Wednesday, July 28, 2010


Daring, my children are not.  That is okay, maybe I won't have a full head of gray hair before I am forty.  Howevah, it would be nice if they would start to really understand the joys of swimming.  Mia is starting to think that maybe following in her cautious brother's footsteps isn't always the best way to go.  A few weeks ago, I asked them both if they would like to take swim lessons.  I did this interrogation style - separately; so that they wouldn't influence each other.  Mia was all over it!  Of course she wanted to take a swim lesson.  Jac, not so much.

Jac did have swim lessons last year, private lessons at our pool.  Two of our neighbors came and took them with him.  We did this during Mia's naptime which worked out great, because she didn't get to see the tearing of hair and the gnashing of teeth.  Let's just say, fun was not had by all.  Jac was completely traumatized.  He learned nothing except a healthy fear of going under. 

Fast forward to this summer, he has gotten a little better.  He said 'no' to the group lessons I proposed, but is starting to come around now that he sees what Mia is learning and that she is having a lot of fun.  So in a few weeks, after school starts I am going to put him and Mia both in another lesson.  Cross your fingers that he likes it.

Mia is learning a lot.  She loves the lessons, except for one very energetic little boy who is constantly splashing her.  They speak to her in her own language and every 'lesson' is a game.  So far she has really been practicing kicks and strokes with either a kickboard or her teacher holding her up.  They also play a game where they find dive toys on the bottom of the pool.  She is by no means swimming yet, as most of the lesson is conducted in about two feet of water.   But she is building confidence and just learning how to be in the water.  It won't be long.

Here is her starfish pose that she does to float on her back and stomach. 

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Eating Strawberries

Yummy - and they won't be around for long! So eat them up.

Friday, July 23, 2010

Safety Town

Jac graduated from Safety Town today.  It was cute, they sang a little song and then they got a certificate and a sticker badge from the Officers.  It was a great program, and I am very happy that we did it.  They talked about water safety, fire safety, animal safety, car safety, bus safety, bike safety, strangers and poisons.  I think that the two things that I really appreciate from this is the bus ride they got to do, because I truly hope that Jac doesn't get anxious about getting on the bus this fall.  I also love the fact that the officers who ran the program were so personable, if Jac ever has the need of a policeman he will be comfortable talking to them.  (Where as an adult I can barely talk to an officer without freaking out, not sure why that is.)

Here is the terrible pictures that I snapped today!

Thursday, July 22, 2010

I Don't Want to Grow Up

Sometime this spring and summer I have realized that Mia isn't going to be a "baby" much longer.  I realize she isn't a baby in the real sense, she is almost four.  However, kids let go of their babyness in different ways  and at different times.  Mia, being the youngest has held on to hers and I love it.  Her status as youngest has an expiration date on it, as does her status as a three year old.  Anything goes as a three year old, you can still pretty much get away with anything.  But at four, expectations change, as they should.  She will also be a big sister this fall, that means a lot of growing up will occur in the next few months.

Some of Mia's baby traits that I love and wish she could have longer are her lisp.  I am sorry, but I love her lisp.  Mia has been talking since before she was one, but she mispronounces lots of words and she has a lisp.  Love it.  Mia likes to add a "y" to the end of a lot of things, "whoasy", "pursey", "lobstery", "Jacy", etc.  She also sucks her thumb.  I believe she will be doing this for quite awhile much to her dentist's dismay.  She said the other day that she would stop sucking her thumb when she was 13, hmm.  Mia has kept her rolly polliness a little longer than Jac did, but I see her stretching out.  She is losing her toddler belly and sometimes when I dress her in the morning it feels like there is nothing to her. 

Mia has always been my independent little girl, but with a lazy streak.  She wants privacy now when she pottys and pretty much always takes care of cleaning herself.  She has always sat on the little potty and the big potty was reserved for Jac.  I think it is easier for boys to use the big potty standing up, but for girls it is a lot to climb onto every time.  Well, the other day she threw a fit because Jac was using the big potty and she didn't want to have to wait for it.  Normally, they sit across from each other and chat when they are doing their business, but on this day she wanted nothing to do with it.

