Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Differences in Pregnancies

So as in everything, I am discovering that things are not the same the second time around. As this will be a different child with a different personality, I guess it shouldn't surprise me that the pregnancy is different as well.

A main difference happened this weekend on Saturday evening amongst all of the company craze. I am roughly 22 1/2 weeks pregnant, and I began to have Braxton-Hicks contractions that were noticeable. This is definitely a little earlier than with the first one, and frankly surprised me. I ended up calling my OB-GYN on Sunday to talk about what had happened, and if I needed to be concerned. As they went away, all is fine. But it was a wake up call to the fact that some things need to change due to my pregnancy. So I took it as a reason to slow down a little bit, put my feet up, and begin having Madi become a little more independent.

So the home repairs need to slow down a little, and some of the "heavier" work needs to be done by Josh. By heavier, I mean vacuuming the stairs and carrying my scrapbook stuff down to our newly finished family room. It is hard for me to slow down, especially as I have lots of things I'd like to finish before our baby boy makes his appearance in July. But all in good time. I'm taking it one step and one feet propping at a time.

Monday, March 30, 2009

Next Book

The next book I will be reading is "The Way of the Pilgrim" Translated by R.M. French. I wasn't sure what I'd be reading, so that was why I delayed in telling you.

Also, this weekend went well! The bathroom was not finished. The toilet (with a slight leak) and shower worked, but we had some problems with the sink. The old plumbing started leaking once we installed the sink and the toilet, so that will need to be replaced before they are finished. We also did not get the door on, but we had a curtain up to act as a door. I'll post pictures soon. We had thirteen people here (10 adults, 3 kids) for lunch and dinner Saturday, and five people spending the night on Friday and Saturday. And I must admit that everything went smoothly. I never felt the stress of preparation that sometimes happens with company. And it was great to visit with everyone.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Book # 14: Close to Home

One Orthodox mother's quest for patience, peace, and perseverance
By Molly Sabourin

Since discovering Ancient Faith Radio, I have been a listener to the Close to Home podcasts that Molly Sabourin authors and records. I was thrilled to find that not only did she podcast and blog, but also was in the process of writing a book. This is that book that I have anticipated reading since discovering of its future release. I preordered it, and it arrived last week. As soon as I could get Baby Catcher finished, I dove into this book barely putting it down for the past few days.

Molly has a way of expressing what I have a billion times thought and struggled with. She is the mom of four compared to my one, but still she knows what challenges I face. Not only does she successfully make me feel understood and not alone, but she also provides the hope and reassurance that through Christ and His Church we can weather this storm called motherhood and rejoice in our experiences. It is one of those books that as I was reading I would mark pages that I would like to go back and revisit, reread, and internalize to help me in my daily struggle for, as the subtitle states, "patience, peace, and perseverance".

I recommend this book to any and all mothers! With Pascha and Mother's Day approaching, I am glad to have ordered not just one, but three copies. My dilemna now becomes how to divide those three books into the 20 copies I need to hand out to all the women and mothers I think would enjoy it.

A Tiled Bathroom Floor

This is the task that has caused less sleep at night, more so for Josh than for myself. Sunday night we cut and laid out the pattern. Monday night it was fixed in place. Tuesday night Josh grouted and cleaned the tiles. Thursday night Josh will seal the floor and install the toilet and pedestal sink. Friday night our guests arrive. It has truly become the last minute project due to the drying times of the mortar, the grout, and the sealer. But it will be done, perhaps the sink will just be getting put into place when our guests begin to arrive, but still it will be done.

I will post the finished project pictures sometime next week.

Monday, March 23, 2009

Late Night

Wait until you see pictures of why I was up until just a horribly late hour! I'll take them tomorrow and post them. Sorry, but my bed is calling my name, and not even you diligent readers can coax me to take them now.

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Book # 13: Baby Catcher

Chronicles of a Modern Midwife
By Peggy Vincent

This was a reread, as I read this while pregnant with Madilyn. I loved it so much that I couldn't pass up the opportunity to read it again this time around. It is a collection of stories from a California midwife. It is amazing, and brings a whole new dimension to birth. It should be mandatory for any pregnant woman to read, as it leaves you with a sense of excitement and anticipation for your own labor. Seeing all the different versions of the same miracle leaves you excited to see what your own will hold. I would also highly recommend it to anyone, not just those expecting, as it is well written and extremely entertaining. Seriously, you should read this book!

Next book:
Close to Home
by Molly Sabourin

Friday, March 20, 2009

The Joy of a Bargain

So I know that I have rattled on before about yard sales, craigslist, large garbage pick up days, and bargains in general. I just can't get enough of them, and the good deals that you can find! With the onset of spring, I have been anxiously awaiting the start of yard sales, and the prospect of climbing out of bed insanely early on a Saturday morning to rummage through other people's discards. Well, yard sale season is not here, yet, but craigslist is the yard saler's dream.

