Friday, December 28, 2007

Sam's drinking problem

Sam is turning out to be a good little baby. I'm still running into some problems with nursing, but thankfully I have a good support system. My mother's very good friend used to be a maternity nurse in the Netherlands. English is this woman's second language and she's been sending my mother e-mails on advice to pass on to me for "Sam's drinking problem."

She currently has me eating some kind of...well...I don't exactly know what it is. It's called "De Ruijter" and it consists of tiny orange and white hard balls that look a little bit like Nerds and taste an awful lot like licorice. I don't know what it is or what it does, but supposedly it will help with Sam's drinking problem.


Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Monday, December 17, 2007

Samuel James Drury

Samuel James Drury arrived early this morning at 12:44 am. Precisely on his due date! John had been telling me all along, "We Drury's arrive on time." He was right.

7 pounds 2 ounces
20.5 inches
Lots of dark hair
We're all doing great

I'll write more later, but for now feel free to check out the pics that John posted on his blog.

Monday, December 10, 2007

The time I didn't have a baby

Last week John lost his gloves. I happened to find them mid-morning in our linen closet tucked between towels. I thought that was rather humorous, so I decided to give him a call alerting him of my discovery.

It didn't occur to me that a phone call in the middle of class might might indicate a laboring wife. Poor John bounded out of his class only to discover I had merely delivered his gloves.

I'll admit, a ringing phone has thrown me into a tizzy as well. Every single time my phone rings my first thought is, "I wonder if the baby's ready to come!" Crazy, I know.

In the meantime I'm trying to plan something fun everyday between now and when he arrives. My mom arrives tomorrow and after that my days will be filled with The American Boy's Choir, manicures, Settlers, and my adorable nieces (3-year-old Ella has been calling her tights her "panty toes").

I think I've also started nesting. I baked eleven loaves of bread yesterday.

Thursday, December 06, 2007

Monday, December 03, 2007

I tell you the truth...

One by one I've been looking at items in my house thinking, "I tell you the truth, this fill-in-the-blank will not pass away until this baby is born.

I tell you the truth, this library book is not due until this baby is born.

I tell you the truth, this bottle of shampoo will not pass away until this baby is born.

When I get to the point where I can say, "I tell you the truth, this carton of eggnog will not pass away until this baby is born." Then I'll know I'm really close.

In the meantime, I'm enjoying week 38.

Friday, November 23, 2007

Okay, so it wasn't a cold...

Welcome to yet another blog post that revolves entirely around me and my health.

Apparently I don't have a cold. I have pneumonia. Pneumonia is not fun.

I had assumed that the pain in my chest and upper back was pregnancy related...after all, everything else is due to my growing womb and surging hormones. I don't know how many times I've called my doctor about my itchy neck, shooting pain down my leg, or it-feels-like-I-tried-to-dry-swallow-a-huge-horse-pill only to be told, "Yeah, that's just the pregnancy."

However, after a prenatal massage that only seemed to make my back worse, I began to wonder if it was something else...something, perhaps, that might leave me maimed...or worse.

I was in some serious pain when I went to bed on Tuesday night and gave John these instructions: "If I don't wake up in the morning, tell the doctors that it had something to do with the left side of my chest."

I thought I had my bases covered until I asked him to repeat what he would tell the medics and he replied, "Um, your side hurts?"

"Which side?" I prompted.

"Uh, your right?"

In his defense, sometimes I walk a fine line between making jokes and making my death wishes known. And given that it was 11:30 pm and he had just flown in straight from San Diego after a good but brainy conference I think his response was understandable.

So anyway, like I said earlier, I have pneumonia. It hurts when I breath, yawn, cough, or laugh (which is much harder to stifle now that John is home entertaining me). Thankfully, I have not gotten the hiccups yet. I can't lie down without exacerbating the pain, so I've had some lovely nights trying to sleep sitting up.

