Belated Baby Bumpdates: Weeks 33-38

Wednesday, December 16, 2015

It has been quite some time since I have been on here... and for very good reason...
Being mid December, we have done a lot since a few months ago, my last update. Quick rundown: last baby shower, bought a house and moved, had baby, then the holidays began. Okay, so it's not really a rundown but that's what has essentially occurred. The purpose of this post is to finally catch up on the final weeks of pregnancy bumpdates with little Newsom.... Then in later posts (which there surely won't be as much time inbetween them all now!) I will fill all in on the details: birth story, new house, holidays back home, starting our farm, book reviews... all the juicy stuff I've been meaning to write about lately, yet just haven't gotten to yet. Life happens, y'all. We will see how it all goes in this new season- these posts will surely come soon! Onward...

Week 34+3 days..
This was taken as we were all cleaning up from the last baby shower family hosted for us out here in east Texas in September. SO FUN seeing everyone and actually being back in Texas! And not having to leave again! Whoop! It all worked out so that once we arrived in state, there'd be just enough time for showers, house hunting, and moving before its time for baby. And that dress? It's from PinkBlush - which I am so glad I found- this site has the cutest ever maternity clothes, as well as a regular women's clothing "sister shop" - for lack of a better term at 4am! The clothes are basically the same at each, just some are maternity sized and some aren't. The absolute most comfortable clothes I have ever owned!!! I have been very into floral lately, and the fabric on this dress is extremely breathable! A must when you are pregnant through the summer.. especially that Texas heat!

These photos above are the last bump photos I took! Little guy was 38 weeks on October 13th. Six days before he was born. Our little pumpkin!

This photo below was taken with family days before baby was born. We kind of like this one! I don't remember the exact date other than it was literally a couple days or so before we met our little one. Anyway I loved this maternity shirtdress and wore leggings with it- SO comfortable! This was from a Destination Motherhood outlet I found out in CA a few months ago. I only wore it a handful of times but it was an absolute must because I have been looking for a shirtdress for years- literally- and this one can easily be worn with or without a bump! Anyway, it is a sweet photo with my mom, the last one captured with her and the baby bump! At this point I had swollen feet, wobbled, and couldn't really stand for more than a few minutes at a time. And I ate six (or more?) hot dogs within minutes for lunch that day! Which is unheard of! Those last weeks of pregnancy- I seriously could not stop eating. Anyone who knew me growing up was shocked, I usually pick at my food and fill up fairly quick. Baby boy was hungry!

The last 7 or so weeks of pregnancy went by fairly quick but also slow... It really depended on what was happening at the time.  Only the last few days did I seriously wish baby would come now- at my last OB appointment,  I was so swollen, that we went ahead and scheduled an induction a week earlier than my due date, then I went to get a pedicure. Ladies- an absolute must during the last leg of your pregnancy. The sore and swollen feet were relieved for only a couple hours surrounding that wondrous event (I only get my nails done once a year... if ever!) so I knew it was just about time for baby.

 This here is the last ultrasound we got of baby. I didn't realize we would get another 4D so it was definitely a surprise! This was in those last few weeks {October 9th} - just look at those chubby cheeks!

Anyway as mentioned, at the last OB appointment in mid October (I think it was the 14th?), we scheduled an induction for October 22nd. My doctor suggested the 21st but I like even numbers better! Remember the original due date was October 28th? Well, I was already dilated 3cm, so she didn't think the baby would wait any longer than that... And because we live an hour away from the hospital (at that point we were in our own home! Yay!) - and how low baby already was - the doctor preferred for us to be on the schedule rather than drive as baby comes.... But God and our little one had other plans....

{Birth story to come next!}

Our LAST Move (during the 3rd trimester!)

Monday, October 12, 2015

It has been pretty hit or miss around here considering the time I've had to be online, let alone on this little blog. There have been so many other things going on that I've put this on the backburner lately! Which is good for a time... It's been nice not having the number of posts per week or this or that about the blog "define" how I go about my day and spend my time lately- as all bloggers can testify that this happens at times. Even when I'm asked about it (or those bump pictures), I just answer there isn't a time right now to do so with everything else going on- I'll get around to it when I get to it! We have other priorities at this point!

So what have we been up to since we made it back to Texas early August? Has it really been 2 months we've been back home?!! Well... It wasn't exactly up to us when we were to move- we wanted to do so in June, but had to wait till late July. That's just how the military works- getting every last drop out of you until your time is up- so by that perspective, we are so relieved (grateful) that now we have more time for us and family and life. And there's been a lot and not so much going on, all at once...

In short- big picture, here- there's been a few baby showers, seeing friends and family we haven't in years, lots of doctor's appointments and sorting all that out, pre-registering at the hospital, taking and passing a certification test (whoop!), looking for jobs, exploring our new home and town, much house hunting, waiting on a few houses we weren't able to get, waiting to close on the house we did get, moving in (and still moving in) to our first home & now we're on baby watch!

