Saturday, June 25, 2011

Baby #2: Week 38

June 25, 2011

How far along: 38 weeks

Baby's size: Watermelon (Month 9: weeks 37-Delivery)

Symptoms (otherwise known as Mommy C's Weekly Complaints): 

  • A LOT of low pressure  
  • Baby #2s position is pushing on a nerve causing sharp, shooting pains in my upper thigh/groin (not sciatica- more in the front) when I am walking (not all the time thank goodness!)
  • Sore hips -although the foam pad seems to be helping a lot.
  • Fewer braxton hicks and cramping this week compared to last, but I have had a few painful contractions as well (just enough for me to think, "could this be it?" and then they stop).
  • General uncomfortableness
Total Weight Gain:
Total weight gain= +11 pounds  

Maternity clothes:yes

Best moment this week:  I learned that there was an actual change happening with my cervix.   This made me grateful that I didn't go through all that pain last week for nothing. 
Movement: Yes, on Thursday I swear he was doing gymnastics in my uterus.  Then on Friday I had a bit of a scare when I hadn't felt him all morning and when I laid down to try and do kick counts I only got a couple in an hour.  I called the midwife to find out if I should be expecting decreased movement as I approach the end of the pregnancy and she informed me that I should still be getting 10 kicks in 2 hours.  So I drank some juice and stopped trying to multi-task and sure enough, in the second hour he woke up and started moving. 

Food cravings:  Fruit - so glad that strawberries are in season!

Gender: BOY!!!  

Labor signs: 
This past week was so much calmer than the week before.  I decreased my activity a ton thanks to my husband and sending Superman to daycare on Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday mornings (in addition to his full day on Monday).    

However, on Monday the midwife said I was 3 cm dilated and 50% effaced.  Then on Tuesday I lost the rest of my mucus plug (I had been losing smaller amounts of it the week prior.  Sorry if this is TMI.).  I have also had a few contractions that were actually painful, but they never became regular or continued for very long. 

I am torn on whether or not to have the midwife check me on Monday.  I am grateful that this little guy has decided to stay in a little longer and I am not sure I want to stir things up.  So we shall see...

What I miss:  Being able to go about my normal routine.  I also really miss going to Boot Camp.  

What I'm looking forward to:  Tuesday when my mom gets here!!!!

Weekly Wisdom (aka what I learned this week): Listen to your body.

Milestones: Made it another week!  I am shooting for July 2nd now because we think it would be cool for Superman and Baby #2 to be exactly 18 months apart.

Emotions: I am going to write a full post regarding the change in my emotions this week.  However, I will share that I have been much more quick to tears...I almost starting crying today when my husband went and got cash so I could have a lemonade at the Farmer's Market this morning.  I think I have said, "stupid hormones" to more people than I can count this week as an explanation for the tears. 

Boot Camp:  OFFICIALLY DONE  (even though I miss it!!)

Pregnancy Water Aerobics: Monday (1 hour each)  -I am not sure if I am done with this or not.  I could only do about 15 minutes of the actual workout before the braxton hicks started up again.  I spent the remainder of the class floating and enjoying weightlessness.  I imagine if I go, I will likely just go to float.

Total exercise time:  not enough to really count.

Till next week!

Friday, June 24, 2011

An Update to "How Can It Be June?"

Way back on June 1 I wrote a post about how the first day of June signified how close we were to Baby #2's arrival and how anxious that made me feel.  People, I was more than just a little anxious...I was down right having panic attacks and crying at the simplest thing.  Not good. 

Thankfully, between your encouragement, a sisterly heart to heart, my husband's patience, and my organizational skills, I am in a MUCH better place today.  Don't worry it didn't take me 24 days to get here, just took 24 days to sit down and write a post about it. 

I want you all to know that your encouragement did mean a lot to me.  Every time someone comments on one of my posts, sends me a private message, or comments on my Facebook page I feel more grounded.  These simple acts have made me feel less alone on this journey.  Thank you.

As you can imagine, having a sister that is 6 years older than you has its positives and negatives.  My sister has always been there to tell me how she feels about my various life decisions and in general she usually is right...which is highly annoying.  Over the years she has gotten better at the delivery of her insight (and advice) and I have gotten better at receiving it. 

