Friday, September 30, 2011

52 Books: Book 41


Being pregnant has influenced several of my reading choices this year. My most recent book being Natural Childbirth the Bradley Way by




Wednesday, September 28, 2011

33Weeks.5Days.


This week I thought I would write about the importance of exercise and diet in my pregnancy. Thankfully I have been able to continue to be very active, practicing yoga twice a week and cardio kickboxing twice a week. These workouts make me feel great {even on the days I don't feel like hauling myself out of bed} and they provide some normalcy to my life.

The importance of my diet and exercising really hit home this week. This past weekend we were out of town visiting family for our baby shower. By Sunday I was extremely swollen and uncomfortable – really for the first time. I could barely put on my shoes and my hands felt strange.

It dawned on me that when we travel I don't exercise and my healthy eating goes out the window. I eat way too many sweets, I don't drink enough water and I drink way too much caffeine. After we got home on Sunday night I felt truly miserable. I googled how to reduce swelling and read that you should drink more water.

Monday I made myself go to yoga and I drank a ridiculous amount of water throughout the day. By Tuesday I could wear my tennis shoes again and I went to kickboxing. Today the swelling is pretty much gone and I am back to feeling normal. 

I love how strong I feel when I can hold the poses in yoga {even with the extra 20 pounds that I am carrying around}. I love that my endurance is still strong during kickboxing – I never have to slow down or take a break even though I am practically 34 weeks pregnant. I believe {and hope} that this strength and endurance will serve me well during the coming labor and delivery of our baby as well as during my recovery process.

pleated poppy

What I Wore Wednesday
Cardigan from Forever 21.
T-shirt from Motherhood.

Jeans from Kohls {yay for relaxed fit, stretchy jeans from my pre-pregnancy days}.
Chacos from REI {incidentally these are the shoes I could not fit on my feet on Sunday}.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Thoughts on Dormers


The closer we get to having our baby, the more I start to think about parenting type things. Things that have never crossed my mind before.

For instance last week I was looking out the nursery window and it dawned on me that I once lived in a house that had dormers. I was between the ages of 8 and 10 and for some reason I thought it was a good idea to knock the screen out of the window and crawl out and sit on the roof. What 8-year-old thinks that is a good idea??? I have no idea if this was my own adventurous spirit or if a friend encouraged me to do it. I do remember that my friend and I did this on a regular basis.

So now I am worried. We have dormers in both upstairs bedrooms AND the bathroom. I can just envision our kid {or kids} crawling out the window and walking down the roof to the other bedroom. I mean it was something I did as a kid, so what's to say our kid won't do something similar? 

This past weekend I told my parents about my penchant for sitting on the roof as a kid and asked if they knew I had done such things. They had no idea. So the good news is that if my kids do climb out windows and hang out on the roof I will probably be clueless about it...

When I was 10-12 I graduated from sitting on rooftops to climbing out windows and jumping off of the roof at my best friend's house in the middle of the night. We would wander around our small town before sneaking back and using a bicycle as a ladder to climb back onto a lower level of the house and back inside through a second floor window.

When I was growing up, my mom used to tell me stories of her adventures – she has quite a few of her own. I don't know if her stories made me more willing to try things or if I just had a natural compulsion to be adventurous. I never did the things she did, but I did plenty of my own stupid things. At least we have several years until we truly have to worry about kids getting brave {stupid} enough to climb out on rooftops... right?

Greeting Cards: Baby Showers

Thank you to my sister and best friend for throwing me an amazing baby shower.

*This is the ninth in my series of twelve "I Love You More" cards   
that I have designed and will be posting throughout the year.
 
© Cheree Moore

Monday, September 26, 2011

Baby Shower


Saturday was our baby shower for Jack. My sister did a great job of hosting. I love that I have such a creative family... I wonder where those genes came from {kidding, thank you mom and dad for passing along your creativity to us}.


While Angela was busy decorating on Friday night, Robert wandered downstairs and said, "I thought we weren't decorating the whole house?" I don't think Angela is capable of throwing a party without going all out. Of course, it looked great and I appreciate all of her trouble.


