Sponosored Links

Allianz Travel Insurance

Whoops. Where’d the past month go? We’ll blame it on the newborn haze phase.

There’s so much I want to say about my first month postpartum, but I’m struggling to find the right words. There’s not really an eloquent way to discuss leaky boobs, a saggy belly and crazy hormones.


To be completely honest, I’ve had this post drafted in my computer for over a week now but I stop myself whenever I begin to write. I worry that what I have to say will be too negative. or too whiny. or make Baby Charlotte feel bad if she were to read it years from now…so I stop.

Don’t get me wrong – having a baby is all sorts of awesome. You have this amazing little creature in your life now and her learning to make eye contact is like Neil Armstrong walking on the moon and you want to throw a parade when she burps. However (and this is where things get tricky), post-partum reality is bananas. You’re tired and hormonal and your entire universe has just been flipped on its head. (You’re also sweaty. So very sweaty). For every ounce of awesomeness, it’s equally difficult as well.

But no one openly discusses that part.


Take breastfeeding for example: I read approximately 90934923497 blogs, books, articles and forums on pregnancy and labor. Yet, I only read one book and took a singular 3 hour class on breastfeeding. I took a twelve week class on giving birth – something that only happens for a day. Why didn’t I realize how challenging breastfeeding would be? It wasn’t until I started talking to other moms that I learned I wasn’t alone in this. Big, fat ugly cries during the 3 am feedings are totally normal in the beginning (for both the baby and you). You’ll want to quit and more than once, you’ll pray to the gods of all things holy to give your husband a pair of working boobs. It’s all par for the course. So why don’t we share that more?

I blame the internet. Blogs and social media make pregnancy and post-partum life look like a blessed breeze where the pregnancy weight just melts away, babies are geniuses who sleep and feed without any issues, and as the mom, you’re just happy to be a part of it.


Errrrrrrr. What? Am I missing something here? Was there a magic potion the hospital gave out that I skipped?

Just once, I’d like to read a REAL blog post from a mom with enough balls to put it all out there. Instead of showing her thigh gap in yoga pants, she’d show her squishy stomach and c-section shelf. She’d talk honestly about those first weeks of incessant worrying and Googling (“Why does my baby sneeze? Are cross-eyes normal? Is my grunting, projectile pooping kid an alien?”). She’d admit that sometimes she just wants her skinny jeans, a stiff martini, and her old life back – just for a few hours.

Why is it so hard for us to do that? Even now, as I dance around the issues in this post, I feel that mom guilt creeping in. Am I a giant asshole for not feeling blessed and grateful and happy 24/7? Does Worst Mom of the Year Award go to me for hating breastfeeding sometimes? Should I not publish this post because it makes me look like I don’t love my kid? Sigh.

As I slowly return to normalcy and hope to start blogging more frequently, I need to find a voice that works for me on here. I typically take a satirical, tongue-in-cheek approach to the topics at hand. I don’t take myself too seriously and I want to continue in that vein, sharing the good, the bad and the ugly. So sometimes I’ll humble brag about my kid (She slept SEVEN HOURS once. Obviously that means she’ll be the first female President of the United States), and other times I’ll be a giant Wendy Whiner (None of my clothes fit, I need to lose 50lbs and I’m going on a sugar detox. In December. Kill me now).

If nothing else, maybe  I can use this blog to set up a secret social network of moms where we exchange hand signals and code words for things like, “I don’t remember the last time I showered” and “I’m wearing 7 pairs of Spanx under this outfit”. Maybe then, I can bump into someone at Target and we’ll both raise our right eyebrow and immediately know that means Happy Hour begins at 3pm in our households that day.

In the meantime, I’m going to take the advice of our pediatrician: “Buy more underwear and do laundry less”.


What’s that old expression – You make plans and God laughs?

Well God certainly had a big ole’ belly laugh (pun intended) this week as Miss Baby C made her grand entrance into the world a few weeks early and in the most dramatic of fashions.

(Don’t let this face fool you)

The story of her arrival began on Sunday, November 3rd. After a day of Braxton Hicks contractions, by Sunday evening, I was having more serious back pain and contractions that I suspected were the real deal. Refusing to believe they were real, I opted for a bath, some time stretching out on the yoga ball and trying to sleep. However, around 3am, I lay awake with an incredibly uneasy feeling. Over the course of the previous afternoon and evening, I hadn’t felt Charlotte moving much and it was starting to concern me. I went downstairs and grabbed a clementine, Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup and muffin to try and sugar-bomb her into a dance party. No such luck. When a few more jabs and prods to the stomach were met with silence, things just didn’t seem right so I made a tearful and frantic call to our midwife who recommended we go to Labor & Delivery to be monitored.

