Pregnancy Update (Weeks 32-34)

So…I’m technically not writing on the blog anymore, but these pregnancy updates are important to me. I really want to have them to look back on, you know? So today I’m just sharing how things have been regarding pregnancy the past three weeks 🙂

Maternity clothes? Yes- although I can fit into normal workout shorts (I wear them below my belly obviously!)…all shirts are maternity. However, I’ve been wearing dresses or a swim suit a lot, haha. It’s getting hot here!

Stretch marks? Nope. I heard sometimes they don’t show up until after birth? Anyone know if this is true?

Sleep: Good for the most part aside from getting up 2-3 times a night…but when I sleep, I sleep hard!

Best moment: I know you’re never truly “ready”, but I feel relieved and happy that things are pretty much done in preparation of her! Nursery is complete, clothes and all of her stuff is washed and organized, healthy freezer meals/snacks are all made, labeled, and stowed away, car seat inspection is done, hospital and diaper bag are put together. The next several weeks are devoted to “me” time and time with my husband- doing whatever the heck we want! I think this is important and I’m so glad I got shit done early so we have this extra time and aren’t scrambling for last minute things.

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32 weeks

Miss anything? Sleeping without waking up to pee a bunch of times and literally rolling out of bed, haha. It’s no biggie, but the only thing I can think of!

Movement: Yep- some days she’s super active and others she’s more laid back…

Food cravings: My sister mentioned and she made biscuits and gravy a few weeks ago and I needed to have it! I bought the stuff to make it (healthy version of course- turkey breakfast sausage and whole wheat biscuits, haha), so I think we’ll have that Sunday night. My normal pre-pregnancy sweet tooth is kinda back. Ice cream sounded so gross to me for like the past seven months, but I’ve been wanting it lately. Although I can’t have much- just a few bites and I’m satisfied….which is still unusual for me, haha. Fruit is still SO good- I got a mini watermelon, pineapple, and cantaloupe on sale the other day and I’m excited to make a huge fruit salad this weekend. Grapes, sliced Ambrosia or Honey Crisp apples, and pears are what I had this week. Cucumbers are also good right now- like even plain, haha. 

Anything making you feel queasy or sick: Mexican food is still unappealing. The smell of strong coffee (I haven’t had any coffee at all- just a few sips of Tyler’s iced coffee every now and then).

Workouts: Just walking the dogs, free weights for arms, and stretching! I’ve been using the birthing ball to sit on during the day and when I’m stretching and it feels SO good! I’ve never had back issues and I think stretching and using the ball are helping.

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34 weeks.

Showing? Um yes 😉

Gender: Girl.

Symptoms: Contractions have eased up a bit- I did go back to Triage two weeks ago for contractions and cramping and had another NST done. I’ve been keeping stress to a minimum (not over-analyzing the future and whatnot) and it’s seemed to have helped. As I mentioned above, my back is started to hurt…and fatigue which is normal in the third trimester. My stomach is literally rock hard. Everyone says I’m “all belly”, so I don’t know if that’s it or what, but it feels so weird!!!

Belly button in or out? Out…and it’s weird! 

Wedding ring on or off? On

Emotions: UMMM, haha. All over the place.

Looking forward to: My next OB appointment! I’ll be seen weekly from here on out and next week I do the Strep B test and have a pelvic exam done. We’re also taking more pictures this weekend! I opted out of maternity photos and we’re doing our own. I couldn’t find anything I liked to wear IF we had them done (what I wanted out Etsy would’ve taken a month to get done and shipped to me- I didn’t want to risk not having time if she comes early) and I wasn’t too impressed with the photographers I looked at…I don’t know, I was just kinda like ehhh about it. It was fun to do our own a few weeks ago (32 weeks), but I need to learn how to use damn Photoshop on our computer, haha. I figured we’d do a few more this weekend at 35 weeks and then again at 38.

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32 weeks.

Hope everyone has a fabulous weekend!

