Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Lawd Help Me

I walked into my office this morning and it was humid...

in my office...

at 7:30 a.m.

Turns out the A/C is broken. Must have been for a few days.

Luckily my best buddy on campus - who is a counterpart in another college - is having pity on my poor soul and is picking me up and taking me to partake in an iced coffee ASAP.

Hopefully this is not an omen for the rest of the work week.

So anyway - I had a fab weekend. And I'll be happy to update y'all on it once I'm not boiling inside my office. So it might have to wait until tomorrow.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Baby J Update

So sorry for the lack of posts this week. Blogger has been down - and I thought to try logging in from Internet Explorer instead of Firefox and it magically let me in. Hope they fix it soon!


Welllll, we had our follow-up appointment with a perinatal doctor this morning - which included a nice long ultrasound. We got a good 30 minutes to watch our little boy, and it was awesome. He has been moving nonstop lately, and he definitely was jabbing back at the ultrasound tech whenever she pressed down. She even had to told him, "I know you're in there!!!" He just wanted to make himself known.


We got another full anatomy scan, and all his organs are still growing perfectly. He's also still a "he" - because, ya know, I just had to triple check. He looks so much bigger now and I could definitely see his sweet little face much better than last time. He was looking right at the camera just for us!


J is measuring right on point - 26 weeks 6 days (right where I am.) He's a little thing - weighs exactly 2lbs right now and in the 18% percentile... but everything looks great and he's still super active... and if the kicks are any indication, he's nice and strong. The doctor said he's pretty sure I'm going to have a little baby, so I shouldn't have much to worry about with a "big baby" associated with gestational diabetes. But they'll do another check between 32-36 weeks to make sure he's still growing appropriately.


And on the diabetes front, my blood sugar readings were completely normal throughout the week. I get to decrease my finger pricks from 4x a day to 2x... much more manageable. The nutritionist also told me to feel free to be less strict with my diet, since everything looks so good. I was down 0.6lbs since last week, so now I'm only up 7.4lbs so far. The doctor doesn't seem too concerned, but told me they do want me gaining at least 1lb a week from here on out.


My mom is most concerned and is threating to show up on my doorstep with cupcakes if this weight gain doesn't come. But, if you could see my belly, it's definitely not the issue. My stomach has definitely grown - I just think my weight redistributed from other places... and I can't complain about that. ;)


But I'm off work tomorrow for an extra long Memorial Day weekend. We're heading to Pinehurst in the morning for a few days of sun, food, spa appointments and golfing. I can't wait to just relax for a few days!


I promise to be back next week with a good 27 week bump picture!


Hope you all have a blessed weekend.

Monday, May 23, 2011

Weekending

Happy Monday everyone.

I'm having a hard time believing that May is almost over.

That gives me June and July... and then sometime during August, a little boy will make his big debut! Crazy.

So, all in all, it was a pretty busy weekend. I guess for the gestational diabetes update, things have been going fine. I've been great about testing my blood sugar levels at all the right times. All my readings (up until today) have been completely normal... if not low. Today, my fasting level and my post-breakfast level are just a little over... 3 or 4 points... which is odd, because - at least for breakfast - I ate the exact same thing I've been eating all week that has given me super-low levels. Go figure. Looking forward to the doctor's appointment on Thursday to hear what they say.

Other than that - we're just busy, busy! After some deliberation, Chad decided that he wanted to pull all the fescue grass out of our yard and hire someone to re-sod with zoysia (a warm-weather grass.) I hemmed and hawed over the whole thing because I realllly didn't want a warm-weather grass (that goes dormant once it gets cold), but our yard is just too big and gets way too much sun to justify trying to keep fescue alive during the hot summers. Our irrigation bill last summer was out.of.control. and we still ended up with burnt grass.

I must say, the zoysia does look really good and once it starts greening up in the next couple of weeks (this 90+ degree heat we'll have all week actually will help it), I know we'll enjoy it. Next weekend, once we return from Pinehurst, we're going to tackle some of the new flower beds we put in. It's a big undertaking but I know the end result will be worth it.

We're also still making moves on the nursery front. We picked up our dresser and end-table this weekend, and in the next few weekends (after the yardwork gets done), Chad will start painting them. I think they're going to look awesome when he's done. That room is really coming together.

Paint: check
Crib and mattress: check
Crib bedding: check
Glider and ottoman: check
Dresser: check
End table: check
End table lamp: check
Art work: check
Window treatments: check

We still need to buy a few shelves, and perhaps a corner bookshelf (though this can wait), and the room will be complete!

