A matter of pride

In general, I’m a worrier. I worry about everything you can possibly worry about plus some. So naturally you can safely assume I’ve worried a lot during this pregnancy. I worry about my health, her health, finding a good pediatrician, finding the best daycare, being a good mom, breast feeding, etc, etc. If its baby related, I worry about it.

Lately, something has been eating at me, and to be completely honest it’s making me sad. I couldn’t quite place my finger on it, but it’s been causing me to burst into tears at the drop of a hat (this could just be hormones, I don’t know). I mean sobbing uncontrollably over a song on the radio crying. So embarrassing.  John has been trying to get me to talk about what’s been bothering me, and I always list the same things.

Yesterday I told him I’m worried I’ll be a bad mom by sending her to daycare, which technically is true because that does worry me, even though plenty of babies have working parents and are in daycare and turn out perfectly okay (I know it’s the quality of time you spend with your children not the sheer quantity of hours), but the whole truth is there is something more.
I was at work today when I figured it out. I don’t like to talk about my job here because, honestly, I want to keep it. I like my job, I’m good at my job, but it is by no means what I thought I’d be doing with my life. Especially after getting a master’s degree. It’s not that it’s a bad job, it’s just not where I saw myself.

I have always been a big subscriber to the philosophy you should follow your dreams, no matter what the cost. If you are doing what truly makes you happy, that’s worth something more than money (however if the two are not mutually exclusive that’s even better). That’s part of the reason why Amelia is on her way: I’ve always wanted to be a mom. What worries me is I won’t be around to be the best one I can be, and for what? A job that I don’t absolutely love?

I want Amelia to be proud of me, the same way I’m proud of my parents for doing what they love and working as hard as they did/do. I want her to be proud of me like I’m sure she’ll be proud of John (how can you not be proud of a dad who is an amazing pilot?). I think that’s why this blog has become so important to me, so imperative to keep up with. After being a mom, writing is my only other dream. And even if this blog never generates a dime for my family, at least it’s something I can say “I did this for you. I did this for me. I was following my dream.”

And hopefully it’s something she’ll be proud of.

The most perfect wall ever

John and I buckled down and finished Amelia’s nursery wall yesterday. I’m so pleased with how it turned out. But, like making the hoops, it was definitely a multi-step process.

We hung the letters first. Instead of using nails to hang the letters (which was our original idea, and then we thought, wait, how are we going to hang the I and the L?), we used Command No Damage Frame Hangers. Since it was impossible to really measure this, we basically had to eyeball it. It was kind of a pain because John is a perfectionist, and when it comes to this kind of project I’m more of a “get it done” girl. Somehow, though, we made it work.

Admiring his letter hanging skills

(Don’t you love my model? He’s such a good, albeit reluctant, handyman.)

Hanging the hoops was much easier. First, I took a hoop of each size and placed it over it’s corresponding paper circle on the wall. You could hang the hoops one of two ways: Either from the metal clasp or the wooden part of the hoop. I figured it would be a little more difficult for her to get them off the wall if we hung them from the metal part, so I pushed a pencil through where the nail would go and put a dot on the wall so John would know where to hang. Then he hammered.

Handyman at work

After all the nails were in place, we hung our hoops. And voila, the end result:

FINISHED

I’m SO HAPPY with how this project turned out. It’s exactly what I wanted in a nursery: Soft, girly, fun, not babyish, but still “young”. Something that will grow with her for a few years until she can help decorate her own room. I’m so proud of my first successful venture into crafting and DIY; I’m actually looking forward to doing more for her room.

But for now, with this done, we’re onto bigger and better things. Like, you know, furniture, which I’ve heard is pretty central to a nursery.

A small scare

I had a doctor appointment yesterday. I went in, like I always do, feeling the same way I’ve been feeling lately: Tired, cranky, sore, but generally okay. I peed in a cup, got weighed (now up 12 pounds from my pre-pregnancy weight, 15.5 pounds gained total after my initial first trimester weight loss), and then had my blood pressure taken. And it was elevated. I wasn’t really listening when the nurse said what it was (155 over something), I just knew it has always typically been below 120 over something, and it just didn’t seem right.