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A Farewell Post & Nursery Reveal

***As many of you are probably aware, my blog was shut down last week. I had a handful of people (bloggers and personal contacts) reach out to ensure the baby and me were okay- we are! I apologize for leaving anyone hanging or worried- this was a personal choice. Living in Bliss has been an awesome outlet for me over the past couple of years. I’ve opened myself up more than I ever thought I could with writing about being newly married and starting our lives together at our first duty station (Fort Bliss- hence, where the name came from, haha), to experiencing a heartbreaking loss, TTC again, battling infertility, going through a deployment alone, trying to find myself, and discussing sensitive topics such as self esteem, self confidence, and floundering as a late teen and early adult. I can’t tell you how many times I sat writing with tears streaming down my face as I navigated through these issues and felt SO much better after I got it all out. I know- this is not a diary and I could’ve easily done the same thing without sharing it with others…but I know how it feels to deny your feelings so that you feel less alone, or weird, or lost, and if I could help one person feel a little better and give them hope, then it was worth it.

With that being said, http://www.livingnbliss.com no longer exists, but I am keeping http://www.livingnbliss.wordpress.com up and searchable. Despite the blog being down for merely a week, I had a few people ask about miscarriage/infertility stuff and I want my journey to be viewable as it may continue to help others (everything is organized under the Miscarriage/Loss tab on my homepage). I never made a dime off the blog, and while I played with the thought here and there of really devoting more time into the space and attempting to make it as a full-fledged blogger, my heart wasn’t in it in that way- I wrote just to write- nothing more. I also won’t be posting anymore. I don’t know if this will be temporary or permanent, but it’s what’s best for me right now. I’ve been toying with the idea of vlogs, but it kinda weirds me out as well, haha. We shall see 😉

My Facebook page (personal and Living in Bliss) is also deactivated indefinitely, but you can follow me on Instagram as I continue on with my pregnancy and into mommyhood- ksingleton916. It’s private so I’ll have to approve it 😉

Finally, a huge thank you to everyone that’s found and followed me since Living in Bliss was created. Though I wrote about an array of other topics, the loss and IF community will always be important to me, and I’m rooting for those that are still in the midst of the darkness. A few things I’ve learned is that you HAVE to be your own advocate. Do not sit around and wait- if you feel like something just isn’t right or are hesitant about what your doctor says- do your research and get a second, or even third, opinion. I truly don’t think I’d be 8.5 months pregnant with this beautiful miracle if I had just waited and prayed for it to be “our time”. Science doesn’t work like that. Also, don’t give up hope in the meantime. This is easy to say, but incredibly difficult to do. Even during my worst moments, I’d remind myself that there is something bigger, something unimaginable, at the end of the tunnel- and that proved to be true when we found out we were expecting the cycle before IVF started. And lastly, miracles DO happen. This goes beyond conception- it can be applied in many aspects of life 🙂

Alright- I wrote this nursery reveal post a week or so ago but hadn’t shared it yet when I decided this about the blog. I wasn’t planning on publishing it, but after some consideration, I really wanted to- I’m excited as hell about our little girl and thoroughly enjoyed rehashing everything I did (Tyler hung the stuff on the wall, lol). So that’s what I’ll be sharing in my little farewell post today!

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It may seem a bit early to be completely done with the nursery (I actually finished it during week 30-I’m now in week 34!), but there was no need to wait and let me tell ya- it feels damn good! I was kind of a crazy person for two weeks after we returned from visiting family and having our baby shower with organizing, finishing the decorating, and writing thank you cards (my husband will vouch for this, haha). However, it feels awesome to know that her room is complete and ready to go so that I can spend the next several weeks working on little craft projects, reading, relaxing, and spending quality time with my husband. While I’ve absolutely LOVED decorating our daughter’s room, I’ve spent quite a few evenings running errands, re-doing old decorations, or organizing and it’s a relief to be done 🙂

I wanted to share photos of the baby’s room not only to look back on and remember exactly what I did, but also to show that it IS possible to decorate without breaking the bank. I find it fascinating how expensive shit can be sometimes, and although sometimes it’s not worth the time or money to recreate it yourself, sometimes it is 😉 I also had some items that were special to me that I wanted to incorporate into the room which I’ll note below.

