Wednesday, March 28, 2012


After speaking with the OB yesterday, we decided that due to this liver enzyme condition, it would be in our best interest to induce before 40-weeks. Like I mentioned yesterday, I have mixed feelings about being induced, but I need to do what is in the best interest of baby #2 and myself. Bella was an early bird and I'm really hoping this little girl is, too. I'd much rather go naturally, than be induced but I really don't have much say in the matter, do I?

The OB scheduled my induction fro Wednesday April 11th at 6:30am. I haven't had my induction briefing yet and I'm not really sure what to expect. I've had friends who have been induced and their stories differ greatly. Some had very successful inductions and some had less than successful inductions (i.e. c-sections). I have an almost 2-year-old and I don't have time for a c-section. The overall goal is to get the baby safely, but I'd really prefer to have another vaginal birth. Fingers crossed, please!

So in exactly two-weeks we will be meeting our baby girl! Wow, I'd love to say that this pregnancy has flown by but it really hasn't. Ever since the sporadic bed rest and the liver issue crept up, this pregnancy has slowly crept along. I'm not wishing away this pregnancy, but I will certainly be glad it's over once my baby girl is in my arms. Again, wow! It hasn't hit me that I will soon be a mother of two little girls. Hopefully the excitement and anticipation of the next two weeks will help the time pass quickly.

I called my mom today and asked her to amend her flight reservations. Her original plans were to arrive a few days before my actual due date, on the 14th. Her new plans have her arriving the day before my induction, on the 10th. Part of me hopes I go into labor (on my own) before the scheduled induction, but part of me also hopes that everything goes according to plan. For Bella's birth, my mom arrived at the hospital 15 minutes before Bella was born. Talk about good timing. I'd really like for her to be present for the birth of baby #2 because, well, I want my mommy with me. Obviously Ian will be in the delivery room, but there's something about having my mom there that makes everything seem okay. Not that Ian can't handle anything that is thrown at him, but knowing what I know about motherhood now, moms provide comfort to their children (yes, even adult children) in a way other people simply cannot.

There is a lot to do before this little one makes her grand debut. The house needs to be deep cleaned from top to bottom... meals need to be prepared and frozen... a hospital bag needs to be packed... and I've got to spend a ton of time with my Isabella Eve. In about a week she will turn 2-years-old and in exactly two-weeks her world is about to be rocked. I want her to feel as special as possible and like she is a part of this. I know it will take some adjustment and a lot of patience, but she will be an amazing big sister once she finally gets to meet her little sister.

Well, I have a lot to do and not a lot of energy to spare, so I'd better get going. I'm sleeping pretty well these days, but I still need to bank as much sleep as possible before we return to those nights of incremental sleep. Oh joy!

Love always,
Ian, Kim, Bella & Baby #2

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Full Term

Today marks my 37th week of pregnancy, woo-hoo! I am officially full term and this little girl can arrive any time within the next 3-weeks. Oh my goodness, I cannot believe I will have two darling daughters in less than a month's time... how exciting (and scary)!

I had my weekly OB appointment and it went quite well. The OB who delivered Bella has been treating me for a liver enzyme condition associated with pregnancy and I feel like I've formed a strong bond with her. Not only did she safely deliver Bella, but she took the time to listen to my concerns about the itching. She spent a good 15-minutes counseling Ian and me last week and assured us that she is on top of things. Today was no different and she went over the results of my blood work from last week. She said everything looks good, except for this one particular liver enzyme. Fortunately with the aid of medication, the enzyme level is decreasing and I am getting some relief from all the itching. We discussed the concerns I had regarding possible side effects of the medication and the OB assured me that she wouldn't have prescribed the medication if she didn't feel the benefits outweighed the risks. Knowing how uncomfortable I've been with the itching and the impact this whole thing is having on my liver, the OB suggested I be induced before 40-weeks. She'd prefer that we wait until 39-weeks to induce, but a lot depends on the availability at the hospital. By tomorrow I'll have an induction date!

I have mixed emotions about being induced. With Bella, my water broke and I began contracting on my own. By the time we arrived at the hospital, I was 5cm dilated and contracting regularly. Labor and delivery were fairly easy. Obviously I have expectations on how this labor and delivery will go, but I can only hope this labor and delivery goes just as well.

It's hard to believe that our little girl will be here in less than 3-weeks. We have been anticipating her arrival over these past 37-weeks and it's hard to believe it'll be over soon enough. I can't say that I'll be sad when I'm no longer pregnant, because this pregnancy hasn't always been easy. But I'll be sad that this little girl will no longer rely solely on me for everything. I'll be sharing those duties with her daddy, too. Perhaps I can make this one a mama's girl, since her big sister is such a daddy's girl?!? Or maybe we'll try for #3 in a few years and I'll have a mama's boy... haha! I wouldn't be at all disappointed if we stopped at two or tried for #3 and were blessed with another darling daughter... but let's just see how this one goes before we go making any decisions regarding that matter. Haha!

Feeling blessed and relieved that this pregnancy could end any day now and we'd have a happy and healthy baby girl in our arms.

