28 December 2008

Christmas with the Clarks

What a fantastic Christmas weekend! The festivities started with spending Christmas Eve with my parents and my sister, Karen. We ate dinner together and opened too many presents. (Cheeto got more presents than anyone!) Then we went to the candlelight service at Chris' parents' church. Early Christmas morning, Chris and I exchanged our gifts. I was most excited about giving him an MP3 player, something he wanted but wasn't expecting. Here he is rocking to the music on his new player: I was completely shocked when I opened a special gift from Chris: a new camera! Recently I've been drooling over a camera that was a little too pricey for our price range, but Chris surprised me by using some of his basketball money to buy it for me (and Cheeto!). I've got about two months to learn all the bells and whistles before it will be time to take pictures of Cheeto. We spent Christmas day with my extended family. We had a great time together, especially playing Catchphrase. My grandma was very entertaining and witty during the game! Friday was Christmas with Chris' family. We watched a few movies (sort of a tradition for the Clarks) and ate a lot of food. Chris' parents surprised us by buying a crib for Cheeto. So Chris and his dad spent part of Saturday assembling the crib: After I wash the bedding, a gift courtesy of Grandma and Grandpa Hromada, we'll be well on our way to setting up the nursery. Saturday night was Chris' only basketball game of the week. I wasn't planning on going. But since it was a good excuse to play with our new camera, I decided to go! I got some pretty good shots and had fun experimenting with the camera.

So that's how we spent our Christmas. We hope everyone else had a blessed Christmas with family and friends!

27 December 2008

Happy anniversary, Hubby!

Five years ago today, the man of my dreams proposed to me.

It all started with a poem on Christmas Eve that told me my gift would arrive later. I admit I was a little miffed that he couldn't buy my gift in time. :o) Over the next several days, I received more poems, all lovingly written by Chris.

It all culminated with a final poem, some heartfelt words and a lot of tears in the lobby of the jewelry store. You may not think that was a very romantic location, but I thought it was perfect. Chris insisted that he couldn't keep that ring in his pocket for very long. So he proposed as soon as he picked it up from the jeweler!

It's hard to believe how far we've come in five years, Chris. Our life couldn't be more perfect. And I can't believe we're waiting for our little one's arrival. Thank you for loving me and for choosing to spend your life with me. I love you!

25 December 2008

Merry Christmas!

Just popping on to wish everyone a merry Christmas! God has already blessed us so much, but we feel extra blessed this year. We're already feeling the love for Cheeto and he/she isn't even here yet! We had one family celebration today, and there will be another one tomorrow. We'll post pictures and updates later this weekend. Enjoy this special time of year with your friends and family. Remember during your celebrations, the Cross is why the manger is so important!

18 December 2008

The week in review

We had a lot going on this week and not much of it was Christmas-related. Let's see if I can remember everything...

First, we said goodbye to the 1972 linoleum in the kitchen and laundry room. We replaced it with the same wood laminate that we installed in the dining room and entry way.

We also replaced the royal blue carpet in Cheeto's nursery with some more eye-appealing, kid-friendly carpet.

Next on our "to do" list is purchasing the nursery furniture. Then we can start getting organized and preparing the room for our little Cheeto.

This week, we also finished our childbirth classes. So I guess the medical community thinks we're ready to have a baby! Even though the classes made me more nervous and scared, we really did learn a lot and feel a little more prepared for this whole thing. I must say I'm glad that I wasn't too shocked or surprised during the classes. I know a lot about pregnancy and labor and delivery, thanks to my line of work. We'll just see how much that knowledge translates into action during the birth process!

And let me say right now how grateful I am to have such a loving, supportive and encouraging husband. I was appalled at the childish and immature comments coming from many of the fathers in our classes. I know that Chris will be a wonderful help to both me and the baby. I'm so glad we're doing all of this together!

And finally...tomorrow I will be 31 weeks. So here's my 30-week picture:

Cheeto is quickly outgrowing this tank top. I hope it will last just a few more weeks!

15 December 2008

30-week appointment

I had another uneventful appointment today. My blood pressure is great. I haven't gained any weight gain since my last appointment. Cheeto's heartbeat was at 140 bpm. And my glucose level from my gestational diabetes test was normal at 116. My doctor and I talked about potential interventions during labor and delivery. I just wanted to get her opinions on when she'd resort to some of these measures, including a C-section. I was very satisfied with her answers. She seems to be a pretty conservative practitioner, but I know she'll always keep my and Cheeto's health in mind. My next appointment (32 weeks) will be Jan. 2, and I'll see one of the other doctors in the practice. Until then, I'll keep continuing my quiet, boring pregnancy!

13 December 2008

Not your mother's cloth diapers

Sorry we've been MIA from the blog lately. Childbirth classes, Christmas preparations and basketball games have kept us from making blog entries lately. * * * * * We anticipate that we'll be pretty traditional and conservative parents. But we didn't really expect that we'd take a step back in time by considering cloth diapers for Cheeto. After hearing great experiences from some of my online friends, I did some investigating and made the suggestion to Chris. At first, it took a little convincing to get him on board. He was expecting the cumbersome diapers and safety pins our mothers used. But after the thorough in-home demo from Toasty Baby and hearing the many advantages of cloth diapering, he agreed to give it a try. He couldn't argue with these facts:
  • An estimated 27.4 billion disposable diapers are consumed every year in the United States.
  • A single disposable diaper may take 250 to 500 years to decompose.
  • Disposable diaper use contributes to 1 ton of garbage per baby in landfills.
  • Babies who are cloth diapered are potty trained on average in 24 months, versus 30 months for those who wear disposable diapers.
  • On average, disposable diapers cost about $2,200 for 30 months while using prefold diapers and covers costs $735 for 24 months.
Thanks to Toasty Baby for this data. So when Cheeto is about a week old, and after we get into a diapering routine, we're going to move to cloth diapers. We plan to use prefold diapers with covers, plus a few all-in-ones when we're out and about, away from home. One way we plan to make this new adventure a little easier is by using Toasty Baby's diaper service. Yes, it's very much like the diaper service my mother used when I was a baby. Each week, Toasty Baby will drop off 100 prefold diapers and pick up the dirty ones. No laundering involved for us! This helped Chris ultimately decide to go with cloth diapers. :o) So if you plan on babysitting Cheeto, expect to get a crash course in cloth diapering. Trust us...it's not as difficult as you might expect!

02 December 2008

28-week appointment

Today was a very uneventful 28-week appointment. My blood pressure and weight are still on track, and Cheeto's heartbeat is about 130 bpm. (Don't try to judge Cheeto's sex based on the heartbeat. It's not a very good indicator. :o) ) They also tested me for gestational diabetes. For this test, I drank an orange, surgary syrup then had my blood drawn an hour later. We don't expect anything to be wrong, but they'll let us know if there's a problem. Now our appointments are every two weeks. Yikes! Already? Then once I reach 36 weeks, our appointments will be weekly. I wonder if the third trimester will drag on like so many women say it does!