What a mouthful. We closed on our new home September 30th and moved in a few days later once we were able to get our things out of storage. Being nearly 8 months pregnant, I wasn't exactly keen on sleeping on the floor in an empty house (It sure wasn't fun to do so in July back in California, for a week).. So we waited just a bit! Which was hard to do- the waiting continued. We have been intensely house hunting since early August and nearly 2 months later were able to buy/close and move into our home. It was a long time- from the start of the third trimester, literally! The timing for the moving was fun for sure, but we are so glad to finally be unpacked and settling in (even with piles of things on the floor still). Since we've been here for just over a week and a half now... we sure have been busy. Marshall is still working a distance away until he finds something closer, and I am finally able to nest and get ready for baby- who is really due to come anytime between now and his due date on the 28th of this month- it doesn't sound like the doctor will let him stay into November, which is fine by me.

This week on Wednesday we will be 38 weeks, which is actually full term- so that's definitely eye-opening. That day I'm also going to get his car seat inspected- they actually do that kind of thing- because I really didn't know what I was doing attempting to follow youtube videos to put it in the car. I admit that! We are also to the point where I am going to see the baby doctor once a week, to check in on how baby is doing (head down!) and see how I'm doing as we are approaching his due date and impending labor... It's still a little surreal that baby will be here in just over 2 weeks or less or more. We have the bigger things needed for baby in place and are pre-registered at the hospital, but still have piles of books and things on the floor because we are still unpacking and finding where to put things- waiting on more furniture, too. There are a few more baby things we'd like before he's here but I'm not panicking... It's kind of a crazy time and a bit hard to think about baby being here for another week and a half or so, once we will have all of our furniture and whatnot in place (finally!) Maybe at that point I'll panic! Ha!

We are in a more rural area than not- so different from what we were used to the past 4 years living by base- being about 20 minutes outside of town (and a small one at that). Which is so great - and quiet!!! - but also a bit of a distance away from the doctor. Baby boy will be born in the "bigger city" about an hour away from our home, which means that when it's baby time, we will be headed to the hospital sooner than others who live closer may, for that drive alone. Which is totally fine- we are mentally preparing ourselves for that. And it's a really beautiful drive out here in east Texas. We just need to get little details figured out which will come in time. It really feels like it's so far away- maybe because there is a lot we are waiting on and would like to get done beforehand. But then again......
Anyway, more updates (and photos this time) to come soon!

Baby Update etc.: Weeks 25-32

Sunday, September 6, 2015

I know the last post was over a month ago, but that's just how things have been this year- busy. This past month, plus a few days, we have been in-between homes and starting to settle in to a new way of life in the new region we will be calling home... because yes, we are finally living back home in Texas!!
So the weeks since my last post: 25-32, which is this week...that would be the end of month 5 and into month 7...Or about anyhow, depending on how you like to count the pregnancy, since 38 weeks is full term technically. I tend to overthink things like this too, and weeks seem to be a bit easier to go by for me. Baby boy is due October 28, so we have just under 2 months left until he is here! {I have been feeling great! Just into a schedule with eating-still bland foods- and bathroom breaks, and moving much slower.. The wobble-stage has begun...I have to take things slow!}
Week 25... This was taken at the Botanical Gardens in Encinitas (back in San Diego)
Just a couple weeks before we moved...

So we left California on July 31st and were on the road for about a week, since we stopped to see family on the way. At that time we were at the brink of the third trimester... After we were back in our home state for a couple weeks, we had a baby shower planned for Houston! I sure do miss it down there- mostly for its proximity to the beach. I finished high school down there about 25 or so minutes from the coast.. my parents somewhat recently moved into their new home just a couple minutes from the beach. So it was fun exploring their new town and seeing a whole new side to the gulf coast than we knew before! We took family pictures at sunset at a really nice beach there and I made one of them into the "bump" photo... I know I missed a few weeks between this and the previous one but now you can see a change in how baby boy has grown.

It was also our anniversary that weekend of the Houston area baby shower, so we finally were able to have some professional photos taken of the two of us during the family photos my mom planned. We all wore white and khakis- matchy matchy. August 14th we celebrated 4 years of marriage! We drove around Kemah, found some fun new restaurants, and explored the boardwalk and beach nearby. It was a nice quiet day. Definitely a vacation weekend.
So the photos turned out really great, and I didn't know how pink the Seabrook sunsets could get... After all, before I only knew Galveston, and those beaches are pretty filthy (well, the tourist-y ones by the Strand anyway) compared to some of the other coastal towns down the road.

These two pictures are my favorite ones of Marshall & I. I'm thinking one of these would be nice to have on a canvas... Well, I'll figure it out once we move into our new house, but quite a few of these pictures will be framed anyway! You can also notice in these that sometimes it is difficult to see baby bump- as petite as I am somehow baby still hides in there. Certain days he pokes out and moves around more, and others he is sitting really low and far back that it just looks like bloat. He is moving a lot but the way he sits is fairly inconsistent... I've been told by passersby that I barely look pregnant- how could I be due next month?! And I've also been told that I look huge- then they asked where my parents were. Guess we still look like we are in high school, too...

