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Sunday, October 10, 2010

Today is the Day



Dear Baby Girl,

I just have a feeling, that today is the day. The day that we get to meet. And I get to hold you for the very first time. That makes me so excited!

The last few months, they've been magical. Feeling you inside of me. Kicking around. Loving me. And I hope you know how much I love you. I'd do anything for you baby girl. I mean anything!

It's crazy. When I found out about you, I was scared. So scared. I wasn't sure I could do this. I didn't know if I'd be a good Mommy. But I've tried really hard. I've taken so many classes. And tried to make all the right decisions. Now all I can do is wait for you.

I love you so much! There are so many people that love you little girl! Your Uncle Barracuda thinks you're the entire world. The reason that the sun rises and sets. Really he does. He wants to be everything that your Daddy isn't. He wants to love and protect you. It's crazy how this week, today, he has to be across the country working. But he's trying to get home as quickly as he can!

And your Godparents. They love you so much. There is not a thing in the world, that they wouldn't do for us. I know this. My bestie, we've been through a lot. Our lives have been crazy. But through it all, we've had each other. And I know, she would do anything for you. She's going to be your Godmother. And I know that she is going to be amazing at loving you! Your Godfather, he's so excited to meet you too! It's so incredible to watch them both, when we get to see you. They love you so much! It's hard that everyone is away right now. But they love you! And they're trying to get hom before you are born.

If this is your birth date, you were born on an incredible day. 10-10-10. It's also your Godfather's birthday. I know that would send him over the moon, to have you born on his birthday! I just have this feeling, a good feeling, that you're coming today. I pray that our labor and delivery is safe. And that you are born healthy. Your Mommy and W love you so much! We can't wait to bring you home. To our home, to your nursery, to start our lives together.

XOXO Your Mommy and W, Your Favorite Dog. :)

Happy Birthday Guy!



A very special birthday going out to The Guy. Who happens to be one of my favorite people in the whole world! And he will also be Baby C's Godfather. Today is his birthday. Yes, on this very special day, 10-10-10. How cool is that?

And when I asked him, what he wanted for his birthday, what did he say? A cake? A new hunting thing? A car? No. He wanted Baby C to be born today. And for her to be healthy! How cool is that? Well, Guy, you might just get your wish. I'm pretty sure that Baby C is coming. Maybe be midnight!

Have a Happy Birthday! Enjoy the day. Enjoy it with my bestie. Don't worry about racing home tonight. You guys will get here, when you get here. Enjoy yourselves. What amazing friends you both are. But Guy, you've been incredible to me. One of the only people I could rely on. And you love me and my little girl so much. We can't forget how happy you make my bestie! Thank you! For all of those things, I hope all of your dreams come true! XOXO

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Polyvore



My contractions are all over the place! Crazy hard and strong for about 90 minutes, then nothing. I didn't sleep much last night. But, I took advantage today. And I took a really long nap! I can tell, we're getting close. :)

But while I've been wasting some time here, just trying to get Baby C ready, I found Polyvore. And I signed up. Here's my page. Yes, I played for a few hours. So much fun! I wish I would have signed up a long time ago!

This could be a really fun thing to play with. You know, when I start losing weight. I'm not good at putting outfits together. But I think this could help. If not, it's just fun to play around. It's like paper dolls for grown ups! XOXO

Friday, October 8, 2010

41 Weeks

Dear Baby Girl,

We are 1 week "late." I'm not stressed. Neither is our doctor. But I am anxious! I can't wait to meet you. I know. For 41 weeks, you've been inside me, growing. But I want to hold you. I want to look into your eyes. To kiss your cheeks. And I want to just be your Mommy.

Today, our doctor scrapped my membranes. It hurt. But it was worth it. I've felt a few contractions since. And this is supposed to start things moving. You know, in the right direction. That means we could meet sometime this weekend! Now that makes me excited!

Everything is ready for you. Your nursery. Our home. W. Your Mommy. Your Nana and
Nono. Your Uncle Barracuda. We're all ready! We're just waiting for you to come. Your Nono wants to know if you can come on Sunday. A cool date! But that is all up to you!

The only thing that I want, is for you and me to be safe and healthy. We have years and years to be together. But for right now, I want you to be healthy. And safe. So if you have to "cook" for another week, I'm OK with it. Just take as much time as you need!

XOXO Your Mommy

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Oh My!




I'm closer to having Baby C. But not really "ready" yet. At least that is what my doctor told me. I had another "Non Stress Test" yesterday. And both Baby C and I are doing good. We're just not ready for the "Birthing Process" yet.

So my doctor gave me a list of things to do. All of which, I've been doing. You know, exercise, spicy food, relaxing. But nothing is helping. I've also tried more "natural" things. Like different herbs and teas.

The only thing I haven't tried is sex. Because I'm in the middle of a divorce. I'm pretty sure that T hates me. So that would just be stupid. And well, who else is there? I'm almost 41 weeks pregnant. Not much of a catch...

Anyway, I watched this video today on YouTube. I think I might have scared myself. So much so, that I'm OK if my daughter decides to wait until 42 weeks to make her arrival. Do they seriously have to cut you? I hope not!

I know. I went to classes. They showed us videos. But I guess it didn't feel "real" yet. Because I wasn't days away from giving birth. But you know what? Whatever it takes to have a healthy Baby C, I'm more than willing to do. I just want my little girl to be healthy. XOXO

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

I Wish

I wish that I was really crafty. That I could sit and make Baby C a bunch of hair bows. But I'm not crafty. Not at all!



I want some of these really colorful ones.





And some big ones to put on a headband. These are the cutest!





These ones are really adorable too! I like how the flowers are so big!



So because I'm not crafty, and believe me, I've tried to be! I'm going to be ordering some more of these for my little girl. I'm sure Baby C is going to look so cute wearing them! Let's hope that I don't break the bank. Because I want to buy 1 of every color. :) XOXO

Monday, October 4, 2010

Cute Dolls

It's Monday. Yes, I'm still pregnant. And I went to the doctor today. That meant no work. I'm also no closer to having Baby C today, then I was on Friday. But we're working on that. I went on a long walk. And had a very spicy lunch.

But I wanted to share something with you. I recently found these cute little dolls. I found them via twitter. And then, I found the cute little shop where they're sold! Just look at them!



