Well, I am officially 25 weeks pregnant! Things are really starting to come together, I couldn't be happier! Here's what's been going on...
Physically: My belly is huge! (see pix below) I think I'll bypass that 25-35 pound weight gain recommendation. I recently read, however, that the average weight gain is between 40-50 pounds...that makes me feel a little better, but I also carry it worse since I'm only 5'3". I have finally been feeling Stella move! Everyone kept saying "oh, you'll just know when you feel a kick" Well guess what? I didn't just know, which made me feel like a bad mom. It was more like- is she moving? am I hungry (again?) do I have to pee (again?) But then one day the movements were stronger, and by then I was sure it was her! Mark has yet to feel her kick. I think it might be because she was sitting farther back in there than normal (not a concern, just harder to feel her move). I thought I might have been having some Braxton Hicks contractions this week, but wasn't sure. Nothing strong enough to be concerned about. Speaking of being concerned, this is a time to be very tuned into your body. My insurance sent me a copy of the Mayo Clinic Guide to a Healthy Pregnancy book in the mail, and I consult that (and also What to Expect when you're Expecting) every time I feel like something's "off" with my body. They provide such comfort and let me know when I should call the doctor and when it's just my new "normal". I'm trying to find that fine line between being safe and cautious and just plain crazy! I purchased some of the new Tums mints to help with heartburn on the recommendation of one of Mark's co-workers. They are fantastic! They work instantly, are not chalky, and leave you with fresh breath too! The only other symptom I've had was last weekend on Food Prep Sunday...after doing some veggie freezing from our garden, making 2 loaves of bread, a dozen oatmeal muffins, dark chocolate brownies, oatmeal cookies, and fruit dicing and washing, my feet were really swollen! Guess I can't keep up like I used to... Otherwise, I feel great-eating better, getting in some cardio and yoga, and got my energy back...let's hope this carries into the 3rd Trimester (which is just around the corner already).
Emotionally: I feel like my old self again, gone are the random crying outbursts (for now)! A few weeks ago I was feeling really overwhelmed...there's so much to prepare for and I am so clueless! I found a few checklists on Pinterest- one I consult weekly (view it here ) and one I consult monthly (view it here). There are certainly more lists out there, but I chose just 2 so I don't lose my mind! I also read What to Expect While you're Expecting, The Pregnancy Countdown Book (Susan Magee), and Preparing for a Healthy Baby (Kendis Moore Drake-my doctor gave me this book). I also recommend reading Belly Laughs by Jenny McCarthy. It made me laugh, cry, and I also consult it with symptoms from time to time! In addition to all this reading, I keep a daily log in The Pregnancy Journal (A. Christine Harris). My sister-in-law gave me this book and I love it! It's also packed with good information. Now, that may be too much reading for most, but I LOVE to read so I think it's great! These sources of information help me feel prepared, like I won't miss something important as I get ready for Stella to arrive. I also made a checklist of the things I want to accomplish (both for Stella and in general) before my due date. What can I say, it's that OCD/organization kicking in again! I like to feel prepared, it helps me relax. So with all that under control, I don't feel overwhelmed anymore. Even if that's too extreme for most people, I suggest taking baby steps (hehehe) to feel prepared for your little bundle of joy...more work up front always helps you feel less stressed in the future!
What I've been up to: Major headway in the nursery! Once it was cleared out and cleaned, Mark painted it and cleaned the carpets. We ordered a crib and glider and got them set up. My sister loaned us her changing table, so that's in there now as well. I decided on a "theme" (although my sister Abby laughs at me because I'm not a typical theme/pink kinda mom) and began some basic decorating. I'll post a picture of the nursery in a bit, just waiting on a few other finishing touches before I do. Abby and I also attended a class on cloth diapering last weekend. It was very informative and overwhelming at the same time! It was run by a stay-at-home mom out of her home. She has a shop in her basement that carries countless diapers and related products. She also offers help setting up a diaper registry and is available for questions. She has a wonderful website! I still have a little more research to do before I set up my registry but I am looking forward to this journey! Yes, it will be a little more work and more money up front. And while I would never push my beliefs on anyone, to each their own, I am personally excited about going the cloth diaper route. It is better for the environment, cheaper in the long run, and safer for your baby. All things I value highly! The last baby activity in my world was being interviewed for the local newspaper. I went in last Monday to give my opinions on the Harmony Test we had done back in May (see this post to read more). Basically I just filled her in on why we chose to have the test done, how we heard of it, and how it worked. She also interviewed a midwife for the article, which is being published to inform pregnant women about this new genetic test available to them. I was excited to be a part of it because I don't see the point in doing the 1st Trimester Screening if the next step is the Harmony Test anyway. It was nice to save money and time and skip the first test, and I hope that is an option to other moms as well in the future. Looking forward to reading the article next week! (hopefully I can post the article onto the blog for those wanting more information).
And finally, the latest prego pictures: