Sunday, March 30, 2008

home


Greetings from the land of Non-stop Nursing and Very Little Sleep! I plan to post a more detailed birthing story sometime this week, but I wanted to get some more photos up for now. We are home and doing well. So far, this experience is so different than the first time around. Of course it's challenging and demanding, but it's also been really enjoyable. I've really loved getting to know my new son these past few days. And it's so surreal to be a family of four. At one point today David was sleeping next to me, and I heard crying from upstairs in Katy's room. For a second I felt disoriented, like, wait, how can I be hearing crying when the kid is fine right in front of me? And then I realized, oh yeah, now there are TWO of them.



Not that I am taking care of both of these kids yet. I have had a tremendous amount of help so far and it is incredible. I could not do it without all the family that has been around for the past few days. And Brian, of course, is such a great dad. I am really lucky to have him.




Physically I am getting better. I had forgotten how completely terrible you feel for the first few days (weeks?) after the birth. Ugh. Right now we're in the really painful stage of breastfeeding, which is tough. But at least this kiddo wants to eat and knows how to do it, it's just a matter of getting over the painful hump.





Our first night at home was pretty rough. We could not get David to go to sleep in his bassinet, no matter what we tried. We even tried letting him sleep in the bed with us, but that wasn't going well either. He's definitely a snuggler, likes to be held and sleeps really well when he is. But sooo....how do we get any sleep? Finally at 4:00 this morning Brian brought him downstairs and slept with him on his chest on the couch. I was completely spent at that point and so thankful for the break. So I don't know... here's praying for a better night tonight.




Katy has been doing better than I expected. She seems to love "Baby Damin" and tries to be gentle with him. There are moments when she wants Mommy and gets upset that I can't give her my undivided attention, but we've been able to distract her. Of course, there have been lots of people around to give her attention up to this point. In a couple of weeks when it's just us, it will be a different story, I'm sure...



I'll post more details as I am able. Thanks again for all the support...

Friday, March 28, 2008

Presenting...

David Richard
3/27/08, 3:11pm
9 lbs. 4 oz.
21 inches


Just a quick picture from the hospital, even though I'm SURE
you've been satisfied with the plain old text we sent
yesterday. We are doing well and will be home tomorrow. More
details on the little man's arrival to come... but for now
I'll just say that he has surprised me on several accounts.
Over NINE pounds? (The doc had estimated 8 even) All that
DARK HAIR? (Brian and I were both blond baldies) He's a good
nurser? (Katy had SUCH hard time)
So already I can see that this experience will be totally
different, and I'm really excited to get started. Love you
all, thanks for all the congrats and prayers.

Thursday, March 27, 2008

David Richard born 3-27-08, 3:11pm

David Richard born 3-27-08, 3:11pm 9lbs 3.7oz

We are at 8cm and

We are at 8cm and position 0. Progress is a good thing.

Em on Pitocin hoping things

Em on Pitocin hoping things will move along quicker.

Em is resting with epidoral

Em is resting with epidoral now 7cm. Every thing is looking good.

We have been admitted to

We have been admitted to the hospital. Em's 5cm.

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Almost 3! Almost 3!!!

I just returned from my (last!) doctor's appointment and I am excited to report that I am almost 3cm dilated!! I know that especially with a 2nd baby, that doesn't necessarily mean that I will be delivering in the next couple of days, BUT I am relieved, because last time it took over 2 days of laboring to reach 3cm. So it's just nice to know that we are on our way... and that maybe we'll avoid some of the early labor drama that I experienced with Katy.

They also scheduled me for an induction next Monday, March 31st, in the wee hours of the morning, if I don't go on my own before then. At this point I'm really hoping that I will, just because I'd like to avoid induction, but I'm glad to have an end point in mind for sure.

Tomorrow is my due date. Maybe this baby just likes to be very prompt??

Sunday, March 23, 2008

Happy Easter!!


Although I would've liked to have had a baby this weekend, instead we had a very nice time as a family of 3 celebrating Easter. And it was good to be able to spend this time with Katy, because I keep feeling guilty for the decrease in attention that she will receive from me sometime soon...

