Friday, January 27, 2012

35 Weeks

How Far Along: 35 Weeks! Yesterday marked the 35 weeks with 35 days to go milestone...we'll see if that's true soon enough.

What We've Been Up To: The Spring Semester started this week. I'm taking two courses, Toxicology and my Practicum. I'm hoping that it all goes as smoothly as possible given all that we've got going on in the coming months. The Toxicology class seems really interesting and very different than any class I've taken to date. For my practicum I will be working with an awesome organization, Sprout City Farms. After this semester I will only have 6 credits left, but will end up being two classes and my Capstone project. So, if all goes well, I should be done by this December!

We had our 35 week check-up at the OB this week. From here on out we will be going weekly. Most everything looked great, I'm measuring 3 weeks ahead so we'll be getting an ultrasound next week to make sure the baby isn't 20 lbs or something. Got a Strep B test; if that comes back positive I'll have to be on antibiotics during labor in order to not pass it along to the baby.

Finn went to the Brother Ali show on Thursday night with our good friend Chris and some other friends. It sounds like it was a great show, even though they missed Slug (another one of our favorites) do a surprise opening act - luckily for Finn we are going to see Slug tonight at the first ever winter concert at Red Rocks. I can't lie, I was extremely bummed that I couldn't go to Brother Ali show as he is one of my all-time favorites and we've been wanting to see him for years, but it was just not the right timing (8 months pregnant in a pot-smoke filled room with loud music). Hopefully we'll get another chance to see him sometime soon.

Finn's grandma flew in from Illinois on Wednesday; she's in town for my baby shower this weekend! Finn picked her up at the airport (tear free I'm told) which I know he loves getting to do. We went to Brother's Bar that night which is a family tradition, really. It was really nice to see her and I'm glad she got to come in to spend some time with the family before her next great grandchild is born, it really means a lot!!

Finn and I are heading to Red Rocks tonight to see Common and Atmosphere. It should be a great time. The last time we went to Red Rocks was in August to see Atmosphere and it rained the entire concert, but it was an amazing concert and we had a great time. This time around it may be snowing, but will no matter what be cold - luckily I've got a little space heater built in!

Atmosphere @ Red Rocks - August

Cravings:  Had a random hankering for lemonade yesterday, but we were at Whole Foods and regardless of how good it sounded I couldn't bring myself to spend $5 on a quart or two of organic lemonade; seriously, that's ridiculous.

Sleep: I seriously don't even want to talk about it.

Gender: Currently on the baby pool we have 11 people thinking it is a boy and 8 people who think it is going to be a girl! The boys are getting one vote at a time and continue to take the lead in this pool. Here's the link for anyone who is interested in playing:

Names: We haven't done anything with names this past week, but we've still got a decent list of "top names" that is short so that is helpful.

Symptoms: Well, I still have all of the same symptoms as I've had the past few weeks (check it). HOWEVER, literally all of these things pale in comparison to the newest symptom.....Pruritic Urticarial Papules and Plaques of Pregnancy (PUPPS). Yep, that's right, I've now joined the approximately 1% of all pregnant women who are stricken with the most annoying, hideous, itchy rash that there is little treatment for and no cure - except to give birth! The heartburn, agaonizing pelvic pain and pressure whenever I move my legs, etc. are all still there I just can't concentrate on them because my skin itches so incredibly bad. The rash has continued to spread since it reared it's ugly self in the middle of the night this past Sunday, it's now on my stomach, hips, legs and arms. It looks a little something like this on my legs (lovely, right!?):

Favorite moments since last post: Starting school - while I am also dreading it, it is nice to know that I'm getting closer and closer to the finish line. Making baby shower favors with Finn. Grandma making it in from Illinois safely and seeing her.

What I'm looking forward to this week: The baby shower that my family is throwing for me this Saturday! I'm so excited to see everyone and to spend time with good friends and family! The ultrasound next Thursday - another chance to see Gertie before the big day!

Sunday, January 22, 2012

34th Week

How Far Along: 34 weeks

What We've Been Up To: Finn traveled to Vegas for work this week and was gone for three days. It was kind of weird - probably didn't help that I hurt my head the first morning without him - oy vey! He loved Vegas so much we are considering moving there sometime in the near future  (I kid, I kid! He didn't enjoy it much at all).