Friday, May 20, 2011

Gestational Diabetes update

So I had my first appointment yesterday with the kind folks at Duke University's Perinatal Specialists. First, can I give a cheers for being able to live in an area with some many great medical institutes surrounding us? We truly can find some of the best care in the nation within minutes of our door... and that is something to be thankful for.

I met with the perinatal doctor, a nurse and a nurse/diabetic counselor yesterday. All three were really wonderful. They made me feel so much better reassuring me that this just sometimes happens with women - it's nothing that I did and nothing I should beat myself up for. They reiterated that they knew I was a healthy person... so I didn't have anything to be worried about (for me or the baby long-term) assuming I keep up a healthy lifestyle. It was actually interesting to meet with the counselor because she gave me such great information that I'll likely keep post-pregnancy.

Just looking at the meal plans, I realized that the protein in my diet has been severely, severely lacking. I am a veggie + fruit + carb person. And I likely enjoy the carbs (pastas, breads, potatoes, etc.) because they fill me up since I'm not getting the protein I need.

Now, that's not to say "no carbs" - the nurse was quick to tell me to be careful to make sure I am eating all the portions of carbs they laid out for me because I need the energy and the baby will need the energy that comes from them. Besides, if the baby isn't gaining enough weight, they will have to modify it. But, if I can get used to eating more protein (and finding extra sources of protein that I wouldn't normally think of), I can likely make longer-term changes on my diet.

So that part = good.

As for the blood sugar testing... ehhhh, not such a fan. Certainely it really doesn't hurt - it's a quick pinch, collect the blood drop, deposit on my testing strip and get my blood sugar count. More than anything, it's an inconvenience. For the time being, I have to test first thing when I wake up, and then once after every major meal (breakfast, lunch and dinner.) I have to do this a full week, and assuming my readings look good next week - indicating that the diet is working for me - I'll get to cut back how often I test. For most people, the diet does the trick... but there is still a chance I could follow the diet perfectly and STILL end up on medicine. But, I'm staying positive here and hoping that won't be an issue for me. My first two readings this morning were completely normal - hoorah!

And a big "Thank You" to my sweet Chaddy who, again, woke up at a little past 6 a.m. with me - despite it being his day off - so he could support me when I did my first blood-draw solo and could help me make my breakfast. He really is the best.

So now for the good part about, once again, being a "high-risk pregnancy":
1) Meetings with the perinatal doctors... who specialize in high-risk pregnancies and are truly the best of the best. Baby J is really getting the best care possible.
2) I get at least TWO extra ultrasounds on my little peanut (or, at 26 weeks, a 2-pound eggplant.) This is to make sure the baby isn't growing too big (a side effect of gestational diabetes) or too small (a side effect of the diet you're put on.) Next Thursday is our next ultrasound, and we'll get another one at 32 weeks. We had thought after the gender ultrasound, that would be it. So Chad and I are really excited to be able to see the baby again a few more times before he's born.

So, all in all, I'm doing fine. I had various screenings done during this pregnancy, and if ANY one was going to be come back negative or abnormal, this is the one you want... because while it's an inconvenience for you, it doesn't really have an impact on the baby (assuming you're treating it.)

There you go, my friends! All you ever wanted to know and more. :)

Happy Friday and have a great weekend.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Thursday Tune

...or tunes, I supposed.

I had forgotten how much I l.o.v.e.d. this performance by Mumford & Sons, Avett Brothers and Bob Dylan at this year's Grammys. Especially M&S and ABs.... two of my favorites singing some of my favorite songs. And I just loved how the much younger guys in M&S and ABs got to play and sing alongside one of their idols. Just so cool.

And of course, one of my favorite lines from Avett Brothers:
"If you're loved by someone you're never rejected. Decide who to be and go be it."


211213212512 by yardie4lifever2

Chad and I love blasting music while we cook, clean and just hang out around the house. I can't wait for us to dance around the house with our little baby to these songs.

99 days...

Yes, my friends. The countdown is in the double digits...

9 9 D A Y S
until baby j

Three months to go.

Can't fool Chad

Since we're having some landscaping work done, Chad took off work today to oversee the progress. Still, I convinced him that it would be reallyyyyy nice if he still woke up with me at 6:30 a.m. this morning to keep me company. I made us both breakfast - the half english muffin, slice of cheese, egg and turkey sausage.

Well.... let's just say Chad wasn't such a fan of the sausage.

Chad (chewing): "Ugh, what's this?!"
Me: "Turkey sausage... it has a lot less fast."
Chad: "I can tell."
Me: "I don't mind it. It's just chewier."
Chad: "No, I'll tell you what it is - it's an impostor. It's a turkey wearing a pig costume. And I don't buy it."