I think I'm on the mend, but from what I understand, these symptoms can linger on and on. Under normal circumstances, pain when I breath wouldn't be all that bad except for the fact that in a few short weeks I will be embarking upon the lovely journey of labor and delivery where I'm told breathing is of considerable importance. Can they administer epidurals to one's lungs?

So pneumonia combined with my midwives prediction that I could deliver in as little as two or three weeks has me a wee bit apprehensive. Your prayers are welcomed.

Monday, November 19, 2007

Feeling sorry for myself...

I'm feeling very sorry for myself. I'm at home in drizzly New Jersey by myself with a bad cold, a backache, and a body that has been pregnant for the past 36 weeks (John is in sunny San Diego at AAR where I'm sure he is drinking lemonaid and mingling with movie stars).

My most pathetic moment came yesterday afternoon when I mustered up the energy to go to the grocery store to buy a few items necessitated by my lovely cold (of course, the cold hit after John left for California, so I couldn't send him to do my bidding). After purchasing my items I stopped at the grocery store's Starbucks kiosk to purchase a caramel apple cider. After placing it in the cart's drink holder, I proceeded to push the cart to my car. In the middle of the parking lot, in the pouring rain, I hit a bump. My full cup of caramel apple cider flew up in the air and landed upside-down in one of my grocery bags, filling the bag with sticky goodness. I couldn't tell if I wanted to laugh or cry, so I just stood there for a minute or so. Did I mention it was raining at the time?

Not wanting my lovely trunk to get sticky, I proceeded to take out each sticky item in the bag and wipe it down the with the new box of kleenex I had just purchased. Whenever I have a cold I "reward" myself by buying the softest, most expensive tissues, and I was so annoyed to have to waste my tissues-with-lotion on cleaning up a spill.

Even as I'm writing this, I'm realizing that my pathetic moment doesn't sound nearly as pathetic as if felt. The black and whiteness of this post does not do justice to the pathetic-ness of my situation. You'll just have to trust me that it was very pathetic and that you would have felt very, very sorry for me had you seen me standing there in the pouring rain with a plastic bag full of chicken noodle soup and apple cider.

Wednesday, November 07, 2007

Using my Belly for Evil

Last Wednesday night I used my belly for evil.

For the past four Halloweens, John and I have purchased multiple bags of candy, only to be left with a hefty stash of leftovers. I could count the amount of tricker-treaters on one hand. And so this year, I thought it prudent to purchase a single bag of candy.

Bad idea. An hour into festivities we ran out.

John was immediately taken with the idea of grabbing some candy from friends. I, on the other hand, thought it much more reasonable to raid our cupboards and fill the empty bowl with the individually wrapped Lifesavers we had acquired over the months (I figured they were better than my left-over Preggie-Pops).

Since Lifesavers are small, I told our tricker-treaters that they could take two candies...which I thought was very generous of me. Meanwhile, John kept up with the mantra that we needed to go find "real candy" to give out. I finally had to acquiesce after two girls politely thanked me for their Lifesavers before one of them loudly whispered to the other, "This is why we should have started earlier."

I closed the door and announced, "That's it! I'm getting some candy." So I skulked across the street to our neighbor's apartment. They were not home, but had three large vats of candy outside with a sign informing it's readers to take and enjoy. After a swift look around, I filled both of the kangaroo pockets of my sweatshirt with multitudes of candy and hurried back to my apartment, prepared for questions I might encounter along my way.

"Mandy, is that a Butterfinger in your sweatshirt?"
"No, it's his elbow."
"Is that a Snickers bar sticking out of your shirt?"
"Hmmm, must be his heel."
"Looks like you've got a Reeces Peanut Butter Cup there."
"It's his butt. The doctors have said it's square."

I made it back to our apartment, replenished our pathetic stash, and made our neighborhood a happier place. But I couldn't shake the feeling that I had used my belly for evil. I had used my son to break the 8th commandment.

I suppose I should go over to our neighbors and confess...actually, I think I just did. Sorry Sarah and Andrew.

