Aug 31, 2009

San Diego Day Four - Sea World

We woke up feeling refreshed and upon opening our suitcases and being confronted with the smell of sewage that had somehow seeped into everything we owned during our two nights at the cabin we again were reassured that we had made the right decision to cut our losses and move to La Quinta. Also Tim hadn't felt the urge to sleep with a butcher knife tucked under the mattress like he had at the cabin, which further reassured us the choice was the right one. We dropped the dogs off at doggie daycare and headed out to Sea World.

Me and a whale... resemblance?

Tim and a whale. Less resemblance.

Dun dun... dun dun.... dun dun dun dun dun dun!!!

Shamu posing. The show was really cool, but it was even cooler after the show when we went to the Shamu viewing area and happened to arrive during a training session. We were able to watch all of the tricks from both the underwater viewing tank, and from above and close range.

The sea lion show was cute.

There was a dolphin show too.

This was when we were watching the sea lions in their habitat. There was a stand where people could buy small fish to feed the sea lions, and this guy had himself posed on a rock waiting for some fish.

At first I was impressed and thought he was pretty smart displaying himself like that. Then we heard a ruckus coming from the next habitat over, where we saw several more sea lions begging, but these were howling and screaming for food as well.

Then there was this guy, who brought begging to a whole new level. The picture gives a good view of how pathetic he was.

But the video is better:


These birds kept swooping in and grabbing the fish right out of people's hands.

Sea world was more relaxing than the zoo. The area to walk around was a lot smaller, and there weren't as many small displays of things I wasn't all that interested in seeing, like all of the birds all over the zoo.

We picked up the dogs and were able to make it to the beach before dark this time, but I'll put all of the beach pictures together in the next post.

Aug 29, 2009

San Diego Day Three – Ahhhh… La Quinta I Love You

The next day we wasted hours debating what to do. We wanted to say at La Quinta instead, but we had already paid for all 5 nights at the cabin. Finally, after much feeling guilty about wasting money, we packed up and left for La Quinta. Cutting our losses was the best decision of the trip. We made ourselves feel better by assuming that the moment we drove away was the moment the owner was running full speed towards our cabin, sharpened axe in hand. We got away just in the nick of time.

It was too late to go to Sea World that day like we had planned, but I had found a doggie daycare to take the dogs to the next day so we decided we would do Sea World then. Tim had been working with a project manager for a general contracting company in San Diego who he wanted to meet and visit with, and we headed out to do that. Meeting him went well. We had to leave the dogs out in the car, but it wasn't too hot outside and when I went to check on them the air in the car didn't feel too hot. When the end of the work day rolled around the owner of the company was pulling out of the parking lot, just after Tim and I had unloaded the dogs from the car to give them some water in the front yard of the business. The owner drove up next to us and rolled down the window to say goodbye. Just then Howard's butt started to explode. He was standing with his tail tucked between his legs, an expression of embarrassment and horror on his face as he involuntarily crouched down just a little and diarrhea began shooting out all over his tail, and exploded all over the zeroscaped front yard. The owner had started to drive off as Tim waved goodbye and smiled and Tim looked down at Howard just as he was starting to explode. Tim felt pretty embarrassed about the whole thing, and we aren't sure if the owner saw or not, but there is a good chance she did. The guy Tim had come to meet with was still inside, and so we had a few minutes to clean up the mess as best we could. He came out right when Tim was hosing down Howard's butt though, and asked why we were giving our dog an enema. Ahhhh. What is it they say about first impressions? Things went well after that though. He asked if we wanted to drive around a bit and see some affordable neighborhoods. Tim had mentioned to him that we might be interested in moving out to San Diego and it turned out his wife is in real estate and he knew off the top of his head the prices right around that neighborhood. It was cool to see what we could get, and Tim got a chance to talk to him longer which was nice because they got along so well.

We drove out to a dog beach after that and didn't quite make it before dark. The dogs still got to run though and the beach was beautiful at night and felt all romantic-like.

Arriving back to an air conditioned hotel room with a shower that did more than dribble a tiny trickle of water and no sewage smell was like a dream. I was lulled to sleep on the soft bed to the gentle sound of an air conditioner. Zzzzzzz.....

Aug 27, 2009

San Diego Day Two – The Zoo is Cool, But Seriously, This Cabin Sucks

Howard looking better and the cabin being cooler first thing in the morning made us feel more optimistic about the place. Yes, it was a little hot at night, but perhaps yesterday was just a hot day, or maybe the owner had just opened the windows right before we arrived. With the fan blowing and the windows open we left the dogs outside in the nice fenced backyard and ventured off to the San Diego Zoo.

