The Adventures of Zach + Zoe: Part 20

They may be in for a little surprise when they realize that neither of these things are set up for their enjoyment…

[Photo taken January 22, 2018.]

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Baby G2, Coming Soon!

Well, 39 weeks along seems like a good time to make a comeback and do a blog post about Baby Boy Glatfelter #2, haha. I guess when I talk about pregnancy and life in general on The Broadcast every week, it seems redundant to tell the stories again here. Perhaps if I moved some of those stories over here once in a while, our episodes would be much shorter, hahaha.

Anyways, here we are, at 39 weeks and 2 days. My due date is February 4, and I am ready. This pregnancy has been really different than when I was pregnant with Zachary. Yes, I’m a lot more tired, but I can deal with that. It’s the higher level of physical discomfort this time around that I wasn’t prepared for at all. Starting at around 16 or 18 weeks, I had a lot of round ligament pain in my right side and it actually sidelined me a few times because I couldn’t stand up from it. That progressed into back pain, so I bought a brace in October that really did help a lot. Sometime in mid-December, I started really having simultaneous pain and numbness in my stomach and noticed that there was a hole above my belly button. My ob-gyn confirmed that I have diastasis recti, which means my abs have split apart. It’s common, often heals within a few months of birth and is treatable with physical therapy.

But anyways, if a little bit of stomach pain is the most that I can complain about, then I recognize that I’m being a big old baby that needs to shut up because I’m lucky that’s all I have to deal with.

We’re almost done with his room. We’ve kept it fairly lowkey because the room has a wall of built-ins already as well as a wood wainscot on the other three walls. We are using Zach’s old crib and bought an IKEA dresser, a bookshelf from Amazon, and a La-Z-Boy chair. We also got a storage ottoman from Target that has toys in it. I found a lovely “We love you more” sign at Buy Buy Baby that we’re putting up on the wall. We ended up getting a La-Z-Boy because we’re anticipating long nights for the next couple of years and wanted to spend them comfortably and have something that we can use in another room once those long nights are over.

Just a tip for anyone who is looking for a La-Z-Boy: We ended up with LAB because we saw the store by us was having a factory clearance sale. The saleswoman mentioned that they price-matched, so after we ordered it, I went home and found the same chair for muuuuch cheaper on Wayfair. Jay called them the next day and not only did they match the price, but they also gave an additional 10% off of the difference. The only thing we had to pay was the delivery fee (it was free shipping on Wayfair). But for someone else to assemble it for us, it was well worth the delivery fee, haha.

Zach is doing awesome with adjusting to the idea of having a baby brother. So far, he has had no behavior issues or anxiety regarding the pending change of life as he knows it. Potty training has finally moved in a positive direction and Zach has expressed a desire to teach his baby brother how to poop on the potty, haha.  We have been honest with him: that things will change and we’ll be someone else’s mommy and daddy too and that the baby will be living with us forever, not just for a little while. I think gently telling him early and reinforcing it with actions like having him talk to the baby about the things he’ll do with us when he comes out have helped. Or, maybe I just a really well-adjusted 3-year-old. Or maybe all hell will break loose a month from now when the novelty wears off, lol. I don’t think the latter will happen, though (beyond what is normal). He’s very loving to my tummy and often falls asleep hugging it or with his hand on it. He says good morning and good night and gives it kisses. This baby is super chill in the womb and does not move a whole lot, but without fail, he moves whenever Zach is touching or even just talking to him. It’s really cool and maybe I’m looking into things too deeply, but my motherly instincts can see a bond between the two of them already. I love it. <3

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The Adventures of Zach & Zoe: Part 19

They…play together? I turned around to get something out of the refrigerator and when I looked back, this was how they greeted me. Zoe is still not a huge fan of Zachary, but she’s a very good sport.

[Photo taken August 28, 2017.]

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Eclipse!

As pretty much anyone with a pulse knows, today was a total solar eclipse in North America. We were not in the path of totality, but we were pretty close to it at 93% here in Raleigh, NC and luckily, Jay picked us up some eclipse glasses from Lowes back in early July (not even kidding; we had ours before we even left for Comic-Con in mid-July). High five, Jay!

