Heartbeat or Just Good Hygiene? (32 weeks)

I’m now 32 weeks along in my pregnancy. That means 8 more weeks to go. We’re in the single digits now folks!

Holy crap.

I have a list a mile long of things that still need to be done. Most are relatively small, but still.

And we need to settle on a name. We each have ideas but we haven’t sat down to talk about them or compare.

It’ll all get done though and everything will work out just fine.

At least that’s what I keep telling myself.

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This pic was taken at the end of a long day, on a weekend, hence the lack of make-up. And I’m wearing the same shirt as last week. How embarrassing…I have no shame.

Today was another baby doctor appointment AND we had another ultrasound! You could tell how much the baby had grown and developed in just the 12 weeks since our last one. The face was clearer. The heartbeat was stronger. There was less “space” in there to move around.

This time we brought Isabella along with us. I’m so glad we did too. She’s old enough to see what’s going on and understand most of it. It was fun to watch her reactions.

The first thing we saw was the face.

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This is the front of the face with the top of the head on the right side. You can see one eye at the top, closed, the nose and mouth. It all looks kind of puffy and swollen. Not sure if that’s just the image quality or what.

It came up right away and was very clear. The mouth was moving like TTB was talking to us and it was blinking its eyes. Isabella said, “That’s what I looked like when I was in your tummy Mommy!”

They moved on then to looking at the placenta, abdomen, head and other “less fun” things and Isabella lost interest.

Then they moved on to the heart. First we saw the heart beating and then the tech flipped a switch to add a layer of color, so that they could look at blood flow. Isabella thought this was pretty neat.

But the best was yet to come!

When they started tracking the heart rate, that’s what really peaked her attention. On the screen we could see the line tracking the heartbeat and we could also hear it. She said, “What’s that noise coming from Mommy’s tummy? Is the baby gargling?” She wanted to hear it over and over and over. Maybe she’ll become a heart surgeon one day!

That was about the gist of it. They did try to get a good 3D image but the baby didn’t want to cooperate. TTB kept putting its hand over the face so that we really couldn’t see.

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I know that’s hard to make out. This is a 3/4 view. The knob at the top is the umbilical cord. Directly below that is the head, with eyes shut and tilted slightly up. TTB has its chin resting on the back of its hand.

Now for some stats!

· The baby weighs a little over 4 lbs., which is in the 58th percentile.

· The heart beat was 158 bpm

· I have gained another 4 lbs. since my last visit 2 weeks ago. That’s more than I’d like but admittedly, I’ve been pigging out lately. Let’s just say baked brie, four-cheese macaroni, cheesecake, Valentine cookies, brownie sundaes, pesto pasta and donuts have all been consumed by me at some point in the last week. It’s time to get better about my diet again. If I keep this up I’ll be 200 pounds in no time!

· We still don’t know the sex. No we weren’t tempted to give in and find out at this second opportunity either.

One recent happening is that my legs are getting bigger and puffier. They’re the worst at the end of the day.


Here they are on Monday, after being gone and in heels for 13 hours. You can see where I started to swell up around the tops of my socks and puff out.

Also, cankles.


See how swollen my ankle is? It can be kind of painful sometimes too, the more fluid your body retains.

It’s all apart of the process though and will be over soon enough.

We’re in the home stretch now!


Take a look back!

What I Won’t Miss… | 26 weeks | 20 weeks

The Big 3-0

I’m 30 weeks pregnant! In other words, 10 weeks away from having a new little baby.


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30 seems like a big milestone. It means we’re in the home stretch. We’re reaching the finish line. We can start to see the light at the end of the tunnel.

People have been asking me a lot if I’m ready to have this baby and the answer is yes. In a sense. I’m certainly ready to meet the little one and DEFINITELY ready to have my body back. But at the same time, I’m not so eager that I want the baby to come early. Every day Team Trader Baby (TTB) can stay in and gestate is one more day of increased health. Also, from a practical stand point, we’re not quite there yet. The nursery isn’t done. We still have shopping to do. Not a lot, but enough that I’m starting to stress out just a little tiny bit.

