Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Week 21

Week 21 information can be found here. In short, the average measurements are 10.5 inches and about 12.7 ounces, and he's big enough now that you've probably been feeling his movements. Based on last week's measurements, our weight is slightly more than that, but we're doing well on size so far.

I've been feeling a lot of activity though it was quiet yesterday. This morning, I felt movement higher up so there's movement all over the place. Before this morning, all the kicking has been very low. Little Miss finally got to feel the kicks. I think she was expecting something more exciting. She keeps asking Santa to get toys for her baby brother. We did get a stocking. Santa isn't bringing toys, but the little boy will be getting his first Jets onesies. Little Miss should be satisfied with that unless I find some little toy to put in the temporary stocking.

I've grown quite a bit in the last few weeks, and it may freak me out that we're only halfway through. Still, it is a comfort to know most of my maternity clothes are still too big. I can still wear a lot of non-pregnancy clothes - shirts, cardigans and jeans if I'm creative. I have been itchy with the growing, but it hasn't been unbearable if I remember to moisturize. I didn't get any stretch marks the first time, but this time, I can see some. The funny thing is that my stretch marks are clear so you can only see them if the light hits them just right, just around the belly button. I moisturized a lot the first time. Not that anybody sees my belly, but I'm glad they're not completely hideous. I mean, it's worth it for a beautiful baby blah blah blah.

Oh, we do have a name.  That part was easy.  We had a boy name and a girl name when Little Miss was born.  We just carried over the boy name.  Having a name and gender helps me a lot.  Otherwise, I'm not one of those mothers who just bonds with the being growing inside her.  I kind of ignore it most of the time except when I have to (not gracefully) get up from the couch.  Generally, it's not until we meet that I connect though.  I need a face because the 3D one doesn't do it for me.  Even then, I remember being like "wait, we did that" every time I looked at Little Miss as a newborn.  Bizarre.

New Foods Report

I was on my own for dinner the other day and wanted something quick and easy so I tried this. It wasn't bad. When I heated it up for a second little bowl, I did add some chicken stock I had leftover. It helped. It actually did get better for leftovers though with the chicken stock and some salt and pepper. I notoriously don't salt and pepper anything, but this one needs a little taste. I bet a little crushed red pepper flakes would be good, too.

Ingredients

  • 8 ounces sweet Italian sausage
  • 2 teaspoons olive oil
  • 1 cup vertically sliced onion
  • 2 teaspoons minced garlic
  • 1 1/4 pounds tomatoes, chopped
  • 6 tablespoons grated fresh pecorino Romano cheese, divided
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt 1/8 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/4 cup torn fresh basil leaves
Preparation
  1. Cook pasta according to package directions, omitting salt and fat; drain.
  2. Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Remove casings from sausage. Add oil to pan; swirl to coat. Add sausage and onion to pan; cook 4 minutes, stirring to crumble sausage. Add garlic; cook 2 minutes. Stir in tomatoes; cook 2 minutes. Remove from heat; stir in pasta, 2 tablespoons cheese, salt, and pepper. Sprinkle with remaining 1/4 cup cheese and basil.
On Sunday, I made a salad to go along with this dish my friend made.  I think they complimented each other nicely or could be combined if you're creative like that.  It was super easy even if it's weird to cook a salad.
 
  • Roast cubed butternut squash for 45 minutes in 2 tablespoons olive oil and 1 tablespoon maple syrup, salt and pepper.
  • Prepare bed of fresh arugula (I used mixed greens.).
  • Lay roasted squash over arugula.
  • Sprinkle 2 tablespoons of toasted and slivered walnuts over squash and arugula (I used slivered almonds).
  • Drizzle dressing over top and sprinkle fresh grated parmesan or pecorino romano over it.
Recipe for Dressing

  • Good olive oil
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 3/4 cup apple cider or apple juice or orange juice
  • 2 tablespoons cider vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons minced shallots
  • 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
Combine the apple cider/apple juice/orange juice, apple cider vinegar, and shallots in a small saucepan and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Cook for 6 to 8 minutes, until the liquid is reduced to about 1/4 cup. Take off the heat, whisk in the mustard, 1/2 cup olive oil, 1 teaspoon salt, and 1/2 teaspoon of pepper. Serve while squash is warm: it will slightly wilt the arugula.

It was a little more mustardy than I care for so I made a quick little vinaigrette with the cider vinegar.  I think any slightly sweet dressing would compliment the squash, but I also think the salad stood on its own.  That said, I could have been happy with just the butternut squash for lunch so I suppose it depends on your preference.

Weekend Update - It's the Most Wonderful Time of the Year

Last Friday, it's a pretty good bet that I went to bed early. I don't remember. Friday is usually the day I try to do as little as possible. On Saturday, Little Miss and I sort of met friends at the Botanical Gardens. We met up with friends, but Little Miss was collecting stamps so couldn't stop and chat and then they had to go. Afterwards, we met with Sister-in-Law and Nephew though. In the meantime, Little Miss and I took lots of pictures and enjoyed the unseasonably warm weather. The four of us went to lunch and then Little Miss and I went home. I napped, and she may or may not have. That night, Little Miss went to bed while I stayed up and watched Saturday Night Live while it actually aired on television. Weird!

