Tuesday, December 22, 2009

36 weeks...the home stretch!!

Baby girl is looking good and measuring well!  She is head down and now we are just waiting for her to make her grand entrance into this world!!  We are so excited!  I have been playing baby a lot with Ella to help her get used to the idea of having another baby around.  So far, there has been a LOT of jealous whining, poking of baby's eyes, ripping baby out of my arms, picking her up by the neck, throwing her on the floor, and covering her head with a blanket.  Is this normal for a 16 month old??  When does the gentle, nurturing instinct kick in?  I may have to keep baby girl at a very safe distance from her little/big sister Ella :).  Good thing big sister Sophie has some experience and will be a great example for Ella!

Here is a picture of my basketball shaped belly (as many people have told me) and the latest stats...

How far along? 36 weeks

Total weight gain: 31 lbs.

Maternity clothes? yes...I only have one pair of jeans that fit comfortably now

Stretch marks? nothing new

Sleep: still waking from aches and pains and having to pee

Movement: a ton...she is still poking and pushing although I can tell she is starting to run out of room in there.

Food cravings: still sweets unfortunately...I can see the affect on my thighs :)

Gender: girl

Name: We have narrowed it down to Lily or Mary for a first name and the middle name is still a work in progress.  Feel free to vote and help us pick one!

Belly Button in or out? out

What I miss: a few things, but it is worth the sacrifice :)

What I love most: that she is almost here now!

Weekly Wisdom: stretch muscles, take deep breaths, careful with body movements and heavy lifting

Thursday, December 10, 2009

34 weeks and counting down...

We are so close now to meeting baby girl and I just know these weeks through the Christmas season will help the time fly even faster!

Here are the stats...

How far along? 34 weeks

Total weight gain:  29 lbs. (I am 2 lbs. heavier than I was with Ella at this point in the pregnancy)

Fundal Height (size of uterus):  33 cm. (I was at 34 cm. last time at this point)

Maternity clothes?  Of course!  

Stretch marks?  Same as before...nothing new thank goodness :)

Sleep:  Still waking a couple of times at night, but I am usually able to fall back asleep

Movement:  Wow!  This one is the most active in the womb!  The other night I put a cup on my belly and she was moving it around and poking out so hard that she was able to tip it off several times...quite amazing!

Food cravings:  chocolate chip cookies fresh from the oven and a glass of milk at night

Gender:  girl

Name:  Mary Kate, Lily Claire, or Emilie Claire.  I also like Sadie which means princess, but I am not sure what Clint thinks about it.

Belly Button in or out? out

What I miss:  energy...I have been really tired lately

What I love most:  still the baby belly (even though it is getting bigger and bigger) and feeling her move although she is so strong that sometimes she takes my breath away with a kick!

Weekly Wisdom:  Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights...

For the record...at 32 weeks and 2 days, baby girl dropped down a bit.  I could tell because my heartburn/reflux was better, but I started having sciatic nerve pain through my right butt cheek, hip and leg. I was able to limp around during the day, but by the evening I could barely walk.  On Friday, Nov. 27th (the day after Thanksgiving) I was unable to put any pressure on my right leg making it impossible to walk or move at all.  It was incredibly painful...worse than natural childbirth in my opinion.  Clint had to lift me up and carry me to the bathroom if I needed to go.  I am so grateful that this happened over the holiday weekend because Clint was home from work and he took care of all the meals and the girls.  I felt so helpless and awful.  I was able to get around some with assistance by Sunday afternoon, but I had another serious flare up on Monday and I was unable to move again.  It hurt if anyone even touched me so I was so depressed not being able to snuggle with my girls.  Finally, by the following Wednesday, I was able to stand on my own two legs and get around.  I have been taking it very slow since then and seeing the chiropractor and praying a lot.  I have not had another flare up for a whole week now...praise the Lord!  I hope and pray that I make it through the rest of this pregnancy without any more problems!

Monday, December 7, 2009

Reading, Writing, Arithmetic...Oh My!!!

Warning:  this blog post is full of praise towards Sophie's homeschool accomplishments from the heart of her very proud teacher and mama.  My intention is for this to serve as some kind of progress report so I can remember this first 3 months of homeschooling. 

I am so proud of Sophie!!!  She is officially reading up to 4 letter words and is able to sound out some larger ones too.  She can read beginner books on her own and I know she is amazed by her own accomplishments.  Sophie's writing skills have greatly improved as well and she is finally confident using all her lowercase letters and even writing short sentences.  Kindergarten level math was a breeze for her and she is quickly advancing through 1st grade math now.  She counts and writes numbers up to 100 one number at a time and by tens, knows the value of coin money and how to add it together, and is excelling in addition and subtraction without the use of visual aids.  I can see where her strength is going to be!  It is so exciting to watch Sophie learn and make these important connections.

Sophie still needs some improvement with her handwriting as she tends to become sloppy or write a few letters or numbers backwards when she gets tired and when she tries to go too fast, but she is really working on taking her time and focusing.

I have to admit that I was very nervous to take on the responsibility of homeschooling.  It was rough in the beginning as we both struggled through frustrations, but I am finally able to see some of the fruits of this labor.  There are still days when Sophie grumbles about doing school work, but that just challenges me to be more creative in how I present the information.  Sophie does not learn well under the "traditional" model so I am glad that I am able to help her learn according to how her brain processes things.

Art is still her favorite "subject" and the detail in her drawings really amazes me.  She is also learning how to play the piano and is able to figure out simple songs by ear.  I will definitely continue to nurture her love and skill in creative arts.

I have noticed a change in attitude in Sophie as well.  She helps out without being asked and has shown real maturity in her compassion towards others and her desire to give.  It is hard to stay calm when her little sister has just torn apart something special, but Sophie has been very understanding and loving about these things.  Sophie is learning a lot about God's Word and His character as well and she has memorized a few scripture verses along the way.  I know this is why her attitude and behavior have made such positive changes.

Sophie does seem to be closer to tears than usual and is expressing a lot of emotion.  I was talking to a couple of other moms of 6 or near 6 year old girls and they described some of the same behaviors as I am seeing in Sophie.  She is just so sensitive right now.  The other day she found out that the Bear Rock Cafe at Cary Crossroads is closed and moving locations and she cried because this was her favorite place to eat lunch with her "partner" Clinty on his lunch breaks from work.  She also gets really whiny and tearful when she is tired or hungry which reflects her behavior from back when she was 2 or 3 years old.  I am thinking this must be something developmental, but I haven't really researched it yet.  

Ok.  I think I am done with the first unofficial progress report from our first quarter of homeschool.  I am looking forward to this next quarter and hoping that we are able to stay on track with the addition of another baby coming soon!