weekly 'what's up'

we had a baby yesterday.  and some other stuff happened this week.  mostly, though, the distinguishing news this week was that we had a baby yesterday.

long story short, i woke up at 4:30 in the morning with contractions, and labored through the morning at home.  there was a moment in which i found myself crying and eating fast food in the bathtub.  that was not the most shining moment of the day.  but really, labor went pretty smoothly.  we got to the hospital about 2:30, where they told me i was dilated to 7-8, so it was just a matter of waiting it out.  i got an epidural (i hadn't known if i would opt for it or not), and had her at 6:07 p.m.  really smooth!

enough small talk.  let's get down to business:


now to just decide with certainty on a name... (oh, didn't i tell you we've started waffling again?  we're no good at this process.)

here's where i'm at with all this.

so, i was due twelve days ago.  and unless something has drastically changed in the interim between my writing of this post and your reading of it, i still have no new baby in arms.  (that sounds like the baby is wielding some kind of weaponry.  i'm cool with that.)

i've had a lot of questions from everyone about how i'm feeling, which is really sweet.  but the truth is, i'm actually doing really well.  now that a lot of that false labor has stopped (the baby has moved to the correct position and is no longer prank calling my uterus) i'm actually feeling pretty good.  

every day there is something that i'm really glad that i got to go to/participate in that i wouldn't have been able to if in the hospital or at home with a newborn.  i got the kitchen ceiling painted yesterday.  there have been leaders' meetings and prayer/worship nights and connection group gatherings with candeo that i feel really, really blessed to have gotten to attend.  and also, i'm really enjoying sleeping through the night still and not having to nurse yet.  (am i the only one on the planet that doesn't love nursing?)

i had an appointment with my chiropractor again on monday, and an appointment with my midwife on tuesday.  like i said, the baby is in the correct position now, and they did a nonstress test to make sure she's still happy and healthy hanging out in there, so i'm not worried about the fact that i'm still pregnant.  the only thing that's remotely difficult at this point is not knowing what each day will hold (and also getting up off the couch.)  i'm just waiting it out now.

just thought i'd give an update!


i'm trying to come up with a name for that phenomenon in which you happen across the facebook page of someone you went to high school with and they now look like...a grown up.  like, that guy who used to be some big shot who now just looks like a middle school basketball coach or someone you'd buy insurance from.  or that crazy drama kid who is now, and looks like, a banker.  or that nerdy kid who grew up to, well, look exactly like you thought he would and now he does taxes, so you're kind of surprised at how well you could see that one coming.

and what about when they not only start looking like adults, but they also start going by grown-up names?  like, instead of 'richy' they're 'rick' now.  or instead of 'terry' they're 'terrance.'  or instead of whatever douchey high school nickname they had (usually involving their first initial and then some kind of misspelled noun or adjective), they're now going by something normal, like darren.

is that scenario weirder than when you stumble across someone's facebook and they're still the same person, with the same nickname, doing the same stuff they did in high school?

i can't decide which is more strange.  your thoughts?

let's play a drinking game - drink a sprite for every time i say 'text' and see how long you can go before your bladder explodes.

okay, i have a bone to pick with you guys.

before i got texting (which was only within the last couple of months), i had no idea there was texting etiquette (textiquette?) that i would have to learn to navigate.  and you people never told me.

my biggest question is: who gets the last word?  like, if someone texts you some kind of factual information, do you have to respond?

if you're texting back and forth but you run out of junk to say, or you have to go change a diaper, can you just...not respond?  is that okay, or rude?

why do people insist on texting things like 'ok' and other totally pointless crap?  if i texted a brief informative message to your specific phone number, i probably just assumed you got it.  then my phone dings and gives me that heart attack that only introverts get when unexpected communication crops up.

how long is too long to wait before responding to a text?  minutes?  hours?  days?  sometimes, i can't find my phone, so i can't respond right away.  other times, previously-mentioned introversion kills my motivation to even see what the text says, much less respond.  other times i'm driving or holding a conversation with a real-life, flesh-and-blood human being; in either case, i refuse to check and/or respond to texts.  but how long do i have before i look like a d-bag for not responding?

does it cost extra for me to receive group texts from people with smart phones?  this is probably a question for my u.s. cellular guy, but maybe you know.  and if i respond to a group text, how do i know it's getting sent to just the original sender or the whole group?

is it okay to send texts that you know have spelling errors but are too lazy to want to correct?

i'm sure i have more questions, considering i'm basically a toddler in the world of texting.  but i feel that this will suffice for now.  and you must respond - you owe me big for not giving me a heads-up about all of this.