Yesterday Josh picked up a plastic tea set for $5 which will be Madi's birthday gift come August. It is adorable with a tea pot 4 saucers, 4 cups, 4 knives, 4 cookies, a creamer, and a sugar bowl. That's bargain number one!

Also yesterday, Josh and I had our ultrasound, so we are officially having a baby boy! One of the big joys of this for me is that I can satisfy my yard sale and craigslist cravings with stocking up on little boy clothing, bedding, etc. I had been scouring craigslist for some time looking at baby bedding, just, well, because. Yes, it's sort of an addiction. But I had found the cutest firetruck and car bedding about 2 to 3 weeks ago. Well, yesterday I called. It is still available! Twenty-five dollars for a crib skirt, bumper, quilt, fleece blanket, and toy truck! Woohoo! I should be picking it up today! I'll share some pictures once I get it.

Monday, March 16, 2009


Josh returned home late last night, and I cannot even begin to describe how nice it is to have him back. Not that he has been here a lot the past 24 hours, as he leaves for work around 6:30am and doesn't get home until after 5pm. But just the idea that he IS coming home has done wonders for my attitude. Josh came home to eat lunch with Madi and me (his work is under 5 minutes away), and it was so nice to have someone to talk with while Madi ate her leisurely 40 minute meal. And even though Josh was only home this evening for about 2 hours (he had a meeting at church to attend), having someone here to dance with Madi and talk and listen to me was amazing. Not that the phone calls, emails, and visits from others were not appreciated this past week, but there is something about having Josh home that makes the world seem better.

Am I being sappy? I'm sorry! I'll blame the pregnancy hormones.

Oh, we have our ultrasound on Thursday, so soon we'll know which pronouns to use when talking about my large protruding belly.

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Some Things I learned this week:

1. Primer and I do NOT get along! It is splotchy, and I lack patience.

2. Ceilings are difficult to paint, especially when your arm strength is minimal to non-existent. Thank goodness our bathroom is small.

3. Floor sealant smells like a pina colada rum punch. Yummy!

4. I am a messy painter. Alright, I already knew this one, but I had forgotten how much paint it was possible to get on your hands.

5. I have an issue with heights; and yes, I consider the two-step step stool a height. One and a half feet off the ground is WAY UP THERE!

Friday, March 13, 2009

2 Days and Counting. . .

Two days left until Josh's return, and I have a good start on my to do list:

1. Prime the entire bathroom including the ceiling and walls.
2. Paint the rest of the family room floor and the bathroom floor to seal in pet odors and smells.
3. Vacuum both floors so they are spotless and ready for the flooring to be laid when Josh gets back.
4. Pick up the decorative accent tiles from Home Depot for the bathroom floor.

Half Finished:
Paint two coats of white paint on the ceiling.

Prime & paint the bathroom door.

Book # 12: Surprised by Christ

My Journey from Judaism to Orthodox Christianity
by Rev. A. James Bernstein

Our church did this as a book club book, and I became especially intrigued after reading the book by A.J. Jacobs, The Year of Living Biblically, where he tries to live the bible as literally as possible. A.J. was raised Jewish, and so while living the New Testament literally, he visits some Christian churches. However, he never discovered or visited an Orthodox Church. So I was curious to see how James Bernstein responded to it, and how his conversion took place.

Well, I was in for more than that! James has had an astonishing life living through the Six Day War, the Civil Right's Movement, and the Jesus Movement. Not only did he dive into those events and really experience them up close and personal, but he also goes into detail on many theological matters. I would highly recommend it, as he explains everything in a way that is easy to understand, and the stories from his life make for a nice bridge between the explanations.

Next book:
Baby Catcher
by Peggy Vincent
This is a repeat read, and I can already say that I highly recommend it, as I am obviously reading it again!

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Oh, Josh also gave me permission to tear out the kitchen carpet, but thinking how comical this would look as I wield my crow bar with my large pregnant belly looming above, I think I will wait for his return!

While the boy's are away. . .

I got my girl's weekend this past weekend. Josh has a boy's work a.k.a. golfing trip starting late this evening. His Myrtle Beach trip lasts a little longer than mine, as he'll be gone through Sunday evening. Just like Josh did, Madi and I have a to-do list.

Here's what it looks like:

1. Prime the entire bathroom including the ceiling and walls.
2. Paint two coats of white paint on the ceiling.
3. Paint the rest of the family room floor and the bathroom floor to seal in pet odors and smells.
4. Prime & paint the bathroom door.
5. Vacuum both floors so they are spotless and ready for the flooring to be laid when Josh gets back.
6. Pick up the decorative accent tiles from Home Depot for the bathroom floor.

I would also like to finish the first half of Madi's first year scrapbook, so that I can start organizing the second half.

I'll let you know how things are going. I think I might enlist a grandparent at some point to watch Madilyn, so I can get all the priming and floor sealing done in one shot.

