Monday, March 29, 2010

34 week, 3 day doctor visit

Today was my 34 week, 3 day doctor visit, and everything went well. I am up a total of 25 pounds. I gained four pounds in the past four weeks and Dr. Chwe was pleased. Baby's heartbeat was 160, which is normal. My blood pressure is still good and I don't have excessive swelling, so that is all good. I start my weekly appointments next week. He'll start checking for dilation then, although he said that he doesn't expect much as this is my first baby.

I asked if he could tell if Baby's head is down and in the correct position. He said that she does have her head down. I asked how he knew, and he said there isn't much room for her to hide in there and he can tell just by looking when I lay back. Cool! One of my worries allayed! I thought it is her bottom I feel up near my ribs, but I wasn't sure.

And a photo of me and the dogs...just to have a photo to add to the post:

Friday, March 26, 2010

34 weeks, a big belly, a dirty mirror, and the sweetest little bathing suit ever!

The cute stage is OVER!!! I think that I scheduled our maternity photos too late! Oh, well! For the record, though, here is Baby at 34 weeks:

Stacey sent her gift for Baby in the mail this week, and along with the practical sippy cups and spoons and play yard sheet, were the sweetest little bathing suit and the cutest little onsies! Thanks, Stacey!

In other news, we got a spot at the Children's Program at UA's Child Research Development Center for Baby starting August 1. (The website does not do it justice.) This was a highly coveted position, and we are thrilled to get it as we were not satisfied with any of the other daycares we looked at. Thursday morning, Nicholas and I spent two hours with the program's director--asking questions, getting information, and touring the facilities, which are fantastic. They will accept a 6 hour day as full time (they only do full time), so I could, if my boss agrees, do a 75% workload and be with Baby more than my current schedule allows. They have nursing rooms, so I could ride my bike over and nurse during the day. Most of the research projects don't start until Baby is around 18 months, and all research projects are opt-in, so that won't come until later.

And, in pregnancy news, I am in the last six weeks now! I am having a very difficult time making it through a day without a nap, and sleeping is becoming increasingly difficult. Baby seems happy, though! She is moving and wiggling much of every day. Our next appointment is Monday, and because of scheduling conflicts, it will have been almost four weeks since our last one. I'm hoping he says I am measuring huge and baby will probably come at about 37 weeks! Not really, Baby and I are still set on May 1st for her birthday, which is 39 weeks.

Monday, March 22, 2010

The Bunco Baby Shower and family weekend!

We had so much fun on Saturday playing Bunco at my second baby shower. My sisters Stephanie and Heidi, my mom Dorothy, and my niece Abby and nephew Craig came in on Friday to throw the shower and visit with Nicholas and me pre-baby. Everything looked beautiful, and I think everyone had a really good time!

My friend Juliet drove all the way from Clemson (via Hilton Head where her husband was working on a show) just for the shower and to visit. It was a total surprise, and I cried when I saw her car outside our house!

Bunco was a great idea because you change partners and tables frequently, so I was able to talk to everyone who came to the shower!

The cake was super cute and delicious!

And I really was showered with gifts for the baby! Thanks everyone!!!

Christine and Elizabeth made an amazing quilt together. It is so nice that I feel like I should hang it up, but Christine says quilts are for using, so we will! I love it, girls!!

This is Abby pre-shower in her Liberty of London dress (you'll see that I bought a matching one for Baby and it is hanging on the door frame in a previous picture). Wherever Abby was this weekend, so, too, was Puck! Nicholas took Abby and Craig to UA to ride bikes and then out for ice cream while the shower was going on. He's a good man--two kids and two dogs for more than two hours!

Juliet spent the night in town, and the next day we all met at IHOP for breakfast! Since I didn't get a picture of us together during the shower, I had to record her coming so far!!! I'm SO HAPPY you came, Juliet!!

We dyed Easter eggs on Sunday with the kids, walked/biked/strolled to the playground in the neighborhood, and watched a couple of movies on Sunday. (Craig had a fever Saturday night that continued into Sunday. He just didn't feel well much of the trip, so I don't have very many pictures of him.) This one is "the girls" on Sunday night.