When she called me after reading the post on June 1st she was careful with her words, but encouraged me to think about what would happen if my to-do list didn't get done.  The idea of thinking about that isn't new to me (thanks years of therapy) and although I knew it was a good idea, it was scary to me.  I felt like I was comfortable with my lack of control over the birth of this child, but not having control over what happens to Superman during this time was pure anxiety. 

So what if I didn't get Superman's food preferences/routines/etc written down?  Would whomever was taking care of him figure it out?  Of course they would. 

Would Superman be scared for life because his schedule was completely thrown out the window? I doubt it. 

If I go into labor and my husband's aunt can't get here to take care of him, would I not be able to find anyone that could help? Well......this one was the hardest to get passed.  Turns out though, I have some pretty awesome friends that have offered to help if I need it.  I hate the idea of imposing on them...especially because I feel like I can't repay them.  But you know what, if that is my worst case scenario I am doing pretty good, right? 

So I was slowly able to move forward, out of my shadow of anxiety and into the light of (some amount of) calmness.  I created a to-do list and slowly began to work on the items on the list.  Ever so often I would get overwhelmed with one task or another, but my husband was there to help me work through it.  And today, a day before I am officially 38 weeks pregnant, that list is basically complete.  I still need to install the car seat, I would like to find a used glider since we still use the glider that is in Superman's room, and my mom still needs to get here (I added this as a joke because of my slightly superstitious nature. I think that if I cross off all my to-do items, there is a greater chance I will go into labor.  Since I want my mom here, having her arrive as one of my "to-dos" satisfies that superstition. Silliness.).

So I am feeling pretty relaxed about things.  I have been taking more time to myself so that I can rest, my contractions have stopped for the most part so this little guy seems pretty content to stay put for a little while longer, and life is good.  Don't you think?

Monday, June 20, 2011

Yeah, that doesn't mean a thing...

My sister and I were talking today about how nothing seems to mean anything when you are at the end of your pregnancy.

You feel like a bowling ball is between your legs because your baby is so low? Yeah, doesn't mean he is coming soon.

You feel great (no baby in the ribs, between your legs or squashing any organs) and the baby bump is just a mere accessory at your 39th week?   Yeah, that doesn't mean anything either.  He could come tomorrow.

Your baby is 7 pounds according to the latest ultrasound?  Doesn't mean he will be a 10 pound baby by the time he arrives since the ultrasound isn't all that accurate.

You are having a lot of cramping and braxton hicks?  Doesn't mean squat. (neither does not having cramping or braxton hicks, in case you are curious)

You are dilated to 3 cm and 50% effaced?  Don't sweat it.  It could still be weeks before that little guy is born OR it could be that he is coming tomorrow. 

How can we know so much about pregnancy at this point and not have any of these symptoms mean anything about timing of your delivery? My sister, clearly the more brilliant sister in our family, has decided that if she ever gets a one on one with God she is going to make a few suggestions.

First, at the moment of conception your large toenail will change color...preferably a color that would indicate the sex of the child(ren).  The toenail would stay that color throughout the pregnancy, unless of course there was something wrong and then it would change to a new color so that you could seek medical attention.  Finally, about 24 hours before the baby will be born, the toenail will change to a new color to indicate that delivery is imminent so that you can get your final plans in order.

Personally, as I play the "when will he come?" game, all of this sounds fabulous!  What do you think?

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Baby #2: Week 37

month 9
June 18, 2011

How far along: 37 weeks

Baby's size: Watermelon (Month 9: weeks 37-Delivery)

Symptoms (otherwise known as Mommy C's Weekly Complaints): 
This was a tough week.  In fact on Thursday there was a part of me that thought I wasn't going to make it to this weekend still pregnant.  
  • A LOT of low pressure  
  • Sore hips - I finally bought a foam pad that is big enough for my side of the bed.  This allows me to sleep on my side with slightly less hip pain....just wish it was more than slightly less.
  • Cramping and Braxton hicks 
  • General uncomfortableness
Total Weight Gain:
Total weight gain= +11 pounds  

Maternity clothes:yes

Best moment this week: We had an ultrasound on Monday and got to see our boy again (and actually confirm that he is still a boy).  They estimated his current weight at 7 pounds 1 ounce which had me worried at first.  Then I looked back at the ultrasound we had with Superman at the same point.  They estimated his weight at the time to be 7 pounds 2 ounces and he was born 2 weeks later at 7 pounds 14 ounces.
Movement: Yes, less kicks though and more full body movements.

