I am now a little over twelve weeks along, a.k.a. just under
three months, for those of you who don't count things by weeks like
normal people do. Every night I look in the mirror and exlaim, "Look! I
think I'm showing!" But that always turns out to be a food baby, not
the actual baby, because every morning when I wake up I look in the
mirror, and my tummy is as flat as ever. I have actually lost weight
since becoming pregnant, but I sure don't feel like that's the case. My
pants are tighter- so tight, in fact, I've given up completely on
trying to wear anything that doesn't give in the waistline. You can call me Nacho Libre; sometimes I like to wear stretchy pants. And maybe sometimes a cape.

Yesterday morning, we had our third OB/GYN appointment, and before we arrived we had no idea what to expect. The previous month, I had been poked and prodded like never before, and I dreaded the prospect that out of some sick twist of fate I would be the patient who would have to have my blood drawn at EVERY MONTHLY APPOINTMENT until I give birth to an 11-pound baby for whom we couldn't find hats big enough to fit its giant head. We have this problem with my husband, so naturally my biggest fear, next to having my blood drawn, is that our child will carry on this lovely trait in honor of the one who gets to experience the watermelon vs. the lemon phenomenon firsthand.

Imagine my elation when we were able to walk out of there with absolutely NO poking and prodding. I almost wondered if we were leaving prematurely, if we were actually supposed to keep waiting in the room after the doctor left because somebody would inevitably walk in brandishing syringes and speculums and scalpels and any other instrument that could possibly be used to torture a pregnant woman, but no one tried to stop us as we walked by the nurses' station or arrived at the checkout counter. High fives were exchanged, and off we went for our traditional post-appointment Port-of-Subs sandwich run.

We didn't escape, however, without a completely life-changing experience. The nurse who checked us in had a portable ultrasound machine and immediately set to work gelling up my belly to find the heartbeat. Two excruciating minutes later, i.e. AN ETERNITY- no joke- she finally found it, and in that moment my whole perspective on my pregnancy shifted. It's not that it wasn't real- believe me when I say that no experience has ever been more real in my life- but… I fell in love. I felt a bond with this little person for the first time. I looked at my husband and couldn't believe what we were hearing- the sound of our baby's life. I felt protective; I felt elated; I felt completely overwhelmed with love.

Whoever this person is, is just who it is. I say that all the time but it never fails to amaze me. Listening to the heartbeat of this new life that Cody and I helped create was absolutely the best thing I have yet to experience.

Things that make me dry heave.

I haven't actually thrown up yet. THANK GOD. I hate feeling nauseous all the time and a sane person would probably want to hurl in the hopes of getting some semblance of relief, but no sir, not me. Even though I haven't done this pregnancy thing before, I am smart enough to know that all the barfing in the world will not relieve the incessant nausea that makes the process of acting as host organism to a slooooooow-grooooowwwwwing being of the human variety so enjoyable. Why make myself miserable with my head in the toilet five times a day when I can be miserable in front of the TV, or with my face buried in a book instead of a trash can?

My gag reflex, however, has not escaped unscathed. As I sit here watching the Michael Jackson special (what a bizarre day), I am also trying hard not to dry heave at the stench of my dogs' wet food filling every square inch of air space in our house after their evening feeding. And GOD FORBID that we try to feed them their dry food sans wet food. They would rather starve, and usually that's what they do if given the choice. Cody is not here to do the job so I get to take on the task myself, in all my nauseous, pregnant glory. There is also something particularly gag-tastic when the feeding requires that we open a new can of food, as I had to tonight, which means that it hasn't been refrigerated, which means that it's warm-ish and the aroma is that much more intense. But they ate, and they are happy, and true to post-meal fashion, they are running around wrestling with each other as if someone gave them a 14-liter dose of pure liquid speed.

Come to think of it, the dry food is pretty foul-smelling too, and so are these chew bones we got them from Costco. Every time I open our pantry I hold my breath to avoid the smell, which, so I've been told, smells very similar to marmite, something I will NEVER EAT AS LONG AS I LIVE.

I hate anything involving poop, but I don't think that has anything to do with being pregnant. And boy, am I glad that we have had healthy dogs for the past several weeks. April was a rough month for our dogs and the owner who had to clean up after them: me.

