37 Weeks

Monday, December 31, 2012

My baby bump at 37 weeks from the side:

And from the front:

Total Weight Gain: I am up a total of 15.5 lbs. (No change this past week.)

Movement:  Cullen is constantly moving!  Last night, I could make out the outline of his little foot as he pushed it out against my belly!

Boy or Girl? Boy!!!

Food Cravings: No cravings.

How I'm Feeling: I still feel pretty great!  No problems sleeping, I can still move around pretty well, and no real contractions yet.  I have some Braxton Hicks contractions just about every day, but they usually go away when I sit down for a few minutes.

Size of Baby: Watermelon (19 - 22 in, 6.5 lbs) 

Baby's Development:  At 37 weeks, my pregnancy is considered full term.  Yay!  At this point, baby can be expected to gain about half an ounce per day.  So what's keeping little one busy these days?  Practice, practice, practice.  Baby is simulating breathing by inhaling and exhaling amniotic fluid, sucking on his thumb, blinking, and pivoting from side to side.  All these are skills needed for life outside the womb.

Best Part of this Week: Christmas and working on the nursery!  I had a wonderful Christmas spent enjoying time with family.  Then, on Saturday, my mom came over to help me work on the nursery.  We made the crib skirt, worked on the curtains, and I finished the quilt.  So glad it is finally coming together!  (There's nothing like waiting until the last minute.)

What I'm Looking Forward To: Meeting our little boy!  We don't quite have everything ready for his arrival yet, so I am perfectly okay with him waiting another 3 weeks to get here, but I can't believe we are so close.  I get more excited every day about getting to hold him so soon!

Maternity Pictures

Friday, December 28, 2012
On December 1st, Corey and I had some maternity photos taken by the amazing Liz Davison at Yellow Umbrella Photography.  I think she did a great job capturing our personalities and how excited we are about our little boy!  Here are just a few of the pictures:

36 Weeks

Sunday, December 23, 2012
My baby bump at 36 weeks from the side:

And from the front:

Total Weight Gain: I am up a total of 15.5 lbs.

Movement:  Cullen is still constantly moving any time I'm still.  (And sometimes when I'm moving around.)  I love feeling him move his little legs and feet.

Boy or Girl? Boy!!!

Food Cravings: No cravings.

How I'm Feeling: Pretty good other than the hip pain that I wake up with every morning and start feeling at the end of the work day.  And I think I have another cold coming on...not excited about that.  Overall though, I still feel great.  No problems sleeping and I can even deal with the hip pain.  Only four-ish more weeks of being slightly uncomfortable.

Size of Baby: Large Cantaloupe (19 - 22 in, 6 lbs) 

Baby's Development:  Baby's skull isn't the only soft structure in his little body.  Most of baby's bones and cartilage are quite soft as well (they will harden over the first few years of life) - allowing for an easier delivery.  Baby is now about 6 pounds in weight and probably measures about 20 inches in length.  Growth will experience a slowdown now, both so baby will be able to fit the narrow passageway to the outside and also so he can store up all the energy needed for delivery.

By now, many of baby's systems are pretty mature, at least in baby terms - and just about ready for life on the outside.  Blood circulation, for instance, has been perfected and baby's immune system has matured enough to protect him from infections outside the womb.  Other systems, however, still need a few finishing touches.  Once such notable example: digestion - which actually won't be fully mature until sometime after birth.  Why's that:  Inside his little gestational cocoon, baby has relied on the umbilical cord for nutrition, meaning that the digestive system - though developed - hasn't been operational.  So baby will take the first year or two to bring that system up to speed.

Best Part of this Week: My Christmas break started this week!  Excited about a break from work and time to focus on getting ready for this little one.

Also, I sorted everything that we have been given for Cullen and started organizing his nursery.  I loved looking at all the cute little baby things again!

What I'm Looking Forward To: Christmas!!! And then a week at home with my hubby!  Looking forward to spending some time with him and working on finishing up Cullen's nursery.

35 Weeks

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

My baby bump at 35 weeks from the side:

And from the front:

Total Weight Gain: I am up a total of 13.5 lbs. (I lost about a pound this week.)

Movement:  Cullen is still moving quite a bit.  I know he has to be squished in there and is constantly trying to stretch out.

Boy or Girl? Boy!!!

Food Cravings: No cravings this week, I just want to eat a lot!

