Travel Often

“I see my path, but I don’t know where it leads. Not knowing where I’m going is what inspires me to travel it.” — Rosalia de Castro

Love Deeply, but Laugh Along the Way

"Happiness is only real when shared." - Jon Krakauer, Into the Wild

View Marriage as an Adventure

"Love is a flower which turns into fruit at marriage." ~Finnish Proverb

Fuel your body with GOOD (It's the only one you get)

He who has health has hope; and he who has hope has everything. - Arabian Proverb

Open your Soul to Motherhood

A Grand Adventure is About to Begin - Winnie the Pooh

A New Kind of Love is Born

Mothers hold their children's hands for a short while, but their hearts forever.

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Halfway There - 20 Weeks!

Halfway there! – 20 Weeks

You're at the halfway mark — congratulations! Your baby weighs about 10 1/2 ounces now and measures about 6 1/2 inches from head to bottom or 10 inches from head to heel (about the size of a banana). You may wonder why you're seeing two length measurements this week. Until 20 weeks of pregnancy, babies are measured from the top of their head to their "rump." That's because their legs are curled up against their torso during the first half of pregnancy, so they're hard to measure. Starting next week, you'll see only the head-to-heel measurement. Your baby is swallowing more these days, which is good practice for his digestive system. He's also producing meconium, a black, sticky by-product of digestion. This gooey substance will accumulate in his bowels, and you'll see it in his first soiled diaper (although some babies pass meconium in the womb or during delivery).

Well, that first half of pregnancy flew by. I can only imagine how this last half is going to go!

Perhaps at WARP SPEED? Summer always goes fast!
20 Weeks Today!!!!

I was finally able to get a solid good night’s sleep last night. YES! Today I feel SO much more like myself. I tend to feel great when I can get good sleep (one reason I’m scared for baby #2. I know what’s coming! Oh, the dreaded zombie phase.). I think my body basically shut down on me last night and was like, “OK! That’s it, lady! We’re crashing.”

Ahhh. Felt so great. I was still up three times to pee, but for the most part I can do that rather quick and in the dark! Mama has skills!

Holy smokes. Let me tell you about the dream I had two nights ago. Around 3:30 in the morning my grandpa visited me in my dream. I know he’s not feeling the best and he is in congestive heart failure right now (my dad went through this same thing earlier this year). I’ve been worried about him – praying as much as I can, but knowing that he is 87 years old. Trusting God has a plan for him and all of us because we love this man DEARLY. He tells me all the time that he’s lived his life and he’s ready whenever, but then I get mad at him. I like him in MY life!!!

Anyway, in my dream I was in my grandparent’s basement coloring with a red crayon. I heard footsteps. Then I saw my grandpa’s feet in his favorite slippers at the top of the steps. He shuffled down like he always does. Then he walked toward me in his favorite red flannel shirt. He looked over the picture I was coloring. Then looked at me with a sad look. “Christie. I’m not doing so well. It’s not looking good for me.”

“I know, grandpa.”

“First I wanted to see if you were thinking of me.” He looked at the picture I was coloring. There on the page was a photo of his face and my grandma’s that I had sketched. He smiled. “Remember, I told you I would come back and harass you when I’m gone? Don’t forget that!” 

I could barely see the whites of his eyes.  (He always teased us growing up that he’s from China since he has such squinty eyes.)

Then he started to walk away. I screamed. “Grandpa! Don’t go. I love you so very very very much.”

He kept walking. And then the BRIGHTEST LIGHT in the whole world shined in the distance. I felt my eyes pinching together even as I slept. It was weird. SO BRIGHT.

The light was beautiful. SO PEACEFUL. SO WARM. SO inviting. He kept walking. And then disappeared. It turned into the most incredible sunset and then was gone.

I woke up crying. I was shaking to the core. I had to wake up Karl. I could have sworn my grandpa had passed away. I wanted to call him, my parents, my brother. SOMEONE. But it was 3:36 in the morning. 

Instead I was up for good for the rest of the day, tossing and turning, contemplating life and death and love and the relationships we build during our lifetime.

