Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Bravery and the two piece

At 24+ weeks my body is bulging from all corners. As much as it was a blessing to have no morning sickness, it comes with the curse of more weight gain. For the most part I have embraced my baby body, although the heavy price tag that comes with replacing my entire wardrobe has not been easy.
This past weekend, J and I took a mini-vacation to Maine. In the interest of saving money, we used J's family's trailer instead of splurging on a 4-star hotel. The weather was simply wonderful and called out for a beach day like no other. The one thing I haven't yet replaced are my hoard of bathing suits as I've been hoping to squeeze into what I already have. No such luck. Even with my largest of suits, I was definitely a wardrobe malfunction ready to happen.
Somehow though, I rocked it. I strutted my stuff, 20+lbs heavier, all day long. Screw maternity bathing suits, this belly was made to be seen. I scored myself my first tan of the season and somehow managed not to give the beach-goers more of a show than anticipated.
Upon coming home, I caved and spent another $90 on bathing suits from Victoria's Secret in a size larger than I'm used to. I am now poised and ready to rock this belly all summer long!

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Prom 2011 - Knocked up edition

I know this is slightly off topic - but since I'm powering through my exhaustion from last night, I felt like it was appropriate. Last night, I had the honor of chaperoning my high school's prom for the second time. And it was quite the honor. First, teachers have to be "invited" to go (mostly because the high cost of feeding us) and second, because it showcased what a unique environment I work in.
In 2000, I went to my own prom, and it was great. I was caught up in my then boyfriend's arms 90% of the night an spent the other 10% of the night posing for pictures with my friends. No where and during no moment do I recall a single interaction with a teacher or did I even want to. Flash forward 11 years to last night. I was like a superstar caught in the paparazzi action of my student's cameras.
Unlike the suburban utopia I grew up in, my students live in an entire different world. Most of them have never dressed up for a formal occasion, some haven't even been to the suburb where the prom was held, even though it is only one town over from the city. Many of them spent the entire year fundraising to pay for their $65 ticket because the price was so far out of reach. We spent the winter helping girls find dresses for free and donating our old gowns to them.
As I was monitoring the candy bar (great job for a pregnant lady ;)) I was surrounded by my students past and present. All wanted to pose for pictures with me, all wanted a hug, all wanted to congratulate me on Baby Weeks. Throughout the night, more of the same continued. The dance floor was not divided between cliques, but was a hot sweaty teenage mesh of kids just having fun. So much fun in fact that they encouraged us to do the "Dougie" with them and pulled us in the middle of their dancing circle. Yes, at an inner-city prom the teachers dance too, without a single eye roll or rude comment.
One of the more touching moments of the night came during dinner when a special needs student was awkwardly dancing alone. At my high school, this young novice would have been laughed at, snickered at, and scoffed at for being so different. Here, a group of boys got up from their meals and joined him, smiling and clapping along.
Working in the "ghetto" comes with many challenges, but it also has it rewards. And beyond the buffet of roast beef, chicken cordon bleu, creamy veggie lasagna and tiramisu I was rewarded with a warm heart, sore feet and a smile on my face.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Bargain Hunting

Most of you know I love a good bargain the way that I now love ice cream. It's hereditary (I mean both the bargain hunting and the love for ice cream). I swear my mom and I have more than one conversation a week where one of is absolutely gushing about how little we paid for something. It's sick. But it's how we roll. You can't stop it.
One of my best friends was in town from Chicago this past weekend and I took a personal day Monday to spend some QT with her. We had big plans on spending the day in Boston, walking around and seeing the Red Sox play, but with the 8 days of rain we're in the middle of right now, that was no longer an option. Instead we headed up to the outlets with little intention of spending any money. But spend (and save) we did.
My first big hit was at the Maidendform outlet where I stocked up on my ever expanding cups. Bras were $10 each and of a great quality. The cheap-o ones I scored at TJ Maxx were $12.99 and up so this was definitely a steal.
Next, we went to the Carter's outlet. I already had awesome deals with them online and that continued in store. I told Kim I was not allowed to spend more than $50 and for $46.98 I got baby Weeks his first zip up hoodie, 2 pairs of pants, a 5-pack of body suits, his first pair of khaki pants, and a couple more onesies I just couldn't pass up.
Finally, I tried my luck at the Motherhood Maternity outlet. The only thing outlet about this place was the shabby decor and worn carpet. The store was a disaster and sold the same things as the full price store at the same prices. Luckily, they had the pair of shorts in my size I was eyeing last week and a couple of 2/$15 tanks I can wear to my yoga class tonight!
Today, I'm proctoring the kids MCAS test - so you know what that means. Online shopping! :)

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

The magical disappearing belly button

Before becoming pregnant, I was well aware that my belly button may eventually "pop" out, but I was not aware that it slowly disappears first. I started this pregnancy with a pretty good looking belly button, nice and deep, well rounded, everything a belly button should be. Over the last month or so, it's been slowly rounding out to the point where there's hardly anything left. At this point, it's like there's this round disk in the center of my belly that is discolored around the edges from where it used to be "inside". I have no doubt that the day will come, sooner rather than later, that it will fully emerge from its disk-like shape and pop out like the Thanksgiving turkey dinner. But for now, I am like Pilate from Morrison's Song of Solomon, belly-buttonless and forever pregnancy curious.

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Another good appointment under my belt

I had my latest checkup last Thursday and everything was great again. She checked the heartbeat and measured my fundal height for the first time. Both measured right on target! I go back again next month for another check up and for the start of my third trimester.

