As we finish the celebration of the birth of Jesus and new beginnings of a new year, blessings to you!
I have to remember to keep thanking God for all His blessings, for this month will be tricky! The series of events of my last week of Christmas break were enough to overwhelm me even in the best of circumstances.
Of course, being 36 weeks pregnant isn’t usually considered the “best” of circumstances. Our baby girl should be getting her own cowboys boots soon! Spartacus got his for Christmas so she’ll have to match of course.
|Sparty catching his magnetic puzzle bugs.|
We had a wonderful Christmas holiday. It was the first year we opted not to travel up to Wisconsin for Christmas, where most of my family lives, in favor of staying home and celebrating Christmas without the six hour drive with a two-year-old and pregnant me. My grandparents came down from WI for Christmas day so we got to see them, which was a great blessing. We missed seeing aunts and uncles and cousins this year, but I know staying home was the right decision for our family. Spartacus got lots of new toys, and has been enjoying his new train table for his Thomas trains, new books, a Superman blanket, and puzzles. He is obsessed with Christmas trees and Christmas lights and trains – every drive is a scavenger hunt, and he will spend hours watching Grandpa’s Santa train go around the tree at their home.
Renovation Craziness: Since we moved into our 90-year-old house last fall, we knew we wanted to do some renovations on the upstairs full bathroom and the kitchen. The sink in the upstairs bathroom hasn’t worked properly since we moved in, and after doing some Dave Ramsey savings for the last year we began planning and talking to contractors earlier this fall. Well, with a baby due any day, we decided it was a really good idea to have a fully-functioning bathroom on both floors, so we pulled the trigger and the demo process started last week.
|Odd shower box before|
|Shower without tile and soffit|
We are gutting all the existing painted laminate floor and wall tile, removing this odd wooden soffit above the shower that makes it a cave, and tiling the shower and adding new fixtures, and adding a double vanity – on about a $6000 budget. Somehow HGTV always makes it look easier than this. Because we’re doing a bit of piecemeal with contractors to save on cost, we pay for it in time as we try to coordinate the drywall guy, tub reglazer guy, plumber, and electrician.
|Before – nothing you see in this picture functions properly.|
|After demo – but still with that “charming” pre-McCarthy-era fuse box.|
So now we’re staying with my parents who live about a mile away while our house is covered in drywall dust, a large double vanity is sitting in our living room, and so we can have a functioning shower. My fear if the baby comes early, I won’t have a house to bring her home to! Thankfully nothing terrible has surfaced in the initial demo (old houses have a way of unearthing secrets you don’t want to know – or pay for).
School crazy: I have very few lesson plans yet for my maternity leave subs. I have the materials floating around in my Google Drive and my head, but not in any format two people – even when one is a close friend of mine – would like to work with for 8 weeks while I’m home with Baby Girl. School started back this past Tuesday, and this week was exhausting for me – I made it through each day and I’m pleased with my planning, but I don’t know where I will find the energy to work ahead! My schedule is also wonky this term; first period is now my free period, and I have the last lunch, which is a split-class with my freshmen (25 minutes of class, 25 minutes of lunch, 25 minutes of class). This makes the day feel very long and break-less.
Baby crazy: I know I mentioned this before, but due date is January 30 and we’re having a baby SOMETIME in the next month – and we don’t feel remotely prepared! Our church where Hubster is doing his field work for seminary was very generous for Christmas, and my wonderful coworkers are hosting a diaper shower for me this coming week. I know things will fall into place no matter what. It’s just hard to think about carting the bassinet and car seat up from the basement when the house is in such a demolished state from the bathroom, but otherwise she’ll end up sleeping in a laundry basket…Spartacus was a July baby, and spent most of his first three months on this side of naked, so we need to learn how to keep a newborn warm in this Indiana winter. Speaking of winter…
Weather crazy: It is six degrees this morning. I don’t mind snow, but I do not like frigid. It only reminds me how our house doesn’t have a garage to park in. I know I can’t control this, but I add it to my list of frustrations anyway.
Technology crazy: While I was entering grades last week at our dining room table with a cup of coffee, Spartacus came breezing through to show me one of the Christmas ornaments he had pulled off the Christmas tree. As he ran up to my chair, he tripped in his slippers and reached out to grab the tablecloth to steady himself. I saw it in slow motion – the table cloth move, the coffee mug tip, the dregs of coffee fly spectacularly to land on the keyboard and screen of my one-year-old school MacBook. I immediately powered it down and flipped it sideways so any coffee wouldn’t drain farther into the computer, but it was no use – several days later it did not power back on again.
I do all my school work in Google Drive, so aside from a few files there is very little I lost access to – thankfully. Not like when my last district deleted my Google account and I lost all my curriculum. I have my school ipad and my personal iMac desktop I moved to my classroom. Still, it’s a bit of an inconvenience. Also, I feel super guilty about frying a rather expensive computer, even if that’s just what life with a toddler looks like.
Hubster crazy: First, let me say my hubster is my rock. He gives thoughtful Christmas gifts, cooks dinner, cares for the Boy, and does his absolute best to love on me through all the hormonal crazy. However, his spring schedule is a bit nuts. He sings in one of the smaller chamber choirs at the seminary, and this weekend they are on a mini-tour up in Michigan. He’s missing a reserve drill weekend to go, so he’ll have to make that up a different weekend in January when he’s not in classes. They go on a week-long tour again in March when I’m still on maternity leave so that will be my first single parent with two kids test. He has a busy winter quarter with lots of papers and sermons that he’s stressing about, and vicarage placement is coming in April. We are hoping he will be placed locally so we won’t have to move and his army commitment won’t be affected, but until we know for sure that is an additional source of worry.
Overall he’s holding up well, but with Spartacus in a bit of a sleep regression with his routine so off, none of us are getting great nights of sleep. No one has gotten any winter crud yet – knock on wood – but it does feel like our little family unit is in the bumpiest roller coaster car and our straps are not fully fastened. At least I can soon help him enjoy his mead hobby again.
|Our first mead harvest, wrapped and ready for Christmas gifts.|
Just because crazy: Last week I cut my finger on a banana. Not on a knife, but on a real banana. It was overly ripe and the stem was very brittle, and my dry winter skin sliced at just the right angle. It is so embarrassing to cut one’s finger on a piece of produce. It’s right where my pen goes when I grade papers too, so grading final exams was both figuratively and literally painful.
I think that’s all for my long Christmas update. As I finish writing, Spartacus picked up his shark place mat and threw it frisbee-like into my mother’s porcelain Avon nativity set. Melchior just lost his arm still holding his myrrh. Now we need to go tell Boobah (Grandpa) about the latest “akident”…
Happy 2017 dear friends!