4.26.2008

Ryan and Amy Versus Target

Ryan and I had a MAJOR run in at Target today. You know how it goes when you register for things. You get so many great gifts at showers and truly are thankful for each and every single thing that people pick out. Sometimes, people forget to have the check-out person scan the registry, so items that were bought do not show up as bought. Then, more people end up buying the same thing. Plus, I think people are actually shopping at the same time and buy the same thing, so it again makes for duplicates. Additionally, when we're talking about baby clothes, onesies and sleepers in particular, you end up with LOTS of clothes that are one size or another and really don't need all of them. I want to respect people's generosity, so sometimes I attempt to change out sizes or exchange an item we already have for something we still need. This is just the nature of registries!

Well, Babies R' Us will take back anything that they sell in the store...receipt or no receipt. It is wonderful, and even though it is really hard to find what you are looking for in there, they have great customer service. So, today we did just that...went to Babies R Us to exchange some bottles and nipples that had been given to us since there has been a lot of new research suggesting that BPA in the Avent bottles we were going to use was not safe for the development of children. Here is some information (http://www.cspinet.org/nah/bpa.html), but there is much more on the web if you are interested. Walmart and Babies R Us have both stated that they will not sell bottles containing BPA after 2008. So, we decided to be proactive and make some changes rather than take a chance at any negative effects from Avent bottles. Babies R Us very EASILY let us return those bottles and just gave us store credit. We updated our registry and with Dr. Brown's BPA free bottles and nipples...along with all of the accessories rather than all of the Avent stuff.

After going out to see a movie at our favorite dollar theatre ($2 total for us to see Fool's Gold!), we went to Target to try to take back 5 packs of onesies. Each of them were duplicates/a size that we already have so many onesies for and totaled over $50...a substantial amount for purchasing something we still need for the baby. Well, let me just tell you something. Target does NOT take ANYTHING back without a receipt...not even for store credit...not even to exchange for an item of a different size or color. For example, if I had a pack of 0-3 month onesies, and I wanted to exchange it for the same kind but in size 6-9 months, they still don't allow it...even though the price is exactly the same. Is that the craziest thing you have ever heard or what??? I argued that we have a registry with the store and that should take the place of a receipt. They didn't care. Here is what they WILL allow you to do. They will let you take back items under $20 TWO WHOLE TIMES a year. Seriously, they scan your license to see how many times you have taken back items without receipts. So, they allowed me to return 4 packs of onesie's for store credit, but we had to keep the 5th pack. Those are my TWO returns without a receipt for the YEAR. WOW! Ryan will have to take care of returning items (again, only under $20 on two occasions) if we have any more issues. Interestingly, my friend Jill (who was in the baby shower pictures from RISE's shower) walked by and said hi after I had been throwing a fit at the customer service counter. In the meantime, Ryan was on the phone talking to someone from India trying to get some help...guess what...it didn't work). Anyway, Jill was laughing because she and her husband had both dealt with the same issue at Target, and they were irate, too! She suggested asking family and friends to return things b/c she had already used her two opportunities for the YEAR, too.

So, here was our solution. Give us our store credit for those 4 packs of onesies, we'll keep the 5th. Then...I'm going to delete everything off my registry so that we don't have these same problems anymore. I will move anything we still need to Babies R Us because they will exchange or return anything WITHOUT a receipt. Yeah, I said it! :) I told them that I have another baby shower in two weeks, and I can't take the risk of running into the same issue again since Ryan and I only have two more opportunities this YEAR to return/exchange items without a receipt. Yeah, we're crazy like that! You know what they suggest we do??? Call the people who gave us the gifts without the receipt and ask for it. ARE YOU KIDDING ME??? They seriously want us to call our closest friends and family and say, "You know what...we didn't actually want the gift you got us because _____________, so do you mind sending me the gift receipt so we can get something we still need." YEAH RIGHT! Talk about a slap in the face and just utter rudeness. I told them there was NO WAY we were going to do that and again, I said I will not have any registry items at their store. Plus, I said that I am going to tell all of my friends and family not to register there either because their return policy is too strict and impossible. I mean, I could have ended up with like 3 bassinets and not have been able to exchange them because I didn't have the receipt (they are items over $20). Can you even imagine?