How I'm Feeling: A little overwhelmed.  We only have about 5 weeks left until Cullen's due date, and there is still so much that we need to get done. I have to finish his quilt, make the crib skirt and curtains, and we need to finish organizing the nursery.  I'm hoping I have the energy to get it all done before he gets here.

Other than that I feel about the same as I did last week.  Like just about every other woman does in her third trimester.

Size of Baby: Large Cantaloupe (19 - 22 in, 5.5 lbs) 

Baby's Development:  Most of baby's growth over the next month or so will be in weight (with a gain of anywhere from one pound to several), not height.  Baby's weight is now made up of about 15 percent body fat and will continue to increase to 30 percent at term.  Also continuing to grow at an amazing pace is your baby's brain power.

Best Part of this Week: My good friend hosted a Very Hungry Caterpillar themed shower for us at church yesterday.  She did such a great job!  It was so cute! And Cullen got lots of cute things from friends and family.

What I'm Looking Forward To: Christmas!!!  I still have a lot to do to get ready, but I am very excited!  And then Corey and I both have the week after Christmas off, so we will have some time to spend together and finish getting everything ready for Cullen.

34 Weeks

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

My baby bump at 34 weeks from the side:

And from the front:

Total Weight Gain: I am up a total of 14.5 lbs. (I gained about 4.5 lbs this week. Aaahhhhhh!!!)

Movement:  I am still surprised at how much room Cullen still must have to move around.  I am still feeling his wiggles and kicks all day.  (Or maybe he is really squished and is just trying to make more room.)  He was really moving in church on Sunday.  Mom and I were mesmerized by my rolling belly.  Sorry to everyone we distracted with our giggles! 

Boy or Girl? Boy!!!

Food Cravings: Corey and I finally went to Outback to get a Bloomin' Onion.  It was so yummy!  And one night Corey made a late night McDonald's run to get me an M&M McFlurry and some fries.  He is such a good hubby!

How I'm Feeling: I've finally gotten over the cold from last week.  But, back pain seems to have set in permanently.  Sitting at a desk all day is torture.  I just want to lay down, but it is difficult to get any work done that way.  My feet have started to swell every afternoon too.  The swelling usually goes down as soon as I can get home and put my feet up, but I am not a fan of sausage toes and cankles. :(

Also, I am running out of clothes that fit.  The support bands on my pants are too tight and my shirts are too short.  I wish yoga pants and over-sized t-shirts were socially acceptable work attire.  Only five more weeks of work before Cullen gets here though, so I can probably make it.

Overall though, I still feel great.  No major complaints.  This pregnancy has been a breeze so far, and I have loved every minute of it.

Size of Baby: Pineapple (19 - 22 in, 4.9 lbs) 

Baby's Development:  Baby could be as tall as 20 inches right now and about five pounds!  That growth is the only big change this week.  Also, baby's fingernails now reach the end of the fingertips and may even curl over the tip.

Best Part of this Week: We had our Childbirth Preparation class at the hospital last Monday.  Corey and I really learned a lot and feel a lot more confident about labor and delivery.  I can do this.

Also, it always makes my day when I overhear people talking about my belly.  At home depot this weekend, I heard a couple of ladies talking about how pregnant I am and how good I look.  One day at work this week, I passed a couple of students in the hall and heard one say "Aww, look at her cute belly."  Every pregnant woman should get to hear things like that.  Makes me feel great, especially on days when I feel like a whale!

What I'm Looking Forward To: We have our last class this week.  We will have a chance to learn and practice different pain management techniques for labor and delivery.  I am excited about being so close to needing to use what we are learning!

I also have another shower on Sunday!  I am super excited about spending time with friends and family (and of course seeing lots of cute baby things!)

33 Weeks

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

My baby bump at 33 weeks from the side:

And from the front:

Total Weight Gain: I am up a total of 10 lbs. (I gained about 1 lb this week.)

Movement:  Cullen's movements have been about the same for the past couple of weeks.  He moves all the time!

Boy or Girl? Boy!!!

Food Cravings: Nothing at all.  Everything is yummy!

How I'm Feeling: Great other than this cold I have been fighting for about a week.  Being sick while pregnant is absolutely no fun...there's not much I can take to feel better.  Needless to say, not much baby prep got done this weekend.  I have a lot of catching up to do.  I am starting to feel better though, so now I only have to deal with the typical aches and pains of being pregnant. :)

Size of Baby: Honeydew (19 in, 4.5 lbs) 

Baby's Development:  At this stage, baby could have grown a full inch or more this week alone.  Weight gain can range from a third more growth to full doubling before his big debut.  If we could see inside, we'd see our baby acting more like a baby, with his eyes closing during sleep and opening while awake.  And more light is penetrating the womb, helping baby differentiate between day and night.  And baby has reached an important milestone now: the development of his own immune system that will be able to provide protection from mild infections.

