Sunday, January 31, 2016

34 Weeks - with Memes!

Baby is the size of a butternut squash this week. 

How Far Along? 34 weeks - finally starting to feel like it's getting close! Only 3 weeks to full term!
Total Weight Gain: +1 this week. +21 total. I think it might be safe to say I'm going to gain less this time around than the 40+ I gained with each of the girls. I can't gain 19 pounds in 6 weeks, right? Right?! *knock on wood*
Maternity Clothes? You know it. And sweatpants. And very large t-shirts. My favorite is a lovely shade of orange that makes me look like an exceptionally large pumpkin. 

Sleep: Decent. I'm getting sick of sleeping on my sides. And rolling over in the middle of the night is shockingly painful. Between round ligament pain and sciatic pain, it's a slow process, usually punctuated by a lot of moaning and groaning. Haha.

Best Moment This Week: Getting stuff organized
Movement: Still crazy turbo.

I think he flips into a new position every day. I might start doing some "spinning babies" techniques soon to encourage him to get head down and engaged. 
Food Cravings: Pop. All day every day. Very cold and very fizzy. I've been telling people lately that I tried to be careful about my caffeine intake in the first and second trimester, but by now it's time for this baby to get used to it. I certainly don't intend to give it up while breastfeeding!
Food Aversions: Nothing. 
Gender: It's a boy!!!!  
Labor Signs: Nothing new
What I Miss: Having a waist, not being in pain, bending over comfortably (you should see me put my winter boots on!)

What I'm Looking Forward To: Having this baby out and in my arms.
Milestones: I started shaving my left leg with my left hand this week. I just can't reach over my belly with my right hand anymore! Haha. 

I got a couple more incredulous responses this week. Lena's doctor asked how I was feeling, and when I told her "terrible," she said, "You must not have that much farther to go, right?" When I said, "two months," I got that familiar bug-eye look. She quickly back-pedaled and said, "Well you look great!" Lol. 

And at Meijer on Monday, I had a nice chat with a lady by the horse while our kids took their turns. She, too, was surprised that I still have 2 months to go and told me that her sister-in-law is due at the end of March and is half my size. Haha. But she also asked, "Do you, by chance, have a pubic symphasis problem? I saw you walking over here and felt your pain." Apparently, she suffered from the same thing and could tell just by how I walked. She proceeded to tell me that hers lasted for 17 months after her baby was born, but I'm choosing to ignore that . . .

I was reading back on some of my pregnancy entries with Lena and decided that my pain is different this time around. A little TMI . . . . with Lena, I felt like I had fallen on a balance beam or been riding a horse too long. With this baby, I feel like my pubic bone is going to snap in half. It even makes this awful clicking noise sometimes when I walk. And I have a ton of pain in my sacrum/SI joints that I never had with Lena. They click and crunch too. I'm really afraid my whole pelvic girdle is just going to crumble one of these days. I've been trying to wear my maternity belt more often. When I go out in public, I wear it under my clothes. At home, I don't bother. It really highlights how I'm dropping, though:
The difference in 9 days.
The good news is I don't think I'm as big as I was with Lena at this point:
Although, it might just be the difference in shirts and angles. 
I have an ultrasound tomorrow to check on my hematoma. I'm interested to see if they'll give me a size estimate (not that I'll believe it - those things are notoriously inaccurate). And I want to figure out his position. I had an ultrasound with Lucy at 39 weeks and she was so huge and smushed I couldn't really make anything out. I wonder how much I'll be able to see of this one. Stay tuned for pictures!

Saturday, January 30, 2016

The Saturday 7

1. This week was a lot better than last. The pain is definitely still intense, but I'm either learning to handle it better or we were busy enough this week that I was distracted from it. I also had very little depression all week. That is a huge blessing.

2. Ready for the Binky update? It has gone astonishingly well. Sleep has never been an issue, since day one. I definitely didn't anticipate that. The first few days while she was awake were the worst. The first thing she said on Sunday morning was, "I just really miss my Binky." She asked for it constantly while she watched her morning cartoons. And she had a huge meltdown over not bringing it to church. Eventually, she started asking me to make one for her. She majorly over-estimates my mom powers. I told her over and over for days this week that I don't know how to make a Binky, but that didn't stop her from asking repeatedly. The requests slowly started to taper off throughout the week, and by Thursday, she made it all day without mentioning the Binky once! She hasn't said a thing about it since then! Success!!

