Google+ The Duda Homestead: 2012

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Pregnancy Dreams : Issue 1

I decided my pregnancy induced, crazy vivid dreams were entertaining enough (at least to me) to start writing down. Before pregnancy, I would dream but they'd usually fade right away and I wouldn't remember them. Now, I remember every detail in the morning and they have gotten down right weird at times. Watching Revolution and Supernatural shortly before bed probably doesn't help.

Since I decided to write this down later in the day, I have forgotten all of the tiny details, but it was weird nonetheless.

Dream number one:
I was sitting on our couch watching TV and had a glass in my hand that was full of Bailey's, but I'd drank half of it. Then Nick walks in the room and seeing him flashed me back to reality and I flipped out. "Oh my God! What am I doing? I'm pregnant!" and so on. I believe it also involved me immediately getting online to research what half a glass of Bailey's would do. I woke up stressed out and very thankful that it was a dream! As I do with just about all of them.

Dream number two: This one is really fuzzy, but was so stressful and weird. We were somewhere (which looked somewhat like the Sons of Anarchy clubhouse) and were being held hostage.

Dream number one: 
We were at a town home for a party of some kind. And it was one of those dreams where no one looked like themselves. Like I was me, but didn't look like me. Nick was Nick, but looked nothing like him. Strange. And there was a neighbor that was out in his back yard dancing and was either actually a monster or just dressed like one. He sort of looked like the Maenad from True Blood. Then all of a sudden, one of the guys at the party got mad at him and ran towards him, leading to a tackle. Took him out right at the knees. Then of course the crazy neighbor started fighting back. It ended up in the garage of the town house (may have been ours in the dream) and I ended up calling 911 because I thought they were going to kill each other. The dispatcher sounded very uninterested and couldn't understand what I was saying. Eventually they just stopped and the Maenad dude ran back home....sooo weird.

Dream number two:
There was a woman who I apparently knew and she was very pregnant. I guess I'd signed up to be her midwife and deliver her baby at home. Through the whole dream I knew what I was doing and she was happy with me. Then when she went into labor, I suddenly knew nothing and the woman didn't want me around and called in another midwife at the last second who delivered her baby while she was on the floor of her bedroom. All I heard was one "push" from the midwife, a fairly quiet scream grouped with a sigh of relief from the mom, and then the baby cried. Suddenly Nick was there and we were just standing out in the hallway waiting. Again, strange. I don't remember ever seeing either of these women before.

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Pregnancy Brain

I would consider myself to be someone who has quite a bit of common sense. I'm a regular ol' MacGyver. I'd heard of "pregnancy brain" before and thought it had more to do with being overwhelmed. Overwhelmed = forgetting things. It happens to the best of us, pregnant or not. But boy was I wrong...hormones it is! Not to mention the clumsiness of being a little off kilter once you start showing (due to your center of gravity changing). Most days I find it entertaining and think everyone should feel the freedom to laugh at themselves. Occasionally though, you just feel like an idiot who's completely lost her mind and you break down. Also hormones, balled up with some frustration. And then I eat something sweet, take a nap, and all is well again!

So here's a running list of my pregnancy brain moments (encouraged by my friend, Diana over at The Wolf Den). This list (and whole blog) is a way for us to look back at all of these great memories and smile. It's also a way to entertain you and make all of the pregnant ladies who are losing their minds feel a bit better.

