Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Baby Shelley: 22-23 Weeks

22-23 Weeks

Weight gain: 7 lbs

Maternity clothes: Leggings all the time please.

Sleep: Sleep has been pretty great due to the rashes healing and my new Bump Nest pillow!

Medication: 1-2 Zofran pills a day depending on how I'm feeling. I've had some not so good days but nothing compared to the beginning. The rashes are healed and we figured out it was an allergic reaction to a band-aid. So NO more band-aids for me at least during pregnancy! So strange.

Gender: BOY! (Gender reveal party post coming as soon as I get the video working on here.) We are praying about the name. I have no idea whether we'll share it before birth or not. I would hate to share and then change our minds or something.

Food cravings: Steak! And I had it when we went out to lunch the other day, yummm.

Food aversions: Totally depends on the day with eating, but I am super easily grossed out by stuff like doing the dishes or questionable items in the fridge. It's difficult for me to even think about that.

Mood: Just so, so grateful. Starting on the nursery and registering has made it all very real. And I'm PUMPED for the holidays. (Although slightly overwhelmed because things are gonna be pretty crazy. But we are trying to do everything possible as it won't be as easy next year! Gotta go all out!)

Movement: As of this past week, you can see him moving from the outside. Soooo cool/crazy. One of my best friends Maggie was officially the second person to feel him move. And then last night my brother Blake saw him move. (I try not to freak the little bro out by inviting him to place his hand upon my belly. Now I can tell him to watch.)

Milestones: Began registering, painted the nursery, saw him move for the first time!

Best moments of the week: Registering with Jordan (which involved him controlling the scanner and us laughing at our lack of knowledge of what to put on there), spending time with my friend Jenna who has two little ones and asking her a million questions, finishing up a fun basketball season with Jordan's team, painting the nursery and re-doing the closet (well I mainly watched), going to the Psalm 100 a cappella concert with some of the Shelleys & friends, celebrating my Grandaddy's 84th birthday, hitting up a big Kohl's sale with my mom and picking out some baby clothes. :) 

Quotes: When I was at my friend Jenna's house, I was playing with her 2 1/2 year old son Everette. As he was introducing me to his favorite show, he was pretty comfy and snuggly with me. At one point he started kinda climbing up me and Jenna told him not to and reminded him that there is a baby in my tummy. He looked rather surprised as he remembered this (they were at our gender reveal) and I let him know that it is indeed true there's a baby boy in there. His eyes widened, he got excited, and he immediately leaned close and grabbed my shirt to peer down into it exclaiming, "Let me see him! Where is he?" We erupted in laughter and explained that none of us can see the baby yet, we have to wait. He seemed to still want to inspect inside my shirt but Jenna prevented him from having that disappointing view again.  

Jordan quotes: Jordan and I don't call each other pet names much, but privately we do sometimes. He likes to refer to me as his "baby girl". So one night as we were being cuddly, he put his hand on my belly and told me, "This is my child, but you will always be my baby." :)

Now that I've noticed the baby responding to sounds, Jordan has started singing and playing the guitar to him. Sometimes it will be whatever song he happens to be singing, other times he'll make up some words for the little guy. I'll have to start writing them down or something!

Verses I've been dwelling on: "And I will give you a new heart, and a new spirit I will put within you. And I will remove the heart of stone from your flesh and give you a heart of flesh. And I will put my Spirit within you, and cause you to walk in my statutes and be careful to obey my rules. You shall dwell in the land that I gave to your fathers, and you shall be my people, and I will be your God. And I will deliver you from all your uncleannesses." -- Ezekiel 36:26-29


Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Baby Shelley: 21 Weeks

21 Weeks

Weight gain: 5 lbs

Maternity clothes: Finally filling out my Target maternity dresses so I'm excited to wear those. Now I just need to get some tights!

Sleep: Haven't been sleeping well due to a crazy rash situation. About a week ago I started having some little bumps on my left wrist that itched a lot. I have sensitive skin that randomly does stuff like that so I didn't think much of it. The next day it had grown and was worse. And then by the weekend it had turned into a full blown raised red area and spread to other places on my hands, my belly, and my face. The itchiness was INSANE. Even my lips have swollen up. The doctor said that whatever it is has been exaggerated by my pregnancy hormones, yay. 

Medication: Down to one Zofran pill a day! :) Have been taking Benadryl at night to help me sleep with this rash nonsense. I've used creams and done everything they told me to do when I called the doctor to tell them. I've also used coconut oil with a few drops of lavender to soothe and heal. It has helped and I think it's getting better but it's been ridiculous. So glad it's not summer because anything with heat makes it worse, especially hot water. 

Gender: IT'S A BOY! I WAS SO WRONG! More on this in tomorrow's post about the gender reveal. :)

Food cravings: I think I've had broccoli cheddar soup four or five times since my last post, so still stuck on that. 

Food aversions: I surprisingly prepared and ate ground beef the other day when we had tacos so that's good. I still have some issues with chicken sometimes. 

Mood: So, so happy about having a boy and how wonderfully the gender reveal party went!

Movement: Lots and getting stronger! Jordan felt him move last night (11/11/14) for the first time so that was a cool moment. 

Milestones: Had the gender reveal party and announced that it's a boy, picked paint colors for the nursery, Jordan felt the baby move, and we start registering tonight!