3. Our 6 year old laptop is finally biting the dust. The battery doesn't charge anymore, so if the computer's not plugged in, it dies immediately. And for the past few days, the battery light on the computer flashes non-stop even when it is plugged in. I imagine that means its days are numbered. I emailed my techy brother for advice and he sent me two links: one for a new battery and one for a great deal on a new laptop. I went with the latter. It hasn't arrived yet, but I can't wait to start using it! One of the things I'm most excited about is having a working letter x key!! Lucy threw a book at the keyboard years ago and the x fell off. I'm thankful it wasn't the E or L, but you'd be surprised how often you use the letter x! I have an elaborate system that has to be used every time I need an x. For instance, in that sentence up there, I wrote that I was "excited." To get that, I typed "eccited," waited for the red squiggles to show up, right clicked and chose the spell-check suggestion of "excited." Then I copied the x, and have been using "ctrl v" to paste it in every time I used it in this paragraph. I can't wait to have a fully functioning keyboard!! Haha. Although I am nervous about all my old pictures and files. The pictures I've taken on my phone for the past two years upload automatically to google, but everything before that is just waiting to be wiped out when this computer finally dies. I wish my stinkin' tech brother hadn't moved to Florida. He didn't respond well to my suggestion to fly home and back up my files for me. #helpless

4. I'm wracking my brain for things to write about, but I'm pretty boring these days. I just flipped through my journal and discovered a pattern. I do something in the morning - grocery shopping, library, Lena's doctor appointment, etc., then I write in big letters "PAIN" and spend the rest of the day sitting down and trying not to move too much. Haha. I've been playing a lot of Words with Friends, watching a lot of Netflix, and even reading a little bit. I made dinner once this week and was super proud of myself. Haha. We went out to eat on Wednesday because Justin had a buy one, get one free offer at Qdoba for his birthday. And Thursday, we had some friends over and got pizza. Other than that, we've been eating a lot of cereal, macaroni, soup, and hot dogs. #nutritiousanddelicious
Please forgive the grammatical error. 
5. Yesterday, I was suddenly overcome with motivation and decided to power through the pain and do some major re-organization. The baby's going to stay in our room for probably the first year, so I've been doing some creative problem solving to make room for his Rock N' Play, glider, and clothes. At first, his clothes all fit in the cute little dresser I bought. But then I went to the Once Upon a Child dollar sale and got a little crazy. So now there's a pile of baby clothes on top of my dresser that I don't have a place for. The result has been a little bit like "If You Give a Mouse a Cookie." I decided to clear some room in our closet for his clothes. But first, I had to get rid of a hanging sweater organizer that holds all Justin's work clothes. Which means I had to find a new home for the work clothes. I decided to bring down the cubby unit in Lucy's room for the work clothes. But first I had to find homes in Lucy's room for all the stuff that had previously been in the cubby unit. That resulted in a complete organizational overhaul of her bedroom. Once I had the cubby emptied, though, I had to make room for it my room. So I took all the DVDs out of our DVD tower and relocated it to the living room. Finally, Justin brought the cubby unit down, put it in the DVD tower's old place and refilled it with our DVDs and his work clothes. Whew! I still need to move two small filing cabinets so I can move the dresser in order to make room for the glider. But I secretly love it. Finding creative organization solutions is one of my favorite things. #nerd

6. Lucy loves her newly organized room. I created a little nook in her closet with a small table, chair, and lamp. Her new favorite thing is sitting up there with her tablet or her homework or her drawing projects. I also made a whole corner devoted to "baby stuff" and "beauty stuff" - her two loves. She has a basket full of dolls, blankets, bottles, baby clothes, etc. and her vanity and make-up. She and Lena have spent hours up there since yesterday. And they've proudly showed it off to Daddy, Grandpa, and Grandma. It nearly killed me to do all that work up there, and I had to lay in my bed for about 3 hours afterward, but it was totally worth it. :-)

7. And to end with, here's this:

It's really happening, people!!!!!!

Sunday, January 24, 2016

33 Weeks

That shirt is not doing me any favors . . .
Baby is the size of a durian this week . . . whatever that is . . .

How Far Along? 33 weeks
Total Weight Gain: +1 this week. +20 total. 
Maternity Clothes? Yep. Getting sick of seeing me in the blue striped shirt yet? Haha.
Sleep: With enough pillows and enough tossing and turning to find just the right position, I'm usually pretty good. Night sweats are back again. 
Best Moment This Week: My sister's mother-in-law being shocked that I have 2 months to go and asking if I was sure it's only 1. Haha. I think these comments are about to get a lot more frequent!
Movement: Tons. He's been all over this week. I usually feel hiccups on my left side, but they switched to my right for a few days, then back to my left. I'm feeling punches or something down low, but still getting kicks in the sides as well. I can't figure the kid out. 
Food Cravings: Still my regular fizzy drinks and cheese, but the sweets cravings have really kicked in this week. Donuts, brownies, cookies, etc. We stopped at the discount grocery store yesterday and I bought all junk food. So much for gaining less this time around . . .
Food Aversions: Nothing. 
Gender: It's a boy!!!!  
Labor Signs: Braxton Hicks, dropping
What I Miss: Being able to do normal activities without worrying about how much it's going to hurt me.
What I'm Looking Forward To: Meeting this baby. Dressing him in all his adorable little clothes. Doing the newborn phase again. 
Milestones: According to the bump, he's between 4 and 5 pounds! He could grow up to an inch this week alone. And he's "starting to coordinate breathing with sucking and swallowing." It kind of boggles my mind that he can breathe, suck, or swallow while immersed in amniotic fluid, but I'm not particularly bright . . .

