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Friday, December 18, 2009

Books on babies.. have you read?

I am interested in seeing if other people have read any of these books and what they think. I have only read one parenting book so far, but I have looked online for short articles here and there. I think its best to go with what feels right for you, but getting some guidance isn't a bad thing either. The first three are more about signals babies send, and the second three are more about how to "train" the baby.

1. What Babies Say Before They Can Talk : The Nine Signals Infants Use to Express Their Feelings

2. The Secret Language of Babies: The Body Language of Little Bodies
This one I could not find much about, but it seems to be the most interesting one.

3. Dunstan Baby Language -- Learn the universal language of newborn babies

4. The No-Cry Sleep Solution: Gentle Ways to Help Your Baby Sleep Through the Night

5. The Happiest Baby on the Block: The New Way to Calm Crying and Help Your Newborn Baby Sleep Longer

6. On Becoming Babywise

The last one I have checked out and started to read. I already have on opinion. But I will wait to see what other have to say. If you haven't read them look up reviews and tell me what you think! Leave a link of its a good one. If you have any thoughts or tips to share please do! About sleeping, feeding or whatever.

ps: I couldnt get the fonts to all be the same... not sure why. sorry about the yelling.

Monday, December 14, 2009

Go Army BEAT Navy!! Maybe next year..

This was Roman's first Army Navy game. Although this is the 8th year in a row Navy Beat Army, we still had a good night and we still went into the game hoping. Good thing we can also clam TCU as our team. *I don't really get into football that much, but I still love TCU, no matter if they win or loose - I am just happy they are good at winning. Here are some pictures and videos (no sound because its broke) from the night.


Roman is not celebrating an Army Touch Down.
Believe it or not.. he is just dancing to the music. See video below.

Tony had to buy him an Army T.. its very large and will fit
him for few games to come. Its a 2T.

Can you find him?

Cute right?!

Roman can go to any college he wants to.
Its just fun to dress him up.


video

Quick update.. Roman I believe has grown an inch or so.. I tried to measure him and got around/over 22 inches. He was born 21 and 1/4. I wanted to weigh him on our scale and found out its low battery. A few days this past week he has been slept for almost 2 hours in his swing! Okay.. he didnt sleep the entire time, but on and off and he was content. He would open his eyes and then go back to sleep. It is nice to be able to move around without him, when he is not screaming or not holding him. Not that I don't love to hold him! He has also had over 6 hours of sleep a few nights, but I have NO IDEA why!? I would love a repeat though. His "old man" hair is still there, but he is starting to grow some peach fuzz on top. It's so soft and I like to rub his head now. He also smiles and "talks" to us often. He especially likes to talk to me when I change his diaper downstairs. He likes it downstairs because I use a warm washcloth but upstairs we use baby wipes and they are not warm. We will sit in the bathroom "talking" for a long time during the day.

Sunday, December 6, 2009

1 Month OLD!

Roman in his bear outfit - notice his ears
his arms were stuck up like that
Pics with Mom and Dad


He has so many cute outfits


I know its silly.. only to remember how tiny his feet are

Cute little butt - Legs are filling out too

Roman is growing so fast. We knew it would happen, but it truly is going by so fast. Its a few days past the big day of one month. He has done so many things this past month besides entering the world. He has already been on his first overnight trip, his umbilical cord fell off, we started to use cloth diapers. He can wear 3-6 month clothes because he is SOOOOOOOO LONG (he will still fit into the others, but they fit better even if the feet are big on him), he rolls over, he doesn't like his car seat that much and cries most of the time in it, We got a bouncer that he likes, still working on getting him to like the swing. He likes to listen to music and dance around, or be bounced around by Tony. He also likes to listen to the hair dryer in the bathroom to calm him down - my mom taught us about this trick. HE LOVES BATH- until it gets too cold. He also now likes the baby ergo carrier. Tony even carried him in it last night. Its a great carrier and will last us till he is a toddler too. He has hung out with just him and daddy too already and they both do great. I started to pump to allow me to be gone and to allow Tony time alone with him to bond. He went with me to a candle party too and he got to meet another baby who is just a week younger then him. They played nice (asleep and all). Then he pooped all over himself in front of everyone and I had to change him out of his dirty clothes. It was a mess.