Best moments of the week: Being surrounded by our closest family and friends at our home and celebrating baby boy was amazing. Seriously one of the best days ever. The night before and that night we had some of Jordan's family staying with us, and we went out to eat after the party with them and my parents. It was a BLAST. We also got to Skype my BFF in Vermont to tell her the news. :) 

Quotes: When getting paint from Lowe's, a man probably in his 50's or 60's came up to us and said, "Do NOT pick pink or blue. The doctor told us we were having a boy and then guess what? GIRL. Also, I have bad news. (I was like oh no here comes a horror story...) My wife was due mid-August but she didn't have her until October." He then went on to tell the whole story. It was kind of hard to follow, but definitely an interesting encounter.

At the cash register a Lowe's worker asked us if we have a name picked out yet. (We don't.) She then said, "Just PLEASE don't name him Coco or Apple." We then vowed to not name our baby Coco Apple Shelley.

My sweet friend Carrie who is one of my greatest encouragers in life sent me this text the day before the gender reveal.

Not that we're going to FORCE our kid to play basketball or anything, but I love how she appreciates that it can be a baller regardless of gender. :) She's awesome.

Right after we announced boy at the party, my adorable grandparents hugged me as they were tearing up and my grandaddy said, "My Ashley Joy is having a boy!" It was so cute.

Jordan quotes: Well, if you haven't heard, Zoboomafoo the lemur passed away this week. This specific lemur and his tv show began Jordan's love for lemurs, his favorite animal. So he asked if we could get a stuffed lemur for the nursery in honor of Zoboomafoo. It's a very serious matter that I'm gonna try to make happen.

We were in our usual nonstop texting conversation talking about how great of a weekend we had and how fun it was, and Jordan said, "Love being with you! Gonna be hard to share you with the baby haha" :) This was both sweet and true. We'll have to figure out how to keep our dating relationship going strong once baby gets here! 

Last night when he felt the baby kick, Jordan said, "Wow. Maybe he'll be a punter."

Verses I've been dwelling on: "I have loved you with an everlasting love; therefore I have continued my faithfulness to you." -- Jeremiah 31:3

Monday, November 3, 2014

Baby Shelley: 19-20 Weeks

19-20 Weeks

Weight gain: 3.5 lbs

Maternity clothes: Got a new amazingly comfy waterfall cardigan from Loft that I'll be wearing pretty much every day because it's wonderful.

Sleep: Sleeping pretty well on my left side lately, which is the recommended sleep position so yay! Hardly slept at ALL the night before the ultrasound. That's the first event in my life when I've really had a hard time sleeping beforehand. Before other big life things like our wedding I slept like a rock, haha. 

Medication: Weaning off of the Zofran more, but I took it a little too far this week. I've been trying to do just one pill a day, but my body couldn't take it on Thursday and I almost didn't make it to pulling over when I was driving Jordan's car. But I made it thankfully! I always feel bad for the people who have to witness my side of the road vomiting. Sorry, people. I feel like fruit snacks are my second medication these days. If I start feeling bad I sit still and eat them very slowly and it helps, haha.

Gender prediction: We found out on Thursday! Will announce this weekend. :) SO PUMPED!

Food cravings: BROCCOLI CHEDDAR SOUP all day erry day.

Food aversions: I tried some Goldfish for the first time since July the other day and they were alright, but I wasn't really into them. Maybe someday my love for them will return.

Mood: I was FULL of anticipation and some anxiousness for our anatomy ultrasound. So thankful that I could talk to the Lord about it, He definitely gave us peace and reminded me that He already knows everything that's going on in there! And since the ultrasound I've been getting more and more excited as the thought of the gender starts to sink in. AHHHH!

Movement: Moving so much! I was informed at the ultrasound that the baby is hanging out toward the surface with the placenta behind, so that's one reason why I've been able to feel so much movement fairly early on. Last night before I went to sleep my hand happened to be resting on my belly and I felt the baby externally for the first time! It was so cool. I could even feel it shifting and moving. I thought about waking Jordan up but he had just fallen asleep and will feel it in due time. :)

Milestones: Well we are HALFWAY and we FOUND OUT THE GENDER! And that the baby is super healthy and developing wonderfully so far. It was just so amazing to see the baby moving around, waving at us, grasping its leg, opening its mouth, and looking positively adorable in my opinion. It made it even more real and exciting. 

Best moments of the week: Well, it's been two weeks...so let's see. We had a fabulous time at Jordan's Granma's house for their annual weenie roast with almost all of the cousins! Jordan had his test that day so the weekend consisted of him winding down from that. We had a wonderful date night to celebrate -- Japanese food and (cooked) sushi at our favorite place provided by Jordan's parents, and then a cookie cake with ice cream from my parents. They are so, so good to us! Then this past week we had the ultrasound first thing in the morning on Thursday with a Bojangles breakfast date after. It was SUCH a great morning. Friday night we went to a little costume party with some of our favorite people. Saturday was our church fall festival (that felt like a WINTER festival) and we loved spending time with our chapel family singing praise songs around the bonfire. We started on some house projects and are going into full nesting mode! So far this involves purging and painting. 

Quotes: A bank teller congratulated me on the pregnancy and asked what the baby is the day after we found out, so I mayyy have told him, haha. I won't say where because my mom might track the guy down and corner him. 

