Thirty-Six Weeks & Counting – The 411

Two heads of romaine lettuce with dark background

How my baby’s growing

Your baby is still packing on the pounds – at the rate of about an ounce a day. She now weighs almost 6 pounds and is more than 18 1/2 inches long (about the length of a head of romaine lettuce). She’s shedding most of the downy covering of hair that covered her body, as well as the vernix caseosa, the waxy substance that covered and protected her skin during her nine-month amniotic bath. Your baby swallows both of these substances, along with other secretions, resulting in a blackish mixture called meconium that will form the contents of her first bowel movements.

At the end of this week, your baby will be considered “early term.” (Full term is 39 to 40 weeks. Babies born before 37 weeks are preterm, 41 weeks is late term, and those born after 42 are post-term.) Most likely your baby is already head-down. But if not, your doctor or midwife may suggest scheduling an external cephalic version. That’s a fancy way of saying that your healthcare provider will apply pressure to your abdomen to try to manipulate your baby into a head-down position.

How Mommy’s life’s changing

Now that your baby is taking up so much room, you may have trouble eating a normal-size meal. Smaller, more frequent meals are often easier to handle at this point. On the other hand, you may have less heartburn and have an easier time breathing when your baby starts to “drop” down into your pelvis. This process – called lightening – often happens a few weeks before labor if this is your first baby. (If you’ve given birth before, it probably won’t happen before labor starts.) If your baby drops, you may also feel increased pressure in your lower abdomen, which may make walking increasingly uncomfortable, and you’ll probably find that you have to pee even more frequently. If your baby is very low, you may feel lots of vaginal pressure and discomfort as well. Some women say it feels as though they’re carrying a bowling ball between their legs!

You might also notice that your Braxton Hicks contractions are more frequent now. Be sure to review the signs of labor with your doctor or midwife and find out when she wants to hear from you. As a general rule, if you’re full-term, your pregnancy is uncomplicated, and your water hasn’t broken, she’ll probably have you wait to come in until you’ve been having contractions that last for about a minute each, coming every five minutes for an hour. Of course, you’ll want to call right away if you notice a decrease in your baby’s activity or think you’re leaking amniotic fluid, or if you have any vaginal bleeding, fever, a severe or persistent headache, constant abdominal pain, or vision changes.

Even if you’re enjoying an uncomplicated pregnancy, it’s best to avoid flying (or any travel far from home) during your final month because you can go into labor at any time. In fact, some airlines won’t let women on board who are due to deliver within 30 days of the flight.

BABY STATS:

How Far Along?

36 weeks !

How Big Is The Little One?

The baby is the size of a head of romaine lettuce or a spaghetti squash.

Total Weight Gain / Loss?

Eeeeek !   I gained TEN pounds of fluid weight since my hospitalization last week !  I freaked OUT !    That is a total weight gain of 23 pounds !  I had only gained 13 pounds until last week.   I lost 27 pounds my first trimester so I am still under the weight I started at but I do NOT like this weight gain AT ALL !  I am certain that it will fall off after I deliver the baby and also with breast feeding.

Maternity Clothes?

I spend most of my day in either pjs or a body con dress.  I have absolutely NO desire to do anything but shower and put on fresh pjs since I can not really leave the house due to bed rest.  I have gone out a few times to pick up breakfast and just put a dress on on top of my pjs.

Sleep?

Because I am tending to my mom at night, I am not sleeping well.  I wake up because she is talking out of her head , she gets up, or if it is time for her medications.  I have been napping during the day somewhat. My baby is pretty active around 1 am too.

Best Moment of the Week?

I have had a pretty boring week !  My mom had surgery on Friday and I am on total bed rest so I have pretty much been on the sofa or in the bed watching tv, drinking fluids and chilling. I have a biophysical exam and sono in the morning in NYC.  I see the OB after that.  My OB is in Greece until Sunday so I am praying my baby does not try to come out before he is back !  I do the second hospital tour on Sunday in preparation for the birth.  I just pray they do not try to keep me after my appt tomorrow !  I am NOT ready and my mother can not travel four hours to NYC right now. She has her post op appointment tomorrow and gets her drains out.  There is very little drainage now, which is good.

Symptoms?

My legs and feet are so swollen that I look like Miss Piggy !  My toes in the left foot are numb most of the time.  I have an external hemorrhoid that has not gone down. My baby feels super heavy and I am having sharp pains shooting down into the vaginal area and I have problems getting comfy.  I have a definitive waddle when I walk and walking has become uncomfortable due to pressure.  I try to stay on the sofa with my feet up.

Food Cravings?

I have no cravings and really no appetite.  I have more room now for food now that the baby has dropped down a bit but I still am not hungry most of the time.  I have random periods where I am starving.  I will start to eat and get uber full quickly, thus I had eating out !

Food Aversions?

I just have no desire for food at all right now.  I am sitting here drinking lemonade and a protein shake.  I will likely eat apple cinnamon oatmeal for an afternoon snack.

