Friday, September 30, 2011


[originally here, via here]

Is it too early to be collecting kid-activity-ideas?! I found this lovely project to do for your kids learning the alphabet... is that genius or what?! Just keep a bowl of hand-painted alphabet rocks on the kitchen table for your little person to just spell & sort & explore with letters at any given point in the day. Just wonderful. I hope that all of my days as a Montessori teacher will come flooding back to me when I go to teach our child how to read, write, be independent- but it feels like those days were so long ago. Practically another life.

I think I will start a folder on my computer to keep all of the wonderful mom-ideas. That mom that I hope I can be and have enough energy for. My mom had endless projects for my sister and I growing up. From wooden dolls that we could paint clothes onto, to our very own paint easels, to sewing barbie clothes, or even making wood forts to play in. Oh, I'm getting excited!! Childhood is so much fun!

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

cards to the grandparents...

I wasn't too sure when the ultrasound tech gave us 3 copies of the ultrasound picture what we were going to do with them. Well I don't think it was a random number.... one for us...and one for each of the grandparents obviously. Silly me, aren't they clever. So, I made a card for the grandparents to show them our little spud. It will be fun for them to compare the 9 week ultrasound picture to the 20 week one in the future when he/she looks like a real little baby. It was refreshing to do something semi-creative for once in about 3 months.

Monday, September 26, 2011

[week eleven]

Ta-da! I have returned to the bump-picture world. Thanks to your lovely comments about just being happy with my body the way it is and relishing in each stage of my pregnancy I have been inspired to take bump-photos. So here I am... week 11. Sans bump, just pudge...but happy!

Symptoms with my fig-sized spud....
  • I am feeling less nauseated- yay!! Man, that was exhausting being sick 24-7.
  • I am still fatigued but looking forward to when I get that energy back.
  • Peeing all the time, even waking up to pee- that's unusual for me because I sleep o-so very hard.
  • And now I have some intermittent low back pain- sacrum pain. I hear it's the ligaments stretching. So if it enables me to push out a babe in 7 months- then great. Stretch on.
  • I stepped on the scale yesterday...I haven't gained a pound. Ha. I beg to differ. The weight must have re-distributed my face, chest, and abdomen.
  • Eat more protein. This one is hard for me- meat does not sound appetizing and I am normally not a huge fan of meat. Matt drew me a cute picture from spud-in-utero pleading with me- "mom"- to please eat more protein so he/she doesn't grow up to be a wuss. Ha! Breaks my heart. I need more protein.
  • Start up yoga at 2nd trimester (which is 3 weeks away!!) and continue with aqua fit weekly.
  • Focus on eating healthfully and at home now that I can adventure outside of my bland-carb diet.
  • No stress...I've been doing great with this one, perhaps it's all the sleeping and not worrying about getting pregnant.

Saturday, September 24, 2011

the flu shot.

vaccine1 First doses of Influenza A (H1N1) vaccine to be available by September at the earliest

The flu shot... the debate is getting a little quieter and I never would have thought I'd have a second thought on the topic....but now I am. Here I am faced with the "opportunity" in this upcoming fall season to get the flu shot and I'm not sure how I feel about it. It's funny how things have changed since growing a little human, that needs me to make the right, healthy choices. I feel like I became a theoretically responsible parent, a mom, august 9th when I got the "pregnancy" word flash across the screen. So, I found in researching on the blogs and mom-sites that people aren't sure if the thimerosal- mercury preservative component in the vaccine-is safe for pregnancy, and when given the choice it seems like a lot of moms are just opting out. Well I probably wouldn't go out of my way if I didn't work in heatlhcare to get the shot if I didn't have to. But being an employee at a hospital and being in nursing school with my clinicals it's just not an option. I have to get the flu shot. I am actually exposed to the flu every day.

My general opinion on healthcare and disease, is that we just don't know everything out there. Science can't prove everything with 100% certainty in each different genetic makeup out there. In researching the topic myself, the flu sounds like an awful hospital-bound illness to put my body through and more importantly my fragile fetus. I also don't want to subject myself to a metal-based compound if I don't have to. I struggled with even bringing it up at my first prenatal appointment- would I be viewed as one of those radicals- like Jenny McCarthy- taking the extreme, with no vaccinations ever... or should I ask, so that I don't worry throughout my whole child's life about what did I do to hurt him/her? Could I have been more educated and made a better decision? I asked Matt what his views were, and he is kind of in the same thinking...lets educate the heck out of ourselves, it can't hurt. So, I asked my midwife about the topic. What did she recommend? Is there one trimester that is better over the other to receive it? She said its safe, and totally necessary (even if I didn't work at the hospital where it's mandatory). She said I cannot get the flu mist, and I really should get the shot regardless of the trimester I'm in but seeing how I am kind of between the first and second trimester it would be best to get it during the second.