Nicholas hung out with us, too. He got down his Breyer horses from when he was growing up and played with Abby. I told him that after this shower, I feel like we are ready for Baby. He said, "I'm glad you feel that way!"

And on Monday morning, in her sweet Clemson pajamas, we found Abby again with Puck. This time on his bed. What a sweet girl!

My amazing mom painted the nursery wall in less than half a day!! She used white chalk to sketch out the tree, and then painted it in all on Saturday morning before the shower. It looks fantastic!!

Nicholas and I will hang the mobiles and the "Sweet Lambie" quilt above the crib and changing table soon. Just a few more things to do pre-baby...three more classes (Natural Childbirth, Infant Care, and Infant CPR), get the car seat bases installed in our cars and have the fire department inspect them, and pack the bag for the hospital!! Not too much!

Thursday, March 18, 2010

The coming together of the nursery...

Nothing has been hung, the curtains aren't made (because they didn't have enough of the fabric we want, so I will try again next week when they get another shipment), and the mural is not yet painted... But, the nursery is coming together!!

(Of course, I know that nothing goes in the crib with baby when she sleeps there! But the little pillows are super cute!)

(My friend Stacey, who works at the Target headquarters as an optimization analyst and is a Target fanatic, tipped me off on these "Liberty of London" bins. I think they are just perfect. But, Nicholas has veto power when he gets back!)

(Just to give an idea of the flow of the room...)

(The fabric on the rocking chair is that for the curtains. Soon, I will have those made...)

(And I finish with a shot of Baby and me with our first professional haircut in over two years. Man, is it short!! I figure it will be about the right length by the time Baby arrives. I'm 32 weeks, 6 days today...)

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Sharing a "room" and making a room

I caught Ringo and Puck the other evening sharing one of their beds. And now I've seen them do it several times. So cute!

I found this duvet cover/coverlet on sale at Belk, and decided it was the perfect thing for our bedroom. It is! We slept under it last night and it is warm and soft, and holds our down comforter perfectly. Love it! Of course, my pictures don't do it justice...and I should probably have a brown throw at the end of the bed to complete the look. If you are wondering, Ringo was antagonizing Puck and Puck was hiding under the bed. Nicholas was trying to get him out.

The nursery is coming along. The crib and changing table are put together, the bedding is on, and the changing table is stocked with diapers, burp clothes, and onsies. Everything is so cute!! But, the arrangement needs work, the curtains need to be put up, we haven't hung the "Sweet Lambie" quilt, and we are waiting for Mom to paint the mural on the wall. So, pictures after all that occurs. Hopefully next week by this time!!

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Getting closer!!

So, the nursery is now painted in cream. The rocking chair is assembled and ready for lulling Baby to sleep. The little lamb swing is set. The crib bedding is ready to go into the crib as soon as we get it assembled. A glaring ommision was that we had no mobile. Since the "Sweet Lambie" bedding is gender neutral and our only splurges in pink have been the pink bins for storing Baby's stuff in the changing table, we decided to get something really sweet for the mobile... I had been eyeing this mobile, and today while I was in Birmingham, I stopped by PBK and picked up two -- one for over the crib and one for over the changing table.

It's not a "nursery" mobile, as you can see from the picture of the little girl's room above, but it is beautiful. These are rare cases where Pottery Barn's pictures do not done their product justice. The butterflies are made from hand-painted feathers. The picture above, as far as I can tell, has four mobiles...there are nine butterflies on each.

And I have booked our maternity photo session for April 5. I'll be 35 weeks then, so I hope I am not too swollen... Check out the photographer's work: Lindsey R Smith Photography. If all goes well, we will have her do all Baby's first year pictures.

Friday, March 12, 2010

32 weeks and shower 2 spoiler

Here we are at 32 weeks, and my belly is getting huge!! I'm excited about it, though. I'm still enjoying Baby's kicks and squirms most of the day and night. She is really active, and I can see the kicks through my blouse at work when I am sitting at my desk. Yesterday, I hugged Nicholas and he felt Baby kick at his belly!