And you can have them specially made. As in, to resemble your child. :) I'm really considering ordering one of these adorable dolls. :)



I really like this one. It's a "Snuggling Doll." And I think it will be perfect for Baby C! But I'm going to wait until after she is born to order her one. Why? Because I want to order one with her hair color and eye color. :) Oh, I can't wait until she is here! XOXO

Sunday, October 3, 2010

King of Queens



Now that I'm officially past my due date, I've been trying to keep myself busy doing other things. Like long walks during my lunch and after work. Yes, I walk until it gets dark. Then I come home and eat dinner. And sit and wonder. Wondering when my little girl is going to get here.

So I was flipping through the TV, I saw, the King of Queens. I LOVED this show! So I sat and watched...um 3 episodes. It was great. I laughed so hard. And I'm pretty sure that Baby C loved it too!

Any suggestions on how to go into labor? Just wondering what your thoughts are on the subject. XOXO

Friday, October 1, 2010

40 Weeks

Dear Baby Girl,

Today is our due date. And you're just not ready to come yet. I'm OK with that. Our doctor said neither of us is ready. We might have another 2 weeks to go. But I hope that I don't have to wait that long.

We had a crazy week. I'm sorry that I get so upset when we're around your Daddy. I never wanted things to be this way. But you know what, I've learned that I can't control these things. I hope your Daddy wakes up. And decided to come see you being born. I think that is something very special. Something that would start to build your relationship together. But I'm not in charge of that.

And your Uncle Barracuda has definitely been picking up the pieces for us. He's been great. Part of me wants to let him really love and take care of us. But I want to protect you. I don't want you to get hurt. So we are just going to have to wait this out. I know he loves us. But I'm not sure if I'm ready for that kind of "Romantic Love" again.

All week, I've been going into your nursery. Sitting in my chair and looking at your crib. I can't wait until you are sleeping in there. I want to sit and read to you. To hold you. And to love you. Baby Girl, I just can't wait to meet you! I'm ready when you are!

XOXO Your Mommy

Thursday, September 30, 2010

Can't Wait!



I saw this picture this morning. And it just made me smile. I can't wait to hold my Baby Girl! We're 1 day away from our due date. I don't feel anywhere near having my Baby Girl. But I guess you just never know these things. Hopefully I'll get a better idea, of when I get to meet Baby C tomorrow. I have a doctor's appointment. I'm hoping that I've made some progress. Because I seriously can't wait to meet my little girl. :) XOXO

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

He Makes Me Sad





I watched this video just now, and it made me cry. Why? Because look at how happy Chloe and Chris are. What an amazing dad. Chloe looks so happy!

Today, T and I had another Court Date. He insisted on it. My lawyer called me on Monday to let me know. Yes, at 39 weeks, and 2 days, I went to court. He flat out told the judge, he didn't want to be Baby C's father. Whether DNA can prove it or not.

The judge has left it up to me. If I decide to put T's name on Baby C's birth certificate, he is her father. Then I'll have the option to petition for Child Support and such. Or I can allow T to sign over all Parental Rights. If I do that, his name won't go on Baby C's birth certificate. I can't ever ask for anything from him. Which is more than OK with me. It honestly is. But the judge will not hear any of my decisions unit after Baby C is born.

Here I am, 2 days from my due date. We should be so happy! T and I should be sitting in our home, planning on our Baby Girl's birth. Just thinking about the rest of our lives. Instead, we're in Court. Fighting about whether or not T is going to be held responsible, in the eyes of the Court, as Baby C's father.

It makes me really sad. Because T and I always talked about, what it was like growing up in a "Broken Home." And how we wanted to be married forever. To give our kids a better life. Now look at us. We can't even figure out which way is up.

I wanted so badly to work this out between T and I. And when I realized that there was nothing left to fight for, I at least wanted our baby to have a good relationship with T. But T wants nothing of it. I should be grateful that he decided this before Baby C's birth. Before she grows dependent on her dad.

But it still hurts. It hurts that he left me. Left me for not only 1 other woman, but 2. Who knows, there are probably more. And that he lied to me. Lied about his Baby Girl, M. Both of these innocent babies, deserve a better father.

More than anything, it hurts me that my Baby Girl will never have a relationship with her daddy. She will never have the chance to know the loving side of him. The side that loves, comforts, and protects. It pains me that there will never be love shared between the 2 of them. But that is T's decision. Not mine. And one day, he'll have to explain that to our daughter. XOXO

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Oh Grapes!



Yum! Dinner last night, it was yummy. Yes, I somehow figured out how to cook everything. And with a little bit of help from Barracuda, we managed a yummy dinner! And dessert. :)

But since last week, I haven't been eating much. I just don't feel like eating. I'm not hungry. I try to eat. I really do. But Baby C is running out of room in my belly. And it really doesn't make for much of an appetite. But I'm trying to eat often. Even if it's small bits of food.

Grapes have become my go to. I crave them. I've been craving them for weeks. And they're yummy! In the past week, I can honestly say, I've eaten at least 6 bags. Is that crazy? XOXO

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Planning Something Nice



My friend Barracuda has been amazing. He's been an incredible friend. Helping me through my separation with T, our ongoing divorce, and my pregnancy. He's been so good!

Well, he had a really tough day today. A bad one. He's not been having a nice weekend at all. I feel really bad. Especially since I can't physically be there to be supportive. But we talked on the phone.

Mondays are our days to have dinner together. For a while now, we've been meeting on Mondays evenings. We have dinner. And he helps me do things around my house. Or we just hangout. But I've been wanting to do something special for him. Because he always brings me dinner, or cooks for me. And he never asks me for anything.

At our Baby Shower, his mom let me know, Barracuda really likes chili. And I searched for a good recipe. Remember, I'm not a very good cook. But I found this recipe. And with some changes, I'm going to make a big pot tomorrow. And maybe I can figure out how to make some corn bread. You know the kind, the mix that you just add water to. :)

Ya, I want to do something to help lift Barracuda's spirits. He's been so amazing to me. And I just want to be able to give him support right now too. Wish me luck with my cooking! :) XOXO

Friday, September 24, 2010

39 Weeks

Dear Baby Girl,

We're a week away from our due date. That excites me so much! I just can't wait to hold you. I dream about you every night. About being able to cuddle you. And just to love you.

