Life (and my belly) has felt really full these past two weeks! I’m really enjoying this stage of pregnancy. Having a big belly hasn’t gotten annoying or too uncomfortable yet, and I finally feel like a cute pregnant woman. Up til now I just felt like a swollen lady, but now that the belly is the biggest part of me, it makes the rest of me look petite ;-). I decided this week I would take a picture a day (though I missed Monday) to document how I’ve been dressing the bump and to try to give you an idea of what I look like throughout ordinary life. I have to admit, I tried a bit harder to come up with cute outfits this week since I knew I’d be taking pictures.
This first picture is a true candid. I made Kevin take my picture and he snuck one in before I knew he was taking it. I was trying to think about how I should pose and ended up with a sweet un-posed one. The baby is kicking a lot more these days. Two weeks ago I struggled with some bad hip/pelvis pain and had to be really careful how I was getting in and out of cars, how I sat, etc. But last weekend I think he changed position and since then I haven’t had any bad back pain or hip pain, which is wonderful. Before I used to feel his butt and feet poking me low in the pelvis and kicks right around my hip, now I feel kicks up by my rib and maybe little punches down along the side of my abdomen. I also don’t have to pee as often ;-).
For the next picture I tried to give you a good side angle. I also decided against having Kevin as my photographer. He tends to make me feel self conscious and I hate posing in front of him (it seems so fake! But then I remember the many many photo shoots with Esther and I never minded those…), so I used a self timer.
End of January and February became really busy as I picked up two new jobs: being the youth services aide at the library (while keeping my full schedule as a circulation aide) and going one school day a week to the high school a block away to do vocal coaching/assisting the choir director there. All the work was fun, but it was hectic since I was working on the weekends, a few nights a week as well as during the day, and often had to spend extra time dropping off Kevin and picking him up since we only have one car. This past week I was happy to cut back on my hours in circulation. I’ll still be doing a few shifts there til the end of February, but I’m able to pick the shifts that work best for Kevin’s and my schedule. No nights or weekends this week! That meant Kevin and I had more time to spend together each night, planning for the baby, thinking about house projects, catching up on our tv shows and even going out to dinner at a fancy restaurant one night! We went to The Mint, which serves local/fresh food and had the most complicated food descriptions I’ve ever seen on a menu. I read a lot of food blogs and know quite a bit about cooking and couldn’t understand 30% of the menu. We ordered 2 small plates–a pumpkin ravioli with lemongrass sauce (it was ONE medium sized circular ravioli) and roasted beets with quinoa, nuts and cheese sprinkled on top (I’m sure they’d die if they heard me trying to describe this, I can’t remember any of the fancy words)–and ordered one entree, a roasted pheasant leg and thigh on an apple, citrus, cranberry pilaf of some sort. It was all yummy, lots of intriguing flavors. I found that they weren’t dishes that I would want to make at home, or even eat big servings of, but were fun to eat small amounts of. I sipped on a Wisconsin made ginger brew with lemon, lime and lavender juices. It was lovely.
I’ve decided I agree with Martha and Rachel. Wearing dresses/skirts is more comfortable during pregnancy. I’ve had to be a bit creative piecing together my leggings and dresses. I have two longer maternity maxi dresses, but they’re not that convenient to wear to work. I have one shorter maternity dress Rachel gave me that I love, and I’ve been co-opting some of my normal dresses. I enjoy the challenge. I’m thankful that my thrifty tendencies made me hold on to pieces of clothing that I didn’t necessarily love on my non pregnancy body, because they totally work now that I’m pregnant! I always felt like the blue cardigan shown in this picture was odd and boxy before pregnancy. But now that my body is actually oddly shaped and slightly boxy, it looks nice! I guess the message to take away is never throw anything away ever (just kidding).
This last photo shows a dress that might not work for the rest of my pregnancy, but it does a good job of showing off the belly! I got to go to a toddler dance party in it at the library hosted by my friend Brooke and we danced the morning away. Working with the children’s librarians is great preparation for becoming a mom. I’m surrounded by cute children’s decorations and books and I get to see kids of all different ages. I stepped into a toddler story time last week and it was like taking a hormone bath. I just about cried with how excited I was to be a mom. The smallest things make me so happy. Hearing a grandpa read a story to his granddaughter while I’m shelving books. Trying to help a little girl find the “Merliah” DVD (spent about 5 minutes having no clue what she wanted, turns out it was a Barbie Mermaid DVD and I WAS VICTORIOUS!).
Sisters (and far away friends and family), I wish I could go through this pregnancy seeing you all more often! I’m so thankful for our dear new friends in La Crosse and the fun things we do with them, but couldn’t there be a teleportation device of some sort that allows me to see ALL of the people I love!?! There are so many babies being born this year to people I love and I wish I could be around for them. Thank goodness for google hangouts.
I might look back at this post in 5 weeks and laaaaugh at how comfortable and happy I was ;-). Right now I’m living in a fog of optimism though: my labor and delivery is going to go smoothly, our baby boy is going to be calm and sweet and a perfect sleeper, Kevin and I will adjust to new parenthood with a minimum of aches and pains and grumbles. Life is going to be beautiful :-). I’m prepared for hardships, but I like visualizing the good things. I’ve heard that’s helpful for labor too, so I’ll let you know how that goes…
Let me leave you with a picture of the beautiful irises and lilies Kevin got me at Bittersweet, a lovely little flower and gift shop. He surprised me with them last night after having taken me out to dinner the night before! I’m feeling pampered this week! In return (gift giving should be a two way street on Valentines Day, the woman shouldn’t get all the gifts!!), I made cinnamon rolls for breakfast and am making sloppy joes on pretzel rolls for dinner, his favorite.
Love to you all!