Baby #2

I’m just going to ramble some updates at you…

As you can see by the vast length of time between posts, I’ve been a little busy. My little guy is now 20 months old and he has a little brother on the way! Baby Jones number 2 is going to be a boy! I’m getting settled into my new identity as a boy mom. We plan to only have two children so boys it is! So far the biggest struggle is coming up with another boy name. Girl names were so easy. I’m glad that there will be no shortage of clothing for the little brother and the toy situation should work out nicely as well.

I continue to reflect on how great it has worked out being a part time substitute teacher and stay at home mom. Although I longed for a full time teaching job of my own, I continue to realize what a blessing it has been to have this time with my son. I now know that I want the same for my next boy and will not look for full time work until baby # 2 is at least a year old. Having my in-laws nearby, retired, and eager to hang with their grand kid has been a major help and allowed me to keep one foot in the teaching world.

Pregnancy number 2 has so far, and thankfully been exactly like pregnancy number 1. I was lucky to have no sickness or issues the first time and people continually reminded me that each pregnancy is different, to which I had hoped they would be wrong. So far they have been. Although perhaps one difference is that I am truly struggling with my cravings, which have mostly been for sugar and junk food. I just can’t seem to say no. I’ll blame it on the pregnancy for now and hope I can curb it soon!

My little man is pretty awesome. He talks a lot. Can’t believe I was worried when he didn’t say much at a year! He knows his colors and can point out a few letters and numbers. He’s addicted to Thomas the tank engine and knows the names of the trains better than his family members! He loves animals, especially our two cats (to their dismay). He’s starting to become a wildly picky eater. It’s hard at times and makes me feel like not getting those veggies in will cost him dearly. Trying to be like Frozen and let it go. He does have some good times with meals so I’ll focus on the small successes (continued love of peas, yay!).

I just got back from a dirty thirty cruise with my other lady friends who are also turning the big 3-0 this year. It was fun but a bit challenging being all pregnant and unable to truly party it up or do daring things like the flow-rider on the ship. Snorkeling in Belize was a blast, the food was great, and the company wasn’t too bad either! The hubs is currently on his man trip to compliment my lady trip, out in Colorado. He’s spending the week with his cousin skiing to his hearts content.

So June 19th is the proposed arrival of baby boy #2! Lots to do before then. We are working on (by we I mean my husband) remodeling two rooms of our house which will be our new room so the children can have what’s left over. I keep thinking that I can’t believe I’m going to give birth again. All of it seems just as scary as the first time. Maybe even more so, because I know what I’m in for! Wish me luck and hopefully I’ll update again soon!

Pregnant Belly Touching: DO IT!

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Now that I can say, ‘been there, done that’ to being pregnant, I have a revamped opinion of belly touching. DO IT! LET OTHERS DO IT! and GET OVER YOURSELF!

Life is too short to be afraid of what people are going to think or to be afraid of strangers. When I was pregnant, I didn’t mind at all if people wanted to touch my belly. That was me and I totally understood those that wouldn’t want strangers or even friends and family groping their tummies. But now that my belly is empty and I am on the other side of being pregnant, I completely understand the desire to touch someone’s belly. I am not brave enough to ask a stranger at the store yet but I certainly ask my friends and family, in hopes to feel the little munchkin kick. In that instance, it brings back the most amazing thing about being pregnant, feeling this little life form’s first interactions with the outside world. So what if that old lady at the mall wants to touch your baby bump? She probably hasn’t been pregnant for decades and maybe doesn’t know anyone who is and just wants to be a part of the miracle, if only for a second. Or perhaps she was never able to have a child, even more reason to let her in on your wonderful new beginning. But, what if it’s an old, ugly man reaching out for your precious one with crooked, scaly hands? You get to choose the perspective, so make it positive. Perhaps he loves children and enjoyed raising his own years ago and now as he is closing out his time on earth, his own children haven’t, won’t or can’t conceive. The wonderment of being a grandparent, he will never know. Can’t you be a dear and let him be near someone else’s grand baby for just a moment? 

What if you’re the person who just loves the miracle of being pregnant and you want to do the belly rubbing? Well be brave, ask first (I mean, you don’t want to get sued) and hope they’ve read this blog! 

I never felt more interaction with the world at large than when I was pregnant. I had a very obvious pregnant belly that invited people in to ask how I was feeling, offer me a chair, inquire about the gender or whether this was my first baby. I loved that complete strangers felt comfortable enough to interact with me. Most days it seems, we go through the humdrum of life avoiding eye contact, small talk and long lines and we forget that we’re all on this planet together doing basically the same thing: trying to be happy. It seems being pregnant or seeing others who are reminds us of where we all come from. We come together stranger or not, to help out in any way we can. This speaks volumes about us as a species. As a society we have our faults, but I think moments like these show that when it comes down to it, we truly care about life. 

