Saturday, December 31, 2011

36 Week Update

Just wanted to give an update since I haven't been in here all week to do so.

Lots has been going on recently because baby girl is breech. My stress level is much lower than a couple weeks ago but this hasn't changed her position, yet. I'm staying optimistic. Here are the updates..

Tuesday we had an ultrasound to confirm her position. The ultrasound tech was.. short. She didn't give us an estimate of how much the baby weighed and she didn't talk much other then answering the questions we had like, "what are we looking at?" etc. Big difference from our 19 week anatomy scan.

It must've been a busy day because we went back out to the lobby for at least 20 minutes, then went back to an exam room for the normal OB appointment and waited almost another 20 minutes. A (midwife/nurse practitioner, I do not know which) came in and said she just reviewed our scans. It had to be a midwife, why would a NP be reviewing our scans?? Regardless, she did not review them WITH us. She barely even mentioned them other than saying yes, the baby is breech.. we knew this because we were there at the ultrasound, obviously. Needless to say, this midwife was not helpful in the least. She asked us if we knew about ECV (External Cephalic Version where they can try to manually turn the baby) and tried to get us to schedule one for the following week and then talked c-section a little bit and said we should schedule that too. We were pretty taken aback. First of all, I thought midwives were supposed to have options of things to do to keep labor/delivery as natural as possible. Second of all, she couldn't answer ANY of the questions we had regarding the ECV or having a breech baby. Needless to say, we were pretty irritated after leaving there but we did schedule a consult with an actual OB for Friday.

Thursday, I went to see Laurel's mom who is a Chiropractor so we could start doing the Webster Technique to get me aligned so that the baby has a better chance of flipping. This went well and I felt more relaxed afterward which was a positive sign.

Friday morning bright and early we headed to the consult with the OB. We (again) waited a long time, which seems so abnormal compared to my previous visits, but the OB was very friendly and seemed like he would've spent more than an hour with us if we wanted which was comforting. He told us that they would not do a scheduled c-section prior to 39 weeks and we would try (if we decide to) the ECV right before the c-section to see if we could get any movement. He was very helpful and informative. One thing however is that he said he will not force the baby during the ECV, if she does not want to turn around, he is not going to 'force' her more than she is willing. We have a 2nd opinion consult with another OB in the practice this coming friday to talk about the same thing (which was suggested by this OB). It was comforting to hear that we don't need to schedule the c-section until after 39 weeks (if it comes to that) and that the baby still has plenty of time to turn naturally, something the midwife did not say ONE TIME! We left the appointment feeling better. We're almost 100% sure that we will be trying the ECV prior to going on with a c-section.

This morning, Saturday, I had another appointment at Dr. Kegel's for another adjustment to stay aligned. Baby girl moves around a lot and has been teetering to the transverse position so I think she's just prepping herself to make the big turn. Staying optimistic. I have also been relaxing a lot more on my sides and drinking more water at the doctor's suggestion.

Everything else, not breech related, is going well. The OB said the baby is the average size currently so not too big or too small or anything. I got all of the baby stuff organized this past week and with the help of Nick and Laurel we have the pack n play set up and the carseat/stroller ready to go. I need to focus on packing a bag though and getting the small stuff taken care of. This coming week at work is going to be quite busy as I tie up loose ends prior to leaving for maternity leave.

I think i'm still in a bit of denial that we're 3 weeks or less away from having a baby girl. We're very excited and cannot wait to meet her but it's definitely one of those things where you don't believe it until it's happening. I have not had any false contractions (probably because she isn't sitting in my pelvis head first) which is a positive because then I probably won't go into labor but I have no idea what i'm in for.

The next couple weeks are probably going to be pretty crazy but we're going to try to keep it as relaxed as possible and spend a lot of time together since pretty soon we won't be alone anymore.

Please keep your fingers crossed for us that she does make the turn to head down. We'll keep everyone in the loop if she does flip! That will be an exciting moment which will be followed by me doing about a million jumping jacks so that she gets wedged in there and can't flip back!

Hope everyone has a safe and happy new year!

Saturday, December 24, 2011

10 Things :: Link Up :: Volume 3

Hope everyone has a safe and happy holiday! I am off work until January 3rd! woo hoo!

1 :: Christmas

I cannot believe it's christmas weekend. Time in December has almost literally flown by. I had a lot of christmas stuff to accomplish at the beginning of the week and got most of it done last night. Final gifts and finishing the wrapping of those gifts make the tree complete. We can't wait to spend the weekend with our families and celebrate this awesome time of year. Next year will be even more exciting with a little one and I'm sure we'll be thinking about that a lot this year as we go through our days!

2 :: Baby

After posting Do I Have a Breech Baby? the other day I'm feeling less stressed about the situation. I honestly feel that the midwife was wrong and that I am right and I'm going to go ahead and trust my instinct on this. I slept like a baby last night and I attribute that to the fact that I wasn't worrying. Less than 5 weeks to go!

3 :: The Holidays at Work

This tends to bring out the goodies, aka sugar. It's really good that I didn't do any baking this year. On Tuesday we had cake twice in one day! I didn't have the 2nd piece. It will be very nice to have the week following Christmas off of work to focus on baby stuff for a while and try to prep as much as possible so I can relax the last three weeks before her due date.

4 :: Ping Pong

We are just LOVING the ping pong table that Alex's parents got to keep at our house for holidays and get togethers. Sunday night, I beat Alex in best of 7 .. which is super surprising because he is really good at ping pong. I guess this just means that I'm getting better! We need to get all the ping pong playing in that we can before baby girl comes, I don't think we'll have much time for that after she arrives. We're looking forward to this weekend as well when Alex's family comes in so we can have another tournament or two or three or four!!!!

