Friday, January 30, 2015

Tummy Tuesday:: 30 Weeks

Right now, I am sitting here, laughing at myself.  I took what I thought were some reasonable photos....only to find out that there is a STAIN on my shirt. These are clothes I dug out of the "archives", so they all had to be washed before I wore them.  I am really sad to see that my cute little turtle neck from Victoria's Secret has one of those tricky stains that never comes out.  I am also really sad to admit that I am far too lazy to start taking a whole new set of pictures.  Unfortunately, that's not much of an option, as I am a little rounder/larger than I was when I took these photos a couple of weeks ago.

The funny part of all this is I have photo editing software.  Software that I have no idea how to use!  I have never been able to figure it out, but I felt oh so proud of myself for purchasing it on Amazon.  Hahahahaaa!  It's official.  I am OLD!  I remember laughing at my Daddy for buying all these gadgets and technology that he had no idea how to work.  He would have all of us trying to figure it out for him.  Nine times out of ten, he would have thrown away the instructions, thinking that "smart kiddos like us could just figure these things out" and teach it to him.  So funny that I am now in that boat, laughing at myself the same way I laugh at Daddy.  Talk about coming full circle!

Lesson Learned!  From now on, I will upload, preview, and edit on the spot instead of waiting weeks to see the photos I have taken.  Until then, you will have to laugh with me about the stain on my shirt and just have faith that all my clothes are 100% freshly washed and clean, as I am highly allergic to dust.

This week has been a hot mess and I have just been sitting around, laughing at myself all week.  Literally.  Seeing this stain is just icing on a very large cake-- Ha!  I have been emotional, stressed, exhausted, and I have fallen behind on all my plans, hence posting this Tuesday post on a Friday.

Over the weekend, The Hubs and I had an argument.  I was exhausted and needed some help with the housework and he didn't do it when I asked. Classic issue between men and women.  Women say, "Honey do..." and men hear "Do it when you feel like it..."  This week, I have been so tired and I have been having contractions, so when things don't get done, my crazy-preggo mind starts to panic.  Thankfully, I married a man who does really take seriously being able to care for his wife.  We talked about how unprepared we are and how I need the house to stay clean just in case something crazy happens.

I have these irrational thoughts about going into labor and coming home to a wild mess of chores.  And then I dream that my stitches come undone while I am cleaning my apartment with a baby hanging from my tit and my guts spill out.  OK, reading this now makes me laugh at myself because it's so absurd...horrific, but absurd.  Surely in real life, I would just take rest, right?  Seriously, I have problems!  I thought the crazy dreams stopped after the first trimester, but not this time for me.  This entire pregnancy has been about my crazy dreams.  I have been having so many horrible dreams about labor, delivery, and coming home to recover.  I explained these nightmares to The Hubs and we both agreed that I should take a maternity class or two to help with the nightmares.

To say that the maternity class was a bad idea is a huge understatement.  First, I was awake with insomnia until 5:30am and we had to get up at 8am to be ready to leave.  I didn't shower... I just figured if anyone wanted to know why I smelled like taco meat, I would blame it on the hormones.  I barely combed my hair.  If anyone asked, I would say the hormones make my hair particularly unruly and that it's unsafe for pregnant women to put their hands up.  There.  I had a plan for my slightly unkempt appearance.  The Hubs, mind you, was freshly shaved, showered, and in clean clothes.

Of course, I get to the class and I feel like a fool because every preggo there was dressed in cute winter maternity attire with their hair perfectly coiffed and full faces of make up on.  Even the women who you knew were otherwise sloppy humans brought their A-game that morning.  I'm sorry, but three hours of sleep isn't enough for me to bother with my appearance.

The nurse doing the class was awesome.  Then she stopped talking and put in a video.  The video was a little annoying.  It is 2015.  Why oh WHY are training classes still showing films from 1983?  I was BORN in 1983!  The Salt'n'Peppa asymmetrical curly bob hair cuts, the side ponytails, and the matching short suits with horrible prints and bows.  I was so distracted......... and then someone's vagina exploded.  Well, that woke me right up, didn't it?

