Big Bed Transition: 2 Months Later

March 29th, 2010

Has it really only been two months?

It was a rough couple of weeks, but eventually we started seeing a light at the end of the tunnel. That helped us tremendously because we knew that if we could get her down once, we could get her down again. Eventually.

And we did…Eventually. Read the rest of this entry »

Week 26: Checkup++

March 10th, 2010

Week 26 was a big one for both Elliott and me. Our monthly doctor’s visit included not only routine testing and “howre you doing?” chat with the doc, but a sonogram and a standard 1 hour glucose tolerance test. How’d we do? Elliott passed with flying colors. Me? Not so much.

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Where the Heck Did My Second Trimester Go?

March 2nd, 2010

Pregnancy math is a weird thing. I always have “trouble” with date math to begin with since something that is “a week from today” can be considered both 7 and 8 days away (or even 6 if you want to count just the days between today and a week from today). Pregnancy terms make it worse. “Everyone” knows you’re pregnant for 9 months, even it’s really 40 weeks. But the first two weeks don’t count because you’re not pregnant, and the next two hardly count because you’re not late yet, so sometimes you can be almost two “months” into being pregnant before you realize that you are. Which means that 20 weeks, while mathematically the half-way point, doesn’t hardly feel like it and makes the second “half” seem to take extra, extra long.

And let’s talk about that “week” thing, shall we? People always ask how many weeks along you are. It’s tough to answer. I get emails from various sites on a near-daily basis giving me updates on how I might be feeling, what fun new complications being pregnant may have recently caused, how the baby’s growing, and of course, how I should invest thousands of dollars in cord blood banking and start stocking up on diapers right away. They all have a different idea about what week I’m in, even though i’ve given them all the same due date. How do you define when a week starts? I know that on Friday, I will be at 26 weeks, meaning that I’ve completed 26 full weeks of being pregnant. Today, however, most everyone agrees that I’m “in my 26th week”, even though I’m really “at” 25weeks and 5 days. Some sites started me on “week 26″ emails as early as last Saturday (25w1d). Some seem to wait until you’re in the middle of the week (as if the 26th week extends from 25w4d to 26w3d.

Is any of it the end of the world? Of course not. So why am I ranting about this?

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What’s In A Name?

February 6th, 2010

We’re having trouble finding a middle name for Elliott.

Who’s Elliott, you ask?

Oh, right. That’s the name of the fetus formerly known as Squirt. We kind of love the name, and in struggling for a good middle name to accompany it, we’ve pretty much ruled out the possibility of scrapping it and starting from scratch. I call him Elliott more often than I call him Squirt, and any number of “we’re keeping it to ourselves for now” decisions have been ruined by my off-handed “Whatcha doing in there, Elliott?” remarks when he starts wiggling around.

There’s only one problem with his name: finding the right middle name to accompany it. Right now, “Michael” is in the lead, but it’s a default “I guess that’ll work” sort of lead. That’s lame. Nobody wants to tell his 4th grade class that he got his middle name because his parents couldn’t be bothered to try harder.

Besides the obvious “initials that spell trouble” issue, Elliott has a few more complications.

Elliott’s first and last names have 3 syllables each, so a one-syllable middle name is ideal. Two will work if it’s the right sort of two and we’ve discovered that the more clipped or staccato-sounding, the better. Phonically, Elliot flows and the stops, while Stephenson “stops” then flows. If you put to much more “flowing” syllables in the middle, his name sound extra long.

Elliott, with its syllabic density and “fancy French-ness” needs a strong, no-frills middle name. It has to have a similar agelessness as well. Cole or Jacob might sound okay otherwise, but are just too trendy to pair well. (Yes, I’m aware Jacob may be the oldest name ever, but it’s super-hip right now, so no).

