Pregnancy Update: 30 Weeks!

P3171298.jpgBow Back Dress / Leggings / Flats

It’s the final countdown! I am officially into my third trimester and who would have thought I’d hit that marker while halfway around the world in China! Can we talk about the fact that this baby has been to Ireland and China before it has even been born?! Can we also talk about the fact that Mommy managed to make it through all that travelling while pregnant? Because we all know I travel like a moist sandwich – not well at all. 🙂

baby size: a large cabbage
bump size: I have FINALLY gotten to the stage where strangers ask if I’m pregnant – quickly followed by “you’re so tiny for 6 months” :/

symptoms: small bladder issues, swelling
cravings: none

worst part so far: constant nightmares
best part so far: feeling baby kick, getting ready for the baby shower

After my super hungry, super exhausting first trimester, things were starting to look up at the beginning of my second trimester – my appetite slowed, my fatigue almost completely went away and I was exercising again. And then things sort of went downhill a bit. I have been sick on and off almost my entire second trimester. Not morning sickness sick, just good ol’ sick.

If you have never been sick while pregnant, let me just tell you… pregnancy sick = man cold. The smallest sniffle makes you feel like your head is about to explode and just getting off the couch to use the bathroom is like breaking every bone in your body. Oh and the best part? Wait. That’s not quite the best part yet. The second best part is that a little cold that would’ve taken you two or three days to get over before you got pregnant now takes one or two weeks to get over. The absolute best part is every time you cough or sneeze you pee a little. Awesome.

The next person to get me sick is dead. Honest.

Baby Size + Bump Size
The baby is now the size of a large head of cabbage and weighs about 3 pounds. We just had a growth ultrasound the Thursday before last – baby is perfectly normal and already head down. I am also proud to announce that our baby has hair! We were able to see it on the ultrasound and my husband is relieved that the baby “has my hair genes”. 🙂

A few weeks ago we went out to our favorite all you can eat sushi and hibachi place and after we got up to leave our waitress asked if I was pregnant and how many months along I was. Being me, I absolutely wanted to respond with a “no, this is just sushi” snip, but I refrained. All in all, she was obviously very excited for us. 🙂

One thing I quickly noticed being pregnant (especially as my due date grows nearer and my belly grows bigger), is that no matter how you look, how you or baby are doing or who you are, apparently you are NEVER the right size while pregnant. You’re either too big or too little for whatever stage pregnant you are. I have heard so many people comment over the years about “she can’t be seven months, she’s going to pop any moment” or “she’s already so big”, but in my case everyone is saying the exact opposite – “there’s no way you’re six months, you’re so little”.

First of all, I don’t feel little – I’m twentyish pounds heavier than I was, so I guess before getting pregnant I was miniscule – and secondly, maybe telling a first time mom that she’s “too little for her stage” is going to cause her some undue anxiety about if she really is too little and if her baby is ok. Luckily, I have a very supportive husband who completely agrees and understands that I do not need to pack on 40 pounds to give birth to a perfectly healthy baby. And furthermore, none of my doctors (of which I think I  have seen six in total because the office feels the need for me to meet every single doctor they have in case my regular doctor is not the doctor on call the day I go into labor) has said a single word about my weight gain. If they’re not concerned, I’m not concerned and neither should anyone else. 🙂

Symptoms + Cravings
My bladder has apparently gotten to the size where it can only hold about a tablespoon. Every twenty minutes it’s, “oh my god, I have to go NOW” and I only go a little bit. Literally the most frustrating thing ever.

Swelling hasn’t been a huge deal yet. I do swell occasionally; even in my compression socks, my feet were so swollen after our flights to and from Beijing that I couldn’t get my shoes back on. Worse yet, when I got off the plane from Chicago to Baltimore my calves literally felt like they were going to rip through my skin and they were very noticeably large. Nothing some elevated foot time couldn’t fix.

Cravings haven’t been a big thing at all lately. I have had a couple spurts of my pregnancy hunger coming back but nothing like the first couple weeks I was pregnant.

Worst + Best Parts
Although it has subsided a bit now, for a good two months or so I was having nightmares every single night. You know, the kind where you wake up and you’re covered in cold sweat and really don’t want to go back to sleep in case you slip right back in to the same nightmare. Yeah. Daily. No bueno.

