October 17, 2014


Ha! looks like Hurley is being sucked into my belly.

Size:  Head of cauliflower or 2.5 lbs. 

Weight gain:  20 pounds. I think now I am finally starting to accept the weight gain. I definitely like looking pregnant and having strangers notice so bring it on.   

Maternity clothes:   Still a mix of maternity pants and then normal tops, dresses, leggings with a longer maternity tank.  About to break down and buy a few more cold weather pieces to give myself some more options.  

Stretch marks:  Only the few I noticed a few weeks ago.  

Sleep:  Oh sleep, I remember you old friend. These days if I get a few solid hours I am feeling pretty good the next day through work.  It's a combination of insomnia, achy legs and now anxiety about not getting sleep that keep me awake.  I tell myself that it's just my body preparing for Charlie in the next few months.  My doc today said I don't have to restrict sleeping on my side, say whattt?? Apparently it's really not until the baby is bigger at the end and the pressure is too much. She said to go for however I am comfortable and actually can sleep. HOORAY!!!

Gender:  Sweet little Charlie.  It's so fun to hear people talk and reference her by name. It makes it all so much more real. Although, I will admit, I said "it" when referring to her the other night.  Joe loved pointing it out to me, hahaha.  

Movement:  Oh yes, she's a mover.  Now that she is bigger she will get some body part shoved up against my rib cage which feels just as good as it sounds.  How do you Moms know what body part it is exactly I will never know.  I just know I feel her all over.  And not only feel her but can watch her too. The other day in a meeting with my boss', my top was moving around and I kept wondering if they were seeing it too. 

Best moment this week:  Taking a mid-week shopping trip to get her crib and mattress.  Buying the bed she will be sleeping in was kind of crazy. 

Looking forward to: Getting our carpets cleaned this weekend and hopefully Joe finding the time to finish painting. That would mean we are ready to move all the 100's of items in our living room up to her room and can finally see her special place come together.  Oh and seeing if I passed my glucose test  I took this morning.  Fingers crossed!!

Food Cravings: Oh carbs, plums, Cracklin Oat Bran cereal. 

Food Aversions:  bell peppers. Will I ever eat them again?

Labor Signs:  Having a little cramping which might be Braxton Hicks starting. My doc told me at my 24 week appointment that this would start happening. 

What I miss:  I want a Godzilla roll from Nikko's in Charlotte. If you live here and are not pregnant please go and eat one for me. I also would love a goblet of red wine, thanks.  

Symptoms:  Heartburn more frequently, back pain, numb belly at very top (random), shortness of breath doing the simplest of tasks.  

Nursery:  Almost time to get it ready! 

Mood:  Shits starting to get real. Third Trimester popping up on my phone this week along with Christmas decorations and commercials starting to come on makes me know that we are in the home stretch.  These next 3 months are going to fly by!  

October 12, 2014

Charlie's Shower and 2 Special Birthdays

Two weekends ago I made the trek to Cleveland for a special weekend.  My baby shower was scheduled for that Sunday, which also happened to be  Nolan's 2nd birthday.   I got into town Friday evening and went to dinner with my Dad and step-mom. Joe was supposed to go up with  me but work was just too busy so a last minute flight was booked.We ended up going to the place where Joe and I had our first date.  The food was just as good as I remembered and it was fun to be back there pregnant 11 years later.

Saturday during the day the kids were over while my sister shot a wedding.  We played all afternoon.

Pop, Hollyn and Scout watching the football game

My fave little guy is so smart. He knows all ABC's, can count to 20 and honestly speaks better than probably most 3-4 year olds.  I am one proud Aunt. 

Saturday night all my girlfriends came over for a major catch up session.  We hadn't seen each other since February so it was high time for some in person action.   Local favorite pizzas were bought, wine was flowing, and high school videos were shown.  I am so glad we got to spend the whole night together before the shower.  

I am so lucky to have these girls in my life. AND for them to travel from Denver, Boston, Chicago and Pittsburgh to celebrate baby girl. 

Sunday morning we all got ready and headed to my shower.  My Mom, Sister, Step-Mom and Joe's Mom were the hosts and they did such a great job. There wasn't a theme per se but we wanted a little southern flair so they incorporated mason jars into the decor, served sweet tea and of course barbecue. 