We’ve entertained both “Ryan” and “Robert” as middle-name candidates and they pass both the “sounding good” and “no bad initials” tests. The problem is that we either are the people who name their children after family members or we aren’t, and we don’t think we are. Plus, when we’re being extra cross with Elliott, nobody wants punish someone else’s names. “No family name” rules out other decent candidates like “Paul,” “Richard,” “Arthur,” and “Alan” as well. And while we’re at it, that means close friends, too. “Mark” and “James” are other likely-but-inelligable names.

We briefly tried to be entertaining, figuring if we couldn’t find something that fit, we could find something that was at least entertaining or interesting. We looked at just initials. Ryan suggested a number, possibly the day he’s born, and then spelling out the number for the name. “Elliott Twelve Stephenson” just doesn’t work for me.

The greatest idea we had, that’s sadly something I might do to character in a book, but not to my own children, was “spelling” the middle initial. Think about it. If you were the sort of person who liked messing with folk’s expectations, how much fun could you have with this?

“What’s your full name?”
“Elliot Sea Stephenson.”
“What’s the C stand for?”
“What C?”

“What are your initials?”
“E. W. S.”
“What’s the W stand for?”
“Why.”
“??”

It’s an Abbott & Costello routine just waiting to happen! Sadly, I’m sure it would get old before he even understood what we’d done to him. Kinda brilliant though, since no matter which letter you pick, it going to sound right.

Setting all silliness aside, what we need is:

  • a short name
  • low-frills/strong
  • classic sounding
  • not the name of someone special to us (or, naturally, someone we collectively or individually dislike)
  • doesn’t give him any awful initial issues.

That’s not too much to ask is it?

Big Bed Transition: The First Week

January 22nd, 2010

So how is it going, you ask?

Oh. You know.

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I’m a Big Kid Now!

January 18th, 2010

A huge milestone has been reached at our house. Last night was the first night Charlotte slept in her “big girl bed“.

testing it out while the nightstand was being built

It was not without difficulties and very important lessons learned.

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17 Weeks – What A Big Boy Am I!

January 6th, 2010

Wow. What a difference a few weeks makes. In the last two weeks I feel like I’ve become seriously pregnant. The belly looks bigger every day and there’s no question that the little kicks I’m feeling are babe-related. Several times a day (usually after a meal if i get the chance to sit down afterward) he does a little dance letting me know he appreciates the extra fuel.

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Baby Squirt: The Quickening

December 8th, 2009

“Quickening” is such a creepy word. It sounds like something out of a horror movie. It’s something zombies do or when sleeper human clones become aware of their true origins. In reality, it means the moment that a pregnant woman first feels the baby moving around inside her. Come to think of it, that’s pretty creepy, too.

Read the rest of this entry »

First Trimester Recap: Baby Squirt

December 1st, 2009

At 12 weeks, Thanksgiving weekend marks the “end” of the first trimester. The exact end of the first trimester (when the placenta takes over the baby-growing responsibilites) is some time in the 12th or 13th weeks of pregnancy. We’re close enough now, and with everything else that’s going on in the upcoming weeks, it might be January before I get another chance to send an update. Waiting until I feel like I’m in my second trimester to recap the first just isn’t an option.

How are we doing? Just fine, and better every day. The first trimester is my least favorite and I’m looking forward to being free of it. The extra B6 has really taken the edge off the nausea, as has taking 2 progesterone pills at night, instead of spreading them out at 8 hour intervals. That 4pm pill ruined my whole evening. Still, there’s always a slight undercurrent of discomfort in my belly and it takes something seriously tasty to push past that wall. I’ve been struggling to keep my weight “up” this time. Instead of gaining a couple of pounds, I’ve actually lost almost 10. Most of that was due to a bug I caught that left me sick and seriously dehydrated for about 36 hours, but I wasn’t exactly “eating for two” before then. Thanks to a very feast-filled Thanksgiving, I’m only about 5 pounds down from where I was when the pregnancy started. There’s very little doubt that by the end of the Christmas season, I’ll be back on track, if not a bit ahead.

