Introducing….

Miss Parker Paisley!

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Born: August 6th at 11:38 AM

4 lbs 11 oz and 17 3/4″ Long

Mom and baby are back home and both are doing wonderful!!!

I will post more pics along with the birth story over the next few days, but wanted to first introduce you to our precious little miracle who has quickly stolen our heart. We are so head over heels in love with our little peanut!!!

It’s Baby Time!

I am currently 35 wks 6 days and today is the day that we get to meet our sweet baby girl! I can’t even believe this day has finally arrived. We are so excited and so incredibly nervous at the same time! I just want everything to go perfect with the c-section and have a healthy and happy baby girl!!! Hospital check in is at 9 am and the c-section is scheduled for 11 am. If you get a chance, send up an extra thought and prayer today that everything will go just as planned!

Can’t wait to hold, kiss, and post pics of our precious daughter whom has already stolen our hearts!!!

33 Weeks!

33 weeks

I am desperately trying to get caught up on weekly updates. Sorry for the slackerness! Here is what is going on at 33 weeks:

How your baby’s growing:

This week your baby weighs a little over 4 pounds and has passed the 17-inch mark (about the size of a pineapple). He’s rapidly losing that wrinkled, alien look and his skeleton is hardening. The bones in his skull aren’t fused together, which allows them to move and slightly overlap, thus making it easier for him to fit through the birth canal. (The pressure on the head during birth is so intense that many babies are born with a conehead-like appearance.) These bones don’t entirely fuse until early adulthood, so they can grow as his brain and other tissue expands during infancy and childhood.

How your life’s changing:

As your baby fills out even more of your belly, lots of things might start to change: Whereas before you were sashaying, you may find yourself waddling. Finding an easy position to sit in — let alone sleep — is becoming more of a challenge. And bumping into chairs and counters is par for the course. You may be feeling some achiness and even numbness in your fingers, wrists, and hands. Like many other tissues in your body, those in your wrist can retain fluid, which can increase pressure in the carpal tunnel, a bony canal in your wrist. Nerves that run through this “tunnel” may end up pinched, creating numbness; tingling, shooting or burning pain; or a dull ache. Try wearing a splint to stabilize your wrist or propping your arm up with a pillow when you sleep. If your work requires repetitive hand movements (at a keyboard or on an assembly line, for instance), remember to stretch your hands when you take breaks — which should be frequently. Many women are still feeling sexy at this stage — and their partners often agree. You may need to make some adjustments, but for most women, sex during pregnancy is fine right up until their water breaks or their labor starts.

How far along?  33 weeks
Total weight gain:  19 lbs
Maternity clothes? Since I am on bed rest, I have mostly been wearing yoga pants and pj’s around most of the day.
Stretch marks?  No.
Sleep:  Been getting plenty! Bed rest is definitely good for resting!
Best moment this week: A friend of mine went out and picked up some last minute things we needed for baby. I felt so relieved to have that done.
Miss Anything? Yes! Cleaning my house, cooking, shopping, going to church, pretty much everything that doesn’t included being confined to the couch!
Movement:  Lots of constant, daily movement!
Food cravings: Fruit, milk, and peanut butter. I’ve also been eating a high protein diet in order to hopefully pack on the baby pounds before she arrives in a few short weeks. My goal is to get her to 5 pounds by her birth.
Anything making you queasy or sick:  No. 
Gender prediction: Baby girl!
Labor Signs:  A few Braxton Hicks this week.
Symptoms: Round ligament pain, spider veins, varicose veins, shortness of breath, rib pain, back & leg pain (from lying around).
Belly Button in or out?  Pretty flat.
Wedding rings on or off?  Back on this week. After I took it off last week, I was a nervous wreck because I couldn’t find them. I always put them in the same spot when I take them off…in a little glass dish by my sink. Luckily, after lots of persuasion, my hubs took apart the sink and there was my ring. After that, I squeezed that ring back on my swollen fingers. I can’t believe I almost lost it. I would have been devastated!
Happy or Moody most of the time: Happy, bored, excited, and SUPER nervous!
Looking forward to: Meeting baby B on August 6th. Getting closer and closer with each passing day!!!

