October 29, 2009

31 Weeks

Well folks, we are 31 weeks now and are within the single-digit week countdown! It's hard to believe that this pregnancy has gone by so quickly, but these past months have flown by as Jonathan and I have prepared to welcome Baby G into our family!

This last week was a good one for our family. Jonathan and I were able to spend time with Rosa and Andrew this past weekend. It was wonderful to be able to catch-up on life with them! Jonathan and I also had a date when we went shopping for baby items and purchased our carseat and a baby gym.

Following up on a previous blog, I have been able to relax a bit about H1N1 this week as well. I successfully found a clinic in the Twin Cities area which has the vaccine and I was able to secure an appointment for this coming Tuesday! I am so grateful that this has become available before Baby G's arrival. Beyond knowing that I will be protected, I have peace of mind knowing that I am doing everything I possibly can to protect my son from becoming ill with this virus once he is born.

On the pregnancy front, this week has brought about further changes. As is to be expected, my belly continues to grow and is now measuring a whopping 46 1/2 inches. Baby G is moving very regularly and especially seems to enjoy kicking Daddy when he is hugging Mama!

I have been experiencing more back pain this week than in previous weeks, but considering that my belly has grown so rapidly these last few weeks, it's certainly nothing out of the ordinary! Other than back pain, I have been very blessed and have escaped many of the common third-trimester complaints up until this point. Unless I eat a large quantity of crackers, I rarely experience heartburn and although I am frequently tired, I am still able to get quality sleep! This pregnancy has not been entirely easy, but I feel as though we have truly been blessed!

And now the countdown to meeting our little boy continues; 31 weeks down, 9 to go...

October 28, 2009

Public Service Announcement: Use Caution When Playing With Knives

For those of you that didn't hear about my latest cooking escapades, I feel obligated to inform you that there was an "incident" in the kitchen this past weekend. Jonathan and I were expecting dinner guests and we had left just enough time to finish preparing food before our guests arrived...

I decided that we needed to include vegetables in the meal so I started chopping up several bell peppers with a butcher knife. I'm still not quite sure how this happened, but I laid the knife down for a brief moment and somehow knocked it off of the cutting board and directly onto my foot below. I quickly sat down on the kitchen floor and grabbed my foot which was bleeding profusely at this point. Thankfully, Jonathan was there; he immediately handed me paper towels and an ice pack to try to stop the bleeding.

It could have been a lot worse than it was; the knife stabbed into my foot but did so at an angle, which actually helped stop some of the bleeding. I did not end up going into the emergency room for stitches- I sat with my foot elevated for awhile and then decided that I really wanted to help finish dinner before our guests arrived so I put several layers of bandages on my wound and went back to the kitchen... carefully.

It's been four days since this incident and I can now walk without pain; however, wearing shoes is another story and I'm starting to wonder if the injury was actually worse than I thought. Regardless, I am on the mend!

After our guests left that evening, I spent some time thinking about the accident and realized that I was incredibly blessed to have learned this lesson now instead of in a few months or years with a small child around the house. How easy it would have been to have a much worse outcome than to suffer the repercussions of my own clumsiness for a few days! And yes, I am being much more careful when I play with knives...

October 26, 2009

Letting Go To Be A Good Mother?

For those of you who know me well, you know that I am someone who has a tendency to worry about everything under the sun. The latest of my concerns is H1N1. Normally the emergence of another flu virus wouldn't be such an issue to me, but given the fact that I am currently responsible for two lives instead of just one, it's weighed heavily on my mind.

I have spent the last few weeks calling around in our area, trying to find a clinic or hospital that has the vaccine available, to no avail. This weekend, I finally met with success! One clinic in our area received the vaccine and I am intensely hoping that I can get an appointment to be vaccinated this week!

I realize that H1N1 is just a flu bug and that it's not the end of the world. In fact, many pregnant women have become ill with H1N1 and have been just fine. While that's all well and good (and I am genuinely happy for all the women who pulled through and are now healthy), I think the thing I fear the most is that either Jonathan or I will get the flu right before I go into labor. If that is the case, one of two things will happen...

