Saturday, November 7, 2015

Little Miss Giraffe

Our family expanded earlier this week! Ahh still in shock that I have a baby! She is happy and healthy though and I'm recovering fine :)

I chose to have her at a birth center and it was perfect. A relatively short labor and then I delivered her in a giant bathtub. I would definitely have a water birth again! Pushing was the hardest part and crowning was painful for me (though I'd already forgotten how bad it hurt when they put her on my chest) but I'm glad I did it drug free because I could feel everything and giving birth is an incredible feeling. Plus I was super proud of myself afterwards, haha!

We love her so much. Just soaking in every minute.  

I'm not sure I want to post her name and have it searchable on the blog, so check out this list - her name is number 8

And to think, last November we thought we couldn't have children. Feeling sooo grateful! :)

Oh and please excuse my absence around the web these past few weeks . . honestly, I probably won't be back to regular reading and commenting til Christmas time. 

Because I'm taking care of a baby! :)

Monday, October 5, 2015

Pregnancy Update: 36 weeks

Just a quick update (prompts stolen from Olives n Wine) . . feel free to ask me questions in the comments!

Due Date: November 1st

How far along? I hit 36 weeks yesterday! Full term at the end of this week :)

Maternity clothes: Yes, I've had to wear them for quite a while now. Looking forward to wearing regular things soon though!

Stretch marks: None yet.

Sleep: I sleep soundly from 8pm to my first bathroom break (around midnight or 1am), then I toss and turn til about 5 when it's time to get up. My hips get sore so I have to switch sides every hour or so.

Best moment this week: Going to the doctor's and hearing the baby's heartbeat. Always amazing!

Miss anything? Sleeping on my stomach and bending over. I have to squat when I drop things on the floor, haha. 

Movement: Lots of movement! This baby loves to dance around after I eat and when I'm laying in bed at night. Sometimes it will just push on the sides of my belly and stay there, like a stretch. I think I'll definitely miss all the movement when I'm not pregnant. 

Food cravings: Potatoes have been awesome lately. Steamed or baked, topped with butter and salt & pepper, mmm!

Gender: Still a surprise!

Name: We have two boy names and two girl names picked out. The plan is to wait until the baby arrives and see which name suits him/her.

Labor signs: I've had some Braxton Hicks (the practice contractions) the past few weeks and I'm 1 cm dilated. I'm all for it! On the one hand, I want the baby to stay put and keep growing til 37 weeks, but I'm so excited to meet them that I'd love it if the baby decided to come anytime after that!

Symptoms: Some heartburn at night. I've started sleeping with two pillows under my head and drinking milk before bed. Both have helped immensely.

Belly button in or out? Still an innie, but just barely!

Wedding rings on or off? Off! I think I stopped wearing them regularly around 29 or 30 weeks? They were easy to put on in the morning, but a struggle to remove after work, so I left them off as a precaution. I've heard horror stories of people who had to cut off their rings and I wanted to avoid that!

27 days to go!!

Still have more questions? Let me know :)

Wednesday, September 23, 2015


Sunrise on Sunday
Mr. G and I decided to go on one last little trip before the baby arrives (called a babymoon around here) so we drove to the beach on Saturday morning, stayed the night, and then came home Sunday evening. It was the perfect short break from work and getting things ready around the house. We spent a lot of time walking and talking, and of course ate way too much like we always do on vacation, haha! 

The weather was perfect, sunny and in the 70s (about 22-24° C). The ocean was chilly but it felt good to my hot pregnant body (I've never been a warm person until this pregnancy) and I was happy to get another wear out of my maternity swim suit! 

A little less than 6 weeks til my due date!

Crazy to think that on our next beach trip we'll have a baby in tow!

Are babymoons common where you live?

Monday, August 31, 2015

What I Didn't Read this Month

When I used to buy books, I felt obligated to read them even if they were dreadful to get my money's worth. But checking out books from the library has removed that feeling, as has getting older and receiving encouragement from others to just let go of books that I'm not enjoying. That's not to say I stop reading books willy-nilly but it's nice to have that guilt-free option in the back of my mind if I'm struggling to finish something. 

