And How

Monday, December 19, 2011

Our Bargain Baby!

As I've mentioned before, this pregnancy was a surprise more than either of my other pregnancies.  Although we wanted another baby, our "plan" was to wait until next year (2012) to really make an effort.  One of my concerns early on in this pregnancy was how we would afford to get "baby things" during the most expensive time of the year (I've never had a winter baby before).  We set a limit of $500 to buy everything for the baby, including a crib, dresser, and carseat, but I had my doubts knowing how expensive these things can be and also knowing that we would need to buy more than just these three things (like clothes and diapers).  Even though this was our third child, almost all of our "required" baby gear was still being used by Penn and Jude, had been sold, or given away.  We were starting pretty much from scratch and I was stressed about it.

One day, I realized that all the things this baby would "need," were things we already had (mommy's milk, a safe home, and a loving family).  Everything else would just be considered extra.  I prayed for God to provide us with some of these "extras" and He absolutely did!  Every time I look at Anna's completed room, I am so thankful for the way God  has shown his love for us.  Sometimes, I think we feel guilty for asking God for things we consider to be "frivolous," but we forget that He is the "God of all Comfort," and "The God who Provides!"  As I said in this post, God cares about the little things too...the extras.

In this post, I would like to share with you some of the things that He provided us with, once we let him do his thing... (Side note:  Isn't it amazing how smoothly things go when we stop trying to control everything???)

Changing Table-$30
Pack bought this from a State Sale while he was traveling with work.
Crib and Mattress-$150
IKEA...we couldn't find a used one in good shape for this price!
Happened upon this at a yard sale and repainted it.
Rocking Chair-Free!
My Mother's Day present two years ago that I FINALLY repainted and found a home for:)

The rest of the pictures are things we bought from Craigslist...our favorite resource!
Moses Basket-$30

Carseat (new with tags and no recalls)-$35
Cloth diapers (over 80)-$220

The total amount we spent to furnish the nursery was $485 (under budget!!!) AND  we have the added bonus of not needing to add disposable diapers to our shopping list when Anna arrives!  Cloth diapers are a little more work, but every time I wash these diapers, I'll be thinking of how much money we're saving by not having to buy disposables.  $220 is a great price for diapers for one child that will last from birth until potty training!  I've also had a shower given by family where I got a bunch of cute clothes and accessories, bought some clothes on consignment, and received some way-cute hand-me-downs from Anna's cousin, Carmon!  We're set!

Monday, December 12, 2011

Good news/Not so good news...

I had my 32 week check-up this morning (although I'll be 33 weeks tomorrow...oh well) and everything went smoothly.  I'm feeling great, baby is growing and in position, and I got to hear that sweet heartbeat.  I was mostly excited about the fact (or the FLUKE) that I only gained 2 oz. in the past two weeks.  I'm sure the doctor didn't mean that I should leave his office and go to Dunkin Donuts to indulge in a creme-filled donut, a pumpkin muffin, and a sausage, egg, and cheese croissant, but he didn't specify, so I just assumed it was okay...  I'm pretty thrilled that I'll probably finish this pregnancy just a little lighter than my end weights with Penn or Jude.

That was the good news.

The not so good news (not really bad...just disappointing, I guess) was when I started asking questions about what being Group B Strep-positive would mean for my upcoming labor and delivery.  I had pretty quick labors with both of the boys (even with inductions, which is fairly unusual) and chances are that I'll have another quick one with this little girl.  The concerning part is that if I end up at 39 weeks being 4 cm dilated, but not going into labor, odds are I'll end up having another induction so they can make sure I have antibiotics in my system for delivery.  I REALLY, REALLY want to avoid an induction for a lot of reasons, but that being said, I want to make sure my baby gets the dose of antibiotics that she needs to protect her.  From researching, I know that the risk is small that there would be anything that would go wrong even if we didn't get it, but in this situation (even if it is a precaution more than a necessity), I feel that the risks outweigh the benefits of foregoing the antibiotics, so I will be getting them.  On a more positive note, my doctor informed me that generally, a fast labor puts women at lower risks for passing an infection on to their babies, so that actually works in my favor and will give me peace of mind if I actually DO go into labor on my own this time.

