Tuesday, December 9, 2014

32 Weeks

Weeks pregnant: 32
Baby size: Large Jicama
Total weight gain: +29 lb
Total waist gain: +10"

Physical stuff: Late pregnancy hit me like a freight train this week. Insomnia, acid reflux, fatigue. I've been waking up at 3 or 4am every night and having trouble going back to sleep. If I do fall asleep, it's not long before I have to get up anyway, so then I'm tired all day. I'm also super reflux-y, especially with my prenatal vitamins and iron supplements. I thought I saw a stretch mark this morning, but I'm pretty sure it was just a crease from sleeping. I've never had stretch marks before–I've heard that's a hereditary thing, so that would not be a welcome change. Appetite is way down (although still eating my fair share of Christmas cookies), which is good since I only have 1 pound left that I'm allowed to gain. Also serious spider vein thing going on in my legs. It's gotten worse each pregnancy, and it's pretty bad now. So yeah, lovely.

Emotional stuff: I just need to skip this category for the moment. Too much to even get into.

Baby prep/birth prep: Prenatal appointment this week was very routine. Weight, blood pressure, heartbeat, check, check, check. The girls came with me and got a kick out of hearing the heartbeat. It was cute. I had a great influx of hand-me-down baby boy clothes this week. I had so much fun sorting and oohing/aahing over all the cute stuff.

To do list:

  • unpack baby clothes and gear/set up
  • write out instructions for helpers who come after baby is here
  • make list of people I can call to watch the kids when I need to go to the birth center
  • freeze a couple of meals
  • freeze lactation cookies/other snacks
  • get birth ball ready
  • order breast pump through insurance
  • dinner/movie with Josh
  • meet with birth photographer
I did start organizing baby clothes this week, but I haven't gotten them put away in drawers yet. Trucking along. Two months to go.

Saturday, November 29, 2014

30 Weeks

Weeks pregnant: 30 (31 tomorrow actually)
Baby size: Cabbage
Total weight gain: +28 lb
Total waist gain: +9"

Physical stuff: I can no longer run–ok, not that I run actually ever, but basically if Olive starts running away from me, I am now completely screwed. I am kind of terrified to get on the scale these days, since I've basically gained everything I'm supposed to gain, and I still have 8-10 weeks to go. Although, I do take solace in the fact that I think I was in the same boat with Olive's pregnancy, and then somehow I didn't gain anything the last 2 months. I've been trying to walk when I can–the Florida weather was great for that, or I walk on the treadmill at the gym. I get winded going up steps or walking uphill, and lots of Braxton-Hicks happening every day. Otherwise feeling really good, all things considered. Even sleeping well (knock on wood!), despite how tired I look in this week's belly hot.

Emotional stuff: It's been a great couple of weeks. We had a fantastic family vacation last week, and then it was nice to come home to a short week with the Thanksgiving holiday. We stayed home for the holiday this year and have been enjoying some cozy family time all weekend. I think Thanksgiving weekend is one of my favorites, especially if we don't go anywhere–it makes the weekend feel so super long. Spending the holiday with extended family is fun too but in a more tiring and busy way. Our trip to Florida was really fun–we just spent one day at the Magic Kingdom, and it was a really fantastic, fun, magical day. The girls loved the rides, and Penny had a lot of fun meeting some princesses and Tinkerbell. We thought of questions in advance for the characters, and they all had great answers for us. Cinderella was our favorite–she was incredibly sweet to Penny, spent lots of time with her, and read through the book that Penny had been writing and wanted to show her. She told Penny, "Keep writing, Princess." I'm so glad we got to enjoy this trip before baby arrives, and it gave us some ideas for when we'll go back (probably 4-5 years). We also spent some time at the resort, played in the heated saltwater pool, visited an orange grove, did some art projects (tie-dye, painting), and just had quality family time.

