Thursday, May 29, 2014

29 Week Bump Date! Aches, Pains, A Rockin' Baby, Classes, and What's A Doula?

I have to say, this week has been one of the more challenging weeks of pregnancy. I'll share with you the good and the bad of Week 29! 

Aches and Pains:

I have been experiencing a lot of back pain and pain in my stomach muscles. My doctor said this is because this is my second pregnancy and my muscles are weakened from my first pregnancy. I was not in great physical shape when I became pregnant, so this does not completely surprise me. 

Over the past few days, the pain started to impact my daily activities. I wanted to cry every time I got out of bed, or out of a chair. I had an incredibly hard time getting dressed, walking and standing. I feel like there was a point this week when I crossed the threshold from "regular pregnancy" pain to "this shouldn't be happening yet" pain. 

I decided to go and see a chiropractor yesterday. I think my favorite part about seeing her was that she listened to me, which made me feel good. She didn't blow me off, or tell me to "suck it up", she didn't laugh at me or make me feel like a wimp. She gave me some empathy, which is exactly what I needed. Well, I needed empathy and a back adjustment. She aligned my back in a few places and actually saw me again this morning for follow up adjustments. This is my first time ever seeing a chiropractor and so far it has been a great experience. I am still sore, but not in pain like I was before I saw her. 

Rockin' and Rollin' Baby

I'm starting to feel really big movements from Miss Marlie! I can watch my stomach moving and feel her big twists and turns. I love it! I can feel her becoming more active everyday.  

Class Time

I finally signed my husband and I up for a natural childbirth class! I had been debating whether or not to take an actual class, or to just watch videos online. In the end I decided that I really wanted to experience this with my husband in a way that I don't think we would get from online videos. I like the idea of a small class setting, with other couples and an instructor we can see face to face. 

The class I decided on is a 7 week class that covers the following topics:
  • Mechanics of childbirth, natural labor preparations, first and second stage labor information, breastfeeding, postpartum care, and tips for labor partners
The instructor seems really nice and I am excited to meet her! The class was originally $300. She was able to give me a voucher for $50 off, and she is willing to do a payment plan for us. This made the class much for affordable. I am really exited for what we will learn!

What's a Doula?

Over the past few days I have suddenly had the urge to hire a doula. I never knew what one was or what exactly they did, until I began to research. They are like a support person for both you and your spouse and are with you before, during, and after labor. 

Here is an official definition from DONA International:

"The word "doula" comes from the ancient Greek meaning "a woman who serves" and is now used to refer to a trained and experienced professional who provides continuous physical, emotional and informational support to the mother before, during and just after birth; or who provides emotional and practical support during the postpartum period. Studies have shown that when doulas attend birth, labors are shorter with fewer complications, babies are healthier and they breastfeed more easily."

In my area (St. Louis, MO) the average Doula's services cost about $1,000. However, I have found one provider that has a service price listed of $400, and a few others that have service prices between $500-$600. I have found that most of the doulas in my area offer a package of 2 prenatal visits, unlimited phone calls, support throughout the entire labor and delivery, breastfeeding support, and 2 postpartum visits. This totally sounds worth it to me! 

No one in my family has done a natural birth or exclusively breastfed. I think it would be beneficial to have this person as a resource. If my husband and I can afford it, I would love to hire a doula! 

**I know that was a long post for week 29, thanks for following along on my journey! I would love to hear about anyone's experience with a doula or natural childbirth tips! 

Saturday, May 17, 2014

27 Week Bump Date!

Woo hoo! I just finished my 27th week of pregnancy! Here is what has been going on during the past few weeks...

Pregnancy Symptoms:

  • Baby Movement: Holy kicks and punches! During the past few weeks I can really feel Marlie kicking, punching and dancing. I still love it :) She's kicking my laptop as I write this. 

  • Braxton Hicks Contractions: I never had these with my son, but I started feeling them during this pregnancy about 2 weeks ago. They mostly happen when I am walking around (baseball games, grocery stores, and at work). They feel like a stitch in my side and then my whole belly tightens up. They aren't really painful, just uncomfortable. My doctor told me if I have more than 5 in one hour to put my feet up and drink water. 

  • More Potty Breaks: I can definitely tell that Miss Marlie is squishing my bladder! I wake up about twice per night to go to the bathroom, if I'm lucky, it's just once. The other night at my son's baseball game I had to go to the bathroom about 4 times during his 2 hour game. 

