Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Feminine Hygiene

Ok, so yes, Bimmer is here. I promise I will update soon... once I have had a few more hours of sleep. In the meantime, here's a funny story for ya...


Stick with me here, as I take you on a monumentally circuitous route to get to how the best high school band ever was formed...
 
In early May, a story broke at my old high school about a 33 year old female teacher supposedly hooking up with a 15 year old male student. Shocker! I know! Apparently it can happen anywhere!
 
That topic led to me and Rowdy having a conversation via text early one morning about how it was probably a good thing there were never any hot male teachers in their early twenties when I was a senior. Because I totally would have hit on them.
 
That reminded us then of the hot California surfer dude of a substitute teacher we had in freshman Spanish class. And that Greek (I think he was Greek???) stud muffin of a long-term English sub from our junior year, whom we affectionally dubbed Dr. D.
 
One of my dear friends had a massive crush on Dr. D. And when I say massive, I really mean it. Like, we somehow found out where he lived and would sometimes drive past his house on the way home from a night out. He lived on a main street, so it wasn't hard. Plus, he liked to live with his blinds open and his lights on inside when it was dark out. One night, he appeared in the window as we were creeping past... and he bent over.
 
WE SAW DR. D'S ASS IN THE WINDOW!!!!
 
Sometime during that winter, we got an overload of snow. As bored teenage girls, a few of us headed out in search of something to keep us occupied on a dreary Friday night. Please don't ask me how this ever came to be our decision, but we found ourselves at Walgreens, buying the largest box of generic brand tampons they had. What did we do with said tampons? We drove around town and threw them in people's yards, so that when the snow melted, they would have tampons in their grass. (To clarify, they were NOT used. That's just nasty!) Several of those launched tampons ended up in Dr. D's front yard. The rest of them? Well, we drove down one particularly long residential street in the next town over, and did our best to land them in truck beds, on top of cars, in open mailboxes, and on people's front porches.
 
Sometime the next fall, after a football game, we were chilling at a local hangout diner, and were discussing my cousin's entrance into a Battle of the Bands competition in town. Four giggly girls decided to start coloring on the placemats to come up with our own fictional band. I'm pretty sure I played bass, because it's always been the sexiest instrument to me. I know Miss was on drums, because she "liked to bang things." We decidedly took it too far when we created a fictional website with band member bios and a few song lyrics too. (I never claimed to not be a giant nerd in high school!) Our second album was going to be entitled "Self-Titled Debut" because I found something ironic and cool about it.
 
And the name of the band, you wonder?
 
TAMPON NECESSITY
 
See... somehow, this story just came full circle.

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Plumber's Crack: Do the Deux

Remember a few months ago when I had a nervous breakdown because Puff refused to double-flush and clogged the toilet late on a Sunday night? Well, perhaps you should re-read that first.
 
Now add two months more of hormonal and emotional imbalance and cue a recent Sunday morning, when I was 39 weeks preggers. In my 20,000 bathroom trips a day, I go through a lot of toilet paper. And I hate to change the roll. For some reason, it's just at a hard angle to reach, especially with this big ol' bump, and I try to leave it out for Puff whenever possible. Yet, like my dad, he always picks on me about not changing it. So, I sucked it up and went to change it after it was empty.
 
Since our toilet is cheap and our plumbing is old, we have a weird thing where the toilet flushes completely twice with each push of the handle. By the time I went to the hallway, got a fresh roll, and came back in, the toilet was still running. I hadn't put the seat down, and in all my pregnant clumbsiness, I managed to drop the plastic thing that holds the toilet paper to the wall... dropped it into the toilet.
 
The flushing toilet.
 
And since I'm so pregnant and awkward, by the time I was able to bend down to stick my hand in the water to grab it, the toilet finished flushing. And it took the plastic piece with it.
 
YOU HAVE GOT TO BE KIDDING ME!!!!!
 
I folded into a pile of tears and self-hatred, since I knew there was no way that would go through the plumbing and us just be able to pretend like it never happened. Puff flushed it with just water, and of course, it went down OK. But the second he tried to flush any paper down, it got clogged. After both of us took showers, we had to call the plumber. Again. They're beginning to like our stupidity.
 
