Thursday, October 25, 2007

Carving of the Pumpkins

So--- we went to the pumpkin patch on Thursday (see previous post) and on Monday for our FHE activity we carved our pumpkins. It took us a little longer than normal because we were involved with Heroes (highly recommended). Two hours later this was Greg's finished product:
Four hours later this was mine (note: I drew the stencil for carving because I really wanted to do a Nightmare before Christmas pumpkin):I'm pretty proud of our pumpkins--- we had them glowing every night this week until today when Greg (not the pregnant lady) couldn't take the smell of rotting pumpkins. Here they are in all their glory.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Pumpkin Patch Spectacular!!!


On Saturday, we went to the Treinen Farm for some fall fun. It was so much fun. It's about 25 minutes north of Madison. As soon as we got there we decided to get tickets for the Pumpkin Patch and the Giant Maze. After talking it through (i.e. pregnant lady getting her way) we decided to do the Pumpkin Patch first. In order to get to the pumpkin patch you have to take a hayride. The last time I took a hayride there were benches and no hay. We go to step into the wagon and there's one bench for 'pregnant ladies and older folk.' I asked the volunteer if I could still sit there even it I'm not showing and Greg moved me along into the hay. I was glad he did because we got to sit in the front---right behind the driver---oh the smell. The horses pulling us along were dubbed the 'slowest two on the farm.' Turtle award aside, Max and Mike made the ride so much fun.

Once we got to the pumpkin patch, Greg went a hunting. I found my pumpkin pretty quick, but being my indecisive little self I started dragging my pumpkin around to see if there was another pumpkin that might catch my eye---while Greg hunted for his perfect one. A few minutes later, Greg came back triumphantly holding the spoils of his find. One hayride later, we were back on the farm. We cleaned our pumpkins and put them in the car so we could continue our fantastic farm fun. Before we tackled the maze, we needed to appease the hunger of the baby. The hunger wasn't common, so the only way to conquer it was to have my first Wisconsin Brat. Oh my---- it was so goooooood. Good enough to take a picture. :)

The big finale of our farm day was no small task. We wanted to conquer the largest corn maze in Wisconsin: The Enchanted Forest. It wasn't haunted (thank goodness), it was just 15-acre monster. The Treinen farm allows for different levels of maze enthusiasts.

First level--- At the beginning of the maze they give you a map that only has 1/8 of the maze on it. Your job is to find the #1 star in that section. If you find that station, there is a mailbox with the next 1/8 section of the maze and the #2 star station--- and so on.

Second level--- The next step was to find eight little green posts with special hole punches on it. If you come out of the maze with four punches, you get a free bag of popcorn per person. If you come out of the maze with all eight you get the popcorn plus a "Maze Master" certificate.

If you didn't feel as though you couldn't handle it, then you can you the stapled full map also given at the beginning of the maze. If that map stayed stapled on the way back, you got a piece of candy.

Enter the maze. Greg and I were excited and having fun. The first couple of sections we found the station and decided to go on--- then we ran into a hole punch. Oh the joys! We found one of the eight! If we found one then the rest shouldn't be that hard, right? Greg and I found our roles. Greg was our human GPS--- he knew how to get us from a 2-D sectioned map to the real thing. I became the ESP hole punch finder. We also worked with a couple other couples to figure out where the hole punches were in the first sections---just in case we found the other six. We figured since the maze was split into eight sections that there was a hole punch in each section.

Until the seventh section we were doing amazing. Greg was great and I had the sight. We had finished the majority of the maze in 35 minutes. Then disaster struck. Our desire for the hole punches overcame our aching legs (man, did we get a work-out) and sweating bodies (yay for water bottles). 45 minutes later we were still in the same section looking for the allusive punch. Feeling both physically and emotionally beaten, we decided to get out and get our free bags of popcorn (we got four punches and knew where a totally of six were). When we got to the candy stand, we bitter-sweetly took our spoils of accomplishing half of our goal. Another couple came after us with a triumphant gleam in their eyes; they had all eight punches and I couldn't resist. I asked where the two were that we didn't know about. One was in the last section; the section we skipped because of our weariness. Another was in a section that we has already covered; a section with two punches. Doh! Oh well, we will be back next year and we WILL get ALL punches next time. Even if we must stop for diaper duty.

