Fetal Classes

I finally called Ann Pomeroy about taking Lamaze classes.  The current 4 week session had already started.  I set up a make-up class and moved the Hypnobirthing classes to a later date since they’re both on Mondays.

Ivan and I went to the Lamaze class at Ann’s house on June 7, 2014.  We learned Relaxation Technique, Paced Breathing, symptoms preceding labor, what happens 2 weeks before and what happens 24-48 hours before.  Also, we got a sheet with light exercises to do which has stick figure illustrations of how to perform them.

Light exercises

The relaxation technique is where you isolate certain body parts and make them relax.  I’m not sure why I was having problems with it.  I think because I’m used to hypnosis and getting an induction and gradually relaxing my body.  I’m sure with practice I will get this technique down.

We went to our second Lamaze class on June 9, 2014.  There were two other couples and one of the couple’s doula.  In class, we learned Modified Paced Breathing and things to help with back pain during labor.

Modified Paced Breathing is where you smile and make a short He sound while nothing from the breast up moves.

One of the back pain relievers is Slow Dancing with Paced Breathing.  Ivan found it silly that Ann played music while the couples slow danced.

On June 10, 2014, Ivan and I went to Dr. Wilkes’ office for my fetal echocardiogram.

Erica was our sonographer again.  It’s always great to see the baby on the ultrasound.  He was moving around a lot since he’s stubborn.  She took some pictures of things.

Baby at 27 weeks

A few minutes later, the Italian pediatric cardiologist came in.  Erica moved the probe to get a good view of the heart for the fetal echo.  Dr. Acherman kept saying Good, good.  Ivan thought he was evaluating a pizza, not our baby.  The doctor said everything looked good.

We saw Dr. Wilkes a few minutes later.  He said that the baby was a week behind in size.  He said it wasn’t anything to worry about though.  He told us that the baby’s heart looked good.  He asked if the baby kicked a lot and I said yes.  He said it’s good that if he kicks a lot since it means he’s happy, if his movements decrease it could mean that something is wrong.  He said we would do another ultrasound in 6 weeks.

That night, Ivan and I went to our first BabyCare class.  Our teacher was a lady named Jane.  Half of the 2 hour class was filling out paperwork which wasn’t very exciting.  The class is free as part of the Parenting Project run by the Clark County Department of Family Services .

The last part of the class was getting handouts and Jane talking about the subject.  We received handouts on Jaundice, Colic and Shaken Baby Syndrome.  The class is pretty boring, but has lots of good information.  We will be going to next week’s class since Swaddling and Diapering will be covered.  But, I’m not sure we will continue going since it’s pretty painful sitting in the class the whole time.

I’ve been getting headaches at the top of my head and the back of my head.  I’m not sure if it’s related to my eyes since I have dry eye and eye allergy.  It could be the pregnancy or both.

I saw my midwife Kat on June 17, 2014.  I told her about the leg cramps I had before.  She checked out my Calcium Magnesium pill and thought I wasn’t getting enough of the magnesium from the pill.  She recommended a more natural pill to take.

We went through the list of things I need for the birth and the birth kit I need to buy.

Kat pricked my finger to get drops of my blood.  She tested my iron.  My iron is low, so she recommended taking spirulina powder everyday.

My fingers have been getting more numb and sometimes it hurts.  I’ve been wearing the wrist brace for the carpal tunnel syndrome.  I’ve been massaging doTERRA’s Deep Blue Rub on my fingers since Shannondoah gave me some.  It smells similar to Vicks and makes my fingers tingly.

I put the spirulina powder in a cup of water and it’s green and made me think of the swamp monster from Scooby Doo.  Ivan tasted it and said it just tastes like green vegetables.  I thought it had a gross aftertaste.  I tried to drink it while plugging my nose, but I still got the nasty aftertaste.  Ivan put it in a smoothie and at the end the smoothie was slimy.  It’s best to use cocoa powder or anything with a strong flavor to cover the strong taste of the spirulina.

I haven’t been feeling as good since more things have been bugging me.  It can be hard to stay positive especially when you’re hormonal and you cry so easily.  I am getting scared again about giving birth and from hearing about people’s experiences.

Ivan and I attended our last Lamaze class.  We learned a lot of breathing exercises.  We will have to practice and hope that we can remember it when I’m in labor.

I saw my doula Shannondoah on June 25, 2014 for my hypnomassage.  I told her about my fears and during my hypnomassage, she had me light a fire and put my fears into the fire.

The baby kicks and hits a lot more now.  His kicks are getting harder.  He seems to hit or kick when he’s hungry and right before I’m about to go to bed.

Today, I saw Kat for my prenatal visit.  Everything is good.  She recommended other iron rich things like yellow dock and blackstrap molasses.

Jen at 30 weeks and 2 days

I’m now 30 weeks and 2 days.  I’m getting really big and it feels like I’m smuggling a bowling ball under my shirt.

Vivid Numbness

Every now and then I feel bloated and I get gassy more often now.

Being pregnant, brings vivid dreams.  I usually don’t remember them a few minutes after waking up though.

On May 20, 2014, I saw my midwife Kathya for my prenatal visit.  Everything was good.  I told her about my middle back pain.  She thought that I needed a better bra for support.  I also told her about the numbness in my hands which has been numb during the day sometimes.  She recommended going swimming.

Chef Ivan listening to the heartbeat of our baby

Ivan took a break from cooking to hear the baby’s heartbeat.

I started getting pelvis pain a few days later.  I started doing squats again which helps ease the pain.

On May 24, 2014, the numbness, tingling and sometimes aching in my hands has been happening all day.  I was looking in my pregnancy book for numbness and found carpal tunnel syndrome which is quite common in pregnancy.  I did research on the internet and it described the first three fingers being numb and half numbness in the fourth finger.  That’s how my fingers felt.

I saw my doula Shannondoah for my hypnomassage on May 27, 2014.  I told her that I had carpal tunnel syndrome.  She thought I had a pinched nerve which may have contributed to it.  She really worked out my shoulders and neck which were really knotted up.  She suggested a warm rag on my shoulders 15 minutes a day and sticking my hands in ice cold water.

I put my hands in the ice cold water a couple times later that day which was really cold and somewhat painful.  It seemed to make my pain even more intense.  I may try this one again.

In the middle of the night, I woke up since my hands hurt and I was crying since I wanted it to go away and I wanted to sleep which woke Ivan up.

My fingers feel really swollen (even though they’re not) and big.  Sometimes, I feel pins and needles like when a body part is falling asleep.  It’s harder to do simple tasks like hooking my bra or cutting food.  It can be painful pressing on things like a soap dispenser or a garlic press.  I hope my fingers don’t swell up so big that I look like I have sausages for fingers.

I went online and found hand exercises that might help with the carpal tunnel syndrome.  I’ve been doing these exercises.  This video claims to work, but I haven’t tried it yet.  I found an article on natural remedies.  If the pain gets worse, I may try wearing a wrist brace.

