Thursday, December 11, 2014

39 Weeks and Counting

I’m fairly certain the only people that read this blog already know the things I’m about to post anyway, but I do love reading these things about other people’s pregnancies, especially towards the end so I’m going to be honest about the last week and try to record some for my own memories.

Last Thursday, December 4th, I started having contractions about five minutes apart. Okay, so I’ve had Braxton hicks contractions for weeks and weeks. I know the difference. Even some of those were quite painful and consistent, enough so that I’d hop in the bath and time them, but after an hour they would die down so I knew it wasn’t the real deal. Thursday they were intense. I knew exactly what they were but was a little bit in denial. The first hour I tried to ignore them as I continued to work and didn’t tell David what was going on.

He came home for lunch right in the middle of one and immediately asked me what was going on and for how long. At that point, I decided it might really be happening – against my wishes to not have this baby that weekend because I had so much fun Birthday plans with little Belle. I got in the shower, thinking they would stop. Nope, they got more intense. I convinced David to let me wait another hour to be sure. Within that hour I was miserable and they were getting closer to 4 minutes apart. So we called Sister #4 to sit with Annabelle and headed to get checked out (after I changed Belle’s sheets and asked David to unload the dishwasher of course).

We got to the hospital and I felt like a fool telling the front desk that “I think I’m in labor.” They told me to sit down and someone would be right out. I was so uncomfortable at this point I couldn’t sit down. When the nurse came to take me back, she immediately asked how long this had been going on and how long my first delivery was. She watched me through one contraction and said she thought we might be meeting our daughter within a few hours. So she checked me – I was at a 4 – and hooked me up to be monitored for an hour. This hour was tough!

She let me stand instead of laying in the bed because this was more comfortable to me. During this hour, my contractions were steady at just three minutes apart and have high peaks. I know everyone says this, but I really do have a high pain tolerance. These were painful. She came back in, looked at the strip of paper with my contractions and started asking me all the questions about being admitted. Would I want an epidural, do I prefer to stand, etc. She said she needed to check me before she could admit me. 

And guess what….nothing! She looked at me in shock and said I was still a 4 and that since I was 37 weeks and 6 days pregnant, they would need to see some progression. So we walked the halls for an hour which felt better than just standing in the room and got checked again. Nothing. By this time she suggested we try one more hour and check again. I was exhausted by this point, and I knew in my heart that it wasn’t the day I was going to meet my daughter (at least not without some interventions that I didn’t want to go through if it wasn’t necessary). So we asked if we could leave, promising that if things picked up or got more painful, I would rush back. She told us she wanted the doctor to make that decision, not her, and that she thought we would be right back. Well, we weren’t.

We went to Texas Roadhouse because I’m obsessed with their sweet potatoes. I knew things were tapering off because I was hungry and could sit in the booth. We went home to Annabelle and my mom was worried about leaving, thinking we would be turning right around to go back, but I knew the excitement of the day was done. That night in the night I had painful contractions, but nothing consistent enough. And since then, it’s been such a rollercoaster.

Yesterday my contractions were ten minutes apart for four hours – like clockwork. And by 6 they were 8 minutes until 9 when I decided to try to go lay down. I woke up a few hours later with two painful contractions close together, but then was able to walk them out and go back to bed. This has been my night on repeat for over a week. And each morning, I wake up to not being in labor and head into work. It’s crazy to me. I never really knew what false labor was I guess.

I’m trying hard to soak up every last detail of our life right now. We don’t plan to have more children so I’m trying to just enjoy these kicks and these feelings. I am soaking up our evenings with Annabelle and love putting her to bed each night. And when I’m up pacing with these contractions I sneak in and look at her and wonder if it’s her last night as my only daughter. I know this little miss will be here on the very perfect day and her Birthday has been planned out long before I even knew I was pregnant. But in the meantime, send me some good vibes, would ya? I’m getting to be one pretty tired momma.

