Sunday, September 30, 2012

Pumpkin Patch Kids

This Saturday we just had a day for fun and pictures! David is loving using our new camera and we are capturing the last few weeks of our baby as a bump in Mama's belly :-)
*Side note, today a little girl at the church potluck was sitting on a friend's lap beside me. She poked my belly and asked in a sweet little voice "is there a baby in there?" So cute!

We're somewhere between 38 and 39 weeks. I happened to see my midwife's chart on Friday and saw they are going with a different date then they gave me over the phone, a later date. That's cool. More opportunity for baby to come on his own before the pressure of inducing starts. So, as fate smiled upon us this weekend, it was the kick off of Pumpkin Fest! Just when Baby Bear hits pumpkin-size!


*What I wore: cardi/old navy; cami/; maternity jeans/indigo blue from Motherhood; flats/Walmart

Pumpkin artist 

 Hubby found a friend in the apple barn! :-)

Attempting to slide the baby out ;-) 
Ineffective, obviously! 

Next idea, curb-walking. Suggestion given by 4 people. Apparently you can't make a baby come when he's not ready. 
 Sliding and walking makes a mama tired. Time for a rest!


My turn with the camera! I LOVE that fall is coming :-) Also loving the close-up feature on our camera!
Hope everyone else had an awesome weekend!

Wednesday, September 26, 2012


This week I have inundated myself with birth literature (Our bodies... pregnancy and birth book), our Pink Kit, birth documentaries (More business of being born... the 4 part series follow up to the original documentary. YOU MUST WATCH THEM BOTH!) And have learned/re-affirmed that everything I'm going through is normal. Slowly its helping me come around to acceptance of how long it can really take to eject a large object from a tiny space. Since 33 weeks I've had reoccurring contractions, sometimes more painful stronger than other times, but none that turn into the real deal (obviously). I began hoping/believing those who thought I would go early, and for good reason, I did have preterm labor... Now I have to accept that baby likes his home and I can trust God and the child to pick the birthday.
Any way, what I've learned: before you ever get to the first stage of labor, you can go through this sort of inactive phase of labor for days and weeks. So, all these tuggings, pelvis pain, back pain, and other dis-comfortable experiences my body is having isn't necessarily unproductive. My uterus is trying to pull up on my cervix and get it effaced. Will it be successful? We have yet to see, but we can hope!
Hope and acceptance is my main mantra right now.
Last night I had the undeniable urge to walk. Hubby was very sweet and we spent two hours walking a track at a park. Frequently I would have to stop and squat or get into some other pelvic-relaxing pose to work through some contractions. I appreciate the practice we're getting, but it is a let down when we still haven't met our baby. It's also tiring. I'm hearing good things about chili and pineapple though, so we'll see! Next week the due date comes. Will baby?
Friday we see the midwife, maybe she'll have something useful to tell us!


Monday, September 24, 2012

Pregnancy Tips

Couch Consultation with Miranda

What has worked, what I would do differently 1-9.5 months, and funny tips you don't need to think about until it happens to you
(not in any certain order)
1. Pre-natal yoga. Do it! As soon as you feel up to moving around either find practices online, check netflix, borrow from the library or friend, whatever you have to do to get your hands on a practice or class, do it!

2. Start raspberry leaf tea in your second trimester! Uterine muscles will be nice and toned and it's supposed to help with contractions! (2 cups a day brewed for 10-15 minutes in 2nd trimester, 3 cups a day in 3rd trimester. I've used the Traditional Medicine brand.) I plan on drinking this tea post-pardom as well to help with my menstrual cycle. It can also help with breast milk. On the note of tea, once my milk supply is in, I may drink Mother's Milk tea also by Traditional Medicine to keep supply going.

3. As your belly grows outward, suddenly objects become strangely closer to you... watch how close you stand to the stove, belly burns aren't cool. (am i the only one who had to figure this out through experience?)

4. You don't need maternity underwear, maternity underwear is stupid. I love hanes hipsters, one size bigger than pre-pregnancy size.

