Thursday, April 29, 2010


There are so many changing things in your body when you are pregnant.  And when it is your first pregnancy, you have no idea which things are normal and which should be checked by a doctor.  It is a scary place to be because you are the sole person responsible for your growing baby and it is up to you to mention or not mention something that is happening.  Nobody else knows exactly what is happening in your body, or how you are feeling. 

As you think of me, could you pray that I would have wisdom to be able to take care of myself and the baby and to know what is normal and what is not?  And could you pray for peace?  Some days I am just absolutely stressed...and that's not usually like me!  I'm normally fairly laid-back. 

Wisdom and peace.  That would be great.


Wednesday, April 28, 2010

The Local Eating Trend...

There has been a trend in the last few years when it comes to eating.  It is called Local Eating, or eating locally.  The idea is for individuals to choose to eat foods which are in season and grown within a short distance from where they live.

The problem I've always had with this concept is that the people I've heard about who have chosen to eat like this live in areas where there is always something in season.  If this is the case where you live, wonderful!  It is a great way to do your part for the environment and to be responsible for the world around you.  But my question has always been, "What happens if you live on the Canadian prairies and nothing is in season for 9 months of the year?"  I feel like telling the warmer-climate hippies to bite their tongues because obviously they are blind to what winter means for us.

I wasn't even thinking about this question, though, when I discovered that, while growing up, my family really did eat mostly local produce year round!  I had no idea that my mom was so "ahead of the times"!  (I bet Mom didn't either, did you Mom?)  I was shocked to see that it can work, even in the dead of a Saskatchewan winter.  Here's how we did it:

My mom would always have a garden.  In it she would plant cucumbers, potatoes, peas, corn, carrots, onions, tomatoes, peppers, beans (sometimes?), cabbage, and lettuce (am I forgetting anything?).  I also remember having kohlrabi one year, as well as squash.  Rhubarb and raspberries were also grown every year.  These vegetables would basically feed our family all winter.  My mom would spend all summer tending to the garden, planting, hilling, fencing, weeding, picking, etc. 

Once the garden was stripped of all its vegetables, the job wasn't done.  Vegetables don't feed a family all winter without a little help.  Potatoes, carrots and onions were put into storage in a cold room to be used throughout the winter.  Peas and corn were frozen.  Tomatoes were made into sauce and canned.  Cucumbers were made into both relish and pickles.  And, of course, much of the produce was eaten fresh, as that's when it always tastes best!

It's true, I didn't grow up with a variety of vegetables.  We didn't have salads year-round, and our vegetable side dishes were often peas or corn.  But it was a balanced diet nonetheless, and we were all healthy and happy.  And we were helping the environment more than I ever realized... 

Thanks, Mom, for all your hard work in the garden every summer.  Sorry I didn't help out more than you made me!  I do hope to have a big garden one day and provide for my family the way you provided for us.  Thank-you!

woke up singing again...

Psalm 100

A psalm of thanksgiving.
 Shout with joy to the Lord, all the earth!
     Worship the Lord with gladness.
      Come before him, singing with joy.
  Acknowledge that the Lord is God!
      He made us, and we are his.
      We are his people, the sheep of his pasture.
 Enter his gates with thanksgiving;
      go into his courts with praise.
      Give thanks to him and praise his name.
  For the Lord is good.
      His unfailing love continues forever,
      and his faithfulness continues to each generation.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

My greatest fear...

I am not a morning person.

Babies are morning people.  Babies are late night people, babies are middle of the night people, and babies are morning people.

I'm don't really have many fears about being a mother.  One fear I do have, though, is being able to function on little/no sleep for a few years.

How do you mothers of babies/young children out there do it?  Is not needing sleep something that just comes with the territory?  I sure hope so, cause I got up at 6:50am this morning and thought I was going to die.  Not seriously.  But it made me wonder how I'm ever going to be bright-eyed and bushy-tailed EVER AGAIN.

Monday, April 26, 2010

A move is coming...

