update at 35 weeks.

this week was a little emotional for me.  in my one-line-a-day-journal, it was just a year ago this past week that PI took me on an amazing birthday trip to montreal.  as much as i loved that trip, it will forever have a little asterisk next to it.  it was in montreal that we found out that i was pregnant.  so for the next few weeks, as i document each day and the end of my pregnancy, i will journey through each day last year that was filled with so much hope, anticipation and utter heartbreak.  it's interesting to me the sort of symmetry in the timeline of these two pregnancies: our baby is due april 6th, the first day philip and i went out on a date after our miscarriage [which was a really big deal], and just as this pregnancy is ending my pregnancy last year was also ending. 

each night so far there have been some tears as i re-live whatever it was i was feeling last year on that day.  i want to go give 2013 alaina a big hug and promise her that it will all be ok in the end.  it makes my aches and pains at the end of each day hurt a little less as my heart fills with gratefulness.

how far along: 35 weeks yesterday.

size of baby: a large melon. apparently we are just using different sizes of large fruits now.

maternity clothes: today, just a maternity shirt. i am realizing as i start to move away from sweaters [mostly out of wishful dressing, not because it's actually any warmer here] that i only have a few maternity t-shirts, like literally 4. they are much more flattering and comfortable than regular ones at this point so i'm just kind of rotating through them.

stretch marks: OH MY GOD in the last week i actually got one. i took a picture of that little devil and sent it in a text to my mom that said, 'NOOOOOOOOOOOO!' the good news is that it's one, it's very small, and it's right inside my belly button, so when my belly shrinks and i have an innie once more it will be forever hidden.  but i was really hoping to go stretch-mark free.  i told my mom it's probably my punishment for getting my belly button pierced when i was 15 even though she had told me no repeatedly.

sleep: not so terrible other than the big wake ups to roll over my giant whale body.

best moment of the week: watching philomena and realizing how lucky i am to be having this baby, who is all mine, who i already love more than i can say.

movement: this kid is getting hiccups like crazy.  at least 1-2 times daily.  both philip and aj got to feel them this week, and on two different occasions baby and i had hiccups at the same time.

cravings: nothing weird this week.  i finally made my own cherry turnovers, which i had been craving and searching for in every bakery in boston i could find.

complaints: getting more and more uncomfortable.  sitting on the couch is hard.  sitting up in bed is hard.  rolling over is hard.  you get the point.

belly button in//out: oh this damned belly button. out.

wedding ring on//off: no change! on! no swelling for this mama, thank goodness.

aversions: unchanged.

what i miss most: strangely, this week it was getting dressed.  i actually had a few fun excursions in the past week, like a double dinner date with my blogger bestie and some family in town this weekend.  so getting dressed to go 'out' makes me feel much bigger, because i am way beyond that cute-little-preggo-belly stage and into oh-my-god-are-you-due-tomorrow stage.  i miss pulling on a sundress or skinny jeans or a sexy bra that isn't an affront to all lingerie like the ones i currently sport.

what i'm looking forward to: trying to enjoy these last few weeks of pregnancy.  it's my last few for who knows how long [maybe ever if we just have the one], so i will enjoy every hiccup, every kick to my rib cage, every time his little bum moves across my belly.

labor signs: increased cramping from last week, but still no braxton hicks or anything else.

nursery: YOU GUYS, it looks so good.  we did so much this past week.  got a rug that actually fits, picked out curtains [not hung up yet though], bought a nightstand for the rocker, painted some frames and actually hung a few things up in the nursery.  i am loving this room so much more than i thought i would.

emotions: total and utter thankfulness this week.  i may complain, but it's all in good fun.  i realize how lucky i am, having miscarried two babies before this pregnancy.  and i know so many other women out there have it much worse than i have.  my heart is full of graciousness. 