Monday, December 1, 2014

Shake it up

I absolutely love our mornings here. Annabelle has been waking up about 6:30as opposed to her 7 or 7:15 that she used to do and I love it so much more because we get to spend just that much time together. We have to leave the house by7:30, so the 6:30 wake up is perfect. David and I get ready before she wakes so that when she’s up we get to play with her, get her ready for the day, and have a shake together.


She loves helping us cook, and I really think making shakes is one of her favorite things to make. Every morning we make them together, and it’s quite a process. Actually, I’m pretty worried about being gone for a couple of mornings while we are in the hospital. I don’t know if anyone will really know what she’s talking about for her shake.


She helps me with every step: puts in the ice cubes, watches me scoop out peanut butter and then holds the peanut butter spoon, tells me when to “stop” with the almond milk, “tap taps” the protein mix in, spoons in some flax meal, puts in the spinach and kale, and takes a bite or two of the banana before putting it in.


Then, once I put it on the mixer to mix, David holds her and she makes the cutest surprised faces and says “too loud” in a silly tone. She picks out a straw for each of us and likes them to match. Then she sits on the counter to drink hers and have some cuddles. It’s all just really sweet to me.


It’s become one of my favorite parts of our day.


Monday, November 24, 2014

37 Weeks

As it turns out, stress really does do some crazy things to your body. We have had a pretty stressful month, although I hate to even say that because everything has turned out perfectly and things are fine. But in the moment, we had some pretty crazy things going on.


We’ve had some crazy job stuff going on with me – some uncertainty and unknowns. I am confident and feel peaceful it will work out perfectly, but job stress is just not fun at all. During some big announcements, Annabelle got hand, foot, and mouth disease! Oh my gosh. You know the germ freak in me was totally upset about this. I had pretty much rid my house of chemically based cleaners and promptly went out and bought some bleach and Lysol – I just couldn’t trust that vinegar was going to do the trick.


Plus, Annabelle, as you might have guessed if you know her, didn’t handle this illness the way some do. Some of my friends said things like their son didn’t even really seem to act any differently than normal. That wasn’t the case for miss Belle, the poor thing. She was absolutely miserable. I tried sleeping with her, rubbing her feet all night, anything to help her. David and I took shifts. It was only a few days, but those days and nights will haunt me for a while. She was so sad and my heart was broken seeing her that way. So I had to be away from work while some crazy work changes were happening and be home with my sick little one. She is all cured now, but gosh it was a long week.


Did I mention the day we found out she had this, we had taken her crib down and set up her big girl room and big girl bed. We tried to get the crib back together quickly because obviously she couldn’t sleep in her big girl bed in that condition.

And then I think the work stress, having the heater in our rental go out, having one of our heaters in our home go out, and not to mention the fun busy-ness of baby showers for my sister, a baby shower for me, and just the overall excitement in our families right now finally started catching up with me.


On to the pregnancy update now that you see a little backstory.

I am 37 weeks! Throughout this pregnancy I’ve had some dizzy spells/passing out. I talked to my doctor about it and she ruled out stress (surprisingly enough) and thought maybe I wasn’t eating enough or wasn’t eating the right things. I focused on eating more protein for a couple of weeks and trying to eat more. I still haven’t been feeling great or have much of an appetite, so this was a little bit difficult. When two weeks passed and the spells weren’t going away, I went back and she was concerned. Also in the last two months, the sweet little girl has been measuring about one week behind what she should be. Our doctor hasn’t been concerned by this since she was still consistently growing, even if just a little bit smaller.


I had a spell at work and freaked out enough of my coworkers that I moved an appointment up to that day so I could talk to my doctor before hitting the road the next morning to go to a hospital an hour away. She was concerned at the appointment about my heart and more concerned that our little girl was measuring at 33 weeks when I was over 36 – the exact same as she had been measuring two weeks before which was already behind. So we scheduled a sonogram and got to see our beautiful, perfect, chunky baby girl who just happens to be measuring perfectly! Almost to the day of her due date. She is perfect and just stretched out enough to maybe make me be measuring off. I haven’t gained weight for a while, but that doesn’t seem concerning. I think I’ve gained about 23 pounds overall.


