Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Ta da!

This is happening!


Cody and I are having a baby!

Can you believe it!?!?

I kind of still can't believe it, even though I've known for about 2 months.

Yes, two months.

You know how I've been tired and skipped blogging days and wasn't funny sometimes?

I was tired and feeling gross.

And for a while I was afraid the baby stole my sense of humor.

It was so hard to keep from talking about the pregnancy sometimes that I just wouldn't talk!

But now we're telling people!

We told our families 2 weeks ago and they were superexcited.

And now we're telling everybody.

That's the fun thing about telling people:
I didn't expect anyone to be quite as excited as we were.

(I mean, you can be happy for people when they celebrate good news.
But you can't be as happy as they are, right?)

Um, sometimes wrong.

Family and friends are absolutely! freaking! out!
In the best way possible.

At one point, I texted Alana my due date and she replied "Love it!"

I don't even know what that means.

But we're thrilled and grateful.

We always knew this baby would be so, so loved. But wow.

I can't blame anyone for being so pumped.

You take these good looks and wit....
(Cody, on the left, and Casey at 19 months)

....and combine it with this sparkling personality and pretty face
Jen, probably around a year old

... and you're bound to get something (someone) awesome.
This is going to be the cutest baby ever! I can already tell.

And I should probably mention that there is just ONE baby.

So, in place of the emails I've been sending our families for the past couple of weeks, I thought I'd just do a weekly baby update here. I promise to try to keep from saying anything gross.

  • I'm 12 weeks and 2 days along!
  • By the way, this is me on Saturday.

  • There's not a whole lot to see. Most of the time, I just look like I ate a big lunch.
  • BUT! I swear, I can feel a little pregnant tummy. It's different from the fatness that came from not working out all these months (I get tired! And it was hot outside!). It's totally where the baby lives. Cody can't feel it. Cody is such a jerk sometimes.
  • Fine, Cody is awesome. He's still trying to find things that I will eat that are not jello and popsicles and bread. We had a very successful trip to the grocery store this week!
  • I decided last week that Cody and I were going to take a trip to the Memphis Zoo because I found a coupon. So we went on Saturday. And Laine and Leah joined us. It was hot and I sat down a lot.
  • The Memphis Zoo sells popsicles in vending machines for $2.25. Tell all your friends!
  • I still really love popsicles.
  • Then Robert made me a really bloody hamburger and I nearly cried. But I always do that when I'm unhappy with meat.
  • Laine let me borrow a dress because mine was covered in zoo sweat...... and Doritos dust and popsicle runoff.
  • I am expecting my pre-Mother of the Year trophy to arrive in the mail any day now.
  • I went to the doctor yesterday and discovered I'd gained half a pound. Whoa!
  • I was told my lab results from my last visit looked great and that everything about me is awesome. Maybe not in those very words, but whatever.
  • We heard the baby's heartbeat again! It's around 150 beats per minute and sounds absolutely glorious.
  • I feel better every week.
  • I am practically out of the first trimester!
  • I read that this is what's going on with the baby: "The most dramatic development this week: reflexes. Your baby's fingers will soon begin to open and close, his toes will curl, his eye muscles will clench, and his mouth will make sucking movements. In fact, if you prod your abdomen, your baby will squirm in response, although you won't be able to feel it. His intestines, which have grown so fast that they protrude into the umbilical cord, will start to move into his abdominal cavity about now, and his kidneys will begin excreting urine into his bladder. (Jen's note: wait, what? It pees on me? We're family, so I guess it's okay. Did I just fail at being not-gross?)

    Meanwhile, nerve cells are multiplying rapidly, and in your baby's brain, synapses are forming furiously. His face looks unquestionably human: His eyes have moved from the sides to the front of his head, and his ears are right where they should be. From crown to rump, your baby-to-be is just over 2 inches long (about the size of a lime) and weighs half an ounce.
  • My baby is like a lime with reflexes!!! Synapses are firing! It looks less like an alien! It's 2" long!!! This baby is so exciting!
  • And lastly, this is the week we're telling everyone! Some people cried a little, some people laughed. Some people laughed a lot. There were a lot of all-caps text messages. Mamaw said she would get out her needles and make something and then I nearly died with joy because the woman who made my little sweaters and booties is making something for my very own baby and I can't believe there's going to be another adopted grandkid lucky enough to love Mamaw. And everyone was very, very happy.
  • And in case you couldn't tell, this baby is very blessed and will probably have the best life ever. Thanks for helping with that.

Friday, August 27, 2010

Let's go play!

I love this weather.

I love my weekend plans.

I hope you have some amazing weekend plans to enjoy this gorgeous weather.

The End.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

What my Thursday looked like

Window washing happens once a year!

