Under 30 days to go!

Steve sent me an email this morning to share with me that our little countdown now reads "29 days to go!" This is just unbelievable to us!!!

It has been quite an eventful week...

We had an enjoyable Christmas weekend split between the East and West side of the great Commonwealth of MA. We even got to see Sean, Courtney, Mike and Adrienne for a bit on Friday night, and Kathryn and Matt at Mass on Sunday, which was a special treat.

I was really uncomfortable on Monday night, had dreams that I was in labor, and woke up to some concerns on Tuesday. Luckily I had an OB appointment already scheduled for first thing in the morning so after showering and counting little fetal movements after a quick breakfast, we went warp speed to pack a bag JUST IN CASE and tossed it, a pillow, and my work stuff into the car. I figured if we had the bag we wouldn't need it and we didn't.

The doctor was not nearly as concerned as we were and told us that at this point they would not stop labor if it began - my response to this was to grab his arm and tell him and I quote "you are freaking me out!" He listened for baby's heartbeat and announced cheerily that it was "a regular baby" in there. We were instructed to call if the concerning things I noticed continued, which thankfully has NOT been the case. Phew. I have to go for a glucose test after lunch today, but that is unrelated to this incident. My next appointment is January 3rd and we will likely have weekly visits from here on in!

I have noticed a real change in my belly and am now feeling the baby on my left side, which is brand new. This guy or girl has always favored my right side. Movement has not slowed for the most part and you can now feel the baby moving appendages back and forth through my skin and not just adorable kicks. This is a very strange feeling. My belly is almost sore at the end of the day from all the movement. I began having some pain where my hip meets my leg - sharp and shooting pains. The first occurence of this was in Sean and Courtney's kitchen on Friday. =) It felt like I was losing my legs almost? It continued off and on both while standing and sitting over the weekend and yesterday morning I had a real sharp one while drying my hair that made me say "ow" loud enough to get Steve out of the shower. Can you say hypervigilance? Since Tuesday we have both been a bit on edge... BUT the silver lining of all of this is that we are now mentally in a place where we recognize that though it is unlikely, we could have this baby at any time. This is a very different way to think than "we are having this baby in 4 weeks." (4 weeks from Saturday is our due date!) Now that I have shared all of that, please remind us of how worried we were that we would go this early in February when I am begging to be induced! =)

I will admit that I did speed off into hyperdrive in my baby prep as a result of all this craziness. Who wouldn't?!?! We washed adorable little baby clothes, organized the baby's closet, put things away in the dresser, relocated a table to be the "changing table", reorganized the living room funriture to make more room for toys and visitors, amd are officially calling our second bedroom the baby's room. So much for taking it easy right? That mental switch from weeks to whenever really affects you!!

So what is Cash really up to this week???

... over 5 pounds
... 18 inches long
... not able to do flips in my belly anymore, but still just as active with kicks and punches
... kidneys check!
... liver check!
... most development is now complete, just putting on weight in this last few weeks~

Our big New Year's Eve plans include lobsters (NOT from the Sound!!!) and chocolate fondue at home. Hope you all have a happy and safe New Year!!!

Sad news from the South

It is with a heavy heart that I share the news that my Grandfather passed last night. In my experience, people often select their time and it seems that is just what he did. His birthday was Friday, Christmas was Monday, he passed on Tuesday - likely knowing that my uncle was flying down on Thursday to assist with packing and to plan my Grandmother's relocation from Florida to Massachusetts/Connecticut. In a twist of fate, today is also the 12th anniversary of my father's Dad's passing. The holidays are such a time of joy and celebration, with all the hopes of the new year ahead. This time of year is always bittersweet for my family and though it will weigh heavily upon us to grieve another loss this time of year, I am sure that in some way it will help see us through.

On behalf of my family, thanks to all those who have sent kind notes, good thoughts, and prayers his way. Very special thanks of course to the wonderful hospice team in Florida who provided such loving compassionate care to my grandfather and much needed support to everyone, especially my grandmother.

Happy Holidays from us and Cash!

With all this mild weather it seems very strange that Christmas is this weekend?!? We are readying ourselves for the holidays at home in MA.

Friday night we will most likely head up to Medfield. The annual family party is on Saturday and it will be so nice to see Steve's Dad's family; always a very special event! Santa even comes!! Saturday we will celebrate Christmas with Steve's immediate family before heading over to Steve's Aunt Joanie's for Luminaria 2006. Steve is especially excited to see his godson Nolan. Saturday night we will drive to Western MA to spend some time with Brett and my parents. Brett is actually off for Christmas Eve night AND Christmas DAY!?!? My aunt and uncle will join us for dinner on Christmas. I really enjoy that Christmas is over the weekend this year because it allows us to be able to spend real quality time with both sides of the family.

We have a lot to do before we head home! Besides packing of course, I am baking tonight for my holiday get together at work - whoopies! AND we have plans for our own little Christmas on Thursday night with a nice dinner out, some wine (shhhh!), and our gift exchange.

Sooo... the updates...

The latest news from Florida is that my grandfather is stable with hospice intervention, somewhat restless, but overall quite comfortable. My grandmother is home today taking a much needed break. We're in touch with one another all the time and I have passed on all the kind words people have extended to her and my father. Thank you for keeping us and especially my grandfather in your thoughts.

Cash's week~

Steve and I are going to meet with Cash's pediatrician later today. I have a list of questions for her, but REALLY how much can you "interview" a potential doctor. The only things I really want to to know are how often they want to see Cash the first year, the charges associated with these visits, and if she is open to a shared decision-making model (like that word!?). Other than that - what can we really get from an interview? Until we see her in action we won't really know will we? I won't stress about it. =)

... weight is up to 4.75 pounds
... almost 18 inches long
... Smooth skin as s/he layers on the fat - which I hope to assist with during my holiday meals =)
... Central nervous system still maturing
... Lungs are well-developed
... 99% of babies born at this point survive just fine

Happy Holidays!!

Energy Surge or Progress?

Just got my daily update from my father on Bob in Florida... They arrived back at the hospice facility this morning and were greeted by reports by the nurses that he had toast this morning, is drinking, and is talking. The staff is already discussing how if this progress continues they will need to consider signing him off of hospice as early as next week, which seems (to me) quite hasty given the prognosis earlier this week. Based on my work with this population, he may be experiencing an energy surge which is very common at the end of life. Given that the only medication he is taking at this time is to control pain and secretions and that he is only on a nasal candula when previously he needed much more intervention to breathe - this may be an energy surge... but stranger things have happened... I'll continue to update as the reports come in.

"This kid is active!" and other updates

As I have always been a good news before bad news believer...

