Bringing in the New Year in Style

Jeremy has to work tonight, so it's me and all the girls (babies in the belly, dogs in their bed) hanging out tonight. It's seriously doubtful I will last until midnight, since I don't think that has happened since I've been pregnant. So far, however, the night looks promising.
When I got home, I took a long bubble bath using my new sleepy time bath lotion (which is amazing, by the way...it was a Christmas gift from Bath & Body Works). I even shaved my legs, which is no easy feat anymore, and getting harder all the time! : ) Now I'm sitting here in my snuggly and warm pajamas, enjoying the lights from the Christmas tree one last time, watching season 6 of Gilmore Girls. And I plan to stay here all night, and quite possibly most of the day tomorrow! This might actually be a great New Year's Eve...I'm taking full advantage of all this downtime before April gets here and my world is completely rearranged. I even took off work Friday, in order to extend the holiday spirit a little longer. Actually, I'm planning to start cleaning out the spare bedroom that will become the babies' room, but it feels so good to have a four-day, work-free stretch to do whatever I decide to do.
I don't do New Year's resolutions very well, either making them or keeping them, but I do actually have a couple in mind this year. First, I want to stop wasting so much food. Lots of things I buy when grocery shopping only gets half-eaten, then eventually thrown in the trash. So I'm making a resolve to stop buying so much stuff, and focus on the things I know we'll eat consistently. Jeremy is going to have to help me a little with this one, whether he knows it yet or not. Next, I intend to become a little better housekeeper than I am now. I won't say I will ever be very good at this homemaking stuff, and I will never have a house with everything in its place all the time...that's just not our lifestyle. But I can do better than I do now. For awhile, I've been thinking about hiring someone to come in once a month or so to clean, intending to use that Northeast check I put in so many extra hours to earn. That prospect is still definitely a good possibility once the girls are here, but at least until I go back to work after maternity leave I can make an effort to do a little better at my housekeeping.
So there it is...my plan for 2009. Nothing too major, and all quite within reach. In a year that's going to be full of wild and crazy changes anyway, maybe I can make a little progress.
Here's to a fabulous New Year!


December Whirlwind

Where has December gone?? I cannot believe Christmas has come and gone already, and by this time next week it will be 2009. Christmas was good, except that Jeremy had to work, which threw off our normal holiday schedule. We opened our gifts to each other on the 23rd, knowing it was the last chance we would have to really sit down together. Plus, Jeremy can't stand surprises, so the suspense of Christmas nearly kills him! He got me a digital video camera, which we are both very excited about learning to use. We'll have to practice on the dogs until the newest subjects arrive. I think the gifts I wrapped for our stockings may have been close to being Jeremy's favorites:
Our house is most definitely a "house divided" when it comes to football, so I guess it's lucky we'll have two kids to display our team spirit! I got each of us a pink onesie and a pacifier clip, Alabama for me, Auburn for him. I think Jeremy already has visions of at least one of his little girls in head-to-toe Auburn wear.

We had Christmas with Jeremy's family the weekend before Christmas, which was nice because everything was not so rushed on Christmas Eve and Christmas day. On Christmas Eve, Jeremy had to have his truck fixed (an electronic part we'd been waiting for came in that day), and the mechanic came to our house to fix it! How nice was that? We didn't make it to his grandparents as planned that morning, but the truck is now fixed and the horn no longer beeps every thirty seconds, so that's definitely a good thing. I headed to Scottsboro for the evening, where my sister and I had Christmas with our dad, then watched a movie at home. I came back home so I could see Jeremy for at least a little while on Christmas morning. My family does breakfast on Christmas morning, although this year we pushed it back to brunch time since I would not have to rush off to get to the celebration with Jeremy's family. Jeremy and I spent a little time together, then he headed to his grandparents' before work and I headed to Scottsboro again. While packing up the presents, I noticed I had a box to his grandfather, which I thought he'd taken. A quick phone call later, we discovered he had my mom's present instead. We quickly met halfway in between the house and his grandparents' to exchange...luckily they only live about 10 minutes away! The rest of my Christmas was spent in Scottsboro, hanging out with my family. We all stayed in our pajamas all day, but Laura did model some new clothes for me:

