Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Husband: Holiday Gift Guide

Finally, after listening to Christmas music since the day after Thanksgiving, it actually IS beginning to look a lot like Christmas. Our house has been fully decked out in Christmas gear since the first weekend in December. Mary Jane is a mega bit of a Christmas nut, so we've been in Christmas mode since the first day it was socially acceptable to deck the halls.

We've gotten all of the light stringing, garland hanging and tree assembling out of the way. We even got all of our gift shopping out of the way. Still, I know there are a lot of people who are still shopping for their pregnant wives, and I thought I'd offer a little help.

For the record, I bought Mary Jane a new dishwasher. Before you say how sexist that is, she bought me an oven in return. And at least I didn't get her some of these things.

Fitness equipment

If you’re stupid enough to get your wife unrequested fitness equipment, you get a big fat F in husbanding. If you’re stupid enough to get your PREGNANT wife fitness equipment, you probably won’t have a wife to shop for much longer.
Verdict: NO.

Pregnancy pillow

This looks like something the StayPuft Marshmallow Man pinched off after a bad burrito. Despite that, it's great. So long as you know that this will eventually take your side of the bed during the third trimester when you’re banished to the couch.
Verdict: Yes.

This t-shirt

This is perfect if you want to get shot. The pregnant woman would be cleared on all charges. 
Verdict: I'm surprised that a person who obviously has no experience with pregnant women is, in fact, making t-shirts for pregnant women. NO.

 Belly cast kit 

Can you say new centerpiece!
Verdict: NO, although you'll need something wife-shaped to snuggle with after she boots you to the couch.

Dr. Watters Maternity Air Bed

Believe it or not, this is marketed for pregnant women...but I find it hard to believe that the pregnant wife will be the one sleeping on this after she opens her new belly cast kit on Christmas day.
Verdict: NO.

Pregnancy lingerie

Yes, I did Google image “pregnancy lingerie” and felt dirty. 
Verdict: Yes...but let's get real here. A husband getting a wife lingerie is like getting her a bowling ball. He's going to get a whole lot more out of it than she is.

"Pregzilla" coffee mug

Giving your wife a nickname with "zilla" at the end is bad news. This must have been made by the t-shirt guy because the rest of it says "Feed the Beast."
Verdict: NO. Unless you want to see an actual Pregzilla. 
Pregnancy belly painting kit

When you just can’t wait for Easter to get here.
Verdict: NO. Save the finger painting for the kid.

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Wife: The last ____________ [insert activity] before the baby comes...

So we are in the holiday season.  Chris and I had a wonderful Thanksgiving.  We had a great time seeing everyone.  Chris even felt Susan move on Thanksgiving Day.  I had just finished a snack that afternoon – what is lovingly known as “mo cake” – and the sugar must have spurred her on.  She gave three hard kicks (which based on her current weight were like the strongest little thumps, so cute) and he felt all three!  His whole face lit up!  I knew she was trying extra hard so that he could feel her.  By the way, “mo cake” is pound cake.  It got its nickname thanks to my little cousin Lilli, who when she was younger than she is now (she is 4), used to get this pound cake at my grandparents’ house.  She apparently would ask for “mo cake” (more cake) and the name has stuck since.

I think I love "mo cake" almost as much as Lilli.  Or at least, I did while we were in Tupelo!
 Chris also excelled during Thanksgiving at playing pretend.  I don’t know what he was so concerned about.  After we ate on Thanksgiving, Lilli asked me, Chris and Philip to play “airplane” and then we played “school.”  Playing airplane meant we actually pretended we were on an airplane.  Playing school is pretty self-explanatory.  Lilli wanted me to be the teacher.  So we all sat up in my grandparents’ family room and played school.  We practiced letters and writing names and we did math.  For example, I would hold one pillow, then pick up two more and ask how many pillows I had.  Lilli nailed it every time.  Philip could use a little remediation.  Then Lilli told us it was nap time.  Chris had a blast and did an excellent job as one of the students.  He is going to be an excellent dad.  And while he may not have much experience with little girls, he is fun and willing to learn.  And that is all that will matter to Susan.

Playing school.  They pulled out their mats and laid down for nap time!