So, seriously, I'm not trying to be a crazy pregnant lady here, but I'm encouraging you to consider this for your own good. First, do NOT register at Target unless they change their return policy. You will get duplicates (it just happens), and they will not take anything back without a receipt. Second, include gift receipts with ALL of the gifts you buy for people. I am REALLY BAD at doing that, but now that more stores have strict policies, I am going to be sure to include the gift receipts.

I love Target...I really do. We should own stock in that store for as much as we shop there. This is just a really terrible policy, and they're going to have to do something or people won't want to register there anymore.

On a positive note, I think we have everything we need for our hospital bags (bought directly from Target...hehe). Tomorrow I plan to pack them up to get ready for the big day! :) I really hope that I wasn't a total downer, but this story was too crazy not to blog about it. It will be funny someday when Ryan and I look back on it...someday. :) For those of you who drink wine, have a glass for me because I really could use one after that ordeal!

4.25.2008

35 Weeks

We hit the 35 week mark on Wednesday!! For information about the baby's development at 35 weeks, click on the link below:

http://www.babycenter.com/6_your-pregnancy-35-weeks_1124.bc?intcmp=Nav_Global_MyBC_Stagepage&pn=BC%20Homepage

I have definitely experienced more Braxton Hicks contractions throughout the week, and some of them are accompanied by a little pain. I usually forget what I've already written about in my blogs, so sorry if this is a repeat, but the pain honestly feels like the baby is scratching my cervix from the inside. Yeah, no one tells you that about pregnancy, but everytime I ask women if they experienced it, they all say, "Definitely!" Well thanks for the warning everyone! :) For those of you who haven't been pregnant yet, get ready for that feeling. It really doesn't bother me at all. Instead, I really feel like it's a sign that things are getting that much closer for the baby to arrive. It also is giving me a slight understanding where the some of the pain is going to come from during labor. The baby is definitely pushing down harder on my pelvis, and sometimes I really do feel like it's arm is going to come out!

I got my second leg cramp of the pregnancy this week, too. I woke up, stretched, and immediately began screaming "LEG CRAMP! LEG CRAMP!" Ryan was like, "What do I do?!?" He tried to rub it a little bit, but until I could pull my toes back toward my leg, the cramp didn't go away. WOW, those things can really take your breath away! I have also had very noticeable leg and foot swelling this week...the newest symptom of this pregnancy. :) It was so bad after my baby shower on Wednesday that I seriously thought my skin might break open. Sorry for the visual...just trying to be honest! I had the best pair of cankles that I've ever had in my life. I mean, you couldn't see my ankle bones at all. It was incredible!

Kelli (Ryan's sister) and I got together earlier today, and I had a great time! I didn't have to work due to a snow make up day, so we decided to go get pedicures in Carmel, have lunch, and then do some shopping. We went to Beauty Brands, and they really gave me the best pedicure that I've ever had. My feet feel wonderful, and fresh polish always makes me feel wonderful! After our pedicures, we went to Motherhood Maternity to get some nursing bras. Once you hit the 8th month mark, they tell you to go ahead and get the nursing bras. You just get one size bigger than your current size. Well friends...that meant I needed an E...yes E...like ELEPHANT! I was cracking up! I know people say that when your milk comes in that you'll need the extra space but WHOA! I got two nursing bras, and two fun spring shirts to help me cope with the warm weather and feel prettier during this final month of pregnancy. We had lunch at a Japanese Steakhouse, which I've totally been craving, and it was wonderful. I got the steak and shrimp combo, salad with ginger dressing, and fried rice. That meal works really well with my diet. I just have to take it easy on the rice! After lunch we went to Kohls, and boy did I spend way more money than anticipated! I got 4 pairs of pajamas to wear while I nurse, a pair of slippers, a pair of slipper socks (both for the hospital), and a robe for the hospital. You see, my goal is to have our hospital bag packed by the end of the weekend so that I'm not stressing out about it. I also FINALLY found a coverlet, pillows, sheets, and shams for our guest bedroom, which is why I ended up spending so much money. I have been looking FOREVER and can never find anything I like. Have I mentioned that I'm a picky person?? Anyway, I love what I picked out, so hopefully it will work well in the room. I got $60 of Kohls' cash after those purchases. I've only used that once before, so for those of you who don't know, when you get Kohls' cash, you can go shopping with that certificate without having to spend a minimum amount or anything. So basically, we have $60 FREE to buy whatever we want! I am pumped! It will be great to use once we know the sex of the baby to buy some gender specific clothes. How fun!

