38 Weeks: To Do List

I should have written this post 2 weeks ago, because that’s how long we’ve been ready!!!

See the full to-do list here.

And here are just the final items – all now complete!

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To Do:

Purchase and Install car seat and have it inspected (Done – see this post!)

Nest the crib (Mattress pads and sheets washed and on. Monitor ready.)

Put together stroller (Bugaboo all ready to go with newly purchased car seat adapter)

Put together any gear that requires assembly (All ready to go)

Put all baby things like wipes, toiletries for baby and shampoos in a handy spot (Wheee!)

Finish diaper changing station assembly (Ready for poop!)

Pack a diaper bag (Ready for hospital)

Buy/figure out diaper container to put wet bag in (Here and hung)

Freeze some meals (Tomato sauce canned and freezer stocked with tons of quick meal items)

Create contact list for baby’s arrival (Done – have a Gmail group for updates and arrival emails)

Buy gift for doula (Ready)

Go on a date (Check + Check!)

Pack hospital bag (All set!)

Schedule newborn photographer (New to the list, but done!)

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PREVIOUS 38 week posts

Snapshots

A Father’s Reflections On Pregnancy

Props For Mom

Out With The Old, In With The New

Pre-Mom Bucket List

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38 Weeks: Pre-Mom Bucket List

He could come any day….. and I’ve been chipping away at a bucket list! It’s not that I won’t be able to do these things after he’s here, but I don’t know if I’ll ever be this relaxed doing them – or how long it will take for our family to get into some kind of normal.

Read Books

Loved On The Island and enjoyed  The Hand That First Held Mine. Breastfeeding Made Simple was not a simple read AT ALL, but I enjoyed it and learned a lot about what to expect.

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Lounge Days [And Naps]

Had a few of those! A day of nothing!

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Romantic Date Nights

Check + Check + Check!

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Get Pedicure

And lots of girl talk!

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Attend Parties

Done and done!

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and perhaps most important….

Be Spontaneous!!

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PREVIOUS 38 week posts

Snapshots

A Father’s Reflections On Pregnancy

Props For Mom

Out With The Old, In With The New

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38 Weeks: Out With The Old, In With The New

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Wheeee!! Getting so close. I’m 38 weeks, 5 days 6 days (edited!) today hard to believe 39 is almost here and 40 around the corner.

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I’m still under the impression that pregnancy gets better and better every day. While I’m definitely thinking about going into labor much of the time, I’m also very happy right where I am and am still content being pregnant. Although if you told me I have a month left (which is technically possible…well 3.5 weeks…if they did let me go to 42 weeks…which I’m not sure of 100% that they would….) I am not sure how happy I’d be or how much more I’d grow! My weight gain seems to have plateaued a bit (at +21 lbs at the doctor, +23-24ish from the start), but I’m sure the baby would get a little more plump in there and that would show from the outside.

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Symptoms that are GONE

Rib pain – Well, not entirely. This came back on Sunday night a bit – I think the baby crawled back up and put his leg back under my ribs! BUT for the rest of the week, it’s been IMMENSELY better.

Back pain – My back feels SOLID again! Amazing!

Symptoms that are NEW

Swelling – just a tiny bit – in my hands and feet. Still wearing my wedding rings, but they are tighter at times. And my toes look rather pudgy, although I doubt the average person would think they looked any different.

Sweaty palms – I read in one of my pregnancy apps that sweat is a sign of hormones/adrenaline. But this is so bad at times I can’t use my phone or tablet!! My fingers just slide around damp on the screen. SO weird!!

Achy jaw + thumb/forefinger palm – Now this is an interesting one. My lower jaw has been feeling really tired/achy. It could be stress/nerves/adrenaline, as I’ve experienced this in the past with stress, HOWEVER, I’ve read that the jaw is linked to the cervix and that the spot between your thumb and forefinger is an acupressure point linked to the uterus, so that makes me wonder if maybe these spots are tense because my cervix is changing and my uterus is contracting just a bit to prepare for labor?! I had my massage therapist work on my jaw two weeks ago and it felt a MILLION times better for a whole week after, and I have had Matt massage my thumbs a little too.

