27 August 2009

The drunkard in my belly

Hic, hic, hic….
It’s that time of day again!

At some point between 3:00 and 4:00 every afternoon, almost without fail, the baby goes through a bout of the hiccups. At first I used to feel bad for the little guy, now I just laugh at his predictability. I certainly hope they don’t feel as unpleasant inside the womb as they do outside. For now I take comfort in knowing that his diaphragm is developing as he has started the act of trying to breath…such a smart little one!

All these hiccups lead me to wonder what he’s going to be like once he’s in the world. Hopefully this afternoon ritual is only a passing “in womb” phase….otherwise I may have one discontented baby on my hands.

I had a dream several nights ago about the “Bean”. For the first time ever, I saw his face! I’m somewhat scared to report that he looked exactly like his father, which typically wouldn’t be an issue except for the fact that baby was sporting the same unshaven half-beard look as hubby. So it seems I may have a child that hiccups like a drunkard and looks like a hobo…excellent!

25 August 2009

Still alive...just

I was so proud to be back on a faithful blogging streak that it was bound to fail eventually. Life has been simply too hectic to keep up over the past few weeks. With only six weeks of work left before vacation and maternity leave, I’d like to say that I’m seeing the light at the end of the tunnel but I’m still bogged down.

To make a long story short, on top of dealing with baby preparations and financing for the new home, July and August were quite possibly the busiest and most stressful months of work that I have ever endured. I was involved in a big media story and event – a first-time occurrence for my initiative. Essentially, I viewed it as a “make or break” case for career, a chance to prove myself within the organization. Thankfully it all came off beautifully! In the end and I feel that I’ll be walking away from here on a high note – very weary, albeit much wiser and more confident in my abilities. I’m still not sure how I managed to keep gestating; some days I feared that the stress would cause “bean” to make an early appearance….yikes!

Speaking of early appearances, I am both thrilled and frightened to report that I know of two October Moms that have already delivered their babies – both were under 33 weeks! Since becoming pregnant, I have been chatting with fellow October Mommies-to-be on an internet forum. We have been following each others’ ups and downs over the past several months and I was shocked to learn about the early deliveries. I had almost convinced myself that I have oodles of time left before the baby arrives; this was a reminder that things really are getting closer. I really hope that our little one continues to marinate for at least another 6-7 weeks. I can’t even begin to imagine how scary it would be to deliver 2 months prematurely. Thankfully both little babies are in good care in the hospital, but it will be a very tiring 4-6 weeks until their families can bring them home.

Nothing else new and exciting to report. I’m growing by the day and can’t believe that I have gained 34 lbs so far! People keep telling me how small I look for 32 weeks, so I wonder where the heck all of this weight is going?!? There’s no sense beating myself up over the weight issue. I do indulge but I also eat a well-balanced diet and exercise at least 4-5 x each week.

Baby shower is coming up this weekend – very excited for that! It will be nice to have a day to simply relax, be with family and friends and celebrate the little one.

17 August 2009

Done deal

It's official! Yesterday hubby and I were heartily applauded as we put the SOLD sticker on the site plan for our new home. After a thorough two-hour meeting with the sales representative, and four painful post-dated deposit cheques later, we found ourselves feeling somewhat dumbfounded by the fact that we had just purchased our ‘forever home’ in exactly seven days. There’s no turning back now, only looking ahead towards both the stress and fun to come.

Seeing as I’m quickly turning into a lumbering hippo, I’m now in the process of trying to book appointments with the design centre to sort out our colours and upgrades. The studio is swamped but I’m hoping that they can squeeze us in soon because it will be near impossible to focus on décor issues after the baby is born. While I love hubby dearly, there’s no way I’m letting him select the colour scheme on his own…

While I’d like to say that I’m super excited right now, I’m just anxious to get things done and get into the new abode. I don’t relish the thought of living in a construction zone but I think the payoff will be worth it in the end to have the extra space and room to stretch out. I already find that I’m trying to detach myself from our current home but it’s hard after three years of blood, sweat and tears. I’m happy to move on but I’m sad to leave too.

15 August 2009

Like a kid at Christmas

I woke up this morning with that unmistakable sense of anticipation, the kind that makes you bolt upright and begin pacing the room in impatience. Hubby, on the other hand, is more like the parent in this situation – groaning, rolling over and eager to get a little more shuteye before having to deal with the caged animal running tracks in the carpet.

Whenever there is a big change about to happen in my life, I go through an emotional rollercoaster and typical chain of events. First I am gripped with fear and apprehension, causing sleepless nights, irritability and a heaping dose of self doubt. Finally, when I come around to the idea of change and have a clearer direction of where I’m headed (AKA working out financial feasibility), I get overly eager, excited and impatient to get the wheels in motion. Finally, when the ball is well and truly rolling, I plow ahead full steam with a vision in my mind and a planner/ organizer in my hand.

After talking to the bank last evening and having a market assessment done of our home, I think I can now comfortably say that I’ve fallen into the second stage of change management. I think we can feasibly handle the move, I’m excited and I’m chomping at the bit to make a deposit and sign on the dotted line. At this point I’m ready to move forward and not look back.