Baby prep/birth prep: I had a prenatal appointment earlier this week–nothing noteworthy really. Belly was measuring 29.5 weeks, so right on target. I had no questions for the midwife, so I'm just trucking along. I have to go every other week now. Still not sure what will happen with sleeping arrangements. Olive has been waking up at night, so Josh takes her in the guest room and lies down with her there. She wasn't ready to be out of her crib when we tried it a month or so ago, but she fights being in her crib so badly. I'm not sure what the answer is for her, but I'm worried about how all this will go when baby comes along. I would love to have her in with Penny, but I'm afraid Olive would keep Penny up and/or wake her. So we'll just wait and see how things go. After looking back on a post from when I was pregnant with Olive, I decided it might be a good idea to make a list of things I need to get done. I wasn't feeling like I had a lot to do, but there are a few things:
  • unpack baby clothes and gear/set up
  • write out instructions for helpers who come after baby is here
  • make list of people I can call to watch the kids when I need to go to the birth center
  • freeze a couple of meals
  • freeze lactation cookies/other snacks
  • get birth ball ready
  • order breast pump through insurance
  • dinner/movie with Josh
  • meet with birth photographer
Ok, maybe more than I thought, but a lot of this stuff can wait until January.

Monday, November 10, 2014

28 Weeks

Weeks pregnant: 28
Baby size: Chinese cabbage
Total weight gain: +24 lb
Total waist gain: +9"

Physical stuff: I'm actually feeling pretty great all things considered. I feel like I've been incredibly lucky with my pregnancies overall. I'm sure a lot of that is related to lifestyle and healthy habits before and during pregnancy, but some of it is good luck. SI joint pain has subsided–I feel tiny tweaks there every once in awhile, but it's really no big deal. I've been walking when I can–hills are really tough for me, and we live in a very hilly area, so I've mostly been walking at the gym. I feel like kind of a slacker only walking for 20 minutes here and there, but something is better than nothing, and I'm trying to cut myself some slack at 6 months pregnant. Plus, I am carrying kids, chasing kids, walking up and down stairs all day long, so hopefully that all adds up. I've also been sleeping really well lately. I know that could change at any moment, so I'm enjoying it while I can.

Emotional stuff: Maybe it's the month of November influencing me, but I've been feeling extra grateful lately. I feel so blessed to have such a joyful and fun family and to get so much quality time with my kids. Even Josh's schedule has been on the light side lately, and our weekends have not been overpacked. I feel like I'm soaking up this time as a family of 4, especially now that the girls are out of the baby phase and into the toddler/preschool phase where they are a bit more independent and their personalities show through more and more. We are sneaking away to Orlando next week, and I'm really excited for that trip. We will just do one day at Disney, hitting a few highlights in the Magic Kingdom, and the rest of the week will be filled with pool time, playgrounds, and just enjoying the sunshine. I think one day of Disney will be plenty because of the girls' ages (1 & 3), and I'm sure we'll plan a big blowout Disney vacation down the road when everybody is old enough to remember and enjoy it. I'm also really looking forward to Thanksgiving–we have a quiet holiday planned at home and have ordered a huge bounty of produce and a turkey from a local family farm.

Nothing new on the baby prep/birth prep front. It's my last month of monthly prenatal appointments. After our vacation I'll start going every 2 weeks.

Friday, November 7, 2014

Sewing Catchup

2014 has been a very slow year for sewing in my life. My sewing stuff did not make the cut on our Europe packing, since we took only 5 suitcases for our family of 4. It all went into storage at the first of the year, and I didn't even get it back from storage until June. Then, I battled with low energy and nausea all summer, so it was all I could do to ensure that my kids and I were clean and fed each day. I've since found time to spend a couple hours here and there in my sewing room, but those moments have mostly been spent mending rather than creating. I'm hoping to squeeze in a few projects for the holidays. I'm also excited because Penny has started asking me to sew specific things for her (like a mermaid outfit), and I think we will have a lot of fun creating together. As bad as I've been about sewing this year, I've been even worse about blogging about sewing for the few things I have made in the last year or so. It's time to do a little catch-up on a few projects I've made that I haven't shared here. Forgive me if I did share some of these already.

Felt Muffins. I can't figure out which tutorial I used, but there are lots of them out there.

New baby gifts. Muslin swaddles, little burp cloths, taggie toys, and bird rattles. The swaddlers are just serged fabric, and the other items are from a pattern book I have, so no tutorial links for those.

