« August 2009 | Main | October 2009 »

September 29, 2009

Is it All Ready? - Pregnancy Update #27

The second most common question I get asked is if I have my nursery ready and in order. The answer is no, and I think that surprises most people. First time parents are often very eager to get their baby things in order. I suppose we're not your "normal" set of parents.

We have a room, that used to be an an office. I've moved the dresser out of the room, sanded it down, stained and varnished it. After I attach the hardware, I'll move it back into the room to use as a dresser again. Here is the dresser before any of the work began. Click here for the finished product!


The closet is bare, but ready to be filled with all of the baby things we will be getting/needing at the end of this year. The photo below was taken on August 22, 2009. Updates to follow as it "fills up." Let's hope she doesn't outgrow it BEFORE she is born! You can see how well our first purchase fits in the closet. That cute little doll bunk bed set in the bottom right is a Christmas present for my niece, Avery!


The desk is still in the room but needs to go. I've started to clean it off and we moved our filing cabinets that used to be next to it. The computer will go, the desk items will be moved to our kitchen, where they will reside in a sofa table I am refinishing and turning into a small desk.


The Tigers wall will probably stay. Mostly because I don't know what to do with the two seats from Tigers Stadium. Plus, they can always be used as extra seating. This is why it would have been "convenient" to have a boy.


The rocking chair I've had since college. My 7 roommates and I bought it at goodwill because we needed more seating in our dorm room. I believe 7 of us girls split the $7.50 cost. I somehow ended up with it after our sophomore year, and refinished it while in college. The cushions are original, so the plan is to re-upholster them. Don't worry, I'll show you some after photos of that, too!


The crib came from my sister. She gave me tons of baby stuff. Her in-laws brought it to us from Georgia (and we are so grateful for all of it) so we have to put the crib together and get a mattress and bedding.

Here is the crib in the garage. There's a toddler bed in the mix of those pieces, too!


The crib will go here...yes, that's an aqua globe in my plant.


This bedding has been purchased...


Here is SOME of the baby stuff we received from my sister. We have a few more tubs that I didn't take photos of. 


I'll find some new window shades/blinds that mesh with the bedding, as soon as I receive the bedding...


We just painted and re-carpeted the house about a year ago, so the walls are staying the taupe color and so is the carpet. Besides, we need to save our money for the important things in our daughter's life, like her Girl Scout uniform, prom dress and a car when she turns 16.

The nursery is "in the works." We know what we're doing, it's just finding the time to do it!

September 27, 2009

Bookshelf + Baskets = Masterpiece

I think I am drawn to any sort of shelf and love to have them in all my closets and any other place I can stash them. In college I had my dad custom make shelves for each of the three places I lived. I'd measure and send him my "plans" and the next time I came home, my custom shelves were ready to take back to school with me.  When my grandfather passed away and I was given the opportunity to take almost anything I wanted, I couldn't pass up on two shelves. One was a bookshelf show below.

I wasn't sure what I was going to do with this shelf, and my husband rolled his eyes when I told him to load it into the truck, but I know that it's hard to come by decent, affordable (free in this case) bookshelves, so I stashed it in my garage for a few months. 

When I found out I was pregnant and we needed to reduce and relocate our office, I decided I'd find some sort of basket to put on my bookshelves and stash office items: tape, staples, note cards, pens, rubber bands, etc. I measured my area and checked out a few organization stores online. I found that Ikea had the size baskets I needed to fit my bookshelf. So one Sunday, my friend and I went to Ikea to get my baskets. Below is what happened when I got home.

Here is my "new" bookshelf. 


And the baskets I bought at Ikea. 




And this is the finished result! I'm amazed at all the storage! I was able to put candles and smelly things in the bottom three baskets and I still have one basket completely empty! 



September 24, 2009

2 Pounds - Pregnancy Update #26

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Today I had a doctor's appointment and was reminded by the nurse that I am 26 weeks and 2 days pregnant. This made me reflect on my first doctor's appointment when I stepped on the scale and was not happy with my weight as I began my pregnancy. Today my doctor told me she was very happy that I had gained 2 pounds since my first visit in May. I can't say the feeling was mutual, because I lost some weight after my first appointment and have obviously gained it back +2 but "it's baby weight" the doctor said.

