Shirudo Antioxidant Lotion

Shirudo Antioxidant Lotion
PMLE Symptom Prevention! With AGR!!

ABC Pure * Safe * Beneficial

ABC Pure * Safe * Beneficial
Arbonne Baby Care Set

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Let's Talk: Post Pregnancy Issue #2 - Post-Partum Depression & Baby Blues

This is something that a lot of women have trouble talking about.  The funny thing is, once you mention it in a group of moms, all of a sudden the ice is broken and the truth comes out.  Post-partum despression (PPD), or at least the "baby blues"  is soooo common and a lot of women suffer from some it to some degree after the birth of their baby. 

*Ahhh.... what a relief it is to hear real women talk about real personal issues - letting their guard down and really communicating and learning from their friends - creating close bonds and friendships with other moms... friendships like you've been trying develop since middle school (more on friendships after mommy-hood in a later post)*

Back on point: Why is this such a "personal" and "hush-hush" post-pregnancy (PP) issue?  Obviously, mental health issues are nothing that most of us wish to divulge openly - if at all - but since PPD is so common after pregnancy, it seems like something that would be more widely discussed... at least among women... or at LEAST between you and your doctor!!

Alas, it is not.

With my first son, the crying started about a week post-partum (PP).  I wasn't sure what I was crying about, all I knew was that I couldn't stop it once it started coming.  It would happen about twice a day and would only last about 5 minutes... but it was everyday... and worrisome. 

(On a side-note, from my research on baby blues, this pattern is very common - not crying and feeling sad ALL day, but for short periods during the day...)

By the time my 6-week PP check-up rolled around, it had stopped (thank God) and there was really nothing to discuss with the doctor.  Which is a good thing because, wouldn't you know it, they never even asked me how I was doing emotionally.  No one did.  And I can tell you that if I had still been feeling depressed and sad at that point, I doubt I would have just come right out with that information on my own without being asked.
My experience the second time around was different.  I think I was so afraid of getting PPD that I sat around the first few hours after getting home from the hospital crying and worrying about getting it.  Thankfully, short of some crazy mood swings (sorry Jamie :) and a couple short crying fits, there has been no daily crying or sadness.  In all honesty, I feel like I just don't even have the time to sit around and be sad and depressed this time.  Whew!  I'm relieved!!  And again, no mention of baby blues or PPD at my PP check-up.

Strike two.

For me, the first few weeks are so tiring and hard - and such a huge adjustment for the entire family. And I think that's why they are the hardest for me.... and probably most families.  However, the risk for PPD exists ANYTIME after pregnancy - so it's always something to consider and watch when you are a new mom!

So, what is the deal with me writing this?  Mostly to point out how the current medical system (at least what I've been exposed to in having two babies) really lacks in resources for following up with new moms in regards to PPD and baby blues.  Being handed a sheet of paper when leaving the hospital with a checklist of symptoms, telling you to "call your healthcare provider" does NOT cut it. I've always felt like a quick phone call from either your OB or the hospital during the first week or two would be a very worthy follow-up.  Time and money well-spent in my opinion.

I feel like the medical system has really let women down in regards to mental well being - "dropped the ball" so to speak. I've got 10 different numbers and resources to contact if I have trouble breastfeeding, but no certain number to call if I have trouble just getting through my day? Of course I could call my OB, or the hospital, or Google it to find some help in my area ... I know that. But when you aren't feeling like yourself and barely have the motivation to get out of the bed in the morning, is it realistic to expect a women to look up a phone number, call, leave a message, be called back, does my insurance cover this, etc... ? Seriously. Not going to happen. 

I know there are advocates out there to help women emotionally after giving birth, but where are they?  Why don't THEY have fliers in my "Going Home" hospital packet along with all the other formula and nipple butter samples?

I thank my lucky stars that this hasn't been a huge issue for me.  And I wish I had the resources, time, and energy to do more about helping women who are silently suffering with post-pregnancy sadness, blues, or depression.  But, if nothing else, I leave you with this:

If you know a new mom, call her and ask how SHE is doing.  In all likelihood, the baby is great.... and she gets asked about the baby 10 times a day...  Ask how SHE is doing.  Stop by.... offer to bring some coffee or a snack.  Share you experiences and knowledge of life right after having a baby.  Just opening up the dialogue could make a huge difference!!

