Sunday, May 31, 2009

Adventures in Camping

With a weekend to ourselves, we took off Saturday morning to Red Feather for a day of camping. And what a day it was! First, Joe found a great spot with a gorgeous view overlooking the valley - *sigh!* The weather was beautiful while we set up camp, but with clouds rolling in we has to build a little shelter for our firewood to stay dry. The tent took 5 minutes start to finish, the shelter took more like 45. Go figure. As forecasted, it DID rain a bit, and Patrick DID hate getting his head wet, but the thunder was pretty cool - I think it sounded like a big monster truck to him!
Gorgeous view of the valley and snow-capped mountains in the background.

The sunset Saturday evening

Patrick helped drag over some firewood for dad to chop up

Once camp was set up we went for a little hike. I use the term "hike" loosely, it was more like a long-ish walk in the woods. Patrick loved his Kelty! This is him laughing, not crying.

He loved it so much, he fell asleep in it.


His first bloody nose! And he's still smiling! There were lots of people riding dirt bikes and 4-wheelers past our camp, which I normally would have HATED but Patrick loved it every time they went by, and I love when he gets so excited, so I loved it, too. He got a little too excited this time and tripped on a log as he was running to see the "vroom-vrooms" (as he "refers" to everything that moves). When they went by 30 seconds later, he was back in good spirits. Nothing a "vroom-vroom" can't fix :)

The night got chilly so we tried out his winter gear. He didn't seem to care that the mittens kept his hands warm, but it was SO fun to clap with them on!

Thanks for visiting our blog! See ya next time :)

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Weekend adventures

Since it was a long weekend and we had an invite to stay with my sister and her hubby in Pueblo, we took advantage! Of course, we didn't leave until Saturday evening, so it wasn't longer than any other weekend, but it was an IMPORTANT weekend since it was Kari's birthday! Happy 24 :)

I was a little worried about such a long car trip back-to-back, but we brought the DVD player and made in through with sanity intact - both ways! This thing is also really handy when Patrick wants to get up really early in the morning but you do NOT. He's entertained and you can cook breakfast to help wake you up (thanks, Kari and Joe, for doing this and letting me sleep!).

This is the cousin-to-be's first playdate. Kari's due 10 weeks ahead of me so it's much more fun to hang around her belly than mine, hers moves a whole lot more! And it's also much more noticeable, I have to admit after looking at the photo. Darn, thought I was maybe already a cute noticeably-pregnant girl! Soon enough.

Patrick was ready to head home on this tractor, but then it started raining and he can't STAND his head getting wet, so he quickly hopped off. Guess we'll be waiting a little longer before running through the sprinklers is fun!

We had a great weekend, looking forward to lots more crazy trips this summer!

Wednesday, May 20, 2009


I begged Joe to wear this to work, but even though he didn't have anything important going on, he just felt too silly. So I got a photo instead, and now EVERYONE can enjoy it!

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

More on doulas and such

Seriously, I never thought I could say (or type) the word "doula" without suppressing a giggle. It's such a weird word, and so unused you don't get used to it like other weird words... that is, unless you start getting serious about having a doula with you during labor. Which I have gotten serious about.

Before being in labor with Patrick I took preparatory classes with Joe, who was very supportive of both the classes and of me doing what I wanted during labor. I felt ready to go until I actually was in labor, hours and hours and hours of stupid labor, when I kicked myself for not having a backup plan for support. I love Joe dearly, and heaven knows he did the best he could, but 31 hours is long for anyone - as much as you love your sports team, even the cheerleaders on the sidelines would become less enthusiastic if the game dragged on 31 hours. So while I labored, Joe napped, chatted with the nurses, and gave me backrubs when I demanded them, but I seemed to be missing something - or someone. Someone to sense what I needed so that I didn't have to ask (I'm already in labor, don't make me ask to take a walk, get a backrub, and single-handedly refuse pain meds while the nurses give me pitying looks!). It was the first time for both of us, and we both did the best we knew how, but I guess in the end I wanted someone who has BEEN THERE to BE THERE for ME. Enter: a doula.