Ian, Kim, Bella & Baby #2

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Maternity Photos

Today I took a chance and did something I thought I'd never do... I had maternity photos taken. We were supposed to have done this about a month ago, at the u/s boutique we had been to, but between bed rest and Ian's busy work schedule, we never got around to it. I wasn't disappointed because I wasn't truly comfortable with the thought of someone taking pictures of my pregnant belly, but when another opportunity arose, I immediately jumped at it.

A sweet friend of ours, Ursula, who I've known pretty much since I moved here has been dabbling in photography for the past few years. She takes beautiful photographs of her two darling daughters and I've always admired them. She makes it look so easy! When I found out she was venturing out into professional photography, I wanted to book a session with her before it was too late. I didn't have any expectations, based only on my reservations to have someone photograph me, but I knew Ursula would do an amazing job... and that she did! We had a lot of fun and I am so glad we did this. She even took a few bare belly shots (now that took some coaxing)! Thank you so much, Ursula!!! 3e

Here are a few of my favorite photos from our session:

These photos are absolutely beautiful and I'm so glad we documented my pregnancy... even if I was 37-weeks and hugely pregnant. Ursula is such an amazing person, that she helped me feel so comfortable, in my own pregnant skin. This photo session was a huge confidence booster for me and will certainly help these next three weeks pass quickly... or so I hope! Ursula will also be doing a newborn photo session for us and I cannot wait. I based on her talent, I know those photos will turn out great, too. 

Love always,
Ian, Kim, Bella & Baby #2

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

On a quest for answers

Unfortunately, the blood work my OB ordered yesterday needed me to fast so I was unable to have my blood work done yesterday. I went for blood work this morning and made the mistake of going to Quest Diagnostics without an appointment. I went before 8am and the place was still crowded with people. When I signed in, I was told the wait would be at least an hour. Oh joy! At least I didn't have Bella with me...

The highlight of my trip to Quest was the crackhead who walked in talking yelling on her cell phone about how she didn't get into an accident in her boyfriend's car. She then demanded to have her blood drawn immediately because she didn't have time to wait. When the receptionist asked if she had an appointment, she replied, "no" and then went on a rant about how precious her time is. HAHAHA! I'm not sure what happened because as she was yelling at the receptionist, I was lucky enough to get called back to have my blood drawn. Thank goodness.

While I was having my blood drawn, there was a woman (I think) who was freaking out about how Quest didn't use butterfly needles on adults. She was either mildly retarded or a huge drama queen... I couldn't quite figure that one out. She claimed that if the phlebotomist didn't use a butterfly needle, she would pass out and die? Seriously?!? Even if she did pass out, chances are she wouldn't die. Again, I'm not certain what happened because before I realized it, my blood was drawn and I quickly exited.

What is it about places like Quest that brings out the crazy in people? Crackheads, drama queens and IV drug users. Such fun. Next time I will be making an appointment for 6:30am, when they open. Crackheads, drama queens and IV drug users aren't usually awake at that time of the day.

So now the waiting game begins. Part of me hopes my levels come back normal but part of me hopes my levels come back abnormal. If my levels are abnormal, then the OB will know what's wrong with me and we can come up with a plan of action. If my levels are normal, then I'll be stuck in limbo and I'll have several more weeks of itchiness. I have a feeling something isn't right and that this isn't allergy related. If it were allergy related, then my body would respond to anti-histimines, but its not. This whole thing is really frustrating... and itchy.

Love always,
Ian, Kim, Bella & Baby #2

Tuesday, March 13, 2012


Today began with the best of intentions... but today turned out to be one HELL of a day! Days like today make me despise my Type A personality because when things don't go according to plan, I tend to get a little frazzled. Fortunately, I had the assistance of our amazing babysitter, Jessica to assist me in our day of chaos. Without her, I would not have survived and I would  have crawled back into bed until Ian got home.

First, my prenatal massage was canceled, which was disappointing, but I was able to reschedule for later in the day. Then, Jessica arrived bright and early, but Bella was still sound asleep. We enjoyed chatting and planning for the next few weeks, so perhaps Bella's extended sleep was a blessing. I was also able to schedule an OB appointment for myself and an appointment with the pediatrician for Bella. I only had 45-minutes to spare between appointments, but I was desperate to schedule both appointments. With Jessica's assistance, I was certain we'd be able to execute this plan without a hitch... but boy, was I wrong.

The OB was running an hour behind because she was stuck in surgery at the hospital, which meant I needed to reschedule one of the two appointments. I decided to wait for the OB because I was having some issues with itching and I needed to figure out what was going on. I called the pediatrician from the OB's waiting room and rescheduled Bella's appointment for the afternoon. I wouldn't have Jessica with me in the afternoon and I would have to wake Bella up early from her nap, but she needed to be seen by the pediatrician. The OB arrived earlier than expected, so my wait time was kept to a minimum. After discussing my symptoms (my entire body itching, especially at night), she decided to send me for blood work and start me on a medication. She is treating me for Cholestasis and I'm hoping the medication works, because I NEED some relief from the itching at night. Nothing has helped... no antihistimines, no itch relief creams, no oatmeal baths, no free and clear detergents... NOTHING! And the itching is especially bad at night, which means I'm not getting much sleep at night. By the time we returned home from the OB appointment, it was time for lunch. Jessica took care of lunch and nap time, while I ran around dropping off and picking up prescriptions.

