Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Baby Bean Update: 34 (point five) Weeks

My parents and brother spent the weekend here for Memorial Day, so I didn't get to do a baby update! I'm so glad they came, though, and left my brother. Now I have someone here with me other than Little S while Husband's at work all day. It's good to have that security in case of an emergency! I became 34 weeks pregnant on Saturday, May 26, and today's May 29! That means ONE MONTH until d-day at the latest!
top: c/o maurices, jeans: Motherhood, sandals: Fergie
4.5 weeks. 4.5. weeks. 4.5 weeks. 
Apparently in that last photo, that's all I'm thinking. I definitely forgot to smile. Sorry 'bout that. Also, Readers, meet my Summer Hair. Summer Hair, Readers. I don't blow-dry in 100% humidity. Because, really, that's just dumb. I'm sorry if you choose to fight that battle, but I have wavy, frizzy, baby-fine hair and it's a super huge pain to dry it and have it go all lioness on me within 10 minutes.
So, 34 weeks... Let's see what we're working with, here. Back pain, pelvic pain, lots of contractions, my tummy is SO TIGHT that I feel like it's going to rip open, sciatica in both legs, but mostly the left one, numbness in my left elbow/forearm/wrist (pregnancy-induced carpal tunnel), and major feet swellage... on the other hand, though, I'm feeling happy, hopeful, uplifted, and almost (alllmost) ready. Can't ask for more than that!
Exciting news: Check out Mommy Moxie on Etsy!
I have some awesome things to show you at the end of this week and a fun giveaway coming on Monday!
Don't forget that if you place an order with Bitty Bug Designs through June 15, 50% of the proceeds will be donated to the Fund for Officer James Winslow!

Friday, May 25, 2012

My Mom is Blogging This

While Heather, of Blonde Undercover Blonde, was pregnant, she pinned the cutest little screen-printed onesie that says, "My mom is blogging this." I knew I had to have one for Bean because, let's be real... I'm going to be blogging it. Here's the original inspiration that I repinned from Heather.
image via Pinterest
Luckily, my MIL works in an embroidery shop where they also do a bit of screen printing. She was able to make a similar onesie for little Bean and I think it's absolutely hysterical. I gave her a piece of lace trim that I liked for color-matching and she brought it back with enormous block letters and sparkles that they've been using for printing on things for a local cheerleading squad. I was just going to ruffle the bum of the onesie, but couldn't stop myself and did a three-tier tutu around it. And what obnoxiously funny onesie with ruffles would be complete without a matching headband? On it.
 I really adore this little headband. It only took a few minutes to toss it together and you can see the stitching in the gathers, so obviously if I was going to give this to someone, I would have been more careful. I was just too excited and wanted to get it done! I can't wait to show you a picture of Bean wearing this ensemble... and I especially can't wait to see/hear people's reactions about the blogging thing. Some people will probably think it's funny. Most probably won't understand. You guys will, though. That's what matters, anyway.
Thanks to my MIL for printing this adorable onesie for us! 

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Pink Jelly Shoes!

Yesterday, I had to run some errands and decided I'd feel a lot better if I got out of my ginormous gouchos (I promise I only wear them around the house) and ragged tank top. While searching through my closet, I found this gem of a top that my friends bought for me when I was pregnant with S. I'm so glad it peeked through all the random clothes I can't fit into right now because it also gave me the opportunity to wear my new jelly shoes from Happy Scarf! I never thought I'd want to wear jelly shoes, considering I totally missed the wagon in the 90s and never wore them when they were in style then. However, when I checked them out online, they looked so roomy and airy... and flat. Those all seemed like very necessary details in a shoe while I'm 8-9-10 months pregnant this summer.
You'll have to excuse my pictures. I'm just not the girl who can take her own photos and have good quality. It's an art I don't have time to perfect. This is why Husband takes all of my weekend photos.
 top: Liz Lange Maternity for Target, jeans: Motherhood, jellies: c/o Happy Scarf, earrings: c/o Scarlet Samples
My new shoes were as expected- fit perfectly with a little bit of room to swell (ahem) and VERY light and airy. I was afraid they'd be sweaty, but they totally weren't! The only thing I was a bit disappointment in was the color. I thought they would be more nude like on the website, but they really are a pale pinkish purple hue. I'm okay with that since I have plenty of pink, but I was just hoping for something I could wear with everything!
Don't forget to enter the Bitty Bug Designs giveaway on Blonde Undercover Blonde!
And please visit yesterday's post about our friend, Officer James Winslow. See what you can do to help!

