Thursday, November 28, 2013

Thankful


We had a lot to be thankful for last year, but even more this year.  Ashlynn has grown so much in a year and is just our biggest joy.  We are thankful for our health (and healthy pregnancy) and family.  We can't wait to meet our newest addition!


Hope everyone has a safe and happy holiday filled with love and gratitude!

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

[Girl Moms] On Wednesdays We Wear Pink... for healthy body image


Hello! I’m Jenny and I blog over at Growing Up Jacobson. I’m a Stay at Home Mom to an awesome 18-month-old toddler, Callie. I’m feel so honored to be a part of Erinn’s Girl Mom Series! I started following Erinn’s blog through the “Kid Tested, Mom Approved” Link up in September and I immediately feel in love with the Girl Mom series! 

I had always thought if I ever become a mom I wanted to have a little girl. I’m not really sure why as I’m not particularly feminine and I don’t have a lot of close girl friends. I just never envisioned myself raising a boy. Since Callie will be our only child I am very thankful for getting my girl. I love the special bond we have and the things we do together. 


So what does it mean to me to be a girl mom? 


As someone who's studied identity development and gender I think about it all the time. I think about how I’m role modeling to my daughter how to be a strong woman. I also think about how it’s important to let her be herself. If that means princesses and bows then I want to support that. If it means mud and footballs I want to support that too. I think about our activities during the week. I want to be sure I give her a chance to bake but also to use tools. I think it’s just as important for her to pretend feed her baby doll as it is to push around a fire truck. I try to make sure she helps me with chores like laundry and vacuuming just as she helps her dad build her step stool or repair sprinklers. I also think it’s important she sees me hammering nails in the wall and her dad dusting. 


Being a girl mom also means I want to raise my daughter to love herself. I want her to be confident in her skills, abilities but also her own body. With all the images in the media these days I think this is the most important lesson I can teach her. 

A few weeks ago I read this article on body image and little girls. This article just made me sad. 

I do not have my ideal body, or even close, by any means. I have been overweight most of my life. However that hasn’t overshadowed my life. Somehow I managed to grow into an independent confident woman regardless of my weight. I haven’t ever let my weight stop me from doing things I’ve wanted to do or hold me back. Sure I have a little more confidence when I’m healthier but it doesn’t guide my happiness or my identity. I consider myself lucky. 

I certainly am working to be a healthier role model for my daughter. If I can’t physically represent healthy to my daughter I want to make sure she understands her body doesn’t drive who she is. 


I worry that in today's society that my daughter can grow up in a house where the word diet will never be uttered, but will know what it means in elementary school. I don’t want her to ever use the word fat but I worry it will become a regular in her vocabulary before she stops playing with dolls. Callie is a healthy little girl but is a big girl and that means odds are she won't ever be one of those super skinny girls. I want her to be confident in whom she is so that won't matter. I want her identity and self worth to be her own and not tied to her body image. I want to teach her to be proud of all her body can do. I want her to have confidence in her skills, abilities and creativity. I want her to be herself without being weighted down by concerns of what she “should” look like. 


I certainly don’t worry all the time about these things! However they are on my mind when I think about what I want to teach my daughter. I think about all the things as mothers we need to teach our daughters. The list is endless. However the most important thing about being a girl mom to me is being the best woman I can be so I can role model that to my daughter and maybe, just maybe if I’m lucky, pass that strength on to her.

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Handmade Holiday Gift Guide - Gifts for Toddlers

Continuing from yesterday's post, here are some of my favorite handmade gifts for the toddler!


I have been following Rachel from pegbuddies on Instagram for a few months now and am constantly in awe of her talent of creating such accurate little characters on wooden pegs!  She hand paints them all with non-toxic paint on 3.5" solid wood pegs.  She even will do custom sets that resemble your family!

Olliblocks are huge hit!  You can find them at Caravan Shoppe and there are lots of different versions to download.  You print and create them on own your so it's actually a great craft to do with your toddler (depending on age and attention span of course) or maybe with mommy friends over some cheese, wine, and naptime.   Who's coming over?!

