Saturday, January 16, 2010

I Shouldn't be Doing This

a) blogging.

b) showing yet.

And yet, I am. (Both.)

That's right, I am showing. Not the baby, or even the uterus. It is me. I have to admit this to people who exclaim excitedly, "Wow! I can tell you're pregnant! You're really showing!"

Yes, I tell them. I am. My pregnancy will probably show in another few weeks, but practically speaking, the only time it does that nowadays is when I am on my back and a) my bladder's full or b) I'm having a contraction or c) both. If you don't believe me, see this pic from a few weeks ago. The contrast of this cantaloupe-sized belly compared with my usual "look" is undeniable. I am most definitely the one showing at this point.

At any rate, this is not bothersome to me. In fact, I love pregnancy, if only for one reason: It is a great excuse to look pregnant. There's no feeling badly that I can no longer button my pants (as of this week) and that I definitely have a pooch going on. Ahh, what an excuse pregnancy gives me to let my abdominal muscles have a sabatical. Not pregnant, I must be vigilant to not look pregnant, so as not to have anyone ask me if I am, and who has that kind of drive and muscle tone? Well, not me.

I had my first prenatal appointment on Monday, at 14 weeks. The girls and I had a relaxing time in Barb's new office. So relaxing, in fact, that I had the lowest blood-pressure reading I can remember having (not that I remember these things): ninety-something over fifty-something(Don't you love the preciseness?) This is especially surprising because at the time of the reading, I had two children on my lap, restless and demanding. I think this whole, "refusing to feel guilty" first-trimester attitude has contributed greatly to this. But I am no longer in the first trimester, so my guess is that my blood pressure will never again in this pregnancy be that low. I simply must begin my daily regimin of guilt soon. If not, I may run behind and have to pile on some double-doses.

Oh, and we got to hear the heartbeat, which was a little confirmation/reality check to me that yes, I am pregnant, and yes, it is a baby in there. (Not that I questioned this, but there's something about that super-fast heartbeat that clears up any doubts that I could just be gaining a great deal of weight in . . . my. . . uterus.) The older girls, playing on the floor, stopped, looked up and smiled as Barb said, "That's the baby!" Haley was right there, front-and-center, enthralled in what was going on. On her tippy-toes, eyes level with my belly and bright with curiosity. Her expression was priceless. So full of wonder and awe. Barb and I laughed that if we didn't know better, we'd think she understood the significance of what she was hearing. But we both knew it was simply an interest in that cool electronic device that made weird sounds.

So, that's the update. We're just surviving away here at Casa de Cowart. Keeping up on the essentials and barely anything else. It's quite enjoyable when life's this simple. I think my children would agree. Their mommy is not the same mommy from a few months ago. She's much nicer.

Okay, enough yammering. Here are some pictures.

When we got home from Christmas in Colorado, we bunked the girls' beds. We were also going to move Haley out of her/the guest room, but still finding myself not ready for the day each morning, we opted to leave her in her own room a little longer. She wakes a good hour or more after the other two, and I want to hold onto that as long as I can.

Casey and his buddy from work got this dollhouse for the girls for Christmas, and built it from the foundation up. This was in the garage a few months ago. Case is glad to have given it to the girls now so he can finally work on it in the house. Since Christmas, the house has been here, on the dining room table. It still has a LONG way to go to completion. I hope to post updates as things are done (shingles on, windows installed, electricity, etc.--he jokes this house will end up costing us as much as a full-size one, and I think I believe him).

Daddy and the girls assembling the windows. It is so sweet to me how much he puts into this for them.

Couple weeks ago. Playing play-doh.

Lately, I can let Haley play play-doh and don't have to watch her like a hawk to not eat it. Guess she's finally learned it's not yummy.

Ruby is getting better at fine-motor skills. She did so well rolling and cutting. They were the best "cookies" she's made so far.

This is new, though it may be surprising, since she's 19 months, but Haley is getting really great at feeding herself, even messy things like yogurt. She probably could have done better sooner, but we haven't really let her feed herself such things until recently. It just didn't seem worth the clean-up effort. It may be a small milestone, but it means a LOT to a mommy for baby to feed herself!

Only a couple months ago, this was going on. Claire was thrilled, but it is nice to have Haley independant.

The story behind last week's take-it-all-off haircut? A little trim in the bath by an overzealous mommy. Looked kinda okay when it was wet, but like one of her sisters had done it by morning. I had to go get it fixed (no pics of the oops--didn't even think of it). Interestingly, the one thing I did do just right was trim her bangs, but when I took her in to fix it, they trimmed her bangs much shorter than I would want--I almost stopped them.)

So, she pretty much has to have her hair "done" or wear all pink or something to look like a girl anymore. My babies always get mistaken for boys anyway, and this haircut will not help. Upon expressing this to the hairdresser, one of the other patrons looked over and said, "He's doing such a good job sitting still!" My point was made.

Problem is, Haley being the third and all, I didn't really put clips and bands in her hair much as an infant. And she is totally not used to them, and takes them out right away. We're working on it, but we'll probably have a few more comments in the meantime.

To Ruby's delight, Haley will occasionally let Ruby "baby" her. She'll let her pick her up, rock her, hold her hand. For a time, that is.
Ruby loves this big-sister role.

Recently, I started letting the girls "read" some of their school books. When we first got them, I wanted them to stay mysterious and exciting. They still are. The girls will sit on my bed for many moments, reading away!
Notice Claire's book is upside-down. She has never allowed this to affect her reading.

(And yes, those are p.j.s. And yes, it is probably about 11 a.m. They stayed in them till after naps. And I don't feel guilty about it.)

This was Friday. Actually did some "school." I got the lacing cards out again (they have always been a real frustration to the girls) and for whatever reason, today, the concept clicked with both of them. I have no idea what changed, besides not seeing them for a very long time. I told Ruby it was like dot-to-dot and sewing, and she caught right on. They were so excited, they ran to show daddy what they could do right after dinner. Got them out on their own again today.