So I've hit the 34 week mark, crazy. For whatever reason, everything is starting to feel a lot more real. In less than 6 weeks, we will have a new member of the family - making our family a unit of four. Not only that, but we will be in the midst of caring for a newborn and meeting a new little personality. I'm getting really excited to see how good my memory is at recalling the ins and outs of motherhood to a newborn. This means breastfeeding all over again (I only got a 5 month break from breastfeeding because I breastfeed Lincoln until I was about 4 months pregnant), nap schedules, spit up and all of the glory that goes along with a new babe. At the same time, we are trying to prep Lincoln for the newest member of the fam. This means telling him about mama's growing belly (that he now says looks like a volleyball) and engraining the idea that this baby will be here with us... forever. Wow. Crazy to think that we will have a new normal. I have a certain amount of nostalgia for what we currently have, because it feels so perfect, but also know that the best is yet to come. Can't wait to meet this little sweet one.
Maternity Look: First off, I want to give a huge shoutout to PinkBlush. They have provided Cate + I with the cutest maternity clothes throughout both of our pregnancies. I honestly wouldn't feel the same without the opportunity to pick from a collection of well-priced, adorable maternity clothes that pushes me outside of my day-to-day sweat pant look and into a more feminine ensemble. This last round of dresses that Cate helped me pick from their site have been my favorite. They are not only cute and girly, but are also super comfortable (key at this point in my pregnancy). I am one of those girls who likes to wear the heck out of an outfit, which means picking clothing that I can really *wear* throughout the day and feel comfortable in. The Black Striped Button Up Midi Maternity Dress pictured in the photo above is all of that, plus some. It truly is so comfortable that I can wear it walking to the park, around the house all while feeling beautiful and put-together for Ryan when he gets home from work. If you are a preggo mama, totally check out their site here. You won't regret it!
Diet: So last week I posted about my 24-hour virus that I got that left me feeling horrible for a few days. This also contributed to a weight loss of about 2 pounds. This week, I'm confident to say that I likely gained that weight back, plus some. I have been eating really healthy, but also think that my body is doing what it needs to do to make baby comfortable and growing adequately. I am also pretty confident that this little babe could be a boy (for several reasons), which means that he may need more food - not sure if that is a myth, all I know is that Lincoln was a champion eater. Because this baby is measuring two weeks ahead of the general weight guideline, I further think it is a boy. While I try not to obsess about the scale, it's also crazy to see your weight go up 4 pounds in a matter of days - especially when you are eating how you normally do. I go to the doctor on Monday, so I will have a more accurate picture of where I'm at. Needless to say, I will for sure stay around 30 pounds, plus or minus. I'm totally thankful to God for this - seriously - because my last pregnancy really took a toll on me mentally (having put on nearly double what I have gained this pregnancy - yes I gained close to 60 pounds). If anything, I really hope to be an encouragement for mamas, letting them know that any sort of weight gain is totally amazing and welcomed. Last time, having gained double the encouraged amount, I often had feelings of sadness and anger. As much as I loved being pregnant, the weight gain and number on the scale was a straight up struggle. A little anecdote... at the end of my pregnancy I had stopped looking at the scale and then one doctor's appointment I finally caved and looked, and saw that I had gained 55 POUNDS! That night when Ryan got home, he found me sobbing uncontrollably in the bathroom. Mentally, it was just so hard to be so in love with welcoming and carrying our baby, but at the same time I was so hurt and angry about all of the weight that I had gained and the changes that my body had gone through. It really was this love/hate relationship with loving being pregnant and the prospect of meeting our baby, but also hating all of the weight that I had gained. Anyways, I just hope that mamas reading this know that I am on your side. Yes - this time I got lucky - I really watched what I ate, but I also think my body was more in tune with how to carry a baby. I wasn't on bed rest and I had an unbelievable pregnancy - thank God. Last time, it was very different (in terms of weight gain). I just hope to be a voice of reason, encouraging you to love on yourself, your pregnancy and your body. Know that you can and will lose the weight if you put your mind to it, and not all pregnancies are created equal. Every woman is different, every body is different and you should be proud that you have a healthy little one inside of you -- and are able to carry and birth a baby!