Hope you've enjoyed the blogs. I will probably continue to write after the baby is born...for who knows how long. We'll just see how it goes!

Baby Showers at Work

Ok, so I work with the BEST coworkers ever. They have been so supportive, encouraging, and excited throughout this pregnancy, and it has really meant the world to me. Last Friday, several people from RISE Special Services, the special education cooperative where I work, threw a coworker (Big Irv's wife for all you Hanover people) and me a baby shower! Jill is due just a couple weeks before us, so it's been really neat sharing our pregnancy experiences together. We all got together for lunch at a restaurant called Steak and Ale. There were probably about 25 people there altogether, which is amazing b/c everyone is scrambling to finish projects before the year ends. Here are some pictures from the shower:



The lady in the pictue with Jill and me is made both of us a quilt...it is so cute! She also made the cake for us to enjoy. You can imagine my blood sugar after that lunch! :) Anyway, 27 of my coworkers chipped in and bought our pack-n-play:

The rest of my coworkers at the shower bought diapers, wipes, toys, clothes, rattles, blankets, and books for the baby. I'm tell you...they spoiled us ROTTEN! The shower lasted two hours, and I just had the best time. I couldn't believe that people we able to stay for so long, and it meant so much to me that they all came to celebrate this baby's life with us. :)

THEN...as if I hadn't already been overwhelmed by the generosity of my RISE coworkers, the special education staff whom I work with at Abraham Lincoln Elementary also threw me a shower this past Wednesday. I walked into the room and was just blown away by how cute everything was. They knew that we have an animal theme in our nursery and decorated the tables with stuffed animals. They also had this HUGE clothes line with so many onesies, sleepers, towels, and washcloths...I can't even tell you how many there were. A group of people pitched in and bought us the baby's swing:

On top of all of those wonderful gifts, not to mention the delicious food and punch they prepared, the kindergarten, first grade, second grade, and fourth grade teachers each went in and bought the baby really great gifts, too! We got so many great things, and the nursery is just filling up! I really am lucky to have such great coworkers. Speaking of work, I am only going back to work part time next year, and I'm really excited about it. I debated for several weeks about what to do next year, and my bosses have been supportive in my working 2 1/2 days each week and staying home with the baby 2 1/2 days each week. I am so lucky!!!


Behind on Blogs...

I'm so sorry for being so behind on blogging. Almost everyday I think to myself...oh my gosh, I'm going to have to blog about that, but I have just had a hard time finding time to do it. Over the weekend, Ryan and I worked on the nursery a little more. After we hang some pictures this weekend, I will be sure to post pictures!

On Tuesday, Ryan and I had our advanced labor support class. This class is designed to help couples learn various techniques to cope with labor when they are attempting a non-medicated childbirth, which we are. So much of what we talked about in class has reinforced what I have read in many books, so it was good to hear things again. There were only 2 other couples present, and our instructor was the same lady that we had in the afternoon of our full day childbirth class. She was wired as usual, talking a mile a minute. :) The main thing that stuck with me from that night was when she had us walk in the hallways pretending to be in labor. Ryan was walking in front of me, and I had my arms around his neck following behind him. The walk was more like skiing though the halls. Then she would say, "Ok, you're having a contraction. Dad's what can you do?" It was pretty funny!! Well, it was funny until it hit me. I thought, "Holy potatoes! This isn't a game. We're not just playing around here. This is the actual hallway I am going to walk down while I'm in labor in the next few weeks!!" It really hit me that we are to that point in the pregnancy where things can happen at any time. I came home and was said to Ryan, "Do you realize that in the next few weeks, there is going to be a baby in this house." He looked at me like I was a little crazy. We've just talked about it for so long, and no matter how much I read, shop, prepare, decorate, etc., I don't think I can fully and mentally prepare for what is to come. I am getting more and more excited everyday, and it really just blows my mind that we are almost to the point of meeting our baby. I can't wait!

