Friday, August 31, 2012

Oh deer.....

Today I woke up with a plan.  
I had ordered equipment a little while back and it came in 2 shipments.  The actual equipment, and the laptop that powers it.  I made the mistake of taking the laptop to the office.  I decided once the equipment got here, the two really make more sense together, obviously.  
I figured I would load up the new equipment, cruise on down to Effingham, and spend a few hours setting it up and doing some training.  Perfect, low stress, light work for an overdue gal.  

At about 8 I got a call from Zac saying that the tracking number that has given us no info for days, was active and that one of the computers for the office was going to be delivered today....between 12:30 and 4:30.  My plans were foiled!

I decided to make the best of it, get a few things done around the house.  I have a cabinet I want to move out, which meant finding homes for the stuff in the bottom of it, and the painting of a new cabinet.  I also needed to make room for Cliff's bottles and baby accessories next to all the other cups.  
Ya know, nesting stuff that I kinda like to do.  

I decided I would also make a trip to mom's to use her big washing machine for my comforter and paint said replacement cabinet while it washed.  All was going swimmingly until about 11.  

On my way to mom's five, that's right, FIVE deer ran out of the cornfield and across the road.  
In the middle of the stinking day!
I braked, but there was no swerving. 
The mini-van didn't make it out unscathed. 
It was fully scathed. 

Immediately the engine stopped running.  I lost power steering.
I pulled over into the gravel at a little cemetery right down the road from Annie's house and took a minute to stare unbelievably at my car.  

The engine literally stopped when I hit the deer.  
I was going 38 miles per hour.  I was running at 1000 RPM.  I know because they are frozen.
The electrical system was down for the count.  
I made the mistake of putting the car into park....and then my key wouldn't come out of the ignition.  
Damn the bad luck.  

My poor van...

I called Dad first to find out where he was in the world and see why he thought the engine was acting so crazy.  He was too far away to take a look or give me a tow.  
My next 2 calls were to my insurance agent, and then the police.  
After that I called my sister Annie to tell her I may need a ride.
Then I called Mom to try to keep her from a panic.  Dad had gotten to her first.  Luckily she was not as stirred up as I had expected.  

Annie drove down to check on me and the van.  She asked if she should wait.  I told her to go get her errands done.  No sense in 3 of us waiting instead of just one.  The officer pulled in just as she was heading out, so the timing was good.  He worked on the report.  I called a tow truck.  
Then, finally, called Zac.  His response was, "Oh no!  That sucks.  Sorry about your van.  At least everything is ok."  
He is not one to get mad.  I appreciate that.  
Shortly thereafter the paperwork was done.  I called Mom to see about a ride.  
Unfortunately Penelope had just went to sleep, so I decided to take Office Wood up on his offer and catch a ride with him back to town.  

A couple of notes for you ladies....when you are giant and pregnant, yoga pants, spaghetti strap tanks, and flip flops are very comfortable. 
They are not, however, your best "leaving the house" look.  
Turns out, you may be wearing black pants and a navy tank when a small disaster happens.

Also, should you ever find yourself super pregnant and in need of a ride, a police cruiser has a large computer unit that takes up most of the passenger seat, so you will be riding in the back of the car. 

If you have the presence of mind to remember it, you will also be taking your baby's carseat with you, in preparation for his impending arrival.  
All of these things will make you feel ridiculous....and give you a reputation.

Watch out girls.  Cliff isn't even here yet, and he has already had his first run in with the law.  
He is an irresistable bad boy. 
His mom wears clothes that are too tight for public and assaults animals with large, grey minivans.
We are already quite the pair. 

Zac and I are now down to a 2 door Gran Prix.  We will be riding dirty to the hospital. 
 Turns out dinking up your van around noon on a holiday weekend means nothing will happen until after your baby is born (regardless of if that happens in 1 day, or 7).  Apparently, after working like a man doing renovations, falling off of a porch, and a deer massacre it seems my very stubborn uterus cannot be overworked or startled into contractions.  
We will see if the storms and moon do it.  
I expect not...but just in case, I will be sleeping on one of the puppy training pads I bought in case my water breaks in the night.  I plan ahead...except for when it comes to deer. 

Thursday, August 30, 2012

What's happening with Clifford

Or rather...what's not happening.

