Monday, December 27, 2010

December 27th...

One day before my due date. Two days after Christmas. Four days before New Year's Eve and the end to 2010.

Christmas was a blast this year. It was seriously the most amazing Christmas to date, and I'm sure with each passing year they will continue to be even more amazing.
She's what made it so amazing...

He did, too...

And a whole host of family...but we'd all agree...

She made the day!

We're getting back into the swing of everyday life. Micah returned to work today and left Hannah and I at home to relax and veg. We hung out on the couch all morning, snacking on Cheez it's and leftover pizza while enjoying Toy Story and Mickey Mouse Clubhouse. She took an occasional break from the relaxin' to play with a few of her new toys.
She's my girl. I've been having contractions on and off all morning (what else is new, really?!) and she's stuck by my side...patting my belly and saying "Baby" followed by a whole lot of words that I don't understand.
She learned to say "What" today, too. Cutest. Thing. Ever! She's been putting that word before pretty much every word she says. So at lunch, our conversation went something like this:
"What Daddol" (apple)
"What hoose" (horse)
"What staw" (straw)
"What tee" (tree)
Adorable. She'll only be this little once, you know. And so I'm enjoying every minute of her. She's my baby girl who is growing up so big. She'll be a big sister any day now, and I know she'll take on the job like nobody's business...and she'll rock it out, because that's how she takes on any job she's given.
She's awesome, and I just love her so.

I'll end with that. I'm contracting and miserable and praying with everything I've got that this baby decides that today is the day. It is December 27th, you know. Sounds like a nice day to be born to me!

Friday, December 24, 2010

It's Christmas here

Ahhhh. As I sat in my new dining room this morning, sipping a cup of coffee out of my Eeyore mug, I realized how blessed we are this Christmas.
What looked bleak and like we had no hope turned into a wonderful thing. Yes, we are enjoying our new home, and there is so much to enjoy here.
Our move was trying. Most of our help canceled on us last minute, most likely due to the short notice we were able to provide. Last Saturday, Micah, my Dad, my brother, my Mom, and two close family friends moved all of our belongings from our little house to our new house. It was a long two days, as we continued to move into Sunday evening.
After the exhaustion wore away, we started unpacking and planning the set up of each room in our new home. Although our two spare bedrooms upstairs are packed with things that haven't found a home yet, our family, living, dining rooms and kitchen are beginning to look quite settled. Our bedroom, as well as Hannah's, are pretty much put together and looking quite perfect to me.
There is a lot of things we want to do here to make it our own. But even as I look around and take mental notes of the things that we'd like to work on, I can't believe how much this place feels like home. And it did from the first night we stayed here. It is perfect.
I thought I'd be very emotional about locking the doors on our old house...we'd spent our first five years of marriage there. We brought our first baby home there. Hannah took her first steps there. We have so many good memories. But I have to say that when we had our final goodbye, I was ready to lock the door behind me and not look back. I'm ready for new things. Ready to move forward and start fresh in a new house where we can make new memories. Where our new baby will take her first steps. Where Hannah will also experience many firsts. This is our new family home. And I am so well pleased. We are very blessed.

And it's Christmas...and we have snow on the ground, and a light snow continues to fall. It's beautiful. I can't remember the last time we've had a true White Christmas! I'm so excited!
This Christmas is going to be special. I know it. Our Hannah is in LOVE with our tree and can name the bulbs, bells, pine cones, and apples that are hung on it. She points out the "tar" (star) and tells us about the "tee" daily. I put the presents out today, and she's very intrigued by the colorful boxes and bows. Tomorrow morning is going to be amazing. And the best part? We can drive 30 seconds down the road to my Mom's for presents and Christmas morning breakfast tomorrow!
In baby news, there isn't any. Baby #2 has decided to remain cozy and warm through the holidays. Contractions have stopped, and I've experienced little more than a Braxton Hicks over the last few days. I suppose she is waiting until after Christmas. Although I wanted her here for the holidays, I'm glad that (as of right now!) I will be home tomorrow with my baby to watch her enjoy her second Christmas.
Oh, life is so sweet!

I've been seriously slacking on the picture taking the last few days, as my camera has been in forty-seven different places in both my new house and my Mom's. The battery is half-dead and I've been afraid to use it and forget to recharge in the event our baby decides to make her grand debut. I don't want to be without a camera!
I think I'll scurry around the house here in a few and grab a few quick shots of the tree and some of our new favorite spots in our new home.
Enjoy, and have a Blessed Christmas!