Food cravings:  Watermelon!  I think it is funny that the baby is as big as a watermelon and that is what I am craving. :)

Gender: Still a...  BOY!!!  

Labor signs: Um, Yes?  
(Rather than just list how I have been feeling, I am going to write it out.  These are the things that I think I will forget in the years to come (since I have already forgotten what it was like with S) and I would like to have record of it.) 
     Tuesday night I began to have trouble walking without having a ton of low pressure.  I also began to get really emotional over everything.  Wednesday I woke up with some mild cramping (like period cramps), but it went away shortly after waking up.  I tried to go to boot camp, but between the low pressure, my emotions, and eventual contractions, I left in tears.  I was fine, just needed some rest.  Wednesday night, thanks to Isabelle's suggestion on the Facebook wall, I went to water aerobics and I felt really good while doing them.  It is nice to feel weightless when you have so much pressure the rest of the day. 
     Thursday I woke up again with the mild cramping, but they didn't go away.  I called the midwife after 2 hours and spoke to the nurse.  We ruled out any infection that might cause the cramps.  I explained that I was also having really low pressure and feeling like I had to go #2 all the time (sorry TMI) even though I didn't.  I got the feeling from her that she thought maybe I was in early labor, but wasn't ready to tell me that.  She told me I could call back and make an appointment to be checked out if I felt worse later.  The cramps basically stayed with me all day, although I noticed them less if I was distracted so I tried to stay distracted.  Unfortunately, that backfired on me and made them worse later.  So I laid low the rest of the day and decided if I still had the cramps in the morning, I would go to the doctor.
     Friday I woke up and the cramps were gone.  I brought S to an indoor playground/cafe in town and we played for about an hour, but then the cramps came back.  So we went home and I rested while S napped.  It was such a nice day out, but the warmth was just too much for me in the afternoon.  I felt nauseous and cramping.  So instead of playing outside all afternoon like I had planned, S and I hid out inside.  I felt awful that I couldn't bring him outside, but I knew that I would only be worse off if we went out.  Eventually I decided that my cramps and nausea were too much so I filled our giant tub in the master bathroom and S and I took a bath together.  It was wonderful!  He got to play and have a great time and it really helped me feel better.
     Yesterday was my wedding anniversary so my husband and I went out to dinner dessert.  Sitting upright appears to be difficult for me and a trigger for the cramping and contractions.  We made due though and had a great night.  Unfortunately, I woke up around 2 am last night with more cramps, contractions, and nausea.  It is frustrating for me that just the act of going out to dinner and dessert was too much for my body to handle.  
     I am now dealing with the guilt of what this means for Superman and the week ahead.  My husband tries to remind me that I stopped working at 37 weeks with S and so I shouldn't feel bad, but I had been feeling so good for so long that I really had hoped that I would stay that way till my water broke.  I guess I was being a bit naive.   

What I miss:  Feeling like I can do anything.  I will probably sound like a broken record here, but I really thought I was going to feel good till the end this time around.  

What I'm looking forward to: Next Tuesday when my mom gets here. 

Weekly Wisdom (aka what I learned this week): That our bodies have a way of telling us when to slow down and when you don't listen, it just speaks louder to you. 

Milestones: Made it to full term! 

Emotions:  I am so emotional!  I am currently blaming it on hormones and the fact that I feel so lousy.  I want to be excited that I am going to meet this little guy soon, but am worried that he will come sooner than he should.  I know that he is technically full term now, but I have to believe that another week or two will be better for him...even if it is a struggle for me.  

Boot Camp: Tuesday (1 hour 15 minutes) and about 20 minutes on Wednesday----OFFICIALLY DONE 

I have put my boot camp membership on hold and will not try to work out again till 6 weeks postpartum.  

Pregnancy Water Aerobics: Wednesday (1 hour each) 
Total exercise time:  2 hour 35 minutes--For this week the only "exercise" I am doing is going to water aerobics and then I am still going to be cautious about how much I do....then next week I may reconsider once my mom gets to town. :)

Till next week!

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

The More You Know...L&D Edition (Part 2)

Now that you know how Superman's birth went, let me tell you how I think it could have gone differently.

What happened:  I was hooked up to fetal monitoring as soon as I was admitted.

