Friday, July 15, 2011

Natural pregnancy week by week

Hello you all!

How are you? I know I promised you some updates on the 'breaking news'!

So I had my first prenatal doctor's visit.
Took me half a hour to fill up some paperwork, thank God I went early!
My appointment was for 9:00 am and I was at the office by 8:30! It took so much time to answer all the health history questions etc...

                                                                  The lab works
So I did the usual urine test, (right on time...)
Weight in: 5 lbs gain!
Blood pressure test, my BP was perfect!
Did the blood work, (She took like 5-6 tubes )
Got the physical and went ahead and got a Pap smear done,  heard the baby's heartbeat yeaah..(it sounds like a galloping horse)!

The urine test came first
I then waited a few minutes to get them to weight me and take my BP.

                                         Prenatal visit and a woman's right to pretty shoes...
When I first got called the first thing the nurse asked was how to pronounce my name, the second thing she said was " I love your shoes"! I thanked her and told her that I have 3 pairs of these shoes! ( I know it's crazy but I just love them.) She explained to me about the urine test and then left. I waited a few minutes before moving on to the rest of the tests that my visit entitled!
When a different nurse called me to take my weight,her first comment was about my shoes, the nurse taking my Blood Pressure asked where I was from and she kept checking out my shoes and complimented them, then a third nurse stepped in and noticed my shoes right away and complimented them and commented that they match well my dress and even my nail polish!

We don't expect a fashion revue when at a doctor's office but I must tell you it felt good to get these compliments! When you are starting to feel frustrated, challenged and limited with your wardrobe comments like those help a whole lot! Like I told them I have three pairs of those shoes, because, as one of them assumed, they are very comfortable in addition to being very pretty! I love pretty things and I love comfort! I am not the type of girl you will catch in pretty shoes that cause a lot of pain!
(I will add a picture of the shoes later on! I am writing in a rush!)

Picture update
Prenatal doctor's visit!

After my time with these fashion critics/nurses I waited in a private room (pictured above)...I waited like 15-20 mns before I was seen by the midwife. Thank God I had my crosswords puzzles book with me or I would have lost patience like a fly trapped in a small space. I never go anywhere without a book in my purse and my puzzles book have kept me sane at many occasions when my patience was running low!

                                                              Pregnancy and exercises
The midwife came in. The first thing we did was go over my paperwork. She had some questions naturally! She was curious about the fact that I do work out more than 3 times per week. (The paperwork does require to specify how often you work out).
She asked me what kind of exercises I do and I explained that I normally run on the treadmill but haven't done it in the past 3 weeks. I still walk one hour most days, I stretch daily for at least 20 minutes. I did not care to tell her that I do squats and lunges every other days.
 She asked if I plan on working out as the pregnancy progresses, my answer " Of course! Exercising and staying healthy is more important now" I said! I went on to say that I am very much aware that it's thanks to exercising that I have had some healthy pregnancies in the past and some prompt recoveries!
She was also interested in the kind of supplements I take, (the paperwork inquires about medication, supplements etc) I am not under medication, haven't been since the pain killers of my last C-section!
                                                               Details about my supplements
The midwife was curious about my supplements and I explained that they do include the prenatal vitamins I started taking recently and they also include the following:  B12, Folic Acid, Fish oil, and Magnesium. I have been taking all these supplements daily or weekly for months now and I continue to take them in spite of the fact that some of them (B12 and Folic Acid) are present in the prenatal vitamins that I now take.
Magnesium keeps you regular and believe me I am seriously sticking to it because pregnancy causes constipation and constipation is BAD if you plan on being very healthy! The midwife seemed surprised that I knew the benefits of magnesium as a supplement to prevent constipation.
 B12 is already present in the prenatal vitamin but I still take that supplement because B12 is the 'energy vitamin' and I need energy now more than ever!  Please check the following article for more info about the importance pf vitamin B12

 Folic Acid is the most important vitamin during pregnancy, as a matter of fact it's very important even before pregancy!

After the questions and answers session and sharing some general info, I got a physical and I got to hear the sound of the baby...Aw www so sweet!
I told my midwife that my hubby and children would love to listen to it so after I got dressed a nurse gathered them from the lobby and we crammed that small room while I laid once again for a sonogram! It was great to share this with all my children but the best was saved for last!