Our week has been pretty normal and somewhat boring. We're finally sleeping a little more. Which is very nice. But I feel tired all the time. So I'm just trying to relax. Almost all week, we've been sneaking in little naps after dinner. :) I hope you're relaxing in there too!

W is getting excited too. I know he can tell we're about to have a major change. And he just loves sleeping under your crib. It's like he's practicing, for when you come home. We're all excited!

I LOVE feeling the relationship between you and W. He lays his head on my belly. And then I can feel you moving around in there. When he can, W will wiggle mommy's shirt up and put his wet nose on my belly, or lick my belly. That must really excite you. Because you will move around so much. You will kick and then W gets excited too! I just can't wait until you're big enough to play with W. He's going to be a great "Big Brother!"

I can also tell that you're getting ready to be born. I can feel you moving down. We've had some contractions on and off. I can feel you in a different place than before. Although it's a little uncomfortable, it still gets me excited! Because I know that soon, we will get to meet each other. And I'm so excited to just hold you in my arms!

Keep growing strong and healthy. W and I are so excited to meet you. But we are more than OK waiting for the day that you are ready to come. I LOVE you so much princess. I can't wait to meet you! Lots of hugs and kisses!

XOXO Your Mommy

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Dreaming About Booties



All night last night, I dreamt about booties. And not the kind that you would expect. But these booties. For me to wear.

A few weeks ago, my bestie had on a pair. And I loved them! She looked really cute. And well, they look a lot easier to walk in than heels. I'm still not too good at walking in heels.

Then Trina tweeted about them, and I really wanted a pair. Um, ya. I'm way beyond preggers. And for my sake and my daughter's, I have refrained from buying a pair. But they are definitely going on my list. I'm buying them after my baby girl is born. Which pair? I don't know yet. I'm still searching online. :) XOXO

Monday, September 20, 2010

Pretty Necklaces



At 3:42 of this video...I LOVE the necklaces! They are just so pretty. And dainty. I don't have anything like these. And I really want one now. I just wish I could afford one. Well, maybe I can find one somewhere. Something that looks similar, but that is much more in my budget. Anyone seen anything like this? XOXO

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Halloween Costumes

So I'm quite miserable today. Not really feeling like doing much. But I have something fun to share with you. Last night, I realized something. Baby C will be here before Halloween! And I needed to buy some costumes! I'm almost positive we won't do anything. But I live in a "Family" neighborhood now. So I'm going to try and handout candy. There are so many kiddos around here. :)

But I thought it would be fun to dress up. Even if it's just for a picture or 2. So I went hunting for something cute! This is what I found...



I really like this little flower. It's $49! But I figured, it's going to be my little girl's 1st Halloween. Oh, and Barracuda ended up buying it. He thinks Baby C will look adorable. I might be a little biased here, but I think she will look beautiful! :)



I'm was thinking about this bee costume for me. $20 isn't bad. And it covers everything! You know, I'll only be a few weeks postpartum. No need to scare people. I figure I can wear some leggings and my black ballet flats. So cute!

So I know, people are going to think I'm nuts for buying Halloween costumes. Especially this flower one. But this is Baby C's 1st holiday. And I think it's important to start fun memories right away.

Unfortunately, I didn't have a lot of fun times in my childhood. And I want it to be very different for my little one. It was kinda funny. Last night, I was looking at these costumes. And talking to Barracuda. He didn't hesitate. He just ordered them. It was really sweet of him too! Because he didn't have to. Now I'm anxious for Halloween to get here. XOXO

Friday, September 17, 2010

38 Weeks

Dear Baby Girl,

I'm so excited! You are officially considered full term. And the doctor told me that you are ready to be born. Well, when you are ready to come. But you know what your Mommy is trying to say.

Your Uncle Barracuda and I have been working hard to put all of your presents away. We got so many amazing gifts from our Our Baby Shower. It's almost been a week. And I'm still trying to find places for everything. We're so lucky, to be this loved!

This week, well I've been trying to just relax. I hope that's making things nice and comfy for you too. I know that I haven't been sleeping much. But it's been hard to get comfy. I'm sure you're feeling the same way. I think we're starting to run out of room. But we don't have long to wait. So I think we'll be OK.

This week has been so nice. Spending lots of time with all of our friends. They love you so much already. Everyone is so excited to meet you! But no one is more excited than me. I really can't wait. I look at your nursery everyday. And I can just imagine you sleeping in your crib. And later, playing on the fun rug. :)

I can feel you move so much now. Every time you move, it's such an incredible feeling. And I look forward to all of your movements. It makes me smile so big! We've been reading more than usual too. And I think you really enjoy that. I'm glad.

Today, just seeing your gorgeous face made my day! You look so beautiful. And you were moving so much! Our doctor joked that you were having a party in your Mommy's belly. It sure did look like you were dancing around!

Well Little Girl, I can't wait to meet you! Your Mommy already LOVES you so much! I hope you know that. I'll always love and adore you. Baby Girl, you are my sunshine and my world! Stay strong and healthy. I'm counting down the days until I get to meet you!

XOXO Your Mommy

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Baby Showers in Review



This past weekend, Baby C and I had our Baby Showers. Yes, we had 2! I still can't believe it!

My bestie and some friends had planned our Baby Shower for Saturday. I knew about it. And I was so excited! Not about getting presents. I had already bought, pretty much everything that Baby C needs. But I was so excited to see all of my friends. Especially my bestie! It seems like it's been forever since I've seen my friends. Living out here, I don't get to see them often. And that's tough.

I got to spend Friday with my bestie. And that was just incredible! We went to my doctor's appointment, out to lunch, and just hung out. We did some shopping. And I really enjoyed all of it! We even managed a mani-pedi too. :)

My bestie ended up making dinner for us that night. Because I fell asleep late in the afternoon. Barracuda and her Guy were working. And we were all meeting up later that night. The 2 of us really did enjoy ourselves.

I spent the weekend at my bestie and her Guy's house. That's where the Baby Shower was going to be. And Saturday morning, the house was buzzing! The guys left early in the morning. They had a way to go for work. And there were so many people helping to get ready for our Baby Shower!

I was really excited to share this with C too! She made the trip out here just for the Baby Shower. And it was nice to spend time with her. C and W were our only family that came. But it was such a blessing to have them here. Yes, I consider my dog family! C is so excited to meet her new niece too!

