Monday, December 29, 2008

Wii wish you a merry Christmas...

First the best story (and kind of sad) from Christmas...

I walk into my parent's house and Garrett (my 7 year old nephew) runs up to me and is sooo excited to show me his new toys Santa got him. He was VERY proud of a plastic army tank and all the army men. But, the tank had lots of breakable parts, so all afternoon and evening his dad kept getting onto him about being careful with the tank or he'd be in trouble if it broke. They're trying to teach him that all these "things" cost money and not everything can be replaced.

The night goes on and we open gifts (Half-pint Hounsel got a Wii - yippee), enjoy dinner, etc. I notice that Craig and Garrett aren't downstairs. I walk upstairs into a bedroom and see Garrett looking down at the ground and Craig with the tank in his hands. Craig looks up at me and shows me a little door...that he broke off the tank. OH NO! I felt sooooo bad for Garrett. All night he had been careful with his toy and MY 30 YR OLD HUSBAND BREAKS IT!!! Craig said when he broke it Garrett looked at him with tears in his eyes and said "This is the WORST Christmas EVER!"
Poor Gare-bear...we told him we'd get him a new one - but he looked us right in the eye and said "Tita Rina - you can't get me a new one - SANTA brought it for me!"
Man I felt bad.

On a happier note...we had a fantabulous Christmas filled with making Rice Krispy treat houses, candy, gifts and the Wii. The freaking, amazing, Wii and Wii fit - Craig and I are addicted. We plan on having a Wii Olympics as a house warming party...oh yeah...I think we may have a house...just waiting to close...more on that later. The Wii is much more important!

The Crew
Sofia and I ...she's much more interested in the candy eating
Me and Garrett - umm - we weren't eating the candy :-)
Me and Maddie - ok - her sweet face can't lie - we WERE eating the candy
The fruits of our labor - YUM
Craig getting his Wii on (ew - that sounded kinda dirty)

Friday, December 26, 2008

How on earth will I live up to that????

Craig and I have really great parents and a really great family. I know a lot of people feel that way - but we REALLY do.
Besides the fact that I'm scared of messing up this kid somehow, I worry if we'll be able to be the parents our moms and dads have been to us.

Not only do they go above and beyond when it comes to gift giving, but they are generous with their time, their support, their love...the list goes on and on.

That's it for now - I can't wait to post pics of our great Christmas.

Lots of laughter, action shots as we played on Wii, modeling of our new Christmas sweaters (they have snowmen on them...rules all!).

And stay tuned for how Craig made my 7 year old nephew Garrett have the WORST CHRISTMAS EVER :-)

Thursday, December 25, 2008

happy CHRIST-mas!

Twas the day of Christmas, when all through the house.
All the creatures were stirring...maybe even a mouse.

Our stockings weren't hung, it wasn't our home.
But, we still anxiously waited for Santa to come.

The gifts were still many...piled under the tree.
I unwrapped our first onesie - for our new baby.

In a home that wasn't ours, we still had each other.
So humbled and amazed - this time next year - Craig as dad - me as mother.

Our lives are a whirlwind - changing day to day.
Chaos, excitement, unstable...some might even say.

But one thing holds true, our anchor - our MIGHT.
Is the true meaning of Christmas - the birth of our Christ.

Unsteady lives but unshakeable faith.
Make our uncertain futures - in Him - always great.

No matter the cicrumstance - one thing is for sure.
The love of Christ Jesus - so powerful and pure.

So - as we celebrate this day and get ready for a New Year.
No matter the obstacle - we must pray to not fear...

The questions, the worries, the doubts in our lives.
Use prayer - and always lift it up - to our loving Christ.

Happy birthday - sweet Jesus - the sweetest baby boy.
Who from His birth, life, resurrection - brings our lives so much JOY.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

I think my doctor is going to fire me as a patient

I am THAT patient. The one that asks a million questions - and asks the same question 5 different ways because I want to make SURE he understood.

The problem with being in med school is that I am studying for the USMLE - and that means that I am learning about every genetic defect, every and anything that can go wrong in development, blah, blah, blah.

My doctor is great - he has been my doctor for over 10 years and is a colleague of my mom's. So, he treats me like a daughter and knows that my concerns are from the fact that I am getting all this information pumped in my head.

Craig has been to all my prenatal appointments and plans on going to every one until it starts to become too frequent. I've decided Craig should get a reward for just being my husband. I am SO difficult (at least I know it). He is the calm in our family while I am a whirlwind of chaos, worry, and go-go-go.

