Thursday, March 29, 2012

Hectic Week!

Okay, so it's been a pretty crazy week. Where oh where should I begin. Let's see...
Baby Update: Baby Adalin has what is called a congenital cystic adenomatoid malformation (CCAM). Basically, there is extra tissue on her right lung that is shifting her heart to the left. I posted a little diagram to explain it a little better (I am not a doctor by any means, so this is 100% not medically accurate. Please don't take the diagram to to a tee, but it's the best way I can explain it). As of right now, it isn't causing any problems and doesn't look like it is going to. I will be seen every two weeks for an ultrasound to monitor the growth of the CCAM. We aren't too worried about it so far. The doctors say that it's something that can be removed after birth, but it may or may not be necessary. I've been transferred to a specialist in Savannah to receive the best care possible. If you have any questions feel free to ask, but I'm not sure how well I can answer them. There are resources HERE and HERE that explain it better (actual medical sources). She's still growing and healthy in all other aspects. She loves to walk on my bladder when I need to pee. We completed our baby registries at Target and Babies R Us and I'm having a baby shower back in Michigan while I'm home at the end of May. I couldn't be more excited!

School Update: School has been pretty crazy. I missed all my classes Monday because of appointments for Adalin, so I felt pretty behind. I'm sure I'll get caught back up quickly though. Our families are visiting next week so I'm skipping a few days to spend with them. That means I have to work my butt off this weekend, Monday, and Tuesday. I should be fine though.
Army Update: My husband's platoon got moved to a different company. He's still in the same unit so all of the training and whatnot that has been scheduled is still the same, but I'm confused about the FRG. His whole platoon got switched, so it affects a lot of people. Our FRG leader's husband is also in the platoon, so I now don't know which company's FRG I really belong to. Honestly, I don't even know if the new company he's a part of has an active FRG. I really hope we find out soon because I like to be involved and even more so I like to be informed. 

Well, that's all for now. I'm off to do homework again. If anyone has questions about Adalin's condition or anything else for the matter, please feel free to contact me! 
God Bless ♥ Vi. 

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Tricare Blessing

Tricare (the military health insurance) is pretty much a blessing in disguise. Having to be sent to a specialist for the baby would normally be extremely stressful for anyone. I know that there are a lot of great insurance providers out there, but in order to get the coverage that Tricare gives us, you'd have to pay quite a bit.
Honestly, Tricare is one of the best perks to being in the military. It's so nice to not worry about medical expenses. We don't have co-pays, or any cost for prescriptions. I actually haven't even bought Tylenol since I got on Tricare.
A lot of people have had issues with Tricare, but that's going to be the case with any insurance company. Luckily, we haven't had any issues to speak of. When we were home for Christmas, I went to the ER due to excessive cramping. The OB clinic at the hospital on post was concerned since I'd just traveled for about 16 hours straight and was only 7 weeks along. Everything ended up being fine, and we didn't pay a dime for our visit. The hospital on post isn't my favorite place to go; it's usually hard to get an appointment within a week, and the wait at the ER is forever long. However, I really can't complain. They keep me healthy, and when they can't do their job, they send us to someone who can. That's exactly what's happening now.
The hospital on post isn't equip to do the ultrasound we need for our baby. They're sending us to a specialist in Savannah in order for us to get the care that we need. Since we got a referral, we won't have any co-pays or anything else. Our appointment is on Monday.
Even though I'm nervous to see what exactly is going on, it will be good to know more. We're continuing to pray that everything is nothing. We aren't going to worry until we know that there's actually a problem. She's been kicking like crazy the past few days. I almost grabbed the person next to me's hand today in the library so he could feel. I kept twitching every time she'd kick. I felt kind of special. It's so fun feeling her kick and punch.
That's all for now! Have a great weekend!
God Bless ♥ Vi.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

It's a...