Jordan quotes: I need to start writing these down because I forget them! The one I can think of was on Halloween when Jordan was dressed up in a ridiculous costume. He's the one on the right.

So when he was putting it on, it started inflating through the fan where that little circle is. He then said something about dressing up like me. As in my body is already inflated. As in comparing me to the giant blob you see above. Bahaha. It may sound mean but it was hilarious, and he has sweet comments too I just can't remember them right now besides gender related ones. :)

Verses I've been dwelling on: In my pregnancy devotional book, it had a devotion about the anatomy ultrasound. It REALLY helped with my nervousness about it so I'll put the excerpt with the Scripture here.

"His disciples asked Him, 'Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents, that he was born blind?' 'Neither this man nor his parents sinned,' said Jesus, 'but this happened so that the work of God might be displayed in his life.'" -- John 9:2-3

"As the day drew near for our baby's twenty-week ultrasound, I was both giddy and fearful. I couldn't wait for the sneak peek at our little one, but I also couldn't help worrying that the ultrasound would reveal a genetic abnormality or problem. Try as I might, I couldn't block out this fear.

What if the ultrasound had revealed a serious medical issue? Thought it would have taken some time to adjust to this new reality, the truth is that God would still have been at work glorifying Himself through the situation. As in the story of the blind beggar whom Jesus healed, I could have rested in the fact that 'this happened so that the work of God might be displayed.' I could also have rested in the truth that God would give me enough grace for each day He had given me with this little one.

Is your God big enough to carry you through whatever comes your way? Will you praise Him in the hard times as well as in the times of rejoicing? These words aren't meant to cause undue worry, but to spur us to cling to the truth of God's goodness no matter what trials come. They also remind us that every child is a gift."

-- Catherine Claire Larson, Waiting in Wonder

I HIGHLY recommend this devotional book (thanks, Mom!) as it has been so encouraging with prompts for me to write out prayers for the baby and our family. It starts at 5 weeks so get it early in your pregnancy! :) 


Friday, October 24, 2014

Baby Shelley: 18 Weeks

By the time this posts, I'll be almost 19 weeks. I took a little social media break, but after this weekly update I want to start posting these on Wednesdays, and then having other posts on other days. :) If I did it the day I graduate to the next week I would post them on Sundays, but I want to give myself time to take the pic and write the post.

18 Weeks

Weight gain: Back down to none. (But I had to gain to get back to pre-pregnancy weight due to sickness.) The belly has definitely popped, though!

Maternity clothes: As you can see from all weekly photos so far, I love my solid long sleeved maternity tops that will continue to stretch and stretch! Finally got my bootcut maternity jeans hemmed so I'll be able to wear more than just one pair of jeans all the time. :)

Sleep: Sleeping okay, but having lots of crazy dreams that sometimes really freak me out. I've always been a weird dreamer but pregnancy has made it increase a LOT. Last night I had a dream that I had little pieces of onion stuck in my skin all over my body and I was trying to get them out. It was disgusting.

Medication: Trying to only be on Zofran now! So far so good...I still have my moments and some days are better than others, but nothing like what I was going through before thankfully.

Gender prediction: I had my first gender dream this week and the dream agreed with my girl intuition. We'll see next week, Lord willing!

Food cravings: So many grilled cheese sandwiches. I am stuck on those. I tried my first Concord grape at a ladies' fellowship thing the other night and after that I HAD to get some grape juice. Breakfast food such as eggs and bacon with orange juice has been delightful, and I've reallyyyy been wanting some good grits. Got some cotton candy from the fair like I always do and it's delicious!

Food aversions: I've kinda been anti-chicken lately. A Chick-Fil-A chicken strip that I ate had some weird chewiness to it and I literally had to run to the door, take it out of my mouth, and throw it outside. Not at Chick-Fil-A if you're wondering. That would've been interesting. We also ate at our favorite Mexican place the other night and I couldn't get my usual order of ACP (chicken with rice and queso), so I got steak fajitas. 

Mood: Have had a few more dramatic moments of frustration/worry that Jordan has lovingly walked me through. He is highly skilled at knowing how to first "get" me, then how to handle whatever moment I'm having. He deserves all the awards. But overall I've been happy happy happy to be able to actually do stuff, see people, work out, and just be more myself. 

Movement: Baby is moving all around in there, but it definitely varies. Which was one of my worries the other day, because it had moved SO much last week and then I had a day when I couldn't remember feeling it move at all. It kinda worried me, but I know (and Jordan reminded me) that the Lord knows EXACTLY what's going on in there, who the child is going to be, and that He is forming the baby for His glory -- through good or tough circumstances. I love being able to rest in that, regardless of what the future holds.

Milestones: First stranger noticed I'm pregnant and she said I looked "really cute" which made me feel so good!

Best moments of the week: Finally getting some fall decorations up, getting such a sweet gift from my Grandma of a couple baby outfits and blankets, going to the NC State Fair, knowing that this is the LAST week Jordan will be studying for his Professional Engineering exam! Can't wait to celebrate! The weather has been outstanding here in our part of NC, and one night was the perfect amount of chilly to sit cuddled in blankets with Jordan on the deck, making some s'mores by the fire pit. We are really cherishing this time as a family of two, but also dreaming about when the little one is here. It's such a sweet time.