Exercise: I've been exercising a lot, which makes me feel amazing -- this is really the main reason that I do exercise -- so that I have energy throughout the rest of the day. My main priority is keeping my body healthy and also being able to give Lincoln all that he needs right now, which is a lot of activity and adventures throughout the day. The days I don't exercise, I notice that I feel more sluggish and Lincoln and I don't do as much. To make sure that I exercise, I get up first thing in the morning, feed Lincoln, and then we head out to the YMCA. I get my hour workout in, either doing a step class, spin class or a silver sneaker's type class (lol), then we head home. He takes a nap, I get ready and then we are ready to tackle the day. This routine has really set me up to be in a great position mentally and physically in the third trimester. I love love love my step class as my number one workout routine - and I participate in this class Tuesdays and Thursdays. It is moderately intense cardio and sculpting class, which is perfect for pregnant women. All I have to watch out for is keeping my balance on the step and also modifying certain ab exercises - these are big "no-no's" while preggo. Spin class is also good but gets uncomfortable on the bike. My other go-to workout lately (on Monday, Wednesday and Friday) has been a beginning group cardio class, also known as a silver sneaker's type workout. I'm not sure if it is actually Silver Sneakers, but the class is full of about fifty men and women over the age of 75! This class is PERFECT for a pregnant mama, late in her third trimester. The pace of the workout isn't too fast, yet there is a nice amount of cardio and weight-lifting that isn't too taxing on the body. I have come to love this class on my more "off days" combined with the more intense step class on my "on days." I encourage preggo mamas to look into this. Not only is it fun, but the older people really appreciate having a younger face in the class!
Pregnancy Symptoms: So I'm trying to think of pregnancy symptoms I have at this point and I'm drawing a blank. I will say that my belly is getting HUGE. I often feel that dry, itchy skin feeling on my belly because of how thin the skin is stretching. Last weekend, I also started having MAJOR Braxton Hicks contractions as we were walking around the Country Music Hall of Fame. They were so intense that I had to lean on the side of the stroller constantly. I knew these weren't actual contractions because I now know the difference, but it was crazy how much my belly changed shape and was tightening. There is a certain part of me that actually likes feeling these Braxton Hicks because it reminds me that my body is preparing for labor. Other than that, I can't really think of too much more... I still go to the restroom a ton because how much baby has dropped although it feels easier to breath at this point. My acid reflux has also gotten a heck of a lot better. I really don't have much of it unless I go out to eat and eat something really rich. I don't have much swelling at this point - my wedding ring still fits perfectly and my feet and hands don't look or feel very puffy. I also haven't gotten that line down my belly yet - so weird.
Thoughts on Boy or Girl: So I won't go into too much detail, but I'm pretty sure we are having a little boy. Thus, the nursery theme I have tried to incorporate more and more 'boy' in just in case my urge is correct.
Doctor's Visits: I have a doctor's appointment for my 34 week checkup on Monday. I believe this is only routine at this point. Not sure when doctor begins to check how dilated I am.. or if I even want that. I have heard stories of women going into labor prematurely as a result.. trying not to be paranoid about it though. It is fun to see how much you've dilated, but I also wonder, why do I need to know? More importantly, I see the urologist on Friday. This person is a specialist who will tell us more about the kidney dilation and how we need to proceed with that. I've gotten a ton of encouragement from mamas telling me their stories about how it went away on it's own. I'm still hoping this will happen in our situation - that baby's kidneys will somehow heal on their own. I'm trying not to stress about it at all, and really I know that it will be ok, but it is always a bummer to have anything wrong, even if the doctor tells you it really isn't anything to worry about. Prayers for our little one on that front!
Delivery: I'll have my delivery checklist reposted soon. I really haven't given it that much thought this time around. My strategy is simply to throw everything together last minute and to get to the hospital to meet our baby! haha! I also know that we really need to install the newborn carseat.. ahh so crazy to think we will be pulling it out again. It gives me chills of excitement thinking about meeting out baby and making it real by installing the carseat. Other preparations for delivery are non-existent. Again, I am getting an epidural (I think), unless my labor is super fast and easy.. but whose ever is? lol. I also thought about getting the private suite at our hospital for $150 more a night... if it was worth it, but after talking to several mamas who delivery at the same hospital, 3 out of 4 said not worth it.
Nursery: Baby's nursery is coming together nicely. I ordered some cute removable wallpaper which I am excited to post about after installation. The bohemian look has taken a bit of a jungle theme, so that's fun. Again, I am going more masculine just in case my instincts are right. So far, I haven't gotten baby any new clothes!! I am just going to use what I had for Lincoln and then once I know boy or girl after birth, I will start buying a few cute items.
That's all for now. Thanks so much for sharing in this journey and thoughts + prayers to all of the mamas out there!
Hey all! Can't even believe I'm in the last weeks of my pregnancy. I know mamas say that the second pregnancy flies by, but this has gone at light speed. This past week has proven to be both encouraging and challenging. I have gotten back into my workout routine and am also settling nicely into our new home. We are loving our Nashville neighborhood; it feels as if at every turn or stop, I meet a new mama with kiddos who I could totally picture myself being friends with! The people here are so kind, and there are so many young families surrounding us. On the more challenging side, I developed a nasty 24 hour virus and struggled to get by being pregnant and also with little Linc around wanting to play. Suffice it to say, I tested negative for both strains of flu (praise God) and am feeling much, much better. Baby is developing at a healthy rate, weighing in around 5 pounds, although there is a minor complication that we have follow up appointments on in coming weeks. Thank you all for your support and for following. Check out my stats below:
Weight Gain: (These are my notes from a few days ago; I have an update below) 21 pounds ish. So I'm getting to the point in my pregnancy where I'm starting to feel like a big whale ha! I'm not swelling a whole lot but for some reason I feel huge.. I guess that's what an extra 21 pounds will do to a girl. Because I am getting big, it has thrown off of my diet a little bit. I don't know about anyone else, but when I feel fat and sluggish, I actually eat worse. On the flip side, when I feel thin and svelte, I eat super healthy and feel amazing. Thus, I'm starting to get that sluggish whale feeling at this point in pregnancy and am not being great about my diet. That said, docs recommend we gain an average of 30 pounds during pregnancy, so I'm right on track for that. This time around, I hoped to stay closer to 25 pounds, but hey, you really gotta do what your body wants to do.
