Sunday, May 3

Life Lately: Of Traveling Adventures and Cankles

Last week I traveled for work: Washington D.C on Friday - Monday, then to Raleigh, North Carolina, then back to D.C. on Tuesday night, and back to Phoenix on Thursday. Of course, I figured this would be no big deal, since I'd gone to SXSW a few weeks ago. 

But that was when I was 21 weeks along. I was now 27 weeks, and those five weeks really make a difference, as I was about to discover.

The first night in D.C., after an incredible Italian dinner, my coworkers and I drove and walked around to all the monuments, and didn't get back to the hotel until around 1 am.

I'm not skilled enough with a camera to take great pictures at night, and my phone died, but we saw the White House, Eisenhower building, Jefferson Memorial, Lincoln Memorial (really cool at night, with the Washington Monument and lights of the city reflecting in the pool), Korean and Vietnam War memorials.

I've been to D.C. once before, as a high school sophomore. I didn't remember there being so many steps at the memorials. Now, I know where to find all the elevators! Pregnant lady win.

I took this photo from my hotel room early Saturday morning. With the time change and work, I didn't get much sleep on this trip. I worked until 1-3 am most nights, and then had events to go to. 

But Sunday, I did more sightseeing. 

Come to find out, the Library of Congress is closed on Sundays. We found that out after we walked all the way there. Amazing building though!

The National Archives! I saw the Declaration of Independence (Looking a little worse for wear, but I guess that's understandable after being stolen by Nicolas Cage, rolled up, almost run over, shot at, and rubbed with lemon juice), the Constitution, Bill of Rights, and ... the Magna Carta, wearing its age well - since it was written in 1297.

Outside one of the government buildings, I happened to see this statue. Nathan Hale is one of my heroes - he was only 21 when the British hung him for treason. His famous last words: "I only regret that I have but one life to give for my country."

We also went to the Smithsonian Museum of American History, but adding all those photos would really make this post long. But, not to downplay the amazing historical artifacts of great importance, I totally geeked out at a display in the lobby of movie costumes from "The Adventures of Robin Hood" with Errol Flynn. 

To close the day, I met up with a co-worker at St. Paul's Cathedral, the National Cathedral, to hear the choir from St. Paul's Cathedral in London sing. It was a boys and mens choir, with an other-worldly organist.

After the craziness of the weekend, and the craziness to come, I really needed that hour of peace and beauty.

It's funny to think that I actually sang in that cathedral. That high school trip I mentioned earlier was with the acapella choir, and we performed in the exact spot as the choir I listened to that night. 

Then after the concert, things got a little crazy. My ankles swelled, probably from spending the last couple days on my feet. It hurt. Plus, I had a killer headache, and I'd realized how much stuff I'd actually forgotten to pack, considering that 60 degree weather was a lot colder than I remembered.

And I was supposed to fly to North Carolina the next morning, at 6:30 am. But since someone else had bought the tickets and said they'd send me the info, and hadn't, when I finally got in bed at midnight, I still didn't know what airport I was flying out of.

Monday morning! Time to wash the windows.

I woke up to my alarm at 4:00 am, after not sleeping much at all. Thankfully, I saw I had a text from my co-worker, saying she got us later flights. But even so, thanks to some slow Uber driving, we still had to run through the airport. Not easy when pregnant with cankles, but we still made it on the plane. Another pregnancy win.

So, let's talk about Southern hospitality. It's real.

When I arrived ready to work, I was given a present, just for being there. 

I was invited to dinner in the backyard of someone I'd just met, and not only was it beautiful, but it was delicious: steak, potatoes, watermelon salad, and apple pie for dessert.

Raleigh is truly stunning. There's beautiful southern mansions mixed in among the corporate buildings, forests everywhere, and everything is so green. And everyone is nice! While working, people carried my laptop bag for me, brought me water and food, and often checked on how I was feeling, which was actually really nice after several days of the cankle situation. 

I was a little sad to leave, but after a crazy Monday and Tuesday in Raleigh, I was needed back in D.C. So I caught yet another flight, and made it back. 

After having spent the previous Friday, Saturday, Sunday, and some of Monday there, as I flew in over the Potomac River, it felt oddly like coming home. 

But sometime in those last couple days, I injured myself. I don't remember how, since tripping on sidewalks is a pretty normal occurrence for me. But somehow, I did something to my right foot. Of course, I kept walking on it as usual, so by Tuesday, not only were my ankles swollen to an unusual size, I couldn't put my full weight on my right foot. 

And, I started having the curious sensation of the ground moving beneath me, when everything was definitely standing still. I think it might have had something to do with flying so much ... maybe it's vertigo? I'd never experienced anything like it, except after riding the Tower of Terror at California Adventure (never again).

I took it a little easier on Wednesday, and Thursday I spent the day off of my feet, but on a plane of course. 

Ironically, I had to switch planes in Charlotte, North Carolina. I can't seem to get away from there. 

But the flight home felt like the longest of my life. I was actually thrilled to look out the window and see brown. 

After a weekend of sleeping in my own bed, elevating my feet and not walking as much as possible, the dizzy spells have passed, I haven't had any more ankle swelling, and my foot injury is almost completely better. 

Pregnancy win!

Saturday, April 11

Spring Decor and Some Pillow Talk

Remember when I said I'd started nesting already? Let's talk about that. 

