Friday, August 30, 2013

It's Preschool, Not College

Today was my baby girl's first day of preschool.
Actually, I should say first day of preschool for the second time. 
She's been in daycare and preschool since she was 6 weeks old, but I feel like "real preschool" starts the year before Kindergarten.
After getting out of the Marine Corps last October, she's been home with me living the "good life". 
It didn't make it any easier for me to drop her off though!
Especially having a newborn in the house now, she just seemed so grown up.
 Hubby walked her in since it was her first day.
I think I told her "I love you" a million times in the car before she got out.
I reminded her that "she can do all things through Christ..."
I told her to be nice to everyone (even the boys), and to make lots of new friends.
He said that she just ran in and didn't look back once.
The part that made me super sad was when my hubby mentioned that he felt like she didn't need us anymore.
She started preschool today, mind you. 
It's not like she was going off to college.
I don't even want to think about that day. 

We all had lunch today at Casey's Diner.
It's a really cool little rail car converted into a diner here in Natick with the best hot dogs around!
Our family usually go there on Sundays, and we figured little Mattis needed his first Casey's experience.

Dannika is also starting gymnastics next week, so we went out and bought her a new leotard today.
Between paying tuition for everything and buying leotards and supplies, I'm absolutely certain that we are done having children!
People weren't kidding me when they told me children were expensive!

Our week has been busy busy!
Honestly though, having a newborn and a preschooler is a lot easier than having just a newborn!
D is such a great help, and she's old enough to contribute to household duties and chores.
I'm also recovering from labor and delivery a lot faster than I did with D.
My body was a hot mess after I had D, but I feel almost back to my old self.
I can't wait to get the clear to start running and working out again!
I want my abs back!!

The first Aggie football game of the season is TOMORROW!

Thursday, August 29, 2013

A Baby Story

 Don't ask me why I'm up so early, but I figured while all three of my babies (hubby, D, and M) were sleeping, I'd do some blogging.

Because I gave birth via scheduled induction, I don't have quite as interesting of a birth story as my first one.
If I would have had the time to get an epidural with my first one, I'm pretty sure we would have had our second child a lot sooner than we did.
**I was so traumatized with my first labor and delivery, and having to give birth with no pain medication or pain management. I never wanted to go through that experience again, and I contemplated adoption very seriously for a while**
My labor and deliveries were NIGHT AND DAY compared to each other!
With Mattis, it was a lot more of a pleasant, joyful, and (good) memorable experience (thank you, epidural).

See how happy I look with an epidural, and being in labor in a nice, safe, and CONTROLLED environment?!
I'm pretty sure with D, I looked more like this...

I checked into the hospital at 0730.
I was started on pitocin at 0830.
I got my epidural at around 0900-0930, and at that point, I felt like I was in heaven.
They gave me my epidural before I started feeling any pain, and all I was feeling were small cramps. By 1615 (415 in the afternoon), the doctor came in to check me, and she couldn't believe she could already see and feel the baby's head.
I started pushing at 1630, and baby Mattis made his appearance into the world at 1637!
I only pushed for two contractions (same as with D).
Just like the doctor who delivered D, the doctor who delivered M was in shock how fast I delivered. 
It all worked out cause she was going off shift at 1700 (5pm)!

When I was pregnant with D, I watched entirely too many shows on TLC about childbirth, and I expected it to be this beautiful moment (like on TV) where everyone is crying tears of joy and happiness.
I was really disappointed that my reality was the total opposite. 
There were no tears of joy and happiness, just tears of utter pain.
I'm pretty sure a few profanities were shouted.
I assaulted my poor husband...
The birth of our son, however, was exactly like those TV shows.
It was perfect and beautiful in every way.
I cried my tears of joy as they put him on my chest, and I looked up at my husband who had a look of pure happiness and calm on his face.
It's amazing what a little pain management did for my mood!

I knew D would be a great big sister.
It's something that I diligently prayed about, but I didn't expect my 4 year old to be as nurturing as she was!
She wanted to hold him, and I think if we would have let her, she would have held him all night long!

This past weekend, we took D to the "Build-A-Bear Workshop" to build a stuffed animal for her new baby brother.
We also had one made for her "from her baby brother".
She was so excited to give it to him!

Proud daddy and his babies.

I've had many mothers of daughters tell me that they didn't think they could love a son the same way they loved their daughters until they actually held their son in their arms.
I'm kind of ashamed to admit I felt that way at times!
I always pictured myself a mother of nothing but daughters.
But wow!!!!
I couldn't imagine him being anything else other than him!

