Sunday, June 26, 2011

Saturday's Copy and Paste


Yes, I'm a little behind. Cut me some slack! I've got a lot going on.

Today's Copy and Paste was inspired by Creativity. The following are things I'd like to make for Bria at some point during her life. So excited!

I hope she enjoys baking sweet treats with me!

Every kid needs a dinosaur tail.

Tissue paper pom poms -- decor for her room (not in gray).

Bria's future mobile.

Melted snowman cookies.

A bapron!

Cute headbands.

Embroidery hoop wall art (not these colors/fabrics).

Baby sling!

Butterfly snack bags -- for packed lunches.

Teether necklace.

That's it for now folks. Once I actually get started on these projects I'll post my process and final products. Wish me luck!

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Today (*yesterday =  Friday June 24th) was another huge reminder that I receive more than I deserve. I am blessed.

Here’s a recap of Friday’s and Saturday’s events:

-I turned 25! Michael and I are now the same age for about three months, then my sweetness will be 26. It’ll be an extra special birthday for him because he’ll also be a daddy by then. We’ll get to celebrate with our little peanut!

-We had our last shower! My wonder coworkers at CBRE threw Michael and I our last shower – and it was great! They went so far as to theme the party a tropical theme – leis were passed out, flowers were put into hair, the cake even had a tropical theme. It was great. :) We received many of the items that we still needed, including the following:

Graco Snugride Infant Carseat Plus Stroller Frame

We're gonna probably use this one the most -- its compact/light weight enough for everyday use. We still plan on getting a jogging stroller, too.
We still need to buy the carseat base (x2). Will be doing that shortly.

And we're also looking forward to buying this swing base!

-I also received a lot of other useful gifts. Bottles, nipples, feeding spoons, sleep sacks, teether toys (sign all you have had is a dog: I called teether toys “chew toys”), some adorable clothes, and great gift cards.

-Because it was also my birthday I received some great birthday presents as well. Gift cards to restaurants, beautiful flowers, chocolate covered strawberries (plug: Shari’s Berries), Adele’s new CD 21, and a Williams Sonoma cutting board.

-The shower took a lot out of us (being the center of attention for that long is exhausting!) so we ended up going home, taking a nap… which turned into sleeping all night (for me. Michael still had to go to work in the pm).

-We felt compelled to get a lot done. I woke up and organized the presents we had gotten the day before, and some existing. There were about 5 bags of return items that I separated out by store, and added gift cards to the bags – ready to go back and get used for things we still need. First we hit Target. After all of the returns and gift cards we had enough to get ourselves our first camcorder! I love home videos and I can’t wait to re-watch the videos we’re going to record within the next few months. Michael will be playing with our newest gadget so that he’s camera-ready on the big day!

-Next stop was Walmart. After returns we had enough to buy the crib mattress! I don’t know why but I’m really stoked about his mattress. It’s pretty to me (?? I dunno…).

-Although only making 2 return stops, we decided to call it a day. We went to eat at

-We plan on making a few more return stops: Kohls, Children’s Place, and Babies R Us.

-I pretty much finished packing our hospital bag (will write more another day about what all is inside).

-I’ve had a few more Braxton Hicks contractions, but nothing of note. They weren’t as bad as that first one.

-I’m not sleeping well. The weight of my belly makes it difficult to stay asleep for very long. We’re trying to get a side-sleeper pillow but haven’t had any luck finding one yet.

-Next week we will be spending lots of time narrowing down the search of houses/apartments.

-The next doctor’s appointment is Wednesday July 6th (T Minus: 11 more days). The doctor will be checking to see if I’m dilated, if the baby has lowered, and will let me know if I will be back every week or every other week until August 2nd.

-I’m treating myself to a pedicure tomorrow. I’ll document how wonderful it is and hope to persuade some other pregnant women to follow in my footsteps (pun intended). I have a feeling it’ll be the best thing for pregnant feet since cushioned house shoes.

