25 Week Pregnancy Update

The past 6 months have been a whirlwind, with selling our home, moving across the state, Duncan studying for/taking his Boards, the transition to Duncan starting rotations… and getting pregnant with Baby #2! This pregnancy has been pretty different from Lively’s since before it even really started; I always knew I wanted our next baby to be close in age to Lively (literally, I told Duncan minutes after I delivered Lively that I was ready for another), but with Duncan’s schedule and the timing of tests, we decided the best option for our family was to wait a little while. Once we did decide we were ready for another baby/the timing was better, it took us a little longer to get pregnant this time around. For those 7 months, it was a constant reminder that God’s timing is best, and there’s always valuable lessons to learn in the waiting seasons (which is especially valuable to me, since I’m not a patient waiter).

The first trimester, I was a whole different level of tired (I didn’t realize how much more exhausting it was being pregnant while chasing a toddler around); I couldn’t make it through the day without falling asleep and napped with Lively most days (so productivity around the house was at an all-time low). Thankfully, once I got into the second trimester, my energy level picked back up (which I was beginning to doubt would ever happen). One pregnancy side effect I’ve had this time around that I didn’t before is getting carsick; I’ve felt carsick multiple times and even thrown up once from it (the first time in my life that’s every happened).

During my pregnancy with Lively, we moved to a new state for Duncan to start schooling when I was 30 weeks pregnant, so I hardly knew my doctor there and had never seen the doctor who delivered her. This pregnancy is a lot different in that I’ve had/will have the same doctor the whole time, and I really like him!

Another difference this time around is how much faster my belly popped/how much faster the weight-gain came. I’d been warned this would probably happen but didn’t really realize how much faster until I started experiencing it, haha. I’m just trying my best to work out a few days a week (the elliptical and prenatal workout videos are my favorite) and trying to be more conscious of carb/sugar intake, now that I don’t really have any food aversions this trimester.

When I was pregnant with Lively, I enjoyed pregnancy, but I was so eager for her arrival that I would check my pregnancy app on my phone every day and time felt like it dragged until she arrived; this time around, it is FLYING (I’m 25 weeks as of yesterday)! While I’m excited for our SON to arrive, I’m really just savoring this pregnancy and these last few months of being a family of 3. Thanks for reading my little pregnancy update!

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Alex

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Post-Baby Clothing

Towards the end of my pregnancy it felt like my wardrobe was super limited, as hardly anything fit anymore (maybe a couple of t-shirts and a couple pairs of Nike tempos). It made me excited to have a few more clothing options after Lively was born. I didn’t realize, though, how many things either wouldn’t fit the same for a while or that I wouldn’t be able to wear while breastfeeding.

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It honestly didn’t even cross my mind that I wouldn’t be able to wear hardly any of my dresses out in public as long as I’m still breastfeeding. Thankfully, off-the-shoulder dresses are popular right now, and they make it SO easy to breastfeed! *Side note, as a 90’s baby, I’m so happy seeing tie dye back in style!*

One of my favorite breastfeeding tips I’ve heard is to wear a strapless swimsuit top with strapless, off-the-shoulder, or thin-strapped shirts and dresses.

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If you’re breastfeeding, pregnant, or neither of those, PinkBlush has so many cute and flattering clothing options! They make you feel comfortable and confident in your own skin, no matter where you are in your pregnancy journey.

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On a different note, Lively is obsessed with water… the pool, ocean, bath… any water! So we took her to this creek a couple of days ago, and she had a blast! Ha, she kept trying to sit down in the water and splash around (her clothes were definitely drenched by the end). We love our little water baby!

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Dress: PinkBlush

 

Always and forever,

Alex

The Best Change

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It’s amazing how quickly and drastically your world changes when you become a parent… in the best way! I guess you technically become a parent when you become pregnant, but it didn’t really hit me until I saw our beautiful daughter for the first time. The instant love I felt for our baby took my breath away.

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The last couple of months leading up to Lively’s arrival were a big transition, with moving to a new city and Duncan beginning his journey through medical school. We knew we wanted me to be able to stay home with Lively Mae once she was born, so that left a couple of months leading up to her arrival for quite a bit of free time. It was totally different from the fast-paced lifestyle we lived before, and for the first time in a long time I had to be intentional about finding things to fill my time and pursuing new friendships; that being said, I cleaned the house pretty much constantly, so it was nearly spotless (it was definitely a tangible way for me to feel like I was accomplishing something). I walked every morning with Cannon and a friend and her dog, and other than that, I really didn’t have set plans most days; about once a week I’d have a doctor’s appointment, but that was basically the extent of what I had to do.

