21 weeks

I’m always a few days late with these updates…so technically I’m almost half way through the week, but I figure how much can I change in a few days, right?? One of these days I’ll try and post on time….

So, 21 weeks. Updates for this week include: Another lb gained and baby GIRL is moving and squirming around more and more. This marks the first week that Brett got to feel her from the outside. Does anyone else ever notice that baby seems to just know when it’s the mom’s hand on the belly vs anyone else’s?? Brett and I can be sitting on the couch, watching our evening show (we’re flying through Scandal on Netflix and LOVING it) and I can have my hand causally resting on the bump. Baby will start squirming and kicking like crazy, and I’ll quickly grab Brett’s hand and place in on my belly and then he feels….nothing. It’s like baby knows it’s not my hand and suddenly she gets all shy and doesn’t care to perform. So it’s taken quite some time for me to finally be able to do the hand switch quick enough for Brett to feel a good kick! I feel like we spent most of this week really letting it sink in that we are having another girl! Every time I think about it I get more and more excited and when I see two little sisters together I can’t help but smile (or cry, but you know…pregnancy hormones….) The 21st week also marks the moment where this pregnancy no longer went unnoticed. I’ve switched to wearing maternity pants full time this week and the belly just popped (as least to me it has). I had numerous nurses on my unit suddenly exclaim “Oh my gosh, you’re pregnant?!” on Friday and it made me laugh to answer, “Yup, 21 weeks…it’s another girl” to all of their astonished faces. It’s not that I MEANT to hide it for this long, it’s just a weird thing to casually bring up at work so I was just waiting for everyone to finally notice. And I guess now is the time! You know when I first started these updates, around 17 weeks, and I said I was carrying smaller than I was with Leah? I think that time too has passed. I look at pictures from the same week with my first pregnancy and I definitely think I look bigger this time around. I’ll have to post some side-by-side pictures for a true comparison. My belly is also SO different than it was with Leah. With Leah, I was more round where as this belly seems to be more narrow on the sides and pointy in the middle. My friend’s husband calls those pointy bellies “torpedo bellies” and I’m afraid this one may be one of those….We shall see as I continue to grow! It is funny to me just how differently your body can carry a second pregnancy, even when the first was only 2 years ago. We leave for New York this Friday for a full week to visit Brett’s family and see his sister get married so my next update will be from NY!

Life Lately…

1. Leah is enjoying her first summer Popsicles.  This is the first time she had a Popsicle of her very own (as opposed to just licks of mine or Brett’s) and she is highly enjoying the summer experience. It was actually humorous to watch her the first time trying to figure out how to hold it by the stick, but she got the hang of it pretty quickly. Of course she’s not the neatest Popsicle eater in the world so she generally eats them half stripped down outside on the front porch where she can easily be hosed off. Nothing says summer like sticky toddler Popsicle hands, right??

2. I have been craving milkshakes with this pregnancy like something fierce. I think it’s because my stomach still can’t really handle a bowl of ice cream at night without my stomach starting to hurt, so I’m all about getting mid-afternoon milkshakes. On the healthier side…

I could seriously eat my weight in hummus right now. Cucumbers and peppers dipped in red pepper hummus is seriously my all time favorite snack, closely followed by pita chips dipped in hummus. Which is funny to me since even the sight of hummus made me want to gag when I was pregnant with Leah….

3. Leah is becoming such an independent swimmer!! We bought her a new arm/chest floaty a couple of weeks ago and she just took off in the pool. She loves to kick around like a big girl and jump off the side into the water all by herself. It boggles my mind how she is big enough to be swimming on her own already!!

4. Lucy is getting bigger (and cuter) and she seems to be making it her life mission to destroy our house plant. Every time I catch her ripping off the leaves she immediately stops and runs away, clearly knowing she is being naughty, but as soon as I turn my back once again she is back at it with the plant!! In spite of her shenanigans, we still love her and we are really enjoying having a dog in the family. Leah and Lucy are so cute together and it melts my heart every time I catch them playing and snuggling. (Random side note, we have had a few people jokingly ask us if baby #2 will have an L name to match Leah and Lucy and I adamantly say “NO!” We didn’t purposely name Lucy an L name and, as cute as her name is, I already find myself accidentally yelling Lucy instead of Leah and vice versa so  I can honestly say that baby number 2 will not be joining the L name crew!)

