well, baby p is looking less like a sea monkey, more like a human!

we had our second ultrasound this week, and i must say it was kind of amazing. up until this point things haven't felt very real. i've mostly just felt sick...not really preggo.
but the ultrasound tech once again proved to us that there really is something there in my belly, enjoying a whole world of it's own. the baby was moving and dancing around the whole time we were peeking in.

technology is amazing.

the ultrasound tech even ask us if we wanted to know the gender!

i totally wasn't ready for that question.
the hubby and i still haven't agreed on whether or not to find out. he doesn't want to know, but i kind of do.

anyways, she said she couldn't really give us a definitive answer on the gender this early, but she had an educated guess if we wanted to know it. we decided to pass this time though...since it wouldn't be for sure, and since we still aren't in agreement! :P

the next sonogram isn't until early february...but hopefully i can convince the hubby before that!

having a baby on the way, with the addition of the holiday season, seems to have me missing my dad perhaps even more than normal lately.

i think being a grandfather is something he would have enjoyed thoroughly.

my dad was one of the few people i've ever known who wanted to be old. i think he probably looked towards his elderly years with anticipation. it seems like he was always sort of an old soul.

ironically, he never really got a chance to get too old. though he secretly treasured every gray hair that he had like a badge of honor.

he would have been such a fun grandpa. though i think what he had decided he would officially want to be called is 'grandaddy'...how old is that?!

i feel sad because i miss him...but i also feel sad for my child who will never get to know him. i just hope that i can find a way to make him real.

this week i saw my baby. (this post was written oct. 29)

we had our first sonogram, which was a crazy and surreal experience.

maybe i watch too many documentaries, but up until that point i had this secret fear that perhaps my body was just tricking me and i wasn't really pregnant. has anyone ever heard the story of the historical bloody mary? it seems that her infamous rage and bloodshed on all of england may have actually been the result of crazy hormones that gave her two false pregnancies that actually fooled the doctors as well. crazytown, right?

anyways, i need to stop watching the history channel.

all is well, and there's really a baby inside! i was amazed at how much i could actually see even though things are still very early. they said i'm only at 7ish weeks. but still, i could see little arms and legs, and a little heart just pumping away at 140 beats a minute.


although i've felt like crap the past few weeks, i can't get over how amazing this experience is. how God really does make something amazing from nothing...and so quickly too! at this point the little one is more than doubling in size every week!

we really are fearfully and wonderfully made. i think science confirms that now more than ever.

*this post was written in october, but you will likely be reading this a couple months later.*

this week i got one of these...

yes, that's a positive pregnancy test. i took a second one just to be sure.

i yelled from the bathroom, and shomik came running because he thought we were out of toilet paper or something.

we were both pretty surprised.

which is in fact surprising...since we were sort of trying to get pregnant.

not trying in the strict sense...but we'd pulled the goalie awhile back.

however, my cycles had been super irregular and frustrating...with several months of late periods and no pregnancies, so i had gotten to where being late didn't really surprise me or make me suspicious.

plus, i had taken a test when this period first went MIA several weeks before, and got a negative at that point. so this test happened more than 3 weeks later...when i was about to miss a second period.

as a result the doctor thinks we could be as far as 6-8 weeks along. which would mean the end of may is baby time!

crazy, right?!

it completely doesn't feel real yet.

except for that my boobs hurt like crazy. i'm having some mean heart burn too...though i had previously attributed that to eating fried foods at the fair this week. :P i guess that is still a likely cause.

we're excited though. even though we have no clue what we're doing or how things will work.

it's definitely a miracle.
good thing God gives us a bit of time to get used to the idea.
i hope he'll prepare me to be a good mama as well over the next few months! :)

so our dear friends asked us if they could throw a Lord of the Rings Movie Marathon Birthday Party at our house...

to which our response was obviously, HECK YES!

first of all, i love it when people have parties at our place. it's all the fun of throwing a party yourself, but oh so much less responsibility! :)

and secondly, being the geeks that we are, how could we not get totally psyched at the idea of a LOTR party?! oh, and did i mention that there would also be 7 hobbit meals...like they have in the shire?!

anyways...needless to say it was epic.
probably the coolest party ever. i wish i had thought of it first.

our house was totally transformed into middle earth...
once we started decorating, we all kind of got carried away and stayed up till 3:30am kind of having our own pre-party party. it was totally worth it. :)

our dining room was rivendell...

