I decided to compile a list of some of the things I’ve been loving this pregnancy – I would say this second time around I’m way more relaxed & honestly have barely bought or started planning anything (and I’m nearly 30 weeks!). By 30 weeks with Will we already had 80% of the nursery done, I’d had my babyshower & was elbows deep in organizing baby gear. I think this is a rather common phenomenon with non first children!
Care Of Vitamins – you might have seen these being promoted by celebs on Instagram, but I tried them & love them. When you’re pregnant you’re taking your vitamins daily & I love that they come in individual packs which are perfect for travelling. And I like that you can change up what comes in the pack every month. When I had really bad morning sickness I was adding B12’s, and now with all the crazy pandemic stuff I’ve added immune support like elderberry & probiotics. I love that I don’t have bottles of vitamins on my counters or cluttering up my cabinets. & the little packs they come in are compostable!!
THESE Old Navy lounge pants. This pregnancy I’m having a hard time finding things I find to be comfortable. I’ll be wearing leggings & or maternity jeans & out of nowhere I’ll be annoyed with how tight around my belly it is. But these bad boys are SO comfortable & so soft. I honestly wear them 5 nights a week! In fact I have a second pair in an online shopping cart.
My Hydroflask! Something I use every.single.day! I’m so thirsty when I’m pregnant or breastfeeding & I crave ICE cold water. I love the hydroflask because it doesn’t sweat, it keeps water cold for hours on end. I usually fill it up with pebble ice from work before I leave and the ice is still solid when I wake up in the morning! I have a narrow bottle which I prefer because it fits in cup holders. Right off the bat it might seem pricey but it’s literally the only water bottle I use & I take it pretty much everywhere I go!
Belly Band – I never wore one during my first pregnancy, but this time around by lower back kills me by the end of the day. I ended up getting one off of amazon that said it was good for back pain, & oh my goodness does it make a difference! I wear it whenever I’m working out (except yoga) & when I’m doing a lot of walking or standing. I usually end up wearing it in the afternoon when I’m running around chasing Will, & standing to cook dinner. At less than $25 it’s worth it if you’re struggling with lower back pain & still have months till delivery!
Thred Up – this online second hand retailer is awesome in general but it’s for sure a favorite when pregnant. I hate shelling out full price stuff for maternity jeans, shorts, dresses etc. Usually maternity stuff is lightly used & less than half priced – WIN WIN! I also use thred up to clean out my closet. You can order a clean out bag for fee & they’ll send you a bag that’s already had a shipping label on it & you fill it up with your items & ship it back – they’ll pay you for any items they choose to list & donate whatever they don’t want! Talk about easy!
This one you don’t have to be pregnant to enjoy, I recently ordered DAE hair shampoo & conditioner & have been LOVING it. It’s a little on the pricier side but it’s a super clean product – free of sulfates, parabens, formaldehyde, less than 1% synthetic fragrance. I’ve dabbled in pricier hair stuff before & always been left a little unimpressed, but this stuff seriously makes my hair SO soft & way less frizzy when air dries!
I officially hit my second trimester last week & I’m making a conscious effort to document this pregnancy more than I did the first time around! Who knows if we’ll have another baby after #2 & the idea that this could potentially be my last time being pregnant makes me want to cherish it even more. So I thought I’d do a little round up of my first trimester, since I didn’t share that we were even expecting until I was well into it.
Truth: Surprise Surprise – This addition totally caught us by surprise, I was honestly shocked when the test came back positive. I was so certain that I wasn’t pregnant that I actually took a test right before I left for work, thinking it’d be negative & I could continue on assuming I was just was getting sick. whoooops. protip: don’t take a pregnancy test 10 minutes before you have to leave for work. Looking back I have no idea how I made it through my 10 hour shift, let alone made it out the door without telling our babysitter. I consider myself a fairly organized person who loves to plan so this surprise pregnancy definitely caught me off guard & it honestly took me a minute to come to terms with this change in our plans. Now I couldn’t be more excited, but wowza.