4.20.2008

Breastfeeding Class

I didn't have time last week to write about the breastfeeding class my mom and I attended, so I thought I'd do that now. :) The class was 2-2 1/2 hours long at IU Hospital downtown Indy. The same lady who did the morning session of our day-long childbirth class actually presented on breastfeeding. She did a much better job giving information this time around! She is a lactation consultant for the Clarian Hospitals, so this was kind of her forte. Even though this was my second time being around this lady, I still don't know her name...she never introduced herself. So, for the sake of this blog, let's call her Sally...yeah...Sally the lactation consultant.

There were only two other couples at the class, one due before us and one due after us. I'm always a bit envious of couples who are expecting their baby to come before ours! I was really glad that my mom went to this class with me. Ryan would've been great...don't get me wrong. It was just a fun way for us to bond and for her to share something with me that she really enjoyed about having my brother and me. Even though I've read books about breastfeeding, it was really good to be at the class and have all of my questions answered.

For those of you who are like me and know very little about breastfeeding, here's some information for you. When the baby is born, it is best to try breastfeeding (if that's how you choose to feed your baby) within the first hour or two. If given the chance, many babies will actually wiggle their way from your belly after being born up to your chest to latch on and have their first meal. Isn't that WILD!?! Anyway, babies tummies are the size of a marble at birth, so they need very little in their first several feedings. Colostrum is the first milk that the baby takes in. It is filled with antibodies and nutrients and is just the perfect amount for the baby's tiny tummy. Then, about three days after the baby is born, your milk actually comes in. The baby will likely nurse anywhere from every 1 1/2 to 3 hours, and that's from the start of one feeding to the start of another. Yep, breastfeeding is going to be my number one job for the first few weeks or so after the baby is born! :)

Most of my questions surrounded pumping breast milk. Sally highly recommended waiting a solid month before introducing bottles to the baby. Of course, people definitely do this sooner, but I am going to give it my best effort! The baby uses different muscles to breastfeed than bottle feed, and they typically don't have to work as hard to bottle feed. So, waiting a month can help establish breastfeeding before introducing bottles. I will be heading back to work early August, and my goal is to continue feeding our baby with breast milk. My dad and Danette bought us this amazing breast pump (they say if you're going to do it, get a good one!), which will really help with giving our baby breast milk for as long as possible. I don't necessarily have a particular time set for giving our baby breast milk, but in my mind I would love to do it for 6 to 12 months. It is recommended that babies only have breast milk or formula for the first 6 months before introducing foods, but again, I know some people will introduce rice cereal sooner than that. I'm sure our pediatrician will help guide that process! I guess pumping is pretty simple. It goes faster than actually breastfeeding. I'll store the milk in these ziplock storage bags that go with my pump in a cooler that comes with the breast pump, though Sally told us that breast milk stays good for up to 8 hours without refrigeration due to all the good bacteria and antibodies in the milk. WHOA! If I need to freeze the milk when I get home, I will just have to take it our and run warm water over the bag for 5-10 minutes to thaw it. Pretty cool, huh?

Sally also talked about the positions to hold the baby while breastfeeding and encouraged us to try different positions after getting the hang of it in order to prevent getting too sore. Speaking of pain, she said if you are just in a lot of pain, the baby is not latching on correctly. I'm glad that I'll have the support of our doula and other female friends and family members to help support me while we figure it out. Some babies are just great eaters and take to breastfeeding right away. Others need a little more help! So, let's hope that this baby is great at latching on and is a good eater. :) Again, time will tell!!!

