Rest peacefully, Grandma

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

My sweet grandma passed away on Monday.  She will be missed by everyone who met and knew her.  Her biggest vice was loving too much.  She was beautiful inside and out and I know how lucky I was to be her granddaughter.

Rest peacefully, Gram.  You will be loved and missed every single day.  I will pass along your stories to your great grandson and he will know who you were and that you loved him.

Mom & Dad visit Erie

We were sooo lucky to have my parents visit Erie this past weekend and help finish up all the remaining things on our "DO BEFORE THE BABY COMES" list.  My heart is at rest knowing that we got all of those things that have been weighing on my mind like cleaning the fridge and stove and clearing out the garage.  Brandon and I could have done it by ourselves, but with his work schedule and my exhaustion it would have taken three times as longer.  We finished everything on our list this weekend and even had time for hanging out and laughing/talking.  It was so nice to have them come and visit one last time before our little studerbaby is here and hogging everyone's attention (hehhe, just kidding, baby).

Of course, every time my family is here I somehow manage to put them to work- but let it be announced publicly that after Grey get's here, the only work they'll have to do when they visit is hold, play, and change diapers:)
Washing snot-nosed Bullet windows

Fire marshal dad taking care of junk from the garage/yard

My job for the weekend:  resting & sleeping with Bullet

We even got the hammock hung up in the sun room!  Brandon's loving it.

Stretch Armstrong

It has been baffling to Brandon and I at how much skin can stretch...mainly the skin on my stomach.  I was reading back through some of our old posts and literally laughed out loud when I was making such a big deal about my stomach at 20 some weeks...I even announced aloud (to Bullet, hah), "Holy crap, I wish my stomach was still that small!"  I had dramatically posted 'What a difference 14 weeks make'...oh Tabitha, if I only knew what a difference 9 months make?!

I actually would like to take a moment and boast about how our big baby is probably laughing hysterically about how much he can stretch his momma's belly.  For the past two months or so, my belly has been measuring 2cms bigger than expected for my due date.  So, at 32 weeks, I was measuring 34 cms...and at 35 weeks, I measured 37cm.  They even sent me for an ultrasound to make sure that everything looked okay and we got an A+.  So, our little babe really wanted to see how much the body is willing to take (his mum's body, of course) and when I went for my 36 week check in...I measured in at a whooping 40 cm!!!!  Newsflash little baby- its not funny.

So in honor of my ever expanding belly, I wanted to just really make a mockery of myself and show a progression from the beginning to present day.  Granted- I still have 3 weeks left, so who knows what I'll look like by then (think the girl who ate the gum and turned into a blueberry in Willy Wonka's Chocolate Factory...minus the blue).
7 weeks 

17 weeks

21 weeks

30 weeks

32 weeks (side & front views)

37 weeks (side & front views)

One last Johnstown visit before the babe!

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

We headed back to Johnstown this past weekend for one last time before our little sweet baby bundle arrives (only 4 weeks to go!) Brandon had the honor of being best man in Corey and Stacy's wedding.  Corey and Brandon have been friends forEVER, seriously and we had a great time.  We made it back just in time to get to the church for the rehearsal and my feet were swollen from the car ride in.  Oh, pregnancy bliss. 

It felt good to be "home" had been about a month since the last time we were in Johnstown!  Saturday was a long and happy day.  Absolutely beautiful weather for the wedding - in the 60s for a March wedding- crazy!  I was so excited to wear a dress again finally, and after I realized how comfortable it was...I'm pretty sure that is going to be my outfit of choice for the rest of the pregnancy- hhaha.   

Of course, leave it to us to have some type of weird, freak accident on the morning of the wedding.  After we picked up our belly pics (see post!) we went to Brandon's parents' house so he could get ready.  We had strict orders to pick up the groom at 11:30am and I was to drop them off at the church by noon.  (Ceremony was at 1:30pm).  Well, we are just about ready to walk about the door at 11:25am to pick up Core, when Brandon steps on Sydney's tail (his parents' older dog who can't see) and she snaps around, BITES HIS KNEE, and rips about a 6 inch hole in his tux pants.  There he was standing, unscathed, with his hairy knee and shin blantantly exposed to the world.  I could have died.  5 minutes before we have to pick up the groom and Brandon has half his leg hanging out of his tux pants.  As the problem-solvers we are (thanks work!) Brandon ran upstairs to finish printing his best man speech, and I jumped in the car to pick up Corey while dialing the tux shop.  Luckily, they had another pair of pants for him and we were able to roll into the church by 12:05pm...pretty darn good, I think.  **Shout out to Miller's tux shop- they didn't charge us anything for the ripped pants, apparently that $5 dollar accident fee is for exactly that reason!

