36 Weeks Pregnant!

It’s that time again. Time for a lil’ bump update!

I am now 36 weeks pregnant. Next week, at 37 weeks, baby is no longer considered pre-term. It’s amazing to think that he could present himself to the world at any moment. He could on the other hand, choose to wait another 4 weeks. We will see won’t we?!

36 weeks pregnant

At 36 weeks, baby’s average weight is about 6 lbs and length is 20 inches long. Most of his systems are fully developed, and he is continuing to plump up and build up his baby fat. Bring on the baby rolls. There’s nothing better!

Watching how the body changes and grows during pregnancy is one of the weirdest, most miraculous things. To actually think that there is a little human growing inside of me right now is beyond me. I am supporting a life. With every bit of food that goes into my mouth I think of the baby. It’s been strange seeing the changes happening: seeing my bump grow, my legs get thicker, and seeing my weight go up. It’s strange, but it’s lovely. Do I miss my non-maternity clothes? Of course I do, I’m only human, but I know that some day I will be wearing them again. For now, I am trying to embrace the bump.

So how am I feeling, you might be wondering?

Mentally…

It’s hard to focus on anything but the baby at this point. Mentally I feel my brain is a bit scrambled. I am still able to work just fine but notice myself making lots of little mistakes that I’m not used to making. This could be due to some serious lack of sleep also.

Mentally I feel I have prepared myself for birth as much as possible. I am fully aware that labor and delivery in regards to your own “birth preferences” can alter in an instant and that has to absolutely be okay. What is important is that baby and mom are both healthy in the end. I have heard horror stories, I have heard incredible stories also, and I choose to remember the good stories and focus on those rather than letting fear get the best of me.

Physically…

You know what? I really can’t complain a whole lot. I feel very lucky to have felt this good throughout pregnancy. I’m slowing down a little bit but still going pretty strong. I walk nearly every day and continue to do my yoga stretches daily. I am getting stronger Braxton Hicks contractions that feel like menstrual cramps and that sometimes radiate to my back. This is perfectly normal and it’s my body practicing for the real deal. At night I am waking 6-8 times either to go to the bathroom or just to switch sides due to discomfort. So yes, lots of broken-up sleep. Again, my body is preparing me for what’s to come. 🙂

Other pregnancy symptoms I’ve noticed: clumsiness, forgetfulness, increased hunger (and yet some days I feel my appetite is completely normal), some mild swelling, dramatic mood swings, hot flashes, super hot hands, and nesting.

 Eats

What’s been tickling my fancy these days?

  • I am still drinking my chocolate peanut butter smoothie EVERYDAY. I still can’t believe it.
  • I’m still really into burgers but am also branching out a lot!
  • I have been wanting more fresh veggies and salads lately, so that’s good!

veggies and almond butter with craisins

  • My sweet tooth is pretty much insane. Chocolate and ice cream are dear friends of mine right now and I am okay with that.

Pearl Street Brewery Ice Cream

  • I’m eating three meals a day (usually smaller meals) and 2-3 snacks. My favorite bedtime snack is still Greek yogurt with honey.

Greek Yogurt

Let’s see, what else?

We have our last shower on Saturday! After that we will do some shopping and get anything else we feel we will need. Overall though we are feeling very ready.

I’ve left my wedding rings off because they were getting too snug for comfort and I know too many people who have had to have their bands cut off. Yikes.

How about I stop there? I could go on all day about all of the excitement I’m feeling. There is just so much anticipation!

Check in with you all later gators!

Pregnancy Week 30

I can’t believe I am actually saying this…I am now 30 weeks! I thought you all might enjoy a little pregnancy update since it’s been a while.

melanie 30 weeks pregnant

A comparison back at 20 weeks

pregnancy 20 weeks

And I thought I was big at 20 weeks. Ha!

At 30 weeks, baby is about 3 lbs and 16-17 inches long! He’s getting closer and closer to his birth length and then he will continue to plump up day by day! I am definitely noticing more bumpage these days. I can tell this little guy is growing like crazy.

