Pregnancy: 30 Weeks (and My Baby Shower!)


I’m officially in my thirties! Weeks, that is, not years. I still get to be 28 until May, while Aaron really is turning 30 in April.

According to my pregnancy app, our baby is about the size of a cantaloupe this week, measuring nearly 17 inches long and weighing about 3.5 pounds. I’m up 2.2 pounds from last week’s at-home weigh-in, yet down 2.3 pounds from the weight I recorded at last week’s doctor visit. Let’s just say I’m still up 23 pounds then, huh? Since our doctor visits have now increased to every other week, I’ll probably just go by those official weigh-ins from now on.

I finally had to buy bigger underwear this week, which I was really dreading because what kind of underwear do pregnant ladies even wear? I Googled something like “best pregnant underwear” and found message boards where many women recommended simply sizing up in your preferred style of Victoria’s Secret PINK underwear — particularly anything low-rise to accommodate the belly. I looked at a lot of other options first and found that it was really difficult to find wide, stretchy waistbands and comfy leg openings, but Victoria’s Secret nailed it. Huzzah!

I also used a lululemon gift card I’ve been hoarding for two years to buy a bigger size of my beloved Speed shorts. I tried some other styles while I was in the store, but found nothing else I liked better. So now I own three sizes of the same black running shorts, which is not weird at all, right?

Once again, I made it to the gym four times! I find myself scaling back on the resistance more often while using the adaptive motion trainer, since it seems to take less effort to get my heart rate going these days. I also get really sweaty even if it feels like I’m not working very hard. Thank goodness I’m not pregnant in the summer! I’d be a total mess.

I also got my hair cut this week, which turned out to be more of a dramatic chop than I intended, but I’m getting used to it. You’re about to see plenty of pictures of it!

Now, on to the event I’d been looking forward to for so long: my baby shower!

My mom, mother-in-law Greta, and lifelong friend Gillian spent months planning the shower, and it turned out so beautifully. I didn’t take any photos, as I was busy mingling with about 15 of my favorite ladies, so I don’t have every lovely detail to share, but here’s what I do have thanks to photos from Greta’s phone and some photos Aaron took at the end.


Greta hosted the shower at the community cabana in her neighborhood, and Gillian transformed the space with gorgeous flowers in pretty glass milk bottles and fun paper poofs all over the place. Gillian also put together little favors of different shades of pink nail polish, and Greta made sure we had my very favorite cake: the white-chocolate raspberry flavor from Nothing Bundt Cakes!


I don’t have any photos of the food and drinks, but my mom coordinated a wonderful spread of kale salad, a fruit and cheese platter, and Mediterranean tapas (like prosciutto, mozzarella balls, roasted red peppers, etc.) with crusty bread. She also made sure there was plenty of wine on hand for the drinking ladies, and lemonade for me. 🙂

After everyone dug into the food and chatted for a bit, we played a fun game where everyone tried to match each person to her baby photo. I wound up winning, getting all but two correct. I had an unfair advantage since I was one of the few women who knew all the other women quite well, but hey, it was my shower. 🙂 I won a bottle of champagne, which I shall hoard and enjoy in a few months.

Next, we played a Price-is-Right style game where everyone tried to guess the total cost of several baby items. I didn’t play this one, and instead acted as a model. This angle really shows how crazy-big my belly is — eeeee!!


The correct answer was $37 and change, and my friend Amy won with her amazing guess of $36!


Finally, Aaron joined the party just in time to help open gifts, which was perfect because I was so overwhelmed by all of them.


I wanted to give adequate attention to each gift, but also open them fairly quickly so people wouldn’t get bored. We shared duties to keep things moving: I would read the card while Aaron started opening the corresponding gift, and it worked out really well. I also loved having Aaron there because the gifts are for our whole little family to enjoy, not just me!

There are about a million photos of us making crazy expressions while opening gifts, but here are just a few.


I did not know tiny baby bracelets were a thing! This gorgeous one from Greta is more of a keepsake than something she’ll actually wear, but it’s so darn cute.


We got so many precious little outfits and snuggly animals and blankies.


There were lots of oohs and ahhs from the group. 🙂


And finally, my mom made me cry with the stunning handmade quilt she put together for her first grandchild. ❤


She started working on it right when we found out for sure we were having a girl. So pretty, and so very special.

Thank you so much again to my mom, Greta, and Gillian for making my shower such an amazing and memorable experience! I couldn’t have asked for a better group of ladies to celebrate with, and they all brought so much love for our baby. 