Saturday, October 27, 2007

I'm Buying A Sympathy Belly

That's it. I'm buying a sympathy belly. You know, one of those bellies that you velcro on to your husband so he can get an idea of what it's like to carry around a 7 pound baby in your midsection.

But this belly won't be for John. John has actually been very sympathetic and sweet and is in no way in need of simulating pregnancy. This belly is for me to wear after the baby born. "Why?" you might ask? Because people are so stinkin' nice to pregnant women.

People smile at me. People open doors for me. People let me in front of them in the grocery line. People talk to me. Cars stop to let me cross the street. Salespeople carry my purchases. Teenagers love me (I don't know how many times I've been stopped by a flock of teenage girls). People speak softly and sweetly to me. Waitresses trip over their own feet to bring me another glass of water before my first one is empty. AND I LIVE IN JERSEY! Do you know how unusual treatment like this is here? Let me put it this way, if the fifty states were to compete in a pageant, New Jersey would probably not be the state to walk away with the prize for congeniality. Since I've had the baby bump, I have not found a single store who has apologized that they "don't have a public restroom." (In fact, just yesterday I was at a store that is notorious for not sharing their restroom. Nevertheless, my pregnant self was escorted to a restroom in the back of the store. Finding that the door was jammed shut , a flurry of saleswomen immediately began screaming for a large, burly man named Javier to throw his weight against the stubborn wood. Javier arrived. The door was opened. And we all left feeling very satisfied.)

I'm going to buy a sympathy belly so that a year from now, if I'm having a bad day, I can strap on my little buddy, drive to the mall, and get myself some fresh, authentic Jersey love.

Monday, October 22, 2007

A royal devil child

Okay, which baby doctor office would YOU choose? Would you choose the office on:

2 Princess Road


666 Plainsboro Road

Do I want my son to be a little princess or a devil child?

Friday, October 12, 2007

I feel like a hobbit

I'm 9.5 weeks away from delivering this baby. Well, technically I'm 7.5-11.5 weeks away from the baby's expected arrival. Apparently there are two week windows before and after our Dec. 17th due date where a birth would be welcomed by our midwives. So we're talking roughly from Thanksgiving to New Year's Eve (yes, that means you have about 10 weeks left to shop for Christmas...I'm adding that little reminder because I'm flipping out a bit over how close this all seems and I thought by adding in the shopping component I might at least be able to get some of you super-planners to flip out a bit with me).

It's 5:55 am and I've just finished my first mini-breakfast. This is actually a breakthrough for me.

For the past week I've woken up multiple times each night with horrible stomachaches. Only recently has it occurred to me that I might be feeling hunger pains. My stomach is now safely squashed into a small space some where around my rib cage which has meant I've had a more difficult time deciphering the gastational clues.

Anyway, every night for the past three days I've woken up around 12, 2, 4, and 6 am each time thinking, "When will it get to 7 am so I can get up and eat breakfast?"

And then around 5:30 am this morning it occurred to me that I could take a detour through the kitchen after passing through the bathroom for my first breakfast. It was a breakthrough! I'm not quite sure why that didn't occur to me earlier. I'm a bit muddled when it comes to nocternal thought processing. Hopefully labor will not strike in the middle of the night or I imagine I'll be popping Tums and rearranging pillows until that magically, sense-inducing 7 am alarm clock rings.

Okay, back to bed with me for one final hour of sleep.

Friday, September 07, 2007

The thought I just entertained

I'm currently working on two different lists. LIST ONE: Things to do before school starts. LIST TWO: Things to do before the baby comes. And in the course of my list writing, I had a momentary bout with insanity and contemplated whether or not I should put our Christmas tree up now so that I wouldn't have to deal with it later.

I quickly realized that was a dumb idea, but I'm still a little troubled that this idea emerged in the first place.

Sunday, September 02, 2007

While I've enjoyed various milestones throughout this pregnancy, I've been particularly eager to hit the "stranger" milestone. I've been waiting for weeks for a stranger to approach and ask me when I'm due. At 6 months and 4 days I hit that milestone. It was not, however, exactly what I expected.