As, I think, you all know, our move back to Canada is coming up soon.  I spend alot of time thinking about our move because...

a) it's a huge change for us...we won't have been in Canada for 9 months when we get back.
b) we'll be busy when we get back...becoming SK residents, trip to MB for 10 days-ish, seeing people.
c) it's the place we'll be giving birth to our little munchkin and that just makes it feel more real.

But living with an impending move is like walking a high wire.  There is a fine balance to be found between living in the moment and anticipating the future.  This move (as opposed to our move last June away from A-town) has me feeling quite a bit more lonely.  I'm not really connected here like I was in MB, so it feels like we're already pulling away from (and being pulled away from by) our friends here.  I'm not sure that there is a huge advantage to pursuing relationships and cultivating existing ones when there is only 9 months of history and we only have 3 weeks left here.  At the same time, we're not back in Canada yet, so we're not seeing our Canadian friends yet.  It's tough.  I spend alot of time alone these days.  Don't get me wrong, I LOVE my time alone...I thrive on alone time...but there's a difference between being alone and being lonely, right?  That's just it.


On a more exciting note, I felt the baby move for the first time last night.  In the last couple days, I'd been feeling what I thought might be the baby - twitches and gurgles and whatnot - but last night I was 100% certain that our little miracle was making a move.  This was one of the things that I looked forward to the most about pregnancy.  It was so hard to wonder if I would ever experience that feeling as we struggled with infertility.  I just feel so blessed to have received this gift.  It is beautiful.  It is a miracle. 

I am praying for all of you right now who have never experienced this feeling, whether I know you by name or not, that God will provide.  There are far too many women who long, month after month, to know this feeling (or know this feeling again), to experience a baby growing inside, and who feel helpless and hopeless in their wait...may God shower His blessings on you... 

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Another down...a few more to go

I finished a couple more projects in the last few days.  I'm sad that I can't post pictures of the project that is a gift, but I'll just say this: It turned out very well. : )

The one I can post a picture of is the seat belt cover: 

I haven't actually used it yet, but after a slight adjustment it fits the seat belt, and I'd say the fabric is pretty fun.  I cut up an old man Wrangler shirt and used the fabric from the shirt for the main part.  I put some cotton batting in it to add some padding and then quilted it so that it stays put.  Then I took the snap buttons (awesome!) off the shirt and sewed them onto the side of the cover as a means of fastening the sleeve around the seat belt.  Perfect!  The picture really doesn't do justice to how magnificent it is... :D


Since I asked for prayer for the twins the other day, I thought I should let you know the latest. Avery and Mommy got to go home yesterday! Lexie is now breathing on her own, but, as far as I know, is still in the NICU. All tubes have been removed, except for the feeding tube now. Her Mommy & Daddy were finally able to hold her for the first time yesterday! It looks like she is doing really well.  Praise the Lord!

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Question of the Day...and a Prayer Request

I have a question for anyone who lives in or around Saskatoon, Sk.  Where is the place to eat Chinese food?  It needs to be good quality, have a great taste, and be reasonably priced.   And it doesn't need to be in the city.  I'm game for a wild goose chase to small towns nearby...


On an entirely different note, Nathan and I became first time Uncle and Auntie this week.  Nathan's sister and brother-in-law, K&J, has their twins on Tuesday, April 20.  They are two beautiful little girls (from the pictures I've seen) but they were born at 35 weeks.  They are small (5 lbs 10 oz, and 5 lbs 3 oz, I think) and have been having a bit of trouble adjusting to the big, scary world outside of mommy's tummy.  Avery Joy was released from the NICU today, but Lexie Anayah has been having more trouble.  She is still in the NICU and her mommy & daddy haven't been able to hold her yet.  Please pray for the whole family, but especially that Lexie's little body will experience healing so that she can be with her family too.  Thanks.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Seventeen again...

Seventeen weeks, that is...

I am feeling quite good these days.  I basically feel back to my "pre-pregnancy" self, except for the growing belly, of course.  I still have moments of food aversion here and there, and the occasional sick day.  But for the most part, I'm feeling great. 

