A Babymoon of Sorts + Changed Church Responsibilities {May in a Sentence a Day}

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If you’re new around these parts, this monthly series is an exercise in brevity as I try (sometimes not very hard) to summarize each day of our month in one sentence. (Also, I’ve been taking a picture of my daughter every day since she was born, and this is a GREAT place for me to share several of those!). Although I’ve almost always included the photo at the top of its corresponding day, the daily captions of what we did and the photos often do not match. (Just to clarify!)

Thanks to the wonderful Rebecca Jo for the post idea!
When she’s naughty, it’s almost always accidental, as was the case here. (Poor thing was caught explaining that markers are not for skin over and over again to her favorite stuffed animal Polka Dot.)

Tuesday 5/1 – Had a super busy morning, as we had a lot of errands to run to get ready for our financial appointment the next day AND grocery shopping to do. Spent the evening helping Matt get ready for his last Pack Meeting as Cub Scoutmaster, going to my exercise class, and basking in the happiness that comes from getting a super unexpected (and very much desired) gift—in this case, a new grill from Matt’s boss (something we’ve been wanting forever, and that was even on my 101 in 1001 list of things to get!).

Oops—almost forgot to take a picture on this day! Better (really) late (at night) than never.

Wednesday 5/2 – Matt’s last night running Pack Meeting for Scouts! There are parts of being a Cub Scoutmaster that he’ll miss for sure, but we definitely won’t miss the stress of planning for these meetings!

Thursday 5/3 – This was a hard and exhausting day. I know lots of women have much worse pregnancies than I do, but some days, the hormones and the extra weight to heft around and the exhaustion just get to me. I’d meant to go to the temple this night, but I put it off for another week, hoping I’d be in a better state of mind the following Thursday.

Friday 5/4 – After Matt got off work, we drove down to Bountiful to go to the wedding reception of one of my friends since childhood. Even though we had to leave earlier than I would have liked (so we could make the drive back home before it got *too* late), I still had so much fun seeing many of my lifelong bffs there, including one I won’t see for several years probably, as she and her family are soon moving to Texas. There’s just something about being around people who have seen you during your most awkward times and who still love you that just feels so great!

Photo courtesy of @_mstephenson

Saturday 5/5 – I went to a baby shower for Matt’s coworker, who’s due a week after me. Coincidentally, there were actually 4 of us there at the shower who were all due within about 10 days of each other, which was fun. It definitely gave us lots to talk about! We tried to take it easy the rest of the day, as both Matt and Raven were sick (seriously…this will never end…).

Sunday 5/6 – A really busy day! We got a sub to cover our Primary class so we could attend the baby blessing of Matt’s boss’s boy, and then we went immediately from the luncheon after that to my in-laws’ house to celebrate my mother-in-law’s birthday with a big dinner. A really fun day!

Monday 5/7 – Our 7th anniversary! We literally did nothing to celebrate as we’d already celebrated by going on an extended date a little over a week before (and Raven and Matt were still a bit sick, so we didn’t feel like doing much anyway!).

Tuesday 5/8 – Raven and Matt were both still fighting sickness, but Matt still went to work. Raven and I stayed close to home most of the day (other than a little evening walk), and luckily she took a gloriously long nap in the afternoon, which was much needed for both of us! (Also, I went to my hip hop class like usual at night, and it was the first time I felt like my body was starting to rebel a bit from the movement and I had to really cut back. Here’s hoping I can at least keep exercising until I’m 35 weeks along!)

Wednesday 5/9 – Since Matt no longer will have Scout stuff on Wednesday nights, I took advantage of him being home and went to my boxing/bags class. That class always kicks my butt, pregnant or not!

Thursday 5/10 – Got rained out of the park trip Raven and I had planned in the morning (which super bummed her out), but luckily she was able to go later with Daddy while I snuck away for a quick trip to the temple.

Friday 5/11 – Spent the night making our Mother’s Day presents–these DIY concrete vases that I’d seen in the Martha Stewart Living magazine that I somehow got brave enough to try. (And while they didn’t turn out like the picture in the magazine, they still had a cool rustic look to them!). I *might* post a tutorial on how we did it, though the pictures I got for it aren’t great.

Saturday 5/12 – Matt went to the temple in the morning and then as soon as he got back, we all went to check out a local rock and mineral show. In spite of the fact that my stress level was constantly shooting up (as Raven wanted to pick up EVERYTHING, and I was in constant fear of her smashing or dropping things on accident), we had a good time. Always nice to do something a little different.