4.17.2008

34 Weeks and Counting!


Can you believe we only have 6 weeks to go??? We are just getting so close to the end of this journey, and it's very exciting and a little scary all at once. Here is some information about the baby's development this week:

http://www.babycenter.com/6_your-pregnancy-34-weeks_1123.bc?intcmp=Nav_Global_MyBC_Stagepage&pn=BC%20Homepage

I'm getting Braxton Hicks contractions more and more throughout the day. The contractions are starting to feel a little different than before, though. Typically, when I have BH contractions, the top half of my uterus just gets really tight...no pain involved. It's more of a squeezing sensation. Now when I have contractions, I am feeling it much lower sometimes. The baby feels more like he or she is pushing down, and I even thought it's arm or something was going to fall out of my body yesterday...seriously! I don't know if my cervix is starting to dialate or not. I will find out in the next week or two when Dr. Soper checks me, but I am starting to get an understanding of what that will sort of feel like when I'm in labor. Of course, it's not near as intense now as it will be then, but like I said, I feel like it's just giving me an idea. Speaking of Braxton Hicks, I'm having one now. See, they just happen more and more all the time!

My blood sugar has been really good this week! I've had good feedback from the nurse and dietician at Methodist Hospital, and I'm sure my doctor will be pleased, too. I feel so much more encouraged now, and I know I can keep a handle on it until the baby is born. :) Last night I spent the evening with one of my friends from our church group. Her baby girl will be one month old tomorrow, which completely blows my mind because it feels like she was just born! Anyway, it was really special to be around them because my friend and I were pregnant together for 29 weeks, so I watched her go through all of the different stages of pregnancy. Now I get to see her as a mother, and it makes my heart leap to think I'm just steps away from that point. I just felt that much more excited for what is to come! I love thinking about having a baby this time of year. I'm sure we'll wait awhile before having a second baby, but if we can plan a Spring pregnancy again, that would be wonderful!

Tomorrow people from RISE are throwing a coworker and me a baby shower, and I can't wait! My friend and I are only 2 weeks apart in our pregnancies, so it has been a fun journey to experience with her, too. Everyone at work has been so excited and supportive of this pregnancy, and they say the NICEST things to me. I've been trying to carry their compliments with me as fuel to push through when people don't say the nicest things at one of my buildings. FYI, don't feel like you should say, "Wow, you look like you could go anytime!" to a pregnant woman unless she truly is days away from her due date. Someone said that to me today, and I was like, "I still have six weeks to go" with a big grin on my face. The lady was like, "Oh....really?" Things like this do not make pregnant women feel beautiful! Even though we may smile when you say it, we secretly want to punch you in the face. :) :) :)

As you can see in my pictures, I think I hit another growth spurt. I can really tell a difference between what I looked like 2 weeks ago and the way my body looks this week. Plus, I must admit, I ate a HUGE salad with a friend downtown and downed about 3 glasses of water, so that probably didn't help. I have felt more pregnant than ever this week than ever before. Between the Braxton Hicks contractions (I'm having another one as we speak) and just taking longer to go from the floor to standing up, I can tell that I'm getting closer and closer. I'm hoping to at least have 3 more weeks until the baby comes. It will be better for the baby to be 37 weeks; plus, I can get a lot finished at work in the next 3 weeks. Time will tell!!

I hope you all continue to enjoy reading this blog. It has been such a fun way to record my memories, and I know I will have fun looking back on it someday. If I can make some time to work on my scrapbook a little more, I'm planning to take it and some other items to the hospital for our family to look through while I'm in labor because who knows how long of a journey that will be! Again, time will tell!

4.13.2008

A Weekend of Fun

What a great weekend! I have enjoyed every second of this weekend from beginning to end. When I got off work on Friday, I told Ryan that I really wanted to grill out because it was so nice outside. I couldn't decide if we should invite people over or just have a quiet night to ourselves. Then Ryan suggested we ask a couple from our small group (Bible study) and their two kids, as well as two other friends from church and their son. Ryan grilled bratwursts, cheeseburgers, and hot dogs, and then we had a bunch of different sides and some brownies. Six adults, three kids, two dogs, and two babies in utero...it was a full house and a lot of fun!!! After dinner (and several glasses of sugar free cherry Kool Aid) the kids laid down to sleep/rest, and we all played Settlers of Catan. If you haven't played that game yet, I highly recommend checking it out! I think I'm going to buy it online, along with the expansion pack so 5-6 people can play it. Yes, I am a total game board geek! Our friends and their kids left around 11 p.m., and we fell asleep about 2 seconds later. :)