  • There have been several cases of me thinking things have happened when they didn't. For example, I could have sworn that the hubs set up an appointment with a daycare for a tour so I added it to the calendar. This was followed by him asking me if I'd talked to them to set the appointment. I could have sworn he did! Being the awesome husband that he is, he set an appointment right away so we could get it on the calendar for real. Maybe I'm not losing my mind...maybe I am just improving my ESP. Mom's need that right?
  • Nick came home to me getting dinner ready and asked what was burning. Confidently, I say "Oh it must just be the crumbs in the bottom of the toaster oven" and I go about my business. Then I turn around to see the pan of cut up potatoes that I thought were in the oven. So the burning smell was a result of those crumbs being the only things cooking. Oy!
  • We showed up to a doctor appointment a day early (this one triggered and "I can't stand feeling like an idiot" breakdown). 
  • I could have sworn my evaluation at work was a day earlier than it was originally scheduled for. Better early than late though! 
  • Sticky notes are my new best friend. My students ask me for something that I say I will get for them the next day (usually some type of tutorial or photo that needs printing) and then the next day it takes me awhile to remember what they heck they were talking about. Poor things. Sticky notes have fixed that problem! 
  • I run into door jams and trip over my own feet all of the time! This has gotten better as I'm adjusting, but at first (around 12-14 weeks) I was a total klutz. 
I'll add more as they happen. It may not seem that bad, but I am not used to being an airhead. More has happened I'm sure, but these are the ones that stick out at the moment. I am going to keep better track if for nothing else than my own amusement. 

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Construction Progress - Before & After

I finally got around to putting together some before and after pictures of all of the work on the house. I somewhat regret not taking pictures before the demo, but just picture a very outdated, wallpapered space. If you'd like the details on the remodel, see this post. You can click to make the photos larger :)

Demo time!
(Forgive the bad quality, they were taken on the iPod)

Now for the beautiful before and afters :) I can't wait to post the "painted" and "decorated" and "holy cow, we're all done" pictures! And a BIG thank you goes out to my mom for coming over help help Nick prime the new drywall! Painting is usually my thing, but it all falls on Nick now!



Reading Nook


Our Room

The opposite side of our room.
My office!

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

15 Weeks!

As of Saturday the 17th, we hit the 15 week mark. We see the the doctor today so hopefully she will tell us when we can set the next ultrasound appointment and find out the gender!
As far as pregnancy goes, it has definitely gotten more comfortable. I sleep through the night better and rarely feel nauseous. I started feeling little flutters now and then which is very exciting!(TMI alert: I know they aren't gas...I'm a cheese-lovin' lactose-intolerant). Since I gained my energy back and the nausea left, I started doing squats and lifting (light) weights to keep myself strong and as in shape as I can. I also bought a prenatal Pilate's DVD that I'm excited to start using. The abhorrence to vegetables seems to be fading. Overall, they're right when they say the 2nd trimester is the best!

The only thing I struggle with now is feeling like a side-show at times. I am a pretty shy, reserved person and have never liked extra attention so that has been difficult. In fact, half of the reason I blog and post pictures on facebook is so I don't have to tell the stories and be stared at in person. I guess I figure you will see and read things and that will help. I hope that doesn't come off as rude...but who likes being stared at? I'm sure all of the pregnant ladies know exactly what I am talking about. Does it mean I don't want you to ask me questions and talk about the baby? No of course not. But it does mean that I'd rather not be treated like a fragile little zoo animal. Please and thank you :)

Monday, November 12, 2012

Announcing Baby Duda!

It's been driving us both crazy to keep it a secret, but we are extremely excited to announce that we are expecting! We're due May 11th, only a few weeks before my school lets out for summer, which is exactly how we hoped we could plan it. The house is nearing completion and we have winter break and spring break to put on the finishing touches, plus all of the time in between. It's my goal to be finished by the end of spring break (mid-late March) so we can relax for a month or two and I can go into full nesting mode!

Our announcement photo - Expecting our little pumpkin :)

I was fairly lucky with my first trimester. I was nauseous the majority of the time, but never actually "got sick." I was pretty lazy and tired (and still struggle with focusing now and then). I suddenly started LOVING orange juice more than ever and began hating broccoli and most veggies. I was a huge veggie fan before so that was a strange adjustment. I'll still force myself to eat them, but it isn't easy when you already feel kind of junky. There were only a few times where I didn't have much of an appetite, so I'm grateful for that. I do suddenly love corn, carrots, and celery with peanut butter (hmm...all things sweet).