5 :: Maternity Picture

I'll just throw one of these in here. I've already prepped a post to go up on Monday with more pictures from our entire shoot. I cannot share them before Christmas because of a gift sensitive matter. We are still super excited with how they turned out though.

6 :: Pinterest

I've recently dabbled less in the world of Pinterest. The craziness of the holidays have just sent me in a different direction. However I have some new pins I would like to share!

- Pin1 - Pin2 - Pin3 - Pin4 -

Doesn't Pin 1 look like a blast for a little boy? Pin 2 is candy.. yep.. candy jewels! Pin 3 just looks really easy and cute! And Pin 4 is an awesome idea for any party to get pictures of all of your guests!

7 :: Nursery Prints

I am loving this print I found through another pin from pinterest. I don't know yet if it will fit in the nursery but if I could get it in a magenta/purple mix, it just might. I might have to do a variation of my own and print it myself. We'll see how it goes. But isn't it sweet?

8 :: Christmas with children

Just a random idea that I'm sure there's a pin for but I have yet to see it. 12 days of christmas for kids. A countdown with gifts starting 12 days before christmas. Could be easy if you find really small trinkets or what not to give them multiples of.

9 :: Slow Burn

This throat burn is going to be the death of me. And that's all I'm going to say.

10 :: Happy Holidays

I'll say it again, Happy Holidays! This is the best time of year. Five days after Christmas I will celebrate turning 27 followed by a sure to be awesome New Years Eve! 2012 is going to be the best yet!

Friday, December 23, 2011

Photo Dump

This begins with Thanksgiving (GASP!) i know.. sorry it's so late. :)

Next up, Christmas Tree hunting!!

Random Stuff like making Homemade Marshmallows, our decorated Christmas Tree
and our contribution to the McHenry Christmas Party!

Lastly, a bare belly! I had Alex take this for documentation of 35 weeks!

Thursday, December 22, 2011

5 weeks left.. whhat?

Please excuse the poor lighting and lack of tree skirt!
Can anyone even believe that there are 5 weeks or less until I hold a baby girl in my arms that Alex and I made? We kinda can't!

She's supposed to be the weight of a honeydew melon this week. So that's about 5 lbs or so. And still working around 18 or 19 inches long. She's very active and though she makes it a little uncomfortable to change positions while sleeping, she's totally worth it.

What else is happening? Well, I still haven't really organized the stuff we got from the baby shower. I need to figure out where to put things.. like how to store all the hooded towels and tiny wash clothes (my bathroom or hers?) how to organize the clothing in the closet/dresser, where to put the gear we won't use for a couple of months, etc. It's all quietly sitting in the living room sorted into different bags while I sit in another room writing thank you notes (over halfway done!).

Sunday, my first attempt at using homemade stencils on the wall didn't go quite as planned. Spray adhesive is quite sticky if you didn't know. Therefore, I am letting them dry for a while and I will attempt it again later this week. I also wish they sold tiny bottles of spray paint (do they?) and I also might succumb to a white paint marker. This doesn't solve the problem for the pink flowers but i'll cross that bridge when I come to it! I still think it's going to turn out really nice. Also Sunday, Alex and I hung up the shelf and the butterfly frame which is pretty exciting. I need to print a couple of images for the other smaller frames I have but I already know what I'm going to print, which makes it easier. Not too much left to do in the Nursery other than organize and set it all up the way we want.

Last night we 'watched' that Ricki Lake documentary, The Business of being Born. I say 'watched' because we were doing other things while it was on the TV (like writing thank you notes for me and the hunting app for Alex). I went into it knowing that it was a documentary that would try to express the negative connotations associated with giving birth in a hospital as opposed to a home birth. Intervention (such as medication) vs No Intervention. I took it all with a grain of salt. I did learn some interesting facts and it will probably have a small influence on the way I want my birth plan to go (as much as I can control anyway). For instance, I definitely want to steer clear of drugs as much as possible. I am allowing the option of getting an epidural at some point if it becomes unbearable but I hope I don't have to go there. From the way the documentary showed, the nurses are all about speeding up your labor through medical intervention, etc.. If all goes as kind of planned, I won't even be heading to the hospital until the pain is unbearable (unless something weird happens like my water breaks and it's been 24 hours or something and I'm still not progressing) which will leave little room for them to even need to progress the labor for me using drugs. A main thing I want to be able to do is be up and moving around. I don't want to be lying in a hospital bed in pain. I want to be moving and I don't want to deliver a baby lying on my back without the help of gravity. This is all probably a little bit TMI but who's blog is this?

Anyway, she's still growing and I'm still feeling good (other than the stress of whether or not she's breech). I can definitely stand being pregnant another 5 weeks so keep on cooking baby girl!

Life without DirecTV

Welp, we did it.

We recently got rid of DirecTV and switched to only streaming. We're starting with Netflix and Hulu Plus.

In our first week without actual TV.. we didn't missed it. Possibly because we were too busy cleaning. But this is the life we'll probably lead once baby girl arrives. No time for TV, at least not live TV, only time for streaming episodes of things we've missed. Therefore this is perfect.

Let me break it down cost wise so you can see the differences.

DirecTV for the choice package, plus HD, plus DVR was a little over $100 a month.

Verizon DSL was $39.99/month.