Half-pint Hounsel was moving and baby's heart beat was strong. My weight is right where it should be. My doc actually rolled his eyes at me when I asked if I was gaining too much too fast. He knows how OCD I am about my weight, but I figure if I am track I should put on about 20-25 lbs (YIKES!).

We did not do the NT scan and decided that we'll wait until the routine AFP test at 17 weeks. In about 6-7 weeks we'll find out if it's a boy or a girl but we just want healthy.

Continued prayers for Half-pint and our family would be greatly appreciated.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Happy birthday to me - a few days late

I turned 29 on December 19th...on the downhill slope to 30!!!

I have really great friends and a wonderful family.

This is a few days late in posting - but I really wanted to post something thanking my family and friends who called, emailed, sent cards, sent gifts, sang songs, etc, etc on my special day.

I have been blessed tremendously and love those that are so giving of their love.

Thanks to all of you who made my first day as a 29 year old super duper special!

Saturday, December 20, 2008

GET IN MY BELLY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I had a pretty rough 11 weeks of pregnancy in the beginning. I officially enter my 2nd trimester tomorrow and my appetite is back...and back with a vengeance.

I felt much like my friend Ashley does now (she's 6 weeks pregnant). I was so sick - vomiting, nausea - so tired - it was really bad. But, now, watch out...if you are a potato, fried, chocolate, resemble a pizza or plate of spaghetti - you may as well walk in my mouth...cuz I'm gonna eat you.

All my friends who have been pregnant say you get more fat in you maternal fat stores where you typically gain weight. Now here's the deal... I gain weight in stomach, my back, FACE.

Seriously - I look like I'm having an anaphylactic reaction and someone may need to intubate (I"m just throwing in medical terms so that I don't lose too much knowledge while I'm on hiatus).

I went to Dominica for 16 months and lost 20 lbs. I've been pregnant for 12 weeks and have gain 5 to say it's all baby...wellllll....

Unless this baby NEEDS:
1. French fries
2. Chick-Fil-A chicken minis
3. Milkshakes
4. Pizza twice a week
5. Kettle chips - barbecue flavored
6. Fudge
7. Spaghetti - or any italian food
8. Filipino food - eggrolls anyone (Shauna - I'm talking to you)
9. Cheeseburgers with onion rings
10. Anything that rhymes with - ocolate....

Then - I think I can only blame myself and my insatiable need to EAT, EAT, EAT!!!

Here's proof of my binges:

Monday, December 15, 2008

Bet you're confused - and you may have more questions but for now - just check this out (man that was a long title)

I made this big deal about you reading a post before I wrote about this summary of the post that wasn't an Elf Yourself Hounsel talked about how three trees had big dreams for themselves. But, as time passed, each tree had different outcomes than what they had originally thought of. As you read the story, they each realize that their dreams were so little compared to what God had in store for them. Sometimes our future and our plans may not be the ones God has for us now but He'll reveal the great plans He has for you when the time is right.

So...what does this all mean???

Have you noticed anything new on my blog...ok...I guess I'm asking the three people that read this...but anyways...what's different?

Before you start to stress out - I've changed the title. It no longer states "Czarina's Journey to Dr. Hounsel."

I haven't been kicked out of school nor did I fail out but God threw a curve ball at me a couple of months ago. I am a planner and I had this life planned for Craig and I all set - we'd move for clinicals til 2011, I would finish residency, and then I'd come back to Dallas and start practicing medicine. Isn't it funny - how when we think WE have control over our lives - God reminds us in a BIG way that it's really HIS plan that we should be praying for and not our own.

God's timing is perfect - although I may fight it daily - His will for me is perfect. So - I've just been asked - for right now - to go on a different journey and I know that once I am at the point to where He wants me - medical school will pick right up where it needs to be.

I am on a different Journey now - not one I thought I would be on for a long time - but one I have prayed about since I could remember. I am humbled that I've been blessed with this responsibility and know that as long as I (I should have been saying 'we' for Craig and I") - we - put God first always - we'll have all that we need on this exciting journey we're now on.