I took a screenshot of the baby app a couple of days ago.. We are in week 32 currently, which means there are only 2 months to go! I've been planning out baby's room in my head and cannot wait till we can get into our house in the next couple weeks to set it all up- and get out household goods out of storage! Later this week we have an appointment at the hospital where baby will be born to get registered there- a room needs to be available, after all- take a tour, look over a birth plan, and do all that fun stuff. There we get to schedule with a doctor and count down the weeks until baby comes. Little Newsom is due in 52 days!
Switching doctor things when moving, especially when it includes switching health insurance, finding the right kind of doctors, being in the third trimester---  has been somewhat difficult... When I was looking at doctors, I was trying to find ones who were on both insurance plans- and near our new home, an hour from where we are now- so that I won't have to switch docs again once we switched plans and moved. The only doctor who was doesn't see pregnant patients for primary care. So I had to just go ahead and switch. But then the new primary care doctor didn't want to send me to an OB and get acquainted with labor & delivery at a hospital---which should definitely be happening by the third trimester, if having a baby at a hospital---just bizarre to me. I know it can be difficult to find doctors accepting new patients at times, especially this late in a pregnancy, but there should not be over a month delay in doing so, especially being high-risk and knowing how closely I was followed in San Diego. SO I kind of took charge and found the hospital I wanted with the specialist OBs that I needed in our new area and went ahead to schedule an appointment to get registered at the hospital- it turns out there were docs accepting new patients, just in a different hospital system. Whew. I wasn't expecting to deal with that!
So anyway, this week we have the baby appointment at the hospital he will be born and I'm really excited!! I was looking at a birth plan I found the other day at and was getting into the mindset of baby coming soon... Less than 8 weeks... We have so much to do! Also I had to look up many of the terms in that plan, because well, I haven't had an OB visit or been to L&D  yet in order talk about birth... Lots of things that go into it that I just didn't know before simply because we haven't been there yet. Ladies, if you are expecting- look at this birth plan!
I have tried to not overthink things and worry about how this transition process is still going, but it's been difficult when we just want to be in our home, be ready for baby's arrival - have it all set up at the hospital, and get into a routine of sorts with work and whatnot (as you can clearly see). We have been out of California for a month and a week at this point and are still in that transition stage, waiting. Which by this point I've learned to (try to) stop asking questions and worrying.. Just let it happen as it comes (and pray pray PRAY) since there's not much I can do-only God knows- other than do what I can for the hospital stuff (which is going) and baby crafts... Speaking of which...
I made our little one a desk chair. Well, he probably won't be sitting in it at all, it will likely just be on a shelf or a bookcase with a stuffed animal sitting in it! There is the sweetest little shop called Vintage Charm near our new home that sells antiques, refinished furniture, and knick knacks/décor... I absolutely love places like that. They also offer chalk paint/furniture classes once a month, so yesterday I took one of their classes and learned some techniques to make old furniture look new. While there I found this sweet mini desk chair for baby's room to fix up!! I just couldn't resist....
I really enjoy the process of refinishing and painting furniture (I've done a rocking chair & desk before too) so I am considering if there is something more I can do with it...We will see how things go! That's kind of been my motto lately, but it's true. There is so much waiting and patience and learning happening during this time of transition that we just have to... wait... and see... how God will provide!

little newsom: weeks 12-24

Wednesday, July 8, 2015

If you've seen the few past posts on this little blog you may have figured out by now that we are expecting! We are having our first child this coming October, and are so blessed and excited to meet him! Yes, we are having a little man. Also, if you noticed the title of this post, we are now at week 24, which is 6 months along. Depending on how you count it or divide it up, we are nearly in the third trimester! (Generally I've seen week 28 starts the third trimester, so almost there anyway) Yes, it has been some time and I haven't quite made time to put it all on the blog yet, at least in more detail other than being excited and a few brief things here and there, but I am now getting around to it. Things have been quite busy around here, as we are preparing for Marshall to leave the military, move home to Texas, find a house, find work, settle in before baby comes, etc etc etc... There are a lot of little details that go in there which we are waiting on. But all will come in God's timing- we will be home in August! Much to look forward to! So here goes the baby post...
As soon as we found out we were expecting, this past February, I made a painting to help announce the coming of our little one. I love to craft and make paintings and thought it was perfect to make this special painting to let all know. I made this in March, and we sent a picture of this to parents and siblings on April 1st to let them know what's going on!

April 1st was Marshall's idea, as I thought it was kind of crude knowing how others (including us, in past years) feel about "announcements" on that day- except ours was real, and that was just the timing of it all. Otherwise I never would have let that happen! Anyway, At that time we were around 10 weeks, I believe, so for a short time just immediate family and close friends here knew. I wanted to wait until 12 weeks, the start of the second trimester, to tell everyone else- so that we did. It was kind of hard to keep it in for a while and sometimes we each let it slip, but it mostly worked! The 12 week photo was taken at the Grand Tradition Estates & Gardens in Fallbrook- it is absolutely BEAUTIFUL and I went there for brunch with a group of other military spouses- fun morning out. This was mid-April.

