Birthday Update: Five Months!

5 months

Birth Deets
: 21.5in, 8lbs 12oz 
4 month Deets: 14lbs 2oz, 24.8 inches
Height: ? (next appt 6mo)
Weight: ? (next appt 6mo)
Nicknames: Maddie, Miss Me, Bay, babydoll, Little Wee
Exciting Events: The very first Thanksgiving!! Little Miss attended a small gathering with her mom and dad at grandpa and grandma’s house because a snow and ice storm made the roads getting down from the mountain a bit too treacherous!   Santa came a little early to her house and left her an exersaucer '>(this one!).  She loves it!  Good thing Santa came early because this little contraption is a lifesaver when mommy needs to get things done! We also celebrated daddy’s 40th birthday with a cake we made. 
What She Does: She’s taken to waking up once during the night, generally around 3-4am since mommy started back to work.  That allows us 5-6 hours solid sleep and then a short 1-2hr nap before we wake up… guess that’s not too shabby?  We are waiting until 6months to start solids so for now, mommy will settle with waking just once a night. We hear that many EBF babies continue waking every 2hours and I definitely couldn’t do it!  month

We are also still waiting for that first tooth to finally pop.  Poor thing has a chapped chin from all the drooling.  Its seemed to have stepped up a notch in the past few days so we are hopeful the tiny white monster will show soon.  And for those thinking EBF and teeth don’t mix… well she’s already bit because of the teething… not fun!  Miss Maddie is now able to sit unassisted for quite a few seconds!  She generally assumes a tripod like position when she does this but is getting better at balancing every day.  She grabs at most anything and attempts to put it in her mouth even if that thing is twice the size of her head.  Her current favorite toys are an octopus that grandma made out of a ping pong ball and some cotton yarn and an elephant that has 2 different fabrics, a bell inside and crinkly ears. She loves to nap with her '>angel dear owl blankie.  She laughs and squeals and says “mom” and “momma” quite frequently and although she hasn’t picked up on “dada” yet she did say “ohh bah mah” the other day!  Did I give birth to a tiny Dem? I guess only time will tell! merry c


Birthday Update: Four Months!

four monthsOk so this is a few days after Miss M’s birthday but I wanted to wait until after our doctor appointment today!  See? I didn’t forget you all!  So what has little miss been up to?sillygirl

Birth Deets: 21.5in, 8lbs 12oz 
2month Deets: 11lbs 13oz, 23.5 inches
Height: 24.8 inches
Weight: 14lbs 2oz
Nicknames: Maddie, Miss Me, Bay, babydoll
Exciting Events: Miss M had her very first Halloween!  She went dressed as a zebra one day and a ballerina the next and came home with a very impressive haul for mommy and daddy! maddiesmonth Lots of suckers in that haul but hey, we aren’t complaining!  She also went on a trip to Pigeon Forge, TN and ate at Joe’s Crab Shack… well mommy and daddy did.  And probably the biggest thing that happened is… mommy went back to work and little miss is playing with her Grandparents 3 days a week.  More on that…
What She Does: She’s still no longer sleeping through the night and mommy is sleep deprived some nights are a bit rough. Ok, we’ve had it easy up until now and have stocked up on solid 6+ hour stretches of sleep since she was about 6 weeks old but they aren’t kidding when they talk about the Four Month Wakeful Period! She is back to waking up 2-3 times a night for the past couple weeks.  She still prefers standing over sitting, however, she is now able to sit up unassisted for perhaps 5-10 seconds before her noggin topples her over.  We shall soon have a sitter on our hands folks! She always has her hands in her mouth and the drooling is positively disgusting.  Yes, we think she’s working on those little teefers in there!  She will still talk your ear off and this month we have had the joy of hearing her laughing.  It is perhaps the best of her sounds so far.  We hear it most often when she is being tickled or when we are dancing and singing the “no pants dance” or “all the single babies”… songs mommy made up for Maddie’s silly pleasure. She also now cries for me by name… “mama…waaaaahhh….mama…waaaahhhh…mama….” oh joy! 



Birthday Update: Three Months!

3mocollBirth Deets: 21.5in, 8lbs 12oz 
Prior Month Deets: 11lbs 13oz, 23.5 inches
Height: ? No doctor’s appointment this month!
Weight: ? No doctor’s appointment this month!
Nicknames: Maddie, Miss Me, kiddo widdo, babydoll
Exciting Events: Let’s see… Miss M met her great grandpa S!  He came down with Grammy and Grampy K specifically to meet Miss Madeline.  If you remember a while back he was quite sick and had been in the hospital most of this year.  It was so great to see him looking so well!  
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Also?  Mommy and daddy celebrated their FIRST wedding anniversary! To celebrate we took a trip to Maddie’s very first zoo – in Knoxville - and she spent the night in her very first hotel room! She also saw a bit of Knoxville and ate some PF Changs! knoxville1
What She Does: She’s still sleeping through the night and we couldn’t be happier with that!  She still prefers standing over sitting and is getting less wobbly at it every day. She holds her upper body up when you carry her but can only sit up by herself for about a second before tipping under the weight of her noggin.  She’s also starting to notice her hands and feet and just the other day tried grabbing her toes with a puzzled look on her face. She’s been talking (cooing) up a storm and has recently started shrieking like a velociraptor.  I swear I’ve heard her say “mama” a few times but never with a witness… until TODAY!  Today she said “MOM” very clearly while I was on the phone with the hubs! He even paused and said “Did she just say mom?!” Yup! My daughter is clearly an intelligence of genius proportions as well as a dollface. 

Happy birthday baby girl… Mommy and Daddy feel so blessed to have you with us!3 months


You’ve Come A Long Way, Baby!

Four years.  Four years.

It’s been exactly four years since I took my I-131 radioactive iodine treatment for my papillary thyroid cancer. My oh my, how my life has changed since then!

I’d like to say I haven’t given cancer another thought since that day, but truth is, I think about it every day. Every morning I wake up and take my thyroid replacement pill first thing and wait an hour before eating or drinking anything that might affect the absorption.  During my pregnancy my daily dose was changed 5 times to meet the increasing demands from my body and from Maddie. Since her birth 2 months ago, my dose has been changed twice as my body readjusts to my “new normal.” Without this one little daily pill, I would slowly go more and more hypothyroid and eventually my mind and body would shut down.  I would be so screwed in a zombie apocalypse scenario.20130919_123929

I have just one more year until I can say I’ve been cancer free for the magical five years = cured mark.  In this upcoming year, I have plans to undergo a whole body scan once my daughter is weaned.  Once again I will have to go hypo on purpose.  Once again I will have to take some RAI and go into isolation for a short time – this time from my husband and daughter – to protect them from my radioactive self.  Hopefully this time nothing shows up on the scan in my thyroid bed or in my lungs.

