Tuesday, February 25, 2014

19 weeks!! /Spilling the Beans

I changed my top for this picture 'cause I was looking a HOT mess!

I am soooo excited today because I can (sort of) breathe! I've been using these babies Breathe Right Nasal Strips, Extra Clear for Sensitive Skin

everyday for the past few weeks and I haven't relied on them as much in the past few days...at least not during the day. Maybe my nose is officially spreading!!! Oh happy day!!

This past week on EH's birthday (Feb 19th), we trekked over to see David's mom and dad with the good news. We presented them with a cute little card, which I wish I had taken a picture of now, that said something about " a new granddaughter to love" and included one of the whelp's sonogram pictures. The response was epic!! E-PIC!

My mother-in-law screamed "Mi Nieta!! Mi Nieta!!"(which means my granddaughter)  for like 10 minutes straight. The rest of the night was spent plying me with food. Go figure. My father-in-law physically interacted with me for the first time ever. He cut me like 20 pieces of mango after dinner and I dutifully ate every piece..even though I was stuffed to the gills. We had already broke the news to my brother-in-law and sister-in-law so they were in on the surprise.

I'm super thankful that I got such a great, loving, excited reaction from my in-laws because, with the exception of my brother, the reaction from my side of the family was pretty muted. I invited my brother and my father over for dinner to break the news. My brother was super excited and happy for us. My dad's reaction was a bit more solemn. I believe his response was, "That's great! You got what you wanted." My dad has always been a bit subdued but the response was still a little weird to me.

Whomp, Whomp!

I told my mother via email because I didn't want to deal with her in person. I got a phone call from her two days later scolding me for sending the news to her email address because , "I don't check it that often so it's lucky I saw it." Grrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr.  Now, this response I expected so it didn't affect me as much. Unfortunately, my mother has a knack for making anything that isn't about her....about her.

She said congratulations but there wasn't any real excitement or happiness in her voice. She extended an invitation for me to contact her in a week, when she's off work, or so if I wanted to meet up with her and chat. I probably won't be doing that because I could tell she didn't really mean it. Anyway, I can't imagine what parenting advice she could possibly give me. EH and I have decided that we're going to leave any further contact/involvement up to her.

In the meantime, I'm getting ready to tell my gargantuan extended family and our friends about the baby. I'm doing it via facebook/email because I can't see myself calling everyone individually. I searched all over Etsy to find some options and was surprised that there were a bunch of announcements to say the baby was born...but not much to say, "I'm pregnant."

Option #1

Source: LCODesignandPaperie

Option #2:

Source: EverburgPhotography

I'm leaning towards option #1....but I like that we would be able to include an ultrasound photo in Option #2. I think EH is gonna be the tie-breaker here.

Friday, February 21, 2014

Blueprint Marriage Retreat

taken during a break in the marathon weekend...

On Valentine's weekend, EH and I went off to the marriage retreat put on by our marriage group. We were pretty excited to see everyone again, especially since we haven't been able to meet for the past month due to the crazy snowstorms we've been getting up here in the north.

Our retreat took place in Bloomington, New Jersey at the Star Lake camp. I really wish we could have walked the grounds and get a feel for the place but it was pretty cold so we spent most of our time indoors. We arrived at the camp at about 9PM and got settled before we plunged headfirst into the first introductory session. It didn't last too long, thank goodness, because I was pretty beat at 9PM! We did end up having a pretty heavy one-on-one session with another married couple that turned out to be a real blessing.

We shared a little about what we've been going through the past few years and some issues we want to keep working on. They shared some hard things that they've gotten through in their marriage and prayed the most awesome power prayer for us at the end of our session. It really was a balm because at the end of the weekend we were feeling much more secure that our little one was a gift that we would ,indeed, get to open. We also made some really good friends!

Back in our room, a little gift bag was waiting for us that included this gem, 101 Conversation Starters for Couples. We haven't cracked it open yet but I'm really looking forward to it because I loooooveeeee talking. I don't know if I should keep it in the car or keep it in the bedroom. Did I mention there was no television in our room?? I was sooooo happy that we would truly get to spend some quality time together without the darn television. I've become increasingly concerned we spend entirely too much time on media. EH and I have already agreed that we want to severely limit our television/social media usage when the whelp is born.

