Children's Journals

This is my journal, with posts mainly about myself. If you want to see posts specifically about Maia or Liam, check out the links to their journals under the "My Interests" section on the right side of my blog page.

Belly Picture Comparison

View Belly Picture Camparison for Second Pregnancy!

Monday, January 31, 2011

29 Weeks

I don't really have much to add for this week's pregnancy update. I feel about the same physically, although the hip pain at night is becoming a little bit more acute. I think it's a posture thing, as opposed to a pressure thing, so I need to figure out what I need to change.
Mentally I am getting more and more worried about the impending labor. Not because of the pain and such...but because of the limitations that I seem to be encountering as a VBAC patient. I feel like I am still stuck in too much of a medical world and that I am going to be forced into limitations that might end with me having another c-section that could possibly have been prevented if nature was allowed to do it's thing. I fully blame the epidural I had last time for Liam's heart rate going up, which is why the c-section was done. And I feel I needed the epidural because I was induce a week early, so my body was not yet ready to go into labor (hence the slow progression and halt at 6 cm) and it was a harder labor, making it more painful to deal with. And I was essentially tied to a monitor the entire time, so I couldn't walk the halls or get into the shower or any of the other things that I know would help with pain management.
So, this time around, I really wanted to avoid all those limitations. I even switched practices to find doctors more open to such changes. But now it seems those same limitations are cropping back up. Due to my previous c-section, they want to monitor me at all times. So no walking the halls, or getting into showers...and who knows, perhaps not even being able to sit on a chair or birthing ball nearby if the monitor doesn't stay on very well. I really want to object and insist on walking the halls, etc, but I don't know if I can. I am afraid that I will be confined to the bed, and will end up on my back, or that I will still be so limited that the pain won't be as easy to manage and I'll eventually psyche myself out and end up going for the epidural again (which will disappoint me to no end), and possibly another c-section (which will upset me a lot).
AND, while I know I will need to schedule a c-section if the baby goes too late (a week or two past the due date), I was not prepared for the OB to ask me to schedule one for 39 weeks, just in case my check-up at that point showed that I might not be progressing as much as they thought and they felt it would end in a c-section anyway so why not do it ahead of time. I thought that I would only need a c-section if there was an emergency or if it was just getting way too much past the due date. I don't like the idea of having a convenient c-section appointment scheduled...if the doctor is on the fence about something, I want to take my chances and give nature the benefit of the doubt...NOT bow to guilt and uncertainty and opt for an already scheduled c-section. But I feel like I would be a "bad girl" by not doing what the doctor recommends...I mean, they are only trying to do what it safe and best for me and the baby, right? Ugh!
So...I am scared...and worried...and panicking. I feel like maybe now I didn't do enough searching for an OB practice that was exactly what I wanted. I really wanted a birthing center with medical capabilities, but couldn't seem to find that. And it seems crazy to change things this late in the game. But I am getting more and more worried about this, and I don't know what to do. Help.

*sigh* Anyway, the official baby info:

Your Baby This Week
Between weeks 26 and 27, your baby begins to experience REM sleep and he can dream! Your baby now weighs close to 3 pounds (1.3 kg) and is approaching 17 inches (43 cm) from head to toe.
His eyes are becoming more sensitive and might be able to notice when you are sitting in the sun or reading by a bright light. As baby grows, conditions in the uterus become a little cramped, so there isn't quite as much room to kick those tiny legs or wave those teeny arms. Therefore, you may feel a little less movement now, but that's normal.

Your Body This Week
Your tummy is continuing to grow and you're steadily gaining weight. As you edge closer to delivery day, premature labor is possible. Signs include menstrual-like cramping, lower back pain, and a leaking of amniotic fluid (sometimes accompanied by a pink or brown watery stain and a thick, mucous-rich plug). If these symptoms occur, call your health care provider right away (and go to the nearest hospital if you can't reach him or her). When caught early on, premature labor can be stopped. Following up with bed rest will help ensure your baby gets more time to grow. If you find yourself dreaming about that perfect little baby, you're not alone. Baby dreams, too--about you, the perfect mom!

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Fire and Ice

Every winter the town of Mount Holly has a Fire and Ice Festival, with the focus on two contests. The Ice is celebrated by ice carving/sculptures (pretty) and the Fire by chili (yummy). This is the second year we have gone, as I only just found out about it last year when I started looking into more things to do with Liam outside the home. This year it was just Liam, my Dad, and myself, and it was pretty fun. Cold, but not nearly as cold as last year. And since Liam is totally into fire trucks and such, it was even more enjoyable to go to the old historic fire station for the chili contest/tasting, and to see/ride the fire engines.