5. When boobies start blossoming, do yourself a favor, get a sleep bra. Even if its a cheapy bralett.

6. Cocoa butter, or any stretch mark cream of choice, get it and start using it as early as 8 weeks. Palmers concentrate formula worked wonderfully for me. I just got my first stretch marks at 37 weeks, not as dramatic as what I've heard they can be, and I think they would get better quicker if I hadn't switched to the milkier massage lotion.

7. Definitely pay attention to what you're eating! I have had an interest in the foods I put in my body for years, but my knowledge about nutrition increased the more pregnancy literature I obtained. You can have fulfilling, delicious foods that are perfect for building a healthy baby and keeping you from over-gaining. Unfortunately, around 28 weeks, maybe? I started taking it easy on myself and over-indulged. Once you start, it's hard to get back on track. Now close to the end, the bulk of my weight gain is happening all at once. Make good choices, develop good habits!

8. Find ways to keep wearing clothes you already have. Towards the end I'm certainly finding fewer options, but all the way through there were definitely non-maternity options that stuck it out with me. Before getting married I decided I would buy some pieces that seemed would go the distance at least in early pregnancy (just in case we started a family). Full skirts, Tops that were longer and full, dresses with empire waist with tucks/gathers through the skirt... also, tank tops have the amazing power to stretch! Dots and Old Navy ribbed tanks have really stood by me. If you have time to plan your pregnancy, I would recommend picking up some similar pieces for your wardrobe. I would encourage anyone to get maternity leggings, however. Very helpful when skirts and dresses get a little shorter. When regular sizes get snug, go up a size and look for flattering tops, dresses, and skirts at consignment stores, or places like Old Navy that have great prices on items you can wear pregnancy-post-pardom.

9. Heartburn is going to happen. The scientific reason: Uterus pushes stomach up, way up, just like it pushes the heart to the side and moves your lungs out of the way. With your stomach getting higher up, the acids are closer to your esophagus. Also, the pregnant body is full of relaxin which helps the joints, pelvis, and back loosen up to prepare for the baby to descend. Relaxin slows down the process of digestion so food doesn't break down as quickly, which is why at night (and any other time throughout the day) it can be an extremely painful time for mamma's to be. Just like we've all been told all the time, several small meals throughout the day can make a difference. It will be easier on your system to digest than one or so big binge session. Also, sleeping with your head slightly elevated, two pillows under your head, and on your left side, can make it difficult for the acids to come after you, acid doesn't want to travel uphill. Sometimes all the preventive actions still don't totally eradicate the problem, chug the milk! Be careful of taking too many tums, you can have a build up of calcium which will block absorption of iron. I'm not a doctor, but I bet it's easier for our bodies to break down natural milk.

10. Whatever you do, and I'm not perfect at it, try and enjoy the experience. At the very least, appreciate/respect the amazing abilities of your body and the blessing of growing a whole new life.


Thursday, September 20, 2012


It's been quite a while since we did a weekly bump photo! Now that we have a camera again, let's see where I'm at currently and then do a quick recap on how much we've grown in 9.5 months!

SO here we are at all but 38 weeks! Look how we've grown! Baby is a low-rida these days. He is still very active, but movements have changed into bigger, slower, longer movements versus the short, fast bursts of earlier weeks. We're so ready to meet this active little boy! And with all of his clothes washed, folded, and sorted by month, I'm ready to play dress up with my little baby! Papa is ready to love, snuggle, amuse, and see his little boy swinging and bouncing in the cool kid furniture/toys we've been given!
 *What I wore... dress/; belt/kohls; leggings/motherhood; shoes/walmart

Past Bump Updates
Look familiar?? Love how this dress has been with me from skinny, single days through 9 months of pregnancy!

  Where my bump first made an appearance! I thought I was getting "huge"!

Aww!!!! Shortly after conception, my little sesame seed :-)
Look how skinny! Such long hair! I kind of miss doing the side braids... ok, and being 135lbs with a flexible torso!

It will all be worth it though... Praise God for babies. Can't wait til I really know what all that means!!