We arrived at triage around 4am and were immediately hooked up to watch Charlotte’s heart rate and my contractions. After 30 minutes on the monitor, the nurse and midwife were concerned with how Charlotte was handling my contractions. They hooked me up to an IV of fluids, hoping to get some liquids to my placenta in case dehydration was the cause. After a full bag, there was no change so we added an oxygen mask as well. No help either.

At this point, the doctor on call came in with an ultrasound machine to take a look at both the baby and her environment to see if they could resolve her heart rate issues. Despite being pumped with an IV, Charlotte’s amniotic fluid levels were lower than they should be. Because I was only dilated to 2cm, we knew active labor was still a long road ahead of us so this was a concern.

As if the low amniotic fluid and uneasy heart rate weren’t enough on our plate, my blood pressure had risen dramatically over the weekend so I was being simultaneously tested via blood and urine for signs of preeclampsia, a dangerous blood pressure disorder that affects some pregnancies in the third trimester.

As we waited for the test results from my preeclampsia screening, the dr and midwife agreed I should be officially admitted. We were having this kid come hell or high water today (Monday, November 4th). Although Sean and I expressed our desire for a med-free birth with no interventions, the doctor recommended starting on Pitocin to get some harder contractions moving and see how Charlotte responded. This would determine whether my body (and she) could handle a vaginal delivery.

I was wheeled to our labor and delivery room, where we met with the in-take nurses and waited for next steps with the Pitocin. However, as we began answering the slew of ridiculous questions being posed: “Do you smoke? No. Do you drink? No. Do you do drugs? Yes. Crack on occasion”, the entire mood in the room changed dramatically.

Within the blink of an eye, our room was flooded with a team of people including an anesthesiologist, high-risk maternal doctor, midwife and 2 other doctors. The high-risk doctor broke the news that Charlotte’s heart rate wasn’t doing well and I had tested positive for preeclampsia so a c-section would be the only option for me that day. Before I could even fully process the information, Sean asked them what time they were thinking, to which he responded, “Immediately. We’ve cleared the OR and you’ve been bumped to the front. We need to get her out now”.

Complete panic. I started hysterically crying as a nurse thrust a consent form in my hand for blood transfusions. I could half-hear Sean asking the doctors about Charlotte’s brain activity and oxygen levels as a nurse explained she’d be prepping my body for surgery. It was chaos and we were terrified.

Within 2 minutes of their announcement, I was whisked away to the OR and put on a table. As they inserted the spinal block to numb me from the waist down, I shook uncontrollably from a combination of fear, cold, and the drugs being pumped into my system. Meanwhile, poor Sean was left in the empty labor & delivery room to change into scrubs and wait to be called in.

As soon as the NICU team arrived to assist the dr, they began performing the c-section. Sean still wasn’t in the room yet, so I was left alone on the table. I begged the anesthesiologist to talk to me about something…anything to keep my mind from the dark and scary places it was going. I kept asking him to tell me Charlotte’s heart rate and he had to keep reminding me they couldn’t monitor her heart rate at the moment because, DUH, my stomach was currently cut wide open. Oops.

Luckily, Sean was finally brought in and I felt instantly better. Neither of us spoke much, we just stared at each other and counted down the minutes until that fateful cry…

…and then we heard it – at 8:04 am – the sweetest sound in the entire world.

Charlotte belted out giant wails as they lifted her over the curtain to show her to us. I instantly started crying again, this time tears of joy.

Sean was able to cut the cord and they placed her right on my chest for skin to skin bonding while they closed me up. Her initial tests were all clear and our little peanut weighed in at 6lbs, 2oz and 19 inches long!

To say her birth was not what we planned would be the understatement of the year. I can openly admit that it was a surreal and terrifying experience for Sean and I, but it was also the most amazing. In the end, she’s happy and healthy and that’s what matters the most. (Meanwhile, if anyone wants a free lecture on natural birth methods, send ‘em my way since I’m overflowing with plenty of useless knowledge now. Ha.)

This entire pregnancy has been a learning experience, with Charlotte teaching me patience and serenity and acceptance along the way, so it only makes sense that her delivery would be the greatest life lesson we’ve received so far. Thanks for teaching Dad and I to prepare for anything, trust our instincts, and have some good old fashioned faith. I can only imagine the valuable insights you’ll impart on us during those notorious middle of the night feedings.