Gender?

baby girl !

Labor Signs?

I hope not !  I have a lot of pressure, but that is just a 5 – 6 pound baby and tons of fluid.  I had contractions in the hospital after the transvaginal exam and a cervix check and I can say without a doubt, SHOOT ME !  Do NOT let me have ANY contractions at all.  That ish is for the BIRDS !

What I Miss?

Having normal size legs and feet !

What I Am Looking Forward To?

Giving birth to a healthy baby girl in short while !   The doctors have scheduled me cesarean and I am just hoping this baby stays put until then.  They have moved our time table up a whole two weeks ! EEEEEEEEk !

Bump?

I have a low basketball !

Navel In/Out?

In

Baby / Mommy Purchases?

The only think I bought this week other than receiving the Milk Snob car seat cover, was a foot bath and Dr. Teal’s foot soak with lavender.  I am sending my sister out to get the baby a preemie outfit to wear home in the event that she is as small as they say she is and her other clothing will not fit.

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Thirty Five Weeks – The 411

Whole honeydew melon with stem in green bowl on green table

How my baby’s growing

The baby doesn’t have much room to maneuver now that she’s over 18 inches long and tips the scales at 5 1/4 pounds (about the size of a honeydew melon). Because it’s so snug in your womb, she isn’t likely to be doing somersaults anymore, but the number of times she kicks should remain about the same. Her kidneys are fully developed now, and her liver can process some waste products. Most of her basic physical development is now complete. She’ll spend the next few weeks putting on weight.

How Mommy’s life’s changing

Your uterus – which was entirely tucked away inside your pelvis when you conceived – now reaches up under your rib cage. If you could peek inside your womb, you’d see that there’s more baby than amniotic fluid in there now. Your ballooning uterus is crowding your other internal organs, too, which is why you probably have to pee more often and may be dealing with heartburn and other gastrointestinal distress. If you’re not grappling with these annoyances, you’re one of the lucky few.

From here on out, you’ll start seeing your doctor or midwife every week. Sometime between now and 37 weeks, she’ll do a vaginal and rectal culture to check for bacterium called group B streptococcum (GBS). (Don’t worry – the swab is the size of a regular cotton swab, and it won’t hurt.) GBS is usually harmless in adults, but if you have it and pass it on to your baby during birth, it can cause serious complications, such as pneumonia, meningitis, or a blood infection. Because 10 to 30 percent of pregnant women have the bacteria and don’t know it, it’s vital to be screened. (The bacteria come and go on their own – that’s why you weren’t screened earlier in pregnancy.) If you’re a GBS carrier, you’ll get IV antibiotics during labor, which will greatly reduce your baby’s risk of infection.

This is also a good time to create a birth plan. Using our form will help you focus on specifics – like who’ll be present, what pain management techniques you want to try, and where you want your baby to stay after you deliver. It will give you a starting point to discuss your preferences with your medical team. Childbirth is unpredictable, and chances are you won’t follow your plan to the letter, but thinking about your choices ahead of time – and sharing your preferences with your doctor or midwife – should take some of the anxiety out of the process.

Learn about: Arriving at the hospital

How can I prepare for my arrival at the hospital?

Long before you go into labor, you and your partner should map out the most direct route to the hospital or birth center. Find out where to park, keeping in mind that you’ll be leaving your car for at least 24 hours. Ask the hospital staff where you should enter if you arrive after-hours. Most hospitals offer tours of the obstetrical floor at designated times. Taking advantage of these tours will give you a chance to do a dry run before the big day.

BABY STATS:

How Far Along?

35 weeks !

How Big Is The Little One?

My baby is the size of a honeydew melon and she weighs 4lb 3 oz

Total Weight Gain / Loss?

Although I lost 27 pounds my first trimester, I have only gained a total of 13 pounds. Since I was in the hospital for two days and given 3-4 bags of fluids, I can not do an accurate weight reading this week.

Maternity Clothes?

I am wearing the same maternity clothing:  jeans, capris, oversized tees, maternity tees, body con dresses, sundresses, and a few of my baggy dresses from pre-pregnancy.

Sleep?

I have been sleeping well.  It was hard to sleep the two days I was in the hospital because of the monitors and the unfamiliar noises.

Best Moment of the Week?

The best moment I had this week was the relief of knowing the bleeding was not an issue of my baby and that the baby and I both were fine and also hearing of the excitement of the little gifts I sent to my sister-friend’s children.  One child has been sick and the older toddler helped to care for the other.  I was so tickled to hear how much they enjoyed the little tokens.   Now I am gearing up for my mother’s reconstructive surgery tomorrow.  She will be in the hospital for a few days.  I am just praying all remains stable with me and my little munchkin and that my mom’s surgery goes smoothly.

Symptoms?