You can always tell when something is off when you don’t have to wait for the doctor. My doctor came in immediately after the nurse left. She didn’t say anything about my blood pressure right off, just measured my stomach and listened for the heartbeat. Then she said since it was high, she was going to take it again. And again. The last time it was down a little, but still much higher than my baseline.

Of course, this is where I started to panic a little, which I’m sure didn’t help anything at all. All I could think about was pre-eclampsia and having to go on bed rest and possibly deliver early. My doctor is really great and knows I have a tendency to over-react. She looked me straight in the eye and said, “Everything is going to be fine. I’m thinking this is stress related, but we’re going to do some extra screenings, okay?”

(Can I just take a moment to say how much I love my doctor? She’s really fantastic.)

I was already scheduled for my glucose screening, so she added a HELPP Panel to it. After drinking that awful sugar drink (think really sweet, really dense, really flat orange soda) and waiting an hour, I had about eight vials of blood drawn. I hate having blood drawn. To make matters worse, after she had one vial filled, the needle slipped (causing me to literally squirt blood all over the place–so glad I wasn’t looking), so she had to re-stick me. The mixture of all these things made me feel really icky the rest of the day–very woozy and head-achy.

All in all, not the best day I’ve ever had. The silver lining is I’m going to be seeing her every two weeks now (can’t believe we’re already that close to the third trimester), and we get to have another ultrasound at our next visit (which is in two weeks)! We’re supposed to know what is/isn’t going on in a couple of days. I’m hopeful everything is fine.

A good job done

Look what I finished this evening!

Joann’s was STILL out of the larger hoops (which were actually 12″ not 14″, oops), so I made a split second decision and got 10″ hoops instead. I just couldn’t fathom waiting any longer to finish this project, and the thought of traipsing down there again tomorrow or Friday made me want to cry. I had to tweak the pattern a little, but I am SO HAPPY with how it turned out. It’s exactly what I wanted it to be. And if Amelia’s kicks mean anything, she is already enjoying it vicariously through me.

You know, this whole wall cost less than $50 to complete. I don’t think I could have decorated on such a large scale for any less than that. I’m just going to take a moment to pat myself on the back now.

The way to a pregnant lady’s heart is through her stomach

I never really understood the whole craving thing that comes with pregnancy. I heard about it and even laughed about some of the crazier ones. Now, the whole crazy pregnant lady craving thing IS my reality. Last night, John went out to eat with a friend. When he called me to let me know, I asked him, “Can you bring me home some french fries?” Today, my manager had a taco salad for lunch, and all I could think about for the rest of the day was Mexican food. More specifically, I wanted a burrito from Izzo’s. I was literally salivating in the parking lot of the restaurant after work.

And then there’s the really random ones. Like the other day, when I was hit with a craving for Andes mint thins. Who would even think of those outside of Christmas? Add in my never ending quest for Blue Bell Rainbow Popsicles, and I’m amazed I can function most days without driving everyone around me insane.

It’s crazy how much I think about food these days. After a very long first trimester of not wanting any food, it’s been really enjoyable  to not only want to eat, but to savor what I’m eating. Plus since I haven’t gained much weight, I feel a little more freedom when it comes to food, though I try not to indulge too much. I find it especially funny how Amelia reacts to food. After some meals she’s super active, and others more relaxed. It’s fun to try to guess if active means she likes something, or vice versa.

In other pregnancy news, I haven’t been feeling all that great physically the past few days. I’m very quickly venturing into the uncomfortable part of pregnancy, which for me means hip pain and back pain, and it seems like I’m getting even less sleep than I was. And since I’ve spent the past couple nights working on nursery things, I’m taking a break tonight to just veg out and kick my feet up. John is out of town for the evening, so I have complete control over Netflix. I have a lot of things on the books for the next few days, but I’m hoping to finish up the fabric hoops and wrap up another project (I’m literally scared of the person Pinterest is turning me into). But for tonight I foresee a few episodes of Private Practice, a couple chapters in my book, and a hot shower in my future.

