Disclosure: All reviews are my true and honest opinions. Posts may contain affiliate links where I earn a small commission from your purchase, but I will always let you know which links those are. :)

Monday, October 30, 2017

Baby Boy Name Reveal + My Favorite Name Choices for Baby #2

Baby brother's name is Eren Michael.

Eren was a name my husband and I were actually able to agree on. A common name with unique spelling.
We like to use family names for middle names, so we pretty much listed out all the male family member names we could use and Justin liked Michael best. It is after my great grandpa on my mother's side. He came to America from Croatia, so we don't actually have record of his written name. He just have census records, which are super unreliable, and the fact that he was called Mike. So even if it wasn't Michael exactly, he's still named in honor of him.

Our close second name option that was very close in the running was Charlie Ray, but I felt like that was not this baby's name. I would like to use it on a future baby boy, but right now I just didn't think it was right.

Here are other names I liked too:


Did you and your husband have an easier time agreeing on a name?

Thanks for reading.
Alaina & Baby Brother Eren

Saturday, October 28, 2017

17 Weeks Pregnant with Baby #2

Week ending Oct. 24, 2017.
Due Date: April 3, 2018

Getting better, I think. I stayed up til like 10:30 over the weekend. :)
But Calvin's been teething and has been having rough nights this week, so that sucks.

Physical Symptoms:
Nipples are starting to darken already.

Too much snacking this week!
Can't tell if I'm actually more hungry or just being bad and snacking more often.

Sleep & Dreams:
Super weird dream. We were sitting on the bank of a creek but it was in the location of the street in front of my parents' house. It was me and Justin, his nephews, and Justin's ex brother-in-law and maybe some others, I can't remember if Cal was there. It was also like we were on vacation staying in a cabin and I was going through Calvin's cloth diapers while sitting on the floor, but he got a new diaper that I had never used before, a different brand and everything. I don't know how these two events were connected. Ha. Pregnancy dreams.
Had kind of a creepy dream about being able to feel baby from the outside. You could look at my belly and watch his little spine move very clearly. I even woke up laying on my back with my hand on my belly too. Ha!

Favorite Moments of the Week:
I know it's not pregnancy related, but something very cool happened this week. Calvin finally started to care about story time! We've been reading bedtime stories since he was teeny tiny and he usually just runs around his room and ignores us or tries to talk over us. But all of a sudden this past week he will sit with you and look at the pictures and actually listen! It's amazing! I'm so glad our relentless reading finally paid off.

Random Thoughts:
Back on the whole "what if baby's a girl" thing. Lol. I couldn't help but think it was a girl in the very beginning but now I'm unsure about the Sneak Peek results and I'm wondering if we can even trust the results and shouldn't have announced the sex already.

Alaina & Baby #2

Saturday, October 21, 2017

Random Thoughts : VBAC vs. C-Section Decision

The goal here is simply to express all the thoughts running through my head regarding the possible ways our newest little one is going to be brought into the world.

Calvin was born via c-section after 2-3 hours of pushing

Positives of a planned repeat C-section:
Baby's birthday is pretty much planned.
Knowing I won't have to go through labor ever again.
Being prepared for the c-section instead of failing at a vaginal delivery and having things cascade into the same sucky situation as last time.

Positives of an attempted VBAC:
I tried. I know I gave it my all.

Negatives of a repeat C-section:
Feeling cheated for not getting to try for a vaginal birth again.
Recovery time is long.
Risks of complications are higher.
The fact that I will now have to have c-sections for all future babies.
Possibility of limited family size due to too many c-sections.

Negatives of an attempted VBAC:
Feeling of failure again.
Risk of flashbacks to my traumatic first birth.


Of course a successful VBAC would be my #1 pick. That's what we all want! But I have to be realistic and look at all of the possibilities.

I think I will be able to accept it if I try for a VBAC and fail. At least I gave it a go.

But I have to prepare for the possibility of a planned c-section too. That's the scenario that's going to be harder to accept.
My doctor wants me to try for a VBAC, but she also made it very clear that we will know more the closer we get to my due date and it may end up making more sense to just go ahead with a c-section if baby is looking really big or if other complications arise. And that's the part that I have to learn to accept, if it comes down to that. It will be hard to live with the fact that I didn't get to try again for a vaginal delivery. It will be hard to accept that all of my babies will be born via C-section and I'll have never given birth "the right way."

Thanks for listening.

16 Weeks Pregnant with Baby #2

Week ending Oct. 17, 2017.
Due Date: April 3, 2018

I need to start applying more lotion. I've been kind of slacking on that this time around. I pretty much doused myself in lotion every single day from the moment I found out I was pregnant with Calvin. Not that it helped... I still got one million stretch marks lol. On the last day of this week, I felt baby moving a ton first thing in the morning and realized just how much stronger the movements get each and every week!