I have an external hemorrhoid which has not gone back down.  Some mornings, I awake a bit queasy and my skin is often overly sensitive and itchy. I take children’s liquid Benedryl and it helps tremendously.  This week, I seem to be burping a lot.

Food Cravings?

I still have no appetite so I do not crave anything in particular.

Food Aversions?

None

Gender?

Girl !,

Labor Signs?

I experienced contractions after a vaginal exam in the hospital.  They discovered that I was very dehydrated and after 2 bags of fluids, the contractions stopped.

What I Miss?

Nothing at the moment except being at the beach.

What I Am Looking Forward To?

Seeing my baby and holding her.

Bump?

My little soccer ball is still nice and round.

Navel In/Out?

In

Baby Purchases?

This week, my baby’s 4Moms Breeze Play yard in Grey arrived at Target.  I had giftcards from my shower and Sunday was Run Target day with 10% off, coupled with my 15% off completion coupon, I ordered the play yard so that I could maximize the discounts on the $300 large ticket item. I ended up getting $90 off ! I also ordered a Milk Snob carseat cover to match the baby’s Kate Spade baby bag.

Thirty Four Weeks – The 411

Whole cantaloupe with green stem on table

How my baby’s growing

The baby now weighs about 5 pounds (about the size of a cantaloupe) and is almost 18 inches long. Her fat layers – which will help regulate her body temperature once she’s born – are filling her out, making her rounder. Her skin is also smoother than ever. Her central nervous system is maturing, and her lungs are continuing to mature as well. If you’ve been nervous about preterm labor, you’ll be happy to know that babies born between 34 and 37 weeks who have no other health problems generally do fine. They may need a short stay in the neonatal nursery and may have a few short-term health issues, but in the long run, they usually do as well as full-term babies.

And from this week, until two weeks before birth, she will continue to gain about a half-pound of weight each week. Unlike the first trimester, the weight between all babies in the third trimester is much more variable. Some babies weigh more and are taller; other babies weigh less and are shorter.

Also unlike the first trimester, by week 34, not much is changing. The baby continues gaining weight through the development of subcutaneous fat, and with that weight, is probably gaining strength in her movements. You may even be startled by a sudden jab to the ribs, or be able to see a punch to your belly from the outside!

How Mommy’s life’s changing

By this week, fatigue has probably set in again, though maybe not with the same coma-like intensity of your first trimester. Your tiredness is perfectly understandable, given the physical strain you’re under and the restless nights of frequent pee breaks and tossing and turning while trying to get comfortable.

Now’s the time to slow down and save up your energy for labor day (and beyond). If you’ve been sitting or lying down for a long time, don’t jump up too quickly. Blood can pool in your feet and legs, causing a temporary drop in your blood pressure when you get up that can make you feel dizzy.

If you notice itchy red bumps or welts on your belly, and possibly your thighs and buttocks as well, you may have a condition called pruritic urticarial papules and plaques of pregnancy (PUPPP for short).

Up to 1 percent of pregnant women develop PUPPP, which is harmless but can be quite uncomfortable. See your healthcare provider so she can make sure it’s not a more serious problem, provide treatment to make you more comfortable, and refer you to a dermatologist if necessary. Also be sure to call her if you feel intense itchiness all over your body, even if you don’t have a rash. It could signal a liver problem.

BABY STATS:

How Far Along?

34 weeks !

How Big Is The Little One?

My little one now weighs in at 4 pounds 1 ounce

Total Weight Gain / Loss?

To my surprise, I got on the scale this morning after my shower and I have gained a total of five pounds this week !   I am up 13 pounds !!!!   WTH?  I think a few of these pounds are the swelling I have from hip to CANKLE ! After walking around NYC yesterday plus the 4 hour trip up there and back for my appointments, I was extremely swollen in my legs, calves, thighs, and ankles. (cankles !)  My feet look like they belong to Miss Piggy !

Maternity Clothes?

I am pretty sure my round belly will NOT fit into my normal clothing.  I have worn maternity jeans, capris and baggy tees all week.  My running tights are uncomfortable now.

Sleep?

I sleep pretty well and try to stay on my left side.  My baby HATES when I lie on my back.

Best Moment of the Week?

My best moments this week was (1) getting more awesome gifts in honor of my baby girl and hearing her heartbeat at my MFM appointment yesterday.  My placenta previa has resolved itself and the baby is growing and everything looks awesome.  After my ultrasounds, the doctor put me on the monitor for 20 mins and my mom and I sat there and listened to that perfect little heartbeat.  Now we are preparing for my mom’s reconstructive surgery next week.  I just hope she heals quickly with no complications since we are very close to my delivery date. I really do not want to have to hire a full time nurse to help me with the baby.

Symptoms?

I am experiencing an external hemorrhoid ! It is NO fun !  Luckily it doesn’t hurt nor does it burn.  The problem is, I can feel it and it makes for an uncomfy to sit down.  I read that it it best to lie on your side and avoid sitting and standing for long periods.  I stood around for almost 2 hours yesterday waiting until we could leave for Union Station from NY.  Luckily we were able to take an earlier trip instead of having to wait until 2 pm.

