February 10th

That?s the potential birthdate for Dominic. It?s close. As in TWO WEEKS close. Talk about panic mode!

It?s not confirmed yet that we will be doing a C-section, because there is still a little bit of time for my obviously stubborn 3rd son to turn his butt around and get his head down, but it isn?t looking good. Not only that, but I?ve been put on bedrest for the rest of the pregnancy to make sure a certain little someone doesn?t end up with a prolapsed cord or a foot showing up first. Sigh. So the bathroom painting? Yeah, so not going to happen. The good news is that I?ll have time after the baby and before my sister comes to clean the house. Because I?m sure I?ll be super energetic with a newborn.

IF Dominic does turn around, the doctor doesn?t think he?ll be in there much past mid-February . . . he?s a big kid already, estimated at 7 lbs 6 oz. His head measures 38 weeks, even though we?re only in the 36th week. So who knows exactly how big he is, but it?s sure looking like he?s going to be a February baby!

So, if I only have two weeks left before my munchkin shows up, we had better get a crib. I?d better sew SOMETHING before he gets here, since I wanted to make him a cute little hat to wear home from the hospital. I?d better cook some freezer meals, too. And, and, and . . . well, one weekend left to figure it all out!

Learning Spanish Online

Every year, thousands of people flood to Antigua to study Spanish for a week or two. Some stay longer, but for the most part, they are here for a short time and then off to travel. It?s a good place to study, BUT from personal experience, I know it takes more than a week of instruction to really get the hang of a language. Learning back home isn?t the same either since you are often learning more from a book or tapes than from an actual person who speaks Spanish as their mother language.

A friend of mine here is married to a Guatemalan who is a Spanish teacher. He?s one of the nicest guys you?ll meet around here and is also a great, experienced teacher. And . . . they recently began to offer online Spanish classes!

Custom Spanish is a website that provides you with personalized online Spanish classes. You not only get to learn at the level you?re at, you get one on one teaching, which is really the best way to learn another language.  I love the idea of online learning because not only does it give you access to a native speaker, it?s also super flexible and you can?t beat the one on one classes.

If you?re interested in learning Spanish but can?t make it down here or want more than just a few days of lessons, check out Custom Spanish and find out how they can help you learn.

Before the Baby To Do List

I?m going to post this here so I have quick and easy access to it. This is my list of things I need and want to get done before Dominic makes his appearance in approximately 5 weeks!

Must Do

  • Buy a crib.
  • Get more batteries for the camera (plan to take LOTS of pics!)
  • Wash baby clothes/blankets, etc.
  • Make/buy crib sheets.
  • Pack hospital bag.
  • Discuss birth plan with doctor (I?ve never done this before, so I have plenty of questions for him!)
  • Cook freezer meals.
  • Stock pantry with foods kids and my sis will/can eat.
  • Stock up on tea, I know I?ll want plenty after the munchkin arrives!
  • Sort wheat ahead of time for easy grinding for bread after the baby.
  • Plan school for the entire month of March so I won?t be scrambling with a newborn to come up with lesson plans.
  • Figure out sleeping arrangements for my sister.
  • Figure out maternity leave, how, if, when . . .

Should Do

  • Finish sewing baby clothes (started!)
  • Make a quilt (maybe?)
  • Wash windows
  • Get rid of any and everything unnecessary to make room for another kid
  • Organize school stuff for easy access
  • Clean and disinfect the cupboards and get more mouse-proof containers for food
  • Paint bathroom (on my wishlist, but probably won?t happen)
  • Make a water holder for Loopy Peace (he keeps dumping his water out and if we aren?t home I need to be sure he has plenty to drink)
  • Dust entire house
  • Replace shower curtain
  • Go on a spider/centipede killing spree
  • Clean stove/oven
  • Make curtains for the bedroom windows at least (so the baby and I can sleep during the day!)

As you can see, there?s a lot of cleaning that needs to be done. Essentially, the entire house needs to be deep cleaned. Irving is good about doing regular sweeping and mopping and washing up, but we definitely need to do a better cleaning job before my sister gets here!

Kids Say the Darndest Things: Episode 34

Overheard while the boys were watching Wimpy Kid: Roderick Rules.

Girl in movie: ?Kiss, kiss.?