I wanted to take bump photos every other week so as not to overwhelm my instagram feed or whatnot, and also because I like even numbers- not really a fan of odd numbers. No matter how often you take bump pics, you can see a progression and growth of the little one, but I liked how with every other week the changes were a bit more noticeable. Day to day it doesn't seem to change much until you start to pop around 20 weeks. It just depends on the day (bloat/changes) and how baby is sitting in there. This photo was actually taken around 15 weeks, but since I like even numbers, I put 14+. This is also when I received a call from the doctor's office and they changed my due date (again) and finally scheduled the next appointment. I was waiting for some time on that!

Here in California, desert plants really do well. (Even being by the coast!) All you see around here are palm trees and succulents. So I went to the local Succulent Café for the next photo at 16 weeks. I keep thinking after the fact that my jacket gets in the way of a photo, but it still works. In this photo Little Newsom was about 4 months along. We love avocados around here, so that was my favorite size comparison that time!
At 17 weeks we had our first big doctor appointment down at Balboa, and thankfully Marshall was able to get part of the day off the trek down there with me to see our baby. It was the time of the full anatomy scan, so we saw baby from every angle and every nook you can imagine- they checked measurements on every little organ and body part there is. With this, they gave us a more accurate due date - October 28 - and were able to tell us his gender by that point. (And he is healthy & growing well!!) As you can see in the above photo, by this point we knew his name (even though we didn't get the full boy/girl from a doctor yet) and I went ahead and made him a monogram painting. If you saw my post the other day- we just knew. Or really, I just knew. We are having a boy. As soon as we found out we were expecting, I just knew. There was such a feeling of peace when thinking about having a boy, especially in knowing his name since we were dating (yes, over 4 years ago). No other option!
So... as you can see in the next photo, we are clearly having a boy! The next bump picture was 18 weeks.

At the doctor we were able to see little man in 4D (so much detail!!! What a blessing technology is!), and I framed the best photo we have of his little Newsom face and forehead, put it in a blue frame, and posted that on my personal FB/sent it to family, to let all know we were having a little boy. So exciting! Also- based on the pictures, he is going to be Marshall's mini-me! We can't wait to meet him and see his face for the first time!
I missed the 20 week photo-even though it's the halfway mark; I was starting to feel like every other week was getting a bit too... overwhelming.. with all the photos. And with having two photo updates at 18 weeks, I just went ahead and called it a day, and skipped a photo for the 20 week mark. There wasn't too much of a difference, I thought, but in reality- there was! My friend Erin took the 22 week photo (actually she's taken almost all of them) in front of a pretty canvas at her house. Our little man was the size of a papaya, or a spaghetti squash-depending on if you prefer a fruit or veggie comparison, I think! At this point I was starting to "pop" to some extent, and it was much easier to notice the baby in the belly, if you were a passerby and didn't know previously, perhaps.

And today is the day--- on this day, July 8th, 2015, we are currently at 24 weeks, or 6 months, with our little man. This photo was from just a couple hours ago. You can really start to see that a baby is in there! By this point, if someone didn't know, they soon heard from the grapevine or figured it out when they saw us out and about! I feel like baby was showing most of the time, but in reality it's not until you hit about the halfway mark that baby is noticeable consistently. I can see why some wait that long to announce now! Especially if you are away from family and all. But we are glad we did things the way we did.

Little Newsom is the length of an ear of corn, or the weight/size of a cantaloupe. I like looking at the fruit and veggie comparisons to try to find something more common and that I actually enjoy. Like the other week- he was a papaya, or a spaghetti squash. I love fruit, so I went with papaya. Maybe I just overthink things a bit (which is probably true). Also, now his ears are now sharp enough to hear loud noises- such as our Scruffy pup barking at the mailman, or at those fireworks (it was a long weekend)

So that's weeks 12-24 of preganancy so far with little Newsom... or months 3-6. It is all SO exciting!!! Since we are leaving here fairly soon, I am almost done with doctor's appointments (at least in San Diego). I only have 2 left! This seems a little crazy to me- I've been having anywhere from 2-5 doctor's appointments a month since about March because of this little one (mostly)... It will be an interesting change of pace. Lots to do- new town, new house, new doctors, new jobs- settling into a new little life past the military. We are both very excited and ready for it all to happen, as overwhelming as it may be, and I'm glad that Marshall was able to have these past 3.5 years in service and fulfill one of his life goals. And at that, we are both ready to move on- so now, on to the next adventure! We are overjoyed to meet our little man in October!!!

Quick Recap: 3 trips to DISNEYLAND!

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Within the same year (2014),  I went to Disneyland a total of THREE times! And each was so, so fun. Currently we live just an hour from Anaheim -which is like no drive at all, compared to what it could be, if you know anything about socal traffic -so why wouldn't we? Here are some pictures and snippets from each...

