Saturday, February 28, 2009

8 Months

Today being February 28, we're a month away from the due date! I thought it would be kind of fun to share things that I can no longer do, now that I'm 8 months pregnant.
  • Put socks on - There is just no way to bend or stretch that gets me near my feet. I'm giving Dan an extra challenge when he helps me by moving my feet all around. Not that he needs the practice, but he'll be extra prepared to put on baby socks.
  • Eat enough - Regardless of the endless heartburn I have, I am hungry all the time. I wish I could say that I'm stuffing my face with fruits and veggies, but today it was chocolate bar donuts. I bought a dozen day-olds yesterday, and I'm happy to report there are 3 left. I did have some help, but not much.
  • Sleep for more than 2 hours at a time - If I don't have to pee every 2 hours (or 1), my hips and shoulders stiffen up so badly that I have to flip over. And let me tell you, that is neither easy nor pretty. It's most comfortable to get on all fours and rearrange that way, but for some reason I choose to lob my big stomach up and over and let it fall on the other side. Kaboom! But mostly I have to pee all the time...
  • Wipe - Yes, this is probably too much information, but it's something I never considered before I got this big. When you have a watermelon in your lap, there is no logistical way to lift it or move it to get in there. I don't know how I'm still getting the job done, but I am so thankful that I don't have to attempt it in the little tiny bathroom stalls at work!
  • Pick things up - I can't bend over and I can't squat all the way to the ground. If I really need to get something off the ground, I have to get on my hands and knees. Getting back up is a completely different point!
  • Walk more than 5 feet without losing my breath - And stairs? Forget about 'em!
  • WAIT FOR OUR BABY TO GET HERE!! - With 4 short weeks until our due date, I can't wait. I am really hoping that he'll make an early appearance. Anytime starting next weekend he's considered full term, so I'll have to start seeing if I can move things along. I plan to walk as much as possible (with an oxygen tank if necessary!) and hit the spicy foods hard. I'll put up with the extra bad heartburn if it means our little man will hurry up and get here. On one hand, a week or two from now seems like so little time and it's very possible he'll show up at 37 or 38 weeks...but on the other hand, it seems like we've been ready for him for months.
Come out already, buddy! I can't even imagine what else I won't be able to do in a month! :)

Friday, February 27, 2009

36 Weeks!

Wow...time has really flown since I stopped working last week. Tomorrow marks 36 weeks for this little monkey in my tummy.

Here's some info from our friends at

Your baby continues to put on weight at about ½ pound each week. This layer of fat will help your baby regulate his body temperature after leaving your climate-controlled womb. In fact, your baby will be 15 percent fat at birth (and you ... well that's another story). Even in the womb, your baby can listen, feel, touch and see. The only thing separating him from living in the outside world is a little thing called the birth canal. Other highlights this week:

His gums are firm with ridges that look somewhat like teeth, though his actual pearly whites won't start breaking through until he's between three months and a year old.

Your baby has definite patterns of sleep and wakefulness—opening his eyes while awake and closing them while sleeping. Your baby will become alert and turn his head toward light and sound just as a newborn would—except when you put on that Celine Dion CD. Then the baby puts his hands up, turns away and gurgles, "Oh no you didn't!"

Your baby is now around 18½ inches long and nearly 6 pounds—just about as big as a breadbox!

All through this pregnancy so far, I feel like I've been showing bigger than how far along I am. But in the last two days, two different people have told me that I'm pretty small for 8 months pregnant. Of course, I disagree! I feel like a whale and it's getting harder and harder to walk around. Dan has to put my socks on for me, and I have to surround myself on the couch with anything I can think of that I could possibly need because it is a real chore to get myself up! I have to rock to get momentum, and it's just not a pretty sight.

However, this stay-at-home-mom thing is going pretty well for me! I'm not getting as much done as I thought I could - my mobility isn't what it used to and most things are so tiring that I have to take a nap afterward. Of course, I'm guessing adding a baby to the mix will make things a little trickier, but we'll cross that bridge when we get to it.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Braxton Hicks

I think I'm finally having Braxton Hicks contractions. BH contractions are "practice" for the real deal coming up. In the last few days, I've been feeling kind of crampy, but last night, I had full on back spasms and tightness down low. I thought for a minute we'd have to pack our bag and head to Labor and Delivery, but no such luck. It's still a little early to have this little guy, though it wouldn't be dangerous at this point. He's pretty much ready by now - just a little small.

