Children's Journals

This is my journal, with posts mainly about myself. If you want to see posts specifically about Maia or Liam, check out the links to their journals under the "My Interests" section on the right side of my blog page.

Belly Picture Comparison

View Belly Picture Camparison for Second Pregnancy!

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Gingerbread Houses, thou art the invention of the Devil

Seriously. I am pretty sure that whoever thought up gingerbread house kits was dabbling in the evil side of things a bit. Having never made one before, they always sounded fun. Lots of edible things that you use to build something colorful and fun. Totally awesome, right?


So, I had bought a kit to make with Liam, and I finally got around to having the time to sit with him and do it (yeah yeah, I know, it's after Christmas). It was a bit later than I wanted it to be, but I figured we wouldn't try to use up all the candy, so we should be able to do it quickly (ha haa haaaaa). I got the base set up, and pulled out the pieces of the kit, all the while Liam asking if he can eat the house yet. I open the candy bags and dump them into little bowls, warning him to not eat them just yet. I put the pieces of gingerbread to the side. I look for the tube of icing...and instead find only a bag of powdery sugar. A bag that tells me I have to mix up the icing. What?! I have to mix it up? I don't DO kitchen stuff. I have rarely used a mixer in my life. But here it is, telling me to use one, and that I have to get the icing the right consistency. A sure way to set me up for failure. I balk and complain about it for about 5 minutes, all the while Liam asking me repeatedly if he can eat the candy yet.

I finally suck it up and drag out the mixer and a bowl and proceed to mix up the icing. Well, I proceed to blanket the kitchen in a cloud of confectioners sugar, and little blobby balls of sugar/water mixture. It takes way more water than they say it should. Eventually it turns from powdery pearls into sludge that resembles toothpaste. Finally ready to assemble. I let Liam have one little piece of candy in celebration.

I proceed to spoon some of the icing into the decorator bag they provided, and then turn to the directions to see how to put the tip on it. The directions tell me to put the tip into the bag first, then cut a hole, THEN put the icing into the I stand there for a minute, trying to breath deeply and calmly. And then proceed to stick the decorator tip down into the icing with my hands. I get halfway before it's just too much for me to bear. I abandon the tip and clean the sticky slather off my hands and find some pointy skewer-like object to jam the tip down the rest of the way. Then cut a hole in the tip of the decorator bag itself. It seems to work. But apparently you have to twist the top of the bag super, not even just super tight, but fold it over, then twist it again, then fold it a few more times, and then twisty-tie it shut, and then maybe tape it, before folding it one more time...because otherwise I don't see how you can prevent the sugary sticky mess of mortar from somehow making it's way out of the bag from the back end, all over your hands and shirt and tablecloth and chairs and floor and 3-year-old-son.

I manage to glue two walls onto the base, but they won't really stay upright, even when holding them together for the full 3 minutes they mention. So I use soup cans to kind of shore them up, and truck onwards with the rest of the walls. Liam is still asking about eating more candy, so I relent and let him have another piece. I then get ready to put the roof on, and wonder if it will hold. I check the directions. They tell me to wait at least an hour before trying to put the roof on. Gritting my teeth, I read on further in case there is anything else I should have read. I get to the part that says that after putting the roof on, I should wait 2-3 hours before attempting to decorate the house.

After my head finishes exploding and I call my mom to complain about the evil ways of gingerbread houses, I decide I don't really care what the darn instructions say. I glue the roof on (after struggling with getting the icing flowing again, preferably out the tip and not out the back end all over my hand). I use more cans to shore up the roof, sealing in two of the soup cans inside (will have to remember those later). I give it a few minutes to set, letting Liam eat a few more pieces of candy in celebration (and so there isn't as much to put on the darn house).

Finally, I let Liam get down to business. I pipe...hah, pipe...more like blop...okay...blop on icing here and there, and he presses candy into them. They slide pathetically downward. He starts to learn to hold them in place, first counting to three, and then upping the ante by going up to six, and then ten...and then just doing random numbers, ending with 20 most of the time. I think he made up a few numbers in there. Most of them stuck, but a few still refused to disobey gravity and pooled at the bottom of his walls. Still, at the end, he still had something that resembled a house. He wasn't hopped up on too much sugar (shhh, I can delude myself), and neither of us were stuck to the furniture (yet).

He had fun. I, on the other hand, will never touch a gingerbread house again.

