Category Archives: kitties

A year ago…the start of our greatest adventure

A year ago, my husband surprised me and agreed he was finally ready to have kids. A little backstory, when we got married, almost 9 years ago, we agreed that we didn’t want to have kids and would travel more, with at least one international vacation a year. We disappointed our parents that our siblings would have to produce grandchildren, not us. Fast forward to my 33rd birthday when my biological clock started ticking and I changed my mind. Mr F may have taken some convincing but now that I’m 35 weeks pregnant, we both couldn’t be happier. Mr F is already looking forward to teaching our little girl to swim in the Puget Sound!

A year ago, when Mr F said he was finally ready, I immediately stopped taking birth control on July 15th, starting taking the most highly recommended natural prenatal vitamins and asked my doctor for all the updates in vaccines, what medications/supplements were okay or not okay to take, and told my family. They were very surprised! Shockingly, when we started looking at houses, we immediately found the perfect house in a great neighborhood, down the street from a great elementary school, so we were able to close at the end of August!

While it took a few months of trying, we were very lucky. The first month after stopping birth control, my cycle was 35 days long and I got way too excited that I was pregnant. Two friends suggested reading Taking Charge of Your Fertility to have a better understanding of what was going on. I started timing my work trips around day 20 when I noticed a temperature rise. We went to Italy on a romantic vacation in September, hoping for an Italian surprise. In December, Mr F even joined me in San Diego for a conference and monitoring visit, since it made sense to stay there for the weekend. I’m so glad he did because by December 15th, I knew I was late. When my sisters and I went to the 5th Avenue production of Little Mermaid on December 15th, I didn’t eat the sushi, to be on the safe side. On Sunday, December 19th, 2016 I had my first positive pregnancy test! My sister, Janie texted me later that day, to ask if I had taken a pregnancy test yet. Of course, I told her the exciting news, then I called Katie, Mom, and Dad. I even double checked and got a second positive pregnancy test on the 21st at my primary care doctor’s office too!  It was the best Christmas so far!

In January, we started to nickname the baby “cabbage” after watching the OA. My grandmother, Tootie, started thinking of names in Tagalog and wanted us to call the baby “Ligaya” which means happy. She didn’t even both coming up with boy names. It’s like she already knew that we were having a girl even though we wouldn’t find out for another month. I started asking several work friends for advice with pregnancy and traveling up to 80%. Most people told me to wait until after year-end reviews in March, after my first trimester. At 9 weeks, we had our first ultrasound on January 16th and heard a strong heartbeat!  On February 6th, (when I was 13 weeks pregnant,) we went in for the nuchal translucency ultrasound and additional prenatal testing.  While everything looked great and no signs of Down’s Syndrome, I waited until 20 weeks to say anything on Facebook.  I announced my pregnancy with a picture of some of my first baby purchases, a Pickles n’ Roses jumper and “Are You Kitten Me?” Freshly Picked moccasins.

When we went to Paris March 4th-13th, and with all the croissants and delicious food, I started to show! (Can you tell in this photo? I’m about 16 weeks along, too.)   On March 20th, we finally got the results of the cell free DNA test and they were negative! It also told us that we’re having a girl!!! Mr F and I immediately agreed upon a name too.    At week 21, April 13th, we got a 3D ultrasound and it was amazing to see our baby’s face!  She was kicking and wiggling for the tech because I had a doughnut beforehand and the tech said the sugar made her dance! The tech kept saying, “thank you, baby”, when she did hold still for measurements and confirmation of all her organs, length of femur, nasal bone, and looking at the 4 chambers of her heart.  This was also the week that I really felt kicking on a daily basis, and Mr. F felt it, too. I wonder if the cats notice when they sleep next to my belly at night.  At this point, I started having some issues sleeping so I really enjoyed getting a Snoogle pregnancy pillow to help me sleep on my left side.

