Connor's Counter


Friday, July 31, 2009

8 lbs 3 oz

No, that's not a birth weight, that is his estimated weight at 36 weeks. He gained ~2.5 lbs in the previous 4 weeks, and with 4 weeks left to go, this is going to be a big baby! Maybe 10.5 lbs! good thing I have big bones (never thought I'd hear myself say that!)

Can't wait to meet him!

"Every child begins the world again."
Henry David Thoreau

Sunday, July 26, 2009


Last week was really fun since we had family in town to visit. Wendel and Ashley came in for the day on Saturday from Seattle for the babyshower/birthday celebration (see previous post). Paul and Karen came into town as well from Idaho for the weekend. Paul really wanted to see the progress we're making in Washington (on "our house" -- about time for an update!), so we drove up to Brinnon on Sunday. We stopped for a picnic lunch at Potlach State Park, right on the Hood Canal. (Paul is reading the information sign below). It's just a basic park, but easy to be beautiful when it's on the Hood Canal. :)

Karen and I are chowing down on sandwiches and carrots. I'm a health-food junkie, so I don't make very fun picnics.... Luckily, I think Ron brought Doritos.
Ron and his parents enjoying the afternoon....

When we got to Brinnon, we went inside. Paul took the camera and captured some of the different features of the apartment above the garage. This is the view from upstairs, 3rd floor -- just imagine the balcony being finished... But the view is always fantastic. Paul was too nervous to get any closer, so you can see the sliders in front. (I guess Paul is afraid of heights? must be why he does flooring instead of roofing....)

Despite the lack of finishing touches, Karen still found a place to relax. This is in the bedroom, next to one of the bench-seat windows.
The whole time we were there, Paul sported this "perma-grin". It started in the Gazebo, and just spread from there. I think he had a good time, even if it was only for a day.

And here is the current status of our house (from the road side). Recent additions were: The garage doors and trim, Front entry door and keypad lock (accessible from the internet if we ever get a connection), foundation waterproofing and drainboard (ready for backfill). Near future plans: put up siding and get the thing ready for winter -- hopefully before the baby comes. It almost looks like a house! Even though it's only a garage....

Since we haven't back-filled the front of the garage yet, it is a bit difficult (and scary!) to get from the road to the garage. You can see Karen held on to Paul as he crossed, since we don't have handrails on the plank anymore (no where to really nail the rails, since we now have trim on the garage and entry door). Hopefully we won't need the plank much longer.... (I don't like crossing it either).

And then, when we first enter or last leave, Ron does this little acrobat routine to get in and out of the garage.
Upon leaving, Ron locks up the garage door from the inside. He then steps out of the front entry door, making sure it's locked....

Then he traverses the chasm to the plank and closes the entry door....

He regains his balance and makes sure the door closes....

Then he confidently walks back to the road. (Like I said, hopefully we won't need this plank much longer... :). I love Ron! (Do you see his sympathy belly below? So cute!)

We drove back Sunday night, which was actually alot easier than I anticipated, even with me being pregnant. I think Paul and Karen are glad we went, and probably want to spend more time there than we had.... and, of course, Ron loves showing it off. He does have a bunch of blood, sweat and tears in it, after all.
Just for fun, I digitally created a rendering of what it will look like when it's complete. not too shabby! :)
"The most important work you and I will ever do will be within the walls of our own homes."
-Harold B. Lee

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

baby shower!!!!


Is one of my very good friends. (Karina and me above). She has been so excited for me since she found out we were expecting. She has been there to support me every step of the way. She hooked me up with a couple of seasonal consignment sales where I got alot of the big stuff for a really good deal. She also hooked me up with some of her old baby stuff (and some of her friends old baby stuff) so I am READY (almost). :) Immediately upon finding out about the pregnancy, she called dibs on throwing a shower for me, and this past weekend the long-awaited event arrived. (Baby shower, that is). It happened to fall on my birthday, which is also my anniversary (Ron & I have been married seven years now! I'm not telling how old I am...). It was such a great party! (Thankyou Karina!!)

Many people have been asking for a profile of the belly, so here it is, all 8 months of gestation:

Yes, that is all tummy, and as you can see, I'm also wearing my "mom-to-be" badge of honor. :) He is going to be a very big baby.... (We'll estimate size again this coming Monday to see how big he's getting. )

Karina got this adorable cake from Costco. We all love Costco; the only down side is the HUGE portions. Which is good if you're stocking up your food supply, but I don't think I've ever been to an occasion where we've eaten the whole cake from Costco. (This time, we ate half. The other half I took to work and shared with everyone there. They definitely appreciated it.)