Welcome to the world, baby girl! We’re so happy you’re here!

As stated for the record on several occasions, I’ve been slightly OCD about things during this pregnancy…even my to-do lists had to-do lists.

Since I hit the ground running early, I gave myself (and Sean) a self-imposed deadline of November 1st to get.shit.done.

Over the past few months, we chipped away at the nagging list I left so lovingly on the refrigerator and this weekend was the final push for me. I don’t know if you can really differentiate between “nesting” and “completely neurotic”, but  I was a machine this weekend:

  • Freezer meals? DONE. Shepherd’s pie, pumpkin muffins, minestrone soup, and beef stew all await us in our storage freezer. Next on my list should probably be a DIET.
  • Changing stations? DONE. We live in a 3 story townhouse, which dictates a lot of our life. Forgot your shoes on the 3rd floor? Better to go barefoot. Think you left the oven on when you’re already upstairs? Welp, let’s hope the house doesn’t burn down. Let’s not even discuss going for things in the basement. It’s just not happening. Out of pure laziness, errrrr brilliant stroke of genius, I thought it wiser to set up diaper changing areas and baby supplies on all three floors to avoid trekking down a flight of stairs to her nursery at 3am just for a diaper change. It was weird waking up to a changing table in our bedroom this morning though – like an actual human is going to need that soon. WHOA.
  • Clothes prep? DONE. Even though I perpetually live in a world of “she doesn’t have enough clothes!”, I realize this has more to do with my own shopping habits (re: addiction) and less to do with real life. My mom came down last week and we spent an evening organizing the closet and drawers. Who knew baby cloths were so confusing? At this point, I still don’t completely understand the difference between 0-3m and 3m. I also had a brief freak out over the difference between “daytime” sleepers and “pajama” sleepers, at which point my mom kindly reminded me that a baby doesn’t know the difference and will pee/poop/puke in them regardless. Ugh, fine. Point taken.
  • Boring adult paperwork? DONE. My maternity leave paperwork is set, we’ve contacted our insurance, and started discussions with our financial advisor for a college fund and church for her baptism. Luckily, the hospital handles her Social Security number for you and we’ll hand in all of our pre-registration and birth certificate paperwork at my appointment on Friday. Take THAT mundane tasks, I just owned you.

I think what solidified how “done” we really were was our trip to Babies R Us yesterday. After months of rampant Babies R Us, Baby Gap, and Amazon shopping, I walked into the store to return something and *GASP* left without anything in exchange. Sean and I did a quick loop “just so I could look” and I didn’t find anything I wanted to buy.

I know. Try to catch your breath. It shocked me as well.

So for the next however many weeks I remain knocked up, I shall be the laziest excuse for a productive human being you’re likely to meet…well besides that whole pesky going-to-work thing. (Downside of an unpaid maternity leave = working until my water breaks in my cubicle. THAT should be fun for all parties involved.) We have a big date night planned for this weekend and Sean’s birthday is the following one, but beyond that my grand plans for the month of November include: movies, magazines, books, bubble baths, and convincing this kid that the outside world is much cooler than where she currently resides…

oh, and eating, too. LOTS of eating.


I’ve struggled with a blog topic this week because quite frankly, I’m sick of myself…I can only imagine how you feel about reading these pregnancy posts. Buuuuuut since it’s 10 am and I’m already half way all the way through a bag of m&ms, something must save me from myself.

If we just call a spade a spade and admit this entire post is going to be hormone-fueled rant with NeNe Leakes gifs as filler content, does it give me any leeway?


Well screw you too then, Gia.

Side note: NeNe is my new Ramona Singer. Cannot get enough of her. LOVE.


So the American Academy of Obstetrics and Gynecology released new definitions for “full term pregnancy” this week, which until now was considered 37 weeks…although most women are given a due date at 40 weeks, meaning pregnancy is really 10 months long, not 9 like all the movies claim. Sneaky bastards. However, the updated definitions are now:

  • Early term: Between 37 weeks 0 days and 38 weeks, six days
  • Full term: Between 39 weeks and 40 weeks, six days
  • Late term: Between 41 weeks and 41 weeks, six days
  • Post term: 42 weeks and beyond

Logically, I realize this is a good thing. We are a society that is induction and c-section happy, particularly for non-medical reasons. If there is no medical threat to the mother or baby then I think babies should be able to bake as long as they need. Emotionally though? I’m PISSED.