*On a side note: Something to consider when speaking with a new mom - If one more person had told me to "get some rest" or "sleep when the baby sleeps" etc... when I was first coming home from the hospital, I seriously think I might have exploded.    My personal suggestion, DO NOT say these things to new parents.  It actually stressed us out MORE to hear people say this all the time!!  OF COURSE I AM TIRED - I  HAVE A NEWBORN. DUH!  It doesn't help for you to tell me I SHOULD be sleeping!  ahhhh! - OK, I feel better now!  :)*

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Sometimes Bigger IS Better

Logan's 1-month appointment was Thursday and boy was I surprised at his weight!  11 pounds 11 ounces!  Wow-ee!  I was looking back through Connor's baby book and he didn't weigh that much until his 2-month check-up!

We are amazed that Logan is in the 90th percentile in both length (22.5") and weight when Connor started out as only 50 percentile and has slowly worked his way down to about the 20th!  I guess Logan will be beating up on Connor sooner than we thought!

What does this all mean?  A few things:  We had to buy some summer clothes for Logan because he already grew out of the things I had for him AND he is sleeping better than Connor was at his age!  Yea!

All of us out to dinner at Stoney River for my mom's birthday and Jamie's parents anniversary!

And Logan slept through it all, of course!

Thanks for stopping by!

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Let's Talk: Post-Pregnancy Issue 1 - Breast AND Bottle Feeding

There are a lot of women out there with strong feelings one way or another on breastfeeding.  I'd like to think I am not one of those women.  Honestly, I think other people's opinions and judgements about breastfeeding are better left unsaid, because more often than not, they end up stressing a new mom out more than actually helping!

I do, however, feel strongly that there doesn't have to be a right or wrong, all-or-nothing answer when it comes to feeding your newborn.  The "right" answer is whatever works best for both you and baby... and the rest of the family... and maybe even your social life because, let's face it, an unhappy mom = unhappy household.

I am certainly not the most cuddly, sit-around-all-day-and-look-at-the-baby type moms.... but I do enjoy the special closeness that comes with nursing.  The hubby and I tried to keep our lives as similar to pre-baby as possible when we had Connor, and with our second baby, things haven't been any different... and that makes nursing a pain (pun intended a little bit ;)  Slipping off to a quiet room, alone, for 30 or more minutes, to nurse, isn't exactly my idea of a great time.  Again, love the bonding with baby, but it sucks when you feel like you are missing out on other things because of it.

So am I nursing?  Yes.  Do I love it? Yes ... and No.  Let me explain.

I would not trade the nursing experience for anything.  The first time he latches, the little milk mustache, the bonding, the coy eye-contact while feeding, and the sense of providing for your own baby.  Wow - that's cool.  What else is cool?  I love not having to wear a padded bra in order to have boobs right now ... plus I can still eat like I'm preggers because nursing burns so many calories.  There are so many other benefits for you and baby - I think most of us are aware... these are just my personal faves!

HOWEVER (and this is important), breastfeeding is not like a lot of lactation-pushers would suggest.  Does it hurt at first?  Yes.  Your nipples will feel as if you took a wad of sandpaper and went to town on them.... for a short time, that is.  I honestly don't think anything can prepare you for that, but it does get better - quickly if the latch is correct.  To be completely honest, for me, the pain of nursing is really a non-issue.  Uh, I just gave birth. this is nothing!

Now for THE 2 BIGGIES!!

1.)  Daddy (or other helpers you might have enlisted) CANNOT nurse for you.  Nope, he can't.  And, having him give a breast milk bottle once a night so you can sleep doesn't really work either because you still have to get up and pump.  Bummer.  By the second night home from the hospital, this reality sets in hard-core!

2.) No matter what any lactation-pusher tells you, it has been my experience, the experience of my friends, and confirmed by hospital nurses, that babies tend to go longer between feedings when they are on formula.  Yes.  That's right.  4 hours instead of 2 hours at night?  That's a big freakin' deal!

Nursing?  Easier?  I wouldn't say easier.  Cheaper - sure.  Are there benefits - of course... but formula is also great... and not evil!

So here is what I have worked out that makes sense for me and our family.  Feel free to steal this idea!  In fact, I recommend it!

