Saturday, July 25, 2015

Back from Vacation / SHE'S NOT HERE YET

37 weeks and baby's still hangin' out in her little amniotic hot tub :-)

David was able to get some much-needed time off of work and take me on a nice little vacation to Sedona!  We had SUCH a nice time!  We got a really nice cabin for a very good price and also brought our own food for breakfasts / lunch to save money - making it possible for  us to go out for one nice meal each day we were there (3 days).   Sedona and Flagstaff are both very tourist-ey, so we spent most of our time just walking around the towns and checking out every little shop they had (and buying pretty much nothing lol).  However we turned out to be AVID samplers when it came to fudge shops and bakeries.  Lol gotta love those free samples....

We got (as usual) every kind of comment you can imagine from people on the street regarding my baby-belly.  After three days of it, David was like "NOW I see what you mean about getting so many comments!! It does get old!"

At the fudge shop, sampling fudge, I looked down and said "Rats, look at that, my belly just caught my crumbs."   To which a rather large older man replied, pointing at his big ole' belly, "Got the same problem here, sweetie..."

Passing a vendor advertising helicopter tours over the Grand Canyon, the sales-lady let us know that "babies LOVE helicopter rides!!!"  *wink wink*  yeah, no, we didn't fall for her sales pitch lol.

Getting an iced mocha at a coffee shop, the coffee lady working there, after exclaiming at how "cute" and "perfect" my bump was (WHY does it feel like neither, I'd like to know lol), said, "Now, you'll want a DECAFF of course, right?"  Nooooooo thank you.  This mama needs her caffeine please! *Official bad mom award for caffienating my un-born child*

Got told by another sweet lady that I "don't even look pregnant, just looks like you have a little beer belly going on."  A beer belly.  Oh thanks.

Literally every place we passed by, someone asked 1) when are you due (followed by look of shock), 2) is it a boy or a girl, 3) is this your first, 4) do you have a name (followed by a look of totally-not-impressed-with-THAT-name), 5) and are you excited (duh).

Perhaps I'm being too negative but when you get 20 comments a day like this it can really get old lol!
Ah, the joys of pregnancy :-)

Well at least I only have a few weeks left.  And then it shall begin:  a lifetime of being told by others what we are doing wrong as parents and "oh my gosh you aren't REALLY doing THAT are you?!" type of comments.

Here on the home-front however, things are going well and I'm just nesting away, getting last minute things organized, washed, and packed!!  It could be any time!!  My next projects to get done before Elenna gets here is to make and freeze mini pumpkin chocolate chip muffins, sync my ipod with a labor playlist, bleach the bathroom shower curtain liner, wash the windows and blinds, and re-organize the kitchen cabinets.   Oh, and probably one last really good pedicure :-)

Friday, July 17, 2015

36 weeks / Getting Ready

36 weeks!!!!  Phew.  Seriously I'm getting close.  It could TOTALLY be any day now.  It's so weird to wake up each day thinking, "today could be the day!!"  (And slightly disappointing going to bed each night thinking " I guess it wasn't...")

36 weeks
 We had a doctor appointment this week.....and we got to see our little girl on our LAST ULTRASOUND!!  Woo hoo!  They wanted to do this last one to check and see if my placenta had moved up or not (some of you may know I had marginal placenta previa).  And, praise God, it had.  Otherwise I would have been looking at a c-section for sure :-/  I am so happy though that now I can look forward to a (hopefully) normal and natural delivery!!

on our way to our last ultrasound!
The sonographer checked again to make sure Elenna hadn't turned into an Eduardo or something  - haha thankfully she is still a she!!  Good thing, since we've already had two VERY girly baby showers and have LOTS of pink :-)

It was super cute, too - during the ultrasound, as the tech was looking at her head, we saw her little lips start sucking and swallowing!!  It sounds dumb but it was SO adorable and made us laugh.  The tech then pointed out the the umbilical cord was draped across her face, maybe that's what was making her hungry lol.  We could also see her little tummy "breathing" in and out - the tech said that's a very good sign as it shows she is practicing her breathing already by swallowing amniotic fluid.