OB Appointment ~

Dr. Van Dell exclaimed "this kid's active" while measuring the heart rate with the doppler. I wanted to shout back, "DUH!" but I somehow managed to control myself. Cash has been keeping me up a bit at night with all his/her squirming about, but really that is a good thing. I would rather have an active baby than be waiting around to feel those reassuring little movements. The rest of the appointment was pretty uneventful. They did a fingerstick to test for anemia and while I am not anemic, I have turned into a non-clotter! It seriously took almost 10 minutes for the bleeding to cease and desist and my finger is STILL a tiny bit sore - what's up with that!?!? The doctor shared some helpful hints to get to sleep and some foods to avoid to help manage my heartburn. Luckily the heartburn has eased up a bit - probably the result of some diet changes I have made. At the end of the visit I left with a circumcision release form (only if Cash is a boy!) and our PRE-ADMISSION PAPERWORK!!! I stared at the form and it is so surreal to think that we are turning in paperwork!??! My next appointment is December 26th...

Other Baby-related goings on~

We have officially figured out how to operate that car seat! (thanks Sandy and Sylvia!!!) I should take a photo, because we practiced strapping in my stuffed bear and he is currently still strapped in and ready to go for a ride. We have yet to tackle actually installing it however. I have a call into the town Police Department because they offer installation appointments to ensure safety. We both have the LATCH system in our car, but I know I would feel better if someone else at least inspected our handiwork before we bring the baby home.

Had my first complete stranger rub my belly - and I couldn't really say anything because it was in a professional situation. Family is one thing - but I didn't even know this person! She just rubbed away and said - "oh you're having a boy!" Maybe next time I will have the guts to rub the offender's belly back?

I continue to get a bit more uncomfortable at night. Steve has been my lifesaver! He came up with a nifty little pillow behind the back and preggo pillow in the front remedy that had me snoring in under 5 minutes - BLESS YOU STEVE!!! I have slept solidly through the night since the pillow intervention until at least 5AM!

Congrats to Steve!

He attended his company's annual awards and holiday party this afternoon and though he did not expect it he received a really wonderful award for "outstanding leadership and achievement!" I am SO incredibly proud of him!!!!

And the sad news....

The update on my Grandfather/Bob in Florida is that he has been moved (this afternoon) from the hospital to a 4-bed hospice facility in Orlando. I am told that the ride over was somewhat long and stressful and that he needed the mask on the way over. Last I heard he was settling into his room (very nice by all reports and private) and the crew were going to take a much needed break for a meal (their first since breakfast). My brother flew down this morning and it is unclear how long he will be staying. My parents still plan on returning North on Saturday at this point.

Please keep him in your thoughts - I will continue to update as information becomes available.

Update on Florida...

A brief update seems appropriate regarding the worsening situation in Florida. My grandfather (Cindy's father) continues to struggle and remains in the ICU. He has up moments and very down moments and after spending a period greater than 6 hours without a vent mask on, he has suffered a severe set back. My parents are en route on Tuesday and expect to be there for the remainder of the week. Admist all of the excitement and happiness of both this time of year and welcoming Cash, there is a gentleman in Florida who would greatly benefit from any kind thoughts or prayers you can send along to him.

HEADLINE: NINJA MORPHS INTO WIGGLE WORM!

Seemingly overnight - we have a wiggle worm on our hands. I guess the "baby cave" must be getting a bit too cramped because it now feels more like a rubbing against than a kick when Cash moves around. As recent as a few days ago Cash pushed out against my stomach and when I reached down and touched the little rounded spot (in a vain attempt to identify the body part protruding from my abdomen) the baby MOVED AWAY from my touch. So FUN! It was like interacting with Cash before s/he gets here... I have had similar experiences most days since. I can't wait for Steve to share in that too!

We have a crib!!!
The big news from the weekend is that we built the crib! It was a painless experience and it came together quickly and easily thanks to simple-to-understand directions and not so many pieces. =)

Office/Nursery
Pictures of Cash's room are posted below. We now officially have an office/nursery - which we think will work out just fine for now. I am imagining that Steve will actually be grateful to have the computer in that room during his share of the middle of the night wake ups - he can read ESPN or boston.com or check his work email while he comforts the little one back to dreamy slumber. More likely we will hover around it at 3AM bleary-eyed and exhausted googling ways to get the baby to sleep =)

32 Weeks
We are in the 32nd week - so just about 8 weeks until Cash's estimated arrival! I have been feeling pretty good overall. Getting out of the car and getting up from the couch are getting to be a little more challenging, but not cumbersome. I feel like Cash just went through a little growth spurt because I feel a lot bigger. We are planning on taking some 32nd week photos and will post so you will have to let me know if I finally look pregnant =) Heartburn continues to irk me, but I am managing ok.

The wonders of Massage
I had my pregnancy massage on Saturday! Steve gave me a gift certificate for our anniversary and it was so wonderful!!!! What a nice hubby. It was an hour and focused on my back, hips, legs, and feet. GLORIOUS!!! I wish I had gotten one each trimester it was so great. I had begun to feel some lower back pain, but the massage therapist worked hard on that area and it was 110% better when I left.

So what's happening with Cash this week~
... almost 4 pounds
... almost 17 inches long
... Toenails - but no pedicure in sight yet =)
... may already have a headful of hair - or peach fuzz
... skin is becoming less wrinkled looking
... general growth!

This time next year we will be getting ready to celebrate Cash's first Christmas and Cash will be almost a year old!

On a special note: Please extend some thoughts and prayers to my mother's parents in Florida who have been coping with some very stressful construction in their home and are hoping to be moving north soon. Wouldn't that be the best Christmas gift of all?!?!

View from the door...



















The office "corner"













Cash's future alma mater?













The Crib!













The crib "interior" with mobile













Another view (the sox stuff WILL come down - photos of Humarock will go up)



















Cash's dresser - Reese approves!

Shower photos...

A few photos from the shower... Thanks to Dad for being photographer for the day.

Steve helped out with some of the heavier items...














Steve displaying Cash's new bedding (a gift from my parents) with a beach theme OF COURSE =)














Steve and Emma. Does she not melt your heart!?! He is going to be a terrific Dad!














With Mary and Emma, we can't wait for her and Cash to become friends!

Two months from today...

That's right! Our little cashew is coming in two months - January 27th - give or take a couple days of course... As I type this the little one is currently experiencing those dang hiccups. I am feeling the little thump every few seconds in exactly the same spot...

LOTS to update on~

Shower!

My mother put together a lovely shower for us and Cash in Western MA. She got some big help from her good friends Sue and Barbara who assisted her with many details including the favors and centerpieces. They are just wonderful people and I am so glad that my mother has supportive women like that in her life. The breakfast was delish and as it is my favorite meal of the day, I went to town with a big plate of everything! The guests were incredibly generous, in both time and overwhelming gifts for the baby. We have been busy putting together many of the items and readying Cash's room, which is now looking more and more like a baby might be moving in soon. More than anything it was special to share this time and our excitement with such great friends and family. Thank you!!!!! Pictures to be posted soon!!

Gobble, Gobble

First a rundown of the week...

