Thursday, August 9, 2012

Back in Business

Long time no see!  But we are almost back in business for bowling.  We haven't been bowling in over 4 months!!!  It's insane to think that this is a true fact.  But allow me to give you a quick run down on the last 4 months...

I gave birth to a beautiful baby girl on April 4th.  We bowled shortly before this and I had terrible scores, but Jared rolled over 200 one game.  Ever since baby P has come into our lives, we've been incredibly busy.  I was on maternity leave for 8 weeks, then started back to work.  Thanks to my awesome boss, Fr. Mark, I was able to bring P with me so I could continue nursing her as long as possible. 

Just this week, P started "preschool" (also known as "daycare" when you're only 4 months old).  So, Jared and I have time again to go bowling without trying to work in a nap for P or nursing her between frames!  So keep your eyes peeled for some scores soon!

We'll probably make our way back to the lanes next week!

Thursday, April 12, 2012

I was a Psych Major

Did I ever mention that I was a Psychology major in college?  Well, I was.  And I find human behavior fascinating.  In particular, I find it fascinating to try to observe where everyone's little neuroses rear their heads.  I believe that we all have them, some of us just hide them better than others.

So, one of the interesting things I've noticed about bowling alleys is that they are like a breeding ground for neuroses!  Bowling is an activity that many people can enjoy for many reasons.  For some folks it is truly about the sport: the excitement of rolling a relatively small object down a long lane and knocking down 10 pins is thrilling!  For others, though, it is about the comfort of routine and repetition.  This is where this guy comes in...

OCD guy

Yes, he is stretching out before he begins his (at least) weekly games.  Nearly every Friday that Jared and I have been to the lanes, this guy is also there.  If I were the diagnosing-without-proper-information-kind, I would guess that he has a fairly severe case of Obsessive Compulsive Disorder.  Although I have no idea if it transfers over to his everyday life, I know that it is fierce at the lanes.  He wears the same exact outfit every week.  He bowls on the same side of the alley every week, within a few lanes of where he was the previous week.  He bowls at the same time every Friday afternoon.  And his approach is exactly the same every roll.

The very first time that Jared and I encountered him at the lanes, I also thought that maybe he had some kind of social disorder, but now I don't.  He was very odd and awkward.  Now, though, I have seen him interact with plenty of folks, including us, and do not believe that he has any other personality disorders.  But he's still pretty interesting to observe.

The guy behind him in the picture (the one in the red shirt) is also a strange bird.  I think he may actually have some kind of developmental delay or disorder.  He's also fairly socially awkward.  He bowls every Friday afternoon, too, with the same friend (not pictured).  When we first noticed red-shirt-guy, the most interesting thing about him was that he was a fairly good bowler who often changed his own scores.  He probably averaged about 160 or so; but whenever he didn't get a mark (a strike or a spare), he would walk over to the computer keyboard and change his score to a mark.  It was very strange, almost as though he couldn't handle the truth about his own bowling abilities.

Anyway, recently he hasn't been changing his scores.  He's just improved with his bowling.  It's refreshing to see growth at the lanes!

All this is to say, though, that consistency is key to being a good bowler.  I've mentioned this before, in particular about inconsistency being the worst thing you can bring to a game.  But it's almost as though those who tend toward OCD or other disorders where routine and order are favored will be better bowlers than those who do not have these tendencies.

Make no mistake, this is not about control in the sense that everything is rigid and unchanged; but it's about consistency.  The fluid movements of someone's approach are consistent, not controlled.

Keeping your body aligned, your eyes focused, your approach the same, your follow through precise is exactly what wins games.  When Jared and I are bowling and we aren't being consistent, we often watch each others' form to see where we are off a little.

It's not a very scientifically based argument I'm making, but I would be curious to see if there are any studies out there on bowling being good therapy for some psychological disorders.

Anyway, I hope that someone out there finds this as interesting as I do!