We’re more excited than ever to meet her in just a few months.


Side note: I was sooo comfortable in my dress. I bought it from Nordstrom, but some sizes and colors are available on Amazon for less. I ordered and returned a LOT of different dresses before I found this one that just worked. I always thought pregnant women were just effortlessly adorable with their cute baby bumps, but in my experience, it’s been tough to find the right fit for all my new curves. Don’t be surprised to see me in this dress again… and again… for anything else I need to look nice for.

We have our next doctor appointment and ultrasound tomorrow, and we’re so excited to see our baby again. Fingers crossed that all is well and she’s not getting too big in there. I’ll report back next week!

Pregnancy: Week 29


This photo is from our babymoon in snowy Leavenworth last weekend, since we take my weekly photo at the beginning of each week of pregnancy. It’s actually been really warm at home — in the 50s! It seems like the coldest of our winter weather is long gone, and I’m super excited about it. The more it starts to feel like spring, the sooner it seems our baby will arrive.

I forgot to mention my workouts last week, and I’ll only bring them up now because I took a fun picture to capture the size of my belly at 28 weeks, thus completing this side-by-side comparison of the beginning of each trimester:


From left to right: 5 weeks, 14 weeks, 28 weeks. I remember being so excited to finally start showing a bit at 14 weeks. Little did I know what was ahead!

I went to the gym twice during week 28 and started using the adaptive motion trainer instead of walking on the treadmill. I first tried it out of necessity, as both treadmills were occupied, but I found I enjoyed it quite a bit. It’s sort of like an elliptical, but you can adjust the type of movement you do simply by adjusting your stride. You can do everything from the motion of walking up stairs to deep, lunging strides. My most comfortable stride is somewhere in between. I find this machine gets my heart rate going better, makes me sweat more, and is much lower impact than even walking. I may look ridiculous on it with my basketball belly, but I’m a big fan!

This past week, I hit the gym four times (maybe a pregnant record??) to do 40-50 minutes on the adaptive motion trainer and lift weights. I’m in a great every-other-day routine at the moment and feeling fit and strong!

OK, let’s rewind to last Monday, the day after we returned from Leavenworth. I could have written about this in my last post, but I didn’t want to ruin that nice babymoon recap with a very negative experience.

I started really paying attention to the baby’s movements once I hit 28 weeks, as my doctor advised. She had mentioned during our last visit (way back in early January) that I should start counting kicks at the beginning of the third trimester, which meant that I should monitor her movements during an active time each day to ensure I was feeling at least 10 movements over a two-hour period. Once I started counting kicks, I found I had no problem counting 10 big kicks in less than 10 minutes during the baby’s most active periods! I was feeling so reassured that our baby was doing really well.

Over the weekend in Leavenworth, I wasn’t paying as close of attention to her movements because we were out of our normal environment and routine, but I got the sense that she was a bit less active than usual. She usually goes nuts midway between breakfast and lunch, and then again shortly after dinner. I was still feeling her move, but they were more subtle movements, not the big kicks I was used to. I started to worry that what I perceived as a decrease in activity meant something could be wrong.

On Monday morning, her usually active post-breakfast period brought more of the same: subtle movements, but no big, reassuring kicks. I called the hospital to ask whether I should be concerned, and they said it sounded like the baby was doing fine, but I could come in that afternoon for fetal monitoring if I wanted the reassurance. Deep down I knew everything was probably completely normal, but I really wanted to be sure.

Aaron and I left work a bit early to go to the hospital, and we went right back to a room where a nurse strapped a monitor around my belly that amplified and recorded the baby’s heart rate and movements. The baby’s heart rate was audibly strong, and the nurse kept pointing out the thumping sounds of kicks that were clearly happening, but that I couldn’t feel. She had me press a button every time I felt a movement, and I definitely wasn’t pressing as many times as she was actually moving because I just couldn’t feel the most subtle movements.

The nurse explained that every single movement I feel (other than hiccups) counts toward the 10 movements I should count within two hours, which is where I went wrong. I had gotten used to feeling big kicks, so I had been counting only big kicks. If I had been counting every movement — gentle flutters, rolls, flips, etc. — I would have easily gotten to 10 earlier that day.

Sounds great, right? The baby was clearly doing fine, and there was nothing to worry about. We could have walked out of the hospital then and felt completely calm and reassured. 