You've seen how I transitioned my Valentine's mantle to spring - I switched out the romantic location posters for birds and butterflies, added easter eggs to the branches, some greenery, a bird's nest, and a couple birds. The cappuccino candle isn't exactly spring-y, but it smells delicious, so it stayed.

The full effect. Here's where the nesting instinct started kicking in. Sidenote: why is there a whiteboard in front of the fireplace? Funny story. Sirius discovered a new game, called the climb-in-the-fireplace-drag-chunks-of-burn-wood-all-over-the-house game. Let's just say, I don't like playing. 

But you see how stark and bare that coffee table looks, with it's lonely island of coasters and forlorn TV remotes? I decided it was time to change that. 

At the same time, I decided I'd had enough of the wimpy flat Ikea pillows we'd had on the couch. Brian had had enough too, so he put a couple of extra bedroom pillows on the couch. Not tacky at all. 

I decided it was time to get some good squishy throw pillows. I started my search at Pier 1.

Not intimidating or anything.

It totally was. So many color combinations, textures, and patterns - oh my! Suddenly I couldn't remember what my living room looked like beyond the fact that I had a gray couch. 

I bought one pillow at Pier 1, and a tray for the coffee table. Then I went to World Market, and couldn't make any decisions there. Finally, I saw this at Target: 

Everything started coming together. I could use navy, which is in the living room rug, coral, a nice springy accent color, and a light aqua/sea blue, which would also work with our bedroom colors. I consulted Pinterest for pins on how to arrange couch pillows, how to mix pillow patterns, etc., and then added and subtracted pillows from my cart accordingly.

So nesting. It's real. 

Here's what's in the bags. A navy and white striped rug from Target - a clearance score, it looked like it'd been returned, so it was marked down. Perfect for a nautical nursery!

The nursery is still very much under construction. 

I bought this tray at Pier 1, also on sale. I love the French cottage touch it adds to the room. 

And, pillows! 

One for the bedroom - the gold, aqua, and gray ikat patterned one in the middle. This one is from Pier 1, on clearance. I love the gold and silver combination, and it adds pattern.

Many people I know don't like having extra pillows for decor on their bed. It adds extra time to making it, and really, what's the point? I, however, really love it. Yes, you have to take them all off and pile them on the floor every night, then put them back on in the morning. For some reason, it just makes me happy. 

Now, the living room pillows. I stuffed the "C" pillow cover above with both of the previous ikea pillow inserts. 

Couch pillows! 

I fell in love with the coral and gold pillows. They also work well in the bedroom!

I thought the big gray pillows made a nice neutral base, and the navy velvet lumbar pillow added some texture and matched the rug. 

I thought for sure the giant gray pillows would be a hit with Brian. But the day after, the couch looked like this: 

Ultimately, the gray pillows are just too big. They're uncomfortably big. And, I didn't realize that I already had a gray neutral base - the couch. The gray pillows just blended in.

So now, the gray pillows are piled on a little used chair, and the coral and navy pillow are still in use. Should I return the gray pillows? Can you return pillows, if you tried them out for a day, and now there's dog hair on them?

I could always put the money toward one of these: 

 Have you ever experienced nesting? Made any recent updates for spring? Let me know in the comments!

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Saturday, April 4

Life Lately: My bump Really Starts Showing, SXSW, and Being Sick While Pregnant

I realized that I only blogged once in March, with the gender announcement. Here's the highlights of the last month: 

We took the baby to his first baseball game, a spring training game between the Oakland A's and the Angels (bumpie above). He enjoyed it - at least that's how I interpreted all the kicking. He just can't wait to get out there. 

It feels like summertime, so we bought some patio chairs. Sirius and I are loving sitting out by the pool and enjoying the weather.

I got to go to SXSW with some of my coworkers! It was crazy, but good.

I tried to take a bumpie on the elevator whenever I happened to be in it alone, but it never really turned out.

Oh the food! It's a good thing I did lots of walking. I'll spare you all of the photos I posted on Instagram, but Ironworks Barbeque and Franks hotdogs were my favorites.

I'm glad I went, but I was also happy to get home. Five days is a long conference. 

22 Weeks!

I went through my closet, pulled out all my summer clothes, and figured out what I could still make work. I might have had a little freakout when tops I'd always thought were loose were too tight, and my shorts? Not happening. It did motivate me to start watching what I'm eating and make more of an effort to work out. 

Pool time! We got in the pool for the first time last week. It was COLD. But we stuck it out. I realized I would also need a maternity swimsuit to survive the summer. 

That, plus a great pair of maternity shorts from Target and a couple of maxi dresses = my summer wardrobe game plan.

Long hours + too much stress + not enough sleep = sick. Last week I worked myself sick, and wow, being sick while pregnant sucks. I'm taking the nurse approved cold medicine, but it isn't doing much for me. I know I need rest, but since I can't breathe, I haven't been able to sleep for the last four nights. 

Other than this cold, I've felt awesome the last several weeks. Yay for second trimester energy! I've also experienced the nesting syndrome - it's real, although I thought it wasn't supposed to happen for a while yet. More on how that turned out later!

Also, the baby is kicking so hard, I can actually see my stomach move! Brian is finally able to feel it, which makes me happy. 

Today marks 24 weeks! 

Any little known cold remedies I could try? Let me know in the comments!

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