The plumber was great and he told us as soon as he got here that he would have to remove the entire toilet and reach up into it to get the plastic piece out. Except, the first attempt, he couldn't get it. It wasn't in the trap. It was caught in the zig-zaggy part, so it would require a more heavy-duty tool and a lot more effort. At that point, we were informed that if he couldn't get it out, we would be talking about having to buy and install a new toilet. Yeah, that sounded like exactly what I wanted to hear as I was holding back tears and writing on my private blog about how I felt like a waste.
 
Thankfully, he was able to fish it out. And he even spent a lot of extra time reinstalling the toilet and trying to get it level (it had been a little wonky on our old, uneven floors) and recaulked the entire thing. He even replaced one of the pieces on the bottom for us at no charge. And even though some other thing to straighten out the toilet was recommended, he said if we were OK with it not sitting entirely level, the $400 for that would be better spent on our baby. Damn straight!
 
The lesson in all of this? I am not allowed to change the toilet paper roll ever again. I also should probably close the toilet lid immediately after use, so not to tempt fate and have anything else fall in there that doesn't belong. Also, it was good practice for when we have a toddler. Puff said he may have to buy a toilet lock before then, just to keep me from causing any more $300+ plumber visits.
 
Just a reminder that tomorrow will be Bimmer's birthday! So, my apologies for being MIA for a few days. I will be back as quickly as I can with updates on her arrival, plus, I have about 18 pre-written posts that I can pull from to keep you reading! Send lots of good thoughts and prayers tomorrow for an easy labor. Those exist right?

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

About Damn Time

Besides drinking castor oil, I think we have tried every wives tale in the book to get Bimmer to get this show on the road. Well, besides sex too. We haven't tried that. While Puff's love for me is unconditional, it is apparent that he is not unconditionally attracted to me. I can't say that I blame him.


You mean these 39 week cankles that suddenly appeared don't turn you on?


What about my "Pimp Hand?" I can rough you up with this carpal tunnel wrist brace just as well as anything from the S&M section at Hustler!

Alrighty... down to business...

Yesterday afternoon, Puff and I got the OK to schedule an induction for Bimmer... if we wanted. And uh... DUH... I wanted! I'm still just 3cm dilated and 80% effaced, but apparently those conditions are "favorable" enough for an induction to be totally kosher. So, I scheduled it for the earliest they would let me... this Thursday!

If I make it that far, I will be 39 weeks and 5 days, so this baby has definitely baked long enough. The date is extra special too, since it is my grandparent's wedding anniversary. (Awww...) It also gives my parents a great head's up as to when to start making the 8 hour (for them) trek from The Fort to come visit. Sure, Puff's a little bummed she didn't come earlier so we could hit up that cool British car show this Saturday with her, but there's always next year.

Plus, I have a pretty good feeling, that once he holds his daughter, he won't be worrying about cars.

At least not for a good 20 minutes or so.

Monday, May 21, 2012

Trying Times

Friday was a very scary day in our lives.
 
At 4:30am, Puff stumbled into the bedroom after receiving a call from his brother that his dad had been rushed to the hospital. They weren't sure what was wrong.
 
I knew with all my heart that Puff wanted to throw a bag into the car and drive to see his dad in the Great White North. Except, it's more than an 11 hour drive from here. And we weren't sure what was wrong. And I'm 39 weeks pregnant and 3 cm dilated. The thought of going into labor while he was out of town petrified me. The timing couldn't have been worse.
 
As the day progressed, we finally got more information about his state and after lots of tears and concern and frustration, it was determined it was not necessary for Puff to drive up at this time. As of Saturday morning, the FIL was off some of the oxygen and his blood pressure was back up. The meds seemed to be working and he was eating and talking. You could taste the joy in the air at our house. As of Sunday night, he was well enough to have a long conversation on the phone with Puff and seems to be doing 1000 times better! We hope to have him home this week from the hospital.
 
The amount of love and support and prayers that came in from all of my friends and family, as well as Puff's friends, was incredible. We are so blessed to have you in our lives, and so is the FIL. I truly believe that someone was looking out for us and keeping Puff here with me during the last few days of my pregnancy, as well as looking after the FIL to make sure he pulled through quickly. Your continued thoughts and prayers are much requested, so that we can get the FIL back home and we can get Bimmer here safely.
 

 
It really makes you appreciate the time you spend with your family. And it really made me think again about how great it would be to be living in The Fort, so we would be near my family, and 6 1/2 hours closer to the FIL. We lucked out, this time, that we didn't have to make any gut-wrenching decisions. Here's praying we don't have to make any of those any time soon either.

