Wednesday, August 31, 2011

The Name Game

I am 20 weeks pregnant and even though my husband refuses to discuss name choices until he knows whether the baby is a boy or a girl, I still want to get them down on paper.

I am 99.9% sure this baby is a girl. I just have a feeling based on how this pregnancy is going. I have felt completely different, haven't been as sick or tired and have felt pretty good! Based on that, my body has either adjusted to being pregnant, or it's a girl. I vote for the latter.

At any rate, these are my favorite name choices. Jason hates almost all of them but that's okay. I have my opinion and I am allowed to like them.

Girl Names

Josephine (Josie for short)

Boy Names

William (Will for short)

Those are my top three names for each. Here is the problem. Sophie is beautiful but paired with Swanson, it just sounds too "sing-songy". Will is great, but you know when you have a William, people are going to call him Billy or Bill. Both of which I HATE. Even though Jack is a simple, short name, people still feel the need to give him a nickname: Jackie. I loathe this and cringe every time someone says it.

Based on how long it took us to come up with Jack's name, I have a feeling we will be waiting until the last minute this time too. We fought almost up to the bitter end. I desperately wanted to name him Emmett but my husband just couldn't fall in love with that name. Instead, he compromised and said we could use Emmett as a middle name and what about Jack as a first name? I immediately fell in love.

Just like last time, we will be keeping this baby's name a secret. Likely it won't be any one of the names above because like I said, my husband hates almost all of my name choices.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Day One

Yesterday Jack and I went by our house to see the progress of the demo. He was super cranky after I woke him up from a nap at the sitter's house. He didn't calm down or stop crying until we got to the house and he got to explore the chaos. Don't worry, I didn't let him play with nails or eat anything toxic.

I get giddy just looking at these pictures. It's fun to watch a job in progress and dream about what it's going to look like when it's complete.

Look at this bathroom! Half of the burgundy wall tile is gone. I saved a piece, because I am weird like ,that, as memorabilia. Maybe I will frame it to show just how far we have come with this house.

Does anyone know what this box in the bathroom is? I didn't inspect it too carefully but it looks like an electrical box of some sort.

Down to the studs! Currently our toilet and pedastal sink are sitting in our living room. Classy right?

There isn't much going on in our bedroom yet. The baseboards and window trim are gone. Since there wasn't any carpet to rip up there won't be a whole lot to show here.

The living room. Look! The wall heater is gone. Jack had a blast exploring and playing with the stuff on the floor. Apparently he had thrown a Spongebob toy in the wall heater because he found one on the ground.

Another shot of the living room and hallway. I can't believe how much space was made just by removing that wall heater. Look! There's Jack running through the house!

I love this shot of our toilet sitting in the living room next to where the wall heater used to be.

One more shot of the living room with the window trim gone.

The backdoor. The door trim is gone. All of the baseboards and trim/moulding are being replaced so they match and don't look so old and beat up.

I can't wait to see what today brings. I have a feeling the carpet will be gone and possibly some stuff in the kitchen like the backsplash and countertops. I will be curious to see what condition our hardwood floor is under the carpet. If it's in good shape, I will feel bad about laying new floor over the original oak flooring, but again, because of budget we couldn't justify paying a few extra thousand dollars to have it refinished.

Monday, August 29, 2011

Demo Day!

Today is demo day at Casa De Swanson and I thought I would post some lovely before pictures. Huge amount of sarcasm on the word lovely. This is going to be a picture heavy post so bear with me.

I plan on taking pictures daily to see the progress but I don't plan on posting daily! I don't want to overwhelm people.

The thing I am absolutely most excited about is the destruction of this burgundy tile in the bathroom. It wouldn't be so bad if the old homeowners grouted the tile correctly but they did a sloppy job and the lines are uneven.

Exhibit A: Bad grout lines

Exhibit B: The entire bathroom covered in burgundy tile.

In defense of the old homeowners they had a clawfoot tub that broke and pulled the plumbing out of the wall which in turn cased a flood. So in the haste of repairing they probably didn't care too much about what the grout looked like.

There isn't too much exciting stuff going on in the bedroom other than new flooring. Yes, we could have refinished the existing floor, but this would have added thousands to our budget. It wasn't in good shape either.

Exhibit C: The bedroom with its worn flooring

The living room is going to have this bad boy wall heater ripped out! Woo hoo! It's the monstrousity on the right of the picture. And that ugly gross carpet is being ripped up and new flooring installed.

Exhibit D: The living room with the soon to be gone wall heater

Exhibit E: Gross carpet. The cats use it as a clawing post. And one of our cats has a sensitive stomach which makes it impossible to keep carpet clean.