Total: about $140/mo

Now, we're with Comcast internet at the intro rate of $29.99/mo for 6 months and Netflix which after the trial will cost $7.99/mo and Hulu Plus which is $7.99/mo.

New Total: $46

Therefore we went from $140/mo to about $46/mo .. savings? About $100. Cha-ching!

Something we need to decide though is how we plan to stream this. Currently we're using my iPad. We're not sure if we're going to get another box that can stream it for us (like a PS3/Roku/GoogleTV) because they all have different features and we're just not sure enough to purchase anything. All we know is, this is working out so far. We watch far less TV and it's just been great.

One tiny struggle is, we don't know if we'll keep Netflix instant streaming after the trial or switch to the DVD by mail service. The instant streaming doesn't really have much more we want to watch. Alex will be finishing Sons of Anarchy soon and we already watched most of the Party Down series. I know there's more out there but I just can't get into it for some reason. We'll see what happens.

Into the future we go..

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Do i have a breech baby??

At my 34 week appointment, the midwife was having a tough time determining whether the baby was breech or not. She concluded that she was. All that time, I thought it was her butt in the air but the midwife said it was her head.

This has caused me a lot of stress over the past week. I have been working daily with different positions to try to get that big bump to move around to the 'correct' spot. I think about it constantly. Good thing I don't worry about other things like this.. I can't imagine a life filled with worry.

Regardless, since I am worried.. I have been reading a lot about position and movement and how to tell what position your baby is in. Almost all signs point to head down even though the midwife concluded breech.

#1 hiccups- These are and have been for the most part in the lower left side of my tummy. Hiccups come from the mouth and though they do tend to shake her whole body if I watch, I always put my hand down low to feel them on the outside. This makes me think that's where her head is when she's hiccuping, aka head down.

#2 rib kicking- These could not possibly come from her hands punching me. She kicks or moves up there and it feels like she's trying to get her feet stuck between my ribs. The only way her legs could be up there is if she's head down.

#3 lower belly movement- This is not common. If her feet were down there and she were actually breech, I do believe I would feel the kicking that is associated with that. Mostly all I feel are small flutters, which i'm assuming are her hands. Again, this points to head down.

#4 anterior placenta- My placenta is in the front on the left hand side. This could make it difficult for the doctor/midwife to locate where she is. It's obvious that she hasn't 'dropped' or settled into my pelvis yet but I think I would know when that would happen (breech or not) because of the pressure, which I did feel a couple of weeks ago.

One week from today, I will have an ultrasound to tell us whether she is head down or not. That is the only way we'll know for sure. I'm really hoping that the midwife was wrong and she has been head down all along. If that's the case then this has caused a lot of unnecessary stress but if it isn't the case and the midwife was right, at least I have been working on it for the past two weeks and not just sitting around accepting it.

Friday, December 16, 2011

10 Things :: Link Up :: Volume 2

I might just have to make this link up thing a regular gig. I mean, why not?

In no certain order:

1 :: An apology (to myself and anyone who reads)

I'm sorry that I have been slacking in the blogging area as of late. These past two weeks have been uber busy and I haven't had much lunch time free at work to write a post or two. I will do my best to write more. Pinky promise.

2 :: Finally, a pediatrician

We have chosen one and it feels so good to have that out of the way. Interesting tid bit though, they don't require you to have any paperwork or anything done prior to your child's birth. All I have to do is tell the hospital "Lancaster Pediatrics is my pediatrician" and they send someone over and then I'm guessing that's when you schedule the next appointment and fill out paperwork. To be honest (and we might be bad parents for this) we didn't go and meet them prior to deciding. We're pretty laid back people and we had lots of good ped doc recommendations that we figured if someone else likes them so will we. Also, we can change ped doc's if this one doesn't pan out.

3 :: Holiday Dinners // Parties

This week is filled with holiday dinners with friends and family. Boy do I love going out to eat, and well, just eating, so sharing these activities with people we love is just icing on the cake.

Monday we dined at Iron Hill with the Hix's and Herr's. We're all pregnant (or we were all pregnant until last night, one of us is no longer pregnant, congrats Matt and Britt! I know you're reading this even though you just had a baby, haha yeah right!) Anyway, dinner was filled with chit chat about pregnancy/baby stuff with a little bit of guy cabin talk splashed in. Those men are crazy. We also effectively shut down their effort to go next door for a crappy beer, only to leave us at the table with the checks. Silly husbands.

Last night, Thursday, we had the Van Wyen clan over for dinner as well as the rest of Alex's family. We cooked our free turkey that I got with my bonus points from Giant (thanks, mom! -we're on the same bonus plan so her points are my points and vice versa). It was a Shady Brook and it was already in a brine in the bag. This is the way to go, people! No work in brining what-so-ever! It might've been the juiciest turk-a-lurk we've ever had. No gravy necessary (but of course we had some). It was so nice to catch up with them, and Matt and Marci who have been in Oregon studying it up in graduate school. There were tons of laughs all around and it was a close to perfect evening!

Tonight we're heading up to the Davis' house to have dinner with them and the Snyders and see baby Addilyn! We're so excited about this. She was looking totally adorbs at my baby shower and I just want to squeeze her (gently).

Saturday we're headed to the McHenry's (now) Annual Christmas party. Sure to be a blast. I can already taste the delicious food that I will be eating there. Plus, I found the perfect swap gift that better arrive in the mail today!

4 :: Baby Shower Goods

So now that i've had the opportunity to go through the things we received at the baby shower, we have a small pile of exchangables that I have been waiting to make a trip to good ol' Target with. With the busy-ness of this week, no such luck. I'm struggling a little bit with where to put things/store things/how to organize things. This might wait until the week I have off after Christmas so that I have more time to figure it out.

