26 weeks: lady cucumber

Twenty-six weeks: 2.22.12



Photo thoughts: That belly sure is growing, huh? Also, still not feeling the outdoor shots. And at least I have a teeny hint of ab muscles trying to hang on for dear life, I suppose. Just for fun, you should peek at my 26 week belly photo from Truman's pregnancy and compare it to this time. Boggles my mind.

Size of baby: An English hothouse according to BC, which I mistakenly assumed was a tomato. Thankfully I googled it and realized it's just a big cucumber, so I grabbed a plain ol' cuc from the store and called it a day. The Bump is getting lazy and has gone to the 'one fruit a month' thing now. Woah. That time already?

Cravings: Really digging Oreos this week. And diet soda of course. Still sort of grossed out by myself and my lack of restraint with food, but I'm just starving all the freaking time.  And against my better judgment I weighed myself at home and discovered I've gained 8 pounds in the past 4 weeks, bringing my grand total up to 20 pounds already. So basically, right on par with where I was at with Truman. Sigh.

What I love: Nearing the third trimester. It's starting to feel more real every day.

What I'm looking forward to the most: This sounds really odd and a little ridiculous but I'm really starting to look forward to the actual labor. Two of my besties had their babies last week and just hearing them describe their experiences the second time around is enough to get me all giddy with anticipation. No, it won't be 'fun' by any means. But it's just such a magical event and I hope my labor and delivery go smooth and quick, just like theirs. Anything will be better than my 40 hours/2 day induction with Truman. (Well, not ANYTHING, but you know what I mean).

Worries:  Still can't believe she isn't strangling herself in there with all of that crazy movement in every direction. Still hoping those super low kicks don't mean she's settling in breech for the long run. And I have my glucose screen on Thursday so I'm hoping my horrendous sweet tooth doesn't come back to bite me in the big old butt.

What is different this time around: At 26 weeks with Truman's pregnancy, I was having a mental breakdown over some jeans that shrunk in the dryer since my body was morphing at alarming speeds. I was also being a total annoying over-achiever in the nursery decorating department. And this time I don't really care that much about jeans that don't fit properly. In fact I'm wearing both of my maternity pairs just fine---both the 'too short' Old Navy ones and the slightly roomier Gap version, too. I'm not freaking out about the changes my body is making just yet because I know it's going to get a LOT weirder up in here. Also, I have a lot of work to do on her nursery but at least I've painted her walls. I feel like having 3 months left is a lot of time but in reality I know it's going to fly.

Symptoms: My back has been bugging me a bit this week, probably since I pushed it a little too much over the weekend and painted walls in our new house for a total of 14 hours. Whoops. But otherwise, I still feel really good.

Sleep: Had a few nights when I woke up really easily for no good reason, then had a little trouble falling back to sleep. But overall, I'm so freaking exhausted in the evenings that I'm bumping my bedtime up to 9 pm and sleeping like a pregnant rock.

Movement: Yes, lots. Up high, down low, in the vag....you know, like she's some sort of acrobat in there. I love it so much it hurts. 

The belly: I think it's getting more and more noticeable each day and yet, I'm not getting many stranger comments right now. Hmmm. Either people are still on the fence about whether or not I'm actually pregnant and they don't want to offend, or they just don't care that much. I did have one patient (who I haven't seen since last year at this time, but she is one of my faves) say, 'WHAT IS THAT!' when I took off my coat, pointing to my tummy. That really made me smile, like okay--I really am pregnant and people sometimes notice. Plus Nate had his first 'WOAH---your belly is huge' moment the other day when I got out from the shower. Pregnancy is just such a weird thing when you think about it---growing a human inside of another human, slowly but surely. I think sometimes I forget I'm pregnant and then look down to see this growing belly and I have to smile. Pretty amazing.  

Milestones: Baby girl is now 1 and 2/3 pounds and 14 inches long, and she is beginning to breathe in the womb. Her ears are better developed than before so I'm sure she can hear me talk to myself as I paint numerous rooms in our house. I really think she must have had a growth spurt in the past 4 weeks, too, based on my belly and my weight gain.
Amusing comments from the general public: As I said above, most people are not asking blunt questions and so I'm not offering up any answers.  

Best moment of the week: Picking a paint color for the little missy's nursery. Although it was totally painful to put down my light pink paint chips, I know I made the logical decision by picking a robin's egg blue. Since, you know, that allows free reign for TONS of pink accents throughout the room. It's been really fun and satisfying to get into the house and start working our fingers to the bone. I can't wait to bring baby girl home from the hospital and show her where she is going to grow up with her big brother!

25 weeks: a rutabaga?