Monday, June 20, 2011

Okay so I think I have officially entered the “Feeling Uncomfortable” phase of trimester three. If it’s not one thing then it’s another, lately.
-lower back pain
-swollen jiggly feet
-groin pain (when I try to move too fast)
-constantly hot and sweaty
-my butt/legs hurt (when sitting too long at work)
The list continues.
And there’s STILL so much to do!
(Watch out: crabby insert) My goal for this next weekend is going to be to pack 3 more boxes and view at least one apartment complex. It sucks that all I want to do is sleep, but I have to work every day, pack all my things, [hopefully] find a new home. Then comes the unpacking, and getting ready for baby. It’s another form of torture to keep a pregnant woman from nesting; I feel like I have so much to do but I can’t do any of it because we don’t have a house! (okay, crabbyness done)
Baby update:
We are 43 days away from our scheduled due date! (Which makes me 34 weeks pregnant)
She weighs about 3 ¾ lbs. – about as much as an average cantaloupe.
My daily pregnancy emails have told me: to change positions slowly and deliberately (especially when getting up from lying flat). I need to make sure my blood sugar doesn’t drop too low, so I need to eat regularly. I need to sit in well-ventilated areas, and try to maintain a comfortable body temperature.
Although we are getting closer and I feel like so much is out of my control, I need to remember to pray and to appreciate everything. EVERYTHING. I need to count it all joy (James 1:2 says Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds). All of these loose ends, and physical frustrations, are all bringing me to a final chapter.

So, in an attempt to consider it all joy I’m gonna stop complaining (right now), and start the optimism. Here are some beautiful pictures and thoughts, to start it off:
1.       I am alive and well. You never know when things will just end for you one day and so far I have been given another gift of daily life. Can’t take that for granted.
2.       Bria is alive. But I want her to kick me more; I am starting to feel that she doesn’t enough. I’d rather she bruise my insides than not “talk” to me at all.
3.       I’m gonna get a pedicure this weekend, as a birthday present to myself. Just thinking about the foot and leg massage that comes with it makes me drool. I can’t wait!
4.       I’m officially finished paying off the Baby bill!! That monthly installment can now go towards my stupid car, and getting it fixed, or moving into our new house (when we find it).
5.       Michael is wonderful. I couldn’t ask for a better partner. I know that he tries his hardest, every day, to make me happy. He wants both Bria and I to be happy, healthy, and taken care of. This is the kind of love people dream about!
6.       Mint Chocolate Chip Ice cream. Or any flavor of ice cream. This cold, sweet treat makes me happy.
7.       Fresh flowers. Michael gave me my first ever bouquet of peonies this weekend and wow. I had been told they are pretty and they smell wonderful -- I'm now a peony lover! (the below picture is not of peonies. But I love all pretty flowers)
8.       Puppies. Especially my puppy, Rigby. He reminds me to be happy every day because there really are so many reasons to be!

9.       Daydreaming about beautiful weddings.

10.   Looking forward to getting more sleep (one day, some day...)

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Today was Father's Day! We celebrated because Michael is indeed a father -- Bria may not be here yet but I can tell you right that she's alive and kicking (literally).

Synopsis of Father's Day -1:

Michael worked this morning so I took advantage of the free time to finish up my planned father's day project, based on the picture below:

Are those not adorable gift bags?????

Well, I thought so too but they're definitely -NOT- Michael. He looks great all jazzed up in a button-down shirt and tie but his natural element is in a Peyton Manning jersey.




Michael liking his P. Manning gift bag.

The gift bag doesn't look quite as professional as the inspiration bags, but it was my first go-round at something like this and it was super easy. I already had all of the supplies at home (gift bag, scrapbook paper, glue stick, and xacto knife).

Inside the bag:

Pay no attention to the mess. We're in the process of packing.
Michael's very own Daddy shirt. We're planning on packing this in the hospital bag so he can strut his stuff the day/night she arrives.

This was another easy DIY project. All that's needed is a blank tee shirt (I was looking for a baseball tee, but couldn't find one) and iron-on letters. Don't tell him (//kidding... he reads this blog) but I think I'll continue my search for a blank baseball tee and make him another shirt. :)

There was also a pack of boxers -- needed because our beloved Rigby went thru a phase of destroying Michael's boxers.

After opening the gifts, we took a nap -- four hours of uninterrupted sleep. Was nice!