This wolf was really pretty, and she had a little friend, a golden retriever who she was raised with since she was a puppy. They said being raised with a dog helped influence the wolf to be more domestic.

Here is Tim posing for his pregnancy week 25 belly shot. Pretty impressive bump, right?

And me, feeling a little outdone by Tim, but liking the hedge elephant behind me.

The polar bear was sleepy. Right before this he walked around in a circle like a dog before settling himself down for a nap.

We were able to see the panther pacing back and forth just a few feet in front of us. He is so sleek and beautiful.

He is a little hard to see, but one ape was really posing for the crowd up on his rock.

This guy looked like Jabba The Hut to me.

The hippo was surprisingly graceful prancing through the water.

This monkey and his buddy were really busy sifting through their own poop. They were going through it very meticulously, not wanting to risk missing finding any… uhhh… we don’t know. But it was important.

Even the Flamingos were fun to watch. We were laughing about how a lot of them slept with one leg dangling behind them, it was goofy looking. Then there were a couple of flamingos in the water who were moving their knees back and forth in time with the music playing at the zoo while their heads were under the water.

I had a lot of fun at the zoo, but I did feel like the layout could use some improvement. Everything was so scattered around that it was a huge hike to see it all and by the end I was totally exhausted.

When we arrived back at the cabin, the host came over right away to tell us that Sadie barked the entire day. Without stopping. Great. Not that we could blame her, the next day we noticed a racket that sounded like a lamb being slaughtered coming from somewhere nearby, so it's no wonder she barked all day. But, the reason we chose the cabin was because it had a backyard where we could leave the dogs during the day, without that option we may as well be staying somewhere with AC closer to downtown San Diego. We decided to figure out how we were going to solve that problem in the morning, and put some steak on the grill. After leaving the cooked steak unattended for just a minute, we came out to find Howard scarfing it down. Well, at least he had his appetite back, we thought, although ultimately the steak would disagree with him and this would cause quite a scene the following day. A faint sewage smell that I had noticed a little when running the water in the bathroom started to get stronger. We started noticing it all over the cabin. That night the cabin was even hotter. Finally I got up and soaked my feet in ice water in the dogs' water bowl. It is the only way I was able to cool down enough to get to sleep.

Aug 25, 2009

San Diego Day One – Arrival at the Cabin

I reserved us a cabin in Descanso, which is about 40 minutes away from downtown San Diego. On our way to the cabin on the first night we got delayed an hour because of some wrong turns and didn’t get close until after dark. As we drove along the remote highway leading to the Descanso exit Tim casually mentioned something along the lines of how he wasn’t sure how safe this area would be. Here I was thinking how quaint the cabin would be and now all of a sudden the line “you got a perty mouth… now squeal like a pig!” started cycling through my mind. Now, I haven’t seen the movie Deliverance that the line is from, but for some reason I know the line. I think Kristina is to blame for that. But what I do know is the movie is about some city folk who are visiting a remote area full of inbred hillbillies and at one point one hillbilly says the line to one of the city boys and proceeds to rape him and then possibly kill him. That’s about all I know about the movie. The point is, we drove to the cabin feeling a little spooked about how remote it was.

Upon arrival we were given a quick tour of the cabin by our host, who informed us that we shouldn’t leave our dogs outside unattended for more than a couple of minutes after dark as there were enormous raccoons, rattle snakes, and other various deadly creatures frequently about. The guy didn't say anything wrong, but we were both feeling kind of spooked like we might be axe murdered. We're still not sure if it was the guy who made us feel that way, or the remote location of the cabin.

It was late and all the windows were open, but there was no AC and the cabin must have been at least 85 degrees inside, and I feel that is a conservative estimate. Wearing hardly any clothes, laying spread eagled on the bed with the industrial sized fan found in the closet blasting on us I was still hot. Maybe if we could have left the windows open all night it would have been better, but alas, there was some kind of shrieking insect who had stationed himself directly outside the bedroom window so closing it was the lesser of the two evils. Finally, after imagining that I was on a houseboat at Lake Powell listening to the motor roaring unevenly (this is what the fan sounded like to me), I was able to fall asleep. But not for long. Howard started pacing around and when I touched his face I noticed he seemed rather slobbery. I turned on a light, and saw that he had been stung by something because his nose was all swollen up. The rest of the night I got up a lot to check on him and plus the industrial fan roaring and the heat weren’t helping me out a whole lot. Finally it was morning and though Howard had puked two huge piles of vomit all over the carpet in the cabin, his swelling seemed to be going down. Things were looking up.

