Pregnancy

BP3-0: 26 week scoop + WIWS

It's been a while since I gave an update on the bun in my oven (especially since I somehow managed to keep up with weekly and monthly pregnancy updates with the last two) so I figured I may as well share what he/she and I have been up to the last 8 weeks. 

That's right. We still haven't found out our little sweet potato's gender. I was quite proud of myself for making it through our 20 week ultrasound without peeking at the goods. The tech was super speedy when scoping out that general 'area' so it would have been a quick glance anyway. I did have to remind my mother that there was no peeking aloud, which she begrudgingly respected. The rest of the scan was great, however longer than I remember the others being, and baby looked practically perfect (in every way). BP3-0 was a little stubborn in giving us a profile shot but we got some good ones, including a few with his/her hand up by his/her ears (just like big bro) and some impressively long feet (just like big sis). I'm still lacking any kind of gut feeling as to boy or girl and K isn't helping by continuing to switch back and forth on what she thinks I'm having. 

I am happy and greatly relieved to say that I've finally gotten out of the horrible migraine, nausea and extreme food aversion stage. It stuck with me until about 20 weeks so I'm now reveling in the long-awaited feel-good part of pregnancy! I can eat pretty much anything without feeling errpy (except for when I tried to add spinach to my scrambled eggs a few days ago... gag city) and my recent growth, both in weight and bump size, are proof!  At my 24 week check up my midwife kept commenting on how much my belly had grown since last seeing me, and how active baby was as we both watched my belly bounce all around! I measured closer to 26 weeks than 24 which is definitely a shift for me considering my last two pregnancies I consistently measured small. So either this baby will be huge, this baby will come early, or this baby has soaked up all the food I've finally been able to eat and I just need to catch up with myself. We shall see! For now I'm trying to focus a lot more on my nutrition to make up for what I missed in those early months. I'm looking forward to warmer weather (for many reasons) so I can start tossing back some smoothies with hidden greens and protein! 

Another difference in this pregnancy has been the unexpected hip and pelvic pain. I dealt with a little round ligament pain before and some slight discomfort in my hips in the last weeks but nothing like this, so focused on my pelvic bone and hips. It comes and goes and I'm finding relief where I can but as baby grows it's feeling more and more like SPD (Symphysis Pubis Dysfunction). It's making me feel like I'm much further along than I am, and it's messing with my head a little, but I'm happy to endure a little discomfort here and there in place of feeling so sick and gross like before. However the times when it feels like my pelvis is going to break in half are definitely not fun. 

My Braxton Hicks contractions are in full swing and giving me some great opportunities to practice relaxation. They say teachers make the worst students and I've been a prime example of that this time around when it comes to following my own instruction for labor prep. I've been slacking on a lot of my exercises, due in part to the SPD, but am thankful for these little practice contractions to help me get back on track. 

That covers just about everything new with BP3-0! I haven't kept up with my bump photos like I did before (sorry baby #3) but I did realize that I took a 26 week bump pic from both pregnancies so I thought what better way to show my bump off this week than with a little comparison collage?

Oh how tan and youthful (and apparently more focused on framing the picture than on smiling) I was during that first pregnancy. This mama needs some SUNSHINE, stat! Any gender guesses out there? 

And for something a little different I thought I'd join a cute little What I Wore Sunday link up from A Blog For My Mom. I haven't done a link up in forever and probably won't have the discipline to do this every week (maybe!) but yesterday I was finally able to wear a particular sweater dress that has been taunting me from my closet for about 3 weeks now so I thought I'd share finally wearing it to mass. 

 

Me: Since the last few Sunday's have been oddly warm (I am not complaining about warm weather... BRING ON SPRING... ) I haven't been able to wear this beautiful sweater dress from Mossimo Supply Co. It was lent to me by my dear friend Layna (remember her daughter's beautiful birth story) and it's so soft and cozy and pretty. I'm obsessed. I paired it with some black leggings from Motherhood Maternity and suede Timberland boots. 

K: Grey sweater dress is from H&M kids, white tights and boots from Target, Frozen ribbon bow was a gift from our neighbor.

HG: Plaid button-up is from Children's Place but may have been a hand-me-down or consignment find. Red corduroy pants from H&M kids, shoes are Garanimals from WalMart. 

Sorry for no links - everything has shifted over to spring so nothing is listed on the websites anymore. At least I can give credit where it's due!  Feel free to join in next week with the WIWS link up - I'll try to do the same!

Until next time...