Then we went to dinner at Spaghetti Warehouse (and lemme just say that the place has gone down hill). I might complain about that experience later. *grumble

Finally we saw The Green Lantern!

All in all it was a great day and I hope Michael (and all the other dad's out there) realize how much they are appreciated. Us women may be carrying the child but the men have to deal with us and our shenanigans. My Michael is a saint and I couldn't ask for a better fiance/future hubby (and Brianna couldn't ask for a better daddy).

We love you, baby!

Bytheway, check out the beautiful peonies Michael got for me as an early birthday present this weekend!! :D

Saturday's Copy and Paste

Saturday's Copy and Paste

(Yes, I realize I'm a little late but I couldn't just OMIT this stuff!)

I may have to make these to put into our new house, at some point. Because they're both true. I especially love the "In this house we do..." list.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Belly Laughs

Rosalind Russell. So gorgeous.

Rosalind Russell once said “Taking joy in life is a woman’s best cosmetic”.
I concur. And this is one of many things that I want to teach my little Bria. I want her to know that “happy girls are pretty girls” (thanks Audrey Hepburn for that quote). I want her to know that she is gorgeous. Because I do remember being a tween/teen and feeling nerdy… not pretty.
Funny #11 (see the other funnies: here)
Swollen feet.
No, it’s not that the actual swelling of the feet is funny, it’s that swollen feet – just like other swollen body parts – jiggle. Try walking around with an obviously swollen right foot (the left wasn’t as bad), that jiggles with every step. It’s the funniest feeling I’ve felt all these seven months!

So, I tend to complain a lot. I try to keep this blog complaint-free but sometimes they sneak on here. It’s natural, I think. I mean – my entire body has already changed, and its gonna continue changing until I won’t be able to recognize myself in past pictures. Things happen so fast, and in such extremes, that it’s hard to keep y our eye on the prize.
But today is not a complaining-kinda day. I was inspired by the below picture to purposefully write 10 things about pregnancy that makes me happy:

10. Dreams. They’re radical, man. Nothing quite compares to the imagination of a pregnant woman. They are unexpected, sometimes scary, often foreboding. I have seen her face a million times in my dreams, so until she arrives it’s my favorite place to be.

9. Nice Strangers. Everywhere I go my belly draws smiles, and extra courtesy. What touches my heart most is a man, whom I’ve never met, being as gentle and as kind as if he were my own brother. Those walking in our society who are supposed to be the rough and tough have the most tender hearts.

8. Nice Friends. And family! It’s overwhelming how wonderful people are during this time of pregnancy. I’m not used to the whole shower-thing so opening presents, given by all of my wonderful friends and family members, has given me a whole new level of humbledom (made up word! Yess!).

7. Sustenance. Food and water – the source of mine and my baby’s growth and development – has never tasted so good. These cravings I’ve talked about are some sort of blessing given by God himself for all of the hard work it will be to become a mother. It’s my lifelong goal now to cherish every meal like I have been cherishing it during pregnancy.

6. Getting away with it. I’ll have to say I never thought I’d be the type of woman who uses “the pregnant card”… but I do. There’s no guilt anymore for all the things I do while pregnant (can we say: ice cream? Laziness?), but really its because these treats only last a while and there’s a reasoning behind the madness. Pregnancy is a gift, and it could terminate at any moment. Taking care of mom should be everyone’s top priority. So if that means she flashes the pregnancy card and says she wants a pint of mint chocolate chip ice cream (BECAUSE she’s pregnant), then daggumit Give it to her!

5. Humor. Laughing may not come to mind when you think of pregnancy. More often it’s the crying and the bitchiness that people think of when they’re talking about being preggo. Let me tell you right now: your attitude is a choice, hormones or not. Everyone is allowed a few collapses into tears/bursts of anger… but for the majority of the time YOU can choose HOW you view this period in your life. So I may have chosen this, or it may really be a pregnant-thing: I love to laugh. I’m learning to laugh with life instead of fight it. Take all of these changes and find the humor instead of the trauma.

4. My Body. I may be gaining weight and my doctor may disapprove but, I love my body. The extra boobage is super awesome (although short lived) and the luscious hair is pretty cool too. But even my bulging belly and swelling feet make me feel sexy. I may have to roll rather than walk, but this is the first time in the history of my physique-conscious-life that I have ever loved every physical part of myself.

