Thursday, December 31, 2009

Goodbye 2009

I can't believe 2009 is almost over. This next year will be bringing so many changes - most of them which revolve around the new baby. Banjo's birthdate will be in 2010. It seems odd to think of it. I look at my friends who have children and I have such an odd mixture of excitement and panic. I'm thrilled to be able to meet my baby and experience all of the joys that go along with it. But I feel a little anxious about not knowing what to expect with the baby. I'm well aware that certain things will change, such as me not being able to go out after work with no notice so things like grocery shopping, any other shopping, dinner or drinks (drinks...what are drinks? I miss that) or concerts and plays after work are a thing of the past. Not to say those things won't ever happen, rather it will take a bit more planning and preparation. There are so many unknowns ahead of us that I won't feel ready for even after reading every single book, magazine article and blog around. Every baby will be different and I hope Banjo is not a terror.

I am looking forward to taking some time off of work after the baby's born but I'm also worried that I'll miss working and being around people. Banjo will be born at a great time of the year because I'll be able to take him for walks around the neighborhood.

I'll be ringing in the new year at our friend's house with some fondue and drinks (sparkling cider for me). My great grandmother always said you shouldn't be home on New Year's Eve - you should always go out somewhere. I've tried to make it a habit every year but that will likely change after Banjo's born. My family also used to have some type of seafood on New Year's Eve for good luck. Since Pete hates seafood most years I've managed to bring my good luck with a fish sandwich from McDonald's. Not quite what we used to do but it seems to have brought me better luck in the last few years than when I've had some expensive seafood. I've also heard that 2 grapes is good luck. I'm not sure of the story behind why. But I'll take whatever good luck I can get.

I have the highest expectations that 2010 will be an incredible year for me and for all of my friends and family! Happy 2010!!

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

26 weeks

I’m at the tail end of my 26th week. Starting the 27th week this Friday. According to my doctor’s visit, Banjo has already turned so he’s in the right position with his little head facing down. Here’s an idea of what he looks like about now. Definitely not a lot of room in there. I am almost constantly feeling his little feet and elbows poke and prod. Last night I was looking at pictures in one of my pregnancy books and we were trying to figure out his exact position at the moment given where I was feeling him move. It’s kind of weird to be able to visualize everything going on in there. He now has all five senses functioning (but I can’t imagine what he’s experiencing…not much to see in there) The only senses I can use to communicate with him are the sense of sound (by talking to him or playing music) and the sense of touch by poking my belly to show him what it feels like when somebody is invading your personal space.

He definitely does not like it when I lie on my back so I try to avoid it as much as possible. I love to read in bed so I have to prop myself up a lot in order for us both to be comfortable.

I’m very excited that I haven’t had any more BH contractions and the pressure/pain I’ve been feeling is just a dull ache (that I’m sure will remain for the remainder of the pregnancy).

Monday, December 28, 2009

Holidays and Braxton Hicks

I optimistically thought I would still find time to post while traveling for the holidays but I was very very wrong. Now that I’m back home, I can reflect on the last week. The biggest thing that happened would be the start of Braxton Hicks contractions which started on Christmas morning and scared the crap outta me. I had read that BH contractions were painless and these most certainly were NOT. It didn’t help that I normally have breakfast but on Christmas morning we decided to open presents first and though I usually eat breakfast by about 8:00 or 8:30, it was about 11:00 that I felt my blood sugar dropping. Previous experience has me prepared for how emotional and kooky I get until my sugar gets back to normal. Pete got me some juice and some banana bread both of which helped but by the time my sugar was regulated, my BH contractions were still there. The combination of the low blood sugar, wonky emotions, contraction pain and being scared had me just sitting there crying not knowing what the hell was going on. Thankfully, we consulted the internet and read that the BH contractions are normal. I had no other side effects indicating early labor and I wasn’t getting more than 4 an hour. So I went to noon mass with my mom and once I got the 4th contraction at church I told her we had to leave which timing-wise worked out well because she was able to take Communion before we had to go. Back at the house, I put my feet up and relaxed a lot. Later we went to my brother’s for dinner and I stayed off my feet as much as possible. I didn’t have any more the rest of the day. What I was feeling was definitely contraction-like. It was low beneath my belly and lasted between 20 – 45 seconds each. The next day we were flying back home and the flight was supposed to leave at 2:30 but it was delayed because of weather, air traffic control, stupid people, etc. We boarded at about 4:00 but didn’t actually take off until about 5:30. What a headache. I tried to stretch my legs as much as possible and walk around but it wasn’t fun. I was uncomfortable and cramping. I had a few more BH after we landed when we were walking to get the luggage. It felt so good to be home and I stayed off my feet the reminder of the day. I’m glad we flew back on Sunday so we didn’t have to go back to work right away. We spent the day relaxing and enjoying being home. I had the great idea of taking the dog for a walk so he could enjoy all of the new snow. I wanted to walk him to the park so we could let him run around in the tennis court. It would have been a great idea if the cramping didn’t start on the way there. It wasn’t quite the same as the BH but it was painful and uncomfortable and a little scary. Luckily I had a doctor’s appointment already scheduled for Monday so I tried to stay off my feet once we got home. It seemed to get worse when I was walking or laying down. So I lay on the couch – but propped up and with my feet up. It felt weird to be couch-bound and ask Pete to get me things. He was so sweet and he made me dinner and brought me water and whatever else I needed.

I had my doctor’s appointment today and after an internal exam, she assured me that everything is ok. It is definitely BH and not pre-term labor. Cervix is closed and baby’s head is down (which doesn’t guarantee he won’t move later on). I was told to stay off my feet as much as possible until the pains get better. Since they seem to be triggered by walking too much, she says to limit my walking. (Sorry, Samson, no long walks for you from me for awhile.) Basically, it’s common sense and if I’m doing something that triggers the BH, stop doing it. But she definitely wants me to call if I get more than 4 BH in an hour. Pretty basic. While at the doctor’s I also had the glucose screening test to check my sugar and the risk of gestational diabetes. I’m feeling pretty optimistic that everything’s fine and I tried to not over-indulge in Christmas cookies which would adversely affect my blood sugar. My mom gave me cookies to take home and they came in very handy at the airport on Saturday. I’ll have the glucose results in a few days. Blood pressure was fine and weight was great! I only gained 3 pounds since the last visit which is exceptional given all of the holiday eating I had done. Yay me! They recommend gaining a pound a week from now until I deliver, so I actually had a pound to spare. I’m eating Junior Mints right now to reward myself. So overall the appointment went well. I met another doctor in the practice and I was not crazy about her. I love the other doctors and nurses so far and this was the first one I was “meh” about. She wasn’t bad, she just seemed to be rushing me along and none of the others have been like that. She answered all of my questions and explained things to me but if I had to pick who would deliver my baby out of those I’d already met, she would not be my top choice.

So, overall my Christmas was great. I enjoyed seeing my family and even got to hang out with an old college friend for dinner one night. Pete and I took my nieces and nephews to lunch and a movie and it was a very relaxing and enjoyable trip. But I am glad to be home. It will probably be the last time we go to Virginia ON Christmas because I will want Banjo to wake up at home on Christmas mornings. We’ll still make the trip in the future, but probably the week after Christmas when possible. It’s very important for Banjo to know his grandparents, aunts, uncles and cousins. My parents will be able to visit us some but it won’t be as easy for him to see the rest of the family so we’ll have to work at it. I hope as he gets older, we can take advantage of the technology and use webcams to say hello every now and then.

Banjo got some of his first Christmas presents. He got an outfit from my brother, John and his family (I have a feeling John’s not the one who picked it out…more likely it was his wife, Eileen or my nieces), also a HUGE stuffed monkey from his cousin, Jenny. Grandma and Grandpa got him a little outfit as well. My 2nd cousin also gave us a present – a blue suede baby boy scrapbook. Banjo came in handy for being the gift giver as well. Pete and I had a limit on how much we’d spend on each other for Christmas and he was able to bypass that rule by making one of the presents from Banjo, not Pete (thus staying closer to the dollar limit). I could get mad at his trickery but he bought me the Roomba (for floor and carpet) and I wanted this so so badly that I can’t complain at all. Thanks, Banjo! Hope you didn’t have to dip into your college fund to get it! The other great present is that Pete actually ventured into a scrapbook store and bought some scrapbook stuff for Banjo’s scrapbook. I’m trying to get ahead of the game and organize my scrapbook stuff as much as possible – that includes completing the books that are on my to-do list so once Banjo’s born, I can concentrate on his book alone! I'm looking forward to another long weekend since I don't have to work on Thursday or Friday so assuming the BH have stopped, I want to clean out and organize my scrapbook room.

Friday, December 18, 2009

Happy Pregnant Girl

I want to be one of those women who LOVES being pregnant. I still have three more months to go and I will be getting bigger and more uncomfortable with every passing week. I love what being pregnant will bring…our wonderful highly anticipated baby boy! But I have to admit (thank to my husband’s observation) that I am not particularly loving the actual being pregnant part as much as I thought I might. And I’m not even having a bad pregnancy (compared to other women who have been on bed rest and throwing up, etc.) I love my baby and I love feeling his little kicks and pokes and prods….and that’s about the only part I love about being pregnant. Maybe I’m a little cranky because the leg cramps were back last night – back strong enough that they woke Pete up this time. I get out of breath walking up the stairs or going short distances. And I still have 3 months to go! It’s interesting to see how my body is changing and adapting to accommodate this lil guy. But it’s also scary and hard to relate to. My body isn’t my own anymore. Nearly everything I do is for Banjo – what I eat, how much water I drink, how much (or how little) I walk, how much I sleep I get, vitamins I take, etc. I guess I just get to hold this over his head for the rest of his life. "Do you know how I had to suffer for you? Oy!"

