26 weeks and random events.

no chalkboard pic this week.  we'll have to settle for this mirror pic because jake just wasn't around when i needed the pic.
14 more weeks of growth?  i'm scared.
inanimate comparisoni couldn't find this info. any more.  i guess the baby has outgrown the size of any common vegetable.  but, he/she weighs about two pounds now!
maternity clothes? oh yes.
stretch marks? none yet!  please...stay away!
sleep: lots of tossing.  lots of turning.  lots of peeing.
best moment this week:  coming home to a perfectly painted nursery!!  and also seeing family for my grandma's 80th.  she gave me a little something special for the nursery [see below].
miss anything? bending.
movement:  non stop and very low.
food cravings:  nothing specific.
anything making you queasy or sicknot lately.
gender: still a surprise.  the survey has favored girl up until now.  boy is winning.
labor signs:  i would not consider them labor signs [i hope] but i get some sort of charlie horse feeling really low every now and then.  or...maybe that's a contraction.  these are questions for my doc on thursday.
symptoms:  my back hates me.  see the picture above and the dip in my lower back?  ya, i think that's why.
belly button in or out?  in.  for now...teetering on being out.
wedding rings on or off?  on...but sort of bugging me lately.
 happy or moody most of the time: happy, with moments of tearfulness.  mainly because i just want to be a home-body lately.
looking forward to: hearing a heartbeat on thursday.  working on the nursery more.  putting together a crib!! 

here are some pics of the nursery and other random events...

oh, p.s....congrats to mr. menz on his promotion at work!! 
 just in time for baby.  super proud!

the pic doesn't show the true paint color.  there is more green to it.  this shows up very gray.
my mom gave me that hope chest for my graduation.  trying to decide if it stays in the nursery.
my grandma had this handmade rocking horse in one of the rooms at her townhouse for as long as i can remember.  we used to play on it and when i was there for her birthday, she offered it to me.  i l.o.v.e. it!!
another angle.  not sure of the room set-up yet.
my gorgeous aunts and my dad with my grandma.
'80 reasons why we love you'.  the cutest book, created by my aunt gigi.  and that woman, my grandma, does not have a mean bone in her body.  she's the sweetest lady in the world.  no joke.
yep.  i parked there...for the first time.
i had my first o'doole's on the trip.  it tasted like beer.  i can't say that i really miss beer.


scooch on over organs...baby on board

i took a road trip with my parents this weekend to visit MI for my gramma's 80th bday [another post later].  the 9 hour car rides and lots of walking  brought on some interesting new aches and pains; particularly in my ribs and back.

so, on my car ride home today, i decided to google what exactly happens to our organs as the baby grows.  i came across this interesting link.  it really is pretty amazing.  no wonder we feel full, always have to pee, get heartburn, can't breathe and have general aches and pains!! 

....but, we'd do it again!

[i can't help but think of my friend abbey over at life treasured, who had three in there...or kate+8 with six!]

26 week post and pics soon!


mr. sandman.

any dream interpreters out there?  i've had two odd dreams... that i can remember:

dream a.  i'm in my car and i'm driving.  don't worry....the baby is just laying in my lap, facing me [mom of the century, i know].  i can see every feature and he looks like jake.  with lots of hair.  it was very vivid.  i just kept driving.  not sure where i was going.  no sign of a carseat.

dream b.  the baby just appeared one day.  no labor.  no delivery.  no c section.  nothing.  again, a boy.  i was convinced he wasn't mine because no one could prove that he came out of me.  plus, i still had a bump.  not a huge one.  but a bump.  he was born right about now (25 weeks...way too early) but he was perfectly healthy and h u g e.  big!  and, this time, he looked just like me.  i mean, exactly.  so, i guess that's how i knew he was mine??

so questions....did any moms out there have gender dreams, before they knew the sex?  and how much more odd did the dreams get?  don't get me wrong, i'd love for baby to come without labor.  but, i don't think that reflects reality.  obviously, neither does the no carseat dream.  ;) 

i'm headed off for a trip to MI for my grandma's 80th bday!  80 years!!  yes, i'm bringing two pillows.  yes, i'm bringing a wedge.  and, yes, i'm bringing the baby's sound machine.  i'm determined to keep up my good sleep.  maybe these conditions will bring on some more crazy dreams.  keep ya posted.



