Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Bare Minimum

My astronomer friend Kevin would always say, "The C gets the degree!" But seriously, we were all too nerdy to be pulling C's. However, I'm pretty sure none of us (except Ryan) had the 4.0 thing going on either.

This post is all about the bare minimum, because although Adam just worked a miracle and got Adeline down for the night again, she will probably be crying again in the next hour, so I must hurry and only post the bare minimum. Also, I am on a slow slow computer, so I will only be able to upload a few pics too. Thwarted on every side. But not in dispair... something like that. If I remember my bible. Barely.

I am going to update you to my situation first. I don't really sleep anymore. Even if I get the chance to sleep, my body doesn't want to do it. I am trying not to take on any more projects, because I already have so many that I haven't finished. I meant to make a bag and pillows when I went fabric shopping with Amy before any of us had kids. I still have not even cut out the pattern of the fabric, let alone started to sew it. This bums me out a little. I also have projects that are half-way done, and I'll probably be lucky to finish them in the next six months. But I know that I am getting better at doing things faster. I cooked dinner, I did the dishes, took off the bedsheets, washed the laundry, and put away a bit of laundry tonight, when I probably wouldn't have been able to do all those things before, in that amount of time. I also fed Adeline, both breastmilk and solids, tried to get her down, etc, all in that same amount of time. I have to see progress where progress is made and not be bummed that there is still so much left to do.

I REALLY wish I could find the time and the selfishness to exercise. I would love to be back at pre-pregnancy weight, and then onto pre-marriage weight. That would be swell. I should forget about sewing and crafting and focus on this. But looks and body shapes are so fleeting in this life, and the older we get, the more of an uphill battle it becomes. It is a source of strife for me. I'd rather focus on the things that are more lasting. Even if it is a fun craft that I give to somebody, like a card or a delicious recipe. Woe is me.

Oh, I've been reading Hugh Nibley. I have REALLY been enjoying it. He writes exactly all the things that I am so interested in. It's that Egyptologist/Biblical Archeologist in me!

Adam is doing great. He is really on his game as a 3L, and he will graduate in the spring. He is waiting to hear back from the Air Force JAG program, which we hope he will get accepted into. We don't know where we would be stationed. Things are still up in the air. Adam is the president of the Federalists Society at Wash U and he loves it. He has been able to plan and carry out fun debates and activities with delicious food, which he gets reimbursed for. His law school friends are very fun, and we karaoked with some and went to a Jainist festival and Hindu temple with another. I wore a sari! And probably looked like a dork! haha! Adam loves playing with Adeline. She is so fun. She was so giggly tonight. Adam is especially happy about the elections today and tonight, and he just loves watching all the results come in.

Adeline is a sweetheart. She laughs so much, and I was just realizing while I was playing with her today that she is like a fun toy that I get to play with ALL DAY! It's great! But on the other side of the coin, if you play with a toy for more than five hours a day, you get tired. I am tired. Adeline still has energy, and I just have to put her in her jumpy gym where she bounces like a banshee and wails and makes a racket and has the time of her life. And we just kind of shift her from toy to toy, mat to shakey chair. It's getting kind of ridiculous. And I bet that she'll be crawling soon. How I need to steam these carpets! They are disgusting! She was trying to gum them the other day and I was SO GROSSED OUT! Anyway, another project. Hopefully this one shoots to the top of the queue, it's important!

Okay, some pics of things we've done lately. The bare minimum. The highlights.

I finished ONE project. Of 100! I guess I should be happy.

Our darling Adeline was a cute little monkey for Halloween! Maybe I'll post some pics from Trunk-Or-Treat. Like, in a million years!

Adeline likes eating people food. And giving us the smileys!

Adeline had a happy 1st Halloween!

Adam made a lovely spinach and applewood bacon quiche. It was to die for!

Adeline and Mommy went to a spooky Mommy N Me.

Mommy felt the need to dress up like a tiger (for Halloween)

Family photo at the St Louis Zoo

Adeline is building up some nice leg muscles from playing all the day in this jumpy gym. Worth every Craigslist penny!