5. My youngest sister had a baby!! Little Madelyn Michelle was born in Alaska on the 4th of July and I am already in love with her puffy lips. Sadly, with them living so far away, it will be awhile before I get to meet my second niece, but until then I am enjoying all the pictures she sends of her! Crazy enough, I am one of 4 girls and our baby will be the 4th granddaughter…..so maybe we will be an all girl family who have all girls!

6. This proud smile coming from the big girl who used the potty for the first time ever!!! I’ll spare you the picture of the actual pee in her little potty (of course I took a picture!!) It was so funny because, although she asks to sit on her potty all of the time, she had yet to actually do anything in the past. Her potty time usually ends after 2 mins where she makes funny grunt sounds and faces and pushes on her stomach to “push the pee pee out” before jumping up and proclaiming that she is “all done! Good girl Leah!” So I really did not expect this time to be any different. I was busy giving Lucy a much needed bath in the tub (which side note, pisses Leah off to no end since that is “my tub!!”) and Leah was sitting on her potty perch watching me. I kept asking if she was all done and she would just give me a calm “nope!” before going back to singing her ABC’s (which tend to stop at “P” before starting all over again…). As I was finishing up blow drying Lucy, Leah proudly jumped up saying “All done!” and I looked in, shocked to see that she had actually gone!!! I think I freaked her out with my intense and over enthusiastic praise, but I was just so shocked!! No, she has yet to do it again, but it was a darn good start!

7. We bought this cute, tiny little baby shirt at a cute little shop down by our beach. Yes, I bought it in blue (with a matching pink one for Leah) because at the time I still honestly believed that baby was a boy! Oh well, baby girl will just be rocking blue and I still think it’s about the cutest thing in the world. I just love teeny tiny baby clothes!!

8. Random, funny story: When the Children’s Hospital where I work opened (we used to be a part of the adult hospital before moving across the street into a free standing hospital) we got to wear these lovely (said sarcastically) silk scarves at our hospital’s grand opening event. The scarves matched the different units color theme and they are printed with the hospital’s logo. Let’s just say that it’s been shoved in the back of my closet for the past 3 years. Well, somehow Leah found it and has decided that she loves this fashion accessory. Brett takes her to school in the morning and apparently they keep it in the back seat for her to wear once she gets into her car seat. The other weekend when we were all in the car together Leah was whining for her “scarf” and I asked Brett, confused, what she meant. “Oh,” he replied calmly, “She wants her riding scarf.” And with that he reached behind him and handed Leah my lovely bright orange hospital scarf that she immediately wrapped around her neck. So there we have it, a riding scarf for Leah. If only we could all be so fancy….

9. I have been attending a spin class and a cardio interval class at my gym 2x a week. I am LOVING spin, as hard as it is, because it really feels like it is keeping my legs (and more importantly, my butt!) in shape during this pregnancy. When I was pregnant with Leah I didn’t really work out much at all, so this is all so different for me this time around. I will definitely be writing a post about my experience with working out while pregnant soon!

10. Leah has been loving trips to the playground, regardless of how hot and humid it is outside. It’s always a battle to get her to leave, but it’s worth it to see how much fun she has! This past time she totally shocked me by climbing up the ladder to the slide all by herself. Usually I hold her under her arms to help her lift her small body from one step to the next, but this time she was adamant about doing it herself. “Mommy I do it!” she would scold me if I tried to touch her so I stood back and watched, amazed, as her strong little arms and legs pulled herself up. I know she’s almost 2 and all, but every time she does something like this it really makes me realize that she is definitely not a baby anymore!! Also, she insists on wearing this exact outfit whenever we go to the park. She calls it her “play suit” and she will run to go find it whenever I say that we are going to walk to the park. Who knows what she will do once she outgrows it!

11. Talking about big girl…this month Leah moved up to the 2-3 year old classroom! She is such a smart girl that they moved her up before she turned 2 because she is definitely ready. I love it because it has a more pre-school structure, as opposed to the baby room she used to be in, and it’s insane to see how fast she learns. The other night at dinner she sang “Twinkle Twinkle” pretty much word for word (complete with hand motions!), which isn’t a song we usually sing at home (here, we’re all about the ABCs and “Wheels on the Bus” these days…) so I knew it was something she learned in school, which I love!! I also love hearing her talk about her friends at school and who she played with that day. As much as working (even part time) can make me feel guilty at times, when I see how verbal Leah is and how much she is learning it really makes me see the value of her few hours of “school” every day!

