Happy Birthday, Amelia

I’m not going to write a sappy, lovey-dovey, letter via blog … just not my style.

However, I really can’t believe Amelia is 2 years old today. I can recall minute by minute details of all the events that occurred two years ago … vividly. I remember where I was when my water broke at 6pm on Jan 11 2007 and where my Mom and I would have been had we actually done what we were thinking about (getting out of the house and going to Texas Roadhouse for dinner – my water would have broken at the restaurant); I remember how I was more scared to tell Greg that my water had broken and we were heading to the hospital than what was actually happening (kinda funny now, huh); I remember thinking how weird the contractions were every 5 minutes – on the dot – as we were driving to the hospital. I remember how painful it was when the doctors/nurses ‘checked me’ when I arrived – to which I was 2.5 centimeters dilated and 50% effaced and how after 2 hours of contractions I wasn’t progressing fast enough and they wanted to give me pitocin – to which I replied that must have an epidural if they’re going to go that route. And, as big as my fear of needles is (and it’s HUGE), I actually went through the whole epidural process without freaking out (which amazed my Mom); I remember how sick I was the 11 days leading up her birth – I was going through a pretty strong bout of pneumonia and was already in the hospital for 4 days prior (Jan 1-5) and was worried that I wouldn’t have the strength or energy to actually go through the physical part of labor (the pushing); I remember the delivery doctor, at just after 7am, saying that I can not go into active labor right now because she has a scheduled hysterectomy at 8am; I remember thinking … hoping that her time of delivery would be an airplane number, like 727, 737, 747, 757 in hopes that Greg might warm up to the idea of being a parent (little did I know he was already excited – since the moment I told him my water broke). I remember all the phone calls from Greg that I didn’t answer and how, around 10am, and after numerous text messages from Greg (he was getting really worried by this point) and the persistence of my Mom, I finally told Greg that she was here and he was so happy and proud to be a Daddy (which took a lot of getting used to from me) and that he couldn’t wait to come see us.  I remember the doctors putting “possible adoption” on her paper work (which I still have) and offering to take Amelia to the NICU if I did decide to place her up for adoption. I remember, holding her for the first time – alone – and thinking  and wondering if I could do this, raise a baby, possibly by myself (I still wasn’t sure where Greg and I stood with each other), if I would be able to provide everything she’ll ever need and… what was the next step. I remember feeling so … excited and elated… when Greg arrived at the hospital and seeing his reaction when he saw Amelia for the first time and how, after all her hospital papers and photos were done, he didn’t want to put her down and he didn’t want to leave us. I remember leaving the hospital TV on during the entire time (and on the Food Network or Comedy Central) in hopes that she would get used to noises and talking (it seems to have worked – she could sleep through anything). I remember trying to breastfeed and how… non-user-friendly it was (that time around, hoping the second time will be easier).

I don’t understand why it’s difficult for me to accept that Amelia is now 2 years old. Maybe it’s because so much has happened in these past two years that I feel I am still adjusting to it all (shit, I’m still adjusting to the fact that Greg and I are actually getting married NEXT WEEK!) – if only I could share the emails that Greg and I have exchanged during our … obstacles… maybe that would provide some understanding, but there’s really no point – what we said and what we do are two completely different things – i should focus on what we’re doing – which is being a family; and a very happy and healthy family.

So, here we are two years later…

Amelia - Four Minutes Old

Amelia - Four Minutes Old

Amelia - less than 12 hours old

Amelia - less than 12 hours old

Amelia - 2 days old; Going home!

Amelia - 2 days old; Going home!

Amelia - the morning of her first birthday

Amelia - the morning of her first birthday

Amelia - 4 days shy of her 2nd birthday

Amelia - 4 days shy of her 2nd birthday

Sadly, I didn’t get a picture of Amelia today, the day of her birth; Again, I forgot my camera. But, we did go out and celebrate – we went out to dinner and Amelia enjoyed her birthday hotdog.

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And then there were…

6 Days until we fly.

This time next week we will be somewhere in the Gulf of Mexico, making our way to the Caribbean Sea heading towards the Grand Cayman Island. I have no idea how giddy with excitement Greg and I (but, probably more Greg than me) will be by this point next week. Gah! I can’t believe I’ll be on a cruise ship NEXT SUNDAY!

And, it still hasn’t sunk in – my level of excitement is no where near where I feel it should be! Actually, I believe I am starting to feel a little bummed that the trip is here; I’ve been looking forward to this cruise since last February, and I won’t have anything to look forward to (vacation wise) once the cruise is said and done. Well, we are thinking of a few things but we can’t really focus on those things until March. But, still.

