Tuesday, October 31, 2006

happy halloween!

The boys designed the jack-o-lantern faces, and DH carved them on Sunday. This was the first year we've carved pumpkins! In years past, I've always had the boys paint the pumpkins either with tempera or colored Sharpie markers. However, C really wanted carved pumpkins this year, so I went along with it. (Well, I say I went along with it -- but truth be told, I was sleeping the entire time the carving went on.)

They've been counting down the days to Halloween. In our house, it is the start of the season -- 10 days from now is my birthday, then 4 days later is C's, then Thanksgiving, then Advent, then St. Nick's, then Christmas, then New Year's, then Epiphany. We've got a lot of celebrating that will go on in in the next 2 1/2 months!

The boys are both dressing as St. George this year (dragon slaying knight). DH thankfully does not have any late calls, so he'll be able to walk the boys through the neighborhood. They love this tradition, and never even notice when their candy bags are seriously depleted after a week or so! (at least, they haven't in the past. We'll have to see what this year holds.)

I've never been a big fan of Halloween. Our dog goes crazy with all the people coming to the door. I'm not that thrilled with all the people coming to my door! BUT, I know it's fun for so many kids, and I won't spoil their fun. I think it's a shame when people intentionally leave their houses just so they don't have to hand out treats. What's the harm in spending $10 for a couple bags of candy?

Friday, October 27, 2006


I had a regular appointment with my OB today. One thing I like about her office is that she offers child care during your appointment if you need it. Since DH's schedule is so wonky, I like knowing that the boys can go with me, but not have to be part of the appointment.

I'm not that crazy about HER, though. She doesn't have much of a bedside manner - she's sort of aloof. I don't LIKE her, as I did the OB I used with C and N.


She will let me VBAC (vaginal birth after c-section). That in itself keeps me at her practice, since it is hard to find a doctor in AZ these days who will support that. The trend is "once a c-section, always a c-section" and I don't buy into it. N was a VBAC and my recovery was so much better, that I have no desire to schedule surgery to have another babe. (C was an emergency c-section.)

She is not freaking out over my age. Even with N, when I was 34, there was a lot of talk about "advanced maternal age" and how "lucky" I was that I wouldn't turn 35 before he was born. This doctor takes it into stride and while she's monitoring various things - she's not making me feel like I'm a freak because I'm pregnant at 38.

I know (because a friend had her last baby with this doctor) that she is very hands-off and avoids intervention when at all possible. She let my friend go 2 weeks overdue and wasn't panicking even then. She was willing to let her go 2.5 weeks before trying to move things along (but my friend gave birth at 2 weeks, 1 day past her "due" date.) She won't push pitocin or other unnecessary drugs. (I still wonder if the pitocin was one of the factors that made me need an emergency c-section for C.)

For all those reasons, I think I'll stay with her practice. So what if I don't "like" her as much as I want to? I think she'll let me have the kind of birth I want, and that is really more important.

And, today, I got to hear the heartbeat again. The baby's heart was beating away, and the doc said the baby was moving around quite a bit. Both good signs! I'm just over 11 weeks - - so I think I can start to relax and trust in this pregnancy ; )

what have I been up to?

Well, I haven't been updating blogs, that's for sure! LOL!

Yesterday I had the absolute worst dental appointment of my life. It lasted for about 40 minutes and during that time I gagged almost non-stop, cried, had to be strapped down, and thought for sure that I was going to faint before it was over. If a dentist ever tells me again that I need crown lengthening for another tooth, I'm going to tell him to pull the offensive tooth instead. The 2 root canals I had a few weeks ago were better than the 2 crown lengthenings yesterday (and I cried and gagged during that appointment, too -- but not nearly as much.) Part of the problem may be the strong gag reflex I have while pregnant, but it was horrific.

DH was out of town this week attending an awards ceremony for work. He was one of the top salespeople in the country, and they put on quite the shindig for the top people! 4 days of fun, food and awards. He had a wonderful time, but he's always happiest sleeping in his own bed ;) I had thoughts of organizing / de-cluttering while he was gone . . . but didn't do much (okay, ANY) of that. Instead, we did schooling, and that's about it.

On Sunday, we went to the Pumpkin Festival at the botanical gardens which is always fun. N was thrilled to visit the Gardens again, as it is one of his favorite places - and someplace we don't go during the heat of the summer.

Tomorrow we have our 2nd symphony concert. DH missed 3 days of work this week, so he'll work on Saturday and I'll take my sister with the boys. His usual work-week includes Saturdays, but he can ask for the day off when we have something special planned. However, since he missed 3 days of calls, and he is 100% commission, we thought it best that he take any calls that he might have on Saturday.