During lunch today we wrapped presents for the family we adopted at work. I was on my feet wrapping away for about an hour. It was crowded and hot and there wasn’t anywhere to sit but I made it through. Now I should be in the Christmas spirit after all that wrapping to go home and do more! My legs were bugging me afterwards so I propped them up while working on the office Christmas cards.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

I'm beginning to resemble...

A duck.

I just noticed yesterday for the first time that my feet no longer point straight ahead, rather they are now angling out and when I'm tired, I have noticed that I waddle. I hesitated between using the term pigeon toed or duck walk but since my belly adds to my new walk, a waddle is definitely more like it. It doesn't happen all the time (yet) but I waddle up stairs and if I'm not paying attention to how I walk, the feet turn out and the belly goes out. I wonder if as I get bigger if my belly will start entering the room before the rest of me does.

I am trying to find an easy way to put on my socks. I'm not even that big yet but so far sitting on the toilet works best. I used to put socks on while standing up...lift one foot up, put on sock, switch legs, repeat. I'm not going to be able to handle that for quite a long time! It's been so cold and I want to wear tights to keep my legs warm. Putting on tights is an aerobic exercise for me. I'm all out of breath by the time I'm done.

Otherwise, I'm feeling good. My legs have been feeling much better with the extra water, milk and staying off them in general. I still get cramps at night but sleeping with the pillow under my leg helps.

The Christmas stress isn't too bad. I have some presents to wrap and a handful of presents to buy but otherwise, I'm in pretty good shape. It helps that the decorating and baking have been done and we already had our party. Now I sit back, relax and enjoy the holiday!

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

There goes Banjo's college fund

The sudden cost of a new boiler and a new liner has me gasping. Clearly I am in the wrong line of work and I could make a lot of money installing this stuff – especially to people who are stuck and don’t want to be without heat when it’s supposed to be in the single digits tonight. They installed the new boiler on Monday and were there at until about 9:00 at night before they realized it's still not venting correctly - but not because fo the new boiler - it's because the chimney liner is decomposing. Fabulous. I will just have to continue my refrain…oh well. There’s really not much we can do and I will continue to be thankful that this didn’t happen while we are supposed to be in Virginia and not know we have no heat and burst pipes.

I officially decided to take it easy last night since my legs were on fire from leg cramps the entire day. I hesitated doing it because I didn’t want to look like a weenie at work but I gave in and elevated my legs at work. I had to move my monitor and keyboard but I was still able to work and it did help. I was reading online looking for ways to help with the leg cramps. These are beyond normal leg cramps – they start in the upper thigh and shoot all the way down to my feet. When I got home from work, I told Pete I had to get off my feet because of the pain and once I actually sat down and relaxed, I started crying. Some causes of the pains are the obvious – on my feet too much, also crossing my legs while sitting. So I am trying to avoid those things and I also read that drinking more water, adding more calcium, elevating my legs and doing some stretching exercises should all help. Last night I plopped on the couch and propped up my feet and addressed Christmas cards. Pete was a sweetie and said he’d make me whatever I wanted for dinner and he made me two grilled cheese sandwiches. Yum! I also had two big glasses of milk and several glasses of water and I had a night of NO leg cramps (or if I did they were so mild that they didn’t wake me). And today I have aches in my legs – but nothing like yesterday.

Hopefully when I get home tonight there will be heat. Let’s see, Friday night – no heat. Saturday late afternoon we finally had heat. Sunday we had heat. On Monday there was no heat while they replaced the boiler and then we had heat Monday night – until it turned itself off because of bad venting…so no heat again this morning. Thank goodness we have separate heat upstairs.

I have more Christmas shopping to do but the idea of walking around the mall makes me want to cry. Fortunately, I don’t have tons to do but now that I’ve missed the shipping deadline I will have to brave some stores. Oh well. Maybe tomorrow night will be a better night for shopping.

Monday, December 14, 2009

Holiday stuff

*Warning – long rambling post* Less about Banjo and more about being a little stressed out. Feel free to skip the babble.
Banjo summary – he’s good – kicking away.

Yay for Banjo being able to roll with whatever’s going on. I had a very busy weekend. I love to plan things and I as much as I try to allow wiggle room in my plans, I somehow always seem to be a little behind. So here I am on December 14 breathing a little sigh of relief before I tackle the next items on my list. Going back to the end of November we had a great visit with my parents in town. I had somehow thought I’d accomplish more during their visit such as put up Christmas decorations and start moving things from my office – which will be the nursery. But I preferred hanging out and enjoying their company than actually doing work so I didn’t even consider doing it once they got here. And their visit went by so fast. I had planned on taking them to the Oak Park Conservatory and the Frank Lloyd Wright museum but none of that happened either. Oh well. That seems to be the refrain of my life lately – “oh well”

I was also working on a scrapbook for Grandma Babe’s 85th birthday present and that took a little longer than expected – plus I had a hard time narrowing down which pictures to use (because there were so many good ones) so it ended up being pretty big. Her party was December 6 – so I had to have the book finished by then. Luckily I had some help and it all got done.

Then I started planning our Holiday Open house party. This year it was on a Sunday during the day instead of a Saturday night like last year. That helped because I had an extra day to prepare. I also took Friday off of work so I could get things ready and not stress out. I had finished the majority of the Christmas decorating during the week after work so I still had some Christmas stuff to finish up on Friday and I spent the rest of the day catching up on about 10 loads of laundry, washing dishes, cleaning my office and general cleanup stuff. I had planned on going grocery shopping on Friday to avoid it on Saturday but I never got around to it. Dinner was later than I planned and wasn’t done until 8:00 so by the time we finished eating we were then late getting to my brother-in-law’s graduation celebration at a local bar. We stopped by for a few drinks (I had a Shirley Temple and then an orange juice – yum!) I was already behind schedule for the party on Sunday. I hadn’t baked a single cookie, wrapped a single gift or addressed a single non-existent Christmas card. We got back from the bar on Friday night to a chilly house. Pete figured out the boiler wasn’t working and after considerable worrying and research he tried to light the pilot light. The internet is the best thing ever. We used Service Magic and some other searches to find a repairman and one of them talked Pete through the process of lighting the pilot light. It would light but not stay lit. Which narrowed down the problem to a few different things (none of which I remember) and we tried to get one of the 24 hour places to come out that night but that didn’t work. I took a few naps on the couch while Pete was working on all of this and we finally went to bed at 3 am. Someone agreed to come in the morning. Luckily we have separate heat upstairs which is where our bedroom is so we moved the birdcage upstairs (so they wouldn’t freeze) and got a few hours of sleep. Back on the phone in the morning so forget my early morning grocery shopping plan. Oh well. I stayed with Pete as we anxiously waited to figure out what’s going on and I didn’t get out the door until around noon. I hate shopping to begin with so hitting the stores was an ordeal (plus I hadn’t eaten lunch so when I was feeling super homicidal, I stopped for some lunch). Finally home around 3:00 and the temporary fix is done to the boiler and I haven’t made a single cookie. We put away the groceries and I start baking. I had planned on going to a cousin’s surprise birthday party which started at 4:00 and we sadly realized that wasn’t going to happen. There was also another party that night a friend was having that we were also going to have to miss. The good news is we had heat! And I started baking. I had my original planned list of all of the desserts I was going to make. I looked at that list again and started crossing things off. No fudge, no stained glass jell-o, no trifle, no roskie cookies. Oh well. I started with oatmeal raisin cookies. Then while the oven was still hot, I threw in those Pillsbury reindeer shaped sugar cookies. Then I started the disaster of the press cookies. I was going to make 3 different kinds of press cookies. I ended up serving a total of about 3 cookies. The first batch with orange zest looked terrible before they even went in the oven. When they came out of the oven they were not cute little stars, they were flat blobs with sprinkles. Meh. Oh well. A lot broke but I didn’t care at that point. They sat on the cooling rack while I started the next batch. They were going to be little Christmas trees. I missed some step in the recipe (probably out of exhaustion) and I had a crumbly mess which did not resemble a cookie dough in any way whatsoever. So I was wasteful and threw the entire uncooked batch away. I looked at my recipe for peanut butter press cookies and I threw it away without even attempting it. I decided to do something easy and I made some brownies. As I was making room for a bowl, I took the container filled with the orange blob press cookies when my hand slipped and they went flying on the floor. I had already packed the extra 3 or 4 blob cookie sin another container so they were all I had left. I lost it. I screamed, I cursed, I cried and as I went to get the broom, luckily Pete took the broom from me and cleaned up my mess. Time for a break. There was one more batch of cookies I wanted to make – peanut butter kisses. I was being stubborn and not giving up for the night until these were made. Luckily there were no issues there. So slightly behind schedule and exhausted. Oh well.

