Tuesday, November 24, 2009

37 weeks = FULL TERM = a watermelon!!

Praise God!  We have made it to full term :o)  I feel so insanely blessed for so many reasons - no complications at all during this pregnancy, Gummy Bear has looked great, my hubby has been super understanding and wonderful through this pregnancy and I never had to miss one day of work!  I've tried to keep my complaints to a minimum because I am very grateful but it has been hard recently.. talk about discomfort and pain and lack of sleep and anxiety and hormones and fears and okay, that's enough!  It's so strange to think that in 3 weeks Gabrielle will likely be here, in my arms and I am sure she will be the most beautiful baby girl anyone has ever seen ;o)  I do still have some things to get done before she arrives but technically, because I am full term, my labor could begin at any time and she would be just fine.  Hopefully I can get some of the last minute stuff done this weekend.

Is Thanksgiving really this Thursday, one day away??  Thanksgiving.. really.. that just seems completely insane to me.  I am definitely looking forward to the holiday - getting to spend time with family and friends, enjoying some time off work and hopefully getting some cute family photos of Steven, Gav, me and the belly :o)  I can't say I'm real excited about the Thanksgiving meal - I don't like turkey, stuffing, sweet potatoes or gravy - I usually end up eating pickles, corn and rolls.  I am however very very excited about apple pie - hopefully one of the 3 houses we are going to for a holiday meal will have an apple pie - if not I may just have to bake one myself ;o)

37 week quiz:
How far along: 37 weeks 1 day 
Weight gain: +30 lbs 
Stretch marks: yes - as I said before there is no hiding them in the photos below so I am just trying to adjust to them. 
Any new baby items: one adoptive family I work with sent me an adorable outfit and a toy for baby Gabrielle - so sweet!!  Also, I had a CPR training for the interim care families I work with and they surprised me with a mini baby shower - so thoughtful!!  We received some adorable outfits, a great book, some beautiful hand-made blankets, diapers and wipes.  One of the interim care moms even made me an amazing cake - and it was delicious!!  I didn't get any photos of anything because I didn't have my camera since it was a surprise, but hopefully I can get some photos from the families because I know some of them did take photos.  It's so incredible to be surrounded by such caring, selfless, strong Christians even through my work. 
Any new maternity items: nope.. probably won't get anything new at this point.
Sleep: I've discovered a trick - when I need to roll over to my right side I grab on to the edge of the bed and pull, it really makes rolling over so much easier [but makes me feel huge!] :o)  I haven't gotten a lot of sleep lately, mainly because I can't get comfortable in bed and because my head has been spinning a lot.  My potty trips have decreased lately but I doubt that will last. 
Movement: yes, she is still moving but I can certainly tell she's running out of room.. I cannot wait to see those little feet that have been kicking me ;o)
Gender: if Gummy Bear is a boy then, like I said before, he's really going to hate his room, his name and all of his clothes!
Belly button in or out: out.
Labor signs: nope.
Best moment of the week: definitely making it to the full term marker and knowing that Gabrielle is ready for the outside world!!!
What I'm looking forward to: Thanksgiving with family and friends, celebrating my niece's 12th birthday, wrapping up our Christmas shopping, and of course meeting baby Gabrielle and seeing Gavin meet his baby "sisser" :o)
What I miss: feeling "normal" - sleeping on my belly - sleeping comfortably - wine - all the stuff I've listed for the past 20 weeks or so ;o)
Weekly wisdom: It's the small stuff..
Milestones: Congratulations — your baby is full term! This means that if your baby arrives now, his lungs should be fully mature and ready to adjust to life outside the womb, even though your due date is still three weeks away.  Your baby weighs 6 1/3 pounds and measures a bit over 19 inches.


Thursday, November 19, 2009

36 week DR visit recap!

