28 May 2012

BratFest Weekend!

Memorial Day weekend in Madison means it's also time for "The World's Largest Bratfest!"  In the past we've just gone and enjoyed the brats and live music, but this is also an event to raise money for charities, specifically for us, our Boy Scout troupe.  For every hour a person works on behalf of our troupe, they get about $8.  Sign ups happen early, like Feb., so we can get the spots.  This is basically the only fundraiser our scouts do.  We thought this year would be a good year to "get our hands dirty" and join in the volunteering fun!

We also signed up about  5 weeks ago to walk the 5K Brat Walk (as part of the 5K Bun Run.)  It's part of the being healthy thing we've been trying to do.  When I signed up to do all these things, I had no idea I'd be/I was pregnant!  Thankfully it wasn't really an issue, even with morning sickness.

Friday night into Saturday morning it rained and thunder stormed all night long.  Sariah was in our room most of the night and I woke up about 5 or 6 times, so I was kinda of tired, but ready to walk!  We arrived at 8:45am, about the same time the rain stopped.  It was overcast with a nice breeze, perfect for a walk!  Here we are pre-walk (sorry about being in front of the Budweiser sign!)
My awesome (and 21 week pregnant) friend Miriam, walked with us!  We're super pregnant women!
Sariah took this picture of the 3 of us, pre-race.
The race started about 9:30.  We were obviously in the back since we were walking.  The kid's thought it'd be fun to hold hands for awhile.

The race went around the dog park, through the parking lot, and up and around the neighborhood.  There was a lot of up for awhile!  We weren't even to mile 1 when the first runners crossed the finish line.

Here we are at the top of the hilly section and headed back down.  If you squint, you can see the capital ahead.
Here we are finally walking past mile marker 3!  We're almost to the end!
Victory!  We finished in just over an hour.  I think the first mile was the longest, but after that we caught a good pace.  We weren't the last over the line for sure.  The kids were really good in their strollers and enjoyed the ride.
It was about 10:30 when we finished and Doug's grill shift didn't start till noon, so he took Sariah over to do some ridiculously over-priced carnival rides.  They did a dragon roller coaster & the ferris wheel.  Bryson went over and claimed us a table where we would camp out until 2pm.

Isn't this the cutest t-shirt that Bryson is wearing?  I found it at Target and had to have it.  Esp. because Bryson loves saying "hotdog!"
The kids both ate 2 hot dogs each, corn on the cob and a cup of ice cream.  Doug ate 3 brats, and I ate 1 brat and about 2.5 ears of corn on the cob (morning sickness doesn't really agree with greasy meat, but corn?  nom nom nom!)  We got free brat and soda coupons for walking the 5K, and they were put to good use!
Doug's grill shift went from noon to two.  By then the clouds had parted and the sun was out, so even though he put on sunscreen, he was pretty toasted when he was done.  I managed to walk by and snap a picture of my man grilling meat.  Yum.
The kids and I parked at our table and enjoyed the live music and tried to stay in the shade.  We had 4 different groups of people (including one single mom with triplets!) join us while we were waiting.  Considering we were full and there wasn't really much to do, the kids we're really good while we were waiting for Doug to be done.

Here's Doug and Sariah hanging out afterwards.  We get free t-shirts for volunteering and for walking the 5K, yay free shirts!
Monday (today) I headed back to Bratfest by myself for my volunteer shift.  I opted to be a "wrapper" basically putting the brats in buns and wrapping them in paper to sell.  I got assigned a table with a very nice retired woman and 4 spunky teenagers.  Mainly I opened the buns and put the brat in and handed it to someone to wrap.  I was also the unofficial person to make sure we always had buns in our tray.  It was a lot of wrapping really fast, then waiting around for more brats for awhile, but it got pretty busy after noon.  (My shift was 11-1)  Here's a couple quick pics I snapped while we were wrapping.  I wanted to get some of the un-bunned brats in the pic.
The only pic of me, poorly & quickly taken.  Along with my retired friend who's name I sadly can't remember!
I was kind of worried about smelling those brats for such a long period of time and getting sick, but it didn't really hit me until an hour and a half in, and the last half hour went by super quick!  Besides the shirt, we also get a "brat buck" good for a brat or corn or soda and a free ice cream coupon after we volunteer.  I opted for another corn on the cob because I didn't think I could stomach a brat (my brat consumption was down this year, with good reason, but is a little sad because I do enjoy a good brat with pickle relish and "Official World Record" mustard.  Maybe next year!)  The corn was so tasty this year!
I also got some mint explosion ice cream from Chocolate Shoppe.  It was enjoyable to eat on my way back to the car!
We had a lot of fun this year.  As of today at 2:45 the brat eaten total was 140,400 (Bratfest holds the world record of most brats consumed in a 4 day period at 209,376.)  They might not be on target for breaking the record this year.  On the upside, we will definitely be volunteering again next year and hopefully walking (or running?) the 5K again.  We've had a blast!  Ya'll are welcome to come visit us next year for all the fun!

24 May 2012

Pregnancy FAQ

So in an attempt to blog more, here's some info about what's going on with me.  It's kind of been a crazy Spring!

So the baby is due 12th of January.  That puts me at 7 weeks on Saturday.  It might have been a little early to announce, but it wasn't anything everyone was going to notice since I feel pretty gross right now.  So I thought it best to just go ahead and tell family and everyone else.  Plus I can't keep a secret, not when the news is this great!  

