Sunday, April 28, 2013

39 Week Bump Update - Last One?

39 Weeks Pregnant
Will this be the last bump update?? My guess is yes. Joe's getting pretty impatient too. Every work day for the past week he's texted me: "Ezzy here yet?" 

Symptoms: Most of the pain from two weeks ago finally went away. I've been having some cramping and a few contractions, but nothing has stuck. Also, as you may be able to tell from the above photo, my feet are swollen to Fred Flintstone proportions. 
Best Moment of the Week: I'm really happy with how the house is coming together. Ezzy's nursery is done. I think I'm down to one box of random stuff that needs to be unpacked. We also hung up the majority of our pictures, and my closet is organized. The place officially feels like home.  
What We're Reading & Watching this Week: We've already gone through two seasons of Game of Thrones. LOVE that show. We also took a trip down memory lane and watched Willow earlier this week. 
Food Cravings: Some of my first trimester cravings have reappeared: tuna sandwiches with cheetos, cereal, toast with jam, and ice. We also had some Violet's Cupcakes today.  
Exercise: We're trying to walk this baby out. So far no luck, but it's bound to work one of these days ;) 
What I Miss: I miss most of my shoes. Will my feet ever shrink back to their normal size? Sadly, says they may not. And while we're on the subject, I miss most of my clothes too. 
Happy or Moody? Both.
Movement: He's still as active as ever.  
Looking Forward to: Meeting Ezra! The doctor told me last week that he's a "good sized" baby - she estimated 7 lbs at the time. She also said my cervix has softened and I'm a tiny bit dilated. Her prediction is that he'll be on time or a little bit early. I hope she's right!

Saturday, April 27, 2013

Nursery Tour: Balloons & Giraffes

Ezzy's nursery is done! Actually, it was done last week, but it took me awhile to get some decent pictures. Almost everything in his room was a gift, and my original theme, which was hot air balloons, eventually branched out into including all kinds of balloons, and plenty of giraffes and elephants too. I'm really happy with how it's turned out, and so far it's the nicest room in the house. He's the only one with brand new furniture and homemade decorations and blankets thanks to our crafty friends.    

The Ezra balloon wall-hangings were handmade by Jen, and the balloon and circus animals mobile was from Ikea. All of the blankets hanging on his crib were handmade. The sleeping giraffe which plays melodies was a gift from Grandma Kathleen, and the elephant humidifier was a gift from our friends Stephen and Leigh. 

View from the entrance

The hot air balloons were a gift from Jessica, which we originally used as baby shower decorations. Love how they look hanging up next to the hot air balloon curtains which Zshnette and her grandma made for us. There's a little Winnie the Pooh floating in the red one, a gift from work. 

Jennifer made the Ezra box, which I'm using to store his receiving blankets and burp cloths. Most of those books were mine, or gifts, and the piggy bank and silver baby cup were baby shower gifts as well. 

Ezzy is already stocked on toys! (Although I admit, half those stuffed animals are mine.) The cute world suitcase was a gift from Jessica from Michaels and is holding all of Ezra's 2013 Time Capsule goodies. The floating globe is Joseph's. And the yellow owl nightlight was from Target. 

The cute little monkey bouncer was a gift from my cousin, and the chair was given to us by my aunt. Most of the blankets and the pillow were handmade. 

The wooden wall decorations were a gift from Grandma Tracie. The giraffe print was actually a gift bag from Target that I framed. And the photos are all from our maternity photo shoot when I was a lil over eight months pregnant.

And in case you were wondering what James thinks of the room, he seems to like it. Or, at least, he makes his daily rounds to make sure everything's in place and accounted for.

 Joe has decided James is his dance partner. I'm sure you can guess by James' expression how thrilled he is by their new hobby.

Sunday, April 21, 2013

Baby Shower #3 (Last One, I Promise!)