Aug 24, 2009

25 Weeks

Tim and I were in San Diego for the past week so that's where we took my week 25 picture. Not too much has changed since 23 weeks. I did finally figure out how to avoid my legs itching so much, and what simple solution, don't shave them! Oh boy, it is fantastic and very sexy. Although I risked it for the San Diego trip and they didn't itch so I'm hoping the itching for a few weeks there was just a phase that is over.

According to the internet the baby weighs about 1.5 pounds now, and I am starting to feel her moving a little stronger and more often. The past couple of weeks on occasion she must wedge herself up against my bladder or kick it or something because out of the blue I will all of a sudden feel like I'm about to explode. Then a minute later the feeling will go away and I won't have to pee at all. It is a strange feeling. Makes for an exciting 12 hour road trip, never knowing if I really have to pee or if it is a false alarm.

Really there isn't very much new that I've noticed pregnancy wise. Only a couple more weeks and I will be starting the third trimester and be a week into my 7th month. It's hard to believe that my due date is just a little over 3 months away, this summer has really flown by.

Aug 20, 2009

The ceremony details

My dad and Tim’s dad conducted the ceremony, custom designed by Tim and I. I fell in love with this piece of romantic mythology to include: “According to Greek mythology, our original human nature was not like it is now. Then, human beings each had two sets of arms, two sets of legs, and two faces looking in opposite directions. As time went on, the gods began to fear that their reign might be threatened by these humans, who had turned out to be quite powerful. Therefore, Zeus divided the humans in half, intending to thus leave them weak and vulnerable. After the division, each divided human sought to find his or her other half and reunite. When they did find each other, they came together, threw their arms about one another, and entwined in mutual embrace, longing to grow back into the single being they had been. Their desire for one another restored mankind’s original bond, making lonely halves one again and healing the state of humanity. Even today, as man or woman, we begin our journey alone and must seek our lost half. When we meet that missing part of ourselves, our mate, we are lost in the amazement of love, friendship and intimacy. The desire and pursuit of the whole is called Love.”

And I also wanted to include this native American wedding poem:
“Now you will feel no rain, for each will be a shelter to the other.
Now you will feel no cold, for each will be warmth to the other.
Now there is no loneliness, for each will be a companion to the other.
Now you are two persons, but there are three lives before you, his live, her life, and your life together.
When evening falls, you will look up and there each will be to take the other’s hand. You’ll turn together to look at the road you’ve traveled to reach this moment. It stretches far behind you and your future lies ahead. – a long and winding road, whose every turning means discovery. Old hopes, new laughter, shared fears. Your adventure has just begun.”

The rest of the ceremony was short, and more traditional. Mostly family and close friends attended the wedding. More friends came to the reception. Overall, it was a fairly small event. Tim and I chose reception music featuring Louis Armstrong, Frank Sinatra, Ray Charles, and B.B. King. My dad wrote us a poem that he read at the reception, it was very sweet. We planned to dance to Louie Armstrong’s A Kiss to Build a Dream On. But by the time photos were taken, bouquet and garter thrown, refreshments eaten, cake cut and distributed, dusk was already descending, and to be honest, we had totally forgotten. The whole event was a success, laid back and outdoorsy, exactly what we wanted.

Aug 19, 2009

The Wedding SLC Style

For the family and friends ceremony I reserved a couple of group campsites at the Jordan Pines campground up Big Cottonwood Canyon. Other than having the dress, reserving a place for the wedding, and having my invitations made, I didn’t see the point in doing a whole lot more planning. Tim’s mom and sisters kept threatening me, telling me if I didn’t do the planning they’d come over and make me. Which they did a few weeks before the wedding. They took charge of the food, and Tim’s sister Missy even made the wedding cake. My family came into town a week before the wedding and seemed to think I ought to do even MORE planning. I had to agree a couple of tents in case it rained, chairs, speakers, and an arbor were nice touches.

