Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Goodbye, 2014!

Yall, tomorrow is 2015 and today is my last day of work until I come back from maternity leave!  The past year has been one of the most memorable years of my life thus far for sure.  I was already feeling high on life in the beginning of the year and then we found out we were pregnant.  2014 was the year of the baby bump!  Chris and I spent most of the year getting ready for Cooper and parenthood.  I'm more in love with my husband than ever (which I didn't think possible) and I can't wait to see him become a dad in 2015.  I can't wait to see my parents as grandparents and Kaylen as an aunt.

Tonight I have to pause and thank God for the people in my life I love so much and all the new things I got to experience and more than anything for this new life.

I wish you MANY blessings for the coming year and a safe and happy New Years Eve!

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Monday, December 29, 2014

I Got Emotional for Christmas

Hello, all!  I hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas.  We sure did, even if I wasn't feeling up to par.  Naturally I would feel bad on my favorite day of the entire year.  But one makes do!  I DID notice Christmas Eve that my nice Christmas pajamas didn't fit quite the same as the year before...

Christmas was just a really great day.  Mom made breakfast and we opened gifts in the living room per tradition.  My big gift this year was the glider I've been wanting!  Cooper now has all of his furniture and it really completes the room. 

Speaking of Cooper, his due date is swiftly approaching.  January 9th to be exact.  The closer it gets the more anxious, excited, stressed, nervous, scared to death, irritable, happy, and just all over emotional I get.  I never thought I could feel so MUCH at once.  My last day at work until I return from maternity leave is Wednesday.  We've been talking about it and planning for it for months and now it's not near, it's HERE.  If he stays in until his due date I'll be extremely happy to have over a week of days to get the last things done and just have time to relax, destress after the holidays and prepare myself.  We have our weekly doctor appointment Tuesday morning and I'm SUPER anxious to see if there's been any progress.

I realize this post has been a big ole jumble of nothing, but...that's kind of where I'm at!

To my Ten on Tuesday faithful, I'm going to go ahead and skip tomorrow and start fresh in 2015!

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Monday, December 22, 2014

Why My BIRTHDAY Weekend was Awesome

-Saturday marked my 27th orbit around the sun. And good grief it got here fast. If you had told me last year at my 26th birthday lunch while blowing out my candle that I'd be a whopping 37 weeks pregnant at my NEXT birthday I don't know if I would have believed you. But here we are! My nearest and dearest spoiled me per the usual and we had lunch at Firebirds. Instead of cake I got a piece of some of the best cheesecake I've ever had with a candle. Perfection. Chris got me the book I've been wanting! Dorothy Must Die. I can't wait to get into that one.

-After lunch we went to the mall and piddled while Kaylen got her last Christmas gift.  The mall the Saturday before Christmas makes for EXCELLENT people watching.  AND I got the coke icee I've been craving.  For the win.

-THEN after killing time at the mall, Chris and I along with the parents and grandparents went to church for their annual Christmas program.  It did not disappoint.  Everyone on the stage is so talented and you can tell they've been putting things together and practicing for months.  We also got to see the brand new traditional sanctuary the church has been building for the past year. and take communion in it together as a family.  THEN after church we had dinner at McAllister's.  After that full day I crashed and crashed hard as soon as we got home.

-Yesterday was No Shower Sunday.  But that doesn't mean I didn't leave the house.  No no.  I got up, brushed my teeth, put my hair in a sloppy ponytail, threw on some concealer and mascara and hit up Target.  Because where else would you be at 8:30 on No Shower Sunday.  I got the rest of what I need for my hospital bag, including but not limited to some ginormous feminine products.  Sorry for the TMI but #joysofbirth from what I've been told.

-I got a good nap in with the kitties that afternoon (naps are my favorite) and piddled around and watched the first half of Titanic while packing my bag and at dinner time Chris and I went to Applebee's.  HE had been craving one of their burgers.  Go figure.  While the waiter was taking our order it hit me that I had an Applebee's gift card!  Chris actually high-fived me.

-After dinner we came back home and watched Sin City: A Dame to Kill For since we watched the first one Friday night.  It was just...meh.  We thought it lacked the wow factor of the first.  But anyway...

So I had a pretty perfect birthday weekend.  Perfect for me anyway.  No need for big extravaganzas, or parties, or an actual cake for that matter.  Just a nice couple of days with the people I love that I know love me just as much.

On a side note, I can't believe Christmas is THURSDAY!!!  Tonight I'm joining the family for our yearly trip to the theater to watch Christmas Vacation!
For my faithful Ten on Tuesday participants, I'm going to go ahead and call it and say don't expect Ten on Tuesday to be up and running this week.  Enjoy your Christmas festivities! 