2013 in 12 photos.

so, i probably should have done this sooner.  it's a new year and as the first day of that new year i suppose i ought to be looking forward, not backward.  but i did something pretty cool last year that i really wanted to share.

last year when i moved out to boston, my mom and i were worried about not spending as much time talking.  we're pretty tight.  so on new year's day last year she called me quite excited because she had an idea.  we would each take a picture a day - could have been something special we did that day, what we had for dinner, a beautiful sight we saw - and upload it to a shared file in dropbox so we could each see what the other was up to each day.  

over the last week i've seen lots of my friends post their favorite photo of 2013.  i scrolled back through my instagram page, wondering what i would have picked as my favorite.  but a more accurate description of my year wouldn't be from instagarm - it would be from my daily photo challenge with my momma.  so, lucky you, i am going to share with you my favorite photo from each month - the photo that kind of summed up my month.  


january was a major transitional time for us.  we spent about two weeks crashing in my dad's guest room before we were able to move into our perfect south end loft.  since i was home all of the time, and PI was home most of the time [a HUGE adjustment for us!], we were mostly unpacked + settled within the month.  so this is a photo of my unpacked + styled bookshelf that i took one january day.  


my favorite photo of the month - also taken on my birthday.  i was walking down tremont to get a mani//pedi before our dinner date in the north end [strega, duh].  february was a good month, but i felt it was more a month about me - not just because of my birthday.  i decided to get back to work on my book, which allowed me to feel more settled and comfortable in our new place.  it was good. 


far + away the hardest month of the year.  march 20th we found out our baby we were over the moon about had no heartbeat, and on march 25th i was sent home with a paper bag full of drugs to have our miscarriage at home.  this photo was taken march 28th, three days into the miscarriage [which ended up lasting 5 days, not just 12 hours].  my mom came out and surprised me, which i desperately needed.  i would never have survived that month without my husband or my momma there to support me, and most importantly, just hold me.  


it's another one of those days everyone will remember where they were - especially us bostonians.  the marathon bombings not only changed our city, but they had a big impact on my relationship with boston as well.  i felt a sense of home that hadn't really kicked in since our move to boston, and PI and i spent many, many days after the 15th outside exploring our beautiful home.  this was taken after the bombings but before the lockdown, when we walked the freedom trail just for the hell of it and we saw the first signs of spring.


may, the month of medicine.  in may we had our first visit with a fertility specialist to find out why it was so hard for us to get pregnant.  there were blood tests, 3D ultrasounds and awkward conversations about our sex life.  this is me and a stuffed uterus in our specialist's office during our initial consultation.  but it wasn't just the month of doctors for me - my brother also had his knee surgery in may, and for a few weeks i played the part of full-time nurse.  we watched a lot of movies.  but in the end we both turned out healthier than when we started the month.  


yoga.  early in the month my girlfirend smita introduced me to back bay yoga studio, and immediately after that first afternoon hip hop yoga session i found myself there every single day.  it was hugely theraputic for me, and not to mention good for my body.  so june was the month of yoga, and this was my daily setup.  


july was a happy, happy, happy month.  this is me on a typical july day, being happy [although incredibly sweaty].  maybe it was all the yoga, maybe it was finally starting to feel a little like myself again after the miscarriage... whatever it was, PI and i had a great july.  we bought an air conditioner.  we had wine and grapes outside in our courtyard.  we saw she + him. we went to revere beach.  we just hung around and had fun, and it was a super fabulous time. 


thailand, obvi.  but more than just traveling to thailand, august was a month for the books for me + Pi.  we found out about pregnancy #3 in thailand and man oh man did my man take good care of me.  i learned immediately how strong + supportive he could be, moreso than he ever had been even before.  thanks to my yoga practice i was able to let things go and surrender the pregnancy to the will of the universe, knowing it was out of my hands.  there was some stress in august, but mostly it was big smiles, naps, and airplane rides for us.


september will be remembered as the month of my girlfirends back in denver.  a big, scary event in the life of one of my best friends brought me to denver for a week unexpectedly, and i spent every single day with the girls above.  i was reminded how, no matter where we all live, we are always there for each other.  our lives all look so different now, but when shit goes down there is no other group of girls i'd rather say i know has my back.  it was a roller coaster ride but a good time to be back at home with my bestest ladies.  