Sunday morning I woke up at 7:00 and thought I had so much time! The party doesn’t start until 11:00 so I took my time and had that cup of coffee and got the crock pots going and started prepping some food and putting it back in the fridge. Somehow, I got showered and dressed but still wasn’t ready when people started showing up at 10:45. Oh well. It was a joint effort and when people offered to help, I thankfully gave them things to do. I think I was all caught up by about 11:30.

The party was great. I really enjoyed seeing everyone who could make it and I didn’t feel that I talked to everyone enough or got to relax enough or take any pictures. But somehow I had a great time! Later in the day I would sit down whenever I felt like it because my feet and back were killing me. I have been having terrible leg cramps the last few nights (which my doctor warned would be bad if I was on my feet too much and to try to keep them elevated.) I actually woke up crying in pain one night and they lasted for about a half hour and Pete slept right through it all of course. Once I was off my feet I was feeling better. I’ve tried propping my fete in bed and also using a pillow between my legs.

So where does this long rant of a blog post leave me? Still slightly tired, relieved the majority of things on my to-do list are done but frustrated that I still have a new list because I still have Christmas cards, Christmas shopping to do and packing for our trip to see my family on Sunday.

Through it all, Banjo’s been a little trooper – kicking away so I know he’s there but has given me a break with the acid reflux and heartburn. He’s been letting me sleep more and if he could make these leg cramps go away, I’d be super happy.

I don’t know how I will manage to get everything done after Banjo’s arrived.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

belly pics

Here is my 23 week belly picture. My backside seems to be growing proportionally to the front.

And it's official. Here's the proof I can no longer wear my perfect winter coat. I am so sad. It had everything I could want in a winter coat - long, wool (and super warm) a hood, long sleeves. But I guess the whole being able to button it without feeling I'm going to pop out of it could be important too. Goodbye favorite coat - I'll see you in Winter 2010.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Doctor's appointment

So I had my doctor's appointment today and met another doctor in the practice. So far I love every doctor and nurse I have met at this practice. What a big difference from the doctors I dealt with last time. At these early appointments there isn't too much to discuss each month and the appointments are pretty quick. They consist of weight, blood pressure, listening to the baby's heartbeat, measuring my belly and answering any questions. My bp was normal, baby heartbeat normal at 140, fundal right on target 23 centimeters at 23 weeks. Unfortunately I've gained a little more weight than I'd like. 18 pounds since becoming pregnant! And since the belly size is on target, it confirms my suspicions that all of my excess weight has moved to my thighs and my butt.
The doctor said not to diet but to keep an eye on sweets and maybe address my carb cravings, which are very common for pregnant women (and I've always had even before being pregnant). She said if I replace a carb serving with a vegetable, I should be fine. She said not to be concerned but that the majority of baby weight usually comes in the third trimester when the baby is growing the most. And I'm not quite at the third trimester and I have more weight to gain!
We also discussed the sleep thing (or lack of sleep) and leg cramps. Unfortunately it doesn't sound like much can be done about either. I talked to her about my doppler monitor and she warned me not to use the doppler to replace concerns if the baby isn't moving. Now that Banjo is moving around, I should feel him kick every day and if I don't feel him kicking, hearing his heartbeat is not a replacement for calling the doctor. She explained some women missed issues that should have been addressed by relying on the doppler.
So, overall, a very good appointment. My next appointment at the end of the month will have the glucose screening test. Hopefully I will have decreased my sweet tooth so that my sugar isn't an issue.

best comparison to baby size

Ok, I love the comparisons for how big the baby is every week. It's usually some sort of fruit or vegetable. My favorite was what I read today for this week.

"Your baby is about the size and weight of a Harry Potter book"


Monday, December 7, 2009

Another ultrasound appointment

So I went back to the doctor’s today for the ultrasound appointment that I missed on Thursday. Banjo was not cooperating and positioned well enough for them to get all of the necessary images. So, no cute ultrasound pictures to add to the scrapbook from today’s visit. Instead they took about 50 pictures of his heart. I was getting worried that they had me come back and take so many pictures but the ultrasound tech assured me that everything looked good and normal but they needed so many pictures because of his weird position. It was cool because I got to see close up images of his little 4 chambers of the heart and as I watched it pulsing away it was just amazing! There was still one angle they needed that they couldn’t get even after me laying on my side and moving around. Banjo was taking a nice little nap. Usually he moves around so much during his ultrasound appointments that they have a hard time getting him to stop moving but this was the opposite. But I came prepared and I brought some candy since he usually seems to move around after I eat some chocolate (seems he will have a sweet tooth just like his Grandpa Rakshys). Sure enough, I ate my little mini kit kat bar and he woke up and got into the position he needed to be in. I go back tomorrow to meet with the doctor to discuss the ultrasound and other general stuff.

I had a pretty good weekend, although it wasn’t as productive as I would have liked it to be. The Christmas tree is up and decorated (except for the ribbons which I’ll hang tonight). Now I just need to finish going through the boxes I have to decide which decorations (candles and music boxes and stuff like that) that I will be using. Pete complains I have too much stuff but I have pared back and I got rid of stuff last year and the year before. The problem is when I add to the decorations (presents and hand me downs from my family) that I don’t seem to be making any headway. Oh well. I told him he should see what decorations G has and then maybe he’ll appreciate my restraint. Besides, I LOVE Christmas! We put up Banjo’s first Christmas ornament. It’s a Where the Wild Things Are ornament. Pete bought the book for Banjo as a first present and since we can’t get those Baby’s first Christmas ornaments, we’ll always know that this is his first ornament.

I am late on my Christmas cards though which isn’t like me. Hopefully I will be able to work on them and make sure they’re out in the mail by Monday.

My list of normal things to do is blending with baby list of things to do which is merging with Christmas things to do. I am not getting overwhelmed. And I am trying to be realistic about what has to get done, vs what I’d like to get done.

Sleep has been pretty good lately. One night of getting up a lot last night doesn’t negate the several nights in a row of long uninterrupted sleeps I’ve had. I hope the good sleep trend continues.

Saturday, December 5, 2009

23 weeks

Banjo is the size of a papaya. I can't think of the last time I bought a papaya so it's not a great frame of reference for me. Since he's almost 12" now, I like to think that he's the size of a Subway sandwich instead. He weighs almost one whole pound!

I had my prenatal yoga class today and chatted with the teacher about her being our doula. She seemed excited but she felt the need to remind me that she is not a certified doula and that this would be her first birth she would be participating in. I don't mind because it's not like I'm asking her to my midwife or my doctor. I will be delivering in a hospital and there will be medical assistance all around. I want her as a doula because she has shown us the positions and breathing exercises during class that will help with pain management during labor. It also will take some of the stress off of Pete. She suggested I look into the Bradley method as well even though we don't plan on having a natural childbirth experience (drugs are good). We stayed and chatted for about a half hour and she was so excited. We decided to have a sit down meeting and go over the birth plan in more detail when I'm closer to my due date - maybe late February, early March. Next week is the last prenatal yoga class until the next session starts January 9.

Banjo has been kicking away and I LOVE it.

I also love that I've been able to sleep. I only woke up once last night and I woke up at 5:00 to let Samson out and then got a few more hours of sleep. It feels great to catch up on sleep. I think the crazy insomnia thing has left for now. I'm sure it will be back - which just makes me treasure every moment of sleep I get now!

Friday, December 4, 2009

popping out of my coat

I am just going to chalk the sleep thing up to hormones and hope that I continue to sleep better but I’m not holding my breath. Banjo’s been kicking up a storm and I’ve noticed certain times that he’s more active – definitely after I eat anything with sugar and also around 3:00 or so. I think he takes a nap after I get him all full of yummy lunch food and that around 3:00 he’s waking up from his nap.

I keep meaning to take belly pictures and I definitely will tonight or tomorrow. Last night I took a picture (will post later) of me in my favorite winter coat which just does not fit me any longer. The buttons were popping and it was so uncomfortable. I wore my down coat today (thanks to my mother-in-law) and I will be breaking out the swing coat very soon (thanks, Mom).

One interesting change I’ve noticed is that I no longer have an outtie belly button. It is officially an innie (and I didn’t even need surgery). I thought all pregnant women got the popping belly button which obviously indicates when the baby is done. Will I develop an outtie again later? Will I never know if the baby’s done? Should I get a turkey thermometer?

My baby has been cooking for 23 weeks now and I like being on the other side of the halfway mark. The kicks are fabulous and now that I can sleep I am one happy girl!

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Yay for sleep!!

I am shouting it out for everyone to hear…I got 5 hours of sleep last night!!!! I feel so refreshed and amazing. Wow, how sad is that? I don’t care. I am so excited.

I tried to figure out what changed and why I was able to sleep. I can’t think of anything I did differently than any other night. I wish I knew only so I could make sure to do it again tonight but I won’t waste any more time thinking about it. I will just plan on sleeping like a baby again tonight. (sleeping like a baby is more like the last two weeks, right? Getting up every 2 hours...)