In case you missed my other baby shower post, Baby Shower #1 was a surprise from work, and Baby Shower #2 was in Modesto with my mom's side of the family and some of my dearest, oldest childhood friends. Baby shower #3 was co-ed and held at our house for all of the So Cal friends and family. The theme was balloons/hot air balloons, and I wish I had some better pictures of the cute hot air balloons Jessica got for the event. However, they'll make an appearance in Ezra's nursery, so you'll see some pics shortly.

Hot Air Balloon Cookies

For food we had a delicious giant smorgasboard. Millie took care of all the meat eaters with some fried chicken, potato salad, and sandwiches, as well as the adorable cake above. Grandma Kathleen brought her delicious homemade mac & cheese. And we had tons of cupcakes, chips, dips, fruits, veggies, and candy. For party favors, I made hot air balloon cookies using my mom's sugar cookie recipe. Yummy!

Guests wrote Ezra messages on this adorable handmade guest sign-in. The giraffe was cut out from a gift bag from the 99 Cent Store. The sun and clouds stickers were also from the 99 Cent Store. And Millie diligently cut out all the balloons from construction paper. I LOVE the end result, and you'll also see its reappearance in Ezra's nursery.

Jessica came up with the great idea for a 2013 time capsule. She got the vintage-looking map-themed suitcase from Michaels and we asked guests to bring something iconic from 2013 when we sent out the invitations. We haven't quite decided when he will open it. I'm thinking that by 2023, when he's ten, he should be old enough to appreciate the time capsule. Some of the contents include: baseball stats, the 2013 Farmer's Almanac, several issues of prominent magazines, a deck of Kardashian playing cards (wonder if they'll still be famous in a decade!), and some Star Wars toys to represent Ezra's due date: May the 4th (aka - Star Wars Day). I love it all, and many thanks for your originality to everyone who participated!

One of my other favorite aspects of the shower was the "Photo Booth" we had set up. For a backdrop we used the homemade balloon Ezra decorations that Jen made and gifted to me at my Modesto baby shower. We also set up my camera on self-timer, and set up a small white board and some pens and encouraged guests to write a message for Ezra. I can't wait to print them out and include them in his baby book (another maternity leave project I plan on getting around to in the coming days). Check out the cute decorations and thoughtful/funny messages below:

Grandma Kathleen

Jessica - Party Planner Extraordinaire!

Great Aunt Linda

Cousins Luana & Logan

Millie - My Other Expert Party Planner!

Uncle Nev

Rhoda, Ricardo, & Co.

The Serna Family

The Parents-to-be!
Again, I'm amazed by the craftiness and generosity of our friends and family. Ezra received some beautiful handmade quilts and blankets, and a customized onesie. He also received tons of cute toys and books, and practically an entire wardrobe for the next year. I also got a boppy nursing pillow which I'm really excited about; everyone who has had one raves about them. Check out how spoiled that lil guy is, and he hasn't even made an appearance yet!

Friday, April 19, 2013

What A Typical Date Night Looks Like When You're 8+ Months Pregnant..

Yup, that's me browsing at Target on our weekly date night. The last time I posted any type of date activity was in early March, when we went hiking. I thought my fitness levels were at an all-time low when I was barely able to make it a mile up the mountain that day, but now that I can barely make it through the baby aisles at Target before my back starts aching I realize I was doing pretty well for a 7 months pregnant lady on that hike.

Beginning in March, all of our date nights have centered around baby care and birthing classes, or moving, packing, unpacking, and assembling furniture. The typical exciting soon-to-be new parents kind of stuff you'd expect.

Now that we're only 15 days away from Ezzy's due date I'm officially in my nesting phase. During last night's "date" we bought the last few remaining things on our registry, as well as some clothes and toys that I just couldn't resist. In case you were wondering what $500 worth of baby stuff from Target looks like, here you go:

It's surprisingly not that much stuff. The bulk of the budget went toward the Graco Fastaction Fold Classic Connect Travel System. Earlier this week I spent the better part of a day researching online to make sure the car seat and stroller I had originally registered for were compatible with each other. Turns out my stroller was compatible with click connect Graco car seats, but not with the classic connect model I'd gotten. Whoops. That led to more internet research, and I was drawn to the Graco Fastaction for its promise of folding up with one hand in one second. I'll let you know once it's put together if it's as easy as it promises.

