Monday, December 9, 2013

The best kind of busy

This season of my life is so incredibly sweet that sometimes, in complete awe, I just have to stop and look around. I want to remember it all. 

The past few years have been a whole lot of busy, busy, busy, rush, rush, rush. Working 50+ hours a week, one or two grad classes a semester, summer sessions, and summer school mixed with Jeff's 60+ hour work week and both of his baseball teams, while still balancing family and home life. Sometimes it felt like we were just getting through the week then slogging through the weekend, and for what? In no way will I say that my life didn't have purpose, because it always has, in so many ways, but my purpose has completely changed. 

I have always given so much of myself to my students, throwing myself into my school work and taking too much of it home with me, physically and mentally. But now, as I find myself going into my third month away from the classroom, I have found a new purpose. If I'm being honest, as much as I've always wanted to be a stay at home mom, part of me wondered if I would feel lost without my students, my creativity, the energy of the classroom. I always knew that being a mother was the ultimate goal in my life but in a society that seems to glamorize a busy, overworked lifestyle, I wondered if staying home with my baby would set me apart, even if it is only for a season.

And yet, I am busy. My life is full. It is rewarding. But most days, I don't get dressed until after noon time and when I glance in the mirror, I see that my hair is ten kinds of crazy, my shirt is all sorts of stretched out and stained from being pulled and spit on, and good Lord, my pedicure, if you can call it that, is in dire need. I always felt so accomplished with a good pedicure but I guess my tune has changed. 

Some days, when Jeff gets home from work, I see him glance over at the sink, which is still full, or at the dozen dog toys strewn across the floor, and at my coffee cup still sitting next to me while Ellen is on at 4:00, and I know what he's thinking. Still, as I look down at my daughter, who is nuzzled up to me, filling her belly and looking into my eyes, I know that the day's greatest accomplishment is that 12 pound bundle of love sitting in my lap, smiling, happy, healthy. Even when it doesn't look like it from the outside, I am busy all day. Rocking, shushing, snuggling, singing, swaddling, kissing, changing, reading, walking, kissing, bouncing, tummy-timing, and more kissing. I am so busy. My life is so full. It is so rewarding. 

I don't ever want to lose the person I was before I was someone's Mommy; the person who was showered and out the door by 6:30am and could get 25 kids converting fractions and loving it by 8:00am, but in this short, sweet season, I want to enjoy my new busy. When I feel flustered trying to switch the laundry, take out the trash, wipe down the counters, sweep the floor, so that it looks like I "did something", I realize that I am "doing something" all day long. And on the best days, I am showered and dressed, using my teacher voices to read stories, with the hum of the dishwasher and washing machine in the background, a tired dog at my side and a happy baby in my lap. 

If I don't get to return a phone call, or update my blog, or check the mail, it will still be okay. If I don't get to the dishes or put away the laundry, it will be there tomorrow. At this point, I don't know how long I will get to be home all day with my sweet baby, being the only one who can meet her needs. She will only be this little once and I know that I will blink and be back in the classroom, up late preparing lessons, rushing to get dinner on the table so I can post online for a grad class. For now, I will enjoy being the best kind of busy I can be, because I know too well, that babies don't keep.

Mother, O' Mother, come shake out your cloth,
Empty the dustpan, poison the moth.
Hang out the washing, make up the bed,
Sew on a button and butter the bread.

Where is the mother whose house is so shocking?
She's up in the nursery, blissfully rocking.
Oh, I've grown as shiftless as Little Boy Blue,
Lullaby, rockaby, lullaby loo.
Dishes are waiting and bills are past due,
Pat-a-cake, darling, and peek - peekaboo.
The shopping's not done and there's nothing for stew,
And out in the yard there's a hullabaloo.
But I'm playing Kanga and this is my Roo.
Look! Aren't his eyes the most wonderful hue?
Lullaby, rockaby, lullaby loo.

The cleaning and scrubbing can wait till tomorrow,
But children grow up, as I've learned to my sorrow.
So quiet down cobwebs; Dust go to sleep!
I'm rocking my baby and babies don't keep.
~ Ruth Hulbert Hamilton

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Noelle's First Halloween!

