I’m 25 weeks along today and I’m feeling pretty good! Baby is growing and I notice some days he’s really active and others he’s napping a little more. Baby kicks are my favorite thing about pregnancy, so I’ve been enjoying the bigger movements too!
It feels good to be a little over halfway through the pregnancy, but I will admit a summer pregnancy in Houston is…hot!
Thanks again for all of your questions! Here we go…
How long did it take for #2? It’s taking a bit longer than we thought for us. I
know it didn’t involve that much planning the first time.
question! We got very lucky and I became pregnant with Harper our first cycle
trying. The second time around, I was having some strange symptoms (intense pain during ovulation) and I
went to see my OB to address this. I talked a little more about that in this post. It took us four cycles to conceive baby #2. When you are planning a
pregnancy, it can feel frustrating for it not to happen
right away, even though it’s completely normal for it to take several months to
a year, depending on your age and how long you have been actively trying. If
you have any concerns, you can contact your OB to see if you should come in for
a visit. Best of luck!
Hi Denise— congratulations on the birth of your baby! The newborn period can be a very tough time when your baby has colic or is very fussy (click here for a good resource on this topic). Harper did go through about a 2.5-week period when she was about 6 weeks old where she cried a lot during feedings and in the evening in general. She did not have colic though and we got lucky that she was a relatively easy newborn. For this reason, I don’t have a lot of tips on what might help, but anytime she was fussy (and she was already fed, changed, etc.) I found that the pacifier was very soothing for her as well as just holding her and walking up and down the length of our living area. If you have concerns about colic, I recommend talking to your pediatrician and figuring out if there is an underlying issue such as reflux. A good friend of mine’s baby had some reflux and it wasn’t until she got on medication for it that the colic subsided. Sorry I couldn’t be of more help to you, I hope the website I linked is a good resource for you!
How are you going to adjust your home for two kids vs one? Are you looking to
move into a larger home?
Do you have another room for a nursery or are the kids going to share?
mrsmerg: Will Harper get a “big girl” room? Or will you keep her room as is? We couldn’t decide if it was better to keep our oldest where she was comfortable, or move her into another room, giving the baby the nursery.
moving into a larger home, yes, that is something we’ve definitely considered,
especially as we grow our family. As for the baby, he will sleep in our room for the first few months, just like Harper did. This really worked well for us in terms of feedings/night wakings and I loved having the baby close by for extra reassurance. Harper will continue to sleep in the crib in her nursery.
Over the last five years of blogging, I have
in the past shared a little too much information about where we live and did
not take the proper precautions to ensure that our address was not searchable
online. At that time, I did not anticipate that my blog would grow so much and
that the availability of our home address could become a concern. So for that reason, I won’t be sharing any future plans.
what pregnancy symptoms have been different for you this time around? I’m
curious how my next pregnancy will compare with my first!
what differences, if any, have you noticed from boy vs girl pregnancy?
but the nausea was mainly from afternoon through evening. With this baby, I was
nauseous from about weeks 8-12, but the nausea was all day and night and it was
extreme. I had to take anti nausea medication for 2.5 weeks to help get me through the day. I
also had fantastic hair and skin with Harper and this time around my skin was a
little bit all over the place and my hair texture has changed a bit. My skin
looks better now that I’m in my second trimester! I also found I had more cravings for
certain foods with Harper— in first trimester I couldn’t start my day without
orange juice and I had more food aversions in early pregnancy with her. This time around I didn’t really have any food aversions or super intense cravings. With Harper, I had a lot of sensitivity in my boobs
right at the beginning of pregnancy and this time around it didn’t happen until
later on in my pregnancy but they are sensitive pretty much all the time now.
What were Harper’s favorite baby toys?
Thanks for your question! I did some posts on this
topic when I first had Harper—you can check those out here, here, here, here, here and here.
What is your diet/what supplements do you take? You are in such great shape!
was not exercising going into this pregnancy, but I’m hoping that will motivate me to shape-up after this baby is born. In terms of
diet, I eat the same foods I always
do. I have always eaten every 2-3 hours as that is what works best for my body and that’s how often I’m hungry.
I eat three meals a day with plenty of snacks in between and I also drink lots of
water. Some of my favorite snacks are fruit, granola, yogurt, nuts, crackers with peanut butter, popcorn and Larabars. For supplements, I take a prenatal vitamin called NeevoDHA which is formulated
especially for women with MTHFR mutations. An MTHFR mutation
means that your body does not absorb folic acid as efficiently as it should, so
this particular vitamin contains a more bioavailable form of folic acid called l-methylfolate. Other than that, I do not take any other supplements.
What do you know now that you wish you had known the first time?
