21 weeks | Baby #4

2.26.17 | 21w1d
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Photo thoughts: Objects in mirror appear bigger in real life.
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Size of baby: The kids say he is an endive, old posts say a carrot or a banana. He's had a growth spurt, no matter which food he's become.

The Bump: Big at night, not so much in the morning. Kind of pointy. Belly button almost popped. 

Cravings/Aversions: Digging trail mix this week, Babybel cheese, La Croix, and Cinnamon Toast Crunch at night. 

Ideal meal, plus cheese and trail mix:
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What I’m loving: All of this movement. Food. Thinking of names with Nate and the kids. We have about four solid choices, created from my original list of twenty names. You know I won't be sharing the actual name here once we decide, but possibly I'll share the rejected options;) We aren't there yet, but Nate did seem pretty agreeable to 2-3 of my ideas the other night, which made me incredibly happy. I was expecting him to be 'meh' about them all and I know once we decide, Truman will probably paste it to his forehead so everyone in the world will know this baby's name. He's still so excited, you guys. They all are.
Also, love my new blazer for work!
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What I’m anticipating: The birth still seems like it's a million years away, but I've started thinking about how I will be experiencing the amazing-awful labor and delivery in about five months. This time I want to remain calm and relaxed, and not totally lose it at some point. Each birth has been better with this concept of remaining in control but it's so easy to let anxiety and pain overtake my labors. I mean, I'm all about the epidural, even if my last two haven't been as amazing as my first one. I just want to figure out a way to make my brain conquer the pain so that I don't freak out. My friend let me borrow her Hypnobabies CDs, so I might try those for an option. I always go into labor wondering why I didn't mentally prepare a little bit more. Might as well have a tool for coping with my fourth birth?

Miss anything? Alcohol, running, being fit. But honestly, I'm still feeling grateful and content at this stage of pregnancy and know that it's all so fleeting. It's going so fast. And I really love being pregnant.

At nearly midnight on Friday, after a neighborhood girls' night out.
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Worries? Not really any. 

Differences between pregnancies? Truman's pregnancy had me freaking out about gaining 13 pounds, along with the fact that my OB wanted me to gain more than 30 total. Mission accomplished on that one, since I did gain a whopping 43 pounds with him by the end. We also settled on a name for Truman this week, I remember that like it was yesterday and yet it was seven years ago. T's birthday is this week so I'm already feeling sentimental about my oldest getting so....old, and now reading this post has me all teary yet again. I'm crying a lot lately, actually.

With Cecelia, I had gained 11 pounds but wasn't freaking out about it. My belly button was really close to popping (same as now!) and we had just bought our current home. We hadn't settled on a name and I was gearing up to decorate her nursery. With Porter,  had a ravenous appetite and was worried I'd gained 15 pounds but was only at 11 again. I referred to it being my last pregnancy several times and we had not only settled on his name, but I also painted the nursery already. Woah. Apparently I was an overachiever with my first pregnancy and also my first-last pregnancy ;) 

How I’m feeling: Good! I just weighed myself after those above paragraphs and I believe I'm up ten pounds, which is about right and also shocking it's not more. This week I've been trying to reign in the appetite but Girl Scout cookies and Costco make this ridiculously difficult. I've noticed the changes my body is making this week, basically adding curves all over compared to my non-pregs state. I mean, all of a sudden I have a butt and thighs and boobs, and clothes fit differently. This is expected and I'm not complaining, it's always just an adjustment to my new lovely lady lumps;) 

I'm doing really well with my energy levels during the day but will hit a major slump as soon as I sit on the couch in the evenings. I think combining the new job, along with the house renovations and this pregnancy makes it seem like time is FLYING BY and also gives me more energy to handle all of these transitions. For now. I am anticipating hitting the wall in a few more weeks, I'm guessing.

Sleep: Good, but if I get woken up anytime after 4 am, I'm up for the day. I cannot shut off my brain after 4am even though I'm exhausted. This happens about 1-2 times per week when PORTER decides he needs me to come and cover him up in the crib. Or if he lost a sock. Or if he dropped Duckie. I greatly enjoy going to bed at 9pm those nights, and sometimes I have to nap but not usually. 

Movement: THE BEST. So much movement, it's my favorite. I might be feeling some hiccups every now and then, too.

Boy or Girl: BOY! 

Milestones: Over half-way? A good start on name ideas? Buying a bigger bra?

