Saturday, June 28, 2008

Scrapbook Page

How I'm announcing the sex to some family members!

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

My baby weighs over one pound!

I had my 22 week follow up Level II ultrasound with the perinatologist today. Chris couldn't make the appointment because of work. I thought it would be fun for my friend, Bonnie, to come to the appointment.

We had to wait forever to get in to see the doctor. The waiting room was full which is unlike this doctor's office. I soon realized why it was so crowded. One girl brought her entire family and friends to the ultrasound. There were 4 other people with her!

Patches was kicking before the appointment started but he settled quietly in for the scan. I guess the sugar rush from the orange juice wore off! He's measuring a little ahead at 22 w 6 days instead of 22 w 1 day. His heart rate was 160 (maybe from the OJ?) so that again doesn't follow the old wives tale about high heart rates indicating girls.

They estimated the fetal weight to be 1 pound and 2 ounces. I was concerned that weight might be a little high from what I've read in the baby books but the doctor reassured me that it was completely normal. In fact Patches appears completely normal and healthy! Thank God.

Now for the pictures!

We got our first 3D picture of Patches. The tech couldn't get a real good view of him but you can see one of his arms up by his face and his nose and mouth pretty clearly. She told me that in 6-8 weeks the 3D would be closer to how he'd really look when he's born. Right now he doesn't have enough fat to fill out his skin so he's a little alien looking. But still cute in my opinion! :)

Here's a profile of Patches. His head is on the left and his little legs and feet are sticking up in the air. Probably getting ready to kick on mommy.

And just because Patches is an October baby, here's another face on shot where he looks like Skeletor. Tilt your head side ways. The top of his head is on the left and his eye sockets are above the bright spot which is his nose. His mouth is the black opening below that.

When we were looking at this angle, he opened his mouth really wide and then closed it like a yawn. It was super cute.
After the appointment, Bonnie and I went out to lunch before she had to get back to work. I cut one of the ultrasound pictures off the strip so she could take it with her. She usually sees Chris several times during the day so I knew she could give him the photo. I wanted him to get a surprise after a hard day's work and he'd have an excuse to show off his son! :)

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

I'm officially a midwife patient

I've been seeing an OB but he has two certified nurse mid wives in his practice. They can deliver babies too, just no c-sections.

I love my OB. He was great during my miscarriages and when I had cysts and abnormal pap smear scares. I'll probably still see him from time to time. He's very reassuring and doesn't really rush too much.

Donna (the midwife) can take a lot more time for the appointments and doesn't brush me off if I have concerns. My OB loves to quote statistics which I appreciate with my google MD (ha ha) but we all know that stats don't really mean what will happen to us as individuals. If it was so easy to be on the majority side, we'd never had one miscarriage let alone more. And we wouldn't have infertility problems etc. Some stats are comforting but some just aren't.

The first time I saw Donna for this pregnancy, she practically read my chart from front to back. I have a huge chart as you probably do too. My OB always says my chart looks beat up and the nurse just this week mentioned that I have a big chart. Anyway Donna caught things in my history that I didn't even know and things that I'm sure my OB would have missed.

One example was that I'm GBS positive. It was found in my last pregnancy during a urine analysis. They can assume that from time to time I'll have that bacteria again. It's not a big deal and is pretty common but will require an IV of antibiotics before delivery. They normally do a swab once or twice during pregnancy to check for the bacteria. The swab is pretty invasive. Some girls report that they swab not just vaginally but rectally too! Eww.

So Donna noticed that I already tested positive and told me to remind them so I wouldn't have to be swabbed for this pregnancy. They will just assume that I'm positive. Anyone that looks for a way to save me a poke and prod is my kind of person. ;)

I have no problem with a male doctor. Not at all. Again, I love my OB and Chris does too. But there's something comforting when talking to Donna. She has a little better edge. She's had three pregnancies. She has all the female parts that my male OB can only quote stats about.

I may try to go without an epidural for delivery. Donna will be more supportive of that and allow me more time to do my thing. I may end up with an epidural. I may end up with a c-section by my doctor. Who knows. But I'd like to see what happens.

Donna asked me several questions regarding my vitamins, breastfeeding, circumsion, and birthing classes. She gave me a run down of my coming up appointments. I go back in 4 weeks (week 25 of pregnancy) and then another 4 weeks (week 29) will be my glucose test. After that I will go to appointments every two weeks starting at week 31.

So I've officially switched from my OB to a midwife. I'm borderline crunchy. :)

Saturday, June 21, 2008

This is XP from SAL so you may have read it already.

What a freaking day.

