Friday, April 20, 2007

It's a BOY!!!

That's right, Baby Erb is a BOY!! There was no question on the ultrasound- he certainly wasn't shy. We are so incredibly excited! Not that I preferred a boy necessarily, but I have to admit, I had some recent anxiety about raising a girl! Once I saw the peepee and watched our baby boy wiggling around, I completely fell in love with him on the spot! Kevin is of course beside himself and this is the first baby on the Erb's side to carry the Erb last name.

Here's the money-shot:

He's measuring perfectly- 50th percentile and right-on to the day at 20 weeks and 4 days. He must have been excited about showing us his stuff too, because last night he had a party and danced around for about an hour keeping me awake!

Now... it's time for me to start shopping for some cute boy clothes! ;)

Monday, April 16, 2007

Halfway there!

Somehow, the chorus from Bon Jovi's "Living on a Prayer" has been playing in my mind all day. "Whoa-oh! We're halfway there, oh-ohh- Livin' on a prayer!" Ok, enough of the '80s rock, but don't act like you don't know the tune.

Yes, as of today, we are halfway through this pregnancy. When I look back to the beginning, it seems like just yesterday we were staring in shock at two pink lines, but in other respects, it feels as if it's taken forever to get this far. I can't complain, as I have truly had things go unbelievably well up to this point- crossing my fingers that the next 20 weeks follow suit.

The baby is now almost 12 ounces and over nine inches long. My belly is continuing to grow and I'm feeling more movement, which is my very favorite thing so far- much better than the 4 nightly trips to the bathroom.

Be sure to check in on Friday- our next appointment is early afternoon, so we are hoping to have some exciting GENDER news to share! Of course, if you'd like to wager a guess, I'd be happy to hold on to everyone's money until the winner is determined.

Lastly, our thoughts and prayers are with the Virginia Tech victims and their families today, as they work through the grief of the tragedy they've experienced as a campus community. We wish them strength, healing and peace.

Thursday, April 12, 2007

A kick in the night...

So I know all of you have been asking yourselves one question - and one question only - as you keep abreast of our pregnancy adventures. "Selves," you ask, "how is Kevin handling all of this?"

I appreciate the care and concern, I really do. But worry not! I am doing just fine.

The most exciting developments around these parts lately has been the increasing movement of Baby Erb. Erin gives me reports what seems like several times a day now of that little gal or guy kicking, punching, dancing and doing the backstroke, and I love hearing about it every time.

Unfortunately, to this point I have been unable to share in the excitement of feeling the movements. I've put my hand on Erin's belly when she begins to feel some movement, hoping I might be able to pick up the slightest of kicks or slides, to no avail. The easy answer is that Baby Erb is still just so little and slight that it's still too difficult to feel movement from the outside. But I know what's really going on here: That little shit is already giving me the silent treatment. It obviously recognizes my voice and stops in its tracks as soon as it knows I'm near.

That's fine. I'm an adult. I can handle it. But just wait until you get out here....

In all seriousness, thanks everyone for the kind words and wishes. The support of our family and friends makes this experience that much more memorable and enjoyable.

Saturday, April 7, 2007

To baby from Mexico again...

Hola Baby!

Our trip is coming to an end and we'll be leaving to fly back late tomorrow afternoon, but we couldn't leave without telling you about how wonderful the past few days have been.

Thursday, April 5, 2007
It was a slow, relaxing day for us! We walked into the marina and ate at Mr. Creams again for breakfast and then layed at the pool and relaxed at the casita the rest of the afternoon. On Tuesday, we planned to eat at Victors and watch the sunset from the lighthouse bar, but never made it there that evening. Instead we strolled in and out of shopps and ate at "Morgan's." Although it was delicious and a fun atmosphere with a live band, I was disappointed to miss the sunset, so we ended up eating at Victor's and watching the sunset again on Thursday instead. It was breathtaking and you wouldn't belive everything we got to see from the lighthouse once we were up there- the mountains, the cruise ships that came into Puerto Vallarta that day and the lights of every hotel and resort along the beach... it really was a gorgeous sight and we decided that we must do it again before we leave. We took the elevator on the way up, but I thought I'd be brave and take the spiral staircase down. All 120 of them!!

