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  • lifestyle / pregnancy

    36 Week Bump Update

    36 Week Bump Update

    36 Week Bump Update

    36 Week Bump Update
    one of our maternity photos (taken at 33 weeks!)

    Whoa – what a whirlwind since we last spoke about a bump update on here..

    The format of this post is going to be a bit different than the usual bump updates since there is more of a story than the usual random updates I share every couple of weeks.

    First things things, I don’t shy away from sharing the details with you guys in this blog post (or really ever). Some of this info could be TMI to some but I personally appreciate when others are open and honest about what is really happening and plus there is no hiding the realness our bodies endure during pregnancy. Pregnancy is confusing at times and different for everyone but being able to relate to one another and share experiences has been so helpful (at least for me personally).

    Last Wednesday (at 34 weeks and 5 days), I went to the bathroom and looked down and found a little piece of my mucus plug. The timing was pretty interesting since I had never even heard of a mucus plug until the week prior when my friend was telling me about someone’s who fell out right before labor. Needless to say I was a bit shocked to find this in my underwear just shy of 35 weeks. For those wondering what it looks like, you can google it (it is a little gross) but it reminds me of something you’d see after blowing your nose or a gummy-like candy. It was off-clear and not dark like many women say theirs is before labor.

    After asking a few friends what the deal is with a mucus plug falling out, everyone had a different story (shocker..). Just like everything else in life, our bodies are unique to us and no two stories are ever the same. But I wanted to learn a bit more about this so I kept asking around. Some women lost theirs in pieces of the course of a few days while some lost their mucus plug all at once. Some women went into labor 24 hours later and others were still bumpin’ for another few weeks once it started to fall out.

    I immediately called my doctor and she wasn’t too concerned. Since it wasn’t bloody and I didn’t have any other symptoms of labor, she did think the mucus plug falling out meant much. Let me also just say how much I am obsessed with my OB. She is so zen, calming and just real. There is no fluffing of anything, she says it like it is but she also never is overwhelming or stressed. She never makes you feel anxious and has such a calming effect on patients – it is amazing and so appreciated (for the sake of personal info, I’m not sharing my doctor’s name on here). Continue Reading

  • lifestyle / pregnancy

    34 Week Bump Update

    34 Week Bump Update

    34 weeks, you snuck up real quickly…

    34 Week Bump Update

    As you guys may have seen, I just came back to Hoboken from a couple of weeks with my family down in Jupiter, Florida. Back just in time to finish up the last 3 weeks of work before my “maternity leave” starting February 1 and 2 days before I’m technically not supposed to fly anymore (cut that one close!). It is truly insane to even think that we are only about 6 weeks away from meeting our little bub. And let me just tell you that each week is truly going even quicker than the last and my bump certainly is in hyper growth mode now.

    I’d be lying if I said I was physically comfortable 24/7 and everything has been hearts, stars and rainbows over the past couple weeks. I am very very grateful that for the first 28 weeks or so of pregnancy, I felt amazing. No morning sickness, not too tired and even had decent energy too. Didn’t have crazy food aversions or weird cravings either. But the past few weeks haven’t exactly been too easy on my body physically. I am obsessed with carrying our little babe and watching my body change to grow our baby (more on that here), but the discomfort has really taken on a new level and each day seems to be getting a bit more crazy over here.

    Let’s chat about contractions for a bit..

    For starters, I started having a lot of Braxton Hicks contractions pretty much every single day. These ultimately feel like constant pressure for a few minutes in my stomach and that he is trying to escape my belly or something. A lot of pressure is happening during them and I have found it challenging to get comfortable during these too. Whether I am sitting, standing, laying but the good thing is they go away relatively quickly. I try to move positions and walk around as much as I can but at the same time, I’m pretty tired physically.

    My doctor recommended I started tracking the contractions a bit closer during my last visit, so this week I started wearing a tracker on my stomach from Bloomlife in the morning and again at night for an hour or two. I find that he goes a bit crazier at night time when I am laying down, so I try to wear it more after dinnertime to track his dance party in my belly.

    I had heard about Bloomlife from a few friends and read amazing things about it on social media before, so I was excited to test it out for myself. It also sounded pretty fascinating to me that something can help me track contractions. Bloomlife makes a tracker that allows women to automatically track and count contractions (both labor or Braxton Hicks contractions). It is a sensor and patch that can easily be taken on and off your body. Safe to say I got this just in time for the craziness going on in there. This is also the first ever clinically validated wearable contraction monitor that saves mama’s to be from having to count the contractions themselves. I already forget to turn the oven off these days, so counting this wasn’t happening. And you download the app to keep track of everything, making it so simple. I didn’t even know something like this existed until I was pregnant!

