Thursday, December 25, 2008

Merry Christmas from the three of us!!

Lots of love, Alison, Brandyn and Baby C!!

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Definiately growing an athlete (like any of you are surprised)!

Basketball center, soccer goalie, volleyball spiker... I'm not sure who he'll turn out to be... but he sure seems to be practicing his moves in my belly!

This morning I told Brandyn... "Put your hand here... he's going crazy!" And Brandyn responded "Woah... that is crazy! And wow... what was that... that wasn't a kick... I felt him move across my hand!"

Yeah, I know... cool huh. This little guy is keepin' me entertained all day long! And making his Daddy proud already with his obvious natural talent of athletic skills!!

Friday, December 12, 2008

The Phaaaaantom of the Opera is there... inside my mind!!!

Last Sunday Brandyn and I went with 5 other couples to see "Phantom of the Opera" at the Orpheum Theater in San Francisco. While I've been lucky enough to see The Phantom about 4 or 5 times (thanks Mom and Dad and Aunt Ellen too!)... the was Brandyn's first time! We both enjoyed the show very much!!

Monday, December 8, 2008

Smiles from strangers...

Smiles from strangers... is something you're VERY used to is you grew up in a community of 1,500 people. When you walk through town and come across another person... even someone you don't know... they smile at you when you walk by... and you smile back. Its part of the small town charm.

In San Francisco and the Bay Area... its not quiet the same. The people here tend to be a little bit more reserved with giving out smiles to strangers. It was something that took me a long time to get used to when I first moved here. I even made a few mistakes of smiling nicely at homeless people... who immediately interpreted that as a sign that I wanted to give them money. (Ah, now I see why SFers don't just pass out smiles at random!).

So imagine my surprise when late last week... I found myself the receipt of several random stranger smiles. It was so nice, warm and pleasant... I admit, I was a little taken a back. After the third person smiled at me (on the same day, mind you)... it occurred to me that maybe they were smiling at the sight of my baby belly! A sight/topic that tends to make people happy... be reminded of miracles and innocence.

Maybe I give the belly too much credit... maybe I just had toilet paper stuck to my shoe!!

Well... whatever the reason was... its was a pleasant experience and surprise! Sometimes its the little things.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Thoughts on being a parent (from other parents)...

Everyone says that you'll get TONS (too much) advice on parenting and being a parent when you're pregnant... but for me... that hasn't really happened yet. But last night... at a cocktail holiday party (boy, those just aren't as fun when you're not drinking)... I got two good ones.

A friend/work-related colleague told me this...

"Its like you've been watching life through a 17 inch black and white TV... and then you upgrade to a 50 inch high definition color TV... its like seeing the world like you've never seen before."

And for her second piece... she said... "People always tell me I look at parenting likes its all rainbows and puppy dogs... so I'll balance it with this... if at some point your are struggling with your child's stage of life (like the sleepless new born nights... to the crazy toddler days)... just remember... it comes and goes so quickly. A new stage will be there so soon."

Thanks Jillion... those were two of the sweetest words of parenting wisdom I've heard yet!

Saturday, November 29, 2008

A very thankful Thanksgiving!!

Brandyn and I had a very nice Thanksgiving holiday. For the first time... in a long time... we didn't have to travel. Brandyn's sister Jennifer hosted Thanksgiving at her house (just down the street from ours). Brandyn's family came up from Fresno to join us... so it was a lot of fun with our niece and nephews all together.

And... of course... Baby C! For whom we are eternally grateful this Thanksgiving. We were able to get a sneak peak at our little guy... through a private 3D ultrasound vendor Prenatal Peek. Both Grandma's to-be joined us for the big viewing. Of course, as usual, Baby C was not being super cooperative. He was playing shy and held his hands in front of his cute little face almost the whole time. But with a little maneuvering from me... and a lot of poking from the technician... we were able to get a few good shots of his face!

It was a very fun afternoon for all... including both grandpas - who patiently waited back at the house (watching football, of course!)... and were able to get in on the action by watching the 30 min. DVD we were sent home with.
A very thankful Thanksgiving indeed!!

Monday, November 24, 2008

Overwhelmed by the all "baby gear" choices...

Its time to get started on a list of items we'll need for the baby. Registry time! (And we thought picking out China was hard!) Wow. So many choices... so many brands... so many online check lists telling me I WILL NEED this and that.

What is a girl to do when she feels over whelmed in life... why turn to her family and friends for advice!! So... to all my new parent friends (and those who've been there... done that!)... tell me... what were/are your baby Must Haves!!

