Thursday, October 30, 2008

Nineteen Weeks

Your baby's sensory development is exploding! Her brain is designating specialized areas for smell, taste, hearing, vision, and touch. Some research suggests that she may be able to hear your voice now, so don't be shy about reading aloud, talking to her, or singing a happy tune if the mood strikes you. Your baby weighs about 8 1/2 ounces and measures 6 inches, head to bottom — about the size of a large heirloom tomato. Her arms and legs are in the right proportions to each other and the rest of her body now. Her kidneys continue to make urine and the hair on her scalp is sprouting. A waxy protective coating called the vernix caseosa is forming on her skin to prevent it from pickling in the amniotic fluid.See what your baby looks like this week.
I’m feeling great this week! I still get up every morning and say my little prayer to the porcelain god, but then I’m fine. I just puke and get it over with and go on with my day.

I have been feeling the baby move more often. Still not at any specific times of the day and not hard enough to wake me up from a dead sleep. I’ve had a bit more energy, but I still have my days when I’m dead to the world tired.

Another pregnancy necessity I’ve recently found that makes pregnancy so much more comfortable is sleeping with a body pillow. I’ve heard women talk about the wonders of the body pillow and I wasn’t sold until I picked up a body pillow on sale at Target for $10. It helps me sleep so much better! They sell really expensive pregnancy pillows for $70+. They’re a certain shape and have curves. I’m in love with mine from Target! I got a really soft, fuzzy cover and I just snuggle up all night. Ozzie doesn’t like it because it takes up his usual space behind my knees. But he’s adjusting.

Cravings? I get cravings for what ever I see on TV. My mom used to eat Burger King Whoppers like they were goin’ out of style when she was pregnant with me. A Whopper sounds great right about now. I’ve noticed that I’m enjoying food much more now than I did during the first trimester. Eating used to be a chore, now I enjoy it again! I guess if there’s one time in your whole life you can really give into cravings it’s now. But remember, everything in moderation. I’m just waiting for the holiday season with all those extra treats! No eggnog for me, but pass me another cookie please!

We are registering this Saturday. It’s a busy day and we’re trying to fit it in after my nephew Zach’s fourth birthday party. I’m sure I’ll be exhausted, and hungry and most likely cranky, so we’ll have to take it slow and I’ll probably do some more registering online. Right now we’re going to register at Baby’s R Us and possibly Target.

The Watson/Daniels, Mazzarella and Frizell parents will giving us a joint gift of the nursery furniture. This is a huge gift and we couldn’t be more grateful! Thank you all for sincere generosity and continued support. Now we just have to choose! We’ll post pics as soon as we make the final decision.

I’ve been asking around about must have items and items that aren’t worth a penny and I’ve already been warned about the wipes warmer and how useless it is. I think I’ve decided being first time parents, sometimes having a lot of stuff helps build confidence and we’ll learn our own lessons on what we need and what’s frivolous. Also the baby will eventually decide what he needs/likes.

That’s the news for now. Looking forward to another week of feeling better and next week I’ll be half way done with the pregnancy! I can’t believe it, it’s gone by so fast.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

My Husband, the Big Softy

This little story should give you a glimpse into my dear husband’s heart. He’s a very carrying man, very sweet natured. And the fact that he’s a former fireman and current police officer shouldn’t shock anyone. He’s always willing to help at a moments notice and gets turned on by the sound of sirens.

Lately I’ve noticed that his usual hair cut has been, well, awful! Frank’s hair cut isn’t that complicated. It’s just a number one clippers around the side and I think a number two up top. Easy, right? It’s either lopsided, or has a few stray hairs around the ear. One time he came home with bangs!

Frank finally explained to me the man who cuts his hair has a bit of a shaky hand and doesn’t always do a good job. I asked him why he doesn’t go to some one else? We have a swanky new men’s salon that opened up down the street with huge flat screen TV’s with sports on 24/7 – a real men’s den so to speak.

Frank says that he feels bad for the old man, that he doesn’t have that many customers. So he continues to go. He often “fixes” his hair cuts when he gets home. There’s a lot you can do with spray gel.

I just look at him and his horrible hair cut and smile.

I am one lucky wife.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Emotional? Nah… just hand me the tissues!

Ok. I admit it. I have been very emotional lately. This new pregnancy symptom has kind of caught me off guard. I was never a crier. Even at the saddest of movies, I usually kept it together.