Wednesday ~
No work for us! We packed up on Tuesday, much to the cat's dismay, and woke up early to get a head start on the traffic. Steve absolutely made my day by suggesting a diner breakfast at our local place on the way to 95 - Three slices of french toast later we were on our way north. NO TRAFFIC. (That begs to be repeated!) NO TRAFFIC. We made record time, stopped in Natick for some last minute shopping and were in Medfield by 3. Steve played in his annual Alumni High School Football game at good ol' MHS and I chatted with the other wives Courtney and Erin over FREE cocoa. From there it was back to Court and Sean's for a festive evening at their new house which is really coming together C!!! I know it meant a lot for Steve to reconnect with his old friends.

Thursday ~
Thanksgiving in Medfield. We shared a lovely day with Steve's family and Cash enjoyed his/her first Thanksgiving via my belly. Early concensus is that Cash enjoys Turkey and all fixings. Got to run over to Joanie's too see her and the kids. Unfortunately we capped the evening off with a BC loss to Miami, booooo.

Friday~
Drove home to Western MA early afternoon to spend time with my parents. They had a wedding later that night, so we shared some yummy french meat pie with them and they were off and running. (here is your big shout out Jesse!) We met Jesse and Amy out for some late dinner in Granby, CT as they were in town for the holiday visiting his mother who lives in CT. It was nice to see them and horrifying when we realized we won't likely see them again until Cash arrives. HOW SCARY!

Saturday~
Spent the morning convincing Dad to get a new TV for his newly renamed "family room!" Relaxed over omelettes in the morning (yum, no one makes an omelette like Cindy!) and then thoroughly stuffed ourselves with open faced turkey sandwiches before we hit the road to head back to CT. We took half a meat pie with us which we gorged on later. It is even better reheated if that is possible. Lounged, took in a movie, I cleaned out more of Cash's closet.

Sunday ~
Slept late, ran errands, put together stuff for Cash, watched the Pats game. A nice end to our holiday week. LOUNGING!

Thanksgiving had special meaning to us this year. We have SO many wonderful things in our life to be thankful for - our new life here in CT, our fabu new jobs, great family, good friends, and of course, our little Cash on the way. We recognize that not everyone was able to spend the holiday the way we were; that they may not have had the MANY delicious meals we had, or shared the company of the people they love and care about. We spent 4 days doing just that and we are so incredibly thankful...

OB Visit this morning

Now based on my recap it should be clear to everyone how I gained two more pounds in only three weeks... all that turkey and deliciousness has to go somewhere right? We had our first two week appointment this morning. My blood pressure has been consistent for the last few visits now, which for me is great and good for Cash too. =) He measured my belly with the tape measure and felt for placement. The heartbeat was good and steady, but Cash was once again running away, although not as much as last time (probably running out of room?) We asked him about my newest symptom heartburn - oh yeah - it's pretty terrible. My heart goes out to heartburn sufferers everywhere. It doesnt matter what I eat! I even get it from water, how is that possible!!?!? He said we may or may not have another ultrasound for sizing, but he isn't sure yet. I secretly hope we do! Who wouldn't want another preview of their little one???? We'll see the docs again in two weeks!

What's happening with Cash this week?

... 16 inches long
... a little more than 3 pounds
... Turning head side to side
... "fattening up a bit" so those little legs and arms are getting nice and chubby

And in honor of it being the 27th of November, with two months to go here are some important world happenings that occured on January 27th

...Motzart, Lewis Carroll, and Donna Reed born
...Thomas Edison patented the electric light bulb (1880)
... Treaty of Paris signed to end the Vietnam War (1973)
... Michael Jackson's head catches on fire during filming of Pepsi ad (1984)

Last week in the 20's

Here we are in our LAST week of "the 20's." This Saturday we will officially hit the 30-week mark!

Unfortunately this hasn't been the best week of the pregnancy. I worked some extra hours over the weekend resulting in my feet and back not feeling so nice at the end of the day, but I was glad to help. This day must have been more exhausting than I had originally thought because I felt pretty off on Sunday and Monday and hardly slept at all on Monday night.

It seemed like everytime I was up the baby was too; rolling around and repositioning. I even took a sick day on Tuesday because I just didn't feel right and thought I was catching a cold, something I wanted desperately to avoid. Today I am feeling much better, but still not quite normal. I have come to accept that perhaps this is the "new normal?" There is supposed to be some degree of insomnia in this third trimester and I am finding that I am getting tired earlier in the evenings again. This weekend was probably a much needed wake up call that I need to remember to really take care of myself AND Cash.

Cash continues to be very active this week. Still lots and lots of kicks, but more sightings of unknown body parts pushing up and out and along my belly. Steve felt some of this kind of movement for the first time this week. I have also noticed some rhythmic movements that seem to last quite a long time. According to my books these are likely hiccups, which is evidence that Cash is indeed practicing some breathing techniques with the amniotic fluid! Cash still likes James Taylor, but we have found that baby responds especially well when we play him/her a new song that they haven't heard before. I had JT on in the car this morning actually and I was singing along as I made the slow ride down 95 to work when I suddenly became overwhelmed realizing that I was actually singing to Cash and not just to occupy my time. Poor Cash - his/her Mommy's voice isn't the best.

Cash's week~

... 2.5 pounds

... a little over 15 inches long from head to heels

... muscles and lungs continue to mature

... head is growing to accomodate a growing brain - we want Cash to be brilliant and all but a little less growth here would be ok by me =) - BILLIONS of neurons developing!

Mom-to-be's week~

... Saw Marc and Kelly, Christian, Christina, and Baby Christian on their way home from a wedding on Long Island Sunday - great to see them!

... Gave a presentation to a local middle school's parent teacher organization meeting about Cancer's affect on families

... Headed home on Friday night for the big BC/MD game - according to Steve the future of the season hinges on their performance (that and Wake Forest has to lose their next 2) {how impressed is my husband that I know that!?}

... Wishing Mary and Dan the best of luck on the West Coast - their new life begins December 1st - we are hoping to see them this Saturday evening

... Mom's throwing a shower for Cash and the Western MA crowd this Sunday morning! How nice of her!!!

...Getting ready for the sit down at work re post baby planning - wish me luck!

... My belly is just growing and growing and growing - and I love it!!!

Steve and I are getting so excited to meet this little person - just over 10 weeks to wait!

Our LAST Monthly OB Visit!

This morning marked a milestone; our last monthly OB visit. I go back in three weeks, the week following Thanksgiving, and will then go every two weeks until we get to final countdown. The visit went well. He measured my belly with a tape measure (a first), checked my blood pressure (normal), listened to baby's heart rate (loud, strong, and a bit faster than last time, though still within a normal range), and palpated my belly to see how Cash is lying in there (head down this morning).

Perhaps it was James Taylor that had Cash's head down? For about 20 minutes at night Cash listens to some James through the IPOD. His/her favorite is "Secret O' Life." That is the one that gets the most kicks =) Most likely this had nothing to do with it though. The Dr. says that until we get to about 35 weeks the baby will still move around quite a bit and won't maintain head down positioning until about that point when the head/body ratio is greater.

No more yucky orange drink for me either! I passed my glucose test, in fact they were alarmed that it was actually a bit low. There was some miscommunication though because Quest Diagnostics told me to fast for 10-12 hours and it turns out I didn't have to do that. I was starving when I went in for the test and I must have metabolized it really quickly.