Friday, April 6, 2007
OUCH!!! Mommy and Daddy both got too much sun on Thursday, so we tried to avoid it a bit today! Mommy, who isn't used to wearing any sunscreen, switched to SPF 8 on Thursday and she is now kicking herself for it. (Dr. Schwartz warned me, but I kept thinking, "Who, me? Burn? ....Nah!)
We did some shopping and I've decided it's best that we don't know your gender yet, because I would have spent too much money on all the cute little baby swimsuits, cover ups and sandals! We grabbed a nap and both read alot in the afternoon. Mommy has caught up on a lot of her magazines- New Parents, Real Simple, Marie Claire, Cottage Living, and Baby Talk. I also brought a book Aunt Holli gave me by Anne Lamott called, "Operating Instructions" a journal of her son's first year... it's really cute. Daddy has been reading "Democracy Matters" by Cornel West and two issues of his beloved New Yorker.

Friday evening we had the best experience of all- a nice dinner at an amazing place called "Hacienda San Angel." It was truly an experience we'll never forget. It's an old house that once belonged to Richard Burton, who was a 1930's actor that married Elizabeth Taylor and bought the original villa after shooting "Night of the Iguana" here in Puerto Vallarta. The food was gourmet and the the grounds and view were the best and most romantic we've seen here so far. Every open-air room was filled with interesting and orignal Mexican antiques. Hidden away in the hills of PV, (we had to give our cab driver a map) it had lots of manicured gardens, charming architecture, statues of angels, original marble and stucco, and glowing candles everywhere we turned. Our food and the service were both outstanding- we split an appeitzer of grilled fresh vegatables, Mommy got the Chicken Mole special and Daddy got the baby half chicken with goat cheese and spinach. Then we split dessert... I thought it was my responsibility to test the merit of their dssert chef against that of the tapas restaurant chef we ate at on the first night, so we ordered another molten chocolate cake with ice cream. Ends up- it was a tie. This was the view from our table and a picture of us at the candle-lit stairwary in the garden. At the top of the stairs was a large grotto and more candles- just beautiful... I'm so glad you were with us for this wonderful evening.

Saturday, April 7, 2007
So far, it has been a great day... We slept in this morning and ate breakfast at a new restaurant called Seafare- which doesn't sound much like a breakfast joint, but all in all, was really impressive. I'd have to say the presentataion of my $4 french toast was spectacular with a decorated plate! We've noticed that many of the places here serve coffee with a hint of cinnamon flavor. Coffee is something I quit cold-turkey once we found out you were on the way, but I've treated myself to a half a cup almost every morning that we've been here.

During the day, we simply laid by the pool- with SPF 30 on, the burn is much better today! And this evening, we longed for some regular Mexican food again, so we are headed back to Victor's. The owner, Victor himself, comes around to every table and brings shots of tequila that he throws back with his diners. Clearly, Victor has a lot of practice at this. When we were there on Tuesday, I passed on the shot, of course, but Daddy was happy to have mine for me. And Victor was so excited that we had a baby on the way, he brought Daddy an extra one. After three shots of swill tequila and a few Coronas, he was.... well, he was ready to head back to the casita. It was such an easy-going and fun, casual spot that tonight, we're going back for more. Who knows, maybe Daddy will attempt 4 shots this time!

Thursday, April 5, 2007

To Baby from Mexico...continued....

Hello again, sweet baby! Here's what Mommy and Daddy did yesterday..

Wednesday, April 4, 2007

Wednesday, we ate breakfast in the Marina again- this time at a place called Mr. Cream's, which is well known here to be like an I-HOP. Very inexpensive and popular for it's delicious food. We strolled around and did some shopping, then spent a few hours in the afternoon at the pool again. We bought a raft so that Mommy could float in the pool since I am not supposed to get too warm. (Well, actually, YOU are not supposed to get too warm.)

The concierge scheduled dinner for us at restaurant called "El Arryan." It was located in Old Town, PV and we got a great view driving up the cobblestone streets. The menu was very simple and was truly traditional Mexican food- we shared black ban empenadas and Daddy got scallops ceviche- with cilantro and avocado and served with tortilla chips, and I got the chipoltle shrimp. Spicy! (Which I'm learning makes you kick... I'm not sure if that means you like spicy or not, but for the time being, I'm going with you like it.) They also made mommy a non-alcoholic mango daquiri...mmmmm!

