Thomas: You Never Know What To Expect

Luke took our nephew Thomas (6) to a Blazer game a few nights ago. Thomas was PUMPED. On the car ride there...

Thomas: Why did the alligator cross the road?

Luke: Why?

Thomas: So his baby wouldn't get eaten! AH HA HA

Luke: Nice, did you make that one up?

Thomas: Yes. I make up ALL my own jokes.

Thomas: Wanna know why you're lucky?

Luke: Why?

Thomas: Because you're having a baby and you live close to McDonalds so you won't have to drive very far when you take your kid to play there.

At the game...

The blazer dancers came out and Luke said Thomas was totally enthralled by them. When the dance was over he turned to luke, raised his hand, and said, "HIGH FIVE FOR THAT!!!"

He is such a good little man, and he never ceases to surprise us!
From 2009_02_18


Random Run Ins

It is such a treat to run into someone you love unexpectedly or out of context. It happens rarely, but when it does it makes my entire DAY!
  • Today I was walking Rucker along the waterfront & decided to stop by the fire station, where jack is doing some plumbing work. There are dozens of contractors, and I didn't expect to see him, but I peeked in a window & sure enough there he was! He took a little break and showed me around the site. It was so good to get a brother hug in the middle of the day!
  • Several months ago I was at my sellwood starbucks getting coffee before work, and I felt this warm "paw" on my neck. Quite startled I turned around & there was my DAD!!! He was in the area to check on a job site and was getting his morning coffee too. I am at starbucks MAYBE 5 minutes a day, and my dad works in Beaverton & lives in Wilsonville- so it was such a coincidence to see him there. What a great way to start my day!

Birthing Class, part II

So we went to birthing class again Sunday. I think the content is getting progressively more relevant, but I will say that some of it is quite unnecessary. To refresh our memories from last week, the teacher asked for people to volunteer to demonstrate the pregnancy exercise we learned. Luke, ever the supportive husband, volunteered me to demonstrate the PELVIC ROCK in front of the entire group. The pelvic rock, folks, is when you get on all fours and stick your ass out. Thanks, Luke.

Golden Nugget of the Night:
"Danger Signs, #11: 'Anything coming out of vagina (bag of waters, umbilical cord, foot, hand, etc.'"
-I'm not kidding you- that is an exact excerpt from the book.


Valentine's Day

Luke & I never do anything big on valentines day- tonight we grilled steaks (YUM) and we're watching the NBA Dunk Contest. But I got him a card. And got no card in return. Hmph. I saw this episode of the office recently, and the exchange between pam & roy totally sums up typical male logic...

Roy: Hey babe.
Pam: Hey.
Roy: You almost ready to go?
Pam: I guess, yeah.
Roy: What's wrong?
Pam: Nothing, it's just I had to sit here all day, while Phyllis got like an entire garden delivered to her.
Roy: What, you're mad at me?
Pam: I mean, I know that we said no big gifts, but I was kind of hoping you'd get me something for Valentine's Day.
Roy: Well, Valentine's Day isn't over. Let's get you home and you are gonna get the best sex of you life.

Weird Pregnancy Belly Thing

My stomach makes this weird point when I sit up- it's like Mt. Middlebrooks!

I like big GUTS and I cannot lie...

29 weeks prego!
From 2009_02_13

this thing is getting out of hand...
From 2009_02_13


7 months prego=3rd Trimester!!!

I've got 82 days to go- WOOHOO
From 2009_02_06

Cousins Night!

Cousin Kevin got in town for his dad's funeral, and since Katie & Matt were up too, we all got together at Grandma Jo's. Not all the cousins were there- but most, and it was a BLAST! In the group pics Tera is missing b/c her son had an accident & she was attending to him :)
Kevin & his newest cousin Savannah
From 2009_02_06

The Girls
From 2009_02_07

Matt & Katie
From 2009_02_06

Jack & Patty
From 2009_02_06

Grandma Jo & Savannah Joy
From 2009_02_06

Tera & Taylor
From 2009_02_06

From 2009_02_06

The Gang
From 2009_02_06

The Boys
From 2009_02_06

Best Night Ever: Childbirth Class

Ok, so I signed up for a $250 8-week (2.5 hrs/week) childbirth class. It's on the "Bradley Method" which is what I wanted to learn. As you might imagine, Luke was less than thrilled about this. It didn't help that his dad, brother and brother-in-law all told him how big of a waste of time it would be. Luke said he'd go with "an open mind," but I started to get pre-birthing class jitters. Here is a list of things that happened tonight...