Twenty-Five weeks: 2.15.12


Photo thoughts: You like the 'old school' shot in front of our green wall and clock? Yeah. Not feeling the outdoor shot today. And literally only got these two halfway decent pictures, but that is it. This project is fun but exhausting, too, man. Plus, one of the shots Nate took where I'm actually looking at the camera made me have about 4 chins. And so it begins.

Size of baby: A rutabaga according to BC and an eggplant according to TB. Have never even touched a rutabaga before but I was quite surprised to see how waxy and cool this little guy feels. Now to figure out a meal to incorporate this fruit baby...

Cravings: Eh. I'm sort of getting sick of indulging my every food desire. It's like I'm getting to that stage when I sort of gross myself out with eating EVERYTHING I please and I would really like to start monitoring what I shove in my pie hole a bit more now. I have a feeling the next weigh-in will not be pretty.

What I love: Saying that I'm due in May, and realizing that it's not so far away anymore!

What I'm looking forward to the most: Settling into our house. Yes, home projects and moving and money are definitely taking over my mind at this point. Can't wait to start on baby girl's nursery and bring her home to our new house.

Worries: I finally figured out that those super low kicks I was feeling in my cervix and butt are probably hiccups. Duh. I should know this. But then I realized that she is hiccuping almost every night and maybe even a few times per day. Then I started to worry that was too often and might mean she is having some respiratory distress in there. Not sure where I even read that, but of course I saw it somewhere and now I have chosen this to be my worry of the week. I really hate being a worrier, you know.

What is different this time around: Last time at 25 weeks I was really just starting to show, I joined a gym and worked out religiously, and I had gained 18 pounds. This time I've been showing for months, I am not working out at all, and I might be close to that 18 pound mark after being much less than my first pregnancy before this week.

Symptoms: Sometimes it's sort of painful to bend over and then stand back up. Like, my uterus doesn't like that motion and gets a little hard and weird when I dare to bend over. I've noticed myself grunting a little bit when I sit down or put on my shoes---and it seems WAY too early to be uncomfortable!

Sleep: No complaints!

Movement: Lots. Noticing a lot more kicking up high and also down low. She must be all over the place in there right now.

The belly: Pretty substantial, I'd say!

Milestones: She's 13.5 inches long and 1.5 pounds by now, laying down more fat every day. I still think being 'six months pregnant' is a pretty amazing milestone, too.

Amusing comments from the general public: Just the usual, 'You don't even look pregnant' comments that surely mean well but are highly irritating. I mean, really?

Best moment of the week: Closing on our house, successfully flying with a toddler alone...while pregnant...when he had an ear infection, and enjoying a fast but fun weekend in Missouri. Busy times around here and baby girl is along for this wild ride.

The House Hunt part 2

We are officially home owners!! We closed today, on 2.13.12, and it went very well. After the closing we picked Truman up from daycare and went over there as a family. Just walking around in OUR home feels amazing and I can't wait to start making memories there! 

So let me back up a bit and really go into detail about the actual process of buying this home. I figure a time line is the easiest way to explain how quickly this happened.

Time line of events for buying our first house:

12.22.11-- met with a local credit union to get pre-approved for a mortgage. Relatively painless. Big first step!

12.27.12-- met with a highly recommended realtor to discuss what we wanted in a house. Immediately loved our guy and became really excited about the house hunt.

12.29.12-- saw 7 homes we found online that caught our interest for cute cosmetic updates. Hated floor plans, locations, the lack of dining rooms, teeny bedrooms, etc. Cosmetics are not a priority anymore and every house had at least one deal-breaker.

12.31.12-- saw 2 more homes from online listings, compromising on the 'pretties' and focusing more on floor plan and location. No real winners here, deal-breakers in each house.

1.3.12-- saw another house we found online, knowing it was 'old-ladyfied' but a fabulous location and great floor plan. Loved a million things about it, worried about a hundred things including the amount of work it would take to fix potential major issues in this 87 year old home.

1.7.12-- second showing of our fave house, brought Tony, Lois and Truman. Got a thumbs-up from them. Still nervous about 'hidden' costs to such an old home but really excited to take the plunge. Had been on the market for 50 days without an offer, and home was vacant as the owner was elderly and her children were the sellers.

1.10.12-- made our first offer on the house! Sort of 'low ball' at 40k less than listing price, but our realtor really thought they overpriced the house and we trusted him.

1.14.12-- seller countered at 15k less than their listing price. Doh!

1.14.12-- gave our final offer, at 30k less than their listing price. Still well-below what we expected to pay for our first home, but trying to account for the repairs and upkeep on an old house.