frump in the trunk.

if i were being honest ... i would say that i haven't exactly felt "beautiful" lately.

some say that they've never felt more attractive than when they were pregnant.  don't get me wrong ... i love being pregnant, but do i feel like i look better than ever?  not exactly.  the most difficult thing about pregnancy ... i'd have to say, for me, is getting used to the changes in my body. 

i wasn't a freak about working out pre-pregnancy, but i did pretty well.  i loved going to step class [which is an excellent workout] and i made myself "move" at least 4-5 times a week.  cut to ... 6 weeks in to my pregnancy, when i learned i had a hemorrhage.  my doctor told me not to do any strenuous activity [or basically anything that would cause me to break a sweat].  was she being a little conservative?  ...yes, she admitted it.  but with my previous miscarriage paired with the possible implications of a sub-chorionic hemorrhage ... she wasn't taking any chances and neither was i!  with that said, i really didn't move my body as much as i'd hoped to.  then, by the time it was "safe" to, i was afraid it actually wouldn't be safe to just dive right back into my old routine.  so...walking it was, for me.

here's the catch:  i feel better when i walk but my back hates me for it.  by the end of a 2 mile walk around the neighborhood, it feels like my lower back is caving in on itself.  stretching does help though.

so...with feeling a little extra frumpy lately, it has been difficult to get dressed and feel cute.  this, paired with winter white arms and legs just makes me want to get a spray tan.  i live for summer tans and sun-dresses.  and, this year, i may not get much of either.  this leads me to the frumpy maternity look... which i am bound and determined to avoid.

don't get me wrong, maternity clothes sure have come a long way from muumuus and tent dresses with large bows [was that their attempt at distracting from the tent-look?].

 so here are a few of my tips for maternity-wear:

1.  form fitting is best to say bye bye to frump [target has some great 'long and lean' tanks that aren't actually maternity but are great for layering] - $8
2.  the regular old maxi dress is a life-saver [especially if you haven't gotten a tan yet!]  i live in maxi dresses, so even non-maternity maxis work if the length is right
3.  i love the full panel pants...they actually give the belly support
4.  old navy maternity, gap maternity and mama by h&m have been life savers!!
5.  long tops are good because they hug and don't threaten to show your pants panel or bare belly hanging out the bottom

and finally......i'm, sort of, dreading pool season and i've been drooling over bikinis that i can't buy.  i could brave it like my friend, marge, and bare belly at the pool, but i don't think i have it in me.  kudos to her [and her 5'8'' frame and model legs] though.  so, instead, i've purchased a "stylish" one-piece from kohl's.  let's face it...i will not be small by then.  come memorial weekend, you can find my wading in the waters of the neighborhood pool in this bad boy that rivals any bikini found on the cover of sports illustrated.

thst's hot.




i'm blogging from panera right now...because march madness has taken over my house.  right now, there are four t.v.s broadcasting basketball throughout the menz residence and all of jake's best buddies are shouting at them.

am i complaining?  not really.  i get a day to treat myself:  have lunch alone (which i never do), shop around for baby stuff and just...be.

but i wanted to share a pic of the glider, which came friday.  the delivery service had me on lock-down with a time frame of 12-3.  and when did they show?...about 2:45.  but, again...am i complaining?  no.  i had an excuse to catch up on dvr.  oh ... and clean the house ... for jake's party ... top to bottom.

i have to thank my mom for this generous gift and addition to the nursery.  it is so perfect and increadibly comfy.  i c a n ' t  w a i t to rock a little menz to sleep in this chair.  thanks, mom.

with a paint sample.  i'm going to love it, i know!
 and i will leave you with this picture of my hunk of a nephew.  
i mean...could rolls be any cuter?  no.  no way.