I got into my dress in a tent at the campground. The bridesmaids and my mom were there to help. The music began and the flower girls, Ashlee and Stella, began to walk down the aisle throwing their petals to the acoustical version of the Princess Bride theme song. Next came the bridesmaids accompanied by the groomsmen, my brothers Eric and Seth and Tim’s brother Mike, all in tuxes with daisy boutonnieres. April told me later that when it was her turn to walk down the aisle with Seth she was getting ready to take his arm when instead he took charge and grasped her arm firmly. She said she felt like she was being escorted by the CIA. Looking at this picture cracks me up because he really does look like some kind of bodyguard or something with his dark sunglasses and his firm grasp on her arm.

The weather was perfect. Warm but not hot, sunny, but with good shade under the numerous trees at the campground.

Tim’s dad and Tim were waiting in front of the arbor talking and didn’t even know the wedding was starting until the wedding party started walking down the aisle. Tim still tells me how when he saw me come out of the tent he was blown away by how gorgeous I looked and by how perfect the dress was. My dad and I walked down the aisle to “You belong to me”. I fell in love with the Bob Dylan version and it was Tim and I’s song because it goes, “just remember till you’re home again, you belong to me”. Tim traveled a lot, so it fit, and “you belong to me” is now inscribed in our rings. Tim insisted my love for the Bob Dylan version was an acquired taste, and that no one would be able to take the wedding seriously with Bob Dylan’s nasal voice guiding me down the aisle. I had to admit he had a point, so I chose the version by Jason Wade instead. I forgot to let my dad bid me farewell, oops, lack of planning and rehearsal… but he remembered and gave me two big hugs and a kiss, a moment that was really touching and I think I will always remember clearly.

Instead of hiring a photographer, we had family and friends snap pictures and gathered them together later. I was very happy with the photos everyone took. I like how excited Tim is about the cake in this picture:

My brother Eric has a gift for photography, and I put him in charge. He even gave us a photo album full of his favorite pictures, which I love and proudly display in my living room now.

We were both so relieved that it was over and it went smoothly that we kind of forgot ourselves when the whole you may kiss the bride part came. Tim might have gone a little overboard, but it made for a memorable kiss.

Here we are walking off after the ceremony. Only to turn around again when we realized we hadn't had any wedding pictures taken yet. Ahhh, lack of planning strikes again.

I like this one.

Aug 18, 2009

Vegas Wedding

We were planning to get married in August. I decided that I wanted our dads to perform the ceremony, and so we were going to get married at the courthouse right before the wedding. But, Tim had to travel to St. George at the end of April and we decided I should come with him and we would head to Vegas and get married there. Tim was driving his huge work truck, and we decided to go through the drive through to get married. But first, I had to have the birthplace of my mother, and I wasn’t positive of that. The large woman at the front desk had quite an attitude about it. She swayed her head from side to side as she said, “You don’ know where yo motha was bowne?!” I desperately tried to explain that my mom was an army brat, how could I know? Sadly, I was unable to convince her of my worth after that. I called my brothers, who each named different places, different states in fact. I felt a little better about not knowing myself. It was around 9 PM on April 30 when I tried calling my parents’ cell phone. I didn’t get an answer so I left a message. We didn’t have much hope that they’d call back, since they were on a camping trip where they were likely out of cell phone reach. However, that night they were camping next to the car, where the phone was, and my dad happened to open the truck door to look for something. He called back, telling me how he had heard a “strange beeping noise” which after some investigation, turned out to be the phone’s voicemail notification. Turned out he knew where his wife was born, so we checked that obstacle off the list. I didn’t bring my dress, because I wanted to save that for the family ceremony. But, I did proudly wear my veil along with my tank top, jeans and flip flops. The photographer had just had a brawl with the Elvis-impersonator, an ordained minister who performed some of the ceremonies, but not ours, which I’m almost a little sad about in retrospect. When we walked up to get our pictures taken he was slouched on a bench pressing a cloth to the side of his head. His mood was as you would expect. That was a little interesting, but we managed to get some cute pictures anyway... which I haven't put on the computer yet. You'd think I'd have done that after 3 years, wouldn't you? Hmm. Maybe next year.

Aug 17, 2009

The Engagement

After dating for a year Tim and I decided to move in together. We started looking for a rental that allowed dogs because I knew I wanted one, especially because he was still traveling a lot at that time. We moved into the top level of a little house in sugarhouse and adopted Sadie. Tim had only had much experience with little dogs, so he was ambivalent about adopting a dog at first. But, within days Sadie had him wrapped around her little toe.

