Tuesday, September 30, 2014

2nd Trimester Favorites

1.Leachco® Snoogle® Total Body Pregnancy Support and Feeding Pillow in Navy - This was a favorite in my first trimester and continued to be a necessity in my second trimester.  It really helped with my back and made me sleep so much better!
2.Sunbeam® Therapedic™ Electric Mattress Pad - Between having sciatic pain and finding out I possibly broke my tailbone at some point, this mattress warmer was a huge help!  The heating pad moves and gets too hot, so it was nice to be able to set the heated mattress cover on a low setting and relax my whole body.  I have slept with one of these for years now and I'm thankful I had it during my second trimester.
3. Tums and Phenergan - The second trimester brought on lots of heartburn.  I started taking Tums so much they became appetizers, snacks, and desserts.  The only kind I like are the berry flavor.  The texture of the smooth ones gross me out and the mint ones aren't near as tasty.  I am also thankful for Phenergan!  I would only take a quarter to a half of one, but it gave me just the relief I desperately needed.  In the 1st Trimester Favorites I took Unisom and Vitamin B6 for nausea relief.  However, it ended up giving me anxiety, paranoia,  and depression. I talked to Russ one day how I felt weird again and he mentioned how it was like when I was on night shift.  The next morning I woke up and remembered that Unisom had the same ingredient in it as many of the other sleep aid medications I took when on night shift.  Those medicines made me crazy, so I immediately stopped taking the Unisom and started the Phenergan.  It knocked me out, but taking just a tiny bit of it helped me so much and I returned to my normal happy self.  No more OTC sleep aids for me! 
4. Seamless Little High-Leg Brief Panty - Is it TMI that I'm putting underwear on here? Maybe. But I seriously love being comfy during my pregnancy and could not have made it without these undies from Victoria's Secret.  I discovered them before I was pregnant and have just gone up a size with my growing bump.  If you haven't tried these (pregnant or not) then go to Victoria's Secret right now and thank me later! ;)
5. Thann Aromatic Wood Rice Extract Body Milk (Body Lotion) - My body associated the coconut butter fragrance with being very sick, since I used it so much during my first trimester.  I could not stand the smell of it and most flower type fragrances bothered me as well.  When Russ and I stayed in Atlanta before going on our Babymoon, the hotel had the best smelling body wash and lotion.  It actually improved my sickness.  I knew I had to have it as soon as we got back!  $30 for lotion was pretty expensive, but after reading the description and knowing how much better it made me feel, I went ahead and got it.  I love this lotion!  It is so worth the money.  There are no artificial fragrances and is extremely moisturizing without being greasy.  
6. Liz Lange for Target Maternity Sleeveless Tank Top - The material of this tank top is like butter!  I wanted to wear this one tank top every day and night over all my other maternity tanks.  Just a few weeks ago, I went and bought it in every color.  I wear a tank top under my scrubs at work, to bed at night, and under many tops, so I knew I was getting my moneys worth.  I love how long and soft it is.  I know I will continue wearing them long after my sweet baby boy arrives. 

Of course there are other items that I needed, but these six items were products that I wouldn't want to go without.  Now that I'm in my third trimester, I still use most of these and know I will use them in any future pregnancies as well.  I would love to hear what your favorite products are that helped you in your pregnancy!  I'm always open to suggestions. :)



