March 3, 2015

40 Weeks! Come on Winnie!

Forty Weeks Status:Weight: 179 lbs.
Estimated Baby Size: Small Pumpkin 7.5+lbs.
Tomorrow is Winnie Jane's due date! I really hope that she decides not to disappoint and instead to be punctual. I'm doing okay with the wait so far, but a little anxious that she'll be another stubborn baby like her big brother Izaak. Needless to say, I am more than ready to welcome her, my pastor's wife, a lady from church and a close friend threw us her baby shower at our church this past week, and many of the few things we still needed were purchased for us, or purchased with gift cards that were generously given.

I have been nesting like a mad woman lately, even going so far as to label and organize the linen closet and clean and touch up the paint on the baseboards and trim areas throughout the house. Now with the last load of gifted clothes laundered and put away (at least the things for the next few months) it really is a waiting game at this point.

I hope for not much longer though! The midwife at my appointment last Friday said that Winifred has dropped. My pastor's wife had said she thought so on Wednesday, but I hadn't even noticed! Real attentive there mama! 

This is a good sign, but as with most of the signs of "imminent labor", it really doesn't mean anything more than she will make her appearance "soon." So far the dreaded "are you in labor yet?" comments have not come flooding in...I am hopeful most of my friends and family will have enough tact not to ask, and realize that we will let everyone know.  Nothing worse than impatient friends and family to put pressure on a one wants the baby out sooner than me after all! I can guarantee that! I try to update things at least once a day for them though, because I know it's hard for them to wait too! :) 

Well, that's about it...I'm waiting as patiently as possible to love and hold my little girl. God's timing is best, and I will keep reminding myself of that.  Prayers appreciated! The weather has been a roller coaster lately, and we're hoping she decides to come during one of the non-threatening days coming up instead of the icy, snowy few.

I'll post a few pictures of the baby preparations below:
New swing/bouncer/rocker that plugs in!

Pack n play! Hospital bag, and Winnie's Violet to match her brothers' Scouts.

Winnie is sharing a room with Mommy for the first year, love her crib set! A gift from a friend :)
Sharing Mommy's closet too!
We bought this when we were expecting Sebastian, a cute organizer for all her accessories at the moment!

Carseat and mirror ready to go, we'll install before we head home from the hospital.

Our battery's a bit sluggish these days, been passed down and well used a couple times, but nice to have for the upstairs when I need it.

Co-sleeper and changing supplies for minimal mommy sleep disruption.

And there you have it! We're ready! Come on Winnie!!!!

February 6, 2015

36 weeks - Home Stretch!

Thirty-Six Weeks Status:Weight: 174 lbs.
Estimated Baby Size: Head of Romaine Lettuce 6+lbs.Home stretch!  And there is lots of stretching going on! Winifred's got some long legs, and she likes to stretch them right up into my ribs... I would complain about it, but I'm overjoyed her legs are what are jabbing me, as she was taunting me with a breech position over the past couple of weeks. I've also got some stretch marks making their third trimester comeback...but they don't bother me!

I am now a firm believer in the efficacy of Webster's Technique in Chiropractic care.
When I went for my 34 week check-up the Midwife said that she was lying transverse, which is a funky breech position...she then turned upward and had her head rolling around near my ribs for a bit. All of this threw my pelvic balance way off...I was having Symphysis issues previously from all the Relaxin, so having her doing acrobatics and using my pelvis as her springboard seemed to make things worse.

Thankfully Webster technique was able to correct all the sublaxations, and by the second adjustment, just minutes afterward, I felt her flip over and start kicking me in my ribs. Just today we had an ultrasound to confirm, that she is indeed head down...although you can't see that in the pic:

You can see her cute little chubby cheeks though :)

I'm soooo happy she flipped, as a lot of the discomfort has vanished now that she's in a more balanced position. She is still in an  less than perfect position for labor, as she is Right Occiput Posterior (a position many breech babies will land in when they flip), but she has plenty of time to turn a bit, and I still have a few more chiropractic appointments before she's due.

I just can't wait to touch those chubby cheeks and kiss that little head!  Love my sweet girl. Her brothers are equally excited to meet her. None more than Leopold, who is always asking to "see Witifwed" and loves talking to her:

As an added bonus today after the good news ultrasound, a gift from Granny arrived: 

A beautiful home-made super cozy quilt! Love the colors!

January 31, 2015

Crafting for Winifred!

C'mon, you knew this was coming: 

Ribbons and Bows

As had to be expected, since the announcement of a baby girl was made, countless projects have been on my to-do list. The first of which, was the traditional mommy-made baby blanket.

I couldn't stop with just one though...

The first I did was a Chevron pattern I found online, and I just love it because it reminds me of W's, perfect for Winnie!