The only thing getting me through the miserable cesspool of third trimester was that magical 37 week mark where I could finally kick up my feet, breath a little sigh of relief, and smugly announce to the world that I was full term.  You’re telling me I have to wait another several weeks to do that?!


Well, now what am I going to do? I suppose I should just buck up and realize this is just pregnancy, not a death sentence. Millions of women around the world have done it, many in far worse condition than I am. Blah, blah, blah.


I am certainly no special snowflake when it comes to this “journey”. In fact, I could probably be the poster child for #firstworldpregnancyproblems. Oh your feet are swollen so you need to put on your ProCompression socks from your last marathon? Booo hoooo. Your diamond wedding band doesn’t fit so you’re worried people think you’re a trollop with a bastard child in your belly? Womp womp. You can’t find a ridiculously overpriced coming home outfit that she’ll poop and puke in 10 minutes later? Poor you, Marie.


But isn’t that the beauty of having your own blog? You can spin the truth however you see fit under the jurisdiction of “poetic license”.

In any case, I would like to say thank you to the people who have continued reading (and commenting!) on all of my pregnancy posts these past several months. I know it’s not everyone’s cup of tea and while I’m sure to have solicited my fair share of eye rolls, it’s been really nice having an outlet to complain to share things.


Just look on the bright side, because of the updated full term guidelines, I have even more weeks to really stretch these pregnancy page-views to the max. Thanks, American Academy!


Now, I must go and immediately delete all these amazing downloaded NeNe Leakes gifs from my desktop computer. Another pregnancy side effect? Insomnia-induced anxiety that caused me to panic at 3 am that I’d go into early labor without erasing my Internet history on my work computer. Not so sure Buzzfeed, Get Off My Internets, and Feedly count as “productive work environments”.





We’re in the 30′s folks – almost 35 weeks pregnant. 37ish days left.

Of course, all of this is a crapshoot anyway since she could come anytime in the next 3-7 weeks. (I mean, really, biology? Couldn’t we have narrowed the window down a little bit better by now?)

As you’ve probably noticed, I haven’t done a Weekly Update in several weeks. I’d apologize, but I highly doubt anyone really misses them. I’m officially the whiniest and biggest I’ve been in my life. I can assure you I’m not glowing. I’m not magically rubbing my belly and pontificating the miracle of life. I have three chins and my former triceps now flap in the breeze.  There is a lot of miserable complaining. NO ONE needs to have that documented for posterity on the Internet. I promise you. I’m just happy and grateful that Charlie girl continues to bake away because that’s all that really matters.

Even though I knew this would happen and I tried to avoid it, I have become completely fixated on these final weeks. I have a calendar at work counting down the days until full term, maternity leave, and my actual due date. My countdown to maternity leave should really be titled “Days Left of Waddling to and from the Overcrowded Subway Where NO ONE Offers Me a Seat”, since that’s what I dread the most (related: people suck).

It should come as no surprise that I’ve researched just about every labor preparation method and Old Wives Tale out there. While I’m not trying anything to induce labor until at least 41 weeks, I do want to mentally and physically prepare myself as much as possible for when it does happen.

Most of the techniques are of the hippie-crunchy-I’m-going-to-hug-a-tree-in-my-cloth-diaper variety, but I figure they can’t hurt:

  • drinking Red Raspberry Leaf Tea – started at 30 weeks with 2 cups/day and will work up to 4+ cups/day by 38 weeks. Rumored to help tone the uterus to make contractions “more efficient”. It’s caffeine free, so I usually brew it and drink it cold with ice cubes and some lemonade – if nothing else, I’m well-hydrated?
  • taking probiotics to fend off Group B Strep – for those unfamiliar, 1 in 6 women test positive for GBS and require IV antibiotics during labor. Dragging an IV pole around is something I’m hoping to avoid so I’m taking some extra steps to fight off any potential infection. Typically a good diet (and plenty of yogurt!) can keep your GI Tract “healthy” enough, but my midwife recommended fem dophilus probiotics so I take one pill/day. There are also lots of things you can do with garlic cloves – but I’m NOT going there. 
  • taking Evening Primrose Oil – will start taking at 36 weeks and up the dosage at 38 weeks. You can google it. Using words like cervix and effacement just make me squirm on a public blog.
  • eating dates – this was a new one to me, but recent studies have shown that women who eat dates on a daily basis have shorter labors with less interventions. I see this as the perfect opportunity to eat copious amounts of Sticky Toffee Pudding and call it a medical neccessity.
  • pelvic rocks, tilts, and swaying - imagine yourself on your hands and knees looking like a complete idiot in your living room every night while you watch TV. That’s me.