We had a potluck style BBQ. Many thanks to all of our family members for bringing such wonderful dishes. Everything tasted superb. 


Thank you to my best friend, Kristalynne, for coming up with the games. The trivia was hilarious.

Examples: 
What was the best way to calm Daniel as a baby?
A) Take the car apart
B) Build a deck
C) Read a calculus book
D) Hold him and rock him
What was Cheree's first word?
A) Yoga
B) Dada
C) Mountain
D) Daniel
We had such a fun time and enjoyed seeing everyone who was able to make it while missing those who couldn't come. We are looking forward to introducing Baby Jack to all of our loved ones in the very near future.


Sunday, September 25, 2011

You're Looking Swell...


We just made it home from a wonderful weekend spent with family and friends. My sister and best friend from high school threw us an amazing shower. We feel very blessed that so many people that love us came out to celebrate the coming arrival of baby Jack. Tomorrow I will blog about our wonderful shower, but wanted to write a quick post about a recent pregnancy-related experience...

A couple of weeks ago, I took my wedding rings off because I was noticing some mild swelling in my hands. The rings still fit, but I didn't want to run into an issue of not being able to get them off my hand. 

Now fast forward to Friday... we were getting ready to leave for Nashville for the weekend and I noticed my rings sitting on my bathroom counter next to the sink. In my mind I thought that maybe I should take them with me just in case someone broke into our house while we were gone and stole them {unlikely but the thought did cross my mind}. So I slipped my rings onto my slightly swollen baby finger and we headed to Nashville.

During the course of the weekend I proceeded to move my rings back and forth between my ring finger and my baby finger – sometimes it just felt too snug on my ring finger and sometimes it felt too loose on my baby finger.

This morning I actually woke up with really swollen hands and struggled to pull the rings off of my ring finger. Throughout the course of the day I proceeded to experience THE WORST SWELLING of my life. It was so bad that when we left my sister's house I discovered that neither pairs of my shoes fit. Boo.

We drove to Murfreesboro to visit with Daniel's dad before heading home. When we arrived at his dad's house, we went inside and I mentioned the swelling to Wesley – about this time I looked down at my baby finger and realized that my engagement ring {the one with the diamonds} was GONE. I tried not to panic but abruptly ran outside to tell Daniel and search our car.

Daniel and I looked everywhere that we could think of and even called my brother-in-law and asked him to look around their house as well. All of this was to no avail. We finally gave up our search and hoped for the best while we finished our visit with Wesley.

We were really hoping the ring would be somewhere in the car, but on the drive home Daniel asked if I thought we should replace the ring in the event that we couldn't find it. I told him we could cross that bridge if we came to it.

Once we were home, Daniel meticulously unloaded the car, starting with the big boxes in the back. As we got closer to the front, he went through every gift bag and open container that the ring might have fallen into. Thankfully it turned out that the ring was sitting loose on the back seat – it probably slipped off my finger when I had reached back to pet Sophie.

I am so thankful that we found that ring. It is now safely stored for the duration of my pregnancy...

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

32Weeks.5Days.

My Pregnancy By the Numbers...
226 prenatal vitamins swallowed.
220 minutes spent at they gym each week – I plan to keep it up until I can no longer tie my tennis shoes or it just gets to be too much. Cardio Kickboxing and Yoga keep me feeling great.
161 shots in my stomach.
145 beats per minute was what Jack's heartbeat was last Friday.
90 ounces of water is my daily goal.
51 days until our due date. 
20 pounds gained.
10 full body push ups is my current max before my arms turn to jelly – thank you 20 extra pounds.
9 OB visits completed. 
7 cups of coffee drank each week – don't judge me {they are half caf}.
7 ultrasounds – four of which were 3D to try to see Jack's face
4 pairs of maternity pants purchased {one pair of dress pants from Target, two pairs of jeans from Motherhood, one pair of used jeans from Unclaimed Baggage}.
3.7 is the average number of Braxton Hicks that I am feeling these days.
3 pairs of maternity pants returned – these things will not stay up on me. Wearing pants that sag makes me feel too uncomfortable. Not to mention I hate feeling my thighs touch and saggy pants = touching thighs :(
2 bruises currently on my belly from daily shots – sometimes it's more like 7, so I count this a positive.
1 leg cramp throughout this entire pregnancy so far.
0.42 is the average number of times I have to get up in the middle of the night to pee.
0 things purchased for Jack – oh my, we need to get on this. Baby shower this weekend will help us gauge what we need to get asap.

