September 2015 archive

Nordstrom Baby Picks

Nordstrom-Bellevue-Square-Kids-Section-PanoramaIf you’ve been to Nordstrom in the last few months, you know that they have significantly upgraded their kids section. They have expanded outside of clothes and accessories and have begun selling strollers, cribs, highchairs and tons of other baby gear. If you know me, you know that Nordstrom is my all-time favorite store. I’ve been a loyal Nordy girl since my mother first introduced me to this fantastic store as a little girl. So you can imagine how upset I am that they haven’t started a baby registry program yet. I keep saying I’m going to write a letter to headquarters and suggest it. In the meantime, I just keep filling my online shopping cart with all of my favorite baby products. So here’s what I would have registered for if Nordstrom had a baby registry…

1 // Stokke Sleepi Mini Crib – So I wouldn’t actually expect someone to buy a crib for us as a shower gift, but I would still include it on the registry so that when we purchased it ourselves, I could get my Nordstrom points. I’ll talk more about this crib in my nursery post, but for now I’ll just say that I am absolutely in love with it.

2 // aden + anais ‘Serenity Star’ Baby Monitor – This is one of the top products on my registry list. This product is a clock, nightlight, feeding diary, temperature gauge and a sound machine all wrapped up into a cute little decor item for your baby’s nursery. It’s also portable so you can bring it with you when you travel.

3 // Ubbi Diaper Pail – This diaper pail is made of steel so that it won’t retain dirty diaper odors. It also comes in a ton of colors so you can find the exact shade for your baby’s nursery. It can hold up to 35 diapers and doesn’t require any special trash bags.

4 // The Honest Company ‘City’ Faux Leather Diaper Backpack – There are a ton of cute diaper bags on the market, but it’s surprisingly difficult to find one that would work for dad as well. I don’t want my husband to be embarrassed to carry our baby’s diaper bag when he’s on duty. This backpack is chic, functional and gender neutral.

5 // OXO Tot ‘Sprout’ Chair – Most highchairs are the opposite of cute. I understand that our house is going to look very different after our baby is born, but the more products I can find that fit into the decor of our house, the better. The legs of this highchair match our kitchen table perfectly.

6 // Barefoot Dreams CozyChic Robe – Sam and I both have the adult version of this robe so our baby has to have one too. And I know the price seems outrageous, but if you’ve ever touched a Barefoot Dreams robe or blanket, you know they are worth every single penny.

7 // Gund Comfy Cozy Bear Blanket – Our townhouse has hardwood floors throughout so I’m shopping for a few ultra plush rugs for our living room and the nursery. I love this blanket because it will add a little extra cushion during tummy time and diaper changes on the floor.

8 // Dr. Browns All-in-One Baby Bottle Gift Set – My sister-in-law used Dr. Browns bottles with my niece and had great results so I’m hoping our baby will love them too. This set is amazing for new moms because it includes everything you need to get started with bottle-feeding.

9 // nuna ‘Sena’ Travel Crib – A travel crib is an absolute must for us. Not only do we travel a lot (mostly to visit my family in Northern Virginia), but we also live in a townhouse that would never be described as “baby friendly.” We have a modern, open staircase with an iron railing – I’m already having nightmares. So I plan to keep this travel crib in our living room for times when I need to use the restroom, cook, etc.

10 // ERGObaby ‘360’ Carrier – I’ve read all about the benefits of babywearing so I’ve already picked out a few different carriers that I want to try. I love this one because it can be used in four different positions. And from what I’ve read, it’s one of the most comfortable carriers on the market. (I’m also dying for this one.)

11 // Comotomo Baby Slow Flow Bottles – I am planning to breastfeed, but I am not against pumping and using bottles when necessary. Especially since I know my husband will want to feed the baby too. I’ve read that these bottles are great because they are soft and squeezable and therefore mimic breastfeeding. I’m planning to use these when we first introduce bottles.