Symptoms

  • Braxton Hicks contractions especially when I’ve been on my feet too long or haven’t had enough water. These are never really painful, just uncomfortable. It feels like your abdomen is tightening and it feels very hard, and sometimes accompanied by mild cramps.
  • Mild back pain (lower and middle): again, if I stand too long or sit too long but it’s the worst at night. I toss and turn about every hour or two at night.
  • Increased bathroom trips, including 3-4 at night
  • Increased exhaustion. They weren’t kidding when they say fatigue usually hits in the first and third trimesters. I am needing to slow down and rest more often now.
  • Restless leg syndrome at night
  • Sore hips at night

Appetite

GREAT! This is nothing new. I eat three small meals a day plus three (or more) snacks. I focus on getting protein 3x a day as well as at least 5 fruits and veggies. Besides that I make sure I eat a fair amount of whole grains, dairy/calcium usually in the form of almond milk, cheese, and Greek yogurt, and healthy fats like avocado, olive oil, nuts, etc. And it’s time to be real, the sweet tooth has gone crazy.

Which leads me to my next topic: cravings.

I honestly didn’t think I had cravings but when I was at Target I really wanted Oreos. I’m talking double-stuffed Oreos. They are one thing that I pass by in the grocery store every week and think “man, I really want those,” but then I never buy. Well I finally gave in last week and bought them.

You know what, they taste delicious. I’m trying to moderate how many I eat daily. I bought them last Monday and I still have some left so this is a good thing, right? Ice cream has consumed on a weekly basis (once a week that is), and I won’t pass up a piece of chocolate if it is offered at work. I’m REALLY trying not to go crazy with the sugar but goodness it is tough right now.

Not cravings necessarily, but foods I’m loving…

pregnancy food collage

  • Chocolate peanut butter smoothies
  • Greek yogurt with honey
  • Muenster cheese
  • Hard-boiled eggs
  • Burgers
  • Cucumber sandwiches with laughing cow cheese spread
  • Sugar snap peas
  • Ice cream
  • Fruit

What I’m loving about pregnancy right now…

Feeling baby move, kick and hiccup! He hiccups every day and it is the sweetest thing.

Other updates

I passed the glucose tolerance test which means I do not have gestational diabetes and my iron level was excellent!

The nursery is coming along! I haven’t decided if I’m going to share it or keep it a private thing. I will tell you that the walls are gray, the furniture is dark espresso brown, the glider is gray, and the decorations are nautical and chevron! The look and feel of the room is very relaxing which is exactly what I was going for. We are still in the process of searching for an area rug, but besides that it is pretty much done besides filling it up with baby stuff from my upcoming showers!

We start our first birthing classes next month. I have been reading books like it’s my job and am feeling very prepared for birth. It will be good to go to the classes too!

We haven’t 100% settled on a name but we are pretty sure we know. It will be a secret from you all until he arrives. 🙂

That is it for now! I will give ya’ll another pregnancy update in a month or so!!

What are some of your favorite foods right now?

Diet Changes During Pregnancy

My appetite currently in pregnancy is great! I’m nearly 28 weeks now. I wake up hungry or famished most mornings, eat breakfast, sometimes eat a snack mid-morning, always eat lunch, a snack in the afternoon usually, dinner, and a snack before bed.

Baby and I get pretty lethargic if we don’t get food when we are hungry, so I try and remember to always pack snacks when I am out and about.

I learned quickly that the snack before bed is a must otherwise I wake up insanely hungry in the middle of the night. My go-to bedtime snack is Greek yogurt with honey. Protein and carbs to tide me over for a while.

My diet has changed a few ways in pregnancy. I am eating more whole grains and not all of them are gluten-free. My body is tolerating the gluten and although I’m not going overboard with it, I am still eating regular bread, cereal, and snacks sometimes.

Also, I never know what I’m going to want to eat which makes planning meals ahead of time nearly a thing of the past. Dinners are usually pretty spontaneous these days. I’m still trying to clean out the freezer too! It’s going well!

Another thing I’m starting to notice, is that I feel much better when I eat smaller meals frequently opposed to large ones less often. This isn’t always completely doable with work, but I do my best.  My stomach is getting smooshed and appreciates smaller quantities at a time.