Best Moment of the Week: Truman is filling out his 'star student' poster, since his birthday is this upcoming Wednesday. The number of times this child mentions his baby brother in utero seriously tugs as my heart daily. Also, we caved at bought the digital copy of Moana this morning, and I made chocolate chip pancakes to create an awesome Sunday morning. I've cleaned the house, we have grocery shopped, and we believe weekends are just unbeatable. Even when it does snow a few days after being 70 degrees. 

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Sibling Talk: Porter --> "Let me see that baby. (I lift up my shirt). Hi, baby! You swimming? I'm a baby, too. I live in your tummy, too. Mommy has a baby in there, daddy has a baby in there, I have a baby in there...." Yeah, he's getting it but not quite. 

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Fun week!

20 weeks | Baby #4

2.19.17 | 20w1d

Photo thoughts: The bump looks small to me here. Henry looks comfy. I wonder how long I can wear non-maternity joggers? And hello, sunshine!
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Size of baby: A banana! And we know he is 13 oz according to the ultrasound, and measured 6 days ahead for overall size. This means nothing and I will not tell myself I'll go early this time...for now.

The Bump: Still fluctuating by the hour, sometimes seemingly small and others big. Belly button holding on for dear life but nearing outie status.

Cravings/Aversions: No aversions whatsoever. I'm loving all foods, some healthy and some really unhealthy. This week I made baked oatmeal and granola, and rediscovered my love for cucumbers with hummus. But also burgers, fries, Jimmy Johns, and cookies completely hit the spot throughout the week. Food tastes so amazing lately and I am a never-ending pit, it's hard to show any willpower.

What I’m loving: This sweet spot of pregnancy. Knowing baby is healthy. Knowing he is a boy. Feeling movement and feeling connected to this little guy. Plus, it's been abnormally warm here, with temps in the 60s for the past few days. Sunshine and warmth and fresh air will always make for the best days around here. I wish it would stick around until 'real spring' comes but alas, we know better. It's only February, after all.

What I’m anticipating: Now that the ultrasound is over and went extremely well, I don't have a huge event hanging over my head. It's time to look at the last half of this pregnancy and try to embrace it the best I can, since I have a feeling it's going to fly by....until the last few weeks when time stands still. ;) Non-pregnancy related, we met with the architect this week and have some plans to consider for our house addition. So we are anticipating major changes with our house, pinning up a storm, and trying to channel my energy into cleaning out the attic for good. The sketches look awesome and we are pumped to move forward with the house growth.

Miss anything? With the warmer weather, lots of runners have been jogging past our house and I'm eager to get back to my favorite hobby. I walked four times this week and notice that I get pretty short of breath if I walk quickly. Henry was also huffing and puffing on our latest excursion...two old bags trying to get active.

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Worries? Nope, feeling immense relief after the ultrasound. 

Differences between pregnancies? Truman's pregnancy, Cecelia's pregnancy, and Porter's pregnancy all seem pretty similar to this one in different ways. I'd just started to feel pressure down there with Porter and was hungry all of the time, and headed to the ultrasound right after writing my 20 week post. With Truman and Cecelia we hadn't had our ultrasound yet and I was feeling pretty good overall. My belly was still crazy small with Truman but it's pretty similar for the other three pregnancies at this point. 

One, two, three, and four at twenty weeks: My how my hair has changed. 
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How I’m feeling: Pregnant and happy. 

Sleep: I can go to bed before 9pm most nights and still feel tired in the mornings, but I am sleeping well and without complaint.

Movement: So much, it's the best. He was sleeping during the ultrasound at first, then the tech tried to get him to move around by bumping him with her wand. That made him mad and he started to do backflips in there for the rest of the time. She commented that he's kicking me in the cervix a whole lot and he likes to lay sideways, across my belly. I'm still loving all of this movement because it cannot be ignored, and if I forget I'm pregnant for a second he will remind me with his kicks.

Boy or Girl: BOY! We were shocked at first since everyone thought this was a girl. It didn't take long to feel like this is the way our family is meant to be, with two little boys at the end of the bunch. It seems like we know a lot of families with three boys and I think I'm being initiated into a special club of #boymoms. The noise, the dirt, the trucks and trains.....and the mother-son bond that is indescribable. Bring it on, again!

So who do you think he looks like? ;)

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Milestones: Halfway through this pregnancy, big ultrasound completed. Also, had someone ask me if I'm pregnant when they didn't already know the answer. That's always a fun milestone. Pretty big week, indeed!