I had my appointment on Monday. I have said all along that I was due Aug. 26th.  I mentioned, I think, that Zac and I use what's called the Fertility Awareness Method as our method of birth control.  It really is more simple than people think, and when you understand what's going on, you really have a lot of control.  Shocking that I would want that right? Ha!

Anyway, because of my daily charting, I have always said Aug. 26th was the date I was due.  I was thrilled when my 8 week ultrasound said the 30th, and my 12 week ultrasound estimated the 23rd.  Looks like I had my charting figured out :)

So, I say Monday was my 40 week 2 day check up, they say 39w4d, but whatever.  Weeks and days don't change the fact that nothing was happening.  No dilating.  No effacing.  No real contractions, just mild cramps.  
I tried to set up my next appointment for Monday, then realized it was a holiday.  
So now, I go back on Wednesday.  By that point I will be 41w4d or 40w6d for them.  
Either way, I am super pregnant. 
I am pregnant plus.  

I fully expect that if Cliff is not here by that point, I will go back Wednesday evening and they will start the induction process.  I am ok with that.  He will be well cooked at that point.  
I will have waited as long as I am interested in waiting anyway. 

I have had a few more contractions today, but I think that I was dehydrated....nothing consistent.  Nothing worth a second thought really. For sure nothing to make me thing I'm making much progress. 
But this weekend is a full moon.  And I hear that can shake things up a bit.  
We shall see.

Now I just have to wrap my mind around the fact that I really will be a mom quick, fast, and in a hurry. I am on the countdown with Zac.  T minus 6 days, at max, before we have a fat man that requires our full attention and we are no longer a party of 2.
  I feel ready, and completely unprepared at the same time.  
It is quite the dichotomy of hormone-fueled emotion.  
I can only look forward to the melt down I have at the hospital when he gets here.
And the melt down I have at home when I see my post-baby body, post-shower.  
Here's to hoping my mental preparations will make up for the crazy estrogen/progesterone swing :)

Tuesday, August 28, 2012


It would seem that the end of my pregnancy has been all about finishing up projects.  Namely the office (and in utero fattening up of Clifford.)  The last big thing on the list (aside from future x-ray unit install...sorry family) was completing the floors.  After all the drywalling and painting, they were a mess. 

I decided to do carpet tiles in my adjusting bays so my tables wouldn't slide around and so that it might be a little easier on me than concrete floors.  The rest of the office we were going to repaint with garage floor epoxy.  For both, the floors needed to be super clean.  

On Monday, I knew I had a little time to head to the office.  I knew that that prep work meant a lot of scrubbing floors on my hands and knees.  Unfortunately, as I was heading to my OB appointment that morning I wiped out off of the second step of my porch.....thought I was on the first step.  I landed on all fours and scraped up my knees like a little kid.  Seriously, who skins their knees?
The most ironic part is that I was literally on my way to see my Uncle Doug and borrow a pair of knee pads from him in preparation for the aforementioned Cinderella-style scrubbing.  
It was a bummer.  It is still a bummer.  

Anyway....Zac and I headed to Effingham Thursday to get crackin on the majority of the space.  Jade said he would help with the epoxy, since he had done it before.  That gave us about 8 hours to get all the prep work done.  There was lots...I was overwhelmed.  

First things first, Zac had to finish putting up the rubber trim in the new bays, so all of the carpet tiles would be slightly over the trim instead of some above and some below.  While he did that, I rolled around a mop bucket of hot water and used a scrub sponge to get all of the paint and drywall off of the floors.

After the paint and drywall were up, I mopped the floors.  Then mopped them again, and sometimes a 3rd time with a regular mop.  I basically haven't stopped cleaning those damn floors.  It was an exercise in futility, but ya know....I am anal retentive and couldn't deal with NOT trying...
Anyway, I mopped, then I steam cleaned them.  And then I steamed them again.  
It was the most frustrating process EVER!  
Every pass created a new slightly dusty line after it dried.  
I wanted to bawl.  
I almost did.  

After I finally got the 3 adjusting bays "clean" I marked the center of the bay for Zac and he set to work cutting and laying floor tile.  

I was worried about peel-n-stick tile.  I prayed that it wasn't as super cheap and awful as it could be.  Turns out, that adhesive is no joke.  I was super impressed.  Not bad for a little more than $1/square foot.  