Fall centerpieces on burlap.  The mini mason jars were filled with white cheddar and rolo flavored popcorn from a local popcorn shop.  These were the favors and had a cute tag saying "Charlie's Popping Out Soon".  So cute and so yummy!

My MIL made these adorable cupcakes and spent I'm sure way too much time putting these together. They were so cute and must have been amazing because before we knew it they were completely gone!

After a yummy meal it was time to open presents. I only registered on Amazon in order to make things easy.  Many people shipped gifts (which was a life saver) and then some brought to shower or bought little things too.  Little girl made out with some great stuff.

Say cheese!

Baby overalls!??!?! NO way!

Yes, my sister totally made us stage these but I am glad she did because they are hilarious

My Sister is my mommy role model. 

Best friends since we were babies, with our babies. 

Love my sisters. Can't wait for Charlie to meet her Aunts. 

After the shower we all went back to my Dad's house and kept the party going. It was Nolan's 2nd birthday but since everyone was in town we wanted to celebrate Hollyn who will be 1 next month. 

How cute is that party hat????

Happy Birthday was a big hit! We sang it about 5 times per Nolan's request.

I spent that last night at my sister's to soak up all the time with the kids as I could. This was more than likely the last trip home before Charlie is born.  It was a very bittersweet weekend.  It was the last time sleeping alone at my parents' house, the last time I will get that one on one time with the kids, and I realized that this will be the first year I will not wake up in that house and celebrate Christmas with my sisters. The first time in 17 years.  

But now we get the family to come to Charlotte for Christmas and celebrate for the first time in our house.  And the next time I am home it will be Charlie's first time to Ohio.  Those things get me so excited for what is to come. 

September 28, 2014

Figuring it out

Had a bit of a realization this weekend; life will never be the same for me.  I mean obviously since becoming pregnant I knew that it wouldn't but this weekend it really kind of hit home.  And since this is where I share things I am going to be honest; I don't know how to deal.

I guess it all kind of started when Joe went on his bachelor trip to Bahamas.  I was in "mom mode" for 4 days straight and it was exhausting.  Not knowing if he was safe and not being able to reach out and contact him when I needed reassurance was really hard.

Fast forward to this weekend- we went to our friend's to watch the OSU game. We had a super fun night and on our way home at 11:30pm Joe wanted to go meet up with friends by us.  I did not; I wanted to get home and get the dogs out since they had been crated for 6 hours at this point.  We ended up just grabbing some beer for Joe and going home.  As he enjoyed his IPA's and was feeling good, I was feeling the effects of being pregnant.  I was hormonal, I was jealous of how much fun he was having (by himself mind you) and I was just feeling overall not me.  He kept telling me I should go to bed and I wanted to stay up because he was up.  But just like being the only sober one is no fun, apparently being the only drunk one with a sober watcher is also no fun.

And now Joe finds out that he needs to get his certification renewed for some of the specialty services he offers and the next training he can go to before the baby and before I am too far along is in Boston.  Boston, where he will get to go and stay with one of my very best friends for a few nights. Boston, where I keep telling her I am going to come and visit again and can't now with Joe because I will be too pregnant.

I am not trying to sound like I am complaining, although I am sure that it is.  I guess I just didn't realize that I would feel left out of things. But as I have my pity party of one I also have to remember that Joe is feeling left out of things too and is trying to figure this out in his own way as well.  While he has felt Charlie kick and has seen my belly move all over, those moments aren't the same for him as they are me.  I feel her non-stop and already have such a connection to our daughter.  Joe doesn't have that. He is really looking forward to her arrival so he can too have a bond with her.

I don't ever want to take this pregnancy and these special months for granted. I guess I just need to learn how to tone down the hormones and learn that it's ok to not be able to do everything I used to.  My body is doing something amazing and in just a few short months I will be bringing our daughter into this world and I KNOW that once her sweet little face is in front of me, that I wouldn't trade that for all the trips and late nights in the world.

September 19, 2014

24 Weeks

Size:  A big juicy cantaloupe! Apparently she weighs 1.5 lbs which is just crazy to me. 

Weight gain:  Guys, I am up to 17 pounds so far. I am averaging about 4 lbs a month.  Apparently there is nothing abnormal or alarming about this to anyone besides me. 

