Friday, March 30, 2012

Mini Baby-moon

This week Tidy and I had originally planned to go somewhere warm for 5 days or so to lounge in the sun one last time, sans babies. But after looking at prices and realizing that we had more to do at our house than we expected, well... sunshine, pools and naps were off the table.

But we did instead go for a quick overnight to a spa near by. We arrived early on Tuesday and both got a massage and enjoyed the hot tub and plunge pools. Tidy sat in the sauna and I put my feet in the hot tub. It was very relaxing and a good way to just tune out for a bit. We had intended to go out to a nice dinner as well, but Tidy's stomach wasn't feeling well, so instead, we ordered room service, sat in bed and watch cable tv (which we don't have at home... I'm "frugal" :-) ). I think we watched about 3 hours of "Deadliest Catch" from the Discovery Channel. I was hooked! And to top the evening off, I went down to the ice cream shop and ordered an chocolate gelato, brought it back to the room and blissfully sat in bed, savoring the yummy goodness.

Hey, if I can't indulge in wine, I guess gelato will have to do, right?

The next day, we woke up late, I went to a yoga class at the spa and Tidy sat outside, soaking in the cool spring sun (not the same as, say, FL sun, but it was better than nothing).

It really was a very nice and relaxing 24 hours, away from the chaos that is our house right now (due to my purging, and baby room nesting...).

So now it's back to reality and I can see my 30 week goal of getting most things done quickly creeping up on me. I'd better start making more lists.

In medical news, 2 very exciting things: 1) I passed my 1 hr glucose test that I took yesterday. YAY!! and 2) The marginal placenta previa that they had seen in the past ultrasounds seem to be gone! Phew... So, on we go, marching towards the third trimester with all things going well, so far. Just keeping my fingers crossed every day that they continue this way.


And now, the stats and a bump pic:

Status: 27w1d

Weight Gain: Will weigh in again in early April.

Symptoms:  Itchy itchy itchy! All right up on the top of my belly, near my solar plexus area. 

Cravings: None to speak of

Aversions: None to speak of

Exercise:  Monday: 45 min prenatal yoga, Wednesday am: 1 hr power flow yoga at the spa, Wednesday pm: 1hr prenatal yoga, Thursday: 30 min walk with the dog.

Best Moment of the Week: Mini-baby-moon with Tidy. Simply being together with him makes me happy. We live such busy lives that when we take time to just shut the world out and be together, it always reaffirms to me how strong our bond is. He also is enjoying my laughter lately. For some reason, pregnancy has helped me re-find my laughter and it feels sooo good.

What I Look Forward to: More work done on the nursery this weekend! Here's a sneak peak at the color and the studio couch we will use for nursing and a spare bed in case either of us want to sleep in there. Next steps: Nail in the base boards, have new windows installed, change out electrical outlets to GCI and install the new overhead light. More pics to come...

Saturday, March 24, 2012

Choosing Joy

I don't think that I have mentioned infertility much on this blog lately. It's still here, in my mind, from time to time. And I know that it will always be a part of me. It lingers here and there when I catch myself feeling negative, or worried, or just "realistic" that I don't actually YET have these babies in my hands... and until then, there's no guarantee. Even then, there's no guarantee.

But I don't want to go through this pregnancy with those thoughts in my head. I don't think this is being naive, or ignorant, or "throwing caution to the wind". I think this is just a choice one makes, to put the fear away and find some peace in the present.

So instead I choose to go through it with joy and gratefulness, because if I didn't, I think I might regret it.

And today was one of those days where I chose joy. We painted the nursery and it looks fantastic! (Click here for before)

(Next steps: New windows, treatments, furniture and decorations.... not all in one weekend :-) ) 

The color is just how I wanted it. Seeing this room, finally painted, after almost 5 years of sitting empty and unused, makes this all the more real. I got weepy as I was listening to some music, putting the finishing coat on the room. I could feel my babies bouncing around in my belly and for a spilt second or two, I could envision them there with me, snuggling in tight.

I choose joy. I choose to believe that this is going to happen. Because if I don't, I let the fear win.