On Sunday, I woke up with Little Miss for our morning routine of playing board games.  I lost as is tradition - and not because I fix the games so she wins.  Then, I had a Christmas lunch with my friends.  Yummy food, good friends followed by gifts and pedicures is the way to celebrate a holiday.  I'll post the recipe in a separate post in case you want to give it a go.  We've been on a good new food kick lately.  I've decided that Husband and I need to try a new food a week instead of Little Miss (or in addition to anyway).  We've fallen off the new food wagon.  When I got home Sunday, I tidied a little when I realized how little time I had to do so this week before we hosted Christmas Eve and played more board games with Little Miss.  She received Monopoly Junior for Christmas so far, and I've lost a couple of rounds of that game.  The rules are much easier with the junior version, but the kid will be a great Monopoly player.  She hates spending money and is very particular on what she purchases.  She's an evil landlord, too. 

Friday, December 20, 2013

Week 20

We're halfway there! Not scary at all. Really. You can find more information here, but we had the big 20 week ultrasound. The radiologist and tech estimated the baby weighs about 13 ounces but is measuring a couple of days behind where we are which is normal and doesn't mean too much. It's not an exact science and the due date is probably a little off. It was confirmed that it is a boy (again). He is still very active, mostly at night. All the ultrasound photos were blurry because he was constantly moving hands, legs and body. Everything seems to be progressing as it should, no cause for alarm.  Unfortunately, Husband had to work and couldn't make the ultrasound, but I brought my mom.  It was nice to have someone with me, and she had a lot of enthusiasm and would have asked the same questions Husband would have had.

Poor Little Miss is very eager to feel the baby move and hasn't had any luck so far.  Maybe this weekend, I'll have a bit of chocolate and see if she'll get lucky.  He seems to quiet down whenever she is near or talks to him.  Last night, she was quiet so he didn't know she was there and she just barely felt some movement. Next doctor's appointment is in two weeks.

Weekend Update - Christmas Preparations

I'm pretty sure we did nothing on Friday which is our favorite activity - though I think I tidied up a little. On Saturday, Little Miss was picked up at noon to do some holiday preparations with the In-Laws and to spend the night at their apartment. This gave Husband and I the oppportunity to make and freeze 211 potato and cheese pierogi. Husband made the filling the night before, but we have a nice system down to making them. I hooked up the iPad and watched a movie while he watched college football. We were a well-oiled machine. We were done in time to watch Saturday Night Live. 

We slept late on Sunday. I hit the grocery store in the afternoon and then Little Miss came home. The weekend seemed like it flew (because it did).

Friday, December 13, 2013

Week 19

The baby is the size of a mango which always makes me want to have a margarita because that's how I like my mangoes. He is 6" long and about 8 ounces. You can find more here.

Last weekend, there was definitely a party in my tummy (inside joke for those who have the Yo Gabba Gabba soundtrack). Even Husband got to feel a few kicks and said he expected the baby to break out of confinement at any moment. It's been pretty quiet since then though. I felt some flutters with Little Miss, but she wasn't a kicker. This is quite unmistakable.

The doctor appointment was pretty uneventful. I gained a little weight from 4 weeks ago, but I lost a little from 2 weeks ago, but overall they were happy. I'm much bigger despite my weight dipping ever so slightly. I fit into practically nothing except the same few pieces of clothing, but I don't quite fit into maternity clothes which is so very helpful. Hope work enjoys the few outfits I wear because they'll see them a lot. Maybe I'll buy some scarves or big earrings to throw them off.  This time, he found a heartbeat right away which was nice and less stressful.  We have our big 20-week ultrasound to check on the development and verify gender next Wednesday.  So, that'll be our next milestone and opportunity to exhale a little more.

 

Weekend Update - Breakfast with Santa (and Nephew)

On Friday, I met a friend for dinner (well, she had a snack and I had yummy Pad Thai) and a movie. It was really relaxing and fun. The local theater was redone early this year and now has full recliners so you get a nice roomy, comfortable seat. You do need to reserve your seat so you have to buy your parties' tickets together, but it's a small price to pay for the ultimate comfort.

A long time ago, we promised Nephew that he could have a sleepover. We had already rescheduled a couple of times, and it finally happened.
He arrived on Saturday, and he and Little Miss played really well together building with this fort kit we have (it's really giant tinker toys). Then, he brought a SpongeBob gingerbread set to decorate. The three of us did that for a few minutes before the kids got bored, and I had to finish it up. I'm blaming the kids though because it looked like a 6 and 8 year old decorated it. They probably could have done a better job.
They bickered a bit the rest of Saturday, and we thoroughly underestimated how long the bedtime routine would take, but they finally fell asleep. They have totally different sleep habits between lots of night lights and very few night lights, between silence and music. So, it took awhile for them to settle down.
On Sunday, they woke early and played. Husband and I lounged in bed for a little while, but then it started to snow and the kids were super excited and came in to tell us. At that point, we got up and got ready for Breakfast with Santa. The kids were great (though ours was admittedly cranky). We had French toast or pancakes, sausage and juice and then the kids met Santa. The pictures came out really cute. After Nephew headed home, Little Miss and I baked chocolate peanut butter cup brownies and then took a little nap. Then, it was dinner, eating the brownies and bedtime again.
The power went out Sunday night a couple of times so Little Miss was a little unsettled, and we all slept poorly, but Husband and Little Miss stayed home which probably helped. Little Miss had a snow day while Husband had a delay but worked from home. I was jealous, but I had a lot of work to do and got most of it done so it all worked out for the best.

Oh, I forgot!  Saturday morning, we finished decorating the tree so we're officially decorated for Christmas.  We have a handful of Nativity scenes, one of which is the Fisher Price one.  It is a massive set that spans most of our living room.  It was nice to see it get some play this year for the first time in the 3 years we've had it.  Now if only Little Miss wouldn't set off all of the sound features at the same time, we'd be good.