Beyond that, there are two Old Wives Tales I’m willing to test out. The full moon is supposed to bring on labor and since  November’s full moon is within days of our due date, I’m not-so-secretly hoping that’ll be the nudge Baby G needs to evict herself. To up my chances, I’m totally going to make this “famous” labor-inducing eggplant parm. Some restaurant in Atlanta has apparently put over 300 women into labor within 48 hours of eating this recipe. It’s likely a coincidence (how many women did it NOT work for?), but silly things like this are right up my alley. After all, I am the girl who peed on baking soda to determine the sex of our baby. The least it’ll do is give me some heartburn and a few dirty dishes (which I’ll promptly make Sean wash).

In the meantime, I’m going to do my very best not to drive everyone around me absolutely batshit insane. I’m sorry, friends and family. I really, really am…

I’ve been mulling this post over for a while now, but GOMI’s latest front page blurb motivated me to finally put pen to paper (well….keys to board?).

Oversharenting (v.): the act of obnoxiously spamming social media with every mundane detail of your child(ren)s life.

Root words: oversharing and parenting

Synonyms: every mommy blogger ever

Antonyms: our parents generation

As we inch closer to our due date, the topic of sharing future parenting stories and photos is in the forefront of my mind. Here’s the conundrum: I’m a social media whore. A crack fiend for Facebook. and Twitter. and Instagram. and blogs. and… and… and… I freaking love over-sharing stupid details about my life. Does anyone care that I ate 3 cookies last night or my opinion on this week’s episode of Parenthood? Nope. Do I put it out there anyway? Um YEP.

But, and this is a giant but (not to be confused with my own butt at 8.5 months pregnant, which is also quite large), I feel weird about doing the same thing with our baby. Now, I see my own hypocrisy here. For all intents and purposes*, I write a pregnancy blog…one where I’m guilty of over-sharing on multiple occasions, so it only seems natural that I’d flow into the world of parenting. Yet, the more “real” this kid becomes, the more protective I feel over her privacy, identity, and future digital footprint. In hindsight, I regret even sharing our name choice on social media because it’s “Google-able” now (if that’s even a word?). At 15 weeks, she was still a dreamy idea to me so it didn’t seem like a big deal, but she’ll be here soon – her own person with her own rights. Did I encroach on them already? Sure, there’s the argument that I’m her parent, which comes with its own unique set of rights to her decisions…but what does that really mean? Do I have the right to put her diapered butt on blast to people across the Interwebz just because she’s too young to ask me not to?


From a purely sociological standpoint, I find the entire topic to be pretty fascinating. There are plenty of opinionated articles and editorials floating around cyberspace on children’s privacy issues and social media, but as this is a relatively new phenomenon, there isn’t a lot of real research on the long-term effects this sort of (over)exposure has on children as they morph from those cute, chubby-cheeked pumpkins on Instagram into awkward teenagers and then full-blown adults. I know it’s a different world, different generation, yada yada yada…but I think of my own struggles with adolescence. Kids can be cruel enough to one another without years of a parent’s social media exploits to fuel the fire.

So I guess the question becomes: how much is too much? Where do we cross the line from a proud parent sharing an anecdotal tale or funny photo to “oversharenting” and exposing more than we should?

I imagine this is only going to get trickier for Sean and I once Miss C is born and looking all sorts of adorable. I can already admit that it’s going to be hard for me not to Insta-spam her every waking moment…especially when I’m home alone on maternity leave or doing those lonely middle of the night feedings. Social media has brought some wonderful people into my life that I otherwise wouldn’t have met and it continues to be a valuable wealth of resources and community for my unending stream of inane questions and commentary. I don’t want to turn my back on that, so hopefully, much like our other parenting decisions, we’ll find our groove and figure out something that works for our family.

As for the direction of my blog, I can say with certainty that I will not be a mommy-blogger. I will not be sharing breastfeeding struggles, potty-training techniques, or any of our daily adventures. Instead, this blog will likely focus on all the other parts of my life – getting back into shape, running, cooking, baking, trashy reality TV, and humble bragging cleverly disguised in self-depreciating humor.


For those that have gone a more private route – I’m thinking about setting up photo albums for family/friends through either Dropbox or using the iCloud Photo Streams since they are invite-only. I’d love to hear any positive or negative experiences with either? 