The best part is still feeling the baby kick. It’s actually the point where I can feel the baby doing rolls in my tummy and it tickles, making me jump every now and then. 🙂 The second best part, is that invitations have gone out for my baby shower and that means we are getting close! Plans for the baby shower are well under way and I swear I feel like an eight year old waiting for Christmas morning – I’m stalking my registry to see what’s been bought and I can barely contain myself. Less than three weeks until I’m in baby bliss, hanging out with my family and friends, opening cute little baby gifts and chowing down on some well deserved Costco cake. 🙂

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Fashion & Beauty

Maternity Memorial Outfit





OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERABodycon Dress (wearing XS/S) / Derby Hat / Pearl Studs similar here / Heels similar here

This past Saturday was my grandmother’s memorial service. Her passing still doesn’t seem like reality to me; I keep wanting to pick up the phone and dial her number and it always takes me a minute or two to remember that she’s not there to pick up.

My outfit was well received – I was constantly being that so and so loved my hat and where did I get it and that I looked so good for being six months pregnant. The dress itself has been worn to so many functions since I bought it. For reference, I’m wearing an XS/S – the same size I was wearing before becoming pregnant – so I highly recommend it for your next staple piece.

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toms ware 3 HEELS PEARLS black derby hat




We’re Back From…

I haven’t taken the photos from the trip off my camera and this was the best phone photo. :/


This isn’t going to be a detailed post as my brain is super foggy from 46 hours travel time and jet lag – I’ll go into more detail about why it took us so long to get back in my upcoming China travel post – but I figured an update is in order.

China itself was a mix of huge ups and really low downs and while I can’t say that I love China or that I’d ever really want to go back, I am glad that we went and got to experience most things we did. We saw the Summer Palace, ate some amazing food (and some not so amazing food 😦 ) and, by some miracle, were able to hike a portion of the Great Wall with me being six months pregnant. I’m sure our mothers’ will scold the hell out of me when they find out and see pictures of the death stairs I had to climb crawl up. And I literally mean crawl.

To round off the post, I’d like to mention that we split our time in China between Beijing and Qingdao and I’ll be doing a full write up of our trip details some time in the coming week or so if you’re interested. Another huge detail about our trip is that while we were there I officially entered my third trimester, so be on the lookout for a pregnancy update post in the next few days! 🙂

All in all, my husband and I are happy to be home with some more travel experience and some really cool souvenirs.

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Fashion & Beauty

Maternity Travel Outfit



OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERASweatpants (wearing size S) / Tee Shirt / Cardigan similar here / Shoes

We are going on an adventure! Where to? Stop by in a week or so and find out! 🙂

Although I won’t reveal our destination quite yet, I will reveal that we’re getting on another overnight plane ride. The first time I had an overnight flight, we were headed to Ireland about four months ago. Although I was pregnant at the time, I was not 6 months pregnant!

For this trip I opted to go with loose sweats instead of my typical leggings. Why? Because I’m 6 months pregnant, swollen and this is a longer flight. As always, I’m wearing my super hot compression socks underneath all this and am bringing my favorite cardigan to keep me warm.

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hanes sweats  BLACK TEE gray cardigan chunky bobs

Fashion & Beauty

Thrift Haul


Todays’ thrift haul is a bit different than usual. It’s all baby clothes! 🙂

As I have stated before, I am a very picky person and things are no different when it comes to baby things. I prefer simple to over the top and I have a really hard time justifying $8 for a brand new three piece outfit that my baby may get one or two wears out of before they outgrow it.

I have been a very busy bee stalking the area thrift stores for baby clothes and toys for a fraction of the cost of regular retail. I know prices vary from area to area, but where I live baby clothes are $0.50 a piece. Not just onesies and hats. Jumpers, overalls and coats are $0.50 too!

This haul is what I picked up in one week and only spent $19! I have been picking up boys, girls and gender neutral clothes since we won’t know what we’re having until D-Day.

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Fashion & Beauty

26 Facts For My 26th Birthday!




OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAGray Sweater similar here / Levi’s 535 Super Skinny Jeans in Mid Roast / Earrings

Today is my 26th birthday! It’s hard to believe that 26 years ago my mom was just welcoming me into the world as her first child – about the same age as I will be when I deliver my first in May.

In honor of my birthday, I decided to do a little list of 26 random facts all about me. It’s my birthday and that’s ok. Right? 🙂

1. I share my birthday with my great, great grandfather who was born February 17th in 1887.

2. I won the departmental award for Creative Writing in my senior year of high school.

3. I want a grand total of six kids.

4. I have an anatomical variation – air pockets in my nasal membranes.

5. I prefer red grapes to white grapes, white grape juice to red and hate everything grape flavored.

6. I collect sand from every beach I go to.

7. The Wheel of Time is my favorite book series of all time.

8. I jump at every opportunity to plan and host parties; it’s just something I happen to be insanely good at. 🙂

9. I have a (my husband would say creepy) knack for being able to remember and recite entire portions of Disney movies.

10. Until I met my husband I had never eaten at Taco Bell.

11. I get insanely car sick but never have a problem on roller coasters.

12. My favorite red wine is Roscato Rosso Dolce (you can buy it at Walmart for about $10) and my favorite white is Moscato d’Asti (any brand will do!).