I have to give my amazing husband some major kudos.
He has gotten up with me every single time the baby needs to be fed, and has kept me company while I nurse him (even though he doesn't have to).
Our son is now 4 days old, and I have yet to change a diaper!
It's true ladies...
Men like him do exist, and I am incredibly blessed that he's mine!
Did I mention that he is a full time active duty Marine, an off duty college student, an amazing God loving husband, a best friend, a father to a spunky 4 year old, and now a newborn.
This man hardly ever sleeps!

 I love them :-)

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Welcome to the World, Dear Son

Mattis Mark Vincent Romer
7lbs 11ozs
20 3/4 inches
August 26, 2013 @ 1637
Newton-Wellesley Hospital
Newton, MA

Thanks for all the well wishes, prayers, and support!

Sunday, August 25, 2013

Maternity Slideshow

Walked outside after a nice long nap, and I caught these two barefoot, laying in the grass, beer in daddy's hand, and just talking about life.
This is one of those moments that I want to cherish forever...
I don't even know if she truly realizes what is about to happen tomorrow.
She knows we are having a baby tomorrow, but I'm not sure if she knows that her life will be forever changed.
Every single mother with more than one child has told me that once the new baby comes, my feelings of guilt for my first child would go away...
The thought of, "do I even have enough love for two kids?" becomes a distant and faded memory.
But I still can't help but feel a little sad.
D has been my one and only, my first love, and my best friend for the last 4 years.
Her and I have such a special bond.
We have been through deployments, separations, and military life together...and oftentimes just the two of us. 

In my midst of crazy pregnant and hormonal emotions, it makes me feel better just piling my emotions on God, and letting Him deal with it.

I'm so glad that I serve a God that lets me do that.

Saturday, August 24, 2013

Last Saturday as 3

My mama's here from Texas.
My hospital bags are packed and in the car.
My induction is scheduled for Monday at 0700.

"Baby can make your appearance any time now, and I will be ok."

These last few weeks have d-r-a-g-g-e-d by, but now that I'm realizing it's our last Saturday as a family of 3, it feels like time flew!

My husband makes us pancakes from scratch, bacon, and scrambled eggs for breakfast every Saturday when he is home.
It's our Saturday morning tradition.
He will not let me in the kitchen on Saturday mornings to help him with anything!
I've learned to kick back, and let him do his thing.
And he seriously does make the best pancakes and scrambled eggs ever.
It's the only time I'll eat full fat, real bacon, butter, and anything else besides egg whites :-)
I even pour a healthy serving of real maple syrup on my pancakes.
Live a little, right?

So today, I'm going to enjoy my last Saturday morning breakfast with my family of 3.
I'll probably do a little walking and enjoy the cool New England "end of summer" air.

I'm so privileged that God chose me to carry His child inside of me for the last 9 months.
It's been amazing to watch and feel my body change with every week of this pregnancy.
I'm excited for my daughter to meet her new baby brother, and I know both my husband and I are excited about adding a new (and final) addition to our perfect family of 3.

Happy Saturday, everyone!

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Dear Lord...

 Here's my 39 week baby bump pic, and also my last one before baby comes next Monday (or sooner).

I'm thoroughly positive that Baby M will not be here until my induction date on Monday.
If I weren't being induced, I'm sure he would probably wait even longer PAST my due date. 
It's a funny thing, but at church last Sunday, part of the sermon was about surrendering your will to God.
Do you know how hard it is for a 9 month pregnant woman to surrender her will to God?!?!
It's tough!
Lately my prayers have been this...

Dear Lord,
I know this is not the right way to pray, but...
I need you to put me out of my misery, and make this baby come out...
like right NOW...or sometime today or tonight!
But only if it's Your will of course...
And if it's not your will, can you make it your will to make this happen soon? 
In Your name I pray, Amen.

God has a sense of humor, right?
I'm sure he's laughing at my prayer while quietly telling my heart to be patient.

But seriously...
Mama is uncomfortable and miserable.
Let's speed this up, God...
I wonder if he reads my blog?

