No GPS Necessary

So once again, we have decided to bury ourselves in a major renovation in the weeks before adding +1 to our family. Nevermind the constant dirt, dust, and grime from construction materials and those tracked in on the boots of our army of contractors, but we also have a lot less storage room and organization at the moment. The first renovation was isolated to the upstairs while we made our cozy home downstairs but this time the renovation has managed to touch almost every room in the house so this round of baby preparation is all about strategic positioning.

From the pile of hastily stashed boxes full of baby gear that was once stored in the attic loft of Maxon’s bedroom (that has now been replaced with a furnace) on the upstairs landing, I managed to find the newborn essentials. No small feat considering the boxes of baby clothes I meticulously labeled with the corresponding size-in-months were mixed in with the ones Mike labeled as “clothes too big” and “clothes too small”. I’ve found and washed about 2 days worth of newborn clothes and separated them into yet another bag that will eventually be consolidated into The Hospital Bag. I’d love to go ahead and pack that too but all of our suitcases are buried in the upstairs closet with our hanging clothes and behind the full-length dressing mirror and Mike’s dresser. The carseat carefully wrapped in a jumbo-size garbage bag is now in the forefront of the formidable pile, followed by the bouncy seat and enormous baby swing. The pack-and-play is also accessible but only because it is in the same spot we left it from our trip to Yellowstone last summer, first awaiting to be put away properly in Maxon’s bedroom and now the first line of defense for hairballs and drywall crumblings. I have a box of nursing and postpartum supplies in an old diaper box in the bathroom sitting on top of Maxon’s out-of-season wardrobe. With the contractors in and out of our lovely master bathroom, I like to give a visual cue of who is really running the show around here.

As for the non-pregnancy part of our daily lives, we have also managed to make do with an abundance of stuff and limited space. I actually have a sense of pride when I’m able to produce just the very thing we need at that precise moment. Since the utility closet had to be emptied for demo, general inventory has been relegated to my office. Paper towel roll ran out? Check on top of the TV. Power drill? Toolbox hidden under the dining table. Need to replace those AA batteries? No problem–in a box behind Maxon’s Little People Rampway. Making burgers and looking for the barbecue grilling set? You guessed it–in a box. In the guest bathtub. Next to the high chair. For all its randomness, whatever you need is probably within 2 degrees of separation from where you are currently standing. Beat that, Martha Stewart.

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2011 Year in Review

You take a ton of photos in any given year, but even more when you have a toddler on the scene.  I summed up the ones that were most descriptive of how our year went and did my best to include family and friends.  I put it to music and here it is.   You can also check out last year’s summary video (which is really a summary of Maxon’s first year of life) if you are so inclined.  Happy 2012!  Enjoy!!

At 32 Weeks

8 little weeks left before we become a family of four. Eight. Single digit countdown! If the contractors hold to their timeline, we should be done with this round of renovation in 4 weeks, giving me 4 WHOLE weeks to prepare for the new arrival. What am I going to do with that abundance of time? If you recall, the end date of our last renovation coincided with the day we brought Maxon home from the hospital, and truth be told, lingered another week or two after that to finish the exterior. That was a particular tough time for task-driven and organizational me, having to deal with moving back upstairs into the new space (but with no real furniture), setting up Maxon’s nursery, Christmas card-writing, decorating, and shopping. This time around, I’m truly excited watching everything come together, even though I am battling the screams of my inner clean-freak seeing the contents of the house covered in 100-year-old dust, holes in the ceiling and floor, and virtually no privacy in the house 6 out of 7 days of the week. This renovation is different from the last but I like to think that I’m different too and am comically thinking there is a chance that I will handle the newborn phase a lot better this time!

As far as the interior “construction” going on in my belly, I continue to be amazed that I haven’t literally exploded yet. This kid is constantly on the move. Two weeks ago at my last appt when my OB was trying to get a heartrate, his kicks practically returned some serious feedback on the Doppler. And if I’m partaking in the ice cream portion of my day, then he’s doing a little happy dance. And if he’s not practicing his kung-fu moves in my belly, then he probably has the hiccups. I find it ironic that the closer I give birth, my belly button, the last vestige of my being in my own mother’s womb, is quickly disappearing. I’m sure there is symbolism in that.