GIRL! We had our first good ultrasound this morning and we found out that our baby is a girl! Although Hubby and I wanted a boy first for the sake of the "protective older brother," we're extremely excited. I decided a while ago that it would probably be easier for me to have a girl while he's away. He doesn't have official orders yet, but it's been a while since his unit has deployed so we know that one is coming sooner or later. I think a girl will be more fun for me as a first baby because I'll want to do all kinds of cute outfits and whatnot. I've always been much more excited about girls clothes than boys, but I really did think she was going to be a boy.
For those of you who have never been through an ultrasound, let me tell you that it's the most amazing thing. At our first ultrasound, I was only 9 or 10 weeks, so we couldn't see a whole lot. The machine they used was cheap and portable so it really didn't have very good picture quality. Today, the machine was hooked up to a big television screen so we could see everything. It was absolutely magical. Our little girl definitely doesn't take after her mom though. She wouldn't let us get a good picture of her face for anything. She kept putting her arms or hands right in front of her head so we couldn't see much. We did get some good profile shots though. We got to see her tiny toes and fingers too. It's just amazing. The ultrasound technician said that she is sucking on her wrist instead of her thumb. I thought it was kind of funny.
We do have to go see a specialist sometime in the next few weeks because there is something abnormal about her lungs. The doctors on post weren't sure exactly what it was, so we are being sent to Savannah for further testing. From the sounds of it, about 50% of these "growths" go away on their own around 25 weeks (around five weeks from now), but the other half can range anywhere from harmless to serious. We'd rather be safe than sorry, so we're going to get another look. It appears that they'll be monitoring this closely over the next few weeks so I'll keep you all posted as we find out more. We aren't too worried right now. As my husband puts it, there's no sense in worrying when you don't know there's actually something wrong. Prayers would still be appreciated though.
I've been doing some online shopping (well, browsing) this afternoon and have found the cutest nursery theme. Since the beginning, I wanted to do something jungle but it's been hard to find anything that is at all girly with a jungle theme. I found one that was pink elephants a while back, but I wasn't completely in love with it. Today I found one that has giraffes, monkeys, elephants, and zebras. It's flowery and pink and wonderful. I've basically decided that it's going to be the one I put on our registry. I think that we're going to do that within the next few weeks. I'm really excited since Hubby didn't really get to help with the bridal registry.
I'd like to thank everyone for being so excited for us. The positive response has been overwhelming. We are so happy and thankful that everyone is happy for us. This baby truly is a blessing to our little family. To everyone who has wished us congratulations, I'd like to thank you personally. Your happiness means more to us than you'll ever know.
Like I said, I'll keep everyone posted on our little girl's lungs as we find out more information. Hopefully we'll hear from the specialist within a few days to find out when our appointment is. Thank you again for your happiness and prayers.
God Bless ♥ Vi

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Tomorrow! Tomorrow!

Tomorrow is the big day! We find out the sex of the baby and I couldn't be more excited about it. I'm finally starting to get a gut feeling that it's a boy, but we'll know for sure tomorrow.
It's been hard for me to decide what I think the baby is until the past week or so. A lot of my friends have had gut feelings since they first found out, or shortly after. Some of the girls haven't had a guess until around 3 months or so, but I'm almost 5 months now and am just now starting to guess.
My friends' guesses are pretty split down the middle last time I checked. The people guessing girl have more "concrete" guesses. The baby's heart rate hasn't been below 140 since I was 10 weeks,  and the wives' tale says that's a girl. I've been craving sweet things too, but I can't remember which gender that goes to. The ring test (holding a ring on a thread over the belly) says girl too. The Chinese gender chart says boy. Most of my friends with boys have said that their sickness was less with the boys than the girls. I haven't been sick hardly at all. I've had some heart burn, but other than that, nothing too serious. I haven't decided whether I'm carrying high or low. I'll post pictures tomorrow after we find out. My appointment is at 0930, but we probably won't post until after I get back from class around 5 tomorrow evening.
I'm excited to see how much the baby has changed since the last ultrasound since it's been about 3 months. This pregnancy is flying by for me. It's hard to believe I'm officially over half way through now. It seems like just yesterday we were starting to get positives on tests. I feel that the next few months are going to go quickly too, between going home for two weeks, a baby shower, and starting new classes online. On top of all of that, I am still hoping to do more photography as long as I can. It's definitely nice having a little extra cash throughout the month. I feel like it's going to be June before I know it.
School started back up yesterday. It's weird going back. I really didn't think I'd mind, but I enjoyed my week at home more than I thought I would. There's only 6 or 7 weeks left in the semester though. Then I'll be home a lot more than I will probably want to. Hubby has classes at night for a few more weeks, so I'm able to get quite a bit done in the three hours he is gone. Our house is finally starting to get a little more organized. It's been a long process, but things are starting to come together. I'm off to go clean and work on a project that's due Thursday. I have a feeling that nothing will be getting done after we find out tomorrow.
As I said before, I'll post later tomorrow with our big news! Have a great rest of the week!
God Bless ♥ Vi

