38 Weeks

Lots of Pregnancy Love going on here.


When Anthony sees this someday, I’ll make sure to tell him it’s because I already loved him sooo much that I couldn’t WAIT to meet him.

I will probably “fail” to mention all the other stuff 🙂


A few updates on the house…

Last week, I took out a money order for several thousand dollars and put it in our escrow account as our “earnest money”. Whew!!! Talk about a rush! I came home and said, “Jesse, this shit just got real!” It was terrifying! I’ve never spent that much money in my entire life!

Today, Jesse and I drove down to SLO and spent an hour signing at least 50 papers. Again…terrifying!

Wednesday is our scheduled home inspection. Since the house is so new (the two already-declared items are a loose sink faucet and a faulty deadbolt on the front door) that we don’t expect anything major to show up…but it’s one more important hurdle.


37 weeks, 3 days

So…I may have gotten a little tired and lazy on Thursday and didn’t post a picture. Perhaps I’m also in denial. HOW IS HE STILL IN HERE? I know I sound ridiculous, seeing as 37 is just barely full term, but I’ve had so many different episodes of painful contractions that I’ve started counting with a stopwatch, only to have them gradually spread back out again into just Braxton Hicks. Twice last night, painful contractions woke me up and I started timing them, only to wake up with Jesse’s alarm a few hours later, no labor, no baby. Agh! It’s maddening.


Today, I did some contemplating about this whole me + pregnancy thing. The truth is, I should be very grateful. As far as average pregnancies go, mine have both been relatively easy and complication free. No swelling, no stretch marks, no throwing up, no bed rest, no gestational diabetes, no anemia, no Strep B, no hormone swings. Without exercising or dieting (I eat icecream/McFlurries every single day), I only gain 20-30 pounds, and last time I lost it all within a week.

So, by all accounts, it would seem that I should be fine with pregnancy. We should be buds. Just some heartburn that a Tums or glass of milk here or there makes bearable, and some nausea that makes me extremely picky all of the time. I don’t necessarily have child-bearing hips, as they say, but hey, they brought Gregory into the world just fine, all the same (although they feel like someone took a baseball bat to each side!). But my chiropractor has almost completely cured my horrible sciatica, caused by my curved tailbone, so even that’s not an issue anymore! And the awful carpal tunnel hasn’t made it’s dreaded appearance again, either.

But I don’t love pregnancy.  I really really really don’t. I hate being incapacitated, I hate having to say “no” because I’m too weak and tired, and I hate having my brain muddled by anything that’s slightly difficult or frustrating. I want to be emotionally available to help people, and I want to be physically able to help around the house, to hold Gregory for long periods of time again, to “shoot hoops” with Gregory and Jesse outside (I’ve tried shooting once or twice, without the help of any ab muscles, obviously, and G just gives me this look like, “really, mom? that’s pathetic.”).

People reminisce about pregnancy, remembering how “special” they felt, carrying a life around inside of them, but I just feel like a spectacle or a circus freak. Last week at the store, I realized that I kept receiving a certain “look” that reminded me more of a grimace. It was as if people were staring and going, “Oh, you look miserable!”. Last night, as we were all sitting on the couches, I asked Jesse to get something for me from the table. He said he’d rather not, so I said I’d get it. Immediately, he responded, “No! Then I’ll feel bad! I don’t want to watch you!” “Is it THAT grotesque? That painful???” I growled. He paused, got very silent, then whispered, “yes?” Wrong answer, dude.

I’ve always had the desire for many children, all the way back to when I was 10 years old and talked all the time of the orphanages I was going to found. I always pictured having 4-5 kids of my own, along with adopting a bunch more.

But why is it so hard to grow kids? I’m willing to give them a home, love them, make sacrifices for them. I’ll even go through labor, episiotomies and cracked tailbones…anything! Why does one have to be pregnant, on top of all that?

I know I sound ridiculous and ungrateful. Please excuse the pregnancy ranting, it probably won’t make sense to me in a few weeks either.



Along the same lines…

Our drive to church 🙂

For Granted

Having lived in Texas for 4 years– a place that is wonderfully green many months out of the year, but oh-so-flat!– driving around this area still catches me off guard with all its beauty. Seriously– this is the drive I get to make, 2-3 times a week! As I was growing up, it never used to strike me how pretty the views and the mountains are. I think that people who have been living here for a while start to take commutes like this for granted!


Totally weird. Just got done with a 20 minute phone conversation with a hiring rep from another school around here who’s not only heard of UD, but also went to Biola and loves Torrey grads. He was basically willing to offer me any sort of class package, full or part time, in order to come teach for them!

It probably didn’t hurt that I was able to say I just finished translating Book 6 of the Aeneid (I wasn’t bragging though…it actually came up in the conversation! Honest!)

Oh well, at least I know that there are backup options!

Also, I’ve been letting G play with stuff in the recycle bin all morning, just so I can finish grading this last round of rough drafts for my students. Hmm….does that make me a horrible mother? He’s totally having a ball!