pleated poppy

What I Wore Wednesday
Shirt from Target. Skirt from American Eagle. Shoes from Sears.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

52 Books: Book 40




Last week's book was Gloryland by Shelton Johnson. It is the story of Elijah Yancy who is born on Emancipation Day in 1863. He is the son of sharecroppers who live in Spartanburg, South Carolina. Unfortunately they quickly learn that in the South emancipation did not mean equality.

Elijah's background is interesting in that he is both black and of Indian descent. As a teenager he witnesses a lynching and soon after he must leave the South in order to be spared his own life. He walks until he reaches Nebraska where he ends up joining the U.S. Army as part of the Calvary. 

Elijah struggles with being a part of an army that requires him to subdue Native Americans in the West and then sends him to the Philippines to help quell a rebellion. In both cases he realizes he is helping to take away land and freedoms from strangers – freedoms he has never experienced himself.

At the end of the story Elijah is sent to Yosemite to help patrol the newly created National Park. It is the first time he feels at home and that he has found a source of personal freedom. Along the way he realizes that he has lived most of his life being angry and he is looking for a way to leave that anger behind him.

This was a very good book though some components of it were fairly graphic – I had a particularly hard time reading the description of the lynching.

Excerpts from the book:
...He once told me that if you have to ask for something that was already yours, then you'd given it up. Up to that day Daddy believed as if he had rights, but he died outside that courthouse trying to claim what nobody should have to ask for.

When you're afraid, everything is clear, too clear, and the fear seems like something living, the shadow of everything you're seeing and feeling... I was afraid of everything and nothing, especially the nothing that's a hole living inside when you got no one near who cares if you live or die.

Seems like to get something in this world, you gotta take it from someone else.

If Anger is a place to live in, then I think 1898 is the year I moved all the way there. but when you're a good citizen of Anger, you're living alone and there ain't no church, no God to hear you raging, and no family near enough to get singed by your heat...

No one wants to die. No one wants to be forgotten, and to be forgotten is to die. maybe that's why I pray so much, so God can learn to pick my voice out of the noise he's got to listen to, so he can remember my voice.

I lived in Anger so long I forgot that there were other places you could live. I didn't notice that I had no neighbors and no friends. I didn't notice that being alone was a place I'd built with my own hands. When you're a good citizen of Anger, you're stuck inside you, feeling sorry for yourself cause there ain't nobody around to take up the slack.

Monday, September 19, 2011

What components of your cars air conditioner should not look like...

We had a pretty uneventful weekend. Sometimes it is nice to just chill. We made a little headway on the nursery – adding shelves to one of the closets. There is still much to do.

On Sunday Daniel worked on our Subaru's air conditioner. It has some kind of leak and over the last several weeks he has been on a mission to find the leak and fix it. He finally decided to replace the condenser and evaporator {he will have to correct me if I get any of this wrong}.

Anyways, the evaporator is located behind the glove box. Yesterday he removed the evaporator to install the new one and this is what he discovered:


Dirt and leaves and fur and who knows what is clogging everything up {on the right}! Compared to the new one {on the left} the old looks like it has been dragged through mud. We have no idea how it could be so gross since it is a closed system that is behind the glove box {inside the car, separate from where the engine is}. 


It really looks like it could be from a vehicle that had been through a flood, but that makes no sense because none of the the interior looks like it had been through a flood. We are really scratching our heads on this one.


Tonight he will finish up the project – something about recharging the system. We are keeping our fingers crossed that this will fix our A/C for good.

