Saturday, May 22, 2010

Feeling Swell!

My dad has a funny way...with no harm intended of course!...of complimenting pregnant women who have a sense of humor..."You're looking swell!" Well, that is just how I feel right about now, except that swollen might be a more appropriate term! Haha! The last week+ has played a number on my body and my feet are taking the brunt of the water retention, which btw, has started to really pack on the lbs. When you gain over 5 pounds in a week you know that something is up!

I went to my doctor earlier this week to see if the water retention was having any effect on my blood pressure...or vice versa, however it works. With Johnathan I put on a ton of water weight a few weeks prior to my due date, and my bp went way up so he ended up arriving 3 weeks early...I wanted to make sure that wasn't happening again with this one, or if it was to get prepared for an earlier than expected delivery.

Long story short, my bp has started to go up, nothing major yet, but something that will have to be monitored more closely. I have gone through a 2-dose round of steroid shots to help mature our little guy's lungs in case he makes an early appearance. I also had a sonogram done to measure the size of the baby (5 pounds, 5 ounces approx!) and to check on the fluid in my uterus...all looks great with baby and fluid. I also had a couple of non stress tests done on the baby...just measuring the heart rate for an extended period of time to check out where the baseline is and all...and that looks great too.

SO, what does this mean??? Just doing what I can to keep the water weight off as much as possible...extremely minimal salt intake, resting my feet, drinking lots of water myself, and just waiting to see what happens. I go back to my doctor Monday to check things out. Also, I have been having weekly visits from a nursing agency that comes to my home to check my bp, check the baby's heart rate and also to give me my weekly progesterone shot...I am waiting as I type for my sweet nurse, Stacey, to come and so I'll get to see what my bp is today. PLUS, I always have Aaron to check up on me...which he does, frequently, at my request! Sure is nice having a doctor in-house!

Pray that our little guy stays in at least another couple of weeks!!! And, if you're not too grossed out by seeing horribly ugly feet, check out these babies! Pretty nasty, right?!! ;)

YUCK!!! Haha!!!


Wednesday, May 19, 2010

A Noodle, a Raisin, What's Next...a T-Bone Steak???

(Thanks, Dad, for the steak inspiration, haha!)

This morning started off fairly normal...6:30 am and I hear the little pitter-patter of Johnathan's feet as he walked toward my side of the bed...his face bright and cheery as he said "hi!" and gave me his cutest little boy good-morning smile! Ever since he moved into his new bed his little body-clock goes off usually around 6, so getting the extra 30 minutes today was nice!

Breakfast went off without a hitch until I heard "pasa (raisin), nose", and saw Johnathan scratching at his right nostril...ugh! We've been through this song and dance before, with a noodle, so I knew what was coming if our own resident doc couldn't manage to remove the offending piece of food from Johnathan's nose. After examining his little patient, Dr. Aldape could see the raisin way back in Johnathan's nose, but couldn't suction it, one phone call later and we were directed to head to Johnathan's pedi who is probably the best pediatrician in the world! ;)

Thankfully, our beloved Dr. Cortes was able to retrieve the raisin with some really long and skinny forceps (which Aaron is going to have to invest in because although I don't think that a t-bone steak will fit up Monkey's nose, I am sure that he will try to shove other objects up there in the future, and having the correct instruments on hand to remove whatever crazy thing goes up there next will be a huge help!).

Anyways, long story short...and to document this occasion for future reference...Johnathan's nose is free of any foreign are his ears, Dr. Cortes checked them too just to make sure!...and since it was such an ordeal to get that dang raisin out, Johnathan is now peacefully taking an unheard of mid-morning nap! Haha! At least now I know how to get a good nap out of him...although I really don't recommend having to restrain your child who is kicking and screaming like a maniac because his nose is being dug into in order to get him worn out...but it did the trick today! Small favors!

I am off to go "nesting" while Monkey is asleep!