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Live Like a Lady

Happy St. Patrick's Day everyone! Hubby and I were lucky enough to go to Savannah today for the St. Patrick's Day parade. It was a real blast. Even though the parade was really long, and parking was ridiculous, we had a lot of fun with some friends.
One thing I noticed while in Savannah is how unladylike some women can act. As far as I know, none of the women I'm referring to are Army wives, but they very easily could be. In Savannah during the parade, some women, called the "kissing bandits" run into the parade and kiss people on the cheek (most of the time) with bright red lipstick. From what I've heard, they don't do it to everyone, but mostly the soldiers and band members. Most of the time, they don't jump on floats, into cars, or run through the bands in order to get a certain person's cheek. Well, one woman (who was clearly drunk, I might add) decided she needed to kiss someone from every float/band/formation that passed. It was to the point where she was chasing vehicles and jumping on the side of them or in them in order to kiss people. She even kissed a goat, and a gas cap... This woman was obnoxious.
Considering the fact that there were an estimated million people at the parade, we tried to be tolerant of this crazy woman. However, there's only so much a pregnant lady can take. Eventually, everyone was getting pretty sick of her. She was actually stopping every float for a few seconds in order to get her kiss. I know it doesn't seem like a few seconds would matter, but when every float stops for 10 seconds, it adds quite a bit of time to the parade. It was over 3 hours long easily, and we left before it was over.
All this being said, I wanted to remind all you ladies that it's important to make your man look good whether he is in uniform or not. It doesn't matter if he's at work or just out and about, what you do affects him in more ways than you may realize. I was shocked at how obnoxious some people were being today. I understand, it's a celebration, people are bound to be excited, crazy, and even drunk... but there's a line that needs to be acknowledged and not crossed. If you're willing to kiss a goat in front of hundred and hundreds of people for the sake of a few cheers, you should probably stop drinking for a while.
I don't mean to sound like a party pooper, but there's a point where obnoxious behavior just isn't funny anymore. Ladies, don't act in a manner that you wouldn't want your father or your boss to see. If you would freak out if your dad walked by, change your act. After all, a million people means almost that many cameras. You're bound to end up on the internet.
Make your man proud to call you his! You're proud to call him yours, so return the favor. It's common courtesy, or maybe just an excuse for me to ask you to behave. Either way, it's better to make your man proud of you than ashamed, no matter what the situation.

Baby Update: Only 4 more days until we find out the sex of the baby! I still feel pretty small for almost twenty weeks, but I'm not complaining. I've got twenty weeks left to be big and uncomfortable. The belly is finally starting to show a little more though. My back and feet are kind of killing me today after standing for so long. I'm about to soak my feet and relax for the rest of the night before school starts back up on Monday. I'm really not looking forward to it. I've enjoyed my time at home much more than I expected to. Luckily, I have less than two months until school is out and I start online. I've got a ton to do between now and then, and this child is starting to wear me out. Overall, I'm feeling pretty good, just random aches and pains. I'll update you all later in the week about our ultrasound on Wednesday! Prayers for a healthy baby would be greatly appreciated!

God Bless ♥ Vi

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Business is Booming!

This week has been great for my photography business. I really think that this is what I'm supposed to be doing. I'll post some of what I've done this week on here. I'm in love with some of these pictures. I'm scared to make a full commitment to this field because it's so flexible. Like I said, this week has been amazing, but next week is looking pretty empty. I know that it's the same for a lot of jobs, but I'm a little worried about dedicating my life to this. If my husband continues his military career, I will more than likely stick with this. His salary can support us, so my income (or lack of) is more spending money than anything. It gives a little bit more of a comfort zone than the military alone does. If all goes as planned, hubby will make a career out of the military, giving me the freedom to experiment with what exactly I want in life. It might be photography, or a desk job somewhere, or just staying at home with our wonderful children. The world is open for me right now.
That's what I love about my husband. He's found something he loves doing, so he's completely accepting for me to not know exactly what I want to do yet. For the longest time, I knew exactly what I wanted in life. I wanted to go to college, and be either a journalist, psychologist, or graphic designer. I wanted to get a stable career, then start my search for a husband and eventually start a family. Then.. I met my husband. My mindset completely changed. To be completely honest, I'd love to be a stay-at-home mom to this little one, but I think I'd go crazy being stuck at home all the time. That's why this photography stuff is working perfectly for me. I leave when I want/need to, and still work from home. The other big concern that I have with pursuing this as a career is that it might make it harder for me to find a different job later in life. I'll have my degree and everything, but I'm not sure how self-employment looks on a resume. It might look fantastic, or it might look like I have no sense of teamwork. If any of you have ever gone through this, please feel free to comment with your experiences. I'm really trying to figure out my future.
Spring break has been going well. I've been up early the past three days, but the rest of break is open and ready for me to sleep through. I've been having some trouble sleeping, so the doctor told me to take a Tylenol PM before I go to bed. It's actually helping. Earlier in this pregnancy I had some issues with sleep aids. I was getting some pretty insane nightmares so I refused to take them. These are doing okay so far. I'm still not sleeping as much as I used to, but it's better than the past few weeks.
If any of you in the Hinesville/Savannah area are interested in booking a session with me, you can contact me through my photography Facebook page HERE. My portfolio is available there as well. I've got tons of availability in April, and a bit left this month. My rates are good, and I'm willing to work with anyone to come up with something workable. I am really thinking that this is what I want to do with my life.
God Bless ♥ Vi