The kitchen! Bye bye worn gray laminate countertop and backsplash! Hello beautiful new counter and tile backsplash!

Exhibit F: Countertops. If you look carefully at the edges, they are orange from old age. It's time.

Exhibit G: The kitchen in its entirety

I am truly excited to see the transformation over the next few weeks. My house will never be so empty again that's for sure. Once we move back in it's going to look like a whole new house.

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Moving Day!

Well, the time has come. Our house is (mostly) packed up and ready to be moved to our little POD out in front of our house. Jason's dad will be here at 10:00 before the heat of the day is too intense.

I am planning on taking pictures of them working their butts off. I can lift some things but I have already been told under no circumstances to lift anything heavy. Whatever, I am not disabled. I can help.

The thing that makes me the most nervous is spending three weeks at my in-laws. I get along well with them but I also haven't lived with them for any amount of time. Vacation, weekends at the boat, etc. That is the most time I have spent 100 percent involved with them.

I cannot WAIT to see the transformation of this house. The plan is for me to come by every night to feed the cats and clean their litter box and to take pictures of the progress. Week one will entail the bathroom demo and putting up new tile and drywall. Week two will entail everything else! Week three is an 'extra' week in case our contractor runs into any problems or thinks he needs more time to complete a project.

God speed Swanson family. I will need all the luck I can get in these upcoming weeks. Oh and did I mention that I might need to fly to Denver during all this? Oh boy.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Random Stuff

* Well, Jack woke once last night around 3:30 so I will consider him sleeping through the night for two nights in a row!

* Toddler eating habits drive me bonkers. My child does not like much protein or much of anything really so I try to give him something new and two things he likes for dinner. Tonight? Bean and cheese burrito, corn and oranges. He ate the oranges, the corn and about three bites of burrito. I know he won't starve, but seriously? He will eat one day right?

* I am 19 weeks today. Woot! We have our "big" ultrasound on September 2nd.

* This weekend we move completely out of our house for 3 weeks. Our remodel is starting and I am nervous. Not nervous that it won't be done right, but nervous that we will be living with my in-laws for three weeks. Hopefully we won't all drive each other insane.

* I am stoked for my upcoming trip to the Oregon State Fair. Jack has never been so I hope he really likes it. I think the animals are going to be his favorite. My favorite? All the terrible, unhealthy fair food. Funnel cake, mmmmmmm.

* I have been bad about cooking these days. I have a post started about a recipe I made a couple of weeks ago and I can't seem to find the motivation to finish it. Moving in with the in-laws who like to wait on us hand and foot is going to be challenging. I won't be able to cook while I am there.

* I still haven't talked to my mom. It's been since May. There is a whole big long story behind this, but I think she is mad at me for whatever reason. She doesn't know that I have a new job, how my pregnancy is going or how Jack is doing. The very last thing upsets me the most.

* We went to Enchanted Forest this weekend and Jack had a blast! He loved running all around and he especially loved the big slide. He went on three times and probably would have kept going if we didn't move on to the next exciting adventure.

* Jack's speech has really exploded. He has started saying the following words: Go, ow, choo choo (for what a train says), baby and he sings the E-I-E-I-O part of Old MacDonald. Although it just comes out "oh oh oh oh oh".

That's about it. Life is pretty busy, which is great!

Monday, August 22, 2011

A Sleep Update

Because sleep is important to me and it's been about 2 years since I got a full night of uninterrupted sleep, it's time again for a sleep post.

Jack's sleep has gotten significantly better. Ever since I started putting him down at night awake but drowsy, he has been putting himself to sleep. There are some nights when he cries and I have to go into his room to comfort him or I have to pick him back up and rock him again or give him more milk, these times are growing less and less. I am still waiting for the magical night where he sleeps through the night. Granted, my husband usually takes over the night time shift, but I still hear every little noise in our tiny house so I wake up too.

The past few weeks, Jack has been waking up about 2 to 3 times a night. Last night? He didn't wake up at all. Wait, what? I should count this as sleeping through the night but since he was dead dog tired, I don't. I think it was probably a fluke. Let's see if it he does it again tonight. If he does, then I will officially say he is sleeping through the night.

When he does wake up at night, it's generally after about 5 or 6 hours of solid sleep. He goes to bed at 7:00 and generally wakes up around 1:00 or 2:00. My husband usually goes in and gives him a hug and Jack lays right back down and goes to sleep again. I think he just needs reassurance that someone else is still in the house. Or maybe he just needs a hug. We are very lucky that usually he just needs a hug and goes right back to sleep. I know some parents have to rock or nurse or feed their kiddos back to sleep.