As soon as I knew I would be having a Fall baby, I immediately began thinking about Halloween costumes. Halloween has always been one of my favorite holidays and it would be Noelle's first holiday. Jeff and I always have some sort of ridiculous couples costume so we knew we needed a family costume this year, especially since it was Noelle's first. Thankfully, Jeff doesn't think this is silly and we usually start plotting and making our costumes early in the season.

When I started looking for baby costumes, I ran into two issues. Halloween costumes for small babies tend to be sized 0-6 months and expensive. I think a six month size range is pretty ridiculous, especially considering our little peanut is still wearing some of her newborn clothes. I'm also not a fan of spending a lot of money on a costume that will be worn once and most likely be way too big. Of course, regardless of this, I still began to stress out that she needed the perfect costume. On Halloween, my niece comes up to trick or treat in our neighborhood and I knew that Noelle would be staying home to pass out candy with Daddy, since it was supposed to be rainy. The weekend after Halloween we had a costume party to go to, so I knew that she would eventually need a costume. It was the perfect recipe for stress for a type-A, first time mama.

It all worked out and our little pumpkin had a great first Halloween.

Our bigger pumpkin isn't the biggest fan of being dressed up. He has his 'Mom, you're embarrassing me' look totally down.

Daddy is the sweetest and carved a very special pumpkin for our girl.

And our first Halloween as a family of 3 was a success! Just a couple of farmers with our sweet chicken.

We have called Noelle, little chicken, since she was born so naturally it was the best costume choice.

Have you seen a cuter chicken?! Doubt it!

This was such an easy costume to make. I found some DIY chicken costume tutorials online, but again they all seem to be geared towards bigger kids and use feather boas. Let me just say that feather boas are the most annoying things ever. I bought one to try and there are feathers everywhere just from having it in the bag and I didn't even take the tag off of it. So I improvised a bit so that my chicken would be comfortable and I will be returning the boa. I used a hot glue gun to glue single feathers to the front of a long sleeve onesie. I originally used spray adhesive but it left a heavy chemical smell on the onesie and I couldn't have her hanging out in that all night. So now I have two feathered onesies, live and learn. I bought a pack of plain headbands and used the white one to glue red feathers to. I actually used a peacock feather that had a wire in it, removed the peacock feathers, keeping just the red ones, and used red felt to position it and hot glue it to the headband. My mom picked up orange pants and also gave her Halloween socks, which we reused for this costume. SO simple! The whole thing took less than 15 minutes to put together and cost under $10.

Noelle's first holiday was a success! Even though time needs to slow down, next year will be so much fun when she can walk around to collect candy that her mom & dad will eat. Hope your Halloween was just as fun and that you are getting to eat all your kid's candy!

Monday, October 28, 2013

A perfect Fall weekend!

Anyone who knows me knows that Fall is my absolute favorite. Like most people, Jeff and I go apple picking every year and we try to pick a different orchard each time. We are so lucky that in New England there are SO many choices and hope to keep trying new ones until we run out or find a favorite. This year, we were kind of up in the air about whether or not we would go because we weren't sure when we were going to have the baby and how I would be feeling afterwards. Even though I wasn't really sure about it, I was holding onto hope that we would make it because as much as I look forward to apple picking every year, I always looked forward to apple picking with my babies even more. 

This weekend, we made our annual trip to a new local orchard, as a family of four (no cats allowed). It was a small orchard that allowed dogs so we were excited to avoid the crowds to let our babies experience their first time apple picking. I was a little nervous when we first pulled in because there were only two or three cars there and I thought we made a mistake and that it was just a farm stand. Instead, we found the cheapest prices, nicest people, and an almost empty orchard with the BEST apples we have ever picked. Seriously. The last weekend of picking is usually a pretty lousy selection but almost every apple was practically the size of a small pumpkin and there were so many.

Of course, our little pumpkin slept the whole time. LOVE my Moby Wrap btw.

Our bigger pumpkin enjoyed sampling the local fare.

He was so excited just to be there.