Not only did I watch FOUR vaginal deliveries, placenta and all, but the man-child behind me had sound effects for each one.  He also made it a point to laugh as loud as he respectfully could at the fact that I was gagging, jumping, shaking, and covering my eyes.  I don't do anything medical, bloody, gruesome, or "too real".  Hell, I can barely pull off my own Band-Aids!  Yes, I have given birth.  Yes, my hubs was there.  Neither of knows what the hell happened.  We had a game plan:  DO NOT FUCKING LOOK DOWN!!!!!!!!!!  No matter what happened.  The nurse could have said I am birthing a great Asian water buffalo and we wouldn't have looked.

Long story short-- We weren't ready!  Thankfully, The Hubs wasn't as rude or childish as the man behind us.  He was clearly perturbed, however.  He lost all color in his skin and he was holding onto the armrests of his seat so tightly, you would have thought some invisible force was trying to suction him from his seat.  This class literally had the opposite effect!  It was supposed to make me feel better.  Instead, it brought flashbacks to the pain and everything I felt as my epidural wore off shortly before delivery.  Seeing The Hubs in that seat reminded me of his sweating profusely and begging me to get an epidural, likely so that he could handle the situation rather than worrying about my pain management.

I should have stayed for the rest of the class, but I was exhausted and stressed out.  I wanted a steak and to get as far away from that damn hospital as possible. So we went to a steakhouse and high tailed it home to sleep.

This week, I also got a mani/pedi.  I needed one so badly.  Several weeks ago, when handling the skin on my feet wasn't such a challenge, I used the PedEgg on my feet.  Unfortunately, I have been allergic to EVERYTHING I could moisturize my skin with, so I didn't put anything on after removing the rough skin.  Basically, my skin dried out and cut down to the core.  I totally can't see my feet anymore, and I no idea what was causing so much pain.  I just wandered about my on my tiptoes all day.  Finally, I figured it out.  After the cuts healed, I went to get a real pedicure and manicure.
The sweet old Asian lady spoke no English, but she got her point across as she made a huge deal about how neglected my hands and feet were.  I'd gotten a few pedicures in my day, but only 3 because I like to handle it myself.  I have never gotten a manicure.  I never will get another one again!  I needed it because I was getting witchy troll fingers with creepy nails growing all over and overgrown cuticles.  Mama Asia went a little hard on my fingers, and I am sure she cut off a piece of my hand at one point.  Rather than giving me a Band-Aid and letting me be, she smashed my fingers in some sort of Aikido death grip and then doused it in this acid rain potion.  I wanted to scream.  I didn't, but I totally peed my pants from the pain.  LOL!  Thankfully no one could tell.... or at least I don't think they knew, but they were all pointing and laughing at me throughout my entire procedure.  I would have laughed as well.  You would have thought that I was undergoing medieval torture during the manicure.  Never. Ever. Again.
For the rest of the week, I slept.  Like most of all day.  Between my allergies and my contractions and being constipated, I am too fatigued to do anything.  I promised my Little Darling I would  stay awake, and that's when it hit me that I never posted anything this week.  Whew!  I am feeling a little like the ultimate failure, but it is what it is.  I don't take myself or life all that seriously.  I clearly have no problems sharing TMI moments, my fears, and my setbacks.

I am not afraid to admit that, I was in the hospital during my prenatal appointment trying to twerk in the bathroom after finding out that I gained another 5 pounds and my uterus is finally measuring on time with my growing baby.  Yes, I twerk in happiness.  Why not?  I am not afraid to admit that I considered booty sex to alleviate my constipation, but then I managed to go on my own, which I totally celebrated by singing "The Hills Are Alive" from The Sound of Music in full voice throughout my entire time in the bathroom.  I am not afraid to admit that I really need maternity clothes at this point, but I only have two months left, so I am walking around my city with my baby guts out.  I am completely unapologetic about it and I laugh at myself along with those who point and chuckle at my poor wardrobe choices.  Life is too short to waste time on keeping up appearances and wallowing in embarrassment.

Have a great weekend!

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Tummy Tueday:: 29 Weeks

Well, it's that time again, TUESDAY!  I think I am starting to look forward to Tuesdays, as I finally have time to sit and blog again.  I like this little escape from my boring life.  This week has been very emotional and a little painful.  My baby keeps growing and I haven't grown much myself.  Today, I am actually 31 weeks, and I am already counting down until the day I can sleep in whatever position I want and until my hips are no longer throbbing!  I can't wait.
Since I have been pregnant, I have learned so many things about myself and my body.  I have never been one who is jealous of other women.  I think jealousy and envy are toxic to ones overall wellbeing.  That being said, I do try to take care of myself and I can be somewhat critical of my health and body at times.  Since, I have been pregnant, I have been paying Extra attention to images of the female body in media and also the things women say in everyday life.