Maternity & 5 Year Anniversary Photos

I never did maternity photos when I was pregnant with Bella, 12 years ago, so all along I knew that was something I didn’t want to miss out on this time around. When our photographer that shot our engagement and wedding photos 5 years ago contacted me and asked if we wanted to do an Anniversary shoot (we will be celebrating our 5 year wedding Anniversary in August) for an amazing price, I jumped at the opportunity! I guess he is trying to expand his portfolio to include “lifetime memory shots” not just shots of the wedding, but you know, all the special moments and milestones that happen after that. I told him that we were expecting and asked him if we could do some maternity photos mixed in with the 5 year Anniversary shoot. He agreed. I was so excited…the date couldn’t get here fast enough!

Let me just say that he did an amazing job! Just as he did with our wedding photos, I was in awe at how he captured our joy, love, playfulness, and excitement so perfectly. Let me just warn you…there are a TON of pictures! He sent me a CD with close to 400 shots. And those were all good ones too! He had already edited out all the photos where we were picking our nose, closing our eyes, or making funny faces. The 400 on the CD were all great shots. Out of those 400, I picked about 125 that are my favorites. And yep, I am attaching them all here. If you have time, look through them, if not…no worries. I know it’s totally overboard, but when it came to editing them down even more….I was lost.

To view them, go ahead and click on the first picture below. When you do that, it will bring up a slideshow that you will be able to click through. You can also leave comments directly on the pictures. So family and friends…I obviously can’t print out and display all 125 photos in my home, so I need your help! Feel free to comment on your favorites.

32 weeks!

32 weeks

Still trying to get caught up and back on track with these weekly bump pics. I am currently 33 weeks, but here is my update from 32 weeks.

By now, your baby weighs 3 3/4 pounds (about the size of a large jicama) and is about 16.7 inches long, taking up a lot of space in your uterus. You’re gaining about a pound a week and roughly half of that goes right to your baby. In fact, she’ll gain a third to half of her birth weight during the next 7 weeks as she fattens up for survival outside the womb. She now has toenails, fingernails, and real hair (or at least respectable peach fuzz). Her skin is becoming soft and smooth as she plumps up in preparation for birth.

How your life’s changing:

To accommodate you and your baby’s growing needs, your blood volume has increased 40 to 50 percent since you got pregnant. With your uterus pushing up near your diaphragm and crowding your stomach, the consequences may be shortness of breath and heartburn. To help relieve your discomfort, try sleeping propped up with pillows and eating smaller meals more often.

You may have lower-back pain as your pregnancy advances.

Assuming it’s not preterm labor that’s ailing you, you can probably blame your growing uterus and hormonal changes for your aching back. Your expanding uterus shifts your center of gravity and stretches out and weakens your abdominal muscles, changing your posture and putting a strain on your back. Hormonal changes in pregnancy loosen your joints and the ligaments that attach your pelvic bones to your spine. This can make you feel less stable and cause pain when you walk, stand, sit for long periods, roll over in bed, get out of a low chair or the tub, bend, or lift things.

