Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Our Morning.

This was us about 9am this morning. Greg left in the moving truck. Eli and I headed to Charlotte to fly out. We made it fine to MN and Greg is still trucking along in the Appalachians last I talked to him. Baby girl just kicked and Eli is banging on the piano at my sisters getting ready for a central time zone nap.

I can't say goodbye yet. Too hard. We are just going to say we are on vacation. 


Monday, July 29, 2013

She's Good!

Baby girl made it just fine through this month of crazy, praise be. She is measuring normal. She's breech but that's not a concern yet (or ever really...it's okay if I end up with a csection, not ideal but I don't care as long as she's alive).

Grateful she's doing fine thus far. I was nervous during the ultrasound this morning, all the fear I hadn't had time to worry on sort of came at me. But she was fine and there was peace in seeing her sweet profile and hand waving to me.  I'm getting really excited to hold this baby girl!!


Sunday, July 28, 2013

Packing Tape.

We've gone through almost three things of packing tape.

Our lives are definitely out of the ordinary right now. It's all quite crazy. I can't believe we are moving in less than two days. Six years is a long time to be in one place. Sigh. The reality hasn't set, thankfully, but there have already been a few hard good-byes. Does anyone really like good-byes?

We have had some great times these last weeks being with friends. Eli especially has had a fun time being spoiled by Sidni and Dori and just hanging out often with all his friends. I think he has figured out something is happening, obviously with the boxes and changes around the house. But he's definitely had a few moments where you know he just isn't or can't process what's going on. Heck, I don't even know if I am!

We have been busy busy packing up our earthly belongings and figuring out details on this and that. The moving truck is half packed now and later today should be near fully packed, minus what we'll need in the next few days and/or what could melt in the truck. I guess our days of melting are coming to an end.

There is absolutely NO WAY we could do this without the help from our friends. We are going going to miss them so much! We are blessed. I am so grateful for all the love and help and care we've been shown. God's people just blow me out of the water at times.
I think we'll pack him along.
Baby girl appointment bright and early tomorrow so hopefully I'll post an update on her soon (gratefully she's been moving fairly consistently).


Thursday, July 25, 2013


On our SC bucket list was Shealy's. It a buffet-style restaurant in Batesburg-Leesville about 40 minutes from Cola. We were part of a church in BL for over a year (all during my pregnancy with Maelee and after) but we never got to go to Shealy's because, in sweet southern style it's closed on Sundays, the day we were usually there!

So went we did. And it was all southern (I had to have a friend explain some if the buffet offerings!) and all quite tasty. The best was the pulley bones. They don't have them on the buffet, you gotta know to ask for it (thus why you go with locals). Such good white meat fried chicken...I'm going to miss good chicken. I didn't love their BBQ because it's not tomato based so I would stick to chicken there. The place is huge and crazy well known. Totally worth a stop. Though to be fair to your waistline and arteries, I wouldn't frequent there often.

Also, don't bring a two-year old, feed him jello (and have someone else feed him more plus ice cream) and think you'll be able to have good conversation. It won't happen. He will just run around like a crazy child and you will wonder who he belongs to.

Some great folks here!
It looked much better before I had scarfed it all down but I forgot to take a before photo.

Pulley Bone. Bam.


Sunday, July 21, 2013

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Bin Buddies.

We are going to miss out on so many relationships here. Sigh. Watching Caleb and Eli together has been a joy, especially as they have been interacting more and more. They are super cute. We've been taking loads of adorable photos because they leave tomorrow for the beach and we won't see them until the night before we leave. Tear. I'm bummed to not get to see these two grow up together. But we hope and plan for fun visits in the years to come! No more beach trips, Ben and Sarah, come to the tundra instead!!

Packing with kids around means you really don't get much done.

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Pregnant and Moving.

One of the hardest things about this move is heading out when I'll be 28+ weeks pregnant. I have talked before about my love for my high-risk OBGYN and his practice. I appreciated him so much during the rollercoaster rainbow pregnancy with Eli and his birth. All of his staff are great and the practice is so efficiently run, I never wait more than five minutes in the waiting room. There has been a comfort this time around every time I go in for an appointment, a feeling of "I've done this before, I know what to expect". Plus it turned out well with them (we got an Eli!). I was planning for the exact same thing with this girl.