As I progress through this incredible process, I am constantly in awe of the power of the human body, yet at the same time terrified by it. Jesse and I have really embraced our little one, but worry every day that something is still destined to go wrong. We're almost completely in the safe zone now and will definitely start to breathe easy in the coming weeks - the record for a child surviving pre-term is 21w5d and most hospitals will do what it takes to save a baby born after 24 weeks. At 22w1d now, every day our baby stays with us increases the chances of him living a long and happy life.

His kicks and nudges offer consistent reassurance, but there are days that he is stronger and most consistent than others, so it is still hard to relax 100%. But we're getting there, and that means the world to us!

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Just a quickie

I recently found a great website for more formal maternity clothes - Figure8maternity.com. I've been searching for a mid-range priced dressed to wear for my showers and for South's prom later this month. I think I found what I'm looking for: http://www.figure8maternity.com/viewItem.cfm?pid=1225100. Jesse said "It's very Megan", which is exactly what I want to hear. Now I wait for it to come in ;)

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

A little bit of this, a little bit of that

  • We go back into the Dr. Thursday for a routine checkup. I'm nervous. Big surprise.
  • Baby Weeks has been kicking me on a regular basis for the last couple of weeks, this makes me crazy happy.
  • Sunday night, Jesse took a quick break from studying for finals to spend some QT with me. We decided to indulge in Magnum bars (thanks to rec's from my mom, my friend Amie, and a whole lot of advertising). I was initially annoyed at the $5/box of 3, but after seeing that one bar has 70% of your daily allotment of Saturated Fat, I was pumped there were only three. Anyway, I indulged, and then WHAM! Super baby kick of awesomeness. I called Jesse out of his office and he came running just in time to feel the baby for the first time. :)
  • I had a great Mother's Day with my mom and became even more excited that next year, I'll be a mom, too!
  • My boobs are officially out of control. I've been falling out of my new bras for a week so got re-measured and picked up some cheap-o ones at Marshalls. 36C. Holy crap.
  • I've been on a maternity clothes shopping spree lately. I feel pretty good about everything I've bought to this point and I think after a couple tanks and shorts and one nice dress I'll be all set.
  • Jesse and I have been good at saving money lately. We're determined to get as much time off as possible to be good parents once Baby Weeks is born. That means sacrifices. I'm totally fine with no vacations and cooking in more if that means another week or two with my little one :)
  • I've survived year three of four of Jesse in law school. Next year will be even harder taking care of everything, and I mean everything and having a child. But I know I can do it ;)

Friday, May 6, 2011

Deep breathing 101

I finally went to my first prenatal yoga class tonight, and it was, different. Before this yoga experience I had participated in a year of heated, power-vinyassa flow. I'd leave every class dripping in sweat and aching from my fingers to my toes.

Tonight, was as they said, gentle. The holds were long and slow. The class gradually moved from one pose to the next. And it was. Air-conditioned.

Most of the women in the class seemed at ease, at peace, breathing deeply. I was fidgeting, my mind racing. I kept telling myself that this was good, this is what I need, but my competitive spirit bubbled up with every calming mantra.

I suppose one of the hardest things about pregnancy is slowing down. I have one speed: go. Slow isn't even in my vocabulary. I'm the one cleaning the gutters, lugging 50 pound bags of wood pellets, lifting weights 5 times a week, all the while keeping up a spotless home, doing loads of laundry and cooking 3 nutritious meals a day. It is in doing those things that I feel the most me.

I know there is a lesson in all of this. That I'll be begging for time to slow down once baby Weeks gets here. That I'll relish practicing my deep breathing. That I'll be begging for someone to make my dinner. With all of that in mind, I'm going to sign up for the 6-week prenatal class that begins on the 18th. I'm hoping to improve myself, I'm hoping to slow down. And who knows - maybe I'll even like it.

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Searching for the right work out

I've been pondering ways to spice up my workout routine lately. Pre-pregnancy I've been a work out nut since I can remember. From dancing and playing sports since I could walk to triathlons and half-marathons in the last couple of years, I am someone that NEEDS to move.

Although I've been having fun on my 2-mile course (I've now worked out 8 days in a row), running has been increasingly difficult lately. First, baby Weeks has been pushing against my bladder like crazy making each bit of the jog painful. Second, months without yoga has made the post-run even more painful. Thus, I've been searching for prenatal yoga classes. One offered in West Boylston at Central Mass Yoga is only on Monday nights and runs from 7-8:15 and when you calculate the 20 or so minute drive back home after class makes it a late night.

Then, a colleague recommended me to Mothers and Company (http://mothersandcompany.com/) also in West Boylston. They are a combination store/prenatal classes/child classes place that is made of win. Another colleague of mine who is due in December decided to sign up for tonight's Wednesday prenatal yoga class. The drop in rate was $15 which was less expensive than most around and if we liked it, they offer a 5-week rate for $67 which is totally doable.

Walking in, I was impressed right away. They carry a great selection of nursing, cloth diapering, organic, and maternity wear. Then, they have a long hallway of different classrooms and even a pool! Unfortunately, that's where my journey ended. Our instructor was a no-show! The woman at the front desk was completely apologetic and kind, she offered both of us a full refund, a free class Friday that would have ice cream to follow, and some sort of gift certificate.

Check back after Friday night for a full update (hopefully) on what the yoga experience is truly like!