We made Cash's dresser on Sunday and it looks really nice. It is large enough that the little one should have it for a long LONG time. Next item on the construction agenda is the crib, though we aren't sure what to do about that since it definitely won't fit out the doorway once it is made and will need to be taken apart when we move. Part of us wants to wait until the move to put it together in our new place and the other part wants to put it together as the "nesting reflex" continues to get stronger.

Steve is away in MA until Friday on business. (WAH!) I was thinking to myself this morning as I lay with kitty in bed watching the Today show that it was just the girls until he comes back WHEN I REALIZED it might be just the girls, or it might not. HA!

Speaking of kitty, I think she finally is on to us that something is going on. She voiced her obvious displeasure on Sunday during the dresser construction by defiantly sitting on the futon and putting her ears back. She has shifted from sleeping on my pillow to sleeping against my side. When I sit on the couch she squeezes herself into the crook in my leg and leans back against my belly. Though there is sure to be some serious kitty cuddle time, we will miss Steve...

Back by popular demand...

More Bump Photos!

We really should be doing a better job of taking these. Looking back at how things were way back in June and comparing it to now makes us realize how much Cash is growing and just how quickly the time has flown by. Just 3 months left before the little guy or girl makes their big appearance.

How am I feeling?

Overall, GREAT! I have maintained my energy so far, though the darkness on my drive home from work has always been an issue for me as far as energy goes. I am finding that I have increased difficulty sitting in one position for a long period of time and that sometimes I need some assistance to get up. Cash still likes to sink low when I am sitting it seems and this often makes it a challenge to switch positions or to stand up. I am REALLY fitting into my maternity pants now, which I thought would never happen. I notice that I have to pull them up a lot less than just a couple weeks ago. Cash continues to delight me with his/her predictable movements and kicks. I think that I will really miss this intimate time with the little one once they make their entrance. It is such a nice little random reminder during the day (and night) that we are going to be parents soon...

An alarming incident of sorts...

Last night Steve and I treated ourselves to a little dinner out. Nights of random dinners out are numbered and we are definitely trying to take advantage! I did not eat anything out of the ordinary - a crock of chili and a small caesar salad. Cash is used to some spiciness because I like things with a little zip. We got home, watched TV in the bedroom, and somewhere in the middle of Grey's (when Steve was LONG asleep FYI) I felt like I really needed to shift my position (I was on my side) because my belly felt odd. Not painful. Not a pressure. Just odd. So I sat up and felt my belly and discovered a warped wierd belly. My best estimation is that Cash was VERTICAL and it seemed like one of his/her shoulder was pressing outward. It was insane. I woke Steve up because I needed SOMEONE else to see what I was seeing and make sure I hadn't fallen asleep and dreamt this wierdness up. It was the strangest thing! I lay back down in bed and then sat up a few minutes later and the warped belly was gone. Not a sign of Cash to be found...

I have clearly entered the "alien stage" as was so eloquently put by Steve's boss. At first I lauged it off, but really - this is the "alien stage."

Cash's week - Week 27 (done after today!)

... sleeping and waking at regular intervals

... opening and closing eyes

... lungs capable of functioning with assistance.

Cash's week - Week 28 (starts this Saturday!)

... over two pounds now
... 14.8 inches from top of his/her head to his/her tippy toes
... EYELASHES (hopefully long like Dad's!)
... able to turn head toward a continuous bright light from the outside
... Fat layers forming to keep Cash warm in the cold New England winter


























































Yucky Orange Drink

I had my one hour fasting glucose test this morning at 8 AM. Good times. I had to drink a little bottle of this lovely orange flavored dextrose drink in 5 minutes time and then wait for an hour in the waiting room for a blood draw to see if I have developed gestational diabetes. Most docs give you the bottle to drink before your next visit and do the draw onsite, but ours makes us go to Quest. So I stopped eating last night at around 8pm, nothing to eat or drink after that, and was starving when I got to the office this morning. It felt like the sugar went right through my system, creating some insane Cash activity and a headache. We'll get the results at my next appointment. Here's hoping that we pass!

Random updates...


So that is what little Cash looks like now that we are now in the 26th week. Pretty cute huh?

... weighs nearly 2 pounds
... nerve pathways in his/her ears are developing and reaction to sound should be more consistent
...veins are visible through the skin
... awareness of lightness and darkness
... sometimes you can hear the heartbeat with a stethoscope

Something we read suggested we have some flashlight playtime with the little cashew. At first there was quite a response when I turned the light on and off, but later there was none. I should note that the "later" was during a time when Cash is typically asleep.

I have begun to take note of more active and less active times of the day.

7AM - Cash usually wakes up when I do and stays active until I take a shower. Then there is less activity (or maybe I just don't notice it while I throw myself together to get out the door?) until I get into the car.

8:45AM - I usually feel at least one good period of kicking on my ride in, usually toward the tail end of my ride after I have been cursing at the CT/NY drivers on the thruway. Did I just say thruway? good god, I am becoming Connecticized! ANYWAY - hopefully that is not Cash responding to my outbursts of "go right ahead!" "Oh CMON!" or my sarcastic favorite "and why would you use your signal!?"

9-12PM - Cash is typically pretty inactive during the morning hours

1pm - 4pm Periods of activity in the afternoon after lunch.

5-7pm - All quiet on the baby front - sometimes a rare kick, but not reliably

8pm ish -After dinner there is usually a little movement and some position changes

10pm - The real fun is bedtime, when I can count on some serious kicking after I lie down. So far I haven't really been woken up in the middle of the night, but sometimes it is very difficult to find a comfy sleeping arrangement. Thank GOD for that Boppy pillow!

Though Steve and other people (including Amy and Auntie Kerry) have been able to feel the little kicks, our dumb cat Reese sits right against me and does not even notice anything out of the ordinary. She will soon enough though when Cash comes home to rule to roost!

It is becoming increasingly difficult to sit comfortably too. Cash seems to like to lie transverse (best we can tell anyway) and lower which makes it hard to get up or sit forward. It is WILD when you are able to touch your belly and feel the hardness of baby below. =)

We have plans to head up to MA again this weekend for the BC Buffalo game and to see Comics Come Home with some old friends. We'll get to see Uncle Brett/Uncle Bub for the first time in a LONG time on Saturday as well (maybe since our mother's birthday in JUNE?!)

New Hampshire and POP!





We had a lovely anniversary celebration over the weekend in Bretton Woods, NH. The drive up to the White Mountains was gorgeous, with foliage in full effect! We took some lovely photos of the "Presidential Range" from the Cog Railway tour. Our train used a whole ton of coals and 3000 gallons of water to push our replica train car up the side of the mountain, through Jacob's Ladder, and to the summit. Some parts were so steep you could barely stand, but our crew got us there safe and sound. To be honest, I was more worried about the desecent back down the mountain and could not comprehend how we would slow down! It worked out beautifully! We climbed the summit and saw all the way to the Atlantic, to Quebec, and beyond from the peak. It was GREAT!!! We also enjoyed the peace and solitude of the Mount Washington Hotel and 4 absolutely delicious meals.