Why I didn't like it: This meant that I was stuck by the monitors the whole time.  I had been able to walk around before I was admitted, but once I had the monitors on, I couldn't.  Walking is supposed to help with dilation and since I wasn't dilating, I feel like I missed out on a helpful strategy. 

What I would like to see happen this time: I want intermittent monitoring so that I can move around, walk, whatever feels right.


What happened: I couldn't use the tub. The doctor said that I couldn't use it since my water had already broken and there was an increased chance of infection....which isn't true according to the midwife I met with on Monday.  I was allowed to take off the fetal monitoring straps to go into the shower for a little bit though. 

Why I didn't like it:  I think I may be part fish.  I love the water and am so much more relaxed when I am in it.  The shower felt good, especially when my husband put the sprayer on the part of my body where the contraction was, but I don't think it was the same as the bath at all. 

What I would like to see happen this time:  If available, I would like to be in the tub for much of the labor.  Thankfully I have been given permission to stay at home (even once my water has broken, as long as it is clear) until my contractions pick up.  I plan on using our giant tub during this time.  Then once I am at the hospital, I know that the midwives will let me use the tub, as long as it is free. 


What happened: I got an epidural too early.  I figured there was no reason to be uncomfortable.  If I was eventually going to get one, why not do it as soon as the pain got a little bit much.

Why I didn't like it:  I was only about 3 cm dilated at the time.  The epidural slows things down so I then had to have pitocin to speed things up.   I believe (based on information told to me from a lactation consultant) that the pitocin delayed my milk coming in.  It is merely a speculation, but my gut says that this is correct. 

What I would like to see happen this time: I want help to relieve the pain of contractions without medication.  I am pretty sure I still want the epidural, but I want to wait as long as possible to avoid the need for pitocin.  We were given a bunch of techniques to help with the pain during our prenatal classes with Superman and I am hoping that some of them help.  The midwife will also be there to help make suggestions. 


What happened: I started pushing when they told me I was 10 cm.  I didn't have the urge to push, but they told me if I wanted to start pushing, I could. 

Why I didn't like it:  There are a couple parts wrong with this.  First, my epidural may have been interfering with my ability to know when to push.  Second, I think I wasn't really fully dilated.  Many women dilate to greater than 10cm and it is more important to wait till you get the urge to push.  Basically I did a whole lot of pushing for no good reason.  That would be like me pushing now, 3 weeks before my due date- it doesn't do anything. 

What I would like to see happen this time: I want to wait till I get the urge to push.  I am hoping to utilize the epidural in such a way that I can still feel the contractions and get the urge to push.  I don't know how realistic this is, but I do know that it is possible. 


You would think that I might have this very long and detailed birth plan given the fact that I want this birth to go differently than it did with Superman.  Interestingly, my birth plan is going to be pretty simple...with even less on it than I had with Superman. 

Why you ask?  Because last time I had a doctor delivering my baby.  This time I have a midwife.  I made this change just recently thanks to the recommendation of my ob.  She is going to be on vacation around the time when I am likely to deliver so despite the fact that she and I are on the same page (she wasn't the one that delivered S), many of the other doctors in the same office aren't.  Fortunately, there is a team of midwives in the same office.  They meet each week and coordinate regarding the patients that are close to delivering so that I won't hear one piece of information from one midwife and then hear something different from another.  This also means that a whole lot of the things that I want to see happen during labor are standard practice for them already! 

After my last appointment with one of the midwives I am actually excited about this labor.  I can't wait to see how things turn out this time.  While it may not go completely smoothly, I have no doubt that I will have fewer (if any) things that I will look back on and regret. 

So do you have any regrets from your labor and delivery of your child(ren)?   What do you want to see go differently with your next labor?  If things went really well, what (or who) do you credit for this? 

Can't wait to hear from you all!

Monday, June 13, 2011

The More You Know...L&D edition

I already know that this child's birth is going to be different than Superman's birth. It isn't so much that Superman's birth was horrible, but rather that it wasn't ideal.  I have learned about labor and delivery since then and I can see how a few changes could have made a lot of difference in how it went. 

I think it is helpful for me to share Superman's birth story first so that you can understand why I want to see things go differently this time let's start there. 

Superman's Birth Story 

My water broke at around 7:30 in the morning January 1st.  I wasn't really having contractions yet, but when I called the hospital, they told me I should come in.  We took showers, packed the car, and then dropped the dogs off and got some McDonald's before we headed to the hospital arriving about 9am.

