Friday, July 17, 2015

Macey: 31 weeks

Heart Rate: 130 something :)

Stats: I measured right on track at 31 weeks and have now gained 18 pounds! 

Symptoms: Everything still hurts. And it is hotter than hot outside. So basically I'm staying inside as much as possible, despite my longing desire to be swimming in an outdoor swimming pool while drinking a cherry limeade with extra ice. 

Appetite: I'm starting to lose my appetite again. Nothing except maybe ice cream and chocolate milk sound really appealing. 

Movement: Lots of wiggles going on! I can tell Macey is getting more cramped because her movements are definitely less forceful and dramatic! 

Sleeping: No change from 29 weeks. I still wake up every 2-3 hours despite every effort to stay asleep. My doctor recommended I eat something with a lot of protein just before bed to help keep from getting hungry during the night. Last night I tried peanut butter, but it made me so thirsty that I had to drink something before bed. Tonight I'm going to try eating a Clif bar and drinking as little milk with it as possible. We'll see. I'm totally aware that sleep is hard to come by in late pregnancy, but I am experiencing MUCH MUCH MUCH more sleep disruption than I ever had with Maleah. (Oh, and it doesn't help that Maleah is sometimes the reason I'm waking up!!!) 

Looking Forward To: Having a baby... for real, though! The closer we get, the more absolutely excited I am to welcome another baby. I love Maleah so much (tearing up now...) that I can't even imagine what it will be like to have two sweet girls calling me Mama (where's the Kleenex?)! We have slowly been accumulating baby items and pulling things out of storage and it's just really sinking in that she's going to be here very soon! 

Loving: My super-fantastic husband. Poor Blake is struggling right along with me, but he is trying so hard to help make these last weeks as comfortable and manageable as possible. He always listens when I go on my rant about how uncomfortable I am, he rubs my back to help me get back to sleep at night, and he takes such good care of Maleah when my body just can't! I am so appreciative that he takes an active role in parenting!!!

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Macey: 29 Weeks

Am I allowed to say that I am "over" being pregnant? I mean, on the one hand, please hear me when I say that I completely appreciate being pregnant and am so grateful to be able to experience it again. Trust me on that one! But, on the other hand... the actual being pregnant part is really hard! It's an exciting period of life, but it is very physically demanding and that's the part I'm completely and totally OVER. I'm ready to be exhausted because my sweet girl is here keeping  me up all night. That'll be hard, too, but at least I'll have a cute little face to look at while I'm crying from exhaustion!

With that being said, the end is in sight. We have 11-ish weeks to go before Macey arrives and... frankly, I am not prepared! All this exhaustion has really held me back from getting everything ready. Thankfully I have learned from experience and know she doesn't really need much to start with! We'll see how much we can get done here in the coming weeks!

Heart Rate: 150-something... 

Stats: I think have gained 14-16 pounds so far. I can't remember how much I weighed in the beginning but during my last three appointments I have packed on some pounds! I think I gained 26 with Maleah, so I'm hoping to keep it between 22-28 pounds total this time.

Symptoms: Everything hurts. Is that a symptom? I really think in the past week that my hips have spread (ouch!)! I am waddling around like crazy and I just don't care. It's the only way that feels good to walk! I am really trying to stay positive in these last weeks - honestly it is hard some days! Macey is also laying diagonally, just like her big sister, and last night she decided to swap sides!!! It's very very very very very uncomfortable... so I hope it's just as uncomfortable to her as it is to me so she'll move back!

Appetite: I get hungry. I have to eat. I eat. I get full really quickly. Repeat, repeat, repeat. 

Movement: Little Thumper is still banging around in there, but her movements have changed. She is still way more forceful than I remember Maleah being, but she has calmed down some in the past few weeks. I think she's probably starting to run out of room to continue her wild and crazy punches! Oh! And we felt her have the hiccups for the first time last night! I have been waiting on the hiccups because Maleah started having them much earlier and there has been a time or two when I wondered if she had them, but they didn't last long enough. Last night, she definitely had them. Blake just happened to have his hand on my belly when they started. It was so fun to experience a "first" with him!

Sleeping: I wake up every two hours and consider it a good night if I can get 3-4 hours of uninterrupted sleep. I keep telling myself this is great practice for life with a newborn. Because it is. 

Looking Forward To: Getting some stuff done in preparation for this baby!!! Last night I ordered all of the "first week essentials" that I could think of. Of course I forgot to include Dermoplast so I'll be hitting up the drug store this week to get some! 

Loving: My appointments will be every two weeks now for the next two visits (31, 33, 35 weeks) and then we'll start the weekly visits! I think this is when things get REALLY real!!! Plus I love seeing my doctor so I'm totally happy to pay her a visit more often!

Random Note: Since my last post about our girl at 26 weeks, our family suffered a major loss. My Fred suddenly passed away in his sleep on June 10. I'm still in shock... still processing... which is why I haven't written or said much about it. It's just really hard to believe he is gone - just like that. He loved Maleah so much and he was so excited about Macey. Actually the last time I saw Fred was about a week or so before he died - I convinced him and my mom to pick up a changing table from my cousin and deliver it to our house in the middle of the week because I HAD TO HAVE IT RIGHT THEN to calm my nesting urges! He was always happy to do stuff like that. I absolutely hate that Macey won't get to meet him and experience his love. 