Weight Gain Update & Flu / Virus Update: So I caught a nasty 24-hour virus Tuesday night. My stomach started feeling funny around 6pm ish. I had made salmon and Asian salad for Ry and I that night for dinner, and by the time I finished it, I couldn't stomach any of it. I started to feel not right AT ALL and bee-lined to the bathroom. After being in there for a long time, it's safe to say I caught either a virus or some sort of food poisoning. All through the night, I was literally in and out of the bathroom with a horrid stomach ache. I woke up Wednesday and felt like death with acheyness all over and that weak feeling, like you'd get with the flu. Lincoln and I sat around all day watching TV and laying on the floor reading books. Usually, we don't let him watch TV, but today had to be an exception because I couldn't gain the strength to do much else. Thankfully, we had my 32/33 week prenatal appointment scheduled at 2:30pm, which would not only get us out of the house, but would also help me understand what in the heck happened to me and how we could treat it. We arrived at the doctor and had the 32-week ultrasound first, I will go into more detail about this later in the post. I then met with the doctor who told me to get tested downstairs for the flu. She said that I was still early enough in my pregnancy to take Tami-Flu (sp?). I'm not one to take medication, especially while pregnant, so I asked her what the benefits of taking Tami-Flu are. She told me that they speed of the flu and the symptoms that go along with, making you less contagious to other and healing your body faster. She highly recommended doing so, if I in fact tested positive for the flu. They did a nasal swab in both nostrils for testing, which was SUPER uncomfortable, and I got my test results back today.... NEGATIVE! Yes! I tested negative for both strains of A and B flu. So that means the sickness with either a 24 hour virus or food poisoning. Retracing my steps back to what I ate, I can't recall anything different from what Ryan and Rhett also eat that I ate that could have given me food poisoning. Thus, I think it was a 24 hour bug. All of the said, because I couldn't eat for about 24 hours, I did lose a little over 2 pounds, which puts my at a total weight gain around 18.5 pounds. However, baby is still super healthy, coming in around 5 pounds!
Exercise: I've been pretty great at exercising, especially for where I'm at in my pregnancy. Last week, I exercised all but one day doing a combination of spinning class and step class. The step class is amazing because it's super low impact but I feel like I'm getting in some great cardio stepping on and off the box throughout the class. Not only am I getting cardio, but strength training as well. Step is definitely my favorite and is also the most manageable and comfortable workout at this point; it's comfortable on my body but I still feel like I'm getting a great workout in. Spinning is good too, but it gets a little uncomfortable sitting on the bike seat for an entire hour. I also feel a little uncomfortable in my lower regions on the bike, as if the babies head is super low (if you catch my drift). I've heard in second pregnancies, you can start dilating super early. I'm not sure if that's what is going on, but it feels a little uncomfortable. That said, I still like the spin workout to change it up during the week. I've been recommended prenatal yoga, so I may try to work that in as a progress in my pregnancy.
Nutrition: As I mentioned earlier, I've been a little bit off with my diet. Not super off, but just a little bit off. I was saying a few posts ago (and a few weeks ago) that my stomach felt so so tiny with not a lot of room for food that I was getting full super fast and also some acid reflux. Suffice it to say, that has gone away and now I feel a little bit more hungry than normal? Not sure if I'm imagining it but I feel like I can eat an extra snack mid morning and mid afternoon when I otherwise wouldn't. I've also been eating a little more dessert at night than normal. If and when I do, I try to really watch my portions or opt for a healthier dessert option like non-dairy ice cream. In the mornings, I still am sticking to my warm lemon water and green smoothie. I sometimes have a mid morning snack, then a healthier lunch and a decent sized dinner. Dessert ranges from a few bites of non-dairy Ben and Jerry's ice cream to a few bites of Cookie Butter to a few bites of Soy Vanilla Ice Cream from Trader Joe's. When with friends and there is dessert, I will eat it but only a small portion. Hey, I'm pregnant!