If I get sick, then I will be put into isolation away from my baby and won't be allowed to see him. I absolutely cannot bear that thought. If Jonathan becomes ill right before I go into labor, the hospital won't allow him into the delivery room and I will be laboring by myself. I also cannot stand to think about what it would be like to be alone during one of the most challenging experiences of my life.

I realize that I am allowing my mind to go to one of the worst-case scenarios and that I really do need to relax about this whole situation, especially given that Jonathan and I are currently doing everything we can to prevent getting sick ourselves (not touching faces, washing hands/hand sanitizer, etc.), but it is so difficult for me to let go.

As a mother, I know that I won't be able to worry about every little thing or I will be overbearing and overprotective. I want my little boy to grow up and enjoy his childhood. Although I want the best for my son, I want him to have little bumps and scrapes along the way and I want him to learn important lessons that you can only achieve through trial and error. If I don't learn to let go and not to worry over every little thing, how will I ever be a good mother?

October 25, 2009

Baby Gear!

Jonathan and I went shopping today for a carseat and a baby gym! I have to say, Jonathan was really a trooper about the whole experience, given the fact that he intensely dislikes shopping, but he gladly went along with me to pick out the important gear left on our list before our little boy arrives!

We started out at Baby USA and bought our carseat, the Chicco Keyfit 30. I had previously shopped around online and found that Baby USA had the best price on this particular carseat, given that we would have paid shipping if we had decided to purchase the seat from another mainstream retailer, such as Target. We looked at the different colors offered in the Keyfit 30 and decided on the "Adventure" color- green and tan.
Chicco Keyfit 30 in Adventure

As with most baby-related items, I expected some assembly but was pleasantly surprised when I pulled the carseat out of the box and everything (including the padding) was ready for use. The only assembly with this carseat will be installing it in our car... another blog, another time!

Besides the carseat, Jonathan and I also wanted to purchase a baby gym for our little boy before his arrival. We chose the Fisher Price Precious Planet Musical Gym which includes not only the option of music but also several hanging toys and a mirror.

Fisher Price Precious Planet Musical Gym

Unlike the carseat, the gym required assembly. The assembly was very easy; the most time-consuming part was simply washing the hanging toys before attaching them to the gym.

All in all, it was a very productive day! Jonathan and I picked up the last of the necessary baby gear needed before Baby G arrives and we can now start to decide which things we want to have for our little man...

October 22, 2009

30 Weeks

Baby G and I are now 30 weeks with only ten more to go until he arrives! Like I've been saying all along, I am still hoping that he arrives earlier than ten weeks, more along the lines of seven to eight, but after talking with the doctor at our appointment today, Jonathan and I learned that we will go no farther than eleven weeks before we become a family of three!

The idea of becoming a family of three is both wonderful and frightening. While Jonathan and I are thrilled to meet Baby G and have him as a part of our family, it will mean drastic changes for us. Looking ahead to these changes this past week, I have found that my emotions jump from thrilled and excited to scared and apprehensive with little warning. It's difficult to imagine what our lives will be like with another little person being completely dependent on us, but it is an adventure that Jonathan and I are truly excited to begin!

This last week has been positive and filled with blessings in so many different ways. On Tuesday, Jonathan and I went in for our fetal echo appointment and received good news that Baby G is doing very well. We are also making progress with the nursery as the letters which spell out our little boy's name are now painted and ready to be hung!

On a personal note, I have found that I am experiencing more exhaustion this week which is to be expected as we progress farther into the third trimester. The exhaustion is not extreme, but it is vaguely reminiscent of the way that I felt throughout the first trimester. Overall though, I am still feeling good; I am sleeping quite a bit (enjoying it while I can before going back to what I can only imagine will feel somewhat like the sleep schedule I kept while in college) and am still able to exercise at the gym, albeit with some strange looks from other people who are working out alongside me! Baby G is moving consistently and both Jonathan and I love feeling his little hands and feet moving around inside of my belly!