Best Moment of the Week: The ultrasound, of course. Comparing this one with a perinatologist to our 'usual' tech from the past, it wasn't all that different, honestly. They did do a vaginal portion of the ultrasound to really look at my cervix and placenta, but time-wise it wasn't that much longer or more detailed than before. The nice part was having the OB come in immediately after to give us our normal results, when usually it would take a day or so for my own OB to call and give me that report. The tech focused on the brain and heart but talked throughout the exam, so we weren't just sitting in silence wondering how everything looked. Modern technology is certainly amazing and Nate and I both loved getting this detailed look at our boy.

Sweetest babe, sucking his thumb (or at least, trying to)
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Sibling Talk: Lots of comments from Truman about how much he loves his baby brother, and discussion about names. Cecelia has also come up to me and kissed my belly, showing her love for this baby. Porter mentioned teaching him to 'play trains' and has seemed extra snuggly this week, declaring that 'I'm still little,' and 'you are my best friend, Mama.' I'll take those hugs and sweet words any day and am happy to cuddle him for reassurance. I think he gets the idea of a new baby more than we initially thought and I don't want Porter to feel lost in the shuffle of four kids. I guess moms always feel like this before having another baby---concerned that the current 'baby' won't adjust well to the new role of big sibling. Whenever I start to worry about that, I remind myself that Porter is one-of-a-kind and a tough little dude. I don't think it's possible to forget about him as he's talking a mile a minute and making others laugh non-stop. Ah, the transition of a growing family, with four individual personalities needing attention and love. We are up for the challenge!

A note from Truman, on the back of the note I sent to school. Note the little baby curled up at the bottom. I mean, come on!
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It's A...






Three boys and a girl.

Nate has his foursome in golf. Cecelia and I can remain the queens. We are so happy.

And this guy is 100% excited, not disappointed in the slightest.

I haven't uploaded pictures from the ultrasound yet, but it couldn't have gone better. Baby boy looked beautifully normal, measuring right on track (actually six days ahead, but who is counting?). He was sucking his thumb and moving around but 'very cooperative' as per our ultrasound tech. He was spread eagle and I spotted his 'goods' before the tech could confirm this little boy is indeed, a proud boy.

The best part was having the MD come in at the end to say, 'Your baby is growing perfectly and there are absolutely no signs of birth defects or concerns.' We are so thankful, it's hard to even describe.

After working all morning, then going to the ultrasound, then meeting with our architect to talk about the addition, then me going BACK to work, then the gender reveal, then going out to dinner, and then Nate returning to work late tonight....it's been a heck of a day.

Porter has been talking about naming his brother 'Sir Handel, Skarloey, or Percy.' Thomas and Friends fans will understand. Truman suggested 'Noah' and Cecelia votes for 'Peas.' They are all hoping this boy loves trains as much as Porter and they can't wait to tell their friends the news at school tomorrow. Both of their teachers emailed me tonight to say Truman and Cecelia were SO excited today, and their classes can't wait to hear all about the baby. I mean, really, can we get more pumped around here?

More to come, I am just exhausted in the best way possible.

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I am starting a very basic, boring You Tube channel. Here is the video from the reveal, the stinking pinata did not behave how I hoped but it did the job, I suppose.

Building My Maternity, Office Wardrobe

When I accepted my promotion at work, I knew I'd need more than two outfits for this new job in the office. Gone are the days when I could wear three pairs of khaki pants with three different polos while treating patients as a Physical Therapist. And thank goodness for that! Realistically, I haven't donned the classic PT outfit of khakis and a polo for many years, but they still a wardrobe staple for many of my kind. It's a culture, I think. :)

To make matters more exciting, not only do I need an office wardrobe but it needs to be a maternity version right now. Maternity clothes are both awesome and awful, if you ask me. It's painful to spend money on items that you know are just temporary, since I much prefer to invest in nicer pieces that will last me 'forever'. Pretty sure that the full panel work pants I just bought will last me a few months, if I'm lucky, and the 'temporary' part of this new wardrobe is just ironic.

I did save most of my maternity clothes from the first three rounds My Bump Life, and even splurged on several newer pieces at the end of Porter's pregnancy. Having those three-year-old items to pull from are key, but some of the seven-year-old stuff from Truman's pregnancy should probably be retired for good. Many of the older clothes from 2009/2010 are for winter months, much of the 212-2014 stuff is for spring and summer....thus the need to plump up my maternity wear yet again, this time with intentions of looking professional in the office.

Let the games begin!

I've been rocking my desk job for three weeks now and I really enjoy my (brief) hours spent as Rehab Supervisor. It's all still new and challenging and exciting, and I'm finding myself prepping lunches and outfits the night before to save time in the morning. For the past three weeks, I've sort of struggled to find the 'right' outfit to wear to work. But it's not because I don't have anything to wear, since I did spend a lot of my Christmas cash on maternity clothes. I struggle because I'm not always sure how to pair the items together, how to accessorize, how to select the right shoe, and how to stay warm in a somewhat chilly building for five hours during our brutal Wisconsin winter. Basically, I just want to wear flats without socks but it's totally unrealistic in February!