What I’ve Been Eating…

I think this baby gets some pretty tasty eats. Time to check out what I’ve been eating lately. I’m linking up with Jenn today!

One day I was suffering with terrible allergies and had no inclination to make food but I knew I needed food. I had pulled up pizza delivery on the computer and was all ready to order. Then the light bulb went off and I decided I would make my own mini healthier pizza instead, and that it wouldn’t be that much work either.

I topped a gluten-free brown rice tortilla with leftover meaty spaghetti sauce, mozzarella, onions, and green olives. I baked it for 5-10 minutes or so and then broiled it. As simple as it was, it tasted so good. Sometimes simple is best.

tortilla pizza

I’m STILL drinking this smoothie every.single.morning. Not sick of it yet! This is a record for sure.

 

chocolate peanut butter smoothie

We had a perfect green bell pepper from our garden waiting to be used so I bought some farmer’s market tomatoes (we didn’t have enough ripe tomatoes in our garden yet) so that I could make a batch of fresh salsa.

homemade salsa

And it was delicious.

I can’t get enough of the frozen spinach cooked to steaming hot with a little butter and salt. Popeye would be so proud.

salsa shrimp spinach

I’m really enjoying my egg sandwiches still slathered with yellow mustard some time type of cheese.

egg sandwich

The southwest salad made an appearance this week! It’s as good as I remembered.

southwest salad

Yesterday I made myself a heaping veggie wrap. I packed it with cucumbers, red onion, banana peppers, pickles, Muenster cheese, spinach and arugula, tomatoes, mustard and mayo. This thing was massive, messy, and SO good!

veggie cheese wrap

 

There’s been a fair share of sweets being consumed lately. My go-to has been ice cream and frozen yogurt. Summertime just screams, “eat ice cream!”

 

frozen yogurt

 

There’s been no lack of good food consumed over here per usual. I haven’t been super creative in the kitchen, but find ways to make do. We’ve been going out to eat more often than before pregnancy too. I’m okay with this though since it’s at most once a week.

What are some of your favorite quick summer meals?

Pregnancy: 25 Weeks!

I am….

25 weeks pregnant!

25 weeks pregnant

Baby is about 13 inches long, measured crown to foot and 1.5- 1.75 lbs. Babes is starting to plump up now! Yay!

How am I feeling?

GREAT for the most part! My appetite is steady—baby lets me know when I need to eat. I eat often.

we're hungry

I’ve been having some Braxton hicks contractions. I realized I’m probably not drinking enough water so I increased my water intake and those have calmed down a lot. I have some leg cramping at night and some restless leg syndrome. These symptoms are all extra aggravated by not drinking enough fluids. The pregnancy brain thing…it’s real, and it’s happening. I just laugh about it because there is nothing I can do except make a million lists and notes so I don’t forget things!

if I had a dollar

All in all though, I am one lucky girl to be feeling so well.

Growing body.

You know, I always knew that when you’re pregnant, other body parts grew besides just the tummy region, but man….I didn’t realize just how much! My shorts are all pretty darn tight in the thigh region. My belly is getting bigger by the day and it doesn’t go unnoticed. Clients at work are asking me everyday when I’m due. It’s strange having people look at your face and then look down at your belly, but I know it’s something I need to get used to because it’s not going to change over the next few months. Simple tasks like pedicuring toenails and getting out of bed are starting to become more challenging. The solution to those: go to the salon for pedicures and gracefully roll out of bed. 🙂

What I love.

I love that my body is capable of creating a baby! The human body is incredibly amazing. I love feeling baby move and kick. I love talking to baby and singing to baby. I love knowing that baby is with me when I run errands, go to work, and relax on the couch. I love dreaming of November and holding baby. I love this baby boy so much already.

What’s keeping me busy.

The registry has been keeping me busy, but I think it’s done for the most part. Every once in a while I will add something else in that I think of, but I know I could be done with it right now and be absolutely a-okay.

Planning the nursery has been keeping me busy too. We have a crib and a changing table that were given to us from friends. We just bought a dresser, and I think we have decided on our glider. We started painting and I started some art projects for the walls!

nursery decor

We have been interviewing doulas and decided on our gal after our last meeting last night! This makes me so happy.

