Wednesday, November 25, 2009

The Moose is Loose!

Yesterday, Shannon and I went on a date! Ok, well, actually we drove to Soldotna to buy some stuff for Thanksgiving dinner, but while we were over there, we went to The Moose is Loose, a to-die-for bakery that Shannon's been wanting to visit since we got here in September.

The Moose is Loose is closed on Sundays and Mondays, two of Shannon's days off, so it seems that we've been missing the chance to go. So...yesterday we finally went.

This bakery has the most fantastic selection of pastries, cookies, cakes, pies, and espresso drinks. They also have a large selection of moose paraphernalia. I love all the moose stuff. I have moose dice from The Moose is Loose, and I've wanted moose pajama pants for forever, but they're kind of expensive, so I've refrained from buying them before.

However, we may just break down and buy a moose onesie for Lane. I mean, who can resist a onesie that says "Moose-chevious" or a bib that says "I moose eat" on it?

Shannon was SO excited about eating here. We shared this apple-walnut-cinnamon-roll, which was the size of a...well, it was big. And delicious. No coffee for us, since they didn't have decaf, but chai tea was a good compromise. Notice the HUGE mixer in the background.

They also have lots of signs, pictures of people wearing their "The Moose is Loose" t-shirts all over the country and world, and pictures that locals have taken of moose in their yards or around town.

My personal favorite.

34 Weeks

34 weeks.

Only 6 (or 7, I suppose, if she's late) weeks to go!

Friday, November 20, 2009

A Truly Alaskan Winter

So, this past week it decided to get cold up here in Alaska. Like, -15 or so cold. Brr! I haven't lived through an Alaskan winter since 2005, and I kind of forgot how chilly it gets! The good news is that our house is toasty warm and I know lots of good recipes for cold days! Today I tried my hand at Broccoli-Cheese Soup, and I must say, for my first attempt at it, it was really, really yummy. Too bad Shannon's at work until Saturday and it'll be gone before he gets back! But I'm sure I'll make it again.

Earlier this week, Shannon and I had yet another date! We took my brother to Young Life and then went to...drum roll please...McDonald's! Well, what can I say? There's not much to do in Kenai, and we didn't want to drive to Soldotna (there's not much to do there, either, actually), because that would have cut our date 30 minutes short! So we went to McDonald's and got a couple of hot chocolates and sat and talked about the next 7-8 months and what it has in store for us.

Ok, ok, I had an ice cream too. But Shannon ate some of it!

It's hard to believe that in two months we'll have a baby, in three months we'll be in Alabama, in five months we'll be in Virginia, and then in 7-8 months we'll finally be overseas, location tbd. This little family is going through quite a crazy year!

Shannon and I also braved the cold yesterday and went out to the swimming pool again. Today my hip flexers were actually sore from all the kicking I did! It feels nice to be sore from working out and not just from being pregnant. Lately my back has been aching if I sit too long, and the stomach muscles right below my sternum are so sore. I think they're the only ones I really have left to help me get up from lying down. Oh, I can't wait to not feel like I'm too big to move myself around! I hate needing help to get up!

This is the view when driving from town (Kenai) back out to our house. Every single time I see it I think, "Isn't God beautiful?"

The view across the Kenai River. You can barely see it, but one of the canneries I worked at during summers while I was in college is over to left on the bank of the river.

Today I officially started Christmas shopping. We're not really "doing" Christmas this year with the majority of our family because we don't really need anything (other than baby stuff), and we don't want more stuff to haul overseas with us, but we're doing small stocking stuffers with my mom's family, and Shannon and I are exchanging a couple of small gifts as well. So today I bought him a gift which I'll probably give him on Saturday when he gets home from work, and I got a few stocking stuffers for other family members as well. What's on my list this year? New slippers and a phone in which the backlight works. The light in my phone has been dead for about a year now, if not longer, but other than that it works just fine so I haven't been able to justify getting a new one. would be nice to be able to read a text message or see who's calling when it's dark, so maybe a used phone wouldn't be too extravagant?

Thursday, November 12, 2009

First Snow

It finally snowed! When Shannon got up this morning (at 6:00, bless his heart :-)) to get ready for work, it had snowed overnight! It kept snowing throughout the morning, but now it's warmed up to 34° and has stopped. We got a good couple of inches, though! Anyhow, I'm quite happy that it finally snowed. Everything has been brown and dead for about 3-4 weeks now and just plain ugly...the snow helps brighten everything up and make it prettier.

