Saturday, March 21, 2009

Stupid Pregnancy Tricks

I just read this post by Kira where she mentions a "dixy cup sample" and it reminded me of a post I always meant to get around to writing while I was pregnant. My stupid pregnancy tricks; or what some would call "placenta brain." You've probably all heard of it or witnessed it - the dumb things women do during pregnancy because their brains are all Warning! Warning! Function Overload. Disconnect immediately. Can not process more than Baby Growing. System Refresh to Occur in 9 Months.

A few of my stupid pregnancy tricks included:

1) Asking a friend to watch a pot of boiling water for me while I went to get ready for Konopalooza. When I came back 15 or so minutes later and asked if it was going okay she sheepishly looked at me and said..ummm...yeah, I just turned the burner on for you.

2) Got out of the shower without washing the conditioner out of my hair.

3) Not a week later I got out without ever putting conditioner IN my hair. For some this might not be a big deal. For me? Well, if I would like my hair to look and feel like a birds nest, well then it is fine. I performed this certain trick while approximately 27 weeks pregnant and instead of getting back in the shower to finish the task I had the most brilliant idea to just lean over the tub. Have you ever seen a 27 week pregnant woman leaning over a tub?? Picture a football player lining up before the snap. Now add a ginormous belly! Yeah. That about does it.

4) Revised a report at work and then stood by the printer waiting for the 7 pages to print. Sat there for a long time, checked printer over and over, cursed printer, returned to desk. Oh, yeah, it would help if I actually hit PRINT.

But I performed my most favorite stupid pregnancy trick at the doctor's office early on in my pregnancy.....

It was one of my first appointments and I was just getting the hang of everything. Check in, wait for nurse to call your name, finally get called back, take shoes off, get on the scale, cringe at the number staring back at know the drill. After getting weighed in the nurse asked me if I could give a urine sample. "Sure," I told her. We walk around the corner to the bathroom she comes in with me and explains what to do: Cups here, wipes here, just wipe, put it in the cup and then put the cup in that little door right there. No problem I tell her and she leaves me in peace.

After the door shuts I stand there for a second and think...hmmm...I have NEVER given a urine sample like this before. This is soooo weird. Oh well, what do I know, I'll do what she says. So I proceed to pee in the toilet. Wipe. Put the wipe in the cup and put the cup behind the little door. All I can think is, maybe they get the urine sample off of the wipe? Odd, but, whatev.

I finish my business and join my nurse and Collin in the hallway. She doesn't say anything to me as she leads us to our room but I can't help to wonder so I ask...."Did I do that right?"

"Well," she says, "you were supposed to pee in the cup."

"Oh. Opps. I'm sorry."

Collin turns to look at me with the biggest eyes I have ever seen. "You didn't pee in the cup???"

No. I did as I was told. I wiped and I put it in the cup. And then I put the little cup behind the door.

Looking back I realize by "it" she meant the pee. Not the wipe. Doh!

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Keaton's Baptism

On February 22nd, following the 10:30 am mass, Keaton received the Sacrament of Baptism. We started planning this day back in October when we attended the required baptism class at church. To say that this was a special day for me is such an understatement. Words do not do justice to how much I looked forward to this occasion, to how important it was for me, for my son, for our family.

My faith journey has had its highs and lows. Although one of my most cherished memories is of the mission trip to West Virginia that I took with a group of friends following my senior year of high school, during my college years my faith took a backseat to my studies. It wasn’t that I didn’t attend church, I did, sporadically, but it was more that I wasn’t quite “feeling” it.

In 2004, after meeting and getting engaged to Collin, I made the decision to convert to Catholicism. It was a terrifying decision and before committing completely I more than once almost backed out. I’m so thankful now that I didn’t. My RCIA class began in September 2004 and I was confirmed at the Easter vigil in March 2005. I learned a lot about the Catholic faith during those six months, but even more importantly my heart was opened, and filled, by the love of Christ.