3. Michael: fiancé to father. Watching Michael transform from boyfriend to fiancé to father has been beyond touching. The way he holds my hand, the way he touches my belly, the way he talks to Brianna. It’s his protective and loving instinct and it keeps me falling further and further in love with the man every day.

2. Baby Movements. Nothing is quite as magical as feeling your baby toss and turn inside your belly. I can be lost in computer screens at work, dealing with a stressful situation, saddened by the world… and suddenly I feel a kick and a twirl. It’s like Bria’s and my own private conversation and it’s wonderful.

1. It’s all worth it. Knowing that although this list of happies is short, the list of complaints is long. I know this and understand that I’m an annoying whiny baby. But I also know that it will ALL be worth it in the end. I’ll take on feet the size of watermelons, heat flashes from hell, and heartburn without a cure if it means bringing Brianna happily, safely, and as healthy as can be into this world.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

FIRST: I woke up early this morning, with right lower back pain and a stiff stomach. Considering I have never felt the pains of labor before I was concerned that I was feeling just that. But after a few minutes of rubbing my back and breathing it out, the pain faded and my belly returned to its less rock-solid phase… and it’s all stayed that way.
So I’m guessing I felt my first Braxton Hicks contraction today. The body’s getting ready!

But anyway,
They say a couple should find a plant, take care of the plant, and if that plant survives and thrives for a year they should graduate to a dog.
Find a dog, take care of that dog, and if that dog thrives and survives for a year, they should graduate to a baby.
Michael and I skipped the plant part (and to be honest I’ve never had much of a green thumb. Try as I might, potted plants tend to die when they belong to me). We did, however, do the dog bit. In case you haven’t met him yet… meet Rigby. He is my first child; my little boy. And WOW has he challenged us!

Rigby’s Life in Summary: The Rigster is a Cajun dog; he was adopted from Michael’s mom who lives in Louisiana, when he was just a few months old. He was the largest pup in the group, and the most friendly – which is what prompted Michael to bring him to me as an early birthday present in May of 2009.

Rigby on his first drive up from LA to TN.
We’ve had our share of speculations on what type of dog Rigby is. All we can say is that he obviously has German Shepherd and Lab in his blood. Others have guessed at Boxer (he has the energy for this), Rhodesian Ridgeback (looks a lot like these dogs, and has the raised fur down the spine), and Great Dane (he’s goofy, clumsy, and friendly).
Young Rigby.

I can definitely say we have lived thru the trials and tribulations of having a dog. We’ve experienced it all: housebreaking, biting walls, jumping on people, not minding, teaching him basic commands, even some snapping back when being disciplined. In many ways I can see how having a dog before a baby can teach you about what is to come. Some lessons I’ve learned while teaching, loving, crying over my dear boy:

Larger Rigby.
-Bribes get the job done… but now you’re stuck for life. For a while we used a clicker to train Rigby. The concept is easy: Make a demand and click the clicker when the dog obeys. This is immediately followed by praise and a food treat, and eventually the clicker will not be needed. We’ve taught Rigby enough so that he doesn’t need the clicker any more, but we have said device. To this day, if you click it, he will expect something delicious. Lesson learned: think before you bribe. You may be in over your head!
-You can never have enough patience. There are days when you sit down and bawl, because your dog just crapped in the back seat of your car for the millionth time (or he ran off and won’t come back to your whistle, or he wants to play when you want to rest, etc.). There are those days when you kick yourself for praising your high-patience attitude because really, there’s never enough to go around.
-You’re not going to be a perfect parent. I’ve made my fair share of mistakes with raising Rigby and I always wish I could give him more. For instance: I take Rigby’s collar off when I give him a bath, and am generally never in a rush to put it back on. Recently Rigby escaped the backyard, and it happened to be a day after a bath – and I had no put his collar on. He was out, he was lost, and he was unidentifiable. I was a mess. WHAT KIND OF PARENT AM I???, I kept asking myself. A terrible one. But people are good, and a nice man had found him, held him, and taken care of him until we could meet up. Rigby is back and that damn collar is on 24/7. Parents are constantly learning too.
-We can learn from dogs; probably more than they can learn from us. Just like children dogs see the world in a state of innocence (except for those that come from broken homes). Rigby is beyond joyful when I come home. He forgives quickly. He enjoys simple things like good food. He is loyal to those who love him most, and hurt him most – and I know he always will be. Can’t we learn a little from that?