Urine: I don't know.. I forgot to ask and she didn't tell me - I guess it was normal.
Blood pressure: 107/68 
Weight: I am up 1 pound since my last visit.. much better than 4 pounds.. that puts my total weight gain at exactly 30 pounds.
Heart beat: Gabrielle's heart was beating at 165 bpm today!  The midwife joked that she got her excited poking around at her head and her tushy! 
Questions: I asked about having my cervix checked.. not that I wanted it checked at all.. I was just wondering when they will start doing that or if they will even check it at all before I am in labor.  She said it really depends on what provider you see, some don't check until 39 weeks, some check starting at 36 weeks.  I am not too worried about getting checked - I could be 2 cm. dilated and not deliver for another 2 weeks so there's really no point in knowing!
Midwife: today we saw Tiffany - she was a little different but very very nice.. we joked about having big ankles and not being able to buy pretty anklets in the store because they never fit.  She was actually the midwife that delivered one of my client's a couple of weeks ago. (well my client's baby, not my client!)
Belly measurement: my belly measured at 37 weeks today (yikes, a week ahead!) - Tiffany said that Gummy Bear is all stretched out in my tummy and she is still definitely head down!
Next appointment: my appointments are supposed to be scheduled every week from now until I deliver.. they don't' have any openings next week because they are off on Thursday and Friday so my next appointment isn't until December 1, 2009 at 8:50 a.m.  Then I have one on December 9, 2009 at 4:10 p.m. and one scheduled for December 16, 2009 at 11:30 a.m.  (hopefully I don't need this last one!)

I am trying to keep up with working until the very last possible second but it's not as easy as I thought it would be.  My job isn't very phsycially demanding so I really never thought it would get tough but I was wrong.  The emotional and stressful piece of my job has been very hard to handle and I'm always so tired so I feel like my focus hasn't been where it should be lately.. I really just want to crawl up on my couch and take a nap.  There's definitley a disadvantage to having a couch in your office and being 36 weeks pregnant!  My last day at work will be December 11, 2009 - unless I deliver before then!  That's only 13 more working days :o)

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

gifts :o)

My dear friend Katie from high school sent me an awesome Baby's First Year calendar and a sweet card!  I cannot wait to start using the calendar and keeping track of all her special milestones and events.  Thanks Katie, that was very thoughtful!!

Another high school friend Lindsay and her hubby Matt sent us the Love Bug blanket from our registry!  I cannot wait to wash the blanket and see Gabrielle all wrapped up in it - it's so soft :o)  Thank you Brown family!!!

I have continued to be amazed by people's generosity throughout this pregnancy - and these gifts are just another testimate that no act of kindness, no matter how big or small, is ever wasted.  These will be gifts that I will treasure and so will Gabrielle, mainly because they came from caring friends who, out of the kindness of their hearts, decided just to do something nice for us.. so thank you thank you thank you!!  And another thank you to Jil who sent us our Love Bug frame that I absolutely love!  Another gift that was not expected but was such a blessing and will continue to be for me and my family.

36 weeks = almost full term!!

HAHAHA, I love this cartoon!!!  I am so excited to meet her but obviously I don't want her to leave before she is ready.  I haven't been feeling too bad lately - just very tired and some mild back pain.  These cramps/contractions have been driving me nuts but I guess they're just preparing me for "the real deal" - oh boy!  If I'm being honest with myself, and with all of you, I am completely terrified of labor and delivery.  I know I know, I've done it before, what's there to be scared of...  a lot!!  I am planning to have my hubby there with me the entire time - he was amazing during Gav's birth.  My momma and mother-in-law will also hopefully be there, they were both there for Gav's birth as well.  My labor and delivery with Gav was fairly smooth (except for when I was about 2.5 seconds away from being wheeled down for an emergency c-section) but I just get nervous thinking about all the things that could go wrong.  But ya know, there's no turning back now - she's coming out and I've just got to do my best to prepare for it!

