Monday, April 30, 2012

evolution of the belly button

I have a very deep "innie" belly button by nature. Try as you might, you would never be able to see the bottom of it. Unless, of course, I was pregnant.

My belly button has progressed in random stages this pregnancy. It has slowly become more shallow. It eventually reached the point where if I stretched my back it poked out a little. It has evolved from a deep canyon to a shallow ravine to a thin line.

Shallow ravine is a thing of the past: we have officially reached wrinkle territory. The top has folded over the bottom. Jon's been saying (I might add he's been saying this for at least 4-6 weeks now) that "it's just a matter of time til it pops!" I'm not ready. Jon is excited to see what the bottom of my belly button looks like. All I know is that any time I catch a glimpse of my wrinkle in the mirror I can't help but laugh at how ridiculous it looks...

Saturday, April 28, 2012

all things new house

We're scheduled to close May 4th and have reached an agreement with Fannie Mae. As a result, I feel much better about posting some pictures of our first house together. I fondly refer to it as our little fixer-upper... although it does need a moderate amount of fixing up. In addition to these teaser photos, here are more:
Front of house. Those lions aren't there anymore...

Back of house

Entry way

Where fridge will go in the kitchen
Living room
Bedroom 1
Nursery closet

Master bedroom
Master bedroom his & her closets
I'm SUCH a sucker for linen closets. This house has TWO.
Upstairs full bathroom
Bathroom... definitely overhauling this space
Stairs to the attic 
Attic / probable playroom for BF
The major items on our "to do" list include ripping out the carpet/drywall from the basement (it's water damaged), redoing the kitchen floor, possibly painting the kitchen cabinets (if I can convince Jon to let me paint them white), tearing out all of the wall tile in that upstairs bathroom, and taking care of some grading/drainage issues outside. We have to get a roofer and mason in to patch up a few spots on the roof and fix part of the chimney, as well as an electrician to finish off some wiring down in the basement. We definitely have our work cut out for us so we're hoping we can still close on or around May 4 so we can get as many of the 'big items' done as possible before we have to be out of our apartment by June 1. We picked out paint colors for each room except the attic, a half bath on the first floor, and the living room and I'm really excited to get my hands on a paintbrush. I think a fresh coat of paint will do wonders for this house. Eventually we plan on refinishing the hardwood floors throughout among other things, but that's lower on our priority list right now. We're a delicate combination of eager and overwhelmed at the moment but we're both so excited to get to work on our blank canvas and make it our home.

Thursday, April 26, 2012

family portrait

I'm a nervous traveler. Leading up to my business trip this week I had horrible visions of my airplane crashing / Jon losing not just me but also the baby. Every time I thought of it I bawled because I didn't want him to have to be alone.

Sunday night I insisted we take a few pictures together, just in case, so he'd have recent photos of us. We took a few from chest/up, and then I insisted we take a full-body picture so he'd have a pseudo-picture of the baby. Here's what we got:

I think it captures our essence pretty well and therefore it is one of my new favorite pictures of the 3 of us. 

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

TSA peer pressure

I got back from New Orleans very late last night. It was an absolutely crazy 2 days literally jammed full from 4:30 am - 11:30 pm EST on Monday to 6 am - 9:30 pm CST Tuesday. Jon had bought me compression socks for the flights (I had 4 over 2 days) and while they did a decent job at alleviating most of the swelling I was particularly puffy in the ankle department when I got home last night.