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Make Room

We haven't really put much thought to where to put the baby.  To start, he'll go in our room so Little Miss can get some sleep because someone in the apartment should.  Little Miss asked where he would sleep when he came.  He said he could sleep in her room.  She would just need some room to get out of bed.  So, she gestured and said, "Here could be the crib" and then another gesture, "and here is some room" and then another gesture, "and here's my bed."  We thought it was very generous of her, and she may have to share her room, but he wouldn't start off there.  When we told her how often babies wake up in the night, she agreed.

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

When You Should Call for Your Mommy in the Middle of the Night

Last week, Little Miss went to bed late after our Hanukkah party.  I was frustrated because I hate to get up out of bed when I'm sleeping.  Also, I knew Monday morning was going to be challenging because she went to bed late.  Husband offered to get up, but she told him she needed me.  So, I was ready to sternly tell her to go back to sleep.  I went trudging to her bedroom and, when I got there, she was covered in her own blood (well, I like to assume it was her own).  I'll give the kid this one.  Good call on calling for Mommy. 

She stayed pretty calm though her eyes showed a bit of panic.  I got her tissues while I stripped the bed and, once she was done with the tissues, we washed her face and hands up and got new pajamas.  She went to bed pretty quickly after that, but I left her some extra tissues just in case.

The next day, Husband said he could have helped her, but she told him it was big so she needed Mommy.  It's flattering, but I also really love my sleep.

Monday, December 9, 2013

Weekend Update - Long Weekend

Thanksgiving went well.  The day after Thanksgiving, we traditionally get out tree.  Husband had to do some work, and then I wasn't feeling well so we did nothing. 

Saturday morning, we did get our tree - quickly in the next town over versus traveling an hour away to cut our own.  Last year, we had such a great tree.  From the way this current tree is drinking water, we may have great luck again.  After we got the tree, Little Miss and I met a friend for lunch and a movie.  Little Miss loves going out with the girls so it was fun.  Then, we went home for dinner and a quiet evening.

On Sunday, we did some tidying up and then went to a party at a friend's house to celebrate Hanukkah.  Little Miss has been obsessed with Hanukkah since last year.  She played games, received presents and got to light the menorah.  She asked for a menorah, but it was a little too late on the fifth night.  I told her she could have one next year if she wanted.  We got home after bedtime, but she was good about going right to bed.  We were pretty sure Monday was going to be a rude awakening after such a long weekend.

Books Read in November 2013


  1. If Only by Cherise Sinclair  (NOTE:  This is part of the Masters of the Shadowlands series.  The order of which can be found here.)
  2. Rumor Has It by Jill Shalvis  (NOTE:  This is part of the Animal Magnetism series.  The order of which can be found here.)
  3. The Mother-Daughter Book Club by Heather Vogel Frederick  (NOTE:  This is part of the Mother-Daughter Book Club series.  The order of which can be found here.)
  4. Dark Witch by Nora Roberts  (NOTE:  This is part of the Cousin O’Dwyer trilogy.  This is the first book in the trilogy. You can find the release order for the rest of the trilogy (and the rest of Nora Roberts’s book for the year) here.)
The month wasn’t bad. I read all of these in the beginning of the month before starting the book club book which took me about a month to finish. You’ll see that one in December. No big standouts, but I enjoyed each of them. The books in the series were compelling enough that I’m frustrated by the long wait for the next book though The Mother-Daughter Book Club series is complete so I do have the second book ready to go. I usually take a break because the series is for much (much) younger readers so I can only handle so much at once of 6th grade angst.

Movies Watched in November 2013

  1. This is 40
  2. Frozen
Very lackluster movie month (and I have a feeling December will be just as bad). This is 40 was what I expected but mostly because I heard a lot of reviews about it before viewing. I liked it, but it was more of a drama than a comedy. Frozen was adorable. Little Miss had trouble sitting through the entire movie, but she has picked favorite characters and loved the music. I bought her the soundtrack for Christmas, but it did sell out so I’m hoping it arrives before then. If not, I get the free mp3 version which should satisfy her until it arrives.  It amuses me that her favorite character is Elsa, the sister who spends the least amount of time on screen. 

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Week 18

Week 18 is ridiculous! We're just shy of halfway through. The baby is the size of a sweet potato according to this. Typically, the baby could be yawning, hiccuping and the like. This makes sense because Little Miss hiccuped her way through her first ultrasound video. This little one is already active based on previous peeks in there. Lots of kicking (whereas Little Miss was more of a roller than a kicker). 

I can still fit into my pre-pregnancy tops and pants (with some cheats), but it's a close fit. I may be able to get some more wear out of anything with a little give, but I think I'm in a final countdown to when my button-down blouses get packed away. I'm lucky that I never got high blood pressure or any swollen feet or ankles. I'm hoping to be as lucky this time. I haven't gotten any epic bloody noses this time which is nice. Overall, no complaints. Oh, if only a woman could live in the second trimester forever. 

I go to the doctor on Friday for a check up.  I'd like one check up where things go smoothly.  I don't think that's too much to ask, but the little one disagrees.  We should get our 20-week ultrasound/sonogram appointment as well which is exciting as it's been a whole month since we got to peek in.

 

Sunday, December 1, 2013

Weekend Update - Where Are My Forest Creatures?

So, the weekend before Thanksgiving, we just cleaned.  We found a home for everything and cleaned up almost everything.  A bug hit our home so Little Miss and Husband weren't feeling well, but we made do.  Little Miss went to the In-Laws' apartment for some cookie decorating and a sleepover.  She wasn't feeling well in the morning, but she perked up by the afternoon.  We spent the entire weekend cleaning - tidying mostly.

Also, there was a lot of sleep.  It would be much easier if woodland creatures did my cleaning.