And so we begin the countdown to meeting our little boy; 30 weeks down, 10 to go...

Week 30 Stats for Baby G:
-Uterine measurement: 32cm
-Heart Rate: 140 bpm
-Baby Bump: 45 1/2 inches

October 21, 2009

Name Preview!

Our family and friends are dying to know which name we've chosen for our son. How many letters, is it a family name, is it traditional or modern, etc. For your viewing pleasure, I have decided to give you all a sneak peak... at how the letters are decorated!

That's right- last night, I painted the letters that will hang above the changing table in Baby G's nursery. I used three different patterns on the letters so here they are...
Circles and Swirls


Multicolored Boxes

October 20, 2009

Fetal Echo Appointment

Jonathan and I went in to the University of Minnesota Hospital today to have a fetal echo performed on Baby G after being referred there during our appointment with the perinatologist. I was very apprehensive about this appointment, but was glad to be going and finding out more about Baby G's arrhythmia.

We arrived slightly late since we had trouble finding the building, but were quickly ushered in to the echo room and before we knew it, we were watching the image of Baby G's heart beating away on the screen. The technician scanned his heart for nearly half an hour, examining the structure as well as the blood flow and action within the chambers. Following the scan, we met with a pediatric cardiologist.

The cardiologist explained that she believed that Baby G was experiencing premature atrial contractions (PAC). She told us that fetal blood flow doesn't function the same way as infant blood flow within the heart; there is a flap which divides the atria of the heart which moves back and forth prior to birth. Following the birth, this flap no longer moves and the pattern of blood flow changes, but prior to being born, the movement of this flap can cause PAC in some babies.

What this means for Baby G is that we will continue to monitor his heart at our normal OB appointments and he will have an EKG roughly 24 hours after he is born to ensure that his heart is working properly.

This is very good news and Jonathan and I are thrilled to know what exactly is going on with our little boy and his heart! Thank you so much to all of you who have been thinking about our situation and praying for us- knowing that we have the support of our friends and family has been priceless during this time.

Beyond the good news we received about our little boy's heart, Jonathan and I have also decided on a name for our baby! We are so excited to be able to call him by name and, in just a few weeks, to be able to share that name with all of you!

October 19, 2009

What's In A Name?

"What's in a name? That which we call a rose would by any other name smell as sweet."

If only it was this easy to choose a name for our little boy.
Jonathan suggested a middle name that we both quickly agreed upon- it was very fitting for our little man and goes well with our last name. Since choosing a middle name, we have been through literally hundreds of first names for our baby. We have poured through list after list of both modern and traditional names; only a few have stood out to us.

Not being able to call our son by name has been difficult for us. We have grown accustomed to talking to my growing belly and simply talking to "baby" has become insufficient, especially as we have begun to understand bits and pieces of his personality.

We spent a long time tonight discussing names for Baby G and have narrowed down our list from five potential names to two. Although we think we know which name we will choose in the end, we want to be sure that we are selecting the right name for our baby boy. As such, we have decided to postpone a final decision. At our appointment tomorrow we will be having another ultrasound and will be able to see our son again; afterwards, we agreed that we will discuss the name choices and possibly come to a final decision!

Although we are thrilled to have a potential name chosen, Jonathan and I have agreed that we will not be sharing this name with anyone, nor will we be sharing the names that we are considering. It will be very challenging not to share this news, but in just a few short weeks we will be revealing it to the entire world!

The Week of Doctor Visits

This week, we have three separate doctors visits- two for Baby G and one for me! The first doctor appointment this week was a visit to the cardiologist. This was a follow-up appointment to make sure that everything is still working properly with my heart (after our little scare two years ago).

The doctor listened to my heart and talked with me about my heart and pregnancy. I was relieved to find out that Baby G's heart condition has nothing to do with my own and that there is no possibility that he could have inherited it from either Jonathan or myself.