I've been wanting to take pictures of my various office outfits to create a catalog of options, a visual for me when I'm selecting what to wear each night. Perhaps it could be helpful for some of you out there who are feeling less than inspired with your office attire. But mostly, I just want feedback on brown versus black boots, and which scarves look better than others. Also, any major NO WAY outfits? Any ultimate favorites?

Outfit 1 | A and B [Bling neckline top]

Top: A Pea in the Pod | Pants: Motherhood | Booties: from my last Stitch Fix, by Steve Madden.

Thoughts: I love the top for the comfortable, flowy fit and for it's bling neckline (Cecelia is obsessed). Excellent material, super stretchy and good length. I like these pants enough, although I do feel a little strange in ankle length pants because 'high waters' are exactly the look I've tried to avoid my whole life, being 5'10". And the black ankle boots are a go-to for the office lately. I think I like the red with the black best, but I've worn both of these outfits in the past three weeks. Not sure what else to pair the gray pants with other than a black top.

Outfit 2 | A and B [favorite polka dots and red pants]

Top: Motherhood, buy two sweaters get third free (!) | Cardigan: Motherhood, same deal | Bottoms: Motherhood | Shoes: Yosi Samra flats that you can't even see here, boo.

Thoughts: Obsessed with this sweater. Wanted to get it in a medium but the last one they had was snagged, so I got the small and am not hyper sensitive to it's length. I think this could work postpartum as well. Because it's short sleeved, I usually wear the cardigan for warmth. I love all Mr. Roger's cardigans, they are a weakness of mine. Bought the red pants to specifically go with this polka dot sweater, not going to lie. And I like I like the ankle length with flats best, but that will have to wait until April-ish so my skin doesn't get frost bite.

Outfit 3 | A and B [bright purple top that I love]
Top: Motherhood, circa 2014 | Long necklace: Loft, circa 2013 | Cardigan: Motherhood, circa 2014 | Pants: A Pea in the Pod, current! | Shoes: Steve Madden/Stitch Fix

Thoughts: I forgot about this purple top but I really love it, it's long and simple and a nice color. The cardigan feels a little dressier and I'm always a fan of a long necklace. Now, the pants? These are my new favorite maternity pants ever. They are expensive and I really hesitated to buy them because of the $88 price tag. They are form fitting and I just know I will grow out of them before the end of this pregnancy. The sales lady assured me 'that will only happen if you gain more than 30 pounds.' Um, duh!!! That's not a problem! But the material is soft as butter, almost like yoga pants but better. There are pockets and rivets, they are long, full panel, and seriously so comfy I had to get them. And I wear them twice a week or so, because you better believe I will get my money's worth now before my butt gets too big! Then I'll cry because I will miss them, seriously.

Outfit 4 | A and B [Stitch Fix tops that still work]
Cardigan: last Stitch Fix, Skies are Blue | Gray leggings: Old Navy (not maternity, still love) | Tank: Target, probably Liz Lange Maternity, circa 2012 | Brown riding boots: Corso Como from Zappos, 2011 | Scarf: Stitch Fix, Octavia

Thoughts: I love cardigans, long tanks, long necklaces, and/or scarves. I also try to wear my brown tall boots more often because I feel like it's so easy to wear all black pants and shoes in the office. It's like bucking the trend wearing something other than black! I think I like the scarf better than the long necklace option here, just to add more color. I know leggings aren't always the most professional option for an office job, but these are SO comfy, are really thick, and as long as my butt is covered I think it's okay. Also with a tall boot, I don't think you can even see much of the leggings to feel offended, but since they aren't maternity I probably won't be wearing them much longer anyway.

Outfit 5: A and B [Gray, so much gray in my closet]
Top: Stitch Fix, Market and Spruce | Scarf: Christmas gift from Lois, not sure store | Pants: favorite ones from Pea in the Pod | Black riding boots: Corso Como again, circa 2011, can't find online anymore

Thoughts: I really love this top, even non-maternity, and think it's nice for the office. I will probably wear a cardigan over it (I did this later in the shoot) for warmth, and the scarf helps with that, too. Kind of nice that I can wear so many of my Stitch Fix tops while pregnant, at least for now! It's a little plain without the scarf and without a cardigan but it's nice enough. Could also do a necklace and I am also a fan of brown shoes with a gray top...just not always with black pants (my brown boots and booties aren't the right shade to wear with black pants, IMO).