He has been rolling over since the first week we brought him home. I think it has something to do with his long body. I thought it was a fluke at first, but he has done it many more times, although we are working on doing it on que. He does it best when angry. One day he actually was so calm that, not only did he not roll over, he put himself to sleep!!! That was a first. Most of the time he falls asleep only in my arms after eating and wont stay asleep unless I leave him there. OR Tony moves him. Last night he slept 7 hours in a row, Tony put him down and told him to sleep a long time. Went to bed at 11 then didn't wake up till almost 6 am!! We both woke up at 5 am and Tony asked me what time he had woke up and when I realized he hadn't and it was past 5 I had to check to see if he was still breathing. He usually went maybe 4 hours the first part of the night, then would wake every 1 to 3 hours to eat again. So tonight we cross our fingers but dont hold our breath that he makes it just as long again.

I leave you with a video of my smiling baby

video

Monday, November 30, 2009

Army time coming to a close

Tony just got info that leads us to believe we will start clearing (getting out of) the Army in Mid March. MIDDLE OF MARCH. That is only THREE AND A HALF months away.. LESS THEN FOUR. Oh, my army time has gone fast. ha. That means we should be back in the states by April. Who knows where we wil live. Wow. That is just crazy.

I can't believe we have been married going 3 years and we have a baby now. Our little boy turns 4 weeks old tomorrow. My how much things change in a year. Last year at this time I was still in Japan and Tony had just visted me in Tokyo for Thanksgiving. We look forward 2010, but before the new year comes in a few short weeks we have more family and friends to see. We have to get shopping for the holidays! I started to put things on the tree today! Only got 3 ornaments on before Tony got home. Roman did not allow me much time away from him today.

I leave you with Photos of Roman and Jiffy the Giraffe. Tony must name all stuffed animals.



Saturday, November 28, 2009

Thanksgiving

I love Thanksgiving. Maybe its because I love food so much. Thanksgiving isn't Thanksgiving without something to be thankful for right? I am Thankful for my healthy baby boy, my loving husband, my wonderful family and friends AND the freedom I have to live my life the way I choose. SO HAPPY LATE Thanksgiving! :)

Sunday, November 22, 2009

3 weeks old






Roman turned 3 weeks old on Tuesday! I can't believe it. Four weeks ago you were in my tummy and my mom was here telling you to come out every chance she got. I was fine waiting till you were ready. And you were ready on November 3rd.

The time we have spent with you so far has been full of learning and fun. Of course its also been spent changing dirty diapers, getting peed and pooped on, trying to get you to stop crying and not sleeping too. You are so interesting for being so young. You make so many different sounds. We have started to name some of them. One which you make most often in your car seat is the Dieing cat sound or as mommy calls it the "dead cat" to which Daddy pointed out that if the cat were dead it would make no sound. Still it's horrible and I like to say the one I made up. The other which is sooo cute is your little squeaky sound. Its one you make when you are just waking up or trying to get our attention, but your not as pissed off as the dead cat.

We have started to call you a few names too. Daddy calls you Romy sometimes. Which is funny because mommy wanted to call you that too and when she thought of it when we first picked your name she didn't want to tell Daddy about Romy because she was afraid he would ban that nick name. Turns out he likes it. (I do think of Romy and Michelle's High School Reunion) He also calls you stinky. I DO NOT APPROVE of that name. Daddy smells like crazy. I swear he took my pregnant nose. He can smell when you pee! Also your vitamins that we give you smell too. Then of course there is the spit up too. I don't think your poopy diapers smell that bad, but Dad can smell those too. I also call you Peanut and Pea. For some reason Tony doesn't like peanut. You are not a tiny baby though you are completely in the middle. Your not huge and your not small. Your perfect. You are gaining weight fast. You had to go to the doctor on your 3 week birthday. You had some green goop coming out of your eye and lucky us we made an appointment that day. Then it went away by the time we got there. Turns out your little tear ducts could be causing the problem. So we will just keep an eye on them.

