Tuesday, January 20, 2015

27 Weeks

Gender: Girl 

Weight gain: Not sure at this point, I will update this weekend after I go to our apt. (slightly terrified haha)
Update: I weighed myself on a scale at school: 60 kgs or 132.2 lbs, so I've gained about 16 lbs so far. 

Maternity clothes: Yep, still living in leggings as you can see (there is nothing else comfortable to wear in the cooler weather).

Stretch marks: Nada

Belly button in or out: Outtie

Sleep: Still waking up at least once a night around 1-2 and up for about an hour watching TV shows or surfing the web. I've been SO tired lately, I think this pregnancy is catching up with me. I've been falling asleep sitting up in bed!

Best moment this week: Cuddling with Sawyer before bedtime, he's been such a little momma's boy lately. It's so cute when he wants to lift up my shirt to see my belly. I keep telling him that there's a baby sleeping in momma's tummy and he gives my belly a kiss everyday, so sweet. 

Worst moment this week: Chasing around Sawyer Friday & Saturday (Kurt was gone for a basketball tournament) and he just wore me out... oh you know, just eating the dog's medicine, trying to drink my precious latte and spilling it all over himself and splashing over the walls, and not sleeping well on top of being sick... he saved all the fun for this momma. Luckily, bad days are just temporary.

Miss anything: Fitting comfortably through tight spaces, my back not hurting, and not getting out of breath so darn easily!

Movement: Rosalie has been quite the party animal lately. I also keep feeling huge shifts and movements, I'm wondering if she's turned head down yet...

Cravings: Chocolate, apples with nutella/peanut butter, oatmeal, and cereal...someone please ship me some Golden Grahams! ;)

Queasy or sick: Still not a big fan of red meat, unless it's bacon... 

Looking forward to: Heading to Taipei next weekend for a conference. Kurt and Sawyer are coming along too! 

Story of my life last weekend (except I didn't get to finish my latte)

Sunday, January 4, 2015

Christmas in Bali Part 3: Lovina & Ubud

Thank you so much for your sweet words and support after my last post about our Christmas in Bali. I started this blog to share about our life overseas for our friends and family back home. That means sharing the good and also the not so good parts that comes with living abroad...just trying to keep it real friends! ;) 

After spending 6 nights in Amed, we were off to Lovina for a couple of nights. Everything in Lovina was extremely cheap. I enjoyed two massages (about 8 USD for an hour) at our hotel while Sawyer napped. We found delicious restaurants, enjoyed strolling around, and went dolphin watching one morning. It was the perfect amount of time before heading south to Ubud.

My future's so bright, I gotta wear shades.

For the last part of our trip we headed to Ubud. Unfortunately, this is when we left most of our clothes behind in Lovina. We called the hotel and our clothes mysteriously "disappeared." Kurt lost his favorite shirt and shorts, I lost a lot of my maternity clothes and favorite leggings, and Sawyer lost a lot of his PJs and summer clothes... at least we were left with some underwear ;) 

Our new home stay in Ubud had charm, but I had a major asthma attack from our dusty room and we decided we there was no way we could stay more than two nights. We booked a new hotel nearby. I'm so glad we did. It was in a great location, super clean, and Sawyer enjoyed playing in the "yard" outside our front porch. We didn't do too much in Ubud...but that was ok with me! 

Walk home from dinner

Sawyer and one of his many admirers. The Balinese were beyond child-friendly and genuinely sweet. Sawyer made friends at every restaurant we visited. The staff would play with him, hold him, chase him, etc. This is one of the perks of living in Asia vs. America :) 

Pineapple Fried rice with prawn chips (delicious)

Dinner at a restaurant mentioned in Eat, Pray, Love with my dad and Michelle...and Sawyer's Buddha belly.

Photo outside our little bungalow in Ubud (notice the offerings on our porch)

Friday, January 2, 2015

Christmas in Bali Part 2: The Truth

I decided that I needed to write this post after our Christmas tree literally came crashing down in our living room this afternoon. Ornaments shattered in hundreds of pieces on our floor. I was heartbroken. I collect ornaments from friends, family, and from our travels. They're really sentimental to me and now a quarter of them were in pieces on our floor, irreplaceable.  Our tree falling over was the icing on the cake after Christmas this year.

  I feel like I need to write this post because I usually post all of the amazing and happy things about living abroad, but it's not always butterflies and rainbows. I want to post the hard stuff too, the truth. 

Christmas this year was extremely hard. Living overseas has many positives that usually outweigh the negatives. When the holidays roll around, I feel lonely and homesick. If you know anything about me, I absolutely LOVE everything Christmas. For me, it's the "magic" of the holiday, listening to Christmas music, baking cookies, the smell of the pine tree in the air, traditions that have been made since I was very little year after year with my family. 

Moving overseas changed everything. The first year living abroad, we were in Thailand with Kurt's parents. I remember Skyping my family and afterward, I was a crying mess. I kept telling myself, "I am in Thailand, what do I have to complain about?! Snap out of it!"

The second year, we were in Cambodia with Kurt's parents. I was pregnant with Sawyer and again, I Skyped my family, this time to announce the big pregnancy news. Same story different year, I'm a bawling mess afterward.

Last year, we went back to Wisconsin for Christmas and also flew to Canada after for my dad's wedding (all in about two weeks). It was honestly a whirl- wind and pretty crazy. Sawyer was only five months old and he was jet lagged and we were jet lagged. Our thoughts were something along the lines of, "What were we thinking coming back for Christmas?!? We are insane. We are NEVER doing this again!"