But lately – forget it! If there is a hint of an animal dying or even a come from behind football team, I’m a goner. I found myself crying with every extra point the team scored in We Are Marshall. Let’s not forget that the entire football team dies in the first ten minutes! Don’t worry, I didn’t give away the movie – that’s the whole premise. It really is a great movie. I thought I’d push my pregnancy hormones to their limit by watching My Dog Skip. Word of warning – DO NOT WATCH THIS MOVIE if you are pregnant! It’s about a boy and his dog. I’m getting teary just thinking about it.

This one caught be my surprise. I was actually perusing YouTube during my lunch break at work and found this…

It’s about a little girl named Abby and her best friend Rosco the pug. It’s a slide show of photos and video of the two growing up together all set to Some Where Over the Rainbow. Let me tell you – it took about two seconds for me to reach for the tissues.

Then there’s the complete opposite of crying is the hysterical laughter. It’s something I cannot control and it’s completely spontaneous. It really doesn’t matter what’s funny – I just start laughing hysterically at something I normally would just chuckle at. Frank’s really good about getting me to of tears because I’m laughing to hard. I think he really enjoys seeing me laugh so hard, that I grab my…well…you know… and run for the bathroom. Another joy of pregnancy!
It’s from one extreme to another and I kind of feel like I don’t have any control. That’s really hard for this self described control freak. I heard that you don’t get your normal emotions back until several months after the baby’s born. Hey, I’m ready for the roller costar ride if you are!

I’d love to hear your war stories of pregnancy – please feel free to leave a comment and let me know I’m not alone!

PS – Frank said I actually looked pregnant this morning. It was really cute and he said it with such excitement. I’ll post some pictures this week.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Eighteen Weeks

Head to rump, your baby is about 5 1/2 inches long (about the length of a bell pepper) and he weighs almost 7 ounces. He's busy flexing his arms and legs — movements that you'll start noticing more and more in the weeks ahead. His blood vessels are visible through his thin skin, and his ears are now in their final position, although they're still standing out from his head a bit. A protective covering of myelin is beginning to form around his nerves, a process that will continue for a year after he's born. If you're having a girl, her uterus and fallopian tubes are formed and in place. If you're having a boy, his genitals are noticeable now, but he may hide them from you during an ultrasound.See what your baby looks like this week.
Welcome to month five! I’m officially five months pregnant. The pregnancy calendar doesn’t work like a typical calendar – I can’t even explain it, but at week 18 I’m in my fifth month.

Frank and I are still settling in that we are having a little Oscar as Nana Susan likes to say. Boys are fun, boys are energetic, boys break things… but all in all, we are ecstatic! Sharing the news at work was fun. Right when I announced we were expecting a little boy, all my friends immediately told me why boys were so much better than girls:

“Boys love their mommies” “Boys are so much easier to raise.”

And of course the negatives with raising girls:

“Girls are so much more emotional, once they hit 11/12, watch out!” “You don’t have enough closet space for a girl”

I’m sure if we said we were having a girl – the complete opposite would have happened. They would have shared all the great things about raising girls. It’s just fun to see people’s reactions.

I am feeling much better. I still puke almost every morning, but I just do it and get it out of the way. I have more energy and now realize how awful I felt before, knowing how good I feel now! I will definitely put this new found energy to good use. We have lots to do – get the nursery ready, clean out the garage (just something that has to get done!) and pick out furniture.

My appetite has returned and I find myself drawn into almost every commercial on TV for the newest food or snack. I haven’t had Frank on any craving runs yet, but I have a feeling it’s coming.

We made the appointment for the second level ultrasound to check out the baby’s heart. It’s scheduled for November 10. We aren’t worried about finding anything wrong, but of course we’ll be relieved when we get a clean bill of health. We’re just glad we get to see our little guy again!

Full speed ahead! Lots to do and feeling great!

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Paint the room blue – we’re having a boy!

We found out on Friday that we’re expecting a little boy on March 26, 2009.

I was so worked up about my swollen feet that I had the nurses where I work take my blood pressure. It came out 145/64 - which is high for me. So I called the doc and he wanted to see me on Friday instead of Monday. Lucky us, we got to find out the gender three days early. Long story short - my bp is fine. Lesson learned - not all cuff sizes fit all!

We're so excited! With the last minute rescheduling, Frank almost missed the ultrasound because he couldn't get out of work early. When I arrived for my 8:30 a.m. apt, I begged the receptionist for a later appointment and she didn’t have anything - I burst into tears! I felt so bad for that woman to have to deal with me all emotional. I'm not a crier at all! I’ve been very emotional and moody lately.