24 weeks (and then some)...

sorry about not being very punctual with updates.  this week was a doozy at work.  it's the end of the quarter and allllll of my data was due! so, technically...i am 24 weeks and 4 days.

inanimate comparison: about the length of a large ear of corn.  apparently, baby will double its weight this month.  let's hope that's not the same for me!
maternity clothes? oh yes.
stretch marks? none yet!  please...stay away!
sleep: i definitely toss and turn a bit more.  i wake up on my back a lot.  not sure why because i don't even find it comfortable.  i am most comfortable on my left side with my wedge (thanks to tara) under my bump or wedged under my back.
best moment this week: starting paint on the nursery...even if it was just the primer!  and...i think we officially have a boy name!  girl, not so much.
miss anything? bending with ease.  shaving with ease and getting in and out of bed with ease.  so, basically, anything involving bending.
movement: all.of.the.time.  this is the best part about pregnancy.  both jake and i can feel a lot more fluid motion, as opposed to kicks and bumps.  it's sort of a nightly ritual.  also...something interesting...my email from what.to.expect today said that if jake lays his head on my belly, at this point, he should be able to hear the baby's heartbeat?  anyone ever experience this?
food cravings: i haven't allowed myself to make rice krispies because there are thin mints in the house!  aside from cottage cheese with peaches, i will get an idea in my head...have to have it...then i'm over it.
anything making you queasy or sicknot lately.
gender: still a surprise.
labor signs: way too early! 
symptoms: reflux, sciatic pain is back, lots of low pressure and a case of the sleepies
belly button in or out?  in.  for now.
wedding rings on or off?  on...
 happy or moody most of the time: happy.
looking forward to: getting my glider friday.  and getting the paint finished in the nursery!!  i got my paint sample today [silver sage] from restoration hardware and it is p.e.r.f.e.c.t.!!  we're going to have sherwin williams color match because that's the paint our guy uses.  i can not wait to see it all finished!

ick.  so not a good pic of me but jake had to get back to basketball, ya know...
and a close up side angle.


darndest things...

i was working with a speech group of 3rd grade boys, when this conversation occured:

students will be labeled as s1, s2 and s3

...i wish i could have recorded this just to get the full effect with all the articulation errors scattered throughout.  none of these boys can say their /r/, among other sounds.

s1:  mrs. menz, do you know yet what that is [pointing to my belly]
me:  this?  it's a baby.
s1:  i know.  but do you know if it's a boy or girl?
me:  no, it's a surprise.
[s2 and s3 looking at me confused]
s1:  but can you know now?
me:  yes, but we did not find out.
s1:  that's weird.
me:  welp....
s2:  hold on, are you telling me your preggers?
me:  yes, sir, what did you think this was? [pointing to my belly]
s2:  i don't know, i didn't notice. {typical male}
me:  yep.  that's a baby.
s3:  how do they get out of there anyway?
s2:  [picks up a wooden pizza cutter, holds it up] duh, they cut it out of your belly.
s3:  [makes cutting sound as he gestures that he's cutting across his stomach]
s1:  no, they don't all come out that way [getting red-faced...his mom just had a baby].
s2:  well, then how else do they come out?
me:  that's something you need to talk to your parents about.
s2:  but they won't tell me.
me:  well, we can't talk about that right now.  we have speech work to do.
s3:  do you have any idea how bad that will hurt? [using the pizza cutter to slice across his stomach].
me:  ...and i think it's time for specials, boys.  time to go!


more face time

so i didn't exactly reveal that, at my 18 week ultrasound, the sonographer was unable to see certain anatomy...or more specifically, very important parts of the heart.  when the doctor told me this at the follow up appointment, i heard "heart" and "unable to find" and the rest just tuned to babble, like "wah wah wah".  so i'm not even sure what it was that couldn't be seen and i'm glad i didn't know because i certainly would have gone home and gotten google happy [or sad].  regardless, doc assured me that it was most likely too early to see what they needed to see or the baby's position wasn't ideal for viewing.

so [oh darn] i got a bonus ultrasound.  yay!  and, as it turns out...everything is there.  right where it should be.  praise the lord.

some facts:
baby is measuring right at about 22.5 weeks (right on target)
baby weighs approximately 1 lb 3 oz (yay...i have a 1 lb baby!!)
my belly is measuring right on too
i did not look at the scale 
i have a new found obsession with cottage cheese
oh....and rice krispy treats.
next u/s is at 32 weeks!!!

[some of these are similar pics with minor little differences.]

oh, hi.

i love that belly.  weird how different the profile can look.
from left: abdomen, knobby knees, shins, feet.  you decide what might be in the middle.

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