Tuesday, June 29, 2010

dat hot?

Jude is suddenly very concerned about the temperature of things. At first he used the phrase appropriately. When he saw us cooking, he'd ask, "Dat hot?" He'd also ask when he pointed to my coffee cup or walked on our stone patio during the day. Jude would take a bite of warm food and question, "Dat hot?" after which we'd show him how to blow on the bite to cool it off.

Apparently Jude's decided that the words "hot" and "cold" are interchangeable. "Dat hot?" he asks when I hand him a cup of cold milk, open the freezer, or hand him a grape. Even though I'm excited that Jude is putting two words together and that he understands that hot things hurt to touch, we're working on differentiating between the words "hot" and "cold." At the moment, it's one of my favorite things he does. The sweet bug points to something, looks up at us with his big blue eyes, and questions the temperature. I know this is extrapolating more than necessary, but I love that I see trust in his eyes when he asks. He's learned that Mommy and Daddy ask him not to touch hot things because he'll get hurt, and he's learned that he can trust us to keep him from getting hurt. It does my heart good to see that vulnerable trust in his eyes.

In other news, our week without Shawn has thus far gone surprisingly well! I made a ton of plans each day in order to keep both of us busy, and it seems to be working. Jude and I went swimming with one of my precious small group girls - Brittany - yesterday. This was Jude's first time in a big pool, and he loved every second of it. I actually dunked him under water several times, and was so excited that he didn't freak out. I'm sure it helped that Brittany was cheering for him as he came up out of the water and distracted him from the fact that he couldn't breathe for a second and now had water in his eyes. I had so much fun catching up with Brittany, and Jude had fun trying to "get" her with a toy shark. Since birth Jude has loved water - I foresee many swim meets in our future!

Beyond just missing Shawn, the only real difficulty of him being gone is how easily I get physically worn out right now. Shawn usually gets Jude in and out of his car seat, and is very often the one to carry him in and out of stores. I guess I didn't realize how taxing it is to do all those things (along with constantly picking up toys, crumbs, thrown sippies, and Jude himself when he wants to be held) and be eight months pregnant. I've started having contractions more often in the evenings and my back just about kills me by the time Jude goes down for the night. But seriously - if a sore back is the biggest thing I have to complain about this late in my pregnancy while Shawn's gone for a week, then I feel like things are going pretty dang well!

We miss Shawn a lot, but Jude and I are going to visit camp for a day soon, and then he'll be back home before we know it. Until then, I'm filling my time by keeping Jude busy, sewing, spending time with friends, and watching Gilmore Girls (my guilty pleasure after Jude goes down for the night). Somehow watching an entire season of a show that Shawn can't stand makes his absence slightly more bearable. At least that's what I'm telling myself.

Monday, June 28, 2010

children's museum

The Winston-Salem Children's Museum has a discount ticket program where one Friday a month their ticket prices drop from $7.00/person to $3.00/person. $21 for the three of us to enjoy the Children's Museum seemed a little steep to me, but $9.00? Definitely worth it. This past Friday happened to one of the discounted days, so we met our friends Matt and Patrice (and Jonah) and enjoyed the fun!

(The photos are in backwards order, by the way. I'd fix it, but...I'd rather spend my time sewing). One of the rooms was a Food Lion (a local grocery store) with stocked shelves, a pretend check out counter, and kid-sized carts to push around. Shawn thoughtfully taught Jude how to sweep all of the cans of veggies into the cart with one arm. That should be fun when we're in a real grocery store.

Jonah gave Matt kisses for the first time! Unfortunately I'm too slow and didn't get a photo of the actual kiss, but here are a couple of him going in for the kill. Open mouth toddler kisses are the best. Incredibly gross, but the best nonetheless.

One of Jude's favorite spaces was this little play house. He even cooked us dinner - steak in a bowl! Yum!
Setting the table...
Everyone knows that a whisk is a vital tool when making steak in a bowl.

Daddy took a moment before dinner to get a bubble bath:

Jonah playing music on the stringless harp, and Jude discovering the treasure chest:

Jude and Daddy playing with veterinary tools:
Checking out the animals in the vet's office. Shawn's holding a puppet that is three baby birds in a nest.
I just wanted to point out that while the kids were playing, Matt wandered off to figure out what creepy things were on the x-rays.

