Wednesday, September 29, 2010

9 Weeks and Counting

I am now 31 weeks pregnant, with just 9 weeks to go. It's pretty crazy that that's all we're down to. Crazy and a little scary! I had Mike take this picture last week when I was 30 weeks along.

I'm feeling like I've got a pretty good-sized belly on me these days, especially when I look back 10 weeks to my 20 week picture. For the most part things are still going pretty smoothly. My varicose veins are a bit worse, though. I finally gave in and decided that since I am wearing jeans more now, I could try out a compression stocking on my right leg. The doctor suggested I try a knee-high stocking to begin with even though the veins go up the back of my leg. The first couple of days of wearing the stocking I felt fine. On about the fourth day, I started having serious pain behind my right knee. I could not even bend my knee because it hurt so badly. After about 10 hours of wearing the stocking and suffering, I decided to take the darn thing off. Unfortunately, the pain continued even though I had taken the stocking off. Thankfully I had a doctor's appointment the next day. At the end of my regular appointment, the doctor had a nurse call to schedule a venous duplex, which is an ultrasound to check the blood flow through the veins. One of the other nurses at the office mentioned something about this being an emergency procedure that needed to happen very soon. The ultrasound office had two appointments- one at 12:30 and one at 3:00. It was 12:10 at the time, I had waited to see my doctor for over40 minutes (my appointment was scheduled for 11:05), and I had a hair appointment (cut AND highlight) scheduled at 12:30. If you're female, you know how important those hair appointments are and how hard they can be to reschedule, so I promptly said I'd take the 3:00 appointment to check out my possible blood clots. I had to make sure my hair looked decent, right? So I basically rushed from one appointment to the next all day. Ob/Gyn appointment to hair appointment to vein appointment. I speed-walked into the ultrasound place, told them what I was there for, and the front-desk lady informed me that I had to be in a wheelchair. So there I sat, feeling like a moron for having to sit and be wheeled around in a wheelchair. Anyway, the ultrasound showed that while I do not have deep vein thrombosis (the really bad kind of blood clot), I do have some smaller, superficial blood clots. After talking to a nurse from my Ob/Gyn's office, I had orders to take one baby Aspirin a day, use a warm compress on my leg a 2-3 times a day, keep exercising (the good news), and no long car rides (the bad news since I was planning on driving to my sister's place in Minneapolis the next day). We worked out a plan for the long car ride (I would get out and walk around 3 times in the 4 hour drive), and I found out that the plan I had to get a massage over the weekend was not meant to be. Bummer, but something I could deal with if it was what the doctor thought was best.

So, aside from the varicose veins and the blood clots, things are going ok. I'm still able to do kickboxing, though I expect that may not last a whole lot longer. I still have some pain behind my right knee where the clots are, but it's very mild compared to what it was last week. I have to go back to the doctor this week to check on the clots again, so I'm hopeful that I'll get good news that they have gone away.

So that's pretty much it. The boys are getting more excited about the baby. Zach was laying with his head on my belly the other day and got a little jolt. He looked at me with huge eyes as I told him that what he felt was the baby having the hiccups. He thought that was very cool. Drew likes to talk to the baby now and then, and Zach wants to make sure that we don't celebrate his half-birthday (on Dec. 8) at school until after the baby is born (due date Dec. 5), because he wants to be able to show the baby at school. I hope the boys love the baby as much after s/he is here as they do now.

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Hawkeye Boys

Mike and his dad took Zach and Drew to the Hawkeye game yesterday. It was Drew's first game, and unfortunately it was very rainy. From what I've heard, the only problem was in putting the rain poncho on Drew (he was pretty mad about that), but after a little while he adjusted and apparently was ok with it. He thought the best part was eating popcorn and a hot dog, and Zach thought the best part was all the scoring the Hawkeyes did. I'm glad they had fun.

Here are a few pictures I snapped before the game. I think the first one is my favorite, but I do love them all.

Friday, September 24, 2010


We had a little fun playing Jenga yesterday. Zach and I got our tower up to 29 layers before it toppled, and we took these pictures just before that.

Zach did a pretty good job taking this picture.