You have already spent your first night in a hotel. You did pretty good. You slept in your stroller bassinet. Its been great for you to sleep in. We have taken many pictures and look forward to all the memories we have yet to make.

We Love You Roman
Your Mommy

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Birth Story

Introducing The Corona Family

The Sunrise the morning he was born (Taken by Tony)
The very first picture I took of him - many more to come

In the mother baby unit - sleeping after his meal

Tony holding Roman soon after birth - still purple
I gave birth over a week ago now. On November 3rd at 2:24 at Landstuhl Hospital in Germany to be exact. He was 21 1/4 inches long and he weighed 3.740 Kilograms = 8.23 pounds. This is my story about the day our first little boy came into the world.

I woke up at midnight that morning to pee then tried to go back to sleep only to wake up again at 12:30 and thought I had to go again. I guess Roman decided to start coming then. What I felt must have been his head according to the nurse that made me think I had to go to the restroom. Soon after that also started to have mild *painless contractions that were about 5 minutes apart. So I called the hospital soon after to make sure I was ok. Then soon after that I started to have REAL contractions. They hurt bad. I knew they were real and I had no doubt, but they were only 7 minutes apart. So I called again. Nurse Sheilds (who also happens to be a west point parent and know Tonys mom via email) answered again and told me that I could come in if I wanted to but she was pretty sure that if they weren't 5 minutes apart that if I was past 2 or 3 cm dilated she would be surprised. Especially since I was a first time mom. Sooo I decided to wait, since I didnt want to drive 20 minutes one way just to have to walk around the hospital for 2 hours while my body showed actual signs of progressing to labor. If it got too bad I was just supposed to call to tell them we were on the way.

During the waiting I called a few people. Who got to sit there while I had a contraction that I could not talk during every 5 minutes. I actually have the record of the times... I am going to post them for my own benefit so that I can look back. Tony came down stairs I think somewhere before the "started to get bad" phase during my second phone call to labor and delivery. I told him to go back to bed.

Contractions
1 19
1 24
1 29
1 35
1 38
1 43
1 51 or here..
1 55 Started to get bad
2 02
2 11
2 20
2 27
2 35
2 43
2 50
2 55 -5
3 02 -7
3 07 -5
3 12 -5
3 17 -5

I decided to wake my mom and Tony soon after this last one. Even with that random 7 minute one in there I just hurt too bad and felt like it was long enough at home. I didn't want to deliver on the bathroom floor. First I woke my mom, then I went upstairs and woke Tony and lay in bed for another few while he got ready. Oh, did they hurt. I was just fine in between them but it was amazing how I just couldnt move or do anything during one. My mom describes contractions like a really bad charlie horse that you get in your leg only its worse. I knew that once I got to the hospital I could not eat anything but clear stuff because they fear that during labor women will throw up. It was hard to have a contraction in the car. I had I think 4 on that 20 minute ride in the dark and drizzle to the hospital. Then one on the way in to labor and delivery by the elevator. So we get checked in around 5 am and I get into my beautiful backless gown to get checked.

Guess what I was already dilated to 5 cm! Nurse Sheilds was shocked. She said I had bragging rights. So I will repeat that over and over. She asked me if I was ready for or if I planned to get any pain medication. I told her I wanted to wait as long as I could for my epidural because I heard that it can make labor longer. She said I was already past a point and on my way so now was a good time. Can I tell you how little my epidural hurt! Oh my gosh I swear it was nothing. I did start to shake uncontrollably right before the epidural. I guess it was all the adrenaline running threw me. So she cleaned me all up and placed the tub in my back. Genius. They checked for the numbness to kick in with a wet cotton ball on my leg and stomach. That felt odd! I didn't know I would be able to move around my and feel most of my legs. The lady who gave me my IV hurt me 10 times worse then the epidural. The first attempt I had a blown vein; which is still bruised a week later might I add. I have no idea if that means it was my veins fault or hers.. but I do NOT like being stuck with needles.. I don't like seeing them or anything about them, so I will blame her. She put it in my upper arm and I asked her to cover it because I could see too much of it. I am guessing I was the first to ask that because she seemed confused as to why I would need that. We killed time by playing games and I tried to rest, but even without feeling the contractions anymore I was too excited to sleep.