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Lazy cleaning tips

I haven't done a cleaning post in forever, so I thought I would do that today.

So. Here are some tips to make your attempts at not being a dirty person unworthy of love a little easier:

Gross Shower Curtain Liner

Has it been over a year? Buy a new one.

Yes, you can occasionally wash it down, but how do you rinse it? You're not going to be able to rinse it off satisfactorily with the shower head. You're going to spray water on yourself, and the floor, and you'll have to wipe that up because you're worried about slipping, and you'll probably get toxic cleaner chemicals all over your arm. Even if you're using borax, you're supposed to be careful because it's a heavy metal and you have to wash yourself off if it makes contact with your skin.

Besides, it's kind of dumb to spend so much time scrubbing a shower curtain liner. Some liners are fabric and can be machine washed every month. I do not have one.

After years of purchasing mold-resistant liners made of the same toxic PVC-laden cheap ones at three times the cost, I bought a cheap one a month ago for $2.69 at Target. It's thinner and dries faster and so far, we're looking good.

Gross Bathtub

There's a borax solution or a vinegar solution or maybe even a lemon juice solution, but I can't recall any of these because I lost some really good saved links a while ago.

What I will tell you is that regardless of whatever you use to clean your tub, scrub it off with a used dryer sheet. I've read this on a lot of frugality websites that recommend recycling floss, etc., but this is a Good Thing because it's really, really effective. I mean it. So spray something on your black mold and soap scum and whatever horrific cooking grease your husband washes off of himself every night (I just don't......ugh) and get down to business with a used dryer sheet. Holy smokes. You will be happy.

Then wash your hands because, you know, toxic cleaner chemicals. Even lemon juice burns!

Grease Jar

Cody's had a bacon grease jar for quite a while. He would store it in the fridge because our kitchen heats up like crazy whenever he uses the oven. It sat unobtrusively in the fridge for a really long time and he'd take it out, measure out some grease for some project, and put it back in the fridge.

He used up all the grease the other day. Rather than place the jar back in the refrigerator like any sane person would do with a juice bottle, milk jug, or bag with one tortilla, Cody just ran some hot water over the jar. As it sat in a bowl. With some measuring spoons. On the wrong side of the sink.

Don't worry, I handled the problem. I ran several gallons and used several squirts of soap on the jar, the bowl, and the measuring spoons. I prewashed all of these items before washing them for real. I also let a great deal of hot water run continuously because if you ever rinse off something with grease, oil, or butter, you need to run a ridiculous amount of tremendously hot water down your drains afterward because if that grease, oil, or butter hardens you will be doomed to a miserable life of clogged drains and bad smells forever.

You can also throw the grease jar directly in the trash.

Believe it or not, I am recommending the quitter's option. Listen, people. Glass biodegrades a lot faster than plastic (because plastic degrades, like, never). And it's not like Mason jars are hard to come by. You can find them for really cheap at garage sales, or for free in a relative's garage. You can even find them on the side of the road. (I have.) For the sake of your sanity, your time, and your drains, I'm going to encourage you to either let that jar sit empty in your fridge until the next time you fry something or just toss it out. Please.

Clogged Drains

#1. Pray.

#2. Dump up to 1/4th of a box of baking soda into the drain.

#3. Slowly pour vinegar down the drain, pausing for when the fizzing (spoiler alert!) comes out of the drain.

#4. Feel like a mad scientist.

#5. Pour in vinegar several times until the fizzing stops entirely.

#6. Try to dig out hair from the drain.

#7. Gag.

#8. Pour in more baking soda and vinegar, followed by very hot water.

#9. Pray.

#10. Drain-O.

Just kidding! Well, not entirely. We've only had to do this once (okay, once in this place). But a lot of people recommend running some baking soda and vinegar through your drains once a month and following up with some boiling hot water just for maintenance purposes.

I like to do this (when I remember) and it's a nice way to avoid the scenario up there.

Greasy Dishes

Spray them with vinegar.

I'm not kidding. I keep a spray bottle of vinegar that I use like Windex and when the dishes are especially gross, I spray them with vinegar. This breaks down the grease a little and then I can take care of a few more things I care about before I go crazy with the yellow gloves and hot water and soap. It really does help. You know why?

Because absolutely everything is better when you use vinegar.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

I brought you a circus

I'm going to try to embed video on here!

No, I've never done that before on this blog.

Yes, I do know it's 2010.

If we don't have flying cars and hologram butlers in this day and age, I don't know why you expect me to go to the trouble of embedding videos from that Youpage World Wide Web site or whatever you call it.

But I'm going to try because I'm a nice person and it's video of an old-timey mechanized circus of hand-carved wood.