When I got there they confirmed that my water had broke (Duh!), but told me that I was only about 2cm dilated.  We walked laps around Labor and Delivery while we waited for our room to be ready.  By about 10am we were in the room.  I wanted to labor in the tub, but the doctor said that I couldn't because of the risk of infection (which is false, but I will go into that later).  Since I was also now hooked up to the IV and fetal monitoring, I was stuck in the room.  To help with the pain and encourage my cervix to dilate, I used the yoga ball and eventually tried the shower (for the pain).  Finally in the early afternoon my contractions started picking up and I decided that since I was planning on an epidural anyway, I might as well get one then before the pain got to be too bad. Unfortunately, it slowed the process down for me and a couple hours later they gave me pitocin to help me progress.  About an hour or two later I began to have some really severe pain in the lower left quadrant of my belly.  It appeared that I had a "window" in my epidural and we needed the anesthesiologist to fix the epidural.  He pulled it out a little bit and the pain went away.

Finally about 8pm they told me I was fully dilated to a 10 and could start pushing if I wanted to.  I (not knowing any better) said, "sure!" and I began the long, long effort to get Superman out.  I felt like I had no idea what I was doing.  I didn't think I was pushing correctly, but no one told me that so we just plugged along.  About an hour and a half to two hours into pushing the "window" came back.   It got so bad that I decided that I was done with pushing and gave up.  S had made zero progress towards being born at this point and I was told that his head was likely stuck on my pelvic bone.

The anesthesiologist came back and the doctor said that I had two options.  Turn up the epidural so I would be prepped for a c-section or try a narcotic.  He asked me if I thought I could push more if the pain wasn't there.  I told him that I thought so.  I can't remember exactly how it went, but basically he gave me 5 contractions to make some progress with Superman or I was going to need a c-section.

I don't know what that narcotic did exactly, but the pain went away, I could finally feel the pressure where I need to push, and S began to make slow, but steady progress.  Despite the fact that it took some time (2 more hours), I felt like I could run a marathon.  I couldn't get over how great I felt while pushing and excited that the end was near.  When he was close to being delivered, the doctor told me that the NICU staff was going to come in for the birth.  He was concerned that 4 hours of pushing had tired S out and they wanted to make sure he was okay (what they told me after he was born was that they were actually concerned that I hadn't been making progress because the cord was wrapped around S's neck. I was so relieved that this was NOT the case).  He told me that if all was well, Superman would be placed on my chest afterward, but if not they would need to take him.  Thank goodness he was fine.  At 12:05am, my husband cut the cord and S was placed on my stomach, where he stayed for the next hour and a half.

Superman did have a fever when he was born, but it was low enough that they weren't too worried.  When they finally gave him a bath, the fever broke, but at that point the pediatrician on-call was already told about the fever and a series of labs were ordered.  For the most part, this was not that horrible, except that they tested his sugar levels and they were low.  They were low again that morning so we were told that we needed to give him some formula to help get them back up.  Superman seemed to hate that stuff so he didn't drink much.  It caused me a lot of stress that morning that they were forcing me to give him formula.  However, in the end I was grateful to have some formula, because we ended up needing to use it to "top him off" on days 3 and 4 because my milk was delayed (did this with the help of a lactation consultant so that it did not impact my milk production- I do not recommend doing this without their help).

Now that you know the story, next up is all the lessons I learned and things I will do differently.  Stay tuned for that post next!!

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Baby #2: Week 36

month 8

June 12, 2011

How far along: 36 weeks  -Technically I am still in my 8th month.  This seems wrong since I have less than a month till my due date of July 9th.

Baby's size: Honeydew Melon (Month 8: weeks 33-36 -- Average size: 17.2-18.7 in and 4.2-5.8 lb.)

Symptoms (otherwise known as Mommy C's Weekly Complaints):
  • A LOT of low pressure  
  • Sore hips - I spend a lot of time squatting and stretching them out
  • Cramping and Braxton hicks  (no back pain!!)
Total Weight Gain:
Total weight gain= +9 pounds  

Maternity clothes:yes ---starting to look at some good summer nursing tops.  If you have a suggestion, I will gladly take it!  (I would like to avoid having to layer with a tank underneath.)

