The Beans

15 Weeks pregnant with twins

015 014

Per whattoexpect.com

Baby Is Looking More Like a Baby
Curious why your body is finally looking pregnant? It’s because at 15 weeks pregnant your baby is quickly growing bigger each week — he or she is as long as four and a half inches right now. Need a better visual (and a snack)? Hold a large navel orange in your hand — that’s how big your little darlin’ is. (Now that you’re done looking, peel that orange and eat it for a delicious two servings of vitamin C!). And with each passing week, your fetus is also looking more and more like the baby you’re picturing in your dreams. By now, the ears are positioned properly on the sides of the head (they used to be in the neck) and the eyes are moving from the side of the head to the front of the face — where they’ll soon meet your loving gaze.

So what keeps your baby busy all day? Mostly, your fetus is in rehearsals — practice, practice, practicing and getting ready for that big debut. Babies practice breathing, sucking and swallowing so that when they leave your comfy womb and move into your comfy house, they’ll have the skills necessary to survive. Your fetus is also holding daily aerobics classes — kicking, curling toes and moving those little arms and legs – but because he or she weighs so little (a bit over two ounces), you won’t feel the fetal movements going on inside your abdominal gym

The Bump – 15w4d

Sunday morning.  No make-up.  Right after an hour long walk with the boys.  And a weird leaning back situation.  This picture is a hot mess.

15

But whoa…look at that belly!  This girl is really starting to feel pregnant.  It’s so funny…in my first trimester, I would sometimes forget I was pregnant.  I was always cognizant we had two Beans on the way but I would fail to remember that they were growing in my body.  But now…this belly is a constant reminder.

Doctor’s Appt

Weigh Gain: 2 lbs.  This puts my grand total at +7lbs.  That’s not a great number given the fact that I wasn’t sick at all the first trimester.  The doctor said they like to look at the number as an average and most women start out gaining small amounts but catch up quickly.  I need to start paying attention to what I’m eating and really focusing on nutrient dense calories as opposed to empty carbs.

It was a standard appointment.  Pee, weight, blood pressure (110/72), listen for their heartbeats..  The doctor put the doppler on my belly and instantly picked up Lima Bean’s heartbeat.  It was clear and strong and I could have listened to it forever.  It took a couple of seconds to find Butter Bean, but there it was.  A constant thumping, swooshing sound that was music to my ears.  I smied.  Ya know, when you smile and cry at the same time.  (It’s not my prettiest face, btw.)

I’m measuring at around 18 weeks with a singleton.  I’ve read that twin pregnancies often measure 5-7 weeks ahead so I’m a little behind, but not much.

We grilled the doctor on what OTC meds I can and cannot take.  Miralax every day!  GasX for the win!  And then we were told our next ultrasound would be at 19 weeks, not 16 as we believed.  whomp, whomp.  Major sad face.  I selfishly want to know what these Beans are!  But this one is the big one.  The anatomy scan.  They will look at all the babies major organs, their little brains, their spine, etc and they will also check to make sure my parts are doing their job.  And they can also tell us the gender(s).

I’m guessing I won’t get much sleep in December in anticipation of this appointment…but I have pinned the cutest little gender reveal idea for our families!

How I’m feeling

Anxious. I blame this stupid cold!  A couple of weeks into my first pregnancy, I caught a wicked headcold.  The worst symptom was a horrible cough that kept me awake all night and reduced me to tears more than once.  I couldn’t take anything and it was total misery.  A week or so after that we found out I had lost the pregnancy.  So I supposed I’m having a bit of deja vu with this illness because the symptoms are the same.  And I guess it’s normal to feel a bit anxious about our babies.  Once I heard the heartbeats, I felt better.  Back to being annoyingly positive!

The crud lasted over a week.  Lots of water, lots of coughing, lots of sneezing, lots of outfit changes.  Yes, we have a brand new symptom.  We’ll file this one under I don’t want to talk about it.  Bottom line, I need to do more Kegels.

My belly is pretty tender due to the Lovenox injections and I’m still having some growing pains.  But the body is feeling pretty good otherwise.

Food

Operation “stop eating garbage and carbs” is in full effect!  I’ve coasted on the carbohydrate highway long enough.  I’m feeling really good and I’m hungry all most of the time.  So I need to make it a priority to fuel myself with good stuff rather than Kraft mac & cheese (soooo good!) and Mrs. Ts (SOOOOOOOO GOOD!).  I’m not giving it all up…I’m just cutting it back.

I made this Garlic Ginger Shrimp Stirfry with broccoli and red peppers and served it with some farro.  I think it was the first non-comfort food I’ve made in a few months.  Jerry was clearly thrilled (he ate 3 helpings) and it felt good to eat a balanced meal.

We had a little Friendsgiving celebration and my girlfriend didn’t cut any corners.  It was a full fledged Thanksgiving meal and was SO amazingly good.  I had 1 (full) plate of food and was so uncomfortably stuffed afterward.  Grossly overstuffed.  I need to pace myself on Thursday.

Like: Mad Mex fish tacos and I are in love.  And their black bean dip is my BFF. Clementines, beef, Triscuits, cottage cheese, berries, pizza

Don’t like:  quinoa, fish

Sleep

Pregnancy dreams are in.sane.  So crazy vivid and it takes a few minutes upon waking up to realize they’re not real.  I’ve had some bad ones that leave me shaking and some good ones where I can’t wait to fall back to sleep to see how they end.

I’ve taken a 1/2 tablet of Unisom a few nights this week to get me through my cold and it worked wonders.  I wake up with a raw, dry throat (Jerry & I are having snoring contests) but I sleep hard.

Exercise

Pretty nonexistent.  Besides having the crud, it’s been like 11 degrees here.  I wouldn’t be walking around in this chill if I were 100% healthy.  My fitbit thinks I’ve jumped ship.  We did get a warm-up yesterday (65 degrees in November…oh yes!) and I walked for an hour.  It was a little much…my lungs are still cruddy and the hills killed me.  I’m better off doing several small walks for 20 minutes or so.

Mood

I think I’ve been in a great mood!  I get moments of crankiness but they pass quickly.

Gender Predictions

Jerry is so petrified of having 2 girls that I’m totally convinced that’s what we’re having.  I know he’ll get over that fear quickly but when we talk about them, he just shakes his head at the thought of 2 little princesses taking over his life.  Of course, I would secretly be thrilled!  20 days till we find out!  EEEEKKKKKK!