I'm telling ya, don't mess with Chad's pork products. He feels strongly about his swine.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Letters to J

Hey little one,

After several days of lots of movement, you've been pretty quiet all morning. I was so busy that I really didn't pay much attention.

But you just gave me a few swift kicks, and I actually teared up because I forgot how much I miss when I don't feel you moving around.

So I gave you (via my stomach) a quick pat, rubbed you in circles a few times and told you, "Hey there bud. I miss you and love you today."

Man I'm so ready to meet you!

Love,
mama

Gestational Diabetes - How I'm dealing

So I'm not going to lie... I was really upset at the news yesterday. I think 1) I was just shocked that I failed. I was so convinced my one-hour test was a fluke. And 2) I was upset that the staff person who called me from my OB's office gave me essentially NO info... pretty much said I failed and expect a call to schedule my follow-up with Duke to get more info.

I had no clue how much I failed by.
I had no clue about gestational diabetes other than what I learned from Dr. Google
And I am pregnant and hormonal and we don't take bad news very well.

So I was super thankful that I had a good friend Amy to call... who was right by my side during my infertility issues and gave me SO much support and advice. She had warned me ahead of time to just plan on calling her if I failed, because she had gestational diabetes with her first little girl, but didn't have it with her second. Talking to her made me feel so much better. She gave me an idea of what I could expect --- and just a reminder that it was nothing I did wrong, my baby was going to be absolutely fine if I manage it correctly, and that pregnancy hormones can just make your body do all sorts of crazy things.

Then, I got a call from a nurse at my doctor's office this morning who gave me pretty good news. I barely failed. The only blood draw I did bad on was my one-hour (but REALLY.... whose blood glucose levels could possibly be normal after drinking that sick stuff)... my fasting draw was barely over, and my 2- and 3-hr draws were completely within normal ranges. So at least I know that it's not my body cannot handle insulin completely, it just might take it a little while.

Well, I figured I could wait until my meeting tomorrow with my nutritionist to discuss my new diet, or I could google what everyone else had to go through. From what I'm getting, it's not SO terrible (other than an annoyance to have to do the finger pricks every few hours to draw blood and counting your carbs)... but it does mean "bye-bye to carbs" for me for the next 3 months.

I can deal with no cupcakes, sugar, ice cream, cake, pie, chocolate, etc... (but still, really? no sweets for a pregnant person. sads.), but taking away my bread, potatoes and pasta is going to be the hard part. I know I can sub smaller portions of whole wheat, but anyone who thinks whole wheat pasta is as good as regular is off their rocker. The other hard part will be making sure I'm getting good protein (which is hard because I'm not a big meat-eater.)

But alas, I'll make it happen. I've heard the key is to combine my proteins with carbs to counteract them a little.

I'm going to learn MUCH more at my doctor's appointment tomorrow about my new gestational diabetes diet, but from what most people say I should be eating 3 meals and 3 snacks a day. I need to keep my snacks under 15g of carbs and breakfast/lunch at 30g carbs and dinner at 45g carbs.

So here's my trial gestational diabetes diet for today, which I'm affectionately calling my "Baby J Hates Me Meal Plan":

Wed. May 18
Breakfast: 7 a.m.
Half a whole wheat English muffin with one scrambled egg and a slice of cheese, 2 pieces of turkey sausage

Breakfast snack: 9:30 a.m.
Yogurt and almonds

Lunch: 12 p.m.
Homemade egg salad (I made a killer batch last night) on half a whole wheat pita
Baby carrot sticks

Afternoon snack: 3 p.m.
String cheese
7 wheat crackers

Dinner: 6 p.m.
Roasted chicken
Salad
Mini baked red potato

Evening snack: 8 p.m.
Pudding cup

So it's really not bad. The big thing is that I need to be consistent in the times of day I'm eating, that I don't skip meals/snacks, and that I spread those carbs out throughout the day. I'll be great at this during the weekdays, but it will be rough on weekends. I'm hearing the night snack is one of the most important because your bloodsugar levels are most likely to get out of whack over night. That's also why a good breakfast of protein helps too. So, no more Crispix and milk for my breakfast anymore - wahhhhhhhhhhh.

So that's the latest. I'll let you know what more I found out tomorrow.

Baby J, you are worth it. But I'm going to warn you ahead of time if you get whiny about having to go to the doctor's for a shot, you're going to get an earful from me about how I became a human pincushion to have you and grow you! ;)

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Let me cry a minute...

So I had a hard time getting pregnant.

I had a really rough 14+ weeks of morning sickness/nausea.

I was finally at the "good stage" of pregnancy when I get another good whammy.

Gestational diabetes.

Of course I'm in the lucky 1-4% of pregnant women who get it. Even better, I have none of the risk factors. Seriously?!?!?