Saturday morning I woke up early because my mom, my nana, and I were going to have brunch together. There aren't many women on that side of my family, so it was really special to have three generations of women together to celebrate the upcoming addition to our family! After my mom picked me up, we drove up to my nana's condo. When we got there, this is how the table was set for our brunch/tea party:





Aren't those place settings so cute?? My nana just has this amazing ability to decorate...something that unfortunately does not come that easy for me. We just spent time talking and catching up for a bit, and then I opened some gifts from them. They bought us a boppy, a boppy safari cover, our breast pump accessory kit, and our stroller bag! It was so generous and thoughtful...those were definitely things we needed! After opening gifts, we sat down to have brunch. We had the most delicious quiche, bear claws (I cut mine in half to watch my carbs--aren't I the most compliant person??), fresh fruit, and tea. I'm not sure if it was caffeine free or not, but I didn't have the heart to ask because everything was just so perfect! We spent some more time together after brunch, and then mom and I headed back to Greenwood. It was a perfect afternoon.

As soon as I got home, I crashed! I was really tired and slept for about an hour while Ryan was at band practice for church. When he got home, we drove to Plainfield to hang out with Abigail and Devin for the night. We're really trying to be out with friends as much as possible before this baby is born because we know Babell will be keeping us pretty busy and sleep deprivated for awhile after he/she is born. We had dinner at Red Lobster, and it was delicious! I ate 1 1/2 biscuits (usually I eat like 4) because they are 1 carb each. With my salad and shrimp, I was kind of pushing it, but I had such a great week that I didn't feel like stressing out about it. We went back to Devin and Abigail's after dinner and guess what...we played Settlers of Catan again! This was my 5th attempt playing the game, and I finally won!!! Abigail was one second away from winning, and it was only her first time. I was madly impressed! Here is the final board...I was blue (one of my settlements in the lower right corner got bumped out of its place, so don't mind that):


Today we went to church in the morning and made our second acting debut. You can actually download the services at this website if you are interested: http://emmanuelofgreenwood.org/. I can't remember if I already mentioned our current sermon series, but if not, it's titled, "I'm Married to the Biggest Loser", playing off the TV show. It has been great so far! After church I made lunch, we watched a movie, and then fell asleep for a couple hours. We set up the air mattress in the middle of our sectional so the dogs could sleep with us, too. It was WONDERFUL! I have to say, though, that the baby has never been as active as it has today. I'm not sure that it slept much at all! Plus, it is just getting so big. Right now, for example, it is stretching out and moving around quite a bit, but it is completely pushing on and kicking my left hip...to the point where it actually hurts just a bit when I feel the initial kick. It is completely crazy!!

Tonight I went to prenatal yoga for the first time at http://www.sacred-space-yoga.com/index.html. My friend went last week (she's due 11/11/08) and said she really liked it! I had been wanting to go but never really followed through. So, it was the perfect opportunity to go tonight with her. I really enjoyed the class! I really wanted to take the time to connect with the baby and to be fully aware of our bodies being so intertwined, and let me tell you, this baby was moving like crazy the whole time! I think it really liked it! I could do the balancing and flexibility poses fairly well but had a lot of trouble with the pose that required a lot of upper body strength. I am definitely lacking there!!! I am going to go each Sunday night until the baby is born in order to just focus on relaxing, becoming centered, breathing, and being with the baby. Going to church on Sunday morning, having family time in the afternoon, and going to prenatal yoga at night will be the perfect way to start my work week. I don't know that I've ever felt so happy in my entire life as I have this past year. We are just so blessed, and I am so thankful for every day that God gives me. I hope you all have a wonderful week!

4.09.2008

Expectant Mother Parking Rules!

So Ryan and I had to run some errands for groceries, dog food, and a leaf blower tonight. After finishing up at our favorite place...Target...we had to run to Meijer to get dog food (Target was out) and the leaf blower. As we pulled into the parking lot, I spotted some "Expect Mother" parking. I was like, "We have to park there!!!" I mean, front row parking in the crazy Meijer parking lot...talk about making my day! I think it just made everything that much more official. I was sticking out my belly with pride as we walked into the store.