Monday, September 29, 2014

29 Week Bumpdate

How far along? 29 weeks 
Appointments:  8
Ultrasounds:  4
Maternity Clothes:  I need the Fall weather to get here asap! I have bought maternity clothes for when it is cooler and I guess that was a bad idea, because I'm hot anyways.  I'm ready for it to be in the 70's.  Although, I have found it hard to get boots on.  Luckily I have a sweet hubby who helps this poor mama out.
Stretch Marks?  Nothing new.  My stomach is itching, though, which means it is growing!  My stretch marks are mainly on my legs and they aren't that bad so far, so I'm not complaining.
Sleep:  It isn't that great, which has made me want to nap in the daytime.  I rarely sleep past seven and am up at least twice and usually much more during the night for those frequent bathroom trips. At least when Baby Swafford arrives I will get to spend my nights with a precious baby rather than alone in the bathroom...
Miss anything? Many things like being able to decide when to go to the restroom rather than running for it and having more energy through the day.  Right now I really miss being able to breathe.  Sweet boy likes to stay close to my heart (literally) causing my ribs to ache and having to keep my head elevated when I sleep.
Movement:  Some new movements I have felt this week is what I figure is a knee or elbow moving around.  It isn't a kick or a punch and feels so weird.  I tell myself there is a baby in there, but it still feels so surreal sometimes!
Food cravings:  Hello sweet tooth!!  All I want to eat this week is sweet, yummy, baked goods!  My body knows that this week was the first official day of Fall. And with that comes a strong desire for all things pumpkin.  I've already made some chocolate chip pumpkin muffins, had a PSL (don't judge, it was just one), Little Debbie's Fall cakes and Pumpkin Delights, candy corn, thumb print cookies (thanks to my madre), and Russ' birthday is this week, so there is NO hope for me!  I try to only treat myself to one sweet per day even though I feel like eating the entire box!
Symptoms:  My left sternum and ribs hurt pretty bad this week.  I am so anxious to know how he is positioned and if his head is as close to my heart as it feels.  Our 3D ultrasound is coming up and I'm so excited!  All my other symptoms are about the same.  The sciatic nerve pain and tailbone pain are better.  Fatigue, shortness of breath, and heartburn are also top on the list.  
What makes you queasy?  I have started taking iron supplements since my last visit showed my iron was low.  It has made me so sick at night.  I have started taking some goldfish crackers to bed with me to ease the nausea. 
Is there a baby bump?  I am amazed at how big my bump can grow overnight.  It is craziness!  I feel very large, but even today I had a lady in J.Crew tell me how she could help me find outfits for all my trimesters.  I told her I was in the last one and when I was due.  She was surprised.  I'm not sure if she was just trying to sell me clothes or make me feel good, but it made me happy.  God bless the women who say the right things, unlike one of the grandparents at my work telling me I must be having a big baby....
Labor signs:  Nope thank goodness!  I will take every pregnancy symptom in the world to keep from having any labor signs!
Belly button:  An innie for now ;)
Wedding rings on or off?  On, but have noticed my fingers still being puffy.
Happy or Moody:  Happy!! It is Fall Y'all!  Even if it was in the 80's today, there is just something about Fall that makes me giddy.  The first day of Fall is like a holiday to me and this past week I definitely celebrated. 
Looking forward to:  Our 3D ultrasound!  Oh how I can't wait to see his sweet face!
Memorable Moments for the week:  So many wonderful moments this week!  I got to see Ashley (my BF since I was 2) and catch up.  We ate at Cracker Barrel and she brought me a pumpkin cookie! Add that to my sweet list!  Then I went with my mom and mamaw to get our toes done.  I, of course, got me a big fat pumpkin on both of my big toes.  We had lunch and shopped a little.  I got three pumpkins (for our family of three) and mums!  My madre came up the next day and helped me with the nursery and painting my front door.  It looks so good!  Then we went and ate for Russ' birthday with my family in Market Square.  I also had my first Physical Therapy appointment. 

Mama Update
I went to my first physical therapy appointment.  I wasn't very impressed.  I did get two pillows out of it though, which seemed to help me at work quite a bit.  The physical therapist is going to let me see their women's specialist this coming week, which I am excited about.  She can help me get ready for labor/ delivery and probably has better recommendations on how to help me out.  I did get three stretches to do for homework, but I highly doubt they will help me much with my pain.  I don't think there is much that can be done.  Luckily, I know now how to ease my pain.  The sciatic pain rarely hits and I know how to prevent my tailbone pain.  The biggest issue right now is my ribs, but at this point I feel like I can make it being in the last trimester.  Everything seems so much more doable and I really try to listen to my body's cues of when to rest. 