We love our Freshly Picked moccasins, as does anyone who's purchased a pair or two... or four.  They are surprisingly really durable even with their soft leather soles and the craftmanship is top notch.  Owner Susan is constantly releasing new amazing colors and different limited edition collections.  There will also be a 25% Off Black Friday Sale so be sure to keep your eyes peeled if you've been on the fence!!

We have a set of alphabet and numbered flash cards that we received as a birthday gift for Ashlynn and she loves playing with them, and I think she's starting to recognize some letters and number because of them.  I think a set like this instant download from Busy Little Bugs shop is a perfect stocking stuffer!

I seriously died when seeing the entire Tea Party Yummies section of Birdtoast's etsy shop.  I know tea parties can be somewhat girlie, but what child doesn't love donuts and cookies?!  I'm pretty sure little boys would love sharing these with their momma, too.  Either way, they are definitely on our wishlist as you know we are tea party enthusiasts over here.

Finally, I love all the finger puppet collections at Julie Pickles.  Princesses, superheroes, a circus act, and Star Wars? Yup.  She's got them all!  Right now you can get your fingers (har har) on any set for 10% off with Coupon Code SSOT10 through December 15th.


Once again, Happy Shopping!!


Monday, November 25, 2013

Handmade Holiday Gift Guide - Gifts for Baby

I thought in honor, or maybe the anti-honor, of Black Friday this week, I would share some of my favorite handmade items that I would love to gift, or hell let's be honest be gifted, for the holidays!

While we definitely do our fair share of Amazon and Target shopping for Fisher Price and even the more eco-friendly Melissa and Doug and Green Toys, I'm always one to promote small businesses, especially those of which that belong to stay at home moms just trying to get their creative on and contribute to their families (kind of like Mallow & Graeme). 

Today, I'm sharing some of my favorite baby gifts.  These would make a great shower gift, gifts to bring a new mom, or of course stick under the tree or menorah (friendly reminder Hanukkah starts this Wednesday!).


I'll be honest, I'm sort of completely OVER the fox trend (yet, I know included it twice) and the whole woodland animal theme in general.  However, I just think these handmade stuffed animals from Blita are too cute to not include.   The dolls are just as adorable but I was trying to stay gender neutral.

The wooden teether and fox print stroller blanket are from etsy shop Bun Bun Baby Design.  I'll admit, I was initially taken with the name Bun Bun Baby, you know since that is what we call Ashlynn's beloved Bunny (and refer to her as well).  After seeing the shop name I started perusing and found so many must have items.  Teethers, blankets, pillows, burp cloths, you name it.  Owner Charlotte was so kind to offer readers 15% off with Coupon Code ERINN15 through Saturday, November 30th.

This boppy cover is to die for!  I already own leggings for Ashlynn in this print from Sugarplum Lane Baby, but almost everything in Ivie Baby shop is totally modern and hands down amazing.  I'd love to do a nursery in any of her coordinating sets.  Sheets, blankets, changing pad covers, bumpers - she does it all with all the trendiest and modern prints out there.

Next is a so cute handcrafted mobile from Baby Jives Co.  All of her mobiles are so unique and there is really something to fit in any nursery.  Owner Jahje was kind enough to offer 10% of your order with Coupon Code strawberryswing valid through December 2nd.

Finally, Friendly Toys makes awesome personalized wooden toys like rattles, push toys, and even rocking horses for infants and toddlers.  



Will you be trying to mix in some handmade holiday action this year? 


Thursday, November 21, 2013

False Alarm

Well, it happened. 

We made a trip to the hospital and were sent home.  I guess it was bound to happen.  I woke Tuesday morning with some minor contractions, nothing out of the ordinary.  I went to my appointment, where I was checked  - 2cm and 70% effaced.  And that must have triggered me for the rest of the day.  The contractions were consistent anywhere from 4-7 minutes apart (based on my non overly accurate iphone app) and lasting at least a minute long.  By the evening I was have pretty bad accompanying back pain and by 9pm more pain overall.  They told me to come in to get checked.

