Thursday, June 4, 2015

The 6-Week Doctor Visit

This week I had my 6-week doctor appointment. I wasn't nervous, but I definitely came in with a lot of questions. I wasn't told after I delivered how badly I tore, so I was curious about that. I heard tears are measured in degrees, and all I knew was that it hurt and seemed to take a while to heal. I also was incredibly antsy to workout again, and wanted to make sure I had the go ahead, especially since I'm breastfeeding. And my husband had some questions he wanted me to ask about- did we have the go ahead to have some mommy & daddy fun? What were my birth control options?

For the momma's out there wondering what happens at this appointment, it was relatively quick and mostly painless. They checked my weight (still 10 lbs over pre-pregnancy) and blood pressure, like every prenatal appointment. The nurse asked all the same questions from the prenatal appointment as far as my general health went. Then the doctor does a vaginal exam to check how your healed and if your uterus is back in the right position. She also checked my breasts since I am breastfeeding. I will say the vaginal/uterus exam was a little bit uncomfortable, but not as bad as the cervix check from pregnancy.

I found out I tore in two different places, both second degree tears. Third is the worst, but I guess having tears in two places might have been why my lady parts felt pretty raw for so long. However, everything was healed up "nicely" my doctor said, lol. I got the go ahead to workout! I went to a hot yoga class the next day. I'm thrilled! And to my husband's delight, we got the go ahead for in the bedroom too. (Lube, ladies. Buy lube.)

I was surprised that my doctor recommended condoms for birth control, just because there are only a few varieties of the pill you can take when breastfeeding, and you have to be taking the pill for at least 30 days for it to be effective. Plus, there is no way to know when you're ovulating until you have your first postpartum period. If you're looking for a longer-term birth control, she recommended the IUD, but since we aren't sure quite when we want another little one, she recommended condoms and the pill.

Hope that demystifies the postpartum visit for ladies out there who had vaginal births!


Baby Must-Haves

So looking back at our registry, we got a ton of stuff for Landon, and it all is amazing, but there's definitely a few things that are a must-have that I could not have survived the last month and a half without.

1. Burp cloths.  I do laundry every other day or every three days, and we literally go through all 12 of our burp cloths so quickly. There's usually one in the bedroom, in the nursery, in our living room area, and in the diaper bag. At first, my husband and I were constantly calling out to one another, "Where is the burp cloth?" Because undoubtedly, Landon decided to burp or spit up the second we handed him over to the other person, and the burp cloth wasn't nearby, so we now have burp cloths handy everywhere!

2. Drying rack. We got the Boon grass drying rack, and I absolutely love it. I think it looks really cute in our kitchen, but also the flower and the twig are really great for hanging the nipples and other accessories to dry on. I feel like it makes our bottle situation look much better aesthetically than if we just had a plane drying rack on the counter. We've only given Landon a couple bottles when we had to go out of town for a wedding and for our anniversary date night, but for the breast pump accessories it's also great to dry those on as well.
Boon Grass Drying Rack

3. Wipeable Changing Pad. I got a wipeable changing pad from Target that has plastic center but the soft minky fabric on the sides, and I love it because you can wipe away any messes as you're changing your baby, but you don't need to constantly be washing a fabric changing pad. There's enough laundry already!
Circo Wipeable Changing Mat from Target

4. Click and Connect Car Seat & Stroller. This was definitely one of our priciest items on our registry, but it is so worth it to be able to pop Landon in his car seat into the car quickly or into the stroller. It just makes everything so much easier! He actually falls asleep really quickly in it,s o it is so nice to not wake him when you need to bring him into the house. When I took him to the mall, he fell asleep in the car seat in the car, so I could just lift him out, pop him into the stroller, and he stayed sleeping. This is definitely something I would say is worth the investment for a little one that you plan to take out and about frequently. 
The Graco Click & Connect Car Seat- doubles as a seat for outside to block the sun ;)

5. Kick & Play Piano Gym. Now this one isn't truly a must-have. I'm sure Landon would survive without this. But seen the joy on his face when he's playing with the piano and the dangling toys made this a must-have! I will probably purchase this for any of my friends baby showers coming up just because I think it is super affordable and great to see the baby be so stimulated and happy while gaining those motor skills and doing their muscle building activities. 
The Fisher Price Kick and Play Piano Gym

6. Vaseline. So Vaseline has been my best friend when it comes to changing Landon. The nurses at the hospital showed us how a light coating over his bottom after you're done cleaning them during a change makes the next change 100 times easier. I usually only have to use one to two wipes maximum just because one wipe I can quickly clean everything up. And since in the beginning  Landon absolutely hated diaper changes and would scream his head off bloody murder, being able to quickly and efficiently get him clean was essential. So rubbing a thin coating of Vaseline all over his bottom after every change definitely has made the diaper changing process much easier. I would highly recommend making sure you have a large tub of Vaseline on hand as well as cotton pads to easily wipe the Vaseline on. The baby Vaseline smells great too.
The Baby Scent Vaseline

7. Munchkin Latch Bottles. So Landon had to take a bottle within the first month because my husband was in a wedding party, and we had to be away from him for the reception. And since the wedding was about an hour away, it meant we had to spend about 12 hours away from Landon total. I think what I love most about these bottles is the shape of the actual nipple- it definitely resembles a breast, and I could tell even though it first Landon sort of made a weird face when we tested them on him, he took it pretty well. And the stage one nipple has a very slow leak or release, so I think that helps for the baby not to have nipple confusion. And it also helps the baby to not prefer the bottle because it is such a slow release, and they still have to work at it just like they do when they're on your actual breast. 