Monday, September 22, 2014

28 Week Bumpdate

How far along? 28 weeks 
Appointments:  7
Ultrasounds:  4
Maternity Clothes:  After my yucky appointment (more on that later), I attempted to do some shopping with my Madre.  She had gotten a Motherhood Maternity gift card.  I really needed another pair of jeans, a dress for Fall, and dress pants.  However, I went down hill fast.  There weren't any dresses and the dress pants were no bueno.  Thank goodness I am a nurse and can wear scrubs!  I wanted out of there ASAP! I felt terrible.  With my sweet mama's help, I ended up getting some more jeans and a sweater.  After a drink and some popcorn from Target, I was feeling better and was able to get some more staple pieces including a casual dress.  I just love me some Target!
Stretch Marks?  Nothing new or bad.  We will see how the next three months goes, though.  Eeek!
Sleep:  Insomnia has started.  I'm getting up more often during the night to run to the bathroom and am always scared that when I get back in bed I will be lying there awake for the next few hours.  It seems like when my bladder gets full, I get to feel little baby kicks reminding me to get up.  He is a night shifter here lately and likes to party all night long, which doesn't help my insomnia (but in a way I secretly enjoy it). 
Miss anything?  Oh ya know I could make a list of things I miss, but I hear that I will miss being pregnant... Really?  I am already so ready for my sweet, cuddly baby to be here and have "me" back.  It'll be here before we know it.  I think right now what I miss the most is energy.  Baby Swafford must be growing like crazy!
Movement:  Week 27 was a very active week for our little boy.  My books say that he grew a whole inch that week, so maybe that is why.  I feel movement all over and cannot wait until my ultrasound to know how he is positioned so I can tell what is kicks and what is punches. 
Food cravings:  My cravings have gotten much better.  I really like fruit these days and eat bananas, apples, and grapes all the time.  I also have been on a tomato soup with grilled cheese kick from Jason's Deli for a few weeks now.  I could eat that everyday (even though I pay for it later with heartburn).
Symptoms: Heartburn, insomnia, random nausea, tailbone pain, sciatic nerve pain, rib and sternum pain, swollen feet (especially after a 12 hour shift), fatigue, and constantly running to the bathroom.  I make pregnancy sound lovely don't I? I'm hoping some physical therapy will help with a lot of my issues.  And the belly band I ordered from Zulily back in the middle of August is still not here or anywhere close to being to my house.  I have been so frustrated with their service and doubt I will be making any future purchases.  Oh and the newest symptom this week is blurred vision. Who knew that was a pregnancy symptom?!  I thought I was going blind, but after a quick google search I learned it is common in the third trimester.  Whew! 
What makes you queasy?  Still certain smells and some days I just feel nauseous without any triggers.  I think some days my hormones are higher and that causes it, but who knows. 
Is there a baby bump?  This bump sure has grown the past couple of weeks! I feel like there is already no more room for it to stretch, but three more months will prove me wrong. 
Labor signs:  Nope
Belly button:  The same.
Wedding rings on or off?  On, but sadly my fingers are getting puffy.
Happy or Moody:  More moody lately.  My poor hubby! Even his Margaritaville music got on my nerves the other day.  
Looking forward to:  Our 3D ultrasound!  I am so, so excited to see him!  It has been too long!
Memorable Moments for the week:  Meeting up with new mamas, Ashley and Paige.  They both have adorable baby girls and I am so looking forward to be joining the "mom club."  Russ and I had a lot of fun registering for baby items.  I looked more forward to getting baby stuff than getting married when I was a little girl.  I still can remember looking through the JC Penny catalogue at my Mamaw's at all the baby stuff.  It is so surreal that it is finally here and I get to be a mommy.  Also, I passed my sugar test! Woo Hoo!

Baby Update
So I had my big sugar test appointment.  I thought that drinking a nasty, sugary orange drink would be the worst of it, but it wasn't even that bad.  I found out that I am Rh negative.  This means I had to get a RhoGAM shot.  I didn't know my blood type and was surprised by the news.  I found out my Granny was also Rh negative and my uncle had to have blood transfusions because of it.  Thankfully, it doesn't usually have an affect with the first pregnancy and the RhoGAM shot should take care of any possible complications with future pregnancies.  I also got the Pertussis shot for whooping cough and blood taken for the sugar test.  Even though it wasn't one of my most enjoyable visits, I did get a physical therapy referral from my doctor.  This makes me so happy!  I can't wait to get some help!  We got to book our 3D ultrasound, as well, and I have been looking forward to that appointment my whole pregnancy.  I can't believe it is almost here!  My sweet boy, time is flying by!  You are worth it all, and I am so excited to meet you!

Saturday, September 13, 2014

Labor Day, Family visits, UT Game, and a Birthday Party

 It has been so busy lately!  Everyday seems to be jam-packed from morning until we hit the bed worn-out.  However, we have had so much fun! I have always wanted a full life and lately it is definitely full.  My heart is so full of joy and I'm so thankful this is my life.