Friday, May 18, 2012

Flash Bulb Friday


Summer 2008 - St. Simons Island, Georgia

Not long after I broke up with The Ex, my good friends Rach and Lisa whisked me away to one of my favorite places in the world... St. Simons Island.
 
It was good for my soul. I can't wait to go back and experience it with Puff and Bimmer. It will have a whole new, more special, meaning once we've done that.

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Visit Cola


I've been a resident of the state of South Carolina for almost 12 years now. The first 6 1/2 were spent in Columbia, where I was a student at USC. (Go Cocks!) In that time, I feel like I have been to a lot of far corners of the state and have posted HERE about a trip to Myrtle Beach and HERE about a trip to Folly Beach. But there is a lot more to SC than the beaches! As my avid readers know, Puff and I go to the mountains quite often... HERE.


I will never forget being on our honeymoon cruise and having a couple from New York stare at us bewildered when we told them that we didn't live near the beach. Their faces almost made me want to laugh. Now, I'm not claiming to be a geography champ (although it is definitely a huge interest of mine) but I would've been pretty sure that anyone who has been to school would realize that the state of South Carolina isn't just a sliver of land that borders only the ocean. But, I digress...


Since I'm hopefully super close to giving birth, I thought I would do a series of entries about the three major cities in SC. Today, we're starting with Columbia.




My top pick of a place to visit? The Horseshoe on USC's campus. With the school being such a backbone of the town, it would be dumb to miss it. The Horseshoe is the epitome of the college experience, in my mind. Old, historic buildings with pavered pathways winding under giant trees cascading over the students. The campus is huge... you don't have to see it all. The revamped Russell House in the center of campus is a perfect stop to get some gear from the bookstore. It would really be a shame to come away from this town without something that read "Cocks" on it!


Other sites to see? Check out the state house grounds, the state museum, the children's museum, and definitely Riverbanks Zoo. These are all conveniently located in or near downtown, and the Hampton Inn in The Vista is a perfect place to stay! Now, for food? Hands down, my favorite place to eat is Pasta Fresca, which is just outside downtown in the Forest Acres area. Their creamy marinara makes me cream myself! Gervais and Vine is a great tapas and wine bar in The Vista, but get there early or you will have to wait! For lunch, Groucho's Deli is a Columbia institution. There are lots of locations around town these days, but the one in Five Points has that "vintage" feel that me and my friends remember fondly from our college days. Oh! And dessert you ask? Nonnah's is a no-brainer! On a weekend evening, you'll have to wait for a table, since the place is small. But I've never been disappointed! They even serve up some bananas foster on occasion! My mouth is literally watering just at the thought!


I would recommend some bars and clubs, but since it's been a loooooooooong time since I lived there, I'm afraid I'm just too old for that. I'm sure some things haven't changed though... Five Points is the area close to campus with the typical college-scene bars, clubs, and restaurants. I went out drinking here ONCE. I distinctly remember cheese fries at the end of the evening. I preferred The Vista area, since the bars were nicer and had an older crowd. (They also didn't card at most places, which made our underage debauchery much easier! Plus, older guys buy you drinks... college guys do not.)


Would I suggest specifically coming to SC for a trip to Cola? Nope. But is it a nice place to stop for a night or a weekend, perhaps en route to the beach, or accompanied by another SC city? Absolutely. You probably just don't want to come in July or August. They don't call it the armpit of the state for nothing!


P.S. Check out a friend's blog, Converted Southerner, as she sometimes posts about places and happenings in the Columbia area!

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Breathing Room


 

I'm not gonna lie... for the past 5 weeks, I had really, really, been hoping I would never get to this entry. I was hoping there would be photos of a squishy baby to post, instead of photos of an increasingly squishy me. I am disappointed this pregnancy has taken so long. If only because I was sorta given false hope by the fact that I was already dilated last week. Not to mention the fact that Bimmer is riding so low in there. I'm pretty sure if I had sex right now, she'd get poked in the head.


Oh yeah... and I was having regular contractions at about 11 minute intervals for several hours on two separate occasions! I was soooo close! In fact, I was having those contractions when I took my 38 week photos. I figured I might as well try to get them in under the wire. Little did I know, I had a bit more time.