Zac finished my big bay first, and then I cleaned drywall dust off of all of my equipment and slowly started the process of moving everything into the bay so we could do the main space.

(The wall color is much more accurate in this picture...I told ya the walls were not dark as night. )
Anyway, don't you love my blue chairs?  I just happened to get luck in finding them at a thrift store.  
Their arms/legs are close to my 3 waiting room chairs (which are bright green, orange and blue), plus I got them for $4 a piece, so you can't beat that.  

Next he went to work on the little bays. 
Mind you, this ENTIRE time I was still kneepadded up, scrubbing floors.  This picture was about 5 hours into our day.  The process was not fast.  

After Jade got there, he helped Zac move the tables out of the way of the main space.  If you were to come to my office, this is where you would be worked on.  Get excited!

As the boys got started on the epoxy, I had to finish the process of floor prep in the rest of the office.  
They painted, I mopped, steamed, scooted and taped trim.  

Every stinking piece of trim was taped.  

Let me tell ya, this is hard to do with a 39+week belly and a dinged up knee.  

The boys started in the back of the office, and worked their way forward.  Zac trimmed, Jade rolled, then sprinkled the floors.  The floors were looking fab!

As they worked closer to me, we all decided I should take a break and get away from the fumes.  
I ran and got the boys tea from McDonalds.  

As seems to be a running theme for me lately, I promptly let my late pregnancy clumsiness overtake me and I knocked a tea off of the ledge and onto my brand new carpet tiles.  Damn.

The boys continued working hard. 

Jade had the sprinkle technique pretty much nailed.  Sadly, almost immediately after this picture Jade broke his roller frame.  There was no way to get to the other frames.  I had to go to Menards at 8:30.  It was lame.  I waddled as fast as I could.  

The boys finished the rest of the office in all of ten minutes.

Then we closed up shop, and headed off. 

Zac and I were hungry after a forever long day.  We hit up Steak-N-Shake and I felt like there was a distinct possibility that I may fall asleep at the table.
I was exhausted.  I had mega heartburn.  I had Fred Flinstone's feet.  I still had no contractions.  
Darn this hearty body of mine.  

Have no fear ladies.  I know you all worry about me working too hard.  Friday, I took it easy.  I headed to see my chiropractor (a wise decision after the fall) and stopped by for a massage from the therapist I used to work with.  I also made a sweet dinner and watched t.v. with Zac in the evening.  

Mom and I had big plans to do some office shopping the next day.  I am so pumped to do the decorating and arranging of the office you just don't even know!

Stick around, there will be more pictures soon... of the office and this stubborn baby Clifford!

Monday, August 27, 2012

Painting Fools

Last Saturday was a long, busy day.
 It was painting day at the office.  
I rallied the troops to help me, which meant I had Mom, Maggie, Aunt Jackie and my cousin Ellen on loan from their families for an afternoon.  I showed up a little early to clean and organize and start trimming the ridiculous number of corners.  Maggie had appointments in the morning, but was done by 10:30.  I requested everyone be at Mom's around 11.
The crew picked up lunch and made it to the office just in time to yell at me for being on the step ladder trimming above the front door.  Mom was not having it!  I got a lecture about the dangers of heights and working with my arms above my head.
She is a boss cow.
  I am a defiant cow.    

After lunch I put everyone to work.  With 5 of us, and a whole lotta wall space to cover, I figured 2 people to roll and 3 to trim.  

Maggie volunteered to do the high stuff and be the guy that had to constantly move the ladder around.  This is mostly because she was the only one tall enough to reach the ceiling other than me and there was no way anyone was letting me on the ladder.  Again, the dangers of ladders....  

I took the high rolling, Aunt Jackie took the low.  Mom and Ellen scooted around on the floor painting around the black trim first and then hit all the corners and around the doors.  Notice how every room is slightly open to the others.  This means the entire space is one color.
You all know me.  One color is not my thing. But, its what we had to do.

All in all, the day went really well.  We chit chatted and yammered the whole time.
Aunt Jackie and Mom repeatedly stopped conversation to parrot back what they thought we'd said.  Turns out they are both going deaf and lots of words sound the same, even if they are clearly out of context for the situation.

