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Friday, December 30, 2005

Happy New Year!

(33 weeks) We can hardly believe that 2006 is almost here! Time is flying by, it seems... We had a wonderful Christmas in Charlotte with the O'Brien's. Santa was very good to all of us. It's hard not to think of how different things will be next year, but it was nice to relax and enjoy this last holiday season as non-parents too. Not that the Stowaway was forgotten - she received lots of Christmas presents, particularly a great start on her own library, with a collection of storybooks from her Grammy. :)

Christmas Eve

Last night's birthing class was very informative, and the hospital tour was great. I think both Shawn & I feel a lot more comfortable, now that we've seen where we'll actually be for the Stowaway's grand entrance. The class has given us a lot to think about in terms of our preferences for the birth itself. I always thought I'd be the type to ask for the drugs as soon as I arrived at the hospital, but now we are at least considering an attempt at a "natural" birth. We'll have to wait and see what actually happens once labor starts though...

We saw the doctor this morning and everything still looks good. It took a minute to find the heartbeat, since the Stowaway kept squirming away from the doppler - little stinkpot! And she is certainly growing... I spent a few extra days in Charlotte this week after Shawn had to come home for work and when I arrived home yesterday he declared that the belly was bigger than it had been three days ago! She's probably more than 4 pounds by now, and I certainly feel really pregnant. It's hard to imagine how I'll feel in another few weeks.

In other very exciting news, I became an "Aunt" again today - Erin has adopted a 10 week old lab mix puppy, named Lucy. Erin & I went to the Humane Society earlier this week and found her (and she is SO CUTE!) but Erin didn't know if her adoption application had been approved until last night, after I left. Congratulations to the new mama... We can't wait to play with Miss Lucy!

Friday, December 23, 2005

Safe Zone

(32 weeks) We are now officially in the safe zone - babies born at this point or later have a really good chance at having no lasting effects of premature birth. Not that we want her to come this early! Stay put little girl!

We had two classes this week, one on nursing and one on labor & childbirth. The breastfeeding class was a little odd - people asked the dumbest questions! (So much for there being no such thing as a stupid question!!) And most of what was covered was information we've already read in our library of pregnancy books. But, the childbirth class was informative, and our instructor seems great. There were also far fewer annoying people in this class, so I'm sure the last 3 classes will be fine - next week we get to tour the hospital, which is what I am most looking forward to.

By now, the Stowaway probably weighs almost 4 pounds and should be about 17 inches long - starting to take up a lot of space! She has tiny toenails now, and her fingernails have grown in, too. Some babies have a head of hair already; others have only peach fuzz. Any bets on what the Stowaway will have when she's born? She has a shot at brown, blonde or red hair, if she's not totally bald! I am hoping for a little redhead like her daddy personally... :)
We are off to Charlotte for Christmas this year - hope everyone has a wonderful holiday.

Merry Christmas everyone!

Our Little Elf...

Saturday, December 17, 2005

7 Months

Friday, December 16, 2005

Guess the Stowaway's Stats...

(31 weeks) Not much to report this week... we had a boring doctor's appointment and a cancelled birthing class. So, I set up an online pool (no actual money involved) to guess the Stowaway's birth stats. Check it out at http://www.ExpectNet.com Then enter the Game Name "BabyHobbs1".

Prize from us to the person who guesses closest! :)

Sunday, December 11, 2005

What a lucky, lucky little girl!

(30.5 weeks) I had my baby shower this weekend, thanks to my amazing, wonderful, fabulous sister Erin (with some help from my dear friend Lauren and my wonderful mother).

Auntie Erin, Shower-thrower extraordinaire!

The Stowaway was showered with gifts and affection from so many people who are all very dear to me. As I said at the shower, these women have all had profound influences on my life, and I think that our daughter is so blessed already to count them among her family and friends! I feel so fortunate to have had them all in my life, and to know that they will all play a part in the Stowaway's life simply overwhelms me.

People traveled from all over - girlfriends were there from Chapel Hill and Charlotte and even as far away as Detroit, Chicago and Colorado! My sister-in-law came down from Boston, and Aunts & Cousins came from Rochester, Washington D.C. and Atlanta. See what I mean about how lucky this kid is already?!?!

Erin knows me so well - The shower was a very "girly" tea party at my most favorite spot in Chapel Hill. I had the MOST fun ever! And this child is going to be the best dressed kid in the entire state of North Carolina, thanks to the generosity of the people who were there!! I can't say thank-you enough... We love you all!