Banjo is kicking a lot right now. I’ve noticed that it’s usually after I eat something. For lunch I had a grilled cheese with bacon and huge bowl of fresh fruit (apples, orange slices, grapes and strawberries…yum) I think it’s probably the sugar in the fruit that woke him up. Yesterday I had several pieces of chocolate candy and he gave such a hard kick that I actually saw it! Pretty crazy. I tried to reenact the huge kick event for Pete last night and I ate some fudge and some peppermint patty candies but all I got were normal kicks, nothing big. Oh well, I’m sure there will be plenty o’ time for BIG kicks later.

I was going to try to work on the baby’s room when my parents were in but I decided my time was better spent relaxing with them instead. And I am not going to worry about rushing anything. We got our furniture WAY early and I literally have months to get the room in order. I will worry about getting through the holidays before I even think about the nursery.

Back when I thought Banjo was a girl I was so excited to pick out little girl clothes. Dresses and little tiny shoes with bows on them. I didn’t think boy clothes were as cute. I love being proven wrong – there are so many cute little boy clothes out there! I’ve done some baby shopping recently but I guess I just thought the cute things I found were a fluke and I am relieved to see so many cute little boy outfits. In order to carry on the tradition, I have to find a little sailor suit for Banjo to wear some day. Then I can put it in a picture frame with a picture of his Daddy in a sailor suit too. I will avoid naked baby pictures…except a baby’s little naked butt is so cute. My brother has a collage frame of him with his little naked butt and he recreated the same picture with his sons when they were babies. It’s so cute and it cracks me up when I see it.

I can’t believe there is a baby inside me that is almost a foot long! I’ve got a sub sandwich inside me. I love feeling his little kicks and although it seemed real before, now that we know the gender, it seems even more real and we can imagine what he may look like and what his personality will be like. I can’t wait to meet my son!

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Sleep escapes me

I am so tired and exhausted I am near tears today from sheer frustration. I don’t even know exactly how long it’s been going on but I’m guessing about 2 weeks now. I haven’t gotten a solid night’s sleep. It doesn’t matter what time I go to bed, I wake up and can’t fall back asleep. I sleep in stops and starts and in no way feel refreshed. I am tired of looking at the clock and I have tried getting out of bed and eating a snack and reading and music and taking Benadryl and I can’t sleep more than 2 hours at a time. The typical schedule goes something like this: go to bed between 10:00 – 10:30, wake up between 1:00 and 1:30. Stare at the clock and get a few minutes of sleep here and there. Time permitting, I get a solid two hours of sleep right before I wake up. Even during the Thanksgiving break when I could sleep in, I was still up at 7:00 or 8:00 a.m. even though I’m still not getting enough sleep. I see my doctor on Monday so I will ask him about it but in the meantime I am miserable. Some days are worse than others and I actually feel like I’m getting used to it – like I’m prepping for when Banjo arrives and sleep will be a thing as unattainable as ever having thin hips and a waist again. From what I’ve read, this weird sleep thing isn’t supposed to happen until the 3rd trimester when the kicks and being uncomfortable keeps me awake. Do I seriously have 17 more weeks of non-sleep before the baby even arrives?!!? It’s not stress related because the last week I’ve had no stress at all. Oh well.

I haven’t posted in awhile because I’ve been exhausted and just not around a computer. So much for my blog a day (ha) or 30 posts in 30 days. Oh well. November’s over and I’d like to say I’ll be posting more regularly in December but with the holidays approaching and since we’ll be traveling December 20 – 26, I’m not sure how much blogging I’ll be doing. I need a new belly picture. For some reason in the last 3 days I feel like I’ve gotten HUGE. Maybe I’m just bloated. I also had acid reflux again from drinking a soda. So no more soda or Chinese food for me. But drinking a glass of milk does seem to help.

No other big symptoms. Banjo’s been kicking a lot lately at all different times. I’m afraid my wonky sleep schedule is affecting him as well because I feel him during the day and at night (not that he’s keeping me awake, I just notice it when I’m laying there contemplating sleep). I feel like I lost that shiny healthy hair thing and the brief interlude of a clear complexion I had a few weeks ago. I’m sure the lack of sleep has something to do with it.

My parents were in for a visit last week and we had a nice relaxing visit. Grandma bought Banjo lots of cute outfits (I got a few myself) when we went out shopping on Black Friday. Grandpa got him a huge super soft and squishy stuffed giraffe. We went to Babies R Us to register and got a lot done. There are still a few things I need to research but since the shower isn’t until February 28 I figure we have time.

My to do list is slowly getting unmanageable but I just realized that yesterday. I hope to put a big dent in it this weekend. At least one item on my list can get checked off, since I’ve been meaning to write a blog entry for several days now. Wish me luck for a good night’s sleep.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

A baby BOY

Two ultrasounds later and we have photographic proof that there will be a little baby boy in the DiVerde household!!! And of course, there was only one heartbeat in there (so the other one we heard must have been my own)
We are very excited!!!

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Wait is almost over

My waiting to find out if Banjo’s a boy or a girl is almost over. I can’t wait to find out. Obviously I will be happy with a boy or a girl – it will just be nice to actually know for sure.

My parents are coming in for a visit and they’re arriving today. I have the ultrasound appointment tomorrow morning with the doctor. Pete’s going to that with me. The room is too small and cramped to fit me, Pete, my mom, my dad and the doctor. Before I knew when my doctor’s appointment was even scheduled I had made an appointment for a 3-D ultrasound at a place in Oak Park. It’s only $39 and that’s one my parents can go to. So I am having two ultrasounds tomorrow. I know it seems a little silly and excessive but I know I want the normal ultrasound that the doctor looks at to ensure everything is developing on target. And the 3-D ultrasound just sounds like it would be so cool. Plus my parents get to be involved which is tough because they live so far away.

They’re staying until Monday and while they’re here we’ll register for stuff at Babies R Us and maybe work on clearing out what is still my office but will soon be the nursery. I’m looking forward to a nice relaxing week with them. The only downside is that normally when my mom and I visit each other, we stay up late drinking wine and that will definitely be an activity I can’t partake in this year. Maybe Pete will be up for the task.

Nothing new…just getting tired of waking up every night at around 1:00 a.m. and not being able to fall back asleep. Pete says it’s because I’m getting too much sleep. I argue that 4 hours of sleep is not too much sleep. With almost a week off of work, I will try sleeping in to catch up on my sleep. I will save up as much sleep as I can now so that when Banjo’s born I can cash it in.

This will be Banjo’s first Thanksgiving. Thinking about food I have to get this bib for Banjo.

Monday, November 23, 2009


FINALLY I felt the baby kick (and not just flutters) . I'm not sure what I was expected but the little taps I was getting throughout the day weren't just gas. I realized they were kicks when we pulled out the doppler monitor and were listening around for the heartbeat (heard the one strong one at 150-ish and another lighter one which I'm guessing is an echo of my own slower heartrate). After we put the doppler away I was sitting there with my hands on my belly and maybe the prodding from the doppler instigated it but I felt something and I told Pete and it kept happening. We were wondering if Pete would be able to feel it too. He put his hand on my belly but not only could he not feel anything but the kicks stopped all together. I ate a peppermint patty candy and the sugar must have stirred something up because there were more kicks and a few were strong enough for Pete to actually feel it! It's not strong enough to see but it a great feeling. And now I can stop whining about not feeling any kicks!

Samson is acting more like his normal self so these must be some potent meds. He wanted to be part of the belly picture.

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Good Samson news

So we got back from the vet and the good news is that Samson has an infection. So he's going on antibiotics which should take care of the urinating and excess drinking of water. It is so much easier to treat a medical issue than a behavioral issue. I feel terrible that he's sick but beyond relieved that there is a solution in sight. Yay!!!

I had my prenatal yoga class this morning. I missed it last week because of the furniture delivery and I really love going to that class. The stretches feel great and one of my favorite times is when we sit with our hands on our bellies and just kind of connect with baby. It's so peaceful and special (and corny, I know).

I had my normal insomnia last night but I got so much sleep last night and slept in today. I am trying to relish and enjoy every moment of sleep I get now so I later I can look back and go "Remember what it felt like to sleep? Sleep was great"

I took an odd old wives tale test to predict the baby's gender and it had the normal questions like what's the baby's heartbeat and are you carrying high or low and do you prefer salty or sweet but it also had weird questions like does your pillow face north or south, do you like to eat the heel of bread, does your mother have gray hair? Seriously? Anyway, that test said it's about 67% sure I'm having a girl. Then there's my friend, Carol, who thinks I'm having a boy based on the most recent baby births in our office. Two boys, then two girls and since the most recent birth was a boy then I will have a boy to keep the pattern going. My mom thinks it's a girl - because she just knows. :) We'll see soon enough!!

Friday, November 20, 2009

21 weeks

So Banjo is now the size of a banana. Average size is at this time is 10 ½” long and 12.7 ounces. Still no kicking and last night after using the Doppler again there was only one solid heartbeat, no other mystery echo heartbeats floating around, so that’s good.

I’ve recently observed a disturbing thing. My backside is getting as big as my front side. I’m curious how much weight I will have gained at my next doctor’s visit on Wednesday – hopefully it’s not too much. I think all of the cookies and chocolate have decided to hang out on my thighs and butt and all of the nutritious foods are going to my belly. I’ve also decided there are way too many mirrors in my bathroom around the shower area.