If I think on it too long, it terrifies me. So I try not to let my mind go there.  I have a long life ahead of me – including seeing my great-grandkids grow up – and I'm positive there are many adventures awaiting me!


Birthday Update: Two Months!

Happy birthday to our little princess! I can’t believe you have been here for 2 months already – time has gone so fast and yet I almost can’t remember a time when you weren’t here with us.  It seems you have always been a part of us.  We can’t wait to see what adventures await you!


Birth Deets: 21.5in, 8lbs 12oz 
Prior Month Deets: 9lbs 15oz, 22 inches
Height: 23.5 inches
Weight: 11lbs 13oz
Nicknames: Maddie, Miss M, Hungry Mungry Kiddo, Wobble Head Doll
Exciting Events: This month has been much more laidback than last month!  We are still working on unpacking the house after the move and finding the items we need can be a bit of a challenge. The nursery essentials are all set up but we have some decorating items to do in there yet!  Miss M will be in our room for a while yet so there is no rush on those finishing touches!  Other than that Maddie enjoys visiting with her grandparents and watching the tractors pass back and forth on our road! 
What She Does: Sleeps through the night!! Wow this is a big one for mommy and daddy!  Miss M has been consistently sleeping 7-8hrs at night (which is a HUGE deal) for a couple weeks now. She has good head control and likes to look all around but does still wobble a bit.  She tries to sit on her own but because of the wobble she tends to lurch forward or to the side pretty quickly. She also enjoys standing up while mommy or daddy hold her under her arms – she actually prefers this more often than not! She likes tummy time (most of the time) and has fun on her play mat.  Miss M is a bit of a chatterbox – especially when she first wakes up!  She gets her “morning person” personality from her daddy so her morning chats are a bit exhausting for mommy!  Most of all she smiles and smiles and smiles at us which melts our hearts every time.  But then you see her smiling, laughing and talking to the living room ceiling fan or the bedroom “nipple light”… guess she is just making it clear we aren’t as special as we think! DSC03927_thumb2


Birthday Update: One Month!

Wow… how time has flown since Miss M made her debut in this world!  I can’t believe she’s already a month old.  My little peanut has definitely put on weight (official Peds weigh in on Monday!) and is sleeping and eating her way through most days.  She is our joy and… our frustration in those times when she just cries for no reason we can discern at 2am. Mostly she just fills the days with joy and love and a feeling of complete wonder at the awesome miraculous creation that she is! one month

Birth Deets: 21.5in, 8lbs 12oz (7lbs 14oz when leaving hospital, 8lb 2oz at Peds 3 days later)
Height: 22 inches
Weight: 9lbs 15 oz
Nicknames: Maddie, Princess Peepants, Grunty McGrunterson, Miss Me, Hungry Mungry Kiddo
Exciting Events: Aside from the very exciting event of her birthday, Maddie had many visitors from Michigan! The very first weekend she was home, Grammy & Grampy K made an impromptu trip to see their granddaughter.  About a week later, Great Aunt Pat & Great Uncle Jim arrived with cousins Jessa, Eli & Erin.  One day later, Grammy and Grampy K showed up with Aunt Katie and cousin Collin! While they were visiting, Maddie had a Skype date with Great Grandpa Slagter and a few other Great Uncles back in Michigan. She also made the move with mommy & daddy into their very first house!  It made for a very exciting and exhausting month!
What She Does: cries, sleeps, eats, pees/poops… that’s pretty much the run of things these days. Tummy time includes her being able to move her head from side to side and push herself up (head/chest) with her arms. She smiles mostly just randomly but I think I’ve caught her smiling back at me or daddy a time or two. And recently she’s taken to standing up when you hold her, supporting her whole body weight on those tiny little feet!  She has a pretty set internal schedule and let’s us get to bed sometime around 10/11pm gets up around 1:30/2am and then sleeps until around 5/6am – those 3-4hr stretches of sleep can work wonders for mommy & daddy!

Mommy update: I’m healing well and have lost most of the pregnancy weight – thank you breastfeeding! My pregnancy carpal tunnel is mostly gone with just slight numbness in 2-3 fingers on each hand instead of complete numbness in 4!  My wedding and engagement rings fit once again – yay!  It’s a good thing too because the fake bling started turning my finger green immediately after I gave birth! (totally weird!)  We moved to the new house 3 weeks after Maddie was born which was totally crazy (note to self: never repeat that) and we are still living mostly out of boxes because there is barely enough time in the day for me to eat let alone clean and unpack.  (Needless to say picture updates of the new house will be delayed for a bit!)


Hump Day… Birthday!

week 1mWho would have thought that at the same time our Hump Day Bump Day: Week 38 post went live on the blog that we would be in the hospital anxiously anticipating the arrival of our Miss M!?  I’m sure some of you are curious as to the details of her arrival so we thought we would celebrate her 1 week birthday by telling you how she arrived… and maybe have a little bit of cake too!

So grab a piece of cake, a glass of milk or cup of coffee and settle in for the story…4am pre hospital

Early in the morning on Wednesday July 17th, {by early I mean around 4am} I woke up for one of my umpteenth nightly bathroom trips. I was doing my business when I felt something… different… happen down there. I went back to the bedroom to wake up the hubs and tell him I thought that my water had just broken.  He asked me something similar to “did you have a big sploosh all over the floor?!” To which I said no and he assumed I was just overreacting.  I went back to bed but got up about a half hour later and felt another small gush.  After about an hour of debating with the hubs and internet researching if it could be that my waters had broken, we decided we should head to the hospital and find out for sure.  So we got dressed and threw the last minute items in the hospital bags just in case and off we went!

DSC03608We arrived at the hospital, and were directed to the birthing center where I was hooked up to monitors.  I had a contraction here and there but nothing too regular or serious.  I only had a couple that made me pause and start the deep breathing.  The nurse checked me and said she didn’t think my water had broken based on the little amniotic fluid swab test. The doctor came in and did the same test and got the same result but he also checked to see what my dilation was. He said I was at a 3-4 dilation {yay progress!} and then I had another gushing sensation. He said, “looks like you aren’t going home after all!” and then said we would be starting Pitocin because my contractions hadn’t picked up and it had been almost 3hrs since I had felt the initial break.