We hosted my parents for Thanksgiving.  I had a half day of work on Wednesday and then Thursday and Friday off.  On Monday, I left work early so I was all set to go to Doctor Who airing in 3D IMAX.  I met a friend to see it, and it was worth it.  On Tuesday, I had the morning off to see Little Miss's Thanksgiving show.  The kids were super cute.  The weather was horrendous - cold and rainy.  On Wednesday, I head home after work in the cold and rain to do the last of the cleaning.

On Thursday, Little Miss and I woke up to play some games, and then she helped me make the veggies and cranberry sauce.  Then, we did the last of the cleaning.  Dinner was pretty good with the family and we've been gladly eating leftovers ever since.

Week 17

This week, Baby is the size of an onion and, according to this, gaining weight and getting bigger. I definitely feel the baby getting bigger. I officially hit the point where I didn't just eat a big dinner. I look pregnant (and I also ate a big dinner).

I think I've felt the baby, but I'm always horrible figuring that out. No growing pains this week though I occasionally have trouble catching my breath. It's been a pretty busy week so not much thought to the little guy. He'll get his attention later - or whenever I try to get up off a couch.

Friday, November 22, 2013

Weekend Update - Naps Are Our Friend

Last weekend, nothing much happened despite grand plans to clean the apartment.  On Saturday, Little Miss and I played every board game we own.  I lost almost every single one of them from Guess Who to Old Maid to Candyland to Chutes and Ladders to I Spy.  Then, Little Miss and I had lunch and took a nap.  In the late afternoon, I took a shower and pretty much did nothing until it was time to go to bed.  In my defense, I had a pretty bad headache. 

On Sunday, Little Miss and I met Sister-in-Law and Nephew at the mall for holiday pictures.  It went successfully.  Then, we had lunch and walked around the mall.  To my disappointment, we found nothing that was worth waiting in line for.  Little Miss wanted a pair of fingerless gloves (on sale) but not enough to stand in line.  So, we left.  She napped when we got home for a little while, and I relaxed a bit on the couch watching some tv.  I regretted not taking a nap later though.

That was the entire weekend.  It was pretty low-key though not as low key as this coming up weekend.  It'll sound like absolute excitement compared the coming up weekend. 

Week 16

So, according to this week, the baby is the size of an avocado which has made me want guacamole all week long. The baby is listening to my voice, thanks to tiny bones forming in the ears, growing hair, lashes and eyebrows. And the baby is forming taste buds. That's a pretty big week. Big like my waistline.

I had some growing pains this week which makes sense as the belly seemed to come out of nowhere this week. Also, I went to the doctor for my blood test (to check for genetic anonalies - the last test unless we need further testing) and discovered I gained all the weight I lost in the first trimester. During the last 2 weeks. So, that made the nurse happy. I knew I was up to the challenge. And I surpassed 100 pounds (just barely) which always freaks me out a little. It's just a number, and I'm not seriously freaked out, but it always seems so much bigger than anything slightly smaller.  I go back in 2 weeks and then we get the big 20 week ultrasound.  Exciting times. 

 

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Week 15

You can find additional information here, but "the average fetus at 15 weeks weighs 2.5 ounces and measures 4 inches -- and his proportions are becoming even more normal, since his legs now outmeasure his arms."

My goals this week were to gain weight and hydrate. Last week, the doctor noted that the amniotic fluid looked low, but this could be because I'm the worst at hydration so this week, I got back on the bandwagon. So, if you can't find me, chances are I'm in the restroom. As for the weight, I've lost about 5 pounds since prepregnancy which is a lot for me. Too bad I couldn't do this while not pregnant, but I guess life doesn't work that way. I wasn't even that ill during the first trimester. I attribute this to being asked to go on the gestational diabetes diet early. I may have to take a break and carb up through the holiday. Truthfully, at this point, because the baby is measuring an average size, the weight loss isn't that much of a concern.

I do officially hate all my clothes yet even in my hatred, I understand that maternity clothes are a big waste of money. It's going to cause a problem when I want to wear pants during the winter months and only have 2 pairs though. I'll have to figure something out but I'm not there yet. Thanks to some MacGuyver like moves, my prepregnancy pants still work - they're just working extra hard. As for movement, the internet says around 16 weeks for first-time moms (though I was more like 30 weeks because I was the most unintuitive mom out there) or earlier. I thought I felt some movement this week though.

 

Monday, November 11, 2013

Weekend Update - Where Did It Go?

I suppose, in all honest, many are still on their weekend.  I am working this Veterans' Day though.

I had good intentions (ok, some intention) to clean this past weekend.  We watched a little tv on Friday instead.  Then, we just got busy and lazy.  I should amend that to say I got busy and lazy because Little Miss actually did a fantastic job cleaning her room. 

On Saturday, I met college friends and their children for brunch.  It was great catching up.  I don't think I've seen them in about 10 years.  After, I went home to take a quick nap to try to rid myself of a headache before going to a six-year-old's birthday party.  I think it was kind of pointless, but I can't imagine what the headache would have been like if I hadn't rested first.  So, when I got home, I rested some more to completely rid myself of it.

On Sunday, we got up to get Christmas portraits done with Nephew.  Before we left, Little Miss and I spent time together in the morning where she spent the time reading her school paperwork and asked for an impromtu lesson on the difference between commas and "capostrophes".  So, we had a little schooling.  She then went to finish all her school work she didn't have time to finish throughout the week because she wasn't assigned any weekend homework to do.  Seriously, who does this?