Picking out pumpkins with my babies. Rocky had to be held this tight because he pounced on every pumpkin like it was a ball. He was in his glory.

Since we were practically the only ones there, I started thinking that we wouldn't get a family picture and really, isn't that half the point? Hah! No, but really. Thankfully, my sweet husband is well-trained at this point and he set up the camera on a timer and propped it up on a pumpkin to take my favorite picture, ever.

My sweet family.

This is my happy place. It was such a perfect day. I can't wait for so many more experiences with my little family.

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

The best three weeks

I am in complete awe that I've been a mama for three weeks. Time was absolutely standing still the last few days that I was pregnant and waiting for my baby to arrive and now it's moving so fast I'm afraid to blink. These past three weeks have truly been some of the best times of my life. Even through the exhaustion, endless stream of visitors, and roller coaster of emotions, I just can't stop staring at my sweet baby and feeling so lucky that she's mine. I love watching her make faces and watching her sleep. I love watching her Daddy interact with her. I love that Rocky takes his role as big brother very seriously and already loves her so much. I love snuggling up on the couch with my little family and knowing that all I ever need is right there.

At our last doctor's appointment, when Noelle was one week old, after losing a bit of weight she then surpassed her birth weight, going from her birth weight of 8 lbs 4 oz to 7 lbs 12.8 oz to 8 lbs, 7.4 oz. I still can't believe that I had an 8 lb baby! As chunky as she seems, she's also such a peanut, and getting good use out of her newborn clothes, that I wasn't sure she would fit into. She is such a good baby! She hardly cries and just makes little noises when she wakes up. She's so alert when she's awake and her awake time is getting longer and longer. Although, the past few nights she decided that her awake time should be from 9pm to midnight. As sweet as she is, this sleepy mama's not a fan of that time frame. She does sleep pretty well, going for 3-3.5 hours at night and she goes right back to sleep after eating. During the day she seems to sleep better when she's being held, so now I move the Rock & Play downstairs with me so I can get something done since she sleeps well in that and I just wake her every 2-3 hours to eat. The hardest part has been breast feeding. She nurses well and has right from birth but the first week and a half I was so sore and I feel like all I do is nurse her. Especially during the day when she goes every two-ish hours between feedings. Breast feeding deserves a whole post of its own but that's been the biggest challenge.

Jeff went back to work after about a week and a half and it definitely takes a lot longer to get anything done without him home. He has been such a huge help and has made it very easy for me to just focus on loving on and feeding Noelle. Now that he's not home in the morning, I've been trying to go back to sleep after Noelle's 7am-ish feeding so that I can catch up on sleep but it's hard starting the day at 10am. Especially trying to eat breakfast, feed and change her, and throw a shower in there. We're doing lots of laundry, too, since her newborn clothes are limited. It's amazing how short the day becomes when you're taking care of a newborn. I am on her schedule which doesn't leave time for much else, besides staring at her. I do a lot of that.

As for me, I'm feeling really good. After labor, I was pretty sore all over, like I just ran a marathon, but that went away pretty quickly. My belly went down much faster than I thought it would, it's just kinda mushy. I thought it would be weird to not have a big belly anymore but it is nice to be getting back to my old self, which actually only took less than a week. I can bend over again! My body definitely needs some work but seriously, the breast feeding diet is the way to go. I am down about 30-32lbs, which is 8-10 lbs less than my pre-pregnancy weight. I definitely had/have weight to lose but it was amazing how it just melted right off. This was the last thing I expected, especially after struggling with my weight for the past couple of years. I'm trying to get walks in but that's easier said than done, especially by myself. I do plan on doing a post completely dedicated to weight loss so that it will motivate me to keep going.