I'm off in a few minutes for my OB appointment. I'm 11 weeks and I need to talk to her about genetic testing because of my age. I'm not sure if we will have any done or not, but I would like to talk over the options. In 2004, I easily denied any testing, but this time I'm not as confident in my choice to deny all extra testing.

seen around

If I understood correctly -- I bolded the things I've done. Seen at various blogs . . .

01. Bought everyone in the bar a drink
02. Swam with wild dolphins
03. Climbed a mountain
04. Taken a Ferrari for a test drive
05. Been inside the Great Pyramid
06. Held a tarantula
07. Taken a candlelit bath with someone
08. Said “I love you” and meant it
09. Hugged a tree
10. Bungee jumped
11. Visited Paris
12. Watched a lightning storm at sea
13. Stayed up all night long and saw the sun rise
14. Seen the Northern Lights
15. Gone to a huge sports game
16. Walked the stairs to the top of the leaning Tower of Pisa
17. Grown and eaten your own vegetables
18. Touched an iceberg
19. Slept under the stars
20. Changed a baby’s diaper
21. Taken a trip in a hot air balloon
22. Watched a meteor shower
23. Gotten drunk on champagne
24. Given more than you can afford to charity
25. Looked up at the night sky through a telescope
26. Had an uncontrollable giggling fit at the worst possible moment
27. Had a food fight
28. Bet on a winning horse
29. Asked out a stranger
30. Had a snowball fight
31. Screamed as loudly as you possibly can
32. Held a lamb
33. Seen a total eclipse
34. Ridden a roller coaster
35. Hit a home run
36. Danced like a fool and not cared who was looking
37. Adopted an accent for an entire day
38. Actually felt happy about your life, even for just a moment
39. Had two hard drives for your computer
40. Visited all 50 states
41. Taken care of someone who was drunk
42. Had amazing friends
43. Danced with a stranger in a foreign country
44. Watched wild whales
45. Stolen a sign
46. Backpacked in Europe
47. Taken a road-trip
48. Gone rock climbing
49. Midnight walk on the beach
50. Gone sky diving
51. Visited Ireland
52. Been heartbroken longer than you were actually in love
53. In a restaurant, sat at a stranger’s table and had a meal with them
54. Visited Japan
55. Milked a cow
56. Alphabetized your CDs
57. Pretended to be a superhero
58. Sung karaoke
59. Lounged around in bed all day
60. Played touch football
61. Gone scuba diving
62. Kissed in the rain
63. Played in the mud
64. Played in the rain
65. Gone to a drive-in theater
66. Visited the Great Wall of China
67. Started a business
68. Fallen in love and not had your heart broken
69. Toured ancient sites
71. Played D&D for more than 6 hours straight
72. Gotten married
73. Been in a movie
74. Crashed a party
75. Gotten divorced
76. Gone without food for 5 days
77. Made cookies from scratch
78. Won first prize in a costume contest
79. Ridden a gondola in Venice
80. Gotten a tattoo
81. Rafted the Snake River
82. Been on television news programs as an “expert”
83. Got flowers for no reason
84. Performed on stage
85. Been to Las Vegas
86. Recorded music
87. Eaten shark
88. Kissed on the first date
89. Gone to Thailand
90. Bought a house
91. Been in a combat zone
92. Buried one/both of your parents
93. Been on a cruise ship
94. Spoken more than one language fluently
95. Performed in Rocky Horror
96. Raised children
97. Followed your favorite band/singer on tour
99. Taken an exotic bicycle tour in a foreign country
100. Picked up and moved to another city to just start over
101. Walked the Golden Gate Bridge
102. Sang loudly in the car, and didn’t stop when you knew someone was looking
103. Had plastic surgery
104. Survived an accident that you shouldn’t have survived
105. Wrote articles for a large publication
106. Lost over 100 pounds
107. Held someone while they were having a flashback
108. Piloted an airplane
109. Touched a stingray
110. Broken someone’s heart
111. Helped an animal give birth
112. Won money on a T.V. game show
113. Broken a bone
114. Gone on an African photo safari
115. Had a facial part pierced other than your ears
116. Fired a rifle, shotgun, or pistol
117. Eaten mushrooms that were gathered in the wild
118. Ridden a horse
119. Had major surgery
120. Had a snake as a pet
121. Hiked to the bottom of the Grand Canyon
122. Slept for more than 30 hours over the course of 48 hours
123. Visited more foreign countries than U.S. states
124. Visited all 7 continents
125. Taken a canoe trip that lasted more than 2 days
126. Eaten kangaroo meat
127. Eaten sushi
128. Had your picture in the newspaper
129. Changed someone’s mind about something you care deeply about
130. Gone back to school
131. Parasailed
132. Touched a cockroach
133. Eaten fried green tomatoes
134. Read The Iliad
135. Selected one “important” author who you missed in school, and read
136. Killed and prepared an animal for eating
137. Skipped all your school reunions
138. Communicated with someone without sharing a common spoken language
139. Been elected to public office
140. Written your own computer language
141. Thought to yourself that you’re living your dream
142. Had to put someone you love into hospice care
143. Built your own PC from parts
144. Sold your own artwork to someone who didn’t know you
145. Had a booth at a street fair
146. Dyed your hair
147. Been a DJ
148. Shaved your head
149. Caused a car accident
150. Saved someone’s life

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Thanks, Rachel!