  • Standing For Too Long Hurts! I have noticed lately that I can stand for about 45 minutes before my back and feet really hurt. I finally asked for an accommodation at work. I bought myself a $10 camping stool from Dick's Sporting Goods to take with me on work site assessments. I had to provide a doctor's note saying that I was allowed to sit for 10 minutes out of every hour. I was embarrassed to ask for an accommodation at work. I honestly felt like a "wimp" and felt ashamed that I was asking to sit, when I know that there are pregnant women who stand all day as cashiers, nurses and hundreds of other occupations. But then I counseled myself and I told myself that I don't need to compare myself to other women and just because others handle discomfort differently, doesn't make my discomfort not valid. 

Baby Planning

  • We are going to register for our baby shower today! We have been wanting to do this for weeks, but haven't had the time or energy. I am determined to get this started today!

  • I have been researching natural child birth and all of the benefits. I am trying to decide if my husband and I should pay to take a class, or if there is enough free information online to prepare us. I would love to hear suggestions! We are also looking for information on infant care. I am sure a lot has changed since 13 years ago when my son was born. I want to make sure I am up to date on the latest! 


  • I am officially done with school! I graduated with my Master's Degree 2 weeks ago! 

  • I am in full blown nesting mode. Every time I walk into a room, I think about a new paint color and decor. I wake up in the middle of the night and can't stop thinking about how to arrange the nursery furniture. This is happening! 

Thanks for following along on my pregnancy journey! I would love to hear any suggestions or advice! :)

Thursday, April 17, 2014

One Of The Best Things Anyone Has Ever Said To Me

Sometimes, things come out of our children's mouths that astound us and stop us in our tracks. Often these things are inappropriate, funny or just out of this world. And sometimes, what your child says to you can be one of the best things anyone has ever said to you. I had one of these moments recently.

"Mom, how did you get to be so accomplished?" My 13 year old asks me.

"What do you mean?" I responded, a little surprised by his question. I don't often think of myself as "accomplished".

"I mean that you are 28 years old, married, have a kid, are pregnant, have a job and are getting your master's degree. You have already done so much."

I sat quietly, a little speechless.

"I don't know if I will have done everything you have when I am your age. How did you do it?"

I smiled and explained to him that I made a decision about what was important to me, and I set goals. I told him that he can accomplish anything he wants to by any age if he sets his mind to it. I have no doubt my son will be extremely successful. He is smart and charismatic. He is wise beyond his years in so many ways.

I was taken back by the thought that I am "accomplished". I spend so much of my time focused on the things that I don't have, what I haven't done and what I might not be able to do in the future. This conversation made me realize that I really need to take some time to reflect on my accomplishments, and give myself a little more credit now and then.

I try to stay humble, but maybe there is a fine line between being humble and not recognizing value in yourself on a regular basis. 

More than anything, it means the world to me that my son views me as accomplished. For me, it means that it has all been worth it. Every class, every test, every 20 page paper. Every date, every bad relationship, every time my heart was broken. Every time I struggled and I wondered if it would make a difference to anyone. It did. And that is why when my son told me I was accomplished, it was one of the best things anyone has ever said to me.

Sunday, April 13, 2014

22 Week Bump Date: The Good, The Bad and The Really Bad

Last week was week 22 of Pregnancy: Marlene! I still love being pregnant...although this week did not include all of the sunshine and rainbows of last week. I may have "jinxed" myself by writing about how much I loved pregnancy last week. Go figure! Thanks for following, I love to share my pregnancy stories with you all, including the good, the bad and the really bad.

The Good...

Marlie has been rocking and rolling this week! She has been having little dance parties every night. This week I felt her move in more than one place at a time. My best guess is that she's shaking arms and legs at the same time. Let's just say this chick can really rock a womb (hahaha, get it?)!

Both Nathan and Jasen got to feel her move this week. Nathan has felt her once before, but this was the first time my son has felt her. It is such a great experience to share as a family! She was moving towards Nathan's hand on my belly, it was amazing!

The Bad...

Hello random second trimester nausea. I have not thrown up this entire pregnancy. During my first trimester, I felt sick to my stomach all of the time. It was a special kind of nausea that never goes away. This past week I started feeling intense feelings that I was going to throw up. It was so bad one morning that I ran to the bathroom three times at work. I still haven't thrown up though!

The Really Bad...

