One For The Rhode joins a New England family between states as they document events , happenings and the humor that accompanies life.

…Any Day Now…

We are officially entering “Any day now” territory with this pregnancy. I can’t wait to meet the little ninja who’s been kicking me for the last 9 months! I can, however, wait for the whole getting-him-out stuff. Labor and I are not friends.

 

We’ve planned and prepped, lined up friends and family helpers and gone over countless scenarios with Lexi so she knows what to expect in any case. I’ve been nesting like a maniac, which I never did with Lex. The last thing I have to do is hang the curtains in the baby’s room but I’m so clumsy nowadays that getting on a step ladder is equivalent to climbing Mount Everest. Not going to happen.

 

I’m pretty darn proud of the baby’s room – curtains notwithstanding – check it out!

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The pack and play will move into our room when he arrives and the rocking chair will move upstairs when he’s a few months old and sleeping in his crib.

 

Things I’ve Said This Pregnancy

I’m entering month nine  and can’t wait to meet the little guy who has been keeping me up at night… so he can keep me up some more, in person.

Until then, here are some of the things I’ve found myself saying over the past eight and a half months:

  1. “Oh, so these are cankles”
  2. “I’m hungry” – Usually heard between the hours of 2 a.m. and 11 p.m.
  3. “Excuse me, where’s your restroom?” Every damn day
  4. “My child will never – (insert the atrocious behavior my child will most certainly do in two years) – .”
  5. “I definitely need this diaper wipe warmer”
  6. 1 p.m.: “I love feeling the baby kick!” 3 a.m.: “STOP KICKING!”
  7. “Hmmmm, should I wear yoga pants, leggings or sweats today?”
  8. “Help me up?” Every damn day
  9. “I can’t see my feet!”
  10. “WAAHHHHHHHH” – Always accompanied by tears, usually brought on by a 30 second TV commercial.
  11. “It’s all about balance.” while pinning pregnancy workouts and eating fistfuls of candy corn.
  12. “Can you tie my shoes for me?”
  13. “There should be pregnant parking spots here.” Mumbled anywhere there is a parking lot.
  14. “Arhhh, Guhhh, Rghhh…” Noises made when attempting to adjust positions.
  15. Donuts really should be their own food group.”
  16. “I think I could do a natural birth.” – watches delivery video – “How soon after I go into labor can I get an epidural?”
  17. “Can I get some extra pickles please?”
  18. “OK, so I guess I waddle now.
  19. “Do you think they allow wine in the hospital recovery room?”
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One more month!

6 Things I Forgot Happen When You’re Pregnant

We had my daughter young, not “teen mom” young, but I was 24 and the first among my friends to get pregnant. We had no base of knowledge for pregnancy and every bumpy experience was new.

 

Fast-forward nine and a half years to finding out we are expecting again. It has been so long since I’ve been pregnant I forgot all the “interesting” things that take place in those nine months when my body is held captive by a tiny, adorable, invader. 9 ½ years is a long time between pregnancies, here’s a list of things I forgot in that time:

 

  1. Bloating

Everyone knows you gain weight during pregnancy. Everyone has also heard the recommendations for gaining between 25 and 35 lbs through the course of your pregnancy. What they don’t tell you is that those lbs are not all “baby weight” there is so much bloating.

 

I’m talking bloat on top of bloat. Like your engagement and wedding rings? Find a safe place to store them for the next 9 months because sausage fingers are a truth. Favorite pair of shoes? Unless they look like something Ronald McDonald would have in his closet kiss them goodbye.

 

  1. Vivid Dreams

I guess this one doesn’t happen to everyone, but I for one have incredibly realistic dreams. And not fun ones either. I can’t fly or breathe underwater or anything cool. I usually have a very realistic dream that I leave my baby in a Target cart in the parking lot and drive away. Then I wake up in a cold sweat completely convinced that DCFS is knocking on my door with the baby at 3 am to arrest me for negligence.

 

So much for catching up on sleep before baby’s arrival.

 

  1. Bleeding Gums

 

OK, I know this is gross. I also know that it all could be fixed with rigorous dental hygiene, but, if I’m honest, flossing for me is more of a do-it-when-I-remember-it thing than a part of my twice-daily brushing routine. My dentist hates me.