Since that spring day in 2005 I have moved away from friends in Milwaukee, moved further from my family in Illinois, relocated my job to Wausau, relocated my job a second time to Stevens Point, felt utterly alone in a new place, and struggled to get pregnant. I’ve also received a promotion at work, welcomed my brother and Kira’s move back up here, made some amazing friends with the girls at work, and was blessed with a beautiful son. Through the trials of the last four years I turned to Christ for the strength. During the joys of the last four years I’ve praised Him for his glory. I hold steadfast to the thought that with him I can make it through anything.

So to witness my son, the beloved son that I know was sent to us from Him, be brought into life with Christ, well, I just don’t have the words to express my joy. My excitement. My gratitude.

The service was beautiful and the hymns touched my heart. I held Keaton close during the entire mass. He was such a good boy and slept peacefully in my arms. After mass, as Collin and I stood up there along with Kira & Justin, Keaton’s Godparents, watching Father perform the baptism, my heart was exploding. My perfect little son, who didn't make so much as a peep, has been given an incredible gift.

This occasion was made all the more special because we had so many friends and family, almost 40 people, come over to celebrate the day. It was a great reminder of how incredibly blessed we are. Additionally, Keaton got to wear my family’s baptismal gown. I have looked forward to the day my children were able to wear this gown for as long as I can remember. This gown was first worn by my Great Grandpa in 1889. Keaton is the 12th person in my family to be baptized in this gown. The list includes the following:

Great Great Grandpa Harold Hutton-1889
Great Grandma Phyllis (Hutton) Bender-1919
Great Aunt Cynthia -1949
Great Aunt Candy -1955
Great Uncle Bryan -1958
Cousin Andrea -1973
Cousin MaLinda -1974
Mother Kate -1980
Cousin Emma -2002
Cousin Caden -2004
Cousin Mason -2008
Keaton – 2009

The day was wonderful and one that will forever be etched in my mind. This was in no small part due to the help of some very special friends and family. Amanda, Ember & Drew, Mom & Dad – thank you! Thank you so much for all of your help in getting the food and house ready for this celebration; we couldn’t have done it without you. We are so grateful.
Getting ready for church in the sweater Ember & Gail gave me.

Keaton receiving the Sacrament

My Godparents - Uncle Justin and Auntie Kira

Godfather/Uncle Justin receives the light of Christ

The gown

Bender Family

Konopacki Family

With Father

Keaton's cake

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Happy St. Patrick's Day!

Wow, what a week it has been. Wait. Scratch that. What a MONTH it has been. I feel like we have been going non-stop since Keaton’s baptism; which, by the way, I’m still planning to write a post about. One of these days. The weekend after the baptism was Kira’s baby shower down in Earlville and my aunt’s 60th birthday party in Rockford. Then the first weekend in March Collin & I threw Kira & Justin a baby shower up here on Saturday and on Sunday we packed up the car and headed back down to Earlville for the week.

Collin spent the week siding my parent’s house and I spent the week watching TLC. I’m not kidding - I probably spent 8 hours a day watching TLC. It is a good thing we don’t have cable because you wouldn’t be able to pry me away from the TV. Jon & Kate Plus 8, A Baby Story, Bringing Home Baby: The Fist 36 Hours, 10 Years Younger, What Not to Wear…..I mean what else does a girl need? I watched so many episodes of Jon & Kate Plus 8 that I woke up in a total panic one morning because I had a dream that I had 8 children but had only fed 1 of them that day.

Keaton came down with a cold the week before we left and between still fighting that off and being in a new place he was sort of thrown for a loop. He had a hard time napping and only slept if he was being held and at night I slept with him on my chest in the reclining chair. I decided right away to hell with working on sleep training this week – I have to go back to work on the 26th so if he wants to be held all day, I’ll hold him all day. I don’t have many of these days left. I thought we might have a hard transition to sleeping on his own once we got home but surprisingly he is doing pretty well.

It was great to spend time with my parent’s; it is always so relaxing when we are with them because they cook us good meals and take care of dog duty. I feel sort of guilty about that but Gamma (my Mom) is Maia’s most favorite person in the whole wide world and she prefers being taken care of by her. And I can see why considering yesterday at 4 pm I asked Collin if he fed her in the morning and his response was – No, you did, didn’t you? Ummm, No. Shit. We are horrible parents.