There are so many things I don't want to forget about this precious time.
  • The way that Noelle scrunches up her face like a pirate right before she starts nursing.
  • The way that the top of her head smells and even her little piggies.
  • The way that she looks into my eyes like she knows exactly who I am.
  • How sweet her Daddy is with her and how natural fatherhood came to him. There is nothing more precious than watching him interact with her.
  • How she wraps her little fingers around mine when she's nursing.
  • How she fits in the teeny space in my lap.
  • Her sweet little smiles while she sleeps.
  • How she crosses her little hands under her chin when she sleeps on my chest.
  • The little humming noises she makes when she's nursing and wide awake.
  • How sweet my Rocky is with her.
  • The way Jeff suddenly has 10 sets of eyes when he's driving with with a baby on board.
  • How my heart skips a beat when he says things like "my girls" when he asks about us.
  • How many times a day we both look at her and say, "Can you believe she's ours?" or "Look at her now!" when she moves slightly, or "Isn't she the most precious thing in the whole world?"
  • How complete I feel when I'm snuggled up with my little family.
Motherhood is everything I thought it would be and more.

As much as I want to document and share everything, I am trying to soak up every moment with my sweet girl and usually don't have both hands free at the same time. (I actually started this post a week ago!) I am taking a bajillion pictures but I'm suddenly having a hard time with the idea of putting my baby's pictures on the internet. I haven't decided what I'm going to do but in the meantime, I'm going to be limiting her pictures on the blog. I know I'm not a huge blogger but it's just weighing heavily on me. I do hope to get her birth story written and may post monthly updates with regular family stuff but for right now, it's really just hard to post anything with one hand :)

Thank you for your sweet comments, texts, and emails. We are so blessed to have so many people who are already so in love with our little girl. I also feel so lucky to have so many sweet friends that I've made through blogging who are genuinely excited for us and check in with us to see how we're doing. Thank you! Thank you! xoxox

Monday, October 7, 2013


Our sweet baby girl... Noelle Mary

Born on October 1st at 3:00pm.

8lbs, 4 oz, 21.5 inches of complete perfection.

We are doing well and trying to soak up every moment with our precious little girl.

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Looking back... 41 weeks of bliss!

Being pregnant has definitely been the most amazing thing that I have ever done. Week after week, I am in awe over what my body can do and how it is capable of not only creating life but nourishing it, keeping it safe, and caring for it in a way that I could never understand. We were so blessed that we got to experience all of the joys of pregnancy. I know that not all women have this privilege and that makes it even more special to know that I was chosen to take on this responsibility and that my body was able to handle it. I have also loved documenting everything to always remember how special this time was.

Here's a look back at my pregnancy, over the past 41 weeks.

We found out we were expecting on January 14, 2013. 
Jeff insisted I take multiple tests to be sure.

The very first picture of our little bean.
Seeing the heartbeat flicker at only 7 weeks was absolutely phenomenal.

My first bump picture before there was ever a 'bump'

We entered the second trimester and announced our pregnancy to the world.

Soon enough the belly started growing.

During the second trimester, we found out that we were having a little girl!

We had a fabulous gender reveal party with our close family.

In the third trimester, we also had the most beautiful baby shower.

And the belly kept growing and growing.

I have had an amazing support system from the very first day 
and there are SO many people who are already so in love with our daughter.

The biggest support has been my amazing husband, who will be the best Daddy.
He even shared some of his experience here and here.

Here we are now, 41 weeks pregnant, about to meet our baby, and I am so, so lucky.
What an amazing journey this has been!

Monday, September 30, 2013

41 week Bumpdate! The LAST Bumpdate!

This week: I am one week overdue. Baby girl is starting to overstay her welcome and this mama isn't sure how to feel about it. I love feeling her wiggle around in my belly, knowing that my time with her there is limited, but I can't wait to have her in my arms. We have also been sent to Labor & Delivery twice now for non-stress testing and monitoring and we're ready to go back one more time and not be sent home.

How far along? 41 weeks!

Baby's size: Baby P is the size of a jack fruit! Still? I'd like to argue that Baby P is the size of a baby that was supposed to be born a week ago. 

Total weight gain: 22lbs. Down one pound from last week. I'm still blaming my fluid retention since it's serious, y'all. Still.. 22 lbs is way less than I ever thought I would gain and even less than what my doctor recommended but he was still very happy with my weight gain. I'm hoping to have a Biggest Loser style weight loss this week, too :)

Maternity clothes? Yup and I'm over them. I'm busting out of them and wearing the same outfits over and over and over.