Yes, I'm giving you out-of-date blog posts pertaining to events that took place over a week ago.

Stop fussing and try to enjoy the video. I advise you to watch with the sound off because, well, you can't hear much but what you can hear is a little annoying. (Why does everyone have to try to sound knowledgeable in a museum? Why are children so shrill? These eternal questions torment my waking hours.)

I also advise you to forgive my shakiness, jerkiness, and the poor zooming qualities of my little camera. We'll both be happier people if you do.

And here's a minute or so of the inside of the circus tent. The tiny little trapeze people blew my mind. Really.

And if you want to know more about why in the world this exists (aside from the fact that this is just the sort of thing that gets donated to old museums because it's really cool, duh!), check here.

Friday, August 20, 2010

Anniversary party recap

We celebrated my parents' anniversary on Sunday!
I made a banner and Laine brought flowers.

Mo was thrilled.

I really didn't take that many pictures, which was unfortunate.

We all looked pretty cute.

And we had a lovely time.

There was a lot of talking and screaming and laughing.

Then Mom made us clean our rooms, which was more fun than you'd think.
(Guess who saved all her baby teeth and the money? This girl!)

Oh, and we also ate.

Number of pork fillets I've had this week because we were sent home with leftovers:
Three glorious grilled pork fillets.

And here's some roast!
And to the right, you can see some green bean casserole.
Green bean casserole is one of the best vegetable dishes ever.
But only with Mom's recipe.

And this is Cody's carrot cake.

And this is the extra icing.

And this is the cake from another angle shortly before Mom re-iced it!
Mom cares deeply about icing, and I do see a bare spot.

Here's Laine's knee!
The stitches are out. It just looks this way.

Okay, it's healing really nicely.

This......used to hang on our wall and hold all of our hair bows.
These are not all of the bows. Not even close.

Sara found the best treasures in her room.
She's sporting a Mickey Mouse hat, a bracelet that says HOGS in rhinestones, and a Ralph Lauren purse from 10 or 12 years that she plans to revive.

Not pictured: target practice, story-telling, hugs, drinking cokes, giving cards, shouting, whining, reenactments of events, going back for seconds,
Mom and Dad being happy,
Grandmother laughing at us/ignoring us when we got too loud,
Cody freaking out over Sara's perfect brownies,
Robert trying to find a place to nap,
Chad's many disdainful facial expressions,
Laine's score sheet from the 4H bake-off when she got a perfect score for cornbread,
Sara's other purses,
Levi's toy cars,
and..... my baby teeth.

Pink Palace, Part 2

This is a very old jawbone.

Mid-South Mastodon Fossil!

Mastodon model!
It's huge!

Behold, huge feet!

I love fossils.

I don't care what anyone says,
the triceratops is real in my heart!
And in those Land Before Time movies.

Leaf fossils!

Old reptile!

Fish fossil!

Oh man, squirrels used to be even bigger and scarier.

So cool.
I was always disappointed as a little kid (or not so little)
when fossils in stones I found didn't look like this.

And because tree stumps don't look like this in Arkansas.
Okay fine, it never occurred to me.

But come on, wouldn't this be cool to see in the woods behind your house?!

Pretty insects!

Look at this huge gold eagle!

Most uncolorful toucan ever.
But still, that's a really cool beak.

Look at all these owls!
(Sorry, Alana.)

Fun facts about woodpeckers.

More birds.
Note the toucan in the middle.

Little bluebird.

Big rhea!

Gibbon and monkey.
If you have a gibbon, you had better keep it away from me.

The same goes for rattlesnakes.
But check out all those ribs!

Bullfrog skeletons are funny to me.

Oh man, even chimps' skeletons are cute!

This is impressive.

These are Jeff's veins.

Rhesus monkey.



Kangaroo rat!
Like in The Rescuers Down Under!
I am all about the childhood movies today.

Oh my goodness, this is an armadillo looks like underneath the shell!

It just seemed like a fun idea.

They are field tripped out.

This is cat outside the Pink Palace.
Jessi wants to be friends with it.
The cat was pretty aloof.
It's probably thinking, "Psh, you amateurs. I have season passes."

It's probably being nice because it's her birthday adventure.

This is the Pink Palace.
And a wedding.

Can you see the wedding party?
Right as Jessi and I tried to creep out there for some pictures,
some awful Muzac flute music by Kenny G came on.
These people had a wedding at the Pink Palace,
where they blocked off THE BEST PARTS of the museum,
and they thought it would be a good idea to play a recording of some cheesy flute music?!

You can't buy taste. Not good taste, anyway.


Here is Jessi, sneaking away.

And that is the end of our Pink Palace adventure!