Wednesday, July 16, 2014

23 Weeks

Total Weight Gain: You know what? I'm making an executive decision to cut this question from the list. I hardly ever answer it unless it's the week of a doctor appointment anyway. And since I started blogging this pregnancy, I think I've had maybe one comment. That's not to say that I blog for comments, but at this point this blog is clearly just a journal for me...and I know how much I weigh. I don't need to keep a running count on a blog. Maybe I'll update later in the pregnancy.

Size of Baby: James is the size of a large mango.

Maternity Clothes: Yep, most of the time!

Sleep: I love sleeping and I think I could sleep 20 hours/day right now if I didn't have to take care of my people. 

Movement: I'm feeling my little guy move a lot, and I love it! The other night he was moving a lot and Cam kept trying to feel it but James was playing possum. He's definitely most active late in the evening.

Cravings/Aversions: I'm craving all the bad cupcakes.

Gender: It's a boy!

Mood: I've been very emotional lately. Everything makes me cry! I saw a movie last week that was not even that sad and I cried an absurd amount. We watched a relatively harmless video in Sunday School and I cried like a damn fool. This weekend I spent an hour at lunch with someone and accidentally called them by the wrong name at the end of the meal, and I was so mortified I cried off and on for hours after we left. Yep, I'm the hot mess express. I'm quite certain I'm an absolute joy to be around these days.

Symptoms/Medical Concerns: Still pretty tired and a little under the weather. The Todd clan has been dealing with allergies all week. Feels so weird to be that kind of sick in the summer. 

Still very clumsy. It's ridiculous and pretty comical. At the moment I'm sporting a grease burn on my wrist from cooking that makes me look like I'm into self-harm. There have been many other mishaps this week, but I'll spare you the details. As long as I finish this race with no broken bones and walking on my own two feet, we will be aces! 

This is very random, but I have a weird taste in my mouth all the time. It started in the first trimester and I remember having it with Claire, but it seems to be going on longer this time. It goes away if I brush my teeth, but the minute I eat or drink anything, it's back. I'm sure it's just hormones, but weird!

Best Moment this Week: We picked out a nice crib this weekend. Buy Buy Baby had it in stock so it's already here! I'm really happy with it and can't wait to see it all put together in his room. 

It's also really fun explaining to Claire that she's going to have a baby brother. The other night we were telling her that Baby James was in my tummy and she seemed pretty unimpressed. Then we asked her to say his name and she said something that kind of sounded like James. Next we tried to get her to say "brother" and she said "bubba". Very cute! When we went to pick her up from the church nursery on Sunday, we caught a glimpse of her through the window. Some of the adults were standing over one of the baby cribs and Claire was all up in the mix peering into the crib at the baby. It melted my heart! I can't wait to see my two babies together!

What I'm Looking Forward to: Continuing to work in the baby's room and hopefully picking a paint color sometime soon. We're making slow but steady progress and I look forward to seeing it all come together! 

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

22 Weeks

Total Weight Gain: I haven't weighed this week. 

Size of Baby: Sweet Baby James is the size of a spaghetti squash. 

Maternity Clothes: Yep, most of the time. Still wearing some regular shirts and flowy dresses.

Sleep: It's been better this week!

Movement: I'm feeling it everyday and it's wonderful! A couple days ago I was eating chips and salsa and it felt like the baby was doing flips! Then a few minutes later, Cam was talking to me about work stuff and baby boy was flipping again! So we know he definitely likes Mexican food and the sound of his Daddy's voice! 

Cravings/Aversions: Chips and salsa (see above!) and pickles! I am such a pregnant cliche! ;)

What I Miss: I would love a nice, cold Mexican beer. What's funny about this is I hardly ever drink beer normally. I'm not even a big drinker in general, but I guess having these babies and breastfeeding said babies has made me crave the one thing I can't have! 

Gender: Our sweet little guy...James Strutton Todd!

Mood: Pretty good. If I'm being completely honest, a tad overwhelmed. Going through the closet in the baby's room and trying to figure out where to put all our stuff is overwhelming me a bit. Yes, I'm aware that this is a very first world problem! That closet was packed from floor to ceiling though! I'm a bit of a secret emotional hoarder...I keep stuff boxed up and never even look at it, but when I do eventually go through it, I have a hard time parting with stuff. Cam is the same way...we're funny like that. Also, Claire's starting to show us a little preview of the infamous two year old behavior...she's thrown fits before, but I think we're seeing the beginning of a whole new phase of it. I know we'll get more comfortable with how to deal with it, but right now it makes me feel a little powerless. She's still the sweetest little thing much so that I feel guilty even mentioning her behavior! 