The doctor also told me that the "dizzy spells" I have experienced a few times during pregnancy are not common to all pregnant women as I had previously thought. He explained that most dizzy spells that are experienced during pregnancy occur when a woman bends over or rolls onto her right side; mine have occurred when I have been walking or standing. The doctor told me that they are nothing to be overly concerned about, but to continue to monitor them.

The appointment today was very reassuring and later this week, Jonathan and I have two more set up; on Tuesday, we will be going in for a fetal echo appointment to examine Baby G's heart and on Thursday we will be seeing our regular OB for our 30 week appointment.

We are asking for the thoughts and prayers of family and friends, especially with regards to the appointment on Tuesday. Ideally, we would love to go in and see that there is nothing wrong with our little boy, but short of that, we are hoping that the doctors are able to clearly see what is going on and that it will be nothing serious!

October 14, 2009

29 Weeks

Well folks, Baby G and I have officially made it to 29 weeks! This last week has been pretty good for us. I've found that I had a bit more energy overall, so I've filled my time with projects like getting some exercise, washing clothes, and cooking! While this sounds productive and I'm sure you're all very impressed, if you could see the state of my house right now, I'm quite certain you would either laugh or immediately whip out your latex gloves and offer to help me clean! Yes, the cleaning has definitely suffered a bit around here this last week. That is one of my goals for this evening- to clean my kitchen, pick up my living room, and fold the heaps of laundry that Jonathan lovingly nicknamed "Mt. Clothes."

Beyond all of the things that I've been able to accomplish this week, Baby G is doing very well. He continues to be very active and has (so far) been quite considerate of not kicking mama's ribs! We don't have any new information on Baby G's heart murmur as of yet since our next doctor's appointment will be on the 20th (next Tuesday), but Jonathan and I are both eager to find out more about what's going on with our little boy! We are continuing to hope and pray that everything is fine and that he grows out of this murmur on his own.

Besides my projects and our little boy, Jonathan had a very big weekend! He spent it in Chicago and ran the Chicago Marathon on Sunday! The weather turned out to be significantly colder than was predicted so the race was very difficult. Despite ending up with a case of hypothermia, Jonathan finished in 3:14:11! He spent a half hour in the medical tent before being released and is thankfully just fine, although he is adamant that he is retiring from running marathons!

All in all, it's been a very good week for us. Now to tackle all of that cleaning...

More Recipe Sharing!

Here are a few more recipes for those of you who wanted them and I will be adding pictures as I am able to take them! Happy cooking!

Poppy Seed Chicken Cassarole

Poppy Seed Chicken Cassarole

2 lbs. (4 cups) cooked chicken breasts, cubed
1 cup (8 oz.) sour cream
2 cans cream of chicken soup
1 stick of butter, melted
55 Ritz crackers, crushed
1 tablespoon poppy seeds

Combine butter, crackers and poppy seeds. Put half of the mixture in the bottom of a buttered cassarole dish. Combine chicken, sour cream and soup. Spread on top of cracker mixture. Sprinkle remaining cracker mixture on top. Cook at 350 degrees for an hour.

Swiss Chicken

6-8 boneless, skinless chicken breasts- place in sprayed baking dish
Swiss cheese, sliced- put atop each breast
1 can cream of chicken soup- spread on top each breast

Mix together, then spread on top of each breast, pressing down slightly:
1 box Stove Top Stuffing
Butter, melted (enough to moisten stuffing)

Bake, uncovered at 325 degrees for 1 1/2 hours.