Nursery, round 2

After a nice weekend with my family, I got home today feeling absolutely inspired to tackle the nursery. Or at least the fabric hoops for the wall behind the crib, in spite of the fact I still didn’t have any fabric to go into the hoops or the hoops themselves. So I boldly went to Joann’s Fabrics without a plan or much of an idea what I wanted to do.

My original intention was to pick out all the fabrics separately, but I quickly realized I would probably be there for about four days before I got half way done. Luckily, Joann’s sells pre-made bundles of fabric quarters already color coordinated, so I narrowed my focus to those. I found one I immediately fell in love with in shades of brown, salmon, and turquoise.

At home, I ironed all the squares (just enough to get the creases out; pulling them in the tight hoops gets the rest), and then sat down to the task of figuring out which hoops to put with each fabric.

My paper circle version came in as a handy reference so I was able to make sure the same colors wouldn’t be right next to each other. Once I was happy with the pattern, I started assembling.

Here is a quick tutorial if you ever want to do this yourself:

-Find your favorite Pandora station. Crank it up. (I greatly enjoyed my Elton John station during this project, but whatever floats your boat)

-Place the inner circle of the hoop under the fabric. Make sure it’s a segment with the pattern you want. Generally speaking, it’s easiest to work from corners.

-Place the outer circle around the inner and tighten. As much as it will tighten, tighten it. Gently pull sides so fabric isn’t bunchy or wrinkly.

-Cut excess fabric. You only need a centimeter or so to glue down. Any more or less is a pain.

-Glue edges of fabric to back side of hoop. I used an all purpose craft glue, but anything except hot glue or super glue will work since you will be using your fingers to secure the fabric to the hoop, and trust me, it will get all over you. Let the glue dry some before you start messing around with them or you will be gluing some more.

And ta-da, you have your very own fabric filled hoop. As far as crafts go, it’s pretty easy, but a little tedious. Don’t make the same mistake as I did and sit on the nursery floor to do it, as it’s very uncomfortable.

Sadly, Joann’s was out of the 14″ embroidery hoops, so there were a few I wasn’t able to complete. I have two beige-ish fabrics and a fabric with all the colors (very similar to the already made big one) that will fill those as soon as I can get them, so pardon the bare the spots in the arrangement.

So far, I’m really pleased with how it’s turning out. It’s girly without being babyish, and the colors are fun while some of the patterns are still a little sophisticated. All in all, I think it’s a really pretty design that will grow with her.

I can’t wait to finish the hoops and get it all up on the wall. I also found a crib I’m in love with this weekend, so hopefully we’ll have that ordered and on the way by the end of the week. That just leaves finding a dresser, curtains, and a couple small decor projects and the nursery is DONE. Cannot wait.

25 week update

We’re officially 2/3 of the way through this pregnancy. I’m now in the mid-twenties in both age and being pregnant. With the third trimester right around the corner, I’m trying to enjoy the last few weeks of what comfort I have left. What little there is, anyway.

Is it just me or is pregnancy never ending? I know nine months (technically I think it’s more like 10 months, but who the hell is counting, anyway) is a long time, but it seems like everyone else’s pregnancy went by SO FAST in comparison to mine. I have several friends who are pregnant, and it’s like, “How are you already 35 weeks?!” I had a co-worker tell me the other day, “When are you going to pop? I feel like you’ve been pregnant forever!” TELL ME ABOUT IT, DUDE. And then I had to tell him I still have three months left.

According to all my pregnancy apps, my little kicker now has a sense of equilibrium. When I had my mid-pregnancy ultrasound she was breech, and judging by her kicks, she still is. I don’t know if her new found sense of up and down will help this at all, but I hope that in the next few weeks she makes her way into the head down, ready to be born position. Even if it means she will be kicking my ribs.

I took today off of work to get some much needed R&R as well as some necessary errands ran, and we’re heading down to my parent’s house as soon as John gets off work. Both my brothers and their kids will be there, so we’re all excited about having the whole family together for the first time since John and I got married last year. We’ll be celebrating Father’s Day with a crawfish boil, and I’m hoping to get a couple snowball breaks in while we’re down there too.

So if I don’t get the chance before Sunday, Happy Father’s Day to all the daddies and daddies-t0-be!