SHE is here!

Introducing Isabelle Rose!

Introducing Isabelle Rose

Quick Stats:

  • 4/30 = date of birth (ironically, the day I scheduled a post about still being pregnant)
  • 41 weeks and 5 days = time it took her to finish ‘cooking’
  • 36 hours = length of labor (ending in a c-section)
  • 9lbs 15oz = weight (how did she fit?! I guess my bump really was that big!)
  • 22 inches = length
  • Eating & sleeping = favorite activities, both of which she excels at

The way she came into the world was a bit difficult but so, so satisfying (for me). Details to come later, of course.

Thanks for all the well wishes!

Posted in motherhood, pregnancy | Tagged , , | 19 Comments

Why I’m Still Pregnant

Going over 41.5 weeks pregnant is not for the weak of spirit, let me tell you.

Not only am I physically uncomfortable (oh hey, contractions every 10 minutes for days and days and days) but I’m getting mentally tired, too.

Everyone wants to know where the baby is. (Answer: swimming away in my womb, happy as can be! There’s no way this little guy/gal got out without me noticing.)

Alternate answer: This baby hasn’t been born because labor hasn’t started yet – simple as that!

The thing is, most people I know consider Baby Beni to be very late. But I do not.

Baby Beni is going to come when (s)he is ready, and my body knows what it’s doing. I was made for this. The average woman carries her first baby for 41 weeks and 1 day, and I’m only a few days over that. I would barely consider that ‘late’.

Raise Good Humans

(mug)

I think with so many OBs inducing patients, we (as a society) assume that moms just won’t/can’t go many days past her due date. However, my OB and I agree that induction is not medically necessary for me at this point in time. Plus, I’m very excited to be trying for a VBAC, so we won’t be scheduling a c-section at this point, either.

I’m very aware that the vast majority of women who have a c-section decide to schedule one for subsequent births (and I always find it puzzling that so many people assume a woman must schedule a c-section if they’ve already had one). However, I absolutely hated my first c-section and recovery and am dedicated to doing everything in my power not to repeat that experience unless it becomes medically necessary. Does it mean that a c-section won’t happen? Of course not. But I won’t be choosing that procedure at this point.

Our current birth plan is to go with the flow and monitor the baby frequently. As long as both of our bodies are tolerating this pregnancy well, we’ll be patiently waiting for labor to start… and then who knows what might happen?! The goal is to end this journey with a healthy baby and a healthy mom and hopefully some empowering memories.

I realize that everyone has a different approach to the end of pregnancy, but Tim’s and my approach is to let things happen as naturally as possible and with as few interventions as we need. This goal isn’t a guarantee (because there definitely are no guarantees when it comes to labor and delivery!), but no matter what unfolds in the next few days, my ultimate goal is to know/feel that I did the best I could for both myself and my baby – which is all I can ask of myself!

So yes, I’m still pregnant. Very pregnant. I feel a little impatient and overwhelmed, but also very at peace. People keep commenting that I seem content for someone who is almost 42 weeks pregnant, and all I can say about this is that I’m not in a rush and I know that God has a plan for Baby Beni’s arrival. I feel best knowing that Baby Beni will pick his/her own birth date, and I cannot wait to know when that date is!

(But seriously, baby o’ mine, I am ready to meet you! Come out already!)

Posted in pregnancy | Tagged | 3 Comments

All I’ve been thinking about lately is pregnancy and food. (Sponsored)

Thank you Safeway for sponsoring this post. Check out the new Signature family of brands from Safeway, with more than 4,000 Signature products available and a 100% money-back guarantee.

Lately my food choices have been made based on two criteria: indulging myself and convenience. I wish I could say that it’s because I’m very, very pregnant, but really this is kind of how I always make food decisions.

Tuxedo Cookies from Safeway

Oh hey, lopsided bump! (Note: this belly was not formed solely by these cookies.)

Domestic goddess I certainly am not.