But even more weighty than leaving my doctor is not getting to share this baby girl with so many people here. So many folks that have been with us, walking closely with us on this journey. I would love nothing more than to have them see us bring home a healthy baby girl. I want to see their joy as I put our girl in their arms and thank them for their love and prayers and care. The friends here have been the ones to see us grieve daily and been the ones to walk with us through these years of our losses and our joys.

We'll get to share her with our family and a few friends in ND, of course, we are aware of that great blessing and joy. And we will get to share her via the internet with those here. I just wish I could give them the gift of being a part of this baby girl's arrival, too.

To those of you on this journey with us, thanks so much for loving us and our children so well. For those of you here, I do anticipate the day when our family comes back to visit and I can introduce you to our girl on earth.

And please be praying that she'll be born alive and healthy. It's going to be a stressful few months, full of transition. I found a few doctors (though none seem as great/experienced as my doc here!) and I have an appointment shortly after I arrive in Bismarck. I hope I can adequately explain our history, and how worried I may get as we draw closer to her due date. I'm trying to stay calm and not let my blood pressure skyrocket from stress! As long as she keeps moving so consistently, it should calm much of my anxiety over how she's doing with all this. And once we arrive in Bismarck, you know I'll be resting up!


Oh and with all this stress, all name discussions have come to a halt!

Sunday, July 14, 2013

Red, Yellow, Green.

This is really happening. We are really moving. I don't think the reality of this has set and probably won't for a long while. Here's the latest if you want mundane details.

We bought the (insanely expensive) plane tickets for Eli and I. Greg has reserved the (decently priced) moving truck. We will all depart July 30, barring any difficulties. After consulting with my doctor, he said flying or driving would be fine but that I'd need to get out every hour or so and walk around. With a 32-hour drive plus a two-year old, driving didn't seem the ideal choice. So a short, direct Charlotte to MN flight will do and Greg will pick us up in MN for the last leg of the trip to our new hometown.

Our house is officially on the market. We met with a realtor Wednesday and he was taking photos and putting it on MLS by Friday. Let's just say without the help of our friends on Thursday, that couldn't have happened! We will try keep the house in show-ready mode for the next weeks, but any prospective buyer will need to be warned we are in the process of moving. I hope our house sells quickly but the market here is far from great. It's much better than a few years ago but it's still not thriving. I think once it's sold, we will do a happy dance. It's a buyer's market here. Bismarck is definitely a seller's market. Guess we are opposite. Good thing we don't feel that life is all about piling up loads of money or having an extravagant house. And yay for some great in-laws!

Our spare room is the catch-all room, half full of furniture and boxes already. I'll also start one wall of our living room with completed boxes which will pile up slowly but surely. I will not lift more than Eli's weight, don't worry. Since we are moving into Greg's parents basement for the time being (hopefully just for a few months), packing is slightly complicated.  I have a three-part labeling system. I am packing for long-term storage, plus items we may need after baby arrives or in a few months (ie, winter clothes) plus the obvious items we'll need right away. Red, Yellow, Green (thanks for the color suggestion, Sidni!). Red for long-term storage (won't need until we get our new place), Yellow for in-between items to keep accessible, Green for needing now. Plus I added a little Green-Yellow category for baby items I for sure will need but not until we see this sweet girl.

Sidenote: the labeling part is by far my favorite. It feels so good to make labels and color code them and have all the boxes stacked up, labeled and organized by category. Happy sigh. It may be overkill but I'm convinced it'll help lessen the stress at some point.

All three of us have taken long naps yesterday and today, either the stress or the lack of sleep the week prior is hitting us. I have also started taking loads of photos for the "South Carolina" book I want to make soon. I know Eli is too young to get to remember much of his time here but I know if he has a book, he'll remember people and places better. 

Besides house and packing, we are going to try accomplish a few things on our bucket list. Yesterday we ate the best pimento cheese around (super yummy, thanks DiPrato's) and tried local grits (made in Columbia since 1902, but not super yummy). Hopefully we can check a few more things off our list in the next weeks as we try say good-bye. I caught Eli saying "uff-da" a few times last week. That about sums it up!


Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Changing Times.

A week ago I did not know we would be moving to Bismarck.

A year ago Eli couldn't walk or talk.

Four years ago I was about to become pregnant with Maelee.

It sure puts perspective on life when you realize how much can happen in a short amount of time... and how change is certain. Life will change. Drastically or not, it will change.

It's crazy all that is happening right now. Insane really. But it's welcome change. We've had great peace amongst the stress that we are doing what we are supposed to do. Granted some things are not enjoyable or welcome (ie, selling our house and hoping we come out in the black, finding out no insurance will take six-month pregnant me so we'll be forced to do COBRA and pay out-of-network costs for everything, starting those stupid, hard good-byes, etc). But overall we are ready and excited for this change.

If you are the praying sort, pray for all these crazy details. Or maybe that we wouldn't become crazy with them!


Also, isn't it crazy to think of Eli when he wasn't walking or talking? The kid is all over the place physically and verbally now! Kids, they do remarkable stuff in a year!

Look at this boy one year ago this week:


Monday, July 8, 2013

Two Weeks' Notice.

Here's some seriously newsy news for you.

We are moving.

We are moving back to the land of open prairies, endless skies, loads of european-decented white people, oil booms, insanely cold weather, knoephla soup, and family.

We are leaving dear friends, humidity, oceans and mountains and cities, the best fried chicken, gorgeous arrays of scenery, fun shopping, ample adventures and entertainment, getting to be outside most everyday, delicious fruit, variety of people and culture, laid-back life, and that feeling of being an outsider.

It has been our big picture plan for awhile to move closer to family, to build relationships in the years left with them. We knew our roots were not to be planted forever in South Carolina. Reminding ourselves of that is important because we do love it here. We came here after two years of marriage knowing no one, we bought a house without jobs or a plan besides Greg going to school, we knew nothing about southern culture, we bonded as a couple, we formed deep friendships, learned a ton, and we had our children, the sorrows and the joys here. We built our lives. It is not going to be easy to leave.

It's especially going to be hard doing it in such a short time! Greg will start a senior writer position with Kat Communications in Bismarck, North Dakota on August 6. That gives us a few weeks to pack, say good-bye, sell our house, and move ourselves across the country. Greg is excited to be doing writing and editing and proofing and creative things for this ad agency.

Because this is all so sudden, we will be taking over Greg's parents' basement and putting our belongings in storage for a few months, until we find a place and get adjusted. I'm excited to have help with Eli during the end of this pregnancy and for the help when baby girl arrives! Moving mid-pregnancy is NOT ideal, of course. Sadly my doctor and his practice are not willing to move with us. We are thrilled that we'll be there for the birth of our niece and for the gift our girl will get to grow up with a cousin so close in age in the same town.

There will be much processing for us in these next weeks and months to come and I plan to continue on with this here blog as an outlet for those thoughts. And of course, to share our family to those we won't get to see as often.

We also plan to visit South Carolina. Every winter.


Sunday, July 7, 2013

Sixty Years.

This week Greg's grandparents will be celebrating sixty years of marriage. Isn't that wonderful?! We are so grateful for our heritage and the amazing example they have been. Not too many get to enjoy having such solidly awesome parents, grandparents and great-grandparents. We count ourselves blessed!

The Mr. & Mrs. 7/9/53

A beauty and a stud!

I love this!
Thanks, Cassie, for sending me these pics!


Thursday, July 4, 2013


Our good friends had quite the bash today in celebration of independence day. I had candied bacon. It was tasty! I also ate loads and loads of other good food. I love holidays.

Check out the cake someone brought to the party that they bought at Bi-Lo (local grocery store):
You must, must say this with a southern accent.
Jeremy bought these for Eli. He didn't really keep them on, but how cute!

He did really like the sparklers and thankfully, no incidents!
I made safer "sparklers" treats.
It turned out to be quite the 4th of July! Though we decided against letting our kid stay awake for the fun fireworks and put him to bed with a noise machine on instead. Lame.