the weekly 'what's up.'

this baby is officially the farthest overdue i've ever gone (atticus was five days late).  and i had suspected that because of all the physical activity involved in moving and hauling and unpacking boxes, she would come earlier than the rest.  shows how much i know.

oh, just taking a walk, trying to jumpstart labor, and the paparazzi were out as thick as flies.  i just want to live a normal life!

atticus ended up climbing his first tree over at paul and jenni's.  i was so shocked to see these photos (originally taken on todd's phone) - atticus is not typically the tree-climbing type.  but he got even higher than this!

the kids and i potted up some garden mums, though i suspect i left them a little too long in the nursery pots beforehand and they're all looking mostly dead at this given moment.  we'll see what happens.

i was about to say that this week was really not much different from any other (you know, grocery shopping, changing diapers, not going into labor), and then i remembered that it started off with our sixth anniversary, which i failed to blog about. whoops. so expect a belated and mushy post sometime next week.

the anniversary day itself was rather uneventful: while i had joked on facebook about braving the state fair in my hugely pregnant and on-my-due-date condition, we really didn't think it was a great idea to venture that far away from home or the hospital (i've heard of home births and hospital births, but i don't really think 'fair births' are a thing. for human people, at least). so instead, we stayed home and i spent two hours pulling our vacuums apart in an attempt to get them working again. yes, i said TWO vacuums - this wool rug is going to be the death of me. and/or my bissel and/or my shopvac.

on sunday, my friend jenni and i spent some time shopping and rearranging furniture and hanging curtains and eating specialty meats and cheeses in an attempt to get the house feeling more homey. what can i say, i guess i'm nesting. (who am i kidding? i've been 'nesting' since we moved in. i think it's less pregnancy-related than it is related to the fact that i'm tired of living in a cornmaze of moving boxes.)

tuesday was the day i didn't go into labor again.

wednesday, finneas barfed on my new rug.

yesterday i had a chiropractic adjustment and am hoping that, as a result, this kid turns around and sees herself to the door.

which brings us to today: still pregnant, still having serious contractions, still drowning all my sorrows in chocolate chip cookies and pinterest.  so, like i said, not really much different than any other week.

happy friday!

*hey, whisper whisper, i have another contributing post on the candeo prayer blog today.  head on over and check it out!

oops, i did it again.

aah, that song brings memories of the original ke$ha.

anyway.  i thought i was in labor again on monday night.  so guess what i did? i called my mom and sister to come because 'THIS IS IT!'  and come they did.  and then go home the next day they did, after nothing ended up happening (besides me crying and kicking some stuff).

BUT.  i went to see my midwife, who discovered the baby is face-up instead of in the normal face-down position.  not to get too science-talk on you, but apparently her weird positioning is putting uneven pressure on my cervix (yikes.  why can i not even type that without getting the creeps?), which causes my body to start and stop labor.  so there really is a valid, scientific reason for my cluelessness!  which is more reassuring than it should be, really.  i just like to know that i'm not being an idiot for no reason.

so, i have a chiro appointment scheduled for this morning to hopefully get her to flip around.  (i SWEAR by chiropractors for stuff like this. my awesome doctor in ames got penelope out of the breech position - twice - and also did a specific adjustment to send me into labor; she was born within 24 hours, and the only one of my kids to be born before her due date.  take-away point: find an awesome chiropractor and rely on them to fix anything that goes wrong in your life.)

really, though, this is getting ridiculous.  i am worried that i won't be convinced that it's labor when it IS actually labor, and i'll end up waiting too long to go to the hospital, so then i'll have some crazy homebirth and i'll get my pretty new rug all nasty and then have to bite the umbilical cord free by myself.  that will be super gross and sad, and all because my crazy cervix is sending drunk texts to the rest of me. 

but i guess it's like i always say, all i can do is cross my fingers that i won't have to chew through my baby's umbilical cord when that time actually comes.

video vednesday: too much 'unexpected mustache.'

orabrush: because my advice is pointless if your breath smells like dumpster juice.

thanks to michelle and thad for introducing us to rhett and link!

getting to the bottom of important things with paige van voorst, P.I.

a while ago, i posted a confession regarding my not-so-secret love for ke$ha's music.  (actually, in searching for that post in my archives, i realized i write about ke$ha a lot.  i guess that just reiterates my point.)  in response, my friend amanda told me that ke$ha made her own not-so-secret confession that she drank her own urine because someone told her it was good for her.