How far along?  32 weeks
Total weight gain:  17.5 lbs
Maternity clothes? Since I am on bed rest, I have mostly been wearing yoga pants and pj’s around most of the day.
Stretch marks?  No.
Sleep:  Been getting so much sleep this week, almost too much. I think my body will go into shock with a newborn when I no longer am getting 10-12 hours of sleep a night.
Best moment this week: We got our c-section date scheduled, for 8/6 (the day before my son’s birthday – I will be 35 wks 6 days). It was a nice surprise since I thought they wouldn’t le me go past 35 weeks. Instead, they scheduled it a day before I turn 36 weeks. Woo Hoo! Baby girls gets to cook for a whole 6 days more!!! I also found out that my OB who I LOVE and has been through everything with me (miscarriages, surgeries, infertility) will be the one delivering us! And if you know anything about Kaiser, this is hardly ever the case, and a true blessing! You usually just get whatever MD is on call that day for the delivery. My awesome OB put in a special request in order to be the one who delivers for us. It feels good to have a plan!
Miss Anything? Yes! Cleaning my house, cooking, shopping, pretty much everything that doesn’t included being confined to the couch!
Movement:  Lots of constant, daily movement!
Food cravings: I can’t get enough fruit this entire pregnancy…but it’s been a really strong craving this week. Maybe because it’s been so hot and it is super easy to snack on while lying on the couch. I’ve also been eating a high protein diet in order to hopefully pack on the baby pounds before she arrives in a few short weeks. My goal is to get her to 5 pounds by her birth.
Anything making you queasy or sick:  No. 
Gender prediction: Baby girl!
Labor Signs:  Nope.
Symptoms: Round ligament pain, spider veins, varicose veins, shortness of breath, rib pain, back & leg pain (from lying around).
Belly Button in or out?  Pretty flat.
Wedding rings on or off?  Officially off this week. The hot weather and inactivity has me retaining a bit of water now.
Happy or Moody most of the time: Happy, bored, excited, and SUPER nervous!
Looking forward to: NST appt on Monday. They will do a fluid check at this appt, so I will get to see baby girl on the big screen :-)

31 weeks!

31 weeks

Trying to get caught up on my weekly bump pics. Here is what is going on during week 31!

This week, your baby measures over 16 inches long. He weighs about 3 1/3 pounds (about the size of a coconut) and is heading into a growth spurt. He can turn his head from side to side, and his arms, legs, and body are beginning to plump out as needed fat accumulates underneath his skin. He’s probably moving a lot, too, so you may have trouble sleeping because your baby’s kicks and somersaults keep you up. Take comfort: All this moving is a sign that your baby is active and healthy.

Have you noticed the muscles in your uterus tightening now and then? Many women feel these random contractions — called Braxton Hicks contractions — in the second half of pregnancy. Often lasting about 30 seconds, they’re irregular, and at this point, they should be infrequent and painless. Frequent contractions, on the other hand — even those that don’t hurt — may be a sign of preterm labor. Call your practitioner immediately if you have more than four contractions in an hour or any other signs of preterm labor: an increase in vaginal discharge or a change in the type of discharge (if it becomes watery, mucus-like, or bloody — even if it’s pink or just tinged with blood); abdominal pain or menstrual-like cramping; an increase in pressure in the pelvic area; or low back pain, especially if you didn’t have it before.

You may have noticed some leaking of colostrum, or “premilk,” from your breasts lately. If so, try tucking some nursing pads into your bra to protect your clothes. (And if not, it’s certainly nothing to worry about; your breasts are making colostrum all the same, even if you don’t see any.) If your current bra is too snug, you might also want to pick up a nursing bra. Choose a nursing bra at least one cup size bigger than you need now. When your milk comes in you’ll be grateful for that extra room!

How far along?  31 weeks
Total weight gain:  17 lbs. No weight gain this week :-(
Maternity clothes? Since I am on bed rest, I have mostly been wearing yoga pants and pj’s around most of the day.
Stretch marks?  No.
Sleep:  Been getting so much sleep this week. Bed rest will do that to you!
Best moment this week: My friend ran out and picked me up a few preemie outfits, some breast pads, a bottle cleaner, and a thermometer, which were a few of the last things on my list. I finally feel totally prepared for baby girl!
Miss Anything? Yes! Cleaning my house, cooking, shopping, pretty much everything that doesn’t included being confined to the couch!
Movement:  Lots of constant, daily movement!
Food cravings: Pizza has really been hitting he spot this week.
Anything making you queasy or sick:  No. 
Gender prediction: Baby girl!
Labor Signs:  Nope.
Symptoms: Round ligament pain, spider veins, varicose veins, shortness of breath, rib pain.
Belly Button in or out?  Pretty flat.
Wedding rings on or off?  On, but with this hot weather, they are getting tighter!
Happy or Moody most of the time: So happy (but feeling nervous and anxious as well)!
Looking forward to: NST appt on Monday. They will do a fluid check at this appt, so I will get to see baby girl on the big screen :-)

30 weeks!