in october i gained a new family.  my mom found the love of her life and six kids from five different states flew down to st john to celebrate their live and get to know each other.  while it may have looked like just a vacation, i flew home with a new step-dad, two step-sisters and a step-brother.  pretty fantastic.  and sure, the island wasn't too bad either.


and all of a sudden, there was the belly.  it's true - one day you wake up and think, 'where the hell did this belly come from?'  i started looking and feeling really pregnant, and the pregnancy started being more of a focus in my life.  we worked on the registry.  we found out that we are having a boy [!!!].  we started talking about names and nurseries, birth plans and bassinets.  i guess, all of a sudden, it becase really real.  


december is always about the holiday season, and this year the holiday season was best summed up by this photo of my mom's amazing christmas mantle.  thanks to obligations at the highlands house as well as the difficulty of flying during pregnancy, we planned the trip for two and a half weeks.  and as i am now typing this our trip has been extended to three weeks thanks to the huge nor'easter about to whoop boston the day we were supposed to fly home.  so i get a few extra days to celebrate the new year with my friends + family in denver - never a bad thing.

so that about sums up my year.  we aren't doing picture a day again in 2014, but the journey in 2013 definitely inspired me to take note of the little things that happen every day.  because it really is true that nothing changes day to day, but when you look back on a year, everything is different.

a bit on the duchess + her prince.

some of you will read that title and roll your eyes, and think that it's just a baby.  who cares?  or that the monarchy is so outdated that it's bizarre to call anyone your highness.  the world does, after all, have bigger things to worry about than a single baby.  you'll say that every baby born deserves this much attention.

well, guess what?  if i could, i would give every baby born this much attention.  for reals.

see, i am a little bit birth-obsessed.  i'm not talking about baby fever or anything, but just birth.  i love hearing about it and reading about it.  the last two times i got pregnant, the first thing i looked into was how i'd want to birth.   i read every birth story i can get my hands on - caesarean or vaginal, stranger or friend.  if i stumble across a blog and the blogger is pregnant at any stage, i'm hooked.  i want to hear about the journey and know how it ends.  with moans and blood and bright lights and big smiles and tears,  i know.  but i have to hear the story.  [this is actually how i got hooked on enJOY it, justina blakeney and the little things we do - read they were pregnant and couldn't stop ever since.]  i really hate to admit this -- but i even went through a phase where i watched one born every minute.  don't judge me.

i know this might make me sound creepy.  but from a woman who's been trying to get pregnant for two years and just can't seem to make it past the ninth week, i get to live vicariously though all these pregnant beauties.  i get to read up on what to expect and what i have to look forward to.  and yes, i know that pregnancy isn't all glows and weight gain that goes straight to the belly - but i don't care.  i can't wait to experience every up and down, every pound gained, myself.  it will happen one day, i'm certain.  but for now i am relegated to reading everyone else's pregnancy journeys and birth stories.  i can sip wine, eat sushi and deepen my yoga practice. 

so i've been one of those people on 'royal baby watch.'  and not just because it's the royal baby - although of course that is part of it! - but because i love that any-day-now anxiety.  and when i saw the cnn live feed of kate + wills stepping out with their prince [yes, i watched it], it filled me with joy.  not just because he's an heir to the throne.  every new mom looks down on her son as a prince [my little nephew ryder is still nicknamed 'the sir'].  and no, most women don't step out in jenny packham and heels the day after their delivery, but that doesn't make their deliveries any less special in my opinion.  but it also doesn't make kate's delivery any less grueling.

well, this has kind of rambled on.  i just wanted to throw my blog out into the world of royal baby posts i guess.  and tell you how infatuated i am with birth stories.  if you've got one to share, please do it, by all means!

and, my little prince or princess, we are ready for you to make your royal debut, whenever you are ready.