Now that I have posted about Jack's apparent good sleep these days, tonight he is going to sleep rotten. Cross your fingers that I am wrong.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Paci Fail

Last night we tried weening, or starting to ween Jack from his pacifier/bah/paci. Big.Fat.Failure! I am not sure if he's teething or didn't feel good, but he wailed. And wailed. And wailed. The bedtime routine went fine and normal. But when it came time to pop the paci in, I gave him the one I had cut the tip off. He definitely did not like it. He got confused and then angry and started crying and squirming around for a new paci. I held strong.

Down to bed he went and with a little crying, he went to sleep. He slept for a grand total of 30 minutes and then woke back up crying. Jason, who happened to be home last night, finally came into my bedroom and asked "Where are his pacis?" At this point, I didn't want to hear my little guy crying anymore so I told him where the good pacis were stored. That seemed to calm Jack down for a little while, but he still woke up several times crying.

Me thinks there are some toofers coming through. Now is probably not the best time to break him of his paci habit. We are moving out of our house in two weeks which is going to be a big disruption of our life. Maybe once when we are back in our house and settled, we can try again.

I honestly feel like a terrible parent. Listening to him crying like that broke my heart. It wasn't a normal "I am pissed off" cry. It was more of a "Mommy, why are you punishing me?" cry. I wanted to cry right along side him.

Poor baby. I think I can let him have the paci for a little while longer...........

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

18 Month Appointment

Yesterday was Jack's 18 month well baby check. Not only did he do great but the appointment reassured me that I am doing something right.

His stats:

34 inches (90th percentile)
25.8 pounds (48th percentile)

His pedi was pleased with his speech and how many words he is saying. She said that anything between 4 and 20 words at his age is perfect. Jack is at the high end of that range so I can stop worrying. His speech was the only thing that I was concerned about, mainly because he doesn't pronounce words correctly all the time.

Despite the long wait at the doctor, Jack was in good spirits. He was interested in all the things the doctor and nurse were doing. This is the first time that he didn't cry when they checked his ears or put the tongue depressor in his mouth. His tubes look good and are placed correctly with no sign of infection.

We have a healthy boy! That was pretty evident while watching him climb the play structure and interact with the other children. He is such a ham and is starting to really imitate others. When one child would yell or screech, Jack would do the same. While annoying, I consider that a learning milestone so I am happy when he does stuff like that.

He received two booster shots and I am not sure if it was the shots or just being tired, but my child slept from 7:15 to 3:00 without waking up! I am sure this trend won't continue and I am certainly not taking it for granted but boy was it nice!

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Things I Love

This is a post about things I love. Because, let's face it, we can all use a little happy.

* When my son grabs a book and climbs in my lap for me to read it.
* Starbucks Caramel Macchiatos. I may or may not buy one every morning ; )
* My car. A Ford Escape. Best 20 grand ever spent.
* My family, duh. I feel this is too obvious of an answer.
* Pancakes at Biscuit's Cafe
* Sleeping in (which comes very rarely!)
* Yankee Candle Macintosh scented candles
* Animal and baby videos on America's Funniest Home Videos
* When I ask Jack for a kiss and he comes at me with an open mouth. It cracks me up.
* Having no more morning sickness with this pregnancy
* Facebook
* When Jack is really interested in something, he opens his mouth really wide.
* Pretty much every cute thing my son does.
* The fact that my new job comes with very little drama. Soooooo not what I have experienced in the past. Love this!

I am going to try and make an effort to bring this topic up again. Back when I kept a journal, I made a point to write five things every night that I was either grateful for or that I loved. It's such a good way to remember the good things rather than focusing on the bad.

Another Similarity

I frequently check my blog to see what "milestones" I had with Jack and when. I was curious to see when I first felt him kick for sure. I do remember it was a Friday and I was at work and when I looked back into old posts, I determined it was at 17 weeks and 1 day.

Yesterday was 17 weeks and 1 day and I was hoping for a repeat milestone. The day came and went with nothing.

Today, I felt the baby kick for the first time. 17 weeks and 2 days! I can't believe it is so close to when I felt Jack for the first time. Isn't that crazy?

I know it was the baby and not gas because it was three little thumps in the same exact spot. Go figure, that is exactly what I felt with Jack.

Seriously, this pregnancy is so similar in some respects but so different in others!

Friday, August 5, 2011

Uhhh Yes It Was a Surprise

I am not sure when it became okay to ask someone if their pregnancy was planned or not, but I got asked this yesterday. I was so caught off-guard that I didn't know what to say other than the truth.