Truth: Growing a human is exhausting – The first trimester totally kicked my butt. I had forgotten all about that pregnancy exhaustion, that paired with chasing after a toddler all day, had me asleep on the couch by 8pm most nights those first few months. On weekends I’d lay down after breakfast & wake up an hour or two later, shocked I could sleep through Will & Chris playing! I still feel that lingering exhaustion although it is getting much better.
Truth: Even pancakes will make me vomit – When I was pregnant with William, I only threw up once. I remember feeling queezy but I could always manage it. This time around has been totally different. Even the most benign things like pancakes would make me throw up. Being sick was actually something that tipped me off that I could be pregnant – versus when I got pregnant with Will, I wasn’t sick until weeks later. I had to spend most of the first trimester eating pieces of sourdough toast with extra butter & chicken broth. Even now large amounts of meat kind of gross me out.
I thought I’d also share some photos that I snapped during the first trimester.
This eye mask goes in the freezer, I used it during my first pregnancy & it’s still one of my favorite things. It’s perfect if you have a headache or are nauseated or if your sinuses are really inflamed!! Clearly the first trimester was quite glamorous lol.
We took William to the pumpkin patch last week! He loved it!! There was so much for him to take in & he loved touching all the different textures of the pumpkins. Will is turning 6 months old next week, it’s so crazy to think he’s half a year old! He’s just getting more and more fun each day!!
Time is flying! I feel like I blinked and it’s October. This month William went on his first plane ride, discovered the possibilities of rolling over & sleeping on his tummy. He continues to babble & learned how to blow spit bubbles. His budding friendship with his fur sisters is just about the cutest thing I’ve seen. I can’t get enough of his tender curiousty with the world around him.
The Pregnancy Countdown Book: This countdown style book has a little blurb for each day. It’s also separated out by weeks & trimester. I liked that this book wasn’t terribly dense, it gives real life advice from real mommas & has a lighthearted feel which makes it fun to read. Pregnancy doesn’t have to be this in depth research project you embark on as soon as the second line appears. I had some knowledge I retained from my nursing school semester of maternity, but otherwise I found this book to be just informative enough. I loved this book while I was pregnant; each week Chris & I would read the weeks chapter & find out what our little babe was up to.
Bringing Up Bebe: By far my favorite book. This book is written by an American woman raising her children in Paris with her British husband. It explores how French babies sleep through the night by 3 months, why there are no kids menus in French restaurants & kids are eating everything from baked brie, cold veggies & variety of fish. I found myself relating with the French more than I ever imagined. Not only does the book give tips on how to have good eaters & sleepers & kids that say please & thank you; it also provides encouragement with chapters like The Perfect Mother Does Not Exist. At the end of the day you have to do your very best. There is no gold medal for having a totally un-medicated birth, you aren’t rewarded bonus points for breastfeeding your baby until they’re two. I think this book provides some amazing insights on how to have overarching principles when raising your kids but also letting them be kids.
Ina May’s Guide To Childbirth: I think whether you plan to get an epidural ASAP, or are aiming for an unmedicated birth I think reading this book can be tremendously helpful. Even if your plan is to get that epidural you may be laboring at home until you’re far enough along to be admitted to the hospital, so having some insights on making that process easier is always a good idea. I labored naturally for 30 hours before getting an epidural & I do think this book came in handy for that. I also think the first portion where women recount their birth stories can be incredibly powerful & motivating if you are attempting a natural unmedicated birth. I’ll admit I read about half of the birth stories & then skipped ahead to the second half of the book that discusses practical ways to labor.
How Not To Hate Your Husband After Kids: Chris got me this as a half joke. It’s definitely funny to read & if you’re contemplating having kids then I’m sure you’re wondering in what ways your relationship will change. Everyone has seen the couples that are so bitter & resentful toward one another after babies, well this book was written by a woman like that. It’s insightful & gives good advice in regards to diffusing situations, talking about clear expectations etc. Some chapters include: TGIM how not to hate your weekends after kids, Hot Mess: less clutter fewer fights. This book is written to be fairly funny however I imagine the more real these issues are for you the less funny it becomes. Still I think it’s a great book that encourages talking to your partner about potentials stumbling blocks & it is pretty funny.
What are some of your favorite books for pregnancy, childbirth or parenting??