I cannot stand coffee right now. The smell, the taste, EVERYTHING. Just the thought of drinking coffee gives me heartburn.

Carrots. I don't even want to look at a carrot. When I look at carrots, I think about the sensation of chewing them, and it makes me sick. Cooked, raw, blanched, dipped in ranch dressing, it doesn't matter. Don't give me carrots.

THOR has an ear infection. How do I know this for sure? Well, besides the fact that after his bath today I had to cut a handful of bloody hair out of his ear, the smell was otherworldly. I distinctly remember describing the odor emanating as I retrieved his "stool" (if you could even call it that) from our bathtub (that story requires a whole other post) as "otherworldly." So there ya go.

The Italian sandwich we serve where I work. Unfortunately for me, it's a very popular sandwich.

The smell of cooking chicken… good God that has to be the all-time worst. Worse than the dog food. Worse than the poop. Worse than the ear infection. Cody has made some doozies in the weeks since I've been pregnant and I finally had to cut him off, I just couldn't take it anymore. If it's baking in the oven with other things in the dish, this is not a problem. But if you're cooking it on the stove top, PLEASE SPARE ME THE TORTURE. Actually, I could handle writing about everything else I just wrote about, but just thinking about the stench I endured on those nights that Cody innocently set about making dinner for himself makes me want to make a beeline for the bathroom.

There is a flipside to this, however. We went on a little light rail adventure with our friends Alex and Ryan on Saturday evening with the mission of eating at Lolo's Chicken and Waffles. Little did we know, it was more than a mile walk through The Hood from the nearest light rail stop to Lolo's, and it was more than 100 degrees outside, and the whole way there we were like, this had better be good, and OMG, what if we get there and they're only open for breakfast! And hey! What do you think the odds are of making it to Lolo's vs. getting gunned down in a drive-by vs. suffocating from heat stroke! Because I'm personally thinking the drive-by is the most likely! Needless to say, we didn't do our research, but we made up for our ignorance with pure, unadulterated determination. Half an hour later, we walked up to one of the most ghetto-fied buildings we have ever seen: boarded windows with broken glass still sitting on the sills, bricked-in windows, chipping paint, and an upturned shopping cart for a lawn ornament. We made our entrance- two couldn't-be-whiter boys and their wives- and were immediately greeted by two things: the overwhelmingly appetizing smell of bona-fide soul food, and murmurs of the more appropriate patrons asking each other, "What are all these honkies doing in here?"

All I can say after my oh-so-satisfying meal at Lolo's is that they can call me whatever they want as long as I get to eat their food. It was a soul-altering experience. I can say with utmost certainty that I will be getting more cravings for chicken and waffles, ONLY FROM LOLO'S, AND KFC IS NOT AN ACCEPTABLE ALTERNATIVE, than any other food during the baby-building process. Hopefully Cody can put up with being called a Honky long enough for me to pop out this kid, who will no doubt look more like a fried chicken or a waffle than either one of us once I'm through with it.

Heart song 1.

We all have songs that resonate in our soul, whether it be because of a season of life we find ourselves in, a memory it evokes, or knowing that there are other people who sometimes think about things the same way you do, even if you've never met the person. These are called "heart songs," so I've been told. Lately I've had a song by my favorite band, Stampead, on repeat on my iPod called "A Clown Too Fat to Walk Across a Wire." (You can listen to it here when you click on the player for "Oh Boy.") It's melancholy, and even depressing, and it doesn't resonate with me because I'm melancholy or depressed, I promise. There are things I reflect on from my past and even now that are found in the words to this song, some subtly and some explicitly. It's about the things we do in vain, the things we do unconsciously, the things that hurt us, the things that we regret, the things we try to do but fail. I know it sounds so pathetic but I would bet that there is at least one thing on this list that anyone who hears it can relate to. I love how music can make you think, reflect, and sometimes come full circle when you simply know that somebody out there gets it. (Beware: Judd does drop the f-bomb once.)

What are your heart songs? Is there one in particular that is helping you process through a certain time of your life?


Try to drive on the highway with your eyes closed. 
Try to go to church with something exposed. 
Try to make a joke when you’re on your knees.
Try to fall in love without saying please. 