 

Anyway, pregnant women are way more susceptible to infections and germs – including gingivitis, which translates to bloody gums. I’ve increased flossing and Listerine swishing which has stopped it. Just another glamorous bonus of growing a child.

 

  1. Exploding Boobs from Hell

Most people refer to these as “Tender Breasts,” but I think my description is more accurate. Boob pain is one of the earliest signs of pregnancy but no one really tells you how painful it actually is. During the first trimester even awesome water pressure is your enemy. Your soon-to-be baby bags should be treated with the utmost delicacy to avoid massive discomfort. Luckily this eases by trimester two, but it’s a doozy while it lasts.

 

  1. Rapidly Expanding Bump

For the first 5 months of pregnancy I was stuck in what I call the Pizza-or-Pregnant stage. While my belly definitely started getting bigger, most of my baby weight found its way to my now ample (see: HUGE) butt and the aforementioned Exploding Boobs from Hell. Somewhere between weeks 22 and 26 my bump appeared out of nowhere and shows no sign of slowing. Gone are the days of belly sleeping and full meals that I can still move after.

 

  1. Alien Gymnastics

Once the baby starts getting big enough that others can feel his movements, he will definitely be using your uterus as a tumbling mat. As I write this, my littlest is currently mistaking my ribs for a xylophone.

 

I love feeling the baby move, and seeing his mystery limbs make an appearance as he stretches. My husband on the other hand is completely freaked out that there is a tiny human inside of me trying to get out. He is just waiting for THAT scene in Alien to happen and prove him right. In the meantime, my 9-year-old has taken to mocking him by following him around the house yelling “Touch the Belly!” This delights me to no end.

 

As we round out the 3rd trimester all sorts of soreness and stretching are taking over, making me even more eager to meet this little guy who’s already altered our lives so much.

 

Thoughts are with Orlando – and a Nation Hit Again with Senseless Violence

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This morning we woke up in a country where there was yet another mass murder. This time, targeting members of the LGBT community. The shooter took the lives of 50 people, more than 50 others are struggling to heal physically and our whole country is trying to heal emotionally… again.

 

We were watching the news as they announced death tolls, the shooter’s name and information about him, his family and how the community in Orlando was reacting, when my 9-year-old daughter turned to us and said “If I’m ever in a shooting, I’m going to hit the ground with a loud thud and pretend to be dead so he’ll think he already got me and move on.”

 

I looked at her for a second and felt tremendous sadness. I wanted to say “You’ll never have to worry about that, people don’t target kids.” But, that’s not true. I wanted to say “You’ll never have to worry about it, we’ll never be in a place where this happens.” But that’s not true either. I wanted to say “You’ll never have to worry about it, not just any lunatic can walk in and get a gun to do evil.” But that’s definitely not true.

 

What I said was “Good plan. That’s exactly what you should do.”

 

I’m still tremendously sad.

Guess Who’s Back, Back Again (Hint: It’s not Slim Shady)

Eight years ago we hightailed it out West in search of golden sunshine and never ending summers. We found that! Along with amazing friends, educational opportunities and new career starts for both Matt and me. It’s been an amazing life out here, and an experience we’ve been so grateful to have.

But after eight years, two degrees, one dog, two apartments and lots of homesickness we’re heading back to Rhody – for good! Matt, Lexi and I are so excited to move back – although less excited for the cold weather and shoveling-induced backaches. Please come with us, Sunshine?

We’re coming home in July, six months pregnant and just in time to avoid any last-minute spring chills, and couldn’t be happier about it!

    Here we come!

Here We Go Again!

Almost 10 years ago we found out we were pregnant with Lexi. It was scary and exciting and scary. Also scary and scary. Fast forward to the fear taking a back seat to parental survival. There’s no time for fear in parenting – they smell the fear and it only strengthens them.

We’ve been busy over the past 10 years. We moved across the country. Matt got his MBA and started a new job. I went back to school and also started a new job. Needless to say, expanding our family was not the first thing on our minds, well, not the first thing on all of our minds.

