23 weeks

Sunday, December 23, 2012 Anya 0 Comments

Christmas in Germany = Too much food!

People around me pointed out that they could see my belly grow during our 2.5 weeks in Germany. I have a feeling that has to do with the constant eating over the holidays. Mini W must have gotten a lot of nutrients and calories through those holiday weeks. We were invited and went from one cake tasting to another. (At least that's how it feels). The flight over to Germany went well considering that I'm pregnant. I did wear my compression socks as advised by the doc and while it's not all that comfy - better safe than sorry. By the end of the travel it was a little difficult to still sit in the small seats but it went much better than expected.

People started to point out  my bump in Germany - it must have been obvious enough for people to feel confident to talk about it. 

I started waking up at night with my hips hurting. While I would change the side it just made me wake up with the other side hurting. As I have found out in the meantime - this also was temporary - probably about two weeks or so. 

Traditionally people like to eat goose during the Christmas holiday and we enjoyed a very fancy goose meal at the restaurant T├╝schenbroicher M├╝hle in the city of Wegberg with the goose being partitioned at the table. First time for G. to eat goose - he liked it. :) (Not to mention the Knoedel and red cabbage!)

Got to see some of my friends, family and spent a whole lot of time with my family at home. Time that I treasure and memories that will not be forgotten!


20/21 weeks

Saturday, December 01, 2012 Anya 0 Comments

It's a BOY!!!

Still catching up with the updates here as you might notice. (We are actually in week 28 at this point). We were so happy to confirm that we are having a boy during our 20 week ultrasound. Our little guy looked great according to the technician and didn't move around too much but rather stayed in his interesting Yoga pose. We were lucky to see him swallow amniotic fluid - so adorable!

And here are some of the latest ultrasound pictures from our 20 week appointment. Not sure that we'll have another ultrasound scheduled at the doctor's office if everything goes well, however we have an elective 3D/4D scheduled for February. 

Tons of books on hand and so little time - aaaah the preparation. He'll be here before we know it. :)


18 weeks

Wednesday, November 14, 2012 Anya 0 Comments

I'm so behind on updating these two-weekly pregnancy boards. Christmas and travel preparations got into the way and now there is a lot to catch up to. However now at 25 weeks I'm finally ready to post the 18 week update. For some of you this might be old news if you have seen me lately or heard from us in the meantime, however the plan is to catch up with the current status in the coming weeks - latest once I'm back home and find time.

Happy New Year to all of you. One of my obvious New Year's resolutions is to update my pregnancy boards on time. ;)


17 weeks

Wednesday, November 07, 2012 Anya 0 Comments

I apologize for the delay in updates - I'm doing my best to take a moment from my constant food obsession to take the time for the pregnancy storyboard. I am thinking about food while I'm typing this.

Anyhow, the 16 weeks ultrasound went well - everything is looking very good - decent amount of movement which is something they want to see at this point.

Luckily the 'low-lying' placenta has moved up and is no longer a concern. (Yeah!) Baby's heartbeat was 153 and all the measurements so far looked good. Next ultrasound at 20 weeks will be the anatomy scan.

My favorite past-time is looking through cookbooks or online recipes currently. I can't go shopping without eating first. That's a rule in general but during pregnancy it's even more important if you don't want to buy the whole store. Needless to say that there are regulations currently since our fridge is still out of commission and we are operating with a 'Mini-Fridge'. Yes, it's Thanksgiving week and no - we don't have a Plan B. :) I guess we'll either cook very small amounts (mini-turkey) or will have to go to a restaurant.

My daily walks are not so daily anymore and I seriously slowed down. I'm doing great about half-way through and then it seems to become a struggle once it's uphill. Still want to keep up the walking though. No movements at the 17 weeks mark really. Could see baby move like crazy during the ultrasound and didn't feel a thing. Placenta seems to be anterior - which maybe is an explanation. Excited for the next ultrasound!!!


14 weeks

Friday, October 26, 2012 Anya 1 Comments

Finally a little relief regarding this constant 'morning sickness'. Or maybe I'm just getting used to it? The fact that I can brush my teeth calmly again without the need to hurry makes me happy. Took the opportunity and got a professional cleaning today also. Energy is back somewhat - still getting tired around 8pm but I'm ok during the day now. Hoping that all of the 'sick-feeling' will disappear in the coming weeks. As long as I don't wait too long with food I seem to be ok now.

