Friday, 27 May 2011

Week 38

Today Maru chan and I are at week 38! 2 weeks till my due date. 

This week has quite literally flown by. We have had lots of visitors and of course there is ROXY here to entertain us. She is a lovely dog. The other night she cracked us up by managing to get herself shut in the garage when she sneaked in there and because it was dark my mum didn't notice her. She was just hanging around the dog biscuit shelf hoping some might fall down. Then she and Sam were lying on the floor muzzles touching, but then they got a bit ratty and started pushing each other with their muzzles, trying to claim that exact spot of floor. She likes to get up at 7am, an hour earlier than Sam. 
So how are Maru chan and I doing? Very well thanks. In the last week or so, I have noticed a definite loosening of the hips. I get a lot of pinched nerves there now. That isn't so fun, but usually it happens when I am standing doing something at home and I can curse and no-one hears me. But increasingly it is happening when I am just sitting down and Maru chan is writhing around/beating me to a pulp from the inside. But honestly that is my only problem so far so really have nothing to complain about. In the last week 4 people have said to me that I don't look like I am 2 weeks away from my due date - as in my tummy is kind of small. Maybe they were just expecting me to be massive. Personally I am happy with my tummy size, but can't help but be slightly concerned that am now not big enough! Thighs and butt on the other hand, another story altogether. 
As of today my tummy looks like this:

A month ago it looked like this:

Saturday, 21 May 2011

Sam's New Friend

Yesterday Sam's friend ROXY the chocolate Labrador arrived to stay with us for the next 3 weeks. They have met each other once before and got along fine. Last night they were both terribly excited and did a lot of playing.  Roxy is 2 and Sam is nearly 8 so a bit of an age and maturity difference but they seem to be getting along very well. It's going to be an interesting 3 weeks!
An unusual quiet moment!

Friday, 20 May 2011

Ikebana... NZ style

I did some ikebana yesterday for the first time in a long time. My sister came up and bought some of the stuff that is growing around her house. I also improvised with a few things out of my mum's little garden here.

These are not my best works but they look interesting.

Thursday, 19 May 2011

Nearly week 37

So tomorrow will be Week 37. Only 3-5 weeks to go. 3 weeks. I guess I can handle that. 5 weeks...please let it all be over before then. Everyone keeps saying that one way or another, at some time this baby has to come out. Still a little in disbelief that we are not far from the point where Maru chan will be a whole separate person and I will be a mother! At about 11pm every night when kickboxing practice in my tummy starts up, I am relieved that it won't be too much longer till I get kind of get my body back. But then sometimes the kicks are kind of cute and I think I will miss our special little relationship. 

When I found out that we were finally having a baby, I said to DH that I wanted this baby to be an Eco Baby. By that I meant, that we shouldn't go out and buy all new everything - tempting though it is! But borrow or buy as much as possible second hand. Luckily for us, being a bit challenged in the fertility department meant that pretty much everyone we know has already had at least one if not two children and so we quickly had offers of all kinds of things from friends in Japan, who were pleased to have some space back in their tiny storage closets.  I "may" have splashed out on some cute clothes from NZ but in my defense, they were all on sale! Opposite seasons rock. 

Then we had the earthquake and the nuclear power station up the road had a melt down etc. I decided to decamp to NZ. For a second time, I have been shown amazing generosity by friends and even relative strangers. Someone I have never met, who works with my sister gave me a beautiful bassinet for Maru chan to sleep in. Someone else is giving us a changing table. Not to mention all the great clothes, car seat and other paraphernalia my friend P gave me. The only thing we have had to buy new is disposable stuff like nappies, creams and what not. NZ also has the most amazing array of great reusable cloth nappies which I am planning to use after Maru chan is out of the 7-10 nappies a day stage that newborns apparently go through. The environment will have to forgive me those disposable diapers and the energy and resources it cost to make them. At first I was skeptical about using cloth (keep in mind I still haven't actually used them yet!) but after researching the issue, running the numbers and thinking about our lifestyle in Japan and how we wash clothes (using recycled water from the bath tub, only drying on the line in a very sunny part of Japan at our house that has solar panels on the roof etc), I decided that it would work for us and since doing the laundry is strangely the one chore I don't mind I have decided to try using them.

So, only 3 more weeks until DH gets here and on his bday too! Now remember everyone, we are putting it out there to the universe that Maru chan will be born from the evening of the 11th of June or sometime shortly after! :)

Sunday, 15 May 2011

Things to do in Nelson

Yesterday was beautiful here in Nelson and since it was a Saturday I wanted to go into town to the weekly Saturday markets. I am always very impressed with the products one can buy there and there is always lots of yummy looking food, like bread, cheeses, jams, honey to name some of things. Yesterday was a bit of a disappointment as there were not so many store holders there as last time and we only bought some vegetables. 

After the market we went to the river with Sam. The Maitai river runs through Nelson and has a really beautiful leafy walkway beside it. Sam did his sniffing, stick bashing, grass munching and had a swim. The river was a bit high due to the rain overnight but when it is calm he likes to jump in and float down the river! 