Went to a pedicure with Hanni and had a delightful time. Got the Muppets glitter removed and my old standby, Lincoln Park After Dark put back on, hooray!

We celebrated my brother's 32nd birthday this week as well as our good friend Justin's 28th. We stayed out way too late that night - pregnant ladies are way too sober for Larimer Square outings at two in the morning!

My mom and I spent all day today (Sunday) fabric shopping and making curtains for the nursery and for Finn and I's bedroom and bathroom. The most time consuming part was finding fabric! Between all the choices, the prices, the "look" you may or may not be going for, wow! what an experience!! We ended up with some awesome stuff and with my mom's fabulous sewing skills we now have beautiful curtains in the baby's room as well as ours - exciting stuff people!

Baby's Curtains!

Cravings:  Finn has told me that my love for dark chocolate bites doesn't really count as a craving, so I guess I'm not craving anything! Carbs are always good though :)

Sleep: What on earth is this?!

Gender: Currently on the baby pool we have 10 people thinking it is a boy and 8 people who think it is going to be a girl! The boys are slowly taking the lead in this pool. Here's the link for anyone who is interested:

Names: Well we independently went through our excel sheet of potential names and narrowed it down to our top 4 boys and girl names and surprisingly enough, we shared a lot of our top choices!! Super exciting, now it's on to middle names...oh boy (or girl)!! :)

Symptoms: Holy HEARTBURN! Chewing gum and tums are new pals of mine thanks to this wonderment of nature! Ever increasing pelvic pain and pressure - seriously, it's as if I have a kettle bell between my legs which makes walking, rolling over, lifting my legs, and most other things a bit difficult these days. I'm still only waddling for safety's sake, feet and ankle swelling - Hanni asked where my ankle bones went at a pedicure this week, back pain, abdominal pains - especially at night when trying to change positions, and a few, occasional Braxton Hicks contractions.

Favorite moments since last post: Finn coming home from Vegas! Spending time getting pampered with Hanni. Celebrating birthdays with family and friends. And spending time with my mom.

Friday, January 20, 2012

Crafty Nesting!

DIY Closet Dividers

In an effort to help Finn and I keep our baby's closet organized and to save us some middle of the night where is the right sized onesie!?!! agony I found this fun idea to create closet dividers to separate different sized clothes. If nothing else, it is cute and a pretty fun craft to do!

Supplies: Wooden O's, Fun Printed Paper, Paint, Paintbrush, Modge Podge, Number and Letter Stickers, Scissors and/or Exacto Knife

Step 1: Purchase supplies; I found all the supplies I needed at Hobby Lobby and I spent less than $10 on everything for this project!

These are the O's I bought and I went with a variety of different polka dots for the paper! Polka dots were visually appealing and are about as gender neutral in color and style as you can find in a scrapbook section!

Step 2: Paint Wooden O's; I chose to use a teal color that accented the paper choices I purchased. This step isn't totally necessary, but helps give the dividers a "clean" look rather than having any unfinished wood showing at the end.

Step 3: Glue the scrapbook paper to the Wooden O's and cut around the outside. I chose to glue the Wooden O's to the paper and then cut around the O's as opposed to tracing and cutting the out the paper separately (it seemed to give me a cleaner look to the cuts). 

Step 4: Cut out the center of the O's. This step was challenging, in that the paper sometimes ripped while attempting to cut it. A trick that worked for me was to use the scissors to cut a number of small slits and then go around the inside of the O with an exacto knife (see image to the right.)

Step 5: Add stickers to the O's to indicate which size garments should go where. This step, while it makes the final product look cute, is potentially unnecessary, especially if you choose different papers/designs for each of the O's. This may be all the reminder you and/or your spouse need to know where the clothes go!


Step 6: Hang onto closet rod and add clothes!

Monday, January 16, 2012

33rd Week and Nursery Sneak Peek!

How Far Along: 33 weeks, just 8 more weeks to go!

What We've Been Up To: I've been enjoying time in the yoga studio as well as the pool. Both hot yoga and prenatal yoga have been treating me fairly well. The pool really helps to take the ever increasing pressure off of my hips and pelvic area - a real treat these days!