Try to make a million bucks with only your smile.
Try not to act like an only child. 
Try to call the president once a day. 
Try to think before you die the last words you'll say. 

My friend, are these the first steps to the end,
my friend, are these the first steps to the end,
of a clown too fat to walk across a wire?

Try to take all your memories, put 'em in a box. 
Try to walk thru the city wearing only your socks. 
Try not to think about what they're gonna say. 
Try to make a difference every single day. 

Try to get drunk with just three bucks. 
Try not to think about who your ex &#$@%. 
Try and realize you only have a few friends.
Try to tell a cop that it won’t happen again.

My friend, are these the first steps to the end, 
my friend, are these the first steps to the end,
of a clown too fat to walk across a wire?

Try to be hated for just one night. 
Try not to remember that your mother's always right. 

Try to get rich by the time you're 30. 
Try to be quiet when you're fighting dirty.

Try to take a joke a bit too far. 
Try to walk away without a scar. 
Try and pick a fight with someone you love. 
Act like a clown when the going gets tough.

My friend, are these the first steps to the end,
of me?

Baby Daddy.

I'm warning you, I'm gonna get mushy for this post. I just can't help myself anymore. And what better day to salute my husband than today- Father's Day!

With each day that goes by, I can hardly believe my good fortune to be married to such an amazing, self-sacrificial, loving, humble, wonderful man. I am so blessed by his commitment to me and our family, for being willing to take care of me when I can barely get my butt off the couch (or just because he's being nice and letting me relax), for getting up early and going to work every day to provide for us, for taking care of things around the house that I normally would do myself, for cooking amazing food, and for proving again and again what an amazing dad he already is. 

God knows I am not an easy person to get along with sometimes. But Cody's patience is unmatched, I swear- patience of a saint, as my mom would say. When it's easy to throw your hands up in the air and say, "I give up!" Cody always takes on the challenge of making things right. He works hard to make our relationship work, as all worthwhile marriages require, and it makes it easy to take on the task myself. He reminds me every day that I am number two in his life… right behind God. I love being number two. It's right where I belong.

Sometimes I just can't find the right words to tell my husband how much I love and appreciate and need him every day; when these times happen, I just have to be near him and hope that he knows that this is true. I can't believe I get to share my life and now the adventure of parenthood with my best friend in the whole world… a person I love so much that sometimes I think my heart will simply explode. 

Happy Father's Day, Cody. Thank you for being you, i.e. AMAZING. Our child is going to love you more than me… just like our dogs 😛


Can I use them for beer, then?

I was pretty stoked when I came across the blog of the author of the book "Sippy Cups are Not for Chardonnay" while linking between other mom blogs. What was funny is that, while I was reading her blog, I thought to myself, "I need to do some research and find out if the author of that one book I want has a blog, because I'd love to read it." Like, I almost left her site to go… find her site. DRRRT. Then I look over at the about me and right below the part where it says she's an author and has a new book coming out, there's a link to "Sippy Cups are Not for Chardonnay" right below it, and her name was on the book.

Well that was easy.

On a different note, if anyone needs any ideas for a birthday present for me, feel free to choose from the following list:

A copy of "Sippy Cups are Not for Chardonnay" or any other funny, honest, easy-to-read new-mom memoir because I need to know I'm not the only one out there who DOESN'T KNOW WHAT THE HECK I'M DOING
A trip to get a pedicure
A haircut by Kim Cornwell at Robert Paul Salon
A gift card for a magic tan at Dolce so I at least look tan for the weddings I'm in next month
Anything from Anthropologie
Maternity clothes- because apparently I'm gonna need some in a few months or something
A night at Little America in Flagstaff
A gift card from JoAnn Fabrics, i.e. the happiest place on earth
A six pack of Paulaner Hefeweisen, drank on my behalf… no lemon necessary
A million dollars

That's right, I have no shame. Gifts are my love language… that's my excuse, anyway. After all, you only have one final-birthday-of-your-twenties. My advice to my nephew, who just entered his twenties: Don't be an idiot who does dumb things. Not that you would. The end.

The “New Normal.”

