Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Bowtastic is not a word.

I really hope my baby girl doesn't mind wearing big crazy bows like these:

Because last night I made a bow that looks pretty much identical to this:

And this is next:

Here's hoping I have a little girly girl on my hands! Also - I'm pretty sure she'll need a bow to be recognized as a girl for at least the first 2 years of her life. I was practically bald or just had a little blond peach fuzz most of my babyhood, and since my parents dressed me like a boy for the most part (you still got a girly girl, Mom and Dad!) I was sometimes confused for a boy. Maybe if the baby has a bow for every day of the week, people will have no doubt she's a girl!

But really I'm just planning on living vicariously through the baby with these crazy bows. I would totally wear them if I could get away with it!

Monday, September 27, 2010

20 weeks: Officially halfway through my pregnancy!

Well, here we are at week 20! I'm really happy to be at the halfway point. Everything is going just fine and we are getting closer to being ready (in lots of ways) to welcome a new little person into our family. I've been feeling relatively good lately although I am starting to get a bit more uncomfortable doing everyday things and have noticed I don't move as quickly or as gracefully as I used to. This is to be expected and will only get worse the bigger I get! Right now though, I feel really lucky for how easy the first half of my pregnancy has been. No scary complications, no puking, and I've only had to take a few sick days at work. I hope I can keep that up!

Baby is probably 11 ounces or so now and is about the length of a banana. She is going to start growing like crazy now. She's not even a pound yet, and in 20 weeks or so will probably be around 8 lbs! That's a lot of growth in a pretty short time. I'm excited to see how these next few months progress. This is the first time I can honestly say I'm excited for winter! And not just because of Christmas. In fact, this year we've decided to go light on the holiday decorations. I'm going to be too big and there will be too much going on for me to go all out like I normally do. I think I will do the mantel and a small tree and other little things, but no big tree this year. I'm excited to pick out new stockings for the mantel this year - I've never really liked the ones I had, so I'm thrilled to pick out three new ones! The holidays will be here before we know it.

Update for Week 20:

How Far Along: Half way there!
Total Weight Gain: Haven't weighed myself this week. Around 10 or so I'm guessing.
Maternity Clothes: I need another pair of jeans, a couple more pairs of dressier pants and more shirts for work! Must do some shopping soon.
Sleep: Sleeping a bit more lately. I was a bit sick this last week - that might be why. I took an hour nap each day this weekend.
Best Moment(s) this week: Spending time with Neil this weekend, and finally going to the gym again!
Gender: A girl. And she has a name! We're not revealing it just yet, but initials are LCM.
Movement: Yep. She's definitely moving in there. She seems to do more punching than kicking from where I think she is laying in my belly. She is also really active late at night, like 11pm to 1am. Makes it tough to sleep!
Baby's heart rate this week: High 140s.
Food Craving: I wish it was veggies.
Symptoms: More tired than usual and lots of mild pain in my tummy. Lots of growing and stretching happening in there.
What I miss: Having more energy. Being able to squat, roll over and reach for things with ease. I feel like an old woman and still have a looong way to go.
What I am looking forward to: A visit from our good friends Mike and Angela and their little girl Anna. We visited them when Anna was 4 months old (we've seen them since then too) - but that was when I was really "bitten by the baby bug"! Can't wait to see Anna again and get advice from Mike and Angela about raising a daughter!

Stay tuned for the name announcement here in a week or two or whenever I feel like announcing it. I can't wait to order some cute monogrammed stuff!

Friday, September 24, 2010

Baby Names Up for Grabs

I've got a collection of beautiful baby girl names that have been tossed out/rejected/vetoed by my lovely husband. Free to a good home!

Names we will not be using...


I'm happy to report we are getting closer to agreeing on a name, it's just none of those above!

This naming thing is harder than I thought. It would be super easy if I didn't have to get a picky husband to agree with me! He's worth it though.

Hopefully by February our little girl will have a name!

Monday, September 20, 2010

19 Weeks and counting...

I had a wonderful weekend of birthday celebrations, laughter, good (fattening) food and great friends. All of it made sweeter by knowing my baby is perfectly healthy and growing just fine! This weekend I turned 27 and I found out I'm going to have a daughter! I have an amazing husband who is so excited to meet our baby girl and is so supportive of me! It just warms my heart to see him carrying around little pink outfits in the store and talking about our little girl. He's going to be such an amazing dad. It's all very real now and we are just so thrilled. I couldn't be happier or feel luckier than I do right now.

