final four!!

Its Game Day!  The "Civil War" of Kentucky basketball.  Lexington vs. Louisville.

I had this cake made just for today!

I LOVE this quote.  So glad I'm a Wildcat!!

"When you see Kentucky's fans, you just wonder. You think how wonderful it would be to go to their school. You wish you could trade places for a day, just so you could experience that feeling." 
- UCLA player Kris Johnson
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33 Weeks (+2 days)

At 33 weeks, Shepherd is moving around so much.  Today I don't think he rested all day!  At the ultrasound last week he was reaching down and playing with his toes.  I think he was doing that today, too.

Sleep changes day to day.  Some nights I sleep pretty well, other nights I toss and turn!

As of Monday, Shepherd weighs 5 lbs.  I'm sure he weighs a little more by now.  The doctor said his spine is laying on my left side, so I can tell my belly is a little lopsided.

Hmm...crazy symptoms/side effects of pregnancy.  Well, if I stand up for more than about 5 minutes my right leg falls asleep.  The doctor said he is just sitting on a nerve.  My feet, hands and ankles are super swollen.  If I have to stand up for awhile my feet and legs ache sooo bad.  My belly button has not popped out, but I think it might before too long.

One of my least favorite things is trying to bend over and pick something up.  It  I guess if thats my least favorite thing, my life isn't too bad.  

Joey and I have gone to two maternity education classes.  The first was all about child birth and what to expect in the hospital.  I have moments of being excited, but also of being terrified.  I'm scared of going into labor and being alone.  Joey's work asked him to go on a work trip during April and I said no way!  It would not be worth it if I went into labor!  However,  after that class we did feel a lot more prepared.  The best thing about that class was the it took place right in the middle of a UK game day.  Poor Joey was a trooper ;)  The teacher was smart though, she set up a tv in the back of the room with the game on!  

The second class we took was called Baby Steps and it was all about what to expect from a newborn.   We are going to have to learn quick!
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C-A-T-S Cats Cats Cats!!

I don't know if you are into March Madness, but Kentucky has gone full on basketball crazy.  Saturday we (The University of Kentucky) play The University of Louisville (also Kentucky) in the Final Four game.  Joey and I both are UK graduates.  We still haven't decided what we are doing for the game.  We wanted to be out somewhere to be with other fans and experience it, but I called a local restaurant/pub to see how early they thought we should get there and they said we "should" get a table if we got there by 1pm.  The game is at 6:00.  So not sure, we may have a viewing party at our house!  Either way, it is all anyone is talking about.  Can't wait!!!

To do my part, I made this UK wreath for our front door today.  I wanted to keep it classy and simple since our door is already mustard yellow!
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Dear Shepherd

(These pictures were taken around Thanksgiving, by my cousin.  No way do I look like that now!)

Dear Shepherd,

Your Daddy and I are so excited to finally meet you!  You have already made our lives a million times better and you aren't even here yet.  You are a special little boy!  Since the day I found out you were on your way (September 10th!) I have thought about you, pretty much every second of every day.  Every breath I take is a prayer for you.  I spent the entire first trimester praying for your health and safety and that I was doing everything right.  We've had nothing but good reports about you so I've stopped worrying about that as much, although it is still in every prayer.  Now I am thinking about all the things we want to teach you and the values we want to instill in you.  
God gave me such a huge responsibility in choosing me to be your mom.  Our time on Earth is temporary and our home is not here.  You are a child of God, and I am so blessed that He believes I can take care of you.  You are mine, and I want to do everything I can to give you the best life.

I hope you grow up knowing how special and loved you are.  I hope knowing that allows you to always be yourself and not worry about what other people think.  I hope you are comfortable in your own skin with nothing to prove.  I hope you aren't afraid to act silly and have fun!  I pray you find your own personal relationship with Jesus early on in life.  The sooner you find that, the sooner you can start living.  I hope you are so much like your Daddy and still like me, too.  I hope you have your Daddy's sense of humor, his drive, his way with words and people.  I hope you are easy going like he is.  I want you to know that being a man means so much more than the stereotypes.  It is standing up for what you believe in, knowing when certain things don't matter, being able to say you're sorry and do it quickly.  I want you to grow into a man who is honest and ethical, trustworthy and a good friend.  Don't let the world convince you "being a man" means something else.  A good man knows who he is, knows whats important, and puts those things first.  You have the best example you could ever ask for in your Dad.  