Pregnancy Symptoms: My lower back is a bit achey as of late. I attribute this to the weight gain and the stress of carrying a baby. Not a shocker at all. I am also starting to get a little bit of a tingly feeling in my left shoulder blade. This has happened about three times in the past week. Not sure what it's from? Maybe more stress on the body. I have a recurring injury in my upper left groin area in between my hamstring and glutes - when I was running in the beginning of my pregnancy it started to flare up again. After I stopped running, it went away but now with the extra weight gain and relaxed ligaments, it has returned. Not sure what to do as a remedy at this point. My acid reflux is pretty much non-existent. My skin is looking great but a little bit of hyper-pigmentation that I attribute to the hormones. I don't have the line down my belly yet and I haven't noticed any stretch marks - hooray! I do feel a little bit more sluggish at this point, and am sleeping like a champ through the night. Literally, the deepest sleeps ever. Getting up to go to the bathroom at night is a chore because I am so tired and my back aches as I get out of bed. When peeing, I literally feel as if I could fall asleep on the toiler (TMI) because I am in that deep of a sleep!!
32 Week Ultrasound: Ultrasounds at this point are becoming harder, in my opinion, simply because we aren't finding out the gender of the baby. I so badly want to look at our cute little one on the screen to see how he/she is developing, but at this point, I really don't want something to slip and to see something on the screen that would give away the gender. For those who didn't find out the gender of the baby, you probably totally understand! Now that we have gotten this far, I really don't want any subtle hints as to what the little baby could be. So, at the ultrasound, I spent the majority of the time looking away, unless she told me to look. There were some cool observations, including baby's hair!! The tech said that baby has a TON of hair. This came at no surprise since Lincoln had a lot of hair, as well -- and black hair too -- as did I. I expect this little one will be the same. It's funny because people often equate a baby having a lot of hair at birth to the mother having intense heartburn. I had intense heartburn with Lincoln, but haven't barely had any this time around. I'm here to debunk that myth! See image below of baby's hair:
We also saw a very prominent little foot, which you can make out here:
Just some fun new updates to share. As I said earlier, baby is measuring at a healthy, healthy 5 pounds. This weight is given with a plus or minus 15% accuracy. The ultrasound tech said that baby is about 2 weeks ahead, given the weight. She also said it's great that baby is on the heavier side at this point, but is also not too big, which might indicate a more complicated birth for mama. Since the last few ultrasounds, the doctor has been monitoring baby's kidneys. The kidneys are slightly dilated and have been since development. Sometimes this goes away as baby develops and grows, but unfortunately in our case it hasn't. The doctor wasn't too concerned because this is something that can be treated after baby is born. Often times, baby can get better developmentally, with antibiotics or with a minor surgery. At this point, we will be in one of the three camps. Asking for thoughts on prayers on this matter, although I am very confident in how God is going to protect and grow our baby! I see a urologist on February 3rd to determine how high risk we are, and at that point we will have a better idea of what will proceed. Doctor said she wasn't worried that we needed to induce labor or anything like that, but she said it's good that we caught it and that it is indefinitely treatable. All in all, baby is super healthy and wait can't wait to meet him or her in less than seven weeks!
Fetal Movement: A healthy amount of fetal movement. Baby is moving and grooving in there, but not an abnormal amount which I am happy to report. I am drinking caffeine (one latter per day) with this baby, staying within the allocated amount. Last pregnancy I drank caffeine but only in the form of green tea lattes. So, I was a little worried that the espresso caffeine would hype this baby up. At first, baby moved all of the time like whoa, but not the movement has gotten to a more normal cadence, thank goodness. Baby is hiccuping more and more, which I here is a good indicator of healthy lung development and function.
Predictions About Baby's Gender: Hmmm... I don't know!!! I literally have no clue. Some women say they just knew they were having a certain gender and knew the moment they got pregnant. Nope, not me. I am not one of those women that knows the gender, and I'm not one of those women that knows that she is pregnant before taking a pregnancy test either lol. I don't attribute this to being a bad mom or out of tune with my body because I am certainly super in tune with my body and would like to think that I am an exceptional mother, I really think it's just the fact that some women don't know! The more to be surprised about at the birth of our babe...
Thoughts About Delivery: I'm actually getting more and more excited to give birth this time around. I have this anticipation for what this baby's birth story will be, not to mention I am so excited to see what a new family dynamic will be like with two kids. Most importantly, I am so excited to feel that unreal love for baby number two. It seems almost impossible to love another like we love Lincoln, but I keep hearing that your love just expands twofold, so that'll be fun to experience. I am also praying that baby is head down and ready to go. I have an ultrasound tomorrow and will report how baby is positioned. I am pretty confident that I will have a vaginal delivery and pray for that daily, however, I am open to the possibility of other things happening ... after all, we can't predict or control our birth stories! All I know is the benefits of
Preparation for Baby: The nursery is still being assembled, but we did purchase an adorable piece of artwork to hang above baby's crib. It is from Restoration Hardware (go figure), and it is a gold metallic zebra! I can't wait to share it with you all. The nursery is coming together wonderfully and we are excited to welcome this sweet little angel.