The theme of the nursery is shabby chic. I’m not into nursery themes AT ALL so I hate labeling ours, but it does that that feel.  I went back and forth on the style of room I wanted to create…I feel like this is something I’ve always struggled with as I have various tastes, haha. I love shabby chic/vintage/antique dĂ©cor, but I’d NEVER have my entire house decorated like that. It can be a bit much- cluttered, chaotic, and super grandma-ish feeling sometimes (sorry, but it’s the truth. In fact, Tyler told me that I’d definitely be able to get a job going around the country decorating nursing homes when I was searching for her crib bedding, haha). Over the past few years, I’ve tended to gravitate towards very simple, minimal home dĂ©cor designs and lighter colors. Anyways, I wasn’t sure if I wanted to go the shabby chic route or not, but I ultimately decided that I would. My goal was feminine without being too over-the-top girly, soft, and tranquil. I REALLY wanted a white or grayish color convertible crib and matching furniture, but my husband liked espresso better. It wasn’t a huge deal to me so espresso it was (…and we may always have a second child in which I can get white if I still want it, haha).

One last thing- as you’ll see, I got most of my crafting supplies or miscellaneous items from Hobby Lobby. This company is totally ass backwards and I don’t agree with their ideas and practices at all; however, that doesn’t stop me from shopping there. Hypocritical, but whatever! 🙂 Alright, here we go…Oh, and just so no one gets their panties in a wad or tries lecturing me- yes, the crib bumpers ARE in. We don’t plan on her actually sleeping in her crib until she’s a couple of months old and when the time comes, they WILL come off…and the blanket will not be used to cover her. We also hung shit above her bed, but it’s pretty high up and it’s secure. Same with the fabric garland. I know she’ll eventually start grabbing at things- the decor can be removed super easily. Just wanted to throw that out there 🙂

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View walking in

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S may stand for our last name 😉 Anyways, I painted the letter S an off white (although it looks whiter in these pics) and “believe” gold. My OBGYN at Fort Bliss, who was there with us during our first pregnancy and loss and throughout our TTC journey, always told me to believe. She herself went through IVF and said she had to keep reminding herself of that during the darkest times. I stumbled across the word at Hobby Lobby one day and instantly grabbed it- I knew I wanted to incorporate it in her bedroom somehow. I found the gold mirror and picture at Hobby Lobby on clearance for $8 each 🙂

 

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As you can see, I changed up the flower a bit (Hobby Lobby clearance).

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Tyler LOVED hanging this little gallery, haha 😉

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We opted not to get the changer thing that can go on top of this dresser- it just seemed pointless and like a waste of money. I’ve seen fabric garlands on Pinterest and really wanted to make one, but I had the decor above her crib already done. It turned out perfect for her room!

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The mirror was $8 from Marshalls and initially silver. I painted it to match the gold above her bed (I’m not a huge fan of gold, but this is a bit softer).

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S was found at Kirklands on clearance for $4 before we moved. I painted the picture frame to match and found the burlap box at HB for $4. I bought stickers and little flowers to put on it- I used VERY little hot glue so that I can redo them someday if need be or use them for something else.

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Before any changes were made

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Soft gold all over and painted the flowers

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Finished 🙂

 

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Diapers will be in the rectangular storage unit that’s under the warmer for easy access. The doily that the warmer is on was made by my grandma (my mom’s mom). She loved to sew and crochet and I really wanted to use some in the baby’s room . It worked perfectly to cover up the plastic shelf thing! All diapering essentials are in the top middle drawer in an organizer.

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The bedding is Cotton Tales Tea Party. I LOVE the matching mobile 🙂 The fitted sheet it came with is too busy for me, but I knew we’d need extra so I bought two sets of soft pink to alternate through.

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The bedding came with 9 pieces, including the valence. I can’t wait hold her in my arms in the glider that my best friend gifted us!