This was a kind of whacky patchwork cape for my aunt who was going through chemotherapy. Red is supposed to be a healing color for cancer.

This is a dress I made for Penny from this tutorial (I changed the back a little). It's made from bias cut strips, and it might be my favorite creation yet. She likes to wear it to church because it's in the fancy corner of her closet, which has things she can't wear to school. I have lots of bias strips leftover in these fabrics, so I might work on something coordinating for Olive.

Matching sister mermaid/whale reversible dresses/tops. I used this tutorial and adjusted the sizing. It is the same pattern I used for Penny's first birthday dress, and a super easy one to start with if you are a novice. I have changed the closures a couple of times on these. I love this pattern because it grows with the child from a dress to a top and can be worn for years. I also think they are super cute on sisters because they can wear them on reversible sides and not be totally matching but still matching.

 Felt matching game. This was one of a very few toys that we brought to France. It was an awesome choice because it's tiny and easy to pack, but we played it a lot. And it's beautiful.

 Simple serged snack bags. No tutorial–just cut fabric and serged around the edges.

Now, here is the one project I have made this year. Penny drew this simple rainbow at Sunday school one day, and I thought it was just screaming to be sewn on a t-shirt for her. I dug a white tee from her drawer, photocopied the artwork, pinned the copy to the shirt, and stitched through the lines she had drawn. Sorry for the totally wrinkly lame photo, but you get the idea. It's super cute, and she is proud to wear her artwork on her chest.

Next up, I am working on some mermaid skirts for my girls. We read Fancy Nancy and the Mermaid Ballet, and now Penny really wants to dress like a mermaid. I'm also hoping to make some dolls for Christmas and maybe some dress-up clothes.

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

26 Weeks

I never got around to the 24 week post, but I did take a picture, so I'm adding it into this post. The swan dress photo on the left is 24 weeks, and the one on the right is 26.

Weeks pregnant: 26
Baby size: hothouse cucumber
Total weight gain: +20 lb
Total waist gain: ?

Physical stuff: SI joint pain is back. If you've been around here for awhile, you might remember that I had awful SI join pain with Olive's pregnancy, and I was walking with a cane by the end of it. I am starting to feel tweaks of SI joint stuff, which is mildly freaking me out. I think yoga has exacerbated the problem–I am super flexible, and I think the extra relaxin of pregnancy is putting me over the edge, so I decided to take a yoga hiatus to see if that helps. So far, it has definitely helped. I have been walking instead, which doesn't quite aggravate it the same way, but I have to be careful about not going overboard. Chiropractic did not help in my last pregnancy, but I did try again here in Omaha because my chiropractor here is particularly awesome, but it still didn't help. I got the name of a women's health PT from my midwife. I tried PT in Chicago with Olive's pregnancy, and it didn't help, but I didn't have a specialist, so I will go to this PT if things get worse. It makes sense to me that if things are too loose, PT would be more likely to help than chiropractic, as I likely need strengthening rather than adjusting. Also lots of Braxton-Hicks happening–nothing painful or regular, but I get them when I have to pee, when I need to drink a bit more water, or when I've been extra active.

Emotional stuff: I had been feeling a bit of the change of seasons blues, so I increased my vitamin D intake. It also helped that we have had two weeks of gorgeous clear, sunny, unseasonably warm weather. We carved our pumpkin on Sunday in 80 degree sunshine. I was taken away from blogging partly because an extended family member is having some health issues that are somewhat related to my field of study. I've been spending a lot of my "quiet time" talking with relatives and managing a Caring Bridge page for the family. It's been tough emotionally, but I do like to feel useful–it helps me process things like this better if I can find something to do.

Baby Prep: Hmm, we are kind of back to square one with the sleeping arrangement decisions. We had tried to move Olive to a bed (ok, a mattress on the floor). It went well for a few days, but then went downhill fast, so we decided to just bag it. If she isn't ready, we will just keep her in the crib and play it by ear. We do have a second crib that I mentioned I bought from a friend, but it didn't come with a mattress, and I don't really want to shell out for a new one. I know baby will be in our room in the bassinet for at least a couple months, so that buys us at least until spring. So basically, nothing really new on the baby prep front.

