Every Saga Has A Beginning

December 3, 2007 at 2:26 PMJeremy

It's been a family tradition (apparently ever since my mom and dad first married) to get together as an extended family for Sunday lunch.  This tradition has taken place at a variety of places and with a variety of people, including friends, dates, and extended family.  The menu has ranged from grilled steak all the way to chili dogs, but it's never really been about the food.  It's always been a special tradition to me, in a sense being a small family reunion each week.  Therefore, I knew that once Marci and I had a house of our own, we'd want to host Sunday lunch. 

This past Sunday, we finally had our house fixed up to a point where we could have everybody over.  Brandon and Sam were busy, but we still had most of our usual crowd with Nana, Mom, Greg, Brenda, Tim, Katie, and Lucas.  We also extended the invitation out to Marci's parents, who came in from Harker Heights along with Marci's cousin, Andrew.  Marci "made" lasagna (the Stouffer's people were a little help) and salad, Mom brought bread, Nana brought chocolate cake (half without nuts for me!), Brenda and Tim brought another dessert and tea, and Mary and Jim brought tea and helped finish out the meal by bringing disposable plates, cups, and silverware.  We had to be spread across three tables, but everybody was eventually able to get through our little kitchen and into a place to sit and eat.

We walked almost everybody through the house to either see it for the first time, or see what we'd done since the last time they visited.  Only the master, living room, kitchen, and dining room have really changed; the rest of the house is as it had been since Sean and Cami moved out.  There was one particular decorating element, on our mantle, that got a couple of comments and even caused Mary to pull me aside to ask about it. 

 
Something extra was hung by the chimney with care...

Well, after everybody was settled down eating (actually at the next commercial break, for the folks who were watching football), Marci and I stood up and told everyone that Marci's pregnant!  That elicited quite a bit of surprise and congratulations, and started a pretty lengthy discussion about how to decorate the nursery, what furniture we needed, how Marci had been feeling, and who else knew.

So, the details (and other odds and ends):

* Marci was 8 weeks pregnant on Sunday.  We're counting weeks the way the doctor does--from last cycle, not from conception.  We're only 6 weeks post-conception, which I kinda like because it feels like there's more time.  Baby Dieterich right now has a due date of July 16th, so if he or she is a little early, it might share a birthday with Daddy.

* Marci's fine.  She's been elated ever since we found out.  Her only real complaint so far has been "morning" sickness, which is a complete scam because it affects her all day.  She's had it since week 6, but she's getting by with small meals every 2 or 3 hours.

* Marci is four weeks behind another couple in our church, Joel and Sarah, and two weeks behind Mary's friend, Sherry.  So who knows, maybe there's some friends in the making.

* Funny story: Nana actually predicted this was going to happen.  On October 7th, the day before we closed on our house, we stood outside her house with her and talked about how unsure we were about buying a house and how much of a commitment it was.  She told us that you never really know for sure and that even if you feel ready, other things can often come up that make you doubt it.  In fact, she said, in her experience people would finally make the decision to buy a house, and then almost as soon as they did, they'd wind up pregnant with a whole new set of financial worries.  Well, we closed on our house on the 8th, and the first night we stayed in our new home (the 16th) was when "the magic" happened.

* Funny story 2: While we were in Washington, D.C., Marci's brother BJ began to suspect that Marci was pregnant (he's been "suspecting" almost ever since he and Courtney had their child).  In reality, ever since we had... well, stopped trying not to conceive... about a year ago, I told Marci not to drink alcohol during the last two weeks of her cycle, just in case.  We didn't know it at the time and were just being cautious, but it turned out to be a good thing that she turned down the drinks she was offered, since Baby Dieterich was visiting D.C. with us. (and just think, the airport screeners had no idea we were smuggling someone else onto the plane!)

* Funny story 3: We'd been practicing what's called the Fertility Awareness Method for about a year, not really using it to conceive or prevent, but just know what's going on.  Apparently a woman's temperature rises in the days following ovulation.  One of the "rules" is that after 18 consecutive days of high temperatures, you're either ill or you're pregnant.  Since I was the one keeping track of her chart, I actually knew Marci was pregnant before she did!

* Funny story 4: That 18th morning we just happened to have dentist appointments really early.  We don't have dental insurance so they tried to keep our costs down by staggering when we each of us had X-rays done.  I wasn't really wanting to tell anybody anything too prematurely (since my hygenist is a family friend), so I tried to get them to take my X-rays this time (just in case there was something that could harm the baby).  Well, Marci had mentioned a tooth was bothering her, and my teeth were (as usual) perfect, so they did hers.  I was paranoid about it during my cleaning, but when I finished I asked her about it, and she said it was cool.  They put the big lead vest over her like they always do.  Plus, as it turns out, her hygenist was 6 months pregnant at the time, and so Marci was able to explain that we were going to know any day now but that maybe she was, and the hygenist reassured her that it was okay (and she works around that all day).  After the appointment, Marci went home, took a pregnancy test, and confirmed what we suspected.  Then, to tell me, she calls me at work--she doesn't wait and surprise me, she doesn't drive out to tell me in person... heck, at least she didn't just text me: PGNT! LOL!  I was lucky she had still hung onto the test so I could see it for myself.

Now, the obligatory belly picture, although it's still too early to see anything.



8 weeks

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Thanksgiving

November 26, 2007 at 5:53 PMJeremy

Everybody else seems to have posted something about their Thanksgiving, but ours was really uneventful.  Marci and I (and Tipsy, who spent the weekend with us) were mostly just lazy and sat around the house. 