First trip: New Years 2014
On this trip, Marshall & I just drove up to Anaheim and stayed at Disneyland for the day. We didn't want to stay the night yet, because we had 3-day park hopper passes and wanted to divide up our trips. It was a full day, my camera wasn't working, but we definitely did a lot in such a short time!(At this point we were living in California for just under a year... and we finally made it!) Before this, the only other time I've been to Disneyland was in high school band- we marched the Rose Bowl Parade in 2007, and all those involved went to the park for a day!
Second trip: Anniversary/Birthdays 2014 (August)
This trip was definitely more planned! I took advantage of the ITT services on base and booked us a one-night stay at the Grand Californian hotel, connected to the Disney California Adventure park! Other than our honeymoon it was surely the nicest hotel stay we've had, despite it being so short. Such a beautiful hotel which takes so much inspiration from the Redwoods and various national parks in the state, seen in their décor. It was so nice to have short lines to get in the park through the hotel and to be able to go back midday for naps! We sure had fun.
Third trip: Girls'/Family Trip/Cousin's Bday (November '14)
I was so excited for the planning stages of this trip as soon as we found out we had family coming! My little cousin was having a birthday and she was just the perfect age to explore Disneyland and get a lot out of it - not too young, not too old. It was a surprise, too. (Trip consisted of my mom, aunt, cousin, and myself) This time we used the 3-day military hopper pass deals as well and explored Disneyland more than the other park- that's where all the princesses were, of course. We also were able to get pictures with all 13 of them! Love this photo with the statue of Walt & Mickey, and the castle behind us.
This doesn't include the handful of times I went just to Downtown Disney.....
First time: Seeing Maleficent at the AMC when it came out! (May '14)
Marshall was away for a month and Maleficent released in that time, so I did what anyone who lived within an hours' drive of Disneyland would do.... I drove out to spend the day in Downtown Disney! Then I saw one of the first showings of the movie at the AMC there. It was a nice, relaxing, people-watching day. And it wasn't too crazy yet for summer!
Second time: Seeing Cinderella at the AMC when it came out! (March '15)
{Yes, this was at the theatre there... Just believe me it was!}
This time I just decided to head to Anaheim early in the morning to see Cinderella the day after it released- the theatre was packed, as was Downtown Disney in general----this was the timing of spring break, for many. In this trip I also was able to explore those fun Pandora charms and found a brand-new one for my friend Holly. Asking about it gave me a new button: "Honorary citizen of Disneyland." I don't have a picture of that, but it will surely show up on google. How neat! {Anyone else collect buttons from the parks?!}
Some photos from the trips...
"Adventure is out there!" At the California Adventure park, there was an entire camp based off Russell's boy-scout-ness in the movie Up! Love that movie- this reminds me that I need to watch it again.

Their eyes were screens and the animatronics on the cars were so detailed.. It was just like watching the movie Cars! (Also California Adventure)

So cool lit up at night- In my opinion, the only time to go explore Cars Land (in the California Adventure park) Fun that the café was set up as a gas station- you know, because they are cars.

A talking and moving and blinking Olaf on top of the snow on the buildings in Fantasyland.. This was the spot where the Frozen meet & greet was, though I've heard it's moved since then. The last day, as soon as we arrived, we ran to this section in order to get Fastspasses to meet Elsa & Anna. You could see all the dads of little Elsa's were running to get in line as well- those tickets ran out just in the first couple hours (and some little girls were very upset at that!). Hopefully now there are multiple and more efficient locations. It was a little crazy!

A different view of the Sleeping Beauty castle...

Teapots!! So fun! The Mad Hatter store was next to this, which housed some of the most unique Mickey ears and hats! Some of which you can only find there. These teapots are where I met Pluto & he sat in our teacup when I was at this park in high school. Such a fun photo- if I can find it somewhere that is!

Entrance to Tomorrowland & Matterhorn bobsleds- neat shot!

Storybook canal- this slow water ride was a nice little break from all the walking. Kind of really enjoyed it!

Love the balloons! Had to get a creative-like shot (I try)

Neat water & lights show... Frozen was center stage!

I had to at least attempt to do the smolder with Rapunzel & Eugene...

We had to get Fastpasses to meet Elsa & Anna.. they have their own private room and everything (they are so popular- as previously mentioned).. Not sure if they've changed how they do meet & greets now. Elsa said that she still hasn't exactly approved of Kristoff & Anna's wedding yet.. I asked!

