Monday, August 29, 2011

Bring on fall!

It seems as though my life is kicking in to high gear now, which is a really good thing.  I have a feeling my last 6 weeks in the States are going to fly by.  Between spending three days in Chicago with Mark’s family, going to Kansas City and Branson with my family for 9 days, an overnight shopping trip with a friend, OB appointments, taking pictures, dinner dates with numerous different friends, etc – I’m going to be busy, which I absolutely love.

I’m doing much better since my “blah” post.   Thank you to those of you that left sweet comments.  I really appreciate it.  My SPD has been the best it’s been all summer I think.  I’m not in very much pain at all, besides an occasionally twinge here and there and my typical “getting out of bed” pain.  But I haven’t had my walking pain all week, which has been a welcomed relief.  I had another chiropractor appointment today and not as many things were out of alignment, so that was good.  He did deep tissue massage on my lower back/ butt, which is really kind of awkward, except this time he was talking about his stance on the war, which was brought about by him asking when my husband was coming home (to take over the massaging).  But when he massages that area it hurts SO bad.  There’s a pressure point in your glute apparently and holy Moses, that friggin HURTS when he pushed on it.  I literally couldn’t breathe when he did it and he said  wasn’t even pushing that hard.  I was telling him there was one point that REALLY hurt and he was like, “Yeah, right here” while he pushed on that point and it brought me off of the stupid table it hurt so bad.  Ouch.  But I did feel better afterwards and I don’t have to go back, so that’s good.

I also did a little “retail therapy” on  I got 3 maternity dresses that I think I can dress up or wear in casual situations, and 2 pairs of pants, and most of it was over 40% off.  I’m going to start trying to tone my arms since I think that’ll be the easiest point to target while I’m pregnant.  Maybe if I lift weights a few times a week – other than my 30+lb kid – I can tone up my arms some.  So hopefully my new clothes will fit well (and I’ll have something to wear for Mark’s homecoming) and I can get part of me (my arms) closer to where I’d like to be after baby boy is born.

I am SO ready for the fall – mainly because of the weather and because we’re closer to my husband coming home.  But fall has always been my favorite season.  This year we’ve just added a major reason.

Friday, August 26, 2011

Friday Fill-in and 5 Question Friday

  1. The first thing I think of when I get up in the morning is Abbie, since she’s usually the one waking me up by saying, “Momma, where ARE you?”
  2. Lately, I’ve been craving my husband because I haven’t seen him for almost 5 months and I’m just ready for him to be home.
  3. Whenever anyone says the word “pargy”, it reminds me of my childhood because I used that word for words I didn’t know when I was young.  But I never hear anyone say that word.  Wonder why?
  4. The happiest word I know is  HOMECOMING!!!, but we still have a ways to go.
  5. My spouse may hate it, but I absolutely love watching shows like “The Bachelor”.  But he’s a good sport and puts up with it, and even watches them with me, when he’s around.

1. Did you make any fun purchases this week?  Yep!  I bought myself a few maternity dresses to choose from when Mark gets home.  And I bought Abbie a potty chair.
2. If you could go to any musical concert, what would it be?  Zac Brown Band, Billy Joel or Elton John
3. What is your least fav/ most fav house chore?  Normally I don’t mind vacuuming but right now it hurts my belly a lot to do that.  However, I HATE doing dishes, especially in Italy because I don’t have a dishwasher.  I like doing laundry and folding it, I just don’t like putting it all away.
4. Would you prefer new appliances or clothes?  If we owed our house and didn’t live in Italy, I would say appliances.  But since we don’t owe our house and we do live in Italy, I’ll go with clothes.
5. Miracle Whip or Mayo?  Give me the real stuff please.

