9 Weeks + 1 Day

>> Monday, November 23, 2015

Ah! So, I keep saying I don’t want to write about my pregnancy and then I only write about my pregnancy. (Sorry!) It’s just shocking me how well it’s going after so much heartache this year, and I guess it’s really all I can think about right now (well, along with some mounting deadlines -- but this stuff is more fun).

So, quick update today on my 9 week + 1 day appointment.

Stephen went with me, and it started with an ultrasound. My usual tech was on vacation, but I was able to get one of the women who did a lot of my ultrasounds with Ada. She’s really nice. The thing that really struck me about this appointment is that I wasn’t seeing many of the nurses/doctors/etc. I’ve seen in the past year throughout all our bad news. So, today I ended up having to repeat our recurrent pregnancy loss story to a lot of people. Which sucked.

They were all like: “Three in a year?!”
And we were like: “Yup...”
And they were like: “Did you find out why?”
And we were like: “Nope, but progesterone is apparently our miracle drug."

Anyway, my tech got right to business. I almost fell off the exam table because I couldn’t believe how big the bean has gotten in just two weeks (here’s my last appointment). I know he or she is only the size of a grape, but most of my ultrasounds this year have only shown tiny grains of rice. I guess most surprising and exciting of all is that the fetus (it’s a fetus now!) MOVED. A lot. It actually did a full-on jig in there.

For the first time in a long time, I believe we might be bringing home a baby in June.

The measurement was spot on at 9 weeks and 1 day. The heart rate is 162 beats per minute. Everything looks great. I met with my new midwife and told her about all of my many concerns, including my fear of getting irritable uterus* again. I feel like working with her is going to be really good. I didn’t like my midwife earlier in the year and she left the practice anyway -- so it was a good timing, I suppose.

I have a bunch of blood work I need to get. Otherwise, my next appointment is at 12 weeks and 2 days when we get to do the NT screening (another ultrasound). Then I have a midwife appointment the following week (I didn’t have an exam today, that will be next time). We have decided to tell Ada after the 12 week scan. We had considered doing it today, but I just want to make sure we’re out of the riskiest part. Even though everything looks perfect, I know still that anything can happen at any stage.

The only TMI thing is that my cervix is quite low. I only know this because I take the suppositories twice a day, so I’ve gotten quite familiar more familiar than I ever wanted to be with my anatomy. I guess this is because I have a retroverted uterus. It points toward my spine versus my belly button, so the cervix is in a different direction to. Just like with Ada, this weird uterus thing should right itself when the baby gets bigger and heavier, likely by the second trimester. It’s mostly annoying and causes back cramping sometimes.

* SPEAKING of irritable uterus. When I was having the ultrasound, the tech said “oh, you see that curve on your gestational sac? That’s a braxton hicks contraction!” And I was like “AHHHH NOT ALREADY!” I know it’s normal to have them all throughout pregnancy. I’m just hoping it won’t be quite as debilitating this time around. Only time will tell.

I feel like I need to pinch myself. My big thing this week is getting beyond the 9 weeks 4 days point (Thanksgiving day). That’s when I had my D&C, and I think it’s going to be cathartic to just move past this date. Strangely enough, my symptoms with this pregnancy have been so incredibly similar to that pregnancy -- it’s crazy. I am looking forward to not comparing the two pregnancies anymore.

So, there’s my update. Thanks for reading. Thanks for your good vibes.

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Thanksgiving 2015

>> Friday, November 20, 2015

So, Thanksgiving is already presenting some challenges this year. Like, I seriously don’t know how I’m going to cook or if I’ll even want to eat the food we make. Last night I braved the kitchen -- ginger ale in hand -- and quickly melted together some black bean and cheese quesadillas. I had to eat mine immediately or I would have lost it. But it felt amazing to cook. Yay!

I figure if I choose some really good and relatively neutral staples for Thanksgiving, we’ll be safe. Mashed potatoes sound delicious. Stuffing is full of bready bread. I still have a taste for sweets, so making some sort of chocolate dessert will work. Not entirely convinced I’ll eat a vegetable on the side, so that might be Stephen’s job. I think the hard part, really, will be the main course.