i have been noodling on this lately, and it makes me wonder: when was the last time ke$ha did something - anything - based solely on the principle that it was good for her?  like, if someone was all, 'ke$ha, maybe you should drink a glass of milk.  it's good for you,' what would she do?  would she drink the milk?  because she doesn't really strike me as a milk-drinker, but maybe she would be if someone would just speak up about the health benefits of it.

and if so, then i wonder if the very reason that ke$ha is how she is (and are who she are) boils down to terrible health education?  like, no one has ever mentioned that she should maybe consume more plant foods and less urine and alcohol per day?  and in that case, how can you not feel bad for her?  she is the victim of a flawed education system.

if she is not the recipient of a very poor health education, she probs just felt like drinking her own urine, health considerations aside.  and if i know ke$ha (and i think i do) i kind of feel like maybe that is actually what was happening.  she just felt like it.  and that's a pretty bold move.

quandary solved?


on fridays, we go out to eat and frequently get some kind of treat for the kids.  last friday, we took the kids to hardee's, which atticus was SUPER enthusiastic about ('this is a good restaurant! this is a REALLY good restaurant!') then we took them to the local dairy/produce outlet and got them ice cream.  this was their response:

on saturday, we went 'amishing' with some friends, which i'll write a whole post on later.  but i'll just say now that it was awesome.

at an amish farm, where we just kind of made ourselves at home.

sunday, todd mowed the lawn again, which means he dug out his headphones again, which means this happened again:

monday, our air conditioner crapped out (like how i b&w'd this photo for dramatic flair?) so we got to call in the experts and have them fix it.  excellent.

also on monday, i thought i had gone into labor.  i had not.  i came home from the midwives' office super tired and sad, and atticus crawled up on the couch with me, snuggled, hugged me, and kept telling me he loves me.  he was so sweet.

in other preggo news, i hit the big 4-0.  

(if you look closely, you can get a sneak-peek at some of the progress in our entryway.  that bright white trim and that hot mama rug?  they make me want to pass out, if i'm being honest with you.  once i get some color on the walls and a few other projects done in there, i'll show some before-and-afters.)

penelope discovered the bliss that is operating a kitchenaid:

and lastly, the kids got to eat some lollipops that i bought a REALLY long time ago (as in, i-only-had-two-kids-then, long time ago) and hadn't gotten around to giving them yet.  yuck, but whatever.  they liked them.  finn got a dumdum.

and this basically sums up where we ended up after sucker night:

the end.  happy weekend!

in case you missed it, this week's blog posts included one in which i sound like i'm trying to sell you a hooker at the end, and also one in which i 'microsoft paint'ed mark zuckerberg's head onto a female chinese basketball player's body.

prepare to be underwhelmed.

you know how sometimes you don't feel like acting like a turd? 

well, today i don't feel like acting like a turd, so i wasn't going to blog.  but then i figured if i didn't blog, everyone would think i may have gone into labor, which is not the case.  and then i realized that, as long as i stay pregnant, i have unlimited post material for this blog.

so today i'm going to blog about how i'm not going to blog but how i am also not in labor.

and there is my blog post.  happy thursday fun time huzzah!

video vednesday: here's the computer tutor herself, kim kommando.

it says, are you sure you really want to do this?  and i'll say 'no,' because i'm not sure.

thanks, lisagrace, for introducing me to kim kommando and her excellent shoulder pads.  and also DOS 6 and this newfangled machine that's just like a tv and a typewriter.

head over to the candeo blog, where today's post was written by yours truly.

why i'm forced to post this hastily illustrated, and admittedly androgynous and ugly, picture of a baby.

it's because my own real-life, feminine and cute-as-a-button (or so i hope and assume) baby is not here yet.

(kay, srrsly, why do i hate that above baby so much?  i think it's the pig nose or the way i gave up trying when drawing the melty-looking mouth.  either way, if i met that baby in real life, i think i would have to suppress an urge to chuck it in a lake.  and that type of urge is not typical for me, so that's how i know i especially hate that baby above.)

yeah, i know i posted it on facebook yesterday that we were on our way toward seeing baby schaeffer.  as it turns out, people are sometimes wrong, which makes them inadvertent liars.  social media really only exacerbates this problem, as i'm finding out.  so here is where i explain myself.

i was woken up at 6:15 yesterday morning by some crazy-strong contractions and i was all like, 'labor yes or labor no?'  so i waited until i'd had a couple more to be all, 'labor probs!'  so i called my mom and my sister to tell them to be prepared to come this way, but not to leave yet, because i didn't want to jump the gun.  about half an hour later, with contractions still going strong, i called them again to tell them to start the drive (they each have to come from around two hours away) because this was it!  and then, like a noob, i decided to post our 'big news' on facebook.