I am getting pretty swollen, though. Two nights ago I was on my feet for a few hours--walking the dogs, making dinner, etc.--and by the time I took my socks off for bed, the radius of my calves was about an inch larger above the sock line than below. That is a disturbing sight!!

My sleep continues to be interrupted. I think I my body can sleep uninterrupted for about 2 - 3 hours at a time. I wake up for bathroom breaks, hunger, and being uncomfortable. Usually, it doesn't take longer than 30 minutes to fall back to sleep.

And... the shower 2 spoiler...

Mom and Steph sent Baby her new stroller and car seat!! We love it! We put it together on Wednesday night. I love the colors and that the car seat is the number one safety rated car seat by Consumer Reports. Awesome! Thanks Mom and Steph! I'll put a bow on it for shower number 2 and act surprised!!

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Skin: an amazing organ

I have a new appreciation for my skin. It is amazing how it can accommodate my growing belly, my swollen fingers and ankles, and just my increased blood and weight in general. So far, I'm lucky to report no real problems with stretch marks...maybe I can see a faint white line here or there, but nothing major.

I am exhausted this morning as I write this (see picture above). I have not been sleeping well and we had thunderstorms last night. Ringo and Puck were unsettled and whiny. I am becoming more tired in general, and I haven't been able to sneak in a nap (or even a decent night's rest) in a few days. Maybe tonight...

On the naming front, the dogs suggested the name Pingo Ruck for the baby. I've vetoed, but they are insistent.

I went to my third pre-birth class. This was the one on breastfeeding. It was informative, packed with pregnant women and a few token husbands, and made me decide that I need more than just a hand pump. The lactation consultant was very knowledgeable and reassuring. It was good to know what would happen regarding seeing her (or one of the other lactation consultants) post birth -- she will check in on me and the baby each day we are in the hospital and write a plan for breastfeeding. Then, the baby and I go back two days after being released from the hospital for a weigh-in for the baby, checking for jaundice, and making sure we aren't having problems breastfeeding. This occurs again a few days later. I like that there is already a plan to make sure we are doing well. The class had prop babies that we practiced holding in the various breastfeeding positions. We also watched a DVD about the various positions, potential problems, etc. It was more informative than I expected given that I had already read "The Womanly Art of Breastfeeding."

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

30 week, 5 day doctor visit

We had our 30 week, 5 day doctor visit today. Everything continues to go well for me and baby. The nurse was surprised by my low blood pressure: 110 over 56, but as it has run low, she said it was fine. I am up 21 pounds now, and Dr. Chwe says that is a good amount--not too much and not too little. Baby's heartbeat was amazingly strong and clear. At first the nurse couldn't find it, but I told her that baby was balled up on my left side and when she moved the instrument over there, we heard her: 157 beats per minute. Fast, but normal. They say baby's heartbeat fluctuates a lot and one check could give 120 and the next it could be 160. (Between 120 and 160 is "normal.")

I asked Dr. Chwe what's next, and he said the next milestone will be at 36 weeks when he starts checking for cervical dilation. Smooth sailing until then. My next visit is in three weeks since he is out of town in two.

Nicholas and I also finished up our interviewing of pediatricians today. We saw three in all, but one has a partner and another is in a group if six. Honestly, we really liked all three, so our decision will probably be made on facilities and convenience for when Baby comes.

Monday, March 1, 2010

Shower number 1!

The trip to Kentuckiana was a success. One night at Jane's, one night at my parent's, and one night at Bill's. Jane threw an awesome shower for Baby on Saturday. Lots of people, great decorations, beautiful and delicious cake! I only have a couple of photos...I am waiting for everyone to send me their's. Here's what I have:

Thanks, everyone, for coming! I had so much fun seeing everyone! Thanks to Nicholas's cousin, Marti, for traveling all the way from Evansville when she was 38 weeks pregnant just for this shower!

This next one was from my parents' house Saturday evening. Craig and Abby had lots of questions about "the bump." Abby kept telling the baby, "Wake up, Baby!" Then she would listen at my belly and say, "I heard her. She said, "Mama!""