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As much as I enjoyed those couple months of rest and being able to get settled into our new home, it made me even more excited for our baby’s arrival. And now that she’s here, my life has changed all over again! I love that my days revolve around taking care of our precious Lively. Even though it’s challenging (I’m sore; I don’t get much sleep, because she wakes up multiple times at night to eat, and even when she’s not awake I check constantly to make sure she’s still breathing… I think I’m a little paranoid since she’s our first; learning how to feed her isn’t as easy as it seems and is a little painful at first), I wouldn’t change a thing! Nothing compares to the sweet moments when she looks up into my eyes or wraps her tiny fingers around mine. I cherish how happy she is in the mornings and the cute cooing sounds she makes.

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Our lives are changing once again, but it is the best change I could imagine. I’m blown away by my husband; he goes to his classes all day (which is hard enough in itself), then comes home and is so intentional with Lively Mae and me. The three of us snuggle up on the couch, while he holds her and talks to me about my day and his. He studies hard, but takes breaks to feed her a bottle in the evening and just spend time with her. He prays over her each night, and I know without a doubt he cherishes this time and our daughter the same way I do. The love we have for our daughter is something we’ve never felt before, and I now have a better idea of what people mean when they say God’s love for you is revealed in a whole new way when you have a child.img_0865

The house isn’t nearly as clean and there are always things left on my to-do list at the end of the day, but I would never want it any different. I would a million times rather have my day filled with baby snuggles and prayers for our Lively (and a fair share of dirty diapers, spit up, and baby cries). We are so grateful to our Heavenly Father and all of the amazing people He’s placed in our lives who support us, encourage us, and who love our daughter. A special thank-you to our moms who took turns coming to stay with us the past two weeks and helped with everything; they’ve made the transition so much smoother! More pictures of our girl and her birth story to come soon!

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Always and forever,

Alex

Cute & Comfy Maternity Robe

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Well, I’ve officially made it to 37 and a half weeks! I really cannot believe Lively could arrive at any time. This week I packed her diaper/hospital bag and made a list of what I will need for my hospital bag (I’m sure I’m overpacking… both because that’s how I am, and since this is my first baby, I’d rather bring too much than not have something I want/need). Duncan and I also installed Lively’s carseat base in the car; it’s so weird seeing it in there every time I go to run an errand, but I love it! 🙂

Another highlight of the week was receiving this adorable delivery/nursing maternity robe! I knew I wanted a comfy robe for in the hospital and afterwards, and this one is exactly what I was looking for. I’ve gotten quite a bit of other cute maternity clothes from Pink Blush, and this robe is definitely one of my favorites! None of their clothing has disappointed; if you are looking for maternity clothes, they are a great resource.

Thankfully, my robe came in just in time, as I’m starting to pack my own hospital bag! I love how it is made of lightweight material, is super soft, and the feminine, yet simple, added touch of the lace trim.

Duncan finishes his first big week of medical school tests on Friday, so any time after that would be perfect for little miss Lively Mae’s arrival! 😉 I’m excited to see Duncan become a dad and already know he will be the most unbelievable and intentional dad in the world, because of the way he loves me so well. Lively is a lucky girl, and I know his love will give her a glimpse of her Heavenly Father’s unfathomable love for her.

Thank you for all of your support and prayers! We’ll keep you updated!

 

Always and forever,

Alex

 

T-Minus 1 Month Until Baby!

 

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I am currently 36 weeks and 5 days pregnant with our first baby girl! Pregnancy has flown by faster than I could have imagined, and we are so excited to meet our daughter. It’s surreal being to the point where I go in every week for a doctor’s appointment and knowing she could be born at any time… tomorrow, next week, 2 weeks… anytime within the month (Duncan has his first big week of exams next week, so just hopefully not next week :/ )!

Last week at my 35-week appointment I was dilated 1 cm and 50% effaced, and this week at my 36-week appointment, I found out I’ve dilated to a 3! Hopefully she keeps progressing at this rate, but there’s no way to really know. I don’t think I’ve felt any contractions yet, and everyone says I’ll know when I do.

This week I’m focusing on some final preparations for Lively Mae’s arrival. I’ve been washing her crib sheets, changing pad cover, swaddle blankets, nursing cover, baby sling, clothes, breast pump parts, etc. I’ve been looking through directions on how to properly set up her carseat & load it in the car, put my pump together, and all kinds of other little things that aren’t as self-explanatory as I would have thought.

Cannon and I are still going on our daily 2-mile walk with a friend and her dog, which is definitely a highlight in our day. I love getting out in the mornings and getting some good late-pregnancy exercise.

We’re anxiously awaiting Lively Mae’s arrival, while treasuring this last little bit of time as a family of 2… well, technically 3 counting Cannon 😉 (and of course he counts!). Cannon is amazing with kids, and I know he’ll love Lively!