Thursday, November 20, 2008

No updates... just pics!

Currently 23 (and some) weeks.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Random thoughts...

I want to take a nap. I know... its only noon, but just working my normal 7.5 hour day is really wearing me out. I'm only 22 weeks pregnant right now... what will I do at 30... or 36!!! The 1 hour commute each way... plus work... is leaving me exhausted. I could TOTALLY take a nap in my office right now... humm... maybe I will. ;)

My back hurts. I know, the complaint of every pregnant women. But again, aren't those women like 9 months pregnant... with HUGE bellys!! I'm only 6 months (sorta)... and my belly is little. And yet... its starting to get uncomfortable to sleep (even with the glorious Snoggle pillow). I've been sitting at my desk since around 8:30... and I've gotten up about three times... I'm now slouched over "Ed Bundy Style"... to help ease the pressure off my back. I may need to start working and standing at my desk - think that will work?

And at the risk of TMI (after all... my brother does read this on occasion)... apparently all my bras are too small. I put on a bigger one today... and I feel like its cutting off my circulation across my chest! Maybe I should run to Victoria's Secret during lunch!

Oooo, but to end on a high note... I'm completing my Ed Bundy look with my hand on my belly (no, not in my pants)... 'cause I can feel Baby C moving all around right now!!! And occasionally on the outside too!! :)

Monday, November 10, 2008

"Tagged" in the world of bloggers...

So... guess I'm officially part of the "World of Bloggers"... I've been "tagged." A game to make blogging a little more interesting. Thanks Stephanie!

Seven weird facts about me... this could take all day...

1) When I'm driving... I use my turn signal ALL the time... its so much of a habit... that I often find myself using it to turn into the driveway!! ;)

2) I don't like to mix fruit with my chocolate. Strawberries and raspberries are delicious... but chocolate cake with a raspberry layer... umm... no... I'm a purist.

3) I'm a podcast addict. I find great thrill is discovering new *free* downloadable podcasts for my iPod. I'm currently listening to This American Life, The Moth, RadioLab, and Pregtastic.

4) I have Restless Leg Syndrome. While Brandyn used to say I was making up the actual condition... its real... look it up! Sometimes in the evening (not every night)... my legs get really antsy... I can't help but want to move them. (It makes it really difficult for the cats to try and lay on my lap!!)

5) I was born and raised in a town with a population of 350 - people, period. When Journey sings "She's just a small town girl..."... its always makes me nostalgic.

6) My husband and I BOTH took Scouting to the top level. Brandyn is an Eagle Scout and I earned my Gold Award.

7) I have a baby growing inside of me! (Come on... that is weird!) :)

And to tag more people... I hope they LIKE being tagged!! If not... sorry. ;)

1) Michelle Z.
2) Catriona
3) Jenique (what happens when the person you tag hasn't done a blog entry in MONTHS... will they respond!?!)
4) Lindsy
5) Danae, Chris & Baby Sophie
6) Amy ('Cause she needs an excuse to update!)
7) Zoe

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Drop the *maybe*... we're for SURE a BOY!!!

Thanks to uncooperative Baby C - we were able to go back for a 2nd ultrasound today - in order to gets pics of the spin (baby wasn't laying right the first time). They had the Dr. check out the pics. while we were still there... so we wouldn't have to come back a thrid time.

Everything looks great.

And also very excitingly... the Tech confirmed... DEFINATELY a boy!! She ever took a pic of his parts and typed on the screen "I'm a boy" and printed a copy for us! It was a great appt... and DH and I are glowing!

More pics to come soon, but proud Daddy took them with him to a 2-day conference!

Monday, October 27, 2008

Who says pregant women can't party!!!

Michelle and I proved them wrong this weekend!! After a fun filled day of a walking art gallery tour through SF... Michelle and I (Brandyn, Matt and Amy & Matt too)... partied like RockStars WELL into the early morning!!

This was, of course, at the in famous Ensor Halloween party! This year's theme was "Under the Sea." You would NOT believe the amount of time and energy Marjorie and Jeremy put into the theme and decorations!

Here are a few pics.

Space Balls - The Movie. Brandyn is BARF The Mog... and I'm Princess Vespa.

The Hosts. Marjorie the beautiful Mermaid... and Jeremy the Scuba instructor.

The rest of the Gang. Matt & Amy (Speed Racer and Rosie the Riveter), Matt & Michelle (Bleeker and Juno), and Me and Brandyn (Princess Vepsa and Barf the Mog).