Food Cravings?

I still have no appetite !  I am trying to focus on protein right now since my protein levels were low when they did my blood draw two weeks ago.

Food Aversions?

Thank goodness my aversions are gone !

Gender?

Baby Girl !

Labor Signs?

None

What I Miss?

My legs and feet not swelling up every time I travel or do a lot of walking.

What I Am Looking Forward To?

Our HD Live / 4D Ultrasound this week and seeing this little face up close and personal !

Bump?

I have a nice little round soccer ball that measures 36 weeks.

Navel In/Out?

In

Baby  / Mommy Purchases?

I have not made any purchases, however we got some amazing gifts in the mail this week.  We received a Medela Shoulder Bag for the Pump In Style Dual Electric Breast Pump, a gorgeous dress from St. Barth, France from my Godmother, Bree, A Kinde Bottle/Breast Milk warmer, and a baby jungle gym.

Thirty-Three Weeks – The 411

Two pineapples in wicker basket on table

How my baby’s growing

This week your baby weighs about 5 pounds and has passed the 17-inch mark (about the size of a pineapple). She’s rapidly losing that wrinkled, alien look, and her skeleton is hardening. The bones in her skull aren’t fused together, which allows them to move and slightly overlap, thus making it easier for her to fit through the birth canal. (The pressure on the head during birth is so intense that many babies are born with a cone-head–like appearance.) These bones don’t entirely fuse until early adulthood, so they can grow as her brain and other tissue expands during infancy and childhood.

How mommy’s life’s changing

As your baby fills out even more of your belly, lots of things might start to change: Whereas before you were sashaying, you may find yourself waddling. Finding an easy position to sit in – let alone sleep – is becoming more of a challenge. And bumping into chairs and counters is par for the course.

You may be feeling some achiness and even numbness in your fingers, wrists, and hands. Like many other tissues in your body, those in your wrist can retain fluid, which can increase pressure in the carpal tunnel, a bony canal in your wrist.

Nerves that run through this “tunnel” may end up pinched, creating numbness; tingling, shooting or burning pain; or a dull ache. Try wearing a splint to stabilize your wrist or propping up your arm with a pillow when you sleep. If your work requires repetitive hand movements (at a keyboard or on an assembly line, for instance), remember to stretch your hands when you take breaks – which should be frequently.

Many women still feel sexy at this stage – and their partners often agree. You may need to make some adjustments, but for most women, sex during pregnancy is fine right up until their water breaks or their labor starts.

Learn about: Monitoring your baby’s movements

How often should I feel movements?

Your baby should be moving as frequently as she has for the last month or so. Every baby has her own pattern of activity and there’s no correct one. As long as you don’t notice any major changes in your baby’s activity level, chances are she’s doing just fine.

Do I need to keep track of my baby’s kicks?

For an added sense of security, many healthcare providers recommend that after 28 weeks, you formally monitor your baby’s movements at least once or twice a day. There are lots of different ways to do these “kick counts,” so check with your doctor or midwife about how she wants you to track your baby’s movements. Here’s one common approach: Choose a time of day when your baby tends to be active. (Ideally, you’ll want to do the counts at roughly the same time each day.) Sit quietly or lie on your side so you won’t get distracted. Time how long it takes for you to feel 10 distinct movements – kicks, twitches, and whole body movements all count. You should feel at least 10 movements within two hours. (Don’t worry; it probably won’t take that long. Sometimes you’ll feel 10 kicks within the first 10 minutes.) If you don’t feel 10 movements in two hours, stop counting and call your healthcare provider.

What should I do if I think my baby’s movements have slowed or changed?

Let your doctor or midwife know right away if you notice a slowdown of your baby’s movements. A decrease in fetal movement may signal a problem, and you’ll need a nonstress test or biophysical profile to check on your baby.

BABY STATS:

How Far Along?

33 weeks !

How Big Is The Little One?

My little angel is the size of a pineapple

Total Weight Gain / Loss?

I did not weigh this week, but as of last weigh in, I was up 8 pounds.  I lost 27 pounds first trimester, so I think I am doing pretty good !

Maternity Clothes?

Still rocking running pants, maternity leggings, oversized tees, body con dresses and mostly pjs since I have barely left the house this week.  The baby shower wore me OUT !

Sleep?

I sleep pretty well.  I do wake up a few times to urinate, but otherwise, I have no problem falling asleep.

Best Moment of the Week?

My week has pretty much revolved around resting, cooking and baking.  I was craving fried flounder and chips so I made that yesterday and today I wanted Baby Lima Bean and Country Ham Bone Soup, homemade buttermilk biscuits and grilled center cut pork chops.  I made egg custard pies for my mom using my great Grandmom’s recipe with a few tweaks of my own.  I wanted swiss n cheddar burgers for breakfast and homemade fresh cut fries so I made that at 8 am lol.  I only eat a few bites of anything before I am full, so I do not worry about weight gain.  Now that I am not as repulsed by the smell of food and sight of food, I really enjoyed the few bites of food I indulged in this week.