The belly continues to grow.  It hit me the other day that I still have 23 weeks of growing that needs to happen!  I know, duh!, right?  That's the idea of a 9-month pregnancy.  But I look back over the last 2-3 weeks, which is when I've really started to notice the belly popping out, and I notice growth almost daily, for sure weekly.  And I think of 23 more weeks worth of that rate of growth.  I am going to be HUGE!!  It is a bit of an overwhelming thought.  There's no escaping it!  (not that I want to...)

I haven't felt any movement yet, at least not that I can recognize as baby movement.  I hear that will come soon, as long as the placenta isn't in the way...I'm pretty excited, but trying to enjoy my undistracted sleep attempts while I can!

My appetite is slowly picking up again.  With everything just not sounding appetizing, it's been difficult to really think much about eating (though I must!).  But the other night my hunger hit in full force!  At 10pm I was sitting there, thinking about going to bed and I was just SO hungry!  I got up and made myself a plate of fried spaghetti (YUM) and polished it off no problem.  It didn't make a dent in my hunger though.  I had a slice of bread with some good ol' Nutella on it and, while that still didn't seem to make a difference, I didn't know what else I could justify eating at 10:45 at night so I went to bed.  It felt SO good to be that hungry after not having much of an appetite since early February though!  I hear there's more of that to come, so I guess I'll have to start steering my snacks in a more healthy direction.  It's not that I don't snack regularly on apples, yogurt, etc, but somehow full-meal deals (like leftovers) appeal to me more...

Well, I can't think of what else comes with the 17 week mark.  It's not feeling terribly real yet, but I don't know if that will ever come until there is a little bundle in my arms.  I am looking forward to getting back to Canada so I can open up the boxes of baby stuff that I've been collecting over the past 3-4 years though.  That will be an exciting day...and probably emotional too.  That's another thing that has been coming with pregnancy...being unexplainably emotional!

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

being crafty...

<--this is not me and this is not my sewing room...though a girl can dream, right?

I spent yesterday in my craft room (yup, I have pretty much taken over our spare bedroom with my projects).  I have so much on the go right now.  I guess I just need to face it that that's how I work.  I find myself with nothing to do so I start looking for projects.  I start 10 projects at the same time and spend the next couple weeks (or months) jumping from project to project until they're all done.  Then I do nothing for a while until I realize that I have nothing to do and the cycle starts all over again.

I've been meaning to post pictures of what I've been working on lately, but, of my many projects, none of them is actually finished, so there will be no pictures today.  Hopefully soon!  But I can tell you what I'm working on!  That's almost as good, right?  Ok, no it's not.  But we can pretend...

Let's see.  My biggest project is what I'm making for the twins that are coming into the family.  Of course, that is a gift, so I can't say what it is or post pictures until after I've given the gift.  But believe me, it's pretty cool and it is coming along quite well, if I do say so myself...

The next project is one of those sleeve-things for the car seat belt.  I have this terrible habit, when I ride in the car, to put the seat belt under my arm instead of across my chest, as it is supposed to be.  Well, I was in the car the other day and realized that I will need to stop doing that as the seat belt goes right across my expanding belly...and that just isn't safe.  Yet when the seat belt is across my chest, it cuts into my neck because, let's face it, I am a wee bit on the small side.  So I cut up an old-man, plaid, Wrangler shirt and made a quilted sleeve out of it.  It turned out pretty cool-looking.  I ran into a bit of a problem with this project last night, though.  I measured the seat belt width and added an inch to allow for padding and so that the sleeve would wrap all the way around the belt.  Well, when I took it to the car last night, it didn't even quite wrap all the way around.  Apparently an inch wasn't enough.  I'm not about to take it all apart and make a new one, so now I need to figure out how to make this thing fit.  That's why there are no pictures of this project yet.

I also have a purse on the go.  I crocheted the outside of it, but it is a pretty hole-y shell - granny squares, so I am planning on sewing a liner to fit inside it.  This seems like the project least with a "due date", so it is just sitting there, waiting to be completed.  I don't think it would take more than an hour or two, but you know how it is...other things take priority.  I think it'll make a fun summer bag...that or it'll be like every other crocheted purse I've ever made and I'll never use it...we'll see!