Birth Prep: I had a prenatal appointment this week. Belly was measuring 1-2 weeks ahead, which doesn't really mean much at this point. I had my gestational diabetes test, which I passed just fine. While they were doing a blood draw, I asked them to check my thyroid and vitamin D. My thyroid number (TSH) came back at 1.68, which is totally awesome for me. I haven't been on thyroid medication for over a year now, and my numbers have never been better. That is a huge relief for me. My Vitamin D, however, was off the chart low. There are 400IU in my prenatal, and I added in 2000IU a few weeks ago. Now I will add in another 2000IU to make my total daily dosage 4400IU. I'm still not sure that will be enough to raise my levels to adequate based on past experience with this, but I don't want to go crazy with vitamin D when I'm pregnant, so I'll try this for now. I definitely notice depressed mood and more susceptibility to illness when my vitamin D is low. They also found that my hemoglobin was low. I guess it was 11.9 when they checked in early pregnancy, and now it is 10.2. It should be above 11.5, and it has to be above 10.5 in order to deliver at the birth center. My midwife recommended this iron supplement called Floradix and said that many of her patients have seen really good results with this product in raising iron levels. I ordered some on Amazon and will start taking it in two days when it arrives. They won't check again until 35 weeks, so hopefully all will be well by then so that I can deliver at the birth center and have a healthy baby. The nurse did kind of irritate me a bit when she told me "If you went into labor today, you wouldn't be able to deliver here because of your iron level." Seriously, lady, if I went into labor today, I would be delivering a micropreemie, which would be completely inappropriate to deliver at the birth center anyway, and my iron level would be the least of my concerns.

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

22 Weeks

Weeks pregnant: 22
Baby size: spaghetti squash
Total weight gain: +17 lb
Total waist gain: +7"

Physical stuff: I keep getting told how huge I am. I don't really feel like I'm much bigger than with my other two, but maybe I am? I know with Olive I gained weight fastest in the second trimester and then slowed down a lot. I don't think I gained anything in the last 2 months of her pregnancy. When I look back at my blog, at this point with Olive, I had gained 18lb and 8", so I'm right there this time too. Maybe somehow I am carrying differently, or maybe people just don't know what they're talking about. I finally made it back to yoga yesterday, and I'm so glad I did. I felt crummy after I went the last time, several weeks ago. I've been feeling very lazy lately and knew that I needed to be more active. It was stupid to not go because I'd pushed too hard–it makes way more sense to still go but just take it easy during class. I talked to the teacher beforehand, and she was very helpful in showing me some modifications and helping me figure out what would work for me. I have to stay away from too many inversions because my blood pressure is super low, and I think that made a huge difference. I left class feeling great, so I'm definitely going to try to get over there once a week.

Emotional stuff: I know this is complete classic pregnancy symptom 101, but I have been so emotional lately! I never remember feeling this way with the girls, but I am teary and emotional all the time. Sometimes I start crying and can't even figure out why. So bizarre. And completely forget about reading or watching anything touchy-feely. Waterworks. I'm hoping this does not last the next 4 months. I'm also really struggling with the baby name. I knew for sure 100% a girl name, but I'm totally indecisive for a boy. I was kind of that way with both other pregnancies that I knew girl names but never really picked a solid choice for a boy either time. Now that I know I am definitely having a boy, I have no idea what to name him. There are definitely names that I like, but none of them totally feel right. I'm also really hung up on never being able to use the other girl name that I love. Don't get me wrong–I am totally thrilled to have a son and excited about everything that that means for our family and my life, etc. So this is in no way about boy vs girl. It's a total name thing. But in this strange way, it's making me question whether I want to truly be done after 3 kids. Every logical part of me wants to be done with 3, and I have so many really good reasons to be done with 3, but it almost feels like this person with the girl name is missing from our family. Of course, having a 4th child wouldn't guarantee that I'd get to use that name, so it is pretty ridiculous and would be a terrible reason to have a 4th. And I'm sure there are many many people who never got to use a name that they loved, so it's probably a completely normal way to feel/part of life. But there is this, maybe 5% of me, that is having some doubts. I would love to hear someone else say that they've felt this way because I pretty much feel like a complete crazy person on this issue.