I have no idea what to do.

But here’s what’s on our menu so far:

What are you vegetarians and vegans doing for a main course this year? Anything really simple that would balance out our current menu? We definitely need some more protein, but I can’t stomach tofu, eggs, or lentils. It’ll probably be a carboliscious day, but that’s OK.

I’d love any and all suggestions!

In other news, I signed up for Periscope (neverhomemaker). I have no idea how often I’ll use it, but it looks interesting. The whole LIVE part of it is kind of freaky. I’ve actually received several requests to do more videos in the last couple weeks, so I’d like to start working on another day-in-the-life video and -- hopefully eventually -- some pregnancy and everyday vlogs.

PS: Check out my latest article: 11 Thanksgiving Recipes You Can Make In Your Crock Pot!

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The Rabbit Who Wants to Fall Asleep // Review

>> Thursday, November 19, 2015

Ada is now four years old. And I wish I could say that our bedtime routine is down to a science. The thing is, with every new stage and every new age, we have faced different challenges. When Ada was a tiny newborn, it was figuring out why she was crying. As an older baby, she’d wake in the middle of the night and not want to go back to sleep. The toddler years were a mix of good and bad, solid months of shut-eye were interspersed with months of frequent wakings and bedtime resistance.

At the preschool stage, it’s the willpower that’s the most difficult to overcome. Ada has definite opinions on if and when she’s tired. She’ll flat out tell us she’s not going to sleep. Or she’ll get all cozy and then have us up in her room 10,000 more times before she’ll actually go to sleep. It’s an ongoing battle, and I won’t lie: There are nights we just dread bedtime.

And we even have a consistent routine!

BlogHer and Random House Children's Books gave me the opportunity to review The Rabbit Who Wants to Fall Asleep -- #1 International Bestseller / New York Times bestseller -- by Carl-Johan Forssén Ehrlin and illustrated by Irina Maununen. I had actually read a few articles (including this one on HuffPost) and reviews of this book in the last several months -- so I knew I just had to see what it was all about.

My first impression of the book is that it was super cute and quite long. Ada’s attention span is good, but I didn’t know if we’d make it through the whole thing. But I quickly learned that’s not the point. What I found is that there’s a method of reading the text that helps lull your kids to sleep. In fact, I’ve read that some kids can only make it a few pages without falling asleep!

For example, anything that’s bolded is meant to be read in a strong, emphasized tone. The stuff in italics? Read it quietly and slowly. You can definitely pick up on the calm with the rhythm and cadence of the words. The author has even described the text as a verbal way to rock your child to sleep. I totally see that and feel that when I read it.

Heck -- I get tired!

Does it work?

It definitely helps. Ada didn’t magically fall asleep while we were reading the book or anything like that (I never thought she would -- she can’t even sleep if we’re in the room). But what it does is assist with is that difficult transition between waking and sleeping. The whole calming phase.

I love how the book puts Ada in the story. The nights when we read the book, Ada didn’t ask us to come back up after we turned the lights out. So, I’d consider that a success! It’s certainly a book worth trying and would make an excellent gift for your friends with younger children.

Is bedtime a nightmare at your house? Tell me about it in the comments below for a chance to win a $100 Visa gift card and a copy of The Rabbit Who Wants to Fall Asleep.

Visit RabbitGoToSleep.com to check out more about the book. You can also tweet to @randomhousekids using #RabbitGoToSleep.

Entry Instructions:

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  1. Leave a comment in response to the sweepstakes prompt on this post
  2. Tweet (public message) about this promotion; including exactly the following unique term in your tweet message: #SweepstakesEntry" and "#RabbitGoToSleep"; and leave the URL to that tweet in a comment on this post
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This giveaway is open to US Residents age 18 or older (or nineteen (19) years of age or older in Alabama and Nebraska). Winners will be selected via random draw, and will be notified by e-mail.

The notification email will come directly from BlogHer via the sweeps@blogher email address. You will have 2 business days to respond; otherwise a new winner will be selected.

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