Greg & Morgan, Married Life, Planning

no place like home

We bought a house today. {!!!}

After a few months of searching, we found an adorable little house in the heart of Indian Trail {Union County} and made an offer on it. The negotiations concluded this morning as we signed the deed, becoming homeowners for the first time! We are thrilled at how perfectly this worked out – our apartment lease is up in a few weeks, and we are ready to transition our family into a new home. Baruch HaShem for His direction and provision every step of the way!
Time to start packing…

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Baby, Greg & Morgan, Married Life, Planning, Squicciarini family, Wedding

paddle boarding

stand-up paddle boarding on the Catawba River

Recently I’ve heard some attachment-parenters {I’m not one, but I have a few good friends who are} talk about the incredible bond they have with their babies, from co-sleeping, baby-wearing, and demand-feeding… and I want to note, for the record, that I have a pretty terrific bond with my own little girl! Sophia has never slept in my bed, and I don’t wear her in a sling all day long, but she’s absolutely a mommy’s girl. We LOVE to spend time together! She is just getting to the point of being affectionate, starting to give little hugs and wet nibbles that could pass for kisses. There are moments when I want to pick her up the second she starts fussing, or rock her to sleep every night, but in the end I have to do what I think is best for her. So far we can’t complain about the results! She’s the happiest baby I’ve ever seen – one that rarely cries, sings to us all the time, and always has a grin for strangers. I think the first big test of our parenting will come in the next few years though!

Week at a glance:

:: whisked Greg away for a birthday trip to the whitewater center {the longest we’ve ever left Sophia – my super babysitters watched her for over 5 hours!}… felt like we were newlyweds again {grin}

:: played ‘hide and seek’ with Sophia… she found a hiding place under the pillow where I could “find” her {hug!}

:: RSVP’d for a hugely important wedding on October 25

:: hosted a Bible study in my home {doing the book of Matthew from a Hebraic perspective with some wonderful ladies}

:: made wild blueberry & pecan granola with Mary

:: spent a typically productive evening with Grandma {my mom} – catching up, eating dinner, fixing the washing machine, & making baby food!

:: tested out a few veggie purees with Sophia… she’s a big fan of banana but doesn’t care for peas {yet!}

:: looked at more houses {we have some great possibilities!} and actually met with our realtor on Friday!

:: had a spontaneous family pizza date! + a visit to the brand-new Whole Foods

:: continued planning Julianna’s bridal shower {!!!}

:: met Christine at the renovated Stallings Park for walking + fiber-filled berry smoothies

:: had a pleasantly impromptu visit from Julianna in the middle of Shabbat preparations {the usual exchange: she brought me ginger-infused artisan muesli & trifle ingredients; I gave her an empty tupperware & a borrowed cookbook}

:: yet to come: hosting a new couple for dinner {Lori + Taylor} and then a quiet Shabbat by ourselves ~

=)

Baby, Greg & Morgan, Married Life, Planning, Thoughts

3.16.12

Still pregnant.

Alternating between wild elation {ANY DAY NOW!!!} and depressed frustration {WHY is it taking so long to have this baby?!} on a day to day basis. Maintaining a stable emotional level is not as easy as one might think at 41 weeks of pregnancy. Even though, really, I know this little berry will come at just the right time, the uncertainty is still tough! Especially when we have to start talking about options for how to proceed next week {41 weeks + 5 days is the unofficial cut off}.

Waiting is actually incredibly helpful… I’m so ridiculously excited about meeting this baby girl that I’ll be thrilled when labor starts, instead of nervously anticipating the pain ahead. {grin}

Greg used the expression “single parents” to refer to us recently, as in “This could be the last party we go to as single parents!” which I thought was hilarious, since we’re married… and it ended up being hard to describe our current state! Childless parents doesn’t work, because we kind of have a child… and a married couple is close, but technically we’ll always be a married couple… so we gave up and decided it doesn’t really matter anyway. {grin}

Ready for a quiet day tomorrow, savoring peaceful moments with my wonderful husband…

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I shall thank Adonai wholeheartedly, for I have completed nine months of pregnancy, and Adonai has thus far helped me and rescued me from evil mishaps that can strike a pregnant woman and her fetus. O Beneficent One, Whose compassions are never exhausted, I therefore beseech You for mercy that You sustain and support me when Raspberry comes to be born, and grant me strength when I give birth to her. Please Adonai! Sustain me that I may be saved, preserve me from sorrows, such that the baby emerge from me for peace, life, and relief. May there not be in her nor in any of her limbs any damage or deficit – neither mishap nor happenstance, neither illness nor affliction, neither pangs nor pain, neither plague nor sickness. Prepare milk in my breasts to nurse her, and grant me the favor of raising her for Your service and Your reverence. 