Munchkin Latch Bottles
8. Nuk Pacifiers. While I absolutely love how the Wubanub  binkies look, and Landon does use them, The Nuk orthodontic pacifier is definitely the one that stays put the best right now. Landon really doesn't like pacifiers and will often spit them out of his mouth pretty quickly. I think he definitely prefers boob compared to everything. Typical guy, haha. However, the Nuk orthodontic pacifier is what he can suck on the easiest and stays in his mouth the longest when we do need to pop the binky in. Even though we don't rely on them, if we're in a store or at a family gathering and Landon needs to be soothed and it's not exactly most convenient to whip out the boob, the Nuk works well. .
Landon & his Nuk binky 

 Any other moms have some great must-buys? Please comment & share your tips! :)

Monday, May 25, 2015

1 Month Postpartum Update

Happy 1 Month Buddy!
Weight: One month postpartum and I am 10 pounds over my pre-pregnancy weight, weighing in at 135 pounds. I still have a little bit of a tummy pooch, and I feel like my inner thighs and booty have a little bit extra too! I'm really optimistic that breast-feeding will continue to help me shed some of those remaining pounds, but it is hard because I am trying to keep my calorie intake rather high to make sure I'm producing enough breast milk.
1-month Postpartum: Still a little bit of a tummy!
Working out: Besides stroller walks, I haven't started working out again yet. I'm waiting until my six-week doctors appointment for the go-ahead but I'm definitely feeling antsy to start working out again. I miss my Pure Barre! I can't wait to do hot yoga again too since I wasn't able to do hot yoga while pregnant. I'm hoping somehow I find the time to go to my workout classes with the help of my husband and grandparents babysitting. That is probably the one thing I will not be shy about asking for help with. I know if I feel good about myself, it's better for Landon overall, and sets the example to stay healthy and physically active.

Help: Boy do we need it! haha But I've actually really not asked for help with much, which is probably really stupid of me. Lots of laundry and keeping the house straightened and the other random household chores I've mainly been taking on myself. I think with the next baby I will definitely be asking for more help, if I had one to watch and a new one to be taking care of at the same time. My mom has been great! She's brought over a bunch of dinners that she's made for us, and I really appreciate that. My mom and my grandma and grandpa have also both babysat a couple times just so I can run out and do some errands. We had a wedding to attend as well, and we had our first date night out for our one year wedding anniversary, so I really appreciated them coming to babysit Landon those two times. Also, we have a cleaning service that comes every two weeks, just to do the dusting and vacuuming mopping & overall upkeep of the entire house. I love it. It makes it wayyyy more manageable for the in-between time. 
I just love my little man.
Schedule: We have absolutely no sort of schedule yet. It's basically just feeding on demand whenever Landon cries, or figuring out what he needs and doing it. Every day has been completely different, even though I have been keeping all of the data on an app so I know exactly when he's had a feeding every single day, how many diapers he's gone through, etc. But still nothing that's any sort of a regular pattern as of yet.

Sleep: Getting adjusted to life with baby mainly means not sleeping for more than one hour consecutively. Everyone tells you sleep when baby sleeps but I have never been a napper my entire life so it is really difficult for me to nap during the day when Landon is sleeping. I also have this strange sense of needing to get housework done while my husband is at work because I feel like I'll look like I hadn't accomplished anything during the day if I slept with Landon was sleeping. I wish I could get over it, and I have sincerely tried to nap when Landon is sleeping, but it is literally impossible. I just cannot nap.
At least Landon sleeps well :)
Breastfeeding: I feel incredibly lucky that breast-feeding has come very naturally to both me and Landon. I know that it is something that often times is a huge struggle for many many moms. I really do owe it to the lactation nurses at the hospital because right after delivery, they got us to a great start and continued checking in to make sure that everything was going smoothly for both me and baby. It was painful at first though- yikes!! It probably stopped hurting after 2 1/2 weeks, so for the last week I have a felt just much better and more comfortable with breast-feeding in general. I was very, very sore in the beginning and liberally applied nipple balm after every single feeding just to help with the tenderness. I've started pumping and had a small supply in the freezer just because we had a wedding that was out of town. I was gone for about 12 hours, so I out of necessity had to make sure I had plenty of milk for the little guy. I over-prepared, pumping about 60 ounces.  However it is really hard for me to consistently pump just because Landon feeds so frequently that it's hard to have even a two-hour stretch where I could pump at the hour in between feedings, so that is something I'm definitely going to try to look into. I need some advice to figure out how I can be pumping more regularly to build up a supply in the freezer. It is just nice to have more freedom to be able to run errands or have date nights, etc. Also, I want to make sure I've got a good supply for when I go back to work, making sure that I have at least a days work stockpiled at home and my Gramma's so that when I am pumping at work, he's already got enough on hand for when my Gramma watches him.

Baby: Landon has gained over 2 pounds and grown over 3 inches! It's incredible to see our little guy slowly but surely get bigger. It's also eased my first-time mom worries about whether or not he was getting enough breastmilk and growing, so it's really reassuring to know that he's on track. He is one hungry baby!! I call him the "milk monster." He loves to eat, and I sort of feel like his first word very likely could be "boob" or "boobies" just because my husband and I are constantly saying, "Oh he wants the boob!" or "He wants boobies!" He also is a very talkative baby- he coos, gurgles, grunts, & makes a lot of noise all the time. Even at night he snores a bit. For the most part he's a happy little guy. He loves music, and he loves the sunshine. If it's a sunny day, you can just tell he lights up the second I take him into the nursery and he feels the sun on his face through the window when I lay him on the changing table. He also loves going outside for walks or even when I just take him outside on our back patio for my coffee in the morning. Or in the afternoon I'll take him on our front porch and read with him, and he just instantly relaxes the second we step outside. 

