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Technically my fourth pregnancy.  I know I haven’t written about anything in forever, much less the fact that we are expecting another little baby bundle in approximately 71 days, give or take a couple weeks.  So to recap, we found out on April 24, 2016 that I was pregnant again.  I was in definite disbelief, as I have been with the others, and elated, of course!  This one was definitely a bit more of a surprise because March and April were crazy months.  In March the boys and I went to Pennsylvania with my mom for a weekend to visit our Aunt Irene and then things at home just seemed a bit busy so trying to have another baby wasn’t exactly on the forefront, accompanied with the fact that I had run out of ovulation strips and didn’t feel like buying more for that cycle.  We actually talked about it and said we would continue to “try” that month but we weren’t too concerned because then we would have a Christmas baby.  Who got the last laugh there?!  Ha!  My due date is January 6, 2017 but I am somewhat expecting this baby to come at least a little early, based on when I had the boys.  I’m hoping for anywhere after 37 weeks and before 42 weeks of course.  Since I wasn’t exactly sure of when we conceived I did go to a center for an early pregnancy ultrasound and found I was 5 weeks and 6 days at that appointment.  It was of course wonderful to see the baby in the uterus and to see the heart flickering away.  I contacted Brenda about being our midwife again and got the process started with my prenatal labs.  This time around I am taking Baby & Me whole food vitamins, 365 brand Calcium and Magnesium 2:1 ratio, D3+K2, and Nordic Naturals prenatal DHA.  At this point in my pregnancy I am also drinking my NORA tea mostly daily, as well as have just started on some liquid chlorophyll to help boost my iron levels a bit.  I started enjoying crunching on ice a few weeks ago and knew something was up.  As well as I did my gestational diabetes testing with my glucometer for a few weeks and everything was good there.

We had our 20 week ultrasound back at the end of July and everything looked great from what they could tell, so we are praising God for that!  We are not finding out the gender again this time around, although for me I feel like it has been a bit more challenging not knowing.  Not because I want to plan anything but because Doug really wants a girl, and I would like a girl too, although of course we will be more than thrilled with whomever God adds to our family!  I am allowing myself to dream just a bit of having a little girl, while I still have the mystery of time before he or she arrives.  As for the boys, Ryne first said he wanted a “girl Benny”, then he said he wanted another “Benny”, and now he just doesn’t want another baby at all.  Benjamin of course “knows” there is a baby in my belly and he likes when he sees other babies but obviously he has NO real clue of what is to come!

This pregnancy as a whole has been pretty uneventful and smooth.  There are a few slight differences:

  • placenta is anterior rather than posterior like with both the boys.
  • a bit more hormonal type acne on my face here and there throughout the pregnancy
  • more fatigued in the first trimester, but I’m also chasing two little ones around this time
  • got my first gray hair a couple weeks ago…may not be pregnancy related, but still
  • less pubic symphysis discomfort, although there is still some present
  • and of course, NO cyst this time around!!  Praise God!
  • I did have a day where I woke up to a bit of red blood in the toilet around 8 weeks and then light brown spotting for a few days afterward, but everything is fine

The pregnancy really is going by a bit quick and despite not setting up a nursery or buying much of anything this time around, here is a list of things I thought of that I would like to accomplish before baby arrives:

  • make birth affirmations banner
  • complete hypnobabies and be consistent about listening to my tracks daily
  • order birth kit
  • order Rhogam shot
  • order vitamin K
  • strip cloth diapers
  • accomplish Benjamin’s birthday and Thanksgiving
  • get some newborn baby clothes out of the storage bins
  • clean and organize the laundry room
  • clean the boys’ and playroom closets
  • clean and organize our closet
  • purge stuff from the house in general
  • prep freezer meals

So here’s the standard update I will TRY my hardest to do each week until this little one is born!  Don’t hold me to that, though!! ūüôā  I am praying with this little one that he or she will stay comfortable until at least December 16, which is 37 weeks exactly.  Of course a bit longer would be preferred, but NO earlier!  I’m doing all I can to stay healthy and encourage my body in the ways I know how!

How Far Along?  30 Weeks tomorrow, October 28, 2016!

Total Weight Gain?  Okay, so as similar with my previous pregnancies, I am putting on a good bit of weight, despite efforts to exercise and eat right.  I will admit my eating has probably been a bit worse this time throughout, but Doug and I both want to do all we can to be as healthy as possible these last weeks before baby arrives.  Up to this point I believe I have gained about 31 pounds.  This next line is a quote from my 27 week blog with Benjamin’s pregnancy: “Yes, I know, that sounds insane probably, considering that it is recommended for most women to gain 25-35 during their entire pregnancy and here I am at the end of my second trimester having already reached that mark…BUT I gained about 40 pounds with Ryne and started off both that pregnancy and this one underweight for my height.  The weight gain both pregnancies has been normal, steady, and perfectly fine for my body.” I told myself at the beginning of this pregnancy that I wanted to gain less weight and be healthier and more in shape, BUT with the scorching summer months keeping us from our daily walks most days and with the overall fatigue and busy-ness of having two little ones, it just hasn’t panned out the way I hoped.  That being said, I am still pretty active and have been going to the gym here and there to do some weights and swimming laps.  We are also doing our daily walks again most days with the cooler weather, and I am going on hikes with the boys weekly.  I need and want to cut out sugar again.  Am planning to do another sugar detox in November!  That honestly should help level out some of the weight gain as well.

Maternity Clothes? Of course I’ve been in maternity clothes since basically the beginning!  I dread the cold weather a bit, even though I want it to be here, because as with both other pregnancies, I do not like pants or waistbands pressing on my lower belly at all.  Probably because I carry my pregnant belly so low and I just can’t stand it.  So I got a couple pair of leggings that are comfortable enough for now, but I haven’t really been able to get comfortable in any jeans or other pants this time around.  I am mostly wearing a couple skirts I’ve got along with some dresses.

Stretch Marks? Another quote from my 27 week post from Benjamin’s pregnancy: “I got so many stretch marks with Ryne that I haven’t even been concerned this time around about going to the trouble to put anything on my belly to attempt to prevent or lessen them.  I’m not really a lotion kind of girl so this extra step is just silly for me.  I honestly don’t have a clue that I’ll even notice new stretch marks if and when they arrive.  It’s all good.”