Let me share some of the pictures from the day (yesterday, by the way).

First, we took advantage of a short line to ride the fire trucks first thing. Sorry for the blurry pictures, but it's hard to take them in a bouncing fire truck.

After the ride, there is a quick stop so that Liam and PopPop can say hello.

Then we swung indoors to the college for the science-y portion of things, where Liam took a turn at being surrounded by a huge bubble tube. He seemed to enjoy popping it.

Liam insisted on posing with a fire hydrant at some point. Crazy boy.

Then we watched some dog-sledding demonstrations.

And then there were the ice sculptures.

Then finally, we ended the day with Liam getting to sit in a Police car and flash the lights, sound the horn and the siren, and chat with the police officer.

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Breathtaking Beauty

We got hit with more snow here. I don't like it. I am NOT a fan of winter, and actually use the word "hate" with it. I don't like the cold, and I don't like the mess that snow creates. Things are more hazardous when driving, it has to be cleaned up from various surfaces, it's very cold, and aside from pristine fields and trees and such, it leaves everything looking dirty and bleak.
BUT...I gotta say...this last snow-fall left the trees looking beautiful. At least the ones I drove past on the way to work. They were all coated with about 2" of snow, almost every single branch. And that left them looking so soft and beautiful. I passed a small wooded property and it nearly took my breath see all that soft intertwining white, with the sun shining on it. I really wish I could have pulled over and taken a picture of it, to show here on the blog, but with the lack of shoulders, there was no way to do that. But, it DID make that drive into work (luckily mostly brief for me) worth it, to be able to see that.

(But that's more snow after this. I'm serious)

Monday, January 24, 2011

Happy 28 Weeks

I am now 28 weeks pregnant! Don't know why this seems like an important's not really a milestone, as far as I can tell. But it feels special to me for some reason. I know that now the baby has a 90% chance of surviving if born now, and that is a huge relief to know.
I am still tired from things, but there isn't as much of the huge waves of exhaustion, at least right now. I do get out of breath more easily, especially given that there is less room for everything in there now. I can't eat as much at one sitting, but am hungrier a lot more frequently, especially in the evening. My body likes to wait until I am laying down to finally sleep to let me know I am hungry. Ugh. And bathroom trips are very plentiful.
The baby moves around a lot, although there are days when he/she is pretty quiet in there. There are sometimes some sharp bumps sliding around on the surface of my belly, as the baby scrapes a foot or elbow or knee around, or a broad pushing bulge as the baby strains his/her head (or butt?) against my belly. So far, no HUGE waves of movement as the baby turns...but there has been some jiggling...who knows what the baby is doing.

Here is my latest belly picture:

Official Baby Info

Your Baby This Week
It's official! You're in the last trimester of your pregnancy and you're edging closer to the big day with each passing week. Your baby is growing--and wow--so are you!
Your little angel is still little, between 2 and 2.5 pounds (0.9 to 1.1 kg) and 15 to 16 inches (38 to 40 cm) long. Your baby is actually a little "chubbier" than before. That's because the number of fat cells she has is increasing, filling out the skin from underneath. Eyebrows and eyelashes are also growing, and the hair on her head is getting longer. This is also an important time for your baby's brain development.

Your Body This Week
Your weight is climbing, too! During this month, you may begin to experience Braxton Hicks contractions--a kind of "dress rehearsal" for labor that isn't dangerous for you or baby. They occur when the uterus hardens and relaxes. Because your growing baby is putting more pressure on your pelvis, your ankles and feet may swell, your legs may cramp, and as your growing uterus bears down on your bladder, you may once again feel the need to urinate more often. And don't be alarmed if you start to feel out of breath; it's just baby pushing on your diaphragm.

Friday, January 21, 2011

Not In New York

I am not going to be in New York this weekend. Nope, I will still be in New Jersey. I would like to be in New York, but unfortunately, I didn't realize that I wanted to be there until this past Monday, when it was too late to make sure I could be in New York.
Why do I want to be in New York this weekend?

Because Stephanie Pearl-McPhee will be there.