Ivan makes sure I still eat healthy.  Here’s one of our lunches of a tasty Garlic Shrimp.

Garlic Shrimp

I’m so lucky that Ivan cooks and he makes me stay healthy.  Every now and then I will treat myself to a burger or a sandwich with bacon.

I saw Dr. Simoncelli for my chiropractic adjustment on May 30, 2014.  I told him I had carpal tunnel syndrome which he said was common during pregnancy.  He adjusted my shoulders, neck and back, but nothing for the carpal tunnel.

On the morning of May 31st, I woke up with a very sharp pain in my right calf.  I was moaning in pain which woke Ivan up.  I was massaging it, but it was tightening up and hurting me so it was hard to properly massage it.  I had Ivan massage it.  Calf pain and Leg cramps are also common during pregnancy.  I massaged it with oil a few times that day.  I was limping.

It’s become harder to get comfortable while sleeping.  I tried the body pillow again, but I’m not sure where to put my hands and it seems too big.  So, I’ve just been using the pillow between my legs and my legs bent.  If I lay on my right side, sometimes I get a pain in my ear.  I switch to the left side, but my shoulder feels uncomfortable.

My legs felt numb during the night and when I woke up on June 3, 2014, I got calf pain on the left side.  I had Ivan massage it since it kept tightening up.  It was painful, but not as intense as the other morning.

I still feel the baby hitting or kicking me which always makes me smile, but sometimes it surprises me.  I think he hits me more when he’s hungry.  LIke he’s checking his watch and says Come on, it’s time to eat!

On June 4, 2014, I went to see my chiropractor Dr. Simoncelli.  I told him about my leg cramps.  He said the baby takes away minerals from me.  He recommended drinking Himalayan salt with water.  Take 1/4 teaspoon of Himalayan salt and put it in a 1/2 cup of water and stir.  Drink the salt water and then follow with a cup of water.  I’m definitely going to do this every day and hope the leg cramps don’t come back.

I’m going to revert back to my original due date.  So, I am now 26 weeks and 4 days.

Jen at 26 weeks and 4 days

As you can tell, I’m getting really big.  It seems what annoys me about pregnancy now are carpal tunnel syndrome and calf pain.

Moving Anatomy

In the morning of April 29, 2014, we went to Desert Perinatal Associates to see Dr. Wilkes which is the doctor who works with my midwife Kathya

We were called in to see the genetic counselor Tracy first.  She talked about the amniocentesis.  I asked if there was a blood test instead since my friend Carrie told me about it.  She told us about two tests.  One is called the Panorama test which is a blood test that I take.  The other test (which I can’t remember the name) takes both parent’s blood.  Ivan doesn’t like getting his blood drawn, so he thought I should do the Panorama test.  I don’t mind getting my blood drawn at all.

Ivan and I went back to the waiting room.  I used the toilet while waiting to be called.

My name was called and we went to a room.  The lady asked if I needed to use the restroom.  I said I already went.  Conveniently, there was a restroom that connected to the room we were in. 

The lady was getting everything ready for the ultrasound.  I asked if there were going to do a transvaginal ultrasound.  She said the regular and a transvaginal one were being done today.  I asked Is the transvaginal necessary? and she said it was to measure my cervix.  She gave me a sheet and said to undress from the waist down.  She said the doctor would be along in a few minutes.

Jen waiting to do her anatomy ultrasound

Dr. Wilkes’ nurse came in.  She is a tall, pretty blonde.  She was young probably in her mid 20’s.  She did the ultrasound to check the baby’s anatomy.  She said the baby was stubborn because he kept moving around.  My family is quite stubborn, so that makes sense.

Baby's Nose and Lips

We saw his spine and his nose and mouth.  She kept pointing out things and we just had to nod since we weren’t really sure what we were looking at, while she was a trained professional.  She asked if we knew if it was a boy or girl.  Ivan said Yes, it’s a boy and she confirmed that she did indeed see a third leg.

Ultrasound for a baby boy

She asked about the due date.  I told her that I got another ultrasound and they said I was 9 days earlier.  They were still basing my original due date of Sept. 7th.  She said that the baby was 13 oz which was right on track.  His heartbeat was 161 bpm. 

She printed a picture of the baby with it’s arms up and put pictures of the ultrasound onto a CD for us to take home.

Next, she did the transvaginal ultrasound.  I read an article that a lady sued the doctor because she felt like was being raped when she got the transvaginal ultrasound.  It’s not anything to be scared about.  A probe which is covered in a condom and with gel on top is placed inside the vagina.  She checked my cervix.  The ultrasound only lasted a few minutes and it doesn’t hurt at all.  She told me that Dr. Wilkes would be in to talk to us soon.

Dr. Wilkes came in and sat down.  He had the brightest sneakers on that you could probably see from 2 miles away.  He was the happiest doctor I’ve ever met.  He was excited that we were having a baby.  Ivan thought the doctor was so happy that it was actually him having the baby. 

He told me that my cervix was long, so I didn’t have to do another transvaginal ultrasound.  He said everything looked fine.  He said I should come back in 6 weeks to do a interval growth ultrasound and a fetal echocardiogram.

Next, I went to have my blood drawn for the Panorama test.  It was three vials of blood.  It hurts a little when the needle goes in, but after that it’s fine.  It doesn’t make me feel faint.  The test results will come back in 7-10 days.

Ivan has been on a salad kick lately.  My favorite salad is definitely the watermelon feta salad that he made on May 1, 2014.

Watermelon Feta salad

It’s so refreshing and tasty.  It’s a great summer salad.  He got the idea to make it since the restaurant Forte has a Watermelon Feta salad on special.

Later that afternoon, I went to get a facial.  I was lying down with my eyes closed.  I felt bubbles, but harder than usual.  I put my hand on my stomach and felt the baby kick or hit my stomach.  I think he was saying Is anybody out there? like in the Pink Floyd song.  It was really cool to feel the baby moving. 

I felt even more movement later on.  It’s such a great feeling to know he’s moving and kicking inside.  We were going to see a comedy show.  The baby kicked me hard which made me jump a little.

The doctor’s office called on May 2, 2014 and said that the results of the alpha-fetoprotein test came back negative.  The test checks for spina bifida and anencephaly.  The baby has a 1 in 4,300 chance of getting spina bifida.  It was good news and the results came back really fast.

I took the quiz Are You Having a Boy or a Girl? that I saw online to see if it would accurately guess I’m having a boy.  It did guess that I was having a boy. 

I still wake up once or twice a night to go to the toilet.  It’s annoying, but even more so if I wake up Ivan which has happened once.  I do try to be as quiet as possible when I head to the bathroom and get back into bed.  I usually go right back to sleep.

I’ve been getting tired during the day and I usually take a nap.  I took a nap once for 2 hours and it didn’t effect me that night.

I went to see my chiropractor Dr. Simoncelli on May 5, 2014.  He said I was crooked, so he adjusted me and hopefully I’m back to normal.

