. There are steps between our side entry and kitchen, and I have to sit down and catch my breath for a sec when I somehow manage to stumble up the THREE STEPS into the kitchen... kind of makes me feel pathetic, so I'm glad it's normal!

1. Valentine's Day!

Fraser's V-Day shot...

And Fraser's V-Day card...

(Don't be offended if you didn't get one. We only ordered enough for grandparents, cousins, two best boy buds, and two closest gal pals.)

Now for Valentine's evening. Nana & Papa offered to take Fraselnut for a sleepover leaving us free to paint the town red. Buh-bye love bug!

As it was Lowell and my 10th Dateversary, we celebrated in style by attending the Red Dress Gala. When I called for tickets, I asked if the women were ACTUALLY meant to wear red dresses... and indeed they were. I mentioned that perhaps that would be a problem as I'm super pregnant and do not own such maternity wear. The nice lady good naturedly told me that I'd still be welcome but perhaps I could accessorize red. So, accessorize I did. I wore a black dress (thank you, Sheena), and recalled in the deep dark recesses of my brain that my friend, Tina, had some hot red boots. Brilliant. Thanks ladies. Throw on some red lips, and I was officially accessorized.

(PS- I love how strangely nervous Lowell looks in this picture... makes me think of an awkward prom photo. hehe)

At the event (at which there were 400 people), the lady I spoke to on the phone approached me and said, "You must be Julie!" When I confirmed her suspicion, she went on, "I knew because you're the one without a red dress!" And folks, I was the only woman (out of at least 200 women) that wasn't wearing a red dress. LITERALLY.

Okay, well that was sort of a lie I just told for dramatic effect. I DID spot a purple dress, a gray dress, and even another blonde pregnant woman in a black dress (my kindred spirit, obviously). But other than those three... I was literally the only one NOT in a red dress (see? totally lost dramatic effect with that admission).

Anyhoo, it was a lovely evening with delicious food, hilarious speakers, a talented band (a local group of ER docs who call themselves DNR (hehe)), and a photo booth to boot.

2. Compared to my 24-week pregnant twin, I feel like the largest laziest slug there ever was. She's all in nesting mode: stensilling bathroom walls, sewing linen tea towels, cleaning out every drawer and cupboard, creating artful masterpieces etc... all this on top of working nearly full time. I, on the other hand, can not seem to peel my enlarged rear off the couch after Fraser's 7:30 bed time. I finally manage to drag it to bed, but the little jaunt down the hallway to our bedroom is the extent of my night time activity. Hopefully some day before baby #2 is born, I'll be bit by a radioactive spider and tackle my to-do list. Here's a shot of Carlynne's bathroom wall. It looks amazing, yes, and this little bathroom project of hers is still a work in progress...

3. I received multiple comments this past week about how I am suddenly noticeably larger than the previous week. Like, not just one comment... MULTIPLE comments. And not just a larger tummy... a larger EVERYTHING. To be honest, however, I don't really mind the comments because I DO feel larger and it's nice to know that I'm not going crazy. Also, it's an acceptable largeness given my current state. Say something like that to me in the weeks/months/years following the birth of this babe, and you may find yourself with a black eye or two... but for now I'm cool.

4. Play dates are fun. Fraser had a busy week!



 And Elliot...

5. Lowell, Fraser and I headed out to Orion on Saturday to spend the day with Julie Anne and Ryan. It was a relaxing time of food, games, walks, conversation, and cuteness...

 Only in Orion...

Don't worry- even in the tiny desolate hamlet of Orion, Fraser was still closely supervised whilst running freely down the highway...

Pregnant Julie squared. Julie Anne at 25 weeks, Julie Renee (aka me) at 31 weeks...

6. Don't you forget about Baby Prediction Contest 2.0!! More deets here. Remember... there's a PRIZE up for grabs!!

Friday, February 15, 2013

Baby Prediction Contest 2.0!

Today marks week 31 of my pregnancy which means we are officially in the single digit week countdown. And folks... it. is. on.

Baby Prediction Contest 2.0 is here, and there's a GREAT prize up for grabs. A $50 gift card for.... WHATEVER THE HECK YOU WANT! We were going to offer $50 for Starbucks (because let's be honest... that's what I would choose), but we realize that reader interest is vast and varied. Also, I contacted Starbucks and they weren't willing to donate (yes, I was disappointed too), so we began thinking outside the box. Itunes? Sport Chek? Dollarama? You name it, it's yours.

So, click the link. Enter your name. Make your guesses (date, time, gender, name, length, weight, hair/eye colour etc). Press submit. Done.