I finished week 3 of BBG last week & I’m LOVING it! I’m so excited to start week 4 tomorrow. I’m doing the program with two friends & it’s so much easier when you have other people keeping you on track. We don’t do the actual workouts together, but we keep one another motivated with a group chat.
This pumping bra is awesome! I ordered it on amazon & highly recommend it. So if you’re a new momma & are looking for a great & cheap pumping bra check this one out.
This weekend we took William out to brunch & he did so well, he was just sitting on Chris’ lap just taking it all in & then decided he’d spend the second half of brunch snoozing.
Chris & I started watching The Crown on Netflix & it’s SO good. I wasn’t sure if I would like it but the show is really well done. We realized we knew very little about the Royal Family at the start of the series & each episode we end up googling something that comes up.
We got William a little activity seat (it’s what he’s sitting in on in the first photo) & he looks SO big to me! He’s still a little small for the seat & doesn’t love it right now, but when he’s in there holding his head up he already looks so grown up!
I’m starting to plan out my work schedule when I return & even though I’m not going back to work until mid September, I have to submit my requests for my schedule at the end of this month & it makes it feel closer than it is. It’s so bittersweet thinking about having to go back to work. It makes me so sad to think about leaving William for 11 hours at time but I’m admittedly getting a little stir crazy being at home with not much on the calendar
Chris & I went on a date this weekend, we went out to dinner & to a Bob Schneider concert. It felt so nice to get out for a few hours.
Below are some of the workout songs I’ve been loving. I usually listen to “Firestone” station on Pandora & then I get ideas for what to put on my Spotify playlist.
With my due date just a few days away I’ve been thinking a lot about ways I’ve spent the last couple of months & there are a few things that I think every soon to be mama should put on her list.
Prenatal Yoga – the hospital I’m delivering at offered a 6 week prenatal yoga class & it was some of the best $100 I’ve spent this pregnancy. Each Monday I walked to the yoga room & for 90 minutes was able to focus on stretching, breathing & getting to be around other very pregnant soon to be mamas. Since the class ended I’ve been trying to stick with stretching because I know it can only help me with delivery day comes. If your hospital doesn’t offer a class or you don’t want to shell out money just head to YouTube and search for 3rd trimester yoga and see the results pour in. I promise you won’t be disappointed!!
LadyMoon – As much as I talked about how great it is to go on a babymoon with your significant other, I think if you can swing it some kind of Ladymoon with your girlfriends can be just as important! It doesn’t have to be overnight, it doesn’t have to be fancy, it can be as simple as a dinner out somewhere that makes delicious mocktails. There’s nothing being surrounded by some of your favorite women & if you have the opportunity to get pampered why not go for it.
REST! Whenever you want, how much you want & don’t feel guilty about it. In the third trimester I revisited the power of an afternoon nap. The last six weeks or so of this trimester my sleep at night really started to be impacted. I know a lot of women who have trouble sleeping much sooner than that, so I certainly count myself lucky, but once I stopped working & could really indulge in the afternoon nap I went for it. Chris typically calls me when he’s leaving work to say he’s on his way home, and more often than not these days that phone call finds me asleep on the couch!
Shower – this might sound odd, but one of my goals this trimester was to shower whenever I felt like it for as long as I wanted, uninterrupted. I’m not always the biggest fan of showers, mostly because I hate washing my hair & having to blow dry it afterward. I’m typically a wash my hair every 3-4 days gal; but this trimester it dawned on me showers will be harder to come by & I know hearing a crying baby will definitely make a shower far less enjoyable. So I decided this is my last chance to be under hot water for as long as I please & not feel any guilt.
Meal Prep – Come up with a handful of meals you can make ahead of time & freeze. A few friends of mine picked a random day & dedicated it to cooking these freeze ahead meals. If that sounds far to daunting then try to cook one meal a week that you can make a double batch of & freeze the second half. Some of the meals we made were: Lasagna, beef chili, chicken teriyaki, squash soup & a jumbalaya. All of these items reheat nicely & I know will be such a lifesaver in the weeks to come. Because we live in an apartment our freezer situation is pretty tight, so I went ahead and sent a couple meals with one of my friends who I know will come visit me in the first few weeks & told her when she comes just to bring one or two of the meals! Whether you’re cooking or your enlisting the help of friends or family, having some meals ready to go that just need to be heated up will take some of the pressure off in the first few weeks.