I wrote in the Saturday 7 about my pain, but I'm going to do a quick recap here as well. It got a lot worse this week. On Monday, it suddenly felt very different. Instead of the general achiness in my back, hips, and pelvis, it became much more intense. The underside of my stomach suddenly hurts, my pelvis feels like it's ripping in half, and my sciatic pain has gotten way worse. It used to just be an ache in my butt. On and off throughout this week, the pain has spread all the way down my leg and wrapped around to the top of my foot. Walking just became a lot more difficult. I'm also starting to get the pain in my inner thighs as well. That's got to be a sign of him dropping, right? I did another comparison pic this week. I think it pretty well explains why I'm hurting so much:
The difference between 29 weeks and 32 weeks. Getting pointy and low . . . and big.
I've been going to the chiropractor once a week. I feel good for a couple hours afterward, but it doesn't seem to help much beyond that. And I kind of think he made it worse this week. A few hours after my appointment, I got this awful spasm in my upper back, near my ribs. I laid in bed for a while and it got a lot better, but seriously. I don't need any more problems.

Yesterday, I wore my maternity belt to Chuck E. Cheese. When we got home, I sat for a couple hours before getting up on my feet again. I think the combination of rest and the belt really did help. I was much more capable of moving last evening. Usually by evening, I'm crippled in my chair.

A couple fun things this week: I got a killer Kohl's deal on plain white onesies, so I stocked up on those. And then I saw an Amazon deal on Moby wraps. I have a hand-me-down Ergo that I used when Lena was a year old. She never liked it, but I'm hoping if I start this baby out young enough, he'll be a fan. That said, it doesn't have the newborn insert, and my research online doesn't show many people using it for their newborns. I'm not sure my back will be able to handle babywearing those first few months anyway, but I've been thinking about getting a stretchy Moby-type wrap to use until he's ready for the Ergo. So when I saw it on Amazon for $14.15 (regularly over $60), I snatched it up! The only ones on sale were the MLB styles, but I found a Tiger's one, so Justin will be happy. And I don't really care what's on it. :-) I can't wait to try it out! (Look at me becoming an attachment parent . . .)

Saturday, January 23, 2016

The Saturday 7

1. Lena was miserably sick the first half of the week. She had a mild fever and a terrible cough. She ended up coughing so hard she puked at least 3 times over 3 days. Almost every time she coughed, she would cry, "Mommmmmyyyy, my cough is still here!" It kept her up at night, it kept her from napping. Mostly she just hung on me whining and begging to watch George. By Wednesday, though, her fever broke, she was much more chipper, and her cough began to disappear. Thank goodness!

2. Because she was still miserable/feverish on Tuesday night, though, I made the call not to go to Lucy's field trip with her as planned on Wednesday. Instead, my fabulous sister Niki got out of work early to meet Lucy and her class at the Children's Museum. Lucy was nervous about riding the bus without me, but ended up saying the bus was her favorite part of the whole trip. Lol. She had lots of fun with Aunt Niki and her friends, and didn't miss me at all. :-)

3. It was probably good that I didn't go on the field trip anyway, because my pain was out of control this week. I know everyone's as sick of hearing about it as I am of feeling it, so I'll try to keep this brief, but it was a huge part of my week. On Monday, I noticed that the pain had changed. The underside of my belly was hurting and my pelvis felt like it was splitting apart. I think the baby might be dropping . . . and it is killing me. By Thursday, I was in such agony I couldn't take it anymore. I ended up bawling in my bed and begging God to help me. I'm not usually a big proponent of the whole "God spoke to me" thing, but every time I prayed, I kept thinking, "My grace is sufficient for you. My power is made perfect in your weakness." And every time, I argued, "But it's not sufficient! It's not helping! I can't get out of this bed. Lena is screaming in her crib and I can't move. I can't make dinner. I can't go grocery shopping. I can hardly walk, God. What good is your grace for me right now?! How is your power being revealed here?!" Here's the thing. I don't have an answer. My pain is not going away. It's hard on my parenting and my marriage and definitely my depression. But I'm going to survive. I'm not literally dying. The baby is doing well. This is temporary, the end is in sight, and hopefully I'll be able to look back and say, "The only way I ever did get out of bed was because of God's grace and power. The only way Justin didn't leave me and my kids didn't hate me was because of God's grace and power." Haha. And I've been clinging to this verse: "I have made you and I will carry you; I will sustain you and I will rescue you." (Isaiah 46:4b)

4. A couple other interesting things from my devotions this week:

Psalm 46:6-7 says,
The nations rage, the kingdoms totter;
    he utters his voice, the earth melts.
The Lord of hosts is with us;
    the God of Jacob is our fortress. 
I've probably read those verses 50 times in my life. I've skimmed right over them and not given them second thought. But this week, something really stood out to me. The same God who melts the earth with his voice is with us. He's on our side. How awesome is that?!