Friday, September 16, 2011

Fourth Time's a Charm

We finally were able to see Jack's face today – how amazing is technology??? This was our fourth attempt at the 3D ultrasound and he finally cooperated! We even got a little smile out of him at one point – though no picture of that. His heart rate was 145 today and he is still measuring on schedule with our due date.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

52 Books: Book 39


Last week I finished BabyWise by






Wednesday, September 14, 2011

31Weeks.5Days.


The weeks are flying by. Seriously. There are so many things I know I should be doing and preparing for. But I'm not. Stupid procrastination habit. 

My sister will periodically ask me important questions like: 
How's the nursery coming along? It isn't. 

Have you thought about what you will do for meals once the baby is here? Um, no.  Is that important?

Have you registered for baby stuff and can I get a list of guests for your baby shower? This one we actually took care of and I feel accomplished!

In all honesty, I have recently spent some thought on the nursery question... I have designed artwork for the walls! Also I think we are close to deciding on a material for the bedding and curtains – it is the Bicycle Haze pattern by Michael Miller. It is white with gray and aqua bicycles. I am waiting for a sample from Etsy to see if Daniel is ok with the aqua. If it wasn't for the aqua, we would snatch this fabric up in a heartbeat... we shall see.


I also found a rocking chair I LOVE. Unfortunately it cost almost as much as my car is worth – granted my car is about 15 years old, but still. I just can't bring myself to spend $1000 on a chair.


A friend suggested I find a similar style, used on Craigslist. I can always have it recovered. 

We also checked out Lazy Boy. A rocker-recliner definitely interests me... especially with all of the back pain I have been experiencing. The problem is that I think recliners are U.G.L.Y. They look like they belong in a man cave. Yes, they feel incredibly comfortable. I just don't know if I want to own one...

pleated poppy

What I Wore Wednesday
Shirt from Old Navy. Cargo capris from Khols. Chacos from REI.


Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Paddling from Bellefonte


Since the weather has been a little cooler, Daniel and I decided to take our canoe out on Sunday. We started the day eating breakfast on our back porch and listening to the church bells down the road chime out the song "When Peace Like a River." It was a perfect way to start our day.


After lunch we loaded up our canoe, gear and Sophie and headed over to Bellefonte. There was a time when Sophie was terrified of the water. But she got used to it. And then she didn't like her life jacket. But she got used to that too. And she wasn't fond of sitting in the canoe. But she got used to that as well. In fact, when I climbed in the canoe, she waded out in the water and tried to climb in by herself – I guess she didn't want to get left behind.


We paddled about 1.5 miles through a marshy inlet to get to the Tennessee River. It is amazing what a difference there is between a big flowing river and a little tributary. There was plenty of wildlife to see – mostly huge cranes and storks and the occasional fish flopping on the surface of the water. I thought Sophie was going to launch herself into the water on several occasions, but I think her fear of deep water kept her in check.


When we finally reached the river, Daniel decided to jump in. Then we coaxed Sophie to get in with him {i.e. we tossed her overboard} – we are all about exposing her to things she doesn't like so that she can get used to them. For the most part this works great. As long as she could float with Daniel, she was fine. However she was shaking a bit so we put her back in the boat.


When Daniel went to get back in the canoe – I mentioned multiple times how he better not flip us. Being 7 months pregnant I am in no shape to pull myself back into a canoe out on open water. He started out by pulling himself up on the left side of the boat while I shifted my weight to the right as a counter balance. We were doing good until I realized he had somehow slid all the way across the back of the canoe and we were in danger of flipping over to the right! I shifted my weight to the left and he fell back into the water {we were precariously close to flipping and I was NOT HAPPY}. Anyways, his second try was better.


We paddled a total of about 3.5 miles. It was a perfect afternoon to be out on the water.

Monday, September 12, 2011

S'mores with the Moores


A year ago we were still living in a camper at Raccoon Mountain and we invited our good friends, the Reynolds, to come visit us to indulge in "S'mores with the Moores." Both of our families were about to embark on some big changes – the Reynold's were expecting baby #3 any day and we were about to close on our house in Alabama.