The end! Wow, I did it! Thanks Tuesday!

Updating on a Tuesday

Wow, I seem to only get in the mood to update on a Tuesday. What is it about a Tuesday? I also just paid some bills. I don't usually keep track of the day of the week, but maybe I tend to pay bills on a Tuesday too! Tuesday, you seem to be a productive day for me. But I still wish it was Friday!


Updating My Blogspot

How many entries do I need like this? Don't you love how I always say, "I'm going to update soon, sure I am!" But seriously, I hope that I do. I am thinking of fun things to post. But it is like so much of my life, a pipe-dream. Only 10% of what I want to do gets done. Maybe I need an assistant like some of these other friends who are teasingly asking for one on Facebook.

I am grateful that Adam is taking Adeline right now, so that I can even write how someday I will update this blog. Thanks Adam!

That's all from me. Adeline's doing great, although we're trying to figure out the whole get-her-to-sleep-in-her-crib thing, and the get-her-to-sleep-for-a-long-time thing.

Love you all. Thanks for reading. I do in fact read your comments. Maybe it's half-a-year after the fact, but I DO read those comments!

Love, Danelle

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Baby Pictures!

We had our baby! She is a sweet angel that likes to sleep lots and lots! Her name is Adeline and she was born May 16th, two days early from my due date!

But tonight she is busting my chops, and not sleeping like the typical angel she is/was. She just would not go down. Adam tried many times, then I tried some times, then Adam gave up and went to bed because he has to work in the morning, and I kept trying and started praying, and then started crying. I wonder if I will ever get up to 8 hours of sleep a night ever again... If I can get six, I'm pretty happy. Last night, I got 1. 1 hour. I got a couple more somewhere between 7am and 11am. Anyway, life just sucks right now. It's how it is. I will look forward to when Adeline sleeps through the night.

That's my life. I know many of you have already experienced these baby hardtimes, but that doesn't make it any less sucky for me. The end.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Interesting Pregnancy Observation

I think it's pretty darn amazing that I haven't been sick (as in a cold or flu - NOT counting nausea from morning sickness) for the last seven or eight months. You want to know my secret? I take good care of myself, and I've learned to say no to extracurricular activities.

I got pretty sick when I first started my job at Virbac. I was newly pregnant, pregnant ladies have generally lowered immune systems, and I was just getting my regular eight (more like seven) hours of sleep. One thing I learned about being pregnant -- it makes you so darn exhausted! I had heard of all the other things, the nausea, the gas, the bloating, the weight gain, being hungry all the time, etc. The exhaustion hit me like a ton of bricks! So after having this horrible hacking cough/cold, runny and stuffed up nose, and grossing out my boss and coworkers, I took a day or two off just in the second week that I started working at Virbac, I started REALLY listening to my body.

I started going to bed at 8 or 9pm. Or even 7pm. Adam would laugh at me because I'd fall asleep on the couch if I couldn't make it to my bed. I'd miss watching The Office or other tv shows that we like to watch together because MY BODY NEEDED THE SLEEP! I ditched book club and hadn't been to any Relief Society activities in awhile. If people called me to babysit their kids, I generally said no. It only happened twice that I remember. (I think I said yes to Emily Southerland, and she found me asleep on their couch at 11pm when they got back home. But Noah stayed asleep the whole time, he was very easy to watch. But I remember being in a daze heading out of her apt to my car. I had to wake up a little more before attempting to drive home.) So if you think I was a rude jerk, oh well, I was doing what was best for my baby and my body and my health! So suck it!

It was glorious getting 10 or 11 hours of sleep a night, and I needed it working full-time at my job AND being pregnant. It was exhausting. I did try to steer clear of naps, because then it's harder to fall asleep at night and get a long stretch that can really do wonders for the immune system.

Other things I did to benefit my health:

-Obviously, stayed away from sick people and washed my hands lots and lots.