Cravings

No real cravings that I can think of, but I am loving all of the fresh fruit and veggies that summer has to offer.

blueberries

Fifteen weeks to go!

Happy Friday to you all! xoxo

My Pregnancy Must-Have Foods

Throughout pregnancy, my appetite has gone in waves of normal to crazy hungry, but most of the time I am pretty darn hungry.

My diet isn’t nearly as perfect as I’d like it to be…my latest craze is Mentos candies. I have a whole stash of them in my car. I’d like to eat more salmon and more salads. I’d like to say I’m not eating any processed sugar or any processed foods in general. I can’t say that though.

BUT, I am doing my best given the circumstances (food aversions, cravings, etc.) to nourish my body and baby with healthy foods, and that is still pretty good if you ask me.

Here are some of my must-have pregnancy foods I have been noshing on for the majority of the pregnancy.

Open face egg sandwich on gluten-free waffles. I fry an egg (making sure the yolk is cooked through), and place it on a gluten-free waffle with pepper jack cheese and mustard. So, so good.

egg sandwich

Greek yogurt sweetened with honey or maple syrup.

yogurt bowl

Burgers, steak….okay, beef.

burger

Pickles: as cliché as it is.

Raw cocoa bars or Larabars.

raw cocoa bars.jpg

Peanut butter on anything: toast, apples, celery, dates, spoon.

apple peanut butter

My favorite chocolate peanut butter ugly smoothie that I have evvverrrryyy morning. It’s so good I’m still not sick of it! Plus it’s a great way for me to get 2-3 servings of fruits and veggies into my day.

chocolate peanut butter smoothie

Beans.

veggie burgers coleslaw beans

String cheese.

Berries. Cherries.

Cereal.

honey nut chex gluten free

Panera Bread…specifically their broccoli and cheese soup or chicken wild rice with whole grain baguette. OMG.

panera broccoli cheese soup

Quinoa.

thai chicken quinoa salad.jpg

 Baked potatoes.

cranberry BBQ chicken

Although I’m not SUPER into vegetables, I am still getting at least two servings a day, usually three.

Not too shabby, right?

Pregnant or not, what are your food must-haves?

Pregnancy Update: 20 weeks!

Wait, what?!

20 weeks! I’m halfway there!

I thought you all might be interested in a bit of an update from pregnant lil’ me.

First up: 20 week bump pic

pregnancy 20 weeks

Compared to 16 weeks

IMG_1220

Baby is now measuring about 10 ounces and 6.5 inches long about the length of a banana!

How am I feeling?

  • Very normal for the most part and really enjoying being pregnant!
  • I have days where I am insanely hungry (like yesterday) where no matter what I eat I still seem to be hungry, and then I have more normal days.  I always make sure to have snacks on hand; don’t want to embarrass myself by getting “hangry” in front of strangers.
  • Excited to start working on the nursery. I have some ideas as to how I want to decorate now! More on that later.
  • Yearning to start “nesting” and getting the house baby-fied.
  • Starting to look more pregnant and not just blubbery.
  • Anxious to start feeling movements.
  • Needing to get used to people noticing my bump now. I see them look at my face and then look at my belly. I don’t always feel like it’s that obvious but I guess it must be.
  • Super lovey dovey to this baby. I dream of what he looks like and what his personality will be like.

Discomforts 

I have to say I have been very lucky (knock on wood) with very minimal discomforts, but I few things I have been noticing lately…

  • Out of breath a whole lot easier, especially going up hills.
  • Stiff and achey body all over when I wake up in the morning. It loosens up as I get moving. I sleep with pillows all around me and in between my legs and I think that helps a bit.
  • Stretching and some round ligament pain. I actually welcome this! I love it because since I’m not feeling movement yet, it helps me to know baby is growing.
  • Calf cramps at night.

Again, NOT complaining!

Cravings?

No serious cravings except for I’m almost always up for a burger still. Lately, my sweet tooth has nearly taken over my savory tooth. I was hoping that this wouldn’t happen. I am still trying to control my sugar intake. It’s tough though. I’m trying to choose foods with natural sugar like dates with peanut butter or Greek yogurt with honey.

burger yogurt

Oh, and everytime I see a subway sandwich I drool a little. 😉

Aversions?

