Maternity Photos!

So every now and then I do this thing where I post something totally self-serving and entirely un-humble (as if that wasn't already the entire reason behind me blogging in general), and — spoiler alert — this is gonna be one of those times.

This past weekend, I had my maternity photoshoot with Taylor & Ben, and I could not be more thrilled with how the pictures turned out! You guys know that I talk a big game about self-love and body confidence, and honestly it's been easier than ever to legitimately love my body while it's been baking this tiny human. Pregnancy absolutely changes your perception of your body, and while the physical symptoms of this pregnancy haven't been easy for me, the mental and emotional changes I've gone through with regard to my feelings about my body have been very positive.

All that being said, I was still a little bit nervous that as a plus size mama-to-be, I wouldn't be able to achieve the "look" that I was going for with my maternity photos. I didn't want all this body-positive energy to be suddenly snuffed out by feeling bad about myself in photo-form, after all! Well, turns out neither my weight nor the 100% humidity destroying the hair I had carefully curled at 6 AM that morning could stop this photo magic from happening!

  

 

 

I remain eternally grateful to have such talented photographers in the family, not to mention the devoted willingness of a husband who absolutely hates having his picture taken, haha.

I've got my next OB appointment tomorrow morning, so I'll be delaying this week's pregnancy update 'til Thursday so I can make a full report. 'Til then…!

Foxlet: Week 31

Here we are at week 31, and time definitely is NOT slowing down! 9 weeks to go… hopefully! At my last OB appointment they said I was measuring a week ahead, which I know could be accurate or could mean absolutely nothing. Even with all their measurements and technology, it’s still hard for doctors to accurately predict these things. I know the statistics all say that first time moms are faaaaar more likely to go past their due date than go into labor early, but I just can’t help my FTM paranoia and think I’m not gonna make it that far. Watch me eat these words in like 9 weeks when I’m totally overdue and absolutely miserable though, lol.

Every day I do a little bit more nesting — washing sheets or blankets, hanging stuff on walls, putting clothes on hangers. I think I just love spending time in her room, haha. Even though I know she won’t even be using the nursery for a while after we bring her home, it just feels nice to be down there. Surrounded by all “her” stuff, hehe.

Foxlet’s Size: At 31 weeks, Baby Foxlet is around 3 1/3 pounds and as big as a coconut, an American football, or one of those giant tubs of Nutella (mmmm… Nutella…)

Weight: I’ve gained more pound this week, making me almost back up to my initial weight! Huzzah!

Symptoms: Eh, you know, more of the same whining from me. Pregnancy hurts, man! Heartburn still hits me hard every night, and my SPD (symphysis pubis dysfunction — basically lots o’ vag pain) has been pretty bad lately. I wear a pregnancy support belt at home (or tape up my belly with KT Tape) most days.

I’ve also still got this lingering dry cough (I suspect it may be somehow related to my heartburn, as I don’t feel sick otherwise!) and the latest new symptom is this super sharp, stabby pain that I get occasionally right over my rib, under my right boob. It feels like my rib is literally stabbing me — maybe Baby Foxlet has gotten so big she’s pushing part of my body into my rib bone or something? It usually flares up if I’m bending/leaning over or reaching forward for something, and will subside if I lay back. But yeah, not fun at all and definitely something I’ll be bringing up at my doctor’s appointment next week (if not calling about sooner. It really hurts!)

Emotions: Lol, do I even need to comment on this anymore? Still a total mess like, all the time. Sean and I watched Okja on Netflix which, having heard nothing about, I thought was gonna be a feel-good family-friendly movie but actually turned out to be a commentary on the factory farming industry. By the time the credits were rolling, I was a hot sobbing mess, loudly proclaiming through my tears all about how I was never eating meat again. (It didn’t last very long as I had chicken for dinner last night… although I’m still pretty sure I won’t be able to eat pork again for quite some time.) That said, the movie was very good! Just, you know, maybe not great to watch while pregnant and also right after having pork dumplings for dinner.

Cravings/Aversions: I’m back at the stage where I can never really decide what I want to eat, although I’m hungry like, all the time. Current favorites are still all things fruit, salads (especially with poppyseed dressing), and bagels with chive cream cheese.

Sleep: My heartburn has been making sleep more and more challenging. I basically have to prop myself somewhat upright so that the acid doesn’t burn my esophagus (something I was kind of used to doing before — I dealt with acid reflux pre-pregnancy too), but doing so a lot of pressure on my tailbone and makes that hurt. Plus, if I lay in any one position for too long, then go to change positions it hurts like hell because of my SPD. Basically, it takes me a hella long time to get comfortable and fall asleep. Probably every preggo’s problem at this stage, I know, but I’m still going to complain about it! Gahaha.

That said, I continue to be incredibly grateful that I work from home and have a flexible schedule so I can always tack on a bit more sleep in the mornings if I’ve had a bad night before. I’m also already making use of the Sleep Sheep noise machine that my friend gifted me, as it really is soothing to fall asleep to the dulcet sound of waves rippling upon the shore… She may have to fight me for it once she’s sleeping in her own room, ahahaha.

