Tuesday, September 27, 2011

My weekend

So here am I am sitting at my desk, right about the enter the super busy time of the year... YEAR END. And i cant help but smile when i think about how great my weekend was.  It started off a little rocky when i had a doctor's appointment on Friday and realized i gained over 20 lbs already. YIKES. That was a bit of a sticker shock, considering i haven't had a month yet where i have gained over 5 lbs and here i am with a 8lbs gain . That's 2 lbs away from 10 lbs in ONE month! welp.  But i am trying to be ok with it. And i say that right after i just popped a few pieces of candy in my mouth.

Anyway, after the appointment  I met up with a few old friends. LL (who just got married and i went to HS and grade school with) BUT also went to UD who was visiting her old roommates that i was also friends with. One who lived right across the hall from me sophomore year and right down the hall from me freshmen year, JC. Also saw MS who is amazingly sweet. I saw her at LL's wedding last month for the first time in over a year and when she saw me this time she brought me a little baby present! I couldn't believe it, people like that are gem's in the world.  The entire afternoon was filled with laughing, catching up, tons of loove. They are such good people, so supporting, AND so caring.  You cant help but feel good to be around people like that.

Friday night we went up to Dayton to Chappy's bar to send off my friend JS who is going on a civilain deployment assignment in Iraq and Afghanistan for 6 months. It was fun to catch up with more old friends who came in to town to see him off, and just hang out.  It was such a good day, and i couldn't wait to wake up for Saturday because that is the couples shower J and S were throwing for us.  It was SO nice and everyone who came (and there were quite a few) really meant a lot to us. We invited only friends so no family were invited and kept it a little smaller.  I was blown away by the thoughtfulness and generosity of some of our friends. In fact, i am still in awe of it all. And i need to remember these times when i feel down, because we have SO many good people all around us. We are so blessed.   After the shower, we hung out at the bar with A, J, S, J and Matt while we waited for S's husband to come pick her up. It was relaxed and it felt good, I wish some of these great friends of ours didnt live in Dayton but in the same city as matt and I.

We didnt do anything exciting or eventful the rest of the weekend, but the weather was beautiful! It was upper 70s, no humidity and SUNNY! It was gorgeous, and it just put us in a great mood.  We ran some errands and went on a walk with Odie, relaxed the rest of the weekend. It was so nice. Yesterday was our 2nd anniversary and we celebrated by going to Carlos and Johnny's for a great steak dinner.

This week is moving along slowly, the weather is grey and cooler, and it feels like the season has officially changed. But even through all the gloominess outside, we have  enough sunshine to last us for a little while. And we are getting closer to the big day when we get to meet the little guy.

MS, Me, LL, JC and AG at Starbucks

Monday, September 19, 2011

Reason ten billion and one

I don't have much time to update or write, but I just cant reiterate on here how much I love my husband. He is always so loving and kind to me, and always knows how to make me feel better. While we were waiting in line to get our lunch this afternoon, I don't know what i said but he told me he was thinking last night before he went to sleep that he just loves me so much and wishes he could spend a million years with me.  I felt like tearing up because I know the feeling.

I am so lucky.

Until next time....

Friday, September 16, 2011

The Balancing Act: Work vs Family

Today I spent a couple hours at Leadership Development Event for the higher graded DoE employees who are women.  It was a panel discussion for Women in the Senior Executive Service (SES)- which are the highest leadership positions within the federal government. It was really interesting and it gave me a lot to think about regarding the balancing act between being a working mom and building my career, and being a family mom and shelving all those ideologies.

It really is a struggle to think about- especially now for the a little guy on the way. The ideas really never came into my mind until now. I have always thought i'd work hard, make a good amount of money, and live a successful life. Especially going through the MBA program at UD it is one heck of a male dominated, COMPETITIVE environment. It's very dog eat dog and the best rise to the top. You worked hard for you A's, and you knew the handful of others in the 'A group' because the rest weren't as competitive nor did they do the time.  That lends well with a new and young professional entering the workforce. I was confident and competitive when i got to my job 5 years ago. In fact, i was motivated and energized by my boss who really believes in me. She was my champion and threw me into all kinds of projects i knew NOTHING about but got my name out there.  And i am thankful for that, because i am doing pretty well right now.

So now what is next for me? I know I wont be in this position forever. It's not good for me professionally to stay in one place, but does that means it's also not good for me personally?  These women in the SES (Senior Executive Service) make a lot of money, but put in a lot of time... and are also the most likely to be asked to move around both organizationally and geographically.    You need to work hard to apply and be accepted into one of the positions, but is the reward worth it?

One of the panelist talked about passion at work and putting in long days. Lately i have been feeling a little passionless at work, i look forward to getting home and hanging out with my husband, friends and family. I look forward to weekends filled with fun activities. These women didnt really talk about their home lives, in fact many worked a lot of weekends. Only one spoke of her children and how she couldn't do it all without her support network of neighbors, family, and friends.   Prioritizing is critical-- and that keeping a clean house and having a home cooked meal is NOT a priority.   But how do you figure out what your priorities are?  And then where do you find what passion (work or home) is more important?