I love reading her blog, and her books, and I've spent the last year and a half not only reading her current posts, but slowly catching up from her posts from the very beginning of her blog (January 2004). So I get a good dose of her daily, reading several posts at a time. I am only up to October of 2007, but it's enough to have followed her on several book tours and visits to the US. Enough that I have wanted a chance to go to one of her speeches/classes when she came close enough to New Jersey, and maybe get a chance to meet her in person and say hello, and perhaps even wave some knitting project at her (not that mine are all that impressive).
So, when reading her current blog entries, I was excited when I realized she was finishing up another book. That meant book tour at some point. I figured sometime in 2011 she would be busying flying all over again, and hopefully she would come close enough to where I would be able to attend (but hopefully not around April, when I am due to have the baby...she IS a doula, but I don't think she would appreciate having to stop her class/speech to deliver my child). I checked her Tour page several times, but it had no updates on it.
Then apparently I didn't check it for 3 weeks or so and that's when it happened...the update. I happened to catch a random comment made by a fellow reader of the blog, something about attending her class this upcoming weekend. And I wondered what class it could be. And that reminded me that I hadn't looked at the Tour page in a week or two (or maybe three). So I pulled it up...and sure enough...tour info was listed for 2011. And her closest stop? New York City. And was her first stop...and it was this weekend. Wait, THIS weekend? As in, less than 5 days? I don't plan for things that quickly, so I got a little panicky at what I should do, but I decided to look into the details of the weekend. And it turns out that the decision was already made for me. The event was all booked up. *sad sigh* There wasn't a way to go see her this weekend. I had missed my chance, at least for a good part of the year (unless more dates/locations get added to her page).
I am really hoping that maybe in the fall she'll make it down this way again. That maybe, just maybe, she'll make it to New Jersey. In 2007 she was at a Borders in Marlton, NJ....which is about 15-20 minutes from where I live. That Borders is no longer there, but dude....she was SO close (I, sadly, didn't know who she was at that point and wasn't reading her blog. So there is hope that she might be close again. There are a few local knitting stores nearby, and several bookstores. can hope, right? But honestly, I would even be happy with something as close as Philly. I'll send out some good knitterly vibes during the intentions part of my weekend yoga practice, and we'll see.
In the meantime...hope you are enjoying New York, Stephanie!

Monday, January 17, 2011

27 Weeks and moving

No time to post more than official info:

Your Baby This Week
It's official--you and your baby are starting your third trimester and are well on your way to delivery day!
As growth continues, your baby weighs in at over 2 pounds (1 kg). And because his body is more developed, measurement no longer goes from rump to crown, but from head to toe--about 15 inches (38cm)! Your baby can suck his thumb now, which is actually a good thing! It helps calm him, while also helping to strengthen jaw muscles and encourage the suckling reflex. Your baby can even cry now, but you won't be able to hear him.
Your baby's eyelids are starting to open, and he can actually open and close his eyes while in the womb.

Your Body This Week
By now your weight gain is likely disturbing your sense of balance, leaving you a bit tipsy at times. Getting around may be more difficult, and sitting behind the wheel of your car may become uncomfortable. This is the time when stretch marks on your breast and tummy can become most apparent. Although medical evidence is lacking, anecdotally, many women report that applying cocoa butter now through the end of pregnancy may help keep stretch marks from forming or help them to fade more quickly after birth.

Friday, January 14, 2011

Goodbye Second Trimester

I am now midway through my 27th week, and can say I am 6 months pregnant. So I am also now beginning my third trimester. Two-thirds of the way done. The end is getting closer and closer and it seems to be speeding up. I don't have much time to finish off what I need to before then, it feels like. I really don't want to be frantically doing things that last month before the baby is born...I'd like to try to take it easy. But it seems like everyday life gets in the way of the things I need to do. You wouldn't think I would have much to do the second time around, but somehow it's plenty. At least for the time I have left to do it in.
I knit a beautiful blanket for Liam during my first pregnancy, and I really feel I should do the same for this baby as well (not fair otherwise), so I really need to get a move-on with that. I had started Liam's right at my halfway point, so I am already 6 weeks behind. I don't have to register for things or make huge decisions on baby items, but we DO need to get a few things for the new baby's room...a dresser, a lamp or two, maybe some decor (unless we reuse what was in Liam's room), and a few other items. Plus, there is actually clearing out the room intended for the baby. It's currently a craft room, with bookshelves lining one wall, and craft bins and shelves lining the other wall. All those need to be moved out of there, which means re-cleaning the computer room to make room for it (somehow it got a lot of extra clutter in it again). Then when the room is cleared out, I am considering re-carpeting it (it's soft, but has bulges/wrinkles in it and is a weird green-blue color), and probably repainting the walls in something neutral (we tend to let the furniture, carpet, decor and extras put the colors/theme in the room). I'd like to get all of that done by the middle/end of March, so that I have (hopefully) most of April to just take it easy...and knit. I am okay if all I have to do is knit a lot.
Any volunteers to help with moving stuff around, repainting walls, etc.?

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Happy Birthday, Darlene!