                                                       Ultrasound and more shoes talks
I got my blood work done while waiting on the ultrasound to determine how far along I am in my pregnancy! I was so glad to get the ultrasound done because they were not sure that they could fit me in in the schedule since they were only working half day today! I said a little prayer on the subject that God graciously answered!
After getting all of us set up in the ultrasound room, I was about to lean back on the bed when the lady doing my ultrasound said " Oh you are the lady with the pretty shoes!" It caught me off guard...

Picture update
Here are my favorite shoes!
I was surprised that words have gotten around about my shoes. My hubby made a comment on the way home that only us women would do things like that, check people from head to toes and talk about them "and their shoes" (lol).

                                                              Special moments
Having my children watch the ultrasound was a special moment! They had tons of questions, made their smart comments about their little sibling in my tummy and found that it was the best part of the visit! I agree with them! I feel so grateful for this blessing! It's so amazing to be able to see a baby at such an early stage and it's awesome to be 'chosen' to carry a new life! I have always respected the gift of 'fertility' because I am so aware of others 'misfortunes and I spend so much time praying in secret for others less fortunate, to experience that gift!

                                                             Still guessing how far along I am
So... we had the ultrasound and my hubby was surprised to be wrong in his estimate!
He thought I was just 8 weeks. I have been telling him how many weeks I thought I was, but he acted like he knows my body better than me, (making a face).
 It turns out that my prediction were pretty close, the ultrasound revealed that I am actually at...umm let's make you wait...

       I will give you some hints
  • in 2 more weeks I should be able to feel the baby move,
  •  in 7 weeks we will know the sex of the baby
      So how many weeks am I?

Picture update:  me after my prenatal visit

Got to rush out of here, will be back with pictures and will update this post sometimes tonight or tomorrow! Have a great week-end and thanks to you all for your love!

To any expecting woman reading this, I wish you too a Happy Pregnancy!
Okay got to go, hubby is ruuushing me!

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Breaking News!Hun I got some news for you!

Hello readers!
I hope all is well with you as I write this update!
If you are like most Followers you have probably noticed that I have written less frequently last month and the month before than I did months ago! Yes, I went from like 12-13 articles a month to 6 then! No I am not slacking...Something happened and it slowed me down a little...

Some friends and readers have emailed me on facebook and made the observation that they have noticed that I was writing less...I did not want to break the news for a while because it even took me a while to realize what was going on...what was going on in my body!

I was feeling constantly tired and my best friend in New jersey was intrigued that someone like me would
 " suddenly" be lacking energy and be so tired!
She detected that something serious must be going with me...humm...she then started inquiring about my health, asking quite frequently and with insistence if I was pregnant! " Noooo" I kept saying!!!

Knowing me to be energetic and healthy her quick and only diagnosis of the situation was that I was suffering from a pregnancy!

Diagnosis I strongly rejected and denied, not just to her but to myself as well...until she finally sent me a text one day asking me to " just take a pregancy test and we will know"...

Okay...So I did take the test...

and it was   POSITIVE!!!!

OMG I am pregnant! I am pregnant!

I got to tell you the truth I was not jumping up and down on this one!

My last child is 4 and pregnancy means things like...
"Gosh got to put aside all those summer capris I finally squeezed myself in with much comfort! Oh nooo the sleepless nights feeding a baby...Lord have mercy I will have to change some stinky diapers again, and another child to potty train! For real after training my last child and then my dog I was hoping to retire from potty training! I don't want to potty train EVER AGAIN ( sounding like a child with a temper tantrum). What's more I will have to carry around those obnoxious car seats! I don't like carrying around car seats and strollers( In a pouting voice)  ...

Well... that was my internal dialogue the days I was in denial, the night I found out that I was indeed pregnant and do I have this dialogue once in a while!

Thankfully...yes...thankfully my internal dialogue has improved ! I am more and more excited! Now I think more about the fact that  I will once again experience a baby moving in my belly, seriously that's one of the most beautiful thing about pregnancy! Oh and I will have a new decorating project, how fun! Oh my I will get another child to hold against my chest till we fall asleep and another baby to cuddle and have goofy talks with! There will be cute irresistible little hands to hold and little feet to kiss!!! Babies' feet are so cute! (You all know that pass a certain age, feet are not always kissable material)!
I am so grateful that I will marvel once again at the beauty and mystery of life...