While we were all together, especially on Friday the day we left, people kept mentioning that this was the last Thanksgiving without Susan.  And as my aunt Mimi pointed out, the next time I saw everyone, we would have a baby.  That was a little eye opening.  But now, I keep thinking about all of our last activities without Susan.  And the thing is, in my brain, last Thanksgiving was the “last Thanksgiving” without her.  Because while she isn’t here yet, she is definitely a part of the family already.  Pregnancy is kind of like being in limbo.  There was the time before Susan (before we were pregnant) and there will be the time after Susan (once she arrives and we are parents).  But right now, we are stuck in this weird limbo time in which she consumes our thoughts, never letting me forget for one second that she is in there, but she hasn’t made her debut yet.

So now we are preparing for the last Christmas before Susan.  Or really, the last Christmas before we are parents!  As many of you know, the Christmas season is my favorite time of year.  I absolutely love everything about it.  I love shopping for my friends and family, shopping for our angel from the angel tree, and listening to Christmas music so much that I will have heard each version of “Sleigh Ride” and “Walking in a Winter Wonderland” imaginable.  I love eating off of our Christmas dishes, sitting by the tree at night while we read the Advent devotion, making cakes for my neighbors, going to the Nutcracker, and making a gingerbread house.  I especially love the Sundays in Advent as we light the Advent wreath, listen to the beautiful music and prepare for Jesus’ birth, the true reason for the season.  Thankfully, I married someone who loves all of these things too (or at least, he tolerates all the repetitive Christmas music because he loves me so much).  And I cannot wait to share all of this with our daughter.  I can’t wait until she is old enough to put on her Christmas apron and help make the Gingerbread House and make Christmas cookies to take to the nursing home.  I can’t wait until that first Christmas where she is old enough to believe and she sees how magical it is to come down the stairs that Christmas morning.  It is going to be so great.  So I am very excited that this is our last Christmas before Susan makes her arrival.  I cannot wait for all the new activities we get to do once she gets here. 
Not quite as good looking as one of ours, but you can se the general idea!

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Husband: You don't want to see me in a leotard.

It's occurred to me that I know absolutely NOTHING about raising a little girl. If we were having a boy, I’d be set. Give him a ball, an action figure or a bucket of dirt, and he’s good to go for hours.

You are not helping the stereotype, Pigpen.

Girls, on the other hand, are a bit out of my realm of familiarity.

I have a younger brother, Zack, who was into all the same things I was – Ninja Turtles, bugs and getting dirty for no good reason. I had two boy cousins, Ryan and Mason, who were born when I was around 12 years old. Zack and I were just big toys for them. My experience with them wasn’t much different than when I was a kid.

I DO have a girl cousin, Lindsey, who was born at the same time as Ryan and Mason, but she was always forced into participating in whatever me, Zack, Mason and Ryan were doing. There was a whole lot of wrestling, football and video games, but sadly for Lindsey, no tea parties.

Now that I'm older and "more mature", I'm aware that little Susan is probably not going to be very interested in helping me and Optimus Prime defeat the Decepticons...or taking Nerf darts off of her forehead...or getting in a marathon session of Madden on Saturday afternoon. And turning down her tea party invitation so I can watch the Panthers on Sunday would put me squarely in the “Terrible Father” category. 

Pink mean its a girl toy, Susan, I promise.

I’m going to have to experience a completely new childhood once Susan gets here. I’m starting from scratch. All of the boy knowledge I gained as a kid is irrelevant.

Join your tea party? Maybe…is burping allowed? Should I bring a koozie?

Play with your Barbie dolls? What do you mean she doesn't come with jungle camo and assault rifle accessory?

Help you practice your ballet lessons? You don’t want to see me in a leotard, I promise.

Basically, I'm working from scratch here. Instead of trying to take down Skeletor alongside He-Man, I’m going to be asking Barbie to the prom. No more explosions, high speed car chases or gunfire…instead I’ll have to learn about words like “smock” and “doily” and “pliĆ©.” May the good Lord help me.

And what do little girls even wear? I don’t even know the difference between a shirt and a blouse…and apparently there’s a big one. When I was a kid, I had a Pee Wee Herman sweatshirt that I loved. It was badass. Kids and teachers alike would high five me in the hallway when I wore it. Is Pee Wee still cool? Can Susan wear that on her first day of kindergarten? 

We couldn't figure out why nobody came to Susan's birthday party.

I’m sure I’m exaggerating a bit as to what little girls are like, but that’s my point. I don’t really know. Hopefully she’ll like to watch baseball with me, shoot some hoops or play with the remote control car that I’m going to insist on getting her for her 8th birthday. Those things, I know I can handle. It’s everything else that I’m worried about.