Carpel Tunnel – I’m not sure if I officially have carpel tunnel, but I’ve had trouble with my right wrist in general from computer mouse overuse and the pain is back with a vengeance. Makes me wonder if it’s related to the hand swelling and/or the thumb/palm ache. Probably so. It’s hard to do push ups flat on my hands (like I am doing so many pushups right now Winking smile ) or down dog in yoga.

Insomnia – It’s baaaaaaack. And so annoying. I woke up at 3-4am 3 (and counting) times this week and was up for 2-3 hours each time. Luckily I do eventually fall back asleep to catch a few more winks before I get up for the day. Night #2 a mug of cereal seemed to do the trick to put me back to sleep but it did not work on night #3. I was totally wired and excited thinking about going into labor! Too bad wishful thinking didn’t work : )

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No real signs of labor, although every single twinge I think “could this be it starting!?” I’ve been having a good amount of lower belly ache/cramping. Kind of like the mild period cramps that I used to experience. And a few Braxton Hicks, although mostly at night. I really am not sure how often I’m having these because I feel like my uterus gets soft and firm on and off all day long, but I can’t really tell if it’s just the baby pressing out or a real Braxton Hicks. I’ve only had a handful of REALLY hard contractions that I know are BH – but they don’t hurt at all – just weird – so I know it’s not labor.

At the doctor’s this week I was still 1 cm, –2 station, but now am ~20% effaced (quote “just a little”). Still, that’s progress! I’m still well aware that these stats don’t really mean anything – although I sure wish he would engage! I’m going to work on doing more exercise ball hip loops this week, as my yoga teacher/doula says they are a great exercise to encourage good positioning for engagement in the pelvis.

Lastly, I probably shouldn’t be wearing black shirts in these photos because I hardly look pregnant from the front! Not much to see : ) Also, I am so tired of my 4 pairs of maternity shorts!

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PREVIOUS 38 week posts

Snapshots

A Father’s Reflections On Pregnancy

Props For Mom

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38 Weeks: Props For Mom

We tend to put so much focus on baby stuff, that often a stocked house of things to help mom are forgotten until they are needed.

Based on recommendations from friends and some of you, I’ve stocked up on the following:

Big overnight pads + stool softener. You just never know…

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Washable breast pads

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Two kinds – an organic kind from Babies R Us and Medela brand

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Gel pads – you can freeze them for comfort

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Nipple cream that I’ve seen a few bloggers recommend (and lanolin too)

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A blog reader sent me these sitz bath tea bags ages ago and I tucked them away…until now!

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That throw-away stash of underwear…

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Gina also sent me some fenugreek [Fenugreek seeds are thought to increase milk supply]

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I’ve been sipping raspberry leaf tea since 37 weeks started.*

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I like it better iced than hot (although I do like it hot but iced is easier to sip between meals in the summertime). I put 4 teabags in 4 cups of boiling water and steep for 15 minutes. Then store in the fridge in a pitcher and sip 1 cup a day.

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I might increase the cups per day as 39 weeks gets closer. I’m trying to be conservative introducing the tea. The tea is thought to tone the uterus and prepare it for efficient contractions – it is not supposed to induce labor.

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I also started taking evening primrose after 37 weeks by mouth. A conservative one gel per day. I might try it the other way when I reach 39 weeks. Caitlin wrote posts on both raspberry leaf and EPO on her Babble blog for more info and sources. EPO also won’t induce labor – it is thought to help soften the cervix so when labor does start, it dilates and effaces easier. My only goal by taking these is to hopefully make labor go more smoothly.

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I also read in Fit Pregnancy this summer that dates have a compound similar to oxytocin that meant women were less likely to need medication to start labor or keep it going. Who cares if this is just a wives tale – I like dates! So I’ve been eating them more.