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Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Ten on Tuesday - Baby Rush, Final Ride, and Mythical Creatures

one. We got SO much done Sunday. We went to Buy Buy Baby and got Cooper’s mattress, an extra base for Chris’s car and a bathtub. We moved the furniture to where we want it in the nursery, and Chris opened boxes of randoms (bottle warmer, drying rack, diaper genie) and put them in their designated spot. He took charge and got it done and I am SO grateful.

two. I happen to agree:

three. In all the baby hoopla I nearly forgot I turn 27 Saturday.

four. Today is another baby appointment and Kaylen is going with me. She’s crossing her fingers for a nice, long ultrasound.

five. Super sad face because one of our favorite shows, Sons of Anarchy is completely over.  I'm still in mourning for all of my favorite fictional characters that died.
Yes, I cried a little too.
six. Another sad/annoyed face because I have to get my drivers license renewed today and get my new address and married name put on it.  (I've only been married 7 1/2 years.).  Yay for long lines and mean ladies behind the counter who hate life.

seven. I swear there are birds trying to nest in our bedroom window.  Which I might be cool with if they didn't try to set up shop at 6:00 on frickin Saturday morning.

eight. It's a little nerdy but I really like this collection of mythical creatures around the globe for some reason.

nine. I've felt a little lost since finishing Gone Girl.  What's everyone reading?

ten. Oh and one more little thing. A sneak peek from our maternity session! I’m in love with the few I’ve seen and can’t wait to see more.

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Monday, December 15, 2014

Gifts for the Cat Lady

Gift guides and wish lists are a dime a dozen on blogs this month.  And rightfully so!  I put together a Christmas wish list last year but this year with the new addition on the way my personal list is super small (a book, a bath robe, blah blah blah). But I LOVE gift guides and still wanted to put one together. So I chose to create one for the weird girl in your life who has an affection for felines.

7. Cat Key Covers found on Cupcakes and Cashmere (similar options here)
11. Cat Cufflinks (similar)

I'd be tickled to receive any of these this Christmas.  =)
Happy Monday, friends!

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Thursday, December 11, 2014

Baby Update - One Month to Go!

Lots of exciting things going on!

-We had maternity pictures taken and I can’t WAIT to share them when we get them back!
-We hit the “one month left” mark Tuesday! Tuesday was just a full baby day for us. We both took the day off and started with our regular appointment (everything is fine and showing no signs of labor). After that we met with a group of birth planners that is a complimentary service by the hospital we’re using. They asked all kinds of questions. Are you considering an epidural or a natural birth? Would you like the lights dimmed? What kind of birth experience are you hoping for? Do you use Essential Oils? Is there anyone in particular you don’t want in the room? We preregistered for our visit and even filled out paperwork for his birth certificate. THAT was a surreal moment when the form asked what the full legal name of our baby would be. The girl that helped us plan was super sweet and helpful and she gave us a tour of the maternity floor and showed us exactly where to go when the time comes.
-After birth planning was lunch, touring another daycare and a quick trip to Target to get some little essentials. Cooper now has swaddling blankets. =)
-That night (with my supervision and reading instructions) Chris put together his Rock ‘N Play. I don’t know why but THAT hit me hard. NOW it’s real. NOW that the Rock ‘N Play is together and rocking and making baby music I realize that in a month there will be a baby in it. I love being pregnant but I’m so ready to meet him, and hold him, and love him.

Weight Gain: Up 26 pounds from pre-pregnancy weight. Still right on target.

Clothes: All maternity all the time. Plus a few of Chris’s flannel button-ups for good measure. And Dad let me borrow an Alabama sweatshirt of his that I wore over leggings Monday. Best. Outfit. Ever.

Symptoms: Really the only new thing is some dizzy spells. Nothing major. But I did almost have to grab ahold of Dad’s arm to steady myself while standing and singing at church last week. I could say extreme heaviness, but I’m almost 36 weeks pregnant! I’m supposed to be heavy!

Movement: All the time. A sharp jab here, a roll there, a superman punch to the lady parts here…

Cravings: Drinking my weight in chocolate milk. And lately I want icees! I discovered Taco Bell has a Dr. Pepper Vanilla Freeze and it’s the bee’s knees. I didn’t mean for that to rhyme but it’s funny how things work out.

Sleep: My brand spankin’ new diffuser and my Lavender/Peace and Calm combo is knocking me out at night but not KEEPING me asleep. So tonight I’m going to try putting some on my pillow and toes. Just a little voodoo. Don’t mind me.