After working up an appetite at Target, we tried out Max's Mexican Cuisine across the street:

Gooey, Cheesy Yumminess
And then we went home and played Family Feud. At least we won't be missing out on the wild and crazy nightlife that we never had once Ezzy gets here ;)

And because I'm sure you've been wondering what Mr. James Bond has been up to, here you go:

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Baby Showers #1 & #2 (Yes, We're Spoiled...)

About two and a half weeks ago, work threw me a surprise baby shower. You may remember the video of me walking into the conference room and turning bright red with surprise, before turning around and looking like I was either going to flee or kill Joe (posted here). But I promise I wasn't mad, just completely shocked (in a good way). Everyone at work was so sweet and generous, HR did an amazing job of planning and keeping everything a secret, and the bosses are super excited about the first work baby (besides their own).

Baby shower #2  was in Modesto, courtesy of my mom and two of my oldest and dearest friends - Zshnette and Jen. Joe and I drove up there after work on Friday. Aside from a little GPS incident, where I was unable to make my phone work in time to locate a Starbucks until half a mile past the last Starbucks in civilization (aka - right before a 40 mile-long black hole known as the Grapevine), the rest of the drive went pretty smoothly.

On Saturday, Joe dropped me off with my family while he went to visit with his Grandfather. The baby shower was at Chevy's (one of my fave restaurants) and everything was absolutely perfect. There was cake AND seven different kinds of cupcakes (thanks Zshnette!), which is a pregnant woman's heaven. There were a lot of fun games, including a hilarious mad libs version of Ezra's birth. Apparently I'm going to be in labor for 25 hours before giving birth to a fluffy 15 lb, 2 inch long baby with soft knuckles and 18 fingers and toes. He will have my big toe, and Joe's knee.

I had so much fun, and thanks to everyone who came with special thanks to the planners. I love all of you and feel so blessed to have you in mine and Ezra's lives.

Highlights of the trip included:
  • Seeing my family and friends one last time before I pop.
  • Finding out during the "Guess How Big My Belly Is" game that I'm actually only half the size I think I am.
  • Spending time with Joe and my family.
  • Joe getting to see his grandfather.
  • Eating my weight in cake and cupcakes. 
  • Finding out how crafty many of my friends and family are. Ezzy got a ton of homemade gifts, including baby decor and blankets - more pics on that when I finish his nursery. Actually, Ezzy got a ton of adorable and generous gifts in general - that spoiled lil guy! Many thanks to everyone! Can't wait to dress him up, decorate his nursery, and play with him using all his new loot. Love you!
Coming soon: Baby Shower #3 (I told you we're spoiled!), our maternity photo shoot, and Ezzy's nursery tour.

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

37 Weeks Bump Update

37 Weeks Pregnant
Sorry I've been MIA for the past two weeks. Nope, it's not because I went into labor. I've been busy wrapping up last minute projects at work, trying to get everything unpacked at the new place (still working on that one), assembling furniture (still working on this one as well), and having not one, but two baby showers! (More on the showers later.) A lot of people have said the last month passes slowly, and maternity leave will get boring, but so far we've been so busy that I haven't had a chance to be bored. Note to future self: get everything done before the eight month mark, and spend the last month hibernating on the couch with your swollen feet propped up.

This week Ezra is officially full term, so he can decide to come out at any time and nobody will try to stop him.