    Bloomlife is also 100% passive and doesn’t send any energy into the body like an ultrasound or doppler, it is totally non-invasive. I was a bit apprehensive on that at first because I didn’t want to add any weird energy onto the bump by tracking this. And since you rent the sensor from Bloomlife (usually for the last 6-8 weeks of pregnancy), it makes it totally more affordable for mama’s-to-be to try it out.

    There are three simple parts of using Bloomlife: the app, sensor and reusable patches. The sensor comes with a charger and you snap the sensor into the reusable patches that you can wear for up to a week (just don’t wear it in the bath or shower!). When you’re wearing it, it doesn’t detect the difference between Braxton Hick contractions and active labor contractions but the contraction pattern bar on the app shows you the regularity of them, which has been super helpful. Then you follow along on your app and it will record everything for you! Just make sure it sit still as the app calibrates with the patch and sensor. I laid down for a bit to sync it!

    The inner nerd in me is loving every moment of this. I’m going to keep wearing the Bloomlife tracker over the next few weeks so stay tuned for more here on that.34 Week Bump Update

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  • lifestyle / pregnancy

    31 Week Bump Update

    31 Week Bump Update

    Oh helllooooo 31 weeks! But really, where is the time going?!

    31 Week Bump Update
    a little preview on the madness in the nursery!

    The bump updates are going to be more and more frequent over here since there is a ton going on and so many changes happening in my body every single week. Until 26 weeks or so, everything was pretty status quo besides the bump itself growing. But once we hit that third trimester – wow – this ISH is getting very very real and time is flying by.

    Since we last spoke at the 29 week bump update, we have made some progress on what I mentioned we were looking into. There have also been a few bodily changes and shifts happening in the past two weeks. I feel like everyday I wake up and something new is going on. It is all exciting, but as the third trimester exhaustion hits, ya kind of just want everything to slow down but it is seriously go time over here. Especially prepping all my blog work for the next few months. My goal is to have all of January, February and March recipes ready to go and share with you guys when I am in full on “nesting” mode come Feb 1. That term still makes me giggle..

    A few things we have done to prep for the babe:

    • Wrote our birth plan – Put this together to share with the doctor for the next visit. I have mixed feelings on this as you can’t really plan for labor and I have zero idea how the little bub will want to make his appearance, but it was strongly encouraged by our doctor. I did find a really helpful outline on the hospital’s website where we are delivering, and I used this as a guide and filled it things that are personally important to Jord and I to try to do during the labor process. They asked pretty random questions from what kind of lighting I prefer to if I will want the Jell-O when I am in labor (went with no on the later). I did include things like the delayed umbilical cord clamping for a few minutes once he is born, saving the placenta to be encapsulated (will share more on this at a later date), skin-to-skin with the bub and I for the first hour he is born, having both Jord and my Mom in the room during delivery and so on. The birth plan really needs to be flexible and we know that there is a possibility not everything will go according to plan but nice to have the doctor aware of what is important to us.
    • Made an appointment with Lactation Consultant – I had no idea insurance (at least ours) covers this! I made an appointment with someone locally here in Hoboken that we read amazing things about online. They recommend coming in at around 36 weeks for a prenatal appointment then again once the baby is born. I highly recommend chatting with your insurance company and seeing if they cover this too. We have about 6 sessions covered and from what I heard, it is tremendously helpful to have someone to call. I have zero clue what I am doing and I know it is not going to be as easy as milk to nipple to baby.
    • Ordered a breast pump – Another thing insurance mostly covered for us. We had some out of pocket expenses for it because I wanted one that can travel easily with a battery but all in all it isn’t very expensive. They said it’ll only cost us somewhere between $30-$100 (wide range .. I know). We went with the Spectra S1. A pump is very personal to pick and I am sure there are others that work better for some but for now this is the one I decided on. I will report back if it works well for me once I put it to use!
    • Flu shot + Tdap – I cannot remember the last time I got a flu shot, but living in the NYC area and taking public transportation daily definitely puts me at risk. Plus I’m delivering in the middle of flu season. I got this shot at my 30 week visit and Jord also got one too. I did the no mercury shot (recommended for pregnancy). We also are getting the Tdap vaccine next week at our visit. It is recommended for pregnant women and any close family members to get this. It is for whooping cough and it should be administered between 27 and 36 weeks. These are two personal choices and something we were both comfortable getting. Our parents are all getting it too per doctor’s request and our own research.