Go out to dinner – Chris & I made a little list of some of our favorite restaurants in San Francisco & decided to make an effort to go to them one last time before the baby came. I personally tried to pick places that have yummy desserts, now that I’m not indulging in a fancy cocktail or a glass of wine I’ve become quite the dessert connoisseur. It’s been so nice to have a leisurely dinner at some of our favorite places & just relish in this moment of time right before our world gets turned upside down.
Acupuncture – I’ve talked about my love for acupuncture in previous posts & how much it helped in the first trimester with keeping morning sickness at bay & energy levels up. Now in the third trimester I’ve been going more & more frequently. Throughout this trimester I’ve started to experience more pregnancy symptoms, when I was still working my back began to hurt from standing all day. In the final six weeks or so of my pregnancy I began developing significant carpal tunnel & hand swelling & acupuncture really helped alleviate some of the discomfort that went along with it. And as of the past few weeks I’ve been going to try to prepare my body for birth. One of my biggest goals is to try my hardest to avoid induction, I really trust my body & although my doctor is okay with being going to 42 weeks, it honestly sounds a little terrifying to go that far overdue. My acupuncturist specializes in women’s health / fertility & is very confident in her ability to send the right signals to my body to promote labor. As someone who was going to acupuncture long before I was pregnant & saw the results I can’t help but recommend it for almost everyone! Stay tuned for what I think about the “induction” sessions & if they really work to bring about labor!
Take a birth class – no matter what your ideal birth plan is it’s probably a good idea to take some kind of class just in case mother nature has other plans. Often times women can be sent home from the hospital if they are not far enough along in their labor, and having ways to cope with labor before you can be admitted and get an epidural is a smart idea. If you’re in the bay area I highly recommend Bay Area Birth Education. This class was awesome. It was a little daunting when we saw that it was an ALL day class, but we both felt so much more prepared for what is to come afterward. I anticipated a fairly granola approach, with lots of discussion about natural births however I must say I thought they did an amazing job of presenting all the options women are faced with in an incredibly non judgmental way.
Get organized – As someone who appreciates a good list this was definitely a must for me. Chris & I created a list of things that we had to get done before the baby got here. It included things like getting our cars oil changed & detailed before installing the bases to the carseat, specific tasks to finish up the nursery like hanging shelves, setting up our baby monitor etc. I’ll be sharing our list in case anyone is curious, but I highly recommend sitting down & thinking about the things that must get done & things you would love to have done before baby is here & setting aside a couple tasks each week. By breaking the list up it can make it seem much more manageable. Plus if you have family or friends who want to help you it’s a great way to know what tasks you can ask them to do for you. For instance my parents came to town for a few days & wanted to help me so I had them help me wash the cover for our sectional couch which was something that absolutely needed to be done & is a huge pain in the butt.
Finalize your maternity leave plans – every state has different benefits & amount of time they give to new mothers. Navigating this process can feel very overwhelming so the sooner you start asking your colleagues, researching online & getting things in order the better. California is generous when it comes to time off for both pregnancy & in the weeks following the birth. & Even though I had a few women at work who could help shed some light about how to navigate the system it was still very confusing & involved me having to calculate out how much vacation time, sick time, holiday time I would be using.
Bonus ENJOY! – As hard as it can be, try your very hardest to enjoy your third trimester. As I sit here writing this post just a few days shy of my due date, I honestly can’t believe it’s already here. It feels both like yesterday & forever ago that we sat in the car in awe with our first ultrasound photos & had this nervous excited energy buzzing in us. Now with the birth upon us it’s so crazy to think that we’re on the brink of a completely new season of life. Chris & I often talk about seasons & we really made it a point to enjoy this season of being married but not having babies. Even though having a family is incredibly important to both of us & was something that we looked forward to & talked at length about even from our first date! We really made it a priority to relish in the season that led up to it because we won’t ever have that time again. I know we are about to embark on an experience & feel love bigger than we can even imagine right now but I think anytime a season ends it inevitably feels bittersweet. So I’m really trying to just be present & enjoy this time right now.