My little punkin' gets to nurse anytime between 7AM and 7 PM.  Between 7 PM and 7 AM, he is hittin' the bottle.  He gets anywhere from 2-4 bottles right now, which are half breast milk and half Enfamil Gentlease formula.  That is just until his little system gets more developed and used to the formula, then it's going to be all formula at night and I'll use my stored-up pumped breast milk for day-time bottle feedings when I'm not home, etc...

Right now, I still pump a couple of times between the dinner time breastfeeding and going to bed ... that's just to keep up my supply, which is crucial when cutting out several feedings and supplementing with bottles/ formula. (Now, this is where I screwed up with my first son - you MUST keep pumping or feeding regularly in the beginning and not get lazy!!!)   I think at about 6-8 weeks, my milk supply will be established enough where I'm not having to pump anymore unless I miss a day-time feeding.  I also happen to enjoy the Mother's Milk tea, so I have a cup or two of that a day... not sure it helps, but I figure what the hell?

I'm certainly no expert, but I'm hoping that other moms out there who are looking for a little insight and support on breastfeeding and supplementing will find my experience helpful and comforting.  It doesn't have to be all or nothing!  It's whatever you want it to be!  The more enjoyable and flexible nursing is for you, the longer you will keep it up!  It's a win-win... Bonus!

Lot's more hot mommy topics coming soon!  Thanks for stopping by!

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Pictures and Update!

A quick update:  We are all doing just fine!  A little tired, but fine!  Connor is adjusting well and has been very proud to announce his new big brother status to anyone and everyone!  At Logan's 1 week appointment, he had already gained almost a pound from when we left the hospital, weighing in at over 8.5 pounds!

More to come when I've got more time, but I leave you with some pictures!

Thanks for stopping by!

Heading into our bathroom to put on some fashionable hospital duds!  Notice the clock .... 6:15AM - yucky!

Rockin' the sweet hospital gown just before laying down and starting the 'process'!  Sexy, right? ;)

8 pounds 5.4 ounces.  Wow!  Big boy!

Proud daddy!

Our new family of 4!

Still in recovery.

Hospital website shot

Another hospital website shot.  Here you can see a little bit of his facial bruising, which the doctors said was from delivering so fast!  Poor buddy!

Big Brother Connor holding Logan for the first time!  With dad and Grandma's help, of course!

Getting our 'going home' outfit on!

You forget how hard it is to put a tiny little thing into a giant carseat!  I finally just had to plop down on the ground to figure it out!

Just minutes after arriving home!

So serious!

We had a great time playing in the baby pool in the backyard!  We wanted to make sure Connor still got to have some fun.... even though we were exhausted!

Last weekend at Jamie's firm picnic in Shelbyville.

Our first outdoor walk all together!

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Logan Dean Brodsky

Proud to announce:
Logan Dean
Born July 27th at 12:57 PM.
8 pounds 5 ounces and 21 inches

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Tuesday is the Day! And We Are 39 Weeks!

Thursday, at my last doctor's appointment, I was 4 CM .... but unfortunately not 'in labor' like I was hoping!    I had even packed up my makeup and everything to put in my hospital bag that morning, just in case they sent me across the street to have a baby.   But no.

I'm still measuring perfect to a little small and the baby's heart rate is still in the upper 130's/lower 140's.  It's funny because, just like for the last few months, the baby moves wildly when they put the little hear rate monitor on my stomach so they have to fish around to find him!  What a stinker!!

SO, bottom line, we are scheduled for an induction on Tuesday morning at 6 AM!!  YAY!

I am bummed that they could not fit me in on Monday like we had initially discussed, but at least we now have a confirmed timeline of events .... unless he decides to come sooner!  In my head I keep thinking that Monday I'll probably just go into labor since that was the day we had decided to initially induce.  Who knows, maybe the the baby is an A-Type planner like me and had already made plans to come on tomorrow!  :)  We'll see!

Anyway, just wanted to give an update!

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

My Little CrewCuts Model!

Because I just haven't talked about my little Connor enough lately, I decided to make him feel super special by breaking out a new outfit from his "back-to-school" stash and take him shopping for new pool toys!  He also got a haircut this morning, which he seemed genuinely excited about!

Anyway, we had a good little day together (which I'm trying to cherish as much as possible while he is my only munchkin, even though I'm quite miserable right now!) and I wanted to share these pics of just how cute my little cheese-ball is!

Wow- he really cheesed it up for this one!

I told him to keep his eyes open for this one and he did!  Gotta love the nap-bed-head!

