The Gill Family Webpage

Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Longest doctor appointment ever

So we had our doctor appointment this morning at 10:45. When we left at 1:37, we had orders to report to the birthing center at 7pm tonight for an induction. Looks like uterine time is up for Baby Zuzu.

Everything is fine...for now. The reason for the induction is that the supply of amniotic fluid is low which indicates a "moldy", as our doctor jokingly referred to it, or old placenta. The ol' placenta was only meant to live happily within me for about 40 weeks and now it's starting to deteriorate. Plus, the baby is getting big and it's hard for him/her to move in there. All this to say that it is better to get the little guy/gal out sooner rather than later.

I really didn't want to have to be induced, but it is what it is. Turns out, this is how I came into the world - 3 days late after an induction due to a low amount of fluid.

Well Zuzu, we'll be seeing you soon! This will probably be the last time that Baby Zuzu is referred to as "Baby Zuzu" or as a "him/her". Next time we post the gender and the name will be revealed to all, including us!

And finally, here's a picture of Everett and I as we sit here typing this. Next picture of us will be as parents.

Wish us all luck!

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Nailing it

Well no baby today, but when Zuzu comes, I really think that s/he will appreciate his/her first glance at my toes! Mom and I went to a beauty training school to get our nails done and to pass the time. I took 2 naps today and walked around a bunch. We have a doctor's appointment tomorrow so we'll see where we are then. Afterwards, we're going to have a spicy lunch. Something's gotta get this baby out!!

Monday, May 28, 2007

Playing Games

Here's my theory. The numbers 2 and 9 are my favorite and I'm quite partial to the number 29. Well perhaps Zuzu can sense this and so is waiting to be born on May 29th. Only time will tell!

It's hard sitting around and waiting. Everett cleaned out his Jeep this morning and I puttered around the house making red, white, and blue muffins (blueberry and cranberry) in honor of Memorial Day and doing yet another load of laundry. An empty basket reins once again in our bedroom! I think I'm becoming obsessed with the need for clean laundry!

This afternoon we drove to our friend's house to show off the new car and to see their little one. I was hoping that the sight of another newborn would trigger my labor, but no luck.

Tonight after dinner, Mom taught us Mexican Train, a game played with double 12 dominoes. It's a lot different from double 6 dominoes, but it's a lot of fun and it doesn't require 4 people. Mom swept the floor with us, or rather, with me. Everett did pretty well. Not me; I couldn't concentrate. I kept putting down the wrong "bone" (what the domino is called in this game) so whatever strategy I was trying to use was useless. Oh well. We still had a ball playing the game and it helped to pass the time.




Zuzu is still kicking and tossing and turning in my belly, but no (real) contractions. And so the wait continues.

Sunday, May 27, 2007

An unexpected event

Let us introduce you to the newest addition to our family: Everett's new car, a 2005 Honda Element.

This has been a long time coming. As some of you know, the car he was driving was not the most reliable drive around. We've been anticipating this purchase for months now. In fact, I told Everett that he had to get a new car before the baby was born.

Well, the car has been bought, the due date is now, we're now officially ready for the baby to come. Please.

Saturday, May 26, 2007

Grandma B arrives in Nashville

Well my Mom arrived in Nashville today, ready to witness the birth of her first grandchild. We are so happy she's here. And by the giddy look on her face, I think you can see she's happy to be here too!

We've had a few "close calls", thinking that the start of labor was only hours away. I put "close calls" in quotes because I think we just overreacted to some common pregnancy symptoms that the body goes through leading up to the final event. No real contractions yet, just a lot of confusion. I've never paid so much attention to what my belly region is doing. Every time the baby kicks or doesn't kick and every time my belly aches under its own shear weight, I get extra vigilant. All thoughts stop and all my attention is directed downward. And it hasn't been anything.

Yet.

Friday, May 25, 2007

Still just the two of us

Well I guess Zuzu isn't going to come early. I just hope s/he doesn't come too late!

I suppose I can live with the uncomfortableness of pregnancy for a bit longer, but it's the anticipation of becoming a parent that is killing Everett and I. We are ready...or as ready as we're going to be!

I've been having vivid dreams of what our child is going to look like. Last night, she was an adorable little girl with dark wavy hair. The night before, he was a cute little boy with a great big smile and no teeth.

Zuzu has been very active lately! S/he is stretching so much that I see the baby's back push out all the way on the right and the foot push out all the way on the left. And there's not much room in there so it kinda hurts. But mostly it makes me laugh! "What are you doing, Zuzu?" I ask and I get another kick in return.