Sunday, March 11, 2012

A Much Needed Break

It's spring break week! Thank goodness. I'm so exhausted, more than I ever imagined possible. I should catch everyone up on the past week.
Wednesday I went to the doctor for baby. We're all healthy and growing. Baby's heartbeat was 158 steady. We find out the sex next Wednesday, 10 days! Thursday I took two midterms and worked with the therapy dogs before escaping for break. Friday we didn't do a whole lot. We hung out with some friends of ours, it's starting to become an every Friday thing. I love it.
 Yesterday, Hubby and I went up to Hilton Head Island for the day. We brought Mia too. She loved the beach and the sand. She wasn't too keen on the waves, but she still played in the water with us. I can't believe how much she's growing. She loved sunbathing with me too. I was really surprised that I didn't get burned, thankful though!
Today I've got a Thirty-One meeting with all my team members. It should be good to see everyone and connect again. I haven't seen most of these ladies since January.
For the most part, the rest of the week I plan to sit on my butt and relax. I don't want to do anything except lay in the sunshine and relax. It seems like nearly everything is stressing me out beyond normal. My hormones have been pretty crazy.
On a high note, my photography business has started to take off. I've had two sessions in the past week or so, and this coming week I've got another. I'm loving my new car still, but I'm definitely having to work it off. I don't want my husband to have to pay for everything. Doing photography is helping me feel like I'm more than just a house wife.
Sorry this update is sort of boring, I'm a bit of a zombie today. My mind is fried from last week. I'll update later this week with how the week is going. I've got a shoot on Tuesday at Tybee Island so I'll hopefully get some more sun. Have a great week everyone!
God Bless ♥ Vi.

Monday, March 05, 2012

Combined or Separate?

I should first say that I consider myself no different than any other wife in the United States. Sure, every marriage is different... However, I think that no occupation/situation makes one wife "better" than another.
I'm not talking about cheating or staying faithful, clearly the faithful wife would be "better." I'm talking about whether or not military spouses should classify themselves with the rest of the world.
I've found that there is absolutely no way to win this argument. Let's look at both sides of the argument. I'm not supporting either side. 

If you say that military spouses are equal to civilian spouses, you get shunned. Why would their husbands' occupations make women think they're better than others? (Please don't go off about how being in the military is more than an occupation. I know! That's absolutely NOT what this post is about.) Women whose husbands are not in the military are no different than military wives, right? We all hope for a happy little family, a clean house, and a love like no one else's. We're all equal.

If you say that military spouses are "better," separate or different than civilian spouses, you get shunned. How on earth could you put two completely different lifestyles? Civilian wives will never know real heartache or worry. They never have to go through deployment, or even months of long training... They don't have to move all the time for their husband's work (that's not always true... but I've heard the argument). They aren't constantly put second behind their husband's job (again, not always true...). Being a military spouse is completely different. AND military spouses have to stick together. They can't just go off on their own and live their lives. They need to be a strong whole; civilian spouses don't understand that.

I'm going to say this again because I can already hear people chewing me out for something crazy and far out. I'm not supporting either argument. A wife is a wife is a wife. Take that how you please. I love my military friends just as much as I love my civilian friends. Just thought I'd give some food for thought. I'd love to hear your stories and opinions on this matter, but let's keep it drama free. No hostility please, just opinions!

New Year's Resolution Update: It's March! I worked out with my husband last week. Holy cow I've been sore! We worked out on Wednesday and I must say, Thursday-Saturday I was in quite a bit of pain. I'm starting to cut back on the working out a little bit. I've been super crampy and miserable because I pushed myself just a little bit too hard. Anyway, life is great. I haven't done a lot of cooking lately... I've been in one of those moods where I don't want to cook, ever. The resolution to get back on the dean's list... Well, I don't know if that's going to happen this semester. I've got a lower grade than I'd like in a few of my classes, but it's only mid-semester. I've still got some time. On a high note, I've officially registered for all of my classes for both Summer and Fall, all online. I'm taking 12 credits this summer (full load at GSU) and 15 in the Fall. I was planning to take 17 as I am this semester, but I've decided it's probably a better idea to cut back a little bit. I might be adding a "fitness walking" class which would bump  my load to 16. I'm still on course to graduate in the Fall of 2013 (1 1/2 years early!) so I'm pretty excited.

Gob Bless ♥ Vi