Monday, December 27, 2010

24 Weeks

More people are starting to feel the baby move, as we had holiday get-togethers this past weekend. Even Liam finally felt the baby move and looked delighted. And I am noticing more than just the kicks, I am feeling the sliding movements, as well as something round jammed into my side at one point..probably a head.

Here is a baby picture as well as the official baby info:

Your Baby This Week
Your baby is getting heavier to carry, and you may feel the stress. At the same time, you may experience profound joy, knowing your little one is growing healthy and strong!
Your bundle of joy is looking more angelic every day, gaining weight (she's more than 16 ounces or .45 kg), growing longer (over 8 inches or 20 cm) and filling out! Your baby is also starting to produce white blood cells, which will help fight infection after she leaves your body and enters the world. You may be surprised to notice that your baby responds to the sound of your voice or even the touch of your hand on your tummy by quieting down or occasionally increasing activity as a way of communicating with you!

Your Body This Week
You weight gain is beginning to accelerate to about one pound (.45 kg) per week, so symptoms like lower back pain and swollen feet may increase. Periodically resting for 15 to 20 minutes can help. Beginning this week, your health care provider will start monitoring you for gestational diabetes (high blood sugar levels during pregnancy). If you are gaining a lot of weight, blood testing is imperative, as excessive weight gain is typically a symptom. Some women also report feeling some depression around this time. While feelings of sadness usually pass within a few weeks, talk to your caregiver if they don't.

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Merry Christmas....and Christmas Heartaches

A very Merry Christmas to everyone out there, to all my friends and family, my loved ones. Of course, this being the time of year to be with the ones you love, it's especially hard this particular Christmas. Last Christmas I had all four grandparents, and a great grandmother. This Christmas I just have one grandmother. I lost three relatives in the span of 2 weeks, and the four just over a month later. And now, it's the holiday season, and I miss them more than ever. It seems surreal that they aren't here. Like a bad dream, like it really can't be like's so unfair that they are not here with us. I want them back and it aches to know I can't have them back. All I can do is remember them, and bury myself in the love of those still around me.

Merry Christmas again, to those around me, and to those I have lost.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Slave to the Yarn

For the first time, I probably feel like Stephanie Pearl-McPhee does around Christmas. Too much knitting, not enough time to knit gifts. I usually don't even knit gifts for Christmas. Every now and then I have a neat idea and knit up something for someone. But this year, somehow I decided to do one gift for someone...and then another...and another....and since I made this decision back in October, it seemed completely doable to take on all the projects I planned to do. Most were pretty simple.
Well, don't know what happened, but here I am, less than 4 days before Christmas, knitting like a fiend every moment I get. I have dropped most of the projects I planned to do, and one of them is now being finished after Christmas. And I might have to wrap another still on the needles. But the rest I can't really do that with, and so I am insane, sacrificing sleep and a clean house and my sanity, in order to get it done in time. Will I make it? Check back in a few days...we'll see.

Monday, December 20, 2010

Still pregnant, 23 weeks

The baby has definite periods of kicking, mainly mid-morning, mid-afternoon, late evening, and when I am laying down at night. Pretty neat. And I can feel the baby sliding around more, too, not just kicking. I hope the baby will kick a good amount for people on Christmas Eve and Christmas, so that they can feel it. Still haven't had a chance to get Liam to feel the kicking, since he's never around when it's happening steadily.
I weighed myself....120 lbs! I am right where I need to be, which is good because I've always been about two or three pounds behind. I need to keep up with the weight gain, although I really to work on eating better. There is so much good stuff out there and I have been too busy to make sure I eat it. Shame on me.
I am also a full yard around, a little more actually. So growing pretty good. Even though it's very obvious that I am pregnant, I am still encountering coworkers (that I see on a relatively regular basis) that are surprised to find out I am pregnant. Do they think I look fat? Miss Moo Miller, the fatty mini-cow? *sigh*

Anyway, here is the official info from BabyFit for 23 weeks:

(Baby's Off to Dreamland)
Shh! Baby's sleeping! He or she can drift into deeper sleep, known as rapid eye movements (or REM), and baby can dream, too. Just what is baby dreaming about? Meeting you, of course! (Most likely, baby is dreaming about daily life inside the womb--playing with the umbilical cord or hearing your voice.)