5 hours later at around 10 am they came in to check me again. I had felt much more pressure for a while and when she checked she said she had good news. I was already to 10. The Dr came in to break my water and after they did she said my cervix was in the way. So They let me sit there for another hour almost two before we started to push. The beginning stages of pushing was so easy. They said I was pushing wrong so they brought in the nurse anesthetist to turn down my epidural. Then I learned about a button to push incase of too much "pain"/pressure. That was nice to know about later. I think they turned it off towards the end I swear I could feel way too much... but I guess I will not know unless I go with no epidural at all and I just dont see the point of that right now.

Tony was great the whole time. He was there by my side with the nurse helping me breath and push. He was the best coach and husband I could ask for. When I started to freak out and cry telling the dr I wanted Roman out right now he kept telling me how close I was. I guess I was close for a while because the Dr. kept coming in and leaving. BUT when she did come in she would have me turn to my other side or back talking about how I was doing better before. That upset me more times then not. Another thing that upset me was when she had me touch his head. If you are grossed out.. then don't read this part. I would have thought by the "pressure" and all the "good jobs" "Your almost there" that I would have felt a softball size BUT.. I swear I felt maybe an egg. I was sooo upset that made me cry too. Tony had to calm me down once again. I didnt want to touch his head but she asked for my hand and before I knew it it was done. When we got even closer the Dr. asked if I wanted to feel and before I said no the nurse made sure she knew that upset me last time. My mom was in and out of the room giving us time alone but she was there for the birth. She filmed and took pictures for us. I am very thankful that she was able to come over and be here for such a special time in our lives.

Another funny part I didnt mention is that I started to push around 11:30 or so and we were watching TV at the time. We had it on AFN Prime, the only channel I get at home, so I know the schedule by heart. At 1:00 young and the restless comes on and its over at 2:00. SO when I was still pushing when the "Next time on the Young and the Restless" came from the TV I was thinking its been over almost two hours already! Then the stupid soaps came on and I stopped paying attention to the TV. BUT I swear she told me during Y & R how close I was multiple times. The Dr. came in soon after it was over and then she said it was time and the Dr got all her gear on. She had a mask with a face shield. It was serious stuff. When I pushed the last time and he came out I had wanted to have him skin to skin but he wasn't making enough noise and she said the cord was around his neck so he went to the warmer. I was so upset that he was not on my chest I started saying how I wanted him on me as fast as possible. (There is lots of info saying how this helps the baby adjust to life outside the womb, and they are calmer and breast feed better then babies who are not skin to skin for an hour or more) He stayed with me on my chest as soon after they got him breathing ok and made sure everything was good. I think they wanted to put his eye stuff on and some other things but I insisted they wait. I was told by my midwife and also the lactation consultant that this was perfectly fine for him and that those things could wait. I am sure they just want to get their job done so they can move on. There are more details of course. Maybe I will post those later. I got to hold him and he was perfect. It was wonderful and I told him I was sorry for not wanting to push anymore. Then he kept me company while I was stitched up. I did force Tony to take off his shirt after they took him away from me and I have no memory of what they did to me, but I wanted him to have the Skin to Skin contact too. Thanks for going along with that honey. I love you.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Due date reached

Tony and I the weekend before due date

My mom and I the same day.
Mom is excited to meet her first Grandchild

So I am due today. No signs of labor yet. SO I am guessing he will be late. Mom wants me to go for a walk. Maybe that will do it and I will be in labor later today. BUT I don't feel like it at all. I still feel great. I thought the end was supposed to be the worst part and I you would do anything to get the baby out. I am perfectly comfortable being pregnant. I am sure that means that the labor will be horrible.. or my next pregnancy wont be so nice. Either way I am thankful to have been so lucky this time around.

