Pregnancy Update: 6 Months

Man, this whole weeks into months thing is confusing as hell. According to my prenatal journal thingie and some pages on the interwebs, I am now in my 6th month. So, yeah. Guess it’s time for an update?

22weeks

A peek at month 5: Month 5 wasn’t an easy one. I had a lot of anxiety surrounding the baby (why can’t I feel baby yet? Is baby ok?), and my nausea came back abruptly, joined by heartburn, an eczema flare up, pelvic and hip pain, and insomnia. Weeeee. Oh, and my oven caught fire randomly while I was prepping dinner, causing me a great deal of stress and more strain on our finances. Amazingly, one of my co-workers and good friends saved the day and generously helped us get a new stove! Nesting ramped up, making me desperate to get things started in prepping for baby. Thankfully, it marked hitting the half way point and we also got to find out baby’s sex at an ultrasound! Woo!

And the ultrasound says….

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How far along am I right now? 22 weeks, 6 days. In my 6th month.

I am thinking…About baby names! We had River picked out for a girl, but nothing that we both love for a boy! Ruh roh.

I am thankful for…My job and my friends. The amount of kindness, understanding and generosity that they have shown us has been incredible.

I am creating…Started on a little gnome hat, but didn’t enjoy working in such a small gauge. I think I will maybe move on to Elizabeth Zimmerman’s Surprise Baby Jacket and some baby mittens. I am worried In Threes may be a little too femme for a boy. Thoughts?

I am going…to keep working at keeping our house tidy and sorting through our crap. Decluttering is my life.

I am hoping…that we find a name that we both love

Around the house…Even though it technically falls under month 6, I have to talk about it. My dear friend and neighbour, Anna, came over and helped me clean, declutter and organize our entire main floor. We now have a play room where our dining room used to be, a kitchen we can actually use and a family room that doesn’t feel like a bomb exploded. I love it!

Liam's new playroom

Liam’s new playroom

One of my favorite things…Cheese and fanta. Don’t judge me.

Weight Gain: More than 20lbs :D

Baby in the Produce World:  Baby Centre says baby is as big as spahgetti squash
Week22SpaghettiSquash_424x302
 Movement/Signs of the Baby: A few flutters here and there before the ultrasound. Around week 21 that changed and suddenly I feel more movement and stretching. Baby doesn’t kick and punch like his brother did, but is definitely an active little dude when he wants to be.

Cravings and Aversions: These days I’m craving dairy, mostly cheese. I also find myself craving comfort foods, like soups, stews and chowders. The only new aversion I seem to have is to Jane’s Chicken Nuggets, which happen to be one of the only things Liam will eat. Ugh.
Body Changes/Weirdness: Heartburn, bad eczema, bad hair. Ugh.
Other Random Babeh/Pregnancy thoughts: I am so curious to see what this baby looks like and what his personality is. He seems to be different from his brother already :)
Other Pictures from the 5th month:

More than just a number

Why is it whenever I get writing, something comes and throws off my groove. This time, it was a rough prenatal appointment that messed with my head.

For any of you that follow me on twitter and instagram, you know that I am a proud supporter of the #bootyrevolution and body positivity movement. What does this mean? Well, for me, it means loving your body. Period. No matter what shape or size you may be, you celebrate your beauty and your strength. I also go a bit further than that, and try to amplify the voices of those who fight against fat phobia and help teach people that fat doesn’t always mean unhealthy.

I am a fat woman. I have struggled with my body for my entire life, no matter what weight I was I always felt that I was unloveable and unattractive. I have struggled with my eating for as long as I can remember and so this is a huge step for me, to love myself without “but…! or if only I were __X___ size/weight”. I know I am not the healthiest I could be. I know I should eat better and be more active. This doesn’t meant that I am worth less, or that I am lazy or disgusting.

At my last prenatal appointment, I was seen by a new doctor (he was in because my regular dr was on vacation). He decided to spent the entire appointment harping on my weight, purely based on the numbers on the scale (he had no knowledge of my diet, lifestyle or family history). He was baffled that based on all the tests, I was healthy. I am a fat pregnant woman who has a healthy blood pressure, no diabetes and no other health concerns related to my weight. He was mean and left me feeling hurt and upset.

It was the first time I ever faced this kind of reaction from a medical professional, which I know means that I have been very lucky. I have heard so many horror stories and have been very fortunate to have drs who have been amazing. Until now. I am a very sensitive person and I really took this badly. It took me a week or so to really get over.

