So tomorrow officially marks Week 13 - the final week of the first trimester!! I am sooo excited to have reached this milestone in my pregnancy! I know a lot of relief comes after the first trimester is under the belt, in more ways than one. I must say that I've been pretty fortunate these last three months though. I've only thrown up two times and the nausea hasn't been bad at all (knock on wood!!). My biggest complaint is FOOD! Things that I used to love are no longer good to me, and it would be great if I could say that things that were gross to me in the past are now good, but that has not been the case. I have a really hard time finding things to eat and I feel like I have wasted so much money buying things that I thought would be good and ended up tasting yucky. I'm really hoping this changes in the next few weeks!
This past weekend was my trip to Illinois and it was AMAZING!! It was a short trip and that is my only complaint! My flight left at 7am Friday morning and arrived in St. Louis at around 10:45. I picked up my rental car and drove the 25-30 minute drive to Illinois to my hotel. My flight from Atlanta to St. Louis was not a smooth ride and by the time I got off the plane I was feeling very sick. I really wanted to meet Nikki and her bridesmaids for mani/pedi's but my tummy was needing some R&R for a bit. So luckily my room was ready and I was able to get some rest before I had to get ready for the rehearsal. I rode with Nikki's cousins (whom I had actually met years and years ago when they came to Alabama to visit) to the rehearsal which was about a 3o minute drive from the hotel. My reunion with Nikki after all these years was something that I will never forget!! Even seeing her mom, brother and sister just brought me to tears!! It's amazing how people can change so much, physically, over the years, but they are still the exact same person you knew back then. That's exactly how I felt, mostly with Nikki's younger brother. I mean, talk about grown up!! I was amazed at how different he looked (mostly because he wasn't a little kid anymore), but also amazed at how the boy hadn't changed A BIT!!
Nikki's mom was exactly as I remembered her, and her sister was the same but all grown up as well. She is a new mommy so I had many questions for her!! Nikki just looked amazing and so happy. I was so glad to meet her husband, Tom. What an awesome guy - he loves Nikki so much and it shows in everything he does. After the rehearsal I rode with Nikki and Tom to the rehearsal dinner, which I was so happy to be a part of! It was a last minute thing that Nikki was able to work out and I'm so thankful that she did! It was really nice getting to meet and get to know her friends. You can really tell how much Nikki is loved so I know she is in good hands and company!
Saturday I rode on the bus that was rented for the wedding party! I was the only person on the bus that wasn't in the wedding so I felt very special! We rode to the ceremony site and tried to stay inside where it was cool as long as we could (you would think the weather would have been a little bit cooler up North, but apparently they were having unusually warm weather - just my luck!). I helped hand out programs before the ceremony and tried to keep myself together while the wedding was going on - trust me, with all these hormones and the fact that I was seeing my childhood best friend get married, it was tough to not be squalling my eyes out! I did cry, of course, but it was such a special ceremony that I was more in awe of the love that these two have for each other. They are a perfect couple and I'm so honored to have witnessed them get married.
After the ceremony, the wedding party hung around to take some pictures before hopping back on the bus to go to an old brewery for more pics. After that, it was on to Ethel's for a couple of Ethel's Buckets. What is Ethel's, you say?? I was asking the same question!! And what in the world is an "Ethel's Bucket"?! It is a wedding day tradition in Highland, Illinois that after the ceremony, the wedding party goes to Ethel's, a quaint, small-town bar, to indulge in a pre-reception "Ethel's Bucket". The bucket consists of many different types of alcohol, probably too many to name! It comes to the table with a bunch of straws, and the wedding party divides into tables and the tables race each other to see who can finish a bucket the fastest! It was a pretty easy contest since one table consisted of four groomsmen and no bridesmaids at all! The contest didn't last very long as everyone was slurping it down as fast as they could! It was a hysterical sight to witnesses and I only wish I could have participated!!
After the buckets-o-fun, the bus headed back to Collinsville where the reception was under way. The guests had been enjoying drinks and hors d'vours (sp?!) while the wedding party had their fun. The reception was so much fun and the food was awesome! It lasted until midnight and I can honestly say that everyone there was probably exhausted from the hours of dancing! It was a bittersweet ending to an amazing two days - saying goodbye to Nikki was really hard as I don't know when I'll be able to see her again!! We know we cannot go as long as we have in the past without seeing each other again, but sometimes life gets in the way of the things we long to do. Hopefully we'll be able to take a time-out in the near future to make some plans together again. All in all, it was an amazing weekend/reunion and one that I will never, ever forget. I'm so happy to have been a part of it all.
A quick baby update - like I said earlier, I am 12 weeks, 6 days along. My next appointment is in July, which will be a quick check-up. I got to hear the heartbeat again last week...what an amazing sound!! I wish I could hear it every day!!! We will be able to find out what it is in August and I'm soooo ready! It is really hard looking at crib bedding when you have no idea what gender you should be looking for!! I really love looking at the girl bedding (obviously!) but deep down, something tells me it's a boy. I don't know why I think that, it's just a feeling that I have. When I am picturing mommy-hood, a boy is always in the picture. I'm always thinking about "my son" and the baby I see in my head is always a boy. Who knows, I could be totally wrong and I'm okay with either one!! But right now I would put money on a boy!! Our baby is currently the size of a large plum!! I am so ready for it to grow some more - I want to feel it moving around!! I can't even imagine what that feels like, but I can imagine how wonderful it must be!
Well, I hope you are all having a great summer so far! I am missing getting to tan - the doctor says to stay as cool as possible, and we all know what the heat is like here in Alabama during the summers. I think if I tried to tan for 15 minutes I would be miserable!! So, I'm white as can be but I'm enjoying it all the same!!