Ivan and I have been wondering what the baby is up to.  We imagine he’s taking a bath with his rubber ducky when I’m showering.  He could be reading a book or just taking a nap.  I talk to the baby even more now since he’s been moving.  The baby books say that after 20 weeks the baby can hear you.  I’m sure he’s been listening our voices, to the music we play, Ivan’s piano playing and my singing. 

My fingers have been really numb when I wake up and sometimes it hurts slightly.  I told my doula Shannondoah this when I saw her for my hypnomassage on May 7, 2014.  She thinks that I have a pinched nerve caused by the way I sleep.  She showed me how to lie differently on the pillow.  I did switch to my old pillow since a few weeks ago we bought pillows that claim to “never go flat”.  I have noticed recently that my right ear lobe is tender to the touch.

The body pillow arrived in the mail, but it doesn’t have a pillowcase.  The pillow is almost as tall as me!  I have used it twice at night, but it’s hard keeping the covers on me and the pillow.  It gets cold and the nipple pain will return which wakes me up.  So, I have been thinking of wearing a tank top under my shirt which may help with the cold.

The doctor’s office called again about test results.  I called and the nurse said that everything was low risk.  I said that they already called me with results.  It was the second part of the test that tests for Down syndrome, Edwards syndrome, Patau syndrome, Turner syndrome, Triploidy, Vanishing twin and sex chromosome abnormalities.  It also confirmed that I was having a boy.  It’s a relief to know that everything is good with my baby. 

Last week, we got the nursery painted Sleepy Blue on two of the walls – the last wall will have wallpaper on it.  The last 3 days, Ivan and I (well, mostly Ivan) have been putting Ikea furniture together.  I hand him the screws and parts while he puts it together.  The nursery now has flooring that was put in today.

Jen at almost 22 weeks

I’m now almost 22 weeks and I’m feeling great.  My mid and lower back have been hurting me.  The chiropractic adjustments and the massages help it out.  I pee a lot more frequently now.  I guess the most annoying thing about pregnancy for me has been getting cold and my nipples getting hard and it’s painful.  Even just drinking a smoothie or cold water can do it.  It’s weird that I wear a jacket sometimes in the house, but it definitely helps when I start getting cold or to help warm me up. 

Balloon Classes

I went to an Easter get together at Rhonda and Justin’s house.  I met Rhonda’s friend Stacy and she gave us lots of advice about baby stuff.  She recommended a class she took 6 years ago that teaches you how to take care of your newborn baby.  She said most people are court ordered to be there, but she learned a lot from the class.  Ivan looked it up online and it’s called Parenting Project and they offer a few different classes for free.

Ivan called to set up the Parenting Project’s Baby Care class for June.  I signed up online for the Hypnobirthing classes for June as well.  I want to take Lamaze classes too.  My midwife Kat recommended Jollina Simpson who also teaches breastfeeding.  I’m going to call her to sign-up for the class.

I forgot to mention earlier that our friend Michael, his mom Leslie sent Ivan two books called What To Expect When Your Wife is Expanding and The Joy of Fatherhood: The Expanded 2nd Edition.  He LOVES What To Expect When Your Wife is Expanding since it’s so funny.  He read it really fast and wants to read it a second time.

I saw Dr. Sabol on April 22, 2014 at Mountain West Chiropractic since Dr. Simoncelli doesn’t work on Tuesdays.  He did different things than the other doctor like using gun that pressed down on my neck.  Also, I laid down and he put a pad under me and then he cracked my back on both sides.  They’re both great doctors and really nice.

I saw my midwife Kat on April 23, 2014 for my prenatal visit.  I have gained 14 pounds since I became pregnant.  Kat said everything is good and the baby is lying vertex (his head is down).  Vertex is the normal position the baby should be in for labor.  Ivan got to feel the baby in my tummy. 

I told Kat that I’ve been getting a knot in my lower back since it hurts a lot.  I told her the chiropractor adjustments do help it for a few days.  She recommended doing belly wrapping.  Belly wrapping isn’t rapping with your belly, but wrapping your belly with a scarf.  There are belly wrapping products out there, but Kat didn’t think they were good.  She also thought I should use essential owls for my lower back pain like dōTERRA’s Deep Blue oil.  She said I should get a good body pillow like Gaiam Organic Body Pillow.

She also showed me two exercises which would prepare me for labor.  One is doing squats for 20 minutes a day which I can break up into 5 minute sessions and the Yoga Cat Cow exercise for 20 minutes.  She said doing the squats with a chair behind me is good.

I told her how I went to As They Grow’s Consignment event and she recommended Children’s Orchard for another consignment place where you can buy and sell things.

I love that Kat writes down notes during our prenatal visits and places it online and I can check it anytime for things I forget which happens quite often with my pregnancy brain. 

Prenatal Flow Sheet

I can see the Prenatal Flow Sheet which shows my weight throughout the visits, weight gain, fundal height, pulse, fetal position and more.

Ivan ordered a body pillow for me on Amazon.  The Gaiam Organic pillow is so expensive. 

I started doing the exercises Kat recommended and the squats are very challenging.  I have weak ankles, so it hurts!  I know it will help with labor, so I will try to do it every day.

Ivan and I posted another baby announcement picture with us wearing blue and holding balloons.

iJen Baby Boy Announcement

We also did a baby name video.  Check it out below.

I was looking up baby stuff for the nursery on April 25, 2014.  I’ve gotten lots of inspiration from Project Nursery and Pinterest.  We have the animal wallpaper already and now we picked a blue paint called Sleepy Blue.  I want to add chevron (zig zag) and polka dots things for accents.  I make sure to bookmark everything and pin it on my Pinterest Baby Stuff page, so I don’t forget the cute stuff I might want to buy.  I love browsing the funny nursery wall art on Etsy. 

Ivan and I picked out some Ikea furniture for the nursery for storage for the baby’s clothes and toys.  I have been debating on getting a bumper pad for the crib.  There are studies that it’s not good since it can prevent air flow to the crib which can result in SIDS.  Some people buy them, but don’t use it until later when the baby is over a year old and then you don’t have to worry about the possibility of SIDS.  There is an alternative to the bumper pad with a rail guard.  I found one crib set that is cute, but I’m going to keep looking at crib sets or have one created on Etsy.

My hair has been getting fuller – I wish it would stay this way after I’m not pregnant.  But, my friend Carrie said your hair falls out after you give birth.  My feet have gotten a little bigger at the top of my foot.  I haven’t gotten bigger anywhere else lately.  But, in the past my butt, hips and thighs have gotten bigger. 

I’ve been moody more lately and I cry really easily now.  I’m trying to remain calm, but it can be difficult sometimes. 

It’s been a wonderful pregnancy so far.  I am now almost 20 weeks pregnant. 

Jen at 19 weeks and 5 days

You can really tell I’m pregnant now.  I feel so big!

Gender Announcement

Sorry for the lack of updates.  Ivan and I took a trip to New York City and I kept putting off blogging.