Also on my list of projects is the regular hemming/mending that I need to do.  Nathan and I bought another pair of maternity pants for me the other day and they desperately need to be hemmed before I wear them.  I don't especially love hemming.  It's not that it's much work, I'm just nervous to cut them too short...because of this I usually end up not hemming them short enough and still end up rolling up the bottoms!  As a result, it doesn't get done very often.  I also hope to cut a pair of my old jeans into shorts and try to add a stretchy belly panel to them so that I can wear them this summer.  Sounds like it's a disaster waiting to happen, right?  Well, yeah.  I'm nervous about trying this, so it is also just sitting there, intimidating me every time I think about it!  But I'd be so excited if it actually worked!

I'm trying to use up many of my scraps of yarn and fabric before we move...somehow it just seems more worth packing and moving if it is actually made into something.  But it would also be fun to arrive back with a few goodies so that I can play this summer! : )

Saturday, April 17, 2010


So...I am not a business woman.  I've tried my hand at selling Creative Memories.  I couldn't manage to sell enough to even pay for the minimum requirement.  I've now tried Etsy and I am not a "go-getter" enough to advertise and be competitive and keep active.  Therefore, I've decided to go inactive as far as Etsy goes.  Especially with our coming year being so crazy with moving and moving and...moving again, not to mention our growing family, I just don't see myself creating things so that I can try to sell them to other people.  I have a feeling I'll be plenty busy and will be thankful if I have time to create stuff for myself!

That said, I do LOVE to make things for other people.  So if anyone would like anything (if they've seen something they like or have an idea of something), you can totally feel free to get in touch with me and ask me about it.  I will let you know if I think it's do-able or if I have time for it or whatever.  And I'm not looking to bring in a huge profit (with Etsy, they took a certain percentage so the costs were higher, plus I was potentially making things for random people as opposed to just for friends).  The costs should be reasonable as I'll just try to cover my costs and, depending on how busy I am, maybe some of my time. 

So the offer is officially open.  I'm game for some creative challenges, people!

Thursday, April 15, 2010

It all connects...

I was talking to someone today and our pregnancy came up.  I shared that we had been trying for over three years and that, because of our struggle with infertility, we hadn’t really expected this pregnancy to happen this year.  Her comment to that was, “That’s how it always seems to work.  Just when you stop “trying”, that’s when it comes.”

That stopped me in my tracks.  That is exactly the sort of comment that I would have struggled so much with in the midst of infertility.  And I realized that it is a comment that I still struggle with…

A comment like this suggests that there is some sort of “method” to getting what you want.  It implies that all you need to do is “forget about it” or “relax” or “convince yourself that your life is fine without it” and then you will receive your heart’s desire.  To this my heart screams, “NO!”  There is no “formula” to get what you want from God.  You can try or not try as much as you want, but if things aren’t happening, they just aren’t happening.

(As a sidenote, we hadn’t “stopped trying” this year at seminary and my desire was strong as ever…it’s not that we’d “forgotten about it” or that it mattered less to us at that point, in fact, quite the opposite)

I mentioned in my blog post “Our Story...” that our period of infertility will always be part of the story of our family.  While I have stepped out of that realm of women longing desperately for motherhood, I do find that certain comments still affect me as a result of having been there.  And having walked that road is affecting how I am walking through this pregnancy now.  I am thrilled about the life that is growing in me.  I am embracing motherhood and everything that goes with it (nausea and food aversion included).  But I also remember vividly that hopelessness that comes with infertility.  I remember feeling lost in life, at times, with the absence of one of my greatest dreams.  And as I walk through this pregnancy, I am very aware that there are still many around me who are walking that painful road. 

I want to be sensitive to you who are still waiting for your miracle.  I want to remember the road we walked as I rejoice in this new life.  I sincerely hope that our story can be an encouragement to you that miracles are possible, though I also acknowledge the reality that it is often more of a painful reminder to see someone pregnant than it is an encouragement…  

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Little heads...

