Sunday, November 24, 2013

New Normal

This week was the beginning of a new normal for us. I ended up not having school all week due to the F-3 tornado that hit our little school town on Sunday afternoon.

We have over 30 families who no longer have a house at all. Over 200 homes were damaged in some way. This is our new normal. Kids who have lived in the same house their whole lives are now homeless. Kids that were looking forward to Thanksgiving and Christmas are now worried if they will have any clothes to wear to school on Monday. 

I felt so helpless Monday morning watching news account after news account about the destruction in the town. Being 8 months pregnant though was keeping me from being accepted as a volunteer for the Red Cross. Luckily another teacher mentioned how many parents didn't know what to do with their kids as they tried to put their lives back together. 

We were able to set up a free daycare at a local church with free food from the Red Cross and donors. We had over 25 kids each day and volunteers and teachers running the child care. It. Was. Awesome. Being able to see my students and parents as well as helping out the community made me feel less helpless. 

We had a meeting at school on Friday about the plan for the last 2 days of school before Thanksgiving break. We still do not have water or internet at the school, but we do have power and heat. 
The school was not damaged, though our bus barn was completely demolished and 2 buses are gone. 

It was hard to try and think about something as unimportant as my Christmas concerts, but after talking to some teachers and community members it seems that the concerts should go on as planned. 
It will be something for the kids to look forward to as well as something the community can come to and enjoy together.  I will have to change up my original plan for the concert since we really couldn't pull off a "normal" program in this short of a time, but it will still be something that everyone can at least enjoy.

I have to admit that so many things I was stressed out about, don't seem as important now. 

We are continuing on though....with our new normal.

Last week (which seems like a year ago!) we met with the midwives. Everything looks great though I am now measuring 2 WHOLE WEEKS behind! I immediately became a little worried, but the midwife assured me that everything is still right on schedule. I don't mind the kid being late, I just want to make sure that everything is ok. 

The easiest way I think to get caught up is to answer some questions....

How far along: 37 weeks. Holy. Crap.
Total weight gain: LOST 1 POUND! LOST 1 POUND! At least last week at my midwives appointment I had. I knew Cracked Truck was throwing me off! 
Maternity clothes: Luckily a cold snap hit and I can feel comfortable in sweaters. Had to buy a new dress for the Christmas concerts though since the sweater dress I had planned on wearing would probably make me pass out from heat.
Stretch marks: Again, I feel I haven't explained this well enough. I am not one of those lucky 17 women that never get stretch marks. I have stretch marks already from when I grew too fast my 5th grade year of school. But! I don't have any from this pregnancy! I will give the stretch mark oil I used as shower gifts for everyone from now on.
Sleep: Starting to get a bit uncomfortable. I can't roll over easily without some pain. I also have been waking up once a night with either heartburn or a strong desire to go pee (sorry!). Usually I can't go back to sleep for about an hour after that, but I don't feel exhausted during the day really. 
Best moment of this week: Getting to help out my school community and feeling a little less helpless. I also got to have a prenatal massage on Friday. It. Was. Awesome! And one more thing, getting more and more ready for this kid to get here. We got a little tree for the hospital room: 
Blue for our boy

And a diaper bag for Dan:
He loves it.

My hospital bag is packed and his almost is. The nursery is soooo close to being done and we got some cloth diapers this week from an awesome friend (Hi Sara!)!

Miss anything: Wine. Can you tell we are getting close to the holidays??

Movement: Baby Harts seems to be moving a little less and more shifting around. Case in point: 
I looked down at my belly and realized Little Boy was hanging out on one side.

Food cravings: Well I may have gone to the store hungry last Friday night. That may have been a bad thing.
Dan now knows never to send a pregnant woman to the grocery store hungry every again.

Anything making you queasy or sick:  Some heartburn. Which for me consists of feeling like I am constantly throwing up in my mouth (sorry! sorry!). Not fun, especially at night.
Have you started to show yet: I got told today that I didn't look like I was due in 3 weeks! YAY! :) So not HUGE, but definetely starting to waddle.
Gender: Fell in love with a boy I fell in love once and almost completely He's in love with the world And sometimes these feelings can be so misleading
Labor signs: Getting a little more crampy. Also just feel stretched at times and my stomach gets hard. 
Belly button in or out: Still in but super flat. 
Wedding rings on or off: Well I finally had to do it. After waking up with my 4th finger slightly tingly and numb I knew my rings were getting too tight. 
This was 24 hours after taking off my rings

So Dan and I ran to Target (what better place to get a pretend wedding ring??) and bought a 10 dollar wedding band so I wouldn't feel weird walking around without something.