At the ultrasound I found out the baby is about 9 ounces and everything looks perfect. I'm feeling pretty good right now too! I really can't complain at all! I'm just about halfway there and I just need to get things ready for our little girl, take care of myself and spend quality time with Neil before we add the baby into the mix this winter.

Here are my weekly updates for week 19:

How Far Along: 19 weeks today!
Total Weight Gain: About 8 lbs (probably 10 now after this weekend's festivities!)
Maternity Clothes: Got em, wearing em, love em.
Sleep: Mostly sleeping through the night. I might get up once or twice to pee or because my tummy is stretching!
Best Moment(s) this week: Seeing my baby's face at our ultrasound!
Gender: A sweet baby girl.
Movement: A couple kicks and punches a day.
Baby's heart rate this week: 140s.
Food Craving: Caramel apples.
Symptoms: Heartburn and round ligament pain and stretching, mostly at night.
What I miss: Let's be honest: Beer. I just went to Oktoberfest and it was so not fair! I had a sip of Sam Adams and it was delicious! Maybe next year!
What I am looking forward to: A calmer workweek and a relaxed/relaxing weekend ahead. Working on the nursery. My pink crib bedding coming in the mail (thought I'd order to see if I like it) and maybe some sushi in my future?

Here's to a wonderful week for everyone! Can you believe it's almost October?!

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Then I saw her face...

My ultrasound last Friday was one of the most amazing experiences of my life. It's hard to describe how incredible those 20 minutes really were! It all happened so fast and I just remember looking back and forth from the baby on the monitor to my husband's face. It was so awesome and sweet to see his reaction at the same time.

Baby's profile - chin is tucked into chest.

Immediately the ultrasound tech was able to pull up the moving images of our little baby. After we were assured that the heart, brain and other important anatomy was all intact and growing, the tech showed us a view between our little one's legs. I think Neil and I were both trying to find the penis! Well, there was not one there! The tech pointed out three white lines which indicated to her that our baby was without a doubt a little girl. A little GIRL!

We were both shocked. We had just picked out a boy's name days before and I'd actually convinced myself it was a 100% boy. We were so wrong! I honestly couldn't be more happy. It was an amazing, happy surprise. She even crossed her legs at the ankle like a little lady.

After looking some more at our very active little girl (thanks Chick-fil-A sweet tea), the ultrasound tech flipped the machine over to 3D. And there was her adorable face! I cannot describe the emotions I had at that moment. There is really a person inside me! A little baby girl with a sweet little face. She is real and we will meet her soon.

I'm overjoyed at the thought of having a healthy baby thriving in there. We were told she is growing perfectly and right according to schedule. My due date is still February 14. I'm not having any issues at all right now and I'm really enjoying being pregnant. I feel the occasional kick and movement from the baby and I can't wait to start feeling her every day.

We've already bought some pink girly things for her room (rug, curtains and changing pad cover) and she has some truly girl outfits now. Even though I was expecting dinosaurs and monkeys I'm fully loving flowers and butterflies! Girls clothes are very sweet and I can't for the bows and cute little girl shoes!

We are incredibly thankful for a healthy baby and so excited to welcome this little girl into our family. I can't wait to meet her and see her little face in person!


Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Woah baby... the 18 week belly

I hope you can see my belly through the dirty mirror!

Yeah, so there is no hiding it now!

Monday, September 13, 2010

18 Weeks and so excited!

I have so many reasons to be excited for this week. First and foremost, I finally get to see my sweet little baby this week via ultrasound. I've been waiting for this for months and it might be the only time I see him/her until "labor" day. I'm so thrilled to find out the sex but to also just make sure everything is growing okay in there. My appointment is on Friday at 1:30.

After the big ultrasound, Neil is taking me out for a birthday date to celebrate my 27th birthday (it's on Sunday)! It's so crazy that he and I met around my 16th birthday. We were just children and now here we are preparing to have a child ourselves! It's nuts!

I'm hoping for sushi for my birthday with something yummy for dessert! We will continue the birthday celebration with our friends Elizabeth and Sy (who's turning 28 on Saturday). We are doing our annual birthday evening at Oktoberfest in downtown Cincinnati. This year will be much different than years past - less beer (well, no beer) and more food! I'm really excited to dance to the Klaberheads and just have fun and celebrate!