We pretty much knew it wasn't the real the deal, but part of me was terrified of poo-pooing it and then being on the side of the road delivering a baby because I waited too long. 

Well, no change from the morning and were told to go home and wait.  We got back home around 1am.  I finally ate and went to bed.  


Contractions are back to being their good ol' inconsistent selves.  


This is when I'd welcome another broken bag of waters.  
Non-negotiable. 
Going home with a baby.


Anyway, that's all I got. Hopefully she doesn't get too comfortable in there. 

Maybe I can entice her with some turkey, stuffing, and the Hayes family cranberry sauce (seriously, if you hate cranberries - which most do - you life will be changed with our recipe!)


Wednesday, November 20, 2013

[Girl Moms] On Wednesdays We Wear Pink... just not bows




Hi! I'm Kayleigh from Life of Ry's blog. I have a 16 month old daughter named Rylee Grace. When I found out that I was having a girl, I was thrilled. I had a bow holder made and completely filled it with bows. I decked out her wardrobe in all pink and dresses. When Rylee was 2 months old, we were about to venture out to our first dinner outing. I dressed her in the cutest little dress and headband. She screamed bloody murder for about 10 minutes. We couldn't figure out what was wrong. So I decided to undress her. Maybe she had a poopie diaper? And sure enough she stopped crying but had a clean diaper. I redressed her and the screaming started again. OK? So my daughter officially hates dresses and bows. I would frequently try to put her in dresses and bows and every time she would have the same reaction. To this day, she REFUSES to wear bows but is slowly letting me put dresses on her. But not if its too frilly. I eventually realized you know what, my daughter has her own style and that makes her unique. I'm not going to force her to wear anything she doesn't feel comfortable in. I've seen a lot of moms asking fellow moms "how do you keep bows on your daughter?" My response for them would to be just stop trying. As cute as it is, your daughter will look just as cute with out anything on her head :)


Other things make her girly. She loves products. Specifically EOS gloss (which she eats) and my huge round barrell brush (which is the size of her head). She LOVES to dance and play in her kitchen. So I'm not to worried about her potential tom boy ways. But even if she is a tom boy, so what. I've come to realize you know what, my daughter has her own style and that makes her unique. I'm not going to force her to wear anything she doesn't feel comfortable in. I've seen a lot of moms asking fellow moms "how do you keep bows on your daughter?" My response for them would to be just stop trying. As cute as it is, your daughter will look just as cute with out anything on her head :)


 And to be completely honest, with everything I've been through, what my daughter wears is the last of my concern. She's healthy, happy, and is loved and that's all that matters to me. 


Thank you so much to Erinn for having me!

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

[Shortcakes] 19 Months


headband | scarf | shirt | skinnies (similar) | moccs


Time is flying... another month down.  These girls are officially 19(ish) months apart.  We are so ready to start this two under two adventure and we know Ashlynn is going to be a GREAT big sister!

Says:
Nothing overly new here, her vocabulary is still growing all the time, but nothing particularly advanced or shocking.  She's working on colors, numbers, and letters, some she's got down others she confuses.  

Stats:
Only the addition of one more tooth this past month.  11 total.

Loves:
TV.  I usually am pretty strict with only 30 minutes a day.  Sometimes a Mickey in the morning another  15 or so when I'm prepping dinner just to keep her occupied and away from the stove or pulling on me while I'm using knives.  However, with the pregnancy kicking my butt, I've grown a little lax.  She frequently runs into the family room and grabs the remote for me.  I usually can distract her back into the playroom to color or play with something else, but I'd be lying if I didn't say I didn't welcome the breaks to get my feet up.  Of course, she's pretty stuck with Mickey Mouse and will continue to hand me the remote if we are watching something else.  

Blubs Blubs.  aka fish.  She loves all her "blub blubs" - goldfish crackers, pictures of fish, fishy teether we dug out for Kenley.  I'm thinking someone needs to be exposed to some Finding Nemo.

Climbing.  Getting close to getting out of the crib too, thankfully still too short.

Fancy Nancy.  It's the only must read every night. 