We left on March 29, 2014 and spent 8 days in New York City.  Stayed in an apartment in Astoria, Queens which is filled with Greek seafood restaurants.

Ivan was busy with business, so I got to explore New York City on my own a bit.  I went to the MoMA which had some cool and interesting art.  I also got a chance to walk around the HUGE Central Park.  I made sure to visit the Imagine Circle and the Alice in Wonderland statue.

Alice in Wonderland statue

I wanted to visit the Shakespeare’s Garden, but I didn’t get a chance to.

We had a good time in New York City.  Wish the weather was better since it mostly rainy and was really cold.  My nipples still got hard (and hurt badly) even with a t-shirt and a heavy winter jacket on.. that’s how cold it was!  I make sure to carry a jacket with me if I think a place is going to be cold.

Sometimes, I put off making appointments.  I did this when making my appointment for my ultrasound.  It turned out that my doctor that is connected with my midwife didn’t have an appointment for a few weeks on April 22nd really early in the morning.  I’ve never been a morning person, so I decided to make an appointment with another doctor at the same place a day earlier.  Ivan and I really want to find out the sex of the baby.

I talked to my midwife and she didn’t like any other doctors at Desert Perinatal Associates.  So, I called back the next day to change it and Dr. Wilkes didn’t have an opening until April 29.  He doesn’t work afternoons and he doesn’t work every day.  I was bummed, but I will try to see if any appointments open up sooner.  We will probably do an ultrasound at one of the ultrasound places through one of the deal websites.

I did so much walking at the art museum that my feet hurt and I was actually limping a little on my right leg.  It went away the next day, but it didn’t feel very good.

I’ve still been going to the chiropractor weekly.  Dr. Simoncelli joked that when he presses down on my sinus points it’s my favorite and I said Not really.  It hurts!  He pressed down so hard once it almost made me tear up.

I have been getting sick of drinking water since I have to drink a gallon a day.  I usually don’t drink that water normally.  I have been drinking sparkling water since we have a Sodastream machine.  I’m going to buy Crystal Light soon to add flavor to my water.  I also read that you can flavor water with frozen or fresh fruit.

My hands still go numb and my wedding ring will eventually not fit on my finger.  My feet are expanding, too.  I’m now in search of slip-on shoes since I know I won’t be able to tie my shoes soon.

Ivan found a good deal on Living Social for a gender check ultrasound.  We were happy to find out that they had an opening the next day on April 15.

On April 15, 2014, we went to Baby’s First Image for the ultrasound.  I presented the Living Social voucher.  On the form that Ivan filled out for me, it asks if I’ve had an ultrasound before.  Ivan marked no and the lady at the desk asked us and he said no.  She told us that we had to do a thing to determine the due date and tells us how the baby is lying for $25.  Ivan said then I’ll change it to yes.  The lady was too strict and stuck to the rules.  She said I’ll still tell the doctor that you’ve never had one.  How dumb!  I don’t know if it says it on the website (like the lady said), but it doesn’t say anything like this on their Living Social deal page.  We ended up paying the $25.  Ivan thought it would be handy to know the due date since the doctor we saw at the beginning to confirm the birth just based it on the start date of my last period.

The lady at the desk took us to the room.  There was a high bed with a stepstool on the side.  I laid down and she asked me to raise my shirt and she put a paper towel at the top of my pants.  She said the lady doing the ultrasound would be in the room shortly.

Maria came in and she’s very nice.  We told Maria that we wanted her to write the sex of the baby in an envelope since we were doing a gender reveal cake.  She said that was fine.  She had heard of it before.  Ivan saw a video that showed the gender reveal cake and a little boy being disappointed that he was going to have another sister.

She put the wand (no idea what the proper name is) on my belly which had a cold gel on it.  There was a big projector screen on the wall where we got to see the baby.  It was cool to finally see the baby.

Baby Ultrasound at 18 weeks

Maria measured the baby’s head.  She said that the baby was actually due later than we thought.  It was due on September 16 which is my sister’s birthday.

We got to see the baby in 4D which makes the baby look like an alien.

bby3d

It looks like it has the flat Filipino nose.  I would rather it had Ivan’s nose.  She told us that the baby is really skinny and is mostly skeleton.  We also got to hear the baby’s heartbeat.  She said the baby’s heartbeat was 160 bpm.  She said the baby looked healthy.  I think she forgot to tell us how the baby was lying.

Maria told us to close our eyes while she took a picture of the baby that revealed the sex.

It was really great seeing the baby for the first time!  It does make you feel even more excited for the little one to come.

We left Baby’s First Image and looked up bakeries.  Ivan found one that was close to our house called Drago Sisters Bakery that makes the gender reveal cake.

At the bakery, Ivan asked if we could get a gender reveal cake.  Unfortunately, it takes awhile to make a cake so we wouldn’t get it today.  The lady asked the baker and she said we could pick it up tomorrow at 5 pm.  The baker looked at the paper inside the envelope.  She then asked us what we wanted.  Ivan said we didn’t want to say since the look on her face might reveal the sex of the baby.  She placed the envelope in another envelope – probably to make sure we don’t peek!  We bought a 16” cake with a vanilla cake with strawberry filling.  The baker said she would put blue and pink on it with baby feet.

I was so tempted to peek at the envelope, but I resisted since I wanted it to be a surprise.  I still thought it was a boy since people have been saying it’s a boy since I’m carrying low and I don’t look worn down (which is the old wive’s tales that you look worn down when you’re having a girl since she’s stealing your beauty).

On April 16, 2014, I went to see the chiropractor.  I had a big knot in the middle of my lower back.

Ivan picked up the cake later on.  We wouldn’t be cutting the cake until later since Ivan wanted to do the gender reveal cake with his parent’s over Facetime.  His parents live in Southend-on-Sea, England.

We posted a picture of me asking our friends a few days ago if they thought it was a girl and a boy.  20 people guessed a girl and 12 people guessed a boy.

At 11:30 pm, which is 7:30 am England time, we called up Ivan’s mum and dad on Facetime.  Ivan placed the cake on the table.  I set up the camera, so I could videotape it.

Ivan handed me the knife and I cut it to make a slice, but the icing was so thick that you couldn’t really see the cake inside.  I said Oh, it’s a boy, but I was actually seeing the baby feet on top of the cake.  We finally got to see the cake and it was blue.  It was a boy!

Gender Reveal Baby Cake

Ivan’s dad already thought it was a boy since he would always talk about his grandson.  It’s so good to finally know the sex.  We decided to announce it on Facebook the next day.  I started working on a graphic for the baby announcement.

In the morning of April 17, 2014, I finished the baby announcement and posted it on Facebook.  It turned out great!

iJen Baby Announcement

iJen is our nickname that Ivan’s brother Neal came up with. which combines our names Ivan and Jen.

Here’s a picture of our baby boy showing that he’s a boy.