Waiting Game

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I’m due on June 2nd, which my phone app reminds me is 3 days away (if you don’t count today and go to midnight on June 2nd). I can’t believe it’s so close. I also can’t believe I made it this far. A mere month ago I was told to take it very easy, stop working and lay down a lot for fear the baby would come early. And yet, here I am. So I’ve been playing the waiting game, which I’ve learned many mom’s to be have done since the dawn of time. And it turns out, like me, these moms are impatient too and have come up with numerous tricks, tips and strategies to end the waiting game. I’ve heard it all at this point, from the internet to friends and family sharing their ideas. It seems each trick comes with the caveat that in the end your baby will come when he/she is ready and there is no guarantee that you can actually speed things along. 

Here is a list of some of the wierdest things I’ve heard:

Rubbing the soft part of your ankle

Burning sage and walking over it so the smoke enters your uterus

Galloping like a horse (no joke!)

Jumping Jacks

Eat blackberry waffles while doing the chicken dance naked in a pool (hmmm…maybe they were being sarcastic!)

Well, when things finally do start happening I will be so excited. Not long ago I was nervous about giving birth. Well now I have wholeheartedly embraced the concept. I am eager to feel real pain because I know it’ll mean I’m that much closer to meeting my little Jonesy. Also I am definitely looking forward to ditching this giant stomach and heading down the road to recovery and my original shape or something that closely resembles it. 

I SOLEMNLY SWEAR TO BE JUST AS ACTIVE POST BABY

 

In 10 days, I will hit my due date head on. I’m hoping that maybe baby Jones will come even sooner. I am so excited and ready to have my body back! This weekend would be ideal since my husband has Friday and Monday off for the holiday, so we’ll see.

Either way though, this should be a great weekend, Either we’ll have a newborn OR we’ll be up at the lake using our new room in the cottage. My husbands family owns a cottage with 2 bedrooms, which wasn’t so bad when we didn’t have kids on the way. His parents had a room and his sister and her husband had the other. We used the fold out couch when we were all there. Ever since we announced we were adding to our family, construction began on a new room for his parents and we’re getting the one they had. It’ll be nice to have our place for stuff. We spend a lot of our summer up there every year and a room of our own will make it much better! I can’t wait to introduce little Jonesy to the lake, sunshine, boating, etc. He/ she doesn’t know it yet but they’ll be water skiing, kayaking, volleyballing, hiking, swimming, and biking before long. I can’t wait to make good on our promise to stay active even with a new baby. 

We are crazy but in a good way. We plan to take our newborn (most likely just shy of a month old) on a road trip to Florida. My friend is getting married there. We have well spaced friends to stay with along the way and we plan to take our time and not be too concerned about timing. I think if we have that mindset we’ll be all right. If that’s not enough we also plan to take the little tyke TENT camping in the Adirondacks a month later for a whole week. Are we insane? Probably. We’ve done this before and my husband’s family are pro-campers with all the necessary equipment. My biggest concern is distrubing others at night. I figure if the baby gets too loud at night I’ll just hop in the van with him/her and hopefully that won’t bother other campers. 

Maybe this is a bit much. Maybe it’ll be hard. Maybe there will be unforeseen hurdles. But I’d rather do it than regret that we didn’t. I don’t doubt there will be challenges and unforeseen hurdles right in our backyard anyways. 

Here’s a look at some pre-baby fun:

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A tandem bicycle tour from our house in New York to Kentucky via Canada! Tented it and everything!

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We do everything together, even cliff jumping off the ‘end of the world’ on the Big Island in Hawai’i!

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Jones Family Ski

ImageGlad I got this out of my system before becomming a mama #skydiving

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Water skiing in our wedding gear!

 

 

Food: How To Share It with My Family and Prevent Picky Eaters!

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Being large and in charge, my main goal lately has been food. At 9 months pregnant, I have a voracious appetite, needless to say. I’ve been trying to stay away from simple carbs and sugar so that this wee one fits through the exit okay. It’s been a struggle. Turns out, sugar is in practically everything. In a previous post, I jotted down some great meal options that have gotten me through.

Well today I made an AMAZING smoothie. Simple ingredients but oh so delicious. I blended a banana, cinnamon almonds, all natural peanut butter, milk and a couple of butterscotch chips (I know, I know) and it was phenomenal. I often make similar smoothies with yogurt as well. I think this one tasted so great because I put in more peanut butter and less milk. It was such a tasty treat that I felt compelled to blog about it! 