On Saturday, our local library had a Duckling Day event: it starts with an Easter egg hunt, continues with a duckling parade (all the kids are supposed to dress like ducks), and then ends with crafts, games, and puppet shows inside the library. We missed the egg hunt due to difficulty getting our car started, but made it to the rest. It was cold, but Katy had fun playing with her friend Brooklyn and seeing a few other kids she knows. It was neat for me, because I realized that I have gotten involved in enough "mommy" activities in this area that I actually know some people when we go to an event like this. This was nice, because so often I feel like we are missing the community aspect of living in a family oriented neighborhood.




That night we went to church. I know, it seems weird to go to Easter service on Saturday night, but as our pastor pointed out, it was sunrise in Jerusalem. We've been going to Saturday service for a while now as our church has gotten quite crowded on Sundays, and all of our friends on Saturdays as well. It actually fits our schedule well, and then we have the whole day on Sunday to spend time together as a family.

To be honest, really in my heart of hearts, I wasn't planning on being around for Easter. I just figured that it was only a few days before my due date, so surely I'd have had the baby or be in labor. So I didn't plan to have a dress for Katy. So Saturday afternoon, I pulled together the pieces: dress my mom found on clearance after Easter last year, white shoes from the hand-me-down bag from my neices, borrowed tights from Brooklyn, and recycled sweater from last Easter (that's the advantage of having a little peanut for a daughter - it still fits), and VOILA! Easter cuteness... The service was awesome - a real celebration that was truly enjoyable.


This morning, we gave Katy her basket. Brian thinks we got her too many things, but I just kept picking up little things that I saw here and there over the last few weeks. It was so fun! I didn't realize until I put it all together how much Dora and Sesame Street there was... but Katy loved it all, they are so easily excited at this age...


With the day ahead of us, we decided to go to the zoo. I've been looking forward to going back this spring, because Katy is really old enough to understand so much more about the animals. We thought it would be pretty cold (high of 40 degrees), but we ended up taking off our coats and hats after a while and were quite comfortable. Katy loved the aquarium the most, and we got to see the diver do the hand-feeding of the fish, which was really cool. This was the first time, however, that she was afraid of some things. They had a snake that you could touch, and she was terrified! Then she practically RAN through the rest of the reptile house saying, "I scared! I scared, Daddy!" But overall it was a really nice trip, including a ride of the "horsie" that she hasn't stopped talking about since we went in November.


Everytime we call someone these days, they answer with an expectation in their voice, hoping that we have some news to report... which I quickly tell them that I don't. So I hope this post isn't disappointing because it's not the announcement of our new baby boy. But hopefully soon!!!

Friday, March 21, 2008

America's Youngest Idol


I don't know if we're ready for reality TV just yet, but Katy has become quite the singer. It all started with Twinkle Twinkle, when I started to recognize some of her ramblings as an imitation of that song. Now, it seems like every few days I notice that she's singing a new song that I've never heard her sing before. She only does it when she's playing on her own or flipping through books, singing to herself. If you aren't intuned to her musical style, you might not recognize the song: she only pronounces about every 4th word, and the tune is barely recognizable, but if you know what you're listening for, it's there.


With Aunt Mel's help, we got all dressed for the part today. Aunt Mel has been staying with us this week while she's on spring break (which has also been a nice comfort for Baby Watch), and today she helped me distract Katy so I could make my first attempt at pigtails. It's not what I pictured in my head, but I couldn't stop laughing at how funny she looked. At least not for the 45 minutes that she kept them in.


Songs Katy knows at this point:


Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star


The ABC song


The Clean Up song


Puff the Magic Dragon (yes, Mom, it's true. Give yourself a hand.)


Beautiful Katy (a song my Granny has sung to me since I was a little girl)


Old MacDonald


C is for Cookie (this is my personal favorite)

I've tried to capture her "performance" on video, but as soon as she sees the camera, it's over. So I guess maybe we're not ready for Randy, Simon, and Paula.