Baby Boy Ultrasound

Now, we can decorate the nursery.  We already have wallpaper with animals on it that we’re doing on one wall.  We’re thinking of a really light blue for the other walls.  I love browsing the different nurseries on Project Nursery.  I’ve collected a few ideas from a couple nurseries that I might use for the nursery.

I saw my doula Shannondoah on April 18, 2014.  She did a hypnomassage on me which I really needed.  She worked out the knot that was bugging me in the middle of my lower back.  I saw my birth again in the sky while I was lying on the water.  I like the beach that I visit during my hypnomassages.  I love beaches and floating in the water.

Jen at 18 weeks and 4 days

I’m now almost 19 weeks and I’m doing good.  The only thing that annoys me is the nipple pain which comes more often now.

Wonky Allergies

I saw my doula Shannondoah on March 19, 2014 for my massage.  Ivan and I got to hear the baby’s heartbeat again, but not for very long since the baby moved towards my back since it doesn’t like the sound of the doppler.  She thought that the baby is a boy since every time a baby moves around so much, it turns out to be a boy.  I told her about how my hands are numb sometimes when I wake up.  She said the massage may help with that.  I decided to go with a regular massage since I just wanted to chill out and not think too much.  It was really relaxing as usual.

A lot of people think it’s a boy since I’m carrying low and I look the same.  The midwive’s tale is that a mummy to be will look worn down if she’s having a girl since the girl is stealing her beauty away.  At first, I thought it was a girl, but I now think it’s a boy.

I have added a Store page to this blog which is listed at the bottom of the page.  It includes books I recommend and other great products and free apps for Mummies to be.  I have talked about some of the books and products on the blog.

On March 20, 2014, Ivan and I went to my parent’s house for a family BBQ dinner.  It’s always great to see the whole family and spend time with them.  I’ve been eating meat during my pregnancy since I have been craving it.  It’s always hard to pass up the meat at the family BBQs when I am pescetarian.

Mum's BBQ chicken

My favorite has always been my mum’s BBQ chicken which my mum marinades and my Dad grills up on the BBQ.

That night, Ivan and I were grabbing a quick snack at Whole Foods before we went to see a movie.  I thought the pizza looked good and got a snack.  I also got a natural energy drink to wake me up since I’ve been so tired lately.

My gums bleed a little when I brush my teeth.  It’s normal since I read it in one of my pregnancy books.  Just weird to see the stuff you spit out is pink and not white.

That night, I was about to fall asleep, but I had to run to the bathroom since I had bad stomach pains.  I had painful diarrhea.  I’m thinking I got food poisoning from the pizza.  I thought I was going to puke, but thankfully I didn’t.

I thought I might feel better on the morning of March 21, 2014.  But, my stomach still felt wonky.  I decided to take it easy.  I sent a text to my midwife Kat to see if there was anything I could take for my bad stomach.  She recommended bentonite clay.  She said put one teaspoon in water and drink it.  I bought the clay at Herbally Grounded.  I’m so glad I have a midwife because if I had an OB/GYN, I would have to make an appointment just to get a recommendation for my stomach.

I put the bentonite clay in water and it clumped up like, well you guessed it, clay.  Ivan thought I should stick it in the blender.  I said put cocoa powder in it, so it tastes better.  He put cocoa powder and honey inside.  It tasted like a water down cocoa drink, but it wasn’t so bad.

I saw my chiropractor Dr. Simoncelli that afternoon.  I told him my allergies have been bugging me lately and my back doesn’t hurt as much.  He did the karate chop to my neck and he even called it that.  How funny!  He cracked my back on each side.  He pushed down really hard an inch below my eyes for a minute.  It was really painful, but I’m sure it’s supposed to help my allergies.  He also pressed down hard on my eyebrow which really hurt as well.  I think I have a high threshold for pain since it hurts, but I know it will soon pass.  Plus, I know it will only benefit me.

The bentonite clay did help calm my stomach down.  Thank goodness, since we went to Pizza Rock for dinner.  I know I was thinking of not eating pizza for awhile since I think it was the culprit of my bad stomach.

The Verdura pizza at Pizza Rock

But, I couldn’t pass up the best pizza in town!

I mentioned in my last post, that my nipples get really hard when it’s cold and it can be painful.  I woke up during the night on March 24, 2014 and my right nipple hurt so freaking bad.  Usually, it’s been just my left nipple that has been hurting.  But, now it’s been both.  I have to make sure to have a jacket, so I don’t get too cold.  It’s hard to nonchalantly rub your nipple in public.  I certainly try though!

I’ve been noticing that my hair and nails have been growing faster since I’ve been taking my new prenatal pills.  I take one prenatal, 4 calcium magnesium pills and 2 drops of Vitamin D.  It’s so good not to have to take 8 pills every day.

I saw Kat on March 28, 2014 for my prenatal visit.  I told her my pregnancy has been going great.  She said no news is good news for her since it means the pregnancy is going well.  I peed in a cup and she read the results.  She said I have been eating more greens.  Ivan and I got to hear the baby’s heartbeat for longer today.  Again, the baby ran to my back because of the doppler sound.  She said the baby’s heartbeat was 155 bpm.  She says I’ve been getting enough water.  My belly now measures 17 inches which is normal.  I’ve been gaining weight lately. I’ve gained 9 pounds since I found out I was pregnant.  The baby is lying in a transverse position which means in a sideways position.  I told her about my allergies.  She recommended raw honey which I used to take.  She said it would be best to buy it at the farmer’s market since in the store there are additives.  She also thought I should read an article about essential oils since it could help with my allergies.  I asked about setting up my ultrasound.  I could set it up with the doctor for a few weeks to get my first ultrasound to determine the sex of the baby.  She said I could do another ultrasound if I wanted at 20 weeks to see the anatomy of the baby.  I asked her if that was to see if there was any problems.  She said it was and to see if everything is growing right.

Next, I went to see my chiropractor for my weekly visit.  I told him my allergies were killing me.  It’s been so windy lately.  He did the karate chop to my neck, my back in two places and pressed on my sinuses.  I felt better after seeing him.

Jen at 16 weeks and 5 days

I am now 16 weeks and 5 days.  I feel wonderful!  I’m excited to find out the sex of the baby.  It seems time isn’t moving very fast since I really can’t wait to have my ultrasound.

Birthday Food

On March 7, 2014, I went to see my chiropractor Dr. Simoncelli to tell him how I’m doing.  I wasn’t sure if I would be adjusted again.  I think I have it figured out.  Dr. Simoncelli talks really soft and it seems like he’s telling you a secret and only talking to you.  I don’t think he’s trying to put me in a trance anymore.  I told him my lower back felt a lot better.

Chiropractic table

I laid down on the chiropractic table.  The doctor cracked my back in two places and also my neck.  He also had me stand against a long pad that was on a wall and he cracked my back again.  He said I should come back next week.

I found out that my insurance did go through and it’s only $5 for the co-pay for each visit.  That’s great news!

