Thursday, January 19, 2012

29 weeks.

best attempt at taking my own pic today...
How Far Along:  29 weeks, 1 day
Size of baby:  She is the size of a butternut squash and may weigh around 2 1/2 lbs.
Gender: IT'S A GIRL!!! We HAVE a name.  It wasn't mine and it wasn't his but it's HERS! I call her this now and I know it fits her.. our genre... and our little family.  She will also have a middle family name straight from my family.  That part of the name is really special to me.  It's official enough that I made her a hair bow holder with the first letter.  I'd tell the world BUT Ryan has my lips sealed.  ugh.    
Maternity Clothes:  I wear some bigger normal clothes but everything else is all maternity! 
Weight gain:  19 lbs.  Let's be honest, I'm not thrilled to keep typing this BUT let's face it.. I have (or am)  a growing girl.  Seriously, the appetite has been ridiculous.  Whoa.  Homegirl needs to feast on what's already there! ;)  Thankfully my mad hunger from last week is leveling out this week. 
Belly Button: in.
Movement: lots of movement.  I am so grateful for her moves and shakes.
Sleep:  great for the meantime minus a couple Charlie horses.  About a year ago we bought a new mattress and I feel so much more comfortable when I wake up in the morning compared to when I was pregnant with Titus.  
Symptoms: I feel pretty good minus some heartburn.  I don't feel like my normal self but chasing a toddler all day really helps me to feel active and good despite my huge belly.  When I was pregnant with Titus I was at a desk all day and wow, I was so uncomfortable.  A couple weeks ago, I spent a good bit of time making felt bows and sitting at a table.  It reminded me of how I felt when pregnant with T!  Stay moving pregnant ladies, it feels so much better!!   I have braxton hicks and sometimes more pressure than I remember with Titus.  I asked about this and my dr said this is perfectly normal and increases with each pregnancy.  
Cravings:  Since going to sweets 1 day a week, I've wanted sweets more!!! I never really thought much about the fact that I live 2 minutes from my fav ice cream shop until recently.  Now, I have to "be strong" every time I leave the house, but so far, no cheating.   However, my love for chicken wings has followed me the entire time! My husband made a late night run for my sis and I last week while she was visiting (this was only the 2nd time he has done this for wings).   Hot wings and a movie was a good combo even if I did feel like a Mcfatty!  BTW.. Logan's Roadhouse has the BEST wings EVER!   
Best Moment of the Week:  I had my glucose test this past week and I'm in the clear (yes, I waited until the last possible day). She is also measuring right on track which makes this mama thankful.  I love her kicks, but heavens she is def not as wild as her brother was.  I had a lot of fun making bows for her.  She may not have any hair, but I have that covered too!  Necessary, no?  Fun, YES!!!!!

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

if I don't write it down... 34 months

I can hardly believe MY baby is almost 3 years old.  Seriously, time flies.

We are full on into imagination land.  The boy dresses up 24/7 and just informed me he needs some indian gear and a new pair of cowboy boots.  Lucky for him, a homemade teepee is in the works, thanks to Pinterest and my husband's mad skills.  I think it will be a cute addition to his cowboy/indian room.

He can talk the horns off a billy goat.  I hear, "Hey mom....." at least 1,000 times a day.  Along with using all his and my words each day, the boy remembers EVERYTHING.  I love that his mind is so active.  At least on a weekly basis he asks me if I remember when he was running around while eating and threw up in my hand (YES I remember).  This was like 5 months ago!  We were both scarred.

We are trying to move him to his big boy bed (aka Woody/Buzz bed).  It's only Woody/Buzz because of the sheets.  He SO wants to be a big boy but gets a little scared and begs for his crib.   Thanks to his fav Bible story, he is scared of giants.  And monsters.  We pray and talk about how Jesus protects us and is with us, but I can't blame him.  I'm scared of the giants too.  We tried some "monster spray" but I think that made it more real for him.  Parent of the year, right here.

As much as he wants to be a big boy, I can tell his little mind is trying to figure out this baby sister thing. He has wanted me to hold him like a baby and do more baby things lately.  I know he loves her and will love her.. but learning to share his parents might be a process.  I see some Mommy dates in the future after she comes to help him know he is still just as loved.  I'm sure I'll have a good cry over that at some point!

But the sweetest conversation to date goes something like this....

Titus:  Hey Mom, Can I get a bracelet for my birthday?

Me:  Why do you want a bracelet?

Titus:  Because I married to you.

Me:  But, remember I'm married to Daddy.

Titus:  No, I married to you next time.

Me:  Ok, buddy..  I'm honored  ;)

(Ryan later told me he was asking him about his wedding band yesterday.. ah ha)

Any tips for getting this child into a normal bed!?  Seriously, he just sleeps so stinkin' good in that crib!  Is there hope he'll still take naps and sleep well in a bed?

Friday, January 13, 2012

Ft. Bragg Life

I'm linking with Kelly for military families today!  This is my little family of 3.. soon to be 4 with a baby girl coming the beginning for April.

Although my husband (Ryan) has been in the Army for coming up on 9 years in April, I feel like our Army life is just getting started with his entry into full-time Army work.  Ryan is in the Army Reserves, yet works full-time for his unit.  This puts him in the active duty category... they call it AGR.