Hates:
Same old stuff... she is getting better with the car, even though I know she'd be much happier if we didn't have her rear facing.  She even doesn't mind diaper changes, laying down for me when I ask if she wants to "get clean" after she tells me "poop" (which is for either apparently).   She does wake up and expect to be changed in the middle of the night when wet.  
Sleeps:
Still pretty inconsistent.  Some nights she sleeps through, others she will be up twice.  I'm hoping she starts getting in a better routine once baby arrives, but not sure why that would happen now.

Eats:
Pretty much the same as last month, not crazy about animal protein (chicken or turkey) but does like fish.  Eats almost everything else.  Loving peanut butter and jelly sandwiches lately.   Also cheese quesadillas with beans. 

Does:
Random, hysterically too, spins in circles and then collapses (or trips) dizzy to the floor.   

Colors.  She's getting into coloring big time, which is great because it's a new activity that holds her attention longer than 2 minutes.  She also loved when I let her paint in the bathtub, but I'm a little too... what's the word... not fun? To let her paint elsewhere in the house.  

Little shadow.  She's definitely entering the mimicking stage, yelling at the dogs after I do, needing to eat whatever I am, and of course doing what I'm doing. 

Goes:
Sort of the opposite of goes, but she had her first all day babysitter experience last week when we had the wedding.  She's been watched for maybe an hour or two while I had doctor appointments or whatever, but never a whole day with someone other than daddy and mommy.  I was here until about 9am, but Nanny (my stepmother in law) came over and watched her all day, all meals, bath, and bed.  While she woke at 5am the next morning, she did sleep through night!  It was a great success and definitely let my nerves about being in the hospital for delivery ease up a bit. 




Hopefully next month we have lots of new things to track, like being a big sister!


Monday, November 18, 2013

(Wedding) Weekend Wrap Up

Let's start with Thursday,  wedding festivities kicked off with the rehearsal dinner.  Nothing like a five course feast of Italian food to fill this pregnant girl's belly!  Definitely got us excited for the big day!

Friday started bright and early around 6:30am, after wake ups from Ashlynn at 12:30 and 1:30.   I got her ready for the day and packed up my stuff and waited for her Nanny (my step mother in law) to arrive to watch her.  I got on the road and to the hotel to get the bride to be ready for her big day!



Of course, us maids got our hair did and put on pretty dresses, too.

We headed out for pictures in Washington Square and got to sneak peek the Bride and Groom have their 'first look'.  


After photos, we headed over to the venue to wait for guests to arrive and make it official.


The ceremony was beautiful (as was the bride), the cocktail hour was out of this world - shirley temples and cranberry ginger ales are where it's at (but really the food was out of control), dinner was delicious, and the party was a blast.   Even if I only did make it until 10 o'clock, but what can I say at 37 weeks pregnant.  I had swollen legs and major contractions going on by that point.  I also am having major FOMO (fear of missing out) after seeing how the party turned after dinner for those who were able to imbibe.   

hashtag goodtimes. hashtag jealous.

Overall it was a great night and I'm so honored I got to be a part of the big day.


Saturday, the weather was awesome so we ran out to the outlets in the morning to pick up a few things and then came home to nap.  I ended up waking up that morning with a cold and was just wiped out.  Nothing like labor lingering and having a major head cold.  Hoping it passes quickly.

The rest of the day we played, went to the park, and grabbed a bite to eat out for dinner.  I went to bed early to get some rest to fight this cold. 

Sunday we got our Christmas tree!  We aren't planning on putting it up until after Thanksgiving, but it'll probably depend on this little one's arrival... and my patience. 


Speaking of Christmas, we received our personalized version of Night Before Christmas.  I'm really impressed with how great it turned out and how quickly we received it.  


Today is the last day to sign up for the newsletter and receive the 30% Off promotion code.   The code is good for one year and can be used on any item - not just The Night Before Christmas!  


A big thanks to My Chronicle Books for sponsoring this promotion!