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

39 weeks - last belly shot

I had high hopes for my doctor's appointment today. I've been feeling pretty uncomfortable the past few days: crampy back pain, more pressure (as if the baby has dropped), and more contractions. So I thought maybe she'd have some news for me. But no. I'm the same 1.5 cm. Next week my doctor is on vacation, so I have an appointment with a different doc in the practice next Tuesday, the day before my due date. She said that she left him a note to schedule me for an induction on Monday, March 31st (her first day back from vacation) if I have not had the baby by then. The good news is that I am having this baby in the next 2 weeks one way or another. The bad news is that the thought of 2 more weeks in this body is...uncomfortable. But of course, the baby's doing well and that's what's important. So it's more of the waiting game.


I've got one last belly shot for you. The reason I say it's the last one is because this is the last week that I took one when I was pregnant with Katy, and I like to have a comparison shot. Plus, I'm not sure that I want to post anymore pictures if I get any bigger than this. Ugh.



39 weeks with Katy...oblivious smile


39 weeks with New Baby...nervous smile



Finally, the really good news is that we finally got the hardware to assemble the crib. So New Baby now has an official place to sleep. Maybe that will coax him to come out (though I don't think newborns are generally big fans of cribs, especially not cribs in a different room than Mommy and Daddy).


Friday, March 14, 2008

Getting Nervous

Katy having lunch with her friend Emmaline



Emmaline came to visit with her mom Jen and her Mimi. We had a good time having lunch and shopping...

(Note: I started this post on Friday and didn't finish it until Tuesday. It's long, and mostly for my own historical record. But if you're interested in this kind of thing...feel free to take a few minutes to read it)


As my due date approaches and things are gradually checked off of my to-do list, I'm getting more and more nervous about the upcoming events. You know, labor, delivery, newborn, nursing, no sleep, toddler adjusting to new baby, etc. One thing that I did shortly before Katy was born was get a pedicure. It was the BEST, so I decided to do it again. I haven't been able to comfortably reach my toes in months, and I'll be spending a lot of time with bare feet or sandals sometime soon. For the past few days, if I feel a contraction or something that feels like it could be a sign of labor, I've been thinking, "But I haven't had my pedicure yet!" Well, now I can relax, because my toes look like this:






But as I think about the impending arrival, of course I'm thinking back to my experience of becoming Katy's mom. I know that everyone handles having their first baby differently, but I had a hard time adjusting to it. I know that many of you know the story of those first few months, but I thought I'd share it here while I am thinking about it, since I know how these things can become fuzzy the more time passes.



With Katy, I was due on a Thursday. That Tuesday morning, I woke up having contractions, harder ones than the Braxton-Hicks I had been having for weeks beforehand. We started recording the time between them, and they were between 10 and 20 minutes apart. I got up and took a shower, happily thinking that I would be heading to the hospital at some point that day, and I was relieved that I had finally started the labor process. But as the day wore on, there was nothing consistent about the pattern of these contractions. I began calling them small, medium, and large. The small ones were just slightly uncomfortable, the large ones required practiced breathing patterns, but they were completely random, and they weren't getting closer together. The pattern would be 18 minutes, 12, 20, 16, 16, 10, 20, etc. That night I went to bed frustrated, and didn't sleep more than 10 minutes at a time the whole night, as I dozed between contractions, half paying attention to the timing, and half wishing they would stop so I could sleep.



The next day, Wednesday, I went into the OB clinic to see what was going on. They monitored my contractions and checked my dilation. My cervix wasn't dilating past 1.5 (where it had been since 36 weeks), and my contractions weren't getting consistently harder or closer together. They informed me that this was called "prodromal labor." It means labor that doesn't progress, but typically means that "true labor" would begin soon. They told me to keep tracking my contractions, and if they got to be less than 10 minutes apart in the night, I could go into the hospital. Otherwise, come back in tomorrow.



So that night was a really rough night. At this point I had been awake for nearly 48 hours and I had still not gone more than 20 minutes without a contraction during that entire time. I was hurting, I was exhausted, and I was frustrated. So in the wee hours of that Thursday morning, as my contractions briefly stayed below 10 minutes apart, we decided to go to the hospital out of desperation. This was another disappointment. First we got yelled at for not calling our doctor before coming in, even though that wasn't how we had interpreted what they told us at the office that day. Then she monitored me in triage, checked my cervix, and told me in an annoyed manner than I needed to go home because I wasn't close enough. She gave me a sleeping pill to help me get some rest. I went home and took the pill, got 3 hours of sleep, and then woke up Thursday morning to more of the same. This was my due date.