I found out that thimerosal was taken out of all childhood vaccines, in light of the Jenny McCarthy fiasco. They found that there was actually no decrease in the numbers of autistic children since removing the thimerosal. But, why not just take it out to make people feel a little safer, and have people opt to get vaccines. Not all flu shots have the thimersol compound either, and some states have banned it being used all together. I looked into Boise and what is offered at my hospital (which happens to be free for employees) and I have yet to get a clear answer.
So what did I end up doing?! I will let you all know end of October- but I'm getting the shot. It's not the right decision for everyone- but it was the one we made with all the information we had. Now I just have to protect myself from about 50+ other harmful exposures from work each and everyday.

Some more information if you want-
FDA on thimerosal

Thursday, September 22, 2011

fall is here.

A night by the fire...bringing in the fall. It was glorious. A little bob dylan folk music, some string lights, and blazing fire in the chimnea that you could almost see from space I bet...and just us & the dogs. Matt and I talked about how we could have life carry on just like this with a little one. We talked about baby names and throwing a little earthy mix into their middle names without being too hippie-granola. It was a great night.

Happy fall everyone!

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

belly cream

I was just starting to think about what happens when I actually do "show." Will I get stretch marks? Can I prevent them? When I consulted my pregnancy books they said it's mainly genetics... but why not try to minimize the stretching?! Just then I received a wonderfully thoughtful and adorable present on my doorstep! My sister sent me a "welcome to the first trimester" package (she lives on the east coast far far away, I don't know why our families won't move closer to us in glorious Idaho). Anyways, in it I found a few wildly informative books- dad's guide to pregnancy for dummies, and the baby bump. Also some queasy drops which really helped ease my nausea- and they are all natural- the sour raspberry ones are awesome. AND just by chance some natural belly cream.

Somehow she knew exactly what to get me...even though she hasn't been pregnant before, it was so sweet. So I have started to use this beautiful belly balm with hopes of eliminating (okay maybe just minimizing) stretch marks. I will let you know how it goes, so far I have only heard great things about it. Thanks Kel, I feel so loved!!

Sunday, September 18, 2011

[bump pictures & wk. 10]

Oh, such a delima. I have loved looking at blog-mom-sites and seeing just how crazy it is that bodies grow and what a cute idea to have pictures along the weeks. So when I got pregnant, I thought I'd really like them, but so far I have not. I look about the same, except I'm getting a tad pudgier. Not cute- bump-showing. Just pudgy. Oh yeah, and sleep deprived even though I sleep 14+ hours a day, and lacking all energy. And I still manage to take awkward photos. So now I feel like I'm at a cross I jump in full force each week when I'm close to showing or do I choose something else?! Will I really look through pictures of me standing in the exact same spot over a 9 month period?! Would I rather enjoy random pictures of me growing...but with matt, the dogs, the snow, camping...etc? Hard to say. I have no idea.  I do know I need to get over the pudgy-thing and just take photos, I will appreciate it later.

Do you all have any input? Anything you loved doing? Anything you wished you did now looking back?! Have any super cute picture-ideas you want to share with me?! I'd love help!!

Oh yeah...and I'm 10 weeks!! Without a bump-photo as of yet this weekend. I stopped back at week 7.

Friday, September 16, 2011

first prenatal appointment

[first picture of our little spud with a strong heart beat]

We had our first prenatal appointment with our nurse midwife yesterday. It was grand. I only cried once... but that was because I heard one of the sweetest sounds I've heard in my life... a precious little bounding heart beat! Oh my gosh, it's real, and I have a baby really growing inside of me...or something comma-shaped. It's unbelievable.We had a successful doppler & ultrasound. For Matt it was seeing our sweet little spud all curled up on the monitor that did it. Oh...and when our midwife referred to matt as the "dad" that about made us both gasp. He's a dad?! Crazy, when did that happen?! How did we get so old?! We think we are ready for this?! Just craziness.