What I really need is someone in my life who’s had experience being a little girl…who knows what little girls should wear out in public…who can remind me that I sure as hell better not dress that Barbie doll in white after Labor Day. OH WAIT. My wife probably knows those things. I can honestly say that I would be 150% unprepared for Susan if not for my wife. She has already started a wardrobe for her that is currently devoid of Pee Wee Herman merchandise.

When it comes Tea Party Time, I won’t be flying solo. It’s daunting enough having a kid, but even more for me personally because I don’t really know how to connect with a little girl. So since it’s Thanksgiving, I want to say that I’m thankful for my wife who is making sure that Susan is going to have the best – and most appropriate – clothing, bedding and toys. We have girly bedding, nursery decorations and clothes. It’s not even all pink either. I should also say that I’m thankful that I have in-laws, aunts and uncles and a ton of friends who have raised little girls and are still alive so I can ask them questions. Even further, I’m thankful that my parents, grandparents and my entire family will be there to help out and calm me down when Susan has a rash, a cough or a boyfriend.

Friday, November 18, 2011

Wife: Baby Thumps

So it is my fault that we haven’t blogged in a while.  We have just been really busy lately, but we have agreed to turn over a new blogging leaf.  We started this so we could share this fun time with everyone, and I have definitely dropped the ball.  But from here on out, I vow to do better.

So last time, Chris revealed how we “cheated” to find out if we were having Susan or Charlie.  For those of you who know me at all, you know that I don’t do well with 1) surprises; 2) change; and 3) patience.  Everyone thinks it’s funny that I don’t handle change well – considering what is about to happen in our lives in about 4 months – but it’s true.  Since I got together with my better half, I have learned how to go with the flow much better.  So I feel better equipped to handle our little bundle when she gets here mostly because Chris will be here too!

Susan Louise Cook at 17 weeks!
 Anyway, so we cheated to find out that we were having Susan.  I use the pronoun “we” loosely, because I called Chris on a Friday afternoon and said that Prenatal Peek could see us the following Monday morning and talked him into it.  I really just could not stand to wait any longer.  And let’s face it, he was ready to know, so it’s not like I dragged him kicking and screaming.  He was pretty excited too.  So the ultrasound revealed that our little bundle did in fact have lady parts.  The day of that ultrasound, she was completely upside down, as though she was standing on her head.  It was amazing.  We also confirmed her lady parts a week later at the doctor's office.

Very impressed with her flexibility.  She did not get that from me!
 That was 3 weeks ago.  She has grown a lot in these last three weeks.  Or really, we have grown a lot.  I can no longer see my feet when I stand up straight and look down.  I have to bend at the hip to get a good look at them.  Also, bending down has become a little more difficult and kind of uncomfortable.  Try securing a basketball to your belly and do a little bending down.  It is kind of like that only my bump doesn’t move at all. 

Very early 3D shot.  That is her arm covering her face - she is telling us that she is tired of taking pictures.  Diva!
 As far as my weight gain goes, I have no idea how much weight I have gained.  Weight gain was my biggest fear with pregnancy.  That may sound horrible, but it is the truth.  I have always been conscious of my weight, so the thought of packing on the pounds made me super scared.  The first 8 weeks, when the hormones were getting going and it was still August, I got really bloated and swollen.  I also OBSESSED about my weight and what I was eating.  Finally, my mom and husband told me to chill out.  My mom suggested that I ask the doctor not to tell me my weight unless it became a health concern.  So I did.  When I go for my appointments, I weigh backwards and the nurse writes down my weight but doesn’t tell me what it is.  (They were not that surprised with my request, apparently a lot of pregnant women don’t want to know how much they weigh.)  I feel like my weight gain is on track, but I have no idea.  And not knowing has let me enjoy the pregnancy so much!

Susan has grown so much that yesterday, for the first time, I could feel her move when I put my hand on my belly.  It was absolutely the neatest thing ever.  I first thought I felt it when I was driving to work.  Before when I felt her, the movements felt like flutters or butterflies.  But yesterday, it felt like a thumping.  So I put my hand on my belly and felt just the slightest vibration.  Since I was in the car, I wasn’t sure that it was here that I was feeling.  But apparently, Susan was just getting started.  She was very active.  I definitely felt her later on, and one time, she moved so big that she moved my finger.  Now I just need her to wiggle some when I get home so her dad can feel her too!

