So this is Seattle! I wish I knew what to say, my thoughts and emotions are all jumbled up right now. I was operating at 98% capacity preparing for this move from St. Louis, and I've now maxed out during this house-hunting trip. Just forming a coherent sentence is difficult! I'll do my best to get a few things down.
There are 8 Starbucks within 1 mile of our hotel. It has been sunny, cloudy, misty, and pouring rain already -- and that was all within about an hour. Mount Rainier is absolutely gorgeous. There are tons of hills here. It's very green, I love the enormous trees. There are bugs and fall colors here, both of which I was told there weren't. Other than bugs and fall colors, there is not much similarity in the scenery of the Pacific Northwest vs. the Midwest. People here look pretty normal, I don't generally feel out-of-place. Housing prices are obscenely high ($315K for a double-wide manufactured home) and many homes look quite silly. Everyone owns a black lab. Seattleites love their seafood and lite FM. The HOV lane = "high occupancy vehicle" lane (aka carpool lane) = the golden ticket of the highway. The Space Needle is pretty cool, but my heart belongs to The Arch. The pillows in our hotel are very fluffy, but they flatten like pancakes when you lay on them.
Now for the Bean update. We have officially felt the baby moving! I thought I felt something on Monday night at bedtime, but I wasn't sure. My weekly pregnancy email from babycenter.com said that many first-time moms aren't able to recognize the first signs of fetal movement, that it feels like fluttering or gas. Well, perhaps first-time moms can't recognize the feeling because they read emails from babycenter.com! I was waiting for this fluttering or gas, but it feels entirely different than that to me. The best single word I can use is a "pulse." Or to be most accurate, it feels like an itty bitty creature in my tummy is trying to punch and kick its way out. Go figure.
Anyway, Tuesday morning I enlisted DH's help and we both agreed it was our Bean. Amazing! It's a bit disconcerting and comforting at the same time -- just like every other part of this pregnancy. On Tuesday evening, I couldn't feel anything, I guess Bean was sleeping. I gave my tummy a few pokes (gently!) and oh my, did that wake the baby. Bean was punching and kicking right back. We take turns disrupting each other's sleep, I suppose. I thought it was pretty special, though -- our first communication! Mommy to Bean, Bean to Mommy. I love you already, sweetheart.