Nesting!  It's not just a myth! We've (in all honesty it is Finn who has spearheaded and done most of the work) done so much cleaning, organization, decorating, etc. It's exhausting - as can be evidenced by me sneaking away during most of these activities to take a nap! :) 

Everything is coming together quite nicely in the nursery. We bought a changing table last week and my dad graciously agreed to paint it, as well as some shelves, to match the crib we had already purchased. It looks amazing!! My parents also got us the changing pad set-up we registered for so the nursery is nearly complete! You can check it out at the bottom of this post in the nursery sneak peek photos. A more thorough nursery post with too many pictures will be coming soon! :) 

Cravings:  Remember those Hershey's dark chocolate bites I talked about in my last post? Well I went and got gas and begged Finn to run in and grab me a bag (or two!). They are still my favorite! 

Sleep: Still total crap these days; it's fairly hit or miss. Pregnancy-related insomnia is a bit ridiculous. I have been staying up later than I used to before I was pregnant and typically make it 3ish hours before I feel wide awake and have trouble falling back asleep. Thank goodness for the other amazing Christmas gift Finn got me, my Kindle Fire! That thing has been a life saver - movies, books, etc. all at my finger tips in bed and I don't have to wake Finn up!

Gender: Currently on the baby pool we have 9 people thinking it is a boy and 8 people who think it is going to be a girl! 

Names: Moon-unit and Blanket are seeming more and more likely if a little boy decides to show his face soon! :)

Symptoms: Pelvic pain, not-quite-waddling (ok, that's a lie, sometimes I waddle - BUT only for safety reasons), feet and ankle swelling, back pain, abdominal pains - especially at night when trying to change positions, a few Braxton Hicks contractions (even one during yoga this morning!)

Favorite moment9s) since last post: Doctor's appointment went well - baby is still head down (verified by our OB who checked for any potential dilation, etc. given the amount of pelvic pain/pressure I feel)! Getting the nursery furniture set up and the room generally organized - we feel a bit more prepared now. I think just in general, getting to spend a lot of time with Finn. He's really my best friend and I am more excited every day to think about him being a dad. He's going to be the most amazing dad, I just know it! He's the greatest, really! I love him more than words can express!!

And Finally, Drum-roll Please....
Presenting the Nursery Sneak Peek!!

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

A Very Special Christmas Gift!

I mentioned in a recent post that Finn got me the most incredible Christmas gift...a customized baby quilt!! I just picked it up yesterday and couldn't be more pleased! Amy from Stitchery Dickory Dock made this amazing quilt and matching throw pillow! It matches our nursery perfectly and is absolutely adorable and perfect!!

Friday, January 6, 2012

32 Weeks

How Far Along:
 32 weeks, just 8 more weeks to go!

What We've Been Up To: We've been getting more and more ready for the little one's arrival. We registered at Babies R Us and Target last weekend. It was fun to see all the millions of baby items at Babies R Us. It was crazy just how many things there are out there for babies! I think we registered for some great things, but we'll see what we end up getting and what we actually end up needing!

We are still working on the nursery. We just bought a storage unit for books/toys/random crap that we need to set up (and decide if we want to paint it black). We also need to get a changing table/dresser. Besides those items the other things I would "like" to have include some new curtains and to decorate the space a little bit.

Finn got me a pretty incredible Christmas gift which I've been working on and will be doing a post about that soon!

Cravings: Finn found me Hershey's dark chocolate bites! He put them in my Christmas stocking and they are to die for! I have been thinking about them nearly every day since I finished them...been trying to think of an excuse to go to the store to get some...gas? do we need limes? :) 

Sleep: Still total crap these days; it's fairly hit or miss. It is hard to get/stay comfortable and just hard to stay asleep in general

Gender: Currently on the baby pool we have 8 people thinking it is a boy and 7 people who think it is going to be a girl! That's pretty funny!

Names: We've put quite a bit more thought into names in the past couple of weeks. We've even come up with a couple of first and middle name combinations - that's huge people! We are still working on some more boy names. I think we are pretty settled on several girl name options, but the boy names are still proving to be more challenging for us. But we are making progress!