I can’t seem to get salmon down the hatch even when I make it my favorite way.

What I’m looking forward to in the coming weeks?

Feeling this boy move!

I am absolutely loving pregnancy. 🙂 Catch up with you again later gators!

Gender Reveal: It’s a….

I think I have finally absorbed all of the excitement from the gender reveal party last Sunday so that I am now able to share it with you all. It was the most incredible, exciting, and anticipated day.

Let’s talk about the food first because the food was just awesome. I decided to have a taco bar considering tacos are one of my favorite foods. I loved that I could do all of the prep before our guests arrived so that I could just relax while they were there.

We set up our bar area with the tortilla chips, tortillas, refried beans, and taco meat (I went with beef because that’s what I’ve been gravitating towards lately). We kept the beans and the meat in crockpots to keep them warm throughout the evening.

gender reveal

On the kitchen table I set out all of the condiments: onions, black olives, lettuce, jalepenos, cheese, tomatoes, salsa, sour cream, guacamole, cilantro.

taco bar

 

taco bar

 

When it was time to eat, everyone did their own thing and made their own tacos. It was perfect! The actual dinner portion of the party didn’t happen until after the gender reveal however, so this post is a little tweaked and out of order.

 

taco bar

I had zero appetite after our gender reveal because I was so hyped with adrenaline, so while I waited for it to arrive, I munched on some delicious desserts.

taco bar

Here is my plate of food that finally got eaten a couple hours after the reveal!

taco bar

Okay, now to the reveal…

IMG_1271

The ultrasound tech had written down the gender of our baby and put it in an envelope. I then gave the envelope to my girlfriend Stacy and asked her to do the honor of filling up a balloon with either blue or pink confetti depending on the gender of baby so that we could pop it on the day of the reveal. Needless to say she found the biggest, awesomest balloon in town! That big balloon stared me down until it was time to pop it!

Going into this, I really had no idea if baby was a boy or girl and I was SO ready to find out.

Dana and I both had our large safety pins and it took us a few minutes to get all settled in and ready.

gender reveal

gender reveal

 

We had our friends and family count down from three.

gender reveal

THREE……..TWO……..ONE……POPPPPPPP!

gender reveal gender reveal gender reveal gender reveal

 

gender reveal gender reveal gender reveal 2

 

We are having a BOY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

The excitement of this moment was so unexplainable. Having so many of our dear family and friends with us as we all learned the gender of our baby was so special. The pregnancy began to feel more real at this point (well actually it wasn’t until the next day that it really sank in that we were having a boy but still).

Thank you so much to everyone for supporting us and celebrating with us. And a huge thank you to Stacy for taking care of getting the most important item of the day— that balloon!

We are so thrilled to prepare our home, lives, and hearts for a precious baby boy.

Pregnancy: Some of the Details

Hello! I am coming off of an insanely amazing weekend. Not only was it a long one, but we also got some super exciting news! More about that in a second.

First and foremost, I want to thank the incredible men and women who serve and protect our country and those who have served in the past. Thank you for your courage, strength, and dedication. Thank you for allowing us to live freely.

In case you may have missed it, I made an exciting announcement on Friday and then I left you all hanging and waiting for the details. It’s time I fill you in on the some of the details of my pregnancy.

When did we find out?

We found out just before we left for our vacation to London and Paris. I had a midwife appointment and I mentioned that there was a slight possibility that I could be pregnant. We both decided that it would be nice for me to know before going to Europe (not that this would change our travel plans) just so I could know to stay away from the champagne, unpasteurized cheeses, undercooked meats, etc. She sent me down to the lab to run a blood test and a few hours later we found out that sure enough we were pregnant!

This is something we have been wanting for a very long time so we were ecstatic to learn the news.

Finding food to eat in Europe was a bit challenging as they don’t pasteurize many of their milks and cheeses or juices. Also, we read that they don’t often wash their produce so I stayed clear of that in restaurants where I couldn’t go rinse it off. I don’t know if any of this is 100% accurate, but we didn’t want to take the risk. Of course we were also dealing with a bit of a language barrier. We learned how to ask for our meats well-done and of course skipped out on the champagne and wine. It was all good though! But I was very happy that I knew that I was pregnant so that I didn’t have to find out later and then worry about all of the things I ate or drank that I maybe shouldn’t have.