As far as sudden cravings, I was violently craving a strawberry shake one night but wouldn't let Nick go out to get me one (he offered!) because lactose-intolerance seems to have gotten more sensitive with the baby, and I'm avoiding dyes that I'm sure would be in a shake. So instead I bought organic frozen strawberries to blend with vanilla soymilk (my mom's idea!) and organic strawberry pop tarts, along with a Naked strawberry-banana smoothie. It's helped a LOT to curb my unhealthy cravings. My onion/garlic (technically Allium) allergy has gotten more sensitive, too. If Nick eats salsa and leaves the bowl within 6 feet of me, it gives me a headache. It was never that bad, and I could eat salsa and be ok. Not anymore! Overall, I'm after sweet stuff more, whereas before I was a big veggie fan and never really wanted sweets...except donuts. I always want donuts.

Just before 11 weeks <3 We have a very squirmy baby!

Now, into my second trimester, I have noticed myself losing my balance which is really pretty hysterical to me so far. I also go through ditzy phases (pregnancy brain), which is pretty funny to both of us. I am starting to get my energy back (yay!) and the nausea is gone (BIG yay!). I did have a 24 hour headache which was no fun, but those have stayed away for the most part. I am officially starting to show (at 13.5 weeks as I type this) and just told one of my administrators! I have been trying to hide it with jackets and ruffles but my students totally saw my tummy yesterday so I figured it's time. Everyone else will found out over the next week with the announcements we're sending out and of course on facebook :) Apparently it's "weird" to send out announcements...I love you all but I'd much rather do this and send you a picture than call every single person and I know most people don't love finding out big news on facebook. So there's my solution! I'm really hoping our Christmas cards will include a gender announcement! I hit 20 weeks right before Christmas so I'm hoping we can find out a bit earlier. Our next appointment is Nov. 21st, so we'll see what the doctor says!

In the future nursery :)
Nick has been great already with understanding how I'm feeling and doing even more around the house. The litter box is all his responsibility now! Aww shucks...I sure do miss it :-P I bought him this book and he seems to really enjoy it, as do I. For anyone who knows or is an expectant father, it's super informative while keeping it funny and not-too-mushy.

I've been reading a few books, all fantastic so far: The Mayo Clinic Guide To A Healthy Pregnancy, Babyproofing Your Marriage, and Hypnobirthing. Yes, I said Hypnobirthing. It sounds odd, but it is a wonderful, medically backed book (written by a doctor) that thousands of women have used to have comfortable, drug and intervention free births, and we are doing all we can to go down that path. The research is there and the concepts make a ton of sense. If you can't say anything nice, don't say anything at all please :)

We are very excited for everyone to finally know! It's hard to keep a secret this big and telling everyone makes it feel much more real! We just ask one thing...I have a good amount of energy now and feel great. No pity please! Pregnancy is fantastic and exciting and yes a little scary at times but I am loving it. I have nothing to do other than think and wait until the baby comes, so I am up for just about anything :)

Friday, November 9, 2012

Apple Cinnamon White Chocolate Cookies

I've been craving fall food like crazy (who hasn't?) and came up with the idea to alter my favorite cookie recipe (White Chocolate Cranberry cookies). My mom got the original recipe from my Aunt Julie, who I believe got it from Ocean Spray Craisins. They quickly became a favorite...I love just about anything with white chocolate in it. The cookies stay soft and fluffy and delicious, and in my opinion taste better as a little time goes on and the flavors blend.