my friend april deserves the best wife award for making her husband this cake and for all her hard work!

fanghorn forest?

how about a little hobbit stew?

or shelob cookies...

and maybe some lembas bread? one small bite will feed a grown man for a day. i found this recipe online, and  it was definitely other worldly.

oh, and did i mention that there were costumes? i wish i'd gotten pics of everyone...

if you go to the bathroom, be careful as you pass through shelob's lair...

happy birthday kyle! thanks to you and april for letting us be a part of the fun!

ok, so the past month has been crrrrazytown!

not in a bad way. just in a busy way. in fact, there are probably a million other things i should be doing at the moment, but i feel the need to blog. i need the diversion. my brain needs to let off a little steam. :) so anyways...

remember how a couple months ago i found a pretty cool vintage capiz light at the habitat restore?

well. it is still sitting in our garage. forever waiting to be installed by my hubby.
but unfortunately for him, i've developed a new light fixture crush in the mean time, and this one costs more than $2.

that's what happens babe. :P

anyhow, i found an image of a gorgeous dining room on pinterest awhile back. check it out...

pretty, huh? i like the feel of it...that mirror rocks, and i'm a total sucker for moroccan inspired lighting!

so you can imagine that i fell pretty quickly when i saw this in world market's new lighting selection!

i think i'm in love. what to do!?

i could totally imagine a couple of these over our dining table! it's not cheap though, but at $69 a pop, it's probably not really more expensive than buying something like this in india would be. that's what i love about world market. a lot of their larger handmade items are actually priced really well...plus they give you sweet coupons on top of it all!

so what do yall think?
i love a global look. though i worry a bit about overkill, because seriously folks...i have an addiction! i think there's probably more indian/ethnic stuff in my house than in any place i've seen in india!
so how much is too much? what's the line between awesome and crrrrazy?! :)

how many licks does it take to get to the tootsie roll center of a tootsie pop?!

home decor blogs are my guilty pleasure. i like to breeze through them in the morning while i sip my chai.

so when a few of my favorite blogs (YHL, Bower Power, Style by Emily Henderson, and Making a House a Home) joined together to issue a Pinterest Challenge, it inspired me to make practical use of my pinning. :P plus, me and my friend Laurene had been talking about actually doing some projects for awhile.

we have lots of boob lights in our house...thanks to it being built in the 70s. and i have been on a mission to be rid of them. i got rid of one earlier this summer, and now i was on a mission to be rid of the one in our hallway. our hallway was in need of a little excitement for sure.

i love the capiz shell chandeliers that are so in style right now...but they're kind of pricey if you plan to buy one. fortunately though, there are about a million tutorials on how to DIY a wax paper version all over pinterest and the internet. i won't go into the details of how i did it since the formula is already out there, but i pretty much followed these directions, except i used and old busted out lamp shade as my frame, and i used a circle puncher to make all the wax paper shells. no way i'd have the patience to cut a million circles with scissors. oh, and i used fishing line instead of thread.

to hang it i just used 3 mug hooks, and since it was pretty big i just hung it directly over the boob light and didn't even bother to take it down. i figure protecting the wax paper from any heat coming from the light is probably a good thing.

anyways, our hall way is now officially fancy! (sorry, i forgot to take before pics..but who hasn't seen a million boob lights? i'm sure you can imagine. :P)

i love how it adds some texture and height to the hall.
this project cost a grand total of about $5...and some time.

ok, maybe a lot of time. but once i figured out how to make it work, and got into a rhythm, it probably took about 6 hours. of course those hours were spread out across many days though.

realistically, this is a very busy time of year for me, and fun DIY projects should have been the lowest priority on my list. but once i started it was almost therapeutic. it became my late night obsession, and my way to unwind after a busy day. almost every spare second i had (or didn't have) was spent working on this baby, so my husband will probably be glad to have me back now.

so...2 boob lights down, and one to go. any ideas on what i should do with the last surviving boob light in the entry way?

have i mentioned that it's hot in texas right now?
like crazy hot. like so hot that a friend of mine just left for india and was surprised at how much cooler it felt there!

i have a serious chai addiction, which doesn't go well with these temps. it's a problem.

so i took matters into my own hands and made a little summertime invention...chaice cream.
chaice cream= chai ice cream.

all i did was make my usual chai with cardamom, cloves, and cinnamon, boiled it in just whole milk, added sweetened condensed milk, and whipped it up in the good ol' ice cream machine.

and it's awesome. can i say that?