Baby Prep: Oh my goodness, have I been having fun getting boy stuff! I caught the last fall consignment sale last week, and I found so many completely adorable little boy things. The sale itself was humongous and a total circus trying to take both kids at lunchtime, but it was worth it anyway. I focused mostly on newborn and 0-3 sleepers, since I know that's all I'll need for the first few months, but I couldn't resist a few adorable and smart little ensembles. I love shopping used. It totally takes the guilt out of it. I am starting to figure out what types of boy clothes I'm into. I like non-traditional boy colors–like everything doesn't have to be blue and grey. And I like simple design, nothing with words. I am also a total brand snob, and I am not afraid to admit it, so anything with certain labels will always make me look twice. It is fun to open this whole new world of kid's clothing. I've also started clearing out some girl stuff. My SIL is having a girl in early Jan, so I can pass on my newborn girl stuff to her, which makes it a little easier to part with it. I sent a big bag of all my tiniest girl stuff her way this week. It really wasn't as hard to part with as I thought it might be. I'm hoping to start consigning what's been outgrown next year, and it will be nice to clear out that storage room real estate.

Birth Prep: I had a prenatal appointment this week. They're all pretty much alike. My blood pressure is super low, which isn't a problem I guess–just might cause dizziness. We talked a bit about flu shot and the new DTap recommendations–I'll probably decline both, but thinking about it. I rarely get the flu shot, but I think I did get it when pregnant before? Maybe? And I've had the DTap shot within the last few years–they're just recommending it with each pregnancy now. They sent me home with the glucose drink so I can do that test at my next visit. They had a dye-free version, so I took that one. We also started discussing birth preference things like circumcision (no), vitamin K shot (no unless some kind of birth trauma occurs), eye ointment (no), hep B shot (no). As you can imagine, the birth center midwives are pretty flexible with these things and gave me the impression that most patients there are kind of on the same page as me regarding these choices. Not that I really care what other people are doing, but it's nice to be in a place that matches my values. We also discussed childcare options for the birth, and I'm thinking I might just pack the kids up and take them down there with us. I kind of want them to be involved, and I think it would be cool to have the kids there. I'd need a babysitter or someone to meet us at the birth center to keep an eye on them, so there are details to work out of course. Somehow, it's hard to imagine them not being there, but we'll see. I'm not feeling great about winging it, but how much can you really plan in this situation?

Monday, September 15, 2014

20 Weeks

Weeks pregnant: 20
Baby size: small cantaloupe
Total weight gain: +13 lb
Total waist gain: +6"

Gender stuff: I will start with gender stuff today because we had our ultrasound this morning! Baby #3 is a BOY!!!! We are super duper excited. Although, in all honestly, I am 100% sure that I would be equally excited either way. Penny thought boy all along and really wanted a brother, so I am thrilled that she will get her wish. I am also excited to indulge in some cute boy clothes–most of our girl stuff is pretty worn by the time Olive gets through it, so it will be nice to change pace a bit. I think it will be great for the girls to grow up with a brother and vice versa. Maybe it will help them understand the opposite sex a bit (most of us are still working on that!). I am also so excited for the mother-son relationship. I of course love experiencing the mother-daughter relationship as a mom, but now I am excited to have both experiences. I think there are/will be challenges and joys in both relationships, and I feel so lucky to experience that full gamut. I'm also excited to experience life through the lens of a little boy, something I have never done. I am positive there will be lots of challenges here, but I am excited to have the chance to experience them. This will be the first grandson for my parents, which is cool. But again, just to be clear, this doesn't in any way mean I am not thrilled to have two girls too, nor do I think that moms of all girls or all boys are missing out.

Physical stuff: More and more baby movement happening. I think baby has moved up a bit because I definitely feel less pressure on my bladder and am not peeing four times a night like in the beginning. Baby gave a huge kick right at the ultrasound wand this morning. It was the hardest kick I had felt–I don't think he liked the ultrasound.