* updated: MOMENT OF SHAME: I originally had this written as “For all intensive purposes”. Should we just revoke my BA in English and Master’s degree in Publishing? Stick me in a hole filled with Healthy Living Bloggers to die a shameful death? I can’t even look at myself right now.

Opposites attract, two parts of a whole, yin to my yang, fat kid to my cake….

Whatever the expression may be, it definitely applies to Sean and I. In many ways we are completely different: he’s a charming extrovert who loves small talk and hates making plans in advance while I’m happiest at home with some quiet time and a zealously detailed Google calendar. Regardless of our contrasting personality traits, we have a rhythm that works really well for us.

As we started discussing labor and delivery, I was interested in doing the Bradley Method for a number of reasons – the biggest one being the partnership aspect to it. For those unfamiliar, Bradley Method is also known as “Husband Coached Childbirth” and emphasizes the role of your spouse in a successful (med-free) labor and delivery. I’m not here to spout the virtues of a drug-free birth, especially as a rookie who hasn’t even done it yet. For us, it simply suited my personality the best. As I’ve mentioned 32948203548234 times once or twice, I have a wee bit of trouble giving up control so the idea of being numb and not being able to work with my body during such an intense experience completely freaked me out (perhaps that’s why I’m also a terrible snowboarder?). Over the years, I’ve learned that the best way for me to reduce anxiety and stress over something new is to learn all I can about it. Hencethereforehitherto, 12 weeks of Bradley Method classes devoted to overloading my hormone-addled brain with information sounded pretty darn perfect (THERE’S EVEN A WORKBOOK. AND HOMEWORK. So legit).

We’re at Class 8 now and while we’ve learned a lot, I will admit I think they could be taught in less time. Some of it is a bit repetitious. However, with that being said, I am more and more impressed by my husband with each class we take. The man is a natural.


“Hey nurse, you better help my wife or she’ll stab BOTH of us”

One of the key components of this “Husband Coached Childbirth” is for your spouse to be your advocate during labor – he knows your needs and knows how and when to speak up for them. It may not be for everyone, but for me, this is a godsend. I’m the type who will leave the hairdresser with crooked bangs or eat a meal that’s wrong a at a restaurant because I don’t want to offend these total strangers I’ll never see again (ironically enough, I have NO problems telling my  friends and family how I feel. Sorry guys). I can only imagine when I’m in pain in the hospital that the last thing I’ll want to do is work up the courage to tell a nurse I don’t want something.

Enter Sean.

Sean is a salesman. Literally. Like he does it for a living. And he’s really, really good at it (#wifehumblebrag). Not only would Sean not hesitate to send back a meal at a restaurant, but he’d do it in a way that the waiter thought it was his idea and they’d end up grabbing a beer afterward. It’s actually ridiculous. I have visions of Sean fist-bumping the nurses working our room  and scoring us extra ice chips while I grunt like a stuck cow in the corner. It should be positively delightful.

As we learn more about the process and get closer to d-day, I am continually reaffirmed that pregnancy, labor & delivery, and parenting decisions are personal choices (so perhaps we should all lighten the eff up?).

Bradley Method works so well for us because it’s a natural fit for the tempo of our relationship. I see it as an awesome opportunity for us to focus on our strengths both as individuals and together as a couple to achieve something (errrr….someone?). Totally cheesy. I know. Blame it on the pregnancy hormones, but I’m feeling all sorts of love for this guy and what we’re doing.


Ohhhhhh kid, you don’t know what you’re in for with us as your parents.

Plus, it means Sean gets to call all the shots and be the boss for the day and we all know that won’t happen again any time soon ;)

It’s October 1st.


that means we’re having a baby NEXT MONTH. Perhaps people will stop side-eyeing me so much when I tell them my due date.


October feels like a major milestone. We’re in the home stretch now and I cannot wait to meet the adorable little alien that’s currently destroying my body cell by cell. She better be cute…and brilliant…and rich enough one day to buy her mom and dad a suuuuper big house. (Kidding. Kind of.)

To really drive the whole “Holy shit, you’re having a kid soon” feeling home, I arrived at work this morning to a bunch of calendar meeting invites for the next few months that I had to decline because I’ll be on maternity leave starting in mid November.

No 2 hour Friday afternoon off-site meetings for 3 months?


Bring on all the poop and spit up I can handle, Charlotte. I’d still prefer it to those meetings. Even if it is all unpaid. (THAT’s a rant for another day)

I’m sure this month is going to fly by between all the upcoming events and things left on our to-do list to accomplish.  October will be bringing:

- hospital tour

- breastfeeding class

- infant first aid and CPR class

- the rest of our Bradley Method classes (isn’t my husband SO lucky with how many classes I drag him to?)