I'm tired of my gigantic boobs. I'm tired of my carpal tunnel. I'm tired of my thighs that rub together. I'm tired of not being able to sit with my legs together. I'm tired of not being able to properly groom myself because I have to give an Olympic effort to shave my legs or cut my toenails. I'm tired of my double chin. I'm tired of not being able to sleep, sit, stand, or walk comfortably. I'm tired of peeing every half hour. I'm tired of being afraid to venture too far from the house. I'm tired of not being able to do all the things I used to be able to do. I'm tired of feeling like my body has been overtaken by some strange alien who is transforming me into something and someone else!


Although, with that being said, I'm actually more OK with this stage of pregnancy than I was with those first 12 nausea-filled weeks at the start. Those totally sucked worse.


One bright side? I have successfully avoided getting the linea negra (dark line from belly button) and my belly button never popped out. Oh yeah, and I have no stretch marks!


So... what did the doctor have to say today????


Ha... pretty much nothing new. I really wish all these damn doctors would get on the same page with their information. The basic gist is that I am now 80% effaced and 3cm dilated, but they won't induce me this week because it's my first baby. The hospital won't let them induce earlier than 39 weeks without legitimate concern. And since the baby isn't over 8 lbs. (or they don't think she is yet) that's not an option.


Blah. Blah. Blah.


Every visit their information changes. And I'm tired of it. I'm also overwhelmed. I greatly appreciate everyone's concern, and please don't take this the wrong way, but I can't be texting, emailing, calling, and Facebooking everyone at once. My priorities are my husband, my father, and my mother. From there, everyone will get information in due time. You *know* I will be keeping you updated if I go to the hospital. So let's just please leave it at that for right now.


I just need a minute to breathe.

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Two For the Books

Happy 2nd Anniversary, Puff!!!!
 
 
 
At this time, two years ago, I was a bundle of nerves gearing up toward the wedding I had been planning all my life. OK, so, in reality, it didn't take that long to plan. C'mon... I'm sorta a born planner! Right... so we spent the morning readying the venue and then we had lunch together at Panera. I headed off to get my hair done and met the girls for make-up application at Dillard's. Then it was back to the hotel to get all gussied up and head out for photos. We all piled into a pimped out mini-van that a dealership had lent us and headed to the middle of the ghetto for our photos at an art gallery and an abandoned building.
 
Then it was time to actually say "I Do."
 
And it was awesome.
 
The past two years have been filled with ups and downs... although most of the downs were the past 4 or 5 months. However, we have successfully weathered through and I still love Puff more than ever. In fact, I kinda maybe love him more now than I ever did before. I think that's how it's supposed to work, right? So... with the pending arrival of baby Bimmer, we weren't sure if we would actually be able to celebrate our anniversary ON our actual anniversary. So, we picked May 5th and made reservations at a nice steak restaurant that we had never been to before. Puff nixed my original selection, but it was probably for the best, since I would have been pissed to not be able to drink my fave martini.
 
 
 

 
At 37 weeks, I was feeling ginormous! It was the first day I actually noticed significant swelling in my hands and feet and it was almost 90 degrees outside. So, trying to look cute and feel sexy was a bit of a challenge! In hindsight, agreeing to wear those shoes just to appease the hubby was a BAD, BAD idea!!! But we chowed down on some bacon-wrapped scallops, grilled steaks, and a heavenly chocolate torte.
 

 
All told, it was a pretty good way to celebrate. The reality, however, is that I wouldn't care if we never had another fancy meal out or another occasion to get gussied up. I love my husband and just want to scream it from the rooftops! I won the lottery with this one. And I surely hope he feels the same way!
 
Now we just need to make it to our 5 year anniversary, where he has promised a NASCAR meets Riverdance themed vow renewal in Las Vegas. (I hope he's kidding!) And then for 10 years, we're getting to New Zealand, come Hell or high water. I just hope he didn't agree to that because he knows how badly I want to go there and thinks that's a good way to keep me sticking around. Ehh... he knows me well enough. He's probably right to do that.
 
LOVE YOU BABY!!! Happy 2nd Anniversary!!! Here's to many more to come!

Monday, May 14, 2012

Moon Over Baby

If I had been working this spring, Puff and I would have definitely been partaking in a romantic weekend away to Highlands, NC, to stay at the uber-swanky Old Edwards Inn and Spa, like we did last year.
 
It would have been our babymoon.
 