OH! We had a pizza from a vendor right behind us and he gave us our pizza for free and he touched my tummy when he brought it out and wished us luck then when we left he ran out and Kissed my stomach! He was a cute Italian and he seemed to have a crush on Tony. lol. Not really but he was very happy for us and the fact that the baby was a boy. That was the first time I had a stranger touch my stomach, but its ok he asked and I don't mind at all. I didn't even mind when he kissed it either. It makes for a funny story.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Pregnancy in week 39

Me Tuesday, October, 20 2009 with Amanda my
midwife who just did a sonogram for my mom

So I am 38 plus 4. Its early here but it still counts as a new day to me since I have already gone to bed and woke up. I am sure I will crash hard tonight. Maybe even sleep ALL night long!? Ok so I have a secret. If you go by the days I have been counting down to its actually Halloween. It makes me feel better just to add that extra day on. According to my chart at the hospital its 38 plus 3 today (October 21). Why would I do this? Because at our first appointment when Roman was only 9 weeks old she said it looked like he was one day ahead of schedule. Then at our next sonogram appointment around 17 weeks she said he looked maybe a week ahead, but they dont change the date unless its 2 weeks ahead. Which I still dont understand.. because the say they get your date is to get the date of your last period and add 2 weeks to that. Soooooo if you minus two weeks from that first estimated due date... it just doesn't make sense to me. OK so I wanted to update the internet on pregnancy since my last post. Just fill in on the random things I have experienced since being pregnant.

So stretch marks suck. They make me feel gross and fat. Blah. OK So I put on lotion but I wasnt daily about it. I have decided to make myself feel better that some people get them and some people dont and that I COULD NOT have prevented them. So there. Thats how I am going to deal with it. Maybe they will fade. I only have a few so I will live and I hear you can laser them away.

My ankles are no longer. I have cankles. Not only are they ugly and gross. They hurt! I feel very vain when I say that if I always had them I might have to look into surgery to fix them. Hate me now. Its ok. I would most likely never want to spend money on something so stupid. My feet do go down at night but they swell up at the end of the day and walking on them they feel just giant. I can still wear my croc boots, but I did just get a pair of slip on house shoes with rubber bottoms that I did wear out yesterday. They are cute.. Maybe I will post a pic of them. They dont look like "house shoes" they look like felt slip on shoes. So its ok. I promise. I do have my slip on crocs, but every time I want to wear them all I can think is "why in the world did I let the shoe guys talk me into turquoise crocs, I should have got tan or black?!?!" Because when I look down that's all i see is TURQUOISE!

My belly button is still not sticking out. Its flat and that is almost just as creepy, but its just not a huge flag to the world like the sticking out belly button is.

Sleeping has its good days and bad. Last night I woke up a few times so I would say it was a bad night, more so because its almost 5:45am and I have been up for over an hour now. When you do wake up you either are in pain because you have to change positions or you have to pee. Then if you have to pee you notice, oh I hurt. It hurts to try to sit up and get out of bed. It takes much effort to get our of bed. More so because I have a pillow between my legs that I have to remove and make sure I place it where I can find it in the dark when I return. I have also started to sleep with two little pillows under my feet to help with swelling. I think its helped a lot. So I sleep on my side with a pillow between my legs and under my feet and one for my head. That's just 4 pillows the most pillows I have ever slept with in my life. I am usually a one pillow person. All these pillows are just crazy.

I don't think I experienced any crazy food cravings. The only thing I thought of was a beer float, but I didn't get to try that. The other thing that I didn't create myself was this dip I found at the bazaar on Ramstein last month. OK get ready for this. I didn't even want to try it either but I love samples.. so I had to. It was a garlic and honey dip! I KNOW! Sounds gross.. BUT they sell it so it means that other people buy it and I highly doubt that all those other people are pregnant. It was 49% honey and 51% garlic. Or the other way around.. one had that little bit more. I just sampled it on a piece of bread and it was so good. I should have bought it.. but I also have this tendency to think "I can make that" when I see something like that. Food and craft things apply to this.

I have received so many clothes/gifts for Roman. Thank you if you sent some! Tony had a co worker who had twin boys who are 3 months old I think.. and she gave me a ton of new born things! I think he has more newborn clothes then he does 0 - 3 month clothes. I have washed and put away all the newborn to 3 month clothes. I figure I can start washing the other months maybe next month or January. Its more by weight then the months (as you might know already) so I will just have to see how fast he grows and how big he is when he is born.