14 days til "D-Day"! Will I make it? will he make me wait til 10.5 months? If he's going to make me wait, I think he should come 10/11/12. Anyone have any guess dates for me??

We just enjoyed a lovely cup of homemade hot cocoa! I've been so wanting chocolate alllll day! (that's most days though, pregnancy or not). Baby seemed to enjoy it! Jumping around like a crazy little jumping bean!


Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Self Talk

Before getting into the topic at hand, baby update: 37wk prenatal checkup today. Guess weight for babes is 6.8, he is in good position for delivery, heartbeat seems fine, mama and papa have tdap and mama has the flu vaccine (for the first time in her life.)
In a sermon a few weeks ago we learned about self talk and how that can be detrimental to one's overall outlook on life. Apparently we can hold a conversation in our minds at the rate of 1500 words per minute. Especially when we're upset. I can totally testify to this possibility. I have held on to incidents, comments from various people, and situations for years, and every once in awhile when I'm doing dishes, laundry, showering, getting ready for bed, pretty much anytime that it's quiet and my thoughts have a chance to catch up to me, I launch into a huge conversation with myself, which is pretty much delayed retaliation/replies to things that have upset me in the past.

The following is in an effort to clean out my mind. This is a dump of a few things I would say to those who have frustrated me in the past, recent and distant.

