a few things

1. I check the work room at my job for free food every day. Apparently we've had free food enough times that it's become second nature for me. Today there was cake (!!!) and I was so happy. 

2. Today, I went to an actual doctor appointment for the first time since November. Every other appointment since then has been for a required ultra sound or a trip to the hospital because "way to go, body!". I sort of have this vendetta against the medical world, so I've been happily avoiding the obgyn. Does anyone else get so annoyed when you go to the doctor and you pay 30 bucks to be told literally everything you read on google before you got there? I HATE THAT SO MUCH. 

3. Last weekend, the oven took a bite out of my hand, resulting in a disgusting and super painful burn. Then it broke open of course, so now it's this gashy, scabby (ACK such a gross word!) mess on the side of my hand. In the last few days, 4 people have been all "Whhhaaaat happened to your hand?!". At first it made me feel good... like people were concerned about my poor baby hand. Now I just feel like they're grossed out, and asking is their attempt at veiling disgust. 
BRB, I'm wearing gloves for the rest of the week. 

4. I had an INTENSE sequence of dreams last night about alligators. If you are curious about alligator butchering, I'm your girl, thanks to the crazy red head lady who taught me all about it in said dream (need a visual? Think Sigourney Weaver in Ghostbusters). Pregnancy dreams are weird, man.

5. Last night Christian gave me the foot rub to end all foot rubs. In my humble opinion, this should be a requirement for all husbands. It's sort of gross, but so sweet and tender at the same time am I right?

6. Baby boy has a new favorite activity called "dance on your mom's bladder for 30 minutes a day, bonus points if you do it in the middle of the night when it's especially full". It is the strangest and most uncomfortable feeling, and it's probably only a matter of time before I pee my pants, courtesy of baby. I guess I should start buying diapers for the both of us. 

The end.


a cup that runneth over

“Anyone who imagines that bliss is normal is going to waste a lot of time running around shouting that he’s been robbed. The fact is that most putts don’t drop, most beef is tough, most children grow up to just be people, most successful marriages require a high degree of mutual toleration, most jobs are more often dull than otherwise. Life is like an old time rail journey…delays…sidetracks, smoke, dust, cinders and jolts, interspersed only occasionally by beautiful vistas and thrilling burst of speed. The trick is to thank the Lord for letting you have the ride.”  - Gordon B. Hinckely


I've mentioned this before, but much of the last year felt just like that old time rail journey. It was delays and sidetracks, lots of smoke and plenty of dust and fiery cinders that burned and burned, and just all around BLAH. It really kicked my teeth in. We had plenty of moments that were sweet and beautiful, but most of the time I found myself teetering on the brink of being unhappy, and just trudging along because things were just plain ol' rough. 

This year started looking like it would feel much the same. When we lost our housing because our landlady decided to move, I was mad for weeks. I felt completely jipped because we had been working so hard and "why did things have to fall apart right as another semester was starting?!"

Fast forward a few months and I'm just beyond grateful for that little "derailing". It's truly been the biggest blessing for Christian and I in so many ways. It's hard living with family again, because we are really ready to just take off and do our own thing and not be tied to anyone because of our living circumstances. I guess Heavenly Father has been very aware of those desires (isn't He always?!), because this weekend we found a place to live come April, and we are absolutely thrilled about it. Then this morning, Christian got news that he was offered an internship at Goldman Sachs this summer, which has basically been his dream for the last year and a half. This internship will mean security, almost guarantee a job after graduation, and guess what else: The freedom to take off and do our own thing as the little Carter family, just like we've been wanting ever since we got married. I have been so overwhelmed by the "beautiful vista" and "thrilling bursts of speed" we've been feeling the last few days, and I'm doing my best to soak it all in and just revel in the happiness. President Hinckely was right when he said that much of life is hard. And even though we've been feeling elated and blessed the last few days, things will certainly start to feel hard again soon. 
(anytime! I'm ready for whatever you want to throw at me, life!)