But something about this nurse’s personality was incredibly antagonizing. First, she made me feel like an idiot for not being able to feel every single movement, and not knowing that all the movements counted. She chided me for not paying attention to the baby’s movements, when in fact I was there because I had been paying attention and I was worried! It was all due to a misconception on my part, but that didn’t mean I hadn’t been paying attention. 

Then, when I said I felt reassured by the monitor, she said something horrible: “Just because this baby is OK today doesn’t meant it’s going to be OK tomorrow. You need to be worried every day.”

I was already on the emotional edge due to my anxiety going into this whole experience and my raging pregnancy hormones, so this made me start to cry. LISTEN, LADY. I am worried every day. You don’t need to tell me to be worried every day. I need someone to tell me to do what I can, which is be aware of the baby’s movements to make sure she is doing well, and then carry on with my life!

Then I said something about the baby clearly being very active, and that was reassuring, and she said something even more horrible. It was something about how she once had a patient whose baby was extremely active due to something being terribly wrong, and the excessive movement was actually an indication that the baby was dying. WHY WOULD ANYONE SAY THIS TO A PREGNANT WOMAN?? This turned my tears into hysterical crying.

I was trying so desperately to get the reassurance that I had come to the hospital for and could have so easily gotten, and she was making me feel like crap and planting new worries in my head about feeling too much movement. 

Aaron later said he was ready to give this nurse a piece of his mind at this point, but I was way ahead of him. I despise confrontation and will rarely call someone out for being a jerk, but I felt like I needed to stand up for myself and this lady deserved it. Between my frantic sobs, all I could muster was, “YOU… ARE… NOT… HELPING!” and a few other things, but I wish I could go back to that moment and really give it to her. I honestly don’t understand how she makes her living working with the most sensitive, hormonal women with that shitty, tactless attitude.

She tried to defend herself for just telling it like it is, and then thankfully excused herself after she realized I wasn’t calming down in the slightest. Aaron spent the next few minutes soothing me, and then a different nurse came in and said all the most reassuring and sane things I needed to hear all along. When I told her the previous nurse said I should be worried every day, her eyes got all wide and she was like, “Oh nooooo, you can’t live like that.” NO KIDDING!

Anyway, it was all so needlessly traumatic and stupid. I was on-edge emotionally for the whole rest of the day and about half of the next, even though I knew our baby was fine. Luckily I got over it, and I’ve been feeling plenty of reassuring movements every day since then. I’m still paying attention, of course, but purposefully NOT worrying about it anymore as an act of defiance against that awful nurse. Pardon me, but that lady can suck it.

So, that was Monday. On Friday, we had our regular monthly checkup with our doctor. I’m officially up 23 pounds and my belly is measuring a few weeks ahead! Our doctor wasn’t particularly surprised or worried by this, as our baby measured in the 90th percentile at our 20-week ultrasound, but she recommended we have another ultrasound in a few weeks to take new measurements and see just how big she’s gotten.

We are thrilled to be having another ultrasound since we thought the 20-week ultrasound would be our last. Last time, the ultrasound tech switched to 3D for a minute so we could try to see her face, but she had her hands blocking most of it and what we could see just looked kind of creepy (due to the technology, not her). I wonder if we’ll get to see her little face this time. Eeee!

I asked our doctor if there’s anything I should be doing differently in the meantime, and she said I could stand to watch my carb intake. I mentioned my daily bagel habit, and she was like, “Yeah, maybe take a break from the bagels.” I figured it was time. It was a delicious journey, though.

Aaron is extremely proud of the prospect of our baby being big, and I’m… not worried, but not exactly excited by the idea of birthing a whopper. Aaron and I were both on the big side — he was 9 lb. 10 oz. and born several days early, and I was 8 lb. 10 oz. on my due date — so it may just be inevitable! No matter how big or small she is, all that matters is that she’s healthy and comes whenever she’s ready.

This post is getting crazy-long, so I’ll quickly wrap up by saying I got a prenatal massage on Presidents Day and it was ahhh-mazing! I was supposed to have a massage in our hotel room during our babymoon, but the lady cancelled an hour before the appointment. I think it all worked out for the better, though, because the one person who was available at our local massage place on Monday was a guy, and he did an awesome job. Back when I was marathon training, I got massages from a small-framed woman at that same massage place, and I always felt bad asking her to use more pressure. This guy’s default pressure was plenty strong, and the whole hour was exactly what I needed.

I was also able to lie face-down on an Earthlite pregnancy cushion, which was heavenly in itself. There is a sheet covering it below, but if you look closely you can see the indentation where my belly could hang while still being lightly supported by the sheet.