Three has always been our magic number (even when I tried to convince myself one way or the other that it wasn't.)  So while we weren't actively "trying" to get pregnant, we weren't stopping it either.  I was kind of hoping this would happen a couple of months from now so the kids would be 3 years, 2 months apart exactly, but I'll take what I'm given.  So yes, the baby is due the day before Bryson's birthday, we'll see how that plays out.  I'm thinking we'll have to celebrate Bryson's birthday a couple weeks early, just in case.  

Some of you who know about my medical concerns might be wondering how this all plays out.  First off, let me explain a bit of what's been going on in case you don't know, or maybe my (well meaning) husband led you to believe that my head is about to explode.  Back as early as right after Christmas last year I was starting to experience visual auras, not unlike what some people get with migraines, but without the headache.  This went on for a couple months, getting increasingly worse, until one of my friends mentioned that maybe I was getting diabetes (I'm not).  So since it was about time for a physical anyway I emailed my doctor and asked if we could do the blood work first.  When it came back normal, she suggested I visit the eye clinic (which I was due for a check up there, as well.)  

After seeing my normal eye doctor, he observed swelling of my optical nerves, so he referred me to the University of Wisconsin eye clinic for further tests.  Which they did, lots and lots of further tests, including a super fun (not) MRI and a lumbar puncture.  The diagnosis?  Psudotumor Cerebrei, which is a fancy way of saying there's nothing in my brain causing the swelling, but it's swelling.  The best I can explain it, is because I'm obese, the pressure from the weight is causing pressure in my spine which is making my brain, and therefore my optical nerves, swell.  The treatment is possible medication and weight loss.  At the moment my doctor feels that the medication is not necessary because I'm managing it with my weight loss.

How much weight loss you ask?  Well, in the past 75 days, I've lost 25 lbs.  (If I wasn't pregnant I'd still have 60 lbs to go to reach my goal weight.)  The good news is that when I went for a follow up today, there were visible signs of reduced swelling.  I'd say in the past 3 weeks, I've only had one serious case of visual aura, and I was pretty dehydrated.  The nerves are not completely back to normal, but we're getting there.  The concern now is to manage and still have a healthy pregnancy.  

I've been very active before I got pregnant.  My friend (who is 20 weeks pregnant) and I attend our gym 6 days a week.  I want to continue being active throughout the pregnancy.  I'm not "dieting" (which is a word I detest anyways, but a rant for another day), but I believe that I can have a healthy pregnancy and continue losing a few pounds, at least for a while, but I definitely don't want to gain the type of weight I gained with the first two pregnancies.  I'll be working close with my OB, a nutritionist, and the eye doctor, plus I've really learned a lot about listening to what my own body is saying.  

So how am I feeling now?  Like vomit.  All day long.  It started about a week and a half ago and the nausea has gotten progressively worse.  I'm doing my best to control it, drinking water, eating protein.  It's the worst in the mornings when I first wake up and there's nothing in my stomach.  I can't sit around and feel bad for myself like I did with my first pregnancy.  I've got two busy kids and lots to do, so I manage.  

If you're wondering how it compares to my other two pregnancies: this one has the timing of Sariah's, with the aversions of Bryson's.  With Sariah I was sick from about 5.5 weeks to 13.  I lived on water, toast and McDonald's cheeseburgers (true story!)  With Bryson morning sickness waited until 10 weeks and lasted until 20, and I had a strong aversion to beef and dairy (if it comes from a cow, it's a no, no.)  This time around I'm sick starting at 5.5 weeks, we'll see how long it lasts, but I also have the cow aversions.  I'm doing my best with whole wheat, peanut butter, and chicken.  I've been trying to eat veggies and fruits, but the green stuff is a little harder, the first thing I gagged on was a big salad.  I'm just hoping this doesn't last till week 20!

If you're wondering how the kids are doing, well Sariah is taking it super well.  She's very excited for the baby, and she can't wait to help out.  We've been babysitting for a friend on and off for the past year and she's had lots of time to play with the baby.  Bryson doesn't really get what's going on yet.  He still thinks he's the baby.  We've been trying to impress to him what a big boy he is, but he's not having it.  He's also a super clingy momma's boy.  Often when I've been holding our friend's baby, he insists on climbing up in my lap, too.  I'm hoping we'll have lots of loving grandparents and daddy around for awhile to help him with the adjustment.  

I'm really excited about this pregnancy and doing my best to enjoy it since I'm 99.9% sure it'll be the last one for us.  I have that calm feeling that our family is finally about to be completed.  It should be a fun year!  If you managed to read this all without your eyes glazing over, I'm totally impressed.  If you have other questions, feel free to hit me up.  I never know what to write on here anymore and most days can't string to sentences together.  (This took me 1.5 hrs to write, and everyone else is in bed, so it's completely quiet!)

21 May 2012


P.S.  This is post 102.  My birthday is 10/2.  I just think that's cool...  Carry on...

01 May 2012

Tooth. Gone

Sunday night I cut up some apples for the kids to enjoy.   Then this happened:
 The tooth had been loose for about a week, but it didn't seem super wiggly, so I thought I had some time.  Guess I didn't.  For a moment we thought that Sariah had swallowed the tooth because she hadn't imminently noticed it was gone, but luckily for Sariah, Mommy found it on the floor.  And here it is!
 I quickly whipped up a little pillow with a tooth shaped pocked for the tooth fairy (unfortunately not pictured) and when she awoke there were two shiny quarters waiting her.  She is super excited and loves showing everyone the hole in her mouth.
I just can't believe she's old enough to be losing teeth.  They sure grow up fast.

(This is for Grandparents that didn't see it on facebook.)