-Made sure I got enough to eat. And I think my metabolism has gone way up! I don't think I was eating enough before and my body was kind of in starvation mode, and just holding onto fat and calories. (I actually lost weight during the first trimester, although I was eating about twice as much! But it was good food, not crap. And the baby was growing right on schedule.)

-Took multivitamins every day - I take fish oil, calcium, magnesium, blackstrap molasses on my cereal for iron, and a good multivitamin (did you know that most multivitamins have about the same stuff and amounts as prenatal vitamins, and cost a lot less? What a racket! Adam found this out just by comparing labels. Where the things are lessened you usually get in cereal anyway)

-Drink lots and lots and lots of water! I started carrying around two water bottles in my purse. Heavy but worth it! And pack snacks, you never know when you'll be waiting in line somewhere.

-I didn't eat crap. I craved salads and breads and whole grains. Everytime I had sweets I had a horrible horrible headache. And I only made that mistake a couple of times and then just laid off the sweets for most of the pregnancy. It was not worth it to eat the junk food! (Maybe I'll have another pregnancy down the road where I'll crave the crap, but I sure hope not!)

-Was not afraid to say NO! Go bug someone else that isn't pregnant! (Okay, I know a lot of you didn't know then because I hadn't told anyone, but don't lay on the guilt. I'm saying no for a reason, even if I'm not sharing it yet, not because I'm lazy.)

-Seriously though, I think the most important factor was GETTING ENOUGH SLEEP AT NIGHT!

So a bad cold went through the office where I worked about a month ago. Guess who was the only person who DIDN'T catch it?? Pretty amazing for a pregnant lady!

Okay, but now I'm being an idiot because I didn't get much sleep tonight. I don't know if I'm getting all hyped up and excited because I'm going to be having a baby very soon, two weeks or so. It's like the night before going on a trip, I usually can't sleep, although I know I really need it! I need to listen to my own advice!

Seriously good advice! Whether or not you are pregnant!!! Take good care of yourself and get plenty of rest!

When it rains, it pours

You get to hear from me lots and lots! I've been jobless for just a week and a half, and that energy needs to go somewhere!

Something funny -- perhaps many of you remember our psycho neighbors that live below us. The ones that were obsessed with us being noisy and always telling us to be quiet. Funny funny updates about that, very ironic.

Remember how I said I didn't know what we'd do if we had a baby, because the wife would probably spaz and we'd drive her insane and maybe she'd get us kicked out of the building... well I think I misjudged that a little bit.

And this is still speculation, but the update is that THEY'VE HAD A BABY. Okay, this is definitely old news now though. Their baby is probably a year old now! And I don't ever remember seeing her pregnant, so maybe she didn't necessarily have a baby, but a family member that has a baby moved in with them, or they adopted, or they are taking care of a family member's baby, etc. They have family visit them on Shabbat (Friday night) and they make a lot of noise. Did I mention they are Jewish? I don't know, and I don't feel like asking them if they had a baby. According to Occam's Razor, the simplest explanation is that THEY'VE HAD A BABY!

Their baby sometimes wakes me up at 4am. Good times! Okay, seriously though, their baby cries so quietly, it's not very noisy at all, and not a big deal. I usually go right back to sleep. And Adam doesn't even wake up in the first place. It's a real blessing. I forget that they have a baby.

Sometimes they watch tv and I think that they've got some serious subwoofers because the bass coming from them is noisier than their baby crying. I wonder if the husband likes to play Call of Duty or watch a lot of war-type movies like Saving Private Ryan, because those are the kinds of loud bass noises that I hear emanating from their apartment, bombs going off and loud explosions! But it's usually just noisy on weekends. And I don't really care. Sometimes I want to go knock on their door and give them a taste of their own medicine, "Can you quiet it down down there? It's just too loud and my knick knacks on my fireplace mantle are shaking from the bass!" Okay, but I pride myself on not being *that* anal. Although I imagine it and giggle to myself if I were to actually do that sort of ridiculous thing.