I had a not so pleasant surprise this morning during my 1:00 am bout of insomnia. Turns out Samson peed in the dining room again. This has been a very disturbing trend and I’ve gone from feeling mad to hopeless. It all started on November 2. Prior to that, he was house trained and the only time he messed in the house at all was in the basement on the carpet. Our solution to the basement issue was to use a baby gate that blocked his access unless we were with him. I’d heard that carpet feels good to a dog and reminds them of the softness of the grass outside so it is common to have accidents on the carpet. After putting up the gate, he hadn’t messed in the house in months. Then beginning November 1, he started urinating or pooping in the same spot in the dining room. It was on hardwood floor, so not a huge deal to clean up but still very annoying and not a habit we want him to have. Unfortunately there were several changes that had occurred at the same time that may have affected him behaviorally which instigated this unfortunate trend. I have an appointment with the vet tomorrow to rule out any medical issues for this behavior. The things that changed are:
1. We went away for the weekend and boarded him at doggy daycare. He’s not in a cage all day when he’s there. There’s a certain amount of time that he runs free in their fenced in play area with other dogs. They also have nap time in the middle of the day and time when they’re sleeping. He’s been there before and not had any issues. We were gone from October 30 – November 1.
2. Our dog walker was out of commission for 2 weeks and his first day back was November 2.
3. We changed his food from regular size to large size dog. This may have had something to do with his pooping in the house as he adjusted to the new food (unfortunately we did not mix his food with the older food to the new food gradually). One change we made is to take him outside to poop 20 – 30 minutes after he’s eaten. When we do this, it seems to have eliminated his pooping inside the house.
4. He went from sleeping with me to sleeping alone. About 2 months ago when my insomnia got really bad I started sleeping in the spare bedroom because our box springs were killing my back and Pete’s snoring was keeping me up and I was tossing so much I was keeping him awake. I allowed Samson to sleep in the spare bedroom with me instead of in his crate. He was doing this for about 2 weeks and there were no issues with messing in the house. We got a new bed frame and I started sleeping in my own bed again but not putting Samson in his crate on November 1. Since then, my insomnia has come back and I’ve stayed in the spare bedroom some more and allowed Samson there with me. 90% of the time he did not mess in the house at all.
So I don’t know what it’s related to. He used to have such a normal routine that I was spoiled with his habits. On weekdays I wake up between 5:30 - 6:00 and give him a walk. He would pee and poop outside. When we got back, I would feed him at about 6:30. Pete would take him out to pee at about 8:00 before going in his crate. The dog walker would come over at about 3:30 or 4:00 and walk him between 30 – 60 minutes. He would always pee and poop during this walk. I would get home from work around 6:00 and take him out to pee. I’d take him out again before bed and he’d pee and be fine until morning.
He has been drinking more water than normal which I will bring up to the vet but he is so off schedule now I don’t know what to do. I’ve gone back to my housebreaking tips such as giving him a treat every single time he pees and poops outside and praising him. I will also try to take him out every 3 hours when we’re home and continue with the scheduled poop trips no more than 30 minutes after he eats. He is always going in the same spot in the house and there’s no easy way to block it off especially now that we have our new furniture. So we’ll see what the vet says and I’ll try to not hate my dog even though I’m going through paper towels like crazy. I’ve tried using Nature’s Miracle on the spots as well and it doesn’t matter.

I’ve read some articles online about dogs and cats being able to sense when their owner is pregnant and they have been known to exhibit strange behavior such as being over-protective or urinating in the house. Has anyone experienced or heard of this before?

I really want this resolved as soon as possible (obviously) so any advice or tips are greatly appreciated.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Link to a giveaway

Thanks to Sarah, I now have Red Hot Chili Peppers in my head.
Check out her blog, leave a comment and you may win something. What will you win? Something fabulous but you have to go check it out to see what it is.
Go on.
Dance Peanut

Tater tots

Tater tots solve everything. Seriously. I thought I lost my ipod today. I couldn't find it anywhere on my desk or in my bag so I was alternating between someone stealing it or I left it on the train or maybe it was on the kitchen countertop at home. I had tater tots for lunch and I found my ipod. (It was in my bag buried beneath something)
I am not moody at all today - thank you tots. Maybe there is a correlation between hormone levels and tater tots. Kind of like chocolate and pms. I bet someone would be willing to do a study on that. Sign me up.

I spent some time doing a google search on can an ultrasound miss finding a twin and found too many results when women didn't find out they had twins until the week 20 ultrasound even though they had previous ultrasounds. None of them specified if they were the ultrasound on the belly or if they had internal ultrasounds. Basically I have less than a week to find out. I don't really think I'm carrying twins (I'm not nearly big enough) but it would be freakin hilarious wouldn't it? Pete, are you laughing with me? If you're freaking out, just have a tater tot and everything will look much better.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Ok, the hormones seem a little more normal now. Wanted to kill people earlier today (multiple people for different reasons but all very justified). Maybe now that I'm nice and full from lunch I am less stabby.

I am concerned that I'm still not feeling any kicks. I'm almost 21 weeks and nothing. Last night I had cramping so I pulled out the doppler monitor and had Pete find the heartbeat (he can find that thing so fast - he's a master). So we're listening to it and then moving the doppler around and then there's a different sound. And the doppler screen is actually working. It's gauging at 155 (which is what it always is in the doctor's office) instead of the too hard to pinpoint on the screen rate that jumps from 95 to 185. This "new" heartbeat was much faster and stronger than what we were listening to before. So Pete was appropriately freaked out and thought "oh no! TWINS" then we convinced ourselves that the slower sound we heard may have been an echo of something else (maybe my spleen or liver ha ha). We also tossed around the idea that the stronger heart rate was because Banjo was awake and moving around instead of sleeping. What's odd is that in the span of about 5 minutes, we heard the fast heartbeat and the slower heartbeat. I don't see any possible way after my last ultrasound that there was another baby hiding in there (I had an internal and external ultrasound). I also don't feel I'm big enough for twins. Well, we'll know in a week I guess. In the meantime, hey baby (or babies) please give me a kick or two so I know you're in there and ok.

On unrelated news, there was a health crisis in our office this morning because a coworker came into work with an active case of shingles. I already had chicken pox so I'm not at risk of getting chicken pox again. And from what I've read you don't get shingles from someone who has shingles but someone has shingles can give you chicken pox. The bad part about this is that his shingles are open lesions on his face that haven't scabbed over yet. So people in the office were understandably upset, particularly a few employees who never had chicken pox. I'm not freaking out about it too much(because enough coworkers already freaked out for me)and since I sit near him I moved my laptop to another cubicle farther away - just in case. He has since gone home and won't be in for the rest of the week. Am I under-reacting to this? Should I be more worried? Everything I read said that chicken pox is spread through the air but that shingles is only passed by contact. Well, I didn't go anywhere near him and I've been washing my hands more than normal and using hand sanitizer. Also had Lysol sprayed around my cube, his cube and the surrounding area. I think I'm safe. Does anyone have any knowledge of if and how dangerous my limited exposure is?

On to happier news, my skin has finally cleared up (knock on wood) and my hair is getting thicker again. These hormone things are wacked!


It's been a few days since I posted (so much for trying to get back on the "a post a day" track). No real reason for not posting but I have been so hormonal lately. The good thing is I'm aware of it (good for Pete, ha ha). I thought the 2nd trimester was going to be all sunshine and roses but I guess that was a short lived 2 weeks. Now it's tears and insomnia. Both for absolutely NO reason. Well, maybe it's a vicious cycle. I'm hormonal because I'm tired and I'm tired because I'm hormonal.
We got our dining room set (with way less drama than the nursery furniture delivery) but still not incident-free. The delivery calls beforehand and showed up when they were supposed to but the glass shelves were broken (glad they checked) and they said they'd deliver new shelves on Thursday. Yesterday I came home and the neighbor brought in the shelves for me - wrapped in a moving blanket, unbroken but there were only three shelves (not four) and no hardware. So I have to call and wait for them to come back again. After a year and a half with no dining room furniture at all I am anxious to finally be able to take my china out of the box it's sitting in.
So my goal today is to have minimal tears and get a good night's sleep tonight. Last night the insomnia only kept me awake for about an hour at 1 am so that's not too bad.

Friday, November 13, 2009


Today I am officially 20 weeks pregnant! Woo hoo!!! Halfway there!! Now that I’ve reached this milestone I’ve been waiting for there are a few more I’m anticipating as well. In a week and a half I will have 2 ultrasounds to find out if Banjo’s a boy or a girl. Then I’m also looking forward to those hard little kicks. I felt those flutters for awhile and then I stopped feeling them (but I’m not freaking out about it) and I can’t wait to feel those lil feet or fists poking my belly. I’m sure in a few months I may not be so overjoyed at those prods and pokes but as of now I’m really looking forward to them.

