Saturday, February 28, 2009

Pregnancy Q & A - An email I received today.


Q: Should I have a baby after 35?
A: No, 35 children is enough.

Q : I'm two months pregnant now. When will my baby move?
A: With any luck, right after he finishes college.

Q : What is the most reliable method to determine a baby's sex?
A: Childbirth.

Q: My wife is five months pregnant and so moody that sometimes she's borderline irrational.
A: So what's your question?

Q : My childbirth instructor says it's not pain I'll feel during labour, but pressure. Is she right?
A: Yes, in the same way that a tornado might be called an air current.

Q: When is the best time to get an epidural?
A: Right after you find out you're pregnant.

Q : Is there any reason I have to be in the delivery room while my wife is in labour?
A: Not unless the word 'alimony' means anything to you.

Q: Is there anything I should avoid while recovering from childbirth?
A: Yes, pregnancy.

Q : Do I have to have a baby shower?
A: Not if you change the baby's diaper very quickly.

Q : Our baby was born last week. When will my wife begin to feel and act normal again?
A: When the kids are in college.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Picture Me

Picture me bundled in my sister's grey 3/4 length felt winter coat, a cute grey knit hat, black stick legs poking out the bottom hem, sporting (overkill for the weather) grey Columbia winter boots. 

Now picture that same grey felt coat busting it's snaps with every  move, the grey boots , size 10 shuffle through slush and salt as I navigate the parking lot with the grace of Bambi on ice.

I'm heading out for GNO (Girl's Night Out). I'm excited to see my girls it's been so long. How lucky for them I will be the designated driver, no drawing of straws tonight.  We are eight girls meeting at the new Moxie's restaurant. I arrive in the lobby looking around I see only the slightest built blond and brunette servers wearing even slighter outfits.  I feel very rotund even in my black dress hidden under my coat. 

I ask the hostess for our reservation. She informs me the table will not be ready for a few minutes, would I like to wait at the bar?  I opt for a trip to the ladies room. Upon my return she smiles at me and says, "Ma'am  your table is ready - follow me."

When I arrive to the table my girlfriends are already seated. They have giant fishbowl sized drinks in front of them it appears they have been here a while already. Hi! we all squeal girly greetings.  But I am not late?  How come you are all here with drinks served already? I am confused. 

The girls look at each other then they look at me. Together they push back their chairs and stand up from the table.  I shriek with delight, tears fill my hormonal eyes as I laugh and clap my hands together, I scream "You Guys!"  All eyes in the busy restaurant are on our table.

Each of my girls were sporting maternity tops and false bellies.  It is hysterical. "We've been where you are," Kimmy says. "We couldn't let ya do it alone!" Kelly says.

With that chaos ensued in the form of multiple waddling group trips to the ladies room,  ridiculous sized boozy drinks were perched on top of bellies for photo ops, servers stopped by our table to take in the spectacle, other diners lingered mouths agape trying to figure out just what was going on.  

Picture me.  Picture me, with the best friends a girl could ever ask for.
Now enjoy the pictures below.

The Girls!

Brandi & Kimmy


My Crazy Fun Seester Sue!

Lana Banana

Kathy (The real deal 18 weeks)

Me (The real deal 32 weeks)

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Michelley Belly - Bump 33 Weeks 5 Days

We had one hell of a growth spurt last week!

This pic is of me today just a few minutes before I taught Yoga.

I was a little uncomfortable last week for a few days; I had gut rot, heart burn, acne, headaches, feet in my ribs, a head on some nerves in my groin, I limped, I waddled, I slept sitting up ... I wined, I cried, I worried this was going to be the norm for the next five weeks, which made me fall into despair.  So  I did what I always do when I don't feel well.  I went to bed and I slept, I slept and I slept.  

And then Monday morning I awoke sporting a full on beach ball.  My super model walk returned, the Tums were put away, I lay off the Tylenol, hung some paintings, did the laundry stripped some wall paper ...ahhhh, normalcy restored.  That night I slipped into my hubby's Large T-shirt to sleep in and had to swap it out for his only XL t-shirt. I settled into bed
for a delicious horizontal sleep interrupted by only one 4 A.M meal ... and Tuesday was another fine day.  


Here are a few of the books I have read and am reading in preparation for the arrival of Baby P.

This book opens with birth stories spanning 20 years written by mother's who elected to have natural childbirth.  Such inspiring stories, and, what caught me is how supportive the women's network are during labour and delivery. Ina May talks a lot about the labouring process  shedding light on why labour will progress or halt and how to stay present during birth.  She emphasizes the "I am SO BIG" mantra. I am also going to adopt the "I AM SO BIG" mantra ... just so I don't freak out and wonder how baby will come out of what has always been an "in door." 