I was not happy.  Well… happy {and excited!} to know we would finally be meeting our sweet baby sometime soon, but not happy to be starting out with Pitocin.  Since I knew it wasn’t common for waters to break before labor started, this was a scenario I hadn’t even thought through! Also, I had heard contractions that come with Pitocin are especially horrible.  But… I knew there were risks if we kept waiting for labor to start on its own and so we proceeded and moved to our birthing room… with a view!View from birthing room

Once the Pitocin was started, things got going pretty quickly.  At first I was able to breathe through the contractions and rest between them, but they soon went from bearable to coming at me hard every couple of minutes and lasting what seemed like forever. This was around 11am and I hadn’t been checked for dilation progress since about 7am so we thought we still had hours of labor ahead of us and I told my husband I needed the epidural.

Shortly after, I was contracting through the epidural insertion process and begging the nurse to turn off the Pitocin. {she said no btw}  As soon as it took effect I was feeling much better and the nurse came in to check my progress again.  Her eyes got really big and she said “I think she’s complete! Hang on let me check again… ok, now Christina push a little I want to see if I can feel the head… oh.. STOP pushing and don’t do that again! This never happens that fast with a first baby!”  Apparently what none of us suspected was that when I was in the midst of the contractions that wouldn’t stop, I was actually in the transition stage of labor.  If I had known, would I have stuck to our original plan and not gotten the epidural? I can’t honestly say, but it might have been easier to hold off a little longer knowing we were almost there.

Then the nurse told us that the doctor was in a c-section and we had to wait until they were done or close to it to start pushing. Now if I hadn’t had an epidural at this point I think I would have been one furious laboring pregnant lady, but since I had it and was no longer feeling the contractions at all I said ok!  We waited around for about an hour and a half before the nurse came in and said we were going to start pushing.  I pushed for about an hour and our Little Miss was welcomed into the world at 2:03pm.  DSC03649

From waters breaking to her birth we had about 10 hours and just 7 hours from the start of actual Pit induced contractions. What a whirlwind of a day!  In the end we got to meet this sweet little face… and I wouldn’t change a minute of the experience for the world.

DSC03650   DSC03678

Happy one week birthday Miss Madeline!


Hump Day Bump Day: Week 38

week 38How far along? 38 Weeks, 3 Days
Outfit? regular cardi and maxi dress (gotta love maxis!)
Stretch marks/Belly Button? Belly button is getting very close to popping these days but I’m hoping it doesn’t! Stretch marks are still there unfortunately.
Sleep:  Sleeping ok but the hubs says I’ve started snoring like no one he’s ever met so he’s not sleeping well these days.
Best moment this week:  Friday was great because Grandpa was released from the hospital again.  Monday was even better because we heard the heartbeat again (a strong 160bpm) and the carpet installation began at the house! YAY!
Miss Anything?  The feeling in my fingers.. yup its still gone.
Movement: Mostly kicking in my ribs and out my right side. Although starting to feel more pressure right in the middle of my ribcage like she’s pushing it out.
Food cravings: Fruit is still the clear winner here – especially with the hot weather this week!
Anything annoying?: Hand numbness and swelling in my feet. (hubs says they look like Fred Flintstone feet when they are really bad)
Labor Signs? Still 2cm dilated but now 70% effaced, no real contractions but I did lose my mucus plug Tuesday morning. For some that may be tmi.. so I apologize but at least I didn’t post a picture! Yes if you check Google images you will find several… I don’t recommend it.
Mood? Excited, nervous and anxious to meet my daughter.  
Looking forward to:  Labor or the next doctor’s appointment on Monday… whichever comes first!
Worries & Fears:  Feeling a little more prepared this week.  Probably the only worries or fears would be related to us having an unplanned cesarean section.
Weekly Thoughts/Questions: Membranes were swept at our visit this week and the doctor predicted labor to be in the next couple days.. so far it’s Tuesday night and nada other than the loss of the mucus plug this morning.  He mentioned if I don’t go into labor by the next appointment we will be talking a medical induction.  I’m really hoping to avoid that because I’ve heard its horrible and that it can lead to a series of other unwanted/unplanned medical interventions (epidural because of strong contractions, c-section).  But if that’s the route we need to go, we are staying open to it.  The most important thing is for Miss M to be born healthy.


Hump Day Bump Day: Week 37

week 37Health Stats: blood pressure: 120/72, baby heartbeat 152, weight gain ~27lbs

How far along? 37 Weeks, 3 Days
Outfit? maternity shirt and shorts, regular tank
Stretch marks/Belly Button? I think the innie got a bit shallower this week and the stretch marks a tad longer… belly area is ready to evict it’s tenant I think!
Sleep:  Still feeling like I’m not getting great sleep and when I doze off on the couch, the hubs tends to shout me awake because he thinks it’s funny.  Just wait until the crying baby is keeping him up.. paybacks!
Best moment this week:  My doctor’s appointment on Monday because I heard the heartbeat.
Miss Anything?  The feeling in my fingers.
Movement: Mostly kicking in my ribs and out my right side. She favors the right side of my belly.
Food cravings: It’s hot so fruit (watermelon and grapes) and salad seem to be the winners.
Anything annoying?: Hand numbness and the heat
Labor Signs? A few more contractions this weekend but otherwise not too much action.
Mood? Mostly excited these days and a little scared of what is yet to come.
Looking forward to:  The doctor’s appointment next week Monday because they will check on dilation/effacement status again!  Hoping to have made some progress as we get closer to the due date.
Worries & Fears:  Hmmm the pain of labor, if we forgot to stock something for little Miss that I haven’t thought of yet, and that my hands will be permanently numb after delivery. 
Weekly Thoughts/Questions: We attended a relaxation and breathing for delivery class on Tuesday which focused on natural childbirth techniques. It pretty much reinforced info I’ve gathered from fellow moms, the internet, and some books I’ve read and had good info for the hubs as well. It was definitely worth the time and money spent and I’m feeling like we can go in pretty prepared to go natural unless complications arise.  Going to try to stay in this positive state of “millions of other women have done it and I can too” state for the next 18days…or however many it ends up being until Miss M arrives!