On Thursday, I went to my OB appointment, still 1.5 cm, still contractions not close enough together. She "stripped my membranes" and said to call her if I hadn't had the baby by Friday and they would schedule an induction for MONDAY. That would've been nearly a week of labor - can you imagine? But fortunately I lost my mucus plug before I even left the office, and I was hopeful that things would start to progress, which they finally did.



That evening my contractions were very slowly headed toward 7-9 minutes apart, and I was having more "large" ones than small. We were watching the series finale of Will and Grace, and as that hilarious sitcom came to a close, we called the doctor and headed to the hospital. When we got there, we were ecstatic to hear that I was finally 3 cm. However, in order to make sure that I was truly in labor now, I would need to walk the halls for an hour to see if I dilated further before they would admit me. That was the worst hour. One of the nurses told Brian to make me walk quickly to encourage progress, so he put his hand on my back and pushed me around the halls as fast as I would tolerate. My sister was with us, too. I was at my wit's end and all I wanted was for them to admit me. At the end of that hour, I was 4 cm and alas, officially in labor.



Despite previously thinking that I might be able to do this whole labor and delivery thing without an epidural, I hadn't anticipated the 3 days of laboring at home (and without sleep). I was completely spent, and requested relief almost immediately after I was admitted. I wanted to marry the nurse anesthetist, it was such a relief. I fell asleep for a couple of hours and woke up at 7cm.



Then I stalled out. I didn't make any more progress for a while, and my water still hadn't broken. This part is a blur, but at some point they broke my water and started pitocin, though I'm not sure in which order. Eventually (after a few hours? I don't remember), I started to feel the need to push, and sure enough, I was 10 cm and ready to go. Strangely enough, even at this point my contractions were still 4-5 minutes apart.



After the first couple of pushes, the nurse called my doctor and told her it would be awhile. But apparently I learned quickly because a few minutes later she called her again and said she'd better hurry. I pushed for about 30-40 minutes and was crowning, so they told me to stop and wait for the doc. I'm sure I wouldn't have been able to stop if it hadn't been for the epi, but I was able to. They had a resident and a student nurse there just in case she didn't make it in time. But she walked in, scrubbed up, and less than 5 minutes later Katy was born. After the whole process started on Tuesday morning, she finally arrived shortly before noon on that Friday.



Then, of course, the whole experience of being a new mom completely blindsided me. The first big challenge was nursing. I had no idea that something that should be so natural would be so hard and so painful. Katy didn't latch on at all for the first 24 hours, and then after several hours with a lactation consultant, would finally only do so with the use of a nipple shield. That piece of plastic would become our lifeline as well as the bain of my existence for the next 5 weeks. Finally, after alot of struggle, she learned to nurse without it at 5 weeks old. We had a brief readjustment period, and then the colick kicked in.



I know there's a lot of debate about colick and it's definition, what causes it, etc. But I read several definitions that were based on the amount of inconsolable crying that a baby does, and Katy definitely fit into that picture. Whatever you call it, she was just miserable in her skin until she was about 6 months old. For the first 4 months of her life, she cried every evening from about 5pm until midnight, give or take, and there was nothing we could do about it. I had a laundry list of things that would stop her from crying, but they would only give about 5-10 minutes of relief. I remember that I myself cried everyday for the first several months, mostly because I thought that my child was going to be miserable for the rest of her life. Of course, that isn't true, and I wish I could've seen the very happy child that she is today, because it would've helped me get through those months.



It seemed that as Katy got more mobile, and after she was weaned at 10 months, she became a completely different kid. She is now, of course, SO happy. I think that if I have another fussy baby it will at least be more tolerable because I know that it doesn't last forever, and that it doesn't necessarily predict a child's temperament.