Best Part of this Week: Saturday was my birthday!  Corey and I had maternity pictures taken, which was so much fun.  I can't wait to see them!  Then we had dinner at my parents' house.  My mom always makes the best birthday dinners! 

What I'm Looking Forward To: We had our Childbirth Preparation class at the hospital last night.  I am looking forward to the second part of the class next Wednesday.  All of this preparation makes me feel like we are really getting close to meeting our little boy!

32 Weeks

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

My baby bump at 32 weeks from the side:

And from the front:

Total Weight Gain: I am up a total of 9 lbs. (I gained about 1/2 lb this week.)

Movement:  It definitely feels like Cullen is running out of room.  He is constantly squirming like he is trying to make space and can't get comfortable.  He is now finally letting other people feel him move too...as opposed to the way he used to get still as soon as someone put their hand on my belly.

Boy or Girl? Boy!!!

Food Cravings: Sweets.  Probably not a good thing.

How I'm Feeling: Pregnant.  That pretty much sums it up.  I've had lots of heartburn, hip pain, and am just uncomfortable in general.  Nothing worse that what is to be expected for the third trimester though.  I feel like this pregnancy has been a breeze so far though, so no complaints. :)

Size of Baby: Head of Lettuce (19 in, 3.9 lbs) 

Baby's Development:  This week baby weighs almost four pounds and could be up to 19 inches long from head to toe.  Most likely baby has settled into the head-down, bottoms-up position in preparation for birth.  (Cullen was at our last ultrasound at 29 weeks...based on his movements, I am pretty sure he still is.)  At this point, baby's digestive system is all set and ready to go.  And because he is accumulating more fat, baby's skin is finally turning opaque, looking more and more like a newborn.  

Best Part of this Week: So many fun things this week...I had a shower at work, Thursday was Thanksgiving, and Friday we got our Christmas tree and got it decorated!  I still have a few more Christmas decorations to put up, but I am glad it is starting to look like Christmas in our house.  It is definitely one of my favorite times of the year!

What I'm Looking Forward To: Is it too early to say Christmas?  I love this time of year.  I love decorating, listening to Christmas music, wrapping presents, and spending time with family.  I can't wait until Cullen's first Christmas next year!

31 Weeks

Monday, November 19, 2012

My baby bump at 31 weeks from the side:

And from the front:

Total Weight Gain: I am up a total of 8 1/2 lbs. (I gained about 2 lbs this week.)

Movement:  Cullen is still moving all the time!  He pushes on my hip bones, kicks my ribs, and it feels like he is trying to escape through my belly button.  Sometimes his kicks can be a little painful, but I still love it!  I am going to miss all of his wiggles, kicks, and punches.

Boy or Girl? Boy!!!

Food Cravings: Junk food.  Definitely not the things I should be eating.

How I'm Feeling: I still have some days that are really good and some days where I feel really pregnant.  Bending over and getting out of a chair are getting very difficult.  And my belly starts to feel very heavy if I'm up and moving around for a while.  I do a lot more sitting and resting these days.  Only 9 more weeks though...I'm sure I can make it.

Size of Baby: Head of Lettuce (18 in, 3.2 lbs) 

Baby's Development:  Baby's brain is working overtime these days, developing faster than ever.  Connections between individual nerve cells are growing at a frenetic clip, and baby can now perceive information from all five senses.  So what is baby doing all day?  Making faces, hiccupping,  swallowing, breathing, pedaling with little hands and feet, and even sucking his thumb.

Best Part of this Week: Corey and I went to a 'Caring for Your Baby' class at the hospital this past week.  It was fun to watch Corey practice changing a diaper, burping a baby, and giving a sponge bath.  He is going to be such a great daddy!

Also,  we had a shower on Sunday with some of mom's family.  I loved getting to see everyone and enjoy all the yummy shower food and cake!  And Cullen got lots of really cute things.  His nursery is filling up fast!

What I'm Looking Forward To: This is going to be a good week.  I have a shower at work, Thanksgiving, and we get to decorate for Christmas on Friday.  Yay!!!