This month in particular has been rough for actually finishing books (or maybe I've just been too picky) so I thought I'd share the books I didn't complete rather than the ones I did. (Though if you're interested in what I did read, you can always check out my goodreads page.)
Links take you to the book's page on goodreads

A Discovery of Witches by Deborah Harkness - Pretty hard to read a romance novel when you hate the supposed love interest (in this case, a super bossy vampire named Matthew). The final straw was when Diana considers having her horse jump a fence but decides not to because it might upset Matthew - and then he walks over to inform her that their horse back riding date would have been OVER if she had jumped that fence. And Diana just goes along with it. Grr, made me all prickly!

A Piece of Cake by Cupcake Brown - This one's tough. It's a memoir of Cupcake's life in foster care after her mother dies. From reading the description, I knew it would be a dark read (with the promise of a happy ending), but I couldn't handle reading about the blatant mistreatment and abuse of children.

Cutting for Stone by Abraham Verghese - I was really interested in the premise of this book about twin brothers who are raised at the hospital where they're born because their mother dies in childbirth and their father flees soon after. But the medical writing is graphic, especially when Dr. Stone considers crushing one of the infant's heads during the labor and delivery scene. I felt like I might throw up trying to skim past it. Other readers confirmed many more surgeries lay ahead, so this is not a book I'll be finishing!  

Never Let Me Go by Kazuo Ishiguro - This was touted as a suspense book but I inadvertently guessed the mystery in the first ten pages or so. Which is probably why I found it to be a slow read. Plus the general situation is pretty depressing and again, not the best treatment of children so I stopped reading. 

Thoughts? I don't generally give up on so many books in a month, closer to maybe one book every few months actually - but all my preggo hormones might be making me extra sensitive. Do you stop reading books?

Monday, August 24, 2015

Meal Planning with a Magnetic Calendar

Usually my meal planning is fairly laid back. I look over the sale ads, pick out 2-3 meals I feel like making this week, and try to do as much of the cooking as possible on Sunday so we can ride out the work week on leftovers. But this does sometimes lead to dinner ruts or accidentally making two very similar meals super close to each other (tacos and enchiladas a few days apart). I figured keeping track of what we're eating for longer periods would alleviate the dinner ruts and help us remember some of those recipes we just haven't made for a while. 

I saw this idea on pinterest and liked it immediately, but it's taken me seemingly forever to just DO IT. I gave up on making it pretty like the original and that made all the difference. 
Completely fictional menu plan to give an idea of how it will look - I don't cook nearly this much, considering there are only two of us to consume all the food. And don't mind Monkey's tail, the turkey sketch, or that I forgot to write September :)

This project is pretty low key. I bought a magnetic calendar (so nice for appointments!) and business card magnets. The magnets got cut into four pieces and rather than stick fresh paper to the adhesive, I just left the protective covering on most of them. A few got fresh paper because I messed up when I was writing.
Only the first 30ish meals to come to mind earned a spot on a magnet - I want to make sure I use and like this system before I make a million of them! Besides those 30 meals, I also labeled about ten with "leftovers," "takeout," and various side dishes, like fresh fruit, buttered peas, roasted veggies, etc.

What I like about this idea is that it's easy to change my mind - it's as simple as moving a magnet to a different day. Or if we end up with a surplus of leftovers, I can swap out a meal for later in the week or push it off completely. And when I ask Mr. G what he's in the mood for this week - he can glance over the magnets for inspiration instead of saying he doesn't have any suggestions. 

The only thing I'm unsure of is how I'm going to store these little magnets when they're not in use. It would be great to have enough space to display all of them near the calendar, but that's just not practical. I may have a small basket around the house to corral them in though.

What do you think? Do you use a calendar for meal planning or make a list?
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