What I Didn’t Expect About Pregnancy, But Probably Should Have

Whether your pregnancy was meticulously planned, medically coaxed, or happened by surprise, one thing is certain – your life will never be the same.  – Catherine Jones

1. The Questions

I realized that my situation (early twenties, married less than a year and pregnant) would raise some eyebrows, as well as questions. I had just always imagined they would be subtle, or just behind my back in general. I was definitely taken back by the boldness of some people and their intrusive questions. Obviously I’m not talking about the well-meaning “how are you feeling?” from other mothers. I’m referring to basically different versions of these questions from people I barely knew:

“It was an accident, wasn’t it?”
“Were you on birth control?”

 

2. The Doctors

Now for the literal poking and prodding. I have been very blessed to say this is my first experience with a need for consistent medical appointments. That being said, I cannot imagine there is anything (except maybe a previous pregnancy) that could make the feel of a cold, latex glove-covered hand through a paper gown feel any less invasive or foreign.  At least uncomfortable questions are more justifiable when asked by a medical professional.

3. Coffee

One of the first things I said when I found out I was pregnant was “But, I can still drink coffee, right?” Little did I know that the sweet, silky taste I looked forward to every morning would take on a bitter, acrid flavor whose very smell  would nauseate me.  Apparently, it’s nature’s way of keeping you from those things you should avoid during your pregnancy like sushi, deli meats, cookie dough etc.

4. Smell

If I had to choose to have one of my senses enhanced, I never would have picked smell. That would be the lamest super power ever, right? Sometimes I like to think it gives me a Sherlockian edge. Not that there is a lot one can deduce with only an amplified sense of smell and dulled brain power such as: who ate leftover lasagna for lunch, who just took a smoke break, who sprayed on some cologne to conceal a smoke break etc.

5. The Tears

Though some people may not believe it, I have always been somewhat of a crybaby. Pregnancy adds some ridiculous fuel to that. It’s like the hormones in my body are urging me to think of awful, sad things at the most inopportune times. The other day I found myself teary-eyed as I was washing dishes. Why? Because I was thinking about the Holocaust. Why was I thinking about the Holocaust? Because the other day my husband suggested The Boy in the Striped Pajamas as we were scrolling Netflix. That’s about as much sense as that is ever going to make.

While these all are things I was not expecting to face when I got pregnant, it does not compare to the excitement I feel when I think about being a mother. It has to be one of the greatest and most terrifying experiences, but I love it. My husband and I are lucky to have support from family and friends everywhere. Thank you all!

 

 

 

So, I Got Married Two Months Ago…

When I was engaged the one piece of advice that everyone wanted to give me was “everything that can go wrong, will go wrong.” Not that I fault these people for trying to keep me from having unrealistic expectations for my wedding, but my husband I got married a little over two months ago and I can’t think of a single thing that  went wrong. It was beyond perfect!

As you can see from the pictures, the colors were yellow and gray with a vintage-literary vibe. Literary in the sense that my flower girl scattered paper heart cut outs from old books, and my program was titled A Tale of Two Hearts, but all joking aside it was amazing. The  ceremony was flawless. I had an excerpt read from a children’s book titled “I Like You” by Sandol Stoddard Warburg had everyone laughing and Frank Sinatra’s “That’s All” was sung  while we lit the unity candle (my hand was shaking so bad I couldn’t light the candle and everyone in the front row was laughing at me.) After the ceremony, we took pictures by a local lake with the bridal party. It was ridiculously  hot, which was hardly a surprise for Southern California in late summer, but after an hour of posing for pictures my husband and I were parched. We stopped by a gas station to pick up some Big Gulps in our wedding attire (lucky for us  they were on the house. Yay!) Unfortunately, when we did arrive at the reception I forgot to take our gas station cokes out of the pictures, and  look a little out of place.  After what seemed like a million family pictures and a battle of the wedding toasts we drove off to our honeymoon.