- baby shower (!!!!!)

- throwing a party (for no real reason…because who doesn’t want a bunch of your husband’s drunk friends over at 35 weeks pregnant?)

- finalizing a pediatrician

- prenatal massage for this Large Marge

- cleaning and organizing a zillion teeny, tiny baby outfits

- spending the equivalent of a small country’s fortune at Buy Buy Baby and Babies R Us accruing the rest of the baby gear we’ll really, really “need”…obviously our daughter will never thrive if she doesn’t have the 3 play mats, a wipe warmer, organic crib mattress and the Rock n Play. Duh.

Should be a thrilling month. By the time November rolls around, I’m hoping my only real “task” left will be to prep a bunch of freezer meals and be as fat and lazy as possible. I plan to watch A LOT of movies and go out to as many dinners as possible. I have the sneaking suspicion I’ll also start going slightly insane waking up every day thinking, “Is this it? Will it happen today?!” However, knowing my luck and the stubborn streak both Sean and I often exhibit, this baby will probably be late and baking until early December. At which point, my only goal will be not to kill anyone.




Yesterday I tweeted this lovely sentiment:

Screen Shot 2013-09-24 at 10.06.02 AM


Here’s the thing – 3rd trimester is kicking. my. butt. (while also making it 5 times larger. Go figure)

Heartburn, fatigue, shortness of breath, restless leg syndrome, hormones, constant hunger, pelvic pain, swollen fingers/feet/everything. It’s been fun.


Over the weekend, I attempted giving myself a pep talk. I’m only 31 weeks, so the end is still many weeks away and I can’t be a miserable wench the entire time. I tried boosting myself up with how blessed I am and how grateful I should be to experience all of this. I took long walks with the dog to clear my head. I ate Nutella and peanut butter sandwiches. Nothing was clearing the funk.

And then something very cool happened.

At our last ultrasound at 28 weeks, we saw that Charlotte was still in breech position. Obviously this sent me into a tailspin of research on c-section concerns, absurd yoga positions, and weird old wives tales about frozen vegetables on your stomach and flashlights up your hoo-hah. On the opposite end, my midwife wasn’t concerned in the least and said not to attempt anything until 36 weeks. Since then, I’ve been doing my best to be patient. A rare characteristic in me, for sure.

Sean and I are probably going to be ZOMGTerrible parents because we don’t usually talk to my stomach out loud. It just seems awkward. Poor Charlotte is going to come out thinking her name is Stanley and that she’s a “such a good puppy!” because talking to the dog like a human is completely normal for us. Oops. But last night I found myself home alone for a few hours and figured I’d give something a shot. So I turned off the TV and just enjoyed the silence for a few minutes before I spoke out loud with a hand on my belly. I very kindly asked Charlotte to flip around for me and even promised  her that if she’d just flip head down, I’d let her kick me in the ribs all she wanted with no complaints. Speaking to your stomach is a weird and ridiculous thing. It just is.

Once I was done bartering with my fetus, I turned the TV back on and resumed my nightly routine of watching too much Bravo Network. Within a few minutes, Charlotte started squirming like crazy to the point where it was uncomfortable. I shrugged it off since we all know she has an affinity for the nightlife. However, after a few more movements, I realized these movements felt different and rushed upstairs to see if I could find her heart beat with the fetal doppler. (Um yep, we have one at home. Best $50 ever.) Instead of hearing it near my rib cage like all of my past times, her heartbeat is now several inches below my belly button. Homegirl FLIPPED!

Is it a coincidence? Probably. There are numerous scientific and anatomical reasons to explain it – most babies flip between 30 and 32 weeks as their heads get heavier and they start to run out of room and amniotic fluid. In fact, 96% of babies have flipped head down by 36 weeks, so it’s certainly not a miracle…and yet, it changed everything for me.

Emotionally, I felt an overwhelming connection to her. Her and I are a team and we just did something pretty cool together. That’s something you can’t reason away with logic.

Also, my daughter is clearly a super special advanced genius since she takes instruction so well as a mere fetus. Duh.


So I get it now. The aches and pains and weight gain and every other crap-tastic third trimester symptom is something I can handle and Charlotte reminded me of that. Who knew the best pep talk would come from someone that can’t even form words yet?


Apparently actions really do speak louder than words. Thanks, kiddo.

