Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Pregnancy Update {27 Weeks}


This is the last week of my second trimester! I feel like I'm moving into the home stretch, even though I still have 13-ish weeks to go.  I'm expecting the time to go quickly with the upcoming holidays approaching.  I'll mark 7 months pregnant on Thanksgiving Day and 8 months pregnant around Christmas so the busy-ness will keep me from ticking down each day.  I have no desire to push this pregnancy along anyway.  It's been my aim from the beginning to enjoy each day, difficult in the early days of morning sickness, but much easier now.

I have my glucose screening today.  Because of family history, I've worried in the past about "failing" this test, but I'm confident that my current eating and exercise habits will help me pass with flying colors.  I'd prefer to avoid drinking that sugary concoction but excited to have an hour alone in the waiting room to read my book!


How far along? 
about 27 weeks




Gender:  

Girl.  And if there was any doubt, there isn't any now.  In September, I had blood work done as part of some genetic testing. Along with eliminating some serious concerns, it also confirmed 100% that this baby is a female.  

The next step was deciding on a name.  We had a short list of 5 names, but when we realized Brian's favorite name was my least favorite and vice versa, we scrapped the list and started over.  For fun, I asked for name suggestions on my Facebook page and we enjoyed sifting through your many ideas. And then suddenly one day, we settled on a name out of the blue and we haven't looked back.  We're keeping the name a secret until she is born, though.  We did choose to share it with the kids, and they have been amazing secret-keepers!

Maternity clothes? 
I wrote a whole post about this last week. 

Sleep: 

I'm sleeping well, but have noticed that I dream more often, and more vividly, than I do when I'm not pregnant. I need at least 8 hours every night to function during the day.  Our schedule is so busy this school semester that I don't get as many naps as I would like so that nighttime sleep is vital! 

Feeling:

I'm currently feeling better than I have during any of my previous pregnancies.  I had expected this pregnancy to be harder because I'm older (you know, the whole 35 thing), but I feel wonderful!


Movement: 
This baby is a mover, especially in the evening. She also has hiccups at least once every single day. 

Food cravings:

I wrote all about what I'm eating here.  I'm also craving oatmeal in any form.  I'm planning to put this in the crockpot tonight to be ready for breakfast in the morning.

What I miss:    
I miss bending over from the waist.  It's a bad habit, though, and my growing belly is training me to bend my knees and squat instead.  

Exercise:
I missed the 5K I had planned to run in September, due to predicted bad weather.  Instead, Brian and I were able to attend a 5K two weeks ago when I was 25 weeks pregnant. My only goal was to run my best to the finish because I don't have it in me to push hard anymore.  I didn't look at my watch, but ran totally based on feel.  I was pleased to see I ran the 3.17 mile course in 33:32, a 10:35 pace. 

I still run about 6 days a week.  Because I head out before breakfast, I need an energy boost to tide me over until I can eat a meal. My go-to are these energy balls. I actually prefer them without chocolate chips (which is saying a lot since I am a confirmed chocolate lover) and I like to double the cinnamon for best flavor.  I also added chia seeds to the last two batches I made. 

From the beginning, my plan has been to run as long as I'm able.  I'm nowhere near needing to stop, but my body is starting to drop hints that it won't be easy to run in the third trimester. 


Getting Ready For Baby:
While Maddie was at book club last week, I hit up a yard sale and found all these baby girl treasures for only $3! On a whim, we also put the baby's bed together on Saturday afternoon.  (And by we, I mean Brian.)



Contractions:
I've started experiencing Braxton Hicks contractions, one or two per day.  They are never painful but often uncomfortable.  Yesterday, I had my first mid-run contraction.

Nesting:

I'm a compulsive organizer, even without the pregnant urges. This month we did a deep cleaning of the kids' bedrooms.  We ended up with two trunk-loads of stuff for the Goodwill, plus multiple bags for the garbage.  Seeing the new clean open spaces were good for my peace of mind.

A Look Back at the 2nd Trimester:






Saturday, October 24, 2015

Weekend Links {Study Helps}


Popping in on this perfectly autumn Saturday morning to share 3 links that we are using in our homeschool.  Perhaps you'd like to use them, too. 

{P.S. These are great links, whether you homeschool or not!}

Punctuation and Capitalization
We found this chart especially useful. My older kids each printed a copy to keep in their Daily Grams {affiliate link} workbooks.


The Periodic Table of the Elements, in Pictures
Sometimes having a visual makes remembering so much easier!


Bible Reading Schedule for the Gospels
My three oldest kids started with John since that's what we were studying on Sunday mornings in church, but now they've moved on to other books of their choosing (Matthew and Proverbs, obviously not one of the Gospels!).




Wednesday, October 21, 2015

What I Wore {The 2nd Trimester}


Someone suggested I share a bit about my pregnancy style. I find it intimidating to say, "Hey, look at what I'm wearing!  Isn't it cute?"  But I'm going to make an attempt to talk style anyway.  

