Monday, March 22, 2010

Baby Bump

Due to the popular demand for the infamous "baby bump" photos, see below. Neither are the best photos of me, but hey, we'll take what we can get. This is for the benefit of future posterity.

I had planned to take a "belly shot" every week. Turns out my procrastination skills also extend into pregnancy. So, instead of 21 pictures, I have a whopping two.

Here is me, thinking I was showing big time at a little over 16 weeks:

Here is me, thankful for waist-expansion Motherhood Maternity technology, at almost 21 weeks (20 weeks and 5 days to be exact):

I am half way there! In another four and a half months we'll have a new Reese in the house.

I am starting to feel like I look a little more pregnant, but mostly I just feel like people look at me and think, "Wow, she's put on some weight. Maybe she shouldn't consume her body weight in school-fundraiser-boxes-of-Krispy-Kreme-doughnuts." Come to think of it, it's hard to know how much of this new found tummy of mine is baby, and how much really is Krispy Kreme coated lard.

Here are some of the fun parts of pregnancy for me right now:
--Feeling the little saucer spin around in there. He is getting a lot stronger, and it makes me so happy every time I feel him move.

-- Buying and receiving adorable baby things. It is so much more fun to look at baby stuff now that we know we're having a boy.

-- Feeling like I have 100 times more energy than I did in my first trimester. I have been extremely blessed, and I do mean EXTREMELY blessed, and have felt pretty terrific throughout my entire pregnancy. I felt a little nauseated during the first trimester, but for the most part as long as I had a snack every couple of hours I was good to go. I only threw up once. I know. Amazing. I really am so thankful. Most of my nausea was at night time, which was also great because I didn't have to stress with morning sickness while I wrestled adolescents in the manana. Even though I felt great, I was tired ALL of the time. I seriously felt like I could sleep all day and not sleep enough. The last couple of weeks that has gotten so much better. I am still really tired in the morning, but morning crankiness is nothing new for me, so I don't really think that's a symptom of pregnancy. Last week I started going back to the gym. I talked to my doctor about it at my ultrasound and he said it was fine. I had planned to keep working out throughout my entire pregnancy, but my first trimester fatigue changed those plans. I feel like I have so much more energy now that I am being more active.

Some of the stresses of pregnancy for me right now:
-- I can't wear my wedding ring anymore because my ring finger breaks out into an intense rash every time I do. That means if someone I don't know actually does suspect I'm pregnant (rather than an over-consumer of Krispy Kreme goodness) they will probably think I am an unwed teenager (I am still getting mistaken for a student at my high school) and give me the stare down.

-- What are we going to name this kid? Seriously. Have you considered the tremendous amount of pressure that comes with choosing the name someone will be called by for the rest of their LIFE? Add to that the fact that every name I love Chad isn't thrilled with, and every name Chad loves isn't my favorite, and what do we have? Disaster. I don't know if 4.5 months is enough time to resolve this issue.

-- Waking up in the middle of the night to use the "facilities." This has never been an issue for me, and interrupted sleep isn't fun. I guess this is preparation for when the little guy arrives and interrupted sleep becomes non-existent sleep.

Saturday, March 06, 2010

Buying Blue

This is what I bought after our ultrasound yesterday:

This sweater is absolutely precious (and it doesn't have a spot on it, so obviously I did something wrong when I took this picture).

This is seriously the SOFTEST fabric. I am in love with it. It's so fun to think a little baby will be wrapped up in it soon.

It's a boy!!! While I must admit that the idea of buying hair bows and dance shoes was very appealing, I am beyond thrilled to know I'm going to have a little boy to cuddle in about 5 months. I always wanted to have a boy first, so my kids could have a protective big brother. I also don't think much can replace the precious look of excitement Chad had when he saw the evidence appear on screen that we are having a son.

We had quite the scare on Friday, when I got a message from the doctor's office asking me to call and reschedule my ultrasound appointment. It said they had an available appointment at 11:00 a.m., but funny how my phone is off all day and I didn't get the message until 3:00. My appointment was supposed to be at 4:00, and Chad had already taken off the afternoon so he could be there. I knew we weren't going to get to see our baby today, and I was so disappointed. When I called, the receptionist said if we didn't care which doctor did the ultrasound, we could be seen today. Um, HELLO! YES! So, tragedy avoided, we drove over to Greenville and got to find out what we were having as planned.

It was the biggest relief to see our little guy all curled up in there. Our ultrasound technician, and the doctor, both said that our baby boy is developing just as he should. So far, he looks safe and healthy. I felt the baby move for the first time this week, so that has been priceless and fun, too.

It was so fun to watch all of the little boys at the Kinston basketball game last night and think about how soon we're going to have one of our own.

Now on to the name game . . . and setting up the nursery. Any favorite boy names?

Thursday, March 04, 2010

It's a . . .

Ha! Had you fooled, didn't I? That's not on the news agenda until tomorrow, remember?

In the mean time, let me tell you about a pleasant surprise from the teaching realm the last few days.

I have been incredibly frustrated this school year by my students' overall lack of ambition. While I teach a lot of lovely, exceptional folks, I also teach some who are . . . well . . . not lovely, nor exceptional.

I have always known I would not be an easy teacher. That isn't my style. I know I am a tough grader, and I have high expectations for my students.

My first year teaching, that really worked for me. I probably wasn't tough enough classroom management wise (a pretty typical thing for a beginning teacher), but I feel like I pushed my students to learn. I think students generally still liked me, and I had a good rapport with the kids. I miss Lehi High School a lot. In retrospect, things I complained about, I should be shot for complaining about. I had it pretty posh.

My second year teaching was interesting. The first semester I spent in immense culture shock, but I still loved my students, and very little changed as far as the way I pushed them academically. I feel like the year went well, once I adjusted to my new environment.

Enter my third year teaching. I am still the toughie I've always been, but I've been met with a lot of resistance this year. I don't know what is different, but something is. In the past, I've felt like students haven't loved working hard (we're talking about teenagers here), but I feel like they've known I am pushing them because I care, and they've stepped up to the challenge (obviously not ALL of them, but most of them). This year, I feel like I've been met with a lot of resentment.

I have a lot of students who would be content to do nothing. This hurts me. It's like there is absolutely no desire to learn. No spark. Nada. Nothing. Sadly, a lot of these kids are honors students (which don't even GET me started on that).

At the start of this semester, I had a student tell me she was scared of me.

This has made me sad.

I have always known I didn't want to be the easy teacher, but I also didn't want to be the "mean" teacher.

Well, this week I announced my pregnancy to my classes, and I have had a much needed self-esteem boost the last couple of days.

So many of my students from last year, and even from last semester, have come by to tell me how excited they are for me. Even the little girl from last semester who was mad about the C on her research paper stopped by my room to give me a big hug and tell me she thought I was going to be an amazing mom. Even my students from this semester have been really cute and excited. I know that this isn't really that big of a deal, but to me this was just a testament that I haven't completely desecrated my relationship with these kids, and that maybe they did have a positive experience in my class.

These are my favorite reactions to my pregnancy announcement:

"Oh, is that why you've been so moody?"
--Oh, if I could only tell you what has really been making me so moody. Most of it involves dealing with you.

"But, Mrs. Reese, if you're pregnant . . . why aren't you getting any bigger?"
--Should I hug you now, or later? Oh, how you've made my little heart soar with happiness.

"How do you know for sure that you're pregnant? Did you take a pregnancy test?"
--No, I just thought I would announce it to a classroom full of adolescents before I found out for sure.

They make me laugh. Despite how hard my job has been for me this year, days like the last couple remind me that I do enjoy being a teacher.
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