Tuesday, May 26, 2009


This post may be a little picture-ful. I'd apologize, but I'm not really that sorry! I know that if I were to update more regularly, I wouldn't get stuck with a post full of pictures like that, but well, it happens, right?

First up: Mother's Day. This year was my first to celebrate mother's day as a mother-to-be. It was quite the paradigm shift for me. I like the new layering to my relationship with my own mother - almost a sisterhood. I hope this title of "mother" is one that I can grow into. As of now, I feel grossly inadequate.

My wonderful husband got me a colorful bunch of tulips for Mother's Day. I love tulips - they are happy flowers. Unfortunately, they don't stay happy in temperatures like we have had this month, but they brought joy to our table for several days!

I went to the high school choir concert last week to support a good number of my laurel class. They sounded wonderful! It made me miss my days of singing with others - I miss having music in my life like that. 

I wasn't the only one to enjoy the music. For the first time, I felt the stirrings of life in my womb. The louder the music got, the more that little baby moved. I was so awestruck, it was as if I didn't even hear the music I was focusing so intently on the small sensation that I wasn't sure I hadn't imagined. A magical experience!

Me & Amber
Amber & Macy
The bump (at 20 weeks)

Today was a monumental day. Today was the first day I've had to use a rubber-band because I could not button my pants. Initially, I had to remind myself that it was a good thing - this burgeoning of life. It's not that I'm just gaining weight and shape. My body is working in overdrive to create a new earthly home for a choice spirit to inhabit. It's an honor! 

Baby bump at 21 weeks (sorry, I had to take this one by myself since Brent and I are rarely home for two minutes together, but you get the idea)
Bump appears different from different angles, but it's there alright!

Ultrasound pictures at last! The still frames really do not capture the incredible experience of seeing your baby alive and moving. It's an overwhelming experience. 

This first one is when baby is about 13 weeks old. 

The next pictures are from our 20 week ultrasound. I was floored by what they could actually see. A four-chambered heart, kidneys, spine, developing brain. Because I hadn't really felt any movement yet when these were taken, it was a relief to me to see someone moving in there. I had been worried!

Here are baby's feet. The ultrasound technician said they look like big feet already. Oh dear! What have I gotten myself into?
Here you can see the shape of baby's face. It's amazing to me that there are already teeth forming in the skull. 
Baby was playing with it's feet. Here you can see the little arm reaching up to grab corresponding little toes. So sweet!
Baby was so cooperative for all the shots. The technician was excited because they don't always cooperate. I think the tech got a picture of every structure she needed to see. It was the first time I was proud of my little one. 
Baby was so cooperative that we even got to learn the gender of our baby. Are you ready? It's a boy! He wasn't as good about holding still for those pictures, but she did get a definitive shot of him. Brent was so convinced that we were having a girl, that I loved the look of shock on his face as he absorbed that information. My first thought was, "alright, mission prep it is!" We are both thrilled to have this little guy be joining our family in just a few short months. (I say short because the last 5 have flown by). Now to prepare for his arrival . . . and pick a name. We have favorites, but I have the feeling we'll have to see him before we can decide who he is. 

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Morro Bay

Last weekend, I had the incredible opportunity to camp and hike and play with some of the fabulous young women in my ward. We went to Morro Bay, near San Luis Obispo. I had never been to Morro Bay before. It was absolutely beautiful, and I cannot wait to return!

I loved being with the girls. I loved sleeping near the roar of the ocean (we were far enough away that it was just a low thrum, but you could feel it). I loved seeing so many different types of trees and animals. Apparently, the eucalyptus that are one of the most prevalent features of that area are not indigenous. To see huge California Condors in flight was an awesome experience. I don't think I've ever been quite that close to such an impressive wingspan. Another highlight was picking weeds for the wonderful brother who brought our gear up to his beach house for us. We'd have slept in the open on the cold ground without his gracious assistance. Weed-picking was the least we could do to say thank you. 

The following are just a few of the many pictures. I somehow failed to get any of me. Sorry! But, you can see what a great time we had. The pictures aren't exactly in chronological order, sorry!

All smiles!
The whole crew
The beautiful waterfall and pool we found on our hike.
Our fearless leader
The gorgeous mountains we hiked through. Honestly, this picture doesn't even begin to show how dense the foliage is here. (Watch out for poison oak!)
Sam was so proud to have caught this little guy. Approximately 3 seconds after this picture was taken, the lizard proceeded to jump at my face, resulting in the screams of the surrounding 7 girls. 
Morro Rock, the volcanic plug that is the outstanding feature of Morro Bay.
Happy to be going home? I think they were just happy to know that they would be getting their electronic devices (phones, ipods, etc.) back soon.
The fairy pond.

A love a happy group in the morning

We got a little silly.

Our campground. The ocean was literally steps away from here. Several dozen steps, perhaps, but steps nonetheless. 

Friday, May 15, 2009

Conservative spending = conservative trending

I heard the most interesting report on the radio today. Apparently the new trend in clothing, at least nationally, is modesty. I was taken off-guard by this, and thus I failed to take proper note of all the details. The story explained, basically that the old adage is at play once again: "Hemlines rise and fall with the stock market." 

This is one adage I'd never heard before, but I can see the trend. The booming times of the 20's and the 60's were notorious for shorter skirts. In the recent times of prosperity, I have been shocked to see shirts get lower, skirts and shorts get shorter, and in general everything has gotten tighter. 

The report indicated that has people become more conservative in their spending, they don't try to stick to the seasonal trend as much, favoring clothes that will last longer and be more versatile. In times of tight economy, people tend to favor comfort clothes over the skimpy, trendy look. Apparently skin isn't always in. 

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

A shift

Gravity has shifted.

Not gravity in the sense of the moon and the tides - more like my personal center of gravity has shifted, and is now forever altered. 

Physically, my center feels lower. There's definitely a noticeable bulge in the region of my lower abdomen. I feel a new but not unpleasant pressure there if I lay on my stomach - that is what gave the shift away. It changed overnight. I'd had a small "baby bump" there for a while but not enough for the average bystander to suspect a reason for my weight gain (read: "spare tire"). 

Emotionally, I'm noticing a smaller, subtler, yet definite shift. My hands wander to my abdomen (and with them, my thoughts) - as if to occasionally reassure us both. I'm beginning to think more about this new little person my body is busily preparing an earthly home for. What will this person look like? What kind of personality will he/she have? My questions are quickly becoming numberless.

All the while, I hope I can be a good mother. I'm feeling an intellectual and a spiritual shift in my world as I try to prepare myself for, what I'm sure is going to be a hands-on training experience. I haven't seen the Mom manual in the mail yet, so hands-on is all it could be. 

I'm realizing that no aspect of my life is left untouched. It's as if I am no longer the center but have started to orbit like the moon. I'm sure this is just the beginning, but I like where this is going.  

Sunday, May 3, 2009

It's a toss-up

My brother had an interesting epiphany the other day. Of all my cousins who have children, there has been a little pattern. My guy cousins have had daughters first, and my girl cousins have all had sons first. Even my brother and his lovely wife are having a daughter first (coming June 2009). To this pattern, there has only been one deviation (one out of ten . . . ) 

So, while my husband is convinced that we’re having a girl, it’s looking like there’s a high probability I’ll be having a son first. I guess we’ll find out in about 2 weeks. 

In the meantime, this has been a fun new toy.