5 :: Baby Shiz

I've decided that I'm going to be making my own baby sling, like this one. For more than one reason.. A. way too expensive to buy for a piece of fabric and two rings.. even on Etsy. and B. it looks convenient and I found some nice jersey stretchy fabric to use in a lovely purple color. I've also decided that I won't be purchasing one of those hooter hider things that you put around your neck when you're breastfeeding. I'm going with something more like this. I mean, it's really just a piece of fabric with a hole for your head to go through. And I couldn't pass up the flannel-ish pink hounds tooth fabric I found for it. I will post about these when they're completed.. which will have to be the week after Christmas.

6 :: Daycare

This morning actually, we had an appointment to tour a day care facility that was pretty close to our house. Now it's my hope that I can work out my schedule with my place of work so that I can move to part time for a while and maybe even work from home a bit so that we don't have to go full on full time day care. The center was nice. Honestly, a little messy and it smelled like onions and diapers. The ladies in the infant room seemed caring though so that was nice but it kind of broke my heart. Please don't judge me because I know that day care is the only option for some people and it's really one of our only options but the thought of dropping my child off to other people, that are currently strangers, for more than a 15 minute time period was just too much to handle. Therefore, when we left, I cried. Looking back on it now, we definitely need to look at some other places because I think maybe the atmosphere there (or something) was just off-putting. The people were very nice and it's also totally possible that I completely underestimated how emotional looking at day cares would make me. Oh, and i'm pregnant by the way (obv) so maybe my hormones are a little wack? There's a first time for everything, right? So the plan is to look at some other ones too and get a better idea of what we're looking for / what we're comfortable with.

7 :: Christmas

Let's get back to focusing on what's really important right now. Christmas. (i'm so funny). Anyway, I get a kick out of tracking the packages that I've ordered every morning. I'm tired of things coming from California via USPS though. Takes for-ev-er. Next week will consist of wrapping gifts and cleaning the house for visitors. Also, something exciting (for me anyway) is that I'll be eating a Christmas Ham two days in a row. Real ham, people. Not water packed ham. Real -straight from the piggy- ham. I'll probably even get to have it two different ways. This is a christmas miracle in my book. The gift of real ham, two days in a row is all I could ever ask for. I will take a picture with each ham to mark the occasion.

How sad is it that i'm really excited about ham?? wait, don't answer that because if you say it's sad, i'll just assume that you're jealous!

Oh and Christmas is only 9 days away. Did I just rock your world? Each day, I think about this and each day, my own world is rocked... hard.

8 :: Baby Update

The little darling is just living it up, breech style. Most people who know me personally know that I don't really get stressed out very much. I don't worry about things that I cannot control, it's a waste of time and energy. Having said that.. this is stressing me out! If she could just turn and stay there I wouldn't want anything else for christmas (except ham, obviously). However, I do know that if she flips/turns.. it's totally possible that she could just flip/turn back to breech at any time. I am also aware that we have tons of time (so they say). I'm only 34 weeks and 4 days. My next appointment where thye'll do the ultrasound is on the 27th. That's 12 days away. Then i'll only be 36 weeks and a day. Still another couple weeks for her to turn around and face the ideal direction. I would've been much better off assuming that the thing I was feeling was a baby booty and not her head. Why did they have to tell me?? What's the point of this paragraph? Oh yeah, to stop stressing and give a baby update! She's doing good! She moves a lot.. she does bladder dances.. she hiccups, normal baby stuff.

9 :: Breastfeeding

If you don't want to read about babies eating from boobs, skip this paragraph. I had a BF class on Tuesday evening that was super informative. How is there so much to know about breastfeeding? Luckily they gave us a booklet that had all the information discussed for when I promptly forget it. All I know is, the whole nip goes into the mouth basically, like eating a big hamburger from Red Robin that you don't think will fit into your mouth, but you make it fit. I wish I could insert the animation they showed in the class. Interesting stuff, I tell ya. This is where I'll stop talking about it.. I don't want to bore/gross anyone out. Oh wait, I probably already did.

10 :: Congrats!

I can't believe you made it the whole way to number 10! Through all of my rambling and almost zero pictures! Good for you! Also, i'll share this congrats paragraph with new baby girl, Harper Hix. I hope we get to go see her today or tomorrow. I still have a hard time believing that I'm growing a baby but this is proof that there really was a baby in there! We're so excited for Matt and Britt and just know they're going to be kick butt parents!

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

It's Christmas Time!

I absolutely cannot believe that Christmas is in 11 days. These last couple weeks at work have been so busy that it makes the days fly even faster than normal.

We put up our Christmas tree this past Saturday and I don't have any formal (as in not iphone) photos of it yet but here are a couple of the tree and ornaments that we made at craft night last Friday night!

Wow, blurry! We got a canaan tree and it looks so good that it looks fake. I will try to replace this with a real photo soon!

There's so much you can do with empty glass ornaments!
I love this one!


How pretty are these babies? I hope they last all month!

Alex and I have a little more shopping to do for the holiday but we're almost finished! Then I need to get to wrapping! I can't wait until next year when we have a little one to share Christmas with. Then Santa will officially start coming to our house and I'll probably have to be way more organized. Things will definitely be different next year (in a good way!)

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

6 weeks to go!

Yesterday was officially 34 weeks!

I'm feeling good and my throat burn has subsided a bit since Friday, which is a relief. I think baby girl has changed positions though and the doctor should be able to tell me in a little bit at my appointment. I will update this afterward.