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  • lifestyle / pregnancy

    29 Week Bump Update

    29 Week Bump Update

    Happy Friday, friends! I just waddled my way home (I kid you not) from the path station and I had a float of thoughts and updates I wanted to share with you for the 29 week bump update.

    29 Week Bump Update
    just shy of 29 weeks!

    Now that there are 11 weeks left, I am planning to do weekly or bi-weekly bump updates on the blog (last one was at 27 weeks). Really just varies on how much info I have to share, but I know how many of you love reading these (which makes me the happiest) so I am planning to share them as much as I can!

    So.. the third trimester – wowza. That happened so quickly, like insanely fast. The first 20 weeks of pregnancy went at a great pace and since that point I think time is flying by! There are only an estimated 11 weeks left until our little dude is expected, which means there is a ton happening over here to get ready for him. Doctors appointments are now every two weeks instead of four weeks. I come to the appointments with dozens of questions for the doctor now and at first I only had a couple each visit. We have so many things to think about over the next few weeks and prepare for. I feel like every time we are in “good shape” there are 10 more things added to the list.

    Right now we are looking into the birth plan process and writing ours. I’m not really obsessed with the idea of doing this because we really don’t know to what to expect when it comes to labor. I have no idea how this bub is going to want to enter the world, but my doctor strongly recommended just jotting down some notes on what is important to us so we can keep this in mind during delivery.

    A few things we are currently looking into to prep for the babe:

    • Cord blood banking – we need to decide if this is something we think this is something important to us right now. I like the way our doctor described it in that is something you want to get but never want to actually use. It can be life saving for some families while others never touch it, but it definitely isn’t a cheap investment to do without putting thought into it.
    • Delayed umbilical cord clamping – I am very interested in delaying the cord clamping after speaking with a few people (as long as we can) but definitely need to do more research on this prior to committing to it and adding to birth plan. Will share more on this once I have info. I have heard just as little as 5 minutes can make a difference.
    • Lactation consultant – a must to schedule! I have no idea what to expect or what to do when it comes to breast feeding. Sure I have learned that eating oats help milk supply, while peppermint and parsley aren’t good for it. We are ordering the pump through insurance this weekend (YAY!). But I definitely would be more comfortable with someone to call when I need help. If anyone has a recommendation of someone in Hoboken area, please let me know!
    • Placenta encapsulation – I have personally decided to move forward with this. I found a place in NJ that picks up it up at the hospital right after delivery and follows OSHA practices, etc. I’m keeping this info to myself for now but once I have my experience with placenta capsules, I will share more!
    • Preregister at the hospital – this can save time when you go into labor. As long as your insurance stays the same, no reason not to do this beforehand.
    • Baby CPR class – we aren’t doing many classes to prep for the baby but this is a MUST. I have no idea what I’d do besides scream, freak out and probably make Jord figure it out, which isn’t an option if he is at work.
    • Pediatrician in Hoboken – I have a few recommendations from friends and our doctor but would like to start interviewing and chatting with some in the area!
    • Hospital packing list – the ever-growing list on my phone, WOW. You’d think you are going away for a month. Once I have a bag packed, I will share the details!

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  • lifestyle / pregnancy

    27 Week Bump Update

    27 week bump update

    We are closing in on 27 weeks pregnant over here and I am officially freaking out over how fast this pregnancy is going by!

    27 week bump update
    A couple days shy of 27 weeks!

    I was going to wait until after Thanksgiving to share this update but I have been feeling so incredibly thankful to be experiencing this pregnancy. With the holiday tomorrow, it seemed fitting 🙂

    Next week I will be in the third trimester, which is so exciting but also means sh*t is getting real, real quick. The first 10-12 weeks drag since you can’t tell anyone and you also don’t really look pregnant (at least I didn’t). Then after about week 18 or so time really started to fly by and pick up the pace. I believe you truly need these 9 or so months to get yourself together and prepare but also embrace the last moments of it just being you and your significant other and to bed honest you and YOU. I keep calling it “the last days of selfish-ness”. And by selfish I really just mean being able to go to workout a few days a week, meet friends for lunch or dinner and not have any commitments or responsibilities other than work for the most part.

