Saturday, April 16, 2011


Okay so I know that less than 10 percent of women deliver on their actual due date, but all this waiting is killing me! Technically, my due date isn't until tomorrow but I keep hoping I'll go in early. I want to meet my baby and I'll also admit it - I am soooo over being pregnant!

It feels like just yesterday when I ran into the bathroom stall at work and took a pregnancy test. I hadn't missed my period yet but my body had already been sending me some obvious signals. I saw two lines show up on the test - positive! That was such an emotional week. We weren't trying to get pregnant so my husband and I were pretty freaked out. Him a lot more than me - ha! But still ... it was pretty unexpected.

I look back now at the last 9 months and can't believe how our lives have already changed. We moved from our tiny apartment right near the subway to a larger, two bedroom in the "burbs" so that we could prepare for the arrival of our boy. We have painted, assembled, decorated, folded and re-folded baby clothes and everything is ready for him. Emotionally, I am so ready to finally see him in person. It's so strange how a woman can fall in love without having even seen her baby's face. But that's all I can say to describe it -- I am in love! I assure you, I did NOTHING to deserve to be so blessed and I am in awe every single day.

The house is clean... the bag is packed... the car seat is set up... baby where are you??!! I've been taking walks around my neighborhood to try and get distracted when I went into my nail salon and saw this nail color called "Baby Boy Blue" -- of course I had to get my nails and toes done right away!

Baby Blue for my Baby Boy :)

Okay so he isn't going to care what color my nails are... or that my hair is done... or that I have makeup on (what?! Just concealer and mascara) But it makes me feel good and now that it's all done I am just waiting... waiting to hold him in my arms.

Ohh now that I think of it, the inside of our car could really use a good cleaning. We don't want baby riding home in a filthy car! Gotta go get on that -- hopefully my next post is a picture of my little one!

X's and O's,

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Admire without the need to Acquire

I have to give the "cred" to my Pastor for this pretty awesome quote. It totally put things into perspective for me and is something I am learning more and more as my journey continues. My beautiful friend recently came over to bring me cookies (I had a craving and she is awesome) and we had this great conversation about relationships and how they change with the stages in our lives. I'd recently been agonizing over some friendships and she really spoke to my core when she said "April, you need to realize that this isn't about YOU... some people need to deal with themselves and learn to be happy with where they are in life."

I've definitely had those moments where I am envious of where a relative or friend is at in their lives. I know a couple who got married and immediately bought a house and while I was happy for them, it made me question God (from my tiny apartment)... like "Where is my house?" We have friends who take sweet vacations several times a year, get to shop at "Crate and Barrel" while we get all our stuff at Target, or have already landed the jobs of their dreams. Sometimes it's hard not to compare and it's even harder to be around these friends when I am feeling this. I guess when we struggle with jealousy, it's easier to stay away but is that the right thing to do? The problem lies within ME and my inability to be truly happy with where I am regardless of anyone else. Let me just add -- it's OK to be unhappy with where your life is. It's OK to admit that and say " I want more" but why is it? Is it based on what others have or is it based on what you TRULY want for yourself? I think that is the big difference.

In September of last year I started grad school and 2 of my girlfriends also did. Well, I remember having a conversation with another friend who is still finishing up her undergrad and she said that she did not want to have a party to celebrate her graduation. She said "I will just throw a big party when I finish grad school in a couple years". This really made me sad! I remember having this heart-to-heart with her and saying "No, you should celebrate this achievement and where you are right NOW". I think she was basing her decision on where other friends around her were and not remembering to celebrate in her own accomplishments. When we are constantly paying attention to others, we risk missing out on the beautiful moments of our own lives. We need to learn to ADMIRE without the need to ACQUIRE. I finished my first semester of grad school and loved it!! But now, I am taking time off to have a baby... sure, my friends will probably finish before me but this is MY PATH and everything needs to happen in the timing that is right for me. Plus, I think babies are so much cuter than diplomas :)

Jealousy causes people to try to be important in the eyes of man. If you have this problem, understand that God has you where you are for a reason. He knows what’s in your future, and He may have you in training for it right now. There’s a big difference between being able and being ready to do a specific thing. So don't despise the days of small beginnings. -- Joyce Meyer

I realize that at 26 years old, I am not in the same place as most of my peers. I'm a wife and mother and that alone puts me on such a unique path. I was blessed recently by a meetup that I had with some other young married women. We went out to dinner at Brother Jimmy's BBQ on the upper east side (so yummy) to just chat and have a relaxing night out. It was awesome because I looked around the table and conversation flowed so naturally. It's nice to connect and have support from others who are on similar paths... but I am learning that it's also beneficial to learn from and connect with those who are on different paths as well. We don't all need to be in the same place and we can admire each other, appreciate each other and not feel the need to change a thing about ME just because of where YOU are.