Thursday, June 18, 2015

Maleah at 2

I suppose with all the buzz about baby Macey, I have neglected to keep track of Maleah's development recently! Having a two-year-old is definitely an adventure - I never really know what to expect with her. She keeps us on our toes and keeps us laughing! So, I think I owe it to her to provide a little overview of what her life is like at nearly 2 1/2!

     At her two-year check-up, Maleah was 24 pounds, 12 ounces and 34 inches tall. I imagine she's around 26/27 pounds and maybe 35 inches tall at this point. 


     I love how independent Maleah is - and she loves it, too! She's definitely in the "I do it myself" phase! We try to let her do what she can on her own - I love seeing the look on her face when she does something difficult by herself! She also LOVES to help. She wants to help us do all sorts of things - cook, sweep, mop, fold laundry, get the mail. I know she'll be a great help once Macey is here!
    Physically, Maleah is becoming much more coordinated. She can run, jump, climb, throw the ball (and sometimes catch it), and is also honing in on those fine-motor skills. She loves to use stickers - and I love that she can now peel them off the page by herself!
     Maleah knows most of her basic colors, can count to thirteen or so, and speaks in complex sentences. She says things like, "Then, I did ____" and "Sometimes we do ____, but today we didn't." I am constantly amazed at how well she communicates! 

Behavior & Discipline
     Maleah's behavior is directly related to her mood. If she's in a good mood, she is generally obedient, sweet, funny, and playful. If she's in a bad mood... yikes! She can be anywhere from overly whiny to flat-out mean! We really try to work hard with her to teach her how to handle her emotions and not take her bad mood out on other people. 
    We use a lot of different disciplinary "techniques" with her - lately one of the most effective is having her stand in the corner with her face against the wall! Thankfully we've only had to put her in the corner a few times and now we can just use is as a warning and she'll straighten up! She did NOT like it! For me, it is sometimes hard to discipline her because I don't want to break her spirit or hurt her little heart. But I have learned that not following through with consequences makes her a brat - and I definitely don't want her to be that, either! So we do what works best with her in order to help her learn her boundaries. 

     Two-year-olds are famous for throwing fits and Maleah is certainly no stranger to a tantrum! It's really annoying when your kid decides to just scream and cry out of nowhere. But, it happens and we move on. We are learning that the best way to handle Maleah's tantrums is to get her in a quiet space (like her room) and let her finish her crying. She has never been a child who is easy to calm - she just needs to get it out of her system. She'll sit in her room and cry and then calm down and say, "Mommy, I'm done crying!" and come out and play! 
     Sometimes she just needs to be left alone to finish her little fit. I am always careful not to call this a "time out" or act as if it is punishment - but rather just that she needs to do her screaming and crying somewhere other than right in front of my face. I read an article the other day that said putting your child in his or her room to cry during a tantrum was essentially telling them that you don't want to be around them unless they are being good (it was encouraging parents not to isolate their child but to comfort and console them). I was like... yes... that's exactly right. I do not want to be around my child when she is acting like a loony bird... the author has obviously never tried to console my child while she's screaming - it only makes it worse! To each their own...

     Maleah's eating habits have been changing slowly since she turned two. She is definitely starting to turn the corner into bland-land. It is not unusual for toddlers to prefer bland, "safe" food over the yummy flavors they enjoyed as a baby. I am not really too concerned with her new-found preferences. But, I do want to continue encouraging her to try new things and to eat a well-balanced meal. She still likes a wide variety of fruits and vegetables and is still not too fond of much meat. She recently started liking beans - black beans and baked beans being her favorite. Still not a fan of green beans. :) We also have been letting her eat more sweets. Mainly because I want sweets and I'd rather not wait until her bedtime to indulge! 

Potty Training
    Maleah is potty trained!!! Yay! I don't have any tricks or tips or secrets... she was just ready! We didn't have to do stickers or bribes or timers... she just wanted to go! We have been working with her on potty training since late December, but more or less we were just slowly introducing the idea, talking about it, and we've had the little potty out since then so she could try when she wanted. About a five or six weeks ago, we noticed she was telling us every time she peed. She would say "I tee teed in my diaper!". This was the sign that she was getting close to being ready. Then, pretty much out of the blue, she started telling us she needed to go before she had gone, so we were able to make it to the potty in time. Then it took a few more weeks of getting her to ask to go consistently (stopping to go during play time being the most challenging), but she got the hang of it! She has been wearing her big girl undies to school and on outings and she's done really well!

Thoughts on Two
     I'm really happy that we're having a second baby before Maleah turns three. I think she is at a great age to introduce a new sibling - she's had a great run as the only child but not so long that she's totally spoiled. We have been working really hard the past several weeks letting her know what life will be like once the baby is here. I don't pick her up or carry her as often and we're trying to teach her that she doesn't always get her way. It's not easy when you've been the one and only for so long! But I'm hoping starting these things now will help make the transition a little easier.
     With that said, I'm also really trying to enjoy all this one-on-one time we have! I am finding myself saying "yes" to more with her (despite what I said in my above paragraph!) - more play time, more singing, more books being read, more time outside, more dancing like a crazy person in the living room during America's Got Talent... because I know those things will be much harder to do when there's a newborn in the house.
     A little part of me is totally nervous about starting all over with a new baby who will probably be different from Maleah. Just being honest, the newborn/baby phase was not my favorite. It's exhausting and confusing and just when you get the hang of one routine - presto, chang-o - your kid is moving on to something new! Toddler-hood is definitely a challenging phase of life, but I am just generally more confident in what I am doing and I'm enjoying it a lot better than her first 6-8 months of life!