38 Weeks: It's Getting to Be "That Time"

Oh lordy, the nights have gotten to be bad news bears.  Everything hurts more at night, and that's not just when you are pregnant.  I spent from 2 AM to 5:30 AM last night up and laying on the couch, using a stopwatch to monitor contractions .... and dealing with nausea... working up a sweat trying to determine if I should wake up Jamie and have us jump in the car.   Unfortunately, the end result was just a loss of sleep (which is the last thing I need!) and no baby! 

Now, had I not been so tired and if it hadn't been storming, I might have insisted we head to the hospital since I know they would keep me and eventually get this baby out.  If tonight goes the same as last night, that might just be the case!

I know (believe me!) that's it is much easier to take care of this little bugger while he is in my tummy, but between the night-time contractions and bathroom trips, I am just ready to get this party started, because I'm already not sleeping well!  Why not at least have a cute baby to show for it!  Grrr!

Sunday night, I got so desperate to get something started, I had Jamie buy me a Volcano Taco from Taco Bell and then I went for a walk/jog around the block - at 11 PM!!  Still nothing.  Hmmmm....

I'll keep you posted!  If nothing happens naturally before next week, Monday is the big day!  Thanks for stopping by!

38 Weeks (T-Minus 7 Days!)

Friday, July 16, 2010

Ready for Launch... Quick Doctor's Appointment Update

Went to the doctor today and here's the deal...

I've now progressed to about 3cm .... which I kind of thought would be the case because I was at least 4cm at this point (37-38 weeks) with Connor AND I've been having contractions at night that are keeping me awake!  At least it hasn't been for nothing!

Still 60-70% effaced... so that hasn't changed much... thank goodness, because the doctor alluded to the fact that the thinner and softer the cervix, the faster you can dilate... which is not in my best interest as far as getting to the hospital and getting an epidural!

Head is still down and the heartbeat is strong.  My belly is measuring perfect for 37.5 weeks (maybe a touch small, which I think is a good thing!) and blood pressure was very good!  Still no swelling.... which is amazing in this heat!  Yay!

I'm in the "it could happen at any moment" phase of this pregnancy at this point.  For me, that means not going any further from the hospital than my house (which is already 20-25 minutes as it is!) and not going many places (like malls, etc...) by myself as I'm scared of what might happen.  The doctor informed me that, based on how quickly I had Connor - where I basically broke all the rules of first-time-labor, I should not even call the office first when I go into labor.... just head straight to the hospital and call them on the way!  Sounds like a plan.

As I lay here writing this, I feel like it really could happen at any moment.  What does that really mean?  Probably nothing.  I'm playing mind games with myself at this point... which is pretty normal!

IF I can make it to 39 weeks without going on my own, I confirmed today that we will be scheduling an induction the last week in July.  Now that I am 3cm and having my second baby, there really is no question that I should be a great candidate for an induction in 10 days!  Whaaa hoooo!  (but honestly, I'd be shocked if I can make it to July 26th!)

I'll keep ya posted!  Thanks for stopping by!

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

37 Weeks and Still Cookin'

Ugh, no, not dinner... a baby!

Looking forward to my doctor's appointment tomorrow to see if any progress has been made!  I've been eating a ton of pineapple and walking at night... both things that are thought to induce labor... maybe.

I really feel like we are ready for this baby ... and I'm definitely ready to not be pregnant anymore.  A friend of mine told me it would be like this with the second baby... aka: less lust with being pregnant, and more rush to just 'get it over with already'!  She was right.

If it weren't for the fact that I am so nervous about not making it to the hospital in time for my epidural, I would be even more anxious to get this party started .... but the reality of it is, I am concerned about that!   Most experts (and moms) agree the second labor and delivery is much faster than the first.  That's the last thing I need since Connor's labor (that I felt) was less than 4 hours!

There does, however, seem to be no hard facts or figures on having your second baby earlier or later or about the same as your first.  I would assume most people have their subsequent babies earlier, but that doesn't always seem to be the case.  From what I've read, there really isn't much correlation between pregnancies in regards to when you will go into labor (or how!)

The doctors and nurses I talk to say to "leave for the hospital" at the first twinge or cramp... but in your 37th / 38th week, you feel weird things going on in there all the time ... and it's especially exaggerated with your second child!  I can't go running to L&D every time I feel something!!