Lastly, we gave this baby an eviction notice.  We walked the neighborhood, twice, and I'm drinking red raspberry leaf tea like it's my job (also feels great with this cold, bonus).  I'm glad she's staying put, but I'd be lying if I said I wasn't anxious to meet her!!

Hope everyone had a great weekend!!

Friday, November 15, 2013

[Giveaway] Georgia & Jane Holiday Giveaway

I might have noticed yesterday, I'm getting a big kick out of picking out coordinating outfits for the girls.  I'm having even more fun stock piling matching headbands and bows and right now I'm obsessed with the entire Georgia & Jane Holiday Collection.

You may remember Melissa from her incredible On Wednesdays We Wear Pink post, well she's so kindly offered to giveaway 2 items from her Holiday Collection!


The perfect gift for your little girl(s), nieces, friends with girls, or holiday Secret Santas!

(or even yourself!)



Good Luck and Happy Friday!

Thursday, November 14, 2013

[Child Style] Making my list and checking it... thrice.

This is somewhat sacrilege, to be skipping over Thanksgiving like this.  Especially since it's my favorite holiday.  However, with a baby who may make her arrival anytime in the next 3 weeks or so and then turn our lives upside down in a sleep deprived newborn and toddler adjustment, I feel it's best to come prepared.  

Come to Christmas that is.  

I've already completed about half my Christmas shopping and have the other half figured out - for the most part.  I'm planning to break out the decor this weekend and have some new items to add already flagged.  And lastly, I've planned our outfits.  I previously mentioned, how I was hoping to use Kenley's newborn session as a dual family/holiday session.  Basically, lots of adorable newborn pics, but even more sister shots, because what's one cute baby when you can have two!

I have some other outfits for the season in mind, but here are my Holiday Photo (for our Christmas Card), Christmas Morning, and Seeing Santa outfits.

1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8

I have a few things planned for Kenley for her newborn pictures, but for some of the "holiday" pictures with her big sister I was hoping to stick with an ivory, gold, and red look.   I figure these outfits are neutral enough too that they could be easily framed in the house and not necessarily scream Christmas (especially we keep the tree out of the background or printed in black in white). 

Best of all, the pieces can all be worn again through the winter.  Can't say the same about matching tartan plaid dresses or reindeer fair isle jumpers. 

Though, that'd be so flipping cute right?

1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6

Nothing like cozy plaid and red pajamas.  Flannel and fleece to keep us warm along with lots of coffee (caffeine, again we'll have a newborn... she might actually meet Santa depending on her sleep schedule!), maybe some Bailey's to spike it with (it is a holiday after all), and some warm ewwiegooey cinnamon buns.  I'd love to do a big breakfast of eggs, turkey bacon, pancakes and the works, but we'd probably never eat it all nor do I want focus time over the stove instead of spending time with my two girls.    I'm sure we'll add in a healthy dose of leftover Christmas cookies too, why not?
1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5

I'm not sure what our plans for Seeing Santa will really be.  If I just take Ashlynn before Kenley arrives or if I attempt to take them both.  I think I'd rather keep a newborn out of a germ infested mall, wake her from a slumber to sit in a stranger's lap, and deal with all my post partum fun while waiting in a long line of antsy children (including my own).  Yeah, I'm being really positive about the experience.  This post just went from holiday cheer to holiday jeer, right?  Either way, Ashlynn will be getting her picture with the Big Man in the Red Suit, and I'm hoping to use the Jason Wu for Target dress I picked up last year on double clearance in hopes it'd fit this year.  Red tights, red cardigan, moccs, and a George and Jane holly headband complete her look.  Cute right?

So there's that.  Check. Check. Check. 


Take that Santa!



Wednesday, November 13, 2013

[Girl Moms] On Wednesdays We Wear Pink... an adoption story


I was beyond excited to see an email come through from Erinn with the subject being "On Wednesday We Wear Pink"!! I am so honored to be able to guest post on this wonderful subject.


Hi I'm Ashley from "Life on the Parsons Farm".  I live on a mini farm. I'm a wife, teacher, blogger and a new mom to our adorable daughter, Ellie!