The Beans

14 Weeks pregnant with twins

003   004

 

Per whattoexpect.com

Baby Is Standing Up Straight
Growing by leaps and bounds, your baby is leaping and bounding. Now the size of your clenched fist, your baby is on the move almost constantly — and those movements are a far cry from those jerky twitches of last trimester (though you won’t feel any of them for weeks to come). They are now ballet-like, smooth and fluid. Speaking of ballet, it’ll be years before you’ll start nagging your offspring to stand up straight — but unbelievably, he or she is doing it right now, without any prodding! No slouch anymore, your baby’s neck is getting longer, helping his or her head stand more erect. This gives your fetus a more straightened-out appearance.

Baby’s Sprouting Hair and Lanugo
By week 14 of pregnancy, your baby could be sprouting some hair (though the final color may not be determined until birth) and the eyebrows are filling in, too. Hair growth isn’t limited to the baby’s head, though. He or she is also covered with a downy coating of hair called lanugo, largely there for warmth. Not to worry — you won’t give birth to a monkey: As fat accumulates later on in your pregnancy (the baby’s fat, not yours — though that will accumulate, too), it will take over the function of keeping your baby toasty so most of the lanugo sheds. Some babies, though — especially those born early — still have a fuzzy coating at delivery (it sheds soon afterward).

Other developments this week include a roof of his own (inside your baby’s mouth, that is) as well as intestinal activity: His intestines are producing meconium (which is the waste that will make up his first bowel movement after birth).

The Bump – 14w4d

IMG_0944

Well hello there, pointy bump!  I think the waistband on my leggings is making it look so weird.

It’s funny, the bump is all balled up right in the front.  Like you took a cantaloupe and put it under my skin.  I haven’t filled out much on the sides yet.  I’ve been using coconut oil after every shower to help keep the stretch marks under control.  Thus far, I have none.  Yeah, I know…it’s early.

I had my first “outing” this week at work.  A co-worker asked my boss if I was expecting and then she personally congratulated me.  She said “I saw you the other day and noticed a little extra weight around your belly.  You’re in such good shape so I figured you had some news.”  In such good shape???  That’s cute 🙂

Maternity Clothes

My Mom generously offered to take me shopping for some maternity clothes.  These were the first pieces I didn’t buy blindly off the internet.  It was nice to try a bunch of different styles of shirts and pants and see what fits my body best.

I’m not a big fan of form fitting shirts pre-Beans so I was surprised that I liked the long sleeve, bump hugging t-shirts.  Perfect base to throw a long cardigan over.  And I totally shocked myself with full panel pants!  I like that they go over my already expanding belly and keep everything smooth and even.

And, I bought a new bra.  Just one for now because I want to see how I like it (and it was expensive).  I asked one of the sales associates at Nordstrom to measure me so I had a better idea of my actual size.  I took off my shirt and she took one look at the poor girls shoved into my bra and said “Oh my.  That’s awful”.  Turns out I’ve graduated from a full B to a modest D. Yes, I said D!   I couldn’t stop laughing…and neither could Jerry when I told him.  I probably could have fit into a C cup but I’m only 14 weeks.  They’re not getting smaller anytime soon!   And let me just tell you, I’m so much more comfortable!

How I’m feeling

Overall, still great.  Don’t hate me because I’m a happy pregnant person.  Most days are pretty darn fantastic…just a few little irritants here and there.

I wanted to avoid getting into the details of my bodily functions on this little blog but what the hell?  It’s life, it’s gross…deal with it.  I have gas.  I told Jerry I feel like a whoopee cushion that won’t deflate.  It’s all trapped in there and can’t escape and it’s awful.  You’re not supposed drink carbonated beverages because it apparently makes it worse.  But that’s the only thing that helps me.  So if you see me drinking a ginger ale, trust that I’ll be sounding off like a 14 year old boy in a burping contest. This and my back up digestive system will be the #1 topic addressed at next weeks doctor’s appt.

I’ve had some heart palpitations.  Just a few here and there.  #2 topic for the doctor’s appt.

The knee thing is going away.  The claw toes are still clawed.  The round ligament pain is there but not terrible.  I’m just bloated and gassy.

Food

I’m hungry!!  All the time!!  YAY!!

Healthy Food and I are friends again.  I’m back to eating a salad almost every day and chicken is not the devil it was a few weeks ago.  Shrimp sound delicious.

Likes:  Juicy fruit – Clementines, apples, blackberries, grapes…wishing more was in season right now.  Pizza (always), salad, greek yogurt, Thomas’ original english muffins, orange juice, dark chocolate almond milk

Don’t like…fish. That’s about it!

Sleep

It’s been all over the place.  Some fantastic nights…some nights like this.  Awake at 1:30.  Back to sleep by 4.

005

Baby purchases

I saw this beauty on Craigslist and it was a bargain at $35!  I don’t love the color but we Jerry can paint it.  It’s really sturdy and well build and is the perfect size for the nursery.

FullSizeRender

Speaking of the nursery, I also found this print on RH Baby and was instantly smitten!

Baby Elephant

Could you ever be in a bad mood looking at this little guy???

I didn’t want the nursery to be too cutesy or “baby-ish”.  And I’m just in love with these modern, sweet, simple photos that are perfect for a baby’s room but will transition easily to other parts of the house once they’re older.

Baby Giraffe Little DarlingBaby Zebra Little Darling

I ordered 6 prints from The Animal Print Shop, which was much less expensive alternative than RH Baby.

High/Lows

High…getting started on the nursery!  We’re moving Jerry’s office downstairs and then we can work on getting things set up

Low…another cold!  UGH!  This one is bronchitis (according to Dr. Google).  At the very least, it’s crazy chest and head congestion.  I imagine the only thing worse than getting sick while pregnant is getting sick with two little munchkins to take care of.  Better suck it up, Buttercup.

Jerry

Jerry got a new job! He really liked his old job but this one leaves more room for growth.  And he gets a company car!  He works so hard and it’s fantastic that he can be rewarded for that. I’m so proud of him!!