Perhaps as a result of the intense eating and the pressure change - I POPPED this weekend. Ok, maybe it was just time to pop, but I did. I did not recognize myself in the mirror all dressed up for dinner. So strange, but exciting because for SO long it felt like only we saw the bump. Now everyone can! I will have to have Steve take some more bump photos to post.

Here are some photos of our trip.





















































No longer newlyweds...


It's offical, the honeymoon is over.

NOT REALLY! We just celebrated our 2nd anniversary yesterday and it is hard to believe that it was two years ago that we were sitting beside a brilliantly clear ocean in Aruba, drinking Balashi and "Sand in my shorts," and enjoying our real honeymoon. Like Steve's father said, just 28 more to catch up to them. =)

We are officially celebrating over the weekend in NH at the Mount Washington Hotel where leaves are at their peak right now! YAY! We exchanged lovely "cotton" anniversary gifts and went out for Japanese Hibachi last night which was FUN. I toasted with a virgin strawberry daquiri... I can honestly say that I have NEVER had that much food put in front of me before and had a CLEAN plate at the end of the meal, but I ate every single bean sprout, piece of shrimp, and hibachi noodle on my plate. Consider it further evidence that my appetite has been kicked up a notch by Cash.

In honor of our anniversary we also FINALLY put together our gallery frame of our wedding photos. There is a photo from our honeymoon which will soon be replaced by our first family photo.


OB Appointment on 10/9/06

We had our 6 month appointment on Monday. She easily found the heartbeat until Cash started moving away from her. S/he did this at least three times before she was able to get a good reading, which was hysterically funny because as I keep saying I have a kickboxing maniac in my belly. The baby has the most room to move around between 24 and 28 weeks, so I am expecting continued craziness in there for awhile to come. She did report that the heartbeat was nice and strong and just where it should be. My blood pressure was excellent; 112/70 (apparently it drops in pregnancy? and mine has always been on the high side).

Then she palpated my stomach and showed us how Cash was lying at that moment, pointing out where the head and legs were to Steve... This was more on the freaky side than we had expected. She also said that our next monthly appointment will be our last monthly, then we will go every other week, and during the last 4 weeks we will go every single week. WOW!~ She prepped us on calling into the office when something seems not right and reminded us to call them first before going to the hospital. This was all prompted by questions about some pressure I had been feeling at the gym while on the treadmill. She said the pressure is normal and I will begin to feel more as time goes on. It is unreal that we are talking about delivery and calling in and all that!?!?

I have to have my one-hour glucose test at the end of this month to test for gestational diabetes. We also have our big childbirth class coming up on the 21st!

This week in the life of Cash

... skin is translucent and wrinkled

... gained a 1/4 of a pound since last week!

... brain is growing rapidly and taste buds are developing

... lungs are developing "branches" of the "respiratory tree"

This week in the life of Mom-to-be

... "baby cave" is the size of a soccer ball!

We officially have a place for Cash to rest his or her little head!

Cash's crib has arrived!

I received confirmation that it was delivered around noontime today. We won't dwell on the fact that there are two 70 pound boxes sitting outside our front door that Steve will need to push up a flight of stairs. Nor will we dwell on where we will put them in the interim. We won't even think about the actual "putting together adventure" we will surely have with both the crib and matching dresser. NOPE!

I tried to post a photo from the web, but was unable to. So we'll post one once the room transformation starts getting underway. Since we cannot paint, we can get going on the actual construction a bit later. I know I speak for both of us when I say it is a tremendous weight lifted now that we have selected and now hopefully received Cash's very first furniture. WIERD huh??

I spent part of Sunday FINALLY cleaning out the closet in Cash's room. We've only been talking about that for over a month now =)

Cash's week~

The highlights...

... Weight - 1.25 pounds
... Length - nearly a foot long
(that is the size of a small baby doll you might find in a store!)
... Cash's body is nearly formed
... Middle ear bones are hardening
... Becoming more and more proportioned everyday
... Pancreas is forming (insulin production)
... Fingernails almost fully formed
...Lanugo (that fine hair that covers its whole body) is darkening

Cash would even have a chance for survival if born now, but let's not dwell on that, s/he has a lot more cooking to do!

Mom's Week~

the highlights...

... Baby cave is over an inch above my belly button now
... Increase in appetite
... At our appointment on Monday the doctor could palpate my abdomen and feel how the baby is positioned
... LOTS and LOTS of movement felt

Baby Cash was so active at the BC game over the weekend (BC 22 ME 0) that I almost thought something was wrong. This continued all the way home and through most of the night. Alumni Stadium is a loud and crazy place, so I am sure some of the movement was a reaction to all the noise. I was more comfortable at this game, as the weather was much cooler and I was well hydrated.

I can't even keep track of all the moving about these days! Sleeping is funny because I can sometimes SEE the baby through my belly. You can see that they are pressing right up against the side I have been sleeping on. WILD!!! Steve has even noticed that the kicks are much stronger and more frequent. They certainly don't hurt by any means, but they are definitely getting to be a bit harder.

Colleen is coming down on Friday after work. She'll spend the night and head into the city via train to visit Pam. Steve, myself, and my parents are planning a day in the city too. A stop at the American Museum of Natural History and then dinner at Carmine's will make for a nice day, should the weather hold out that is. Let's hope!

Photos as promised...

Here are the photos from our weekend and the most recent "bump watch" shots.


Picture inside the Golf Club at Chelsea Piers of the driving pier. Sorry about the glare.














We hit 100 balls between us.






































Yankee Stadium, Sox lost, and the pole really wasn't as much in the way as it looks.













These were taken during week 21 and at night.




















Cash Money keeps growing

According to What to Expect and my little web reference, Cash is almost a pound! His or her eyelids, eyebrows, and lips are in their final places and growing. Cash continues to be mommy's little maniac down there. I have noticed that while I had previously only felt movement on my way left side, I now cannot predict where s/he will "strike" next and have felt big kicks in the middle and way over on my right side too. Sometimes there are bigger kicks that startle me, but for the most part Cash is still "flutter kicking" and Steve can usually barely feel it.

We went into the city last Saturday for the day. We went to Chelsea Piers and hit 100 balls, had lunch, walked around, met up with friends, and went to the night Sox/Yankee game, you know the one they lost =( We got home super late, but got in and out easy on the train. Spent most of Sunday relaxing, it was BLISSFUL!

Happy to report that our childbirth class has been scheduled for the morning of October 21st.

Tours at the hospital happen on Wednesday nights, so we will plan that later on.

THIS WEEK

Thursday -
Kiki and Steve are visiting as part of a business meeting in CT on Thursday. Steve and I are excited to show them around and let them see the life we have created for ourselves down here.

Saturday -
We are also going home for a Def Leppard/Journey concert with some friends, which is sure to be fun.

TO DOS

Mom-to-be needs to reorganize her closet now because MOST of her clothes no longer fit and her maternity section needs some room to expand.

