Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Spring/Summer Fun: Making The Most Of My Time Off

I may never get over missing the B-52s on Friday. I want that on record.

Spencer's 1st road trip was a smashing success. That boy proves he's more like me every day because he didn't mind being in the car one bit. He may end up cruising the country, acting a fool like mom. And it's not like he slept the entire time. He was up, taking in the views 71 South had to offer (Grandpa's Cheesebarn and not much else) and listening to the radio jams, and he entertained himself when he needed to. He's a peach. A travelling peach.

First we made a breakfast pit stop and ordered him something off a menu for the first time (yogurt). He also enjoyed a few bites of blueberry crepes off a fork...another first, he's typically a spoon man. Then we were on our way...to the GOASIS! My favorite gas station! But while that was mind-blowingly awesome per usual, the real destination was Aunt Becky's!

Let me first say she looks flat out FANTASTIC and happy. Really happy, so I am happy for her. She'd looked do tired and worn out for so long. I wish I could've soaked up more Becky time but it was HOT HOT HOT down there.  I tried to sit outside with Spencer a few times but my little potato was baking in the sun so we spent a lot of time inside, chatting with pals. And we got to see Santo! My dog is faaaaaaaat and happy. He really is where he belongs, running with the pack.

We only stayed a few hours because...it was HOT, 101 when we left...and I didn't want to risk that Spencer would get agitated on the way home. I hate leaving Becky, especially after such a short visit. It was like we got there and left. We stopped for dinner on the way home trying to feed our sorrows (and Spencer may or may not have tried chocolate, you be the judge) and then I called it quits on Sunday and put Spencer's 1st road trip in the books!

And yesterday was another day of firsts: Spencer went swimming for the 1st time!!

And he LIKED IT! My son HATES taking a bath so I thought we were doomed as a pool is just a big, and much colder, tub. Nope. Todd handed him to me, we prepared for the screams, and they never came. He held on to me pretty tightly for a while but then started to get adventurous. He finally dipped his arm in and went, "Wooooooooo", very quietly. And before too long, he was loosening his grasp, splashing around, and babbling. Never cried.

I was so very pumped because I was part fish as a child and this may be just another way he's like his mom. And when we go to the cabin in a few weeks, I know he won't be throwing a screaming fit in the pool, making people think I'm Monster Mom. It's good for his muscle tone and it's good for me, being 22 weeks pregnant now (at this point, Sullivan can hear, his brain is making more complex neurological connections, and his eyes are starting to perceive light).

Even after he took a little swim break, he got right back in with me. So awesome.

He was happy but WHOOPED after his fun in the sun. We all were. Overall, it was a great long weekend that, of course, wasn't long enough. And we can't forget to include Sullivan in the fun! My little maniac was doing some swimming of his own this weekend. I don't know if you know what Kick Counts are but after you eat or consume a lot of liquids, you lay down and your baby should move 10 or more times within an hour. Anything less may be cause for concern (which is exactly why Spencer made an early debut). Sullivan moved 10 times a MINUTE! For SEVERAL minutes.

He must know I'm talking about him as he's going berzerk right now!!

On top of him getting his swim on, he'll now have a place to lay his noggin thanks to my parents who bought him a crib. I can't wait until it arrives. And my parents also helped out with quite a few medical bills so I owe them a gigantic THANKS! Spencer's birth and lengthy NICU stay would've been expensive enough but you have to heap on top of that the fact that he's been seeing specialists since birth, I had to have emergency surgery for a kidney stone, and then I done went and got pregnant again! I may be gray before I get everything paid off but this was a big step in the right direction.

Baby doc on Friday. Can't wait to see what Sully is up to.

Physical and Speech AND the Oncology Clinic next week. I can do without that.

Saturday, May 26, 2012

Uber Long Weekend: Blogging From The Big Bed

My long weekends are always longer than other people's (don't be too jealous) since I don't work on Fridays. But this stretch will be exceptionally long since I got out of work early on Thursday! Believe me, I'm enjoying every free second I've got to the max.