 So yes friends, my health goals, my wardrobe and my living spaces have to be totally redesigned and some of my short and long term plans as well! But it's okay, I am okay!!!  A baby is quite a beautiful change ...umm okay I just had to play referee between my two boys...what was I saying...beautiful? Umm... might have to rethink that statement at the moment...

But you know what? I did not plan this pregnancy like I did my other ones, so since it's here, and it was a total surprise I might as well make the most of it and enjoy it! Don't you think? Yes, I plan on enjoying this special blessing and I will take you and other " kindred spirits" along this journey...journey of a new life...
So that's the news...friends, I am pregnant...

Oh if you want to know how far along I am...All I can say is that....I don't even know!!!
Ha ha ha! My first doctor's visit is tomorrow...So you have to return for the updates....

If you like guessing games you can try far along do you think I am?

pregnancy (belly) picture


Monday, July 11, 2011

Simple ways to an Eco friendly and Green lifestyle!

Summer time makes it so easy to live eco-friendly! So if you are considering going Green this summer here are simple ways to get yourself rolling in the righ direction!
#1 Get moving and enjoy the great outdoors.
Between walking, swimming, riding a bike  etc, we should now have more good reasons to enjoy being outdoors and leave the confinement of our homes. Honestly with summer now here, there are fewer excuses to be lazy and sit around doing nothing! So get out and try new things, learn how to swim, join a team, or simply go on walks around some familiar neighborhoods and see what’s new out there!

Yesterday I went on a walk with my family in an area that’s very familiar to me and I was surprised to see some things that I haven’t noticed before. One was the sculpture above. And the following things....

I go to the TN Aquarium and rivefront quite often and yet those were new to me...

Interesting art! Don't you think?

Aren't stairs a real eco-friendly way to exercise? I have never been up those stairs before and it led to a dead end with a garden full of daililies blooms

After descending the stairs I noticed something interesting on the wall...something I just realized ( while selecting pictures for this post) is visible on the left handside of the picture below. Do you see these squares on the left?
There were exactly 12 squares like the  two below. Each square depicted something different.
Truly my biggest surprise was this collection of engraved art. My husband and I  had never noticed them before and we were totally baffled because we have been to the Tennessee Aquarium area so many times..Isn't it weird how things can be there in front of us and we just never 'see them'? I will share all the engraved art that I photographed  in a future article so if you are curious to see what was engraved make sure to come back soon!
Cherokee sculpture @ the Tennessee Aquarium

Cherokee sculpture @ The Tennessee Aquarium
See, walking and being outdoors is a pleasant way to live eco friendly, so many beautiful things surround us! This spot was beautiful and going up was truly a work-out in disguise!

Below is someone obviously enjoying the weather who crossed our path on the glass bridge!

I have found that the best time to be outdoors is early in the day or in the later part of the afternoon. Our Sunday family walk was in the later part of the day and feeling some breeze was a great relief from the scorching heat we felt earlier in the afternoon. With the sun setting after 9 pm it gives plenty of time to enjoy being outside without burning up!

For more images on the beautiful downtown Chattanooga check  and
#2 Grow a garden and eat more organic homegrown and healthy produces.
With summer time also comes the opportunity to grow a kitchen garden and enjoy some organic homegrown produces. One of my neighbors grows some corn, okra and squash amongst other things. Here is his lush and fruitful kitchen garden!

Kitchen garden
Personally, I stuck to container gardening because it’s low maintenance and less commitment! I have a wide selection of herbs from oregano, to basil and rosemary just to name a few. Herbs are for me a must have, they smell so good and the aroma they bring to home cooked meals is irresistible!

Oregano and Stevia in Containers.

Kitchen garden: basil

I am also growing some produces that we are all watching grow and enjoying with great excitement such as tomatoes, chili peppers, Green peppers, Cucumbers, blueberries etc.

For related articles please read and enter the benefits of gardening in the search box for more articles on gardening!

My tomatoes are bringing me much satisfaction.  
Kitchen garden: tomatoes

Kitchen garden: container tomatoes plant

and the Green peppers are finally starting to show some promises.

Container kitchen garden:Green peppers
I have yet to enjoy some cucumbers but judging by the numerous yellow flowers it’s just a matter of time.

Kitchen garden: Cucumber

#3 Collect Rain water.


