Friday, February 27, 2015

Healthy Pregnancy Snack Ideas

Let's just put it out there...my first 13 weeks were fairly miserable.  I had good days so I can't complain too much but the nausea just knocked me off my feet for days at a time! 
 
That made it impossible to eat, which made me feel worse, and the cycle was so vicious.
 
I have a few theories (#2 in that link) about why my nausea was so intense.  But despite those first hard months,  I am enthusiastically focusing on eating healthfully and holistically once every 1-2 hours to keep my blood sugar levels stable and get in enough calories and nutrients
 
Here are my favorite daily snacks...
 
Avocado, pretzels, and carrot sticks
 
The pretzel is extra yummy dipped in the avocado and the carrots add a crunch/slightly sweet element to the snack
 
 
Familia Swiss-Muesli with greek yogurt and berries
 
We actually found this muesli when we lived in Saudi Arabia and LOVED it then.  It's full of hearty whole grain oats, dried apples, shredded whole wheat and rye, raisins, ground hazelnuts and roasted almonds
 
 
Larabars
 
If you've ever tried these you know they have about 5 simple ingredients.  So yummy and full of lots of delicious vitamins and nutrients
 
 
Nuts
 
I'll make a trail mix of sorts with almonds, cashews, walnuts and even pretzels or pumpkin seeds if I have them on hand.  This is wonderful for getting in essential fatty acids.
 
 
Fruit/Veggie Smoothies
 
This is how I survived those first few weeks!  The pictured smoothie is greek yogurt, kefir, strawberries, banana, clementines, and orange juice.  Normally I throw in an enormous handful of spinach, chia seeds, and coconut oil too.
 
 
 Greek Yogurt
 
The sugar content might be a little higher than I like, but I love Chobani yogurts.  I couldn't stomach just eating a big cup of plain yogurt so I needed some extra fluff in there.  The strawberry/banana, raspberry, and peach are divine with fruit or nuts mixed in
 
 
I hope these help you or give you a few, but diverse, menu ideas to select from if you are having trouble.  Healthy eating is delicious and fun...as long as you feel up to actually eating ;)
 
I've got a healthy salmon salad and leftover smoothie in the fridge waiting for me for lunch!  Happy eating!

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Pregnancy Week 13

What does Grumples and Poppy's big hairy mugs have to do with me being 13 week preggo?
 
Um, nothing.
 
But I was sufficiently sick and miserable all weekend and we didn't even get a dang weekly picture.  That one time that I thought my energy was going back up...was a little pre-enthusiastic.  I had a few good days but was mostly sick last week (and earlier this week).
 
Oh well. 
 

Alas, I shall still complete the weekly questionnaire!
 
Week 13 Pregnancy Questionnaire

Baby size: A peach

My weight gain so far: 3 lbs, no increase this week

Food Favs: Cheerios, big berry smoothies, walnuts, pretzels, citrus, Lean Cuisine's Spinach Mushroom pizza (ha!) lemon drops, greek yogurt, salad, bell peppers, popsicles, chocolate chip cookies

Foods hates:  This week I particularly want to murder the person that discovered ground turkey--still just EW!!! I'm still not keen at all to chili, garlic, onion, greasy, most meats, refried beans, and cheese

3 Pros of Week 13:
1. Starting Tuesday I was a little less nauseous and even went on a hike with the doodles!
2. Ryan sent me to get a wonderful prenatal massage that made me feel like a million bucks
3. I started eating eggs again recently and that is really encouraging me that someday I won't despise all food

3 Cons of Week 12:
1. I can really feel my joints loosened up and seem to easily over-extend things
2.  My appetite, I fear, will never return.  I truly eat for the calories but not for the taste :(
3. Peeing 5-6 time in the night

Best moment of the week:
 I ate a hardboiled egg!  And I went out to lunch with my mom and Ryan and could order something off the menu!  It was super plain, but restaurants made me so queasy for awhile.  Win.
 
Ryan:
He is in the habit of texting to ask how our little on is doing during the day which just makes me so happy!  He got a little progress done on a map that will be hung in the nursery and has been researching his life away on safe carseats and strollers.

Monday, February 23, 2015

On Being Brave

When I sat down for coffee a week or so ago with a close, very sweet friend I knew I would be learning something new.  I always do with this lady!  

We started talking about my pregnancy, and of course while I knew this already, we wound our way into how they are also hoping and trying for a little one too.  And so far it's proven to not be their time just yet.

I told her how grateful I was for her sharing.  Because she didn't just say that they were trying...

...but that she WANTED this.  A lot.  A whole lot.

I was so moved by her bravery to own that.  It takes so much more courage to say I want this, I'm hoping for this, my heart's set on this, I'm invested in this...

Isn't that much more the risky, vulnerable stance than to try and nonchalantly pretend it has no real hold on our heart?

It goes for every area of life really.  Not just pregnancy.  I told this sweet friend how grateful I was for her transparency and willingness to let me into her heart.  Because perhaps if the thing we want doesn't come to fruition, having taken the risk of being brave means we get to have a shield around us of people cheering us on to more courage and to hold us up when the disappointment is crippling.