So far, my other big deal milestones have been the following:
Positive pregnancy test
First doctor’s appointment
First ultrasound
Prenatal yoga classes
Going to Baby Expos
Browsing through baby stores and looking for things for my baby for the first time (I’ve obviously been in baby stores before buying things for family and friends)
End of first trimester
End of wearing any of my old pants and only wearing pants with elastic, drawstrings or a big black band of material to stretch over my belly
Buying new bras
Picking out baby furniture
Receiving baby furniture

It seems like there are so many Firsts in the beginning of the pregnancy and then it sounds like in turns into a lot of waiting and getting fatter. Even in the pregnancy books describing what happens each week, there are huge changes each week in the beginning where it describes the baby’s development and what organs are growing and what significant changes are happening like taste buds and able to hear and so on. But it sounds like from now on, everything just keeps growing. I guess my next baby milestone will be 25 weeks which is the earliest possible time the baby could have a chance of living if born early. Then the 37 week mark for being born premature.

But I also have the baby shower to look forward to and decorating the nursery and other fun stuff. Plus things like forgetting what my feet look like (which means I’ll just have to get pedicures), a sore back (which means I’ll need to get massages), getting more out of breath from walking up the stairs (which means Pete will have to carry the laundry from the basement). Hmmm, not so bad. I’m not one to pull the pregnancy card to get out of things. I’m curious how long that will last!

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

World's Finest Chocolates

Some motivated kid was in the office selling that fundraising chocolate - world's finest chocolate. The one that comes in almond, caramel, crisp or plain chocolate. He dared to not walk to my desk and ask me if I wanted any. I made a "casual" trip down the hallway stalking the poor kid so I could buy some chocolate. I bought one of each except for the almond, bleh. If he's smart, he'll be back tomorrow.

Totally unrelated is the question on how healthy is my immune system since I just spent 4 hours locked in a conference room with about 4 sick people coughing, sneezing, hacking and sharing their ickies. Purell hand sanitizer is my best friend today. Sitting on the train twice a day must be building up my immunity. It doesn't help that the contractor who came over last night was telling us about his friend whose wife is pregnant and she just died from the flu. Yup, less than 5 minutes after Pete and I tell this guy I'm pregnant that he shares that lovely story of how the mom-to-be and baby both died. This is when filters come in handy. For the record, I do not want to hear ANYBODY's horror stories about bad deliveries that either happened to themself or a friend or a cousin of a friend. If I want to be terrified, there are enough shows on TV that tell complicated delivery stories. I can also find them online if I like. I've requested that Pete read the chapters in my pregnancy books on "Concerns and Complications." We will address whatever happens as it happens but I don't need to hear horror stories and start freaking out about things now. It's bad enough I'm afraid my uterus will fall out!

On that note, time for some candy.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Sleep and chocolate

5 hours of sleep isn’t enough for me. I’m going to bed early tonight. Snoring, leg cramps, allergies and anxiety kept me up last night. Luckily, no heartburn lately so I will blame the Chinese food on Saturday night. But when it happens again (as I’m sure it will) I will be prepared. Part of what was keeping me awake last night was obsessing over things on my list. It’s funny how in the light of day, it’s never as bad as it is at 3 am. Just think how much I’ll sleep when I have an actual baby to take care of and worry about rather than obsess over stupid things on a list (like get leather dog leash fixed, scan pictures, organize jewelry, etc). I usually have a half cup of coffee at home before I go to work and another little bit of coffee (mixed with decaf) once I get to work. I decided against the work coffee today due to my jittery nerves. I had some chamomile tea which helped.

My sweet tooth is starting to get the best of me. I don’t think I’m gaining much but every day I eat chocolate cookies and a bowl of ice cream with chocolate syrup. That’s my after work and after dinner snack. It could be worse. Then the chocolate cookie bug bit me today at work and I bought a container of Chips Ahoy. I didn’t finish them though, so that’s good! I’m still eating healthy things like my standard breakfast of yogurt and oatmeal. My morning snacks were an apple and some string cheese. But if I had my way I could eat a whole tray of chocolate chip cookies. Oh! But I have very exciting news!! My fudge craving will be met this Saturday when my friend, Marcos, brings over some of his homemade Brazilian fudge. So I won’t have to wait until A) Pete uses the recipe my dad sent for his chocolate marshmallow fudge or B) my dad makes it for me in person when my parents come in for Thanksgiving. Yay for Marcos!

Monday, November 9, 2009

Belly at 19 weeks

Look, I do still have a waist!

Banjo is the size of a mango now.


I feel much better today than yesterday. No tears and no heartburn or acid reflux. I’ve had to rewrite my to do list because I didn’t get nearly as much done over the weekend as I would have liked. But it also forced me to reprioritize and I realized there are some things I don’t need to stress out about. So we decided we are not even going to think about painting the dining room until after Christmas. The weekends are already getting filled up and we need to uninterrupted days to paint and there just don’t seem to be any. The current colors aren’t terrible – they’re just not what we want to keep forever. I will have to empty out the current sideboard that’s in there anyway so it doesn’t matter whether I do it now or later. And one less thing to worry about right now is always good.

One thing worrying me is I think Samson may have a urinary tract infection. He’s been drinking more than normal and he’s been peeing in the house. It’s not like a little bit – it’s a huge pile that takes about a half roll of paper towels to clean up. So he has a vet appointment this Wednesday. I hope it’s something that can be treated with pills and that it isn’t diabetes. When I saw the mess he left Sunday morning – one hour after I walked him and he went outside, I almost lost it. I was so mad. I went upstairs and hooked up my Doppler monitor and the woosh woosh of my little Banjo calmed me down.

Today – for the first time in awhile I’m thinking maybe Banjo is a boy again. No reason…just having boy vibes today. Maybe it’s because Ann went on the guess the gender baby poll and voted for Boy about 3 or 4 times. She was surprised that it let you vote more than once. I thought maybe the honesty policy would apply but then realized I’m talking about Ann and it could have been one of her other personalities voting those other times. What will I have to wonder and worry about once I finally know the baby’s gender??!! Oh, I’m sure I’ll think of something.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

2nd trimester stopped being fun today

I hope this is just a hiccup and not what the rest of this trimester is going to be like. I woke up feeling sick and nauseous fighting the urge to throw up. I've never experienced acid reflux before but based on my symptoms I can't imagine it was anything else. I was pretty worthless most of the day feeling crappy. On top of it my hormones decided to go haywire and I kept crying for no reason at all. The good thing is that I was aware that it was hormones and could give Pete a heads up. So I stood there crying while making chili for dinner (in hindsight, probably no the best thing to make considering how I was feeling). I did learn that milk helps the acid reflux though. I also learned that normally a hug from my husband makes me feel better when I'm upset but when I'm crying for no reason at all nothing seems to help.
I'm going to consider today a learning experience and stay positive that I can grasp some more of that 2nd trimester mojo that had me feeling so good in the last several weeks.
In less than a week I'll be at the 20 week mark and halfway through this pregnancy. And in about 2 weeks, I'll hopefully be able to find out the baby's gender.
I have pictures to post but I'm going to post them tomorrow. Hopefully sleep will help.

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Furniture has arrived!

The furniture arrived and I am so relived to not have to deal with that delivery company again! It looks great. It's all cramped in the room since I still have ,most of my office furniture still in there. We'll have to rearrange stuff soon. We're waiting to paint since we don't know the baby's gender yet. Hopefully we'll be able to find out the day before Thanksgiving. I'm still leaning towards girl but I don't care - I'm looking forward to meeting this lil one soon enough.

Going for Chinese tonight. I'm feeling a little off tonight so that will be fun. I'm feeling a little off today...a little dizzy and little light headed so I've been taking it easy. Plenty to do and I'll tackle my to do list tomorrow!

Friday, November 6, 2009


I did get a call from the delivery company without having to harass them. They will be there tomorrow between 10 and 2. I will be relieved when this is done.

I'm officially 19 weeks pregnant now. I'm almost at the 20 week, halfway mark. Wow. I know I have a long way to go but it seems like it's already gone by so fast. I'm not in panic mode at all but I have been making many lists. I know they're sometimes excessive (stop laughing, Pete) but my lists keep me sane. Even if I have 3 different lists with some of the same things on them and not one list ever seems to get finished before I'm already starting a new one. Of course I have lists of things I want to get done before the baby's born. The majority of items are baby related but there are also non-baby related items (like painting the dining room and turning the empty room upstairs into the master closet, etc.)I don't know how many of these things will actually get done. The baby related things are pretty important, things like install the car seat and register at Babies R Us. I also have many months to get these items completed which is much more manageable than my weekend lists of about 30 tasks.

No furniture update

The charming man I spoke to on Wednesday assured me they would be calling me on Thursday to confirm a time when they will be delivering the furniture on Saturday. I am so suprised that I haven't heard back from anyone. No, really, I'm shocked. I guess I'll wait until about lunchtime and try calling them again. After all, I have about 12 different phone numbers from my calling frenzy on Wednesday.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Dopplers and delivery woes

I’m going to try to get back to blogging every day. Especially since it’s blog every day month NaBloPoMo. I don’t have the patience or time to participate in NaNoWriMo but I think I can handle a post a day. I have a few to catch up on so I can have 30 posts this month.

I’m feeling good. My big news is that I ordered the Doppler monitor and it arrived yesterday!! I was excited and nervous but Pete found Banjo’s heartbeat right away. I think I may have gone a little overboard applying the gel (and oo, it was cold. It’s much nicer in the doctor’s office when they have it sitting in a little gel warmer) but I’ll use less next time. The monitor wasn’t displaying the actual heartbeat rate correctly. It seemed to jump around the 70’s and 80’s which I know is too low and it wasn’t actually beating that slow. A few times, I registered at about 155 and then 160 (which is line with what it’s been in the doctor’s office) but Banjo was moving around a lot so we had to keep moving the monitor to catch. What a cool whoosh whoosh sound to hear. It’s just so peaceful and comforting to hear it. I’m glad I heard it first in the doctor’s office because I’m not sure I would know what I was listening for.

