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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...