 

BP3-0

After sharing my last post updating everyone on the kiddos my bestie informed me that I left one out. Which is very true... and actually intentional so I'd have a topic for another post.... the bun in my oven! Yes, in case you missed the announcement, we are thrilled to be expecting baby #3 this June.  Here was the oh-so-cute and cuddly announcement photo we shared (taken by the always amazing Layna Rae Photography). 

Since I haven't been keeping up with weekly or monthly updates like I did with K and HG, I'll give you a quick run down of the pregnancy thus far.

I had a sneaking suspicion that I might be pregnant during the first weeks of October so I decided to take a test. I always get a kick out of how fast my lines show up on the pee sticks despite the fact that they all say you have to wait three minutes. I like to think it just means I'm super pregnant.  When I first saw that little pink line I was thrilled. I cried. I prayed. I thanked God for our newest gift. And then I realized I had the daunting task of keeping this HUGE secret from everyone I knew. Why? It just so happened that my in-laws were in town that weekend and I wanted to make sure I shared the news with Z first, and in a special and private way. Luckily our 6 year anniversary was that next weekend so I decided to make a plan to share the news then. But that meant I spent the entire visit with his parents and rest of the week sitting on my golden ticket news. I will admit it was kind of fun to have that little bit of time to myself but I was definitely itching to tell him. 

So, how'd you tell him?

Our anniversary rolled around after what seemed like the longest 4 days ever and we decided to make a day of it. We started with a trip to the shooting range, followed by lunch at home with the kids, then an afternoon movie, and an overpriced fancy-pants dinner at Texas de Brazil. I had been battling a sinus cold the entire week, and slyly dodging any of my family's attempts at getting me to take medication, so the romance of the day was slightly overshadowed by my sniffles and nasal speak. Still we had a great time and I would get more and more excited as the day went on, thinking about the moment I would surprise Z with the news. When we got to dinner I knew Z would want to order from the wine menu, and would probably offer me some. Luckily my head cold was a good excuse to decline a drink. Once his wine arrived he recommended we get up and take a spin around the salad bar. I quickly suggested that we make a toast first and raised my water glass. He said what I'm sure was something very sweet and touching, I wasn't hearing anything over the nervous pounding of my heart, and then I smiled and toasted, "Cheers to 6 wonderful years and our 3 beautiful babies". 

He smiled and raised his glass before my words really sunk in. The moment was classic. His smile dropped slightly as his eyes widened before his smile stretched back to the full width of his face. 

"Three? You're pregnant?"

I just nodded and grinned.

The rest is sappy old married couple stuff complete with hand holding, (since we couldn't smooch with my awesome cold accompanying us) tears from both of us, an explanation of when I took the test, how far along I was, etc. Definitely worth holding onto that secret for a few days. We shared the news with our family and friends gradually over the next couple of weeks and, of course, made the obligatory Facebook post right around 12 weeks. The support and love we've received has been overwhelming. Of course there have been a few people that have called me crazy/insane/nuts, or just looked at me like I told them I decided to pursue my life's passion of becoming a member of the Blue Man Group, but to those people I just smiled and reiterated my excitement. 

So how are you feeling?

I'm 19 weeks today and can say without any hesitation that this pregnancy has been the hardest yet. It's totally thrown me for a loop with all the intense morning sickness, all-day nausea, food aversion, headaches, and lack of energy. I dealt with morning sickness with both K and HG but it was quite manageable. This time is totally different and very unpredictable. I know God had a very specific timeline in mind for this pregnancy because I honestly think I would be totally worthless as a mother (and human, for that matter) if it weren't for the help of my mom and dad. Living with them while Z is in grad school has been a Godsend overall but especially in these last few months of yuck. Thankfully I think I'm past the worst of it and as long as I eat something every 2 hours I can fight off most of the nausea and headaches. Still waiting on that 2nd trimester energy boost to kick in. Where are you energy? I miss you!

Any crazy cravings? 

Nothing too nutty but I have had much more specific cravings this time around. I remember going through sweet and salty phases with K and then a meat phase (which usually ended up resulting in ordering Turkey burgers from our favorite burger joint) with HG but that was a fairly broad. This time I've wanted grilled sweet potatoes with garlic aioli, pickles (duh), ranch oyster crachers, vanilla ice cream, and starburst... but just the reds. Like I said, the food aversion has been more prominent than the cravings but when they do come they are quite specific. 

Boy or Girl?