When I first found out I was pregnant, I scoured photos on Pinterest, searching for inspiration.  My body and the trends have changed since I was pregnant five years ago so I started with almost no maternity-wear.  I began to get creative with what I already had in my closet and a few investment pieces.  As I near the end of the second trimester, I'm not getting as much mileage out of the non-maternity clothing I used in the beginning weeks, but I still aim to be creative while tapping into my own personal style. (No need to pair frumpy and pregnant together!)

One of the first items I purchased was these bright pink pants.  I bought them at an incredible price, hoping they weren't too bold to wear over and over again.  The pop of color is so much fun that I'm challenging myself to find variations on how to wear them.  Not tired of them yet! 



pink jeans: skinny leg maternity pants from Motherhood Maternity online that I scored cheap in a BOGO clearance + free shipping deal! 
gray polka dot t-shirt: from Motherhood Maternity online in the same amazing sale
black t-shirt: part of a BumpStart 2-pack from Motherhood Maternity retail store 
denim jacket: non-maternity Mossimo from Target  (old)
canvas flats: Levi Strauss for Walmart (old, but similar to these)
white necklace: vintage on Etsy


A versatile item in my maternity wardrobe is this black cotton dress.  I can dress it up or down, match it with almost any color accessory, and adapt it for warm or cool weather. 

coral striped boyfriend cardigan: non-maternity Mossimo from Target (old)
dress: Old Navy Maternity from ThredUp {affiliate link}


Black is such a flattering color! Though it wasn't my intention, you can barely tell I'm pregnant in the outfit below...

black t-shirt: part of a BumpStart 2-pack from Motherhood Maternity retail store
black pants: Motherhood Maternity retail store (similar to these)
scarf: Target (a gift)

...until I turn to the side!


Or take these photos from the 5K I ran on Saturday.  The baby belly is hiding amongst all the black clothing! As a side note, work-out wear is one area where I have been able to stretch my dollars.  (Pun intended.) I already refuse to buy expensive gear, but I've also been determined to take advantage of the elasticity and stick with non-maternity sizes. 

black performance capris: non-maternity Champion from Walmart
black perfomance shirt: non maternity Danskin Now from Walmart
black performance hoodie: non-maternity Champion from Walmart


I was willing to invest in jeans, though.  At first I tried to pinch my pennies, but when I stumbled on an in-store A Pea in the Pod BOGO sale on denim, Brian convinced me that it was worth the money.  (The online price for a single pair of jeans listed below is acless than what I paid for one pair in-store.)  He was right!  I wear these jeans almost daily and have gotten every cent worth of wear out of them...and I still have three months to go!


striped cardigan: non-maternity from Ross (old)
aqua t-shirt: non-maternity George brand from Walmart (old)
skinny jeans: A Pea in the Pod from Motherhood Maternity retail store (similar to these)
canvas flats: Levi Strauss for Walmart (old, but similar to these)


These are the same jeans.  I love that they have just enough stretch to be comfortable but not too much that they get saggy.  The stretch also allows me to cuff them for a new look. 

mini-polka dot t-shirt: Liz Lange Maternity from consignment store
skinny jeans: A Pea in the Pod from Motherhood Maternity retail store (similar to these)
turquoise sunglasses: Five Below store (old)

I took advantage of the warm day to wear sandals and paint my toes to match my shirt.  Might as well have cute toe nails while it is still relatively easy to paint them myself.  (Even though my almost-13-year-old son told me, "Toes can't be cute.")


gold sandals: Target (old)

The chilly weather arrived (at least temporarily) over the weekend so some days are more suited to a cardigan and boots.  


cardigan: non-maternity Merona from Target (old)
paisley blouse: Motherhood Maternity from ThredUp{affiliate link} 
skinny aqua belt: Goodwill
skinny jeans: A Pea in the Pod from Motherhood Maternity retail store (similar to these)
boots: Old Navy (old)



As I enter this colder season, I'm anticipating the use of scarfs and tights and sweaters, for both warmth and variety.  Oh yeah.  And I'm going to have to figure out a way to make my coat stretch over my girth for at least a couple months.  ~smile~

purple and gray striped dress: H&M Mama from consignment store
black sparkle tights: non-maternity George brand from Walmart (old)
patent leather shoes: Piper and Blue (clothing swap)


Linking up with...

pleated poppy




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Friday, October 16, 2015

My Guilty Pleasures


Dark Chocolate Peanut M & Ms'
 
People magazine

Podcasts
(like this one)

SURVIVOR

  scary movies

reading in the bathtub

***
What are yours?

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Pregnant Food

On Sunday, my mom reminded me of the question that went around Facebook a few weeks ago.  It said:

If you had to name your baby after your biggest pregnancy craving, what would his/her name be? 

With this pregnancy, my baby girl would be named Chipotle Burrito because that has been my most intense single craving.  The steak, the cheese, the veggies...  it's a wonder I've indulged less than a handful of times over the course of the past 25 weeks! 