For as much as we love to travel, treat ourselves, and spend quality time together, a babymoon sounded like a rock star of an idea. Especially when I had looked at my old work schedule and seen that basically all January, February, and March was jam-packed with chaos. We tenatively penciled it in for a weekend. Well, when the shit hit the fan, the trip had to take a backseat.
 
The "Travel" section on my photo gallery is stuck in neutral on our October trip to Myrtle Beach.
 
So, while there won't be any grand romantic trip away to rest and relax before Bimmer gets here, I hope we can find excitement and anticipation in knowing that our family vacations are about to become, well, more family-like. It will make our summer trip to Florida with Bimmer all that more special.
 
Another concept that I was strongly hinting at was the "push gift." Kimhead also had my back... discussing the options with Puff a few times. Again, me losing my job changed this concept drastically. I'm pretty sure the original gift on the table was something along these lines...
 
 
 
Puff probably still would have gladly gifted me with something extravagant and wonderful if I had let him. But the practical side in me just cringed at the thought of wasting money we could use to pay bills, buy diapers and formula, and build a cushion in case I don't find work in August like I hope. So instead, this is my gift...
 
 
It doesn't look like much, but it was exactly what I wanted. I had planned to take weekly photos of Bimmer anyway and when I saw this on Etsy, I just knew I had to have them. They will be perfect for all the weekly, monthly, yearly, and first day of school photos I expect to take. Of Bimmer AND of her future sibling. It was reasonably priced, practical - in the sense that it will get tons of use, and thoughtful since it will be a gift not just for me, but for all of us.
 
Having to take a step back and look at the world a bit more realistically when it comes to finances is probably a good lesson for both of us. Just because I didn't get a fancy trip or a diamond necklace doesn't mean that my life is any less for it. Or that our excitement and joy over this pregnancy is any less than it would have been with those things. I have always prided myself on being realistic, practical, and minimalist. No reason to lose that just because a baby is coming into play. Puff and I love each other immensely, and a free drive through the mountains with some pictures of waterfalls is just as good as an overnight stay in a hotel in the mountains. And photo blocks will be used all the time to document my growing baby daughter and I will be able to cherish those photos forever.
 
Plus, once I'm employed this fall, I fully expect that diamond necklace under the Christmas tree. ::insert charming grin::

Thursday, May 10, 2012

K-I-S-S-I-N-G


On our last trip to Atlanta, Puff was driving me around a part of town where we had never been before. He was pointing out landmarks, like where he had his prom, where the band director lived, and where he had his first French kiss. Woah... back up. Did you just point to a secluded park and fill in the blanks that the kiss was in the dark, after a fancy date, when you took her there to totally mack on her? Hmmm... strangely different from our first kiss. Ya know, the one that happened after we had dinner at Wendy's and I basically had to fling myself at him because he was being too shy and dammit, I just wanted him to like me!


Although I did marry him in the end. So there. Take that "Make-Out-In-The-Park-Beotch."


Then, of course, I started to reminisce about my own first French kiss. It was definitely not the romantic scenario that Puff had created. He totally trumps me there!



It was the summer after my freshman year of high school and I was working as a counselor at a summer camp. Halfway through the summer, I started flirting it up with a counselor in a different group. It was the first time any guy had ever really given me the time of the day in a "romantic" manner, so I was hooked. We would pass notes to each other, smile and wink when we passed in the hall, and even talked to each other on the phone for hours at a time. I was definitely smitten. So when the last day of camp came, I was horribly bummed. I waited to leave until the very last possible second, but he followed me out into the back stairwell. He hugged me and then went in for the kiss. There, in the unflattering light of the fluorescent bulbs, against the ladder to the roof access of the building, I had my first real French kiss.


::sigh::


A boy kissed me... even with those horrible bangs! Oh yeah, and the braces! I'm pretty sure weeks were dedicated to blabbering on about that in my diary afterwards!


Except... wait a minute. He wasn't a BOY at all. He was a MAN. A dirty, filthy, nasty, shouldn't have been able to work with children MAN. I was barely 3 years older than the kids he was responsible for in his group all summer. I was 15 years old. He was in his early 20s. He should have gone to jail.


I finally came out of the fog a few weeks later and realized how stupid I had been. I was wrapped up in some teen-girl fantasy world that was really, really dangerous. Did my intrigue toward older men ever go away? Nah... read here about my first real date! But I did become a lot more wary and cautious as to what was right and, ya know, legal. (Puff's only 4 years older than me, so that's totally kosher!)