Earlier in my pregnancy, 4 weeks ago to be exact, we had a bit of a scare and I was put on bed-rest for two weeks.  Don't worry, everything is fine now, but while I was on bed-rest, I had some time on my hands.  Of course, I was dreaming of our September baby and thinking of ways to keep him/her cozy as winter approaches.  These little toques are SO fun to make...and so TINY!  I think our kid will have a very warm head this coming winter!  I'm going to have lots of fun whipping these up as our little munchkin grows...

One in case it's a boy...

One in case it's a girl...

And one that's just adorable!

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Meal Ideas...

First off, I think it would only be fair if I shared one of my meal ideas with you.  So many of you were helpful and left a note of a suggestion for me to try, so I'll return the favor!  Now let's see...when I'm running last minute, a quick, easy, and healthy meal fall-back is...
 Stir Fry
The most common stir fry I make is with chicken.  I cut the chicken into strips and stir-fry it until it is cooked.  Then, I throw in some onions and peppers and cook them until they are a little bit soft.  Then, I add whatever vegetables I have in the fridge (celery, carrots, broccoli, cauliflower, etc.) and stir-fry that for a couple minutes/seconds.  I add to that a mixture of apple juice, soy sauce, chicken stock, garlic powder, and perhaps whatever else I see as I'm throwing stuff together.  I let that simmer for a couple minutes until the veggies are cooked and serve it on rice.  Mmm...

Now on to your ideas!
Karisbrandes said...
Jared and I eat a fair bit of chicken ceasar salad. It's a lettuce base so I figure that's very healthy. Though that's probably counteracted by the amount of dressing that goes on it. And sometimes I fry the chicken which makes it even less healthy (but soooo yummy)
Blogger Sparlingo said...
Jeremy and I make this really lovely turkey dish. It will sound really weird, but the main ingredients are: lean ground turkey, peanut butter, soy sauce, ginger, brocolli slaw (brocolli, cauliflower, cabbage). As long as you don't use too much PB it's pretty healthy (although admittedly high in sodium).
Blogger Kelsie-Lynn said...
These days our favorite is mini-meatloafs (which I got from Sabrina's meal blog), rice or a noodle dish of some kind, stemmed veggies, and a salad. Nothing fancy but we love it. I will send you the link for the meatloafs. I don't usually like maatloaf but I love this one.
Blogger Jo Funk said...
Macaroni, Mushroom Soup, and Hamburger... abbreviated to "mac mush ham" in my family. Ingredients: Onion, Garlic, Ground beef, Macaroni, Cream of mushroom soup, and Peas Pretty simple really... Saute diced onion and garlic, add group beef and brown. Boil up macaroni(or any other kind of noodle). When beef is fully cooked, add a can or two of cream of mushroom soup(tomato soup also works very well) and mix. DO NOT add any water or milk. Drain noodles and mix into beef sauce. Peas go well. Add to meat sauce while noodles are cooking and allow to heat through. Another awesome side dish is ranch potato bake. Ingredients: Potatoes, ranch dressing, seasoning, Ritz crackers. Cube potatoes. Cover with ranch dressing and spices(wahtever you have on hand, I like using a bit of italian seasoning and victorian epicure cheese chives and bacon dip mix). Put in a glass baking dish and cover with foil. Bake at 350 until potatoes are almost done(check periodically, not sure how long it takes). when almost done, crunch up some ritz crackers and put on top. Bake uncovered until potatoes are done.
Blogger Alicia said...
Stir-fries are the staple meal around here - there's no other yummy way to get that many vegetables into me. Sometimes I come home from grocery shopping and chop a whole lot of vegetables so they're handy for stir-frying. We also chop all of our meat into stir-fry sized chunks before freezing. We use tamari instead of traditional soy sauce, which is what my naturopath recommended and I actually like it better than soy. Given that you live in California - health-freak central - you should have no problem finding it. Another idea is beef dip - yum! We brought that to potluck this evening. Carrie recommends our sausage and cabbage dish - cook some farmer sausage, add shredded cabbage, carrots (I shred the carrots with a vegetable peeler for this dish) and onions and saute. Season with butter, salt and pepper. Really good served over mashed potatoes. On the cabbage theme, I'd also recommend that you look up a "Runza" recipe online - kind of like mom's meat buns but with cabbage inside too.