Outfit 6 | A and B [Favorite tunic-slash-dress]
Tunic: Motherhood, circa 2011 | Leggings: Old Navy | Scarf: Stitch Fix | Boots (both a brown and black in first photo): Corso Como, circa 2011

Thoughts: Do you like the black or brown boots better with the gray leggings? Once I add the navy scarf, it needs to be brown boots, right? Love this tunic, but why is everything I own 3/4 sleeves and therefore a little chilly in the office?? This is one of my favorite colors of all times, the purple-pink shade frequents my closet.

Outfit 7 | A and B [ Bright colors, so many scarves ]
Top: Aspire at REI, circa 2015 | Scarves: no idea, super old | Pants: Pea in the pod | Booties: Stitch Fix, Steve Madden

Thoughts: This is one of my favorite tops, I've had it for awhile and it's definitely not maternity. I just like the color and the drape, and it was one of my go-to choices for working with patients, too. I think wearing a scarf and booties make the outfit a little dressier, perhaps. Which scarf is better? I have so many freaking scarves...

Outfit 8 | A and B [Old dress, some color in the scarf, pushing for brown shoes]
Gray dress: Motherhood, circa 2010 | Scarf: Target, circa 2013 | Gray leggings: Mossimo at Target, circa 2012 | Brown booties: Chinese Laundry, no longer online, circa 2015 | Brown tall boots: Corso Como, 2011

Thoughts: So booties or riding boots? This was the only time I pulled my brown cuffed ankle boots for these photos but I do like to wear them to work, since they are comfortable and a little different. It's a shame I didn't try them on more often for you because I do want to know which outfits will look nice with the brown shorties. Is there too much gray with the leggings and dress? I just tried to make brown work here but maybe black leggings and boots make more sense. I do like my scarf for color and because without it, the dress feels depressing to me. I do want to wear more dresses to work, my boss only wears dresses or skirts. I think dresses are pretty maternity friendly, not so much skirts.

Outfit 9 | A and B [previous favorite maternity dress]
Dress: Motherhood, circa 2014 | Cardigan: Motherhood, circa 2014 | Leggings: Motherhood, circa 2014 | Booties: Stitch Fix, Steve Madden

Thoughts: This has been one of my favorite striped dresses, although I'm not feeling super cute in it this time around. Something about the neckline makes me feel a little wider than I like (or maybe it's the horizontal stripes), but it's still a cute dress and I'll for sure wear it. I'll pair it with the cardigan for now, maybe even with tall boots instead of booties? Would a colored cardigan look strange? I NEED COLOR!

Outfit 10 [Oldest dress tries to make a comeback]
Dress: Motherhood, circa 2009 (!) | Necklace: Stitch Fix, Romolo brand | Leggings: Motherhood, 2014 | Black riding boots: Corso Como, 2011

Thoughts: I want to like this dress, but the tight turtle neck kills me. I mean, it seems very old school to me, because I know that it's eight years old. But it is pretty modest and office appropriate, I guess. Thoughts? Long necklace makes it more modern? Can you tell I'm suffocating in the turtle neck? Why can't it be a cowl neck instead? I turned to the side to prove I really am pregnant;)

Outfit 11 | A, B, and C [A favorite top three ways]
Striped top: Motherhood, 2014 | Pink cardigan: Loft, 2013 | Blue cardigan: Stitch Fix, 41Hawthorn | Leggings: Motherhood, circa 2014 | Black riding boots: Corso Como, 2011 | NecklaceStitch Fix, Romolo brand

Thoughts: I forgot how much I like this striped top, even though I can't find the black belt thing that ties around the waist. It's a nice length and flattering, but feels like I need to add a cardigan or something. Preferred color? Long necklace, or no?

Outfits 12 and 13 | [Different Stitch Fix tops, all similar]
Blue Shirt: Stitch Fix, Market and Spruce | Maroon shirt: Stitch Fix, 41 Hawthorn | Pants: favorite ones from Pea in the Pod | Black riding boots: Corso Como, 2011

Thoughts: I haven't worn either of these tops lately but I think they will work nicely in the office! Stitch Fix really nailed my style with several 'button tab' sleeved shirts, huh?

Outfits 14 and 15 | [More Stitch Fix tops/sweaters]
Poncho sweater: Stitch Fix, RD Style | Striped cardigan sweater: Stitch Fix, Mystree | Pants: favorite ones from Pea in the Pod | Black riding boots: Corso Como, 2011 | NecklaceStitch Fix, Romolo brand

Thoughts: I've worn the poncho to work once, and am wearing the striped sweater tomorrow, I've decided. I always get a lot of compliments on the striped one and it's pretty cozy but still put together enough with tall boots, I think.