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Bike Rides and Maids

My favorite part of the day these days are our family's evening walks after dinner.
It's a new thing we started a few weeks ago.
We got my daughter a bike a year ago, and I can honestly count on my fingers how many times she has gotten on it.
I decided that she needed to get some good use out of it before she outgrew it, and thus our new "tradition" began.
My daughter has an extremely cautious personality.
She's very dainty and careful with everything she does.
On our first walk (through our extremely hilly neighborhood), it took us a good 35 minutes to walk a mile.
She was deathly afraid of riding her bike downhill.
She was unsure of her brakes.
She constantly wanted to stop.
She even wanted to give up a few times.
As the days have progressed, she has gained a ton of confidence.
The other day when we were done with our walk, she boldly announced that she was ready to take her training wheels off.
"WHAT?!? Is this our daughter?!"
My excited husband took her training wheels off, and started practicing with her on our front lawn.

She was obviously nervous at first (if you can't tell by her facial expression).

As she gained a little confidence (after a few falls), she was peddling on her own!

We're not quite ready to take her training wheels off permanently, but she sure is enjoying the practice time on our front lawn!

On a final note...
Remember how I said that I have ZERO "nesting instinct" with this pregnancy?
Well, I still have no desire to "nest" desire....absolutely none.
So my absolutely wonderful hubby hired a maid to come deep clean our house today.
I'm giddy with joy!
When I was active duty, I had a maid to come to our house weekly and clean.
It made sense at the time since I worked, my husband worked...
My husband was gone most of the time...
The last thing I wanted to do on my off time was clean my house and catch up on household chores.
I provided a substantial part of our income, so it was doable.
When I got out however, it was one luxury that I gave up (since I was going to be a stay at home mom and no longer financially contributing).
It's the one of the things I miss the most about working.
One of the things I miss most about being a Marine is the fact that I had a maid.
I just laughed out loud reading that. 

So today...
I'm gonna enjoy paying someone to do all my dirty work while I kick back and wait on this baby to come.

Sunday, August 18, 2013

Ben & Jerry's + Jajangmyeon = 30

Like I said yesterday, we spent my hubby's 30th birthday just as a family.
It was a perfect day for him (and for my 9 month prego self).
And as he wished, the baby did not come on his birthday.
He was really worried about having to share a birthday with his
  I asked him at the beginning of the week what kind of cake he wanted me to make, and he wanted an ice cream cake.
I didn't have to bake, and I had been dying to go to our local Ben & Jerry's Scoop Shop.
My husband LOVES caramel (the word "love" is actually an understatement), so of course he wanted the triple caramel chunk ice cream cake.
And I must say, it was heavenly.
It has layers of fudge inside with triple caramel chunk ice cream in between the fudge.
It then is "iced" with vanilla ice cream and whipped cream.
Then it is drizzled with more fudge, and topped with chocolate covered caramel turtles.
And for my Texas people...
NO, it does NOT compare to Blue Bell, but pretty darn close!

We had a late birthday lunch in Allston (pretty much Boston) at a Korean restaraunt called Buk Kyung II.
Most people are pretty familiar with Korean BBQ, but if you've never had Korean jajangmyeon or Korean tangsuyuk, you are seriously missing out on some other delicious Korean cuisine!

Here they are, right before heading out for lunch!

Jangjangmyeon is Korean noodles in a black soybean paste sauce.
It seriously is SOOOOOOO good.
Tangsuyuk is basically a Korean version of sweet and sour pork (pictured below).
 I described it to my husband as the Korean version of "General Tso's chicken", but I felt bad comparing this deliciousness of a dish to a bad westernized Chinese dish.

If you're ever in the Boston area, I highly recommend this place to get your Korean grub on!
Parking is terrible (like the rest of Boston), but once you find parking, this place is totally worth it!

My hubby decided he was feeling lucky since it was 30th birthday, so he bought a few scratchers.
He didn't win anything. (sad face)
*Note his "grown up" sunglasses.*

After his birthday adventures, we spent the rest of the evening outside.
We took our daughter on her daily evening bike ride with me power walking/running ferociously next to her to try and speed up this labor process (and it's not working).
After seeing a picture on Instagram of my best friend's son riding his bike without training wheels, my daughter decided it was time to take hers off.
That lasted a whole 10 minutes and 3 wipe outs on our front lawn. 
She wanted her training wheels back on after the last
I give her an "A" for effort, and for at least wanting to try!

Just a random thought...
One of my favorite blogs to read (out of the many) is Marshall's Abroad.
Every time I read her blog, I tell myself I need to get my DSLR out more to snap photos.
I mean seriously though...
EVERY SINGLE photo on her blog is absolutely stunning and breathtaking.
She never posts cruddy cell phone pics!
I feel like I have this big fancy camera, and I barely use it anymore.
My iPhone5 has pretty much taken over my photographing life.

I actually may take my DSLR out of storage tonight while I'm thinking about it. 