Sleep?  Oh, glorious sleep.  How I truly, truly, truly miss you!!! My boys just aren’t wonderful sleepers.  I only have myself to blame.  We co-slept for so long because with nursing through the night until almost age 2 with both boys, it was just easier and we all got better sleep.  But now we are just trying to transition both of them to their room, which isn’t going bad at all, they just both still like to wake up and crawl into bed with us, and I usually am too lazy to get up in the middle of the night to put them back so we all just snuggle, which I love to do anyway.  That being said, Benjamin had a terrible night last night because he threw up several times through the night.  He is doing just fine and eating well today but I am BEAT from only a few hours of not the best sleep.  Moving forward the goal is that both boys are in their room all night so dad and I can get ample sleep before this new one arrives.  When I do sleep, I will say it is a bit uncomfortable, and has been.  My hips are starting to get achy after lying on one side for too long and my low back is a bit achy as well.  But when I CAN sleep, I do sleep and I sleep hard.  And it is wonderful.  I am counting down until naptime today so I can nap with the boys.

Best Moment This Week?  As with the previous pregnancies, I love feeling this little one move.  And he or she is pretty active.  The other week, the best moment was when Ryne went to feel my tummy with his hand and then he rested his chin on my belly and baby kicked him right in the chin!  It was so funny for all of us.  Although does this mean they’re already picking at each other?!

Miss Anything? What do I miss this time around?  First to quote my Benny pregnancy: “…don’t take this the wrong way, I am NOT a big drinker AT ALL, BUT with fall approaching and all of the fall stuff out in stores I will say I miss being able to take a taste of some Angry Orchard Hard Apple Cider or some of the seasonal Blue Moon brews that are out there.  Again, I wouldn’t be drinking much of them anyway, but it sure does make me want to put my football jersey on with a good pair of jeans and sit down with one to watch a ballgame with my hubby!  With the windows open and the fall breeze coming in…sigh…I just love fall!” I don’t really miss too much else, other than rolling over in bed and not being so tired constantly.  I do miss being able to pick Benjamin up in a baby carrier to wear him, especially on hikes!  He’s such a “big boy” though that he wants to walk most of the time anyway, but he does still need some help now and then, and he does NOT want to be wrapped on my back unfortunately!

Movement?  With the anterior placenta this time around, I don’t know if I’m feeling things more or differently or what.  I did start feeling this baby’s flutters around maybe 16-18 weeks, and I don’t recall feeling the others very well until after 20 weeks.

Food Cravings?  Currently, I am craving ICE.  And very specifically the kind of soft ice you find at Costco, Zaxby’s, some Chick-fil-a locations, hospitals, and Sonic.  And also sugar, because again, I need to do the detox and get it out of my life for a bit!

Queasy or Sick?  Nope, thankfully haven’t had any of this the entire time, just like with the other two pregnancies.  Hoping very much that it stays that way!!

Showing?  Silly question, yes.

Gender?  To be revealed upon baby’s birthday! ūüôā

Labor Signs?  No, and I would like them to stay away for quite a while!

Belly Button In or Out?  That thing has been out since about 13 weeks!  I don’t know that I’ll ever have a true “innie” again after these pregnancies.  I don’t think it ever completely went back after Ryne.

Wedding Ring On or Off?  On…with Ryne I didn’t end up taking it off until the very very end…like the last week or two of that pregnancy, which again, for me was around weeks 35 and 36. 

Mood?  I’ve had my moments. Definitely feeling hormonal.

That is A TON for now so I’ll see ya later! ūüôā

To Those I Will Serve

I have always loved writing, journaling, blogging, vlogging, whatever you want to call documenting life’s happenings and either keeping it private or sharing it with the world. ¬†I was in on the blogging thing when it first got started and I had a massive blog that I kept up very well and was very consistent, but it wasn’t for anyone in particular, it was for me. ¬†My journals and blogs have always really been for me but there have been a few times when I have been more active and connected in the blogging world where I have crossed paths with some really cool folks and I’ve loved the connection. ¬†You know, when that other person just seems to “get” you, without having to explain yourself?

The social world we live in today is FULL of people searching for something or someone just like them, for something they can belong to, turn to for advice, guidance, or ideas. ¬†I’ve been there too. ¬†And for me, it has been truly life changing. ¬†Not in a light sense either. ¬†My connections literally changed my life, my ideas, expanded my ways of thinking, and exposed me to more encouragement and support than I ever could have imagined. ¬†The internet has a funny way of breaking down barriers when you are willing to be vulnerable. ¬†There are support groups, niche groups, and secret groups. ¬†My turning point began when I was walking through one of the lowest times I’ve ever experienced, processing through my miscarriage and battling full force with infertility on the way to conceiving again. ¬†I stumbled across a community that got me. ¬†That had been on the same path I was walking. ¬†They could relate to my feelings and desires when seemingly no one around me in my “real world” could. ¬†I want to provide something of solace, insight, fun, quirkiness, and faith to those who may stumble across my little space in the internet world.

I am long-winded, both in person and in type. ¬†I feel passionately. ¬†I get so caught up when talking about my passions that everyone else in the room seems to vanish, just like it was yesterday when I found my passion to serve families as they journey to become parents. ¬†My goal for this blog is to cover a variety of topics, simply to do what I call “real-life blogging”. ¬†Many others do this through vlogs and whatnot and maybe one day I’ll start to settle in to maybe one or two very specific niches for myself, but mainly I see this as a springboard to helping others through sharing our life. ¬†What we love, what we’re going through, our thoughts on the products and services we use every day, and how we are applying God’s Word in our lives. ¬†My dream is to create a space of positivity and faith always, woven through the threads of this space so that there is never any question of my character or of the God I serve, who guides me, and whom I am diligently, and faithfully following hard after.

My goal is to be vulnerable and to reach those who are women, moms, sisters, and friends who could just use a dose of authenticity in a world that is telling everyone to be different from who they are. ¬†I certainly don’t have this nailed down. ¬†I’m far from it but I’m hoping we can come alongside each other even for just a little while and share life together, encourage one another, and leave knowing a little bit more about who we are and WHOSE we are.

So to sum up Day 1 of the Feel Good Blogging Challenge:

My tribe consists of mostly women, probably younger mothers who are a little overwhelmed and trying to find their place in their new role. ¬†These women are those who want to come together and celebrate the little joys of the every day. ¬†To live in the moment, connect with our Creator on a daily basis, and to share in and be lifted up by my real struggles and triumphs and I candidly share our walk as a family. ¬†These women¬†definitely want to see pictures of my little boys because that is something I do best! ūüôā

I want to share my story with women because we need each other. ¬†Period. ¬†We do. ¬†As the stereotype can portray, and as we have probably all experienced a time or too, women can be difficult to understand or get along with. ¬†We love each other but we also love to judge each other or envy one another, and instead, my desire is to just be real. ¬†To share the struggles and triumphs so that I can hopefully just reach one woman who needs to hear the inner ramblings of my head. ¬†To learn something from my blogs about my doula work and my passion for childbirth education and lactation consulting. ¬†I’m taking a leap here by trusting God when I feel He has been urging me to start my blog again and to really hone my focus. ¬†I’m trying to muddle through at the moment and figure out what that looks like but I’m trusting Him that there must be some reason He has given me to write and that there will someday be someone out there who needs to hear something I’ve written.