and then it was like mark zuckerberg himself jumped out and shot-blocked me.  like this, only less pixelated:

i kept having contractions on and off throughout the day, some of which were really intense, but they never really seemed to get serious about pushing this baby out.  finally, around five, i went in to the doctor to be checked, and i was all, 'please give me some good news.'  and she was all, 'i think you're maybe dilated'  and i'm not going to lie, i cried a lot, then i came home and laid in bed for a while and cried some more, then i ate nachos and jalapenos and popcorn and a huge snickers bar for dinner, food allergies be darned.

it was just really disappointing to have spent the whole day thinking i would get to meet her, and then come home empty-handed.  it was hard to come back to the house where all her tiny clothes and diapers and things were standing ready, after really believing all day that she'd come home to fill them, and to not have anything to show for the day.  i know i didn't suffer any actual loss, but it felt a little grievous.  plus, i felt stupid for having told people and then needing to go back and play indian giver.

so there you have it:  why i spread misleading information on the internet and got you all riled up, why i'm still giantly pregnant, and why my laptop is covered in popcorn butter and i'm dealing with a horrible stomach ache.  everything is the worst.

i like to call it 'laura lotion,' even though that sounds kind of weird.

today i would like to do a product endorsement, because it seems that's what professional bloggers spend an ample amount of time doing, and i'm in it to win it.  although, i'm not being paid for this or any other blogging i do, so it's kind of different in that regard.  also, the person who makes and sells this product has no idea i'm endorsing it.  maybe she wouldn't endorse me endorsing it.  but whatever, i don't even care.  you guys HAVE to know that i have found the. most. amazing. lotion on the planet.

i can hear you being all, 'who cares?'  and i'm all, 'reality slap!  YOU SHOULD.'

this stuff is magical.  when i first heard about it, it was when a bunch of friends were freaking.out. about how awesome it is, so i just had to ask laura (who makes it) what's in it - the urine of a thousand virgins?  unicorn tears?  and she was all, 'no, just some natural oils and beeswax and also some leprechaun kneecaps.'  so it sounds like it's not entirely humanely sourced, but i'm willing to sacrifice the mobility of a few leprechauns for the cause.

still don't believe that this lotion is earth-shattering?  let me stroke your face with my baby-soft hand.  you'll feel like you're being given a thousand tiny eskimo kisses from a marshmallow peep.  trust me.  it's that soft.

also, holding off on the hyperbolic sales pitch for a sec, it really did cure finneas' horrible head-eczema.  (it was gross.  now it's not.)  i also use it on my face at night and have noticed a HUGE difference in my under-eye bags and overall tone (i look less like an old-lady smoker than i did, which i'm grateful for), so i started putting it on my belly too, just in case it can prevent stretchmarks.  i bet it can - leprechaun kneecaps, people!

anyway.  just thought i'd share the news:  it's awesome.  it's all-natural (five ingredients, all of which you could eat if you wanted, but some of which you maybe wouldn't want to, like beeswax).  it's locally made.  it's sensitive enough for tiny baby skin.  it actually heals skin issues, rather than just masks them.  a $12 jar of it lasts forever.  it's packaged in glass, if that makes a difference to you.  i'm really not seeing a downside, other than that i don't believe laura accepts payment in the form of giant sloppy italian-family-style kisses.  (i really feel like we would all win in that scenario, but apparently you have to be careful these days with who you grab by the face and slobber on.  it really makes me wonder what our country is coming to, but that's a post for another day.)

i would just like to reiterate that i don't get anything for spreading the news.  just thought i'd be a stand-up girl and stop being so hoardy with my insider info.  let me know if you want me to get you hooked up with some sweet softness.  (scratch that wording - it sounds gross.  and maybe illegal.  but you know what i mean.  hopefully.)

our week in 'what's up.'

this week is kind of photo-heavy, so let's just do a list instead of my usual wordy explanations, yes?

saturday: tax-free shopping day, so we went to waterloo to buy clothes for the kids.  then we went out for pizza and todd got them cookies as an after-dinner treat, so this happened:

(this photo isn't blurry, this is just how he looked.)

also, todd mowed the lawn, a chore made infinitely more enjoyable by the discovery of these bad boys:

(the headphones.  the headphones are the bad boys.)

sunday: headed to coralville to attend the service at another 'sister-y' church plant, and then visited my dad and his wife for lunch.  had some new friends over for dinner.  stopped being able to feel my right leg.

monday: watched some friends' kids while they went to connection group.  penelope developed a new dance, to a little diddy she made up about cookies.  the dance was epic, if you can't tell.

tuesday: BIG day.  finneas got these monster feet slippers from a friend, and has since refused to take them off.  he finds them hilarious. i agree.  penelope tried her first BLT.  had an unfounded response, but it's okay because she's cute.  also, i had a meltdown about how we are completely unprepared to bring home a baby, so todd came home with a big box of diapers, a box of giant postpartum-caliber pads, and our very first not-a-hand-me-down carseat!  lastly, atticus accomplished his first entirely-solo puzzle completion.