Simple and hopefully will fit the rest of the pregnancy!
Happy or moody most of the time: Rough week of emotions and stress. Working on the nursery was sort of my happy place this week. We have all the furniture and everything arranged. I am finishing up some art projects and then we'll hang everything up and be done!
An old t-shirt from a band Dan used to be in. Now art for our little boy's nursery!

Looking forward to: Short week at school (which feels weird considering I haven't been at school for a week!) and then family coming into town for Thanksgiving. I am not cooking this year, we have reservations at a restaurant, and it should be nice and low key. Midwife appointment again this Friday and every week from now on. Getting really close to D-Day! 

Sunday, November 17, 2013


I was all ready to write a post about how well things have been going and how great my midwife appointment went on Friday.

Then this happened:

This is the town where I teach. So much destruction. So many of my students who are now homeless. The school has some minor damage, but the town itself is a disaster area. 

I am just without words right now. 

The tornado went through at 1:20pm. 

If it had been a school day I would have been teaching 5th grade. 

Again, just no words to describe my emotions. 

This has really made me re-think my priorities. 

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Supply Run

This weekend was super busy for us.

Friday we decided it might be a good idea to start getting together a hospital bag. We made a trip over to Target (after enjoying some Chinese food and discussing daycare options) to get some supplies.

Dan was very patient with me as I went through options in my head about the way things could go and what I would need to feel prepared. I got a nightgown, robe, some nursing tanks and a few baby supplies. It was fun to go and get stuff and really made the time seem close that this is all going to happen!

Dan had even more fun when he spotted this: 
He thought that was pretty funny and giggled the rest of the time
we were in the store.

Saturday morning I headed up to Chicago pretty early with my friend Jackie to go to Bottle and Bottega. It is a painting, BYOB studio that my sister manages in the Lakeview neighborhood. It was so much for fun to create some paintings!

I made some more art for the nursery, while Jackie tackled
a painting she has been eyeing for awhile.

It was the perfect amount of creativity and structure for me and I really enjoyed myself. After we painted the morning away we headed to a little french bistro for lunch.

It was the best thing I have ever eaten!

I enjoyed friend chicken and waffles while Jackie got the bacon wrapped french toast. Yeah, Bistro Dre in Chicago. HIGHLY recommend it!

After brunch Jackie and I took a side trip to IKEA to pick up some new items for her living room. I couldn't resist this little guy:

It's a red, rocking MOOSE! Perfect for the nursery.

Dan already has it assembled:

After a long day we got home and Dan had had a busy day as well! He helped out some buddies at their houses then surprised me with this:

A new faucet!!

Our faucet had bit the dust awhile ago, the sprayer no longer worked and the water pressure was horrible. Thinking about all the bottles we were going to have to wash sort of motivated Dan to get this one which I had picked out over a year ago. Obviously there was always something else we felt was more important to buy whenever we had some extra funds. Dan is starting to feel a little pressure to get everything set and ready with the house before the kid comes. Besides not having time after the baby comes it will just feel nice to bring home our kid to a house that is ready, comfortable and functional.

On Sunday I headed  to church to get my children's choir ready for their first performance next Sunday at church. Dan tackled the leaves in 3 different yards with his buddy and fun new leaf sucking machine. He was very pleased about how much they got done in such a small amount of time. 
I am thrilled we can see our lawn again! 

I got our hospital bag all packed today with all our new supplies and started making our birth plan.

With 5 weeks left to go I hope, hope, hope, this kid doesn't make an early appearance, but I want to be as prepared as possible.


How far along: 35 weeks (I know! Can you believe only 5 weeks left??)
Total weight gain: Avoiding the scale so I won't cry. Friday is my next midwife appointment.
Maternity clothes: Getting a little more concerned about my lack of footwear that fits. I love my collection of shoes and I am down to about 4 pairs that I can still fit in and wear all day at school. 
Stretch marks: I almost wish it was swimsuit season so I could be one of those pregnant women at the pool in a two piece. I am so happy I haven't gotten any stretch marks yet!
Sleep: Again, still enjoying my sleep. Passing out pretty quickly every night as well thanks to running around all day. Didn't have time for any naps this weekend which I am a little bummed about, but there is always next!
Best moment of this week: Getting to hang out with my bestie for a whole day, just me and her!
Miss anything: Jack Daniels (gotta be honest)

Movement: Baby Harts did a nice percussive beat on my belly earlier this week as I was reading in bed. Dan even got to feel it! He kept it up for a good 3 or 4 minutes, just a constant punching (?) that never stopped. 
Food cravings: Was craving some chimichangas. Dan was happy to go get some mexican with me.
Anything making you queasy or sick:  Feeling great this week!
Have you started to show yet: I still am surprised when people ask when I am due. I know I look pretty pregnant, but don't they get worried about approaching a complete stranger and asking that question?? Never assume people!
Gender:She's in love with the boyShe's in love with the boyShe's in love with the boyWhat's meant to be will always find a way

Labor signs: A few strong braxton hicks (I think?) today. I was getting a pedicure, so for the first time it wasn't because I was pushing myself too hard physically. Only 3 though so I didn't become concerned.
Belly button in or out: Still in!
Wedding rings on or off: They are not coming off anytime soon.
Happy or moody most of the time: Busy, but happy.
Looking forward to: Again, next weekend I am hoping to get more done in the nursery (noticing a trend?). I ordered the rest of the big items we needed (rug, lights) this week, so I hope they come in by this weekend and we can get everything wrapped up in there!