Monday, March 9, 2009

A Call to Prayer

The morning stretched on forever it seemed. My highly motivated self slowly diminished through the chores of showering, dressing both myself and Madi, preparing and eating breakfast, and cleaning up the dishes piled in the sink from the past weekend. By ten o'clock all that remained was a shell of the go-getter who had risen a few hours before. Tasks seemed to be taking twice as long as usual, and Madi continually neglected her toys and swarmed to my own leaving a trail of ribbon, socks, and makeup in her wake.

My patience empty, my temper welling, I knew that prayer would have to be a part of our day. But I stalled. We watched The Wiggles, went for a walk, filled the bird feeders, and asked Josh to come home for lunch. As I sat the lunch dishes in the sink, I knew it was now or never. Madi's nap was fast approaching, and we both needed some support, some reassurance, some rest.

As I pulled the censer, the charcoal, the incense, and the prayer book out of the cabinet, Madilyn scurried from the living room to the dining room preparing. A herd of animals formed before our icon stand. Every last sheep, rooster, cow, and horse was brought before our cross and icons to participate in the Akathist to the Mother of God.

As I chanted with the occasional "uuu-a" (Alleluia)from Madi thrown in, my restlessness, temper, and impatience evaporated. At the end, Madi practiced her "Holy God, Holy Mighty, Holy Immortal, have mercy on us." And our plastic gathering of farm animals, my little ponies, and little people looked on.

Sunday, March 8, 2009

When the girls are away. . .

This weekend was girls weekend away. So my Mom, sister, and I headed to Lititz, PA for a stay at an inn, some shopping, and leisure time. It was so nice to get away and take a break from the stresses of motherhood and the household.

Josh in a large part made this possible by understanding my need for a little "me" time before I am totally devoted to a newborn. Madi as a newborn was very demanding until about the 11 month mark, so we are both trying to prepare in case the second has a similar demanding schedule.

Well, you might be thinking that Josh slacked off on the house work since he was busy with a 19-month old, but this is not the case. Nana stepped in to watch Madi on Saturday, so that Josh could continue house renovations.

So here's the impressive update:

1. family room is fully painted!!!
2. bathroom is sanded and the second coat of spackle is applied.
3. living room (I know--how did this make it on the radar) has a few exposed nail holes filled, primed, and painted with their first coat.

Oh, and we picked out tile Friday night for the bathroom floor. So things are progressing nicely for our March 28th deadline. More updates later this week.

Friday, March 6, 2009


I never win. And I am not exaggerating. I CAN win if it is a contest involving determination and stamina, but anything that is left to chance, there is no point in hoping, as I never win. Bingo, door prizes, raffles all end with empty hands.

But this week, my luck changed. As you know, I've been reading this year, and reading without spending money, requires trips to the library. On top of that, Madi loves the library. Miss Barb is there to run Rhyme Time, and Madi loves to sing. Plus the Wiggles live there in the form of DVD's and CD's, so we are frequent visitors.

When I saw an adult reading program advertised, I entered. This is not a program based on the amount you read, but the amount of times you check out items from the library. So, I figured I had no real luck there, as I couldn't even increase my chances by buckling down and pouring over books. But every week, when we would go to the library, I was sure to check out something, and this week I got an email that I had won the first prize drawing for that week. What did I win you might ask?

A 1 GB Ipod Shuffle. I am soo excited! Now I just have to figure out how it works.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Hemp Rope

is the name of the paint color that finally adorns the walls of the family room. One coat down; one to go.

The bathroom door still needs to be painted, as Madi got a mysterious rash on Tuesday morning. Today's doctor visit revealed that she is allergic to Amoxicillin and Penicillin. That is one to remember in the future. The rash should be gone in a couple days, and hopefully, I can motivate myself to paint the door in that same time frame. I'll keep you posted.

Monday, March 2, 2009

Monday Update

The work morning on Saturday proved effective. Madi had a great time at Nana's house, and didn't mind me leaving at all. I told her I was going, she gave me a hug, and said "bye bye".

Here's what we were able to accomplish:

The family room:
1. The family room walls are all ready to paint. The first coat is going on tonight.
2. The floor was broom cleaned, so that after the final sanding it only needs to be vacuumed.
3. The last of the carpet strip was removed. This was installed under the built-in shelves, so the removal was not an easy task.
4. Josh & I both have a horrible habit of finishing a task, but then leaving our supplies out. So I spent part of the morning putting all of the accumulated tools, trash, paint cans, rollers, etc. away. Currently, only the items we are still using are in the family room. Well, all except the pile of rags by the door.

The bathroom:
1. The walls all received their fist coat of spackle. They will be sanded this week, and hopefully, the second coat will be applied.
2. The hole in the floor for the toilet was cleaned of the sticky-type glue. Sorry, once again, I am not good with the technical terms.
3. The bathroom door had its hardware removed, and the door was sanded. This will be primed tonight.
4. We found a pedestal sink and an over-the-toilet shelving unit that we like.

So tonight the paint can will be opened! This is a good sign that things are progressing. I'm not going to share with you when we started this room. If you are really desperate for a good laugh, I'll let you look through my past posts. The before pictures are on there somewhere.