When I was pregnant with Clara the only two cravings I had were chocolate and root beer, and I’m craving the same sweet snacks with Baby Beni! (Does this mean Beni’s a girl?!)

Dark Chocolate from Safeway

Safeway invites shoppers to join in the conversation by sharing  Signature stories, photos and videos online using #MySignatureMoments.

I also crave carbs. Well, I guess sugar is a carb and we already covered that, but seriously, any and all things carbs are the only food items that sound good to me on a consistent basis. A salad? Not so much. A dish of pasta? Pass me the bowl again! Bread and butter? All day every day, thanks.

Sometimes I try to trick myself by adding veggies in with carbs.

Artichokes and Pasta from Safeway

One of our favorite go-to recipes is pasta with artichoke pesto. Get ready for this complex recipe:

  1. Boil pasta per instructions on the box.
  2. In a food processor combine artichoke hearts, lemon juice, Parmesan, and walnuts, and process for 30 seconds. Slowly drizzle in olive oil until mixture becomes a thick paste. Transfer pesto to a large bowl. Season, to taste, with salt and pepper.
  3. Put pesto on pasta.

DONE! Although, to make this a bit more interesting I would advise adding in some protein or veggies, otherwise it can be pretty bland.

Some other current favorite recipes include…

This mushroom marsala pasta.

This quiche. (I modify by lowering the amount of butter and cheddar)

These overnight oats. (Chocolate Peanut Butter is my current favorite)

This stir-fry.

Bonus: Any of these (minus the stir-fry) would be great to bring to a family who just welcomed a new baby. I got a lot of lasagna when I had Clara, and while I love lasagna, it would also have been nice to get some breakfast foods, snacks, some fresh food, or something a bit different. If you know someone who just welcomed a baby, I recommend thinking about bringing over cookies, banana bread, muffins, salad, etc. Freezer meals make sense if you know the family may be getting a lot of food at once or if you’re dropping off food before the baby comes in preparation for his/her arrival, but I actually preferred fresh food that we didn’t need to freeze, and we ate most meals we received right away.

Plus, let’s not forget the power of a good snack. Breastfeeding moms require a ton of snacks and with a newborn + a toddler running around, I plan on whipping up a few batches of easy-to-eat snacks so that I have some sustenance with as little fuss as possible. Now if someone else was to bring me these snacks, I’d be very appreciative. (hint, hint)

That’s just my two cents.

Dark Chocolate from Safeway

Dark chocolate is a healthy snack… right? I think it has good stuff in it. If it doesn’t, let’s just not discuss it.

Tim and I shop at Safeway for a majority of our grocery needs and their new Signature line includes more than 4,000 items – from coffee to juice, soup to cereal, fresh produce, and delicious prepared foods to trusted home staples.

If you want to win $25 to Safeway (and who wouldn’t?!) you can do that here!

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Happy shopping / eating! (Mainly eating.)

I was selected for this opportunity as a member of Clever Girls and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.

Posted in eating, recipes | 1 Comment

Taking My Driving Test… Again.

Do you know what I never thought I would need to do again? Take a driving test. I thought that taking a driving test was a one-time thing I would need to get through at the age of 16 and then I would never need to go through the whole (stressful) experience again.

I was wrong.

driving test

Last week I looked at my Illinois license and realized that it expired on my 30th birthday, which was two weeks ago. Well, I didn’t think this was any big deal because I assumed I would just go to the Washington DMV and they would say “oh, your license is barely expired so we’ll just give you a new one.”

This didn’t happen.

Instead, after hours of waiting at the DMV, I learned that an expired out-of-state license is basically worthless. And the DMV worker didn’t seem at all sympathetic when she told me I would need to take the knowledge and skills test all over again. SAY WHAT?!

I had two choices: attempt to get a license immediately (before Baby Beni arrives) or wait until Baby Beni is here and worry about it in a few months when I have more time. I decided to get it done ASAP so I have one less thing to worry about over the next few weeks. Plus, I became convinced I would somehow get arrested and end up delivering Baby Beni in jail – just like in OITNB. Not that I’m dramatic or anything.