Between all the vitamins, supplements and general meds I’m taking, I’m up to 11 pills a day (6 in the morning and 5 at night) and some of them are mighty beasts. This gets pretty annoying. Also annoying is the continued aversion to garlic-like smells. Eating something with a bit of garlic (or chives or leeks) in it isn’t so bad, but if it’s the only “note” in the air, I can’t handle it. On the flip side, I haven’t had many cravings. I went through a week of loving hamburgers and a night where I inhaled 3 pieces of Long John Silver’s fish, but I haven’t run up against anything as powerful as I experienced last round.

The nausea factor is a bit different this time, too. I think that stomach bug reset my gag threshold. I’m extremely sensitive to even the suggestion of throwing up. In fact, trying to “talk myself out of” being sick has resulted in a couple of close-calls over the past few weeks. In fact, recalling the incidents while writing this section has made me a bit queasy.

The last of my minor complaints that I’m fortunate are my only issues would be my belly. I am in a really annoying spot where none of my clothes fit. Thanks to second-pregnancy belly popping, my “real” clothes became completely useless weeks ago. Normal pants are too tight and normal tops don’t reach to the lower-cut maternity pants. Since I’m just barely getting the true pregnancy bump, none of my maternity clothes fit quite right, and some of them are completely out of the question. I picked up a couple of new pairs of jeans since I had very few non-capri pants last time, and just like my body, they didn’t snap back to “mini-bump” size at the end of my pregnancy. Everything contributes to making me feel fat because everything is just a bit too loose and a bit too baggy. Unfortunately, the only solution is to ride this wave until the belly starts coming in.

That’s about it. Squirt and I have a checkup tomorrow where we might be able to pick up a flu and H1N1 vaccine. I haven’t been actively seeking it out, like I probably should, but that’s how I roll. The biggest difference between this pregnancy and last? How laid back I am about everything. I’m not slacking off, but I don’t have my nose buried in pregnancy books, sites, emails either.

Hopefully next month I’ll have a great sonogram report with some gender-related news!

(mini-disclaimer: don’t use my vitamin/medicine regime without talking to your pre-natal care provider first.)

Party of Four

November 11th, 2009

That’s right! Our happy family of three is about to become a bit bigger. We’ve known for several weeks, but wanted to wait until after the first sonogram to spread the news far and wide. Last Thursday we went to the doctors for our 9 week checkup and it included a sonogram to make sure everything was going well. It was! Squirt, as we’re calling him, looked great with a super-healthy 175 bpm heart rate. “Him” is just a guess at this point, it won’t be until the next sonogram (probably some time in January) that we’ll have a shot at knowing for certain. This is assuming he doesn’t cross his legs like his big sis did.

So….yeah. I guess that’s our news. You can follow all the ins and outs of the pregnancy here, and on a special twitter account I’ve created to keep the pregnancy stuff separate from charlotte’s stuff and my normal account. That way nobody who doesn’t want to be inundated with pregnancy stuff won’t have to be. The twitter account is @baby_squirt, and I’ve been adding to it since before we officially found out we were pregnant (!), so you can catch up if you’d like. I’ll also be adding it to the side of this site, in case twitter is not your thing, but religiously checking this site is. I’m debating adding one of those “how far along is your baby” ticker, too, but they’re just so cheesy.

As for me, this pregnancy is pretty closely mirroring the last. I have low progesterone levels again, so I’m taking a supplement to correct that. While I haven’t officially been “sick”, I think the constant nausea and fatigue is stronger with this pregnancy than last, and it’s definitely taken a toll on my ability to get things done. I don’t exactly have a baby-pooch yet, but my abdominal wall relaxed almost immediately (common in 2nd pregnancies), so none of my pants fit. I’ve been stuck wearing new and old maternity clothes for the past couple of weeks, and it won’t get “better” until I actually start popping for real.

Keep your eyes on this space for more updates on Squirt as well as some much-delayed updates on Charlotte. She turned 2 last week! Can you believe it?