Chicken Wild Rice Soup

1 tbsp. and 1 tsp. of margerine
1/2 cup each chopped onion, chopped celery, chopped carrot
3 tbsp. flour
2 cups milk
1 cup canned chicken broth
2 oz. shredded cheddar cheese
1 cup cooked wild rice
1/8 tsp. pepper
1/8 tsp. salt

In a 3 quart saucepan heat margarine over medium high heat until bubbly and hot; add onion, celery, and carrot and saute until onion is softened, 2 to 3 minutes. Sprinkle flour over vegetables and stir quickly to combine. Continuing to stir, gradually add milk; add broth and stirring, bring just to a boil. Reduce heat to low, cover, and let simmer, stirring frequently, for 20 minutes. Add remaining ingredients to saucepan and cook, stirring constantly, until cheese is melted, 5 to 10 minutes (do not boil).

Chicken Hotdish

1 can french-style green beans- put in bottom of sprayed cassarole
1 cup cooked chicken- layer on top of beans
1/2 cup grated cheddar cheese- layer on top of chicken
16 soda crackers crumbled- sprinkle on top of cheese
1 cup cooked chicken- layer on top of crackers

In saucepan, beat together the following items:
1 can cream of chicken soup
1/2 can chicken broth
1/2 cup grated cheese

Heat until cheese melts and pour over the cassarole. Top with 6 crumbled soda crackers and bake at 350 degrees for an hour.

Oatmeal Chicken

3 tbsp. skim milk
3 tsp. whole grain mustard
1/2 cup rolled oats
3 tbsp. chopped sage leaves
8 chicken breasts, boneless and skinless
1/2 cup shredded mozarella cheese
Salt and pepper to taste

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Mix together milk and mustard in shallow dish. Mix oats with chopped sage leaves and seasoning on plate. Brush chicken with milk and press into the oats evenly. Bake chicken on cookie sheet for 40 minutes. Mix together remaining cheese, mustard, sage and seasoning to serve with chicken.

October 13, 2009

Jigsaw Puzzle, Anyone?

Despite hitting the third trimester, my desire to complete certain projects hasn't diminished! In typical pregnant, hormonal fashion, I decided today that the tupperware containers in my freezer (holding a total of six meals of soup) were taking up too much space since they were not the shape of a perfect square and were therefore wasting space along the sides of the freezer. To remedy this problem, I thawed each meal and placed them into vacuum freezer bags which fit the shape of the freezer better. Although I realize this may have been taking it a bit to the extreme, I'm desperately trying to make sure that I can fit as many meals as possible into my freezer before Baby G arrives and to do that, I need to maximize on the freezer space [please feel free to take a moment and laugh at the hormonal, pregnant lady now].

If you've read any of my cooking blogs, you can probably imagine that my freezer is a bit on the full side. Including the three meals of chili that I added to the bunch tonight, my compulsion to cook has given us 31 meals cooked and ready for Baby G's arrival and yes, my freezer looks like a jigsaw puzzle. For your amusement, I have included a picture.

Our Personal Frozen Foods Section: 31 Freezer Meals

Beyond working on cooking more meals so that Jonathan and I don't need to cook when our little boy arrives, I have also been trying to get some exercise. I do count this as another "project" since it is not nearly as fun as it used to be. Since I hit the third trimester, I have been forced to reexamine what I am physically able to do.

Before I got pregnant, I would run hard on the treadmill for a half hour, do weights and an abdominal workout. Now that I'm nearly 29 weeks pregnant, I have learned that pushing myself at the gym is not a good idea and I've become satisfied with twenty minutes on the elliptical machine. I hope to be able to continue to exercise until close to Baby G's arrival; I've found that I have much more motivation and energy throughout the day if I make it a point to get in a short workout at the gym.

Other than cooking and exercising, the other projects on my "to-do" list have yet to be completed. There are changing pad covers to be sewn, shower gifts to be put away, and thank-you notes to be written. Thank goodness I have a few more weeks!

28 and Counting!

For those of you who have followed my cooking adventures, I wanted to give you all the update! I have slowed down in cooking freezer meals for Baby G's arrival since I've been a little tired these last few weeks, but tonight I made a ton of extra soup, bringing the grand total of freezer meals up to 28!