While searching for that Someone for this time around, I interviewed 1 midwife and 2 doulas. The midwife was actually kind of a jerk who was very negative about my experience last time ("you shouldn't have..." and "I would never have...") and negative about any woman considering a hospital birth. I'm actually very pro-home-birth after researching on it during my last pregnancy, but due to high-risk factors for me and possibly the most negative home-birth husband you could ask for, I was (and will be) happy enough to have my baby in a hospital, thank-you-very-much. She relented when I told her the doctor had decided to c-section when Patrick's heart rate dropped to 40 beats/minute - she said even she, Hospital Hater McGee, would have emergency transferred me to the hospital for such a low heart rate. HA!

On to the doulas, who were both VERY sweet and sympathetic to my tale while being supportive of my wishes for next time around. I'm quite set on doing a vbac, though it'll be harder to turn down the epidural this time since I am now fully aware of HOW GOOD IT FEELS. Serena, the doula I've settled on, assured me that having a baby face the right way will be MUCH more bearable than sunny-side-up, so perhaps I can avoid the epidural after all. We'll see. We're going to focus on making that happen before labor even starts, and when labor DOES start she can help me through, along with Joe (who said he would only be there if I wasn't such a jerk during labor this time). Combining my doctor's support, my doula's support and my husband's support (maybe, if I'm not a jerk) I'm feeling downright positive about having a successful vbac! No more 3-month recovery period where I have to walk on eggshells and want to die! (I don't think the c-section recovery would have been too bad, but back-to-back surgeries really knocked me on my rear). No dealing with not being able to pickup Patrick because he is, quite frankly, heavier than the newborn, the "maximum weight limit" post-c-section. And no more awful, awful scars to add to my collection. It's still a long ways away, but wish me luck, I'm going to need it.

Monday, May 18, 2009

A work in progress is still considered progress... right?

I got to spend last week at my parents' house, continuing our work on renovating and updating their home. We had a great week, and though we got a lot of work done, there were more important things going on behind the scenes. For one, the serious male bonding between my dad and Patrick. If I wasn't around to be the favorite, the honor would fall to grandpa Gus (sorry, Joe!), who cements his place at the top by being the only one nice enough to turn on the lawn mower for Patrick - "brrrrrrrm, brrrrrrm!" The rest of us try diversion tactics since, quite frankly, we're tired of checking out the mower. For another, there is nothing so priceless to an exploring toddler as an open backyard. Living in apartments for so long, we haven't really missed having one - until now. Now I long for the dirt-digging, weed-pulling, lemonade-sipping, free exploring times there are to be had with such a plot of land. Patrick NEVER got tired of going outside, unless it was to INSIDE the garade to check out that lawn mower just one more time. Needless to say, we're still (yep, STILL) crossing out fingers for that house. And lastly, there is no way quite so easy to please our tough-to-please grandma Gustavson as simply letting her be with Patrick for a while. She thinks we don't trust her to watch our babies (because we don't), which seems to be insulting for a woman who has a care-giver come help HER out a few times a week, so if she is "left lone" with him for a while, she gets both the pleasure of his company and the feeling of being trusted to be in charge (she isn't). Meanwhile, I get the pleasure of kicking up my feet and watching through the window only to intervene when stairs or stealing great-grandma's walker is involved. So for the week I got to have fun being artsy for a while, my parents and grandma got to hang with Patrick for a while, the house is getting better slowly but surely, and we all got to spend a little time doing things we don't normally get to do. Now, let's do it again!

Saturday, May 9, 2009

I'll do better tomorrow

I constantly (pretty much daily) recommit myself to doing and being better, and daily I fail - that's why I have to recommit so often! But instead of feeling defeated, I feel renewed each day - a new chance! A clean slate! I have to laugh about all the things I commit to, though, like:
-never, ever leaving another dish dirty in the sink. I will either clean it or put it straight into the dishwasher!

-vacuuming the house at LEAST twice a week, if not more often. This might be seriously slacking to some people, but it would be a huge feat for me, especially if it happened more than once! But it's something to which I consistently aspire, so at least I'm trying, right?