Mr. Sunshine 
Love Life: Since it's only one month, there is no sort of monkey business going on yet. I'm waiting until I get clearance from the doctor for that. I do have such a deeper bond and connection to my husband having gone through the birth experience, and every day looking at Landon and feeling such a sense of pride that we made this incredible human together. That has brought me so close to him. However, lack of sleep and just feeling on call 24/7, especially since he's gone back to work, I would be lying if I didn't say I have a slight bit of resentment that he gets a break. It feels like he gets to escape during the day. Not that I feel like Landon is a chore or that I don't want to be with Landon, because when I'm not with Landon I FREAK OUT, and I feel an incredible urge to always be with Landon. But there are moments of sheer exhaustion when I am in zombie cow milk giver mode that I would just love a 30 minute break. I think those are the times that I can be difficult or extremely stressed or short tempered with my husband, and I do feel guilty about that. We're trying to figure out a schedule or a division of responsibilities that prevents me from feeling that way. We don't have it all figured out quite yet, but we're trying to figure out what will work best for us. And I love him for trying and putting up with me when I'm crazy and cranky. 

Our 1-year Wedding Anniversary Date
Hardest Part: I think for me the hardest part has been feeling like I am not as intellectually stimulated as I normally am. I feel like when I was at work every day there was a new challenge or something I had to think critically about evaluated or make a tough decision. And while being a mom is definitely tough and challenging, I think it's more physically exhausting and draining- especially breast-feeding. It often feels like I'm just on autopilot, and I am a cow who is just there to pump out milk. And since my husband has gone back to work, unless I have visitors, there's no sort of adult conversation that occurs during the day, so that can get lonely and make me feel very unlike myself.

Best part: I absolutely love getting to spend so much time with my baby. I am in absolute denial that July 20 will ever come, and then I will have to go back to work, because I really truly relish every minute that I get to cuddle, snuggle, read, and do all sorts of activities with Landon. I absolutely love getting to nurture him, teach him things, sing to him, ask questions, be silly, and see his reactions. Just watching him grow- it's amazing how every single week he's gotten more and more alert, and you can just tell he's absorbing so much every single day. 
I just love being Landon's mommy <3

Sunday, May 24, 2015

Landon's Birth Story

Landon's Birth Story
It's been over a month, and I'm finally getting to writing your birth story. You sure have kept Mommy busy with lots of feedings about every 90 minutes- you're a milk monster! And whenever you are sleeping, Mommy never wants to put you down, and neither do you. You're a cuddle bug. However, since Daddy loves snuggle time with you too, Mommy is finally taking a break to blog.

I went into actual labor around 5:30 pm on Sunday, April 19th. Daddy, Auntie Kali, and I all ordered Bob Evans for dinner, and I started having real contractions en route to pick it up. Mommy got the steak and egg platter, so she had a protein-packed last meal before your arrival. I'd been having some Braxton Hicks contractions, but I could instantly tell something about these were different. It was sort of like an ocean wave- it started coming up, hit a high point, and then receded. Mommy turned to Daddy right away and said, "These feel different. I think this might be it."

We came home, and all ate. Auntie Kali and I put on Kardashians to distract me, and I bounced away on the birth ball Daddy got for me. At my last appointment I was already 3 cm dilated, and the doctor told me to call the hospital if my water broke or if I was having contractions 5 minutes apart for a minute in length. Mommy's plan was to have a natural birth, so I was trying to stay at home as long as I could possibly stand it. By 9:30, I was having contractions about every 4 minutes, each lasting around a minute. They were definitely intensifying, and Daddy was a great coach reminding me to breathe and encouraging me. By 10:30, my contractions were 3 minutes apart, each lasting a minute, so I called the hospital, and the nurse on call said to come in.

On the way to the hospital, my contractions intensified even more. I had to have Daddy stop every time I had a contraction because if he hit a bump or pot hole, I was writhing in pain. In the ER parking lot, I had a contraction as we parked, and the car door unlocked automatically and bumped my arm and I shrieked in pain. It was the craziest, out-of-body experience where literally every muscle in my body felt clenched and tightened, so even the littlest thing felt extremely painful.
Birthing socks
When we checked in to the triage unit for the maternity ward, the nurse checked how far dilated I was, and I was still at 3 cm. She had me and Daddy walk the hall for an hour. My contractions got worse and even closer together, coming about every 2 minutes. Daddy was even counting down, they were coming on cue. However, at the end of the hour, I was still only at 3 cm dilated. The nurse called in the doctor, and we were shocked when she told us to go home. "How will I know to come back if my water doesn't break?" I asked, knowing I wouldn't be able to check myself to see how far dilated I could be. She couldn't give me an answer, and just repeated that we should go home.

This threw me for a total loop. So far, I'd mentally prepared myself for a lot of pain, but now I was scared that if I went home and progressed quickly, I wouldn't make it back to the hospital. We didn't really know what else we could do though, so Daddy and I drove home.