Later this week, I'm planning to make a double-batch of chili and freezing the leftovers. That should give us another couple meals. At that point, I'm going to have to look at how much room I have left... I keep rearranging the freezer and that has seemed to work for us so far!

In other news, Baby G has the hiccups again tonight!

October 12, 2009

Recipe Sharing!

I made my mother-in-law's Vegetable Beef Barley Soup for the first time and it turned out quite good! Per request, here is her delicious recipe.

Vegetable Beef Barley Soup

2 lbs. stew meat, cut up into bite-sized pieces and browned
3-4 carrots
3 stalks celery
1 onion
1 can diced tomatoes (not drained)
1 can corn (drained)
4-5 cans Campbell's beef broth
2/3 cup medium barley
Salt, pepper, basil to taste

Combine all ingredients into pot and simmer for an hour. Check carrots for tenderness and barley should be plump and soft.

October 11, 2009

Baby Shower

My baby shower was yesterday and it was wonderful! It was a family shower, thrown by my Aunt Gail, and cousins Micaela and Kelly. Everything was absolutely beautiful- from the little tea sandwiches to the handmade party favors, and above all else, it was such a blessing to be able to celebrate Baby G with my family!
The beautiful lunch table
Hand-sewn party favor bags
The ladies who threw the shower- Gail, Micaela, and Kelly
Picture with the grandmothers

October 9, 2009

Perinatolgoist Appointment

Today Jonathan and I went to our appointment at the perinatologist's office. We had a level II ultrasound which looked at Baby G's body and his heart. The ultrasound itself was wonderful to be able to see our little boy again and the technician gave us several 3D pictures to take home.
Baby G's Head and Arms
Baby G's Hands and Feet
Baby G's Face and Hands
During the ultrasound, the technician noticed that Baby G was still experiencing an arrhythmia. When the doctor came in, she double-checked the results and confirmed that Baby G is experiencing heart murmurs every 20-50 beats. The unusual part of the murmurs is that they are occurring with one immediately following the other before going back to a normal sinus rhythm.

The doctor recommended going in for the fetal echo examination, which is scheduled for October 20. The fetal echo will determine the next course of action.

Right now, it looks as though Baby G is experiencing one of two conditions: premature atrial contraction (PAC) or premature ventricular contraction (PVC). If he is experiencing PAC, then we will continue to monitor his heartbeat through regular appointments with our OB every two weeks. If Baby G is experiencing PVC, then we will be following-up with the perinatologist for weekly ultrasound appointments to monitor his heart.

The good news is that Baby G will likely outgrow this condition without problems, but the doctors agree that it needs to be monitored to ensure that it doesn't become worse or cause any other problems. Jonathan and I were thrilled to hear that this is likely a temporary condition and that Baby G will probably be fine, but I think we'll both feel better after the appointment later this month when we know more.

Again, thank you to all of you who have been thinking and praying for us. It truly means so much to us!

October 8, 2009

Birth Class and Update

We had our first birth and parenting class tonight. Overall, it was fairly interesting although we went over general information about labor and delivery that Jonathan and I felt that we already knew. I think that the coming weeks will be more helpful as we discuss things more in-depth, such as epidurals, cesarean sections, and post-partum issues.

Tonight, the best part of the class were the relaxation techniques that we went over to use in labor. The techniques were very helpful and I think they will really help me deal with the pain of labor in a more natural manner rather than begging for painkillers after the first few contractions.

Regarding our doctor's appointment yesterday, I was on the phone this morning with the perinatologist's office as soon as they opened, only to be told that they hadn't received the referral from my doctor yet. After calling my OB's office and ensuring that they would put the referral in today, I spent much of the morning and afternoon working on something that continues to be a challenge for me- patience. If nothing else, this experience is teaching me that everything cannot be resolved all at once; it requires the coming-together of many people which does not happen on my timeline and, as such, I need to be patient and wait.

When I finally got the phone call from the perinatologist's office, I was extremely relieved. The woman I spoke with explained that our OB ordered two separate appointments to make sure that Baby G's heart is functioning normally: a level II ultrasound and a fetal echo.