My glucose blood test was normal/fine, the baby's heart beat sounded strong and according to the doctor, "she's a kicker." Too bad the doctor doesn't keep up with my blog to know that she karate kicked her dad in the face.

I was given the slap on the hand for sleeping on my back and doing crunches at the gym on my back. As the rebel and terrible listener I am, I blew it off and was determined continue with my normal ways thinking, "the hell with the doctor, I'll do what I want," until my husband said to me, "you don't care about the health of your unborn child."  Don't worry, I'll get him back, the next time he orders a refill on his Pepsi, I'll let him know that his health is important so he can live a very long time, for his daughter.

I'm cleared to fly to Atlanta next month to see my sister and niece for a long weekend; able to travel two hours to the thumb for Christmas and instructed by the doctor not to name my baby after her...she says no one would want the name Martha. I did tell her at least it's a name you can pronounce when you see it. She agreed. 

September 22, 2009

GTB - Pregnancy Upate #25

GTB = Glucose Test Beverage. It's an orange drink that a person drinks one hour before they have their blood drawn to check their sugar for diabetes. I've done this test before, but a friend who is also pregnant was concerned about drinking this beverage. I have to admit, it's not bad at all. It tastes like flat, orange soda.

Saturday after the gym, I decided to drink my orange beverage, stop at the dollar store to waste some time before heading to the lab for blood work. While in the parking lot I checked my voice mail, dug thru my purse and got out of my truck. As I shut the door to the truck, I quickly realized I didn't have my keys, and I locked the doors. I frequently lock the doors to my vehicle before getting out of it, using the interior locks, not the lock on the key remote. Because my "routine" was messed up (I stayed in the car instead of getting out right away) I ended up leaving my keys in the ignition. A stream of panic hit me, because I knew I only had one hour until my blood needed to be drawn. I quickly calmed myself down and began digging my my purse for my AAA card, which offers free roadside assistance. The thought did cross my mind that I could walk to the lab, it was just down the road, but later I realized it was about 3.3 miles down the road, and not a nice road, but a five lane road without sidewalks. 

After calling AAA and realizing my membership had been canceled - which didn't surprise me since we have roadside assistance through our car insurance and a year or so ago I decided not to pay my AAA dues - I went into The Dollar Tree and asked for a phone book. I began jotting down numbers to locksmiths, the dial-a-ride bus, the sheriff department and my insurance company. I called my insurance company to see if they could help me and they gave me a few numbers and told me to just submit my receipt to my insurance to be reimbursed for the locksmith service. 

I then called a local locksmith and was told he could be there in 1 hour and 20 minutes. This was a local call, and it would take him that long to get there? I was in need of help, so I didn't really question it but I explained to him I should be at my vehicle by then, I have to have some blood work drawn and will then be back to my vehicle. I thought we were all squared away and later I would realize I was completely wrong.

The next call is to my friend who literally lives "down the street." I had her take me from the dollar store to the lab and I was able to have all my blood drawn even though I had my lab information and paperwork locked inside of my vehicle.

I then called the local dial-a-ride transportation bus to arrange for a pick up from the lab back to the dollar store my vehicle was parked. Now, I've tried to use this county wide bus system twice. Once was on a Saturday years ago. My husband was at his parents house working on my car (some routine maintenance such as brakes, shocks, etc.) and I was at home, but we planned to eat dinner at his parent's house that night. Instead of him driving 20 minutes one way to pick me up at home, I told him I'd just call the bus and get a ride over there. Sadly, I realized you cannot call for a ride on the weekend unless you schedule it during their normal, Monday through Friday business hours. First attempt = unsuccessful. The second attempt was about a year ago. My car was going in for service and I needed a ride to work. I called 2 days before I needed the ride and explained where I needed to go and when and they the woman told me she was sorry, they were unable to accommodate me. I was baffled and floored. I vowed to never use that bus service again! So maybe the third time is a charm...I called on Saturday and got the "normal" recording that said I had to schedule my ride during the Monday through Friday business hours, but at the end of the message, was a number to get a hold of a driver on the weekend. I gave it a shot and Gary came to my rescue! Gary picked me up at the lab and took me back to my vehicle at the dollar store parking lot!