Unfortunately, although the week was great we had car trouble that but a black cloud over the last couple of days. On Saturday before we left town I brought my car into the shop to have a seal replaced. Two hours after I got there they came out and told me they had ordered the wrong part – after they had torn my car apart! The part wouldn’t be in until Monday and sorry, but you can’t drive your car until it is fixed. I was pissed. I told them we were leaving the next day for a week and I needed a car to drive. They equipped me with a Ford Taurus. What? In replace of my Envoy you give me a little dinky car? It was not going to work. So Collin called up and I’m not sure what he said but 15 min. later we had a minivan waiting for us.

The trip down to Earlville went fine and we tooled around town for the week without incident. On Saturday my mom, Keaton, and I packed up to head to Milwaukee for the day for Emma & Mason’s birthday parties. On the way home a light came on the dash that I had never seen before – it was a yellow exclamation point that looked something like this (!). Apparently this means you have low tire pressure. A few minutes later we had not one but TWO blowouts. I pulled over but couldn’t get too far off the road because the incline was too steep. We sat there for about 45 min. before the tow truck arrived. It was nerve-wracking since the cars were not pulling over and the van would shake each time someone drove past. Thankfully my uncle was not far behind us and he was able to stop and pick Keaton and me up and take us back to Rockford while my Mom sat at Wal-Mart to wait for the car. I wish I could say the story ends there, but no. My Mom ended up stuck at Wal-Mart until 9 pm when (thankfully again!) my aunt was on her way back to Rockford and was able to pick her up. The tires couldn’t be fixed and they wouldn’t have them in stock until Monday. My Aunt Cindy and my Mom finally made it back to Rockford around 10 or so and after my aunt and uncle graciously offered their van to us we got home around midnight. On Sunday my Uncle Dick called around Rockford and found two tires for us and that afternoon we started the trek back towards Milwaukee to get the car fixed. When we got there the people at Wal-Mart informed us that the dealer had two different sized tires on the car, the tread on the tires was so bad they should have been replaced, and the valve stems were all busted. Oh, and the spare also had a nail in it.

I’ve calmed down now but oh man was I fired up. The dealership knew that we were driving to Illinois and they also knew we had an infant and they set us up with unsafe car. They even admitted to Collin when he returned the vehicle that it had never been inspected. My mom called to complain on Monday morning and they have reimbursed us for the cost of the new tires and tow but get this, instead of apologizing, which I think would be appropriate, when Collin dropped the car off they threatened to deduct $140 for dog hair. It is safe to say we will not be purchasing another car nor will we be having our car serviced at Scaffidi again.

Thankfully the weather has been beautiful the past couple of days and a little fresh air has greatly improved all of our moods. Here’s wishing you all a very Happy St. Patrick’s Day. I’m off to eat a little corned beef.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Dear Keaton: 2 Months

Dear Keaton,

This week you turned two months old. Yesterday was your doctor’s appointment and you weighed in at 10 lbs 6 oz. and were 22 inches long. Although you are only in the 25th percentile for height, weight, and head circumference, we are so proud of you for growing so strong. You’ve put on 4 lbs since birth, buddy! I boxed up most of your newborn clothes around 6 weeks, but at that time your 0-3 months clothes were still pretty big on you. But then about a week and a half ago that all changed; and it literally felt like it happened overnight. Additionally, after going through 360 newborn diapers (your Daddy kept track!) we also transitioned to using size 1 this month. We were pretty excited about this because now we can start using up the over 900 diapers that we got from various showers and diaper parties that are taking up a considerable amount of space in your closet. What will we do with all that extra room, Stink? Probably buy some new toys, huh?
This has been a big month for you. You’ve met lots of new people and started to do some new things. At the beginning of the month you surprised your Daddy and I by rolling over during tummy time. We thought it was a fluke at first, but when you did it again, and then again, you had us convinced. You’ve also gotten very good at holding your head up this month and you love to look around. You especially love looking towards lights and out the window when the sun is shining.