Stretch Marks: Nope. Hoping my tummy holds out for one more month. I’d be very thankful.

Missing: Sleeping in any position other than my sides.

Nursery: I’ll just say….it’s coming together. Hopefully… I mean, maybe by January 9th….

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Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Ten on Tuesday - 30 Days, A Huge Mistake, and Essential Oils

one. Today is ONE MONTH until Cooper’s ETA! Chris and I took the day off together and are focusing on baby. We have a doctor appointment, followed by an appointment with the birth planning people, followed by a tour of another daycare followed by doing SOMETHING in his nursery.

two. YES.  Please let her sleep.

three. Over the weekend we got our maternity pictures made! The weather cooperated beautifully and I can’t wait to see them.

four. I had my hair and make-up done for photos (because I am TERRIBLE at anything other than everyday hair and make-up) and it was a day of beauty firsts for me! I had my eyebrows filled in, my face contoured, and even had fake half lashes! I felt like Kim Kardashian only less self-absorbed.

five. Hahaha.  Hopefully I'll handle it better than this poor cat:

six. I’ve figured out after working with men another reason the good Lord in His wisdom gave the task of bearing the children to women: the men just couldn’t handle it.

seven. I finished Gone Girl.  Furious at the end but still an awesome read and now I can't wait to see the movie.

eight. Do people really believe cops are just running around killing innocent people for fun?

nine. Not what I was expecting to see!

ten. Someone very generously gave me an Essential Oils starter kit as a baby gift with a diffuser and everything! I’ve been sleeping with a mixture of Peace & Calm and Lavender and I love it. Anyone into Essential Oils?

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Monday, December 8, 2014

Christmas Kid

I just happened to glance at my stats on blogger and noticed that my last post marked my 600th published post! Whoa. Just wanted to throw that out there.

It’s December. I know. Shocker, Alyssa. My favorite month. I, like my old man, am a Christmas junkie. I love it. Love everything about it. The lights, the colors, the music, the movies, the togetherness of it all. Not to even mention the reason for celebration to begin with. I love this month so much it flies by quicker than any other so I always try to savor it. This Christmas in particular is one I want to hold on to for as long as possible.
This is my last Christmas where I get to be a kid. I know, I know. I’m 26 (27 later this month) and I’m not really a kid anyway. But my parents have always done Christmas big. They always did everything they could to make Christmas magical for Kaylen and I and still now spoil us more than we deserve on the 25th. Christmas to me is at Mom and Dad’s house, sitting in the living room tinkering with our new things, drinking hot chocolate, eating ham, and watching A Christmas Story on repeat. I told Chris that this year I want to spend as much time there as possible Christmas day just soaking it all up because next year it will be completely different.  This is the last year where I can sit back and let Christmas happen around me.
Next year I will be a PARENT to an almost one year old baby boy. It will be MY job to make Christmas magical. Cooper will open gifts (as best he can) in OUR living room floor. We’ll introduce him to some of our traditions and make some new ones.

-One of my favorite traditions is the yearly town Christmas parade. We won’t be able to partake this year since this is the one day we’re actually traveling to see family (only about two and a half hours one way). But I’ve loved this since I was a kid and have even been in it a few times with school and the church we attended forever!
Say hello to the senior class' 2nd Alternate on Homecoming Court.  =)
-Christmas is not Christmas without Dad handing out the gifts that morning. NO ONE else can do it. He empties the tree skirt and then we all open at the same time. Kaylen always rips into hers while I like to take my time and make them last! It makes me feel all warm inside thinking about Chris on his hands and knees under the tree at our house handing CT his gifts from “Santa”.

-The church I attended since infancy used to do a yearly Christmas Eve service with the telling of the Christmas story and hymns and at the end everyone in the sanctuary would light a candle and sing Silent Night. I looked forward to it each year partly because I just enjoyed it and partly because each year immediately following the service we had our big family get together at my grandparent’s house. My family attends a different church now and luckily they put on a spectacular Christmas service. It’s not Christmas Eve but it’s just as well. AND there’s even candles and Silent Night at the end.

What are some of your favorite holiday traditions?

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Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Why I Like Being Pregnant

As of today I have approximately 37 days until Cooper’s ETA and I leave the hospital with a baby in my arms and that baby goes home to live with us for the foreseeable future.