I wish I wouldn’t have had so much guilt about going back to work. I really
riddled myself with guilt for at least the first 6 months, and probably much
longer. I wish I would have known how much I would love Harper’s daycare and
the experience she has there and I wish I would have realized that I would find
a really comfortable balance with being a working mom. I remember beating
myself up a lot about whether or not I had made the right decision, but as time
went on, I realized that my choice to go back to work was the best fit for our
family and for me. I think I spent so much time worrying about the hours in the
day I wasn’t with Harper— but seeing how much she’s thriving and loves her
school has really allowed me to feel a sense of balance I never thought I
would. I feel like I have the best of both worlds— my child spends time
playing, learning and having fun during the day with her teachers and friends
and I get to enjoy both my family life and a career I love. The confidence I
have in my choices this second time around has been wonderful, so looking back- I wish I would have known then how happy I would be now so I wouldn’t have worried so much!
Are you going to do anything differently in terms of breastfeeding? (You are a
hero btw in my books for EPing for a year – that is true love and selflessness).
going to EP again?
question! I have thought a lot about this since I became pregnant. After one
year of exclusively pumping for Harper, I noticed some changes in my breasts
that I feel may make for a more favorable breastfeeding experience this time
around and may make it easier for the new baby to latch. Of course, there are never any guarantees that breastfeeding will work out, but I will work with lactation consultants from the very start, just
like I did with Harper. Ultimately, my goal would be to breastfeed while I am
with the baby and pump while I am at work and perhaps before going to sleep to
build a freezer stash. If for some reason breastfeeding doesn’t work out this
time around, I plan to exclusively pump again for a year. I feel that the
benefits for both the baby nutritionally and for me (in terms of recovery/shrinking
the uterus, the amazing endorphins that come from breastfeeding, etc.) are very
much worth it and though it was a lot of work, it’s something I’m very glad I did.
will you manage breastfeeding/pumping with a toddler? And sleep training? How
did you get Harper to sleep so well?
Harper will continue to go to daycare while I’m on maternity leave, so I’m not
too concerned with finding the time to breastfeed or pump. It was important to us
to keep Harper’s schedule consistent and have some normalcy in her routine with a new baby arriving.
In terms of sleeping/sleep training, we were
fortunate that Harper was a good sleeper from the start (i.e.: we got lucky). She did experience a sleep regression at about 3.5
months of age. I would say it lasted between 2.5-3 weeks. We moved her to her
crib during this time period, which did help a little and we would go into the
nursery and rock and/or feed her if she woke up crying. We didn’t do “cry it
out” or other sleep training methods, but as I mentioned, we didn’t have to and
it’s truly the luck of the draw (and I’m
totally thinking baby #2 will throw us for a loop!) I think you have to trust your instincts and
do what feels right for your baby. Very young babies do not have the ability to
“manipulate,” so I believe their needs should always be met and I agree with
most experts that sleep training should not be a consideration until babies are
a little older. It’s always a good idea to consult your pediatrician if you have any concerns about your baby’s sleep.
Have you decided on a name/what might be an influence when you do pick a name?
before I even became pregnant! One night we were chatting and Kevin mentioned a
name he liked if we had a boy one day. I took a moment to think about it and I
liked it too! When I became pregnant, we said if we have a boy, we will likely
go with this name and when it was confirmed, we started to call the baby by
this name. We will share it when he’s born, just like we did with Harper. She
has already learned to say his name as well!
How did you manage the first trimester exhaustion/pregnancy symptoms with a
toddler to take care of? I had morning sickness (all day) with my first and I
am worried how difficult it’ll be if I have the same symptoms and still be a
mom to my 2 yr old. I used to come home from work and sleep/eat dinner/sleep
all evening the first time I was pregnant.
first pregnancy, I would come home from work and fall asleep almost
immediately. This time around, for the first few weeks of my pregnancy, I didn’t
have that same level of exhaustion. I did begin to feel very tired at about 8
weeks in and there were times I would take a quick cat nap on the couch after
work. I reminded myself that this tiredness was temporary and didn’t give
myself too hard of a time about not playing with Harper during those naps. My husband was also a great help in entertaining Harper when I was
feeling too sick or too tired to play when we got home. I think during a second pregnancy you are also in a different place mentally. The first time around
you know you have the luxury of being able to get a ton of sleep but when you
have a toddler, you know there’s less time to rest and you just push through
it. Once I hit second trimester, I found myself a little less tired and things
seemed normal again. I also drink one cup of coffee a day, which helps.
what is your face skincare routine this time around? Any drugstore or high end
products that work best? Thanks!
last pregnancy. You can read more about that here. I also share some recent skincare favorites in this post.