1.16.12-- seller accepted! We either got a great deal or will still be paying a LOT for repairs and updates, depending on the inspection. Mostly worried about electrical, roof, and chimney. We watch too much HGTV and know that homes can have some scary hidden issues:)

1.21.12-- inspection completed, best case scenario for us: chimney could use a bit of work if we want to do it now, but the electrical and roof are fine. Water heater is ancient and giving off carbon monoxide, but no major issues. The inspector said, 'This is a great house' and then I almost cried. :)

1.24.12--asked sellers for some closing credits and a new water heater before closing.

1.26.12--sellers accepted our amendments!

1.28.12--appraisal came back from our lender and we are getting about 20k of instant equity in our house, considering what we are paying versus what it's worth!

2.13.12--CLOSING DAY! We are home owners!

And now, more pictures of the house. Plus my Pinterest ideas and a few projects that are on our big list of To-Dos.

Exterior of house, back yard, driveway:
So we really aren't going to do a whole lot to the outside of our house just yet. It is wooden, painted siding that the sellers must have just painted. So someday, when it chips, we might replace it with vinyl siding. And then we'd do the roof and MAYBE do all new windows. Hello, giant projects and expensiveness! But if we do manage to do all of this exterior work, I would totally go for a brand new color scheme on the house. I picture slate blue siding with white trim and a grayish roof. Side note: see our cute 'airing porch' across the top level in back? PERFECT for hanging cloth diapers to dry, and for a little table and chairs to enjoy a glass of wine on warm evenings. Oh, and Nate wants to build a back patio in the back yard and possibly fence in our property, too. So never mind---there are lots of exterior projects but none will be done anytime soon. Except maybe put in a swing set for the kiddos. This yard is HUGE compared to what we have now, so we want to live it up!

The Family Room (aka, where I think we'll spend most of our time):
This is our huge, long room right when you enter the front door--with a working, natural fireplace and tons of windows. Really hate the powder blue carpet but that is the first thing to go anyway, because the hardwood underneath is going to look amazing when we get it refinished. And you can see all of the dark woodwork that I plan to paint white as well. I realize this is a very controversial topic because this type of wood is 'very expensive' and in great shape, but it's just so dark and old to me. I want bright white trim with a modern color on the wall---like maybe a pale blue? Love the built in bookshelves and the french door and the numerous windows. I think getting rid of the heavy window treatments will make a ton of difference in this room all by itself, then you add in wood floors, painted walls and painted trim? Dreamy.

And now for Pinteresting this room...
I bought this rug for our family room. Yes, it's a trendy chevron pattern but it was a great price and will be awesome for making the room come to life:
Source: rugsusa.com via Julia on Pinterest

And this is sort of the overall color scheme I want for this room--bright throw pillows, pale blue walls, and white woodwork:

On our 'someday' list, I want to convert the fireplace to gas and make it super sleek, sort of like this one.

And we are thinking of making some storage/shelving system for the front of the room right when you walk in. I think this would be perfect!
Source: ana-white.com via Julia on Pinterest

I plan to attempt sewing some paneled curtains for all of the windows in the room, and want my mom to help me make some Roman Shades for the tiny windows above the built-in bookcases by the fireplace. Kind of like this, but not black and white, and maybe we'll just sew them for real instead of relying on Stitch Witchery:

I really want new couches, too, but that might have to wait. And I hope to recover our existing throw pillows with a new color scheme (or just buy some cheap ones, whatever is easiest).

The Dining Room:

We have radiators as our heat source (and a brand new boiler that supplies them)! Which means we don't have any forced air duct work, and we also don't have central AC. Someday we will probably add it but not right away. We've never had central AC in Wisconsin anyway, and really we only run our little window units maybe 2 weeks a summer so we plan to do that again for a little while at least. At first I hated the look of the radiators, but now I think they are sort of charming and since they are freshly painted, we'll just leave them alone. But when they do start to chip, I want to invest in some awesome wooden covers like this:

The built-in china cabinet in the dining room will stay natural wood, as will the windows above it (where I think more Roman Shades would look fabulous). But the door frames and baseboards will be painted, I'm afraid. I want a new light fixture and plan to spruce up the walls and find a cool dining room table, similar to this:

The Sunroom/playroom/office:
I love this sun room so much. It is going to be SUCH a pain to paint the french doors and all of the windows, but I think white woodwork in such a bright sunny spot is a must. Thinking of either a light yellow or maybe light green for the walls? I picture it to be something like this, which is a sunroom from a totally different house we were eyeing a while back. White wood, light walls, hardwood floors. Drool.

I am leaning towards putting our desk and computer/printers in there along with a lot of kids' toys, which will make this a multi-purpose room, for sure. But it's right off the dining room and would be a great place to store the numerous toys that are taking over our family room right now. I envision a lot of pictures being taken in this room because of all the light.