One of Rigby's first baths.
-We truly do learn about our "children" like no one else can. I know what Rigby's various vocal mumblings/grumblings mean (I'm having a nightmare/Someone is coming into the house/Let me out, I wanna play/I'm tired). I know that he loves to swim and his favorite game is fetch -- especially if he's fetching out of the water. I know an emergency whimper when I hear one (Note: He whimpered once before when he had a thorn stuck in his paw. Although he has fake whimpered before to get something he wanted, I knew that this whimper was serious). I know that he loves to get his ears cleaned out, and what kind of noise Michael can make that will drive him completely nuts (I know it but I can't mimick it). I know that he has birth marks on both cheeks (two on his right cheek), and one under his chin.

Rigby may be one of the roots of my madness, but it’s Good Madness. Why would I want anything less?

(In celebration of our doggie babies, here is a plug for a friend of mine who has dedicated a blog to her "little monster": Click)

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Michael said to me: “One thing I’d say you’re just as good at, if not better than photography, is cooking.”

That type of statement had me soaring above the clouds. Knowing that my fiancé loves my cooking is a wonderful feeling. I hope Brianna loves my cooking as much too.

If I lived a second life I would opt for culinary school. I would move to a foodie city (Denver, NY, Boston, Chicago, DC) to pursue a different dream. I wouldn’t look for love but look for plane tickets; I’d travel the world to taste all of the many tastes. I’d not have a dog, I’d not have a fiancé, and I surely wouldn’t have a baby on the way.

But cooking healthy, tasty, homey, motherly, feel-good meals for my family sounds like a life I’d much rather live. I do try to experiment in the kitchen and thank goodness I am engaged to a man who enjoys my culinary experiments. He not only encourages them but he helps me in the kitchen – he keeps me company, chops onions, slices chicken breast, stirs pots, suggests flavors, and is my sounding board. He is also the Master Griller (do I need to remind you about his mango chipotle chicken skewers, with pineapple and cherries?).

Cooking wasn’t something I was immediately drawn to as a child. My mom would offer to teach me but I didn’t ever want to learn. It wasn’t until I was in my early twenties did I realize the complete joy I got out of cooking, and have been rolling along since then. I don’t necessarily expect Bria to love cooking like I do (but I’m gonna sew her her own little apron anyway) – as long as she loves what I cook/bake for her like I love what my mom cooks/bakes for me.

With that being said you may occasionally see a recipe on this blog. I may experiment with something to the point of adding it to my recipe catalog for repeat use. The following was an experiment I did last week that ended up being something that stuck out in our heads.

“This is my new favorite dish,” Michael said to me. A few days later he requested it for dinner. I love when that happens.

Asian Orange Chicken
(Think: Your local Chinese restaurant – I know they all have something like this on the menu. Bytheway, don’t let the long list of ingredients detour you. After making once I eyeballed most of the ingredients – not worrying about measuring cuts down on the time.)

The Sauce

1 ½ cups water
2 tablespoons orange juice (I squeezed an entire fresh orange for the juice once and used concentrate another time. Both are great.)
¼ cup lemon juice
1/3 cup rice vinegar (I used white wine vegar)
2 ½ tablespoons gsoy sauce
2 tablespoons grated orange zest (I zested an entire orange, before squeezing it for its juice)
1 cup packed brown sugar
½ teaspoon minced fresh ginger root (I didn’t have any on hand)
½ teaspoon minced garlic
2 tablespoons chopped green onion
¼ teaspoon red pepper flakes

2 tablespoons cornstarch
2 tablespoons water

2-4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into ½ inch pieces
1 cup all-purpose flour
¼ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon pepper
3 tablespoons olive oil

1.     1. Pour 1 ½ cup water, orange juice, lemon juice, vinegar, soy sauce into a pan and set over medium-high heat. Stir in the orange zest, brown sugar, ginger, garlic, chopped onion, and red pepper flakes. Bring to a boil. Remove from heat and cool 10 to 15 minutes.