Bella's pediatrician appointment was at 4pm, which meant I needed to wake her up from her nap early... bummer. Luckily she was in a great mood when I woke her up and we ran to the pediatrician's office with minutes to spare. You see, Bella has these little bumps on her booty that resemble bug bites, only the bumps heal but more appear a day or two later. I figured it was a bug bite that became infected and that's exactly what the pediatrician thought. She prescribed Bella a topical antibiotic ointment, which was to be applied three times a day until the area was completely clear. I was relieved it was nothing too bad and that she didn't need oral antibiotics. We left the pediatrician's office and headed to the pharmacy... yet again.

Ian had to work late, so Bella and I played outside until it was time for dinner. We ate dinner, just the two of us and then cleaned up to go back outside to play until Ian got home. My child LOVES playing outside, despite the 80+ degree weather and I love that about her. In my opinion, children need time outside each and every day (weather permitting) to run around and play. They have a ton of energy to burn and I think it's important for children to have at least an hour (or two) of physical activity every day. I can't wait for our swing set to be installed because that will be hours of fun and physical activity for Bella, all in the comfort of our backyard.

I headed out just before 8pm for my hour long prenatal massage. And let me just say, the massage tonight felt AMAZING! I am happy to report that my edema is non-existent and the massage therapist is certain that with continued massage, it will continue to be non-existent. Yay! Too bad I can't have daily massages because that would be amazing, but every other week is just as amazing. Can't wait for my next massage in 2-weeks! A night of relaxation was just what I needed and hopefully I'll be able to get some sleep tonight.

Speaking of sleep, it's time for me to get off this darn computer and hit the sack. 8-hours of sleep over the past 2-days is not enough for normal me, let alone a pregnant me. I am desperate for sleep. But all things considered, today was one hell of a day, but everything that I needed to get done, got done and that's all that matters.

Love always,
Ian, Kim, Bella & Baby #2

Monday, March 12, 2012

Mundane Monday

I had yet another day to myself and I did absolutely nothing! I didn't lift a finger and was able to relax all day long. Unfortunately, I was on bed rest, so the day was pretty darn boring. Normally I would have gone out shopping or done something fun, but instead, I laid on the couch and watched mindless television all day. I really shouldn't complain, but being on bed rest can be a royal pain in the butt. Thankfully the OB removed the heavy lifting and driving restrictions, so I am able to tote my toddler around and drive for whatever distance I want. Thank goodness!

Today while Bella was with Grandma Ruth and Uncle Donald, the three of them went to Busch Gardens for the day. I was expecting them to stay a few hours, but they stayed well past Bella's nap time. Fortunately Bella napped in her stroller and returned home exhausted but happy. They sent us pictures throughout the day and Bella was having a blast. She even refused to come out of the bounce house because she was having so much fun. Grandma Ruth had to send the ride attendant in to drag Bella out... how funny!

By the time Ian and Bella returned home from Grandma Ruth's, we played outside for a little while and before we knew it, it was time for our bath, book and bed routine. I'm sure Bella will get a good night's sleep tonight, as she had a very busy day. The babysitter will be here tomorrow (thank goodness) and I have a few errands to run and a few things to take care of around the house. Hopefully I can have a somewhat productive day, even if I'm moving at a snail's pace.

But that's all from us... a pretty uneventful day for me, but I definitely needed it.

Love always,
Ian, Kim, Bella & Baby #2

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Easy like Sunday morning... afternoon... and evening

After an eventful day yesterday, Ian and I took advantage of Bella being at Grandma Ruth's and slept in. I slept in until almost 9am and Ian slept in until almost 8am. Granted, we did spring forward for daylight savings, but the extra sleep was desperately needed. The morning was lazy and laid back... just what we needed.

Ian took care of some yard work this morning (isn't he the best?) and spent nearly 3-hours mowing, edging and trimming the grass, shrubs and trees. He even trimmed two of our palm trees, which is no easy task! While Ian was outside working, I was inside reading the Sunday paper and clipping coupons. I also cleaned out the fridge and made a shopping list for the grocery store. It's been nearly 2-weeks since our last big grocery shopping trip and we were out of a lot of things. I debated on whether or not to hand the list off to Ian or accompany him to the grocery store. After a brief conversation with Ian, we decided to grab lunch and then go grocery shopping together.

We went to the Genghis Grill for lunch and it was fabulous! This restaurant is a Mongolian grill in which you fill a bowl with meat and veggies, fill a little bowl with spices and sauces and hand it off to chefs to cook on a huge grill. The food is super yummy and we love this place. It was the perfect way to begin our grocery shopping expedition. After lunch we headed to the Neighborhood Walmart to do the bulk of our shopping. Since we had a lot to get, I opted to ride the little scooter around while Ian walked with a shopping cart (you can stop laughing now). I think we spent half as much as we do at Publix or Target, so I was really pleased with my decision to try it. I've shopped here before, but never for such a big shop. The best part is that a new Neighborhood Walmart will be opening less than a mile from our house, so this will definitely be part of our shopping routine. There were a few specific items on the list that could only be purchased at Publix, so we headed to Publix next to finish our shopping expedition. By 3pm we were home and our fridge and pantry were full again.