Friday, May 14, 2010

My {Nesting} Baby Shower

A couple of weeks ago the program that I help with, STARS, threw a baby shower for me...okay, really I helped put on my own baby shower with my friend Tiffany who is my STARS partner...but it was fun to make some of the stuff for my party! It was a very low-key shower...just how I wanted it to be...held at a local cafe here in CC. Here are some of the pics from the shower...unfortunately there aren't that many but you can still have a glimpse of what went down! ;)

My shower favor basket...filled with lots of sweet little bird's nests.

Baby blessing book for the guests to sign.

Chocolate eggs nestled in a twig nest and wrapped with tulle.

Dada and Big Brother outside of the cafe...great view, right?!!

My sweet friend, Tiffany.

My Shower Guests!

Sweet little Baby Love at the shower!

Mama, the "beached whale"...up on land!


There Really Is a Basketball in There!!!

Thanks to my wonderfully talented graphics designer dad, you can now see that I really do have a basketball belly!!! Haha! Thanks, Dad!

Basketball Belly Baby!!!

Thursday, May 13, 2010

My Basketball Belly!

Here are some updated pics of me and Belly Baby...who is turning into basketball Belly Baby!!! Haha!

Me at my baby shower at 31 weeks, 6 days along.

See, it really does look like I have a basketball in there!

Sweet little baby love on Mother's Day!

Mother's Day at 33 weeks!

Baby Aldape Under Construction, Expected Completion June 2010!!!

Sweet little belly baby boy!

33 weeks, 4 days along! Only 4 weeks and 1 day to go...but who's counting???!!!! (ME!!!!!!!!!!)

*Blessings, Grace*

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Mother's Day...a Little Sad...a Little More Sweet...a LOT to be Thankful for

It is Mother's Day...a day to celebrate moms everywhere, to show them our love and appreciation...and a day to make them feel extra special for all that they do for us. Personally I feel like I have the greatest mom on the face of the earth, and when I see other women with mugs or t-shirts that say on them "World's Greatest Mom", I think to myself...well, that can't really be you, because MY mom is the world's greatest! ;) And I really do think so!

I have been thinking a lot this week about motherhood...and the question that I've been asking is what really makes you a mom? Before Aaron and I were married, and before I ever had a sweet child growing inside of me, I thought this question was pretty black and white: a mom was a woman who had birthed a child and was raising it, or a woman who had already raised her kids and had grown children. Seemed simple. That's what a mom was...and then we had Gideon...a sweet, precious boy who never got to see the light of day but who was born into the radiance of the Light of Heaven. And, I knew...I was a mom. Although I never got to hear my sweet babe's voice, or see his beautiful eyes look up at me or feel the warmth of his little body I was a mother nonetheless. And it was bittersweet.

In the years following Gideon & Daniel's death and the passing of our sweet angel babies, Mother's Day was always really hard. Sure, I was just as thankful for my own sweet Momma, but for me personally it was a reminder that I was a mom, stripped of my children with a heart that was heavy because of my empty arms. And that experience has caused me to look at motherhood and being a mommy differently. It has made me more sensitive to the feelings of other women who have those same motherly longings. Women who might not have a child in their arms, but who are mommies just the same.

Today is a wonderful day to celebrate your own sweet mom, to remember motherly figures in your life that have made an impact on you and to encourage mothers who might be feeling the bittersweetness that today might bring.

Since Johnathan's birth the bittersweetness of Mother's Day is certainly a lot sweeter...and with the upcoming birth of another precious boy the sweetness is only growing. I am so thankful to be a mommy to all of my children. I love you, sweet Gideon. I love you, sweet Daniel. I love you, sweet angel babies. I love you, sweet Johnathan. And I love you, sweet Baby-Love. Six beautiful little people that each made me a mommy. And six beautiful reminders of what makes me a mother.

Happy Mother's Day to every woman out there who has loved a child with a mother's heart. That is what makes a mommy.

Many blessings,

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Monkey Goes to the Zoo!!!