Things are going to start moving quickly. Hubby and I are going to visit the sales centre today to put down a deposit with the builder and draft up a purchase agreement. We also have an appointment this afternoon with the bank to discuss locking in at the current builder’s interest rate for 12 months. We will still have the option to shop around for a better rate however this will at least ensure us an interest rate that we know we could safely manage for the first five years in our new home. With the economy beginning to recover from the recession, interest rates are projected to increase rapidly so locking in imperative for us right now.

It has been a whirlwind week and the pace is only likely to continue for the rest of the month. I can’t believe I’m doing this while 30 weeks pregnant but I know we’re making this move for the future of our family and that thought alone keeps me “somewhat” sane and focused.

13 August 2009

Fetus 1 vs. Mommy 0

Today Bean has been rolling around a good deal. For about two solid minutes, I watched in horror as my belly sloshed from one side to the other. It isn’t painful but it certainly makes me pause at times. Out of pure curiosity (certainly not revenge…ahem…) I sometimes fight back by jiggling my belly in response to see if it will elicit further reaction from him. A sick little part of me thinks, “So there! See if you like that!” Usually my plan backfires as he inevitably gains the upper hand (leg or fist), by mashing my insides even more. He has an unfair and distinct advantage of being on the inside, within striking distance of a plethora of internal organs….so NOT fair! Please tell me I’m not the only one that play fights with her fetus? Is it also mean to laugh at him when he gets the hiccups? Sometimes I wonder if I’m truly mature enough to raise a child...

12 August 2009

Things are moving fast

Hubby spoke with the mortgage broker last evening and he has already started the ball rolling on our preapproval; he is also looking into whether we can feasibly carry two mortgages in the event that our house stays on market longer than anticipated. I certainly hope it doesn’t come to this worst case scenario but it’s always good to make sure you can support yourself in the event that it does happen. I’m trying not to sweat it too much right now as there should be a few different options to consider. Other people go through this all the time and I’m sure we’ll survive as well.

Tonight I’m taking Mom and Dad to see the model home. On Friday my brother’s Mother-In-Law will be coming over to give hubby and I a free market assessment on our home. We have lucked out by having an experienced real-estate agent in the extended family. I’m certainly hoping that we won’t have to pump much more money into the home to get top resale value; we have done many upgrades as is and I’m hoping we’ll fetch a good price on the market with what we have now. The only things I may consider doing, is adding backsplash in the kitchen and replacing our white fume hood with a black one.

Busy times! I can’t wait until everything is in order and we can seal the deal. I still want to cry every time I look at our brand new nursery that baby will only get to enjoy for 6 months of his life. He may not have chair rail in his new abode, but I take comfort in the fact that he’ll probably appreciate the bigger space much more. We'll still keep the zoo theme going and bring all the fabrics and decorations with us, the wall colour will just be plainer to start.

Want to see more photos of the layout? I found a local realestate agent that recently sold the same model -
check it out!

10 August 2009

Home Sweet NEW Home

My head is spinning right now. Hubby and I woke up on Sunday morning thinking that we’d still be in our tiny little semi for another 18 months; twenty-four hours later we have a lot reserved for a new single family home. When things happen, they happen fast it seems.

The idea to look at model homes came out of both curiosity and boredom on Sunday afternoon. We knew that we wanted to move by early 2011 as the baby will be more mobile then and our home will be overrun with “stuff” everywhere. As it is, our tiny space is starting to feel suffocating with only two people. We swore we would try resale this time but were curious to see what our budget could get us in a new home. Low and behold, we fell in love with the first model we walked into. We got that same instinctive gut feeling that we did when we purchased our current home. After weighing the pros and cons and sleeping on it (or rather ‘trying’ to sleep because I was so anxious), we revisited the house today to see if it had the same effect on us – whammy, we loved it even more.

After reserving our lot we now play the stressful financial game of working out a mortgage and trying to sell this place by next April / May. It’s a lot to digest while thirty weeks pregnant and I’m wondering if we’ve completely lost our marbles. There are many advantages to buying now when the market is decent and we can lock in at a low interest rate, not to mention not having to pay the damn harmonized sales tax that comes into effect on new homes in July 2010. Being on maternity leave while moving might also prove to be handy, the baby will be too young to care and I’ll be exhausted anyways. I can also be home during the day to supervise the comings and goings of workers, etc.

This is all very exciting and terrifying. I hope we’re not getting in over our heads but I remember having these same doubts and fears when we first moved. I’m always anxious when it comes to financials but somehow we’ve made it work over the past three years on top of doing a fair bit of traveling. Now we’re focused on our “forever home,” the place where our children will grow up and we’ll grow old…scary thought. While I’ll miss my first little home and probably bawl my eyes out when I leave; I’m looking forward to starting over and giving our family the space that it will need.

09 August 2009

Nursery News!

Don’t I look so cookie-cutter 1950’s housewife (complete with Mumu I might add)?

