Growing, Learning, and Enjoying Every Part Of It.

Wednesday, July 31, 2013

This, That, And The Other

I’m addicted to soup. I think both babies must love it. I have always liked soup, but I’m in love with it right now. I think about it every day. Is that weird? Oh well. I’m thinking about having a soup cooking week. I will make lentil soup – I’ve mastered the recipe from carraba’s. It is the absolute best lentil soup. I think I even make it better than they do now.  I also want to make bake potato soup. A few years ago when Alyssa and I were doing that cooking challenge, I made homemade soup for the first time…it was baked potato and from that point on I haven’t purchased another canned soup. I also want to find and make the recipe for Olive Garden’s Zuppa Tuscana. OMG…I have been eating that at least 3 times a week for the past two months. I’m such a junkie.  I know I can make this myself…I just know it.  I also want to try my hand at a really hearty vegetable soup. Then I’m going to scour the net looking for other interesting recipies.  The thing is that Mr. RFA doesn’t consider soup to be “real food.”  He sees it as an appetizer. So I’m going to have to cook “real” food for him.
 
My mother is moving back to Florida to live with my granny.  Within the last month I’ve written and deleted at least 3 posts about the relationship between my mother and me. It emotionally and mentally drains me to think about it all. I give up somewhere in the middle and try to focus on other things. In a nutshell, it has been bad. I’ve felt like a punching bag and she feels abandoned. I’m frustrated and she is sad. I know something deeper than us is going on, but I’m allowing my frustration and immaturity in this area to hold me hostage where I am. I’m going to try to write about it again…in a month.
 
One of my favorite blogs and daily reads is the Happiness Project Blog. A while back in early June or May  she posted this quote, “There is an Indian proverb or axiom that says that everyone is a house with four rooms, a physical, a mental, an emotional and a spiritual. Most of us tend to live in one room most of the time but, unless we go into every room every day, even if only to keep it aired, we are not a complete person.” –Rumer Godden
Then she asked her readers in which room do they spend most of their time. The answer came right to me. Most of my time is spent on mental with emotional be a close second. This has been the trend for a few months now. Prior to that it was physical and spiritual, especially during our trying to conceive times. I think, like most people, my attention to each ebbs and flows. I want to give them all the necessary attention they need understanding that equality is not realistic or necessary to be whole. I do need to at least make sure I go into each room every day, though. This is going to be my self-imposed challenge for the next 30 days.
 
We closed on the sale of our house on Tuesday. Shockingly, I wasn’t sad about it. I’m excited about new beginnings. We are currently living in one of the apartments we own and will do so until we close on the purchase of the new house at the end of next month. This moving out of the house and moving into the apartment has made everyone’s stress levels rise. My husband yelled at me yesterday and I cried like a little baby. He has only yelled around me, never at me, one other time and that was because some crazy road rager started following us. Alyssa is stressed because now she has to wake up extra early to make it to vball camp for the next two weeks as it is an hour away from where we are temporarily living. Not to mention her friends being so far away. I’m stressed because it’s budget time at work, I get home late or super late every night, I haven’t been much of a wife or mother the past few weeks, and I’m ready to be back in comfortable surroundings. My husband is stressed because he’s had to play Mister Mom/Mrs. Wife and handle pretty much all of the details of the sale of both properties and the purchase of the new one with little to no help from me. The three of us have talked about all of the changes happening as a group and individually. We all know that we are on edge more than we should be, but when it comes down to it, no one is cutting the others any slack and attitudes are all around. 
 
I’ll end on a happier note…I found out that one of the girls I used to work with is also pregnant. She got married a year before me and we used to talk about wanting to have children and our struggles.  I’m so happy she gets to experience motherhood!

 

Monday, July 29, 2013

Baby Bump News - Week 17

I haven’t given baby bump news in a while. Well, there is definitely a visible bump now, though it’s not huge. It looks more fat than bumpish, but it’s there. My honey loves touching it with both hands and saying yay, lol. I remember when we first met; he was amazed at how and how much I said the word yay. Now he does the very same thing. The expression of joy is quite contagious.