Quotes: I'm going to start putting comments from random people in here too, since some of them are quite funny/weird/sweet. I had my first pretty negative comment the other day. It is so interesting what people have to say, especially people I don't even know. I was in a group of people I didn't know besides one or two, and they were all asking me pregnancy questions and adding bits of their own pregnancy stories (some pretty terrifying). One lady was talking about her pregnancy and said, "My stomach never got as big as hers is now," pointing at my belly. Yikes. The conversation kept flowing and I just kept my mouth shut. I'm sure she didn't mean it badly in her mind, but good grief. Haha. 

Jordan quotes: The baby started kicking me while we were talking and praying about his test, and Jordan shouted, "THE BABY BELIEVES IN ME!"

Verses I've been dwelling on: "Are we beginning to commend ourselves again? Or do we need, as some do, letters of recommendation to you, or from you? You yourselves are our letter of recommendation written on our hearts, to be known and read by all. And you show that you are a letter from Christ delivered by us, written not with ink but with the Spirit of the living God, not on tablets of stone but on tablets of human hearts. Such is the confidence that we have through Christ toward God. Not that we are sufficient in ourselves to claim anything as coming from us, but our sufficiency is from God, who has made us sufficient to be ministers of a new covenant, not of the letter but of the Spirit. For the letter kills, but the Spirit gives life." -- 2 Corinthians 3:1-6


Thursday, October 16, 2014

Baby Shelley: 17 Weeks

17 Weeks

Weight gain: Fluctuating around 1-2 lbs. (My tummy seems to look a lot bigger in that picture than it actually is...but maybe it really is that big, haha. Some shirts make it look super pokey-outy. But I'm also 17.5 weeks in the pic...we couldn't take it earlier because it's been so rainy!)

Maternity clothes: I tried to wear normal jeans at the church retreat with the hair band trick and after doing that all day it started to hurt. So no more of that for me! Maternity all the way. I will definitely be doing a post on the two pairs of maternity jeans I've gotten because I LOVE them. And Stitch Fix has sent me some great maternity clothes, so I can't wait to share about that!

Sleep: Still tired a lot. Now that the baby has grown even more and the doctor ordered me to drink at least 80 oz. of water a day, I'm getting up multiple times in the night for the bathroom. 

Medication: Still on the Zofran and Phenergan around the clock. Tried to test myself a bit by going longer than 6 hours, but learned I definitely can't do that yet.

Gender prediction: Still think it's a girl, but having more doubt. We find out 2 weeks from today!

Food cravings: Still the same things and also grilled cheese sandwiches, Nutty Butty bars, Skittles, pretzels, and fried okra. 

Food aversions: I ate an apple during the retreat so that was successful! Still no Goldfish, no ground beef. I never really know what I'm going to feel about something until it's time to eat it/prepare it. Still difficult to prepare food or even think about what to cook. 

Mood: The past few days, and especially today, I've been SO EMOTIONAL. Usually in a weepy way, but sometimes in a bad way. Today I got super moody and down about some things. The thing is, I KNOW I'm being dramatic but it just won't stop! Sounds so dumb. But I need to work on surrendering those bad moods to the Spirit and having Scripture ready in my mind to whip me back into shape.

Movement: YES! As I'm typing the baby is kicking me/poking me/doing jumping jacks. It's AMAZING. When I was sitting at a meeting at the church retreat I felt the baby move for the first time for SURE, as in there was no doubt in my mind that's what it was. Ever since then it's only gotten stronger. I really think it's had a big growth spurt and that's why I can feel it move so much more all the sudden and have felt sicker/moodier the past couple days. My belly has also been really itchy from growing and stretching. That may be totally off but there's definitely stuff going on in there! It is so cool. Makes me feel so much more attached to the baby and emotionally tied to it. I'll address that in a later post also. :) I keep finding myself wanting to just sit and feel it move, and then I want to tell anyone and everyone, "It's kicking! It just kicked me! Isn't that crazy?!" over and over, haha. I LOVE IT.

Milestones: Feeling it move so much for the first week! It can hear now so I'm trying to pick a song to consistently sing to it. 

Best moments of the week: Having a great time at the church retreat, my sis-in-law & her best friend (who's basically family) choosing a song to always sing to the baby ('Tis So Sweet to Trust in Jesus), spending time with my fam yesterday -- exploring with my mom downtown, eating at Moe's with her, my bro, and my dad, having some fun quality time with Jordan when I returned from the retreat and he took a study break. :)

Jordan quotes: 

"Womb fit"...hahaha. Jordan has been so sweet about talking to the little one and saying hello to it. It'll be so cool when he can start to feel it moving, too!

Verses I've been dwelling on: "But Moses said to the Lord, 'Oh, my Lord, I am not eloquent, either in the past or since you have spoken to your servant, but I am slow of speech and of tongue.' Then the Lord said to him, 'Who has made man's mouth? Who makes him mute, or deaf, or seeing, or blind? Is it not I, the Lord? Now therefore go, and I will be with your mouth and teach you what you shall speak.'" -- Exodus 4:10-12 (studying the life of Moses in BSF)


Thursday, October 9, 2014

Baby Shelley: 16 Weeks

16 Weeks

Weight gain: Finally back to pre-pregnancy weight which was confirmed today at the doctor! Hurray for sickness improvement!