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Updates & Fashion Show

Baby C is moving into 19 weeks now. He (we think) is getting bigger and stronger and I can feel it! Before I found myself questioning "is that the baby moving"... now... I know it is! Before long... we'll be able to feel him from the outside too!

My belly continues to grow, slowly, but surly... still not too noticeable to the outside world... well... unless I wear a belly flattering shirt that is. Check out the difference in these two pics. I took them literally mins. apart.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

First baby-related purchase!

As is the typical trend right now... Brandyn and I wanted to get a rocker/gilder to hold/feed the baby in. However... with the small size of our house... we thought the gilder would be better suited in our living room - rather than the baby's room. So we set off on a mission to find a piece of furniture that to replace, as my Mom fondly referred to it - the "Black Monster," aka this very ugly pleather chair we had that was "free" with our TV... like 6 years ago.

Trying to find a gilder chair... that looks more appropriate for a living room than a baby room... on a budget... is a mighty hard task! So after a LOT of internet searching, a trip to Babies R Us and Lazy Boy Furniture... we ended up with this. A GREAT mission style piece that I found on It was an "over stocked" item from a warehouse sale. Priced at less than half of the original price!! What a score!!

I'm sure that Baby C loves it already!! We rocked/gilded together last night!!

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Baby C *might* be a boy... well... maybe...

Don't paint the walls blue... but... we *might* be having a boy!! Yesterday Brandyn and I went to our "big" ultrasound appointment where they spent about 30 min with the ultrasound machine scanning around to check out Baby C... take pictures of his spine, heart, head, limbs, etc. Baby C wasn't been super cooperative (Brandyn says "Yup, he's a Coleman") he was face down the entire time, and wouldn't move despite the technicians poking and prodding at my belly. All in all - everything looked GREAT!!

After all the measurements had been taken, the technician asked if we wanted to know the sex - we said we did. But unfortunately, Baby C had his legs crossed... and was being just as stubborn for that portion of the photo opt as he was for the rest. The tech gave us a "I *think* its a boy, but I can't be certain" answer. He pointed to between the legs and said "That there is either the penis... or the umbilical cord." (Well...!) Then he did some more moving around and said with mild confidence that he felt the baby was a boy.

Guess that's what we get for being so indecisive about whether or not we even wanted to find out the sex... Baby C answered that question for us... still unsure... what a tease!!

Either way... our Baby Boy *maybe* is looking great! See for yourself!

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Hello Baby!

Yes, I feel you now! And I felt you in the middle of the night last night! Just make sure you show you yourself at our ultrasound next week... your daddy may not want to see "what you're made of" - but *I* do!!! Taken this morning! 17 weeks and 3 days.

Friday, October 3, 2008

Ummmm... was that what I THINK it was!?!

As I pass 15 and 16 weeks of pregnancy, the books are saying "Your baby is moving around a lot now, you should begin to feel him/her at anytime." And so... I've been stalking my belly for the last few days... asking my friends to describe the feeling in detail... and waiting. I've laid on my back... concentrating oh so hard on feeling that baby move... only to feel my heart beat pumping away - a little distracting!

Then... a few days ago... I was sitting at the computer and crossed my legs... blooop! "What was that!?! That didn't feel 'normal.' Let's try that again." *uncross legs, cross them again* Nothing. The next morning while Brandyn was getting ready for work... I manipulated my body in all kinds of directions... and FINALLY felt the feeling again. Its like that feeling you get when you're on a rollercoater ride... the flip-flop of your stomach... but... I was FIRMLY planted on the ground... no amsument park in sight!

Yesterday I felt the baby again about 3 times. I told Brandyn that I think I found a way to make the baby move so that I can feel it... his response "Well don't POKE it!!" Don't worry Brandyn... I'm not hurting the little guy... just enjoying the feeling of knowing he/she is there.

16 weeks and 4 days.

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

The two week count down...

Dr. appts., Dr. appts., and MORE Dr. appts. Sure seems like there's a lot of them!

I/we had another check-up at the OB's yesterday - pretty uneventful. They took some measurements (said I'm all on track) and listened to the heart beat (beating beautifully)... all was "text book" as the NP commented.

Now... next appt. is exactly two weeks from today... and its a BIG one. Its the ultrasound to check out the baby in detail... AND... if we want... to find out the sex. However, we have not yet decided if that's an option we want. We're are in a debate. Brandyn wants to keep the sex a surprise... and I want to find out!!!

Brandyn REALLY wants the excitement of the baby being born and calling family/friends to say "Its a ...." Me... I just wanna know... 'cause I want to talk to the baby... bond with him/her more, etc. Oh... and buying clothes/decorating would be more fun too!