compliments of google images
From Sister-in-law 1 upon announcing our engagement, "This is so irresponsible! How well do you know her?"
That cut deeply. She had talked her bro up for over a year, introduced us, had been my friend, supposedly best friend for two years, and now I'm some stranger that is a mistake to marry? We did get engaged 1 month after dating, but we had talked as friends for about a month before our first date, during our dates, phone conversations and visits we didn't waste time with small talk or shallow banter. We got down to the nitty gritty, we were sharing our real selves. He's told me many times from the start he tells me more about himself than family and more than even his best friend knows. I was equally open with him. Before "jumping" into the engagement, we knew we were getting serious and decided to seek guidance from an elder at church and his wife. We wanted to be sure we had thought about the hard stuff, we gave them a 3 day heads-up and had them think up questions amongst themselves to ask us. They respected our approach, did not give us a break on anything, and thankfully a few things they brought up we had previously considered on our own. His family was not willing to give us any benefit of doubt that we used our heads when planning for our future, or that we would even try to make a plan. How about instead of just accusing us of being immature and irresponsible, you respectfully ask a specific question regarding a specific issue on which you would like more ifnormation? That's their downfall, they don't have rational conversations. They just explode with a bunch of irrational, ignorant accusations and then say we're the ones who "never tell them anything, never communicate." Got to tell you, exploding at people may be a form of "communicating" but it is certainly not EFFECTIVE communication.
 I love what the couple said to us after the "inquisition" "Some people can date for 7 years and be ready to divorce after 5 months of marriage. Some people married for 30 years don't know anything about their partner any more. What you need to decide is no matter what life hands you, if you're in some horrendous accident that deforms you and prevents you from performing all your spousal duties, will you still be able to look into each other's eyes and say 'this is my spouse, I am bound to them, will take care of them, be faithful, and love them." It was a very serious moment, a question we each considered carefully and decided though it would be unimaginably hard, we would do just that. The other point they made, "It's not all about how long you've been together and how well you may know each other, it's about turning to each other and promising to each other you're committed to each other, to the marriage, and no matter what, you will work together." I've seen us do that on the regular. We're in this for the long haul.
From sister-in-law 2, Offended that she wasn't consulted before David proposed, declaring she didn't even know me. This has ALWAYS BURNED ME UP!!!! I went to church WITH HER for at least 2 YEARS, had tried specifically to talk to her just because she was my friend's sister. I had TAUGHT HER SON'S BIBLE CLASS and had tried to talk to her when she picked her son up from class just because it seemed polite to know your students parents. I had ALWAYS been snubbed by them. She had a chance to know me on several occasions before David ever came on scene, if she didn't know me, it's not by any fault of ours. We were coerced into attending a Halloween party shortly after we were engaged, we thought it would be a good chance to make up for our "infractions" even though such a gathering wasn't really our thing. We hardly knew anyone who was going. We were there for half an hour before the sisters showed up. They walked right past us to a table. We went to the table to say hi, sister-in-law 2 NEVER turned around! She kept her back to us and when David in a jovial way said, "This is Miranda!" She barely turned her head and in an ugly way said "Well it's a little late for that now!" Well! I guess so, after all she didn't want to talk to me when she had the chance for years before, why bother now?
Same sister-in-law: mad at David for not being a bigger part of her children's lives when I came into the picture. 1. Her kids have a loving devoted father. He coaches their soccer teams! He's more nurturing than she is. He cooks for the family. If she didn't have a father for the kids I could totally seeing wanting your brother, their uncle to be a bigger male role model in their lives. 2. Being upset that when David was in their home town (we always had a long distance relationship) he only hung out with me (we could only see each other one, sometimes 2 days a week, only for the weekend) and he never came to the kids games. Well, she never tried to talk to David, even at church, even after we married, she continued to snub him. How is he supposed to go to a game he isn't invited to or told about to begin with? How can he ask for this info when she ignores his attempts at conversation?
Same sister-in-law: I at first took it upon myself to mend bridges I thought I had the power to mend. I tried to set up a little dinner for one of the weekends I would be in town. I had heard she was questioning my competence as a woman and as a marriage potential due to how "young" I was... a question came up "Does she even know what marriage is about?" OOOOHHHH NO! She did NOT! I had always been vastly interested by anything and everything beyond my years. Already pursuing political issues at 12, making a binder full of marriage, family, budgeting, and healthy lifestyle information and advice from the time I was 16, always hanging out with those well beyond my junior because from the Bible it talks about how the wise seek out council from their elders. You bet I didn't want to be a fool! I had already lived on my own at this point for 6 years. I paid for my own schooling and all my living expenses, I had to work hard to be independent, but independence is what I wanted, and not in the rebellious teen way that stomps her foot and demands to be treated like an adult. I sought independence by finding areas where I could take on responsibility.
 I just could never get over such inconsiderate, truly ignorant suppositions about someone they were never willing to try to get to know. SO, I wanted to give them another chance. I wanted to put myself out there and let them see who I am and what I'm made of. I was turned down flatly through another sister, sister-in-law 2 couldn't even contact me directly. Sister-in-law 1 (who revels in, and is always in the middle of everything) let it be known that it was just "too soon, and there is no way sister-in-law 2 would be up for something like that."
Well, it wasn't a week later, sister-in-law 2 contacted David and told him she had "some things she wanted to discuss with [me], and could [I] come over at such-and-such a time." I told David flat out, "no." It wasn't right to be approached that way. I offered to have a visit with them, I would not be ordered into an interview and dressing down by his sister. I'm THE GIRL!!!! I get PROPOSED to! My family gets to question THE GUY!!!! I decided I did not have to prove my worthiness to THEM! Finally David understood the oddness (to say the least) of the situation, and he respected my not going.
I just have one more thing to add here, his family has THE MOST difficult time with understanding, accepting perfectly traditional, perfectly right forms of etiquette in so many situations! Just like demanding they should be consulted on who David wants to marry, getting their permission to propose; the order of weddings; invitations to dessert (YES! People can invite people over for just dessert!); so much more! I could probably write a book.
Sister-in-law 3... oh could i go on here! Her inconsiderate comments during wedding plans, her personal feelings about so many things, over-advising in wedding plans when David and I were doing a completely different type of wedding. The worst offenses from her though come with the baby. When we let her know we were expecting her response "You guys are kind of rushing things aren't you? Miranda is still pretty young." WHAT?!?!?! This is prime baby-making time y'all! And hello... our family, our choice. We WANTED this!!!! I do not go for waiting til I'm 30. I'm married, I don't have to wait, I will have my eggs fertilized now please. Ever heard of keeping your opinions to yourself and just congratulating people for their happy moment???
THEN the baby shower debacle. We were blessed to have a friend who wanted to throw a shower for us. She encouraged giving her addresses of anyone and everyone we could think of. We most definitely included the sisters who live in our area. Apparently even though all invitations get mailed out on the same day, not all invitations will arrive at the same time. Our dear friend assured us all invitations went out. Well sisters 1 and 2, instead of addressing David directly, per their usual, they involve sister 3 with their complaints and she takes it upon herself to dress David down in text (they only know how to communicate through heated text messaging it seems... also very annoying). It went from one innocent, late invitation to another sister (to a party date she had already made other plans for any way) to David cutting his whole family out of his life. EXCUSE ME?!?! We send everybody birthday cards, kids, mom, and grands get presents, for sister 1 I took it upon myself to plan birthday celebrations 2 years in a row, only for my own to be forgotten by everyone. We don't get thanked most of the time for our card or gift efforts. Aside from yearly obligations, I had begun sending semi-regular email updates, we sent a Christmas letter last year, do we get any response from anyone? NOPE! I decided not to waste my efforts. They NEVER volunteer info about their families, they don't contact us expect for instances like this when they feel like we've committed some huge grievance. Guess what, I have a lot of things I have to keep up with in our own lives (UHM can we say pregnant for the last 9 months and still growing a child???), I don't need to waste efforts on a garden that refuses to grow. Thank you very much. Their rules don't apply to them. I don't want to live by their check list and be forced into checking in with them like a student on a roster in class. They live their lives uninterrupted, why can't they let us live in kind?
There will have to be a part II. I need a break. People are crazy. Time to fold laundry!!! Yay, lovin' clean underpants ;-)