After hearing that I was experiencing a lot of problems with Symphysis Pubis Dysfunction,( AWFUL PAIN IN THE PELVIS) my mom paid a visit in the New Year, and she had her own projects in mind as well:

Beautiful handmade flannel swaddling blankies!!!  I love them so much! :)

When I was at Hobby Lobby picking out the fabric for one of the flannel blankets, I found some awesome super bulky and soft yarn and knew I wanted to make Winnie another blanket, that was a little more breathable and soft then the tight-stitched chevron blanket, so this was the next project:

I am also working on an embroidery project for her nursery, teaching myself the is SO fun and I highly recommend it to stitch-obsessed folks who haven't tried it...and also, turning some of the boys neutral leftovers into girly items, and repairing some awesome heirloom items passed down from my mom that my grandmother knit.  I'm in crafting heaven just dreaming away about Winnie :)


Oh, and I better not forget! It was Izaak's birthday last week!

He wanted a Paw Patrol birthday, and although we had planned to have it on his actual birthday, we decided last minute to have it when my mom was here, and so we stressed ourselves out, although well worth it, to throw it all together last minute. Fondant was my enemy, but it all turned out great in the end!

IZAAK's Party:

December 22, 2014

29 Weeks

Twenty-Nine Weeks Status:
Estimated Baby Size: Butternut Squash
I know it's been a while since I posted, but it's been busy busy busy!

Halloween has come and gone, the kids don't really go trick or treating, but we let them dress up and give them candy. We had a Reformation celebration at church that Andy and our friend Scott organized with the pastor and his wife playing roles in a pretty funny skit. It was a really fun time.

A pic of the boys dressed up:

We also were blessed with a visit from Gramps and Grammy Robin. It was so much fun taking in the lovely fall weather, walking all over and exploring Richmond, and just getting to spend some time with them. It, of course, felt too short, because we know it will likely feel too long before we see them again, but we are so glad they got to come out and walkabout with us.

Since then, we've gone through a couple bouts of illness and have been just struggling, it seems, to keep ourselves well. But we've also had a lot of fun. We have been busy with our church choir program for Christmas, as both Andy and I dusted off our orchestral instruments to play in the orchestra accompaniment for the two concerts we gave.  It was so much fun playing my french horn again, even if my third rotor string broke and I had to remember alternate fingerings that had almost evacuated my brain from years of not practicing.  Regardless of the mishap, it was a great experience and a great way to glorify our heavenly father at Christmas time!

Winifred seems to be growing excellently, despite my "I'm sick and don't want to eat" diet, and her heartbeat has been strong and all has been well at all of her/my appointments.

The above belly shot was taken at our little Christmas-time getaway. We decided, since the boys are such huge fans of hotels, that we would treat them to an in-town hotel getaway, and we spent a couple nights at a hotel up in Short Pump. They had fun playing in the pool, watching the rerun of The Sound of Music Live on TV,  going to yet another Sushi King, driving around to see Richmond's famous tacky Christmas lights displays, and celebrating Daddy's birthday at a brewpub.  Good times! Christmas is this week, so the house is decked out, and we'll just be celebrating at home this year.  We are looking forward to a New Year complete with a new baby, and possibly a new minivan to fit her more comfortably! :)
More pics:

Tacky Christmas Lights

Daddy's Birthday

They fell asleep watching the Sound of Music at the hotel:

October 20, 2014

20 Weeks and Surprise!!!!

Twenty Weeks Status:
Estimated Baby Size: Banana

So much has happened in the past few weeks that it will be a wonder if I can cram it all into this post sufficiently.

I will just gloss over some of the non-baby related things because as I mentioned earlier, this is indeed the moment of the big news, gender reveal!

Over the last few weeks, we have settled into a good homeschooling routine, and ESL teaching has been a highly rewarding venture. I really look forward to going to see my Spanish-speaking ladies on Thursdays, and my fellow teacher Marci is always a joy to spend time with.

On the 8th my dad finally received his long-awaited hip surgery, and he has made great strides of recovery since then, go dad!

Before that, we celebrated both Leopold's second birthday, and Sebastian's fifth.  I always really enjoy putting together their parties, even though it is a lot of work. It's just so much fun to see their faces light up and try my best to make their day really special.

Leopold's party was all about "Mighty Machines" or construction vehicles, and I found a cool recipe on Pinterest for a construction or caution tape pattern using yellow cake and dark chocolate cake layers cut into diagonal concentric was fun to learn the process, and I think it turned out really cute!

Sebastian's party was Super Mario themed. He and his brothers are all quite taken with the fantastical world of the Super Mario Brothers--they love playing it on the Wii. I'll post a few pictures below of the party celebrations. I can't believe I've been a mom for five years, or that Leopold will be TWO! It's a good thing there's another baby on the way or I might've just cried their whole birthdays long!

LEOPOLD's Party:


Well, leading up to the big gender reveal I became less convinced of the reliability of the Ramzi method for predicting gender when the Ultrasound tech is not in on the discussion and interpreting accurately where everything is.  This means that for all three previous Ramzi methods that had proved correct, it was a good possibility they were all coincidence!