My whole life I wanted to be a mom. I had dreams of having two boys and two girls. Four children are the perfect number to me and I still want to have four kids.


I did not have the opportunity to become a mom to Ellie in the most traditional way, we adopted her.  I have struggled with infertility for years and we finally made the decision last year to adopt and we got our sweet little Ellie Faith in May 2013.  She truly is the light of my life.  Going through the adoption process we decided to leave the gender of our child up to God.  Just like it would've been if we were having our own biological child.  I was unsure if I wanted to have a boy or girl first, but secretly deep down I really did want to have a girl.  God knew my heart and matched us up to have this sweet sweet little girl.


There is so much more to being a girl mom than just the frilly dresses and cute headbands and hair bows (though she does wear a lot of those!)  It is having that special bond with that sweet little girl and being able to understand things that she goes through and help guide her through your own personal experiences.  Being a girl myself I can really relate with things that Ellie will come across as she grows older.


I am looking forward to creating that special bond that only a mother and daughter can have with Ellie. And I am looking forward to tea parties, playing with dolls, wearing mommy and me outfits and talking about that cute boy that she meets at school or elsewhere. I can't wait to braid her hair and give her pigtails and have her share in the experience all of the joys that I had growing up; dancing, cheerleading, and horseback riding.


Going through the adoption process is definitely an emotional journey. It has its ups and downs just like I'm sure any pregnancy does.  While I didn't have to deal with morning sickness or contraction pains, I did worry in the back of my mind of whether or not we would be chosen by a nice birth mom or if this adoption would go through.  Ellie is actually the second baby that we were matched up with. We had been matched up with a different birth mom that after finding out the gender of her baby decided to keep it.  Dagger to my heart.  God had a better plan and knew that this new birth mom that we got set up with just two months later was going to be the perfect match for us and bring us the most beautiful, healthy, and well behaved little girl.  The process was long and arduous.  We were posed with many questions. We had to answer many questions I'm sure most parents today don't even think about when they're pregnant with their own child.  In the end it all worked out, and I feel that we were much better prepared. By having all of those questions and needing to answer them, to really understand what our parenting style would be like and to start that great communication between mother and father. I also had fears, would I really be able to love this little one as my own?  YES I could and I can. Sometimes I find myself looking at her trying to decide who she looks more like, myself or my husband!!  Then I have to remind myself that I actually didn't give birth her!!


I am looking forward to having more children and can't wait to get a sister for Ellie. To see that special bond that only sisters can have, she's going to be a wonderful big sister and such a great helper.

While she doesn't necessarily look exactly like me we still can dress-up in  matching outfits and she is still my little mini me.


Thank you Erinn so much for asking me to be a part of this wonderful series and letting me share just a little bit about myself and Ellie.

-Ashley 


Tuesday, November 12, 2013

[Sew Fun] Project #10: Pom Trim Curtains



Finally!  I spent 2 straight months sewing teepees and teepees only, now that I finally finished my orders and vacationed the shop, it's time to prep for baby girl!  I did manage to sew a receiving blanket, but I'm not going to count that as part of my sewing challenge since I made a blanket for Project #7.  

For Ashlynn's nursery, I splurged on her curtains.  Since we didn't go with a traditional bedding set with an expensive bumper and save money with some other items, I spent a little more on custom black out curtains by Rocky Top Design.  And I still love them to this day.  

Since Kenley's room has 3 windows (single on wall and double on the other) and we are trying to do her room at lowest cost possible, I thought I'd try to DIY some curtains and just replace the (ugly) black out shades that were originally installed. 


For the curtains, I wanted something simple and went back to a style I had originally loved for Ashlynn's room.  The Pom Pom Trim curtain.  I even included them in my original inspiration board for Kenley's room as a must have item. 


While, Anthro no longer sells them, you can find similar versions at Serena & Lily or PB Teen.  Both of which sell for approximately $200, give or take, for the floor to ceiling length I was looking for.  I picked up a some plain white Ikea Ritva panels, which were $24.99 for a pair.  I had a third panel on hand from our previous house since I only used one in our new house's kitchen.  After wavering between aqua or black poms, I decided the black would have more contrast and would be more versatile if I ever wanted to use them in another room.