Scene: I was at the grocery store briefly after work to buy some milk and cereal.

Cashier: How are you? How is that cute little boy you have?
Me: He's doing good. He is going to be a big brother actually.
Cashier: Oh really? How old is he again?
Me: 18 months. He will be almost 2 when this baby comes.
Cashier: Wow, was this a planned baby? That seems like a short time period between babies.
Me: Uhhh, no it wasn't planned, but we are more than happy.

Yikes! How uncomfortable. I am an honest person so when asked, I tell people. But I didn't think it was really okay for an almost stranger to ask.

While I have said before that this baby was a surprise, that doesn't mean he/she isn't very much wanted. When I found out I was pregnant, I was in a state of shock for at least a day. Not because I didn't want the baby, but because it took 18 months to get pregnant with Jack. We did the whole planned timing thing and with this one, it honestly took one time. I don't mean that to be hurtful for anyone who has difficulties conceiving, I really don't. Another thing that I was in shock about was that our house is so small and I didn't know how we could handle another baby, or how we could afford another baby in daycare.

After the initial shock wore off (with huge help from my husband who was also shocked, but very happy), I became excited. I get to experience the baby stage again! This time around, I was determined to enjoy pregnancy and try and be more relaxed when the baby came.

It's amazing how my mentality changed literally overnight. One day I was in shock and the next I was already in love with my baby and wanted desperately for him/her to be healthy. So even though this baby was not planned, we definitely WANT this child.

Back to the comments from the grocery store cashier. I didn't think it was unusual for babies to be born approximately two years apart. My brother and I are two years apart. I have a friend who has two babies under one. My mother-in-law is one of 7 siblings, 5 of them born within 5 years of each other (5 under 5, wow). And, am I okay to be slightly offended that I was asked if my pregnancy was planned? Asking this question is almost like asking how much someone weighs, or if they breastfeed, both of which are uncomfortable questions to be faced with.

I suppose the point of this post is that yes, my child was a surprise, but nonetheless, we are excited and can't wait to meet our new little one. Secondly, don't ask a person if their pregnancy was planned unless you are good friends, and even then, it's awkward.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011


While I don't have many cravings this time around (yet), I do have some pretty noticeable and strange ones.

I have been craving red meat like crazy. Steaks and cheeseburgers are sometimes all that I want. When I was in Denver the last time I ate red meat for dinner every night and it was divine. I must be slightly anemic since I usually don't crave meat in any form. I was borderline with Jack so I would not be surprised if I was again. Even extra iron tablets don't seem to help.

I am also craving vinegar based stuff. If I make a sandwich, I load it with mustard. My go-to sandwich the last few days has been sliced cheese and mustard. That's it. Pickles are also another vinegar based food that I want. I could (and have) eat pickles straight from the jar. I keep buying a huge jar and it is usually gone within a few days. The only downfall to this is the salt that they must contain. At least pickles start out as a vegetable!

In my third trimester with Jack I would drink orange juice like it was going out of style. While I am not in my third trimester yet I imagine I will have some funky cravings.

If anyone knows why I am craving vinegar, let me know! It must be some sort of vitamin or mineral I am lacking.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Jack is 18 Months

I have a baby that has gone from this:

To this:

I love this picture because it shows just how active he is all the time and that face is priceless. He smirks a lot which usually means he is up to no good.

What Jack is up to at a year-and-a-half:

* He is active. Moving all the time. He is still not the type of kiddo that sits and plays with toys. Instead, he is much more interested in running, climbing, getting into things, climbing some more and jumping. I keep thinking he will surprise me one day and just sit and play.

* One of the only times he is quiet is when I am reading to him. He will often go get his favorite book (First 100 Words) that has pictures in it. He will turn the pages and ask "Dat?" while I tell him what each object is. He can identify almost every picture in the book if you just ask him where xxxxxx is. It's so cute to see his brain working.

* We have a picky eater. While he has his favorites and will eat readily when they are served, he doesn't much like trying new foods. Right now, and these change on a daily basis, your favorites are any kind of fruit, especially pears, ravioli, spaghetti, and Crunchin' Crackers.

* You sleep exclusively in your crib now (Halleluah!). You still wake up about 3 times a night but at least you are sleeping in your own bed. This has been a life saver for mom. She gets better sleep and even if you don't want to admit it, so do you. You go to sleep around 7:00 and wake up around 6:00. Dad still brings you to bed with him for an hour in the morning while I shower, but that is just fine with me.