Symptoms/Medical Concerns: Feeling really tired in the afternoons, much more so than a few weeks ago. Between 1-5 pm, I feel like someone has removed all the energy from my body. I'm also having some minor nosebleeding...I remember this happening right around the same time with Claire. 

And this isn't really pregnancy related, but it's worth noting. To make a very long story short, my sister and dad recently discovered they're carriers of a genetic mutation for a disease called hemochromatosis. I got tested last week and found out yesterday that I'm also a carrier. Hemochromatosis can cause your body to absorb too much iron, which can lead to different health problems, many of them involving the liver. Since we're only carriers and not what doctors refer to as "affected", we don't have the disease itself--although it's something that has to be monitored because with age/certain exacerbating factors, carriers can sometimes have elevated iron levels. Thankfully there's an easy fix: you do phlebotomy treatments to basically draw blood to remove the iron from your body. My dad is not at a point where he has to do that yet. My sister, being a childhood cancer survivor who had many blood transfusions that would cause anyone to have elevated iron levels, does have to do phlebotomy treatments. I will have my iron levels checked at my next appointment with Dr. Orth. It's unlikely my levels will be elevated. Women are actually at an advantage here: having babies, breastfeeding, and periods cause you to naturally shed iron. 

On my end, the next step will be getting Cam tested. While unlikely, if Cam is a carrier there's a chance Claire and James could actually have hemochromatosis, not just be carriers. If he's not affected or a carrier, there's a 50% chance our kids could be carriers like me. I hate that there's a chance my babies will ever have to concern themselves with this, but they're actually at a huge advantage since we would know from such a young age that we need to be aware of this and monitor it. Doctors call this the "good news disease" because there is an easy solution. The danger is for people who go their whole lives without knowing and then develop problems because of long-term iron overload. In fact, since this is coming from my dad's side, we suspect my grandfather may have been affected, not just a carrier. This could explain how he developed the liver cancer "of unknown origin" that took his life. Makes me sad. :(

Whew, that was a lot! As they say, it's always something. From broken ankles to freaky placentas and genetic mutations...we always keep it interesting! In all seriousness, we are all generally healthy and for that we are so thankful.

Best Moment this Week: Just feeling little Jamesie move around a lot! If he's anything like his sister, he will be a mover and a shaker from the get-go! Can't wait to see his sweet and precious face in just 4 months!!! 

What I'm Looking Forward to: Going crib shopping this week! 

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

21 Weeks

Total Weight Gain: I've gained 12 pounds total.

Size of Baby: James is about the size of a carrot!

Maternity Clothes: Yes, although I'm still wearing my regular t-shirts a lot. 

Sleep: Not great...I'm having trouble getting to sleep lately. 

Movement: Started feeling it almost everyday this week...exciting! At my anatomy scan and today when my doc found the heartbeat on the doppler, he was moving a lot! I think I'd be feeling a lot more without this dang placenta in the way! ;)

Cravings/Aversions: Sweets! During my first trimester, eating was akin to a force feeding experience. Now that I'm feeling so much better, I've been enjoying having my appetite back and indulging a lot these past few weeks. Trying to reign things in a bit and work on eating less sweets and carbs, and more protein! 

What I Miss: Nothing at the moment.

Gender: It's a sweet baby boy!  

Mood: Good!

Symptoms/Medical Concerns: I had my doctor's appointment today and it went well! Baby's heartbeat sounded good and strong on the doppler. The second trimester is lovely and I'm definitely a fan! :) I've been more tired this week, but overall I'm feeling really good! I'm starting to notice new stretch marks popping up on my stomach, as well as the melasma patches I get under my eyes when I'm pregnant. 

At my anatomy ultrasound a couple weeks ago, the tech found that my placenta has an additional lobe. It doesn't sound like it's anything to worry about (although I did just make the mistake of googling it and got a little freaked out!!), but it's definitely good for them to know about ahead of delivery. Today my doctor talked to me about how they have to do something at delivery to ensure that this extra part of the placenta is delivered. She said an epidural really helps in this situation because it can be painful. If I have an epidural, I sure hope it works this time!

Best Moment this Week: Cam and I have started the process of getting James' room cleared out so we can prepare his nursery. His room has been our guest room/office so we're going to have to get very creative to find a place for all our stuff. We still have a long way to go, but it always feels good to get started! I got a couple projects done that I've been wanting to do for months. I'm definitely nesting, and it feels so good to get things organized around the house! I can't wait to get to the fun part of decorating for our sweet baby boy!