Baby Hounsel
Due June 28, 2009

Down Home with the Hounsels

Send your own ElfYourself eCards

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Prologue to my next read :-)

Once there were three trees on a hill in the woods.
They were discussing their hopes and dreams when
the first tree said, 'Someday I hope to be a great
treasure chest. I could be filled with gold, silver
and precious gems. I could be decorated with an
intricate carving and everyone would see the beauty.'
Then the second tree said, 'Someday I will be a
mighty ship. I will take Kings and Queens across the
waters and sail to the corners of the world. People
will feel safe in me because of the strength of my
Finally the third tree said, 'I want to grow to be
the tallest and straightest Tree in the forest. People
will see me on top of the hill, look up to my branches,
and think of the heavens and God and how close to
them I am reaching. I will be the greatest tree of all
time and people will always remember me.'
After a few years of praying that their dreams would
come true, a group of woodsmen came upon the trees.
When one came to the first tree he said, 'This looks
like a strong tree, I think I should be able to sell the
wood to a carpenter, and he began cutting it down. The
tree was happy, because he knew the carpenter would
make him into a treasure chest.

At the second tree the woodsman said, 'This looks like
a strong tree. I will be able to sell it to the shipyard.'
The second tree was happy because he knew he was on
his way to becoming a mighty ship.
When the woodsmen came upon the third tree, the tree
was frightened because he knew that if they cut him
down his dreams would not come true. One of the men
said,'I don't need anything special from my tree, I'll
take this one,' and he cut it down.
When the first tree arrived at the carpenters, he was
made into a feed box for animals. He was then placed in
a barn and filled with hay. This was not at all what he
had prayed for.
The second tree was cut and made into a small fishing
boat. His dreams of being a mighty ship and carrying
Kings had come to an end.
The third tree was cut into large pieces, and left alone
in the dark.
The years went by, and the trees forgot about their dreams.
Then one day, a man and woman came to the barn. She gave
birth and they placed the baby in the hay in the feed box
that was made from the first tree. The man wished that he
could have made a crib for the baby, but this manger would
have to do. The tree could feel the importance of this event
and knew that it had held the greatest treasure of all time.
Years later, a group of men got in the fishing boat made from
the second tree. One of them was tired and went to sleep.
While they were out on the water, a great storm arose and
the tree didn't think it was strong enough to keep the men
safe. The men woke the sleeping man, and he stood and said
'Peace' and the storm stopped. A t this time,the tree knew
that it had carried the King of Kings in its boat.
Finally, someone came and got the third tree.
It was carried through the streets as the
people mocked the man who was carrying it.
When they came to a stop, the man was nailed
to the tree and raised in the air to die at the top
of a hill. When Sunday came, the tree came to
realize that it was strong enough to stand at the top
of the hill and be as close to God as was possible,
because Jesus had been crucified on it.

The moral of this story is that when things don't seem
to be going your way, always know that God has a plan for
you. If you place your trust in Him, God will give you great
Each of the trees got what they wanted, just not in the way they
had imagined.

We don't always know what God's plans are for us. We just know
that His Ways are not our ways, but His ways are always best.

Saturday, December 13, 2008

"Je ne parle pas Francais..."

TRANSLATION: I do not speak French.
This phrase was a MUST for Craig when we were in Paris. Although he only used in twice, both times were crucial :-)

I took French for 4 years in high school and 3 years in college...and I know just about as much as Craig. Well...I know a little more and was able to communicate ok while we were there.

Paris was dirty. Dirtier than I had remembered. There was a lot of graffiti and trash everywhere. But, it didn't outshine the absolutely stunning architecture of the buildings.
We hit the hot spots - Arc de Triomphe, Champs de Elysee, Musee D'orsay, Louvre, Eiffel Tower, and the palace of Versailles.

I feel bad for didn't get our full attention. It's not her fault we were homesick and tired. It's not her fault the people didn't speak English. It's not her fault that the time we aren't cultured and got bored at the museums....who gets bored at the Louvre looking at the Mona Lisa and Venus de Milo? WE DID!!

But, we loved our late night strolls (does 7:30pm count as late night????) down the Champs where street vendors were peddling yummy street food, handmade gifts, snake necklaces...oh Paris! We loved you and we are sorry we did not take advantage of our time with you...but...we'll always have Paris (wah, wah, wah).

***I tried to make the slide show all romantic-y but there is a random honking of a horn during the song***

Click to play Paris!
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Sunday, December 7, 2008

London rules....

this is the COOLEST city I have ever been to. We ended our night early since we go to Paris tomorrow. I can't wait to share all the sights and experiences we have had.
Craig and I with "Ed" aka Queen's serious

Craig and I at the Arsenal game :-)

Craig and I at Trafalgar Square

What a blessing!

 Baby Birthday Ticker Ticker