Other than that, things are going well. Today makes a full week that I've been home from work. I can't believe it's already been a week - time has gone so fast! I can tell that Baby Boy is growing. Not only is he sapping all of my (limited) energy, but his movements are slowing down. Yesterday I was actually worried enough to pull out our doppler to check his heart beat, but it was there, strong as ever. It was just so unusual for him to not wake up when I did! But then by the time Dan got home, he was stretching and turning like normal. He was nice and active this morning too. Dan caught the later bus so that he could feel him move more.

I can't wait to be able to see how he's doing, instead of playing the guessing game like now!

Monday, February 23, 2009

Baby Shower!

We had our baby shower yesterday and it was so fun!! Thank you so much, Elham, for throwing it for us. It was a blast!

We got to decorate onesies, bibs and socks for the baby:

And we played a couple of games. The first game, there was a tray of 20 baby-related items that we got to look at for 30 seconds. Then we had to list what we could remember. We got 10 more seconds to look at the tray to try to finish off the list. We had some pretty good remember-ers, but Stephanie won with 19 right! I got 16 and Dan got 18. Not too shabby.

Then we got to try 6 different kinds of baby food and guess what they were. It was much harder than you'd think! I only got one right - green beans. But our big winner was Jason with 5 out of 6. His excuse? "What can I say, I like bland foods!"

Then we opened presents and ate cake:

Look at all the great gear and books we received!

It was a great day and we feel so lucky to have such great friends and family. Thank you, everyone!!

Friday, February 20, 2009

A Day Under 35 Weeks

Wow. 35 weeks!!! 5 weeks until our due date, and hopefully we'll get to meet him sooner. He is definitely outgrowing his space. Dan and I watched a fist zip across my stomach last night. At least, we think it was a fist. Baby Boy moved it so fast and so purposefully. He is spending more and more time wedged up under my ribs - his back and butt and feet. If he really is gaining a half pound a week, I have no idea how he'll make it another 5 weeks. But my body (apparently) knows what's going on, so I have to trust it.

Here's some info from

Your Body

Before all this pregnancy stuff, your uterus was a small ball the size of your fist and was tucked neatly away behind your pelvis. Today your uterus is the size of a small watermelon and reaches all the way up to your ribs.

At this point in your pregnancy all the blood has gone to your belly ... literally. Nearly 1/6 of your body's total blood volume is chugging around in the vessels in your uterus. So that's why you feel so lightheaded all the time!

Your Baby

This week the final touches are being added to your mini-masterpiece and most of his development is going to packing on the pounds. While baby's movements may be becoming less jerky, he may do his final somersault in the womb soon—to put himself into the head-down position for birth. Other fascinating facts:

Your little Karate Kid can't quite pack the punch he used to due to the limited space inside the womb these days. You're likely to feel more wiggles, stretches and rolls than kicks and jabs. The extra layer of fat your baby is adding will create those cute dimples on your baby's elbows and knees. His liver has begun processing his waste products, so you know which organ to thank when he has his first blowout up the back of his onesie.

Baby's nails are growing so long they may curl over the tips of his tiny fingers and toes before he sees a pair of clippers. He'll be in serious need of a mani-pedi once he's born (as will you).

Your baby is now about 5½ pounds and over 18 inches long—about the size of one of those price-club sheet cakes.

Speaking of sheet cakes, this afternoon is our work baby shower! There are three first born babies due in our office between the end of March and the end of May. We're having a triple shower, which I can only hope means cake! Speaking of work, I got my disability note yesterday!! I was in the office on Tuesday, but haven't been back since. It feels totally natural for me to not go there already, which is super weird. But I'm nervous to go back today! The weirdest thing about being home is not being able to pop over to see Dan. I'm so used to seeing him whenever I's quite the adjustment to have it be just me and the cats. But on a positive note, I get to see daylight now (instead of the 4 walls of my windowless office). The weather has been so beautiful here this week. I'm looking forward to a good spring and summer, especially with a new baby to share it with.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Centering Pregnancy - Session 7

We had class 7 of 9 last night, and all is still going well. I'm up a total of 31 pounds, my blood pressure is pretty good, Baby Boy is measuring right on track, and he's head down and ready to go! His heartbeat is still strong in the 140s and is very regular. Even though it seems kind of silly to be proud of an involuntary action, I feel so proud that his heart is beating so strongly! He's our little over-achiever already.

Last night we had a pediatrician come talk to us about things we'll need to consider and look for in the early days after our baby comes. He was very knowledgeable and patient, so we're considering him for our pediatrician. There is still so much to do in the next month!