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Bitty Bug Designs for Care of Officer James Winslow

There are days when an outfit post or shop update just won't cut it. Today is one of those days. I have a very pressing matter to discuss and although I am not able to help on my own, this might give us ALL a chance to make a difference.
Please see donation opportunities at the bottom of this post.
Our friend, Neil (left) and his brother and best friend, Officer James Winlsow (right)

The younger brother of one of mine and Husband's dear friends is a police officer in Suffolk, Virginia. Young, fairly new to the profession, and hot off the newlywed bandwagon, James Winslow has been nothing but a sweet, Southern, dedicated gentleman since we met. He forcefully followed his dream to become a police officer and is a wonderful one. Unfortunately, with that territory, comes the high risk of danger. Fearlessly, Officer James Winslow "responded to a call around 8:26 a.m. (on Saturday, May 19) for a stolen vehicle when he chased (Joseph) Staton into a wooded area. Once he was in the woods, Staton reportedly used a blunt object to strike Officer Winslow in the face, where he suffered serious head injuries as well as injuries to his arms.
"When additional police officers responded to the scene, they found the assaulted officer lying unconcious. Winslow was flown by Nightingale to Sentara Norfolk General Hospital where he remains in critical condition at this time." - WAVY News 10
More of the story can be found here.
Suspect, Staton, found.
Officer Winlsow has undergone intensive surgery and is stable and recovering. We don't know how long he'll be in the hospital, but we do know that he will be recovering and out of work for quite a while. The Suffolk Police Officers Local 780 have set up a fund to help during this period of time for Officer James Winlsow and his wife, Sarah. Because I am unable to send a chunk of helpful money to donate to this fund, I thought about it for a while, and figured I could open the opportunity up to everyone possible. We can help Officer Winslow and his family through this TOGETHER. I am contacting 31 of my fellow bloggers to see if they will participate in spreading the word. You can also blog about this or share the link to this post on your Facebook page. 

50% of ALL proceeds from now until June 15 will be mailed via check to -
Fund for Officer James Winslow
Monarch Bank
2999 Corporate Lane
Suffolk, VA 23434
ATTN: Suffolk Police Officers, in c/o Officer James Winslow
If you would like to send a donation, please write "Officer James Winslow" in the memo line.
Please grab this button for your sidebar so you can help spread the word!
A Little Bit of This
To make a purchase and donate to the Fund for Officer James Winslow, please visit Bitty Bug Designs on Facebook and either send me an email: kimberly.s.parham@gmail.com OR a message through the facebook page. Items in the shop are ready-to-ship, unless otherwise noted. EVERYTHING can be custom-ordered. Choose a fabric from the swatches album or send a special request.

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Little French Braid

I want someone to tell me when my little girl got big enough for a French braid.
This show is running too quickly.

Don't forget to enter for a chance to win a set of custom burp cloths for your baby or as a gift!
Head to Blonde Undercover Blonde and enter the giveaway by clicking the button below!

Monday, May 21, 2012

Bitty Bug Designs Shop Update!

