Welcome to a piece of our sweet journey of life. This blog is about our family life-- my husband, my type 1 diabetic kindergartner, my spunky pre-schooler, my newborn baby girl, and myself! Enjoy!

Thursday, May 24, 2012

26 Weeks

We are at week 26, folks!

I am feeling fantastic, and from the way Michael kicks, I'd say he's feeling pretty fantastic too! :)

The blog comes a little early this week because tomorrow after work, Aaron and I will be on our way to the beach for a nice relaxing weekend! I am so excited! The beach is so relaxing, and I get to have a 5-hour road trip with my best friend... (Aaron, to all who are left wondering). :)

I measured my belly today and it is 17 and a half inches from the top to bottom of the "baby bump."

Apparently, I still look "too big to be true" to my coworkers. Today, one coworker said "Man, by the time that baby comes, he'll be three years old!" :) I guess we're not the only ones who are anxious to meet our little one.

This morning, Aaron took a picture of my growing belly:

Sometimes, when I sit at my desk and look down at my belly, it doesn't look so big.  But today I looked at this photo and was like "Wow! My belly IS big!" :)  That means Little Baby P. is growing, and I like that very much.

This past week, Aaron and I practiced with our carseat.  We put a pretend "baby" in there and fastened the straps, then un-did the straps, and worked on perfecting the process of securing our baby.  This is a picture of our pretend "baby" in the carseat:

This has been a big week for Little Baby P.'s development.

This Week:
-Michael develops air sacks in his lungs.  These air sacks (or alveoli) will keep growing for 9 years.
-The membrane that separates the alveoli from the blood vessels is now thin enough to allow for the breathing process to take place.  This means that Michael would possibly be able to breathe outside of the womb now, but of course we want him to stay in the safe, warm womb until August!
-The retinas have completed the development of the normal layers. This means that the eyes are fully developed!
-Brainwaves for auditory and visual senses are detectable in Michael's brain.  That means he can register sound and light. 
-Michael is able to start recognizing voices, and will be able to detect familiar sounds after birth!  That means I better start beefing up on the reading that we do for him!
-Michael weighs about 1 and 2/3 pounds and is about 14 inches long, which is roughly the size of a burp cloth (something we'll come to know very well in a few short months):

(Photo credit: merrimentdesign.com)

My Craves:
-Sour stuff (like lemon juice on apple slices)
-Peanut butter (like toast with peanut butter and chocolate chips on top)  :)
-Dried fruit (apricots, banana chips, even dried pineapple). Crazy, I know.
-And of course, cheese grits for breakfast (made in a pot on the stove top...yum yum).

Thank-you for your continued prayers!  We are going to enjoy ourselves at the beach on the last vacation we'll have as a two-person family. :)  Until next week, stay safe and air conditioned! Love, Reba

Friday, May 18, 2012

25 Weeks

We have made it to 25 weeks!  That means we have 15 weeks left to go!  I am so excited to be this much closer to meeting Little Baby P.!

My "beach-ball tummy" is staying true to form.  When I stand up straight, I can't see my toes.  I was able to paint my toenails one last time by myself this week.  From this point on, I will rely on my sweet mom to paint my nails. :)  Bending over is becoming quite difficult, which makes getting dressed in the morning an interesting part of my day.  Soon I'm sure I'll have to sit on the side of the bed to put on pants or shorts.

Some co-workers see my tummy, inquire about my due date, and ask if I'm going to make it all the way to August.  I politely say, "Well, I've already talked to the baby about that, and he knows that he's supposed to stay in there until the end of August."  Inside my head, I'm thinking "Of course I'm going to make it to August!  My tummy only measures 17 inches from top to bottom of the curve.  Michael and I have a lot more growing to do!

Although I am so so so excited to be 15 weeks away from meeting Little Michael face to face, and although I would LOVE to cuddle him now, I repeat this saying to myself each day:

(Photo credit:  wordpress.com)

This is a neat thought:

(Photo credit: nefhealthystart.org)

And finally, this picture (it's not me), shows what thoughts should be when it comes to awaiting Little Michael's arrival:

(Photo credit:  pinterest.com)

My mom works in the NICU (neo-natal intensive care unit) at a hospital nearby.  She has seen the teeny-tiny "25 weekers" be admitted to the NICU.  She and I both agree that we do not want Little Michael to have to go to the NICU.  We want him to be a healthy, full-term baby boy.  So much development is still left to be done in Michael's little body. 