On a practical, everyday scale, though, what I crave is protein and vegetables.  I even crave foods that I don't love in my regular, non-pregnant life.  Take tomato soup, for example.  Not a fan.  

But I am pregnant and this recipe for creamy tomato soup looked divine.  I cooked an  even-less processed version by making my own tomato sauce with a can of fire-roasted tomatoes, but it still took less than ten minutes from start to finish.  I made a small batch, enough for 2 lunches.  This was Day 1: 


The second day, I made  a grilled cheese sandwich on homemade sourdough bread to dip into my soup.   Be still, my heart!!

Since vegetables aren't exclusively for meals, I made a big pan of roasted veggies to keep in the refrigerator for snacks.   I used turnips, onions, sweet potatoes, carrots, sweet peppers, and celery, seasoned with garlic, thyme, and rosemary. 



The kids and I went on a picnic the next day. While they looked forward to eating fun food like cheese sticks and PB and J,  I was more than-a-little excited to open up my little container when it was time to eat! (That wasn't all I ate, but it was the most delicious.)



I crave a wholesome breakfast now, too. A quick grab-and-go breakfast can't handle my appetite. On Saturday, I made slow-cooker apple cinnamon steel-cut oatmeal, then put it in the refrigerator for the rest of the week.  In the morning, I can reheat a portion with a handful of raisins, a few splashes of milk and a drizzle of pure maple syrup.  It keeps me full all morning.  In fact, I ate a bowl before church on Sunday morning and it staved off my hunger through the entire service! 




In the interest of full disclosure, you should know that even though I am not craving sugar, I haven't stayed avoided it altogether.  I picked up 5-Minute Mug Cakes: Nearly 100 Yummy Microwave Cakes{affiliate link} at the library and we've sampled three recipes in the same number of weeks. The kids tried funfetti cake, we made hot cocoa cakes together as a family, and Brian and I sampled flourless chocolate cakes on an at-home date night.

 
Sometimes family memories and bonding...and cake...come before nutrition.







Monday, October 12, 2015

Another Fishy Tale


Once upon a time, I told the story of Maddie's pet fish and how we did not achieve a happily ever after.  At the time, were living in a small townhome so she stuck to mothering plants for awhile.  In the spring of 2011, we we bought our house and Maddie again asked for a pet.  Within the year we welcomed a dog and in another year, a cat.

Early this year, Maddie wanted to be a plant mother again so she started a catnip plant from tiny, tiny seeds.  It sprouted and grew and began to thrive.  She had to transplant it to larger pots three times!  It even won first place at the county fair this summer.  


In July, a friend asked if she could gift Maddie a fish for her birthday.  I hesitated initially because our original fish project had ended so sadly, but we decided it was time for Maddie to try her hand at fish mothering again.


Maddie was surprised and delighted.  She deliberated on a name for her new betta and settled on Pipp (to compliment our dog named Finn, and our cats, Dott and Tigger).  The afternoon after Pipp came to live with us, Maddie spent hours in a bean bag chair in front of the tank, reading pamphlets and information on how to care for her new pet.  

Pipp is a well-loved, well-cared for fish.  And we are hopeful for a happy ending this time.




The End.

Saturday, October 3, 2015

This Year's Bible Memory Work


We began using the memory box system over three years ago to help us memorize Scripture, and to aid us in continuing to remember and meditate on it.  This year, we are adding a few new passages to our box.  We started with Matthew 5: 3-12. While Ben and Owen took to it right away and can fire off the whole thing in their sleep, the rest of us are having a bit of difficulty keeping all the verses straight!  Thankfully, we'll be coming back to it frequently as we review it every odd day of the week.  

Our current daily scripture is Romans 12:12 and later this year, we will begin I Thessalonians 5:12-24.

These new passages join the many other passages we have learned over the years: 

§  Psalm 23 
§  Psalm 100 
§  Isaiah 30:21  
§  Daniel 7:9 
§  Matthew 5:44 
§  The Lord’s Prayer 
§  Luke 2: 1-20 
§  Luke 6:31 
§  John 3:16-17 
§  John 6:35 
§  John 10:10 
§  John 15:1 
§  Ephesians 4:32 
§  Philippians 2:14-15 
§  James 1:12 
§  James 3:17-18 
§  Revelation 1:8 
§  Revelation 22:16 
§  The Books of the Old and New Testament 


In October 2013, during my 31 Days, 31 Printables series, I shared a set of Scripture memory flash cards which included some of the above verses.  Use the free printable 3x5 cards to begin your own memory box!

Bonus: Check my Facebook page tomorrow to watch Alaine, age 5, recite Revelation 22:16.  Update: To view the video, click here.

Does your family memorize scripture together? 
Have you found any ways to make it fun or methods to aid in memorization?
Are you like me in that you struggle to remember while your kids grasp it right away?
   





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