The box says that you start with 18 layers and that you can as much as double that number if you're good. When Mike and Zach played later on last night, they got to 35 layers. Here's Zach in action.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Sick and Tired

Today the boys and I were at the mall, and we'd been doing a lot of walking around. Mike and I had to switch cars for the day, so I didn't have a stroller with me. Drew did fine with all the walking, but at one point he said to me, "Mom, I sick and tired of running." I guess I was walking a little too fast for him.

Later we were in the family bathroom at the mall just before lunch. Drew was about to potty and Zach made the hand-dryer start up, which Drew did not care for. He hates the noise of those things. I asked Zach not to make it start again until Drew and I were not in the bathroom, and Drew said, "Yeah, Zach, I sick and tired of that noise." I told Zach we could use the paper towels to dry our hands, and said that I liked those better anyway, and he said, "Well, you shouldn't, Mom, because they're not reusable and this is." I'm so glad my green side is being soaked up by my 5 year-old!

Once we got home and were getting ready for the boys' naps, Drew had a meltdown. I think he was really tired, and he was refusing to go potty. He threw such a tantrum that he ended up not getting to read books before his nap, which made him (and me) very sad. So as I was about to leave his room, I asked if I could have a kiss. He was still a little weepy, but not bawling anymore, but he said, "But Mom, there be germs." I said, "There are germs where? On your mouth?" Drew said, "Yeah, from your mouth to my mouth." Getting the idea, I said, "Oh, so I can't kiss you because you don't want me to get my germs on your mouth?" Drew said, "Right." Even a two year-old knows how to hold a grudge, I guess.

Friday, September 17, 2010

In The Card Aisle

Drew and I were in the card section at Target today, trying to find a couple of birthday cards. Drew pointed at the card below and said so seriously, "That have germs."

I could not help but laugh. Then he started asking me, "What is that?" I told him it was a golf ball. "Why it there? What it doing?" I laughed as I told him I didn't know. He didn't appreciate the laughing, but I couldn't help it. He would point out other cards to me (like the one with a toilet on a motorized scooter), but he kept coming back to the above card. Finally, the last question before we left that aisle was, "That Dad?" He gets the dad-golf connection, that's for sure!

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Things I Love

In no particular order:

-Zach's new room, which Mike worked very hard on while the boys and I were in Colorado a month or so ago. Zach was especially surprised by his Star Wars sheets, which are his favorite part of the room.

-How Maggie finds the craziest places to lay down. In this first picture, I was reorganizing closets after we moved Zach into his new room. Because my sisters and I have all had boys, we have shared baby clothes a lot over the past 5 years, and it seems I am always getting some random box of clothes back from somebody, which makes organization a little tough. On this particular day, I was trying to get everything sorted just right so I could put the 3T clothes in Drew's closet (the next size he'll wear), and the infant through 18 month clothes in the baby's closet. As you can see, the room was a total mess, and Maggie just walked in and made herself comfortable, right on top of a pile of clothes.

In this next picture you can see that Maggie is snuggled into a tight corner. She tries to get back into this corner multiple times a night, and depending on how many pillows are stuffed back there (versus on the couch, where they belong), many nights she is somewhat successful. It seems it can't be very comfortable, though, because she often doesn't last long back there before she comes out. It's always funny to hear her trying to maneuver her way out, too. Occasionally she knocks over the stuff on the little table above her.

-Family movie nights. On this night Mike was out of town, and the boys and I decided to watch Finding Nemo and have a frozen pizza for dinner. Drew picked the movie and kept asking before hand, "Can we find Memo?"

-When the boys play nicely together and have so much fun with each other. It is amazing how much better at pretending they are than I am, and it's so fun to listen to them pretend together. It's no wonder Drew has such a great imagination with a big brother like Zach to help him out. Here they are pretending they are bad guys with shields and swords.

Here they are catching fish and playing with the water table, where they kept themselves entertained with no help from me for over an hour. I was able to get some things done, visit with my friend Molly, and just sit back and watch them and smile.