This is the book every feminist mother should read before delivering the baby.  Most mom's love to tell their personal birth stories, some wonderful some traumatic, some from back in the stone age...with all the conflicting stories on birth's it's best to find out just what happens and why during the delivery process .  Maybe I am armed with TOO much information but I would rather know in advance the reasons I might be rushed for a C-section, or why the baby would go into distress or why episiotomies are rarely performed anymore, etc.  This is the GO TO BOOK for all medical and natural childbirth techniques and the reasons for them. Warning: Henci Goer is a feminist writer who does not advocate for medically intervened deliveries. She does however go into detail about, cesareans, inducing labour, fetal monitoring, home births, epidurals, midwives, ob's, birth centres, and alternatives to high-tech births.  A great read!

Auntie Smelly Locks sent me this book.  It's informative and funny! Daddy P and I have shared a giggle reading this book.  The pictures and diagrams sprinkled through out this book are hilarious...especially the section for dad's.  During delivery dad's keep your sights on the task at hand. Do NOT watch the game on the big screen, leave the room for prolong periods of time, make business calls or texts, and for God's sake DO NOT EAT SMELLY FOODS!  See very wise advice.  But, it's not all fluff. This book is  co-written by a medical doctor the information is relevant and up to date.  There are practical chapters on preparing for baby including check lists and shopping lists that actually are helpful and the book is sturdy and pocket size!

This is the first book I bought when we found out we were knocked up.  I had seen it at every one's house I knew who had kids already and thought it was a good book. It is actually my least favorite book.  It's not that it's poorly laid out, it is well laid out, informative, and I do like the baby's development sections laid out by week...I just CAN'T STAND the DUMB jokes all through the book. They are actually repeated twice in one paragraph like maybe you didn't get it the first time. So very annoying especially if you want to go back and re-read a chapter, you have to endure the stupid jokes over again. Annoying enough to make me put the book down and search for another.  I know prego women can be forgetful but those stupid jokes are ingrained. No need for repeats. I find them HOAKY.  I was actually shocked when one of my four midwives suggested I buy and read this book.  The shock probably registered on my face too - thankfully I was on the bed, knees in stirrups staring up at a Georgia O'Keeffe painting on the tiled ceiling and she was looking into ...well you know.

Well here it is ... my current FAVORITE book.  Dr. Sears and his wife an R.N together have eight children two of whom are also Pediatricians have come together to pen this book. It's a very practical and very natural approach to child rearing.  This book takes us from the last trimester of pregnancy up to the baby's second birthday.  It covers everything from birth, Apgar, first pediatrician visits, breast feeding, baby wearing, sleeping for mom and baby, co-sleeping, introduction of solids, etc. It's the GRANOLA book for natural parenting and I LOVE it's philosophies.  This book was recommended by several friends and gifted to me by my friend Nee' who is a very new mom.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Knocked Up - Knock Off!

My Uncle Paul is a graphics wizard ... for my baby shower invitation he ripped my Ship Shape Productions business logo and knocked her up!   Haha!  I died laughing when I saw it ... such a talented and clever family I have! 

Here it is for your viewing pleasure. 

The original "before baby" logo is off to the far right of this blog.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Monday, February 9, 2009

This Is Why We Have Kids

At 31 weeks preggo I flew to Ottawa to visit family and friends and I stayed with my seester & her son. My nephew Aaron is the coolest kid.   He converses only in sign.  

When Aaron was an infant I would wake early to retrieve him from his crib, give him a quick change and  tuck him into bed with me to hang out. We read books, sang songs and snuggled. This is still our deal. Each morning this week he burst into my bedroom,  always so excited to see me still there, tucked into bed.   He would climb into bed next to me to snuggle or he simply pulled back the cover from my head to plant a kiss on my cheek before heading out to catch the school bus.  In fact, one day this week he FAKED sick to stay home with Auntie...and we had a great afternoon.  

Honestly, he's such a great love of my life!

My friend Lucky came from Toronto to visit me at my seester's house for the weekend. Lucky has come to Ottawa to visit countless times before and has quite a relationship with Aaron of her own.  Right on schedule Aaron arrived to say good morning and was stoked to see Auntie Lucky!   He is all elbows and knees lately. I covered my Baby P Bump with a pillow...just in case of a misguided limb as he climbed into bed right in between us.

  Let's just say Aaron kinda...

... LOVES Lucky!

Aaron was escorted out of bed and our room to let us sleep a little longer... but before he left, he dramatically blew us each a big kiss from the door way before slamming the door closed.

This is why we have kids. 

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Baby Blessing & Bead Ceremony

This is me at my shower for Baby P! 

Bead Ceremony
Everyone invited to the shower was asked to bring a bead and a blessing in the form of motherly advice and wishes for mother and baby.  The beads were thread together into a necklace that I could have as a focal point and symbol of my support network during birth and into motherhood. 

I had recently seen this ceremony roll out at another shower I had attended.  It was an amazing heartfelt emotional sharing of women - honoring their great roles in the sisterhood of women and motherhood. I immediately knew I wanted something like this for our shower.  Although no one at my shower had seen this ceremony before it was relaxed and rolled out beautifully. It brought our room together and it included those too far to travel to the shower to become present in the room by sending in their words and beads becoming as much a part of the shower and memory as though they were there in person.