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Getting my sassy on! Funny how, if you didn’t know, you probably wouldn’t be able to tell I’m pregnant in this pic. It’s all about the right angle…

Also, I know that once the baby is here, everything will change. Our little threesome will be no more. Isabella will have to share her time with Mommy and Daddy and visa versa, we won’t be able to have as much one on one time with her. I will miss that but we will have a new family dynamic which is great too.

My doctor’s visit was about the same as usual. We spent more time talking about football than babies (she’s a Ravens fan). I gained another 4 lbs which is right on the mark for my goal of 1 lb. per week, making my total weight gain at 31 lbs. If I keep this up, by the end I will have put on 40lbs or so. They like you to stay in the 35 lb. range but I’m pretty close and my doctor is not worried at all. No health issues of any kind (like gestational diabetes) so it’s all good.

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Pic from the doc’s office to change things up a bit! Plus she was running late and I was bored…

The baby is fine too. Heartbeat was strong and measurements were good (they measure the size of the bump in centimeters to make sure you’re tracking and I’m right on the money).

Now I’m on a “see the doc” every 2 week schedule since I’m in the 3rd trimester. At the next appointment, they will do another ultrasound to make sure the baby is growing enough. I can’t wait to see more images of the little one. This time they should be even more clear since baby will be so much more developed!! I guess there are advantages to being of Advanced Maternal Age!

I feel pretty good though, physically. As to be expected, I am having more and more discomfort in the form of back and hip pain. I have a knot on the left side of my back that will not go away. Every night when I lay down it starts throbbing. My sciatica pain is still there too. Mostly I feel it at night if I sleep on one side too long. For the past 2 day it’s been lingering and causing some pain on my right side when I walk and made sleeping very difficult.

Hip pain…just one more thing pregnant women and old people have in common.

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I can feel the baby getting bigger too. The little flutters and kicks that once were like bubbles inside me are now more like rocks. There are certain spots the baby hits that are extra sensitive and cause me to wince. Particularly when it moves up in to the top right corner of my uterus, under my rib cage.

I’ve been reflecting a bit on the differences between the 2 pregnancies that have gone full term (I feel like I have to clarify because I never want to forget the pregnancies that ended early as those babies are my children too, even though they’re not here) and I am way more active this time around. I remember days in my pregnancy with Isabella when I would come home from work, plop down on the couch and not move until bedtime. I would spend hours at a time watching movies or reading (I devoured the Twilight series). It was also at about this stage that I stopped exercising. Some of it was due to the fact that moving around was unwieldy and I wasn’t sure what I was allowed to do versus not so I just stopped all together. Some was pure laziness.

This time is much different. Isabella doesn’t allow me to come home and just veg! She wants to play and while there are days when my involvement in play is limited, I do what I can because that time with her is so important.

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I also try to work out 4-5 times a week, mixing in cardio, weights, pregnancy yoga and pregnancy Pilates. I’ve increased the yoga/Pilates to twice a week because the moves are geared toward strengthening, stretching and readying your body for labor and delivery. Plus it feels good!

I’m still trying to be mindful of my eating too. I recall very specifically having this thought in my Isabella pregnancy, “Screw it! I’m getting bigger anyway, might as well enjoy it!” and then I would reach for another cookie, piece of cake, slice of pizza or whatever. I’m trying not to do that this time around. I’m focusing on getting lots of fruits and veggies in my diet along with lean protein and iron. Don’t get me wrong – I definitely indulge in sweets and fatty foods too but not with the same abandon as I had before. Plus, I know how hard it was to lose the nearly 60 lbs. I gained 4 years ago and I do NOT want to go through that again!

On a fun note, the nursery is slowly coming together. We are using the room that was our old office. All that furniture has been moved out and the walls painted yellow.

I will do a more comprehensive, nursery focused post when it’s all done but for now, here’s a sneak peak.