The rest of the day was spent lounging around (me) and working (Ian). We did watch the selection Sunday special to see who would be playing in the NCAA tournament. Two teams I will be rooting for are the Loyola Greyhounds (a Baltimore team) and the USF Bulls!!! Ian continued working and I continued lounging around. All of my laziness paid off because I felt great today. I didn't feel overly exhausted, overheated or lightheaded. Perhaps the doctor is right and I do need to be on bed rest? I have all day tomorrow to continue resting, thanks to Grandma Ruth. We completed the evening with a phone call with Bella. She is sooooooo cute! She said "Hi daddy... hi Kaisey boy... and hi mommy!" She then told us all "bye-bye and goodnight." I miss that adorable little girl and hearing her sweet voice was the highlight of my day!

Well, Ian is still working and I'm still lounging around. Per doctor's orders, it's what I'm supposed to be doing so I should stop feeling guilty. The bed rest isn't for my benefit, it's for baby #2's benefit, I just need to keep that in mind. It's a temporary solution to a temporary problem... in a matter of weeks, it will be a moot point. Just gotta keep my eye on the prize... baby #2!

Love always,
Ian, Kim, Bella & Baby #2

Saturday, March 10, 2012

Never a dull moment

went to the aquarium this morning for some family fun. I knew I would be pushing myself, but I wanted to spend time with Ian and Bella. I felt contractions as we were walking around and kept going to keep up with the family. We don't have too many of these days left with Bella and I want to
make the most of our precious time we have remaining as a family of three.
Admiring the "fishies" and "shaaaaaarks"
"Here fishy, fishy, fishy..."
Before nap time, Bella and I took a bath together. The bath actually started out as my bath, but an adorable little diaper-only wearing a baby wanted to join me. The bath wasn't as relaxing as my usual bath, that's for sure. We had fun and it was a great way to unwind before nap time. I laid in bed and watched movies while Bella napped and Ian worked. It was during this time, I noticed that baby #2 wasn't as active as she normally is. She is so active, day or night, and for a period of nearly 2-hours she barely moved. I tracked her movements for another hour and headed downstairs to discuss this issue with Ian. We decided it would be best to call the OB and see what the on-call doctor had to say. After discussing the decreased movement with Dr. Zweibach, he decided it would be best if I went to L&D for monitoring. So I headed to L&D and Ian headed to the Peluso's to drop Bella off.

Once I was hooked up to the monitor, baby #2 began moving like crazy! It was as if she knew where we were and wanted to make me look like an idiot. But, once I was hooked up to the monitors, another problem arose. The nurse asked if I had high blood pressure normally and I do not. She said my BP was 156/98 and that she was concerned. She called the OB who ordered a urine sample and blood work. Thankfully everything came back normal! After nearly 4-hours of being hooked up to the monitors, my BP dropped to 128/72 and that was low enough to be discharged. It's still high for me, as I'm normally 115/70 but it was a definite improvement than the other readings today. The OB wants me back in bed rest until my next appointment on Friday... super, just super. Luckily my dad arrives Wednesday and I will have help with Bella on Monday and Tuesday. As long as my BP is fine on Friday, I'm assuming I can return to normal activities.
Ian, catching some z's at the hospital.
There's never a dull moment around our house and this little girl is certainly testing her limits. I am thankful that I went to L&D delivery today because I had no idea my BP was so high. It's almost like she was telling me that I needed to go and get checked out. This little girl may be stubborn and difficult but she was looking out for me today. What a sweetheart! I felt totally fine, with the exception of a minor headache and never knew my BP was elevated.

Only 5 weeks and 3 days to go... or maybe less if she decides to make her debut a little early! =)

Love always,
Ian, Kim, Bella & Baby #2

Friday, March 9, 2012

It's Friday!

This week has been rough... between trying to get back into the swing of things and overdoing it, I am exhausted. Thankfully it's Friday and that means the beginning of the weekend. More importantly, it's the last weekend of Ian's busy season! We don't have any plans this weekend and I hope to conjure up enough energy to do something fun with the family.

Today Stephanie and Connor came over to play. I figured the kids could play outside, burn some energy and then we'd have lunch. Bella and Connor played outside at the sand and water table and chased each other in the grass. The weather was warm so the kids were pretty hot and rosy cheeked after about an hour. We decided it was time to come inside and head to lunch. We went to a local Mexican restaurant called Luna's, which has some pretty yummy food! We finished lunch and headed home just in time for nap time, which I definitely participated in. Bella took a fantastic nap and so did I. I guess we both needed the extra rest.

We decided to eat out for dinner and went to Beef O'Brady's. It's a family-friendly restaurant and the food is pretty good. Plus, there are always coupons for $5 off so it's a cheap place to eat, too. We discovered that Bella LOVES ranch dressing and dipped EVERYTHING in ranch at dinner. It was really cute! She refused to sit in the high chair so she sat alongside her daddy and ate at the table like a big girl.