A major highlight this week was Duncan surprising me with a Snoogle body pillow (thank you to Lively’s “Uncle” Shil for introducing Duncan to this brilliant invention)! For those who don’t know what this is… you’ve got to look them up. Whether you’re pregnant or not, it is the most comfortable pillow EVER! It’s made falling asleep at night and taking naps during the day so much easier.

Thanks for reading my update on the upcoming arrival of our little girl!

 

Always & forever,

Alex

What to Wear for a Hot Summer Pregnancy

My second trimester and half of my third trimester have taken place during the heat of the summer. It’s been one of the hottest, most humid summers I can remember… but I suppose that could partially be due to my little bun in the oven! One of the best parts about being pregnant this summer was working at our shaved ice trailer, Yeti’s Shaved Ice! Although there wasn’t air conditioning in the trailer, it always helped having a shaved ice at the end of the day to look forward to (especially since I’ve been craving shaved ice throughout my entire pregnancy) :). Since the majority of my summer was spent in the shaved ice trailer, I typically wore my Yeti’s Shaved Ice tank top with athletic shorts. This was super nice, because all of my athletic shorts still fit and the tank tops were a nice way to stay cool!

When not at work, it was a little harder to know what to wear. I didn’t want to spend all of my money on a new maternity wardrobe, but I did want to invest in some key pieces of clothing, since we want to have more children in the future. Over the past few months, I’ve invested in a few flowy shirts (I love these, because they can be worn during pregnancy, as well as after!), a couple of flowy dresses (also great for pregnancy and afterwards), a pair of maternity jeans (that can be rolled into capris), a white pair of maternity jeans, and one “fitted” maternity shirt. I didn’t buy many fitted maternity shirts, just because I wanted to be able to wear what I bought both pre- and post-baby, in order to save money. Most of the clothing I’ve bought during my pregnancy I’ve ordered from Pink Blush, an online maternity store. I love the way their clothing fits and have been happy with everything I’ve gotten from them! Just make sure to check the sizing chart on their website before placing an order, as most of their clothing runs a little big.

Since I carry our daughter pretty high, I’ve thankfully been able to wear all of the shorts I had pre-pregnancy. Many of the dresses, shirts, and tank tops I had before still fit, which has been really helpful, as well! The majority of the time, thanks to all the heat and humidity, I wear shorts and a tank top or a flowy dress. We’ve gone out on the lake and to the pool a couple of times, which is the perfect time to get some sun on the bump! 🙂 I definitely prefer a two-piece when pregnant, because it is not fun having tight clothing on your pregnant belly; a two-piece is much more comfortable!

Below are some of the outfits I’ve worn this summer (during the later half of my second trimester and first half of my third):

These photos were taken when I was 19 weeks pregnant. I didn’t have much of a bump, so I went with a more flowy top for our graduation party and this flowy maroon dress for graduation!

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This was at my brother and sister-in-law’s wedding. I was almost 21 weeks pregnant and still didn’t really have a baby bump I wanted to “show off,” so I wore this maxi dress!

IMG_9859This photo was taken on Father’s Day, which was still during my second trimester. I chose to wear another maxi dress, rather than trying to accentuate my mini baby bump.

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I constantly craved being in the water this summer, so we tried to go swimming any free chance we got. This was taken at White Water towards the end of my second trimester, and I loved getting some sun on my baby bump!

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I had this dress pre-pregnancy, and it’s one that’s been perfect to wear this summer, even with my growing bump!

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Duncan and I took a day trip to Memphis a couple of weekends ago, and it was extremely hot! These white shorts have been a go-to during my pregnancy, and this tank top I had prior to pregnancy is perfect whether pregnant or not.

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This floral dress is one I bought from Pink Blush! I love that the sleeves and length of the dress are a little longer. It is super comfy, and it’s definitely not just a maternity dress.

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This was the dress I wore for Duncan’s White Coat Ceremony last weekend (32 weeks pregnant). It’s not a maternity dress, but the flowy design of it and the length fit well with my belly that is growing more each day!

As far as shoes, I tried to wear shoes that had good support! I basically lived in my Birkenstocks all summer, because they’re my favorite & most comfortable shoes. When I worked, I tried to wear tennis shoes or Chacos for the support. For formal occasions, like graduation and Duncan’s White Coat Ceremony, I wore heels, but made sure to bring a change of shoes!

I’m no fashion expert (or an expert at being pregnant), but these are some of the ways I made it through a hot & humid summer pregnancy! You don’t have to spend a ridiculous amount of money on a new maternity wardrobe, but it’s fun to splurge on a few items; after all, growing a baby is something worth celebrating! 🙂

 

Always & forever,

Alex