We had a lot of fun, and I think it was good for both Patrice and I get out of the house and have a change of scenery for the boys. It may just because the boys are both relatively young and not ready to get the full benefit of the Children's Museum, but I have to say that I was glad we didn't spend $21 for the hour and a half that we spent there. Shawn and I are both still so glad we went, and we had a lot fun watching Jude explore and learn!

Sunday, June 27, 2010

old school sunday

In honor of it being Jr. High Camp Week (and perhaps me feeling a little sad at not being able to go), these are photos of my small group girls at camp in 2007. The year after this I went to camp six months pregnant with Jude, and then last year was my first year not going. There's no doubt I'll eventually get used to not attending as many events and trips as I could pre-children, but it's still tough to not be partners with Shawn in his ministry.


Kayla (camp is always during the week of July 4th. We were sitting on a hill, waiting for fireworks to start)
Brittany, Hannah, Maddie, & Sara:

Thursday, June 24, 2010

raising a narcissist

Jude fished my camera out of my purse the other day, handed it to me, and insisted I take his photo. When I snapped the photo, this is what I got:

At least he's a cute narcissist.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

baby deuce update

At 33 weeks, Baby Deuce now weighs approximately five pounds and is about seventeen inches long! Everything measured great at our appointment last Friday, and he seems to be doing just fine in there! As he's getting bigger, I'm starting to be able to feel his kicks, punches, and rolls more prominently, which I love. He's especially active in the evenings, and I can usually get him moving if I eat something cold or drink ice water (something I've been craving like mad lately), which is pretty much adorable.

Starting about two weeks ago, I began having dreams every night that my water broke and I went into early labor. In my dreams, I was always very panicked about who was going to keep Jude for us and I was worried about the fact that we didn't have much ready for this baby yet. I decided to go ahead and get as prepared as we could - not so much because I genuinely think we're going to go into early labor, but more to stop the anxiety and dreams about such.

I bought hospital and postpartum supplies and my hospital bag is now packed and ready to go (along with a list of all the last minute stuff I'll need to grab). I have a Labor Call List of people we need to give a ring when I begin labor, and the baby's room is set up and ready to go. We have a few more things we need for this kiddo, but we'll wait until closer to my due date to get those. I've typed up instructions for Jude for whomever stays overnight with him while we're in the hospital, and I've also set up a spreadsheet to track those early weeks of breastfeeding, diapers, and sleep. I know myself well enough to know that I'll likely find other baby-related projects, but the only other thing I feel compelled to do in my time before labor is to start cooking and freezing meals to have on hand after our parents leave and it's just Shawn and I.

This may seem like overkill, but trust me - it's brought me no end of peace of mind. I feel like I can take a deep breath, stop worrying, and enjoy tolerate the end of my pregnancy. Because it took me several weeks to get the baby's room organized and ready, I feel the need to show off his nursery. While our parents are visiting, the baby will sleep in a bassinet in our room while the nursery will double as a guest room. Also, we're hoping to replace the current window treatment with window panels that block out light. That room is the first room of the house to get flooded with sunlight in the mornings, so we definitely need something more than a swag curtain if we expect this baby to sleep later than daybreak!

And the sweet baby's crib. This is the same bedding set that we used for Jude. We took the ruffle off of Jude's crib a long time ago, and the bumper pad came off when he was around 13 months old and started climbing on top of it. Since all we were using from the bedding set was the sheet, we just got Jude a couple of crib sheets and gave the set to his brother. Let the hand-me-downs begin!

So until I actually do go into labor I'm focusing on 1)enjoying time with Jude, 2)sewing Serwa Chic products so that I can ease slowly back into things after maternity leave, and 3)cooking and freezing meals. If you happen to have any recipes for meals that can be easily frozen, feel free to pass them along! Now that I'm spending less time worrying about my to-do list, I'm starting to get excited to meet this baby.