I asked Mickey to strike a pose after we got a group shot with him in his house in Toontown!
I may have another post later on with more details about where and when we were able to find all 13 princesses and get photos and signatures... But that's for another day. (In the meantime the site Disneyland Prep School has everything you need to know & more! There is also one for WDW)
There was so much more to these Disney trips than just a couple photos! In total, during the past 2 years I've gone to Disneyland for six different days and spent some time in Downtown Disney during all of those days plus a couple more. It's been fun and I can say now that I am perhaps Disneyland-park-ed-out.. And ready to move on to bigger and better things...  Disney World in Florida! I wonder when we will be able to make it out there.... So much more to see!

this sweet season

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

I just knew it from the start. When we started talking about having a child a few years ago, I just knew our first was going to be a boy. Maybe it was a mother's intuition or a nagging feeling or maybe I just convinced myself so much because I thought it would be best (just right) for us, knowing us - a firstborn son. But I just knew it a long time ago. And in fact, we knew his name before we were even married - if you knew us then, while we were dating, you may have a guess or two on why or how - but we aren't sharing that yet. It was kind of an unspoken agreement- we only had to bring it up briefly once, and it just made sense. We know his name, and we know we will have a boy - so why wouldn't our firstborn truly be a boy? There is just something about all of this... how wonderful it is! When we were driving back from the doctor's appointment a few weeks ago, where we sat through an extremely long anatomy ultrasound - everything was measured and checked to see how our little man is growing (he is perfect!) - there was no question about it. We immediately started calling him by name. And there were a few times when we thought to sit on it and see if it's right... but it didn't take long to realize that it is.
It's funny in some ways, because I started calling him by name as soon as we found out we were expecting. Because we've known the name for so long, and because I've just known, without a doubt - anyone else ever feel that way? - that we were having a boy, I've been calling him "little man" and by his name for months and months.
Interested in a painting like this one for your nursery?
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We are now at 21 weeks - today! - with our little man, which is just over 5 months along. It is incredible to think that we are already halfway to seeing his sweet face for the first time! (Other than on an ultrasound!) When we were at the doctor's appointment a few weeks ago and saw him, I was really surprised that we were able to see him in 4D as well - we were able to get some good pictures of his sweet face. He is definitely a Newsom baby - the cheekbones and forehead tell it all! He already takes after his daddy, wiggling his fingers in the womb - "spirit fingers" - just like he says he did when he was little. It is really exciting to think of what his personality will be like - which family members he will take after - even what color hair he will have. It could be red, brown, or blonde... We carry the traits of all. And will his eyes be brown, green, or blue?? I wonder!! How sweet it will be, the day we meet him!
Already, baby showers are being planned and registries are scanned and a few clothes are sitting on a shelf. Already we have a convertible crib, glider, and changing table. We even have his first little Aggie jersey (ebay) and Aggie hat (thanks mom!) - as well as a onesie with the state of Texas (Etsy!) on it, because it's all kind of a given., knowing us... All of our parents are just over the moon and excited for this new season, and my mom even has some baby gear ready for him, whenever we visit- which will be nice not to have to carry around some things in travel! (like a jumper, playpen, swim gear, etc) At this point, knowing how much time we still have to meet him, we feel set now on prepping for baby.. Once we are home somewhat soon and get into the third trimester around that time, baby prep will be in full swing again. It will be so fun to be able to put together his nursery with the help of family around, and to be back and able to see everyone in driving distance - and a couple more baby showers, too.
This is such a sweet season we are entering into now! It is hard to explain how it feels knowing that you carry a little life inside of you - a little perfect heartbeat, which sounds so different from mine with my history - and knowing that he is the first of the next generation of our family... The first grandbaby! We feel so blessed to finally be given this gift of a little life, and everyday give thanks to the One who made it possible (Psalm 139). Our season of waiting is over, and this new season of expectancy is here! Knowing and hearing time and again the wonder from my docs that I was a miracle baby makes me even more grateful for this little baby I'm blessed to be able to carry and bear. Yes, having anywhere from 2-5 doctor's appointments a month is truly exhausting and a bit daunting, but it's worth it.  (There's another one tomorrow actually!) Baby and I are being well taken care of, and the constant check-ins (and long drives that go along with them) might be tiresome but definitely put me at ease knowing that we are both doing well. And a bonus, we get an ultrasound each month because of this! Getting to see him more often than not is definitely a blessing, and we are so excited for the day this fall when we will meet him for the first time and look into his sweet face!
You are so very loved, little one.

Hello June!