Around 28 weeks pregnant, the first weekend in June, we took a mini babymoon to Langley, Whidbey Island  and stayed in a relaxing AirBnB across the street from the Inn at Langley.  We had amazing food including the tasting menu at the Inn.  The service was phenomenal and almost every staff member told me about their favorite pregnancy memory, or their toddler! After the babymoon, I got my results back from the glucose test and it was elevated so I had to go back for 3 hour glucose tolerance test, which fortunately came back negative! In June, we also had maternity photos  with Erin Schedler, our wedding photographer,   with pictures on the roof of our house,  by the BUMP sign down the street, my family,  and on the beach, too! My first baby shower was in mid June hosted by my matron of honor, Mandy, and it was so sweet.  I especially loved the pink champagne cake and the chocolate party favors. Mandy gave us the changing pad and cover at the baby shower. We got the SNOO bassinet in early May, the changing table from Tirto in mid June, and the nursing chair mid July. I cashed in points through work for the Chicco KeyFit30 car seat, which arrived early April, and I have a month’s supply of Honest diapers in sizes 1-3, so we are ready!

This month, I’m weeks 32-35 along, and I’m really noticing my pelvis and it’s getting harder to sit for long periods of time. Since I travel so much for work, up and down the West Coast, I got a doctor’s note at 33 weeks to stop flying. I’m grateful that my work has found more administrative tasks for me to do at home.

We also recently met the neighbors behind our house and they have a three month old baby boy. Our babies will be so close in age and will be able to go to kindergarten together at the elementary school, half a block away! Mr F’s parents also came to visit from St. Louis, this month!  We spent nearly every day for a week swimming! This last weekend, my family threw me a baby shower at the family farm in Stanwood,  and the decorations were so adorable.  I really loved all the food,  especially the 6 different kinds of Gothberg Farms goat cheese with olives, dried cherries and mango! (My sister’s mother-in-law makes the most amazing cheese!)  I also wore my mom’s maternity dress that I remember her wearing with my youngest sister! My mother in law made our baby a lovely horse print, which we nicknamed the “Momtisse”,  for the baby’s nursery too! Everyone was so generous. I’m so thankful our baby will be so well loved.

 

 

 

Our last morning in Paris

On Monday, we had a last lovely breakfast at our amazing five star hotel,  with one last cappuccino and helping of crepes, before climbing to the top of the Arc de Triomphe for a view of Paris. The 284 stairs were windy and since we were under a time crunch to get to the airport before noon,  we nearly ran up the stairs. Fortunately, we went when it opened so there were not too many tourists on the stairs, yet! While catching our breath, we enjoyed taking a few last photos with the Eiffel Tower.   I’m so glad it was a sunny morning! Plus, it was much easier going down the 284 steps!  Spring has definitely arrived in Paris and as our taxi pulled away from the hotel, we saw cherry blossoms on nearly every street.

 While waiting in security, Mr F and I noticed that the Charles de Gaulle airport ceiling looks like a wine barrel, or that it’s made with reclaimed wood. We didn’t spend much time in the airport and went straight to our gate. We were fortunate to have a direct flight from Paris to Seattle. It was 10 hours of movie time along with a little napping, reading and eating!

I can’t believe we’re already home. Customs was a breeze since we have Global Entry so it was like any other US flight with maybe a little extra walking. We also haven’t had to deal with any jet lag after our trip since we got in at 5pm and basically went to sleep early after checking on the kitties.

Lily and Lyra are also so happy we’re home.

 

Cats on the hot roof!

Every day in our new house is like a new discovery. In the last few days, we’ve let the cats on the roof, with supervision, and they’re so cautious and cute. 14362683_803822311962_4693677409695760545_o Tuesday, Lyra barely came up to the roof, while I was practicing yoga. Today, she was more adventurous! image Lulu also started realizing that this is one huge sunspot to lie in. image

Lily Thomas loves exploring new places. image She likes to check the perimeter 14372347_804199555962_4168767508608791681_o and scare me, by walking on the outside of the railing.