This is how it started…


These were the 2 colors we narrowed it down to (same on both walls, just a different perspective) and we chose the one on the right, which is a little brighter and has less orange in it.

And this is where we’re at today:


That picture is actually pretty close to the true color but here is the official color if you want to see the pure form. It looks bright, and it is, but in a good way. That room is small and the yellow helps open it up. Once we get the baby furniture and other colors in there, I think it will be really cute. I have lots of ideas!

Next step is hauling in Isabella’s old crib and putting that together, along with the changing table. We need to bring up all the baby clothes and supplies out of storage and start organizing them too.  There are lots of other little details but for now, one thing at a time. The décor can be added over time. What’s important is to have the essentials done in time for baby’s arrival home!

I think that’s enough for today! I’ll have another update in 2 weeks!

Wanna see how far I’ve come? Then check these posts out!

Growing Up | Isabella Baby Moments | 26 Weeks

Growing Up

I bet you thought when you read the title of this post that it was about Isabella and how she’s growing so quickly and how fast time is going. 


It’s actually about me and how I made a decision to grow up in one area.  Ready? 

I decided to give up my belly piercing. 

I’ll wait while you pick yourselves up off the floor.

I got my belly button pierced when I was in college. It was my rebellious way of getting around the “no tattoo until you graduate and have a real job” rule laid down by my parents. No tattoo? Fine, I’ll pierce something! 

The belly button seemed to be the safest, easiest, least visible way to do just that. I could hide it on a daily basis yet still have the badge of honor of having a piercing – and of course show it off on the beach or whenever it was appropriate to bare the mid-drift (keep in mind this was back when I had a flat stomach and wasn’t horrified at the thought of anyone seeing my stomach). 

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Obviously that’s not me. My stomach wasn’t that flat.

So I had some strange dude stick a needle through  my skin and never looked back!  Until I got pregnant with Isabella. Oddly, once I started showing, I was immediately concerned about what would become of said piercing. I knew my ever expanding belly would outgrow my normal belly bar and I was sad at the thought of taking it out and the hole growing shut. So I ordered a special pregnancy bar that is longer to accommodate the growth. It worked like a charm! 

28wksIsabella pregnancy, at 28 weeks

With this pregnancy, I didn’t even think about the belly ring until we had the ultrasound and the tech asked me how long I was going to be able to keep it in. I told her what I had done previously and added the comment that I might also just let it go this time.  This was the first time I had ever thought about letting it go. It kind of surprised me and I’ve been thinking about it off and on ever since.

Lately, my “innie” has started to become an “outie” as the baby slowly grows. This has caused the ring/bar to stick out too and become more visible through my clothing.

I knew it was time to make a decision one way or another when it was becoming sore too, as a result of the extra strain. It was either buy a pregnancy bar (I lost my old one in the move) or give up the piercing all together.  I decided it was time to give it up and grow up. 

Not that having piercings as an adult means you’re not a grown up. I just felt that for me, I was holding on to old college days and an image that’s not really me anymore. CJ asked if taking it out would mean I would lose my inner rebel. I don’t think so. I mean, I still have my tattoos (that I got like, the day after I landed “a real job”, thank you very much.  My parents were thrilled) and might even get another one in the next year or so (we’ll see…). 

Also, there are other ways to rebel – change my hair, buy funky clothes, wear white after Labor Day, dip my carrots in peanut butter….

Now that I’ve done it, I kind of feel free. I don’t know why. It’s not like the piercing was holding me back or anything. I guess it just goes to show that it was the right decision.  And my profile is much smoother now too!

Isabella thought it was crazy when I showed her my “new” belly button. I believe her exact reaction was, “Whoa!” It’s caught me off guard a couple times too. Like in the shower. I use a loofah instead of a washcloth and I have to be careful around that piercing that it doesn’t get caught in the mesh. Well, that’s not a problem now! I sometimes spend like an extra minute just scrubbin’ my tummy because it’s so easy! There are also times during the day when I unconsciously rub my belly (it’s a pregnancy thing…like reassurance to the baby that mama is here or to me that the baby is still there) and it’s still a surprise to find it so smooth. 