Our driveway. (My brother has been practicing parallel parking between the tires).

Yesterday, Shannon and I had a little date. My mom had court in the morning and Shannon had his weekly staff meeting, so after both of those were finished Shannon and I went to a little place here called Charlotte's. Charlotte's is only open for breakfast and lunch, and they have wonderful salads, sandwiches, and soups. We were hungry and it was cold, so we thought it'd be a good time for a date.

Shannon had Black Bean Chicken Chili. The poor guy still looks cold, wearing his coat inside!

Not the best picture of me, but look at the size of that salad! Southwest Chicken Fajita favorite thing on the menu. By the way, I brought half of the salad to my mom...I didn't eat it all!

So Shannon and I had a fun date out to lunch. Later in the afternoon we went to the swimming pool (yes, it's indoors, don't worry that we're freezing to death swimming outside!). We had the place all to ourselves, other than four little kids taking a swimming lesson. We swam laps for about 30 minutes (me with a's too much work to push my extra 20 pounds through the water without one!) and then headed to the hot tub. Shannon let the jets work on his back and I soaked my legs. Then it was home for Louisiana Dirty Rice and Beans and to invent a recipe for Pumpkin Cheesecake while watching House with the family and then heading to bed. Today's my day off and I'm helping my mom get organized for the holidays. Can you believe that Thanksgiving is only two weeks away?! I think it's time to start planning the menu...

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

32 Weeks

I think my belly is just a tad bigger than usual...I'd just eaten when we took this and was stuffed!

I had a doctor's appointment on Friday and was supposed to have an ultrasound today, but the ultrasound was canceled. I was going to have it at a free clinic, but apparently they don't do ultrasounds in the last trimester, so I'll have to wait until December 1st when I go for my next "real" doctor's appointment and have one then. I'll be about 35ish weeks then, so they'd probably want to do one anyways to make sure Lane is head down and that all is well.

At my doctor's appointment nothing too eventful happened. They told me that I don't have gestational diabetes, and I almost passed out from not having food before my test (it was at 9 in the morning and I would have had to have eaten breakfast at like 5:45. I decided I didn't want to get up that early). I also asked my doctor about some pain I had had a couple of days previously. My stomach had been hurting so I went through all the things I thought it could be (hunger, thirst, gas, etc) and did what I could to try to fix them (eat, drink some water, etc). When my stomach still wasn't feeling better we were preparing to head to the ER, when I stood up and suddenly I felt fine. It was so strange, but I think that Lane changed positions. She had been side-to-side, and I think she moved head-down. My stomach shape changed, I've felt kicks in new places, and the doctor said that it is common for it to be quite painful when babies turn. So all is well with Lane as far as the doctor's visit is concerned.

However, on Sunday, my stomach started hurting again. So we decided "better safe than sorry" and headed to the ER. Turns out that I was having small, irregular contractions for 10-20 seconds about every minute. They monitored me for awhile, took a test to see if I was in pre-labor (I'm not), and told me I could go home. If it happens again and the pain is worse then I'm supposed to call and/or go back in, but they said that it could be normal for my pregnancy. So, until it happens again we're just going to pray that it doesn't. :-)

I think we finally decided on her full name, but we'll just wait a bit to disclose that, just in case we change our minds. But "Lane" is going to be her middle name (for sure) and we're going to call her by it. I've gained a total of 20 pounds this pregnancy, so I'm glad to know that I've been eating enough to gain appropriately but not too much. I can eat whatever I want to over the holidays and still probably make it under the 30-pound mark. :-) Today my maternity bathing suit got its second use. We're trying to go out to the pool every week or so. It's a good workout for me (kicking around that extra 20 pounds is hard!), and Shannon likes the hot tub. I like the hot tub too, but can only sit on the top step and let my legs and butt get wet. So sad. But better safe than sorry!

Lane has found my ribs and I now feel lots of movement in that area, more on my right side than the left, but enough on the left for me to believe that she's more upside-down now than before. All is well and I don't think I have anything to complain about as far as pregnancies goes. I'm starting to get more uncomfortable but not too terribly bad. We'll see how I feel in another month, though!

Well, that's about it (ha!) for pregnancy updates! More to come soon, but I've been baking a lot...check the recipe blog for new recipes!