30 Weeks

Sunday, November 11, 2012

My baby bump at 30 weeks from the side:

And from the front:

Total Weight Gain: I am up a total of 6 1/2 lbs. (I gained about 2 1/2 lbs this week.)

Movement:  Still feeling lots of movement.  And a lot of the kicks and punches these days are a little painful. I feel like his feet are constantly stuck in my ribs...not so much fun.

I also felt his little hiccups for the first time this week!  (I am pretty sure it was hiccups anyway.)  I loved it!

Boy or Girl? Definitely a boy!  Confirmed again by our ultrasound this week.

Food Cravings: No cravings, but I only want sweets.  I definitely have no desire to eat healthy.

How I'm Feeling: Still feeling great, but I am definitely feeling pregnant these days.  I underestimate the amount of space I need to maneuver around furniture. I am constantly hitting my belly on things.  I have also gotten to the point where if I drop something, it usually stays on the floor.  I can still shave my legs and paint my toenails, but doing so has gotten infinitely more difficult.  I just have to laugh at myself sometimes.

Size of Baby: Butternut Squash (17 in, 3.1 lbs) 

Baby's Development:  Baby's height and weight haven't changed much in the past week, but the big news is baby's brain gain.  Until now, the surface of his brain was smooth.  Now, his brain is taking on those characteristic grooves and indentations.  The reason for this change?  Those wrinkles allow for an increase amount of brain tissue - a necessary change as baby prepares for life outside of the womb.  Another big change: Baby's bone marrow has taken over production of red blood cells.  This is an important step, because it means he is better able to thrive on his own once born.

Best Part of this Week: The 3D/4D ultrasound.  I love every change I get to see Cullen!

What I'm Looking Forward To: My second shower is Sunday.  I love a chance to hang out with family I don't get to see all that often.  And what better reason to do so than to celebrate the newest family member!

Another Look at Our Little Boy

Saturday, November 10, 2012
This past week, Corey and I got to go in for a 3D/4D ultrasound.  It was so much fun to have another opportunity to see our little guy again! I think this made me fall in love with him even more.  I can't even imagine how I will feel once I can hold him in my arms!

Some people think these pictures are creepy, but I absolutely love them!  It is so amazing that we have the technology that lets us see little babies like this; with so much detail!  It was fun to be able to look at him and try to figure out who he looks like...what do you think?  Me or Corey?

Here are some pictures of Cullen's sweet little face.  I may be a little biased, but I already think he is beautiful!

And look at how much hair he has already!  I wonder what color it will be.  Brown, blonde, red maybe?

We also got some sweet pictures of his hands and feet.  He looked like he was rubbing his face and sucking on his fingers, especially toward the end.  I think he was getting tired...it was a busy hour for this little guy.

I cannot get over how amazing these pictures are.  And seeing him look so real made me want him here even more.  I can't believe we only have about 10 more weeks before I get to hold him in my arms.  I just can't wait!  I am so excited and love him so much already!!!

29 Weeks

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

My baby bump at 29 weeks from the side:

And from the front:

Total Weight Gain: I gained another 1 1/2 lbs this week.  Finally growing steadily.

Movement:  I think our little boy is starting to run out of room in there.  His movements feel more like stretches instead of kicks and punches.

Boy or Girl? Boy!

Food Cravings: Nothing in particular.  I'm just hungry all the time now.

How I'm Feeling: I am starting to feel a little more uncomfortable lately.  Cullen has made his way up under my ribs and some body part is constantly poking them or trying to push them out of the way...not so much fun for me.  I am also having a more difficult time getting comfortable when it's time to go to sleep.  All of that is to be expected at this point though, so no real complaints.  

Size of Baby: Cabbage (17 in, 2.9 lbs) 

Baby's Development:  Baby's wrinkled skin is smoothing out as more fat is deposited under the skin surface.  This new fat serves as an energy source.  That explains why baby feels so energized!  Space is at a premium, so jabs and pokes are now mostly from elbows and knees. Those kicks will be more vigorous than before (and also less erratic) because baby is stronger and excitedly responding to all sorts of stimuli.  Also this week, the buds for permanent teeth are forming under baby's gums.

Best Part of this Week: We got the nursery painted and the crib assembled!  I also had my 28 week appointment this week.  I had the glucose test this time...not so much fun, but I passed!  It was a great week overall!

What I'm Looking Forward To: Corey and I will get to see our little boy again this week!  We are going Thursday for a 3D/4D ultrasound.

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