It was my birthday a few weeks ago on the 4th.  Ivan’s mum and dad got me a funny pregnancy coloring book and an organic mommy care pack.

Mambino Organics Mommy Care Pack

I have been using the new belly butter which has a toner oil to be put on after.  The belly butter is greasier than the Burt’s Bees Mama Bee Belly Butter, but it smells fruity.  The organic belly butter is thicker and is made from mango, African shea and cocoa butter.  The toner oil has pomegranate, African shea and orange oil.  That’s why I think I smell like an orange after.  Ivan really likes the smell of it.

Ivan and I threw a birthday pinball pot luck party at our house on March 8, 2014.  It was a fun time playing games and eating.  My friends are awesome and bought gifts for me and for the baby.  The baby’s not even born and he or she is getting gifts already!  The baby got a bird hanging decoration for the nursery and lotion, bath gel, shampoo, tender tush and Gentle Baby essential oils.

I sent my midwife Kat my daily diet report which I kept track of for a week.  She thought that I wasn’t getting enough oils and protein.  She laughed when she saw I put Ew! next to the liver section.  She recommended that I have a smoothie everyday with nuts, milk (almond, goat or cow) and flaxseed oil or coconut oil.  I’m glad that Ivan makes great smoothies (he’s seriously known for them!), so he has been making me a smoothie everyday to ensure I get enough protein.

On Sunday March the 9th, Ivan and I met up with my big family for my birthday dinner.  I decided on Carmine’s at the Forum Shops since it’s a great place for groups to share food.  We got lots of food including a platter with different pastas and a big plate of my favorite dish penne alla vodka.

The HUGE Titanic at Carmine's

For dessert, we got the humungous Titanic dessert which has vanilla and chocolate ice cream, whipped cream, a brownie, chocolate sauce and nuts.   They sang Happy Birthday to me.  I had to snap a picture before blowing it out.  It was so delicious especially the chocolate ice cream and the brownie.

I have been feeling weak lately.  I try to lift things and they feel heavy now when they wouldn’t normally.  My midwife Kat said that my bones would be softer and it would be easier for me to bruise.

I have felt like my hands have been swelling up lately since my wedding ring seemed tighter than usual.  I have now switched to wearing my engagement ring which I actually think is prettier, so it works out well.  I wake up and my hands are numb.  Eventually, I won’t be able to wear any rings.

I talked my friend’s wife Shannon who’s about to give birth anytime soon and she said it started with her hands being numb and then her hands swelled up.  I already thought I had small, fat fingers.. they’re going to be fatter soon.

I saw my chiropractor again on March 14, 2014.  Before he does an adjustment, I take a deep breath and then exhale.  He did things to help with my sinuses.  He also pressed on my sinuses which hurt, but not sure it would help.  Dr. Simoncelli said that women who drank caffeine and took medication during pregnancy had a higher risk for their baby getting autism.  I’m not trying not to take my allergy medicine unless my allergies are really bad.

Ivan and I went to the Vegas Seven magazine 4th anniversary private party at Brooklyn Bowl that night with Maria, my cousin Charisse and her boyfriend Kia.  We got a free game of bowling and 4 drink tickets.  Sadly, I didn’t have a drink.  I do miss drinking.  But, I know it’s better for the baby not to drink.

We ate at their restaurant which has food by Blue Ribbon.  The fried chicken is so freaking good!  Kia wanted to get dessert.  I love dessert and we usually don’t get it since there’s no room left to put it.  Kia ordered the chocolate chip bread pudding.

Chocolate Chip Bread Pudding at Brooklyn Bowl Las Vegas

It was simply heavenly!  Wow, it was the best bread pudding I’ve ever had.  People like to feed pregnant women.  It’s so great!!  I love food.

The last couple of days I’ve been really tired, so much more tired than usual.  Sometimes I will take a nap during the day.

I’ve been debating on mentioning this.  It’ s a little embarrassing since it’s about nipples.  I KNOW that other women have experienced this since I’ve talked to family and friends about it.  When I get cold, my nipples get really hard and my left one hurts so bad and it’s so painful.  It was hurting so bad one day that Ivan and I were walking and I was walking too slow that we had to go back home since Ivan thought it would take us an hour to do a 30 minute walk at my current walking pace.

Usually rubbing my nipple or putting a cloth with hot water on it helps make the pain go away.

So, I’ve been a lot better at drinking a gallon of water a day.  I hate going to the bathroom so much, so that’s why I don’t drink a lot of water.  But, I know it’s good for me and the baby that I get enough water.  I go to the bathroom a lot anyway since I’m pregnant.

My allergies have been killing me the last two days.  I actually haven’t resorted to taking my allergy medicine.. but I might have to soon.  It has been super windy which is probably why my allergies are tripping.

Jen at 15 weeks and 1 day

I’ve been feeling great and I’m now 15 weeks and 1 day.  Sometimes I say I’m fat and it bums me out, but I’m not.. it’s just my belly expanding for my baby to grow in.

I have been craving bagels for some reason.  After my eye appointment today, I saw Einstein Bagels and had to stop in.  I got a blueberry bagel toasted with cream cheese.  It tasted soo freaking good!!

Heartbeat Adjustment

Every now and then I’ll get tired during the day.  I don’t nap, but sometimes I do think it would be a good idea.

My lower back has been so sore.

I saw my midwife Kat on February 25, 2014.  Her intern was with her as well.  Ivan and I were excited to see her since we would probably get to hear the baby’s heartbeat.  Kat found out about my diet and how much water I’m drinking.  I told her I wasn’t sure I was eating enough of the foods on the Dr. Brewer’s diet she recommended.  I have been bad and stopped recording what I’ve been eating everyday.  I’m trying to eat more and eat small meals.  It just seems weird to me.  Ivan is good at reminding me to eat eggs or foods with whole grain and eating my protein for the day. Kat recommended that I keep track of what I eat for a week and send it to her.  Then, we’ll go over it together and she’ll tell me what she thinks.

I laid down on the couch and Kat put the cold gel on my belly.  She showed Ivan and I where the baby was – below the belly button.  You could feel it since you felt resistance compared to other parts of my belly.  Kat went searching for the heartbeat.  She found it and it was pretty fast at 170 bpm.  It was really cool to hear the heartbeat.  The baby ran away from the sound of the doppler.  She said that the baby was smart since it ran away from the doppler sound.  I knew the baby was hiding last time!  She said she had no concern about me getting any of the tests (like Down Syndrome or Cystic fibrosis) that are recommended for women over 35.  She said she would be concerned if the baby’s heartbeat was 130 bpm constantly.

Kat asked if I felt the baby.  I said no.  The intern asked if I felt bubbles.  I have no idea what I’m supposed to be feeling.  I think I felt a bubble the other day… not really sure though.

Kat said my belly was 15 inches which is pretty big since the average at this time is 12 inches.

I had to pee on a long strip which is difficult since it’s hard to pee on the whole thing.  I had to try a couple times since I hadn’t been drinking much water.