UPDATE: I was right. Baby girl is currently breech. The midwife gave me some positions to get her to move around and in two weeks when I go back they'll do an ultrasound to see where she is. This of course negates the need to ask why, again (mentioned in the paragraph below). I'm not currently going to worry about her being breech and i'll save that for two weeks from now if she still is. All I can do is encourage her to turn and remember that there is plenty of time for this to happen :) I really liked the midwife I saw today, Claire. She was very nice and informative and personable. Send good baby turning vibes my way over the next two weeks! We want this little one to be head down!

From what the websites say, she's about 4 3/4 pounds and about 18 inches long. I didn't ask last time why they don't do a final ultrasound but I think I might attempt that again today. Just to know about the umbilical cord and where it's located. That's really the only thing that I'm worried about (unless of course she becomes breech in the next 6 weeks).

Looks like I have a watermelon in there!
The bump is getting bigger but doesn't feel overly huge yet. Sleeping is a bit of a pain and I'm getting bored sleeping on my sides. I've experienced some of the leg cramps (mostly in my calf muscles.... even though i'm positive there aren't any actual muscles there) that have woken me up in the middle of the night or early morning and forced me to stand up to correct/relax them. Other issues are bending over to put on socks and shoes (even while sitting it's difficult) and climbing into my car is tricky at times.

This past Sunday we had our baby shower thrown by my mother. She is amazing. She made all of the food (which was a lot) and has done so much for us throughout this process. I hope I can be half the mother she is! My sisters helped as well which was nice too. They're the best!

Alex did not accompany me but he felt the blessings when I returned home with a car packed with baby goods. I had such a nice time seeing everyone. I wish I would've had more time to go around and chat with people though. Everything moved so quickly. I have decided that I really enjoy organizing and throwing such parties but I don't really enjoy being the focal point of them. It was a lot to have everyone (or almost everyone) looking at me while opening a million gifts. I do thank everyone for coming though, it was very special to have everyone there and I just know that baby brubaker will be loved by so many people!

Here are some pictures of shower related stuff. Sorry for the poor iphone quality. I haven't gotten the other pictures from my dad's camera or my aunt's (but I know they took some good pics!) so I'll have to update this when I have those as well. For now, this is just stuff that I helped to make for the shower because I couldn't help myself. :)

A couple of cookie in a jar prizes!

Hot Chocolate on a Stick from Pinterest and this website

Alex was so nice to help me wrap these up!

A baby bomb went off in my living room :) Please excuse the ill placed couch.
Anyway, that's all for now. It's doctor appointment time!

Friday, December 9, 2011

10 Things :: Link Up

I thought I would give this a go, mostly because I haven't posted since.. Monday (oopsie!) and lots has been going on this week that I can tell you about, mostly. I'll go in order from most exciting to probably least.

1 :: The Nursery Wall

I don't know when I got this idea (weeks ago) exactly. But I sketched it on the wall a couple of Sundays ago and this past week I got around to painting. It must've been Monday that I did the bottom half and I finished it up last night. Oh.. I didn't tell you what I'm doing (yes i did) but here are the deets which are vague so that I can surprise you all at the end with my masterpiece (bahaha). Basically, I found a wall stencil on pinterest that would go perfectly in the nursery. No i will not link to it and ruin the surprise. I decided that instead of spending $128 of money I do not have to spend on a wall stencil/decal.. I'm actually not sure which it is.. I would just do it myself with a pencil and then my own homemade stencils and of course, paint. Things are going swimmingly. The part that I finished was the tree and next up are the flowers, followed by some birds (maybe, undecided).

2 :: Nesting

So I guess I'm ready to admit that I have been nesting a little. Last week, we cleaned to our little hearts content (I still haven't posted that post.. I don't know if I will.. it just screams boring!) This week, I have been making favors for the baby shower my awesome mother is throwing me (and letting me be a part of in terms of planning and making things. I had to make things from pinterest, had to!) I will definitely show you what I did after the guests have their favors. I'm also going to be making 2 of the game prizes later today! Anyway.. back to the nesting. I baked cookies this week as well. Choc. Chip and Oatmeal Craisin. That was Wednesday night. Luckily, Alex has been making dinner lately so I don't even have to think about doing that. I just have a bunch of energy and I need to expend it. I also cannot get enough water sometimes.. soo thirsty!

3 :: Revenge

Since getting rid of DirecTV and switching to just streaming Netflix and Hulu. Our time in front of the boob tube has dramatically declined. I call this "Winning" .. and really with all the stuff I have to do, I don't have time for TV anyway! BUT.. a show called Revenge started up this year and I wanted to check it out but couldn't really fit it into my existing TV lineup (which no longer exists). But when we got Hulu, the whole season so far is on there, ready for us to watch. So we started it on Wednesday and then watched two episodes yesterday. We are hooked. I love gossip girl and everything but this is just more mature.. and twisty and unpredictable. Check it out if you haven't yet. This is an official recommendation. In Alex news, he now watches Sons of Anarchy while I go about my nesting activities. UGH i'm not going to call it nesting anymore, i'm not a bird!

4 :: Baby Shower

I probably know way more about my shower than the average guest of honor at her baby shower but I'm nosy and my mom is gracious. Regardless, I'm super pumped about it. We have already gotten a few gifts from family members who cannot attend and they've been so generous. We got the Sony Bloggie HD video camera which is so freaking awesome and a Temporal Artery Thermometer, which is basically the same that they use at doctor's offices instead of a rectal or ear thermometer. Both things are so needed and we're so thankful to have received them. I'm already preparing myself to be overwhelmed by the love we receive from the shower. Baby girl is super lucky to have friends and family like she does!