I know it's not the end of the world. I do. Hopefully I can control it with diet and exercise - though with my luck, it's not likely. I'm just so frustrated. And, of course, the doctor's office didn't give me any info --- pretty much told me to be waiting for a call from Duke Hospital to schedule my diabetes education class and start my blood sugar monitoring.

I think the biggest thing I'm bummed about is that I was hopeful since a lot of other area of trying to get pregnant and the beginning of my pregnancy were difficult - that at LEAST I'd be able to have a normal, natural labor and delivery. But, women with gestational diabetes often have larger babies (since their bodies can't control the sugar levels) who can be injured by coming out of the birth canal. Thus the vast majority are delivered via C-section.

So I'm just kinda weepy. I want to go home and have a good cry. I know I'll get over it and I'll wake up tomorrow and have a more positive spirit about things.

But for now, it just sucks. :(

We found a nursery dresser!

Chad isn't too picky about much - but when it comes to purchasing furniture (of the wooden variety) he likes to put his two cents in.

Here are the issues:
1) Chad likes REAL WOOD furniture. No engineered wood, pressed-particle board drawers and backing, etc. If he's going to spend the money on something, he wants it to last for years.
2) Real wood is expensive.
3) Chad wants me to be cost-conscious when it comes to nursery decorating.

So I did some looking. I found some nice looking pieces for a great prices, expect they were made with materials Chad would frown at. I found some real wood pieces that looked great, but they had a price tag Chad would frown at.

This was not going to work out well.

So last week - after I spent lots of time researching options for a dresser for the nursery - I expressed my frustration to him. I asked him if HE was the one in charge of looking for the baby's furniture for a good cost and high quality, where would he start?

He told me to look into unfinished furniture stores - that he wouldn't mind painting the dresser himself if we could get a nicer piece of furniture for less money.

Score!

So we headed to a local unfinished wood store on Sunday and checked out the selection. We found a couple pieces that fit the bill, but I liked this shaker-style one better. Chad liked one that was a bit rounder and had the drawers set on the outside (instead of flush). He asked how we would decide which one since we both liked a separate one a teeny bit better.

I said easy... the person carrying the baby decides. ;) So that's that! There's a cute matching end-table that goes with it, so hopefully Chaddy can go pick up our pieces this weekend and he can start on the finishing!

Monday, May 16, 2011

Prayers

I forgot to mention in all my pessimistic grumbling that I know a family that needs some REAL prayers. I've been lucky to get to know a lady who had an IUI right around the same time I did and we're only a few days off on our due dates.

Due to some complications with her placenta not developing the way it was supposed to - and therefore not nourishing the baby - she was forced to deliver her little boy Liam at a little past the 25 week mark -- weighing 1 lb and 10.5 inches. Her little fighter is doing fine for now - all things considered - and was able to let out a good cry for her right after he came out, and has been grasping her finger when she comes to visit him in the NICU (which just makes my heart melt.) According to her doctors, babies have a 70% chance of surviving at 25 weeks. The rate jumps to 95% at 28 weeks.

It just goes to show how seriously every day I get to carry baby J is. Each day makes a HUGE difference in his ability to survive outside the womb if some unexpected complication would arise.

She had her baby last Thursday, and was sweet enough to post some pictures of him a few times already. Just seeing that little boy made my heart break - because I know our little baby is likely about the same size (if not a bit bigger, since - as far as I know - I'm not having any placenta issues). Continue to keep Liam and his mama and daddy in your prayers as he continues to fight. He'll likely be in the NICU until August or September... so he has a long road ahead of him.

Here he is... about 3 days old. Check out daddy's wedding ring by his head so you can see the size difference:

The (uncomfortable) weekend

So I had been riding the pregnancy high for several weeks now - feeling great, tons of energy, etc.

Because of that, I feel bad to complain over one crummy weekend... but hey, it happens.

Friday morning I had my 3-hour glucose challenge test. Ugh - I wouldn't wish that stupid test on my worst enemy. I'm lucky that when I called to tell my mom Thursday that I failed the one hour test and had to go back for the 3-hour the next day, she quickly said "I'm coming with you." It's one of those things that I would never have thought to ask my mom or Chad to come along, but I'm sooooooooo glad she was there. (Tip #1 to girls having to do the 3-hour tolerance test: bring someone with you)

For whatever reason, 90% of my nerves were tied up into having to drink that beverage again. I have a hard time chugging drinks to begin with... nevermind something that tastes like you put a whole jar of this:

into a bottle of this:

But, smart girl that I am, I decided to bring along a straw with me (Tip #2) to hopefully get it down faster (which definitely helped.)