Dante: ?EW! Kiss, kiss! That?s disgusting!?

Dorian: ?Maybe not.?

Dante: ?Would you kiss that girl??

Dorian: ?Yeah.?

Dante: ?You are so DISGUSTING!?


Dante: ?Mama, can you do me a favorite and help me tie my Batman cape??


Dante: ?Hey, look! I?m turning brown like Papa!?

Me: ?Hon, that?s dirt. You need a bath.?

Dante: ?No, it?s the same color as Papa. I?m gonna be the same as him.?


Dorian: ?Wait a minute! I thought we were going to YOUR doctor to check the baby!?

Me: ?No, you?re the one who?s sick, we?re taking you to your doctor.?

Dorian: ?That?s not fair, you didn?t tell me that, I thought this was for the baby. I don?t want to see my doctor!?


Dorian and I were having a discussion about how I can?t always play with him because I have to work.

Me: ?Welcome to Mama?s world.?

Dorian: ?Welcome to real life.?


I forgot how exhausting it is to be at the end of a pregnancy. I?m 35 weeks today and I feel like I could really sleep for the remaining 5 weeks. But that?s not in the books at the moment!

My sister, Sarah, is coming down for the first two weeks of March, to help out with the boys and stuff, so we need to figure out where to put her. This little house is getting awfully crowded! It was tight for 4 of us, but soon there will be 5 and then 6 for a couple of weeks. I really want to clean the place up a bit before she gets here, but I?m not sure there?s enough energy left in the reserve tank for that!

Another to do on my list is freezer meals. A bunch of women in my due date club are making freezer meals to ensure they don?t have to cook after the baby comes, which is an awesome idea. I?ve done this before, but some of the recipes I used originally didn?t work so well. So if you have a winning freezer meal recipe, please feel free to share in the comments! I know that I rarely cook after a baby arrives and to tell the truth, I don?t want to rely on Irving?s mayonnaise marinated beef for a few weeks, so . . . freezing it is! If my sister wants to cook while she?s here, I?m not opposed to that either, since she makes a mean bacon weave and potato wedges that the boys gobble down like nobody?s business.

And on that note, off to work for the day.

Artists in the House

Dante draws most of the day and when he?s not drawing, he?s jumping off furniture in his Batman cape or building Lego inventions.  Here?s one of his recent drawings of an alien:

Yesterday, for school, Dorian narrated a story to me to write down and then he illustrated it. It was about dinosaurs, so here we have two dino houses. Inside the big house, there?s a duck hatching out of an egg. My favorite part is the unique spelling of ?quack? at the top there . . . this is the first time he?s ever tried to write a word that he doesn?t know already by simply sounding it out, so it was kind of a big deal around here!

The First Day of School

I?m a terrible blogger these days. I?ve taken so few photos and they are ALL still on my camera. And I didn?t take any photos today, which was the first day of school for the boys. Dorian has been sick, so we are a week behind.

We made the day special by getting out some dinosaur pencils and erasers that I got in Canada, but the boys were most excited about Papa helping with the teaching! He?s doing math and music, but he helped with the other subjects, too. In fact, he showed us how to do a traditional project from the schools here, where you roll bits of tissue paper into tiny balls with your forefinger and thumb and then glue them to lines. We did the boys? names because they are still not proficient in writing their own names. Dorian, interestingly enough, could roll with both hands, no problem, whereas even I have issues doing that! I think he might ambidextrous like his aunt and grandmother.

Dante had trouble sitting still for that long, so he was up and down, which is fine, because he concentrates better that way. He spent a large chunk of his time drawing pictures of what we were doing, instead of actually doing the projects. Dorian, on the other hand, was super focused and very meticulous about doing his work well. He takes being in Grade 1 very seriously.

I headed to work at 8:45 and Irving began to work on math with the kids. He finished his planned lesson, but they were all having so much fun, they kept going for another 45 minutes! Guess we?ll be a mathematical household!

Overall, the first day of school was a success and will hopefully continue like this!

The Magic of Mom

One of the things I seriously love about being a mom is that my kids know I?m going to be there for them, no matter what. If they fall down and get hurt, they know I will hug them, kiss their owie and put a bandaid on it. They know that Mama will stay up all night if they?re sick and puking, to sit with them.