The Kitchen:
So THIS is where we will spend a big majority of our money and time, because although this is a functional kitchen it's just not very 'us'. We want all new, stainless steel appliances, new counter tops (dark-ish), and white cabinets. I'm hoping we can get the flooring guys to tear out the multiple layers of ugly linoleum and find the hardwood under there somewhere to refinish. Really dislike the wall-o-cabinets as a pantry, so I'm thinking of making that area a small desk with open shelves above it.

For the cabinets, I think we will just order new doors all together and then paint the existing bases white because I don't mind the layout and the cabinets are actually in great shape. How cool will it be to have tiny glass doors for that top row of cabinets that we have now? I think it will really break up the space and make it seem more complex, instead of just having a TON of cabinets:
Source: houzz.com via Julia on Pinterest

And this is the color scheme I love the most--wood floors, white cabinets, and gray-ish counters with aqua walls. Swoon.

Nate wants a 'real' island in there, and we definitely won't put a kitchen table in the middle of the room. But what about a fun island like this instead of a big heavy-duty one?

Expect many posts on our kitchen renovation, because we are hoping to do a lot of it ourselves and we want it done before we actually move into the house. And I personally want to be in the house by April to give us some time to settle before baby comes in May--we shall see if this order is too tall or not:)

Upstairs-- the three bedrooms and full bath:
All three bedrooms are close to the same size, but our master has a gigantic closet. And the nursery only has two windows instead of three. The woodwork is mostly white on this upper level already, thank goodness, so we'll definitely do the walls and maybe change the doors to white, too. I really dislike the look of our bathroom and a renovation is on the 3-5 year plan for sure. Just adding a radiator cover and a nice shower curtain would do wonders for it, don't you think?

Pinteresting Baby Girl's Nursery:

My beloved rug arrived the other day and I could not be more in love. It's SO pretty in person, you guys.
Source: rugsusa.com via Julia on Pinterest

And I want to paint our current Jenny Lind style crib pink, sort of like this, but not quite as bright. I'm tempted, though, to go all out on this one:)

Love the blues, aquas and pinks that I could pull from her rug into the bedding/curtains/rocker. And I just LOVE this paint color combined with the aqua accents.
Source: weheartit.com via Julia on Pinterest

Not sure if I'll do a pink crib and pink walls, though. Don't get me wrong, I am a pink freak but there's no need to go totally crazy for this little girl. Maybe aqua walls with the pink crib would be more tolerable?

Truman's room:
My boy will keep his bold striped rug, the fabric pennants mom and I made, his new bed with truck bedding, and most of his artwork. Except I want to make something similar to these two Pinterest ideas for him, too:

Source: etsy.com via Julia on Pinterest

Our Master:
I bought a new duvet cover for us from West Elm that I am loving. This is it:
Source: westelm.com via Julia on Pinterest

So I want to go with the ever-popular gray and yellow theme in our bedroom. I think I'll do a pale yellow paint on the walls, or maybe just stick to gray? But then I want to spice it up with yellow and printed throw pillows on the bed (something else to sew!!):

So overall, kind of like this but not exactly.

Yeah, really don't love our bathroom right now. Would LOVE to make it more like this one someday:
Source: hgtv.com via Julia on Pinterest

Wainscotting or beadboard, aqua, and yellow. Love. But our current bath is functional now so whatever. And the half bath on the main level is just 'fine' too. Gotta love 'someday' projects!

Other details of our new home:

Love our old door knobs, the solid doors, the great original crown molding and baseboards and door casings, the built-in bookshelves, and the hidden hardwood floors I found by pulling up the carpet. This house is going to be totally transformed just by doing our 'big three' projects before we move in: the floors, painting walls/wood trim, and the kitchen renovation. I really hope we can pull off the balancing act of decorating an old home to fit a modern family. And mostly, I can't wait to start making our own memories in a home that surely has stories to tell from past decades. It's going to be a lot of work but we are so excited to finally become home owners!

Now if only I can remain calm and collected while caring for my toddler, working part time, being pregnant, packing, moving, painting, decorating, SPENDING MONEY.....so much to do, so little time. Let's all hope it goes smoothly and we can move in before baby comes and our lives change even more. :)

The Name Game

We did it. We agreed upon a name for baby girl and neither I, nor Nate, had to file for divorce in the process. Can I get an 'AMEN'? I'm being slightly dramatic of course, but this was no easy task and I have to document the process while it's fresh. I warn you now that I'm going to be the world's biggest tease and only give you our top four names in this post, so if that annoys the heck out of you I do apologize. But think---even getting the top four is better than nothing at all, since last time with Truman we kept our lips sealed to the entire world including our friends and family. And THAT was something we vowed to skip this time around because it made us want to gouge out our eyes to ward off constant questions and detective-like tendencies from our loved ones. And so this time we have shared her name with our parents, my grandparents, and some close friends. If people straight up ask me for her name I'll probably spill the beans but I'm holding onto the surprise element for you, dear blog friends, and will refrain from announcing on Facebook as well. I'm a changed woman this time around, I tell you.