Emotional stuff: I think I am extra sensitive this pregnancy. I'm finding myself annoyed or offended by things that normally wouldn't bother me at all. I have very tough skin, so this is really odd. I am blaming it on pregnancy at the moment, but who knows. I'll be honest and say that I've been a little annoyed by some of the reactions I've gotten today about having a boy. Most people have been perfectly lovely and appropriate, but I have gotten a few reactions in the "just wait–you don't know what you're in for" camp and the "oh good, I'm sure you were hoping for a boy" camp. I would normally just laugh that kind of stuff off, but for whatever reason, it bothered me.

Baby Prep: A friend is selling her crib at a very reasonable price, so we decided to go ahead and grab that to use as toddler bed for Olive. This way, we don't have to worry about when she'll be ready to move out of the crib/toddler bed. We were thinking about getting a twin bed for her or maybe having her share Penny's full size bed, but I think this is a nice solution that will buy us plenty of time for not much money, and then we can figure out as we go. We are planning to try it out in October. We also decided to take a trip to Orlando in November. We had frequently flyer points and a free timeshare, so the trip is basically free, and we thought it would be a fun getaway before baby comes. My mom lives down in FL, so she will join us. We probably won't do the Disney stuff for more than a day or two, but it will be a fun getaway with some special memories with the girls before brother arrives. I can't see getting on a plane with three kids under 5, so I'm thinking this might be our last long distance trip for awhile.

Birth Prep: Nothing much except the ultrasound. All the body parts looked good according to the doctor, and baby looks healthy. Baby measured on target (12 oz) and moved around a lot during the ultrasound. He started out breech and then flipped head down, which is also super normal. I was a little taken aback when they did a 3D u/s at the end of the procedure. They hadn't asked me or told me before they did it, and I wasn't expecting it. I would have preferred to have a conversation about it before they just did it, and it seemed that they only did it to get a picture of the face, so I'm not sure it was necessary. I didn't realize that was standard procedure now (or is it?), so just maybe something to keep in mind for any pregnant women out there.

Here is a cute shot of our happy little dude.

And biggest sis when she heard the news:

When I told Olive she was getting a baby brother, she replied "Pee-yew."

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Gender Predictors

I thought my Baby Gender? post during Olive's pregnancy was really fun. We find out on Monday the baby #3 gender, so I thought it might be fun to try out the old wives' tales again. They had pretty much a total zero success rate last time, so expectations are low of course.

Chinese Gender Chart
I remember that there is some ambiguity about how to even use this chart, but if I follow the rules at this site, it says boy. For Penny, it said girl, and boy for Olive. This test is 1 for 2 so far.

Red Cabbage Test
This one showed a pretty solid red, which is supposed to mean boy. I never did it with Penny, but it showed boy for Olive too. 0/1.

Carrying high/low
If you're carrying high, it's supposed to be a girl and low for a boy. I'm not really sure I even understand how to tell how I'm carrying. I feel like my bump looks exactly the same–which is probably more a product of my body than the baby, but what do you think? Here are my three pregnancies, about midway through.


Baking Soda Test
You mix a bit of pee with baking soda. If it fizzes, it's a boy. No fizz means girl. Mine had no fizz. Girl. I never did this one before, so no track record.

Apparently if the heartbeat is above 140, it indicates girl and below 140 indicates boy. This baby's heartbeat has been 160. So girl here. Olive was below 140. I think Penny's was right at 140. A 0/1 record?

Husband's weight gain
If hubs gains weight during the pregnancy, that indicates girl. I will have to double check with Josh, but I don't think he's put on any weight lately. Boy. And 0/2 record.

Sweet is supposed to be girl, and sour is supposed to be a boy. I could not stomach sweets during the first trimester, but I couldn't really stomach much. No sour cravings or any cravings really. Maybe cheeseburgers. Or pizza. Just saw another one that says meat and cheese cravings mean boy. So I guess boy here?

Face shape
If mom's face gets round and full, it's supposed to be a girl. I think it's probably too early to tell on this one. I don't think my face looks any different, so boy for now? Also 0/2 record.