2.     2. Place the chicken pieces into a resealable plastic bag. When contents of saucepan have cooled, pour 1 cup of sauce into bag.  Reserve the remaining sauce. Seal the bag, and refrigerate at least 1 hour (2 if you can).

3.     3. In another resealable plastic bag, mix the flour, salt, and pepper. Add the marinated chicken pieces, seal the bag, and shake to coat.

4.     4. Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Place chicken into skillet, and brown on both sides (try turning as little as possible. Letting the chicken get dark brown and crispy is not a bad thing). Move chicken pieces to a cookie sheet and put into a 200 degree oven for about 10-15 minutes (long enough for the oil to dry, and chicken to be cooked thru). Take chicken out and press with paper towels to remove excess oil.

5.     5. Bring your remaining orange sauce to a boil over medium-high heat. Mix together cornstarch and water; stir into sauce. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer for about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.

 b  I serve this family-style: in a large dish I empty about 3 cups of cooked rice, then add chicken on top, followed by the orange sauce. Let everyone serve themselves out of this dish.

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Saturday's Copy and Paste

“First, Lord: No tattoos. May neither Chinese symbol for truth nor Winnie-the-Pooh holding the FSU logo stain her tender haunches. May she be Beautiful but not Damaged, for it’s the Damage that draws the creepy soccer coach’s eye, not the Beauty. When the Crystal Meth is offered, may she remember the parents who cut her grapes in half And stick with Beer. Guide her, protect her when crossing the street, stepping onto boats, swimming in the ocean, swimming in pools, walking near pools, standing on the subway platform, crossing 86th Street, stepping off of boats, using mall restrooms, getting on and off escalators, driving on country roads while arguing, leaning on large windows, walking in parking lots, riding Ferris wheels, roller-coasters, log flumes, or anything called “Hell Drop,” “Tower of Torture,” or “The Death Spiral Rock ‘N Zero G Roll featuring Aerosmith,” and standing on any kind of balcony ever, anywhere, at any age. Lead her away from Acting but not all the way to Finance. Something where she can make her own hours but still feel intellectually fulfilled and get outside sometimes And not have to wear high heels. What would that be, Lord? Architecture? Midwifery? Golf course design? I’m asking You, because if I knew, I’d be doing it, Youdammit. May she play the Drums to the fiery rhythm of her Own Heart with the sinewy strength of her Own Arms, so she need Not Lie With Drummers. Grant her a Rough Patch from twelve to seventeen.Let her draw horses and be interested in Barbies for much too long, For childhood is short – a Tiger Flower blooming Magenta for one day – And adulthood is long and dry-humping in cars will wait. O Lord, break the Internet forever, that she may be spared the misspelled invective of her peers And the online marketing campaign for Rape Hostel V: Girls Just Wanna Get Stabbed. And when she one day turns on me and calls me a Bitch in front of Hollister, Give me the strength, Lord, to yank her directly into a cab in front of her friends, For I will not have that Shit. I will not have it. And should she choose to be a Mother one day, be my eyes, Lord, that I may see her, lying on a blanket on the floor at 4:50 A.M., all-at-once exhausted, bored, and in love with the little creature whose poop is leaking up its back. “My mother did this for me once,” she will realize as she cleans feces off her baby’s neck. “My mother did this for me.” And the delayed gratitude will wash over her as it does each generation and she will make a Mental Note to call me. And she will forget. But I’ll know, because I peeped it with Your God eyes. Amen.” -Tina Fey

Friday, June 10, 2011

Just getting better and better...

Well 2011 has proven to be a groundbreaking year for me.

First (incase you weren’t aware//sarcasm), Michael and I found out we were pregnant. We have spent the entire year so far preparing for baby Bria to make her arrival. We’ve had major highs and major lows during the process but overall we have fallen more and more in love with each other. We’ve discovered we’re a great team:

When one is stressed, the other is calm.
When one is sad, the other makes them happy.
When one is mad, the other calms them down.
When one is embarrassed, the other loves their flaws.
When one is silly, they’re both silly.
When one is happy, they’re both happy.
When one needs help, the other helps.
Michael is the cheese to my macaroni.
He is the peanut butter to my jelly.
He is the shoelaces to my sneakers (and keeps me held together sometimes).
He is the ketchup to my French fries (or bbq sauce, or mustard… whatever my pregnancy craving is at the time).
And he is most definitely the icing to my cake (and Bria will be the cherry on top).

