more maui... in the 3rd trimester!

May 30, 2013

I'm still in Maui. It's still wonderful. We've ate our body weight in Hawaiian treats such as macadamia pancakes, coconut gelato, fish tacos, and shaved ice. We've conquered the Road to Hana in a Mustang convertible rental car.  I have the ugliest most patchy sunburn on my back because apparently my SPF 60 sunscreen coated hands didn't make it all the way during application.  All I can say is that I'm thankful my friend Rosie didn't choose strapless bridesmaid dresses for her wedding that is 2 weeks from now. I'll stand out enough without insane tan lines just by being the pregnant one.   
Speaking of pregnancy... today marks the beginning of the 3rd trimester. The glory days (AKA the 2nd trimester) are in the past and from here on out I'm preparing myself for discomfort, swollen feet, and insomnia, most of which I've already experienced.  It's so glamourous growing a baby!   
It's amazing that 3 months from now I'll be begging this child to hurry up and be born.  Lately everyone has been asking if I'm ready for the huge life change. Some like to throw in their horrific labour stories as well. People get a sick pleasure out of terrifying first time moms, I'm certain of it.  Really though, can you ever be ready?! It won't always be easy, but I'll take what is thrown at me it as it comes.  
I've found that in Hawaii I'm unmistakably pregnant. At home I can wear baggy clothes and somewhat succeed at hiding my belly if I really want to. Here in paradise, I'm flaunting my bump in bikinis and summer dresses. People stare, but I'm sure that pre-pregnant me probably found myself doing the same.  Pregnancy really is a crazy, amazing thing. 
With my photographer husband and tripod both back home, I've enlisted my mom as my personal maternity photographer for the trip.  I'm a bit bossy, but I think that the results are worth it. 

That's all for now, it's time to enjoy another perfect day of sunshine followed by a luau this evening. I can't drink my fancy tropical drinks, but I'll certainly attack that buffet!  


May 27, 2013

In recent weeks I've neglected the blog, as I've been overwhelmingly busy with work and the start of the summer wedding and birthday season.  I've been back and forth across our great big country several times, having little energy to do much else but sleep on my few days off. 
Fortunately, the end of May came with a week's vacation. My mom was able to get the time off as well, and it was decided... we'd go on a last mother-daughter trip before I become the mother and she becomes grandma. We anxiously opted to fly standby to make the trip more economical. We woke up in Edmonton, unsure of the day's final destination. We went to bed here.... 

And here we will stay for the rest of the week. So excuse my absence my wonderful blog readers, but there are virgin cocktails to be consumed.   

high on sunshine and life.

May 13, 2013

Springtime has arrived. Last week was pure bliss with hot, hot sunny days. Between flying to the arctic and a few months of morning sickness, this past winter felt as though it would never end. I'm thrilled that it appears there is actually a light at the end of the long, miserable tunnel known as winter.  
The sun is shining, the snow is melted, and I'm feeling great.  Now if I could just stay this comfortable throughout the summer, life would be wonderful. I'm not getting my hopes up. I know that hot, sweaty days and swollen feet are in my not so distant future.  
In the spirit of the warm weather, we have started to make our yard look a whole lot nicer. And by we, I mean Ryan. He planted shrubs and trees (I helped... a bit) and pulled up sod to create a pretty little area by our fence. I help out by watering our new plants when I'm at home during the day.

 Feeling inspired to have a beautiful yard, I ventured to the garden centre with the intent of buying gorgeous flowers to plant and make the yard a bit more girly. It didn't take long to remember that I am absolutely useless when it comes to such things as gardening, and I left empty handed. Grandma, I know that you are reading this... please come plant flowers for me. I will water them and admire them. 
The rest of the week was lazy and great, with the exception of one long work day that took me far north and back. I was fortunate enough to have great crew, making the day reasonably bearable.  
This weekend we ventured to our home town, Red Deer. We spent Friday night with Ryan's parents who were just about to jet off to Mexico.  They are celebrating their 40th anniversary, so they certainly deserve the vacation! 
Saturday we dressed up and headed to celebrate Ron and Sky's wedding. The weather could not have been more perfect for their big day.  I love weddings, especially when they are friends that I've known for quite awhile. Ron has been to so many weddings as a photographer, so it was fun to watch him have his turn walking down the aisle with a great big smile on his face. Pregnant, emotional me managed to maintain my composure, which was a nice bonus. While the rest of the guests sipped beverages at the reception, I made up for the fact that I couldn't have any wine by indulging in food. So much food. Regret would follow, but binge eating is always worth it in the moment.  

Sunday was Mother's Day. We spent awhile visiting Ryan's grandma before taking my mom out for dinner. We opted for a sushi night, and I was in tempura and maki heaven. I might not be a mom yet, but I will be soon, so I requested ice cream as my Mother's Day wish.  We headed to my beloved Little Ice Cream and Soda Shop, where I showed no moderation and chose not one, but two flavours.... cake batter and mint chocolate chip, in case you care to know. 