Hump Day Bump Day: Week 36

week 36Health Stats: blood pressure: 112/68, baby heartbeat: 150, weight gain ~26lbs

How far along? 36 Weeks, 3 Days
Outfit? maternity shirt and leggings
Stretch marks/Belly Button? Hoping my innie stays an innie for these last 3.5weeks!  And the stretch marks are fairly well contained to the under-bump area.. hoping that stays that way too!
Sleep:  Somewhat better the last week or so.  Still waking up a lot to flip sides, pee, and wake up my hands but I feel like I’m getting some rest now.
Best moment this week:  My pre-delivery pedi on Tuesday! I would have paid her just to do the massage the whole time but I got pretty polished toes thrown in with the deal.. oh yeah and my polish has diamond dust mixed in so its super sparkly and worthy of the special occasion.
Miss Anything?  Hmmm the ability to stay awake much past 10pm?
Movement: Definitely! She punches my bladder and kicks my ribs – meaning she’s also in position!
Food cravings: Not so many these days other than fruits and salads.
Anything annoying?: Pregnancy carpal tunnel – it really blows. In a good moment I only have 2-3 fingers on each hand that have feeling, in a bad moment only my pinkie fingers have sensation.  My superhero cuff splints don’t really help much either.  Only 3.5 more weeks right?!
Labor Signs? Other than a couple Braxton Hicks and being dilated and effaced slightly.. nope!
Mood? Tired, excited, scared, excited… yes I repeated that one.
Looking forward to:  Spending the 4th of July with family, our Dr appointment on Monday, and having 3 days off in a row this weekend.
Worries & Fears:  That Miss M will make her appearance early.  I know the OB said a few days to a week early… ideally I’d like her to stay cooking until at least the 39 week mark. 
Weekly Thoughts/Questions: This week I’ve been working on packing our hospital bags so thinking about what exactly is needed and what is better left at home.  Also, thinking about not having the nursery set up and should we invest in a bassinet?  Also looking back over all my pregnancy/maternity stuff and what I really liked and what I should have left in the store.. I might do a my favorite pregnancy things post in the near future!


Hump Day Bump Day: Week 35

week 35


stats: Blood pressure: 112/80, baby heart rate: 146, weight gain ~25lbs.

How far along? 35 Weeks, 3 Days
Outfit? “regular” dress and tank
Stretch marks/Belly Button? Now that the stretch marks have finally appeared this question isn’t as fun to answer!  Oh but I do still have a shallow innie.
Sleep: Been fairly decent lately but waking up a lot with the numb hands and the urge to pee.
Best moment this week:  Seeing Miss M on our ultrasound on Monday!  Also Friday we got news that my enlarged lymph nodes have mostly disappeared so we are just repeating the ultrasound in Nov/Dec rather than looking at doing a biopsy right now. Also on Friday, my Grandpa was finally released from the hospital and is doing well! That was a stellar day!
Miss Anything? Probably just coffee, sleep and yummy alcoholic frozen drinks
Movement: Still kicking and hiccupping in there
Food cravings: Watermelon and Panera’s Strawberry Poppyseed Chicken Salad – delish!
Anything annoying?: Numb hands, reflux, puffy feet, backache… pregnancy symptoms in general
Labor Signs? Braxton hicks and….. we learned at the doctor’s appointment I’m 2cm dilated and 60% effaced with baby in the head down position!  Really things could happen any day now although hoping for at least 4 more weeks for baby’s sake.  But the Dr said we basically are just waiting for labor to start!
Mood? Tired, cranky, stressed, excited, happy
Looking forward to:  Our next doctors appointment on Monday!
Worries & Fears:  That baby will decide to show up before the house is done.. which by the way it’s done pretty much except for the carpet install.  We have their first available appointment… July 15th.
Weekly Thoughts/Questions: So to go with the fun 2cm dilated and 60% effaced labor anytime news… Currently Miss Madeline is estimated to weigh 6lbs 10oz – which puts her development more like 36wks and in the 89% percentile! My tummy is measuring about 37 weeks. So the doctor says his best guess is we will go a few days to a whole week early and that he thinks she will be 8lbs 8oz at that time. Big but not gigantic thank goodness!  Of course she will come on her own time when she’s ready but our 5 week window is looking more like it might be just 4 weeks. Oh another fun tidbit? The ultrasound tech says Miss M has a head full of hair… I just saw a halo of white around her head but if the tech says its hair, I believe it!  And if all that exciting baby could come at any time news didn’t do it for ya, here is a pic of Miss M’s sweet face (with hand under chin) to make you smile.baby face


Cord Blood: To Bank or Not to Bank?

Since the day I walked out of my OB office with my “Congratulations, you’re going to be a mom!” goodie bag, I’ve been bombarded by pamphlets, emails and contests related to cord blood banking.  Just making my first purchase at a maternity store or registering for baby related items resulted in more pamphlets and emails. (Although they also resulted in free bottles, formula samples, diaper and wipes samples…)  I had no idea what the heck cord blood banking even was – I guess just one of many things that is foreign to a first time parent?

So what is CBB anyway?  Well, cord blood is the blood that is in the umbilical cord and placenta following birth.  It is rich in stem cells which are used in a variety of potentially life saving procedures such as stem cell transplants for leukemia patients.  Sounds like awesome stuff right?  Who wouldn’t want to bank their child’s stem cells as a sort of insurance plan for the future?  Let’s explore that a bit shall we?

First up and the usual reason parents give for not banking is: cost.  The yearly costs vary from private bank to private bank but average somewhere between $100-150 per year.  That is per year until you use it or forever if you don’t.  That doesn’t sound too bad really if it can help your child later in life right? Oh, but you also have the initial costs which include collection, shipping, processing… and those average around $2,000-2,500 at the time of delivery.  You may also incur a fee from your facility and/or OB for their part in the collection process.  At a time when you have poured every extra dime into purchasing things like cribs and changing tables, the thought of another two grand in expenses seems like too much.  Besides, new parents are not generally thinking about the potential health problems that lie ahead for their precious, perfect little baby.

So let’s say you have no problems coming up with the extra money.  Probably still thinking that banking sounds like a really great thing to do for your baby?  Let’s take a look at what the medical field has to say of private cord banking.

The American Academy of Pediatrics have a policy that says there is currently no strong evidence to recommend banking.  Although, they do say it should be considered in cases where a sibling has a condition that could be cured by a stem cell transplant because the chance of a sibling match is greater than one from an unrelated donor.

The American Medical Association tends to agree with the AAP.  They advise that this decision needs to be made well ahead of delivery with consents signed before labor begins so that an informed decision is made.  They encourage the donation of cord blood to public banks but in the case of a family predisposition to specific medical conditions a private bank can be considered.