Steven and I went to a Learning to Breastfeed class on Saturday.. yes, I did drag my hubby along ;o)  My mom and my niece Shayna watched Gav while we went.  The class was helpful, to an extent, but I am still a little uncomforatble/scared about the idea of trying to nurse again.  I am just going to try my very best and give it all I've got and pray it turns out to be nothing like my nursing experience with Gavin.  After we came back from the class my momma took me to Babies.R.Us for a baby shopping spree - SO AWESOME - THANK YOU MOM and AUNT CONNIE!!!!  Gabrielle got so much stuff and it was fun shopping with my momma and my niece - it actually made me think.. [I wonder if in 27 years or so I will be shopping with Gabrielle for her little baby-to-be].. yikes, what a crazy thought!  Here are some of the great things we got:

 I bought the crib set and my mom and aunt bought the new mattress and the mobile!!

these are just some shots of the pretty details on the blanket!

Gabrielle's hamper and Gav aka Pudding Face being the proud big brother!

more goodies from my mom and aunt!

the first dress bought for her - from my mom and aunt!  

an adorable holiday outfit - again, from my mom and aunt!

Gabrielle's night light
I got this diaper bag on clearance for $30 (that's 50% off the regular price!!)

an adorable dress I found at Tar.get!

I had to return an outfit to Carter's that we already had and got as a gift so I got these two adorable outfits - the blue one piece was only $5!  The jeans above are her first pair of jeans :o)

THANK YOU AGAIN Mom and Aunt Connie!!  Now I feel almost ready for her to arrive.  I still have a lot to get done on my To-Do list and time is just flying by :o)

36 weeks quiz:
How far along: 36 weeks 1 day!!
Weight gain: I got on my scale today and it says that I'm still up 28 pounds..
Stretch marks: yes, they are definitley obvious in the photos below so I won't even try to hide them :o)
Any new baby items: see all the wonderful photos above!!!
Any new maternity items: nope.. although I did get new slippers and some toiletries for my hospital time (do they count?!)
Sleep: fairly decent lately, although I can never get enough - it is still tough to get comfortable but once I find 'the spot' I am usually out fairly quickly; potty trips are still about 3 times a night
Movement: she is still moving a lot but not as much as she use to.. I guess she's running out of room in there.. they say that happens ;o)
Food cravings: ice chips and Panera Bread
Gender: seriously, if Gummy Bear comes out a boy we are in deep deep deep 'lots of pink' trouble!!
Belly button in or out: it's basically the whole way out.. weird!!
Labor signs: nope.
What I miss: being able to sit comfortably at my desk, or anywhere actually!  putting on my socks and shoes, shaving my legs, putting on my pants - these are all getting harder by the day!  I also miss my old clothes and all my comfy fall/winter sweaters - I really hope I can drop this extra weight..
Best moment of the week: definitley my shopping trip to Babies.R.Us with my mom and niece - I'm so lucky!
What I'm looking forward to: my doctor appointment on Thursday, the weekend and Thanksgiving next week (a 3 day work week!!)  oh wait, I'm on call next week.. bummer!
Weekly wisdom: "Be yourself because everybody else is already taken."

Milestones: Your baby is still packing on the pounds — at the rate of about an ounce a day. She now weighs almost 6 pounds, like a crenshaw melon and is more than 18 1/2 inches long. She's shedding most of the downy covering of hair that covered her body as well as the vernix caseosa, the waxy substance that covered and protected her skin during her nine-month amniotic bath. Your baby swallows both of these substances, along with other secretions, resulting in a blackish mixture, called meconium, will form the contents of her first bowel movement.


Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Weekly wisdom

My weekly wisdom last night was super super lame.. I was incredibly tired and my brain power was about a -50 so I've thought of some better "wisdom" for you!

Be thankful that you don’t already have
everything you desire.
If you did, what would there be
to look forward to?

Be thankful when you don’t know something,
for it gives you the opportunity to learn.

Be thankful for the difficult times.
During those times you grow.

Be thankful for your limitations,
Because they give you opportunities for improvement.

Be thankful for each new challenge,
Because it will build your strength and character.