Symptoms: Pelvic pain, not-quite-waddling, feet and ankle swelling, back pain, abdominal pains - especially at night when trying to change positions, a few Braxton Hicks contractions

Favorite moment since last post: I would say it was the ultrasound we had on December 27th, even though I have technically done a blog post since then. We hadn't seen the little one since the last week of September so it was quite a treat!! I was curious to see if the baby moved around as much for the ultrasound as I think/feel it does everyday. I wasn't disappointed, the baby kicked the ultrasound technician a few times and wiggled pretty much the entire time. She said we were really going to have our hands full if its activity in the womb was anything like it might be once its born - I don't doubt that for a minute. I posted a pic from this ultrasound on the year in review post.  

Monday, January 2, 2012

2011: A Year In Review


In January I had some serious allergic reactions, to heaven knows what (although we are now fairly confident it was a reaction to a brand of pre-natal vitamin I was taking at the time). I had been dealing with this for some time, but in January a severe reaction sent me to the emergency room after class one night and we ended up seeing a specialist later in the month. The results of that showed that I am allergic to all types of grasses, but didn't tell us why my face was randomly swelling or why I broke out in hives after working out.


February was a pretty calm month for us. 

Cardamom and I
Jeff and Cinnamon
 We took a chicken keeping class with my parents and Jeff at the Denver Botanic Gardens. It seemed like a fun and interesting thing to learn about, who knew how much it would change our lives!! 

Finn and Rosemary

My cousin Justin got married to Nichole. We all had a great time at their wedding!
Me, Britt and Charlotte tearing up the dance floor!

Was a big month for Finn, as he landed a new job with American College of Veterinary Internal Medicine (ACVIM) as a Certification Coordinator! This was a huge relief for him as he had been referring soccer games as a part time job since November of 2010. Woo Hoo! Go Finn!

With the help of Finn's dad, we began building our greenhouse. While my dad began constructing  a chicken coop (in his garage)!

The month of the chickens! 

Finn turned 27 this month, and after not wanting a party, I was sure to throw him one! I'm a birthday person, so there was no way we weren't going to celebrate.

This is also the month that we completed construction on our greenhouse with Jeff; my dad finished constructing the chicken coop; my Dad, Mom, Finn and I re-built the chicken coop at our house and we purchased our first chickens!! 


Finn and I celebrated our 3rd wedding anniversary! I had a final presentation for my Urban Planning class that night, but Finn met me afterwards and we had dinner at Euclid Hall. I wasn't in the world's greatest mood that night, and although Finn absolutely loved his Brat Burger, I was not overwhelmed with my chicken and waffles. I'll take the chicken and waffles at Gladys Knight and Ron Winans in Atlanta any day! Regardless, we still reflected on our 3 years together and realized we were still meant for each other today (even if I was cranky) and always! ;)

Otherwise, the month was pretty laid back. Ashleigh's work was a bit tumultuous, and in fact her boss and many others were let go (this all started some time ago, but May was when her team was hit hardest). 

 The chickens continued to grow and the dogs enjoyed the beautiful Colorado weather.

Not a whole lot happened this month... ;)

Finn had to work downtown for the annual forum his work holds. He stayed downtown that week as well. It was a bit strange having him be so close (literally less than a 10 minute drive) but yet not be at home. I went and visited him occasionally for lunch or dinner throughout the week, and always met up with him to watch the USMNT play in the Gold Cup! 

We had the family over for a Father's Day bbq on the 19th. It was a ton of fun, lots of cornhole, chicken talk and laughter! We always enjoy the time spent with the whole gang! I was supposed to take a pregnancy test that day, but was beyond nervous and did not want to have to share the potentially bad news with Finn that although it was Father's Day that he wasn't going to be a dad (yet). 

The next morning I woke up way too early...I had to pee so badly but didn't want to take the pregnancy test. At about 5am I couldn't hold it ANY longer so rushed to the bathroom and peed on the stick...about 10 seconds later I yelled to Finn that we WERE PREGNANT!! He came rushing in there, and grabbed the test out of my hand...he asked how could I be just looked like two blurry lines, little did he know in his groggy state that the test was a digital one and it actually looked like this...

We had a good laugh about that and then were way too jacked up to fall back asleep! Quite the beginning to our week...and the next phase of our lives :) 

The next week Ashleigh traveled to Knoxville and Nashville for work, the babies first trip out of Colorado was complete!