In fact, I'm currently blogging from under the covers!

Spencer is still snoozing away so I thought I'd pop in to holla at y'all, but hopefully everyone will be having too much long weekend fun to even read this nonsense. Ahhhh, long weekend, how I love you. After busting out early on Thursday, I had lunch with my nephews and then dinner with my parents...and Spence Baby, of course! Both meals were spontaneous and kicked the weekend off in the right, and fattening, direction.

Yesterday Spencer had his monthly visit from his county nurse. She said AGAIN that she wishes she could clone me (makes me feel like I'm doing something right) and that since I'm SO on top of things and he's doing SO well, we can drop our visits to every other month! I didn't expect it so I was really jazzed. I said from the get-go that if Spencer struggled or lagged in any way, it would be because I didn't try hard enough...and I could never forgive myself for that.

Turns out he and I are one Hell of a team! The nurse and I discussed an Early Intervention program he can go to at 2 years old (which will basically just be fun time for him) and talked about how the best pre-school he could possible go to is right around the corner. It may prove difficult to get him in since it's soooo popular but I'll do whatever it takes. I'll cut off a toe. So many parents of typical kids (it's a program for typical and atypical rug rats) want their children in this program that it's already full for a year from now! Yeah, he's going to that school. Just try and tell me he can't. I dare you.

But that's a few years away. Back to the light-n-fluffy.

After our visit, I got in full-on home project mode. I'm having a major surge of energy and a need to nest!! My goal is to get the downstairs bathroom finished this weekend and maybe paint the laundry room if Todd will let me (it isn't on our TOP PRIORITY list). Since Todd and I are both off Monday, I'm sure we can accomplish a lot.

But it won't all be work! There's FUN to be had!

Spencer's God-Mommy is coming over today to play with us and tomorrow, it's his 1st road trip to Columbus!!! He can't wait to see his Aunt Becky and neither can I. We all deserve to kick back and take a break. So enjoy your long holiday weekends everyone. I've gotta go kick off my Saturday by buying a crib (!!!), toy box, and bookshelf! I'm not much of a shopper but this is the good stuff!! I can't wait until Baby Sullivan has a room! I also can't wait until he stops going all ninja on my bladder!

Oooooooooh, I hear some rustling in the Spencer Dome!

Happy Memorial Day and stuff. I'm sure there will be a boatload of pictures coming soon enough!

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Emotions: Not Just a Total Jam By The Bee-Gees

Sometimes emotions are just gross, am I right?

I've been very emotional the past few days. I know it comes along with the territory of being pregnant but it's a new feeling as I didn't have mood swings with Spencer. And it's not even that I'm having mood swings, per se. I'm just very sensitive to certain things, especially things having to do with children.

I saw an article about a little boy that is dying and his parents are trying to do the 81 things on his bucket list first. And there was another article about a little boy with Leukemia (too close for comfort) who loved the Marines. They made him an honorary member and one soldier insisted on standing watch outside his room for 8 hours before he died. On the radio they were talking about some broad in Florida who shot and killed her 4 kids. And there was a documentary about Andrea Yates who drown her kids in the bathtub. It's too much for my heart and brain to take!

Hell, I even had a mini-breakdown over an episode of Private Practice where one of the doctors was carrying a baby without a brain. When she delivered, they showed the baby and she took off his little beanie to expose his smooshed head. I cried sooooo hard that I had to stop feeding Spencer his bottle and just hug him for like 5 minutes straight.

And forget Law and Order: SVU. That show is OFF LIMITS. FOREVER!

Even blogging can stir up some unwanted emotions because you can go back and relive any moment that you've recorded. I like to go to back to the blog from Spencer's pregnancy from time to time to compare notes. What was going on when I was 22 weeks with Spencer? When did I feel him move? What did my body look like right before he was born? That part is all fun stuff.

But there's some un-fun, for sure. I forced myself to read the entries from the day AFTER Spencer was born until I abandoned ship over there. Ouch. Lots of ouch. I think I've grown leaps-n-bounds since then and I think I've handled everything ten times better than I thought I would/could. But I threw myself into being the best mom possible for Spencer trying to block out any pain, which doesn't necessarily make it any easier to remember those first days and weeks.