So ANYWAY, my point in sharing all of that (sorry, I went into a lot more detail than I originally intended) was not to whine and complain. New motherhood is a huge adjustment for everyone, and I love to talk to new moms and compare stories and see how things are going. I think my thought is just that when I remember that whole time, it was extremely overwhelming and stressful. It took me a long time to adjust to being a mom, to love being a mom. So I'm just hoping that this new experience with the new baby goes maybe just a leeetle more smoothly, perhaps if only because I am expecting it to be overwhelming? Because if it's like the last time, it's going to be a rough six months coming up.

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

More of the same

Katy and her friend Ella, next door (as evidenced by our house in the background - their house is in the background of so many of our pictures...)


The word from the doc this week is the same: 1.5 cm dilated, 50% effaced, but the cervix was "further forward." I'm not sure what that means, but she said it was good. She shrugged and said, "I'm not expecting anything this week. But we'll see." So we're still chugging along.

There's one reason I'm really thankful for this: I've come down with a cold and have essentially lost my voice. It's not a terrible cold, but it's keeping me up at night more (as if I wasn't already waking up enough!) and is just annoying. I think it would be nice to get past this little ailment before the delivery, but of course it's not a huge deal. Last week I was feeling desperate to have this kid, but this week I feel like I could wait a while. So we'll see...

And now... a funny Katy story:

At some point during the day, I usually let Katy pick out and watch a video. I think if you were to ask her, she would call this the highlight of her day. She will frequently go over to the cabinet where the DVD's are, pat the glass, put on her cutest face, and ask, "Watcha bideo? Watcha bideo?" If you answer in the positive: giggling, laughing, and dancing follow.

So today she came up and asked me for a video right before naptime. I was on the phone, and in a distracted manner, I said, "in a minute." But when I got off the phone, instead of putting in a video, I informed her that it was naptime. Not good news. Tears, and I mean real tears of sadness, not tantrum tears, ran down her face. As I put her in the crib she was crying, "Bideo! Bideo!" So as I walked out of the room, I promised, "After nap, honey, you can watch a video."

Fast forward an hour or so, and I heard the familiar Mommy-calling from her bedroom after the blissful silence of her sleep. As I walked down the hall to her room, I wondered if she would remember that I had promised a video. So I cracked open the door to barely peek into the room, and she stood up with a huge hopeful grin on her face, "BIDEO?!?" Not even a greeting for Mommy, it was as if she'd been dreaming about that video the entire nap. With a memory like that, I think I'm in trouble... and I better watch what I say.

Monday, March 10, 2008

Baby news! (not mine)

For those of you who have been following my friend Kelsey's story of bedrest and pregnancy drama - she had her little boy last night! He's over 8 weeks early, I believe, but so far it sounds like he's doing really well. How cool that we'll both have baby boys this month...

Saturday, March 08, 2008

Blizzard 08


3 posts in 3 days - it's like NaBloPoMo again!


The past 36 hours have brought record breaking snow to our area, and everything is closed and cancelled. Even though I'm completely ready for winter to be over, it's kind of nice that this one fell on a weekend when we didn't have many plans, so it was a good excuse to spend some time at home as a family.




Brian took Katy out this morning and found a group of kids playing on the next street over. They had made a really impressive tunnel and were doing some serious city sledding. He said they had such a blast - I wish I could've gone with them, but it's nice that Katy got some Daddy-time, too.





video

Friday, March 07, 2008

per grandparental request...

...photos of the namesake of this blog:

We've gotten some snow, and we're supposed to get a bunch more. The forecast actually says "Blizzard." Are you kidding me? When Brian got home from work, he went out to shovel and took Katy with him (for which I am thankful. She loves to play in the snow, but I cannot zip my coat or fasten my boots at this point, and I feel so badly that she's stuck inside with such a swollen mom). She came back inside crying because she didn't want to come in, even though her cheeks were as red as they come.

Watching a video while cuddling with baby. Lately she's been obsessed with her babies. We even took one of them to storytime this week (big mistake on my part, as baby caused a ruckus among the other toddlers). I'm hopeful that this means she'll at least be somewhat loving to New Baby. Until, of course, she realizes how much of mom's attention he demands. Then the honeymoon, I assume, will be over.