Until recently, people couldn't tell that I was pregnant. I usually wear yoga pants and a giant t-shirt.  I also gained no weight from weeks 22-29.  No worries, the baby continued to grow, which was incredibly uncomfortable.  I have no complaints because my Little Someone's health is paramount.  I just found myself conflicted with emotions.  On the one hand, I was really upset throughout those weeks that people couldn't tell I was pregnant.   I also got super tired of other mothers and pregnant women rolling their eyes at me, saying I was "tiny" and that I "barely look" pregnant. I felt like I didn't earn whatever right of passage into the Maternity Club.  On the other hand, I wanted to laugh in all their faces and remind them that I am still wearing my non-maternity clothes and I won't have much trouble shrinking down to my pre-baby weight after delivery. 

Every now and again, I would be hella constipated and bloated.  On those days, I looked twice my size and everyone was happy and excited for me. Unfortunately, the poop and water weight didn't stick around for the long haul.  Again, I was conflicted.  I was happy I could poop, but even happier that I wasn't getting "fat".  I was also upset that I returned to my status of "barely pregnant".  I am a little disappointed I have come to think of things in either of those ways.  I don't usually compare myself to other women or feel any emotional conflict when it comes to my body image.
I think what upsets me the most about all these thoughts going through my head is that NONE of them are acceptable. I hate this idea that people have permission to scrutinize and criticize women, especially women in vulnerable states such as pregnancy.  I don't understand what it is about the female shape that invites so much negative commentary.  I will admit that I have definitely been affected by this "war on the female shape" since I have been pregnant.

Celebrities and style bloggers constantly state that they "barely gained more than baby weight", that they "never gave up wearing 6-inch stilettos", and that they "never bought maternity clothes, aside from maternity jeans".  Don't get me wrong. I love-LOVE celebrities.  I also respect and understand they have to maintain a certain shape/figure as part of their jobs.  What I don't understand and can't accept the is underlying message beneath the comments they make in regard to their bodies while pregnant.  As representatives of women in society, as voices for women in society, I am confused about why celebrities feel the need to indirectly shame women who gain weight while pregnant.  I also can't figure out why more celebrities, as role models and women of influence, don't stand up to the media when there are negative articles about pregnant celebrities and their weight gain.

Well, here is the TRUTH.  There is no right or wrong when it comes to pregnancy weight.  The ultimate goal is to grow and harbor a Healthy Baby.  That means, eating healthy, balanced meals (if your baby will let you because cravings are the Real Effing Deal) and getting an appropriate, safe amount of exercise.  Your body is going to do what it needs to do in order to accommodate the task at hand.

Personally, I have never felt more feminine than when I am pregnant.  Everything about my body becomes softer and rounder.  At first, it was a bit of a hard pill to swallow, knowing that just before getting pregnant, I lost about 25 pounds and started to firm up.  All of these selfish thoughts are cancelled out when I go to my prenatal check-ups and I am told that my Little Someone is doing well and growing like a lovely little weed inside of my body. 

Ladies, comparing yourself to other women is never the way to happiness. If you are unhappy with your appearance, and you are physically able to do something about it, don't waste time pretending.  Don't waste energy being hateful and jealous of women who have nice curves or women who are thinner than you are.  In the end, it makes you weak and fills you with negative energy and self-doubt.  Rather, take some responsibility for your appearance and do what you can to focus on yourself.  Work to change the things you can and refocus that energy wasted on being envious of others towards learning to accept and love things about yourself that you can't change.

