Belly Project: 18 Weeks

Saturday, January 31, 2015
Week 18 - I still feel like my bump is hard to tell, is she pregnant or just losing control ;)

Size of baby: size of an onion
Total Weight Gain/Loss: I am up 4 lbs from my pre-pregnancy weight...I am up about 9 lbs from my pretend pre-pregnancy weight (you know the one you hope to get back to someday) ;) due to all the sickness, I haven't gained a ton yet but I am sure it will pack on at the end, it always does!
Maternity Clothes: finally went and bought maternity yoga pants, I have never been "this" pregnant in the winter but my regular yoga pants just felt SO tight in the waist by the end of the day and its too cold to wear my capri ones out in public...yadayadayada, so I found some at a consignment shop!  
Gender: Boy (as of today we finally have a boy AND a girl name picked out but due to opinions in the past, they will remain a secret UNLESS you ask my kids, they have a horrible time with secrets ;)
Movement: At almost 18 weeks I felt a genuine hi-ya kick but I do feel them squirming around in there particularly when I lay down at night or am still during rest time in the afternoon.
Fetal Heartbeat:  150
Sleep: It varies...I am pregnant, what can I expect ;).

Cravings: It changes as fast as the wind shifts (still my motto).  Recently dairy all of a sudden doesn't agree with my tummy :(.  I was craving yogurt with granola until the whole my tummy doesn't like you and gets rid of you thing ;).  Now the last 2 days, it has been a spicy chicken sandwich with mayo from Chick Fil-a.  This entire pregnancy anything "buffalo-style" sounds good!
Symptoms: I have gotten sick a couple mornings this week and spent Friday in bed.  I am not going to lie, I had wanted to be pregnant for so long, I kind of glamorized it (after 4 years of not being pregnant, I FORGOT, funny how that works ;) and some women thrive during pregnancy...lets just say I grin and we bare it in this house.  It is a precious but trying time.  I cry at anything remotely sappy...
Exercise: I feel like every week, I get more into a groove and able to do more. I just might have to take a potty stop ;)!  Yoga feels good, enjoyed zumba, and switching up incline walking on the treadmill and riding the bike along with body work.  I have a wedding August 1st and that lingers in the back of my mind...
What do the kids think: Now that they know I can feel the baby, they are desperate to feel him/her too.  My belly is growing so Vera is losing inches when I hold her.  She told me today, baby needed to move to the other side so she had more room...don't think that is going to happen. ;)  Other than that their world has been pretty normal now that their mama is feeling better for the most part!
On my heart: I have felt SO much guilt about this pregnancy and my inabilities and I have finally just let it all go.  SO MUCH OF IT WAS OUT OF MY CONTROL!  And I like control so that is probably why I was frustrated.  I have gotten to the point that I just do the best I can and be intentional about showing people I love and care about them, especially my family, and the rest just gets done ;).  We have a busy spring ahead so I am glad I am overcoming the guilt!

Disney on Ice...

Thursday, January 29, 2015
The Sunday after our epic Thanksgiving we went to Disney on Ice.  We were not planning on it but our friends, The Porter's, had extra tickets due to a death in the family of her sister SO we bought the tickets and went last minute.  I tried so hard early on in my pregnancy to make special moments for our kids because they were TROOPERS.  We ate at El Bait Shop downtown and had a variety of appetizers before heading to the show.
We didn't really prep the kids with what to expect so Vera's face when it started and all the characters came out was PRICELESS.  She especially LOVED it.

It was a fun impromptu date day with good family friends.  I think Scott may have convinced given how much our kids love it that it is worth the money ;).  If the princesses or Frozen Disney on Ice come, you better believe we will be going :).

Solon's Preschool Photos...

Wednesday, January 28, 2015
Solon 4 year old preschool (left) and 5 year old preschool (right)

How is he so big?  He is growing up by the day and learning something new all the time.  He cracks us up with his funny comments and witty statements.  He is such a big boy and a good student!

Thanksgiving 2014...