So, I am here now to talk to you, my readers, about what it’s like to be a fat woman. People look at you and they make assumptions. They assume you are gross, disgusting, lazy,  that you live off of junk food. They assume you are unhealthy and many decide that they should “help” by pointing out ways that you could be better. It is revolutionary that a fat person would love themselves as they are, not as a “Before”. I want to ask you to keep your fitness and diet tips to yourself, unless they were requested. Don’t give back handed compliments. And please, check yourself for those preconceived notions about people who are fat.

Thanks <3

Jellybean’s In Threes

Sorry for the silence lately. Life got a little nuts there for a bit. Between OB appointments, a very emotional preschooler, seeing friends and family and seriously bad sunburns, we’ve been trying to enjoy our downtime as much as possible. I have a pregnancy post and a review coming up in the next while, so keep an eye out for that. In the mean time, here is a finished knitting project I’ve been dying to share with you:

In Threes by Kelly Herdrich

Pattern info here.

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My Ravelry Project Page

I joined this project as part of a knit along with a great group of knitting moms here in Ottawa. Not knowing whether or not Jellybean was a boy or a girl, I wanted a neutral colour. I used left over Madeline Tosh Vintage from Liam’s Gramps, which ended up making the project that much more special to me.

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The pattern itself is great. Easy to follow, a quick knit (especially in the newborn size) with a ton of sizing options. The details are lovely and I think it’ll work on either a boy or a girl. I had Liam help me pick the buttons, and we ended up choosing a light wood button with a cute little detail.

inthreesFO3

I have a few more projects in mind for my December baby. Hopefully they go just as quickly and as beautifully.

Review: July Ipsy Glam Bag

Theme: Summer Lovin’

Bag: Love it! It’s super colourful and fun. So good!

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The Loot:

Bellapierre Mineral Lipstick in P.I.N.K

One day, as a young woman, I walked into a department store to buy my first lipstick. I was told that I could not pull off lipstick and I should stick to glosses. Needless to say, I love getting new lipsticks to try. This one is great. Feels so smooth and soft, not drying at all and had surprising staying power. Unfortunately, the mineral formula did not make my skin happy and it triggered my eczema (I have issues with all mineral formulas in all makeup). This makes me sad, because it was pretty great.

Gave it a try as soon as I got it. No other makeup on.

Gave it a try as soon as I got it. No other makeup on.

Jersey Shore Cosmetics Mongogo Vanilla Coconut Cream Lip Conditioner

Because of the skin issues I have, I am always willing to try a new lip conditioner/chapstick, whatever. While my initial impression wasn’t great (I associate Jersey Shore with the show, and expected something sort of…trashy?), this product smells great and did a decent job moisturizing my lips. It’s not the best lip conditioner that I’ve tried, but it’s not the worst either. Not bad for keeping in the car/at work/whatever.

Jo’Rel Parker Classico

I like the size of this perfume sample. I don’t get “exotic” from the scent at all. Instead, I’d say it’s a strong floral, which is pretty and summery. It is VERY strong though, so be very light with it. The rose amped on me immediately and I had to wash it off as it was making my whole family sneeze. One light dab on a wrist that is then tapped on my neck decolletage and other wrist was more than a enough.

City Color Cosmetics HD Powder

This product was well timed, as I am just about to finish up my Forever Make-up HD Powder and was willing to try something else. I found it more drying than the Forever Makeup formula, but it did help set everything on my face. I wish that you could get at more of the product more easily.

Jelly Pong Pong Cosmetics 2 in 1 Shadow/Liner

Unfortunately, this was the one product in this month’s bag that I just did like. It doesn’t spread/smudge well enough to be an effective shadow for me, and as a liner it was ok, but didn’t have good staying power or presence. When smudged, because of the colour, my eyelid ended up looking more dirty than pretty. The shine/metallic of the bronze disappears and it becomes just sort of muddy brown. I don’t see myself using it again, except as a really natural or barely there liner.

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Smudged swatches on my son’s hand, because he likes product like his mama.

Overall: I was pretty pleased with this bag, though there isn’t a ton of love for the individual products. The ones I liked didn’t do a perfect job, but maybe I’m just too picky and have standards that are too high? I think this bag would have worked better for someone who doesn’t have sensitive skin and a sensitivity to scents.