Anyhow, today marks 17 weeks. We had our last doctor’s visit on Friday and both babies were progressing right on target. Baby A was asleep when we started the ultrasound (I call her the girl). She was just laying there looking so peaceful. Her heartbeat was 147 bpm and she is weighing in at 5 ounces. We focused on her for a while, looking at her cute feet, head, spine, etc. Next, we moved on to Baby B (I call him the boy). He was fully awake and in full on play mode. He was moving all around. I still can’t believe they wiggle and jiggle that much and we can actually see it on the ultrasound. He was a ball of energy. He made me laugh.  His heart beat was 154 bpm and he weighs 6 ounces.  I was assured the difference in weight was nothing to be alarmed about. That it seems significant now, but once they get into the pounds, an ounce or a few won’t be a big deal. 

When the tech first started moving the wand around my belly, she asked if we were excited to find out the genders. We both, in a panic, warned her that we didn't want to find out. I didn't think to say anything from the start because I thought it would be too early to tell. She spent about 10 full minutes trying to convince us to find out. After 30 seconds it was annoying. She went so far as to tell us that in all her years of doing this, she knows that not knowing the gender is not some great surprise…the great surprise, she says, is in seeing their face, fingers and toes. I wanted to slap her.

Lastly, she told us to hurry and look away. Apparently the babies didn't agree with us waiting either because Baby B kept his legs open and Baby A decided to wake up and join the fun…she spread her wide open too.  I looked away and my husband turned his whole body around.

After we finished the ultrasound and waited for the doctor, we picked apart everything she said trying to figure out if she gave away what we are having.  I immediately thought one of them must be a boy because she had a lot of urgency in her voice for us not to look at one  point. I figured she thought we’d be able to see something peaking at us, lol. 

This last doctor’s visit and our talking about gender revealed to me and my husband that he really wants a daughter. We both have wanted one of each, but he really, really wants a little girl. At one point he was afraid of having two twin daughters, but I think he would actually love that. He has thoughts of spoiling her to pieces and being her hero. It’s cute the way he talks about our little Baby A.

Time will tell if we have one, two or no baby girls.

My symptoms have calmed down for the most part. I am having some round ligament pain and back aching, but it’s not anything unbearable at this point. Thank God for a symptom reprieve!

I was driving last week and swore I felt something. I talked myself out of it because surely I thought it was too early to feel movement. Well, my doctor asked if I had felt anything, so I told her the story. She said that movements are usually felt earlier in second pregnancies and with multiples. She told me it would be sporadic to start and then in a month I’ll probably feel them all the time. Since then I have felt more sporadic movements…it’s so cool!

My doctor warned me that bed rest is common for a twin pregnancies, so she urged me to finish up my registry and choose everything I want for the nursery, so that if I can’t go shopping when the time comes, someone else would know exactly what to get. She also urged me to go ahead and do my hospital tours and pre-register. This all seems so early, but I’m following her orders.

Guess what else??  We have an official delivery date (unless the babies choose something earlier) – December 17, 2013!!


The funny thing is that I started my online registry weeks ago and I had to choose a due date…I chose the 17th. How cool is that. I’m excited that they will be here in time for Christmas, so our family will all be here for the holidays. 20 weeks and 1 day to go!!!

Monday, July 22, 2013

In Other House News...



We have found our next home! I love it! Early on, before our search started, I think I mentioned here that we both loved the older homes in our current city. The neighborhoods are charming with large trees and the houses have character as opposed to the abundance of new cookie cutter homes popping up everywhere now.  Then we changed our minds because we are worried about resale in 5 to 10 years – Will someone else want to buy an even older home by that point?

Well, in the end our initial desires won the day. We didn’t do it on purpose, but we are drawn to what we like. Alyssa and Mr. RFA went out last Wednesday and looked at 11 houses. By the time I got off from work, they had their top 3, so the realtor took us all back out to see them. I hated the first one. The only great feature was that the backyard was backed up on a greenbelt.