Symptoms?

My baby has been extremely active the past few days.  She was almost radio silent for the past few weeks with the exception of certain times.  Now, she is moving a lot again… Especially when I am trying to sleep or when I put belly buds on and play Mozart or Beethoven.

Constipation is plaguing me so I am back to taking 3 Colace in the am and drinking coffee with Miralax in it periodically.  That does the trick.

I had blood work last week and my TSH is extremely low (.066), my protein, fluid levels iron levels, Vitamin D, calcium, platelet counts, rbc… everything is LOW !  The baby is taking all my nutrients.  My sister instructed me to up my fluid intake and protein.  I went to get protein shakes but the kind I like was out of stock.  I will make a point of getting some this weekend and start drinking two per day that are 35g each.

Food Cravings?

Burgers, fresh cut fries, cheese, fried fish

Food Aversions?

None

Gender?

Female

Labor Signs?

None

What I Miss?

Wine and Sangria

What I Am Looking Forward To?

Meeting this little angel and seeing who she looks like… what she sounds like… what she smells like.

Bump?

My bump is growing a little… becoming more round.


Navel In/Out?

In

Baby / Mommy Purchases?

I didn’t buy anything this week.

What’s New?

My mom is going to be doing her reconstructive surgery in a week.  I am hoping the have a cancellation and can get her in next week so that she has time to properly heal before I have my cesarean.  Since they are doing a tummy tuck for a flap and her breasts, I am hoping she will be able to sit up straight and be functional by the time baby girl is here, since I will not be able to lift her.

Thirty Two Weeks – The 411

How my baby’s growing

By now, your baby weighs 4 1/2 pounds (about the size of a large jicama) and is about 16.7 inches long, taking up a lot of space in your uterus. You’re gaining about a pound a week and roughly half of that goes right to your baby. She’ll gain a third to half of her birth weight during the next 7 weeks as she fattens up for survival outside the womb. She now has toenails, fingernails, and real hair (or at least respectable peach fuzz). Her skin is becoming soft and smooth as she plumps up in preparation for birth.

She is sleeping approximately 90 to 95 percent of the day.

Most of her wrinkles are disappearing, especially on her face, as more fat is deposited under her skin. Her hair is becoming thicker with each passing week, and you may even be able to see it on an ultrasound! She will also begin to settle in the head-down position, as her birth is fast approaching.

How mommy’s life is changing

To accommodate you and your baby’s growing needs, your blood volume has increased 40 to 50 percent since you got pregnant. With your uterus pushing up near your diaphragm and crowding your stomach, the consequences may be shortness of breath and heartburn. To help relieve your discomfort, try sleeping propped up with pillows and eating smaller meals more often.

You may have lower-back pain as your pregnancy advances. If you do, let your doctor or midwife know right away, particularly if you haven’t had back pain before, since it can be a sign of preterm labor.

Assuming it’s not preterm labor that’s ailing you, you can probably blame your growing uterus and hormonal changes for your aching back. Your expanding uterus shifts your center of gravity and stretches and weakens your abdominal muscles, changing your posture and putting a strain on your back. Hormonal changes in pregnancy loosen your joints and the ligaments that attach your pelvic bones to your spine. This can make you feel less stable and cause pain when you walk, stand, sit for long periods, roll over in bed, get out of a low chair or the tub, bend, or lift things.

BABY STATS:

How Far Along?

32 Weeks !!  Woot Woot !!!

How Big Is The Little One?

The baby is the size of a jicama

Total Weight Gain / Loss?

I have gained 1 lb 3 oz this week for a total gain of 8.5 pounds.  I lost 27 lbs the first trimester.

Maternity Clothes?

I am still rocking maternity jean, capris, body con dresses, and oversized tees and running leggings.

Sleep?

I am sleeping most of the night with the exception of getting up to pee.  Occasionally I fall asleep earlier than normal and I wake up for a few hours and watch tv before going back to sleep.

Best Moment of the Week?

Although the baby shower day started off bad for me, as we got stuck in traffic and arrived 40 minutes prior to the start of the shower and we were 20 mins late starting because we had to set up and I was already upset that 12 people (some rsvp’d for 2 ppl) cancelled the week of the shower, some the day or two before, and  8 people were no shows, causing me to lose $2500 , after the room was put together, I calmed down and decided to just enjoy this day I had worked so hard on for the past several months. Those who were supposed to be there were and those who wanted to be there and could not were there in spirit and the all the rest… EFF THEM ! 🙂    The room decor, the floral arrangements, the food, etc … was perfect.  The event was very elegant and beautiful, just the way I envisioned it.  My family and friends had an amazing time and loved the decor.