OK, so last week I told my mom, who was still dreaming pink despite my assurance that Wombat was a little dude, that her hopes could be realized again.

And what do you know? SURPRISE! There is a bona fide Wombette growing snugly in my belly :) To say I was over the moon, is just not adequate. I was over Jupiter or Pluto! And quite honestly, I was in shock to hear the news, or rather, see the news! I knew she was a girl the second I saw the ultrasound, after seeing three successive boys, I could tell that "something was missing," haha!

Andy, of course, had to make that joke aloud to me and the ultrasound tech.  

I was so excited to call everyone and tell them the astonishing news..."A Schwartz child was going to be born that did not have a Y chromosome!"...that I was in a daze walking to get the car from the hospital valet service. Yes... valet service. No, not because we were too posh to park; the visitor parking is always jam-packed and the parking attendents give out free vouchers for their very inconvenient and slow valet service when it's over capacity.  Anyone who has visited VCU / MCV can surely commiserate.  The valet line usually wraps around the block when the parking lot is full...

Anyways, her name will be Winifred Jane. :) It was easily agreed upon by both Andy and I, and we love it.  Andy's great-grandmother's name on his mom's side was Winifred, and she was apparently a pretty awesome lady. Also, we love the name because it invokes memories of one of our and the boys' favorite films: Mary Poppins. If you recall, the mother in the flick is named Winifred, and the daughter is Jane.  It imparts her with an air of vintage whimsy, and I am already teeming with ideas for her nursery...

Anyways, I'll post the ultrasound pictures, only slightly doctored, and the announcement picture we posted to Facebook below... It's not the best announcement photo, but my phone was dying and everyone was asking the results, so we ran into Kid to Kid and got a little pink dressed and snapped a quick belly shot with my phone so I could update everyone before it died. Then we celebrated with some well-enjoyed lunch at Sushi King. By far our favorite Japanese restaurant in the area...highly recommend it!

See ya soon!

September 17, 2014

Sixteen Weeks!

Sixteen Weeks Status:
Estimated Baby Size: Avocado

It's amazing what a difference two weeks can make on a baby bump! Wombat is now officially not in hiding, and I can stop feeling like I'm just bloated and awkward and start showing off the W bump! The great gender reveal is not far off, and will conveniently happen on my parents anniversary, Oct 20th, so that will be exciting to reveal to them as an anniversary gift. Wouldn't it be nice if they finally got a granddaughter as a present???

We shall see...

September 6, 2014

Fourteen Weeks

Fourteen Weeks Status:Weight: 146 lbs.
Estimated Baby Size: Lemon

Five weeks have passed since Wombat had his first ultrasound. I have another appointment in two days and have enjoyed being able to say I am now in the Second trimester all week. Always a nice milestone!

I have definitely had much more energy for the last three weeks or so and feel more human again. I have been really bad about exercising though, and have decided to buckle down. I know for a fact now all the good I was doing myself in my other pregnancies by staying on top of the prenatal fitness, because the lack of it this time is all too evident.  My back has been really bugging me, and my posture is worsening.

I am determined to remedy all of this though, I started slow with two very spaced out workouts this week. I will try for three next week, and one every other day the following week.  It's hard because I really only have a chance right after the kids go to bed, and the kitchen gets cleaned up, and that is probably when I'm the least motivated to do anything physical, much less torment myself with cheesy workout DVDs.

10 weeks 6 days
I cycle through three different discs usually, so at least it's not the same one every time.  I highly recommend Summer Sanders' & Erin O'Brien's workouts...and if you can put up with her, Leisa Hart's prenatal workout always leaves me feeling straightened out and better prepared because of its focus on labor prep breathing, posture, and stretching.  I've tried countless other ones, just to add variety, but these are the only three that I've stuck with and not wanted to chuck out of a window. At least not usually...

The reason I haven't posted for five weeks was because Andy was travelling a lot. It seemed like every other day he was overnighting it. I also had Sebastian start homeschooling early, to prepare for the time off we'll be taking when Wombat arrives.  He loves school, and I can only hope my other three will take to it as enthusiastically as he has, although I am not holding out hope.  They all have graciously gifted minds! And, yes, I'm probably biased in that opinion...

I will start teaching ESL next Thursday as well, so my schedule will not get any easier, but hopefully Andy's will be a little easier now that his annual Summit is finished.  We had another ultrasound when wombat was 10 weeks 6 days...he was being stubborn and hiding during the sonogram so they sent me for a freebie. He measured a little long, which is not that surprising I guess. Thankfully the US tech this time printed out a much better picture (see above).

Well, hopefully on Monday I will get a better idea of when the big gender reveal will be...although I seem to remember it is usually around 22 weeks, which means I have a long wait still. Trying to enjoy it as it comes. Love this trimester so it's not hard to do!