Some days I feel like my energy levels are getting back to normal, then I'll have a day when all I want to do is nap and I question whether this is simply part of the exhaustion of parenthood and it's here to stay forever!

Physical Symptoms:
Haven't had morning sickness in a couple weeks.
Spoke with a nurse at the Maternal Fetal Medicine office about my migraines and she pretty much told me there was nothing I could take to help them, even though I told her Tylenol does jack. So that's super. I guess here's hoping they go away magically (like they did with Calvin at like 10 weeks)! I've been working on staying more hydrated, almost doubling my water intake. Yes, I am peeing all the time even more! But so far... it seems to be helping my head.
Little bit of heartburn.
Nose is still stuffy/runny/doing weird stuff.
Hairline zits feel like they're increasing again.
Maybe I'm getting a couple cold sores this week.
After going for walks, my wedding ring is feeling pretty tight.
The cats have been so clingy lately! I loved it when I was pregnant with Calvin, but I am not a fan this time around, I don't know why.
I keep forgetting to mention this, but it's been like a month now, ever since Calvin gave up nursing, I don't know if that's just a coincidence or what... but my nipples have been super sensitive. I remember they were sensitive in the very early weeks with Calvin, but totally not this far along. And I feel like they're way more sensitive than they were when I was pregnant with Calvin.

Having moments where I really don't want what's on the menu for dinner, not feeling hungry but knowing I have to eat or else I'll snack too much before bed, etc.
Egg-less cookie dough. All you have to do is replace your eggs with milk. Makes cookies just as good. In our recipe, I end up adding about 4 tablespoons of milk.

Sleep & Dreams:
A couple more nights of restless sleep, kept waking up a lot, but at least I could go back to sleep quickly.

Favorite Moments of the Week:
Seeing baby brother on ultrasound when I totally wasn't expecting to have one at that appointment. He was moving around like crazy! He's so little, yet so much bigger than the last time we saw him.
Also getting to spend another date night with Justin. We went mini golfing, out to dinner with my sister, then on a ghost tour in old town St. Charles, Mo.

Random Thoughts:
It finally is starting to feel right calling new baby by his name.

Doctor Appointments:
It looks like we're going to be spending a lot of time at the doctor this pregnancy. They are recommending I take progesterone shots every week and have ultrasounds every other week to check cervical length.

Here's a more detailed post about it.

The doctor who delivered Calvin never mentioned anything about having to have these doses in future pregnancies, my current doctor said it was unlikely I would need to, then I go to this specialist and he highly recommends it even though he said it only gave about a 20% reduction in chance of preterm labor.

I know it's all for the best to help reduce the risk of PROM happening again. And visiting the doctor every week is way better than spending 5 weeks in the hospital again, but it still just sucks. I just want a normal pregnancy.

I feel like I just hit a brick wall in this pregnancy. Everything was going great and all seemed well and even though I know this is all just-in-case stuff and it's really not a big deal, it all just seemed super sucky at the time and I cried the whole drive home. I guess it all just boiled down to me feeling like I'm not even supposed to carry babies if shit is always going to go wrong, plus we want more kids, is it really worth it if we have to do this every time, plus I've always heard about insurance problems with this medicine so what kind of battles are we going to have to fight over this?

Sorry to leave on a somewhat negative note, but this week was just kind of sucky.
Alaina & Baby #2

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Pregnancy Update : Repeat PROM & Preterm Labor Concerns

I feel bad for getting so upset over it all. It seemed so daunting at the time, but when I think about it now, it's not such a big deal.

I went to a new doctor last week and received some news I wasn't entirely expecting. My regular OB set up an appointment with the Maternal Fetal Medicine doctors who specialize in higher risk pregnancies. So this was my first meeting with the high risk doctor.

I had borderline high amniotic fluid levels with Calvin. And at 32 weeks I had PROM, premature rupture of membranes. My water was slowly leaking. It is suspected it could have been caused by the high fluid levels. I was in the hospital for 5 weeks. My doctor in the hospital wanted me to get to term, despite the fact that anyone else would have delivered Calvin at 34 weeks, which is the medical standard, I am told. I thank God we had the specific doctor we did! Calvin spent time in the NICU, but he was perfect.

The high risk doctor I just saw is concerned about PROM happening again and the possibility of preterm labor.
He is recommending I take hormone shots every week from 16 wks forward.
He is also having me go in for ultrasounds every other week to monitor my cervical length from now until 28 weeks.