30 weeks B&W

I am currently 31 weeks, but fell a little behind on my weekly posts…so here is what was going on in week 30:

Your baby’s about 15.7 inches long now and weighs almost 3 pounds (about the size of a large cabbage). A pint and a half of amniotic fluid surrounds her, but that volume will shrink as she gets bigger and takes up more room in your uterus. Her eyesight continues to develop, though it’s not very keen; even after she’s born, she’ll keep her eyes closed for a good part of the day. When she does open them, she’ll respond to changes in light but will have 20/400 vision — which means she can only make out objects a few inches from her face. (Normal adult vision is 20/20.)

You may be feeling a little tired these days, especially if you’re having trouble sleeping. You might also feel clumsier than normal, which is perfectly understandable. Not only are you heavier, but the concentration of weight in your pregnant belly causes a shift in your center of gravity. Plus, thanks to hormonal changes, your ligaments are more lax, so your joints are looser, which may also contribute to your balance being a bit off.
Also, this relaxation of your ligaments can actually cause your feet to spread permanently, so you may have to invest in some new shoes in a bigger size. Remember those mood swings you had earlier in pregnancy? The combination of uncomfortable symptoms and hormonal changes can result in a return of those emotional ups and downs. It’s normal to worry about what your labor will be like or whether you’ll be a good parent. But if you can’t shake the blues or feel increasingly irritable or agitated, talk to your doctor or midwife. You may be among the 1 in 10 expectant women who battle depression during pregnancy. Also let your caregiver know if you’re frequently nervous or anxious.

How far along?  30 weeks
Total weight gain:  17 lbs. Doing a little better on the weight gain. Goal is to gain 1 lb per week from here on out.
Maternity clothes? I am loving how comfortable maternity is (especially maternity jeans) but still wearing lots of normal clothes, like sundresses, as well. 
Stretch marks?  Nope.
Sleep:  Been sleeping great this week!
Best moment this week: Seeing baby girl at our ultrasound.
Miss Anything? Nope! 
Movement:  Lots of constant, daily movement!
Food cravings:  I still can’t get enough fruit and milk! Also loving oreos dipped in my milk, of course :-)
Anything making you queasy or sick:  No. 
Gender prediction: Baby girl!
Labor Signs:  Nope.
Symptoms: Round ligament pain, spider veins, varicose veins, a little ankle/foot swelling in the evenings, shortness of breath.
Belly Button in or out?  In…but almost flat :-)
Wedding rings on or off?  On. 
Happy or Moody most of the time: So happy (but feeling nervous and anxious as well)!
Looking forward to: Seeing baby girl again in 2 weeks at our next ultrasound.

Nursery Reveal

Well, we finally finished baby girl’s nursery…and I am in LOVE. I am so thankful and so grateful that I had family come into town to help, because honestly, I couldn’t have done it without them! My mom, mom’s boyfriend Greg, Aunt Tammy and Uncle Mark were instrumental in getting this room transformed and taking my vision and turning it into reality. And it couldn’t have been better timing either! We finished the nursery on Tuesday and I was put on bed rest on Wednesday. Good thing I had one last hurrah with my ladder and paint brush before the doc said no more!

Here are a few before pics and in progress pics of the room. I don’t have any truly great before pics, but just imagine a big cream box of a room. That’s pretty much how it looked:

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Daddy removing the baseboards

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Mommy learning how to “mud” the walls.

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Big brother Ryan “mudding” the walls.

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Daddy sanding the walls.

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Mommy learning how to use a nail gun for the first time.

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And here are pics of the final product. I am pretty sure this is my favorite room in the whole house now!

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Where you will rest your pretty head each night.

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Scripture above your crib.

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The rocking chair where I will be rocking my sweet baby girl to sleep each night.

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These are our weekly bump photos displayed over the closet.

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Changing station where I will be changing LOTS of diapers.

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Family pics from our gender reveal photo shoot where we found out you were a GIRL! We are blowing pink glitter towards the camera. What a special day!!!