Sunday, November 3, 2013

Only 6 weeks to go!

34 weeks! Can't believe how close we are to the finish line!

I feel like I have always been pregnant, but not in a bad way. But 8 months is a long time and you really learn to get used to being pregnant. 

Don't get me wrong, there are times I have looked forward to not sharing my body with somebody.  I also think I will miss feeling Baby Harts move and kick me though.

I am getting really excited about meeting him. Dan is as well. We really want to know who is this child inside me and what he will look like. 

I really can't wait to dress him in all the cute outfits I have received. I also went on a little shopping spree! There was a community wide garage sale that I hit up and scored big on 2 weekends ago. I spent 20 bux and got all of this:

 Even Dan was impressed by my haul!

We are so done buying clothes for awhile! Just hopefully this kid doesn't pop out at 10 pounds and we'll be good. 

I am still measuring a week behind which is just fine with me! Baby boy seems to be doing great and the midwives were happy with my blood pressure. Not so happy with my weight gain in the past 2 weeks though. I blame cracked truck which Dan and I went to for lunch right before my appointment. 
So good, but so bad for you Cracked Truck!

Hopefully next time I won't have gained any weight and can prove I am not doing that badly!
Dan has been sanding our dresser/changing table this weekend in preparation of painting it. 

I got some more art done for the nursery that I am pretty proud of:

Blue fox fox

A Mario mushroom in honor of Dan's love of video games

Hedgehog? Porcupine? We can't decide, but I like him

We had a great weekend as well. Got to hang out with friends, hang out with each other and just have a nice time. OH! And Thursday was Halloween. I had a lot of fun with my costume at school.
The kids (mostly) got it!

Next weekend should be more of the same for us now that wedding season is over and Dan is home more. My goal is to have the nursery done by Thanksgiving. 

There are a few major things we still have to get: rug, lights... but everything else is almost done. I put the sheets on the crib and the bassinet this weekend and got the baby rocker/bouncer set up. I was worried I was nesting and would go into labor Saturday night but maybe I am one of those lucky gals that nests for a month before her due date and gets tons of stuff done! Maybe?? 

Question question Question time....

34 weeks!
How far along: 34 weeks.....6 weeks!
Total weight gain: Sigh. 6 pounds. In 2 weeks. Sigh. Total weight gain for pregnancy is 26 pounds. Sigh.
Maternity clothes: Still like clothes, though non maternity shirts are now showing my belly, so no more of those!
Stretch marks: Have I mentioned my Stretch Mark Oil?? Because it is awesome!
Sleep: Going really well! Still only getting up once a night, but the heated mattress pad seems to be relieving any aches and pains.
Best moment of this week: Having a great weekend with Dan! Annnnddd finding a milk carton at the store with our due date on it! 

Miss anything: Shopping for shoes, and wearing cute shoes that don't make my feet look like sausages by the end of the day. :(

Movement: Kicking up a storm! 
Food cravings: Blueberries and a hamburger. I don't know...don't ask me, it's gotta be the kid!
Anything making you queasy or sick:  Feeling good! I just can't eat as much as I used to...seeing my weight gain, maybe thats a good thing!
Have you started to show yet: Getting bigger over here peeps!
This is 25, 30, 32, and 34 weeks

Gender: Well, I'm child and man and child again The toy broken boy soldier I'm child and man and child again The boy never gets older 
Labor signs: Cramping and a little tightness on the belly but this kid isn't coming anytime soon!
Belly button in or out: It's officially flat and no longer has any resemblance to my lovely belly button that I had. I am just glad I never pierced my belly button now (Thanks Dad!).
Wedding rings on or off: On, but oh dear, they can't come off anymore. Waited too long and now I am hoping I won't have to cut them off.
Happy or moody most of the time: Very long and pretty stressful week. 2 late nights of parent/teacher conferences and 2 Halloween concerts made this girl a tired, pregnant, gal. But 2 days of not having to set an alarm has helped wonders. Feel ready for the week!
Looking forward to: Getting the nursery more complete on top of maybe even tackling making one of these:
How many exacto knife blades will I go through??? Stay tuned to find out!