On the way home, I was bawling. I was increasingly in so much more pain. Daddy had to keep stopping every contraction. Then at one point a truck was blocking the road, and I lost it. "I don't think I can do this naturally any more," I cried to him. However, Daddy had been totally supportive of however I wanted the birth to be from the beginning. We'd learned all of the options, and he told me that he trusted me to know my body and whatever I needed or could handle.

We got home around 1:00 AM and laid in bed. The contractions were still every 2 minutes apart, and the pain just kept getting worse. Around 2:30, I had such a strong contraction I didn't realize it at the time, but my water broke in bed along with passing an extremely large blood clot (larger than my hand). We had no idea if this was normal or not, as this was not something that was in any of the classes, apps, or baby books we'd read. I was terrified something was wrong. Adam being a great coach reassured me that I would be okay, and drew me a bath. However, on the way to the tub, I started vomiting. The mixture of intense pain and fear of what had just happened made me so sick. I eventually made it to the tub, which offered brief comfort. By 3:00 AM, we decided to go back to the hospital.

At the triage check in, the nurse checked me again. I was almost 7 cm dilated. They admitted us, and I immediately asked for the epidural. At this point, I was so traumatized by being sent home and exhausted from the pain, I could not fathom having to push out the baby without any rest or pain relief. Plus, the OCD in me was so upset that I'd basically ruined the house that I had left immaculate for the baby, knowing that there was blood, vomit, etc. all over our bedroom, hallway, and bathroom. The totally unglamorous reality of child birth. I needed drugs.

They took Daddy and me to a wonderful birthing room. He had to leave the room during my epidural, which lasted about 30 minutes for the total procedure. By 5:00 AM, it was finished, and I morphed into an  entirely different person. The pain was completely gone, I suddenly had my mental sanity back, and I could relax and smile and feel excited about meeting you. I could sense how relieved Daddy was too when he returned, as I'm sure it was scary for him to stay so composed when I was in such incredible pain for those hours.
All smiles after the epidural

My mom, your Gramma LoLo, and sister, your Auntie Kali, arrived to the hospital around 6:00 AM. My mom was shocked to see me smiling and relaxed, as she had delivered both me and my sister naturally and knew my birth plan. "I feel great," I told her. "I just can't wait to meet him!"
Mom and sister cheering us on!
The nurses encouraged both Daddy and I to take a nap and rest up before pushing time. We napped for a few hours, visited with LoLo and Kali, and by 12:00 noon I had dilated to 10 centimeters. We were so close to meeting you, Landon!

It was just the nurse and Daddy in the room when I told her I felt a lot of pressure in my lower back. She told me it takes most first timers one to three hours to push, and gave me a play-by-play on how to properly push. Then she asked Daddy to grab my leg and told me to try what she had just explained to me.This was not our plan, as we decided Daddy would stay up by my shoulders, but I figured this would likely take awhile anyways. Boy, was I wrong. On my second push, Daddy exclaimed, "You can see the head!"  The nurse was astonished, and rushed to go get the doctors and the rest of the delivery nurse team. Four pushes later, you joined our world at 12:30 PM. This was the best moment of my life.
Best moment of my life
You came out with a strong, hearty cry. It was the most beautiful sound I've ever heard. The doctor immediately laid you on my chest, and you immediately stopped crying and curled into me because you just knew who I was. You just knew I was your Mommy. I couldn't help but cry (even writing this part, I'm bawling, haha). I've never been more proud or more in awe in my life. You were perfect and beautiful- 10 fingers and 10 toes, and your complexion was so clear and your skin was so soft. From all the baby books and apps, I was expecting you to look a little messy or cheesy or blotchy, but you were literally like a movie baby. It was so surreal. There is no doubt in my mind God exists after watching your birth. It was such a miracle to see your life begin right there. Happy Birthday, Baby! April 20th will forever be the greatest day of my life.

Daddy cut your umbilical cord (which has turned into the cutest little innie belly button). You were 7 lbs, 5 oz, and 18 3/4 inches long with strawberry blond hair and greenish eyes. You are so handsome. I cannot believe you're ours! Daddy and I said, you are our greatest accomplishment.
Happy Birthday!
While I am a little disappointed I wasn't able to have a completely natural childbirth and have endless respect for those that do, I will say for future births, I will get the epidural again. I tore, and I know how it really hurt for weeks afterwards. I can't imagine how it would feel getting stitched up for a half hour after delivery without the epidural. Plus, Daddy and I got to enjoy the birth together. I will never take back a second of the pain of this experience. We got you, Landon Brian, and I couldn't have asked for a better more beautiful baby boy. I thank God every day since for blessing us with you baby and this healthy birth.
Our Beautiful Baby Boy

Friday, May 1, 2015

What to Buy for a Breastfeeding Bedside Box

I thought I was prepared for everything when it came to bringing baby home, but I realized within the first 24 hours of being home I was not prepared for breastfeeding. And since you'll be breastfeeding for what can feel like every hour of the day, especially if your little one cluster feeds like Landon, you'll wish you had this made beforehand. It's not fun gathering things from around your house or realizing you need stuff from the store when you're very sore and recovering from delivery. Make this in advance if you can!! This also helped me adjust to breastfeeding very quickly. I have breastfeeding boxes next to my bed, by the rocker in his nursery, and downstairs next to the couch. This way, no matter where I'm feeding him (which is CONSTANTLY- he's a milk monster!) I have supplies at hand, since at least one is always occupied with baby boy.

Here are the things I have at every nursing station.