After the baby shower, we packed up and cleaned up the party room.  Before I could get the car out of the garage, I noticed I had 26 invites on Instagram and a ton of replies to some posts on Facebook.  I click on it to see that two of my friends posted pictures from the event without asking me.  That started a shitstorm of comments, emails, inboxes, calls and texts !   My personal life is private and I keep it very separate from my public life.  Everyone who I wanted to know about my pregnancy and life, knew.  Now all of the 5000 FB fans, old classmates, other family whom I do not even deal with nor speak too, associates etc, were seeing the pics posted and started asking if I was pregnant or congratulating me… all of which I ignored !   I DO NOT comment on my personal life PERIOD.   I ended up at the mall after my mom’s physical therapy appointment on Monday, so I changed my cell phone number, which I had planned to do some time ago when the whole stalking situation was in full swing.  The FBI and NYPD I was dealing with suggested I not change it at that time so that the stalker would keep contacting and they could document it and build a case.   It was time to do a purge anyway.  Too many people over time have been given my number for various reasons and I do not stay in contact with these people.  It amazes me that they felt it appropriate to text me and ask if I were pregnant.  I went to the posts on FB and changed the audience viewing on the pics so that only those tagged in it and those I wanted to see the pics could actually see it and now the drama has died down.  I was livid that my friends posted those pics.  You do NOT do that.  Just because you were invited to an event does not translate to you posting pics for the world to see unless you clear it with the event host.  I hired a professional photographer and a professional videographer to document the event and to put together a video and photo cd for the guests. Now I see why people make you put cell phones in a basket at the entrance to venues !    There is a previous post I made about my baby shower.  Take a peek to see the pics…

Today, I went to LabCorp for a ton of blood work.  I was supposed to have an OB appointment, but I did not feel up to the 3hr train ride to NYC from DC and back.  My legs were very swollen after the baby shower all the way up to my hips !  My legs and ankles looked like they belonged to someone else…   I had the blood work ordered stat and sent to CNY as well as my OB.  I have my next appointment in 2 weeks anyway and also an MFM appointment for a scan and other testing, so unless I start feeling symptoms or feeling bad, I am good with that !

Symptoms?

My skin has been feeling like it is crawling and is super sensitive.  My sister told me to take Benedryl for the itching and crawling feeling and it worked !  I took a few doses of liquid children’s Benedryl and I have been fine since.  My baby feels a lot heavier and she does not move as much as she was before.  It is like she is asleep most of the time.

My boobs FINALLY stopped hurting !   I was in so much pain and the pain evolved to a shooting and stabbing type pain.  On Saturday, it finally just went away !

I have kankles ! 😦

Food Cravings?

I have had no real cravings lately.  Today, I wanted bbq chicken and fresh cooked veggies, so I made that, ate a plate and got over full after eating only half the plate.

Food Aversions?

My aversions are pretty much gone, thank goodness !

Gender?

It’s a GIRL !!!!

Labor Signs?

None

What I Miss

Sangria and a nice glass of wine

What I Am Looking Forward To?

Being able to see this baby and bond with her.  Getting back to the beach for the Winter and hanging out on the beach with the baby and my mom.

Bump?

Still a soccer ball !   I have not gotten much bigger.

Navel In/Out?

In

Baby / Mommy Purchases?.

The only things I have bought were Aden & Anais swaddling blankets I found at SAMS Club for $6.41 and $4.91 for a FOUR pack !!  Such a steal so I bought 24 of them lol.

I will finish up my registry at the end of the month after I wait to see what other items are purchased by those who claim they are going to send a gift who didn’t bother to show up for my shower.  I was waiting for Amazon and Target to post the 15% off completion coupon.  They finally posted them this week so I will wait until the first week of September and then order the few things that we will need, which is basically her Mamaroo swing/bouncer, 4Moms play yard/bassinet, high chair, crib sheets, and burpy bibs. Everything else, I have already purchased along the way or was gifted for the shower.

Thirty One Weeks ! – The 411

How my baby’s growing

This week, my baby measures over 16 inches long. She weighs about 4 pounds (about the size of a coconut) and is heading into a growth spurt. She can turn her head from side to side, and her arms, legs, and body are beginning to plump up as needed fat accumulates underneath her skin. She’s probably moving a lot, too, so you may have trouble sleeping because your baby’s kicks and somersaults keep you up. Take comfort: All this moving is a sign that your baby is active and healthy.

How mommy’s life’s changing

Have you noticed the muscles in your uterus tightening now and then? Many women feel these random contractions – called Braxton Hicks contractions – in the second half of pregnancy. Often lasting about 30 seconds, they’re irregular, and at this point, they should be infrequent and painless. Frequent contractions, on the other hand – even those that don’t hurt – may be a sign of preterm labor. Call your doctor or midwife immediately if you have more than four contractions in an hour or any other signs of preterm labor. These include an increase in vaginal discharge or a change in the type of discharge (if it becomes watery, mucus-like, or bloody – even if it’s pink or just tinged with blood); abdominal pain or menstrual-like cramping; an increase in pressure in the pelvic area; or low back pain, especially if you didn’t have it before.