12 // Mustela Newborn Set – I think gift sets like this one make perfect baby shower gifts. I’m super overwhelmed by all of the baby bath products on the market, but I’ve read a ton of great reviews on Mustela products so they’re at the top of my list.

13 // Stokke ‘Steps’ Bouncer – I love this bouncer because 1) it isn’t a million different colors with a bunch of animals on it, 2) it can be used with Stokke’s ‘Steps’ Chair and 3) it looks really plush and comfortable.

14 // Puj Infant Tub – I have an irrational fear about bathing newborns, but this tub makes it seem less scary. It can easily fit into the bathroom sink in the nursery and we can hang it flat to dry after each bath.

15 // Salisbury Pewter Personalized Brush and Comb Set – I love heirloom-quality baby gifts. I want to make sure our baby has a few special, personalized items that he/she can save for their own children and this set is perfect for that.

16 // Mud Pie ‘To The Moon’ Wall Art – We live in a rental so we have to get any paint colors or other major decor changes approved by our landlord. Because of that, we’ve decided to keep the walls in the nursery white and use wall art to personalize the space. I’m thinking about doing a gallery wall and this would be a sweet addition to it.

17 // Mary Meyer Giraffe Play Mat – As I mentioned above, I’m planning to collect as many plush play mats as I can to make our hardwood floors more comfortable for our baby. And really, is there anything cuter than a giraffe?

18 // Boppy Newborn Lounger – We used this newborn lounger with my niece who constantly demanded to be held. If she was awake, she wasn’t a huge fan, but she actually slept pretty well in it so I’m hoping my baby will do the same.

19 // aden + anais Classic Swaddle Cloths – Everyone knows that aden + anais makes the best swaddle blankets. I’m planning to stock up on these because they can be used for so many different things: swaddle blanket, nursing cover, burp cloth, etc.

20 // Nordstrom Baby Wrap Top & Footed Pants – Full Disclosure: I bought this outfit very soon after I found out I was pregnant. We’re going to take our baby home from the hospital in it. It’s so soft and simple and I know that it will look great in the hundreds of photos we take on that day.


Bumpdate // Week 21


Making it to the halfway mark last week seemed like such a big deal, but then I remembered just how long twenty weeks is. I’m so anxious to get to the end and meet my baby! Since we still have a long way to go, Sam and I have been focused on getting things accomplished around the house so we’re not scrambling at the end. Over the weekend, we started cleaning out our second bedroom (which used to be my office) so that we can convert it into a nursery. (I’ll write more about that project later this week.) Things like designing the nursery and working on our baby registry help me to pass the time while also preparing for the huge changes this little nugget will bring to our lives in just over four months.

How far along are you? 21 weeks and 3 days.

How big is baby? The size of a pomegranate – 10.5 inches and 12.7 ounces.

Total weight gain? I haven’t weighed myself since my last appointment where I was up 4.8 pounds. I have an appointment later this week though and I’m sure I’ll be up another pound or two. This belly makes itself known a little more each day (see photo above).

How are you feeling? My main issue now is (what I believe to be) acid reflux. I think that’s the reason that I’m still throwing up every morning and the reason that I feel uncomfortable after most meals. I’ve tried to clean up my diet a little bit to get rid of the foods that aggravate it. I also read that sweet apples and two tablespoons of apple cider vinegar in water can help with this problem. I’ve been eating tons of apples, but I’m a little nervous to try the apple cider vinegar. Other than that, I’m feeling pretty great which I attribute to walking two miles most days of the week.

What are you wearing a lot of lately? This Liz Lange for Target maternity tank dress. I’ve worn this dress so many times since I bought it. I even wore it with a lightweight park and Hunter boots to church yesterday. As glad as I am to see Fall and it’s cooler temperatures, I’m very sad that I won’t be able to wear this super comfortable dress anymore. Thankfully, it comes in a long sleeved version. I’ll probably buy it in a few colors because I love it that much. I’m carrying this baby pretty low so dresses are definitely my clothing of choice right now.