I'm seeing a lot of this "New Normal" business on the news shows on network TV lately. People living in tents, in motels, kids without shoes, etc. etc. "With the economy the way it is…" I'm really beginning to get tired of that statement. Yes, the economy sucks, and I am not one to deny its effects on many in our country, I promise. I've said it myself a time or two. But sometimes I think it's nothing more than a GIANT COP-OUT for anything that happens to a person these days. There comes a point when you have to take personal responsibility for the things that are or aren't happening to you. 

I've been a complainy, whiny mess lately. My hormones are off the charts and I don't handle feeling sick like a champ unlike some people. I try, but quite honestly, I fail. I am thankful for friends and family who let me vent, and understand, and have compassion, and am annoyed with the ones who do not. I am annoyed that my paychecks have been cut by more than half; in fact, I'm just annoyed with how that whole situation was handled, period. I am annoyed by things that are affecting us that are out of our hands.

I cannot, however, be annoyed by the things that I can control. And we can always control where the money that we do have goes. 

We live in a nation of absolute excess. My husband's income alone places us in the top 3.5% of earners in the world using that number. It feels so… ridiculous. That is an eye-opener, for sure. We both seek to be giving people, and giving should be a sacrificial and joyful thing. Nobody wants to receive something out of reluctance or obligation. It's scary to give when you aren't sure your own needs will be met. But it is what anyone with the title "Christian" is called to do, and God is faithful to provide when you show you trust Him to do so. 

My friend Amy posted a fantastic blog on this subject. I read it right after I woke up and it was such a timely read in the midst of all the stress and uncertainty we are living in now. Not because I believe in distribution of wealth (I'm not sure she necessarily does either, as she clarifies later in the comments); I believe that people who earn whatever they earn deserve to keep it and do with their income what they see fit. I also think giving and charity should be a huge part of what people do with their earnings, but it should not be forced on them. (OK, I'll spare you. I'm off my soapbox.) I enjoyed her post because it pointed out that we have to be responsible to the choices we made to get us to where we are now, and what can we ACTUALLY complain about? I can't complain about not being to pay for things if I'm out buying a new shirt at Anthropologie because I "deserve it" or even something as small as a $2.00 bag of Starbursts because I was craving them, as I did tonight, because every penny adds up these days. Never before has the reality of being really, and I mean REALLY, frugal hit me so squarely in the face. I realized that up until now, we were trying to be frugal, but we still allowed ourselves luxuries from time to time. Unless money starts magically appearing in our bank account, we simply cannot afford those luxuries anymore. 

And in a strange way, while still fearing it, I'm actually looking forward to it. 

There are things I've been missing out on in life. Laziness and fear have gotten the best of me. I don't feel like doing much RIGHT now, but once I start feeling better I don't want to miss out on life anymore. It's strange because I feel that in some way, by being forced to forego the little things we usually enjoy, like eating out, seeing a movie every now and then, or buying the latest book that gets our attention, we will find other, more meaningful ways to enjoy life. I can see how God would be teaching us and stretching us more than we ever thought possible during this time. I know that there will be times that I HATE going without; honestly, I always have. I would be lying if I said I didn't get pangs of envy when I serve some of these girls my age who come in with their friends and their giant diamond rings and cute outfits and fancy purses and Lexus key rings and order their salads and lattes without a care in the world. I've always had expensive taste- just ask my dad, or my husband 🙂 But going WITH those things makes a person lose perspective on the things that are really important. 

And I want more out of my life. And more for our new little life. I'll just be trusting God's provision along the way, more than ever before. 

Preliminary name list

Some names we like (we've only just begun):

Boys: Luke or Lucas

Girls: Ella or Elle
Evelynne (I like, Cody doesn't)
Callie (then I paired it with Alley… NEVER MIND.)

If you hate your child, name it: 
Homobono. I actually came across this today. Means "good man." As if the meaning matters when your name is "Homobono." ONLY PARENTS WHO HATE THEIR CHILD GIVE IT THIS NAME. If you named your child this and you are offended, no one cares because now your child has to live with being called HOMOBONO for the rest of his life, or just "Homo" or "Boner" or "Homoboner." Good job with that one.

The Grandmas.