5 :: Christmas Wish List

I almost did a post on this the other day but did not have time to do it properly, so I will just tell you a little bit about my wish list and what's on it.
Hair Dryer- This is so needed. Plus I read through researching that I don't need to get a $300 one to make my hair look nice.
Cookie Sheets- I need to update mine and the ones I want are from Williams-Sonoma. Love that place.
Workout Clothes- I want some legit workout clothes. I have shorts and t-shirts but I want to get serious about it so that after this baby is born I can focus on getting my body back (in a normal amount of time) while looking super cute!
Robe- This is needed mostly for labor/delivery plus waddling around the house afterward while not wanting to actually get dressed. What could be better?
BellyBandit- Don't judge me but I'm going to be wearing this little sucker under everything I own, day and night for 6-8 weeks after baby girl is born. I will give a testimonial at the end of that time period on whether it worked or not.
Living Room Rug- We desperately need one of these. Recently we moved the coffee table back into the living room but we'll probably move it out again shortly. I want to put a rug between the couches that fits properly and is comfortable for a baby to crawl around on.
Rain Jacket- I don't have one currently, especially because my winter coat that's waterproof doesn't currently zipper because of my growing tummy. I don't want freezing rain hitting my scalp, ok?
Bracelet- It's just so cute! And i could probably make it.
As you might be able to tell, this is more of a NEED list than a wishlist. But I just don't spend as much time lately browsing the internet for things I cannot afford. I barely even look at normal people clothing (how sad!)

6 :: Maternity Pictures

I'm still working with these. I know I need to share some more, so here is one for your viewing pleasure. I will post more on here, I promise. I'll be honest too, I stole almost all of the poses that we did from pinterest. I won't apologize for free inspiration!

7 :: Tums

They're currently my BFF, need i say more??

8 :: Twitter

I'm trying to get more into twitter but I constantly forget about it. I'm also not the best at documenting daily life things with my iphone so I don't have too many pictures to include in my tweets. If you want to follow me, it's @miss_michelle6 .. I say a lot of random stuff. It is twitter though.. and the best tweets are random ones.

9 :: Farm Fresh Coop & Beef

We're currently doing the full share. It's a lot of food. I'm wondering if maybe for the next season we should do a half share and see how we do with that. Visits to the grocery store are less frequent but we really need to stock up on protein, which brings us to Beef. We are buying a quarter of a cow from Alex's old coworker and he's picking it up on Sunday. The last time we bought beef was probably 2 years ago or more and that came from the Steer that Alex's father had purchased and grazed for a year or so. Delish. This beef we're about to get should last us at least a year. It's soo nice never having to purchase beef at the grocery store. Plus it's local.

10 :: Job Stuff

I recently found out that when I take my short term disability that I won't get 100% of my pay, like I would've had I had my little girl in 2011. They're changing things for 2012 and I have no idea how much I will get. This is disappointing. I'm sure it's because the company is trying to save money and I guess technically they don't have to pay me at all but the thought that it was 100% and now it's going to be (probably) significantly less is just (again) disappointing. Not to mention, they go by what your doctor says in terms of how long you need. If the doc only says you need 6 weeks, they only pay for your short term disability for 6. I might beg my doctor to recommend 8 weeks at least. I'm also stressing a little bit about when I do come back to work and what my schedule will be like. I haven't talked about this at all on here but I want to see if I can do a temporary part time gig until I can get used to the fact that I have a baby. I am crossing my fingers that they will be flexible. From what I've seen/heard so far, they will try to be. But company's can change their mind in a jiffy and end up screwing even their loyalest employees over. I hope this isn't the case.

This is my first link up and honestly, it was fun but I'm totally lacking pictures and totally over-doing it with words. I'm such a rambler!

Hope everyone enjoys their weekend! I know I will because I'm leaving work at 2pm today, score!!

Linking up with E Tells Tales

Monday, December 5, 2011

7 weeks remain!

Welcome to week 33!

This week, I do have a pregnancy complaint. It's called 'throat burn' .. which is basically heartburn but in my throat area. It's awesome. That's sarcasm.

Anyway, I'm moving slowly today after this past weekend of busy-ness. Well, let's say the full week of busy-ness. (I have a post coming about the week of cleaning, so exciting! again, sarcasm!) I'm hoping to feel back to preggo-normal soon however i'm wondering if this is pressure that is here to stay? TMI i totally feel like i constantly have to pee, even though i know that i don't. She's still tapping away at my bladder, or punching.. really.

No doctor's appointment this week but I'm pretty sure she's still head down. She's supposed to be about 4 lbs now and over 17 inches long. She'll be putting on weight for the next 7 weeks at about a half pound or so a week. Grow baby grow!

Our friends Mike and Jen were nice enough to take some photos of us yesterday. Mike is pretty genius behind the lens and Jen is so so good at direction. Ugh! They turned out sooo great! Here's one for your current viewing pleasure. I will post more soon!

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Farm Fresh Coop :: Veggie Update & Recipe

Just a couple of photos of some of the veggie packs we've been getting recently and a couple recipes for the produce we received. Enjoy!

Week 3 Produce!

Check out the ginormo carrot!

We made lettuce wraps!

Delicious pork, okay turnips and yucky mustard greens!
And here's a recipe from the previous week, sorry, no picture!