After dinner we went home for our nightly bath, book and bed routine. Everyone in our household is exhausted and so after Bella was tucked into bed, Ian and I caught up on some DVR'ed shows and I also caught up on blogging. It's an early night for us, but that's okay. We work and play hard so we deserve the extra rest.

Love always,
Ian, Kim, Bella & Baby #2

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Baby Shower

Even though this is our second baby, my play group friends thought it would be nice to host a baby shower to help welcome baby #2 into the world. The shower was hosted by my dear friend, Stephanie, who put a lot of time, thought and effort into hosting an absolutely beautiful shower (I think she was also taking pictures). It was a small, intimate gathering, which was perfect for me. I didn't want a huge baby shower or anything, because after all, this is our second baby.

Stephanie had beautifully decorated her house in purple and lavender colors, to match our nursery. She didn't go overboard with decorations, but the decorations she did have were gorgeous. She made a display of wooden letters for baby #2's name and centered everything around that. The letters were darling and I cannot believe she made them... she is so crafty! I seriously hope she took pictures of everything because I would love to add them to this post.

Stephanie made some of my favorite foods, including her husband's famous cheese ball and yellow cupcakes with chocolate frosting. I'm really not a picky eater, but I do love the Freedman cheese ball and Stephanie's baking. The 7-layer salad she made was probably one of the best salads I've ever had and I will definitely be asking her for the recipe. She also made this delicious chicken pockets, which were mom and kid friendly. And the icing on the cake (literally) were the chocolate cheesecake cupcakes with cream cheese frosting. The food was great and don't worry, I didn't gorge myself on sweets, I made sure to eat quasi-healthy. But I am certainly looking forward to devouring the leftover cupcakes in the near future.

The baby shower was hosted during our normal play date, which was great. The kids played, the moms chatted and the shower was really laid back. I opened gifts at the urging of one of the other moms and received many nice things. Although, I will say, the best gifts I received were diapers and wipes! We can never have too many of those! I received a hand-embroidered onesie with baby #2's initial on it and those cool monthly age stickers for pictures (I've always wanted to do those). Bella even received a book and barrettes as a special big sister gift. How nice! The gifts were really thoughtful and sweet.

I would like to thank my friends: Amanda, Amber, Heather, Jessica and Stephanie for hosting and attending my baby shower. It was such a special event and made me even more excited to welcome baby #2 into this group of friends. I am especially thankful that Stephanie hosted such a beautiful event for me, even though this is our second baby. Thank you so much girls!

Tonight, even though I am feeling rather terrible (physically), I am also feeling very blessed. Bella and I have a great group of friends. We have all been friends for quite some time and I hope these friendships continue.

Love always,
Ian, Kim, Bella & Baby #2

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Too much

Today, I really overexerted myself and now I am paying for it. My body tried to tell me several times to slow down or stop, but I just kept going and now I feel awful. I'm having contractions, my round ligament pain has returned and my body is simply exhausted. I need to stop being so damn stubborn and listen to my body for once. 

We began our day with a play date with some new friends. The kids were contently playing inside when my child convinced the other kids they should go play outside. Kristin, the hostess, suggested that we stay inside but I could tell the kids were itching to go outside and like a fool, I said going outside would be great. The kids played outside for about an hour and a half and I was exhausted when it was all said and done. Chasing a toddler around a huge yard is definitely not what I should have been doing, but honestly, what's a mother to do? Bella also had a blast chasing the host family's cat around. The play date was wonderful and very laid back. It's exactly what we needed.

When we got home, I made lunch for Bella and myself and began leaving some instructions for Ian. Ian was working from home so that I could attend a consignment pre-sale during Bella's nap time. I told Ian that Bella should be down for a nap, no later than 1pm and that if she should wake up early, leave her in her crib for a few minutes. You see, Ian has the habit of running into her room and scooping her out of the crib every time she makes a peep. I have a love/hate relationship with him about that. I love that he loves her so much that he wants to tend to her every need, but I also hate that she plays him like a fiddle. She's a daddy's girl... what can I say? 

Now on to the consignment sale... I received a pre-sale pass and was able to shop when it first opened. I quickly headed to the 2T and 3T sections to pick up some things for Bella. Baby #2 has more than enough clothes, between all the hand-me-downs and new outfits people are giving her. She does not need one more stitch of clothing, except for the custom outfits I order from my seamstress (of course). I picked up a total of 17 outfits for Bella, all of which were sets. I love finding dresses with bloomers and shirts with matching shorts or pants. I think bottoms really finish an outfit, especially for little girls who often don't sit in the most lady-like positions. I also headed to the toddler boys section to look at some outfits for my friend Stephanie's son, Connor. I found three really handsome-looking polo and short sets (yes, I am obsessed with sets). Hopefully Stephanie likes them and if not, she can consign them or give them away. On my way out, I hit up the toy section and picked Bella up a Fisher Price dollhouse. It came with all the little pieces and was in great condition. I then proceeded to the checkout counter to tally up the goods. I picked up 20 outfits and the dollhouse for $110! The most expensive thing I purchased was the dollhouse for $15 and a smocked 2-piece set for $11. Other than that, everything else was under $5... can't beat it!