I can't wait to see who he looks like (Shawn and I both think he'll look a lot like Jude, and Shawn's theory is that he'll have dark hair), and what kind of personality he has. I'm looking forward to watching Jude grow as a big brother, and I can't wait for the first time our family of four is snuggled on the couch and I can say, "Yep. These are my boys."

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

it's on like donkey kong

It really all started with spaghetti. Our little family was sitting down to dinner, and on Jude's plate for the evening was that fateful spaghetti. It's not that he doesn't like spaghetti, he actually really does. Jude just gets tired around dinner time and can sometimes be....well, spirited.

I had been telling Shawn for a couple of days that I needed to figure out a better discipline method for two primary behavior issues. The first is Jude hitting me (or Shawn...but it's usually me). If I pick Jude up from doing something I told him he couldn't do, he gets angry. He winds back his arm, and I can see straight up defiance in his eyes as he brings his hand forward to hit me. Telling him "no" and putting him down has proven to be ineffective, and something just strikes me as wrong in teaching my son not to hit by slapping his hand. Beyond that, when I did pop him on the hand it just made him more angry and more likely to hit me again. Getting into a hitting fight with my toddler is just not high on my list of things I'd like to accomplish.

The second behavioral issue is Jude throwing his food. If he decides he's finished eating, he apparently wants all of his food to disappear, preferably on the floor. As it turns out, vacuuming crumbs from our floor every three hours also isn't how I'd prefer to spend my time.

So back to spaghetti. Jude was in a funk and had decided that he was done eating. Rather than signing "all done," or even handing us his utensils to signify that he was finished, Jude threw himself into a rage that included some yelling and his tray full of spaghetti being thrown onto the carpet. The beige carpet that we'd just had professionally clean, incidentally. After Shawn sternly told him, "No!" a few times, I could see in his eyes that he was thinking, "Oh buddy, it's ON." Shawn stated, "That's it. Come here." Lifting a full on fit throwing Jude out of his high chair, Shawn set him next to my sewing table and said, "You disobey, you sit in time out." Naturally, Jude screamed more loudly and tried to get up several times. Shawn calmly picked him up and sat him back down saying, "Jude, you're in time out for disobeying. You can sit there until I tell you to get up." Eventually Jude got the point and sat in his newly discovered time out spot - crying off an on - for a full minute.

Once a minute had passed (and the spaghetti had been picked up), Shawn crouched down to Jude and said, "I love you buddy. Daddy put you in time out because you disobeyed me. You're all done now. Can I have a hug?" Shawn scooped a much more calm Jude up in his arms and hugged him for a minute, after which Jude was content to wriggle down and play calmly while Shawn and I finished with a peaceful dinner.

Since that incident, Shawn or I have needed to put Jude in time out about once a day on average - and it's always for either hitting or purposefully disobeying. I give Jude one warning, "If you hit Mommy, you're going to time out." If the behavior continues, I sit him in his time out spot (next to my sewing table in the living room and on a chair in his bedroom) and count to 60 in my head. He usually cries for the first twenty seconds, and then sits pretty calmly the rest of the time. Since his first time out, he's actually never tried to get up until we tell him he's all done. Once 60 seconds have passed, I get on his level and 1)Tell him that I love him and 2)Explain why he was in time out. Then I give him a hug and we go on about our day. So far, one incident of time out has resulted in a much more obedient and calm Jude throughout the rest of the day.

I'm so grateful that Shawn set the first precedent for time out. I have a feeling his sternness helped Jude to realize that this is serious business, and is probably the reason Jude doesn't try to get up until we tell him. I'm also not sure I could've handled Jude's despondent little face for a full 60 seconds had I not seen Shawn do it and Jude survive.

While putting Jude in time out definitely gives me a minute to become less frustrated, I actually think it benefits Jude the most. He has a chance to be removed from the situation and step outside of his cycle of anger and misbehaving. I'm also grateful to have a discipline method that works to not only stop the behavior, but to calm down all parties involved. That seems like a win-win to me!

Sunday, June 20, 2010

of fatherhood

You know, it's not hard to be a father. We all know that all it takes is a little recklessness and bam - welcome to fatherhood. No, being a father isn't tough. Being a Daddy, though? One of the toughest jobs in the world.

