What I Love Wednesday….

Hi All :). Once again we are back linking up with This Kind of Love for What I Love Wednesday.  There are so many things we all are loving right now…wonderful friendships, perfect days, a new bundle of joy and perfect moments before another bundle of joy arrives. Once you get done reading, we would love to know what you love today.

Andrea:

* Two-hour long conversations with my mother-in-law. Yes. You did read that correctly. I am so lucky to have a mother-in-law who I can laugh with, cry with (although, fortunately that doesn’t happen much), and just ramble about everything with. She loves me, my hubby, and our kids so much… and I could NOT have found another mother-in-law in the world as awesome as her.:)

* Impromptu time with friends… a spinning class at the Y, followed by grilled hot dogs, Miller Lite, and an action movie with Rebecca and Paul. A pizza and cinnastix (thanks, Dawn) while processing photography orders with my bestie, Cilla, and her hubby, as we impatiently await baby Steffen’s arrival. A few minutes laughing with Dawn and Brandon after we moved out the last of her things as she makes a move to Ohio. A few quick moments in time… all so important in making my life so full.

* Lexington’s Farmer’s Market. Fresh green beans. Corn on the cob. Wandering around the market with my mom, Bailey, and Emily… all a perfect Saturday morning.

* Riding a bike… a real bike… on a road, not in a class, for the first time in nearly 20 years. The wind in my hair… the pain in my butt… the sweat pouring down. And, seriously, I only rode one block, people. LOL.

* My husband. We have our moments. We are a real married couple. We fight. We want to kill each other some days. Yet, on the good days, things are great. And, those days are the ones I love. Waking up together and not being in a rush to get out of bed… to get to cuddle up and talk about everything under the sun (especially how bad the other one’s breath is – whew!). Mornings like that at our house are few and far between, but on Sunday, we had that. And, within 10 minutes, both of our munchkins were in the middle of the bed, cuddling with us. Some days just start out perfectly.:)I want to hold onto those little moments more than anything else in the world.

* Summer days at the pool… we have spent some quality time at the pool over the last very hot week. The water has been perfect. The kids are all over the pool. Jake is even becoming braver and putting his face in the water. With goggles on. Once each time we go to the pool. But no more than once. Baby steps, mom.:)Bailey, on the other hand, is hard to keep up with because she spends more time underwater than above. All very good, very happy things.:)

Becca:

* Not being at work, and doing whatever else I want to do at that particular moment that includes not being at work.  Maternity leave has been fun.  I’ve pretty much done exactly what I want, spent enough time in my pyjamas each day and enjoyed every single moment (aside from a few catastrophic showers here and there) being NOT at work and home with my newborn and my 4 year old, doing whatever the 3 of us want to do in the Summer.

* Sam sleeping and smiling.  Since Sam is too young to smile for a good reason, or smile in response to something, every time I’ve watched him sleeping, at some point, he drifts off into sleep and as I can only imagine, is dreaming of something so wonderful to a newborn that it makes him smile, with his eyes closed, fast asleep, smiling in the most quirkiest and most adorable of ways.

* Netflix and Redbox.  Two of the most ingenious and practical inventions to come out of pure laziness in the last decade.  I hated blockbuster and their price raping, so when Netflix came out, I was all too ready to pay $12.95 a month for a DVD to get delivered to my mailbox, to forget about that DVD and never pay a late fee.  When they added streaming, I can now watch favorite movies like Birdcage on my Wii in my bedroom, or on our Xbox 360 in the living room.  Genius.  And Redbox.  With a million locations now, $1 for a rental, peruse the available inventory online before you head out, it’s just brilliant.

* School supplies.  I could shop for school supplies endlessly.  I love getting a bargain on a 24 pack of crayola crayons and the mountains of bound notepads.  I love all the cool looking binders, fancy types of writing instruments, cool back packs and awesome lunch boxes.  I could spend an hour or two trying to decide which yearly planner to purchase to replace the one I bought only a month ago, and walk out the store having purchased two planners, thinking foolishly that I would keep up with both, only not to do that but never regret my double purchase.

* Sweating.  I had forgotten how good it felt, to return home from a good run/exercise jaunt and wipe down sweat from my chest and pant like a dog in exhaustion.  I don’t enjoy picking off the millions of sweat stuck bugs across my arms or chest (or face), but to sweat, to feel like I’ve accomplished something in my never ending fight against the fat, even if it was just a measly 340 calories, the sweat made it all worthwhile.

Cilla:

* My yoga ball…Random? Well, as I sit here on my yoga ball, having mild contractions, with the TV and laptop in front of me, I think about how wonderful this thing is. I’m sure I look ridiculous bouncing up and down as I type or even more so when I roll my pelvis around like Elvis (minus the young Elvis sex appeal). Why use a yoga ball (or birth ball)? It helps relieve pelvic pressure, lower back pain, it keeps you active while sitting in front of the computer (also helping with swelling), it can help baby get in just the right position, and, for me, help things progress a little more than if I were just lounging on the couch. These days are filled with focus on getting a happy, healthy, baby out!

* Fresh corn from the garden. One of my favorite things about summer is fresh produce. Even more so when it’s corn from my father-in-laws garden. I don’t know how he does it, but it’s seriously the best corn I’ve had in my entire life. You don’t know how many recent lunches have been filled with fresh corn (cooked just right…a little crispy, but not too crispy), cucumbers, and tomatoes. Oh, yum!