Best moment this week:  Finding out that we were going to get to see the little guy one more time before he really arrives. 
Movement: Yes, although he is slowing down a little bit.  He moves throughout the day, but always the crazy movements I was getting.  I am guessing he is running out of room!

Food cravings:  Watermelon!

Gender:  BOY!!!   (We are hoping the ultrasound on Monday will show that this is still the case!)

Labor signs: Same as last week- lots of low pressure and some braxton hicks.  There are times when the low pressure is so bad that I have to stop because it feels like the baby is going to fall out.  I know that won't happen, but it catches me off guard.  I was reading the Baby Center week by week update for this week and it said that some women describe it as having a bowling ball between their legs.  Yeah, that sounds about right.

What I miss: Being comfortable.  I had my first "I'm done" days this week.  If you have been pregnant or lived with someone who was pregnant, you know about this.  These are the days where there are a lot of tears, a lot of complaining, and a lot of wishing for this baby to be OUT.  

What I'm looking forward to:  The ultrasound Monday! 

Weekly Wisdom (aka what I learned this week): That I am going to switch to a midwife (still delivering in a hospital)!  I will get the benefit of having a midwife's wisdom, guidance, and support throughout labor and delivery and if (God forbid) something go wrong, there is always a doctor on-call. 

Milestones: Less than one calendar month away from the due date!

Emotions:  A bit more weepy this week....mostly over things that are sappy or when thinking about my stepmom who passed just before I got pregnant.

Boot Camp: Wednesday and Friday (1 hour 15 minutes each each day)

Pregnancy Water Aerobics: none (1 hour each) 
Total exercise time:  2 hour 30 minutes--I met my goal!  Now to get back to water aerobics at least once this week.  We shall see if that happens or not. It is at night so most nights I am too tired to go.

Till next week!

Friday, June 10, 2011

Outdoor Adventures: Your Local Park

Another day, another outdoor adventure!  Today we are talking about your local parks and what they have to offer you and your toddler.

1. The Typical Playground Park
Whether it is our local park across the street or one of the bazillion you can find around your city, the park is a ton of fun on a sunny day.   In the Portland Metro area there are so many different parks that I think it is helpful to break them down into three main groups. 

These parks offer play structures for kids to climb on, slides to slide down, and sometimes swings.   Superman particularly likes parks that have wider steps that he can climb (stairs vs. a ladder), slides, and a toddler swing.  He is also a fan of the ones that have wheels to spin.

Pros: Usually contains your child to a somewhat confined space; other kids to play with; FREE; and a variety of activities to keep them occupied for longer amounts of time.
Cons: You can't sit back and just watch them play, in fact it may require you to be on the play structure with them to prevent falls; big kids that don't pay attention to younger kids; full exposure to the sun; sometimes your favorite playground also has a fountain and it can be really difficult to keep them from the water.

Our Favorite(s): Magnolia Park in Hillsboro and the playground at H.M Terpenning Rec Complex (this one has a sun shade over it!) in Beaverton. 
2.  The Park With A Water Feature
These parks may have a playground, but they also have some sort of water feature to play in as well.  In the Portland Metro area there are more than just a few to choose from.  Some have water fountains that the kids can play in and others have little wading pools and they all are a ton of fun.  Be sure to bring your towels!

Pros: Easy way to cool down on a hot day; FREE; toddlers can play fairly independently (at the water fountains, not the wading pools); doesn't require you to wear your bathing suit in front of a bunch of strangers
Cons: You will likely get wet too; not an activity you can do on the fly (unless you keep a change of clothes and towels in the car); fully exposed to the sun

Our Favorites:  Jamison Square (fountain and wading pool) and Waterfront Park (at Saturday Market location) in downtown Portland
**I have heard that 53rd Avenue Park in Hillsboro is fantastic, but I haven't visited it yet.  Magnolia Park (mentioned above) also has a fountain that looks like it will be a lot of fun as well!

3. A Park For Walking or Hiking
Living in the Portland Metro area many of our local parks are quite large with fabulous trails to go walking or hiking on.  When S was too little for the backpack carrier I thought our hiking days were still far off and then I discovered many parks have paths that our jogging stroller would work fine on.  Now a days we still bring the backpack carrier or the jogging stroller, but S has a grand time exploring on his own as well.