P.S. There is more time here...

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Good morning, world.

I'm up too early again...was up at 3:00am to be exact. And although I fell back to sleep for a few more minutes after that, my sleep was light and my head felt fuzzy...even in my dreams.
It's finally happened. We did finally hear back about our new loan application for our new house, and although it was not good news and definetly not what we expected to hear, we have found a way to make it work.
Since our current home is gone, like, needs to be completely vacant by next Wednesday, we are moving in today. We found this out at 4pm yesterday afternoon.
So last night, we bundled Hannah and headed to the new house to scour and scrub in preparation for all of our belongings to arrive today.
Let me tell you. This house needs a good cleanin'. Not sure how anyone allows a house to get quite this, well, dirty.
After a few buckets of murphy's oil soap and some comet, the kitchen cabinets, sink, and countertops are clean. Dad vaccumed the whole house, and we plan to wash walls, clean bathrooms, scrub floors, and all the like today.
The moving truck arrives at noon, but we have to wait until 3:00 when my Dad and Micah get off of work to start loading it.
Yikes. No wonder I'm up this early.
I love that I'm pregnant right now. That I'm due in 10 days. Doesn't make it so easy to clean a 2,000 square foot home, though.
So, anywho, that's the story.

It even looks as though I may be able to put my Christmas tree up this evening...and possibly decorate it tomorrow. There is hope, afterall.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Speechless...well, not quite.

So it's December 16th. And we're not moving. It's early. And I can't sleep. Ugh.

Yesterday proved to be yet another topper to what I thought couldn't possibly get more stressful. I'm not re-hashing it on here for the sake of my own sanity and for anyone reading that's just heard enough about our crazy move...or lack there-of.

I'm a planner. I like to be given an "assignment", even if I'm the one doing the assigning, and then get it done. I don't like to let things pile up on my to-do list.

I'm a perfectionist. Things need to be done up to my standards. Although this side of me has started to diminish a bit since bringing Hannah home from the hospital, it's still there. And it awakens just a tad more when I'm in a situation that allows me absolutely NO control.

Our mortgage paperwork is still residing on a woman named Margaret's desk. It's untouched. Since Friday. It's Thursday. I've been told repeatedly to pray that she has a good cup of coffee in the morning and had a wonderful evening with her family. Really?! So that's how it's decided who gets approved for a mortgage and who doesn't? Come on.

And back to some other topic. So, here I sit on my comfy couch, once again curled up with my blanket. It's still dark outside, and it's quiet. No one is awake yet, and so my thoughts ring loudly in my head. I won't go into that, because I'm sure by now you know what those thoughts consist of.

I'm 38 weeks and 3 days pregnant today. Baby is still movin' and shakin' and apparently enjoying her time in her warm cocoon. I've had contractions on and off the last few days and we're all just waiting for the real thing. Any time now!

Since I don't have much else to say unless I begin babbling about our mortgage situation which I absolutely can not control, I'll leave you with a picture of my sweet girl.

I hear a baby stirring upstairs.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

It's What's Up...

Not too much going on at the home front. We're STILL waiting for a closing date. Can you believe it?! I now have utilities for two homes in my name, plus, upon calling my insurance company today, I found out they had cancelled the plan on my current home (that I'm still residing in!) and moved our plan to the new house. Yikes! After several phone calls, I think I have all of that straightened out, but still no news on whether or not we're moving Thursday. It would so help if someone could just give me an idea. This week, next week, early January, next December?! I mean, come on.