Okay, I forgot to dish, but one reason the wife was mad the day we were moving in was because her knick knacks were shaking on her shelves below. Yes, she is NOT an eighty-year-old crazy cat person, although this would be the perfect description of one. She is probably my age, maybe younger. She told me that herself later that day, she complained a few times that day -- what a glorious welcome -- and told me about the knick knacks shaking. I thought about it later and almost died laughing. Anyway, again, not our fault. I'm sorry that the floors probably are carpet straight to crappy plywood, no padding, and all our vibrations of us going up the stairs and into our apartment shake your knick knacks, but we are walking normally, not stomping around. You have a problem with that, take it up with the HOUSING and STOP ANNOYING US and making us walk around on tiptoe, like we are tiptoeing around eggshells. This is ridiculous! I hope an earthquakes comes (they happen a lot in MO) and all your knick knacks fall off your shelves and get broken. Who would you complain to then?

So I wonder --- I wonder if the wife was pregnant during the time she was being a nutburger and complaining to us about everything under the sun. Maybe she was seriously hormonal, and close to delivery, and not able to sleep at night, or any little thing would wake her up, like our creaky floorboards, and she just couldn't resist but come complaining to us. Pregnancy hormones can make you pretty rabid and crazy, and so can sleep deprivation. I think they've only knocked twice in the last year or so, since they've had the baby and all, telling us to be quiet. Or maybe they just realize how darn hypocritical it would be now that THEY HAVE A CRYING BABY?

I was wondering how they'd deal when I had a baby, and it was crying, and it was the middle of the night. Because it would seriously be the biggest hypocrisy if they came knocking on our door telling us to quiet our baby down, and I would either A) laugh in their faces or B) slap them in their faces, preferably A) because I'd be less likely to be sued or go to prison.

And I might not ever find out how they would/will react when I DO HAVE A CRYING BABY, BECAUSE THEY ARE MOVING! HAHAHAHAHAHA! If'n that isn't the most ironic bit of info of all?! I'm dying over here! Again, we didn't hear it from them, we heard it from our fun neighbor Mark from across the hall. Also Jewish. And very outgoing.

Those are the developments to the story. Thanks for tuning in. We also had some other neighbors move in, maybe in the last six months, and can I tell you, they have the noisiest toddler in the whole wide world??? They live directly across from our quiet-obsessed neighbors. But the moms have become friends and I think that they have playdates. So it's all good.

More about the noisy family. The wife is very nice and friendly. I met them as they were looking at the apartment, and again as they were moving in. Her son is the biggest brat EVER! He throws a lot of tantrums, which we get to hear. And the part that bugs me is that the wife leaves the front door to the apartment wide open, and his crying and screaming boomingly ECHOES around our stairwell. And she leaves it open for the good 20 minutes that he has his tantrums. That part blows my mind. I would shut that door faster than anything out of embarrassment! It's really obvious that the noise is severely augmented in our stairwell. You can hear every single word of what people are saying as they go up the stairs, we've heard cell phone conversations from our BACK BEDROOM!

And for a crying screaming kid who is in another logarithmic range of Decibels, it doesn't make a lot of sense, and she seems like a considerate person. Anyway, I would just think that the resident noise experts (crochety neighbors) would take it up with her, but I don't know if they have. Maybe they've stopped caring now that they have a crying baby and they are tired walking zombies. Fortunately, screaming evil toddler usually just has tantrums during the day and sleeps at night, so his screaming doesn't wake me up either. :-) So again, not a big deal. But just a weird fact of life.

I do feel like I might have a noisy baby. The singing pipes are generally genetic, and I have a pretty stentorian loud voice. I could see my baby being a very noisy wailer, unlike the nice below neighbors' baby who is the quietest crier in the universe! So our neighbors might still be driven insane, but again, they are supposedly moving. So it's just funny how everything is going to work out for the best! It's hilarious!

The end. :-)
Unless they aren't moving after all. :-(

Monday, May 3, 2010

Visiting Krista in October

Haha, she didn't know I was pregnant. (Or she didn't say anything if she figured it out.) Well I was kinda sneaky. I knew I wasn't going to see my fam until Thanksgiving, which was about 12 weeks along for me anyway. Finishing the first trimester is a good time to start announcing, in case a spontaneous abortion happens.