Basically, if I start dilating early (as I usually do), then at 37 weeks, all systems are go for plan "Baby Makes Five."  This pregnant lady is going to do a lot of walking, eating pineapple, getting foot rubs, and doing "anything else" (wink, wink) that safely and naturally induces labor;).  Please pray that the rest of this pregnancy is uneventful and that labor happens on it's own, as this something I really feel would be best for me and baby.  The middle of January can't come too soon for me!

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

One of these things is not like the others...

From the very early stages of this pregnancy, I have said that it was "different."  Originally, "different" meant "miserable," but over the course of the last few months, it's becoming less miserable and just more....ummm..."different." 

Here are a few of the differences I've noticed in all of my pregnancies:

Morning Sickness:  With this pregnancy, I've actually gotten sick less than either of the others, but during the first 10-12 weeks, I felt sick 24-7.  I drank and ate ginger snacks and drinks, I tried accupressure bands, I stopped cooking (or even walking in my kitchen) and I had to stop using almost all of my "natural" home cleaning products because I couldn't stand the smell of vinegar and tea tree oil.  I think Pack thought I was in the early stages of death since I wouldn't get off the couch to do anything.  It was a tough couple of months.

Heartburn:  Whoa...honestly, I didn't even know what heartburn really felt like before this pregnancy.  Yuck. Gross. Gag.  I'll be glad when my digestive system stops revolting.

Swelling:  There hasn't been any.  Well, I do have some swelling after I'm on my feet all day and after traveling, but nothing compared to the multiple liters of fluid that were in my legs and feet during my pregnancies with Penn and Jude.  My leg/foot swelling was actually pretty legendary at my former workplace and are "fondly" remembered as my "telephone poles" (thanks, Pack).

Weight Gain:  After all the fast food I consumed during my first trimester, I'm still shocked it hasn't been more out of hand.  The way things are looking, I will weigh about 10 pounds less this pregnancy than at the end of my pregnancies with Penn and Jude (where I ended up tipping the scales at +50lbs and +30lbs higher than my start weight with each child respectively).  I'm not done yet, so I hate to make any premature judgments on this, but with every doctor's appointment, I'm shocked I haven't gained more, although my belly definitely looks "bellier!"  So far, I've gained 15 pounds...I'm cool with that!

Baby Movement:  Most active baby yet (in utero, at least).  I've never had one keep me up at night moving, so this makes me really nervous about the little personality to follow...

How I Feel:  Overall...less anxious, more impatient.  I have decided that this baby will definitely be born as naturally as possible (i.e., no epidural or induction), so there is some nervousness that comes with this decision, but overall, I know I can birth a baby and I think the birth process will be much more enjoyable if it happens the way it was designed to.  I do feel that I'm having to educate myself from scratch on the labor and birth process, but I'm learning a ton and looking forward to putting all my new knowledge into practice.  I'm so ready to do this.

Getting Prepared:  The baby's room has been completed for a month now.  Unprecedented.  Yeah...we could use a second coat of paint on the walls and a few pieces of art, but so long as she has clean sheets to sleep on and a few diapers lying around, I feel prepared.

Big Difference:  IT'S A GIRL!  I still am not 100% sold on this (which is why the nursery is painted blue with girly fabrics (easy to change if we're wrong), but I think this is the main reason this pregnancy has been so different.  I will not be suffering any gender disappointment if "Anna" turns out to be a "Silas (my choice for boy's name)," but I have had fun shopping in the "pink" department in the meantime:)

And just for comparison, here are a few pictures taken from each of my pregnancies...
8 Months with Penn (round all over)!
9 Months with Jude...whoa!
8 Months with Anna...hanging in there!