Saturday, October 24, 2015

Week 21: Maui, Maternity Shopping, & More Musings


I just booked a trip to Maui for next month! We don't anticipate that we'll have the opportunity to travel much after baby Jemily arrives so we decided to squeeze in one more vacation before his arrival. While I would have loved to travel to Europe, ultimately I wasn't sure if I could handle such a long flight. Plus, I wanted to be in an English speaking country just in case I end up needing any kind of medical attention.

We haven't been to Hawaii since our honeymoon in 2008 so we're excited to go back. We've both been working hard since we started new jobs a few months ago so we could both use a break to relax and recharge. If you have any Maui tips, please share!

Maternity Shopping

I gained 5 pounds this past month! Given that I didn't gain much weight in the first half of my pregnancy, my doctor's not concerned about my overall weight gain. Still, this new weight gain means that I've had to finally succumb to maternity clothes. Trying to fit into some of my regular clothes has been a total joke! Sadly, it's really hard to shop for maternity clothes. The selection in-stores is scarce and I'm never quite sure what your size should be when I order online. Am I really going to still fit into a size small?

I found these Gap jeans really snug when I tried them on last month so I knew there was no way they could last me throughout my pregnancy. Clearly I'm not the only one who thought that! The reviews seem to reflect similarly. I just got these Old Navy jeans, which are definitely more comfy. They were 40% off so while I don't have high hopes for them, I'm just hoping they're not terrible!

In the meantime, I think I'm just going to have to order some stuff online and hope for the best. I really love the look of the maternity dress that Kate Middleton wore:

But since I'm having a winter baby, I know I need to find more warm weather maternity clothes! But so far, everything seems to be sleeveless. I guess they assume pregnant women are generally really warm, regardless of time of the year? I need at least one nice dress, since we're attending a wedding, having a shower, and a photoshoot in the next few months. It'd be nice to not look like a ridiculous encased sausage for those occasions!

More Musings
  • I briefly thought about placenta pills but after the reaction I got from asking around about this, I decided that this was a no-go. There just isn't any evidence to show that there's really any benefit to this and the very unscientific, anecdotal evidence I've heard thus far just isn't convincing enough for me. Plus, this isn't a regulated process so there's no way to know what is getting added to the pills - what if it's not even my placenta?! Eek.
  • I haven't been keeping up with my reading - hopefully I'll get back on track next week.
  • I booked a photographer for a maternity shoot! I have a few months to decide but I need to figure out a location.

Saturday, October 17, 2015

Week 20: House Projects & Purchases for Jemily

House Projects

Now that we're halfway through the pregnancy, we're starting to get serious about all the work we want to do on the house, since we won't have the time or money to do them when Jemily is here. We're updating the guest bathroom to be more kid-friendly and adding a new fireplace, fan, and overhead lighting to our living room so that it'll be a cozier, warmer space. We also need to figure out a way to add more storage to our kitchen, since we don't currently have anywhere to put bottles or any other kind of baby stuff. It might not seem like a lot but the costs add up quickly and it takes awhile to get it all done. Hopefully, we'll have everything done by the end of the year!

Purchases for Jemily

We've started researching some of the big ticket items, as well as smaller things that we'll need for Jemily. So far, I've only purchased the following:
  • Breast pump: I guess this technically isn't a purchase since I was able to get this fully covered by insurance - go Obamacare! My insurance coverage is pretty good so I had a lot of options to choose from. I ended up choosing the Spectre S2 through Byram Healthcare since I read a lot of great reviews about this model compared to the Medela, which is probably the most common model used by moms. I was surprised by how quick and easy the process of getting one was. I got the list of covered providers through my insurance company, filled out an online form through the Byram Healthcare website, and received the pump in the mail after 10 days. Awesome!
  • Crib: Jeff had to make a trip to Ikea for bathroom stuff so I told him to pick up a crib while he was there. The Ikea Sundvik crib is one of Consumer Reports' top rated cribs and only $119! Safe and cheap seems like a win-win to me.
  • Wipes and diapers: These purchases were opportunistic. Epantry had a diaper and wipes promotion for $1.99 (they were basically free, the $1.99 was the shipping fee) while Amazon had a 50% off sale for select Huggies diapers and wipes. Part of me feels ridiculous for already buying diapers when my baby is only 20 weeks in utero but the other part of me can't pass up on the good deal. :)
  • Baby's first outfit: Jeff couldn't resist buying a cute Superman onesie!
I have some ideas for some of the other items but I want to do a bit more research. I've been basing most of my decisions for the big ticket items like strollers and car seats off the Consumer Report ratings since I think safety trumps all else but Jeff also wants the big items like the stroller and the car seat to be light and convenient to carry around too - and the combination of those two characteristics in one item don't always exist. Also, baby items can be so expensive! Am I a terrible mom for not being willing to spend the $900 on the Uppa Vista stroller that every other mom seems to buy and swear by? That just seems insane to me!