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One thing I have changed my tune about: castor oil. I used to think I might try it on my due date, but the more I’ve read about birth, the more I consider it an intervention. Baby might not be totally ready to come out yet and I don’t want to jump start things (unlike those things above, castor oil CAN induce labor with the cramps it causes the intestines). So unless I have an induction with pitocin scheduled for the morning, I don’t think I’m going to mess with castor oil.

*Talk to your doctor or midwife before doing any of these things!!

PREVIOUS 38 week posts

Snapshots

A Father’s Reflections On Pregnancy

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38 Weeks: A Father’s Reflections On Pregnancy

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What aspects of your pregnancy have been the most exciting?

I’ve enjoyed learning all about the biology of what’s going on in the womb – it’s so strange to me that women’s bodies can essentially enter this other phase where they work differently from all other times in their lives. And it’s all hormone and enzyme controlled! Unreal.

What has been your biggest surprise about pregnancy? Is it what you expected it would be like?

I feel like society treats pregnant women as fragile, delicate people, and when you think of someone who is pregnant, you pretty much imagine someone who is 2 weeks away from delivery. In reality, life hasn’t been that different for most of it. We’ve gone hiking, cooked great food, gone to parties – all the same stuff. I’m especially impressed with her activity level to the very end – frequent walking, yoga classes, and trips to the gym. I think the classic image of pregnancy is someone on the couch eating ice cream all the time, and it hasn’t even been close to that.

What about the most difficult to deal with?

I feel like I shouldn’t complain about anything because my problems are minimal compared to hers, but really the only thing that’s been slightly harder for me is not getting as much sleep. And that’s only because she’s getting even less sleep and rolling around a lot.

I guess I’m also a little tired of the perpetual question from other people: “Are you excited?” It’s been 8 months and I still can’t think of a funny enough response! I realize that they’re really just opening up the conversation, but man this question is about as useless as talking about the weather. But to actually answer the question, yes, I’m very excited!!

Are you nervous about labor and delivery?

I’ve mentally moved beyond the delivery – after all the reading and preparing Kath has done, I’m confident she’ll do great. So now my mind has drifted to the future and raising kids. I found this hilarious blog that I’ve been reading: Crappy Pictures. It makes me look forward to all the learning adventures ahead!

What stereotype of pregnancy most suits Kath? (Pickle cravings, waddling, crying all the time?)

I’m disappointed I don’t have a better answer to this question! Besides being sick in the first trimester, and general (and increasing) discomfort, there haven’t been any specific stories about stereotypical “pregnancy stuff.” Nope, still the grossest food consumption in the house belongs to me: putting mayo on potatoes, sipping the water in the tuna can, drinking pickle juice, and messily eating with my hands.

What part of having a baby are you most excited about? Nervous about?

I’m surprised by how much I enjoyed picking out some baby clothes – I’ve always been so annoyed that kids clothing is expensive, elaborate, and not at all appreciated by the wearer. But a baby in a polo shirt? Hilarious!

I’m most nervous about how our schedules will change. I can’t just abandon the bakery, but I also feel guilty with the thought of leaving home to go to work! But I guess being a business owner is a lot easier situation to deal with than a classic 9-5 job. I think the first week or two will be the most stressful, but just like we settled into a normal life with the bakery, we’ll figure out parenthood as well. It’s actually pretty easy to find parallels between business ownership and parenthood – I can’t tell you how many times at the bakery I’ve felt like I will never get all this work done, or I’ll never find a new person to hire, or we’ll never be able to integrate this new thing into the business. But with enough repetition, any job becomes easier over time and you figure out little efficiencies or tricks, or you just get better. I’m sure we’ll figure it out just like everybody else in time.

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38 Weeks: Snapshots

Chillin’ in the downstairs fridge, ready for D-Day

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Before + After :mrgreen:

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Hard to believe it’s almost been 9 months since this beer last got attention!*

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*I feel the need to note that I’m not planning to booze it up as soon as the baby comes out! I’m sure that will be the last thing on my mind. Just saying that it will be fun to drink this ceremoniously at some point after he’s born since it was how I told Matt I was pregnant – in lieu of a champagne toast!

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