March 2, 2015

dolphin dashing and step counting

We are back from a mostly cold and rainy but still fun 10 days in Georgia!  I absolutely love going to Georgia, but I think 10 days without the ability to go to the pool and the beach every day was a bit much for us.  But nonetheless it was a relaxing trip and I'm so happy we had the opportunity to go.  But more on the actual trip another time.

The whole reason we scheduled this particular trip to Georgia was so I could run the Super Dolphin Day Race.  My mom had been on the island last year when the race was going on and thought it would be fun for us to be a part of it this year.  The had a 10k, a 5k and a 1 mile race.  If you were bold you could take on all three, as the 10k was at 7am, the 5k at 8:30am and the 1 mile at 9:30am.  If I wasn't pregnant it would have been fun to go for that.  Just over 10 miles would be great if you're training for a spring half!  But I am pregnant, so I opted to play it safe, and remind myself that I hadn't run more than 5 miles since November.


When I walked to the end of my parent's driveway that morning, I could literally see the race start about a football field away.  Talk about the most convienent race start I've ever had.  I was still in bed 45 minutes before the thing started.  And the way the course worked out the 6 mile marker was actually in my parent's yard.  So Papa and Ryann camped out at the end of the driveway to watch me run by!  I loved it.  But back to the start.  I headed over about 10 minutes before the start time, and I was stupidly shocked at how few people were running the race.  And nearly every single person looked like a 'legit' runner, with Garmins and all that.  I wasn't planning on being super slow, but I'd been running anywhere between a 10 and 11 minute mile.  So I texted my mom and told her not to be alarmed if I came in last.  Ha.

Thankfully I didn't finish last.  Well I was the slowest in my age group, but I was 112 out of 142 total runners.  I am proud to say that I finished in 1:01:56, a 9:58 mile pace!  Not speedy by any means, but great for me right now, and certainly not anything to be embarrassed about.  The course is mostly residential (which isn't surprising since the island is small!) and incredibly flat.  There was one stretch close to east beach that was SUPER windy, but it was a very windy day in general so it was to be expected.  Overall I really loved the race.  The convienient start and finish definitely helped.  And it was fun that the girls could watch all the runners from the windows of the house.  The race was in support of the local elementary schools so there was a lot of kids running, something I think is great for my girls to see.  I can't wait until one of them is interested in running with me!

On a different but still health related note, I mentioned that I snagged a fitbit flex that my dad wasn't going to use.  I haven't had it very long, but so far I'm a fan.  It is certainly motivating!  And also has shown me that I need to move my butt even more.  There have been a couple days that I've run 3 miles, and still struggled to hit 10,000 steps by the end of the day.  But my stubborness and hatred of not reaching a goal works well with the dang thing so I've found myself doing laps in the family room at the end of the night to get those last 300-500 steps or whatever.

I can't speak for it's accuracy, but in one random article I read it noted the fitbit products are some of the most accurate for step counting.  I know that I sometimes get extra steps counted because I don't truly have a dominant hand.  I write and eat left handed, but everything else I do with my right hand.  I noticed it counted steps while I was doing my make-up, but sometimes doesn't count steps when I'm carrying Elsie or pushing a stroller or a cart.  So I think in the end it all evens out.  Or something like that.  I look forward to the warm weather when we can be outside all the time getting in more steps! ;o)

February 27, 2015

sixteen weeks


how far along:  16 weeks (compare to 16 weeks with Ryann, 16 weeks with Elsie)

size of babyaccording to the bump an avocado, about 4.6 inches long and weighing 3.5 ounces.  Baby can now hear my voice, is growing hair, lashes and eyebrows and is forming taste buds.

weight gain:  We'll pretend 5 pounds.  But I don't have a scale and we're on vacation so that number could be a heck of a lot worse.  Oh well.

maternity clothes:  My pants still fit completely fine, for the most part anyway.  And don't bother me.  But I like wearing my maternity tops.  Just for the length.

symptoms:  Headaches and fatigue.  Neither or awful, but I love a good nap.

exercise:  Ran a total of 11.5 miles.  According to my fitbit I've walked 80,505 steps this past week.  Not too shabby.  It would have been a lot more if it had actually been warmer while we've been in Georgia.  It is certainly warmer than home but I'm not one to be outside so much when it is 45-50 degrees.