Corey & Stacy's ceremony was sweet and  perfect and the reception was a blast.  I even made it out on the dancefloor a few times and took my baby bump for a few turns and booty shakes- HHAHAHhaha.  This little baby is going to have some rythm if I have anything to do with it!  It was so nice to spend some time with family and friends before our addition to our little family arrives.

CPR & AED Certified!

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Brandon and I attended a CPR class this past Saturday and are now certified to adminster CPR to adults, children, and infants!  Hopefully we'll never have to use our skills, but it feels so empowering to know that we now have the tools to save someone's life!  I really learned so much in the class; we also learned how to work an AED and to properly give someone the Heimlich maneuver.  We even learned some early warning signs of a heart attack and stroke.  I am proud of us.  I would certainly suggest to anyone to take a CPR class- so worth it!

Not only was it a great class- but I am also making great headway on my "To do before I'm 30" List.  Some people make a bucket list, but that is just to loose of a deadline for me.  I need a solid date.  My "by 30" list looks like this...(and I still have 3.5 years to go!)

1. Visit Thailand
2. Grow "mermaid" hair
3. Have a signature dish
4. Go topless on the beach
5. Learn to golf
6. Learn to drive stick
7. Become certified in CPR
8. Become fluent in Spanish again
9. Grow a garden
10. Become a mother (almost!)

Labor Playlist

So, with 5 weeks to go, I'm getting everything prepared for our big trip to the hospital!  So exciting and a little scary.  I keep thinking that I am VERY ready to stop being pregnant...but then that means that we're going to have a baby living with us!  It seems so strange that I haven't felt like my normal self for 9 months, and now when we get home from the hospital, our whole lives will be different.  Seems like moms should get a little break in between the being pregnant and bringing the baby home:)  hahha.

I have packed our bags so that our trip out the door will be easier.  The car seat is installed in the Jeep- which has gas in it.  And we've been trying to get all the last minute things on our baby prep list completed.  Just kind of waiting and waddling around at this point. 

As one of our hospital items, we are bringing my ipod and I have been working on two playlists for the day.  Granted, come that time- I might be completely annoyed by everything and need total silence, so who knows if I'll even use it!  (Brandon started laughing when he heard some of the transition songs and he thinks I'm going to scream in his face, "turn this crap off!!!")  hahha...we'll see.  But I love music and dancing and singing/humming.  So, I'm hoping that the music will keep me focused and be a little better for our babe to hear while he makes his grand entrance into the world.  For other moms looking for playlists suggestions online (you know I did!) and for anyone just plain interested, here's where we're at:)

Early/Active Labor (excited, nervous, pain gradually getting worse but not unbearable, needed: upbeat, happy, excited)
All Rebel Rockers- Say Hey (I love you)
Three Dog Night - Joy to the World
Eric Church –Hell on the heart
Uncle Kracker – Smile
Zac Brown Band- Whatever it is
Sheryl Crow – Love is Free
Jack Johnson – Taylor
Sugarland – Come on get higher
Black Eyed Peas – I gotta feeling
Kelly Clarkson - My life would suck without you
Dierks Bentley- Free and Easy
Citizen Cope- Suns gonna Rise
Duffy – Mercy
Journey – Don’t Stop Believin’
Modest Mouse- Float On
Colbie Callait – Tailor Made
U2 – Beautiful Day
Lady Antebellum - American Honey
Martin Sexton – Wild Angels
Plain White T’s – 1, 2, 3, 4
Brad Paisley- The World
Jack Zerby-Before you were Born
Beyonce- Halo
Miranda Lambert - White Liar
Brad Paisley- Ticks
Kanye West - Stronger

Transition & Birth(really hating life, pain & suffering, needed:  calm and focus)
Michael Maxwell- Serenade
Debussy – Ballade
Debussy- Valse Romantique
Debussy – Nocturne
Tchaikovsky – The Sleeping Beauty – Pas d’action
Yiruma- River Flows Through you
Ludovico Einaudi- I giorni
Jim Brickman – Lake Erie Rainfall
Slumdog Soundtrack - Latika’s theme
Enya- How can I keep from singing
Iron & Wine - Flightless Bird
Ingrid Michaelson – Can’t help falling in love with you
Dixie chicks – Lullaby
Ray LaMontagne- Hold you in my arms
Ingrid Michaelson – Keep Breathing
Johnny Cash- In my life
Mandy Moore – Have a little faith in me
Hillary Scott- Never Alone
The Beatles - Let it Be
Reeve Carney – Think of you

This list was compiled with some of my favorite songs, suggestions from other pregnant blogs, and great songs that I now love due to my friends- (Can you find yours':  Tasha, Taryn, Katie, Steph Morem?)  Any suggestions are welcomed for either list!!