This week was a big week in development.  High-lights include:
-Michael's hands are now fully developed.  He might be spending his awake times testing out the feelings in his hands by touching areas around the womb.  Sometimes I really believe that he's wiggling his fingers right on the edge of the womb and causing me to have a tickle in my tummy! :)
-Michael's brain and nerve endings are developed enough that he is able to feel the sensation of touch.  It's fun and comforting to think that he can feel us when we press our hands where his little body is resting in the womb.
-His arms and legs have almost grown to the size they'll be at birth.  
-His nose, which has been plugged until this points, clears and he is able to practice "breathing" through his nostrils.  Of course this means he's 'inhaling' amniotic fluid, but it's the skill of the breathing motions that counts. :)
-The structures in Little Baby P.'s spine consist of 150 joints, 33 rings, and 1,000 ligaments.  Crazy, right! How cool is that?!? :)
- His capillaries (or the teeny tiniest blood vessels) are forming now.  This will give his skin a pink glow.
-The blood vessels in his lungs develop this week.  These will be important in a few short months when he gives his lungs a work-out while crying.  Although a baby's cries can be stressful, I will be sure to remember the saying my mom told me:  "Crying is breathing and breathing is good."
-Little Michael weighs about a pound and a half, and is about 13 inches long, which is the size of one of those plastic recorder instruments from elementary school:

(Photo credit: musicroom.fr)

Sweet music to my ears!

My Craves:
-Sprite (I don't give in to this craving much, although we were able to buy some Sprite on sale at the store!)
-Juice (I don't give in to this one a lot either... in fact, it's hardly ever)
-No Bake Cheesecake (I'm proud to say that I haven't given into this one at all, but the craving is still there)
-Salad with tomatoes and cucumbers (I don't get a lot of opportunity to eat salad, but I love it when I get to indulge!)

Aaron and I have redone our Dave Ramsey budget forms and I am super excited about saving extra money to help with baby expenses!

Thank-you for your continued prayers as we get closer to meeting Little Michael!  Remember, we all want Michael to be a healthy baby, and:

(Photo credit: trademarkia.com)

Love, Reba

Friday, May 11, 2012

24 Weeks

24 Weeks Down, 16 Weeks to go.... That means we've hit the 6 month mark...and still have roughly 4 months to go.  Who calculated pregnancy at 9 months?  :)

Everyday, Michael shows more of his habits and personality.  I can say that when he takes a nap, he lays sideways near the bottom of the uterus.  He likes to wiggle his fingers against the side of the uterus, which in turn, gives a tickle to me and makes me smile. He definitely knows if someone besides me is watching him or trying to feel him move.  He is very stubborn in that regard-- it's even hard sometimes for Aaron to be able to catch a glimpse of Michael's movements!

My belly is getting bigger each day, and that's a good sign.  It means Little Baby P. is growing stronger and bigger as the days go by.  My tummy hasn't been measured at the doctor's office yet, but I measured it myself at home.  My tummy from the top of my baby-bump to the bottom of it is about 17 inches.  I know I have a long way to go!  :)  One coworker this week (who I don't pass by everyday) said "Wow! Look at your belly! You've got about a week left to go!"  I smiled and continued on my way and knew that this coworker doesn't really know how big the tummies of pregnant ladies can become! :)  Another coworker passed by me today and said "Look at that! It's a perfect little beach ball!"

(Photo credit: holdenbeachballs.com)

I am SO excited to meet our little baby boy!  It's so much fun to feel him move and to know that he hears us when we talk, read, and sing to him.  I am very much looking forward to being the mom to Little Baby P.!  This weekend, I will finally get to stand up in church when they ask all mothers to stand on Mother's Day.  I've been waiting for that moment for years! :)

This Week:
-Little Baby P. is working hard at packing on the pounds.  On average, a baby in the womb will gain half of a pound this week.
-His ears are fully functional.  He might get startled at loud noises like my hairdryer, etc. 
-He is getting used to hearing the "everday" sounds like the beating of my heart, air going in and out of my lungs, my growling stomach. :) 
-His inner ear is fully developed now and that means equilibrium is working.  Little Baby P.'s sense of balance is in place.  He can tell if he's upside down or right side up.  He can also feel my movements. 

-Little Baby P. weighs about 1 1/3 pounds and is a little over 12 inches long, which is the size of a footlong Coney from Sonic:

(Photo credit: randomfunnypicture.com)

My Craves:
-Spaghetti with meat sauce.
-Fresh peaches (I'm awaiting their arrival in the grocery stores)
-Super cold, very fizzy Sprite.

I know that Michael will be really starting to gain some weight (which is good).  That means I need to be careful to eat right so that Michael is gaining the weight and not me!  Of course, this means I might not need to keep coffee toffee bars in the house. :(

I'm very amazed and equally embarrassed at my ability to fall asleep while sitting straight up on the couch!  I was so excited to watch the new episode of "Swamp People" last night, but my sweet husband had to pause it halfway through because I couldn't stay awake!  Maybe someday, my evening energy will return. 