Big Ben, London, March 2011

Saturday, October 10, 2015

Week 19: It's a boy and it's moving!

It's a boy!

Even though we've suspected since week 12, we now have official confirmation that it's a boy. We would have been happy with either gender but we're excited for a baby boy! We now intermittently refer to baby Jemily as Lucas to test the name out. So far, we like it - I also like the name Luke as a nickname. Now we just have to figure out a middle name, and maybe a Chinese name.

And he's moving...sometimes...

I've been feeling a few flutters down there since last week - at first, they were pretty subtle so I couldn't tell if they were stomach growls, gas, or Jemily moving out and about. But now the movements are stronger so I know it's Jemily moving. What a weird and awesome feeling! It's like there's an alien life forming inside me. Jeff was with me when he made his first perceptible kicks so he was able to experience them with me by putting his hand over my belly - it was a truly magical experience! The movement isn't quite consistent at this stage though. After a few days of not feeling much, I poked him and got a quick punch in return! It's nice to know he has fast reflexes. ;)

More pregnant company

Jeff's cousin Michelle came to visit last weekend. We're always happy to see her but this time was especially fun because she's also pregnant and our due dates are only a month apart. Not only did we voraciously feast together, I also took her with me to prenatal yoga class. It's definitely much more motivating to go with other mommy friends. Jeff and I are also excited that baby Jemily / Lucas will have a cousin the same age!

A face that only a mother could love ;)

Sunday, October 4, 2015

Week 18: Working Out, Pregnancy Buddies, & Reading

Working out while pregnant:

Prior to getting sick in week 8, I was still doing my regular runs on the treadmill - albeit a bit more slowly than usual just to make sure I wasn't overexerting myself. After getting sick, we ended up going on vacation, and then by the time I felt better, it had been many weeks since I'd been on a treadmill and I just didn't know if it was safe for me to start up my running routine again. I've been focused a lot on walking and some Blogilates videos once in awhile. I attended my second pre-natal yoga class this week and I'm really enjoying it so far.

I wish I could work out more - I miss sweating it out with a good run! But I worry about overexerting myself - even though it's most likely okay, I don't want to take any chances with baby Jemily. Plus, with my new job there just isn't time to do more beyond daily walks and once a week yoga. Jeff and I are thinking about getting a treadmill so that we can work out in the comfort of our own home after Jemily is born.

Pregnancy buddies:

My dear friend Donna is also pregnant, so going through this experience with her has been super fun. She's also three months ahead of me, which makes it super helpful for me since she's figured out a bunch of stuff already. Pregnancy can feel overwhelming - knowing what to do, what to buy, etc. so being able to share research and information with a trusted friend really helps. Plus, it's fun to have a pre-natal yoga buddy. I can't wait for our kids to play together (and hopefully give us a break)!


I have a ton of pregnancy and parenting books on my list to get through. I didn't want to start too early in the pregnancy, lest I forget everything useful but now I feel like I'm so behind! Here's what I've read so far:
  • BabySafe in Seven Steps: This book was mostly an advertisement for Babyganics products. This book is skippable.
  • What to Expect When You're Expecting: The information in this book is all stuff that I get through my pregnancy apps so it seems a bit redundant. I was surprised that I read it cover to cover - the only thing I found noteworthy was the list of what to take to the hospital, which will change once we take the hospital tour and find out what the hospital provides (and doesn't provide). If you're short on time, this is another book I'd skip!


The one thing we have figured out is the post-partum nanny - who-hoo! :)