Friday, December 9, 2005

Puttin' on weight...

(30 weeks) Not me, or not just me! The Stowaway weighs almost 3 pounds now, and she is probably about 15 inches long. That's a pretty big growth spurt in the past few weeks. Her main job in the next 10 weeks (oh my god, we're down to 10 weeks!) is to put on weight, adding fat layers beneath her currently wrinkly skin.

We spent last weekend putting up all of our Christmas decorations and it was so much fun to decorate the new house! It was also a bit of a shock to realize how different things will be at this time next year, when the Stowaway will be about 10 months old! I have a feeling that a lot of our decorations will have to stay packed away next year, as I don't think anyone in their right mind would consider them kid-friendly.

Last night, we went and met the folks at the pediatrician's office that we will be taking the Stowaway to. They offer (and require) a sort of new parents' orientation. The doctor was wonderful and we felt really comfortable with him, so cross one more thing off that giant "to do" list - the Stowaway has a doctor!

Tomorrow is my baby shower, and there are tons of people coming into town, so check back next week for fun pictures and stories! :)

Oh, and I noticed this week that I can no longer see my feet past my belly... I look forward to seeing my toes again sometime next year!

Friday, December 2, 2005

Checking things off the list...

(29 weeks) This week was the first of our every-two-weeks doctors appointments. Not much new to report. The Stowaway is measuring as she should be, so she probably weighs about 2 pounds, 9 ounces and her heart rate is starting to slow down a little (it was 144 this time), which is apparently normal as well.

We have added a dresser to the nursery, so now we have a place for clothes and diapers, as well as diaper changes. We have started to receive gifts from far-away family members and friends (thank you all so much for your kindness and generosity!!), so the nursery is starting to fill up with baby "stuff". We have a stroller, a car seat, a crib, a cradle and a swing, along with some clothes, some diapers and some toys - it seems like that should cover most of the basics, at least for the first few weeks.

We have pre-registered at the hospital, so hopefully they will be ready for us when we arrive to deliver the Stowaway. We have an appointment next week with the pediatrician that we plan to take the her to. We are registered for all of our childbirth and babycare classes and will start them the week after next. We have also registered for the required "Baptism Preparation Class."

All of these things were on our "to do before the baby is born" list, which is getting shorter, slowly. People all want to know if we're "ready" for the Stowaway. We are steadily making progress on all of the things we are supposed to do, but ready? For a baby? In about 77 days? I think not. I think that we can't possibly be prepared for everything we're in for until we're actually living it. Wish us luck...

Saturday, November 26, 2005

Happy Thanksgiving!

(28 Weeks) We have so much to be thankful for this year! For our first Thanksgiving in our new house, we were lucky enough to celebrate with both sides of the family, for the 1st time ever. We hosted Shawn's dad, his sister Melissa, her husband Eric, and their son, the infamous Evan. My parents and sister, Erin, also joined us. It was a big, crowded, fun holiday - my favorite kind! :)

The Stowaway weighs approximately two pounds and her facial features are almost fully developed - eyebrows, eyelashes, and facial muscles are synchronizing. She probably measures about 14 inches from the top of her head to the bottom of her feet. She's acting more like a newborn now - sleeping and waking at regular intervals, and maybe sucking a finger. Her eyelids are opening on a regular basis but she mostly just sees shadows. Some books say that a baby will turn towards a bright light shined on mommy's tummy, and others say that it hurts the baby's eyes and that it's a mean trick. We haven't tried it.

But, we have discovered that if we want her to "show off" by moving around and kicking people, we can get her to do so by poking at my belly. It's like baby Morse code. I poke three times - "Hey what are you doing in there!" and she kicks or punches back twice - "I was sleeping - what do you want now??"

Big sister Scout discovers that she likes babies...

Sunday, November 20, 2005

6 Months...

Friday, November 18, 2005

Two Trimesters Down...

(27 weeks) I had a doctor's appointment this week and got to see my favorite of the 5 doctors in the practice. I rotate through all of them, and then whichever one is on-call when we go into labor is the one who delivers the baby. So far there's only one that I am not crazy about, so hopefully the odds will be in my favor to get a doctor that I like!

I had to do the Glucose Tolerance Test at this appointment, where I drank a super-sweet drink (it tasted like lime kool-aid) and then an hour later they took a blood sample to see if my body can process sugar properly, or if I was at risk for Gestational Diabetes. Luckily, I passed, so no worries there. My belly is measuring right on (27 cm), which means that the Stowaway is growing at the right rate, and should weigh about 2 pounds. She is expected to gain another whole pound in the next four weeks!