Stretch marks: I'm officially marked up on my inner & front thighs, both hips, and lower belly. It is a sad, sad thing but I'm just hoping they will fade enough to make me feel okay about it.

Sleep: Mostly well, actually. Getting up to pee every couple of hours is annoying but I always fall right back to sleep.

Best moment this week: Planning our induction and this week our family will have a new little girl. We also had our last date night as a baby-free couple! 

What I miss: I am really trying to embrace the last of my pregnancy and what I miss most now is wearing my wedding rings. Oh, and wearing real shoes. If you even knew the trouble it took to get me in my Uggs, you wouldn't believe it. I'll be glad to never see a pair of flip flops again!

Movement: ALL over, ALL the time. Except when she's supposed to move for my biophysical profile and she doesn't, so they send us to labor & delivery where she moves like a maniac for two hours straight. Yeah, you can read about that here

Food cravings: We went to Bertucci's and Cheesecake Factory this weekend. Both were places I just NEEDED to eat from. Not even sure if it was a craving or just knowing that I won't be pregnant forever so I better enjoy it all while I 

Food aversions: I didn't want Chipotle. Something might be wrong with me.

Gender: Girl! AND Jeff asked the ultrasound tech to confirm again! haha 

Belly button - in or out? Out

Wedding rings - on or off? Off :( 

Symptoms: Everything you expect when you're a week overdue, but overall, I really do feel great. Not working has made a HUGE difference in how my body is responding to everything.

Labor signs: Crampy but nothing else. My cervix was still 'unfavorable' at last check a couple of days ago but we are moving forward with induction because time's up! I am being induced Monday night, as in tonight!

Mood: Excited, nervous, anxious, ready, not ready. I'm all over the place. I can't believe that I am finally going to have this baby! I'm also worried about leaving Rocky for a few days :( I know he will be taken care of fabulously by a good friend but I'm still sad and worried that he won't know why we just sent him off somewhere for a few days.

Looking forward to: I cannot wait to meet my baby girl!! We are headed to the hospital tonight and it will be a long couple of days but we are ready. I cannot wait until she's in my arms!

Can I ask a favor? Please pray for us. Pray that my body, and baby, responds well to the induction and for a smooth delivery. Pray for a healthy baby girl. And pray for Jeff and me, as we adjust to our new normal. Thank you!!

Friday, September 27, 2013

A little trip to Labor & Delivery

I don't know how it's already Friday. This has been the slowest week yet somehow it's almost over. This was the first week of my maternity leave and yet, my baby is still comfy as can be in my belly! It was nice relaxing a bit but I'm having a hard time being productive since I'm SO tired! It may have been a slow week but we certainly ended it with some excitement.

Yesterday, we had our biophysical profile to check in on baby. Apparently she decided that she wasn't really feeling it. We were in the ultrasound for a long time and the technician was taking measurements and then poking me, measuring, poking, poking, poking. She said she was looking for specific types of movement and the baby just wasn't having it. After a while, and a few changed positions, she got the doctor to see if he wanted to do a non-stress test or if he wanted me to get up and walk around a bit and try the ultrasound again. Well, after looking at the results, he decided to send me to Labor & Delivery for extended monitoring. Then he proceeded to tell me that if they weren't comfortable with the results, we could be staying to have a baby. Uh, what? Pretty sure Jeff and I both shit a brick. Jeff insisted we bring the hospital bags with us "just in case" but I didn't really think we would need them. The doctor checked my cervix again, still nothing, and sent me on my way. 

In the moment, I was pretty nervous and overwhelmed because it just wasn't the scenario I imagined, so I didn't get any information from our ultrasound, except that one of the four points they check for was off. Jeff is pretty sure it was the breathing. Not what we want to hear. I didn't get any pictures; I didn't even get to see the screen during the ultrasound. As in, not even a single peek. The tech usually goes over it at the end but it ended kind of abrubtly. We didn't find out how much she might weigh or any of the measurements. Jeff watched the whole ultrasound but he said that he had no clue what she was looking at most of the time because the tech was just moving from one part to the next and measuring. Looking back now, I'm kind of disappointed that I didn't even get a glimpse. I am SO anxious to meet her, so a little peek would have been awesome, especially since I was so looking forward to it!