Bad Day

I had a really really bad day today. I’ll spare everyone the details for the time being, but let’s just say that I was more stressed out and frustrated than I’ve been in a long time. Part of the reason is that I am going on Night #3 of no sleep, thanks to all the contractions. Seriously, Anthony– either STAY PUT or GET OUT. You cannot have it both ways. Days of contractions + sleeplessness + pregnancy hormones + house buying= bad combination.

But I had a moment of clarity today. I picked Gregory up (a feat at this stage, because I have giant contractions the entire time, just from the exertion!), and all of a sudden, I was completely overwhelmed with how blessed I felt. Gregory is not only doggone adorable (I honestly believe he is one of the cutest kids I have EVER laid eyes on), but I love his little personality. His antics are priceless and I will treasure them always, especially how he now says a combination, “Bye-Bye, Love you!” every time we part, even for a second. I can’t get enough of how soft his cheeks are, how good he smells, how adorable his curly hair looks after he’s fallen asleep in his carseat.

Above all, I love how soft and tender his little heart is– at one point today, I yelled at him, frustrated because that stupid refrigerator letter game was on constant repeat. It took a few seconds, as though he was trying to overcome his hurt, but then he crumpled into a heap on the kitchen floor, sobbing as though he had lost the will to live. All because I raised my voice at him. I immediately ran over, picked him up and cuddled him close, whispering over and over again how sorry mommy was for yelling. He just put his head on my shoulder, crying these soft little sobs…oh my goodness. It crushed me to the core.

And it made me realize– God has given me such a great treasure in Gregory. There’s not much more I need to say, and there’s not much more that I should want. I have a beautiful life that God entrusted me with here on this earth, and I am definitely not worthy of it. He deserves so so so much better, but he’ll just have to settle for Jesse and I 🙂

Pier 1 Run

Yes, it rhymes.

In celebration of a big sale that coincided with our house offer getting officially accepted today, I finally spent $300 worth of gift cards I’ve been saving since last August and Christmas ($200 from my brother, $100 as a goodbye present from a piano student in TX). I’ve had my eye on a few things for a while…and they all went on sale!

Also, regardless of where we move, these are things we could use after we purged stuff during our TX/CA move. Just in case though, I’m keeping the receipts until we officially move in somewhere!

$74/each, bought two for the living room, since we left our old lamps with Julie in TX. Thank God for giftcards! Loving the blue bird in the shade...fits so perfectly with my decor!

These curtains were 40% off-- just $19/panel! Woohoo!

A soft fuzzy rug for Gregory and Anthony's room-- $99!

The total came to $310, so I got all of the above for just $10! Now, if I can just have the self control to keep them all in their packaging until we move… 😀


So….there’s still plenty of time for things to go wrong. 45 days worth of time, to be exact. So I’m not going to jinx things by writing too much about our possible house. Negotiations have been going on for over a week, and I intentionally haven’t mentioned it, simply because I don’t want to speak too soon. We’ve never done this “house offer” thing, and it’s all a bit terrifying.

But here are a few of the upsides and downsides, if we get this house:

1. Downside #1: The payment is a bit more than I wanted in my “perfect” budget– the one in which I don’t work at all. I will have to continue teaching next year, at least working a total of 15-20 hours. I have a feeling (hardy-haha) that working this much will be much tougher once we have two kiddos. Then again…in some ways it will be easier, because I won’t be incredibly nauseous (like I was for the first 3 months of teaching this year) or incredibly large and uncomfortable, with tons of contractions that make it difficult to talk…or move…tough stuff when you’re lecturing in front of teenagers! Let me tell you, trying not to say a 4-letter word when you’re having a sudden sharp and painful contraction and they’re all watching?…awkward much??

2. Downside #2: The house is a bit smaller than we originally wanted. It has 3 bedrooms, but the 3rd one is small. Then again, utilities will be a dream, and I was already adamant that I wanted the boys to share a room (after Anthony is done co-sleeping with us for 6-8 months). So the 3rd bedroom is actually a perfect size and location for a much needed office! And I’ve definitely realized that square footage is completely misleading– it all depends on efficiency of layout. For example, the living/dining area in this house is bigger and more usable than in our larger apartment back in TX! In fact, even though this house is 300 square feet smaller than our last apartment, it feels the same or bigger, overall. Plus….can’t beat the whole “1 story” and “2 car garage” convenience! Hurray for no more stairs!!! And Gregory loves playing in the yard, so I love how both the kitchen and dining room look out over the backyard. Multi-tasking, here we come!

3. Downside #3: No room for a chicken coop. Haha, this could seem like a small or  big deal, depending on how you look at it. I’m over-ambitious as to what I can do/accomplish, working, finishing my masters degree, all with two kids, so this actually reigns me in a little bit 🙂 We’ve estimated, from measurements and such, that the backyard is big enough for 2 large garden beds, a nice patio area, and a sandbox/playground area. We don’t want any lawn to maintain in the backyard, so it’s perfect in that regard. The front yard, however, has a nice lawn– we just need to fence it in, since the road going by it is a bit busier than I’d like, especially during school drop off and pick up hours.