A couple of weekends ago we met up with my sweet parents and sister, Greta, in San Antonio. This past Christmas our family focused on togetherness gifts, and our gift from my folks was a weekend trip to the zoo in San Antonio...sort of our "half-way" point in between both of our homes. Needless to say those types of gifts are the best, time with family is always a blessing, and making memories to enjoy for years to come is the best type of gift investment! Thank you SO much, Dad & Mom, for the fantastic weekend that you planned for us! It was amazing!

Like most little kids, Johnathan loves animals...he enjoys reading about them in his books, seeing the simple variety that we have outside our door, and watching them in movies. So, needless to say I knew that he would have a blast seeing the animals that he's read about in real life. And, just as I predicted, he LOVED his first trip to the zoo! I had so much fun watching him look at all the animals...and the more he asked "more a-mals" the happier I got. It was just the best!

Here we are enjoying the zoo & the rest of our fun trip in San Antonio, Texas!

Dada & Monkey on the Komodo Dragon!

Mama, Monkey & Dada...and Belly Baby too of course!

Monkey watching the monkeys!

My sweet momma and lovely sister, Greta!

We got to watch the trainers feed the was pretty cool, and man, those things make some very scary hissing noises!

Seeing the sweet little animals at the petting zoo.

Posing next to the elephant!

The ladies!

Sweet Belly Baby!

Our sweet little munchkin at 30 weeks, 6 days old in the belly!

Biggest and littlest sis!

My sweet "baby" sister, Grebbie!

Enjoying our last moments at the zoo...our little Monkey was getting a bit tired!

Mama & Monkey!

After a little rest following our trip to the zoo we got ready to go walk around the Riverwalk on the way to our dinner destination.

My sweet hubby and me with our newest blessing!

Johnathan and "Gampa" watching a parade that was going on in downtown San Antonio.

Tell me that these guys don't look alike! I LOVE this picture! Like father, like son!

Driving home Sunday afternoon...what a sweet boy...he LOVES his "Croaker" and "chupi" at naptime!

Thank you again Dad and Mom for the wonderful gift! We enjoyed ourselves tremendously and had the best time hanging out with you all! LOVE YOU, BIG TIME!!!!!!!!


Thursday, May 6, 2010

What {NOT} To Expect When You're Expecting!

I am sure that most of us have heard of or read the book, What to Expect When You're Expecting. Apparently it is the Bible of pregnancy books...I don't know first hand, since I haven't read it, but judging from how many copies have sold since it's original print date it seems that it's a pretty popular title. Even though I am uneducated in regards to this book, I do have some experience under my belt with actual pregnancy, so this is my own take on what {NOT} to expect...brought to you in my own humorous way, of course!

What {NOT} To Expect When You're Expecting
by Grace Aldape

Do {NOT} Expect to feel sane! Your hormones are going crazy, thus your emotions can be like a roller coaster, up one second and down the next. This is normal, just don't expect to feel normal, because, well, you won't!

Do {NOT} Expect to always be ladylike. There is nothing ladylike about letting out the more embarrassing parts of being pregnant...I'm talking gas people. Yeah, we all have it, and somehow or another it has to escape...but with an ever growing belly pushing Lord knows what out of the way, sometimes things have a way of "escaping" without your realization. So don't expect to always be prim and proper, unless of course you want to be totally uncomfortable as you try to hold it all in!

Do {NOT} Expect to keep your figure. I know, I know, it is common knowledge that pregnant women gain weight. But if you're proud of your cute little hips, don't expect them to stay that way...they're going to get bigger, that's just how things go. That baby has to come out some way, and most likely you'll be happy that your hips decided to spread a little when it comes time for that head to pop it's way out from "down there." You might get your pre-baby figure back after delivery...just don't expect it to stay all slim and trim while you're pregnant, that's just not natural!

Do {NOT} Expect to feel like doing what it is that was done to get you pregnant in the first least not in your first trimester. Don't worry, all of the love that you have for your husband is still there, it's just hard to feel like Super Woman when you're puking your guts out on a daily basis.