Be thankful for your mistakes,
They will teach you valuable lessons.

Be thankful when you’re tired and weary,
Because it means you’ve made an effort.

It’s easy to be thankful for the good things.
A life of rich fulfillment comes to those
who are also thankful for the setbacks.

Gratitude can turn a negative into a positive.
Find a way to be thankful for your troubles,
and they will become your blessings.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

35 weeks = honeydew melon!


I am completely and totally exhausted right now - physically and emotionally - so this post will be very boring, I'm sorry!!  I've been cramping and contracting a lot more lately but I still don't really think they're anything serious.  I am so afraid this little lady is going to come out like a big chubby meatball - I had a dream she was born with teeth and weighed 18 pounds - yikes!!!  I will be full term in 2 weeks :o)  It's so strange to think that even if I do make it to 40 weeks she will be here in my arms in no more than 5 weeks (I'm fairly certain they will induce me before I get too far past my due date.)  I cannot wait to meet her and give her a big huge kiss!!!

35 week quiz:
How far along: 35 weeks 1 day
Weight gain: gulp.. +29 pounds.. gross, yuck, blah, ewww.
Stretch marks: yep - they are appearing on my lower tummy and my hips.
Any new baby items: not since my last post - unless you want to count a travel pack of wipes ;o)
Any new maternity items: no, I'm dying to buy a nice comfy sweater but am also trying to remember that I only have 5 or less weeks to go..
Sleep: hard to get comfortable but once I fall asleep I'm out - until I need to go potty - which has been about 3 to 4 times a night - I've definitely noticed we've gone through a lot more toilet paper the past couple of months!
Movement: yes, she is still moving like crazy - she moves most when I'm driving, in the evenings and at bedtime.
Gender: my little lady!!
Labor signs: not any "true" labor signs - lots and lots of cramping and braxton hicks contractions though
Belly button in or out: almost completely out.
Food cravings: chocolate.
What I miss: right now I just miss my pre-pregnancy body (never thought I'd say that!) and my old clothes - I just miss being comfortable..
What I'm looking forward to: our Learning to Breastfeed class on Saturday, although I am still super super nervous about breastfeeding I am eager to learn more; we are also going to a Hershey Bears game on Saturday which should be tons of fun!!
Weekly wisdom: "Be kind, rewind." - first thing that came to my mind - I'm so ready for bed - maybe I'll come back tomorrow with some better "wisdom" ;o)
Milestones: Congratulations! You’re now carrying nearly 6 lbs of baby not counting their amniotic fluid, the umbilical cord, or the placenta itself. We’re impressed because that’s a LOT of work non-stop. Are you feeling proud of yourself yet? Well, get to it—you’ve done an amazing job! At this point, your little grower is almost busting out of the womb size-wise, which make their restricted attempts to move much more challenging. Of course, your stubborn little stinker is still trying to move around as if they weren’t in a cramped space. And the accumulating baby fat deposits are starting to level off so your little butter ball will be padded and warm when they head out of their super snug little home.


Monday, November 9, 2009

35 - 35

Too cool - today I am 35 weeks pregnant - 35 days until my due date!!  That makes me smile :o)  We had a pretty productive weekend which feels great - but I still have a lengthy to do/to buy list.  I thought I'd post the list here and cross things out as they are completed.  I am going to add the items we completed this weekend just so I feel a little peace that we're getting things done!  If anyone wants to help with the list let me know (especially #5 and #13) ;o)

1. Unpack and clean car seat
2. Go through and organize Gav's downstairs toys
3. Set up pack-n-play downstairs
4. Purchase a light for the living room
5. Clean entire house from floor to ceiling
6. Catch up on photos for Gabrielle's album
7. Start writing in her baby book
8. Charge all the camera batteries
9. Empty all the memory cards
10. Work on birth plan
11. Arrange playlists on iPod for labor and delivery
12. Wash clothes, bedding, whatever else needs washed
13. Bath and groom the dogs
14. Make list of hospital bag items
              - purchase any items needed for hospital bag
              - pack my hospital bag
              - pack Steven's hospital bag
              - pack Gabrielle's hospital bag
              - pack big brother's bag
15. Attend Learning to Breastfeed class on Saturday
16. Finish Christmas shopping
17. Purchase last minute items for Gabrielle
18. Buy video tapes
19. Move Gav's car seat and install car seat bases
20. Clean my bedroom and make room for bassinet
21. Move bassinet into my bedroom