Sunday 5/13 – Mother’s Day! We had a very full day spent going to church and driving down to visit both of our families after (over a Dutch oven chicken lunch with mine and a later dinner of sandwiches and salad with Matt’s at his grandma’s place). You know it was a packed day of way too much goodness when we didn’t get home until 11 at night!

Monday 5/14 – Had a bit of a “recovery” day after such excitement the day before (meaning: we stuck to the schedule religiously). We did a little vacation prep for St. George later this week by cleaning out the car, and we also got some yardwork done, including planting some vegetable seeds straight outside and then putting in a whole bunch of daylilies we’d transplanted from my mom’s garden. I also took dinner into a family in our neighborhood who’s going through a tough time right now, which meant that our dinner was especially tasty too (as I always try a little harder when cooking for other people, ha ha).

Tuesday 5/15 – Picked up some things from the store to get ready for our vacation to St. George with my mom and stepdad the next day, but that was about all I did to prepare for it early (oh, and I made a list of all the food we needed to pack for meals and snacks). Despite feeling a distinct lack of energy and motivation to do much this day, I did, at least, make it to my hip hop class in the evening (which seemed abnormally hard—as this pregnancy goes on, that class just gets more and more difficult for me).

Feelin’ sick but still up for playing games with Grandma

Wednesday 5/16 – Vacation time! We spent the morning packing up the car and then started the 5+ hour drive to Southern Utah around 11. It became apparent pretty immediately that Raven was not feeling well, but we were hoping it would pass and gave her some Tylenol, which put her to sleep. After we stopped in Nephi for burgers and fries, it became apparent over the next hour that she very likely had an ear infection, so we ended up stopping at a clinic in Parowan (small town basically in the middle of nowhere) and luckily caught a doctor there right before he was about to leave. Sure enough, she had an ear infection, so we stopped by the one pharmacy in town to get some antibiotics and gave her a dose right away. Because she was feeling so lousy, we took it really easy once we got to the condo.

Out on the deck at the condo, looking for wild bunnies with Dad and Grandma

Thursday 5/17 – Raven woke up at 6:40 (same time as I did, intending to start my morning routine) and was obviously feeling quite a bit better already, so I got her dressed and the two of us enjoyed some quiet time outside together, looking for wild bunnies and playing on the condo’s playground. Later, my mom treated Raven and me to pedicures (something I haven’t done since the last time I was in  St. George with her, coincidentally, which was around 5 years ago). Raven’s only ever had me paint her nails (but totally loves it every time I do), so I wasn’t too surprised to see that she was super good at the salon—she held really still the whole time and talked about her pretty toes for the rest of the vacation. After pedicures, Matt took her back to the condo for a nap while my mom and I did a little shopping/browsing together.

Friday 5/18 – Day 3 in St. George. We all went out to a place called Bishop’s for breakfast, which was followed up by my mom taking Raven so Matt and I could go to the St. George temple together. We’d been promising Raven we’d go swimming since the beginning of the week, so we finally made that happen. She’s got a healthy fear of water, but overall, she totally loved being out in the pool, even if she did favor being in the shallowest part most of the time (not that I could blame her).

Saturday 5/19 – We were going to do a little hiking/walking in Snow Canyon in the morning after checking out a local farmer’s market, but everyone was already too hot from being out in the 90-degree heat that we nixed the idea and came back to the condo for an early lunch and long naps. Matt, Raven, and I then spent the evening hanging out with Matt’s brother and his family, who live down there. The one thing I felt like was missing from this vacation was that Raven didn’t have any other kids around to play with most of the time, so I was glad we were able to go over there so she could have ample time with cousins.

Sunday 5/20 – A lot of the day was spent in the 6-hour (ish) drive back from St. George (which included a pit spot to see the new temple in Cedar City), but we made some time to see my step-grandma halfway home, and we also got to check in with my in-laws too (which was good, since Raven kept asking when she’d get to see her other grandparents all week, since we almost always see both sets of grandparents every time we drive down south).