As I've mentioned, being pregnant has taught me so much more about my body and myself that I could imagine.  I really have just learned to accept that I will likely gain 40 pounds by March.  I have accepted that I have gone up two cup sizes in my bra. I have accepted that I can't workout the way I planned because my hips are killing me and too much activity makes it worse.  I have accepted that I have lost most of the muscle tone I worked on.  I have also learned that I can be incredibly happy dressing my new body.  I am impressed that I am able to still get around, despite the hip pains and sciatica.  I am To The Moon excited when my Little Someone moves around, causing me all sorts of discomfort because my body isn't growing as fast as she is.  I am really happy and truly proud of myself.  That's where it starts.  If you can love your strengths, accept your shortcomings, and make a plan to strengthen your weaknesses, no one can take away the confidence that comes from finding peace within and love you have for yourself.

Happy Tuesday!  Hopefully, someone read this today and took a moment to smile at themselves in the mirror, loving Exactly what she sees, just the way she is!

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

WIPs on a Wednesday

Today has been such a laid back day.  I spent the day enjoying the sunshine pouring in through my blinds, sipping hot lemon ginseng tea, and getting my hooky-hook on.  I have so many ideas for projects.  I need to start a sketch/pattern book or something before I forget all the awesome things I want to do.

Do you ever have that problem?  Where your mind is working a thousand times faster than your hands ever could?  I have that issue literally every single day!  There is something about taking a shower or washing the dishes that inspires me... Something about getting clean pushes in all these creative ideas.  I mean, I even get the best ideas for projects that I actually have no clue how to complete.  If only I could sew!  I would have so many gorgeous collections of evening and bridal wear! LOL.

For now, though, I have to really hold back and hone my focus.  As I have mentioned so candidly before, this pregnancy has been a bit unexpected and as a result, we are definitely unprepared financially for the cost of a new one after so many years.  We have NO BABY ITEMS!  I actually can't even think of all the things a new baby needs anymore.  It's been so long.

I do know that we will need lots of blankets...  and that is something I can handle.

Please forgive all the photobombs by the baby bump.  I have really taken to just snapping pictures of WIPs as I am on the go.  Having to stage photos and move things around sometimes is just too much work. LOL. I have to be honest about my laziness!

I have always wanted to try a "Ripple Stitch" blanket, but I could never understand any of the patterns that I found.  Finally, I decided on a color scheme for my Little Someone and I decided to just go for it.  Whatever happened just happened.... and what's the worst that could happen?  Well, I will tell you!  The "worst" that happened is that I can't do math and, as usual, I totally messed up the pattern and figured out my own way to make this blanket work.  All this catastrophe from the most simplest of patterns that I could find.

And now, I am a little less than half way done!  The mistake I made?.....  If you can't tell, neither will I!  Hahahaha!  I got the super easy pattern here.  I wasn't sure about adding a row of pink, but now that it's there, I love it. I am hoping to have this cutie finished by the weekend.  If not, sooner.  Let's hope I can stay focused!

And here is blanket #2.  I have a total of 4 project ideas and, when I ran out of white yearn for the ripple stitches, I started this pretty ombré blanket.  I am in love with the color purple in all shades.  It's just a rich and beautiful color.  I have always wanted to make an ombré patterned blanket, but I never needed anything small enough for me to try out the pattern.  I am happy that I am in need of some baby blankets now!

I decided to try my hand at switching stitches.  This blanket starts with a shell stitch, but I have always wanted a blanket that has popcorn stitches going across it.  I have NO patience to make an entire blanket of popcorn stitches...... or so I thought.  I've actually never completed a blanket that was worked in rows.  I always get bored and give up.  I feel so motivated to make blankets for my Little Someone that I might actually be able to finish a full blanket of popcorn stitches.  Ha!  Funny how things work out that way.

I am excited about this blanket.  I love the off white popcorn section.  I am hella allergic to the yarn that I am using, and I actually have to wear a face mask as I crochet.  It's not really the yarn that causes the allergic reaction, but the dust.  I am extremely allergic to dust and dust mites.  So, as soon as I am finished with the blanket, it will be washed and I will be fine.  Oh the things we do for our children, right?!

And this is the final installment of the projects I have going at the moment for my Little Someone.  These will just be granny squares.  I never thought much about the color gray until I saw something on Instagram.  It had lavender, mint green, and grey.  Suddenly, I knew EXACTLY which colors I wanted for this new baby. I would have gone with a light brown if it were a boy, rather than the lavender and I probably would have used a turquois and orange as accents, rather than the yellows and pinks...... OH NOOOOO!!!!  I am starting to get ideas for little boy blankets!  GAH! **Must Stay Focused**

Being the creative type definitely has its drawbacks.  Hahahahaa. 