The lion in the Chronicles of Narnia said it best "when you want to be like someone else, you wish YOURSELF away.

My thoughts on this subject are still incomplete... but I will say this --I look in the mirror and I am happy with me :) "


Tuesday, April 5, 2011

The "Planning" Ninja

The last three or four years of my life have brought about many changes. I blogged about change at the beginning of this year and I honestly think that change has been wonderful for me. But when I look into how much my life has changed, I can say that in those moments it has been a little scary. Getting married, creating a home with someone, having a baby.. these are all such huge life changes! So while all of these are wonderful things, the fear of the unknown can sometimes cause some anxiety. So, what do I do to ease my anxiety? I make a list! I make a plan! Just seeing a clear-cut plan drafted out in-front of me helps me to say "ok April, it's all under control." Anyone who knows me well, knows that I am a planner. It's a huge part of my personality and while it can get on the nerves of some ( I just say those are disorganized people LOL) it has helped me in so many areas of my life. I was always a good student in school and people tend to think that I am "really smart". It's funny because whenever we are going to play a game that involved puzzles or trivia, people will say something like "You have to be on my team" because they think I am this intelligent person. Not to say that I don't consider myself smart but I am no more intelligent than anyone else. I simply PLAN ahead and stay organized. When the professor is lecturing and other students are taking notes in their notebooks, I am writing down key points on index cards so that I can use them to study ahead of time. Why fill pages and pages of a notebook and make flash cards one week before the exam? I say, fill out those flash cards NOW and use them to refer to during the week before the next class. It isn't about how "smart" you are, it's about how organized you are. In college, I had a professor who knew I typed up outlines of each lecture and he would ask me if he could use them to prepare exams for the class!

I love this quote I read on goal setting blog -- "
By failing to plan, you almost certainly fall into the trap of reacting to situations as they come along rather than dealing with priorities in a controlled, systematic manner"

This really summed it up for me because I am a very EMOTIONAL person. I would rather not react to situations as they come along because chances are that in the heat of the moment, I won't react the right way. Coming up with a plan ahead of time helps me to stay focused, consider all the options and even when things do not go according to my plan, I can always make adjustments while having the plan to refer back to.

So how do I come up with my plans? Well, I went to Business school so I tend to follow the SWOT analysis format. I lo
ok at the situation and analyze the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats. This helps to maximize my opportunities by utilizing my strengths in a particular situation. I used this approach while planning my wedding, planning a move to a new place and even planning for the new baby to become a part of our lives. It isn't as intense planning in my personal life but I absolutely stick to it when planning in my career and education.

Okay, Okay so do I sound crazy enough for you? I love to make lists! And even more than that, I love to draw out word webs, charts, and control information in general. What can I say? I'm a planning Ninja!

This isn't to say that I am not capable of just kicking back and "going with the flow".... I love to do this while on vacation! LOL. I don't create itineraries or map out each and every activity we will do on vacation. Less is more actually... I like to relax pool side or order in room service. But in real life, I just need to have a plan!

Maybe I need to just go with the flow more... maybe one day I will... ha.. probably not =)

Saturday, April 2, 2011

Why boys need parents...

I got this in an email and just had to share! It made me crack up =) Especially the little Spiderman boy. I think my husband would actually ENCOURAGE that. God help me! LOL!


















Friday, April 1, 2011

"Count your Blessings April " -- My Mom

Okay so today was my birthday! I am sure that around this time next year, I will be too busy planning my son's first birthday (we are going to share a month) to even care about celebrating my own... so this one was kind of important to me. Still, planning my son's is going to take the cake! Ha, no pun intended =)

Anyway, I'm not going to lie - there was a bit of sadness for me today. I am used to celebrating every year with friends and this year I didn't even get a "happy birthday" from most of those same friends. What I've been learning the past few months is that I can't just WANT... I have to be WANTED too and I'm learning to embrace and accept that. It's just hard when you think that friendships are stronger than they actually are.... maybe than they actually ever were. It sort of feels like it was all a lie and makes you feel dumb to have fought so much for someone and when it is their turn, they aren't willing to fight for you. Today, on my birthday I couldn't help but feel that sadness and mourn a little for those relationships... but then my mom said something to me: --- "COUNT YOUR BLESSINGS APRIL" ---> she really is smart isn't she??