Monday 5/21 – Totally in vacation hangover mode—there were a million errands to run in the morning (including a trip to the grocery store, as we had planned it out pretty carefully before so that we wouldn’t have hardly any food go bad while we were gone, meaning that we hardly had any food in the house when we came back), and even though our house was a disaster area, I let myself lay down for a nap at the same time as Raven to recharge a bit. Later, I had a photo shoot going on, so we ate an early dinner and I headed off to that.

Tuesday 5/22 – A wasted day basically, as I was sick with a 24-hour bug. THE WORST.

Wednesday 5/23 – Luckily I was feeling a lot better this morning, so we were still able to make a play date we had planned with some neighbors in the morning, and I was able to make my exercise class in the evening (where my usual instructor was back from her maternity leave, which was fun, but challenging!).

Thursday 5/24 – A bit of an exhausting day, but we got all our vegetables and herbs and annuals bought and planted in our garden! (Let’s be honest—other than the shopping, Matt did a good 70% of the work.) Our yard is really starting to shape up nicely! Now if we can just win the war against all our weeds…

Friday 5/25 – Our house had been a disaster ever since we got back from vacation and I’d been too busy and/or sick and/or exhausted to do anything about it, so I made sure to set this morning aside (NO ERRANDS OR FUN STUFF, ha ha) until I’d at least gotten somewhat of a handle on the situation. Since housekeeping day is one of the few times when I let Raven watch a movie (she never watches t.v.), she didn’t mind too much. We also busted out our new grill for the first time since Matt got it from his bosses at work and enjoyed a pretty amazing dinner al fresco out on our back patio. Definitely thinking this should be a summer Friday night tradition!

Saturday 5/26 – Had a rough start to the morning, as I was dealing with some difficult news I’d heard the night before (about one of my former students passing away in a drowning accident right near where we live a week before his high school graduation). As with any tragedy that strikes close to home, I felt myself run through so many strong emotions, and there was a lot of crying and moments of reconciliation over the course of the day. But as I’ve also experienced while going through particularly painful things, there were also moments of intense gratitude for my faith, as well as for the blessings I’ve been given. Later in the day, my little family went to the park right by our house for a picnic and to go fly kites (as we’ve been planning to do all month), and despite the gravity of the thoughts that had been on my mind all day, I still felt a clarity of hope and love and appreciation that despite what may come, I had these beautiful moments with my family, I had the bedrock of the gospel of Jesus Christ, I had the sunshine and the breeze and the smell of lilacs in the air. A poignant reminder that “Pain is real, but so is hope.”

Sunday 5/27 – Drove down south to spend some much-needed time with our families (since my weekend had been rough, to say the least). On this day, we drove down right after church to have dinner with my folks then walked straight over to the cemetery to see my grandparents’ and cousin’s graves with much of my extended family. Raven had a lot of good cousin time, and once she was down in bed, Matt and I stayed up late playing Carcassone with my mom and sister.

Monday 5/28 – Since we spent the previous day with my family, we spent the actual holiday with Matt’s. We celebrated by going out to Temple Square and checking out the Church History Museum (we’d been planning on going to the Family History Discovery Center there, but it was closed), and then we all went to Chuck-a-Rama after, where I got to know my in-laws a lot better, as I was asking a lot of questions about their work experiences growing up.

Tuesday 5/29 – Since it had been awhile since I’d taken Raven to the library (since they stopped doing storytime for the summer), I decided it was high time we made a trip over there, where she happily spent almost an hour playing with blocks and coloring and looking for books, and I tried (unsuccessfully) to get into a YA book I’d heard some buzz about several months back.

Wednesday 5/30 – Spent the morning at the laundromat getting our gargantuan king-size comforter washed (and reassuring myself that it’s better to spend $10 at the laundromat to clean it than to spend $30 for it to be dry cleaned). Later in the evening after dinner, we took a family walk and ended up visiting with an older widow in our ward who Matt’s been assigned to minister to.

Dancing with Baby to “The Greatest SNOWman” soundtrack

Thursday 5/31 – Had a doctor’s appointment in the morning (my last “regular” checkup before we start doing weekly checks in two weeks). After spending all afternoon putting together the first family photo album I’ve been working on for several weeks, I was too pooped to think about dinner, so we picked up some food at McDonald’s before I went on a visit to a sister in the ward that I’ve been newly assigned to.

May was filled with a lot of ups and downs (coupled with a LOT of pregnancy hormones bouncing around), but overall, it was a month of family and gorgeous weather and memorable moments. Now it’s on to the last month as a family of 3! Eek!