So there you go. I guess 36 was the magic year for me to grow up! At least in one area. 

Just don’t ask me to give up mac n’cheese.

Got more time? Then click to some other posts!

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What I will… | One Liners | Opportunities

What I Will and Won’t Miss about Being Pregnant

As I enter the third trimester, I’m starting to fantasize about the things I’ll be able to do again once the baby is born. While I recognize that pregnancy is a gift in so many ways (and feel very blessed that we have the opportunity to have another child), I am definitely not one of those people who loves and relishes the 9 months of pregnancy and wants to pop out baby after baby.

I like alcohol too much.


Ok fine. It’s the raw cookie dough that I long for.

At any rate, lately I’ve found myself thinking about all the restrictions that will be lifted come April. Not just health related stuff either. I look around at CJ playing on the floor with Isabella or people wearing cute clothes that they don’t make in maternity sizes and feel envious. So I thought I’d make a list of a few little things I’m looking forward to after our cute bundle of joy makes an appearance!

I can’t wait to…

1. Bend over. Wait, that sounded bad. You know what I mean. It’s the small things isn’t it? Picking up dropped items on the floor…reaching into lower drawers…tying your shoes…shaving.

2. Have the ability to reach across tables, countertops, desks or any other surface. I seriously have a car wash receipt on the dashboard of my car that has been there for 3 weeks because I can’t reach it to throw it away.

3. Sleep / lie on my back and stomach. Do you ever wake up in the middle of the night in a panic because you’re lying on your back and don’t know how long you’ve been in that position? No? Then you’re not pregnant.

4. Cook without getting food on my belly because I don’t realize it’s touching the counter. Many a night have I gone upstairs to change in to jammies and looked in the mirror only to see a line of food stains across my shirt. I guess that explains why Samson sniffs my bump a lot.

5. Run and jump and be more physically active. Ok I don’t really long to go for a run any time soon but I at least want the option! Yes I still work out right now but it’s very low key. I want to sweat dammit!

6. Hold Isabella any way or time that I want. Though, it can be a convenient excuse for those times when she needs doesn’t need to be carried and is just being difficult.

7. Have a lap again. Right now Isabella can’t really snuggle on my lap. She has to sort of sit next to me. She still tries to sit directly on my lap but can’t really lean back and snuggle so it’s awkward. And I hate it.

8. Have a waist. ‘Nuf said.

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9. Wear my regular clothes again. Or cute new clothes for that matter. I’m getting tired of maternity clothes. Wearing the same rotation of shirts all the time gets old fast and I’m running out of ways to change up the outfits. Also I really only have 2 pairs of jeans that fit and look decent so I’m doing a lot of laundry and pretty much live in yoga pants on the weekend. I look forward to the day when I can box up all the maternity clothes and ship ’em to Goodwill!

10. NOT hear comments about how big I’m getting. I eagerly anticipate the days of hearing people tell me how great I look/how much weight I’ve lost/how they almost mistook me for a celebrity. What? It could happen…

There are a few things about pregnancy that I will miss. Ok only 2.

1. Elastic pants – old ladies and Santa Claus have the right idea. Especially at Thanksgiving!

2. Baby movements and kicks – no matter how many times it happens, the baby moving around inside you never gets old

But above all, the # 1 thing I am most looking forward to after pregnancy is getting to know and hold our new little baby! Every other ache, pain and inconvenience is worth getting to that point.

Check these out!

Isabella Baby Moments | The Translator | 26 Weeks

26 Weeks

To quote an age old classic female rock group of the 80’s, “Time, time, time…see what’s become of me….”

Ah the classics…

Happy 26 weeks!

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If you’re anything like me, you find the whole trimesters/months/weeks of pregnancy thing confusing. It doesn’t always add up correctly in my head. But I found this chart online that helps visually show how it all lines up.


So according to this, I’m nearing the end of the 2nd trimester!