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My mom bought us the “Twinkle, twinkle little star, do you know how loved you are?” that she used at our baby shower 🙂

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Picture frame I redid. I put the poem that my dad gave to me at our shower in it- it fit perfect and meant so much to me. My mom found the spoon while I was visiting home when going through my box of old stuff. I gave it to her when I was little but have no recollection of it, haha. The little plant thing was on clearance at Marshalls- I painted the pot and added the pearls and pink crystal things to it. The gem lamp was bought for me by my husband when he was deployed- it’s beautiful! The doily was made by my late maternal grandmother.

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My mom got me the garden snow globe a few years ago. She also got me the flower décor in the back- I painted the pot and added the pearls to the bottom. The bunny was purchased on sale at HB (looked shabby chic- no importance, haha). Doily made by my grandma.

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Closer look.

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Pano view.

The bedroom is pretty damn small so options were limited. Also, we will be moving in September/October so I obviously wasn’t going to paint the room or add too much to the walls. However, I think it turned out well given our limited space and time in this house. We bought a mosquito net (or crib netting, whatever the hell it’s called) in an off white that I wanted to put in the corner so it hung above her crib, but the room is just too freaking small. It had lace on the top part and was adorable and was a great deal on Amazon, so we decided to save it so that it can hopefully be used in the future at our next place. At first I thought there might be too much in the room, but it’s not cluttered looking- I HATE clutter! I only like a few things on dressers, countertops, whatever, otherwise, it just feels overwhelming to me. On the other hand, my husband thinks that if there is space somewhere, something must go there to fill it, haha. We’ve luckily found a happy medium over the years 😉

We asked for books in lieu of a card at the baby shower, and I’m SO grateful that people were more than happy to oblige. I’ll take photos once her closet is a bit more organized (still waiting to receive the rest of the stuff we bought), but she has two shelving units filled with books! I had to organize those according to size, of course 😉

So that’s it! I really did have so much fun shopping for stuff, re-doing things, and incorporating items from my mom and grandma- I can’t believe how well they went with the colors!  And aside from asking my husband to hang the shit on the walls, I did everything myself, although I’d text my mom often asking which she liked better 😉 Thank you, mama- I love you! That’s one of the pitfalls of living so far away from family…not being able to do these special things together. I know I probably did this more for myself as she won’t remember it, but it brought me so much joy and peace…It IS possible to create a cute space for your little one without going balls out or breaking the bank! There were a few times I almost said screw it because I’d be looking on Pinterest or Facebook and see other nursery’s that were absolutely gorgeous and the comparison trap started making it’s way into my mind…but honestly, who gives a F? Almost everything in the room has a special meaning and I know that it’s redonkulous to go absolutely nucking futs for a bedroom. The most important thing is having a healthy baby- and she won’t care if it looks like it’s out of a magazine or not 😉

Thank you again for reading! I’ll still be reading other’s blogs, so I’m not disappearing for good. Hope everyone is well!

Did you decorate your baby’s room? Do a theme?

Did you have a decorating budget?

Has anyone done a vlog or used Periscope before (I like the idea of this as it deletes after 24 hours!).

 

Visitors After the Baby’s Arrival

I know visitor’s after the baby’s arrival can be a big issue for couples (I even googled it and there are a ton of discussion boards with venting wives, lol) and I’ve been asked a handful of times my stance on it, so that’s what I want to discuss today. I think it’s super important for spouses to be on the same page regarding and it’s something that should be discussed before the baby is born. The last thing you need is arguing with each other during an already stressful (yet amazing!) time if it could’ve been prevented.

Tyler and I are in a different situation that many couples because we live across the country from literally all family and close friends. That being said, we won’t have the issues with people just dropping by unannounced or last minute which is good in a way because that would probably drive me freaking crazy, haha. I’ve written about it several times, but if you don’t already know, I have anxiety issues which have gotten much better, but they’re still there. I liked things planned ahead as much as possible 😉 Anyways, this also means that family or friends will be flying in to see us which is awesome but can be overwhelming as well. That being said, I think it’s best that family comes down in cycles and that their visits do not overlap with each other.

