Pregnancy: Week 12

This week:
Baby is the size of a lime!
Baby is developing his/her reflexes, and will move if poked - but let's not poke my baby, k?
Arms, legs, and fingers are growing out.

Weight Gain:  I have no idea.  We don't own a scale, and I haven't been weighed since my last prenatal appointment, which was at 10 wks and 6 days (during which I had lost a pound).  I think I'm going to need a new bra soon though, because those girls are growing!

Stretch Marks:  None yet.  Let's hope it stays that way.

Movement:  This is the best part:  when I wash or rub lotion on my belly, I can see the baby move!!  It's so awesome.  The baby seems to like to travel to the left side of my belly and cause a bulge there for a few seconds before moving back into place.  I can't feel anything, but it's definitely visible.

Food Cravings:  Well, we did just get a Zaxby's in town, so I begged hubby to go there with me for lunch.  All I really cared about was their hot honey mustard sauce though.  I'd eat that stuff on cardboard and enjoy it.

Showing:  Let's put it this way:  The shorts that I wore on Monday, I washed and was going to wear again on Friday.  Didn't happen.  I couldn't button them!

Morning Sickness:  None all week!  Whoo-hoo!  Good riddance!

Wedding Rings:  Still on.

Belly Button Status:  still an innie, but where it's normally pretty ovular (wow, spell check says that's a real word!), it's now just a big circular hole.

Mood:  Watch out.  I'm terribly grumpy.  Poor Hubby catches it for no reason at all.  I don't know what's going on, but I get so cranky about any little thing.  I'm almost down right mean, but I can't help it.  (Don't worry, I've apologized to Hubby lots, and he knows it's hormones).

Exercise:  Walking.  I walk about 2-3 miles almost every morning.  We went for a 5 mile bike ride Monday (before Zaxby's - so that's sort of canceled out).  I've really been slacking on the prenatal yoga, and I'm so disappointed in myself about that.  I really need to get on it, because I feel like it's so important in having a successful natural birth.
Boy or Girl:  No idea.  We're not going to find out until the baby is born, so I've been calling it "Baby Boo Boo."  Sometimes I want to call it "Big Bird" though - Full House Represent!


Courtney Borgan Photography

I'm really excited about this week about doing our first Sponsor Spotlight.  Not only because it's the first one, but because I get to introduce you to Courtney Borgan Photography!  

Courtney and I go all the way back to the first day of 8th grade, when we were both the new girls at school who became friends right away.  Not only is Courtney a military wife and mom of 3 of the most adorable kids you've ever seen, she's also an amazing photographer.  Her work is absolutely beautiful.

Marshmallow Mudpie:  Tell me about your company.

Courtney Borgan Photography:  I am a baby, child, and family photographer right now based out of Beaufort, SC.  I try to aim for more lifestyle photos. While there are a couple of semi-posed shots in each session, I try to photograph the relationships and the individual personalities.

Marshmallow Mudpie:  How did you get into photography?

Courtney Borgan Photography:  Like most things in my life, my kids are and have been my driving force.  My oldest daughter was born while my husband was deployed and we did not have the option of Skype or any kind of face time.  So every day I would take at least one picture of her to email to her dad.  From there, my love for photography grew.

Marshmallow Mudpie:  What do you love most about being a photographer?

Courtney Borgan Photography:  I absolutely LOVE watching people's reactions to their photos.  Seeing people smiling from ear to ear or crying tears of joy (I have had that happen a few times) while looking at something I helped to create for them, is so rewarding and fulfilling.  It makes me smile just thinking about it.

Marshmallow Mudpie:  What areas do you serve, and what's the best way to get in touch with you?

Courtney Borgan Photography:  You can visit me on Facebook at Courtney Borgan Photography, or check out my website at  Right now, I'm located in Beaufort, SC, but I love to travel and am also available in Central Florida. 


Pregnancy: Week 11 - Dealing with Cold/Flu While Pregnant

Week 11 began with me feeling like I'd been hit by a truck.  Little Guy had been sick the week before, and my poor, weak little immune system took a huge beating.  My body's been so busy creating a space for the new little one to grow, and giving it all my nutrients to survive, that it's seems there just weren't enough left for "mamadukes" over here to fend off a sickness - and let me tell you, this was some rough stuff.  The only bonus I could find, is that while I was super sick, my morning sickness stayed away.