I am really glad to report that I am equally excited about each and every last one of these blankets.  For blanket #4, I haven't decided if I want to do a circles in squares pattern, African Flowers (the granny square modification), or if I want to work in rows again and do a full single-colored blanket in the snapdragon stitch.  Decisions, Decisions!  I am not worried about it for the time being.  I've clearly got my hands completely full with these three blankets that I am working simultaneously.

If anyone has any advice or ideas on cute baby blanket patterns, feel free to share!  I am so motivated right now, that I want to take in as much as I can.

Until then, HAPPY HUMP DAY!

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Tummy Tuesday: December Recap

YAY!!! First post of 2015!   I have finally carved out some time to sit and blog.  Finally!

December is always somewhat of a marathon for this family.  We have, all within about three week's time, holiday school functions with our Little Darling, my wedding anniversary to the Hubs, three birthdays (17th, 20th, 22nd) Christmas, New Year's celebrations and my sister's birthday on January 2nd.  So....  yea.  By the end of the month, I am celebrated, partied, and holiday spirited out!  To top it off this year, my Little Darling was incredibly sick for the first week of January.  I feel like I am just now getting caught up with life.... and all that with NO COFFEE!  It's hard out here for a preggo.  LOL.

I never want to lie about things regarding who I am and what I am capable of.  Honesty is definitely my best quality.  This December was particularly hard on us financially.  We have lived slightly below our means for years, so that we always had a cushion and were comfortable.  We were sort of thrown a little surprise when we got the budget to pay for Little Someone's delivery and that was due in December as well.  I was not in the holiday spirit in the slightest.  Right before our eyes, the December budget grew by thousands of dollars and for the first time in years, I was going to have to choose which things we let go for the month.  That's hard for a Mama!  December is crazy busy, but it's also the month that we try to just make every effort to acknowledge, love on, and celebrate our Little Darling.  Her birthday is just 5 days before Christmas and this year, she was in school more than home for the first time.

I definitely felt the strain, as The Hubs and I decided early on that we would do whatever we could to make sure that our Little Darling knew no difference between this December and any other.  Thankfully, I am rather confident in my handmade crafts skills.  And a Happy Handmade Holidays it was for us!  But that meant that one thing I had to let go was blogging.  I didn't have time to get dressed for photos and I didn't have time to take any pictures or write anything either.  I mean, it was the biggest crazy mad dash of insanity ever!  I am so, so, so happy that I am comfortable to putting my family first and prioritizing.

Today, I am officially 30 weeks pregnant...  GAH!  How did that happen?!  Time flies when you are so busy you can't stay tuned to your pregnancy counter, LOL.
28 weeks, approaching Whale Status...
I had a little time two weeks ago to take some belly pictures, but my Little Darling fell sick, so I wasn't able to post.  Again, I am really proud of myself for being able to prioritize.  I wasn't always this way.  A long time ago, I would consider my family to be an impertinence.  I always felt bothered by their needing my time and attention.  There were times when I would ask my Little Darling to play alone so I could work on art projects or blog "in peace".  Now, after waiting years to be blessed with another child, I know much better!

Children grow so fast.  My heart was completely broken when I noticed that my Little Darling isn't playing with toys as much as she used to.  I think of the time she spent in daycare that I didn't get to watch her play because I was working and going to grad school and I "didn't want to be bothered" with her.  I think of all the times I was busy or tired.  I think of the times when I just wasn't in the mood.....  I feel like I somehow missed it, all the many precious moments to see her be sweet and tiny.  Now, she is growing up, reading and writing, doing art projects on her own, and asking for her "alone time" without me.  I guess I taught her well in that regard, but I won't be making the same mistake again.  Having been given a second chance, I will definitely take more time and pay better attention to BOTH of my little girls.

I am so excited about this new year!  It's more than just a new year, a chance to change, improve, or undo mistakes... This is the year that everything changes for our family, and I couldn't be more excited about it!

I am mega also mega THRILLED to finally have the time to start showing off some new projects I have been working on, starting tomorrow.  I made some things in November/December, but I had no time for photos.  They needed to be mailed straight out. I am pumped to show off what I have on the hook tomorrow, so see you then!