Her laziness comes when she wants to be carried everywhere.  I remember being her age and wanting to be carried, I used to pretend to be asleep.  Obviously you can't ask a sleep child to walk home by themselves!  She hasn't quite figured out that trick yet, but she asks nonstop to be carried or for "someone" to do something for her.  "I need someone to go get my blanket upstairs."  This is where I look around the room and realize that the only "someone" here is me! 

She has little things she does that remind me of babyhood.  When you pick her up, she will often keep her legs straight out waiting to be wrapped around your waist.  Have I mentioned her blanket?  She keeps her blankie within ten feet at all times.  If it is forgotten, she will often ask "Did you bring my blanket?"  Although Mia is my outgoing child she is very clingy in new situations.  She will grab my hand with both of hers to insure that I am coming with her into the lion's den.  She is a mess in a dress, the child seriously can't help but being filthy by the end of the day.  She tells an awful "knock-knock" joke.

It makes me a bit sad to think of her being ousted as the baby.  I am glad we gave her four years to be in that position.  Just like with Jac when I was pregnant with Mia, it is so hard to imagine three children while I only have two.  I know it will take adjustments on all of our parts and I plan to focus a lot of my energy on how Mia is adjusting and feeling about the new baby. 

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Did you say Boston or Austin?

My title is a nod to all of the movie quotes that my friends and husband can spew when they get fired up.  We had lots of Caddyshack, The Hangover, Stripes and the list could go on.  I unfortunately do not possess this talent.  I think Jeff makes up for my lack. 

We had a ton of fun with our friends in Boston.  I briefly gave the history behind this certain group of friends meeting up once a year in this post.  The premise is that each couple or person in the Austin Sports Couple Road Trip group would get a chance to introduce the group to the local flavor of their favorite team; including history, traditions, food, bars and of course the actual event. The first year we went to Lubbock to see a Texas Tech vs Texas game because a lot of our group was comprised of these two schools alum.  The second year we went to Chicago to see a Bears game at Soldier Field.  The third year everyone came to St. Louis to see the Cardinal's play and then this year we went to Boston to see a Red Sox game.  Next year it is a trip to Tallahassee to see FSU play.  We all committed to five years, but now there is talk of stepping up our game a bit and getting more exotic in our sporting event endeavors (Monte Carlo Formula 1 race, London for 2012 Olympics, Wisconsin for the Lumberjack Champships, ahem, so maybe they all aren't exotic).

The itinerary was lovingly built around food for the two prego women in attendance, thank you Kerrie!  Smart girl, she knew that if she wanted to keep the fat ladies singing until the end she would need some incentives, and Boston is a great food town.  Here are the restaurants we went to:

South Street Diner for Breakfast - typical breakfast fare, except for the PBR that one of our fellow diners was enjoying at 9am.  I got the feeling he was a regular, he did spin some tunes for us that morning from the jukebox, including some Sweet Home Alabama - oops, sorry Greg.

Atlantic Fish Company for Lunch on Friday - yum!  Fantastic food here.  Not so sure the chowder was award winning, but it tasted pretty good.  The crab cake and brie sammy that I got was amazing with sweet potato fries.

Ballpark food at Fenway - sorry Sox fans, but Busch stadium cannot be beat for its kosher dog.

Summer Shack in Cambridge for Lunch on Saturday - double yum for the pan seared lobster, I am pretty sure there was some plate licking for this meal.

Giacomo's South End for Dinner on Saturday - double yum again.  We had a traditional Italian meal, complete with fried calamari, fried mozzarella and lots of pasta.  I had the butternut squash ravioli, I am a sucker for squash, it was great.  And lest I forget the fabulous piece of tiramisu that I polished off all by myself!

Three Arrogant Bastards walk into a bar.......and then the punchline.  No really, we went to the bar next door to Giacomo's and the first thing that our lovely husbands ordered were three pints of "Arrogant Bastard" beer.  Hmm, somehow it fit at the time.

We also did some sight seeing, although it was really hot.  I thought for sure that we would get a little bit of a break from the heat, but it was still around 90 everyday and very humid.  I think it was a break for the Texas folks, although they are smart down there, nobody goes outside in the heat.  So I am sure it was a little different from being at home.  In the midwest, everyone stays inside in the winter, exact opposite in Texas.  You try to get from one cool place to the next as quickly as possible. 