Our doctor told us to head over to the hospital and reminded Jeff that he didn't need to drive 100mph but we were both nervous and I think he was going a little fast as soon as the hospital was in sight. I was actually surprised at how nervous Jeff was since he's normally pretty calm and collected. We parked, checked in, and headed up to Labor & Delivery. Once we were upstairs, the nurse set me up on a monitor and explained everything. She told me that we would be there for a couple of hours and that we were just monitoring for movement for assurance that baby was still doing okay in there. It was nice to hear the baby's heartbeat loud and strong, especially after thinking that something might be wrong. The nurse explained that we want to see two movements in 20 minutes and said that her heartbeat should go up about 15 beats for about 15 seconds when she moves. Well, wouldn't you know it, little miss thing decided that she was going to start moving and not stop. Her heart rate and acceleration was not only right on track but it was even better than what they were looking for. In less than a half hour, the in-house doctor was already happy with what they were seeing but they kept me for another hour or so. Baby kept moving and even bumped the monitor off a few times. So apparently she was just sleeping on the job at her first appointment. I feel like I'm saying this more and more now, but what a DIVA!

My doctor wants to see me back at the hospital on Sunday, when he is working, so that he can do another non-stress test. Then, if baby girl has not made her appearance, I will be induced on Monday afternoon. The light at the end of the tunnel is near. If this baby doesn't come on her own, she will hopefully be here by Tuesday. I say Tuesday since we'll be admitted Monday afternoon and my cervix is still "doing squat" so I imagine the induction will be long and go through to the next day. We are so, so excited! Being at the hospital made me a little sad to have to leave yet nervous that we could be there to have a baby. People were definitely looking at me funny when I was walking out of Labor & Delivery with a big belly. Wrong way, lady!

Thankfully, I got my playful, cool, calm hubby back as soon as baby started moving around. He first commented that Sonic might really be the real labor-inducing meal. Jeff was home early today and we had lunch from Sonic, which was my first time ever eating their food. Of course, when the baby was moving, he declared that it was "Sonic good!" Later, when we got our car back from the valet, Jeff thought it smelled different. He asked if I thought it was sprayed with hospital mist. Haha what?! 

So everything is okay with baby girl and hopefully my doctor will reassure me on Sunday that she isn't huge! We'll see if she decides to make an appearance before Monday but if not, we'll be doing our best to patiently wait for her!

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

40 week Bumpdate!

This week: I am officially on maternity leave and have officially passed my due date. I feel a lot more relaxed not having to be at work and on my feet every day but I'm getting more anxious waiting for baby.

How far along? 40 weeks!

Baby's size: Baby P is the size of a jack fruit! I really don't know what a jack fruit is but I would also imagine that Baby P is the size of a baby!

Total weight gain: 23lbs. Up 5 pounds since last week, which I'm really hoping is some kind of fluke. My doctor didn't seem concerned with the jump and I'm assuming it's all the fluid I'm retaining since I can't even finish a meal anymore. 

Maternity clothes? Still rotating a couple of outfits. Now that it's a bit cooler, I'm trying to add cardigans in but only some of my tanks and maternity tops still cover all of my belly, so I need longer cardigans, which is why the past two outfits are almost identical. Luckily, my regular yoga pants are still comfy and I can wear them every day if I'm not working.

Stretch marks: Hips, thighs, and belly. Sad, sad, and sad.

Sleep: I'm falling asleep easier and staying asleep but waking up constantly to pee and sometimes with painful contractions that go away as soon as I get up.

Best moment this week: Not having to go to work on Monday. It is AMAZING to have a little bit of time to rest before baby since it's been so crazy lately.

What I miss: I kind of just want my body back. Not the super-model bod I had before baby, since that wasn't there, but just being able to move around, put socks and shoes on, wear pants that button, not have achy parts. Everything seems to hurt. It's all worth it but it's pretty uncomfortable.