And, Karina had lots of yummy food. She asked me what I wanted and I said, "just fruit". I think all of the other guests were glad that she supplemented with other yummy treats besides just fruit.

I had so many friends there, it was really fun to celebrate with everyone. Below, going clockwise, is Karina, Julie (helping out!), Ashley, and Karen.

Below: Denice and Monica (sisters!) with Karen in the background.

Below: Megan and Maggie (Sisters!)

L-R: Becky, Amy, me. We were roommates back in the single days, and have lots of pictures that look like this, so I wanted an updated one. :)

Robin and Amy prepping for the gift Bingo game. (Amy also has her timer out because she was timing the diaper game... see below).

Karina had us play this fun game where you have to diaper the baby with your eyes closed. Those who were already moms and had practice had to do it with one hand. Those without children could use two hands. Elizabeth (below) was a very serious contender. :)

Julie had a few more troubles. She actually wrapped the baby's head in the diaper instead of the other way around.... :)

Roxanne wanted to try one-handed because she has lots of nieces and nephews and has had lots of practice!

After everyone tried, the winner was Ashley! Of course, she had the benefit of two hands...

The gifts were really great, too. I have lots of thank you's to send out which I will hopefully do in the next week. I was so happy to share the day with so many friends.

When we got home from the shower, the family all had cheesecake and went out to a movie for our birthdays. Ashley's birthday (My sister-in-law) is July 16, Paul's birthday (Ron's dad) is July 17, and my birthday is July 18. What a great coincidence that we were all there! Unfortunately Aaron (Ron's brother) and Megan (his wife) couldn't go due to no babysitter... Someday that will be a problem for me and Ron as well. We went to see Harry Potter, of course. Except Wendel and Ashley because Wendel wanted to see the transformers movie. (I personally have no desire to see that one...)

What a perfect, fun day!

"A baby is a blank cheque made payable to the human race."
-Barbara Christine Seifert

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Fun Times! (Con't)

OK, after the floats passed and we could safely walk to our car, We were trying to think of what else to do. Dad suggested that there was a submarine on the other side of the river and we should go see that, since he'd rather see a sub anyway. I said "I don't think we can tour it". But then I suggested that we should go to the OMSI (Oregon Museum of Science and Industry) because we all know how much dad likes a good museum. Plus they had a CSI exhibit there (Crime Scene Investigation). I thought that might be kind of interesting... So off we went looking for the OMSI. I knew it was just on the other side of the river, but not exactly sure where, so I called Ron at work and he gave me vague directions. Well, we all know how directionally challenged I am, and we ended up WAY lost. We were all the way in Milwaukie, which is ~20 minutes away. Yes, I knew we were going the wrong way, but once you get on McLoughlin Blvd, there's no turning back... Until Milwaukie. So then I had to call Ron back and get step-by-step instructions from John, a guy he works with, 'cause Ron was taking a bathroom break... anyway, it was quite embarassing.

BUT, when we finally made it to OMSI, we discovered that you could, indeed, tour the submarine. It is called the USS Blueback, and it's claim to fame is that it was in "Hunt for Red October" (starring Sean Connery, etc). However, as the tour guide explained, it was only featured in very short clips because when they tried to shoot inside the vessel, it was just too small to fit the cameras AND the people... (You'll see in the pictures comingup).

This first shot is from the outside. And, of course, you can see Oregon's cloudy skies in the background...

Mom & Dad standing outside, with dad at his usual spot (i.e. at the front of the class, building an instant friendship with the tour guide so he could ask lots of questions!)

Once you get inside, the doors that take you from one section to the other are VERY tiny. This is what we had to crawl through. I guess it's so they can easily seal off a section if it starts to flood.

But, as you can see, the door was not made for old people, or pregnant people for that matter.... Let's just say we all were humbled by crawling through those doors.

This is mom & dad in the torpedo bay. Torpedos are huge!

Their entertainment rack was actually state-of-the-art for the time. I guess the engineers who worked in submarines were the best of the best, so they got alot of perks (including the best chefs and an ice-cream machine).

The eating galley was as tight as everything else. The tour guide stuck me in the far corner since he didn't think I could fit anywhere else... :(.

And, of course, dad had to try the hot bunks for himself. They're called "hot bunks" because there aren't actually enough beds for everyone. So, if you're one of the peons, you share a bed on a rotational shift with someone else. Which usually meant that the bed was still warm when you got in. (ew!)

You can see how small the beds were and how little privacy you had:

It was kind of cool to look out of the parascope. You could see all of portland. And, actually, we got to see the dragon races that were going on at the time (during the Rose Festival, you know).