So yeah - I'm 18 weeks today! Almost halfway there. It's going by so fast. I'm just so lucky to be having a relatively easy pregnancy so far and to have so many great people rooting for us and for the baby! We borrowed some awesome baby things from our friends Joe and Melissa. Their baby Josiah is 19 months and they are waiting a while for the next baby, so they had some things to get out of their basement for the time being. They gave us a great bassinet, a baby bathtub, a jumperoo and an awesome swing that plugs in! Everything is wonderful! I'm so excited to have the baby here to try it all out. Thanks guys!

Here are my weekly updates for week 18:

How Far Along: 18 weeks today!
Total Weight Gain: About 7 lbs
Maternity Clothes: Today, all maternity. But I can still wear a lot of pre-pregnancy tops. Maternity pants are a must!
Sleep: Still sleeping well!
Best Moment(s) this week: Being productive this weekend with Neil even though it was hard work. We cleaned and organized a lot! We got to relax some too though. It was a great weekend.
Gender: Can't believe we find out in 4 days! I'm still thinking boy!
Movement: Occasionally I feel some kicking and moving and I can hear thumps on my fetal doppler.
Baby's heart rate this week: Right around 145-150.
Food Craving: Dairy. Cheese, yogurt, milk!!
Symptoms: Feeling good. I get tired easier and walking around a lot wears me out really fast! I've had a few days at work where I'm on my feet all day, and that is getting hard!
What I miss: Nothing right now!
What I am looking forward to: My birthday and the gender reveal of this little baby! Cannot wait for that! I'll probably try to wait to reveal on the blog and facebook until I've told family and friends over the weekend.

Here's to a great week!

Friday, September 10, 2010

Crib Bedding: To Sew or not to Sew?

I'm trying to decide whether or not to sew the crib bedding or just buy it. It seems kind of silly to spend a whole bunch of time or money on bedding because A) baby will sleep in a bassinet/co-sleeper/pack n play in our room for the first few months and B)there is a lot of talk about how crib bumpers aren't safe and I don't want to waste time/money with something that is purely decorative!

I'm trying to search around to see if there is any bedding available in stores or online that I like. I'm not into the cutesy themes (although I love zoo animals, especially monkeys!) and I'm looking for something pretty streamlined and modern. So, polka dots, stripes and/or another geometric type pattern in a bold color. Neil (and most everyone else I asked) was not keen on pale colors for the nursery, so we will likely go pretty saturated for color. Hot pink for a girl and dark browns for a boy with green or orange accents.

I really love this pink bedding from Target. I love the mix of polka dots and stripes. The only thing I really know for sure about bedding is that I want a striped crib skirt! I just wonder if the pink will be bright enough in real life. I really want to avoid pastels.

I've had a harder time finding boy bedding that I like, which probably means I'll have to sew a lot of it. I'd like something really simple - brown and white polka dots with stripes. This one is also from Target, I could use parts of it and find or make a bed skirt to coordinate.

This is a really expensive option of kind of what I'm looking for:

Obviously, it'll will be much easier after next Friday when we know whether to concentrate on pink or brown. I did find one really cute unisex/neutral option at Target. I love that bright shade of green and animal pattern. I know Neil is not a big fan of green, so he won't like it, but I think it would be a cute option.

So, I basically need to decide if I'm going to buy or sew. Luckily, my sewing machine is all ready to go and I have a very nice mother who has volunteered to help me!

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

17 weeks?! Can that be right?

I can't believe I'm already 17 weeks along. It's all starting to go very fast! I'm feeling great. For me, the 2nd trimester's reputation for being the easy one has been true. Other than a couple of migraines, I've felt really good. The baby is definitely starting to grow a lot more and I'm pretty sure I've felt the occasional kick or two. I can definitely hear it on my doppler when he/she moves and kicks. It's so weird and cool. I love the baby already, and I seriously cannot wait to find out next week (!!) if it's a boy or a girl. Neil and I are pretty convinced its a boy. I've started to have dreams about the baby and its always a boy. We could definitely be surprised and have a girl on our hands, but I would be shocked. My brother and mom think its a girl, so we'll just have to wait and see in 9 days!

The baby is the size of a sweet potato this week. I've seen some pretty big sweet potatoes, so I'm guessing its one of the medium sized ones. The baby weighs about 5 oz. In about a month the baby will be over a pound! Just keep growing little one!

I got so much fun stuff for the baby this weekend! My mother-in-law is spoiling the baby already and bought him/her some neutral outfits and onesies from Carter's. We also got some bibs and other little things. Thanks Grandma Mary! This is definately the cutest thing we bought - can't wait to see the baby in it!