The second house made me literally scream with joy. I loved it. It was in a gated community, had an awesome kitchen, a separate office, both formals, and nice sized secondary rooms. The game room was tiny, which took some wind from my sails. As I was overjoyed, Alyssa and Mr. RFA didn’t look extremely impressed. I thought they were either trying to psych me out or the third house must have been spectacular.

We got to the third house, which is literally around the corner from the second house in another neighborhood.  Just driving through the neighborhood made me feel warm and fuzzy.  I loved how all the other houses looked and the beautiful trees, lakes and landscaping. When we got to the house it was on a corner lot at the start of a culdesac with a swing driveway. I was in love. We walked in and the staircase in all its spiral glory took my breath away. I was bounced back down for a second as I noticed the tiled floor entry – I hated that. Both formals and the living room had hardwoods, though and that made me happy. The entry way was two stories and really welcomed us into the space. As I walked into the kitchen, I loved the cabinets, but hated the white appliances. And there is a butler’s pantry…that made me so happy.
Walking through the back of the downstairs there was a bathroom and the office. The office has beautiful hardwoods as well. Before going upstairs we walked to the back yard, which has a deck and is very quaint, just the way we both wanted it. We aren’t one of those families that needs or wants a big yard…just enough space is good for us.

Walking up the stairs was great. It was so spacious up there. The game room is huge (just what I wanted). There is a guest bedroom on one side of the upstairs by itself with a common area bathroom.
On the other side of the upstairs is the Master, which has double doors to enter…ahhh…I was like a giddy school girl. I kept opening and closing them, lol. The master is very big with a balcony (swoon).  And that master bath and closet is crazy. They are almost too big, but I know we’ll use all of the space.
Just when I thought the upstairs was stopping, there was a long hallway. We made it to another bedroom which was being used as a nursery. It was a great size, but not too big. My favorite thing about it was the jack and jill bathroom that connected it with the other bedroom. I’ve always loved the jack and jill bathrooms. That’s when we came to a big bedroom. It has its own little hallway as well. At that point, Alyssa just beamed with happiness. All she wants is a big room.

I couldn’t believe how spacious the house was. Nothing was cramped, there was plenty of storage spaces and closets, and there is definitely enough space for 5 people and a dog.

Mr. RFA and Alyssa kept asking if I liked it better than house two because they were in love with it. They both just couldn’t contain their smiles. House two is a great house, but overall the additional space from house three, the neighborhood, the gameroom, the master, the size of the secondary bedrooms, and most of all the looks on my loves’ faces confirmed that house three was the right house for our family.

We were ready to make an offer right there. The blessing is that we were willing and thought we would have to spend a certain budget to get what we wanted, but just a week before we saw the house, the sellers dropped the price $19,900. We went in asking for another $5k less and they accepted. We looked at comps in the neighborhood and had the sellers been more patient they could have definitely got their original list price before their decrease. The other houses for sale in the neighborhood that don’t even look as great as that home are selling for much higher. Our realtor told us the sellers were on a timeline and needed to move fast. And, when they bought the house a few years ago, the market was much lower, so they were making a great profit anyway. It is working out in everyone's favor.

Our closing is in a month!  Since last Wednesday, we have driven past the house several times just to admire it and make sure the neighborhood is awesome at all times of the day. We went into this thinking we’d be there for the next 5 or so years and then sell, but the more I look at the house online the more I believe it’s going to be a very long term house for us. It’s one that we can put our mark on and make some wonderful memories in. I told Mr. RFA that last night and he said he was thinking the same thing. 

Today is inspection day, so we are praying all goes well and there are no problems!

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Sold!



We’ve sold the house..yippie! Have you ever sold a house? This was both our first time experiencing the selling process and neither of us particularly liked it.  There was a lot of packing up and leaving the house for an hour…several times per day.  We got tons of feedback, none of which was valuable. People said things like, “House shows well;” “Don’t like that Master is upstairs;” etc. There was no feedback on anything we could actually change. We both started to feel discouraged and thought maybe God just wanted us to stay there. One afternoon I texted Mr. RFA and told him that we need to take it off the market. Later that day we got a cash offer for $4k below our asking price. We negotiated some typical seller costs, and came to an agreement. They want to close quickly…as in the end of this month. 