Getting dressed, I noticed that I bought Little Miss's dress a size too small by accident.  After calling the store, I was told that I would have to send it back to get a refund (minus shipping costs), but I decided to take it to the mall just in case.  I was going to be there anyway.  To skip ahead, Gap Kids did give me a refund with no question at all.  So, thumbs up Gap Kids.  Also, thumbs up for having a bathroom in your store.  It was a lifesaver.  Anyway, the portraits came out well, I thought.  After, we did lunch at The Cheesecake Factory which is never a bad idea.  Then, we said farewell to Sister and Nephew while we walked around. 

While at the mall, we saw that the Santa display was up.  I told Little Miss we could walk around, but we weren't doing Santa that day.  Even though she looks like a big girl, she really wanted to see Santa.  The display made it appear like it snowed inside, and she had a blast just walking around.  I promised her we'd see Santa closer to Christmas.

I also promised my free monthly chocolate from Godiva to Little Miss.  She talked me into a chocolate turkey for $6.95.  However, when we checked out, the woman said if I spent $10, I'd get $10 off.  So, we picked up a second chocolate turkey and our entire receipt was $3 and change.  So, I had to buy more to pay less.  Good day indeed.

Last night, Little Miss spent the night at the In-Laws' apartment so I took that opportunity to go to bed early. 

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Halloween

It looks like I forgot Halloween.  Little Miss was a bumblebee.  Nephew was obviously Captain America.  We had our ultrasound so my dad picked up Little Miss from school, and we all met at my parents' house.  After dinner, the kids (and parents) went door-to-door for a little over an hour.  It was a lot of fun despite the little bit of drizzle.  Because of work, this is the first Halloween Husband has participated in since her first two. 

Weekend Update - You Say It's My Birthday


All of last week, I was battling a head cold.  On Friday, I cleaned a little, but it was a busy week, and I was just exhausted.  So, I went to bed.  Saturday was Little Miss's birthday party for which I woke up early.  I cleaned the house and started cooking, but as it always happens, we were running behind.  My parents came early to help and in the nick of time!  We were still maybe a few minutes late, but it wasn't that bad.  I don't think it affected the party at all.  It was chaos, but I think Little Miss had fun.


Father-in-Law made the cake and cupcakes which were the hit of the party.  Everyone had compliments.  Little Miss was showered with gifts.  Her favorites included glitter paint (from Mom), Cinderella Uno Cards (from Brother-in-Law) and some new board games.  She also received a lot of arts and crafts sets which she'll enjoy.  Some of the presents were very nostalgic like Connect Four and Lite Brite.  It makes me feel not as old to see her play with the same toys and games that I enjoyed.

On Saturday night, we had a quiet night.  Little Miss and I played some of her new games before bed.  Then, we all crashed fairly early after scavenging and eating leftovers from the party food.

On Sunday, Little Miss and I woke up early to go to a birthday party.  It was rushed, but she had a good time and had a good nap in the afternoon.  After the rest, we played another new game.  She's becoming quite the winner - and trash talker.  It's kind of hilarious even if I'm trying to make her a good sport at the same time.  We did dinner, bath and bed last night, but it was a rough night.  She was a little clingy and had trouble staying asleep which had to do with the nap and some itchy skin.  She's been a little clingier than usual, but as she put it so succinctly this morning, "I miss you except tomorrow (when she's with her cousin), and then I'll forget about you."  So, it's nice to know where I stand.  Good weekend, but I need a weekend to recover!

Week 14

This week's information can be found here, but baby is the size of a lemon or 3 1/2" inches long which is probably close to accurate. We were a little over 3" long last week during our ultrasound. Based on last week, the little one was busy kicking and moving around. In all the ultrasounds, he's been quite active which exhausts me just thinking about it.
We had our next doctor appointment Friday morning, but I expect hope all will go well. I can't imagine anything popping up since last Thursday's ultrasound. I'm not sure if they'll do the next set of blood tests tomorrow or the next appointment, but this month should be relatively uneventful before the big 20 week scan. Meanwhile, Little Miss really wishes she could hear the heartbeat. She'll be excited once she'll be able to feel him move, I bet. Knowing my intuition, she'll feel him before I do. I didn't recognize movement with Little Miss until practically birth. 

Update:  Blood test in 2 weeks so no needles on Friday.  That was good.  The little bugger was too busy moving to get a heartbeat, but we took a quick super low-res ultrasound of it and saw that everything was ok.  There were some other little items to watch, but all is good.  We go back in 4 weeks and then get our order for the big ultrasound to check progress and confirm gender again.

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Books Read in October 2013


  1. Orange is the New Black by Piper Kerman
  2. Drawn Together by Lauren Dane  (NOTE:  This is part of the Brown Family series. The order of which can be found here.
  3. The Untamed Mackenzie by (NOTE: This is part of the Mackenzie/Highland Pleasures series - the order of which can be found here)
  4. The Wicked Deeds of Daniel Mackenzie by (NOTE: This is part of the Mackenzie/Highland Pleasures series - the order of which can be found here)
Decent month – not too few or too many. Orange is the New Black was for book club, and I found it very interesting. The other three were romance which were fast and enjoyable reads. I do enjoy the Mackenzie series and, despite mixed reviews, I enjoyed it. It was a challenging character, but I love seeing characters redeemed, even the ones you think cannot be redeemed at all.

Movies Watched in October 2013

  1. Captain Phillips
It was another pathetic movie month this month. I did at least make it to the theater for this one. It was a well done movie, and we got to see it in the theater that has recliners which is always a plus. I highly recommend this viewing pleasure. I like having my feet up only, but you can pretty much fully recline. It’s glorious. The movie was pretty good, too.