Be brave today.  In some small way.

I've been blessed with a solid example already

.
Be strong, and let your heart take courage, all you who wait for the LORD!

Psalm 31:24

Saturday, February 21, 2015

1st Trimester Pregnancy Must-Haves

As I sat down to write this I realized how "first-world" this post really must really sound...shoot.

Well these aren't essentials (aka ya know, water and food), but they are a few little comforts that have made my first 13 weeks a tiny bit smoother.  And maybe will help you if you're preggers or know someone who is too.

 Because believe me when I say there were a few rough patches!

Ryan will attest.  Amen.

First up...

Decaf coffee.  Bless thine inventor.  For reals people, load this up with milk and honey and you can turn any bad day right around!
 

Lemon drops and spearmints.  There was many an hour where it was all I could do to just get one of these down.  Such wonderful, mild flavors.


Pregnancy Tea. This tea is so mild and comforting.  I like it best early in the morning with raw honey.


Soft maternity shirts.  My mom has been the most enthusiastic about making sure I am well stocked in maternity clothes even though my belly is just barely poking out.  Thanks mama!  I am LIVING in this shirt from Target's Liz Lange line.  

With leggings and boots it is perfection.


 Mother To Be tea.  A friend gave me this box of tea (along with amazing stack of pregnancy books) and I really enjoy it!  Mild, red raspberry and spearmint that's refreshing and super yummy anytime of day.


Mama Bee products.  Another dear friend got me these as a gift and I LOVE them!  Adore actually.  The belly butter is so thick and rich.  And the body oil smells like a lemon drop.  Both are amazing post-shower.


 So just a few little goodies here that I'll be indulging in all pregnancy long actually! 

Happy products = happy mama


Thursday, February 19, 2015

Lunch and This Week

Earlier this week I got out of class a little early and Ryan also had a free lunch hour!  So we went to Mod Market right near his work and had a great time!  I love quality time with this guy.  

He told me about a new program he is helping develop at work and we processed where our little one is at in their growth this week.  I filled him in on school and what had happened in my day.  Even 45 minutes together was so connecting!

Since so little food actually sounds good right now still, I was thankful that a big salad was at least not totally repulsive.  And this place is so fresh that it all went in pretty easily.

Ryan enjoying a big salad with chicken, avocado, black beans, and corn

I had the Thai chicken sweet potato salad

After lunch the doodles were needing some exercise so we headed to a very snowy park for a little hike around.  They promptly got a snow beard and icy paws so we didn't stay longer than 20 minutes.

They were happy babies.

I finally made it to the gym for a real work out!  I've gotten in spurts of mile walks or half workout and then gotten too sick to carry on.  But yesterday we rock climbed for 30 minutes and then did 20 minutes of some great cardio.  I feel great today but was pretty wiped last night!


The rest of the week is full.  I'm bringing dinner to brand new baby Isaac Stewart (well, to his parents but he is the highlight!).  Friday I have clinical all day and Ryan is of course busy at work.  We are looking forward to lunch with Tyler and Anna and their kiddos on Saturday if it doesn't snow too much!

The weather is predicted to dump up to a foot of snow in Golden since we are in the foothills.  While I love the thought of getting snowed we still want to do lunch, get in a snowshoe hike, and get to church still.  We shall see!

Happy rest of your week :)

"You are the God who sees me," for she said, "I have now seen the One who sees me"

Genesis 16:13

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Finding Out and Week By Week...

We found out on December 19 that I was pregnant.  It was my last day of quarter 5 and I had two long, important finals to take.  We were suspicious that I was preggers or a few reasons...

I'm talking sleeping 12-14 hours a night and if I couldn't get that much sleep I was dying for a 2 or 3 hour nap.  I have never experienced anything like it.  Ryan was running our household like a champ  while I slept my life away and I am so grateful for him.

His most suspicious moment was one night when I came home and went to bed at 6:30 pm, woke up to each 2  slices of pizza and 4 cookies, and promptly went back to sleep for 12 hours straight...HA!!

 Anyone who knows me knows that is SO unlike me!

Oh my I was SO sick in this picture.  Ryan let me pull the doodles up on the couch to help me feel better

One of the best parts of this whole story is that I hadn't even missed my period yet before I took a pregnancy test at home.  Ryan and I had plans to take one together in the coming weekend if I was late. But I had a spare test at home and some extra time on my hands so I took the test myself a day early.

POSITIVE!  

I almost fell of my seat and was in total disbelief.  I picked up two more tests from Target since I knew my engineer husband would want to "make sure" and also some cute baby onsies for him to open up and figure it all out.

He opened up the onsies and my positive test from earlier...his response made me laugh so loud.  He looked at everything and with huge eyes said, "Is this for real?"  Then he proceeded to do some kind of fertlity dance around our kitchen and couldn't stop smiling.

It was such a precious moment.

We found out just in time to share the news with our families at each Christmas celebration.  That was something we were just peeing out pants with excitement over!  It was the perfect time of year to find out.