  • Water: You need to drink a TON to keep your milk supply up, and I swear, I get dry mouth as soon as Landon latches. I chug at least one  bottle of water every time I nurse. I keep bottles or the jug the hospital gave me at every station.
  • Nipple Balm: This stuff is magical. Especially that first week when you feel like your nipples might fall off after a feeding. I have both Boob Ease by Bamboobies and the Honest Co. Nipple Balm, and I'd recommend either. Both are organic as well. I apply after each feeding, and after 10 days, feedings aren't hurting anymore. These are more buttery in consistency, and are very smooth and not as sticky as Lansinoh. The Lansinoh still works and is cheaper (I have it at one station), but just not as silky smooth to rub on, and my fingers get really sticky after using it, and I can't always run to wash my hands, whereas the Boob Ease or Honest Co. balm rubs off easily on a burp cloth.  
  • Tissues: For some reason, every time I breast feed, I feel like my nose is running. This helps to take care of the sniffles. Or if you happen to have one of those lovely, postpartum hormonal cries, you're prepared.
  • Medication/Vitamins: You might be so busy and overwhelmed those first few days, you forget to take your pain meds or your prenatals, both of which you will need to help ease your recovery and ensure your baby is getting the nutrients he needs from breastfeeding. It's easy for me to pop my Motrin or my prenatal while I am sitting there for a feeding, and since I have time to check the time for when I should be taking another pain pill. 
  • Lip Balm: Same as the strange sniffles, I feel my lips are extremely chapped at every feedings, so it is great to have lip balm on hand. Especially so I have soft lips to kiss baby with after each feeding. xo 
  • Reading Material: Magazines, baby care books, or my cell phone- anything to help pass the time, since you will start to feel like all you're doing is putting your kid on your boob. This helps me feel less like a cow and more like an intellectual human being. 
  • Breast Pads: I don't always use these- it depends on what I'm wearing. But if I'm using them I'll change these out after a feeding. I got the resusable ones, and they get itchy after a few feedings, so I keep them handy to change them out. 
  • Burp Cloths: Keep at least one at every station. You never know when your little one may need to be burped or projectile vomit all over that cute outfit you just dressed them in. 
  • Cell Phone App/Last Feeding Time: With everything in my brain that I have to do to take care of baby, I would never remember the time of the last feeding or which side I ended on. I made a dry erase frame to have the time and the side, but I also downloaded an app called BabyNursing. I prefer the app just so I can keep track on the go, but you'll definitely need something, especially at the beginning so you don't overuse one nipple. Trust me. Plus, you might want your phone to catch some of those adorable faces your baby makes after a feeding before falling into a milk coma. :)
Happy Breastfeeding! :)

These are the items that have helped me adjust to breastfeeding my little one. If you have any other tips or advice, let me know!

Thursday, April 30, 2015

Meet My Baby!

Meet my baby!

I am proud to introduce Landon Brian Koehler. Our son was born on his actual due date- Monday, April 20th, 2015 at 12:30 in the afternoon. Baby boy was 7 pounds and 5 ounces and 18 3/4 inches long. He has strawberry blond hair and greenish gray eyes. He has 10 tiny fingers and 10 little toes, and is cute as a button. He looks a bit like Daddy and Mommy. He's our angel- we're convinced this little miracle is the greatest blessing God could ever give us. Mommy is so in love with him. And Daddy has never been prouder. We love you, Landon! Welcome to the world! 
Happy Birthday, Landon!

Thursday, April 16, 2015

The Waiting Game

Hi Baby Boy!

I cannot believe we are within DAYS of getting to meet you in person. This pregnancy has truly flown thanks to a busy work schedule, the holidays, and lots of travel. And, I've got to thank God for giving me a healthy, very uneventful pregnancy for the most part. Now all we've got to do is this labor thing....

Mommy has been pretty patient so far, but she's starting to get very antsy! I keep on saying to you everyday, "Whenever you're ready baby boy, we're ready for you!" But can I say we're DEFINITELY READY now????!!!!   Come on out!

Mommy and Daddy went on a walk to the lake with Colie yesterday, and boy, we were comical. It was not a walk for Mommy. It was a waddle. You have dropped, and by dropped I mean hanging low in there. I swear if I do the splits or sneeze you might shoot out like a rocket! Haha!  A girl who jogged past us even started laughing; I'm waddling, Daddy is walking Colie, and Colie is just bouncing along, tongue hanging out, happy as a clam to be on a walk. The jogger was definitely laughing at me and my ridiculous waddle.
Mommy & Daddy- 39 weeks and a few days!
Daddy is also trying to figure out ways to get you to come out (besides making Mommy waddle down the block). He bought Mommy one of those big bouncy balls to sit and bounce on.

He's also trying food tricks. On Tuesday night, he got Mommy Buffalo Wild Wings.  On Wednesday night, he got Mommy tacos from Barrio.We thought spicy food might do the trick! This morning Mommy ate pineapple, as that is supposed to have a natural effect to induce labor. Tonight we're going to get Italian- we read garlic, balsamic vinegar, and eggplant can do the trick, so Mommy will be getting a salad with oil and balsamic vinegar and eggplant Parmesan for dinner. Mommy also drank some raspberry tea this afternoon. We're trying all these foods to see!

Last night I had a horrible contraction after our walk. It was so bad, I fell to my knees and even got teary eyed. I feel like when that starts happening again is when we'll definitely have to go to the hospital. So far, that's been the worst one though.