I don't think many would disagree with me when I say that the world is littered with defunct and ineffective fathers. I might even go so far as to say it's a big reason our world is so screwed up. But if you look closely, really closely, you'll see that the world is also speckled with incredible Daddys. They're not easy to spot, but the symptoms are all the same. Children who feel safe. Kids who are disciplined sternly but not harshly. Wives who are loved with passion and faithfulness. Families that are stable and who look to Dad to better understand God.

I take Father's Day very seriously in this house because I know the mess our family would be in if Shawn weren't the incredible Daddy that he is. I know God better because of the sacrifices Shawn has made for our family. I understand grace more deeply because of the unconditional love Shawn fleshes out on a daily basis. I experience God's joy over His children being His children when I watch Shawn wrestle and tickle his son. I grasp submission more fully as I've learned that Shawn often knows what is best for me before I do, and does the same for Jude.

I know, it kind of sounds like I'm talking an awful lot about my husband as opposed to my children's Daddy, doesn't it? Yeah, yeah, Shawn's an incredible husband and I'm blessed beyond my wildest imagination that he chose me. What I didn't know when I said, "yes" was how great of a Daddy he'd end up being. Shawn loves that kid with everything in him. I daresay he loves Jude more than he thought possible. And then there's this look that Jude gives Shawn. I catch it just about once a day, but you never know when it'll happen. Sometimes it's when they're playing cars together, sometimes it's when Shawn's changing a diaper, sometimes it's as Shawn is rocking Jude before bed. Jude stops what he's doing and looks into Shawn's eyes. Then Jude's eyes get big and serious, and then they start to crinkle at the corners. Shawn usually says, "Hey buddy. I love you," and Jude's eyes get full-on squinty as his entire face breaks out into a smile and he exclaims, "Da Da Da Da!!!!"

It a simple look, and often a quick look - but it's unmistakable. With that one look, Jude is saying to his Daddy, " I feel safe with you. I know you, I trust you, and I love you. You're my Daddy, and I really like to be near you."

Could there be a higher calling than that?

Shawn, thank you for being such a great Daddy to our sons. I know it's not easy to balance ministry and fatherhood, and I know sometimes you feel like you don't see Jude for days on end. But yet I know - beyond a doubt - that you consider leading your family in Christ to be your first ministry, and I can't help but respect you profoundly. Thank you for being a man who works harder than anyone I've known, but who loves his family with even more passion than his work. Thank you for smothering our son in kisses - even when your beard tickles him - and telling him at least twenty times a day that you love him. Thank you for teaching him about God, for exemplifying Jesus, and for showing him how to listen to the Holy Spirit. Thank you for being more than a father, thank you for being a Daddy.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

adventures at the zoo

While Shawn's family was visiting over Memorial Day weekend, we decided it would be a perfect excuse to take Jude and his cousins to the zoo! We'd been hoping to get Jude there before the baby was born, so Memorial Day weekend seemed like great timing! The kids all did phenomenally, especially considering how hot it was. We were hoping Jude would sleep in the car on the way down or nap if we pushed him around the stroller, but alas - he foiled our plans and stayed wide awake. Well, wide might be an overstatement. Sort of awake.

Daddy and Jude looking at the alligators. In case you're unaware, I have the most amazing husband in the world. He did most of the hauling around of Jude and checked in with me a lot to make sure I had enough water and ask if I needed to rest. I'm seriously so blessed to have such a thoughtful husband.

See what I mean by not quite wide awake? This was at the first exhibit we saw - the poor thing could barely keep his eyes open.
Noah (Jude's sweet cousin) and Jude:

Shawn thinks this picture is funny because it looks like Jude has a man's arm and is trying to give coffee to the alligator. I think it's funny because you can see Jude's hair in the back that looks like we tease it. We don't, it's just the result of the car seat and stroller - but the 80's would be proud by the height that is achieved.

Jude's absolute favorite exhibit was the gorillas! They would run and bang the glass - scaring both Jude and Noah and making them giggle in delight.

