Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Thirty-Five - My Easiest (& Hardest) Pregnancy

Weeks along: 35
Baby size: Honeydew melon
Labor signs: So many contractions but none very painful. My doctor wants me to go in if they come consistently because due to my fast, fast labors, I don't really know what "early" labor feels like.
Other symptoms: Heartburn and my hands and feet are so swollen it hurts to walk sometimes. This is so strange to me because I haven't ever experienced swelling (I'm drinking 100 oz. of water every day and my blood pressure is great.)
Weight gain: 35 lbs. (!!!) This is how much I gained at the END with Isaiah and Maci. What-the-what??
Baby's Heartrate: 164 bpm - she's always very active at doctor's appointments.
Other news: My hospital bag is packed and loaded in the car. And this time I remembered protein bars and pepperoni sticks in case I deliver in the middle of the night like I did with Maci. I was starving after and all they had were crackers. I had no idea. When I gave birth to Isaiah around dinner time they came in with 2 turkey sandwiches, chips, and juice. So I made sure to add some snacks to my bag - I also have a friend that said she'd order us a pizza if we need it. Love her.

Every time I load up the van for an outing I see my hospital bag, I  think, dang, we're having a baby soon. In fact, at my doctor appointment last week she said, "you'll see Shannon in 2 weeks and I'll see you in 3, as long as you don't have the baby before then." I laughed because I thought she was joking (which she was sort of) and then I realized it's actually very possible.

I don't think I've been in denial this pregnancy but I think about it less because I'm distracted by more kids this time around. Plus, I still feel pretty good. I sleep amazingly. I have little to no back pain. My sciatic nerve pain really only hit me mid-way through the pregnancy and has since not really bothered me much. This has actually been my easiest pregnancy out of the three.

Here's why I think it's been the easiest:

1. I was in way better shape when I got pregnant. I had great endurance with my other two but this time around I had done more crossfit/insanity/kickboxing exercises that made me feel so much stronger. I also think better muscle tone has helped with my back pain that I got so badly with the other two. I also spaced this third pregnancy farther away than my second and having a 3 and 5 year old has definitely helped. No diapers or potty training or reckless toddler behavior (okay, less of that last one).

2. I have a better attitude. I guess by the third pregnancy I've realized having [more] babies changes a lot of things, but it doesn't completely change everything. Darren and I are still us. We've learned to love more deeply and show more grace but we still laugh at the same things and enjoy doing the same things. We're still husband and wife first with a few extra family members. Isaiah is still him. Maci is still her. And Emmie will be her.

3. I'm feel more prepared for the unknown. Maybe not prepared, but content with expecting the unknown. So much of labor and delivery (and pregnancy in general) is beyond our control. I'm in a much better place spiritually this pregnancy that has allowed me to free up so much of my worry and planning and trust God's will in the entire process.

4. I'm busy. The good kind of busy. My days are full of parks, school, reading, swimming, and conversations with little people that I don't have much time to fester in worry, doubt or discomfort.

5. I had a miscarriage. Losing that baby not only made me realized how badly I wanted another baby but also helped me appreciate the honor of carrying someone's life inside my own. I appreciate that I'm able to do this again and so very grateful that Emmie will complete our family.

And here's why it's been the hardest...

I'm older. I know I'm not that old but having a baby closer to 20 is way easier than being closer to 30. It just is. I'm attributing he swelling and weight gain this time around to age because my health is probably better. I'm also anemic this time around. I totally get why people say, "have kids in your 20's." I completely get that this doesn't work for so many people and that's okay, I'm not saying you have to have kids in your twenties but the reality is pregnancy is harder on your body the older you get. And also the more kids you have. ;)

Sunday, June 19, 2016


I've grown a lot this week. A lot. A lot. I keep catching glimpses of myself in mirrors and windows and think, "holy crap! That's me?"

I'm still feeling pretty good so when I realize how big I am and factor in my weight gain, I can't help but wonder why things aren't hurting more. (Pretty sure it's the workouts I've done. Burpees until 32 weeks means no back pain apparently.)

I'm still swollen and sweaty and have crazy heartburn. I'm not able to eat much at a time even though I constantly have an appetite. However, I have been sleeping great and don't have nearly as many aches and pains as I did in previous pregnancies. I'm far less moody too. So ya know, that's good for Darren. Bless him. ;)

Appointment Update:
Weight Gain: 35 lbs. total
Blood Pressure: good
Baby Heartbeat: 164 bpm
Belly Measurement: 34 weeks

I also had my first, "Holy Crap, I'm about to have a baby soon. Like soon-soon" moment at the doctor. I go back in in 2 weeks but my doctor is on vacation so I won't see her until the following week. When she left she said, "Shannon will see you in 2 weeks and I'll see you in 3 weeks. You better not have the baby before then." I laughed because, hahaha why would I have the baby in 3 weeks? Then I realized it is totally possible. Time to start paying closer attention to all my contractions....