I’m going to be honest. ¬†I’m still trying to figure out why someone would want to read something I’ve written. ¬†Ultimately it isn’t about me, it is about Him. ¬†And it is about them, you, the women I am hoping to serve. ¬†My goal is to ultimately point my life toward Him so that others can seek and find Him and accept them into their hearts as well. ¬†I have no clue what this looks like. ¬†I’ve seen countless blogs before that are all packaged up so nicely and here I am, Simple Susie, having no real template or styling or any of that. ¬†I hope to gain the knowledge and tools to do that but NOT so I can boast about my awesomeness in designing a blog but so I can create a space where others will want to come to be encouraged and have someone they can relate to because I’ve been there and I’m not perfect but I can share what I’ve learned along the way!

And lastly, I think you should know by reading this far that I hope women will take away the knowledge of and a love for our Savior, Jesus Christ.  I love Him.  I am still learning Him, who He is and how I can be more like Him.  My ultimate goal for this blog would not be for personal gain, but to point others toward Him.

“But those who wish to boast should boast in this alone: that they truly know me and understand that I am the LORD who demonstrates unfailing love and who brings justice and righteousness to the earth, and that I delight in these things. I, the LORD, have spoken!” Jeremiah 9:24

It is far too late for me to be up and posting when I really want to be snoozing next to my big sweet two month old BUT I had to take the moment to say what a wonderful, beautiful week it has been for our household.¬† It has not been “perfect”, whatever that is, by any means but it has been real, and it has been fun, and it has been frustrating, and it has been what is has been…beautiful, with reminders of His love, perfection, and grace all around us.

We have gotten out and enjoyed the weather together and with our friends.¬† My body has received further healing.¬† We have loved hard, laughed hard, and played hard.¬† We’ve also had our fair share of spending time in the corner and behaving poorly, adults included.¬† But we’ve made the choices this week to forgive one another and to love one another.¬† We’ve shared special treats and sweet kisses.¬† We’ve snuggled and read books, sung songs and had races around the kitchen and living room.¬† We got to meet up with friends this week at the park and at the playground.¬† We also got to have friends over tonight, totally unplanned, and it was a blast for all!

We’ve learned about the letter “c” and the sound it makes and the words it can start to spell such as “cat”, “car”, and “cow”.¬† We made valentine invitations for our class party and started to make the valentines we will exchange with our friends.¬† Benjamin has smiled a lot and is already wearing 3-6 month clothes.¬† He loves to smile at big brother and Ryne loves to love on him, albeit a bit too rough at times.¬† Again, all in all, we’ve loved and we’ve lived in the moment this week, together.¬† We’ve spent less time on technology and more time on each other.

I am so grateful for the Word of God.¬† That He has given us His truths to guide us along each day and that when we trust in Him, He aligns everything just perfectly for our good and for His glory.¬† I am grateful that “as our day, so shall our strength be” Deuteronomy 33:25¬† He has given me much strength and so much more to be thankful for in every moment.¬† I am so grateful for my beautiful baby boys and my precious husband who loves me in spite of myself at my worst.¬† I am grateful for His healing and His perfect design for our bodies, our marriages, and our children.¬† I am grateful that we have a God who is faithful to His promises and that we can make the choice to trust Him every day.¬† I am grateful that He sees us through eyes of grace and not what we deserve.¬† I pray that I would continue to strive to be the woman, wife, and mother that He created me to be in His image.¬† That I would somehow shine a light that only points to Him and that I would decrease and He would increase (John 3:30).¬† Lord, please help me to surrender every day and to submit every thought captive to You (2 Corinthians 10:5).¬† I am blessed beyond measure, my cup overflows, and I am beyond grateful to You for all of Your gifts and provisions.¬† Thank You.

 

Okay, so I know this blog is for me and my thoughts so no one has really been waiting to find out when our baby arrived but I really have been meaning to get this story down before details escape me!

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One of the last times Ryne and I would spend together with the belly.

Let me begin with the night before.  November 18, 2014.

I was feeling uncomfortable physically but emotionally, I was doing well.¬† I had come to peace in my mind that if this little baby did not arrive until December that I would be okay with that.¬† After all, I know how fast time passes so I knew I would have my baby soon and that I would for sure have him or her before Christmas.¬† This particular week our girl’s Bible study was meeting on Tuesday night to study our Boundaries With Kids book together.¬† For some reason I cannot remember now, Doug and I were busy doing something and neither of us felt like making dinner so Doug went up to Little Caesar’s and got us some cheap, greasy pizza.¬† I took mine over to Becky’s so I wouldn’t be super late for study and I just ate there.

Well, we didn’t quite get very much studying or discussion done that week.¬† We talked about all sorts of things and were laughing our heads off about silly things.¬† Doug texted me twice and had me rolling…for some reason the past few days I thought everything was hilarious…hormones, I guess.¬† He texted me that Ryne was asking the dogs to play cars with him and that one of the dogs actually did come over and was like, “okay, what’s up, let’s play”…for some reason, the scene just was so funny to me.¬† And then Doug told me a lady came over for his Nerium party (Nerium is a skin care line that our next door neighbor sells) and he didn’t even know he was having one.¬† He said he should have invited her in and ran upstairs to get a sample of Jergen’s naturals and try to sell it to her.¬† Again, I could just see that scenario in action and how Doug could totally pull off a prank like that for a few minutes.¬† Then the girls and I were all goofing off and talking about every subject under the sun, and we started to plan a get together that Friday night to watch Frozen and to all do boudoir photos…so discussing that possibility and encouraging one another was pretty funny.

Jess reminded me that the night before she went into labor she was spending time with some family and she was just rolling laughing too so I should watch out!¬† Amanda was rolling her eyes at me for being so silly thinking it could be a December baby because she was clearly convinced baby would be here sooner.¬† I told all the girls that I didn’t believe baby was in¬†the optimal¬†position just yet so I thought that might still be holding us back a bit.¬† After a fun night I headed home and took a hot bath and typed out an email to my girls thanking them for a fun night and asking for their prayers that baby would get in an occiput anterior position, that my body would remain pain free (from the cyst, pelvic pain, and other random things), and that our household would remain healthy.¬† I pressed send on that email on November 19, 2014 at 12:27am, got out of the bathtub (yes, I emailed from my phone in the tub…I was a big, uncomfortable pregnant lady, cut me some slack!!) and went to get ready for bed.