An afternoon thunderstorm rolled in while we were visiting the gorillas, so we were glad this particular exhibit had shelter. The family hung out for about half an hour while the kiddos got their gorilla-watching fill. Once the worst of the storm had passed, we braved the rain for a few other exhibits and experiences.
Finally, on the way back to the car at the end of our day, the little one crashed.

It was a long, fun day and we were so glad to share the experience with Shawn's parents and sister. We're glad to know that we have a fan of the zoo and can't wait to go back once we're a family of four!

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

potty training

was a failure. I had everything ready today and was genuinely expecting good results. Potty Chair clean and ready? Check. Jude naked and cute? Check. Carpet cleaner handy? Check.

At around 10:30 I sent Shawn a text that read, "potty training round one: Jude=3; Mommy=0." Around 3:30 the text I sent Shawn read, "round two: Mommy=0; Jude =1. plus one bonus point for pooping on my pants."

I went with the naked method (having your child run around naked so that 1)You can tell when they're going potty, and 2)They can correlate the feeling of having to go potty with actually urinating) mostly because I haven't heard of any other way to do it. While Jude was super cute running around naked all day, he still didn't seem to get the cause and effect by the end of the day. Perhaps most disconcerting to me was that around 4:00pm he started walking strangely and getting really fussy. It took me a bit, but I realized that he was constipated because he didn't want to go "#2" in the potty. I tried a couple of times, but he just wouldn't go. I put a diaper on him while Shawn and I went to AT&T, and after about an hour he went just fine. I've read enough to know that it's not good when a child starts to hold #2 through the potty training process. If Jude were 2.5 or 3 years old I'd press through, but it's just not worth it at nineteen months.

I had originally planned on sticking with it for at least three full days, but our day was completely miserable. Jude was cranky, I was cranky, and not a single drop of pee made it into the potty. I could continue on and try it again tomorrow, but I have to be honest - it's not worth it. I'll keep the potty chair out and will probably even do some naked time when we have long stretches around the house, but I'm so not forcing this. I thought it'd be nice to not have two kids in diapers at the same time, but I already accepted it was likely. It looks like Jude will potty train in his own time.

Potty training, you got the best of us, old friend. You may have won this battle, but just know....we're comin' for ya. Oh we're comin' for you.

Monday, June 14, 2010

so it begins

It's inevitable, really. No matter how hard you try to give the second child/pregnancy the same amount of attention as the first, it's just different. Even though I have to double check online to remember how far along I am and I'm not nearly as careful about not eating foods on the "no-when-you're-pregnant" list, I hadn't really thought much about how very differently we're preparing for our second child as opposed to our first. That is, until we registered this weekend.

My sweet friends Jenn and Patrice informed me that they're throwing us a baby shower in July! I was surprised, but felt very blessed that they would go through all that work on Baby Deuce's behalf. Because I'm OCD and having lists makes me feel like I can control things I actually have little control over (can you tell I was a Counseling/Psychology major in college?), I had been compiling an exhaustive list of all the things we needed for this baby. I think I may have started this list within a week of finding out we were pregnant and I get immense satisfaction from crossing things off. I've been scouring yard sales, craigslist,consignment shops, and a local Mommy board to find good deals on things on the list, but as my due date grew closer I was starting to become a little concerned about all the little things we still needed.

So before we went to register on Friday, I added a few last minute things to the list and separated our items by which store would be most likely to have it/have the best deal. And off we went.

When we registered for Jude, I did hours of research. I checked out online reviews, talked to other Moms, and went into the store with only a vague idea of what we wanted to register for. We spent - literally - hours debating, agonizing, and then finally selecting each thing we were told we needed. I remember the Babies R Us lady commenting on how few things we ended up with on our registry, but I'm pretty sure we had at least 150 items.

Registering was a much, much different experience this time. In we went with list in hand and an ample supply of snacks for Jude. We spent half an hour in Babies R Us and probably the same in Target, and we were both quick and decisive. Don't mistake our speed for lack of caring or even excitement, we just knew what we needed and what would only clutter the house. We knew our preferences, and we knew what was actually important and useful to us in that first year. I will say that because we'll have two kids in cribs, two kids (most likely) in diapers, two kids in car seats, and two kids with a ridiculous amount of plastic toys, I was surprised by how much we ended up needing to prepare for another little one, but our motto quickly became, "only what we actually need." (Of course, I found out after I checked the Target registry online that Shawn apparently thinks we need the movie Where the Wild Things Are, and I got very excited about Babies R Us now carrying nursing bras and vitamin supplements.)