Until next time!
Hey mamas, so you might follow The Bump and if you do, you've probably seen that they recently published their "Best Of 2017" baby products. If you haven't seen it, you can check it out here. C + I have also gone through and compiled our top "registry picks" which you can find on our site here. Both resources can be super helpful when considering what to register for and purchase before baby comes. I also wanted to hand pick some of my TOP 10 favorite baby products that I had registered for with baby #1. These are products that I used constantly with baby # 1, and am so glad that I already have handy for baby #2.
Also, if you want to check out my baby registry for baby #1 (Lincoln), see it here. I used myregistry.com and had a great experience, although there are plenty of good sites to register with including Baby List and others. I felt very confident with my product picks overall and was happy with most all of them. I will do a post soon critiquing my list and also showcasing trendy new products that I wish were available when I had Lincoln. Also -- keep in mind that we didn't have a nursery with baby #1, living in a 1 bedroom condo, so I didn't buy a ton of big ticket nursery items like a huge crib. Anyways, here we go...
1. Stokke Tripp Trapp High Chair
Yes, this item comes with a price tag at around $250 a pop, but it is really, really functional AND aesthetically amazing. I don't know about you, but I am not one of those mamas that keeps "baby stuff" lying around the house. Our home is not a kid zone, it is a family zone - that has adults AND children, and here I live, the adults run the home, and that means we get to choose what is out around the house. I have worked hard to make our home aesthetically nice because it is important to me; this means that baby stuff needs to be cleaned up and put away either in the kids' rooms or in a closet. Same goes with our high chair. The Stokke high chair - no matter what kind - is a very "pretty" high chair. I generally put mine away in the pantry (now that we have the space to do so), but when we lived in our 1 bedroom condo, I kept it in the corner... and great news, it wasn't an eye soar. Not only that, but it is very functional and grows with baby. It can be used as a kid's chair all the way until your kiddos are far past grown. Tip: don't purchase the cloth that goes on the seat, it is not necessary, as it gets VERY dirty at each eating session. Our little guy is perfectly happy sitting on the wood without the cloth and it is far easier to clean rather than having to wash the cloth after each use.
2. Ergo Baby 360 Carrier
So there are a ton of baby carriers out there, and I have heard great things about many of them including the Baby Bjorn and others. I happen to like the Ergo Baby (just because it's what I was given). Point being, be sure to BUY or register for a baby carrier. You will use this like crazy. I am so happy we have one with baby #2 now that Lincoln can walk, I will be carrying baby in this pouch-like contraption 24/7. Not to mention, having baby close by your skin is very important in the first months of life.
3. bloom baby alma Urban Folding Crib
Okay so the reason we registered for and got this crib was because we lived in our tiny one bedroom condo in Georgetown and really didn't have the space to buy a full-size crib. At first, I somewhat regretted having registered for this crib because Lincoln grew out of it at around 6 to 7 months. HOWEVER, now that we have baby #2 coming and looking back at the functionality of this crib, I am SO SO SO glad that I have it. First point being that Lincoln is still sleeping in a crib. We just purchased a full-sized crib and expect that he will be in it for AT LEAST another 6 months. This means that the baby will perfectly get to snuggle into our mini crib from birth until 6 months or beyond (depending on his or her size). This crib is AWESOME for a little one for several reasons, including the fact that it has WHEELS. Since we have hard-wood floors in our master and in common areas upstairs, it makes it super easy to wheel this crib close to our bed for nursing or into the nursery for napping and sleeping. It is soooo maneuverable and amazing for a newborn because let's face it, your babe will be in and out of your room in the beginning if you are nursing. This also saves us space on having to have TWO full-sized crib simultaneously.
4. Baby Bjorn Travel Crib
Okay, so after Lincoln grew out of his mini-crib, he slept in the Baby Bjorn Travel Crib every night until now (since we just got a regular full-size crib). This crib is so so so awesome - easy to assemble and disassemble and easy to travel with. Not only that, but it appeared to be WAY more comfortable than a Pack'N'Play. We used Pack N Plays in hotels and the mattresses were far inferior from the Baby Bjorn. Highly recommended.
5. Levana Snuza Oma Portable Movement Monitor
This thing saved my liffffeeeee as a new mama. I don't know about you, but putting my newborn to sleep with all of this talk of SIDS really freaked me out. The Levana Snuze is a little monitor that you clip onto baby's diaper before he or she goes to bed at night that will beep loudly if your little angel stops breathing (God forbid). Not only that, but if your little one skips a breath or tentatively stops breathing, the monitor will vibrate on his/her skin to wake him/her up. If baby doesn't wake up, it will beep extremely loud to alert the parents. This thing really helped me sleep at night knowing that my little one was safe and sound, and that I could be alerted if not. Literally, life saving.