4. UPSIDE #1: This one is HUGE. Like mega-huge. This house is SO CLOSE to our work, that we could literally throw a rock and hit the Kindergarten playground! Not that we’d want to…but you get the point. Jesse will be able to walk out the front door and be sitting at his desk within 5 minutes! In “Biola terms”, the distance is something like Hart Hall to the baseball field– THAT close! Since I am back and forth so much, given my part time status, this will be perfect for me when I’m coming home to nurse for a moment (instead of having to pump!).  On my days off, Gregory, Anthony and I can just grab the stroller, walk around the corner, and meet Jesse for lunch! The other thing very nearby is the library– about a 6 minute walk in the other direction! My parents are a little further away– a 3 minute drive, 15 minute walk. Not bad, eh?

The green arrow is the house. See where it intersects "High School Hill Rd"? That's the school! The library is where Atascadero Ave. and Navajoa St. intersect. And being so close to the freeway will cut down on the driving when I go to Paso or San Luis Obispo for piano lessons!

I love the thought of yet another year where Jesse is home by 3:15, every day. On Mondays and Fridays, this means we have several hours together as a family before G goes to bed. On Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays, this means I can get all of my piano lessons taught by dinner time. Awesome!!

4. Upside #2: The house is only 8 years old, built the year I graduated from high school (funny, I can actually remember them beginning construction on it around that time!). So we won’t need to worry about replacing a roof or high utilities, since the windows, water heater and ac unit are super new. The seller just replaced the carpet in the entire house as well– a bit of a downside, since I wanted an excuse to put in wood floors right away. But it’s better for our budget, to be sure 😉

So there you have it. We picked this house not because it’s our dream/forever home, but because it is perfect for us in our “5 Year Plan”. Our goals for this plan include having our student loans and car loan completely paid off, so not getting our big dream house will enable us to have the $ to meet these goals. And we’re tired of throwing money away every month in rent, especially when renting a house big enough for 4 people is more expensive than a mortgage!

And, to be honest, when I think about the fact that in 45 days I might have my own house, with my own yard and my own kitchen….I’m soooo deliriously giddy that it’s hard to even imagine what my dream house ever could look like! It’s so much nicer and so much more than we’ve ever had before…I can’t wait to raise my two little boys in it!!!

I can even bear the thought of Gregory and Anthony going to Preschool/Kindergarten, since I would nearly be able to watch them on the playground from my front porch (not to mention the free tuition)! And you can shove off with your helicopter-mamma comments, I will just ignore them 🙂

Pregnancy Cravings

I realized that I should record a few of the strange cravings I’ve been having over this pregnancy.

* Ice chips– this probably means my nutrients are deficient in some way, but whatever, I do what I can. I just LOVE chewing on ice! Ice water is particularly fine– I drink 2 big glasses every morning with my half cup of coffee.

* Tuna, especially tuna salad!

* Top Ramen– this is a disgusting and embarrassing one from the first trimester.

* Taco Bell burritos– equally embarrassing, nutritionally speaking 🙂

* Soup, especially Minestrone

*Peanut Butter and Jelly Sandwiches– I’ve never liked these before now!

* Peaches!!!

* McFlurrys (oh, mini-snack size, you are a tummy angel!)

* Thrifty’s Cookie Dough Icecream

* DONUTS. nahmnahm

* Strawberries– In a day, G and I can eat a whole container of fresh organic strawberries, BY OURSELVES

My beer cravings are still pretty strong, but not as bad as last time. In case you don’t remember, before I got pregnant with Gregory, I disdained even the SMELL of beer. During the pregnancy, it was all of a sudden there– this irresistible, can’t-get-through-a-beer-commercial type of thirst. I barely even knew what beer tasted like, having only had a sip or two in my life, but all of a sudden, I was Gollum and it was my ring. Jesse bought me some non-alcoholic beer, and I loved it, not knowing any better. After I had G, Jesse introduced me to the wonderful world of dark, malty beers and I fell in love (lest you think I sound like an alcoholic, I can barely finish a beer before I’m full…not even close to being enough for any sort of buzz or even having a dangerous level in breastmilk!). And then, when my milk supply struggled, I drank two beers a day along with a ton of Brewer’s Yeast.

But now, having tasted such wonderful dark beer, I can no longer stand the non-alcoholic stuff. It’s way too bitter and weak.

So, I bide my time…Jesse’s promised that if I do a good job birthing this kid, he’ll take me out for a nice beer on tap! Can’t wait, for sooo many reasons, the least of which is I would like an end to all these contractions! Last night, I hardly slept at all. They just kept coming, and I couldn’t even sleep through many of them.