sorry for the melty pic. i just couldn't wait for it to finish setting before i had a little taste.

i love experimenting with ice cream flavors.
sometimes it's a total fail. but this time my friend, i say we have a winner! :)

hang in there friends, and have some chaice cream! it can't stay this hot forever...can it?

i know i'm a little late, but after hearing about it forever, i've finally jumped on the pinterest bandwagon...and it think it is going to change my life!

ok, so maybe that's a little dramatic...but seriously, for me i will say that this could trump facebook.
i know. that's a bold statement. and i've only been on it for 24 hours! :P
but i can already tell you that it's much more my style.

if you haven't heard about pinterest, it's basically a social network that helps you catalog all the things you love...and as a bonus you get to share with friends too.

so this is the story of my life. i stumble across something cool on the web, and it's probably not related to what i'm working on at the moment,  but i decide i must save the image for future reference. so i throw it in a folder on my computer where it (a) never sees the light of day again, or (b) when i do get around to checking it out again, i have no idea where it came from.

the concept behind pinterest is that when you run across something you like, you "pin" it (using a button that gets added to your book mark tool bar), and it goes onto your pinterest 'board'. not only is the image saved, but also the source link is referenced. which means that you can use pinterest for almost anything, from recipes, to diy, to shopping!

when you pin things to your board they also get shared with your friends, and vice versa. which means there is constant inspiration coming from all directions as your friends find stuff as well...which you can then re-pin for yourself! you can also specify your interest by choosing certain boards that you want to follow.

my job often requires a bit of creativity, so God knows i need all the help this little mind can get! (do you like how i'm justifying using this for work? hmmm...)

anyways, it's pretty self explanatory once you get on there. and addictive. beware.

oh, and i've added a link to pinterest on my little ol'blog here, so if you're on pinterest, click the button the side bar to follow my boards!
happy pinning!

so remember our great idea to take a dogcation? (=vacation with our dogs)
well, i still think it was a nice idea, but this year it was kind of a fail.

since it's a million degrees in texas, we decided to drive up to the rocky mountains to beat the heat with the pups a couple weeks ago!

however, word to the wise...make sure you get a vet check up before taking your dog to a high altitude! we almost lost a pup!

poor mowgli. our little old man.
what started off as lethargy turned into a cough and difficulty breathing, until his face turned blue, and we took him to the vet in colorado, who loaded him up with meds and told us to drive back to texas as fast as we could!

apparently our poor momo has congestive heart failure (and possibly a heart tumor, but we're praying it isn't!). the vet said that this is an underlying issue that had been building for awhile (though his annual check ups never picked up on it!), and is common for his age and breed.

the good news, hopefully by taking this trip we caught his heart problems earlier than we would have otherwise. with the right medication we will be treating him sooner, and hopefully still have him around for a good long while. say a prayer for him though!

i'm talking about it nonchalantly now, but this happened a couple weeks ago. i've been too traumatized to share before now. but mowgli is pretty much back to acting like his old self, so i'm able to breathe again!

i guess the vacation wasn't a total fail.
we did have a fantastic time before mowgli decided to almost kick the bucket.

look, the dirt matches my hair! (in route near amarillo)

caprock canyons (still in texas)

bindi matches the dirt too. :P (and doesn't she look like she's heckling in this pic?!)

great sand dunes national park, co

yes. it's giant sand dunes randomly in the middle of the rockies!

i think mowgli was still having fun at this point too...

our little mountain retreat! it was a 100+ year old guard station. if you ever want nice and cheap vacation accommodations, be sure to check out the national forest service!

our good friend abhishek met us for a day, and we drove up into the mountains on the back roads with his subaru...and got a little lost too! ;) but hey, we're still alive. navigators extraordinaire.

it looks small from here, but that was a huge waterfall coming off the mountains!

ruins from an ancient city of cliff dwellers in mesa verde national park. definitely go and see this if you ever get the chance.

our cute little dog friendly B&B. this was a historic inn, and we actually stayed in the room that teddy roosevelt supposedly stayed in when he passed through the area!

unfortunately our vacation ended here. telluride and santa fe were still on the agenda, but we had too book it back to texas to get our sweet baby home asap.

but maybe another year. i'm sure there will be other summers that we'll need to escape the texas heat...just maybe not with the pups.

today my dear husband turns 32.

so i'd like to dedicate my blog to him today, and share just 32 of the little things that make me head over heels for him more and more! i love you shomik!