And most exciting of all - THIS GIRL HAS HAIR!!!!  It was so clear on the ultrasound, it was pretty much the first thing we saw was all this "floating" hair lol.  That's so awesome!!  I can't wait to put her in cute headbands and bows :-) Since she still has a few weeks left to go, she ought to have a nice little head of hair by time we get to see her :-)

Yesterday I started packing my hospital bag.  If she could come pretty much any time now, I kinda want to have the basics ready to go.  AND I want to have the house clean and organized too - I'm trying to have the kitchen spotless every night now (as opposed to leaving most everything in the sink and getting them the next morning - BAD wife, I know), having our bathroom super clean all the time, and staying mostly caught up on laundry.   Plus I'm in a state of constantly thinning out and asking myself "do I really need this"...... It's so easy to accumulate junk and things you don't need.

It has become inevitable to the point of almost feeling bad about it - EVERYONE who sees me out in public always asks "oooo, when is baby coming?" And when I tell them next month, the shocks spreads across their face, they do this finger-spin-thing meaning "turn to the side",  and then say with disbelief "Oh MY GOSH you're sooooo little!!  Is the baby OKAY!!!!????" 

Yes, the baby is fine!  I usually explain by telling them that 1) I eat really healthy and 2) I run alot. The grandma cashier at Fry's just about passed out the other day when I told her that.

"WHY on earth would you run?"
To which I told her that it's one of those last remaining things I feel like I can still "do", it makes me feel like "me", not "pregnant me".  To which she replied,
"Well I did alot of running when I was pregnant too - to the BATHROOM that is."
And....yes, I do plenty of that as well lol.

The Target cashier yesterday informed me that I looked just like one of their other pregnant employees, who apparently "looks like she swallowed an olive".  Why thank you, yes I do feel that way sometimes.

Another elderly lady cashier pushed her glasses down her nose and peered around her checkstand to get a closer look at my apparently non-existent baby bump. "Well bless your heart you don't got an ounce of fat on you. I hope she's ok." 

For the first time in my life though, I had ONE really sweet mom come up to me in the store and simply say, "Awww, you have the cutest baby bump! I love it!"  And that was it.  It was nice to hear. 

Elenna's going-home outfit!! (Unless I change it - again.  lol)
Seems like not a day goes by without someone telling me how small I am, asking if the baby is ok, am I eating enough, you need to stop running, etc.  It's frustrating sometimes because this is my first baby and I want to do everything right for her - I want her to be healthy and grow normally.  So I'm doing everything I can do make sure that happens.  But what people don't realize is that babies are not made out of ice cream, potato chips, soda, pudding, and other junk food!!!!  I feel like those kinds of calories are completely useless towards building a baby!  They won't go to her, they'll just make ME fat.   So I avoid those foods almost 100%.

Also, there is such a mis-understanding about the concept of "eating for two".   Your body only needs an additional 300 calories or so when you are pregnant.  That's NOT alot of extra food.  That would be like.....a bagel with cream cheese.  Or an extra chicken thigh at dinner.  Or two bananas and an apple.  Or a 1/4 cup of roasted peanuts with a thick slice of cheese.  It's not that much extra to be eating.  So the approach I've taken to eating while pregnant is to eat mostly whole foods, and eat just a little more than I normally would.

The doctor the other day mentioned my weight and, though she wasn't concerned about it, did suggest eating more snacks like nuts, seeds, meats, etc.  But everything is right on track growth-wise - she whipped out her little measuring tape to check fundal height and was like "yup, you're right exactly where you need to be!".  She said that baby must be just grabbing everything I eat because I'm ALL baby and no fat, which, she said she can't say for a lot of people.