  • 2C. Flour
  • 1tsp Baking Soda
  • 1/2tsp Salt
  • 1C. Brown Sugar
  • 2 Eggs
  • 2tsp Vanilla
  • 1C. White Chocolate Chips
  • 1C. Butter (Softened)
  • 3C. Oats (I've always used quick oats)
  • 1/2tsp. Cinnamon (heaping)...I'd add a bit more for more for these
  • 1/2C. Granulated Sugar
  • 1T Honey - I used pure maple syrup and it worked out great!
  • 1 medium-large apple, peeled and diced. I used a large Honeycrisp, and had extra.
  • Pumpkin Pie Spice (for topping)
  1. Preheat oven to 350
  2. Sift flour, baking soda, salt, & cinnamon into a medium bowl
  3. Stir in oats and set aside
  4. Beat butter and both sugars until light and fluffy
  5. Beat in eggs one at a time
  6. Add honey(or syrup) and vanilla
  7. Add flour mixture until well combined
  8. Stir in apple and white chocolate
  9. Roll into 1-2" balls and place on cookie sheet about 2" apart (I did 2" for nice big cookies!)
  10. Sprinkle tops with pumpkin pie spice or cinnamon
  11. Bake 9-11 minutes (since mine were larger, I did around 13 minutes)

Monday, October 29, 2012

THE Remodel

I've been behind with posting, but here is the current story of our remodel (with some photos of course to come later). I slacked on taking before before pictures, but I'm guessing we have some around here somewhere that I'll include when I can. Here's a list of what has and is happening: 

First of all, why?
Our house is awesome. We couldn't have found a better one, and not once have we had any "house envy" since we moved in...well other than the whole, "Hey look, their house isn't under construction" thing, but it's coming along! So why tear out the upstairs? The house was build in 1922 and is one solid home. However, when the upstairs was redone or converted from being an attic (we're thinking in the 60s), I am pretty sure it wasn't done up to code, even for then. 

The walls weren't really walls. I mean they were there, but I believe they were 1/4" drywall, whereas walls are normally 1/2". May not sound like much, but it is. We thought they were paneling before Nick started tearing them out because they flexed in some areas. Behind those walls (and ceiling) were pretty old insulation...well if there was insulation. We noticed some fast snow melt last winter on certain parts of the roof, so that was a MUCH needed upgrade. Also behind the walls was some interesting framing. Most of it was fine, but some wasn't spaced correctly and didn't make a whole lot of sense. Electrical was just plain scary. There were a couple of places with burn marks by electrical boxes and I don't believe anything was grounded. (Have I mentioned Nick did all this over the summer...the hottest summer we've had in a while, upstairs with no insulation? Talk about sweaty work). At first we didn't think we'd change a thing about the layout...but we took a few liberties while we could that we are super excited about! 

Right after our housewarming party (I'm pretty sure the day after), Nick starting tearing out the walls. We rented a dumpster (if you are in the area, Veolia is MUCH cheaper than WM) and starting fillin' her up! I will say, once Nick commits to something he gets it done. I was pretty amazed at the rapid change that took place from an upstairs needing updating to the bare bones. I helped where I could and to clean up as he went. Keegan even helped vacuuming with the shop vac and pulling out nails with a hammer and had a ton of fun with it!

As I mentioned earlier, some of the framing didn't make a whole lot of sense or wasn't sturdy. If I remember correctly, the problem for a couple of the walls was the spacing, which needed to be fixed for code and support of the upcoming drywall. Not only did Nick redo a couple of existing walls, he framed out a closet for me in our new room, and one for him! His closet was in the hallway before, so this is a big deal folks. The sizes are quite typical. His is the size of a normal coat closet, and mine takes up an entire wall (about 4 doors wide), but is a bit shorter than my old one because of the angle of the ceiling. It's ok though, I'll deal :-P He also framed out a new wall for our new "nook," which I am calling it because I don't have a better description at the moment. We had a small living space upstairs, but it didn't fit much beyond a small bookshelf and a couple of gliders. Now it is going to be a full on sitting area with a wall of bookshelves and seating surrounding a coffee table. Our goal here is a reading-focused cabin-esque board/card game area. 

Again, it was scary. Not only was it old, frayed, and not grounded, the more Nick dug into it, the more he realized that most of our house was on one breaker. So, not only did he rewire the entire upstairs, he has been slowly working to redo the entire house, while remapping it so the circuits make sense. Now, we have lighting and fan-rated boxes in the bedrooms, a light at the bottom of our stairs (where there wasn't one before) on a 3-way switch with the one in the hall upstairs, and outlets in all of the right places (including plugs for lights in the closets, which I am super excited about). The bathroom used to have sconces for lights, which looked cute, but stunk for applying make-up and actually seeing my hair before I left the house. I'm sure Nick had a hard time with it, too...ok probably not, but it will be nicer lighting now! He also installed a very nice exhaust fan in the bathroom by the shower (didn't have one of those before either).

I think it is safe to say that this was Nick's LEAST favorite part of the project. Because of the depth of our framing, fiberglass R30 wouldn't fit (well it would, but if it is compressed to squeeze in there, it isn't rated at R30 anymore). So, after lots of research, we bought LOTS of polystyrene rigid foam insulation (the foil faced sheets you may see in the store). It comes in 4x8' sheets, so Nick cut each individual piece to fit into the ceiling AND exterior walls. Of course, just one layer wouldn't do it, so he had to do 5. 5 in each space between joists. He still shudders when he sees it in the store. I don't know how he did it...I cut some and it made that squeaky nails-on-a-chalkboard sound that gives me the heebeejeebee's. He finally got a break with the last layer, that went on top of all of the joists and was able to go up in 4x8' sheets (sort of like drywall would). That was for the angled areas of the ceiling and the exterior walls. For the very top, where the ceiling is flat under the peak of the roof (aka more room) we put the fiberglass, R38. I cut lots of little pieces for the areas in the ext. walls right by the floor and put those in. Have I mentioned I hate fibgerglass? My arms were on fire, but it was all for the cause! Luckly, it doesn't seem to bother Nick, saying he did the bulk of it. 

We ended up buying our own drywall lift (it was $20 more than renting it for a week) and were determined we'd do it all ourselves. We redid the ceiling in my office (downstairs) and the hallway. We started getting some of the ceilings done upstairs (by the way...our ability to cut the spaces for electrical was pretty hilarious at first. Not sure what was wrong, but we got it by the 3rd or 4th time!). For the ceiling, we had to use 5/8" fire-rated drywall. It is HEAVY. My brother, Jimmy, ended up helping Nick get the rest upstairs. (Luckily the 1/2" stuff for the walls is pretty lightweight). Then, time went on and school and coaching got into full swing and we decided to hire out to finish the job. As of Thursday (10.25.12), the ceilings were all up and starting to be mudded. Today, the walls should be mostly up (eep!). IT'S LOOKING LIKE A REAL HOUSE, FOLKS!

The bathroom is my job, and I'm pretty excited about it. I'll be installing tile on the floor and in the shower. The cement board is down for the floor (covering asbestos tile...yay!) and ready to be tiled once the drywall is all done. I'm doing white octagon and dot tiles (fitting to the 20's) on the floor and haven't quite decided on the shower. I was thinking white subway tiles with a band of sea-glass tiles. Then, I'll be repainting our built in cabinet (this may not happen right away...but it will happen!) and redoing the brass and glass countertop that is currently on the cabinet (this is different from our vanity, which is nice). I'm thinking a wooden top. 

The Final Steps! - Cosmetics
With drywall going up, the end is in sight! Paint will go up first, without having to worry about any trim or flooring. I am pretty decided on colors already, of course :) Then we're on to flooring!

We are making our own hardwood floor and will save a bundle doing so. At first, we were going to do carpet in the rooms and wood in the hallway and nook. Then, we decided somewhere along the way to do do wood throughout. How do we make our own? We buy 4x8' sheets of nice birch plywood (not particle board) and rent a table saw and get a-slicing! We're going to use large-headed nails and have them show for a rustic feel. We're going to do wider planks (5 or 6") and white wash them. Again, going for a cottage/attic feel (it is a converted attic after all). We know we can't duplicate the 1.5" gorgeous planks that we have downstairs (well we could, but they cost about $18...each), so we're going for a look that won't appear that we're trying to match what we can't.  This is the look I have in mind for the floors, with maybe a bit more grain showing through. Now that I look at it, that's the wall color I was thinking, too:

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...