I had to work today, but was fortunate enough to be able to leave my office for most of the “good” parts of the eclipse. Jay and I were going to meet at the RDU Airport Observation Deck, but Jay realized late-morning that we’d have a great view of the sun from our driveway and back deck, so we changed plans at the last minute.  Jay made a fun little setup with a table, chairs, and umbrellas. The action in the Raleigh area began at about 1:15 p.m. I got home around 1:30ish and settled in for the action.  As you can see, Jay and I have very different methods of sitting out in the sun in general:

So, the eclipse began around 1:15 p.m. and we maxed out at 93% coverage at the 2:43-2:45 p.m. mark. It was really, really neat. I only waited for a little over an hour, it passed by really quickly – and I wasn’t really even playing on my phone during this time. Thank YOU for the natural entertainment, Mother Nature. As we approached maximum coverage, we heard the crickets start chirping like it was dusk and although the temperature on my watch never dipped more than 10 degrees over a 2-hour timespan, it did start to feel cooler once around 50-60% of the sun was covered. The other really neat thing was the way the light changed. It never got dark, but it was this odd lighting like we were outside at dusk but sitting under flood lights. Does that make sense? I left to go back to work a little bit after 3 p.m., and while I was driving back, it was eerie in that the daylight looked like it was very early morning – that still, calm, “new” light effect.

As we approached maximum coverage, we heard the crickets start chirping like it was dusk and although the temperature on my watch never dipped more than 10 degrees over a 2-hour timespan, it did start to feel cooler once around 50-60% of the sun was covered. The other really neat thing was the way the light changed. It never got dark, but it was this odd lighting like we were outside at dusk but sitting under flood lights. Does that make sense? I left to go back to work a little bit after 3 p.m., and while I was driving back, it was eerie in that the daylight looked like it was very early morning – that still, calm, “new” light effect.

I had a great time watching it. It really was such a cool phenomenon to get to witness, and I’m so happy that 1) I was able to go home and view it comfortably and 2) the weather cooperated and we didn’t have many clouds. We decided to leave Zachary in school for it because he’s adverse to wearing any kind of eyewear and in that threenager phase where he would never have cooperated anyway or even “got” what was happening.

Anyways, it took a bit trial and error and advice from a friend, but I was able to get a few decent pictures of the eclipse by holding my iPhone about an inch away from the glasses and then turning the screen brightness all of the way down. I’ve loved scrolling through Facebook and Instagram today, seeing everyone’s pictures. Here are my pictures with time stamps. Enjoy!

1:40 p.m.

2:12 p.m.

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Dolly + Miley + Pentatonix = My Favorite Jolene

I am obsessed with this version of Dolly Parton’s “Jolene.” This is Dolly, Miley Cyrus, and Pentatonix performing an acapella version of “Jolene” on The Voice the other night.

When we first started dating back in 2007, Jay and I used to debate whose cover of this song was better. He always insisted that the White Stripes’ version (Jolene [Live]) was the best, while I was always partial to Mindy Smith’s version (Jolene (Bonus Track)) because it was the first cover that I’d heard of it. (I’ve since changed my vote to the version that Miley did for her Backyard Sessions in 2012.) After watching this video about 29 times last night, it has become my new favorite version. If you like this one, you should also check out the single that Pentatonix released with Dolly Parton back in September (Jolene or video below the jump). Okay, I’m gonna stop now before this becomes Jolene overkill. Enjoy!

What’s your favorite version of Jolene?

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But Seriously.

Well, here we are again. This is probably the third or fourth time in the last two years that I have done a mea culpa for disappearing and then come back, vowing to blog on the regular again. Yet, here I am. This time, it’s going to be different, dammit! I’m going to blog at least 3 times a week, Internet-distractions be damned!

But seriously.