Monday, April 12, 2010

talking to kids...

One of the joys of living in community is having kids around all the time.  Well, this can be a joy as well as a frustration, especially when the kids aren't yours.  Yesterday I was talking to one of our neighbours and she was commenting on my growing baby bump.  Her kids were nearby and are quite enthralled with the fact that I'm having a baby.  They each had a comment/advice for me:

6 year old "E", a boy, was quick to let me know that my belly is not big enough.  there was no "you're not big enough yet" nor any indication of him understanding the idea of a belly in progress.  i was just simply not big enough to have a baby inside.  Well, I assured him that this was only the beginning of the belly and that I would get much, much bigger before too long.

Then 4 year old "S", a girl, piped up with some advice that I should go to the hospital to get the baby out.  Like, right now.  I laughed and said that it would still be a long time before I went to the hospital to get the baby out because the baby wasn't ready to come out yet.  She must have thought I was really quite ready to get this "thing" out of me already!  How helpful of her to let me know where I would need to go once I am ready to get this baby out!

We also heard, second-hand, about a conversation that some of our other court neighbours had with these particular kids.  It came up that Niki was having a baby and they were all in agreement about that fact.  Then our neighbour asked, "Well what about Nathan?  Isn't he having a baby too?"  I believe it was the six-year-old who said, "No, Nathan's not having a baby.  Boys just give the sperm!"  Wow.  I think there are some things that will stay mysteries to our kids until they are a bit older than 4 or 6!

Saturday, April 10, 2010

It is time...high time...

Ok, everyone.  EVERYONE.  It is time for you to talk back.  

I am looking for some  

decently balanced
decently healthy 
meal ideas.  

(And quick and easy are pluses too)  

When you are thinking about supper, what is your favorite meal to make?
What is your favorite meal to eat?
What is the meal that just makes you feel healthy?

Now, don't go running to your recipe book (unless you really want to).
Often the best meals are the ones that are second nature, that you know off the top of your head.

Think for a second...

And now hit the comment button and let me know what you thought of!

It's time to get some fresh recipes into this kitchen of mine!

And here's a can come back in a couple days and check out the comments for a couple new meal ideas for yourself! 

Thursday, April 8, 2010

It's been decided...

I mentioned a couple posts ago that Nathan and I were having a hard time deciding on whether or not to find out the gender of our little munchkin before the delivery room.  Well, we've made a decision and a surprise it will be!  Nathan's main reason for wanting to find out was that I already felt like I knew what we were having and he figured we may as well confirm it.  I had such a strong feeling about it that I would have actually been surprised if we delivered the opposite.  I say "had" because the feeling is not so strong anymore.  I'm still pretty sure I know though ; ) 

Yesterday was my entry into the 16th week of pregnancy, so I'm officially 15 full weeks now.  Yay!  This is what I'm looking like these days:
There's not much to see, but the belly is starting to show, at least compared to what it was.  I got my first pair of maternity jeans while Nathan's parents were out and WOW!  I hadn't realized just how uncomfortable my old jeans had gotten until I wore those.  I plan to hem them today and then I think I will live in them for the next 9 months or so!  I've also heard about belly bands.  They're basically the stretchy part of maternity pants, just without the pants attached.  You wear your old regular jeans, unbuttoned and unzipped, and wear the band on top so that it doesn't look like you just forgot to do up your fly.  Has anyone ever used one of these?  Is it a must-have or did you hate it?  Any insights for me?

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Monterey and the Coast

Friday and Saturday of last week were spent on the beautiful coast of California.  Nathan's parents have been down since Wednesday, so we enjoyed the coast with them.  On Friday morning, we drove down to Monterey Bay.  We spent a couple hours in the Monterey Aquarium, which was quite fascinating and VERY impressive.  I'm not normally much of a "fish person" but I must admit, it was quite remarkable.  My favorite part, though, was when Nathan and I just sat and watched the sea otters play.  They really liked to show off for the people watching and it was great fun to see!
These are some of the waves that we saw crashing on the coast at Monterey.  
They were the largest I'd ever seen in my life...I think they were about 12-13 feet high.