Adonai, hear my voice when I call, be gracious to me and answer me. Hear, Adonai, and favor me; Adonai, be my Helper! May the expressions of my mouth and the thoughts of my heart find favor before You, Adonai, my Rock and my Redeemer.

-Artscroll Ohel Sarah Women’s Siddur, p. 1005, my adaption

Baby, Greg & Morgan, Planning, Squicciarini family

3.12.11

Still waiting… {grin}

Finished my labor book today! It has a bunch of visually motivating pictures, with room for journaling thoughts during labor if I feel like it. A huge thank you to Julianna, Christine, and my mother-in-law Jeannine Bartos for showing they cared by taking the time to select + contribute pictures for me! Meanwhile, Mary has made me a 4-part playlist on iTunes, starting with energizing songs for the initial stage of labor and concluding with sweet, softer music for when the berry meets us. {!}

The amazingly friendly people at Trader Joe’s have sent me a lovely pink orchid in celebration of Raspberry! {via Julianna, who has been doing my grocery shopping} LOVE it!

Spending the rest of this evening with my darling husband, still just the two of us…

=)

Baby, Greg & Morgan, Planning, Squicciarini family

3.11.12

Raspberry Day!

As I suspected, we didn’t get to meet Raspberry today. {sigh} I was hoping she might be among the 4% of babies who arrive on their due dates… but that’s ok. Greg made this such a fun day for me though! We cooked and cleaned together, took a walk around the park and a nap, had lunch al fresco, and spent the evening at my parents’ house where Julianna had planned an entertaining girls’ night. In between all this was Twitter chatter about how I was doing. {grin} Thankfully there weren’t any emails of inquiry, although it was a treat to get a few messages from far-away friends! {please don’t email to ask if I’ve had the baby yet. When I do, it will be posted right here, and until then, it only increases the feeling of impatience!}

Needless to say, I am so EXCITED about the week ahead!

baby trivia…

  • we have a stuffed monkey sleeping in Raspberry’s crib, dressed in a white onesie.
  • Greg has never changed a diaper.
  • whenever I do important things like taking a shower or vacuuming the house, I think “this could be the last time…”
  • I put up a shelf the other day, to hold wipes & stuff, and then it fell off the wall while I was showing it to Greg later.
  • I have started to wear the same black yoga pants every day, which is something I had promised myself would never happen. {but they are so comfy…}
  • now that the due date has officially passed, we’re starting to hear all kinds of ideas about encouraging labor to start! Apparently my in-law-in-laws, the Spurlocks, claim broccoli is a fail-proof method {eating it, I mean}. Right now I’m all about letting things take their course naturally, but as the week goes on I may change my mind about that. {wink}

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Baby, Greg & Morgan, Married Life, Planning, Wedding

2.23.12

The babymoon was a huge success… the most relaxing + delightful two days we’ve spent together in a while! Certainly an idea we’d recommend to other couples about to have their first child.

Sunday morning we packed overnight bags {bright VeraWeekender’ for me; masculine leather duffel for Greg} and headed uptown after lunch. We arrived at the Westin – recognized the lobby where we spent some memorable time last year tweeting about our wedding – checked in, and took the elevator to the top! Greg had pulled a few strings to get us the Presidential Suite… a mind-boggling amount of space, plus incredible views of the city from three sides. For dinner, Greg took me to Vivace on Metropolitan Avenue, a restaurant I’ve wanted to try since we got married last year! We both ordered delicious gluten-free entrees and then shared dessert…  Greg, true to form, had arranged for berry sorbet in the shape of a baby bump to magically appear at our table. {!}

For evening entertainment, we watched The Ten Commandments, which Greg had never seen. {Julianna’s response to this plan: “You’re taking Charlton Heston with you on the babymoon??”} It’s an excellent film, of course. And it fit so well with our portion readings in Exodus the past few weeks! At first, I thought it was hilarious that we would bring The Ten Commandments on a romantic getaway, but on second thought it’s proof of how we have adapted our lifestyle for the responsibilities of parenthood – in this case, with family-friendly films.

