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.

  • 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
  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.