So the appointment went something like this:

8 a.m. - baseline blood draw #1 (some folks said they only had to get finger pricks... not me - they got the whole vial of my blood. but infertility completely cured my fear of needles... so this part wasn't bad)
8:01 a.m. - chug, chug, chug
(8-9 a.m.: feeling like my eyes were bulging out of my head and my heart was going to explode, talking a million-miles-a-minute to anyone and everyone in the Labcorp waiting room)
9 a.m. - blood draw #2
(9-10 a.m.: continued heart racing, feeling sick to my stomach and like I wanted to pass out at the same time)
10 a.m. - blood draw #3
(10-11 a.m.: begged the nurse to let me walk around for awhile --- against the rules since if I would have passed out they would be liable --- but she obviously liked me and let me do it. Tip #3 - be super sweet to your nurse and ask them to let you walk around the building or something -which they'll be more likely to do if you have someone with you- because you'll feel like you want to kill someone sitting in a waiting room for 3+ hours)
11 a.m.: blood draw #4

So yeahhhhh, it was a REAL fun morning... and afternoon. I should find out today whether or not I "passed."I'm trying to keep cool about it - because honestly, it really isn't the end of the world to have gestational diabetes... but it's one more thing to have to worry about so obviously it'd be super nice to get an "all clear" from my OB.

The rest of the weekend wasn't much better. I've had an off-and-on headache that isn't going away, and just general uncomfortableness in my back and tailbone (that maternity massage I have booked in 2 weekends is looking better and better.) And then last night, I obviously was sleeping in an odd position because I woke up with a searing pain in my back and it took me awhile to find a comfortable position to fall back to sleep.

But despite it all, I've had a very active baby this weekend. I felt him pretty constantly throughout - with some of the most crazy movements yet. Saturday afternoon I was laying on the couch and J was obviously practicing his "So You Think You Can Dance" skills or SOMETHING because he was moving so hard and so fast that for the first time I could actually SEE my stomach moving... not just feel it. He put on a repeat performance (to a slightly lesser extent) last night that Chad got to feel.

So all in all, that was my weekend. Hoping for good news from the doctor this afternoon and a more comfortable week ahead!

Thursday, May 12, 2011

Um, excuse me dcotor, I don't FAIL tests....

Just got word that I failed my 1-hour glucose challenge...

Which means I got an higher reading for sugar in my blood than they want to see...

Which means I get to start my Friday morning off drinking TWICE as much nastiness as I had to Monday morning, followed by 3 hours of blood drawings.

Soooo, yeah. I'm pissed. And scared. And hope I pass the 3-hour one because I realllyyyyyyyyy don't want to have gestational diabetes.

And yes I already cried.

Bummed.

Diaper Bag - check!

Okay, so here is the thing. If I know exactly what I want - I am a quick trigger person. I don't hesitate. I whip out my credit card and do the dang thing.

So I've learned to pay attention to my instincts if I don't want to instantly purchase something. Because if I have to hem and haw over it... and then I purchase... almost always I get buyers remorse. That's how I've felt for the past 6 months about diaper bags. I'd see something I'd like, make a note of it, and even tell myself that I'd really like it.

But there would always be something that held me back. I never had the urge to take out my credit card and swipe.

Truth: finding a diaper bag is no easy feat. There are soooo many different styles, sizes and shapes. Different patterns and materials. Reviews that are conflicting - too big, too small, not enough compartments, too many compartments, not wipeable enough, not good enough material, not as pictured, etc., etc., etc.

So, yesterday I was very close to purchasing this yellow Liz Lange diaper bag. I had been eying Liz Lange bags since the beginning... but for some reason I couldn't pull the trigger. Sure, of everything I had seen, I liked it best. It looked the most like something I would carry. I liked the bright yellow leather and gold hardware. But then I'd hesitate - I was afraid after a few months of bright yellow, the color would wear on me. I was afraid that the a bright color in the winter would look funny. I was scared that yellow would clash with about 50+% of my outfits.

And, honestly, if I'm buying a diaper bag because it looks like something I would carry, I need it to be something that at least matches the majority of my wardrobe.

So I kept looking. It wasn't easy.

I thought about this one...

or this one...

or this one...

but none of them felt 100% right... though there were parts of them I liked for different reasons. But still, nothing "trigger worthy."

And then I found it.
The Storksak Gigi. It was me in a diaper bag. Simple. Good quality. Without the bells and whistles. Something I could carry all the time and not get sick of. Something that if Chad had to carry around a shopping mall, he wouldn't feel like an idiot. Something that even post-baby would probably work great as a laptop bag. It just worked. I had found it.

The next decision. Brown or black. I love them both. How can I possibly decide?!?!