This was a busy month for us (so pardon all the text)

The first weekend of July we told our families we were pregnant. We headed into Broomfield and our nerves were getting to us. I thought that, for some crazy reason, they were going to be disappointed in us - I was still in grad school, Finn had just got a new job, yada yada yada - I felt oddly like we were still in high school, like we were breaking the news to them 10 years ago or something. Finn also felt like a kid that might be getting in trouble, but knew that they would all be excited as well. Such an odd array of emotions to be having.

We went to Jeff and Jill's first. Jill was downstairs working on the computer and we all went down there to say hello. I wasn't sure exactly how this was all going to happen, we hadn't rehearsed it or made a plan or anything. They asked about the party we were supposed to be going to at Denise's and then Finn came out with it...he said "We wanted to ask if you'd like to be grandparents!" I was looking straight at his dad who looked a bit stunned and his mom said "REALLY!?!" then began shouting and shrieking and jumping up and down. His dad was a little teary eyed, as was his mom. Hugs and congratulations ensued.

We then headed to my parents' house. To protect the identities of those involved, the details of how this telling of the news came to be will not be shared in its entirety. Let's just say my mom instinctively knew. She took one look at me and said "ARE YOU!?" then came over and gave me a big hug. My dad was in utter shock and even told my mom that they were being Punk'd. They were both stunned, to say the least. We then convinced Charlotte to come over to the house and when she got there we talked about her upcoming trip to Ohio and then asked if she had any plans to go back there around March of next year. She said she didn't know, but why...we then said we may need her to babysit! She got so excited, started crying and gave me a huge hug; that's when I noticed that my parents had (finally) both started crying as well! Perhaps they were more excited that Charlotte was going to be an aunt then they were for Finn and I to be parents! ;)

Needless to say, everyone was delighted for us. We really wanted to share the news with our immediate family before we traveled to Chicago the second week of July for Megan's high school graduation where we would see Finn's extended family and could share the news with all of them in person.

Chicago was a wonderful trip, minuses the 80+ trips to the bathroom to throw up and other not-so-fun pregnancy related issues!! Everyone was very excited for us! We had so much fun hanging with the Illinois crew and Finn and I even took some time to dominate the Illinoisan corn hole champions!


August was a hot month, luckily we were able to act like pigs and cool off one day during Mudd Volleyball! We didn't win the tournament or anything but team Dirty Girls Like Muddy Balls had a heck of a lot of fun and only a few injuries to speak of. I got clearance from our OB specialist to play - they assured me that the baby was well insulated and protected so I could play to my heart's desire, which I did.

August was also my birthday, which I always love! It was a very sober birthday, wink wink. We had friends and family over and grilled, chilled, cornholed and drank (well most people drank). 


 In September our good friend Justin and his girlfriend, Britany, came to Denver to visit. We were lucky enough to be able to go see the Rapid's play in the CONCACAF Champion's League vs. Santos Laguna. It was some of the worst linesman work we'd ever seen, but the atmosphere and our seats were great, and of course we were in good company.

In October we had lots of fun! Tons of parties and celebrations to be had, including: Charlotte's quarter of a century birthday complete with a Kathy Griffin show, Hanni's 30th birthday complete with a live show, Amy and Jacob's wedding in the Outer Banks, and even some Halloween festivities!


I went to Washington, D.C. to present at the American Public Health Association (APHA) annual meeting for work. I presented on findings from our comprehensive literature review on the potential effects of animal-assisted therapy on kids with cancer. My friend Molly and I traveled together and took a little time to check out some of the sites, including Ford's theater and the Holocaust museum.

I also started this blog! 


I wrapped up yet another semester of grad school, with a huge accomplishment, all A's, and I'm talking no A-'s!! This felt super great considering I took three classes, was pregnant, and work was nothing short of stressful throughout the entire semester. 

I moved into a home office, that Finn and I painted and set up, since our office in Denver is being closed in the beginning of 2012. 

We had some of the coldest days and nights in recent memory and the chickens even got a little bit of frostbite.

We got an awesome little Christmas tree, and Finn hung up some very nice Christmas lights outside. We had the family over for our annual Christmas Eve party complete with White Elephant gift giving, Apples to Apples, Pictionary, food and lots of laughter. We spent Christmas day be-bopping between the families and got everything our little hearts desired.

We also got a late Christmas gift, an ultrasound to see the little one!