Purchases: My latest purchases have all been storage related, as I needed plastic drawers and tubs to get her clothes and toys and all her other odds and ends organized. I’m pretty happy with the system I have in place, and am planning on posting a full nursery “tour” once we really get everything finalized and in place.

Looking forward to… my registry completion discount activating at the end of this week so I can finally pick up the last remaining things that we need to prepare for this little one! It’s not a lot of “fun” stuff, mainly things like a changing pad, baby gate (or, more accurately, doggy gate), diaper stuff, mattress covers, and mommy necessities like boob pads and stuff. Super sexy.

NOT looking forward to… Getting my TDAP shot, probably at my appointment next week. I totally believe in its necessity to protect Foxlet from whooping cough (among other things), but the last time I got one (when my niece Kira was born), my arm hurt for like 3 days. Oh, the sacrifices we make for our children! 😉

Foxlet: Weeks 29 + 30

So, you’ve heard about my baby shower, but I forgot to mention my other good news from last week: I passed my glucose tolerance test! Huzzah! No gestational diabetes for this gal!

I’m definitely feeling veeeeeery pregnant these days. It’s not super comfortable, I’ll admit: I’m always either too hot or too cold, I’ve got my waddle on, and back pain is a pretty consistent part of life right now. Guess that’s the price we pay for the belly!

29 weeks on the left, 30 on the right!
Foxlet’s Size: At 30 weeks, Baby Foxlet is around 3 pounds and as long as a zucchini or bag of chips!

Weight: Continuing to hold steady with no new gains for the past couple of weeks. Technically still clocking in 2 pounds under my pre-pregnancy weight, although as I’ve mentioned before, I’m not sure how accurate that “initial” weight really was since I was so bloated at the beginning of my pregnancy. So I might have actually gained a few pounds? Can’t be sure.

I’ve had a few flickers of anxiety about not gaining any weight, but my OB’s office is definitely not concerned at all (after all, I started with lots of extra fluff for her to survive on!), so I’m trying not to fixate on it. And after all, gaining a ton of weight during pregnancy was one of my pre-pregnancy fears (I always figured I’d be the type who gains like 100 pounds, lol), so I guess I really shouldn’t be complaining!

Symptoms: Back pain, continued heartburn (especially at night), exhaustion, and I’ve had this annoying persistent cough in the back of my throat for about a week now. Looks like that mythical “feeling good” window people told me about never really opened for me, lol.

Emotions: The emotions are still there, for sure, and I cry minimum once per day over a variety of things. Anything can trigger me these days — anything. They might be upset tears over fearing that I’m going to be a terrible mom, or happy tears how Sean kisses my belly before he leaves for work, or ridiculous tears over accidentally overcooking the potatoes for potato salad. You’re welcome, everyone who knows me!

Cravings/Aversions: Nothing super specific on either end. I’ve been eating a lot more lately, and getting hungry at night. Still liking raw veggies and fruit, and sweet stuff. Reeeeeeally missing salmon sushi, man.

Sleep: Ughhhhhh. Terrible. My back pain has been making it really hard to get comfortable at night.

Purchases: Thanks to the shower, we really have all the essentials and then some at this point, so aside from picking up a few of the less cute and glamorous things that I’ll be needing (breast pads, diaper inserts, nipple cream, oh my!), we are in really good shape. I’ve also received even more hand-me-downs from my wonderful friend Breanne, which means that Baby Foxlet is sure to be the most fashionable baby ever.

Looking forward to… CM Week, our annual Community Manager work conference! This year’s is taking place during the first week of August.

NOT looking forward to… traveling to San Francisco for CM Week. I know, that sounds super contradictory, but it’s just that while I’m excited for so many things: seeing my coworkers that I only see once a year, getting to get reenergized and reinvigorated for work, and all of that… the actual thought of traveling across the country at 34 weeks is giving me a lot of anxiety.

I know it’s totally safe for the baby, and my doctor says you can fly until 36 or 37 weeks, but I still can’t help this irrational fear that I’m going to go into premature labor and have this baby in California, lol. I know, I know, 34 weeks would be SUPER early, and I haven’t shown any risk factors or issues this pregnancy (in fact, it’s been quite textbook in general.) And first-time moms are statistically more likely to go overdue than give birth before their due date. But I still can’t help being anxious about it. After all, if anyone was going to have some kind of crazy thing happen during the home stretch of her pregnancy, wouldn’t it be me? The Blizzard Wedding Girl?

I do have a checkup the week before I’ll be flying out and intend on asking my OB to be very thorough to make sure everything really looks A-OK, which will hopefully help alleviate my fears. In the meantime, those of you who have traveled late in your pregnancies — got any tips for me on making the flight over to the West Coast as un-terrible as possible?

A Very Foxy Baby Shower

Howdy, everyone! Hope you all had an excellent 4th of July holiday! I, myself, admit that the weird work week (holiday on a Tuesday!) did throw me for a bit of a loop, so I’m just now feeling like I’m getting back into the swing of things, work-wise. Partly at fault is probably the fact that I’m still riding high on the wave from my baby shower last weekend!

My wonderful sister and sister-in-law threw the most beautiful shower for Baby Foxlet!

