Monday, September 24, 2012

So that time I was pregnant and fell off the face of the internet?

Yeah, so apparently working, being pregnant and moving house all at the same time is not a smart idea. Who would have thought?!?

I nievely thought that moving while 7 months pregnant would be a breeze. Yeah sure I'd be moving a little slower but in the end it would be no big deal and I would just take an extra long nap after the day was done. 


I didn't factor in nesting. Or the fact that the rental market in Ireland is so freaking competitive at the moment (people kept saying it was a renters market...they are MISINFORMED). Or the fact that we had collected even MORE stuff in the year we had lived in our last house. (on that note, how in the world did I move over in 5 suitcases and manage to collect an entire house full of stuff in under 3 years...augh!) and the fact that everytime I try and bend down there is no gaurantee that I will be able to get back up, or even be able to bend all the way down. 

But after two months of house hunting, a nearly two weeks between two houses and cleaning more corners, toilets, floors and cabinents than I care to think about we are in the hew house. And its fantastic, and roomy, and it has everything on our wish list and more. And we have fantastic landlords who we actually like and get on with and care about thier property. 

So yeah, I'm never moving again.I've looked at the costs of hiring people to move your stuff and it is well worth every red cent. 

The bonus to moving was that I got a fresh start in a new house and was able to have my slave hubs set up the nursery

 I'm so happy to have it set up and now I can fill in the bits and ends. We are in total baby mode over here, im trying to have everything as ready as possible before november so I can spend the lead up to christmas, thanksgiving and hubs birthday enjoying that time and not having to fight the shopping crowds to buy baby stuff!

 These are some cardigans that James's aunt knitted us. I can't believe how great they turned out and she even did them in red white and blue since I'm American haha!

Also I have gotten very..."roundy". Thats the word I'm using since it sounds better to me than massive. I feel massive though. A little delusional as well. I tried to wear a pair of pre-pregnancy pants that were big on me the other day...didn't even make it all the way up my hips. sigh.

28 weeks along... I've gotten even bigger since this picture. Still don't have that "glow" people talk about. I think its a conspiracy. 

Annnddd I was saving the best for last....we got our 3D scan done in August (i know it was kinda early but I seriously couldn't wait any longer, I was worse than a kid on Christmas morning) and got to see our little baby and find out what we are having....


ok, not the best picture quality. Its a picture taken by my phone of a picture of something inside my stomach so forgive me for the poor quality. But thats baby taylor! and its a BOY! I have to say the 3D scan was worth every penny. It was so great getting to see him and see him move around and his face and the fact that he has my fingers and chin and his dad's forehead (yikes! that won't be fun come December). He was a really active baby which made it hard to get a great picture of his face, but it was probably one of my top ten cool moments in life. More of those to come no doubt! Its been 5 or 6 weeks since the scan so I know hes a lot bigger by now and I can't wait to see what the final product is gonna look like in a few months! 

Sorry this post is so baby-centric. Right now thats pretty much taken over my life. But thankfully things have slowed down a LOT for me and I'm looking forward to getting back on track and back into the blogging world (lets not even talk about how many blogs are on my reader at the moment...) and I'm also so happy to never move again. Did I mention that already?

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Ten on Tuesday

I'm playing my favorite blogging link up with my favorite blogger Lin who is awesome and gets to drink McDonald's iced coffee whenever she wants. No, no I'm not jealous about that at all. (ok well, maybe I am.)

1. Speaking of McDonald's- I actually don't eat there...I think their food is disgusting and I'm not a fan of them as a company. BUT I do love their chocolate milkshakes in addition to their iced coffee and I'm not so high and mighty in my "values" to not give in to a thick and creamy milk shake every so often. Especially while preggers. I'm technically not meant to have any soft serve ice cream from a machine since it could have listeria but I'm pretending like milk shakes don't count. (Denial never tasted so yummy!)