Our new bedroom furniture got delivered this afternoon. DH and I spent the entire morning taking down the old furniture and moving. I ended up helping lift a headboard bookcase that he couldn't handle alone.
Around 11 am I started getting sharp cramps. I worked a little longer and then gave up to rest on couch. I drank 2 bottles of water and started working on my a third.
Around 4 pm, DH told me to call my OB since the cramps weren't letting up. My own doctor wasn't on call so I spoke to another. That doctor said if it was bad enough that I called him, then I needed to go to the ER. I really wasn't expecting that. I thought my OB would just reassure me and give me some guidelines to follow if it got worse or didn't improve. I don't run to the doctor over every little thing and going to the ER was the last thing I wanted to do!
During the 30 minute drive I had 5 of the really sharp cramps. I had a couple more while we went through security and check in. I ended up being sent to L&D. That totally freaked me out. It felt so strange to walk through those doors into L&D triage. This isn't supposed to be happening until October! I felt like an imposter on that floor.
They had me drink 32 more ounces of water. The nurse had a hard time finding the heart beat with the fetal monitor because the baby is so small. She finally had to get the doppler out to locate him. Then she strapped me up to the fetal heart monitor and did a NST. They can't do a ffn test to see if preterm labor is likely to start soon until after 24 weeks. By that time I wasn't having any more intense cramps. They were just minor twinges. The NST strip just showed one contraction and some uterine irritability. My urine analysis came back okay as did the other tests.
They sent me home with the elastic strips that they use to hold the monitors on my belly. Whenever I come back (whether for another check or for the birth), I'm supposed to bring them along! They also gave me a sheet on preterm labor which basically said to do what I did. You're supposed to lay down on your side, drink 2-3 glasses of water, and call if you don't feel better in an hour. Well, I had waited 5 hours at home but I didn't rest the entire time. She told me not to feel bad for coming in, that it's better safe than sorry. I still feel kind of bad. If I had just waited another hour, the cramps would have gone away.
So, I'm supposed to take it easy, stay hydrated, and only supervise any more work on our bedroom. I follow up with the perinatologist on Wednesday. I want them to measure my cervix because they did not do that today at the hospital.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Pineapple Stuffed Jerk Chicken

I used MS Every Day Food's recipe for Pineapple Stuffed Jerk Chicken .

I used fresh pineapple instead of canned and I cut the recipe in half since it's just the two of us. I kind of wish I'd made a full batch and froze half! Also I cut the jerk seasoning in half and probably could have quartered it as I didn't use it all. I didn't want to make it too spicy since I wasn't familar with it.

Serves 8
2 tablespoons dried thyme
2 teaspoons ground allspice
1/2 to 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
3 tablespoons sugar
Coarse salt and ground pepper
2 cans (20 ounces each) pineapple chunks in juice, drained
2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
4 scallions, thinly sliced
8 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves (6 to 8 ounces each)
3 tablespoons vegetable oil, such as safflower
Cooked rice, for serving

In a small bowl, combine thyme, allspice, cayenne, 1 tablespoon sugar, 1 teaspoon salt, and 1/2 teaspoon pepper; set spice mixture aside. In a medium bowl, stir together pineapple, lime juice, scallions, and remaining 2 tablespoons sugar. Season stuffing with salt and pepper, and set aside.
Lay chicken flat on a work surface. With a paring knife, cut a 2-inch-long slit in the thick side of each breast; insert knife, and pivot inside chicken without enlarging opening, carefully forming a deep pocket (make sure not to pierce the opposite side). Dividing evenly, tightly pack each breast with stuffing; rub exterior with oil, and sprinkle with spice mixture.
Heat broiler, with rack set 4 inches from heat. Line a large rimmed baking sheet with aluminum foil; arrange chicken on sheet. Broil until chicken is opaque throughout and an instant-read thermometer inserted into stuffing reads 165, 15 to 20 minutes. Serve stuffed chicken with rice.

Helpful Hint
To freeze: Arrange on a baking sheet (they should not touch); freeze until firm, about 1 hour. Wrap each in plastic, and place in a resealable freezer bag; freeze up to 2 months. To broil from frozen: Unwrap chicken and proceed with step 3, broiling about 40 minutes, turning chicken over halfway through.

Sweet and Sour Pork Chops with Fried Rice

Unfortunately, I forgot to take a picture last night so all I have to show you are leftovers. We ate up all the good veggies (snowpeas and baby corn).

based on a recipe from

2.5 lbs pork chops
1 large onion diced
approx 1/2 of a fresh pineapple cut into chunks, reserve the core (orginal recipe said to us 20 oz of canned pineapple)
1/2 cup vinegar
1/2 cup brown sugar
4 tablespoons soy sauce
1/2 teaspoon ginger
1/4 cup cornstarch
1 1/2 cups water

1/2 green bell pepper
salt and pepper, to taste

In a dutch oven or large skillet, brown the pork chops. Add onions, juice from the pineapple and core, vinegar, soy sauce, sugar, ginger, salt and pepper.
Cover pan and simmer for 1 hour or until pork chops are tender.
Set pork chops aside. Discard the core.
Combine cornstarch and water, then stir into pan; add bell pepper, and chunks of pineapple. Bring to a boil and cook until sauce has thickened to desired consistency. Add pork chops and cook until heated through.

Serve over white rice, pasta, or noodles.