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These will be your newborn photo shoot outfits. Pretty much the cutest threads ever!

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Changing table, dresser, and itty bitty adorable shoes!

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Your gorgeous chandelier that casts amazing shadows on the ceiling and walls (especially at night).

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Just some of your adorable clothes!

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Yep…pretty sure I am going to move into this room. It’s just how I pictured it…actually, even better. And I had a blast decorating it with the help of family! I wanted it to be a space fit for a princess where she knew just how special she is and how much we hoped, prayed, waited for, and loved her…even before she was here. When my older daughter Bella was born, I lived in a small one bedroom condo, so never really got the chance to truly decorate a nursery, since we were sharing a room and all. This is what I always pictured for her. So glad I got another chance and we are in a house and a position to finally make this dream a reality. Baby girl, I hope you love your new room as much as we do!!! Can’t wait to spend time with you in there in a little over a month!!!

Vasa Previa Update and Bed Rest

Update on baby girl and the Vasa Previa:

The good news – At 30 weeks, she weighs approximately 3 lbs 2 oz (in the 40th percentile) and is growing right on track. Everything looked great. Immediately following my ultrasound with the perinatologist, he sent me across the hall to perform a NST (non-stress test). This is an hour long test where they hook you up to a monitor that logs the baby’s heart rate. They also give you a hand held button where you push the button each time she kicks or you feel movement. What they are looking for is an increases heart rate with movement. They call these “accelerations”. Resting, baby b’s heart rate was 140. When she started getting active and moving around, her heart rate would increase to 160. The RN said this was awesome and they typically don’t see 20 point swings in acceleration until the baby is at least 32 weeks (at 30 weeks, they were looking for at least an acceleration of 10 bpm). The RN was calling her a “show off” and “over-achiever”. That’s my girl!

The bad news -The Vasa Previa, meaning the blood vessels covering my cervix haven’t moved . That means I am on bed rest starting today (anyone have any tips on staying sane during bed rest?), will have 3 NST ( non-stess test) appts per week for monitoring (fun since the hospital is 45 min away), a weekly appt with the perinatologist to check on growth, and a hospital bed rest at any time if anything looks off. I feel like I am walking on egg shells (when I do get up to walk a short distance) and like any move I make could jar something loose. I honestly feel like a ticking time bomb waiting to go off. Such a scary thought to have 24 hours a day. I asked in depth about hospital bed rest, mainly because everything I have read about this condition states that I should be on hospital bed rest starting at 28 or at the latest, 32 weeks. I asked him if that was the standard protocol, and if it was, how come he wasn’t recommending that. He said that eventually, that may be what happens, but for now, home bed rest was okay since the baby still looked and was growing great. He said that this condition is so rare, that there haven’t been any studies done that say whether hospital bed rest vs home bed rest makes a difference and that in the 3,000 patients he sees a year, he gets about one of these cases every other year. That’s 1 in 6,000 patients of his. Lucky me, huh?! So the plan right now is home bed rest for now, with a possible hospital bed rest in the near future, and 3-4 appt per week for monitoring. Then, if everything goes perfect at all the appts and she is looking and growing great, and not putting any pressure on those exposed blood vessels, she will make her debut via c-section at 35 weeks, moving her due date from 9/4 to somewhere around 8/1.

It was a tough appt with lots of scary news (we didn’t even get an ultrasound pic because the doc was so serious and business-y). Just hoping and praying these next 5 weeks bring lots of steady growth for baby and those blood vessels stay protected. And even though this isn’t how I pictured the remainder of this pregnancy going, I pray that everything will go text book from here on out and I will be holding her safely in arms in a little over a month. I just keep reminding myself and thanking God that they caught this early on and are being pro-active and super thorough with my care. God will keep us safe and protect us, I just know it. Thanks for all the thoughts and prayers everyone!

Here is a pic from the NST (non-stress test) yesterday which she passed with flying colors. Sorry for the puffy eyes. Obviously, it had been a rough morning with lots of tears.

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29 Weeks!

29 weeks!