* You have a pediatrician appointment on the 15th, but I swear, you have grown in height and weight. I kept telling Daddy that I didn't think you are heavier but the last few days it's been harder for me to carry you so I bet you have put on a pound or two. Your 18 month clothes, which were too big for you a month ago, are fitting you just right now. You wear 18 month clothes and size 4 diapers.

* The absolute favorite thing of your's is to play outside. It doesn't matter if all you do is pick up rocks and sticks. You are definitely an outside boy! We have a small pool in the backyard for you to splash in but you are more interested in just running around and exploring. If I try to bring you back into the house you usually will throw a tantrum.

* Sesame Street has become your favorite show. It used to be Mickey Mouse Clubhouse, but lately, you are much more interested in Sesame. You especially love Elmo and Monster Clubhouse. I don't think I have seen you so entranced in anything!

* We are working on identifying body parts. You know eyes, nose, mouth, ears, head, feet, belly, belly button, bottom and a couple more. Even though you can't say them, you definitely know what they are.

* Speaking of words, you say about 15 different words consistently. I have just recently discovered that your paci is called "Bah". Not sure where that came from, but if you say "Bah" it means you either want a bottle or your paci. We are trying to wean you off both though, much to your dismay.

I am sure I am forgetting to put some important things in here but you are growing so much that it's hard to remember everything! You continually surprise us with just how much you know. Every day it's something new and we get overjoyed to see your brain working!

You are loved by all buddy. Keep up the learning and growing! You have a little brother or sister that is going to be looking up to you soon.

Monday, August 1, 2011

Mish Mash

I am not sure why but every time I type that title, I think of the giant in the Mickey Mouse version of Jack and the Beanstalk. He pronounces pistachios like "mishmashmios". Meh, I am weird.

* Our weekend was awesomely busy. Being that I work from home now, I get a wee bit stir crazy during the week. To counteract it, I like to go out and do "stuff" during the weekend. This weekend, we did the following: Went to the farmers market, got Jason a new phone, went to Target and Kmart in search of a play structure but settled on a pool, went to Enchanted Playhouse so Jack could burn off some energy, went to Ikea to get my new desk and chair and then out to dinner at Buffalo Wild Wings.

* Jack has been sleeping pretty good the past two months. He still wakes about 3-4 times a night but he has been sleeping exclusively in his own crib. Last night was a different story. He must have had an upset stomach because Jason or I had to hold him the entire night. He was screaming and crying and obviously wasn't feeling good. Jason sat with him on the couch, I sat with him on the couch and then finally, I brought him to bed with me at 3:30 where he passed out cold. Poor guy.

* I am almost 16 weeks and officially wearing maternity pants. I was able to squeak by with my other jeans, but now the bellah is a little too poofy to be able to do that. Jason took a picture of me last night and I look more pregnant at 16 weeks with this baby then I did with Jack at 23 weeks. Yikes!

* We are going cloth with this next baby and I am overwhelmed. It's so so so overwhelming to know which diapers to buy, but we are starting out with pockets. So far I have purchased a Fuzzibunz and a Flip. Thanks to Erin's awesome posts about cloth diapers, I am really doing my homework. I want to get about 8 more covers and 20 inserts before the baby comes. I also have a diaper pail liner bookmarked on Amazon that comes with a wet bag. And I also need to get a sprayer to clean the poo. Seriously, I am a smart person, why am I so overwhelmed?

* Want to see my fancy new desk? It's not really fancy, but it's better than what I use right now (the couch. No, seriously). It fits just right in the spot we are putting it in temporarily, which is great. Our house is getting quite cramped. I will be so so so glad to move to a bigger place whenever that is.
* I made the tastiest corn chowder in the crock pot this weekend. Paired with a ham and a crusty baguette from the farmers market, I was in heaven. I didn't take a picture since it just looked like a big bowl of yellow, but the recipe is here. My Memere used to make the best corn chowder so this dinner reminded me of her. I miss you Memere!

* Next weekend I am going to cook dinner both nights. One night I will be making a white trash casserole. You will have to stay tuned for why I say it's white trash. The other night I will be making spaghetti pie which is a favorite in our house.

* Can I say how excited I am for some upcoming outings? On the 21st of August our family is going to Enchanted Forest for a play day. My cousin's daughter Hazel (who is almost 2) will be there as well as Jack and everyone in my aunt's family. So fun! And my sister and I are heading to the State Fair at the end of the month. It will be Jack's first time and I am thinking he will love the animals.

To end this post, here is a video of Jack in the bouncy castle at Enchanted Playhouse this weekend. He had such a good time!