I have to also mention that my wonderful Cousin Buffy (AKA Jennifer to the rest of the world) sent out invites to our side of the family and had a over the mail shower for me as a surprise. It was so sweet and she even sent me the cute invite to save. She made me a cute onsie with the state of Texas on it and a coordinating burb cloth that she embellished too. Her mom made him two nice sized blankets. Her sisters (my cousins) got me some things from my registry. Another Aunt who has 3 daughters and 2 daughters in law all sent me a bunch of things in a box too ranging from bath duck toy that tells you if the water is too hot to books and cloths. My mom sent him a bunch of things too. A few cute outfits and some socks and other goodies.

My mother in law had a skype shower a few Sundays ago too! She had the Corona Dallas family members over to hold up gifts to show to Tony and I. They also gave Tony his own diaper bag with some funny things for him. Like ponchos and rubber gloves and nose plugs.. a Bio Hazard bag. Silly things like that. My mom brought over all the loot on Monday and we have unpacked it already and its put away in its place. They went all out on the gifts too. So many cute things. I have pics posted on facebook from the two "showers".

I also have to thank my friends who have sent things just because. Thanks so much. It means so much that you would go above and beyond to help us welcome our first baby into the world. Its very different being so far away so it really does mean the world to me. :) I love you all.

OOH he is always in my side. We joke that he is trying to get out. Its like he gets a running start and sticks in my side. Only its his feet.. since he is upside down. Which creeps me out btw. Why is it ok for the baby to be UPSIDE DOWN for so long?! Feel free to tell me.

I think I covered the things I wanted to talk about. Have a super week!

Monday, October 12, 2009

Peace Man

There are so many opinions about the recent announcement of President Barack Obama as the 2009 Nobel Peace Prize Laureate. I decided to look into who received it in the past and why. Because the only people I can think of are Al Gore and Mother Teresa.

In case you didn't know the committee who votes is composed of 5 individuals who try to make a unanimous vote for the person/organization, although this is not always possible. There are also a few people who never were given the prestigious prize that might be just as controversial as some who have. Search here. One such as Mahatma Gandhi who was nominated 12 times between 1937 and 1948. There is a very long article as to possibly why he was never a Laureate. Six have declined the a Nobel Prize- some were forced to reject it and others choose to. Only one to reject the Peace Prize. Hitler was nominated for a Peace Prize but his nom was taken back on the deadline of the same year.

There is a press release on the site stating why he was the recipient. Here is a link to the entire release. This is the beginning of the release about the Obama and the reason the committee is awarding him"..for his extraordinary efforts to strengthen international diplomacy and cooperation between peoples. The Committee has attached special importance to Obama's vision of and work for a world without nuclear weapons....For 108 years, the Norwegian Nobel Committee has sought to stimulate precisely that international policy and those attitudes for which Obama is now the world's leading spokesman."

I tried to find exactly what reasons a person should be nominated for the prize and this is what I found in Nobel's will he stated the Nobel Peace Prize should be awarded "to the person who shall have done the most or the best work for fraternity between nations, for the abolition or reduction of standing armies and for the holding and promotion of peace congresses". I also found the following quote on Wikipedia. "Unlike the other Nobel Prizes, which recognize completed scientific or literary accomplishment, the Nobel Peace Prize may be awarded to persons or organizations that are in the process of resolving a conflict or creating peace." The council has released a statement about why they believe he should be the recipient so young in his presidency saying "the Committee wanted to demonstrate its support for the approaches he is taking towards global problems".

I visited the Nobelprize.org website and it's great. Listed is each recipient since 1901 (for all the prizes) and a search engine for the people who were nominated too! Can you guess who was nominated but didn't win? Go check it out here! The list is only released 50 years after the year in question. Alfred Nobel is the namesake of the prize and this is what the site has to say about him. "Since 1901, the Nobel Prize has been honoring men and women from all corners of the globe for outstanding achievements in physics, chemistry, medicine, literature, and for work in peace. The foundations for the prize were laid in 1895 when Alfred Nobel wrote his last will, leaving much of his wealth to the establishment of the Nobel Prize.... Meet Alfred Nobel - scientist, inventor, entrepreneur, author and pacifist. " Doesn't he sound great?