I honestly just enjoyed being around all of my friends. It was like a reunion of the "Wives Club." :) Yes, all of our husbands work together. And we all travel together. It was just nice to be with them again. We sat around laughing and talking. I got to change some diapers. Yes, some of my friends have newborns! :)

The pile of gifts was HUGE! I was feeling a bit intimidated. So many amazing things. I really do feel blessed. There were lots of beautiful presents. So many clothes! Baby C might not even get to wear everything! She could possibly wear a new outfit everyday!

But the most special gifts were handmade. My bestie and her mom made some of the most beautiful things. I wish I could find my camera. I took pictures of everything. I mean, these are gorgeous blankets, sweater sets, booties, everything! I even got my tutu for Baby C! :)

On Sunday, the guys were back. They actually got back late, late Saturday night. And my bestie and all the guys planned a "Surprise BBQ" for us! Yes, all the people I used to work with, were able to come on Sunday. It was another Baby Shower! I really have missed all of these people. It feels amazing to be part of their lives again. I'm so lucky and blessed, to have such amazing friends. :)

Sunday was really about just being with friends. We also got another mountain of gifts. And now that I'm thinking about it, I need to start writing out Thank yous. But it's so amazing to just spend time with my friends. I've missed them so much! And they love my Baby Girl so much!!!

After everyone had left, and all had calmed down, my bestie and her guy surprised me again! They put together an entire nursery in their home! For my Baby Girl! :) They're going to be Baby C's Godparents. And they are planning to steal away, my Little Girl, from time to time. Everything that a baby could possibly need, is in that nursery. It's beautiful! I can tell, they love Baby C as much as I do.

As you can tell, we are so lucky and loved! Life has not been too kind to Baby C and I. But God has sent us some amazing people. People that love us. And want to take care of us. We are truly blessed. I just wish I could find my camera. We took some amazing pictures! And I want to say a special and HUGE Thank you to my bestie! You are the best friend anyone could ever have! :) XOXO

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Fried Tuna Stuffed Jumbo Pasta Shells




Gosh these look yummy! If I didn't have such a big belly, I'd try them. But I fear, I might burn my baby belly. And that wouldn't be good. I should have probably mastered cooking before getting pregnant. Well, what are you gonna do? What's done is done. Maybe Barracuda and I could attempt these. And he can deal with the frying. :) XOXO

Monday, September 13, 2010

Smells Like Honey :)



My bestie didn't just shower my little girl with presents this weekend, she bought me some stuff too! Some really amazing things. This "Honey Farm" set was one of my favorites. I tried it out this morning. And it was wonderful! Definitely what I needed after a long weekend. :)

I tried the "Honey I Washed the Kids" soap. It was amazing! And the "Flying Fox" shower gel. It smells so amazing! But then again, I'm a HUGE fan of honey. It just smells so amazing! After using this, my skin feels so amazing and soft. And there is definitely a hint of honey left on my skin. I just love the way it smells!

I'm going to save the "Honey Bee" bath bomb and "Ma Bar" bubble bar for later. I think they'd be great in a bath closer to my due date. You know, when I really need a good soak. Or even after my little girl is born.

I tell you, I have the best bestie in the entire world. Her guy and Barracuda are amazing too! Not only did we have a Baby Shower on Saturday. But the guys also surprised me with a Baby Shower/BBQ yesterday. Lots of fun. But more on both later this week. :) XOXO

Friday, September 10, 2010

37 Weeks

Dear Baby Girl,

It was so great to see you today! Your Godmother came with us to our appointment. And it was so much fun! It was so amazing to watch you in there. You little mouth was open. We got pictures of what looks like you waving at us too!

Then we all went out to lunch. And we did a little bit of shopping. :) Your mommy and Godmother just couldn't resist! It was great to feel you moving around so much too! My bestie just loved feeling you kick. And little girl, you've been very active today!

But it was also nice to get all these questions answered by our doctor and my bestie. Who would have known that I've been having contractions all week. And I didn't know it. I didn't know why my belly was getting so hard. Turns out, we were having a contraction. Nothing major. And it's pretty normal.

You've also dropped. And as our doctor put it, you're getting "ready." It makes breathing a lot easier. But walking is becoming hard. I'm waddling a whole lot more! But it's OK. Because we're getting ready to meet.

Now we're at home. My bestie is doing some finishing touches to your nursery. And I'm trying to rest. Later, we're heading to your Godparents' house. And we're also going to church tonight. It's a big night. This entire weekend is a big weekend! I hope you're ready for it. I know I am!

Love you lots little girl. And I can't wait to see all of our friends this weekend. It should be lots of fun. And I know everyone is excited to see you in my belly. Until then, we're going to enjoy lots of time with my bestie. Maybe we should take a little nap too! And your job, is to get big and strong.

XOXO Your Mommy

Thursday, September 9, 2010

2 Days!

In 2 days, Baby C and I are having our Baby Shower! I'm so excited. Not for all the presents. But to see my friends. I haven't seen my bestie in what seems like forever. Um, the 2-3 hour drive, plus her schedule, and her guy's, well it doesn't make for a good combo. And we don't get to see each other a lot.

I also don't see a lot of my friends either. I didn't realize that the move out here would be this tough. But I understand. All of their husbands work hard. As they do too. And there is so much traveling involved in this profession. It's OK.

But in 2 days, I get to see all of them! Some of my friends have had babies this summer, and I'm so excited to get to see them too! Maybe I'll get to have a little "practice" with the babies. I want to try my hand at more diaper changes and such.

Just 2 days. It seems like so far away! But also just around the corner. I'm so anxious! I really can't wait to hangout with my bestie and her and her guy's house. I'm going to be staying over for the weekend. And another bonus, I get Monday off of work too! XOXO

Monday, September 6, 2010

So Cute!



I really like watching Shandel. Her videos are adorable. Both her vlogs and makeup videos. But this video definitely caught my attention. Look at how cute the crib bedding is! I would have never thought about black and white for a baby. Oh ya, she's having a girl too!