In a weird way I felt like God was talking to me through the dream. Earlier that day I had called my mom in a panic. I was worn out and couldn’t find the motivation to pack ONE more box. I had a headache. I was all anxious. I was worrying about my grandpa. I had bought appliances earlier for the new house and had ten minutes to decide in order to get the best discount and wasn’t sure I thought them through. Did I make a mistake? I mean, that’s a lot of money! Then Karl went to Sears and found a couple of them cheaper. So I knew I’d have to cancel the order, but had to wait until the company opened the next day and knew I had a full day at work. When would I find the time? Moving day is approaching and there is still so much stuff everywhere. How will I get it all done in time? I hadn’t gone grocery shopping for the week. I didn’t have dinner cooking and Karl was on his way home with Jackson.

All minor things but totally big enough to consume my life at the moment.

Then that dream came. It put everything in perspective. WHO CARES about appliances and boxes and moving or the perfect meal. It’s all going to get done. It ALWAYS does. What matters is the people we surround ourselves with. LOVE. TIME together. JOY. Treasuring ALL the moments – as in the ones that eventually change and go away. The ones we can’t always hold on to as much as we WANT to.

The dream just made me realize once again how truly precious life is. How LUCKY we are to be here and have the chance to LIVE our lives to the fullest. NOBODY is telling us we can’t make the best of our days. We get to make the best of it all! Things ALWAYS get in the way. Stress is ALWAYS at the front door, trying to creep in. But the ones we love won’t always be there. It’s not like God decides, “OK, this one is going to get Cancer today. This one is going to get in a car accident.” I can't imagine he does that. 

It’s life. UNPREDICTABLE. It's all about our choices. Other’s choices. The environment we live in. Everything mixed together. With good, bad must follow. It sucks. ESPECIALLY when bad things happen to GOOD people.

But I still feel like there is no way God would make us fall in love with so many people only to have them disappear from our life for good. They are somewhere beautiful waiting for us – where there isn’t "bad" or a clock managing our days – only pure amazing. And we will go there too. That seems weird to me. I can’t imagine taking my last breath, but some day that will happen. I guess when my time comes and I lay there, I won’t be thinking about those stupid appliances or the big move into our new house. I’ll be thinking of all those I love and all those amazing things I did that made me who I am. And right now I get the chance to make the choice how I'm going to live. That is SUCH a GIFT!!!!!!!!

Oh yeah…getting back to the dream. I waited until 6 to text my aunt and she said she hadn’t heard anything, so all must be OK. We have a motto: “No news is good news.” So I went to my dentist appointment and called my grandpa as soon as I got out. My grandma picked up and giggled when I told her I had a horrible dream about my grandpa. She handed the phone to my grandpa. My heart JUMPED when I heard his voice, even more when he laughed. Ahhhhhhhhhhh! I got another chance to tell him how much I loved him. PERFECT.

·         Fruits & Veggies
·         I have been thinking a lot about Punch Pizza and Seafood!

I was doing really good at getting to the gym twice a week and walking at least once over one lunch break and then spending most of the weekend walking and playing at parks and running around outside with Jackson. Our weekends are pretty busy with adventures and activities but for the most part, I’m trying to get our house together for the BIG MOVE. This has been consuming me a lot. 

After 20 weeks I remember getting the WORST leg and foot cramps with Jackson. Let me tell you…I can FEEL them starting. I’m praying they don’t strike again, but I have a feeling… They are NUTS and SO painful!

Jackson and Baby
Jackson doesn’t completely know what’s going on, but he does understand there is a baby in my belly. He will sometimes crawl on my lap, rest his head on my belly and say, “Hi, baby!” It’s pretty cute. We also look through his photo albums and all the photos of me and daddy and my growing belly. We explain that was him in there. He’s talking SO much lately. He is ADORABLE.

160 lbs. Yep, I’m up about 15 lbs now. I get frustrated from time to time, but I know we’re eating clean, I’m still exercising and moving the best I can so I have a feeling it won’t be horrible to take off the weight again. And I’ll be chasing TWO kids around. I’ll be active! So yeah, I went to the pool with my bikini on. BOOM!

20-Week Ultrasound
We go next week! We’re getting a Level II to check out baby’s heart! We want to be safe because of the heart defects on my side. We are NOT finding out what we’re having. The surprise is just TOO much fun!

Life is too much fun! Get out there and LIVE IT!