Outfits 16 and 17 | [Older Motherhood tops, sleeveless editions]
Sleeveless tops: Both Motherhood or Pea in the Pod from 2014 | Pants: favorite ones from Pea in the Pod | Black riding boots: Corso Como, 2011

Thoughts: I don't think I can do these sleeveless tops much. I've always loved the green one but it's really short once my belly gets bigger. The purple one used to be my favorite but for some reason it's really tight in my arm pits and therefore impossible. Options in a pinch, I guess.

Outfits 18 and 19 | [Seriously, so much gray in my closet]
Gray cowl neck: Pink Blush | Scarf: Itsy Ritzy | Blue cardigan: Stitch Fix, 41 Hawthorn | Pants: favorite ones from Pea in the Pod | Black riding boots: Corso Como, 2011 | NecklaceStitch Fix, Romolo brand

Thoughts: My sister--in-law got me the gray top from Pink Blush and it's seriously the most comfortable material! I wear it a lot, just haven't donned it in the office yet. Then I was playing around with that other gray top by Stitch Fix, trying to dress it up with a cardigan and scarf. This type of outfit could be my wardrobe staple, really.

Outfits 20 and 21 | [I love royal blue]
Striped top: Liz Lange Maternity, 2014 | Solid top: I.N.C. at Macy's, 2013 | Pants: favorite ones from Pea in the Pod | Black booties: from my last Stitch Fix, by Steve Madden | NecklaceStitch Fix, Romolo brand

Thoughts: I forgot how much I love the striped top because of it's length. And then there's the solid top, one that isn't maternity but I've worn it a TON over the years. I almost went back and bought it in other colors and I always wish I would have done just that---the cut is really nice and of course, the length! It has pockets and for now I'm sure I could wear it (or both tops, really) with a cardigan. Wouldn't a black blazer look nice? I want one, it's on my 'must find' list but I think I need to try them on, lest I look too formal and not trendy enough. Where might one find the perfect blazer for the office? Not too stiff or suit-like, maybe cotton?

Outfit 22 | [Too casual?]

Gray tee shirt top: Amazon | Sweater vest: Lands End | NecklaceStitch Fix, Romolo brand | Leggings: Old Navy | Boots: Corso Como

Thoughts: I want to love this sweater vest and want to make it work. My mom got it for me for Christmas and it's very much my style. I'm struggling to pair it with the correct top and bottom though. I think that maybe I need a navy blue shirt to wear under it, then I can go with these gray leggings? Black doesn't work. I don't have a white shirt. Is it too casual for the office? It's warm and cute! Maybe best for my days at home, though.

Summary: I think I need a blazer or two. Any top favorites? Any suggestions for accessorizing/shoes? Do I need more than a pair of black and brown tall boots and booties? Office maternity wear, here I come.

19 weeks | Baby #4

2.13.17 | 19w2d

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Photo thoughts: Morning photo in the mirror means a glowing couch, really illuminating my belly. This is the smallest it will be today, as it grows by the hour. 

Size of baby: A mango! 

The Bump: Both big and small, heavier at night and super high. I love this stage of the bump so much and can't wrap my head around the fact that it's going to be so.much.bigger so soon.

Cravings/Aversions: don't believe in aversions. I only believe in eating everything, all of the time. Food is the best and my appetite both disgusts me and is the best part of the day. I realize that my stomach is not actually 'hungry' and it's mostly my head telling me I need to eat but I don't even care. We made granola this week, something we haven't had in ages but I love it. Mostly into salt but sugar will do in a pinch.

What I’m loving: Being pregnant. Feeling good. Nearing the halfway point. Lots to love;)

What I’m anticipating: The big ultrasound, in three days!!! Number one: we want this baby to be healthy and having the more detailed perinatologist appointment will be great for really seeing this baby. Number two: we are excited to find out if this is a baby sister or brother for our kiddos. Truman has a daily countdown going and will tell me multiple times per day, 'Mom! Only X more days until we know if this is a boy or a girl.' It's so exciting, you guys.

Miss anything? I do miss wine really badly this time of year. I miss the idea of running and being in shape but the wine trumps all right now.

Worries? Issues in the ultrasound, enough said. 

