Traditions

I guess I have never really thought about how important traditions are to me. I never really thought about traditions before and didn't really think I had many before moving here. There are always those family traditions that we all celebrate around the holidays and special occasions, but what else is there?

After having moved to France and especially since getting pregnant, I have been thinking about traditions a lot. I have been thinking about what kind of traditions we are going to pass on to our son, and what traditions are we going to share as a family? It is difficult to think about since we both live so far away from both of our families, and our cultural and family traditions are so different from one another's. And not to mention that living in a foreign country makes it so difficult to try and impart any traditions that we used to have as children. Some things just don't exist here, and we have to take into consideration the traditions of the local culture and how we would want to impart that on our family.

The are two great things that the French have invented. One being the french sidewalk cafes with their terraces outside on the sidewalks. It is such a great experience to go out and just sit and people watch and enjoy the morning. There are people drinking their coffees, reading the newspapers, books, or just chatting up with friends. And of course, the second greatest things invented by the french the Pain au Chocolate (bread with chocolate), which is like a chocolate filled croissant. All of these delicious little pastries that are so perfect for a light breakfast. There is nothing better in this world than a warm pain au chocolate right out of the oven from the corner boulangerie (bakery).

Taking both of these two things together are what make mine and Cornels' Saturday morning so wonderful. Every Saturday morning we wake up early, head over to the boulangerie down the road from us and buy fresh pain au chocolates.  We then head over downtown to Place Jaude to Garden Ice Cafe to enjoy our Grand Cafe and Grande Cafe Creme.  



After having done this for the better part of a year, we no longer even have to order.  We take a seat outside on the terrance and within minutes the server comes over with our coffees.  We talk and enjoy the people watching while enjoying our delicious breakfast.  Since getting pregnant, this is the one day a week where I get to partake in many guilty pleasures, such as caffeine and sweets.

I can't wait to continue this tradition with our son and take him down to Place Jaude and let him suck on a pain au chocolate while we enjoy our breakfast.  Hopefully this will be something we can share as a family as long as we remain in France.


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23 Weeks

Well I am now officially beginning my 6th month. The last one in my third trimester! My how time flies!! I only have 17 short weeks to go until we get to meet our son (whose name is still undetermined and TBA at a later date).

As for the baby...according to the experts:  This week the baby (who is around 8 inches long and just over a pound) begins to pack on the pounds, and by the end of the month, the baby will be double his weight.  Right now, the organs and bones can still be seen through the skin, which has a red hue thanks to the developing blood veins and arteries.

How far along? 22 weeks 5 days
Maternity clothes? I am half and half on this.  I still have not purchased a single item of maternity clothes and thankfully I still have dresses and bottoms that still fit, so I have officially met my goal of waiting to buy maternity clothes until I arrived in the US.  I have however put on two maternity shirts given to me by Pilar this week, frankly because they are very cute and very comfortable and I don't feel like I'm showing my belly to everyone at work.  But I hope to pick up a couple of pair of work pants and some things to get me through the last three months of this pregnancy.
Stretch marks? Nothing yet, but still lathering up in cocoa butter.
Sleep: I have been extremely tired this week with work and just plain fatigue, that I have been sleeping through everything.  Hopefully this trend continues at least for a while.  My magnesium pills have been helping and I haven't had a leg cramp in the middle of the night for a while.
Food cravings: I have been very disappointed in the cravings category.  I was really expecting to crave some strange things, and my diet has stayed pretty normal.  I did start eating sardines this week (trust me, not a craving) but to increase my intake of Omega 3.  I am just gearing up my taste buds for next week!
Gender: Still a boy
Labor Signs: Nothing yet
Belly Button in or out? Still very sad to have lost my belly button ring, but my belly button is still very much in.  Let's hope it stays that way for a while!
What I miss: I miss being able to wear my jeans!
What I am looking forward to: As if this is even a question this week, I am looking forward to our big trip back to the states!  I get to see my great friends and spend time with my family!  What else could a knocked-up girl ask for?  Also, we have our first practical birthing course this Friday in which I will learn how to breathe.  How have I survived 28 years without knowing how!
Weekly Wisdom: Nothing this week...check back again next week.  I have decided that this will be my standard response until I can come up with something better.

I have come to the conclusion that I have a very sweet family.  They have been so amazing with the family and I am very lucky.

First I am amazed by my sister.  We have never really had a very close relationship, but I think her new nephew will change all that.  She knitted the baby, the cutest cap ever!  In the shape of an apple.  I am not much for knitting, but I am sure that it has taken her a long time to put it together.


And also my mom and my aunts who are throwing me a baby shower back home, since I won't get the chance to have one here.  Even from the invitations, I can already tell that a lot of love has gone into the event, and I feel so lucky!

And now...here is the weekly belly update at 22 weeks.  The last week in my fifth month!  Enjoy.


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