3:41 PM

August what!?

So much has happened since my last attempt at a blog. We have a lot of catching up to do! I guess that's what happens in the world of babies!

I began developing a really bad rash the Week of July 14th. I called my doctor and his nurse told me to just put cortozone on it and they would check it when I came in on the 22nd. I ended up in the ER on the 20th because the rash was really intense and spreading down my legs and up my sides. They finally concluded the cortozone was actually spreading the rash and treated me there- Dr.Grim wasn't on call at the time so I was forced to see the "normal" doctor. Soooooo not fun when you are pregnant.

I finally got in to see Dr. Grim on Tuesday and he freaked out. He was really mad that the nurse didn't pull me in when I called considering my "rashy" past. He immediately put me on modified bed rest and I had to take the rest of the week off work. I had to walk around the whole week in boxers and light t-shirts. I cried at everything. I think they clocked me at 3 or 4 times a day. My poor family did great dealing with me. It's good to be back to work. The week goes faster when I have things to do!

Before I got put on bed rest Brian and I got up bright and early on July 19th and headed down for our birthing class. It was actually a ton of fun and the day went really quick! Brian, of course, was a joker the entire time. When we got down to Lamaze and dealing with the contractions he was amazing! We both really feel we have a lot of techniques to get us through the beginning of labor... at least until we get the epi! The tour was amazing too. I worked at Christ for almost 2 years but I never knew about all the different options available during birth. Brian and I both feel really confident in our choice of hospitals and doctors. We even practice at night sometimes (I can't complain... almost every exercise involves me getting a massage!)

After my long week of rest I finally had my baby shower on Sunday the 27th! It was amazing. I really have no words for how much I appreciate my family. My mom and sister worked so hard the entire week. I never realized how much work is involved. The food was amazing! Of course, Mom always does that amazing... the party platter! The cake was so adorable too. It matched his room perfect! They set up the club house and I really couldn't believe how amazing everything looked. Char and Cody even came down early and helped them set up everything.

Not only did my mom spend a crazy amount on the shower and got us Kaleb's cherry crib but they got us the high chair, bouncy seat and two packs of the special BPA free plastic bottles that we had on our registry. Above and beyond. My parents are always like that! I hope I can be just as amazing to my son as they have been to me and Olivia. The whole pregnancy my mom has been amazing. She has been to every doctor visit, listened to all of my complaints and keeps me motivated. I hope we can avoid a c-section just so she can experience his birth! She deserves it more than anyone!

I don't even know where to start on my amazing friends. Cody and Char really went above and beyond what we ever expected. She actually had to work to get my gift, BRU gave her such a hard time! Cody even assembled the car seat and stroller travel pack and gave us a crash course in how to work it! They even got Brian his own "daddy" gift among other things like our baby monitor. Grandma and Grandpa sprung for the swing we wanted. I was amazed that almost everything came right off our registry. Our house has had a baby explosion! Brian's mom even got us the really expensive bedding that matches his room. We have the most amazing family and friends! I can't wait to use the boppy pillow... only Jessica can understand on this one! I love having a pregnant friend :)

We even crossed over into our last trimester during the hustle! I can't believe it! We have Brian and Jessica's shower for Riley coming up and another shower for baby Kaleb too. August will be done in no time and then the count is really on!

2:27 PM

Wake Up In There!

What a week!

My "grow" day turned into 3 days with little movement. I decided to call Dr.Grim and see what he was up to in there. Holly told me to come in Friday morning and they will just check his heartbeat and everything. So Friday morning my mom and I head off to the doctor's office to gain some reassurance. After finding the heartbeat he decides to try and do the NST (non-stress test) even though it is designed for women around 30+ weeks. He was able to pick him up for a while but did not get the results he wanted and send us straight to the Perinatal Center at Christ Hospital. By this point I was still holding it together... After all, I had just heard him on the monitor.

They take us back and hook me up to the most amazing u/s machine I have ever seen. There were monitors all over the room and instead of just an ultrasound tech, a specialist came in with her. He started telling her things like heart, check for holes, Brain stem... Once he verified everything looked okay they ordered a biophysical profile. Kaleb was laying pretty low and was sleeping away. The told us his estimated weight was 2 pounds 10 ounces already! He's almost a pound over the "normal" for 26 weeks. Yikes. His Brain, kidneys, heart... it all measured at least two weeks ahead. They said I'll have an early baby or gestational diabetes. Let's hope for the early baby. They put me on rest for the weekend.

TaDah hello sweet reaction. I've always been allergic to almost everything. We have to be careful with soap and laundry detergent. I ended up having a pretty bad one this weekend and needed another two days off with doctors checking me. I finally got back to work on Wednesday but my skin feels like it's burnt and the rash hasn't totally cleared up. Let's hope baby gets his dad's dark skin and ability to wash with any soap or take any medication. Darn skin!