6. RH Baby & Child Kids Bookrack
Ok, so I got the Pottery Barn one on my registry for Lincoln and absolutely loved it. The reason I purchased the RH baby and child one this time around is that the Pottery Barn shelf has to sit on the floor aesthetically - rather than floating. I like the look of a floating shelf AND it makes it easier for me to grab books being somewhat elevated on a wall rather than on the floor, so we went with this. Regardless of which book shelf you purchase, these things are amazing. They display your kids' books nicely and are also very functional. I love having some books out and rotating them in and out of the closet. If all of our books are in the closet, I tend to forget about them - boo.
7. My Breast Friend Nursing Pillow
A lot of mamas like the Boppy Pillow, but when I was pregnant I knew mothers who had purchased both and advised me to get the Breast Friend over the Boppy. Thus, I have used and have been VERY happy with the Breast Friend. My pediatrician had a Boppy Pillow in her office that I would use during doctor's visits and I didn't really care for it. Baby would sink into it because the cushion is so soft AND it was very hard to position baby close to your boob without the support of tightening a strap around your waist or ribs. My Breast Friend solves all of these problems. The cushion is FIRM which keeps baby positioned in the same spot, and it also comes with a strap that you can loosen or tighten around your waister/ribs to provide for even more support. I really don't know how people nurse without this thing in the beginning.
8. Bebe au Lait Nursing Cover
Again, I'm sure there are a lot of great brands out there - I just happened to register for and get this nursing cover and really loved how functional it was. The plastic insert in the neckline allows you to see baby while you are nursing - this is key, especially when you have to adjust yourself. It also allows air to refresh baby and keep him/her from overheating/suffocating in there! If you buy a nursing cover, get something that has some sort of plastic insert or other kind of insert so that baby gets air while nursing.
9. Honest Company Diaper Bag
This diaper bag was amazing given all of the compartments and the insulated pocket that allows for milk or food storage. I also loved the size - I could fit SO much in there. The material is really easy to clean too - you don't feel guilty putting in in the sink and washing the heck out of it. The bag also comes with straps that fit perfectly on my Orbit Baby Stroller, and it also wasn't so big that it didn't fit underneath the stroller. I originally registered for the Petunia Pickle backpack and got it in the mail to discover that it was hideous, HUGE and HEAVY. Nordstrom started carrying that Honest Co Diaper Bags literally a few days later, so I exchanged the Petunia and got the Honest Co bag. So glad that I did. It is still in great condition for baby #1, and has a style that is timeless with the faux leather material.
10. Angel Dear Lovey
At first, Lincoln wasn't crazy about these little lovies. I don't think I registered for them but SO MANY moms got them for me as baby gifts. I was a little annoyed because Linc really didn't care for them, and as cute as they are, they were just lying around the house or sitting in the closet. Fast forward to Linc's first birthday, and thereafter he started LOVING these things. He doesn't carry them around during the day (thank goodness) or beg for them or anything, but they are so sweet to put your kiddo down with at night. He sleeps with them every night and I rotate them in and out - there are so many cute animals to choose from. Literally, the more the merrier. Not only are they soft and plush, but they are easy to wash.
That's a wrap, mamas!! Happy purchasing :)
Welcome to "flu season"! Oh joy! Who has made it through thus far without catching the bug?! Duke and I have thus far; however, Kai man hasn't been so fortunate...as of 8pm two nights! I wrote this blog the day before yesterday morning before he got sick. haha! Great timing! But in all seriousness, these tricks do work, and sometimes once in a while someone gets sick- AKA Kai Lucca Burchell.
Despite Kai's recent 24 hour stomach flu bug (poor guy!), he has been healthy as a horse, as they say! He made it through the fall and the holiday season without the slightest cold. I attribute that to a relatively strict/consistent vitamin regimen and other healthy habits as shown below! These may seem self explanatory, but sometimes we all need a little reminder, eh? (WHEN SICK, IT IS CRUCIAL TO EAT NUTRIENT DENSE FOODS TO BOOST YOUR BODY'S IMMUNE SYSTEM. CEREAL AND COFFEE DON'T REALLY FALL INTO THIS CATEGORY). : )
SOME OF MY KEY STEPS TO PREVENT SICKNESS:
1. MAINTAIN A WHOLE FOOD DIET
2. WATCH YOUR SUGAR INTAKE- yes, this can include too much natural sugar. Watch your intake altogether.
(ie.) "fruit" juice, high sugar fruits such as grapes, pineapple, bananas, mangos, etc. ***ESPECIALLY when sick!
3. GET SUFFICIENT REST
4. MANAGE YOUR STRESS- bad stress can suppress your immune system. If you know anyone suffering from adrenal fatigue this is a great article! How Does Stress Affect Your Immune System?
5. TAKE YOUR VITAMINS- CHOOSE WISELY AND DO YOUR RESEARCH. SO MANY COMPANIES PRODUCE VITAMINS THAT ARE NOT GOOD FOR YOUR BODY!