Answer: hassle one of my best girlfriends at the beach with a 7:45 a.m. text message to pleaseeee help me decide. It was hard enough for find a bag I actually wanted to purchase- why did it have to tempt me with two excellent color choices.

We both quickly agreed that black with the tan piping would have been ideal... but alas, that was not in the cards. But when I thought about it:

1) Although you can totally do brown+black together, I wear black much more often than brown.
2) Black is less likely to show scratches, pen marks and stains. (A necessity for me in a normal purse - never mind a diaper bag.)
3) My stroller (which this puppy will be hanging on the back of often) is cream and black.

So black it is.And thanks to free two-day shipping, this little princess will be mine all mine come Monday.

So I'm sooooooo glad I didn't purchase one of the other diaper bags just because I was anxious to mark it off my list. I found one that I 100% adore. Three cheers for me!

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Mini Vacays

This will be the first year in a long time that Chad and I won't get at least one full-week beach vacation. I love the beach in the summer time... but saving up extra vacation days for work so that we have more time home with Baby J once he arrives obviously takes precedent.

So we're having to be more creative with some short getaways before baby arrives.


In a couple weeks, we're taking off on a Friday and heading to the National Golf Club in Pinehurst, NC with my parents for a few days of golf (for the boys) and pool/shopping/spa-ing (for me and mom.) We're renting a villa right on the course, and I'm sure it will be beautiful. I told Chad he can golf as much as he wants, but that I'm not leaving Pinehurst until I've 1) spent several good hours getting a little sun by the pool, and 2) gotten a prenatal massage at The Spa at Pinehurst. They have a nice little "stork package" I'm checking out that includes a 50-minute massage, facial and pedicure... and it might need to happen for me.

Then, in early June, we're having a much-less glamorous getaway by heading to Charlotte, NC for a few days. Chad has a work conference to attend, so I'm going to spend my days working from the hotel or a nearby coffee shop and hopefully finding time to grab lunch with a few Charlotte girlfriends while there. Then, at night, we'll at least be able to head to a few nice dinners together and just enjoy being away from the "grind" you experience at home.

A few weeks after that, we're heading back west again to spend a few days on Lake Norman with my sweet sis-in-law, brother, and - of course- baby James. Chad and I always have so much fun with Mike and Molly... so this little road trip will be great bonding time before another baby enters the picture.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Eek! Sorry!

I'm sorry I haven't blogged in a few days. It's been really busy on the work- and home-front.

Some quick updates.

1) My "first" mother's day (I can count it right? I do have a baby... it just lives in my stomach for the time being) was very nice.... despite the fact that Chad tried to poison me by bringing me coffee with 2-month old spoiled half-and-half. The fact he felt so bad he looked like he wanted to cry, I decided to let it go and only bring it up about 15 times, as opposed to 115... like I'd normally do. Anyway, since our Sunday school lesson was on "forgiveness" it was perfect example for 2nd and 3rd graders and our kids loved hearing about how Mr. Chad gave Ms. Caroline bad milk that she had to spit out.

Needless to say, I don't think the mister will ever pour a milk product out again without checking the date and smelling it first (helloooo doesn't everyone do that?).

But he made up for the milk gaffe with an a.w.e.s.o.m.e. mother's day gift... this beautiful Quinn glider and ottoman. Our chair and ottoman, which is more of a neutral beige-grey burlap, is set to arrive in 4-6 weeks. I can't wait! I can already envision it with a big cotton blanket hanging on the back of it waiting for many nights of storytime with our little one.

2) And yesterday, I had a check-up appointment which included the glucose challenge test (still awaiting the results.) First of all, while not absolutely undrinkable - that drink is nasty. 10 fl oz of disgustingness. I felt like I drank 15 melted freezer pops (and I don't like freezer pops) at 8:30 in the morning. But I chugged it down as quickly as possible and hopefully won't have to repeat the test!

On a separate note... well, the weight gain finally arrived. After 20 weeks of pregnancy, my +2 lb weight gain is a thing of the past (wah wah wahhhhh), and I managed to put on another +7lbs in the past four weeks. Thankfully though, I'm pretty sure 95% of the weight gain has been in my stomach and not elsewhere. We'll see how long that lasts me. While you feel like having a panic attack to see you've gained 7lbs in 4 weeks, I have to remind myself it is for the sake of the baby's health... and weight gain is a GOOD thing.

I have a brutally honest friend who works in the office next door to mine who promises to tell me the moment she notices I've started waddling instead of walking. So far, so good. But I'll be honest, if I'm ever picking anything up from the floor, I've started giving out an ugly sounding grunt that you honestly cannot control. I never thought I'd see the day where I have to get other people to pick up things I've dropped, but I'm slowly inching in that direction.