So, we ended up having a whirlwind tour of the Rose Festival (we even stood in line for an hour before we gave up on the navy ships). On the way back over the river, one of the bridges were going up to let a boat pass. I sarcastically said, shall we take that bridge and get stuck for a while? :) and, to my surprise, dad said, Yeah!! Let's go see it go up and down. So, I flipped a quick u-turn and we went and sat on the bridge while dad watched it go up and down. We could see the waterfront from our vantage point, so dad pointed out one of the "new" rides to mom. It was her first exposure to the human slingshot. (If you've never heard of this ride, It's where you sit in a seat that is attached to huge elastic ropes which are attached to the top of ~100 foot poles. You sit down in a comfy seat and then you get propelled 100+ feet in the air. Not something I want to try). Mom didn't want to try it either.... scary.

Monday, I had to go to work, so mom & dad hung out at the house with Ron all day. Ron decided to surprise us and take us on a picnic dinner at the coast. They picked me up after work and we drove to Seaside, where you can actually drive the car on the beach. We worked up our apetite by taking a short stroll (~.1 miles) to the viewing deck.

Mom & Dad were certain that the trail was MUCH longer than .1 miles, and the signs must be wrong! So Ron & I went back for the car by ourselves so that mom & dad could take a shortcut to the beach. :)

then we found a big log that we could sit on and munched on melons, cheese & meat & crackers and a whole bunch of other food that Ron brought. You would think we were feeding an army with as much food as we had. But, better too much food than not enough!

After dinner, we drove further down the beach to see the Peter Iredale shipwreck on the shore. It's interesting that sometimes the boat is more buried than other times. It had quite a bit above the sand this time around, so we got some good pictures. Mom wanted to send this first one out as a postcard to everyone saying, "We survived the cruise!" Funny, mom!

and here's an obligatory shot of me and Ron. In my coat, I don't even look pregnant! but if you look at my feet, I'm wearing flip-flops because nothing else fits my big fat swollen feet!

Ron took some nice shots. Here's a good one of the sunset.

Overall it was a nice evening. Towards the end of the week, mom and dad went back up to Seattle for Ashley's graduation. Unfortunately I couldn't go since it was on a Friday morning and work was crazy-busy for me that week.

"Travel is 90% anticipation and 10% recollection"
Edward Streeter

Monday, July 6, 2009

Fun Times!

It's always hard to sleep when Ron is out of town. He's up in Washington (state), frantically trying to get the place winterized before his life is turned upside down in August. I hope he really means it when he says he's planning to stay in town when the baby comes... In any case, I thought I would catch up on some posting.

My parents came to town to visit, mostly because Meagan & Micah bought them a cruise to Alaska for Christmas this year, so while they were in the neighborhood, they visited Wendel & Ashley, and they visited us. I had heard all about the fabulous time they had whale-watching with Wendel and Ashley, and of course the cruise -- who doesn't love that? My dad was worried he'd be bored stiff, but it's actually the first time in my life that I've seen him take a step back and enjoy himself. amazing. Anyway, I didn't want to disappoint them, so I planned a few things myself. When they came in Friday night, June 6, our ward had a chili cookoff. (Yeah, I know it's wierd to have in June, but that's when it was). It was actually a fabulous activity, with kids' games, a dessert auction, hay bales, line dancing, and tons of cute decorations, like a jail that you could lock people in if they misbehaved. We also had a soda fountain -- so cute -- and a cupcake walk in the R.S. room for the kids (in addition to the games). and, of course, the chili, with subsequent judging. My mom took tons of pictures, but I didn't... so I'll have to rely on her to post them... Anyway, since I'm on the activities committee, we stayed late to help clean up. Meaning, we didn't get up the next morning until later in the day.

The next day, I wanted to go tour the navy boats that were docked on the Willamette. (They only had ships open for viewing in four cities this year -- partly because of security and partly because of deployment, I guess). After waiting in line for an hour, and only being halfway through, we decided to bag it, and headed to see the floats from the Grand Floral Parade. They always display them after the parade, so all can view them at their leisure. (without little kids, it's no fun to sit through a parade, so we were going to skip to the best part... ). of course, I didn't know where to find them, it would be a wild goose chase. however, as we were leaving the line to see the navy ships, there was a police escort that was stopping all foot traffic across the street, and our car was just across the street. So we'd have to wait. Then, we realized that the foot traffic stopped to allow all of the floats to drive by, on their way to being displayed. How amazing was that! talk about being at the right place at the right time! They didn't have people on them when we saw them, but the flowers were amazing! and we were so close (on the curb), like 10 ft away! So cool. Of course, I was rummaging around for my camera -- which I discovered later I had left in the car -- and so missed a few of them and didn't get pictures, but I downloaded pictures from the web anyway. You get the idea. There were 15 floats.

I'm going to finish the rest another day, since it's very late....