cravings/aversions:  Nothing really.

movement:  I swear that I was able to feel a few kicks yesterday.  I was almost positive that is what I was feeling.  But it hasn't happened since.  So who knows.  This would be by far the earliest I've felt movement.

sleep:  Meh.

gender:  Girl :o).

looking forward to:  Getting home to my doppler.  I only use it twice a week, but it will have been 10+ days since I've used it, and I'm starting to feel antsy.  I don't really have any strong symptoms, and I can't guarantee I've felt movement.  So the doppler is my reassurance.

worries:  I always have a slight worry in the back of my mind that something is going to go wrong and we'll some how lose the baby.  But for the most part anything I'm worrying about lately is moving/renovating related.

what's different this time:  I'm still feeling so removed from this pregnancy.  Like it isn't happening.  I'm thrilled, and the little bump makes it a bit more real.  But it's just weird.  Also no serious cravings at all.

best moment this week:  Ryann has pretty much become obsessed with her baby sister.  She constantly wants to snuggle with my belly and 'keep her baby sister warm'.  She talks about her a lot.  It has the potential to get annoying, but for now it is really cute.  Also just being on the beach earlier this week was wonderful and relaxing.  It's been nice to not have a schedule for a bit.  But I'm glad we usually have a schedule.  :o)

February 25, 2015

taking the stage

On Valentine's Day, Ryann participated in her first dance competition.  Some people give me those wide questioning eyes when I say she is on a competitive team, but honestly the competition aspect means very little to these girls at this age.  Sure they know they can in theory win a trophy, but ultimately it is just good for being a part of a team and pushing her to work hard and care about something.

That morning we had quite the struggle over her make-up, because she had zero interest in wearing the false eyelashes.  So I gave up, and thankfully another mom came to the rescue once we were at the competition location and put on the rest of Ry's eye make-up for me.  The competition was actually running nearly an hour ahead of schedule, so we didn't have to wait long before it was performance time!  I was so nervous as they walked on stage, worried that Ryann might freak out or something.  That auditorium was huge, much more expansive than anything she has ever been in.  But the fear was completely unnecessary.  They got up there and rocked it.  I was so proud of those girls.  It wasn't perfect, but they worked hard and kept smiles on their faces and had a good time.

I honestly don't know how they 'placed' or scored or what not.  I was so dang confused during the awards ceremony.  Ha.  But they did well enough!  I thought that all 8 and unders competed against each other, which they did in some areas, but their actual dance was judged based on age, and since they were the only 4 year old group there they were scored against themselves.  It works.  The only real mishap of the day was that Ryann was supposed to go up to collect the trophy for her class, but they were all confused and another girl ended up doing it.  So naturally Ryann cried through the rest of the awards ceremony and I had to go retrieve her from the stage.  :o)


I don't know if we'll stick with competitive dance for Ryann.  She likes taking dance class and loves getting to hang out with her little girl friends.  But she HATES practicing her dance.  I'm over fighting with her about it, so unless she shows me that she really really wants to do it, we might just switch to rec classes next year.  She's 4, we'll figure it out, we'll all survive.  :o)

Great job Miss Ryann, mommy loves watching you dance so much!

February 24, 2015

valentine's fun

oh hey fashionably late blog post.  no one is surprised...

I felt like I sort of slacked on Valentine's day this year.  Between Elsie's birthday party and Ryann's first dance competition, plus the pregnancy and the new house, my brain has just been spent.  However we still had three days of heart day themed fun and the girls were non the wiser, so that is all that matters, right?

Thursday our friend Steph hosted a Valentine's themed playdate.  Which is obviously just an excuse to dress our kids in festive gear, take pictures, and eat treats.  But it works, the kids played and had fun, and the moms got to sit and chat.  Plus, pink and red cutenes.  #winning


On Friday I helped host the Valentine's party for Ryann's preschool class.  Elsie and I had to rush over after her dance class (Elsie takes dance class! It's so cute! More on that another time), so I opted to just be in charge of the plates and drinks.  I did go slightly Martha Stewart and covered the juice boxes in construction paper to make them a bit cuter.  Elsie made herself right at home, playing games with the kids and sneaking in at the table for snack too.  She is certainly not afraid to hang out with the big kids!


