Thursday, August 21, 2014

Week 12 Update

Guess what! We had an ultrasound this week. :D

I got to see our baby and his/her heart is beating a healthy 159 beats per minute. He/she is so cute moving around in there. It's wonderful. The ultrasound technician measured our baby and dated my pregnancy 11 weeks and 5 days, making today 12 weeks and 1 day. I am so grateful that we officially have less than a week before we share the great news and I move into second trimester (thank goodness).

Good ole Photo Booth
Can you believe I've been able to keep this a secret for so long? I have been pregnant for the better part of three months and I haven't even told my parents. I usually have a hard time keeping secrets about myself. For instance, I considered titling this blog post "I Threw Up So Violently I Peed my Pants Today." ...And now you know that about me anyway. I am very impressed that I could keep my pregnancy under wraps for this long.

My official due date is now April 22, 2015. If our baby comes when he or she is due, Jeff, the baby and I will all have birthdays will all be a month apart. I like that.

I got sick yesterday. I thought it was the flu (although the nurse was concerned it could be ebola or something), but then this morning all my symptoms got slightly better; I am not running a fever, my throat is not nearly as sore as it was yesterday, my muscles aren't quite as achy, and who's to say if my three interludes with the toilet this morning were a tribute to the flu or my morning sickness or both...

Anyway. I am happy to be feeling slightly better. I had to take a sick day until I can go 24 hours with a normal temperature without the aid of medication. That's not so bad, I guess.

Here are some pictures of me and a chalkboard, because that's what you probably were most interested in seeing here. Haha, it's okay. I understand.

Here's the questionnaire for the week.

How far along? 12 weeks.
Baby is: 51 millimeters, so about an inch and 3/4. 
Total weight gain/loss? Same little fluctuations I've had all throughout my pregnancy.
Maternity clothes? No.
Stretch marks? No.
Sleep? Great.
Best moment this week? SEEING MY BABY FOR THE FIRST TIME!
Miss Anything? No. :)
Movement? No.
Food cravings? Nothing this week.
Anything making you queasy or sick? An empty stomach and whatever sickness I have this week. I eat to avoid morning sickness and I throw everything up and then my stomach is empty again and it's just a great cycle. 
Have you started to show yet? Yep, a little.
Gender? Haven't the foggiest.
Labor Signs? No.
Belly Button in or out? In.
Wedding rings on or off? On.
Happy or Moody most of the time? Happy. :) Although the other night Jeff asked me, "Do you miss the mountains?" and I actually wept. I mean, who wouldn't?!
Photo credit: Michelle Falco - Hannah, UT last weekend
Looking forward to? Telling my family we're having a baby! Also, the mashed potatoes I will make for myself this afternoon. :)

Week 9 Extras/Pregnancy Tidbits in General

All I want is brisket from Rudy's... !!!!! I just had some tonight and I am fighting myself from going back for more only an hour later. This is a legitimate craving, people! It is the only thing I want right now. What is wrong with me?

Being pregnant is all so strange. I don't like morning sickness and I am a little bit nervous about getting a preggo bump. I mean, I want one, I do, but I don't know how cute it's going to be because of my large butt, thighs, and hips. What's a girl to do? Probably not get brisket twice in one night.

I have my first doctor's appointment scheduled for a week from today! It's free, too, thankfully. I hate leeching off the government for this, but I really have to get prenatal care while I am waiting for my insurance to kick in. Do you even know how expensive an ultrasound is out of pocket? Literally hundreds of dollars. I just want to see my baby.

I also want brisket. I also want to go to the gym (miracle of miracles). I should probably go for the latter. I rarely feel even a little tempted to exercise these days. I can blame working in a daycare full time and being in the first trimester. I use to exercise almost everyday; I would swim, bike, run, do yoga, dance, take Pilates classes, and lift weights. I even did this up to about six weeks when my symptoms and job kicked in. Now I sleep almost exclusively. Not today.

See ya. I'll be at the gym working on my fitness.

Week Seven Update

Well, I am now seven weeks (and one day) pregnant! I am feeling queasy and unprepared! Jeff and I have all the regular baby stuff to get together in addition to getting a new car (since our truck can't fit a carseat), new apartment (because we only have one bedroom), and new insurance (because my parents are switching to catastrophic only and work is giving me benefits after the fourth month). Oy vey!

Why did we do this to ourselves? Also, I want to quit my job. Reaaaaal bad.

I really don't know how soon we'll see that little babe without insurance, so here's hoping for some miracles. In the meantime, I have been trying my best to eat healthy. I'm really into smoothies. I have a green smoothie most mornings and the whole nine yards. I was doing great until about three days ago, when all of a sudden, even looking at whole grains made me run for the bathroom. I seriously can't even write out what happened without feeling sick...

Here's the best part: I anticipated morning sickness would come sometime and bought some saltine crackers at the grocery store... They're whole wheat. Just let me die.

I have been good about exercise. I swim and burn calories on the stationary bike at my gym. I've gone to a couple yoga and Pilates classes, and lifted weights. I was doing all of this before I was pregnant, so I'll just keep doing it. I'd love to find a dance class somewhere.

One last little hang up: I knew precisely which diaper bag I wanted, saw it on Ebay, consulted with Jeff and sent it to my house... Back in Provo. Oops. Maybe the post office will redirect it to my apartment in Texas. Orrrr my in-laws house, where we lived for a month in transition. That's one way to announce that I'm pregnant [sigh]. Oh well. At least I've got seven and a half months to retrieve it.

As for a report, here's a helpful questionnaire!