Three weeks prior to this major accomplishment by husband and wife, Nate and I drove away from our gender reveal photoshoot riding on a wave of happiness, excitement, and pure joy over seeing those darn pink balloons. I was still sort of shaking and had just gotten off the phone with my mom when Nate said, 'Well---Sidney Lorene, then, right?' Cue my face dropping to the floor for a second. You see, Sidney Lorene was our top girl pick for Truman and we both loved it....two years ago when naming our first child. But I was NOT ready to commit to such a big decision just yet. I still liked the name Sidney but I wasn't excited about it anymore, and I really wanted to find a new/fresh name that we both adored. We knew her middle name would be Lorene, though, which is pronounced--lor-EEN---like Maureen, but with an 'L.' That is my middle name, my mom's middle name, and the name of my great-grandmother so our baby girl will have a fifth generation family name attached to her. Perfect, since Truman's middle name is Anthony, which is Nate's middle name and the fourth generation on the male side of the family. Love those family names to death, so her middle name was never an issue. But her first name? Hoo boy.

And so I embarked on my quest to find the PERFECT name for baby girl. And I began to realize that my requirements were pretty specific. Not in the top 200 for names, since Truman's name is not even in the top 1000 for his birth year. Must go well with her big brother's name. Must go well with 'Lorene'. Not too cutesy, or trendy, or hard to spell. I'd like her to have a nickname, too, since I tend to shorten names automatically. I simply adore 'old' names; vintage but simple has always been my favorite type of name. But I don't want people to balk at how unique our kids' names are, not making them so out there that people think we are trying too hard to be different. I have never been a fan of 'made up' names, or ones that include crazy spellings for otherwise normal names. Of course, listing all of this out makes me realize how personal name choices can be and while I'd never name my child something in the top ten, or something with three 'Y's' in there, I know a lot of people really dig those types of names. Which is fine. But it's just not my style.

I wrote that entire paragraph just now without really mentioning the word 'we' or 'our', but with a whole lot of 'me', 'my', and 'I'. Yes, naming baby girl was something that I felt pretty selfish about at first. After all, Nate got to pick Truman's name once we narrowed it down between our two shared favorites (Grant and Truman, by the way). So I figured he'd happily oblige my wishes in getting to name our daughter, since....well, I'm the mom. Isn't that really immature and awful? But in the beginning of this name hunt I wasn't too worried about the end result because Nate and I have almost always been on the same page with big decisions in our lives. We both like the same things for the most part. So how hard could it be?

I started by fumbling through websites like The Bump, and Nymbler---which is an awesome site because you can pick one 'inspiring' name (like the name of your current child, for instance) and the site will pick a bunch of names that might fit your style. I would hit the 'find names' button hundreds of times in a row, nearly breaking my phone screen with such repetitive use. And then if I found one that I liked I'd add it to my growing list of girl names on my phone. Yes, the iPhone is a great invention, my friends.

I'd throw out a name to Nate every now and then, to gauge his reaction and see if I was falling prey to the 'looking at baby names for way too long' phenomenon. You know, when your brain doesn't even think correctly anymore and so weird names seem totally normal and fun? I somehow managed to come up with a butt load of names that I thought I liked enough to present to Nate.

Here's the 'maybe list' I created on Nameberry (another amazing site! Love it so much) which contains a TON of names that we truly considered and at least one of us really liked. I'm sure there are even more listed on my phone that never made it to that particular list. I told you, there were a lot of names tossed around in the past month.

Then there's MY list that shows all of the names that meanie Nate banished from the scene, despite my begging and pleading for him to reconsider. We've been together for nearly 1o years and I've birthed one child of his already, carrying the second like a champ. Couldn't he at least let me have my way this ONE time in our marriage? It all came to a head one night when we had narrowed down our choices to a 'top four': Alice, Sidney, Clara, and Quinn. I knew in my heart of hearts I wanted to name her Alice so badly I could taste it. I started imagining a little Alice in her new nursery, rocking my Alice to sleep, watching her grow up with her brother---and that was a dangerous choice to make, my friends. Dreaming of your daughter with a certain name that has not yet been agreed upon by your husband is like asking fate to smack you around.