On the whole the trip was great. I didn't get to see too much of New Orleans but I did check out the French Quarter and had the best virgin pina colada ever. My poster presentation at the conference went well and I'm getting more and more confident with each conference I attend. I'd say the most upsetting part of the trip was when I was leaving Cleveland on Monday morning. I had decided I wanted to opt out of the full body scan because I simply don't trust the safety of them yet, especially with regard to pregnancy. When I got up front I mentioned I wanted to opt out and do the pat down instead. The guy I asked informed me, "it's not an x-ray machine, it's radio frequencies" while the female TSA agent on the other side of the scanner was waving me to come through. I glanced at the ever-growing line of people behind me and stepped into the scanner and before I could say anything about wanting to opt out she said, "it's perfectly safe. We've done all of the studies and everything. But I mean it's your right to opt out." In a nutshell, I felt totally peer-pressured and obliged with the full-body scan. Then I cried the rest of the way to my gate. I felt like I had somehow failed my unborn child. That I neglected to protect the baby because I could feel the stares and glares of everyone around me hot on my neck. I'm sure the hormones didn't help either.

The good news is I felt the baby kick most of that flight. That reassured me that BF was doing just fine. The other good news is that experience/how I felt after gave me the moxie to not repeat the process on my flight home from New Orleans. The best news is that I didn't get put in that situation in NO--I was directed to a line that was using traditional metal detectors instead of the full body scanner.

In house news, they finally have the boiler up and running! We also got a quote on some termite preventative treatments and they aren't cheap (just north of $1k) so I'm not sure if we'll be able to convince Fannie Mae to cover that after all. Hopefully we'll have more concrete answers/a revised closing date soon so we can plan accordingly. Here is a SUPER mini-teaser for you on some of the interior pics:
living room/front entrance
dining room (view from living room)
kitchen (left) and living room (right), view from dining room
In school news, I'm in the homestretch! I just have 3 presentations and half of a biomechanics assignment between me and finals. Jon is completely done with classes/finals and is wrapping up a paper that's due tomorrow. I know he's feeling much less stressed because when I got home from the airport he had cleaned, washed dishes, AND taken out the trash--all without any prompting from me. What a guy!

Saturday, April 21, 2012

should've known better.

On Wednesday I posted about patience. Given God's sense of humor, I should have known better than to declare my growth in this area.

The termite and boiler reports we were supposed to have gotten? Yeah. No dice. Well, technically I did get the termite report yesterday but that didn't leave much room for knowledge to be gleaned from it. The good news: they didn't actually find live, creepy termites. Did I mention just thinking or typing the word 'termites' literally makes me shudder? Because it does. I feel like they're crawling on me. I mean look at this. I almost died when I saw the Google image search results.
{Image Source}
But anyway, no live termites. Just evidence that termites once existed in part of the basement/evidence that they had been treated (traps around the property). I think they're supposed to go back early next week to give us an estimate on how much it will cost to do a preventative-type treatment. Which means I'll know that in a month. As for the boiler, not a peep. So we're still very much playing the waiting game. We've managed to push back our "drop dead" date to the 29th, which also means our closing date will move back should we decide to move forward. Where we stand now, there are really only 2 things that could break this deal for us:

1. Fannie Mae will refuse to pay for that preventative termite treatment I mentioned earlier
2. Fannie Mae will refuse to certify the boiler so if it breaks the first year we're not responsible for the cost to fix it

Given that Fannie Mae sells their properties "as is," I think there is a significant chance they will say no to one or both of those requests. Jon and I have decided that they either agree to both those conditions or we walk away. With our lease end date looming ever-nearer, I really hope we come to a resolution either way before May 1. Should this deal fall through, we will search for a new apartment/rental home and will not search to buy for the time being.

In other news, while Jon was playing with the baby (aka incessantly poking at my belly) the other day, he looked up at me and said, "All I picture is a little Marsala in there." Hear that, BF? Your daddy thinks you're a cat.

This will likely be my last post for a few days. I have an insane weekend and then I leave for New Orleans for a work conference first thing Monday morning so I won't have much time/energy to write. I've got brief layovers in Chicago and Baltimore going to/from New Orleans (respectively) so if you see a pregnant, cranky-looking blogger in the airport terminal it's probably me and you should come say hi. Also, if you have any restaurant suggestions in the French Quarter area of New Orleans that are not predominantly seafood/super pricey, I'd love to hear them. Finally, why is it news like this always pops up days before I'm supposed to fly when I'm already a very nervous traveler?