The shocker was at the end of the appointment when the doctor said "Okay, we'll see you every two weeks from now on, instead of every four." I guess we really are in the home stretch...

Monday, November 14, 2005

Our Weekend with Evan

Our nephew Evan was baptized this weekend up in Boston. Shawn & I had a great time visiting with him, and his parents. Evan is such a cutie, and quite possibly the happiest child on the planet. He warmed up to us right away and gave lots of cuddles all weekend. He was such a trooper, despite a cold, tons of people and very little sleep. He was all smiles and totally happy to show off his newly acquired skills - crawling and pulling himself up to a standing position. And he has the greatest giggle... Making him laugh is so much fun!

Shawn & I both got lots of good practice in baby care. We fed Evan bananas, Shawn assisted on a diaper change, and he also practiced with the baby seat and carrying Evan while in it and hooking it into the car. And Melissa & Eric are a huge resource for us, and they were more than willing to offer lots of practical advice.

The only bummer was how short our weekend was. We can't wait for Thanksgiving!

Lots of pictures follow... it was hard to choose, because they were all cute!

Evan at six months - such a cutie! Check out those blue eyes and that awesome red hair!

Shawn snuggles with a sleepy Evan.

Evan bonds with Eeyore - he's in mid-giggle.

Evan, after Mommy got him all dressed up in his Basptism outfit. He was a good sport, but didn't like his hat.

Godfather Shawn & Godmother Kelly make Evan an offer he can't refuse...

Evan with his mom & dad and his godparents, at his baptism (11-13-2005).

Evan tries out the rocking horse that Shawn made for him last Christmas, before he was born.

Rocking horses ROCK!

Thursday, November 10, 2005

99 Days?!?!

(26 Weeks) So, I am technically at the end of the second trimester and according to my countdown calendar, we only have 99 days til the Stowaway's due date (even though I think she will make her grand entrance a little later than that). There is something about that number dropping below 100 that makes all of this even more real and FAST! Where did the time go??

Stowaway stats: She's now about 12 or 13 inches long... the length of a ruler for those that need a visual (like me!) Last night, Shawn & I realized that we can now actually SEE her movements. My belly moves and ripples and you can see feet (or hands or elbows - we're not sure) poking out. It is very strange, but pretty cool. She's getting big!

We are off to Boston this weekend for our nephew (and godson) Evan's Christening. It'll be my last plane ride for awhile. We are so excited to see the Hobbs side of the family and especially Evan who is now 6 months old - he was only about 6 weeks old the last time we got to see him. He is apparently now crawling and has 6 teeth! When we last saw him he was working on holding his head up - so this should be a good lesson for us in how quickly babies grow up!!!

Pictures, including my six month belly shot, when we get back...

Monday, November 7, 2005

The Stowaway's room, in progress...

We got it done just a little bit at a time... We painted the walls pink 2 weeks ago, then added the stripes last week.
Hard at work... with my little assistant.

This weekend we added the chair rail, did all the touch-ups, replaced the terrible fluorescent light (too harsh for baby eyes) and shampooed the carpet. We even moved some stuff in.

We picked up the crib from my parents house last weekend, and Shawn had a fabulous time on Sunday morning putting it together, along with the swing. Seriously, he was like a kid on Christmas morning with new toys to play with! He couldn't wait to get started.

All we really need to get is a dresser/changing table and maybe a bookshelf. Shawn may build the shelf when he does the toy box though. And we are still on the hunt for a glider that's actually big enough for daddy to sit in too. But we have a nursery...

The Stowaway's new room!

Two silly faces...

Friday, November 4, 2005

A future lefty??

(25 Weeks) I think the Stowaway is already taking after her daddy and will be left-handed. She really prefers the left side of my belly - that's where she hangs out. I am completely lopsided and look entirely ridiculous... but that's okay :)

Our calendar says that she's getting close to the two pound mark now, that she can hear what's going on in the world outside, and that she's getting lots of practice breathing.

I still feel really good. I am not too tired and most days my only pregnancy "symptom" is how slow I am getting! Two weeks til the start of the 3rd trimester... time is flying by!