In other news, Greg and I will probably be attending 3-4 weddings for 2009; this past new years two co-workers (one at his office, and one at mine) got engaged  and are planning for a wedding in the fall.

Michele moved up her wedding to March 28 (from October 10); Greg is a little freaked because he’s their photographer and he doesn’t feel he will be ready (at least equipment wise) by then. I assured him that he will do fine.

This past Saturday was my wedding shower, and belive it or not Greg and I forgot our cameras! So, my cousin took at the pictures and I’m waiting for her to email them, or post them on her MySpace page – then I will share with the world.

Today we spent a few hours with Greg’s Mom. We also celebrated Amelia’s 2nd birthday with her and Greg’s brother, Ken.  It’s nice to feel comfortable around the in-laws; I didn’t feel so comfortable around my ex’s due to my ex’s father – i just hated the guy and didn’t want to within earshot of him… but, Greg’s family is nothing like my ex’s and it’s so nice and refreshing. Even Greg’s brother, Ken, has warmed up to me – giving hugs and chatting with me and Amelia! Greg’s other brother, Pat, warmed up to me at the very beginning –  we even text each other on the occasion … and it’s fun to make fun of Greg (and some of his stupid decisions from his past – like leaving his favorite job to move to NY state for a girl) – in the loving manor that we do.

So, this is the final week of ‘normal’ life before I leave for ‘vacation’ life.  Greg and I have sorta started to get our home ready – we took down the Christmas tree and other decorations! I expressed my desire to have the place clean before we leave so that when we return we won’t have anything to do other than laundry and grocery shopping (as well as copious amounts of sleep – as I am sure we’ll need it).

During the long drive home last night (from my Cousins house), I asked Greg if he was really, truly, ready to be a married man.  Of course he said yes, and I asked him how does he know. And, he said the most beautiful things to me that I actually started to tear up! Basically, he broke down his past 2 ‘serious’ relationships and why he ignored the red flags and he told me that, if he could create the ‘perfect, dream girl’ he can’t think of anything else that I already posses as a person (physical looks don’t count when you’re thinking of the ‘perfect person’). To Greg, I am his dream girl. Awesome! So, we talked a little more about being married (I was so tired and I need him to talk to me to keep my eyes open) and he says that he doesn’t feel anything will change, to him, once we’re married because, to him, we’re already married. I begged to differ and explained why (which lead to the next topic of how does he know he’s ready to be married) – Greg and/or I could walk away and leave the relationship and there wouldn’t be any ‘mess’ to clean up (read: divorce) – there’s no real commitment (a ultimate, higher level, commitment) to each other like there is to being married; to me, when we’re married it means that Greg (and I) are going to be together in every sense of the word.  To me, at least, there will be a different feeling once Greg becomes my husband and I become his wife – Greg is promising to spend the rest of his life with me (and I him). Greg has chosen me as the one that makes him the happiest and that he wants me continue to make him happy for the rest of his life. That means a lot to me. Of course, it helps to know that during our whole friendship/court-ship, as Greg and I were denying our feelings for each other; telling each other that we were not interested in a relationship, much less marriage… that we’re actually going to marry each other! I’ve said it before, and I’m going to say it again – Greg has fulfilled every dream I’ve ever had since meeting him. Something I’ve never, ever, experienced – during my nearly 30 years of life – before. Guess that Magic 8 ball really is magic! LOL

Oh look, it’s 11:30pm and I have to work this week (4 out of 5 days). Guess I should get to bed, huh?

In Memory

Aunt Ellie - Mothers Day 2005

Aunt Ellie - Mother's Day 2005

Three years ago tonight, my Aunt Ellie passed away. I remember that week so clearly. It was also at that time that Greg and I’s friendship started to grow into something more; he called me every single night checking in on me, making sure I was OK and all that caring stuff. Who would have thought that a few months later a baby was on the way… and… by Thanksgiving of 2006, less than a year after Aunt Ellie passed, April and I were both pregnant (April didn’t know yet, and I had just found out about myself but didn’t tell anyone); My Mom said our pregnancies were ‘gifts’ from Aunt Ellie.

I miss Aunt Ellie; when I told my Mom I was pregnant, she picked up to phone to call her sister, Aunt Ellie, only to remember that she’s no longer here… I feel for April, she doesn’t get to share the joys of Olivia with her Mom like I get to share the joys of Amelia with my Mom… I don’t know what I would do without my Mom, especially now that Amelia is here – even more so when Amelia first arrived…

Missing you, Aunt Ellie!