We STILL have NOT cleaned out Cash's room, but we have a plan, which is further along than we were before. I have been boxing up Social Work textbooks and other books for storage.

We have 99.999999% picked out the nursery furniture, thanks to a stop off at Buy Buy Baby while we were in NYC this past weekend.

I will post some photos from our weekend and of the growing baby belly later.

S/he's a maniac, a maniac...

Cash is an absolute MANIAC!

I went from barely being able to tell if our little one is moving around in there just a few weeks ago, to feeling random and sporadic kicks last week, to now being completely aware of Cash's frequent,stronger, and more predictable movement. I can only describe it as a cross between martial arts and dancing. There is an amazing amount of activity occurring following mealtime and as I get situated in bed to go to sleep. It is now so regular that I actually sit back after dinner and wait for the performance to begin and Cash never disappoints.

I felt that...

Since I began to feel the symphony of movement I have become intent on Steve sharing in all this. I cannot imagine what it must be like to be a Dad-to-be and know that all this stuff is happening and not have an idea what it feels like. I have only been able to say "Cash is kicking!" and he has been very excited that I can feel the movement, but I think maybe a little disappointed that he can't yet. Since the movement became more predictable and strong, I often grab his hand and place it on my belly, only to have Cash stop immeadiately. Perhaps it is responding to his nice warm hand, maybe it has a soothing effect on the little one? If that is the case, let's hope that it still has that soothing effect LATER! =)

Last night as I got myself all situated in my "semi-seated-up-watching-TV-in-bed" position, I turned toward Steve knowing that the dance party was due to start any moment and put his hand on my belly. Cash did not let me down. I didn't say anything, I just watched his face and he felt it; a kick, then another, and another. His face was priceless, a mix of pride and joy, and I am just so incredibly happy that I can finally share little Cash with his or her Dad. One more thing to add to the list of things that make us realize that this is moving along really quickly and we are more than halfway to meeting Cash in person.

Cash's week

During this 20th week, Cash is expected to be about 10 inches long (from head to heel or 6.5 inches from head to bottom) and is tipping the scales at around 10 ounces. Cash has about the same amount of sleep and awake time as h/she will have as a newborn. We are hoping that means more sleep! Cash is really working on practicing his/her swallowing this week by with the amniotic fluid.

Mom-to-be's week

At our 20 week appointment earlier this week we learned that I have gained a total of about 8 pounds. The "baby cave" is measuring as high as my belly button now and you can see that my little belly button is getting pushed out and out of Cash's way. If it does pop out, it will stay that way until Cash's big arrival. My newest symptom is a middle of the night insomnia that strikes each morning around 4 am and lasts almost an hour. I am wide awake and staring at the ceiling trying to force myself back to sleep. This makes getting up with the alarm incredibly challenging. Let's hope this little insomnia phase passes quickly. I purchased my first pairs of maternity pants last week. They are still a bit too big, but they are incredibly comfy. I am still working my bella band for some of my larger pre preggo pants, but some of my favs have had to be retired to make way for comfort. I am sure it is not the last I will see of them.

We are also working on scheduling our childbirth class, which is challenging around football games and other fall/winter events. The instructor Lori is really nice and is actually a Labor and Delivery Nurse at our hospital, so we might even end up with her as our nurse on the big birthday!

We also need to look into scheduling a tour of the hospital, so we will know where to go and what to expect. We both think it will be so helpful to see the actual space and maybe JUST MAYBE it will all seem a little less scary?

Here s/he is!!!!

This is from our 18 week ultrasound last week. As you can see Cash has been keeping busy with all his/her growth and this week is sprouting hair!! In this shot Cash's knees are bent up a bit, you can see the knee joint. That is Cash's little arm by his/her head, mixed in with the umbilical cord. We cannot get enough of our little one!

I continue to experience periodic round ligament pain, more on the left side than the right, and especially at night when I am trying to sleep. I am still feeling some sporadic little movements from within, though certainly not on a regular basis yet, but hopefully SOON! Today alone I have felt little flutters at least 3 times since lunch. This kid must love lunch!!! I finally purchased a special pillow this weekend to assist with my sleeping woes and slept the best night of sleep in weeks! Thanks to my hubby for purchasing it for me...

Steve and I also want to thank Kerry and Colleen again for all their assistance this weekend! They endured way too long at Babies R' Us this Saturday looking at strollers, car seats, baby bath tubs, and bottles. You ladies are definitely all set to be aunties! Steve and I were left scratching our heads , but these two knew exactly what to do. THANKS!!!!!


18 week ultrasound this morning, it's a...

SURPRISE!

Don't hate me. That subject was really mean.

As many of you know, Steve and I have been going around and around AND AROUND on finding out if we are having a boy or a girl. Cashew will have to remain just that until his/her big arrival. I could have found out, but it was really important to Steve that we wait since according to him there are so few things in life that we actually get to be surprised about. We had to look away when she was measuring little Cash's soon to be chubby thigh and I so wanted to steal a peak, but I didn't.

The ultrasound itself was AMAZING! The 4D view made me tear up and we have fabulous shots of Cash's darling little face with his/her hand up by his/her cheek. The baby was a wild woman/man the whole time, kicking and swatting and moving about, but yet I felt NOTHING. She had trouble even getting the measurements she needed because of all the dancing about. SO ADORABLE. It was reassuring to see the hands (5fingers), the feet (5 toes), the heart beating away, the kidneys, the spine and all the ribs. Technology is truly amazing and we feel so incredibly blessed to have this little miracle "cooking." We are hoping to enlist Kiki's assistance to scan some of the better shots in this weekend while we are at the beach to post for all to see.

On top of all the fun of seeing baby Cash, we were up on the L&D floor, so we saw the new babies in the nursery that were just hours old, so cute! We also saw a new Dad happily announcing his news on his cellphone to family and friends. Steve beamed seeing the new Dad and said "that's gonna be me." It absolutely melted my heart!

One wierd incident - they graciously validated our parking up on the L&D floor and when we went to have it scanned by the parking attendent in the lobby he asked us what we were having. (the code on the ticket must have identified us as coming from an ultrasound) We said we didn't know and he sat back and looked at us very seriously. He announced, "I see a boy. A little Red Sox fan." HELLO, we live in Southern Connecticut aka Yankee country, we were both dressed for work with no Sox apparel in sight!?!?! Regardless of whether he is right or not, how FREAKY is that!!!!

I can totally understand why psycho Tom wanted to have an ultrasound machine at home for Katie. I would spend all day watching the little bugger if I could =)

Congratulations McShinos - you are now the McCarthys!

Steve, Cash, and I all had a marvelous time at the McShino nuptials this past weekend. The bride was gorgeous, the groom dapper, and they are now enjoying their honeymoon in Tahiti! We realized last nightaqs we were lazing about watching the Emmys that even though their flight had left at 8 am they still had several more hours to FLY before arriving in paradise. Hope they slept the WHOLE WAY =)

Here are some photos of the great event, it was clearly a blast.

Cash updates later this week after our ultrasound on Wednesday!!!