I've been having regular contractions for the last 24 hours- anywhere from three to five contractions an hour. However, they'll go away after a few hours. I guess my body is definitely in practice labor. My boss told me to stay home from work today, so I bounced on the ball for an hour while I worked. I also tried the breast pump for 10 minutes, since I heard that's a way to jump start contractions. We might go for another walk in a little bit too. We're trying everything, so who knows what actually works if anything does! 
Me & You- 39 weeks and 3 days

Needless to say, we'll just have to keep waiting for you! But we're SO ready. Beyond excited to meet you, Little One. I can't wait to hold you and kiss you. We can do this labor thing. I know we can. Whenever you're ready!

Love you,

Mommy xoxo

Monday, April 13, 2015

39 Week Bumpdate

39 Week Bump Shot
How far along?  39 weeks- 9 months- 3rd trimester  ALMOST THERE!!!
Total weight gain: 150 lbs, down 1 lbs from last week, has to be from all the nesting and walking I've been doing... puts me at 25 lbs total. Little One is the size of a watermelon, and this watermelon sure feels ready to POP! 
Maternity clothes: Yes- this dress is from ASOS and one of my favorite maternity dresses I own! I love the colors and the print, and think the cut is very flattering for a prego mama, with a low back too. 
Stretch marks? Thankfully, no! I ran out of my Palmer's this morning- ahhh!! So I added a bit of extra lotion to that last squirt of Palmer's to stretch it out. Feeling incredibly lucky! 
Sleep: It has gotten better. I think I've been so tuckered out from nesting, I zonk out right away, but I have been having spells in the middle of the night where I lay awake for a bit, but then I fall into a really deep sleep. Once my alarm is going off, I'm having crazy dreams that I don't want to wake up from- I want to know what's going to happen in them!! haha
Best moment this week: Getting to go on a movie date with my husband on Friday night was so nice. We know it might be our very last one for awhile. I also went for a dog walk with my best friend Deena on Sunday. The weather was so beautiful- high 60's and sunny. It was amazing to be outside in the sunshine. When I got home, Adam and I made a Home Depot run, and he got so much done in the yard (I only supervised, haha). He laid down all our mulch, planted flowers, and seeded the entire yard, so Landon will have lots of plushy grass to lay on this summer. Inside, I continued the nesting by doing laundry, cleaning out the basement, cleaning out the garage, and organizing a bunch of closets and cupboards and drawers. The house is even more ready for Landon! 
Movement:  Yes- my poor boy has to be so squished in there. He feels HUGE, but I swear my belly can't stretch anymore, so he's got to be so tight in there. I still relish every wiggle and roll though. I love having him in there. 
39 weeks- still working out
(though walking is pretty low-intensity, it still feels great to move around as much as possible!)

Miss anything? Drinking. Warm weather makes me want to sit outside and sip on a nice, cold adult beverage. Soon enough though! :)
Food cravings: Breakfast sandwiches- I had to stop this morning and get the bacon, egg, and gouda sandwich from Starbucks. I love that one! Bananas and smoothies- I just love fruit in general this whole pregnancy, and yesterday I polished off an entire king size Pay Day bar- YUMMO! 
Anything making you queasy or sick? Still seafood.
Gender: Boy <3  
Labor signs: Lots more cramping and lightning crotch. OUCH!! He's dropped for sure- the doctor confirmed it. She also confirmed I'm effaced, and 1-2 centimeters dilated, so she said to be ready at anytime. Also, TMI, but there's been uhh...mucus plug loss and changes in discharge. My back has also been hurting, but I don't know if that's labor signs or just soreness from all of the nesting. Soon enough the real thing will happen- eek!!!!
Symptoms: Heartburn, frequent urination, abdominal aches and pains, cramping, Braxton Hicks, backache, lightning crotch, and shortness of breath (at night), lactation, increased thirst, nesting
Belly button in or out? Still completely popped out- so weird. 
Wedding rings on or off? Still on! :)
Happy or moody most of the time: Very happy. I have to say, the thought of labor is getting a little daunting, but I know he has to come out- there's no turning back now! So I think all the nesting and finishing up work has been a great way to feel productive and keep my mind off getting freaked out about labor. And I know at the end, I'll get to hold this Little Man. Can't believe that it's been 39 weeks. SO CLOSE!!!  Love you, baby boy. Can't wait to introduce you to the world. <3 xoxo