By the time I got home, I was exhausted. I was having contractions off and on, but nothing regular. According to the OB, the contractions are bound to occur this late in my pregnancy and as long as my water doesn't break or they aren't regular, I'm good to go. Today's contractions were down right painful and I almost felt bad enough to pull over once or twice. I over did it and my body was certainly telling me to slow down. Once I got home, I took a warm bath and laid in bed until Bella woke up from her nap. Speaking of Bella's nap, she took an almost 4-hour nap. I was thankful for the long nap (as was Ian) and we headed out to dinner once everyone was up and ready. At dinner, I felt terrible. I couldn't wait to get home and lay down again. I assisted Ian with the bath, book and bed routine and once Bella was asleep, I hopped in bed myself. I am exhausted, my body hurts and I need a good night's sleep. So without further adieu, goodnight everyone! Tomorrow I will take it easy and not push myself as much, I promise. 

Love always,
Ian, Kim, Bella & Baby #2

P.S. Ian is SWAMPED at work. He literally works from 8am-6pm and then again from 9pm-2am... every day! He is feeling overwhelmed but he is making such great progress. The managing partners are very happy with his work and most importantly, the clients are very happy with his work. I told him tonight I'd gladly switch places with him. He could be pregnant for the next week and I'd play tax consultant for a week... unfortunately (after realizing just how uncomfortable I had been feeling for most of the day) he declined my offer. Haha! Only 8 more days until March 15th!!! And only 40 more days left until my due date. Well played Ian, well played. =)

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Babysitter Appreciation

I have mentioned in several postings, just how FABULOUS our babysitter is. She demonstrated her fabulosity once again today and I am so grateful for her help. Not only did she watch Bella for 5-hours, but she cleaned my house (without me having to ask)! Jessica is great Bella, cleans a mean house and treats us with the utmost respect. We LOVE her!

While Bella was at home with Jessica, I made an appointment to get a facial. Skin care is something I don't really up with and I typically use a generic facial cleanser in the shower. Today's facial brought a renewed sense of just how important skin care is. The facial was wonderful, my face finally had that pregnancy glow (if only for a few hours) and I made another appointment a little closer to my due date. I almost fell asleep during the treatment, that's how relaxed I was. Luckily the esthetician recommended a very basic facial cleanser, that could actually be purchased at Walmart. My skin usually behaves during pregnancy, which is nice, considering all the crazy hormones.

I ran to Walmart to pick up a few "hospital bag" and post-partum items. I'm not one to bring much with me to the hospital, because I'll just end up having to take it all home with me. I purchased a few toiletry items and a few new pairs of pajamas because that's what I intend on wearing around the house for the first week or so. I also picked up a few goodies for Bella's Easter basket. Going to Walmart (or any store for that matter) by myself is always such a treat. I can take my time browsing and not have to worry about time constraints. Unfortunately, pregnancy makes it difficult to walk around for long periods of time so my browsing is almost always cut short by a trip to the restroom.

When I returned home, Bella and Jessica were playing in the family room. Jessica had turned on music and the two of them were dancing around. Bella was giggling and having a blast. I quickly went upstairs (per Jessica's orders) to rest and catch up on some DVR'ed shows. I knew if I stayed downstairs, I'd find some chore to complete, and so did Jessica. The two of them went and played outside before lunch, which is one of Bella's favorite things to do. She made a huge mess at her sand and water table, but I didn't worry one bit because Jessica cleaned everything up, including Bella. They ate lunch together and she put Bella down for a nap. That's when she asked if I'd like some help around the house. I wasn't offended or anything, because my house isn't as sparkling clean as it usually is and I know it. I'm not supposed to be exerting myself, unless it's absolutely necessary and cleaning is included on the no-no list. I keep up with keeping things tidy and clean, I just needed a good cleaning by someone who is ready, willing and able. Jessica worked for about an hour and a half and after she was finished, my house was restored to it's normal, sparkling clean condition. I was so thankful for her hard work that I paid a little extra. I don't think Ian will mind and he will be happy that the house is super clean again.

I'm so glad we found someone who cares so much about our family. Jessica really goes the extra mile when taking care of Bella and in all that she does. For a college student, she works REALLY hard. I love the fact that I can leave Bella with her and know and that Bella is in good hands. I actually Googled "babysitter appreciation day" and it's actually in May, and we will definitely be celebrating it this year.

Love always,
Ian, Kim, Bella & Baby #2

Monday, March 5, 2012

Is it March 15th yet?

Several times a year cause me to be, what I affectionately refer to as a a tax widow. Public accounting is a bear and at times, busy season can be almost unbearable. I essentially lose my husband to endless amounts of tax returns and play second fiddle to his clients. I take all of this in stride because the firm that Ian works for is wonderful and Ian is very much appreciated by the partners he works for and his colleagues. The late nights and weekends suck, but fortunately things will return to a state of normalcy... after March 15th. If he worked for a law firm, the workload would always be like this, so I'm thankful that Ian is both a CPA and an attorney because he can do it all!