Ring test
Suspend a ring on a string over the pregnant belly. If it swings back-and-forth, it's a boy, and if it swings in a circle, it's a girl. Boy. 0/1.

If mom gets acne during pregnancy, it's supposed to be a girl. None so far: boy. Again, 0/2.

Key test
Ask preggo lady to pick up a key. If she picks it up by the thin end, it's a girl and the round end it's a boy. I can't really do this one now because you kind of need the element of surprise.

Dream test
If you dream you're having a boy, you'll have a girl and vice versa. I have dreamed boy all three times. Hmm, interesting. So girl. And 2/2. Most accurate test so far.

Breast test
If your left breast is larger, it's a girl. Right breast larger means boy. My left is larger (but always has been). Girl. 2/2.

Morning sickness
If you have bad nausea and/or vomiting, it's supposed to be a girl. Mine has gotten worse each time, and I never threw up in pregnancy until this one. Girl. 2/2 I guess?

Headaches are supposed to indicate boy. I have had headaches each pregnancy. So boy, but 0/2.

Mother's intuition
A study asked pregnant women with no knowledge of their baby's gender what they thought they were having, and 71% of the time the moms were correct. With Penny, I definitely had strong girl feelings. With Olive, I thought boy. This time, I started out thinking girl, then thought maybe boy, and now I just don't know. Josh is 2/2 so far and he thinks boy this time. Inconclusive.

So final tally on the silly OWT is boy: 8; girl: 5. Hmm, a little more mixed than last time. But interestingly, most of the tests that said boy have been 0/2, and most of the 2/2 tests say girl. What does it all mean? Probably nothing. Any final guesses? We will find out on Monday!

Penny helped me with some of these tests, and I made sure to explain to her before we started that these aren't really scientific ways to find out the gender. I didn't want her to misunderstand what we were doing. She thought the whole thing was hilarious and fascinating. I almost died when she came up to me later in the afternoon with a felt strawberry and told me she was going to do the strawberry test to see what the baby is. She held it up to my belly and declared that the baby is a boy. I guess it is no more ridiculous than most of these!

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Interview with Penny, September 2014.

I was so tickled by the interview I did with Penny last year, I am hoping to do them periodically. I can't stick to any kind of a schedule, so it will be totally random. Here's one from 9/2/14 when she was just over 3 and a half.

What is the meaning of life? I don't know.
What do you want to be when you grow up? In outer space.
What brings you the most happiness? My sister.
When do you feel the most loved? When I hug my sister.
What are you afraid of? Monsters.
If you had one wish, what would you wish for? Cake.
What is the funniest word? Who went to the farmers market.
What is the hardest thing to do? Do a long long long puzzle.
What is the easiest thing to do? Build.
What is the best thing in the world? Going to the zoo.
What is the worst thing in the world? Getting hurt.
What makes you mad? When my sister does something I don't like.
What is the meaning of love? I don't know.
If you had all the money in the world, what would you do with it? Put it in the meter.

There you have it, folks. I love that her wish about cake still stands. I also love that Olive has replaced me as her source of happiness and also her source of anger.

Friday, September 5, 2014

18 Weeks

Weeks pregnant: 18
Baby size: sweet potato
Total weight gain: +9 lb
Total waist gain: +6"

Physical stuff: Feeling pretty good this week, but time is starting to get away from me! This middle part of the pregnancy flies by. I have had some aching in my cervix area. I'm not sure if it's because this is a third pregnancy, so things are achier in general or what. It almost feels like that late in pregnancy feeling that the baby is heavy against the cervix and feels like it might fall out. But the pregnancy seems normal and healthy, and I don't have any signs of preterm labor, so I am guessing this is normal? We had a fun and relaxing long labor day weekend. Josh took a couple extra days off to work on our kitchen, and we had some family visiting, so it was really nice to take it easy and have lots of extra hands around.

Emotional stuff: It has been kind of an emotional roller coaster lately. I never felt like pregnancy hormones really affected my emotions, but I'm starting to wonder lately. Is it me and my hormones, or is it an unusual amount of junk to deal with? I am really not sure. Sorry to be vague, but it's really not that interesting. Excited for fall though, the schedules and routines that seem to come with the season and the peace that I find in those things.