1. i love your generosity and willingness to always help others.
2. i love that you've created a home together with me.
3. i love your obsession with excel sheets.
4. i love the way you can never find anything.
5. i love your karate skills.
6. i love the way you love my family.
7. i love your full kissable lips!
8. i love it that you cook for me...and you're a great cook!
9. i love your big brown eyes.
10. i love the way i still can't always understand your crazy indian accent! ;)
11. which reminds me...i love the way your say the word 'squirrel'!
12. i love the way you oil your head! :P
13. i love it that you've been with me during some of the best moments of my life.
14. i love it even more that you've been there with me during the worst moments of my life.
15. i love your interest in learning new things.
16. i love it that you're a nerd!
17. i love the way you're such a hard worker.
18. i love it when you laugh out loud!
19. i love how you are such a patient teacher.
20. i love the way you research everything.
21. i love the way you love God, and have sought to truly know him even when it wasn't easy.
22. i love the way you think everything through.
23. i love it that you take care of me.
24. i love the way you treat our pets like your children!
25. i love the way you look after your family.
26. i love it that you can speak like 4 different languages and don't even think it's a big deal.
27. i love your obsession with collecting love songs.
28. i love the ways you sometimes remind me of my dad.
29. i love it that you're a perfectionist.
30. i love it that you've shared a whole new culture with me.
31. i love it that we've seen the world together.
32. i love and i'm so thankful that you've been willing to give up so much to be with me.

there are many more things that i love about you...but i guess i'll have to save those for the many years to come! ;)
happy birthday my love.

when i was in like first grade, i remember my teacher telling my parents that i might end up being an artist or something, because i was artistically ahead of most of the other kids in my class.

i was also taller than most of the kids my age.

but then they caught up to my height. i think they probably caught up to my artistic ability as well.
while i used to enjoy painting and drawing, that is sadly something that i haven't done in ages. any minor artistic inclinations i have now only get a chance to come out when i'm working on some kind of graphic design, or maybe decorating my house.

but lately i'd been itching to paint something. in fact, i even went out and got a canvas a couple months ago on a day when i was feeling particularly inspired. but then alas...i got busy, and it sat collecting dust in the corner of my office.

the other day though i ran across a picture that totally inspired me, so i determined to make myself sit down at some point this weekend and finally get to painting!

the inspiration:

is that not totally rad?!
it had me at hello.

so anyways, like i said...my artistic skill didn't advance with me too far beyond grade school... but i thought i'd take a stab at ripping off a watercolor world map...and maybe adding a bit of personalization! ;)

i have lots of friends from around the world. and my husband and i are from opposite sides of the globe, so a world map has a nice significance to me. and i thought i'd also add something to mark those places that are special to us.

so how did i make my creation?
i kind of cheated.

i printed out a rough graphic i had of the world. taped all the paged together to make a poster. exactoknifed that baby up. and then laid it over the canvas like a stencil.

if all turned out well, my hope was to hang my new piece of art over our fireplace.

no pressure!

i really needed it to turn out decent though, because my mantle was in need of a serious switcharoo.

when we moved into our house (2 years ago!), i just put up the same stuff that we had over the mantle in our apartment. which was much smaller.

so it looked a little dwarfed above the fireplace, and blended into the wall a little too much...but alas, i hadn't found anything else i really liked, at a price that i liked. :P so there it stayed.

i'm not good with mantles. i wish i was one of those people who changed it out every season...but that's never happened. at best it just gets some stockings added at christmas.

so anyways. enough mantle babble. are you ready for the grand reveal??!

don't get too excited.


lower those expectations.

it's not that impressive.

but...it was fun. that's what counts, right?

ummm. yeah.
so it definitely looks better the further away you get! :P
but i don't hate it.

did you like the little hearts on texas and india?!
i thought it was a romantic little touch! ;)

my husband can't get past the fact though that you can't properly distinguish the state of gujarat in india. but hey let's face it. there's a whole lot of stuff that can't be properly distinguished! you get the basic idea though. i would advise you not to try sailing around the world using this map as your guide. let's just call it an artistic interpretation. ;)

not bad though for a grand totally of about $15 and a couple hours time.

if i had it to do over again, i dunno if i've add all the splattering...it didn't quite achieve the whole effect i was going for. and i'd also blow up the map a little bigger so there would be less white space.

but for now. i say good enough.
i guess it will have to wait until i have another wave of artistic inspiration! ;)

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