Waving goodbye!
 I probably won’t post again until after Thanksgiving.  So I hope everyone has a wonderful holiday with friends and family.  We are flying to Mississippi for a quick visit with my extended family.  And we definitely have a lot to be thankful for.  I am thankful for Chris, Susan, my family, Oscar, my friends, our Sunday School students, our church and for my job.  We are truly blessed.  Happy Thanksgiving everyone!

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Husband: Sweep the Leg

After polling our friends, family members and the kids in our Sunday school class, people were overwhelmingly in agreement that Susan/Charlie would in fact come out a Charlie. With the exception of almost our entire Sunday school class (10-3 girl-to-guy ratio that day), most people voted Team Charlie.

Well the results are in. In a hard-fought battle between the X and Y chromosomes, X mounted a valiant comeback and knocked off Y with a beautifully executed crane kick. If you didn’t pay attention in high school biology and haven’t seen one of the greatest Ralph Macchio films of all-time, then ask a friend to explain the difference between XX and XY and then go watch Daniel-San stick it to Cobra Kai.  

Sweep the leg? Susan thinks not.

For those of you in the know (or too lazy to check Wikipedia), XX = BABY GIRL. So in the interest of full disclosure, I should say we’ve known we’re having a girl for over a week now. We cheated and went early to get an ultrasound because we couldn’t wait any longer.

If there’s one thing I’ve learned – and if I’ve learned only one thing at this point, I’m in trouble – it’s that when your pregnant wife says she wants something, you damn well better do it (with gusto). Refill that bowl of Fritos? Sure thing. Take a walk with you at 5 a.m.? Absolutely. Go 10 days early to get an ultrasound because you don’t want to wait all the way until October 25? Let’s go!

Like the paperclip, I am here to help. Whether you want me to or not.

So around two Thursdays ago, MJ found a place in Durham called Prenatal Peek that offers gender ultrasounds and she booked an appointment. We went last Monday, and I couldn’t be happier that we went. We got to see the baby for about 15 minutes while listening to some rockin’ tunes by Enya. About two minutes in, the lady working the wand showed us three seemingly random dots and said that those were “lady parts” and that we were having a little girl (her words, not mine). I don’t claim to be an expert on female anatomy, but I know that the technical term is not “lady parts.” I have read the word “uterus” enough over the past five months that I don’t giggle anymore. Secondly, I’m glad she pointed out the three dots for what they were because I would have thought they were Skittles.

Not quite how I remember it from health class.

So the Charlie/Susan question has finally been answered. Maybe we will have a Charlie one day, but I had a feeling all along this one was going to be Susan. We confirmed everything today at the “official” gender ultrasound. At this point, we’ve seen Susan three times, heard her heart beat five times and we still can’t get enough.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Wife: Aquamoms, Gender Ultrasound and Feeling the Baby Move!