Kat thought I looked healthy and well hydrated.  She showed me a hip opener that Ivan could do while I was on my back to help with my sore back.  Also, she said taking a bath with Epsom salt could help as well.  She gave me three recommendations for chiropractors.  She thought prenatal adjustments would be great for me.

I asked Kat when we would get an ultrasound to determine the sex of the baby.  She said you could get one at 16 weeks, but it wouldn’t be very accurate.  She said at 18 weeks, it’s more accurate.  We’re both excited to find out if it’s a boy or a girl.  It’s more waiting for us, but it seems like time has been going pretty fast lately.

My parents came over on February 27, 2014 since my mum made me chicken and pork adobo.  She’s still pushing me to eat meat to get my protein.  I told them how we heard the baby’s heartbeat.  My parents still want me to get the amniocentesis.  This is the test I mentioned before for women over 35.  I’ve heard bad things about amniocentesis like injury to the mum or baby or even a miscarriage.  I think my baby will be just fine.  I’m going to love the baby no matter how he or she comes out.

I’m lucky to have such a  husband who loves to cook healthy food.  He made a great healthy pad thai which was very tasty.  He also made a grilled zucchini salad with walnut, pomegranates and mint-tahini dressing with a recipe he found from my Fit Pregnancy magazine.

Grilled zucchini salad with walnut, pomegranates and mint-tahini dressing

Sometimes, I don’t like the dishes he cooks – but I know it’s because some foods don’t taste good to me anymore or some sauce can be too overpowering.  I think my sense of smell is even more magnified now.  I have super smell now.  My husband Ivan was cooking pad thai and as I came down the stairs I was hit with the smell of fish sauce.

I downloaded Plant Nanny for my iPhone which reminds you to drink water and also creates a cute plant.  I’m hoping it will make sure I get enough water for the day.  It reminds me every two hours to drink water.  So far I have been drinking a lot more water.

On March 1, 2014, I met up with former best friend Kori for Prenatal Yoga.  I haven’t seen her since 2008.  Kori is also pregnant but she’s 15 weeks along.  She’s due on August 17.  It was nice to have a friend in class.  I do like Yoga since it’s challenging and it stretches me out.  At the end, the teacher has you relax each body part.  It’s just like hypnosis and it makes me feel really relaxed.

Near the bathroom at Belly Bliss, there’s a bar with a water jug with water and fruit inside.  Also, there’s jars of food filled with Goldfish, little boxes of raisins, pretzels, animal crackers and Dum Dums.

Belly Bliss Chinese takeaway box

I grabbed the cute Chinese takeaway box and filled it with Goldfish, pretzels and animal crackers.  It’s such a great idea since pregnant women are always eating.

I chatted with Kori for a few minutes after class.  She said that her son Kyan would be ending soccer soon, so she’ll be able to go to the Wednesday class more often.  That’s good news!  It was great seeing her again and I know we’ll be going to Prenatal Yoga again soon.

My clothes have been slowly not fitting anymore.  I will have to look for more pregnancy pants soon since I only have two pairs right now.  I’ve been wearing skirts a lot since it has elastic.  I will look for shorts and skirts soon since it’s warming up and it’s comfortable.  I still wear my shirts since I think it’s cute when the shirt is snug and it shows off your pregnancy belly.  Here’s a picture of me after the Miley Cyrus concert on March 1, 2014.

Jen after the Miley Cyrus concert

I’m trying to remain as fashionable as possible even when pregnant.

I was out with my husband Ivan and our friend Michael.  Michael thought the baby was craving bacon.  I was actually craving chicken fingers.  Michael is another person who is pro-meat when women are pregnant.  We went to the Bacon Bar.  Ivan was expecting lots of dishes with bacon in them.  But, there were only a few dishes and a couple drinks that contained bacon.  I was happy that chicken fingers was on the menu.  Michael and I shared the Man Candy which is glazed maple syrup bacon with a hint of cayenne and served with Crown Royal maple infused syrup.  It was really tasty.

Chicken Fingers at Bacon Bar

My chicken fingers were good, but had too much breading on it.  I had one piece left and I asked for a box.  Michael said you don’t have to take that home.  I said I will eat it later.  The waitress said she has plans for it later on.  Don’t try to take a pregnant woman’s food.  That is a bad mistake!

I had my first appointment with the chiropractor on March 3, 2014.  I looked at the reviews of the doctors that took insurance and Dr. Al Simoncelli had great reviews and he looked nice in his picture on his website.

I had lots of paperwork to fill out when I arrived at Mountain West Chiropractic.  I swear it seems like the paperwork never ends.  The receptionist showed me how to check in and change my problem areas on my body.  You can do this on a tv that is placed on the front counter or on an iPad.

I was called a few minutes later and went inside a room.  One of the friendly receptionists told me to take off my clothes and leave my underwear and bra on and put a blue gown on.  The blue gown had a slit that sort of covered you with velcro to close it up.

Jen at the chiropractor

I felt like I was at the hospital in this gown.  I was also told to watch a video on chiropractic care which wasn’t very exciting.

After I watched the video, I cracked the door like I was told.  Dr. Sabol came in.  He asked health questions.  He told me how he met a woman who was having trouble conceiving.  He said she needs to come in and have a chiropractic adjustment.  She did and soon after she became pregnant.

I was told to reach for my feet which I couldn’t.  I told him it hurt near my ankles which he thought was weird.  He made me stand towards the door while he had me turn my head to the left and then the right.  He figured out what my posture was.  He asked if it hurt when I was on my stomach.  I told him I didn’t know since I don’t ever go on my stomach.  He said I would get my adjustment in the other room.  He said to put my clothes back on and go to the other room when I was done.  It seemed silly to put on a gown just for a couple of minutes.

I went to the other room after I changed and waited on a chair.  Dr. Simoncelli said hello and showed me the chiropractic table I was to lay on.  He talked about how his wife was adjusted everyday and all her births were very short ones.  There were other people in the room, so he spoke directly at me.  I don’t if his voice was soft or what, but it seemed to be hypnotizing and I couldn’t stop looking at him.  I think he was putting me into a trance!

I laid down and he explained that the table moves sometimes when he presses down on a certain area.  It doesn’t hurt or anything, it’s just weird to hear the click of the table.  He doesn’t believe in medicine and said that what he did to my neck would help with my sinuses.  He said that I was really tight in my lower back.  My left side was worse.  He loosened it up on both sides, but one wasn’t as loosened as the other side.  He didn’t do anything with my ankles which I thought was weird since I did put that in my areas that I thought hurt and might need work on.  He asked if I could come back on Wednesday to see how I was feeling.  I said that’s fine.  I set up an appointment for Friday since I had a busy day planned for Wednesday.

So, I haven’t had much lower back pain since visiting the chiropractor.  I still have my allergies.  I put in drops in for my eye allergy everyday which helps a lot.