1. Luke almost got in a fight. Within 10 minutes of getting there we were told we had parked in a bad spot, so luke went to move the truck. There was a "friendly neighbor" outside sitting in his truck with the window rolled down and the engine on. As Luke got closer to our truck the guy says: THIS IS A FIRE LANE! (luke nods). then, YOU CAN'T PARK HERE (luke continues walking towards his truck). Then, SO MOVE YOUR TRUCK! This time luke (still walking towards our truck) says, THAT'S WHAT I'M DOING!!! As soon as luke got to our truck the guy said, "PRICK" and Luke turned around to ask him to repeat himself, but the guy did not repeat himself.
2. We had to practice pregnancy exercises, including kegals, squats, and an all-fours yoga type move. Husbands also had to practice, and for this reason alone, I regret not having my camera.
3. We watched a birth simulation video that referred to the husband as the "lover." I cannot be sure, but I bet this is not what I'll be calling luke while I'm in labor. The video also suggested that in early labor a woman might appreciate her husband whispering sweet nothings in her ear, or perhaps singing. No thank you.
4. We learned about guided imagery as a form of relaxation. Then the gals had to lay on the floor while the husband led them through guided imagery. The teacher suggested we use a waterfall theme. So luke started singing "Don't go chasing waterfalls" and then we started laughing & could not regain our composure. I do not think the teacher was impressed. She was probably thinking: "Now THAT couple is going to end up with an epidural for sure!"
5. During the explanation of perineum massage Luke whispered, "What is a perineum" and I had to whisper back, "I'll tell you later"

In all honesty it was a good class. We did learn a lot, and even though there were things that made us giggle like immature school kids in a sex ed class, I'm sure we'll make it through the next 7 weeks...

cute kids

Today we went to luke's parents house to visit. There were kids everywhere, and at one point we got an update that some of the kids were collecting rocks outside. We didn't think much of it until we spotted them as we were getting ready to go --Lex (9), Richard (8) and Thomas (6) were collecting rocks from the NEIGHBORS yard! We're talking nice, decorative rocks surrounding an outdoor water feature. The kids each had bags full of rocks that they had collected from houses up & down the street. Can you imagine what you would have done if you looked out & saw 3 kids blatantly taking rocks from your yard & putting them in bags? oh gosh....


Breaking into my own house

My friend Sarah was so kind as to check in on my cat while we were out of town. I gave her my key and haven't stopped by to pick it up yet. This hadn't been a problem until today when I got home & was locked out of my own house. So 7 months pregnant, I had to climb in through a first story window-much complicated by a VERY excited dog who was so happy to see my front half that I was covered in doggy kisses while trying to enter. It looked a lot like this...

Owning an Aussie...

There are two main reasons one might get an Aussie:
1. If you're a farmer with a herd to keep, you get an Australian Shepherd for practical purposes (i.e. herding)
2. If you're the average non-livestock-owning American, and if you're being honest with yourself, there is really only ONE reason you get an Aussie: because you know they are the SMARTEST breed (second only to border collies, but they have OCD which dq's them off the list...) and by having the SMARTEST breed you're making a statement which reflects your OWN superior intelligence.

We pretty much got Rucker (I wanted a basset hound, the polar opposite of an aussie) because Luke meets lots of people with dogs, and he was most impressed with Aussies. Let me rephrase that- he was mostly impressed with the STORIES people told about their aussies. Stories about aussies who know that every Tuesday is "park" day. Stories about Aussies who clean up their chew toys & neatly arrange them in their toy basket. Stories about Aussies who save wayward children from wandering into a lake. In a way, we thought we were getting a combination maid/baby sitter by getting an Aussie.