Thursday, March 06, 2008

Progress

The report from the doc this week is "progress." As of Tuesday, I was 1.5 centimeters, 50% effaced, and the head was "further down than last week." So basically, she said she still wouldn't expect something in the next week or so, but we're making progress, and that's a good thing. One interesting thing that she said was that with 2nd babies they want us to call when the contractions are about 7-10 minutes apart, rather than 5 with the first, because things tend to move more quickly the 2nd time. Hopefully the hospital will honor that, too, since last time my contractions never got any closer than 5 minutes apart, and I was fully dialated and pushing with these 5 minute breaks in between. No textbook labor here, not that there is such a thing.

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I mentioned before that we are going to a different hospital this time because we are now on Brian's insurance as opposed to mine. We took the tour this week so we could figure out where to park and sign in, etc., and we were surprised to learn one annoying fact: no cell phones are allowed in the rooms, either labor and delivery or post-partum. They suggest bringing a calling card. Huh? At my previous hospital, we were allowed to use cell phones everywhere, and that's how we were in contact with everyone. Since we don't have a land line at all, I don't know anyone's phone numbers and I wouldn't even know where to buy a calling card. Maybe it's just me, but this seems a little...ancient. Those of you who have had babies recently, did you have this restriction?

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In case you noticed our "test" posting the other night, Brian learned a new trick that will hopefully come in handy when New Baby makes his arrival. Thanks to our friend Brett, Brian can now send a text from his cell phone that will post directly to this blog. That means that he will be able to send up-to-the-minute updates when it comes time for the arrival, so everyone can check here to see when we become parents of 2. Of course, now that we know the hospital policy, he'll have to go out to the waiting room to do it, so maybe it won't be as frequent as it would've been before.

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We're supposed to get another snow storm tomorrow. I don't think I could say it any better than Erin.

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Brian and I had a date night tonight, and just in the nick of time. I've been feeling all week as if I am this close to losing it. Just completely at my wits end, emotional, tired, uncomfortable, nervous...you name it, all those things you experience weeks before a new baby. But it's amazing what a night out can do for you. I still feel all of those things, but on a smaller, more manageable scale. Thanks to our friends Kate and Dave for their creative and generous shower gift that gave us a much needed break.

Monday, March 03, 2008

It all comes back to Ohio

Most of you probably know that I love Ohio. I grew up here, of course, and have a pretty fond memory of my childhood. When I went away to college, I felt the need to sow my oats and experience life. I went to school in upstate New York, and when I finished grad school, I did 2 internships in North Carolina and Virginia, as I toyed with the idea of settling in the south. But ultimately, what that experience did was bring me back to Ohio. Not that I think that Ohio is a better to place to live than any of those other places, but it's just home. I enjoyed my time away (almost 6 years altogether), but it made me appreciate what I have here in the Buckeye state.


So I often joke that it all comes back to Ohio. There have been many scenarios in my own life in which this is true, but we also seem to be a consistently pivotal state when it comes time for elections. Tomorrow is Ohio's (and Texas') primary election. And once again, the news is talking it up as if everyone will be watching to see if these two states can help determine with more certainty the presidential candidates for November. Now, I'm not heavily into politics, and I don't want to start discussing politics on this blog, but this excitement has me thinking of a couple of stories.


The first takes me back to the last presidential election in 2004. Of course, after the close race of 2000, record turnout was expected, and there was a lot of anticipation related to the election. All day as people in my district went to vote, I was hearing these crazy reports that people were waiting 1-3 hours in line. I really couldn't believe it, but I was not about to be daunted. In addition to the presidential election, I needed to vote for a school levy that my very job depended on. I had told my sister that I would wait and go with her to vote after she got off work, which meant that we arrived at the polls only minutes before it closed at 7pm. They led us to the back door of the school building, in which I could see a long line of people weaving in and out of hallways on the opposite side of the building from the gymnasium where the booths were located. Prepared to stand there for as long as 3 hours, we settled in, with only 1 other person getting in line behind us before they closed the doors. But soon, people who were leaving were telling us stories like, "I started out waaayy up there, and I waited 3 and a half hours." We got to know the people in line around us quite well that evening. Some people had brought cards, and I learned a new game or two. Others were talking on their cell phones, and rumors started in the line: the national news is reporting that the election is SO close, it may all depend on Ohio. Not only that, but our district is the only one with people still in line, so essentially - the election all comes down to US! So ok, none of us really believed this to be true, but it sure was fun to see people that excited about voting. So finally, to a make a long story tolerable, I finally cast my ballot shortly after midnight, over 5 hours after I arrived at the school. People were high-fiving each other as they left the booth, so proud that they weathered the storm to claim their right to vote. So what about you - did you wait in long lines to vote for that election?