Monday, June 1, 2015

There's been quite a bit going on lately... And I haven't been around this little blog as much as I was planning on. So a few things we are up to...
Right now I'm in the midst of a spring cleaning overhaul of sorts- books, craft things, old clothes, and things we (I) have just collected over the years. I've always seemed to have a hard time parting with things- I keep pictures, old wrapping paper, construction paper, knick knacks, around for who knows how long because I might need it one day for a craft! So this past week I have taken four boxes of "craft supplies" and narrowed it down to one quilting/sewing box, one other crafts box, and one small box of paints (and canvases). There was much more than just a couple Rubbermaid tubs or organization bins worth of it- say three LARGE packing boxes worth- so I felt pretty accomplished at how much bigger the laundry room/storage room felt after I finished that! Though there is still a lot to just sort through...Since I finished the closets and bookcases, it's really only the laundry/storage room left. I don't know how many times I've gone down the road to the park n ride lot to drop off boxes of knick knacks and clothes and books to donate! (There is a donation drop off container there! So convenient)
We have our property in Texas and are looking into buying a house in town- we have basically found what we wanted, we just need to wait to get it checked out and all.. And then if we are sure, move forward sometime this summer. We will see how all pans out in God's timing but it is really exciting to think about buying a home soon! Since we are able to move home once Marshall gets out of the military sometime in the very near future, we are starting to look a little more seriously about where we are living! (I know, still vague, that's just how it goes waiting on the military)
Katherine Newsom's photo.Our little Newsom is today at 18 and a half weeks along, and we are just so excited to meet him this October! Our blessing is growing and growing, and that baby bump is getting to be much more noticeable than before. I am now past that chubby/bloat stage... Honestly, I feel like I did start showing early on but that was more based on how much I ate that day, even though some of it was maybe still a bump! Especially being more petite than not, little one is easier to notice. He is the first grandbaby in our immediate family so there is much anticipation! It will also be good to be in our home state for the end of the pregnancy (God willing), and to be around family to help and visit with more often than not! God's timing is never what we think we want, but is always what we need! We are very thankful for His Hand in all of this, as we can already see.
{And we do have a name but that's a special secret for a variety of reasons, to most-- we've known his name for a long time, since we were dating, to be honest. I think we can keep it quiet for a little longer! And yes I already made him a monogram painting!}
Other than all that, I am still painting (finishing up pop art I started last year..), taking certification courses online (so yes, I'm still in school), and in the midst of a lot of waiting for doctor's appointments, still. Last month was much slower with only one appointment, but this month (June) I have FOUR! Again! By this point I am used to going into the naval hospital so often, especially because I need to be watched closely in pregnancy by my different doctors, but it does get to be a lot and often overwhelming. Good news about this- we get two different ultrasounds of our little boy this month! Spoiled!
I would also like to ask for prayers- I've been looking at jobs/outlook for that time when we are moving home and have been nervous about finding something so late into the pregnancy (by that point) being high-risk --- or with a newborn! So this has led to a slightly different search and I have found a public school online in Texas, which I applied to, and interviewed last week! I am currently waiting for an email about a second interview...and it's SO suspenseful! Having this job would be an incredible blessing and would fit just right into our changing family dynamic, because I would be able to teach grades 3-5 in a distance-online-classroom using blackboard and the like (basically, it's set up how my school was with Liberty Univ.). Meaning I would stay home with our little one while working, and once a month or so travel the state (road trip!) to meet with students and do testing and the like. It's good news all around, other than the waiting part-- to hear back. We seem to always be in a season of waiting! So we would really appreciate prayers for this- each of our job outlooks and how everything will fit into the changes going on in our little family! We know that in His time God will bring us the home and jobs and orders we need, so we are trying not to get ahead of ourselves! I still struggle with this. The unknown is really stressful at times!
The other week, we took a road trip up to Sonoma/San Francisco/etc areas... California is really a beautiful place! The entire area was overcast, rainy, and cloudy most of the time, so we weren't able to get as "pretty" pictures as we have seen previously, but we saw it! That's another thing checked off the bucket list. We didn't spend any time in the city- just drove through it- so there were a few things there that we didn't see. Such as the Ghiradehlli restaurant, Stinky Rose (garlic) restaurant, the fisherman's wharf, Alcatraz, and the Walt Disney Family Museum. But that was my list- and since we didn't really care for the city- we drove right past it all. Who knows if one day we might vacation to northern California again.... eventually! We did drive on the Golden Gate Bridge which was cool! Yet maybe one day we can walk on it too, there is a lot to see with different plaques and memorials along the way about those who built the bridge.
 Later I'll post more of all the little road trips we've taken and activities and such.... Mostly pictures. I've been very sporadic with this blog because of everything going on with us right now and trying to figure out how this little blog will fit into it all, while also trying to keep a focus. I don't want to be all over the board with the writing so I'm thinking this will be more for family, faith, and travel updates-which makes much more sense than what I've done in the past, sponsoring and recipes and posts "just because" - without a set purpose.