But right now, I want pour out my soul in deep gratitude, and enjoy the proverbial vistas I feel completely surrounded by. The blessing of a place to live. A good job. A great education. Beautiful weather that just makes my heart sing. A sweet baby boy preparing to join our family. Wonderful friends and family who love us. A darling husband. Health. Happiness. 

Because in the end, the trick really is to thank the Lord for letting us have the ride, despite the dust that can so easily cloud our ability to see the breathtaking beauty behind it all.


a third trimester update

Things are obviously boring around here guys. The 3 pregnancy related pictures on this page are proof of that! Poor Christian has mono and has been sick for over 2 weeks now (I KNOW), so we are taking things easy these days. Watching Sherlock, doing homework, sleeping a lot... you know. Real exciting stuff. 
I hit a milestone this week though!
We are in the home stretch people! 

How far along? 28 weeks.

Weight gain: Guys, I honestly haven't been to the doctor in forrreevvveerr. Based on the way my body feels though, I'm guessing I'm about 7ish lbs up from my pre-pregnancy weight, which is actually a gain of about 15 lbs because of the vomit-inducing weight loss during the first trimester.

Sleep: I've been waking up a lot more lately, but I attribute that to being sensitive to my sick husband's tossing and turning all night.... poor guy. Still having crazy dreams though!

Best moment of the week: This hasn't been one specific moment, but sometimes little man moves so vigorously that it feels like HE is pulling me around instead of the other way. I think we've got some fun and busy years ahead of us! ;)

Weird pregnancy moment: I haven't had too many of these lately! I guess it's kind of weird to me when people find out I'm 7 months along and comment on how I still look pretty small. I mean, I'm certainly not huge, but I definitely feel very pregnant ha.

Movement: This baby gets the hiccups 2-5 times a day, which is super funny and cute to feel. He's also very fond of flailing every limb at the same time, which I feel in literally every part of my abdomen at one time. It's so strange and sweet and fun, all at once!

Cravings: Thankfully my cravings are still pretty mild. I've been loving cold cereal a lot more than normal lately (but who doesn't love the stuff, am i right?), and I've also been wanting to eat hamburgers like every day. Don't know if that can be attributed to pregnancy though!

Anything making you queasy? Slightly... which disturbs me a bit. If that nausea comes back for this last trimester, I don't know what I'm going to do! 
(Eat a lot of orange chicken, probably)

Gender? Well, a boy. Obviously.

What I'm looking forward to: I'm actually getting really excited about the birth. Not so much for the actual BIRTH, but getting it over with. If I think about it too much, it freaks me out. Can't I just hold my cute little guy without having to squeeze him out of my body first?! I'm also weirdly excited to get a stroller. We've been slow to purchase some of those big ticket items (re: we haven't purchased any of them yet!), and it will be fun to acquire some of that stuff... and even better when there's a little human to use it all! 


this guy

In honor of the holiday this week, and his birthday next week, I'd like to dedicate this post to my Valentine. 
Warning: serious cheese ahead!

One of my favorite pictures of Christian. Seriously stop it with the sexiness right now.

Man, words can't even begin to cover all the things I love and appreciate about Christian. I feel like my marriage to him has been the biggest gift ever (it probably has!), because I've been able to grown and learn from one of the best people I've ever known! Let me tell you about him:

- Christian is smart. So so smart you guys, like seriously. Like, he read a Stephen Hawking book over Christmas break for FUN. His version of browsing the internet actually means reading Wikipedia, and then he can remember literally everything he reads! This is something I love so much about him. 

- Christian is a talented athlete. He swam all through high school, he's a super great runner, and he's got a ton of speed and power on a bike. He gives my water polo-playing brothers a run for their money any time they are together ha! This is one reason why I love going to the gym so much... it's fun to be there with him!

- Christian is a BIG sweetheart. He tells me every day that he loves me. He also talks to our little guy through my stomach all the time, and it kills me. I know that not everyone gets to hear or feel expressions of love every day, and it makes me feel very lucky that Christian does that for me. I need to be better about that!