That doesn't sound too bad, right? It's not. There are plenty of women who have way tougher pregnancies. But I cried the whole way home from that appointment. I felt so bad. I felt like, once again, I wasn't fit to carry a baby. I wanted so bad to have a normal pregnancy this time!

And that's all on top of the fact that I want to try for a VBAC so bad. But it seems each additional complication puts that further and further from my reach.

It also brings up the question, is it worth it if we have to do this for each additional pregnancy too? Is it selfish?

My husband and I want four kids. I've always wanted four. We've always talked about four. And yet these complications (or rather possibility of, because nothing is going downhill yet!) make us question that.

And I know that these are all just precautions to prevent the same thing from happening this time around. I know that driving to the doctor all the damn time is better than being confined to a hospital room away from my home and family for weeks! And I know there are plenty of women with way bigger concerns than I have here. I should be so grateful!

And I shouldn't even be worried right now. Nothing bad has happened. We're simply trying to prevent bad things from happening. I shouldn't worry about the what-ifs. Everything is good so far. New baby is growing right on track and, even though it is still early, my fluid levels and cervix are looking good.

But we're extra keeping an eye on things this time. Looking back, we could see the warnings. This time we will know better what's going on if things start to go downhill.

So although it is scary, I know we are doing our best and handing everything else over to God.

Thanks for reading.
Alaina & Tiny Baby #2

Sunday, October 15, 2017

15 Weeks Pregnant with Baby #2

Week ending Oct. 10, 2017.
Due Date: April 3, 2018

Dude, this is going by way too fast!

Officially up 10 pounds. :(
This is the week my bump really popped with Calvin. I feel it's happened this time around too.
Finally feeling some real movements more consistently, not just the little flutters.

This is the week my energy started to return with Calvin. I think it's starting to return a bit this week, but I'm still not right back to normal. I don't just want to pass out as soon as 8 pm rolls around and I can stay awake for TV time with Justin better.

Physical Symptoms:
Slight, slight heartburn might be starting in the evenings.
Migraines are still a thing and I'm about to lose my mind over them. I can't stand them! I'm just so tired of having them all the time and nothing works to fix them! Had a couple really terrible ones this week.

Perhaps I've been slightly more hungry. Went to the grocery store this week and picked up a lot more produce than usual, trying to stay on the healthy track. Justin hates pretty much all vegetables, so it's really just for me and maybe Cal if he's feeling adventurous.
Back at the beginnings of the year I went through a phase where I was trying to reduce our meat intake and up our veggies, so I'm trying that again.

Sleep & Dreams:
One night of restless sleep. It was hot and I couldn't decide if I wanted the covers or not. I just kept waking up so many times throughout the night. I was able to go right back to sleep, but I just kept waking up!

Favorite Moments of the Week:
Date day/night with Justin. Even though we didn't get to do everything we wanted and it actually turned out somewhat uneventful, it was still surprisingly nice to spend with day just with Justin and not having to worry about Calvin. He spent the day with Grandma. Then I slept in until 8:45 am Sunday! Holy crap. I literally don't think I've done that since Justin and I got married. It was actually nice because, unlike every other time I've left my baby, I didn't really miss him or feel guilty, I was able to enjoy the day without all that extra burden in the back of my mind.

Anything I Miss:
Sometimes I look back on my first pregnancy and laugh because it was so easy peasy to be pregnant and not have to worry about a toddler. Ha. Pregnancy is exhausting and having a toddler is also equally exhausting. It really is hard work!

Random Thoughts:
Calvin's running out of big kid clothes. I just cleared out all his 18 mos and under stuff and he now has a very minimalist wardrobe lol. With the change of the season upon us (mother nature still can't decide if it should be 90 or 60 out), I wanted to go through his stuff and see what cool weather clothing he may need. So we bought him a couple pairs of soft jeans. He has a bunch of traditional, stiff jeans, but to me if I was a little dude, I'd rather have stretchy jeans, so that's what we got him.

Alaina & Baby #2

Saturday, October 7, 2017

14 Weeks Pregnant with Baby #2

Week ending Oct. 3, 2017.
Due Date: April 3, 2018

Yay! It's the second trimester! Let all the joys of pregnancy begin! Haha.

Just waiting for this little bump to really pop! It happened at 15 weeks with Calvin.
I've started feeling what I first described with Calvin as a low, light rumbling this week. It feels like your tummy is rumbling but it's super low in your pelvis and it's very, very light. I remember it distinctly from Calvin because it was some of the earliest movements I felt with him. It's only a matter of time before I really start to feel this little guy!

Still not feeling back to normal yet.
Finally got some fall-like weather so we were able to venture to the park this week and hang out outside a lot more.