Things could hardly be better.  For the last two weeks, I have truly felt like a new person.  Chris wasn’t lying when he said the change seemed to occur overnight.  That is how it felt for me.  I have energy again, I am more productive at work, and some nights, I am able to stay awake until 10! It is a brand new day!
Truer words were never spoken!
I had so much fun too these last few weeks.  Aquamoms is great!  There are about four or five other expectant moms in my class, all at different stages in their pregnancy.  If pregnancy was a race, I would be in last place.  Second to last place is another mom who is 19 weeks.  First place is the mom who is 36 weeks!  The class is really fun.  We start off by warming up, jogging in place, high knees, etc.  Then we do a lot of lap activities.  Like shuffling down the lane and then doing 7 frog jumps.  We look so awesome.  The pool area is pretty busy at that time with swim team going on and swim lessons on the other section.  And we always do chariot races.  That is where two moms link up with noodles and one mom pulls the other down one end and then the other mom pulls that mom back.  It is so great to talk to these ladies and hear them say the same things I am thinking.  Such as, “I hate looking at myself when I get out of the shower” or “I wish I craved apples and oranges instead of Taco Bell and Cheetos.”  The class lasts through mid-December.  After that, I am thinking of switching to pre-natal yoga for the remainder of the pregnancy.
My swimsuit is a tasteful tankini that tends to fly up when we do frog jumps.
And sometimes I am afraid I am mooning the kids taking swim lessons
because my bottoms slide down.  But its all fun!
I have energy to cook, clean and work in the yard.  The last couple of Wednesdays we worked in the yard together.  While Chris mowed, I pulled weeds, emptied my pots of their summer flowers and planted pansies.   I also stained the mailbox (after Chris powerwashed it).  I have also gotten my craft on.  I was inspired by my friend Jennifer.  The first weekend in October, she blogged about fall crafts and fall recipes, and it made me want to get crafty too.  So I decided to do fall centerpieces for our kitchen table and dining room table.  I think they look pretty good and will carry us through to my favorite season – CHRISTMAS!!!  
Our beautiful fall inspired centerpiece.  I found the idea on Pinterest.  Which I finally understand and love!
Last weekend, my in-laws came, along with my grandparent in-laws.  It was the first time Mema and Dadaddy (Chris’ grandparents) have been to visit, and we were so excited.  So we cleaned the house and got everything ready.  They could definitely tell I was showing.  We ate lunch in downtown Hillsborough and then showed them around Duke and my office.  That night, we ate my homemade chili (my Daddy’s secret recipe) and played Apples to Apples.  It was a great visit. 
I have another appointment this Friday.  It is just my monthly check up.  But in two weeks, on October 25, 2011, I go in for the gender ultrasound!  I will be exactly 18 weeks.  We are so ready to find out if the baby is Charlie or Susan.  We want to call the baby by its name and start buying clothes and other fun baby items.  The wait is truly torturing us.  I am just ready to know, so we can quit wondering.  It used to be about 75% in favor of Charlie and 25% in favor of Susan, but that has changed.  Now, it is just my mom, dad and in-laws who are on Team Charlie.  Team Susan has taken the lead with Papa (my grandfather), Chris, my best friend Kristi, Philip, Aunt Sally and ME!  I wouldn’t say either way for a long time, because I really wasn’t sure.  But all of my dreams have been about a little girl.  And based on the things I am craving, it seems like this baby is a girl after my own heart.  (We are currently craving carbs – Cheetos, chips and dip, rice, etc.)  If I was craving bananas, peanut butter and cottage cheese, then I would know without a doubt that this was a boy (and one after Chris’ own heart).  Don’t get me wrong, I am eating apples and carrots, but it’s not what we crave!  But now that I think it’s a girl, it probably means that it is definitely Charlie.  Either way, we are just ready to know.  I honestly don’t care if it is a boy or a girl, I just can’t wait to find out! 
One of the things that I get to start looking forward to now is fetal movement.  Women can begin experiencing “quickening” as early at 16 weeks.  This is internal movement that feels like butterflies, bubbles, etc.  Most first time moms don’t know what it is and can confuse it with gas, etc.  Well, yesterday, I am pretty sure I felt it.  I know what gas feels like and this did not feel that way.  I felt it on the way to work on the left side, and then when I got to work, I felt the same little tingles on the right side.  It will be about another four or five weeks before we can feel it with our hands.  Chris kept trying to feel last night, but it is all on the inside right now.  I would feel bad that I get to experience it so much sooner than he does, but I am the one who is carrying it and suffering some of the more unpleasant side effects.  So I think it’s only fair that I get to experience some of the amazing joys first.
What does everyone else think the baby is? Chris thinks we should take bets.  I won’t take your money but I am curious as to what you all think!

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Husband: I have my wife back

After a grueling last three months, I finally have my wife back.

Over the first 13 weeks of pregnancy, she dealt with being so tired she couldn’t get off the couch, so bloated she spent days at a time in pajama pants and so emotionally volatile that we had nine different tissue stations in the house.

But that’s all over now. The period of morning sickness, lack of energy and hormonal mood swings is officially behind her. She’s moved on into the magical land of rainbows and unicorns that is the second trimester. It’s supposed to be “the best part of pregnancy” because the hormonal gang war that was going on inside her body has officially called a truce. 

It was a lot like the Jets and the Sharks, but with far less dancing and snapping.
She has energy again, and she finally broke off her affair with the couch (they were getting pretty close). It’s almost like she’s back to normal, besides the ever-growing bump in her belly that now looks like she ate a volleyball. She’s earned a break. I saw what she went through, and just watching her trudge along (bravely, with minimal complaints) made ME miserable. And that’s only from what I saw. She probably felt far worse than she let on.

There’s a lot to be said for how strong a woman has to be to go through pregnancy. As her husband, I can make things a bit easier by taking on the bulk of the house chores, giving her back rubs, etc., but I’m still not the one peeing every seven minutes or crying every time I see “Adopt a Dog Today” billboards around town.

A face only a pregnant woman could love.