And I didn't want to tell people until my family knew, so that's how it all kinda worked out. We did tell Adam's family at a dinner a few weeks earlier than Thanksgiving, but still, I wanted my family to hear from us in person that I was pregnant and not leaked from facebook or something. So I kept it from my friends and coworkers. My coworkers were especially shocked. Fortunately I only threw up a few times at work, and while I was already in the bathroom, so they didn't have to see me spew or anything.

But I miserably digress. Onto the photos!

Adam and I visited Krista, her husband Brad, and their cute little girl Abigail! We had a lot of fun, and we went to Churchhill Downs, where the running of the Kentucky Derby happens! And we just watched that recently on tv! Way to go, Super Saver!

Churchhill Downs with the Christensens!

The Stables!

One cute bunch!

The race track!

This and That

Pictures that I want to share:

Graduation from Drexel U, Philadelphia, June 2009. I got my master's in the science of instruction, essentially a master's in education. I am certified in MO and PA to teach high school physics, chemistry, and math. Good times!

I love China Towns! Chinatown in Philly, which we happened upon serendipitously while walking back from graduation to our B&B.

We also walked by the spot where Ben Franklin performed his famous kite experiment during the lightning storm! Adam is pointing out the plaque marking the spot, and now it's where a church stands.

Aw, my parents are cute. Walking to Whole Foods, the one criterion that our hotel/B&B needed to be close to. ;-)

Work, Campaign, Etc

My job ended just two weeks ago, but I worked there for seven months. The ladies I worked with were excellent and I had a lot of fun. They were also very sweet and had a little going away party for me, and also got me a fabulous baby gift, a JOGGING STROLLER! Talk about fantastic!!! And very kind. I know that jogging strollers aren't cheap, and I know that they aren't very rich. It was very kind and I really appreciate it. I will miss them. I cannot forget to send them pics of the baby when she is born!

Getting to my job. More stairs! And I live up three flights of stairs! Stairs stairs stairs! I didn't really bother to exercise during pregnancy because I figured I was getting enough exercise just getting from point A to B and carrying groceries up the stairs. (I didn't want to cause problems or anything by overdoing it, and I hope I found a good balance. I gained the average amount of weight, and fortunately during my first trimester I just craved salads and cereal and steered clear of all sweets because they'd give me a throbbing headache -- didn't need to learn that lesson twice!)

Okay, the bucket at the stairs cracks me up. Ghetto, I know. When the A/C is on at work, there is a big drip that makes a puddle at the bottom of the stairs that the forklift guys have to drive through -- so they just put a bucket there. Problem solved!

A view of a small part of the warehouse from the top of the stairs. There are four large warehouses and a two-story administrative building at Virbac Animal Health - it's a pretty big company, and an international distributor of animal health products and medications.

Proud to be an American. About to enter the office! Oh, I love it, my pregnant belly made a cameo in this picture!!! hahaha! My arms aren't as long as I thought when I was taking this one.

My "office." Okay, not anymore, but it was good times. I remember the first month I used to get a little distracted and stare at Florida on the map, planning trips I may never take. Hello Pensacola! And the Florida Keys! And Cape Canaveral! One day my boss caught me, I think it was the first week, and she said something, I can't remember what. I tried not to look at the map when she was around. But it always got tempting around 4:15pm when I was about to get off work and logging off.

Darcy's Office! Bonjour, Darcy, representative to the French Canadians!

All my sweet coworkers! And the jogging stroller that they gave me! They also brought lots of good food from Costco! (Thanks Sarah!)

Eek! A rat! Actually, it's a squeaky toy! We sell rat bait at Virbac, and this was a little promotional item of sorts. It was like our mascot. Squeak squeak! (I did enjoy squeaking those rats, we had about six of them?)

Heehee, I drew that doggie. Woof woof! We make and sell dog shampoo, dog toothbrushes, dog meds, etc.