So we shared at 4 weeks with our families and then waited another 2-3 weeks to start sharing with close friends.

Overall, people have celebrated, screamed, hyperventilated, cried, cheered, and covered us with love and prayers. We were overwhelmed with support.

As far as week by week experiences go I have been keeping a little journal to I don't forget:

Week 5
Sx: Tired, tired, tired.  At 5 weeks and 3 days I was crushed with morning all day sickness.  UGH!  No vomiting but extreme nausea that laid me out flat.  And super tender breasts (TMI!)
Cravings: Salt, salt, salt and citrus.  I wanted oranges, clementines, lemonade, smoothies, and salty food
Aversions:  White cheddar cheese, eggs, and Subway sandwiches.  UGH!!!!
Preparation:  We decided to deliver at St. Joe's with a midwife.  We both had the week after Christmas off and toured several facilities and did lots research.  We also bought a crib and get it set up.  We are on top of things!
Ryan:  He is just over the moon about this baby!  He kisses my stomach, talks to it, and literally treats me like a princess.  He has been an outstanding husband and daddy-to-be!

Baby gifts from my parents for my birthday

Week 6:
Sx: I've learned how to manage the nausea with very, very frequent eating.  I literally set my alarm for 2:00 am, 4:30 am, and 6:00 am to eat.  I keep smoothies, crackers, soup, greek yogurt and citrus on hand or at the beside.  The hunger and blood sugar drop hits me like a ton of bricks and I have to be prepared or I am miserable for 45 minutes trying to catch up
Cravings: Salt :)  More citrus-I could live in an orange grove for the rest of my life and be happy.  Something may sounds good one minute and th next I want to throw it up.  So it's hard to say what sounds good
Aversions:  More like what doesn't make me sick?? Eggs, cheese, greasy anything, UGH I can't go on...
Ryan:  We picked out our baby room color (the lighest green/turquoise) and he is so ready to get painting.  He is particularly interested in our nursery rocker so he's been shopping around for that.  He keeps taking the BEST care of me and is so attentive.  He is just thrilled and his excitement grows by the week!

SO SICK Week 7-10 so no real journal here
-Nausea, migraines with vomiting, weakness, fatigue.  These weeks were hard with few good days

Week 11
Sx: Middle of the night snacking has re-started so I'm getting used to that again.  I'm still very tired, sleeping 9-12 hours a night.  Nausea is on and off.
Cravings: Citrus, pretzels, yogurt, fruity popsicles, crackers.  "Crave" is such a weird word since food just sounds terrible and I'm only eating for the calories
Aversions:  EVERYTHING!  It seems like.  Eggs, cheese, grease, refried beans, chili, ground turkey
Ryan:  He started reading "The Happiest Baby On the Block" and is busy learning from iPhone apps and reading.  We saw our baby on an ultrasound this week and he proclaimed it was the coolest thing he's ever seen!

Ryan brushing up on his baby book reading

I just don't want to forget all these details in the future!  It's so fun to record it here to be able to reflect on later.  More posts to come.

Monday, February 16, 2015

Week 12 [updated!]

*I edited this to include my week to week pregnancy survery!*

I wanted to get this picture up before I forgot!  All I can say is that weeks 5 to 11 were ROUGH.  Nauseous every day, no appetite, beyond tired.  The nausea is what was killing me, my goodness!  It literally was like the flue for 6 straight weeks.

But some ladies have it so much worse and I won't complain because it seems week 12 is my golden hour :)

My appetite is definitely not fully back.  I eat to avoid blood sugar drops and nausea but on the whole I am awaiting the day that something sounds delicious!

We are so grateful to be growing and loving this little one already.  It blows our minds that a little Decker is living inside this uterus of mine!  Just WOW!  We are crazy about him/her already.

Week 12 Pregnancy Questionnaire

Baby size: A large plum!

My weight gain so far: 3 lbs

Food Favs: Citrus, lemon drops, greek yogurt, big salads, bell peppers, swiss museli, cold cereal, fruit, turkey sandwiches with cream cheese, popsicles

Foods hates:  Hmmm...what DOESN'T make this list??  Ground turkey, chili, soups, garlic, onion, greasy anything, fast food, so so so many things

3 Pros of Week 12:
1. Feeling stronger and a little less nauseous
2. Have the energy again to climb, hike, do yoga, get the dogs to the park
3. Wearing leggings and lots of comfortable soft clothing

3 Cons of Week 12:
1.  Peeing so many times during the night
2.  No real appetite still
3. No other big complaints!

Best moment of the week:
 Well this happened last week but we got to see our little one swimming around in there on our first ultrasound!  We were over the moon and went out to celebrate at our favorite restaurant after.

Ryan: He has been so thrilled with everything and is taking excellent care of me!  He is working on a frame for hte baby room, has already assembled a crib and a rocker, and looks up new info on the baby every day.  He is the greatest dad already!

Sons are a heritage from the LORD, children a reward from him.

Psalm 127:3

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