All right- time to sign out. Baby J is giving me some good stomach jabs to remind me I need to go chug some water. Happy Tuesday!

Friday, May 6, 2011

Pregnancy Week by Week 22-24

Weeks 22-24 (Month 5)Baby Size: Papaya
How I feel about being pregnant: It really is amazing. I feel healthy, energized, beautiful and excited. The baby is definitely growing a lot, and I feel lots of movement during the day and at night.
Symptoms: With the baby's growth, I'm growing too! Lots of days I have lower back and tailbone pain by the end of the day. And, if I make any sudden adjustments at night, I sometimes feel like a muscle is tearing in my stomach... so that's real fun! ;)
Food Cravings: I'll be honest - nothing too crazy! Other than my Crispix -- which I mentioned yesterday. But I really am not eating anything out of the norm, and I honestly don't eat much more than I did pre-pregnancy. The only real difference is I've had a couple random days where out-of-nowhere I am STARVING and have to eat that very second or I feel like I could pass out.
What I'm most excited about: Continuing to work on the nursery. I really love, love, love this room of the house. The paint color is so fresh and serene... I am ready to get a comfy glider and ottoman in there so I can spend more time in there reading and stuff!
Something I've done to prepare for baby: Whew - we've gotten a few major things taken care of. We now have our infant carseat, bassinet, crib and mattress... all the major things we'd NEED to take a baby home. We also have more newborn clothes (thanks Molly and James) than we know what to do with.
Special moment: Painting the nursery with our families was really special. It was a labor of love - but I'm glad we did it together, and with my mom and Chad's dad. It was sweet to have grandparents help make that room so special. Also, it never stops being amazing to me and Chad to feel our baby move. We love those couple hours at night where he's bouncing all around. I love (despite how uncomfortable it can me some times) when he presses his head/back/butt against me because I know it means he's stretching out... and I think it's so sweet. Chad's a big fan of J's "double kicks" - where he'll give me a good one-two punch.

I have my next doctor's appointment on Monday morning. It's a normal check-up, but I have to do the (groan) 1-hr glucose challenge where I have to chug this syrupy sweet fruit punch concoction and then get my blood drawn to see how my body is handling the sugar -- an indication of gestational diabetes. Normally this wouldn't be terrible, but the idea of chugging a sugar-filled drink first thing in the morning (for a girl who doesn't drink sugared beverages - coffee or anything) is not really appealing. Hopefully I pass the test!

Thursday, May 5, 2011

If there is any truth to the old wives tale...

... that your baby will love what you eat a lot of during pregnancy...

Baby J is going to loooooooooooooooooove Crispix.

No lie... I think I've eaten my weight in Crispix during pregnancy. It's like crack to me. At any given point during the last few months, I've eaten them for breakfast, lunch, snack and dinner... and sometimes for all four during the same day. I average about a box a week.

This

+

This

= Happy me.

Last night I was having heartburn and didn't feel like the original delicious meal I had planned... so I went to the pantry. Chad, anticipating what was about to happen, said "Don't even think about it."

But sure enough, my old friend Crispix came down and that was my dinner (with the addition of a few cut up strawberries.) And life was good again.

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

My produce box: May 3

I got two boxes full of goodies last night. Here is the rundown...

For 21 credits, about $21, I received:



- Cabbage, Green (1 head)
- Sugar Snap Peas (~2/3 lb.)
- Cucumbers (2 ct.)
- Salad Mix (~1/3 lb.)
- Sweet Potatoes, Covington, (~2.0 lbs.)
- Baby Bok Choy (~1 lb.)
- Strawberries (~1 lb.)
- Sourdough, Old World (1 loaf)

You'll notice the salad mix, sweet potatoes and sourdough are repeats from last week. Why? They were all DELICIOUS.

And my resulting menu is:

Tuesday: Homemade grilled BBQ chicken, coleslaw and sour cream + dill cucumbers
Wednesday: Ginger and garlic stir-fried sugar snap peas and bok choy over white cheddar polenta
Thursday: Sourdough grilled cheese sandwiches (Chad made using Cabot white cheddar and our bread last week and it was ah-maz-ing) with garden salad (greens, sugar snap peas, cucumber) and homemade dijon+shallot vinaigrette

And of course, I'll be munching on my pound of strawberries for as long as I can stretch them.