Tyler and I downsized when we moved to Arizona. Though we have three bedrooms, they’re SMALL. We have our master, baby girl has her nursery and we have the spare room as the computer/treadmill/movie/army room. We physically were not able to have an extra bedroom for guests, but we honestly didn’t have many visitors in El Paso anyways and this time we’re only here for 8-9 months (will be moving again in September/October). That being said, we can’t have anyone staying with us when they visit. My brother and sister will be staying here- they’re young and I’d never expect them to pay for a hotel. Plus, they could care less if they slept on the couch or air mattress for a week! I can also tell them when they’re annoying the crap out of me and don’t feel like I have to entertain them or that they’ll be judging me on my new mothering, haha 😉 Just kidding…kinda 🙂

They’ll be here from June 25-July 3 which I think is great timing. If the baby comes on time, that gives us a month to get used to being with her by ourselves, learn her cues, etc. And I’m pretty sure that I won’t want to be taking her out the first few weeks. I’m hoping not to be an overprotective parent, but I really don’t see the point of taking a newborn out unless necessary. There isn’t much to do or good places to eat in our town anyways, haha.

My dad and his girlfriend plan on coming down in late July or August. That’ll be nice because by then I should hopefully be catching on to things a bit. My mom is kinda on stand-by- she said she’ll be here whenever I want her to. We don’t think that Tyler will get the normal 10 day leave that you get in the military after your spouse has a baby. This is because Tyler is not in the “regular” army right now (I forgot the technical term)- he’s in Captain Career Course which is a six month school that can’t be interrupted. There may be some way to get around this, but this would prolong our stay here a bit, his graduation date, and I really want him to do what’s best for him. He won’t be deployed or in the field and I know he’ll be helping out as much as possible when he’s home (CCC means normal hours!). I’m thinking I want my mom to come right before or after my brother and sister…but it really all depends on when she makes her debut. If she comes early, then definitely before! Ideally, I’d like her to come about two weeks after she’s born (she’ll need to give work a heads up!), but we shall see.

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I’m eager and nervous to see how the dogs, especially Wrigley, react to the baby…

We’re super excited to have visitor’s this summer and for everyone to meet our new addition! I just want everyone to be happy and feel like they had sufficient time with us and her and not have to worry about “sharing”, lol, if that makes sense. We should find out where we PCS to next in June or July, and if possible, we want to visit home after that move. It all depends on where we are located. If it does work out, I’m hoping we will have her baptized then. My dad’s side of the family is Catholic, and my brother, sister, and I were all baptized and had our Communions and Confirmations. Though I’m not an active church-goer, it’s important to me that she’s baptized, and my best friend’s father is a Deacon at the Catholic church we used to go to. I think it’d be so awesome to have him do it! I’m getting ahead of myself though, haha.

We also bought a camera so that family or friends will be able to see the baby when we turn it on and she’s within range. At first I was super hesitant about this. I thought Tyler wanted it running all the time so family would be able to see her whenever they wanted. That definitely was not okay by me. I mean, what if I was breastfeeding her and my boobs were poppin out? Or she was having a crying fit and I couldn’t get her to stop? Or….I could list a ton of other scenarios that just wouldn’t be cool. He assured me that there will be certain times and we’ll let family know when we’ll be turning it on. I thought this was pretty much the same thing as Skype or FaceTime, but I just let him buy it and set it up if it’ll make him happy 😉

I’ll be sharing the nursery post next week so check back! Hope everyone has a great weekend.

What are your thoughts on visitor’s after having the baby?

Did you and your spouse have a plan? Was it difficult to come to an agreement?

Have any stories you want to share or advice for me?

 

Pregnancy Update (Weeks 30 & 31)

I’m not sure why, but the past two weeks crept by pretty damn slow. I guess that’s good for a change seeing as the past two months have flown by 🙂 Not much is happening on our end. I’ve started making freezer meals/snacks for when baby girl arrives and noting healthy, easy meals that we can throw together. We’re good about eating healthy (well I am, haha), but some are a bit time consuming and I’m slow as hell in the kitchen, so I thought prepping a little beforehand would be beneficial 🙂

I’m measuring a bit small, so we have a growth scan set for Tuesday, April 5. I’m PRAYING everything looks great. It’s  worrisome, but I just have to believe all will be good- she could simply just be little and the doc said I’m tiny myself (although I’m 5’7″ so I’m not petite) and have remained within the guidelines of healthy weight gain…I got sucked in and googled measuring small at 31 weeks and kinda freaked out… Anyways, I’m trying not to think about that and just be positive, so let’s move on!