- Christian is literally the hardest working person I've ever known in my life. He will sometimes go a whole day without eating because he's been working so hard that he just doesn't think about it. He motivates me to be so much better in this regard!

- Christian always wants to be better. I rarely, if ever, feel like he is just stagnant in ANY area of his life. He always wants to run faster, get better grades, be a kinder husband, attend the temple more, eat healthier... Sometimes it's exhausting because I'm lazy ha, but I'm thankful for his drive because I need it!

- Christian will be such a good dad! I'm thrilled that we are having a boy first, because he will get to learn from the best. Little man is very lucky.

- Christian is hilarious. He seriously makes me laugh so hard that I cry at least once a week. He's also great about using his humor to diffuse frustration (a RARE occurrence in our marriage! ;) ), and it's such a blessing for our relationship.

- And finally, Christian is a great kisser. I'm sorry but I had to. He makes me weak in the knees sometimes!

Aaaaaand before I keep blabbing and embarrass my poor husband more than I probably already have, there's my semi short list of the reasons why he's AWESOME and my favorite valentine in the world. Happy early V-day and birthday, schmoozie poo.


up in my grill: a story about personal space

Pregnancy has made me hyper-aware of my personal space, my "bubble" if you will. Even my poor Christian has had to deal with this as I tell him to move over in the middle of the night mmm... probably every time we sleep. That being said, here is a story about the ultimate space invasion that I'm pretty sure even a non-preggie person wouldn't appreciate. Sorry in advance for talking about the gym AGAIN, as well as the extensive use of the word "naked" in this post. You've been warned.

So a little background... on Thursdays and Fridays, I have to shower and get ready at the gym. Long story short, it's just a lot easier than going home. 

And here's the story. Usually I'm the only one in the showers, which is nice because even though I wouldn't care if I had to parade my naked self around in front of a bunch of strangers, it's something I like to avoid if possible. You know. For the people. Anyways, so this morning. Just me in the showers. There were 8 others available. I was seriously in one at the very end of the row. Right as I'm about to shave my legs, I hear the stall next to me open and what do you know. Another naked lady got in the shower. LITERALLY RIGHT NEXT TO ME. 

Here are the reasons why this was a problem:
(As if I should have to explain this, but apparently I do, so....)

1. The showers are entirely plexiglass, also known as entirely see through. Again... Whatever, you can see me naked stranger, I really don't care. Pregnancy has filled me with reckless *naked* abandon obviously. BUT I DON'T WANT TO LOOK AT ANYONE ELSE'S AWKWARD NUDE BODY. EVER.

2. Does anyone else just relish in their showers? Because I do. I love hot water and I love being clean and I love shutting everything out for just a few minutes every day. Except sometimes I do really wish all that could be wrecked by someone else wanting to take a shower right next to me of course. 

3. She had a nice tan, except for on her derriere of course. Meaning that even in my peripheral, I was getting a blinding view of a naked bum that starkly contrasted with the rest of her skin. A naked bum that I did NOT sign up to look at for the duration of my supposedly peaceful shower. So there's that.

4. Can we again just discuss the fact that we were both naked and showering literally a foot from each other?! I mean, did she not think this through before she decided to just hop right in next to me?! Or was she just like "Nothing better than communal showers, I wish we had a public bath in the middle of the town square, but this will have to doooooo!"
Of all the awkward.

5. So since I didn't want to look at her, of course I turned my back. Then I realized I wasn't making things better because I was just mooning her. Aaaaand the awkwardness continues.

6. Then again, maybe she did deserve to be mooned a little bit.......

7. THEN we had to get out of the shower, roughly at the same time of course, and proceed to make awkward eye contact for the next 30 minutes while we simultaneously got ready. All I could think was: 
"You have a really white bum."
Of course.