The American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology doesn’t encourage public over private banking but provides a few good points to think about when considering either option. First thing that stands out is that a child may not even benefit from their own stored cells. If a child is born with a genetic disorder, the child's cord blood cells will also have that disorder programmed in.  This is also true in cases of leukemia which is not generally thought of as a genetic disorder but one’s genes provide the same mutation that caused the disease in the first place.  The other thing that stands out to me is that there is no current data on how long cord blood can be successfully stored and used.

In addition to these statements, there was a study in 2009 published in Pediatrics that points out private banks are rarely used in cases of stem cell transplants for various reasons and few physicians who perform transplants would recommend it.

So if you decide private banking isn’t for you and your family, you still have choices.  You can choose to donate your child’s cord blood to a public bank to possibly help someone else facing a life threatening disease. (public banks are where most stem cell transplants originate from) Or you can choose to do things the old fashioned way and not worry about banking at all – also known as birth, clamp cord, cut cord, done. Or you can choose to delay cord clamping and cutting just a bit.

Why would you choose to delay the clamping/cutting of your baby’s cord? There is some evidence that a delay in clamping helps prevent neonatal anemia and an extra dose of those stem cells stored in the blood going directly into baby.  ACOG has a good article that discusses delayed clamping in both term and pre-term babies. Basically they say more research is needed on this subject but give a couple things to think about.  Currently in term babies, there is insufficient evidence to support more than a 60 second delay in clamping, but within 60 seconds of delay a child can receive extra iron stores to ward off anemia and jaundice.  In pre-term babies, they say the evidence supports delaying clamping because of the anemia prevention and also because it can reduce cases of infant intraventricular (brain) hemorrhage.

Lots of things to consider!  And if you are a first time mom-to-be like me, your head is already swimming with all these new decisions to be made.  I don’t know what we plan to do just yet but doing some research has at least armed me with information to make this decision just a bit easier.

So what did you or are you choosing to do?


Hump Day Bump Day: Week 34

week 34

Ok so let me just say the drawing just didn’t work this week!  That is supposed to be a 5lb bag of sugar… if you look REAL close you can make it out… kind of… ;o)

How far along? 34 Weeks, 3 Days
Outfit? Maternity Dress
Stretch marks/Belly Button? Still an innie… but I am very sad to report that stretch marks have finally reared their ugly streaks. I was so hoping I would be able to get through the whole pregnancy without a mark but apparently my 34yr old skin had different plans. So far its just a few and they are at the very bottom of the bump – hoping that is the full extent.  Although with 6 more weeks of growing and stretching ahead I’m not too optimistic!
Sleep: Still a distant memory and I’m in a constant state of tiredness now.  I also wake up with hands that are very painful and/or numb and can’t even grasp and pull my sheet or pillow at times.  They joys of a thing called pregnancy carpal tunnel.
Best moment this week:  Giving the hubs his father-to-be Father’s Day present!  I made him a Daddy Emergency Kit – complete with everything from diapers and Butt Paste to a mini digital HD video camera.  I know I will probably regret giving him the video camera at some point…
Miss Anything? Mostly just sleep.  Also missing my family this week.
Movement: Lots of rolls, lots of rib jabs and lots of hiccups going on.
Food cravings: Still going on watermelon & cantaloupe.
Anything making you queasy or sick: Stupid reflux when I eat after 8pm… sometimes even if I don’t eat after 8pm – UGH!
Labor Signs? Braxton hicks contractions.
Mood? I’ve been an emotional roller coaster this past week.
Looking forward to:  Still looking forward to setting up our nursery.  The paint really looks great (thanks to the in-laws!) and we just need the carpet and we can move everything into place.
Worries & Fears:  Still need to get that hospital bag packed!  But part of me thinks that once I do my mind will be open to actually having this baby and I’m just not ready for her to come early.  On the other hand, packing this bag is NOT something I want to leave up to the hubs to do while I’m in labor! I would end up with a bag of something like my pre-prego jeans, my kindle, and maybe a pair of flip flops… not exactly the contents I have in mind for myself! Must do… pack a bag or at least print a list of must haves for emergency packing.
Weekly Thoughts/Questions: Last week I mentioned cord blood banking was my question and I have a full post devoted to that topic coming on Friday.  Lately, I’ve been thinking about epidurals.  Our hospital requires a consult with their anesthesia group no matter if you plan on an epidural or not – mine is next week.  I’ve been in the no epidural camp pretty much from the start.  And I don’t like the mandatory anesthesia consult because it feels like it makes it too easy to change your mind while in the midst of things.  Last week in our childbirth class we had a whole section devoted to epidurals and it reinforced my thoughts about not wanting one.  I’ve talked to moms who have done things with and without one and know that I can’t imagine what the pains of labor will be like until I’m right there.  For me personally, it seems the risks and possible side effects outweigh the benefits of pain reduction and I would rather prepare myself with natural pain management options like breathing and relaxation exercises.  And just as a side note, I hold no judgment for mommas from the other side of the camp – you are all heroes and you did what you felt was right for you and your baby.



I had an entirely different post in the works for today but I have some urgent prayer requests instead.DSCN2681If you follow me on Facebook, you have probably seen my posts over the last couple weeks regarding my grandpa.  Shortly after our trip to Michigan for Memorial Day, Grandpa fell and broke his femur.  He’s needed a hip replacement on that side for some time now but he’s 89 years old and stubborn so it was something he was going to do only in his own time.  So he ended up in the hospital for a few days and got the hip replacement and an internal fixation device in his femur to boot.  He went to a rehab and then home and was doing really well with his recovery.

Then one day last week his physical therapist came to the house and noticed something didn’t look quite right with his wound. His orthopedist’s office directed him to the hospital and they did emergency surgery to clean out his wound which was obviously infected.  They also found that had an infection in his blood, otherwise known as sepsis.  They pinpointed the bacteria as MRSA and have been loading him up with appropriate antibiotics. He was getting better.  Then his arm started to swell… he had a blood clot in the arm they were using to administer the antibiotics through the PICC line.  They had to redo the PICC line and in the meantime decided that his wound needed to be cleaned out again.  He continued on antibiotics and a wound vac and started getting better again although his spirits were going down with every setback and delay in getting back home.  This morning we found out the results of the last wound cleaning.  He now also has a gram negative bacteria growing and his antibiotics need to be changed again.  They will also be taking him back to surgery today to clean out the wound more.  We are praying that the infections have not reached his hip prosthesis at this point.