As far as running, I've had many people tell me to stop.  My sister thinks Elenna will be born with a pre-existing six pack lol, and mom says the only way I'll get her to go to sleep after birth will be to get on the treadmill with her haha.   Many many people think I'm CRAZY to exercise while pregnant, and often tell me to stop.

But there is so much evidence out there to support moms exercising (yes, even running!) while pregnant.   I run because if mom gets cardio benefits, baby will too.  I run because if mom is in shape and strong, baby will be too.  I run because the more in shape I am now, the easier labor will be - and possibly faster too! I run because getting my post-baby-body back is important to me.

I run because I love it, I truly do.  It is the one thing left that I feel I can still do really well being pregnant, and it makes me feel like ME.  Although being pregnant is amazing and truly miraculous, I can honestly say I have not been one of those women who just LOVES being pregnant.  I haven't.  I am going to LOVE being a mama, but.....this whole having her inside me thing is just not my cup of tea lol.  And so, when I run, it makes me feel like I can still do something that isn't effected or changed by being pregnant.

So all that being said - in just a few weeks I will get to hold my baby girl in my arms and all this pregnancy-stuff will be over.  I am SO READY!!!  I literally wake up every day now praying that she'll come today.  Who knows?  Maybe today will be the day!

Finally, I found this on google today and thought it was a pretty comprehensive list of reasons!!!

Fifty Reasons to Run During Pregnancy

  1. It’s free.
  2. It’s fun.
  3. It’s good for your heart.
  4. It’s good for your lungs.
  5. It helps keep your core muscles strong.
  6. Running during pregnancy is a stress-reliever.
  7. It can strengthen your baby’s heart.
  8. It can help your baby’s brain develop.
  9. Running during pregnancy can help you sleep better.
  10. It’s easy to modify as your pregnancy progresses. (You can slow down and add walk breaks.)
  11. It’s a chance to bond with your baby.
  12. It will give you a reason to buy a super cute “Running for Two” tank.
  13. Running during pregnancy helps prevent unnecessary weight gain.
  14. You don’t need any special equipment.
  15. If you run outside, you’ll get the added benefit of Vitamin D.
  16. It helps prevent high blood pressure.
  17. Sweating can promote circulation and fight infections.
  18. It supports your metabolism.
  19. Running during pregnancy can help you appreciate your body.
  20. Running during pregnancy is an opportunity to practice controlling your breath.
  21. As your belly grows, you’ll have a reason to “borrow” your husband’s workout clothes.
  22. You may experience less shortness of breath during pregnancy.
  23. If you run outside, you can connect with nature.
  24. It’s a chance to be social – run with friends, your spouse, or even an older child in a jogger!
  25. It keeps your bones strong.
  26. Running during pregnancy makes it easier to get back in shape postpartum.
  27. It can help prevent lower back pain.
  28. It will give you more energy (and less fatigue!).
  29. You may experience less nausea.
  30. You may experience less heartburn.
  31. You may have fewer varicose veins (or none at all).
  32. You may get fewer pregnancy-associated leg cramps.
  33. Running during pregnancy can help prevent swelling in your hands and feet.
  34. It can improve posture.
  35. It can prevent constipation.
  36. Running during pregnancy is an opportunity to listen to your body.
  37. It can increase your tolerance for labor.
  38. It can improve your body image.
  39. It can reduce your risk of developing preeclampsia.
  40. It can reduce your risk of developing pregnancy-induced hypertension.
  41. You’ll be less likely to develop gestational diabetes.
  42. You might inspire other pregnant women to stay active.
  43. It can shorten your labor.
  44. It’s associated with a lower risk of having a c-section.
  45. It can reduce your risk of developing postpartum depression.
  46. Running during pregnancy can increase your stamina and muscle strength.
  47. It can reduce bloating.
  48. It will help you feel like your regular, non-pregnant self.
  49. It can decrease your chances of needing medical interventions during labor.
  50. You’ll spread the word to other men and women that it’s OK to run while pregnant.