The following conversation took place while waiting in a checkout line at Staples:

Stranger: Hey, when are you due?
Me: Dec. 17th.
Stranger: Is it a boy or a girl?
Me: It's a boy.
Stranger: Yeah, I always preferred having a boy first.
Me: Oh, actually, I didn't really mind.
Stranger: Well, I guess it doesn't matter so much nowadays. Back in ancient times people greatly prefferred Man**.
Me: Oh.
Stranger: It was Man who did all of the strategic battle planning and fighting in wars.
Me: Oh.
Stranger: So people really wanted Man since it was Man who fought in the battles.
Me: Oh.
Stranger: And back in ancient Israel the Man would wait outside while the woman was in labor and the Man would run inside when he heard a baby cry. If it was Man he was happy, but if it was a girl he was dissapointed.
Me: Oh. (Long pause) I think that checkout line is shorter. Uh. bye.

**As you can see, I've capitalized "man" in this post. After relaying this story to John he was pretty convinced the stranger was speaking about men in an upper-case kind of way.

Saturday, August 04, 2007

We Have a Pronoun


(Thanks to Ken Schenck for this apt description.)

Friday, July 27, 2007

Mathematics, Keanu Reeves and Childbirth: A Defense of Christin's Belly

My beaultiful and naturally slender friend, Christin, is six-and-a-half-months pregnant and is enduring insensitive remarks from people who think she should be "bigger." I've come up with ten comebacks...perhaps you could add to my list.

The Top Ten Responses to the Rude (and in my Opinion, Jealous) People who are Commenting on my Friend's Smallness:

1. "My doctor's not worried and neither am I." (Kind of a boring response, but I imagine this would be the only comeback that Heloise would endorse.)
2. "Yes, this beautiful bone structure and glorious metabolism tend to evoke a jealous response."
3. "How much do you weigh?"
4. "Pregnant? I'm not pregnant."
5. "Too bad you can't give me your spare tire to even us out."
6. "Ah yes, it's not fair. I get a killer body and an easier labor."
7. "No speak English." OR "Times like this I wish I couldn't speak English."
8. "Have you seen the movie 'Speed?' Yeah, well if I get over ____ pounds I'll blow up." (My personal favorite.)
9. Tell them how far along you are in weeks and walk away while they are still doing the math.
10. "Actually, I'm having twins." (This will really throw them for a loop...and while it's entirely false, it might be a bit fun for you.)

Any additions you'd care to make?

(Christin's blog: -- I have yet to figure out how to include links on my mac)

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Sneezing my way to a 13-pounder

There is a lot about pregnancy that the doctors don't tell you. That's why I've been so thankful for my friend, Christin, who is 10 weeks ahead of me and has kept me dutifully informed. When I was about six weeks along she warned me about the lovely round lateral pains of the second trimester. They're essentially growing pains of the womb that kick in with swift or unexpected movement.

These round lateral pains have bothered me the most upon sneezing (which, maybe it's just my imagination, but sneezing has become much more violent since I becam pregnant). Painful sneezes have brough about a new fear. Stick with me here for a minute...if round lateral pains indicate the stretching and growing of the womb, and sneezing brings about intense round lateral pains, does that mean that everytime I sneeze my baby is going through a growth spurt?

I can't help but fear that I'm sneezing my way to a 13-pounder. That's illogical, isn't it? Someone please disprove my theory.

Sunday, June 24, 2007

Six things I've learned in the past 15 weeks of pregnancy

1. People like to scare pregnant women. I don’t know how many conversations I’ve been a part of that go something like this:

Person: “So, are you tired?” (said with great compassion)

Me: “Yes.”

Person: “You can’t even begin to comprehend the meaning of tired.” (said with great malice).

People especially seem to like to scare pregnant youth pastors: "You like teenagers now, but I can't wait to see you when you have a 16-year-old terror.