When he took this job we moved 3000 miles back to the East coast from Portland, OR.  We are so thrilled to see the sun and enjoy more seasons!  We have currently been here around 4 months and are continuing to settle.  We will be living a little ways from base and go to church an awesome church in Cary.  This has probably made it a little more hard for me to meet other moms.  Ryan is currently about to enter his senior year of seminary at Western Seminary (although we aren't a year away from being done).  While we don't feel God's calling to the chaplaincy right now, we know he has a plan and a purpose for this schooling and are excited how he will continue to use it in our lives.  

Ryan was deployed before we got married to Iraq.  While he hasn't gone again in a while, we know that is part of the deal and pray God will give us the grace we need for that season.  My heart goes out to the families here that are currently dealing with deployments.  It brings me to tears when I think about all the LIFE that happens in this small town.  I am always so impressed with the strength I see in  soldiers, husbands, wives, and children when duty calls.  We have been so blessed by some of the humble soldiers we have met here who show so much courage when facing war.  

While I never really pictured myself as an Army wife (and can't say I LOVE everything about Army life), I know this is part of God's plan and watching my husband thrive in that is such a blessing to us all.  I have always been grateful for our country and the people who serve, but seeing firsthand the sacrifices given takes things to a new level for me.  It is such an honor for me to teach my little boy about brave men and women right near our doorstep.  

Thank you to each of the families out there who sacrifice so much.  I pray God will remind you today that you aren't forgotten whether in country on changing diapers.  He is using you and your family to shape history!!

Sunday, January 8, 2012

sweet sunday

One our New Years goals, resolutions, or whatever you want to call it is to only eat sweets on Sunday.  This means no sweets cross our lips the rest of the week.  Oh and it's a good one on Sunday too!!  Although I would probably choose a savory dip over sweets this pregnancy, I did have a dream about desserts this week so that does tell you something.  Here's to my prayers to finish the last 12 weeks of pregnancy without hoping my child weighs 15 lbs at birth so I can lose the weight faster!

Here's one thing we've been learning and dialoging about these days (I step onto my soap box).. 

I think life is about balance (except when it comes to loving Jesus with our whole heart).  We all want magical formulas.  

 There is no magical formula to a healthy lifestyle.  If you diet crazy or skip meals, you kill your metabolism.  If you don't exercise, you have cellulite.  If you over-exercise, you burn yourself out.  

For me, it goes further than just eating.  If I want to be close to God, I spend time in his word and pray.  If I want long-standing authentic relationships, I become a giver and a blessing to others (life lesson #1002).  No magic there, but daily submission to dying to self and letting go of selfishness and entitlement.  Yes, I could write a book on the "victim" mentality and how it effects every part of our lives from friendships to money.   

Anyways.  Although we have a long way to go on all accounts, our sweets on Sunday is an attempt to add a little more balance into the Epp household.  I love the freshness a new year offers.   

Let's just say the buster brown ice cream dessert is treating us well today!

Friday, January 6, 2012

some new favorite things.. budget style

It's January.  I actually love the freshness of January.  After Christmas, January always offers a chance to get back on our strict budget (just in time for seminary tuition..ugh).  I have a love/hate relationship with this strict budget concept! :)  Since I never got around to some of my fav things like my friend, Oprah (actually I'm not exactly a huge fan anymore) I figured I'd share some of my favorite friendly things!

Homemade laundry detergent.  I made this 4 months ago and we have barely used 1/4 of what was made.  I spent around $40 total on the supplies (including the glass containers) and I am guessing this will last us over a year.  That's $3.33 a month AND I use a little more than directed on the tutorial.  The best part is that it really does work well.  Of course, I'm a fabric softener junkie so I do add that to the washer along with it.  

Scentsy.  I love love love it.  I have recently bought jut the cheaper warmers from Wal-Mart and added the Scentsy wax.  I'm still testing it to make sure it gets just as warm, but so far so good!  I like to buy a new wax bar each season and for $5, it's worth it and makes me feel like I have "safe candles" burning all day!  Nothing extravagant but a little pleasure I enjoy!

Sharpie Pens.  I received one of these as a little surprise at Christmas.  Such a thoughtful gift in the simple things and I LOVE it.  Seriously, it's the best pen and makes I look forward to writing my lists with it.  Yes, I am a type A-er and I fully embrace it. :)  

Ion Titanium Platinum Straightener.  On a trip flying to Charleston, my CHI died.  It served me well for over 3 years, but it was dead and I was sad.  I was also sad because I knew another wasn't quite in the budget.  My mom let me try her straightener out and I was shocked to see this worked so well.. maybe even better than my CHI and it was over half the price!

 Israeli Couscous.  One of our goals for the New Year is to eat less meat.  This comes from a desire to eat healthier and since we can't always afford the meat we want to eat, eating less makes perfect sense!  I was introduced to this over Christmas and it was so so good.  You can cook it with lots of sneaky veggies and laugh like a desperate housewife as your child eats "pasta balls like superman."   A 6 lb. bag will run you around $6.99 at Costco.   It makes a gracious plenty so my husband was happy when I said, "eat as much as you want!"  We made it a full meal including the veggies and some bread and hummus on the side.  The hummus was a great source of protein (and iron) so this acted as more of a meat replacement.

Have you found any budget friendly favs to add to the list?!  I'm all ears! :)