We are now frantically looking for a new house. We had stopped looking because we wanted to wait for an offer. Neither of us had a clue we would get a cash offer and the buyer would want to close within a month. Alyssa and Mr. RFA are going to see 11 houses today and we all saw one on Monday. I like the one from Monday a lot, except for one issue…there is no separate study and only 4 bedrooms. But the rest of the house is great. Depending on what they love today, this evening all three of us will go back and see the top picks.  I really hope we are able to make a choice by the end of the weekend, and hopefully we can get a fast closing.

In other news, we also sold the apartments here in Texas. We had to do a praise dance when we heard there was an offer. Those apartments make me sick…I hate them. Since Mr. RFA have been together, there has always been at least one unit vacant, meaning we had to pay the difference in mortgage. Dealing with tenants is a headache for my husband, which makes me feel bad for him. We had concluded that we would have to deal with that “problem” for years to come. By chance we just decided to put it on the market to see if there would be any interest at all. We had absolutely no positive expectations, but God showed up and showed out again. We close on that sale in the middle of August. It is grand to have these things fall into place.

I’m now trying to convince my husband that we need to go ahead and sell the out of state rental property now and not wait until next spring. He is not budging. I just want us to strike while the market is hot. I think he is emotionally attached because that was his first home. I’m being sensitive to that.

I feel like God is blessing us in ways we only imagined. Sometimes I feel undeserving, but I know this is all happening for a reason and I appreciate God’s favor in our lives.
Now that we can focus on our first “Together Home” we are steps closer to getting ready for the babies and start of our new expanded family!

Monday, July 1, 2013

Baby Bump News - 13 Weeks

We got to see the babies again last week. I am going to love having an ultrasound at every visit. I didn't get that with Alyssa. I only had two. Shame. 

This time they were able to do the ultrasound from my belly..Thank the Lord for no more vaginal ones. We could immediately see them this time, too. There was no foggy images. They have grown so much and look so much like little babies and less like round blobs. 

The best part was that they were moving. Yes, MOVING. They were wiggling all around, I just couldn't believe it. Of course it is too early to feel them, but they are in there as active as they can be. We let Alyssa come in this time and she couldn't believe how much they were moving either.  I told the babies to play nicely and not push and shove in there. 

My doctor told me that the little pouch I've formed is from the babies. I thought it was just fat, so win for me! lol. I've lost about 8 pounds thanks to morning, afternoon, nighttime and in between time sickness. When will it stop??  I've had two more vomitting while driving episodes...yuck, yuck, and more yuck.

I'm not complaining, though. As much as I want the sickness to subside, I can't get upset about it because...We're having some BABIES!! I still get excited thinking about it.

Mr. RFA is super excited, too. I fall more in love with him when he does baby things on his own and tells me about it. For example, he looks at videos online about how babies grow at my stage of pregnancy. He'll look up my symptoms and tell me when they should subside and let me know he kind of understands what I'm going through. This past week, he had to go away for business a couple of days. I got a text from him of the cutest little girls dress. He decided he was going to go shopping and buy the babies 6 month outfits. He bought a cute dress for a girl and a cute little jumper for a boy. He was so giddy that I almost cried.

In our minds we are having a son and a daughter. We have absolutely no idea if that will be the case, but we both have that feeling. Or maybe it's a desire. I'm still going to move forward with gender neutral decor for their room and any baby essentials I purchase. 

Pregnancy Stats:

  • Today I am 13 weeks on the dot. Only about 23 weeks to go!
  • I've lost 8 lbs since the day we got the positive pregnancy test
  • I'm not super sensitive like I was when I was pregnant 15 years ago
  • My symptoms include: morning sickness, fatigue, headaches, and crankiness

That's it for this edition of Baby Bump News!