And that’s how I found myself reading a 160 page brochure on the driving laws of Washington. And then taking the actual driving test. At almost 41 weeks pregnant.

I never had to parallel park to get my license the first time, but I sure as heck did this time (Thank goodness Tim taught me how last year!)

In the end I passed both tests easily (phew) and after spending another few hours at the DMV, I got my Washington license. But seriously, what an awful way to spend a few days!

From this experience I learned…

  • Not to let my license expire. EVER.
  • The driving test isn’t nearly as scary as it was 14 years ago.
  • It isn’t a good idea to wait 6 months after moving to get a new state license.
  • I’m not as organized as I thought I was.
  • Having a huge baby bump doesn’t get any favors/exceptions from DMV employees.

Overall, the procrastination in getting a new state license cost me hours and hours of my life and was generally stressful and also forced me to get an ID picture taken at 41 weeks pregnant, which is not when I look my best, let me tell you.

So learn from my mistake, check the expiration date on your license and make sure you stay a legal driver! (Or brush up on your parallel parking, just in case.)

Posted in being an adult, imperfection | Tagged | 17 Comments

The Waiting Game (41 Weeks Pregnant)

Well, I was hoping not to see the 41 week mark with Baby Beni, but here we are! I can’t say I’m surprised, though.

My water broke at 41+2 with Clara, but I think my due date for her was off by a few days, so I actually think this is the longest I’ve been pregnant. Hooray?

Honestly, I’m still doing very well okay. People seem surprised when I tell them this, but I truly feel as good as I think I can expect to be feeling. I’m relatively comfortable still, and I’m keeping very busy with Clara and social plans. Even though I’m excited to meet our little one, I’m also very happy living in the present and not anticipating the future. (I really think that God gifts me patience in pregnancy that I don’t possess in my ‘normal’ non-pregnant state, because I don’t know how else to explain why I feel like I could calmly stay pregnant forever even when it’s uncomfortable!)

Thoughts at 41 Weeks Pregnant

When I was nearing my due date with Clara, I tried a lot of natural induction methods to get things moving. Nothing worked, and this time I’m not going to spend my energy even trying. I’m convinced that the baby will come when the baby comes. I’m resting and enjoying myself (and trying to take some of my own advice) instead of focusing on trying to evict a baby from my womb. I may try acupuncture this week, but that’s more for relaxation purposes than anything else.

The problem is that everyone else seems very preoccupied with the status and progress of my womb / potential labor. After 40 weeks the doctor’s appointments tend to get a bit stressful because we suddenly start talking a lot about what we’ll do eventually if this baby doesn’t start making his/her way out on his/her own. Once the words induction and scheduled c-section start getting thrown around I’m tempted to cover my ears and run. I dread going to my ‘overdue’ OB appointments. It’s like everything is stress-free and easy for 9+ months and then sh*t starts getting real. (I will say, though, that I have an awesome OB who is very supportive of VBACs, so this is already a much different experience than I had in Chicago and I’m thankful that these stressful appointments aren’t nearly as awful as they could be with a less supportive doctor.)

And then there are the constant “any baby news?!” check-ins from friends and family… but I don’t mind those – I actually think it’s nice that so many people are thinking about us!

I know I’m getting big because strangers have gone from the “you look so cute!” comments to the “wow, when are you due?!” comments. And I personally love telling people that I’m a week past my due date. Ohhhhh the looks I receive! So good. It’s like people half expect me to start pushing out a baby right in front of them, which I don’t intend to do.

Anyway, my point behind this post is to say that I’m still here, still pregnant, still talking about pregnancy (as if I could think about anything else at this point), and I don’t need to be pitied because I’m enjoying myself and living my ‘normal’ life – just with a huge baby inside my uterus. 

(But please pray that Baby Beni comes before 42 weeks. Thanks.)

Posted in pregnancy | Tagged | 12 Comments