MY RECOMMENDED FAVORITE BRANDS FOR THE WHOLE FAMILY:
Baby 0-3: Jarrow Bifidus (mix in a little fresh squeezed juice, breast milk, etc, or add to any pureed food- no sugar added applesauce always does the trick!)
Child 4+: VSL #3- 1/2 capsule daily (mix in liquid or pureed food). When sick, use full capsule daily
Adult: VSL #3- 1-6 Capsules daily (more when sick)
2. VITAMIN C
Baby 0-3: 100 mg Shaklee Chewable Viatmin C- CONSULT YOUR NUTRITIONIST/DR.
***DOES YOUR BABY HAVE A RED BUM? This could be the result of too much vitamin C, so give your baby the dosage it needs. (No teeth? No problem. Simply crush vitamin and put in liquid or pureed food)
Child 3+: 100 mg Shaklee Chewable Viatmin C
*1 chewable tablet in am and 1 in pm
Adult: 500mg THORNE Vitamin C with Flavanoids ("Flavonoids are a diverse group of phytonutrients (plant chemicals) found in almost all fruits and vegetables" -livescience.com
*When pregnant- 2 in am and 2 in pm (again, blood work is very helpful when deciphering each dosage)
4. Multi Vitamin
Child 2-3: Pure Encapsulations "Pure Pals" (no added sugar or fructose- natural cherry flavor)
*1 chewable tablet daily
Child 4+: Pure Encapsulations "Pure Pals"
*2 chewable tablets daily- 1AM AND 1PM
Adult: Shaklee VitaLea Iron Formula-
*1x daily (2x daily for pregnancy)
Kyolic Aged Liquid Garlic Extract
Baby 0-3: - about 7-10 drops daily (w/ fresh squeezed juice, breast milk, other liquids, honey, or pureed food)
Child 4+: 1/4 tsp daily (2x if sick)
Adult: +1/4 tsp daily
4. COD LIVER OIL
Rosita Extra Virgin Cod Liver Oil
Amazing for all ages- even babies! Start young so they get used to the taste!
Please remember to consult your nutritionist or doctor especially when pregnant. This works for me and my family, so find what works best for you!
All my love!
Hey ya'll! So I'm 31 weeks pregnant and trucking along. Can't believe I only have 9 weeks left until this little angel is welcomed into our lives!! I have been a little stressed as of late, working on the new house and trying to get as much prepared and furnished/finished before the baby comes. Lately, I've had to remind myself that it is okay if I don't get everything in line. I am one of those people, unfortunately, that loves and needs to have EVERYTHING organized. With homes and ordering furniture and furnishings, it is a process (not to mention a lot of items I want are backordered - boo). So, I've had to remind myself that I need to be patient. I find myself praying for God to takeover in a lot of instances. I've been having feelings of being overwhelmed and feeling a little bit out of control - whether it's regarding the home or now having not one but TWO children at home and as a stay-at-home mom. I know that everything will be perfect and these are the prayers that I have prayed to be answered my entire life (having a home and a growing family - true story), so I try to remind myself to appreciate it - my goodness!! It's funny, sometimes when you get what you prayed for you can still have those feelings of uneasiness and stress. While it is everything I want and I know this, I just feel it is a lot all at once. I have felt these feelings more often since being away on vacation and being "removed" from being able to tackle our home - which I think God did on purpose (keeping us away for 2.5 weeks) from our new home - and not to mention the fact that I forgot my cell phone at home - God laughs! Anyways, I know that everything is as it should be and in most instances I am more than thankful to be in the position I am in. Enough about that - and more on my current pregnancy stats and a little sneak peak of how the nursery is coming together...
Weight Gain: 20 lbs weight gain at this point - ah. I was going to say 'I can't believe it', but actually I can -- given the holidays and all of the extra food I have been consuming. Not even blaming it on pregnancy or the baby, I definitely enjoyed myself over the holiday with family. That included a lot of eating out and desserts, in quantities that were likely over justified. But hey! I enjoyed it :) Since my last 27 week appointment (over a four week period or so), I gained four pounds. So that is in line with the recommended 1 lbs per week weight gain. Now that we are back home, and back to somewhat of a routine, I am hoping my weight will stabilize. As of now, my appetite is very consistent with how it is while not pregnant. I may be slightly more hungry than normal, and if I go for long periods without eating I begin to feel nauseous rather than hungry.