A little bit of trivia, did you know that the Omni Parker House Hotel is the oldest running hotel in the US AND that Malcolm X and Ho Chi Minh both worked as busboys?  Also, this is the hotel that JFK proposed to Jackie and it is the home of the Boston Cream Pie, not a pie at all.  Those tricky Bostonians are always speaking in code, it's a cake!  Seriously, we heard this little schpeel no less than three times, not sure why we were always jumping on the trolley right before this famous hotel.

We were going to do the Freedom Trail, but we made a seriously good call when we hopped on one of the trolleys to ride instead of walk to some of the historic sites.  We did stop at Faneuil Hall and we also stopped at Copley Square and got a picture of Trinity Church reflected in the John Hancock Building.

The Sox lost to the Rangers on Friday night, and we had an hour or so rain delay. Seems like we get into a lot of rain on these events!  I thought I would be out of place not wearing Red Sox garb ---- negative.  Jeff informed me that the all red thing is unique to St Louis and maybe a couple of other towns.

We used the T to go everywhere, except at some point the T turns into a B, for some reason it annoyed us all, and Kerrie got very intimate with the caterpillar part on the way to the airport.

This group has come a long way in the past four years.  We have had a lot of laughs, hopefully we can keep doing it for a very long time.  See you in Tallahassee!

Monday, July 19, 2010

Week 22 and All is Well

Last weekend, Jeff and I traveled to Boston to be with a group of friends that we get together with every year.  Jeff started this little group as we were on our way out of Austin as a way to keep everyone in touch and it has worked wonderfully.  Did you you say Austin or Boston?  More on Boston later. 

The good news for me, is that my energy is coming back.  Shh, don't tell anyone because I still like to take a nap every once in a while, but I was amazed at my ability to keep up with everyone this weekend.  Or maybe, everyone was just slowing way down for me!  I haven't had a headache in over a week and no indigestion to speak of, life is good!  It took awhile, but maybe that was how it was the first time and I just thought second trimester meant that I was supposed to feel well when in reality it was middle of the second trimester.  Yes, I am in the middle of the second trimester, actually past the middle.  At almost 23 weeks (Wed I will be 23 weeks), there are only 17 more to go, basically four months.  What a four months it is going to be too.

August we will be relaxing as much as possible until my baby boy starts Kindergarten.  Then Mia will start preschool and turn 4 on the same day in September.  Jeff also has a high school reunion in September and we seem to have lots of birthdays for family coming up in September and October.  Then Halloween and fall and all those football games, I think this baby is going to be here before we know it. 

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Don't Let It Go To Your Head

I am the unfortunate mother of an oldest child who has an enormous head.  He has had this gigantic head since the day I gave birth to him, well actually it was much before that in utero.  This kid was off the charts from day one. 

Well, he has been going to a camp this week and they were all fitted with new bicycle helmets.  This is very fortuitous because his helmet that he got last year with his bike is definitely getting too small.  I asked him about his helmet when he brought it home and he said, I was the only one who got a gray helmet.  (They were color coded by size.)  Hmm, sure enough when I flipped it over it said "L" on the label.  I am glad that he was fitted professionally, I probably would have bought one too small. 

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Birthday Boy

Jeff turned 38 today (Tuesday) and he has never been better.  Age truly is just a number.  I can't wait to see what the next 38 years holds for him.  Especially on special days like today, I think about how blessed I am to have found Jeff and for the family that we have made.  We don't have the perfect marriage, maybe we will in 38 years, ours is more interesting than perfect.  It has highs and lows, ups and downs and lots of compromise (btw I hate compromise). 

But Jeff is my match and every year that he is on this earth he becomes a little more Jeffy.  That sounds a bit odd, not so eloquent, what I mean is he knows himself more and more every year; which is hard to resist.  I don't know that I have that gift, of knowing who I am and always staying true to that, sometimes I feel like I flounder around a lot.  It helps me to look over at my mate and find a man that is steady and firm; sort of like being at sea in a storm with a really good Captain.