The other big news is that the nursery furniture should be delivered this Saturday. After a great deal of frustration with the local delivery company trying to schedule this, hopefully this will be resolved when they show up on Saturday. I originally received a call from JC Penney’s last week letting me know I would be getting a call from the local delivery company to schedule the delivery. I tried to stall a bit because we’re not quite ready to receive the furniture yet but they wanted to get this thing delivered. Ok, I understand that. They gave me the number of who would be contacting me – 630-510-8187. I received a call from them and they wanted to deliver it this Wednesday between 3:00 and 5:00 pm. I explained that Pete and I both work and told them I’d have to look into other arrangements and that I’d get back to them. They said they did NOT have deliveries on Saturdays and the latest they could schedule something on a weekday was in the 3:00 – 7:00 window. They called me again the next day and I tried to call them back but there was an issue with their phone. Marci doesn’t have to work this Friday so she offered to be there for the delivery on Friday between noon and 3. Ok, great…problem solved. Yeah, problem solved except for the fact that every time I tried to call them this past Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday I heard an automated message that says “please enter the extension of who you want to talk to or if you don’t know the extension, press 00.” If you press 00 you hear the exact same message so you’re stuck in a loop. If you hit it enough times you can leave a message in their general mailbox. I left several messages and never heard from anyone. That number was for the local trucking company. Since I had no luck getting a hold of them, on Tuesday I called the original JC Penney number who originally called me about the delivery. They were trying to be helpful and when I talked to them they submitted a message to the delivery company and were surprised I never heard back. They also told me they’ve had several other complaints about them in the last 2 days. I ended up getting transferred a bunch of times within JCP (because I wasn’t willing to let this sit until I got transferred to someone who could help me). I finally talked to someone who gave me the phone number for the JCP shipping hub – Ceva trucking. The receptionist was rude and as soon as she heard the words “JC Penn” she transferred me to someone’s voicemail. I called back and she sent me to someone else’s voicemail. I called back AGAIN and was rude and said I didn’t want someone’s voicemail – I wanted this resolved. I stayed on hold until I talked to a rude guy and I tried to explain to him the problems I was having and after he said that he didn’t know why I was calling that 630 number that this was the only number I should have called. We arranged the Saturday delivery (I told him the person I talked to said they couldn’t do Saturday delivery) and then he said “see how easy it is when you call the right number?” Grrr Arrrgh. Terrible customer service and I’m not even confident that they will show up on Saturday.

Monday, November 2, 2009

Week 18

At 18 weeks, Banjo is now the size of a sweet potato.

We had a great babymoon weekend. Galena was beautiful – a little colder than we expected but we had a great time checking out the town, the shops and walking around. We toured some old houses and mansions and the b&b we stayed at was perfect. I was worried about staying at a b&b because I didn’t want to feel like I had to be social to the owners and the guests and was afraid I’d have to check in with them on what our plans were. That wasn’t the case at all. We had breakfast with them (which was delicious) and they were there to answer questions but that was about it. They were very outgoing and knowledgeable of the area. The Balloon Glow was canceled because it was too windy but we still went to the Halloween parade and the ghost walk. It was very relaxing and only 3 hours away. I think we’d definitely like to go back some day – but most likely a kid-free trip. I’m hoping we can find a babysitter for 2 nights in a few years.

Not too much going on baby-wise. Still not feeling those flutters again but after talking to the nurse I’m not as worried as I was last week. But I did order the Doppler monitor because with a little time I know I’ll start worrying (and probably panicking) again. I’m sleeping better which I know won’t last so I’m trying to relish each lovely moment of sleep. I know one day I will look back and want to remember what good uninterrupted sleep felt like. As I get bigger, I’ve heard sleep becomes more of an issue.

I got a great care package in the mail on Friday from my mom. She knitted me some “magical slippers” as she calls them. They’re pink and blue and white and she told me to wear them and then think really hard on what the gender is and I’ll magically know what it is. I think she sewed in some baby girl mojo into those slippers because she is convinced that Banjo is a girl. The majority seems to concur that it’s a girl. 71% of the votes on the poll voted for a girl. I also took some silly online quizzes based on how I’m feeling, what I’m craving, etc. and that along with the Chinese gender predictor say it’s a girl. 3 weeks is such a long time to wait to find out – there’s no way I could wait until April!

Friday, October 30, 2009


Now that I've recovered from my frantic worrying this past week, I'm feeling much more calm again. I'm debating on if I should buy one of those doppler heartbeat monitors. The ones at BabiesRUs are only amplifiers and the reviews are terrible. But I read great reviews from moms on the Hi Bebe doppler which is $80 without a screen and $100 with the screen (the screen tells you the baby heartbeats per minute). It's funny because before I was pregnant and even when I was first pregnant I scoffed at those things and thought they were silly. But having to wait almost a week for reassurance was nerve wracking and I don't want to stress out unnecessarily.

Today we're going to Galena for a Babymoon weekend. I never heard of a Babymoon until I got pregnant and was reading blogs and magazines and online articles and I found out about it. Basically it's a chance for mom and dad-to-be to have a nice relaxing vacation together before the baby arrives. They recommend taking a Babymoon during the 2nd trimester because mom is hopefully feeling less nausea, more energy and it's before the wonky 3rd trimester stuff begins. So we're leaving today to go to Galena for the weekend. Most of the leaves may have already fallen but it's only 3 hours away and we'll be staying at a Victorian b&b. On Halloween there's a parade and a balloon glow and we're signed up for a ghost walk. I'm looking forward to it.

I'm 18 weeks now and I 'll post a new belly picture when I get back.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Sigh of Relief

Of course the doctor’s appointment went well. And of course I was worrying over nothing. We could hear the heartbeat just fine. Coming in loud and clear at 155 beats per minute. They said it’s actually not common for me to have been feeling so many flutters last week and not be worried if I don’t feel them. I had tears in my eyes when I heard Banjo’s heartbeat because I was so afraid something was wrong. We also only heard static at first until we moved it around and found it.

Ok, what were my other items I wanted to discuss…
The nurse checked my lungs and everything sounds normal and fine. Probably related to allergies or a slight cold but to keep an eye on it and not over-exert myself. For the light-headed thing, no surprise there that I was told “This is a warning sign not to ignore” and no matter how busy I get, don’t forget to eat! (cheese nips would have come in handy). Not sure how many people can be in the delivery room but I did learn that assuming I don’t have a c-section, there’s no moving from my room to a delivery room – it’s all done in the same room. (reminder to go get that tour of the hospital) and the hospital can provide the information on how many people can/should be in that room. There are no restrictions on using a doula. They do have swine flu shots but they are limiting their distribution and only giving them to women in their third trimester right now. When I come back for my next appointment, even though I won’t be in my third trimester, they may have a better idea of their supply and I may be eligible. Unrelated to my list, I CAN sleep on my back until the 24th week – or if I am sleeping on my back and I feel short of breath then I should stop sleeping on my back. Even then, I can still sleep on my back but propped up with several pillows. I’ve gained exactly 10 pounds since getting pregnant. It’s a little more than I would’ve liked but nothing to be worried about. The nurse thinks it’s because I finally got my appetite back in the 2nd trimester and could start eating more regularly again. I know I’m not over-eating and somehow I still have a waist (it looks so funny from the front, a waist with a big belly). I should take more than one view on my weekly belly shot because I’m sure there will be a time very soon when I no longer have a waist. I’m about 2 weeks away from the 20th week (official halfway mark – yay!) so to have gained 10 pounds still leaves me with 20 pounds to gain the rest of the pregnancy. And if I happen to gain more than 30 pounds total, the world will not end.

All in all a very good and reassuring appointment. Hopefully I will sleep better tonight because I won’t be worrying so much. I also won’t be waking myself up every time I happen to roll on my back with panicked thoughts of “Oh no! I’m killing my baby!!!”
So the moral of the story is…STOP WORRYING. Ha ha, yeah, right. I think I’m good for the next 3 weeks or so and then I’ll coincidentally be ready for my next appointment with a new list of worries and concerns.

Where are my dang Cheese Nips??!

So every morning I bring new snacks with me to work. Usually raisins, an apple and some sort of yummy snack like cookies or today it was supposed to be Cheese Nips. I remember taking them out of the cupboard and I thought I remembered putting them in my bag because I do rememebr thinking "I hope these yummy Cheese Nips don't get smushed being next to my book" but then at 10:00 looking for my little munchy snack I found nothing. I looked in my bag...and then I looked again. I even looked in the little zipper compartment that is way too small to hold my Cheese Nips, but I looked anyway. NOTHING. So they are either on the counter at home or maybe they fell out of my bag and are in the front seat of my car OR (and this is the one I'm most certain of) someone on the train took them out of my bag while I was reading my book. Of course, they left my wallet and ipod but those Cheese Nips were just too tempting to leave behind. So, to whoever stole my Cheese Nips on the train this morning (and you sure were sly because I didn't even notice you)please meet me on the green line tonight at 5:15. I'll be at the State and Lake stop going to Harlem. You can give me some replacement Cheese Nips. Kthanxbai.