Hopefully, our kitties don’t miss us too much while we’re gone. My parents will check on them and my dad is making an awesome cat door into the garage closet to keep their food and litter contained, and away from the rest of the house!

While it’s still sunny like summer, and in the low 70s, it feels crisp, and more fall-like in Seattle. Our swim in the Sound today was brisk, but fortunately the wind wasn’t up. It may have been the last swim on the year, since we’re leaving for Italy tomorrow and when we return, the weather is likely to be colder and rainy.

Last night, a college friend of mine, took this awesome picture of Secret Beach, (our wedding beach, where we swim). I wish I had taken it, but I was biking back from happy hour in Ballard! 14352179_804055300052_8520016624036439993_o (Photo by Kirsten Rue)

Good bye for now, Seattle and ciao, Italia!

Our new house and neighborhood!

I’ve been meaning to post our exciting news for more than a week now! We closed on our new house, August 31st and officially moved in the next day! Our wonderful real estate broker, Jeff Stegelman, gave us a fantastic welcome home present when we got our keys too. 14192779_801614616202_7604192074068755785_n Of course, we were so excited that we started moving immediately!  14114851_801231484002_8661578154322334531_o  By the end of the day, we had all our paintings, fragile boxes, and our cats. Luckily, our new mattress had arrived, so we didn’t have to sleep on the floor. 14212111_801700618852_666590438002579445_n On September 1st, the movers brought our heavy furniture and the remainder of our boxes. 14141855_801716641742_2176219268717903231_n Our adventurous kitty, Lily, has enjoyed finding new hiding spots and checking out all the rooms and sun spots. 14264078_803160094052_3422694360935904502_n 14183797_802566832952_3319162069535543274_n Lyra is a little more cautious but loves looking out the windows. 14317502_803160089062_4097689655652241671_n We unpacked all our boxes within a few days of moving in and our house is really coming together! We’ve really enjoyed our new rooftop. 14233266_802578843882_6919173865163836833_n We just got a new hammock for two, as well! 14322391_803160143952_6465231377998772023_n Lily even tested it out with us! 14264971_803160138962_8397450657141136394_n

Some of our other favorite features are the quiet neighborhood, fantastic water views, 14264187_803295682332_2636525481731716283_n  and the amazing kitchen. 14225405_802626538302_5066006294840173706_n Mr. F made my favorite the other night, grilled lamb, salad with creamy Moroccan preserved lemon vinaigrette and Charles Smith Wine, the boy! 14231305_803354579302_3038526232319987640_o We’re looking forward to getting to know our neighborhood more and enjoying the sunsets from our roof. We’ve definitely become homebodies and love spending all our time at home now, especially since the weather trend is more fall-like. We went swimming in the Sound today and it was fierce. It was a clear day and almost 70 degrees, but it was breezy and the water felt a lot colder than a few weeks ago. Even when we went on Saturday, the season has already changed and it was harder to warm up on the beach. image Luckily, we also enjoy long walks around the North Beach/Blue Ridge neighborhood, and we walked all the way to Carkeek Park and back over the weekend (almost 9 miles). There’s a neat trailhead through Blue Ridge to this amazing park. I highly recommend, to everyone in Seattle, to discover new trails through Carkeek! image It’s phenomenal to experience the Seattle on a sunny day, especially on the Sound! image

Christmas catch up

It’s amazing that it’s already 2016 and that it’s been a few weeks since Christmas. We just took the Christmas tree down yesterday and the cats were sad to lose their new hiding spot. image We celebrated Christmas day at my parents house, image along with my grandparents, Aunt, Uncle and cousin. Mr. F and I saw Star Wars the weekend after Christmas and it was as amazing as we hoped!  image I love how there were so many tie ins to the original episodes! image Later that weekend, we noticed that one of our favorite neighborhood restaurants, Revel, had an awesome Darth Vader painting on the wall too! image

I’m loving my new yoga pants that I got for Christmas from my sisters image and in laws. image Three days after Christmas, we left on vacation to Maui!!! I can’t wait to tell you more in my next posts!