    You likely saw on Instagram but we took our mini “baby moon” around week 23. We started off in Palm Springs with Garden of Life for some fun work events then drove out to Ojai (more on that here) and stayed there and in LA for a few days. When we first started talking about a trip before the baby, I said Australia. Jord basically looked at me like I was crazy because of how far that is and I’m happy I listened to him because traveling wasn’t as easy for me as I hoped (more on that below). It was so nice to get away just the two of us in one of my favorite places ever. We got to eat tons of good food, relax a little bit and escape the construction for our bathroom renovations that was driving me insane. 9 weeks later though and the bathrooms are DONEZO.

    Now we are starting to put the nursery together since the crib and big pieces of furniture came. There is a changing table, stroller and we are such news for it all. We are still trying to figure out the exact look for decor that we are going for. I love all the neutral things and nothing too gender-heavy. Likely going with the some look and feel as our apartment with some added flares for the babe. Plus I want to be able to reuse these things for the next couple of babies coming down the road! We are hoping to have the nursery done by the end of this year (I will believe that when I see it) and then I will do a full reveal once the baby is born and is actually living in there. As soon as we took the the rocking chair out of the box, I sat in it for hours one morning just staring at everything. What used to be a room of random ISH is now going to be the room for our babe – it is so crazy to even see the floor in there, ha! Every time I walk by the room I pinch myself that soon our baby will be sleeping in there.

    I’m officially seeing the doctor every 3 weeks and soon every 2 weeks now that the third trimester is around the corner. I remember when they said “see ya in 4 weeks” for the first 25 weeks. Now the trips are becoming more frequent and the baby is growing like crazy. He is around 2 lbs or so they think (too early to measure but that is the average size) and about 14-15 inches long. When I saw he past 12 inches and was bigger than a foot long sub, I couldn’t believe he was in my belly!

    Around 25 weeks I did have a little fright where I was spotting one morning through the afternoon. It was light red and so subtle but it was there (TMI but you know me…). My doctor said to come in immediately to get everything checked out and thankfully all was okay. Still not sure what it was – maybe irritation from a bikini wax? But as long as the little bub is OK, that is all that matters!

    The past few weeks, the pooping issue has been at bay. I am pretty sure I nailed down what I have to do to stay regular (more on pooping while pregnant here).

    Now let’s get to more of the juicy updates for you.. Continue Reading

  • lifestyle / pregnancy

    21 Week Bump Update (we’re halfway there!)

    21 week bump update

    Today, we are 21 weeks pregnant! I cannot believe we are more than halfway there until our little dude is here in this world.

    21 week bump update
    after our anatomy scan at 20.5 weeks!

    I haven’t done an update on the blog since the end of my first trimester, and I know how these blog posts can be so helpful for us to have. For any future mama’s to be and even when the pregnancy is over and I am wondering about how I felt. It’s like an online diary of sorts. I personally used to read so many different blogger’s pregnancy updates and am always so fascinated on how they are feeling, what changes happen each week, their favorite products and more. I am going to try to do an update every couple of weeks until the end of the pregnancy. Now that we are past the half way point, I notice that my body is changing so much faster than it was for the first 4 months of pregnancy – it is crazy!

    First things first, what has been going on with doctor visits? We continue to see our OB GYN every 4 weeks. I know we start to see her every 3 weeks then 2 weeks as the due date approaches but we’re still on the monthly visits for now. We also just had our anatomy scan at the hospital I’m delivering at this week. It was insane and so cool to see our bub up on the big screen. For those wondering what the anatomy scan is, it is a very in-depth ultra sound that makes sure the baby is growing how it should, the skull/brain look good and it measures the size of the baby.

    Our little dude (that is what I call him to those who don’t know the name!) is 13.1 ounces, has all the key parts and we saw his fingers, toes, everything at the scan. They also do a crazy cool screen that actually shows you what the baby looks like. Usually it is a side profile since they don’t have much body fat and the doctor says it can be a little scary seeing them straight on. When we went for the scan, my parents and Jord were with me. It took about an hour to see everything and when we got the print outs I couldn’t believe how much our baby looks like Jordan already. Same shape head and cheek bones. It is so amazing and it definitely makes Jord feel even more connected to the baby since he doesn’t carry him around all day 😉

    Since the second trimester started, there have been many changes happening over here in how I feel everyday. Not too much has changed food wise. Still no crazy cravings! Just eating more than usual and fueling my body!

    It is truly crazy how fast this is going. I was walking with Jord outside the other night and started tearing up that it is halfway over. I have never loved a process so much. Being pregnant and having this beautiful bump makes me so happy.

    Now let’s get to the juicy stuff…

    21 week bump update
    20 week bump!
    21 week bump update
    21 week bump!