Just wanted to send a Happy Birthday wish to my mother-in-law, Darlene (even though I know she will probably never see this). To celebrate (besides bringing her from West Virginia to our house in New Jersey to visit for a week and see her grandson), we are going to take her out to dinner tonight, to the place of her choosing. I feel like I should do more somehow, since one dinner, and even just one week of hanging out with her, isn't enough to make up for how little we actually call her or communicate with her the rest of the year. I am sure she will say it's more than enough. *sigh*

Tuesday, January 11, 2011


I noticed the baby hiccuping for the first time today! Liam used to have them all the time during my pregnancy with him. I had forgotten about those. This morning I was in a meeting and felt what I thought was a tiny little kick. Then I felt it again. And then again. And they continued, at a pretty steady rhythm. And then I realized that it was hiccups. So very cute. Just wanted to share.

Oh, side note...I updated the pregnancy belly comparison page to include comparisons between my first pregnancy and this current one. So if you want to see how much bigger I might be this second pregnancy, then check out the link at the top of this journal.

Monday, January 10, 2011

26 Weeks of Pregnancy

Another week of pregnancy done...still a few more to go. But I am at the end of my second trimester, so another milestone almost reached. The baby is kicking up a storm and has started really doing the River Dance practices that Liam did when he was in the womb. The other night the baby was doing barrel rolls in there, I swear. With all limbs least it felt that way.

Here is the latest belly picture. Sorry it's so crappy, it was taken at night, with the iPhone, which doesn't do well in low-light situations. And for some reason I look shorter in this picture. Ugh.

Official 26-Week info:

Your Baby This Week
Your baby is getting chubby. She weighs about 32 ounces (1 kg) and measures more than 9 inches (23 cm) in length. You're continuing to grow, too, which is a sign that you're both healthy!
A pattern similar to life outside the womb is starting to develop. You may notice a distinct wake-sleep cycle, where periods of activity alternate with quiet times on a regular basis. Your baby's senses are coming into full bloom. She can't see yet, but she can hear, taste and feel, and her brainwave patterns are similar to those of a newborn. If your health care provider listens your baby's heartbeat now, he or she may notice a skipped beat, which is a condition known as an arrhythmia. Often this is normal and disappears as the heart matures. If it's still present when you are ready to deliver, a fetal heart rate monitor can detect any signs of distress.

Your Body This Week
Two thirds of your pregnancy is over, and you're really starting to feel the backaches, leg cramps and headaches more frequently as pressure within your pelvis builds. You'll continue to gain weight at the rate of about one pound (.45 kg) per week. As your baby grows, your uterus pushes up towards your ribs, which may feel sore. As uterine muscles stretch, you may occasionally feel a "stitch" in your side, similar to what happens when you run. But it won't be long now. Rest up, stay off your feet when you can, and get ready to be a mom!

Monday, January 3, 2011

34 Years....and 25 weeks

34 years ago today, at 9:04am, my mother entered into the world of motherhood as I entered into the world itself. It's been a crazy journey, but seems to have turned out well so far. So, Happy Birthday to myself. How will I celebrate it? Well, probably not all that much today. I am at work right now (saving up my vacation for maternity leave), and when I get home, I want to get some cleaning done that has been bothering me. But I will probably make time for some light exercising (time to get back into a routine), and also for a little bit of knitting, so that maybe I have some hope of finishing this cardigan this year. Heh.

I am also 25 weeks pregnant, so I'll supply the usual official baby info. Nothing new in terms of my personal updates on things.

Your Baby This Week
Wow! Your baby is almost 9 inches (23 cm) long-almost half his birth length! While his weight is still low at about 1.5 pounds (0.68 kilograms), he could survive if he decided to make an entrance into the world now!
Among the most prominent changes this week take place in the skin, which gradually becomes thicker and less transparent. It's still wrinkled, as if there is more than he needs, but your baby will literally "grow" into his skin as time passes. Your baby's heartbeat may be strong enough now that other people can hear it when pressing their ear to your belly!

Your Body This Week
Are you itching? Are there tiny bumps popping up all over that are driving you mad? Many women report all-over itching called Puppps that may begin as early as this week, and could last until you deliver. If the itching really causes you distress, talk to your health care provider about an anti-itch cream. In addition, increased blood flow to your lower body may result in hemorrhoids (dilated blood vessels in the rectum that can itch or burn). Constipation can exacerbate them, so speak to your caregiver about a stool softener. Heartburn and indigestion may also increase, making you feel uncomfortable. Try not to go hungry for too long because it can worsen the problem.

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Happy New Year!

Welcome to 2011. I wish everyone a good year, filled with lots of promise and nice things. God knows most of us could use it.