Almost a year later, we finally found a weekend where the Reynolds could come down for a quick visit to see our new house. We {meaning Daniel} indulged in taking the two older kids on four wheeler rides and we finished the evening by grilling steaks.

Andrew waiting for his turn to ride our ATV with Daniel.

The best compliment ever is to have a little kid tell you how much they loved their dinner – Sadie {who just turned five} surprised everyone by eating 1.5 ears of corn as opposed to the half an ear we originally gave her. This might have had something to do with the fact that I let her role her corn in the butter dish – sorry Courtney if I started a bad habit – that's how we do it around here :)

For dessert I surprised them with Golden Graham S'mores Bars. Funny that the kids remembered coming to make s'mores with us last year {or at least trying to since last year we had some serious problems with the wood for our campfire not wanting to burn}.

 Sadie taking a turn.

We might have to continue the yearly tradition of having the Reynolds over to make s'mores in the fall.

I think the kids had fun on the four wheeler {I know Daniel did}. Initially they couldn't agree on who should go first... one wanted to wait to prolong her excitement, the other wanted to wait because he was a bit nervous. Daniel told them to play Rock, Paper, Scissors to decide. Sadie "lost" and had to go first. In the end, they both seemed to enjoy it.

 Andrew taking a turn.

Quick funny story: Right before we decided to take the four wheeler out, the golden retriever "puppy" from down the street decided to grace us with a visit. He is 60+ pounds and very playful. Unfortunately he has no concept of how big he is. Right away he knocked Sadie off of her feet and he was jumping on everyone. Normally Sophie chases this dog off {she does not like him AT ALL} but Sophie was off wandering around the woods. She did eventually come back and get into a snarling fight with him, but the golden always thinks that she is just playing. In the end, Daniel picked up this dog and put it on the back of the four wheeler and drove him back to his house down the street. It was pretty funny – too bad I didn't have the camera handy.


Thursday, September 08, 2011

52 Books: Book 38


When I was a teenager I read several Erma Bombeck books that my mom had checked out of the library. They were hysterical. Even as a teenager, the honesty and humor of everyday life was not lost on me. 

My most recent book to read was A Marriage Made in Heaven: Or Too Tired for an Affair and was full of gems on getting married, wading through the waters of being a wife and a mother, joining the workforce, becoming super mom, and growing old with your mate.

Excerpts from the book:
What Bill and I looked like and how we lived didn't seem to matter anymore. The impact was driven home one afternoon when I realized there was nothing of either of us left in the house any more. Our hobbies and interests had been regulated to cardboard boxes and stored in the attic. Our favorite books had been replaced by doctors Spock and Seuss. We didn't have toys of our own... they had been replaced by head-bumping mobiles and shin-cracking rocking horses. Even our wedding picture had been replaced by a framed naked baby.

All the wages from both our paychecks went into one account and we shared. All the daily experiences of our individual jobs were exchanged over dinner and we shared. All the child raising and crud detail – the baton twirling classes, the orthodontist appointments, car pools, shopping and errands – were mine alone.

When married couples say "We never argue," it's an incomplete sentence. "We never argue in public/in front of the children/during sex," maybe. But there is something wrong with two people who agree to never disagree.

Women generally hang on to their illusions about romance. They want desperately to believe it's a phase men go through and that one day they will appear at the door with violets out of season, a bottle of wine, and two airline tickets to Paris... That will happen on the day two squirrels sit down at our picnic table feeder and order a corn-on-the-cob daiquiri.

There are no marriage manuals. It's just as well. If there were, no one would get married. It would be like reading a book on how babies are born. They both sound worse than they are. There are no guarantees that marriage will work when you get it home. There are no exchanges or credits or returns. No life-time batteries. It's a high-risk profession.

Wednesday, September 07, 2011

30Weeks.5Days.