I did program my delivering hospital into the navigation in my car as a "favorite" so no matter where I am in the city, I can always just punch it in and find the fastest way to the hospital.  My bags are packed and in the car.  I'm making sure not to skip any daily grooming steps - although I know if I let my hair go dirty an extra day, didn't shower, or got a huge un-coverable zit on my face, I would for-sure go into labor ASAP!  It's the whole "don't wear dirty underwear, you never know if you might get in an accident and the entire hospital will know" scenario!

Anyway, we've had no imminent signs of labor starting soon, so I'll just assume I'll be here to give you an update on what we find out at the doctor visit tomorrow!  I definitely feel a ton of Braxton Hicks (which are actually real 'practice contractions' at this stage in the game) that are mildly uncomfortable at times, but with no rhyme or reason.  Other than that, nothing. 

37 Weeks + 2 Days

Friday, July 9, 2010

Tractors - and Baby Doctor Update

It was finally under 90 degrees yesterday (although still 90 percent humidity) so I walked with Connor up to the house being built in our neighborhood right now.  Connor has had his eye on the Caterpillar tractor sitting in front of it for a few days - so I promised him we could go visit it!  This was probably the highlight of his week - or life!  I only had my cell phone to take pics, so they weren't great.. but better than nothing!  If only we could figure out a way to rent one of these suckers for Connor's third birthday party this Fall!  Hmm...

What a cheesy smile!!  He was so pumped!

Yesterday Jamie and I headed to my OB for my 36 week appointment.  After waiting an HOUR in the waiting room (I always end up with appointments with the dang on-call docs!) we finally went back.   My blood pressure is great - 110 over 64,  baby's heartbeat is perfect - in the high 130's (doc tor says it starts lowering in the final weeks/days of pregnancy because the baby isn't able to move around quite as much ... I didn't know that) and I'm measuring perfect for 36 weeks.   The exam showed that I am about 1.5cm dilated and 60% effaced ... so not A LOT of progress, but better than nothing!  With the pain and weirdness I've been feeling lately, I thought I might be dilated more, but no.

We also discussed the possibility of induction at 39 weeks (if I make it that long) due to the extremely rapid labor I experienced with Connor.  We won't be able to make that determination until my 38 week appointment, based on where my body is at that point.  I kind of have a feeling I won't make it to that point... I told Jamie last night my guess (based on pretty much nothing) is that I will go into labor some time between next week's 37 week appointment and my 38 week appointment.  We'll see ... but either way, July 26th is likely D-Day if I don't go before! YAY!

Monday, July 5, 2010

Red, White, and Blue - 4 Weeks Till I'm Due!

So, we've made it to 36 weeks!  Woo hoo! 

In this final month, there will be 4 doctors appointments and exams... if I make it that long.  My next appointment is this Thursday, where hopefully we will get some good news (aka: dilation, effacement, etc...).  Connor was born 9 days early, so I'm hoping for at least that this time around.

This weekend has totally taken it out of me!  Between the heat and all the bad eating-out-food, I really need a couple days of rest - and getting back to our normal schedule, which means Connor going to bed before 11 PM!

Below are a few pics from Saturday and Sunday night fireworks - plus a sweet one of me in front of my new Swagger Wagon (my family thought this would be hilarious... haha) and my 36 week belly pic!

Riding on the "Comfy Cow" after getting ice cream!

Helping daddy pick out fireworks at Grandma and Grandpa's Saturday night...

Some where kind of loud!!

July 4th at our house

Dancing with our sparklers!

It got kind of dark, so you can't see how huge I am here... but you can here...

36 Weeks

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

35 Weeks and Finally Some Relief From the Heat!

First off, I'd like to say "Hallelujah" - it's finally NOT 100 degrees outside!  Woo hoo!  It's definitely helped me to feel better this week.

What's changed?  Still feeling tons of kicks, prods, and pokes.... which are getting stronger and harder to ignore!  For some reason, this little guy loves to roll all around while I'm driving... very distracting! 

I've also stopped going to the gym for the most part, opting for the basement gym (elliptical, weights, etc.. we pretty much have an entire gym in our basement anyway) where I can wear whatever I feel like wearing and no one is looking at me like: "Please do not have that baby right here on the floor!"  The looks were getting more annoying in the past month, so the basement seems like a better choice right now.  Also, as a germ-a-phobe, I'd rather Connor and I both avoid the gym this last month to help make sure we aren't sick for when the baby is born!