Oh, what a responsibility it is to be a mama to a boy!
I love you, my Shepherd.

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Shepherd Update

Thank you all so much for the encouragement and prayers after my last post about Shepherd!!  I wanted to give everyone an update after our ultrasound today.  

We had the appointment at 1:00 and immediately went back for the ultrasound.  It was exciting to see him, the last time we saw an ultrasound was 12 weeks ago!  It was a big difference, last time we could kind of get a full body view and now he is all curled up in a little ball with nowhere to go!  He was playing with his feet and had his head down right on my bladder.  (I could have told you that).   All of his organs were perfectly developed and looked good.  He weighed 5 lbs!  A little more than normal at this week.  I am 32 weeks + 5 days and he was measuring 34 weeks, about 10 days ahead.  They were quick to not let me think this changes his estimated due date, but 10 days ahead would put us at May 6th!  I definitely think he will be here a little early.  My guess has always been May 7th, my late grandmother's birthday.  Mom always knows! ;)

So we found out all of that in the ultrasound, but of course didn't know if it was normal.  After the ultrasound I went back up to the desk and they told me I didn't actually have an appointment.  They said I was going to have to wait until my next appointment on April 6th to talk to the doctor about the ultrasound.  
This of course was Not OK with me.  I swear you just have to tell people what you want because no one else cares about yourself as much as you do.  I have no shame!  How could I go to my appointment last Friday, have them order an ultrasound, which they said they would only do if there was a concern, and then wait for 2 more weeks to talk about it??  So I said, no, I really needed to talk to someone today to just ease my mind.  So the girl said she would go ask if any of the doctors could look at my ultrasound and we waited forever and finally got called back!   I didn't get to see my normal doctor but I saw another doctor.  She went over the ultrasound with me and said that they ordered it to make sure it was the baby that was big, and not extra fluid around him.  She said it was perfectly normal and everything looked good, he was just a big boy right now.  We will have to have another ultrasound at 36 weeks to check growth and if he is still measuring ahead of schedule we may have to think about a C-section.
So, we felt much better, just hearing from a doctor that everything looks good.

I really hope I do not have to have a C-section.  I know life isn't fair, but one case it should be is for a poor mama carrying around a baby for 10 months, completely having your body change and become not your own, tons of discomfort and aches and pains.  How in the world could it happen that she may have to have a C-section, then not get to even hold the baby and Dad gets to be the first one to hold him and then leave the room with the baby while you have to finish getting stitched back up from a major surgery?  Oh and then you have about 8 weeks of recovery time and a scar and can't get out of bed for 24 hours?  No thank you, I want a vaginal birth and to hold my baby immediately!  I know some people are happy with C-sections and prefer them, and who knows, I may change my mind if I have a vaginal birth, but right now I hope I don't need a C-section.  My mom said when she had me it was an emergency C-section so they put her to sleep and when she woke up she was alone and didn't even know if I was a boy or a girl.  Then to top it off, the entire family had already gotten to hold me and she hadn't even seen me yet.  My poor mom!

I have read so much about pregnancy and labor and delivery and babies since becoming pregnant.  It is amazing how much you take in in these 40 weeks.  One thing I feel so strongly about is that immediate bonding between mom and baby.  My hospital calls it "Kangaroo Care."  I want to immediately be chest to chest with Shepherd and breast feed right away.  I just really don't want to miss out on that!  There are so many benefits of immediate skin to skin contact between mother and baby.  I guess I have to be open to whatever happens, and having a healthy baby is what is most important, but I get anxiety not being sure how things are going to go.  I'm praying it all works out the way I hope, but mostly for a healthy happy baby!

Here is a picture from the ultrasound today (Its his profile):

I think he looks like me ;)

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baby things.