Sometimes I play footsies back with the baby. I find the foot and push it, Zuzu moves the foot, I go after it again, then Zuzu kicks back at my hand! Or I push somewhere on my belly where the foot isn't and Zuzu comes on over to play and kicks me. We're having fun!

But I can't wait to touch the foot unimpeded by my belly.

Soon.

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

The waiting game

Here I sit, waiting for the real contractions to come. I have it in my head that I'll go into labor at night, which I think is when most women go into labor. So when I wake up contraction-less, I resign myself to another day filled with love.

It's a weird feeling not knowing exactly when mine and Everett's life will be turned upside down. It's hard to concentrate at work since I can't get into any multi-day projects. I spend each day doing simple analyses that can be completed that day or writing. That, and walking down the complete other end of the hallway visiting the "necessary room" (I saw a bathroom called this in a Greek restaurant tonight and I thought it was quaint). The people on my floor are so kindhearted as well. They like to make jokes about getting me a motorized scooter or mimicking my waddle/limp walk. Funny people, I tell ya!

As I type this with my laptop balanced on my belly, Zuzu is pushing the keyboard up, up, and away. Silly baby. I will miss watching the swimming and feeling the pushing when this baby comes out. But how can I miss a wiggly belly, if it won't go away?

Monday, May 21, 2007

A state of unpregnancy to come

In addition to looking forward to cradling my newborn child in my arms while loving him/her unconditionally, no matter how many dirty diapers s/he generates or how loud and often s/he cries, there are a few things that I am looking forward to when I become un-pregnant.

First there are the consumables. I cannot wait to chow down on a dressing drenched, parmesan cheese topped caesar salad with big garlicky croutons at Caesar's Ristorante Italiano. I long for the cold frothy goodness of one of the local brews. And then there's the cheese - blue stinky cheese, goat cheese, brie, and many other soft cheeses that have been restricted from my diet for almost 10 months (4o weeks is about 10 months, not 9!).

Second, there are the activities. I would say being able to walk unhindered is pretty high up on the list of activities I miss! Related to that, is hiking in the woods. I really miss hiking in the forest under the shade of many trees on a "strenuous" 3.5 mile hike. Yes, I have a favorite trail. I also really miss gardening, and even weeding. I've been doing a little bit of this, but I don't have the energy to go to full mile and so the weeds are growing with reckless abandon among my veggies and flowers. Oh well.

So it won't be long before I can eat what I want, drink what I want, and do what I want. Only about 18+ years, right?

Sunday, May 20, 2007

One more week

Well today marks Day 1 of the last week of the pregnancy...assuming the baby comes exactly on time. And that's a BIG assumption!

Whether or not the baby comes on time, this past weekend was the last one that Everett and I will have alone for quite some time. My Mom has a plane ticket for next Saturday (day before the due date). She'll be here for a while helping out, for which we are both grateful.

Everett and I had a great last weekend together! On Friday, we hung out with some friends at our house and BBQed and played Rummikube. Saturday during the day we went to the fundraiser that was being held to benefit the family homeless shelter where I volunteer. Usually, Everett and I spend the whole day there helping set up, run, and clean up after the event. This time, I couldn't do it. Everett and I worked on some things for the event beforehand though. I hear the event was a success!

On Saturday night, we went out to dinner with Amy and Dave to the Germantown Cafe. They have the best French onion soup and a GREAT view of downtown Nashville. After dinner, Everett and I walked around the neighborhood where the restaurant is located, named cleverly enough Germantown. As we walked around, I was contracting like crazy! These practice contractions are coming on fast and furious lately. I've been having dreams of going into labor as well. They're not scary dreams though. I think Nature made the end of pregnancy so uncomfortable that you'd be ready for the pain of labor because at least it's a shorter amount of time than the month or so of the extreme uncomfortableness that plagues the end of what I can only assume is every pregnancy.

Today, Sunday, we made our way to the lake. I really wanted to swim, but the water was a bit cold. We hung out on the beach for a while though, ate our picnic lunch, waded into the frigid water, and read in the sun. We're both a little red now and tired from the sun. But both very happy and are anxiously awaiting Zuzu's arrival, hopefully sometime within the next 7 days!!

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

"Next week"

Yup, that's what I've been saying when people ask when my baby is due. "Next week." Can you believe it!? What a long journey it has been!