Frank did make it - he raced up the parkway and made it there just in time to see me getting off the table. The tech was so nice; she put me back on the table and showed us everything. He sucked his thumb, gave us a wave, was flipping and kicking throughout the test. We could definitely see his little pee pee :) It definitely looks like a boy!

The ultrasounds to the right are as follows – I’ve become an expert at deciphering the fuzzy black and white images… 1. Is the money shot with his legs and in between his legs you can tell he’s a boy! Look for the white arrow. 2. His spine and skull. 3. His face and he’s giving us a wave. You should be able to click on the photo view a larger version.
The baby has a healthy heart rate of 140 bpm, my blood preasure is a respectable 120/70 and I've gained a total of 8 pounds from day one. Not bad!

The swelling hasn't returned, I think a lot of it has to do with me sitting at my computer all day. My ankles were back to normal all weekend and yesterday. I'll make sure I drink more today and take frequent breaks during the week.

The ultrasound tech did find a marker for downs syndrome in the baby's heart. We're not too concerned, and neither is the doc, because we had the first trimester screening and we have a greater than 1 in 10,000 chance of having a downs baby. And the tech said that she couldn't get a clear picture of the heart, so we get to go to a specialist in a few weeks. I think if there was some chance, I would definitely be worried, but I'm not. Mother's intuition, maybe.

Feeling better most of the time. Have some pretty bad head aches and I toss my cookies about 3 times a week and that usually happens if I get up really early. Like today, but after that, I'm feeling good.

We’re still letting the baby boy Mazzarella sink in for a while. It’s nice calling it a he rather than an it. We are keeping the name a secret until he arrives. There’s got to be some sort of surprise on b-day!

Thanks to everyone for being so supportive and sharing in our excitement.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Seventeen Weeks

Your baby's skeleton is changing from soft cartilage to bone, and the umbilical cord — her lifeline to the placenta — is growing stronger and thicker. Your baby weighs 5 ounces now (about as much as a turnip), and she's around 5 inches long from head to bottom. She can move her joints, and her sweat glands are starting to develop.See what your baby looks like this week.
Who stole my ankles?

My one crowning glory, my one delicate and thin body feature – gone to the water retention pregnancy gods.

When I got home yesterday after a normal day at work, I looked down at my little tootsies only to see two swollen stumps where my delicate ankle bones used to protrude. I thought to myself, “Isn’t this a little early for swollen feet? Doesn’t this usually happen in the eighth or ninth month?”

So I got out my trusty Pregnancy Week by Week and found that swelling is completely normal because of all the extra fluids moving around in your body. I cross referenced this advice with What to Except When You’re Expecting and it said the same thing – just be sure my blood pressure stays low and I’m not spilling protein into my urine. Well, I can’t find out either until I see the doc on Monday. The books suggested that I drink plenty of fluids and that I keep moving or do not stand or sit for too long and wear comfortable shoes. I’m on the comfy shoe wagon, I just need to remind myself to take frequent breaks and walk away from the computer after a few hours. One benefit of working in a children’s hospital is that I can take a break and always find someone to play Uno with or go for a stroll in our new therapy garden. Propping my legs up on top of my computer monitor (which is a huge no no according to our IT dept) may be too high, I need something in between. I’ll bring in a little stool for under my desk – just another thing we have to purchase!

After the purchase of the car, I was full steam ahead on to the next big purchases and I think Frank was getting a little overwhelmed by all this talk of buying this or needing that. He sweetly asked me not to talk about any big purchases for a week. I like how he put a time limit to it, but honey, seven days and counting and we’re off to look at baby furniture.

I’ve been feeling the baby move more. Still not at any special times of the day, just when she/he feels the need to flutter. I have noticed it’s moves often after I have something sweet or after I eat. It still feels like a flutter, or a pop here or there.

We have our next doc apt on Monday. I’ll definitely ask him about the new swelling, about some stretching pain I’ve been having – both of which I’m sure are normal. And of course we have our BIG ultrasound!

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Check Out Our New Ride - The SantaFe!

I just had my first cup of caffeinated coffee in five months and the baby is doing flips! I think he/she likes caffeine as much as I do! A word to the pregnancy police - It’s safe to have up to 300 mg of caffeine a day and today I really needed a boost after staying out way past my bed time last night car shopping.