Cooking, Uncategorized

Apple Cinnamon Oatmeal Muffins

002

If you like your muffins to taste like cupcakes, please move along.  There is very little sugar in this recipe and it’s just perfect for me.  But I’m not a huge fan of sweet.  There is lots of wholesome goodness packed in a small package. I’ve topped them with a little butter and they are fantastic…but they’re pretty tasty all by themselves.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees

Combine the following dry ingredients in large bowl, mix well

1 ¼ cup rolled oats
1 cup whole wheat pastry flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
2 Tablespoons ground flax seed
1/3 cup chopped walnuts

Combine the following wet ingredients in a separate bowl, whisk to combine.

1/2 cup milk (I used 2%)
6 oz vanilla greek yogurt (should be @ ½ cup) – I used an 5.3 oz individual Chobani cup
1/3 cup brown sugar
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
2 Tablespoons honey or maple syrup
2 eggs

Sauté the following in skillet until the apples are soft.

1/4 cup organic coconut oil
1 apple, chopped
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon

Add the sautéed apples and wet ingredients in with the dry and stir to combine. Don’t overmix.

Spoon batter into lined or greased muffin tins (I used mini muffin tins).

Bake for 15-20 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.

The Beans

13 Weeks pregnant with twins

Second Trimester baby!  I can’t believe I’m in it!  I get all teary thinking about how lucky we are to have made it this far.  Wow. Seriously…just Wow.

 003  004

Per whattoexpect.com

Fetal Growth Rates

What’s up with your baby? Well, besides being as large as a peach now, that big old noggin of hers is now about half the size of her crown-to-rump length (that’s one reason why your little peach looks more like an alien from outer space at this point). By the time you give birth, her body will catch up, measuring three-quarters of her total size. But don’t compare your fetus with the fetus next door. Starting about now, babies begin growing at different paces, some faster than others, some more slowly, though they all follow the same developmental path.

Baby’s Vocal Cords Are Developing

What else is going on in there? At 13 weeks pregnant, tiny bones are beginning to form in her arms and legs. Because she can move them in a jerky fashion, she may be able to get her thumb into her mouth (a habit that may come in handy for self-soothing when she’s a newborn). Your baby’s intestines are also in for some big changes. Up till this point, they’ve been growing in a cavity inside the umbilical cord, but now they’re moving to their permanent (and more conveniently located) address, in your baby’s abdomen. And to serve your growing baby’s needs, the placenta is also growing. It weighs about an ounce now and will weigh one to two pounds at birth (something else you’ll soon be able to blame your weight gain on!). Also developing this week: your baby’s vocal cords (the first step toward saying, ‘I love you, Mommy!’). Because sound can’t travel through your uterus (your baby’s current habitat), you won’t be able to hear any sounds or cries just yet, but oh boy (or girl) — those vocal cords will get a good workout once baby is born.

Bump

We’re at that annoying point where the maternity clothes are too big and the regular clothes are too small.  I’m rotating about 3 outfits right now.

A couple notes about these pictures.  1.  They are very awkward to take.  Or maybe I’m just awkward.  2.  I was actually thinking I was looking pretty small until I saw this photo.  Oooffa!  The picture doesn’t lie.  3.  I had a bit of a sob fest before this picture, hence the puffy eyes and Medusa hair.

And I think I’m doing them wrong.  I’m actually 13w6d in this picture, so almost 14 weeks.  I’m going to try to start taking them over the weekend so I’ll be at the midpoint for the week.

003

How I’m feeling

I’m still feeling pretty fabulous!

I’m having some non-Bean related issues that are annoying.  I have a jacked up knee that tend to get sore when the weather changes (cue the old as dirt jokes).  I’ve dealt with this knee thing since college.  And I have 2 messed up toes…I don’t know what the deal is with these stupid toes.  My pinky toe and my “ring” toe on my left foot have curled under over the past year like two little a claw toes (it’s very attractive).  If I use a spacer between the ring toe and the middle toe, they’re ok.  But I should probably see a podiatrist at some point.

I’m having some growing pains in my stomach.  In addition to the round ligament pain, my abs are sore like I’ve been maxing out on my planks.  Rest assured, I haven’t done a plank in months!

Lack of digestion still sucks.  I only get really cranky about it after 4 or so days.  Please don’t tell me to drink more water/take a probiotic/eat more fiber/buy prunes…been there, doing that.  It just is what it is…

New symptom for this week is shortness of breath.  Jerry asked me the other day why I kept sighing.  Normally, this is a sign that I’m feeling overwhelmed or anxious but everything is peachy.  I told him that I didn’t even notice it.  Then I was walking with Jacob up a (low-grade) hill and was totally out of breath at the top.  Turns out, it’s a normal part of pregnancy!  per whattoexpect.com  pregnancy hormones (the usual suspect) stimulate your brain to increase the frequency and depth of your breaths, allowing you to take in more oxygen for your growing baby babies-to-be. Those hormones also swell the capillaries in your respiratory tract and relax the muscles of the lungs and bronchial tubes, making you feel like you’re sucking wind after nothing more strenuous than a trip to the fridge.

Baby purchases

I told Jerry we should be purchasing a case of diapers each month to create ourselves a nice little stockpile.  Then Stephanie sent me a ebates notice that diapers.com has double cash back & $10 off your first diaper order.  So yeah, I bought diapers this week.

Food

I enthusiastically proclaimed this week “Friday night we’re having meatloaf, mashed potatoes and brussel sprouts for dinner!”,.  Jerry’s response…“Well that sounds…light”.  Poor guy is just begging for grilled chicken salad.  It’s coming, I promise!

I know, this plate of food looks disgusting.  I’m posting it anyway.  It was amazing!

001

After our light Friday night meal, we had yogurt.  Coconut with almonds and chocolate chips.  Yes, I did!

002

We went to Sienna Mercato for dinner on Saturday.  We had a 2 hour wait and I was ready to eat my hands by the time we sat down.  The waitress came over to take my order.  “I’ll have a turkey meatball slider, mac & cheese, a salad with ranch and an order of fried pickles.  And I’m pregnant so don’t judge”.

All for meeeeeee!

003

I only ate the salad, a few bites of mac & cheese and 200 fried pickles.  Not the healthiest meal.  The slider and remaining mac & cheese were fabulous reheated the next day!

I also had a very health conscious friend ask me if I was eating a super clean diet due to the Beans.  BAHAHAHAHAAAAAAA!  Sorry, dude…no.  I’m eating carbs and cheese like it’s my job.  But I love fruit!  His response…”fruit has tons of sugar”.  Yes, yes it does.   Men are clueless about the power of hormones…it’s cute.