You may have noticed some leaking of colostrum, or “premilk,” from your breasts lately. If so, try tucking some nursing pads into your bra to protect your clothes. (If not, it’s nothing to worry about. Your breasts are making colostrum even if you don’t see any.) If your current bra is too snug, you might also want to pick up a nursing bra. Choose a nursing bra at least one cup size bigger than you need now. When your milk comes in, you’ll be grateful for that extra room!

If you’re having a boy, you and your partner will want to take some time to think about whether or not to have your baby circumcised. Find out the pros and cons from your doctor, and what the procedure involves.

BABY STATS:

How Far Along?

31 weeks !!

How Big Is The Little One?

My little one is the size of a coconut

Total Weight Gain / Loss?

I have gained a total of 7 pounds.  None this week.  I lost 27 pounds during the first trimester so I am doing pretty good.  I think weight gain will start to happen from here on out because baby girl is going to gain 1/2 pound a week.

Maternity Clothes?

I am still wearing my too big maternity skinny jeans, boyfriend jeans, capris, bodycon dresses, oversized tees and running tights.

Sleep?

I sleep like a baby until I have to get up to go urinate !  I do wake up some mornings around 1 or 2 am to the baby moving but I am able to go back to sleep if I do not find something on tv to watch.

Best Moment of the Week?

I have had a ball shopping for baby shower game gifts.  Since my shower is co-ed, I decided to make some gift boxes out of old wooden cigar boxes filled with brown shredded paper and topped with a shot glass, miniature liquor bottles and a Davidoff cigar that says “it’s a girl.”  For the girls, I have Victoria’s Secret perfum, perfumed mist, and lotion with a poof and I am gonna grab a similar body wash from Walmart and put it in a gift box.  I also have two Angel Ball cookie gift boxes coming from a bake shop in Cleveland.  Today, a lot of the items I ordered for the tables and decorations will arrive via Fedex or UPS.

Cerveza, Limon y cigar !

Victoria Secret Body Products & Bath gel with bath scrunchie

Snow Angel Ball Cookie Gift Boxes

Tomorrow, I will pack the car and await the custom baked cookies shaped like onesies, diamonds, rattles, etc to arrive and then put them in the car along with my bags and will be leaving for NYC on Saturday morning early.  Our friends start flying in on Saturday and several of them are staying at the hotel I blocked off.

I have to bake scones tomorrow as well, but only because my scones are ridiculously amazing and I have had few that will compare :-).   My sister is going to make southwest chicken egg rolls (mini ones) and the caterer (Butterfield Market) will be dropping off the rest of the menu items on Sunday for the shower.  Make My Cake is making the two tier cake which is for decor only.  Sprinkles is providing cupcakes and we ordered clear boxes to put them in. I am picking up silver and white ribbon today to tie around the boxes. I am still waiting on my white linen dress to arrive which was shipped days ago !  Hopefully it will be here before Friday….

In other exciting news, more baby shower gifts have arrived and I blown away at the generosity and thought put into the gifts. One of my colleagues, a guy, decided to text me yesterday and told me he sent money via Western Union because he is not good at baby shopping and feels like a bull in a china shop lol.  He sent the baby cash so I will pick out a gift on my amazon registry from him.  My sister friend in Canada sent the baby a whole wardrobe of clothing from Baby Gap and Gymboree ! She even sent tights and shoes to match !!  I was in tears looking at the clothes and it started to sink in… this baby is coming in a few weeks and she is REAL.  She will be rocking clothes and I will be able to see her, smell her, feel her and hold her !  It is still surreal to me.  I just can not wrap my mind around a real baby….   It is a weird place to be.

Symptoms?

My baby is doing flips and kicks that are more noticeable.  She is getting bigger and she responds to my touch and voice now more than ever.  If I tap or rub, she moves to that area or kicks that exact spot.

I awake some mornings feeling like I have to vomit but it passes quickly. My breasts have started a whole new level of hurt !  I experienced shooting pain the other day so bad, I could not sleep.  I got up and put on a nursing bra that looks like a sports bra to keep my boobs from moving and that provided a little relief.  After a while, I just took two Tylenol and went to sleep.  The next morning, I made my nursing tea and the symptoms subsided.

I have noticed that I am still restless at night and I often switch from the bed to the couch for comfort.  But I am sleeping…  I still have no appetite but my aversions to Chick Fil A and sweets is now gone.

My skin is ultrasensitive.  I feel like my skin is crawling sometimes.  I am also growing raised moles and skin tags under my breasts which gross me out.  My OB is referring me to a Dermatologist. 

Food Cravings?

Soda !  Mountain Dew….

Food Aversions?

Not anymore

Gender?

Baby Girl

Labor Signs?