When I was little and got sick, my mom was awesome. She would hold my hair back while I puked (poor Mom!), bring me water to rinse out my mouth and when I was just plain miserable, I remember her sitting beside my bed, reading to me until I fell asleep. She would make up a bed on the couch if I was really sick and if I called out for her in the night, she would come running to be with me and make me feel better. Even when I was really sick, her presence made me feel safe and I knew I was going to be ok.

Dorian has been sick over the past week. It started out with giardia, but we caught it fairly quickly and he was treated. He started to feel better almost immediately and that was that. Or so we thought. Today, he didn?t eat anything and he had a lot of gas last night. When Dorian gets too much gas, his belly swells up like a balloon and he can?t get any of it out. It can be a dangerous situation and one that has sent him to the hospital twice now.

So, when he started feeling worse in the late morning, Irving decided to take him to the doctor to get him checked out and to make sure we caught anything early enough to treat it before major interventions were necessary. By the time he got Dorian in to see the doctor, the poor kid was vomiting. Irving called to tell me that he thought the doctor would send them straight to the hospital, which freaked me out because I wasn?t with them and Dorian has never gone into the hospital without his mama by his side. I felt awful!

Fortunately, our doctor knows how badly Dorian does in the hospital and agreed that he would be better off at home and we could give him an enema if required, but he also had some medication to help reduce the gas and to relax Dorian?s intestines. Irving and Dorian came home and Irving hurried right back out to work.

Poor Dorian felt pretty bad. His stomach was so swollen and he was nauseous. I made a bed for him on the couch and we watched a movie with Dante. Before the movie was over, he was vomiting. The medicine that I gave him didn?t stay down at all and he was miserable, the skin on his tummy shiny and stretched. So, I did what the doctor had told us to do and got out the enema. Dorian was not impressed, but he understood why it was necessary and he was in pain and uncomfortable. Just as we were getting things ready, he let out the world?s biggest fart! And then another. His belly visibly deflated and he started to laugh. ?Well, that worked just fine!? he said.

Feeling better, he decided to move into his room and go to bed as normal, which surprised me because he is usually all about staying near me when he?s sick. As I tucked him in, I said, ?I?ll be right outside the door working on the couch. . . ?

?I know. If I need you, you?ll come right away and help me.? He said very confidently. ?I love you, Mama.?

Turn That Baby!

We went to the doctor last night and found out that while Dominic is nice and healthy (as am I, though I?ve gained back all but 9 lbs that I lost, sigh), he?s breech. Not good at 34 weeks. The doctor was a bit worried after feeling the baby?s position, so he got out the ultrasound and checked amniotic fluid levels. The good news? Dominic has lots of fluid, so he has another week or two to get his head pointed down. And if he doesn?t? Well, we?ll be scheduling a C-section for the third week of February.

I have only had natural births and C-sections have always sounded pretty scary to me, but I have to admit, the idea of being able to say, ?I?m having a baby on THIS day? is pretty darn appealing with the way work is. Not appealing enough to actually do it if I don?t have to, but it didn?t scare me as badly as I thought it would when he said that we were looking at surgery. Still, we?ll be working to get the little guy flipped around and hopefully he?ll show up at the end of February, just like he should.

In other news, the ultrasound weight estimate was that Dominic is already 7 lbs. SEVEN POUNDS, folks! I nearly had a heart attack. Dorian weighed in at 7 lbs 6 oz, Dante was 8 lbs. Even the doctor said, ?Um, it looks like this is going to be a really big baby!? Of course, a lot of babies born here seem to be 5-6 lbs, so when Dante was born, the nurses were stunned that he was so ?huge!? and told me they were impressed I pushed him out so quickly. I?m thinking it won?t go so quickly with a 9-10 pounder. However, some of the ladies in my due date club informed me that an ultrasound estimate can be up to 3 lbs off, so hopefully he?s a little smaller than that. Unless he plans to flip around and come out next week, in which case, it?s fine if he?s seven lbs already.

And finally, we talked to the doctor about the hospitals that he works in and he gave us a MUCH better price than we?d previously heard. Nearly half the amount. While it?s still a bit much for us at this point, there may be a possibility of having Dominic in the private hospital, depending on how well I do with work in the next six weeks. We shall see.