I also read the story of Jesus feeding the 5,000 for probably the 5,000th time this week. (That may be a slight exaggeration. ;-) ) Again, something new stood out to me. Jesus had been preaching and teaching when he heard that John the Baptist had been killed. His first reaction was to withdraw.
13 Now when Jesus heard this, he withdrew from there in a boat to a desolate place by himself.
But the crowds followed him. They were pressing and needy and always wanting more from him. I identify with that a little bit as a mom. Especially this week when Lena was sick. Kids are needy and constant and largely ungrateful. So many times, I reach the point where I say, "I'm done! I need space! I need them to leave me alone!" And I think there definitely are instances in the Bible when Jesus does get his solitary time, but in this story, he doesn't say, "Look people. I just found out my cousin was murdered because of his faithfulness to me. Give me some time to grieve." Instead, the Bible says "he had compassion on them." (Matthew 14:14) He continued to heal their sick, and then went above and beyond and fed them all. I've been praying that God would give me a heart of compassion like that - not even for needy crowds or strangers, but my own beloved kids.

5. And now Lena's birthday recap. She turned 3 today. We're celebrating with Justin's family tomorrow and my family next Sunday, so we just had our own little immediate family celebration today. Justin took her to Speedway to get donuts for breakfast, then she opened her presents.
Stupid cat has to be present wherever there's wrapping paper.
We went to Chuck E. Cheese for lunch and spent 2.5 hours there with about half of the rest of Grand Rapids. It was madness. But Lena was in her glories.
Tonight we made a birthday cake. She insisted on having pink frosting and was amazed that I could turn our can of white frosting into pink with a few drops of red food coloring. Haha. (#mommagic) I let her and Lucy decorate it themselves:
Lena thinks it's Christmas again since she got to open presents, and insisted on wearing her Christmas jammies during her nap. She never changed back into clothes afterward. Haha.
Aunt Libby had come over earlier with play-doh and gummy bears, so we decided to decorate the cake with gummy bears.
It took her a lot of tries to blow out 3 little candles. Haha.
6. And then came the much awaited "Throwing Away of the Binky." We've been telling her for months that when she turns 3, she has to throw her Binky away. Somehow, she got the idea that she had to throw it away before she could have birthday cake, so I rolled with that. After decorating the cake and blowing out the candles, I said, "Ok, let's throw away your Binky and you can eat the cake." Fortunately, I'd gotten some divine inspiration earlier in the day and decided to show Lena the video I took of Lucy throwing away her Binky when she turned 3. In the video, Lucy chucks her Binkies in the trash, smiles at the camera, then runs away crying. Haha. Lena loved it and watched it 5 times in a row. So when it came time tonight, I said, "Do you want to throw it in the trash like Lucy or spit it out of your mouth into the trash?" She hesitated for a few minutes, but finally took it out of her mouth and chucked it in the trash can. She immediately ran into my arms, but didn't cry. We congratulated her, then quickly distracted her with cake. And that was that! I was amazed, but still scared about bedtime.

One of the presents we bought her was her own CD player. Lucy listens to CDs or the radio every night, so I decided Lena would probably like to do the same thing. And I knew it'd come in handy as a distraction device tonight. So she brushed her teeth, gathered up her lovies, and I said, "Daddy put your new CD player in your room. Let's go check it out!" She was all excited about seeing it in her room and putting in a CD. We did our nighttime rocking/singing routine as usual, I turned on her CD and put her to bed, and was almost out the door when she said, "Mommy? When do I get my Binky back?" Haha. So she's a little confused about the permanence of the situation. I just tried to be honest while acting like it wasn't a big deal. I said, "You're not going to get it back. It's all gone. But you don't need it anymore. You're a big girl. You'll be fine. Go to sleep!" She called me back in her room once saying, "I can't sleep!" but I told her to keep trying and she let it drop. She was asleep within minutes!!!! I seriously never expected it to go so smoothly. But I'm also not counting ourselves as totally out of the woods yet. We had a busy day today. I let her stay up late. She was very tired. We'll see if she sleeps all night. And nap time tomorrow will be the true test. I know it's not over yet . . .