So, with all of that said, I now introduce you to the point of this post:


What happened was this…

June 9th 2011 I found out that the wonderful people of CBRE were planning a baby shower for us on my upcoming birthday (Friday, June 24th). I texted Michael and let him know the exciting news but he wasn’t too thrilled. I couldn’t understand why he was so frustrated, but he kept saying “I have something planned! I can’t just reschedule.” It never dawned of me what exactly he had planned.

I came home from work and I cooked us a late dinner of bulgogi (Korean bbq) and rice. It tasted delicious but we didn’t get to bed until 11ish and that’s when I started to feel sick. I’ve been getting stomach craps after dinner for the past week or so (Wednesday night was pretty bad too) but this gave Michael a reason to ask me to stay home on Friday from work. I woke Friday morning feeling tired, drained, and still with a little stomach sickness (think: 1st trimester all over again) but probably would have gone to work if Michael hadn’t stressed me staying home today.

Michael had been up later than me – preparing his body for the night shift he’ll be working tonight (as he does every Friday). He saw me wake up and came to me. We talked for a while and he explained to me that he really wanted my birthday to be special – he had planned something big but now was afraid it wasn’t going to turn out how he wanted. He didn’t want to sound unappreciative of the shower being thrown for us but everything kind of hinged on Friday June 24th. Finally he said to me “Marie, I have a very important question to ask you.”

“What is it?”, I asked.

“Marie, will you be my wife?”

I took  in a breath, smiled, and started to tear up.
“Of course! Yes yes yes, a million times yes!”

The ring had been sent from Louisiana, because it belonged to his mom. Michael’s step dad recently bought his mom a new ring for their 10 year anniversary so she had this one ready. The three of them all conspired to get the ring up here and ready for the big moment, but the postman had come too early the day before. Michael and I went to the post office this morning and that is when I first saw the gorgeous ring.

It’s pale yellow gold with a cluster of white diamonds and sapphires. It’s not too big (cause I’m not a big-jewelry kinda person) and it’s not too flashy (cause I’m not a flashy-jewelry kinda person). It’s simple yet different (I LOVE the sapphires!), it’s dainty yet it sparkles. It has history and I’d love to pass it down to Brianna one day. It’s perfect for me.

Michael’s plan for my proposal was different than what happened but to me it was perfect. I’m still smiling (stomach ache now gone), and I can’t stop looking at he ring. It’s so surreal to me – I’ve had seven months to let the pregnancy thing sink in, but now here I am ENGAGED! In one moment everything has changed again, and of course its for the better. The much better.

I always knew Bria would know us as mommy and daddy – married, engaged, or not Michael and I love each other and plan on showering our baby girl with love. We plan on teaching her what love looks like. We want her to know that romance and love exist – because I am certain it does. 

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Pregnancy Survey

How Far Along: 32 weeks/3 days

Size of Baby: 3.25 lbs – about a foot long (about as big as a squash)

Total Weight Gain/Loss: Who decided to put “loss” on this survey? (I'm too embarressed to put my weight gain......)

Complaints: Sleepiness, heartburn. Small nothings in the grand scheme of things.

Girl, Boy, Team Green: Girl!

Cravings: Currently = Peanut Butter and Jelly sandwiches. Due to the weight gain I'm swearing off pb&j though. I'm satisfying my food cravings with pictures of foods... and of delicious smells.

Picture of food #1.

Picture of food #2.

Picture of food #3.

Stretchmarks?: None so far – thanks to cocoa butter lotion.

What are you looking forward to this week?: It was the doctor’s appointment but now that that’s passed I’m looking forward to the weekend. Weekend=sleep.

What's on the top of your To-Do List?: Thank you cards (we ordered them and they finally came in)!

Have you packed your hospital bag yet?  If not, when?:  Yes I have, but it’s a work in progress. I feel like I will need more than what I have currently packed.