Friday, July 10, 2015

35 weeks

Wow, I'm going to be done with this bump-dates in just a few weeks, huh?  I'm sure my weekly updates from there on out will consist of baby-updates mostly!!  I can't wait to take tons of pictures of my little sweetie in all her cute outfits that people have given us!  She's going to adequately flowered, ribboned, and headbanded-up DAILY.  This mama is a girly-girl, so it's no surprise that I'm super excited about all things pink and princessy for Elenna :-)

35 weeks
How I'm Feeling: Still super tired and draggy by about noon every day.  Somedays my stomach feels more sore than others - today I felt like everything was stretched to the max.  Then it can get kind of uncomfortable when Elenna pops an elbow or a head out.  She is truly running out of room in there.  Can't imagine she must be very comfortable these days either!

My belly button has graduated from an innie to kind of an outie-wanna be.  It's flat most of the time, but when I do a plank or cough or sneeze, it pops out. :-/  Ugh!  How embarrassing.  Ah well.  Wont last for too much longer though haha.  Still no stretch marks, I don't even put lotion on every single night like I should.  I tend to put it on when I remember (every few days or so) or whenever I just start feeling "stretched" or super tight.  I don't think I'd mind a stretchmark or two, except for the fact that a friend told me recently that they actually are kind of painful when they first make their appearance :-/  But I'm good so far!

How Big Is Elenna? According to Baby Center, "Your baby doesn't have much room to maneuver now that he's over 18 inches long and tips the scales at 5 1/4 pounds (about the size of a honeydew melon). Because it's so snug in your womb, she isn't likely to be doing somersaults anymore, but the number of times she kicks should remain about the same. Her kidneys are fully developed now, and his liver can process some waste products. Most of her basic physical development is now complete — he'll spend the next few weeks putting on weight."

Weight: Still about 9 pounds.  I've had a hard time feeling very hungry recently - I was suuuupper hungry in the first trimester and even second, but it's definitely slowed down which is weird.  I do try to make sure I eat three good meals a day, even if I don't feel like snacking in between.  But it can be hard when I just feel like sleeping / laying around / drinking chocolate tea.   Bing cherries were on sale for $1/lb this week (be still my fluttering heart....) so I got several pounds and cannot express how much I have been LOVING them.  Oh goodness.  If this child comes out one big giant fruit I will not be surprised.  I've eaten so much fruit this pregnancy!!

Exercise:  When I MAKE myself get out there and do it, I can still impress myself with how far I can run being 35 weeks pregnant lol.  It's just the making myself part that can be hard some days.

Monday: 4 mile run
Tuesday: 3.6 mile run
Wednesday: 55 minute Jillian Michaels workout
Thursday: nothing because of shin splints :-/
Friday: well that's today!  I'm SUPPOSED to go for a 4 mile run.  I will.  I promise.

Labor: NO I am not in labor.  But it's definitely on the forefront of my mind these days!  And I can honestly say that I'm not worried about it one bit, I'm really not afraid or anything (maybe I should be?).  It's inevitable and....definitely too late to turn around.......and, well, it's going to happen so I'm just like, "bring it on!" .  Plus, it's what will bring that amazing moment that I dream about ALL the time, when they finally place my baby girl on my chest and I get to see her and feel her and hear her tiny cries for the first time.  What could NOT be worth that?   I'll do anything for that experience :-)

Additionally, there is so much hype and stereo-typing about labor and women screaming or cussing or going out of their minds during it that I'm.....well, slightly curious to see what it's all about.  Is it REALLY that bad?  It can't be.  Gosh, my mom did it three times lol.  As long as David is there and I can just breathe and focus on something besides the pain, I think I'll be fine.

So today I am headed up to Tucson for our church's women's retreat!  I'm super excited about it.   I'm honored to be able to lead worship again this year and have really tried to take more time to focus on learning how to actually worship vs. perform.   It's hard when you get nervous.  But I've realized that I do SO much better when I'm not nervous, and the nervousness all comes from being worried about what people think or if I mess up.  And I've gotten to the point where I'm like, you know what, I am here to lead others in worship.  Who cares if I mess up?  That's totally not the point.  I have to get to a place in my mind where I separate how I sound from my personal place of worship in that moment.
That helps alot.  I'm just really excited to see what the Lord does this year, and to listen to all the great teaching.  This year is all about marriage so yay!  Good stuff to implement!!  