Hoorah! A kiss with cheers!













The Steves









Flynnewskis no more, the Flynns back from their honeymoon in Hawaii











The Fam











the "SweetHAWT" table













Mc Mr. and Mrs. (plural!)














Giving the "ring finger"

Houston, We have MOVEMENT!

Since I have always been a back and tummy sleeper, I have been sleeping with a pillow between my knees in an attempt to keep myself on my side. Thus when I feel I need to switch sides I have to half wake up to reposition both myself and my knee pillow. At around 3AM this morning, I moved from left side to right side, moved the pillow from the left to the right and stuffed it back between my newly repositioned knees. As I was just drifting off again I felt a little tap. My eyes opened wide and I even woke poor sick Steve up to tell him. It was clearly not to be confused with gas, this was Cash! reacting to my movement? being woken from his/her slumber as well? Saying hello?

Hello Cash.

Gas or Cash?

It is not often that you hear that question I am sure, but it is one that I ask myself just about everyday now. Let's face it, until you become pregnant you are often not aware of all the fun and interesting little quirks to being pregnant. Allow me to lift the veil of mystery for a moment and inform you all that expecting ladies tend to a tad gassy. There I said it! Now to make it even more complicated, baby's movement can feel like a little gas bubble. So what is it?? Gas or Cash?
Doc said I should be feeling movement soon, though it likely won't be everyday. So I sit quietly at work, in the car, on the couch, in bed and concentrate on feeling this miraculous movement, only to be baffled if what I am feeling is actually cash. I am sure it will become evident soon enough as s/he gets stronger and moves around more.

This week - Happenings
Steve has been battling a cold (and I have been battling to NOT get his cold) and went to the doctor yesterday because he cannot hear out of one of his ears. He has a middle ear infection and needs to take antibiotics to take care of it. Poor Steve!!! So not the most fun week ever for him, but he wants to be feeling better by Friday for SEAN AND COURTNEY'S WEDDING!!! Yes, the McShinos are getting hitched this Saturday and we couldn't be more excited for them. We leave early Friday afternoon to drive up to our old 'hood for the rehearsal. Here's hoping for a traffic free afternoon for all our major highways (95N, 91N, 84E, and 90E).

This week - In the Life of Cash

Cash's limbs are reaching their "relative proportions" and will grow evenly with the rest of the body after this week. The five senses are developing too. By week 18 his/her skin will have two distinct layers; dermis and epidermis (the one we see). Cash is also covered in a lovely greasy, waxy, cheese-like substance called the vernix. This will protect that cute little bod from abrasions, bruising, and shield it from the amniotic fluid. Most exciting to me is that Cash now has reactive hearing. Though his/her ears are neither structurally nor functionally complete h/she can react to sounds and noises and maybe even voices. Very exciting!!!

This week - In the Life of Kerri
I am experiencing "round ligament pain." Often at night I have a bellyache or feel sudden or sharp pains in my lower abdomen. Concerning, until I read the book. This is related to the stretching of the muscles or ligaments around the ever growing "baby cave" and is completely normal. I also am sad to report that I must now try to sleep exclusively on my side. This is sad news to a stomach/back sleeper.

Funky dreams
I have been having some really bizarro dreams. Last night's may have been the result of the lethal combo of pregnancy plus an oncoming cold. So I dreamt that MY MOTHER had a baby.

I called her on the phone, she said "oh we had the baby! It's a girl!"
Without skipping a beat I said "who does she look like?"
Her reply "just like you!"

I then got off the phone and explained to Steve that my parents had a baby, a little girl, and she looked just like me.

He said nothing, just stared at me.
my matter of fact reply, "It was a change in life baby."

I don't even want to begin analyzing this one, but the possibilities are nearly limitless. Truly BIZARRO.

And in a semi-related subconscious kind of way

Steve announced not long ago that if Cash is a boy he hopes that someday a mural of Fenway Park can adorn his bedroom walls. I suspect that this is not just to endure the child to the Sox, but also to squelch any Yankee sympathy and GASP fanaticism from developing. I shared this story with a friend. Her reply... (without her permission, hope she doesn't mind!)

What if you do have a boy, and you do live in CT and you do have a RedSox mural on his wall. When he's young he will identify and maybe even grow to love the redsox (let's leave the fact that they are heartbreaking enough as is out of this for the moment) and see them as a wonderful buffer to son-dad bonding time. He gets older and starts school in CT with a bunch of CT/NY friends. He plays at their house in their rooms with their Yankee's murals on their walls and the seeds of doubt begin. "who are the yankee's?" "why don't I have that mural?" "are they judging me?" "am I wrong" and the doubt beings. All his life he is forced to hide the true feelings within him, fearing the judgment and wrath of others. A part of his soul will close distancing him from those around him he doesn't trust enough with his deepest secret. Girls will throw themselves at him for his dashing good looks and intelligence and he will be afraid to open up, afraid of what they will do when they find out.

do you really want to do to your son?

Umm... January????

Doc Visit Monday 8/14/2006 (bp, heartbeat, yada yada yada)

We had our monthly check-up with our Doctor(s) this Monday. I say Doctor(s) because though I have one assigned doc at this practice, they rotate you around all the docs so that you get to know everyone and they get to meet every patient. Steve said it best, this set-up is strange for consistency between visits, but we both feel that it will ultimately pay off for delivery because we will know our on-call doc.

SIDEBAR - Steve was under the impression that an ER doc would deliver Cash at the hospital. HOPEFULLY that will not be the case! One of the docs that has been following us will be on-call and present for delivery. He felt much better...

Mom-to-be's blood pressure was normal (yay!) and we got to hear that precious little heart beat whooshing away on the doppler again. There is something SO reassuring in hearing that little whoosh. Didn't get a heart rate though, whoops!

Here's the big news from our appointment!

Cashew who was once due to arrive February 3rd, 2007 is now scheduled for arrival on January 27th, 2007! They have moved up our date by a week! Cash's arrival will could now coincide with the AFC Championship (wonder how I knew that?) and not Super Bowl weekend.

The difference of that one week makes it feel like this is all going to happen a lot sooner now! We are going to get working on cleaning out some stuff from Cash's room soon and Steve has started gathering information about child care.

As the Doc said, Cash could still make her/his appearance on or about the same time anyway as apparently the estimated due date is "not exactly a science, but more of a GUESS." HOW will my Planner husband PLAN appropriately!?!?!?! =)

Cash's week

I am now 16 weeks and 3 days (just over 4 months).

Our little cashew is measuring at almost 6 inches and weighes about 4 oz. Cash's finger and toenails are growing. A layer of fat is beginning to form under her/his skin. The baby and the placenta are about the same size, almost as large as my hand opened wide. Cash is sucking, swallowing, and blinking! Baby's legs are now longer than his/her arms and they are moving about, though I most likely can't feel it quite yet (but boy am I trying to!).