How’s your sleep? I literally sleep with 5 pillows every night. Two under my head (to combat the acid reflux issues), one to support my back and a thinner one to support my belly and one between my legs. Last night as we were getting ready for bed, and I was getting into my ideal sleep position, my husband kept saying “I don’t have anywhere to put my arm!” I guess the baby and I have officially invaded his side of the bed. Sorry Sam!

Food cravings and/or aversions? For the first time, I don’t think I noticed any. Aside from still avoiding fish, I think my diet is pretty much back to normal. I’ve even resumed my daily Starbucks habit. I’d also like to note that tonight I am cooking my first dinner in about 15 weeks. In the interest of full disclosure, my crock pot is doing most of the actual cooking, but that’s mostly because I wanted to make enough food to last a few days in case this burst of energy and motivation is just a fluke.

Best moment this week? Sam was able to feel the baby move for the second time this week. His reaction was so cute and funny. After he felt the first kick, he even said, “Did you do that?!” It’s so great for him to be able to feel a tiny bit of what’s happening inside my belly.

What are you looking forward to? My second Centering class this week. I can’t remember if I’ve talked about Centering on the blog yet, but it’s a form of group prenatal care where 10-12 pregnant women meet with one midwife and a nurse in the same intervals as you would have your individual prenatal visits. We do all of the usual stuff (weight, blood pressure, fetal monitoring) and then we discuss pregnancy topics like nutrition, exercise, labor and delivery, breastfeeding, etc. I really enjoyed the first class and I’m looking forward to going again. I’m planning to do a more detailed post about prenatal care with midwives and centering in the future, for anyone who is interested.


Bumpdate // Week 20


We made it to the halfway point! Part of me can’t even believe it. Although most of the days of my pregnancy have crawled by, it seems like the weeks have flown away from me. My sister-in-law is 8 months pregnant and every time I look at her belly, filled to capacity with my newest niece, and I just can’t imagine myself being that close to delivery. I’m still getting used to my baby’s tiny movements!

Well if you follow me on Instagram, you know that Baby Everett was being secretive at our 20 week ultrasound. We saw tons of tiny body parts, but neither of the ones we were so excited to see. Sam and I were both pretty bummed about that, but after we left and I started looking at the other ultrasound pictures, I didn’t really care anymore. One thing I do know for sure; we’ve got an adorable kid in there. I would love to be able to call him/her by name (since we already have names picked for each gender), but I can wait a little longer. We have another ultrasound scheduled in four weeks, and hopefully by then Baby E won’t be breech anymore and it’ll be a bit easier to see his/her entire spine and tiny private parts.

How far along are you? 20 weeks and 3 days.

How big is baby? The size of a banana. We found out at our ultrasound that our baby currently weighs 12 ounces. That seems big to me now, so I can’t even imagine how I’ll feel when I’m carrying a 6 or 7 (or more!) pound baby around all day.

Total weight gain? 4.8 pounds – it looks like I’m starting to gain weight at the normal rate for a woman in her second trimester.

How are you feeling? I would very much like to stop throwing up every morning. My days are so much better than they were in the beginning, but they still start off on such a bad note. I try not to complain about it, but it really is awful. Not much has changed since last week, except I’ve been getting more headaches lately. They’re usually in the evening so I try to just sleep them off, but I wish I knew what was causing them.

Have you noticed any stretch marks yet? Just a few light, short marks on the left side of my belly. My belly gets bigger everyday though so I’m trying to be diligent when it comes to applying belly oil and cream everyday.

How’s your sleep? Overall, sleep is good. My main problems are 1) waking up to pee twice every night and 2) feeling the real weight of my belly when I lay down. I also find that I can’t be touching my stomach in any way or compressing it at all when I’m sleeping. It’s not painful, just really uncomfortable. Did this happen to anyone else?