Plus there will be plenty of yummy food there and great fellowship - so I'm looking forward to relaxing and enjoying every minute of it :-)

Monday, July 6, 2015

Summer Life

Phew!  Summer is hot!  But I hate the winter so I'm pretty much enjoying these hot summer days :-) I was BORN for tank tops and swimming and being outside and baking in the sun and just feeling alive in the warmth. Something about winter makes me feel....non-human.  lol

Someone posted this on facebook and I loved it.  It's so true!  I love the idea of making your kids your reason to workout and be healthy.  Elenna needs her mommy - and I want to be there for her, keeping up with her every step of the way.  I've found that exercising daily really does help boost my energy levels (who would've thunk) and so, if I'm feeling sluggish and tired, I know the BEST thing I can do for myself is to go for a run.  I feel so good afterwards.   So I'm guessing that when those 1AM feedings and midnight diaper changes happen, the only way I'll be able to survive the next day is if I can squeeze in a run .  :-)

My sister is here this week for a visit, yay!!  She came on Friday and will be here til Wednesday.  This was us at the 4th of July parade the other day.   It was muggy out, but we had a great time - and it was SO good to see her!!!  I haven't see her since Thanksgiving so we have lots to catch up on.  Plus she hasn't seen me pregnant yet, so she's getting her "bump-time" in before it disappears here in few weeks!!!

So, I found that Sierra Vista finally created a No Excuse Mom group!  I was really excited to join.  I don't make it to every workout (because often I just do my own at home) but this one was especially fun.   We had a lady come do a Zumba class with us - and wow, I didn't know you could work up such a sweat just dancing!!  What a fun way to get cardio in, though!  (I'm in the grey top and pink hat there on the left).

Lastly, this has become my montra for pretty much anything and everything in life.  For my workouts of course, and then for all those other priorities that can get pushed aside: devotions, keeping the house clean ALL the time, keeping up important friendships, and then of course, school.  Bleh - school - it's coming up again next month.  Nooooo!!!  

*sigh* but also with it is coming my sweet little baby girl.  :-)  So bring it on, August!!

Tuesday, June 30, 2015

And The Doctor Said....

.....that everything looks fantastic!  Yippee!  

Had my appointment early this morning and Elenna is measuring exactly where she needs to be growth-wise.  I did ask about weight gain (actually lost a pound) and he said he isn't worried at all.  He said the only reason he would be concerned is if I were beginning to taper off growth-wise, and measuring behind where I am supposed to be.  

But I'm not :-) So he gave me the ok to continue with my exercise routines, yay :-) 

Although this is NOT my exercise routine - it's sadly true haha.  I had to buy a rubber shower mat 'cause I've gotten so unsteady in the shower I was afraid of falling one of these days....

I passed my glucose testing as well - in fact when the doctor checked the results he was like, "oh wow, these are really good - these are better than mine!"   lol yay for not having gestational diabetes!!

As for the pain I've been having in my pelvis, he said it's just all that good ligament stretching that's going on as my uterus continues to expand and baby gets bigger.   

So everything is just ticking along nicely and we get to see Elenna ONE LAST TIME on the ultrasound before delivery!!  So, in two more weeks.  That is also when they will be checking to see if my placenta has moved up far enough for a natural delivery (which he assured me is almost inevitable).  

Good report at the doctor made me happy - came home and ran four miles :-) Just a few more weeks people!  We are getting close!!!!! 

Monday, June 29, 2015

33 Weeks 2 Days

It appears I am very due for bump-date!  Sorry I missed last weeks.  Things got hectic and although I took pictures I never ended up making them into a blog post. :-/ Ma bad!  