We don't know, and we won't know! I never thought I'd have the patience to not found out the sex of a baby but I figured it would be fun to do at least once and there's no better time to do it than now. We're sitting pretty with one of each, so why not. The only question will be if we can both hold out. Luckily I only have one more ultrasound left to temp us. 

Does this one have a nickname?

For those of you who have been around for a while you'll remember that K's gestational nickname was Little Manatee (because she looked like a little sea cow in her first ultrasound) and HG's was Pumpkin (because of our pregnancy announcement). Both of them adapted new nicknames (The Bean and Mush respectively) after they were born but it was fun to have a little nickname for them while they were cooking. This one has been called a number of things so far. Because my first craving was sweet potatoes and I expressed my desire for them to my bestie, she has very affectionately called baby Sweet Potato. We've also referred to baby as BP3 (baby Pierce #3), and more recently my friend Leslie channeled  the force and said BP3 sounds a lot like C3P-0 and so adapted it to BP3-0. All adorable but nothing has really stuck with me. Maybe it's because I've just become used to saying "baby" when I talk about him/her with the kids, especially K. Who, by the way, hopes it's a girl. No, boy. No, girl again. No, definitely boy. 

Anything else?

Let's see. K fluctuates on her interest in my growing bump. She'll catch a glimpse of it and run up to me and hug or kiss my belly saying something sweet like, "I love you baby boy/girl". I melt a little each time. Then I'll tell her that soon she'll be able to feel baby move and she acts like I'm diseased and wants nothing to do with such nonsense. Four year olds, am I right?
HG doesn't seem to notice at all. He's become more aware of other babies when he sees them out at stores and will often point and exclaim "BABY" so we will sort of run with that acknowledgement, place his hand on my tummy, and repeat "baby". He's more interested in tractors and planes though, rightly so. 
I started feeling the first flutters around 16 weeks and am now feeling more prominent nudges and kicks. I love it! Kicks are always the first thing I miss once the baby is born. 
I really like the midwives at the hospital we'll be delivering at and have so many great things about all of them but I'm still a bit uneasy not having my angel Diane with me this time around. I've been teaching my childbirth classes at a midwife's office here in town and when my dad asked why I didn't just use her. I told him I would but she only specializes in home births and he just dropped his head and gave a very definitive, "no, no, no". Don't worry dad, I don't have plans to give birth in your house. But who knows what will happen (wink).
Like I said before, my parents have both been life savers during these hard/sick months but I've also loved being close to my mom for this pregnancy. I really missed her during the last two while living in Georgia so being with here every day has been wonderful. 

What about your weekly/monthly bump photos?

I absolutely loved taking weekly and monthly bump photos with K and HG. It was fun to watch my belly grow and compare bumps at the same time in each pregnancy. SO fun. I tried doing things a little differently this time and started taking some my point of view photos as well as a few classic profile pictures just for reference. Here is my bump evolution thus far! 

Until next time...

 

Pumpkin Update... Let The 3rd Trimester Begin!

Hello 3rd trimester, I didn't expect to see you so soon!

No seriously, this pregnancy is flying by WAY TOO FAST! I'm so excited to meet this little one but I feel like we just announced it to the world! It's been a very eventful month and baby boy is growing strong and riding low! He's giving me LOTS of crazy movements these days which leads me to believe he's going to be one energetic little boy! These aren't little pokes and jabs but back flips and full stretches. Fairly soon after my last update another exciting milestone started happening: braxton hicks contractions! Gotta love these practice runs for the BIG DAY. They seem to be stronger this time but I just credit that to my body being more used to the sensation since it's done it before. I've been using each one as a chance to practice my labor relaxation techniques: focusing my attention on relaxing every part of my body sans the contraction itself and really letting my body do what it's designed to do.

I'm definitely more tired these days and  have been dealing with dry eyes from time to time. I probably look like I'm mad but I'm just squinting through the dryness! I also blame the weather on that last part... nuts. One day it's 70 degrees and the next they are talking about another POLAR VORTEX hitting us. Anyone else ready for spring and summer weather?

I'm still sleeping about the same; up at least once to use the bathroom and lots of adjusting throughout the night but overall finding it easy to drift back to sleep. It has become more of a process actually getting OUT of the bed since lifting my big ol' belly requires a sideways push up. What little abs I have in there are no match for the weight of baby boy!

It's also getting harder to hold K for long lengths of time... which makes it SUPER convenient that she's been more whiney and clingy lately. It's as if she knows she needs to get her 1-on-1 time in now so she's always asking to be held, especially when I'm making dinner.  It's not that she's too heavy but just heavy enough {and tall enough} to be sitting uncomfortably on her brother.

