08 June 2011

Nerd in Utero Project: Weeks 18 & 19 from the American West

Week 18 from the South Rim of the Grand Canyon.  Baby Nerd, you were at one of the 7 Natural Wonders of the World while in utero!

Week 19 was photographed at the south end of Jenny Lake in Grand Tetons National Park.  It was already June when we visited this park, and the winter's record-breaking snow was still clinging to the mountains.

How Far Along: 19 weeks, 7 days
Size of Baby: The size of a mango.  She grew a lot in the last 2 weeks!
Total Weight Gain/Loss: Uhhhh, I'm up 15 pounds.  I ate a lot while on vacation…and my chest-ular region grew more…
Stretch Marks: With the expansion of my belly, I thought I would have a couple by now, but still not a one.
Maternity Clothes: Bought a few more tops before we left for vacation and my first pair of legging shorts for the first time since 4th grade.  I figured that denim wasn't going to be my best friend forever.
Right before the trip (just for fun), I tried on a C-cup bra…and it actually fit.  I purchased 2 of them and alternated between them and the few B-cups I had bought just a few weeks prior.  Just where will they go from here?
Baby-related Purchases: I thought I would buy Baby Nerd a onesie from Yellowstone or Jackson Hole, but every item of clothing was so expensive out west.  When browsing through the book section of a gift shop in the Grand Canyon, I came across the perfect book for our little girl for when she's a little older: Do Princesses Wear Hiking Boots?  Considering the fact I'm not a fan of the whole "all girls are princesses" idea, I thought this would be the perfect way to show our daughter the balance between being a girly girl and an outdoorsy, tomboy type.  Like her mom, she will wear skirts and be able to style her hair.  But also like her mom, she'll also know how to catch and gut a fish, how to cook a meal over a campfire, and how to deal with the cuts and scrapes that come with picking blackberries.
Gender: Every time a fellow traveler asked what we were having, we always smiled like goofballs when replying with, "Girl!"
Movement: Baby Nerd really moved while we were on our road trip!  Well, she didn't move while we were in the rental car.  Our theory is that the road noise lulled her.  But every time I sat or lay down, she was groovin' in the uterus.  I kept calling each movement a kick, but I'm sure there were punches, stretches, and involuntary twitches.
Sleep: For a vacation without my Snoogle, it wasn't half bad.  Every place we stayed had a lovely collection of pillows, so usually two ended up under my head and a third in between my knees.  There were at least 2 nights out of the 10 where we slept over 8 hours.  We're soaking it up while we can.
Belly Button In or Out: It's looking a little strange simply because the bottom half of my navel is sunken in, but the top half is really trying to poke out.  I don't get it.
What I Miss: Moisturized skin.  10 days out west zapped every bit of moisture out of my skin, despite my efforts of lathering up from multiple bottles of lotion I packed and stole from the hotel/B&Bs where we stayed.  Never have I seen so much of my own shed skin on the inside of my shirts.
I also miss not having to stop and catch my breath every few seconds when I climb hills.  We did quite a bit of hiking while visiting the national parks of the west.  So while Michael stayed several yards ahead on a trail, ready to explore the world and trek on for miles, I was slugging behind, huffing and puffing and looking for something to sit on.  Downhill hiking was much more my cup of tea.
Cravings: Aside from the variety we received through B&B breakfasts, I stuck to 3 types of food throughout the vacation: anything Mexican (tacos, enchiladas, pork carnitas, or anything that came with cheese), pizza (also for the cheese), and Caesar salads.  Michael probably thought I wasn't branching out enough since we usually opt for local fare, but these were the things I truly craved.  I even put Caesar dressing on the grocery list for today…I still want Caesar salads!
Symptoms: 
  • Oh the sweating…it continues…and I don't like it...
  • My belly itches, but a lot of that probably has to do with my skin drying up in the desert.  I'll be treating my torso with a salt and olive oil scrub in the shower!
  • The need to be hydrated.  I drink water like a fish, and I'm still not satisfied.  Time for a water IV?
Managing the Stress: V-A-C-A-T-I-O-N.  It may have been hard work driving all over 8 different states, but it was nice to be doing something outside the responsibilities at home for a little while.  I also kept a journal of our travels.  There are only a few events from the end I still need to put to paper.
Worries: That I'll gain more weight than I set as my goal.
Celebrations:
  • Michael got to feel Baby Nerd kick for the first time when we were staying in Rigby, Idaho!  It seemed every time he put his hand on my belly, our daughter would suddenly get shy and stop her moving.  But finally after enjoying a calm evening stroll along the banks of the Snake River and soaking in a warm bath, I lay back in our bed with the hopes that Baby Nerd would start her usual show.  Michael kept his hand on my belly, waiting for some sort of movement other than a gas bubble from digesting my steak dinner.  Sure enough, we felt her give a little kick at exactly the same moment.  His face lit up like a Christmas tree.
  • This one is also about the dad-to-be, and it makes me smile!  When we would be in the car for a long stint, Michael would reach over, rub my belly, and say something about being with both his girls.  I own a happy heart.
  • Seeing so much of America's majesty and history: Las Vegas, the Grand Canyon, Lake Mead and the Hoover Dam, Navajo National Monument, Canyonlands NP, Arches NP, Four Corners National Monument, Mesa Verde NP, Salt Lake City and its Temple Square, the Golden Spike National Monument, Yellowstone NP, and Grand Tetons NP.
  • Our next-door neighbors, the Longs, are truly the best.  They took care of our garden and getting our mail while we were gone.  It's a blessing to have neighbors you can trust and share a friendship with.  They even left us a vase of fresh-cut hydrangeas from their yard on our kitchen table.  And just to give them a break for a day or two, my mom came to the rescue to house-sit for us.  She took over watering duties, put some food in our freezer, and even emptied our dishwasher.  I only hope I'll be as thoughtful when Baby Nerd wants us to house-sit one day when she's trotting the globe!  Thanks, Mom.  :)
  • OUR ANNIVERSARY!  On 31 May 2011 while we were driving through Utah, Michael and I celebrated 3 years of marriage.  I love you, Michael.  Thanks for your support, your devotion, and your sense of humor that could never be matched by anyone.  We will be a family of 3 on our next anniversary!

1 comment:

A. Hab. said...

Oh, Vik! This post just made me smile and smile. :) I love the stories of Michael. He seems to really be embracing the idea of having his girls now, hehe. I also read somewhere the other day that some people are just genetically predisposed not to get stretch marks. The article I read said that if you are prone to stretch marks pre-pregnancy (just normal weight gain and loss), then you're probably going to get unavoidable stretch marks. If not, then you might not actually have any.

Of course, that was only one website, so I don't know what research they were referring to. And it was a sort of cursory glance. But I tell you because you might be just one of those fortunate, genetically-blessed women! :)

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