I will continue to add to and cross off items - I know this isn't a fun post for everyone but it certainly helps me to stay organized and focused!!

Happy Monday :o)

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

34 week DR visit recap, photos & videos!!

I've had a very productive day but my body is definitley feeling it now!  I got some Christmas shopping done today :o) and some cleaning/organzing done around the house - now it's time to relax and blog!  The photos below are ones I took tonight of Gabrielle's new outfits and her new bouncy seat - too cute!!

I even put this together all by myself!!

all the Carter's tags make me laugh - had she been a boy her name would have most likely been Carter!

this will likely be her 'coming home' outfit :o) Gav came home in a bear outfit too!

Daddy picked this for her!

I finally found a baby book I actually liked - now I need to get writing in it!!

Okay, here's my DR visit recap:

Urine: no trace of protein, no trace of glucose!
Blood pressure: 113/68 - highest yet - but still completely normal
Weight: hahaha.. guess who gained 4 pounds in 2 weeks.. yep, that would be me!  I will shamelessly blame it on the Halloween candy and Texas.Roadhouse!  I will also point out that all my other appointments have been early in the morning and this was at 11:45 a.m. so my tummy had a bit more in it (and I had heavy clothes on) - okay, I'm done with the excuses - I'm just praying this girl does not try to beat her brother's birth weight - he was 8 pounds 9 ounces!
Heartbeat: 142 bpm :o)
Questions: I talked to Emily about the cramping, to which she again suggested I try a belly support belt.  She also offered to write me a note to decrease my work hours but I declined - I don't really feel ready to cut back my hours quite yet, still a lot that needs to be done before I will feel ready to do that.  (although the more I think about it the better it sounds)  I finished working with Gavin 4 1/2 weeks before my due date and it was lovely!  I also talked to Emily about listening to my iPod during labor, she of course said that was fine.  Emily reassured us that we are "out of the woods" in terms of preterm labor - they won't try to give me tons of medication and muscle relaxers to stop contractions should I go into labor now - but she did of course say another 3 weeks in my tummy is what's best for baby, another 4 weeks would be even better.  I think she'll stay for another 4 or 5 weeks but I am getting nervous about her size.. Emily said the best predictor of a baby's size is her mommy's estimate/guess and I have a feeling she's going to be right up there with her big brother.. yikes!
Next appointment: Thursday, November 19, 2009 at 8:00 a.m. - I will have my Group B strep test at this appointment - oh joy!

Belly measurement: I am right on target - 34 weeks!!  And she again confirmed that Gabrielle is still head down.. good girl!!
Midwife: We had Emily again, and she was great, again!  She had Gavin participate and even let him listen to his heartbeat, which of course he loved!!  I certainly wouldn't mind if she were on call during my labor and delivery - Steven and I both really like her :o)

The first video posted is when Gummy Bear had the hiccups - if you watch to the left of my belly button you can see my belly move at a pretty regular beat - it's so neat that you can actually "see" her hiccups!!  The second video is one of her dancing around in my tummy - enjoy!!

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

34 weeks = amazing!!


34 weeks - 6 weeks until our due date - that just makes me smile!!  I am so beyond excited to hold this little girl in my arms, no words can describe this excitement.. I just cannot wait!!!  I was at Women and Babies Hospital over the weekend for a placement with work (talk about buckets of tears!) but as I was walking with the adoptive family to the nursery there was a baby girl getting wheeled out with her pretty pink blanket and lovely crochet pink hat - I just started to cry - soon that will be Gummy Bear getting wheeled out to come visit her big brother and her mommy and daddy - I'm crying now as I think about it :o)  God is just so good and I am so incredibly blessed to be experiencing this miracle.. again!