I have never met two women more EXCITED about becoming grandmas than my mom and Cody's mom. They're both first-timers, and they're both beside themselves knowing that they will have a little one to cuddle and spoil in true grandma fashion. It's the best thing ever. 

I have come to the conclusion that my mom was put on this planet for one purpose, and one purpose only: to be a grandma. Or rather, an amma, as we Icelanders call our dear grandmothers, as I always have with my mom's mom. (My dad's mom was always Mum-Mum to everyone… we aim for different in our family, apparently.) She can literally hardly contain herself as she anticipates the arrival of this little one. Every time I see her she puts her hands on my still-flat tummy, her face just beaming because SHE KNOWS WHAT'S IN THERE! It's SO CUTE. The same can certainly be said for Cody's mom. He said it best: upon finding out that we are expecting, she was "activated," Terminator-style: full grandma mode, ON. It's fantastic.

"Amma" and "Grandma" are going to be amazing blessings to us. They already are. My mom calls me every other day to check in on me and my "little blueberry," as she calls our growing child, along with occasional e-mails to let me know she's thinking of us. Cody's mom calls and e-mails both of us to see how I'm feeling, to see how she can help us out, or just to let us know how everyone is doing and that she loves us. It's wonderful knowing that we have such a core of support in them- that's where it starts, really. No one will be more hands on with our child than our own precious mothers. 

Nothing makes you appreciate your mom more than becoming a mom yourself. Someday I'll understand the magic of watching your children start families of their own. But for now, Cody and I have a front-row seat, and two grandmas who love this "little blueberry" more than words can say.

Rough day.

Actually, it's been a rough couple of days. No energy, extreme nausea, wobbly legs. I remember when I ran track and cross country in high school and then college and having workouts and races that left my legs so shaky it was hard to so much as hold myself up. I have never remembered that feeling with such clarity as I do now- I feel like that ALL THE TIME. But instead of feeling that way because I just ran 10 laps around the track at a successively fast pace, I feel that way because I'm… laying around on the couch, doing nothing. It's the most ridiculous thing I've ever tried to explain. "Yes, I sit around on my butt ALL DAY LONG. And MAN does it wear me out!"


For the past couple of weeks, I seem to have settled into a pattern of feeling generally well during the day and pretty gnarly at night. This is OK because I work during the day and there is nothing worse than being around food that you normally love but now that you're prego makes you want to blow chunks, and dealing with the already-overwhelming smell of the 5-pound block of bleu cheese that the sweet salad lady, just doing her job, is cutting into manageable crumbles, all while trying not to either dry heave or pass out on customers as you take their order at the register- with a smile. 

Yesterday and today were definitely out of the "norm" that I have been experiencing lately. My Sunday started off well enough- woke up, went to church, went to a class, and that's when the fun started. Nauseous, uncomfortable, hungry for a croissant sandwich. We went to Paradise Bakery and I ordered the roast beef and havarti on a croissant, which I was completely unaware contained horseradish, which is definitely one of those things I have a VERY hard time eating these days. Ate it anyway and proceeded to relive the taste sensation for the remainder of the day and night with the release of even the tiniest burp. This was quickly followed up by such intense fatigue that I crashed on the couch and fell asleep- immediately. My poor husband. I had signed us up to babysit Cruz again that day, and guess who did ALL the work? He is such a trooper. And will be such an amazing dad. I have never been more in love with him than I am now.

Anyway, today sucked too.

It's amazing how bringing a life into the world is one of the hardest and one of the best things that a person can ever do in life. With every day that goes by that I feel AWFUL, I breathe a sigh of relief because it means that my baby is taking what it needs from me to grow and be healthy and strong. It's hard, and sure, I wish I felt great all the time like some women do, but if I felt great all the time I would probably wonder if my baby is really in there, growing up a storm. I feel better the worse I feel because of what it means.

It's funny how pregnancy changes your outlook on life. Cody and I both said the other day that no matter how surprised, unprepared, freaked out, uncertain, panicked, or desperate we have felt through this process of facing this new responsibility, it never even crossed our minds to want the baby to stop growing and not make it. It's not that we ever would have wanted that- don't get me wrong. We're still scared, and excited. It's just that our perspective has shifted to want the best for this new person that has been placed in our lives no matter the effect it has on us.