Well what we got....was Rucker. Now I LOVE MY DOG. But let me put it this way- when people find out I have an Aussie they say, "Oh! Aren't those dogs REALLY smart?" My response is "Yeah, but ours is just....average." And it's true. Some aussie owners flaunt bumper stickers that say, "My Aussie is smarter than your honor student." I'm pretty skilled in the art of denial, but that is where my conscience draws the line.

Case in Point:
I watched a PBS show on skunks last week (my parents have a skunk problem, so I was interested). It explained that skunks have a distinct black and white stripe pattern (not to mention a serious stench) which helps animals recognize & AVOID them. You know, the whole "fool me once..." idea. Then it showed video footage of coyotes and cougars approaching, recognizing, & then running away from skunks.

The FIRST time Rucker was sprayed by a skunk he came into my parent's house crying and with strings of drool coming from his mouth (a sign of nausea & serious distress in dogs). Then he had to endure baths of tomato juice, hydrogen peroxide, and baking soda- all administered by my mom who is very thorough. Rucker hates baths. I felt bad for both him & my mom but figured it was kinda like chicken pox- you suffer through it once & then you're done.


Rucker was sprayed AGAIN Monday night. Poor mom was out of tomato juice, so Rucker got an abbreviated treatment of hydrogen peroxide & baking soda. Rucker got only moderately clean because mid way through Mom got a knock on the head when Rucker attempted escape, tangled in the shower curtain, and tore the rod off the wall. Oops. She returned Rucker the next day.

Now after 2 days of skunk stench I could take it no longer- I decided to bathe rucker inside (normally this is an outdoor activity but it was dark & cold).....

The Good News, a short list:
1. my dog doesn't stink so bad
2. my bathroom floor and walls got drenched, which means my floor got mopped

The Bad News, a lengthy list:
1. I knew it would be messy, so I got naked & stood in the tub with the dog. I forgot, until it was too late, that Rucker tends to pee whenever he is in standing water.
2. You know how lizards lose their tail as a means of escape from predators in the wild? Well my dog does the same thing with his fur while being bathed. Because it was a team event I was covered in dog hair from head to toe by the time he was clean. I looked like a werewolf- coated in black hair.
3. It is nearly impossible to wipe up wet dog hair- especially off walls or porcelain. You try to wipe it off with a towel & it just smears whatever hair miraculously got on the towel back onto whatever you're wiping. The good news is that by TRYING to wipe it up with a towel you effectively COMB the dog hair in one direction, thereby improving the aesthetic appeal of dog fur on your sink and toilet.
4. No matter what attempt I make to towel dry and blow dry my dog, he inevitably ends up taking matters into his own paws by army-crawling up & down the wool rug, bedspread, and couch cushions in effort to dry himself.

I know this was a ridiculously long post. I just had to contrast the reasons I got an Aussie & the reality of owning one. Do you know what our dog's nickname is? "shouldagottheotherpuppy."

Why My Baby Names are TOP SECRET

We have taken some serious heat from friends & family because we are not finding out the sex of our baby & we're not sharing our baby names (which we have not totally finalized anyhow). But folks, here is EXACTLY why we're not telling our names...

1. A few months back I was liking the name Auxley for a little boy. Yeah, it's unusual. Fine. But I have this mental image of a little brick of a boy with a spunky personality that we would affectionately call "Aux." My mom was bugging me for names so I told her that was one we considered but decided against. Her reaction (in a tone somewhere between a snort a screech and a scoff): WHY IN THE WORLD WOULD YOU NAME A BABY THAT?
2. Recently while in Phoenix visiting my sis (and new mommy to Savannah) Katie, she was pushing for name details. I conceded & told her that a name I liked but luke did not like (meaning it is out of the running) for a girl was Bess. We were eating pizza and she snorted so loud that I think she actually inhaled some pepperoni. Then she said, gasping, "would you call her...BESSIE?" With a grim and straight face I answered YES, THAT WAS THE IDEA. She choked some more. Then later she pointed out that Bessie is the name of the FAT girl in Nancy Drew. After that she wisely quit asking for name ideas.
2b. While I'm ratting out Katie, I will also tell you that she recently texted me to tell me she had a dream about my baby. It was bad news, she said. The baby was: a) a boy, b) ugly, and c) retarded. I'm not kidding you. That was her dream.
3. At my grandma's birthday the subject of names came up again. Here's the email I got from my mom the next day:
Hey Mitch -
Last night you said something about liking the name "Grace" for a girl, but that was the O'Brien's dog. Well, I got to thinking, what about "Hope" for a girl and "Dierk" (rimes with jerk), okay maybe not. Or maybe "Derek"? Anyway, I really like Hope, but it isn't my call. Love you.