 

 

french onion soup

I allowed myself to eat the cheese only if I knew it was scorching hot!

How far along am I?

I am 16, almost 17 weeks. My estimated due date is November 7th/8th.

How have I been feeling?

I can honestly say that I am one of the lucky ones who hasn’t had to deal with morning sickness (knock on wood). I felt nauseous every once in a while in the first trimester but nothing that would send me running to the bathroom.

I was pretty fatigued in the first trimester and would be heading to bed around 8:30 on most nights.

How is my appetite? Any cravings or aversions?

This is a question I love to talk about because it’s food related, duh. In the first trimester, I feel like I could only eat small amounts before getting full. I was starting to notice that when I got hungry I really needed to eat stat. Towards the end of the first trimester and beginning of the second, my appetite went into high drive and I was hungry all of the time and was able to start eating normal sized meals again. Today, I find it best to eat smaller meals and then a few snacks. It sits best with my tummy. I feel my appetite has normalized a little bit, but I am still eating more than I was pre-pregnancy.

Cravings: I was talking to Dana about this one, because I wasn’t too sure if I was truly having any real “cravings.” But then he mentioned how I asked him to pick me up a bag of potato chips and how I had to go get myself a burger one night and then I remembered that yea, I have had a couple cravings. I just don’t get the cravings where I ABSOLUTELY MUST EAT the particular item or I will go crazy. Things just sound good to me and if I can eat them great, if not, that’s okay. I try to go with them because I feel like it’s my body telling me I need something. Chips= sodium. Burger = iron and protein. I have been wanting salty/spicy foods more so than sweet which is odd for me. I have been wanting more red meat than any other meat protein. Another strange one for me.

 

 

taco salad

Aversions: During the first trimester, the thought or smell of chili and coffee made me woozy. Also, chicken in general just wasn’t on my radar. I found that I had a hard time finding foods to eat that sounded or tasted good so often times we would make a meal, I would eat one bite and then have to go make something else because I couldn’t stomach it. Gluten-free pasta was pretty comforting to me. Annie’s mac n’ cheese came to my rescue a few times.

Since the first trimester I feel I am pretty much able to eat anything. My diet is more or less back to my pre-pregnancy diet with tons of fruits and veggies, almond milk, protein (red meat mostly, peanut butter, almond butter, cottage cheese, chicken, fish, beans), whole grains (I have been eating some gluten and seem to be tolerating it well, but still mostly sticking to gluten-free) like quinoa, brown rice tortillas, popcorn, oatmeal, etc. Larabars have been my go-to mid morning snack.

Will I be finding out the gender?

YES! I actually already know it! That’s what all the excitement was about this weekend. We hosted a get together with friends and family which included our gender reveal. We found out at the same time that all of our friends and family found out through a giant balloon popping. The excitement was off the charts! You will have to wait a bit to learn the gender. Any guesses?

moose gender reveal balloons gender reveal balloon

The answer was inside of this balloon!

The bump

I hadn’t decided if I was going to share this or not but I know that when I am reading pregnancy announcements and updates that I LOVE to see the sweet bump updates…soooooo. I am doing this for all of you.

baby bump week 16 pregnancy

I am adjusting to the changes in my body and accommodating my growing bod with elastic waistbands. I am still able to get into some of my normal jeans though! I have yet to purchase a single piece of maternity clothing. I was very fortunate to have a girlfriend who gave me a ton of maternity clothes! This just  means more money to spend on baby! 🙂

Rent the Runway decision

The reason I decided not to go with rent the runway for the upcoming wedding is because I wasn’t confident that the dresses would fit my growing belly. They were SO adorable but I just wasn’t comfortable with it. I have found two dresses since then and have two more to try on from a friend, so I should be set now.

Okay, that’s enough for now. I am so excited to share this excitement with all of you! I will check in from time to time with some more updates!

Gender guesses?! BOY OR GIRL??!