Thursday, August 25, 2011


Let me preface this by saying I know that I am very blessed and I know there are many people that have it much worse than I do.  (Those of you that have to endure 12+ month deployments, my heart goes out to you.)  With that being said, I try to keep this blog real and not gloss things over, so I tell it like it is.
For the past few days, I’ve been having a rough time.  I’ve been having to deal with things that I just don’t want to deal with, especially by myself.  I’ve heard many times about how you lose your filter when you’re pregnant, and I find myself having the urge to really tell people exactly what I think, no matter what the consequences are.  And I’m letting things that normally wouldn’t bug me as much, bug me a lot, thanks to my crazy hormones.
On top of that, I’ve been in a LOT of pain lately due to my SPD.  I bought a belt to wear when I’m going to be walking a lot and it has helped, but my SPD is still getting worse, and it will continue to do so until after baby boy is born (3.5 months from now..).  I’ve been going to a chiropractor and my hips/pelvis/lower back are out of alignment.  He said that my pelvic ligaments are so loose, all the surrounding muscles are having to work overtime to try to keep things in place.  He did some deep tissue massage on me and it hurt SO bad.  But he basically said that there’s nothing he can do to fix anything that’s going to last long term.  He can keep getting me back in alignment, but it won’t last more than a week or two.  Since he adjusted me on Monday, I’ve been having a lot of lower back pain, along with my pelvic pain.  Sometimes my pelvic pain is so bad, I have a really hard time getting out of bed and it takes me a good 3-5 minutes just to get to a standing position from laying down in bed.  Not exactly my idea of fun.  And being in pain most of the time is exhausting.
I miss my husband.  It’s been almost 5 months since I’ve seen him and quite honestly, I’m just tired of this.  It’s been great being at home and seeing all my friends and having all the help my parents have given me with Abbie.  But this isn’t my home.  I miss my stuff and my house and my comfort zone and my husband.  I’m just over this whole deployment and I’m ready to get back to my life.  I’m tired of writing my husband 1-6 emails a day (yes, sometimes I do actually email him that much).  I want to be able to talk to him at night before we go to sleep instead of email him.  I want to wake up in the middle of the night and know he’s beside me instead of habitually checking my email from my phone to see if he’s emailed me back yet.  (Yes, I do that multiple times a night too.)  I’m tired of sending him pages long emails telling him everything cute (or not so cute) his daughter did that day so he doesn’t feel like he’s completely out of the loop.  I want him to be able to watch her grow up in person, instead of through the emails, photos and videos I send him daily.  I’m just really ready to have my husband back.
I’ve been struggling with the weight I’m gaining with this baby.  I’ve gained about 17lbs so far, and according to my midwife today, that’s perfectly fine and right on track.  However, I feel huge.  I look back on pictures of when I was 8+ months pregnant with Abbie and I am disgusted by what I see, and I’m terrified I’m going to be looking like that again soon.  It doesn’t at all help that our squadron in Italy is basically full of very athletic, in-shape people who run marathons and work out all the time.  I see the girls talking about buying cute homecoming outfits for when the guys get home and I just feel like I’m going to show up looking like the fat girl.  I am very thankful to be pregnant and I obviously wouldn’t change that for all the cute outfits in the world, but it does bother me.  I’d love to be active, by this stupid SPD prevents me from even walking at times.  And if I do go for a walk, I usually pay for it the next day.
The thing that amazes me, is that even though my husband is 7000 miles away from me, he is still able to 100% provide for me the support I need.  He always seems to know exactly what to say to make me feel better and he makes me feel like I’m not in this completely alone, even though he’s not physically around me.  He listens to me vent, and doesn’t just give the typical guy responses, which usually involve a lot of “uh-huh’s” and “yeah’s”.  He asks questions and helps me sort through my emotions and come up with solutions and I usually feel 95% better just by talking things over with him.  I just can’t wait until I can hug him and forget that the rest of the world even exists.

A pregnancy survey

I love doing questionnaire’s so I thought this would be fun!