33 weeks 2 days
How I'm Feeling:  So here we are at 33 weeks and 2 days!  I canNOT believe I am this far along.  I remember being just barely pregnant in the beginning and thinking how strange and weird it would be to be at the very end of this pregnancy, instead of the beginning.  

Well, now that I'm there, I can say that the way it, sore.  Yes.  To be quite honest with you I'm just sore.  I feel like I'm always saying "ugh, my baby hurts" to David, I'm sure he's quite tired of hearing it!!  I don't like people touching my belly and I don't like wearing seat belts. I feel like I'm back at week 17 when my stomach just got ultra-sensitive.  Crazy!  It hurts to roll over in bed or get up suddenly or even David laying his arm across me at night is just.....*shudder* get if off!!!! lol

However, there have been other perks to this adventure, like I've been sleeping like a dead woman for the last few weeks.  Around week 30 it seems like I've just been on a down-hill slope energy-wise.  I feel super draggy and tired by about noon. :-/ And then I sleep like a ROCK all night long.  Sometimes I don't even wake up to go to the bathroom (truly a miracle these days) at all during the night.   But it's nice that I'm at a stage in life where, if I need to, I can just take naps whenever during the day - and I know this opportunity is sadly going to be very, VERY short lived haha.  In a matter of weeks I'm going to be sleeping less than I ever have before, probably.  :-)

Thankfully, David and I are both over those horrendous colds we had.  Yuck, I don't want that anytime again soon.  

Kind of felt icky over the weekend though, wasn't exactly sure what was going on.  Had alot of achiness in my pelvic area, a little cramping, and everything felt tight and just....wrong. 'Course I immediately started thinking oh great, pre-term labor or something.  :-/  But since Elenna was moving around a lot and there was nothing else seriously abnormal I decided to just wait it out and drink lots of water (dehydration can cause those Braxton Hicks!).  Thankfully I started feeling better yesterday, and so far today everything's good.  I will definitely mention it at my appointment tomorrow, though.  

How Big Is Elenna? According to the internet....average size for this gestation is about 17 inches long and 4.2 pounds.  Wow!!  My baby girl is getting big!  Apparently that's the size of a pineapple.  I totally believe it.  Even though EVERYONE comments on how small they think I am, it's so weird because I feel like a cow.  Going from where I used to be (fairly small) to where I am now, it's like.....a night and day difference to me.  I have this big ole' watermelon belly always sitting in my lap and for me, it just seems very very humoungous lol.  So don't think I'm that "lucky pregnant girl" who's just breezing through this and probably not even noticing she's pregnant - goodness, I notice it.  I'm ginormous :-/

Exercise: That being said....I'm still able to stay really pretty active!  It seems like continuing my workouts (even when I need to modify them) helps me stay sane somehow.  It makes me feel like I can still do something.  I'm not a complete invalid yet :-) Plus, having fitness goals to work towards keeps me motivated and most importantly, moving.  And hey! I still have some side-oblique definition goin' on too!  So that's encouraging!

So here was last week's workouts:

Monday: 4 mile run
Tuesday: 55 minute Jillian Michaels Youtube Workout (cardio/kickboxing)
Wednesday - 4 mile run / Zumba workout in the evening with my No Excuse Mom's Group
Thursday - same Jillian Michaels workout as Tuesday
Friday - 3 mile run

I've modified now from running every day to every other day, more for my knees than anything else.  Plus I'm now taking the weekends off of any exercise completely.  But I'm really enjoy doing Jillian Michaels on the days I don't run.  It's still a great cardio workout, plus she does some good core stuff that I feel will be really helpful in getting me all strengthened up for labor :-)

Weight: Seems like I'm up another pound this week, so 9 lbs total so far. Still feeling this enormous need for peanut butter lol, so I'm eating it in spades. Although I've been a stickler for not eating bread hardly ever, I've let up in recent weeks 'cause I LOVE my peanut butter and honey toast every morning!!!  Lots of bing cherries, strawberries, avacadoes, eggs, cheese, yogurt, and taco salads - oh and of course my bag of Girhadelli chocolate chips I keep in the freezer, oops.  I've also really been enjoying Trim Healthy Mama smoothies recently too, with some of David's yummy chocolate protein powder :-)

Also, I am really loving this yummy vanilla-caramel chai tea I got on sale the other day.  I haven't had chai in forever!!  Add a little sweet cream in there, and it's just super yummy.