Stuffy/runny nose, congestion, swollen glands, fatigue, fever, chills, sweats, you name it.  I stayed in bed or on the couch for nearly 5 days, only getting up to pick Little Guy up from school.  He was really great about letting me just lay and watch movies with him in the afternoons.  I'm also so thankful for my parents, because they took him to their house for the weekend while Hubby was working so I could rest.

So here's the deal with being sick when you're pregnant.  Don't do it.  Seriously.  It totally stinks.  You can't really take anything to help you.  I've read that it's ok to take Robitussin, but I'm not really sure if that applies during the first trimester (when baby is so vulnerable), so I took nothing.  Nothing!  Well, yes, I do want a medal, thank you.

If you do get a cold during the first trimester, there are some natural remedies you can try.  Here's what I did:

1. ran a humidifier in our room 

(we have this one by Crane)


  2. rub Vick's Vapor rub liberally on the bottoms of my feet, and then put a pair of socks on 

3. drank lots of water, tea (with honey - and maybe some lemon), oj, and broth.  The only "food" I made myself eat while sick was watermelon (more liquids and plenty of vitamin C) since eating made me really tired and out of breath.

4. take teaspoons of honey mixed with cinnamon periodically throughout the day. 

5. continued to take my prenatal vitamin

6. took a Tylenol (acetaminophen) when I had a fever 
*This is the only pain reliever that's ok to take while pregnant.  DO NOT take Asprin (Advil), Ibuprofen (Motrin), or Naproxen (Aleve) while pregnant!!!!

7. got lots and lots of rest

So, on the 6th day I still had some cold symptoms, but all in all, felt much better.  As in, could get up and tackle all the housework that was awaiting my return.  Wouldn't ya know, though?  The morning sickness came back that very morning.  I guess you really can't have your cake and eat it too, huh?

*Do you have any suggestions for natural cold remedies while pregnant?


Pregnancy: Week 10 and Why We're Using a Birth Center

During week 10, I had my first "official" appointment at the birth center.  It was wonderful!  I can't get over the difference between the birth center that I'm using for this pregnancy and the ob/gyn I used for my previous pregnancy.
while pregnant with Little Guy

Let me start by giving you a little background.  When I was pregnant with Little Guy, I had absolutely no idea what I was doing.  I found a local ob/gyn (a very nice man) who was part of a big practice with multiple locations in the Orlando area.  The appointments usually went like this:

Walk in, sign in, wait to be called back.
Get called back and weighed and told to put on your gown and wait for the doctor.
Wait about 20 minutes in your paper gown alone in the exam room until the doctor and nurse finally come in.
Make about 1 minute of small talk with the doctor, get examined, about 1 more minute of small talk with the doctor, and he leaves.
Get dressed, head back out to the lobby, arrange your payment, schedule next appointment, anddd done.
I doubt they even knew my name without their clipboard.

When it was time to have the baby, I went to Winnie Palmer hospital (which is a newer, beautiful hospital that specializes in women and children), had a very great nurse (for the second half of labor- I don't really remember the nurse I had before shift change), and a woman doctor (who seemed nice enough) whom I'd never met before "caught" Little Guy and stitched me up.

I told the new nurse that came in after delivery, that I wanted to breastfeed (my doctor hadn't talked to me at all about it though, so I knew virtually nothing except for the logistics).  She said, "ok," and left the room.  When she came back in to check on us again and asked how it was going, I told her I was having a little trouble, so she just got a bottle of formula and had me feed it to the baby and told me I could try again when I got home.
Gee, thanks for your help and expertise and caring.  Was there a number I could call?  An organization I could talk to?  Would it have taken you more than 2 minutes to get me a pamphlet or something? That's what bothered me most about my experience.  The lack of care. Not medical care.  Human care. As a person to another person. A soul to another soul.  That's what I was desperately missing from my birth experience.

I did end up trying for about a month, breastfeeding and pumping, but since I knew nothing, I eventually gave up and went to formula full-time.

I am in no way blaming or shaming any of the people above.  It wasn't a horrible experience, and Little Guy was born healthy and fine. And I'm not criticizing anyone who chooses to go the ob/gyn/hospital route with their pregnancy.  I've just chosen to try a new route this time around.

It's one of those situations where, once you've seen, you can never "unsee."  Once you know, you can never "unknow," and I know that birth could be a much different experience.  I have a friend that had natural births in a birth center, and her birth story was so inspiring.  My eyes really opened when I watched the documentary Pregnant In America. I followed that up with Ricki Lake's:  The Business of Being Born and More Business of Being Born.  