[About Mommy and Pregnancy]Mommy's  Name: Monica
Age When Pregnant: 28 for Abbie, 30 for this one
Current Age: 30
How Far along were you when you found out?: I think I tested at around 5 weeks.
Still with the father?: Of course
What was your first reaction when you found out you were pregnant?: Excited, shocked, nervous, excited.
How did the Father react?: Mark was very excited too, and kind of in awe
How did your parents take the news?: They were all very happy.
How did you feel about your first ultra sound?: I was very nervous that it was going to reveal something wrong. 
When I heard the heart beat for the first time?: With Abbie, it was around 6 weeks.
What month did you find out the sex of the baby?: December!
Where you happy about the sex of the baby?: Yes, very.  I had wanted a boy first, but I was so excited to find out we were having a girl.
What were your cravings?: I don’t really remember having any specific cravings with her.
Did you exercise when you were pregnant?: No, not really.  I should have, but I didn’t.
How much weight did you gain?:  Around 30lbs.
Did you get morning sickness?: No, not really.  I got queasy at times, but nothing major.  I did get migraines though.  Those weren’t fun.
Did you enjoy wearing maternity clothes?:  Not exactly.  There wasn’t much of a selection to choose from in Enid, OK, so it wasn’t all that fun.
What books did you read when you were pregnant?:  What to Expect, Girlfriend’s Guide to Pregnancy and a few others.
Did you attend any pregnancy classes like LaMaze? We went to 3-4 classes at the hospital.
Overall...Describe your pregnancy?: Besides the migraines, it was pretty easy and I loved being pregnant with Abbie.

[[About the Delivery]]How did you know you were in labor?: I went to the hospital and my OB broke my water trying to get labor started, and it pretty much worked.
Did your water break?: Not by itself.
What were you contractions like?: I honestly don’t really remember.  I remember some of them being pretty intense and being uncomfortable, but that’s about it.
How long were you in labor?: She broke my water around 8:30am and I had Abbie at 2:14am the next day, so 18 hours?
Epidural?:  Yep.  After laboring for 10+ hours and only dilating one more centimeter, I’d had enough.  They had to induce me with pitocin so I didn’t want to go through that without an epidural.
Who was in the delivery room with you?: Mark, the doula, nurses and my OB
Was it an easy delivery?:  I think I pushed for about 2 hours, but I don’t really remember it being that bad, and I remember thinking that I felt like I had the energy to keep going.  She was in there pretty good though so they had to use the vacuum, so it was kinda tough getting her out.
Did you cry during labor?:  Yes, after they’d told me I’d only dilated 1 more cm in 10+ hours of labor. 

[[About the Baby]]Baby's Full Name:
Birth Date: May 20, 2009
Time Born: 2:14am
Gender: Girl
Length: 22 inches long.
Weight: 9 pounds and 9.2 ounces
What was the first thing you said to your baby?: Honestly, I don’t remember at all.  I think I just cried.
Who visited you and the baby at the hospital? Absolutely no one besides our OB and the dr who did my epidural.
Did you breast feed?: Yep, for 13 months!
What was the first night being a parent like? Exciting, tiring.
Did you get sleep? I didn’t get much sleep for the first 4 months of her life…
When did you go home?: On the 24th.  I got released on the 23rd but Abbie had jaundice so they had to keep her under the bili-lights for another day until her biliruben count went down.  But Mark and I stayed in the hospital that night too and I got up every 2 hrs to go nurse her.

[[Present Time]]How old is your baby now?: 2 years and 3 months old
Still with the Father?: Of course
Who does your baby look like know?: I think parts of her look like me, but mostly she looks like Mark.  Everyone says they can see a mixture of us in her.
Your baby's current milestone achievement?: She can count to 14, she’s learning her left from her right, and her letters, etc. 
What’s your baby's favorite thing to do? Pretend, be outside, look at animals, go for walks, etc.
What’s your baby's favorite toy? She loves some of her stuffed animals, loves her kitchen stuff, her baby dolls and her coloring books.
What is it like being a parent?: The most exhausting, yet rewarding thing in the entire world.  I would change it for anything.
Ready for another one?: We’ll soon find out!!