2. Pretty much all ten of these things are going to be baby related. Already it seems that my brain power which was devoted to things like politics, art, business and other adult related topics (ok and lets be honest, a healthy serving of reality tv and gossiping) is becoming slowly replaced with questions like "Do babies use pillows?" and " What is this pain?" "Did I look this big yesterday?" and every time I hear a name I automatically pair it up with my last name to either make it a potential name or dismiss it. (right now the majority of names don't make it past the reject process) I can only imagine how bad this is going to get when I ACTUALLY have the child. SIGH.

3. I went to the doctor today. Here is something super frustrating about living overseas....not being able to directly access your medical records from childhood. I mean, I got copies of my records before moving to Ireland, but apparently they aren't as comprehensive or extensive as the doctors office would have. I got a card from the Maternity hospital saying that my bloods came back as type O negative, rhesus negative. But as far as I was aware I am blood type A negative. What the what? who is right?!? I tried calling my old doctors office in the states. They had no way of verifying I am who I am and wouldn't release any information to me and so the only way of resolving this mystery is getting more bloods taken. And it really hurt last time (whine whine whine!)...also I really hope I'm not O neg since that would mean I need those anti-rejection shots. Huzzah. (whine)

4. I found sour cream and onion Taytos today...they are special edition or something but that doesn't matter...totally made my day haha. That flavor is quite uncommon here...instead cheese and onion is the favorite. Now that doesn't sound like its much different but trust me it is. Way too oniony. Blech! (and for the record, the sour cream and onion taytos taste almost exactly like lays. NOM)


 5. We went to Dublin recently and got our baby room furniture ( I wanted to do it while I could still drive up and back to Dublin the same day without being exhausted). I love Ikea but NEVER AGAIN on a Sunday. It was like black friday. I nearly had to beat someone with an efficient Swedish kitchen utensil.

I took this picture while waiting in line to check out....I was trying to show how insane the lines were....I totally failed. And also inadvertently took a picture of this guy in mid-dig. Oops. I didn't notice it at all until after I had uploaded it to facebook and everyone was commenting on it. Poor guy (bwahaha) 

6. I've started showing. I probably was before but its more obvious now. I still don't feel like I look pregnant, but that I look more like I've had wayyy too much take out. Sigh. Its happening FAST though...I took these pictures 4 days apart...FOUR DAYS. 
And a few days later...
Maybe there isn't but I feel like there is a BIG difference in just 4 days. Pants that zipped the weekend previous don't even come close to closing now! I am firmly in maternity pants now...and yes, they are as comfortable as everyone says.  
7. What is this Magic Mike that everyone is going on about? I haven't seen a single commercial for it...only seen people talking about it on facebook. Hate it when I'm out of the loop like that!

8. The weather has been so crap here lately! No more rain....I protest! I have given up on summer for Ireland once again. Third time unlucky! Maybe next summer....hope springs eternal?

9. I heard the baby's heartbeat for the first time today. It was pretty cool...and so weird to think that was inside of me! Kinda makes it all the more real. I want time to slow down and speed up all at the same time so I can get a 3d scan and see what this little person looks like! (and if its a boy or a girl!)

10. I haven't been blogging much lately but I plan on getting to it as soon as I'm not spending every day off running errands all day long. I'm so over due for a sitting on the couch watching bad day time tv day. Must be more lazy. My bed misses me.

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

An expat grumble

Here in Ireland sometimes things happen that are absolutely unacceptable and ridiculous and the worst part is that people just accept it because, well, what else are they going to do? This part of the culture DRIVES ME MAD because these are things that typically would not be allowed to happen in the for instance what is going on with the banking system.

Banks here are, well, not so popular at the moment. Banks are not popular universally but I think here in Ireland there is a special kind of highway robbery that the banks here get away with well, because "no one else is doing anything so why should I" kind of attitudes that exist here. The government fees and levy's on each account are insane as are the amount of money you need to keep in your account to avoid such fees (like the Bank of Ireland, I was told the amount I need to keep in my account to avoid charges was 1,400 Euros...seriously who in these days has that kind of money to keep lying around in their checking account?!? Not I friends, not I.)