September snapshots: sunflowers, babies, Kiki’s bachelorette and lots of traveling

image IMG_0185Over Labor Day Weekend, it poured and we went to Andrew Will’s annual release party on Vashon Island. The winery was gorgeous with tons of flowers  IMG_0188 IMG_0189and we took the ferry IMG_0196 so we had fun with our friends. IMG_0198 imageOur own garden is exploding with sunflowers too! 10408181_695667490092_7597441143140127634_n 10647224_695667574922_5230244530442096080_n10603447_694375569112_3483899481843900469_n

10653463_694084477462_8843902207267236146_nAndrea had her baby at the end of August and we finally got to meet baby Mike the first week of September. 10610602_694084557302_6128556112483951348_nI’m an Auntie Em!

My sister, Katie had her 25th birthday. 10702042_694826929582_6959658975107216982_n  906673_10204862184980187_3029196566481842522_oIt was nice to see all my family! The first week of September, I made sure to spend alot of time with Mr F swimming 10603345_694083923572_3076230312264098272_n10672334_694083873672_2396072753015978470_nand eating great food10600543_694083798822_722717522961193091_nbefore my busy traveling month.

In the last three weeks, I’ve been in Idaho Falls, 10574388_693818829822_1449199842325247606_nMilwaukee,10698482_695077432572_3208152827447816096_n Chicago, and Hawaii! 10624984_695299422702_2157281110896049662_nIn Chicago, last week, I got to see my cousin, Katy’s baby. He was born on my sister, Janie’s birthday!10689884_10101033660807510_2039298939533346564_nMy sisters and I had dinner with my cousin, Brian and his girlfriend, Sammy. Plus, we celebrated my cousin, Kiki’s bachelorette party!!10703755_10101034275994670_6657360447379049930_n 10614287_695395969222_5800049556433190268_n1622238_10101034355769800_8148629975918823593_n  We went to one of my most favorite Chicago restaurants,10687107_695422820412_2645426119823376205_nPiccolo Sogno Due! I love their homemade pastas,10431482_10101035326733980_895617977443746282_n especially the ravioli.10615398_10152257530751020_5289538437823369889_n10616385_695473009832_2508832558907441823_n We also had a ton of fun dancing at several places on Hubbard!

I’ll post about Hawaii next!

Seattle in the summer is magical

In July, I traveled to Hawaii, Idaho Falls, St. Louis and Pittsburgh with nearly two weeks at home without travel. The day I got back from Hawaii, my college buddy, Beav was visiting so we meet Andrea at the Ballard Seafood Fest to see our favorite band, Vaudeville Etiquetteimageimage image image They are an awesome band to watch live and they hand out kazoos to join in the last song! imageimageThe flowers are popping in our neighborhood. We’ve been spending lots of time swimming in the Sound and sunning on our wedding beach. imageWe been to a lot of great restaurants too, including Bourbon and Bones for BBQ with our good friend, Beav! imageWhen I was flying through Salt Lake City to Idaho Falls I saw image the fires in Eastern Washington from the plane. Fortunately, Andrea’s husband is fighting them and they’re under control now. imageThe kitties loved me being home more in July and Lily was a frequent lap warmer.image One of my favorite views of Seattle is coming home from a work trip and seeing the mountains. image image La  Isla is another favorite Ballard restaurant especially the empanadillas at happy hour. Pono Ranch is another new favorite because they have a huge patio and fish tacos!image imageimageOf course, there’s also Little Woody’s for delicious burgers. There are two new burger places that opened this month that I’ll have to post about next.

In August, I’ve had work trips in Seattle, Fargo, Spokane and next week, I’ll return to Boise and St Louis. I’m looking forward to seeing Beav again and my in-laws! imageSeptember will be a travel heavy month too, with trips to Idaho Falls, Boise, Missoula, Chicago, Honolulu, Spokane, Chicago again but I’ll have the last week of September free!!!