My day was perfect.  I wish I could take the credit for it and say that it was because of my impeccable planning and attention to detail. Anyone who really knows how frantic I am, knows how far from the truth that is. My day was flawless because I had God and  people who helped me look over all the small details.  My photographers were also the best! If you don’t know where to start with wedding planning, I implore you to get good quality photographers so you can remember your day. I’m glad I did.

Stephanie & Jesse Wedding [Captured by Studio Cline] Decor 018 Stephanie & Jesse Wedding [Captured by Studio Cline] Procession 065

Stephanie & Jesse Wedding [Captured by Studio Cline] Ceremony 039 Stephanie & Jesse Wedding [Captured by Studio Cline] Ceremony 077

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I Love Gossip Girl and Don’t Care Who Knows It

Thanks to Netflix millions of us have happily succumbed to the dangers of having entire television series and movies at the touch of a remote. It was through this drug I stumbled upon Gossip Girl.

Chuck, Blair, Serena and NateGossip Girl, seeing the title gave me flashbacks to high school when the young adult book series was popular. It seemed like every girl carried around a copy of Cecily Von Zeigesar’s books like a hot accessory, but I was never really interested in reading them. Pictures of girls in plaid skirts whispering to each other above titles like All I Want Is Everything didn’t appeal to me at a time when I had Orwell and Golding chapters summaries to turn in for Lit.

Then the show came out. I was definitely-not-in-a-million-years allowed to watch it. We had strict TV standards in our house. The only shows we watched were Jeopardy, Survivor and The Amazing Race. A show like Gossip Girl with common themes of underage drinking and drug use would not last five minutes under my parent’s roof. Thus, all talk of “Blair” and “Serena” was something I was completely out of the loop on in high school.

Now, four years out of high school I find sucked into Von Zeigesar’s world of the Upper East Side. Why?

  • I’m sure part of it is a case of I-Gotta-Do-All-The-Things-I-Wasn’t-Allowed-To-Do-Growing-Up-itis.  It’s a pretty common condition among children with strict upbringings, but if my acting out is watching a show about social climbing teens, then I’d have to say that my case is fairly mild.
  • The Clothes! While Mad Men was the first show to draw me in strictly on costume design, it was the script and story line that kept me a loyal viewer through the seasons. With Gossip Girl, the clothes are definitely still a strong pull for me coming into season four. Part of the allure of Gossip Girl is the portrayal of these characters with ridiculously extravagant lives, and what the characters wearing is always going to play a big part in that.

 

  • The soundtrack. I love everything about it. They’ve had Florence and the Machine guest star along with others, and with bands like The Bravery, The Kooks, Cold War Kids playing in the background, of course I fell in love!

 

  • The subtle nods to literature and classic movies. I appreciate that all the episode titles are plays on works of literature or popular films, such as The Serena Also Rises and Damien Darko. Also, one of Blair’s redeeming qualities (and she doesn’t have many) is her appreciation of classic movies. There are a few episodes that begin in Miss.  Waldorf’s nightmares which are almost always plays on old movies like My Fair Lady, Breakfast at Tiffany’s and Wait Until Dark.
  • Chuck Bass. ’nuff said.

My poor husband married me thinking I had a high standard for quality entertainment (which I still believe is true!), he’s had to learn that every girl needs her cheesy, totally-predictable, unbelievable, soap opera dramatic, chick-flick shows to watch. He’s also getting pretty excited that almost done  with all the episodes of Gossip Girl (too bad he doesn’t know I have Pretty Little Liars next on the queue!)

