Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Must Have's - Second Trimester

Last week I gave you my "Must Have" list for the first trimester.
I figured I'd continue the trend this week with my second trimester list,
which I know you've all been on the edge of your seat wondering about.
What can I life is the definition of thrilling excitement.
Try to keep up, okay? 


Things definitely got easier for me pregnancy-wise after about the 14 week mark.
I got most of my appetite back and was able to walk up a flight of stairs 
without feeling like I needed a nap.

Let me just say, though, that I've never felt that "pregnancy glow" 
that you hear so much about.
I'm beginning to think it's a myth.
And all those women that proclaim to LOVE being pregnant
are lying through their teeth.
Kind of like how I don't believe that nobody remembers the pain of childbirth.
While I'm sure the beautiful baby in your arms makes you googley eyed with love,
I'm pretty sure I'm gonna remember pushing a watermelon out of me.
Even with an epidural.

Now, back to this list...
In the 2nd Trimester, my McDonald's cravings and nausea dissipated, 
but the growing baby bump added its own challenges,
including sleeping, dressing, and getting through the day,
which is mostly what this list is based on.  

1.  Body Pillow
Sleep became difficult in the middle of the 2nd trimester, especially because I like sleeping on my back and the weight of my new tummy often left me feeling light headed if I spent too long flat on my back.   A friend lent me her Snoogle Pillow, which I love because I can have the curvy part between my knees and the straight part behind my back.  That way I can kinda turn on my back without being completely flat.  You could also just use a bunch of regular pillows, or a regular body pillow, and save a few bucks.

2.  Belly Oil
Another friend of mine sent me this Earth Mama Stretch Oil.  She had twins and managed to avoid stretch marks.  While I think that's mostly a hereditary thing, I'd like to avoid it if possible.  This oil smells so good and I love rubbing into my growing belly every day.  So far I've got no marks, but we'll see what the next 9 weeks brings!

3.  Empire Tops
Early on in the pregnancy I went to TJ Maxx to get a few tops that I could wear to work and camouflage my belly.  Even if you've already told people you're pregnant, there's still that stage where you feel like your baby bump could be taken as a too-many-cookies bump.  That's where the empire waisted tops come in handy, giving you some flowy fabric to hide behind.

4.  Maternity Pants
At some point you just have to bite the bullet and get some maternity pants.  Since they're usually not cheap, I figured I'd rather buy them earlier than later and get as much use out of them as possible.  I've ended up with a couple pairs of jeans, 3 pairs of work pants, some leggings, and some yoga pants.  The low rise ones are nice early on, but as I got bigger I liked the full panels a little better.

5.  Bra Extender
Somewhere in the 2nd trimester I invested in a few new, bigger bras.  But after a while the bands started to feel too tight because I think my rib cage is expanding.  Or I'm just gaining weight.  Instead of getting more new bras, I found these extenders which you hook on to the back to add an inch or so.  This is one of those simple things that I thought was just amazing.  Why didn't I think of it sooner?!

6.  Open front cardigans (again)
The temperature in my office usually ranges from stuffy and hot, to frigid and cold.  So I always have a sweater or cardigan with me.  I'm including open front cardigans in my list again mainly because they pretty much work at any stage in the pregnancy, don't have to be "maternity," and can be used when you're not preggers.  

7.  Maternity layering tanks
During the pregnancy, I found that I liked having an extra layer under my shirt.  It helps to hide a protruding belly button, and also feels better against my skin than the panels on most maternity pants.  I love these tanks from Target because they're super light and stretchy, as well as these from Old Navy because they're affordable and don't show too much cleavage, which is nice at work.

8.  Thermacare Heat Wraps & warm baths
As my belly gets bigger I find that it's putting more and more strain on my low back and pelvis.  I like wearing the Thermacare wraps during the day to help ease the pain.  They really stay hot for 8 hours, and are thin enough that you cant see them under your clothes.  I also really miss taking hot baths at the end of the week and have compromised with warm baths instead.  Sometimes I'll turn up the heat a bit and just fill the bath enough it hits my low back but not cover my belly.  That way I get the heat I like and don't feel like I'm "cooking" the baby.

What were your "must have" items during your pregnancy?

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Must Have's - First Trimester

Now that I'm well into the third trimester
(only 10 more weeks to go!)
I figured I could share some of the lessons I've learned along the way.

Below I've compiled a list of "essentials"
that helped me survive the first trimester.
For me, it was 3 months filled with fatigue, nausea, questions, 
heartburn, mood swings, and pretending to co-workers that you're not pregnant, 
just to name a few.

Needless to wasn't my favorite time of pregnancy.

I hope that my list can help any other first-time moms 
get through the first trimester.

1.  Belly Band
This amazing invention allows you to continue wearing your normal pants for months, even if you can't button them up.  It just looks like you've layered another shirt underneath yours.  Luckily I had a friend nice enough to lend me hers, but I used it so much I think I'm gonna buy her a new one. 