Here they are if you'd like to check them out.  

The documentaries basically set out to inform people that pregnancy is not a medical condition.  It's a natural condition.  You do not automatically need a doctor to have a baby.  Women have been having babies since the beginning of time, it's a natural process that our bodies were designed to perform.

Yes, I am fully aware that sometimes complications arise in which a doctor's care is needed, and I am thankful that we have doctors for such circumstances.  I just feel that they don't need to be the automatic go-to for a healthy pregnancy.

So....back to my birth center and how much Hubby and I love it.  He raves about it as soon as we get in the car each time we leave the center.  The ladies there are real women.  They want to know how you're doing.  They share their past experiences with you.  They believe in you, and your power to know and choose what is right for you.

Humanity example:  at this 10 week appointment, we were talking about my nausea, and the midwife gave me a bag of crystallized ginger to take home.  She then proceeded to give me a bag-full of her own blend of loose leaf prenatal tea to try.  As I was leaving, we were talking about increased gas during pregnancy, and she had Hubby and I try these Papaya Enzyme Tablets that I mentioned in my last pregnancy update. My previous ob/gyn never took the time out and care, let alone the expense to give me anything like that during my visits.

Here's the best way I can sum it up:
Going to the doctor when you're pregnant is like going to the doctor when you're pregnant.
Going to a birth center when you're pregnant is like going to your incredibly knowledgeable Aunt's house where all your incredibly knowledgeable cousins happen to be as well.  They know a ton, have lots of experience, and they actually care about you.

We're so glad we've made this decision.

Ladybird LnPhotobucket

Pregnancy: Weeks 7, 8, and 9, + a Recipe!

Week 7:
By now, my morning sickness has kicked into full gear.  I can't, for the life of me, figure out what's triggering it. All I know, is that doesn't seem to be smell or taste related.  It's just that anything at all might trigger a gag reflex and send me spiraling down into the abyss of sickdom.  I can't take very long showers, because the steam has set me off quite a few times, and if my nose is slightly runny - watch out.

Week 8:
This week I had an initial consultation with my midwife, and I love her!  All the ladies at the birth center we've chosen are awesome! I have so much to say about them and having a natural birth, I think it will have to be a separate post.

The down side of this week is:  such bloating!  I even told the midwife I'm worried there might be 8 babies in there or something.  I'm seriously wondering if that may be the case.  Nausea and morning sickness are still in  full swing.  Boo.

Week 9:
My bestest best friend in school used to burp all the time.  (I promise this is relevant.)  I mean all the time.  Like, these little hiccupy burps. I always remember thinking, "Who on earth has that many burps in them?"  Well, hello pregnancy.  I'm now filled with those hiccupy burps.  They come out all day long.  Fun.
The good news is, my midwife told me about Papaya Enzyme.  It's these little chewable tablets, similar to tums, except safe during pregnancy.  They taste like papaya-flavored sweet tarts with less sugar and more chalk.  I'm going to give them a try and see if they work for me.

I've figured out why all the bloating.  Everything that's going in, is not coming out.  Constipation is a common problem for women during pregnancy, since all your organs are shifting around to make room for the baby and his/her little "home."  Hello prune juice (blech).
There is a much tastier solution than prune juice though. I wanted to share with you a recipe for what my mom calls, "haystacks." These puppies are delicious, and will help make you "go."
You will need:
Fiber One cereal (this comes 2 bags to a box, you will need 1 bag)
chocolate chips (12 oz)
peanut butter (3 tbsp)
a large bowl
parchment paper

Place chocolate chips in bowl.  
Plop peanut butter on top.  
Melt chocolate chips as you normally would.  
(I use the microwave 30 method.  Microwave 30 seconds, stir, microwave 30 more seconds, stir, keep repeating until chocolate chips are melted.) 
Pour bag of Fiber One cereal into bowl of melted chocolate and peanut butter.  Fold mixture until all the cereal is coated.  
Drop scoops in desired size of mixture onto parchment paper (the size pictured above is 1/3 cup).
You may allow to harden on the counter or opt to refrigerate.  If you place them in the fridge, they will harden much faster, but will condensate when you take them out.  It's your call.

 *If you try them, let me know how you like them! 

Whatever You Want Wednesday

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