Tuesday, November 1, 2005

Our Weekend in the Mountains

Well, there weren't many changed leaves to see, but we had a great time exploring Asheville and the Biltmore Estate. It's a really pretty place. The Stowaway seemed to enjoy the trip - she was kicking up a storm the whole time! Here we are outside the Biltmore:

The weather was sunny and cold enough to feel like fall - there was even frost on the ground Saturday morning (which is quite a change from Raleigh, where it's 75 today!!)

This is the B&B we stayed at (notice the frost!)

We also had a really nice, belated anniversary dinner, thanks to mom & dad. :)

All dressed up, the three of us.

Monday, October 31, 2005

Happy Halloween!

All ready for trick-or-treaters (we got about 9):

The Stowaway's 1st Halloween "Costume":

Mommy & the Stowaway (at 24 weeks):

Monday, October 24, 2005

Nothing much to report...

(23 Weeks) We are doing really well. My mom & I just returned from a trip to Rochester and had lots of fun visiting with all of the family up there. Gripe: all the people on the plane who watched me struggle to get my bag in & out of the overhead bin without any offer to help. Meanies!

While we were gone, Shawn built a step stool that matches our bed, because it's so tall and I have been finding it increasingly hard to get into and out of!! We also celebrated our 4th anniversary last week and we're celebrating with a trip up to Asheville this coming weekend to see the leaves.

We had a doctor's appointment last week and everything looks good and right on target. The doctor's appointments are incredibly short - I wait a half hour and then see the doctor for 3 or 4 minutes. Next time I have to do the Glucose Screening Test. I hear that the drink is really gross - fun times!! :)

Oh, and after a conversation with Uncle-to-be Eric, Shawn decided that this Saturday night would be a good time to put together the stroller. I think he just couldn't wait to play with something!!

Friday, October 14, 2005

Oh, so THAT'S what that is!

(22 Weeks) The stowaway has been moving a lot more over the past week or so, and sometimes the movement is more than just an occasional kick or a punch. Instead, it's a series of weird moves that seem to be coming from several places all at once. I hadn't really been paying that much attention, but then in my weekly reading of my pregnancy books and my favorite websites, I finally realized that our little one has the hiccups! Apparently, this is good practice for her lungs.

Baby girl Hobbs should have just passed the 1 pound mark by now. Our calendar instructed us to take a package (4 sticks) of butter out of the fridge for comparison. That's a pound. It seems like she should be heavier by now, but soon enough I suppose!

We did make it to both Babies R Us and Lowes last weekend. The nursery is all ready to be painted, though who knows when we'll actually get around to it. We had lots of fun and just a little frustration in Babies R Us, as we tried to pick out all of the "right" things. Choosing a car seat can get a little stressful! But I think we did okay. My dad was in town last Sunday night and surprised us by taking me back to the store on Monday to get our stroller and the swing we had picked out. Someone's excited to be a grandpa!! Thanks dad. :)

Auntie Erin was at our house last night (Hotel Hobbs is really in business!) and got to feel some kicks from the stowaway too. Our girl is a little bit stubborn - though we can't imagine where she gets that from - and kept being still each time Erin tried to feel. Luckily, she finally cooperated.

And now, new pictures...

5 months

Shawn likes this one better - he was calling the baby "Ellie Mae" in the background and making me giggle...

Saturday, October 8, 2005

21 Weeks

The stowaway is now about the size of a banana, and she still weighs less than a pound. How does that compare to how much weight I've gained? Well, it's more than a pound, but I am within the "normal" range for this point in the pregnancy, so that's good.

Tomorrow we have big plans to do something baby-related. We're either going to Babies R Us to start registering, or to Lowe's to pick out paint for the nursery. If we're feeling really ambitious we may do both. I know, we're wild and crazy these days.... :)

We have also gotten our childbirth classes scheduled. Well, rescheduled, as I had originally set them up for a weekend when we weren't available. Blame that on pregnancy brain!! So, we were going to get it all done in one weekend, but now we'll spend Thursday evenings in December & January at the hospital. Oh well. It will probably be easier to sit still for two hours at a time, rather than eight!

Next week I'll be at 5 months, so we'll post new pictures then.

Thursday, September 29, 2005

Halfway There!

As of tomorrow, we will be 20 weeks along - halfway to the stowaway's arrival! I can hardly believe how quickly it's gone by. Everyone keeps telling me that it will only go faster, until we get to the last month, at which point time apparently slows down considerably...

Some random observations from the first half of pregnancy in absolutely no order:

~My belly button is getting very shallow - I have no doubt that it will completely flatten out or become an "outie" by delivery day.