As for me, I'm at home on the couch right now. I'm waiting for our midwives' office to open so that I can get my note disabling me from work. I had hoped to get the note last night, but our regular midwife wasn't at our class. The one that was said to call in the morning, and either of them could get the note to me today. I'm not too worried about it, but I am eager to get the paperwork in and officially start my leave! I'm in limbo right now, which is a weird place to be. I half feel like I should have gone into work with Dan today, but my swollen ankles are thanking me for being home.

Monday, February 16, 2009

Meet Bob

This is our new BOB Revolution 12" Aluminum Wheel stroller! We met BOB today at The Right Start near U Village. He weighs 22 pounds, but is very flexible and light on his wheels.

You can fold BOB up with very little effort, and unfold him with even less. He can turn on a dime and is not much bigger than other strollers.

It'll be a few months until we can take BOB out for a spin, but I'm looking forward to using him when I take Baby Boy walking this summer.

There are accessories we still need to get for BOB, like the handlebar console, but we're pretty good to go for now.

One more thing to check off of our list, and one step closer to being ready for our little man.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

By Popular Demand

Here are some pictures of this morning, 34 weeks and 1 day pregnant!

The first picture is of me showing off our decorating skills. We framed pages from a tropical fish calendar with colorful ocean words. There are 12 of them around the nursery. We bought the light-up seahorse and the big fish poster at Ikea (and the long alligator on top of the book shelf too!). The rocking chair was my Dad's when he was little. He and Cindy had it refinished and the cross-stitched seat restored, all for our little guy to enjoy.

The second picture is our standard: in front of Baby Boy's crib. Same pose, but a little closer.

So Aunt Kathy and Aunt Brook, eat your hearts out!

Friday, February 13, 2009

6 x 7 = 42 Days: 34 Weeks Tomorrow

When I was learning my multiplication tables, I always seemed to get stumped on 6 x 7. I made it my mission to know 6 x 7 the best of all, and it has stuck with me ever since. Was there ever any question that I'd be a math geek?!

Anyway, tomorrow we hit 6 weeks, which means 42 days left until our due date. offers this information (and picture) for the 6-weeks-to-go mark:

Your baby kind of looks like he's coated in a layer of cream cheese these days. The thick, white substance that protects his skin from pruning in the amniotic fluid is called vernix. When he's born you'll probably see some vernix lingerin
g in his "hard-to-reach" places like under his arms and behind his ears. Other news from the womb this week:

The soft fur, lanugo, that covered your baby's body for much of his stay in the womb is now almost completely gone. Your baby begins to develop
his own immune system, instead of relying solely on antibodies received through the placenta. This will come in handy when some grubby relative manhandles the baby without washing his hands first.

This week, your baby measures about 17¾ inches, as almost as long as an American Girl Doll (!) and weighs almost 5 pounds, as heavy as a bag of sugar, minus the cup you put in your decaf this morning.

I like this picture, because I think it's exactly how Baby Boy is positioned. His little butt is up under my right ribs, with his feet ready to kick and stretch, and his little hand is prepped to ball up and push with. So cute! He was super active all day yesterday, and gave Dan quite the show last night. I'm really looking forward to the three-day weekend to rest and spend time with my baby's daddy. Hooray for Presidents' Day!!

Wednesday, February 11, 2009


Only 6-ish weeks to go, and it's still really hard to believe that I'm growing a person. He has sleeping and waking patterns, and I can feel him move and push and kick. But he's an actual baby person! I picture him the only way I a growing skeleton, like we saw him in his ultrasound. I obviously don't know what he looks like, and he's getting chubbier and bigger, but I picture a 5-pound skeleton. Does that make me a bad mom already?

Dan and I were also talking about his experiences now. He can hear things going on around him, he can see light, he has hiccups...but other than us rubbing him or me grabbing a hand or fist when I can, he has no actual interaction with the outside world. That's pretty amazing too. What a shock it's going to be when he comes out into this dry, cold, bright place that he knows nothing about! No wonder babies cry: they've been warm and cuddled and rubbed for months, and then BLAMMO! Not to mention that he's all of a sudden going to have to breathe for himself and eat. No more free lunch (or oxygen) through the umbilical cord. That's got to be exhausting.

We had a nice visit with my Dad and Cindy last night (Big Daddy and Tutu). My dad got to feel some of Baby Boy's acrobatics, though my Dad seems to have the same soothing touch as Dan so the movements didn't last too long. It's nice to know so many people will be able to calm him down when he's in this big new world!

Six weeks...unbelievable!