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

I was right!

Well, it turns out that I was correct in assuming that our last trip to the lanes would be our last trip for a while...

We were blessed to give birth to a precious daughter on April 4th!

She's waking up from a nap now, so this will be short and sweet.

She's amazing and incredible and perfect.  We love her more than we ever knew we could.  And I am sure that we will continue to discover new and different ways that we love her in the coming days, weeks, months, and years.

We are so grateful to all of our family and friends for all the prayers, love, and support you've given us and our "Spare."  Please continue to pray for us as we transition from being a family of two to a family of three (plus our fur babies, of course!).

Not sure how often I'll get to blog, but hopefully we'll be back at the lanes soon!

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Our Last Roll...

... for a while, at least!

We went bowling on March 23rd, and I have a feeling that will be our last trip to the lanes for a little while.

Jared had another great day bowling.  I had an alright day bowling.

Here are our scores!

Game 1

Game 1

Game 2

Game 2

4 bagger 1

During Game 3, Jared rolled 4 strikes in a row!


And that resulted in another 200 club moment!

Game 3

Game 3

Game 4

Game 4

So, at least I won the first game.  I have been winning only 1 out of 4 lately, but that's okay, because I am very pregnant at this point.  My fingers don't fit inside my own bowling balls anymore, so I am rolling house balls.  Not to mention, my center of gravity changes almost daily.  That, and I have my very own 7-8 pound bowling ball in my belly that I carry around all the time.

Hopefully the next time I post scores it will be of our first family trip to the lanes with our little Spare!

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Let's make like a baby...

... and head out!

No, we aren't having our baby right now.  But the baby is definitely getting ready to head out, literally.  The past couple of weeks I have been feeling "lightening." Within the pregnancy/birthing community this basically means that the baby is descending into the pelvis; and as s/he does so, there are many sensations that are reminiscent of "lightening," like little shocks throughout your pelvis.  It's only been straight up uncomfortable once or twice, but the rest of the time it kind of feels like pressure, especially on my bladder!

So, anyway, I would like to clarify something about the photos below.  Last week (week 37), I discovered just how strong my stomach muscles are.  I knew I had been experiencing some lightening and I could feel my belly getting lower, but I couldn't actually see the difference in pictures.  So, I made the conscious decision today (week 38) to relax my stomach muscles- hence there's a very noticeable difference in the height of my belly from last week to this week.  In order to walk around and carry this baby without killing my back, I unconsciously flex my core muscles (even though they are crazy stretched out); as a result, I don't appear to be carrying as low as I am in reality.

Anyway, enjoy the photos!

Week 37
Week 37

Week 38
Week 38

Monday, March 19, 2012

St. Paddy's Day Boil

Some of our friends hosted a St. Patrick's Day crawfish boil on Saturday!

It was so much fun to see folks we hadn't seen in a while, plus the crawfish were delicious, as was the sausage, corn, and potatoes!

Here are a few photos of our delicious fare.

Crawfish 1
The boys stirring up the crawfish

Crawfish 2
Buster, Guardian of the Crawfish Boil

Crawfish 3
The spread

This was my first crawfish boil of the season!  And, unfortunately, it may be my last.  Every April, my church hosts a crawfish boil as a large fellowship event; but this year, I will be on maternity leave.  Plus, the boil is only about a week or two after our due date, so I don't think that I will be up for it, even though maternity leave does not mean that I can't show up.  I just know I won't feel like going.

Anyway, I am so glad that I got to have some.  And because there is so much sodium in crawfish boil (the actual boil, not the crawfish), I didn't have a whole lot.  But what I had was delicious!

Thanks, Michael & Laurie!

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Bowling with the Hubs

This past Friday, we went bowling!  Although neither of us really wants to admit it, we are nearing the end of our time bowling, at least for a little while.  And any of these trips to the lanes could be our last one until after the baby comes.  So, we are trying to take full advantage.