Before bed I rubbed a generous amount of peppermint essential¬†oil combined¬†with coconut oil on my lower back, as I had¬†done a number of times before, in an attempt to get baby to turn to anterior.¬† Ryne decided he was going to have a bit of a rougher night sleeping so¬†I helped Ryne into bed with us so he would sleep.¬† Once he was settled, I focused on visualizing our baby turning into the best position for birth and visualized what I wanted my birthing time¬†be like.¬† Visualizing was one of¬†my favorite¬†tools from my Hypnobabies home study materials.¬† I love to visualize so I continued to get in a good frame of mind and drifted off to sleep.¬† I had a “normal” night of sleep…tossing and turning a bit, hips getting sore, and keeping Ryne’s limbs off of me.

I woke up at 5:30am and noticed that Doug was in the bathroom.¬† Well, I really had to go to the bathroom too and I couldn’t wait so I went into the other bathroom.¬† I heard Doug leave the bathroom and then return so I was concerned.¬† I texted him and asked if he was okay (and yes, I took my phone with me once again, because I planned to be up for the day and take a bath!) and I told him I thought I was having bad gas pains from that greasy pizza the night before because we don’t normally eat all of that.¬† He texted me at the same time telling me he thought he was also having gas pains.¬† I told him I was really uncomfortable with these gas pains plus a baby on top of it¬†and that they were really bothering me so I was getting in the bath.¬† I took the time in the bath to read my verse of the day, Psalm 37:4¬†“Take delight in the Lord, and He will give you your heart’s desires.”¬† I meditated on that verse for a little while.¬† I also listened to my “Childbirth in the Glory” mp3.¬† I love and highly recommend this album.¬† It has tracks with music and scripture to meditate on and is so calming and affirming to hear God’s promises for birth.¬† I was in the bathtub for about 35 minutes and was also having some bad back pain on top of the gas pain.¬† I was just very uncomfortable all around.¬† I texted Doug¬†at 6:28am and told him I thought this might be labor starting but that I wasn’t sure.¬† I started timing these “waves”/”contractions”/”gas pains” at 6:34am.

I then went back into our bedroom and leaned over Doug, who was still lying in bed with Ryne, and told him I didn’t know what was going on.¬† That I was having really bad pains and I didn’t know if it was labor or not.¬† I breathed through a contraction leaning over Doug but I was so confused and so thirsty that I wanted to go downstairs to get some water to drink.¬† I made my way downstairs and dropped to the floor on my hands and knees to get through another one.¬† I don’t remember exactly what I was thinking at this time, other than, “holy cow, these are really challenging, I don’t remember early labor being this difficult with Ryne”.¬† I made it to the kitchen island and had another “wave” come over me and it was another one that rocked my world with how intense it was.¬† I think I got my water, or maybe I didn’t.¬† Doug had come downstairs at some point and was seeing what I was doing since I was completely naked walking around the house.¬† Doug suggested that¬†I contact Brenda, our midwife, and Sarah, our doula, to let them know what was going on.¬† When I was leaning over the island, I asked him to put counter-pressure on my back through that wave but it didn’t help very much.¬† It somehow brought me more back to the here and now and I didn’t need to think about that, I had to focus on surviving through each wave my body gave me.¬† I remember all of this being very foggy in my mind.¬† Ethereal, out of body somehow, it is true.¬† I was so IN my body and strongly feeling each sensation but at the same time, the little things like getting from place to place (upstairs to downstairs and back again) just seemed like I somehow arrived wherever I wanted to be.

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Maybe I should see if I can time these “pains”…

I went back upstairs and remember being back in the guest bathroom, leaning over the countertop again, turning on my Hypnobabies “Easy First Stage” and trying to wrap my head around why these felt SO different and difficult to when I was in early labor with Ryne.¬† I had been mindlessly timing my contractions for about 45 minutes and Doug suggested yet again that I go ahead and let Brenda and Sarah know what was going on.¬† I was in some serious denial and I was hesitant and told him I didn’t want to yet because “what if this ends up fading away and lasting for days like with Ryne?”¬† Some part of my brain knew this was the real thing so I ended up texting both Sarah and Brenda.

Texts to and from Brenda:

7:16am: (Me to Brenda) “I hope it isn’t too early to text.¬† I think things might be starting, but it feels really strong to be so early on…thought I had bad gas pains this morning but it has turned into something really tough and timeable, definitely contractions.”

7:26am: (Doug to Brenda) “They are lasting around a minute or more, and ranging from 3 minutes apart to 5-7 minutes apart.¬† Nothing super regular yet, but they are sounding really strong.”

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This was the real thing, whether I was in denial or not!

Somewhere in this 15 minutes Doug tried to again, help me get through contractions…I would ask him to help and then tell him to stop, that it wasn’t helping and I just had to do it.¬† I also told him I didn’t care if it slowed down labor, to get that pool filled up ASAP.¬† I had used all the hot water in my bath in the morning and I wanted to make sure we had plenty of time to fill it with hot water.¬† Ryne also woke up during this timeframe.¬† I saw him and remember talking to him and saying hi, but Doug helped him go downstairs and get some breakfast and watch something on TV to keep him distracted so Doug could still help me.¬† Doug brought the pool into our room and began filling it up.¬† He got pots of water on the stove to add to the pool when our hot water ran out.¬† He was rushing back and forth, caring for both me and Ryne.¬†I’m pretty sure this was also around the time where in my head, I was trying to figure out how we could quickly get our things ready and go to the hospital because I knew I would NOT be able to have this baby at home with the contractions already being this strong and overtaking me.

7:45am: (Me to Brenda) “This is really strong feeling already, I feel like I don’t know what’s going on because it is difficult for me to handle.”

7:46am: (Brenda to Me) “Somebody needs to get in the pool, pull together.”

I was texting when I could think to, in between contractions, still in the guest bathroom, and when I got this text from Brenda, a part of my brain was like, “hey!! I AM pulling it together, I’m doing all I can do…pull it together, humph!”

7:47am: (Me to Brenda) “But I’m also afraid that this is going to go on forever or that it is going to stop and not amount to anything.¬† Haven’t seen any bloody show or anything.¬† Doug is getting pool ready now.”

7:48am: (Brenda to Me) “Ok just moving faster than your first one to hang tight I’m trying to get there.”

7:48am: (Me to Brenda) “Are you sure this is moving faster and not just baby trying to get in a better position or something? Back hurting a lot too.”

I believe with these texts I was in this “in between” place where I was finally believing this was the real thing and it really was happening quickly and also still in a bit of denial and that I was being an absolute wuss and I was doing terrible with these contractions.

7:49am: (Me to Brenda) “Feels really real”

7:50am: (Brenda to Me) “No, I am sure, on the way!”

8:00am: (Doug to Brenda) “I have Val in the tub to help out”

8:12am: (Brenda) “Getting off at the Glade Road exit right now.

Brenda arrived at our home at 8:37am

Texts to and from Sarah (our doula):

7:14am: (Me to Sarah) “I think things might be starting…but it feels really strong to be so early on…thought I had bad gas pains this morning but it has turned into something really tough”

7:16am: (Sarah to Me) “Ok. Were you able to sleep last night?¬† You may be starting further along this time.¬† How far apart and how long are they?”

7:17am: (Me to Sarah) “Yeah I was able to get some sleep.¬† It feels really tough this time, but I don’t know if I’m just being a wuss…or if this is going to go on for days again.”

7:18am: (Sarah to Me) “No I don’t think this will go on for days.¬† Sounds like today is the day.”

7:43am: (Sarah to Me) “Have you been able to time them?”

7:50am: (Me to Sarah) “Feels like too much too fast.¬† But I’m still worried it’s not it.¬† But I think it is.¬† Doug is setting up the pool.”¬† And then I sent the text with the screenshot of my contractions that were coming every 2-3 minutes lasting over a minute.

7:51am: (Sarah to Me) “I think so too.¬† I was honestly expecting you to go like this based on last time.¬† Have you called the midwife? I am going to leave here in a few minutes.”

7:51am: (Me to Sarah) “Been going on since about 530 I think.¬† No bloody show or anything though but I feel like I’m having trouble with these.¬† It came on so quick.¬† Brenda is on the way I think but I don’t want this to not be the real thing.¬† Thought I would have more time.”

7:52am: (Sarah to Me) “Ok that definitely looks like active labor patterns.¬† I think you just skipped over early labor.”

7:52am: (Me to Sarah) “I don’t know.¬† This couldn’t be all in my head right?¬† This is already taking a lot for me.”

7:53am: (Sarah to Me) “That was how my labor was with Finley and I kept thinking I could not be in labor yet but was complete when I got to the hospital.¬† I think you were just expecting it to go slower but it definitely is not in your head.¬† Those contractions are over a minute long.”

7:55am: (Me to Sarah) “It’s difficult to tell because I’m just in constant mode.¬† Feels like I don’t know that I can do this whole thing like this.”

7:56am: (Sarah to Me) “You can.¬† This is probably close to the worst of it.¬† I have a feeling you won’t have ore than 2 hours of this.”

8:01am (Doug to Sarah) “I have Val in the tub to help with things.”

8:03am (Sarah to Doug) “Ok.¬† It sounds like she is pretty far along.¬† If you can do counter pressure on her lower back, that and some soft arm strokes between.¬† I’m on my way in the car.”

8:04am (Doug to Sarah) “Ok see you soon.”

8:55am (Doug to Sarah) “Baby is here!”

8:57am (Sarah to Doug) “No!!!!!!!¬† I am almost there.”

It was very difficult for me to¬†text through all I was going through with the¬†waves that kept overtaking me.¬† Somewhere around 7:30am is when I told Doug to please get the pool set up so that I could get in soon.¬† I told him I didn’t care if it slowed things down, I needed to rest in the water ASAP.¬†¬†At some point near 8:00am I guess Doug may have told me that the pool had water in it or maybe I just went from the bathroom to the bedroom and got in.¬† When I got in the pool, things continued to stay “real” and maybe I then allowed myself to let go even more, even though¬†in my mind I still felt like I was fighting it somewhat.¬† When I was in the bathroom I was listening to my hypnobabies tracks about early first stage labor, which was honestly a joke since I think I somehow skipped first stage all together.¬† The track then changed to the¬†Pushing Baby Out track and I don’t think I consciously heard or absorbed much of it but I do remember visualizing and thinking “open, open, down and out” like I encourage my own clients to do.¬† In my mind I had to think “open” because I was still somewhat nervous¬†since Ryne had trouble getting under the pubic bone.¬† I was convinced that mentally I could encourage this baby to easily come down and out and that this baby was in the perfect position for birthing and working with my body.

During this time I remember Doug running up and down the stairs.¬† He was helping boil water and fill up the tub more and he was also keeping Ryne distracted.¬† I was largely alone during this time in the tub.¬† The sun had already risen and the soft light was filling the room.¬† I was aware of this natural light and I was grateful for it on some level.¬† In the tub things were getting even more intense.¬† There was never a moment where things really let up.¬† I was squatting in the tub and could feel baby’s limbs moving against my abdomen and remember thinking, “what is this baby doing?¬† Baby is supposed to be working on coming out, not on moving around and kicking me still.”¬† I’m sure baby really was working on moving around the way he or she needed to be, but in my mind I remember thinking it was really odd that I was doing all this work with the contractions and that the baby was just hanging out in there, still kicking at me.¬† I would have a contraction and vocalize and focus¬†through it and then in between I tried to rest.¬† I laid down on my side in the water when I could and while it was still somewhat comfortable to try to do but at some point it all became too much and I couldn’t lie down anymore.¬† I remember resting in a squat in between contractions and just calling out “Your strength, Your comfort, Your rest, Your peace”.¬† This became my mantra.¬† In between every contraction I would simply call out and focus on those words.¬† I would say “I can’t do this without You.¬† Not my strength, Yours.¬† Your rest, Your strength, Your peace, God.”¬† I remember calling these out during some contractions too when I felt baby coming down.¬† This was such an intense and incredible experience for me.

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My birth affirmations banner

When I got in the pool, this is also when my body began pushing or bearing down¬†with the contractions even more than when I was out of the tub.¬† There was nothing I could do to stop it.¬† My body and baby were doing what they needed to do and I was along for the ride.¬† A wave would come and I felt such intense pressure everywhere down below.¬† I felt baby moving through my birth canal and the pressure becoming more intense.¬† Since I was alone during this time I was also trying to figure out if things were “okay” and that my body was actually progressing the way it should.¬† I could only assume that it was.¬† I reached my hand down several times to try to feel my cervix to make sure it was open so baby could come through but my mind simply couldn’t keep up with my body.¬† My body was doing exactly what it needed to do and so was baby.¬† I was able to trust the process because there was nothing else I could do.¬† I was reaching down to feel my cervix and I thought to myself, “I’m feeling baby’s head.¬† Baby is coming.¬† Baby is almost here.”