The big kahoona of a prize goes to the person who guesses the closest date/time AND the appropriate gender. But remember... you should probably answer ALL the questions because we may have a hankering to toss out some extra prizes (as we did last time).

The link: Baby Prediction Contest 2.0

HINT: Due date April 20, 2013.

Contest closes April 1, 2013.

Now... hop to it!

Thursday, February 14, 2013

ONE DECADE with my stud muffin!

10 years ago today, Lowell asked me out and we began our glorious journey together. TEN YEARS???!!!?! Normally this could be a rather mundane detail... but don't forget that LOWELL was involved in this asking out business. That means, it was anything but humdrum. For starters, he secretly asked my parents' permission... MY PARENTS' PERMISSION! To DATE me!! As most of you know, Lowell is legally blind, and knowing that his visual impairment would inevitably effect his future wife and family, it was important to him to consult the potential in-laws first. Awwwww. He's always had such depth, sensitivity, and foresight.

My parents were thrilled and gave their approval without hesitation. They knew Lowell before I did, and they had no doubt that he would make a quality son-in-law should the relationship result in marriage. (In fact, I'm still convinced that my parents actually paid Lowell to date me!)

Okay, moving right along.

It was Valentines Day, and we were planning on hanging out. Yes, I know I know... we weren't dating, but planning on spending Valentines evening together- there's everyone's first clue something was about to happen.

We had planned to have supper at his house then see a play at the University with some friends. When I first arrived at Lowell's place, he showed me a book that he won. SIDE STORY! A couple months earlier while we were walking around the university, there was a lady manning a table of kiddie books. She had this one book called 'The Amazing Magic Fact Machine".

Each set of pages included several sciencey questions formed in a circle on the left side, and answers (also in a circle) on the right side. You put the accompanying hand in the questions circle, and spin it to select your question. You then place the hand in the centre of the answer circle, and it finds the right answer. Every. Time. Magic I tell you!

Anyhoo, we both entered our names in a draw to win the book, and win it he did. Only he didn't share that interesting tid bit with me until this particular Valentines evening.

We were flipping through the pages together learning some scientific facts, when he suggested I take a gander at the last page. It was a page made by Lowell to ask me out! The question side said, "Julie will you go out with me?" Well, actually, in his editing process, he overlooked the fact that the word 'go' was missing, so it actually read, "Julie, will you out with me?" His own little instructions then specified that I turn the hand to my answer ("yes", "no" or "gotta think") while he looked away, then Lowell would put the hand on the other side to reveal my answer. If I said "yes", it pointed to a picture of him giving a thumbs up; "no" was a devastated look; "gotta think" was one thumb up and one thumb down.

Well, obviously I chose yes!

But the evening was not over.

He then escorted me downstairs where the basement was candle-lit, Celine (MY FAVE) was playing, and my favourite foods awaited: pizza (in a heart shape to boot), salad, and apple slices. We then saw a play at the university (which was somewhat of a bust but I didn't care because of the handsome man beside me whom I could now call my BOYFRIEND). We then went back to his place and watched Princess Diaries (which is one of my classic favourites hehe).

We don't have a single picture of the occasion, but it's okay because the evening is blazed into my memory.

Here are some pictures of us in the EARLY early days. Look at these young fresh (and dorky) faces of barely 20!

 What my Mom remembers about the occasion is that he asked their permission, they heartily gave it to him, he asked me out in a ridiculously sweet way, then took off on an American road trip with his friend Dave while I made him an apron. Here's Lowell in the apron I made him- the floral side is for the days he's feeling more feminine, and the denim side is for his more masculine days...

I can't believe that 10 years has gone by. A LOT has happened in those years- marriage, masters degrees/careers, traveling, home-ownership, a doggy, almost two kids, and countless random crazy antics. To detail all that we've done in the past 10 years would require an encyclopedia-length novel. Or two. Have I mentioned the duct tape suits? Or cookies the size of large pizzas? Or the SPAM museum? Words do not exist to describe just how much I love this guy. We've had so much fun over the past 10 years, and I can hardly wait to see what the next 10 brings!

Sunday, February 10, 2013

week 30 - camelbak

30 weeks = 3/4 there. Eesh! This small child is between 15 and 16 inches long and kicking/moving LIKE CRAZY. Like, more than Fraser ever did if memory serves correct. I'm still feeling pretty great for the most part, although I have hit that glorious (sarcasm) stage where the weight has expanded beyond my belly. I have a little extra of EVERYTHING going on here. Not exactly visually appealing, but also not permanent (knock on wood). Mmmmm... cellulite and stretch marks = hotness.