We started off with 5 gallons of paint.  My whole office is 1200 square feet, and I thought we'd get pretty far with that.  I was wrong.  It all ended up taking 9.  Nine freaking gallons of paint.  After the first 5 were just about empty I left to get 2 more gallons.  I had to leave...because it turns out I don't know my own strength.  I had asked mom to bring me an extender stick.  She brought me a twist on handle to her broom.  I broke the stick right below the threaded part.  I moved on to just painting lower stuff by hand.  I broke the roller handle clean off.  After destroying my entire painting set up the ladies all suggested I take a break.

I was off to Menards.  After "investing" $10 in quality extender sticks and roller frames I made my way back to the office.  I requested that the 2 new gallons of paint be mixed into what was left in the 5 gallon bucket, that way, in case the shade was not 100% perfect, there would be less of a difference.
Aunt Jackie repeatedly said "two gallons is not enough."  To which we would reply that we weren't trying to fill the bucket, we were just mixing the tones.  This exchange happened 3 times I think before I said, "holy shit" in response to the "not enough comment."  Ellen snort laughed and Aunt Jackie finally explained that she meant not enough paint to finish painting the entire office, not fill the bucket.  We finally got through to her that we were not painting the 4 enclosed rooms that day.
Communication is not always our strong suit.

This was the office at the end of the day.  

For some reason the walls look terrible in the picture....and super, super dark.  I swear that's not what it really looks like.  In fact, it kind of begs the question, "why is she posting such terrible, inaccurate pictures?"  Truth is, I don't know why...but I am going to post this anyway.

The next day Zac and I went and finished the painting.  He neglected to warn me that he is a terrible trimmer....and overall not the best painter in the world.  He is, however, diligent and both of us worked forever to get the office done.  We still had a big project ahead of us...the dreaded floors!

Sunday, August 26, 2012

A tale of tea

The worst thing happened to me last night.
Well, not the worst worst, but the most frivolous of worsts.

I have written repeatedly about my love of an iced beverage.  It may border on obsession, but if I can't care, then no one else should either.  

Zac and I had just gotten back into town from loading up some office furniture.  We ran by the water station to fill up our 5 gallon jug before we headed home.  We don't drink the city water.  Zac's taste buds are too highfalutin for it.  I knew, since we were low on water, that what we just got would take a little while to get cold.  I also knew that we were completely out of tea....and ice.   
A terrible combination had already taken shape here people.  
There would be nary a cool drink in sight.
I couldn't have it. 

So, in my infinite wisdom I stopped by McDonald's on the way home and got myself a large tea. (unsweetened....full strength sweet is only for the most hardcore of tea drinkers)
Zac requested a root beer.  He told me that he was gonna "shake it up real quick to get it really cold and then drink it so fast my eyes water... cause my contacts are dry."  

I like a man with a plan, even if that plan is ridiculous.
I supported his decision.  Carbonate up honey!  Make that nose burn and those eyes cry!

Anyway, we quickly arrived home with this beauty in hand.  
Life was good.  Things were on point for being a great evening....then tragedy struck.

Sweet Tea

As I got out of the car the cup flexed, my lid fell off, and the cup slipped from my hand.
Ohhhh it was awful!  
I can still see my poor fractured Styrofoam cup looking up at me from the concrete as the tea seeped from a giant crack in the bottom.  There would be no coming back from the incident.  
And just as fast as I had all that tea glory, I had nothing.

I looked at Zac, and saw my sadness reflected in his face.  
He just said, "I am really sorry that just can have the rest of my root beer."
(That kind of sympathy is what real love is about.) 

So that's my tale folks.  A tale of beverage lost.  
I am gonna dwell on it a bit more...then probably pick up a replacement tea sometime today.
I mean really,  it was sad and awful...but a girl has to have her priorities in last tea would understand.

Friday, August 24, 2012

Eyelash you a question.....

(I know I am supposed to be blogging about painting the office....but I forgot my laptop with pictures at the I can't care.  Today you shall read fodder....and if you have never seen the word fodder and are unsure of it's meaning, I can't care again.)

A couple months back Maggie decided to do a certification program to become an eyelash tech.  
Basically this means that she is even more able to beautify me.  
That's the important part.