A year or so after moving in together we started thinking about marriage. Tim was in the process of picking out a ring with me, something that took awhile. Tim was actually more picky than I was about it, and wanted me to have something quality that we would love forever. Tim hadn’t planned to ask until he got the engagement ring, but a job came up and he knew he was going to be out of town for a month or so. He wanted to surprise me before he left. We went hiking before he had to leave, and he said he wanted to look at a ring he’d already given me, which I was wearing. I took it off and gave it to him, but became suspicious when he casually didn’t give it back. We hiked up to a city overlook with some cool stone rooms and walls. He asked me to marry him there. We knew we’d be dynamite together, because our initials were T n’ T, or TNT. Haha. That is how we labeled our food when we shopped together and I shared an apartment with April and Kristina, and we still like to refer to ourselves that way.

Aug 16, 2009

How Tim and I met

In honor of our 3rd wedding anniversary on the 19th, I thought I would post the story of how I met Tim and got engaged and married to him. It turned out pretty long, so there will be a few installments.

I met Tim in the fall of 2000, when I was 18 years old. I met him and a few of his friends at a party, but I talked to so many people that night that I didn’t get to know him too well. A few weeks after that, he saw one of my friends at another party and gave her a rock and a note to give to me. The note explained that this was a love rock, and that no one who had it could resist falling in love with him. I thought that was pretty cute and ended up calling him. It didn't work quite as he planned, since instead of dating him I proposed a friendship. But though the love rock’s magic was dormant for about 2 ½ years, we all know it did work eventually.

Periodically over the years Tim would remind me that he did in fact like me, and test out the waters to see if I’d changed my mind yet. Once we did date briefly, but I broke it off, panicking because he seemed really nice and serious about me. I didn’t feel ready for anything serious, and didn’t want to play around with someone who was. He was very cool about it when I said I wanted to just be friends again. He didn’t get hurt or offended, and just said ok, fine with him. When I was 21, we started to date seriously. At that point, Tim says he got frustrated with me and gave up trying to impress me, which I was instantly impressed by. I had quite an aversion to relationships back then, and I think that the fact that Tim was traveling 3 weeks out of the month when we started to get serious really helped to take the pressure off of me. It also forced us to talk on the phone a lot, and I think we really got to know each other well that way. He quickly became someone who I could confide in and relate to on a level that was totally different from any I'd experienced with other guys.

Aug 6, 2009

6 Months (23 Weeks)

I'm starting the sixth month and beginning to look obviously pregnant. I had my first person ask me how far along I was last week, with confidence, as if there could be no doubt. A few people speculated before, but I wasn't to the point yet where they felt sure they wouldn't end up embarrassing us both by finding out that I was just putting on weight so they never asked directly. I felt kind of excited to have passed that point. I'm sure in a couple more months I'll start feeling uncomfortable, but for now it is kind of fun and novel to be getting such a big belly.

I got a huge assortment of maternity clothes from Tim's sisters, who pass them all around to whoever is pregnant at the time, isn't that the coolest? Many of them fit, or will fit soon enough, so I really shouldn't have to buy many of my own, although I did buy a couple of things from Old Navy because they have some cute cheap maternity clothes, if you're looking you should check their stuff out.

I've started feeling itchy especially on my stomach, from all of the stretching going on there I assume. My calves are itchy too, randomly enough. I'm not sure what the reason is there, as I am fairly confident my calves have not doubled in size recently, but I'm sure it has to do with some weird hormone. I'm slathering lotion on everywhere, but it doesn't seem to do a lot for the itchiness. The good news is I don't see any stretch marks yet (oh please, please, stay that way faithful unstrechmarked tummy). My side pain seems to be getting a little worse, these days I notice it after walking only a mile. Laura keeps telling me I need to get a maternity belt or girdle, and I think this weekend I'm going to get serious about that and try to find one that might work. It would just be the coolest if it actually helped the side pain enough to hike up to dog lake again, the elliptical just isn't quite as exciting. I'm waking up a bit more at night, mostly to pee but also because laying in one position gets more uncomfortable than I'm used to. As far as symptoms go I think that's about all so far.

Tim took this 22 week picture before I was ready, and I thought I would post it instead of the pictures I was actually posing for since it's probably a more accurate representation of what I'm normally looking like.

Tim has been working on the nursery. I need to take some progress pictures. He did a neat wainscoting design and then decided to do crown molding and some picture frame looking things in the upper part of the walls. He loves a chance to use those woodworking skills! It's looking really pretty so far and I'm excited to see it all painted.
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