Particularly hard to read was, "I want to wake up from this nightmare. And I want Spencer to be there...and to be OK". It was even hard to retype just now.

I always feel 110% better when I see Spencer after these little spurts of emo-ness. Yesterday, I couldn't WAIT to pick him up from the babysitter. And we got some extra awesome snuggle time as he fell asleep in my arms in the big bed and just snoozed up there with me for awhile. It's amazing how any bad feelings just totally dissolve. Like he refuses to let me feel sad. It's my job to take care of him but he takes care of me, too.

And off the emotional topic, I think I'm starting to have Round Ligament Pains again. At least, I HOPE that's what they are because I'm having some sharp abdominal pains and I am not loving them at all. I had them with Spencer and was trying to figure out when (which is how I ended up on the old blog). I'm so worried that something could still go wrong with Sullivan that my brain is in a bit of a tizzy. But I'm pretty sure it's just RLP (hey, my dad's initials!) that I'm blowing out of proportion. I'll bring it up at my appointment next Friday.

Outside of all that, life is gravy. Looking forward to taking Spencer to C-Bus on Sunday!

Monday, May 21, 2012

Here's Something Clever: I Need a Weekend From My Weekend

Another weekend comes to a close and once again, my body is telling me that I didn't HAVE a weekend. I'm in such a panic over how much we have to get done before Spencer's birthday party (11 weeks) and Sullivan's arrival (18 weeks), that I think I'm pushing myself too hard, especially on Sundays.

Sundays seems to be the day we accomplish the most. Todd opened the pool and did some hardcore work in the back and front yards. I emptied out the art room and it's officially ready for paint, carpet, and Aiden's big move. Spencer helped keep me company while I tore apart a room I really loved (but reminding myself that the end result is having a new room for the new baby we'll be bringing home makes it SO WORTH IT). It helped.

But before we had one of our Any (and every) Given Sunday moments, I had some sweet times with my fella after shaking my stomach-wrecking sickness. Saturday, in sort of a spur of the moment fashion, I packed a bag and Spencer and I headed to Geneva-On-The-Lake for some firsts. First off, it was his longest car ride: an hour and 15 minutes. He snoozed the entire way until I pulled into the parking lot.

He also saw his first basketball games...my niece and nephew are on a Lithuanian league and this is where the tournament was held this year. He was fascinated by the squeaking of the shoes, the whistles, and all the kids running amok. He barely made a peep through 4 games and even took a nice, if not sweaty, nap.

Next on his checklist of "firsts" was going to the beach! The second I set him down on his blanket, he took a handful of sand and dropped it right in his face. Luckily, his eyes were closed (he's anti-sun, like mommy) and his quick 10 minute experience (the beach at Geneva was just a little too rock-filled to get him close to the water) was nothing short of fascinating. I think he just might be getting a sandbox for his birthday!

I wish Todd could've been there but he was dead set on getting some work done at Castle Grayskull. I couldn't complain. Anything that he does helps alleviate my stress, so I'm thankful for that, especially since it's starting to get difficult for me to do certain things. There will be a whole summer of beach memories after the work is done.

And here's a pregnancy memory for you: I've moved up to the next pant size! My preggo belly wasn't comfy anymore in my day-to-day jeans and I had a brand new pair of the next size up stashed in my closet (I thought I'd be bigger post-Spencer than I was) so here I am. In comfy pants but not in maternity pants, just how I like it. I also like that my belly button remains where it belongs and that I have no stretch marks or the creepy black belly line. Superficial, I know.

Sullivan is at the stage in development where he might taste whatever I'm eating. I hope he likes grape juice and chocolate covered peanuts because I can't get enough! He's been wiggling up a storm which makes me feel soooo good. The more he wiggles, the more I know he's OK in there. Somewhere buried deep in the back of my mind is the thought that something could STILL go wrong, no matter how many times we're told that he looks perfect and no matter that the test results say. I could make it all the way to September 24th and not bring a baby home. Heartbreaking.