She got her certification through a company called Novalash.  She basically individually paints a false eyelash with adhesive and bonds it to your natural lash, making them look amazing.  
And, it lasts for weeks.  When you are super pregnant and have the option of looking better, literally without doing anything, you take it!  Really, if you have the option of looking better without doing anything you should take it period...regardless of if you are growing a 10lb distraction in your belly. 

Anyway, a before and after so you can see just how fab we all could look.

NovaLash Before and After

Her certification class was in St. Louis, so I went along for the shopping and to be her "model."  There were only 2 requirements for models....
#1.  Must not be pregnant
#2.  Must not weigh over 200lbs. 
I met neither...but I do have eyes, so apparently that trumps the rest.  I just told Maggie that if the table gave way below me, I would be leaving with haste, even if I only had half my lashes done.  
(Apparently my humility can wait until I hit that 50% complete mark.)

After a few hours "on the table" I was lashed to the nines and we started our trip home.  I must admit, I love my lashes.  It was a bit of a surprise to me.  I thought I wouldn't be that  into it, but, like I said, I was looking better right out of bed and I figure it has got to be at least a moderate help when some bastard, I mean, loved one, takes a haggard post-delivery picture of me.  

But now back to the convoluted point of this tale.  

As you have read before on my blog, I hate bugs.  Hate is not a strong word. It is simply truth in this situation.  You cannot blame me.  Some awful things have happened in this little trailer due to bugs. 

I am fairly certain that when you are 3 bites into your Life cereal and you realize you've also having a side of ants, you would jump right on my bandwagon and bring your biggest drum with you.  
That or nearly gag and throw it away like I did.  Three times....(you think I'd learn to check the cereal...)  Zac and I also struggled to get rid of roaches.  They were a gift passed on to us by a filthy neighbor.  I have never been more disgusted with my living situation as when those bugs found their way onto MY counter tops and one found his way into Zac's ear in the middle of the night.  
You draw a line in the sand pretty fast when that happens.  

As I have now fully illustrated, bugs are disgusting.  I hate them.  I have reason.
And now, to bring the 2 wildly different topics together.....

The other day I was sitting reading a book.  I was happy, loving life, drinking my iced water....up until the point when I realized their was a leg in my glass.  A FREAKING LEG!  I immediately flash back to my bowl of ants and dump the glass in the sink disgusted that there may be an infestation in the works again.  I was more that a little grossed out, and definitely a little sad (as I don't have an ice maker and that was the last of the ice....).  I could see the whole bug issue starting up again.   The bleach cleaner and the boric acid and the exterminator and the cussing....

Later on that evening I took my shower and got ready for bed.  I was leaned over brushing my teeth when low and behold I find another bug leg.  AHHHH! 
Then the realization hits....that is not a bug leg you idiot.  That is one of your temporary eyelash simply lost it after you washed your face.  

Crisis averted.
I was thrilled...then doubly sad about throwing out my infested drink earlier in the day.
As my mother's daughter, I never underestimate the value of an icy beverage.
 "Bug legs" be damned.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Thursday "off"

After the drywall was finished in the office, I was all over the next few steps in the process.  Like I readily admit...I am impatient and would work from dusk til dawn to get the office done.  Luckily I have people more reasonable that I that reel me in a bit.  Plus my cliffbelly slows me down and, as much as I hate to admit it, makes me occasionally stop and rest.  Unfortunately, resting makes me anxious and leaves me with plenty of time to form an agenda for the next day.  

Thursday was no exception.  
Thursday is Zac's day off.  This means, Thursday is Zac's day to work for someone other than Best Buy, namely Dad, or me.  Last Thursday, he was all mine.  Mom also made the mistake of volunteering, not realizing that she would be worked until she lost interest in helping and her back hurt.  
I can promise you work friends, I can't promise you will not regret the offer to help...

Zac and I showed up first and I was fully agend-ized.  We had a plan.  
Zac would work on putting up the base shoe under the trim while I painted the desk area, so that the wall caps would be done and I could paint them while he installed countertops for the front desk.  
After painting, was cleaning, mopping floors and hopefully steam cleaning.  

This is Zac, fulfilling the plan and base shoe-ing like a pro.  

While he did that, this nook was my domain.  I have no pictures of the process...but we all know what painting looks like.  