We both did relatively well on Friday.  It was a day where we both got turkeys!!!  It was exciting!

Here are some photos to show how our potential last day of bowling went...

0316 Game 1
Game 1

0316 Game 2
Game 2

During Game 2, I got my turkey! Jared was able to capture the moments following!

0316 A Turkey 1

0316 A Turkey 2

0316 Game 3
Game 3

Game 3 was the game where Jared got his turkey! And he was very, very proud...

0316 J Strike
This was the strike that landed him the turkey.

0316 J Muscles 1
Strutting his stuff

0316 J Muscles 2
A little more stuff strutting

0316 J Muscles 3
The final strutting of stuff

0316 J Turkey 1
And the fun graphic of Jared's turkey

0316 Cutie

At some point during Game 3, this sweet little girl came over to us and smiled at me and pointed at my belly. After a fun little exchange that involved the words "baby," "big," and "belly," her dad came over and apologized for the distraction. She was super cute and sweet!  Based on the photo of our scores, I think it happened right after the 4th frame!

0316 Game 4
Game 4

Overall, it was a great day bowling!  We ended up spending the rest of the evening with our good friends Chris and Amy!  They came over to our new house for the first time and ended up staying and talking about all the fun of living in SE Louisiana!

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Just for Comparison

I pulled these two photos up side by side on my computer this morning...

Week 9 small Week 36 small

Pretty crazy...

Weeks 35 & 36

The past couple of weeks have been kind of rough.  First off, carpal tunnel syndrome during pregnancy is a real threat to some of us!  I have developed it in the last couple of weeks and it's pretty painful.  Mostly at night, my hands and forearms start to get tingly and numb.  I also swell regularly in my hands and have some muscle weakness and joint pain.

We started our weekly OB appointments last week.  At the first one (the 35 week appointment), the Dr. thought that I might have developed pre-eclampsia (high blood pressure during pregnancy).  Here's why: my bp was slightly higher than it normally is; I was complaining of swelling in my hands and feet; and I had gained about 5 pounds in a week.  So, I had to do a really fun lab test, as well as give a few blood samples!  I'll spare you the details (no pun intended).

Thankfully, the results for pre-eclampsia came back negative!  It turns out that I just had too much sodium all week (too much eating out at restaurants and I had a convention).

At our 36 week appointment (just yesterday), everything was looking very good!  We had another ultrasound, which was exciting and fun.  The ultrasound tech plugged in the three measurements needed to estimate Spare's current weight (length of thigh bone, circumference of skull, and circumference of abdomen) and out popped 6 lbs., 10-11 oz!!!  That's right folks, we're having a giant Williams baby, just as I suspected!

Other good news included that I have begun dilating, but not a whole lot.  This is good because we would LOVE to make it to Easter day around noon before going into labor.  Of course, that's not in our control, at all (and we know it), but it's a good sign for us.

As a side note, Jared's church threw us a wonderful shower last Friday night!  So much fun!  I didn't have my camera with me, but I am fairly certain that some of the wonderful ladies at the church will tag me in some FB photos soon!  They were so wonderful to us.  We got TONS of handmade gifts, which were amazing and beautiful and made me want to learn to sew, crochet, and knit!  And we also got a bunch of stuff off our registry.  The generosity of these ladies overwhelmed me!  Not to mention, if you even say the word "potluck," 50 dishes appear in the Fellowship Hall!  It really was a good time.

On the whole, I am feeling a lot more tired this week.  I have just enough energy to do what needs to be done at work, come home, and put on comfy clothes.  Before, I used to be able to do a few things around the house before getting so tired, but now I am feeling a lot more tired without being able to get a few things done.

I am sleeping okay, especially now that I've figured out how to manage the carpal tunnel at night.  I am still walking about 3 or 4 days a week, with the dogs.  I think this helps with the swelling, but definitely contributes to making me tired.