Warning: I am about to give you all way too much information. But it really wouldn't be fair if I only shared the good things about my pregnancy, right? I promise, I will spare you all the gross details. On Friday, my doctor had to do minor surgery... on my ass. Yep, that's right, it's the ugly side of pregnancy. For a few days I was stuck in bed, laying on my side.

My sweet husband held my hand through the entire ordeal and waited on me hand and foot when we got home. I told my son "when you are thinking about getting married, you have to think to yourself, 'would I hold her hand through butt surgery?' and if the answer is yes, then she might be the one". Of course he looked at me like I was crazy and he thinks I am a weirdo for posting this story on my blog. But it's real and life is real and I like to keep my blog real. So that was the really bad event of pregnancy week 22.

More Good...

I like to end things on a positive note, so I have a few more good things to tell you all!

My mother in law and father in law gave me a huge box of fresh fruits and veggies from a local farmer's market. Yum! If you follow me on Instagram, you have seen the pic. If not, come on over and follow me!

My son played two great baseball games in a tournament this weekend.

My husband played in his first kickball games of the season and won them both!

I finally upgraded my cell phone to the iPhone 5s! I love it!

While we were at the doctor's office for the umm...pain in my ass...we got to hear Marlie's heartbeat! It was in the 150's, which the doctor said was great! I love hearing her heartbeat. :)

Well, here was week 22 in a nutshell, thanks for following my adventures!

Saturday, April 5, 2014

2014 Ultimate Blog Party! #UBP14

Ultimate Blog Party 2014

This is my party post for for the 2014 Ultimate Blog Party! I am excited to be involved and make some new blogging friends!

A little about Michelle's Pixie Dust...

I started Michelle's Pixie Dust in 2012. I can't believe it's been two years already! I started this blog as a way to display my DIY projects. For my one year blogiversary, I wrote a more detailed post about my first year of blogging. You can read that HERE.

Ultimately, this blog has grown to be a reflection of me. I post about whatever is going on in my life at that time. Sometimes I am really into Cooking and finding new recipes, other times I am into Craft Projects and upcycling. My career is counseling, so I have posted different Creative Therapy Projects. Sometimes I post about parenting and my family life. Right now I am pregnant, so readers will find a lot of Pregnancy Posts!

At present, I am 28 years old. I have been married since 2012 to a wonderful, wonderful man. I have a son who is 13 years old (which if you are quickly doing the math, makes me a very young mama) and I am expecting my daughter to arrive in August of this year. I have two little dogs, Mustang and Stella, they are chiweenies and are completely our babies. We recently adopted a stray cat, Walter, who is sweet and sneaky and possesses all of those other cat-like qualities. I will graduate in less than a month with a Master's Degree in Rehabilitation Counseling. I have a Bachelor's of Science in Criminology and Criminal Justice with a minor in Psychology. And I still have yet to figure our exactly what a want to do for a career.

Sometimes I am a "bad blogger". Sometimes I don't post frequently or update my social media. One time I let my URL expire...As much as I love blogging, it usually falls at the bottom of my priority list. I get caught up with family and work and life (as many of you can relate)!

So thank you for stopping by my little piece of the internet and I hope you enjoy some of the things you read here. I love to connect with my readers, so please comment me and follow me on Facebook and Twitter.

Happy Blog Partying!

Friday, April 4, 2014

21 Week Bump Date: Pregnancy Love


I am already 21 weeks pregnant...We are half way there, how exciting! I have to say, I really love being pregnant.

I love that my husband and I created this beautiful little person.

I love that I get to have her with me all day right now. I can feel her move a little bit now and then, and it makes me happy every time. She is moving while I write this :)

I love thinking about our daughter who will be in our arms in just 19 more weeks.

I love the baby girl clothes that people keep giving me. Everything is so tiny! My son passed me up in height about a year ago, so I am amazed at the thought of having a tiny baby again.

I actually enjoy watching my belly grow and filling out my growing stash of maternity clothes.

Sometimes I just stop and think, "How amazing is it that there is an actual human growing inside of me?"

Of course there are a few pregnancy symptoms that I am not a huge fan of, such as:
  • Waking up to pee in the middle of the night
  • Lots of tossing and turning
  • Crying about ridiculous things
  • The wonderful mood swings (happy-angry-sad-angry-sad-happy-happy)

I have realized that the good outweighs the not-so-good and most importantly, every second is completely worth it.

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