My fingers might fall off from all the sewing I've been doing, recently. But I'm absolutely loving running Bitty Bug Designs! I've only had a handful of orders, but am glad to be getting some items out into the community to get feedback and hopefully some word-of-mouth recommendations! I just wanted to share some of the new things that are going on!
Here are a few of the new fabric swatches for custom orders! I also have several solid flannels to back these prints. Please don't forget! If you have a special fabric request, I will do my best to go out and find it for you! Don't be afraid to request something that you don't see in the shop!
 This is a custom cloth wipe order that was fulfilled last week! I love them so much. I can't wait to get some more done for my girls! S uses them for #1s and I just wash them every other day. Super simple and such a big money saver! And since I'll be cloth diapering Miss Bean, this is the obvious option for us. All natural and saving money? Can't wait!
 And this is probably my proudest moment (just not my proudest photos). I made my first nursing cover and it turned out so much better than expected! This is for my cousin who's having a little boy in early September (I think!). She already came and picked it up and I think she loved it! With full coverage, boning around the neckline so you can see baby, but no one else can see you, little flannel pockets for wiping baby's mouth or storing nursing pads/pacifiers, and an adjustable D-ring neck strap, you really can't go wrong! This cover sells for an affordable $25 as opposed to the more expensive (and very similar in design) options you may find in stores.
Check out Bitty Bug Designs for your little one or affordable shower gifts for a friend or family member! Spread the word and help this SAHM get the business going so I can continue to SAH! 
Please and thank you, of course.

Thank you, Crystal, for hosting the first Bitty Bug Designs giveaway last week! I'm so glad we have a winner! Congratulations, Vicki!
This week, we have a great giveaway going on at my sweet friend Heather's blog, Blonde Undercover Blonde! She's giving away a pack of two custom burp cloths! Be sure to check back with the shop frequently this week, because burp cloth designs are changing drastically and will have fuller coverage for mom and baby! They'll be much cuter, too!

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Baby Bean Update: 33 Weeks

Let's face it. I'm not that fabulous mom-to-be who is going to get up each morning and get dressed to run my one errand before cleaning the house, snap a photo of the cute dress I wore for 25 minutes, and write a post about it. Nope. I'm the mom-to-be (and current mom of a 3-year-old) that wears yoga pants and my husband's t-shirts most days because my toddler doesn't care as long as I get on the floor and play with her. I'm lucky if I can get up when we're done (I usually sit against the sofa for the back support and to have something as a crutch to help me up). I look forward to the weekends because I honestly feel like I have a reason to put in the effort to look cute. And for church this morning, I promise I looked a lot cuter than I do right now.
Right now, exhibit A: Same dress I wore to church, sans shoes, make-up, contacts, and jewelry. Add a dash of contractions and pelvic floor pain with excruciating back pain and this is what we have.
dress: Motherhood

So, we're 33 weeks and 1 day into this little game and one of the other pregnant ladies at church this morning said, "Looks like you had a growth spurt over the last week just like I did!" For the first time, I wasn't offended with someone commenting on my size. I feel like a flipping house. And my body feels like a house that's slowly being broken down.
At 33 weeks pregnant with Bean, I am exhausted, having new back pains (higher up in the rib area), tense, have balloon feet and cankles, want to drink 8 gallons of water a day, still can't eat enough watermelon (and now, cantaloupe), have gained a whopping 20 lbs (UGH... so upset about that), have wonderful blood pressure, am having contractions almost every day that scare me to death, can barely reach my toes to paint them, have a hard time sleeping, and still haven't painted the nursery. 
Bean and I also had a big scare on Friday (32 weeks, 6 days). It started Thursday night when I was having some contractions that were less uncomfortable and more painful that my usual Braxton Hicks. I took it really easy and even propped my feet up at bible study (those girls take care of me). When I got home, I was having quite a bit of pain and went straight to bed after drinking a huge hospital mug of water (30 oz). I woke up the next morning with really bad pain in my pelvis and my inner thighs. It all felt like bone pain... very strange. I took it easy Friday morning, but each time I got up to do something like fold laundry or do dishes, I started feeling the contractions, again. I finally decided to call my OB after 4 painful contractions in an hour. She ordered me to go to the hospital and check into Labor and Delivery triage. So, I packed a small bag for S and I, called my husband, and we all met at the hospital. I was crying the entire time I was trying to find a parking space because I was afraid I was in preterm labor. After 5 hours of observation, my midwife concluded that my contractions were coming, but they weren't strong and weren't causing me to dilate at all. We had an ultrasound and Bean looks good, her fluid is perfect, and guess what... She's not breech anymore. Maybe a lot of the pains I was having were due to her flipping around. 
Anyway, I'm supposed to take it easy, keep my feet propped up, and of course call if I have any other symptoms. I really have been doing just about nothing and once again, my house is getting into a state that I highly dislike. But for Bean's and my health, I really do have to just suck it up right now. If you read my VBAC vs. Repeat C-Section dilemma, it was made even more confusing after discussing the option with my midwife on Friday. And honestly, the more I read, the more stressed out I get. I watched "The Business of Being Born," as suggested by some moms I talk to in a facebook group. That was of no help, because hardly anyone (if anyone at all) in the documentary was having a VBAC. And the risks of both types of birth weigh equally in my mind. But the one thing I keep reading everywhere is that if the reason for cesarean in your previous pregnancy is still a factor, your chances of a successful VBAC are much lower. Well, I think failure to progress and not being able to deliver a 7 lb. 5 oz. baby are still factors. So, here's the big verdict that husband and I have come to agree on:
If I go into spontaneous labor before my scheduled c-section date, I will try for a VBAC. If I do not go into labor before my scheduled date, we'll continue with our prior plan for a repeat c-section.