Saturday, August 17, 2013

Another Baby Update

But this time...
It's not about the baby growing in my belly!
It's my "babe", my lover boy, my heart, my everything, my knight in shining armor...etc.etc.etc.etc.
My husband, Nick!

Today is a huge milestone for him.
He is officially 30!

Being 9 months prego, it was tough for us to really plan something huge and extravagant for his "dirty thirty."
He really wanted to have a BBQ at our house for his birthday, but the idea of having people over with me being this pregnant made me sick.
Even though he insisted, I didn't have to do anything, I knew I would eventually be running around cleaning after people, prepping food, and just being a good hostess.
That was something this prego was not in the mood to do!
Instead, I tried my best to make his "birthday week" extra special.

I got him a little something each day this week counting the days down to his birthday.

On Monday, I bought him some "grown up socks".
I told him he's at the age now where he really does need some nice dress socks to wear with his nice dress shoes and slacks.
His Marine Corps issued uniform socks and cotton socks just aren't going to cut it anymore.

On Tuesday, I sent him on an "errand" when he went to work to pick up some cupcakes from Sweet Cupcakes.
I told him that I ordered them to take to church on Wednesday for my small group brunch.
Of course that was a lie.
I had a note attached telling him that they were actually for him and his 29 years and 361 days of life!

On Wednesday, he came home to a new pair of aviator sunglasses and some nose hair
My husband is always wearing some sort of ballistic, sporty Oakley's, and I thought he needed some more "professional" looking sunglasses to wear with his nice clothes and dress uniforms.
The nose hair trimmers were more of a gag gift.
All old men have long nose hairs, right?

On Thursday, we surprised him with two nice ties and some nice cufflinks. 
My husband's idea of "dressing up" is normally wearing a dress uniform.
Every grown man needs to own some nice ties and cuff links.
So I thought I would help him start "accessorizing" his "big boy" clothes.

On Friday, I planned a big lunch for him and his friends from work in Boston at Uno's Chicago Grill for some deep dish pizza!
I drove into Boston (on a Friday, mind you) to celebrate his last day as a 29 year old with his friends.

And today, for the big day....
We're planning on just spending it as a family.
I ordered him a custom ice cream cake with all his favorite flavors from the Ben Jerry's Scoop Shop
 For dinner, we are heading into Boston to have jajangmyeon (Korean noodle dish) at a restaurant our pediatrician (who's Korean) recommended called Buk Kyung.

And for my babe..

I just want you to know how extremely proud I am of all that you've accomplished in 30 short years of life. I seriously wake up every day thinking, "What more could this man POSSIBLY accomplish today?!", and every day, you amaze me with something new. There are men who leave this earth at 100 years old that would be jealous of what you have done in your 30 years. Not only is your success professionally as a Marine something that I proudly boast about, but your growth in Christ over the years is something I am even more proud of. I think because of that, He has blessed you in so many ways! It's God's way of showing you that He is proud of you as well. 
You've given our family so much to be thankful for, and I do my best to not take any of it for granted. I know how hard you work to provide for us, and to provide an even better future for our children. 

Thank you...
1. For always putting us first.
2. For making us pancakes from scratch every Saturday morning when you are home.
3. For playing outside and having adventures with Dannika.
4. For always doing the dishes after dinner (without me ever asking).
5. For working hard enough to afford me the opportunity to stay home with our children.
6. For taking us to the movies to watch movies that we want to watch.
7. For liking my cooking.
8. For wine, vodka, and beer nights at the house.
9. For making it to every single one of my doctor's appointments when you aren't gone.
10. For making it to Dannika's doctor's appointments as well.
11. For watching the Bachelor with me...and every other reality show that I can't help watching.
12. For going to church with us.
13. For always bringing me a glass of water at night before bed.
14. For fixing everything that needs fixing! You're such a handyman!
15. For working hard to make our first home beautiful.
16. For finding the home that we are living in now.
17. For making sure we are taken care of when the Marine Corps takes you away from us.
18. For looking so dang sexy in your uniforms...especially your chucks and your dress mm!
19. For putting up with my ridiculous shopping sprees (every once in a while!)
20. For setting up the baby's nursery.
21. For painting every inch of this house and making it more "homey" before D and I moved here
22. For shoveling snow all winter by yourself.
23. For going to college while sometimes working 60+ hours a week to secure a better future for us.
24. For always saying "yes" to me when I ask you to do something...even when I know you don't want to.
25. For the evening walks around our neighborhood while teaching D to get over her fear of hills on her bike
26. For being in charge of bedtime routine with Dannika every night when you're home so that I can lay in bed earlier.
27. For reading bedtime stories.
28. For standing up for me.
29. For being such an honest an humble man.
30. For loving God.
Happy 30th Birthday, handsome!
I can't wait to spend the next 30 birthdays with you!
Us :-)
We sure have come a long way since the first birthday we celebrated as a married couple!