1. Fun with Fraser and Daddy...

(There are more of this adorable pair where those came from, but I'd sort of be stepping on the toes of Project 365 if I posted more!)

2. This week, I spent an afternoon with three 1-year olds: Fraser, Nico, & Liam. It was more of a napping party than anything as all three of them slept for 2-3 hours (at the SAME TIME), but they still had a chance to be cute together...

They all enjoyed lounging in Fraser's comfy chair... I'm totally investing in more of these seats so there can be some adorable simultaneous lounging action. Also, it was a 'pants optional' event...

I do love those boys. And I also love that they all have very similar schedules (hence the gloriously relaxing napping party)!

3. My sis Shareen turned 32! Along with my parentals, we got to celebrate with her all weekend-  we went out for brekky, took in a play, hit up the dog run, and had a yummy supper complete with ice cream cake...

Fraser enjoyed the ice cream cake too (obv)... and even used a spoon (appropriately!) for every last bite...


By the way, I snapped the following picture during our breakfast outing to prove that I come by my love of Nutella honestly. This is my Mom eating a bowl of Nutella with a spoon. At one point, my Dad- thinking she was done- picked up the bowl to pass to the waitress, and Mom rather aggressively snatched it back. This is for real, folks...

4. Stay tuned as Baby Prediction Contest 2.0 is coming SOON!

Sunday, February 03, 2013

week 29 - giant weight

Week 29, and wee Kiwi is in and around 15 inches long. As for that expression on my face- don't think for a second that I'm faking it. I am in genuine pain holding all 50 lbs of that ridiculous weight. My intense effort is evidenced by the veins popping out of my hand, and if there was an audio track accompanying this photo, you would hear through my gritted teeth between groans and gasps for air, "LOWELL! Did you take the flingin flangin picture? HURRY UP ALREADY! I'm DYING here!" (not at all overdramatic).

Let's chat about Kiwi for a sec. And cranberry ice (which is basically frozen juice- a yummy recipe courtesy of Nathania). This babe looooooves cranberry ice. Or perhaps hates it? Whatever the case, it never fails to get a reaction from him/her. Front flips, back flips, kick boxing, punching, jumping jacks... there may even be a soccer ball or two in there. I'm just saying... this cranberry ice stuff is magical. And THAT'S why I eat it seven times a day.

1. Last weekend, we accompanied Mandy & Graham to Waterton for some snowshoeing good times. Fraser loves Uncle G-Reim and Auntie Mandy, and we hit a beautiful day- snowy AND sunny!

2. On January first, I unofficially/informally began Project 365 (taking one picture a day for the entire year). I was a little hesitant to completely commit, so I decided that I'd only share the pictures if I had one for each day in January... which I do (yay me).  I had initially hoped that each picture would be totally awesome (you know- good quality/artistic bla bla bla), but that much hasn't happened. Most of the photos are phone-captured moments of life. In particular- life with a Fraselnut. Et voila...

New Year's Day sunset gallivant with the poochies.
A yogurt self-feed.
Sunrise jaunt.
Fraser with two of his favourite people: Auntie Chels & Nico (aka "Dago").
25 weeks pregnant and 4 inches off of full term size with Fraser.
A little frightened.

Beautiful snow-free coulee... in JANUARY!
G grandbabies!

Just another drive to work (lovely).

First time on the slide!
First big snowfall of 2013
(and not impressed that mama didn't put mittens on him)!
Auntie Shareen makes the BEST hats!
First time on skis!

Chin ups with Daddy... a common occurrence in this household!

A sicky day at home cuddling with Mommy.
Throwing the ball for puppy.

Fraser loves books... even Mommy's old fashioned Christian romance novels. :)

Sharing his books with Hope.
BFFs on skis = adorbs.

Much needed haircut #2.

Fraser is such a big help at the grocery store...
especially when giant boxes of mini wheats are involved.

Fraser watching our big tree getting a haircut.

Puppy Kumeu = comfy lounge chair.

Gender reveal Skype chat with Dan & Carlynne.... PINK PINK PINK!!
(And PS. I'm jumping up and down with glee!)

The hat's ALMOST as cute as the boy!

A little coulee romp with the kidlets.
Thank you, chinooks, for the beautiful January weather.
Oh so apologetic for pooping in the tub.

Waterton snowshoeing fun with Mandy & Graham.
Believe you me, this kind of hanky panky will not fly when these two are teenagers!

Ready to rip into the Ikea boxes and "help"!
First beater licking experience (and definitely not the last)!

Brand new comfy lounger for Fraser!
Phewf! Did you make it this far? That was a lot of pictures... but hey. I'm already 1/12th done!

See y'all next week!