7. Well, this is my second overly-long post of the day, so I'll leave it at that. Have a great week, y'all!

Lena: 3 Years

My Lena is 3 years old today. Does that make her a pre-schooler instead of a toddler? Either way, it seems old and kind of breaks my heart. Haha. She is wonderful and full of personality and this entry will never do her justice.

The Stats
At her 3 yr. well-child appointment, she weighed 28 lbs (22%) and was 3' tall (26%). Shrimpy, but growing at her own rate!

She's wearing 2T shirts with a few 3T mixed in here and there. She pretty much only wears 2T jeans, and some of those are too big still. Basically, she's a shrimp. Haha.

I still don't think she has all her 2 year molars, but that doesn't surprise me. We're late maturers with the teeth around here.

She has a couple weird food sensitivities. Oranges and peas give her a blistery diaper rash. Pineapple makes her mouth itch. All very common, and she'll likely outgrow them.

The Fun Stuff

  • She can count to 20, although she consistently skips 13 and 15. 
  • She knows all her shapes (thanks to Pa Grape's Shapes)
  • She still isn't real interested in identifying letters. She can do L, M, O, and sometimes E and A. I really need to work harder on that with her . . .
  • She knows all her colors. 
  • She knows her full name and can spell "Lena." (She can also spell "Lucy.")
  • She's currently obsessed with Curious George. She'd watch it all day every day if I let her. And occasionally, something will remind her of an episode she's seen. She'll say, "On George, the man with the yellow hat says . . ." and recap half the episode for me. Haha. 
  • She's very good with technology. She can work my phone, Kindle, her LeapPad, and has even figured out how to turn on the TV, get to Netflix, get to Curious George, and turn it on. 
  • She loves to help me with everything - laundry, dishes, cooking, etc.
  • She is my constant companion. She very rarely leaves my side, and prefers to be touching me if possible. Haha. Sometimes it drives me a little crazy, but she's also the sweetest, most affectionate kid ever. She loves to put her little hand on my face and say, "I love you, Mommy." She's constantly telling me how much she loves me and constantly snuggling with me. I love it.
  • She tends to be shy, although I think it's more of a learned habit than is truly innate in her. She sees Lucy hide her face anytime someone tries to talk to her, so she thinks that's what you're supposed to do. If Lucy's not around, Lena's usually much more willing to respond to people. Although the separation anxiety is real, too. She does not like to be separated from me - unless she's with Daddy or Grandma. 
  • She loves to read. She adores going to the library and picking out a huge pile of books, then sitting at home and reading through all of them. She soaks them up and pays attention and then re-reads them to herself later. 
  • She's always listening. She asks me often what song lyrics mean when we're in the car and I'm not even paying attention to the radio. When I pray at night, she'll sometimes ask me what I meant. For instance, I remember one time praying for Grandpa VanderKodde to travel safely to Florida. When I was done praying, she said, "What does travel mean?" I love it.
  • Speaking of praying, she prays so adorably. She folds her little hands and says, "Jesus, thank you for this day, thank you for this food, thank you for everything you do for us. Dear Jesus, amen." 
  • She's still an early riser. She goes right to sleep at 8:00 every night, and is up between 6 and 7 every morning. Usually closer to 6. Haha. She takes a two hour nap every afternoon. I've thought about cutting out the nap to see if she'd sleep longer at night, but I cherish those two hours during the day too much. 
  • I've given up on potty training. She is 100% ready, but 100% unwilling. Haha. She's terrified of her potty chair. So I took her to Meijer and told her she could pick out one of those rings that goes in the toilet. They had all her favorite characters, but she stood in the aisle crying, "Don't wanna go potty on the toilet!" I finally gave up and told her she didn't have to, but she continued to cry for the next 15 minutes, "I don't wanna go potty!" Somehow, she is traumatized by the idea of it. I'm hoping she'll be one of those kids that will decide on her own that she's ready to be potty trained and just do it. If that hasn't happened by this summer, once the baby is on a schedule, and breastfeeding is under control, we'll get serious. (How many times have I said that? Lol.)
  • Her recent love is puzzles. She usually asks me to help her, but once I get her started, she can do the 16 or 24 piece board puzzles by herself. 
  • She adores Lucy and loves to do whatever Lucy is doing. They actually play really well together usually. Sometimes they'll go upstairs and play for hours! Their new obsession is playing with their Baby Alive dolls. Lena loves feeding hers and changing its diaper and putting it to bed by singing and rocking. 
  • We have a very specific bed time routine. She only wants me to put her to bed. We have to rock in the rocking chair, read one book, then sing the same 5 songs. And her new thing is saying, "You just rock me for a while with no singing." She snuggles up against my chest and we rock in the quiet darkness. I'm planning on moving the rocker down into my room to feed the baby in the middle of the night, and I'm already sad about losing that time with Lena. We might have to do her routine in my room before going up to bed. 
  • She is hilarious and goofy and full of silliness. I often hear a crash from the other room followed by Lena shouting, "I'm ok!" Lol. She calls me "big fat momma with a baby in your belly." Haha. She tells Justin, "I like you, but I not like your beard. You need shave." 
  • She's obsessed with her Ellies [lovies] and Binky. The Binky is going in the trash tonight and I am majorly dreading it. It's definitely time. It's ridiculous for her to have it as much as she does, but she loves it so much and I'm sad to take it away from her. (I never would've dreamed I'd be such a pushover as a parent!!) It also really seems to take away the last of her baby-ness. :-( 
  • She does still sleep in the crib. She's only tried to climb out once, fell, and hasn't tried again. I'm all about keeping her contained as long as I can - especially since she wakes up so early. 
  • She loves to color and glue and cut and do glitter glue and stickers and play-doh. 
I could go on and on, but I think that's a decent representation of her. We love her so much and are so grateful God put her in our family!!