-shaving my legs at least every other day so they never resemble prickly pear cacti!

-being relentless about having my hair and makeup done before I go out in public

- getting back to making Joe awesome lunches each day. Every day around noon when I realise I have failed him yet again, I resolve to turn over this leaf, but every night I fail to pack, and every morning I enjoy my sleep a little too much, so once again at noon....

- never letting laundry pile up, and NOT leaving it clean but unfolded! I should do a load every other day so it doesn't pile up - wash it, dry it, fold it, and be done! But soon it's been 3 days, and then I might as well wait one more day and do 2 loads, which I MIGHT do, but they don't get folded until 4 days later when I wash another 2 loads, then I have 4 huge loads waiting to be folded and man, I have so many other things I'd rather do than fold laundry... but as soon as I fold these stupid piles, I'm going back to doing one load every other day, and folding it immediately! Then I won't have this mess again, I swear. Somehow, though, it's always the same situation...

- not napping so I can pick up the house while Patrick sleeps. But every time I lay down with him, "just for a few minutes," it's too delicious to get up for oh, say, 2 hours. So the house remains messy, but I'm seriously well-rested!

- not checking my email/blog/facebook/etc quite so frequently, as I will get sucked in and not finish whatever I had started (or wanted to start). This is an addiction I fight daily, and the best way to deal is to avoid it entirely and not turn on the computer. But once it's on... I'll see you in a few hours, world!

- keeping my toenails painted. How can I be cute if I can't even keep cute tootsies? Yet here I am with chipped polish for the 26th day in a row...

- being a better mother/wife/sister/daughter. That entails lists within a list, but it's probably the thing I recommit to the most often.

With that last one in mind, Joe reminded me that he thinks I'm doing a grand job being his wife and the mother of his child by showing up this afternoon with beautiful tulips and even more beautiful (and functional!) purses. I've been dying for something cute and new, and he knows what I'd like better than I do sometimes, so I'm REALY excited to try out my new gifts. Thanks, Joe! I love you, too :)

Monday, May 4, 2009

so sleepy

Kari and Jonathan (sis and BIL) came to visit for the weekend, which was GREAT! Although the guys went to see X-Men: Origins and we all went out for a huge Melting Pot dinner on Saturday, we didn't really do much for most of the visit since the weather was wretched and we were stuck indoors, but during that indoor time we had fun visiting, watching movies, and taking naps. We went to bed late each night so of course we wanted to sleep in as late as possible, which was NOT possible when Patrick continued to get up at 5 or 6 a.m., so we made do with afternoon naps. Poor Joe was "on duty" for Patrick the day he got up at 5, so he was REALLY in need of a nap when the time came, and to help Patrick sleep longer so Joe could sleep longer, they simply slept together. I love this picture, I think they look so much alike :)

Thanks for visiting, guys! We had a great time, and hope those sprouts grow for you!

Speaking of which.... would anyone like some garden sprouts? I mentioned all those sprouts that had sprung, and they just keep coming! I have about 22 tomato sprouts, and no place to put them, but it will make me pretty sad to get rid of something I'm so proud of growing... so if you'd like one (or ten) to start a little garden of your own, let me know! I also have a couple zucchini sprouts that are getting quite large, I need to transplant a few before the roots start growing together in the pot! I hear tomato plants grow just fine in buckets, so you don't even have to till up your backyard - or have a backyard, like we don't right now. I bet zucchinis would work, too, if you had a really big bucket. Finally, I went a little (a lot) over the top and when I saw how well my plants were growing, I went and got more, so now I'm working on two kinds of peppers, cucumbers, basil, watermelon, and artichoke (just for fun, I won't feel too bad if they just don't work out). Keep an eye on my blog if you'd be interested in any of these, because if they sprout like my tomatoes and zucchinis did, I'll have about 5,000 little tiny plants to get rid of (I plant in bulk in the hopes of getting just one!). Thanks!

My model zucchini plants - tall and skinny, with big heads!