28 July 2010

24 Weeks

24 weeks aka 6 months today! This is the last month in the second trimester.

I had my 24 week doctor's appointment this morning. I feel good and no medical red flags which is always a relief. I gained more weight this month which is slightly disappointing but not surprising since we were on vacation and I thoroughly enjoyed more food than usual.

I'm on track to gain 35 lb total if I gain a healthy 4 lb each month until my due date:

Start: 108 lb

April 7th: 112 lb

May 5th: 114 lb

June 2nd: 116 lb

June 29th: 119 lb

July 7th: 123 lb

July 28th: 127 lb (19 pounds total gain)

August (7 mo): 23 lb gain

September (8 mo): 27 lb gain

October (9 mo): 31 lb gain

November (10 mo): 35 lb gain

28-40 lb is considered healthy weight gain during pregnancy. 25-35 lb is recommended for women with a healthy BMI prior to pregnancy. I was teetering on the low end of a healthy BMI, so I'll be very pleased with 35 and comfortable with 40.


It's always fun hearing baby's heartbeat and seeing her on the ultrasound. She's actually so big now that you can't see all of her in one shot. She was rolling all over the place and I can feel it but still very lightly. That's because I have an anterior placenta (it's sitting in the front right under my belly) which makes an extra cushion between me and the baby so I won't feel strong kicks until later, unlike women who have a posterior placenta. This is very common, and just means that I have to wait a little longer for those bruising strong punches. By 28 weeks, she'll be so big that the anterior placenta won't matter.

26 July 2010

Baby's First Sleep Spot

It seems crazy to provide two sleeping locations for a newborn. I mean, as masters of the house we only have one! But two spots can actually make sense.
A crib is where she'll sleep for the first couple years of life; with adjustable heights it can go from newborn to toddler and beyond. A convertible crib with the proper equipment can be used into the teen years.
But those first weeks of feeding and comforting every two hours, I'm not traipsing back and forth to the baby's room. And it's right next door.

Enter the bassinet. It's a small sleeping spot for a newborn that can sit next to your bed or wherever you like, allowing for quick and easy access for feedings. And the ability for a nervous mom to sneak a peak in between.
A major drawback is that they become useless once baby is old enough to sleep in the crib, and I hate a purchase that is only good for such a short time. A perk: they are compact and mostly mobile, so you can move them to whatever part of the house you want during the day. My major pet peeve is the lack of selection in terms of how they look. Most of them are downright foofy and prissy looking.

Like this white and frilly number. I guess the blue is for a boy, but what father would allow his son to shack up in this?

This one by Fisher Price is a gliding model. Less ruffles and the canopy is cute, but it's super fancy for a newborn human who is pooping, peeing, and extracting breast milk with pirannha suction 24/7.

This handwoven bassinet is made by Land of Nod which is owned by Crate and Barrel. (And which I love, but they don't have any retail stores in California. :-( Online only for now.) I love many of their things and while this isn't the worst bassinet, the huge bedskirt and lack of later function don't make it a must-have. I give it props for not being too frilly. The rocker is nice, but I've read that now a side-to-side rocking motion is preferred for soothing as opposed to front-to-back.

These are called Moses baskets, usually a cheaper bassinet option. My research has told me that these are not recommended due to their flimsy construction (easy for baby to roll out) and because they must sit on the floor. How about a little bending and scraping to pick up baby at 3am? Once again, frilly. Everything has ruffles!

This Graco bassinet is part of their Pack N Play collection but designed to function as a newborn sleeper. Finally, something that might have another use! But it's small, so baby won't be able to play in this for too long. More ruffles and frills!


A combination playard and bassinet is a good option for those who don't want a useless piece of baby furniture before the first tooth appears. The right one provides a place for a newborn to sleep wherever it fits, and it converts to a comfy playpen later. Many are easy to break down and portable, so you also have a travel sleep and play spot.


Initially we chose the Chicco Lullaby Playard, which has a second level and soft mobile, designed for newborn sleeping. It's a little pricier, but it has wonderful safety reviews and a real use later on in baby's life. It does have some drawbacks though- it is a bit heavy and rather large, so if you are really crunched on space it might still be too big. And while some parents reviewed it as easy to transport, others felt it was too heavy to be worth it.

In the end, we decided on the Graco Pack N Play Playard with Newborn Napper and Changing Table. Consumer and acquaintance reviews told us the newborn napper insert was ideal as a snug spot for a newborn, while the changing table right next to it was great for those first nights changing diapers. Both are removable to reveal two levels for sleep and playing later in life. The Pack N Play is also smaller and lighter than Chicco's Playard, a bonus since we have limited space in our home.