About¬†that time, at¬†8:37am,¬†Brenda and her assistant, Jen, arrived.¬† Doug calmly answered the door and¬†everyone came upstairs.¬† Of course, Ryne knew something was up so he also wanted to go upstairs to see mommy.¬† They all came up and Brenda told me she didn’t have time to get any of her equipment out, that this baby was coming.¬† They were able to get baby’s heart tones with the Doppler and said everything sounded¬†good.¬† I asked her if everything was okay and if baby was going to be here soon.¬† I needed that reassurance that everything I had been doing was right and I could¬†further relax.¬†¬†Brenda assured me that baby was about to be born.¬† During these next few contractions Ryne came over and gave me a kiss and held my hand.¬† It was exactly what I had hoped for when visualizing our birth.¬† I had wanted Ryne to be present but I wasn’t sure how he would do or how he would be acting.¬† Thankfully it was early in the morning and Ryne was interested in the birth process as opposed to causing trouble at the moment.¬† Within just a few minutes baby’s head was out and I could see it in the water.¬† The relief from the pressure on my perineum was incredible.¬† I just wanted to sit there and wait a few minutes so¬†that is what I did.¬† I told them all that I needed a minute.¬† Brenda said that was fine and to take my time.¬† Then I decided that I was ready to have this baby out and I don’t even know that I waited for a contraction, I just pushed the rest of my baby out.¬† I reached down and Brenda helped me bring baby to my tummy and chest at 8:46am, just nine minutes after Brenda arrived.

IMG_20141119_084851

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Ryne was calling out “baby came out!!”¬† And I was crying that we just had our new baby and telling Ryne to look.¬† Brenda came over and was wiping baby with the towel and rubbing baby’s back to get things going.¬† Baby was just fine and it was at that time that she asked if we wanted to look and see what we had.¬† I picked baby up and found out that baby was another sweet, precious boy!¬† We weren’t surprised.¬† We were so excited to have another baby boy.¬† Benjamin Wald Rohde.

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It’s another baby boy!

I stayed in the birth pool for another 10 minutes or so but I was ready to get out because I wanted somewhere comfortable to rest.¬† Brenda, Jen, and Doug helped me to get out of the tub and walk over to the bed to deliver the placenta and then I got to take a wonderful shower in my own bathroom, dress in my own comfortable, cranberry colored nursing gown, and relax back in my own bed.¬† Sarah arrived once I had gotten out of the tub and was delivering the placenta. ¬†She took beautiful photos of our experience and was there for me to hold my hand while having my repairs done.¬† The whole experience of birthing at home was an incredible one.¬† I kept saying, “Can you believe we just had our baby?!¬† I can’t believe that just happened.¬† So quickly and easily.”¬† While I was on the bed Benjamin was weighed and measured.¬† He was 8lbs 4oz and 19.75in long.¬† He was just perfect!¬† And we had been through a lot together during this pregnancy already.

This birth experience was intense for sure.¬† The speed of it all and how quickly the contractions came on and how strong they were from the beginning.¬† I definitely felt disoriented but overall, my body and my baby knew what they were doing and in my mind I was somehow able to just let everything go and just ride the waves, as intense as they were.¬† I knew they would wash over me and then they would wash away.¬† I had prepared a banner in my bedroom with affirmations along with a book of the notes and encouragement from the women at my Mother’s Blessing.¬† Needless to say, I didn’t have the time or thought¬†to actually use the book or my birth necklaces but I believe the act of preparing them and meditating on them was what I needed in order to let go and feel the support around me.

View More: http://bella-birth.pass.us/benjaminrohde

My birth affirmations book from all the sweet women who attended my Mother’s Blessing.

View More: http://bella-birth.pass.us/benjaminrohde

The rest of the day I got to love on our new little boy with Doug and Ryne.¬† We were so happy to welcome him into our family and are excited to see just who he becomes and the fun (and fights!) he and his brother will have in the years to come.¬† We are so grateful for the gifts that God has given us in building our family. ¬†Many gifts we couldn’t even imagine just a few short years ago.¬† We are grateful for our birth team and that we got to spend so much time with them over the past months of pregnancy and for their continued support and knowledge.¬† Overall, even though this birth was different from my visualizations, it was everything I could have wanted for my first homebirth.¬† I am so grateful for a wonderful birth team.¬† Brenda’s care, skill, faith, knowledge, and wisdom throughout our entire journey.¬† Brenda’s open communication with me whenever I needed it provided much peace of mind and confidence in our decisions.¬† Brenda had to go the extra mile for us several times throughout this pregnancy and I am so appreciative; Sarah’s encouragement and willingness to listen as well as provide wonderful support throughout our journey and capture such beautiful moments for us; and I am extremely grateful to my husband for having faith in the birth process and supporting me in the decision to birth at home.

View More: http://bella-birth.pass.us/benjaminrohde

Ryne waiting for me to get out of the shower. He was amazed by the whole thing I would imagine.

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Relaxing in our own bed after a nice, hot shower!

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Ryne playing with the midwife’s flashlight because, why not?!

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Kisses for baby Benjamin.

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Benjamin being weighed. Love that sling!

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We did it!!

“As your days, so shall your strength be.”¬† Deuteronomy 33:25¬† I am so grateful to God for His strength, His peace, His comfort, and His rest.¬† I am grateful for His design and His beautiful process and creation for birth.¬† All the glory to Him for allowing us to¬†play even¬†a small part in creating new life!

View More: http://bella-birth.pass.us/benjaminrohde

Welcome to the world, Benjamin!

 

 

I’m still really amazed that I’ve made it this far!¬† My “estimated due date” is next Wednesday and I’m eagerly, and mostly patiently, waiting for this sweet baby to arrive!¬† I really can’t wrap my brain around the fact that we will have another sweet little one to love on.¬† It seems so surreal still.¬† I feel this baby moving inside of me and it is incredible.¬† We are ready.¬† We are excited.¬† I won’t lie and saying I’m not a little nervous to be a mom of 2 but I’m to the point where I know we will survive because that’s the only choice we have ūüôā But we will do more than survive, we will thrive and welcome this baby into our hearts and give him or her all the love we have for him or her, just like with Ryne.¬† And it will be so cool to see Ryne become a big brother.¬† I think he really will do an awesome job, even as he adjusts to sharing his home and his mom and dad.¬† He is such a cool little guy.¬† Talking and communicating so well and as always, he just keeps getting cuter and cuter each day!¬† We are so grateful God has entrusted us to raise these sweet babies.

As far as my plans and to do list from last time, let’s take a look at what I’ve gotten accomplished…or not!!