Monday, February 9, 2009

Head, Shoulders, Knees and Toes

Name that body part! That's the game that Dan and I have been playing all weekend. Our baby boy is really stretching out and, in turn, we get to figure out which body parts he's pushing around with. We found a foot lodged up under my ribs; I chased a hand or an elbow across my left side; a full leg caused an earthquake across my whole midsection. It really is incredible. With 48 days left until my due date, he still stands to gain another 3-4 pounds and another inch or two in length. I've heard that when a pregnant woman's stomach stops being round and starts having corners, the baby is close to being born. I couldn't imagine what that meant until recently. I don't have permanent corners yet, but I can see that coming soon.

Now, to be completely honest, not all of his movements are comfortable. In order to really kick his foot up into my rib cage, he has to push pretty hard off of my bladder. When he rolls over completely, I feel like my stomach is going to pop open. But for all the discomfort I have now, I already know I'm going to miss feeling him when he's here. Luckily, I'll have little toes to tickle and cheeks to kiss, which I'm sure will more than make up for it!

Friday, February 6, 2009

33 Weeks Tomorrow

The big news this week is lung development—baby's respiratory system is almost completely mature. That means if your baby was born this week, odds are he'd be a healthy bouncing baby with a just a little help from his friends (aka, the NICU). Some of the specifics are:

Your baby can now detect light and tell the difference between night and day (of course that ability will miraculously disappear once he's born and up all night screaming). His pupils will constrict and dilate in response to light. If you shine a flashlight on your belly, your baby may shy away from the light as if to say, "Cut it out, Ma. You're soooo annoying."

The bones in your baby's skull are soft and are not yet fused together. In other words, now is not the time to teach him how to do a headspin while breakdancing. This pliability allows the bones to overlap; making that trip down the tight birth canal possible (and resulting in that surprising cone head look your baby will sport for the first few days post-birth. Don't worry, it's totally normal and that's what hats are for.)

Your baby will continue to pack on the pounds gaining around ½ pound a week from here on out.

Your baby weighs about 4½ pounds, as much as a grownup duck, and is approximately 17.5 inches long, about the same as a collarbone-length pearl necklace.

That's our weekly update from our friends at says the baby is currently proportioned like a pineapple, weight-wise. I agree - he is big and heavy! And based on his frequent stretching and re-positioning, I'm pretty sure he's got very little room to maneuver.

I have also read that my vivid dreaming will kick back up again. I can definitely attest to that! Last night I dreamed that I had the baby, but I had to keep him in me most of the time (he went in and out of me through my mouth). I was trying to breastfeed but he wasn't getting enough, so I had to supplement - with strawberry instant breakfast, fed through my ribcage to him while I was "storing" him in me. So weird! And that was all before Dan even came to bed last night. :)

And one final thought for this post - maternity clothes are a total pain! They're designed for women who are 5-6 months, not before and not after. It took months for me to fit into the clothes I bought (but I couldn't squeeze into my normal clothes anymore), and now that I'm into the 8th month most of my clothes are getting too tight and/or too short. It's a daily struggle to keep my growing stomach covered! But I also refuse to buy more clothes this late in the game, so I'll have to make what I have work. Oh well...I could have worse problems than a wardrobe malfunction!

Wednesday, February 4, 2009


Wow, halfway through this week already! It's a good thing too because I'm exhausted! We had our 6th Centering Pregnancy class last night and talked more about the birth process and pain medication options. Dan and I look forward to our classes - the people are great and it's a fun time. Last night, the dads were asked to squeeze ice in their hands for a minute, while we moms tried to comfort them the way we'd like to be comforted during labor. Of course, one of the dads screamed and shouted for the whole minute, so the rest of us were cracking up. I'm not sure if we got the point of the exercise, but we did get a good laugh.

We only have 3 classes left - and that puts us at March 17. I guess time is going to fly by, and I'm okay with that!

Monday, February 2, 2009


It's February already. Holy moly, it's almost baby time! He is most definitely head down, getting ready to meet us. I don't think he has "dropped" yet but he's got plenty of time for that. Baby Boy is definitely using as much space as he can get - I can feel hands and/or feet all the way out on my sides and up in my ribcage occasionally. Most of the movement is to the right of my belly button where his little tushie is currently wedged, and down by my left hip where his hands like to play.

There are also times where I swear I can feel his practice breathing. My stomach moves in and out rhythmically but gently, and it's not me breathing or my heartbeat. I'm not sure if that's even possible, but I'm thinking it has to be. It's not like hiccups, and there aren't hands or feet where I'm feeling the movement. But who knows? It's cool to think about anyway.