Physical Symptoms:
I know I was a bitch in the beginning, but I'm pretty sure I've been behaving well lately. :)
Allergies or other nasal issues due to pregnancy? I remember having nasal issues with Calvin too in the beginning but it was also a similar time of year, so it's hard to exactly blame it on pregnancy.
Morning sickness, what are you doing? Got a couple days of it this week. Pretty intense actually.
Cramping this week. Kind of intense and with a backache and achey hips some days. Up until now it really hasn't been a big issue so far.
Round ligament pain seems to be happening a little more frequently. Maybe once every couple days.
Hairline zits seem to be increasing. Got a couple pimples on my face too. Super.

I wanted ramen noodles after dinner one night but didn't feel like making them so I got over it. Justin wouldn't make them for me either. :(
Also really really wanted pizza for dinner Friday night so we ordered that.

Sleep & Dreams:
I've been really awesome at actually remembering my dreams this week!
Had a dream an old childhood friend died and we had to attend her funeral.
Also had a dream about some other childhood friends and their house was falling apart and the son just kept walking around inside as this place was about to collapse.
Dreamt I was driving along the road like I was leaving Justin's parents' house when he still lived at home and it was all flooded and I ended up running off the road onto this embankment where I had to abandon my car and I was going to walk back to Justin's and I had to walk along this cliff which totally doesn't exist in real life.
Had another freaking dream about smoking. I was at a bar with an old friend and I was smoking and offered her a cigarette and she was like, only if it's nicotine-free and we laughed. Like we both knew I was pregnant and smoking... what the heck?

Favorite Moments of the Week:
Watching Calvin play with the laundry basket in the living room. He was having a really good time climbing in and out of it and picking it up and carrying it around and putting it on the coffee table and pushing it on the floor. Like why do we even have kids' toys when you get this big of a kick out of the laundry basket? Ha.
Going to the park and taking lots of pictures with Calvin. It finally felt like fall and it was a beautiful morning.

Anything I Miss:
Not feeling like a super hobo who can't stay up past 8:30.

Random Thoughts:
I feel like the working mom guilt is getting a little better this week. The blog post I wrote seemed to help me be able to sort through my thoughts and work up the courage to speak with my managers about going back down to four days per week. In a couple weeks we'll be able to have that schedule back. I really think that will help me gather my sanity again. Ever since I got pregnant, I've had some serious working mom guilt and sadness, like I want to call in sick all the time, and I've just been dreading going to work and leaving my baby boy, and just not wanting to be there. I hope the schedule change helps. It's been 5 months now of working 5 days per week and I know it's getting to me.

We have known baby's name for awhile now, but finally decided to post it to social media and let our close family know this week. His name will be Eren Michael. And actually, posting his name really makes me worry that he's not actually a boy and we're going to have to go back and make separate announcements once we get the ultrasound haha!

Alaina & Baby #2

Sunday, October 1, 2017

Flat Diaper Comparisons & Reviews : GMD, Geffen, FSTs, Nicki's

I love our AI2 system but I am also a fan of flats. They dry so quick, get the job done, and I do enjoy folding and seeing a cute little stack of ready-to-go flats.

Watch my video review here!

Cloth-eez Birdseye Flats from Green Mountain Diapers
One Size 29x29 
$15.95/6 pk, $2.66/ea
These are kind of your traditional flat diaper. They work and they're basic. Not much else to say lol.
I do really want to try the Cloth-eez muslin ones, they're supposed to be fluffier and they just look nice so when they restock the one-size in late October I may have to pick up a pack. :)

Nicki's Diapers Bamboo Flats 
Large 32x32 
$21.95/6 pk, $3.66/ea
These might be my favorites at the moment. They are so soft and dry soft on the line, which is a huge bonus since I love hanging our diapers to dry. And they hold a lot of pee! There are times I change Cal after 2-3 hours with a pad fold and you can hardly even tell there's pee in there. They are a little bulkier in a pad fold, but not terrible, and totally fine as a traditional wrapped flat diaper. 

Room Essentials Flour Sack Towels from Target 
$3.99/4 pk, $.99/ea
Pad folded, these work great and they're very affordable. I'd say they usually look about 2/3 full after 2.5 hours.

Geffen Baby Hemp Jersey Flat 
These are too small to use as a traditional flat diaper on Calvin. I'm sure it would work great on a smaller baby though. So we exclusively use it in a pad fold and mostly at night time. They are an excellent booster. Hemp is the best for nighttime. 

Geffen Baby Hemp Fleece (Fladdle) Flat 
This little guy will last overnight with our average wetter all by itself, which is crazy awesome! I do find it hard to Snappi at times. I prefe
r to fold it inside out so the fleecey side is not the side getting Snappied. 

 Geffen Baby specific review here!

Thanks for reading!