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Pregnancy Update: 5 Months

Well, I had the very best of intentions. As it turns out, being pregnant, while working and parenting a preschooler takes a lot of time and weekly updates just aren’t fitting in to our schedule. So, here’s the plan. I will post every month about the pregnancy. Hopefully that’ll work.

18weeks

A peek at month 4: It was so nice to leave the 1st trimester behind. Thankfully, it meant my 24 hr nausea lessened and I was able to cut my diclectin intake way down. Also, I was able to start drinking a bit of coffee again. Mornings are so much better now. Unfortunately, I don’t have the massive self confidence and body love that I did the first time around. I feel like a bit old lump. Very emotional, tired and sore. Got to meet my OB, and I love him! He is wonderful with Liam and super patient and kind to me. Unfortunately, I had an infection requiring heavy duty antibiotics which are messing with my belly.

Baby attended his/her first concert in utero, as I went to go see Sarah Harmer with some friends for my birthday.

How far along am I right now? 18 weeks, or 5 months.

I am thinking…About whether Jellybean is a boy or a girl (I was convinced baby was a she until last night when I started referring to baby as Little Brother…so confused!). Also thinking about my hospital choice. Hoping I don’t regret it.

I am thankful for… Poutine, friends and naps

I am creating…Working on In Threes as well, in yarn left over from Liam’s Gramps. Got the yarn for the next sweater, Elizabeth Zimmerman’s Surprise Baby Jacket

I am going…to find out baby’s sex in 2 weeks!

I am hoping…that my recent boost of energy isn’t temporary. It feels like mini nesting, and it’s awesome. I love getting stuff done around the house

Around the house…Lots done! Most of the boxes have been gone through, lots of items have been given away or sold.

One of my favorite things…My nalgene water bottle, netflix, my mommy friends.

Weight Gain: 19 lbs. Thanks poutine!

Baby in the Produce World:  Baby Centre says baby is as big as a bell pepper
Week18Bellpepper_424x302 Movement/Signs of the Baby: A little bit here and there. Feels more like butterflies and stretching than kicks.

Cravings and Aversions: Still craving poutine like crazy. Not much else. No major aversions, mostly just textures or smells that turn my stomach. Over cooked noodles, ground beef, etc…
Body Changes/Weirdness: Belly is very different this time around. With Liam, I had a torpedo belly, with everything right in front. This time, it’s more like a tire, all the way around my hips and my belly. Otherwise, I’ve noticed some itchiness on my belly, and my breasts have been incredibly sore off and on.
Other Random Babeh/Pregnancy thoughts: I’m trying very hard to stay positive, but I’m finding my previous experiences still have a hold on me. I worry about my hospital choice, about my care choice, about everything really. I hope I can pull off a VBAC.
Other Pictures from the 4th month:

Byron

I’ve been trying to find a way to talk about this for a couple weeks now. I just couldn’t put it to words. Maybe I was afraid that if I wrote about it, it would seem more real. More sudden. I wanted the time to stretch and last forever. Byron, my faithful furry companion for nearly 15 years, had to be put down on Monday and my heart is shattered. I want to tell his story.

At the end of high school, I was going through all the usual dramas and changes that come with closing such a big chapter of my life. I was going into a program where I knew no one, to a university where very few of my friends would be attending. Pat and I were talking about going our separate ways and my parents were facing serious health problems. My sister was planning to move away and my world seemed completely upside down. One day, my mom and I went to visit my Dad’s daughter, Kim. She and I (and especially She and Mum) had always had a really difficult relationship, so it was a big step that she invited us over. We chatted and hung out and it was really nice. When I arrived at her home, she introduced me to the fuzz ball that was sleeping in a small flower pot. She sighed and grumbled about this tiny kitten that was destroying all of her house plants by sleeping on them and squishing them.

She was a bartender/waitress, and one day on her way into work, she saw a group of young boys attempting to kill a tiny kitten. She went hulk rage on them, and rescued the tiny thing that fit into the palm of her hand. She brought the kitten home and he was promptly named “Mo” by her husband (As in “I said NO MORE PETS!”). So, she was looking for a home for wee mo. I loved him, but my Mom was not convinced. Well, Mo was sure. He woke up and chose me. The entire visit he spent in my lap or arms, and when I went to leave, I found him in my purse. My mother gave the kitty one of her looks. He stared back and they obviously communicated for a minute before she said “Alright, bring him home.”

A fluffy kitten, snuggled in a box at Christmas

Byron, 5 months later. Still wee and hiding in a box at Christmas.