Monday, September 17, 2012

Baby Showers!

First, let me just tell you how excited I am to be 9 months (37 weeks) pregnant! Baby can come anytime and he'll be just fine :-) according to the he is the size of a watermelon, still gaining an 1/2 ounce everyday, practicing his swallowing, breathing, and sucking his thumb, and making his first little poo (meconium)! It's hard to believe I've been pregnant this long. Let me tell you, these last few weeks are not getting any easier. So BIG, so awkward to maneuver my body, laying on either side just makes my belly hurt, like the skin and muscles rub over the baby creating some kind of bruise or something. Still getting plenty of contractions and braxton hicks, but nothing turning into the real thing yet. We're definitely excited to meet the little guy and we're so thankful everything is ready for him, thanks to so many wonderful people!!

Friday night after work, I went home and picked up David then we went back to work to meet the co-workers for pizza and cupcakes! They were all so sweet! Little baby clothes, baby accessories, lots of great gifts to welcome baby! I wish I had pix from the event, but my camera has been MIA :-(

Sunday afternoon the church ladies had my fourth and final shower! I cannot believe I've had so many showers, so much baby stuff from so many extremely generous people! Our breast pump, stroller, swing, high chair, and sling have all been provided by friends! Not to mention TONS of baby clothes, board books, touch and feel books, pacifiers, diapers, dishes and spoons, just everything. It's overwhelming to have so many people providing for our baby. At the beginning of this pregnancy David and I had figured there wouldn't really be anyone around to help us out, we were fine with that, we're used to providing for ourselves. We made plans to try and get what we needed a little bit at a time. Now, right towards the end, we're bombarded with more than we need! God is good :-)

Cell phone pix compliments of the lady who made the AWESOME strawberry shortcake for my "church" shower. My fav dessert!

All the lovely hostesses!
I got to bring that super cute monkey with balloons home! He's so soft!
I just have to say, there are so many people going through so much in their own lives, they have plenty of things they need to provide for themselves and their families, yet they have made a point to shower us with so much for our little one! I'm just extremely humbled by the generosity and at a loss as to how to show my gratitude. And how awesome is this for a problem? Ready to stop getting gifts because you're tired of putting things away? ;-)
Praise the Lord ya'll, He is good!