My Grandpa has been there for me my entire life.  Supporting me, encouraging me, advising me.  He has shown us all through his quiet strength and wisdom what a man and more importantly a father and grandfather should be.  He has demonstrated unconditional love and an unfailing faith in God.  As a WWII veteran he’s seen and been through more than we could ever imagine.  He is the glue that holds our extended family together and we aren’t ready to give up on him yet.

I am asking for prayers for him.  Prayers for wisdom for the doctors treating him. Prayers of healing of his body.  And prayers for uplifting of his spirit because sometimes that can make a world of difference.LewisChristina-0386
{photo credit}


Hump Day Bump Day: Week 33

Recently TheBump.com posted their “How Big is Baby: Dad-to-Be Edition.”  (You know, because the dads-to-be out there couldn’t possibly know what size a pineapple or acorn squash or durian fruit is?  Ok I admit, I don’t think I’ve ever seen a durian fruit except on the Travel Channel.)  With Father’s day coming up this weekend and inspired by the Bump article, I decided to go by the daddy size example for the board!  So here you have it… {for the dad’s out there} baby is the size of…  week 33

Notice the tiny little note in the heart that tells you that drawing is the actual estimated length of the baby?! How the hector is that fitting in there??
Health Stats: blood pressure: 118/62, baby heartbeat: 148, weight gain ~23lbs. Bump is measuring 2-3 weeks ahead so next appointment includes an ultrasound to see if Miss M is unusually large.  Her daddy was ~11lbs at birth…

How far along? 33 Weeks, 3 Days
Outfit? Maternity jeans, regular cardi & tank
Stretch marks/Belly Button? VERY shallow innie & no stretch marks yet!
Sleep: Oh sleep is a distant memory… last night was particularly horrible with reflux and Braxton Hicks allowing me a mere 2 solid hours before I got up for work. 
Best moment this week: Friday we found out our insurance company and the local hospital group came to an agreement and we can deliver at the closer hospital where all our preparations were taking place! Also a fabulous day because I had my OB appointment and heard Maddie’s heartbeat!
Miss Anything? Sleep. Being able to get up and down without help or a lot of prep. A full breath. My normal size fingers and toes.
Movement: She’s rolling around a lot in there!  I’m trying to get video of the “waterbed effect” but so far Miss M is camera shy.
Food cravings: Watermelon & cantaloupe.
Anything making you queasy or sick: Stupid reflux when I eat after 8pm…
Labor Signs? Ok I’ve most definitely had false labor or Braxton Hicks contractions 3 times now.  Of course I have downloaded a contraction timer/counter app on my phone in the event of the real deal happening at any conceivable moment from here on out.
Mood? If it’s an emotion or mood… I’ve felt it in the last week.
Looking forward to:  Setting up the nursery!  So far I’ve only been able to visualize it as we finish up painting so we can get the carpet installed. Hopefully just 2 more weeks (?) and we can move the pile of baby stuff from our townhouse to the real house!
Worries & Fears:  Well every pregnancy related email/newsletter/website I’ve read lately says I should have my hospital bag packed.  I don’t yet. Last night’s nightmare had this very fact at its center. I just decided on possible clothing options for baby’s coming home (which now need to be washed) but haven’t worked out the other deets quite yet.  That might become this weeks project…
Weekly Thoughts/Questions: To bank or not to bank is the question of the week… talking about cord blood here.  I know the costs are astronomical so if that’s prohibitive then you have to decide if you want to donate or forgo the process altogether.  I just don’t know.  More research is needed on my end before I can decide!


Hump Day Bump Day: Week 32

32 weeks

How far along? 32 Weeks, 3 Days
Outfit? Maternity jeans and tank, regular cardi
Stretch marks/Belly Button? Still no stretch marks!  And the button is still in!
Sleep: What is sleep? I wake up a lot and most of the time I feel like I’m not getting restful sleep.  The hubs also claims I’m making odd snoring/honking type noises… I say its all lies
Best moment this week: Going to our first childbirth class!
Miss Anything? My wedding ring.  It has been officially retired for the duration of the pregnancy
Movement: Kicking my ribs seems to be Miss Maddie’s favorite pastime
Food cravings: Strawberries and watermelon!
Anything making you queasy or sick: Other than reflux – nope!
Labor Signs? Pretty sure this is still a no.. although I did wake up with some cramping the other night that could have been Braxton Hicks.
Mood? Exhausted. Overwhelmed. Excited. Happy.
Looking forward to: My next OB appointment on Friday!
Worries & Fears: That we won’t finish the house in time.  We have been working as hard as we can and have had lots of help from the in-laws but it seems like the work is never ending.  But to focus on the positive, we won’t be homeless even if baby arrives before the house is finished so I’m trying to just remember to go with the flow!
Weekly Thoughts/Questions: The insurance/hospital battle is still raging on so I’m wondering if I should book a maternity ward tour at the alternative hospital.  We have heard rumors of a *possible* extension of the contract until mid July but baby girl isn’t due until the very end so we would still be in limbo.  Even if they extend it from June 30 to July 31 it would still cause worry/stress because if Madeline arrives later than expected we will still need hospital choice #2.  For now we are forging ahead with anesthesia consults and childbirth classes and tours at hospital #1 and hoping everyone comes to their senses and does right by the patients. Side note: most of the 11 couples in our childbirth class are in the same boat.  Its nice to have some company in this stress!



ring!Once upon a time my fingers were long, thin and graceful…
Once upon a time they were described as “piano hands” by others…  
Once upon a time my engagement ring and wedding ring fit on those fingers…

And now?  We have officially entered… the puffy stump zone. 

So much so that my fingers feel stiff when I try to bend them, and my engagement ring and wedding ring have been temporarily removed as they only fit to just about my first knuckle. 

So what’s a pregnant for another 2 months girl to do?

puffy ringBeg her hubby for a {bigger} replacement ring – or two - of course! 

Don’t worry, I went easy on him and the {two} replacements were under $20 total and totally worth it!  Now I can wear a ring in comfort and not feel like something is missing from my finger.  They are 2 sizes bigger than my original rings and are a bit big but at least I don’t feel like they are cutting off my circulation.  I have the 3 stone one pictured to the right and another yellow “diamond” antiqued looking one.  SO cute!

And? They will be super cute costume jewelry for my other fingers once my hands have been restored to their pre-pregnancy size. Bonus!