We had always had pets while I was growing up, but I had never had my own (aside from Sparky, the one eyed Beta fish that lived forever). I was scared and nervous about this tiny little thing being my own responsibility, but I needn’t be. We took to each other immediately.

He became Byron shortly thereafter. You see, I was an English Lit nerd and wanted something suitably geeky for a name. I thought about it long and hard. I chose the legendary lover poet as inspiration because this cat made people love him. I kid you not, it didn’t matter if you hated cats or were a crazy cat person, Byron would own your heart within the first meeting. He loved people, and was so sweet with everyone.

In University, he was my constant companion. He would snuggle into my arms during all nighters, he would snooze on my books and knock over my empty tea mugs. I discovered during this time that he had an absolute hatred or insane love of muffins. If I had a muffin from the tea cart at school forgotten in my bag, he would find it, drag it out of my bag and DESTROY it. I mean, it would look like an explosive took out the muffin. There would be muffin bits all over for DAYS.

Byron, taking his usual position while I worked on essays at the last minute.

Byron, taking his usual position while I worked on essays at the last minute.

He came with me (despite my father offering quite aggressively that I could leave him with them) when I moved in with my best friends. He befriended their cats and continued to steal the hearts of everyone he came in contact with.

Byron and The Professor

Byron and The Professor, my roommate’s kitty

It was in my first apartment that he went through another one of his lives. Somehow, he managed to swallow a massive darning needle. The next day I discovered this on my way out the door because he was coughing blood between bites of food. Thankfully, they were able to remove the needle and Byron was absolutely fine.

Large darning needle in a pill bottle labeled "Byron's Needle"

He came with me to three apartments and back to my parents home in between each. Every single time he adapted very well until the last apartment (which should have been a sign). My roommate disliked him, he acted out (he was in his teenage rebellion phase). He would slam the kitchen cupboards, would go on hunger strikes and would knock over any glass or mug left unattended.

My vet recommended that perhaps he was a social kitty and was miserable being the only pet for the first time in his life. My roommate had talked about getting a cat, but after months of waiting, I decided to adopt another rescue on my own, and brought Cole into our home. He and Byron were not immediate friends. It took a couple weeks, but eventually, they were your typical big brother and younger brother…fighting, snuggling and playing.

Two long hair cats, snuggling and sleeping on a love seat

Byron and Cole, brothers.

Before I moved in with Pat, I was back at my parents place. It was during this time that Byron lost yet another life. My Dad’s son’s middle child decided to throw a billiards ball at Byron’s head one day before Sunday dinner, giving Byron a bloody nose and a bad concussion. I have never felt such a massive anger towards a child before this moment. The family diffused the situation and I took Byron upstairs to tend to him. This was the second time he had been abused by a small boy, and it broke my heart for him.

When Pat and I moved in together, it was an unspoken rule that the cats would come with me. Pat had never had pets, and so it was a definite adjustment. Within a year, I had manipulated my way into us adding a dog to the mix too.

Byron, Maddie and cole

Byron, Maddie and cole

There we were, our own little family. It stayed this way for 4 years or so before I had Liam. He cuddled with me when I was depressed, anxious, sick or sad. He comforted me when my parents died, always knowing when something was wrong and when I needed him most. He let me cry into his fur while he took his post on my lap, snuggled into the crook of my arm. He was more than a cat to me. I didn’t think I could ever be that person who loved an animal that much, but here I was. He was family.

Keeping me company while I was super sick

Keeping me company while I was super sick

When I was pregnant, it was like I was made of all things awesome for kitties. Cole and Byron would not leave me alone. It was never just one of them, either. It was always both.

Pregnant and covered in kitties

Pregnant and covered in kitties

As you can imagine, I was worried about how Byron would take to a little boy after all of the trauma he had had. Abused animals can be unpredictable, especially around people that remind them of their past abuse. To everyone’s surprise, Byron loved Liam and took to him like none of the other pets did. Cole runs whenever Liam is around. Seriously, if Liam is awake, Cole is no where to be found. Maddie tolerates him, but is too old and grumpy for his shenanigans. Byron on the other hand, would demand love and attention from Liam, even when Liam was too rough or reckless with him.