I can’t believe we are so close to 30 weeks. With each week that passes I am so grateful, so excited and getting so nervous. Not too much longer now!!!

Here’s what is going on this week according to Baby Center:

Your baby now weighs about 2 1/2 pounds (about the size of a butternut squash) and is a tad over 15 inches long from head to heel. His muscles and lungs are continuing to mature, and his head is growing bigger to make room for his developing brain. To meet his increasing nutritional demands, you’ll need plenty of protein, vitamins C, folic acid, and iron. And because his bones are soaking up lots of calcium, be sure to drink your milk (or find another good source of calcium, such as cheese, yogurt, or enriched orange juice). This trimester, about 250 milligrams of calcium are deposited in your baby’s hardening skeleton each day.

Your baby’s very active now. Your healthcare provider may ask you to spend some time each day counting kicks and will give you specific instructions on how to do this. Let your provider know if you ever notice that your baby is becoming less active. You may need a nonstress test or biophysical profile to check on your baby’s condition.

Some old friends — heartburn and constipation — may take center stage now. The pregnancy hormone progesterone relaxes smooth muscle tissue throughout your body, including your gastrointestinal tract. This relaxation, coupled with the crowding in your abdomen, slows digestion. Sluggish digestion can cause gas and heartburn — especially after a big meal — and contribute to constipation.

Your growing uterus may also be contributing to hemorrhoids. These swollen blood vessels in your rectal area are common during pregnancy. Fortunately, they usually clear up in the weeks after giving birth.

If they’re itchy or painful, try soaking in a sitz bath or applying cold compresses medicated with witch hazel to the affected area. Avoid sitting or standing for long stretches. Talk with your provider before using any over-the-counter remedies during pregnancy, and let your provider know if you have any rectal bleeding. To prevent constipation, eat a high-fiber diet, drink plenty of water, and get some regular exercise.

Some women get something called “supine hypotensive syndrome” during pregnancy. This happens when lying flat on your back causes a change in heart rate and blood pressure that makes you feel dizzy until you change position. You might notice that you feel lightheaded if you stand up too quickly, too. To avoid “the spins,” lie on your side rather than your back, and move slowly as you go from lying down to sitting and then standing.

How far along?  29 weeks
Total weight gain:  16 lbs. Still not up any weight from last week :-(. My OB is going to be so mad at me. I am trying so hard to gain weight…and nothing! Hopefully baby girl is getting bigger, that’s all I care about! I am planning to continue upping my protein intake. Maybe I should up my ice cream intake too :-)
Maternity clothes? I am loving how comfortable maternity is (especially maternity jeans) but still wearing lots of normal clothes, like sundresses, as well.
Stretch marks?  I keep checking, but none yet!
Sleep:  This last week has been rough with sleep. Not due to pregnancy, but due to nesting and decorating the nursery. I don’t think I went to bed once before 12:00 am this whole week. And I even stayed up until 5 am the night (or morning) my mom and aunt came into town to help with the nursery. They arrived at 3:30 am and we stayed up chatting until the sun came up. That was a rough next day!
Best moment this week: Getting the nursery almost finished, and having my mom feel baby girl kick and get the hiccups!
Miss Anything? Nope!
Movement:  Still lots of strong movements!
Food cravings:  Still fruit & Milk. And my mom made French onion soup this week. YUM!!!
Anything making you queasy or sick:  No.
Gender prediction: It’s a girl!
Labor Signs:  Thankfully, no! 
Symptoms: Round ligament pain, spider veins, varicose veins, a little ankle/foot swelling in the evenings, shortness of breath.
Belly Button in or out?  In…but barely. It is maybe more flat than in this week.  
Wedding rings on or off?  On.
Happy or Moody most of the time: So happy (but feeling nervous and anxious as well)!
Looking forward to: My perinatologist appt tomorrow at 11. I am excited to see baby girl, looking forward to getting some of my questions answered about the Vasa Previa, and nervous and excited about getting a gameplan possibly for the rest of the pregnancy. Still hoping and praying for a miracle! Also excited to get the few last details hung in the nursery and then share pics. It is sooooo close to being done!!!