Wednesday, April 18, 2012


If there's one thing I've learned from this whole buying a house situation it's that I am impatient. Further, I have a hard time learning to BE patient. To trust God's will, perfect timing, and grace.

Our official deadline to have the house inspected and any issues mentioned to Fannie Mae was April 12. The utilities weren't even on by the 12th.

As you know, we've experienced inspection-related delay after delay. Today we were planning on having the boiler inspection/termite inspection done. The termite inspection was completed today--they found termites--but we won't know the depth of the issue until tomorrow when we get the report. The boiler inspection couldn't be completed today because when they went to dewinterize the boiler yesterday they discovered some broken part that needed to be replaced. I've been told it's being replaced/dewinterized tomorrow. I have my doubts.

It's really hard remembering to trust God through all of this "hurry up and wait" drama. We have options for both the termite/boiler situation. If the damage is mild, which our general home inspector seems to believe, then we are going to ask Fannie Mae to fix it. Furthermore, we are likely going to ask them to certify the boiler so if it craps out on us in the next year we're covered. That being said, we will be doing a lot more waiting and likely a lot more negotiating. It's anyone's guess if we'll have to walk away from the house at this point.

I'd be surprised if we do end up needing to walk away. Both of us have felt like God has been clearing the path for us this entire process. I believe this is God's will since my senses/comfort zone are screaming at me to run for the hills. We may not have a place to go when our lease expires. Our closing date may get pushed way back. We could be making the best decision of our lives by waiting patiently. Or we could make the worst decision of our lives and potentially overlook certain "signs" and move forward with something not willed for us. And yet I am filled with peace. I'm learning how to be patient, let go, and trust God. It's not been easy at all. I'm still struggling with it. But I know that everything will work out in the end.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

health win

Gestational diabetes?
I celebrated with a bag of Skittles.
I celebrated with some homework. Sigh. Don't hate. It's the end of the semester.

Now I just need to call the hospital I'm delivering at to schedule my RhoGAM injection. Other than that it's smooth sailing til my next OB appointment in May. Following that appointment I jump up from monthly to biweekly appointments which will be fun to hear BF's heartbeat but stressful to get there all the time. We're less than a month from the third trimester. I can't believe it.

Last night Marsala meowed at 3, 4, 5 and 6 am. She also puked on our bedroom windowsill at 4:30 am. Every time she meowed she woke BF who started kicking in a fury. Needless to say it was a good preview of what's to come and I'm exhausted today.

We have our termite inspection and the boiler inspection at the house on Wednesday. At that point we'll know definitively if we're moving forward (pending the bank's appraisal). Progress.

Monday, April 16, 2012

house update 4.0

Today was the general inspection. On the whole, the house checked out to about what we thought. The inspector did note some termite activity (sidebar, any time I type or think of the word 'termite' I shudder) in the basement so we have a termite inspector going in sometime this week to check that out. Hopefully it's nothing huge and can be taken care of with minimal cost.

The other big sadface moment of this inspection is that they failed to de-winterize the boiler. As such, we have no idea if it actually works. Our Realtor contacted the other Realtor to figure out a solution to this because the boiler being turned on was part of the deal in getting the inspection. Hopefully this doesn't push back closing dates any further...

Fingers still crossed tightly!

Saturday, April 14, 2012

saturday musings

Yesterday I had my OB appointment to check for gestational diabetes. I should get those results sometime Monday. When she tried to get a count on BF's heartbeat, BF kept wiggling and moving around which hindered her ability to get an accurate read. For what feels like the trillionth time this pregnancy we were informed that "that is one VERY active baby in there!" After the appointment, Jon and I did our weekly Aldi run. Then, after a really fun evening with our small group last night and then staying up late to talk when we got home, Jon and I slept in this morning. Well... Jon slept til 7 and I slept til 8. Either way, it was glorious!

This morning Jon offered to meet one of my lately-cravings: waffles. Butter waffles, to be exact. We topped them with blueberry syrup, fresh strawberries, and cool whip.