The next day we spend the majority of the day just driving down the coast.   It was so very beautiful, but since getting pregnant, I have been much more prone to car-sickness.  The roads were up-and-down and very curvy through the coastal mountains.  The waves were crashing on the rocks way down beside us, but I could hardly look out the window to enjoy it!  Oh well.  I'm really glad we went because it's something I've wanted to see since we moved down here. 
This picture is the "Lone Cypress" in/near Monterey.  It is over 250 years old.

Sunday we went to church together and spent the afternoon napping and reading and making beer butt chicken (see Nathan's blog HERE).  Overall it was a wonderful Easter weekend.  He is RISEN!!!

Monday, April 5, 2010


Oh, Karis, you are a mean one.  Asking questions just so I have to re-type everything over and over again!  I guess you know, deep deep down, that I don't really mind...

How did you tell your families? 
Well, for my parents, we had the pleasure of sharing our news with them when they were here in person!  We bought a tiny, little onesie and wrapped it up.  We gave it to them the morning after they arrived, all casual-like, just saying that we'd seen something that made us think of them.  I had attached a tag that said, "Guess what?!"  They opened it together and were both very surprised and excited.

For Nathan's parents, we bought a little sleeper and put it in the mail with a tag that said, "Call us."  We decided at this point that mailing something, especially from the States to Canada, was a bad idea.  We waited anxiously for the package to arrive for over a week.  Finally we got a very confused/hopeful phone call and were able to share our news via Skype.

Have you had weird cravings? 
 I haven't had any/many weird cravings.  Nothing unusual anyway.  I'm thinking those may pick up once my appetite picks up a bit more in the next few weeks.

At what point did you think that you were pregnant?
 I didn't ever really think that I was pregnant!  That's the weird part.  I mean, obviously I hoped when I was late, but late for me is not out of the norm.  I felt sick for about a week before taking a test, but there was a flu going around, so I thought I had just caught that.  Besides, it wasn't like I was REALLY sick...just feeling a bit off.  When I was well over a month late, and had been feeling sick-ish for about a week, I took a test and it was positive.  The weird thing is that I'd taken two tests before that (spaced by a couple weeks) that were both negative, so I really didn't think that it had happened.  Once we had the first postive, Nathan sent me out to Walmart to buy a more expensive test so we could be sure.  An hour later, we were very sure!

I'm curious if you're planning to find out the sex of the baby?

 Well, Alicia, we're not really sure.  I don't really want to, but Nathan does, so we're talking about it.  We have about 5 weeks to decide, so we'll keep talking.  I would be interested in what you all think, though.  If you haven't had kids, do you think you would want to find out?  If you do have kids, did you find out?  Are you glad you did things the way you did?  We have no clue which way to go...

In other news, another major piece of information that kinda goes along with this whole pregnancy thing is that we are moving back to Canada.  We'll park ourselves in the promised land (aka Saskatchewan) while Nathan finishes school distance-style and then we'll see where we'll be after that.  When we found out we were pregnant, we just couldn't imagine our kids not knowing their grandparents and uncles and aunts.  Health care played into the decision as well, as did Lennox.  We're quite excited about this move, coming up in mid-May, but are also going to miss being in California for another winter... 

Saturday, April 3, 2010

The Details...

Ok, so here are some of the details of what's happening...seeing as quite a bit has happened in the past couple months that I haven't been able to share!

First, some pics...the first picture is a "before" picture from when we first found out.  This is me at about...8 weeks?  The next picture is at our "before" photography session - just me and Nathan having fun at home) at about 10 weeks.  No pictures have been taken since then, but I'll have to get on that again this week...