Friday, March 23, 2012

Another Sneak Peek

Another peek inside revealed two perfectly growing babies. They are both measuring very close together, which is what we are aiming for right now. One is at 2lbs, 2 oz and the other at 2 lbs, 4oz (I can't remember which is which). But that puts them both in the 46th percentile for their weight and gestational age... just perfect, in my opinion!

Here are the latest, greatest ultrasound pictures, although I should say that they are a bit harder to make out than last month. I think that as the room gets tighter, there are more things in the way, for example their siblings foot, or butt. And they were squirming around so much in there that it was hard to get a good still picture.

Here is Twin A with his/her left fist up near the left eye. It's somewhere between a profile and a full frontal face view. Also in this picture is Twin B's shin... but that's harder to distinguish from all of the other stuff going on in there.

Here is Twin B's profile. This little one was very hard to capture since most of the time it was laying with it's back to us. But we did get a pretty good shot of his/her right profile. I think there's a fist in there too.

As they moved around in there, you could see them sucking in the amniotic fluid and nudging each other, maybe saying hello, or jockeying for more space. I just hope that they are becoming friends in there and not getting frustrated as the space gets smaller.


And now, the stats:

Status: 26w1d

Weight Gain: Will weigh in again in early April.

Symptoms:  Nothing really different from last week, although I am a bit itchy. I heard that as your belly stretches, it becomes itchy and for some reason, I expected this to be more lower on my belly, but the itch seems mostly to happen up at the top, near where I imagine my diaphragm to be. I found this great little product made locally that seems to help with the itch. 

Cravings: None to speak of

Aversions: None to speak of

Exercise:  With a busy weekend traveling and "showering", I was back to only 2 days this week. I did spend a good 2 hours in heels on Saturday walking around at my shower, can I count that? Monday 45 min pre-natal yoga in a new studio! (WAY better than my current series. I'll try to post about that one in the near future).  Wednesday: 1 hr prenatal yoga. I'm on spring break this coming week, so I'm going to aim back to that 4 day a week!

Best Moment of the Week: My beautiful shower, which I wrote about in the last post. And then second to that was our ultrasound yesterday. It brings tears to my eyes to see those little dudes

What I Look Forward to: Getting the nursery painted this week. Tidy has spring break this coming week so I took the week off as well. I will still have to do some emailing to keep up on, but I can spend the majority of the week getting some projects finished at the house. Also, Tidy and I are going to take a night getaway at a spa near by for a little R&R. My back is in definite need of another massage!!

Tuesday, March 20, 2012


This past weekend, I was spoiled by my and Tidy's immediate and extended family. We had our first baby shower... and it was just as I had hoped it would be.

We gathered in a private room at a restaurant in the town where both of our parents live on a Saturday afternoon. The weather was unseasonably warm, nearing 80. Just before noon, my sisters, mom and I arrived to put the favors, decorated cookies mimicking an illustration from the invitations, onto the tables. The prior day, my mother in law had dropped off the beautiful centerpieces she put together. 

It was picture perfect.

Around noon, the guests started to arrive... many of our close relatives, a few dear friends from high school and the infertility community. We ate fantastic food (and to-die-for carrot cake cupcakes for dessert) and opened gifts. Tidy showed up to help open a few, specifically some bought just for him: a diaper bag just for "dad" and a pair of onzies  and socks from our college alma mater (best non-registry gift of the day!).

It lasted for a few hours and for the most part, I was able to talk to every one of the 25 or so guests there and genuinely thank them for coming and for their generosity. I felt spoiled. Tidy also bounced around to say thank you. He HATES these kinds of social engagements, especially having to walk into a room full of 25 women... but he did great thanking everyone individually. Little does he like to admit, but I believe him to be VERY charming ;-)

After gifts and a few other conversations, the guests started to leave, we packed up my dad and MIL's SUVs with the gifts (yes, we needed 2 large trunks) and made our way back to my parents house.

I think back to it, just a few days ago, and it already seems like a dream, like it never even happen. But I have pictures to prove it did.

Experiences like this, that we have waited so long to experience as we struggle to get pregnant, go by in the blink of an eye. If we don't revel in them, in that moment, and be grateful for how it unfolds, we might regret not absorbing every moment of things that others possibly take for granted.

I'm so grateful to my mom, sisters and Tidy's mom for working so hard to make this a day that I have dreamed of. I hope they know how very much they made a part of my dream come true.