Mom's week

I have gained 6 pounds since my Pre-Cash days. (5-10 pounds are normal at this point) I rely on my Bella Band more and more these days. After a big meal my bump swells to insane proportions, but is typically just a little bump (we have moved on from bloat!). I am getting my energy back and can make it past 10pm and almost to Sex and the City without much effort. Steve and I are getting to the gym regularly and we are looking into prenatal yoga classes in the area to assist with what our doctor described as "potential back pain as pregnancy progresses." We are headed north this weekend for Sox/Yanks/Beach weekend. It will be nice to see our parents and sit on the beach. Next weekend is the big McShino nuptials and we are psyched to celebrate with the new Mr and Mrs!

Here are some photos from last weekend in Saint Louis for Derek and Claire''s wedding.






Someone knew, but did not know, but KNEW!

Weekend
Congratulations are in order for the new Mr. and Mrs. Flynn. We had a great weekend up in Simsbury, CT for the Flynnewski affair. The bride was stunning, the groom dapper, and the reception was an absolute blast. CONGRATS!!!! We unfortunately forgot our camera at home so I have no photos to post. (he hah, that's for you bean)

I did end up squeezing myself and Cash into the dress that I really wanted to wear, which required Steve's assistance on the zipper, but not the use of pliers. It was just a little snug, but not uncomfortable once I actually had it on.

She knew, but she did not know, BUT SHE KNEW!
We had not yet seen some friends to share our good news with them, so the wedding also provided an opportunity for an in-person guess what! Turns out that friends of the bride and groom, whom we had not yet told, were onto us during the mass! "Jen-soon-to-be-Ben's" later shared that she had looked over during the mass and thought to herself, "I think Kerri is pregnant." They had not yet heard the news, so they monitored drinking behavior at the cocktail hour (water only) and later said she could just tell!

Growth requires some new digs
We stopped at Old Navy on the way home for a couple summer maternity tops to give me and Cash some more room to grow. We also enjoyed looking at little pairs of flip flops, tiny bathing suits, and adorable hats. Next summer the little cashew might have a tiny little suit and will definitely be wearing an adorable little beach hat. It was surreal to even be in the baby section, let alone picking up things and oh'ing and ah'ing.

I have thus far gained between 3 and 4 pounds, depending on the day.

What is Cash up to this week?
Cash has a busy week. Today we are 14 weeks and 2 days. According to my books this week Cash is now about three and a half inches long and weighs about two ounces. His or her neck is complete, and Cash even has fingerprints. He or she is beginning to move around in the amniotic fluid. Fetal movement can occur as early as this week though it is more likely to occur between the 18th to 22nd week. Cash is also practicing "breathing" the amniotic fluid in and out of his/her lungs and now has all 20 teeth formed.


We have our next appointment with the doctor on Monday the 14th. I will be 15 weeks and 2 days at that point. We will likely have another ultrasound during Week 18 according to my preliminary notes from our first appointment.

Bad Parenting


This just made me laugh. Though Steve and I worry that we will be bad parents, nothing we could ever do/not do can compete with losing your children down a drain. Poor duckies.

Letting the cat all the way out of the bag

So yesterday I sat down with my supervisor for our weekly meeting to go over my current cases and talk "strategery." After careful consideration, a lengthy discussion with Steve, and an ever growing pit in my stomach, I shared our big news with the rest of my world...the office

My colleagues were not only supportive, but also enthusiatic and even delighted to learn about Cash. They even threw together an impromptu fiesta complete with cake during our staff meeting. PHEW!

In other news, Tasha and Tony were up for the weekend from Philly. (yay!) We had a great time escaping the heat by holing up in the condo with the A/C blasting. I did force everyone to march down to the center for lunch on both days, SORRY GUYS! It was SO good to see them and we are planning at least one more Pre-Cash visit for the fall/winter. Being in CT is being 2.5 hours closer and we need to really capitalize on that gift!

This weekend is Brian and Erin's wedding! We cannot believe it is already August! Next weekend we'll be out in Saint Louis for Derek and Claire and then just two short weeks later Sean and Courtney tie the knot! I tried on my dress (purchased in May, aka pre-cash awareness) and discovered that it is quite snug, but not uncomfrotably so. I am on the hunt for a simple empire waisted number that my bloat can grow into as the summer creeps on. I have a very strong dislike for dress shopping to begin with, perhaps Cash will make it more fun?

Erin and Brian - enjoy the rest of this week! Saturday is literally just around the corner!!!

Touch this... just touch it!!!

So last night I pulled my lazy butt off the couch to make myself a cup of sleepytime tea (Glorious!) and felt this pressure in my abdomen. Not a pain persay, I certainly didn't yelp or shout, but a seriously strong pressure. I made my way to the kitchen and once there began to press (gently, of course) to see if it was tender to touch or was painful in anyway. Of course by now my blood pressure was rising and I was imagining only worst case scenarios all of which completely terrified me.

So I felt around a bit at this spot, located between my left hip and my lower abdomen about 2 inches or so below my belly button, and noticed that it felt hard, like a lump, but was very smooth. I made Steve touch it. He felt nothing. Perplexed I sat down with the encyclopedia of babydom - what to expect when you are expecting - and discovered that very slender gals might be able to feel the "baby cave" during their 4th month. I am still very full of myself as I now want to be referred to as a "slender gal," but am even more excited that I was able to not only feel and touch the spot where Cash is growing, but also pinpoint his/her location in my body.

There is an "alien" in my body. I instantly wanted to yell down to Cash, "umm hi, I know it is cramped in there, but this is still my body and that is still my abdomen, can you lay off so I can go to bed." But all of that went away when I made Steve try again and he felt itdeclaring this smooth hard lump "wierd" but in a "good way." =)

I verified with Nurse Kiki that all is well and normal and she concurred that it was likely the "baby cave" we were feeling. PHEW!

How INSANE is this --- we can almost feel Cash?! I suspect that in the next few weeks I might even begin to feel movement, being a "slender gal" and all, and I am so excited, and ok I admit it, a bit freaked out by the whole thing... Keep growing Cash!!!! I can take the pressure!

Bump Watch

Pulled from the headlines of US Weekly, we have our own Bump Watch, which lately is more like a "bloat watch."

There is still not a noticeable change in waistline, but some previously snug pants have reached a level of uncomfortable that makes mom-to-be cringe when she thinks about sitting behind her desk all day wearing them.

Today is my first day wearing my Bella Band.
(http://www.bellaband.com/)
Special thanks to Kerry and Erin for telling me about it!!!

I went to put on my most favorite old standby black pants this morning, which I am only slightly ashamed to admit were purchased at the end of my senior year of college, freshly cleaned and pressed. They went on easy, but when buttoned and zipped were quite uncomfortable. Thank the LORD for the Bella Band! I just put it on over the top of my pants and here I am sitting at my desk, pants unbuttoned, with no one the wiser. Since no one here in the office is aware that we have a cashew in our life, this is an even more wonderful thing. The longevity of my secret staying secret is somewhat questionable.

So here are a couple "bloat watch" shots. If nothing else they will serve as a reminder of what my waist previously looked like.













Let's not discuss my puny, bony, pointy elbow =) Why am I more bloated from this angle??