Squash & Sweet Potato Soup
1 butternut squash or acorn squash
1 large sweet potato (we used a super large one)
1 head garlic
3 or 4 shallots
3 tbsp butter or olive oil
3 cups chicken broth (this depends on the size of your squash and potato)
1/2 cup heavy cream
2 bay leaves
1 tbsp dried oregano
Salt and Pepper to taste

Turn on the oven to 375 degrees before you start prepping your veggies for roasting.

Cut your squash in half lengthwise and scoop out the strings and seeds. Cut your sweet potato in half or more depending on the size. Peel your shallots and add to your baking dish (we used our pampered chef large bar pan for this) and cut the top off of a head of garlic exposing all the cloves. Drizzle the cloves with olive oil, wrap it in a piece of aluminum foil and add it to your baking sheet/dish. Drizzle olive oil and sprinkle salt on your squash and sweet potatoes and put it in the oven to roast for 20 minutes or until the squash and potato are cooked through.

Once cooked, remove from the oven. Get our your stock pot or in our case, our dutch oven and warm it up with the butter or olive oil. The original recipe I based this off of said to wait until your squash and potato cooled before scooping but I skipped that and just scooped them while they were hot. As I scooped I added them to the dutch oven that was set at about a 6 or 7 out of 9 (so medium high-ish). Once I had everything scooped, I threw the shallots into the pot and removed the roasted garlic cloves from the head (they should just squeeze right out) and threw them in too. I threw in the oregano and the bay leaves as well as some salt and pepper, then added the broth and let it simmer for about 15 minutes or so with the lid on.

When everything was cooked down enough to be blended, remove the bay leaves and transfer the soup in batches to the food processor for smoothing. You can also use a blender for this but our blender isn't the best. You can also use a stick blender for this but I feel like it takes longer even though the cleanup is much shorter.

Once the soup is all blended and smooth, add it back to the pot. Stir in the heavy cream until mixed thoroughly. Serve with chives or green onions as a garnish!

Adapted from: Full Fork Ahead

Baked Kale Chips
1 bunch of Kale
Olive Oil

Preheat the oven to 300 degrees.

Rinse and then de-rib the kale and cut into chip sized pieces. Toss lightly with olive oil and arrange on a baking sheet (covered in parchment for less cleanup) and then sprinkle with salt.

Bake for 20 minutes.

You'll never look at Kale the same again!

Recipe Originator: Smitten Kitchen

Friday, December 2, 2011

Our weekend with Makayla

We were lucky enough to have my 6 year old niece Makayla join us for the better part of Saturday and Sunday. She is the cutest and the smartest 6 year old i've ever met. Here's what we did to entertain her while she was with us!

When my sister and mom brought her down, we all headed to Isaac's for some lunch and then to the mall for a little bit. Makayla and I sat on Santa's lap (because she wouldn't do it alone) and despite almost crushing his leg, he basically granted my christmas wish to have a baby girl. (Like it was a choice?) Since we weren't allowed to just take a cellphone picture from inside the santa area, Alex took one from afar.

After the mall, we headed home and got down to gingerbread village business. I bought the kit at the grocery store and it was 4 or 5 tiny gingerbread houses. I had to whip up some more icing (that we kind of didn't really use) and our houses weren't exactly the most attractive or.. well, stable. Makayla did a great job though and she barely got messy! Alex and I on the other hand were quite messy and I'm pretty sure there are still candy sprinkles on the floor.

When we completed our village, we sat down to a nice dinner of Velveeta shells and cheese and broccoli. We needed to hurry a little bit so we could make the movie we planned to see, which was The Muppets. Honestly, and I can say this because Makayla doesn't read my blog, the Muppets was cheesy. I know it's a family movie and stuff but cut down on the cheese and maybe I would've liked it more. It was fine though. I can't say I laughed at all but I know there were some people beside me cracking up, so something must've been funny. We were asked for popcorn quite a few times but reminded the little miss that if she got popcorn at the theater, she wouldn't get ice cream when we got home. She choose the ice cream, as any smart person would do.

At home afterward, we ate ice cream and played some Mario coin runner and then put Makayla to bed in the middle of our King Size (thank god we have a king size). Alex and I hung out a little bit before joining her. The good thing about Makayla is she's always been a really good sleeper. Even when she was younger, all you would have to say is "close your eyes, keep them closed and when you wake up it will be morning" and it worked. At least anytime I've put her to bed. She is a mover and a shaker though. I think I got hit in the face once.. Alex probably got hit a couple of times. She turned diagonal in the bed with her feet in my back. I specifically turned my back so she couldn't kick my stomach, lol. It was an interesting night to say the least!

So now I have a song from the Muppet movie in my head called "Am I a Man, or Am I a Muppet?" sheesh!

Anyway.. Makayla woke up Sunday morning at 7am! I gave her my iPad to keep her busy but this didn't last all that long before she was asking for pancakes, since she knew we planned to make them for breakfast. We tried and failed at making pancakes with cookie cutters, unfortunately. But the pancakes tasted good and I would totally make that an every Sunday deal if Alex would let me. After pancakes we did some coloring. We played more coin runner and I made our pizza dough for lunch later on. We decided to go to a nearby park to play for a little bit and when we got home, Makayla and I made our pizzas (ugh, i missed taking a picture of this!) and watched Alice in Wonderland. After the movie, I took her back up to home base and we ended up going to Hoss's for dinner with my mom and Julia. YUM!

I totally get (more than before) how 24/7 being a parent is. Granted, with your own kids you don't constantly have to entertain them, but adding in fun activities spices things up and keeps things interesting! We're really lucky that Makayla is so well behaved and mature for her age so she can keep up with us really easily and we can keep up with her. We had a great time, and hopefully when our baby girl is a little bit older, she can come visit us again!