 Tomorrow I have my next doctor apointment, so we'll see if they think I need to be more intentional about gaining weight, or if they think I'm ok.  So far they've been totally fine with my exercise and weight gain, so now that we're in the 30's week-wise, I'll be interested to see if they start hammering me to gain more or something. Guess we'll find out!  From now on my appointments are every 2 weeks!!

Even if I do have to slow down my workouts, I'm very happy that I've been able to workout so much this far. I'm still proud of how active I've stayed, so if I need to quit at some point in the coming weeks, I still consider it a victory to have been able to run this far into my pregnancy.  Elenna and I have run a lot of miles together, that's for sure :-)  And hopefully many many more to come!  As soon as I get past the 6 weeks post-partum recovery, you can be sure I'll be hitting the pavement again, just with a jogging stroller in front of me this time :-)

Friday, June 19, 2015

Marriage / Contentment

It occurred to me that some of you might wonder what we've spent the last 10 months of our marriage actually doing together.  Of course I have school and David has work; but in between those, you really have do stuff together or life can get monotonous!  Although school kept me depressingly busy, in between care plans, papers, study guides, and online lectures, we've managed to have a pretty fun time together so far :-)  I've had to learn when to say "enough" to school.  When to just put an assignment down and be DONE.  When to know that it's ok to skip a lecture, go home early, or turn in something late.  Obviously this can't be all the time (or I'd have failed nursing school a long time ago!), but for sanity's sake, I really do have to say "no" sometimes to school and "yes" to the rest of my life!

 photo 928a96fc-d7c2-418e-8e84-d54048a69ab8_zpssqnkz0ko.jpg

We've been hiking a few times together.  Not super my favorite activity in the whole wide world, but beautiful nonetheless and good exercise :-)  Plus it's something David loves doing so if it means spending time making him happy, I'm all in :-)

Cooking together and eating together is fun, too :-)
My taste for Mexican food has definitely changed! (shocker, I know.)  I still loathe shredded beef and red sauce and tamales...but David makes some killer bean burritos and Mexican rice, and there's a few recipes I've been making quite a bit that aren't too bad, like Baked Tacos or Chicken Enchiladas. 
We've found a meat market right around the corner from us that sells FRESH (like, made right there) flour tortillas that are to die for, so that's what we use most of the time and they are so yummy!!

Since we still drive into Sahaurita for church on Sundays, we seem to spend quite a bit of time in the car :-)   But hey! Makes for great conversations, really dumb jokes, good Adventures in Odyssey listening time (YES I still listen.....don't judge), or reading a book to whoever's driving.  After church we almost always head over to David's parents house and get to have lunch with them.  Then it's the looooong drive back home.  But honestly, being together makes everything perfect :-)

I think that's one of the key things about staying happy in marriage.  Obviously not every day will be romantic or amazing or a sweep you off your feet kind of day.  But learning to have fun and enjoy each others company in the ups and downs of life is super important.  Our beloved little car has broken down numerous times.  The dirty laundry does pile up in the closet.  There have been raw eggs splattered on the ground after rolling off the refrigerator shelf.  Our water heater did go out this winter (equaling some VERY cold showers for about a week).  The air conditioning in our car is currently not working (so much fun in the summer heat, right!).  

Life happens!  BUT - stepping back and just laughing at ourselves and our current predicament is essential to lightening up the situation.  That's pretty much how we've gotten through little bumps on the road!  Just keep laughing together :-)

 photo 6cafa8b7-1b45-4ee3-9463-6639bf2a9be3_zpsffhglcg8.jpg

We like kissing.  

