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Thursday, July 21, 2011

Live and learn.

Can you remember a time in your life when you were really, really happy with your body? I can't. Wait, lemme think ... OK, yeah, nope, still nothing.

So when I'm perusing through old pictures and come across pictures like this one ...

and this one....

... I can't help but want to reach out and shake this girl. REALLY? You thought you were fat?! That body was healthy. Not the skinniest I'd ever been ... still some meat on my bones. But HEALTHY. And beautiful. I'd KILL for that body right now. Hell, I'd kill for that body plus 15 pounds right now!

This isn't me hating on my current body. Clearly, I'm going to be at my heaviest weight ever when I'm carrying around 2 extra people inside my belly. And it's not me hating on my body before I got pregnant. Working nights, aging, a previous pregnancy, and motherhood have changed it over the years. When you're carrying around an extra 40 pounds of baby and stuff, you find yourself longing for your former body, which you thought was gross. And not even the old old one. I'm just anxious to have the old one back so I can work on getting back to the old old one. Or somewhat close. I've accepted that and will strive to get healthier after I have these boys, not for vanity sake, but for my emotional and physical health. I want to be a fit, healthy mom for my boys. But still, that's not what this post is about.

It's about perspective. I wish I'd had the perspective years ago to look at myself and my body with pride. I wish I would've felt comfortable in my own skin. I want to tell that girl from years ago to enjoy herself the way she is. Because life catches up to you too quickly to dwell on things like appearance. Focus on health and the other things will fall into place.

Oh, and P.S. Sister, he loves you for you, not for what you look like. Because otherwise, he wouldn't build a wonderful life with you and bring 3 beautiful boys into the world with you. So just date him already.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

I've got friends in low places.

Low as in Florida. But the whiskey sure isn't drowning, nor is the beer chasing my blues away. But oh, do I wish it was. I'm dying for a beer. Anyways, I digress.

When you live in the same town for your entire life, you tend to keep the same friends around. Sure, friendships ebb and flow. Once in high school, I stopped hanging out with my friends from grade school. They liked to drink and I was too afraid of my parents busy studying. But I quickly made new friends, many of whom I'm still very close with today. One of those girls became my roommate in college and together we made even more fabulous friends.

When you're in a school environment, you're almost forced to make friends. Everyone else is in the same boat as you. But moving to a brand new city, in a brand new state you don't usually have that luxury. Luckily, I had a group of "ready-made friends" waiting for me. The wives and girl friends of Brian's coworkers are wonderful women who welcomed me with open arms. Several of us have had/will have babies in 2011, so we have mommyhood in common. But sometimes I find myself a bit sad for Brennan because he doesn't have anyone his age to play with.

Since I found out I was pregnant the minute we moved here and very quickly started wretching my brains out all day long, and subsequently had a super-crazy-fast moving pregnancy thanks to the fact that I'm growing not one, but two munchkins, Brennan and I haven't explored as much as I'd hoped. So finding friends has been difficult.

But, I have managed to have some success. I met one mom of a 2 year old little girl through a craigslist deal (I know, it sounds sketchy, but she's very normal). Despite several attempts, we just haven't been able to make a play date happen. Then I met another mom expecting twins during our birth suite tour. She spotted us eating dinner at a local restaurant and came over to swap contact info so we could have a playdate in the future. That CLEARLY hasn't happened as we're both HUGE pregnant and have other children to run around after. The thought of that playdate just makes me tired. We also met a 3 year old boy and his mom in our Mommy-and-Me swim classes. Although there's a bit of an age difference between our boys, she and I hit it off quickly after learning that we're both recent "transplants" from the midwest. Again, contact info swapped, no playdate yet.

I think it's just because I'm tired. And the fact that it's physically painful for me to be running around too much. If I was full term with a singleton, I'd say bring on the pain, bring on the labor, but I have to get a few more weeks out of these boys, so I avoid the exertion at all costs. I'm hoping that someday when I call one of these ladies and ask if they'd like to come over for a playdate, that they don't think I'm weird and lame for getting around to it months later. But they all seem very cool and understanding. So while I feel like I've been fairly successful in making friends outside of the company-circle, I have yet to turn them into actual friendships. At least it's progress!