To use an old quote from my dad, we can do these remaining weeks standing on our head…which, in your case, turns out to be quite literal.




“A successful marriage requires falling in love many times, always with the same person”.

You’ll always be my person, dear.

Warning: long, ramble-y post filled with hormones ahead. Proceed with caution. 

Greetings from reality! We are back from our “babymoon” and oh-so-sad that dessert for breakfast and naps by the pool are no longer acceptable societal habits. Sigh.


Even my cankles have cankles at this point.

Although we were only on vacation for 4 days, I experienced the full spectrum of pregnancy hormone craziness brought on by the mammoth feat of having to wear a bathing suit at 30 weeks pregnant. Next babymoon? Antarctica.

In all seriousness though, body confidence during pregnancy has thrown me for a serious loop lately. I have A LOT of thoughts on the subject so I’ll do my best to put them into some sensical order, but no promises.

Prior to getting pregnant, my thoughts on my body during pregnancy were split into two camps:

1.) I want the perfectly round basketball belly while my legs and arms stay the same (HA!)

2.) I’m going to get HUGE because I know I’ll give into my cravings and why the heck not- it’s a temporary time in my life.

Here we are in the third trimester, and I’m still working to find a balance between the two.

The more I jumped into pregnant blogs and forums, as well as discussions with my fellow pregnant friends and moms, I quickly learned that many women divide themselves into these two categories as well. One of the strangest phenomenons to me is how readily ladies share their weight gain numbers- some almost wear it like a badge of honor. I’ve only gained 12 lbs so far! I lost 3 lbs first trimester, but gained 5lbs second trimester! No one asks a non-pregnant person how their weight is doing, and someone who isn’t knocked up doesn’t usually offer that information up either. So why are we so interested with it now? I thought #motherrunners were annoying. #Pregnanthumblebraggers are even worse.

I never weighed myself pre-pregnancy. I always based my weight on how my clothes fit and how I felt about myself. However, I found myself so obsessed with the numbers on the scale during 2nd trimester that I asked my midwife to stop telling me how much I’ve gained unless it becomes dangerous to me or the baby. There’s no need for me to know – especially when water retention, blood, baby’s weight, and other bodily fluids comprise such a large part of those numbers.

However, this weekend brought an onslaught of emotions on my pregnant body. A few hours after arriving to Hilton Head, I was feeling pretty darn good about myself. At Sean’s wish, I bared the belly and wore a bikini on the beach. I thought it’d make me super self-conscious, but I actually felt better in that than my frumpy, maternity suit (as good as any woman feels in a bathing suit at this stage).


I even spent part of the afternoon mentally writing out the blog post I’d do about body confidence during pregnancy and how I felt so beautiful and glowing and loved rocking the bump.

aaaaaaand then by Monday, I was a literal pool of tears as I cried while swimming because of my double-chin. I kept asking Sean to take photos of us to commemorate the occasion, only to hate each one more and more as the day wore on. My arms were too fat. My face was too round. Good god, was my butt pregnant too!?

By the afternoon, I was a mess and refused to be photographed anymore. Where had all the confidence from Saturday gone?


Now that my hormones have balanced out a bit, I realized that I fell prey to the comparison trap that we so often get caught in. Just because you’re pregnant, doesn’t mean the dangers of body-comparing stop. I need to remind myself that just because her ass didn’t get huge, doesn’t mean I should berate myself about mine. We’re different. We carry weight differently. I have always been a pear shape and will continue to be that way and so scrutinizing myself against sometime who is typically stick thin is just nonsense.

In a similar vein, I need to be a lot kinder to myself. So I don’t have the perfect basketball belly. So I’ve given into my cravings one too many times. I need to let go of the ideal I think I’m “supposed” to be and focus on being myself. My pregnant self. Sure, my face is much rounder than I’m used to. Instead of jumping down a shame spiral of how much weight I’ve gained, I should just be aware of it and move on. Maybe a little less cookie, a little more salad. An extra spin around the block. It’s not the end of the world, so I should probably stop acting like it is.

Most importantly, I need to think about the baby. Over the next 7-12 weeks (depending on how long she bakes for), she’s going to double and triple in size. She’s gaining weight and important fat storage at a rapid rate now and my body is responding to that. So it’s time to stop worrying about whether my thighs look huge in these pants and start concerning myself with being in good shape for labor and parenthood because ultimately that’s what all of this is for. The weight gain and the swelling and the mood swings are all temporary. They’ll go away soon enough and I’ll be left with an amazing little gift as a result – Miss Charlotte Colleen.