But seriously, this is a cute set! I already picked out my little one's bedding. We're lucky. We actually got 2 sets. I bought one. And the other was a gift. Nothing like this. But still cute. I'm just in love with all things nursery recently. :) XOXO

Saturday, September 4, 2010

MAC Eyeshadows



I really like to watch these types of videos. And these colors that Shandel talked about, are beautiful! I need to add these to my list. I really like these colors. And because I'm still makeup challenged, I like to take advice from makeup lovers. And women like Shandel. Her makeup always looks amazing! Do you have any favorites to add? XOXO

Friday, September 3, 2010

36 Weeks

Dear Baby Girl,

Can you believe it? We have 4 weeks until our due date! And just over a week until our Baby Shower. I'm so excited about both of those things. For completely different reasons. But you know, I love you so much.

In 4 weeks, it's our due date. The day that you are supposed to be "fully cooked." Um, I say, however long it takes little girl, you take. If it's 3 weeks or 5 weeks! Yes, I learned today, that I could be pregnant for 42 weeks. Because you're my very first baby. So things might take a little longer. I guess we just have to wait and see. But whatever you do, stay in there and get big and healthy. And when you're ready, so am I!

Then, I've been thinking about our Baby Shower. Not for the reasons you might think. Nope. Because we have everything that you could possibly need. I've been doing a pretty good job of shopping. But I'm excited to see all of our friends. It's been tough living so far from everyone. And I don't get to see people that often. Not even your Godmother. That makes me a little sad. But I understand that we're all so busy!

So next week, we're going to go spend the weekend with your Godparents. I know your Godfather has to work. But he'll be coming back and forth. I'm really anxious to see everyone! And I know everyone is very anxious to see us! Because I keep getting great emails from everyone.

Now, I'm going to go relax. And maybe we'll have a snack. It's been so wonderful this week. Just know that in less than a month, we're going to meet each other! Little girl, you stay safe, and grow strong. W and I are so anxious for you to come!

XOXO Your Mommy

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

1 Month!!!



1 month from today is my due date. I'm so excited! I know. Only 4% of women have their babies on their due date. But I'm still so excited! In about a month, I finally get to meet my little girl. I've never been so excited! It's really all I could think about today. And my Baby Girl has been moving around so much. Maybe she is just as excited as I am. I hope she's cooking good inside. Because I'm anxious to meet her! XOXO

Monday, August 30, 2010

Blueberry Cobbler



Yum! This looks so delicious! I desperately want to make this. I know. I'm not a cook. Or a baker. But it looks so yummy! And I'm feeling confident. Like I can actually make this little beauty. Hmm, I wonder if I have everything that I need. XOXO

Saturday, August 28, 2010

I Found Them!

So I've been doing a little bit of shopping lately. OK, A LOT of shopping lately! My baby girl is almost here. And I just can't help myself. There are so many cute things to buy. I seriously hope that I never lose my job. Not just because I like being able to buy food and pay for my home. But because I want to spoil my little girl all that I can!

Now take a look at these cute shoes I bought. All from Old Navy. And totally affordable!!!



Look at these adorable pink shoes! Perfect at $7.50!





And this hat. I'm in LOVE! It's only $9.50.





But these pink shoes, they're why I'm so excited! They match this dress perfectly! You know, the 5th one down. And they were only $9.50. :)



Now I'm totally glad that tomorrow it Monday. I really need to get back to work. So then, maybe I'll stop shopping. But seriously, how cute are little girl things? :) XOXO

Friday, August 27, 2010

35 Weeks

Dear Baby Girl,

Well, we're 5 weeks away from officially meeting. And I'm really excited! I can't wait to hold you in my arms! Everything is ready for you. W and I, we graduate soon from our Baby and Dog class. Your mommy is also making her sacraments in a couple of weeks. And our baby shower is almost here! So exciting!

Today, we spent the entire day with Uncle Barracuda. He came to our doctor's appointment with us. Then we had some fun. We went shopping for you. Then we had some lunch. Did some more shopping. Had some dinner. Went for some dessert. And watched a few movies at home. It was a lot of fun. And a much needed break for your mommy. :)

I can really tell that you like your Uncle Barracuda a lot too! You kick for him. Every time he puts his hand on my belly, you kick for him. And he loves it! He loves to read to you. And generally, he's just in love with you!

It's crazy, because everything that you're daddy isn't, your Uncle Barracuda is. And he doesn't have to do these things. But that's how much he loves you! It almost makes me sad. But I'm glad that your Uncle Barracuda is here for you. For us actually. Maybe, well, maybe now you will understand. Not all men are bad. Some are really great guys. Your mommy has just had really bad luck in the generally area of men. Starting with your grandpa. But there are some really nice guys out there. It just takes a while to find a really great one. So when you're old enough, please be patient. :)

Well baby girl. It's about time we head to bed. Your mommy is quite tired. W is already snoring away. And we're all just so excited to meet you! My Love, you are the sunshine in your mommy's life. Love you lots!

XOXO Your Mommy

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

From Uncle Barracuda

Barracuda went shopping for Baby C. When? I have absolutely no clue! We got back Sunday. And Monday when I got home from work, he was sitting at the front step. Dinner in one hand. A big pink box in the other. What was inside? Lots of clothes for Baby C! :)



A cute onesie type suit. :)





And a ruffley pink romper. So cute!





An orange bubble romper. I'm sure I wore these when I was little. :)





Just look at this butterfly outfit! Adorable!!!





This flower dress just might be my favorite! Don't be shocked if Baby C has her 1st month pictures taken in it. :) I just need to find some cute pink shoes to match!





Love how stinking adorable this dress is! I bet it would look so cute with red shoes and a red headband. :)





This dress totally reminds me of where I grew up! Love it!





How cute is this flower costume!!!





I'm totally loving the polka dots here!





I just LOVE this striped, hooded bodysuit. :)





And this pink, bear snowsuit!





And you can't forget about the polka dot, bear snowsuit!



Can you see how loved Baby C is already? I just love it! And love that she has a real male role model. I'm glad that Barracuda is in our lives. And I want my daughter to know that she can depend on men. That they won't all hurt her. It's also nice to see that other people, besides me, are exciting for my little girl to come into the world. :) XOXO

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Baby Got Back



This song, it came out when my bestie and I were 8 or 9. No lie! And she has always had one of those ghetto booties. You know, the big bubble butt. So this was her song. Not by her choice. But because I used to sing it to her all the time! Now, everytime I hear it, it reminds me of her!