  • Make birth affirmation banner – DONE and hung up in our room!
    • I really need to get on this.¬† It is a banner I want to create for our bedroom with verses and affirmations for birth as encouragement and strength
  • Send out thank you cards from Ryne‚Äôs birthday party and one of my showers
  • Get Christmas cards started
    • Create excel sheet
    • Purchase cards
    • Purchase return address stamp
    • Purchase stamps
    • Address envelope – I’ve addressed them all and signed them, with the exception of adding new baby’s “signature” and will have to do that once we know who he or she is!¬† I’m also still waiting on our return address stamp to arrive, which should be tomorrow, and then all I’ll have to do is stamp that on the outside and it’ll be ready once I get the stamps on.
    • Sign Cards
    • Print pic of our family of 4 when baby arrives and include in cards
  • Send out thank you cards from second shower
  • Go on morning date with Doug on Monday, November 17th while Ryne is in school
    • Breakfast/brunch
    • Something else fun with just the two of us
  • Go to Scalini‚Äôs sometime around 40 weeks
    • Find a sitter for a dinner date
  • Pack bags for hospital
    • My bag
    • Doug‚Äôs bag
    • Ryne‚Äôs bag
    • Baby’s bag
  • Car seats installed
  • Clean out baby‚Äôs closet/organize
  • Clean out Ryne‚Äôs closet/organize¬† DONE mostly…I organized all his clothes in there but technically it could still use some weeding through of misc items that have just been thrown in there but honestly, it’s not a priority!
  • Keep house clean daily (we‚Äôve been pretty good about this one lately!) – We’re still doing well with this one. All of our laundry is actually being consistently washed and put away daily, which is huge!
  • Finish decorating Christmas tree – Well…we ran into a snafu with this one because the lights on our pre-lit tree, which is only a few years old, keep blowing out.¬† We have to figure out what to do with it so that we can actually decorate it.
  • Put up other Christmas decor
  • Bake cookies and brownies for labor time for birth attendants and some for us for afterward
  • Go to Stone Mountain for Ryne to ride the train
  • Prep Ryne‚Äôs school activities for December – I NEED to do this TOMORROW and turn everything in on Wednesday.¬† So this will take up my day tomorrow.

I’m happy with what I have gotten done so far and I still have plenty to do to keep busy until baby decides to arrive.¬† ūüôā

How Far Along?  38 Weeks

Total Weight Gain?¬† I’m pretty sure I’m around the 40lb mark for this pregnancy, which is about where I was with Ryne, but I don’t think anyone would believe me.¬† My height and the way I carry the weight seems so evenly distributed that everyone things I’m just all belly and couldn’t have gained a thing.¬† Well, folks, I have.¬† And my belly IS big, it is measuring at 42 weeks already, which is par for the course how I’ve been measuring the entire time.¬† I do believe, and my midwife confirms, that I have a lot of fluid.¬† Which is great for baby and for his or her movement.

Maternity Clothes?  I am only wearing a handful of clothes right now that I feel comfortable in.  It is mostly leggings and long shirts.  It is getting difficult with the weather getting so cool in the morning and night but being upper 60s and low 70s during the day.

Stretch Marks? Lots and it is what it is.¬† I don’t know if there are any new ones.

Sleep?  Sleep is still not so great these days.  It is just difficult at this point to get comfortable at all.  I am in the habit of taking a long, very hot bath with lavender before bed and diffusing lavender before and while I go to sleep.

Best Moment This Week?¬† I am feeling better, not in as much pain, and I have more energy than in my 36th and 37th week.¬† That’s pretty awesome for me ūüôā

Miss Anything? ¬†Sleeping. ¬†Comfort.¬† My pelvis not hurting.¬† It’s all good, just a few more weeks.

Movement?¬† Baby is still moving quite a bit at all hours of the day and night. ¬†I’m still loving it and I’m sure I will all the way til the end!

Food Cravings?  I just love food.  Period.  I did really want a sweet tea today.

Queasy or Sick?  Nope.

Showing?  More and more every day.

Gender?  It’s a baby!  Can’t wait to meet him or her and find out!

Labor Signs?  Not really but I have had a few real contractions here and there and I am feeling things in my cervix area so I do believe my body is slowing prepping itself which is fine with me.

Belly Button In or Out?  Out

Wedding Ring On or Off?  On

Mood?  Much better than it was 2 weeks ago, thankfully, but I am still pretty irritable.

Looking Forward To?¬† All the things I want to accomplish from my to do list that I posted yesterday.¬† My date with Doug on Monday morning ūüôā

I truly can’t believe I’m here.¬† It is surreal to me because even though this pregnancy has been so different from my pregnancy with Ryne, I guess I just really did expect my body to have this baby early.¬† I’m NOT complaining at all about baby needing to stay in as long as he or she needs…but I AM quite a bit more uncomfortable this time around I think.¬† I haven’t posted in a couple weeks because when I made that last post I was going through an issue with a TERRIBLE stomach bug that lasted an entire week and took even more time to get back to normal.¬†¬† We were of course worried about dehydration and I did NOT want to go into labor with the additional pain I was experiencing from that.¬† It. was. awful.¬† But it did bring me to a place where I once again was challenged and pushed to seek His guidance for me and to truly trust in His timing and provision.¬† Of course I want the birth I want and I really am so ready to meet this baby, BUT I am trusting that no matter what happens, Jesus is all that matters.¬† And as long as I and our baby are kept healthy and safe, at the end of the day, I will accept whatever the rest of this pregnancy and birth brings to me.¬† I also know that God loves to provide for His children and He gets great joy from seeing us delight in the joys of our heart so I am holding on to that hope too and trusting that He knows what I want, He knows what is best, and He knows the perfect time for me to receive that fulfillment.¬† I am feeling in a much better place at the moment than I was about a week ago.

I’ve also stopped working outside the home at this point which is scary and new but exciting and fun…and overwhelming.¬† I’ll have to do an entirely different post about that but right now with 14 days to go I’ll share some of the things I am planning or looking forward to accomplishing before baby arrives.¬† I’m soaking up this time I have in our remaining days as a family of THREE before we become the Rohde Party of FOUR!

  • Make birth affirmation banner
    • I really need to get on this.¬† It is a banner I want to create for our bedroom with verses and affirmations for birth as encouragement and strength
  • Send out thank you cards from Ryne’s birthday party and one of my showers
  • Get Christmas cards started
    • Create excel sheet
    • Purchase cards
    • Purchase return address stamp
    • Purchase stamps
    • Address envelopes
    • Sign Cards
    • Print pic of our family of 4 when baby arrives and include in cards
  • Send out thank you cards from second shower
  • Go on morning date with Doug on Monday, November 17th while Ryne is in school
    • Breakfast/brunch
    • Something else fun with just the two of us
  • Go to Scalini’s sometime around 40 weeks
    • Find a sitter for a dinner date
  • Pack bags for hospital just in case
    • My bag
    • Doug’s bag
    • Ryne’s bag
  • Car seats installed
  • Clean out baby’s closet/organize
  • Clean out Ryne’s closet/organize
  • Keep house clean daily (we’ve been pretty good about this one lately!)
  • Finish decorating Christmas tree
  • Put up other Christmas decor
  • Bake cookies and brownies for labor time for birth attendants and some for us for afterward
  • Go to Stone Mountain for Ryne to ride the train
  • Prep Ryne’s school activities for December

Okay, so there’s quite a bit I would like to do.¬† In reality if these things don’t get done that’s okay, I’m just trying to fill my days but also relax…I really am taking it quite easy despite the looks of that list.¬† I know these weeks (or days) are really going to fly by and then we will be wrapped up in the whirlwind of our new baby!¬† Alright, I’ll be sure to put something up tomorrow with a 38 week update!