12. And last, but not least….this girl’s personality lately has been cracking me up. It was funny because the other day my mother-in-law texted me and Brett a picture of two pairs of shoes she bought Leah as options for her flower girl dress for my sister-in-law’s wedding in a few weeks and she asked “Do you think Leah will have a preference?” and I immediately laughed and texted back, “Definitely!!” Lately, this girl has an opinion about EVERYTHING, from the shoes she wears to school, to what color bib she wears, to what she eats for dinner to what pj’s she wears to bed (which is why she usually ends up with some lovely get-ups such as this one-her beloved “kitty cat” shirt with her “doggy” pants). I’m trying really hard to find a balance between encouraging her independence and choice making, but also setting down the rules and making sure she knows that mommy and daddy are in charge. When it comes to pj’s, I could really care less if she wants to put together her own outfit creations, but when it comes to snacks and dinner, she does not get free reign! (Which would basically lead her to eating either crackers, yogurt or Cheerios if she had the choice…) This has led to quite a few fits these days, but we are slowly finding our groove with allowing options, without letting miss bossy pants totally take over. One things for sure, this girl definitely knows what she wants! Although I’m doubting a career as a fashion designer is in her future…. ;-)

20 weeks

Half Way!!!
So the biggest news this week is that we found out that baby is a GIRL!!! Cue shocked expressions….The night before we found out we jokingly asked friends and family members to cast their final votes and the result was overwhelmingly “boy!” Brett and I (and Leah!) were also firmly planted in team boy. (Side note on Leah..our little girly trouble maker is VERY intrigued with boys these days, so she had been saying baby was a boy all along…)

Thursday morning I awoke with butterflies in my stomach, both excited and anxious to head to our scan. We decided to bring Leah along, not that she would ever remember, but we thought it would be a fun memory for us that she was there when we found out her sibling’s gender. We lucked out with the world’s sweetest ultra sound tech who patiently put up with Leah’s multiple “what’s that?” questions and walked us through the entire scan. At one point when she was measuring baby’s legs, she did a quick scan over the “area” and I caught a quick glimpse.  At that point I was pretty sure it was a girl, since nothing major stood out, but I wasn’t 100% positive. So we waited while the measurements continued, my heart pounding the entire time. And then came the big question…”Do you guys want to know what you are having?” We gave an overwhelming “YES!” and she laughed and commented that baby was positioned with her goods perfectly visible. (Which really was so sweet and considerate of her, compared to her older sister who made me work for it-drinking juice, peeing, and jumping around like a mad woman before she finally showed us her goods. I guess we know who the easy child is going to be…) And then we heard the big news, “Looks like Leah will be getting a sister! Baby is a GIRL!” Immediately tears started streaming down my face and I couldn’t stop smiling. And the crazy part was, as much as I really thought baby was going to be a boy up until that moment, when we were told that it was a girl a sense of peace swept over me and I thought “well of course baby is a girl!” I felt at that moment that I had always known she was there with me and that obviously she could never be anything other than her sweet self. Motherhood is funny that way. Even while still in the womb the baby becomes uniquely and indistinctively yours and you feel like you have already loved them your entire life.

Brett was, of course, shocked but thrilled. The tech joked and said “Sorry daddy!” but, looking at the sweet smile on his face as he heard the news, I felt that this man was made to have girls. He reminds me of my own father when I watch him with Leah; patient, fun, loving, and instilling a strong confidence in her that can only come from her daddy. And as for Leah? I cannot stop smiling when I think about the gift she is getting. A sister!! There is honestly nothing in the world like a sister. I should know, I have three of the very best ones in the world. Three God made best friends. And I can only hope and pray that Leah (and baby no name) cherish their relationship as I do my own. Brett and I are already planning on how to change Leah’s room around to accommodate her new baby SISTER and my heart feels full.