Speaking of fruit, Clementines are my favorite thing right now.  I could eat a truckload of them!

Love:  honey crisp apples, salad with ranch dressing, bagels and cream cheese, ground beef, clementines, egg sandwiches, yogurt, anything spicy.

Almost like:  chicken, shrimp, salad w/o ranch

Don’t Love:  fish, HB eggs

Exercise

Just walking.  65,415 steps this week and 5 days of 30+ active minutes.  I ordered some prenatal yoga DVDs…I’m super excited to try them out.  (Chiquita…come on over to the Lot256 yoga studio!)

Sleep

Sleep is mostly good. Check out my rockin Friday night!

005

3 potty trips and a bunch of flopping around…but 9 hours of zzzzzzzzz.  Bliss!

Mood

I’ve been kind of a pill this week.  Not the whole time but I definitely have moments.  Jerry said I haven’t been too bad and he would know.  I’m still pretty emotional.  I think about finding out the gender of the Beans and I start blubbering. I watched Nine Months this weekend (that movie is super ridiculous) & when Hugh Grant is watching a video of the ultrasound and gets all choked up…game over.

High/Low of the week

High…after a trip to IKEA, we have a pretty good idea of what we’re doing, furniture wise.  Can’t wait to find out what these Beans are so I can get to decorating!  I’m still thinking we’re having one of each.

Low…just my dumb claw toes

The Beans

First Trimester Observations

As we’re officially in the second trimester, I wanted to jot down some notes about Trimester One.  So I can look back in another 13 weeks and laugh…

Not everyone gets morning sickness

I read a lot of blogs and have read hundreds of pregnancy journeys.  When I would get to one where the expectant Mom gleefully exclaimed “I can’t believe I haven’t gotten nauseous or sick one time!”…I’d just shake my head.  Shut. UP!  Just shut up, you big dummy.

So I completely understand if you want to throat punch me after reading that I didn’t really get sick.  I had a few moments of dizziness and nausea and honestly, I can’t imagine feeling like that all day, everyday for 10, 12, 18, 36 weeks.  I am so sorry for those of you who have suffered (my poor Chiquita). 

I didn’t stuff my face

I’ll admit, I was really looking forward to this part.  This mama loves to eat!  And after reading When You’re Expecting Twins… where I was instructed to eat 582 million calories a day, I figured it wouldn’t be much of a problem.  Considering I had a pretty hefty appetite to begin with. 

But I haven’t really been all that hungry.  Definitely not ravenous.  I’m not missing any meals, but I get full quickly.  There haven’t been any of the wake up in the middle of the night to nosh sessions I have read about.  And I’m usually up for a few hours before I eat anything.  Booooooooo!  I’m 100% ok with that changing.  And I expect it too.  I’ll be smack dab in the middle of my second trimester during the holidays!  Strap on the feed bag!

I don’t pee a lot

At least not anymore than I did BB (Before Beans).  I have gotten up at least once to pee in the middle of the night for as long as I can remember.  I drink a lot of water and I know that contributes to it.  And I have a teeny bladder and I can’t stand feeling that it’s full.  So I guess I’m used to going a lot. 

TMI alert…But the real thing that has surprised me is the volume when I do go.  It’s just not very much.  Even with all of the water I drink.  The doctors seems unconcerned so I guess I should be too.  But I think it’s odd. 

OK, enough about pee.  Let’s talk about boobs

The girls are out of control

They weren’t lying about this one.  I was excited about the big part…not so much about the sore part, but come on. How bad could it be?

They’re big, but not in a it’s so cool to finally have big boobs kinda way.  Big enough to make my bras suck.  Big enough get in my way.  Big enough to make my shirts look weird.  But not big enough to be fun. And they hurt, a lot.  I know this is gonna get way worse, too.  I’m just gonna say it.  Big boobs are overrated.

Moving on…

I’m not turning into a total head case

I am shocked, SHOCKED at how relaxed I’ve been these first 12 weeks.  By nature, I’m very anxious and a horrible worrier.  These Beans kinda took over and just said “Chill out, Mom…we got this”.  I’ve made the conscious choice not to read sad stories and worst case scenarios.  The internet is a scary place and if you let yourself get sucked in, it can ruin everything.  This is my story, no one else’s.  My experience is mine (and Jerry’s) alone…and it will turn out the way it’s supposed to.  It makes no sense to fixate on bad stuff.  I know the risks involved.  I know the potential issue that could arise.  But I’m taking things one day at a time and enjoying the ride. 

All I can do is pay attention to my body and take good care of it.  Not to worry Beans, I’m on it!

Pregnancy agrees with me

I really like being pregnant!  I think the changes that are happening to me are pretty cool.  And I’m digging the bump.  Grow belly, grow!  I may have mentioned a few times before…my skin and hair and nails LOVE being pregnant!  I haven’t been super grouchy.  I’m in a pretty fantastic mood most of the time.  Go ahead, say it.  Shut up, you big dummy!

I know, let’s talk in March.  I’m a big fan of complaining and will be doing plenty of it as the symptoms show up:).  No need to throat punch me yet…

Weekend

Halloween 2014

Of all the holidays there are to celebrate, Halloween would be my least favorite.  I don’t love candy, I despise dressing up, I’m soooooo OVER everything pumpkin (way to ruin a good thing, America) and for me, it symbolizes the death of warm days. 

The only redeeming thing about Halloween for me is 1) scary movies and 2) kiddos is costumes.  Oh and this year, it was our coming out party!

011 

I saw this shirt before I was even pregnant and saved it to my Etsy favorites just in case.  Sensing a trend here?  I’m kind of clairvoyant.  I ordered it as soon as we found out about the Beans and I couldn’t WAIT to dress up this year! 

We are now FB official…guess that means we’re really pregnant!

The Beans

12 Weeks pregnant with twins

The baby files are no longer secret!  And we hit our first goal.  12 weeks!  Just about 1/3 of the way there…seems surreal.

 008   009

Per whattoexpect.com

By now your baby weighs a full half-ounce, with a crown-to-rump length of about two and a half inches — about the size of a large plum. It’s hard to believe (especially from the outside, since you’re probably barely showing at this point), but your baby has more than doubled in size during the past three weeks.

This week marks a turning point for your baby. At 12 weeks pregnant, the herculean task of developing new bodily structures is nearing an end, as most of your baby’s systems are fully formed – though there’s still plenty of maturing to do. Now comes the maintenance phase, during which your fetus’ systems continue to mature for the next 28 weeks and the organs get to work. For one thing, the fetal digestive system is beginning to flex its digestive muscle — literally — as it starts beginning to practice contraction movements, a skill your baby will need after birth to push food through the digestive tract. The bone marrow is busy making white blood cells — weapons which will one day help your baby fight infection once he’s out of your safe haven (including all those germs passed around the snot-nosed playgroup). And the pituitary gland at the base of the brain has started producing the hormones that’ll enable him (or her) to make babies of his (or her) own babies in a couple of decades or so.

Bump

Here is the first official bump photo!

028

Not so big in the morning but by 8:00pm…whoa.  It’s big.  My uber slow digestive tract is contributing to the bigness, which is really annoying.

Ultrasound – 11w6d

The first ultrasound I’ve ever had where I got to keep my pants on!

SOSCIAJENNIFERL20141028142711653

Lima Bean – 4.9 cm long, measuring 11w5d, HR 153

SOSCIAJENNIFERL20141028143024489 (1)

Butter Bean – 5.5 cm long, measuring 12w1d, HR 167

*For those of you needing a little help with the acronyms…cm=centimeters; w=week; d=day; HR=heart rate.  

Aren’t our babies beautiful?!?!  Hands down, this was one of the coolest things I’ve ever seen!  And yes, I know things just get way cooler from here.  Those little beans were flipping and flopping all over the place.  We got to see their little arms and legs and spines.  Butter bean had her legs crossed, which now makes me believe she’s a girl!  I just love them so much…

Twin Stuff

So let’s talk a little bit about our whole twin situation for a minute.  I’ve been getting some questions so I’m hoping this helps.

Our twins are not identical.  Identical twins (or Monozygotic twins) occur when a single sperm and a single egg hook up and form a blastocyst.  This “blast” then splits in two, creating 2 separate embryos.  Identical twins will always be the same sex.  Obviously.

That did not happen with us.  Our RE indicated that, due to my age and other factors, the likelihood of multiples was very low. He suggested we transfer 2 of our little “blasts” for the greatest chance of a successful procedure.  We all know how that turned out.  Of course these “blasts” could have split once they were transferred, leaving us with 4 babies (or more!).  But not to worry, we have confirmed that did not happen!  Whew!

So our twins are fraternal (or dizygotic). They each have their own placenta, which is providing them all of the blood and nutrients they need.  And in my case, the placenta is posterior.  This means it’s attached to the back of my uterus and I should be able to feel the babies move sooner than later.  If the placenta is in the front (and in front of the babies), it can take longer to feel them wiggle.

A friend pointed out that it’s possible that one of the blasts we transferred could have split while the other didn’t stick.  I hadn’t even thought of this possibility but considering their are two separate sacs and two placentas, I’m guessing that didn’t happen.

How I’m feeling

95% of the time…I’m feeling pawesome (that’s for you RB!).  I don’t know how I escaped the first trimester without morning/all day sickness but I am so lucky that I did!  It’s still lights out by 9:30 but the daily fatigue is pretty much gone.  No aches or pains (yet), no headaches, no heartburn.

Round ligament pain is picking up, but it’s still not terrible.  I’m having major digestive issues (i.e. nothing is happening) and that’s making me bloated and uncomfortable.  My whole ribcage is expanding (including the boobs) and I’m finally going to bite the bullet and buy new bras.  But if that’s all I have to complain about, I’m way ahead of the game.

Gender Predications

Ugh, I just don’t know!  Old wives tales say…heart rates above 140 often indicate girls.  Could my original predication of TWO GIRLS be correct!?!?  Gah!!  I want to start buying bows and glitter and everything pink!!  167 is pretty high.  Just saying….

I’m going with one of each.  Butter Bean is a girl, Lima Bean is a boy.

First baby purchases

I bought these 2 years ago.  10 was Jerry’s high school soccer number.   They look huge in this picture but they are teeny tiny!  I can’t wait to get a squirmy little baby in them.  And we can strap a tutu on one or both if needed!

005

 Food

I ate a real meal this week!  And it was chicken!  I had a craving for chicken cordon bleu so I went for it.  Truth be told, I had a craving for this amazing Parmesan-Dijon cream sauce you slather all over it…but I couldn’t just eat a pot full of sauce (could I??).  So, so good.  I made brown rice and peas and Jerry ate two helpings (poor guy has been so cooperative of my pasta-bender).  I’m back!!

I also made a pan of dark chocolate brownies (from a box…Ghirardelli’s.  They are insane.).  And I ate 2 of them.  The Beans must have a sweet tooth.  Because their Mother certainly does not.

Love:  cheeseburgers, pasta, honey crisp apples, salad with ranch dressing, bagels and cream cheese, grilled cheese, spinach, frozen grapes, ground beef, clementines

Don’t Love:  Meat, HB eggs are off this list again.

My fish oil pill is supposedly “strawberry flavored”.  This is total BS!  I still take it everyday because it’s good for the Beans. But that fishy aftertaste lingers for hours.  Bleh!

Exercise

Just walking.  56,268 steps this week and only 1 day of 30+ active minutes.  Not my finest performance :(.

Sleep

Sleep is mostly good. We’re averaging one night of insomnia.  Not too shabby.

Mood

I’ve been kind of a pill this week.  Not the whole time but I definitely have moments where things just get to me.  None of it’s pregnancy stuff, just everyday stuff.

Most of the time I’m pretty happy though!

High/Low of the week

High… so many!  No more progesterone shots!!  Our ultrasound was amazing.  Telling our friends and family about the twins was amazing.  Knowing we have two healthy Beans cooking was super, duper amazing!

Low…waking up at 1:30 am and not falling back to sleep.  That kinda stinks.

Jerry

Jerry is his usual amazing self.  He puts up with my grouchy mood swings and takes care of business when I go to sleep at 9:00.  He’s a peach.

The Beans

Secret Baby Files – 11 weeks

005  006

From whattoexpect.com

Slightly more than two inches long now and weighing about a third of an ounce, your baby has been pretty busy growing this week. While you can’t tell this baby’s gender by its cover yet, testes are developing if it’s a boy and ovaries if it’s a girl. And by week 11 of pregnancy, baby has distinct human characteristics: hands and feet in front of her body, ears nearly in their final shape, open nasal passages on the tip of her tiny nose, a tongue and palate in the mouth and visible nipples. Her head is currently equal in length to the rest of the body (don’t worry — all fetuses are top-heavy) and hair follicles are forming on the crown (as well as over the rest of the body). What else makes her look human? Those hands and feet have individual fingers and toes (meaning goodbye to those froglike webbed hands and feet). Meanwhile, fingernail and toenail beds begin to develop this week; by next week, the nails themselves will start to grow (so don’t forget to add a baby nail clipper to your to-buy list).

At the same time, your baby’s body is straightening and her torso is lengthening.  Other poses your baby can now assume:  stretches, somersaults and forward rolls.

Bump

There is no sucking this puppy in.  It’s a definite bump.  I’ve caught Jerry randomly laughing after looking at it and when I question him, he replies “There is NO WAY your boss doesn’t know you’re pregnant”.   Hmmmm, I thought I was being pretty slick with my long cardigans and my strategically places scarves.  I’m coming out of the closet this week so it’ll be interesting to see how successful I’ve been.

Doctor’s Appointment

11w0d – we had an appointment for a basic checkup and to try and hear heartbeats with the doppler. My BP 120/82 which is a little high for me, but I was nervous. 

I had a couple of questions for the doctor.  What’s the deal with weight gain and multiples?  In a nutshell, every woman’s different.  They’ll be tracking my weight and the babies growth so we can adjust if necessary.  Don’t stress about eating 3,500 calories a day. Why aren’t I peeing very much (considering I drink over a gallon of water per day)?  The doctor looked at me like I had 2 heads at this one (what pregnant person is going to complain about peeing too little?!?!).  Basically, I have no edema (swelling) so the water is exiting somewhere.  Not a concern.

The doctor mentioned that it might be tough to hear a heartbeat and really hard to hear both (being this early in the pregnancy).  He slid the probe around for about a minute and we heard one very distinct heartbeat.  I gasped and we lost it.  Figures.  We have an appointment at 11w5d for a viability ultrasound (cue 4 days of panic attacks!). 

I got a prescription for prenatal baseline bloodwork (apparently I didn’t have these tests through our RE) and the Maternal MSAFP Quad Screen (for genetic abnormalities).  We also will have a genetic consult to discuss further testing. 

Weight Gain

Per doctor’s office…up 2 lbs.  I’m not weighing myself at home anymore.

How I’m feeling

95% of the time…pretty freaking great!  I am apparently really good a being pregnant (knock on every piece of wood I can find).  I’ve suffered little nausea, my fatigue is practically gone, my skin is clear, life is good!  I’m sure the massive amounts of complaints will come, but for now, I’m just loving every minute of growing these babies. 

I’m not totally symptomless. I have some sinus issues (symptomatic of allergies), my boobs are huge and sore, and my digestive system has returned to the norm (i.e. non productive at a 2-3 day clip) but these are minor inconveniences.  I’m also having more round ligament pain but it’s not too bad.  Just a sharp jab to the gut a few times a day.

Movement

I realize this could be the most asinine statement I’ve ever made, but I think I’m feeling some flutters.  It could be wishful thinking.  You know when you get a weird eye or muscle twitch?  And it just randomly pulses for a second like a little drum beat?  Well I have that feeling from a spot low inside my belly.  It happened one night for about 15 minutes while I was watching Sons of Anarchy (I guess it could’ve been my heart beating all the way in the pit of my stomach…omg that show!!) and I’ve had a few blips here and there.  And no, it’s not gas.  That is one (unmentioned) symptom I am not escaping and definitely know the difference. 

Food

I’ve had pasta for dinner 5 nights this week.  But hey, I’m growing 2 Italian babes…I’m prepping them for life outside the womb!  Jerry and I went to BRGR and oh my goodness…it was unreal!  We had the Pot Roast and Tots (tater tots covered in cheese and pot roast with gravy…what?!?!) and I had the Shrooms burger.  I’ve been dreaming of cheeseburgers and this didn’t disappoint!  I’m guessing BRGR is going to become a pregnancy staple.

I’m still eating often but not a ton at one time.  I find I get full pretty quickly. 

Love:  La Croix Grapefruit, ginger ale, cheeseburgers, pasta, bagels and cream cheese, grilled cheese, spinach, frozen grapes, egg sandwiches, ground beef, clemintines.

Don’t Love:  Meat (unless it’s ground beef), cooked veggies (unless it’s spinach), salad without ranch dressing.

Exercise

Just walking.  Lots of walking. 66,019 steps this week and 5 days of 30+ active minutes.

Sleep

Most nights it’s awesome.  Some of the best sleep I’ve even had!  I’m staying up a little later (usually until 9:30/10) and I think that helps. I wake up feeling well rested and my energy stays pretty high until around 8:00. 

Mood

Jerry and I were measuring for our new living room couch and he suggested a furniture placement that was absolutely ridiculous just wouldn’t work.  And I “snapped at him”.  Actually I flipped out and yelled a bunch.  And he yelled back “Listen to yourself!  I make one suggestion and you completely lose it on me.”  He was completely right and I felt horrible so gave him a chocolate chip cookie as a peace offering. So…I have those moments…. 

I also find I’m pretty sensitive these days.  Example…I’m a bit self conscious about the bump because basically it looks like I’ve eaten way too many of the aforementioned cookies.  So innocent comments like “You’re having pasta for dinner again?? Really?” are taken as “You’re starting to looking like an elephant from eating all of that pasta”.  And I get sad and tear up and feel depressed. It’s totally irrational and silly (because honestly, even if I did look like an elephant, Jerry would never tease me about it)…welcome to pregnancy hormones!

But most of the time I’m pretty happy!   

High/Low of the week

High…Hearing at least one heartbeat, even though it was brief. 

Low…my neighbor’s dog being off leash and charging after Jacob.  And the wife laughing it off. LAUGHING!!!! Granted the dog was all of 10 lbs but my dog is 90.  It is quite possible he could pull me down while I’m trying to prevent him from eating the little ankle biter.  I went home and and had a much needed meltdown.  LOTS of crying and cursing.  That was the second time that’s happened with this dog.  The third strike will be ugly….just sayin.

The Beans

Secret Baby Files – 10 weeks

 008_thumb.png 007_thumb.png

Baby’s Bones Develop
Your baby’s growth is fast and furious when you are 10 weeks pregnant. He or she is nearly an inch and a half long and the size of a prune, but not nearly as shriveled (even with all the time spent in water). In fact, your baby is really taking a human shape now. Bones and cartilage are forming and small indentations on the legs are developing into knees and ankles. The arms (complete with elbows) can flex already (how is that for magical?), but don’t run to the store for a baseball bat just yet. Though your baby’s arms are taking shape and getting stronger, each one is only about the size of this number 1.

Baby’s First Teeth
The tooth bud fairy is making her appearance this week, heralding the arrival of your baby’s little choppers, which are forming under the gums. (Those pearly whites won’t break through the gums until your baby is close to six months old). Other systems are a go, too. Your baby’s stomach is producing digestive juices, the kidneys are producing larger quantities of urine and, if your baby’s a boy, he’s already producing testosterone (how manly!).

Bump

The bump is out loud and proud.  I’m not a big fan of the belly band so I’m jumping right in with maternity pants.  I wore my first pair of jeans this weekend and they are amazing!  Just like pajama jeans!  Why don’t they make all jeans like that??? 

Weight Gain

Day 1 of week 10 I was down 1.5 lbs (total gain +1).  I mentioned this to Jerry who replied “I find it hard to believe you lost a pound and a half”…as he stared at my booty struggling for air in my way-too-tight pants.  (Jerry and I need to have a talk about kid gloves and hormonal pregnant women.)  Day 6 of week 10, I was down another pound which puts me down –0.5 from my starting point. 

I find this shocking, quite frankly.  I’m riding the carbohydrate train…HARD.  And I eat all day long.  I haven’t been eating much meat or veggies and I’m going to make that a priority for this next week (I know I need more protein). And given the size of my belly, I would think I’m up at least 5 lbs.  Add it to the list of things to discuss with my doctor.

Symptoms

Fatigue…I’m rockin out the days with little fatigue.  And I can stay up until around 9:30 most nights!!  I’m so looking forward to the 2nd trimester burst of energy! 

Sleep…it’s been amazing this week.  Despite being sick, I was able to get a full nights sleep every night with minimal trouble.  Asleep by 9:30 up by 5:30.  I’ll take 8 glorious hours of shut eye!  And the crazy movies that play in my head are a bonus.  So many bizarre dreams!!  Super vivid and totally out there.  I think that means I’m having a very deep slumber.

Smell…bad breath, public restrooms, cigarettes, heavy perfume.  Get away from me!!!  But I can smell the cinnamon rolls in our cafeteria from 3 floors away.  Come to mama!

Excess Saliva…I read about this symptom on Pregnant Chicken and my first thought was “Pregnant chicks complain about everything!  Suck it up!”.  And then I choked on my own mouth secretions (I have an issue with the word “spit”) in the middle of a staff meeting and realized it’s an actual thing.  I assumed it would be like drool running out of the corners of my mouth.  Nope.  It’s all of this liquid in the back of your throat.  And you don’t realize it’s there until you try to swallow and then you start choking.  Awesome.  And disgusting.  Awesomely disgusting. 

Food

I started making freezer meals.  Yes, at 10 weeks pregnant I’m stocking up for a long winter.  Who knows if I’ll have to be put on bed rest.  And if not, how much cooking will I really want to do when I’m the size of hippopotamus?  So I’m taking a couple days a week and just doubling my recipes.  Right now I have stuffed shells and chili waiting for us.

005

Love:  La Croix Grapefruit and PASSIONFRUIT!!, Pasta, bagels and cream cheese, beef and bean burritos, grilled cheese, spinach, frozen grapes, egg sandwiches, twizzlers.

Don’t Love:  Meat (unless it’s ground beef), cooked veggies (unless it’s spinach), salad without ranch dressing.

Exercise

Just walking.  Lots of walking. 52,447 steps this week.  Not great but I had 5 days of 30+ active minutes.

Gender Prediction

This week my prediction went from two girls to two boys, based on the old wives tale that girls steal your beauty.  My skin and hair are still reacting fabulously to this pregnancy! 

Mood

I would say good for the most part.  I just feel happy.  I still have moments of “everyone just stop talking” and I get a little grumpy.  My cure for grumpy is silence.  Or a 30 second flip out where I just swear a lot.  Jerry hates this but it’s amazing how a few curse words can change my mood.

High/Low of the week

High…Really feeling pregnant! 

Low…Finding out the next Royal Baby will be born in April.  The beans only want to share the spot light with Baby Banana.

Jerry

Bless his heart, but Jerry is in complete denial about the real estate this baby bump is going to cover.  I love that he thinks I’m going to remain a dainty flower at 9 months pregnant, however, that’s not the goal.  I don’t have intentions of packing on 100 lbs but a good amount of weight gain for Moms of Multiples is 45-55 lbs.  And that makes for one giant belly.  I told him to google 36 week twin baby bump.  He still insists I’ll never look like that!  So sweet…

Quote of the week (in reference to my maternity jeans)…”You’re never wearing regular jeans again, are you?” 

The Beans

Secret Baby Files – 9 Weeks

006 002

Per whattoexpect.com

Would you believe your baby is having his or her first graduation already? Yes, it’s true: At 9 weeks pregnant, your scholar-to-be has ended his or her embryonic stage and is entering the fetal period now (good-bye embryo, hello fetus). Your fetus is now about one inch long, the size of a medium green olive (but no martinis, please). The head has straightened out and is more fully developed, the ears are much more prominent and some new organs (the liver, spleen and gallbladder) are forming. Your fetus is also making spontaneous movements of his or her arms and legs now that minuscule muscles are beginning to develop, though you won’t feel your tiny dancer for at least another two months.

While it’s way too early to feel anything, it’s not too early to hear something (possibly). Your baby’s heart is developed enough — and grown large enough — so that its beats can be heard with a Doppler, a handheld ultrasound device that amplifies the lub-dub sound the heart makes. But don’t worry if your practitioner can’t pick up the sound of your baby’s heartbeat yet. It just means your shy guy or gal is hiding in the corner of your uterus or has his or her back facing out, making it hard for the Doppler to find its target. In a few weeks (or at your next visit) the miraculous sound of your baby’s heartbeat is certain to be audible for your listening pleasure.