It's also worth nothing that in many cases, a strict bassinet can be as costly as these combos, without the additional functionality. They are often fancy and ornate (as you can see), making the added expense even more steep. To each his own of course.

25 July 2010


Decisions decisions

We started out with four paint samples, all different shades of purple. The first looked almost white, the second and fourth were pretty pinky, and the third was quite blue. We didn't love any of them so we went back for paint sample #5 and #6.

We both like these much better and I had been thinking a paler hue would be the one. Today I'm wondering if the darker (which isn't as blue as it appears in the photo) would be prettier. Any thoughts? Both are Glidden paints, Lilac Bouquet on the left, Iced Purple on the right.

23 July 2010

Baby Names

The Social Security Administration posts lists of the most popular baby names every year. In 2009, these were the most popular names:

1. Jacob
2. Ethan
3. Michael
4. Alexander
5. William
6. Joshua
7. Daniel
8. Jayden
9. Noah
10. Anthony

1. Isabella
2. Emma
3. Olivia
4. Sophia
5. Ava
6. Emily
7. Madison
8. Abigail
9. Chloe
10. Mia

What's even cooler is that you can also access the most popular names from any year dating back to 1879. For example, let's try 100 years ago. The most popular baby names in 1910:

1. John
2. James
3. William
4. Robert
5. George
6. Joseph
7. Charles
8. Frank
9. Edward
10. Henry

1. Mary
2. Helen
3. Margaret
4. Dorothy
5. Ruth
6. Anna
7. Elizabeth
8. Mildred
9. Marie
10. Alice

Times change. Although I'd say boys' names today are still pretty traditional, whereas names for girls have become more creative and well, pretty, as opposed to Biblical.

The name we've chosen for our daughter is not very common, although it has been gaining in popularity over the past five years. It was in the 800s in 2005, the 600s in 2006, 300s in 2007 and 200s in 2008. In 2009 it was between #150 and #160 on the most popular list. Hazard a guess? :-)

21 July 2010

23 Weeks

1 week away from 6 months. Woo hoo!!

This top is one of my favorites right now, partly because it is not maternity and it still fits which makes me feel good. :-) Here's the first belly shot. Pregnant bellies are cute but I think they are better looking when covered.

As you can see size fluctuates throughout the day. Until now I've taken pictures at the end of the day; I took these at about 10:30 am, before lunch. I think I look smaller here than in the photos from a few weeks ago. Food and liquids definitely cause expansion. For consistency I'll try to do pictures in the morning from now on.


The past few days, Baby's movement has become stronger- when I'm trying to go to sleep. She's awake at night and seems to be doing somersaults as I'm settling down for the night. And again after my 4:00am bathroom trip which is just a little annoying. I'm not a nocturnal person, so I'm hoping this little habit won't last the entire remaining 17 weeks.

19 July 2010

Don't Bother with Manicures

At this point I need to give up trying to keep my fingers polished and nice. I keep my nails short and they are growing so fast that I need to file twice a week. Any polish looks raggedy in two or three days. Considering getting an acrylic set to keep them a little nicer, I haven't done that since high school.

18 July 2010

22 Weeks, 4 Days

I've gotten noticeably bigger the past few days. It's hot out today, boy am I thankful I'm not farther along now because I'd be that much more uncomfortable. My feet are a bit swollen despite sitting for much of the afternoon, it must be from the temperature. I'm feeling tired more easily; I pushed my workout a little too hard this morning I think- it would have been a piece of cake normally, but I think my lung capacity has decreased because my heart rate shot much higher and more quickly. That may be why I've felt sleepy and lazy today. And its Sunday. And it was my brother's birthday so we spend the day at my parents' house where I ate Mom food for lunch and tea. :-) Grilled steak, pasta risotto, roasted broccoli, and apple pie. Ha! Maybe that's why I'm feeling bigger.
Before I was pregnant, I consumed more on the weekends because it was treats time, and less during the week. In the end it all evened out. I'm following a similar pattern now, so I will probably feel less like an elephant by Tuesday.

14 July 2010

Happy 3-Year Anniversary

3 years ago today, Ray and I got married.
I can't believe it's been that long, and that next year we'll have an 8-month-old to celebrate with us. We are so blessed.
And I am so hungry and can't wait to go out to dinner tonight! French creole followed by self-serve yogurt, woo hoo for treats in the middle of the week!


12 July 2010

Belly Button

I've been debating whether or not my belly button is going to pop out during this pregnancy, and I'm pretty sure it will.