I could hardly believe my eyes when I saw that we only registered for 32 items at Babies R Us and 15 items at Target. I know it stands to reason that your list of needs is drastically cut with subsequent children, but part of me felt like those numbers were representative of lack of care or excitement in some way.

Many people have told us how difficult having two children so close together can be, and I keep hearing, "It's way harder to go from one to two than it was to go from none to one." My heart sinks every time I'm told that because truthfully, it was REALLY hard for us to go from none to one. I wonder what tantrums (Jude's), screaming fits (baby's), and meltdowns (mine) await us, and my heart drops to think about how we're going to do this. Shawn recently told me about a random call he got from a youth minister friend who had moved out of the area awhile ago. We last saw his family about a year ago, and talked to them about working towards me staying home. He was super excited and encouraging about that being a reality, and was excited when Shawn told him we were expecting again. They also have several kids who are very close in age, and he told Shawn, "The second is so much easier. That first one - they get the worst of you. You're a much better parent the second time around."

I've had no lack of Mommy guilt in knowing that this child won't receive the same attention Jude did. We probably won't have as many pictures, and I may miss documenting some of his milestones. I can try to not be that way, but in order to care well for both children, that's just the way it has to be. It's so freeing to realize though, that while he may miss out on a few of those things, he gets the benefit of Shawn and I being better parents. He gets to reap the rewards of having parents who are more confident, more stable, more relaxed, more knowledgeable, and hopefully less selfish. I mean sure, this baby might have to fuss a few more minutes before being picked up, but you can bet I'll remember to lower the crib mattress before he's old enough to jump out (not that I made that mistake with Jude or anything).

I don't know, maybe I'm naive. But that seems like a pretty fair trade off to me.

Saturday, June 12, 2010

a letter to jude

Dear Jude,

Yesterday you turned 19 months old, and I thought it was high time for another little note from Mommy. Daddy and I have had so much fun watching you grow from a baby to a toddler the past few months. It seems like some mornings you wake up and grew by three years! You're doing a lot of talking and are understanding even more. We love watching you grow and explore the world around you, as you're incredibly curious about the way things work.

As you're inching up on two years old I'm learning how to handle and nurture your sense of independence and your instances of anger. Like most kids your age, you get very mad when I don't let you do something you want (lately it's been things like going outside, taking a toy away, or just holding you when you want to run). I have to admit that I'm struggling with how to handle this new found aggression of yours. Right now, our motto is "It's okay to hit the furniture when you're angry, but not a person," and I try to tell you to find ways to get out your "angries" in a way that doesn't hurt anyone else. I'm not sure how much of this you understand, or even if I'm taking the right parenting tactics here. I just want to teach you that it's okay to be angry (even at Mommy and Daddy), but that there are positive ways to handle that frustration.

Alongside growing in your abilities to get mad and want independence, you're also displaying a sweetness and desire to obey that melts Mommy's and Daddy's heart. You're learning to give kisses (although kisses must be given on your timing alone!) and delight in running into Mommy's and Daddy' arms. Unless you're on a mission of playtime you absolutely love to cuddle and make us smile. My favorite thing you do right now is laugh when you hear Mommy or Daddy laughing - even if you have no idea why we're giggling. You just like to be part of the fun!

In the last two weeks Mommy left her job in the work force to tackle the job (and privilege) of raising you and loving your Daddy better. I have to be honest with you - not every day of staying home has been sunshine and rainbows, but it is - without a doubt - my favorite job I've ever held. Jude, I love spending my days with you. I love finding fun new things for us to do and showing Daddy what you've learned that day when he gets home. I love that your nap times and other things about your day are steady and predictable for you, and I love that my focus gets to be on taking care of you, your brother, and your Daddy. I want you to know, dear Jude, that being your Mommy has helped me be closer to the woman God created me to be. Betcha had no idea you could do that in your nineteen months of life, huh?