My Amazing (future) Husband

I’ve been having a shit-tacular week. Yesterday was the worse, thus far; I don’t know what tomorrow is going to be.

Greg has been very supportive with my bitching about work, the reason my week has been horrible.

So, today Greg surprised me with a gift:

Gift from Greg

Gift from Greg

Greg bought me a  Canon Digital Rebel XTi!!! How awesome is he?

Now, I just need to buy my Pro Flickr account again (and let me tell ya’ll, I’m going through some SERIOUS Flickr withdrawl! I hate not being able to create sets for my pictures!!!).

Also, as a treat, Greg bought me a package of Berger Cookies, which are so freaking amazing! I can totally see myself getting addicted to these.

!!!!!!

I’m all giddy and excited about my new camera!! I can already predict Greg and I will be ‘fighting’ over who gets to use which lens; I’ve already claimed the ‘nifty fifty’ and the wide angle. Also, I’ve been rummaging though Canon’s website, as well as B&H, Amazon, Adorama, and of course eBay for all kinds of goodies.

I think I am going to buy Greg this; it’s a “photo studio in a box”. It has some pretty good reviews on the message boards I frequent and it seems like something Greg, and/or I, would use – especially if he continues with his ‘food porn’ and Simply Carbonated blogs (Ha ha ha). Also, I have decided that I am going to buy Greg one of the lenses he (and I) have been lusting after: a macro lens. I just hope that I’ll be able to save enough money to buy it on my own, as I want it as a surprise – meaning not to be placed on the Dell card or on the bank/credit cards.

Also, tomorrow I get to leave work EARLY because the babysitter has to drive somewhere, I think in NY, to visit her sister, and I am so unbelievably thankful that I get to leave the dungeon early.

Here’s Your Sign

You know you’ve had a long day and a long week when you put the clean dishes in the refrigerator.

And I totally did that.

I washed a few pots and pans (cause I don’t put them in the dishwasher) and instead of putting them in the cabinet, I put them in the refrigerator.

It’s been one helluva week; I’ve been working extra hours (cause I like money) and searching for a place to order my wedding flowers. Work has been…. a nightmare. I am on the verge of loosing my sanity; well, what’s left of it at least. Can you believe how stupid people are out there in the USA? For example, this lady contacts us via webchat (we have that option) and ‘talks’ to someone for an extended amount of time; we caught on to her really quickly, given the history she’s had with us (in the short 2 months). So, what does she do? She ended the webchat and comes back under a different name, thinking she’s being slick, except it’s the same IP address and all the other ISP information. Oh, and I was the lucky one to chat with her the second time. And, while she’s chatting with me, she is on the phone with a fellow co-worker, trying to get one of us to believe her pathetic story. What she didn’t know is that the co-worker and myself were already aware of what this person was up to.  So, what was this person up to? Well, we sent her a disconnect notice for a past due balance of $1588 and in order to stop the disconnect order, she has to pay us $845. The customer informed us that she made the payment to one of the organizations we work with (companies like ACE, MoneyGram, Western Union, etc) and provided us with the confirmation number of her payment – well, when we contacted the organization for validation of the payment… you guessed it, there was no record of payment (and we checked every possible mean – name, phone number, address, etc); so, since she couldn’t prove payment was made, the disconnect order still stands. Then, this customer had the balls to ask if we would take a check from her! This girl has already bounced three checks with us… Sorry, we’re not accepting checks at this time. This person was the highlight of the day, sadly. But, the real sad thing is, is that I’ve had to deal with people worse than her. Yesterday I hung up the phone on a handful of people; I tell the customer, if you don’t stop with the foul language that I will end the call. Usually they stop, but I guess yesterday was the odd day. So, I’ve been dealing with people who have shit for brains and tongue. Such fun.

No concrete plans for the weekend. I had to cancel my plans with Michele about the Bridal Show on Saturday because I forgot I was working (have I mentioned I like money?). This Saturday is also a surprise 50th Birthday Party for my uncle, and I won’t be attending… due to working, and the fact that it’s all the way in La Plata.

Don’t know what I am doing on Sunday, as of yet. The plan a few weeks ago was to get together with Michele in Hagerstown to do the girlie, wedding, stuff, but I don’t know if we’re still on. I’ve sent her a text message but she doesnt’ get out of work until midnight.

