Saturday, May 29, 2010


I've been wondering this week why I just can't have a normal pregnancy. Last weekend I started to have some contractions, nothing major they don't hurt, and I'm almost positive they are Braxton Hicks. After doing some research it's completely normal, but I also felt like I had a UTI as well. I sent an email to a nurse and doctor asking about an antibiotic I could take for the UTI and also mentioned the contractions. Little did I know they go hand and hand, which can explain part of my preterm labor with Calvin because I had a UTI pretty much my whole 3rd trimester.

So they were a little concerned and wanted me to come out as soon as possible for a checkup. We had planned a mid way appointment but were trying to figure out the details of the trip as our supervisor is moving and there's a lot of work stuff to be done, and we'd like to spend time with them too because we'll miss them tremendously. I really wanted to head out once my antibiotic was finished but I was overruled. So I leave either Sunday or Monday.

Calvin's also accompanying me so he can see the surgeon about a little operation he's going to have come fall. This will be a first for me to travel internationally without any help; I've traveled twice alone with Calvin but not internationally. Thank goodness that people here are very helpful with children and we've done this trip many times I know where I'm going and can direct a taxi. It should be an adventure. I'm not looking forward to the going as much as the coming back. Getting through customs is a bit of a zoo, especially with a small child. You're literally pushed through the line when they see you have a child. It's nice but also a little crazy too. (But that's another post in itself.)

I really bounce back between being worried, afraid, feeling this trip is a little silly, and completely calm about everything at the same time. It will be good to see a real doctor and we hope to find out if we'll have another little boy running around our home or a little girl. Fun! Fun! Fun!

Oh and did I mention Calvin's doing great potty training, it's much easier when you can just pull down you child's pants in public and go when he has the urge. Haven't quite figured out how we'll do the airport since they have a squatty potty. Any suggestions? (Below is a squatty potty, the type you'll find in most public places here.)

Thursday, May 27, 2010

good stuff

You know what was the best Mother's Day present?

Being finished with morning sickness!!! We splurged and bought a kilo of strawberries and celebrated with strawberry shortcake. Of course I had to teach Calvin the proper way to eat strawberry shortcake, drenched in cream, yum. Of course he loved it! I'm pretty sure you have to grow up eating it this way, Marvin hasn't yet embraced the cream soaked shortcake.
You know what else is amazing, chocolate chip cookie dough truffles. They don't contain any eggs so they are completly safe to eat, but oh my were these things rich. If you make them add a bit of salt to the dough, maybe 1/2 t., it tastes much better. I'd also add a step after the chilling process is finished. I recommend freezing the cookie dough balls after they have been formed before dipping them in chocolate. It will add some more time, but you'll end up with a prettier truffle and it will be much easier to dip.

Friday, May 21, 2010

An Interesting Combination

I have been EXHAUSTED recently. Language study is exhausting in itself then you throw in being pregnant and allergies in the mix and it's a perfect combination for being extremely tired all day long. Most days I fall asleep before Calvin does, and if I by some miracle I'm still awake after he's gone to bed my minutes are limited. The other night I was talking to Marvin and I finished my sentence and the next second I was out. Regardless of how much sleep I may be getting it just never seems like enough.

I am wondering what happened to that surge of energy you're suppose to get in your second trimester? I'd could really use some!

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Don't forget the Bread

Calvin literally does not stop talking from the moment he wakes up till he goes to bed. He's such a hoot too. He's incorporated a lot of what we say in his speech now. It's made us stop and think about how often we truly say words like, maybe and other words like darn it.

He also has very specific ways things should be said, for instance peanut butter and jelly is, peanut butter, jelly and bread, how silly of us to forget the bread. Sometimes the way he words things isn't always the shortest for instance, smoothies are ice, blueberries, honey, and yogurt. With a big emphasis on HONEY.