Our menu from last week worked out great, and provided us with some flexibility. I was planning on just serving a big garden salad for dinner last Thursday, but we ended up having our friends David and Jamie come over... so I served a big salad along with cheese tortolleni that I added tomatoes, olive oil and wilted arugula too. And then on Sunday, we cooked for just the two of us at home using the remainder of our Papa Spuds items --- Chad grilled a couple beef filets (which I didn't eat... wasn't feeling the red meat) and then I made a salad with the rest of our pea shoots and salad mix (along with some shaved carrots and garbanzo beans), used the leftovers from our roasted sweet potatoes to turn them into a mash with a little butter, brown sugar and cinnamon, grilled squash and zucchini (which we had sitting in the fridge from the week prior) and used the rest of our sourdough to make fresh garlic bread.

So first week of Papa Spuds = success! Hope our items from this week are just as yummy!

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Death of bin Laden

I don't have the time or energy to get on my soapbox about how I feel about this - his death and the aftermath.

But these two quotes sum up my thoughts on the issue:

"There's only one Man's death that has ever made this a better world. Only one death that has ever led to lasting peace. And only one death that is worth celebrating, and He died for bin Laden ... and for me."

-and-

"Celebrate justice without ceasing to pray for the redemption of your enemies."

Cooks Illustrated Project

I blogged last week about my low-cost art project to fill an empty wall in our kitchen. Since we were on a worker-bee kick anyway this weekend with the nursery, we decided to knock out both projects.

Here's before:

And after:

I think it looks great and was exactly what the wall needed. It also really ties the kitchen, breakfast nook and living room together.

Letters to J: First Times

Hi, my little boy,

Sunday, after two days of hard work painting your nursery, assembling your new crib, hanging your curtains and organizing some of your clothes, I reflected for a bit.

Your daddy was downstairs working on something, so I just sat down in the middle of your new room and cried. Hard. For awhile. I don't think your daddy even knew. I just thought about how this time last year I doubted that I'd ever have a baby.

I never thought I'd be able to watch my stomach grow and feel a baby moving inside me.

I never thought I'd get to wear ugly jeans with elastic waistbands to accommodate a growing belly.

I never thought I'd get to pick out paint colors and crib bedding.

I never thought I'd get the chance to sit in the freshly painted nursery of my own little baby.

And I just wept. It brought back all those old feelings. All those times where I'd just cry for hours and hours because I didn't understand why God didn't want me to have a baby. Your daddy would hold my hand, give me a hug and reassure me, "We WILL be parents. We don't know when or how... but you're going to be a mom one day. I just know it."

And now here we are. According to calculations, you're about a foot long and weigh a little over a pound. Not a little poppy seed any more, buddy. We've come a long way. And I'm starting to see maybe a little of what God was doing in making me wait for you. Namely - I think I can see more clearly what's really important in this whole thing. Yes, it's a blast thinking about your nursery and selecting your stroller, carseat and crib. But really, none of it matters. It's just stuff. And, if the tornadoes whipping across the south are of any indication - it can all be gone in an instant.

All I need in this crazy world of ours is that sweet daddy of yours, and a healthy little you.

I love you,
mama

Monday, May 2, 2011

J's Nursery: Ohhhh the painting!

So this weekend, we set out to paint J's nursery. I had called my father-in-law ahead of time for his assistance - but told him that according to the instructions given on Project Nursery, it didn't appear to be too hard.

HA! Of course, f-i-l knows better than to listen to me when it comes to how difficult things will or will not be. He (logically) figured that since every person's wall is a different size and shape, there is no "one-fits-all" set of instructions. Besides, he wanted the pattern to be perfectly symmetrical on all sides.
{here's the man behind the magic}

So, father-in-law and Chad sat down with pen, paper, tape measure and a calculator to make it happen.
{having an engineer as a f-i-l once again pays off. oh yeah, and i hate math.}

{the taping begins!}

{i wonder if chaddy would have still married me if he knew ahead of time the work involved}

{MPLT's mama here to help with painting!}

{using a chalkline to make sure it's straight}

{paint over the tape... crossing our fingers this worked!}

{RIP lots of tape}

{woke up at 7 a.m. Sunday to tear off the tape to see if it worked. success!}

{daddy assembling j's crib}

{yay! we did it!}

{nursery before}

{nursery after!}

Can I just say that I love, love, looooooooooooooove it? A million thanks to Melisa @ Project Nursery for sharing her great design with the rest of us! What a great start to the nursery and now I get to find little knick knacks to customize this little room to make it ours.

Next step:
1) Finding a glider + ottoman I love (a la this one) without breaking the bank. Not sure if this will be possible, but I'm determined.
2) Finding a white dresser and matching end table.

And the great grilled cheese debate is over

Of COURSE it's a lunch food!!!!!!!!! I knew my readers were smart.

I told Chad he owed his solo "breakfast" vote to our friend Amy who I swear only sided with Chad so he didn't feel stupid by himself. ;)

Thanks for voting. ;)