I was pretty close to my "due date"comparing dates to the actual development of our that's great. We will be having a baby in april most likely. They say April 15th...but come on. Who really knows. And it's only one spud! I know we could have handled anything that came at us, but this simplifies life a lot for us. We talked about medication-free child birth (much, much more on that later), genetic testing that we opted out of, family histories, health concerns, and then any questions. But I felt pretty prepared for this appointment (minus the emotional component) internet and all of the wonderful books out there pretty much teach us everything we need to know about these stages. appointment.... 4 weeks. I can breathe easy our little spud is growing....

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

pinterest wednesday

Last night was the first time I have cooked in a couple of months. Let me tell was a BIG deal. I have been craving almost anything lemon-sour-fruity. So I looked on pinterest to find some inspiration, and I found these... They were fantastic, especially if you're pregnant and love a little sour. It was so good,  want to share the recipe with you...

[Lemon Crinkle Cookies]

½ cups butter, softened
1 cup granulated sugar
½ teaspoons vanilla extract
1 whole egg
1 teaspoon lemon zest
1 Tablespoon fresh lemon juice
¼ teaspoons salt
¼ teaspoons baking powder
⅛ teaspoons baking soda
1-½ cup all-purpose flour
½ cups powdered sugar
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
In a large bowl, cream butter and sugar together until light and fluffy. Whip in vanilla, egg, lemon zest, and juice. Scrape sides and mix again. Stir in all dry ingredients slowly until just combined, excluding the powdered sugar. Scrape sides of bowl and mix again briefly. Pour powdered sugar onto a large plate. Roll a heaping teaspoon of dough into a ball and roll in powdered sugar. Place on baking sheet and repeat with remaining dough.
Bake for 9-11 minutes or until bottoms begin to barely brown and cookies look matte {not melty or shiny}. Remove from oven and cool cookies about 3 minutes before transferring to cooling rack.

And remember when I said I would branch out from sweets on pinterest?! Well I kind of did. I also made dinner last night- crazy right?! I never make dinner, even in non-prego-state. Matt is just a way better cook, and he actually likes cooking. But I made potato-apple-gratin. Oh my, so delicious. Here in Idaho its still scorching out, you couldn't tell fall is right around the corner. But this dish made me feel like it's autumn.
It happens to be gluten free- if you care, I don't. But I did have all of the ingredients on hand, minus the cream, so it was rather cheap and fun to make. Here is my adapted recipe, the original website I think is blogger from France? maybe Canada? anyways- it said cook at 180 degrees. So I started to... then realized it was probably Celsius, for that would take about a day to cook in Fahrenheit. Totally dumb. So don't do that!

[Apple Potato Gratin]

1 apple
10 little white potatoes (that's what I had on hand)
4 oz heavy whipping cream (7 tablespoons)
3.5 tablespoons milk
1/3 cup green onion, washed and finely sliced
1/2 cup grated cheese (I chose cheddar and jack pre-shredded)
salt + pepper, to taste
Heat oven to 350 deg F and grease a glass dish with butter.
Wash the apple and potatoes (their skin contains the best nutrients to its better to keep it on!) and slice thinly with a knife or mandolin. I used a Cuisinart slicer for apples and potatoes- took about 5 minutes.

Layer the dish... really in whatever fashion you like or not at all... I did it like this...
potatoes [bottom]
apples & onions
potatoes & apples & onions & salt & pepper [top]

Whisk together the cream and milk and pour over the top. Cover with foil and bake for approximately 50 minutes. Remove foil. Add a light layer of cheese and a little butter on top and bake for another 15 minutes or until cooked through. Cool slightly, cut and serve. I just need to get enough energy to do these...

[cookies and gratin picture from pinterest recipes, dishes picture is unfortunately mine]

Sunday, September 11, 2011

[first appointment prep & 9 weeks]

[pretty funny sticker a co-worker told me about]

My first appointment is thursday!!.... Sept 15! I have been looking forward to this since I got the "pregnant" go ahead.

My goals:
  • one word.....ultrasound! Matt & I just want to see that sweet little heart beat
  • zofran prescription. I have to fly to California to go sailing coming up with my family, in which I am worried I will be a pansy for both. zofran will be my friend.
  • I do not want genetic testing, so I will let my nurse midwife know that
  • see if some B-6 would help with nausea, see what she recommends
Anything else I should expect? Do you have any good questions I should ask?

And ...I'm 9 weeks pregnant! No big changes...however each morning when I wake up I expect to see a baby bump just pop out, just all of a sudden. Still no luck.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

co-sleeping options

I found a new project for my dad... however he does not know it yet (hi dad!).

