Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Only 19 Days...

     Esperanza's due date, and Hope's expected arrival, is only 19 days away--September 12.  But anyone who knows about babies knows that is a "definite maybe!"  At the virtual shower, family members decided to "guess" when little Hope Rose might actually put in her appearance.  Because Esperanza promised to send the first photo to the one who came closest, I'm recording those guesses here:  Aug. 30--my sister Lee Anne
                                   Sept. 1--my niece, Stephanie
                                   Sept. 5--niece, Kim
                                   Sept. 6--Grandma (me)
                                   Sept. 7--niece, Jessica
                                   Sept. 8--sister-in-law, Kathie AND Esperanza
                                   Sept. 10--sister, Mary
                                   Sept. 11--sister-in-law, Terry
                                   Sept. 13--niece, Amy
If anyone else wants to get in on this, just for fun, feel free to comment here, or send me an e-mail.
Esperanza has another doctor's appointment tomorrow afternoon, so we may have an even better idea how close (or far) she is from "Labor Day!"
     We also measured Esperanza's belly with toilet tissue at the shower tonight.  Her cousin, Monica, guessed it exactly--11 squares around!

Taos Rocky Mountain High


     What a huge "high" we're on tonight after the delightful experience of the "virtual shower" for Esperanza.  It was like having a gathering of our women family members right in our living room.  We talked, laughed, measured Esperanza's belly with toilet tissue, got a little caught up on family, and, of course, opened gifts.  I don't think any of us quite knew what to expect of this experience, but everything went really well.  A couple of internet disconnects occurred, but those were easily remedied by another phone call.  Earlier, I had worried a little that the impending storm could cause a power outage and spoil the event, but no such "spirit dampening" happened.
     I had consulted earlier, with my sister who was hosting the shower, about her menu.  Then we had the same meal, with a slight variation on dessert:  Chicken Fajitas, Rice, Strawberry Cheesecake (they had Strawberry Trifle) and Margaritas (ours were the "virgin" version, in deference to Esperanza's pregnancy.)  We also bought flowers arranged in a baby crib that is also a music box, playing Brahm's Lullaby, and a colorful Baby Girl balloon.  AND, we sat down to eat at the same hour we knew the party-goers were eating in Illinois.  All of this made it seem as if there were no miles at all between us--until we had to sign off.  Kisses were blown and wishes for safe delivery were offered, as well as promises made to keep everyone posted about the baby's arrival.  And, yes, a few tears welled up but they were joyful ones at having had such a special experience, and feeling excited to think that "seeing" one another again, in spite of all the miles that separate us, is now only a phone call away! 



Monday, August 15, 2011

Expecting Hope

     Only 28 days until Esperanza's due-date, Sept. 12.  It also happens to be my brother Mike's birthday, but that will likely be overshadowed by the arrival of our second grandchild who we're expecting to be a little girl.  Her name will be Hope Rose.  We're all getting quite excited to meet her.  We've been buying pink and ruffles and feminine.  Frankie has learned to say "Hope," but we know he won't begin to comprehend all this talk about "baby sister," "big brother" until some time later. 
     Our plan is to move in again with Esperanza around September 1 so we can be there if she needs to go to the hospital during the night.  (She lives only about 5 minutes from the hospital; we live about 20 minutes from it.)  We may be needed to care for Frankie if he happens to be with her when she goes into labor.  We've imagined several possible scenarios for what may happen, but when the time comes, it will probably all unfold in ways we hadn't imagined.

We Hiked It!

That trail I mentioned in the previous blog?  Well, after about 6 weeks of no hiking because the National Forest Service had been closed due to extreme fire danger and drought, it reopened.   So early one day last week, Bob and I hiked the trail as far as we had gone at Christmas.  We didn't see any snow, as we had in December, but still saw some spectacular views which I'm sharing here.
Looking north, toward Taos--the town in the valley.  Taos Mountain, the one we see out our front window, is the high peak on the right.  It rises to over 12,000 feet.

Looking toward Taos again, and down at the road, where our little red Honda is parked (foreground).

In December, we turned around here because there was snow and ice on the trail. 

The same spot 8 + months ago!