This week, as part of the ongoing pregnancy fun, I got to do the Glucose test for gestational diabetes. That means I had to drink a bottle of this super sweet orange liquid (Glucola), within 5 minutes, and then wait an hour for them to draw my blood.

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again – I am not a fast drinker. So getting all the liquid down in 5 minutes was tough. At first it tastes like Orange Crush but after a while it turns nasty and by God I had to stop myself from gagging a couple different times. But I did it!

If I don’t hear anything then all is well. But if the doc calls that means my reading was too high and I’ll have to go in for a follow-up test. So far, no word so that’s a good sign!

Otherwise, all checked out well. Baby’s heartbeat was strong. My weight was fine (I’ve gained a total of 27 pounds so I’m still on track for averaging about 1lb a week). I noticed that I’ve gained more weight in this last 4 weeks than I had the previous 4, most likely due to the holidays and extra eating.

My belly is definitely expanding!

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Let’s compare to the last picture I took, which was at 22 weeks –

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Yep, definitely bigger (oh look, and I’m wearing the same shirt…how awkward…).

Now let’s compare it to how I looked at this stage in my first pregnancy:

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This was taken at 28 weeks. The belly looks about the same but my face is definitely puffier which I think means I was gaining more weight all around and not just with the baby.

It’s harder for me to keep up with Isabella too. I hate that part. She is always on the go and play time with her tends to be like a Catholic church service – stand up, sit down, kneel, run around, sit, run some more, move to another room, and on and on. A lot of times I have to tell her “Sorry, Mommy can’t do this or that”, which I hate. I want to do everything she does but alas, I just can’t.

Isabella is not shy in pointing out how big I’m getting either. I only have a couple winter coats that still fit me and one of them is getting more and more snug. Every time I put it on, Munchkin says something like, “That baby sure is growing Mommy!”

In terms of unpleasant experiences, I got a Urinary Tract Infection this week. I have a history of getting those so I know the symptoms and can tell almost immediately when one is coming. This one showed up on New Year’s Day (happy new year to me!) so I phoned the on call doc and they wrote up an anti-biotic. Normally the docs would want me to wait until I can get in for a urine sample but since I’m pregnant, they didn’t mess around. Any untreated infection could move to the kidneys and that would be bad. So I’m glad we caught it early.

I’ve been having a lot of Braxton Hicks contractions too. That is when your uterus has sporadic contractions. They can start as early as 6 weeks and generally don’t hurt. Instead you feel a tightening or hardening of the uterus. They are nothing to worry about unless you get more than 4 in an hour or they start to hurt. I generally get them when I stand up after having been seated for a long time or after a lot of walking (like doing mega-shopping or something). I had CJ feel my ‘belly’ when I got one last night and he was like, “Whoa!” Your uterus really does feels hard as a rock and it’s kind of freaky the first few times. Isabella poked at it too and said, “Hard!”

We’ve also made a change in some decisions about the nursery. Instead of making it the room right next to Isabella (the famed “polka dotted room“) we’re going to change what is now the office into the nursery.


The office (the room straight ahead with the green sheets on the futon) is the closest room to the Master Bedroom (door on the left) so it would make nighttime feedings/changings easier.


Plus, being further away from Isabella would minimize opportunities of waking her up in the middle of the night to the baby crying (Isabella’s room is the door on the far right and the polka dotted room is the one right next to it). Eventually I’d like the 2 kids to have rooms next to each other as I think that would be fun when they’re older, but for now, we’re going this other route.

Aaaaaaand we probably need to get started…so, I stopped by Lowe’s on the way home and grabbed some paint swatches (for both the nursery and Isabella’s room)! Going to hang them up in the rooms tonight, live with them for a week or so and see what we like!


Yellow and green as possibilities for the nursery and the blues are for Isabella’s room.

Hopefully in the next update I can show some progress pictures of the nursery!

Track my progress!

7 Things… | Weeks 21 and 22 | 20 weeks | 19 weeks