The next morning we started our first session at 9AM right after breakfast. We reviewed the chapters we'd read so far and had some nice discussions about hardships in marriage. There were a few cool couples' team-building activities as well. In one, we had to write about something we found difficult to live up to in our marriage...using our non-dominant hand. In another, we had to make a play-dough sculpture together with one hand behind our backs.

We had a discussion about sex and intimacy, which I thought could have been a little more in depth, but for the time that we had it was pretty good. I really would have liked to talk about how social media, internet and television serve to inhibit intimacy, but maybe I'll get to bring it up another time.

Since Saturday was our only full day, we went until 7pm. After, we found a cool spot and played a guys vs girls game of Taboo. My favorite part of the trip by far was getting to know everyone better and feeling more connected to our new church family
We look warm, don't we!?

18 weeks!!

18 Weeks

I underwent some sort of mutant transformation this week, ya'll! I took that pic and then compared it to my 17 week pic and was amazed at the difference. I really haven't been eating all that extra. In fact, I've only gained a pound since my last Ob/Gyn appointment. I'm shaking my head at the wonders of the human body.

I've been watching the scale like a hawk hoping to GAIN weight but so far no dice. This week we had an appointment with the Ob/Gyn and we asked if we should be worried about my lack of weight gain. She said as long as I was healthy, the amount of pounds I put on didn't really matter. That put my mind at ease.

I've been reading these baby books that are telling me I should be gaining 1-2 pounds a week and it just ain't happening for me. I have to keep reminding myself that every woman's body reacts differently in pregnancy and also that I wasn't exactly a toothpick before I got pregnant so minimum weight gain might be best for me in the long run.

Now I'm concerned about where exactly this child will go when she gets bigger! She was only 6 inches and 6 ounces last week and I've barely crossed the mile marker of my pregnancy. I'm not the tallest tree in the forest, ya'll! So far, breathing is a little more difficult, my sinuses are kicking my butt, my ribs hurt when I cough and I'm having some back pain. I'm pretty sure there's no more room to grow upwards so I guess it'll have to be outwards.

In other cool news....I'm feeling some movement! Or at least what I think is movement... It mostly happens at night when I'm laying in bed. I've felt some sharp pains, which could be kicks, and some rolls. I like the rolls better than the kicks. :-)

17 weeks!

I'm feeling so grateful these days! So many wonderful things have happened that I've lapsed in writing about them. Does that ever happen to you? I'm so focused on enjoying these experiences that I've neglected to document them. Which is not great because I'm definitely one of those people that needs to be reminded of my blessings on a regular basis. Bear with me as I upload a few posts that are long overdue!

The whelp at 17 weeks! This is my favorite pic so far...  

17 Weeks
EH and I visited with the Perinatologist  to complete the AFP (alpha-fetoprotein) test, which turned out perfectly normal, thank God! All other testing has turned out normal as well, so far. The tech asked if we would like to find out the sex and we were excited like a kid at Christmas to find out who would be joining our family.


I am beyond excited because I've always harbored dreams of raising a little girl but it was so nice to see that EH was just as excited and emotional as I was when the news was revealed. It seemed that we said the name we had chosen for a girl at least 50 times during that appointment. It sounded so good to have that name leave our lips. At first glance I swore she looked like me but the longer I look, the more I see EH.

The whelp was hungry again during this appointment because I didn't get a chance to eat as much food as I would have liked. We watched as she repeatedly hit herself on the head trying to find her mouth with her little fist. And once again, mama felt bad. :-(  I gotta get better at feeding myself.

17 weeks...note my chic head scarf
I popped at 17 weeks. It was so weird because one day I was fat and the next day I was pregnant. Ha! We have held off on taking weekly pictures out of fear but I'm happy to say that we're coming out of that fog. We continue to listen to her with our doppler everyday and so far have had no problem finding her each time. I've limited myself to twice a day--once in the morning when I wake up and once before bed. I can't say enough how much it puts me at ease to hear that heartbeat thumping away. 

On the way home, EH and I daydreamed aloud about what we thought the whelp would be like; what would she look like? what would her personality be? What would her voice sound like? So many things to look forward to.