Ryann scored quite the loot from her class.  This year was surprisingly tame, with mostly store bought invites.  Which made me feel a bit better about ours.  I don't think either way is better, homemade vs store bought, but I do like making them.  It just didn't happen.


Saturday was Ryann's dance competition, and Chris had to get up and head out to work, but I still managed to sneak a little heart shaped fun in for the morning.  We got the girls simple little gifts, with a new shirt, some coloring utensils and stickers.  Then I made heart shaped pancakes and we had strawberry milk.  When I set out the platter of pancakes Ryann exclaimed, "MOM!  They're shaped like HEARTS!  You're AMAZING!!"  They were a little wonky, but they worked.  And it's the little things that make the kids the most happy.  :o)


That evening we wound up taking the girls to a semi nice Italian restaurant in town.  Really it was a last minute decision, but it worked out.  When we walked up to the hostess stand Ryann immediately said to the girl working, "My name is Ryann, this is my sister Elsie, and this is my mom Ashley.  She has a baby in her belly!"  The girl was a little overwhelmed with all the information, haha.  There weren't any other children in the dining room, so I felt a little bad, but for the most part the girls were very well behaved.  At one point a man across the room made eye contact with Elsie and waved at her.  Naturally her reaction was to lift her dress up and flash him her belly button.  That kid and her belly button, it's ridiculous.

February 23, 2015

fifteen weeks

I'm going to be back dating all my weekly pregnancy posts over the next couple of days, but here is the most recent!

written February 20th


My monthly doctor's appointment was on Wednesday.  All was well, blood pressure was 124/82 (however the nurse always takes my blood pressure immediately after weighing me and having me go to the bathroom, so I think in theory it should be lower), baby's heart rate was great and I didn't really have anything to complain about.  I was in and out of the office in approximately seven minutes.  I did run into a mom who goes to the same office when I was picking Ryann up from preschool.  She informed me she saw me heading out, and that I should count myself lucky, as my doctor had to run over and deliver a baby immediately after my appointment and set the entire office back an hour and a half.  Whew!

how far along:  15 weeks (compare to 15 weeks with Ryann, 15 weeks with Elsie)

size of babyaccording to the bump a naval orange, about 4 inches long and weighing 2.5 ounces.  It's funny, but since not that long ago the baby was merely a fraction of an inch, 4 inches sounds huge.  Baby's body proportions are nearing normal, and all of the joints and limbs can now move.

weight gain:  4 pounds.  I can't. stop. eating.  And then I feel like I want to puke because I ate too much.  So fun!  Ha.

maternity clothes:  I haven't ventured into the maternity pants, or needed to really, but I have been wearing some of my tops.  I just feel like all my shirts are too short and I want stuff that is a little looser.  I don't NEED maternity clothes, if I could find some longer tops or cute tunics those would probably work better.

symptoms:  Pregnancy wise my symptoms have been pretty good this past week.  Still tired, get the occasional headache, but I feel a little bit more normal.  My belly is getting a little bigger, and making sleep uncomfortable, so that kind of sucks.  When my doctor was looking for the heart beat she said 'oh wow, I can feel your uterus right there.'  I kind of wanted to ask if I should be alarmed by that, but I highly doubt it.  It is just pretty dang hard.  Chris says he can tell the difference when he hugs me.

I do have a pretty horrible head cold this week and it is driving me insane.

exercise:  Not my best week, but it could have been worse.  I ran 7.5 miles, walked 2.3 miles and did one barbell class.  My dad got a fitbit flex from work that he didn't think he'd use, so I snagged it.  So now my goal is to get 70,000 steps a week this pregnancy.  It's amazing to me that even on the days that I run 3ish miles, I have to try to hit that 10,000 steps.  It isn't easy!

cravings/aversions:  Fruit and ice cream.  And I randomly felt the urge for breakfast sausage with syrup.  Haha.

movement:  nope

sleep:  I've been waking up at 3am and staying awake for two ish hours.  So annoying and so exhausting.  I just feel like crap from the cold when I wake up and I can't get comfortable.