Tomorrow night Jamie and I are going to a mini-Lamaze class at Norton Hospital.  Don't mis-take me: I still TOTALLY plan having the epidural as soon as possible into the labor process.  However,  with how fast I went into full-blown labor with Connor, I really could have used some breathing techniques to keep me calm and focused (instead of crazed, dehydrated, passing out, etc...!)  We're taking this class to be as prepared as possible for anything that might happen, which, let's be honest, could be as drastic as not making it to the hospital!!

More on that later this week!

35 Weeks

Sunday, June 20, 2010

34 Weeks: Slowing Down A Bit

So, I don't have a 33 week belly pic like I normally would have, but here's what I DO have...

I was a bridesmaid in a dear college-friend's wedding last weekend...

At the reception .... with the hubby!

What a blast... and I'd like to say what a gorgeous, stunning bride she was and how honored I was to stand next to her and her new hubby on their big day!  (belly and all!)

The following afternoon, two other dear friends threw me a beautiful baby shower 'sprinkle' at a local Bed and Breakfast!  It was simple and wonderful!  I'm so lucky to be surrounded by such amazing friends and family...

My mom and I at the shower.

So that was week 33.  Also, no doctor's appointment last week, but I have one this week, so I'll keep you posted.  I'm kind of bummed because I was still trying to talk Jamie into paying for an extra ultrasound, or 3D ultrasound, just for fun - but I've been reading that after 34 weeks it's kind of pointless because the baby should be turned face in and head down by this point.  I'm still planning on asking about it at my appointment on Thursday, but I guess I might have missed my window! :(

34 Weeks (today!)

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Tick-Tock: Less Than 2 Months To Go!

We've officially made it to the 32-week, 8-month mark!  Woo hoo!

Now well into my third-trimester, this baby boy has started moving with significant meaning and purpose - if you know what I mean!  You can see my stomach moving from across the room - lurching from side to side and up and down.  At approximately 3.5 pounds, he is running out of room in there, so elbows, feet, knees, and his little bottom are poking out everywhere!

I haven't really started to feel any new symptoms, only worsening of existing ones.  Heartburn and reflux is worse, even on the increased dose of Nexium, and I've started having to use the restroom more often.   The Braxton-Hicks contractions are getting stronger and more noticeable, but the doctor doesn't seem concerned about that at all... plus it's more common to feel them earlier and stronger with your second pregnancy.   I do believe if you were a fly on the wall you might get a pretty good kick out of seeing me get up out of bed... it's getting harder and more like a 'rolling' technique at this point!

On the plus side, I haven't noticed any feet or ankle swelling yet, and my back and sciatica pain has wained, even while still working out at the gym.  I'm hoping I'll keep feeling this well through the end.  Fingers crossed!

I'm now on a every-two-week doctor appointment schedule, so my next one is this Thursday.  I'm still trying to talk Jamie into getting an extra ultrasound for the fun of it - possibly a 3D one, but he's not totally sold on it yet.  Bummer!  I just really want to see this little guy one more time before D-Day!!  Maybe a small part of me just wants to see that male genitalia again to confirm the sex ... even though we have no reason to question that this baby is a boy from looking at the first ultrasound!!

31.5 Weeks

32 weeks

Thursday, June 3, 2010

My New Swagger Wagon

So, we bit the bullet and got our new 2011 Toyota Sienna last week and I am loving it so far.

I was pretty much one of the last "hold out" mommies in the neighborhood who has (or is having) 2 kids, so for me to go "mini-van" is pretty serious.  I always said I would NOT get a mini-van until I was 30, but here I am, at 27, loving my new ride!

(this is not MY van, but exactly like mine - Blizzard White, Limited, AWD, etc...  real-life pics to come next week!  I thought it would be funny to take a picture of me really pregnant in front of the new van - oh the irony of it all!  So look for that next week!)

For any of you out there who might be considering a van, you might ask:

Why the Sienna?  Good question. 

I always thought of myself as more of a Honda Odyssey mom if I had to go 'van', but the Sienna's body style was updated for 2011 to actually look more like the Odyssey, plus the Sienna offers a lot more of the luxury / nice features that Honda doesn't.  For instance, the Smart Key system (you never have to use the key for anything!  Just have it in the diaper bag!), all-wheel-drive w/ run flat tires, automatic upgraded headlamps and wipers, dual screen DVD player in the back, and dual sunroof... so the kids have one in the back, too!  