Tuesday, January 27, 2015
SO Thanksgiving 2014 will go down as a comic tragedy...I feel so bad for our lovely hosts, Raquel and Josh, because we were awful guests :(.  The trip started out with one of our only winter snowstorms, that coupled with a busy driving time, made the roads kind of wild.  We met up with Scott's parents in Clear Lake for some food before continuing on.  I was super sick the entire time but we didn't want to stop so I just used the leftover drink cups and filled them up as we rode...needless to say we were glad to arrive at their home late Wednesday evening.  The kids were thrilled for 3 slumber party nights.
The next morning, Josh and Raquel got right to work in the kitchen making a delicious spread and we had appetizers beginning at noon followed by a huge dinner.  Just for nostalgia sake, our son also happened to dent their beautiful new table with his spoon while having lunch.  I burst into tears, Solon did too when we has disciplined and needless to say I wanted to die!  Luckily again, they were so gracious...I am still trying to figure out how to fix that.
By that evening Scott was in bed with a fever and didn't reappear until the next morning asking for drugs...I was at this point in my pregnancy puking up after every meal, trying to be as discrete as I could away from home...yikes, did I mention we were the WORST guests!  Scott took some drugs and I forced him to rally so we could enjoy the afternoon planned in Minneapolis.

We went to Penguins of Madagascar at the movie theater and then headed downtown to Macy's Santaland.  We had never all been to see Santa together, it was such a treat to share that memory with cousins and Scott's 94 year old Grandma.  They have these sweet north pole displays set up of the elves doing all sorts of pre-Christmas tasks from baking cookies and candy, to collecting letters to Santa, and of course making toys.  The kids all loved it and we timed it perfectly as there was NO line!
Then it was time to meet the Big Guy himself and Vera was ready with her answers that she wanted baby bunk beds...Solon was the most timid insisting on Lance sitting between him and Santa so our yearly photo has no tears but some VERY serious faces!  Santa even shared his favorite cookie was chocolate chip and Vera didn't forget that so we made some especially for him for Christmas Eve.

After that it was just about dinner time so we punted and headed to Annie's on the U of M campus for some burgers and shakes.  None of us had been on campus before so it was fun to see where my cousin Alex and my grandparents (Wetherbee side) went to college!
After that we headed home for several rounds of Headbanz while Scott headed for bed and shortly after I followed.  I didn't make it to the car after dinner at Annie's, I was worried I would get picked up by the police for puking on the street corner...oy vey!

Needless to say by the next morning, Scott was sicker and I was feeling like a hot mess so we  quickly packed up earlier than we planned and headed home.  IT was the LONGEST car ride of my life.  I literally wanted to die...puking in drink cups from the moment we left.

Needless to say, it was a memorable thanksgiving and one we won't soon forget.  We are SOOOO thankful to our incredible hosts for taking such sweet care of us and we sure hope we behave better the next time they invite us over!

You say this is your last baby?

Wednesday, January 21, 2015
Ever since Scott and I began discussing serious topics early on in our dating career, we both always said 3 kids.  Once I had Solon I thought it was so amazing I could have 4 but then they start to grow up and demand more from you...and the thought of 4 seemed nice but not reality for us.

There are 3 main reasons we believe this is our last baby...

Physical -- For those of you that don't know, I have a genetic blood disorder called Factor 5/MTHFR  kindly referred to in the OB world as "mother F-er" (seriously, I about died the first time they referred to it that way).  It requires twice daily injections of a blood thinner known as lovenox that helps prevent a blood clot traveling to the placenta and causing miscarriage and still birth.  Being on lovenox is no joking matter and if I were to go into pre-term labor or be in some sort of accident it could be very serious for me and baby.  I have a great team of doctors that take great care of me but there is always risk.  With the lovenox, my labors are anything but natural.  I must be induced to make sure the blood thinner has warn off and then immediately return to twice daily injections until 12 weeks postpartum.  This condition does not cause immediate concern for me besides when I am pregnant as long as I stay young and active.

Along with those physical concerns, I also have very laborious early pregnancies as evidenced by this round of IV's.  The complications of the blood disorder mean I can not do a permanent PICC line because you are at a higher risk of clotting.  This means that they can only do temporary IV lines and after just the first trimester my veins were blowing out regularly -- yikes, I will spare you the details.

I know some would say it is momentary pain for a lifetime of a child but I know my body's limits and  quite honestly I am not sure our insurance company will want to pay for another VERY expensive pregnancy (talking upwards of $50,000-75,000 dollars - we do not pay anything close to that thankfully).

Financial -- People might disagree with us on this one but we have many hopes and dreams for our children, including college as well as life experiences we want to share with them.  Both Scott and I were blessed to come out of college with no debt.  This enabled me to stay home more easily, etc.  At some point the plan is for me to go back to work but for now I will stay home until all of our kids are in elementary school.