Food cravings? I’m not quite sure if this is pregnancy or just September related, but I’ve been eating pumpkin everything: cake, pie, lattes, french toast. I can’t get enough.

Food aversions? Still fish.

Best moment this week? Seeing so many of the baby’s features on the ultrasound. In one photo, the baby’s mouth is 100% shaped like mine. I showed it to my family and it was instantly recognized by everyone as the “family mouth.” I didn’t realize how much our baby would look like a “real” baby at 20 weeks.

What are you looking forward to? Our next ultrasound appointment. I’m dying to call this little nugget by his/her name. I’m also ready to design the nursery.


Bumpdate // Week 19


We’re back from another fun weekend in Northern VA with my family and this is the only “bump” picture I got all weekend. I asked Sam to take the photo and purposely turned to the side (so he would know that I wanted to get the bump in the photo), but he failed to inform me that because it was dark I would end up looking like a big blob! Oh well, we tried! Let’s see what’s happening with Baby E this week…

How far along are you? 19 weeks and 3 days.

How big is baby? The size of a mango. 6 inches and 8.5 ounces — that’s more than half of a pound! And I completely believe the 6 inches part because baby’s movements have definitely spread out. Yesterday during church, I felt soft kicks/punches on one side of my lower belly and pressure on the other side at the exact same time. So crazy!

Total weight gain? I haven’t had a prenatal appointment since my last weigh in, so officially I’m still holding at 1.4 pounds. My belly has grown a TON since then though so I’m sure I’ve picked up at least another pound.

How are you feeling? Still throwing up every morning which I feel is just cruel, but I’m handling it. After that happens, I feel a little nauseous for about an hour and then I feel (relatively) great for the remainder of the day. I get hungry every 1.5-2 hours, but my indigestion isn’t so bad anymore which is fantastic. My bladder is still useless and I’ve had to google a few aches and pains this week to make sure they were normal (for some dumb reason, I was surprised to feel pain in my pelvis/groin), but otherwise I think I’m finally turning a corner. Maybe by the halfway mark next week, I’ll finally enter that magical second trimester phase everyone keeps telling me about.

What are you wearing a lot of lately? Lots of dresses and two super comfy jumpsuits my mom gave me. I’ve also discovered that I prefer fitted dresses over flowy ones. My bump is definitely more prominent now, but it’s not huge nor has it taken over my entire body yet. So wearing a fitted dress allows the bump to take center stage and makes the rest of my body look smaller (I hope).

Food cravings? Dairy! I’ve been eating a lot of string cheese and I send Sam to Wendy’s for a Frosty every few days. I also finally like coffee again! So I’ve been treating myself to a tall pumpkin spice latte here and there.

Food aversions? Still fish. I should also probably avoid spicy foods because of the indigestion it brings, but sometimes I just have to have a little salsa.

Best moment this week? I think I said this last week too, but feeling the baby’s movements is so exciting. They get stronger every day and I love it!

What are you looking forward to? Our 20 week ultrasound this Friday! Not only am I excited to find out whether we’re having a boy or a girl, but I’m also ready to make sure that all of our little nugget’s body parts are growing perfectly in there.


Bumpdate // Week 18


I hope you all enjoyed the long weekend! I surely did. Sam and I went to Northern Virginia to visit my family which always guarantees a fantastic weekend. We tested out our golf skills at Top Golf, we had a family sleepover, we celebrated my cousin’s birthday and my aunt and uncle’s 30 year (!) anniversary, my mom and I started my registry at Buy Buy Baby, we had a Labor Day crab feast/pool party, and, best of all, we spent tons of time with our sweet little niece, Alana. We got home last night and it took all I had to roll myself out of the car and up the two flights of stairs to our bedroom, but it was well worth it. It was the perfect way to say goodbye to Summer (because I am more than ready for Fall weather).

How far along are you? 18 weeks and four days.