On the up side we crossed into the double digits. We have our birthing class this weekend and we have a huge chunky baby. I keep staring at his u/s photo amazed at how much he has grown in the last 4 weeks. I love his little cheeks. I can't believe July is winding down already. We have lots of exciting baby showers coming up. August should be here soon! If you look close you can see his little chunky face. I love it! =)
My friend Rachel had her baby boy this weekend too. I don't have a lot of details but I know he was born on July 12th and they named him Jacob Todd King. Congrats! I can't wait to see my little man. October will be here before you know it!

2:32 PM

The Grow Day

We managed to get through the long weekend without much issue. We are both nearing physical exhaustion! We have been running around so much we barely have time to relax on the weekend. We are going to try and spend time doing nothing but stuff around the house this weekend. We'll see how that goes. We have some major milestones this month. In just 5 days we cross into double digits! I'm so excited. We have our birthing class on the 19th and we are just 2 weeks from crossing into the 3rd trimester! We finally get to have the big baby shower on the 27th of this month. I can't believe it! We are moving right along ;)

I think Tuesday/Wednesday is Kaleb's "grow" day. I read when they are having a growth spurt that they don't move much and sleep during this time. Every Tuesday I get a dull-achy feeling in my lower stomach and he doesn't move much. I still get my counts in but he must be sleeping away! I don't really have any scientific proof that he's growing on this day but it feels right- Mom's tend to know these things too. He's gaining so much weight now... it's all a fat game from here on out. October cannot come fast enough.

On a side note Brian and I fell asleep last night at 5:45 and only got up around 11 to brush our teeth. Pregnancy is so exhausting, for both of us! :)

6:47 PM

Just For Fun

3-year-old tells all from his mother's restroom stall
By Shannon Popkin

My little guy, Cade, is quite a talker. People often comment on how clearly he speaks for a just-turned-3-year-old. And you never have toask him to turn up the volume. It's always fully cranked. They've been several embarrassing times that I've wished the meaning of his words would have been masked by a not-so-audible voice, but never have I wished this more than last week at Costco. Halfway through our shopping trip, nature called, so I took Cade with me into the restroom. If you'd been one of the ladies in the restroom that evening, this is what you would have heard coming from the second to the last stall:

'Mommy, are you gonna go potty? Oh! Why are you putting toiwet paper on the potty, Mommy? Oh! You gonna sit down on da toiwet paper now? Mommy, what are you doing? Mommy, are you gonna go stinkies on the potty?'

At this point I started mentally counting how many women had been in the bathroom when I walked in. Several stalls were full ... 4? 5? Maybe we could wait until they all left before I had to make my debut out of this stall and reveal my identity.

Cade continued, 'Mommy, you ARE going stinkies aren't you? Oh, dats a good girl, Mommy! Are you gonna get some candy for going stinkies on the potty?Let me see doze stinkies, Mommy!Oh ... Mommy! I'm trying to see in dere. Oh! I see dem. Dat is a very good girl, Mommy. You are gonna get some candy! I heard a few faint chuckles coming from the stalls on either side of me. Where is a screaming new born when you need her? Good grief. This was really getting embarrassing. I was definitely waiting a long time before exiting.Trying to divert him, I said, 'Why don't you look in Mommy's purse and see if you can find some candy. We'll both have some!''No, I'm trying to see doze more stinkies. Oh! Mommy!' He started to gag at this point. 'Uh oh, Mommy. I fink I'm gonna frow up. Mommy, dozes tinkies are making me frow up!! Dat is so gross!!' As the gags became louder, so did the chuckles outside my stall.

I quickly flushed the toilet in hopes of changing the subject. I began to reason with myself: OK. There are four other toilets. If I count four flushes, I can be reasonably assured that those who overheard this embarrassing monologue will be long gone. 'Mommy! Would you get off the potty, now? I want you to be done going stinkies! Get up! Get up!' He grunted as he tried to pull me off. Now I could hear full-blown laughter.

I bent down to count the feet outside my door.'Oh, are you wooking under dere , Mommy? You wooking under da door? What were you wooking at, Mommy? You wooking at the wady's feet?' More laughter. I stood inside the locked door and tried to assess the situation.'Mommy, it's time to wash our hands, now. We have to go out now,Mommy.' He started pounding on the door. 'Mommy, don't you want to wash your hands? I want to go out!!'I saw that my 'wait'em out' plan was unraveling. I sheepishly opened the door, and found standing outside my stall, twenty to thirty ladies crowded around the stall, all smiling and starting to applaud.

My first thought was complete embarrassment, then I thought, 'Where's the fine print on the 'motherhood contract ' where I signed away every bit of my dignity and privacy? 'But as my little boy gave me a big, cheeky grin while he rubbed bubbly soap between his chubby little hands, I thought, I'd sign it all away again, just to be known as Mommy to this little fellow.

(Shannon Popkin is a freelance writer and mother of three. She lives with her family in Grand Rapids Michigan , where she no longer uses public restrooms)

I can't wait! I hope everyone has a happy and safe 4th! =)

Counting down to 100 days!