We are moving right along with this pregnancy thing. Last Friday I had a check up. Baby Jack is still doing well and continuing to grow. We still haven't been able to get a good picture of his face with the 3D ultrasound, so they have been letting us try to take a peak at every visit. This was my third time to get a glimpse of the little guy {in 3D}. He is still being uncooperative and won't move his hands and arms out of the way. The ultrasound tech was kind enough to print me a picture of what we could see, but told me to check in with her at our next appointment and we will try again. We paid extra to get the 3D ultrasound and we are definitely getting our money's worth.
Funny story about my last visit to the OB: When they called me back it was a nurse I had never seen before. She took my blood pressure and checked my weight – all of the usual stuff. Then she took me back to a room and gave me a gown and told me to undress and wait for my doctor. I thought this was kind of weird since this should be a routine check up where my belly gets measured and we listen to the heartbeat with the Doppler. However since I am now in my third trimester, against my better judgment, I didn't question the nurse and I changed into the gown... When my doctor came back, she looked a little confused at the fact that I was in a gown. I explained my confusion as well. Turns out the nurse is a temp and she assumed I was getting a yearly physical exam. Umm... I definitely look pregnant at this point and my chart should have said what the visit was for. Oh well, at least it was kind of funny.

I am still feeling pretty good. My back definitely aches in the evenings and recently I am having a hard time eating very much in one sitting – there is just no room. I have gained 15 pounds and we have about 9 weeks left until D day.

pleated poppy

What I Wore Wednesday:
Tank top and cardigan from Target.

Dress pants from Target {maternity section}.
Heels from Target.

Tuesday, September 06, 2011

52 Books: Books 37


I have been reading some pregnancy/parenting books lately. It seems fitting since we are expecting soon. Mostly I have been disappointed. In regards to pregnancy, mine has been an easy one and most of the symptoms that the books suggest I should experience, I have not experienced. I have some great recommendations for parenting books, but haven't felt the need to start them yet since I still have about 9 weeks to go. 

Anyways, I just finished reading And Baby Makes Three by

Monday, September 05, 2011

Labor Day Weekend


On Friday our long-time friends, the Wheeler's, came down to our place to spend part of the weekend with us. We were really excited because we haven't seen them in over 5 years. Gwynn and Chuck were our first "couple" friends to make after we were newly married and in Cookeville. We are so thankful that we have been able to keep in touch with them and now that we live a little closer, we are hoping to see them more often.


Much has changed since we left Cookeville 7 years ago... they have three kids now and we have a dog and a baby on the way. 


Originally we had planned to go camping but due to the fact that it has been HOT and I am pregnant and finding a place to camp on Labor Day was proving difficult, we decided to invite them to our place to have some fun.


Friday night they arrived late and put the kids straight to bed. In the meanwhile, we adults stayed up way past our bedtime {1:30-ish} visiting.


The next morning, after breakfast, we loaded the kids and canoe up and went to Goosepond for some paddling on the Tennessee River. Daniel and Chuck took all three kids out for a short spin. Then Abi {age two} came back to shore to hang out with Gwynn and I while we visited. The older kids and guys took a longer spin. 


Finally when they came back, Abi decided she wanted to go again. Zoe {age 6?} stayed on shore to swim while Eli {age 7?} went for another ride. The guys made it out past the dock when all of a sudden the canoe flipped over! Gwynn and I were watching and ran out on the dock to collect kids so that Daniel and Chuck could bring the canoe in. Amazingly neither kid panicked and the life jackets kept them afloat. 


The rest of the day, we hung out, grilled burgers and enjoyed each others company.


Sunday we slept in and visited some more, followed by a quick devo, then Daniel and Chuck took the kids out one at a time on our four wheeler. I think the kids {and Chuck} were in heaven :) After riding around the yard, we decided to go into town to grab lunch and then to the Scottsboro Splash Pad for the kids to play.


On the way to Scottsboro it started raining but the kids still wanted to go to the Splash Pad, so we figured it didn't matter since they would be getting wet anyways. The adults hung out in the pavilion while the kids played.


We had a fun, very kid friendly weekend. It is good for us to see that our future can definitely be one of us introducing kids to activities that we love.


Recipe for a Happy Birthday │Jack's 6th Birthday Party

Over the course of the last six years, my idea for what is a good kid's party has evolved. And by evolved, I mean relaxed. ...