Don't forget! The Bitty Bug Designs Giveaway over at My Ramblings ends TOMORROW. Get your entries in!!!

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

VBAC vs. Repeat C-Section

Hey, friends. This post isn't going to be like any other I've written. I'm really struggling with a huge decision and would love to ask for input if you have any experience, friends or family with experience, or an opinion either way. Before I move forward, I would like to share with you that my toes look like sausages. I love foot swelling.
At my 30 week check-up, I asked the practice's midwife if I would be a good candidate for a VBAC (vaginal birth after cesarean). She wasn't a part of the practice when S was born, so she didn't feel like she knew enough to give me an honest opinion. She did, however, say that if I had to have a c-section with a 7lb. 5 oz. baby (ie: average) and didn't dilate with pitocin, my chances probably weren't that great. So, I kind of brushed it off and forgot about it, moving along with all plans for Bean to be born on June 29, as scheduled. Well, I went to my 32 week appointment yesterday, and this time it was with my OB. She said the midwife talked to her about my questions and thought I'd be a fine candidate for a VBAC. She discussed some of the same things with me about S being fairly average in size and not having been able to give birth vaginally before. But I was also induced early for high blood pressure, and I'm not sure Little S was ready to come as soon as the doctors were ready for her to be out for both of our safety. Because of the induction, I never got to spontaneously go into labor or try to labor by myself, when the baby was ready to make her grand exit. 
All of that said, there are risks and benefits to both a VBAC and a repeat c-section. But honestly, the repeat c-section sounds a heck of a lot scarier to me. I was so afraid that because I had an emergency c-section before, a staph infection in the wound, and a 14 week recovery period, that my scars were different and more high risk for a VBAC. But my OB assured me yesterday that my skin is what was infected, not my inside incisions, and although my scarring is different on the outside, it's not on the inside. So that fear is lifted. I also know many short women, like myself, who have had vaginal births. I was told last time that my pelvis must've been too small because S never made into the birth canal. Like I said, though, I just don't think she was ready. It was my first pregnancy and if it wasn't for medical reasons, I probably would have gone 40 or 41 weeks like several first time moms that have spontaneous labor. 
I'm not afraid of a c-section. I know how it works, so if I try the VBAC and end up with a c-section anyway, I'm okay with that. At least I tried, right? Or am I crazy? I'm small, couldn't birth an average sized baby the first time, and there are some inconveniences that come along with this option. Not only can you not be induced after you've had a c-section (well, you can, but my doctor does not do it because it greatly heightens the risk of uterine scarring), but my whole schedule that I've had in stone since we found out about our scheduled c-section in January would be totally scrapped. I'm a planner, family has taken time off work, rented cars, booked hotel rooms... My BIGGEST thought about it all is that this is my last chance. We're not having any more kids after Bean. If I want to try this, this is the only chance I'll get. And as much as it'll stink for people who have made plans (and trust me, some will be angry), this is my and my husband's decision. I can't be wrapped up in how it will effect other people. 
Here's where I stand right now -
I honestly still have no idea what to do. I've read and read and asked advice. I think at my next appointment, I will ask for an ultrasound because I've been told several times that the baby feels like she's breech. If she is, I think I'll probably just go with the c-section, because neither of us need to go through that to follow through on some great dream I have. My OB felt her yesterday and said she thinks that it's a bum where people have been telling me it's a head. So, she might be in the right direction, but we really don't know. If she's head down, I think I have a really big decision to make at the end of the month. I'm scared... of the unknown. And of the unscheduled. But I've wanted this experience ever since I started thinking about having children and for the opportunity to present itself after I didn't think it was possible seems like a huge blessing and message.
Not to mention, it's been researched and proven that VBAC delivered babies have a much higher success rate of nursing than repeat CS babies. And that is so important to me.