Nate still wanted to name her Sidney, and he admitted that he would never be fully on board with Alice. After hearing that, and also hearing him say that one of my pins on Pinterest included a wall color that was 'a little bright', I morphed into the ugly, hormonal pregnant lady that was completely irrational. I assumed that since we weren't on the same page with girl names and now he hated my decorating tastes, we were obviously never going to see eye-to-eye on these matters and the whole world was ending. Yes. It was that ugly. And thank goodness my husband didn't run and hide from his psychotic pregnant hormone'd up wife.

So we took a nice long break from the baby name game. I told Nate to come up with some of his own ideas and when he did, I really disliked every one of them, so we had to take another break in the discussions. But then one night I was cruising around Nameberry again and found a list of classic girl names that aren't boring and then cool vintage names and their list of vintage names for girls. YES. These was getting me somewhere and I was inspired to start totally fresh. I complied a list of nine 'new' names and started feeling excited about naming baby girl again, instead of just feeling jaded and worn down.

I was honestly scared to even tell Nate I had a new list, but when I did he was all over it and wanted to hear them right away. It was pretty cute when he said, 'I bet there is one on there that I'll really like.' Meaning: I am going to settle for one of these damn names because you are driving me batty with all of these ridiculous lists. Here the list that I love and Nate did not hate, thus streamlining our final choices down to these precious names. I couldn't believe it when he said 'these aren't so bad at all'. And then we narrowed it down to four.

Penelope Lorene. Cecelia Lorene. Beatrice Lorene. Or Reese Lorene.

I love them all so much that I sort of want three more daughters so that they can each claim these names. But not really because I'm sure my mind would change by the next baby and we'd be back to the same ol' drama of naming another baby.

After we talked about our top four, it came down to two from there. And then just one. THE one that we both agreed was the best. And we are not looking back because that is her name. It feels so good to call her by name, to say her name out loud, and to try and force the name out of Truman's sweet little mouth. I immediately felt more bonded to baby girl after our gender reveal and now that she has a name, that bond has grown even deeper. I think Nate feels the same way and we are both so excited to meet this little lady (with a name!!) in May.

And that is my story about the name game drama. Pregnancy hormones make everything a lot harder, don't they?

24 weeks: egg planted

Twenty-Four weeks: 2.8.12







Photo thoughts:
I was really happy with these shots Nate took this week. So many cute ones of Truman and I look half-way decent/awake. And thus, I had to edit a lot more than usual.

Size of baby: An ear of corn according to BC, which there was a 0% chance of me finding in the stores in February. Or a papaya according to TB, which is totally non-existent up here this time of year, too. And so? We got creative again, but this time I picked my own food of choice. An eggplant! Which is what TB says I'll be next week (and then for the following 3 weeks after that). Isn't she pretty?

Cravings: Soda. Nutella (first time ever having it = obsessed). Oranges. BLT sandwiches. All sweets under the sun. And even my PB&J sandwich tasted SO good the other day. Everything tastes amazing and I just can't stop eating right now. Love it. This was the first week that I was honestly craving a cold beer at dinner---it's really not fair when Nate indulges in the bubbly goodness right in front of me. Maybe someday I'll be zen enough to have a bit myself...

What I love: Indulging in all of my mouth's desires. Hitting the viability day milestone. And being 6 months pregnant.

What I'm looking forward to the most: Starting to paint her crib. Our hardcore paint sprayer arrived in the mail today and I am dying to get my hands on that puppy.

Worries: I've been hearing a lot of stories about pre-term labor lately, and even though hitting 24 weeks means baby girl would stand a chance outside my womb right now, I really REALLY don't want to experience that if possible (obvi). I'm also convinced that she will be breech when it's time to birth her. No idea why I believe that, but I just do.

What is different this time around: Oh, you know. Just being a HUGE slacker compared to the Julia of 24 weeks past. Since last time I was busy painting canvas prints by hand, buying even MORE furniture for Truman's nursery, and being a total over-achiever in every way possible. But at least my belly bump is over-achieving this time because holy crap, my bump was still so tiny back then! It's funny that I forced myself to wear maternity shirts at 24 weeks last time b/c I felt I deserved it, not because regular shirts didn't fit anymore. Ha. Baby girl is definitely forcing my body to be 'more pregnant looking' this time around. Even if I can't tell her that the nursery was finished by the third trimester, I will tell her that she beat her brother in the bump department.

Symptoms: Still with odd tight ute feelings. Sometimes my back hurts when I lay or sit down. And I'm definitely getting more winded coming up our stairs.

Sleep: Fine. Passing out pretty easily, still super congested while sleeping, and then a little more tired during the day this week. But overall I have no complaints on my BFF sleep.