I blamed the baby for my unhealthy eating, as per usual. I know a few ladies who have been through tough losses and long to be in my position right now, so they were in my thoughts Mother's Day as I reminded myself of just how lucky I am to be growing a healthy baby.  The same thoughts got me through my glucose tolerance test this morning, where I was forced to drink a not so yummy sugary drink and have my blood taken to test for gestational diabetes. It wasn't much fun for a big wimp like me, but I got through it. 
I almost forgot to mention that on Sunday evening we booked a mother-daughter trip that will take place in a couple of weeks. I'd tell you where we are going, but flying standby one never really knows.  Regardless, it will be a great time and a good excuse to show off our pretty pedicures that we got last weekend at the Walmart spa... yes, I'm completely serious.  

Spring is wonderful, life is good, and I'm even looking forward to work this week as it will take me to visit my friend Kimmy in Saskatoon and to eat French onion soup in Montreal! Oh, and did I mention that one of my best friends and my former Dubai roommate is coming to Canada to visit me in July?! We will have so many adventures, even though I'll be a giant, waddling pregnant lady by that point.
 I'm not sure how on Earth I'm so lucky, but I'll take it! 

springtime in yellowknife

May 3, 2013

It's May!  Spring is in the air! I can feel it! The days are getting warmer, the sun is shining well into the evening, and on a less happy note... the mosquitos are swarming.  
I'm excited for spring because it's generally followed by summer (but we live in Alberta, so who knows)  and summer means warmth and ice cream and happiness. I'm also a bit terrified because summer means the arrival of baby Shippelt. While that's wonderful and I can't wait to meet him or her, I think any first time mom who says that they are 100% excited and 0% scared is a big, fat liar. Except not really fat... just big. That's a bit of a touchy subject.  
Back to my spring bliss... I started my month of May by going to work. I squeezed into my uniform, which at 23 weeks pregnant is becoming somewhat of a challenge.

 Our first stop was the lovely Fort McMurray, where we brought a plane full of (mostly) men back to work.  You can always tell the difference between the ones headed to work, and the ones beginning days off. On the way up they sat quietly and graciously accepted their snacks and soft drinks. On the way back to Edmonton, they were loud and rowdy, and a few even had the nerve to complain about the lack of alcoholic beverages available onboard... because Heaven forbid, they hadn't had a drink in over 2 weeks.  Without being the least bit subtle, I clutched my baby belly and forced fake sympathy.  Try 5 months, boys.  
Our final destination that day was Yellowknife. For the past few months I've done what I can to avoid the arctic city, but with temperatures rising it just might be okay this time around.  We got to our hotel late, and while the rest of the crew planned to go for a bite to eat and a drink or two, I headed to my room and called it a night.  In this industry we call anti-social people like me "slam-clickers", but being pregnant has given me a hassle free pass.  
I was up early the next day as the sun peaked through the blinds.  My husband's cousin Sarah (would that make her my cousin-in-law?) also happened to be working in Yellowknife at the time and we'd agreed to go for breakfast following her night shift.  We met at my hotel and I dined on some fabulous chocolate chip pancakes, leaving me in a carb-induced state of laziness for the next few hours. 

It was fun to see a familiar face in a place where I don't know anyone.  Back in Edmonton we lead busy lives between work and home, and rarely see each other.  In Yellowknife, there isn't a whole heck of a lot else to do, so it was a perfect opportunity to catch up.  
As Sarah headed back to her accommodations to sleep the day away, I rejoiced in the fact that the temperature was above zero.  I decided to venture outside for a walk, feeling as though I should make the most of my free day. My flight home wasn't until 4 pm, and I had plenty of time to kill.
I headed to Javaroma, a pricey little coffee shop that I love for the fact that it's the only place I've found to serve espresso in Yellowknife.  I got myself a decaf mocha, and because it pains me to order decaf I rewarded myself by topping it with whipped cream. 
With my cup in hand I headed for the Frame Lake trail, unsure of what to expect given the fact that there were still patches of snow on the ground. In the fall, I'd loved this trail and this was the warmest day I'd experienced here since October. Google tells me that it's a 9 kilometre trek.  It was a gorgeous day, warm enough to walk without a jacket. With a few icy and muddy patches I had to take it slow, at least for me. I'd normally power through it, but these days I try to be a bit more cautious.  The weather was beautiful, and few people were on the trail. It was a great walk, and when I got back to the hotel I felt energized and thankful that I can still maintain my active lifestyle more than halfway through my pregnancy. 

Back in my room I showered and packed my bags, wasting time watching horrible daytime television until it was time to catch my shuttle. I flew home to Edmonton, where it was even warmer outside! 
The rest of the evening was spent watching the finale of Big Brother Canada. At the shocking ending of the show, Ryan and I were happy fans. It was a bittersweet moment, as there will now be a void in our Sunday, Wednesday, and Thursday evenings.  Come on summer, and Big Brother USA!