Maternity clothes:   The clothes struggle is real. I am still wearing some non-maternity tanks, leggings, dresses, tee shirts.  But getting dressed is always quite the challenge, especially for work. I have to break down soon and make some more purchases. 

Stretch marks:  So I have found a few. They are on my hips/butt.  And so it starts.

Sleep:  Sleeping still sucks. I have a pregnancy pillow but every night my legs ache so bad that I spend time trying to stretch and change positions to help.

Gender:  Girlie Girl. We have another maternal fetal appointment next week and I know Joe will be asking for confirmation, ha!

Movement:  Little girl is a moving machine and I love it! I know I can expect to feel it in the AM, after I eat and in the evenings. She is starting to move around much more so where I feel her is always changing.

Best moment this week:  Our whole weekend was amazing (per my post on Monday). 

Looking forward to: Our last ultrasound at maternal fetal next week.  So sad after having so many ultrasounds at the beginning. I might break down and get a 3D/4D just to get another peak at her.

Food Cravings: Carbs, chips, Mexican, fruit.

Food Aversions:  bell peppers

Labor Signs:  Had a scare this week and last.  Dr. Google told me it could be pre-term labor. I panicked. All is fine. Note to self- say no to Dr Google!

What I miss:  Finally booze has become something I miss. We went to a friend’s house and it was perfect weather and everyone was drinking it up and I would have loved to join them. 

Symptoms:  Lots of movement, heartburn, baby brain, lack of sleep and starting to generally just feel big.

Nursery:  It is prepped and ready for painting! Can’t wait to have that done and be able to start the decorating.

Mood:  I am still one happy girl.  I really love being pregnant and feel so blessed that we are where we are today.  I think back to those 2 years of trying and all we went through and it seems like so long ago.  While life is so great these days I will never take for granted our journey to becoming parents.

September 14, 2014

I Live For Little Moments Like This

This weekend was really special. There were a few little moments that took this sappy heart and made it even more full.

Saturday after spending time with friends we were forced to head home to spend the evening working on the nursery.  Joe is going to the Bahamas this week for a bachelor party and my mom is coming to help paint and get things moving while he is gone.  The nursery was once a nursery for a little boy and the previous owner painted multi-color stripes all along the bottom of the room which left grooves in the walls where each color started.  Joe has to sand and get all the edges smooth so there is no evidence of what used to be.  So while we wanted to stay and play I had to get Joe to spend some time in there while I had him.

In between sanding, the dogs and I would come in and sit and chat with Joe all night.  We were listening to music and I mentioned to Joe a song that makes me think of him and our little girl when I hear it.  We put it on over the speakers and took it all in.

The song is Kenny Chesney's "There Goes My Life".  This song is about a dad who goes from finding out he will be having a baby and thinking his life is over to that baby girl becoming his whole world.  I started crying as soon as the music started playing and Joe was poking fun at what a sap I am.  That was until the end of the song when I looked over at him and he had tears streaming down his face.  Things are becoming so real in this journey and it was so special to have that moment, in Charlie's room, realizing our future is so bright.

The second special moment happened on Sunday.  I have been feeling Charlie move for weeks now and every time I grab Joe's hand and wait for him to feel she stops moving.  Joe has been saying how much he wants to feel her because that will be another way for him to feel connected to her.  So while cheering on our Browns we finally had that moment.  She has been kicking super low but she must have moved and ended up kicking right under my belly button. I grabbed Joe's hand and she kicked twice right after.  It was so cool seeing Joe's reaction to feeling her.

These are moments that don't mean anything to anyone but us but I know I remember them forever.

September 7, 2014

Things In My Brain

Thought I would start this week off by sharing some things that are on my brain that aren't all necessarily baby related. But let's be honest, it's like the only thing and best thing to happen to me so I can never stray long.

And speaking of babies and brains…. baby brain is real.  My first real experience was at work on Friday. I was talking to my sister and got out of my car in the parking garage.  I got all the way through my building and up to my office and thankfully realized I didn't have my keys with me.  All the way back to find them still in the ignition.  I texted my Mom and Sister to which they responded "Just wait for Mommy Brain" and "Granny brain is even worse".   Is this what we have to look forward to? Living in a foggy haze for years?

I digress…..