While waiting for Gary to pick me up, I quickly nabbed some money from the ATM machine at the medical center, and called the locksmith guy back to let him know I'd be at my vehicle shortly. The locksmith guy (again, remember this is a local number I called and a local company advertised in the local yellow pages) tells me he will be there in 1 hour and 20 minutes...because he didn't leave the first time I called! I tell him that's way too long for me to wait, I'll have to call another company.

I then call the sheriff department. I get an automated message that tells me no one is working and I am not given a number to dispatch for non-emergencies. So I suck it up and dial 911 on my phone. I immediately tell the woman this is not an emergency, but there was no other number for me to call. I explain my situation and she says police/sheriff no longer unlock cars, but she can give me the number to a tow truck company. Ahhh, a tow truck company, why didn't I think of that instead of a locksmith? I call a tow truck company and they can be to my car within an hour. This is great since I'm still waiting for Gary to pick me up.

Gary arrives, and my fare is $2. I only have a $20 from the ATM and I'm planning to just give it to him since he saved my butt from walking. He then asks me to go into the dollar store and get change. I give him $5 and tell him we are good. He picked me up in a bind and I am truly grateful for him.

A quick trip into the dollar store to blow off some time before my tow truck arrives to unlock my door, and a chat on the phone with my sister as I sit on the parking lot curb realizing it is just a perfect Saturday in September - at least the weather is perfect - and here comes "Brian" my savior. I think he unlocked my truck in about 90 seconds, and it took me longer to write my check and sign the bill than it did to get my keys back.

Then I "flew" to the lab to drop off my paperwork that was needed to perform the glucose test. Thankfully they had some late-comers so they were still there at 12:10 pm even though they close at noon. After that, a big sigh by me and I was on my way home.

I mainly posted this blog because my friend, who I mentioned at the beginning of this story, told me to let her know how my test went...I'm sure she is not expecting to read all of this and I wish her BETTER LUCK when she takes her glucose test in the coming days! 

Lastly, most people might wonder why in the world my husband didn't come to his pregnant wife's side to help her in this time of need. It just so happened that he was in a plane as all of this was going down, on his way from LAX to Detroit, and so I was left to survive on my own...




September 20, 2009

Good Bye Wedding Dress


It's been hanging in my closet for over a year and this week I made a decision to donate my wedding dress. I wanted to do this before the dress got too old to be considered usable and not old enough to be vintage.

A few people suggested I take my dress and make a baptism gown for my daughter, but I didn't see that as something that was very desirable since it would be a challenge to take an adult dress and fit it to an infant body. Other suggestions were to take part of it and make a hankie or garter out of it so my daughter can have it for her wedding. I wasn't able to justify that route because I'd be tearing apart a perfectly good dress and only using a part of it. I did try to sell it on craigs list, with no bites what-so-ever and I didn't even try eBay mostly due to their 9% fees. 

A quick search on the internet lead me an organization called Making Memories that offers a Brides Against Breast Cancer gown sale. I printed the paperwork, got a box, packed up my dress and now it's on its way to Oregon to make another bride very happy. Plus, it's a nice tax deduction if our daughter doesn't arrive until 2010.


September 17, 2009

ka-rah-tay - Pregnancy Update #24

I have a daily pregnancy book called The Pregnancy Journal and each day there is different information about my baby, myself, and sometimes different cultures and their birthing practices. On Sunday, September 6th, this is what the entry said:

As the baby's heartbeat becomes louder, it may be possible to hear the baby's heart by placing an ear to your abdomen - a yoga-like pose that may be quite impossible for you to achieve, but easy for others! A stethoscope will help you hear your baby's heart beat loud and strong. 

I read this to my husband and I thought it went in one ear and out the other until...the evening of Sunday, September 13th, he got close to my belly when I was laying in bed and started to talk to his unborn daughter. He then put his ear to my belly. I asked if he could hear anything and he said, "No." Then all of the sudden, she karate kicked him in the side of his face. A kick he felt for sure.

September 16, 2009

Avery's trip to Michigan

My niece, Avery, came to Michigan with her Grandparents earlier this month. My parents were able to spend a few days with her while she was here, and my husband and I also go to see her.