Maternity clothes: YES. Love them. Didn't want to sacrifice comfort to keep wearing all normal clothes...I am all about comfort! Also, a fall/winter pregnancy seems to be pretty sweet. Jeans/leggings and a comfy tunic are the way to go!

Sleep: Besides a few nights of fitful tossing and turning, I could sleep all. the. time. Partially because I'm tired, partially due to medication. Starting to use a pillow between my legs to train me to sleep on my side.

Medication: Took out a dosage of Zofran so I don't have to get up in the night and take it. Still definitely reliant on both Zofran and Phenergan. 

Gender prediction: Since the day of finding out I've said that I think it's a girl. We'll see about that whole intuition thing! Good thing we have a bunch of boy names we like and NO girl names...

Food cravings: There have been a few foods that haven't come back up that I've kept returning to -- Bojangles' plain biscuits with sweet tea, Hibachi chicken + veggies, Coke, Wendy's chocolate Frosty, original Pringles, chocolate milk, freezy pops. Recently steak. OHMYWORD STEAK I want it so badly. 

Food aversions: Never thought I'd say this, but I can't do apples or Goldfish. Two of the loves of my life. Let's just say I've had very bad experiences with them and haven't been able to revisit them yet. Can't do hamburgers or anything that is ground beef related. Still difficult for me to prepare food.

Mood: This week I've been much more myself. Jordan and I have been going through The Office again and that has made me cry numerous times. I just love the characters oh so much.

Movement: I thought I felt something a few nights ago as I was going to sleep! It felt different than any other stomach/abdomen feelings. It's hard for me to describe without showing you how it felt, haha. Like a tiny fairy doing jazz hands in my belly. That's the best I can do.

Milestones: Had my 16 week check-up and set the date for finding out the gender! Heard the heartbeat for the second time, and heard some STRONG kicks. That was so cool. Possibly feeling movement. Having my BEST week so far.

Best moments of the week: Getting to finally hang out with the people I love now that I'm feeling better -- going to Jordan's basketball game with his family, hanging out with his cousin Brooke and her boyfriend Garrick, spending time with my friend Carrie (she brought me lunch & flowers!), having a movie night with my parents and brother, visiting Thanks a Latte with one of my best friends Sydney, visiting my Nanny for her birthday with my mom, going to BSF, the doctor's appointment. Hopefully my church retreat trip this weekend will be wonderful too!

Jordan quotes: "Okay, SANTA." -- a sassy response he made to me concerning my belly. I got all kinds of jolly with him real quick.

Verses I've been dwelling on: "The Lord is exalted, for He dwells on high; He will fill Zion with justice and righteousness, and He will be the stability of your times, abundance of salvation, wisdom, and knowledge; the fear of the Lord is Zion's treasure." - Isaiah 33:5-6


Thursday, October 2, 2014

Telling My Family & the Attack of Sickness

I thought it would be difficult for me to keep the big secret from people. Wrong-o. I liked it being a secret, just between me and Jordan. For some reason when we tell people I get all embarrassed and weird feeling. I don't know why...maybe it's just because it's a big change? Or it feels like it's asking for attention? Or because it's so surreal that I'm scared to tell? Or it makes it more real? Probably all of the above.

Anyway, none of my feelings on the matter changed the fact that we were forced to tell people due to the violent onslaught of my sickness. 

I was nearing the end of week 5 of the pregnancy. We were with my mom's side of the family at our annual beach vacation reunion at Myrtle Beach when things went awry. One day I was living it up on the beach, eating delicious food, playing Spike Ball, spending time with my beloved cousins, and then the next day I was annihilated by relentless vomiting.

Not nausea. 

Not morning sickness. 

Extreme stomach bug-like misery. Throwing up 20+ times a day horribleness.

It began en route to Moe's with the entire fam. Luckily I was in my parents' car with them and Jordan, which was actually weird now that I think about it that I wasn't with my cousins but I'm glad God worked that little detail out.

After confusing and shocking my parents by getting them to abruptly pull over (I never get car sick) (ps -- it's also quite hard to abruptly do anything in Myrtle Beach traffic), I ran out of the car and threw up immediately. Upon looking up, I realized I was directly beside an outdoor eating area at a restaurant. To the people who were having a nice dinner up until that moment: I am so, so sorry. But I probably didn't even look too out of place because, hey, it was Myrtle Beach.

Jordan helped me and we tried to play it off like we didn't know what happened or why it could've occurred. As soon as we met up with everyone else at Moe's and they had all been informed of the reason for our delay, my cousin Tom gave me an interesting look. Oh no, I thought. He knows.

And he did. Tom is an experienced health professional who has worked EMS and in the ER for years. He saw right through our little lies. He let me know he had liquid Zofran he could inject me with if I needed it (kind of as a joke) but didn't say anything about pregnancy. After I still felt badly the rest of the night and then woke up early with it in full force, I knew I needed help.

Tom came downstairs to our condo that morning and told Jordan, "Look, I think your wife needs to take a test." Jordan then walked him into our room where I was and Tom was officially the first to know our news. He wasn't really surprised besides the fact that no one else in the entire world knew, haha. Bless you, Tom! 