Do {NOT} Expect to have to do everything yourself...even if you're capable, let other people help you out. Let the people at the grocery store help you out to your car with your bags, let (ask!) your hubby to help with the laundry or dishes. Hello! You're making a baby! You're going to get worn out, so don't expect to do it all on your own.

Do {NOT} Expect to have to take everyone else's advice...listen to it, sure, but you and your husband get to decide what's best for you. People seem to come out of the woodworks, especially when they find out you're having your first, and they will tell you all sorts of crazy things...problem is, none of the advice is the same, and people are just telling you what they did because it worked for them. Find out what works for you, and you'll be alright.

Do {NOT} Expect to be understood by your husband as you go about "nesting" like a mad woman...yes, I am speaking from some major experience here. And, if you happen to make up a list of things to do before baby arrives that is, say, about 4 pages long, do NOT expect for hubby to be completely on board with all of the items..."is dusting all the baseboards and walls really necessary"...why, yes honey, it is!

Do {NOT} Expect to have your former not-so-healthy food cravings disappear just because you're pregnant and are supposed to be a super healthy veggie eater. Don't go junk-food crazy, but a donut or a Dorito here and there won't be all that bad...okay, maybe I'm saying this just to make myself feel better. And you know what, I feel better! Okay, moving on...

Do {NOT} Expect to go more than a couple of weeks without buying toilet paper...unless you just really stock up. You're going to be peeing every hour or so for the next 9 months, so long as you drink plenty of fluids like you're supposed to. That's a lot of T.P. people, a lot!

Do {NOT} Expect to be completely gorgeous and glowing all the time. Pregnancy brings up some interesting skin issues, and maybe if you're a lucky one you'll keep your pregnancy glow throughout, just don't freak out if some morning you wake up and find some weird brown splotch on your face that you didn't have before..don't worry though, it will go away once the baby comes!

Do {NOT} Expect to be able to go shoe-shopping later on in pregnancy...unless it's for some flip-flops. Those feet of yours just might get a little bigger, and that's okay...just don't expect to go on a shoe shopping spree until after your baby arrives.

Do {NOT} Expect to understand how you can love your baby so much when you haven't even met him or her yet. The amount of love that you are already feeling is only going to grow as your baby does, and by the time he or she is born you'll wonder how you ever survived without him/her. That's just love, and you're not supposed to understand how it works!

*Okay folks, my little mister is waking up from his nap so this will have to be it for now! Blessings! -Grace*

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Surrounded by My Boys

The last several nights Johnathan has been sleeping in our room in his pack'n'play. We're in a transitioning phase, moving him from his crib to his new big boy bed. Last night was his first time in the bed at night, but after only a few hours of trying it out it got a little too unfamiliar, and he just wasn't staying we moved him into our room where his pack'n'play was, and where he had slept the two previous nights as his room was in a state of upheaval as we took apart the crib, put the new headboard on the full-size bed in there, and put in a few child-proofing safety measures.

Anyways, as I was laying in bed I felt extremely blessed...laying to my right was my sweet husband, worn out from a hard day's work and resting my left was my precious boy, sleeping soundly from a good day's play...and moving around inside my womb was our little baby-love, tucked inside safely and securely and lulling me asleep with the knowledge that he was doing just fine and growing like little belly babies should. On the wall beside our bed were the reminders of the sweet babies we have waiting for us in Heaven, and looking at those images and seeing what I had to look forward to gave me a peaceful feeling. I had all of my precious boys around me...heck, even the dog was snoring on his rug on the floor beside our bed. It was wonderful, and I enjoyed being surrounded by my boys. I just love being a mommy to sons, and the wife to the most wonderful man on earth!


***Sidenote***I know that I've been quiet here on the blog lately, but that is not for lack of things going on around here. I'll try to catch y'all up to what we've been doing lately as time allows. And just for a quick preview, in the past weeks we've taken a trip to San Antonio to visit my mom, dad and sister, had a fantastic baby shower thrown for us, and have been busy in preparation for little baby brother...who, by the way, is going to be born in just about 5 weeks!!! June 11th is the date, and hopefully we'll be able to stick to it!