So, though I don't "list post" very often, I decided that I am going to do just that. Because today I had a really great birthday and I am so very blessed.. Really I am!!! And I won't let sadness over a few people who don't want me to overshadow all the LOVE I felt from the loads of people who do! Love, family, friendships are so abundant in my life and I am so grateful to God for that.

1) A SAVIOR -- Waves of mercy, waves of grace, everywhere I look I see your face! I am blessed to know that I don't have to be perfect, that in my weakness he is strong and that he already paid the price so that I don't have to. That no-matter what, he LOVES me more than anyone ever will.

2) My husband --- yea, that's right I got a man! I come home to an extraordinary person every single day. I don't have to be anyone but myself with him... I don't have to try too hard... he just loves me for me. He stood up and made vows to love me forever and I am the luckiest girl alive. He respects me, and values me and sees my heart. He is a real partner and friend. Today, he sent me to a Maternity Spa for a massage, leg treatment and facial! And bought me strawberry cheesecake from my new favorite pastry shop - Enrico's. He showed me his love on my birthday but more than that he demonstrates his love for me every single day. I thank God that I have been blessed with this man and I am beyond thrilled to be carrying a part of him -- our son.

3) My Mom -- she was the inspiration behind my post today. She has taught me what sacrificial love is and she exemplifies Christ to me on a daily basis. She is patient, loving and understanding and she loves me unconditionally. I can tell her ANYTHING and I do. We have always talked about everything and I am so grateful for the bond that we have shared. I know some young women who don't talk to their moms about what is on their heart and that just makes me appreciate what I have so much. My mom is my best friend and today, she did so much to make my day special.

4) My Family -- I have a huge family so I won't go into details with names but I am grateful for all of them. My in-laws were here today and I am grateful to have married in to such a close, fun, and crazy family =) My aunts, uncles, cousins both near and far called, texted, emailed, Facebooked to show me their love on my birthday and it is so special to know I have been thought of. My beautiful niece left me a voice-mail and sang "happy birthday" to me. There is just nothing that matters more than my family.

5) My Church Family -- New Season Christian Center! I can't describe with words the blessing these people are in my life. I have found an amazing group of women who have supported me throughout my pregnancy with their advice, their love, and prayers. I have gained a new group of friends in the awesome worship team.. I have gotten to know other couples, singles, and some amazing kids. I got some touching messages and words of love from these people today and many birthday wishes I will never forget.

6) Girlfriends-- I had an awesome (and yummy) LADIES night in the city with my wonderful friends this week... young married women like me who have given me so much support and love that I have much needed. I got a special visit from a friend who brought me Girl Scout Cookies just because I was craving them and she wanted to make me happy :) I got yellow roses from another friend and a mani/pedi gift card handmade by her! I got a voicemail from a lovely friend in Queens who has been there for me and worn her heart on her sleeve. I have learned so much to value my relationships with other women and in the last few months GOD HIMSELF has sent some ladies into my path that have been such a blessing.

7) Guy Friends -- Ya know what I love about my guy friends? They are so simple and they don't get caught up in drama. LOL. I have been blessed by their consistency and that in itself is just amazing. They are fun and make me laugh and laughter really is the best medicine.

8) My Job -- throughout this whole pregnancy and especially the doctor's orders for me to stay on bed rest.. my company has been amazing and I am so grateful to have the option of working from home while I get ready to welcome Baby Picon into the world. I got a birthday card from my co-workers today and really appreciated that. God has provided this job for me and I am blessed!

9) Health -- God really knows what he is doing when making our bodies! I have seen that TRULY in the last 9 months. Even though pregnancy takes a toll, I am grateful that I have good health and strength to carry this child.

10) A beautiful apartment, food on the table, NO debt, bills paid, and savings --- Materially speaking, God has provided and I know that nothing I have is because of me. We have made steps this year that I am so grateful we have had the chance to make and I thank God for his provision.

=) Annnnddd my 26th year is bringing the biggest blessing yet -- the birth of my son! Who really needs more? What can I say I am missing? How can I be sad? When I count my blessings it is evident that there is just so much more reason to DANCE than to mourn. That my ashes have been traded in for BEAUTY and that my despair is no longer because I have been given a garment of PRAISE. (Isaiah 61:3)

Happy Birthday to me! And thanks to all of you who care and who made it special. You have no idea what that meant to me especially this year!