Monday, April 6, 2015

38 Week Bumpdate

38 Week Bump Shot
How far along?  38 weeks- 9 months- 3rd trimester  HOME STRETCH!!!
Total weight gain: 151 lbs, up 1 lbs from last week... puts me at 26 lbs and feeling HUGE! 
Maternity clothes: Yes and No. The top is non-maternity from Limited (just a silk blouse) The bottoms are Destination Maternity jean jeggings- the over-the-belly kind, so comfy! I truly don't know how I'll go back to non-maternity jeans/leggings! 
Stretch marks? Thankfully, no! Using Palmer's twice a day, every day! Feeling so lucky! 
Sleep: Perhaps I've gotten used to not being comfortable, but I have been able to fall asleep faster. And I still get up to pee at least 5 times. I've been getting up before my alarm though, which is always frustrating in a way. Today I woke up a half hour early, made a crock pot meal and cleaned out the fridge before work! Nesting anyone??!
Best moment this week: We had a really successful Principal Interview day at work on Thursday, so it was great to kick off a long Easter Weekend on a high note from work. Friday was a pamper day- I slept in, used a gift card from our wedding for a prenatal massage, mani, and pedi. Then Saturday we celebrated Easter with my Dad, and got him a new iPhone 6 plus so he can Facetime and get videos and pictures of the baby. He's been using the same flip phone since I was in high school, and it was so funny to see him realize how awesome the technology is on phones now. He was blown away! It was so cute. On Sunday, we celebrated Easter with lunch with my husband's side of the family, and dinner at my Grammas. Always a little stressful to drive around a bunch of places, but it's so nice to see everyone. Feels like we never get to see family as often as we'd like! 
Movement:  Yes- even though I felt last week his movement had slowed, today he's been a wild child. He's really squirming in there- I feel bad if he's uncomfortable because it's got to be a tight squeeze these days. He's moving his butt from side to side all day, and throwing his feet and hands into my sides, which is sort of hurting now, but I don't even want to complain about it because I love feeling him move so much. It's a constantly reminder he's our little miracle in there. 
Miss anything?  Margaritas- my friend Steph posted a pic on Instagram, and they looked SO GOOD! I also miss shopping. I went to the mall to use some coupons that were about to expire this weekend, and I miss shopping for cute work clothes. Can't wait to get my workout on and get back into pre-baby shape! 
Food cravings: Salad- I wanted a crisp, crunchy salad so bad this weekend, and luckily got to indulge when we got food with my dad on Saturday! And I cannot drink enough lemonade. I also am craving pop or anything carbonated, but can't really indulge in that one. I got some of the best oranges I've ever tasted from the grocery store last week, so I'm not sure that it's really a craving, or just because they taste so good. And my Easter basket was awesome because I've been craving chocolate too. (Adam and I always exchange one, because he is a candy FREAK and will take any excuse to buy a boatload of candy! haha!) 
Anything making you queasy or sick? Still seafood. Gross.  
Unexpected Ultrasound- Sneak Peek of our Boy! <3
Gender: Our very unexpected ultrasound confirmed it- he's definitely still a BOY! 
Labor signs: Definite cramping and Braxton-Hicks. Nesting like crazy. Also, not sure if this means labor, but I've had some, ummm, lacation happening....nuts! Lots of back pain as well. Hopefully this won't mean back labor- I've heard that's horribly painful, but then again, all labor has got to be! No turning back at this point....
Symptoms: Heartburn, frequent urination, abdominal aches and pains, cramping, Braxton Hicks, backache, lightning crotch, and shortness of breath (at night), lactation, increased thirst
Belly button in or out? Still completely popped out- and still grosses me out! It's like a third nipple- haha!
Wedding rings on or off? Still on! :)
Happy or moody most of the time: Happy, happy, happy. I am loving being pregnant, and truly relishing these last two weeks. 14 days- ready or not! But definitely feeling more ready. We can't wait to meet you, sweet boy!! <3 

Monday, March 30, 2015

37 Week Bumpdate

37 Week Bump Shot - Full Term!
How far along?  37 weeks- 9 months- 3rd trimester  & officially "full term"
Total weight gain: 150 lbs, up 1 lbs from last week... puts me at 25 lbs total so far. Feeling HUGE! 
Maternity clothes: Yes- sweater is from Destination Maternity and the dress pants are from Jessica Simpson's maternity line. Same ones as last week. They are over the belly and seriously SO comfy. Went all black today to try to feel "slimmer" too, haha. 
Stretch marks? Still nothing and swearing by using Palmer's every day! Feeling so lucky! 
Sleep: Even though sleep has been tough in general for weeks, this week I'm getting up to pee way more, but I've actually been sleeping a lot longer. Feel like my body must be resting up for the labor that's to come!
Best moment this week: The entire weekend. Adam and I had a date night on Friday after work. It was so nice to have a great meal just us. We went to Brio- I had steak and a wedge salad, and he got crab and lobster crusted salmon, so we were both happy campers. Then I went to brunch with my high school girlfriends- Brigitte, Stephanie, Melanie - who is pregnant too, 26 weeks along, and Meghan. It was great catching up with all of them. We never get to see each other enough with our busy work and home lives, so getting to see them is great and always feels like we picked up right where we left off. It's also nice to have another one of my best friends going through their first pregnancy at the same time, to talk about all the crazy symptoms and stuff. Melanie's waiting to find out the gender, and her due date is June 30th- I just can't wait to find out if she's having a boy or girl! (I'm guessing girl.)  I feel lucky to have that group of friends still. And brunch was delicious- we went to Market in Rocky River, which I've been dying to try, and it was so worth it! You figure it has to be good if you need reservations for brunch. Finally, we had Sunday dinner at my mom's, and she spoiled us with City Chicken, one of my favorite homemade dinners of all time. She had all the fix ins- biscuits, gravy, mashed potatoes, broccoli, greens and bacon, and gelato with fresh berries for dessert. SO YUMMY! 
Me & Melanie (26 weeks)
The Bumps @ Brunch - Prego Best Friends!
Movement:  Yes- he's definitely moving his butt from side to side, and still some little kicks and punches from time to time. He moves when I sing to him too, which is so cool. 
Miss anything?  Wearing heels- now that the snow is melted, I want to wear some of my really cute spring heels, but don't want to risk swelling or falling! Mimosas at brunch- I was jealous of the three girls that could drink them! And sleeping on my tummy. Since I never am able to get comfy at night, it will be great to sleep on my tummy again. 
Food cravings: Steak, gelato w/ berries (my mom got me hooked on that stuff!), and peanut butter eggs- I want my Easter basket early, lol!
Anything making you queasy or sick? Still seafood. Gross.  
Gender: Still BOY! 
Labor signs: Braxton Hicks and cramping. Really bad lightning crotch this week. One time I even screamed in the kitchen and scared poor Adam pretty bad, but it hurt so bad! My doctor also checked me again this morning, and we're making some progress. He's dropped lower than he was last week (head is still down too- phew!), and I've started effacing. I still am not dilated though. 
Symptoms: Heartburn, frequent urination, abdominal aches and pains, cramping, Braxton Hicks, backache, lightning crotch, and shortness of breath (at night)
Belly button in or out? Still completely popped out- and still grosses me out! 
Wedding rings on or off? Still on! yay! 
Happy or moody most of the time: Happy. This weekend was wonderful, and I'm just can't believe how fast this pregnancy has gone, and how close we are to meeting Landon. <3   21 days or bust (literally, haha)!