Pros: You can get out and exercise; you don't need to wait till your child is old enough to complete the whole hike on their own, just bring a stroller or backpack carrier; you can teach your child about different plants or the joy of observing things around them; FREE; and thanks to the trees along most trails, you are out of the bright sun

Cons: You would need some sort of carrier or stroller if your child is not completely independent; many of the trails aren't paved so you can use a jogging stroller, but a regular stroller might be a rough ride (and hard to push); the possibility of your child touching poison oak/ivy is increased in the "wild"; I hate to say it, but there is also a possible safety risk.  Personally I do not take S on trails by myself when they are too secluded.  I wish I trusted the world more, but we reserve these parks for enjoying with my husband or other moms and their kids.

Our Favorites: Noble Woods Park  I like how secluded I feel when we are walking there even though we are just minutes from our home. This is a park that I never go to alone.
Cooper Mountain Nature Park - This is the first place we went for a "real hike" after Superman was born.  Our BOB stroller did really well on the pebble path and there are some great views along the way. 
Rood Bridge Park- This is a park that I will go to with just Superman and I.  The trails are really open to everything and there are typically enough people there that you are never really alone.  Superman likes the little stream there.  There is also a play structure at this park, but we have never played on it.

Alright ladies and gentleman , now that the weather is finally getting nicer, I encourage you to check out a new park with your little (or not so little) one.  Maybe even set a goal to try one new park each week!  Pack the cars full of snacks, water, sunscreen, and towels and you will be ready for anything!  Then come back and tell me about your adventures!  I would love to hear about your favorite parks!

Monday, June 06, 2011

Baby #2: Week 35

month 8 
June 4, 2011 ...well technically it is June 6th

How far along: 35 weeks  

Baby's size: Honeydew Melon (Month 8: weeks 33-36 -- Average size: 17.2-18.7 in and 4.2-5.8 lb.)

Symptoms (otherwise known as Mommy C's Weekly Complaints):  
  • Heartburn 
  • Lower back pain (from a lot of walking on the beach though)
  • Low pressure- I remember this from last time.  I remember telling my doctor about it and being so worried that it meant that I was starting to dilate and that the baby was going to come early.  She had gently chuckled at me and reassured me that it was normal.  Amazing how calm I am about it all now.
  • Cramping and back pain with Braxton hicks
Total Weight Gain:
Just went to the doctor's this morning and I am still at 9 pounds!  Because the doctor is cautious, I am getting an ultrasound next week to make sure that the baby is growing appropriately.  Since my fundal height is fine she wasn't worried, but wanted to be sure (she has never had a woman that had good fundal height and low weight gain have a baby not be growing okay).
Total weight gain= +9 pounds  

Maternity clothes: Growing out of maternity clothes...what is next? Moo moos.

Best moment this week:  Superman has begun to point to my belly and say baby.  I don't think he really gets it, but it is cute none-the-less.
Movement: Yes!  It is crazy to watch him move around my belly.  Seems like he is running out of space in there.  

Food cravings:  nothing really

Gender:  BOY!!! 

Labor signs: more Braxton Hicks this week...with cramps and back pain (as mentioned above). I am also having the low pressure (as mentioned above) and although it isn't true labor signs, it is a sign that things are beginning to "get ready".

What I miss:  Being able to comfortably read stories with Superman in my lap.  He has a hard time getting comfortable and settling down now.   

What I'm looking forward to:  The ultrasound next Monday! 

Weekly Wisdom (aka what I learned this week): Everything will be okay.  I freaked out a little last week because I realized we were getting really close.  Thanks to a bit of perspective and advice from my sister, I am feeling a lot better about things. 

Milestones: Started going weekly to my ob appointments!  We also talked about birth plans today at my appointment which lead my ob to suggesting that I might want to switch to a midwife.  You see, my ob will most likely be on vacation and although I trust all the other doctor's in the office, some have different opinions on laboring options.  I would really like to labor in the tub, but many don't allow it if your water has already broken (which is what happened last time).  So I have posed the question to my friends on my personal Facebook page and you can expect a post about it soon.

Emotions:  Still a little anxious that we are getting so close to the due date, but overall I am much better than last week.

Boot Camp: Wednesday  (1 hour 15 minutes each each day)

Pregnancy Water Aerobics: none (1 hour each) 
Total exercise time:  1 hour 15 minutes (I have a goal to get to 2 boot camp classes and one swim class this week)

Till next week!