And something about that thought had me, for a very, very brief moment, rethinking the tubal I have scheduled. They say not to do it if you're not 100% and I'm about...98% today. We wanted to have 2 children together. Each of the boys has their own room and we're not hurting for space by any means. We can afford the children we have. No one is going to be shorted anything they need, including love and attention. It all makes sense. But I'm questioning. I don't want to shut the factory down and have any regrets. Maybe it would be different if I started having kids in my 20s.

But really, I have no regrets about that. I did all the things I wanted to do...and I'm continuing to do all the things I want to do! Except that right at this very moment, I'd rather be playing with this guy...my evil, little monster!

And SPEAKING of monsters, was it just me or did Lady Gaga's voice sound really OFF on the Simpson's last night? I've heard her speaking voice live, twice, and MANY times on television and I don't recall it sounding quite like that. I love how she allowed them to poke major fun at her, but her voice...I just don't know.

And in other celebrity blather...farewell, Robin Gibb. You were a fine Bee Gee, indeed.

Friday, May 18, 2012

Stuck At Home: A Serious Case Of Cabin Fever

I've been sick, sick, sick the past few days which has been the pits. I don't think this is a pregnancy-related sickness but there's definitely been boat loads of cookie-tossing. I'm blaming it on Campbell's Vegetarian Vegetable ABC soup. I turned into a crimson volcano. But that's not the point.

I've been very zombie-esque since Tuesday night and I'm sick of being cooped up in this house...but I haven't been able to muster the ability to get out into the world.  I've already been in mondo sleep mode due to pregnancy but this has been more on the epic side. Lately I've been getting lots of projects done during weird spurts of energy but I'm spent right now. No showers, no make-up, no hair brushing. It's hard to be sick when it looks like paradise outside. Not that my view has been too bad. I guess my armpit is the place to be!

Luckily, I have had the opportunity for some extra Spencer Time and he's a great pal to have around. He's kept me smiling (when food hasn't been flying out of my craw). I just feel guilty not getting him out into the fresh air and sunshine. Hoping I can muster a little get-up-and-go when Todd gets home from work. Maybe we can go to the park or even just sit outside.

Need to have some outdoor fun with my Little Devil.

I am distracted as I type this because Spencer has discovered how to make fart sounds on his hand. Goof.

But being sick hasn't been the only thing going on in our lives. There's actually been some awesomeness and fun. We booked a cabin at Salt Fork State Park for a weekend in June and are super pumped about it! It'll be Spencer's 1st mini-road trip and 1st mini-vacation, and we'll be celebrating Aiden's 11th birthday there instead of having a party this year.

From Friday to Sunday, we'll be hiking, grilling, swimming (I love being pregnant in a bikini, is that creepy?), going to the beach, bonfires, BBQs, a luau, and doing whatever else we feel like as long as it can be considered "relaxing and lowkey". I'm really counting down the days. But I'm counting down the days to a lot of things. I may be addicted to countdowns.

And this morning, I saw my belly move for the 1st time (sooo cool) AND Sullivan had his 1st hiccups!! If he's anything like his brother, he'll have them for the next 18 weeks straight!! Love it.

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Check-Up: Boring Appointments Are The Best Appointments

We've had over 5,000 views in 5 months! Must be saying something interesting...

Just a quick little update on Spencer's 9 month well check-up at the Pediatrician. No vaccines, which was a big relief to me. The kid gets jabbed enough. He was super active and sweet during the appointment. His heart sounded good (even though a heart defect was ruled out at birth, I still panic about it) and his ears looked good. He's still 15.5 pounds and 27.5 inches, which is a middle of the road weight but makes him TALL. And the fact that he's tall means he's getting plenty to eat, which I was concerned about.

And speaking of stuffing his face, he can now move on to thicker table foods. Cottage cheese, apple sauce, mashed potatoes, yogurt...and if that all goes well, we can try cheese and lunch meats. He can even chow on a grilled cheese sandwich if we feel adventurous! We can basically look at what's on our plates are see what he can have...but honey, peanuts/peanut butter, shellfish, and eggs whites are still off limits. Peanut Butter can go to Hell anyway.