Friday, October 19, 2007

Fall Pictures

It's the season for new pictures and I thought it would be nice to post two:

1...This is the very first picture of our little 'lima bean.' We call her/him that for two reasons: 1. that's what s/he looks like in this picture and 2. Grandma Barb called him/her that when she first saw the picture. Hopefully, the nickname only sticks while in utero.
2... A few days after the first picture of our baby was taken, it was picture day at work. Since it's a new year, the staff has the option to get their picture taken too. At this point, I'm one day shy of being 10 weeks preggers (two weeks ago today) AND I got up early to make sure I would look nice. I'm glad I took the extra effort.Sorry I don't having recent pictures of Greg--- we're going to the PUMPKIN PATCH tomorrow and I'll post some then!

Stuck in the Middle

Right now, I feel as though I'm stuck in the middle--- caught in the land of in-between. We're living in place that is only semi-permanent. I'm at a job that's half-way between teacher and baby-sitter. Greg's half-way between school and real-life. And last, but not least, I'm in-between regular 'clothes' and maternity clothes. Which means I'm in-between not being a mom and being a mom.

The last two are what brought on the feeling of being in the middle, and yet, it helped me realize just how much of my life is really in the middle. We had a great, albeit, sad time in California last time. Thinking about Jay makes me remember just how much I miss him. In fact, I had a dream last night that Greg and I went to a MoTab concert with Jay and Barb (we really did this last year), or so I thought. I turned to ask Jay if he was enjoying it and as I turned I remembered he wasn't there. I started to cry in my dream (which usually wakes me up in real life) and at that moment a thought came into my dreaming head--- even though, I'm not there physically I'll always be with you. How comforting, and again, stuck in between of emotions. No matter the sadness, it felt good to be around family.

Sometimes, I wonder: when will in-between finally stop? Will I ever feel like in-between has taken me to the next stage? Or is this life just another in-between? That question I know the answer to and that's what helps me when I have my moments of in-between.

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

The Art of Snacking & Using Seabands

I'm really excited to finally say something on our blog, so I'm just gonna come out with it---- I'M PREGNANT!!!

We've known since the week of Jay's passing. It was really nice to find out the same week; it helped us all mourn a little better. We didn't want to announce it yet until we had gone to the doctor and today we did. We saw our little lima bean (it's about that size right now) and it's little heart working so hard. It was amazing.

I'm about 9 weeks and 3 days along--- with a due date of May 10, 2008. Any-who, I'm having all kinds of crazy symptoms. The only thing I haven't had is vomitting (my mom and mom-in-law both went through all five of their pregnancies without puking either). I really hope I have the same luck.

Right now I'm doing fine. I'm really nauseated in the mornings and evenings. Throughout the day I deal with really crazy hunger pains about every two hours. So, I've been carrying snacks around with me. I also use these wrist bands called "Seabands" for nausea. They have helped a ton--- especially when we go on long car rides. When we went to Utah a month ago we were even able to pre-board because of my nausea--- we plan on doing the same this weekend. It helps to be closer to the bathroom.

Right now, Greg and I are super excited that we're welcoming our first child into our home--- and personally I can't wait until my nausea and tummy hungers 'maybe' subdue.

Saturday, October 6, 2007

Scenic Fall Drive & Two Plants

Last weekend, Greg and I decided to take a drive around the area. I thought the foliage would be more prevalent. It wasn't as colorful as I hoped for, but it was still breath-taking. The area around Madison is beautiful. Hills and trees are everywhere; we even saw families going to get pumpkins already.

All of these events gets me in a fall mood. I absolutely love fall. I love the leaves, pumpkins, and light jackets. I love getting Halloween decorations out---only the beginning to the decoration season. Fall means the beginning of the end of the year. Moods change into anticipation and excitement. It's great.

To celebrate the beginning of fall, we got our first large house plant. The picture above is the cactus Greg got for me to celebrate our anniversary; it is fun, but we wanted to get a plant that makes a bigger statement in our apartment. So, we got a plant that's pictured on the right. I can't remember the name, but here's a picture. We love it and are super excited to have a couple more living things in our apartment. :)

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