And the second....
Remember the backwards "26"? lol.

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

38 Week Baby Update

I'm officially into week 38 of this pregnancy!
I'll admit, I'm a lot smaller than I was with my first pregnancy...

In this photo (below), I believe I was barely at 30 weeks (with D), and look how much chunkier my face and arms look!
I gained 60lbs with my first (thanks to my intense In-N-Out cravings), and only lost 15 upon giving birth. 
That means I had 45lbs to lose on my own...

So this pregnancy is a welcomed change.
I've been eating well, working out throughout the entire pregnancy, and I've been mindful about my cravings (the only thing I didn't do different last pregnancy!).

It doesn't mean I feel less miserable than I did at 38 weeks with my daughter!

I may not be as big, but I feel just as big....
And just as miserable...

I'm 2cm dilated as of yesterday afternoon.
The baby's head is nice and low.
My doctor scheduled my induction to be on August 26th, but he predicted that I may not make it till then (fingers crossed).

And inconveniently, my doctor is going on his annual vacation next week to Mexico.
And...the week I am due, he is working at a different hospital than the one I am delivering at.

So I'm being delivered by another doctor from his practice.
He sounds pretty confident that I won't have any complications, so I feel ok about being delivered by someone else.

Honestly at this point...

Any trained medical professional could deliver me, and I'd still be happy.
I just want baby out already!

Sunday, August 11, 2013

Waiting on Baby

My doctor already told me that it didn't look like baby M would be here before his due date.
I'm "right where I need to be" as far as dilation and effacement for this stage of my pregnancy.
We've already discussed being induced just a few days prior to my due date.

To make a long story short.
I had what is called a "precipitous" labor and delivery with my daughter.
Because of that, I am at high risk to have a repeat of that episode.
So in order to give birth in a more controlled and safe environment, my doc and I feel more comfortable controlling my delivery before my body actually goes into "delivery mode" on its' own. 
I actually have a little anxiety about going into labor before my induction date for fear of another delivery like my daughter's.

Even though doc predicts that baby won't be here early, a girl can still hope and pray, right?!
I'm considered full-term, so TECHNICALLY, he can come any day now...

And frankly...
Mama is tired of being prego.

I also hate dislike it when people tell me, "Oh honey, you don't want him here anytime soon! Enjoy your sleep now, cause you won't be getting any when he's here!"


I'd much rather be getting the 2-3 hours of continuous sleep when when baby's here than the 8-9 hours of tossing and turning I am doing now.

 While waiting on baby, I've been trying to make the most of my weekends with the family.
I think I may have overdid it this weekend because I'm ridiculously tired today.

We spent the entire day yesterday at the Belkin Family Lookout Farm here in Natick. 
 They have apples and peaches ready for picking already, but we spent so much time at the children's play area that we ended up not picking any fruit.
Nick and D had a blast though, and this pregnant mama exhausted herself.

D had her face painted...

The rock climbing wall freaked her out a little...
 Or maybe it was daddy threatening to let go of

I don't know what came over me, but after we spent an entire afternoon in the sun at the farm, I decided that we needed to go on a mile long walk with D on her bike.

As a child, I was afraid of EVERYTHING.
My poor daughter inherited my "scaredy cat" gene.
When it comes to riding her bike, she is deathly afraid of riding downhill.
It doesn't help that we live in an extremely "hilly" neighborhood.
So I was an extremely proud mama when she rode down this little hill all by herself...

And as if the bike ride/walk wasn't enough to tire me out, I decided that we all needed to pull out the motorcycle and D's Powerwheel out for a little impromptu car wash.

New England isn't the greatest state to own a crotch rocket. 
The weather is only good for riding for maybe 6 months out of the entire year.
It also doesn't help that hubby was gone for 3 out of those 6 months, and I've been pregnant the entire time.
So the poor R1 has been sitting in the garage ALL winter long and ALL summer long. 
Actually...due to deployments and training, the poor bike barely gets any good use. 
She's a 2008, and we've only put 5,000 miles on her in the 5 years that we've owned her. 
But at least in Cali, we could ride it year around!

By the time bed time rolled around, I was OUT.
And here I am today...