Here’s what we learned about our littlest one:


-          She weighs an estimated 6 pounds 3 ounces

-          Her little feet are so high in my ribs that the tech could only see one heal of one foot! She said that she’s never seen something like that and thought I must be in pain. I told her yes, just slightly and tried not to roll my eyes.

-          She is very low and head down. My doctor had commented on how low her head was already.

-          She is definitely still a girl.

-          She had her hands up by her little, perfect face

-          She has tons of hair! We got to see it halo-like floating around her head.

-          She has perfect chubby cheeks – so kissable!

-          She has full, beautiful lips and a double chin

-          She’s a mover! Every appointment people comment on this. It’s true. I feel her moving around in there all the time and she visibly shifts my stomach

-          She is still estimated to make her arrival sometime mid-December

It’s funny that all of a sudden all the stress and anxiety leaves when you see your little girl on that screen. I instantly became hungry and slept a little bit sounder (minus the contractions that wake me at least four or five times a night and are powerful enough to make me think “this is really it!” and then fizzle out by morning).


Thanks for reading this absurdly long post, but I wanted to be sure I recorded some of this for later on. I love reading my pregnancy posts from Annabelle.


Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Fall Fun

We have been having so much fun with Fall activities. And today I woke up to a cold, dark morning and realized that it really is Fall – I’m not just being excited too soon like I usually am for seasons and holidays.


This week we had one of my friends over with her little boy that is just about a week older than Annabelle. Annabelle loves him and talks about him constantly which is pretty funny because they really aren’t around each other very much. They had grilled cheese sandwiches and then got to work painting pumpkins in the garage. We used painters tape to make their initials on their pumpkins, and then just let them go at it. I think this will be our standard pumpkin decorating for the next few years. Annabelle loved it and laid in bed for a half hour that night talking about her friend and paint and pumpkins.

Last night during the Royal’s game I made homemade pumpkin bars with homemade cream cheese icing. Yes, I said “homemade” twice. I had to really emphasize that because most of my baking comes from a box and a tub of icing. I was pretty proud. While I was waiting for them to cool to ice, I made some treats for Annabelle’s daycare celebration. A friend sent me this idea for a healthier treat from Pinterest. I think they turned out so cute.

Today Belle was so excited to dress in a special Halloween shirt! I have a few outfits for her so decided to start a day or two early.

She looks so big to me lately. We have been ready to switch her to her big girl bed for a while now, but I keep getting really emotional about it. Tomorrow we are ripping off the band aid and switching.Tonight will be her last night in her crib. I’m not kidding when I say that “It Won’t Be Like This For Long” came on my Pandora this morning and I definitely had to redo my makeup.


Friday, October 24, 2014

Vera Baby Sale

I'm a little worried Vera Bradley is doing away with their baby line because everthing is on major major sale. (Vera

Instead of researching it though I decided to take advantage of it. I grabbed Baby Girl's coming home from the hospital outfit, a matching lovey bunny from Belle, and the sleeper gown before they were sold out. 

You have to check out this sale if you have girls under 12 months. I have some pieces from when Belle was little and they really are good quality in addition to being so incredibly adorable!

How snuggly is Baby Girl going to be in this outfit for her big trip home from the hospital!

And I thought this sleeper is too sweet!

Friday, October 17, 2014


Lately I can’t get enough of salads and apples during the work day. So that’s great. But in all honesty, by the end of the day, for dinner, I have been wanting Chinese food every single night. That or cereal! David has been so great about indulging in this little craving session and not making me feel bad about it, but oh man, it has to stop soon. I can’t think of many cravings that would be worse than my obsession with fried rice, sesame chicken, and egg rolls. Seriously, I would eat it every single night but have backed off to once a week.


At least throughout the day my cravings have stayed pretty healthy.


My favorite lunch right now is a salad and an apple. Pretty good. I have been all over the place on my salads, but most commonly it is a spinach, kale, carrots, broccoli, almond, and cranberry mix with Vidalia onion dressing. Yum!