Exercise: I haven't been able to exercise as much as I've wanted to. I probably exercised over our vacation every three days or so. I hope to get back to the YMCA with Lincoln - participating in classes like spinning, step and yoga. I'm physically feeling good and now more energized than I was while in the altitude in Colorado. Therefore, gaining energy to exercise shouldn't be a problem. As of late, I've had a little bit more strain on my lower back. I believe this is from moving packages and getting our house prepared (doing things I shouldn't necessarily be doing at almost 8 months pregnant). With a toddler around, I do get plenty of movement chasing him around the house and around stores. Not to mention, we now have a two-story home, which means STAIRS... so I am constantly going up and down the stairs - which is good. I'm trying not to stress too much about exercise, given that I'm so pregnant, but I also feel way better when I do. I also feel as if exercise will help my body recover faster from delivery and will also help give me the strength for a great delivery. However, looking back on my delivery with baby number one, I rarely exercised (besides brisk walking), and had an amazing delivery!
Nutrition: Like I touched upon, my diet hasn't been the greatest over the holidays. But whose has?! :) I'm trying to get back into my routine of warm lemon water in the morning, which really regulates my blood sugar and acid reflux, and a green smoothie. Then a healthy lunch and decent dinner. Since we've been home, I've been able to stick to this! I'm not perfect with my diet, as Cate + I believe in somewhat of an 80/20 principle -- 80% of the time keep your diet clean with whole and organic foods, and 20% of the time, you should moderate with cravings and leniency - so a little bit of sweets at night won't kill you. Plus it's good for the soul :)
Pregnancy Symptoms: My acid relux has gotten A LOT better. I attribute this to being home and now on more of a regular diet with portion control and blander flavors. I'm still a little more tired than normal, i.e. when I wake up in the morning, I still have to lay in bed for some time to get myself started. Pre-pregnancy, I didn't have to do this - I was excited to get out of bed and tackle the day. I'm getting a little more hyper-pigmentation on my face. I got this with Lincoln and after having him it faded SLOWLY. I'd say once I got pregnant with baby number two, it started to fade. Unfortunately, now it's coming back. That said, I have had ZERO acne this pregnancy - YES! My skin is a perfect consistency -- it's just the pigmentation that is affecting it. In terms of swelling, I'm not really swelling much this time around. My wedding ring still fits perfectly and my feet and hands feel pretty normal - yay! I remember, I took my wedding ring off at 7 months with baby #1.
Fetal Movement: Lots of movement - not overkill tho. At first I was sure it was a boy, given how much this baby moved! Now, I'm thinking girl?
Predictions About Baby's Gender: Once again I don't really know. I was the same way with Lincoln. People say "you have a feeling"... but not me - ha! And I will say that I bonded GREAT with Lincoln, so that really has nothing to do with bonding... I just don't know what the gender is. Despite not knowing, we love this baby tenfold!! The nursery decor is neutral but is starting to go slightly more girly -- but I think that's just a matter of doing my best with decorating a gender neutral nursery. Most things "baby" and "nursery" tend to look more girly. Who knows at this point tho... I believe there are pros and cons to having either a boy or girl, and that it's all what you make of it, but I do think it would be nice to have both boys and girls... but also cool to have only boys. If we don't get a girl this time, I think we may try for baby number three (depending on the workload of two).
Thoughts About Delivery: I pre-registered with the hospital which was SUPER easy. I didn't realize how easy it was to go online and pre-register... I did ask my doc a few questions about what to expect for delivery. The biggest quesiton I had was whether she would be delivering my baby. When I delivered at Georgetown Univeristy Hospital and through my prenatal care, I rotated physicians because this is how they routinely did it. I was also prepared to not expect the doctors I had seen through prenatal care to be present at my delivery - and they weren't. I ended up with a doctor that I had neither seen nor met.. and he also was rarely in the delivery room during my labor and delivery - it was the nurses and residents that did the grunt work - and they were amazing!! Originally, on my birth plan I had written that I didn't want residents in the room, but after my experience with it, it changed my perspective. If you have a normal delivery, it really shouldn't matter who is in the room so much (unless you have a bad nurse or resident - which I'm sure you wouldn't). After this, I felt confident delivering my baby in most any situation, that is, in a hospital!! I would never opt for a home birth and I would never opt for a natural delivery, unless it just happened to work out that way. For me, there is way too much that can potentially go wrong during birth and I would indefinitely want doctors around me. Also, the pain of contractions with my first birth were way too intense around 5 to 6cm dilation, so at this point, I am definitely opting for an epidural. On the flip side, I have heard stories with birthing second children that your body is more acclimated and prepared to give birth the second time around, and not only is birth usually faster but it can also be easier (in terms of pain of contractions)... so we shall see, but as or now, I will opt for the epidural.
Preparation for Baby: The nursery is coming together!! The tones in the nursery are greys, golds, beiges and eventually a pop of color. It has a rustic and bohemian feel to it. I've gotten pieces from buybuy Baby, Gabby Home, Home Goods, Restoration Hardware and Pottery Barn. Lately, I've really been trying to mix up retailers in order to get a mix of "looks." Check out a sneak peak below - I've updated the look since the last post. Again, I have A LOT of work to do and some of the elements, like pillows and accents, I may add after baby is born when we know the gender. Until the next time!!