Tuesday, June 14, 2016

A Homemade Nursery

We are so ready this time around. I can't believe I'm only 33 weeks pregnant and Emmie's nursery is done and we have a stock pile of diapers. I guess this is what happens when you're having a third. Most people think the more kids you have, the less time/effort you spend on the nursery. This is not the case for me. I wasn't able to nest and create a room for Isaiah because we lived in a one-bedroom apartment in San Diego and I always longed for it. So with Maci and Emmie I was able to create each of them a space before their arrivals.

The one thing you do get wiser about by the time you're on your third nursery: money. People spend thousands of dollars decorating a room for their little babies. Granted some of that is simply having to buy furniture but "bedding" alone will cost you anywhere between $200-$500. And guess what? Bedding is so not important. The bumpers are cute but are a supposed hazard now, the comforter is giant and purposeless. So you're really spending that chunk of money on a bed skirt and sheet. Which is a total waste of money. [1st baby: bought him a bed set ($200), 2nd: made her a bed set (getting better, less than $100), 3rd: bought a sheet and made a bed skirt ($30)]

The entire cost of Emmie's nursery was about $203. I actually only spent about $103 because so much of it was hand-me-downs or gifts.

First I painted her room in Behr Satin Dolphin Fin. $30

Project #1: Gallery Wall
For this project I took old frames (I know I'm not the only person with a  closet full of old frames) and spray painted them. I used metallic gold, light aqua, and blush pink. The arrow I had already made with left over wood and dark walnut stain.

For the inside of the picture, I simply printed out the saying I wanted (What if I fall? Oh, but my darling, what if you fly?), then watered down some paint I had to "water color" paint some flowers. Done.
Total cost: $12

Project #2: Mobiles

For this I used twine, 2 metal rings I found at Joann's, and assortment of scrapbook paper. Cut the paper into even triangles, punch a hole at the top and tie on with twine around the ring.

Total cost: $25

The sign was a gift from my sister-in-law. Isn't it perfect? I love it. I didn't have to spend money on this but I'm assuming based on materials it cost around $25-$30 to make.

I had extra scrapbook paper triangles, twine, and fake daisies from other projects and decided to string a banner across her window.

Curtains are light pink with white polka dots from Walmart. (Brand: Eclipse, Cost: $30)

This ribbon bed skirt was also a gift. My mom made this. It is simply different strands of ribbon tied to a string of twine that I wrapped around the bed springs. This is such an easy and functional way to make a bed skirt that looks whimsical and custom. (Cost was probably around $30)

Ta-da! Here's her sweet crib area.

Total cost for the floral letter: $25. Tutorial here.

Lamp: $15, form Walmart.

A few other touches I received as gifts or had on hand.

This was originally from TJ Max and I needed to find a use for it.

Shelf is originally from IKEA. We bought it straight out of college.
Fabric cube storage is from Target, $40 for all 4.

We are so ready for you, Emmie Jo!

I'm so excited to have this room done and ready for our last baby and even more grateful it costs very little money to complete. ♥

Wednesday, June 8, 2016

Pesto Pasta Salad

This whole pregnancy I've had a slight obsession with pasta salad and now that the heat has cranked up for summer, I'm loving it even more.

My favorite part of pasta salad is that you can make a batch of it early on the week and eat it for lunch for the next several days. It's filling but still light and refreshing. You can add grilled chicken or sausage to it too.

Recipe |
1 box bow tie pasta
4 oz. Basil pesto
1 jar sun-dried tomatoes (cut Julianne style)
1 can sliced olives
1/4 cup shredded parmesan

Cook and drain pasta. Stir in the rest of the ingredients. Chill. Enjoy.

Monday, June 6, 2016

32 Weeks & a Baby Shower

Weeks along: 32
Baby size: 3.75 lbs. & 16.75 in. long
Cravings: All. The. Food. (Loving cherry tomatoes right now...pregnancy is weird!)
Currently reading: I'll Give You the Sun
Biggest Complaint: I have to pee all the time.
Highlight of the week: Glorious, hot sunshine and a baby shower spent with so many people I looooove!
When the Good Lord gives you 90* days and you are 8 months pregnant, you lose all feelings of shame and put on the only bikini that fits your behind and soak in some rays. (And you also look down and keep reminding yourself: yes, you did put bottoms on, they're there, I promise.)

My mom, sisters, and friends through me a shower over the weekend and it was lovely. Really. The food was so delicious, cake pops and cupcakes were adorable, and all the decorations were just precious. Emmie Jo is already so loved and I appreciated every single person that came out and contributed to the celebration of this new baby.
{It's all in the details.} Cupcakes done by a family friend. Ribbon banner by my mom. Cake pops & sign by my sister-in-law.

My sisters. ♥ Mom and MIL and little niece, Sidney.

The shower was held at my dear friend, Angelique's house. There were so many hands in this shower and I truly felt so loved.

32 Weeks Appointment Update:
Weight gain: 31 lbs.
Blood Pressure: good
Belly measurement: 32 Weeks
Baby Heartrate: 160 bpm