Also, a winning moment to share - All of my blood sugars were below 120 today!!! HOORAY! I didn't make enough time to pack a lunch, so I had school lunch...pizza, green beans, and milk. I saved my apple for an afternoon snack. Anyway, I was worried because I'm not sure about how many carbs are in school pizza, so I took a lap around our elementary school at a fairly quick pace...quick for my preggo self anyway! I think that actually made a difference because my lunch blood sugar was only 96, and I am allowed to be as high as 120. I feel great!

4.08.2008

33 Weeks!

Ok, so I'm writing the 33 week blog one day early, but I figured I have some other things to write about so what the heck. :) Here is some information about the baby's development at 33 weeks:

http://www.babycenter.com/6_your-pregnancy-33-weeks_1122.bc

Can you believe this once microscopic being is now over 17 inches long and weighs over 4 lbs.?!?! I must say, it's getting more and more difficult to type on a lap top when the computer actually sits on my lap. Right now, Ryan and I are sitting on our screened-in porch. Layla's in the backyard guarding the fence (her favorite pasttime), and Kya is snuggled up on the puppy bed next to us on the porch. This is my absolute favorite!!! I just love coming home from work and feeling the sunshine and a slight breeze, breathing fresh air, and being with my family. It is seriously the best! I know it's silly, but I LOVE that Layla loves playing in the backyard. :) I feel so much joy watching her run around back there! Kya likes to stay a little closer but will go play with Layla from time-to-time. There is just something about Spring that makes you feel lighter on your feet and more hopeful about things in general, I think. It will be such a perfect time to have a baby! Just think of all the walks I can take this summer with the baby in the stroller. I can relax on the porch with the dogs in the back yard, and the baby can nap in his/her pack-n-play. It will be great!

As you can probably tell, I'm feeling a little bit better than the last time I blogged. I had my first mild-to-moderate freak out about the labor and delivery of this baby, as well as the small amount of time that Ryan and I have just for the two of us. We have had a great 3 years of marriage and 4 years of dating before that. I know our lives are going to change in ways we can't even understand right now, but at the same time, we know it's going to be something amazing that we also can't begin to understand either. I was in need of some much needed one-on-one time with Ryan this weekend, and we completely got it! He took me out to La Trattoria for dinner Friday night, and then we went to see Juno. It was a great date!!! For the rest of the weekend, we got some different things done around the house but also had plenty of time to relax, too. It was just what the doctor ordered! I felt rejuvenated and excited again for the big upcoming changes and events in our lives.

I had an appointment with Dr. Soper today for our 33 week check-up. I weigh exactly the same as I did at my last appointment two weeks ago (23 lb. gain so far). Dr. Soper and I went over my blood sugar results, and she seemed to think things looked fine so far. I have been pretty discouraged at times because I will stick to my diet and still have higher blood sugar levels. However, I'm starting to think that my sitting on the couch for a week had a lot to do with it because I wasn't getting any physical activity. Now that I'm back to work, things have been going much better. Who knew that walking around at work would make that much of a difference? Anyway, after we talked about that, Dr. Soper measured my fundal height, and I'm still measuring 3 cm ahead of my due date (I'm 33 weeks, and I measured 36 cm). At least it's consistently 3 cm rather than getting bigger and bigger. Most of this is probably the way I'm carrying the baby. However, since I do have GD, the baby might be a little bigger, too. Time will tell! The baby's heart rate was 132 and sounded beautiful! I will go in at 35 weeks and get my beta strep test (http://www.mjbovo.com/Pregnancy/PG-BetaTest.htm - don't mind the typos b/c the information seemed pretty accurate). Then, I will start going every week until the baby is born. Can you believe we are at that point in the pregnancy? WOW!!!

By the way, I'm predicting a mid-May baby. I don't know why...call it a mother's intuition. :) Oh and after the baby is born, I'm going to drink the BIGGEST, TALLEST CHERRY COKE with whatever kind of chips and candy bar I am craving...just so you know! You are welcome to visit at the hospital if you have one of these three items with you. :) Otherwise, you will just have to make a trip to the vending machine if you want to see the baby!