In keeping with the plan, Zac and I switched areas, and mom and I painted the trim like pros.
(That's professional painters mind you, not pro like prostitute...though I imagine some prostitutes are skilled painters...and it makes me curious as to how much difference their would be in the hourly rates of the two professions, as well as the difference in dress code for painting....anyway....)  

After painting Mom and I moved around the absurd amount of tools that are hanging around the office. As you can imagine, we mostly just moved them from one pile, into another, and cleaned around them.

By the time the trim had 3 coats of paint, the front desk had two, we had rearranged the tools, and mopped the entire office twice, Zac had the countertops all set.  

He had also installed the top boards that cap the front desk...and caught me trying to take sneaky pictures of him at work.

I can't help it...I think he is cute. 

With our leftover paint, which seemed to never end, we trimmed underneath the wall caps.  We figured that would help to speed up the wall painting process at least minimally.  

By the end of the day, my front desk area, was looking like a front desk.

The office was starting to take on a whole new look.

And Mom had assumed the position. 

Fortunately, when you work for me until your back hurts, I can do something about it.

After Thursday's accomplishments I was on top of the world.  Then I realized, we had a TON of painting to do.  I talked to Mom and quickly realized I needed a crew.  Maggie had offered to help on Saturday, so I knew she was in.  I put up post on Facebook and managed to guilt or bribe help out of my cousin Ellen and my Aunt Jackie as well.  When it comes to that combination of ladies, I knew work would get done...and there was a very real possibility that someone was going to pee their pants laughing.  The best part is that it was not necessarily going to be my weak bladder that gave out first.
Stay tuned for Saturday's escapades.   

Tuesday, August 21, 2012


In case you have been wondering, "what happened to Abbie?  she was posting so regularly..."  fear not, I am still here.  The last 2 weeks have been a blur of office remodeling and late pregnancy waddling.  I've been repeatedly attempting to work Clifford out of my uterus, to no avail.  I have however, accomplished a lot...

You all got a look at demo day at my office.  (You also got a feel for just how hormonal I've been...but that's neither here nor there.)  I rallied the troops a week later to start the construction part of the office re-do.  The brothers showed up and so did Uncle Doug.  The men each had their own projects.  Zac set to work on the front desk. 

Isn't he a cute builder?  And yes, he is wearing his bandana, so you know it's on.  

As he worked on the front desk, the other men installed the stubby support walls and the wall that divides my big spaces into adjusting bays.  

As the walls went up, Kylie cut and hung drywall.

Once the walls were up, we made them even more sturdy by capping them with big thick boards.  

Uncle Doug had his "precision focus' on, as you can see by his moderate scowl. 

Construction is serious business.  
These are men with plans I tell ya.  
You sometimes need to stop, confer with your co-builders, and make sure you have at least as many drills as men on the job. 

By early afternoon, the office was looking how it has looked in my mind for months. 

Jade and Dad set to mudding the new drywall.

I was thrilled. 

My office is looking so office-y.  

And my front desk area was all laid out.  
Everything was going great until Dad got the call that cows were out and my crew left quick, fast, and in a hurry.  Luckily no speeding tickets were issued on the flying trip home, the cattle were quickly wrangled, and Zac got to stay behind with me to clean up a bit.  

Over the next couple of evenings Zac, Dad, and I made it back to the office to sand and mud.  On Wednesday we finished everything with knock-down texture.  

In exactly 10 days we managed to finish all the major construction and drywalling for my office.  Words can't even explain how thrilled I am....or how filthy the office was.  Really, drywall dust is unbelievable in it's ability to infiltrate every nook and cranny in a place and make every tiny nose hair look like a creepy spiderweb living in your face.  Enjoy that visual.... 

All the progress set the agenda for the next few days, which will be coming up in the next few posts.  
I am so happy with the way the office coming along.  I swear, I am the luckiest girl to have the family that I have.  As impatient and ramy as I am, it is a blessing that I can always count on them to show up and whip out exactly what I need in short order.  I know one thing for sure, I love my crew!

And you will all be happy to know, since Dad is the boss whenever he is on the scene, no questions asked,  I didn't have to have any estrogen-fueled rage fits at Zac as I tried to impose my will upon him. With nary an f-bomb dropped, Zac and I worked in harmony :)

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