How do you handle back pain?! High or low it hurts lugging that baby around!
far. The only time I feel a little discomfort is when I sit on the couch a
little too long since I’m usually slouching. I did have some hip/thigh pain in
my last pregnancy and I anticipate that may happen again this time as I get
further along in the pregnancy. Sleeping with a snoogle really helped because
it provided some support between my knees. Some of my friends did some physical therapy during pregnancy and it really seemed to help! Perhaps you could look into this as an option if you’re experiencing consistent pain. Check with your care provider as to what resources are available to you/covered by your insurance policy.
Do you plan to make any major life changes now that you’ll have two babies?
major life changes with baby #2 arriving. We will both continue to work full
time and our children will attend the same daycare. We like the way things are
will you take for maternity leave this time?
I will take the same amount of leave as I did with Harper. My job allows me to take 12 weeks of FMLA leave so I will be returning to work after that.
like to know about your experience with maternity leave and how to make the
transition in and out of work easier?
Thanks for your question! In terms of starting my leave, I worked right up until I went into labor and plan to do the same this time. I wanted to work all the way to the end both to ensure that many of the larger projects I was working on were wrapped before I left and also so that I could maximize my leave. I also met with my colleagues and provided a list of projects and dates while I would be out so that we could make sure those key things would be handled.
As far as the transition of going back to work, the absolute best advice I can
give is that you and your partner need to have a solid morning routine that allows
you both to get ready for the day and take care of feeding your child(ren) and
getting them dressed and ready to go. It’s also important to prepare things
like bottles for daycare the night before so that you don’t have additional
things to do the next morning. I believe in having a very equal divide of work
in the household, so you and your partner should set clear expectations for who
does what, allowing flexibility if schedules change or unexpected things come up. Good luck!
you read any of the “you’re going to be a big sister” books yet? My
sis in law is expecting and I was thinking of buying some for my niece.
Yes! We have three books about being a big sister that we read to Harper. I
think they’re great to introduce the concept of being a big sister and to show
examples of what life will be like when a new baby comes. I don’t know that she
fully understands it, but she talks about “baby brother” and says things like “I
want to feed him” and “I want to hold him.” Books about being a big sister
would make for a great gift. Something else that has helped is the Daniel Tiger
episodes with Daniel’s baby sister Margaret. She even sings one of the songs
from an episode about his mom splitting time between Daniel and Margaret.
going to do any you tube videos answering baby questions or baby related
I don’t have any plans right now to create additional video content, but I
appreciate your suggestion!
doing this for us! I’m curious to know how you are going to pack your hospital
bag this time! I remember bringing one big suitcase and another big bag for my
first child…it was such a mistake.
I didn’t pack a ton when we had Harper, to be honest. For myself, I will
bring my VS super soft PJ tops- they button up and make nursing so easy. I will
also bring some nursing bras and some super soft leggings and loose PJ pants to wear postpartum. I
also bring my makeup/face wash, camera, cell phone, chargers, iPad and
toothbrush. The hospital where I’m delivering provides so much of what you need—
including pads, pumping parts and a hospital grade pump, etc, so I will not
bring any of those items with me. For the baby, I bring a couple of outfits (a
sleeper and a onesie), some baby mittens, a hat, one or two swaddle blankets
and some pacifiers (the hospital also provides these but if you want a
different brand other than the soothies you can bring your own). We live close enough to the hospital to where we could go home and get something if we really needed it, but less is more, in my opinion, depending on what your hospital provides in terms of after-care items.
Fortunately, there are a lot of things we will re-use for this baby that we
already have! I wanted gender-neutral items when we had Harper (things like bouncers,
play centers, swings, etc…) so we don’t have to buy any of those. We will also
re-use our infant car seat, stroller, etc.
right now because I truly feel like I have everything we need for this baby,
other than new clothes which I’ve already started to purchase. I bet there will
be little things here and there I’ll need to get like breast milk storage bags,
some new swaddle blankets, etc, but in general, there is not much that I need
Nacmatt: What would your ideal labor and delivery look like for baby #2?
I don’t have a birth plan for this baby (I didn’t with Harper either). My plan is always whatever will ensure the best outcome for the baby’s health and my own, and I know how quickly things can change during childbirth, so I trust my OB to help guide any decisions related to the birth. Ideally, I would like to have another vaginal delivery. I also had a great experience with my epidural and would get one again if my labor is as painful as it was with Harper. The one change I am making this time is that we will ask for delayed cord clamping for the baby. While previous studies only showed benefits for premature babies, newer ones are also indicating there may be some benefits for term babies as well. I’m hoping this baby won’t have any NICU time and we can try to nurse right away, but truthfully, I’m happy with any experience that ultimately leads to a healthy outcome for the baby and for me.