Hump Day Bump Day: Week 31

A few minor delays in getting this posted but here we go!

week 31

Health Stats: blood pressure: 104/68, baby’s heartbeat: 148, total weight gain ~20lbs

How far along? 31 Weeks, 3 Days
Outfit? Regular dress and cardi
Stretch marks/Belly Button? No stretch marks, still an innie! yay!
Sleep: Seems to be getting better a little? Still waking up a few times each night and flipping from side to side but I feel more rested.
Best moment this week: The whole weekend!  We were in Michigan visiting my family :)
Miss Anything? Energy.  Mine has been zapped
Movement: Feeling and seeing very strong kicks these days!
Food cravings: I still have a thing for strawberries but the hubs mentioned watermelon the other day and suddenly that’s all I can think about
Anything making you queasy or sick: Reflux - ugh
Labor Signs? None as of yet
Mood? Tired but overall happy
Looking forward to: Seeing the newly painted nursery this weekend – the in-laws were busy while we were gone!
Worries & Fears: That baby girl will decide to come early.  I’m just not ready yet!
Weekly Thoughts/Questions: Thinking about my birth plan and how things will go.  Also wondering if I should look into recipes and foods that help boost breast milk supply?  I’ve heard that starting these before baby arrives can help immensely in those first few weeks.


Hump Day Bump Day: Week 30!

week 30How far along? 30 Weeks, 3 Days – Just 10 weeks to go!
Outfit? Maternity jeans, regular tank and tee
Stretch marks/Belly Button? No stretch marks yet and the button is still in.
Sleep: Sleep has taken a very bad turn.  If the position doesn’t hurt I’m waking up to pee or because of crazy dreams.  I’m overly exhausted but can’t seem to get any real rest.
Best moment this week: Will be today at my OB appointment when I hear the heartbeat again! 
Miss Anything? This week it has been wine.  I’ve wanted/needed a glass more than 1 night this week
Movement: Lots of strong kicks on the bladder these days… making frequent bathroom stops!
Food cravings: Strawberries still!
Anything making you queasy or sick: Not enough sleep, allergies and sinus drainage
Labor Signs? Not yet… we have a way to go yet though so this can wait!
Mood? Exhausted and very cranky
Looking forward to: Punching out today and knowing I don’t have to punch back in until next week Wednesday!  Also, seeing all my family in Michigan and celebrating at 2 baby showers!
Worries & Fears: That we won’t have all the basics in time for Miss Madeline’s arrival!
Weekly Thoughts/Questions: I can barely put 2 thoughts together these days and I don’t know if its pregnancy exhaustion, regular exhaustion from lack of sleep, the raging hormones or a combination of the three.  Whatever it is, it makes my work twice as mentally exhausting.  Its also getting very uncomfortable sitting in my desk chair for 8-11hrs a day or any other chair for that matter.  Basically work feels like mental and physical torture right now and I can’t wait to be done with this 8 day, 80 stretch!  I so need a break!


Hump Day Bump Day: Week 29

week 29

Health Stats: blood pressure 116/68, 1hr glucose test results: 94,
baby’s heartbeat 156, total weight gain ~19lbs

How far along? 29 Weeks, 3 Days
Outfit? Maternity leggings, tank and shirt
Stretch marks/Belly Button? No stretch marks, still have an innie!
Sleep: Sleeping decent as long as I make sure not to eat too late!
Best moment this week: Having 3 days off in a row… course the trade off is I’m working the next 8 days straight, 10hrs a day.  That used to be my normal schedule but the pregnancy fatigue made me rethink that schedule and switch to a more normal 8hrs/5days schedule for the past 4.5months.
Miss Anything? Coffee ice cream
Movement: Lots of strong kicks on the bladder these days… making frequent bathroom stops!
Food cravings: Strawberries… hubs even suggested this must be my pregnancy craving because can’t get enough of them!  Thankfully, we are in berry season around these parts.
Anything making you queasy or sick: Nope not really!
Labor Signs? Not that I’ve noticed.. and I hope I notice something like that
Mood? Been exhausted consistently but other than that mostly in a good mood
Looking forward to: heading to MI next week to see my family and have 2 baby showers!
Worries & Fears: That the baby will come early and we won’t be ready for her!
Weekly Thoughts/Questions: My tummy is feeling hard and stretched and I don’t know where this baby is gonna go if she gets much bigger.  Also?  I think this is the first time in my life I’ve had ever had rock hard abs!


The House

If you have been following along with the Hump Day Bump Day posts, you may have caught on to the fact that we are also currently in the middle of a remodel of our home to be!  A little background… my hubs inherited this 1940’s mountain home when his ‘granny’ passed away.  When he moved to TN from TX about the same time I moved to TN from MI, he moved into her home with his stuff and basically left everything the way she had it when she was living there.  We have been working on paring down (both at the house and in our townhouse), clearing out, refinishing and making the space work for us and baby.  I thought I would post a few before and during the process pics.. after pics will be coming much later because we aren’t moving in until after Miss Madeline makes her appearance.DSC00050

We aren’t planning to do much to the outside this year as most of our cash flow is tied up on the inside and with buying the necessary baby gear. This was taken a few months ago when the trees were still in full on winter mode and we have a bag of bathroom remodel trash on the porch!




Bathroom before, demo, during remodel. There was no existing shower so we had that added and had the tub surround tile done. Not pictured are the new vanity and toilet and we still need to paint and add the light fixtures but we are *almost* done in here!

013 014

The last pics I will post are of the living area/front entry.  We have the dreaded wood paneling in the living room, dining room, kitchen and part of the hallway currently.  I scoured Pinterest and found that it is possible to paint the darn stuff and update the look of the house without having to rip it all out and re-drywall the whole thing.  The results so far have been worth the effort for sure!DSC00083

The above pic still has the painters tape but you can get the idea.  It went from crazy paneling color to a khaki color with white trim.  Still to do in here: touch up the trim, change out the ceiling fan, clean the blinds (& figure out window coverings), and replace the carpeting.

Still to do: paint the bathroom, paint the 3 bedrooms, paint the kitchen, replace the linoleum in the kitchen, replace light fixtures/ceiling fans throughout, and get the carpet replaced throughout. I know it sounds like a lot – and it is!  But this will be our first family home together not just my townhouse that he moved into after we got married.  More importantly, it will be the first home for Madeline.  A place for her firsts and a place for us to grow together as a family.  The work is more than worth it!