The level II ultrasound will be a 3D/4D ultrasound where the perinatologist examines Baby G to make sure that he and his heart are structurally healthy. The fetal echo is a very specific ultrasound that examines the heart and how it is functioning.

We found out today that the perinatologist's office performs level II ultrasounds, but does not do the fetal echo examination (we have to go to a different clinic for that appointment). We were able to get an appointment for tomorrow for the ultrasound and we are hoping for the best. After that appointment, we will speak to the high-risk doctor and then schedule the fetal echo.

All day, I have been trying to focus on the good things in this situation rather than panicking myself with possible grim outcomes. Ironically, Jonathan and I talked earlier on in this pregnancy about the possibility of paying out-of-pocket to have a 3D/4D ultrasound done and had decided that we weren't going to spend the money on it, since it wasn't covered by insurance. Now, we have been given the opportunity to have a 3D/4D ultrasound performed that is medically necessary and, therefore, covered by insurance. Although I am still concerned about the outcome of the appointment, I feel as though we are being blessed with the opportunity to see what Baby G looks like right now!

For all the people that have read about our situation and are keeping us in your thoughts and prayers- thank you! It is appreciated more than you know and we will update you all as soon as we have more information!

October 7, 2009

28 Weeks and Difficult News

Today marks 28 weeks of pregnancy for our family. Jonathan and I went to our doctor's appointment today and got some surprising news.

Normally, our doctor listens to Baby G's heartbeat for a moment, tells us his heart rate, and then we move on with the appointment. Today as our doctor was listening to the baby's heart, we realized that something was wrong; she listened for several moments, explained that she was going to put her hand on my belly to feel the baby, and then listened for several more minutes.

Our OB explained to us that she heard an irregularity in Baby G's heartbeat. She told us that it sounded as though his heart was skipping a beat every few beats and told us that she was going to refer us to a perinatologist to determine if anything was wrong with Baby G's heart.

Hearing that something could be wrong with our baby was incredibly difficult, even though the doctor explained to us that it could be nothing. For now, we are focused on waiting; tomorrow we will be in contact with the perinatologist's office and will be making an appointment to have an ultrasound done of Baby G's heart and to talk with a high-risk doctor.

Jonathan has been incredible this afternoon and evening. He has been strong and continues to encourage me to lean on God for our strength in this situation. I don't know what I would do without him.

Beyond the challenges we faced at the doctor's appointment today, this last week has been fairly good for our pregnancy. I have been much more tired this week so I've been able to hold off on some of the cooking and cleaning that has been so necessary in past weeks. Also, this coming weekend is my second baby shower and I'm really looking forward to spending time with family and friends and celebrating Baby G!

Week 28 Stats for Baby G:
-Uterine measurement: 29cm
-Heart Rate: 150bpm
-Baby Bump: 44 inches

October 6, 2009

Little Hiccups

Today was another first for Baby G and mama! I was laying on my side this afternoon and talking to Jonathan over the internet when I felt some little kicks. It didn't take long before I realized that what I was feeling wasn't kicks- they were hiccups!

It was so exciting to be able to feel Baby G hiccuping in my belly and it made me stop and smile, thinking of what he must look like and how I'll be getting to meet him in just a few more weeks!

Fascination with my Ribs

I should start by saying that I love my baby with all of my heart and I love feeling him move and kick. Nothing could possibly compare to the reassurance of feeling that movement on a daily basis.

That being said, I am puzzled; what is my son's fascination with my right ribs? It seems as though every time that I sit forward or sit up from a prone position that some part of him (presumably his little feet from the movements I've felt) are jammed up inside my rib cage on the right side. I'm certainly not complaining- it's not terribly uncomfortable and even if it was, I am grateful that Baby G is healthy and growing, but why only my right ribs?

Last I checked, I had two sides to my rib cage and they were both equally comfortable for baby feet. What is going on in there?