The other story goes back to my days in Ithaca, in which my studies granted me the opportunity to meet the First Lady, who is currently running for President. At the time, she was running for Senate in New York, and she stopped by a place where I was working as part of a research project with the elderly, and she had some kind of interest in inter generational collaboration or something. I know some people are not big fans of the Clintons, but no matter how you feel about them, it was pretty cool to meet the First Lady. The security was amazing - I had to get clearance a full week ahead of time to even be able to stand in the same room as her. Then just before she entered, they brought in these REALLY intense looking dogs to come into the room and sniff us all out. (and this was before 9/11) I was so nervous, and I have absolutely no recollection of what I said to her. The whole thing lasted about 10 minutes, and it was such a blur. I just kept thinking, "This woman is married to the President. Wait. This woman is married to the President." But even if I can't remember it, at least I have photographic evidence:




That's me to the left of Hillary. They made us wear those shirts to represent the college - ugh.

So anyway, I can't wait to see the result of tomorrow's election. I even dreamt about it last night. And as much as it would be cool to have a picture of me standing next to someone who eventually became President, I'm not planning to vote for Hillary tomorrow. But that's as far as I'm willing to discuss politics here... if you live in Ohio - remember to go vote tomorrow!

Saturday, March 01, 2008

Great Room Exchange: check

Okay, I've talked it up for long enough, it's time for photos. If you've visited this blog much in the last few months, no doubt you've heard me complain about The Great Room Exchange. Despite recent delays in getting the crib, we went ahead and moved Katy into her new room with her old crib. I wanted to give her a chance to get settled in her new place before another major life adjustment in a few weeks. (Nap was brief today. Let's hope tonight goes better.) So I am breathing a major sigh of relief as I post this summary of the GRE.

Rooms rearranged: 4

Rooms repainted: 1

Pieces of furniture given away: 7

Visitors to our home to collect unwanted furniture: 7

Pieces of furniture accumulated: 5

Closets/storage spaces emptied and reorganized: 10

Large garbage bags taken to Goodwill: 8

Large garbage bags taken to garbage: 15

Trips to Target to purchase items related to this project: countless

Months to complete this project: 3

Days to spare before due date: 25


At last, photos:


Master bedroom before:



Bed awkwardly crammed into corner space




Katy's swing, which is currently homeless



Master bedroom after:



New bed, more space, deal-of-the-century bedding




Corner space rearranged to accommodate Brian's office (see below)


Brian's office before:


This was the space where Brian was allowed to do whatever he wanted


Brian's office, i.e. new guest room after:



Now offering queen size accommodations for our guests, but not much else...


Guest room (and sewing room and storage area before):


You can't tell, but this is actually quite a large room

And this angle doesn't do any better...


Guest room, i.e. new Big Girl Room after:


My mom helped me make these curtains, lined with room darkening shades for nap time




The quilt will be the bedspread when we move to a Big Girl bed, and this dresser was generously donated by Weed.



This table is a temporary solution, and these toys are why we had such a brief nap today.


And just for fun, we added another one...


Guest bathroom before:



"Decorated" mostly with college leftovers


Hard to tell, but the shower curtain is a pretty lavender and silver shimmer



And I can't believe how much of a difference new towels and new pictures can make



And ironically, the only room untouched...

The Nursery (which will be outfitted with a new crib when we get the hardware by next week):

Katy's old crib... now in her new room




New Baby's new room - hope he likes it...



So what do you think? Was it worth all that effort? I'm not doing this again for a few more years, if I can help it.