Sunday, January 17, 2016

32 Weeks

My assistants have permanently deserted me.

Baby is the size of a squash this week!

How Far Along? 32 weeks
Total Weight Gain: +2 this week. +19 total. (I was up 24 lbs by this point with Lena. Here's hoping for less overall this time!) Measured my belly again yesterday: 38". Up half an inch in two weeks. I would've guessed more . . .
Maternity Clothes? Obviously.
Sleep: Pretty good for this stage in the game. 
Best Moment This Week: Getting some baby clothes steals at Once Upon a Child!
Movement: Lots. Especially at night. And he gets the hiccups like 5 times a day.
Food Cravings: Fizzy drinks, cinnamon life cereal, cheese
Food Aversions: Nothing. 
Gender: It's a boy!!!!  
Labor Signs: Braxton Hicks every time I move. 
What I Miss: Having a variety of clothing options. I'm getting a little sick of my 3 pairs of jeans and 3 shirts that cover my belly. Haha.
What I'm Looking Forward To: The girls meeting the baby.  
Milestones: I got my first incredulous response from someone who couldn't believe I have 2 months to go! Haha.

I had a doctor appointment on Friday. I didn't actually see my doctor, just a nurse practitioner. But she felt around and figured out his position for me. Head on my left hip bone, butt on my upper right side. More diagonal than transverse, but at least his head is going the right direction! Haha. And maybe the fact that it's wedged against my hipbone explains some of the sciatic pain I've been having on my left side?

I also got my tdap shot on Friday. The shot itself just felt like the nurse pinched me, but my arm has been killing me since then! I feel like there should be a big bruise to show for all my pain. Haha. And then every time I think about how much my dumb arm hurts from a little shot, I start to worry a little bit about giving birth in a few weeks. Ha.

My general pain/depression was pretty bad this week. The two definitely correlate. I get depressed about how much pain I'm in and how much worse it's going to get over the next 8 weeks. I feel like a major failure because my house is a disaster, I've pretty much given up on cooking, and my girls watch so much TV. As long as I'm sitting down, I'm ok. But if I'm on my feet for more than 10 minutes, I'm in agony. My sciatic nerve hasn't stopped hurting all week. It's a constant pain, punctuated by periods of stabbing pain. My sacrum/SI joints start to hurt if I'm moving at all. And the pelvic pain gets worse the longer I'm on my feet - especially if I ever carry Lena. I'm really quite a barrel of fun.

Justin has two cousins that were pregnant at the same time as me. B was due in January, K was due in February, and then I'm due in March. B had her baby 2 weeks early in December. K had her baby 3 weeks early this week (January). So that means I'll have mine in February, right? 2 weeks early would be ok! As long as he isn't born on Leap Day. I'd like to avoid that . . .

March seems so far away. Although, when I made my next doctor's appointment this week, the receptionist said, "We need to see you in 2 weeks. You'll be 34 weeks then." 34 weeks is sounding pretty close!! When do the weekly appointments start? 36 weeks?

The Saturday 7

1. I wasn't even going to write a post this week because I spent all week depressed and in pain and don't have anything too uplifting to say, but my brother specifically requested an update, so here you have it.

2. Since I've been sitting around so much, I've taken up playing Words with Friends again. I need more competition, though. I'm out of practice and not as good as I used to be, so now's your chance to beat me! ;-)

3. Lena's birthday is in 6 days and her binky is going in the trash. It is going to be incredibly traumatic and I'm very much dreading it. Pray for me.