I just hate that I feel like I wasted and marred such a great opportunity to have a first kiss. What a horrible memory for me to have! So, from here on out, I think we'll just forget about that kiss... and focus on all the future ones I'm going to have with Puff. Maybe I won't even have to buy him dinner at Wendy's first.

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

The Alien Inside


Puff and I got one last sneak peak at little Bimmer on Tuesday afternoon. Granted, it wasn't a GOOD peak, since it didn't yield any photos. But I'm getting ahead of myself...


As you know, they told me a month ago that Bimmer was "huge." They said they felt mostly baby when they pushed on my big ol' bump and there had been discussion of induction as early as 37 weeks. Except my bump didn't grow from weeks 33 to 35, so here we are in week 37 checking it all out again. We really don't care when she comes, just that she arrives healthy and happy!


The verdict?


Bimmer is riding super low in my pelvis (I noticed a significant drop this past weekend) so there weren't any good photos, but it also made it a wee bit hard to get a good gauge of the size of her head. After a few attempts at measuring her (and digging that wand crazy painfully into my pelvis) they got the guesstimate that she's about 7 pounds, 10 ounces right now. Granted, they said that can be off by a pound in either direction. Something surprising we learned? That there is a good amount of fluid in there. The last two docs had lead us to believe we didn't have much, but it was just the opposite. With the ultrasound, they were able to determine that my bump was probably bigger than it should be since I had a lot of baby AND a lot of fluid.


What does all of this mean? Well, the size of the baby combined with my contractions during the ultrasound and the pressure in my pelvis warranted them to "check" my cervix a week earlier than they normally would. And... I am currently 70 - 80% effaced (thinned out) and already 2cm dilated. I *knew* something had changed the past few days, and I would venture to guess this beginning of the first phase of the first stage of labor was that "something."


I'm not necessarily getting my hopes up, but the doctor did say he wouldn't be surprised if I didn't make it back to my next week's appointment. He said he would rather see me at the hospital. At this point, so would I! There is no way to get comfortable these days and we are just beyond ready to welcome Bimmer into our lives!

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Pregnant Porn

I've been awake since 3:30am. Laying down, especially on my side, is the most uncomfortable position to be in these days. So, why not troll Pinterest in the wee hours of the morning? Sometimes, you just find gems like these...



Jump over to this website to read all of the "Porn for Pregnant Ladies" post. Not a bad way to start, what I suspect will be, a very cranky day.

Monday, May 7, 2012

Map It Out

In what I can only assume is a fit of first-time-mother pre-planning, I have been diligently working on Bimmer's baby book AND first year scrapbook during my down time. We plan to keep the baby book for the typical stuff... all the stats of her birth, info on her shots, and who was at her baby shower and first birthday party. However, since I am an avid scrapbooker (although not a crazy fanatic) I wanted to do something special to document her first year.
 
Since 2008, I have made a scrapbook for each year, rather than printing the thousands of photos I take. I will also make special scrapbooks for special occasions and trips... like Scandinavia or our wedding. So it seemed like a perfectly natural fit for me to create one for Bimmer's first year. (At this point, I don't intend to make one for every year, but rather just stick to the family one.) I've mapped out pages for my bump photos and professional maternity shots. I've started templates for her first photos in the hospital and for her homecoming. I have place-holder notes of where her professional newborn photos will be placed and a running list of other things I want to be sure to capture. (First bath, family visits, etc.)
 
I even sat on the deck one afternoon, traced leaves from our oak tree and ivy and jasmine, and made her a family tree.
 
Then, inspired by a post over at YHL, I also have printed out a page for Puff and I to notate our predictions about Bimmer's future... like her favorite toy, first word, and future occupation.
 
However, this unassuming map is, by far, the thing in her scrapbook I am most giddy over. It's no surprise to any of my friends or avid readers that I am always on a quest to pick up new states, territories, and countries. I'm in a race with my good friend, Anna. (While I am technically "winning" in the states category and am close on the countries, she trumps me hands down because she actually goes and LIVES in some of these places versus pops by on a cruise ship!) So, I figure it was only right to start Bimmer's life off right with a little travel. If all goes according to plan, before she hits 3 months old, she will have been to 7 states. I will gladly stop and get her out of her car seat to take photos for evidence, if you so require. (Anna won't let me count the 8 states I visited while Bimmer was in-utero.)
 