You know you love me,

XOXO

Honestly Modest 😉

From California Girl to Pittsburgher

The best thing about moving is starting over.  I loved the “clean slate” feeling.  I loved the fact that nobody knew me.  Nobody asked me what I was planning to do with my education degree.  I don’t find myself explaining that between the limits of my degree and utter lack of desire to explain punctuation to ungrateful high-schoolers, teaching is no where in my near future. (Looks like I got that off my chest! haha)

On the other hand, there’s the part of moving where I have to figure out where everything is.  Luckily, I had my husband to show me around, but Pittsburgh was quite a move.  I realized that I had to not only get used to a new city, but a new culture.

pittsburgh

  • Sports culture.  For the small time that I cleaned houses, I came to the conclusion that everyone has framed picture of some Pittsburgh stadium in their home. I’ve never lived somewhere with such loyalty to local teams. Californians don’t like one specific team when it comes to anything. Not everyone in San Diego was a Chargers fan, not all people in LA like the Dodgers etc.
  • Driving. I live off William Flynn Hwy, that ‘s what all the signs say anyway. Nobody calls it William Flynn Hwy.  They call it Route 8. I have yet to see any signs that say Route 8. Whatever.  Not to mention the lack of left turn lanes. As a newbie driver, there is nothing more terrifying than stopping my car with my left turn signal on  as cars maneuver their way around me at  forty miles per hour while I wait for a break in traffic big enough to make my turn. Not to mention the fact that now I have to worry about deer jumping in front of my car when I drive home from work, that’s definitely a first.
  • City pronunciation. Not too far from where I live are the cities of Carnegie and Versailles. Carnegie is not pronounced like Andrew Carnegie, or like a Carnegie Library, it is instead pronounced car-NEG-ee.  One would also assume that Versailles is pronounced just like the palace in France. False. It’s said ver-SAILS.
  • Talking the Talk. I really don’t know everything about the “Pittsburgh accent”, but there are some things I have noticed:

– the long O’s. “So, I went hoooome at four-thirty.”

– It’s not “you guys” or “y’all” it’s “yins”. For real.

– The sentences that sound like questions. Some people have this upward inflection at the end of their sentences. It makes “You went to the gym already” sound like “You went to the gym already?”

And, I love it here! It is beautiful. Every route is a scenic route. The people are really nice (When I’m not wearing my Dodger shirt anyway.) Pittsburgh is a great city; I’m excited to make a life here.

What are some new things you had to get used to after moving?

Word count: 340 Draft saved at 9:38:41 pm. Last edited by honestlymodest on September 24, 2013 at 7:00 pm

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Things Christian College Girls Say: Dress

“I had to wear a scarf today cause this is so not three fingers.”

“I hope she doesn’t check that my slit is pinned, not sown.”

“Pretty sure that girl never wears nylons.”

“Wait, does wearing heels make my skirt look longer or shorter? I forgot.”

“You know, some girls just shouldn’t do the whole no-makeup no-filter thing.”

“Bless her heart, someone needs to teach her how to walk in those heels.”

“White tights should not be worn by anyone who is old enough to read.”

“Do I think I can get away with wearing a skirt under this dress?”

“She dresses like she’s on tour; last time I checked that’s not a compliment.”

“I’m rocking black tights today cause this skirt is a little on the short side.”

“Her skin was showing through those tights. I mean she was practically wearing fishnets!”

“Big necklaces and scarves cover a multitude of sins.”

“Is that guy in college this semester?”    “I don’t think so. He has facial hair.”

“Some guys need to realize that skinny jeans should only be worn by skinny guys.”

“Oh, you mean that guy in our class with the preacher part?”

“Pretty sure the only guys who wear polo shirts tucked into their pants have grandchildren or  a tuition bill due this Wednesday.”

 

 

Things Christian College Girls Say: Dating

  • “Well, they’re not in the ‘I like you’ stage yet.”
  • “They’re just talking.”
  • “Oh my word! I’m a girlfriend!!!”
  • “They sat together last night in church, and they ate lunch together this afternoon. They are so dating.”
  • “I heard she gave him a store-bought card. It must have been a really bad date.”
  • “I saw that couple in the post office hallway. They were so close they were practically kissing. it was so gross!”
  • “Do I have to make him a card for a chapel date?”
  • “You should make him cookies.”
  • “I’m never gonna get married.”
  • “She’s only staying for her Masters cause she’s single.”
  • “It’s so hard to find stuff for him that doesn’t say ‘love’.”
  • “Goodnight. I like you. ” “I like you too.”