There is a process for awarding the Prize of course. Here is the long version on the website. To sum up - the person must be nominated by Feb from an eligible nominator. Thousands of eligible nominators are sent a letter in September and their letters of nominees must be post marked no later then Feb 1st. This date is only 11 days after Obama took office. I wonder how many people nominated him. This past year of 2009, 205 nominations were made for individuals/organizations for the Peace Prize. This is the most ever! The last record was in 1995 and was 199 people/organizations. As I stated earlier those names will not be released for another 50 years. Of course they receive many many letters, but many of those are duplicates, I also wonder who else was nominated this year. I will be in my 70's when the list is released.

OK now all those were just facts.. I wasn't putting anything I thought into it.. now in my personal opinion I think its a great thing that the world is looking at America in a positive way. We were not too long ago viewed very negatively in the eyes of the world. In Obama's very short time as the President of the United States he has brought the American people back into the light. I think he did that even before he took the oath. THAT is a big deal. Even if you don't think he should have been awarded its not a reason to direct negative energy towards him. He did not nominate himself, that's not how it works. I am sure he would much rather not be mentally defending himself because he was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize and he hasn't "done" anything. He should be able to be happy about this award. I think its very sad that the American people can't even let their President be happy for receiving such an honor. I do think its a good thing that he was so humble about being this years Laureate, but I cant really see him being any other way. Why all the fuss? Not everyone is Mother Teresa.

Take a look at the 90 recipients.. you might not even know who a most are. In 1973 during the Vietnam conflict Henry Kissinger, a German born who was serving as the US secretary of State and Le Duc Tho, the two chief negotiators who succeeded in arranging the ceasefire after negotiating for nearly four years. Le Duc Tho declined to accept the award, stating that there was still no peace in his country. Kissinger is criticized and even accused of war crimes for the policies he promoted during the Vietnam war and for his role in the establishment of dictatorial regimes in Latin America. The award to the Dalai Lama in 1989 was not considered as a friendly act by the Chinese government. There is an entire article dedicated to the controversy that the prize has caused.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Things I will miss

My time abroad is only getting shorter as the days go by. I am of course looking more and more forward to being back in the states. That much closer to friends and family. There are many things I will miss about being here in Germany. I thought I would try to make a list because some of these things I might forget about later.

The Drives - The autobahn has some beautiful paths. There are no large billboards to block your view or distract you from the road. Its just the passing villages and trees and hills. So beautiful.

The SUMMER daylight- The summers are great because its light out till around 10pm at the latest! However you might have guessed, the winters here are very dark and depressing.

Christmas markets - The Christmas markets here are soo great!!!! I missed them all last year because I was in Asia working and didn't get back till right before Christmas. They serve a hot spiced red and sometimes white wine that they also put more alcohol in. It is best with amaretto I think.

Fests - The fests here more like a fair then i ever realized before I got here. I thought it was just drinking. Turns out its more like a family affair then I ever knew. There are rides and tons of food along with all the beer! PLUS the beer tents.. they are not really tents. They are real buildings! They go up and come down just for the events!

Indoor pools - They have tons of pools around here! I know in Texas there are pools too, but the giant pools here have tons of slides and they also have the outdoor part too for the nice summers. So in the winter when its cold, you can still go swimming!

Low flow water toilets - Ok I know this might be silly to some of you, but when I went back to the states and used a toilet for the first time I didnt want to flush all that water!!!! OH gosh.. the water that is wasted, it hurts.