We tend to get a little restless by the end of the evening on holidays, since staying home so much is a rare occasion for us. We watched Casablanca, snacked, and napped most of the afternoon. Around 9:00, we ventured out to Talk of the Town, where Bruce was having a Pajama Party....we were, quite literally, in our pajamas, of course! We visited with friends and family who had gathered down there for a couple of hours, and I picked up a few things for my tree next year, at 50% off, naturally. After that, we rode through town a little while, letting Laura try out her new GPS. It finally navigated us back home, and this pregnant lady hit the bed. All in all, a great holiday.

Lately I've been telling myself that as soon as Christmas is over, I am really going to get started on baby preparations, so now the time is here! We did confirm at our last ultrasound that they are definitely little ladies. They are growing right on track, actually toward the upper part of the size range right now (yikes!). They are also staying close to the same size, with only about 2 oz. difference, which is a good sign we are hopefully avoiding the complications of TTTS. I am gaining weight a little more quickly now, and I was up ten pounds total at the last visit. All in all, I think the doctor is very pleased with how well we are all progressing, despite our potential for complications. Praise the Lord! Hopefully we can continue this way for a couple more months. I am getting bigger by the day, which is normal of course, but sometimes I wonder if my belly can grow enough to contain these girls for another three and a half months! I am feeling them move now, but still just when I am sitting or lying still. They are definitely getting stronger though, and I'm hoping their daddy can feel them soon! We had a DVD made at our last ultrasound, and it's so fun to watch those little arms and legs flailing around. Hard to believe all that is going on in my abdomen. My favorite point on the video is when she was switching from baby A to baby B...baby B's bottom is right in front of baby A's face, then B starts kicking her little legs right at A's head! It is so funny to watch...I wish I knew how to isolate it and upload it here. I can, however, introduce my girls from their latest ultrasound pictures. Here they are, in all their fuzzy, grainy, black-and-white glory:

Baby A: Mary Addison Hughes (she'll be called Addison)
I think her arm is folded across her chest.

Baby B: Mackenzie Ross Hughes

And finally, my belly at 21 weeks, alongside my new Christmas ornament:


'Tis the Season

I really cannot believe Christmas is now less than two weeks away. I have done NO shopping yet, either! Well, I did order two small things for Jeremy online, but still, there are no presents under our Christmas tree at the moment. I try not to over-commit during this time of year, so we are not nearly as busy as many people (which I am quite sure will change once we have children). However, since last Saturday I have done the following: ridden in a Christmas parade, given a final exam, graded most of the said final exam, started on Christmas cards, and attended the office Christmas party. When you're a lazy pregnant lady with a bedtime of roughly 9:00 pm, that's a lot! Today, my aunt and I are going to see The Nutcracker and have dinner at Red Lobster (her favorite, since today is my Christmas gift to her...guess I don't have to shop for that one!). I also hope to squeeze in some of that shopping after we finish, though it depends on how tired I am at that point. Tomorrow, we are having a dinner honoring our choir director, who is leaving, then the youth Christmas party tomorrow night. Busy day! Like I said, 'tis the season....

For the first time in the seven Christmases we've spent together, Jeremy has to work this year. That's just the way it falls sometimes...and better this year than next! This will introduce a little change to our normal Christmas routine (which, again, I'm sure will completely change next year). We normally go to Scottsboro for breakfast with my family, then on to Eva for Jeremy's LARGE family gathering. Christmas Eve is spent with his grandparents and my dad. This year, we are doing Christmas with his parents the weekend before, and I will spend Christmas day in Scottsboro. We have long said that when we have children, our parents can all come to our house to celebrate. Next year they will still be too young to really understand, but by the next I expect we will implement the new routine. I'm curious...how do you with children manage your Christmas traditions, while also letting your children be at home to enjoy the day?

At any rate, the season is here, whether I'm prepared or not! I sometimes have to stop and remind myself that it's not the decorations on the tree or the quality of the wrapping and bows (or lack thereof) that matters. It's family and love, and celebrating the miracle that is our Savior...that part I can do!!