To keep my mind off of the constant stress that is wreaking havoc on my family, I've been surfin' the web.
Today I've discovered a new message board on TheBump for photography. Score! I've been "lurking" and posting there most of the morning in between lunch and reruns of Mickey Mouse Clubhouse...oh, and amidst dealing with Hannah's constant meltdowns today. I think if I weren't pregnant, I'd be banging my head on the nearest wall until I passed out. It'd give me a few minutes of peace and quiet! Just kidding. I'm not that self-destructive!
Right now, we're watching a Mickey, then it's nap time. While Hannah's napping, I think I'm going to either catch up on my baby afghan that is still nowhere near being finished, or start studying the 12 week tutorial that everyone on the photography message board is doing. I actually found the tutorial months ago and made it through the first two weeks. I'm hoping that if I "check-in" on the board, I'll feel somewhat accountable to someone and finish the entire 12-week assignment.
I feel like I'm running out of time in every area of my life. Everything has been put on hold here in preparation for the move. I am increasingly agitated that we still have no more information than we did six weeks ago. Everything is on hold here (my sewing projects, photography, cooking, baking, even cleaning, yet time continues to march on and I'm losing days that I could be spending being productive.
If this is not the hardest time in my life to be trying to move, I don't know what would be. I have such a desire to ready the house for the baby, and I can't even do that right now. What makes it worse is that we are completely at the mercy of everyone else involved. The government, our lender, the underwriters, etc. That in itself is too much for me to deal with. I've said it several times over the last few weeks and I still mean it: I will not be moving out of this next house for a very, VERY long time.
To continue on with my ramblings, I'm 38 weeks pregnant today! Only two more weeks until my actual due date...I'm planning to not make it that far. My guess would be that she'll arrive sometime later in the week. I'm going by Hannah being a week early. I know that means nothing this time around, but it gives me some hope that the end is near!
With Hannah, I couldn't wait for her to be born! I was so over being pregnant. I was swollen, uncomfortable, cranky...did I mention I was swollen? I never knew then that I'd miss being pregnant, and much sooner than when most women probably start.
These last few days I've been cherishing every hiccup, movement. I want to remember everything. I'm living in the moment with this big, round belly. Although I can't wait to meet her, I want to savor her time with just me, even if it's just a few more days.
The anticipation of her birth is the only thing that's keeping me sane in this whole moving process. I have something so awesome to look forward keeps me going.
And I'm finally coming to terms with not having a Christmas tree this year. It's been really bothering me the last few weeks. The truth of the matter is, we don't know which house we'll be in for Christmas, or how many days before Christmas we'll know. What's the purpose of putting a tree up here and then having the possibility of getting a phone call tomorrow telling us we're cleared to close this week? As far as putting one up in the new house, again, what's the point?
Depending on when we move, we may be within a day or two of Christmas. More than likely I'll be in the hospital or just a day or two out. I'm definitely not going to feel like decorating a tree. I wouldn't put that on Micah, either. With the long hours he works, plus the added stress of getting the house in order without my help, and having probably sole responsibility for Hannah's care when he's home...I just can't do it.
We're in for a lot of change here. I'm just not sure when it's all going to come about.
For right now, I'm curled up on the couch (as best I can with this belly) with a blanket. I have plans to study photography, but whether or not that actually becomes reality is anyone's guess. I'm flyin' by the seat of my pants today.

Friday, December 10, 2010

Lazy Friday.

Outside, it looks like this:

So we are staying inside and making this:

Muddy Buddies!

Apparently, Hannah loves them! Score! Oftentimes, we are warring against hunger strikes from this child, so I was thrilled when she ate one and asked for more. No worries, this was not her lunch, or breakfast. We managed to eat a granola bar this morning. Still not sure what I'm making for lunch as our cupboards are pretty bare.
Although the snow is beautiful and very Christmasy, I'm a little irritated that I'm now stuck inside for the day. I still have a few last minute Christmas gifts to buy, and I'm running out of time. Between the big move next week (at least out of this house...still not sure exactly when we'll be moving into the new one) and my due date fast approaching, I want to make sure I get all of my Christmas shopping tied up soon!
For the time being, though, we're just lounging around the house lazily. Some of us are still in our PJ's...and we like it that way!

Hannah and I are hanging out on the couch under a blanket awaiting Micah's arrival home from work. Tonight should be one needs to be outside digging up pipes in the front yard, so we can enjoy our time together. This weekend, we have plans to tie up all the loose ends of packing. All the little stuff is done, all we need to do is organize, then wait for the truck to pull in on Tuesday to start loading everything in. Oh the joys of moving.
I'm so hoping I will have a "We've Moved" post next Friday...and not that we've moved in with my parents, but that we've moved into our new home. Who'd have thought that less than a week before the closing on our house we'd still be waiting for an answer on the new one.
Once again...BIG GOVERNMENT=BIG FAIL. Yikes.

Well, for those of you who are also experiencing snow, stay warm and dry by the fire this weekend! Only 14 more days until Christmas Eve!

Thursday, December 9, 2010

This is NOT what I signed up for!