Ok I said it. *gasp*

 But we also like doing other things together, like working out, or swimming, or having our date night on Tuesday when it's $5 day at the movie theater.  We like spontaneously getting frozen yogurt, or going to the cafe at the library to get cookies, or even doing laundry together :-)  One thing I especially enjoy doing (which I haven't done in a while so maybe soon again!) is surprising David when I pick him up from work by having already ordered Olive Garden takeout and wearing my "little red dress" (yes I have one!).  It's just fun sometimes to make a regular evening extra-special, especially when I know he's tired or really hungry :-)  

 photo c2b64083-e69a-45aa-8d91-a53e21352d32_zpszkj7thkw.jpg

Like I said, I'm enjoying Mexican food more now lol.  But I'm still pretty picky!!  When we go out I almost always exclusively order a taco salad - pretty much can't go wrong with one of those.  (Plus the chip bowl it comes in is my favorite!) 

Of course talking about and dreaming of our little baby girl is also something we do alot of.  It's hard for both of us to imagine that we'll have her, an actual real baby, a daughter, in just two months!  Today we hit 32 weeks so we are definitely getting very close.  I really hope she comes early - I'm just dying to see what she looks like :-) 

So all in all, the fact of the matter is, there are a lot of stereotypes about marriage that we have stoutly defied.  Who says everyone else is right anyways?  Here are just a few that we've soundly knocked down already:

1. You need a large wedding fund so that you can have an expensive wedding. 
Wrong.  We set aside $800 as what we had to spend on our wedding budget and we loved our wedding.  Ok, maybe our's was minus all one thousand pinterest decoration ideas that are buzzing around out there, but we haven't gotten divorced yet, so probably it's ok right.....

2. You need to have a reeeallly nice honeymoon.  
Well, we did.  But not to Europe or anything.  Actually we got a discounted cabin for two nights in a nearby canyon.  Our incredibly reliable (yeah right) car kept stalling all the way up the mountain on our wedding night in the pouring rain - it was a miracle we actually got there lol.  And it rained solid the entire two days.  BUT our honeymoon was still so exciting and amazing and special.  :-)  I wouldn't change it for anything :-)

3. You need a cute little cottage with a white picket fence at the top of a hill.  
Nah, it's the apartment life for us.  But seriously, I LOVE our apartment!  I love how I've gotten to decorate it to my tastes just perfectly.  I almost always have our white lights on and a candle or two lit.  A coffee maker and a love seat makes the rest of it all come together.   As long as things stay clean and neat, it's beautiful. Yes it's small.  But why do we need more?  Actually I'm super happy that we even have a one-bedroom and not a studio (because we were seriously considering a studio apartment at first).  I love our lil' nest. :-)

4. Baby needs his / her own nursery.  
Why?  I didn't even get my own room until my sis moved away to college - and then it was kinda lonely and empty.  A baby (special as they are!) needs something to wear, something to eat, and a place to sleep.  So far, we have those three covered!  Anything we get additional to that is a superb luxury :-)  I'm learning to thin out, downsize, and figure out what the essentials are, for any aspect of life, not just a new baby.  

So for those of you who are single and reading this, just know that you can be very very happy with very very little :-) We didn't have $50,000 saved up prior to marriage.  We didn't go to Hawaii for our honeymoon.  Because we have an itty bitty apartment, we do get to endure noisy neighbors who enjoy partying all night.  I don't get to drive a Corvet to school (in fact a few times I've had to ride my bike!).  Some times we do have to just say "no" to something because the money isn't there.

But.  Our needs are well-met.  God has taken care of us, every time.  And most of all, we have each other.  I know that you can't "live on love" as the old saying goes, but it's true that love can get you through a lot.  We don't have a lot of stuff, but we do have each other.  Finding out that your spouse means more than stuff  you want is definitely monumental in having a joyful marriage.