2.  Zantac
Most of my friends didn't need this till the third trimester, but I had nasty heartburn from the get go.  Anything and everything would give it to me, and for much of the first trimester I constantly felt like I had food coming back up my throat.  Lovely, isn't it?  My doctor recommended Zantac, and while it didn't completely take the problem away, it certainly helped.  Definitely talk to your doc before taking any meds though!

3.  Gummy Vitamins
Due to the constant nausea, I could not handle swallowing the large horse pills that most pre-natals are.  In all honesty, I went several weeks (or months) without taking vitamins because they made me gag and dry heave.  A friend told me about these gummy vitamins and saved my day.  They don't contain any iron, though, so if you're anemic you may want to take a supplement too.

4.  Crackers
Since I was always nauseous, I found myself craving salty, crunchy crackers and chips to help settle my stomach.  I didn't go anywhere without a baggie full of crackers in my purse.

5.  Water
I also didn't go anywhere without a bottle of water.  After a while, plain water also made me nauseous so I used lemon or cucumber to add a little flavor.  Some people swear by sparkling water or ginger ale but those didn't do anything for me.

6.  Mayo Clinic Guide
If this is your first pregnancy you're probably gonna have a lot of questions.  This book provided helpful information and, coming from the Mayo Clinic, was a source that I trusted.  It breaks down  the pregnancy week by week, so you know what is happening to your baby each week.  My husband also liked reading it too, since I think it helped him feel more connected.  I was able to check this out from my library for several weeks instead of buying it.

7.  Pantyliners
I'm pretty sure I haven't used a pantyliner since middle school, but trust me, these become very necessary.

8.  Open front cardigans
Perfect for hiding that little bump that you're still not telling your co-workers about.

9.  Gum
Everything I ate left an aftertaste in my mouth that worsened my nausea.  So I found myself chewing gum throughout the day to get rid of that taste.

10.  Baby blogs - the bump, the cradle, babble, etc
It's always nice to read about other women going through the same thing you are.  These sites are all useful tools, especially in the early days when you're full of questions.  I take the information with a grain of salt, though, until I back it up with more trusted data or talk to my doctor.

Monday, March 19, 2012

Weekend in Tahoe

Last weekend the hubby and I
 took a trip up to Lake Tahoe to visit his parents.
And, in a way, it was our babymoon
since it'll be the last trip before baby girl arrives.
Although, I'm not sure a weekend with your in-laws
and sleeping in a sofa bed counts as a babymoon.

The weather was beautiful and sunny with hardly any snow on the ground.
Which was good for me, but not so much for the hubs
who wanted to go snowboarding.

We spent Saturday afternoon driving around the lake,
stopping at various view points along the way to take pictures.
I'll never cease to be amazed by the beauty of the lake
and the deep blue color of the water that doesn't seem to exist anywhere else.

About 3/4 of the way around the lake, we stopped for lunch.
When we were told it would be a 20 minute wait
my husband said, "that's okay.  We'll still make our appointment at 3:00."
Appointment?  What appointment?
It turns out my dear, loving husband had made an appointment
for me to get a prenatal massage.
And, oh my, it was the best 60 minutes I've had in a very long time!

Here are some snapshots of our drive around the lake...

On Sunday, we got a tiny bit of snow.
So the hubs took advantage and went boarding at Northstar.
I tagged along and spent the day lounging around 
on comfy couches in the "living room" at the new Ritz Carlton.
I pretty much read Bossypants cover to cover
and had a very cheesy grilled cheese sandwich for lunch.
Not a bad way to spend an afternoon.

So it wasn't quite the tropical babymoon I originally envisioned
but it was still nice to get away for a few days 
and breathe some fresh mountain air.

How was your weekend?

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Holy Cow - It's March! And I'm Filling In The Blanks!

I'm feeling lazy about posting this week
so I'm taking the easy way out and 
linking up with Fill In The Blank Friday again.
Hop on over and join in!


1.  The highlight of my week was   having lunch with my mom....and eating the chocolate cake she brought me!

2.   If I had to classify my interior design aesthetic it would be   uh...since I'm pretty far from owning a house and having enough money to redecorate I haven't given it much thought.  I'd love to get rid of our old, squishy couches though!

3.  My first vehicle was   a 1990-ish grey Ford Probe that was my sister's before it was mine.  The trunk leaked when it rained and it smelled like mildew.  But it got me through high school driving, which was pretty adventurous for me....several flat tires, knocking over a mailbox, and one really bad accident.

4. An item I need to have in my day in order to function is  gum.  Before the pregnancy I didn't chew much gum, but nowadays any aftertaste in my mouth makes me nauseous so I'm constantly chewing on gum to get rid of it

5. My favorite way to waste time is  playing on the internet...checking email, reading blogs, reading the news, etc.

6. Right now I could really go for   twelve hours of uninterrupted sleep .

7.  This weekend I will be   going to a wine tasting party where, sadly, I won't be tasting any wine .