Honda is dramatically updating the Odyssey body style for 2011, but it will likely still not have the features listed above and won't be available until Early Fall of this year.

Other things this puppy has: 180 degree backup camera, front and rear parking sensors, leather, power everything, built-in sunshades on the back windows, navigation, recliner-style second row seating, etc....  So basically, lots of cool stuff to make up for the not-so-cool mini-van stigma. 

Coming off an SUV, I must say this 'wagon' accelerates and handles better - so for me, it's an upgrade in performance, convenience, comfort.... and SPACE!!

Why not get a giant SUV?  Well, this was an easy decision. 

1.) Gas mileage, 2.) I hate driving something the size of a truck - parking spots and the garage are a pain! 3.) They sit up way too high for me to lift in Connor and a baby seat, 4.) No automatic sliding side doors ... which makes getting in an out in our garage SO much easier, and 5.) SUV's are way over-priced for what they are.... especially when you have small children. 

For the money a nice big SUV costs, I'd rather have a nice, practical mini-van for 5 years, and then get a nice sedan later on when we're not lugging 2 car seats and a double stroller around.   But that's just me.

Toyota has tried to go WAY above and beyond the standard advertising techniques to promote the 2011 Sienna, and as someone who said they would ONLY ever consider a Honda Odyssey, and I have to give kudos to the Toyota marketing team. Bravo!  You won me over! 

And, if you are on the fence about a van, just go test drive one and you'll be over the moon, as well!   To be able to have a full-sized car seat, infant carrier with base, double stroller, single stroller, and a bunch of other kid-crap in the car and not feel the least bit cramped or anything - it's a breath of fresh air for our family!!

Below I have 3 of my favorite marketing clips for the new Sienna.  If you haven't seen these, you've GOT to check them out!  There are even more on YouTube, but these are the best!  Hilarious!

"Swagger Wagon Music Video"

"Meet Mommy and Daddy"

"Playdate Copy Cat" (this is my favorite!)

Thanks for stopping by, more pics to come soon!

Thursday, May 27, 2010

29.... 30... and Counting

Quick post with some belly pics today!  Busy busy busy ..... and hot hot hot!!  Plus, Connor is now officially on summer vacay... so that means less me-time (aka: less blog time!)
29 Weeks

30 Weeks
(not the best outfit choice for comparison, but I was lazy!)

Thanks for stopping by, more exciting posts to come... promise!

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Thought I Would Never Say These Words...

We're getting a mini-van!

Yep, you read that correctly. 

I always said I would never get one until I was at least 30... which I'm not... so this is a real shocker to my own system.  But...

As it turns out, I feel like an SUV is not exactly the mom-mobile I thought it was.  It's hard to get Connor in and out of, and because I refuse to drive a huge, monstrosity of an SUV, the size that I am happy with (what I have now) barely holds my new one-and-a-half stroller.  And, with our awesome new Britax infant seat installed (which I'm kind of obsessed with!), the passenger seat has to be moved all the way up!

Soooo, that got me to thinking ... thinking dirty dirty thoughts ... about looking into a mini-van.

2010 Honda Odyssey

Now, the Honda Odyssey was always in my head as the only van I would ever consider, but since the new 2011 Sienna hit the streets, that's now our front-runner choice!  It has everything the Odyssey does, plus a ton of the extra-nice options that I'm used to with my car now.  And after a long test-drive with the fam, trying out and playing with all the fun things a van has to offer (and there is really just too much to mention!) I am totallly SOLD on getting a van ... and now I want it sooner rather than later!  It's going to make my life SOOOO much easier... especially with the second little one on the way!

2011 Toyota Sienna

Why am I telling you all this?  I guess it makes me feel better to get it out there - I feel like it's a deep dark secret  that I'm carrying around and it feels better to get it off my chest!

So, I'll keep you posted on when the big day will be .... we just have to sell my car first!  It will be a sad day .... but momma likey the mini-van .... at least for the next few years!

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

28 Weeks - I'm Complaining .... You Were Warned!

We have officially hit the third trimester. Yay!  And I have to say, there is a big difference between my first and second pregnancy.  I've found myself already complaining that I want this to be over with.  Then I feel bad because I know this is the last time I'll be pregnant, so I should enjoy it (ahh, the beginning of the 'mommy guilt' ... it starts before the baby is even born!)  Here's what's be going on...