Anyways, The bank I am with (Ulster Bank is the bank in reference...I am all for calling them out!!)  has been having a few issues...and by a few issues I'm talking about the total and complete collapse of their systems. They are having "technical issues" which mean that NO ONE is getting their money into their accounts, Their direct debits aren't being paid and basically your SCREWED. This started about 2 weeks ago and I figured that no bank would seriously let an issue that big extend beyond a day or two, at most a week. And since I only get paid once a month (Seriously. It blows the big one.) I wasn't worried about not getting my pay in my account.

 This means "Show me the money" in Irish

Well I haven't been paid. And I've been waiting close to a week now. Its been over TWO weeks and they still have nothing fixed! Last Friday we were told it would be fixed by Monday, over the weekend we were told it would be fixed by the middle of this week. This morning I heard on the radio it is not expected to be resolved by the end of this week. HOW FRUSTRATING. I know banks are having issues, but this is beyond ridiculous! And no offense to any Irish person reading this blog, but I know that it wouldn't fly in the States. Something would have certainly been resolved by now, maybe another bank stepping in or something, but it wouldn't have gone on two weeks extending into three! The banks have a bad enough reputation over here without a total and complete failure of its entire consumer base. And for some reason, we as a collective community are bending over and "taking it". There is nothing that anyone can do and it personally makes me want to pull my hair out sometimes!  This is the flip side of the laid back Irish cultural attitude which is so prevalent here. There are some great things to being to easy going and laid back (like getting pulled over by a Guarda and him giving you a wink and a smile instead of a ticket) and some things that for me, as a type-a American can make me feel enraged (and give the rest of the country something to complain about other than the weather)

Fingers crossed that our money (since James and I are both Ulster lovely!! That will be changing as soon as possible!) will appear in our accounts soon. I'll end my expat rant now...once I get myself started it can be hard to stop myself!

Friday, June 29, 2012

Taking out the old, bringing in the new(ish)

  Last month we finally crossed the first item off our to-do before baby list-
1. Buy a new (ish) car. (With airbags preferably)

So we went from this:

  Ah little red jellybean of death, you were a good car. You kept going long past your expiry date.

 And used a little bit of this:

 Seriously the most Euros I have held at one time...I had to take a picture to prove to myself that yes at some point I have had money.

And got ourselves one of these:

New shiney......its still over a decade old, but we are almost in the current mellinia with our cars now!

And its got all of this:


Here in Ireland you can get cars that are 13, 14, even 15 years old and they will still be in great condition. Its a lot harder to get insane milage on cars since Ireland is only but so big. My '96 Corsa only had 83,000 when I sold her to the big car lot in heaven (scrapped!). We were able to get this car with only 103,000 miles on it and its 13 years old!

I have to say, I'm loving the new car. I HATED to drive the last car and I'm really enjoying the small things like a cupholder and listening to the radio. Who knew a 13 year old used car could bring so much happiness?!? One thing I am really thankful for as well is the airbags. Our last car was a basic as basic gets. I felt really uncomfortable driving it after finding out I was pregnant since there was no airbags...meaning if I got into an accident there was nothing between my abdomen and the steering wheel! Also I would have never put a car seat in the last car!

As much as I disliked my last car I felt pretty nostalgic about letting it go. It was the first car I bought in Ireland....we had NOTHING when I first moved here and I had to start over from scratch. Buying that little car (for 400 euro mind you!) was a huge step for me in making a life for myself here. I drove her back and forth all over the city, county (and once even to Dublin!) for nearly two years! I learned how to drive manual in her, and on the wrong side of the road/car. So I did feel sad as I drove off the lot and left the little red jellybean behind. But now I have a lot to look forward to and I'm hoping my new car (name pending!) will be able to deliver the same kind of durability that I got from my first car (and not cost me too much in petrol!)

And now next on the list....a DRYER!!