Baby Prep: I keep holding myself back from the consignment sales or baby shopping until we find out what we're having. Just over a week now! I feel like I got something baby-related accomplished, but now I can't remember what... We did get car seat configuration settled. Still thinking about sleeping arrangements. Now also trying to decide on child care stuff for the actual birth. I wasn't so stressed with the home birth because a middle-of-the-night birth meant we didn't have to worry about childcare, but this time, a middle-of-the-night birth would be a childcare nightmare. So there's that. I might ask the midwives if they have any insight there. I really don't want family members hanging around here from out of town waiting for me to give birth, but who else can you call on at 2am?

Birth Prep: I had a prenatal appointment this week. I had sitter troubles, so I had to bring both kids with me, which actually went fine. Except for the fact that they were both napping when we had to leave. They were both having a bit of a rough napping week, so that was painful to wake them. But everything seems good, you know.

Gender stuff: I think I've resigned myself to not taking a stance on what the baby is. I had this big revelation a couple weeks ago that it is totally a boy. But before that I thought girl. So I have no idea. Josh is sure it's a boy. We find out in 10 days!

My little cuties got hair cuts today. Penny is growing out her bangs, so they gave her a sweet little side braid. I really need to learn how to do things like that. And Olive loves to cheese for the camera.

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

16 Weeks

Weeks pregnant: 16
Baby size: avocado
Total weight gain: +9 lb
Total waist gain: +6"

Physical stuff: Worn out, tired, trying to do a lot to get ready for fall/preschool, and I'm just drained. We still have a couple house projects that are dragging out and taking up most of Josh's free time. Penny is really starting to struggle with nap time/quiet time. She still needs a nap but is resistant and can get through the day without one. I've been enforcing quiet time all summer for an hour or so in the afternoons, but it's been a struggle lately to get her to stay in her room for that time. I think it's good for her to play quietly for an hour where we all get some time to ourselves, even if she doesn't actually sleep but we'll see how things evolve.  I've been having more headaches, but I have some good tools to treat them–deep pressure helps, and chiropractic and massage have helped some. I've also been feeling tiny baby flutters occasionally for the last few weeks. They are tiny and fleeting.

Emotional stuff: Also emotionally drained. We've dealt with some life challenges lately that have just been very draining. It's nothing serious, and some of it is not even about us, but it's been a challenging couple of weeks in lots of ways. Josh and I are getting a little vacation in September, just the two of us, and I am really looking forward to that. It will be my first time away from either of my kids.

Baby/Birth/Gender stuff: I haven't had any other appointments or anything. I am anxious to find out what we're having, but I'm fine with waiting until my 20-week appointment. Only 4 weeks to go! Mainly I want to know so that I can organize newborn clothes or purge some girl things and pick up some boy stuff, and there will be plenty of time to do that this fall. Some friends were trying to convince me to go to a recreational ultrasound place, since they can tell the gender at this point there. Aside from the $79 it would cost, I just really don't like to have extra procedures done–I know they are generally considered safe, but I think it's good to only do them if there is a good reason. Finding out gender 4 weeks early isn't a good enough reason for me (no judgment to others!). And for some strange reason, Josh has been telling people I want to get a 3D ultrasound (?!??). I have no idea where he came up with that, but definitely not happening and not even something I have ever considered.

Needed to keep things short and sweet today. Please send some invigoration and energy my way!

Friday, August 15, 2014

Summer Park Photos

When Penny was old enough to sit up, I started taking her out to the park or the backyard to get a few photos with my nice camera. I'm definitely not a skilled photographer, and I kind of let that get in my way and stopped getting the nice camera out as often. We also didn't have access to sprawling green space in Chicago (another excuse!). But I love the pictures I took of Penny as a baby and toddler! I am totally kicking myself for never doing this in France. So when we were heading to this gorgeous local park this week and I managed to get the girls in sweet coordinating outfits, I decided to stop making excuses and bring along my camera. I have a long way to go with photography skills, and it is so much harder to photograph two kids than one, but here are a few favorites.

This Olive sister expression is priceless!