Elizabeth also got me lots of fun stuff at a yard sale! Super cute onesies, sleepers, and 3 pairs of bib overalls in different sizes! I'm so excited about those. Thanks Auntie Elizabeth! The baby already has some really cute clothes and toys - and the majority are from yard sales or were bought with coupons and big store sales. I put baby's clothes in drawers last night and organized them by size. I can't wait til next Friday when I can go buy a super girly or super boyish outfit after my ultrasound!

Neil and I discussed names a little bit last night. I think we have decided to try to pick a name before the birth, but maybe not share it with the world until the baby gets here. That way we will avoid any unwanted comments about the name prior to the birth. We hope once baby is here that most people will be too excited about a new member of the family to criticize the name choice too much. Luckily, our family members have been pretty diplomatic and supportive of most of my name ideas - so I think they'll be okay with whatever we choose.

Oh, we ordered the crib and changing table for the nursery. Thanks Mom and Dad! We went with the slightly more expensive crib that Neil really liked. So, I guess since he got his choice in cribs, I get to pick the baby's name? Ha! Just kidding! Here it is. It's the Graco Charleston crib and matching changer. I love it!

Here are my weekly updates, complete with growing belly photo!

How Far Along: 17 weeks and 2 days
Total Weight Gain: About 6 lbs
Maternity Clothes: Almost all maternity pants, a mix of maternity and pre-pregnancy tops
Sleep: I sure do love sleeping. Trying to get as much in as I can!
Best Moment(s) this week: Eating home-made ice cream. Schooling my family in cornhole. Shopping with my mother-in-law. Relaxing at my parents' house. Catching up with my friend Jenny (who's 8 months pregnant)!
Gender: I'm leaning 75% boy. I'm not necessarily hoping for a boy, but that's just my gut feeling. We will see very soon!
Movement: I think I've felt a little here and there. I can hear thumps on my doppler, I'm pretty sure baby is kicking away in there.
Baby's heart rate this week: A little higher lately: 150s and 160s mostly.
Food Craving: Mac and cheese and chocolate milk! (Same as last week)
Symptoms: Not many symptoms right now. Feeling great!
What I miss: Not much. I'm enjoying pregnancy!
What I am looking forward to: My first big Moms of Multiples sale at a nearby high school this Saturday. Spending a rare event-free weekend with Neil. Maybe working on the nursery a bit!

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Things that Make this Pregnant Woman Cry*

1. Heartfelt dedications on late night radio (Darn you Delilah!)

2. Escape (The Pina Colada Song)

3. Lots of commercials, specifically the iPhone 4 ones

4. Preemie baby clothes

5. The Today Show! Please don't tell me about a summer camp for kids who have lost their parents at 7:30 in the morning. I was crying so bad we had to turn the channel, and my breakfast got cold. Too sad!

6. Most NPR stories. It's really radio that's my biggest problem! Crying and driving are not a good combo.

7. This video:

* and by cry, I don't mean shed one or two tears - its pretty typical for me to tear up for a lot of things. This is full-on crazy bawling crying that starts in an instant with no warning! Oh the hormones!

Friday, September 3, 2010

My Pants Don't Fit

Yesterday I found something worse than ironing.

Spending 10 minutes ironing a pair of pants only to realize they don't even fit.

I desperately need to get some more maternity pants. Right now, I only have 2 pairs of maternity jeans (only 1 pair that are work-worthy), and a few pairs of pants that I can still rig up with my Bella Band or with a rubber band. It's really depressing to see your wardrobe dwindle in front of your eyes. Just a couple days ago I packed a few more pants and tops into the "See you next year" bin. So sad!

I'm also realizing that most of my tops are not long enough. They cover my belly and everything, but not the maternity panel or whatever contraption I'm using to keep my pants from falling off. Ughh!

Usually my favorite thing about fall is shopping for new clothes. I can literally spend hours just planning out what I need to shop for, not to mention the actual shopping! I'm just not thrilled about buying a temporary maternity wardrobe. Everything is so expensive! I hate buying anything full price. Most of my pre-pregnancy clothes are great deals from TJ Maxx or cheapies from Target, Old Navy or even Walmart. It just hurts to pay $40 for a pair of pants! What can I say, I'm a bargain hunter. I guess I just need to bite the bullet so I have something to wear to work. Here are the main things I'm needing for Fall:


Thursday, September 2, 2010

Letter to Baby: Written at 5 weeks pregnant

June 15, 5 weeks

Dear Little One,

I just found out about you a week ago, and let me tell you it still hasn't really sunken in. Even though I'm shocked and scared and anxious, I'm also really really happy. We've told a few people about you and they are very excited too. I'm just really scared something might go wrong. I know its a possibility, but chances are, everything will be okay.