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Baby does exist

Man oh man, I thought people were exaggerating about baby brain. Well they aren't. I have never been so forgetful and so slow on the uptake in my life. I forget what I'm talking about mid sentence....I am continually misplacing things (I discovered I put all the cat food in the fridge the other day) I'm mixing up my words in my sentences and if I don't make lists of what I intend of doing that day then its probably not getting done!

I've always prided myself on my sharp mind, memory and my quick wit....well for the next few months thats all gone to the wayside!

This is a perfect example:

This little silly internet meme....A silly stupid joke. That I didn't get. For 3 days. I finally said it to James after I saw a fourth person sharing it on facebook. And then it took him about 5 minutes to explain it to me. And then I laughed at myself for about 5 more minutes. And then cried, just a little.

Hormones...yet another awesome side effect.

Can't wait to share more of my baby brain moments with you guys...they are happening at an alarming rate!

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Some Thursday tidbits

I really should be getting ready for work right now, but I really really don't want to work today. The one time in my life I should be feeling like working overtime to save money for the baby but I just wanna lay on the couch. Boo responsibility!

  • I really gotta get James driving now that he has a job. I am having to wake up hours before I need to so I can drive him to the other side of town for work. Still super happy about the job, not loving my chauffeur duties though. 
  • My neighbor is a bad guy gangster, for real. His job involves a lot of, lets just say illegal things. We've known about it for a while but here you keep your head down and mouth shut about these things. Doing other wise will get you in some hot water since the Guarda (police) have no real power to stop these gang families. Recently though he has gotten a lot more open about the entire situation. Yesterday the road in front of my house was full of cars with English reg plates (license plates) and several men watching the house. And all watching me as I got in my car to go to work. Seriously I hate being intimidated just trying to live my life. Can't wait until our lease is up and we are the HELL out of here. 
  • I love fruit....I used to not be such a fan but I feel like some of the produce we get here in Ireland can be better quality than the stuff in the states (even if it is from Spain and Africa) There are certain things though, that you just can't get here. Like good cantaloupe (my fave) or a real watermelon. They are tiny here and cost a fortune! I must take a picture the next time I come across them in the grocery store! 
  • I'm meant to go to Belgium in October for a Radiohead concert. I bought the tickets way back in February before little baby Taylor was even a zygote. Little did I know come October i will be somewhere in the 8 month mark. Yikes...I really hope I get to go...this may be my last chance for a very long time and besides, who doesn't want to see Belgium? I hear good things and am a big fan of both waffles and chocolate! 
  • I just bought a groupon for a cruise around the Cliffs of Moher and a trip to one of the Aran Islands for only 15 euros....Freaking steal! I'm sure the weather will be crap, but hopefully the views will be so cool I won't care about it!
  • Something that makes me smile every morning when I hear it....some of the radio stations here do traffic reports....for the entire country. I find this hilarious that the country can be so small that you can cover all major problem areas in under 2 minutes reporting. 
Sigh....back to the real world. Time to layer up and head off to work. Only one more day before my weekend though! woohoo! 

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Ten on Tuesday

I'm playing my "Will always blog this on a Tuesday" blog along with Lin over at Linny's Vault....go check her out- 1. Cause shes awesome and 2. Cause its her blogiversay and shes the one giving away stuff. That's doubly awesome!!

 1. I have a head cold/sinus infection/something evil going on right now. So unfair. I think pregnant women should get a pass on all sorts of normal ailments since our bodies are pretty much in self destruct mode while carrying a mini human.
Anyways since I can't take most medication right now I've been suffering Au natural...they have this amazing stuff in Ireland called Olbas Oil...someone introduced me (or as the Irish would say, copped me onto it) this stuff last winter when I was sick. Basically its like an Altoid, in oil form, concentrated. Put a little on a tissue and breathe in. Its heaven...I reek of it right now, but I don't care cause I can breathe!