Collecting rain water is an amusing project for children and it’s such a simple thing. Considering that the cost of a rain barrel or the space for one might discourage some I think the use of small buckets or even cooking bowls is a simple solution to those who want to do it but have limited space or a limited budget!

I have not yet invested in a big rain barrel but instead I am making use of small buckets that I found at a Dollar Store(for just $1.00). After a rain I simply collect the water to water my container plants, outdoors as well as indoor plants benefit better from this natural water than they do from tap water.
Did you know that rain water is even recommended for shampooing our hair as it's said to be better on natural hair than tap water is!

#4 Dry things outdoors and give the drying machine a break!
Another Eco friendly gift from the summer time is the opportunity to maximize nature’s gift of free solar heat and limit our use of the dryer and dry things outdoors as much as possible. If you lack the space or privacy for a clothing line you could still make use of folding racks for small items like wash clothes, kitchen towels, baby items, or socks etc.
Folding rack

Folding rack: eco friendly living

Folding racks fit easily on a small balcony or on a deck and during the winter I still use them for sweaters and other delicate items by placing them near a vent or in a very small room like a ½ bath where the heat can speed the drying process overnight!
In hanging clothes outdoors I would not suggest hanging your bras and lingerie for all to see unless you have a privacy fence and very few visitors! If you live in an apartment, in the USA in particular where people are less adapted to eco-living as they are in Europe, please do not hang clothes on the railing of your balcony because it’s 'tacky' and the Leasing/ Management office might fuss about it!

#5 Hydrate and recycle.

Hydrate!!! Drink plenty of water!!!
The hot weather forces us to hydrate more frequently and with that we see the increase of bottled water or bottled drinks which we can and should recycle diligently!
Recycle very diligently!

 Talking of getting hydrate, please keep water at the top of your list because sodas will actually dehydrate you.
A better alternative to commercial bottled water would be to add a filter to your faucet or purchase a water filtration system and get your own carry on bottle.

Water bottles
#6 Have a yard sale or shop at one!
Having a yard sale is a great way to turn ' your trash' into someone else's treasure and vice versa.
Well, it's a good concept but when having a yard sale please please please do not sell broken items, clothes with stains or holes, or plain stinky and dirty things. You will be surprised how many people try to make a bargain out of cigarrettes stinking items or dirty things. I think it's rude and inconsiderate and just plain old nasty to sell things that are stinky and/or dirty! I CAN NOT STAND anything that's stinky and dirty. I love a good bargain but I am still picky when it comes to yard sales. I do not buy clothing at yard sale. My desire to live Eco friendly obviously has its limits. Clothing and shoes are the kind of things I don’t believe in buying at second hand stores, thrift stores etc but I enjoy yard sales and Craigslist when it comes to purchasing knick-knacks like baskets, vases, books in good condition, children’s toys, and electronics like TV DVD’s combo that are great for kids ‘playrooms etc.  

You can see above pictures of my last yard sales purchases (back in May 2011). A neighbor was getting set up for a yard sale while I was up early walking in the neighborhood! I have wanted this book from Kevin Trudeau "More Natural Cures Revealed" and already had  in paperbacks " Natural Cures "they" don't want you to know about". Paying just $1 per book is much better than regular price plus tax, don't you think?
One last word of advice, never go shopping (@ yard sales, thrift store...) without a bottle of desinfectant lysol and never go anywhere without Hand sanitizer. (Smiles) For real!!!!
 Even though I would deny having bacteriaphobia or bacilliphobia (grinning ), I strongly believe in desinfecting and sanitizing things. When I buy things from yard sales or second hands places,  I make sure to desinfect and wash them as soon as I get home! I don't even wear brand new clothes from department stores until I wash them (my theory with that is that there are packaging chemicals on them and many people have touched that item before I purchased it) . So when it comes to yard sales I take certain precautions by spraying everything, even books, with Lysol, and everything ,except for books, get washed with soap water and vinegar. Let's just say that I do not believe in recycling people's germs or any kind of germs for the matter! More people need to make it a priority to washing their hands and the things they come in contact with as that would keep us all in much better health.

That's all for my simple ways to live an eco friendly life! As you can see there are simple ways to live an eco-friendly life and be good to yourself and to the environment without being a Green fanatic!

              Happy Eco friendly & Green living and tell us what you think!

Is there anything here that you already do often or plan on starting? What are your personal suggestions to an eco-friendly lifestyle?