4.04.2008

32 Weeks


We hit the 32 week mark on Wednesday...hooray! Here is some information about the baby's development:

http://www.babycenter.com/6_your-pregnancy-32-weeks_1121.bc?intcmp=Nav_Global_MyBC_Stagepage&pn=BC%20Homepage

I've been on Spring Break all week, and it has been so nice to have a break from work. Unfortunately, as most breaks go, it has gone way toooo fast! I am trying to turn this blog into a scrapbook, and I am quickly realizing how much more time it is going to take me than I thought it would. I also finished writing my thank you letters for the two baby's showers I've had. I'm so glad they are all out now! When I look in the nursery, it just blows my mind how much stuff we have for the baby already thanks to so many amazing friends and family members. We are so blessed!

As far as the pregnancy goes, I'm still feeling pretty well. I feel my best in the morning and afternoon, and then the evening gets a little bit more tiredsome. My body is just starting to slow down a little more, and I can't do as much at once or in one day as I used to do. Ryan is really encouraging me to ask for help more often and to take it easy, but most of you know how difficult that is for me. :) I just like to do things myself! Getting up and off the couch at night continues to become a little more uncomfortable, mostly with my hips and pelvic bone. I know it's just a good sign that my body is preparing for the continued growth of the baby, as well as the delivery of him or her.

Speaking of giving birth to this baby, everything really started to hit me on Wednesday night. I don't really know what caused it, but all of the sudden, I felt a little anxious/scared for the first time. It hit me that Ryan and I have only 8 weeks (give or take a couple) to enjoy our one-on-one time, and then our lives are going to change quite a bit. I know we can still go on dates and visit with friends, but I know doing those things just won't be as easy as it has been the past 7 years. I am starting to realize how breastfeeding is really going to tie me to the baby until we're in a better position to bottle feed with breast milk. My friend just had her baby girl two weeks ago, and she was saying that it was difficult to stay inside day in and day out. I can completely understand that! I am really hoping that the weather will allow for nice walks and getting outside often. I also started thinking more about how big this baby is getting and how one of these days, I'm going to have to push it out. Having never experienced labor or delivery, the unknown can be a little scary. I'm really trying to work through that nervousness, though, because I'm reading this book about hypnobirth. It's partially based on the premise that fear of a situation actually causes one to experience more pain due to the hormones/chemicals that are released in fear-provoking situations. It makes your body tighten rather than open up. I really like thinking about it in those terms because I strongly believe that our emotions are the result of our thoughts, and if we can have more positive and rational thoughts, our emotions will follow suit. It forces you to reframe situations a lot but works really well! So, I'm hoping that I can work through some of my fear and reframe that into more positive thinking in order to help control some of the pain.

We met with our doula last night for about 4 hours! It was a really long appointment at our house, but at the same time, it was wonderful! We answered a lot of questions so that she could get to know more about our perceptions of labor and delivery. She took us through the stages of labor, but it was better than the way books, videos, or classes have described it in my opinion. She not only talked about physically what is happening, but she also described what a mother is typically doing or feeling emotionally during those stages. Julie also had us start to figure out what type of birth plan (a kind of wish list for labor and delivery) we are looking for with this baby. We are going to try to labor at home through early labor and some more active labor, that way I can be as comfortable in my surroundings and have freedom to move around the house or go on walks outside to help the labor progress. I hope to be in active labor when we arrive at the hospital so they don't send me home or attempt to move things along with medical interventions (unless they are really necessary). I am hoping to labor in a tub during transitional labor (often described as the most difficult part of labor) because water really helps with managing pressure and pain during labor. My OB doesn't like to do water births with a first baby, so hopefully when it comes time to push, I will be able to climb out of the tub, jump back into bed, and push this baby out! There are lots of details to the birth plan that we will create. Once we are finished with it, I'll post in online for you to see. :)

Ryan and I did not take pictures on Wednesday like we typically do, so I will post some as soon as I can! Hope you all have a great weekend!!
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