Avery does not like my husband. I believe it stems from an incident last Christmas. We were all at my parent's house and enjoyed a night out at the bar before our family Christmas.  Amazingly, my husband got over-served, so when we had to open presents the next morning, he was a little "under the weather." He was sitting on the couch, looking like death, and my dad was holding Avery, and harassing her. My dad tried to get Avery to go to Uncle Dan, but she was freaking out in my dad's arms. Uncle Dan was about to visit the porcelain god, so he wasn't at all into having Avery hang out with him on the couch. Ever since then, she has not wanted Dan around, she has not wanted to talk or look at him. She will eventually and very hesitantly open up to him, and usually he can lure her with a quarter or two, but during this last short visit, she wanted very little to do with him. But the morning after we left, she asked grandma where "Aunt Kadee and Uncle Dan" were, obviously not remembering she wouldn't kiss us goodbye the day before.

Avery is 3 and will be 4 in February 2010. Since we only care about photos and how darn cute she is, here are a few.



This Mickey Mouse shirt is true vintage. It belonged to my sister and I when we were young. 




My parents have this tree in their (new) front yard. I love it. I wanted her to sit on the "seat" but Papa said it was pokey, so he put her up there to stand. 


We thought on Sunday it would be the best day to go to the beach. It was 77 degrees and sunny when we left. 20 minutes later, and on the water, it was 10 degrees cooler and foggy. The north wind was super breezy, but Avery had fun building a sand castle with Papa.


September 14, 2009

They are Here - Pregnancy Update #23

Saturday, September 12, 2009

I think I noticed my first set of stretch marks. Yes, I said set. A few on each side of my belly. Somewhat high, near my ribs. I cannot confirm, since I've never had stretch marks, but I'm pretty sure that is what they are. I must have slacked on my twice-a-day cocoa butter lotion application...Let's hope they are not here to stay.

I'm blaming it on my trip to the gym today, 2 hours later, 904 calories burned and now I have stretch marks. Darn cardio class!


Monday, September 14, 2009

I inspected my body before taking a shower today and I didn't see any stretch marks. Maybe it was my blurred morning eyes, the lack of light or the fact that I am hoping they are gone. Stay tuned. 


Tuesday, October 13, 2009

I have not been able to locate any unusual markings on my belly (as of yet). Let's hope it stays that way!  

September 11, 2009

My Favorite Top Coat

I was introduced to Seche Dry Fast Top Coat when my friend painted my nails a month ago. I think this is one of the best top coats on the market! The smell is somewhat strong (which could be because of my hormone levels due to pregnancy) but it is so shiny for days on end! I say days because I have natural nails so a good polish job will last 4-5 days for me, not weeks like faux nails. It seems to wear very well, still staying shiny when I take it off to re-polish.

Seche Dry Fast Top Coat is available at Sally Beauty Supply stores for about $8 a bottle. I highly recommend you pick up a bottle the next time you are out. 


September 09, 2009

Disagreements - A blog response

This entry is in response to my husband's blog which can be read by clicking here.

Dear Husband,

We seem to be having the same conversation over and over about MY car. And you seem to be asking the same questions and making the same suggestions only to have me give the same answer, "I want my car to look like an original VW Beetle." 

Ever since the fourth grade I have wanted a green VW bug. I was somewhat certain my grandpa would get me one when I turned 16, even though I couldn't drive a stick -- and still cannot. But my 16th, 17th and 18th birthday came and went and there was no bug, so when I got one for Christmas/Engagement in December of 2007, over 15 years of dreaming came true. (And I thank you very much for that.)

Now I am the owner of a VW bug and you want me to conform to your idea of how my bug should look, lowered, sleeker, less "stock" accessories, tinted windows, and race tires. Let me remind you of the passage below. I asked you to write about purchasing my car and you returned a multiple page word document to me that included the following:

November 3, 2007
With my parents away in Delaware bringing back my Grandfathers truck, I took advantage of my Mother’s Jeep Liberty being free to travel to Bay City to look at a 1965 Bug. Let the record show, this is the Bug that I wanted. This was the car in the best shape, it was lowered, had fiberglass rear fenders, and a fiberglass flip front end. Brand new interior, new mechanical parts, and a little bit of chrome accents in the engine compartment. It also had a dual carb set up that came with it. I resist the urge to make an offer, because I have a couple more to look at, one was again a clunker, the other was about to become part of my personal history…


