exam season's greatest hits

I am up to 3-4 hours per day of study. This is what I should always be doing, but I usually fizzle out at the 2 hour mark. I guess the 2nd trimester and the reintroduction of coffee has really improved my focus. (Don't worry, I'm only having one 1/2 decaf cup and my doctor says it's okay.)

The last few weeks have been a bit crazy... as always is the case as the exam approaches (next Thurs for anyone curious.) I have continued, as is my custom, to have a life. I just don't take as much care in documenting it as I normally would. I don't have any pictures from my "girls' night" at Mamma Mia! (on stage.) The music and costumes were great, but (and I can't believe the blasphemy of this statement) the movie was better.
The same weekend, I went to the circus for the first time, ever. It was small, but having nothing to compare it to, I was the most value for $10 I've had in a long, long time. A little of everything, and plenty of "akkk - don't die!" moments.
A highlight is that right after the show, Madhuri gave me a big bag of these maternity clothes.... pretty much everything I will need. Study, study, study and fast forward to last weekend... my BFF in college, Tiffany (who now lives 2 hours away in the desert) came, picked me up, and I had a weekend vacation on her turf. She took me for a day trip to Lake Isabella and a quaint town called Kernville where we shopped in some antique stores, got lunch and visited an old museum.

We spent a lot of time catching up on three years time, just hanging out at her place. We also got a drive through tour of the Naval base that she has been working at for the past couple of years as a civilian mathematician for the DOD. Then she drove me back to town and we caught a few hours at the Page Natural History Museum (Tar Pits) which I found out I get free admission through my work! You can look into the area where they are cleaning a big find, including a well preserved columbian mammoth. The tusk is longer than I am tall, I think.
As far as the whole preggers thing goes, I feel significantly better... appetite, energy, etc. Still wouldn't characterize any part of my life as "normal" -- but I can handle this part. I am infinitely greatful for the massage chair topper I got for christmas. I am trying not to think about everything too much (study, study) for now, which is hard. I let myself read a bit today and while sitting very still reading, I felt something. A flutter. Not gas. A flutter! It's early but within the range of plausibility - I think I felt the baby move! Wow. Still no pic of the bump to share. It just feels like the pizza and burritos I was once able to 'suck in' is now sitting out several inches - and who wants to see that? I know, fans. You do. Trust me. No one wants me to be a cute pregnant more than I do. But, you know not everyone has a cute little bump. I want to be one of those ladies who is normal from the back and then she turns around and you think - "wow... she's smuggling a basketball... I wasn't expecting that." But, I'm pretty sure that I'm going to swell up everywhere (given the current disappearance of my waist from every angle.) Don't worry. I will definitely post a pic - but let's just let it get it past the point of being mis-identified as a failed diet/exercise plan first.
Study, study, etc. Now you are all caught up to date and I should go study some more.

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