The best part is that I discovered our insurance covers massages with only a $7 co-pay (and of course I tipped on the full price of the massage), so I booked a massage for every other week until I’m 37 weeks along because WHY NOT?!? I’ll never have this much free time again, and I may never need massages as much as I will over the rest of my pregnancy.

That’s all for now! I’m so looking forward to my baby shower this weekend and sharing all about it next week!

Pregnancy: Week 28 (and Our Babymoon!)


These smiling photos are nice and all, but how about one that more accurately represents my state of mind as I enter the third trimester?


My belly is officially big enough to act as a convenient shelf for resting my hands while Aaron takes a few test shots to figure out the lighting. I take this opportunity to make interesting faces.

Our baby is almost 16 inches long, weighs about 2.5 pounds, and is the size of a coconut. I’ve gained 1.6 pounds since last week, which puts me up about 20 pounds overall. I read an article that said I should be putting on ½ pound to 1 pound per week in the third trimester, and I’m like, hello, have you heard of bagels? Obviously not, and I am sad for you.

I am, however, definitely feeling the effects of this weight gain on my back and feet by the end of each day. I’m starting to look forward to the not-being-pregnant-anymore part in a few months. I’m really not looking forward to the increased discomfort that’ll come before then.

On a fun note, I recognized little baby hiccups for the first time this week! One night while I was lying in bed, I felt tiny, regular pulses in my belly — almost like a heartbeat, but definitely not kicks. It took me a second to realize what it was. So strange, but so cute.

The big, exciting event this week was that Aaron and I went on our babymoon! Rather than plan a big trip somewhere far away, we decided to enjoy a quiet weekend in Leavenworth, which is an adorable Bavarian-themed town about two hours east of Seattle. We did a fun springtime trip there back in 2013 (during which I did a 17-mile marathon-training run… OMG), and an awesome (boozy) trip with three other couples last January. We love us some Leavenworth!

We typically choose an inexpensive hotel or Airbnb room when we travel, but this time we splurged on a romantic, rustic B&B that my former co-worker highly recommended: Run of the River


It. Was. Awesome.


Each of the six rooms has spectacular mountain and river views, a cozy fireplace, a jetted spa tub, heated tile in the bathroom, etc. It was far nicer than the level of accommodation we’re used to, so it was a really amazing treat for us!


I cannot overstate the amazingness of feeling weightless in this tub. I guess I need to take more baths in our (comparatively tiny) tub at home!


The view from our balcony was stunning. While Aaron went mountain biking one day, I wrapped myself up in blankets and ate my favorite brie and crackers while sitting in an Adirondack chair, just staring at nature. I might’ve been in heaven.

Aaron didn’t have too much success with mountain biking since the snow wasn’t packed hard enough, but at least he got this cool photo!


Perhaps the highlight of our stay was the five-course breakfast each morning, which was served family style alongside the other 10 guests at this big table.

We started with yogurt (mango with shredded coconut one day, then apple-cinnamon with granola the next), followed by fresh fruit, an egg scramble (chorizo/onion/pepper, then migas), a carb (heavenly pancakes, then hash browns), and finally, a dessert (baked apple, then pear crisp). Plus, we had freshly made juice, coffee, tea, etc. SO FREAKIN’ GOOD. We had high expectations for the breakfast, thanks to my co-worker’s recommendation, and it completely lived up to the hype.

There was also coffee and tea available all day, plus a freshly made cake set out around 3 p.m. The day we arrived, it was a dark-chocolate wine cake (amazing), and the next day it was a pineapple upside-down cake (also amazing). We took full advantage. Like, multiple-pieces-of-each-cake advantage.

Away from the B&B, we had a lovely time strolling around downtown Leavenworth amongst the lights as snow fell…

…strolling around Waterfront Park to enjoy the views…

…and eating wonderful dinners at South and Watershed Cafe. Watershed is a new-ish farm-to-table restaurant with an ever-changing menu, and it was our splurge dinner that also doubled as our early Valentine’s Day celebration. It was incredible — a must-visit.

We also spent many hours just hanging out, chatting, and watching the highly addictive Making a Murderer. It was the perfect relaxing weekend!

As much as we enjoyed the peace and quiet, we also saw so many adorable little families walking around Leavenworth and got really excited to come back to visit next time with our daughter on the outside.

Remind me I said that in about six months when I’m dying for some peace and quiet… and sleep. 🙂