Movement: She is still moving all over the place and I still love every second of it. I will miss this the most when she is on the outside.

Food cravings: Homemade, warm, gooey chocolate chip cookies. They were delicious!

Food aversions: Nothing really.

Gender: Girl!

Belly button - in or out? Out

Wedding rings - on or off? Off :( I miss the sparkle.

Symptoms: Achy knees, hips, and lower back. Heartburn is coming back. I keep waking up with tingly, numb fingers, too. I forgot to ask my doctor but based on Google, my enemy, it sounds like pregnancy-induced carpal tunnel.

Labor signs: Hah! Still cramping with lower back pain but my cervix hasn't changed at all.  My doctor also said that the baby really hasn't dropped. Her head is still kind of high and when he listened to her heartbeat, the doppler was close to my belly button. We go back to the doctor tomorrow for a biophysical profile, which will include an ultrasound and non-stress test. This is normal for going past my due date but my doctor is interested in getting a better idea of her size and checking out her positioning.

Mood: Anxious. I can't wait to meet my precious baby!

Looking forward to: Oddly enough, going into labor! I wanna have a baby!!!!

*Post may be edited after my appointment tomorrow, if anything changes, since I normally don't have two appointments in one week.


Monday, September 23, 2013

Last weekend without a baby? Or was it?

Today is my due date. September 23, 2013 is the date that has been engraved into our minds since January and here I am wondering if we just had our last weekend as a couple. This could have been our last weekend without a baby. I think that's the part that makes expecting parents so crazy. The 'could be' part. If maybe today is the day. If it's not, then is it tomorrow? I really didn't expect to go to my due date but I think a lot of people start to feel that way once it gets super uncomfortable at the end. Now I'm here and every time I do something, it's in the back of my head that next time, we may have a baby there with us. Yikes.

Today is also the first day of my maternity leave. After my doctor's appointment last week, it was decided that this past Friday would be my last day of work until January. I thought I might try to keep working but once my sub was hired and started shadowing me, it just made sense to stop. I'm really, really uncomfortable and spend the majority of my day on my feet, teaching. When I'm not teaching, I'm peeing or waddling to the copiers or recess duty. I think it will be nice to just wait out the baby from the comfort of my home without reenacting the water-breaking scene from Coneheads, in front of my students.

On Friday, my students made me a card in Art class that is seriously the sweetest thing. They each read off one reason why they think I will make a great mom. If you want to know the fastest way to make a pregnant woman cry, that's it. Seriously, what a great send-off.

ps. I teach math, not spelling :)

By the end of the day on Friday, my feet were the worst I had ever seen them. I showed them to a couple of people but can't decide if I want them on the internet or not yet, haha. Gross. We had Back to School Night on Thursday and I worked from 7am-8pm. When I got home at 9, I went to bed and my feet never really went down. Because of this, I literally sat on the couch all night on Friday and all day on Saturday, waiting for them to explode. I only got up for a couple of hours; when Rocky had a spontaneous puppy play date and when I randomly got up to make spinach lasagna rolls to throw in the freezer. Weird day.

Sunday, Jeff and I went out to breakfast for the third Sunday in a row, because, well, it might be our last weekend to do that baby-free. We tried a local waffle house that we have never been to and oh, my sweet Jesus. I had the Elvis waffle. A bacon waffle with peanut-butter, bananas, bacon, and honey. AMAZING! This might be our new spot.

Then we did our grocery shopping at Walmart for the third weekend in a row not because it could be our last time but because I swear, Jeff gets a high on saving money. He walks around Walmart singing, "suddenly I see!" like the commercials and then when he buys something from the Great Value Walmart brand, he yells out "Wow! Great value!" I condone this type of behavior, so we're a hot mess. But really, in the grand scheme of things, we don't stand out more than most of the folks in Wally World.

When we got home, Jeff set out to finish removing all the mulch from the back patio and making it stone, and I started cooking. I've been slowly making and freezing meals for after-baby and today I whipped out two gluten-free chicken pot pies, a batch of turkey meatballs, pasta sauce, and three eggplant parm's, two for freezing and one for Sunday dinner. 