Thursday, March 15, 2012


I had a great appointment almost a week ago with my OB and it makes me feel so very reassured that we made the right choice to go with him.

About a month ago, I went into him and cried... a lot. I cried for all of the fear that was over taking my body and mind.

I have been on a chat board for a few years with some amazing women. They all struggled with infertility as well and a few of them suffered twin losses... My heart aches for their losses and the fact that they had to experience that, I am glad their stories have happy endings.  And while I know that they meant well with the advice that they were giving me, it made me fear this pregnancy more than enjoy and revel in it. It made me second guess myself and my body... Because I got caught up in that fear, when I went into my OB around 20 weeks, I sobbed to him that I didn't want to lose these babies and I wanted him to do everything that I could to make sure they were ok.

He did a great job at helping to calm my fears, share his thoughts on monitoring, how things have been going for us and how he wants to proceed. Mostly he gave me a calm look and said, "Please trust me. I am going to get you through this the best way I know possible." He also suggested that I stop "googling" and possibly lessen my exposure to the fear.

And I did. I told my friends on the board that for now, I just needed to isolate myself a bit and regain some of my own sense of confidence. I hope that they know how much I adore them and miss my interactions with them there, but I also hoped that they understand.

So last week when I went in OB, the first thing he did when he came in the room was to sit down and look at me in the eye and say, "So how are are you feeling, emotionally. Are you doing better? Or are you still feeing worried?"

I was so impressed that he remembered (or at least took the time to look in his charts and review my case before he came into the room... LOL) and that he really seemed to care. We talked a lot about how things have been going and that all signs still point to things going well. My babies are growing very close to each other in size and that size is in the right range for their gestation. My cervix is still holding very nice and long and closed.. (I can't remember the exact measurement, but it was around 4cm).

After that reassurance, we started to discuss birthing options. I told him that my initial impression was that he wanted to push me towards a scheduled C-section. He clarified that this wasn't his intention and he was sorry that I got that impression. He said that almost 50% of twin births end in C-sections, so moreso than anything, he wanted to get me prepared for that option. But, depending on the position of the babies he is definitely open to a vaginal birth. He's even willing to do so if Baby A is head down, but Baby B is breech. We decided to put the conversation on hold a bit more until next time when I bring Tidy with me and we can talk about a birth plan. One of the reasons I think I want to have a birth plan is that unless I schedule an induction with him, I may not end up having him help us birth these babies... (oh, I LOVE the modern health care / insurance industry for this. Ugh...). In any event, I'm really excited to start discussing the birth part of this whole thing in more detail and share them with you and ask for feedback. More to follow in the coming weeks...

As I type this, I am still blinking at the page thinking,"Am I really talking about birth here??? ME???? Birth???? Babies???? "

It's SO surreal.


And now, the stats and a belly pic:

Status: 25w0d

Weight Gain: Will weigh in again in early April.

Symptoms:  Daily movements and more back pain. I think I might start trying out my "belly bra"... maybe that will help. I feel way better when I'm active and moving around. When I sit in my desk or meetings all day long, it starts to get somewhat tight. Baby B is also nudged up against my diaphragm for the past few it seems, and maybe that won't go away, but I'm hoping he/she shifts a bit. 

Cravings: None to speak of

Aversions: None to speak of

Exercise:  Another 4 day week! Yay!. Sunday 60min spinning, Monday 45 min pre-natal yoga in a new studio! (WAY better than my current series. I'll try to post about that one in the near future).  Wednesday: 1 hr prenatal yoga. Thursday (today): 45 min walk with the dog and the hubby in this amazing weather we are having. I think spring has come VERY early.

Best Moment of the Week: Tidy has finally gotten to feel some real movements. On Sunday, when I was sanding near him, he put his hand on my belly and felt one of the babies moving. He then started to repeat some funny things to them, particularly his Chicago White Sox Baseball Announcer "schtick" to them and they were going NUTS!! It was such a neat moment for Tidy to feel like they were reacting to him. I love it.

What I Look Forward to: Still looking forward to my first baby shower... 2 days!

Monday, March 12, 2012


We've been waiting for a few months for Tidy's school board to make a decision on his application for a year sabbatical... and tonight we finally have an answer.