Barracuda and I were just having a lazy day. Listening to old school music and getting my house baby proofed. That's when this song came on. And instantly, I thought of my bestie! I told Barracuda all about our childhood. And how I would bug my bestie with this song.

In the end, we agreed, it's her song. Because no matter what size she is, she still has the ghetto booty. Size 0 or size 5. She's got a booty! I'm pretty sure The Guy doesn't mind either. :) XOXO

Friday, August 20, 2010

34 Weeks

Dear Baby Girl,

We had a great appointment today. You smiled and waved at me. And it made me cry. I just can't wait to hold you in my arms. I'm so in love with you!

I've been so tired and hungry all week. But it's definitely worth it. For you. And for you to be healthy. I'd go through anything just to make sure you are one healthy and happy baby girl! But you look beautiful already. :)

This week, we haven't been doing much. Besides working. Your Uncle Barracuda really wants us to go see him and your Auntie Lola, and your Uncle Guy. We're going to surprise them. And we're leaving later with some other friends. It should be a lot of fun!

Yes, I've decided we're going to have a little fun. Our doctor OK'd it. And the flying. So we're a OK! But this will probably be our last trip until you're born. I don't mind. I really enjoy being home with you! And W of course!

Speaking of our favorite pup, we're about to graduate from our Baby and Dog Class. We've had so much fun! I hope you enjoyed it too! I know all of this work is going to pay off. And I just want you to know how excited we are to meet you! :) Now, your mommy needs to go pack for our trip.

XOXO Your Mommy

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Baby Jelly Shoes



Look what I found in the clearance section at Old Navy. Baby jelly shoes! Jelly shoes were HUGE when I was little. But my parents never, ever let me have any. So I had to get these. I actually got 3 pair. For under $20. A pair of pink, clear, and these blue ones. Oh, they are so cute! I got them in different sizes too! My girl is going to have one cute closet of clothes! XOXO

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Baby Showers on the Brain



I've had our baby shower on the brain lately. It's just over a month away. I can't believe it! And Baby C will be here in less than 2 months!!! Where has the time gone? I just want to know that much.

But I found this cute video on YouTube. I hope our baby shower is just as much fun. And is exciting! I really can't wait. Mostly because I want to see my friends. Lots of them are pregnant or just had babies! And I just want to hang out with them.

That's the only downfall to where I live now. I'm an easy 2-3 hours away! And I don't get to spend as much time with my friends. Not even my bestie. So I'm really looking forward to our baby shower. And time with my friends. And mostly, celebrating Baby C! XOXO

Monday, August 16, 2010

2 Years



I can't believe it's been 2 years. Yes, 2 years ago, I started this blog. Craziness! It feels crazy. So much has happened in the last 2 years. Marriage, pregnancy, a pending divorce. I just can't believe it!

I don't know how many people read this blog. But it's nice to sit down and write about my life. Whatever is going on. It's just nice. I hope someone else out there enjoys this too. Here's to another amazing year. I know this is going to be the best one yet! Because my little princess is almost here. :) XOXO

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Ickle Baby Bot Bath Bomb



One of my friends, who just had a baby, gave me a whole basket of these! They're to add to my baby girl's bath. You are supposed to drop one into their bath. And it's supposed to relax the little ones. You know, when she gets here. And is probably a few months old. But they smell so yummy!

I put the basket on my nightstand. Because I was going to read a little last night. But the scent, it put me right to sleep. This morning, I made sure to put them in the nursery. :)

But what a fun little gift. I just wish that they were pink. I know. My favorite color is blue. But I want my little girl to have all the girly things she can get. These though, are going to be one of our staples! I can't wait!!! XOXO

Friday, August 13, 2010

33 Weeks

Dear Baby Girl,

This has been a rather uneventful week. But I've enjoyed it a lot! Because I've been home more. And, we've gotten to spend a lot of time together. Feeling each other out! Literally!

You have been moving around so much. Getting into all of your mommy's insides. I swear, you are either pulling on my ribs. Or kicking my parts. It's interesting to feel. A little weird. But really fun!

I hope you are enjoying everything inside. I can only imagine how warm, safe, and sound it is. Your mommy is trying her best to make it the safest and healthiest place for you to grow.

This week, we've been hanging out and listening to a lot of music. And reading. I know you like that. And Uncle Barracuda just loves talking to you! I know that you are really enjoying that. Because you kick and get so excited to hear his voice. :)

Your mommy is also doing more shopping. I know. I never liked to shop for myself. But I just can't help it. When I see all these adorable dresses, and ruffles, and everything so cute! I just have to buy something for my precious little girl. :)

That's been our week. Not too much crazy stuff. But a nice peaceful, summer week. Eating lots of fresh tomatoes. Enjoying evenings outside. And just being our little family! I can't wait to hold you!

XOXO Your Mommy

PS One of your future best friends was born this week too! He is adorable! Who knows...one day, he might be the love of your life. I can't wait for all of our future playdates. Mommy :)

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Cute Little Dress



I just couldn't help myself! Today after work, I went to exchange some pants at Old Navy. And I seen this dress. I had to buy it! Isn't it the sweetest little thing you have ever seen in your life? It was $14.50. And they also had it in grey. I got that one too!

I know Baby C isn't due until October. But I figure that I can buy some tights for her to wear with these dresses. I just couldn't help myself. Look at those ruffles! XOXO

Monday, August 9, 2010

Another Precious Baby!

Just over a month since my friend had her daughter, my other friend had her son. I got a text with the cutest little picture this morning. He is a doll!

It's so exciting to go on this adventure with so many of my friends. To know that we're all becoming parents together. And that I will have support. And someone to talk to. You know, this is a whole new game for me. But I'm excited. I just wish my bestie was having a little one too!

Now, I can't wait to get off of work. Barracuda and I are going to drive out to meet this little guy. I can't wait to hold him! Babies are such a blessing and a gift from God. Congrats to the happy parents! XOXO

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Winnie the Pooh



I really want this book for my baby girl. I've seen it online. But everytime I go to the bookstore, I can't find it. Maybe because my bestie is a total bookworm, or because she really loves Winnie the Pooh. But I want this book! By the way, she's always loved the bear, even before he was popular!