On Mother's Day

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Well, since the brief announcement in the post the other week, I'm just going to get right into it. There will surely be more posts specific on other topics pertaining to expecting, but this one is going to touch on my thought's on Mother's Day, seeing as this past Sunday was so. It was a full day yet also a bittersweet one for me, and soon you will see why...
The past few years have been a really hard time on this day. There are quite a few reasons involved, but one big focus is the question- what constitutes a mother, what's the definition? Because yesterday, after church, I was left wondering, as I have many times before. Perhaps its a sacrificial love for others, and serving as a mother-figure to little ones, whether its family or at your work. And are you still a mother even if you child was adopted? Oh, yes, without a doubt- we are all adopted into God's family by the grace of Christ, too, we must not forget that. I was also thinking that the longing for a child- that deep, God-seated dream of bringing a child into the world to teach to love and serve God above all else- if there's a longing, with or without fruition, are you still a mother? And what if you lose a child, whether in utero or any day after his or her first breath?
Always, even through a tragedy- with care, with longing, with loss, and with life- you are still a mother. God has not forgotten you! This matters. Know this, ladies!
I was a little taken aback at church yesterday because of the situations touched on here which were not touched on in a mother's light during the service. Now I understand that some of these topics are just hard to talk about- the waiting, the loss- but they can't be ignored, and some big part of me felt that. I left feeling a little uneasy, maybe even cheated, if that's even justifiable. But maybe I  was thinking too much on it, because I have had the past few years to think about what Mother's Day truly means. Just as I have had the past few years to think about how we wanted to announce to all when the time for blessing came....Yes, I was definitely thinking too much on it..
How many ways are there to become a mother? There was a time in the service where mothers in the congregation stood up, based on: how young your children are, how old they are, how many you have, how many generations are under you, if you adopted, how far you traveled (if an out-of-towner)... but there were still types of mothers who were at the least not touched upon. I can only imagine how many in the congregation fall into this category: those who are in hurt, who have lost, who are in the midst of waiting, and who are expecting. You are all mothers too! Longing to be a mother or longing for a child that didn't take breath or longing for a child you have since lost or longing for the day soon when your home will grow by one (or two, or more)- you are ALL still mothers! Maybe I was thinking too much into it, but I felt like these types on motherhood are still too precious to be ignored. And they are.
Now I understand that these topics of loss make us so uncomfortable- what is there to say? how will anything I say ever be enough? And I personally can't answer that- I wouldn't even be sure to say if anyone who has gone through that pain can truly answer that. Only God can fill the void, and even then, you're left wondering. God chooses you to be a mother to this child for this amount of time, whether your child leaves the womb without breath or is lost later in life or lives a full life... Or if your child is still growing in the womb, by God's grace....You are the perfect mother for this blessing. That cannot be ignored on mother's day! I am reminded... "for everything there is a season" and we are not in the place to understand the ways of God- what he has ordained for us and our children in this life.
The further we dwelled in this past season of waiting, the more I read and heard and noticed of women who were in the midst of loss, whether friends or others bloggers, and the more I was simply aware. And after being in the midst of waiting, for years, we know how difficult mothers and fathers day can be during this in-between. Anyone waiting on a blessing and regaining composure to some extent after a loss by any definition, know how difficult this time of the year can be. On Mother's Day this year, expecting, I felt confused as to why those who are expecting a blessing soon were not acknowledged, as least as greatly as those who have. And on past Mother's Days, I was taken aback by how the losses were just brushed past- even if they are hard topics- and the longing to be a mother- that was somewhat ignored as well. This maybe made it more difficult to get through. And it's not so much that any of us in the waiting or expectant want a "prize" of sorts, but it's more that we just would appreciate to be acknowledged and to know that we are still loved in this capacity--- because there are many different paths to becoming a mother, they should all be spoken of. And when you have been given that gift of grace, a child growing in your belly, and it isn't acknowledged - that may be even more painful than the years in waiting. But maybe it can be taken too personally, yes, it easily can---and that's where grace comes in (Thank you Jesus for Your grace yesterday!)
We have some incredible friends and family back home who have shared lots of love with us lately during this season of expecting, and sent us kind notes yesterday! It was such a thoughtful gesture and we really appreciated it. It is such an incredible feeling to be in this place now, where we are expecting our first little blessing this coming October, and we are in a season of joyous waiting to meet him or her. Yesterday was a graceful day of reflection and it was such a warm feeling when I received messages from loved ones wishing a happy expectant-mother's day -- I surely felt loved and appreciated and acknowledged. After the years of waiting and uncertainty and not knowing, it felt full-circle in ways of where we are today. Last year on mother's day, I never would have guessed that we would be expecting at this point- I just had no way of knowing, and really didn't know what to think on it. A big part of me didn't want to expect anything and "plan" for something that we have no control over, and in the end be disappointed- another year. (Because in the beginning I did that, as I'm sure many of us do) Maybe that's just the season of waiting getting to you. There is no way of knowing God's plans he has laid out for you and your family... And maybe that's for the better. Yes, it's definitely for the better.
So wherever you were yesterday, and whatever season of life you find yourself in at this moment, know that you are not ignored. It can be so easy to feel uncomfortable, lost, bitter, even betrayed (in a sense of the word) when your losses or your aches for a little one aren't acknowledged to the extent you were expecting. Maybe some of us have high hopes for what this day could be- a day of remembrance, a day of reflection, maybe even a day of regret of what could have been (not that you could have done anything about it... but that feeling doesn't leave you. It's a hard line to walk, once you have that desire). But know that even on this day which brings mixed feelings for so many- you are still a mother. Whether it's a mother-to-be-one-day by any means or you have and have lost. You are precious in God's sight, as He sees all the hurt, the ache, the anticipation. And He is right there with you. Let's accept the gift of grace upon grace which God gives us, so freely, no matter the season we are in.
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