Well, little one, you've been giving me some symptoms, but nothing too bad. The first few days, before I knew about you, I was really hot all the time! Do you know you've already ran a 5K with mommy? You don't even have legs yet but we did it in 35 mins or so! I'll take most of the credit. I have only ran about 1 minute since I found out about you. I've been really tired! I have swam and riden the bike at the gym and gone on walks. I'm trying to give you a healthy environment in there and keep myself healthy. I want to try to eat healthier than I have been, but I've been too exhausted to cook or even shop or even think about it! I hope to get better at that.

I go to the doctor next week to find out how you are doing. I'm not sure exactly what they are going to do or tell me - but I hope it puts some of my worries at ease. It's funny that a week ago I didn't know you existed but now I'm so worried about losing you. I'm trying to get better about thinking positive and not dwelling on the bad stuff!

So instead of focusing on negative things, I thought I'd share some of my hopes. I hope you grow big and strong and come out nice and easy in February! You are due on Valentine's Day, which has always been my favorite holiday. You're my little valentine! I can't wait until I know if you are a boy or a girl. I think you are going to be a boy, but as I'm typing now I'm thinking of you as a little girl. I'll be happy either way! I just want you to be healthy and happy!

One thing I've started to do is to think ahead a year from now about what we might be doing. Today is June 15, and if you come on your due date (which is unlikely) you will be 4 months old this time next year. That will be so fun! I might be going back to work then, which will be really hard, but we can do so much fun stuff! You'll be more active and interactive and it will be fun to be with you! We can go to lots of fun places! We will go to the zoo, the aquarium, to friend's houses, to see your grandparents, lots of places! I can't wait. I don't want to rush things though. I know things will start going really fast and I do want to enjoy everything about this experience!

Okay little one, I've got to go. I am working late tonight, until 9 and I've been up since 6:30am. I am really tired! I'm getting ready to go take a walk with Karyn at work. It's so hard being around friends and not telling them about you! I will soon enough.

Bye bye now.
Love, Your Mama

June 8th, 2010– “The day we found out” or “The day of the big test”

Who knew that the biggest test I would I ever take would occur 5 years after college?

I suspected something was going on with me about 4 days or so before I got that positive result. I was burning up hot all the time, which is odd for me, I'm usually cold. I was waking up very early in the morning, before 7, which is even more unlike me. I actually ran a 5K the Saturday before “the test” but I didn't feel right the whole race. I did okay, but I was slow and just didn't feel well and had to walk a bit. Of course at the time I didn't know these were all early pregnancy symptoms!

Neil got home from MBA class around 10pm on June 8. I was still burning up and waking up early and feeling weird and since we knew there was a chance we got pregnant, he pretty much insisted I take a test and get it over with. He went to Walmart and got a 3-pack.

I remember there was NBA basketball on of some sort that night. It might have been the Championship game (Neil will know for sure). I remember hearing it in the background when I was waiting for the results and when I saw that bright pink line quickly appear on the stick. I truly was shocked when I saw that it was positive. I was literally in shock. I walked to Neil (who was in the living room watching the game, of course) and I told him. I'm pretty sure I was crying. I think the first things he said were, “It will be okay,” and “Let's call Sy and Elizabeth” (our best friends). I told him to wait and let it sink in for a little bit before we call anyone! We did end up calling them like 15 minutes later. They said we sounded shocked and scared. Probably because we were!

So June 8th was the night of the test. It honestly took a few days for it to really sink in. I think it took Neil a few months, and probably didn't really hit him until we heard the heartbeat. So, that's the story of “the test”. And now here were are at almost 17 weeks!

*A weird aside* We actually met a guy named June 8th. In a mall. He was an Asian man, I don't think his name was really June 8th. Maybe thats just how it was pronounced. I don't really remember. He was selling personalized rice jewelry. Yeah. He could write things on a grain of rice – like your name or whatever and put it in a little container and make it into jewelry. Weird! So yeah, June 8th, I'll always remember you as the weird rice man in the mall and the day my life changed.

I finished up the 3 pack of tests within the next week or so, just to make sure! I wrote some letters to the baby in the weeks right after I found out. I'll put them in in a separate post, because this one is getting a little long.