Do I feel the way i feel because I didn't have a working mom a lot of my childhood? I wonder if my perspective would be different. I talked to my boss about it briefly whose mom worked when she was growing up. She is also very successful right now, does that mean if i worked through most of my kid's growing up it would be hard but that they would have two role models for hard work and dedication. What is the right choice?

This never seemed to be an issue twenty years ago. Women were not generally in the workforce. And even now, this issue really only applies to women. Even though we are much more prevelant in executive positions, it is only women who need to take time off to have children. Some women decide having children is not as important as having a successful career and make the choice as ONE or the other. Why is that the case?  This doesn't seem fair either.

I guess I dont know if i will ever solve the answer here on this little blog of mine... but it is something i have thought a lot about as we are now starting a family. My paradigm has definitely shifted from the 'Work Hard- Play Hard LATER' mentality. I do want to be around my kids a lot of the time, i just have to figure out how that jives with my job. Or if i will always have a job..... I just dont know.  How do you figure it all out? I just don't think there is a balance, i don't know if you can have both. Or can you? There is no need to play super women, no one can do it all.... but how much can you really do and still feel fulfilled and satisfied? Rarely have i heard a dedicated mother talk about how unsatisfied she is though....

Just something to think about....

Monday, September 12, 2011

Dear Baby (entry 1)

Dear Baby,

I cant believe how big you are getting inside that belly of mine. And I still cant believe how fast these months have gone since you were just a little glimmer in our eyes. Your official due date was exactly 3 months from this past Saturday, but I have a little feeling you are as anxious to meet us as we are to meet you that you will be making your arrival a few days early.

We have some names picked out for you, so far the top runners are Michael (Mike), Christopher (Chris), and Nicholas (Nick).... well, those are the names your dad and I could agree on together. Even though my list was a little bit longer.  Who knows when we will officially decide,  but we hope you like whatever name we pick. We want it to sound strong and successful like we know you will be.

You have been one ACTIVE little fella these past few months that i have been able to feel you. I cant quite figure your schedule out, but i feel you all the time during the day. You haven't really given me any trouble, you seem to be in a good position, although sometimes i wish you would move down a bit because i have a hard time breathing sometimes.  And sometimes you give me indigestion.... but hey, as long as you are comfortable I think i can handle it. I know you really like going on walks and exercising, you  go ot sleep really quickly during those times. I hope the same tricks apply when you are outside. I also haven't discovered if you like some foods or others based on what i have been eating and your level or movement. I have been eating a lot of fruits (grapes, strawberries, nectarines, etc) almost daily so i hope you like those. I also each s good amount of raw veggies daily (like carrots and tomatoes) so i hope you have grown some fondness to those as well. I just want you to be healthy and strong when you grow up.  I did eat quite a bit of pasta when i was in Italy a couple weeks ago-- so either you will love it or hate it with the lack of variety those days. I apologize for that.

We are still getting ready for you and acquiring items so you are comfortable when you come home. We want you to feel comfortable, safe and warm... and of course VERY loved. Your big brother Odie is also very anxious to meet you, although he will probably want to lick you all over.  I think you two will love each other a lot as you grow up.   You have a lot too forward to in the next 3 months!

I cant wait to see what's in store for you and us, i am am trying to savor this time before you arrive because i know you will change a lot of things for us. For the better, of course... but lots of changes. You dad cant wait, he tells me ALL the time.  He talks to you too, although he gets really close and it probably sounds loud. He says he loves you every day.   Keep on growing in there, see you in a few more weeks!!


The 27 week update

So last week was a brief peak in the Fall with temperatures in the 60s and low 70s, it seemed like so much has happened since i last updated. I went to Italy a couple weeks ago on vacation and it was really nice and relaxing. It was hot and we did LOTS of walking-- and that was nice-- but also ate SO.MUCH.PASTA! Delicious, o yes, but SO MUCH!! It's nice to be back to the comforts of American fair and routine. Even though work is tiring lately.

Not much has happened in the week i have been back, just catching up with people and trying to get ready for baby. I went shopping and dinner with E last week and loved every second of it.  I didnt buy anything but it was good time spent. And her MOM made us a baby blanket made with blue, sparkly silver, yellow and white yarn. My favorite colors. AND it was HAND MADE!! It was insanely thoughtful, i am still tickled by it when i think about it. We also caught up with B & A for A 30th birthday party, and the N's since Matt's dad was in China last week as well.  Tonight I am going to the Reds game with J & A, to make it feel like summer again compared to last week.  It was a busy and quick week last week, today is the first full week back and it's feel a little daunting.

At 27 weeks the baby's arrival seems ever so close!! Our first shower is just a couple weeks away! We made a big purchase on Friday night and bought our crib and that made it feel EVEN closer. When we went to buy it was realized it was on back order for 9-12 weeks, and the crazy part-- THAT IS TOO MUCH TIME TO WAIT!!   Luckily there was one still in stock in the Lexington store so it was moved to the one in Mason and we just need to pick it up.  WE also need to move some furniture out of the office and start searching for a dresser and a changing table (both of which i am way less picky about) but get them together and upstairs.  Then it will really start feeling real when i walk passed the nursery every day.  And every day Matt and i both tell each other how much we CANNOT wait to meet this little guy! I know it's bad to wish time away, but it sure it flying!!