13. My dad has given me multiple nicknames over the years which include: Half pint, Stinker, Tadpole and the current name, Leapchion. On the other hand, my sisters’ nickname has and will always be Booger.

14. I still cannot sleep in the dark without my husband – I’m not afraid of the dark, I’m afraid of what I can’t see in the dark.

15. Almost my entire basement is my couponing stockpile.

16. The Outer Banks is one of my most favorite places of all time, anywhere.

17. I am afraid of ladybugs being on me.

18. I was so quiet in school, my 4th grade teacher nicknamed me “Loud Mouth Laura”. In 8th grade, a teacher nicknamed me “Smiley” because I was so shy and never did; he still calls me that to this day and even nicknamed my little sister “Smiley Jr”.

19. I have never gotten pulled over or received a ticket.

20. I have only ever had two jobs; a cashier at Burger King while in high school and working at a local jewelry store buying and selling gold and silver right out of high school.

21. Jedi Mind Trick is my favorite at home cocktail – I make mine with milk instead of half and half.

22. I spend at least an hour (probably more) every day browsing recipe blogs and looking at houses on Zillow. (Literally born to be a stay at home mom. 🙂 )

23. I HATE the taste of water, so I typically drink Crystal Light instead.

24. I have had 13 teeth removed – most were adult teeth, a few were baby teeth and 4 were wisdom teeth.

25. I LOVE to do genealogy research. Something about the smell of old books and weeding through papers just makes me giddy – maybe I should’ve been a librarian.

26. I can sleep anywhere, anytime, mouth open and everything. 🙂

So there you have it! I’ve got a busy birthday planned – FREE breakfast at Denny’s, lunch (and cracklin’s) at Grannys’ and pizza and Costco cake with my immediate family for dinner. Can we just talk about the food I get to eat today?! 🙂


gray sweater MID ROAST stick earrings

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Fashion & Beauty

Honoring My Grandmothers’ Life


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Earlier this week, on January 22nd, my family lost its matriarch; my grandfather lost the love of his life, my mother lost her mother and I lost a very close grandmother who will never get to meet the baby I’m carrying – a baby she was so very excited to meet.

I’m not confident in my ability to accurately depict the immensely incredible life she lived and it’s getting harder to type every word as I’m constantly wiping tears from my face, but I’ll do my best.

My grandmother was one of twelve siblings and married my grandfather right out of high school. Together they had five biological children and adopted two additional kids when I was about three. She worked odd jobs throughout her life; I most distinctly remember her working at a local bakery and then serving as a lunch lady when I was in elementary school and into early middle school. Sometime after that, she retired and took to babysitting her grandchildren and neighborhood kids.

Some of best memories of my grandmother are lazy summer days with her. During the summer, she would pick us up for the free movie days at the theater, we’d get pizza, go back to her house and spend the rest of the day in the pool. Even as we grew older, my now husband would spend some days poolside with me and my younger siblings.

At 4’10” and 100 pounds soaking wet, my grandmother was a little ball of fire that I’m sure most people did not expect. She had a get it done attitude, but a playfulness that made even the most tedious tasks lighter and upbeat. That same get it done attitude also landed her in some rough spots over the years. For example, the week before her surprise 50th anniversary part she started a bonfire on her property with gasoline – little to her knowledge she was standing too close and ended up in the hospital with some 2nd degree burns and no eyebrows. Even through all her trials, she always remained strong and upbeat with a passion for life I have only ever seen in one other person.

What no one tells you when someone passes is that the little details you remember about that person are the memories you’ll hold most dear and pull at your heart the hardest. When we were little, she’d used to tell us “pizza crusts make your eyelashes grow” and “the bruises on bananas make you beautiful” – I obviously have reservations on the validity of those statements, but I know I’ll be repeating them to my own children.

My grandmother lived a beautiful life, loved and is loved by so many people. Before she passed, she told the nurse at the hospital that she “had a beautiful house with a beautiful bedroom with sunlight coming in” and that’s where she wanted to go. Grandma got her wish, passing away peacefully in her beautiful house, surrounded by the people who love her.

Even though she’s gone, her legacy lives on in her husband, 7 children (5 biological and 2 adopted), 10 grandchildren and 6 great-grandchildren (with an additional 3 on the way). Although I feel like 25 years with my grandmother was not enough, I am grateful for the time I got with her. She will forever be in my heart and in the hearts of those who loved her.

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