Then, we walked along the streets to the local art galleries. Every Wednesday night, the art district opens up to the tourists and they have a "gallery walk." We loved stolling in and out of the different spaces- they were all unique and beautiful in their own way. Some were very minimal and chic, others warm and lots of sitting space, some were small and humble and one was sort of an old house-turned-edgy-studio. Mama fell in love the work of one artist- especially for his whimsical and colorful paintings. His name is Esau Andrade and he illustrated a Children's book of poetry in both English and Spanish, called When Words Dream, which I'm determined to find for you once we get home.

Then we walked further down to the "Malecon," the long stretch of walkway along the beach which seemed more like a steet fair with break dancers, sand sculptures, and mimes! The sunset was breathtaking- looking out on the water among the mountains and watching the boats on the ocean, we thought a lot about you and what our lives will be like once you get here. Wednesday was a great day.

Tuesday, April 3, 2007

To baby from Mexico,

Dear Baby Erb,
You have no idea what a treat you are experiencing! (or do you?...) Mommy and Daddy are on one last vacation before you get here- in beautiful Puerto Vallarta, Mexico! It's warm and sunny and we've enjoyed something special each day so far....

Saturday, March 31, 2007
We drove in the cold rainy weather to Chicago from Fort Wayne and stayed at our friends Jeremy and Dave's house. We all went out for a nice dinner of tapas at a beautiful restaurant called Meson Sabika... you loved the baked dates and even asked me to order baked apple crisp with vanilla ice cream.

Sunday, April 1, 2007
We left Chicago and flew to Mexico. Mommy was very nervous to fly with you, but I knew you made it OK because I felt you squirming around once we landed. Once we got to Mexico, it was late and dark, (but warm!) so we went straight to bed- you were exhausted!

Monday, April 2, 2007
What a great day we had. We explored our casita (that means "little house" in Spanish, which you'll learn once you get a good grasp on the English language) and were amazed at how beautiful it was! We are located on a golf course right across from the ocean and have a breathtaking view of the mountains in the distance. We actually have our own jacuzzi and hammock on our secluded patio which looks out over the golf course. The grounds are just gorgeous - beautiful pool with a waterfall, fresh flowers and palm trees everywhere - we couldn't ask for more. We are also located about a 3-5 minute stroll from Marina Vallarta. With tons of yachts and giant sailboats, it reminds us of a bigger version of New Buffalo, Michigan. There are tons of little shops and restaurants along with boat-tour companies that offer a three-hour tour. Tempting, but we'll pass, Gilligan. We met with the concierge who filled us in on all the good restaurants and shopping and where the best beaches and best tours went. She made us reservations for a restaurant with the best view in Puerto Vallarta called Barcelona Tapas. It's high up in the hills and overlooks both the city and the Bay of Banderas, not to mention the rooftops and interesting architechture of the local Mexican homes. Sunset was at 8:30, so we made our reservations for 8:00 and watched the pink and orange sky melt away as we feasted on fresh asparagus, garlic baked shrimp, marinated pork loin with cumin sauce and spicy red potatoes. Once again, you insisted on a tapas dessert. This time, it was molten chocolate cake with ice cream and berries. Hmmm... seems as if you have a sweet tooth lately. Here's a picture of our view from the restaurant:

Tuesday, April 3, 2007
Blue skies, tons of sun- from the moment we woke up this morning, we could tell it was going to be beautiful. To start things off, we had a delicious breakfast at Los Palermos. (I think that means the "pelicans," but you'll have to tell me for sure once you are fluent en espanol.) Daddy has been craving chorizo- mexican spicy sausage, so he got an omlet with chorizo and mushrooms and we ate a spanish style egg tortilla. You loved the spicy red sauce that came with it. When we returned to the casita after breakfast, we spent the afternoon lounging at the pool and then came back and took a nap while Daddy got caught up on some work. Tonight, we are planning on eating at a fun little restaurant we keep hearing about called Victor's, then taking a ride up the elevator into a tall lighthouse to see the sunset... can't wait!