And I’m not being too hard on myself about this Chinese food kick. Let’s face it, I felt sick and vomited for almost 30 weeks and pretty soon I will be too big to really eat much of anything. So a couple of weeks of fried rice can’t be all that bad.

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

31 Weeks and a Fun Weekend

Today I’m already 31 weeks along. This Friday marks two months form our due date. I can’t believe it.

We finished painting Annabelle’s room last week and have been airing it out and adding details. (Pictures to come.) I am making her one of those ribbon picture hanger thingys. I don’t know what they are called. And we have her sheets and quilt all ready. And all of her clothes are moved to her new closet. I am not sure when I will actually pull the trigger and move her. I am trying to keep her a baby for a bit longer. But it’s nice to have her room almost done because that means that I can work on the nursery. I can’t even express my joy and excitement about having my two girls here so soon.


Speaking of my other girl (who has a name but we just don’t want to announce it yet), she’s doing great! We had an appointment Friday and her heart rate is 140s, maybe 150 which is just perfect. I hadn’t gained any weight since the last appointment (just two weeks ago) and my stomach was measuring at about 28 weeks instead of almost 31. My doctor didn’t seemed concerned about this at all. I was in shock only because I was thinking that I was huge and would measure big. I feel her moving around all the time! Like all the time. I am at peace that she’s completely fine and that the measurements just aren’t too accurate.

This past weekend was so special and fun. Sister #2 was in town, Sister #1 and my mom came over for bagels, we celebrated a dear friend and her baby boy at a baby shower, went to the orchard, and spent time relaxing. I told Annabelle a hundred times how she truly was my best little friend.

I love dragging her everywhere with me and I love how talkative she is. She tells me full stories now – well in pieces, but I help her fill in the blanks. She is just such an amazing little girl. I made her dress like me today and was thinking about how much fun it will be to dress my girls alike soon enough.

I hope you have a great Fall week friends! Tonight is Tiny Tot Town. I am always curious if Annabelle will love these types of events and she always surprises me. She seems to have little to no social anxiety like I do, so I try to be sure to get out of my comfort zone and take her to these events. She’s so fun!


Monday, October 6, 2014

We Can't Get Enough of Fall

Have I mentioned lately how much I love Fall?

We had a wonderful weekend spending some much needed time together as a family of three. We actually didn’t do anything extraordinary this weekend at all - which makes for some of my favorite memories.


Friday Annabelle spent time with her grandma and of course, baked. This is one of their favorite things to do together.

Friday night we spent some time celebrating friends’ birthdays and then went home to put Annabelle to bed and cheer on our Royals! Who isn’t excited about the Royals right now? It’s impossible to not be!

Saturday morning we woke up and made a big breakfast and ran errands. We prepped Annabelle’s big girl room for painting, bought all the supplies, (David) washed the walls and removed all the remaining traces of wallpaper, bought the paint, and are now completely ready to paint this week. We had every intention of painting this weekend but it was just too beautiful and we were having too much fun with our little girl.

We watched a ton of sports, went on lots of walks, went to church, ran errands, and relaxed. It was wonderful. While Belle and I were running some errands without Davidon Sunday afternoon, he made the most delicious chili ever! David’s chili and a Royals win - It was a perfect end to a perfect weekend.


Friday, October 3, 2014

Black Bean and Quinoa Casserole

We tried this dinner last night and I have to say that it was pretty good. I think we will be adding it to the regular rotation when we want Mexican but something a little bit different.


I found the recipe here:


I do have to say it took a tiny bit of prep for a week night dinner – next time I will probably wait until a weekend so I can start the prep early.


I really love quinoa so I added more than a cup. I think the only variation I will do next time is to use something a little more spicy than the medium salsa I used. Or maybe add more? I forgot to take a picture of it when it came out of the oven- but here's before.

I served this with a dollop of plain Greek yogurt and my homemade guacamole.


