Saturday, October 18, 2008

Tripod & crummy camera...

I wanted to get some good "pregnant pictures" before it's too late....which isn't much longer! I didn't want to spend any money on "extras" right now, so we resorted to the next best (or more like the last best) thing. A tripod and crummy camera with a timer. 
We kind of crammed this "shoot" in between a work cookout and our weekly Friday night dinner with friends, combined with a bright high noon sun, a strong breeze and a park full of kids, dogs and occasional homeless person....and this is what we got. Once I got over my frustration of not being or having a professional photographer telling me what the heck to do, we just had fun and and enjoyed being out in the beautiful weather and doing this together. 
I can check one more thing of my ever shortening list and am counting down the last weeks left..... sometimes patiently, sometimes not so much :-)

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

9 months of perspective

I had my 36 wk apt today and everything is just perfect-o and right on target. She did a brief ultrasound to get baby measurements and estimated Willow is about 6lbs 2oz right now.... several weeks still to go! So I'm on track for a chunky, umm, healthy baby!
It's always good to hear positive reinforcement that all is continuing to be well and we're both super healthy; although I did remark "then why do I feel so blah and bad?". My Dr. just laughed and replied "because you're 36 weeks pregnant and have been doing this for almost 9 months and you're ready to have a baby!" 
Oh, yeah.

I was filling out a new calender yesterday, looking through my old planner to transfer birthdays and important dates.....and was reminded, by red ink pen, when this all began. It's hard to believe it's been 9 months, and flipping through my old calender gave me great visual perspective. I know that in those first few weeks and early months after her birth, I will need constant reminders to keep perspective. Perspective to take one day at a time, and at the same time not get too frazzled, frustrated or dissapointed when one day doesn't go as planned or how I anticipated. 
I've often struggled with giving myself reasonable time and space to process changes and circumstances, often pushing myself to "just do it" or "get over it".  I know giving birth and becoming a mom is one of the biggest changes I'll ever make (a bit of an understatement), so I know now, more than ever, I need to extend the same grace to myself that I hope others will as I sift through emotions and questions and elation and worry.  

From now on it's perspective, grace-filled, one day at a time.  
Remind me in a month :-)

Thursday, October 9, 2008


(newborn Justin...he was a chunky fella!)
(Justin around 2 months old. He still has napping down to an art)

Yesterday (Oct. 8th) was Justin's birthday. He's been pretty busy and stretched to the max with work and school requirements, trying to get some big things accomplished before Willow comes. We were able to have a relaxed, quiet evening together with no homework, papers or work-duty calls or mishaps. It was low-key (which is GREAT since he's in need of low key right now) and wonderful to just visit and enjoy some quiet, sweet time. 
He received a card from his grandparents and we were tickled to find some baby pictures of him inside. Of course it made us talk about what the combo of the two of us will look like in little Willow..... I have to say that I think her 3D ultrasound image seen here looks a bit like him! Just a few more weeks and we'll be able to see for ourselves.
I'm just so overwhelmingly thankful and proud to be partnered with such a loving, humble, patient, consistent, discerning, diligent, giving man. I am SO excited to see Justin take on the role of father and have been amazed at how he's already embraced that role and made adjustments before she's even arrived. She is going to adore her Daddy! 
I sure do :-)

Thursday, October 2, 2008


                                                                                                             (34wks pregnant)   

It's been interesting as I've been preparing myself and our home for Willow's arrival that there is definitely a "theme" running through everything. Cleanliness. I've been cleaning everything: sterilizing, boiling, dusting, scrubbing, wiping anything in my path. I even washed my car. *If you've never seen an 8.5  month pregnant lady washing her car, trust's amusing.*

Now I'd say I'm a pretty laid back person when it comes to dirt and grime. I certainly don't mind dirt and am probably one of the few ICU nurses who is not a germ-a-phobe (although I probably should be.) So why this clean freak streak? Don't get me wrong, I think a brand new baby should be in a clean environment and to some degree protected from nastiness until they get a good strong immunity on board, but that's not the point for me. 
I believe it comes from a strong urge to protect, to preserve her as long as possible from the harshness and "dirt" of this world. To cocoon her in an untainted little world far away from the influence of sin and depravity and, well, society in general. As I've realized this and thought about it, I know that's in some ways my role, but in most ways it's ridiculous. Willow will come into this world fresh and new and sweet...... and a sinner in need of grace and forgiveness just as we all are. That's somewhat hard for me to swallow, thinking that my precious little bundle has a sin nature, will be willfully disobedient, will choose at times wrong over right, will hurt feelings, will ignore truth and sometimes just be plain old bad. 
But it's also somewhat freeing to realize. Knowing that because of our sin, because of our free-will to choose, we are separated from God apart from accepting and receiving his free gift of salvation through the sacrifice of his Son Jesus. That's our only "protection", our only "preservation", our only hope. I can't clean my house, my car, mySELF enough to justify and rectify anything. And I can't do it for Willow either. I can guide her, teach her, pray for her and encourage her, but it's her choice, her relationship to accept and develop,  just like mine is.
And we just might do it covered in dirt and germs :-)

Okay, I'm going to post a bunch of random pictures from over the past week or so, and then I'll actually write something! 
#1. Justin making a one-of-a-kind onesie for Willow at our baby shower.
#2. Opening a gift someone had mailed to the shower from far away. So special.
#3. Some of the folks at our co-ed shower thrown by John and Mena. Everyone made personalized onesies for Willow.... a very cool idea. She's got a HUGE variety to last through babyhood!
#4. Little pink laundry! I've started washing and putting away's so strange to see them in my house!
#5. I made a supply of cloth baby wipes to go with my cloth diapering adventure. Choosing the fabric was the hard part; so many precious patterns. I should have a supply to last through diapering years, all for less than $6!

So those are just a few of the things we've been doing this past week, mixed in with several nights of insomnia and Wonder Years marathons. It's been great to be off from work and I've been able to get a lot of "piddling" accomplished (is piddling an accomplishment?) while balancing resting and nesting. Since I've had this stretch of sleepless nights, I've been so grateful not to have to go to work and be responsible for someone's well-being!  I've paid close attention to my body and often after a morning of being busy, I have pretty bad headaches, eye pressure, and my brain goes to mush and I'm just pooped. To have the freedom to say "I'm done" and go put my feet up is great.
It's been VERY hot here the past week, and looking at the forecast we should have a break and FALL might be coming to town! I'm so excited and ready to embrace it...I'll probably celebrate with a pumpkin by my door and walnut, chocolate chip pumpkin muffins. They are SO yummy and make the house smell delicious. And I only gained 1 lb between my last two Dr. appointments, so I feel entitled!