The Much Delayed November Round-Up

I read 10 books in November, 4 non-fiction, 6 fiction. I read 3 of these book on my new Kindle Fire.

As the Pig Turns by M.C. Beaton. The latest Agatha Raisin mystery – nothing brilliant, but always good when I want a mindless, 24-hour read.

The read-aloud handbook by Jim Trelease. My boss gave me this book when she found out I was pregnant, and I really loved it. The first half of the book talks about the benefits of reading aloud to children and the second half has recommendations of good read-aloud books for every age and topic. I love to read (obviously) and can’t wait for us to read to our little one!

The Mirror Crack’d from Side to Side by Agatha Christie. Another Miss Marple – slowly working my way through these, enjoying every one.

Smokin’ Seventeen by Janet Evanovich. I got a new Kindle Fire in November (thanks, Jami!), and one of the first things I did was figure out how to check out books from the library. This Stephanie Plum mystery was the first one I checked out and it was a fun read. While I will always love a print book, I have to say I’m loving the Kindle, especially for library books, which I  was never going to keep a print copy of anyway!

Onions in the Stew by Betty MacDonald. I loved the Mrs. Piggle Wiggle books as a child (if you haven’t read them, I highly recommend them), and Betty MacDonald wrote them. When I heard that she had a memoir, I couldn’t wait to read it. Written in the 1950s, Onions in the Stew is mostly a humorous account of the MacDonalds move to an island off the coast of Seattle, and doesn’t focus much on MacDonalds writing. There are a few racial comments that were a little uncomfortable to me as a modern reader (referring to a particular gentleman as colored, the matter of fact way MacDonald describes getting an apartment because the Japanese couple living there were sent to an internment camp), but it was still an interesting, enjoyable read.

Lady Fortescue Steps Out by Marion Chesney. With the purchase of a new Kindle Fire, came a free month trial to Amazon Prime. In addition to free, fast shipping, a Prime membership gives you access to the Kindle Lending Library – a collection of titles that you can borrow for free (you can only borrow one a month, so it’s really not going to replace an actual library, but still pretty cool). This was my Lending Library selection. Chesney is a pen name for M.C. Beaton, the author of the Agatha Raison series, and this is the amusing first addition to a non-mystery series that she wrote in the 1990s about the poor relatives of British aristocrats who open a hotel in the early 1800s.

Explosive Eighteen by Janet Evanovich. The next Stephanie Plum novel – also a Kindle library book. Amusing as always.

Daytripper by Gabriel Ba. This was beautiful Brazilian graphic novel, which highlights important days in the life of the protagonist, Bras de Olivias Dominguez, and imagines if he had died on each of those days. (That sounds dark, but it’s really and interesting concept and very well done, not morbid or depressing). If you like graphic novels, I really recommend this one.

Wine to Water: A Bartender’s Quest to Bring Clean Water to the World by Doc Hendley. I got this book through Early Reviewers and I enjoyed reading about Doc Hendley’s creation of the charity Wine to Water. I really came to appreciate the dire need for something so simple as clean water in much of the world. It made me really thankful for what I have. Hendley’s writing wasn’t quite my style, but it was still a good read and introduction to the work of Wine to Water.

Around the World by Matt Phelan. In this graphic novel, Phelan recounts the tales of three explorers who went around the world – Joshua Slocum, Thomas Stevens, and Nellie Bly. Phelan is an excellent illustrator, but I think that this book wasn’t quite the tour de force that his first graphic novel, The Storm in the Barn was.

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The Much Delayed November Round-Up

35 Weeks

my lovely wife.

What’s NOT New: The baby is still breech. It feels like I have tried everything at this point to get the baby to turn: inversions, the chiropractor, playing the baby music through the lower part of my belly, moxibustion, walking on my hands in the pool, cat-cow yoga exercises, putting something cold on the top of my belly, asking nicely… Our baby is stubborn.

What IS New: I’m BIG. I know I said this last time, but it’s more and more true. I’ve now reached the waddling stage. When tired I don’t even really waddle, I lumber. Our childbirth classes have finished and the first couple in the class has already had their baby. Amazing. I’m still focused on getting through Christmas and getting everything set at work for my absence, but the end is in sight. I’m not to the “I’m ready” stage yet, but I definitely see it in my not too distant future.

35 Weeks

33 Weeks

Carrie and Sofie.

What’s New: As you can probably tell from the fact that I haven’t given an update in 6 weeks, life has been BUSY! On the pregnancy symptoms front, the heartburn continues, and I’ve also started having some swelling in my hands and feet. Nothing extreme, but enough to make me whiny. Good reason to come home and put my feet up. I’m also starting to feel BIG. Not unattractive (I actually really like my pregnant body), but like my belly is getting in the way of things and I’m having to compensate for it. I can’t imagine how big I’ll be by the end! Childbirth classes have continued and now we only have one left. I think they’ve been helpful, but they have definitely added to the busyness. I also went to a breastfeeding class a few weeks ago, which was good. I have some concerns about breastfeeding, so I’m trying to be as informed and prepared as possible.

Appointments I’ve Had: Since the last update, I have had an ultrasound and three midwife appointments. Baby has been head’s up at all 3 appointments, so I started doing inversions to try to get the baby to flip about a month or so ago, and I have now added a Chiropractor to the appointment list. 3 chiropractor appointments so far, but baby was still heads up yesterday during our doula appointmen. Let’s all visualize baby turning over and soon. I don’t know how I could possible fit more appointments into my schedule, but accupuncture is the next thing to try.

Where We’ve Been: November was a traveling month. We did a little last minute trip to Baltimore at the beginning of the month, which was a lovely vacation. We went to the Aquarium and the Walters Museum and saw a friend of mine from Grad School – and met her husband and 5 month old baby, which was great fun. Veteran’s Day weekend, we flew up to Maine (where my wife’s family all lives) for a baby shower. They really went all out with crafts and decorations – It was quite impressive! The next weekend we stayed in town (hooray). Jami’s best friend came down from New Hampshire (delivering the shower gifts from the Maine Shower), and we had our DC shower at our good friend and neighbor’s house, which was a laid-back, good time. Then Thanksgiving weekend we were on the road again – down to my parents’ farm in North Carolina (where the picture above was taken). My brother also flew out from Colorado which was a real treat! It was a great time, but I’m happy to be back home with no travel on the horizon until (months) after the baby comes.

Preparations Completed: The baby’s room is mostly done. All the furniture is in and now I just have to finish putting everything away and getting organized. I’m hoping to have the room pretty much done this weekend – I’ll put up photos when it’s finished. I finished the baby’s quilt, but haven’t started on the wall hangings I’m planning on. We’ll see if those get done before baby arrives! We have a car seat now, but it hasn’t made it into the car yet. Lots of little odds and ends of things to do.

What I’m Reading: Not too much on the pregnancy/childbirth/baby care front. I started Bestfeeding, but haven’t picked it or the baby care books up in weeks. I need to get back to my preparatory reading for sure.

33 Weeks