Random Tidbits

  1. Little Miss threw a tantrum on Tuesday because I wouldn't let her finish all of her homework for the week.  I'm the meanest mom ever.  This was also due in part because she was unhappy with how the finished product kept coming out.  Our solution was that she do Tuesday's homework and the rest on Wednesday.  We worked through the challenge of drawing a perfect dog and drew a snake instead. 
  2. Little Miss loves homework.  It's ridiculous.  She is aware that she's only in kindergarten which is why she enjoys it and that she probably won't in a couple of years.  Still, even on the weekend, she'll take quizzes on the little tablet she got for her birthday last year.  For fun.  Seriously, she takes quizzes for fun. 
  3. I'm at the awkward stage where prepregnancy clothes are too tight (my shirt on Monday was working extra hard), but maternity clothes are too big.  However, I've somewhat passed the point where I just looked like I gained 5 pounds from a big lunch which is good.  I'm lucky in that this is when, belly aside, I'm my leanest.  All my weight goes to the belly and the rest kind of migrates there.  That said, it all shifts back after I stop breastfeeding (unless I do something drastic like exercise).
  4. I had forgotten the growing pains of pregnancy.  I remembered the sickness and the congestion (though glad I never got the bloody noses this time around), but I forgot the growing belly pains.  Ouch. 
  5. I feel bad that our Christmas tree farm is closed, but it used to take us the entire day to drive out there, pick a tree and drive back to set it up.  We found a place that is much closer and still a little privately-owned place.  It should take us maybe an hour to do.  I'm looking forward to relaxing the day after Thanksgiving now.  What we save in gas is used in buying a mini pointsettia for Little Miss though.  They're so cute (as is she), and it's hard to resist when she asks for something so little.  Some days I feel like we just say no to her all the time.  I mean, I packed her snack for school (Wheat Thins), and she thanked me like I'd given her a giant cupcake.  Gratitude is nice, but I don't feel like Wheat Thins are worth a hug and declaration that I'm the best mom ever.  It's nice she thinks so if only for the moment.

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Car Conversations

Last night, Little Miss and I drove out to my parents' house during rush hour traffic.  We got to talking about a great number of things.  At one point, I asked Little Miss if she was going to help her brother with his homework.  Her response was outrage.

"Mommy, I'm not going to remember the things I did as a CHILD!"

And that was the end of that.

Monday, November 4, 2013

Presidents

My mom, and Husband to a certain extent, are history buffs.  Both know all the presidents.  My mom has challenged her grandchildren (this began with my cousins who did not take her up on the challenge) to learn the presidents.  For achieving this goal, there is a great sum of money earned.  Nephew did this last year at the age of 7.  We may be able to do that as well if not surpass that age. 

Little Miss has learned the first ten presidents, first and last names.  I told her she only needed to learn the last names, but she would have none of that.  I'm also hoping my mom doesn't take points away for mispronunciation because Martin Van Buren is a little tricky for her.  Her extra points for learning first and last names should carry her.

Regardless, her favorite (so far) is John Tyler. In the book that we have, John Tyler is surrounded by marbles. I ran across this today. I don't have the heart to tell her it's a myth. She'll have to find a new favorite president.  Maybe she'll like Teddy Roosevelt.  His page has a teddy bear.

I'm editing this to mention that many websites still say that John Tyler was playing marbles when notified he was now President.  I'll let Little Miss believe it for now, and she can make up her own mind.  It's not like there's a reliable source to confirm anymore.

Friday, November 1, 2013

How to Crush Dreams (In One Easy Step)

Two weeks ago, during our ultrasound, the doctor was alarmed because there seemed to be an anomaly in the development of the bladder.  So, he wanted to see us again in two weeks.  Yesterday, we went in for our third ultrasound in a very short time.  It's amazing how much the baby has grown and developed though. 

It looks like all the organs are where they are supposed to be, and the baby is measuring where a 13 week baby should.  We saw and measured the heartbeat and saw organs, blood flow, and spine along with both hands/arms and feet/legs.  Lots of kicking so I feel like I'm in trouble down the road. 

The technician asked if we wanted to see the gender.  We didn't think you could tell at 13 weeks, but you clearly could.  We're having a boy.  Our first thought went to Little Miss who had her heart set on a sister.  More in a minute.  So, the doctor said everything looked on schedule, but they still want to keep an eye on me, but I think we should be able to hold off until the halfway ultrasound unless something pops up between then.  Regrets, we never asked for pictures of the sonogram, but we were there so you'll have to trust us.  The 3-D ultrasounds creep me out and, at this stage, skew the images anyway.  Still, it was unique to see.

My dad picked up Little Miss from school so she could get ready for trick or treating, and we met them out at my parents' place after the doctor.  We took her aside by herself and broke the news.  There was a mini temper trantrum before she left the room without speaking to us.  We then told my parents who kind of figured it out after Little Miss's reaction.  Nephew was very excited though.  Husband called his parents and brother. 

By the end of the evening, Little Miss had accepted the situation.  By this morning, I'd say she is pleased but maybe not excited.  She is holding all her hope on getting a girl cousin, but I think she'll later appreciate being the only girl in the immediate family.  She did approve the name so that helped smooth things over.  Nephew has requested we name the baby Robert Griffin III after the Redskins quarterback.  We are not.

If you're going to deliver unexpected news to a child, you should always do it a half hour before she goes door-to-door begging for candy.  It helps ease the pain.

Week 13

You can read more, here, but it says the baby is about the size of a peach (though another website said peapod), just shy of 3" long. My stomach has a tiny bump. I'm in the in between clothes where I'm good if it's elastic, but nothing fits properly. I just hate everything, and everything hates me. Fatigue is going away though it's hard to tell with me. I'm always tired. 