4. We had some weird weather this week. On Monday night, we got a bunch of snow and most of the area schools were closed on Tuesday. Of course, Lucy only has school MWF, so she didn't get a snow day. Wednesday was frigidly cold and when my alarm went off at 6:45, I briefly considered letting Lucy have a snow day of my making just so I wouldn't have to get out of my warm bed and haul her to school in the cold. I didn't follow through, though. If I start that now, she'll beg me every day to let her skip. And then Friday it was 40* and rainy all day. Weird. It's supposed to be wretchedly cold again next week, so here's hoping for Lucy's first real snow day and an excuse to stay home in the warm house. Winter is the bane of my existence . . .

5. Lena came down with a cold this week. She has a nasty, rattly cough and an on again off again fever. My parents both just got over terrible coughs so I'm not sure if Lena just now caught what they had or if we're starting something new. She pulled a Lucy last night and an hour after we put her to bed, I heard her crying for me. I went upstairs and said, "What's wrong?" She responded, "Can you clean me off?" Haha. She had coughed so hard she made herself puke. Poor kid. I'm hoping we're getting all our sickness out of the way now before the baby comes.

6. Last night, Justin and I went on a double date with my cousin and her husband to Trini's. It was great to have adult conversation . . . even if we talked about our kids the whole time. And the food was marvelous as usual. I'm pretty sure I've reached the "fat storing" stage of pregnancy, because I can suddenly pack away the food. I ate almost my whole burrito, plus chips and salsa, and a lot of Cherry Coke (my one beef with Trini's is their lack of Dr Pepper). On the way home, we stopped at Family Fare to pick up a gallon of milk . . . and somehow ended up with ice cream too. I ate half a pint of Ben and Jerry's in bed when we got home. Lol.

On Friday, I had a doctor appointment at 11 and stopped at my mom's work (Once Upon a Child) afterward. It was perfect timing because my mom said, "Have you had lunch yet? Let's go out." I get my love of restaurants from her. Haha. We went to TGI Friday's and I scarfed down a huuuuge chicken sandwich full of bacon and mayonnaise and crispy onion straws. I could hardly even fit my mouth over the thing, but I managed to eat it all. And fries. And copious amounts of Dr Pepper. Bring on the weight gain!

7. Justin and I discovered a new season of Parks and Recreation on Netflix this week. I love Leslie Knope. Oh, and her love of waffles reminds me . . . I found this "recipe" online for "waffins." Instead of using regular waffle mix, you mix up muffin batter and pour it in the waffle maker. I just bought cheap blueberry muffin mix and we had blueberry waffins. They were amazing.

Sunday, January 10, 2016

31 Weeks

I couldn't decide which picture to share this week, so here are all 3 that we took. I apparently used a different filter on the last one than the first two . . .
And some growth photos:
29 weeks to 31 weeks. Getting pointy!
Baby is the size of a pineapple this week!

How Far Along? 31 weeks
Total Weight Gain: Nothing this week! +17 total.
Maternity Clothes? Yep. I'm down to just a few shirts. Get used to seeing the same ones over and over.
Sleep: It takes me forever to fall asleep. And if I get up in the middle of the night, it takes forever to fall back asleep. But once I'm out, I could sleep forever.
Best Moment This Week: Getting some stuff done!
Movement: All the time. Quite painful at times. Lots of movement on both of my sides (which makes me think he's transverse). 
Food Cravings: Pop, ice cream, cookies, cheese, milk, cinnamon life cereal
Food Aversions: Nothing. 
Gender: It's a boy!!!!  
Labor Signs: Braxton Hicks every time I move. 
What I Miss: Being pain-free. Sleeping on my back/stomach.
What I'm Looking Forward To: Giving birth. I was fortunate to have easy births with the girls and am looking forward to doing it again. Of course I'm nervous that the epidural won't work or something will go catastrophically wrong, but for the most part, I'm excited to do it again. 
Milestones: Down to single digit weeks to go!

I finally got some motivation this week. I washed all the baby's clothes and organized them in his dresser. I organized all the burp cloths, receiving blankets, bibs, etc. Then I sorted through my bins of supplies. I was actually surprised by how much I still need. I figured I had lots of plain white onesies and socks from the girls. I found 4 white onesies and 3 pairs of socks. I do have a ton of cute boyish onesies, so I'm not too concerned. I just like layering with plain white ones. Also, I knew I had tons of swaddle blankets, but I underestimated how pink they all are. Haha. I did buy some crib sheets, a crib mattress pad, lanolin, baby book, lovey, and gripe water this week. I need to see how many milk storage bags I have stashed. And I need to do more research on getting a free pump through our health insurance. I signed up for free samples of Enfamil, Similac, and Gerber formulas. Hopefully one of them will arrive before March so I have backup in case breastfeeding goes horribly wrong. All in all, I'm starting to feel more prepared and ready. Even though I have 9 more excruciating weeks to go . . .