Nathan and I found out that we were expecting on February 13, 2010.  There's actually a funny/cool story to go along with that date.  More than a year ago (probably December 2008 or so) I had been praying about having a baby and God said to me to "expect a baby in February."  Admittedly, I got a bit mad because that really tells me very little more than I already knew.  It sure sounded like one day we could expect a child of our own, but biological or through adoption?  If biological, would the conception be in February, or the due date?  If adoption, would we start the paperwork in February, or would we receive our referral in February, or would we actually welcome a child into our home in February?  See what I mean?  Anyway, February 2009 came and went and my hopes died a little.  Then, May came and went (when the due date would have been February), and I put God's words out of my mind, thinking it must have been my imagination.  Well, imagination or not, those words came back to me when, on February 13th, we had our first positive pregnancy test.  Expect a baby in February.  Indeed.

So, moving on.  Expected date of delivery is September 29, 2010.  That puts me at 14.5 weeks right now.  We wanted to wait until we were safely in the second trimester before our big announcement.  We had a scare at week 12 when we thought we lost the baby, but, after two weeks of bedrest, I have been given the all-clear to resume regular activity.  Of course I'm still trying to take it easy, but it sure is nice to be able to get out of bed and do a few things around the house!  As you think of us and the pregnancy, please pray that everything continues to go safely and smoothly.

Hmm...what else?  I haven't gained much weight, maybe 5 lbs.  I've gained about 5-6 inches around my belly but I'm not really showing yet.  Every week it seems to get a little bit bigger though!  I haven't felt Baby move yet.  I haven't experienced much morning sickness.  For the most part I've felt quite healthy through the last 3 months.  I've had some food aversion (like having to mentally prepare myself for every food I ate from week 6-13.5).  I've actually only thrown up once, and that was due to a little flu-thing that I had more than morning sickness.  Too much information?  Ok, sorry.

Well, I can't think of anything else, so if any of you have questions, feel free to fire away.  I've probably missed something.

Happy Easter everyone!  Hope everyone is having a wonderful weekend!

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Our Story...

I sometimes think back to September 2006.  I think about how far we've come since we started trying to conceive.  When we first started trying, like most other couples, we didn't expect that it would take very long before we held our first child in our arms.

The next couple months held much hurt, pain, impatience, anger, and frustration.  Why weren't things happening?  Was there something wrong?  I saw my doctor after 6 months of trying and was casually told to wait another year and a half before inquiring about tests again.  So we kept trying...and kept waiting.

Soon there were theological questions to go along with the physical ones.  If God created the desire in me to be a mother, why wasn't it happening?  Is God really not as "in control" as I'd first thought?  Is God not really as loving or as good as I'd always believed?  What was going on?  Who was this God that I'd committed my life to serving...and who was I?  These questions have surrounded me and been near to my heart and mind since shortly into 2007.

As time went on, the two year mark approached and more of our friends were having children of their own.  We were getting more and more comments about when we were going to have babies and it was hurting more and more each time.  Finally I reached a point when I couldn't handle it anymore.  At the two-year mark, we told our parents, our friends, and, on my blog, the world.  It was no longer a secret.  It became easier at that point, both because people knew to be sensitive to our pain and because there were more people drawing around us, supporting us with love and prayers.

The questions I mentioned earlier have lingered, but, especially in the last year and a half, there has been much healing.  God has not been silent through our struggle (though it has sometimes felt like He has).  He has not been absent (though it has sometimes felt like this too).  I have come to a deeper understanding of God's provision.  I have been stretched in my understanding of how God works, and find that, though I don't always want to trust (and don't always trust) God's work, it is for our good.  There are still many things I don't understand, and, frankly, wish I could change, about God's design.  But I am still on the journey...

The story of our family will always include the last three and a half years.  Those years were harder than I can possibly describe and have shaped both of us individually, as well as our marriage.  Our faith has been stretched.  Our hearts have been bruised.  And it is not without a great deal of fear that we make this announcement.  But there is no question in our minds that this is a miracle.

It is with great hope and excitement that we announce the anticipated arrival of our own little miracle later this year. 

Wow.  I can't believe I just typed that.  It's just too good to be true.