For guacamole I do two ripe avocados, some chopped onion, chopped garlic, chopped tomato, and a splash of lemon juice. I actually prefer lime but didn’t have one. Annabelle loves guacamole. We give her one chip and she pretty much uses the chip as a spoon.


Monday, September 29, 2014

Doctor's Appointment

I had my doctor’s appointment on Friday. Sometimes I think I’m just waiting for those appointments to really breathe a little bit easier. I feel sick all day, but then instantly after hearing her little heartbeat I am starving and ready to go!


This appointment was the exact same way. I was anxious all day. To top off the normal pregnancy anxieties, I knew David couldn’t come to this appointment with me. Okay, I am totally and completely spoiled. David has gone to every appointment with me during my pregnancy with Annabelle and so far with this baby girl. I know this is crazy, but he’s just so calming and excited that I don’t get so sick if I know he’s going to be there. I’m spoiled.


Anyway, I was especially anxious because my doctor is out of town so I was seeing someone different, getting a shot, David wasn’t going to be there, and I’ve been having some contractions that have concerned me a little. It didn’t help that once I checked in they let me know the doctor had just gotten back from delivering a patient so she was running behind. I had to sit and get anxious alone for 45 minutes.

I spent my time texting with David and my friend (thanks Marissa for distracting me!).

Everything was just perfect with our sweet little girl. Her heart rate is about 145 – similar to last appointment, I’m measuring right on schedule, I’ve gained 21 pounds (which I was a little shocked about since I still have 12 weeks and that’s almost what I gained overall with Annabelle but ohhhh well) and she was active and busy the whole time.

Waiting for the doctor!

Now I start going to these appointments every two weeks! That is just crazy to me. I remember when I got to this point last time how it all really started flying by. I know soon enough we will be holding our new little girl!

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

28 Weeks

Third Trimester!


I seriously cannot believe how fast this pregnancy is flying by. I have an appointment this week so I will know more about the little girl soon. I can tell ya already that she is a mover just like her big sister. At our last appointment she kept kicking the monitor out of the way so it took the doctor a while to chase her down to get her heart rate. I get so excited (and slightly tired) thinking about Annabelle and this little girl chasing each other around and playing.


I have been feeling better in the last couple of weeks and think the vomiting may have officially stopped. I’ve also been sleeping a little bit better. We’ve been eating healthier since the sickness stopped and I’ve been trying to do things at night to unwind before bed. I try to put my phone down after 8 and I’ve been enjoying reading and taking baths. We’ve also had such beautiful weather so I get to play outside with Annabelle and go on lots of walks. All of this has made this pregnancy so enjoyable.


Although I can’t wait to hold this precious girl in our arms, I am trying to really appreciate this time with Annabelle. I remember towards the end of my pregnancy with her feeling the same way. So excited of course, but a little bit anxious about the change in our family dynamic. David and I have had fun building a to do list of things we want to do before she gets here, things that we know will be put on hold just a little bit with a newborn.


I will give a better update after my appointment, but here are some things I already know about this baby girl (who has a name but we aren’t ready to announce it):

- She loves her big sister – every time I hold Annabelle or Annabelle talks she kicks and moves like crazy.

- She is completely loved by her big sister already – Annabelle calls her by name in prayers now and told us yesterday that it’s “my baby” when we asked what was in my tummy.

- She’s busy – she doesn’t hold still, that’s for sure.

- She must have hair like Belle did if the old wives tale is right – my heartburn is out of control!

- She must be long – she jabs me in the ribs and kicks me in the side at the same time sometimes – I think she’s all sprawled out in there.


I just recently finished the cute book, The Hurricane Sister’s, and picked up three more from the library. Two I had on a waiting list for David, and one random read since my pick was still on hold. I haven’t started mine yet and I’m glad I didn’t because I received my favorite email this morning, letting me know my “on hold” book was available for pickup.


I cannot wait to start this book.