What I'm Looking Forward to: Celebrating the 4th and enjoying the long weekend!

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

20 Weeks

Total Weight Gain: I'll find out next week at my doctor's appointment. 

Size of Baby: Baby James is the size of a banana!

Maternity Clothes: Yes!

Sleep: Bad, bad, bad! Between our cat acting like a psycho all night and my acid reflux, sleep has not been plentiful. Friday night I had a pretty bad acid/choking episode and slept a grand total of 3 hours between 6 and 9 am...brutal!

Movement: Maybe a couple flutters but not much else. :(

Cravings/Aversions: Craving sweets! And very thirsty - trying to drink water like it's my job.

What I Miss: Booze. Just being honest. 

Gender: Boy! Sweet baby James!

Mood: Pretty good! Nesting - I have quite a list of projects!

Symptoms/Medical Concerns: Feeling pretty good overall. My feet are sore...when I get up in the mornings my feet feel like I've already been walking around a lot. Feeling a little out of breath at times when I'm leaning down to put Claire's shoes on, etc. 

I finished off my bottle of Diclegis (anti-nausea med) this week. One day recently I forgot to take it and had nausea; but since stopping it fully this week, I've been feeling fine with the exception of a tiny hint of gagging in the morning when I brush my teeth. 

Differences from Last Pregnancy: Right now they're feeling pretty similar. 

Milestones: Reaching the halfway point! The last couple months have gone quickly, but time before that seemed to crawl. Crazy exciting to think that we'll be having a baby in less than 5 months!

Best Moment this Week: Buying some adorable clothes for my sweet boy! It's weird to be shopping for a boy...I'm so used to just automatically going to the girl section. As I expected, you really have to dig for cute boy stuff. I'm pretty picky about boy clothes...I really don't care for the trend of tons of writing all over t-shirts and fake ties. I think it's bizarre to look at a sweet little boy and see "If you think I'm cute, you should see my aunt/cousin/dad, etc" written in bold print on his shirt. Isn't our culture going to inflate a kid's ego enough down the road? Can't we just let them be babies? Anyway, I found several really sweet sleepers and outfits for James...can't wait to see him in them!

What I'm Looking Forward to: My appointment next week!

Here's a halfway point bump picture!

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

19 Weeks

Total Weight Gain: Who knows?

Size of Baby: James is the size of a large heirloom tomato. According to the ultrasound today, he is measuring right on track!

Maternity Clothes: Yes, indeed!

Sleep: Okay. I had trouble sleeping a few nights, but it's been better the last couple days.

Movement: Yesterday, I felt something twice. I always seem to feel things when I'm sitting in the passengers seat in my mom's car and I turn around to look at/give something to Claire behind me. Interestingly enough, at our ultrasound today I found out that my placenta is now anterior, as it was with Claire. This explains why I haven't felt much movement these past few weeks! I guess that's just the way my placentas (placentii? ha) roll! 

Cravings/Aversions: I'm craving sweets! My appetite has really increased in the last week or is growing! When she looked at James' abdomen today, the ultrasound tech commented that our baby boy is definitely not going hungry...haha!  

What I Miss: Can't really think of anything right now!

Gender: It's a boy!! James Strutton Todd! We are thrilled! It will be such an adventure having a little was absolutely adorable seeing Cam with visions of baseball and football with his son in his head once we found out it was a boy!

Mood: Good. Very emotional today, especially this evening. I remember being the same way after we found out Claire was a girl. The whole thing just makes me very emotional! 

Symptoms/Medical Concerns: I'm really in the golden phase of pregnancy. I feel great most of the time! I've had headaches this week, but I think that's related to allergies. The feeling very full at night thing is back this week...I think it's related to my reflux and everything getting pressed together as the baby grows. 

I get weekly pregnancy updates from Babycenter and I remember recently it said I might start being more clumsy at this point in the pregnancy. Well, that was definitely spot on! I dropped my phone on the ground this weekend and it BOUNCED OFF THE CONCRETE into a pool. Cam jumped in the pool very heroically and saved my phone. It's been on rice life support and overall, it's working pretty well. Sometimes it acts possessed and types the letter M over and over, but I'm just relieved it's working at all! I've been dropping other stuff a lot too. As we all know, I was VERY clumsy at the end of my first pregnancy, so I'm trying to watch my footwork very closely from here on out!  

Differences from Last Pregnancy: They're fairly similar right now!

