Monday, October 18, 2010

39 weeks

Here is what is going on with Noah this week according to;

Your baby's waiting to greet the world! He continues to build a layer of fat to help control his body temperature after birth, but it's likely he already measures about 20 inches and weighs a bit over 7 pounds, a mini watermelon. (Boys tend to be slightly heavier than girls.) The outer layers of his skin are sloughing off as new skin forms underneath. At each of your now-weekly visits, your caregiver will do an abdominal exam to check your baby's growth and position. She might also do an internal exam to see whether your cervix has started ripening: softening, effacing (thinning out), and dilating (opening). But even armed with this information, there's still no way for your caregiver to predict exactly when your baby is coming. If you go past your due date, your caregiver will schedule you for fetal testing (usually a sonogram) after 40 weeks to ensure that it's safe to continue the pregnancy. If you don't go into labor on your own, most practitioners will induce labor when you're between one and two weeks overdue — or sooner if there's an indication that the risk of waiting is greater than the risks of delivering your baby without further delay. While you're waiting, it's important to continue to pay attention to your baby's movements and let your caregiver know right away if they seem to decrease. Your baby should remain active right up to delivery, and a noticeable slowdown in activity could be a sign of a problem. Also call if you think your water may have broken. Membranes rupture before the beginning of labor in about 8 percent of term pregnancies. Sometimes there's a big gush of fluid, but sometimes there's only a small gush or a slow leak. (Don't try to make the diagnosis yourself. Call even if you only suspect you have a leak.) If you rupture your membranes and don't start contractions on your own, you'll be induced.

As for me, I'm feeling okay, but about done with all of this pregnancy stuff.  I'm not completely miserable, but I get more and more uncomfortable each day.  I'm still really fortunate though, and have only a tiny bit of swelling in my feet every few days.  I have a little back and hip pain, mostly in the evenings, but nothing unbearable.  I'm still sleeping through the night most nights, just with frequent (hourly) trips to the restroom.  Stretch marks are starting to form right around my belly button and I want to get this baby out of me before they spread all over my stomach.  I've been walking for an hour everyday, but still don't have any signs that Noah will be making an appearance soon.  I haven't had a single contraction in over two weeks.  If I haven't gone into labor naturally before then, my doctor will be inducing me Wednesday Oct. 27, but I'm still praying that things progress naturally on their own.

As of now I'm a stay-at-home wife and mom, just without the kid.  It's been nice to sleep in a little, relax, and have some time to finish up last minute things that I wanted to do before Noah's arrival.  All this waiting and unknown is starting to get old though, and I'm just excited to welcome him into our family and begin this new season of life.


Saturday, October 16, 2010

elephant softie

I used this tutorial and template to whip up a quick elephant softie for Noah out of an old pair of sweatpants.  I added buttons on each side for the eye, because I'm not that great with embroidery.  The tag on top can be used with a link to hang this elephant from a stroller or car seat.  He is very imperfect, and very homemade looking, but that's part of the fun of this little guy.


Monday, October 11, 2010

38 weeks

Here is what is going on with Noah this week according to,

Your baby has really plumped up. She weighs about 6.8 pounds and she's over 19 1/2 inches long (like a leek). She has a firm grasp, which you'll soon be able to test when you hold her hand for the first time! Her organs have matured and are ready for life outside the womb. Wondering what color your baby's eyes will be? You may not be able to tell right away. If she's born with brown eyes, they'll likely stay brown. If she's born with steel gray or dark blue eyes, they may stay gray or blue or turn green, hazel, or brown by the time she's 9 months old. That's because a child's irises (the colored part of the eye) may gain more pigment in the months after she's born, but they usually won't get "lighter" or more blue. (Green, hazel, and brown eyes have more pigment than gray or blue eyes.) For many women, the next couple of weeks are a waiting game. Use this time to prepare your baby's nursery or to take care of necessary tasks you may not get around to for a while after your baby's born. Take naps, catch up on your reading, and spend uninterrupted time with your partner while you can. Some swelling in your feet and ankles is normal during these last weeks, but call your practitioner without delay if you notice excessive or sudden swelling of your feet or ankles, more than slight swelling of your hands, any swelling in your face or puffiness around your eyes, or have a sudden weight gain. Also let her know immediately if have severe or persistent headaches; visual changes (such as double or blurred vision, seeing spots or flashing lights, light sensitivity, or a temporary loss of vision), intense upper abdominal pain or tenderness, or nausea and vomiting. These are symptoms of a serious condition called preeclampsia.

As for me, I'm still feeling good, but about done with this being pregnant stage.  I'm not having any problems, or super uncomfortable, it's just that I thought that Noah would already be here by now, and this constant waiting and wondering when my water is going to break (and praying that it doesn't happen in public) is getting old.  As of my doctor's appointment last week I wasn't dilating yet, but some signs were appearing that things are starting to progress.  I've been doing the eliptical machine and walking a lot in hopes to help speed things along.  As of today my belly is starting to look lower, as if it is dropping some (at least in the opinion of me and my co-workers).  I've had random contractions here and there (usually directly after a trip to the gym), but nothing that has become regular, or intense.  My doctor informed me that she won't let me go longer than 41 weeks, and that we needed to pick a date as early as 39 weeks, and as late as 41 weeks by which if I haven't gone into labor naturally yet, I will be induced.  We chose Monday, October 25 (the day after my actual due date).  So if no later than that, Noah will be arriving two weeks from today.  It's nice to now have a date by which I know all of this will come to an end, but a whole new journey will be beginning.  I've been having a little swelling in my feet off and on for the last few days, and have been joking that my toes look like sausages and my ankle bones disappear into the puffiness that has become of my ankles.  In the scheme of things though this has been a very easy pregnancy for me, and a little swelling at this point is to be expected.  We are still unsure of which hospital we will be delivering at... it has been quite a roller coaster with my insurance company this week.  As of now it's looking like I will not be delivering at the one that we were planning on (and toured) and that I will need to go register at an alternate hospital within the next few days.