Life has been all over the place since my last blog post. There’s been a bunch of bad and then worse, but I think – I hope – that as 2016 ends, I am a stronger person than I was when 2016 started. I don’t know if I’m unscathed, but within those challenges came a lot of good. I’ve done some serious soul searching over the last five or six months in order to figure out who I am and who I want to be. But hey, everyone goes through shit, so I’m not going to get into any of that now. Plus, why give away all of the goods on the first blog post back? 😉

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So, back on Halloween, I was suckered into one of those Groupon deals for this “Antique Leather Brown Notebook” from Monogramhub (above). I didn’t really read the fine print or the reviews, haha. I just saw that it was a notebook for $5 + shipping, so I figured I’d get it and use it for my next Broadcast-ideas notebook. Well, shame on me, because when it arrived, it was definitely much smaller than I thought it was! It’s not a total waste, though. I am a person who is great with checklists, so I decided to use it to make a list of blog post ideas and hold myself accountable to this “more than once every six months” pattern I’ve been on lately. I’m even working on a post about the Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life episodes on Netflix, stay tuned for that coming up soon!

So on that note, I hope everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving. We stayed in Raleigh this year and had a fun time at my in-laws’ house. Zachary was sick with a fever from Monday, Nov. 21 through Saturday, Nov. 26, so it was a pretty lowkey weekend/weekend in general for us. We spent a few hours at one of the only Urgent Cares that was open in the area on Thanksgiving morning because we were worried that Zach had strep. “Luckily,” it ended up just being tonsillitis. Given our track record (two sets of tubes and adenoid removal), I should open up a betting pool on how long it will take until he has to get his tonsils out, haha.

Ooookay, moving on to something more positive! On Saturday evening, Jay and I went to dinner and to see Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them. I thought it was really fun and totally recommend it to any Harry Potter fans out there. Eddie Redmayne is adorable, end of story.  I didn’t see the twist coming, but to be fair, I was enjoying a beer during the movie, haha, so I was just there to sit back, relax, and enjoy a few hours away from a sick preschooler. But anyway, I want to get the screenplay of it. I saw it at Barnes and Noble last week. If anyone has it, please let me know how it is! And if you saw Fantastic Beasts, let’s talk about it in the comments below!

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The Broadcast!

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I’m doing a new podcast! It’s called “The Broadcast” and my cohosts are my old roommate from Astoria, Amanda, and my cohost on The Tribe, Shandy. If you have iTunes, you can subscribe here: https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/the-broadcast/id1128235491?mt=2 or if you use the Podcasts App on your iPhone, you can put our feed into your Safari browser and it will bring it up: http://jayandjack.com/category/broadcast/feed/. If you want to search for “The Broadcast” in another podcatcher app, just look for our logo and please consider subscribing and leaving us a nice 5-star review on iTunes. That is the thing that will help us get featured on iTunes (subscribing and reviews). Thank you!

So how did The Broadcast come about? The idea started a few years ago when Amanda and I were reminiscing about the MetroBuzz days and how much fun we had doing the Rooftop Sessions episodes. The Rooftop Sessions were special MetroBuzz episodes we recorded outside on the little roof of our apartment in summer 2007 and 2008. We generally recorded them when we had guests over, and the four of us (Me, John, Amanda, and the guest) would shoot the shit for 1.5-2 hours. I have such fond memories of that time period, and I’ve always wanted to try to recapture the magic when the time was right. Amanda has always floated the idea of us doing a podcast, but the timing was never right. Now that life has quieted down a little bit, I thought maybe the time was right. I didn’t want to do another TV-based podcast and have always loved Jay and Jack’s podcast, “The Married Man Show,” so I thought maybe we could do something with a loose format that was feedback-driven. Something where we could chat about our perspectives on life while being simultaneously silly and serious.

So, I texted Amanda at the beginning of May to ask her if podcasting was still feasible for her schedule, and she said yes. Bringing Shandy on board was pretty much a no-brainer; if I want to do a podcast filled with funny, intelligent women, then Shandy and Amanda were my girls. I floated the idea in the Jay and Jack Patrons-only Facebook group, and someone suggested calling it “The Broadcast.” I loved the name. Amanda and Shandy loved the name. And thus, the Broadcast was born.