Hump Day Bump Day: Week 28

week 28

How far along? 28 Weeks, 3 Days
Outfit? Maternity jeans, normal shirt
Stretch marks/Belly Button?  No stretch marks and I’ve got a shallow innie.
Sleep: Sleeping better the past few days or so.. perhaps it’s because I’m purely exhausted lately?
Best moment this week: Later today! {see answer under looking forward to}
Miss Anything? Missing my family this week but I will see them in about 2 weeks!
Movement: Getting stronger and you can now see them from the outside if you happen to be looking!
Food cravings: Strawberries and Jersey Mike’s turkey with cheese, lettuce, oil & vinegar… mmmmm
Anything making you queasy or sick: Not really – I have to say I’ve been blessed not to have too much of this since the first trimester!
Labor Signs? None yet… thank goodness.
Mood? Today I’m exhausted and a bit overwhelmed but overall in a decent mood.
Looking forward to: Hearing Maddie’s heartbeat later today at the OB!
Worries & Fears: Still the battle between the insurance company and the local hospital system over more/less money.  Right now as of July 1 all the local hospitals will be considered “out of network” and instead of being covered 100% we will be faced with high {and unexpected up to this point} hospital fees.  Our next step is to try to get a continuance letter from the insurance company.  To do this we need a letter from myself and my doctors petitioning my case and why continuance of care will be necessary after my 36th week through delivery.  Their response {yea/nay} will take another 30-45 days… tell me again why universal healthcare is a bad idea?
Weekly Thoughts/Questions: Where did my feet go?


Hump Day Bump Day: Week 27

week 27

Welcome to the 3rd Trimester!!
The hubs suggested I change up the questions so I will be keeping a few and adding a few that are more pertinent as we get closer to Due Day.

How far along? 27 Weeks, 3 Days
Outfit? Maternity jeans, normal tank, normal shirt
Stretch marks/Belly Button? Not yet and still an innie – YAY!
Sleep: Recently its been rough.. my hips go numb or slip out of joint and the other night I woke up {again} with reflux coming up and out – yuck!
Best moment this week: Shopping for baby items and fabric with my mother-in-law – can’t wait to see the dress she makes for Maddie!
Miss Anything? Sleep…
Movement: Everyone is kung fu fighting in there... apparently her opponent is my ribcage.
Food cravings: Recent obsessions: strawberries and Haagen-Dazs Raspberry Sorbet… so delish!
Anything making you queasy or sick: Not much.. just if I eat too much in one sitting.
Labor Signs? None yet… wondering if I will get those Braxton Hicks things or not?
Mood? Today I’m grumpy. Very grumpy.  I blame lack of sleep and a long work day.
Looking forward to: A slightly longer weekend – working 9hrs/day so I can work just a half day Saturday and then it’s a fun filled weekend with the hubs!
Worries & Fears: That the local hospital and our insurance company won’t come to an agreement leaving us to scramble to a) find a new OB at this late stage or b) pay out of network fees to continue on.. neither is a particularly enticing option.
Weekly Thoughts/Questions: Researching and wondering about babywearing… what method is best for baby?


Hump Day Bump Day: Week 26

week 26

Health Stats: Blood Pressure 118/64, baby’s Heartbeat 156, total weight gain ~15lbs

How far along? 26 Weeks, 3 Days
Maternity clothes? This outfit is maternity jeans and tank with “normal” cardigan
Stretch marks? Nope!
Sleep: Doing ok.  Still have hips that go numb but I’ve been sleeping deeper and dreaming again.
Best moment this week:  Hearing the baby’s heartbeat at my appointment.  It never gets old.   
Miss Anything? Still coffee. Everything is better with coffee.
Movement: My uterus is a gym mat.
Food cravings: Thanks to commercials the new boneless, skinless chicken from KFC.. although I have to report it’s not as good as it looked or sounded.  Will stick with Original Recipe from now on even if it is more “work.”
Anything making you queasy or sick: Not much.. just if I eat too much in one sitting.
Have you started to show yet: Pretty sure that’s a yes
Gender: Gymnastics Darling
Pregnancy Symptoms: Pregnancy rhinitis, reflux, crazy dreams, fatigue… check!
Belly Button in or out? A very shallow innie
Happy or Moody? Today is happy.. tomorrow who knows?
Weekly Thoughts: We are almost into the 3rd trimester.. where the heck did the time go?!
Looking forward to: Getting back out to the house to do more painting!  Its making a huge difference and we don’t have many weeks left!


Hump Day Bump Day: Week 25

week 25aHow far along? 25 Weeks, 3 Days
Maternity clothes? This outfit is normal fold-over yoga pants with maternity shirt
Stretch marks? None yet.
Sleep: It’s been better, it’s been worse.. I’ve found my bed is the best for sleeping right now though/
Best moment this week: Madeline kicked her daddy in the noggin when he was laying on my tummy.  I think we are in trouble if our sweet little girl is already demanding we respect her personal space.
Miss Anything? Coffee most definitely!
Movement: She’s definitely active in there and has recently decided my bladder is a dance floor.
Food cravings: Chipotle chicken burrito bowl… and the closest one is 85 miles away!
Anything making you queasy or sick: The wonderful daily reflux.
Have you started to show yet: I think so?
Gender: Dancing Diva
Pregnancy Symptoms: Pregnancy rhinitis, reflux, crazy dreams, fatigue… check! 
Belly Button in or out? A very shallow innie
Happy or Moody? I think I’m being pretty happy these days. 
Weekly Thoughts: In light of what happened Tuesday at the Boston Marathon, I wonder what kind of world we are bringing our daughter into.  How will we explain these types of things to her?  How can we protect her innocence for as long as possible in a world where we are bombarded with “real time” new updates, social media, and constant connection?
Looking forward to: Getting back to a normal schedule for a few weeks and getting some more work done at the house… namely painting!  Also? It’s been in the 80’s here but we are expecting more normal temps (60’s-70’s) by the end of the week.  I’ve found that the 80’s are a bit warm for this prego lady so I’m looking forward to the more comfortable temps!


Thirty {point} Four


It’s that time of year again… today is my BIRTHDAY

And if you haven’t been around for the ride of the past 4 years you can catch up on the whys of the 30 {point} 4 rather than me just saying “I’m 34” here, here, annnnd here.

Life as I knew it stopped the year I turned 30. And I’m not just saying that it was a ‘holy crap my 20’s are gone!’ moment, my life literally stopped for the year while I dealt with cancer.  From the moment I heard that word everything changed and I felt like I had been cheated out of that year.

This year I think we may finally move past all that.  This year I no longer feel like I was cheated or robbed of a life that I could have had. 

This year I am feeling fully blessed.

I can’t think of a better thing to celebrate… can you?