Movement: She's a soccer player, that one! I'm starting to notice a pattern for her most active times (about 10 am, 3 pm, and 10 pm) and I'm trying to get Truman to feel her from the outside. So far no such luck, since both kids have pretty short attention spans right now:)

The belly: It's big/small again. I get a lot of comments on how 'small' I look in person and yet there are some days when I look down and think, 'Holy hell----that is one big baby belly already!'

Milestones: Viability day!! She's gained 4 ounces since last week and is over a pound total. Her brain, taste buds, and lungs are developing like crazy right now, too. Go, baby girl, go!

Amusing comments from the general public: Nothing too awful this week really. I stopped by the office at work one day and 50% of the people who saw me said I am sooooooo tiny and the other 50% were able to tell I'm actually pregnant without me mentioning it first. So weird.

Best moment of the week: Finally choosing a name for our baby girl!! This was HUGE, you guys, because I really thought she'd be the first person in history without a name. A separate post to follow (but don't get too excited, I'm not going to flat out tell you her name, sillies, but maybe I'll give you the top four) to document the lengthy process of naming our second child. Hint: we are still married after the drama and this is very good news. :)

Twenty-Three months

My biggie boy is 'going to be two next month', you guys. That is how I answer the question, 'How old is he?' now. It doesn't make my heart ache quite as much to think about my child being two years old, because (wait for it.....) this is just such a FUN age! Should I rename my blog 'My Life in SUCH A FUN AGE!' ??

(this is how he poses for most pictures now---not a true smile in many photos anymore, but more like an intense gaze for the camera. And then he demands to see the shot with his own eyes, to see if he approves.)



Okay, tons of firsts in January for our big guy.

1. Switched from rear-facing to forward-facing at 22.5 months. I really wanted to make it to two years but darn it, I just could not handle my child being in the pike position with his long legs halfway up the back seat. He's never really minded it, and usually he just crosses his legs or let them dangle off the sides of the seat, but with his warm weather gear he just couldn't reposition his little legs well enough. I'm not sure how tall he is, but I guess him to be around 35 inches and he's in all 3T clothes now so yes--he is a taller than average 23 month old. Plus, my back is killing me from lifting him up and into the seat, then trying to get his giant body situated with a teeny amount of available space. Exhibit A:


And after the big switch! Ahhh, legs aren't numb anymore!

Don't worry, I was still incredibly freaked out about this much-needed change because I know how much safer rear-facing is. It's one of those things that would have been hard if we did make it to two, or even beyond, so I'm just pretending to be really cool about it.

(speaking of being really cool...poser)

2. Switched to a big boy bed on 1.22.12!! This was a HUGE mental battle for me (again! I'm a headcase!) but it turns out that it was really not a big deal at all. I decided it was time because T was seriously banging his head into every single part of the tiny crib at night and it was giving me a headache to hear that. Plus he's so heavy the crib was squeaking as he moved and I just couldn't imagine that those two things weren't affecting his sleep at least a little bit. It will be nice not to buy another crib for baby girl, and now Truman will have some time to adjust to this big change before our move and before baby comes.

We brought down Nate's old twin bunk bed from the attic, and used the side rail that went along the top bunk to make this 'safer' and less scary (for me). And I got really into buying Truman new truck sheets from Olive Kids, along with the amazing excavator pillow, and I found a regular old 'quilt' comforter at Target to complete the bedding. Oh, and a set of 'back up' sheets that are dinosaurs---and *almost* as cute as the pricey trucks. I'm mostly excited that we can re-use his striped nursery rug in his new big boy room and keep the same color scheme while changing it up slightly with the trucks.






As for how the transition went....overall it was pretty painless! The first night Truman didn't fall asleep for 2 hours and I was totally second-guessing our decision. But he lasted all night without waking after he did finally fall asleep and bedtime was totally normal again by about the third night. He loves his big boy bed and will to show it off to anyone who will oblige him. Plus, there is nothing better than laying in bed next to my boy, reading him books and singing to him before he falls asleep. He has yet to crawl out on his own because we were really firm with him about mommy and daddy being the only ones who could get him out of the bed. So far he's listening to that statement (knock on wood!) and hasn't gotten out of bed without us!

3. First haircut on 1.21.12. Separate post for details. But one more picture for good measure:)

Other happenings for our 'almost two year old':

-Right in the beginning of the month, I was looking this picture I had taken of T in the bathtub and noticed something rather shocking:
Um, he has his two bottom molars all of a sudden! I'd say they are about halfway through his gums now and must have been part of the reason he liked to wake at 4 am for a few weeks! Hallelujah for being nearly done with all teething. Now if only the top 'two year molars' would start their way down...no sign in sight, not even through my view finder on the camera:)

-No more blankets/lovies at daycare! This was another big step because for a few weeks, the child would not let 'Douglas the lamb', 'Monkey' and 'Green blankie' out of his sight. All of a sudden he just didn't need them anymore and he's doing great at daycare again. Whew.