No turning back.  No turning back.

The world behind me, the cross before me.

I have decided to follow Jesus.

Though I may wander, I still will follow.

Though none go with me, still I will follow.

Will you decide now to follow Jesus?

No turning back.

I will follow You, Jesus.

 

He always knows just how to humble me.  Stop me in my pride.  Remind me of His cross.  The cross He bore for me.  For my sins.  For my uncleanliness.  To make me new.  To make me worthy.  To create in me a new heart and a new mind.  A new spirit under His authority.  He is my Jehovah Rapha.  El Shaddai.  El Elyon.  Jehovah- Raah.  Jehovah Shammah.  Jehovah Mekoddishkem.  El Olam.  Elohim.  Qanna.  Jehovah Jireh.  Jehovah Shalom.  Abba, my daddy, and Emmanuel, always with me.   He is all these things to me and more.

And He has greatly reminded me of them the past week.¬† Especially when I sought Him out yesterday and today through His Word.¬† His living and breathing Word which always fills my spirit.¬† Renews my mind and my heart.¬† Yet, I wander all too often.¬† What is wrong with me when I go elsewhere to be filled with the empty and useless stuff of this world?¬† Nothing that I seek elsewhere is truly fulfilling, whereas He can fill me with the water that truly quenches my thirst.¬† I am grateful that today, I have that filling.¬† Even when things aren’t going perfectly.¬† When I feel alone or afraid, I can remember that I am not alone.¬† I have nothing to fear.¬† Praise Him, who is most holy and faithful to me, even when I am not faithful to Him.¬† My heart weeps for that fact.¬† I no longer want to keep God at an arm’s length from me, pretending only to myself that I am protecting myself.¬† By keeping God at arm’s length I am keeping myself from His blessings and all the good that He has to give to me and to show me and to teach me.¬† I am far worse off when I try to manage it myself.¬† Thank you, God, for this humbling reminder of how much I always need You more than anything else in this world.

Since last week I have been having stomach issues that have not let up.¬† They have taken my energy, stolen my joy, caused fear in my heart for my upcoming labor and birth, and I am putting a stop to that NOW.¬† He bore the cross for me and He is all I need.¬† No matter what twists and turns the remaining days of this pregnancy or my labor and birth may have in store for me, at the end of the day, I can rest in Him no matter what happens.¬† I pray I can be an example of this to my children every day, not just once in a while.¬† I pray for Doug’s health and wellness to rise above whatever is in our household.¬† I claim healing for our family and our home and all who enter into it.¬† I pray for Ryne’s health through this winter/cold/flu season as well as I pray for his sweet heart as he faces the changes of welcoming a new brother or sister to our family.¬† I pray he will adjust well and will feel the love and joy and excitement of a new family member as well as the coming season of thankfulness and celebrating the birth of our Savior.¬† I pray that even as I weather this storm and come out the other side that my God would be mightily glorified above all else and that His light would shine through me.¬† That the devil would get under my feet during this season.¬† God will remove any fears, doubts, anxiety from my heart and my mind.¬† Every thought of mine will remain captive to God and will pass through the lens of His Kingdom before I entertain any of it.¬† I praise Him for His goodness forever and ever.

Thank you, Abba, daddy, and thank you Jesus for all you have done on my behalf, when I was truly the very least of these.

Okay, so I mentioned these in yesterday’s post and I’m in love with them so here are a few of them:

mefield

rynelegThis one melts my heart…oh, my sweet little love.

rynelaughI just love this photo of him smiling at the belly!

handbelly

usMy beautiful, sweet family.  I adore them!

I am so incredibly grateful for my beautiful, sweet friend who captured these sweet moments for us.  Please do yourself a huge favor and check her out!! You can also visit her facebook page for latest and greatest sneak peeks!

We’re in the 20s!! ¬†Here’s a pregnancy update for you!

How Far Along?  35 weeks and 5 days

Total Weight Gain?¬† Not sure at the moment. ¬†Although I don’t think I’ve been gaining at quite the rate I was before!

Maternity Clothes?¬†¬†I made the poor decision of pants a few more times these past couple of weeks and I did regret it. ¬†Right now it’s either skirts, dresses, or leggings with a longer top over them.

Stretch Marks?¬†Not sure if I have any new ones…my belly was quite itchy in spots last week though so I’m sure I’ll be getting some before this one arrives but honestly, I have so many from before I don’t even know how I would recognize new ones.

Sleep? ¬†Sleep is not so great these days. ¬†Same as before with it being difficult to roll over and with the SPD discomfort but now it’s like whenever I wake up after a few hours of sleep, something else is hurting…like my hip, or shoulder, or back. ¬†Eh, I guess it’s just the added weight and the ways I’m sleeping. ¬†I’d say I can’t wait until the belly is gone so I can shed some of the weight and sleep again, BUT I won’t be sleeping much when baby arrives anyway!

Best Moment This Week?¬†¬†Well, technically this is from last week but I LOVE our maternity photos. ¬†They are absolutely gorgeous and I couldn’t be happier with them. ¬†I’ll see if I can insert some below ūüôā

Miss Anything?  Sleeping.  Comfort.  Energy.

Movement?¬† Baby is still moving quite a bit at all hours of the day and night. ¬†I’m still loving it and I’m sure I will all the way til the end!

Food Cravings?¬†¬†I’m about to go to the store because I really want some pepperoni and sliced italian dry sausage. ¬†There’s this brand I tried at Publix the other day and now I can’t get enough of it.

Queasy or Sick?  Nope.

Showing?  More and more every day.

Gender?  It’s a baby!  Can’t wait to meet him or her and find out!

Labor Signs?¬†¬†Well, I don’t know if they’re actually “labor” signs so to speak but I do think there have been seeing signs of my body getting ready a bit. ¬†A few days ago I started to have a lower back ache that didn’t last long but it was reminiscent of what I would experience before I get my period, which I’m pretty sure I felt a bit of before Ryne was born. ¬†I’ve also been feeling slightly more twingy lower pelvic area types of sensations, different from the SPD ache that I usually feel. ¬†So I’m sure my body is just doing its thing how it knows to do!

Belly Button In or Out?  Out

Wedding Ring On or Off?  On

Mood?  I’ve been MUCH more emotional and sensitive this past week.  Everything makes me upset it seems.  And Ryne has been a 2 year old little pill which has really been testing my patience constantly it seems.

Looking Forward To? ¬†Halloween this week, meeting up at the park with family on Saturday, and then meeting this baby soon! ūüôā