Differences between pregnancies? It seems like this current pregnancy is most similar to Porter's pregnancy: hating the winter, excited to find out the sex, always starving. With Cecelia, I don't think I was as ravenous as I am right now. And with Truman? I mean, seriously. Give me a break with that 'bump' and the fact that I painted the entire nursery in one day. I won't be painting any nursery at all this time around, not even sure where the baby will sleep for the first few months of life, since our house might be under major construction. That is certainly a difference this time versus all of the other times, but I'm really okay with it! Not feeling much creative energy exploding from my body right now anyway. 

How I’m feeling: Good, but I got hit with the kids' colds this week. Itchy eyes, runny nose, sneezing (which officially makes me pee in my pants a little, if forceful), sore throat---it's always worse to be sick when pregnant. My energy level took a big hit this week but I somehow managed to take a 30 minute walk four times, too. Also, I've noticed that I feel a lot of pressure 'down there' if I'm standing for a long time. Like I can image my cervix holding down fort with a growing baby right above, and if I sit down it feels better. Seems pretty early to feel the pressure of the (tiny) baby. 

Sleep: Yes, please. Not the greatest when I'm congested but whatever. Currently fighting off a nap as I type this.

Movement: So much! Stronger kicks, too, especially in the evenings, after eating, or when I'm sitting down. Love it.

Boy or Girl: I have to remind myself why I think this is a girl, other than the fact that Truman wants a sister so badly. But with the bleeding that happened at the exact same time as Cecelia's pregnancy, and the super early conception date, it just HAS to be a girl, right? Or not. It could easily be a boy. Nate and I both admitted we kind of want a girl, but we think it's a boy. And if so, having three boys and a girl will be absolutely perfect for our family, there will be no sadness here (can't say the same for Truman but he will live). THREE MORE DAYS until we find out. And seriously, I love finding out at the ultrasound so, so much. 

Milestones: Both Truman and Cecelia felt the baby kick this week! Watching the looks on their faces was priceless. Definitely the best moments of the week. Now we just need to have Nate feel the baby and we will be set (pretty sure Porter won't care either way).

Best Moment of the Week: See above. Also, I had my regular 18 week OB appointment this week. Blood pressure is good, I've gained 7 pounds total (surprised it's not more) which is pretty much on par for my other pregnancies. I tend to gain the most in the second trimester and then the third trimester varies (tons more with Truman, less with Cecelia, the least with Porter). 

She heard the heartbeat on doppler and listened for a long time, rate was 154, she guessed girl for the sex. We even heard the baby kick the doppler and moving around. I asked my OB if she had all four of her kids before the age of 35, since she seemed so anti-AMA last time. Shockingly enough, she had the last two at age 35 and 37, and she wanted a fifth before age 39 as her 'cut off'. Come on, doc, why were you so negative with me, then?

She's very excited for the ultrasound and it was a much more positive appointment in general. We agreed that I'm in good health, and this baby was meant to be. I forgot how much I love OB appointments. 

Sibling Talk: Much discussion about the sex of this baby, plenty of kisses to my belly, and Truman has officially announced to everyone at school that we will find out the sex on February 16th. I'm sure everyone has written it on their calendars. 

Almost half baked and the next time I post about the pregnancy, I'll share our gender reveal!

18 weeks | Baby #4

2.6.17 | 18w1d
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Photo thoughts: Maternity pants still fit me oddly but definitely tighter. Lots of my tops are already too short and therefore maddening, this one isn't horrible though. 

Size of baby: Current phone app tells us I'm growing an artichoke, past posts mention a bell pepper and sweet potato. Pretty big!

The Bump: Large, in charge, high, fluctuates by the hour. Many times I'll catch a glimpse of myself in the mirror an think, 'I'm seriously really pregnant now.' And yet, I know it's going to grow at record speeds through the end.

Before bed, feeling very pregs.
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Cravings/Aversions: Appetite like woah, will power to eat normal portion sizes dangerously low. This was the week I realized I'm going to gain a very respectable amount of weight during pregnancy, I can start to feel it, and I do.not.care. At least for now, I plan to live it up and feed this growing babe! I'm sure a few more weeks of overindulgence will have me singing a different tune. I wanted buffalo chicken ranch dip today for the Super Bowl and HAD to make it. I don't even like spicy food but this hit the spot. Going to town on Cinnamon Toast Crunch cereal, too, and *had* to make cinnamon rolls for breakfast on Saturday morning. Food is so delicious.

What I'm loving: This sweet spot of pregnancy. I get really annoying during the second trimester because I feel good and I'm rather emotional and mostly happy, so I'll leave it at this: thankful to be doing this all over again. 

What I'm anticipating the most: February 16th--anatomy scan day! Also, I have a regular OB appointment this week. 

