Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Recent Reactions to the Growing Belly

When are the twins due?

Oh my #@&*!

Your belly is really big. You look like you could have the biggest baby in the world. Did you know that the biggest baby ever born was 21 lbs? (from a child)

You are huge.

Are you having twins? Uhh, oh, no? Maybe it is just the shirt.

Pregnant women shouldn't eat donuts. I don't let my wife eat donuts and she is pregnant.

Why are you still working?! When are you due? September 26?! (eyeing the belly) Wow.

You have a month left?! You are going to have a big baby.

Friday, August 17, 2007

The Final Baby Shower

Here's the last baby shower for the grandmas to see and enjoy! The ladies from work threw a beautiful party.

Opening Gifts

Some of the Lovely Ladies

For one of the games, the ladies made clay likenesses of what our baby is going to look like. These two competed for first place. I am personally hoping that all the ladies' visions of the baby are quite off.

Monday, August 6, 2007

Yosemite Camping Trip

We had a wonderful vacation planned by our good friends, Doug and Tammy. They are Yosemite experts and organize a great trip every year. About 25 people from our church and Grace Community Church went camping together at Yosemite this year for four days.

View from Our Camp Site

Andy and five other from the group decided to climb Half Dome. They left at about 6 am and got back around 6 pm after completing the 16 mile hike. Needless to say, Arianna opted out.

Here's Andy on the "diving board" of Half Dome. It is piece of rock that juts out from the top of Half Dome and allows you to stand over the 4,800 foot drop off. Fun, huh?!

Glacier Point

Two Half Domes, Side by Side

For any of you that were wondering what we are going to name the baby, this sign gave us inspiration.

Yosemite Valley

Our Long Date with the Ice Cream Lady

Well, let's just say that we had some pretty fine plans for a date day that just didn't come about. We decided to spend the day together in Pasadena Old Town where there are some fun shops and restaurants. We headed out, planning to drop by REI first, which never happened because we couldn't find it for some reason, even though we had been there multiple times before. No problem, Pasadena still awaits. We headed off with high expectations only to have our car die, I mean absolutely stop working, on the freeway in Glendale (which is about 30 miles from home).

California freeways are a bit different than a lot of other freeways in the country. For example, if you saw someone almost at a complete stop with their hazard lights on as well as their blinker trying to get over to the shoulder of the road, would you continue barreling at them at 80 miles an hour for 300 feet, then at the last minute slam on your brakes, billowing up smoke, and honk your horn? I imagine not. But this is how Angelenos like to do it.

Once we managed to get to the side of the road alive, we called our insurance company because we have free tow service for up to 50 miles. They were very helpful to us as we sat in the 95 degree heat without water for over an hour (and yes, Arianna is 7 months pregnant and an icebox feels hot to her). However helpful our insurance company was trying to be, the towing companies decided to act just the opposite. They all were refusing our insurance company's request to take our car to our mechanic 30 miles away because it was too far. It finally was agreed upon that a tow company would tow our car to a storage lot and store it until they could get enough manpower to make the long 30 mile trip up to our mechanic.

About a half an hour later, the tow truck arrived. We were thankful to get out of the heat and into the somewhat cooled off tow truck, even though it smelled like cigarette smoke and that smell makes pregnant Arianna want to puke. We had found out that the storage area was in Van Nuys, which is about 17 miles away from home, so we were thankful that we would get a ride part of the way. We were having problems trying to find one of our friends to pick us up. Everyone we were calling was either out of town, not answering their phone, or they had no car to pick us up in. So at least we'd get to Van Nuys, which is quite a bit closer, and worry about it there. However, as soon as we got into the tow truck, the driver informed us that due to the company's insurance, they are not allowed to transport passangers to storage facilities and he would have to drop us off in the first safe area, which was the next freeway exit.

He dropped us off at a Vons supermarket, which was actually very nice because we hadn't brought any food or water with us. By this time, we had gotten a hold of Jerod and Sarah Gilcher, who were on their own date day at Malibu beach. They very graciously insisted that they were done with their date and were coming to pick us up. Very thankful to have a ride home, we settled down for a Vons deli late lunch at 4 pm. As Andy was running around the store getting food, a worker from the deli kept bringing out free sample sandwhich slices to Arianna, who must have looked like she was going to pass out or something. Andy came back with a big jug of Tropicana juice, which we took turns drinking out of. Very classy. He also bought jojo's and chicken strips. However, the deli worker informed him after buying the items, they were all out of complimentary sauces, napkins, and cups. Andy begged off some sauce and napkins off Panda Express and a cup off Starbucks, which also were in the Vons food court.

As we settled in to eat, we noticed that we were not the only ones to come to Vons and eat like we hadn't had the opportunity for awhile. There were several senior citizens that appeared to have their patterns down of coming on it, buying some food and a magazine, eating, then walking home. There was one elderly lady that particularly caught our attention. She was there when we had originally entered Vons and had been finishing up some food. In the few hours that we were sitting at the Vons deli, we had opportunity to observe her.

The Ice Cream Lady, as we fondly call her, pulled out a half gallon of ice cream from her shopping bag, a metal spoon from home from her pack, and got to business. She ate on her strawberry ice cream very slowly and methodically for several hours, slightly rotating the container after each bite of ice cream. Over the hours we saw her work a full container of ice cream down to where you could barely see her spoon as she was scraping close to the bottom. Now, this wasn't big woman, but she almost downed an entire half gallon! When she was done, she threw away her garbage, washed off her spoon in the drinking fountain, yelled at the Vons clerk who was trying to clean up some tables near her, and put on enormous headphones (sort of like what air traffic controllers wear). It seemed like the Vons workers were familiar with her pattern and weren't disturbed by her yelling at them. Then our little friend started the walk home.

We also eventually got home-even after our cell phone died before completing directions to the Gilchers (we had to borrow a stranger's phone to call them back). The poor Gilchers also got caught in stopped bumper to bumper traffic on Saturday trying to get to us. Our black cloud had apparently extended to all who tried to help us.

It ended up being a memorable day, although maybe not fun. The Gilcher's kindly made us dinner and we had a great time with them. Thank the Lord for good friends and laughable memories!