As far as cravings go, I blame Valentine's Day for my obsession with conversation hearts. Not the yucky chalky ones that taste like Comet but the good "Sweethearts" kind that actually have flavors. Shame on Kroger for offering 3 boxes for $1. It's been my guilty pleasure! That and I could probably eat tacos for every meal. It's not a mexican food craving, just tacos. Good thing the hubs likes them too because they've graced our dinner table a number of times in the last month!

One thing I've actually been struggling with this month has been successfully managing stress. I lost my grandmother at the end of January and had a really hard time dealing with everything surrounding her death. Not just dealing with the grief, which was quite painful, but the stress of traveling for the funeral {sadly without Z}, family dynamics, patience in parenting, etc. I broke down in tears a few times like when I was looking up airfare and the very unfriendly United Airlines woman told me it would be $841 for a bereavement plane ticket from Atlanta to Norfolk with a 5 hour layover in DC and K would have to have her own ticket {also at $841} because she was 1 month past the 24 month limit. Yea. Never flying United. Delta offered $480 round trip bereavement tickets {and had excellent, sympathetic customer service} but I still would have had to get K her own seat. Needless to say we did not fly. Being that I tend to be a crier even when I'm not pregnant, I was surprised that with the exception of a few more ugly cries, mostly I was just mad. My stress morphed with my hormones and turned into pure frustration and anger. I try to be as relaxed, happy, and calm as possible when I'm pregnant but I just could't manage it. Thankfully when I was back home and into the normal routine with Z things got better. He really is my rock and I'm so thankful to have him. 

That's about all the pregnancy updates for month 7. I just can't believe I'm already in the home stretch! Every time someone asks me when I'm due their reaction is always "WOW THAT'S SO SOON!" As I look at my to do list I'm realizing that more and more. Lots to get done but I've also gotten a lot accomplished, INCLUDING making some great headway on the nursery transition {pictures to come} and pulling all of K's  baby things to a more easily accessible section of the our lame excuse for an attic {overexerted myself a bit with that one}. I'll keep all the updates coming!

Until next time...

Floorplans Galore!

I shared a photo back in December called Transformation Initiation with a photo of our guest bedroom as it's been for the last few years. We've added some new bedding and rearranged a bit but the color and basic layout has been the same from the time we moved in. Now that we're going to be using it as a guest room AND nursery for baby boy I've been happily checking things off my to do list {thank you nesting!!}. The painting was a lot of fun but the most difficult part has been taking on some major finagling to make all the furniture work. I love rearranging but being in my 7th month of pregnancy I didn't want to spend all day pushing and shoving larger pieces like the dresser and bed around the room by myself; something I would have loved doing in any other circumstance. So I sought out the help of home improvement gurus John and Sherry Petersik at Young House Love. They were very helpful and pointed me toward Floorplanner.com. Holy moly I love this site!  You can create multiple floorplans with a few clicks and see what set up you like best BEFORE all the pushing and shoving begins! BINGO!

I'm working with a crib, side table, queen bed, glider and rocking ottoman. There is currently a small dresser in the room that I plan on moving INTO the closet to use as a changing table/set of drawers. That means the sliding doors on the closet will be removed so having anything near that back corner won't be as cluttered as it might seem. As you'll see in the three designs, there's not a whole lot of space to work with and the bed takes up the majority of the room which makes things difficult. Pair that with the placement of the closet {sliding doors in the bottom right corner} and large back wall window and I struggled to make everything fit. But I really love the three designs I came up with and think any of them would work!

Here were my top three options:

I like the parallel layout of the crib and bed in this first option, and appreciate that the bed isn't facing the door, leaving a lot of walking room as you first enter. But the amount of space between the end of the bed and the glider isn't the most ideal. I'm foreseeing that the filing cabinet we currently have tucked back in the closet will remain there and act as a shelf of some sort {covered with a fun fabric of course} so I can use it for easy-to-reach items while in the glider but it's kind of behind everything which may prove difficult.

Another parallel set up which, again, I love. It will be very convenient if I want to grab baby boy during the night and lay back down to nurse or snuggle. Only this time there's significantly more room between the 'sitting corner' and other furniture. I also like that the extra space allows me to have the side table next to the glider which will definitely come in handy if I need to reach something while rocking the baby. Another perk to this layout is that the crib is on the outside wall instead of up against K's room. So if baby boy is pitching a fit it {hopefully} won't be as much of a disturbance to her.