October 5, 2009

Common Courtesy

Jonathan and I went to the Twins baseball game on Saturday. To get there and to get back, we took the light rail from a Park & Ride station down to the Dome. The ride there is about a half-hour and it's tricky to keep one's balance riding on a normal day, let alone when you're pregnant!

On the way down to the Dome, there was an empty seat so I sat my tired, pregnant body down. Across the aisle, there was a group of college guys, very excited about the upcoming game. The ride to the Dome wasn't unpleasant and we arrived quickly.

The game itself was wonderful, but what happened after the game was truly surprising to me. There were over 48,000 people at the Dome so I expected the train ride back to the Park & Ride to be packed, but I didn't expect to ride back with several of the same people.

The train pulled up to the Dome and Jonathan and I were some of the first people to walk inside, along with the same group of college guys and a throng of other people. The college guys bolted for the seats and one of them sat down before anyone else could sit. Normally, this wouldn't have irritated me, but the fact that I looked extremely pregnant and was exhausted made the fact that there were no open seats truly frustrating. To add insult to injury, the man sitting looked me in the eye, clearly noticed that I was pregnant and having a hard time standing with the train jerking around, and did nothing.

After roughly half the train ride, the group of college guys exited at a stop. What happened next restored my faith in the common courtesy of humanity. Several people who had been standing with me immediately made sure that the vacated seat was open for me, giving me the ability to sit and rest my tired feet!

I never thought I would be so grateful for a chance to sit down. Furthermore, the consideration of the other people on the train was truly wonderful and I genuinely appreciated it more than I could have possibly expressed.

This whole experience made it clear to me that chivalry is dying. Yes, there are considerate people and gentlemen left in the world today; thankfully I am married to one and I have the privilege of knowing several others, but they are truly the exception rather than the rule. As a mother, this strengthened my resolve to teach my son how to be selfless and chivalrous; to follow the example of the people who would watch out for the well-being of others, rather than turning a blind-eye.

October 4, 2009


Jonathan has been craving goo bars for the last few days. Today, he decided he wanted them so badly that he made a special trip out to the grocery store to pick up the ingredients! They smell delicious- we're waiting for them to cool enough to eat them now!

Goo Bars

Cream together in a bowl:

1/2 cup butter (1 stick)
1 cup flour
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup crushed graham crackers
Press mixture into the bottom of a greased 9" square pan. Sprinkle on top of mixture:
2 cups mini marshmallows
6 ounces chocolate chips
Bake in oven for 15-20 minutes at 375 degrees.

October 1, 2009

27 Weeks

We have arrived at 27 weeks of pregnancy and only have 13 more to go! Sitting here and thinking about my son's arrival causes me to wonder if I will really be meeting him in 13 weeks or if that timeframe will be shorter or longer than predicted. It's very possible that I could be sitting here next to my son in 10 weeks rather than 13. Then again, it's also very possible that I could still be sitting here staring at my growing belly in 15 weeks! Oh for the patience to wait...

Beyond my impatience, this last week of pregnancy has gone by quickly and uneventfully. I have been having fewer contractions which has certainly been a blessing. I've also noticed a slight change in Baby G's movement. He is kicking a bit less these days (more taps and pushing) and seems content to stay in the same position, which I am taking to mean that he's starting to run out of room in there. Not surprising, given how quickly my belly has grown!

Jonathan and I have also done a bit more work on Baby G's nursery this week. After choosing the monitor we wanted to use for our little one, we began debating where we should put it in his nursery. Initially, I set it on the bar of the crib, but Jonathan aptly pointed out that our son would quickly grow to the point where it would become a toy and would no longer stay on the crib. With this in mind, we purchased a corner shelf for the baby's room on which we have placed the camera. Jonathan installed the shelf this evening and it looks wonderful! We have also done a bit of work in the baby's closet with the shelving units and have hung a sign we received as a shower gift over the baby's closet. All in all, a very productive week!