While Ian was working on Saturday (it never ends) a friend posted a video on Facebook that circulated last year. I watched the video again and emailed the video to Ian so that he'd get a chuckle. He's obviously already seen the video, but I figured we could both use a little laughter. I will share the video and hopefully some of you tax professionals and tax widows will see the humor in it:

Ian was up late working last night and headed into the office bright and early this morning. He arrived home just in time for dinner, play time with Bella and our bath, book and bed routine. Since I'm not supposed to be picking up Bella, this is a HUGE help and I'm so grateful he's able to help out even though he's swamped. He does it all with a smile... and sometimes a sigh. Ian even takes the time to cuddle and chat with me before I fall asleep at night. These quiet moments mean so much to me because I know how busy he is. After our little pillow talk, he returns to his two laptops and dual screen and works until the wee hours of the night. March 15th cannot come soon enough and I cannot wait for our lives to return to normal... err, well somewhat normal. 

Love always,
Ian, Kim, Bella & Baby #2

Sunday, March 4, 2012

Sleepless Sunday

It took me forever to fall asleep last night, even though I was exhausted. I just couldn't get comfortable and I tossed and turned for several hours. I finally fell asleep around midnight and my numerous trips to the bathroom interrupted my sleep, as usual. I figured that with my late bedtime, that I'd be able to sleep in but I was grossly mistaken. I was up at 5am and wide awake. What the hell?!?

I watched a movie and worked on the nursery a bit. It's basically finished but I wanted to rearrange a few of the wall hangings. Before I knew it, it was 7am and everyone else in the house was still asleep. Lucky them. The house was so quiet and peaceful but I could have used the company. Everyone was awake by 8am and we began our vey lazy Sunday.

We had a some rain over night and the weather forecast predicted more rain. We planned accordingly and stayed at home today. Unfortunately, it turned out to be a beautiful day and we missed out on some fun outdoor activities. Bella and Ian decided to get in the hot tub and spent about an hour in there. Bella loves the water but the pool is too cold and takes forever to heat up, so we take her in the hot tub. She loves it! We ate lunch and after lunch, Bella went into the family room to collect her lovies. She made it clear that she was ready for nap time and went down for her nap without making a peep. I love that about her! I joined Bella for an afternoon nap, even though I knew I'd regret it later. But I was exhausted and my body needed the extra sleep. We both slept for 3-hours!

I've reached the point of pregnancy where I am over it. I'm tired of feeling uncomfortable, I'm tired of the insomnia... I'm basically tired of all the unpleasant pregnancy side effects. Too bad I have about 6 more weeks to go. It's going to be a loooooong 6 weeks, that's for sure. Luckily the end result is totally worth it! =)

Well, here's to hoping I get some sleep tonight and can be well rested for the week. Grandma Ruth is coming over tomorrow and we have a couple of play dates scheduled this week. It's still not our typical busy week, but we're getting there and I'm still trying to take it easy.

Love always,
Ian, Kim, Bella and Baby #2

Saturday, March 3, 2012

An early birthday present for Bella

Isn't this swing set awesome? It's definitely cooler than the swing set I had as a child, although I did have a pretty sweet swing set. This is the swing set we purchased today for Bella and baby #2 from Woodplay of Tampa Bay. We modified the design a little in order for it to fit in our backyard, but we only eliminated the rock wall and have two swings instead of three. These small modifications make this swing the perfect size for our backyard and we can't wait to have it installed.

We have been shopping around for swing sets and after careful consideration, we decided to go with a local company with customized designs. Woodplay of Tampa Bay is located near Citrus Park and they have a really cool set up. There are tons of swing sets to try out and even trampolines to jump on. Bella had a blast playing while Grandma Ruth and I designed and ordered our swing set. I think this is one of those things you get what you pay for... because the costs quickly added up but the swing set comes with delivery, installation and a 10-year warranty. We also purchased two toddler swings so that Bella, baby #2 and their friends could safely swing until they're big enough for the real swings.

The swing set should be ordered, delivered and installed by late April, which is totally fine with me. Usually it takes takes only 2-weeks but the swig set we ordered is a new design so it will take a little longer to order from the manufacturer. This is a birthday present anyway, so Bella will have to practice her patience and wait for it until after her actual birthday.

We can't wait to have our new swing set installed and we especially can't wait to play on it! Bella has been talking about swings and slides ever since we left the place so she is obviously very excited! In the meantime, we will wait patiently for the swing set to arrive. Happy early birthday to Bella!

Friday, March 2, 2012

Good news!

While Ian was taking Bella to Grandma Ruth's for the day, the good news just seemed to start pouring in!

Ian's client lap top went on the fritz on Tuesday and he's been without it for a few days. Luckily the client had someone local to repair it and he called to let Ian know he could pick it up this morning. The lap top was being repaired near the airport, so when he received the call, he was already on the Veteran's Expressway, heading in that direction. It saved him at least an hour out of his busy day and he was quite thankful of that.