Now, here's the thing. I did NOT say we were considering the name Grace (my mom must have misheard me) but let's just pretend for a moment that Grace was my super favorite name, and my mom's reaction is to remind me that her neighbor's DOG is named Grace??? Also MOM, do you know what I think about when I think of the name DIERK? I think of Dirk Diggler, the porn star from the movie Boogie Nights. So there.

Sigh. Scorn me once, shame on YOU. Scorn me twice, shame on ME. Scorn me thrice, and that's it! NO MORE NAME HINTS TO ANYONE. EVER. I MAY NOT EVEN ANNOUNCE THE BABY'S NAME AT BIRTH.

PS- I'm not really offended by mom or katie's reactions :) I do think it made for a good blog though, don't ya think?


Uncle Kelly

Patty's dad, Uncle Kelly, passed away on Saturday morning. Cousin Kevin is on his way home from Iraq to be with his mom & his sister. All our thoughts & prayers go to Jenny, Patty & Kevin- we love you guys so much!

27 weeks/Hoover Dam

We drove through Hoover dam on our way from phx to vegas on the 27 week mark of pregnancy.
From 2009_01_30

From 2009_01_30

Wardrobe change for another 27 week pic - credit goes to katie for lending me this very cute maternity shirt!
From 2009_01_30

Savannah Joy!

I got to hold Savannah baby for HOURS. It was so great- she is such an agreeable little thing- barely a squeak from her the entire time we were there. We are in love...and how could you not be?
From 2009_01_30

From 2009_01_30

acting TOUGH...
From 2009_01_30

acting CUTE...
From 2009_01_30

auntie kimberly who is winning the favorite auntie contest by being with savannah 24/7 and supporting matt & katie through their last few weeks of pregnancy & first few weeks of parenthood. Please. Like actions count for something. pfft.
From 2009_01_29

She piddled all over while Matt & Luke somehow fumbled the diaper change- so it ended up being bath time for her. Watching Matt & Katie bathe her was adorable- and very entertaining.
From 2009_01_29

Savannah sitting next to her cousin!
From 2009_01_30

Proud auntie & uncle
From 2009_01_30

Neglected Dogs

We got to spend the night with matt, katie, savannah, visiting auntie kimberly, and the 2 resident heihn dogs: Artezurkeses & Maximus. I will say that the dogs were more excited to see me than Savannah was. Which is why they get first billing here:

Ignored dogs who just want to come inside for a little pizza dinner:
From 2009_01_29

They are so neglected in fact that they have to share a meager chair for sleeping. How can you sleep with 4 other paws in your face? To put this in perspective, kimberly only fared slightly better- she got the couch & the dogs got the chair (Luke & I got the guest bed!)
From 2009_01_30

Viva Las Vegas

Ok, don't expect any sort of order to these photos...
We had a good time this last week. Luke won a trip last year for airfare & 2 nights at a fancy Vegas resort. We tacked on a trip to phoenix (to see SAVANNAH) and an extra few nights in Vegas at the Stratosphere. Where do I start with the pics...
From 2009_02_01

Luke in front of the Binions Poker Wall of Fame.
From 2009_02_01

Photography challenge 1: night shot atop the stratosphere- 866 feet off the ground!
From 2009_02_02

Photography challenge 2: posing for photos with husband who could care less about taking pictures (this is why pics w/girls only turn out so much better!)
From 2009_02_02

exhibit b...
From 2009_02_02

In front of the Venetian
From 2009_02_02

Baby shot!
From 2009_02_02

From 2009_02_02

This is a pic of baby in front of an OX in the Bellagio- 2009 is the Chinese "year of the ox" and since our baby will be born in 09 this photo made sense to me but to apparently NONE of the surrounding tourists who not so patiently waited while I posed for this shot.
From 2009_02_02