~Registering for a baby is harder and less fun that registering for a wedding. Safety was not something I considered when choosing our bedding or dinnerware... We found some fun stuff to register for at Pottery Barn Kids, but the "real" stuff ( that's actually necessary) at Babies R Us is so far too intimidating!

~I am getting very round. Even Shawn today commented "Wow - you look really pregnant!" I'll take that as a compliment. Also, strangers at work have started to ask me if I'm pregnant. Good thing the answer is yes - otherwise that's just an awkward situation all around!

~I have started sleeping with a "pregnancy pillow" - recommended by Melissa - and my back doesn't hurt anymore! It's like two small pillows, connected by velcro, that support my back as well as the belly and prevent me from sleeping on my back and cutting off the blood flow to the baby. I thought I was a side-sleeper, but Shawn kept waking up and "catching" me sleeping on my back. Thanks for the advice Meliss.

~I went to my first "Pre-Natal Total Body Workout Class" (aerobics for pregnant people combined with relaxation and a little bit of labor prep) on Wednesday and learned that I am very out of shape.

~In addition to the big kick earlier this week that Daddy was finally able to feel, the stowaway has gotten bigger or stronger or both... I can now feel movement not only when I am laying down, but also when I'm sitting (in the car, on the couch, NOW!!) and even sometimes when I'm standing. The books say that she is about 9 inches long and weighs about 10 ounces. She's tough for her size! :)

~My parents came to visit last weekend and mom took me shopping for some fabulous maternity clothes, which I am now wearing all the time and they finally fit - hooray!

~I have found an upside to the hormones. I am totally relaxed now (comparatively speaking)! The type A/anal retentive/clean freak in me has been replaced by a love of naps, reading and general chillin'. Shawn seems to think this is a good thing too.

~In addition, all those late night trips to the bathroom and for MORE water have an upside too - I have finally mastered the art of falling back to sleep... I imagine that this will be very useful once I'm getting up several times a night to feed and change an infant.

~And finally, the stowaway received to awesome gifts last weekend from Auntie Erin that deserve a shout-out. In what I hope will come to represent some of her interests, Baby Girl Hobbs received her first pair of ballet slippers (and yes, they're pink!) and also her first set of tools, each of which have a pink bow tied to the handle. I am sure she'll be a big help to her daddy, and also very graceful. Thank-you Auntie Erin, for such thoughtful gifts. :) We all love you very much.

Monday, September 26, 2005

Daddy got Kicked!

(19 weeks) Shawn was able to feel the baby move for the first time tonight! :) She's getting strong...

Details from our big fun weekend soon...

Tuesday, September 20, 2005

The Stowaway is a...

Healthy, active, wiggly little GIRL!!!!

(18 weeks) Baby girl Hobbs is weighing in at about 8 ounces and is right on schedule in terms of growth. She's about 8 inches long. We had an amazing ultrasound today. It lasted about 45 minutes and we saw so much... I will try and remember it all!

We saw all four chambers of her heart, and got to see and heard it beating. We watched as her little hands moved around wildly, which could be due to the Mountain Dew I drank in advance of the ultrasound to ensure that baby would be active! (It's okay - the doctor told me to do that!)

We got several shots of her profile, and at one point she turned to face us! At which point I (Kelly) burst into tears... We saw her spine and her kidneys. All of her organs are functioning and growing on schedule. And, we also saw the placenta and the umbilical cord, which was pretty cool.

After all of the measurements were taken and the "requirements" met, the ultrasound tech started looking around to see if we could get a look at the parts, and our not-so-bashful little girl immediately showed us that she is in fact a she! We suspect that she's too shy to let us post that picture, so you'll just have to take our word for it!

Then, the ultrasound tech switched the machine over to 3-D mode and we got to see some amazing images of the baby moving around... We got some great profile shots, and some funny 3-D photos of her "hugging" the placenta. We also saw two tiny little feet! Warning: the 3D images are a little scary in Shawn's opinion, particularly because the baby has very little fat at this point and so she looks like a skeletal alien!

We are both delighted, and a little in shock. I think on some level we both thought this little one was a boy. But we are thrilled to announce that it's time to break out some pink!!!

Saturday, September 17, 2005

Me at 4 months, in the "official" pose and outfit. I know, it still doesn't look like I'm really showing... Posted by Picasa

4 months along, in the outfit that proves that I actually am starting to show! Posted by Picasa