For the last six years or so Lex has been asking, begging and bargaining for a sibling. This Easter we gave her a big surprise! Pay no attention to the video cutoff – we were all crying and needed some familial celebration pronto!

It’s a very SoCal Christmas

Word on the internet has it that New England experienced some nice California Christmas weather this year. Our friends back East were posting photos from the beach and temperature update in the 60s. We spent our 7th California Christmas doing the usual – turning on the gas fireplace for ambiance, opening presents and gathering with good friends for equally good food – also enjoying weather in the 60s.

This year’s Christmas was a little smaller than usual because we are budgeting for an exciting change (more on that in the coming months). Because of the budget and the fact that our charming daughter only wanted Santa to “Make it rain” we went the route of experiences rather than materials. We got Lex a few gifts that she could unwrap – books, crafts, card games, GoldieBlox sets – but her two big presents this year were memory makers – tickets to Chill on the Queen Mary and Mamma Mia playing at the Pantages next month.

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Chill on the Queen Mary is how Californians experience cold. We pay to tour indoor ice sculptures telling the story of Ebenezer Scrooge and tube down hills made of ice. Then we walk back into the sunshine to ice skate on a manmade frozen pond in the shadow of an historic cruise ship. After that we get back in our cars, turn on the AC and talk about how cold it was for five minutes in the Ice Kingdom. A true winter wonderland

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The frigid Ice Kingdom

I hope everyone had a Christmas as delightful as ours!

Happy Acorn Day!

Acorn Day is back! And, while we strangely didn’t encounter any acorns , we did have a great time exploring O’Neill Regional Park during the fun fall festival.

Lexi makes a new friend

Lexi makes a new friend

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Acorn Day is an annual event sponsored by OC Parks to encourage kids to connect with Orange County’s nature scene. It’s a fun day for kids – and a hot one for parents. They’re were all sorts of tents set up with animals (tortoises, horses and snakes), crafts, a stage for Ukulele performances, face painting and a butterfly enclosure!

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The highlight of the day was when this happened:

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It was a fun morning, but after standing in the sun for so long we’re both ready for a nap!

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Palm Springs Labor Day Extravaganza

OK, so maybe “Extravaganza” isn’t the best word to describe our weekend in Palm Springs, but it has more punch to it than “Relaxation by the Pool.”

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One of my favorite things about living in Southern California (besides the undeniably AWESOME year-round weather) is that there are so many things to see and places to stay within driving distance. Matt was in Rhode Island for Labor Day weekend this year and I decided very last minute that it was a perfect opportunity for a girls’ getaway with my two favorite females, Lexi and Sunny!

If you’re not using Hotel Tonight, you should be. It’s a great app that offers deeply discounted hotel rooms at the last minute. I booked our stay through Hotel Tonight on Thursday for Friday and Saturday at Miramonte Resort in Indian Wells and got a killer deal!

 

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I picked Lexi up from daycare earlier than usual and surprised her with the trip – pup and bags  already packed and loaded.  We hit the road as soon as her excitement died down.

Because it was a holiday weekend traffic was worse than usual – it took us three hours to get from our apartment in Orange County to Miramonte, but who could be mad about traffic with this face looking at you the whole time?

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Hotel staff was great at check in, and as soon as we settled in our room, someone arrived with treats, bowls and a doggie bed for the pup. The doggie bed was meant more for a chihuahua than a lab, but she made the best of it.

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The Miramonte Resort is known for its beautiful mountain view from the pool and it did not disappoint! After a quick trip to the local dog park, we settled into poolside chairs and spent the day lounging. The pool was stocked with beach balls and lots of kids, which is nice for a mom who would rather lay in the shade then play endless games of Marco Polo (guilty as charged).

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That night we ate outside at the hotel restaurant. Lexi broke a glass and had to drink out of a sippy cup. She was not impressed, but being the good mom that I am I took plenty of pictures. Just building character.

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After an al fresco dinner and quick nighttime swim, we hit the hay- she was exhausted from all the swimming and floating and diving and I was exhausted from watching it all. A quick stop at the Cabazon Outlets concluded or getaway. Because what girls’ weekend is complete without a little shopping?

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