Maternity clothes? Yep- I don’t think this should even be a question anymore!

Stretch marks? Nope

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30 weeks.

Sleep: Sleep is good when I’m asleep aside from the weird dreams that I still have. I’ve dreamed about the two homes I lived in as a child and teen more times than I can count, and SO many people that I haven’t seen or spoken to in years have made their way into my dreams and it’s pretty fucking odd. I’m getting up 2-3 times to pee but can generally fall right back asleep. Sleeping on solely my sides is a bit aggravating after doing it so long as well. I tend to sleep more on my back and sometimes I wake up like that but quickly move to my side.  

Best moment: Driving up to the Phoenix area for a Cubs spring training game! The drive is a little less than three hours, so we headed up there early afternoon (it happened to fall on the day I turned 30 weeks), had an early dinner then went to the game.

Finishing her nursery! I know it’s a bit early, but since I’m not working or bedridden due to morning sickness all day, I have lots of time on my hands 🙂 I absolutely love it and find myself standing or sitting in there throughout the day smiling in disbelief that this is really happening. I’ll be sharing pictures in an upcoming post.

We also received the completion discount on our Amazon registry so we ordered the rest of the stuff! Everything totaled up to being over $750 (crazy…), but after a few gift cards we received and using our 15% off, it was around $400 or so (the convertible car seat and Ergo Baby 360 took up a good portion of that cost. If anyone is interested, we went with a Diono car seat after researching it for a LONG time, but our stroller travel system is Britax). Finishing the Babies R Us registry is next (waiting for the completion coupon) and thankfully, there isn’t TOO much left on that one, and then we’re done! Well, for now, haha.

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Cubs Spring training game! 30 weeks.

 

Miss anything? Aside from family, nope.

Movement: Yes- although honestly, I don’t like this point. I feel like she goes through phases of being active and sometimes I go hours without feeling her. It’s sometimes nerve-wracking, especially because I’m paranoid…I make sure to count her movements though. 

Food cravings: Carbs- brown rice, mac and cheese, and bagels. Fruit- especially strawberries and pineapple! Smoothies are still really good as well, especially because I need the extra calories but sometimes things don’t sound so great.

Anything making you feel queasy or sick: Nausea has made it’s way back. It’s not constant like it was early on in the pregnancy, but I’ve been feeling sick every day at some point- sometimes it’s all morning or afternoon long, and other times it’s only for an hour or two. However, there isn’t much that sounds absolutely disgusting-woo!

Workouts: Lightweights, some core exercises, and short walks with Wrigley. My OB said short walks are fine, just nothing that puts me too long on my feet or that’s strenuous.

Showing? Yep. This shouldn’t be a question anymore either!

Gender: Girl 🙂 Nor should this, haha.

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Symptoms: Still having Braxton-Hicks quite often and I had a second fetal fibronectin test at 30w5d which came back negative, so the doctor just said continue drinking plenty of water (I’ve always drank a shit ton of water and that’s pretty much all I drink- no issues there) and if I feel more than 6 an hour to come in.

I’m pretty fatigued in the afternoon, but I heard and read that this is normal at this stage.

Belly button in or out? Not completely out, but almost there!

Wedding ring on or off? On

Emotions: I’ve had a handful of hard moments the past couple of weeks. I

Looking forward to: Starting birthing classes! The first one is April 4 and I’m hoping I’ll learn some things and they’ll help us prepare a bit. The ultrasound on the 5th, though I’m nervous as well.

What’s Going on with Baby: Baby should be measuring over 16 inches long and weighing over 3 pounds and will be experiencing a growth spurt soon. She can turn her head and her body is beginning to fill out as she is putting on more fat. She is sleeping for longer stretches of time and her five senses can work now (although she won’t be able to smell until she is out of the womb).