You guys. Am I crazy for being so irritated that she got in the shower right next to me? 
I don't think it would have bothered me even half as much if she had even just had a bathing suit on! But no, she had to go full-on birthday suit and make it as awkward as possible for both of us. 
Lessons learned from this experience: if you are ever faced with the decision 
"Should I, or should I not, get naked and go shower right next to this person for the ensuing 10 minutes?"
No, you just should NOT do that.


wellness wednesday: what's up, I'm back

It's been a while since one of these!
Truth be told, I haven't had a legitimate "wellness" feeling on a Wednesday basically since I got pregnant.
In the fall, it was more like "well I only threw up twice today so that's good" Wednesday. 
Or "hey I ate something that wasn't cold cereal without wanting to die" Wednesday. 
Then Christmas break came and I was finally feeling better, but my Wednesday's consisted of being a glutton because it felt so good to finally have a desire to eat again. And sorry guys, but gluttony does NOT constitute wellness. So there's that. And now here we are! A month into the new year, and I'm finally back into a regular exercise routine and eating like a normal person again. Although there are definitely days when IMUSTHAVECHOCOLATEMILKRIGHTNOWORIWILLDIE. But I wouldn't be a normal pregnant person if that wasn't the case, so I guess that's fine. 
Anyways. Majorly digressing here......

It feels so wonderful to be taking care of my body again, pregnant as it is! It's strange because it's definitely not responding the same way it used to, and I can't tolerate as much physical exertion because OBVIOUSLY a basketball is now protruding from my stomach. Growing a person is awkward.


Oh wait. There's a lot more than pregnancy that's awkward about this photo.

So I am noticing some differences as I've adjusted my exercise routine specifically:
1. My sciatica has calmed down a fair amount, which is awesome! It was so bad that I couldn't walk without horrific pain in my lower back, hips and legs, and it's much more manageable now. I know for CERTAIN that it's because I've been exercising.... but more specifically weight training. I have such a testimony of weight training! Thank you, amen.

2. I've been sleeping really well. Thankfully I haven't had many nights where I'm tossing and turning, but I notice I sleep much more soundly (and have MUCH crazier dreams ha!) when I've exercised that day verses not. I'm hoping this trend continues as my belly keeps expanding. TBD I guess!

3. I have a lot more energy. I'm noticing the exhaustion sloooowwwly creeping back (blast this second trimester coming to an end!), but my energy definitely spikes on the days I exercise. Again, a trend I'm hoping continues as I keep getting bigger.

4. I'm more...... regular. If you know what I mean. And this is awesome, because who's trying to be constipated when they're also preggo? NOT ME.

So here's what I've been doing, in a nutshell:
Exercise: I've been trying to make it to the gym 3-4 times a week, nothing crazy. This includes roughly 2 days of weight training, a day of hard core kickboxing, maybe some time on the elliptical, and a day for my beloved Zumba of course. Each thing I try to modify so as to cater to my awesome pregnant self
(no jumping in Zumba, inclined benches for weight lifting, don't sweat too much, etc.).
I also end up walking about 30 minutes a day, each day of the week, because of hoofing it across campus so much. I feel pretty good, and I think it's a good amount of exercise for me personally.
Food: Basically I've just been eating normal amounts of normal stuff (ie sandwiches at lunch), with some extra veggies here and there (frozen counts too!), and a sprinkle of something I want every day (like a handful of candy or some chips). Nothing special going on here, I'm just trying not too go crazy and eat everything I want. Which would be an obscene amount, let me tell you. I've also been trying to drink around 100 oz. of water a day which is SO CRUCIAL for me. I think I notice the biggest difference in how I feel overall when I do/don't drink enough water. It's the difference between super grouchy/tired/brain fogged Brooke and happy/clear headed/mostly sane Brooke.
The latter is definitely better.
I also have such a testimony of hydration, thank you amen!

So I know it's probably pointless to post all of this because no one cares but me, baby, and maybe Christian, but you guys. I just feel so much better now that I'm taking care of myself after the last 4 months of basically NOT. I guess I'm just documenting these things now because I'm sure April and May are going to roll around, and I'm going to feel huge and tired all the time, and maybe this will give me some motivation to head to the gym and eat some veggies because :
"You love it more than sitting on the couch and eating chocolate, Brooke!"
Or something like that :) Anyways, another huge digression to finish this lengthy post.
So, you're welcome for that.

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