If you are still reading after all that, here’s a few more updates for the half way point!
Total weight gain: 6 lbs. I jokingly told Brett the other day that my body seems more than competent at making up for lost time. Yes, I might have had a slow start with the pregnancy weight gain, but, no worries! We can catch right back up in no time. My body is all, “Oh you just ate a yogurt? Okay, I’ll just add another lb for that…”
How clothes are fitting: So the other day at work I’m walking to lunch and all of the sudden “pop!” my pants came unsnapped. That’s when I decided that it might be time to make the switch to maternity pants. And then, as I slid my maternity work pants on the next day, I thought “Why the heck did I put this off for so long! These are so comfy!!” And then half way through the day, after the 10 millionth time of pulling up my pants I remembered why. Yes, maternity pants are the bomb, but they are also a pain in the butt when your bump doesn’t exactly fill them out yet….
Movement: Baby girl is rocking and rolling in there, but definitely not as much as her big sister was. I definitely feel her moving constantly, but she seems more relaxed and chill unlike her sister who started her tumbling career in the womb….Let’s just say I am hoping that this calmness in the womb translates into a calm baby…it’s possible, right???
How I’m feeling: Awesome! Lots of energy, no excessive sleepiness. I’ve been hitting the gym a few times a week and feeling great at work so let’s just say I’m fully enjoying this “honeymoon phase” of pregnancy…
Random: I don’t remember if I’ve said this already, but my sister-in-law AND two of my best friends/co-workers are all pregnant as well and we are all due within 2 months of each other. Now, as we are all finding out the genders (2 girls and a boy so far…the last of the group will find out in month or so…) I find myself giddy with excitement at having all these babies at the same time. My friends and I already joke about forced play dates, whether our kids like each other or not, but there really is something so fun about having babies at the same time as friends!

19 weeks

19 weeks! Updates for this week include……Another lb gained, baby is starting to move like CRAZY (the movements are still like little light flutters, but when baby kicks hard enough I’m starting to feel him/her from the outside if my hand is exactly in the right spot…), and I’m still craving salt, salt, salt! With Leah I was all about the sweets…ice cream, cookies, chocolate, you name it, I wanted it. With baby #2, I could totally pass on the brownies, but then eat an entire bag of pita chips. Not sure either is the healthier option….The belly is starting to really pop this week (at least to me). I’m still fitting into my normal work pants (and STILL no one at work seems to know I’m pregnant…) but I have pulled out my all time favorite maternity shorts from when I was pregnant with Leah (being worn in above pictures). These shorts are sooo comfy, but after wearing them until 41 weeks with Leah, and then passing them on to my sister when she was pregnant, let’s just say the belly band is a bit stretched out. Even with it folded down, I’ve still been hiking up my shorts all day, but it’s totally worth it. Just give me a few more weeks and I’m sure this stomach will be filling out the belly band once again. So! Let’s talk gender for a minute!! We are (hopefully!) finding out whether baby is a boy or a girl this Thursday at my 20 week scan (so as you can see, I’m always a few days behind with these weekly updates, but oh well…) Everyone and their mother is telling me that this baby is a BOY (including one of our super sweet 70 something year old hospital volunteer who apparently is “never wrong” and who took one look at me and said, “You know it’s a boy, right?” And, truth be told, when I was pregnant with Leah she did correctly guess girl….) so I feel myself being sucked in and definitely, definitely thinking this kid is a boy. Which totally means that it’ll be a girl, right? I, on the other hand, stink at guessing what other people are having (I am seriously always wrong) so I don’t even know what to think about my own. I keep getting asked if I have a “feeling” on “inclination,” but honestly I don’t, besides the fact that boy, boy, boy has been pounded into my head from everyone around me. Yes, this pregnancy has been a little different than my last, yes baby’s heart rate is consistently lower than Leah’s ever was and yes, I’m craving salty foods, so all signs DO seem to point to boy, but  we all know those “signs” mean nothing in the end. So wait we will for just a few more days!! Honestly, I will be thrilled no matter what baby is. A lot of people seem to assume that I want a boy, “Oh, well since you already have a girl!”But, growing up with all sisters, I would be thrilled to pieces if Leah gets to experience just a little of what I did. So as lame as it is to say “All I want is a healthy baby!” I can totally say with 100% conviction that, no matter what gender news we hear on Thursday, I will be crying tears of joy!!!

Leah’s (almost) 2 year old photo shoot.

It hit me the other day that Leah is almost TWO! It boggles my mind how fast time is flying by because in my mind, she’s still this itty bitty baby. As I was pondering about how big my child is getting, it hit me how few real photos we have of Leah. Don’t get me wrong, Brett and I combined probably have well over 3,000 photos of Leah, taken during the first (almost)two years of life, but 95% of those photos are taken by our Iphones. And as nice, and convenient, as it is to always have a camera on your phone to snap an impromptu photo, it’s also a shame because having that convenience means that we pull out our “real” camera a lot less often. So, with that thought, I bugged reminded Brett a million times to make sure he brought his real camera to the island over the weekend so we could do a little photo shoot with Leah on the beach. And our little model gave us well over a hundred adorable shots and I seriously love them all. So, with that, I give you way more photos than you probably ever wanted to see from Leah’s (almost) two year old photo shoot. Grandparents, if you have favorites let me know and I would be happy to send you some prints!