Best Moment this Week: Getting to see our pumpkin on the ultrasound today and finding out we are having a sweet baby boy! We also had a really fun weekend in Sugar Land with Cam's family! Claire has the best time!

What I'm Looking Forward to: Buying some things for sweet baby James to wear and starting the process of getting his room ready to decorate! 

It's a...


James Strutton Todd is healthy and absolutely precious.

What a fun, whirlwind day it has been! We are absolutely thrilled! It will be so fun to have one of each! Our sweet baby James wasted no time today showing us exactly who he was! Everything looks good and healthy, which is wonderful! I don't know why, but I was more nervous about that part of things this time than I remember being last. I just didn't see how we could possibly get lucky enough to have two healthy babies. We are so thankful.

Cam's parents came into town for the day, and our dads were nice enough to watch Claire and Grace so that Cam, my mom, mother-in-law, sister, and I could go to the ultrasound together. Afterward, we came home and shared the news with them, and then we all went to lunch together. It was such a fun and special day!

It was so funny to compare this ultrasound to Claire's!! Claire was demure and very lady-like, keeping her legs crossed for 45 minutes! It took drinking water, going to the bathroom and doing jumping jacks to get her to finally reveal herself! Today, it took less than 5 minutes for James to "show us his stuff"! So funny! Definitely all boy!

There's a tradition in Cam's family of naming a boy James and then using the mother's maiden name as a middle name. Cam's full name is James Campbell Todd, and his dad and grandfather are both James as well. Even before meeting Cam, James was my favorite boy name. We are honored and very excited to carry on the tradition! We plan to call him James. It works out pretty cool that each of our babies will have our middle names. Claire's is Campbell, like her Daddy. James' will be Strutton...when I got married and changed my last name, I took my maiden name as my middle name. I'm glad the Strutton name will be carried on in that way through our boy! A little boy is a whole new adventure for my family, as we are a family of daughters who both had daughters first. My Daddy, the eternal outdoorsman, informed me he was going to buy James a shotgun tonight...ha!!!!!!

It was a wonderful day and we loved having family with us to celebrate! We can't wait to meet James in November!

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

18 Weeks

Total Weight Gain: Still don't know. Honestly, I'm not really obsessing over every pound. I certainly have a limit that I will try to stay under, but regardless of what happens during this pregnancy, I will have a lot of work to do unless this baby comes out weighing about 50 lbs.

Size of Baby: Baby Todd is the size of a bell pepper.

Maternity Clothes: Yep, most of the time.

Sleep: It's been okay. Friday night I had my first acid choking episode of this pregnancy. Ugh. I hardly slept a wink until 6 am. I'm just praying this isn't an ongoing issue like it was during my first pregnancy. My sleep for the rest of the week has been much better.

Movement: Not much this week.

Cravings/Aversions: I've been craving Chinese food and big chewy sweet tarts...not together though!

What I Miss: Not really anything at the moment. 

Gender: We find out in 1 week! I'm so excited!! This topic has been on my mind so much this week...just because our ultrasound is coming up soon and we went to a gender reveal party for some friends this weekend. Honestly I will be really happy either way. I just want a good sleeper this time around. ;)

Mood: Good, excited, content, and productive. Nesting is starting to kick in and it feels really good to not be the lazy slug I was during the first trimester. 

Symptoms/Medical Concerns: I'm in that wonderful part of pregnancy where I feel really good. If it weren't for the growing baby bump, I almost forget I'm pregnant sometimes. If I'm on my feet a lot, they get pretty sore and swell a little, but it's nothing too bad. 

Differences from Last Pregnancy: I feel pretty similar to how I felt with Claire...some people are theorizing that means it's another girl, but who knows? 

I guess the major difference right now is that I'm not teaching during this pregnancy. I cannot overstate how much of a difference this has made for me. Being on my feet all day as a teacher was rough and while I'm certainly busy now, I have much more control over what I'm doing. The school year I was pregnant with Claire was by far the most stressful working experience of my life, thanks to an asshole supervisor who went out of his way to punish me and the other pregnant teacher on my team for being pregnant and needing to take maternity leave. He lasted all of a year at my school. Add in the regular stress of teaching and doing sub plans for maternity leave and it was a nightmare (one I still have actual nightmares about). The swelling and blood pressure issues all of this caused nearly landed me on bed rest. All that to say, it doesn't escape me for a second how blessed I am to be home with Claire this time. I am so so so thankful. 

Best Moment this Week: This weekend was super jam-packed, but it was fun to spend time with Cam, Claire, and our friends!

What I'm Looking Forward to: Next Wednesday!