Lastly, my belly is getting bigger each week.  Here are the photos from the last two weeks!

Week 35
Week 35

Week 36
Week 36

Three Weeks of Bowling

In the last four weeks, we have bowled three times.  We would have bowled last week, but Jared had tweaked a muscle after helping move some nursery furniture for my in-laws.  Alas, no bowling.

But the three weeks before that we had some awesome games!  Take a look below!

This was on February 17th.

New Balls

We ordered some new balls, and they had finally arrived!

Feb 17, Game 1

Game 1

Feb 17, Pin Action

Love taking the new camera bowling!

Feb 17, Game 2

Game 2

Feb 17, Game 3

Game 3

Feb 17, Game 4

Game 4

These games were played on February 24th. Obviously, we forgot the new camera.

Feb 24, Game 1

Game 1

Feb 24, Game 2

Game 2

Feb 24, Game 3

Game 3

Feb 24, Game 4

Game 4

This was from March 2nd. Again, we forgot the new camera...

Mar 2, Game 1

Game 1

Mar 2, Game 2

Game 2

Mar 2, Game 3

Game 3

Mar 2, Game 4

Game 4

Mar 2, JRW

And the reaction to Game 4's 200.

Needless to say, we were very excited when Jared bowled a 200!  He's done it one other time, more than a year ago.  He bowled a 212.

A few things to note...

The new balls have taken some getting used to.  Initially, Jared's holes were a little rough around the edges (insert funny innuendos here, and for the following paragraph).  So, we took it back to the pro shop and the guy sanded them down.  And the next week was much better.  But the March 2nd date was very rough for me.  I had had too much sodium that week, and neither of my balls were fitting right.  The finer holes on the new one were way too tight; and my old ball was barely much better.  So, we kind of decided that we'd try to keep bowling until Spare arrives, but I would most likely have to use a couple of house balls with large to x-large finger holes.  We are assuming that the swelling in my hands will go down after Spare arrives!

So, there you have it!  Three out of four weeks ain't too bad.  I'll definitely post again, IF we go bowling!

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Baby Shower

About a week and a half ago, my friend Skye, my sisters-in-law Sarah and Beth, and I flew to Dallas for a baby shower in my honor!  Although the flight was rather rough, we made it there with plenty of time to spare (pun totally intended).  We got to hang out with my family for a bit before the shower began.  The hostesses were all related to me: my stepmom, my aunt, my cousin, my stepsister, 3 of my other sisters-in-law, and Skye.

It was a wonderful time with SO MANY PEOPLE!  I think that the invitation list was over 60 women, and about 2/3 came!  It was wonderful to see so many of my friends, family, and my mom's friends, too.  The women were all insanely generous, and Jared and I took about 3 or 4 days to go through all the wonderful gifts to make sure that things were washed and everything had its place.

It was an incredible party.   Did I mention that it was an LSU baby shower???  My sister-in-law, Marysia, designed the invitations with a purple and gold theme in mind.  They were awesome.  And all of the other hostesses did an amazing job with the decorations, party favors, and cake!  Some of the guests even got us LSU themed gifts!  It was so much fun!

Table 1
Purple & Gold Stroller Cookies for party favors

Table 2
The Table

The Delicious Cake from Panini in Dallas TX

Cake Server
Cake Server that belonged to my grandparents

Bowling set up
Awesome bowling game my hostesses came up with

Bowling with Wes
Getting used to bowling with a baby in my arms

Moms & Babies
Two of my sweetest friends and their babies

Me & Camille
My best friend from high school, Camille

Fruit Salad
The best damn fruit salad in the world- made by my aunt

Me & Mags
Me and my sister-in-law, Margaret, who is due about a week before me

Many, many thanks to my friend, Skye, who took all of the pictures of the shower. Y'all should check out her blog!  She posted on the shower, too!

And tons of thanks to all who hosted and all who came to the shower!  It was so wonderful to see y'all!