I've seen lots of DIY tutorials for these popular pom trimmed curtains, most recently on 6th Street Design SchoolHoney & Fitz, and House for Five.  Basically, this is nothing new or innovative. You can do it the way I did, or totally cheat and use a hot glue gun.


Materials
3 Curtain Panels (98"L each)
9 Yards Pom Fringe (approximately 104" for each panel)
Sewing Machine 
Thread in matching colors
Hot glue gun


I first pinned the pom fringe to the edge of the panel making sure there was enough left over to cover the pole pocket on both sides.  I then stitched the fringe using black thread on top and white on the bobbin to keep the stitching hidden. 


I stopped sewing right before the pole pocket, so I wouldn't sew it shut (obviously).   Now, if you wanted, you could hand stitch the trim around the pocket.... but really?


So, yeah, I used hot glue on the front and the back.  


A quick ironing and boom, knock off do-it-yourself curtains on the cheap.  All said and done, this ran me under $50 total. 



Two more projects to go!



Monday, November 11, 2013

[Bumpdate] 8th Month

I made it!  Well, I'm not quite Full Term, but I made it past the point where I went into pre-term labor with Ashlynn.  Of course, now after being terrified all pregnancy of having this baby even earlier, I'm now convinced she's set up shop and I'll need an induction.

My actual due date is December 6th, so we have less than a month to go, and to be honest I'm ready to meet this girl any day she decides to grace us with her presence.  I find myself thinking frequently with Ashlynn, how much I love her and am so glad I've gotten all these days with her, and that while scary, I'm glad she arrived early because it was only extra time and a head start I got to building our relationship and loving this little amazing person.  I still have a hard comprehending the concept of my heart doubling, but it's getting clearer, and I just want to hold this new baby in my arms.

How far along? 36 Weeks (technically 36 weeks 3 days)

Total weight gain/loss: As of my last appointment on Wednesday, I'm up 24lbs.  

Maternity clothes? Mostly leggings, mat jeans when I need to look like something other than a super pregnant mom of a toddler, and a mix of hoodies, my husbands thermals, and real clothes when wearing said mat jeans.

Stretch marks? Not yet.  I ran out of my Mama Bee Belly Butter and don't really want to buy a whole new tub for a month or less... instead I've been using Bio-Oil which is also made to avoid or reduce stretch marks. 

Symptoms: Back pain, bad back pain.  The same back pain I had with Ashlynn from 4 months on.  I'm happy it's only kicked in this last month or so, but I spend most evenings on the heating pad.  Sleep is actually alright if Ashlynn sleeps.  Acid reflux is insane, but Earth Mama Angel Baby Heartburn Tea is awesome.  Oh and still having some vision issues, most likely my low blood pressure. 



Sleep: Again, not too bad all things considered.  Daylight Savings killed us, but we seem back on track now.  I do pee at least 1-2x a night, but otherwise it's been okay.  

Miss Anything?  Starting to miss more foods.  Find myself craving salads with goat cheese or gorgonzola or turkey sandwiches (which I don't even eat), and dippy eggs.  I'm also excited to finally have a drink!

Oh and I really wanted cookie dough yesterday.

Movement: Yes.  Lots. Even though she's got to be running out of room, she's still moving around like a crazy woman.  Ashlynn loves putting her hands on my belly and feeling her kick!  


Food cravings:  Milk. Chocolate Pudding. Iced Coffee.  I've actually been more adverse to things lately, even my beloved carbs, just not feeling it lately.  

Anything making you queasy or sick: No nausea, but again, just not feeling a lot foods.


Have you started to show yet: Obviously.  


Baby is a: GIRL!!!

Belly Button in or out? Yeah, it's out. 


Wedding rings on or off? On. 

Happy or Moody most of the time:  Goes back and forth.  

Looking forward to:  Meeting Kenley!!  I'm really not even that nervous about labor (which means it'll probably be hell, right?!)  I just figure it's really out of my hands, just want to get her here safely.