I really want to sleep in the same bed as my babe. The idea of feeding through the night every 2 hours, the risk of SIDS, the heart-wrenching thought of being a whole room away from our precious babe.... its really a no-brainer for me. Matt and I are quite big people as it is in a queen sized bed though. We have about a 2' radius of free space around our bed in our room, so that leaves very little space for a co-sleeper.  I have been looking at co-sleeping options, tons of them actually. And all of it consists of plastic stuff. I don't care for the plastics, so in searching I found this beauty....

How fantastic is this co-sleeper? Its beautiful, a real work of art. (It also happens to be $300). In our house though, I can't imagine anything better.

I love the way our coffee table looks in our house that matt built- (can you spot our monster-emma-dog?!, its her favorite place to nap)

And I love the wine rack my dad built out of wood-

I just have a special place in my heart for wood things...they are so beautiful and special....and I happen to know two guys that are exceptionally good woodworkers. Matt doesn't have the appropriate tools to make it right now, but my dad does!! My dad has been making my sister and I wood-projects our whole lives.... a 4 story dollhouse that my mom and dad built, little tea-table and chairs, a dresser (that I still use), a full size bed frame for when I moved off to college, a rack to hold my surfboard in my first apartment, a wine rack in our living room, and now....perhaps a co-sleeper for our brand new baby?! It really only seems fitting. Now I have to see if he would be so inspired. Plus we could use it for all of our spuds...however many we decide to have.

Monday, September 5, 2011

[eight weeks]

[our bountiful garden's tomatoes]

Well, I'm still here.... but barely. I feel like all I do is sleep and try not to hurl. I feel like I am an incredibly boring version of myself. But all of the books and websites say it will all change week 12-14?! Fantastic. Only 4-6 weeks. Maybe even sooner if I'm lucky? We won't mention going longer...that's just not funny.

I have tried lots of foods to calm my stomach, thanks to all of your tips!
-sour patch kids
-lemon heads
-ice cream
-frozen yogurt (tart berry is awesome)
-small meals, constantly
-and then just going off of what "sounds good" sometimes this works, sometimes I re-think it rather quickly.

Food aversions-
-anything our beautiful fresh tomatoes in the garden, big bummer. So matt is freezing them pureed to make pasta sauce in about 4-6 weeks, when I'm "normal."
-meats- except chicken I am okay with
-alcohol (the smell of it, I'm sure the taste of it too...but that's taboo to even think about)
-peanut butter
-anything with flavor.

Yup, that about sums up my life right now. Waves of nausea, my favorite. However, it is fun feeling really pregnant, I don't feel like even an ounce of myself. When I look around at women in general I can't believe we go through this. It's amazing. Women are powerful. I had researched a lot about what pregnancy would be like, but I really didn't have a clue that the first trimester would feel like this. You still have to go on with normal life while you have all of the aches/pains/fear/nausea going on inside of you....that no one can see. You have to push it aside and go on. And the general public doesn't see a cute bump and understand. The first trimester is a secret. But I have to admit it's the best secret I've ever had. Yay! 8 weeks!

Friday, September 2, 2011

gray & yellow nursery inspiration

I always loved the weddings that chose to have gray and I think I get that chance with our baby nursery! I have yellow/pumpkin walls, with light yellow trim, dark bamboo curtains (which I could change if I was really inspired), and wood flooring. We will want to know the sex of the spud, but I just love color....especially the neutrals. I think we will probably steer clear of the pinks and blues, we don't naturally gravitate towards those colors anyways.

[my office that will turn spud room in about 7 months]
We already have a crib (remember here, when I really pre-planned the baby thing and bought a $15 crib?!) happens to be dark wood, which I could keep that way or paint white. And we have a changing table/dresser from matt's parents that is dark stained wood, that we can pick up at christmas time.

So what we still need in spud's room:
  • simple, super soft, gender neutral sheets that coordinate with gray and yellow
  • gray soft jersey sheet DIY crib bumpers
  • rocking chair
  • large floor rug
  • baby gate to keep the dogs out of the room
  • custom/DIY changing pad that will fit the dresser/changing table
  • DIY mobile for over the crib
  • nice, clean storage containers/boxes under the crib for clothing/bedding/diapers
  • cute white picture frame assortment for over the crib
Anyone have any great sites we should be looking at for any of these items? Any advice on what works well?!