You may have noticed that Aaron and I love to travel. Last year, we covered Ireland, Alaska, and San Diego, with smaller trips to New York, Philly, and other East Coast destinations thrown in the mix. This year, we’ve already done Chicago and Germany, plus those same smaller coastline getaways.
Since we have to plan for our impending child at some point, we’ve decided to take a break from traveling for the rest of the year. I’m apparently supposed to go into “nesting mode,” but tell that to the entire room of unpacked boxes in our new house. Or to all the wall hangings piled on the floor of our dining room. The next six months should be interesting.
A few of you have asked me to chronicle our recent trip to Germany, similar to my travel guide for Ireland from last year. However, Aaron and I did a lot less sightseeing on our Germany trip, and a lot more “living like a local.” It was AWESOME, but not necessarily the right material for a travel guide. If you’d like a short list, here it is:
- Go to Heidelberg. The locals will make fun of you because “[eye roll] All Americans love Heidelberg,” but that doesn’t stop it from being the one of the cutest towns in Europe.
- At some point, you must order:
- Maultaschen (German dumplings)
- Kaesespaetzle (German mac & cheese topped with caramelized onions)
- Schweineshaxe (Crazy cut of pork, usually served with sauerkraut & potatoes)
- Flammkuchen (German flatbread that will change your life)
- Drive fast on the autobahn.
As for the rest, I leave you to forge your own path.
Speaking of Germany, I was inspired to *finally* sit down and write a non-Bachelor post today, thanks to one of the lovely guests at the wedding that brought us overseas in the first place. As I was making my way to the bathroom to pee for the 9,476th time during the reception (fun fact: it’s not just in the third trimester that your bladder stops working), a beautiful German woman stopped me on the stairway. “You have the best blog!” she exclaimed (in English). I must’ve given her a quizzical look, because she said, “You’re the granny right?” Ah, to be recognized internationally as The Granny! Dreams do come true, folks.
She went on to explain that she and her friends read Generation grannY, and were very concerned when I took a hiatus from writing at the beginning of this year. A following in Germany?? I was pretty flattered, to say the least. And talk about some major motivation to continue writing! So, thank you Julia, for the kind words and for lighting a fire under my butt to continue putting my thoughts to paper. Or screen. Whatever. You encouraged me more than you may have realized.
[For any of you who struggle with fertility, I will continually have you on my heart. I hope you read any of my pregnancy posts only if they bring you joy. If not, just skip them and join me back for Bachelor time or other non-baby related posts. Your mental and emotional wellbeing is of utmost importance, and I hope to be as sensitive to that as possible.]
I told myself that when I’m pregnant, I won’t write tons of stuff about being pregnant because I don’t want people to feel like I’m pregnant for five years. You know how it seemed like Kim Kardashian was pregnant for a full decade with North West because there were so many pictures and stories following her pregnancy? It was like, “Dang, is she STILL pregnant??” And then with Saint West, you felt like you woke up one day and she randomly had another child. Well, that’s because the second one was barely documented. Same goes for Princess Charlotte, Britney Spears’ second kid with Kevin Federline, and the biological child of Brangelina that wasn’t a twin.
But, shockingly, when you’re growing a human inside of you, it feels like a really natural thing to talk about. Especially since it affects my #1 favorite activity (eating) and my #1 least favorite activity (getting up in the middle of the night to go to the bathroom). My days consist of explaining why I can’t have the fried egg on my Huevos Rancheros, Googling which kind of cheeses are pasteurized, and scanning for public restrooms. I learned exactly 2 German words last week: Damen (“women”…written on the door of restrooms) and Danke (“thank you”…for letting me use your bathroom even though it’s not technically for public use).
Needless to say, being pregnant just kind of works its way into 85% of your thoughts when it happens to you, making it really difficult to not talk about. I don’t know how interesting it is for you to know that I almost puke every time I brush my teeth or that my pelvis area hurts like crazy whenever I sneeze, but I want to tell you those things. I want to tell you that I’ve gained more weight than I’m supposed to, and loathe post-partum “bounce back” pictures on Instagram more than anything in the world. I want to ask if there’s something wrong with me for not being all that eager to find out if it’s a boy or a girl. We’ll find out in August, and that’ll be fun, but I’m WAY more excited for that ultrasound in order to find out how my baby is growing, rather than trying to spy for a lil’ baby penis.
I want to let you know that it’s okay to touch my stomach even though it’s mostly made up of carbs right now. I’m not weird about that at all. I’d like to brag about my husband for giving me back and foot massages even though I’m only in my second trimester. I want you to know that I will still love my dog just as much once the baby is here, no matter what everyone says.
You may be interested in finding out if I’ve had any weird cravings. No, I haven’t. Perhaps you’re wondering if we’ve picked out a name. Yes, only for a girl. A boy name is still up in the air. Have I started decorating the nursery? Nope! Have we started researching the extensive inventory of baby stuff we’ll need? Not at all. Do I have a birth plan (nope), am I interested in essential oils (kind of), will I have an epidural (highly likely), will my baby be vaccinated (yes), will I make my own baby food (no), will I breast feed (if I can), will I have a maternity shoot (ehhh haven’t decided), will I let other people watch the baby at a young age (absolutely, I’m all about the village mentality), will I still recap The Bachelor (probably not the season that starts 3 days after my due date), are we still getting a second dog (not at the moment. We gave Noma’s little fur brother to one of my best friends before we even met him…bittersweet, but he’s thriving in his new home).
Other answers to common questions:
- Yes! I know our new house will all of a sudden feel much smaller with tons of baby stuff everywhere!
- You bet I’m sleeping a lot right now since I know I won’t have this luxury much longer.
- Aaron will probably be here for the birth, but if he does miss it, I’m still grateful to have a husband who serves in our country’s military.
- I’m feeling much better than I did in the first trimester, thanks!
- I did quit the country band I sang in because I can’t stay up until 2am anymore. But I’m putting together an acoustic set for earlier gigs!
- I actually don’t miss wine very much! My body isn’t craving it at all…strange, I know.
- No, Noma hasn’t seemed to realize that there’s a human in my stomach yet. But I think she’ll catch on once we can feel the baby moving.
- I literally do not care at all if it’s a boy or a girl.
- Yes, I’m journaling in a devotional book, as well as in a prompted journal that my stepdad gave me, which I’ll give to my baby when he/she is older!
- Of COURSE I’m absolutely terrified to give birth.
- I am very aware that I have no idea what I’m doing, which is why I cried to a nurse on the phone yesterday. That was cute.
Well, I think that just about covers it! I hope you feel up to speed! My recent non-pregnancy thoughts have revolved around the stupidity of fidget spinners, why we can’t all just agree that Donald Trump is not a good person without filling our hearts with so much hate toward an entire group of people (be it conservatives OR liberals), why Hidden Figures didn’t get more press because it’s an AWESOME movie, and whether or not Bo Dukes and Ryan Duke actually killed Tara Grinstead. (Up and Vanished, anyone?)
See you Tuesday for a new Bachelorette recap! I’m 95% sure Matt and Adam are going home, but I’ve been wrong before!