While we were on vacation we found out that Russ had gotten on Law Review.  It is very difficult to get on Law Review and took so much hard work from him, which actually was right after we got pregnant.  It was a hectic time with him working full-time, going to school full-time, me working and going to school full-time, extremely sick from pregnancy, and on top of that preparing a huge article and taking a test for Law Review.  We knew it was the right decision for him to apply for it, but it was scary working so hard at something we didn't even know if he would get on.  I don't know how he did it.  He reminds me of those energizer bunny commercials because he just keeps going and going.  I am overcome by pride and emotion when I think of how hard my husband works to care for me and our son's future.  I am so undeserving of his love and God's blessing of giving him to me.  

After we got home, Russ not only found out that he made Law Review, but that his article was getting published.  Wow!  How impressive is that!  I wanted to do something special for him and he has been dying to go to the new Margaritaville in Pigeon Forge.  I knew Labor Day was the day to go.  We went shopping at Tanger Outlets then headed to eat for lunch.

I have been craving crab dip all Summer and they had it on their menu.  Oh my goodness was it good!

Cheeseburger in Paradise

Too hot for a scarf, but I am so ready for Fall!
Thursday of that week my parents and grandparents came up to help with the house.  Nesting is in full swing and I want everything organized.  They came and helped put up shelves and get some things off my honey-do list, since my honey is so busy.  We had a special treat that came up where Russ had gotten passes for the field.  The man who owned the place where Russ and I got married had contacted Russ for the passes and it just happened to be on the same day as when my family was coming.  Russ was able to get extra passes so we could all go see the field at Neyland Stadium be painted for the UT game.

Waiting for Russ at the Training Center.

My mom loves UT (to the point of painting her room orange and white growing up). She eats this stuff up! 

Dad, Granny, and Papaw looking at the field. 

The white had been painted and it was time to paint the orange.

Another unexpected surprise came on Friday when Russ found out that he would get to go to the game on Saturday and he had an extra pass for me.  We enjoyed it so much!  It is such a treat to be in the box and watching the game.  Though I have to admit, I love the food.  I have to restrain myself from taking foodie pics while we are there.  I was able to get an ice cream snickers bar that hit the spot!
My one foodie pic. ;)

After the game we headed to Target in Cleveland to register where we figured most of our family would go.  However, their scanner was down, so we just looked.  Then we headed onto my parents house for Zayne's pool party.  I love this little boy so much and can't wait to see how much more love my heart can hold for another precious boy.  I babysat Zayne for a couple years with my Mamaw, so he holds a very special place in my heart.  He says our baby is his Christmas gift.  I literally could cry thinking about him saying that... and thinking about him turning six!  Where does the time go?!

Life is busy, but we are even more blessed!


Friday, September 12, 2014

Jamaica Me Happy Babymoon

Russ and I had planned on going on a big vacation this year rather than many small ones.  We wanted to visit as much as we could before we started a family.  Last year, we went to Disney World (for me) and stayed in a resort that we wouldn't stay in with kids.  Then for Russ we went to New York City.  We always plan our trips ahead of time and get the biggest bang for our buck.  At the beginning of this year, Russ and I were planning our trip.  We wanted a relaxing vacation somewhere tropical.   We aren't really the all-inclusive couples resort type, but we also didn't want to go somewhere that had a ton of kids everywhere.  We had thought about going back to the Bahamas, since we had such a great time on our honeymoon.  I started looking at Groupons, flight prices, hotel reviews, etc. and Russ did the same.  He really wanted to go to Jamaica, but we didn't think we could afford it.  Then he saw a deal for The Jamaica Inn.  When he showed me the pictures of the this amazing little boutique resort on the beach, I couldn't believe it!  I thought those places only existed for the rich and in the movies.  I said, "Why haven't you booked it already?!"  The flight prices were cheaper than to the Bahamas and the deal was for the one week Russ could go on vacation.  It was almost too good to be true.  I think we ended up booking the last room.  Now some might say that it is coincidence, but so many things like this have happened to us that I just can't believe in coincidences.  Russ and I try to stay in God's will and although from the outside it might not look like we are trying to be thrifty, we always pray and try to find great deals for our budget.  Most of the furniture in our house has come from Craigslist, we got an incredible deal on my car after scoping the web for months, and I rarely pay full price for anything.  (My favorite deal here lately was finding the exact Pottery Barn curtains that I wanted for the nursery extremely cheap from Craigslist). I think God cares for me in all aspects of my life and although he might not care about the materialistic things, He does want us to spend our money wisely and pray about every decision we make (even about a vacation or curtains).  