So... I put it out to you... our friends and family... do YOU want to know the sex of Baby C before he/she arrives in the world... or wait and let it be a surprise!

*Disclaimer: Your vote may or may not effect the outcome of our decision. (Yes, I work with lawyers!).

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Congratulations Derek & Jen!

Last Sunday we attended the fabulous wedding of our good friends Derek and Jen. Derek has been Brandyn's roommate, basketball teammate, and grooms man in our wedding. Jen, while living in Japan for a lot of the time we've known her, is part of the Osteen family who runs the Pumpkin Farm in Clayton. Their wedding was held on a beautiful Sunday afternoon at a breath-taking winery in Livermore. The ceremony was touching, the food and drink (minus the wine for me!) were delicious and the friends abundant!

It was also a great opportunity for us to tell several of our friends who didn't yet know that we're expecting.

Monday, September 22, 2008

Pregnancy and Public Transportation...

For most women... the first few months of pregnancy are the worst. You feel like crap - nauseated, exhausted, dizzy, etc. That would be the time when you need an open seat on public transportation the most!! Unfortunately - people don't give up their seats for tired/queasy looking women... only enormously pregnant women with heavy bellies!

Lucky for me, my commute on BART these last couple of months have been pretty uneventful. I've been feeling pretty great pregnancy-symptom-wise (no morning sickness, etc) just pretty exhausted by the end of the day. I almost always get a seat on BART in the morning (if I don't - I just wait for the next train). And on the way home - I ride the train backwards, deeper in to SF - so that I can on a less crowded train and find a seat. But BART has been so crowded lately (with the higher gas prices) that some people who NEED a seat aren't getting one.

And so it was that I found myself last week... siting comfortably in my seat... settling in for my 40 min ride... when a VERY pregnant women got on the train. I waited... waited... waited... no one stood up to give her their seat. And so... *I* - a pregnant women myself - stood to give up and gave my seat to someone who needed it just a little bit more. I found it a very humorous and ironic moment.

I hope Karma is good to me as the months progress... my belly grows larger... and BART gets more crowed.

Friday, September 19, 2008

It pays to have friends...

Especially ones who have been there, done that!! Last week Catriona sent me a box of maternity clothes!! This week Sandra dropped off several bags of clothes... and this weekend Michelle P. is bring me clothes that her sister is passing along!! Wow- do I feel lucky!! Wait 'til you SEE the fashions I'm sporting!!! (The shirt below is one of the pieces Catriona sent!!)

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Ha!! I think this was directed at me!!

Just got an e-mail in my in box from I've signed up for a newsletter that tells me each week how the baby is developing, how big the baby is, how I should be feeling, what I should expect, etc. Today's BabyCenter e-mail had the following comic in it... do you think it was specifically directed at me!?! ;)

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

A WHOLE NEW meaning to the phrase "does this make me look pregnant?"

In normal, everyday life, women ask their husbands "Honey, does this shirt make me look pregnant?" hoping that they will respond "Of course not!"

But when you're newly pregnant and trying to sort out the fine line between your growing stomach looking, well, just plain bigger... and actually looking like a pregnant belly... the answer your looking for now is "Why yes honey, what a cute pregnant belly!" ;)

Brandyn has been answering this question a lot lately!!

So.... does this shirt make me look pregnant!?! :)

14 weeks exactly.

P.S. My belly at the end of the day... looks much more "interesting" and "bloated" that it does at the beginning of the day!!

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

The excitment spreads to Aunt Katie & Uncle Ryan!!

On Sunday Katie (my sister-in-law, my brother Ryan's wife) came by to pick up concert tickets that I snagged for her. But Katie didn't arrive empty handed. Oh no. Soon-to-be-Aunt Katie arrived with ARMS FULL of books to get B and I ready for Baby C...


Thank you Katie for your extreme thoughtfulness (and Ryan too!). We both were so excited to have Baby Items in OUR house!! :)

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Coming out... well... maybe just a *little*

Its a secret no longer. B and I will are expecting our first child early next year!! March 15 or so!

We're super excited, of course! So, I've decided to start a blog so that I can share all the excitement with family and friends. I hope that reading this will be an entertaining look at our adventure. So, to start us off, a few pics.

Baby C making his/her photo debut at our ultrasound on 8/29. Head is on the left. Not a super clear pic... but Baby C was waving to us and everything! A very fun moment.

And... my very *little*, but definiately growing belly!