And the last reason is we know our limit...everyone's threshold is different but Scott is 100% sure with 3 we will hit it.  I am also in agreement.  We haven't even had 3 yet but I know it will rock our world.  We will be outnumbered and move to zone defense very soon.  For those of you who think we have left God out of the equation, we haven't.  If God wants us to have more, I am sure he will make it very obvious and He can do that but as far as Scott and I feel led, we are very happy with 3.  We just know it is best for our family to be thankful for the 3 precious gifts God has gifted us.

I knew when I had Vera, there were more children to come, our family wasn't complete.  We have peace this time around that this is it.  When I miscarried, I distinctly remember one evening crying out to God and him telling me I would conceive again, I am thankful for His provision.  However difficult this pregnancy has been, I am thankful for it.  I know the hard days will pay off to a sweet baby to hold in a few short months.  We are soaking up the sweet moments and "lasts" of this stage.  It was bittersweet but surprisingly peaceful to come to the conclusion.  It is nice to appreciate the finality of it all.

Belly Project: Week 16

Tuesday, January 20, 2015
Size of baby: size of an avocado 
Total Weight Gain/Loss: 6 lbs (but I have only weighed myself at the scale at the Pittsburgh science center SO that might be off ;) up a pound at least in 2 weeks...
Maternity Clothes: been converting to move tank top and cardigans and maternity tees that are kind of transitional...I don't need the ones with the elastic on the side but the ones that hang a little lower on the torso, I have a long torso anyway ;)  
Gender: Boy - and people are guessing that too...
Movement: I thought maybe I felt him/her but can't be sure.  The placenta is on the anterior (front) so it may take a little longer (I know super big bummer)
Fetal Heartbeat:  varies between high 150's and 160's
Sleep: I wak up nearly every morning between 2-4 am sometime and struggle to fall back asleep.  I have absolutely no reason why.  I am still REALLY tired.  I don't know if it is just keeping up on daily tasks or what but normally after dinner, it doesn't sit great, and I am just done and want to lay down.  

Cravings: It changes as fast as the wind shifts.  I have been loving apples, cheese and crackers as snacks and meals.  Just like the other pregnancies I don't love snack-y things.  I would rather just have another sandwich...right now I am thinking of Fareway's chicken salad on a hawaiian sweet roll...  Coffee is hit or miss and of course pop tastes much better and sits better most of the time then water...I sure hope water feels/tastes good soon.  I force myself to drink it but it leaves the worst after taste in my mouth...metallic in nature!
Symptoms: I have been having some round ligament stretching, as well as dinner just doesn't normally sit real well.  I have not puked up a meal but I normally leave the dishes tip morning from dinner.  I still get horrible motion sickness, I am prone to it anyway, but its like heightened.  I got sick on our flight and on a car ride in PA.  Luckily all the weeks of puking had me prepared to handle it discretely ;).  
Exercise: Slow and steady.  I sang on praise team a couple weeks ago and I was out of breath after 4 songs. I have never been winded singing humbling.  I have been trying to get to the gym 3 times a week doing yoga, the bike and some weight training and body work (push-ups, planks, etc.)
What do the kids think: they are just so enthralled wanting to rub my belly, feel the baby (what a fun day that will be), talk to the baby and give the baby kisses.  Solon is thinking boy and Vera is really wanting a girl...
On my heart:  I have really been feeling inadequate in many areas of my life and I know that this is hollowed training ground for the months of an infant being in our home but I am TIRED and I just can't seem to get as much done as I would like...I have super high expectations of myself.  Just today I asked my bible study for prayer to give myself grace.  I just want to be the best mom, wife and homemaker but things are just slipping and I feel like I can't keep up.  Scott and the kids are amazing and so supportive, I just wish I could be 100% for them.  I know this season will pass but it definitely has me feeling just a touch frustrated (just to be real).  
And this is our last most likely (like 99.9999%) so I really am trying to take it all in.  I am formulating a post on why we believe this is our last but there are many reasons...trying to take each moment and just go with it (those that know me, know I don't just go with things the best...guess God is teaching me something here ;).
Don't mind my eyes being shut (I was probably dreaming of sleeping) courtesy of Solon 

Belly Project: The First Trimester...

Thursday, January 15, 2015
How Far Along: First Trimester 
October 29, 2014

4 weeks 2 days

8 weeks

12 weeks (after a church meal - ha!)