It's made us grow up.


Work at Home Mom. I hope to achieve this title in the near future. I just can't seem to figure out a legitimate way to do so. 

Lately I have been overwhelmed by all I have laying ahead of me, and all I have to get done, everything I have to learn, not knowing what I don't know but need to know, and wondering how we are going to stretch our dollars without my income anymore. Because insurance companies are evil and view pregnancy as a "pre-existing condition," Cody is stuck at his job at least until our little one arrives. And because ASU is run by a communist- I mean, Michael Crow, they have things like forced mandatory retirement funds that don't let you choose how much or how often you put in money, and they require employees to pay for parking (and Lot 59, which was a mere $50 when we were in school, is now $270 per year for EVERYONE and is the cheapest parking on campus!), plus unpaid furlough days to cut everyone's salary by 10%, on top of taxes, and you have a paycheck that is whittled down to less than 70% of what you would normally take home from that same salary anywhere else. Cody is very good at his job and has gained great experience since he started there three years ago, but he doesn't necessarily want to stay there long-term, and without his Master's degree, there really isn't a way to move up, at least not in the next six months or so. And even if he did, his income couldn't be impacted all that much with all the FEES that are FORCED on ASU employees. Grrr… 

I have a love-hate relationship with the whole scenario. In spite of everything I don't like about it, I am SO thankful that Cody was able to keep his job through all the budget cuts that happened there last winter, and I am so thankful to have great health insurance. Things could be a lot worse so I know I need to keep that in perspective. I am frustrated with employment in general on many levels these days and all I can say is that I know both he and I are worth WAY more than either of us take home every two weeks. 

Cody is a scholar at heart and wants nothing more than to go to seminary for his Master's degree, and even talked about getting his Ph.D so he can teach at the college level someday. He would be SO good at this, but an education like that costs a pretty penny- a pretty penny we thought maybe we could swing BEFORE we found out that we had a baby on the way, and now we're like, "THE MORTGAGE! THE A/C! DIAPERS! THANK GOD WE DON'T HAVE A CAR PAYMENT! HOLD ON A SECOND! DO WE NEED A NEW CAR!" 

I'm happy to report that the panic phase has passed, but we still don't have any answers. That's the thing about trusting God- you don't know what He's up to, but you have to trust the fact that He is always up to something, and it is always for our good. It's our humanity that makes us freak out, and I still do from time to time. My hours at work have been cut in half (which was NOT part of the deal) and my pay was cut too, so I've been trying to figure out what exactly I'm supposed to go out and do. Go get a new job, tell them I'm prego and not even stand a chance at the job (no matter how illegal that is), or don't tell them and let them figure it out when they see The Bump, and then say something like, "Oh, that? I didn't mention it before? My apologies. I won't be here much past January." I mean, really. Who does that.

So I'm researching like crazy trying to find something I can do from home that brings in a steady income but gives me the flexibility to care for our baby. I've found like, two legit sites, but one of them is already ruled out because it requires a PC, and we are a Mac family. I've gone through all the steps that are required of applicants to be considered for an opening on the other site, but the follow-up I received totally goes against everything I already did. I of course am beginning to question its legitimacy. 

For right now, I just want a paycheck. I have dreams of doing other things but those things will have to wait for a time. For instance, I LOVE to sew. I am a total novice at it, but it was a childhood hobby of mine that I'm starting to pick up again, and I'd love to make something of it. My Icelandic grandma was a professional seamstress and used to make all sorts of goodies for us when I was growing up. I would love to do what she did and learn her tricks (she had SO many cool tricks) and sell my items on Etsy… I know, I know, this is SO TRENDY, it almost makes me not want to do it. It seems as if talented, well-practiced, formally trained artists of the handmade variety are a dime a dozen anymore- it's overwhelming- and why would anybody want the work of a mere hobbyist like me? I have so much inspiration and a lot of ideas but when it comes to executing them, it's almost like I get paralyzed. By what, I don't know, but I am surrounded by people who are just going for whatever it is that they have always wanted to do and I want to do it too. I am so inspired by them. It'll take time to achieve these things, but I'm sure it'll be worth waiting for. 

But on that note: if anyone has any ideas for income in the meantime, please, enlighten me.