He's also added a few new local words to his vocab and seems eager to learn new words every day. Since it's warmed up kids have suddenly come out of the woodworks and Calvin loves any chance he can get to play with kids. He'll often look out our window and if there are kids on the playground run to the door and try to put his shoes on and announces that he's going to go play with the kids. I will admit there's something in this mama's heart that just wants him to have a good local buddy to pal around with on the playground outside our apartment. But to have a good buddy you kind of need to be able to talk to him.
Marvin and I have been thinking a lot about local preschool recently. There is so much to think about. We know it would be instrumental in helping his language grow beyond what we or a nanny could ever teach him, yet thinking about my little man going to preschool all morning long is hard. Unfortunately we have to start thinking through some of these things since we live in a culture of who you know gets you places and slot in a preschool class. But for the meantime I'll enjoy our time together, picking and helping the dandelion population expand. It's a good thing locals love them because they are everywhere.

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Macgyver Skills

What would we do without google? Seriously when I have a question I usually ask google. For example, this winter when the olympics were on and all they were showing in this country was curling, a quick google search gave us a better understanding of what they were doing.
Well google and you tube came to our rescue last week. It was bedtime and Calvin didn't take it so well, he insisted that he already went to sleep that day. His arguement was pretty good but obviously wasn't winning the battle, so he ran into the kitchen and closed the door and locked it. Of course he couldn't get it unlocked, and the hinges were on his side of the door. Thanks to you tube and a pair of tweezers we now know how to pick a lock. We never thought we'd have a need for that skill!

Friday, May 14, 2010

Oh the Drama

....over a bandaid.
Can you believe it, Calvin's never had a need for a band aid before? Sure we had a few scraped knees last summer but nothing major. Well last week Calvin was playing with Marvin's tape measurer and it gave him a little cut on his finger, nothing major, so we broke out the bandaids.

Now this band aid was a bigger deal than the actual cut. He was so excited about his Diego band aid. The drama began as he went to bed, he started picking at the band aid and eventually it came off, having a tired boy amplified the situation. He would not let it go, so I caved and got him another one, which he again tried to take off, thankfully he fell asleep. But first thing in the morning we had a highly distraught little boy pouring tears over his band aid that was now stuck together and not on his finger. Now there's not much reasoning to be had with a grumpy determined 2 year old. He was determined enough to figure out how to open it up again and for the rest of the day his beloved band aid was rotated from finger to finger.
Since then we've had many learning lessons about what warrants a band aid, and that little stinker even tried to hurt his finger again with the tape measurer just to get another one, thankfully he was unsuccessful. He did have another band aid incident this past week and thankfully we escaped with only one, and a little less drama.

May Day in the Mountains

Our friends invited us to join them on a trip to the Mountains to celebrate May's birthday. I was a little apprehensive because at the time I was still feeling like I was car sick all day, the windy roads up the mountains did not sound appealing, but since I had a couple of good days we agreed to go with them.

The drive was fine, we didn't have to pull over, PTL and so thankful to be spared from that embarassment. We arrived a little after 7:30 p.m., and got checked into the hotel and then around 8:30-9:00 headed outside to start a fire to grill our shashlik, the local kebabs. I'm so very thankful I ate before we left because I've actually had an appetite lately and would have been starving. It was dark as we went outside and of course the lights by the little shelter weren't working, it took about 30 minutes for the staff to figure out how to turn them on. In the mean time Calvin was having a blast throwing things in the little stream that ran along side the shelter. The water was freezing and I was so paranoid that he would fall in, especially since it was dark and we couldn't see anything.

Once the guys got the fire going he enjoyed watching that for a while, then it was back to throwing things into the water. Now shashlik takes FOREVER to make. You need good hot coals before you can even cook the meat, then the meat takes a while to cook. So by the time they were ready to eat it was 11:00 p.m. Calvin and I were both were so exhausted.