After our walk I was having a "low blood sugar level" moment so we went to the Suter Art Gallery's cafe. They have extremely yummy food and coffee there and lovely outlook to a beautiful botanical gardens. I was in heaven! I had an urge to take a photo of my lemon tart I was having, but realised my camera was at home. 

When DH gets here it will be nice to take him to those places, even though it might be a bit cooler.
He also wants to go to this boutique organic brewery: Founders.
I'm sure we will need to go to a winery or two, depending on when Maru chan decides to make an entrance to the world.

Speaking of Maru chan. All is well at the moment. I had a tour of the hospital the other day which has a very new maternity area. It's quite compact but looks very comfortable and has everything someone in my position should need. Maru has been running out of room recently and the kicking gets quite violent and I wonder if the baby might just burst out of my stomach at times! 
Yesterday was a big day for me (lots of walking and outside activities) but I managed not to take a nap and was really tired when I went to bed. So tired in fact I barely remember the huge thunder storm we had last night that kept my mum and Sam (who is terrified of thunder) awake. 

I have been looking at the news in Japan on the internet. Am not heartened by any of the news from the power plant in Fukushima. They are saying one of the reactors "may" have had a meltdown, and 2 others might suffer the same fate. Argh. Then there are the thousands and thousands of people still living in public shelters, more than 2 months after the quake. It really is atrocious. Thankfully now in NZ I have to go looking for news about Japan so I can avoid stressing myself out about this most of the time, especially since there is absolutely nothing I can do about it.

Wednesday, 11 May 2011


Well I am now in Nelson! Finally settled in at my Mum's place and will be here for the next 2 months or so. We have the mod cons of broadband internet which means I have been able to talk to DH properly for the first time since I left Japan 6 weeks or so ago.  
My mum lives very close to the hospital. This will be a good thing if I am like my mother and pop this baby out in about 2 hours from woah to go like she did. I have a midwife sorted out. I love love love it how she comes to my house for our appointments! I was seriously dreading the 3 hour waits at my clinic back in Japan when I got really really pregnant as they are frustrating enough. And especially now that we are getting to the once a week stage of the game. Heaven! And I love it how in NZ my opinion matters. Do I want my child to have a vitamin K injection? Would I like to take the placenta home with me? Personally I want what is best for Maru chan, whatever that may be but it is nice that they ask you and try to follow your wishes if they can. 
I have also been to a prenatal aquarobics class which was pretty hard out actually but I enjoyed it and enjoyed being with lots of other pregnant women who were chatty and friendly. We bonded over the physical exertion as much as the fact that we all have huge tummies. I liked not being the sole foreigner, being able to compare tummy sizes and see I am not huge but kind of average! That is a nice feeling after being in Japan and seeing tiny tummy people all the time and sitting in silence for 3 hours waiting for 5 minutes with the dr.

I started working again last night at my online job in Japan. I was a bit worried about getting back into it after having 2 months off, but it was fine and it turns out I haven't forgotten how to teach English! There is a 3 hour time difference which means I am a bit tired but have nothing else to do all day so taking a nap is no biggie.

It turns out we have quite a few relatives, friends and acquaintances here in Nelson and we have had a very social week catching up with people, lunching etc. We are not from Nelson, my mother only moved here last winter, so it is kind of strange to have this social circle already waiting for me. I'm so used to having a pitiful one or having to go and make my own from scratch, again.

Thursday, 5 May 2011

Back Online


My mum and I arrived in Nelson on Monday night and the internet was finally hooked up this morning! After how many weeks of trudging down to the local library every morning to use theirs and talk to DH, this is a real novelty! 

Our move up to Nelson was supposed to happen on Tuesday but on Monday night I started having lower stomach and back pain that didn't seem to go away. So we called the midwife on duty that night and went down to the clinic. She put me on the fetal heart monitor machine for a while and since the pain had gone by then decided that I wasn't in labour and was probably just an upset stomach or some other reason for the pain. She said that she didn't want us to stay in Westport as they are only able to cater for women who are full term with uncomplicated second pregnancies. The nearest bigger hospital an hour and a half away doesn't have a neonatal unit nor a pediatrician so if I did go into labour that night, it would mean a helicopter flight to a bigger hospital in Christchurch or Nelson since I am only 35 weeks tomorrow. 
We had packed our stuff into the car that afternoon and were pretty much ready to leave town anyway so we went home and got our stuff and headed off into the night (it was already 9pm) in the rain to drive the 3 hours to Nelson. In hindsight this was not the best idea and I was personally against it as the route we had to take is a very quiet country road and I had images of us with a flat tire and no body coming along to help us (not that I don't know how to change a tire, but we did have a car FULL of stuff and it was raining hard). But we did get here safely at 1am. 

Nelson has quite a big hospital with all the whistles and bells a pregnant woman should technically need. Yesterday I met the woman who I decided I will take on as my midwife or lead carer for the rest of my pregnancy and the birth. So that is a big relief to get that sorted out. Now it is just a matter of getting the last few things together for Maru chan's arrival and hoping that it happens not long after DH gets here from Japan.