Pretty soon sweet son, you're going to have a little brother to hold and love! You're already a big brother to the baby in Mommy's belly, and we can already see what great care you're going to take of him. A lot of kids feel a little jealous when a sibling is born, so I want you to know that it's okay if you do. But would you like to know something? Mommy and Daddy love you just as much before this baby is born as we will after. Nothing - not a thing - could change how much we love you. You will always be our sweet Judeabug, and our favorite thing in the entire world will be to spend time with you. Our prayer is that you and your little brother will be really great friends, and that you'll be such a big help to Mommy and Daddy when he's very little. And once he's grown a bit, you'll have your very own playmate to play games and share toys with all the time (who will, no doubt be much more fun than Mommy)!

Jude, I love to watch you growing right now and think about what you'll be like when you're older. Judging by what I see now, you will most likely always carry with you a fierce sense of independence and strength. You won't be easily swayed to do something you're not fond of, and you'll have a strong sense of justice. On the other hand, I think you'll care deeply about the feelings of others. You have a surprising ability to understand when someone is sad, mad, or happy, and your instinct is to comfort someone who is sad, try to help someone who is angry, and join the joy when someone is happy. Just so you know kiddo - that sense of compassion is something many adults struggle to achieve. Don't lose that, okay?

Sweet Bug, I love you more than you realize. I just want to make sure you really understand - there's no amount of fit throwing, toy throwing, Mommy hitting, or angry yelling that could make me love you less. I love you regardless of how "good" or "bad" you're being, and while I don't like those behaviors I love YOU unconditionally. You're my Judeabug and nothing you do could change that. I love you, Jude.


Friday, June 11, 2010

hey you...

Happy Friday. Have a good weekend and get a little crazy with your bad self.

(yeah, so i got some crusted stuff up in my nose. so what? you've never tried to put cheese up your nose?)

Thursday, June 10, 2010

go dash!

I'm sorry for the delay in getting new pictures up - I recently switched from a Dell to a Mac, and it's taken me a little bit to find and organize everything. The weekend that my parents visited coincided with one of our town's minor league home games. Shawn had been waiting for an excuse to see a Winston-Salem Dash game, and was not going to pass up this opportunity!

Jude actually did surprisingly well and was mostly content to sit on a lap and watch all of the excitement. We did have to leave a little early in order to get Jude down at a decent time, but the Dash were killing the other team, so we were okay with that.

The team just built a brand new, fancy schmancy stadium downtown. If we had more money and fewer kids, we'd probably get season tickets and spend our entire summers there.

This game was apparently very special because the San Diego chicken was there (I think that's what he's called?). When I asked what San Diego chicken was (thinking they were referring to food), Shawn and my Dad just shook their heads. Apparently this was something I should've known. It turns out he's a famous mascot that travels to different games. I have to admit, his antics had me laughing out loud.

And then there's the Dash mascot. I personally think he's cute, but I have no idea what he's supposed to be. He's red and furry with a purple mohawk and lightening bolts for ears. Shawn says they bought the suit on clearance and hoped it would fit the team. I think he may be right.

Jude's reaction to the Dash mascot? What the....?!

Um...I'm just gonna keep eating my shark crackers and maybe he won't get too close.

We did try to get a photo of Jude and the mascot, but he started crying when we got near. I don't blame him, he's pretty freaky looking. I know it did Shawn's heart good to watch baseball with his son(s), and we all enjoyed some family quality time!

Sunday, June 6, 2010

updating and stuff

Phew. It's been quite the week at the Maurer house. I finally stopped vomiting and was able to eat regularly (which for me, means I can have ice cream) by Thursday. Jude apparently got the same virus right about that time, except he's now had diarrhea for the past two days. He's now on the mend though, and has done nothing but sign "more" and indeed, eat more all day today. As I type this, he's yelling, "Uh gooo!" which is his version of "On your mark, get set, GO!" and running down the hallway. He's kind of a big ball of adorable wrapped in blonde hair, blue eyes, and excessively cute cheeks right now.