Beyonce is just Beyonce: Yes, I said it. I seriously do not understand the hype. Can she sing? Sure. Can she dance? Def.  But is she worth the hysteria and "Bae" and "Queen B" comments?  Uh negative.  Feel free to keep on worshipping her toned thighs, risqué performing outfits and mega watt smile.  I'll be here probably skipping "Crazy in Love" on my Britney Spears Pandora Station.


Bell Peppers:  Now this one is definitely hormones but bell peppers are my arch nemesis right now. I used to think it was only grilled.  Then I sauteed and ate raw and about barfed my way into non-existence.  Thankfully the sight of them is ok because Joe eats at least one bell pepper every night as a snack.  <-------- Weirdo.

My Direct TV with no FXX:  Joe and I have a few TV shows that we can watch every episode a million times and never get sick of it: Family Guy, The Office, The League and It's Always Sunny.   Fall always means that our favorite shows are coming back on TV time and we just learned that our Direct TV package does not include FXX network.  We have like 1,000 channels and we don't get FXX?  So now we cannot watch the new season of either The League or Sunny?  This is unacceptable!

Pumpkin Spice Lattes In 90+ degree heat:  While it is September it is also hot as balls still in the Carolinas.  Fall is far from here and yet chicks across the Queen City are busting down Starbucks' doors to get the coveted PSL.   Is it only me or does it just feel wrong to drink a pumpkin, fall beverage as you have swamp ass just walking to the corner?  Sure, some are getting it iced but that does not make it any better in my eyes.  My first pumpkin treat will be once there are boots and scarves on my body and the leaves are changing.  Carry on Summer Haters.

Jelena:  The combo of Justin Bieber and Selena Gomez.  They just annoy me. Either be together or don't.  Not that hard.

Perfect Baby Shower Outfit:  My baby shower is in less than 4 weeks.  I realized today that I don't own anything appropriate for a fall in Cleveland shower. Because, let's be honest,  it could either be a perfect fall day or snowing and miserable in October in Ohio.  It's hard to plan ahead and find something appropriate for both.  I guess I could find a great dress and wear with boots. If freezing then add tights and a scarf.  Great, now where to start? I have been perusing ASOS maternity shop and a few boutiques.  Hopefully will find the perfect dress soon.


September 3, 2014

Hilton Head Vacation 2014

September is here and that means that Summer is almost over. While Fall is my favorite season I would never wish away Summer (side eye all you pumpkin spice drinkers already).  I am happy to report that we closed out this Summer with a week long vacation in Hilton Head and it was just what the doctor ordered.

My Mom rented us an amazing house on Palmetto Dunes complete with a private pool and lots of space to run around in.  The weather was nothing short of fabulous and we spent the week beach hopping, bike riding, eating, drinking and laughing.  It was so nice to relax and not worry about work or getting the nursery done or anything.  On the last day when my sister and her clan packed up first and left there were heavy tears being shed by this hormonal lady.  Living in Charlotte is so amazing but after a full week with family it really makes you realize how much you miss them when they are gone.

Here is our week in pictures.

First day- Mom breaking out the Jamo

Joe's mission was to catch Nolan a turtle. Day #3 this was accomplished. Days 3-5 were then spent trying to catch an alligator. 

Pip and Nolan.  "Here comes another" was a popular beach phrase as we sat in the waves. 

Start of the sand castle building. I supervised and made sure my sunburn didn't spread.  Pregnancy burn is real. 

Nolan patiently waiting while Joe perfected his castle creation

A skillfully crafted masterpiece. 

And then he made his move…..

Couples night out! Happily sipping on a delicious virgin marg while the rest enjoyed a big ole pitcher

My baby daddy is so handsome! I'm one lucky lady. 

Such a fun night out!

22 week bump pic. Home girl is sitting high. 

The scenery was so beautiful walking to the beach

Miss Hollyn getting a photo shoot at sunset. Hoping Charlie is as cute as this peanut. 

Day trip to Savannah.  Small maternity shoot coming soon. 

My little bump and nephew

While vacation is over, our baby shower is coming up in Cleveland in a few weeks and I am so looking forward to seeing my family again soon.  I am also so lucky that so many of my best friends will be coming into town and will be there to celebrate Baby Charlie.  This will be our last trip home until after she is born and I will be entering my 3rd trimester.  Time couldn't be going any faster!