As we inch super closer to her arrival, I am getting more and more anxious to bust out a marker and slowly color in the states as she ticks them off her list. Puff and I fully intend to travel as much as possible with her and any future sibling. Yes, we realize how crazy we sound. But my parents made it work, so I know we can too. Will we be jetting off to Iceland one year and then to Turkey the next? Of course not. But that doesn't mean we don't already talk about the museums in NYC we want her to see, or the monuments in Washington DC we hope to visit with her. We want to cruise the Pacific Coast Highway in California with her in the back of our convertible and hike to natural wonders in Utah. Plus, ya know, take her to Iceland.
 
Anna has graciously offered up her roaming gnome, Alfred, to be the baby's godfather. I don't think there is anyone better suited for our future globetrotter.

Saturday, May 5, 2012

Update x2: Bucket List


Thought I would do one more update on the Pre-Baby/Unemployment Bucket List before Bimmer actually arrives. In general, I got most of the stuff finished, or at least mostly accomplished. Could I have gotten it ALL finished? Sure. But there were depressing days where staying in bed under the covers just sounded a lot more realistic. All told, I'm happy with what I got done and consider it a victory. Even if I still don't know how to use I-Tunes! (This round of updates are in blue!)


  • Catch up on printing hard copies of my private blog
  • Catch up on copying and saving the entries from this blog
  • Figure out how to use I-Tunes and update my I-pod
  • Save all the pics not currently saved to my external hard drive
  • Burn CDs of all the pics not currently on burnt CDs - ALL BUT 2012 ARE BURNT, SO I CONSIDER THAT A VICTORY

  • Scan old family photos, post on my photo site, save to my external hard drive, and burn CD copies
  • Finish as much of Bimmer's scrapbook as possible
  • Get a crib and dresser for Bimmer's nursery
  • Unpack the new flat screen TV we got for Christmas
  • Reorganize our filing system
  • Reorganize the shelves in Puff's closet
  • Sell the nightstand, filing cabinet, and non-flat screen TV on Craigslist


  • Sell the set of glass pots & pans that we never use on Craigslist - THEY ARE LISTED, BUT HAVEN'T SOLD YET
  • Have my car washed
  • Keep applying for jobs, even if I don't think they'd hire me being this pregnant
  • Vow to dust, vacuum, and change the sheets more often
  • Make a list of what to pack for the hospital
  • Convince Puff to convince the MIL that she should contribute to this child and buy us our fancy pack 'n play
  • Make the final decision on whether or not we will be committing to cloth diapers
  • Keep up-to-date on my 2012 scrapbook for the year
  • Sign up for a month of free Netflix to watch Season 5 of "Dexter"
  • Organize the baby's gear and clothes, once we have furniture in the room
  • Go for at least a 20 minute walk every day when the weather is nice
  • Schedule a pre-baby pedicure
  • Continue to have as many lunch dates as possible
  • Figure out how in the heck to make a baptism happen back in The Fort


  • Finish the photo gallery in the office
  • Frame the prints for above the toilet in the bathroom
  • Plan and book our trip to Florida for this summer to visit my mom
  • Research baby friendly hikes/walks/sites in the area for this summer
  • Accept every invite from friends to hang out, have dinner, see a movie, etc.
  • Bake at least two new things I've never baked before
  • Buy some cute little headbands and/or bows for Bimmer to rock
  • Decide on Bimmer's "coming home" outfit
  • Celebrate our 2nd wedding anniversary in May with a swanky steak dinner - WE CELEBRATE TONIGHT, 10 DAYS EARLY, BUT IT STILL COUNTS
  • Plant flowers in our window boxes on the deck
  • Install a smoke detector
  • Get cable installed in our master bedroom
  • Continue to fight, every day, my depression, addictions, and demons
  • Feel the overwhelming love and support from all my friends and family who have been there every step of the way... you guys rock my world!
  • Friday, May 4, 2012

    Flash Bulb Friday


    July 2008 - Bald Head Rock, SC
     
    Puff took me on a whirlwind trip to the mountains for the first time that summer. He started the day off with a picnic. He even had gone out and bought plates and cups for us to use. And borrowed a picnic basket.
     
    He's pretty awesome. I think I'll keep him.

    Thursday, May 3, 2012

    Dinner Music


    As my 2nd wedding anniversary rapidly approaches (it's coming up May 15th) I thought I would share a little bit about our wedding, since I wasn't blogging here at the time.
     