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Daddy Takes S to the River

Almost every weekend, my husband takes S on a bike/trailer ride to the river. There's all kinds of awesome wildlife there and two Saturdays ago, they ran into a family of turtles and S got to hold a butterfly! I'm so happy Husband got a bicycle and is able to not only spend some time exercising, which he loves, but with his daughter to boot. The best part is that the trail they take goes about 4.5 miles from point A to the river, then on their way back, they stop at the playground (where I usually meet them) for playtime so S can get her "energies" out. After spending all of the weekdays with Mommy, I know she really enjoys her special time with Daddy! Here are some of the photos that were captured on the ride 2 Saturdays ago.
 When a little girl chases butterflies quietly and gently enough...
 One just might land on her finger!
 So, S has a baby doll named Abby. And Abby pretty much goes EVERYWHERE with us. Car rides, stores, playground, trailer rides... S even told me that if Abby can't come with her, she's not coming to the hospital to meet her baby sister. Of course my reaction was, "Abby is welcome! She's part of the family, too!" When S draws our family on her chalkboard, she includes Abby and Poodle (that's her little lovie banket). It's sort of adorable. So, here's Abby!
 This is where S sits to watch the minnows in the river. She says the big fishies are mean fishies and they eat the poor little baby fishies. (I guess the minnows are the poor little food.)
This little girl has been the center of my whole world since I got pregnant with her in May 2008. I can't believe there are going to be two precious angels in my life so soon... God surely has blessed me.

Don't forget to enter the Bitty Bug Designs Giveaway at My Ramblings!

Monday, May 14, 2012

Mother's Day + Giveaway!

We started Mother's Day off with a clean house (thank you, Hubby!) and a morning at church. My in-laws drove down and met us at a restaurant for lunch (where they gave all the mommies a rose!), then we all came back to the house. Husband took S for a bike/trailer ride to the river, FIL took a nap, and MIL and I went to the fabric store. I think that place is my new Heaven and I might like it more than Target. GASP!

I kind of love this picture. I have no idea what face I'm making or why. It looks like I'm about to sneeze or my husband said something totally inappropriate. I'm guessing it's the second one. And no, it's not something S would understand. He's really good about that.
 shirt and pants: Motherhood, cardigan: Filene's Basement, shoes: Guess, bracelet: c/o Poshlocket
I had a very nice Mother's Day weekend and I hope you did, too! I only wish I could have been with my mom! She's my favorite. I'll get to see her in a few weeks for Memorial Day, though, and we'll be hard at work with a deep spring cleaning! 

My friend Crystal is thoughtfully hosting the very first Bitty Bug Designs giveaway, starting today and ending Monday, May 21! I'm giving away an $18 credit to the shop, which includes custom orders, so be sure to check out her post today and enter!!!
Here are some example items you can use a winning credit toward: