my first “guest blogger” experience :)

if any of you haven’t already heard of Wee Ones Photography, you MUST check out the website and blog!  alisa is a long-time and dear family friend of mine and while she assists her daughter with wedding photography, she has also launched into the ADORABLE world of newborn photography!  ooohhh my goodness.  newborns are sweet and precious already, but her photoshoots take them to a whole new level!

alisa had also taken a few quick snapshots of Jack last year when he was about 6mos old:
jack016 jack030 jack027

this is what she shot during a 10minute, spontaneous “shoot” that we hadn’t even planned.  just imagine – and go LOOK AT – what she can do during a full photoshoot!

anyway… a couple months back, alisa asked me about possibly doing a few “guest blogger” posts on something(s) pertaining to my current season of a new mom with little(s).  i was shocked, humbled, excited, flattered and blessed!  if you’re interested in reading it, i wrote a 4-part series on tips and suggestions for creating a baby registry.  having been to quite a few showers, both wedding and baby, and then enjoying several of my own, i’ve developed ample thoughts and opinions on the topic.  ::wink::

creating a baby registry: introduction

creating a baby registry: part 1 – the thought process

creating  a baby registry: part 2 – what do i really need?

creating a baby registry: part 3 – my personal recommendations

alisa, thank you for the HONOR of contributing to your beautiful blog!  the privilege was truly all mine!

baby showers!

i just have to say first off that i find wedding and baby showers to be truly mind-blowing.  when i was planning my wedding, a friend gave me some excellent insight.  she said, “no one is as excited about your wedding as you are.  be ok with that.”  i found that to be wonderful perspective, not just on my wedding, but pretty much into many areas of my life.  it’s always a big deal when it’s happening to YOU – don’t expect people to have the same level of excitement and interest.  and if they do – consider it a wonderful blessing!  so when it comes to showers, i find myself so amazed that people would take time out of their full schedules and lives to celebrate something with me that i am very excited about (but that isn’t nearly AS exciting to them – although they graciously do share in my joy)!  and on top of that – they will BUY me stuff to help get me started on this new season!  who DOES that?!  seriously.  showers blow my mind.  they are such a neat picture of community coming together to help a new bride or a new mom as her life is about to change quite dramatically.

also?  i find showers to be SO MUCH FUN.  i mean, what could be better than getting together with a bunch of women i love, chatting it up over all things girly and eating yummy food?? 

when it came to baby showers for us/jack, i quickly realized that i am overwhelmingly blessed by so many people who desire to share in our joy and excitement.  my mom and i came to the conclusion that, if only for the sake of space/size, it would be best to have 2 separate showers.  my cousin becky and my sister in law jessica threw the first one on a friday night for gals/ladies closer to my age/season (singles, young marrieds/moms, etc).  we used this invitation from evite.com and then just piggy-backed off the colors to create a theme:

taking some of my current loves as a cue, they included a donut cake and iced tea in the food.  soooo delicious!

basically, we all just hung out, ate and chatted…

my dear friend courtney brought one of her newly adopted twins, hazel!  babies at a baby shower?  yes please!!!  isn’t she just the most precious little girl you’ve ever seen?!

my sisters-in-law even drove over from california for the weekend!!  i was SO happy to have them there!  aaaand this is the best pic i have of all 4 of them.  sorry. 😦

and of course, we opened presents!  apparently i am very animated and expressive while opening gifts… and make a lot of really weird faces…

it was a super fun, laid back shower and i loved being surrounded by so many wonderful friends (some of which drove nearly an hour to come!) and i look forward to sharing mommy-life with them all very soon!

the next morning was a shower that my mom threw for me.  we invited ladies from a more “mature” season of life to this shower (older/grown children, married children, plus my own aunts/grandmas, etc.).  and while they all have at least 20+ years of life on me, i LOVE being around this group of women.  they are all so much fun to talk with and hear from, and many of them have known me since i was very young, so it was all the more special to have them there! 

we (ok so i may have contributed to the shower planning a bit with my mom) used the theme and colors of jack’s nursery (airplanes + red/navy/tan) as the theme for this shower.  i love my mom’s style – simple & elegant with fun details!

we gave out peanuts and pretzels as favors (you know, like what you get when you fly on an airplane??)

aaand the faces continue…

it was extra special having my mom-in-law and HER mom (zach’s grandma) present as well!  they braved some crazy traffic to get here and we are so grateful they made it!! 

i was beyond blessed by both showers, the community of women i am surrounded by and the outpouring of their love and support.

it’s a BOY + birthday + pregnancy update

yes, friends and family, we are having a BOY!  i am thrilled to introduce you to our SON, Jack Boomsma:

(that’s his face on the left – looking right up at us!)
(and yes, Jack is the name we’ve chosen – not just an “in utero” name.  no middle name for this little guy in keeping with the Boomsma male tradition – neither zach nor his dad have a middle name)

birthday
so yeah, i had a birthday this past weekend.  i actually kept forgetting about it because i was just SO excited about finding out the gender a few days later.  zach was working on saturday so we decided to celebrate on tuesday when he was off.  kicked the morning off with the anatomical ultrasound.  everything looks great – limbs are all in present and accounted for, major organs look good, the heart is beating strong and everything is in the right place.  and yes, the tech confirmed the very clear presence of boy “parts.”  i say “confirmed” because, confession: i had had my regular OB check up on monday and during the quick ultrasound they did, my OB was 95% sure she saw those boy parts then.  so we actually were pretty sure it was a boy, but the appointment tuesday morning confirmed for sure. 🙂  after the appointment we promptly headed off to buy something gender specific, haha.  we got a set of Hurley onesies:

after that we drove into the heart of downtown LA to have lunch at Botegga Louie.  i’d been there once with a friend and have been itching to go back for awhile.  it’s on the more “up scale” side, which i thoroughly enjoyed.  you know, very classy, a little more “foodie,” where you don’t quite know what everything is on the menu, they offer you sparkling or flat water and ask if you have any allergies you’d like them to consider.  also?  i consider it a mark of a more upscale restaurant when the portion sizes AREN’T massive.  ah, it was perfect.  and um, the dessert case up front is AMAZING. 

i felt so fancy and spoiled.  and bonus – zach really liked it too! 

after lunch we came back to pasadena and got massages together.  i had found a groupon for a head/shoulder/back/arms/feet massage at a really good price.  i snagged 2 of them and saved them for our day out.  also? we both were in desperate need of haircuts.  me, because i was tired of having my hair sooo long.  it was actually starting to get in the way and get really annoying.  so i whacked 6″ off and LOVE IT.  zach, because he’s actually letting his hair grow out a bit and it really needed even-ing out and cleaning up.  groupon to the rescue again!  half off full salon cuts?  yes please!  here’s my new cut – as you can see, the change in length is really the only significant alteration:

(please note the lovely necklace my mom sent me as a bday gift – the back side is a scrabble tile!)

it was really fun to get some “pampering” TOGETHER doing things we both really enjoyed.  we grabbed a quick dinner and saw a movie to finish off a very full and absolutely wonderful day. 

general pregnancy update
here i am at 19 weeks (monday):

over the weekend i went on a little shopping spree and used some christmas and birthday money to get some better quality maternity clothes.  here’s some of what i got:

i feel like i’ve finally grown into my belly.  or maybe i am just used to it now?  it’s still a bit awkward, especially when bending over or reaching for stuff, haha.  but it doesn’t freak me out quite so much anymore.    i feel flutters off and on, but no kicks or anything that zach can feel on the outside. 

just before i hit the 17week mark, i turned a beautiful, glorious, 2nd trimester corner called “almost normal”!  i couldn’t believe it!  i had pretty much given up hope of feeling normal until after the birth, so this felt like the best day ever.  except for a few little things, i really do feel about 90% normal again.  (normal = how i felt before getting pregnant as far as nausea, energy, etc)  i say 90% because i still move a bit slower, have a bit less energy, and a few food aversions remain.  but i feel SO good and am SO grateful.  what a huge blessing it has been.  this has also allowed me to get back to exercising.  a very modified version of what i used to do, but i’ll take it. where i used to run 3 miles in 27-28 minutes, i am now walking the Rose Bowl track 3x/week (3 miles) in about 55 minutes.  i’m planning use my previous pilates video for strength training 2-3x/week and just modifying as necessary to work around my belly and new limitations.  i also no longer have an excuse to justify some of the crappy food i was eating before.  back to healthier choices!  which is fine by me because i’ve been REALLY into salads lately.  oh gosh, and can i just say how wonderful it is to be able to drink lots of water again without feeling awful??  hooray!

i can’t tell you how happy we are to be having a baby boy.  deep down, zach and i really wanted a boy first, but we honestly didn’t think the chances of that happening were very strong since girls tend to dominate the gene pool on the boomsma side.  since zach and his dad are each the ONLY males in their families there’s sort of a little “pressure” to have a boy so the boomsma name will carry on!  and we both love the idea of a “big brother” as the oldest sibling.  and honestly, i REALLY wanted my husband to have a son.  that actually felt more important to me than having a daughter (which i still very much want).  additionally, our culture needs strong, upright, God-fearing men.  and the women need solid guys to marry.  we are so excited about the opportunity to raise up a young man for Christ and we are already praying that the Lord will capture our son’s heart and bind it fast to Himself!  (basically i’m praying that little Jack will grow up to be just like His daddy!)