-The funny things Drew says. Today I told him my throat hurt, and he said, "I not have one of those." I said, "You don't have a sore throat?" He said, "No, I not have a throat. I have burps." Okaaaay. This afternoon Maggie licked him, which is something that makes him mad about 99% of the time, and he said, "Pete's sake, Maggie!" And then tonight while we were reading before bed I sneezed, and Drew said, "Maybe you need some coffee." I don't drink coffee, so I don't know where that idea came from, either.

-The lantana in my garden. Lantana is one of my favorite plants because I love the clusters of flowers. I got all my lantana for half price in about mid-July, and I thought for a while they were never going to do anything, but lately, they are just gorgeous! I wish they were perennials!

-Family golf outings.

-The fact that Foudy is always willing and happy to snuggle with Zach (obviously not a great picture of Zach).

-Drew wearing big boy underwear successfully for about 2 weeks now. A year ago I thought he'd be easy to potty train and would do it early, and then a few months ago I thought it might be a while still because he wasn't interested in trying to potty on the potty. Then, basically exactly at his half-birthday (just like Zach when he turned 2 and a half), it was like something clicked and he was ready. He had 2 accidents the 3rd day of wearing underwear and has been accident-free ever since! And he just looks so darn cute in those undies!

-How excited the dogs get when the boys get up in the morning. Foudy walks around barking her happy bark/howl, and often picks up a dog bone or ball. Maggie picks up anything she can find (which is what she does anytime she gets excited by someone's entrance to our house). Maggie is 10 years-old going on 2 years-old. She is still a puppy at heart in many ways, and I have gotten very good at detecting when she has something in her mouth, like a marble, a sock, or any random thing. This morning she showed how happy she was to see the boys by picking up one of the boys' cars. Thankfully most of the time I catch her before she does too much damage, but not always.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Labor Day Weekend

We started Labor Day weekend by doing some prep work on Friday afternoon/evening. The boys did some painting so we would have some really awesome wrapping paper for the birthday presents we needed to wrap for Anders.

Zach also helped me mix up the cake that I made for Anders' party, and after the boys went to bed I made the frosting and decorated it. Anders loves bikes and his favorite color is red, so this was what I came up with.

I found that it is very difficult to get red frosting, though; it generally looks dark pink. Eventually I got it dark enough (a whole little bottle of Wilton red icing color, a teeny smidge of black, and a little yellow to make it less pink looking) to be acceptable, so I went with it. Somehow my hands ended up looking like this, though.

We got up early Saturday morning and headed to Mike's grandpa's house, where I dropped the boys and Mike off and borrowed Mike's parents' car so I could head to Iowa City for the Hawkeye game. This was the first time I've ever been to a Hawkeye game without Mike also being there. I walked over with my sister Sandy and her 2 sisters-in-law Carrie and Betsy. We had absolutely gorgeous weather and the Hawkeyes won, so that made for a great start to the day.

After the game Sandy and I hit up Panera for a snack and hung out a bit before heading over to City Park to prepare for Anders' birthday party. Mike and the boys drove in from Pa's house to join in the celebration. We got lots of pictures from the party.

Zach and Will on the teeter-totter.

Zach, Anders, and Drew hamming it up for the camera. I really love this picture. Just before this picture was taken, Zach told Drew that Anders was two. Drew ran over to ask me if Anders was two like him, and I said, "Yes, Anders is two today- today is his birthday!" Drew said, "Oh! Happy birdie, Anders!"

Zach and Anders checked out the cornhole game.

Anders and Drew were all about giving each other hugs, but every time they did, they would fall down. Then Anders would start saying, "Owie, owie..." so I had to tell them to hug without tackling. This was the first time in about the last 15 months that Drew doesn't freak out about Anders coming near him, so I considered it quite successful. I tried to get a picture of them hugging but was always a second too late.

Drew even shared the fire engine with Anders, and I saw him share it with Anders' cousin Clara, too. Overall, I was pretty impressed by Drew's happy mood and his ability to get along with others at the birthday party. It's not that he's not a likable kid, but if he's not really, really comfortable with someone, he's not necessarily that easy to be around.

Mike and Drew got to ride together on the train.

Here was the whole crew on the train.