Design 3 is probably my least favorite. The bed is basically in the same place it is now just closer to the front wall. There's plenty of space there to walk but I don't like that the largest piece of furniture in the room is pressed so closely to the wall. Plus, despite the fact that we are keeping it a partial guest room, having the bed in the same place it's always been makes it feel less like a 'new room' which is kind of the goal. I like that the glider is back in the corner, and has access to the side table again, but I'm not a fan of the crib being right up against the window. Even though we're not sure if we'll be in this house next winter, I don't like the idea of any kind of window-draft being that close to baby boy. Kind of a dud design, but worth sharing.

So what do you think?  Does one stand out above the others??

While I'm still deciding on the winning layout, here's a run down of what is being done in the room and what's already been completed!

1. paint the room - using a light grey {almost white} while leaving a single navy accent wall. Lightening the color helped open up the room and make it seem larger! - DONE

2. remove the large dresser - DONE {thanks mom and dad!}

3. remove sliding mirror doors from closet - DONE

3. empty out closet - possibly use the filing cabinet as additional shelving. It's a little too big to put up in our tiny attic and is more accessible for filing bills and what not. 50% DONE

4. move small dresser inside closet- opening up more space and creating a changing table in the closet.

5. bring K's glider/ottoman in from her room to give her more space for some of the larger Christmas toys she got and provide a rocker for baby boy. I LOVED rocking K when she was fussy or before bed. Definitely want to so that with baby brother as well.

Lots more to do but I'm eager to get it all done!

Pumpkin Update... 6 months

Another month, another bump photo, another update on pumpkin thus far!

Oh lordy I need a haircut... let's focus on that growing bump, eh?

Month 6 was filled with a lot of new developments! Looking back at my last few updates I realize that I have a tendency to ramble about life in general over baby-specific talk.  Maybe that's why it always takes me to long to get these updates shared.... maybe... so to make sure I get this posted in time and don't keep you reading for an hour I'll try to keep it pregnancy centered!

One of the newer developments in month six was the arrival of sciatic nerve and hip pain. The sciatic pain isn't all the time, not that painful - more annoying, and it's fairly easy to get rid of in the moment so I can't complain but so much. It's generally on my right side {my go-to side when I hold K} and if I can lay down on my left side I'm able to relieve the pressure and reduce or remove the pain. It's something new from my pregnancy with K so worth noting in the end I suppose. As for the hip pain, I'm not sure where it's coming from. Also not frequent and not unbearable, but obnoxious and more difficult to relieve.

I was really excited when I watched my tummy 'jump' for the first time! Kicks have been getting stronger and stronger and as we grow together I get to see his little dance parties happen first hand. LOVE LOVE LOVE it. It's really fun to set things like my phone on my belly and see how long it takes him to knock it off. "He's gonna be a little socca playa"

During our trip to Va for Christmas/New Years I did have a few bouts of morning sickness. The first day seemed really random after day 2 I realized that it was caused by me drinking orange juice first thing in the morning. I thought I felt a cold coming on so I was trying to boost my vitamin C but baby boy has been used to hot chocolate first thing and was clearly thrown off by the acid of the orange juice. Lesson learned. Hot chocolate before OJ always. Pumpkin knows what's really good for him ;)

I am slowly watching my belly button pop which I'm not too pumped about. I'm really shocked at how fast it's happening this time considering it NEVER popped with K. I guess it's how low he's riding that's putting more focus on that part of my tummy.

I also had my glucose test this week and I have to tell you people, I'm officially one of those weirdos who doesn't mind and, dare I say, likes, the glucola drink they have you chug. I liked the orange last time and I liked the red this time. I actually had a better overall experience with the blood drawing and jittery feeling. Most likely because I didn't have a 2 year old to help distract me from it all last time. While I was trying to tell myself not to feel lightheaded when they took my blood last time, I was focused on K not seeing them draw it this time. End result... no lightheadedness! I did accompany K during her nap today when the sugar crash hit me but I was expecting that and, quite frankly, benefited from catching a few extra z's.

All in all I'm feeling pretty great at this point in the pregnancy. My midwife says I'm measuring a little small {I don't see how that's possible} but I measured small with K the entire time and she credits it to how low he is. I have a ton of energy and am nesting big time! I got the nursery painted with the help of my dear friend Andrea... she helped me paint K's room too... and was on such a kick that I also painted our master bathroom. Now I want to paint ALL THE ROOMS. Here's to three more happy and healthy months!

Until next time...