And now the pain update. I write this as a reminder for myself more than anything. Next time I start to get baby fever, I need to read this: My hips, sciatic nerve, pelvic girdle, and lower back hurt all the time. I swear I could feel my belly growing this week. I don't know if it's just gas or the baby stretching or my skin stretching, but I constantly feel over-full and like I'm pushing my stomach out as hard as I can. It really hurts and is driving me crazy. And as impossible as it seems, I know I'm only going to get bigger. Sometimes I look in the mirror and think, "I'm not that huge. Maybe it won't be as bad this time around." But then I remember how much I grew in the last 10 weeks with Lena:
Lord, have mercy.

Saturday, January 9, 2016

The Saturday 7

1. This week, I read The Lake House by Kate Morton. It was really good - a very complicated, multi-layered mystery that left me guessing. By the end, when I figured out what happened, I wanted to go back and re-read it in light of the reveal. I've read one other book by Morton that left me feeling the same way. I looked up some of her other books, though, and was a little disappointed to see that they're all the same. Old people remembering something tragic that happened in the past and someone younger putting together the pieces to solve the mystery. She has like 10 books with the same storyline. Time to branch out, Kate. 

2. I mentioned last week that I was going to pick a verse to pray over each of the girls this year. Here's what I ended up with.

Lucy: "With my whole heart I seek you; let me not wander from your commandments!" (Psalm 119:10)

Lena: "O God, from my youth you have taught me, and I still proclaim your wondrous deeds." (Psalm 71:17)

They're both on the same track - I pray that God will instill His word/a desire for a relationship with Him in their hearts while they're young, and that they'll never wander from it. 

3. Since Lucy refused to say "Thank you" for her presents at Christmas, I made her write thank you notes this week. It was excruciating for both of us. 
It took her f.o.r.e.v.e.r, and she whined the entire time. She kept saying, "This is the worst thing ever! Why do I have to do this?!" So at least I had lots of opportunities to tell her, "If you would've said thank you to people, you wouldn't have to do this. But you chose not to, so now you have to do it the long way." Hopefully she learned her lesson. 

4. I'm getting good at scrolling past anything remotely political on facebook without reading it. All the memes make me so angry, but I hate to totally hide the people who post them (because they post other stuff too that I like to see!). I figure we've got a solid 10 months of this still, so I either have to abandon facebook altogether or learn to deal with the politics. And like I'm ever going to leave facebook . . .

5. Guess what I finally did yesterday? Called the chiropractor! I noticed there's an office literally a mile down the street from my house, so I looked it up online and called to see if they were accepting new patients. The chiropractor himself answered the phone and said, "I usually take new patients on Fridays at 9:30." It was 9:40 when I called, but he said he didn't have anyone new that day and asked if I could go in right then. I wasn't expecting to get in so quickly! Chiropractors crack me up (pun intended). They all have their funny terminology and revolutionary techniques. This guy kept talking about making my pelvic girdle into a nest for the baby. Haha. Whatever floats your boat, dude. Just help me with my pain! He cracked me like crazy - back, hips, neck, did some weird pulling on my arms and legs, let me lay on an automatic massage table for a while, and told me to come back next week to do it again. He said his revolutionary technique will create a nest environment and encourage the baby to go head down, while aligning my bones to prepare them for labor. Sounds good to me! The baby is definitely not head down yet (pretty sure he's transverse), so I'm all for encouraging that! I'm still in lots of pain today, but I know these things take time. And I know it's not going to eliminate my pain altogether. Mostly, I'm just hoping to keep my body aligned so that I can function once this baby is finally out of me. I was in so much agony for months after Lena was born. I'd like to avoid that this time around. 

6. Last night, Justin and I went on a hot date to Logan's and Wal-Mart. I've been craving Logan's for weeks. Of course, I could only eat about three bites and then I was painfully full. Justin ate rolls, steak, fries, salad, and some of my entree. When we left, he couldn't stop talking about how full he was. I said, "Welcome to my world. That is how I feel all the time." Haha. We took advantage of being kid-free (thanks, Mom!) to stop at Wal-Mart. He looked at fishing stuff and I stocked up on some last minute baby essentials. Crib sheets, a baby book, lanolin, etc. 9 weeks to go and I'm finally starting to get things ready. #thirdchild

7. Some funny stories from this week:

Lucy asked me how the baby could breathe inside me, so we had a talk about umbilical cords and how babies are attached to their moms. I told her that she and Lena used to be attached to me, too, and explained how that relates to their belly buttons. Lena said, "I was stuck to you?" When I said yes, she said, "I was stuck to Lucy too?" I told her no, that they were in my belly at different times, but she continued, saying, "Oh, Lucy was in your front and I was in your back?" Haha. So glad that's now how it works!

Lena also told me this week that she's the cutest girl in the world. Fortunately, Lucy was at school, because there would've been a heated argument about that one. #selfconfidence 
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