After "napping" on the couch until Aaron was ready for bed, I woke up with intense back pain.  I climbed into bed and the back pain wouldn't leave me alone.  I'm wondering if little Michael scoots down and rests his little booty on my organs, which in turn push down on my back.  I'm borrowing a foam mattress topper from Mom and Dad, and it does help to ease some pain on my pressure points.  Aaron is going to bring our spare recliner into our bedroom and push it close to the bed so I can start sleeping in a more upright position with the hopes of easing some of this nightly pain.  I'm thinking I will line the recliner with the foam mattress topper.  Aaahh, I'm seeing a cushy recliner bed in my mind already! :)

Thank-you for your continued prayers!  Love, Reba

Friday, May 4, 2012

23 Weeks

We have reached 23 weeks.  Only 17 more to go! :)  It feels great to be well past the halfway mark.

I had a great birthday and a fabulous trip!  Michael doesn't really like airplane rides.  I can imagine that the pressure changes were rough on him in the womb.

I have come to the conclusion that workers in the airport know which passengers are pregnant, and even can tell what gender the baby is.  When I handed my boarding pass and ID to the TSA agent in Baltimore, she said "Congratulations on your baby boy!"  Then in Atlanta, the girl at Burger King who handed me my whopper (no onions) said "Are you having a boy?"  I was quite impressed with their knowledge. :)

Little Baby P. LOVES meal time!  As soon as I take a couple bites of food, he happily gives a few kicks. :)  Hopefully this is an early sign that he'll be a good eater!

He still loves to be sung to and I hope he never grows out of that!  I find that if I sing my loudest in the car, he replies with some strong kicks.  Now, if only I knew if he liked the loud singing or if he is politely telling me to pipe down.... :)

This Week:
-Michael practices his "breathing" by sucking in amniotic fluid in and out of his lungs.
-He is continuing to accumulate fat and will double in size over the next month.
-His skin becomes less see-through.
-Little Baby P.'s body is more proportional, though his head is still slightly large in comparison with the rest of his body.
-He is about 11 and a half inches long and weighs a little over a pound.  That is about the size and weight of a Harry Potter book:

(Photo credit: myhero.com)

Sometimes I feel like I'm carrying around a couple of extra books in there!  :)

My Cravings:
-Coke (not Pepsi)
-Pot roast with carrots and potatoes.  I made this for the first time on Thursday night. Delish!  I ate it again this morning for breakfast, with a side of apple slices with peanut butter.  Did I mention I'm pregnant? :)
-Baby carrots.  Fortunately, I've been wanting a crisp veggie snack, and the baby carrots that didn't make it into the pot roast suffice quite nicely as a snack.
-Gale apples. Love love love them. 
-Chicken fajita quesadillas.  This is something we make at home by cooking chicken, bell peppers and a sweet onion (which apparently doesn't bother me like white onions do).  After putting the meat and veggies on a tortilla with some cheese, we fold the tortilla and stick it on the Foreman grill to make a quesadilla.  Yum! 

Yesterday afternoon, Little Baby P. and I went to the doctor.  I have gained some more weight, which is healthy and is to be expected.  (Though I was kind of shocked at the amount that I have gained since my last appointment).  However, the doctor said that as long as I'm eating when I'm hungry and stopping when I'm full, and as long as Little Baby P. is growing at a healthy rate, then weight gain is just fine. :)  However, a coworker yesterday came up to me and asked "How many?".... so maybe I should return to more water over Coke, and choose more carrots than artificial sweets. :)

The doctor said Little Baby P. has a "Perfect Heartbeat."  :)  I don't know the number of the heartrate, but perfect sounds pretty good to me! :)

The next appointment will be in one month, and I will be tested for gestational diabetes.  I was handed a little bottle of "fruit punch" to drink one hour before my appointment.  I will have to get my finger pricked to see if I am below, at, or above the threshhold they have established for possible gestational diabetes.  If I am borderline, then I will have to come back for a full screening.  Please pray that I do not show any signs of gestational diabetes!  Getting bloodwork done for my thyroid is enough for me!

Sleeping has become increasingly more difficult.  I start out on my left side until I wake up with left hip pain.  So, I switch to my right side until I wake up with intense pain on the right side of my torso just above where my ribs end.  So, I pile up pillows and prop myself up in a sitting position with my head cocked to the right side.  I'm thinking a recliner in the bedroom sounds pretty tempting. :)

I have met a new enemy this week:  Back pain.  It likes to hang out in my mid- to lower back on the left side.  Sleeping eases the pain, but by reading the paragraph above, you see how sleeping brings problems of its own. :(  I guess we'll roll with the punches and learn to deal with these slight inconveniences on the road to parenthood. :)

Thank-you for your continued prayers.  Everday I wake up and am excited to be one day closer to meeting little Michael face to face.  :)  Love, Reba