It seems you have also fallen in love with your legs this month. When we hold you in our lap you love to push off on us to a standing position and when you are lying flat on your back you kick, kick, kick, to your heart’s content. A couple of weeks ago your Daddy and I started a new morning routine where we bring you into bed with us for a little bit after your morning feeding. You lay in between us, your hands sprawled out above your head and your legs just spinning in the air like you’re riding a bicycle. These morning hours, when it is just the three of us lying there together, have been my fondest memories of this month. When I look down at you and see your little body wiggling around so excitedly I feel complete. You have made all my dreams come true.

Much to our delight you have also started smiling and cooing this month. This has all happened very recently and I can’t even tell you how excited your Daddy and I are about it. Many people have told us that you appear to be a very serious kid. Before the smiling started the only real look we got from you consisted of furrowed eyebrows that said “Really people? Are you kidding me?” We are so happy to finally start seeing your personality come out.
The biggest thing that happened for you this month is that on February 22nd you were baptized. It is hard for me to put into words how important this day was for me. I spent months praying for you. Those months included a lot of heartache and a lot of tears; and it was my faith in God and his promises of hope that helped me through those dark days. The sun was shining the morning of the 22nd, which seemed so fitting. To see you brought into a life with Christ filled me with joy and pride. God sent you to us, of that I am certain, and if we, as parents, do nothing else well I hope that we at least instill in you a strong faith in Christ.

It has been another amazing month, Little One. You are growing and changing so quickly that I can’t wait to see what the month of March brings. As I finish this letter you are laying on the ottoman kicking your little legs and just talking away to your Daddy. He keeps asking you “Are you happy?” and you have been giving him a very definitive “AHH!” AHH, baby, you make us so happy too!

I love you,

Monday, March 2, 2009

I'd tell him to shove that rose up his.....

Wow. Well. I'm a little shell shocked. What did you guys think of The Bachelor finale and the twist? I loved Jason in the last season of The Bachelorette and when DeAnna didn't pick him I was upset; I just thought he was a great guy. But I'll be honest with you; I lost respect for him tonight. It wasn't that I necessarily liked Melissa better than Molly; for the first time I really liked both of the girls and before the big engagement scene I told Collin I didn't even really care who he picked this time. But to pick Melissa, to put a ring on her finger, and then to break it all off 6 weeks later on live TV is a pretty asshole move if you ask me. As Dr. Phil would say: Sometimes you make the right decision and sometimes you have to make the decision right. I don't take engagements lightly. In my opinion if he wasn't absolutely positive then he shouldn't have asked her to marry him. I also think I wouldn't feel so heated about this if Melissa didn't look totally elated after the proposal and if she was in agreement that things weren't working, but I got the feeling from her that this isn't what she wanted. She wanted to fight for the relationship while he was willing to just throw it away.

Bleh. Anyway, that finale didn't sit well with me. I'd love to hear what you guys are thinking.

In other news things have been really busy around her the past few weeks. Two weekends ago Keaton was baptized. It was an awesome weekend with lots of guests and good times and one of these days I'll get a post written about it. This past weekend Collin went on his annual wrestling trip so I was flying solo on the parenting gig for a few days. On Friday Kira and I headed south for her Earlville baby shower and my aunts 60th birthday party. It was another fun weekend but I ended up sick on Saturday night. It has turned into just a cold but it's still just no fun being sick; and I'm really hoping Keaton doesn't get it from me.

I'm hoping once my head clears up and I get some more sleep I'll be able to catch up on my blog writing and reading. Tonight it was clear that the lack of sleep is finally catching up with us when I asked Collin where he put the milk I had pumped this morning and he insisted it was on the top shelf of the refrigerator. I searched that damn fridge up and down and never found it. When he saw that I gave up and grabbed a new bottle to use for pumping he came in the kitchen, insisting it was RIGHT THERE and together we searched again for a good five minutes in a fridge that could give a college student a run for his money due to the lack of groceries before we remembered that he wasn't in the there because we feed it to him this morning!!