Rachel, I want to thank you for taking the time and effort to post your recipes! A good friend follows gluten free for her 5 boys, and I was trying to figure out what to make for an upcoming party. I want to make goodies that don't have to be separate from the other treats -- I want to make things everyone can enjoy.

Your recipe pages came to the rescue! I tried to email you -- but, well it's a long story and I couldn't get your email address. (still trying to get used to my new mac) So, thank you very much! I'm sure I can fill a table with treats that all will enjoy and nobody will feel "different".

the smell of clean

After a couple false starts, a cleaning person showed up today.

2 hours later and my house smells and looks fabulous!!!

DH was mortified earlier when there was still clutter laying around - but I didn't care! Someone was coming to HELP ME!!

She did a super job and I just picked up clutter and organized while she was here. Just the fact that I didnt' have to do it all myself was enough to motivate me to get more done than I have in weeks!

I feel so much better right now and the house looks so much better. She is a tad pricey, but worth every penny in my book.

I know there are those who think "Hey! You stay at home! Clean your own house!" and others who take pride in how well they can keep house. And, if you can keep up with your house and be happy with it - then more power to you! I realize that I can't, and I'm not ashamed to ask for help. PLUS, my house is clean again! WOOO HOOOO WOOOO HOOOO!!!!

Sunday, October 15, 2006

clenched fists

I clench my fists when I'm stressed, nervous, worried, etc. Amazingly enough, it's something I have likely always done but was never aware of until a friend pointed it out to me while I was in college. We were looking at pictures from our trip to Europe and he said "And there you are with your fists clenched again!" And I replied "What? What are talking about?" and he explained to me that I always clench my fists when I'm worked up.

And he was right! I never noticed it before then, but he made me aware of it and I tried to be more aware of it and let my fists go.

Lately, I'm not sure if I'm doing it more -- or if I'm more aware for some reason. I find myself in bed with my fists are clenched tight . . . sometimes all it takes is a conscious decision to relax them to let me fall asleep. I find myself sitting on the couch watching TV; and my fists are clenched tight.

I'm trying to let go . . . relax . . . and trust . . . and be at peace. Now if only my hands would get with the program!

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

what have we been up to?

On Saturday, we attended the first in a series of family concerts by the Phoenix Symphony. This concert was all Beethoven and we had a wonderful time! Before the concert, they set up areas for the kids to try out different instruments, get balloon animals, watch a children's drum troupe, participate with the conductor, do a craft . . . and probably a few other things as well!

Our tickets are in the 2nd row, center section. The concert itself lasted about an hour - which is the perfect length of time for kids. The boys loved the symphony, and I loved being able to experience live music with my entire family. The prices were pretty amazing, too -- I paid less than $200 for the 4 of us to attend the 5 concerts in the series. We realized the new baby will likely be here for the last concert, but I don't imagine a newborn snuggled in a sling will take much notice!

Oh, and the conductor was lovely! He was very involved with the kids and was available after the concert as well as people were leaving. He seems wonderful.

Other than that, we've gone out to eat a few times (much more than I wish we would -- but planning and preparing meals seems to be impossible for me at the moment.) We've done some schooling - keeping up pretty well with nature journals, reading and math. I would like to get back on track with the art projects and I need to work with Nate on his letter recognition.

Monday I had 2 root canals. Ouch. I'm still sore / sensitive, but honestly, it's not that bad. I've taken Tylenol for the pain, which didn't do much the day after, but it's helping today.

I'm still feeling pukey and tired, but I admit that seeing the heartbeat did a lot for my attitude.

I'm still trying to find cleaning help. It's much more difficult to find what I want, at a price we can afford -- but I'm still looking.

We've decided to pour another patio near the pool, since our table and chairs couldn't fit very well on the deck that was poured. We also need to order all the rock to be spread around the pool area and then I think we should be finished over there!

I'd like to get some plants at the Botanical Garden's plant sale this weekend for my garden on the other side, but I'm not sure if I'll make it. We'll see. That area needs to be thouroughly cleaned again -- weeded and rubbish removed and rocks spread over there, too.