They said yes!!!!!

This means that Tidy will be granted a year away from his school for the 2012-2013 school year to be a Stay At Home Dog And Baby Dad... We are so grateful for him to have this opportunity. Can we get another YAY!!!

This sabbatical will allow him to take this year off of teaching (with no pay of course) and then return for the 2013-2014 with his same position, tenure and place in the pay scale (assuming he wants to... but those will be decisions we make later down the road).

When we looked at the cost of infant day care for TWO babies versus Tidy's take home teacher salary, it clearly made monitory sense for him to not work. Additionally, depending on the day care we chose, we could actually have been paying more money for him to work...

But quitting his job and staying at home wasn't a 100% slam dunk for Tidy and his career. As many of you teachers out there know, leaving a school district after gaining tenure is a hard thing to do, especially in this market. The thought of quitting his job, even if it was to stay home with our babies that we have been trying for for almost 5 years, still left him a bit conflicted. And I get that, I really do. He loves teaching and he loves his students. He's a fantastic mentor to those middle-schoolers (even though I've never actually seen him in action.. ha!) and they are going to be sad to not have him there for a year.

Additionally, in being a SAHD, he will be giving up his financial independence, not to mention the loss of independence in simply becoming parents.

Now, please oh please don't get us wrong. We are SOO grateful to even be in a position to consider having one of us stay at home. And we are SOO grateful to be parents-to-be. But as with any major life change, there is always some anxiety as to how this change will feel, and will I be able to adapt well, and will I be able to handle the change in the best way and not go completely crazy!!!

Thus, the sabbatical really became more about Tidy having a fall back plan and retain that ability to go back to work in an 'easy' way in case SAHDABD-ing was just not the right decision for him, me, our babies and our sanity.

So I say with great gratitude, THANK YOU school board, for making this decision and for giving Tidy the peace of mind to go into almost a year and a half of being a stay at home dad with a little more confidence and peace of mind.

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Checking Things Off

Checking things off the to-do list is helping me sleep better I think. For the last week, I have been waking up at 3 or 4 in the morning with a busy head, not being able to fall back to dream land. It sucks, because it makes me so tired during the day. This actually seems to happen to me as the seasons change, especially as winter turns into spring. It reminds me that I need to go back to my acupuncturist for a balancing session...

But, back to the checking off. This weekend we've been very productive:

  • We bought a studio couch for the nursery. I've been doing a lot of research on what type of seating to get for nursing the babies. Although a rocker or glider sounds nice, we've decided to go with a larger 2-seater couch so that I can have enough room to tandem feed the twins. It also converts to a bed by putting the arms down, in case I need to just fall asleep in there. Next step: Find someone who can make baby friendly (read poop, pee and spit up friendly) covers for the cushions.
  • We bough the B.O.B duallie stroller, in navy, WITH the cup holder attachment, thanks to my very generous dad. THANKS DAD!!! 
  • We bought new electrical outlets that are white, because the current cream ones in there won't match, but MORE importantly, they are GCI outlets so there's a bit more protection in there.
  • We also went to buy the paint for the room, (and, by the way, it was the bottom middle one), but they were out of the base required to make the color, so our plans of painting the nursery this weekend were foiled... Drat! But I took a whole week off during Tidy's spring break (the last week in March) so we can finish up much of the painting and planning.
  • We also decided on a bassinet/crib/toddler bed system... now, the trick is to find out where the best place is to buy them to save the most $$ on shipping, since I can't seem to find a store that stocks them. I'll post pics as soon as we have those up.
  • I found a beautiful piece of yellow fabric to turn into a wall hanging to brighten up our "cheery" grey walls
  • AND I bought this sweet print from Etsy. My friend Mags pointed it out to me and it's PERFECT because 1) It goes well with the light I want to put up, 2) Its is in the same colors of our nursery AND 3) The song is very sentimental to me, since I recall this being one of our family songs sung a lot to us as babies. 

So, you see? Lots of checks on the list of to-dos, makes me feel VERY happy and accomplished. It's starting to come together. AND I'm sleeping better. 

Next up? Our first baby shower is this coming Saturday. EEEEK! I'm going to a baby shower!! And it's for ME!!!! (Well, I guess Tidy too .... ;-) ).  