gender:  Girl!

looking forward to:  We made some more decisions on our house that we're renovating and I just can't wait to work on it more.  I'm also ready to get to Georgia today!

worries:  Not much really.  I'm excited AND stressed about decorating all the rooms in our new house.

what's different this time:  I don't remember my belly being uncomfortable at this point.  I've also gained more weight than with the other two.  Maybe that has something to do with it?  Whoops.  Also this is the least concerned I've been with a pregnancy and eventual labor and delivery.

best moment this week: Is it sad that all my best moments are related to our new house?  Seeing the progress they've made is so exciting.  Also watching Ryann's first dance competition was fun.  It was mildly stressful because she hates the eye make-up, but they were so cute on stage.

February 17, 2015

Baby J, the third edition

written January 30th

We had finally gotten in to a real groove with two kids.  The girls have both become relatively easy to care for, are a lot of fun, and for the most part we can get out of the house pretty easily.  So what is any normal sane person supposed to do?  Decide to have another baby of course.  :o)

Now to fully understand the beginning of this pregnancy, a little background information is necessary.  Back in October, a few days before Halloween, I found out I was pregnant.  The whole situation was a little weird with some questionable cheap test sticks and dates that didn't match up.  But a First Response Early Reader test came up positive without any question so we started celebrating.  One week later when I got out of bed, there was bright red blood.

It ended up being a chemical pregnancy.  A chemical pregnancy is a miscarriage before anything can be seen in the uterus.  Essentially, a fertilized egg implants into the uterus, but for whatever reason does not continue to grow, therefore the only evidence that the woman was ever pregnant was the chemical reaction that caused the pregnancy test to turn positive.  I was confused and devastated.  I wasn't sure how to feel.  I kept trying to reason with myself that I had only been 'pregnant' a week.  How could I have been so attached?  But my friend said it best, you fall in love the minute that second line appears.  I was surprised by how much it hurt, and I definitely spent a few days in tears.

We debated waiting a bit to try again, but ultimately I decided that would make it even harder on me.  I didn't feel like I had lost a baby.  I hadn't really begun to picture what our third baby would be like.  What life would be like.  But I absolutely mourned the loss of the pregnancy.  And I felt like being pregnant again would help ease the pain.  Because I generally have irregular cycles, I was using ovulation strips, and was surprised when they came up positive just two weeks after my loss.  It was going to be my shortest cycle to date.

Fast forward eleven days later.  I had been emotional and irrational and just not feeling great.  But I attributed most of that to eating crap food for a bit because of Thanksgiving.  I've learned how much food can affect my body and how I feel thanks to the Whole30.  I swore that was the cause.  But the morning of December 1st I got antsy and took a pregnancy test.  It was SO faint.  I thought maybe it was an evaporation line, or that I was going to go through another chemical pregnancy.  I said nothing to Christopher, and waited until the next morning to take another test.  This one was again faint, but definitely darker than the day before.  I dipped a more expensive test, and a digital test, and they both came up positive.  I thought I would be elated, but truthfully I was just numb.  I couldn't find an ounce of excitement because I was instantly terrified.

After letting it sink in a bit, I woke Christopher up.  Mostly because I wanted his butt out of bed to help me make the girls breakfast, but just before I went back to tend to the littles, I dropped a 'by the way, I'm pregnant.'  He was happy.  And said that he thought I was based on the way I had been acting, but hey.

In all honesty it took a couple of weeks before I started to feel excited.  Once I passed my loss date, and especially after the first ultrasound, I began to relax a bit.  I also kept taking pregnancy tests like a crazy person.  Watching the line get darker and darker was just so comforting.  With the chemical, granted I didn't take near as many tests, but the line just never got darker.  With this pregnancy when the test line was finally darker than the control line, I stopped being such a freak with the tests.  :o)


I'm pretty sure that is crazy all wrapped up in a jpeg there.  Yes I even used ovulation tests as pregnancy tests because I ran out of cheapies and I only had so many of the 'nice' tests and you can turn an ovulation predictor test positive when you're pregnant.  Completely unnecessary to take all those tests, but they helped calm my nerves so whatever.