While we were having breakfast in bed Monday morning, I found pictures on my phone from when we did the same thing last year, the morning after our wedding, at the same hotel! {Not surprisingly, my husband ordered the same breakfast. He is a man of habit indeed.} Later we visited the gorgeous Westin workout facilities, where I walked a slow half mile while Greg ran effortlessly on the treadmill next to me. {How does someone with a desk job stay so fit… that’s what I want to know.}

We had no schedule on Monday… just a blissful day of enjoying each other’s company. We ended up having a late lunch at Fuel {vintage pizza place uptown} where we split a gluten-free pie, ate with our fingers, sipped soda, and totally felt like two teenagers. {grin} Between bites we talked about the ways Raspberry will affect our lives, from social events to budgeting. It’s hard to have an accurate picture of exactly how our lives will change! But we’ve agreed to view these changes as good, not like we’re missing out on anything because of the privilege of raising a child.

It seemed appropriate to pick up a gift for the berry, since she was very much the focus of our trip, so we went to several baby stores at the mall and found something cute for her. It was an odd feeling – on the one hand, this was a chance for us to have time “alone,” before kids… knowing that it will never be quite like this again, but on the other hand, we are constantly aware of Raspberry’s presence! She did come with us. In fact, she’s always between us, if you know what I mean. She has a prenatally precocious way of waving her hands when she hears herself talked about. So it’s kind of impossible to see ourselves as simply a carefree married couple – we are a family of three, B”H.

Heading home Monday night, we thought the babymoon was over… but it wasn’t! Julianna had not ONLY made us dinner, but also prepared an elaborate cheese plate for us to snack on. {hug!} A perfectly thoughtful end to a perfectly splendid time.

=)

Baby, Greg & Morgan, Married Life, Planning, Squicciarini family

1.30.12

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“To some degree, the first pregnancy spells the end of carefree youth – very important to Americans. The maidenly figure goes gradually into eclipse, and with it goes sprightly grace. Both eclipses are temporary but very real. The woman realizes that after the baby comes there will be distinct limitations of social life and other outside pleasures. No more hopping into the car on the spur of the moment, going anywhere the heart desires and coming home at any odd hour. The same budget has to be spread thinner, and her husband’s attention, all of which has gone to her at home, will soon be going to two.”
Dr. Spock’s Baby and Child Care, by Benjamin Spock, M.D & Michael Rothenberg, M.D.
{originally published 1945}

A profound quote from Dr. Spock… surprisingly accurate! I like how he describes the loss of “maidenly figure” and “sprightly grace.” Couldn’t have chosen better words myself. {grin}

Updates:
1. We have decided Raspberry will spend her first few weeks in a bassinet rather than our giant crib. This will save us space and be a LOT easier for me to use, as well as adding flexibility to our living arrangement by allowing us to move her around. The crib is safely tucked out of the way until she is ready for it.
2. Raspberry’s grandma {Mums} gave me a matching set of Vera Bradley diaper bags! There’s a smaller “purse” sized one for quick outings, and a much larger tote bag for day trips, both in the Very Berry print. Love them!! So we practiced this weekend by filling up the small bag and taking it to Bella Torah with us. {grin} I think we had everything we needed… with the obvious exception of the berry herself.
3. Speaking of which, we’re down to 6 weeks! Unbelievable how quickly she’ll be here.
4. Two important purchases need to be made in the next 6 weeks: first, a car seat; second, a washer & dryer. Both essential to living with an infant!
5. My appointments with Leigh have increased to every two weeks. I’ve gained 23 pounds so far, and recently had to get a few longer tops… even my maternity shirts were too short! Now I realize what my pregnancy books were saying about slowing down – it almost feels like I’m in slow motion. And the dreaded pregnancy waddle has arrived. {grin}

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