* Checking things off my list. We all know from THIS previous post, I love getting organized and making lists. In an attempt to get ready for our little man, we have been marking things off the list like crazy. Now I’m to the point that I’m not too worried about the lists. I don’t know that it’s because we’ve gotten so much checked off of it or that I’m just ready for him to be here. There’s always work to be done and that won’t end, but at least I feel like we’ve made so much progress and we are really really ready! Well, as ready as one could possibly be for this event that I hear will change our lives:)Lists completed or not, I can’t wait to see what the next couple weeks have in store for us. At least the lists make us look like we’re prepared. Right?

* Enjoying my life with my husband before it becomes my life with my husband and my son. As we get down to “any day now”, the little things I enjoy about our life together are becoming even more important. We had one of our “day dates” that we love so much. Spending the day with a late breakfast at Ramsey’s in Lexington (best pancakes I’ve ever had), a movie (the newest Harry Potter for this trip), and dinner at Mellow Mushroom in Lexington. The only thing missing was a couple hours at Joseph Beth Book Store. We’ve been trying to go to our favorite restaurants (a special date with one of our best friends at BW3’s…a double date with Andrea and Brad at Asuka…lunch at the Bluegrass Pizza Pub…now if I could just get some fried pickles from the Pub I would be the happiest girl ever). We enjoyed a trip to Farmer’s Market in Lexington, but missed the good stuff because we were late…boo. I even fixed us breakfast this Sunday…which was a task because I am in no mood to cook these days…okay…who am I kidding….ever. Since Bret is a teacher and I work from home most days (and I’m technically on maternity leave), we have had the luxury of sleeping in a few days here and there. One I’m sure we won’t have once little man is here with us. We’ve been staying up late and watching Criminal Minds (I know…we’re party animals). I’m sure to most, this would seem like the lamest list of things to do before having a baby, but to me, it’s perfect. I truly love our life together and can’t wait to share it with someone else. I know it will change so much, but I pray that we can keep some of these things and just share them with someone else.

* Waking up to my favorite view. Okay…prepare yourselves, this is going to be extremely cheesy and over the top. Consider yourselves warned. I love waking up and seeing Bret there. Half of his face buried into the pillow. The other half showing off his long eye lashes. He looks so peaceful and sweet. I always want to take a picture, but I know he would kill me (mostly because it would be showing off his lovely breathe right strip that he can’t sleep without…he may kill me just for that). I always take a minute to just soak it in and enjoy it before I start bugging him to wake up because, well, I just can’t stand to be the only one awake. I’m always sure not to “soak it in” longer than that because that’s just creepy. Who wants to wake up to someone staring at them? I mean…I love it, but I’m not THAT girl!

** A side note, we have three very special people who have all made separate predictions that Steffen will make his appearance in the world on the 27th (which is today…well, not today as the day I’m writing this, but today as in the day you’re reading this). Could it be a sign?

Dawn:

I warn you this one will be sappy…I have all kinds of thankfulness and love these days with our move and leaving friends and all that :). Anyways, you’ve been warned!

*Ridiculously selfless people.  Like my brother, Ryan…who offered (yes, offered…bet he won’t do that again :)) to drive from Chicago to Frankfort to Mansfield and then back to Chicago to help us move. All in 3 days. Oh, and throw in there several hours of heavy lifting in literally record breaking heat…all while never complaining.  Like Andrea…who cleaned our dirty house from top to bottom once it was empty. It was no easy feat but it saved me hours (that I didn’t have).  And she didn’t stop there…she sensed my panic (maybe it was those panicked texts she kept getting :)) at getting the remaining items out of our house after our return from Ohio so she once again jumped in the action…taking time out of her day to take all (and there were lots) of our Goodwill items to Goodwill and then storing a few things at her house as well. Like my mom and dad…who have had our boys for a week and a half (yes, I miss them tremendously, but I’m going to home today to see them…yippee :)) while we move and I close out my cases here. Not only are they watching the boys, but they have dealt with all the issues of finding a rental for us and then assuring it was move in ready. Without any of these people (and so many others) this past month would not have been a success.

*Wonderful friendships in Kentucky.  I have reflected a lot on friendship over the past month or so, as I get ready to leave wonderful friends here (including my 3 OCRO girls).  It has meant so much that so many people have made it a point to get together with me “one last time.” From lunch and dinner dates, drinks at night, get togethers at friend’s houses and some of the most thoughtful gifts imaginable. I never realized how much I loved this place until it was time to leave…we have been fortunate to make wonderful (and hopefully lasting) friendships here. And I am going to miss all these friends tremendously…I cannot even put fully into words how much.

*Wonderful friendships in Ohio. On the flip side, I am also excited to be going home. To be going into practice with my dad. To be seeing childhood friends more often.  It has meant so much that so many friends have reached out to me about our return and getting together and all that great stuff. I am really looking forward to all of that.

*Prayers. They work. And we have several people praying for us currently. That blows me away and humbles me.  Thank you to those who are doing so. We are currently 3-0 in good news…we are hoping the trend continues through September and beyond.

*My husband, Brandon.  I have told Cilla on a couple of occasions that she and Bret have such a wonderful love story.  A couple of weeks ago when I was relaying to her how we were coping with unexpected issues and how I had helped Brandon cope with it and then the next day he turned around and did the same to me when I was feeling helpless…she pointed out what a wonderful love story we had as well. And she is right. We aren’t perfect. But he is my calm voice of reason when unexpected (because I don’t like unexpected) issues come up.  And I am his glass half full when he tends to lean to the pessimistic side of life. Simply, we work.  And no matter what, he always rises to the occasion to do whatever necessary to help me when he senses I need it.

Now, we would love to hear…what are YOU thankful for today?

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