There was tons of love, pink, sparkles, and mom-osas (well, mock ones for me!). It was perfect! They even got my brother to brave all the estrogen in the room and take beautiful photos of the entire day. I mean, just peep these deets!

I’m certainly feeling very blessed and very loved, and things are also feeling very real now that we have so much “stuff” for this little nugget, hehe. I am really lucky to have such generous people in my life! <3

Once I get everything put away, organized, and finalized I’ll be doing an updated nursery post (if you care about that sort of thing.) And in the meantime, I know I missed my 29 week update, but I’ll be back on Wednesday with a full update on how things are going (if you care about that sort of thing, lol.) So, until then…!

Foxlet: Week 28

Why hello there, third trimester — officially! I am now in week 28, and Sean and I got to spend this past weekend enjoying our little family of 2.5 out on our babymoon!

We drove out to the Shenandoah Valley and spent a long weekend at a gorgeous B&B, Glen Gordon Manor. The manor and grounds were so idyllic, with sprawling fields and gorgeous greenery, plus lots of animals living on the land. There were horses, as well as chickens who were right outside our room — it made me so happy seeing them chase bugs through the grass and roam around all fancy-free.

Glen Gordon is only about a 1.5 hour drive from where we live, so it was a super easy trip there and back. We wanted to stay relatively close to home since A) I am really uncomfortable flying these days, and B) so Sean wouldn’t have to take too much PTO, as he’s saving it for when Foxlet get here (he only gets 3 days of actual paternity leave from his company — womp womp). It worked out to be the perfect, relaxing mini-vacation we needed!

Glen Gordon Manor is owned and run by Chef Dayn Smith, and we got to enjoy an incredible feast each morning at breakfast, as well as dinner on the first evening. Everything was super seasonal, hyper-local (they harvest honey from their own honeybees, grow their own herbs, and use the eggs laid by their own chickens!), and crazy delicious. The chef even took the time to make a few adjustments to my dinner (it’s a prix fixe menu) because I’m preggo.

After we got to enjoy more deliciousness for breakfast the next morning, we got a couple’s massage, and then hopped in the car and drove down Skyline Drive into Shenandoah National Park. I’m almost ashamed to admit it, considering I went to JMU for college right in the Shenandoah Valley, but I had never actually driven down Skyline Drive. Crazy, right?

I thought it was going to be rainy all weekend, but the weather ended up being amazing — the overlook views were so gorgeous!

I’m admittedly not much of a “nature” gal, but I can appreciate a great view. And hey, getting to take in the sights in between jaunts in the comfort of an air-conditioned car was juuuust fine with me.

Can you believe they’re just letting these two weirdos be parents? 😉

Foxlet’s Size: At 28 weeks, Foxlet weighs around 2 1/4 pounds and is the size of an eggplant!

Weight: Holding steady this week at around the same weight as last week.

Symptoms: Ahhh, the lovely physical ailments I’m dealing with this week include my ever-persistent and ever-pleasant heartburn and SPD (symphysis pubis dysfunction), as well as breast pain, tailbone pain, and headaches. Hurrah! But, lest it sound like I’m always complaining (which, I know, I am), there really is good stuff too. I feel her kick and move around aaaaaall the time, and am feeling bonded with this little life inside of me. I’ve got that nesting switch flipped for sure, and am certainly happy a lot. It’s just sometimes hard to focus on the good stuff amongst the bad, more painful stuff, that’s all.

Emotions: Guess who cries 2-8 times daily? This gal! Guess who is surprised by this news? Nobody! Aside from constantly having to redo my eye makeup though, my spirits have been pretty high! I’m getting really excited for all the “real” stuff we’ll get to do now that we’re in the third trimester — birth class, hospital tour, baby shower, nursery completion, and more.

Cravings/Aversions: I’ve been continuing to crave veggies, big salads, and fresh fruit — even more than usual, even. Asparagus, romaine lettuce, grapes, mango, and mandarin oranges in particular are my jam. No aversions, other than my lack-of-nighttime-appetite showing up again this week and making me super indecisive about what I want to eat.

Sleep: Sleeping at the B&B was a little bit challenging because I wasn’t armed with my arsenal of pillows that I surround myself with each night (I brought my little wedge pillow with me, but that was it.) Sleep continues to be challenging just because it takes me so long to get comfortable each night… only to finally get settled and then have to get back up because I need to go to the bathroom, or I forgot to put in my retainer, or what have you.

Purchases: Ummmm sooooooo, despite what I said about trying to be really good about not buying new stuff for myself before my baby shower, I toooooootally picked up more stuff for the nursery. I just couldn’t help it! I went into Target for some Zantac and walked out with a new comforter for the guest bed, a cloud bookshelf, and stuffed unicorn head. Hehe.

Looking forward to… my baby shower this weekend!!

NOT looking forward to… my 3-hour glucose test, which is probably well-underway as you read this. Bleh. Send good thoughts my way, and keep your fingers crossed that the phlebotomist doesn’t leave me looking like a heroin addict after all my blood draws… and also that I don’t have gestational diabetes if, y’know, at all possible.