Today we have to run a few other errands and I'm getting lunch with my mom, sister, & mother-in-law to discuss baby shower plans which I'm really looking forward to. I also have to do some cleaning and physiology homework today, as well as wrapping up my intervertebral disc replacement paper. Happy Saturday!

Thursday, April 12, 2012

the sugars

Tomorrow I have to get tested for the sugars of the gestational variety.

I'm loading up on sugar today with the hopes that BF will have enough to carry over into tomorrow so that I'm not tempted to indulge in ice cream, chocolate, etc. before my appointment.

Our home inspection got pushed back to Monday because the water won't be turned on until Saturday so that's a bummer. But we officially have homeowner's insurance lined up which is another thing I can cross off my ever-growing "to do" list.

In other news, you know that moment when you see a photo tagged on Facebook of your husband dancing with some girl at your friend's wedding and you find yourself wondering who's that chubby chick he's dancing with? and you realize it's you? Yeah. Not a fun moment.
{Image Source}
Aside from this photo-induced sadface moment, Tiffany did an amazing job with J.O. and Cristina's wedding pictures in January!

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

general life updates

-Jon's almost done with school this semester! He just has about 2 weeks left and only a few exams/1 major project in his way. I've been a witness to just how much God has sustained him this semester. It's incredible.
-We got credit approved for our mortgage--our final approval will depend on the appraisal of the house, which should be completed within the next week and a half.
-Our home inspection is tentatively scheduled for Friday--we have to confirm that Fannie Mae will have all utilities turned on by then, but we're keeping our fingers crossed that they'll come through for us.
-I finished a draft of my biomechanics paper. It's very short and I need to go back and add a few things per my professor's suggestion, but that should only take another hour or two.
-I feel more pregnant than ever. I got my first comment from a stranger asking when I was due and I think it's safe to say I've officially passed the awkward-beer-belly-size phase and am into the nope-she's-definitely-pregnant phase.
-We went and got a ton of paint chips over the weekend to start narrowing down what colors we want in each room at the new house. We're hoping to take them to the inspection on Friday to hold them up against the woodwork in the house to make final decisions on what we think would look good.
-Last night when I was in bed I sneezed and my top retainer flew across the room. It took me a solid five minutes to find it. When I told Jon about it after he got home from school he couldn't stop laughing. I was perplexed.
-I've been craving seafood--nothing in particular, just whatever I see on those Red Lobster commercials. I hate seafood. Such an odd feeling.
-I'm officially not convinced Baby Flip is a boy. I realized that I have no real "gut feeling" towards either gender anymore. Although I did have a dream last night BF was a boy.

Sunday, April 8, 2012

easter 2012

He is Risen!

Today we celebrate the fact that Jesus defeated death so that we could all find a way to Heaven. Sometimes it's easy for me to forget the importance behind this holiday and my hope is that once we have our baby we will instill on him or her the glory surrounding Christ's death and resurrection.

We started our morning at church and followed it up with some cleaning and homework. At lunch we headed over to my parent's house and it was really enjoyable. Sadly it didn't work out to get to Youngstown to spend part of the day with Jon's family but we're excited to travel there in a few weeks for Jon's cousin's first communion.

At my parent's we ate an INCREDIBLE lunch of ham, cheesy potatoes, rolls, salad, and green bean casserole followed up with Superman hot fudge sundaes. I should probably pause to explain what Superman ice cream is because I'm pretty sure it's a Midwestern thing--it's three flavors of ice cream: yellow-dyed vanilla, blue moon and cherry and is delish. Following lunch we dyed Easter eggs and popped these weird Easter poppers. Then our cousins, Laura and Al, dropped by for a bit. It was wonderful spending time with my family and I'm so excited that this time next year I'll be able to dress Baby Flip up in his or her Easter best :)
Jon in his paper crown from the Easter popper
Me, Baby Flip, & Jacqui in our paper crowns
Gram & Mom (and paper crowns)
Dad in his paper crown
Mine and Jon's Easter baskets (yes, my mom still hides baskets for us and I love it)
Our eggs! My sister's are mostly on the right and mine are mostly on the left.. Mom made the stork
My sister had mad rubberband skills making her eggs and she also made an egg that reminded me of the ocean.