I naively wanted to wait and see if it subsided before resorting to medication. It absolutely did not. I was getting stick every 20-30 minutes consistently. We knew we had to tell the fam before they started to really worry or think I was possibly infecting them all with a terrible bug. 

I honestly cried about this whole thing because I had been dreaming of cute and fun ways to tell them (especially my parents for their first grandchild experience) and doing it this way seemed neither cute nor fun. Jordan thankfully was understanding of this and offered to find a way to make it a little bit fun.

Soooo, Jordan went down to the IGA to get me ginger ale, crackers, and some sort of something to tell my parents with. He came back with a little baby swimmer bottom thing. It was indeed cute. 

We waited for Tom and my aunt to leave the condo so it could be just my parents (my bro was still asleep). My dad was doing some back stretches on the floor and my mom was nearby at the kitchen table. Jordan basically just tossed the swim diaper to my dad and said something like, "We're gonna be needing this next year." 

It took them a second to realize what it was and what it meant. Then they just bear hugged me while tearing up. It's hard for me to remember because I was so sick, but it was sweet and cute and all that. :)

Then we made our way to the other condos in between vomiting sessions to tell the rest of my extended family. Even though it wasn't how we thought it would be, I'm so glad we got to tell them because the next time we would see them the baby would be born! (Lord willing.) We are very close with them even though we only see them once or twice a year. They were so excited. Well. The women were, the guys were just like oh wow, weird. Haha. 

Then dear angel Tom gave me the Zofran, which thankfully was able to be shot down my throat rather than injected. That gave me about five hours of relief so I was able to go on the beach one more time, sleep some, and eat a piece of bread with some ginger ale. Ha.

My very enthusiastic mom, great aunts, and cousin wanted to take a pic in honor of the baby news.

Unfortunately that was the only dosage of Zofran he had, so that night and the next day were absolutely miserable. I couldn't keep a sip of ANYTHING down, I was getting really dehydrated, and we had to make the trip home. That trip was pure misery. It's only a few hours of a drive but we had to pull over 9 or 10 times for me to throw up on the side of the road. I could barely even move or talk. I would grunt and point toward the door when I needed Jordan to pull over. 

When we finally pulled into our driveway I started crying tears of relief (although there weren't many actual tears due to the lack of moisture in my body). Looking back, we probably should have gone straight to the hospital at this point, but if you know me you know how I am -- even going to the doctor for any sickness is the last last resort for me always. I can't even remember the last time I went to the doctor besides my OB-GYN yearly check-up. BUT if you for some reason are reading this and experiencing this PLEASE go to the hospital and get meds and fluids! I knew I had my "I'm pregnant" doctor's appointment in a couple days so I thought I could make it until then.

Another dear angel who is a surgeon friend of ours called in an emergency prescription for Zofran and Phenergan for me. It took a while for Jordan to get it because it wasn't ready. All I remember is laying on the bed staring at the Google Chromecast screen on our tv at the pretty screensaver pictures, praying and willing each minute on the clock to pass so he could be home. Oh, and also **TMI alert** throwing up blood at this point.

Jordan returned and was quite scared of my kind of delirious demeanor and blood-puking state, so he prayed and prayed the medicine would work quickly. It thankfully knocked me out so I could sleep and drink a little bit of Gatorade. Jordan would wake me up to drink some Gatorade but I don't even remember that.

The next week was spent gradually getting liquids and some food into my system while trying to recover, thanks to the glorious medications. Of course I would prefer not to be on them, but at my doctor's appointment that week they confirmed that I needed both if I wanted to be able to get any nutrients at all. I was introduced to the term hyperemesis gravidarum (aka HG...if that sounds familiar you've probably heard it about Kate Middleton. Jordan thinks I should write her a letter and become bff's. I agree.) They also confirmed that I'm pregnant. Ha.

My mom and my amazing husband helped me constantly during this time. This was definitely love in action as I could do nothing for myself and I was a disgusting mess. Again, if you are in this situation please go to the hospital. Thankfully I was alright but it was due to these factors: medication in the nick of time, not having to work that week at all so I could sleep TONS, my mom/Jordan being able to be my nurses, and the lack of any existing children/major responsibilities at that time. Oh and by the grace of the Lord of course!

Seriously, His timing is amazing. If I had experienced this earlier in the year I would have had to miss many things that I had committed to. Which, of course, would have been worth it for the baby, but the end of the summer was a good time for me to be out of commission. Also Jordan had started studying every day for his upcoming engineering test, so he had already planned to be home when he wasn't working.

I'll tell more about how the sickness has gone in my first trimester post, and also about how we told Jordan's side of the family and friends. 

Please take this info as just a record of how things have gone, NOT as complaining. I am alright, the baby is growing, and the Lord has been completely faithful through good and bad. I can make a whole list of positives from all this, and I probably will. :)

Thank you for the sweet comments! I'm excited to be back into blogging!

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Finding Out the Big News

It all started at camp. Okay, no it didn't START start then, haha, but the SYMPTOMS started then. So for those of you who were at camp with me, yes, I was pregnant then and didn't know it yet. I'll use subconscious motherly instinct as my excuse for not doing the rappelling or the high elements at all. :) 

I began feeling weird pretty much as early as possible in the pregnancy. Toward the end of the week I was feeling ultra tired, weak, and feverish. I thought I had just overdone it and that it could be from a lack or sleep and lots of physical activity. Jordan agreed. (We were working together at camp which was absolutely wonderful.)

I knew pregnancy was a possibility, but according to my app tracker thing I thought we probably missed the window of time that it could happen due to camp. I have always kept track of cycles since I've had a smart phone (which I totally recommend -- it is sooo easy. I'll go over helpful apps in another post). Our marriage life was just happening as usual without any changes, so we weren't scheduling or doing anything differently (besides not preventing). 

The day after we got home we went to church, ate lunch at my Grandma's, and I was still feeling off. I didn't even do the nursery that day because I was afraid I had something contagious due to my fever. After we left lunch I decided to stop by the dollar store to get a few tests. I knew it was a possibility, but I truly thought I was just feeling bad because of camp, which is pretty normal for me. And it was about that time of the month anyway, so I thought that may have something to do with it. I tried not to read too much into it, but wanted to ease my mind. (By the way, $1 tests worked great for me. I recommend them!)

We arrived home and my consumption of Grandma's sweet tea aided in my test administration. I sat there and used the dropper (if you've taken a dollar store test you know what I mean), and as soon as the test line appeared -- BAM -- a second one did too. I was like...wait. What?? Is that supposed to happen? Did I do it right? I thought I was supposed to wait a few minutes? But there it was, clear as day. 

After I sat there staring at it for a minute or two, I walked downstairs to show Jordan. He was sitting at the kitchen bar watching the World Cup on his laptop. He immediately read the look on my face and then looked at the test. We didn't say much, honestly, just hugged and prayed and hugged and prayed. It's a very surreal and strange feeling. I almost felt shy to show him, haha. 

We were cautiously excited. We hung out in disbelief that night just talking, dreaming, and figuring out when it would be born. We decided not to tell anyone until after the first doctor's appointment at least, not wanting to hype our parents up before knowing if every thing seemed a-okay. HA. That changed. But that's another story. 

I think I took another test the next day just to confirm. And then I took one again that Thursday on my birthday. I remember thinking that if the line was faint or gone that time then it could possibly be the worst birthday ever, but I just HAD to do it again that day to see if it was progressing. It was! After that third test I don't think the second line could have gotten any darker. 

I definitely didn't have to take any tests after that to make sure I was really pregnant, because the sickness hit in full force the next week. That will be my next story, so stay tuned!

We're having a BABY!

We are so thankful to announce that we are expecting a baby in March of 2015!

It's been a tough journey so far, but I'm grateful for a growing baby and for the Lord's perfect timing. We are feeling many different things -- excited, overwhelmed, scared, nervous, weirded out, happy, giddy, scared (did I say that one?), etc.

There is lots to share and I hope to be getting back into blogging, although I don't want pregnancy to take it over completely! This will still focus on life as follower of Christ and a wife first. That won't be changing. :) BUT there will be quite a few pregnancy related posts as I catch up on what's been going on, and then I'll do regular updates as I transition back into normal writing. 

Thank you for all your kind words, support, and encouragement on Facebook and Instagram, they have been so sweet and uplifting! We are so appreciative. All glory and thanks be to God for this precious gift.


Friday, March 14, 2014

Stitch Fix #3 Review

My third Stitch Fix box came the last day we were in Ohio, so I got to open it a little differently this time. When we got home, Jordan wouldn't let me open it...I had to sit there with my eyes closed while he opened it and described the item to me in game-show-like fashion, and THEN I could look at it. Haha. It was fun. :) 

If you haven't seen my other Stitch Fix reviews, here they are:

Stitch Fix Review #1
Stitch Fix Review #2

For those of you new to this idea, here is the description from their site:

"Stitch Fix has re-invented shopping, the way women really want to shop. Keep your wardrobe up-to-date with no hassle. You give us your size and style preferences, and your stylist sends you a selection of 5 items picked just for you. Try everything on at home, and only pay for what you want to keep! Free shipping both ways and a 25% discount if you buy all 5 items."

I LOVE Stitch Fix because:
  • It's easy. I strongly dislike shopping and making decisions so the help of the stylist is great.
  • It's fun. I was so pumped to get my box, see what was inside, and pick out new clothes!
  • It's convenient. Having it sent to my house to try on in my room with no shipping charge? Awesome.
  • It's customized for me. My stylist picks out the pieces especially for me and my body type.
The styling fee is $20, and then that goes toward whatever you want to buy. Thank to you anyone who has signed up using my referral link! Whenever someone signs up with your link and gets her first box, you get $25 credit. Which is lovely.

Also, let me clarify that this is not a subscription -- you pick when and how often to get a box! So no need to worry about fees or commitments. 

Alright, let's get to the clothes! THANK YOU to my wonderful stylist, Dolene. You rock. It was another fabulous selection! Again, I kept the whole box

Firstly, I asked for an open cardigan, mainly because I gave my mom one for Christmas and it looks so amazing on her that I regretted not getting one for myself. My stylist picked out the Pomelo Carla Contrast Trim Drape-Front Cardigan.

It's perfect! The color, the detail, the fit, the extreme pajama-like comfort...I love it. I also asked my stylist for this box to be more "springy", and this is a perfect transition piece. 