So I'm on the hunt. If you know where I can get my hands on a copy, let me know! I really want to be able to read to my little girl. I think it's so important. And I want to share amazing books like this. If you have any other must haves, please share with me in the comments. :) XOXO

Friday, August 6, 2010

32 Weeks

Dear Baby Girl,

Mommy has been very emotional this week. I'm sure you've noticed. Sorry about that. I'm just not sure what's wrong with me. Everything makes me cry. Whether I'm sad, lonely, or even happy. I'm just emotional.

And we've had some crazy cravings all week long! We finally got our chili dog today for lunch. Wasn't it good? I know I enjoyed it. I've been trying really hard to eat super healthy. It's a hard task for your momma. Because I don't know how to cook. Your grandma never taught me. She doesn't really know how to cook either. So there you go. But today, I decided we could have a chili dog. After all the veggies we've been eating.

And your mommy is getting ready for your big arrival! 2 months, we are 2 months away from finally meeting. I'm super excited! Your Uncle Guy, he wants us to wait until his birthday! That's like an extra 10 days! I'm not sure if we can do that. But whatever it takes for you to come to the world healthy and happy, I'm ready for it!

W and I are getting so anxious too! We're almost done with our class. And I know that he is going to love you so much! He already sleeps under your crib. And he really likes to feel you kick. I have to admit it, so do I. But we know you need to cook a little more. And we're OK with that. Just know, we all love you so much!

XOXO Your Mommy

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Chili Dogs



I had many dreams about chili dogs last night. Many! Don't they look so good? I really want 1...or even 3! I know. It's 5 something in the morning. But this is a crazy craving. I don't even have anything to make a chili dog. And I have no clue where I might be able to get one for lunch. What I do know is...I've got to have at least 1 today! XOXO

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Urban Rain Giveaway



You can win $25 from Urban Rain. How? By entering this giveaway! Hurry up! It ends tomorrow morning. But who wouldn't love a ring and some hair clips from this shop? XOXO

Do I



This song, it reminds me of my husband. It makes me cry when I hear it. Every time. I miss him. I miss sleeping in his arms. Waking up in the morning next to him. Being silly together. Losing to him at video games. Trying to cook. Just being together.

I still love him. I'm pretty sure I always will. Especially since we're having this precious baby girl together. How can I not love him? But I'm pretty sure, he doesn't love me. No matter how much I love him, he's moved on.

That's the tough part. Because He was my everything. And here I am. Left with a baby on the way, and our dog. It's hard. It's our reality. But this song, it will always remind me of him. It's everything I feel. Why didn't he give us a chance? That, I will never know. XOXO

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

2 for 1 Giveaway



Isn't this a cute apron? I like it. It reminds me of eating healthy. Something I have to remind myself to do every day now! Crochet Every Day is having a giveaway. You can win one of the 5 aprons that Megan has on her blog. Go take a look! You won't be disappointed. You can also win a DVD. I would like Juno. :) Good Luck everyone who enters. XOXO

Bohemian Raspberry



This is what I'm craving tonight. Doesn't that look yummy? I would give just about anything to eat a whole container of this ice cream. But I'm thinking it's not too healthy for me or my little baby. So I'm refraining. And trying very hard to be good. I'm eating some fresh raspberries instead. :) But doesn't that look yummy? XOXO

Friday, July 30, 2010

31 Weeks

Dear Baby Girl,

Well, our cravings are through the roof! I've been craving everything under the sun! But I'm trying to eat healthy for the 2 of us. I'm not going to lie, we do have a little something sweet every day. But you really seem to enjoy that. I hope I don't regret that later on. :)

This week, I've felt very alone. I don't know why. Maybe because your Uncle Barracuda couldn't come to see us. And I really missed that. Or maybe it was because we haven't had the chance to see your Auntie Lola and Uncle Guy. I'm sure that hasn't helped. Or maybe because all of our friends live at least 2 hours away. But it's been lonely around here.

We also had a tough Wednesday. But I don't want you to have to worry about that. You let me do the worrying. Your job is to grow, be healthy, and be happy. Remember that. That is your only job. And that will be your only job for a long time. I'm sorry your mommy and daddy screwed up so bad. It wasn't your fault. We love you!

But you, W, and me have had a great week! We've enjoyed lots of our fresh tomatoes. And just being together. I love feeling you inside my belly. The way you move. And even your kicks. It's amazing! And when your mommy needs a little smile, you seem to know. Because you do this fun flirty thing inside of my belly. It always makes me laugh!

XOXO Your Mommy

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

This is Tough

We went to court again today. It was so tough. T just doesn't want to acknowledge that were having a baby. The judge is so fed up with him. To tell you the truth, I thought I was going to come out on the raw end of this deal. Just because of who my hubby is. And what he does for a living.

But he's making a jackass out of himself every time we go to court. The judge had to threaten him with arresting him again. And T about had a fit when the judge ordered him to pay for my doctor's bills, all of them. From the 1st time I went to the doctor, until after our baby girl is born. He did not like that. He also ordered T to pay me spousal support. Since he makes almost 10X's as much as I do.

The crazy thing is, I never wanted any of this. I didn't want money. I didn't want any of our material goods. I just wanted out. But T didn't want to get a divorce. I don't know why. He's living with his daughter, and her mom. He's trying to make that work. But he also wants to be married to me. How is this fair?

I know that the judge is fed up. He's pissed! And now, he's making T pay in all kinds of ways. And I have no say. I'm also not going to make the judge mad. I just want a divorce by the time our little girl is born. I don't want to have to be dragging her to court too. I just hope we can get it done.

It's been a tough day. I'm ready for some ice cream. And a little relaxing. I wonder what is on TV tonight. I just need to take my mind off of the horrible day that I've had. Because we'll be back in court in 2 short weeks. XOXO

Monday, July 26, 2010

I Can't Wait for This Day!



My friend is sick. I think he has the flu. So I'm alone tonight. Since I've moved, he's made it a point to come see me every Monday evening. So I'm a little sad tonight. I'm already missing our talks and dinner. He's a pretty good cook. Unlike me. And I didn't know what to do with myself. I know. I must sound lame.

But I didn't know what to do tonight. So I decided to watch some parenting videos on YouTube. You know, from parents. About real life stuff. And I found Jeni. She has some great videos. I found her because I was looking for some videos on breastfeeding. And I found some of the best advice out there.

