Sunday, March 30, 2014

Twenty-two Weeks at Trash Beach

This beach is anything but trashy. Well, I mean it's called that because all kinds of trash sometimes washes up on it from who knows where, but it is still so beautiful! And it's a sea glass PARADISE. Victor and I brought home at least 15 pounds of it today. A Sunday afternoon very well spent.
 Just some stuff about being 22 weeks pregnant. This week was big because Victor finally felt the baby kick! It made him so so happy: I think he's been feeling left out that I'm the only one that had felt him move ha ha. So that was great. I also am at a point where I can't button up my regular pants. Yikes.

But the thing I have been thinking a lot about is how the baby can hear voices and sounds now: mostly mine.

Soooo that puts a lot of pressure on me! I don't want my baby to only remember my voice as a yelling, arguing or whining voice. I raise my voice far too easily in an argument. I get defensive far too easily. Sometimes I whine far too easily. It's just so crazy that my little baby is subject to all of that! Well, also my dear husband, and he doesn't deserve it either, so I'm really trying to work on it.

I re-read a favorite talk of mine today because I need frequent reminding on the way I should be speaking. Jeffrey R. Holland: he is just always so spot on!

"The voice that bears profound testimony, utters fervent prayer, and sings the hymns of Zion can be the same voice that berates and criticizes, embarrasses and demeans, inflicts pain and destroys the spirit of oneself and of others in the process. 'Out of the same mouth proceedeth blessing and cursing,' James grieves. 'My brethren [and sisters], these things ought not so to be.'"

So, it's a bit of a tangent from just telling you how I'm 22 weeks pregnant, but it's some thought for your Sunday, so I hope it helps in some way. Have a great week!

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Ranting About Reading

^^doesn't have much to do with my rant, but it's funny ha ^^

Sometimes I'm a hypocrite when it comes to how I judge books. 

I was an English major, so I have read quite the plethora of genres, with all kind of content you can imagine. I took an entire course just on Toni Morrison's novels, and when my mom turned on my Kindle mistaking it for hers, she was all "what in the world are you reading?!?" So I generally have a higher tolerance for things like language, violence and sex in books: WITHIN REASON. (Like I never ever plan on reading 50 shades of grey crap because that is blatantly a porno for women so I know I would never read it)

And yet, when I know I'm reading something by, oh let's say, a Mormon author, I suddenly become such a prude ha ha. And you want to know why? Because they should know better! (In my opinionated opinion, anyway.)

A couple of examples. I HATED the book Ender's Game. Shocker I know, since so many people worship it. I'm just not a fan of sci-fi, but what really bugged me was all the crude language (not just swear words) that Orson Scott Card had his characters using (children, which I thought was completely unrealistic). Card is a Mormon, and Mormons really try to encourage good language. And in the book, I thought most of it was so unnecessary. So that's why it bothered me!

Now Twilight. Uggghh. Well there's a lot I could rant about, but Mormon Stephanie Meyer just kept pushing the limit on what she could get away with regarding the more intimate scenes between the two main characters.  Which remember, is a 17 year old girl and a 200 year old vampire. Come on, Stephanie Meyer, you know better. 

Am I being completely unreasonable? Should Mormon authors be able to just write whatever they want?? Nevermind, I don't care if I'm being unreasonable. It just bothers me. It has for years. 

But along the lines of talking about Twilight, I just finished the Divergent series and the biggest problem I have with both of these series is that they both were originally targeted to young adult (aka middle and high schoolers) and then as they exploded in popularity the authors used it to their advantage and turned them into adult books that should not be being read by middle schoolers. With Twilight, it was mostly just sex, but with Divergent it was sex and violence. And all of this with the main characters being just 16 and 17 years old. 

Of course I have read worse, but as I'm reading and thinking in the back of my head that these books are being targeted to a younger audience, it drives me nuts! These books are being stocked in middle school libraries, which means that twelve year old sixth graders could be reading it. Not okay in my opinion. I was talking about it with a friend of mine (who is not Mormon, and much less conservative than I am) and she completely agreed with me. She said as she was reading Twilight at the same time as her 13 year old niece, thinking it would be fun, and that it really started to bother her thinking that her little niece is reading that stuff too. 