All I heard before I got pregnant (and a lot during pregnancy) were absolute horror stories about this nine month incubation period. Whether it was a stranger at the grocery store telling me how she was nauseous morning to night for the first three months or Kim Kardashian whining to Ryan Seacrest about just how miserable it is with her swelling feet and exhaustion. Heck, even the Duchess was hospitalized with the most extreme morning sickness.
I’ve even seen some women say, “any woman who says she likes being pregnant is a liar.”

Well guess what: I like being pregnant.
I feel very much like a pregnancy unicorn or just the luckiest girl on the face of the earth with SUCH a smooth sailing compared to a lot of the stories I’ve heard. Granted now at eight months I’m uncomfortable MOST of the time, sleep sucks, sneezing hurts, my heart races more than usual, I have trouble putting on socks and shoes, and there was that leg cramp from hell Thanksgiving night, I still LIKE being pregnant and if you could promise me all my future pregnancies would be this easy, I could absolutely see myself being a surrogate.

I like being pregnant because:

-Everyone is super nice to you. People apparently love pregnant women! It’s as if everyone feels the need to take care of them and therefore their unborn. If they’re not asking, “how are you feeling today?”, “do you need anything?”, or “can I carry that for you?” they’re tilting their heads and going, “aww!” or just telling you how great you look and that pregnancy “suits you”.

-Feeling baby move is the most amazing feeling. I always imagined it would feel like a goldfish swimming around a fish bowl. Even though now that he’s taking up more room the movements are stronger and sometimes just down right hurt, I still like feeling them. It makes me feel close to him (like we could literally get any closer) and I’m quite positive I’ll miss those kicks and punches most of all after he’s here.

-It’s the perfect excuse to relax more. It doesn’t take much for me to get tired and A) Unless you were active before you got pregnant, which I wasn’t, you don’t need to exhaust yourself anyway, and B) sometimes you don’t feel like doing anything except being still and converting oxygen to carbon dioxide.

-I feel closer to Chris than ever before and he takes such good care of me. If he’s this attentive and cautious with me (like calling me at work to let me know that I need to be SURE I’m using a hand rail whenever I go up and down stairs so I don’t fall), how much more cautious will he be with our 6-7 pound baby?

-People are always offering you food. This needs no explanation.

-I dig this new round shape. (Plus it’s a good excuse to buy new clothes.) For someone who’s always been on the thinner end of the spectrum, I wasn’t sure how I would feel about the growing belly. I was relieved when I realized I LOVE looking pregnant and I’ve really enjoyed maternity shopping. I held onto my pre-pregnancy jeans for months thanks to the belly band and a lot of shirts for even longer than that, but I reached a point where nothing fit right and DANG IT I just HAD to buy some new clothes. =)

We still have a few weeks to go and I know I’m only going to get bigger and more uncomfortable. So maybe in three or four weeks I’ll hit that wall of OMG GET HIM OUT NOW, but for the moment I’m still actually liking being pregnant (not lying) and soaking it up like a sponge.

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Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Ten on Tuesday - Back At It, Christmas Ornaments, and Cat Barbie

one. I'm alive and I have NOT had a nervous breakdown contrary to what you may have thought after reading my previous post. Now back to regularly scheduled programming. =)

two. Kaylen and I went to see Mockingjay Part 1 Wednesday night and it was awesome! Really exciting all the way through and I loved all the new characters. But I must admit it, Wednesday all day long I was just as excited about getting an iccee as I was the movie.

three. Today all I'd really like to do is lay in bed, drink chocolate milk, and watch HGTV.

four. Sunday night we put up our Christmas tree (with a little help from Dad on the light stringing part) and we got to hang a very special ornament for the 2nd year in a row. Last year was our first Christmas in our new house and this year we're waiting on the stork to visit!

five. If you have not read Gone Girl yet, smack yourself. Most all engrossing book I've read in a long time.

six. You wish you were this fancy.  The longer you look the funnier it gets:

seven. THE WALKING DEAD SPOILERS HERE!! Oh. my. stars. We heard that after reading the script for last night's episode Norman Reedus cried for an hour. Now we see why. We KNEW someone was going to die and we had it narrowed down between Beth and Carol. Chris guessed Carol would somehow sacrifice herself to save Beth. About halfway through the episode I asked Chris, "what if Beth dies right before she and Maggie get to reunite?" And BOOM! And I NEVER guess the endings right!

eight. Me when someone tells me childbirth hurts.  You're kidding.  It does?  This is news to me.  I'm going to need a minute to process this.

nine. After having to cancel our maternity pictures because of crappy weather a couple of weeks ago we are trying again for Sunday. Keep your fingers crossed for nice weather!

ten. Roll Tide.  That's all.

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