Zach was totally into Anders. I think after being up at Sandy and Will's place earlier in the summer, when Anders was totally into Zach and Cam, Zach found that he really likes the adoration of a toddler. He doesn't realize that Drew adores him, too, because he mostly notices that Drew argues with him and doesn't do everything he says, whereas Anders happily follows Zach around, never getting mad at him or ruffling his feathers in the slightest. So Zach wanted to do everything with Anders at the party.

After the train, some of the party-goers rode the carousel.

Then the smallest party-goers got to ride in the airplanes. This time Drew and Anders rode together, I think because they both wanted to ride in the red plane.

Then it was time for cake. This picture cracks me up because I have no idea what was being said to Anders, but I love how Zach and Will (especially Will) are looking at him, and I love Anders' expression. Maybe this was during the singing of Happy Birthday To You.

Anders seemed to enjoy both of his cakes.

There was some present opening, although at that point I think Anders was getting tired and was too distracted by all sorts of things, so he wasn't really into opening presents. We needed to head out, so we packed up our things and said goodbye to the party people and made the 2 hour drive home. We got home around 9:30 and we were all exhausted. It was a great day, though.

On Sunday we lounged around until Sandy, Will, and Anders got to our house around lunchtime. The afternoon was spent playing before we headed out to dinner at Macaroni Grill. The waitress was very thoughtful and brought the kids' food out early so they could get started on it. This was a nice gesture, except that the rest of our food took forever to prepare, and so all 3 boys were done eating by the time the adults' food even go to the table, and we had to try to keep the boys entertained while also trying to enjoy our food. It was a little stressful, but really, the kids did pretty well, so it was ok.

We then headed out to the club for the end of summer party they were having. This was originally supposed to be a 4th of July party, but we had such bad weather then that they had to cancel it twice and finally settled on doing it Labor Day weekend. It was a lot of fun. The boys got to ride all sorts of rides, get balloon swords, get body art, etc., all for free.

Drew was especially funny on these swings. Mike and I could see him making all sorts of hilarious faces as he swung past us, and afterward we found out he was reenacting a scene from the movie Cars, where Mack is falling asleep and is trying to keep himself awake. It was pretty comical.

Anders really loved this train, so he got to ride on it once by himself and then once with Zach. Every time he had to get off he'd say, "My choo-choo! My choo-choo!"

Then there was the giant inflatable slide. Mike went down it with Drew the first time because Drew couldn't climb up the ladder very well. Drew got down and said to me, "Mom, that slide not berry good for me because it too steep." Long pause. "I want to go again!" The second time Zach got a little over eager and slid down before it was his turn and about landed on Drew. At least it was his own brother and not somebody else's kid, I guess.

The club said they'd be doing fireworks at sunset, which was much more appealing to me with an early September sunset than a 4th of July sunset. That's something that I find annoying about the 4th of July- the fireworks come so late, I don't feel like I can keep the boys up that late and still have it be fun for anyone. But, we figured with sunset being right around 8:00 now, we could keep the boys up a little longer and all watch the fireworks and it'd be fine. Well, the sun did set right around 8:00, and then there was some awesome lightning right above us. We waited and waited and waited, and finally, at like 9:00, the fireworks started. It felt like a long wait, but the boys did a great job waiting for them to start. We weren't sure how Anders and Drew would feel about the loud boom of each explosion, but they did great.

Drew kept saying, "I like that kind!" and "Fireworks not scary; they just fun!"

We bolted out of there right when the finale ended, and could not believe how quickly we were able to get all the kids to the car and out of the parking lot. The boys were all in bed by 9:45 and the adults not long after that.

On Sunday morning we got up and walked to a nearby cafe for breakfast and then played around outside while Sandy and Will packed up their car. They left around 11:30 or so. Zach said, "It feels lonely without Anders here."

So it was a great weekend, and we really enjoyed spending so much time with Sandy, Will, and Anders. Even now, any time Drew hears the word "two," he says things like, "It two just like Anders and me two!" I just love giving the cousins a chance to be together and to play together. Anders and Drew both did great all weekend with pottying on the potty and not having accidents, so that was a bonus, too!

It's really late now and I have to get to bed, so I probably won't even spell check this. Sandy, you can point out my errors later. :-)