This video in particular, it made me cry. It's of her son's 1st birthday. And I just can't wait to be able to celebrate my baby's 1st birthday too! I'm just sad that she's not going to get the family she deserves. She deserves to have a daddy that loves her too. So this was a little bit of a mix for me. I cried. But you know what, I'm going to be the best mommy I can be for my little girl. XOXO

Friday, July 23, 2010

30 Weeks

Dear Baby Girl,

I can't believe we're only 10 weeks away from meeting! It makes me so happy!!! This week, we've been pretty relaxed. Actually, your mommy has been pretty tired. So I've been sleeping a lot. But I think that is good for us. At least my doctor agrees.

Most nights, I get home from work, and we eat dinner. W loves to just chill with us. He lays his head on my belly. I think he just wants to feel you. He's going to be a great big brother. You know, even if he's a furry, 4 legged brother. :)

We had a glucose test today too. That stuff is so horrible to drink. I'm sure you got to taste it too. What did you think? I took everything I had to keep it down. But I know that you needed it. We needed it. So that we could see if everything was good. And it was!

This week, I've been dreaming more and more about you. About your little fingers and toes. I just can't wait to meet you. But you take your time. You cook all the way! And when you're healthy and ready, your mommy will be waiting to hold you and kiss you! I love you little angel!

XOXO Your Mommy

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Suzie Q Socks



Look at what I just ordered! Aren't they too cute for words? I found them here, for $25. I didn't think that was bad. Since there are 6 pairs. And they're adorable. I just love the little bows.

I can already tell, I'm going to be stalking the mail until they get here. Oh, I just can't wait to put these on my little girl's feet. I'm getting so excited to meet her! XOXO

Monday, July 19, 2010

90210



When I was little, my parents wouldn't let me watch 90201 or Melrose Place. And I remember that's all I ever wanted to watch. But they wouldn't let me. I found this clip, and it totally reminded me of how much I used to want to watch it.

My bestie used to watch it. And she'd tell me all about the romance between Brenda and Dylan. I was just dying to watch it. How funny! But I really wanted to watch it. And I still want to. If only I could find the DVDs to this show. :) XOXO

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Chocolate Banana Smoothie



I have a very soft spot in my heart for anything banana flavored. I don't know why. But that's just the way it is. Banana milk is still my favorite thing to drink! :)

I was doing a search for a banana shake, and I found this video. Yum! It looks so good. And easy. I just happen to have everything I need to make it too. I'm going to go make one for me and my baby girl. :) XOXO

Friday, July 16, 2010

29 Weeks

Dear Baby Girl,

I've been thinking more and more about you this week. Ever since we went to go visit Baby G, I just want to meet you. It's so nice that so many of my friends are having babies. That means, lots and lots of playdates for you! 7 of my friends are having or have had a baby recently. Little one, you are going to have lots of good friends! I just have to keep you away from the boys when you get bigger. :)

This week, we haven't been up to much. I'm still a little confused with the whole time thing. I don't know why. But in case you've noticed, yup, we're going to bed later. Because I'm just not tired. Then your mommy has to drag herself out of bed in the mornings. That's why we've been taking so many naps in the evenings.

But I'm thinking you don't mind much. Neither does W. He likes our naps. I also find him sleeping under your crib a lot. I think he's just practicing for when you come home. W and I also signed up for a baby and dog class. It's in a few weeks. And I think it will be fun for all of us. :)

See how much we love you little girl! We just can't wait for you to get here. I know W is going to just love you too. And be so protect over you. We're counting down the days until October!

XOXO Your Mommy

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Inspiration



I found a new YouTuber to watch, Laci. She's amazing. And has a beautiful little girl, JJ. I found her recently. And over the last few days, I've watched all her videos.

I wanted to cry when I watched this video. Because I can sorta relate. But not really. My hubby was amazing to me. Until we lost our first baby. Everything went downhill from there. But Laci just shows me, you can do it. You deserve better.

I know that I deserve a better life. I deserve to have a man that loves me. A man who will respect and honor me. Not cheat on me, then throw it in my house. And tell me that I deserved it.

Laci is my inspiration. Just watching her in her last few videos, it gives me hope that my daughter and I are going to be OK. That we're going to make it. In the end, she is the only thing that matters. Thanks Laci for all your inspiration and hope that you've given me. :) XOXO

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Love



Isn't this set gorgeous? I know what you're going to say. But it's blue. I know. But I like it. They have a pink one too. I like both of them. But I really like this one. The blue color matches my purse. And I think this would be a great set to buy. You know, to just through in your purse when you go to the post office or the grocery store. And it's only $35!

But I'm refraining. Because all my friends keep telling me to stop buying baby stuff. Because they want to buy some stuff for me and my baby too. I know. And my baby shower is in just a few weeks. So I'm going to wait to buy this set. Even though, I love it! I mean, who doesn't like handmade? XOXO

Friday, July 9, 2010

28 Weeks

Dear Baby Girl,

We're 1 week closer. And your mommy is getting excited! I just can't believe we've made it this far! But you're so healthy. And that is all I want. A healthy baby!

I know this has been a tough week. Your mommy has cried too much. And you're probably confused in there. But I'm making things better for us. I promise. I promise you are going to have a better life than I had. I just need to get this together.

We had a great holiday weekend last weekend. We spent lots of time with your Auntie Lola, Uncle Guy, and Uncle Barracuda. Your Uncle Guy had a really great weekend. And it was neat to be there. One day, you'll get to go to those fun things too! And celebrate his successes.

And we just hung out on Sunday. Your Auntie Lola is the best cook ever! And she made us an amazing meal. We spent lots of time with our friends. Both the furry kind, and the 2 legged! :)

This week, one of my good friends C had her little girl. And we went to go visit her. Just holding her little girl made me think of you. I can't wait to be able to hold you in my arms. And I just can't wait to see you 2 playing together. Yes, your mommy has lots of friends having babies too. And we're already talking about play dates. I'm so excited!

You keep growing strong. And leave the rest to me. I know things are going to work out good for us. Because I've been praying to God for it. But I really can't wait to meet you!

XOXO Your Mommy

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Cute Hair



I really like Shandel's hair in this video. I want to cut my hair before Baby C is born. I already have short hair. But this is a cute style. I don't want to die my hair. I actually like my color right now. But I like this cut. I'm just not sure if it would look good on me or not. I guess I should probably just take the leap. After all, hair grows back! XOXO