Monday, March 23, 2015

36 Week Bumpdate

36 Week Bump Shot- Officially in the 9th month!

How far along?  36 weeks- 9 MONTHS!!! WOWZA- 3rd trimester  
Total weight gain: 149 lbs, up 1 lbs from last week... puts me at 24 lbs total so far. However, I swear my belly has grown into a full-size beach ball! This bump is HUGE!
Maternity clothes: Wearing non-maternity tops actually (9 months and who would have thought?) The seafoam green shirt is one of the button-ups from Express, the leopard sweater is from Target and I just put a belt around it, and the dress pants are maternity- from Jessica Simpson's maternity line. They are over the belly and SO comfy- I love these work maternity pants! Must-buy for working mamas! 
Stretch marks? Still nothing and still using Palmer's every day! Feeling so lucky! 
Sleep: Same as it's been- so tough due to heartburn and just aches and pains all over. 
Best moment this week: I got to celebrate two of my best friends' birthdays, and it's always great to spend time catching up with girlfriends. We also went to an awesome brunch with two other couples on Sunday, so it was great catching up with them too! However, one of the best moments happened Monday at work in the morning. At our HR team meeting, the team had made a diaper airplane, and had cupcakes too! It was very sweet that they did something for the baby. I was very touched. 
Diaper Plan for Landon from my work- so cute! 
Miss anything?  Mimosas again! At brunch, they had the cutest mimosas with real flower garnishes- I wanted one so bad!! 
Movement:  Yes- some of the girls at work were feeling him today because he was definitely flopping around after the sugar rush from the cupcakes! They were so excited to feel him move. 
Food cravings: Still popsicles, eggs, and omelets (why I loved brunch so much), and Entemann's cheese kuchen. I ate a whole one over the weekend- I don't know how I only gained one pound! haha 
Anything making you queasy or sick? Still seafood. Gross.  
Gender: Still BOY! 
Labor signs: Nesting a ton. We set up so much stuff around the house for Landon this weekend, and I want everything in perfect order, cleaned up, and in it's place. I cleaned out all the cupboards in the kitchen and some of the storage bins/baskets around the house. And I'm definitely feeling Braxton Hicks more regularly, but obviously nothing that's long lasting or every few minutes. 
Symptoms: Heartburn, frequent urination, backache, abdominal cramping and pain, Braxton Hicks
Belly button in or out? It's totally popped out and I've even had to wear a band-aid over it a few times so it doesn't look like a third nipple, haha! 
Wedding rings on or off? Still on thankfully! 
Happy or moody most of the time: Happy. Overjoyed actually. This has been a great start to the 9th month. I feel so at peace with him being so close to joining us. Thrilled to meet you Little Man!!! 

Sunday, March 22, 2015

Setting Up the Baby Gear

Hi Little One,

Mommy and Daddy have had a very busy weekend getting set up for you. Mommy is definitely nesting, and Daddy sort of is too! Mommy cleaned out all the kitchen cupboards and the fridge. She also cleaned out all the baskets and coat hangers around the house, moving some winter gear up to the attic. Daddy got a bunch of stuff at Home Depot to make the yard nice for your arrival too! We want our house nice and ready for you.
You've already got your own basket for toys in our family room 
We have gotten rid of so much furniture to make space for your stuff- the coffee table, our wine rack and bar, and three end tables (we'd rather not have them out since you could bang your forehead on those sharp corners). However, we also got some new storage baskets and shelves to better store your things. Who would have thought such a little person would need so many things! But we're excited to welcome you home.

Mommy set up your Boon Grass for your bottles to dry on. This was one of Daddy's favorite presents we got from our shower.
Boon grass bottle drying station
Daddy and Mommy also put together your Snuggapuppy Suite! You will have plenty of options when it comes to laying, rocking, swinging, and napping around the house.
Snuggapuppy Bouncer

Snuggapuppy Rock and Play

Snuggapuppy Swing

We also struggled for over an hour to put together your pack and play. But, we persevered and it is finally up and all stocked with diapers, wipes, hand sanitizer, burp cloths, and blankets so we can change you and keep you all comfy on the first floor if necessary. 
Pack and Play

We feel so blessed to have received all these wonderful gifts for you at our shower. It's so exciting to have them all set up and know that in less than 1 month, you'll be occupying them in the flesh!

Keep growing big and strong in there Landon. I can tell you are getting much bigger, and I'm getting more and more Braxton Hicks every day. But I can withstand any of those minor aches and pains to make sure you're big enough and strong enough in there before you come out. Keep growing buddy! We'll play and cuddle a ton once you're out.

Love you so much,

Mommy xoxo