Friday, April 6, 2012

the cruelest assignment

I've been chiseling away at my biomechanics term paper over the last few weeks. My topic? Intervertebral disc replacement. I won't lie, it's actually a pretty fascinating topic. So what's my beef? Here are the requirements:

-half-inch margins on all sides
-Times New Roman font (he's onto our bigger fonts like Arial apparently...)
-12 pages
-size 12 font

I feel like I have said everything there is to say (and then some) about invertebral disc replacement. I feel like I've bored my reader to death. And I'm only on page 6. Wanna see how I probably look after putting in 3-4 hours this afternoon on it?

Like I'm carrying a vampire baby that's sucking out my life.


Thursday, April 5, 2012

mental nesting

Jon and I have been discussing the nursery at great lengths over the last week or so. While this is probably dangerous given the house hasn't been inspected yet and we still aren't *100%* sure we'll be buying it as a result, it hasn't stopped us.

Here are some of our tentative plans:
-light grey walls with some modern, light orange pinstripes
-painting a dresser that we were gifted fo' free from some dear friends--the frame will be white and the drawers will be light orange with silver hardware that we got on clearance at Target for $2.99/box!
-hopefully buying this carpet:
-and this fan:
-my mom is making our crib bedding and we've gotten to work with her on the fabric selections--so excited to see how it all comes together!
-Turning all of the Menchie's spoons we've collected into some sort of a mobile/decoration that involves spray paint and fishing line
-moving this chair into the nursery from our bedroom
-making some prints (painting or otherwise) to hang on the walls based on Etsy-related inspiration

I am SO looking forward to getting my hands on the house keys to start working on the nursery... I suppose we need to get it inspected first.

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

oh you know... house update {3.0}

Not too much new to report over here in Flipland.

Oh, you know, except that we just bought our first house. Here's how Nikki and I reacted to the news:

I can't even believe it. We put a counter in to Fannie Mae yesterday morning and got a response from them by yesterday evening. They countered with a number that was less than a thousand dollars more than the highest we had decided we would be willing to go. Our Realtor quickly responded with a slight variation of our best and final offer (we had to increase our earnest money deposit but that's no biggie) and then today we got news that they agreed to it!

Obviously we need to sign a hot ton of papers and the house still needs to pass some inspections (namely getting the roof looked at, checking for termite damage, etc.) which could be a dealbreaker. We don't foresee them finding anything seriously wrong with it though based on the preliminary walk-through Jon's dad and our friends Mr. Barnes and Scooter made. Assuming all goes well with the inspection we have a close date of April 30. That will give us a solid month to make it livable, fix a few things, paint some walls, etc. and then move all our stuff in before our lease expires. My brain is currently in overdrive on the nursery. We have big plans for that room after not even considering it for, well, the last 4.5 months. If everything goes through you'll probably not hear from me the month of May thanks to home reno's and of course finals, spare some scant  DIY and house updates. Fingers crossed!

Sunday, April 1, 2012

team green

I regular baby boards and chat with other mamas expecting their first in August. It's a great community to take concerns and questions to because we're all in the same boat. Now that we've passed the halfway point, most of these women have found out their baby's genders and post things like "team pink!" and "team blue!" The 5 or so of us who elected not to find out have dubbed ourselves team green.

Jon saw me posting in a team green board today and asked what that meant. After I told him he looked at me and said, "I'm team..... what's the other one's name that's not Edward?"
Me: "Jacob??"
Jon: "Yeah. I'm team Jacob."

....I'm not even INTO the Twilight books so it's not like I talk at great length about the plot/characters. I don't know where the boy gets these things.