My last day of work is this Friday, and then I might just walk all day every day until it makes Noah come out.  Everything is pretty much settled and done for Noah's arrival.  I gave the house a good cleaning this weekend, hoping it will still be clean when we come home from the hospital.  And so, the waiting continues...


Saturday, October 9, 2010

Marinated Pork Chops

Marinated Pork Chops

Pork chops were on sale for $1.69/ lb at the store this week, so that became our quick and easy pre-church dinner for tonight.  I served them with baked sweet potatoes and some roasted (10 minutes at 425) asparagus that I tossed with garlic, red pepper flakes, and sesame oil to mirror the Oriental flavors in the pork marinade.  This marinade would also be great on chicken or steak, and would be great on anything cooked on the grill.

-6 pork chops
-4 Tbsp ketchup
-2 Tbsp soy sauce
-1 tsp Sriarcha sauce
-4 Tbsp brown sugar
-2 Tbsp rice vinegar
-2 tsp lime juice
-1 Tbsp sesame oil
-1/2 tsp ground ginger
-2 cloves garlic, minced

To make marinade, whisk together all ingredients beside pork chops.  Let pork chops soak in marinade for 2-8 hours.  Bake pork chops at 350 for 45-60 minutes, turning over halfway through cooking.


Monday, October 4, 2010

37 weeks

Here is what is going on with Noah this week according to,

Your baby is now considered "full term," even though your due date is three weeks away. If you go into labor now, his lungs will likely be mature enough to fully adjust to life outside the womb. (Some babies need a bit more time, though. So if you're planning to have a repeat c-section, for example, your practitioner will schedule it for no earlier than 39 weeks unless there's a medical reason to intervene earlier.)  Your baby weighs 6 1/3 pounds and measures a bit over 19 inches, head to heel (like a stalk of Swiss chard). Many babies have a full head of hair at birth, with locks from 1/2 inch to 1 1/2 inches long. But don't be surprised if your baby's hair isn't the same color as yours. Dark-haired couples are sometimes thrown for a loop when their children come out as blonds or redheads, and fair-haired couples have been surprised by Elvis look-alikes. And then, of course, some babies sport only peach fuzz. Braxton Hicks contractions may be coming more frequently now and may last longer and be more uncomfortable. It may be harder than ever to get comfortable enough to sleep well at night. If you can, take it easy through the day — this may be your last chance to do so for quite a while. Keep monitoring your baby's movements, too, and let your caregiver know immediately if you notice a decrease. Though her quarters are getting cozy, she should still be as active as before.

As for me, I'm still feeling good... just HUGE.  I'm not really very uncomfortable, but I feel like I'm ready to have this baby at any time and be done with all this pregnancy stuff.  I'm probably getting up about every hour at night to use the restroom, but other than that I'm sleeping fine, for about 45 minutes of every hour.  I have been a little more tired than normal recently, and managed to squeeze in a nap both Saturday and Sunday afternoons this weekend.  I've had a few contractions here and there, but nothing too frequent or regular.  As of now we're not really sure what hospital I'll be delivering at... as of today the hospital that I registered with is no longer considered "in-network" by my insurance due to a dispute between the two over rates.  Since I'm further along than 24 weeks, I should be able to be grandfathered in, and continue to deliver at the hospital as planned, but I had to submit paperwork asking for approval to do so, and am now at the mercy of BlueCross/ Blueshield and waiting to hear back from them.  Worst case scenario (if I don't hear back from BCBS before I go into labor, or if I get denied approval to deliver as planned) then I will get to keep my doctor (who is covered as in-network) and will have to deliver at a different hospital (that is considered in-network) that she has admitting rights to.  In the scheme of things this change isn't too big of a deal, but I would prefer to deliver at the hospital that I've already toured and am familiar with.


Saturday, October 2, 2010



I used 2 lbs of deer meat that my boss brought me to make this chili to store in the freezer for post-delivery.  Normally I use ground beef, as listed below, but ground turkey would also work well here.  I normally throw a can of corn in my chili also, but today I was in the mood to make it a little more traditionally.  This chili has a  good sweet and spicy flavor, but if you like it even more kicked up add a diced jalapeno when cooking the beef, onion, and pepper.  Serve chili with cornbread, and your favorite toppings (i.e. shredded cheese, chopped green onions, sour cream, hot sauce, and cilantro).

-2 lbs. ground beef
-1 green pepper, diced
-1 yellow onion, diced
-6 cloves garlic, minced
-2 (29 oz) can diced tomatoes
-1 cup beef broth
-1/2 cup brown sugar
-1 Tbsp cayenne pepper
-2 Tbsp Worcestershire sauce
-2 Tbsp chili powder
-2 tsp cumin
-2 tsp salt
-2 tsp oregano
-3 cans any kind of bean (I used dark red and light red kidney beans and black beans here)

Brown beef, onion, and green pepper in large pot.  Once cooked drain off fat, and return beef and veggies to pot.  Add garlic, stirring while cooking for about 1 minute.  Add remaining ingredients.  Simmer at least 20 minutes (and up to several hours) prior to serving.  The flavor will get better the longer it cooks, and will even be better the next day.


Friday, October 1, 2010

baby bump photo shoot

here are a few pics from a photo shoot that a friend did for us about a month ago