2. Morning sickness does not always occur in the morning. It’s been night sickness for me.

3. Some people like to touch your belly…even if you don’t have one yet.

4. Apparently, I’m wearing a sticker that reads, “Hello my name is: Momma!” As far as I’m concerned, there’s only one person who can properly use that term…and that person’s vocal chords have only recently formed.

5. If a pregnant woman’s nausea is offset by the smell of anything minty, she should not live on the third floor of a dentist’s office.

6. I’m a bit of a food aversion/craving hypochondriac. Two of my very good friends are currently pregnant. When one friend said she drank cranberry juice all day long, I was delighted to discover that I, too, wanted to drink cranberry juice all day long. Not so delightful was when this same friend confessed an aversion to water. I suddenly realized that yes, water made me throw up as well.

Thursday, May 31, 2007

It's Called a Baby

I'm very leery of statistics. Three weeks ago I made my IWU students read an article by Christian Smith debunking some popular stats floating around the Evangelical world. It's not that I don't like statistics, it's that I don't trust them without some thorough data backing them up.

However, I entered into a new relationship with statistics on Easter weekend. Right before Easter, John and I learned that I was pregnant with our first child (yeah, by the way, I'm pregnant!). Our excitement gave way to fear as we received some discouraging reports about levels that were lower than the doctors would have liked. We entered into a lengthy period of doctors visits, blood tests, and continually hearing the phrase, "...this is cause for concern."

Prior to my decision to seriously limit my time on Google, I spent countless hours on-line looking for statistics that would give us hope.

Eventually, we started receiving some good news, and I began to rejoice at hitting certain milestones. I knew the stats of keeping a baby after five weeks...after seeing the heartbeat...after hearing the heartbeat...after the first trimester. My anxiety began to melt as we entered into these phases...I clung to each statistic along the way.

And then somewhere along the way I realized this wasn't a stat, this was a baby. I wasn't calculating odds, I was growing a life. This was not a statistical report; this was a gift that God has entrusted to us for however long he has appointed. We are supposed to nurture this life for however long a season God has ordained. This child belongs to God.

Lord willing we will get to see this Little D sometime in mid-December. If this little one cooperates (and everyone has already told me it won't), this baby will arrive between semesters.

Here's a picture. Little D is 2 inches long with a heart rate of 179. We saw the little one bouncing around like a pinball machine--we even got a little wave. And yes, I am thrilled to report that everything looks healthy! The doctor said this little one is very active.

I told my students in youth group last night. A 7th grader asked if she could pray for me. Here's what she said: "Um, God. Please help Pastor Amanda to feel better. And please help her baby to grow bigger than two inches. And, uh, help Pastor Amanda to be happy and the baby to be happy. Yup."

Yeah, I kinda think "yup" and "amen" are about the same, too.

Friday, May 25, 2007

The time when our apartment did not blow up

This is a story from 2003. It's a story about the time when our apartment did not blow up.

John and I had subletted our apartment for a summer and when we returned home we noticed it smelled...different. It was not necessarily a bad smell, it just wasn't our smell. It didn't smell like us. So I immediately set to work lighting candles, opening windows, and waving doors open and shut to try to regain the Drury scent (whatever that might be).

As I paused to sniff the air yet again, I realized there was something familiar to the smell. Something was burning.

I did a quick glance around the apartment to make sure there were not any open flames. While I did not see any open flames, I noticed that the smell seemed to be considerably stronger in the kitchen. I knelt beside an outlet, took a whiff, and jumped back by the strong burning smell I had taken in. I quickly walked over to another outlet nearby, took a sniff, and encountered the same burning smell. I went from outlet to outlet in our 400 square foot apartment, each time finding a strong burning smell.

I hurried into the bathroom, smelled the outlet, and reached to grab John a towel (he was in the shower...he didn't know our apartment was about to blow up). As I opened my mouth to tell him we had to leave I caught a look at my reflection in the mirror...I was missing a rather large chunk of my hair.

