Monday, January 28, 2013

18 Weeks- Twin Surrogate Pregnancy

This picture was taken today, at 18 1/2 weeks.  I feel like growth is exponential from here.  I can literally feel my stomach stretching and growing within a day, and most certainly from day to day this past week.  I was sitting on the arm of my chair today and I felt the top of my uterus several centimeters above my naval.  Just to give you an idea of how "ahead of schedule" I am, at 20 weeks with a single pregnancy, the uterus measures at the naval.  I would say I am several weeks ahead in growth.  The good news is that these babes are growing healthy and strong, and I can feel their movements more and more every day!

I have been about a week with no dairy, refined flour, or sugar in my diet, and I am reaping the benefits.  I noticed immediately that I no longer need mints to get rid of that "taste" in my mouth that causes nausea after eating, and my energy levels are more stable (providing a good night's sleep.)  I went to Trader Joe's and stocked up on a bunch of healthy foods, and I look forward to each meal.  Dinner is the hardest time for me not to drink milk, but a glass of almond milk satisfies the craving.  I've also been using the Blendtec a lot in the morning to make "whole" juice- orange and spinach- which gives me much more clean energy than my tea ever did.

We received a gift from the babies' father the other day and that was very touching.  Although distant, I know he is happy in his heart and that makes me happy. 

It's hard to put into words the difference in a twin pregnancy, but it's just... different.  I have a deep relationship with food this time around and feel more in tune with my body's need for nourishment.  That's it... there's a lot more nourishing going on.

For the first time last night I had thoughts of labor and birth.  I know it's early on in the game, but as soon as I am over the nausea and fatigue of the first trimester, my mind turns towards the task ahead of birth.  It's something I go through almost every pregnancy, the process of anticipating birth on a nightly basis.  It's not a fear necessarily, rather a preparation.  Birth is not something you want to get blindsided by.  On that note, I have been listening to my Hypnobabies, "Birthing my Twins Naturally," on a regular basis.

Grow, babies, grow!!

Thursday, January 24, 2013

New Diet

I woke up this morning feeling like I needed to make some changes in my diet.  I have been experiencing some anxiety and tension in this pregnancy, as well as fluctuating energy levels and inconsistent moods.  Although I am well past my morning sickness, often times the foods that I eat will leave me feeling "sick" and are a subsequent drain on my energy.  Soooo... I posted the question to a Facebook page and decided to follow the advice of some of the women there.  The things that really resonated with me were to eliminate dairy and refined sugar/flour from my diet.  I am a big herbal tea drinker, and I like half and half or milk in my tea.  However, this usually leaves me with a bad feeling in my stomach.  Also, when I indulge on refined foods such as white bread, pasta, or heavy dairy such as cheese sauces, cream-based sauces, etc. it leaves me feeling depleted. 

Being that I am into my second trimester with twins, it is tricky to modify my diet without decreasing calorie intake, like I normally would.  However, with the produce I stock up on from the farmer's market along with my new Blendtec, I figured it wouldn't be too hard to come up with some healthy, sustaining recipes that would fit into my new diet.  Today's menu went as follows:

Breakfast: herbal tea with lemon and agave
                 orange and spinach "whole juice" in the Blendtec

Lunch: Butternut squash and spinach soup with a sauteed vegetable and vegetable broth base, in the                Blendtec (I had 2 big bowls.)

Snack: peanuts, almonds, and orange slices, Mother's tea

Dinner: chicken pot pie with butternut squash and kale in a whole-wheat crust (I had 3 pieces.)

My energy was extremely depleted today, partially due to a poor night's sleep last night.  My body knew that something was going on and seemed to be reacting to the "detox."  However, my goal was to feel better at the end of the day, which I accomplished.  I am going to stick to this diet for a solid two weeks, note the difference, and most likely stick to it as well as adding some further modifications.  My primary objective is to get the recommended 80-100g. of protein daily throughout pregnancy, which I will probably do with the addition of nuts, legumes, and grains.  I have some homework to do in the way of researching new recipes and cooking techniques.  I feel better already at the end of day 1 and am excited to be on a new nutrition adventure.

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Temple Trip

On Monday I was able to go down to the temple alone for our Stake Temple Day.  It was so wonderful being surrounded by my new ward family in the endowment session.  The temple was beautiful, as always, and I could've stayed down there all day if it weren't for the kids being home alone.  I do love the temple and have missed it tremendously.

Pregnancy Update

Here are a couple shots from the beginning of my 2nd trimester, which I am now in.  Yea!  My energy is returning with gusto, and my nausea is completely gone.  I am measuring big for my gestational age, which is to be expected with twins.  At my 16 week appointment I was measuring 21 cm., 5 weeks ahead of schedule.  There are two healthy boys in there!

Jacob Turns 9

Jacob wanted a house party for his 9th birthday.  We invited a couple of his friends from school, as well as some friends from the ward.  His CP friends really enjoyed playing in the snow.  We did donuts on a string, a candy walk, pizza, and chocolate bakery cake.  They all enjoyed shooting his new Nerf guns afterwards.  Happy Birthday Jacob. :)

Sunday, January 20, 2013

My Babies

1 & 2... (almost 2 & 3!) I can't believe it.

Kaitlyn's 5th Birthday

The night before Kaitlyn turned 5, I decided to make her a custom banner with pictures of the previous year.  I think I am going to make this a tradition with all of my kids.  She asked for a surprise when she woke up, and I hope this fulfilled her desire!
We splurged on a bakery cake, and I think that with so many birthdays clustered together after the holidays that is going to become routine as well. :)  She really loved her princess cake.
Ashlee did the birthday girl's hair for her party.
We took the kids bowling at Knotty Pine Lanes, and I really liked it.  The place was very clean, family friendly, and we had the help of a personal party coordinator that made things so much easier.
They had a fun arcade with rides, games, air hockey, Just Dance, and other fun stuff.
Anthony loved this car.
Everyone we invited was able to make it.
The final scores: Jacob first, Noah second, and the birthday girl third (on our lane.)
They had a full deli there, so all the kids were able to choose an item from the menu.  Afterwards we cut and served cake, opened presents, and everyone went home!  I didn't even have to stay for clean-up.  Happy Birthday Kaitlyn!!

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

14 Weeks

Friday marked 14 weeks with the twins.  This second trimester brings returned energy and a sense of normalcy.  I am able to keep up with daily chores with relatively consistent energy throughout the day.  I am not experiencing any nausea that a mint or brushing my teeth can't cure.  I do feel the twins move sporadically, but not consistently.  It seems like I'll feel one for a couple days, then the other.  I can't wait to feel stronger movements from them.  Like always, this pregnancy is going fast!  I know it's really going to take off now that I am feeling well and growing.