Have you heard of Robert Gailbraith yet? I hadn’t either. I was browsing some “must read” lists when I came upon this book and new author. Well, not so new author really. It is my beloved J.K. Rowling. Now, don’t get me wrong, I was highly disappointed with Rowling’s adult release,Casual Vacancy. But I have high hopes for this new adult book. New name, new book, new season, new trimester. Let’s give it a try!

Tuesday, September 23, 2014


Last night Belle and I were in the mood for comfort food. David had a late board meeting so I picked up Belle and went home to make a super unhealthy, but delicious dinner. 

We made quiche. I love that one of her favorite things to do is to cook. This time she was truly involved in almost the whole process. I was going to let her watch one of her shows while I did the final cleanup and final steps, and she didn’t want to. She wanted “mow stir” – more stirring.

Here’s the recipe I used. I did add, just to make sure it wasn’t anywhere near healthy, some sausage to ours. We also had cheesy rice to go with this. If you are in need of some good old fashioned comfort food, I highly recommend this.


Monday, September 22, 2014

Fall Already

You all know that Fall is my very favorite season. Today is the last official day of summer, and it has been a beautiful one! But I can’t wait to get all my Fall things started. To be honest, I’ve started Fall already in our house. Decorated with my favorite owl napkin rings and orange napkins, replaced all my summer colored flowers with Fall ones, popped pumpkin scentsys in the holders and lit pumpkin candles, and even had my first pumpkin latte. I’ve set the mood, now I’m ready to get started on our fun to do list.


Since Belle is an outside girl, I can’t wait to experience a beautiful, Midwest Fall with her again this year.

Here’s what we have planned so far:


·         Visit the apple orchard as often as possible – we’ve already been once and she loved it!

·         Go on a hayride at the pumpkin patch

·         Let her pick out a pumpkin and color or paint it

·         Have tons of fire pit nights in our backyard – but at least one or two that she gets to be involved in

·         Roast her first s’mores on the fire pit

·         Go for a nature walk to let her collect leaves for a craft

·         Say hi to the spiders every morning – yep, seriously. She is obsessed with “Biders” and blows kisses to them. We had to teach her not to touch by telling her they bite. Now she rambles “Piders. Bite. No, no, no!”

·         Read all of her Fall books we’ve been collecting

·         Rake leaves and let her jump in them

·         Have her help me make pumpkin waffles, bread, or treats


These are just some of the things I have in mind for the next few weeks. Hopefully we can squeeze everything in before it gets too cold!


Happy First Day of Fall Eve! And incidentally, I start my third trimester tomorrow too! Yay!

Tuesday, September 16, 2014


Last night we made the most delicious dinner. I have to apologize because now I cannot remember where I first found this recipe. I have the original source, but I’m thinking it was on a blog I read to start with – so I’m sorry if I’m not giving credit. Anyway, this was so super easy and so good. And we have leftovers to throw over quinoa tonight.

We’re talking so easy that Annabelle helped me with it so we had a nice warm meal ready for when David got home. I love that Belle continues to love cooking with me. It’s so much fun.


We had it with some whole wheat pasta and a spinach and kale salad. Delicious! Annabelle wasn’t the biggest fan of the pesto so I shredded hers up and added it to her pasta and I don’t think she noticed it as much.


She has gone from being a picky eater to eating almost anything we put in front of her. I have a couple of theories on this. We are working on limiting any snacks between meals. I think she has a better appetite. When she does snack, it’s something light and healthy like a rice cake or a handful of cereal.


We are encouraging her try more things. I was having anxiety over the fact that she was eating mac and cheese and chicken nuggets almost daily! But I was scared to serve her anything with too many spices. Now we just don’t offer her the chicken nuggets and it turns out she loves flavors! She ate every bite of what I was worried would be a too spicy burrito.


We also bribe her. If she will try two bites of something like pesto chicken, then she gets her greek yogurt at the end of the meal (this is what she thinks dessert is and we want to keep it that way!). I like that she’s getting to be old enough to reason with in this way.


This is a relief to me not only because I feel like the things she’s eating are healthier, but because it means I’m not making two meals all the time – one for her and one for us.