We wanted to hold off telling people, partly because of the previous loss, and mostly because we wanted to protect the girls (and keep the girls from telling EVERYONE).  But that plan was quickly ruined the morning after I told Christopher.  I received the following text from my sister:


I sent a screen shot to Chris with a 'what the hell am I supposed to do with this?!?!?'  I ended up telling her.  Then two weeks later I was with my mom when my doctor's office had to call me to reschedule my first appointment.  The entire scenario is detailed in one of my weekly posts (which I will get to posting in a bit) but she figured me out too.

And I know several other people have.  They haven't directly asked me, but I hear several people have asked girls that do know!  One guess was because I haven't been blogging.  Yes, I do kind of crash in the evenings, but honestly for a while I didn't know what to blog about or was too lazy to edit pictures.  So really the pregnancy wasn't the only thing killing my blog.  Nah, instagram did that too.  :o)

edited to add: I think it's funny that so many people were tipped off because of the portable ultrasound comment!  Yes, we totally used it to peek at the baby, but the truth is Chris often brings it home to practice on my joints, and that particular weekend he had it to look at a friend's wrist.  Too funny.

So to bring this long winded up and down post to a close, baby (GIRL!!!) number three is on the way and we are THRILLED.  2015 is seriously going to be quite the year.  If we make it to 2016 alive I'll count it a success.  But I'm certainly excited for the crazy ride! 

February 16, 2015

pink pink pink!

Yes, it's true.  There will be more pink and glitter and tutus in this house.  Baby number three is another girl!

I've gotten several 'how did you find out so early?!?!'  I honestly don't know which exact test I had done, I swear they just called it the panorama test?  Anyway, it is genetic blood testing you can do after 10 weeks.  They look for abnormalities in the chromosomes, and a lovely little bonus is that you can find out the sex super early on.  The test is geared towards people with risk factors, or women over the age of 35.  But the lab my office uses was only charging $25 for the test right now, so it didn't seem like a bad idea to go ahead and get it done.

My doctor's office called me about ten days after my blood was drawn with the results.  First she told me that everything looked normal and my risk was low for any abnormalities.  Yay!  Then she asked if I wanted to know the sex, to which I replied not over the phone.  I was able to go to the office and pick up an envelope with the results in it.  I took the envelope to Carter's and picked out a girl's outfit and a boy's outfit, then the girls who were working took those along with the envelope, and wrapped up the appropriate outfit.

Later that night after the girls were in bed, Chris and I opened the box together.  Now I loved the gender reveal party we had with Elsie, and the anticipation and excitement we had finding out with all our friends, but Chris was very adamant that if it were a third girl, he'd like to find out without being among a crowd.  I didn't blame him.  And wouldn't you know, we opened up that girly romper.


We are thrilled to be having another little girl, we're very excited to add to our family.  But yes, we both were pulling for a boy.  The idea of getting to raise a boy was exciting for both of us.  However three girls will be so much fun.  And so cute.  And I know girls.  And I'm already oogling headbands and rompers and oh my goodness.  THREE GIRLS!  So much fun.

What I find funny is that most of the responses to hearing it's a third girl are along the lines of 'oh your poor husband', as if A) three girls are going to make him absolutely miserable or B) I had zero interest in having a boy.  Whatever, it doesn't matter.  We've got a little baby girl on the way and I just can't wait to snuggle her, and see her with her big sisters, and oh my gosh what if she DOESN'T look like them?  That would be so weird.  I don't really see how it's possible with our gene pool, but I have no idea.

Here is the video of when we revealed the sex to our family and friends...

Yes, Miss Ryann was upset that candy didn't fall out.  Haha.  I'm pretty sure she was just a little overwhelmed by everything going on anyway.  And the video when we told the girls.  Sorry my computer wasn't cooperating so I didn't cut it any shorter.  But Ryann's reaction just cracks me up in this one too.

With the third being a girl, I think the most difficult thing for us right now is picking a name!  We've basically stopped talking about it because I don't know how we're going to agree.  I want a name that isn't in the top 100, and I have all these other ridiculous rules.  He has his own list that I have something against.  We're screwed.  But we'll figure it out.  I don't think not naming her is an option.  ;o)

A girl.  Another baby girl.

I love her.