Symptoms: Lower back pain and neck/shoulder pain. Plus one of my ribs feels fractured or pushed out of place. I'm pretty sure Ezzy kicked it aside to make more room for his 6+ pound self.
Best Moment of the Week: I've had two showers in the last two weeks and it's amazing to see how many people love this little guy already.
What We're Reading & Watching this Week: We've moved on from the Walking Dead to Game of Thrones. It's such a good series, we watched all of Season 1 last week and we're already onto Season 2. What I should be reading: What to Expect the First Year. At this rate Ezzy will be walking by the time I get around to reading it.
Food Cravings: I've had so many cupcakes and cake and cookies this past week. Ezzy is going to come out topped with frosting and sprinkles.
Exercise: Just walking through Target feels like a workout. We did a maternity photo shoot at the arboretum on Sunday, which involved a lot of walking, and then Joe and I planned on eating lunch at the mall and then walking around for a bit, but my back gave up after one store. Instead we went home and I took a two hour nap to make up for all that physical exertion.
What I Miss: Everyone says I will miss pregnancy, and that may be true. But I won't miss the back pain, the rib cage pain, or feeling heavy and swollen and out of breath. I'm ready for Ezzy to be on the outside. Well, physically I'm ready. In reality there's still a ton of stuff that needs to get done before he gets here.
Happy or Moody? Both.
Movement: As soon as I sit down, and especially after I eat, he likes to do a round of jumping jacks.
Looking Forward to: Crossing off what's left on my maternity leave to-do list. Also, I'm excited to see the pictures from our maternity photo shoot. We got a lot of great shots, but Jerome is an amazing editor, so I'm sure they'll look even better once he's done with them.

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Happy April! (a day late)

If you couldn't tell from the past few posts, March was a crazy busy, but productive month. We crossed a ton of stuff off our to-do list:

1) Find a place to live & move: Our criteria was 2 bedrooms, 2 baths, and no upstairs or downstairs neighbors. We got lucky and managed to find a place that was all of those things AND just a few miles from work. It also took us the better part of a month to move all of our stuff from the old place to the new place. As of last Saturday, we are officially moved out of LA and into what will be Ezzy's first home. Yay! Added bonus: James gets to explore outside again, and he's a much happier kitty because of it. He still hisses at Joe, but I think it's just out of habit. He also lets Joe pick him up and will sit there relaxed and purring while Joe pets him.

2) Birth & Baby Care Classes: We crammed in 7 classes throughout March, covering everything from pain management techniques, to C-sections, comforting a crying baby, breast feeding, and much, much more. As far as the Lamaze portion of the class goes, the teacher basically said that everyone experiences labor differently, and responds to pain differently, so there's no way to really prepare for it. That's not a huge comfort, but nothing too unexpected there. My favorite classes were the pain management techniques - which included the dads massaging the moms with various types of massagers (see above pic) and the Happiest Baby on the Block class. I think we're much more prepared to deal with a screaming baby now that we know the 5 S's. Joe seemed to like the breastfeeding class. Actually, all the guys in that class seemed to be more enthralled than usual. I was already planning on breastfeeding, but once she mentioned that you can easily spend $3,000 a year on formula, I was sold. Ezzy needs a job if he wants formula! (kidding...)

Our new Bookshelf - the entire hallway was filled with books

Assembling Ezzy's Dresser - next step is organizing his room

3) Maternity Leave to-do List: I made a list of stuff to take care of when I go on maternity leave (just 3.5 more work days!) and I've already gotten a head start at crossing a few things off:
  • Assemble Ezzy's Dresser
  • Find a Pediatrician
  • Fill out paid family leave paperwork
  • Assemble Changing Table
  • Assemble Crib
  • Wash Baby Clothes (done for now, but I'm sure there will be more loads after the baby showers. Yay!)
  • Pack hospital bag (any tips on what to bring are MUCH appreciated!)
  • Find a cheap bookshelf
  • Create some DIY decorations: find inspiration here
  • Read What to Expect the 1st Year
  • Finish organizing the house (not sure if this will ever be "finished" - but getting all the boxes unpacked is the main goal)
Of the stuff that's still on the list, I think the pediatrician and hospital bag are top priority. The rest I'll get around to...eventually ;)

So that was March, in a nutshell. There was also lots of fun moments sprinkled in there, along with quite a few naps. It seems like there's still so much to do, but finding Ezzy's first home was a huge relief. I think (hope) everything else will fall into place because there's only 33 days until Ezzy's expected arrival. Crazy!