None

What I Miss?

The normal placement of my hands and sleeping on my stomach at times. I usually sleep on my side, but I am afraid to roll onto my tummy or back.

What I Am Looking Forward To?

My baby shower this weekend in NYC, my HD Live sonogram next week, and my maternity photo shoot I will do in the next two weeks.  I am still shopping for a gown to wear.

Bump?

Still have a little soccer ball !

Navel In/Out?

In

Baby / Mommy Purchases?

This week, they had a crazy deal at SAMS Club that I learned about on Hip 2 Save.  They had 4pks of Aden and Anais swaddling blankets (normally $40+) for only $6.41 !!  At some SAMS, they were as low as $4.41.   I got six pks for me and four pks for a friend in Texas since their store didn’t have any.  So now my baby has 49 Aden and Anais swaddling blankets and six more organic cotton ones from another vendor.

Nine Tips To Take Care of Sore Breasts During Pregnancy – The 411

Courtesy of LadyCareHealth.com


Pregnancy can be a beautiful journey for a new mother. However, the journey would be filled with its fair share of complications. And one such complication that is experienced by hordes of pregnant women is the condition of sore, painful breasts during this period.

Pregnancy and Sore Breasts

Even though a pregnant woman may start to notice the soreness in her breasts only after 1-2 weeks after conceiving, in reality her breasts would have started to change even before she realizes her pregnancy.

So Why Exactly Do the Breasts Become Sore During Pregnancy?

When a woman becomes pregnant, her body starts undergoing a sea of hormonal changes. Her body starts secreting more progesterone and estrogen, hormones that are responsible for factors like breast enlargement. With the overwhelming hormone buildup in the body, the breasts start growing in size. In addition to increased blood circulation and their fat layers which start thickening, your breasts would also start developing milk glands to prep up for delivery

This massive change in turn can cause a series of uncomfortable physical side effects, including breast soreness, tenderness, pain, tingling sensation, and swelling etc. Some women feel extreme discomfort and pain even if their breasts brush against clothing or are touched. And even though the hormone levels in your body would stabilize after a few weeks into the pregnancy, the soreness in your breasts may continue until after you give birth.

Taking Care of Breast Soreness During Pregnancy

Although you won’t be able to get rid of the soreness completely, you can opt for certain remedies to handle it better. Here are a few of the more popular options.

Choose the Right Bra

Getting the Cup Size Right

Your cup size should be the measure from the fullest part of your breasts (from under them). Avoid opting for smaller, ill fitting cup sizes that can cause extreme discomfort and pain.

Your breast would start growing from day 1 of your pregnancy and would most surely have increased by at least a few cup sizes by the time you give birth. So make it a point to buy some extra bras (increasing cup sizes) to help you support your breasts throughout the term.

Getting the Right Kind of Bra

Underwired bras would be very uncomfortable during pregnancy. Opt for more supportive bras, for instance a sports bra that can accommodate the increase in breast size and hold your breasts firmly in place, thus minimizing the discomfort and pain that accompany breast movement.

Seamless bras would also help as seams can cause irritation to the breast skin during pregnancy. If you opt for the same nevertheless, opt for breast pads to place in between the breasts and the bra lining. This would prevent irritation and protect the nipples from as well.

Sleep in Your Bra

This would help keep your breasts movements to a minimum and help you cope with the tenderness, soreness and pain better.

Take a Warm Water Bath or Shower

A warm water bath could work wonders to sooth aching breasts during pregnancy. Make sure the water temperature is below 100 degrees Fahrenheit (anything above that could prove to be harmful for the body).

Fill the bath tub with warm water and lie down in it for some time, making sure your breasts are fully immersed in the water. Make circular motions on the water with your hands to make the water flow over your breasts. This could soothe them to an extent.

Alternatively, you can opt for a warm water shower bath. Open the shower and let the warm stream hit your breasts. Even though this is considered a good option by many to soothe sore breasts, you should not opt for it if you start to feel pain.

Try Avoiding Contact

This may take some persuasion from your part but it could be one of the many ways to cope with sore breasts during pregnancy. Avoid touching your breasts during this period except when you take a bath or moisturize them. Speak to your partner and explain the situation to him. Request him to avoid touching your breasts or be very gentle in instances where he does so.

Apply Creams and Lotions to Get Comfort

Recommended by many new mothers out there, this remedy to soothe sore breasts involves applying creams and lotions over the breasts regularly. You can opt for over the counter products or home remedies for the same. Accordingly, you can opt for lotions or creams that contain lanolin as an active ingredient.

Lanolin helps to prevent dryness, irritation and infection in sore breasts. Other alternatives to lanolin include chamomile or calendula. For instance, chamomile tea bags placed on tender breasts can ease swelling and discomfort to great extents. If you want a more a naturalistic approach to dealing with sore breasts, you can opt for products like mango butter, cocoa butter, shea butter or natural herbs for the same.