I had my 33-week OB appointment this morning and I also received good news. I am no longer on modified bed rest! Woo-hoo! The nurse practitioner assured me that the OB who prescribed it and the hospital were being overly cautious. This was music to my ears! She did say that I need to continue to take it easy and limit how much I'm picking up Bella. Contractions off and on during the last trimester are completely normal and if contractions start, I need to empty my bladder, lay down and drink plenty of water. This good news means Bella and I will no longer be homebound during the week... yay! Obviously I won't be running any marathons or jumping on a trampoline any time soon, but I'm sure if I'm feeling well enough to take Bella out, then that would be perfectly alright.

The nurse practitioner and I also discussed the size of baby #2. I shared with her my concerns about delivering a 10-pound baby and the fact Bella was born 2-weeks early and weighed over 8-pounds. She said she would look over the u/s results from last week and share my concerns with the OB. She didn't want to commit to any course of action, which is fine by me, I just wanted to let them know just how big this baby could be. When she reviewed the u/s report from the perinatologist, she said, "Oh, she's only in the 57th percentile overall." ONLY?!? All of the measurements, except for one had her 2-3 weeks ahead. I really don't want to be induced, but I also really don't want to deliver a 10-pound baby. If my labor and delivery could go exactly it did with Bella's birth, I'd be a very happy mama. I hope this baby decides she is ready, any time after 37-weeks, and decides to come before she gets too big. I'm glad the OB will be keeping an eye on this and when the time comes, we'll have a plan in place.

I finished my afternoon with a wonderful prenatal massage. I have been experiencing some pain in my lower back and shoulders, so this massage was definitely needed. During the massage, I nearly forget I was 33-weeks pregnant and I left the massage feeling like a new woman. It's amazing what a good massage can do! We rounded off the evening with a mini-date night. Ian and I went to dinner at the Italian Kitchen and had one of the best meals ever. We even ordered dessert (surprise, surprise) and split it like two civilized adults. With the exception of Ian spilling his entire glass of water all over me, it was a really nice date. We discussed what we'd like to do with Bella over the next few weeks to ensure we spend quality time with her before baby #2 arrives. We also discussed what we were most looking forward to when baby #2 arrives. Ian said he's looking forward to seeing the differences between our two children, which I quickly interjected and said, "I hope not much because Bella has been close to perfect and she's made this really easy for us." I said I'm looking forward to seeing the girls interact and form a bond. We both agreed that we're looking forward to seeing what baby #2 will look like (I'm sure she will look like her father and sister) and discovering her little personality. Aww, just thinking about all this makes me very eagerly to meet her!

Our weekend will consist of work for Ian and a few projects around the house for me. I need to hang all of the wall decor in baby #2's room this weekend and finally complete the nursery project. Everything has turned out beautifully thus far and I can't wait to make the big reveal! We will pick Bella up from Grandma Ruth's tomorrow afternoon after her nap. We're going to a local place that builds customized swing sets with the hope of finding the perfect swing set for our backyard. Bella is going to be so excited to see the swings and slides, but just wait until she finds out she may be getting one in her own backyard soon! Speaking of which, I need to go take better measurements tomorrow so that we know how much space we are working with. In the meantime, Ian and I will continue our mini-date night with our DVR and a movie. I suggested we do this from the comfort of our bed because I can't seem to get comfortable anywhere else these days. Oh the joys of the last trimester of pregnancy!!! Goodnight y'all.

Love always,
Ian, Kim, Bella & Baby #2

Thursday, March 1, 2012


The past two weeks have been about one thing: survival. We have managed to make it through another week and everyone is alive and well.

For the past two days I have been flying solo during the day. As a stay-at-home-mom (SAHM) this is the norm but when you're a SAHM on bed rest, it's quite an accomplishment. Bella has been very well behaved for a child who has been spending more time than usual at home and hasn't seen her little friends since last week. She plays well at home (for the most part) and we manage to dig new toys out to spice things up. For a child who is used to being out and about during the week, this has been an adjustment for her. We haven't been able to make it to the zoo, aquarium, Busch Gardens or any where fun. Hopefully I'll receive good news from the OB tomorrow and we can get back to our normal routine.

Bella played outside at her sand and water table for almost 2-hours this morning! It was awesome! I was able to sit on the lanai (in a chair) and watch her play. She was soaking wet and covered in sand but it was well worth the mess. I gave her a bath afterwards and she spent another 30 minutes splashing around in the bathtub. We finished up the morning with some more play time and lunch. Thankfully Bella asked to go down for a nap around 12:30pm and I gladly fulfilled her request. I accidentally fell asleep while watching a movie (oops) and I took an almost 2-hour nap. Bella took an almost 4-hour nap herself. We woke up feeling refreshed and ready to play before Ian returned home from work.

Busy season is well under way and Ian is working like a mad man. He didn't make it home in time to eat dinner with us but did make it home in time to help put Bella to bed. We miss daddy but understand that he has to work... a lot. It's a trade off but it allows us to have a pretty great life. Ahh, such is the life of a tax widow.

Bella is going to Grandma Ruth's tomorrow until Saturday afternoon . It'll be a nice little break and I could certainly use some time to myself. The past two days have been exhausting. And it will be nice to not schlep Bella to the OB's office with me tomorrow. Hopefully today's nap doesn't interfere with my sleep tonight because I could use a good night's sleep for sure. Nighty night y'all!

Love always,
Ian, Kim, Bella & Baby #2