We had an OB appointment on Friday morning, and I think excluding our wait time we were at the office for an entire twenty minutes. Everything looks wonderful and is right on target! We were just starting to realize that we may have a pre-term baby at this point in my pregnancy with Jude, so it's very strange to feel so nonchalant about appointments.

I did ask the nurse about the Vitamin D I've been taking. I've been wanting to include this information in the blog, but wanted to wait until I was told by my doctor that it was okay. Basically, I read an article that Vitamin D deficiency can cause pre-term labor in pregnant women, and that most people are Vitamin D deficient. I started taking about 2,000 IUD extra (on top of the 400 IUD that are in my pre-natal vitamins) a day, and within two days I pretty much stopped having contractions. I may get a spell of three or four contractions every week or so, but they're much less intense and obviously less often than they were before. We went to the zoo last weekend with Shawn's family for something like six hours of walking in 90 degree weather. I drank as much water as I feasibly could, let Shawn push the stroller, and got off my feet when possible, but I was a little concerned about the price I'd be paying in contractions that evening. Would you believe that I did not have a single contraction? Not a single one. The only thing that has caused contractions recently was the vomiting. It was disconcerting, but once the vomiting stopped the contractions stopped, so I'm okay with that.

Never in a million years would I have thought to take Vitamin D, but whatevs. It's working!

Our nurse also told us that as we're getting closer to my due date, we'll need to start seeing the doctor every 2-3 weeks, and then once a week after I get to 36 weeks. It seriously feels like just yesterday that I found out I was pregnant. Am I really 30.5 weeks already? Do I really only have less than ten weeks left? You'd think I'd be used to the fact that I'm pregnant by now, but I'm still surprised by the large bump and need to be reminded that there's a reason I'm so tired. I feel like I have a split personality right now. There's one part of me that is very concerned about the details of having this baby. I have lists and a timeline and am scrupulously working on what our finances and budget will look like as a family of four. Then there's the other part of me. The part that genuinely forgets that we're going to have a baby and feels like I'm way too young to have a family of four. The part that just realized that we still need quite a bit before we're ready to have two kids still in cribs and diapers. This is the part that wants to scream at least once a week, "Holy crap! We're having a BABY! How on earth are we going to do this, are we plumb crazy?!"

Don't worry. I think it's the freaking out part of me that pushes the OCD part of me to prepare. I mean, if I'm going to have multiple personalities, the least I can ask is that they get along, right? Right. Right.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

my first day as a stay at home mom

...was vomit inducing, apparently. I had big, big plans yesterday. I was looking forward to taking a walk, spending quality time with a certain Mr. Judeabug, grabbing a nap, catching up on laundry, and getting the house cleaned. My body had a different plan, and that was to go haywire and vomit every hour and a half.

This was not a plan to which I agreed.

The sickness is starting to taper off, but I'm still feeling a little nauseated and weak. Perhaps the only way that I'm not a huge pile of pathetic icky-ness is because Rhonda came and took Jude for the whole day. She even took him to church tonight, after which Shawn will bring him home. I've been able to get sick in peace (poor Jude got scared anytime I vomited. i can't blame him - it was pretty violent), take a bath, and even take a two hour nap. And don't tell Shawn, but I may or may not have cleaned out and organized Jude's closet.

If the vomiting hadn't started tapering off today, I was going to have to get another prescription for Zofran. Unfortunately, the getting sick and lack of hydration were causing some pretty serious contractions last night. As long as I keep getting better, I'll hold off on prescriptions and concentrate on drinking as much water as my stomach will allow and staying off my feet.

I'm hoping and praying that this is just a surge in hormones causing third trimester morning sickness and not a stomach bug (or at least not a stomach bug that anyone else in the family or anyone in contact with Jude or Shawn gets). Nonetheless, because I'm OCD about germs I've sprayed every square inch or our house with Lysol and sanitized Jude and all of his possessions before he left this morning - just in case. If it weren't highly unhealthy, I probably would've sprayed him with Lysol.

The good news is that I didn't have to worry about taking off a sick day or trying to figure out when I was going to get work done! So day one and day two of stay-at-home-Momdom have been...interesting. At least it can only get better from here!