Monday, December 29, 2008


One of the things I really like about writing this blog is that I can glance back and read about what I was thinking, doing, or eating on a random day or reflect on what I was doing last year at this time. Otherwise, for me, life just kind of gets all jumbled up and even the things I really want to remember get lost in the haze and pattern of everyday life and the details disappear. It's good to have the reminder and makes me think I should do a better job of keeping the blog updated, if not for the 10 of you who regularly check in, but for me in five years.

With that in mind, let's take a look back at 2008, before we look ahead to 2009:

In January, I traveled to Seattle for work where I seriously fell for the Pike Place Market. Upon returning home, Chris and I decided to decorate our bedroom with new grown-up furniture (that all matches!) and soothing painting colors. Chris refinished the original hardwood floors and the room came together to create a soothing oasis (if only laundry would put itself away).

February featured lots of cozy nights at home and an expansion of my yoga practice. I would continue to teach a yoga class through May, but this was the time I really hit my stride. The class I planned for Valentine's Day was one of my favorites.

March brought a freak snowstorm that blanketed the city and found us drinking way too much wine. Good times there.

In May we celebrated our 6 month wedding anniversary and at some point in June we got pregnant. I then slept through most of July and August. I briefly woke up for a few days in August to take a family trip with Chris, my parents and my brothers to New York City. We had a great time exploring the city and being together. It was special to attend a Yankees game with my Dad and to meet my brother Joe's now wife. This was also the trip where the Olive earned the nickname Olive.

All the excitement of the trip wore me out, so I continued to sleep through most of September. This, unfortunately, had a poor effect on our garden because we harvested almost nothing out of this year. We might have picked a few tomatoes, but sadly everything else rotted or was taken over by weeds.

By October, I was more awake and ready for wedding mania. This was a good time to see old friends and family. Plus, these wedding dates were so close to our own first year wedding anniversary that it was very meaningful to sit in the congregations and watch others take their vows. October also marked feeling the Olive move for the first time and beginning to get ready for the arrival by purchasing nursery furniture.

In between all of the baby excitement during the Autumn months, I taught a class at the local community college. This was a good experience for me, but it was surely a learning one and if I did it again I would be better next time.

Along with the rest of the country, I was eagerly awaiting election results on November 4 and I was so happy to know that change would be coming to the White House. Throughout November we watched my belly get bigger until at this point in December, I can't even see my toes.

Christmas 2008 was a relaxing affair full of good food and fun times spent with close family. Really that might of been the theme for 2008: family. I will look back on this year as one full of almost weekly Sunday dinners spent laughing around the table. It will also be remembered as the year Chris and I started our journey as a family of our own. I can't think of anything better to frame the year around than love of a family.

Monday, December 15, 2008

And the Stockings Were Hung by the Chimney With Care...

After skipping 2007, Chris and I have fully embraced decorating for Christmas this year. I even talked him into a real tree, despite his fire safety concerns. The tree is adorable in a not too big, not too little way. It's a local Frasier Fir, and is Prada approved for both taste and smell.

We also decked out the mantle. I can't wait to see what Santa brings for the stockings! They are always my favorite part of Christmas gifts. Good things really do come in small packages.

The Olive is, of course, represented with a specially selected ornament. I know the shamrock snowman will be a favorite each year as we decorate a tree, but this year it is the only ornament not like the others on the tree. I love it!

Decorating has been a lot of fun this year. Our front room is so cheery and bright. It just makes me want to bake and start that shopping list, so I can spend time in my living room with a mug of warm cider, brightly wrapped gifts and fresh cookies.

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Body Issues

I have friends who worry out loud about the changes pregnancy will have on their bodies. Before getting pregnant this just wasn't a worry to me. I've never been small and have always had curves, so I didn't think adding on a few pounds would mess with my head too much. After all, the weight gain and the physical changes are for the purpose of nurturing a new life and if pregnancy teaches you anything, it teaches you not to be selfish.
So it's been surprising to me these last few months, to find that gaining 20 pounds in 6 months really has messed with my head. Having the full baby belly is very cool and life-affirming, but having the full baby thighs, butt and arms is a little less miraculous. I really didn't think I would react this way to the weight gain, but it's been challenging to stop 15 years of worrying about the number on the scale.

As always, my old friend yoga really helps me get through the days I just feel huge. Breathing, looking inward and focusing on what my can do is a reminder that it's about more than physical and superficial changes to the body. And if I get too wrapped up in my head, a gentle kick has the power to remind me that the weight gain just doesn't matter.

Saturday, December 6, 2008


As we move steadily into December, I've started the nesting process. To me this means making a batch of soup each weekend. Minestrone, chicken or turkey noodle and black bean have all been recent favorites. I've also been baking quite a bit. Maybe it's the time of year, or maybe because I love how my kitchen smells while whipping up a batch of cookies or quick bread. The smells of soup and baking just seem like home.

Chris and I have been trying hard to create a home since we've settled into this house, but that sense of home is even more important that it's not just for us anymore. We've been trying to keep things neater and clean up areas that haven't been organized in years. On some days, when the hormones are just right, a junk drawer or closet doesn't stand a chance around me. I've purged, organized and labeled what feels like war zones of closets and cabinets. I still have more to do and wish I had more time and energy to do it.

My goal is to have the house baby-ready by Christmas. That way, we'll be all ready in case anybody shows up early (though God forbid, that early) and I can just try to enjoy the third trimester. Chris has been working hard painting and rewiring the nursery. We chose a beautiful buttery yellow paint with white trim for the room. It's classic and soothing. I can't wait to spend time with the Olive in that room. It will be such a cozy space for him to be welcomed into our nest.