I know feeding him yogurt might not seem thrilling to you, but I was pumped about it. He's growing. He's getting older. It's all happening right before my eyes and I love it. And he loved the yogurt!

He also had some success with picking up his puffs and holding on to his own cookie. Again, may not seem that exciting to you but it practically made me cry. Things like that are major fine motor skills that he needs so it's very exciting for mommy to see him progressing. Watch...one day he'll walk on his hands or something and I'll probably explode.

Next appointment at one year with a repeat thyroid test, hearing exam, and some blood work.

Aunt Sherry hooked him up with an awesome new swimsuit as summer is around the corner!

So that's pretty much it. Not the most exciting report but important nonetheless! He was examined and things went well. Boring appointments are our favorites. And he only has ONE appointment for the rest of May and they come to our house so it's a breeze! I'm so looking forward to spending the summer with my little man, I can't even tell you. I enjoy all my days with him, of course, even the ones where we're cooped up in the house playing with the same ol' toys.

But this guy is ready to get out and see what the world has to offer! Feel free to come along!

Monday, May 14, 2012

20 Weeks: Passing the Half Way Mark To Sullivan

Quick note: my awesome Mother's Day ended on an even more awesome note than expected. Spencer came to join me in bed for Bob's Burgers and fell asleep with his hand on my cheek as I sang him Twinkle Twinkle/The Alphabet Song. It was perfection! And I woke up to a note that said, "Only 364 days until Mother's Day!".

Today I am 20 weeks along in my pregnancy and I can't really believe it. I felt like I was pregnant for an eternity with Spencer but this time...warp speed ahead! Sullivan is the size of a mango today (approximately 6.5 inches and 10 ounces, according to the goofy pregnancy apps I have) and has eyebrows and eyelids (soooooo creepy to think of him without them like some sort of fish). He's also moving a lot more which makes me happy. I KNOW I shouldn't compare pregnancies, but Spencer was such a wiggle worm that I was waiting and waiting for Sully to get moving. WELL...he's MOVING!

And he likes cake. He did some major acrobatics after I had a slice...or two.

A fun fact is that I'm not at the half way point today, I'm beyond it! Only 19 weeks to go until my scheduled C-Section!! While I'm super pumped for Sullivan to get here and complete our little family, I also know how much needs to be done before then. Two major bullet points are our home projects and Spencer's birthday party. There's so much to be done that if I think about it too much, my eyeballs try to escape from my head, dragging my brain along.

One plus is that I think we decided what to do with the new nursery. We think Sully's room is going to be animal themed. It'll be jungle colors (greens, browns, tans, animal prints) but won't be limited to jungle animals. I've seen lots of cool artwork recently featuring animals, specifically an awesome fox online and an owl at Target, plus I have an awesome print from Phoebe with a Slow Loris and bat. The 2 nurseries will be polar opposites since the Spencer Dome is all decked out Sci-Fi style. I feel good about it.

I also feel good about a trip to Ikea Tessa and I are planning to look for nursery furniture.

Spencer has his 9 month appointment at the Pediatrician this afternoon. I think this means vaccines but I can't be sure. I'm looking forward to hearing his height and weight though I'm not sure how much he will have grown in the 2 weeks since he saw the specialist. After this...no appointments until a week from Friday!!! HOORAY!!

Enjoy your Monday.

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Spoiled Rotten & Not Complaining: A Perfect 1st Mother's Day

Before I start rambling about my Sunday adventure, let me say HAPPY MOTHER'S DAY to all the moms/mommys/mamas in my life, family and friends. I hope your day was as great as mine has been. Especially my mom who is in California on vacation and has been hiking on top of some mountain which is baffling. Happy Mother's Day, mom!

Today we celebrated my very 1st Mother's Day and I can honestly say I can't imagine it being any better.

This might be more pictures than blather...so you may enjoy it more!