The next day we woke up had breakfast in the cafe at the hotel (a malt-o-meal type cereal and eggs, very good) and piddled around before finally driving up to the mountains. Calvin and I only went up one lift because I was already having some headaches and well I'm a little paranoid about this pregnacy since I had some complications with Calvin.
He loved playing in the snow before everyone else went up the lifts and then we just waited for everyone to come back. We ate at a little cafe then went back out to play a bit. Unfortunately since there were cafes everywhere there was also broken glass in all the good snow playing spots that were out of the path of the skiiers coming off the run. So it was slightly stressfull.
Thankfully the rest of our group arrived and May, her daughter and us headed back to the hotel for nap time. The rest of the day was beautiful. We enjoyed hanging out at the hotel just chatting, which I loved.
You may be wondering where Marvin was, well he was skiing, for the first time ever. It was quite a surprise as we didn't think he'd be doing this, but thankfully he brought his ski bibs. Now this isn't the best mountain to learn on and it didn't help that they went clear to the top to start. Marvin's only instructions were as followed, "If you want to turn do this. (then Ute showed him how to move his skiis)" Then Ute proceeds to say, "Okay go ahead". It was an adventure for sure. The next time Marvin goes skiing he's bringing someone who can give him a little more instruction.
On the way home May and I were talking about the next time we do this we'd leave the kids at home. I agreed wholeheartedly!!! We had barely started moving on our journey back home and I had a little boy slumped over sleeping hard in my lap. Overall it was a fun but EXHAUSTING trip, so glad we went!

Can you guess who went skiing???? Guess who also forget to bring sunscreen????

Monday, May 10, 2010

Love It!

While we were out on our visa run I picked up the most adorable fabric at the bazaar in hopes to transform it into some cute summer skirts that can accommodate my growing belly. I had the best time being overwhelmed by the selections. It truly was a hunt to find the best fabric as they had tables of pre cut fabric piled on top of each other. I would have stopped to take a few pictures but I was too busy finding the perfect fabric. I loved it, but to a non fabric lover it must have looked like a mess. I found some great deals and I'm so glad I ventured to the bazaar as everything was much cheaper than any fabric store I have stepped into since leaving America.

So far all my normal clothes are still fitting, so I haven't felt pressured to sew them yet. It was VE day this weekend and Saturday we stayed close to home to be on the safe side. So it was the perfect day to turn this fabric into some adorable summer skirts. However I only finished one, I always think I can accomplish more than I truly can during nap time, somehow I haven't quite figured that out. I made the Lilly Skirt and it was so easy. I had so much fun sewing with elastic tread for the 1st time. It was so easy, not as intimidating as once thought, so watch out world I have a new skill. I'm hoping to bust out another skirt today, since I don't have language tomorrow.

So here's the picture of my first summer skirt and my first "belly" picture, the waist of the skirt added a little to the "baby belly", but I don't really mind one bit. I'm 4 months along (16 weeks)and feeling better but the nausea still hasn't dissipated entirely, thankfully I want to eat now, you have no idea how much of a blessing that is.

Sunday, May 09, 2010

It's a .....

Baby! Well we've had two ultrasounds one told us it was a girl and another that told us that it was a boy. I guess we'll wait another few weeks before we know for sure. We have been asking Calvin what he thinks and here's what he told us. (This video was when I was 14 weeks along, after we told him how big the baby was he said, "hold on" ran to the kitchen grabbed a lemon and was so proud.)

We're working on that gender thing right now. Apparently since most babies don't have hair they're easily mistaken for boys in Calvin's mind right now.

Happy Mother's Day out there to all the moms in our world. Especially my mom and my mother-in-law. Being a mom has opened my eyes to how awesome our own moms are. Thanks for everything you've done for us and continue to do. We all love you!

Thursday, May 06, 2010

Just want to bottle it up

Marvin and I were talking about all the things we just love hearing Calvin say recently. He's at that age where he's just so stinkin cute when he talks. Sometimes I just wish Calvin would always say oops like "ewwps" and "well-woh" for yellow. But then Marvin reminded me that he's glad he won't because he'd be picked on tremendously. But I do want to bottle them up and remember them forever.

He's also become quite observant and has a memory like none other. We have to be sure we are serious about our promises or else we hear something like, "memer (remember), I go outside today. Here are a few things he said recently that have made us smile.