As you have probably discerned from my photo, the nursery is now well on its way!
I am absolutely thrilled with the way things are turning out and it’s wonderful to see my ideas become a reality. Hubby is extremely relived to be done with the painting and has claimed, “Never again!” (Not to having more children, just “never again’ to painting).

With the nursery is order, I have finally been able to start organizing my little nest for baby.
I washed a stored away a ton of clothing, face clothes, crib sheets, hats, socks, booties…you get the picture. With the aid of an inexpensive closet organizer and some cute wicker storage pins (which I fancied up with some ribbon), everything is now neat and tidy.

There are still two outstanding pieces of furniture that we are waiting on – a 4-drawer dresser and a beautiful glider; hopefully they will arrive before mid-September.
I still have to make some artwork to go above the change table (our infamous $10 find), but I have a few cute ideas floating around.

Without further ado, here is our little nest in the making:

The bland room before renos

Looking in through the door

Cute place to change dirty bottom

I dub the look, "Sophisti-Zoo"

Who says a boy can't have clothing?

06 August 2009

Things are looking up; the head is down

I went for my 29 week prenatal appointment today and found out some good news. My gestational diabetes test came back negative, the baby has a good heartbeat, my fainting spell was perfectly normal and the baby’s head is facing downwards. It looks like mother’s intuition, or rather the pain in my ribs, was accurate. The good news – he’ll probably drop more in about three weeks and put less pressure on my ribs; the bad news – he’ll just shift the pain to somewhere else. To my understanding, comfort is somewhat of a rarity in the third trimester.

I am also happy to report that the chair rail was successfully installed in the nursery last evening. Hubby just has a few more touch up jobs to do this evening and then the room will be ready for the crib this weekend. I’m very pleased with the way everything is turning out. There is nothing more satisfying than seeing your ideas and sketches come to life, especially when everything meets or exceeds your expectations. I’ll be sure to post some photos this weekend when things are a little more “pretty”.

04 August 2009

Oh, the old gray mare, she ain't what she used to be

The August long weekend has come and gone and it leaves me feeling a wee bit anxious about how quickly the summer is flying past. Before I know it, I’ll have reached the single-digit countdown to bean’s birthday…yikes!This past weekend was productively spent pulling weeds, cleaning edges, trimming shrubs and generally pushing my body beyond its third trimester limits. I learned of my faux pas on Saturday night when it seemed that every joint in my body ached or locked up…fun times! On the up side, my garden looks fantastic!

On Sunday I baked up a homemade rhubarb and strawberry galette – a French open-faced pie/ pastry. Thankfully I scored a lovely bundle of fresh local rhubarb at the farmer’s market and had been dying to remake this old classic. I think Grandpère’s baker genes must have brushed off on me a little because the pastry turned out perfectly and it was promptly gobbled and enjoyed by our company that evening. Did I ever mention that I love baking? I think if I won the lottery, I’d up sticks, move to France and start studying to become a pastry chef. Of course, hubby is a strong advocate of this dream!

We thoroughly enjoyed our dinner party with good friends M, L and the ever-so-cute baby C. These brave folks had just returned from a month’s vacation in Australia…with a nine-month old! I think that feat alone should get them out of having to cook any meals for a few weeks! We were happy to oblige and enjoyed hearing about their adventures and seeing some of their beautiful photos. Once again, Bean was spoiled by his future godparents who purchased him a hilarious Australian souvenir – an “iPood” sleeper (spoof on the iPod).

I am both ashamed and proud to admit that I spent the bulk of holiday Monday alternating between sitting on my posterior with a book in hand and passed out sleeping on the sofa. I have a feeling that I’ll be needing more of these siestas during my third trimester; I just now have to convince myself that it’s “okay” to be lazy and that I “should” be taking more breaks on the weekends.

This morning I reluctantly returned to work, feeling as though I needed yet another day of R&R. I had a bit of a scare in the car with hubby, who was thankfully driving me into the office. All of a sudden I was overcome with nausea and hot flashes; it wasn’t long before my vision started blurring, my breathing became shallow and my hearing was off – all the telltale signs of a fainting bout. I almost blacked out but thankfully pulled through with the AC blasting on my face and focusing on getting as much oxygen to my lungs as possible. I’ve been known to have a few fainting spells in the past (vasovagal reactions to the odd needle) but this was a first during pregnancy. Poor hubby was terrified and pulled to the side of the road until I composed myself. I decided to come into to work and write it off as yet another pregnancy symptom that can happen in the third trimester. At any rate, I will mention this to my OBGYN at this week’s prenatal appointment. I suppose it also wouldn’t hurt to have my iron levels checked (while could account for my sudden tiredness over the weekend). I certainly hope fainting doesn’t become common during my last few months of pregnancy – I hate the feeling!

On a happier note, my Father-In-Law is back from vacation and has offered to come over and help hubby install the chair rail in the nursery tomorrow evening. I am positively thrilled that I’ll finally be able to start setting up the crib and organizing some of the room this weekend. I’ll also be happy to have my loft back and not have to negotiate piles of boxes and furniture anytime I want to check an email.