(also, finn found where we keep the mountain dew.)


wednesday: scrambled eggs for dinner.  i think that sums it up.

thursday: went to the chiropractor.  can feel my leg again.  also went grocery shopping. (have i mentioned i've started cooking real meals again? with a menu plan? and on a gas stove?!  lap of luxury here, people.)

which brings us to today.

i suppose i can also say that, in pregnancy news, i am 39 weeks along and my belly is comically large.

(not sure what's up with the 'knocked-up-miss-america' arm i have going on here, other than i do know i was trying to camouflage my pretty serious 'knocked-up-peter-griffin' arm.)

(the first time i saw this photo, i thought that baby doll down in the corner was finneas.  totally creepy.)

and just because it's cute:

happy friday, y'all.

taking out the trash.

there are a lot of things about our new house and community that i'm loving - and am honestly surprised that i'm loving.  for instance, i'm kind of loving our tinier house and how much 'home-ier' it is already than our last house was.  totally surprised by that.  however, there are a couple things i'm having to force myself to get used to and am definitely not loving.

today, i would like to gripe about the trash service here.

in story city, the trash guys would come in the morning, drive up the street one time emptying all trash cans along the way, and be done with it.  

here, they drive up the street one time, examining all the trash cans on one side and putting stickers on ones that are too full.  then they drive back down the street in the other direction, stickering the cans on that side.  then later, they drive by again, emptying out the cans on one side of the street.  then later, they drive by yet again, emptying the cans on the opposite side.  it is seriously an all-day affair and the most inefficient thing i have ever watched.  and i have watched preschoolers put together entire puzzles by pure trial and error.

today, the trash guys drove by on their first 'sticker' lap, and moved our can across the street to the middle of the neighbor's yard.  no idea why.  so i went over brought it back.  then i left to go to hobby lobby.  by the time i got back, our trash had been emptied, but then our can had been dumped over on its side onto the middle of our driveway for some unknown reason.  i suspect they were T.O.'d that i had reclaimed my garbage from the neighbor's yard and did it on purpose, but i'm also a bit of a conspiracy theorist. 

it makes no sense whatsoever.  i seriously hate the trash service here.  i know it's a dumb thing to hate, but it speaks to the very heart of inefficiency, and i, for one, hate dysfunction on that level.  also, i feel like i should probably complain more about stuff because i'm generally lacking in that area of my life.

and just so you don't think that all i am is a dirtbag who only complains about petty, stupid stuff, you should head over to the candeo launch blog and read my contributing post we shouldn't be complaining about petty, stupid stuff.

video vednesday: look at how funky he is! i will never be hip.

(as todd said, check out how she releases her mystical powers of hipness.) (as i said, check out that guy's crop top.)

i promise that i'll someday stop flooding the blog with house updates.

but today is not that day.  though i'm starting to think i need to back off on the house crashing a bit and focus on bringing this baby home in like a week and a half.  washing (after first locating) and putting away baby clothes is probably a more urgent matter than painting trim, but i just can't stop.  i'm having a lot of fun making this a 'home' for us. 
as todd pointed out earlier this week, we have put more effort and more of our personality into this home in the last three weeks than we did into our old house in the entire two years we lived there!  the transformation process is seriously addictive - every time i get a project finished, i'm fueled to do something else, just because it's crazy what a difference just a little more work can make.

so i figured i'd show you some 'in progress' shots of our living room.  here's a photo from our inspection.  (please forgive my creepiness in posting a photo with the previous owners' stuff; we forgot to take shots of the room empty before doing any work to it, so these are our only 'before' pictures.)



(these were taken with the same camera and lens, although i should have compared either two vertical photos or two horizontal photos.  i hate it when it the quality of before/after comparisons are drastically different; so, sorry about that.)

and a few more...

that basket on the console table will eventually be turned into a big honking ol' drum shade hanging in the middle of the room.


i still have a long way to go - we need to hang the new light fixture, get some different throw pillows on the couch, add some lamps and curtains, hang art, get a matching little table for that one in the middle so we can push them together and make more of a coffee table...and on and on...but i think the difference is remarkable already!  it temporarily soothes some of the stress that comes from knowing that a newborn will be wreaking havok here shortly.