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Baby Trial Run

So far so exciting this morning. A dear friend from church has helped us alot so far getting ready for our baby. She did everything from lend us her spare bobby and bumbo, to buying us a second hand breast pump! So when I heard she was having trouble finding childcare for this week, I was excited to have the opportunity to help out along with another friend. This morning David and I are watching 9 month old baby boy, who has a very difficult time being separated from mama. First time watching babies since I've been super-prego, we're looking at it as a good taste of what we'll be living with soon.

Poor little baby just screamed his lungs out for the first hour of being here. He didn't like his toys, books, or walker. Thankfully, his mama left her stroller here, for a blissful two turns around the neighborhood little boy calmed down and even started to enjoy the toy. As soon as we got him in the living room again he totally freaked out! I think it's because he remembered that's where his mama said goodbye.

It was soon time for his nap and thankfully he is good at falling asleep, I think being in his pack n play, and being covered with his blanket is the only thing that has made him feel secure all morning. We're getting to try out our baby monitor while he sleeps, so all is well now!

Baby cries like that just break my heart, he is just a little young to understand everything will be ok and his mommy will be back for him. *Crossing my fingers* for my friend who is taking the afternoon shift with the little guy!

Thursday, September 6, 2012

To be Pleasing and Acceptable

Continuing from my last post, Thoughts on Job, I wanted to post a few thoughts from Sunday's evening sermon on finding out what is acceptable and pleasing to God.

If you look in the Bible at Ephesians 5:10-21 you'll find a convenient list of what God finds acceptable and unacceptable.

“and try to discern what is pleasing to the Lord. Take no part in the unfruitful works of darkness, but instead expose them. For it is shameful even to speak of the things that they do in secret. But when anything is exposed by the light, it becomes visible, for anything that becomes visible is light. Therefore it says,

“Awake, O sleeper,
and arise from the dead,
and Christ will shine on you.”

Look carefully then how you walk, not as unwise but as wise, making the best use of the time, because the days are evil. Therefore do not be foolish, but understand what the will of the Lord is. And do not get drunk with wine, for that is debauchery, but be filled with the Spirit, addressing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody to the Lord with your heart, giving thanks always and for everything to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, submitting to one another out of reverence for Christ."

You can put your list together from this passage, verse by verse:
Loving like Christ
Walking as children of light
Expose darkness
Be wise
Be filled with the Spirit
Using every opportunity to do good

Filthiness/foolish talk
Crude joking
Sexually immoral
Unfruitful works of darkness

I loved this closing thought taken from Philippians 4:6; Galatians 5:15; James 2
"The Word of God reveals us to ourselves as we really are; once we see who we are, we must do what pleases God."

I would love to hear your thoughts on these verses and lists!

*Teaser... We had a maternity photo shoot a couple weekends ago, pictures to come!


Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Thoughts from Job

Job 28:28 "Behold, the fear of the Lord, that is wisdom, and to turn away from evil is understanding."

I read the above verse several nights ago, slowly I am re-reading the Bible through. Since I've been far enough along in pregnancy for Baby to hear me, I've read aloud to him. Hopefully this is helping him develop, but it's definitely helping me remember and pay more attention to what I'm reading.

When we watch morning news shows (Today, GMA, etc.) there is often talk about being business savvy, financially fit, keeping up with latest trends from fashion to what the most popular searches are on Yahoo. What I'm getting at here is these topics are what media, the world, and even myself from time to time, value as important areas in which to be well-versed. This Job passage simplifies things for us. True wisdom comes from "fearing the Lord." I take this to mean trusting Him, knowing what is acceptable to Him for us to do in our lives, obeying what we know He says is right. True understanding comes from "turning away from evil". Sometimes it's blatantly obvious what is evil, other times we have to use our common sense to distinguish what would go against God.

I know how easy it is to get caught up in all manner of complicated schemes and dramas. Getting caught up in all these different areas of "importance" can cause undue stress, anxiety and distraction. If we practice these simple truths of fearing the Lord and turning away from evil, we will be all we need to be and have the wisdom and understanding necessary to navigate more peacefully through our daily grind.

Hopefully tomorrow I will post some points from Sunday's lesson about how we know what is pleasing to God.

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