This baby is a freakin' acrobat.  Seriously.  I do not remember this with Connor.  I remember movement, but nothing to this extent.  With this little guy, he rolls and jumps around so much that it makes my stomach hurt and literally shakes the bed at night!  ahh!  I mean, I'm glad that the baby is moving so much because it's a good sign, but this is crazy!  And when it's not a crazy circus going on in there, it feels like that feeling you get in your stomach when you have a bad stomach virus and something 'bad' is about it happen... you know what I mean.

Anyway, just add this to the constant heartburn, nighttime reflux, and going to the bathroom every 10 minutes and .... I'm done. 

Is it July yet? 

And don't think I haven't done this math....

9 more weeks until the baby is 37 weeks and considered full-term. 

I never really felt this way with Connor .... I think because we were scared to death of what our life was going to be like once he was born, so I was willing to put up with any symptoms of him being inside me!!  But this time around, I know we're ready and I'm feeling anxious to get the rough first 3 months over with!

Alright, I'm finished complaining!  Thanks for listening!

The good news is, my glucose test was fine, and everything else health wise is really ok.  I started going to a physical therapist for my back and sciatica pain a couple weeks ago and the improvement has been like 95% with just 3 consultations... awesome!    Here we are at 28 weeks...

Monday, May 3, 2010

27 Weeks Baby!

I had an OB appointment last Thursday, which included the 1 hour glucose screening.  I'm guessing everything went great with that since I didn't receive a phone call the next day.  Yay!  It's a truly disgusting test where you drink a small bottle of, in my case orange, mysterious liquid, wait an hour, then have blood drawn.  Not a big deal, but the liquid tastes nasty and gave me a mean sugar rush headache and subsequent crash an couple hours later.  Blah!

The visit with the doc went very well.  I saw the same doctor who delivered Connor for the first time since his birth, which was a nice treat.  We discussed the Braxton Hicks contractions I've been having since about 24 weeks... not a big deal as long as they are not consistent or painful, and I need to drink more water.  Done.  My tummy is measuring exactly where it needs to be for the August 1st due date they gave me at our first ultrasound.  So I guess that eases any worries I had about being too 'small' for 6.5 months... not that I was really worried.

As I've mentioned before, this little guy seems to be doing circus acts with much gusto within my abdomen... to the point where it actually stops me in my tracks sometimes because I simply can't believe how fast and hard he is moving!  Well, it seems I'm not just imagining this.  The doctor could only barely get the heartbeat (which was in the mid 150's) because the baby was flipping and flopping around so much!  Even the doc was amused at all the movement!  My bladder on the other hand, much less amused!

So, everything is chugging along just as it should I suppose.  The next thing I need to decide is if I want to do a 3D/4D ultrasound or not.  It's $150, and Jamie is not totally sold on the idea of  it for whatever reason, so I don't know.  My only reason for wanting to do it is to verify the "boy parts" again, but I'm really pretty confident with the initial pics we got.

Anyway, here is the latest belly pic....

27 Weeks

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Before and After 'Big-Boy-Room' Pics and Derby Hat Parade


(yucky office before pics)


(fresh off-white pant ... double closet doors, and the single room goes into the play/bonus room ... which is not yet fit for picture taking I'm afraid!)

(I love this color of blue!   That's his new night stand, but I need to still get pics of the matching dresser and bookshelf... we didn't have them yet in this picture!  The football lamp is an item we won at the Chance School Auction this year!  Rug is from Target ..... gotta love Target!)

(And, for the main event.... his new big-boy bed!!  Bedding and bed is all from Pottery Barn ... freakin' love pottery barn!)

(And, this is Connor helping in the process.  Yes, he has on a dress shirt and no pants!  ;)

In case you aren't on the up-and-up regarding the Kentucky Derby, it was yesterday.  And, if you live in Louisville or the surrounding area, it's something we celebrate for at least 2 weeks in advance.  This year, Connor walked in the Derby Hat Parade at his school!  Had to be the cutest thing I've ever seen!

The cutest!

Waving to the camera... but my zoom was on too much!

Forget couture!  Isn't that the cutest horsey-hat he made himself!

At the Great Steamboat Race the Wednesday before Derby!