March Kindness

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

For our March Kindness, Brandon and I are holding a March Madness Basketball tournament pool again this year to benefit the PA Special Olympics.  We are holding the tournament pool online this year to try to make it easier to join and keep track of all the scores.  If you are interested in joining our pool- hooray!   The details are below:

“Thank you for all that you and your friends do to support Special Olympics PA!  It is much appreciated!”  -Matt B. Aaron, President & CEO (hand written note at the bottom of last year’s donation thank you letter)

We are holding the March Madness Tournament Pool fundraiser for the PA Special Olympics again this year!  Like last year, whether you know all the players’ stats or don’t even recognize some of the teams’ names- it’s easy to join in on the fun.  All proceeds will be donated to the PA Special Olympics from “Your Friends” (with a list of all participant names).  Last year, we raised $290 dollars to support the PA Special Olympics and in the process- Stacy & Duke Soltesz (Detroit, MI) won a $50 VISA gift card!  This year, it could be you!!

How do you play?
In our attempt to make it easier (and more green!) to participate this year; we have set up our pool online.  Please visit: to enter your picks for tournament play after March 14th (Selection Sunday) and before March 18th (first round).  (See instructions below). Send via snail mail your entry fee of $10 per bracket.  **If you are more comfortable completing your bracket via paper, please feel free to mail in a paper copy of your picks & we will add you to the online pool once we receive your paper bracket!

At, you will need to create a login and password (it’s free!).  Once you’re logged into the site;
1.    - In the left index, select User Tools
2.   - Select Join a private pool
3.    - Select the March Madness button
4.    - Pool Login Name:  Studer
5.     -Pool Password:  madness1
     -To make your selections, choose My Picks across the top (in orange & black).  Next time you log in, you will find our pool by selecting My Pools in the left index.

You can even make more than one bracket if you want!  In the left index, select Pool Options > Add a pick sheet, name it, and choose your picks!  (reminder:  each bracket has a fee of $10, see above)

How do you win?
Points will be given for each correct winner picked within the different rounds of tournament play.  The participant with the most points at the end of the tournament will win a $50 VISA gift card!!
In the spirit of the Special Olympics oath, “Let me win, but if I cannot win, let me be brave in the attempt,” the participant with the least amount of points at the end of the tournament will receive a $5 gift card to Starbucks!

Round 1: 1 point
Round 2: 2 points
Round 3: 4 points
Round 4: 8 points
Round 5: 12 points
Round 6: 15 points
Tie-breaker:  Total points scored in the championship game

If you need our home address to send in your entry fee:  Please email or facebook msg. me!!  We'd love new people to join our pool and help raise money to support the PA Special Olympics!

We have a really smart baby, well he has a big head anyway!

For the past two doc appointments, I have been measuring about two inches bigger in the belly than my gestional dates, so I was recently sent for an ultrasound to make sure we are on target and there are no other reasons for the big belly.

For pregs who stumbled upon my blog while google searching, "Big belly measurements at 33 weeks" (like I did, duh).  Some reasons for a big belly that the doctor explained was:
1. Big baby or the due date is off
2. too much amniotic fluid...i.e. I could have gestional diabetes
3. I'm just fat (hah!)

So, off to my ultrasound I happily went since I'd get to see the little (or big!) man again - I hadn't seen my babe since the 20 week mark.  So it was nice to see him wiggling around and happy in there.  I even caught a glimpse of him sucking his little thumb- ahhh!  I can't wait for him to get here!!

The doc called the following Monday and said that everything looks within range on the ultrasound and all is fine.  Apparently the huge head I saw on the ultrasound screen is normal?  Faaaaaantastic!  She also said that they guess he weighs about 4.5 lbs which makes me want to squeeze him!  I can't wait until his sweet, big head is out in the world!

Pup Playdate

Bullet was lucky to have some new friends visit our house this past Friday.  Our friends, Sarah and Gregg brough over their two chocolate labs for a pup playdate.  Bullet really loves meeting new dogs and people, but on our walks he gets so excited that he generally makes people nervous (especially since he looks a little scary).  So, it was really a treat for him to get a chance to run around crazy and play.

Bullet, Elliot, and Parker got to run around and go crazy outside with the dads.  Bullet was so excited and running around so much he threw up! hahhaa, that's how happy he was.  Of course, he could care less and as soon as he got it all out- he kept on playing!

They came in after a little while and continued to play.  The two puppies, Bullet and Parker, really had fun together while Elliot mostly hung out with the humans.  After awhile, Bullet was really dragging and clearly exhausted.  Elliot and Parker have a lot of experience getting to play with other dogs (they have lots of cousins) but since this was Bullet's first playdate- he was completely worn out.  When the Moffett crew finally had to head home, Bullet cried for his new friends for about 10 minutes and stared out the window for them.  He really had a great time- can't wait for the next playdate!