I'm also planning a Halloween party for the boys. We've held one the last 3 years, so it's become a bit of a tradition. I'm still debating how big to have it . . . I'd like to keep it small, but I'm not sure how small I'll be able to keep it? More thoughts and planning need to go into that.

And I'm sleeping a lot. More than I thought possible. But, I'm sure it's all needed, and I'm hoping for a burst of energy in a few weeks!

Thursday, October 05, 2006


Yep! I saw and heard the heartbeat today ;) The babe has grown as expected (actually, a few days ahead of schedule) and we could see the heart beating a healthy 180 bpm. It was a very happy appointment!

Unfortunately, DH couldn't be there -- but the boys were with me and Nate says "Whew! No angel in there! It's still alive!"

The picture to the left is one of the pics the technician gave me. Can you see the face? Amazing to me the detail already at 8 weeks. The lab I went to also does 4D ultrasounds, and that picture was from a brief 4D scan she did. The standard scans just look like a blob ;) But, a blob with a heartbeat!!!!!!

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

September's Reading List

My list is pretty long this month, which is indicative of how I've been feeling. Not feeling well = more time to read.

(*) The Garlic Ballads by Yan Mo. this book was disjointed, brutal, confusing and depressing.

(***) Good Women: 3 Novellas by Jane Stevenson. The first 2 novellas in this book were so-so, but I thoroughly enjoyed the 3rd one. The first was about adulterers, the 2nd was about a woman who saw angels and then somehow believed it was okay to kill her husband(?) and the 3rd was about an older woman being forced from her home by her daughter-in-law. (she triumphs in the end - the mom, not the DIL)

(*****) Letters on an Elk Hunt by Elinor Pruitt Stewart. Just as enjoyable as the last book read by this author.

(**) Rug Merchant by Meg Mullins. Eh . . . not much else to say

(**) At Risk by Patricia Cornwell. She's written much better books than this one.

(****) The Birthdays: A Novel by Heidi Pitler. Wonderful character development! Great portrayal of family dynamics.

(***) Cage of Stars by Jacquelyn Mitchard. I didn't want to like this book because I'm not a big fan of Mitchard and I knew M*rm*ns were the main character in this book. However, it was a good story. I just wish she hadn't made the main character marry a Catholic at the end and make the assumption that he would convert (which he would have had to do if they married in the temple).

(***) Lost Gardens: English Garden Mystery by Anthony Elgin. Fun mystery set in the English countryside.

(*****) Wyoming Wedding by Nancy Parra. Historical, Old West romance. Very fun and well-done! Not a big fan of most romances, but this one inspired me to go check out 2 more of her books from the library and I wasn't disappointed with those either!

(****) Prince of Beverly Hills by Stuart Wood. fast-paced, 1930's settting, fun

(*****) 12 Sharp by Janet Evanovich. FUN! Love her Stephanie Plum series

(****) A Place Called Trinity by Delia Parr. Midwifery in the 1800's. good read

(****) Death du jour by Lou Jane Temple. One of the spice box mystery books -- set in revolutionary France.

(*****) Bettin' Kind by Nancy Parra. Another Morgan family romance. Fun!

(*****) Marryin' Kind by Nancy Parra. Yet another Morgan family romance.

Monday, October 02, 2006

not sure what to post

I'm in a funny space at the moment and so haven't been blogging. Truth to tell, I haven't been doing much of ANYTHING at all lately. I've been wracked with nausea for about 20 hours a day, and have been extremely short of breath. Thanks to google (and my doctor) I understand that shortness of breath is a normal early pregnancy symptom . . . but it's not one I've experienced before. I remember being short of breath LATE in my pregnancies before, but never early.

I tell myself that maybe all these hormones raging through me means that this baby is a girl -- but I know that each pregnancy is different, regardless of the baby's sex. Truth be told, another boy would be simpler in many ways. Not that I'd mind a girl. I really don't have a preference - although my boys have both expressed their desire to have a sister. They tell me that they already HAVE a brother! LOL

I am also telling myself that all these symptoms are good signs that we're looking at a successful pregnancy, but I'm scared and nervous. Yes, I know that worrying doesn't change a thing! Intellectually I know a lot of things. But, when I started having a panic attack the other day while driving on the freeway -- I knew that my body isn't paying any freakin' attention to my intellect. I'm really not looking forward to going through panic attacks again . . .

I have another ultrasound on Thursday. I should be 8 weeks at that point, and we should see a heartbeat, and lots of growth since 3 weeks ago. I'm hoping that we see all that I hope on Thursday, and I can calm down a bit. But . . . I saw a heartbeat last pregnancy, too . . . and then the baby died over a week later.

I don't want to spend this pregnancy in fear. I am trying to pray and ask for peace. I am trying to let go of my worries, and control the things I can control. I am trying. I am trying. I am trying.
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