On baby-related news I am nervous about my doctor's appointment and have decided to obsess about Cheese Nips to pass the time. I should be leaving for the doctor's in about an hour. I have a list of questions to go over. My list looks something like this: "flutterings stopped since Oct 17; difficulty breathing/wheezing on 10/24 - 10/26; Lightheaded, almost passed out probably low blood sugar on 10/26; how many people can be in the delivery room?; restrictions/advice on using a doula?; info for classes at Prentice; tour of Prentice?; next ultrasound?; swine flu shot?; doppler monitor" I think I've got everything.
Update to be posted when I get back from the doctor.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Belly pictures

I took a 17 week belly picture but just haven't had a chance to upload it yet, so here it is. I haven't really thought I was getting much bigger but when I compare this picture to last week's - yeah, I'm getting quite plump!

When I was at Motherhood Maternity last week, I was trying on clothes and they had a fake belly in the dressing room so you could make sure the clothes would still fit as you got fatter. Of course I had to try it on. Here's what I'm guessing I'll look like in a few months. Kinda scary!!

In non-belly news, I'm not wheezing today which is good. But I also haven't felt my little flutters lately either. The last time I felt Banjo moving around was on Friday. I really want to hear that heartbeat. I'm not sleeping well and I am super cranky and irritable. I don't know how much of that is because I'm worried and a little stressed or just plain ole pregnancy hormones. Either way, there's not much I can do about it. Well, other than go to bed at 8:00 which is what I think I may do.

Monday, October 26, 2009

17th week

So I’m in the 17th week now. The baby is the size of an onion and is about 5.1” long.

Another site also used the comparison of a beanie baby. Just out of curiosity’s sake, I googled “banjo beanie baby” and what do you know? There’s a beanie baby named Banjo and it’s a cute little puppy. Awww.

I haven’t experienced any major changes in the past week. I have had some changes which I will call minor until I hear otherwise. I see the doctor on Wednesday so I will hopefully find out if this is anything to be worried about. I’ve been having trouble breathing – which I’ve read is a common complaint of being pregnant. It has something to do with “uterus is growing and taking up more room now, crowding your other organs” and “baby is putting pressure on your ribs which are leaving less room for your diaphragm. This means you will have difficulty breathing, and will almost feel faint at times.” It happens when I walk up the stairs (especially when bringing up a laundry basket) and normal tasks seem to exhaust me. After I take a shower, I have to sit down and take a rest. I’m wheezing a little bit – but not too bad.

I also had a nice little almost passing out spell that seemed to scare Pete but I think I can attribute it to low blood sugar. On weekdays, I have a pretty strict schedule of what and when I’m eating. I eat at 6:00 am, 10:00 am, noon, 2:00, 5:00 and 7:00 pm. And I’m eating healthy things like oatmeal, yogurt, raisins, apple, etc. as snacks. But on Sunday I was in a cleaning and being productive zone and I had a bagel with peanut butter at 8:00 am and then some juice around noon. I felt faint around 1:00 and went to sit down on the couch and everything went white and I thought I was going to pass out. I called for Pete and he got me some peanut butter crackers, lemonade and an orange and after eating that I started to feel better within about 10 minutes or so. Crisis averted but I never felt back to “normal” for the rest of the day. I was still having trouble breathing and just feeling out of sorts all day.

It’s also bugging me that I haven’t felt my little flutters in the last two days. So I am really looking forward to this doctor’s appointment so I can see what my blood pressure is, how my lungs sound and to listen to that baby’s heartbeat. I had the breathing issues again this morning but it’s not bad now. I will be taking it easy the next few days.

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Very first step to getting Banjo's room ready

It's not a big step but we gave away the chaise that was in my office - which will be Banjo's room. I loved that chaise. I bought it with a matching red couch when I moved into my condo and I loved that it was my first adult furniture purchase. It was so comfy and I spent many hours sitting on it reading (usually with a kitty snuggled nearby). Sadly it doesn't fit anywhere in our house now - style-wise or the size of it. We gave the couch away last year (after it sat in our dining room with an extra box spring for about 6 months). The couch went to a neighbor's son who was moving into his first apartment. I know I could have sold both on Craig's List but I liked knowing they're going to someone who needed them and will use them. The chaise went to my friend, Emily (along with a jewelry armoire that I decided I no longer wanted). Both are for her boutique. Shameless plug for Emily - Mr. and Mrs. Digz, new and recycled clothing and accessories in Andersonville. So I now have a bare space in my office as I slowly move the rest of the furniture to other places in the house. My bookcases will be moved upstairs to our bedroom to make a little sitting area. My computer is going into Pete's office in the basement. And my desk and filing cabinet for paying bills will be moved to the spare bedroom.
I have several other projects we want to get done in the next few months and hopefully my energy will last.
I'm feeling much better today - fewer cramps and I got a pretty good night's sleep. We've been pretty productive today and if this productivity lasts, I think we'll reward ourselves with dinner and a movie. I think we'll finally see Zombieland which we've been wanting to see since it first came out. And we have a gift certificate (the birthday gift that keeps on giving - dinner of the month gift certificates from John and Eileen) to dinner at a steak house nearby.

Friday, October 23, 2009

Where did my energy go?

I'm not exhausted like I was in the first trimester but I'm not feeling that great surge of energy I had a few weeks ago. I'm going to try to blame it on this dreary, rainy weather but it's actually a combination of pain, cramps and sleepiness. I'm getting used to the cramping and not freaking out about it anymore. It helps that I'm also feeling the fluttering every day so that reassures me that all is well. The cramps are also not as bad as the other day. But the leg cramps are becoming terrible. I'm getting them several times a night and they wake me up (always in my right leg for some reason) and I thrash around the bed and try to make it go away but then when it finally stops hurting I then can't fall back asleep. So I'm going to try eating more bananas but if anyone has a remedy for leg cramps (that doesn't involve bananas), please let me know! My leg is still sore throughout the day especially when I flex my foot (I know, so don't flex your foot).
I had another bad dream last night but the only part I remember was being as pregnant as I am now and bleeding that wouldn't stop. The dream woke me up and I ran to the bathroom but everything was fine.
I'm looking forward to a weekend inside and getting some things done since as of this moment I can say we have absolutely nothing planned and that thought just delights me!!!!

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Baby dream

I was in the middle of this dream when the alarm woke me up so I was able to remember it before I got out of bed but the worst part was just feeling so unsettled and inadequate. In my dream the baby was born (unfortunately I did not have a feeling if it was a boy or a girl - just "the baby"). I guess the delivery was fine because it was three days after the baby was born and we were all taking a trip to Kentucky for a week. So it was Pete's parents, my parents, Pete and I and 3 strange people I didn't know (their relationship was never really explained) On the car ride there the baby just kept screaming for what seemed like the entire ride and I seemed like I was the only one who noticed it - everyone else in the car just kept on talking like nothing was wrong. When we got to Kentucky, it wasn't Pete's parent's house - it actually looked like the house we used to go to in Shawnee, PA (villa 32C) and it was even decorated like it used to be in the 80's. I was worried about breastfeeding and every time I asked someone for help, they ignored me or said something to the effect of, "Don't worry - you'll be fine." I was holding the baby and I couldn't find a place where there weren't tons of people and I could find any privacy. Looking back, I guess it's a little odd that the poor baby hasn't eaten anything in 3, no wonder the baby was screaming. The baby was also spitting up which was odd because how can you spit up if you haven't eaten anything? It was chunky like oatmeal and then it was liquid and it was fluorescent yellow. I was sitting in a chair and wiping it off and the baby kept wiggling away from me. The baby was not the size of a newborn - more like a roly-poly 6 month old. I had found a chair in a room away from everyone and was getting ready to breast feed but the baby kept rolling away from me and actually squirmed off my lap to the floor. And then the alarm went off. I woke up knowing I was doing everything wrong and my poor baby was going to starve and wiggle away from me! Sorry, Banjo!!

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

I've had better nights

I don’t know what hit me yesterday. I think it’s a combination of a terrible night’s sleep and a sore neck and walking too much at lunchtime. Beginning in the afternoon I started getting horrible cramps which just got worse over time. By the time I got home I was couch bound. I checked the wisdom of the internet to reassure myself that it wasn’t anything serious and that yes, cramps are common throughout the entire pregnancy. As long as they’re not more intense than usual period cramps, just get through it. At least I was still randomly feeling the flutters so I was confident that Banjo was moving around. So I was resigned to feeling crappy and I was also freezing cold. I bundled up in sweats, a sweater, toasty socks and a blanket and curled in a ball on the couch (why was it sleeping on my side on the couch didn’t bother me but sleeping on my side in the bed wasn’t comfortable?) Pete got home and made me grilled cheese sandwiches and made sure I was comfortable, let the dog out and fed him and let me watch Grey Gardens on tv and checked on me throughout the night and did the dishes. I went to bed early and woke up feeling SO much better. It was a crappy night but the silver lining is that even when I’m a whiny lump, I have the best husband ever.