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

A visit to Brookfield Zoo

My parents and I took Abbie to Brookfield Zoo last Friday.  Apparently, according to my parents, I’ve been there before, but I don’t remember it.  It’s a beautiful zoo.  If we lived close to it, I would for sure by a membership so I could take Abbie often.  She absolutely LOVES animals.
Waving at the tiger (that was sleeping).
She loves geese.  Ever since she got to feed them in Branson, she loves them.  And she always makes a funny noise and imitates them eating out of her hand every time she sees them.
Abbie was captivated by the sea lions.  She loved watching them under water and above water, especially since one of them was making a bunch of noise.  She liked imitating the noise he was making and she thought he must be hungry and that’s why he was “talking”.
We took Abbie to the dolphin show also.  I think she was a tad overwhelmed by it since a lot was going on and she wasn’t quite sure where to look, but she was very interested none the less, and she loved dancing to the music they were playing.
We also took her to feed the sting rays.  She didn’t really get to get close to any of them since they were swimming a ways away from the wall.  She’ll probably enjoy that more when she’s older.  I fed two of them though, so that was kinda fun, and kinda scary.
Next we took her to the children’s zoo.  I wish she’d gotten to pet more animals than she did, but she liked looking at them either way.
Abbie was in desperate need of a nap, so we decided to swing by the monkey house before we headed back to our hotel.  She gets such a serious expression on her face when she’s studying things, and she was definitely checking out the monkeys.  She also wormed her way in with the bigger kids to get a look at the display they were playing with.  She’s not intimidated by much.
Playing with her ear, yawning and wanting to lay down in her stroller are tell-tale signs that Abbie is tired.  But even though she was tired, she didn’t throw any fits and was very pleasant to be around.  I was surprised since that’s not always the case.
We checked out the rhino on our way out of the zoo,
and she ran through the elephant sprinkler a few times.
If you are ever in the Chicago area, I would highly recommend visiting the Brookfield Zoo.  Kids 3 and under are free and if you have a military ID, you also get in free!!

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Hot Springs and the kiddie pool

Also, while in Steamboat Springs, I wanted to check out the hot springs in the area that I’d heard of.  We drove up to Strawberry Park Hot Springs, which was about 15 mins from town, including a 2+ mile BUMPY ride on a gravel road.  My pregnant belly didn’t enjoy that too much, but the drive was beautiful.
Since we didn’t pay to go down to the springs, we couldn’t get very close to them.  But there were a few people down by them and next time I’d like to go in them, when Mark is along.  Abbie probably would have loved it, but I wasn’t sure how hot they were either.  So we stood on a hill overlooking them and took pictures.
Abbie had fun watching the chipmunks.  They are pretty darn cute.
I had fun messing around with my camera too.
Taking a break from chasing Abbie.  (Wearing one of my new “moose” shirts – which is Mark’s call sign.)
A few pictures from the drive down.
Check out the REALLY old ski lift in this photo.
I know I’ve said it a zillion times, but I could easily live in CO.  Or more specifically, right here.
Abbie is definitely her daddy’s kiddo.  She LOVES water.  She’d been asking to go to the pool since we’d gotten to Steamboat Springs.  One night I told her she could go swimming in the big jetted tub in the room and she said “No mommy.  I no want to swim in the bathtub.  I want to swim in the pool.”  I still can’t believe she can talk like that at 27 months.  She definitely knows what she wants.  So we took her to the pool and she had a blast playing with a 4 year old named Caroline there.
Steamboat was great.  I would like to see what it’s like in the winter when it’s covered in snow.  Hopefully someday we’ll be able to make it back there in the winter, although Mark’s not a big fan of skiing, so we’ll see.

Monday, August 22, 2011

Fish Creek Falls, CO

While in Steamboat Springs we took a short 1/4 mile hike down to Fish Creek Falls to check out the waterfall.  It was a beautiful hike, but it would have been much more enjoyable for me if my pelvis hadn’t been hurting so much.  They advice to not walk much (let alone up and down hills) when you have SPD, but I didn’t want to miss the waterfall, so I went.  I paid for it later though and was pretty sore.
Abbie did great on the way down, but she wanted to be carried back up the hill.  My parents carried her most of the way, which was good since there was no way I would have been able to carry her.  Yet another time I really missed Mark.