We've only just entered the second trimester depending on what measurement you're using, but it's going to go by like a blur as this time of year always does.  By the time the dust settles, we'll be close to the third trimester in February which is kind of terrifying. I know everything will fall into place, but it just seems like we're all like "we've done this before" and "we have plenty of stuff saved from the first time", but the things we're not thinking of will get us, I'm sure. Still, those worries are for another time and place. Not today. *g*

Thursday, October 31, 2013

Weekend Update - Crankypants

On Friday, we had a quiet night in.  Well, quiet after Little Miss got booted to bed.  She had been very tired all week, and the week culminated in a giant meltdown. 

On Saturday, she asked Husband to get up with her and proceeded to talk to him for 2 hours straight.  I slept in a little and then got up to meet a friend at the movies.  Because she was running late, I also had time to vote early for the election this year.  That was pretty awesome to get that out of the way with no line. 
After, Husband, Little Miss and I went to my sister's place.  Little Miss and Nephew had a blast together.  He got a new loft-style bed and was eager to show that off.  Little Miss loved it (briefly until she was stuck at the top and was a little too scared to come down and needed her daddy).  My parents and my sister's boyfriend arrived later.  We had some Chinese delivery and chatted.  Little Miss opened a birthday present from my parents and played some video games.  We left very late, but it was a good night.
On Sunday, I expected a meltdown.  Little Miss went to bed very late the night before and didn't really sleep in, but I promised her she could come out with me.  So, we went to an early lunch for book club.  It was dim sum and Little Miss doesn't eat Chinese food so she patiently sat there while we ate.  Then, we went to Target so she could spend her $10, and we could pick up various other items.  After, it was late, and Little Miss really wanted breakfast for lunch so we hit IHOP.  She was the most excellent girl all day.  When we got home, it was probably around 3:30.  We made 2 batches of cookie dough and then I carved Snow White and her apple out of a pumpkin and made dinner.  I did bath time and then Husband helped with the bedtime routine before I rolled and baked way too many cookies.  They were pretty darned photogenic though - and tasty.  Surprisingly, Little Miss was fantastic on Sunday with little sleep.  I, on the other hand, missed my weekend naps.  A lot.  In my defense, my crankypants are super comfortable.
 

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Weekend Update - A Little Bit of Everything

Last weekend, we started the weekend on Friday with dinner with the In-laws, Brother-in-Law, Sister-in-Law and Nephew.  It was a yummy dinner.  Then, we went back to the In-laws apartment for some dessert.  We were all super tired, and Little Miss fell asleep on the way home.  The sad thing is that it wasn't that late.

On Saturday, I had lunch plans with the girls while Husband took Little Miss to a birthday party.  The weather was very overcast, but the kids didn't mind. They were hopped up on candy and running around.  I met them there when I was done with lunch.  It was a quiet evening followed by an even quieter Sunday.  

On Sunday, I slept gloriously late and was only awakened when pancakes were ready.  After pancakes, I sat on the couch for what seemed like forever.  After most of the day, I showered, and Little Miss and I went grocery shopping.  That pretty much summed up my Sunday as we moved to start a new week.

Monday, October 28, 2013

Happy Birthday, Little Miss!

Big birthday wishes to our Big Girl!

We have a 6 year old. That blows my mind. The recent fact that when the next one is 6, this one will be in her last year before becoming a teenager blew my mind so much last week that I refuse to think about it. Regardless, the big party is this weekend, but Little Miss squeezed into her birthday shirt today. She probably won't let me put her in birthday shirts next year. She brought in birthday sugar cookies to school. She requested Elmo, Cookie Monster and Oscar cookies which even I thought was a little juvenile, but it's what she wanted. I even let her have one for breakfast because, hey, it's her birthday. I also bought her a big cupcake so we can sing later tonight. Traditionally, she gets cake and the whole nine yards for her birthday party, but ever since her first birthday, she's gotten a cupcake on her actual birthday.

More on the weekend later, but she got $10 from the Inlaws, and I let her spend it at Target. One of the many items she bought was a party hat. She's very excited to wear it tonight. I drew the line at wearing it to school. Husband is also leaving work to start on her favorite dinner tonight - a lemon chicken over pasta or, as she calls it - chicken, pasta and lemony sauce.

Sunday, October 27, 2013

Weekend Update - Long Weekend



Last Thursday was our 14th anniversary.  To celebrate, we both forgot.  I actually texted mid-morning.  That night, I went to bowling and then the next day, Little Miss and I went out of town for the long weekend.  I suppose my anniversary present to Husband was that he didn't spend a long weekend with my family. 

On Friday, I hit massive traffic going to my parents' house so Little Miss and I could join them and my Sister, her boyfriend and Nephew on a trip to their vacation house in western Maryland.  We got up there late on Friday after stopping for a quick bite along the way.
On Saturday, the kids woke up early and entertained themselves.  After we all woke up, we had breakfast and then went to a friend of my parents for the day.  We watched the big Autumn Glory parade and ate a lot of food (well, I did, I can't speak for everybody).    We pretty much did nothing when we got home, but I went to bed early.
On Sunday, the kids woke up early again.  We got ready to go to the top of the mountain and have a pumpkin race.  We did not win.  Little Miss and Nephew had fun running around and eating junk food.  It was a little on the chilly side, but we all had fun.  After, I napped a bit while we all took it easy after a quick trip to Wal-Mart.  That night, the kids slept together in the loft for the first time.  It was a success overall, I believe.  They really got along overall really well.
 
On Monday, we went to the mountain and the kids rode the mountain coaster numerous times.  It's Little Miss's favorite part of the weekend.  They also played on the playground before we packed up to go home.  The trip home took awhile between bathroom breaks and food, but it was a good weekend.  The cousins are already missing each other hard, any bickering a thing of the past.  I'm going to need time to recover, but I hit the ground running instead.