Everett and I have been going for walks after dinner to help the baby along. It's been beautiful out and I love nights in the springtime. Few cars drive down our street and there are trees that cover the street from both sides so it's almost as if we're in the woods hiking somewhere. I can't wait to hike with Zuzu!

Last night we took a left out of our driveway instead of our usual right. This led us to ... ice cream! There's a yummy Mexican restaurant at the end of our street and I've really been wanting some ice cream! I think it's more of a "it's getting nice out" craving than a pregnancy craving, but either way, I wanted ice cream! That was the best serving of rich vanilla ice cream with light and fluffy whipped cream and deliciously sweet chocolate sauce served on a fried tortilla with these cornflake-like thingies on top that I have ever had. It was billed as "fried ice cream" on the menu.

I haven't had any weird consistent pregnancy cravings, unless you consider a strong desire to eat copious amounts of cereal (mostly corn chex) and extremely juicy fruit (pineappples, strawberries, cantaloupes, grapes, etc) weird. Oh yeah, and big chocolate chip cookies with soft centers, big chocolate chips, and crunchy outer rims. And if those cookies had walnuts or coconut in them, the better! But, I crave these cookies anyway, so I don't know if they fall under a pregnancy craving or not.

They say that the baby starts to form preferences for food while in utero based on what their Mom eats. I think Zuzu may have a good nutritional start if this is the case!

Sunday, May 13, 2007

Happy Mother's Day!

I awoke this morning greeted with flowers, breakfast, presents of chocolates, and a wonderful card from my yet to be born child! I don't know how Zuzu managed to get all that stuff without my knowing, but I suspect s/he had help!

As I stand on the threshold of motherhood, I can't help but think of the various mother figures I have in my life, especially my own mother, Mom. She's taught me a lot in my life: how to cook, how to share, how to love, and so much more. Thanks, Mom, for everything! And even though I've only known them a few years, I've learned a lot from Everett's Mom and Stepmom too. Zuzu is so lucky to be inheriting such wonderful Grandmothers!

As you can see from the picture above, this mama is getting big! About 3 times a day now someone comes up to me and proclaims that the baby will be arriving that day. When I tell them I've got 2 weeks left, they don't quite believe me. They then go on to prognosticate the gender of the child - with about 50% of them predicting a little girl and the other 50% predicting a little boy. About half of them are right. Finally, I get people who tell that I should give birth on a particular date because it's either their birthday or their child's/spouse's/cousin's/pet tarantula's birthday. All I know for sure is that by July, I will have given birth to a beautiful boy or girl sometime in May or June. Anyone want to take me up on a bet on this one?

Nestification

Well the nesting continues all around me!

At work, I've met every deadline early and have everything more or less set for a 3 month hiatus. But because I'm insane, I started data collection for a new project last week. But because I'm crazy with pregnancy hormones, I've left detailed instructions for someone else to run the subjects for me should I need to leave my post early!

At home, the house has been cleaned again and the laundry basket is once again empty! Even better than that, I was able to do some gardening this weekend. I pulled all the weeds out of the back herb garden patch, potted all the herbs and plants I had, and planted all the seedlings. Everett mowed the lawn and cleared out the back patio area. It's a beautiful space where I'll spend a lot of quality time with the bambino this summer. (Note to self: if still preggers next weekend, weed the front.)

And the car is good to go and ready to bring home the little one. Last weekend, Everett cleaned out the inside and outside of the "hot mama" - my car's name, which will take on a whole new meaning soon! This week, I took it in for an oil change, had all the fluids and belts checked out, got my emissions checked (it passed!), and sent in for my renewal registration. Finally, we replaced the broken windshield (an uninteresting story involving PVC pipes and a pimply teenager at Home Depot).

And we have our bag packed for the hospital! Changes of clothing for Everett and coming home outfits for the baby and I. Also packed are some cereal bars, some sugar free candies to suck on during labor, some games, and a DVD and VHS tape (depending on the room we get) of my favorite movie of all time, Singing in the Rain! I'm hoping the movie will make me laugh as Cosmo laughs uncontrollably spinning on the ground in one of my favorite scenes of the movie!

Thursday, May 10, 2007

Foiled!

Well I guess the foil trick isn't going to work with keeping Colmar out of the baby's crib! We were sitting in the living room when we heard the krinkle krinkle of a cat walking on aluminum foil. When we walked in there, Colmar gave us the most innocent look. Oh kitty, what are we going to do with you?