     
    Puff likes to call it a "theme wedding" just because our save-the-dates were concert tickets and our invites looked like concert posters. Beyond that, there weren't really any musically inspired moments, other than the actual music. And trust me when I say that I put A LOT of effort and planning into the music. I have been to too many weddings where someone asked the DJ to play the song "Separate Ways" so there was a strict NO REQUESTS policy enforced. But I'm getting ahead of myself...
     
     
    I wanted to focus today on the dinner portion of the wedding and the dinner music. I picked every song for the wedding, and this was our list during dinner...

    Fallin' For You - Colbie Caillat
    You're the Inspiration - Chicago
    Hanging by a Moment - Lifehouse
    She's Always a Woman - Billy Joel
    Stand Here with Me - Creed
    Hey There, Delilah - Plain White T's
    I'm Yours - Jason Mraz
    Faithfully - Journey
    Falling In - Lifehouse
    I Do - 98 Degrees
    I'll Be There for You - Bon Jovi
    Lifetime of Dreams - Journey
    When I See You Smile - Bad English
    Need You Now - Lady Antebellum
    Piano Man - Billy Joel
    Photograph - Nickelback
    Truly, Madly, Deeply - Savage Garden
    (I don't think we got to the last 3 or 4 songs though.)
     
     
    I will never forget the moment that 98 Degrees song came on and my entire table of high school girlfriends about dropped their forks and stared at me. Yup... I'm that cool.
     
     
     
     
    Of course I had to assign tables (both my parents and Puff's are divorced) and instead of just doing basic numbers, I had signs made that sent each person to a destination. Dublin, Venice, Auckland, etc. It was a highlight when the DJ pronounced Prague incorrectly! (I totally just read that a certain royal wedding stole this idea from us too! They named their reception tables for their favorite travel destinations. Copycats.) And at each table, there were three framed photos of Puff and I during our dating years.
     
     

     
     
    So, sticking with a travel "theme" instead of the aforementioned music "theme" I special ordered luggage tags to be both the favors and the guides to the seats. Yup... I'm still pretty proud of myself for that one. It was so Gail and Puff! And hey... OUR wedding should be reminiscent of US, right? I did love all those little details I came up with, even if I super hope I never have to plan a wedding ever again!

    Wednesday, May 2, 2012

    Picture Me This


    When Puff and I were back in The Fort in late March, we met up with our wedding and engagement photographer, Kacy, to get some snapshots of me in all my maternity glow.


    Eh... rather, all my maternity fatness.


    While I absolutely love everything she did for us and love the majority of the photos, I'm definitely having a hard time getting past the fact that my face is just FAT. (And why do all her other expectant mothers have no double chin? Not fair!) So, all my favorites are the ones that don't include my face. Of course, there's nothing Kacy could have done about that. It's all those damn frosted strawberry poptarts I've insisted on eating every day of my unemployment! Alas, here are a few of my faves for you to enjoy. She did such a great job and I hate that she's so far away that we can't have her do our newborn pics. I will, however, be penciling her in for Bimmer's 1 year portraits!
     


     

    Tuesday, May 1, 2012

    New Tunes Tuesday

    It's been a long while since I found some new music I was totally keen on jammin' to. Sure, there have been new albums come out by bands I totally love (expect a few reviews while I'm "off" on maternity leave) but I found a new, catchy, tune recently in the strangest of places...
     
    From my beloved Craigy Ferg.
     
    On some random night, a year or so ago, Puff decided to tape an episode of "The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson." We have taped every night since. We typically just watch his monologue and his tweets & emails portion. Sometimes, we'll watch a guest, if we care. But he just premiered a video last week as a promo to some shows he taped recently in Scotland. And I fell in love with the song they were playing in it!
     

     
    Apparently, they are an unsigned band from Glasgow, Scotland, called The Imagineers. And this song, "Imagineer" is the song they chose to play on the promo video. The band will apparently be on every episode the week they're in Scotland and they even perform his opening song each night. (I'm much more excited about this than his week in Paris. Bleh.) I read a story that said Craig sent his people ahead of him to "find a band he would've liked to perform with" back in the day. And they found The Imagineers.
     
    Pretty badass, right?
     
    So... I've been singing this song for a few days and thought I would share it with you as a break from all the pregnancy ramblings that have been happening here lately! Enjoy your new tunes!