How big is baby? The size of a sweet potato. Baby is 5.6 inches and 6.7 ounces. And I can definitely see a difference in my belly!

Total weight gain? 1.4 pounds according to my prenatal appointment last Thursday. I have now been advised to try to keep my weight gain to 15 pounds (insert panicked face here), so I’m glad my body hasn’t started packing on the weight yet.

How are you feeling? Although I’m still throwing up every morning and (rather embarrassingly) hiccuping throughout the day thanks to my constant indigestion, my main complaints this week are the aches and pains that come with getting bigger. My lower back is still bothering me, especially after sitting down for too long. I’ve also been experiencing lots of stretching/pulling/tugging in my belly, pelvis and hips. They aren’t unbearable, but they’re definitely uncomfortable. Lastly, and I’m sure this is directly related to all of the fun I had this weekend, but my legs have been incredibly sore. My brother leads a campus ministry at George Mason University and we all went to support him on Sunday night. Of course, their praise and worship was a complete jam session so I danced a bit more than I usually do and the next day I felt like I had done a crazy thigh workout. I definitely need to start working out again so the tiniest bit of movement won’t be a complete shock to my system!

What are you wearing a lot of lately? I’ve been living in roomy tops and maternity jean shorts since it’s been so hot. I can’t stand to have anything pulled up over my belly so I have to roll the panel down on all of my maternity leggings and shorts. I wonder if that will change when my belly gets bigger? Maybe I’ll want that extra support then? I found a pair of maternity leggings by LAmade that sit comfortably underneath my belly so I try to wear those as much as I can. I can’t wait until the weather cools down, and my bump gets a little bigger, so I can add to my maternity clothing collection. There are so many great brands I want to test out.

Have you noticed any stretch marks yet? There are a few tiny lines on the bottom of my stomach that I believe are the beginnings of stretch marks. I’m already prone to stretch marks so I’ve been expecting them. I’m going to keep up with my belly cream and coconut oil though so that my skin stays as moisturized as possible. I’m thinking that might at least minimize their appearance. If not, I won’t be too upset. My body is working hard to create and sustain a human life. I think it would be unrealistic for me to expect it to look exactly the same when that process is over.

How’s your sleep? Each week, sleeping becomes more uncomfortable. I’m convinced that my belly weighs more when I’m laying down. I’ve tried adding more pillows, but I think the bottom line is that pregnant bodies just can’t stay in the same position for too long without aching like crazy. So maybe those 4am bathroom breaks aren’t such a bad thing?

Food cravings? My grandma’s spaghetti. Thankfully, she’s the world’s best grandmother and made Sam and I a huge pot of it to bring home with us. Sidenote: Why is it that I crave all of the foods that aggravate my heartburn? I can’t get enough tomato sauce and pico de gallo. Thank God for Zantac!

Food aversions? Still fish, specifically salmon. I ordered a cooked salmon sushi roll at dinner on Friday night (one of my old favorites!) and my stomach threatened to revolt after a few bites. I was able to eat crabs yesterday though. Weird.

Best moment this week? We’ve been trying to prepare my 16 month old niece for the arrival of two new babies in our family – her baby sister in October and our baby in February and it isn’t going so well. Every time we point to our bellies and say “Is there a baby in there?” or “Do you have a baby sister coming?” she puts on a serious face and vigorously shakes her head “no.” It’s the funniest thing.

What are you looking forward to? I’m really looking forward to getting to 20 weeks. Not only will I be halfway there, but we’ll also find out if we’re having a boy or girl that week. I’m counting down the days!

Any milestones this week? Last week, I officially felt the baby move for the first time. I had just eaten Mexican food for lunch and after I finished, the baby went crazy for about 5 minutes. It felt like a goldfish was swimming around my belly. Ever since then, I’ve been feeling constant flutters and soft jabs. So happy to finally be into this phase of pregnancy. It’s a constant reminder that there really is a baby in there!