Marvin was leaving for work one morning this week and as he was about to walk out the door Calvin said, "Hold on Dadda get trash." Marvin usually takes the trash out each morning when he heads to the office and this particular morning he forgot, so glad we have a cute little reminder and I no longer have to remind Marvin when he forgets. Thanks buddy.

This week Calvin and I went to the grocery store and during language the only sweets I had in the house were Calvin's potty reward M&Ms, so of course I had to serve them because it would have been rude not to. After he saw I was giving away his M&Ms I told him we were going to the store later so we could buy some new ones. Unfortunately I only brought a certain amount of money with me and as I was mentally calculating how much I was spending I realized I was cutting it close and still had to pay for a taxi home, so I didn't buy the M&Ms. Before we got to the cash register I warned him that I didn't have enough money to buy M&Ms today, he was a little disappointed but since I was buying him a juice box he didn't seem to mind too much. Then yesterday while we were cleaning up the house he found a coin, worth about 3 cents, he came running up to me and said, "Mama have money, put my shoes on and go buy M&Ms." What a stinker, when I told him that wasn't enough money to buy M&Ms he looked at me like I was crazy. Then again today we were playing play dough and he brought up the M&Ms again only this time he pointed out that "Dada has money."

Wednesday, May 05, 2010

Had I only known

Oh so apparently Calvin didn't have the flu bug last week. My language teacher told me that his stomach was just cold. What I need to do next time is iron a cloth and tie it on his belly. We could have been spared all the yuck if we had only known.
Oh and sometimes it's really hard not to laugh when people tell us these things.

Tuesday, May 04, 2010


A couple weeks ago Calvin and I went out for a little walk and we spotted a dog with some serious problems. It was having all sorts of muscle spams, it's body was literally jolting and looked really sick. We were at the playground when I spotted it so we waited a bit till it was off the path. Thankfully we haven't seen the dog again.

However a few days later Marvin spotted another dog displaying the same symptoms. We both had our suspicions, but didn't think about it again till today when I did a little google search on rabies symptoms. Sure enough all signs of rabies, sweet. Hopefully that will be the last we see of this strange behavior in our neighborhood stray animals especially since it's prime outdoor time, well if it ever stops raining and warms up.

Monday, May 03, 2010

It's still there....... love for aprons that is! My friend had a birthday this weekend and I was thinking through what to give her and thought about making her an apron. I had a little steam left in me one evening and after browsing through a few apron sites I found this apron and loved a few features about it. This would be the sweetest little girl's apron and I have and the perfect color combo in my head.

But of course it's not me to copy something without putting my own twist on it. I loved the gathered skirt but I wanted it a little more fitted top and a little longer than the inspiration photo. I cut 2 bodice pieces 9 1/2 inch long by 22 inches (I was running short of fabric so to make the most out of what I had so I cut my fabric so that the bottom of the bodice was on the selvage. This way I didn't have to hem this part. I'd recommend cutting your first piece 10 1/2 inches so that you'll have plenty of room for a hem.)

details of gathered skirt apron

Since I'm more of a curved line girl rather than a straight line girl, I then took both pieces of the bodice with them right sides together, folded them in half and added a scoop neck. From the end of the scoop I measured over about 2 1/2 inches for the neck strap, then also scooped out the top corners for the arm holes. (I first held it up to myself to figure out how far to cut.) Since this was a gift I wanted it to be adjustable so I used a halterish neck tie and an traditional tie back rather than the adorable straps in my inspiration photo.

I gathered the skirt using a basting stitch and then pulling it manually (oh how how I'd love to find a gathering foot someday). I of course had already hemmed the sides and bottom of the apron skirt. Next I sewed my bodice scooped neck and arm "holes" leaving the bottom open as well as where my ties attached. I then enclosed my straps in the bodice, ironed and pinned it shut. Lastly I tucked the skirt in the bottom end of the the bodice, and pinned it shut. Sewing a seam around the entire bodice.

gathered take two

I imagine if you've read everything till now you actually know what I'm talking about, so go ahead I dare you create your own, but make sure you send me a picture.