Apparently, while lighting candles I managed to light my head on fire. And every time I knelt down to smell an outlet the singed endings of my hair were coming into my line of smell.

That's my story.

Sunday, April 08, 2007

Happy Day of Resurrection!

Last Sunday night (Palm Sunday) I showed part of the Visual Bible "Matthew" DVD to my students. Since we were not meeting on Easter evening, I went ahead and showed them the death and resurrection scenes as well.

As the DVD ended I heard a new 7th grader lean over to her friend and whisper, "I liked the ending."

I do too.

Monday, March 19, 2007

Theological Balderdash Part 2

Submitted definitions by teenagers:

1. To take a cow pie in your sister's face.
2. The breaking and/or effacing of tinker toys.
3. Any harm done to Tinkerbell.
4. Still living, not extinct.
5. To shoot or eat the poop of a cow with a funny look on your face. (Courtesy of middle school boys if you couldn't tell.)

1. The study of your mom.
2. The philosophy of complete hatred towards gnomes of all types.
3. The cure for those who shoot and/or eat the poop of a cow with a funny look on their face (once again, thanks to the middle school boys).

1. It's what happens when Batman loses his garage door opener for the bat cage
2. A study of the reproductive process of flowers.
3. The study of the Episcopalian faith.
4. The study of those who are said "P-Oed."

1. The study of superheroes eating and/or slurping soup while on the job.
2. A disease where one finds himself believing he is Superman.
3. When you love Superman's tights.

1. The ability to harm someone.
2. The idea of using a hammer in every situation.
3. The study of Halmark.
4. The study of those who are obsessed with stealing ham from Genuardi's.

1. The ability to pick your nose at the speed of light.
2. When a symphony plays theological show tunes ("525,600 Bibles").
3. When you know that Steve did something on purpose.

Thursday, February 08, 2007

Ecclesial Bloopers

Blooper #1:

In a move reminiscent of the old game "telephone," a recent press release from our church underwent a series of unflattering, unintended changes. Below is the original ad followed by the subsequent changes that emerged in the editing process.

"DivorceCare for Kids at Doylestown United Methodist Church."
"Divorceare for Kids at Doylestown United Methodist Church."
"Divorce are for Kids at Doylestown United Methodist Church."

It was finally published in the Intelligencer in all of it's glory reading...

"Divorce is for Kids at Doylestown United Methodist Church."

Yeah, that's not so good.

Blooper #2:

Apparently there are some preschool teachers at our church who do not enunciate as well as they should. There are approximately 40 preschoolers running around our church who refer to me as "Master Amanda." I kinda like it.

Sunday, January 14, 2007

Ode to the Devil

I have a vivid childhood memory of sitting in my bedroom and singing anti-Satan songs with my sister. We were both the composers and lyricists of these songs which they revolved around words that we normally were not allowed to use. So we danced around my bedroom singing, "Satan, you're so stupid," and, "The devil is dumb."

Apparently my mother heard us from the hallway and popped her head through the door.

"What are you girls doing?"

"We're singing songs about how bad Satan is." We responded.

My very smart mother took a moment to think before replying, "Don't you think Satan would like it even less if you were singing about how great Jesus was? Why spend your time focusing on Satan when you could be focusing on God?"

She left the room and we began singing again, making up new lyrics as we went along.

I was treating the devil as if he were an equal and opposing force of God--God's opponent in a cosmic arm-wrestling match that would only be resolved at the end of time. It wasn't that I was taking the devil too was that I was not taking God serious enough.

I was reminded of the above story when I came across this advice from Karl Barth:

"Everyone who has to contend with unbelief should be advised that he ought not to take his own unbelief too seriously. Only faith is to be taken seriously; and if we have faith as a grain of mustard seed, that suffices for the devil to have lost his game." (Barth, Dogmatics in Outline, pp.20-21.)

I find these thoughts very comforting. The doubts I may encounter in my spiritual journey deserve attention, but the gravity of my doubt, no matter how large it may seem, pales in comparison to even a tiny grain of faith.