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Hi Michigan, Bye Michigan

**Warning ... way too many pictures ahead!**

We had quite a whirlwind trip back to the mitten last weekend. After booking our tickets months ago, we went back and forth for FOREVER trying to figure out how to see the people we wanted to see, accomplish what we wanted to accomplish, and keep things even between the two families. After awhile, we resigned ourselves to the fact that we'll never be able to see everyone we want to see, do everything we want to do, and keep things even ... especially in 4 days.

So, we broke it down as evenly as we could and stayed with Brian's family for the first three nights and mine for the last two. This made the most sense since Brian's sister and brother-in-law were going to arrive on Thursday night/Friday morning and my sister wouldn't be in town til Saturday night.

One thing that we were both pretty insistent on doing was taking Brennan to Ann Arbor. It's very near and dear to our hearts and we not only wanted to share it with our kiddo (yes, we realize he'll never remember it and that it was totally just for our benefit) but we also needed to stock up a bit on U of M gear. So Friday morning we packed up the kiddo and headed north. First things first, we stopped at hubby's old frat house. It burned down a few years back and they're still in the rebuilding process. While we lived in Michigan, he was on the alumni board and very involved, but hasn't seen the progress on the house since last fall. It was nice to see the rebuilding process as the house holds so many great memories for both of us, but especially Brian. After the visit to DU, we enjoyed some shopping, walked around the Diag a bit, and headed to Jerusalem Garden for lunch.

Daddy & Brennan in the Diag ... **Gag Alert** These benches are very special to us. It's where Brian first told me he loved me and where he proposed to me 5 years ago!
Playing on the "M" ... legend has it that if you step on the "M" you'll fail your first Blue Book exam. Sorry buddy, I think you screwed yourself.

Later that day, we picked up Brian's sister Jen and her hubby Brian (I know, weird right?) and headed to the Toledo Zoo. We hadn't been there in a few years, but both went frequently as kids, so it was nice to share it with Brennan. And Brian pushed me around in a wheelchair since I hit my walking quota that morning. FYI, wheelchair vinyl is extra hot when wearing jean shorts and you will feel like you peed your pants when out in 90 degree weather. Yuck.

Brian's parents both had to work on Friday, so after the zoo, we met them for dinner. Mexican food = yummy. Not being able to share the margarita pitcher = crappy.

Saturday morning Brennan and I went to visit my dear friend Jessica and her beautiful babies, including a fresh one I hadn't yet met. Brennan and her son Matthew played together next to each other, while I got to snuggle on her sweet little Makenzie. The visit was way too short, but it was fabulous to see them. We had to head back to my in-laws' house to help with party preparations. Brian's grandma will turn 99 in a few weeks and we had her birthday party while most of the grandkids were in town. It was awesome to see the family and eat cake.

Me & Gram ... yes, she's 99. Doesn't look a day over 80 does she? We've established that Brian will definitely out-live me. I'm OK with that.

Brennan & Aunt Jen ... notice the balloons? Jen & Brian blew up 99 red balloons for the party. That's how they roll.

Sunday we headed to mass with both of our families, then headed to my aunt's house for our annual 4th of July party. Brennan had so. much. fun. chasing bubbles, swinging on the swing, and driving the golf cart. He was sooooo happy that day.

On the swing with Aunt Trix & Grammy

Driving already?!

Monday was my very favorite day. We had a quick photo shoot with our favorite photographer (who happens to be my sister's best friend) to capture The Belly in all of it's glory. Brennan did not cooperate for any cute big brother/belly shots, but every time I think he was awful, she manages to get amazing shots. I have no doubt this time will be the same.

The rest of the day we did NOTHING. We relaxed in the pool at my parents' house and spent time with my family. Brennan loved every minute of pool time and learned to count down from three when Daddy threw him up in the air. TooIt made me miss living in Michigan, where we could do this every weekend if we wanted. My friend Janelle and her adorable mini-me joined us for a bit too. It's always a breath of fresh air to see great friends.

So much fun in the pool with Daddy

Tuesday morning we headed back to FL. We were lucky enough to be upgraded to first class on the way back ... I think the lady at the ticket counter felt sorry for the lady with the giant belly, a toddler, and her husband the pack mule. Whatever, I'll totally take sympathy if it allows me to enjoy a nice big seat!

We don't know when we'll make it back the mitten again, so it was nice to enjoy our time there while we could. The jury is still out on whether or not we'll be crazy enough to attempt a trip at Christmas-time with a 2-year-old and two 4-month-olds. We'll cross that bridge (or just jump off of it) when we get there!