Along with all of the excitement and anticipation of moving, there is also the unexpected nonsense that finds its way into the situation.
We are exactly one week away from closing-if everything continues to move along the way it has been-and things continue to pop up that require our attention and our checkbook.
We had a dye test scheduled for this week, and on schedule, three men from the township showed up with three trucks, tons of equipment, and cones to block the road. It was quite the production. In case you were wondering, a dye test checks to assure that none of the water from our downspouts, french drains, etc. run into their sewer lines. We were very confident that our home would pass, as everyone we've talked to has never heard of a house not passing.
Micah kept on the men working, asking questions about what they were finding, throughout the entire four and a half (yes, I'm serious. It really took that long.)hour test. At the beginning, one of the men casually remarked that he didn't see a problem. When the test was over, no one would give an answer as to the findings. We both became a little worried, but the reassurance from numerous home buyers that we know made us feel a little more at ease.
Sure enough, when Micah called the next morning, our township informed us that we did in fact FAIL the test. Unbelievable.
Unbeknown st to me, Micah spent a better part of his day off yesterday calling for estimates (that were upwards of $1000+) and suggestions. When I came home from work yesterday, he filled me in. I, true to self, lost it.
I lost it to the point of hyperventilating. Hello hormones.
To make a long story short, our wonderful neighbors that we will miss dearly happened to get home shortly after my meltdown. I have a fabulous memory (ask anyone!) and had remembered a conversation with them regarding our township requiring everyone on our street to update sewer lines on the properties at the homeowners expense. Mind you, this occurred several years ago, but PVC piping has a VERY long life expectancy.
Micah started digging up the front yard (yes, we are making quite the mess here) around 7:30 last night and what did he find?! PVC piping in the ground and the culprit as to why we failed our dye test.
Our pipe is not cracked, our pipe is not leaking water into the main sewer. The pipe is cut too low below ground level, thus allowing the multiple gallons of water they pumped into the yard to get into this sewer line, therefore allowing the dye into the sewer.
You'd think this would be plenty of proof for the township, but unfortunately, we have to pay another $125 for them to re-do the test. I am furious with them and may take my ever-expanding girth to the township building and have a firm, hormone-led talk with the men in charge of this sad excuse to take more of my money.
Can I tell you that I can't wait to move to a new town?! Really.
In other news, our mortgage broker says he is "hopeful" that we can close on our new house on December 16th. FINALLY someone is hopeful! We are turning in the last of our required paperwork today and are praying that we don't need to give anymore. I think they've pretty much asked for everything but our firstborn...and I'm keeping her! Who would've thought it would be this difficult to get a mortgage when 1. I've had one for the last five years 2. Have excellent credit and very little debt 3. Have the income necessary to qualify for a mortgage of this amount. There's big government for you. BAD idea. Maybe I should personally call Barack Obama and ask him what else I could possibly have to do for me to be approved for a loan. Think he'd answer his phone?! ;)

On a lighter, more upbeat, positive, not-so-stressful, non-house related note: I had my 37 week check up today! Baby is guesstimated to weigh right around six pounds, is extremely low, head down, and ready for her grand debut! I'm still shootin' for the 19th or 20th! I've been telling her all week that she has to wait until then! It worked with Hannah!
I think I'll have to end there. I do have pictures to upload, but frankly, I've been too lazy and stressed out. It is very possible that there will be no pictures until after the baby arrives. :/

Monday, December 6, 2010

Sneaking in a Quick Post...

Micah has been busy studying/paper-writing/researching for the final few days of his class, so I've been "banned" from computer usage the last few nights while he scurries to tie up lose ends. Thankfully, this class ends tonight and he begins a new one tomorrow. I'm so hopeful that this next class will come with a lighter workload and a more enjoyable topic for him.
I'm so proud of him! Working LONG hours at the office, taking care of the house, packing, AND working toward his degree. Pretty impressive! I know I couldn't do it...although I'd LOVE to take some classes on photography.
We're all still hanging on here. Closing on this house remains the 16th, and supposedly I'll hear something tomorrow from our lender about a closing date on the new house. I can't wait to live without piles of boxes in every room!
We drove past our new house four times yesterday. It's embarrassing, I know. I can't help myself. We had to run home to get the pressure cooker for my Mom to make dinner, then headed to the craft store for some yarn, (I just started working on an afghan for the new baby...not sure it'll be finished in time!)then headed home...and all of those trips either began or concluded (or, ahem, both) with us driving slowly, and probably creepily, past our new home. I'm sure our neighbors-to-be think we're prowling the neighborhood!