As some symptoms go other's arise. Welcome sudden nose-bleeds and headaches, stuffed sinuses. I didn't know that a warm shower can trigger a nose-bleed but now i know better.

That pregnancy body-pillow is already a life-saver. (The peppermint life saver's are also the real deal).
I was asked straight-up whether I was pregnant the other day -which I think is still brave but I guess I can't deny it much longer, especially wearing tight clothes. ;)

A man offered to get me a basket at the grocery store for the first time ever and I have to wonder whether this is related to the size of my stomach or maybe just a very nice person. I was really surprised but also in a hurry to get my quarter watermelon to the cash-out. Really need my watermelon - however with just a mini fridge at hand, that makes it a little difficult to store anything.

Greg and I chose a pregnancy themed pumpkin for this year's carving. I feel that we should have won the contest with the cuteness, but 'the white pumpkin won again'. ;) Note to Self: Definitely carve a white pumpkin next year, they always seem to win.

Happy Halloween!!!


12 weeks

Friday, October 26, 2012 Anya 0 Comments

Time flies! Especially when you are counting the weeks of your pregnancy. (I wonder whether I still say that towards the end of this pregnancy.)

Everything is moving along - I was hopeful that the nausea would have passed by week 12 but unfortunately that was not yet the case. In addition I got this interesting new symptom of lower back pain. I know, it's early  - but it seems like this was just temporary.

The highlight of week 12 was definitely the First Trimester NT Ultrasound screening. It's a scary appointment because they are taking measurements to assess the baby's risk of having Down syndrome or other chromosomal abnormalities. Baby's with abnormalities accumulate more liquid behind their neck during a certain time in pregnancy and the clear space behind the neck is measured. Everything looks great and the blood test came back with good results also.

'Mini' was very sleepy and didn't move at first at all. The tech started pushing around on my tummy to wake the baby up and there was some movement to get a better position for the measurements. The switched the view to show the blood flow and it was very interesting to see. Heartbeat was fast and strong just like the first time but it slowed down to 166 in the meantime.

Still too early to determine gender but we'll hopefully be able to find out soon.


8 weeks

Friday, October 12, 2012 Anya 0 Comments

Yes, it's been a while and this post is kind of late in time. Nevertheless it's a happy post. Pregnancy is a whole new adventure and it's still a little hard to comprehend that this is actually happening.
I had my heart set on trying to take pictures every week/every other week and write down a whole lot about the experience, however 'morning sickness' has kicked my butt the last couple of weeks and taking pictures all of a sudden was not a priority anymore. I'm glad to say that now at 13 weeks things seem to ease up a bit, even though I'm still gagging a whole lot. I guess I have enough energy to post the first pictures and that's a good thing.

The first OB visit was such a sweet day for us. It's hard that we had to wait for weeks for the first appointment. It's kind of nerve-racking to not know what is going on and whether everything is ok. Due to all my sympthoms it's not like I was doubting there was a baby in there, however it still is a big relief to see the little soul on screen for the first time.

We were surprised and in awe about the detail at 8 weeks. The heartbeat was a big highlight of course and puts the nerves at ease a little more. It was noted that my uterus is oddly shaped....not by the tech but the midwife. I guess she is not used to seeing a German uterus around here. ;)

I'll post the 12 weeks update this weekend also to catch up with all those days on the couch. More to come.



Del Mar Opening Day

Saturday, July 21, 2012 Anya 0 Comments

It's summer - it's hot - so what's shakin' in San Diego you might be thinking. That's right - it's horse racing season and nobody is happier about this than me. The Kentucky Derby started it off well this year, when I correctly predicted the winner "I'll have another' and won a few bucks. Too bad it didn't work out with the triple crown this year.

With all this excitement about horse racing, I had to check out opening day here in Del Mar this year. It's famous for the over-the-top hats (there is a competition) and just general kick-off of the season in Del Mar. The weather couldn't have been better, especially with those nice reserved seats right along the stretch run and with shade.

Learned something new too. It's funny, when you walk up to the window to place your bet, they have it down to a science. Something similar to 'Del Mar, Race 4, $5, WIN, #6' and so on. This is the precise sequence they want you to place your bets in. When I placed my Exacta bet, I was asked whether I want to 'box it', which I had never heard before. I decided to not cause a scene or be identified as the rookie and 'boxed it' without knowing what this meant. Turns out 'boxing it' won me $50, so that was lucky and I learned that the horses can arrive in both sequences. (Double-the-bet, too though)

Had to wear a hat of course and introduced my mum to horse racing in San Diego. She wanted a hat too! (Who wouldn't?). We had a great time, won some - lost some and wen't home really happy.