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Zachary Lou Turns Two

zachary-2nd-birthday-candles

So, Zachary turned two on June 13! I can’t believe I have a two-year-old. It feels like both yesterday and forever ago that he was born. I cannot believe how much he has grown over the last two years. He can play with trains and trucks masterfully. You can talk and explain something to him and he will listen, retain it, and recall it weeks later. Although you can’t always make out what he is saying, he tries to speak in sentences to tell you what he wants, what he’s seeing, or what he’s done. He started in the EPS1 (early preschool) room at school last month, and my weekly BabyCenter emails just changed from “Your Toddler…” to “Your Preschooler…” It’s just incredible.

We threw him a small birthday party on Saturday, June 11 with family and friends. My parents, sister, grandma, and aunt came from Long Island, which was awesome. Jay’s parents, sister, and brother-in-law came over, as did several of our friends. It was a great day. Because June in the South is like living in a sauna, we took everyone down to our neighborhood pool to chill before coming back to our house for hotdogs, hamburgers, grilled chicken, etc. Zach got a lot of great presents, many of which are spread out all over our floor as I type this, lol. His favorite gifts are two big trucks, a dump truck and a backhoe, that Jay picked out for us to give him. He also got an awesome Thomas the Train tricycle from his GiGi and Papa (Jay’s parents) that he scoots along in all over the house because he’s a shorty (13 percentile for height, baby!) and his feet don’t quite reach the peddles yet, lol. On Wednesday, he started a program called Soccer Shots at school, courtesy of his Grandma and Grandpa (my parents if you hadn’t done the process of elimination yet lol), and came home talking about the “soccer ball.” All in all, the kid made out pretty well on the gift front.

Zachary-thomas-tricycle

Riding his new tricycle

My favorite part of the party was having all of our friends and family here to hang out and have a good time. I love throwing parties and watching everyone have a good time. It makes me happy.

On Zach’s actual birthday, my sister Katelyn and I took him to see the “big trucks” aka the construction of new homes in the neighborhood adjacent to ours. He was in awe watching the real-life truck in action. After we dropped Kate off at the airport, we stayed at the little airport observation deck/children’s park to watch the planes take off. Watching the airplanes in action was another highlight for him. That evening, Jay and I took him to Kanki, a local hibachi restaurant. It’s so funny how little he cares about the “fun” stuff there, like the volcano. His reaction to the fire? “Meh, where’s the food?” hahaha, this kid. Anyways, it was a really great birthday, and I’m so thankful to have had two wonderful years with my little baby boy, my Lil Smoops. Love my little family. 🙂

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Looking at the big trucks.

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Airplane observation deck at RDU.

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Watching the airplanes take off at RDU.

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Family birthday picture at Kanki!

 

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Obligatory 6-16-16 Post

Aaahhhh I missed some of the earlier ones this year, but not this one! I have two other posts that I have been working on, so I don’t have anything specifically to talk about in this one. But, what better time than to share a picture of this awesome dress that my coworkers and I are slightly in awe of?

champagne-wedding-dress

I mean, it’s got to be super heavy, but that dress is hilarious.

ANYWAYS, I am doing a new podcast! It’s called “The Broadcast” and my cohosts are my old roommate from Astoria, Amanda, and my cohost on The Tribe, Shandy. I will have more on that within the next day or so.

Next up in random, here is an awesome video of some dude named Richie Moriarty doing 14 different celebrity impressions while singing the opening song to “Hamilton.”

There isn’t very much else going on right now. Jay has a toy show this weekend, which is always fun for me and Zach to go to. Jay and I have been doing Blue Apron, so I will have a post about that soon, too. Thankfully, the rest of June is going to be quiet. Hope everyone else is doing well!

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Two!

 

zach-2ndbirthday-dinner

They say in the darkest night,
there’s a light beyond

Happy Birthday to our little Zachary Louis, who I truly believe was sent to us two years ago today, June 13, to replace loss and sorrow with a constant source of life and joy. It is impossible to be sad when he’s around, and every year, he will continue to bring happiness and healing to his entire family. Thank you, Lord, for giving us the amazing son, grandson, nephew, and friend that you knew that we needed.

Zach-2ndbirthdayparty-family

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