And now, the stats: 
Status: 24w3d

Weight Gain: My guess of 23 lbs was a little low. I weighed in at the OB on Friday (24w1d) at 26 lbs up. Feeling a bit "fat" but loving these curves. I think my bum is getting a bit bigger, but overall, most of it is in my belly. (I think)

Symptoms: I'm absolutely loving the daily movements. That's really the only symptom I have right now. Some days I am more hungry than others, but mostly I feel pretty normal. I still have some gallbladder pain here and there, but definitely manageable with diet modifications. I had an amazing massage last week from a massage therapy student learning to do prenatal massage, so it was FREE! (Anywhere we can save $$ right now feels so good) and so the back is feeling great. 

Cravings: None to speak of

Aversions: None to speak of

Exercise: I finally made my 4 day goal!! It took me long enough... Saturday: 3.5 mile elliptical, Sunday 60min spinning, Tuesday: 45 min power flow yoga. Wednesday: 1 hr prenatal yoga. I also went to go find a swim suit for working out in, but I can't seem to rationalize buying a new one for $60 or so just to fit me for 3 more months. We'll see. I haven't seen a pregnancy speedo out there, but haven't done too much research. The larger sizes that fit my belly are too long and don't cover my boobs... such a quandary.

Best Moment of the Week: My OB appointment this past Friday. I'll write another post on that shortly. Basically, it gave me the hope that I could have a birth closer to one that I've wanted, rather than assuming I need to move directly to a c-section. I don't think there's anything wrong with wanting to have a c-section, but for me, I'd like to have a vaginal birth if possible.... Oh, and #2 on the list of best moments this week, was my shopping trip with Tidy yesterday. I think things are starting to feel a bit more real for him too.

What I Look Forward to: My first baby shower on Saturday with my family.

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Dear Babies

I am starting to feel you move around and nudge me daily, now.  It feels like my tummy is a soft leather drum and you are gently tapping at it from the inside. While I'm doubt you are consciously trying to tell me things, these movements are so reassuring and feel like you are communicating, saying things like, "Yum! Thank you for that awesome chocolate", or "Can you please give me a bit more of space?"

I feel so lucky to have you both inside me, caring for you, keeping you safe and warm and fed and healthy and giving you the things you need to get strong and ready for your entry into this new world. It's going to be here before we all know it...

Please keep moving around in there. It makes me smile... in a way I've never smiled before.

Sunday, March 4, 2012

Nursery - Before

We bought our house in 2007. The room that will soon become the twin's nursery has remained empty since then. It had become a sad reminder in some sense of the fact that we had struggled to add to our small family of Tippy, Tidy & the Pog. For the most part, the door remained closed and we stored extra stuff in the room that we didn't know what to do with. Sometimes it also functioned as my ironing room...

So, today, 22 weeks and 3 days pregnant with our beautiful twins, we finally cleared out the room and started making some headway on next steps.

Here's a few pictures of the room as it stood this morning, "Before" (well, I should say, AFTER, we cleared out the closet at least)

This is the view of the room when you enter into it from the hallway. It's a nice corner room so it gets east and southern exposure... lots of great sun. But notice a few things... 1) Junk in the corners 2) Baseboards not in their proper place and 3) Pink blinds... Pink (And I think the sellers painted the walls quickly to cover a pale blue.... Yikes. (By the way, I have a VERY neutral and natural style. I like colors inspired by nature and that run in the grey, tan, green, blue and yellow families, with a heavy emphasis on the grey and tan). So the pink blinds and blue hue that had come through the slopped on paint definitely needed to go.

Around the corner to the right of the door is a closet. Not too bad, but the doors need a fresh coat of paint (That looks fun, with all those slats, huh?) and I plan to find some decorative door handles.

There is also a nook to the right of the closet that had adjustable shelves both inside and out. You can see a picture of the inside of the closet here with the adjustable shelves still up in the closet. They came down today. We are going to have someone build permanent shelves in the nook on the outside of the closet for books and containers and such.

Above the closet used to be a light fixture, that has been down for oh, about 4 years... So this needs to come out and a new light fixture will be put in. I have one in mind that I found at IKEA. I can't wait to see how it will look with our colors.