Sunday, May 06, 2007

This Weekend's Nestathon

Well there's certainly nothing wrong with my nesting instinct! This is the strong urge that women (and the females of many species) have to get their nest, uh home, ready for the imminent arrival of the newest member of the family. This weekend we cleaned the whole house (for the umpteenth time), did all the laundry (until tonight when today's clothes will fill the currently satifyingly empty laundry basket), and finally - drum roll please - finished the nursery!

As promised, here's a "tour" of the nursery filled with a lot of details that you probably don't need, but my nesting instinct compels me to tell you everything!!

First up, here's a snapshot of the nursery from the door. To the right of the crib is the newly installed bookshelf which holds the baby monitor, a basket full of CDs, and a CD/alarm clock radio which also plays some "nature sounds" - picture the sounds heard late at night camping: crickets, frogs, etc. It's actually quite relaxing. We've been playing Norah Jones' newest CD in there lately. Everett the Handyman installed an outlet just above the shelf so that everything could be plugged in without the wires needing to be all over the floor.

When you walk in the door and turn to your right, you'll find the toy bench and the bookshelf that we made. The silhouette you see is of me and my belly and was made at Christmastime at Disney. As you can see, Zuzu already has an amazing collection of books, including the Harry Potter series, some Star Wars books, a bunch of Dr. Suess books, a collection of Disney themed children's encyclopedias, and most special is the book Jane vs. the Tooth Fairy which was written by the wife of one of Everett's college buddies. You can also see hanging below the shelf are some baby pictures of our now-grown cats, Colmar and Maggie.

If you turn left when you walk in the door, you'll find the baby changing table that Everett made, the dresser we painted, the baby's laundry basket, and the diaper pail. The little shelf holds all the necessities for changing a diaper and the diapers are hanging on the back of the door. See? I told you this tour would be exciting!






To the right of the changing table is the glider with the "pharmacy" behind it on the wall shelves. Those baskets are filled with all sorts of baby meds that we're not entirely sure what to do with yet, but people (and books) have assured us that they will be good to have! Above the glider is our cool planet light that gives off the perfect amount of light for a nighttime feeding and/or changing. And of course, the rocket lamp sitting on the table is a fine light to read bedtime stories by.


Right in front of the glider is blanket central. This is where we keep all the lovely homemade items that people have made for Zuzu hanging on the quilt holder that was made by Everett's Dad and Stepmom. The blanket my Mom made for me (literally, she brought me home from the hospital in this crocheted blanket, along with my 2 sisters when it was their turn) is already packed for the hospital. You can also see our fun Dr Suess clock above the closet door.


To conclude this "tour", this is a view from the glider. Yes, I know there are a ton of pictures of the crib on this site. But consider this: this is where I've been sitting, rubbing my belly, singing songs and reading books to Zuzu for several months now. I like to sit in the nursery and daydream about a future filled with stories of baby Zuzu. Oh what adventures we'll all have!

This is where Everett and I will sit as we feed and comfort our child at all hours of the day. Where we'll sit as we listen to the mobile's gentle sounds soothe our baby to sleep (hopefully). Where we'll spend a lot of time thinking, nurturing, and playing with our little one.

I think it's a pretty good view from here.

Tuesday, May 01, 2007

Dropping the baby

The doctor confirmed this week something that I had suspected: the baby has dropped a bit! Also known as "lightening", this means the baby is starting to move into position for birth - and luckily, Zuzu's current position is head down (also confirmed by the doctor). This occurrence, along with the previously described Braxton-Hicks contraction that I felt (and am continuing to feel, I think), does not predict in any way when Zuzu will arrive. Rather they are just all signs that the pregnancy is progressing as it should towards the main event!

Here's a current picture of me, although you can't really tell that the baby's dropped - at least I can't. As you can see, I'm still "filled with love", although there's a bit more love to be filled with now! I still get taken aback whenever I catch myself in a mirror; I always do a double-take to make sure I'm seeing what I'm seeing. Even seeing myself in this picture all big and pregnant, I can't believe it. I think it's a trick of the camera that makes my belly protrude out so far. But alas, it is not. It's just my baby!

I'm standing in front of our vegetable garden which is just outside Zuzu's room (right window). We've got tomatoes (red, yellow, cherry), peppers (habaneros, jalapenos, cayenne), and cucumbers. The best part about the garden is that Everett built a watering system out of PVC pipes so that watering will be easy this summer as I'm sure my hands will be tied! We've also got a separate herb garden with basil, oregano, parsley, rosemary, mint, and thyme. I can't wait to garden with Zuzu!