Sunday, November 28, 2010

Look! I'm pregnant. Here's a picture of me that I took many weeks ago and posted to facebook. BUT, I finally got the picture loader to work here again, so I'm posting it for good record keeping. In this picture, I'm 32 1/2 weeks.
We had a wonderful and relaxing Thanksgiving in Virginia with the Farmer family. Mike Farmer is Tom's best friend from High School, and he moved to Alexandria, Va in late August with his wonderfully amazing wife, Kathryn and their son (4 months younger than Clark) Owen. Owen and Clark are a hoot when they get together. They can play together quietly/actively for hours, just interrupting my and Kathryn's hours long coffee break for food, water, diaper changes, and naps. They are great together. =)
Kathryn and I are becoming fast friends, I have been to Alexandria every other week for the past few months for my midwife appointments. This week I go to every week! I'm 36 weeks! Hurrah!
The wonderful thing about this pregnancy is that everytime I think I'm going into labor (regular contractions, close together) I know that it doesn't matter and I should just ignore it until it turns into a big deal. It's already happened a few times, but I was so stressed with Clark because I always thought it was time. uggh. It's nice to be slightly more relaxed about it.
This weekend Tom and I finished our big "to do" list for the birth and got supplies ready in the van including changes of clothes for us all and birth plans printed. It is very satisfying to know that that part is done.
Another momentous occassion occured this weekend. Tom cut Clark's hair for the first time. Tom has been excited about this moment since we conceived little Gumbo three whole summers ago, and it finally arrived. Clark's hair wasn't too long, just hanging over his ears a little bit, and somewhat mudflappy in the back. So, ears and mudflap got trimmed, and we saved the tiny clippings in a plastic ziplock baggie. Clark was pretty good throughout the whole thing, and Tom thinks he looks more mature now. =)
Clark is pretty fabulous, but pretty exhausting at this age. He is really picking up on our words and actions, and there is NO hiding anything from this kid. His favorite word right now is "yellow" (lel-lo) and he uses it like Sophia used to say "ga", meaning, for everything. He will point at almost any object and say, "yellow" like it is a question, a command, and a noun all in one. I almost regret teaching him the word, because it isn't a noun, a command or a question!
He also likes saying "two". He does it really cute by scrunching up his shoulders and putting up one finger by his nose as if to say, "one more please, look how cute I am, you know you want me to have two." He mostly preforms this function for asking for more vitamins in the morning, and who can blame him when they look and taste like candy (gummy bears).
He is finally broadening his eating repertoir, which is a relief. Today he ate mostly fruits, but that's a good thing in my opinion. He is starting to try more meats, including the ever detested chicken. He has had chicken, turkey and steak this week. He also likes asparagus. He will eat the cheese off of anything - pizza and quesadilla. He can say "quesadilla" and its super cute. He says it like, "sisa de ya". It is one of my favorite things for him to say along with "cocadoodle doo" which he says with his head bobbing right and left and mostly sounds like, "do do do!" it is very triumphant.
We are all tired, but going to spend the next (up to 6) weeks, resting and cuddling and hanging out. We have very few plans that we feel like implementing, and will just relax as 3 before we meet the whirlwind of 4.
We wish all of you a very blessed advent. We will feel the expectancy in a new and exciting way this year, and we look forward to the advent of our own little Joy.

Monday, November 22, 2010

Some pictures from Oct-Nov

a family picture as we wait for breakfast!

The Greenwell Men

Saturday, November 6, 2010

what we did in October and the start of Nov.

We realize we've pretty much dropped the ball on updating this lately, and we are sorry. Also, something is screwy with the picture loader on blogspot so we aren't able to post photos right now. I did include a video though. It's at the bottom if you don't feel like reading all of this update.

I was sick for the last part of Sept and early part of October, then I started feeling better and started taking care of things I had let slip during that time, as well as giving Tom a break. Tom had been running the house, taking care of Clark and letting me rest whenever he wasn't at work working. Thank God for him. =)

We had a very nice visit with Tom's parents at the end of October. They are in Israel right now, and we were their stopover point before leaving the US.

We went up to Baltimore one day and saw Ft. McHenry - the fort that got attacked and from which attach Francis Scott Key wrote the Star Spangled Banner. It was a very patriotic and moving trip. I think we were all surpised at how American it made us feel, especially after we've done so many other USA things living near DC. This is one place to go to if you ever think that America might suck, cause its definitely makes you love your country.

We hung out at the house quite a bit and relaxed, which is always the best type of vacation in my opinion! For Halloween night, Clark was a little dragon. He LOVED trick-or-treating. He loves outside, he loves taking walks, he loves knocking on doors. All of the things combined with little old ladies and our sweet neighbors bending over and offering Clark a bowl full of pretty colored thingies resulted in a JOYOUS CLARK. He grabbed candy by the handsful and went back for more - to the utter delight of our neighbors. He really liked seeing the other kids dressed up and could have stayed up all night watching them. He also could have stayed up all night from all of the sugar he ate - as we did let him taste the delicious treasures he brought home for mommy and daddy to eat. The kid loves candy, as Tom's mom said, "He's no dummy."

In other news we just found out our insurance won't cover a homebirth, so we may have our baby at the birthcenter in Alexandria, VA where Andrea GG had Sophia almost 3 years ago! We considered switching providers and having Joy in the nearby hospital, but I really don't like the idea of it. The last thing we Greenwells need is a toddler, a newborn, a tired new mommy, and a Tom with C-diff, or MRSA or something like that. He's just too delicate to be exposed to hyper-antibiotic-resistant hosptial germs. We can switch our insurance through open enrollment @ Tom's work, but it will only go into effect on January 1, 2011. The new insurance should cover a home birth, so we are praying that Joy will come late (as Clark did) and join us in 2011.

The other big thing that's going on here is the Bradley Method is undergoing sort of a coup and another organization may begin certifying teachers to teach the same philosophy of birth under a different name. The new organization seems to be very responsive to the suggestions of new teachers and willing to do things that the older organization won't in order to reach as many mothers and families as possible with the positive message of natural childbirth. I may switch to the new organization, but I'm waiting to see what will happen as things with the new organization are made more clear in the coming weeks.

For those of you who love the Bradley Method, just know that there may be two certifying organizations teaching the same/similar thing, but organized and run differently. If anything it seems the new organization will have better looking materials. They are also saying they are going to improve the quality of scientific evidence referenced in classes and with the method in order to get more of the medical community on board with the safety that is found in reducing unneccessary interventions. So it looks like good things are coming out of the new group, but again, I'm going to wait and see.

I won't be teaching again until at least March and am looking forward to getting a (or more) doula client next summer/fall. I also have an offer to teach Childbirth at a local hospital. It would be a "hospital compliance" course but they would also permit me to teach a natural childbirth class (not a full Bradley course). It would be good because they would recruit students and I would show up and teach and get paid - nice and easy.

What else? Tom went to a retreat this Saturday morning and he said he had a wonderful time. I'll be working on a youth group retreat in two weekends and am spending some evenings going to meetings to prep for it. I'm the creative coordinator or something like that. I'm in charge of music, decorations and coming up with ideas for this "reverse" video we are making (look up "reverse" videos on youtube).

Tom is going to San Diego next week and I'm going to be alllllll allllloooooonnnnnneee for 6 whole days. Please pray for me that I'm a good mommy, cause Tom has always come home at the end of the day to give me a break. Maybe I should hire a babysitter one afternoon just to have some private time! eek!

Finally, Clark continues to be the light of our life and he is super awesome. Tom is a super awesome dad, and made a fun ride for him with the laundry basket. Here is a video.