Miss anything? Booze and running, but what else is new?

Worries: I'm going with my positive mindset and not letting many worries creep into my head right now. But there's always an underlying sense of worry about the baby's health and then I remembered the panic of having a newborn, when I check to see if he/she is breathing and try not to imagine horrible things happening on the other side of the womb. Yeah, let's not think about any of that right now, right?

Differences between pregnancies: As noted in Porter's pregnancy at this time, I found my B-cup bras and never looked back. This time I have been wondering where they are because I need them, but I'm pretty sure I donated them to Goodwill during my fit of purging that happened over the last year. I think I still have some of my C and D cuppers ready for the next few weeks though. Is it odd that my boobs increase FOUR cup sizes during pregnancy, then with nursing they stay pretty large and in charge? I'll admit this is one of my favorite parts of being pregnant: pretending that I got a boob job, even if just temporarily. 

I had a major growth spurt with Porter around now, too, and was starving all of the time. Sounds super familiar, and I still love that these last two pregnancies are identical down to the due date---I was complaining about the winter three years ago and have found myself on repeat with that thought this week, too.

With Cecelia's pregnancy, I was feeling daily movement and worried if I didn't feel her move in the evenings. I'd say that is the same now, because this child seems to be super active already. I haven't busted out my doppler in weeks and weeks though, and I think my mental state is a lot better this fourth time around compared to being pregnant after my loss. 

Then with Truman's pregnancy, I was just starting to wear a Be Band to keep my regular jeans from hurting my 'belly' too much. Laughable, I know, it's just my favorite to read these first-time posts from my perspective nearly seven years later! I was feeling movement though, and of course was still (annoyingly) running. Strange to think I was still working full time back then and I can barely remember what I actually DID with my free time! Sometimes Nate and I reminisce about our newlywed years, pre-kids, but we come up blank with memories since it seems like a different lifetime. Can't wait to re-read much of my blog as we go along this pregnancy, really happy I have been blogging for nearly TEN years now. Ten, you guys. I am officially geriatric in blogging and also pregnancy ;)

How I'm feeling: Energetic, thankful, busy at my new job, perplexed by how fast time is flying. I was able to walk outside with Henry or on the treadmill three times last week which felt like an accomplishment. 

Sleep: Excellent. I took a two hour nap on the couch with Cecelia today, and haven't done that in....months? Needed it.

Movement: A lot in the evenings and when sitting down. I tried to have Cecelia feel some kicks this week but the baby stopped each time I put her hand on me. Don't be shy, little one! 

Boy or Girl: Still think it's a girl but I've been known to be very wrong before. I did add to my secret name list on my phone, both for boys and girls, which makes me excited to find out and move forward with that whole process. I've decided that Nate and I will find out in the ultrasound room on 2/16, then after school and after a work meeting for me, we will tell the kids later that night. I plan to use a Pinterest idea to tell the kids: a pull string piƱata full of either pink or blue confetti. I decorated an old white paper lantern and then we did a trial run with confetti being pulled out of the lantern....still needs some work, but should be cute if I can conquer the physics of confetti falling out of a lantern in a 'pretty' way.

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Milestones: Consistent and reassuring movement? Not any huge milestones this week, I guess. 

Best moment of the week: Unrelated to being pregnant, Porter is now telling me, 'You are my best, best friend. I love you. You are my biggest hero.' He's been giving me a lot of cuddles lately and asks me to hold him, or carry him a few times a day. I'm not sure if he can sense that things are changing, or maybe he's adjusting to my new job, but it's pretty sweet. 

Least favorite moment was when Truman was sick and home from school from Monday through Thursday. He had a fever on Monday and Tuesday, then he was just so fatigued and couldn't sit up on Wednesday and Thursday. Finally by Friday, I convinced him that he had to try and go to school, which was a good move---he did great. But those four days with him at home, me shuffling my work schedule the best I could, and relying heavily on my in-laws to 'watch' Truman as he laid on the couch and napped wasn't fun. This time of year can be the worst, and I think every year we all get sick around this time with various bugs (fevers, stomach bugs, sore throats, etc.) 

Also, Truman is a total baby pusher and told me that I will probably have ANOTHER baby in 2019. Because, you know, four kids is not enough since this current baby will grow up and won't be a baby forever. He tells me he LOVES babies and needs to have one at all times. Sorry buddy, this is it for me and then you can grow up and have your own babies! Also, have a ball with the hundreds of baby dolls in the basement. 

Here's to a healthy week! Cannot believe I'm getting close to the halfway point of this pregnancy. 

18 weeks: 

Round one | Round two | Round three
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