On March 5, 2014, I had a hypno massage with my doula Shannondoah.  It’s great that I don’t have to leave my house to get a massage.

Before the massage, I got to hear the baby’s heartbeat again.  I only heard it for a few seconds before the baby moved away.  It’s great to hear the heartbeat and know the baby is doing good.  The baby’s heartbeat was 165 bpm.

During this massage, I got to see a glimpse of the baby.  I didn’t see the baby last time since I have no clue if the baby is a girl or a boy.  I imagined a baby with dark brown hair that looked Asian and had green eyes.

I also got to go inside the house which looked like our house inside.  I also pictured the birth but in a faster birth video this time.  It was nice seeing me and Ivan in bed and I’m holding the baby after I gave birth.

I love hypno massages from Shannondoah since it’s so relaxing.  I always get a great night’s sleep the night after the massage.  If you’re looking for a masseuse in Las Vegas, you should contact Shannondoah.

Feelings

“Feelings, nothing more than feelings.”

msnts

Don’t mind me, I was just thinking about how I sang the song “Feelings” when I had to get fillings at the dentist office when I was a kid.

I forgot to mention how I felt when I first found out I was pregnant.  It was actually a shock.  It wasn’t that I didn’t want to kids.. I just didn’t think that we’d start trying for kids and it would happen so fast.  I knew that we wouldn’t have a problem since Ivan’s lucky.  Ivan and I have put off having kids for as long as possible since we travelled so much.

It was all so surreal and I believed it, but it didn’t really feel “real”.  Ivan didn’t believe it neither since he kept making me take pregnancy tests.  I knew I was pregnant after that 2nd test.

Since I’ve been growing more, it seems more real.  I was scared about the pain involved with labor.  I’m slowly feeling better and not as fearful.

I’m excited to find out the gender of the baby.  We recently got to hear the baby’s heartbeat which was really cool.  It was short lived.. more about that in the next blog post.

Everybody is pretty excited especially family and our close friends.  I have no clue what to do with decorating the baby’s room.  We’re going to change our current guestroom to be the baby’s room.  So, we’re currently working on the new guestroom.  Once we know the baby’s sex, then maybe we can start thinking about décor for the baby’s room.

I’ve been talking more to the baby.  Hope that he or she is doing alright in there.

I really can’t wait to meet the baby once he or she is born.  I just can’t imagine what that will feel like.  I’m sure it’s going to be awesome though.

Hypno Cheese

I have been more emotional like I mentioned in my last post.  I was watching The Beatles tribute on tv.  I cried a bit while watching Katy Perry’s version of Yesterday.  I think she was thinking about her failed marriage with Russell Brand while she was singing  I also cried when Hey Jude was performed. 

My feet have swollen a bit.  My socks are smaller and my shoes are tighter.  I need to buy some slip on shoes like a pair of Vans.  I figured I would wear sandals since they’re easy to expand and soon it will be a lot warmer.

My belly and boobs do feel much smoother since I’ve been using the Burt’s Bees Mama Bee Belly Butter (Say that 3 times fast!).

I feel bigger, but my weight has remained the same.  I read that I might gain 1 pound a week during the second trimester.  People don’t know I’m pregnant, unless they know since they’re my friend.  So, only a few friends have touched my belly.  I don’t mind if people touch my belly.  It’s cute. 

I still have pregnancy brain.  I seem to forget things.  Not a big deal though. 

I love the pregnancy pants.  They’re really comfortable.  Here’s a picture to show you what it looks like.

Jen showing off her pregnancy pants

I’ve been getting pimples.  My cheeks turns red after I wear make-up and I wash my face.  I don’t know if it’s the make-up, so I don’t wear it as much now.  I have red marks on my chest which I have no idea how they got there.  Your skin acts weird when you’re pregnant.

I feel great.  My back does hurt more now though. 

I saw my doula Shannondoah on February 19, 2014.  I had an hour hypno massage with her.  I’ve had a hypno massage with her before so I knew it would make my aching back feel better. 

The massage had me lying down with my back raised to a 45 degree angle.  I am very easy to hypnotize.  Ivan has hypnotized me a lot and I go very deep. 

Shannondoah took me to a beach.  She had me float in the water with Ivan holding me for support.  I love floating in the water by myself on the ocean or sea since it feels like I’m floating on a cloud. 

She took me to a house which we would return to in future hypno massages.  I pictured a red brick house which was behind the beach.  She said there was a porch that was in the front of the house.  The house has a wood fence in front of it. 

I went to a cliff and there was a table and chair there.  I could pick up a remote control there that controls any aches or pains that I might feel.  I could also go there and hold my baby at any time since the baby had a bassinet there.  I didn’t see the baby though.  Maybe in other sessions I will get to see what he or she looks like.

I returned to the beach and was floating in the water.  It became cloudy and became a big movie screen in the sky.  I was to picture my perfect birth on the screen.  Yes, every contraction and what ever else happens.  The birth movie went on for awhile ending with me and Ivan holding the baby in our bed.

I told Shannondoah that I wanted to work on fear releasing.  I have feared the uncomfortable things that go with labor.  Shannondoah prefers using uncomfortable than using the word pain.  I also have a fear of complications.  I know I would be transported to the nearby hospital which is only a 2 minute drive from our house.

She had me imagine a box and I put all my fears inside the box.  I locked the box and then threw it into the ocean.  I think it has helped since I don’t really fear the labor as much.  I know that I can do this birth naturally without medications.  Of course, I will feel uncomfortable and it may take awhile for the baby to come out.  But, I will do it.  Once I set my mind on something, I will do it. 

I felt a lot better after the massage.  We set up another massage in 2 weeks.

I forgot to mention that Shannondoah suggested that I write a birth plan.  It’s something you fill out that states your preferences for the birth like if you want medication or what music you want.  I’m glad that there are sample birth plans out on the internet.  I have heard of birth plans, but wasn’t sure what I would want at my baby’s birth. I found a home birth plan here.  There’s also a birth plan for a hospital birth that I found on Baby Center.

I feel really excited to hear the baby’s heartbeat – hopefully, next week we’ll get to hear it with my visit with our midwife Kat.  I’m not sure when I will get my ultrasound.  Ivan and I are looking forward to finding out the sex of the baby.

It’s funny how everybody thinks they’re an expert on pregnancy.  I will post something on Facebook and somebody will comment and say Have you asked your doctor about that? or offer their advice.  I just laugh.  Each pregnancy can be different.  I know they’re just worried for my health.

I am now 11 weeks and 5 days.

Jen at 11 weeks and 5 days

I haven’t had any strange cravings yet.  I’ve been craving cheese lately.  Mmm, I love cheese.  I’ve bought string cheese and the tasty, but expensive, Babybel Light.

I got my new Post-it notes that have my blog website.  I’ve been doing the Post-its Project on my new post-its. 

Best day quote for the Post-its Project #BucketandDoit

This one I stuck in a daily planner at Wal-Mart.   I hope they’ve been bringing smiles and happiness to people!