All the stretching can cause many or most womens' "innies" to turn into "outies"- at least temporarily. I have an innie belly button, and it's fairly deep so I wasn't sure it would happen. It's still deep but I can actually see the bottom of the button where I haven't before. So I'm betting it's a matter of time.

TMI? Hey, I'm not talking about the gas and constipation, just belly buttons.

09 July 2010

The Crib- First Step in Nursery Making


Ray and I picked and ordered our crib and changing table shortly before the babymoon. After much searching and one false pick, we selected the Kendall Fixed Gate 3-in-1 crib and the Catalina Extra-Wide Dresser/Changing Table (both made by Pottery Barn Kids).

The pieces were supposed to arrive in late July and early August, but surprise surprise, the crib was ready early and delivered today! I did some rearranging in the room so we could put it exactly where it will go, and the delivery service assembled it for us which was a big plus.

Here's a shot of the room now:

The baby's room will take over what has been the workout room up to now. Ray also had weights and a bench in here, but they have been cleared out to make room for the crib. I hadn't planned on starting the conversion process for a while yet, but with the crib it's starting to be set in motion. All of these things will be gone- the weights, the TV, the mirror, the pictures on the wall, and the carpet. Painting the walls is probably next on the list, but I will be able to continue exercising in here for another two months or so (I hope).

For now, I keep going into the room just to look at the crib sitting there.

08 July 2010

Craving Alert

Chicken Shawerma Wrap, with tomatoes, onions, and garlic sauce on pita bread. From a middle eastern market near my house.

Result: will probably have to surpress it. Maybe tomorrow night, since its Friday.

Two Realizations

We returned from our babymoon trip to Cabo San Lucas on Tuesday night; it was a great 6 days and 5 nights. We ate well, relaxed lots, and came back rested and brown. I'm certainly more camera-shy now that I'm pregnant, so we have less pictures this time around. I took so many on our first trip two years ago that I still have all the memories captured.

We stayed in the same place, Pueblo Bonito Sunset Beach resort. It's about as far from the airport in Cabo as you can get, about an hour drive, and the resort is set on a cliff on the other side of the town. The sister resort Pacifica Holistic Spa is right next door and shuttles run every half hour, so we had access to a different scene when we wanted.

I had a great time but am very happy to be home and back to my regular routine. There were two major things that I realized on this trip that I'd like to share with you.

1. Your skin changes when you are pregnant- it's much more sensitive!!

I have dark olive skin that tans easily and is less likely to burn. To be sure I do burn, but only when I've been sloppy or neglectful in my sunscreen application. On the first day of our trip I amply applied sunscreen everywhere before going outside, and it was actually a bit cold and windy that day so I spent some of it covered up. Also because I'm pregnant I couldn't lay down on my tummy so the front of my body got much more exposure. Because of all these factors I didn't reapply as much, and I burned. Kind of bad. Not happy.
Yes, the second morning I woke up and I was hurting. My poor tummy was red, also my knees and shins, the tops of my feet, and a bit around my bra line. It hurt! It wasn't harmful to the baby, but I was hurting much more than any sunburn I can remember. I had a prenatal massage scheduled that morning, but that was out of the question so I rescheduled it for our last day. The rest of the trip I kept my tummy covered and reapplied SPF 45, oh, every 15 minutes or so. I also slathered myself with lotion morning and night. By the last day I felt much better, and now 6 days later the burns are gone and I have a few peely spots and that's it.

When you're in the sun a lot or when it's dry the most important thing is to hydrate hydrate hydrate. After burning I needed even more because my skin was so parched. I bought much more bottled water than I would have were I not pregnant, which leads me to realization #2 . . . .

2. Access to clean bathrooms is really important

Staying hydrated is really important in regular life, but particularly when you are pregnant. Spending a couple of days in the sun makes it that much more crucial. Couple lots and lots of fluids with a baby bouncing up and down on your bladder (and she's definitely bouncing now) and you'll be forming a very personal relationship with any and all restrooms.
Pueblo Bonito is a beautiful family of resorts, meticulously maintained and boasting some of the best service and attention to detail that I've experienced in my travels. This attention to detail stretched all the way down to every restroom onsite, even the ones located by the beach and pool. Every single one was perfectly maintained- clean, pleasant smelling, well stocked, and accessible. Even when seated on the other side of the pool, the bathroom wasn't far away and I'd visit it 7 or 8 times in a morning. This could have been really unpleasant in a smelly or messy spot, so I was incredibly grateful for the perfumes, clean floors and toilets, and ample towels and soap.