Now for the good part!  As you get older, gifts change a bit, I think.  This year was all about the practical.  He received a pillow, because I have about had it with his complaining about his pillow.  About three times a week he accuses me of stealing his pillow and swaps with me, trust me I have never stolen his pillow.  He also asked for two pairs of shoe trees for his swanky shoes, so I gladly picked those up for him.  I did try to entertain a bit with a Tiger Tail for football season and a book that he has been wanting to read. 

All in all I think it was a good birthday.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Bump Watch

If I were famous, I believe I would have to officially tell my fans I was pregnant.  It isn't huge, that comes later.  But it is definitely there.  The bump.  I actually prefer having a bump than just looking really fat.  My bump tends to travel around to the rear a bit, instead of being a good bump and staying out front where it is supposed to be, but regardless I definitely have a bump.

I had my doctor's appointment yesterday.  It was one of the run of the mill, pee in a cup, take your blood pressure, measure the bump and step on a scale sort of appointments.  Honestly, being of "advanced maternal age", I actually haven't had too many of the run of the mill kind.  They keep taking blood, doing extra ultrasounds, etc, etc.  But this one was very quick, in and out.  My blood pressure is good, we won't talk about my weight (So far on track to match my weight gain with Jac vs with Mia, yowzer!), urine is good (I know you wanted to know that.), my bump is 21 cm which is textbook since I am 21 weeks almost 22 weeks prego, and fetal heart tones were great with a heart rate of 160 bpm. 

My next appointment is in four weeks.  I get to take the glucose test.  For those of you who forget or for those of you who haven't gotten to experience this joyous drink, you drink this nasty Orange Fanta knock off and then an hour later you get your blood taken.  Supposed to determine if you have gestational diabetes.  Actually, the orange drink isn't so bad, I have done it twice before and lived.  The blood letting.....I mean giving, drives me crazy.  I am not good at it.  But my doctor has a phlebotomist on staff and she lets me lay down while she sticks me, so it is a little better. 

What did kind of freak me out is that after my next appointment we go to the every two week schedule.  You know you have progressed and are getting nearer to D day when the appointments start coming fast and furious.  The staff already knows me on sight and by name, and soon we will be discussing gardening, the latest book we have read and what is for dinner that night.  Ready or not, here we go.

Monday, July 12, 2010

Camping 2010

Last year, at least I think it was last year, my mother and father in-law aquired a camper.  My sister and brother in-law also bought a camper.  Last year was the first year that all of Jeff's side of the family started getting together to camp.  We hadn't been camping with the kids, and really hadn't camped other than a night here or there in a very long time.  Come to find out, pretty much all kids LOVE camping.  I remember loving camping and although it is a little more difficult as an adult, I still really enjoy it. 

As a kid, you don't have to pack up all the food, you really don't care about showering, sleeping on the ground poses no problem and bug bites are there regardless if you went camping or not.  The only thing I distinctly remember hating were the bathrooms when I was a kid, and actually they don't bother me so much as an adult.  I have seen the worst of the worst in Italy and Japan, a mere state park bathroom seems homey and scented with the outdoors, more rustic than disgusting and cannot compete with a millenia old hole in the ground at the Colisseum. 

This year we ventured to Starved Rock State Park in Illinois, it is lovely.  It has 20ish miles of trails that lead to canyons and rivers and waterfalls for the kiddos to explore.  And even though it is in Illinois, it has trees!  Woods actually, think woods that breed an amazing amount of mosquitos and poison ivy.  The kids loved the woods and were able to run around behind our campsites for hours chasing each other and exploring.  We are wary of camping in Illinois simply because it is flat and who wants to camp in a field?  I think Jac and Mia said it best when they were concerned over the "corn cobs that are following us" on the way north.  Those suspicious corn fields literally follow you everywhere in Illinois!  But it was a great trade off, we got a few degrees cooler even though we had to endure the flat endless corn field of a drive. 