Week 14

Size of baby: size of a poppyseed (week 4) to size of a lemon (week 14)

Total Weight Gain/Loss: 5 lbs (mostly between weeks 11-14 when I was finally on IV and eating my mom and mother in law's delicious food)

Maternity Clothes: I have been loving my gap maternity skinny jeans since about week 8, they just have a thick elastic band so I want to wear these bad boys when I am not pregnant ;).  I also got some maternity leggings and wear my comfy clothes a lot since I spent so much time at the toilet and in bed.
Gender: Boy - I was sicker first trimester with Solon so that's where my guess is coming from for now

Movement: haven't felt him/her yet but they were very wiggly on both of our ultrasounds and they always have to catch him/her when they are finding their heartbeat.
Fetal Heartbeat:  varies between high 150's and 160's

Sleep: I have had a lot of night sweats and crazy dreams this first trimester as well as the occasional urge to pee that I fight as long as I can ;).  at week 14 we brought the body pillow back into bed and I enjoy snuggling up to it these days.  My sleeping was interrupted after going off the IV, the drugs made me very sleepy all.the.time so trying to sleep on my own without drugs took a few days. 

Cravings: All food made me nauseous the first trimester...if you handed me food, I would eat it but I could not pick something out or think about it AT ALL.  At week 14, my appetite started to come back.  Water was really hard to drink, it felt very heavy in my tummy.  I would choose food that was mild coming back up...sad but true.  Scott did all the cooking or we ate out, I just could not be around food.  Cannot stand anything sweet...yuck!  Pop helps my tummy so I drink some with caffeine and some without and some water...
Symptoms: At about week 6, I started getting increasingly more ill and began puking nearly everything that I ate and would continue to puke tip I fell asleep at night.  IT was exhausting.  We tried lots and lots of different combinations of drugs but no oral drugs seemed to do the trick.  We finally did my first hospital infusion on December 11th and from there decided to do them in home daily until further notice.  After we began the IV, I was able to keep food down but still nauseous and extremely tired normally going to bed by 6:30pm every day.  Scott was the hero taking care of the kids...we spent lots of days in mommy's bed watching a lot of Disney Jr. but we survived and the kids seem to be unscathed ;).  Those days were HARD, I am not going to lie.  I felt a lot of guilt not helping out at home and I didn't bond with the baby well because I was so sick I didn't even think about the fact I was pregnant.  It really was get up and survive the day and just get through this period of time.  Many of my prayers consisted of..."JESUS..." That was about all I could muster up somedays.  
We are thankful to be mostly on the upside.  The meds caused my intestinal tract to get all out of sync so around week 14, I decided the benefits were no longer outweighing the negatives so I prayed about it and decided to try to wean.  I was EXTREMELY nervous to go off of it and relapse so my amazing home healthcare nurses Molly and Laura, who came to see me 2 times per week, decided to leave the IV in just in case for the first week.  We are now fully through that week and everyday got easier.  There were a few days of detoxing and finding our new normal but I seem to have "more" energy.  I still need a nap some days and have nausea right after I eat or if I wait too long to eat and need to be in bed by 9pm!!!  I have to remind myself I am still pregnant, after being so sick, I think I thought I would be "normal" again.  I am thankful to say my intestines are back to normal and that has helped with the nausea some too!!!  I am so thankful for modern medicine and a caring OB staff who were in contact with me weekly and daily sometimes to help us through.  Also to our friends and family who brought meals and took good care of us to get us through the holidays (not an ideal time to have mommy down for the count but we made it special so that's all that mattered, thank goodness for amazon prime ;).

Exercise: Week 14 was my first week slowly reintroducing my body to exercise after not working out in about 8 weeks.  I did yoga, rode the bike and modified a workout class.  It felt good to get moving, I know it will give me more energy and help us get back in a routine.  Slow and steady...
What do the kids think: this week we share the size of the baby and they love to kiss my belly an talk about what baby is up to...they absolutely loved the ultrasound at 10 weeks and can't wait to go to the 20 week ultrasound (they will die when they turn on the 3D ;).  We told them baby drinks their own pee and can taste what mommy eats and those tidbits seem to really fascinate them...keeps coming back up ;)
Baby Port at 10 weeks

My IV line...I took that out every 3-4 days by myself and in between nurse visits administered my own IV daily!

My look most days...just so we can show baby someday ;)

And the best support team a mama could ask for...with their "buns in the oven" stickers!!!

A Wetherbee Girl's Weekend in NYC...

Wednesday, January 14, 2015
When my mom found out my sister was getting married, she thought it would be fun to get together and have a girls' weekend in NYC to dress shop!  Of course I was in!