Anyways, we never expected to get pregnant before this trip.  Russ would jokingly call it a "Babymoon" because we figured it would be our last big trip before we started a family.  I told him he could only call it that if we were pregnant.  Our plan was to save money up for a bigger house after this trip and the baby would come closer to when Russ graduated from law school (Dec 2015) and we moved a little closer to home with a guest bedroom.  However, God had bigger plans.  

I was amazed at how perfect the timing was for our Babymoon after we got pregnant.  I was 21 weeks, and although I still had nausea and some sciatic nerve pain, for the most part I felt great throughout the whole week.  I'm 26 weeks now and can't imagine traveling, so I am very blessed that the trip came at the perfect time.  

I worked from 7-3 on the Saturday we were leaving.  Our flight went out of Atlanta, so we decided to drive and spend the night, since our flight left early Sunday morning.  Plus, there is an Ikea store there that I needed to visit.  We had so much fun at Ikea.  I had never been to one, but knew I wanted some of the furniture from there for the nursery, since the daybed that would be staying in the nursery (which was also a buy off of Craigslist) had come from Ikea.  We ended up buying his changing table and shelf that day.  The shelf barely fit in my car, a centimeter more and it wouldn't have.  I was so thankful it all worked out!

Changing table - Check!

Lighting is terrible, but Russ looks so happy in this picture :)
I get very anxious flying when traveling until we reach our destination, but Russ always helps calm my nerves.  I thought everything was good after we got in our ride to the hotel, however, I had no idea how crazy the driver would be.  Being a back-seat driver and pregnant did not help the situation.  It felt like we would never get there and this week of pregnancy came with needing to run to the restroom every two seconds.  When we finally got there, I thought I wasn't going to make it.  I tried to remain calm during check-in and then they wanted to give us a quick tour to our room.  Thank God we were able to check-in early!  

As breathtaking as the views were, all I could think about was a toilet!  However, when they opened our door to our room, it literally took my breath away.  The shutters were open, I could see the beach, I could feel the breeze going through the room, and I was in awe.  I could have started crying or shouting for joy, but I tried to remain cool, calm, and collected like we had seen these kind of views our whole lives.  As soon as our "tour guide" left the room and I had finally made it to my precious bathroom, I demanded to know how much this room had actually cost thinking Russ had "lawyered" me into thinking we could afford this place.  He swore that it cost what I thought it had and I just couldn't believe we would be here for five days!! 

The view from our bedroom.  Take me back! 


Even a walk-in closet!
Who needs TV when you have a view like this?  There were no televisions in the bedrooms.
A panorama of our balcony.  There was a couch on one side and a desk on the other.  It wasn't this long ;)
We immediatly changed into our swimsuit and headed to the beach!  First on the agenda was to take a picture of board shorts and flip-flops to announce the gender of our baby.  However, there wasn't much wet sand to draw in and we were really ready to start enjoying our trip, so it was a quick photo-op.  It still turned out cute!   
Revealing that our sweet baby is a boy!

The rest of the trip consisted of five course dinners and music by the beach, a huge breakfast by the beach, lying under palm trees, snorkeling, relaxing on floats, paddle-boarding, rafting, drinks by the beach, a massage, tea and snacks, lots of relaxing, reading, and more eating.  It was Heaven!  There are a lot of selfies, so I will limit the pics, but we had a wonderful time!

Dinner the first night.

It was so fun to get dressed up every evening for dinner!
I loved my view!

Our first breakfast!  This is pre-tan...

The pool, but who needs that when you have the beach!

Private beach

Candlelight dinner, so pictures weren't great, but the atmosphere was perfect!

The view at breakfast took my breath away.

Panorama of breakfast

The hotel lobby area.

Back at the beach and look at those beachy waves! Love it!

Coconut water at the bar.
View from our room.

The walkway outside our room.

Miss Marilyn herself has stayed at the Jamaica Inn. This pic was up in the library.

Digging for a turtle's nest.  This was a spontaneous trip that our hotel provided.  It was such a fun surprise to see baby turtles!

Helping the turtles get to the water.

Russ was excited to see the boat from the GoldenEye Resort.  He would love to stay there some day. 

Last time on the beach! :(

Watching the sun set.

Live band every night at dinner.  Oh how I miss it!  It was Jamaica's Independence Day, so we were jammin'.

Last Dinner Selfie. Boo hoo.

We loved our water Captain Kirk and we found out on our last day that he used to be a professional photographer.  

Packing to leave.

Goodbye Jamaica we will miss you!

And your amazing dreadlocks! ;)
Best trip EVER!  So thankful we got this babymoon! Now bring on the baby!