We finally closed the deal and Frank and I are the new proud owners of a cherry red 2008 Hyundai SantaFe! We came up with a nice compromise – I wanted all the bells and whistles, but couldn’t afford the bells and whistles with “top of the line” brands… so we compromised with a Hyundai. And I’m not so sure we even made a compromise because Hyundai has been top rated for safety and performance for many years and is affordable!

You should have seen us – bargaining with the sales man. I thought we made out pretty well. The sales man even started to get loud with us and we eventually settled on a nice price with a free LoJack thrown in.

Feeling a little more prepared for this baby.
- Family car...check!

Next on the list:
- Baby furnature
- Paint Colors
- Registries

The picture is from a Hyundai website – I’ll upload pics of me and the actual car. Promise!

Just a reminder we go in for our next doc apt on Monday! And we get to have our gender ultrasound! Do a little dance or say a prayer that the little one cooperates :) We'll of course post our news as soon as we find out.

Friday, October 10, 2008

Sixteen Weeks

Get ready for a growth spurt. In the next few weeks, your baby will double his weight and add inches to his length. Right now, he's about the size of an avocado: 4 1/2 inches long (head to rump) and 3 1/2 ounces. His legs are much more developed, his head is more erect than it has been, and his eyes have moved closer to the front of his head. His ears are close to their final position, too. The patterning of his scalp has begun, though his locks aren't recognizable yet. He's even started growing toenails. And there's a lot happening inside as well. For example, his heart is now pumping about 25 quarts of blood each day, and this amount will continue to increase as your baby continues to develop.See what your baby looks like this week.
At times I feel better, more energized, less nauseous.

But then it hits me – I can hardly find the energy to get off the couch – or a wave of nausea comes over me that I have to start my “do everything in my power not to throw up routine” which consists of swallowing the excessive amount of saliva brought on by the nausea, then clenching my teeth, taking several deep breaths then pray that everything stays down…

Tonight we’re celebrating three birthdays – Frank my darling husband, my father-in-law Frank and my sister-in-law’s boy friend Fred. All of these birthdays are within a week of each other.

Then next week I have my mom, dad, step-mom Susan and Ozzie. October is a huge birthday month!

Lots of cake for the baby!

Friday, October 3, 2008

Fifteen Weeks

Your growing baby now measures about 4 inches long, crown to rump, and weighs in at about 2 1/2 ounces (about the size of an apple). She's busy moving amniotic fluid through her nose and upper respiratory tract, which helps the primitive air sacs in her lungs begin to develop. Her legs are growing longer than her arms now, and she can move all of her joints and limbs. Although her eyelids are still fused shut, she can sense light. If you shine a flashlight at your tummy, for instance, she's likely to move away from the beam. There's not much for your baby to taste at this point, but she is forming taste buds. Finally, if you have an ultrasound this week, you may be able to find out whether your baby's a boy or a girl! (Don't be too disappointed if it remains a mystery, though. Nailing down your baby's sex depends on the clarity of the picture and on your baby's position. He or she may be modestly curled up or turned in such a way as to "hide the goods.")See what your baby looks like this week.

Over all I am feeling better. Today the nausea and fatigue have crept back and I’ve been getting the occasional heading. But I’m definitely on the transition to the feeling good second trimester.

I’m pretty sure that I’ve felt the baby move. I know it’s early, especially for us curvy girls, to feel the baby, but I swear I know the difference between digestion and a little one moving around inside me. I feel “flutters” every so often. Not all the time, and not at certain times. The technical word for this is called quickening: meaning quite literally, “first subtle kicks.” I’ll place my hand on my tummy and I think to myself… holy cow – there’s a real baby in there! I’m sure I’ll feel real kicks when I get closer to my 20th week.

I just scheduled our 18th week gender ultrasound and doctor’s apt for October 20. That way we’ll see the doc, Dr. Crane this time, and do the ultrasound the same day. Two appointments at once instead of two in two weeks which saves on time away from work! I will be seeing Dr. Crane, he’s the practice’s male doctor and I’ve never seen a male OB/GYN. Granted, he could quite possibly deliver this baby and this appointment he’s not getting up close and personal. But I was still concerned and I mentioned my hesitation to the nurse who I made the appointment with. I said, “I’ve never had a man down there before.” And she pauses, and she simply states, “Well, you got pregnant didn’t you?” And I just cracked up laughing! Sorry if that was too much information, but I literally laughed for a good 60 seconds.