I finally remembered what I wanted to ‘think outloud’ about a few posts ago: Getting a new hair cut/style! I’ve been toying with the idea of having my hair done; and I mean more than just a trim/cut. I mean STYLED. But, I am hesitant because I still haven’t decided how I want to do my hair for the wedding pictures, and since I haven’t decided on a style for my wedding pictures, I don’t know if my hair needs to be long, shoulder length, or short.

What I really need to do is stop being so indecisive and just do something.

Who am I kidding?! HA HA HA

So, is anyone else in disbelief that August is half way over as I am?! Um, like WOW! It’s already the 15th of the month, with 16 days left.

AANNDD!!!!

this week marks a WHOLE year that Greg and I have been living together as a family; a mom, dad, and baby all under one roof 24/7/365 (well, 366 since this was a leap year)!

During these past 12 months: Amelia crawled, spoke her first words, took her first steps, cut her first tooth, ate her first ‘real’ foods. Greg and I talked about our future together and became engaged; we celebrated our first Thanksgiving and Christmas together AND with our respective, extended, families (he met mine and I met his), we’ve had our first ‘disagreements’, heart to hearts, and many ‘special moments’. We’ve set future goals and plans together – all in this place we call HOME. It’s been an amazing year and I know the next 12 months are going to be just as amazing as the last twelve!

And with that, I say good night!

Not Too Bad

The day wasn’t all that bad.

I’ll tell ya, though, I have some awesome friends and family! Lisa stopped by this morning with a vat of home-made chicken and rice soup, that Greg and Amelia devoured, and Sean ran to the grocery store and bought us a few needed items (milk, bread, and OJ) as well as some ‘goodies’ (salt and vinegar chips (my favorite), Boston Market mashed potatoes, lunch meat, and soda)! Oh, I feel so loved!

This morning I was up just before 7:30, due to Amelia. I was fearful, last night, that Amelia would be up all night due to her overly-stuffed nose; she only woke up once after I initially laid her in bed, and that was sometime around 11pm and I brought her into bed with me and let her lay on my bare chest, as i leaned against the cold wall, and hoped the warmth of my skin, steady breathing, and hearing my heart beat, would calm her down and help her fall back asleep (all the while, sitting up so the snot would drain out). It worked, and she slept for the rest of the night.

Greg didn’t sleep as well as I did. He was hot and cold all through out the night and sweated a river! The sheets, blanket, and pillow cases were literally soaking wet. I was so grossed out by the wetness of the bedding that I stripped the bed, pillows, and duvet cover and washed them.

I didn’t do any cleaning, other than the kitchen, and just watched TV with Greg and Amelia. I didn’t even dress Amelia, she stayed in her pajama’s all day. Amelia ate a decent amount of food today; she ate a whole egg, some soup and a whole grilled cheese sandwich, and just a little dinner. That doesn’t sound like a lot but lately her appetite has been almost non existent. So, needless to say, I was happy to see her eating so much.

And get this! Remember me writing about the state of MD ‘stealing’ a good chunk of my refund because, according to their records, I never filed my 1999 taxes? Well, today in the mail there was a $600 check from the state! Why? Well, from my understanding, according to their confusing reasons, it turns out that I over paid state taxes for 2006 (so I got the $147 that I paid to them last year back and what I should have received as a refund). Interesting. But, I’m not going to question it; after all – who doesn’t like receiving a $600 check from the government and who is going to question the government; and, as I was told – they don’t make mistakes! HA HA HA!

Through Sickness…

Both of my babies are sick.

Both woke up this morning not feeling so well.

Both are now in bed.

Greg feels worse; his whole body hurts, so he says. He probably has a fever – he’s sweating yet he says he can’t get warm enough. Greg actually left work early, something he hasn’t done in over five years. We’re really hoping he doesn’t have the flu.

Amelia has a pretty wicked stuffy nose and is all around miserable. I gave her some nose spray (baby version, of course) and held her up right until she fell asleep (to help her breathe through her nose) and have turned on the humidifier.

So, it looks like I’ll be spending my weekend playing nurse (not in the naughty way) to my babies. Greg already feels guilty that he isn’t going to be able to help me tend to Amelia, what a loving father and husband-to-be. I’m debating if I should get a head start on the laundry tonight and pick up the living room or get some rest now, while I can, and save the laundry and cleaning for tomorrow and/or Sunday. Eh, I’ll just save it – maybe. I don’t know. At least I got a head start this morning by cleaning up the kitchen and running the dishwasher…