Mom and I got in before Ellen so we made a trip to the 9/11 Memorial and museum.  We had never been and both wanted to go.  Wow...there are really no words that do those moments justice.  The museum is SO well done at documenting the day with artifacts and personal mementos and does a great job tributing the sweet souls lost on that awful day.  Even though there were masses of people, you could hear a pin drop the entire time.  You have to go.

The outside memorial was equally impressive...
The new freedom tower is beautiful and huge...the whole area is getting a facelift with a new Westfield mall that is an architectural feature in its own right.  It is going to be an amazing place to visit and reflect and and enjoy all that is to be proud of in NYC.

This wall installation represents every life that was lost.  It was beautiful and so impressive.
They had videos and sound clips saying the name of a deceased person and a special memory from their family.  It made it so real to hear something funny or sweet about a person...

...and it was SO beautiful at night!
Afterwards, we needed to decompress so we headed over to Century 21 and happened upon an amazing sale on Pea in the Pod maternity clothes :) was so fun to try on the belly bump...I never look that round and cute but it was fun to pretend :).
After that we took a taxi north and met my sister at a yummy steak place to kick off the weekend!

The next day we started off by getting her dream wedding shoes...a pair of nude patent Louboutin heels.  She is the shoe version of me and purses ;). She cried when she purchased them!!!

Then it was off to find the bridesmaid dresses at Macy's on Herald Square.  Given I am pregnant, time was of the essence to find something and buy it.  We found two styles in very flattering black.  I went with the strapless version since I will be nursing so imagine what I am wearing in black!!!

We did a little more shopping and then headed to Broadway to see If/Then with Idina Menzel...I mean I was star-struck.  She is phenomenal and came out afterwards and talked to the crowd, she was so down to earth.  It was amazing!!!!!

By this point, we were exhausted and quickly fell asleep before our big Kleinfeld's appointment the next morning :)!

We were freaking it is right out of the show.  They don't tape on the weekends as they stay very busy.  Randy only is there for show tapings, they have an actual fashion director whom we met and was equally Randy-ish ;)!  I was in awe and star-struck the whole time...all the consultants you see on TV were there...and I would point them out after they walked by...ha...
Not only was there the star factor but they have amazing costumer service from start to finish, they treated Ellen like a star.  She filled out everything ahead of time so there was minimal downtime.  We started the appointment walking around with her consultant picking out dresses so she could get a flavor of what Ellen wanted and then the consultant had an assistant that pulled things after that. It was efficient!

I got my picture with Joan and she sounds just like she does on TV and they are all even thinner in real life and so nice!!!!  Ellen was only 1 of 2 gals in her time slot that found a dress.  I think they have a lot of lookers, not necessarily buyers but they have a lot that buy too.

I wish I could show you the rest of the pictures I took after Ellen said "yes to the dress" but I am under strict instruction to not share any dress details but I will say she looks stunning and there were many happy tears!!!!  

We are so happy she said YES to the DRESS and we had a memorable and amazing weekend in NYC!!!!!!

Solon's preschool field trip to the Orchard...

Tuesday, January 13, 2015
Solon loves school. This fall they headed out to the orchard for a field trip.  State law prohibits siblings coming along so we took him, dropped him into the care of his teachers and then Vera and I played, just the two of us. It's good for Solon to be without mom sometimes and Vera so enjoyed our little date.

Solon's Pre-K class

A ride behind the tractor with his bestie friend Em went along and took this photo :)

They got to pick out 3 gourds to take home so we had some lovely fall decor!

...and Vera and mommy did the slide, corn pool, saw the animals, and had lots of fun.  Of course we got some doughnuts for the way home to share with Solon :).

Pumpkin Carving...

Monday, January 12, 2015
We picked up this year's prize pumpkins while at the orchard with my parents.  Then the kids decided what designs they wanted, lucky for us, they don't know yet about the fancier options and still opt for the shapes Jack O'lanterns!

Scott and I per usual did 95% of the cleaning out while we shared the Pumpkin Parable with our kids.  Just like the yucky inside of the pumpkin is cleaned out, so does God clean out our messy insides and replace it with a light to shine to the world. We have a book too...a great analogy for young and old!

After the seeds were on a baking sheet in the oven and the guts were cleared out...Vera planned out her pumpkin and mommy got to work.  I am the resident carver for now :).

Then it was Solon's turn to plan his out...

And we had some cute traditional Jack O'Lanterns ready to light up our stoop!

We discovered battery powered candles work great!  A very heart loving pumpkin and another with lots of teeth ;).

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