So what do you think? Where do you draw the line? I wanted to spew all this stuff out to see if I am alone in this world. If I am just a hypocrite, because I read it, or if I am justified in my ranting. But either way it feels good to get it off my chest.

 I just love ranting ha ha. So thanks for reading!

Monday, March 24, 2014

Twenty-one Weeks in a Poppy Field.

Okinawa never ceases to amaze us with beautiful locations. This gorgeous little field by the sea was a perfect spot for a Sunday afternoon walk with my man. 

Definitely noticing more changes with my body this week. Bigger belly. And all you have to do is look at the last picture to see what else is getting bigger ha ha. But I am having a grand old time being pregnant, meaning I don't really have any complaints. Yet. So I'm just enjoying it! I feel little boy move and he's pretty well behaved. Never bothers me at night. Yet. 

I don't really have any crazy cravings, I just eat normal and I feel normal. I feel like this is boring info! 

But I will say this. I admit, I may love a little too much my husband's willingness to get up and get anything or do anything I ask. Foot rubs, back rubs, ice water runs downstairs when we're already in bed. I married a gem. He is the sweetest and I sure am grateful for him. He is so excited to be a dad, and we talk and pray a lot about the parents we hope to be. I am soaking up these days of having him all to myself, though. ;)

Sunday, March 23, 2014

Girls Trip to Ishigaki Island

This past week, I took a little girls trip to the Yaeyama Islands, which are Japan's most southern islands: really close to Taiwan. Ishigaki Island was incredibly beautiful. A lot more mountainous and lush than Okinawa: it reminded me of Hawaii. 

While it was beautiful, unfortunately it wasn't quite warm enough for snorkeling, which bummed me out because I'm itching to use my GoPro. Instead we drove around the island to beautiful spots: Kabira Bay, where the Japanese black pearl is cultivated. We visited the Yaeyama Palm Grove, where the palm trees there are only found on Ishigaki. 

Kabira Bay:

We met some colorful characters while we were there, starting with the family of goats that lived in the field across from our guest house. The baby goat (Rufus when we thought it was a boy/Sally when we found out it was really a girl) just about did me in with how incredibly cute and playful she was. 

Then there was our guesthouse owner Hiro-san, who would always tell us where to go, where he usually had friends who ran it. He told us to go to his friends sugar can juice stand, and they were so sweet. Still not a fan of raw sugar cane juice, but mixed with pineapple and it's really good. 

It was a fun little getaway with good friends. But it definitely had me itching for warmer weather so I can start swimming in the ocean again. Can't wait!

Until next time, Ishigaki. 

Sunday, March 16, 2014

A Fickle Baby Bump

I had the grand idea of taking a weekly photo to put all together to see my pregnancy progress. It's been fun to take them at some of my favorite spots in Okinawa (with a Hong Kong pic thrown in as well). 

I started at 13 weeks, and while I have noticed small changes (and weight gain), it's really not that obvious. I started thinking it was a waste of time, and even skipped last week thinking "what's the point?? it will look no different!" I'm still wearing my regular clothes. And if you see me in person, you really can't tell I'm 5 months pregnant. Just a little chubbier. 

The bump is fickle because one week it looks much bigger in a picture and the next week it vanishes. 

13 weeks at Torii Beach:
 14 Weeks at Toguchi Beach:
 15 Weeks at the Sunabe Seawall:
16 Weeks at the Peninsula in Hong Kong:
17 Weeks at Cape Zanpa:
 18 Weeks at Mihama:
 20 Weeks at the Marina:
So there you have it. Sometimes it looks like a cute little baby bump, other times I just look fatter. No consistency! Like I said, fickle.

Since about week 18, I have really started to feel like myself again. My appetite for food other than pretzels with peanut butter and bean burritos has come back, so that's nice. I have noticed myself getting more emotional, and I have been having consistently crazy dreams that usually involve people close to me being my arch-enemy. What's up with that??

Happy Sunday from this pregnant broad! Love you all (even if you are a threat to me in my dreams. I won't hold it against you) ;)