Fried Rice
Adapted from a Martha Stewart Every Day Food recipe

Serves 4

2 bags of Uncle Ben's long grain rice boil in a bag (original said to use 1 cup long-grain white rice)

some of the above pork cut into small pieces. (The original recipe called for 2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, 12 ounces total)

Salt and freshly ground pepper
1 tablespoons vegetable oil
2 large eggs
2 scallions, trimmed and thinly sliced on the diagonal
1 teaspoon ginger
1/2 cup diced red or green bell pepper
2 tablespoons soy sauce
1/2 teaspoon sugar
1/2 cup homemade or low-sodium store-bought chicken stock

1 small bag of frozen veggies such as snow peas, baby corn, carrots, green peas

Cook rice according to package instructions; set aside.

If using chicken: Pound breasts with a mallet until 1/4 inch thick. Cut into strips (each 3 inches long and 1/2 inch wide). Season with salt and pepper.
Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a medium nonstick skillet over medium-high heat until hot but not smoking. Cook chicken until just cooked through, 3 to 4 minutes. Transfer to a plate.

If using cooked pork skip above and cook the egg first.

Reduce heat to medium; add one tablespoon oil. Add eggs; just as whites begin to set, stir to scramble. Add scallions and ginger; cook 1 minute. Add reserved rice and bell pepper; cook 2 minutes. Stir together soy sauce, sugar, and stock; add to skillet. Add reserved chicken or pork; cook until heated through, about 3 minutes. Toss with cooked veggies.

Patches has stuff!

The first thing I received (and the only thing I got for Mother's Day!) was from Stephanie. It was very special that she sent me something. And I appreciate it even more so because of what she was going through herself. She sent me a cute Mother To Be card and a great story book for our baby. That was the first book we read out loud to Patches at bed time. Hey, the baby book said baby could hear by then!

At our big ultrasound at 18 weeks, we found out we were having a boy. So right after the doctor's appointment, we went shopping to celebrate. JCP had Carter's onsies on sale for $3 a piece. Here's a picture of the four that we bought that day. Patches has clothes! It's official, we're expecting to have a baby boy in October!

My new friend Jeanette,sent me some cute little things for Patches and a ton of maternity clothes. She said that she had one outfit and ended up sending two jackets, three shirts, two dresses, and a jean skirt! WOW! I was overwhelmed.

Jeanette sent a nice card, a Just Add Milk onsie, a cow finger puppet, a waterproof pad, and What To Expect The First Year. Everything was so cute perfect!

I'm very thankful of those things that have been sent to us. And most importantly for this little baby growing inside me.

Hopefully a preview of what's to come in October...

This is Christopher holding his not even two month old nephew, Zachary, back in 2002. Isn't it cute? A big guy with a little baby. Zack looks comfortable but Chris is questionable. Actually he's doing pretty good holding a newborn. Babies are pretty scary after all. :)

I'm sure when it's our own son, Chris will get the confidence and be holding him like a pro in no time. He's already being a great daddy to our little one. He loves to talk to Patches and even read to him his first bed time story.

Just to flash forward from the first picture, here are the twins Zachary and Amber playing on Mother's Day 2008. Zachary is so tall that he looks like an 8 year old! Until he talks, and then you know he's all 5 year old. ;)

Mother's Day is when we told Christopher's entire family. We were at the Sea Watch restaurant which is right off the intercoastal. The restaurant is has wonderful sea food and the views of the water are awesome.

Here's some pictures from that day.

The family enjoying the ocean air behind the restaurant after lunch.

The view from the front of the Sea Watch.

Some of the seating is open but you still get great views from the enclosed areas plus air conditioning! Chris is here holding my purse. What a guy. He wouldn't do that 5 years ago.

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Tag, I'm It!

I've been tagged by Stephanie, who is a great friend that I *met* a year ago. We've never met in person but we talk several times a day. She's been there for all my highs and lows. I hope Stephanie has more high points in her life than low ones. But I'm here for her through them both.

Back to the game of tag. As It, I have to write a six word memoir... a Meme. From Stephanie's blog... "The Meme originated over an idea that was prompted by the book written by Larry Smith and Rachel Fershleiser, Not Quite What I was planning: Six Word Memoirs by Writers Famous and Obscure. It's a compilation based on the story that Hemingway once bet $10 that he could sum up his life in six words.
His were- "For Sale: baby shoes, never worn."

I was married for eight years in my 20's. I got divorced, moved 1300 miles away,got a new job, met Christopher. And a few years later fell in love with him and got married. We got a late start to building a family.

A year after we got married (ok, it was only 10 months!) we started trying to conceive a little one. We did. Twice in fact, from March to August of 2007. We lost both babies. In an unexpected turn, this brought us closer and made our love stronger.

Now, I'm 19 weeks pregnant with a little one that we hope will be our first born child. I'm amazed by Christopher's strength and dedication to us, our family.

Late start, stronger love with family.

Okay, now it's my turn to tag 5 others. They in turn are supposed to continue the game by writing their own Meme and tagging five blogs each. Sorry, sweet things, you're now It:
Darreth, kekis, Katie, Just a girl in the South, and Brandy.