Thursday, December 1, 2011

A long holiday weekend =

a long recap blog post. so if you don't want to read alll about it.. just quit while you're ahead ;)

Wednesday, I got out of work at 3pm which is like heaven on a stick. I made a caramel apple cheeesecake pie from this recipe, which has been working out for me for about 3 years now give or take and my Auntie Christine loves it, am I right Aunt Chris? Anywho, Alex and I did our normal weeknight routine with the addition of hanging out with Nick, Laurel and Nate for a couple hours. Cue the debates about warfare.

Thursday was Thanksgiving, obviously! We headed up to my parents around 9am to spend some quality time before going over to Da's house. (Da is what we call my paternal grandmother). When we got there we got down to business of setting up the table by filling drinks etc. because we had to eat before the Packers game started. The food was delish per usual and after everyone was filled to the brim, we watched a little football. Well, okay, I watched a little and then retired to the kitchen to peruse the black friday newspaper inserts. I can't believe how cheap HDTVs are right now. Who's with me? It's crazy! If only I were in the market for a new TV! (i'm not, hello, baby on the way)

Anyway, at about 2pm we had to take off from Da's to head to our next destination, Lynn and Debbie Brubaker's in Kimberton (1.5 hours away from Camp Hill). We arrived in good time with time to socialize before the meal started. It was really nice to see everyone and catch up a little bit. I even got to show pictures of baby girl since we brought them along. We don't get to spend holidays with the extended Brubaker family very often so it was nice to see them. Plus, Lynn and Debbie do NOT disappoint when it comes to hosting and the food that they and everyone else contributed was delicious! That turkey was probably the moistest thing I have ever eaten (sorry Alex, you make a good turkey too). I wish I had more room in my belly for more food but I was stuffed! We spent the evening chatting and also playing Rumikub with Nate and Laura.. love that game!

Friday, Alex had to work so I got to sleep in! Thank goodness! Though that really only lasted until about 9am. When I eventually got out of bed, I decided to hit up Carter's outlet for the insane sale they were having of 50% off plus I had a 20% off coupon plus got another 10% off for getting there before noon! The outlets weren't as bad as I had anticipated. On my way there, I took a bit of a shortcut down Old Philly Pike and a cop ended up behind me in a 35 zone (annoying) .. then we're waiting at a red light and the person across the way breezes right through it. What did the cop do? Turn around and pull them over? Nope, he stayed behind me and basically ignored it! Cray-zay! I was a bit peeved but whatever. Back to Carter's. That place (as I've said before) is overwhelming. And I totally know I shouldn't be buying my baby clothing before even having a baby shower but I could NOT pass up that kind of sale. So I bought a couple of things for when she's older that she can wear. As well as some really cute summer outfits that were on clearance!
After Carter's, I headed to Neato Burrito to pick myself up something and then to Saigon to get Alex and Keith some lunch. We all had a nice time chatting about baby stuff and eating our yummy food. Neato Burrito is good but it is filling (cue Anchorman quote and the subsequent punting of poor Baxter). After lunch, I headed home just in time to see the surprise from Omer and Charmayne delivered by Charmayne, Nick and Laurel. They were starving so they didn't stay but the surprise awaited setup in the basement. I'm pumped about it, it's going to be so fun! So I put up some Christmas decor and then drew the tree on the nursery wall so it's ready for painting. It's looking really good and if all goes according to plan I will have saved a TON of money just painting it myself instead of buying the set of decals. (Enter shameless self promotion). Then it was time to head to Iron Hill to meet up with the Bru-clan since Alex and Omer usually do that on Friday's that he works anyway. We couldn't stay long however because we had to head up to my Grandparents house for the Christmas Tree decorating celebration which included a house filled with cousins running wild and aunts and uncles to catch up with. We had a good time and took lots of pictures. I had a really nice chat with my cousin Sarah who is due with her 3rd baby in May. She cloth diapers so I got all the dirty details (ha!) about what she uses and how she cleans them and all of that stuff. I've been meaning to ask her all about it so I'm glad I had that opportunity. I'll do another post on cloth diapers because I did take the time to make a spreadsheet (are you surprised?) and the savings are in-sane!

Saturday morning we had breakfast planned with Alex's parents (Omer and Charmayne) and Nick and Laurel. Alex made potatoes (yum) and a napa cabbage dish and I cut up apples and kind of unsuccessfully roasted grapefruit (it just tasted like regular grapefruit by the time we got there, bc it wasn't warm anymore). Anyway, they already had a whole spread waiting so we chowed down and it was yummy. I used to not enjoy breakfast so much but it's growing on me. After breakfast we engaged in a cut-throat game of Yatzhee which I stunk horribly at. The 2nd game we started I was doing killer but it ended up we had to leave before we could finish.

I plan to do a separate post of the activities we did while babysitting my 6 year old niece Makayla, so I'm going to insert here a few teasers: Santa. Gingerbread village. Movies.

Sunday I took Makayla back to my mom's house around 3pm. I stayed and chatted for a little while, just as Makayla expected I would. Then they said they were going to Hoss's so I joined them. I never EVER say no to Hoss's. Ever. Never ever ever. Anyway, to Hoss's we went and it was nice to just eat salad for dinner and not get overfilled for once that weekend. Then I made the trip back home and got to spend some relax time with Alex before drifting off into the best sleep I've had all weekend.

And we all lived happily ever after. The end.