This isn't the typical eggplant parm that I usually make. This is Scalini's "Labor-Inducing" Eggplant Parmigiana. It was featured on Good Morning America and is 'guaranteed' to induce labor and the owner shared his recipe. The restaurant is out of Georgia and they have a baby wall that features the hundreds of babies born after their moms ate the famous dish. Clearly this crazy mama was all over that. I do have to say, that for whatever reason, this meal took me way too long to make and it was frustrating to use gluten-free breadcrumbs, so I hope that it works. I'm going to be pretty annoyed if I did all that for nothing. Although, I did get three trays of parmigiana out of this and it was really good. My other recipe just isn't as time consuming but it's also not as labor-inducing.

According to the testimonies, I have 48 hours from 6:30pm on Sunday, 9/22 to go into labor. Let's go, baby girl!

*40 week doctor's appointment is tomorrow and Bumpdate will be up on Wednesday!

Thursday, September 19, 2013

39 week Bumpdate!

If I look tired in this picture, it's because I am. 
Forgetting to take bump pictures until 9:00 at night isn't good for anyone, 
especially Rocky.

This week: I am tired and achy. Which explains the lack of posts besides Bumpdates. Home by 5:30, in bed by 7:30 most nights this week. My sub started on Tuesday and so this will be my last week at work. This was just decided at my appointment on Wednesday and it's the weirdest thing. I wasn't really sure how long I would work if I didn't have the baby by her due date but it's just becoming impractical for me to be on my feet all day, when I'm unable to take a break, go to the bathroom, or rest if I need it. So now, I'm just trying to embrace and enjoy the last stretch of my pregnancy.

How far along? 39 weeks! 4 days until my due date!

Baby's size: Baby P is the size of a watermelon!

Total weight gain: Still at 18 lbs, no weight gain this week.

Maternity clothes? I have about five outfits that I'm rotating. I'm trying to be very creative at work so I don't start resembling Charlie Brown.

Stretch marks: The stretch marks on my belly are growing and multiplying :( I'm really so sad over it.

Sleep: I am finally so tired that I'm not tossing and turning anymore. Sleeping with the window open and feeling that cool Fall breeze in the room makes for glorious sleeping weather, too. Although, apparently I'm sprawling out more and snoring. This weekend, I found myself alone at about 3am... Jeff made his way to the guest room and Rocky decided to sleep on the couch. Really, guys?

Best moment this week: Just finally getting all the last minute things done. Sub is hired and already working in my room, baby's stuff is washed and all set up, house is clean, bags are packed, pre-baby mani and pedi is done, we are ready for baby!

What I miss: I am so looking forward to a large italian sub with extra pickles and a pumpkin beer with a cinnamon/brown sugar rim. I'd like both of these delivered to the hospital immediately after delivery, please and thank you.

Movement: Yup! She's totally out of room and my whole belly rocks from side to side when she stretches.

Food cravings: Back to cereal. I can only eat small meals so I think that's part of it but I just had to have Corn Pops this week. Like, needed them immediately.

Food aversions: Nothing really.

Gender: All the bows I ordered from Etsy are arriving and that means one thing! Baby girl!

Belly button - in or out? So out. One of my students actually said the other day, "I've been meaning to ask you this.. does your belly button always stick out so far?" Haha this is my life.

Wedding rings - on or off? They're off. And my work somehow accidentally changed my mailbox back to my maiden name so I feel like a hoochie mama these days.

Symptoms: Where to begin? I'm so uncomfortable that it's making me forget how amazing and easy my pregnancy was. I'm trying not to complain but the aches, swelling, and pressure are almost unbearable at times.

Labor signs: Cramping and lower back pain, which I was informed are contractions. Although, my cervix is "doing squat" according to my doctor at my appointment Wednesday. Still hoping for baby to come on her own in the next week!

Mood: Anxious, excited, nervous, excited, and so emotional over every little thing. 

Looking forward to: Meeting my sweet girl and watching my little family grow.