Fast forward to this year. We put our tree up the second week of November since I knew we'd be traveling to Bali early the next month. I wanted to make Christmas magical for Sawyer. I wanted to create traditions like I had growing up. I baked cookies, we listened to Christmas music, I put Sawyer in Christmas footie PJs. I even wore my reindeer antlers and Christmas sweater to school and helped plan a staff holiday potluck.

Then, I blinked and it was Christmas...in Bali. Except, it didn't feel like Christmas. My grandma had just passed away, we were at a new hotel that was giving me an asthma attack from all of the dust, and we had lost over half of our clothes (we left them at the previous hotel). I was crabby. There was no tree, no presents, no snow, no magic. To make matters worse, the internet was so slow it was pratically unusable, so that meant no Skyping my family. Here I am in Bali, on Christmas and my family is thousands of miles away, without me. I scroll through Instagram and Facebook (by the way...worst idea ever when you're feeling homesick) and I am jealous. I am jealous of everyone surrounded by their big families, Christmas trees, presents, and food. I cried, and then I cried again. I hate feeling lonely on Christmas. I shouldn't feel lonely, I mean I have Kurt and Sawyer. My dad and his wife were in Bali and we were also with our best friends. But I still couldn't help but feel lonely. Our Christmas day was an ordinary day. We ended up having a nice, low-key dinner with our friends, so our day ended on a positive note. 

Christmas Bali style

Lennon and Sawyer munching on Christmas corn

Only family picture I took on Christmas

I am slowly discovering that we need to find a happy balance of creating our own special traditions as a small family unit, when we can't go back to the states and also keep traditions that are important to me, even if that means shelling out $$$ to travel back to Wisconsin during Christmas time and enduring jet lag. Side note: Kurt grew up overseas, so traveling during the holidays with his parents is/was a totally normal Christmas tradition for him :)
Before we know it, Sawyer is going to grow up right before our eyes and so will Rosalie. I want them to experience holidays with extended family, even if it is a bit chaotic. I want them to see houses decorated with colorful lights, bake cookies for Santa, feel snow crunch beneath their feet, smell a REAL pine tree, and wake up super early on Christmas morning to see what Santa left under the tree. It's important to me that they have those memories too in addition to all of the amazing travel memories.

 Here's to hoping that next year's Christmas will be the best Christmas yet...as a family of four (crazy!)

Thursday, January 1, 2015

Christmas in Bali Part 1: Amed

We were in Bali for 17 nights over our winter break. We stayed in three different cities while we were there: Amed, Lovina, and Ubud. 

For the first part of our trip, we went to the northern part of the island to a small town, Amed. This was hands down my favorite part of our trip. We rented a villa with our friends. There were 3 separate houses with bathrooms, an outdoor living room, a pool, and kitchen. It was so relaxing and easy for families with little ones since we could choose to have our meals cooked at the villa (no meltdowns at restaurants, hooray!) I would go back in a heartbeat. 

My dad and his wife, Michelle ended up joining us in Amed since they were staying at a nearby island where they were scuba diving. We basically did a lot of lounging, pool time, eating, kayaking, snorkeling, and reading while we were here.

Our trip to Bali was also a bit tough on me because I found out that my grandma was very sick in the hospital. She ended up passing away a week before Christmas while we were in Amed. It is definitely hard to lose a loved one while living abroad, knowing that I couldn't be there for my family (especially my mom) or attend the funeral. My grandma was a feisty and extremely giving woman. Her grandchildren were the apple of her eye, and I am so heartbroken that she was never able to meet Sawyer (or baby Rosalie). I miss her already, but was able to talk to her briefly from Bali via Skype with a bad internet connection before she passed. 

Here are a few pictures from Amed. You'll notice we didn't really leave the villa much... but who would want to leave such a beautiful place?

Our outdoor shower. I loved taking a shower at night because I could see all of the stars in the sky... beyond beautiful! 

We decided to go on a kayak ride before Sawyer's nap.  He passed out about 10 minutes into the ride. We saw a lot of fish and coral reef.

View from our "yoga tower"

Snorkeling during Sawyer's nap time. 

24 Weeks

Gender: Girl 

Weight gain: I forgot what it was at my last apt. After our vacation and many desserts in Bali, I'm afraid to find out! ;) 

Maternity clothes: Yep, but so sad after we left some of our clothes behind at a hotel in Bali and when we called they had disappeared. So many of my maternity clothes were left behind and they aren't so easy to get in China. I'm going to try to see if I can get by the next three months without having to buy many more! 

Stretch marks: Still in the clear! 

Belly button in or out: Outtie

Sleep: It's been a bit better since being back in China in our own bed. I'm still waking up at least once a night to pee or to cuddle Sawyer (he's been teething) but otherwise, fine!

Best moment this week: Spending the whole day as a family in PJs and doing a whole lot of nothing on New Years day. How are we always exhausted after vacation?!

Worst moment this week: I was extremely allergic to one of our hotel rooms which made my asthma terrible in Bali. Luckily, we switched hotels after two nights, but I hate not being able to breathe! 
Miss anything: Fitting into my regular clothes and watermelon mojitos (they had great delicious ones in Ubud, and I was sad I had to miss out on the happy hour).

Movement: Yep, she's a busy little lady.

Cravings: All sweets, fruit juices/shakes, pasta lately, Mexican...okay a lot of food! 

Queasy or sick: Not sick, but I have not wanted red meat at all this pregnancy, no desire. With Sawyer, that's all I wanted! 

Looking forward to: Celebrating Kurt's 27th birthday in a couple of days and lounging our last few days of break :)