This fan saved my life when it started getting hot the last few weeks. Ahhhhh, I would set it right in front of my face on my desk.

Changing Gears - Onto the S ch weich campaign. (I have to spell it like that because there are spies everywhere in the opposition - and google is so quick to link to pages, believe it or not.) Our friends Amy and Elliott helped out at this fundraiser, motivated by good food! Woot! We also got autographed copies of Mitt Rom ney's book.

The life of a volunteer - Adam furiously getting the name tags ready for check-in, registration starts in a half-hour!

I got to check people in at registration, a perfect job for a pregnant lady in her third trimester. One awful pic of me, but this kid was the other half of our team and he was very helpful. Also, we had Mitt's badge at our station!

It's Mitt! Endorsing Tom S c h w iech for state auditor! Woot!

Mmm, good food, free for volunteers! Yummy salad:

The main course was, eh, okay. Still, it was nice not having to cook. Of course, I've been super-cooking lazy since I've been pregnant. Or maybe I was always cooking lazy, you'll have to get Adam's opinion there.

The dessert was super-excellent! Adam and I were huge fans!

Mitt Mitt Mitt!!!

Elliott, you did a great job putting up those flags!

That's all for now!

Getting New Pics Up - I am so severely proud of myself ;-)

Haha, this is going to be hilarious.

Adam saves my bacon, because I have this Canon camera, which *thinks* that it needs proprietary software. And I also thought that that was the requirement. So I would try to open my camera to the pics, which used to work very well with the software. But then the software stopped working if the printer was on. So I'd turn off the printer. Okay, working again. But then recently, it wouldn't work if I had opened itunes. So I'd have to reboot and try again. That helped. But then only a month ago, it wouldn't open the software, period. Even if it was the only program I was trying to run, after a fresh reboot. The USB cable was fine, we checked it out. Anyway, it just stinks burning up an hour of your life trying to trouble-shoot why you can't get your darn pictures off your freakin' camera. And then it leaves you zero time to post and comment said photos.

Adam found out that I can go right to the camera memory through My Computer and get the pics that way. That was how my Sony Powershot used to work, and I loved it. No proprietary messes. Anyway, I could have *sworn* that I tried that with my Canon and it gave me an error, so I never tried it again. Well, silly me. And smart smart Adam. :-) I love it when the solution is easy, but I never tried it.

Okay, long story short, it takes me just a few minutes to get my pics off instead of hours and hours of laborious trouble-shooting and head-scratching. And then you start to dread trying, and put it off for months and months.

So, without further ado, won't you please enjoy some pics from the last, let's say, year?!? Some old ultrasound pics? Some newer pregnancy pics?? Although sometime soon I should have some great baby photos to post! Yippee!

oldest to newest:

It's a sweet little baby with the hiccups! 10 weeks! (from October)

It's a picture of the baby at 20 weeks! (from December)

It's a picture of pregnant me at 29 weeks! (from February)

Pictures from my baby shower, back in March:

Me, Careen, and sister-in-law Sarah, with my cute little niece Bronwyn, at the baby shower:

Playing an awesome game!


How are you enjoying my pregnancy in fast-forward? It's almost like instant gratification!

Here's me now (actually taken tonight), pictures at 38 weeks, 2 left! (Unless I'm like many of the Brown kids and go an extra week, highly probable.)

Okay, so far my fav pic of being pregnant! Popping my heel in my fun red-orange shoes (that I got at Walmart for $4.00, and they are perfect pregnancy shoes, slip on and off, and with good arch support.)

I did it! Huzzah! I do hope to take some pics of the nursery, although there isn't much to see, just a crib, no new paint job or anything. And then I hope to post them! Maybe it will happen!

I do hope to post some other fun pics tonight. Pictures of where I used to work, and also at another campaigning event that we volunteered at. Mitt Romney came to endorse Tom S ch weich! Hooray! And we got a pic with Mitt! I hope it turned out well. It was taken by a professional photog. But that means we have to wait to get it. :-( Boohoo.

Love ya!