Four Annoying Girls & How to Deal With Them

  1. The “Giggly” Girls: I think Audrey Hepburn said it best in Sabrina when she is hiding in a tree watching her crush flirt with one of these ditzy types. “I hate girls who giggle all the time” Me too, Audrey. Me too.
    1. How to Spot One:
      1. They are overly optimistic, and are most likely smiling.
      2. They or their friends probably work for the Dean of Women’s office.
      3. Usually morning people. Freshman usually sing in the morning, most likely a Disney song.
    2. How to Deal:
      1. DON’T: Use sarcasm. Most of the time it will just go over their heads. Stay away from comments that you’re going to have to spend more time explaining than delivering.
      2. DO: Use basic words and open your eyes unnaturally wide, while adding an occasional smile or head nod. Mirroring body language makes for more effective communication.English: Studio publicity portrait for film Sa...
  2. Me-Monsters/ One-Uppers: Comedian, Brian Regan aptly labeled this type the “me-monsters”, and I couldn’t think of a more appropriate moniker for this self-absorbed sort. Everybody has a Me-Monster in their life. You can spot them as soon as you start a conversation. Their injury is just a little more severe than the one you experienced, their student-teaching is a little harder than what you have to teach, their day has been just a little more eventful than your day.
    1. How to Spot One:
      1. For every story you share, they have a more severe, more extreme experience that will always top your story.
      2. They only use first-person pronouns.
    2. How to Deal:
      1. DO: Make the whole conversation about them to begin with. Don’t try to share any personal information unless you want it belittled and pushed to the side by some bigger and better experience.
      2. DON’T: Try to “One-Up” their story. They will think of some relative or close friend that has a crazier experience. This will go on until you let them win.
      3. DO: Just walk away. Watch Kristen Wiig’s “Penelope” skits on SNL. You’ll laugh at this exaggerated portrayal of Me-Monsters and be reminded that nobody likes them.
  3. The “Selfie”-Obsessed: Pretty people who feel the need to remind you how good-looking they are by posting at least one picture of themselves a week.
      1. How to Spot One:
        1. On Facebook:
          1. They change their profile picture at least once a week.
          2. They might down play some compliment in the comments section.
            1. “You look gorgeous!”
            2. Reply: “Oh my goodness! I look so gross in this pic!”
        2. On Instagram:
          1. They always take a self-portrait to document menial events in their lives.
            1. “I really need coffee (duck face)”
            2. Inspirational quote + self-portrait
          2. Most of their feed is face shots.
          3. Most of their pictures receive a considerable amount of likes.
      2. How to Deal:
        1. DON’T: Like these pictures. As you can imagine, this only encourages more “Selfie” behavior and posts in the future.
        2. DO: remove these people from your feed if they annoy you. You can keep them on your feed for a good laugh.
  4. The Strained Personality: People who try to be funny/smart/cocky but just aren’t.
    1. How to Spot One:
      1. Most likely this person will try to use unnecessary hashtags on Facebook in an attempt to be witty.
      2. They misuse hashtags by applying spaces between words or apostrophes.
        1. #I’mSuchANerd
        2. #Smart Girl Problems
      3. They misuse Meme Humor in an attempt to be culturally relevant.
        1. The Most Interesting Man in the World
        2. Conspiracy Keanu
        3. Bad Luck Brian
      1. How to Deal:
        1. DON’T: encourage this behavior by liking these posts.
        2. DON’T: Remind them that hashtags are irrelevant on Facebook. You won’t be the first or the last to point this out.
        3. DO: Sometimes the “Do not show in News Feed” is the answer to everything.