We found our hats at Kohl's the same morning and the lady at the cash register knew exactly what we were up to. "Opening Day?" - "Yes, last minute hats"....Probably not the first ones in the store for this - the selection was kind of small. Probably the left overs but we found our match.

The parking and general arriving and leaving was such a nightmare. They had the largest turn-out this year with 47339 people attending. A record for Del Mar Opening Day. (And you could tell...it was crowded and badly organized unfortunately) One of the horses hurt its leg during race 5 and had to be put down later which is sooo sad. I just read about it today, but I saw it leaving the track early. It was bizarre when one of the horses ran by without a jockey...(she had fallen off right at the starting gate and the horse finished without her). Everything is a little over the top -including the traffic and while I love horse racing and I love Del Mar -I'll probably skip opening day next year and go on a 'normal' weekend, when it's less of a pain in general. But we'll see, maybe I'll forget about this until then and wear my hat once again next year. Never say never.

The season just got kicked off and I might be back another time this year - we'll see how it goes. I also plan to visit the race track in Duesseldorf next time I'm home in Germany to see how it compares to Del Mar. Obviously it will be lacking weather-wise. ;)

California Love......


Deep Sea Fishing / Puerto Morelos, Mexico

Sunday, June 17, 2012 Anya 0 Comments

During the wedding weekend of our friends in late April we decided to try a Deep Sea Fishing trip. Never tried it before and I was a little anxious that I might get sea-sick. That has happened here and there but I have been mostly fine on earlier boat trips, however nothing compares to a rather small fishing boat on rather rough ocean waves. There was a discussion about visiting the ruins in Tulum instead but since they didn't offer the trip on Sundays we decided to join the group for the fishing trip instead. We both downed some motion sickness medicine right before we took off, however that might have been a little late for at least one of us. ;) The captain instructed us to stare at the horizon and don't go inside the boat should we have issues with sea sickness. (Ay Ay captain - I STARED at the horizon something fierce) So we took off...

It was a beautiful day (sun-screen needed and might not have it with me....yeish). The ocean just looked and smelled amazing - the boat was fast and somebody I know was lingering inside the boat's body.

The beer was cold and we girls had a great time. I decided to take it easy and stick with water though for my stomach's benefit. Didn't really know what to expect from the waves and decided to STARE at the horizon as much as possible. Not too many ladies took the fishing trip so we decided to stay strong. ;)

Soon after the first fish was caught. Happy times - quiet an experience I have to say and a lot of work for the crew and the one reeling it in. She did a great job.

My beloved husband had a severe case of sea sickness at this point and didn't enjoy the trip at all. It started with 'my stomach is really upset' and went downhill fast. He might have helped with the 'bait' and I felt really really bad for him. Hard to believe he had to pay money for this horrible experience.

He wasn't feeling well we all were super amazed about catching this bad boy. (Mahi-Mahi) What a color - very unbelievable. Hard work for sure but what an event. 

We were able to pose with those two 'babies' and plans were made to eat our catch at the hotel restaurant the same evening. Hubby had to pass after his sea sickness adventure and only wanted to go to bed and drink some water. :( I met with the girls to eat our catch and what a great time we had. 

This is the 'After' picture. They grilled the fish to perfection. I had never had Mahi-Mahi before but really liked it. This is also the first time what I had something that fresh out of the ocean and caught when I was on board. Pretty amazing. Something to cross off the list I guess. 

If your stomach is up for it - the deep sea fishing trip is a nice adventure. If not, you might want to stick with the pyramids in Tulum or just stay at the hotel bar. ;)

Ahh, how nice it is to go through memories after the vacation/trip is over...good times.


Wedding in Puerto Morelos, Mexico

Saturday, June 02, 2012 Anya 0 Comments

Whew, we've been on the road for a while now and it's time to finally tell you about the beautiful wedding we attended in Puerto Morelos, Mexico in April of this year. While I have been lucky enough to have traveled Mexico quiet a bit before I have never been to its eastern coast. We flew into Cancun and took a shuttle to our resort south of Cancun, in Puerto Morelos. It's a tiny little town close to a big stretch of hotels along the coast.