Recycling options - Of course I will miss this! I can recycle anything! My trash never fills up.. I think I could go months without taking the trash out because nothing gets put in there! Just used Kleenex and gum.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

B-I-N-G-O

I also played Bingo last week! I know.. crazy. You have to buy two cards to play and the prizes when I went were coach bags and wallets. I won twice!! BUT the second time my win wasn't counted because the lady calling numbers didn't really call out all the numbers and I missed one but when someone else called I only was missing one so I looked at the board and turned out I had it! By the time I got up there she had already dropped the balls and couldn't count mine. The first prize I won was this wallet. I think it was the least cool thing that we played for. I still think its cool I won, but I feel bad because I am sure someone else would have LOVED THIS!.. here is a link to the print.. Mine is a wallet. I do like the inside. Its pretty. :)

Besides feeling guilty for not loving my prize, I think it was pretty fun! I didn't know that the same numbers were in the letter columns. Also that the pattern you have to get changes! Its not just a line. We played where you had to black our your card, get a "kite", four corners, clumps of 6 and 9, and a few more patterns I had no idea BINGO had. It was fun too. They change the bags they use I think, but it was still fun. When i won for the second time walking up these guys behind me said "Whats with all the pregnant women winning?" As if that has something to do with it!

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

I played Bunco

Last night I went to a Bunco Party. It was my first one.. I feel way too grown up now. I don't think that being pregnant made me feel as grown up as going to a Bunco Party did. IT was fun!

This morning I was up at 5 am and awake like I had slept for days. Today I have planned to go to the pool. I am looking forward to feeling weightless. Hope its as good as its supposed to be.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Videos from Belgium

video


video video

Carol's Daughter


I found this new product at the KMC Mall that I never knew about. Its called Carol's Daughter. They have a lovely website too here. She started working out of her home 15 years ago making natural and organic beauty products. Her mom encouraged her to sell at a local flea market. Then she had a mail order sometime after that then lead to the opening of her own store and now she is sold in stores such as Macy's and Sephora. Thought I would just let people know about it. They have tons of products for body and hair too! I love my Shea Souffle. :) Check them out.

Friday, September 25, 2009

Tony turned 27!

So the trip happened to fall on a holiday weekend that was right before Tony's Birthday so we did celebrate his bday all weekend. BUT we also went to Macaroni Grill at the KMC Mall on the actual day. I also made him a cookie cake that we were too full to eat when we came back, so he got some the next day. It was pretty good if I do say so.
 
We had a great meal and Tony got sung to and this nice chocolate cake.. I am sure he wished they sent out the cheese cake instead. Maybe we could have finished that. :)


Silly Tony before we cut the cake

I think he had a good day. LOVE YOU BABE! Last birthday before he becomes a dad!

Brussels!!!!!!


We spent the morning in Brugges going to a chocolate museum and climbing the stairs in the Bell tower then drove to Brussels a short distance away. First we went to Mini Europe then to the atom and on to our hotel to rest then out to eat!

The Atom that we went inside.


Head of the EU building.. we found the real one of this the next day!
 

 The square in Brussels that we would see later!
 

View of the park from inside the Atom
 
 
View of our tickets and out the window in the escalator 
 

Our names are on the TV!

 Our pretty Hotel room!
 
 Much prettier then the one in Brugges


This is the square we saw in mini! They were having a beer fest that we just missed buying coupons for!


Look at all the different kinds of beer.
 
A list of the beers that were sold
 



Right before we got here some woman had just flashed everyone.. glad we missed that!


Tony got a beer here right across from the Manneken Pis with the same name for the bar

Yumm my pizza was great! We decided to have a fast cheaper meal here. It was good minus the drunk homeless man who kept going by us. I don't think I have ever been scared of a drunk homeless person like this man. Even the other guys he was trying to hang out with didn't want him near them. I think he threw someones beer at them too.

Lucky we had eaten already because these restaurants all looked great! This street reminded me of Paris. I think Brugges was very German looking, but Brussels seems to think they are Parisian. They even speak French.


The next day we walked around some and then drove to Waterloo.

This lion was scared..

 Bad Lion!
 
Doesn't this just make you smile?

 Walking around. Miles of walking



The US embassy. They were closed since it was a  holiday... so we didn't get to go in. The one time we decided to go to the embassy we cant go in. 

Its Waterloo!


Look at all those stairs..

The Battle Site



The giant panorama painting with sound to make it real..

Its a SUNSET, look the sun is going down!!!! We don't see these often..