I've been thinking about a hospital bag and need to start getting a list together.  I remember last time with Gavin I forgot a few major items that my mother-in-law had to bring in for me so hopefully this time I will be more prepared.  There are a few things we need to get for the hospital - like more tapes for the video camera and some toiletries - but for the most part I have everything we need - I just need to get it all together!

My goal for the weekend is to sort through Gav's toys and get most of them moved out of the family room and into the living room to clear a spot for the pack-n-play.  We haven't put that together yet but it shouldn't take long.  All we need to do yet in her room is move stuff down into the basement.  She won't be in her room for at least a month or so after she arrives, so we don't feel too rushed to purchase everything and get it all set up quite yet.. although I cannot wait to see her room 100% complete, it's going to be so beautiful!!  For anyone that hasn't checked out the registry or doesn't know the nursery theme here's a photo:

Isn't it just adorable and classy - oh I'm in love - I guess that's why it's called "Love Bug."  We went to Target over the weekend and bought a pack of diapers and a pack of wipes for her :o)  I really hope Gav starts to use the potty on a regular basis so we don't have to get diapers for two kiddos!

34 week quiz:
How far along: 34 weeks 1 day!
Weight gain: I'm sure I'm up about 26 or 27 pounds by now - doctor visit tomorrow so I will know for sure then.
Stretch marks: yeppers.
Any new baby items: yes! - Steven and I went to Carter's Saturday night and bought her a couple of outfits - I will try to get a photo of them and post it.  One of the outfits will be her coming home outfit - it's similar to the outfit Gav wore home from the hospital :o)  We also bought her a Christmas gift - her first baby doll -

Any new maternity items: yes, 2 long sleeve shirts from Old.Navy that were only $4.90!!
Sleep: not too bad recently, although rolling over has become quite the process, and my potty trips have been increasing lately!
Labor signs: not really - just the continued braxton hicks contractions/cramping
Belly button in or out: I'd say about 65% out - it never popped out with Gavin so it's pretty funny to see!
Food cravings: my mother-in-law came over Saturday night and watched Gav for a few hours while Steven and I went to Texas.Roadhouse - finally!!!  Thank you Lil for watching Gavin!!  And thank you Steven for finally giving in to this crazy craving of mine.  Oh my gosh it was sooooo delicious.. the rolls, the steak, the tea, the salad.. oh I could eat there again, right now!!  (I of course didn't love the bill.. yikes.. but it was well worth it!!)  I'm still diggin' ice chips but nothing else too crazy right now.
Movement: oh yea, this little lady is a dancing machine - especially in the evenings!  I got a video of her moving the other night - and one of her hiccuping - I will try to post them soon :o)
Gender: GIRL!!
Best moment of the week: enjoying a nice dinner with my hubby, getting a good start on our Christmas shopping and watching Gavin talk to his baby "sisser" and rub my tummy!!
What I miss: still all the things I mentioned last week, just being able to sit comfortably for more than 5 minutes.. I know it will all get worse before it gets better but it will all be so worth it in the end!!
What I'm looking forward to: continuing our Christmas shopping and our doctor visit tomorrow!
Weekly wisdom: "Today.. find delight in the little things." 
Milestones: Your baby now weighs about 4 3/4 pounds, like your average cantaloupe and is almost 18 inches long. Her fat layers — which will help regulate her body temperature once she's born are filling her out, making her rounder. Her skin is also smoother than ever. Her central nervous system is maturing and her lungs are continuing to mature as well. If you've been nervous about preterm labor, you'll be happy to know that babies born between 34 and 37 weeks who have no other health problems generally do fine. They may need a short stay in the neonatal nursery and may have a few short-term health issues, but in the long run, they usually do as well as full-term babies.