Below is a picture of my gorgeous seester Sue reading the most beautiful words written by my Auntie Ann.  We were all a puddle as Ann's first words and set of beads were honoring my mother.  My seester and I have always thought of our mom as a tiny white cabbage butterfly ever since she passed away. When ever we see one we say hey look mom is here! Ann chose a white butterfly bead with a white pearl on either side to represent Sue & I.   Ann's bead for herself was a natural stone.  She spoke of representing earth and nature and the adventures Steve and I will share in the outdoors with our wee Baby P.  She reminded us that it is not what money can buy but time shared as a family in the simplest form that is truly what matters.

I received two HEIRLOOM beads. 
First my Uncle Neil sent along a seashell he had gotten at the Granby Zoo when he was 12!  He had kept it all these years and now it has a home on my necklace.  My Aunt Dianne passed along a beautiful blue glass bead that had belonged to my Great-Great Grandmother Louisa. She had had this bead tucked into her jewelry box just waiting for the right time to bring it out.
  How cool is that?

This bead represents "I Love you to the Moon and Back" a line from the book Guess How Much I Love You - my cousin Jen's favorite book to read to her son Wyatt. She said - Just wait - there is no greater love than the love you will have for your child. It's unfathomable until it happens.

Voila my boobs...I mean beads!

As you can see Baby P and I were blessed with so many wonderful beads. Bumpy ones to represent the bumps along the road, a Betsey Johnson bead so baby will have style and friends who give them Betsey just like mommy, wings to show baby P how to soar on her/his own, a multi faceted bead to represent all sides of parenting, heart shaped beads to represent my friends beautiful children and for love.  

Advice: community helps raise a child,  reminders that a mother's "me" time makes for a more grounded mother - not to forget to take some, sleep when the baby sleeps, laugh a lot- you need a sense of humour to parent, be patient and lead by example.

Beads arrived from:  My cousin Chris and his girlfriend Angie sent from Vancouver, beads and blessings from Steve's cousins Laurie and Kelly and Aunts Cindy and Judy mailed in from Windsor, London and Chatham Ontario.

Monday, February 2, 2009

Baby P's Shower

Sunday, February 1st, my Seester Sue, my Aunts Ann & Dianne and friend Smelly Locks threw a shower for Baby P. It was lots of fun and very busy and I gotta say a little overwhelming.

My aunts and my mother always got together to make little "Shower Sandwiches" for each of the showers in our family. It has become one of my favorite girl dates with my aunts. It's all about the girl gab, sharing updates, family stories and of course retaining and passing on the art of the mini shower sandwich recipe.

I don't live in the same city as my family, so, as often as I can be home to attend a shower I pop into help out with the sandwiches. We met at Auntie Ann's to make sandwiches for my cousin Tracey's wedding shower, and we met at Aunt Dianne's to make sandwiches for my cousin Yana's baby shower and of course I had to join in the fun for Baby P's shower!

"Sa-Miche" fillings:Egg, chicken curry, ham, tuna, salmon and at Seester Sue's request cherry & cream cheese! 

Cousin Tracey - is rolling out the bread to flatten it.

Auntie Dianne -should probably have her own House & Home Show.

This is Auntie Ann - spreading the filling before rolling the "Sa-Miche" up like a sleeping bag. We then cut them so we have circles of swirled up bread and filling. So Pretty!

I will ask around to see who has a photo of the finished product, plated and lovely...unfortunately with the gong show going on I failed to get a photo of the table all set!

Here's the thing with the mini shower "Sa-Miches" - I could never sit and eat two regular sandwiches but I can eat 10 mini sandwiches...why?

And the cake was the show stopper!

 If you are in Ottawa... you can order a cake from The Girl With The Most Cake

Baby P did get some fabulous gifts:

I wish I could post everything - but- I will say a lot of thought went into the gifts. Some brought items their first born loved, books, little organic outfits, a bamboo blanket that is SO SOFT, a beautiful silver necklace with a soother and momma charm, a sock monkey and a beautiful damask printed chenille and satin blankey I know Baby P will love (I now because if it were adult size Daddy P would be snuggled in it on the couch refusing to share it) and lots of receiving blankets. Baby P will not be cold!

Here are but a few of the really neat, unusual and eco favorites!

Klean Kanteen with Sippy Tops

Organic Mattress cover & Canadian made bib with a crumb catcher!

Quebec Canada hand carved maple bowl and spoon & Green to Grow bottle. The top three gifts came from Chiquita Baby in Ottawa.

A sexy nursing bra by Elle McPherson, Tough Titties Nipple Balm, Bad Ass Booty Balm and Heelarious patent high heel baby shoes....boy or girl Baby P will wear them!

Organic baby blanket and teething toy and some lavender oils- to help induce and speed up labour for when that time comes.

The BEST gift Baby P and I received all day was meeting Baby Bee.  Congratulations Nee & Jeff she is SO marvelous. Such a little wonder. I LOVE her!