Friday, October 25, 2013

PITA

I'm just going to call this Little One PITA because he or she is a giant Pain In The Ass already.  Because of my "advanced maternal age" (read:  I'm old), we had to do some genetic screening as statistically I'm more at risk for a bunch of chromosomal abnormalities.  So, we had the Nuchal Translucency ultrasound and blood test.  The good news is that it came back normal or within normal range.  There will be another round of testing later.

Still, every single time we tried to get the reading of the baby, the little PITA would just turn right around and show us his or her backside.  No matter where we put the camera!  Hopefully, he or she will be more accommodating when we look for gender or after he or she is born, but I'm sure this is a sign of things to come.  Send help.

Weekend Update - This is Fall?

The first weekend in October was a lot of fun.  We had dinner with the In-laws at Brother-in-Law and Sister-in-Law's apartment.
On Saturday, we met Brother-in-Law, Sister-in-Law and Nephew at the pumpkin patch.  It was about the same temperature as the sun so we didn't stay long, but Little Miss slid down the slides, jumped on the bounce house, played on the playground and did the corn maze (the last with some supervision).  Then, we went to lunch at Matchbox to try to cool off.  Little Miss had a surprise sleepover with Brother-in-Law and Sister-in-Law while I met friends at Rasika West End for some really delicious Indian food.  I got home very late and it was nice to know I could sleep in.

On Sunday, I picked up Little Miss, and the two of us took a lengthy nap instead of clean the apartment.  Good Sunday indeed.

Week 12

So, I'll move to come (maybe tonight), but here is the update of approximately where the baby is this week or you can click here for more.
 
"Things are changing fast. You’re reaching the home stretch of the first trimester (we know, finally!) at 12 weeks which means your hormones are likely to tone things down a bit -- which might make you feel a little less emotional! And it will probably help the symptoms subside a bit, too. One warning though: your morning sickness and fatigue might get replaced by headaches and dizziness. But we think that’s a reasonable trade-off. The other big change? Baby’s almost done developing her body’s important systems and parts, which means, it’s mostly about getting bigger and more mature from here on out. Around week 12, you might want to know more about baby, so you’re probably having genetic testing done to determine her risk of birth defects or other problems. This can be a little scary -- and confusing -- so be sure to ask your OB plenty of questions, and know that it’s much more likely baby’s A-OK than anything else." - from the link above on TheBump.com.
 
More on genetic testing in a later post.

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Big Sister, Big News


When we were in Wildwood, we confirmed that we were expecting another baby. It was in our overall plan to have a second. I wanted to have a second before I turned 40 and if it didn't happen, we were pretty content with one. I don't know if I would have chosen this exact moment, but I'm getting used to the idea. Regardless, Little Miss is thrilled. I think she's a little unhappy with the fact that I can't carry her or rough house as much, but she is excited about the prospect of having a sister and is not 100% against the idea of a brother though the excitement level is much, much lower over that possibility. We told her early on before our families, and she was a pretty fantastic secret keeper.

I've felt ok, mostly blah.  I haven't felt poorly, just not that great.  The fatigue is fun and even more fun with a 6-year-old, but she's been great and so understanding.  It makes me glad I waited, and I know she'll be a big help even if she has moments of impatience or jealousy.  I'm starting to feel a little better so hopefully I can usher in the second trimester with a little less fatigue and crankiness.

So, in the almost 2 months since we found out about the news, we've seen the doctor many times. I spotted early on which led to an emergency doctor's visit at which point the doctor viewed nothing on the ultrasound which did freak me out a little bit. We went in for a proper ultrasound the following week which yielded a baby and a heartbeat which settled my nerves. Because I had gestational diabetes and was on insulin last time, I also had to take the education class again to monitor my blood throughout this pregnancy versus only in the last 8-10 weeks. This does not make me happy because I really love me carbs. The diet consists of 3 small meals and 3 snacks throughout the day and testing my blood sugar 4 times a day. I just remind myself that it was a great way to maintain a pretty awesome pregnancy weight despite my craving for carbs constantly. As with last time, my resting numbers are high (my morning results are consistently high). Hopefully, I don't end up on insulin again, but it wasn't so bad the last time.

This week is the test to see if we are at risk for any genetic anomalies though it looks like the test could yield a false negative or a false positive. Fantastic. This part is new for us because I'm old (or Advanced Maternal Age).  Anyway, if you're playing the home game, below is the information of the baby this week or you can click here:

Friday, October 11, 2013

Movies Watched in September 2013

  1. Hotel Transylvania
It was kind of pathetic this month. I watched Hotel Transylvania on cable one afternoon. It was cute. I don't see any more movies in my October future, but who knows? I blame the return of Fall television.

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Books Read in September 2013

  1. The Twelve by Justin Cronin (NOTE:  This is part of The Passage trilogy.)
  2. Sometimes a Rogue by Mary Jo Putney  (NOTE:  This is part of The Lost Lords series. The order of which can be found here.
  3. Thankless in Death by Cherise SinclairJ.D. Robb (NOTE:  This is part of the In Death series - the order of which can be found here)
  4. Always on My Mind by Jill Shalvis (NOTE:  This is part of the Lucky Harbor series - the order of which can be found here.)
  5. So Tough to Tame by Victoria Dahl. (NOTE: This book is part of the Jackson series. The order of which can be found here.)
The Twelve is a monster of a book. I didn't think I'd get much more in, but I switched to romance and cranked out a few more. I needed something light to balance out The Twelve and Thankless In Death. Both were pretty bleak. Still, all the books were pretty solid.