Underneath it is the next item, the Daniel Rainn Minna V-Neck 3/4 Sleeve Dot-Print Blouse

When Jordan first described it to me and said "with attached tank top" I was like noooo. No. No. I loathe attached tank tops (and also built-in bras for that matter) because they never fit me. Butttt...this one did! And is a wonderfully soft, stretchy material that I appreciate. I was pleasantly surprised.

It is lower in the back, so here is a back view.

I love the navy with coral and mint dots. By the way, those wedges are my favorite shoes of all time that I got in 2008 I think. They're Nine West in a size Narrow which is SO HARD TO COME BY. I could write full posts, nay, books, on my lifelong quest for shoes that fit my feet. Maybe I will. But anyway, they are the best shoes ever and I will mourn them if they ever become unwearable. 

The jeans are high waisted skinny ones from American Eagle. They almost look black in the pics, but they're just a dark denim wash. Their "high waist" is actually pretty regular to me, haha. They don't come up to my belly button or anything. (Let's not even talk about how their "regular" rise jeans fit me. I'll just say if I wore them I'd never be able to bend over, ever.) But I LOVE AE jeans. I have a pair from 9th grade that have been patched three times and I can't wear anymore due to the fact that when you hold them up they are see through. So yeah. I digress.

The next item is probably my favorite of the bunch: the Collective Concepts Cathleen Abstract Print Tulip-Sleeve Blouse.

These colors are perfect for spring! And I love the cut of the top which hangs a little bit lower in the back. It's so different from anything that I have and was just the kinda thing I was hoping for with this box. Thumbs UP!

I also got a dress in my box for the first time. It's the Under Skies Gabrielle Ikat Print Fit & Flare Dress.

The fit and flare style works great for my body type. The waist band is stretchy, but not too stretchy to where I have to tug on it all the time. I was quite pleased with this and will probably be wearing it to a couple spring/summer weddings.

I also received some basic Kensie skinny jeans in my box that were very similar to the ones I have on in the above pictures. I didn't love how they fit in certain areas, but like last time, it wasn't beneficial to me to send them back since I got a 25% discount for keeping the whole box. :) 

So there ya have it! A successful Stitch Fix Box #3!

When it comes to pricing, the cheapest items I've gotten have been in the $35-$45 range. The highest priced items I've gotten have been the pants which were in the $80s. You can set your preferred pricing range when you fill out our profile, and I have all of mine set on "as cheap as possible", haha. What's made it worth it to me is the convenience, the discount when I keep the whole box, the credit I've received, and the fact that I haven't purchased any other clothes AT ALL since November. 

Have you tried it yet? If you've blogged about it, please link to it in the comments because I love seeing what other people get. :) 

If you want to, please do use my referral link when you sign up to try it! Thanks so much. 

Hope y'all have an amazing weekend and that some of you are getting a break from the snow! Spring is coming, y'all. I hope. 

Thursday, March 13, 2014

I Finished the Bible!

After two years of what was supposed to be a one year reading plan, I finally finished reading the Bible.

Due to me cracking down and not allowing myself to read anything else for a little while as I finished, I am sorry that I didn't do my monthly Reading Link-Up for March! It will be back for April. :) 

Y'all, I can't encourage you enough to read the whole Bible. I don't know why I waited 23 years to read it all the way through. I had read a huge percentage of it throughout my life, but never purposefully read all of it until now. (I had started a few times without finishing.)

It was eye opening. Convicting. Encouraging. Life-giving. Exhilarating. Arduous at times, I'm not gonna lie. I especially struggled with Ezekiel for some reason. But EVERY book in it is amazing, especially how it all flows together and points to Jesus. At times I would feel so humbled and grateful not only to be reading it, but to know how many copies and different versions I have of the Bible not even just in my home, but on my phone as well. I have the WORD of GOD at my fingertips constantly! It's mind boggling, really.

Here's one of my favorite spots in our house -- our reading nook in the office. 

This is a chair and ottoman that my parents got when we moved to their current house in 2002 I think. They recently updated their living room furniture and we were grateful to receive the comfy, blue chair! I've already spent so much time there, especially in the early morning light. It honestly helped with my Bible reading routine, knowing exactly when, where, and how I would be reading it. 

Another thing that helped tremendously was the app that I used: the YouVersion Bible app. There are many different plans to choose from with shorter or longer time goals, and also choices of what you actually want to read each day as you go through it. I chose to do the Old Testament and New Testament at the same time every day, so I had a few OT chapters and usually one NT chapter daily. I really liked it that way for my first time. 

I was so happy to see that completed plan! Each day it told me what percentage I had completed and how many days I had left which was quite motivating. I loved checking off each day. :) When I did get behind, I could tell it to "catch me up" and it would bring it up to date for me. (I obviously had to do that a few times!)

I think the next time I read it all the way through I will do it chronologically, but we'll see. For now I'll be focusing in on some specific books and passages, and also doing a few Bible studies that I'll fill you in on. :) 

The Lord has taught me SO much through this time of reading His Word. After I finished, I had a twinge of sadness not unlike when I finish a compelling fiction series. But I quickly realized that I have no reason to feel that way, because God's Word is living and active and will teach me even more the next time I read it! And the next. And the next. You get the idea!

How about you? Have you read through the Bible? And what way worked for you? 


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