November 18, 2007
On my way back from Deer Camp 2007 on Drummond Island, I decide to detour through another buddies house, see his dogs, and head to Rockford to take a look at a 1964 black bug. This was a very solid piece, and the best car for the money. I didn’t like it as much as the blue one but it was in fair shape, ran well (actually had a better motor than the blue one) and was a bit cheaper.
Now I had a decision to make, which to buy?  I begin to talk myself into the blue one, pretty sweet ride, in good shape, the least amount of work, etc. But in the end, I can’t keep my conscious from telling me, “Kari would like the black one better, it is more of a “bug” than the blue one, the blue one is a future street / strip car, that is why YOU like it, and it won’t be your car!”

I rest my case. 

Your Wife


September 06, 2009

No Excuses - Pregnancy Update #22

I've come to conclude I've had a very easy pregnancy so far. If you are a mother and you had a difficult pregnancy, I suggest you stop reading now.

I have no excuses for anything. So far (at 23 weeks) pregnancy has not made sick or tired, it has not made my skin crappy, my hair does not appear to be thicker, my nails don't appear to be any healthier, my feet have not been swelling nor have my fingers. I feel fine. I feel like I have no excuses for not being able to do anything, or go anywhere.

The worst parts so far are the random, right nostril nosebleeds, the 2am toss and turns which have since stopped, and more recently the headaches caused by seasonal allergies (which I don't blame on pregnancy, but the weather and climate.) I haven't quite figured out what is going on when I go to the gym, but some aerobic classes that require me to perform a "knee up" move feel funky. It's as if I can feel my uterus in my abdomen. Occassionally my back will hurt, it's usually when I decide to do laundry, garden, move stuff around in the garage, clean the house, cook and watch TV all in one day.

My boobs aren't bigger, my feet are not growing, my stomach doesn't itch. I have yet to crave any food I cannot live without. I can still comfortably sleep on my back and I don't think I have a super sense of smell.

If anything, I complain that I cannot "do things" because I am pregnant -- like go in a hot tub, try mountain (trail) bike riding with my husband, waterslides, rollercoasters, etc.  

I'm sure things will change and evolve as my pregnancy progresses, but I'm keeping my fingers crossed and knocking on wood that nothing major happens.


September 03, 2009

H to the 3rd Power

I'm not sure what's going on, but for the past few weeks, almost every day is a bad hair day!

First, I attributed this to the new shampoo and conditioner I purchased. I always use salon brands, but was feeling risky and noticed a bottle of volumizing shampoo on the sale shelf at Bath and Body Works...just in time! I was almost out of shampoo. After using it for a while, my hair felt very tangled and so I picked up a bottle of Matrix conditioner.

Shortly after using the conditioner, my hair felt like it had no body what-so-ever. I was unable to give it any height. I thought maybe the conditioner was weighing it down too much, or that I was in need of a haircut.

I was complaining about this situation to my good friend, Dawn, who has also been a cosmetologist for almost 20 years, and she suggested a new styling product. This lead me to purchase a bottle of Volume Foam by Arrojo. I do love this product, but I still have bad hair days!

Lately, humidity has recently been not-so-great, so perhaps that has something to do with my not-so-glamorous hair days.

That gives me H squared (Haircut and Humidity) and I realize it could be none of the above but HORMONES! (H to the third power!) Perhaps this baby is making me have flat hair!

So whether or not it's that I am in need of a Haircut, or the Humidity in the air, or my Hormones, I want it all to stop, and hope that the easiest fix (a haircut) solves all my problems when I go for an appointment in a week.

September 01, 2009

It Moves - Pregnancy Update #21

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

While laying in bed on a Wednesday night, I can feel and see my belly moving. I tell my husband to put his hand on my stomach and wait. Of course, nothing happens, so he removes his hand. In no time, there is more movement, and I tell him to place his hand on my belly again. And in a few moments, he felt his baby move.

I'm not sure he was too into it, but it's moving, he felt it and I've just documented it! One accomplishment down...hundreds to go!