(Your Baby This Week )
Your baby weighs about a pound (.45 kg) and is approximately 8 inches (20 cm) long. No more fruit comparisons--now he looks like a perfect, little doll!
Although his skin is still wrinkled, it's starting to plump out as he continues to gain weight and develop more fat. He looks more and more like a "real" baby now, but sometimes the fine hair covering your baby's body grows a little dark around this time.

(Your Body This Week)
As the weight of your uterus once again shifts to rest on your bladder, you may have more problems holding urine. But be aware that a "gush" of liquid or constant leaking could mean that you are losing amniotic fluid, and you should call your doctor right away. You may also experience some emotional mood swings--unexpected highs and lows and maybe even some tears or fears. Emotional swings are linked to normal hormone activity and should pass as your pregnancy progresses. If not, mention it to your doctor.

Happy Birthday, Dawn

Just wanted to wish my sister-in-law a Happy Birthday.

(yes, I haven't remembered to do that on here for anyone else except my husband since I started this birthday Mom, Dad, Dave, Jackie, Sandy, Rachel, Grandmom, Danamarie, and Cole).

Monday, December 13, 2010

22 Weeks or 5 Months

Today I am 22 weeks pregnant. Or 5 months pregnant, for those that prefer to go by months. I feel pretty much the same as last week. A lot more kicking from the baby, which Matt can feel, but no one else really has since the baby doesn't kick all the time. Mainly when I lay down at night, a lot in the morning, and throughout the day at random times. I still haven't gotten a chance to get Liam to feel the kicking.
I am having more soreness again, I guess from ligament stretching. Ugh. And it's hard to move around and to sit down and get back up. I am having more shortness of breath, and definitely periods of heaviness in my heart, which I remember as precursors to me passing out. Hopefully I won't experience that this time around. *sigh*

Here is the belly picture from this week. I PROMISE that as soon as Christmas is past, I will create a page that shows all the belly pictures together for comparison. As well as updating a lot of other areas of my website that are behind. I just have some gifts to finish knitting for Christmas, so I have no spare time.

Official info:
You and baby are both eager to meet each other! Your baby is kicking up a storm, and you feel like you're getting bigger every day.
Your baby weighs more than 12 ounces (.35 kg) and is more than 7 inches (18 cm) long! Baby's eyelids and eyebrows have developed and her muscles are growing stronger--something you can feel by the strength of the movement in your tummy! Your baby is probably moving more regularly now-not just once in a while! After birth, she'll recognize the songs you sing or play for her now, resulting in a soothing effect.

Although your tummy is growing, you should still feel comfortable and energetic enough to bend over easily and move around. Your sex drive may be increasing, and if your health care provider says it's OK, this can be a great chance for intimate bonding with your partner. If you are feeling exceptionally tired, make certain to get a blood test for anemia, which is common during pregnancy.

Monday, December 6, 2010

21 Weeks

The weeks keep ticking by. Not much has changed since my last post, at least in terms of how I feel, etc. Still tired more than I want to be. The baby has phases of rest, and of energetic kicking (though I know this will get even stronger). I know at this point that others would definitely be able to feel the baby kicking, it's just a matter of timing things right and catching the baby when he/she actually is kicking.

Official info:
Your baby weighs more than 10 ounces (.28 kg) and is slightly longer than 7 inches (17 cm), which is about the size of a large banana--but what a personality! The rapid growth phase has slowed, but organs and other body systems continue to mature. The swallowing reflex is in full swing and your baby will begin to "drink" amniotic fluid, which helps his digestive system to develop.
Your baby's oil glands are also starting to produce a waxy substance known as the vernix caseosa, which soothes and protects his skin in the amniotic fluid. And the buds for permanent teeth are forming! There's no smile yet, but that'll happen sooner than you think!

You're gaining weight and your pregnancy is showing, so stand tall and be proud. You're going to be a Mom! As your uterus enlarges, the outermost abdominal muscles pull away from the center of your stomach, resulting in a condition known as diastasis recti. You may see this as a "separation" down the middle of your tummy. It's completely normal and usually resolves after birth, but take care not to do any excessive abdominal workouts, particularly crunches. (After the baby is born, check out the exercise demonstrations to help correct separated stomach muscles. You may also develop more swelling in your feet and legs, which you can relieve by elevating your feet. If you do not experience relief, or if portions of your legs are hot and red, talk to your doctor. You may have a small blockage in a blood vessel.