Wednesday, I picked up Tipsy a little early because I came home at lunchtime and worked the rest of the day from home.  It was so nice to home, dressed comfortably, rather than having to wear dress-up clothes (even though it's just business casual) and sit under flourescent lights in my poorly conditioned office (by "poorly conditioned", it's at the end of a weak A/C duct and in the corner of the building with big windows, so basically it's too hot in the summer and too cold in the winter).  [Maybe I'll make more of a push to telecommute, since my project leader works out of his house and calls me on my cell anyway...]  Anywho, I think Tipsy just fell in love with our yard--the weather was cool and dry and she could run through the grass and explore and not worry about stickers or anything like that.  Plus, it was great for us because the previous owners had already doggy-proofed the yard (they had a digger and had put railroad ties along the fence to keep her from getting out), so Tipsy got to spend as much time as she wanted outside without us worrying about her getting into trouble.

Thursday we slept in and piddled (sp?) around the house all day until it was time to go to Nana's for Thanksgiving dinner, which was delicious.  Nana's stuffing is normally good, but this year was better than it's ever been, as evidenced by the fact that there were almost no leftovers left after Sunday!

Friday we did actually make it to one of the Black Friday sales: Ace Hardware.  I'd heard on the radio that they would have folding tables and chairs for cheap so we picked up a set--good for when we host lunch at our house or as impromtu deck furniture since we still don't have any outdoor stuff yet.  The rest of the day didn't go so well--I was trying to change out the electrical sockets in the master bedroom (since we're doing the trim in black) and ran into problem after problem.  One outlet had been wired with reverse polarity (and had centimeters of slack to work with), others wouldn't mount in the box quite right or took a lot of wrangling to get the wires hooked up.  Next, I turned on the recessed lights in the living room and blew the whole thing, knocking out a bulb and leaving the dimmer switch inoperable.  Finally, I decided to hook up my surround sound speakers only to discover that one run had become disconnected in the middle leaving me with about 8 inches of wire in the wall not hooked to anything.  Needless to say, I wasn't feeling too good about my handyman skills (or the house) at this point.

Saturday went much better.  We ran by Home Depot in the morning to pick up some stuff (thanks, Brandon and Sam!), and I changed out the bulbs in the recessed lights, and even found that the dimmer was still working but came disconnected.  I fixed the reversed outlet and swapped out our noisy fan control in the living room with a simple three-speed switch.  Marci installed a set of shelves for our shower since we are somewhat limited for space.  We even started decorating for Christmas, which is pretty early by Dieterich family standards.  This year will be a first for me, since I'll have to try my hand at decorating the outside of the house (maybe).  Thankfully Sean left the Christmas lights that they used on the house; I just have to figure out where they go and how to put them up.  Oh, the joys of home ownership. . .

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DC - The Voyage Home

October 30, 2007 at 7:10 PMJeremy

Well, it was a fun trip, but it was time to head home.  After getting up painfully early (I didn't see too well), we drove out to the airport and hopped on our plane to DFW.  We got to catch up on two episodes of Heroes on the laptop, which helped pass the time.  At DFW, we had a bit of a plane mixup.  We were told we'd be leaving gate 39, then it got changed to 37, 36, and finally 38.  Once we finally got onto our plane, it was a short (and thankfully pretty smooth) flight back to Waco. 

It had been a great 6 days off, but I'm glad to be home.  It'll be nice to have a restful weekend of. . . working on the house.  Oh well.  At least I can sleep in. 

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DC Day 4

October 29, 2007 at 10:23 PMJeremy

Today was another all-over day.  We got up a little late and had a leisurely breakfast buffet, met Jim, Mary, and Courtney downstairs to drop off our luggage (since we checked out of the room), then hit the Metro for Arlington Cemetery.  We saw the eternal flame at Kennedy's grave, Bobby Kennedy's grave, the Tomb of the Unknowns (at noon to catch the changing of the guard and a wreath changing ceremony), the amphitheater, Robert E. Lee's Arlington House, and memorials to the crews of Space Shuttles Challenger and Columbia.  The weather made for some great walking around, although I did think I was going to lose Marci on the last set of stairs we went up!

We next headed toward the Bureau of Engraving & Printing, only to discover that they were closing at 2PM in 10 minutes (guess they keep banker's hours).  Instead, we went to the National Archives to see the Declaration of Independence (no, no map on the back) and Constitution.  Next we continued on to Capitol Hill.  It was way too late to get tickets to tour inside, but we did walk around and take pictures.  No HillDog sightings, although if I had seen her you'd probably know already because it would've made national news.

With that, we'd seen practically everything that we wanted to see, so we trekked on over to Union Station for a very late lunch and a look around at the shops.  When we were done there, we headed to the Metro station which was right inside and rode back out toward Virginia and met up with the family.  We had some greasy burgers and fries from Five Guys and then hung around the apartment until it was time to go to sleep.  The sleeping quarters were a little cramped (I think my foot was in a bookcase for a while), but it was convenient for getting to the airport Tuesday. (and you couldn't beat the price!)

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DC Day 3

October 28, 2007 at 10:08 PMJeremy

Today we got up and had breakfast at BJ and Courtney's, then went to church.  After church, we had lunch on our way out to Dulles and the new Air and Space Museum.  It was awesome!!!  We saw the SR-71, X35, SST Concorde, the Enola Gay, and the Space Shuttle Enterprise. 

Then we went for some pizza for dinner, and went on a ghost tour in Alexandria, Virginia.  I didn't see any ghosts, but it was pretty neat anyway.  A lot of the buildings are over 100 years old, and even our tour guide was all dressed up in colonial dress.  He may have even been a little too authentic, but that's a story for another time.

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