 2. One of our friends gave me an orchid when she found out that we were expecting. Super sweet and I LOVE orchids, I just happen to have a very bad habit of killing them shortly after getting them...I'm delighted to say I have kept this bad boy alive for 2 months now! Maybe I am ready to take care of a child after all! (baby steps rach, baby steps)

Look-it! Thriving and everything! 

 3. My sister sent this to me in an email the other night. She knows me and my love of all jokes in the bodily functions category too well.

 4. I went to my first sleepover in about 10 years the other night. Two of our good friends are getting married in July and the bride-to-be had her Hen (or as we call them in the States, bachorlette party) over the weekend. Those of us who couldn't afford the Hen (as they can run pretty pricey) decided to spend some time with her at a girls sleep over! We had pizza and watched bad chick flicks and of course, played the toilet paper dress game...where we had a 3 way tie so the losers won the prize haha! It was lots of fun and its so nice to do things in Ireland that don't involve THE PUB.

 5. Ok, so this no caffeine while pregnant thing? I'm calling bull-shit. There I've said it. I have given up drinking (no big deal for me), smoking (bigger deal, but I wanted to quit anyways) and I've gone off crisps (potato chips) and chocolate. I am drinking all the coffee and diet coke that I want. I mean, obviously I won't drink more than I would normally would but I'm not going caffeine free. This is a recent enough medical thing and I really don't think I am going to harm my child by having a cup of coffee. Its actually more of an American taboo in Ireland people would think you were crazy if you told them they couldn't drink tea and coffee because they were expecting. (also my doctor is totally cool with casual drinking while pregnant....I nearly laughed in his face when he said that....obviously the attitudes are more relaxed in this country about these kinds of things...and No, I have no desire to casually drink while pregnant!)

6. My back is killing me. and my left hip. And both of my feet keep on getting charlie horses in them while I'm walking. If you saw me in the grocery store last night I may or may not have resembled Igor from Young Frankenstein.
 Walk this way.....No! This way!
7. Speaking of the grocery stores....Irish grocery stores can be extremely frustrating. It was super hard for me to get used to shopping here. I mean I have by this stage, but there are still things that I don't know if I will ever get used to. Like product disappearing and the chances of it never coming back likely. This is a common occurrence. I think I am going to dedicate a separate post to this one...I can feel a vent coming on.

8. James was in a village called Kilkee for a couple of days last week. Its the biggest "beach town" in the area and where everyone in Limerick goes for their seaside holidays. In the two years I've lived here I had never made it down to Kilkee so I was pretty excited to get to go down Saturday to pick James up and have lunch with some of the boys (who were on an "anti-hen" weekend).

 Me on the "beach"....don't was super windy and FREEZING outside. Perfect beach weather right??

 The view is pretty nice when I'm not in the way haha! Kilkee is like a small Inlet I'm guessing...I would consider this more of a bay than anything...but I was told otherwise. What do I know.

Annndddd this is pretty much the ENTIRE "beach" and a good majority of the village your seeing here in this picture. I will NEVER get over how small the beaches are here. I mean, they are TINY. Of course when I say this I always get scoffed at and told well "don't you think your just great with your big huge American beaches" and blah blah. I mean, I've seen plenty of beaches in England which are all small enough, but a hell of a lot bigger than the ones in Ireland! Not that there's anything wrong with that....I just wouldn't call it a beach, per se.
The village was nice, but very small. Big enough by Irish standards I suppose. I don't think I could spend more than one night there before going nuts. We had a lovely, extremely over priced lunch before we left. At least it wasn't raining! haha!

9. I broke the screen on my phone and I'm using my back up phone. I really miss my phone...I will not bitch about my phone anymore. I also didn't realize how phone-dependent I was. Thank god for phone insurance. Must not drop it in the future.

10. Its about 10:30 at night and still really bright out. Its the time of the summer where the sun doesn't set until around 11, sometimes 11:30 at night (on a really sunny day). I am loving the longer days, but I find it irritating when I have to wake up super early and its too bright to sleep in the bedroom....I really shouldn't complain since I will be craving this come December when its dark by 3:30 in the afternoon....