So for you readers who have yet to experience the joys of pregnancy, just know that the first trimester, for lack of a more descriptive term, BLOWS. Moms-to-be won’t feel like themselves and dads-to-be may wonder if their wives will ever return to normal. Those first three months can be frustrating for both parties, but it does get better. It’s like when Frodo had to travel through Mordor, except instead of babysitting Gollum, she's carrying a baby (they look similar at this point in the gestation).

The turnaround has been pretty sudden from how crappy my wife was feeling before to how great she’s feeling now. She got up at 5 a.m. today to work out at the gym and then came back like she had just returned from a Red Bull taste-testing seminar energized with a list of things that we have to do this week. Before last week, cleaning out the cars, working in the yard and tidying up the house were not even on her radar. NOW, she wants to catch up on all the household projects she’s missed out on over the past few months. So starting today when we get home from work, we’re embarking on a week-long cleaning binge. Yay for the second trimester?

Monday, September 12, 2011

Wife: Feeling Better!

Well, I know it has been a few days since we last blogged, and I apologize for that.  It is my fault.  Chris has been doing a great job keeping up with the blog while I have been lying around.  I meant to blog last week, but apparently last week, the placenta was finishing up and I had a final wave of nausea and terribleness.  But I have wonderful news.  I think I have written my last blog post about feeling like crap!

Everyone keeps talking about how magical I would feel once the second trimester hit.  And while I still have two more weeks until my second trimester, I am definitely feeling better this week.  Some women describe the second trimester as a “superwoman” type feeling.  I don’t quite feel like Superwoman yet but, I am definitely closer.

Not quite ready to leap tall buildings, but I am able to stay awake past the neighborhood kids!
For example, I have been able to stay up until 9:30 and 10:00 at night.  After going to bed by 8:30 for the last 8 weeks, this is pretty exciting stuff.   Also, my energy level has picked up.  I finally had enough energy today to go work out after work.  It felt amazing.  I have really missed sweating and be-bopping to my iPod.  And tomorrow, I start an expectant moms class called Aquamoms!  Its water aerobics for pregnant ladies!  It’s on Tuesday nights at my gym.  I am excited not only to work out but also to meet other moms-to-be.   I have my maternity swimsuit (which I will grow into) and my aqua shoes.  So I am all set. 

Instead of old ladies, picture pregnant ladies.  The coordination level is really about the same.
I am also starting to show a little.  I have this little bump.  I can see it in some of my clothes and not others.  I have had to switch to maternity jeans.  They are super comfortable.  I was wearing my pants unbuttoned with a Be Band (a special band that hides that fact that your pants are unbuttoned), but once my little belly kind of popped out, the maternity jeans were all that felt good.  My mom took me shopping for a few items to help get me through September.  Since I will mostly be big during the fall and winter, we didn’t want to spend a ton of money of summer stuff.  But we found a few things on clearance at Target and I have enough outfits, about six, to wear between now and when it gets cool. 

At my last doctor’s appointment, my doctor gave me a list of things that I could do.  First, she told me I could drink Diet coke in moderation, which she suggested was 1-2 cans a day.  That sounded like the opposite of moderation to me, so I usually drink one about every other day.  But it’s funny, Diet Coke in a can used to be my favorite way to drink it.  Now, my favorite way is to pour it from the can into a cup.  Drinking it from a can tastes funny.  Also, pouring it from a two liter tastes funny.  And fountain Diet Coke just tastes alien.  But I have definitely enjoyed it.  I am also allowed to have sparkling water.  I mostly try not to drink too much carbonation, but the option is nice to have.

The only other pesky pregnancy symptom that lasts throughout but that I have managed to keep at bay is….constipation.  I know it’s an awkward thing to discuss, but in case there is anyone who might be pregnant or thinking about it out there, I will let you know how I conquered this terribleness.  After a couple of miserable days, I had to stay home from work because it was so bad.  So Chris, my amazing husband, went to the grocery store and got Benefiber, Fiber One 80 Cereal, prune juice and apple juice.  When he finished checking out, the check-out lady said, “Good Luck.”  Thankfully, the Fiber One 80 cereal did the trick (with a little prune juice).  Since that terrible day, I have been eating two bowls of Fiber One 80 cereal every day, once in the morning and once in the afternoon and I have not had a problem since then!

Cannot recommend this stuff enough - it is delicious and helps keep that pesky problem away!
 My next appointment is this Thursday.  We should be able to hear the baby’s heartbeat on the Doppler.  And we will get all the results from my blood work.  But for now, the timer just went off and I am about to enjoy some yummy Tater-Tot Casserole!!!