    Here are a few of my main updates 21 weeks in:

    • Bad taste in my mouth after dinner – this is random, I know. But every night after dinner and dessert I get the most awkward taste in my mouth. I have to brush my teeth and floss usually 30 minutes later or less. I think it is an indigestion type thing after eating but pretty random. If I go out for dinner or am out for the night, I make sure to pack mints or gum with me so I don’t get uncomfortable talking to anyone. I like to get this gum (no aspartame).
    • Stomaches after larger meals – this started just after the first trimester. I have always had “stress pains” I call them, which are pretty much upper abdominal cramps. They’re not gas pains or in my lower stomach but about 2 inches above my belly button and around my ribs. They were really bad from weeks 14-17 and when I went to the doctor, she recommended eating smaller meals and not consuming so much at once. I already am a big snacker and eat frequently but I also started to slow the beep down when chewing. This has been really helpful and (knock on wood) no stomaches the last couple weeks. I also was using digestive enzymes for a few days when I ate dinner and it helped.
    • Constipation a couple days a week – this is HUGE you guys. Sorry for anyone who doesn’t like to talk about poop but as a self-proclaimed professional pooper, constipation does not make me a happy camper. I have been feeling constipated a couple days a week now. Jord and I are very very open with each other (hello 8.5 years of being together) and when I was 18 weeks pregnant, I woke up that morning and could not go to the bathroom. Coming from the girl who goes like clockwork every single day at 8am no matter where in the world I am. I’m going to be sharing a full blog post on pooping while pregnant because I have SO many tips to share with you guys. Things that can work for anyone whether you’re pregnant or not. Definitely have a better handle on this now and I have learned that it is really common in pregnancy. Aka when I frantically messaged 12 of my friends who have had kids asking them if they ever couldn’t poop during pregnancy. They all laughed at me and assured me it was 100% common. More on this here.
    • Gassy – Week 19 rolls around and apparently gassiness came to join too. Jord always jokes I do not ever have gas (which is true). From either end, I’m pretty boring. But I think the more my stomach is changing and the babe is growing, it’s giving me a bit more gas than usual (you’re either shaking your head I’m gross or agreeing right now, right?!). Haven’t done much for this but just letting it take it’s course.
    • Insane thirst – I have always drank like a fish and peed every 30 minutes but wow! This trimester really took it to a whole new level. I can down 4 mason jars of water within 10 minutes and still be thirsty. I cannot make it through a workout class without refilling my water bottle and peeing half way through. I also notice my thirst is a lot more intense at night. I carry around this water bottle with me everywhere and keep refilling it. I love the it’s dishwasher safe too. When we did the anatomy scan and I drank, I could see our little dude drinking fluid as soon as I was drinking my water. Clearly someone is hogging all the water I’m chugging..
    • Backaches – again something I haven’t ever experienced. We bought a really cheap heating pad that is my BFF at night. I lay on the couch or sit with it at the kitchen table from 6pm – on. I really helps alleviate tension in my lower back. I also have been getting prenatal massages every 4 weeks (I use this service – code RACHL for $20 off). This really helps too and when I get a manicure I always get the extra 10 minute massage at the end. As I’m growing in front, my backaches even more.
    • Bump is HERE – if you follow me on Instagram, you see my weekly bump selfies in the mirror. Safe to say, little dude popped around 17/18 weeks and has been growing ever since. I think from week 20-21 I had the biggest growth so far and I hear from this point on he will keep on growing until the end. It is SO cool to see this happen you guys. For once I have a stomach and it’s not from food or eating too much – it’s because I’m growing a BABY! I lather oil and body butter daily to help with stretch marks and I heard this works wonders. I personally get stretch marks very easily so I’m curious if this will help my skin or not. Stay tuned on that end. But you can find me lubing up my stomach, ass, boobs and thighs for about 15 minutes everyday. Jord looks at me like I’m crazy when I say I’m excited to oil my stomach up. It’s truly one of my favorite habits right now. Plus when I do it, I can see where the baby is laying. If my left side is sticking out more, that’s usually where his feet are. It is so magical to see!
    • Sleeping on my side – thanks to the handy bump app on my phone, I was told at 18 weeks to start sleeping on my side only. I am a back and side sleeper so this isn’t too horrible for me but I found myself waking up in the middle of the night on my back way too much. I started to sleep with this body pillow and it is amazing. I put it on my right side and it reminds me to stay on my side when I roll over. And I sleep with it between my legs when I am laying on my right side. It does take up a decent amount of space in our little queen bed, but so far it hasn’t been an issue. I highly recommend one.

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