Wednesday, April 28, 2010

One Week and Counting

Apparently my baby is acting like a little monkey because he was doing somersaults in the womb when he was supposed to be settling in a head down position for delivery! Last Friday, an ultrasound revealed that he was breech, with his head just under my left rib and his feet on my bladder (ow!). So, I was scheduled to go into the hospital for an external cephalic version (ECV), which basically means that a doctor would try to rotate the baby into a head down position. When I got there on Monday, his head was on my right side... so he was moving around, but apparently he didn't stop to ask for directions to the exit! The ECV went very smoothly, and he was in position within a minute or so. However, he has a lot of fluid (and therefore, a lot of room to move around still), so the doctor wanted me to come in at 39 weeks to check his position again, rotate him if necessary, and then induce labor. What she wants to avoid is a situation where he flips back into a breech position and then I go into labor or my water breaks before they have a chance to turn him, because that would mean an automatic c-section. This is the best way, I guess. So, I'm scheduled to have my baby on May 5, Cinco de Mayo! I sure hope he likes Mexican food.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Checking In

Does anyone wonder how big I am these days? Wonder no more!!



I feel as big as I look... trust me.

Life happens kind of fast, so I'm going to put a couple little updates in here. First, Paige learned how to ride her bicycle without training wheels!



Dads are the best for teaching this skill... she'd still be on training wheels if I was in charge of this. Why? Well, I guess I don't want her to fall and break her head or skin her knee. Thank goodness for dads!



And... I've had a purple Camaro since I graduated from high school, but sadly, it was finally time to sell it and move on. Lots of memories with this car... I've had it for 16 years, you know! I had it before I ever got on the internet... that's a long time ago, right?

Then I didn't even have time to come to terms with the fact that it was going away because it sold within one hour after I posted it on craigslist. Here it is on the trailer... that was the last I saw of it :(





But I had to reason with myself that it was just an object after all, and I remembered what I heard on that show "Hoarders"... the memories still belong to me even if the object is gone. So, I let it go, and I'm excited to get a car that is actually more practical for a soon-to-be family of seven. It's all good!

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Spring Break Adventure

I'm the kind of girl who just has to get out of town sometimes, and since we were not able to go anywhere during fall break because of my morning sickness, I was determined to do something fun on spring break, despite being seven months pregnant. So, I cooked up a plan to go up to New Mexico to visit some friends who were our neighbors in Utah, and then to go to Moab to see Arches and Canyonlands National Parks. We never went there when we actually lived in Utah, but hey... better late than never, right? When I explained our plans to our friends, they decided to go with us to Moab and make it even more fun!!

So, we headed out Monday night, and arrived at our friends' home in Bloomfield, NM, around 2AM. Tuesday, we visited the ruins in Aztec.



These people must have been small. Either that, or they had a lot of bruised heads.





This was the ceremonial room, which was rebuilt according to the way archeologists believed it appeared.



Paige was happy to be reunited with her friend, Emmee. They had lots of running around the ruins, and we had a hard time rounding them up and keeping them corralled.



Wednesday, Russ and Will went snowboarding in Durango while the rest of the kids stayed home and played with toys all day.

Thursday, we headed for Moab. We spent the afternoon visiting some of the arches at Arches National Park.

The first arch we came to was North Window.



It was amazing that Kyle could hold up this arch for us, don't you think? (Why's he wearing shorts when it's like 50 degrees and windy outside? He dresses himself, people...)



And then on to South Window.



Here they are together (the arches, I mean).



Nearby was one of my favorite formations - Double Arches.





We hiked up inside the arches to get a better view.



"Shiver me timbers! A cave!"



Turret Arch was last on our tour.



Kallie was lucky to hitch a ride.



After researching Moab's climate and finding that the average highs at that time of year were in the 60's, we were surprised to wake up Friday morning to find gray skies, cold wind, and intermittent showers. The storm that was supposed to make for an awesome snowboarding trip was a couple of days late.

As we drove into Arches again and passed Balanced Rock, which we had hiked around the day before, we were disappointed to be met with snowfall. The ground was turning white and visibility was poor, but we pressed on, determined to see Delicate Arch. We had two options. Walk the very short, relatively clean path to the lower overlook, or trudge on to the upper overlook.

You guessed it. We are troopers (well, maybe not Adam, the two-year-old... he hated everything about that little adventure).



When we started out on the path, we told the kids, "Don't step in the puddles!" But by the time we were on our way back, we said, "Hey kids, step in the puddles as much as you can!"



Luckily, despite the fog, we could still see Delicate Arch (although... it didn't seem much bigger than it was at the lower overlook... hmmm). Its beauty inspired us to return one day when we don't have pregnant women or little children and hike all the way up to sit beneath it. Maybe next time we'll try it in the fall, though. See how tiny it looks?



It's hard to smile when your mouth is frozen.



Kallie was the only one whose shoes were spared, since she was riding in the backpack, but she still enjoyed the puddles, too.



Luckily, it dried out a little bit after that, and the sun even peeked out from behind the clouds. But after that harrowing journey to see Delicate Arch, all the little kids decided to stay in the van with Dan for the next hike.

The opening scene of the hike was amazing enough to convince the rest of us that it was worth it.



Landscape Arch, the longest span in the park. We were prohibited from going underneath it, since it is thought to be a bit fragile after a giant chunk of it fell off about 20 years ago while visitors were sitting nearby. Wouldn't want that to collapse on you, right?



And we could see Partition Arch and Navajo Arch nearby.



After realizing it was no longer as cold and muddy as it was before, we opted to take the little side trails to see Tunnel Arch and Pine Tree Arch. The kids guessed that Pine Tree Arch was so named because of a pine tree that grew nearby. Bingo! It was actually many pine trees, though you can't see them in this picture.



Kyle was duly impressed. I, on the other hand, was constantly having mini heart attacks, as he prided himself on the number of precarious places he could climb to.



Everyone joined us again on the next little hike to Skyline Arch. As you can see, we couldn't actually get up inside this arch.



So what did the kids like best about this arch? All the rocks that had fallen from inside it some 70 years ago. They made a most excellent playground.







The kids also had a strange fascination with the "soft sand," and Kyle even brought a bag of it home. I'm sure he'd love to show it to you if you ask.



Sand Dune Arch was our last stop of the day.



Can you guess how it got its name?



Our little sand angel... or should we call him our dust devil?



Like brother, like sister.



On our way out.



Saturday, we moved on to Canyonlands National Park. Who knew the elevation was so high and that it would be freezing?! Now by this time, my camera battery was dying, so I didn't take as many pictures. Are you so happy about that?

View from the Grand Overlook. The grandeur of this scene simply cannot be captured by a photograph. You must go and see for yourself!



No pictures from our hikes to Upheaval Dome and the top of Whale Rock, but I did get some at our last stop - Mesa Arch. Kallie was totally wiped out, as you can see.



What was he looking at, you might ask...



This!



And, of course, everyone else had to look down the big, scary cliff.



That night, we said our goodbyes to our friends and went our separate ways. They went back to New Mexico, while we headed south, trying to make Holbrook before stopping for the night. We didn't last and ended up staying in Chinle, AZ, on the Navajo reservation.

The next day, we visited Petrified Forest National Park near Holbrook.



"Old Faithful," the largest log in the park.



The kids enjoyed the museum.



Then we hiked to a partially restored ruin that was built out of petrified wood.





There were interesting bits of petrified wood everywhere.



Along with many petroglyphs.



And some Indian ruins.



And beautiful overlooks of the Painted Desert (yes, I was there too!).



One final picture at the last overlook, and then the camera died. Her wounds show you that she had fun.



After all those days of high adventure, the kids were more than ready to head home, and I was more than ready to sleep in my own bed again... but I'm glad we went! Thanks to the Joneses for a fun time!