Did any other mommas feel this end of season bittersweetness I describe? I know that in a week or two I probably won’t even remember I felt this way!
Our nursery is finally done!!! It feels so good to have everything wrapped up. Since we are saving the gender of our baby for delivery day we had to opt for a very neutral room. Neither of us were super into some of the generic themes you can find at superstores. When coming up with our plan for designing the nursery we first picked out a paint color & then we chose furniture. Next we decided that we should choose a bright rug & have that kind of lead us. We ended up doing a plant theme & I think it turned out SO cute, I couldn’t be happier. Some of my favorite pieces in the nursery are the sweet mobile that came from an Etsy shop called The Felting Dorcas, I also really love the accent wall above the dresser / changing station. I found some glass hexagon shelves on Etsy & filled them with small river rocks & some artificial greenery & I think it totally ties the room together!
This past Sunday I hit 37 weeks & it feels so surreal that this baby is going to make his or her appearance any day now. I’m officially off of work as of last week & am fully in preparation mode. As a nurse I’m used to having random week days off, so at first it just felt like I had a long stretch of days off but now it’s really setting in that I won’t be heading back to work until the fall! Throughout the entirety of Chris & my relationship I have either worked nightshift or for the past 3 years worked swing shifts which meant coming home around 2am. So this is the first time in five years that we’re seeing each other every night & eating dinner / going to bed together like most couples, it’s something we were both very excited about!
As for how I’m spending my final weeks pre baby? Well I’m certainly soaking in taking afternoon naps & just resting whenever I feel like. But I’ve also got a decent list of little projects that I’m trying to tackle, mostly random cleaning or organization tasks. Our baby room is done, our hospital bags are packed & my freezer is already stuffed to the brim with food for once baby is here. My parents are finally back in town, they spent the month of March away so I can breathe easy knowing they are just a few hour drive away if baby decides to come early now. My mom is planning to come next week to help me with some cleaning, which I’m pretty excited about. Aside from cleaning & resting I’m wrapping up some last minute self care items: getting new glasses, getting my hair cut etc. And of course I’m going to acupuncture especially as I get closer & closer. My major goal this week is to finish our 2017 photo book, I make one each year with all our pictures & I’m SO close to finishing last years & I know I absolutely NEED to get it done before this baby gets here otherwise it may never happen so that is a top item this week.
Below is a photo from the last shift I worked. My amazing coworkers threw my the sweetest send off, it was super hero themed on account of me being SUPER pregnant.
San Francisco has been experiencing some of the most beautiful spring weather for the last week, late into the afternoon you can still comfortably walk around in shorts & a T-shirt. It’s been amazing, & we’ve definitely been taking advantage. Here’s some photos from the past week in all this beautiful weather! My little baby is officially the size of a pineapple which seems SO big. I haven’t been doing serial bump shots in the same outfit or anything like that, but I occasionally get inspired to document the bump because I know it’ll be gone before I know it. So today I got some photos to commemorate week 29, the pineapple week, Juno was very intrigued as to what was happening. This past week I’ve started to feel really pregnant. I’m way more tired after a standard day & notice that it’s just getting harder to move around. The nurse in me knows it’s my bodies way of telling me I shouldn’t be trying to do quite as much. So I’ve been trying to my best to listen & slow down a little bit. I’ve been trying to find easy ways to get Juno exercised & the beach is definitely a fail safe. So yesterday we spent the afternoon at Ocean Beach, I was able to sit on a blanket & let the bump get some sunshine while Juno chased after a ball. Along with feeling more tired, I’ve noticed that my cravings are coming back & once I have my mind set on something I have to have it! This morning it was a sourdough bagel with the honey almond shmear from Noah’s Bagels. Juno & I walked 2 miles round trip in order to get this & it was SO worth it! I’m spending the next five out of six days working, so needless to say we don’t have anything exciting planned this weekend, but next weekend we’re going on our second mini babymoon & I’m super excited!