How far along? 7 weeks
Baby is: The size of a blueberry
Total weight gain/loss? -2 pounds (I move a lot more now that I've started working full time at a day care)
Maternity clothes? Nope.
Stretch marks? Nope.
Sleep? Gimme, gimme more.
Best moment this week? Finding out one of my close work friend is due four days before me!
Miss Anything? My oat bran muffins (that I made five batches of this week) :(
Movement? No. Way too early.
Food cravings? Asian food, of any variety. This kicked in two days ago.
Anything making you queasy or sick? Whole grains, except Wheat Thins.
Have you started to show yet? No.
Gender? Won't find that out for months. I can honestly say I am equally excited about a boy or a girl!
Labor Signs? No.
Belly Button in or out? In.
Wedding rings on or off? On.
Happy or Moody most of the time? I started out reeeeeally happy and now it's definitely a combination.
Looking forward to? An ultrasound sometime soon? Telling our families. Second trimester.

Now, I have to say that I am very excited! I am a pregnant lady. That is amazing! I am so grateful for the chance to house an embryo and I am doing my darnedest to be the best pre-mom ever. Despite the bumps in the road, I know that this should be a fulfilling part of our lives.

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Saving Money + Helping New Friends

Okay, I've been wanting to post this for a while, but it feels incomplete. Basically, I took on a challenge of making all our dinners one day of the month. I LOVE FREEZER DINNERS! I have not made dinner for several days and yet we have had lasagna, chicken enchiladas (like three times), and chicken and brown rice soup. I feel totally accomplished and unexpectedly, I feel really prepared. We can participate significantly in last-minute dinner parties as well as help people in tough circumstances. I'll actually be starting over again probably today because we're giving all our meals to a family in our ward.

Listen up because this is important: a young couple in our ward had a fiasco (to say the least) two days ago. Their home burned to the ground and they didn't have renter's insurance.

If that wasn't enough, the stress of the situation put the mom into early labor... I can't even imagine how hard that would be. I keep thinking about how this means they probably don't have anything their [unexpectedly] new baby needs. This is insane.

Someone set up a Gofundme account for them, so if there is anything you can do to help, I'm sure they would really appreciate it.
Can't believe this happened to someone I know.
Click to donate!
As for freezer meals, we made five different meals and an extra:
1. Spinach Florentine Lasagna
2. Chicken Enchiladas
3. Salsa Chicken
4. Angel Hair Tetrazzini
5. Chicken and Brown Rice Soup
6. Extra shredded chicken

I used mostly trusted recipes (I.e., they came from my mother-in-law's cookbooks)

I made about 15 meals. I tripled each recipe. This was surprising cheap! When I get a second, I will post my recipes as well as my shopping list. 

I mostly post this prematurely to spread the word for this family. They could definitely use some help right now.

Friday, August 15, 2014

Why 30 is Not the New 20 and Creating Identity Capital

Today a friend shared this enlightening TED Talk on Facebook. Since I'm fairly sure my main audience is composed mostly of 20-something-year-olds, I thought this would be a valuable video.

If you aren't interested in watching, I'll add my thoughts on creating identity capital as she mentions. Meg Jay states that the 20's are not developmental downtime; they're the developmental sweet spot for defining our futures. 

I agree that now is the time to make choices that contribute to future success and happiness. I just graduated from college. I got married two years ago. I imagine my family of procreation will take off in the next few years. 

Admittedly, I don't have major long-term occupational plans for financial reasons. However, I've always had the dream of owning and operating a children's theater designed to give individuals a place to grow without pushing their moral standards. I know that in order to do this I need to build my credentials and learn about running an organization (I would like it to be non-profit). Now is the time to prepare for that, I believe. 

Jay also states "the brain caps off its second and last growth spurt in your twenties as it re-wires itself for adulthood, which means whatever it is you want to change about yourself, now is the time to change it." 

This seems pretty crucial in my opinion. I try to be intentional about how I live; I'm always setting goals and making checklists. I want to make a personality bucket list, so to speak. I did this as an early teenager. I had a list of qualities I wanted in a husband some day, but I knew we wouldn't be compatible if I lacked a lot of those qualities. I worked hard to become the kind of person I wanted to marry, and then I got married and realized I wasn't even close, haha. 

Well, I am off to make a list of the characteristics I'd like to have ten years from now (it includes rock-hard abdominal muscles). <-- Just kidding. :)

See you!

Thursday, August 14, 2014

An Overdue Review; I.e., Fireworks, Canada, and Costa Rica

I had an amazing summer. With that new diploma (no school), boxes packed for Texas, and two weeks notice underway, Jeff and I could truly relax. PS - the video is totally worth watching. I love making them and they are usually kinda cute, if I can say that about my own projects. PS PS - do what you want, but it's better in HD. xo

Claire's in-laws are grand adventurers.

Jeff's in-laws are America (and Lego) lovers.

Our friends are Canadian
(well, one of our friends is Canadian).
Brett and Julie
Mike and Ally

Stunningly endless sky-I just kept taking pictures

Highlight of the trip

Waterton, Alberta
Waterton is so gorgeous.

Jeff looks great with a beard and a baby.

This place is a-maazing. If you're not into hipster-looking hot dogs, you can get FALAFEL! Heaven.
Lake McDonald
I hope those are enough pictures. ;)

All of these vacations became favorite vacations. Stay tuned because I am tackling a project you might be interested in. Another cryptic teaser could be "how to save a butt-load of money and maximize efficiency." I will leave you with that... 

Have a great day!