The scenery is very different from the west coast and the word 'jungle' comes to mind. There is a lot of undeveloped land still available right at the ocean and the weather can only be described as too humid and too hot by someone who is spoiled by Southern California weather all year round. Most people from cold places would love the weather I'm sure. ;)

The Marina El Cid Hotel has access to a beautiful beach:

Aaah, enjoying umbrella drinks right at the water - freedom! ;) Both of us were so honored to be in the wedding. J. the bride chose a beautiful dress for us bridesmaids.

The wedding colors were really pretty - dark purple/gold. The flowers turned out gorgeous also:

I found my hair inspiration on Pinterest and it worked out great. My hair stylist highly recommended that I provide the Mexican stylist with a picture and mentioned to them that I want 'SIMPLE' in order to prevent a quinceanera-like hair nightmare. The girl did a great job and I'm glad I brought a picture.

The ceremony took place on the jetty - a very intimate and special moment with our dear friends:

One of my highlights was definitely the lit-up dance floor right on the beach. 'Disco Bolten' right in her element. I remember a full sprint through the beach sand in the dark once my eyes discovered this beauty of a dance floor. (Just can't resist the disco fever) ;)

Now, if this doesn't get you in a vacation mood I don't know what would. We took a deep-sea fishing trip the next day but that adventure deserves its own post. 


Cupcakes in Encinitas

Sunday, March 25, 2012 Anya 0 Comments

Finally got a chance to try Elizabethan Desserts and their cupcakes in Encinitas. I had read about this fabulous bakery but didn't get a chance to try them before. With basketball on TV this Sunday it was the perfect occasion for two girls to go and check out some cupcakes. We decided to buy extras for the boys and invade their basketball party with our cupcake tasting. (I don't think they minded, although they claimed it wasn't 'manly').

Here is a picture of those beautiful delicious divine cupcakes:

We tried 'Beeze Kneeze, 'The Mustachio', 'Boston Cream', 'Collin's Peanut Butter Wag' and 'Sunshine'. They boys liked the ones with peanut butter the most (Beeze Kneeze and Collin's Peanut Butter Wag), both of us girls preferred 'The Mustachio'. (Heavenly) I really thought I would prefer the Boston Cream Pie, since I love the original so much - but this wasn't as good as I had hoped. Oh well...The Mustachio made up for it. ;)

If you live in the area or if you visit - I highly recommend this for a Sunday dessert, especially if you plan to go to the Botanical Gardens in Encinitas. It's right around the corner, next to a nursery and hard to find if you don't know about it.

Living large (and sweet) in North County San Diego.


Lake Hodges Reservoir

Thursday, March 08, 2012 Anya 0 Comments

March is an interesting time in San Diego. Beautiful sunshine and warmth one day and a passing winter storm the next. Although the last few days have been a little chilly here and there, we are still so spoiled by the almost constant sunshine. I actually enjoy that it's not too hot and the breeze is so nice.

During one of those last short storms when it started to rain we actually ran through the house like hens. It's such a rare event, that we actually run around, close windows and look out to marvel at the rain. We both love the rain smell - maybe because it happens so seldom.

The last weekend was amazing weather-wise and we decided to hike around Lake Hodges in Escondido.

I've eyed the new pedestrian and bike bridge that can be seen from the highway for a while and we finally took the time to check out the lake and hiking trails.

It's the David Kreitzer Lake Hodges Bicycle Pedestrian Bridge which was opened in 2009.It's been in the works for a decade and is 990-foot long. It's known to be the longest stress-ribbon bridge in the world and cost the taxpayer $10.5 million dollars. It is constructed of steel, steel cable, concrete and precast concrete panels.

Due to the bridge the mountain bikers don't have to cross the highway any longer to get around the lake. It sounds like a lot of accidents have happened there in the past and it sure makes it convenient to cross the lake.

It was a very hot day - lot's of people mountain biking and fishing in the lake.

I really enjoy walking the trails. We just took the easy walk around the lake - but had to cross some water. The trail up the hill looks very challenging, certainly something for a cooler day. It's amazing how dramatically the climate changes when you move inland in San Diego. The sun was strong!!!

Walking around gave me a very eerie feeling since Chelsea King was murdered about exactly two years ago when running around the lake. A very sad reminder that women in modern day society can't exercise alone and even more sad considering that it could have been prevented through multiple channels. I wasn't able to locate her memorial but believe it's on the other side of the lake.

People share the trails with horses and bikers, but it seems to be mostly for bikers really. Not just once did somebody fly by and it seems rather stressful and dangerous to walk around these trials with so many bikers around. We'll certainly be back to check out the rest of the trails and the dam. All in all a beautiful day at the lake and finally a chance for me to use my camera again.