Sleeping on the ground and being pregnant, wasn't as bad as I thought it would be.  It would have been better if the air mattress hadn't lost air halfway through the night.  (Is it really impossible to make an air mattress that doesn't lose air, really).  But, the fact that I got to use my in-laws bathroom in the middle of the night twice made everything alright.  I was very concerned about that.  There were port-a-potties about eight campsites up, which would have been less than delightful at 2am and of course there always are the woods.  But come on, I am not above peeing on the ground in a worst case scenario, when you gotta go, you gotta go.  It is not something I strive to do, but in the middle of the pitch black with poison ivy everywhere, I think not.   Jeff, by the way, has not qualms about peeing on the ground in the middle of the night with no flashlight, go figure.

Highlights of the trip, hiking to the St Louis waterfall was great.   It was an easy hike that even I could do.  The food of course, I love camping food and must have loved it so much that I gained two pounds. (How can that happen in two days?  Hopefully it is just water weight.)  Evenings around the campfire, although the mosquitos were VERY persistant.  I have been trying to stay away from pesticides, but after being bit about 40 times in an hour we pretty much dipped ourselves in Off.  Not that it seemed to do much.  Poor Jac, he actually faired pretty well on his body, but he got two bites on his face.  His nose and eyes swelled up like someone had punched him, I kid you not it was awful.  After two dose of Benadryl he is looking more normal. 

Only one more thought to leave you with, Friday nights at a campground are Hell.  Even family camping where no alcohol is premitted (although we determined that some funny stuff was floating through the air...), people are beyond obnoxious on Friday night.  Dogs allowed to bark, dragging a full cooler down two campsites in the middle of the road, kids playing tag, Grateful Dead sing along with a portable amp (I am not joking), and the coup de grace a car alarm set off for some ten minutes.  All of this happening after 11pm.  Call me old, but I don't think I acted that badly in my heyday, and these people all had kids with them.  However, Saturday, worn out from the lack of sleep and the lovely hiking the whole entire campground was out by 10:30.  Earplugs are definitely in order for next year.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Prego Slump

I am so in a pregnancy slump.  Yeah, yeah, you've heard it before.  I try not to whine, I don't want to be a whiner, but sometimes, when I am pregnant I just can't help it.  I seem to be able to have amazing energy for a couple of days and then I hit a wall and have to sleep for 23 hours.  This was our weekend.  We did go to our friend's house for some amazing ribs and we went and saw fireworks.  Other than that, I slept, I laid around and I slept some more.  The week at mom's has completed pooped me.

So, to wallow a bit here are some of my symptoms that I am having.  And unfortunately I am smack dab in the middle of the good part.  It doesn't get better than middle of the second trimester.  It is all down hill from here until the bouncing bundle of joy starts sleeping through the night. 

As expressed earlier, I have loads of energy one day, so I use it up!  Then the next day I am completely wiped out.  I feel like an engine that stalls out at a stoplight.  Then there are the headaches.  Basically, anytime I overdo it which seems to be very difficult to guage.  I get this enormous headache, a headache that can last for a day unless I get a good nap to sleep it off.  No, I don't have preeclampsia, my blood pressure is really good right now and no swellling at all yet. 

Of course, then there are the hormones.  They are starting to rear their ugly heads again.  Not really boo hooing, more like I am pissed off at the world.  Hmm, I must be a bundle of joy to live with. 

I have mild sciatica, nothing too terrible and since I am not exercising it doesn't really hurt a lot.  No round ligament pain and really haven't experienced the return of any indegestion, just something to look forward to. 

So there you have it, one joy filled blog post.  Bah humbug. 

Monday, July 5, 2010

My Hiatus is Over

I would like to say that I took a week off of blogging on some remote island with only my thoughts and a fruity drink to occupy my time.  But alas, I kind of worked my tuckus off this past week.  Although I have to say that there were many good things to come out of this past week including some wonderful bonding time with my mom and my sister.  Here in no particular order is a recap of my fruitful week at my mom and dad's house.

Three birthday parties, two trips to the lake, one visit to my lifelong friend, four cases of jelly canned, three trips berry picking, one case of grape juice canned, one fireworks display attended, one Halloween costume completed and more chigger (or tigger bites as Jac likes to say) bites aquired than I care to count.

Here is a picture of Jac and Mia with their cousin after a successful lake visit.