Well, tomorrow marks the 37 week mark of this pregnancy! I'm so thrilled that I've made it to full term. I'm hoping to hold out for at least another week, so I'm sure she's fully "cooked". <- I hate when people say that, now I'm saying it.
She's been jamming her butt/feet into the right side of my ribcage all day. When it gets to this point and we're both wrestling for space, it's time. I can't wait to meet her!

In other news, my parents put their Christmas decorations up yesterday with the "help" of Hannah. I'm a little concerned as to how we're going to keep our tree decorated when we move and put it up. Hannah has quite the fascination with the bulbs...or as she calls them "dolls". She repeatedly undecorated the bottom of the tree and even managed to pull a glass bulb apart where the bulb meets the hook.
Luckily, we caught her before there were any boo-boos.
I got some cute pictures, but I'll have to post them tomorrow when Hannah naps. Mickey Mouse Clubhouse is ending, it's bathtime, and it's getting late.
Stay tuned, and stay warm! We're expecting 1-4 inches tonight with a windchill of 12*. Winter, anyone?!

Thursday, December 2, 2010

And a few pictures...

In the name of all things random, I'm uploading some pictures to spice up my blog. Enjoy!

Looking out the kitchen window

My crazy-haired girl

Awesome gifts from my suprise baby shower at work

Check out her ponytail!

We're moving!

Awesome generosity...and a ton of static cling.

Yesterday was the 1st of December, which means I'll most likely be having a baby THIS month! It was my first day back to work after Thanksgiving break, and I was feeling pretty good, despite the ever-increasing pressure that baby Sarah puts on my cervix.
Making my lunch for the day, I happened to glance out the kitchen window to find an inch of snow had descended on our neighborhood throughout the night. It was the pretty kind of snow. The kind that gets stuck beautifully on every tree branch and wire. Although it was just the 1st day of December, we had ourselves quite the winter wonderland!
So, I bundled up the belly as best I could with a non-maternity pea coat and set off for the school.
I soaked in the sights on the drive there, admiring God's creation covered in a blanket of heavenly white fluff...and I may have searched the radio for a Christmas song...or two...or three. It felt good to have made it this far into the pregnancy after our little scare a few weeks back. Baby is still cookin', and that means she's continuing to grow and be nourished in the best possible place for her.
When I got to school, I settled into my desk, went over the paperwork that had found it's way there, and prepared for my classes.
Stacey, the PT I work with began filling me in on the events of Tuesday, as all of the students and staff returned back to work then. She told me that new equipment had arrived and that I needed to look it over.
New equipment? For who? I was totally confused. She led me to the storage room, then redirected me to the planning center and shoved me in...where I found 22 of my coworkers seated around the big table which had been covered in a pink tablecloth, streamers, and baby confetti.
Overwhelmed? Yes. I almost cried, but pulled myself together rather quickly to take it all in. There was cake, cupcakes, chocolate favors from Rosalind's candy castle (of all places!), and pink and white M & M's...and gifts. They bought me gifts...
When I say I have the absolute best coworkers in the world, it's still an understatement.
I was served a piece of cake, then handed present after present, and card after card that held outfits, diapers, a new baby bouncer (because my little adventurous Hannah broke hers at the ripe age of, oh, 6 months), books, a homemade quilt that matches our girl's nursery to a tee, gift cards for Walmart and Babies R Us, a robe for me to wear in the hospital...and even a few things for the big sister.
My coworkers are awesome. I said "thank you" a million times, but it just doesn't seem to cut it. I'm still shocked at their generostiy and thoughtfulness and I don't know where to begin to thank them.
We so needed newborn diapers. With all of the snow and sleet, I've been camping out in the house and haven't had the opportunity to stock up. I have my first box and now feel at ease about welcoming our new baby at any time.
So today I'm going through all of the gifts to organize baby things into drawers. We still don't have a moving date (which is extremely frustrating when your 9 months pregnant and Christmas is just three weeks away), so I can't really hang things up in the closet just yet.
One thing I hate about this time of year? Static. Hannah's hair resembles that of Albert Einstein's despite my many attempts to tame it.
I've wet it, put it in a pony tail with multiple clips, and have been trying to keep it slicked back since. It's a disaster. And the continuous rubbing of her head on our microfiber couch doesn't make matters any better. That, combined with the mylar balloon she's become so attached to makes for a very staticy mess. If she shocks me one more time, I'm sure I can generate enough electricity to light a Christmas tree. It's a shame I can't put one up right now. Darn underwriters. Process my new mortgage loan already.
That's it for now. Maybe I'll upload some pictures tonight.