I woke up early to an empty bed so I went to the Spencer Dome and scooped up my son, the dude who I couldn't be a mother without, and brought him into my bed for a little snuggle session. The next thing I know, Todd appears with blueberry crepes for breakfast in bed!! A gal could get used to that! Dr. Nightmare joined us and it was a nice moment having everyone piled together. I felt content. *Breakfast picture care of Chef Todd who got up at 5:30am to pick up my meal from Bob Evans, ha!

After I fueled up for the day, I fed my son and just relaxed. for awhile, enjoying having this sweet little dude in my arms. I sometimes still can't believe I'm someones mother, let alone the mother of such an unbelievably awesome little fella. I'm truly glad that things worked out in my life the way they did and I have had the opportunity to be a mom. It's been the coolest part of my life for sure.

The morning passed by with cartoons, a movie (Snatch, the perfect Mother's Day flick), and a quick pit stop at my sister's. Then we were off to lunch at The Melting Pot, one of my favorite restaurants for special occasions. It's the kind of place you go when you're Hell bent on stuffing your face to the max. I got a fancy non-alcoholic beverage (gotta keep Sully growing big and strong), we ordered our feast, and then I got to open my gift!! A gift I had been excited for ever since I discovered red paint in between 2 of Spencer's fingers last week...hmmmm.

The card read: Happy Mother's Day. Spencer is the luckiest boy to have an ace in his corner. We love you very much. Love, me, Spencer & Sully. That made me misty-eyed but the gift was the REAL kicker. A framed craft from Spencer that said I Heart U and the heart had been made by his BUTT CHEEKS (of which he has very little)! I still can't stop laughing about it. The "U" was also made by the side of his hand but  he kept wriggling. A butt cheek heart...only Todd would think of it, I swear!

Of course we stuffed ourselves silly and Spencer was the perfect gentleman the whole time.

My Mother's Day continued as I got to blow a little dough on Spencer and Sullivan, scoring them some new duds. Not that they need any more clothes, as I discovered yesterday! Spencer wore so many things once or not at all that Sully is pretty much set! But still...he needs to get some things that are just his. It makes me feel good to buy him little treats. And clearly Spencer needed new shark flip-flops, even if they don't fit just yet!

We headed to a Greenhouse for the next part of my gift, flowers for around the front door. Our yard is a lot of trees and greenery which is fine but I wanted some color in my life! So I picked out plants...a Todd plant, Spencer plant, and Sullivan plant...and as soon as we got home, Todd set to work squaring things away. I can't wait to pull in from work tomorrow and see them! But I hope we don't kill the poor suckers. I've never had much of a green thumb despite my desire for lots of plants and a garden. I'm a murderer that way. Mulch is up next...can you kill mulch?


While I played on the floor with Spencer, Todd said he had one more surprise to wrap up the day (he WAS going to watch Breaking Dawn with me but just couldn't bring himself to do it, DRAT). It was a chocolate cake with chocolate frosting...I had jokingly requested that yesterday when he asked what I wanted for Mother's Day breakfast. I plan on bringing my evening to a close with cake and milk-on-ice in bed.

These two got a jump start on the snoozing! They worked hard to make it a great day and deserve naps!

For the sake of posterity, LAST Mother's Day, I looked like this:

And for added posterity, THIS Mother's Day, I look like THIS:

But NEXT Mother's Day, I plan to look like this...with 2 beautiful boys running amuck!

HAPPY MOTHER'S DAY!!! If your day was a fraction as good as mine was, you're in good shape. A gigantic cyber THANK YOU to my husband. I would've been happy doing whatever, doing nothing, as long as I was with him and my son (and my little acrobat in utero, who made his presence know during the day), but he really made it a super great day that I will never forget. His effort did not go unnoticed. But I don't need to be celebrated for being a mom. I chose to be one and because of my choice, it's my JOB to take care of my kids and my family. But it's still nice to hear you're doing OK and that the people you care about most appreciate you.

Mother's Day may become my favorite day of the year. It reminded me how lucky I really am.