Liam and Byron

Liam and Byron

So, when we found out I was pregnant a second time, I expected the same kind of kitty magnet. While they both liked snuggles, it wasn’t the same with Byron. He started peeing everywhere but the litter box. He would target Liam’s bed and our laundry. Eventually, he started crapping everywhere too and I started to worry. You see, in all those years together, he had never once peed outside the litter box. Not when injured, not when abused, not when he was lonely and wanted a furrbuddy. My mommy sense was tingling, and it wasn’t good. We took him to the vet after all of the typical behavioral fixes didn’t work (rescue remedy pet drops in their water, pheromone sprays and plug ins, extra litter boxes, cleaning more often, etc…). His blood work came back fine, but the vet found a large malignant mass in his mouth. My heart dropped and I knew it was time. We took a week and a half to digest the news and make our decision. By the end of the week, we noticed he was in pain more frequently, he was starting to have trouble eating. My dear friend was dying, and it was up to us to decide what to do next.

Byron and I, in that final week

Byron and I, in that final week

Saying my goodbyes during his final week

Saying my goodbyes during his final week

I am not one of those people who believe in kitty chemo. I didn’t want  him to suffer for my benefit. I wanted him to be at peace. On Monday the 6th of July, we took him to the vet and said our final goodbyes. As he lay in my lap, right before the procedure, I felt the baby kick rapidly and Byron snuggled up against it. I broke down.

I can’t tell you how hard it is to lose yet another loved one to cancer. I keep expecting to see him on his chair in the kitchen, or to have him crawl up on to his favourite spot on the back of the couch, behind me.

During his last week, his favourite spot

During his last week, his favourite spot

Goodbye dear friend. Thank you for your kindness, your love, your ridiculous antics and your uniqueness. I will miss you so very much.

Review: June Ipsy Glam Bag

Theme: Swim into Beauty

June Ipsy Bag

Bag: A slick looking black bag with coral zipper. Cute, but I find black makeup bags are impossible to keep clean and I prefer something more fun.

The Loot:

IT Cosmetics Brow Power Universal Eyebrow Pencil

I honestly wasn’t sure I was even going to use this one. I have a great brow kit from Elf Cosmetics that has been fantastic for me thus far. Man, was I surprised by how much I adore this pencil. The colour is perfect for me, the application is easy and goes on so well. The spoolie on the end is great for blending and taming. Seriously, this is my new fave brow tool. A major winner.

Smashbox Photofinish Foundation Primer

I have used this primer before and was pleased by the size of the sample in the bag. It’s an ok primer, but honestly, not my favourite. I think because my skin is so dry and so sensitive, I prefer a primer that is more moisturizing or is more creamy. This primer does what it’s supposed to. My foundation glides right on and stays put. That said, it just doesn’t wow me.

Be Fine Cucumber Facial Mask

Facial masks worry me a bit because my skin is so sensitive. That said, I’m a daredevil (or careless, whatever) and will try anything once. This mask was actually really lovely. I didn’t feel dried out, or irritated and my skin felt smooth and soft after using it. Will use it again, which is saying something.

Me wearing the cucumber facial mask

Formula X Power Source Nail Colour

Ok, I have to be honest here. I was not impressed to receive yet another coralish nail polish. Mix it up, people! We want to wear more than blue and coral! Now, focusing on this specific polish. The size of the sample is tiiiiiny. The colour itself is ok. It`s sort of a hot pink version of coral, which is cute for summer. The formula is ok. I needed 3 coats to get full coverage. Thankfully, it dries very quickly so it didn`t take forever. The colour is cute, but overall it`s just an ok polish.

Me wearing the nail polish

tre`StiQue Mini Shadow Crayon

Ugh, the brand name. Moving on, The packaging is sleek and the colour was a great neutral for me. That said, I found it creased and didn`t really want to stay put. I ended up having to use it as a base for my other eyeshadows (Shown in this post with Naked from the Naked Pallet on top). Overall, it`s ok. Good for those last minute `Holy crap, I was supposed to leave 5 minutes ago!`Faces.

Overall:

This was a pretty ok bag. I loved the eyebrow pencil, and I enjoyed trying everything else, but nothing else really won me over.

As you can see, the primer did good things for my pores, my eyebrows look good, my eyeshadow is very neutral and I look tired as hell.

As you can see, the primer did good things for my pores, my eyebrows look good, my eyeshadow is very neutral and I look tired as hell.

The look, in natural lighting

The look, in natural lighting

Trying to show the eyeshadow, looking shifty instead.

Trying to show the eyeshadow, looking shifty instead.