-Truman is completely obsessed with colors. He can seriously correctly identify the following: orange, yellow, green, blue, purple, pink, black and brown. Not so into 'red' or 'gray' or 'white' but everything else is spot-on. The other day I was opening up our peanut butter jar and he said, 'ooooh, brown!'. Say, what? And we talk about the colored stoplights in the car, the colors of his Tot Clock, and the colors we are wearing to the point that it's almost ridiculous. I personally think it's pretty insane that he can name colors before the age of two, but maybe that is actually normal? It just seems advanced to me:)

-And then there is the counting. He is getting to know his numbers and I believe his favorite one must be the number 'two'. Because there are about four number 'twos' when counting to ten, didn't you know? Observe the cuteness.

-Also, he is really into the color pink lately which makes this pink-loving-mommy pretty happy:) He will request to watch our 'pink boon' (pink balloon) video quite often and when we heard Christina Perri's song on the radio the other day, he just smiled and said, 'Oh. Pink.'

-Which brings up the video I took of him the week before our balloon reveal. Is he the cutest soon-to-be-big-bro or what? A little confused yes, but cute.

-And one more thing about the baby: in the midst of our 'naming baby girl' dilemma, I decided to get Truman's opinion on the matter. I'll ask him if he likes this certain name and he'll always say, 'mmmm, yeah!' So then I decided to go for the open-ended question, and asked him, 'Truman, what do you want to name baby sister?' At first he took no time at all to say, 'Garbage Truck' which was not exactly on our list of options. But then the next time I asked him about it he thought long and hard and said, 'Two.....Green....Balls'. Huh. It's unique, yes?


-I also asked him who his best friend is one night at dinner, and he patted his own chest saying, 'Tru Tru'. A little self-absorbed? Then I asked who his second-best friend is, and almost cried when he said, 'Ya Ya.' Which is Lois, Nate's mom. So sweet! I don't think he has a clue what 'best friend' even means, but that is one for his baby book!

(Look out below--first time really sledding this year! Hands in the air, whoo hoo!)

-We are really into a great routine with Truman at the moment, and I know that could change in about two minutes so I don't want to jinx it. But he's going to bed fairly easily, waking at about 5:30 each day (whatever. We are used to that one by now), doing great at daycare, taking awesome 3 hour naps, is so much fun at home with us, and does a good job of entertaining himself a bit more lately, too. He'll definitely get frustrated if we don't know what he's trying to tell us and somedays are total whine-a-thons that seem to put everyone in a bad mood. But for the most part he's able to communicate exactly what he wants (and of course he wants that item RIGHT NOW or he will pitch a fit) and he has such a great sense of humor. My little guy is so loving and thoughtful and observant that a lot of people comment on how well-behaved he is in public. Of course, he saves his naughty times for Nate and I behind closed doors, but he really is a great kid. I pray that number two is not our payback for having a fairly easy number one.


Things Truman loves to do:

-imitate/make fun of me, by sighing really loudly in an exasperated fashion if I ask him to do anything. For instance, when T asks me to watch You Tube truck videos I guess I usually sigh as a response, knowing it will be difficult to find something that actually entertains him these days. So now, when he asks to watch the videos he will also sigh REALLY dramatically before I do it myself, beating me to the punch. Is that hilarious or what?

-watch Thomas the Train, Chuggington, Sesame Street (specifically Elmo), or Fireman Sam On Demand. I prefer Thomas because his episodes are only 10 minutes long, and Truman's attention span is about 5 minutes at this point:)

-slamming basketballs/soccerballs/any balls through his hoop. Kicking balls, throwing things, and a rough and tough boy is also a favorite hobby of his. Oh, and his garbage truck is still the cat's meow and we play with it for hours each day (at least it seems that long to me).

-coloring with markers, forcing me to draw garbage trucks and Elmo--both no small tasks, if you ask me. Watching for the garbage truck on trash day is probably the highlight of his week. He is seriously borderline obsessive about garbage trucks.

-imaginative play with his toys. This is sort of new for him, but he has a toy dinosaur that 'drinks' from our ottoman and Truman will feed his monkey blanket some snacks if the mood is right. He has a stuffed dog toy that looks just like Henry, and this 'ga ga' loves to give and get kisses from other toys. I love watching T's little brain work!

-helping us bake, make coffee, playing in the sink, climbing on chairs, jumping (with both feet clearing the ground now!), and running everywhere---no longer walking at all.

-not so into the potty anymore. It goes in spurts, a few weeks he is all about peeing in the potty and then he is NOT into it anymore. Whatever.

We love you so much, Truman---you muscle man, you!
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