Sep 30, 2014



Last Thursday, Henry and I were on the bus on our way home from a little shopping trip, when I felt that familiar feeling of hot, stomach discomfort, and...yep. I got sick on the bus. Not pretty. I got off as quickly as possible and made the long walk home, too smelly and embarrassed to get back on another bus.

The next day I was on my 4th trip to the bathroom, and I realized that I was actually sick or something, so I called my midwife and she asked me to come to the hospital to be rehydrated. I was very dehydrated when I got there, it had been over 24 hours since I'd been able to keep any food or drink in me and I was woozy and grumpy and worried. Luckily, a good friend came through for us and came over to watch Henry while Mark and I sat in the waiting room until I was finally admitted, then finally given some IV fluids. I felt better nearly immediately, but the doctor wanted me to stay overnight for monitoring. They also thought I had a virus so they wanted to keep me isolated to keep the infection at bay - which I didn't really understand fully until after I left the next day, but looking back everyone who entered my room was wearing gloves and a mask. I was too out of it to realize that's not standard protocol.

I held firm to my belief that this was just a pregnancy thing and I had a sensitive stomach. I felt pretty fine most of Saturday in the hospital, and when they let me go home Saturday evening, I thought I'd be back to my normal self. Fast forward to 6 of the stomach bug. I must have had something pretty nasty because I'm finally just today starting to feel like myself again. I just ate my first food that wasn't white bread or pears or soup since Friday. I'm starting to feel like getting back to nesting, and I even considered taking Henry to the playground today (considered. instead I took a nap while he played a game on my iphone. parenting!).

I realized during these strange past 6 days how little my world is here, and how difficult it can be for someone in poor health. Mark has been doing absolutely everything, including grocery runs 3 times a day to satisfy my recovery stomach/pregnancy cravings. And I'll tell you - being 34 weeks pregnant with a 4 pound baby inside of you and hardly eating anything at all puts you in a MOOD. But now with a fridge fully stocked with broth, ginger ale, applesauce, and yogurt I'm ready to start feeling normal again - whatever that may be. And I'm feeling grateful for the support of friends we have when family is so far away.

Realizing we are less than 40 days until the due date is the only thing getting me through these long days. I forgot how truly uncomfortable and exhausting this last bit of pregnancy can be, especially after getting socked with a stomach bug, and it's a really nice thing it ends with a tiny little baby to cuddle.

Sep 23, 2014

I've never been here

A couple days ago, we hit our year mark of living here in London. I can't believe how much has happened and both how much shorter and longer it has felt! Does that even make sense? When I look back on our DC home and our routines there, my full time job, etc. it feels like a million years away, but it also feels like we just got off the plane on that grey London day in September 2013.

Anyway, we are settling into our second official flat here in London. I can't believe we moved again, but moreso, I wish that we would have been smarter the first time around. I loved living in Highgate but we were hoping for baby #2, and it was just too small and far away from city life for my taste. But we did get a good dose of quasi suburban life, and it was nice to be away from chaos after our last neighborhood in DC which was, as I've been describing it lately, "crime-y".

So far in this week of living in West Kensington, I've been to so many new places I would've never gone before, just because it's an awkward trip from Highgate. To name a few, Brook Green is lovely, our little neighborhood is just charming, and we're just a quick bus ride away from Kensington High street, Kensington Palace and the amazing Princess Diana memorial playground. And let's talk about the grocery stores. They are HUGE down here. We had just a tiny little Sainsburys by our place in Highgate, and I didn't think there was such a thing as large grocery stores in London. But the Waitrose, Tesco, and Whole Foods have blown my mind and meal planning just got so much easier.

We have lovely big windows and high ceilings that let in so much light, and even though it's an old flat, it is (mostly) charming and I'm happy to be here. Just need to find an IKEA wardrobe for the bedroom and then we're pretty set up.

We have our first appointment today at the new hospital, and seeing as how I'm nearly 34 weeks pregnant, I'm going to feel much better knowing we are settled and close to a great hospital with a comfortable and private birth center. Maybe that will make the fact that we're having a baby seem more real. (Living in denial currently.) We still need to find somewhere for the baby to sleep, some diapers, and a few soft receiving blankets to snuggle her, and then hopefully I can feel some peace of mind.

Photos of the flat to come, once it's not a total disaster!

Sep 3, 2014

Goodbye to Summer.

So long, Summer. Those 6 weeks of warm, perfect sunny days were bliss. Splash parks, pools, sandboxes, evening picnics in the park overlooking the city. We lived it up.

I had planned our beach trip for the warmest month - August - but sadly the wild British weather had other plans and a hurricane off the coast in mid-August sent us straight into Autumn. It was on average 60 degrees the whole weekend, the sun peaked out from time to time, but we still had a beautiful trip seeing the southwest coast of England, looking out into the ocean during the day and at night, and just slowing down for a few days.

On the way out to the coast, we made a sort of out of the way stopover through Cheddar Gorge to see these amazing cliffs and stop for lunch. Henry collected some rocks and loved watching the people climbing up the side of the cliffs.

A walk through the cool town of Penzance, and down to the harbor to see all the colorful boats.

Lands End - the most southerly point in the UK.

Looking for the moon and stars.

Kynance Cove was so gorgeous! Also, so cold! We walked down to the beach and joined the throngs of British people who had prepared for the weather with thermoses of hot tea, wooly jumpers, tents, umbrellas, and bikinis for the sunny weather.

Henry's beach VW van. He kept seeing VW vans driving around with boats and surfboards on top, so when he saw this little toy, he HAD to have it. ;)

St. Michaels Mount was beautiful (and closing up right when we got there so we didn't get to see the inside) and we enjoyed the walk out through the causeway during low tide.

On the way home, we were driving close to Stonehenge, so we decided to swing by and see it. It was so impressive, and the grey clouds and wind helped to set the mood.

Henry's face here says it all! He was pretty cold and over it at this point.

We had a great trip, as what was our last little weekender as a family of three!