On a similar note, I’ve been thinking ahead to the future when our little one is joining us a the dinner table. I’m expecting some challenges beyond the typical picky eater. You see, my husband is also a picky eater. Me? I’ll eat anything and I’ll try anything and I love practically everything. Of course, it wasn’t always this way. I had my moments as a kid, too. It was when I was in college and got a job at a fancy seafood place that I first really tried and liked seafood. Oh and my school was in NYC which really opened up my world to tasty and exotic foods. My husband has always been picky and college expanded his food horizon as well. But he was so particular before that the new things he learned to like (ex: strawberries) seem hardly worth mentioning.

Fortunately my husband agrees that our child should try stuff and doesn’t wish his pickiness on him/her. So he’s said that he’ll at least try anything I make for dinner. Can’t wait to see this in practice. I’ve of course, googled this topic and came across some great things to keep in mind and ways to introduce new foods. 

Picky eater prevention:

– Introduce one new food at a time and serve it with other familiar, enjoyable foods

– Insist on a taste of the new item but nothing more

– Limit sweets. The more they get a craving the harder it is to keep them on the healthy track. (I feel like this applies to Mom and Dad as well)

– When appropriate allow children to help cook the meal or choose ingredients

– Re-try foods. Explain to children that taste buds change and different ingredients can alter flavors. It’s important to keep trying a food several times before writing it off forever

– Set a good example: children watch and mimic what you do. Finish your plate, make meal time enjoyable and relaxing

 

 

Peanut Butter and Other Cravings

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Throughout most of my pregnancy I haven’t really been craving anything in particular. I was always confused by this craving idea, because all my life I’ve ‘craved’ foods. I love food and often crave different things. Pregnancy has been no different. As I start my 34th week of human cultivating, I’ve been noticing my cravings are getting a little out of control. I think this is due in part to my new diet of almost no sugar. The doc says I’m growing a big one and if I don’t want a ten pounder I need to lay of the sweet stuff. So what do I crave? EVERYTHING sweet and especially peanut butter. I’ve always had a fondness for it but now it’s all I can think about! My husband isn’t on this lovely diet with me which me makes it that much harder, watching him sip milkshakes and grape soda. He keeps reminding me that I won’t be pregnant forever. Easy for him to say!

So with my internet research, I’ve come up with some quite tasty alternatives to my typical sugary breakfasts and carb filled lunches and dinners. I thought I’d share how I get by for those that might be in a similar situation.

Breakfasts:

PB OATMEAL & YOGURT – 1 serving of plain Greek Yogurt mixed with 1 serving of plain Quaker oatmeal and 2 tbsp of Smucker’s all natural peanut peanut butter. It is soooo good and only 9 g of sugar for the whole thing! They key here is that there is no sugar listed in the ingredients for any of these things!

SIMPLE FRUIT & EGGS – 1 whole grape fruit and 2 eggs scrambled with a dollop of goat cheese on the eggs. No butter, no salt. No sugar on the grapefruit (something I used to do but not anymore!) Pretty filling and the grapefruit adds the sweet kick with out refined white sugar.

BANANA PANCAKES – No really, pancakes made with just smashed bananas and eggs. No flour or sugar here! They’re tough to flip but not impossible. Add blueberries and/or cinnamon for fun. They don’t need syrup, I promise. But if you must indulge try honey or real maple syrup instead of the high fructose alternatives.

Lunch:

Tropical Chicken Salad – White chunk chicken breast from a can, mixed with a couple of tbsp of Hellman’s light mayo, slivered nuts (almonds typically or whatever’s on hand), sliced grapes and a hint of coconut extract. This is great on a whole wheat pita (Wegman’s makes some delicious ones that always stay moist somehow).

SPICY EGG SALAD – Hard boiled eggs mashed with a couple of tbsp of Hellman’s light mayo and chipotle mustard. Simple and tasty. Again, this goes great on the pitas.

ROMAINE SALAD – Romaine is tasty and much better for you than see through ice burg. Add some fresh broccoli, bell pepper and avocado and now we’re talking. Sometimes I’ll throw in a hard boiled egg. I’ve been using a marinade as a dressing (shh! don’t tell). It’s from Wegman’s again, called Organic Lemon and Garlic Marinade. It’s one of the few out there with very little sugar, it is kinda high in fat though so still stick to the 2 tbsp serving size.

Dinner: 

QUINOA STIR FRY – Cook up some quinoa and then toss into the wok with bell pepper, spinach, garlic, broccoli, onion (whatever veggies you have on hand), add some soy sauce and a generous amount of chipotle powder. This is a satisfying dinner and Quinoa is so good for you. Go google it if you’ve been under a rock and haven’t heard of it.

Snacks:

mixed nuts, clementines or mandarin oranges, kiwi, grapes, hummus and breton 8 grains and seeds crackers

*Got a lot of these ideas on pinterest…check it out!*