And finally, this is the lovely beat to shit door that currently is how you enter the room, from the hallway. This will be replaced too, to match some of the other doors we've replaced in the house. I  know the people who lived in this house before had 3 kids and a dog, but I feel like from the looks of the woodwork in the house, either their dog scratched everything, or they locked their kids in their rooms and they tried to scratch their way out. (No, that's not a funny thing to joke about.. I know... But seriously, how does one house get so much wear and tear. And yes, I'm sure I will find that out)

So, today, we cleared the room out,  painted the closet a fresh coat of flat white and put up some paint chips to decide on.

Which one do you like? Which one do you think we picked? Tidy and I agreed right away, which is very unlike us when it comes to house decorations. The nursery will have one of these shades of grey for walls, dark and white furniture and some yellow and black and white accents, wall hangings and art.

I still want to maintain some sense of cohesive style in the nursery that fits with our mid-century modern  house. Just because we are having babies, doesn't mean I have to lose my style, right? I can't wait to see how this all comes together! More pictures to come.

And I must say that it feels SOO good to be clearing that room out to make room for these babies. I think the room is going to be happy too. It's been waiting a long time to be used in a better way.

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Lights at the End of the Tunnel

At 23 weeks, I can see the light at the end of the tunnel, but I still have a long way to go and much to do. Here's my ever growing list... so far:

  • Paint
  • Crib(s)
  • Love seat or chair and a half for nursing
  • Dresser
  • Art
  • Closet organizers
Other Items
  • Buy stroller (My dad is buying us this awesome BOB Duallie!!! Thanks pops! The babies, Tidy and I thank you. It will be a great motivator to get us back out running and hiking and walking...)
  • De-clutter more closets
  • Read books on feeding, sleeping, raising babies... cuz, ya know, we've never done this before!!
  • Get car seats in the car and have them safety tested
With all of these things to do, I find myself caught up in a tizzy of planning and "nesting" as some of you might call it. But as I see the light at the end of the tunnel, I start to feel nostalgic for my early pregnancy... for the nights when I would wake up at 3am needing toast and pumpkin butter, for the early ultrasounds that were my only confirmation that something was growing in there, for the first time we told people we were having twins (oh the look on some people faces! precious). 

I think what I'm feeling is an ever gratefulness for this opportunity. At this stage, I can truly say that I absolutely love being pregnant. I know that everyone experiences this differently. But these last 5 months have been magical. I thank my body for doing what I knew it could do all along... being good at being pregnant. Great in fact!

Yes, I do know that I still have a long way to go and with twins, I'm at higher risk for things like gestational diabetes, pre-eclampsia, and the comfort level is going to decline rapidly at some point,... but as of now, I can not complain. I love my belly and I've even embraced the extra curves I've found in areas NOT in my belly.

My point here is that I want to savor these last 3 to 4 months... I want to not take for granted that I am the sole provider of safety and comfort for these little babies and I carry them with me at all times. I want to walk through this in a graceful way, and not regret my actions or mindset as we get ready to welcome them into a new world.  

I also think that I may want to do this pregnancy thing again... but shhh.... don't tell Tidy ;-)

And now, the stats and a belly pic:

Status: 23w2d

Weight Gain: I won't weigh in again until this coming Friday. My guess is 23 lbs.

Symptoms: Daily movements are there and getting a bit stronger. Back aches are definitely present, but with being able to go back to the gym a bit, that seems to have helped. And a pregnancy massage is coming up on Wednesday.. yay!

Cravings: None to speak of

Aversions: Again, none to speak of

Exercise: Sunday: 3 miles elliptical. Tuesday: 45 min power flow yoga. Wednesday: 1 hr prenatal yoga.  I didn't get my goal of getting back into the pool yet... but on my list of things to do today is BUY A FRIGGIN SWIM SUIT!!

Best Moment of the Week: Looking over at Tidy one night while we were sitting on the couch at the end of a busy day and saying to him how grateful I am we chose the path of donor eggs. If we hadn't, I would not have had the chance to experience pregnancy. This is truly a gift and one that I hope never to take for granted.

What I Look Forward to: We had the nursery room worked on last week to repair a wall that had some rotting floor boards in it. With that and the re-insulation in the attic, the room is becoming more and more baby friendly!! I can't wait to get some paint up there!!