*****************************************************************************************

Bump – 9 weeks 3 days

This is a horrible picture taken with my ipad…and the only picture I will probably take bare bellied.  But this is the bump at 9 weeks. It’s getting big! (That black blob on my lower abs is bruising from my Lovenox shots.  It’s pretty bad. According to Jerry, I’m terrible at giving shots.)

 IMG_0110

About 50% of my pants fit.  I’m slowly retiring clothes each week.  My favorite black pants from the Gap bit the dust yesterday.  I wore them unbuttoned with a belly band and it was the worst…they dug into my skin and left huge welts all over my stomach.  Stretchy pants for the win!

Weight Gain

Up 2.5 lbs.  Not the 10 lbs by 10 weeks I was supposed to gain but it’s a start.

Symptoms

Fatigue…same story, feel good until around 2:30ish and then get sleepy.  Lights out by 9:00

Sleep…Good nights are really good.  One night I woke up to pee and fell asleep on the toilet (probably TMI but too bad.  It’s my blog).  Bad nights are pretty bad.  Insomnia is a bugger!  3:30 am is the new witching hour.

Smell…public restrooms are not a pregnant lady’s friend.  And considering I have to use the one at work 390302 times per day, I’m getting good a holding my breath.

Shiny Hair…Lemme just say, these Beans are giving me amazing hair!!  My hair is pretty thick to begin with.  Now it’s growing like a weed!  And it’s super shiny and really healthy. (True story, when I used to work with Rachel B, she would come into my office and ask if she could brush my hair.  While she was brushing, my boss would walk in and just shake his head.  Then she would ask if she could brush his hair (he was bald).  Good grief, I miss you girl. Come home and brush my hair!) 

Pregnancy brain…isn’t it a bit early for this to hit?  I’m a bit of a space cadet at times and I really notice it in my typing.

Heartburn…the only time I would get heartburn pre-pregnancy was if I drank too much water (I’m an odd one).  But whoa nelly, it’s showing up lately!  Typically after I eat acidic foods.  I haven’t had to chow down on any Tums yet but I should probably pick some up just in case.  Chugging water helps for now.

Symptoms I (still) don’t have

Nausea…omg, I’m so afraid to jinx this.  Nada.  Ok, just so I don’t sound like a snotty braggard…I’m a little queasy if I eat too fast, like it might come back up.  But that goes away in about 30 seconds.  I know I have gotten off pretty easy.  Thank you Beans!

Acne…Again, don’t want to jinx it but my skin is glowing.  I am just shocked by this!  Still thanking my Clairsonic and lots of water.

Insatiable hunger…I was kinda looking forward to this :).  I love to eat!  And while I find myself hungry most of the time, it’s not I HAVE TO EAT THIS SECOND kinda hunger.

Excessive Peeing…maybe it’s because I’ve always had a teeny peanut bladder and I’m used to it.  But I don’t pee anymore than I used to.  And (TMI), when I go, it’s minimal output.  Even with my “must finish water before you pee” rule.  I credit it to more blood volume due to the Beans, therefore, the water is being put to good use.  Question for my doctor.

Food

I find I’m hungry a lot but not able to eat a large amount of food at one time.  This is not a bad thing…it forces me to eat many small meals throughout the day which is better for me anyway.  Cooked veggies are unappealing but raw veggies dipped in this are a different story.

005

Have you tried this???  The whole tub has 270 calories, 8 g of fat and 16 g of protein.  It’s fabulous!

Love:  La Croix Grapefruit, Pizza, pasta, grilled cheese, egg sandwiches, chili, Stouffer’s mac & cheese, Cheese stuffed pretzels, Fruit, ice water

Don’t Love:  Meat (unless it’s ground beef), cooked veggies, seafood, hard boiled eggs

Exercise

Just walking.  Lots of walking.

Mood

Happy and grateful most of the time. Not as weepy.  But stupid, ignorant people still send me raging.  My pregnancy patience is non existant.

Gender Predictions

I’ve had a nagging feeling my my bones for the last year that I was going to have twins, and they were going to be girls.   This was way before I was even pregnant.  Now that we’re moving right along, I feel like it’s one of each.  I think Lima bean (A) is a girl and Butter bean (B) is a boy.  We will hopefully know for sure in about 8 weeks.  Gender scan should be around Thanksgiving.

In addition, Jerry and I had a lengthy conversation about names this weekend.  I started the conversation by stating “I am dreading this discussion because I know there will screaming and tears (all mine)”…we’re both pretty stubborn.  I’m happy to report, we’re mostly on the same page!  We have one solid girl name (Jerry is not even entertaining the thought of 2 girls) and 2 favored boy names.  We also have a list of about 10 contenders for each gender so I’m confident there will be little drama finalizing our decisions.  I did have to drop 3 of my favorite boy names (Franklin, Eli and Preston got a firm NO WAY!) but I’m OK with that.

We are still keeping the names a secret until the birth.  I mean business with this one. And no one wants to piss off a hormonal pregnant woman (trust me).

High/Low of the week

High…Telling Jerry’s Grandma and sister about the Beans.  Stephanie already knew we were pregnant, but she didn’t know she was gonna be an Aunt x2!  They were both shocked and thrilled!  Grandma really wants a boy and a girl…”That way you’ll be all done!”.  We had to assure her that regardless of the genders, we’re all done!

Low…catching Jerry’s wicked headcold!  Man, it kinda sucks being sick when you can’t take anything.  My safe medicine cheat sheet indicated I could use my beloved Decongestant Nasal Spray but some further digging said Afrin is a Category C drug and it’s safety is uncertain.  Not worth the risk.  So I shoved a bunch of Vicks Vapo Rub up my nose, took a Tylenol PM and called it a night.  It could be worse.

Jerry

My baby daddy continues to be amazing.  He’s starting to trust that I’m doing everything in my power to take care of these wee ones.  He encourages me to rest.  He helps out around the house.  He doesn’t eat any of my beloved Pizza Hut Pan Pizza (Don’t judge me) and I think I almost have him convinced to give me foot massages (with latex gloves on, of course) when my feet start aching in a few weeks.  These Beans are going to have one fantastic father.