I wanted to share some of my favorite baby things we have for Shepherd:

This drying rack for his bottles now has a home on our countertop:
 Of course my little Shepherd had to have a sheep!  This is the Cloud B Sleep Sheep and I have heard such great things about it.  It has 4 different soothing sounds to help baby sleep, including mom's heartbeat.
 My mom's friend, Rose, made us so many precious personalized things for Shepherd.  We love this alligator burp cloth.
 Another Cloud B product, this is his Twilight Turtle.  It has 3 different colors and projects constellations onto the ceiling.  I can just picture him loving going to sleep looking at the stars!
 Here is another burp cloth from Rose.  I love having his initials on things, everything seems more special when it is personalized. SNL :)

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Shepherd at 32 weeks

Yesterday was our 32 week appointment to check on Shepherd.  Right now I am going every 2 weeks, until week 36 when I'll start going every week.  Right now the appointments are pretty boring, except for getting to hear his heart beat.  They just check a few things and ask if I have any questions.  Every appointment the doctor measures the size of my uterus.  Whatever week you are, you should be about the same amount of cm.  So at 32 weeks, they hope I measure 32 cm.  Every other appointment I've been so proud because I have always measured exactly along with my weeks.  My doctor was measuring me yesterday and said I just seemed to have really grown a lot since the last time she saw me.  At 32 weeks, I was measuring 34 cm.  She asked when my last ultrasound was and I said it was the anatomy one at 20 weeks.  She said she would like to schedule another one just to check on his growth.  She said she would guess he is in the 90th percentile.  She looked at my legs and feet and hands, all of which are pretty swollen.  I can't wear my rings anymore and I had to go buy a new pair of shoes a size up!  She also asked if there was any way I could work from home.  Wouldn't that be nice?!

I got upset worrying that something is wrong with Shepherd.  They had told me awhile ago that I probably wouldn't have another ultrasound after 20 weeks unless they were concerned about something.  I started crying and just couldn't stop.  My poor doctor didn't know what to do with me, she kept apologizing.  She promised she would be honest if she thought we should worry and she just wanted to check everything out.  She said it could just be that I'm small and there is nowhere for him to go but out, it could be amniotic fluid, or water retention. Sometimes you just need to cry it out and trying to stop myself from crying was making me cry more!  

We went ahead and scheduled the ultrasound for Monday.  She said we could wait until our next appointment but I said I just wanted to do it as soon as possible.  I am excited to get to see him again, I'm sure he looks so different from the 20 week ultrasound.  So Monday it is!  I may be having a giant baby ;)  Please keep us in your prayers!!
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Baby Shower #2

This past weekend my mom's Sunday School class hosted a shower for me in my hometown.  I've been seriously slacking on the picture taking lately, but here are some from my sister's camera.  I wish you could see the cute decorations!  They had blue and white polka dot balloons and handmade paper mache flowers on all of the tables.  
Here I am before we left:
31 weeks + 3 days
Me, my little sister Hallie, and my mom.  We color coordinated :)
How cute is this cake??
Getting ready to open gifts!
Me and my Grandma
My dad came by at the end to help load my car!

After these two showers we feel so much more prepared for sweet baby Shepherd.  8 weeks left!
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Baby Shower #1

We had our first baby shower for Shepherd last weekend.  My Aunt Beth hosted it at her house, along with my best friend Tressie.  We let the boys come and they went in the basement and played pool and air hockey!  Here we are with my family:
 Me with all of my sister-in-laws, Courtney, Jen & Caitlyn.
 Me, Tressie & Lindsay
 Lindsay and I are both pregnant and she is due barely 3 weeks before me!  We may very well have these boys together!  Its been so much fun to have another pregnant friend!  Especially since we are both having BOYS! :)
We let everyone decorate a onesie for Shepherd!  They were all so cute!  I love the second from right, my friend Kari drew a sheep and wrote Shep above it.

We also played games.  Tressie knows I hate any game that would include physical exertion or eating, so she did a good job planning ;)  We had a quiz matching celebrities to the baby name.  Did you all know Jerry Seinfield's son is named Shepherd??  The second game had a list of candy bars and pregnancy terms and you had to match them.  For example, breastfeeding = Milky Way!  The last game was full of riddles that made you guess the nursery rhyme.  Joey's mom (she is going by Nana) won every game!

 Here I am opening gifts:
 We bleed BLUE!!  This onesie was originally a mess up when a blue paint bottle exploded, but my cousin Hannah saved it ;)
 Joey and I with all of his family.  Matthew is so excited for his cousin Shep to get here!  When you ask him where Shepherd is he just says, "on his way."  And he won't give me a hug but instead hugs my belly to give Shep a hug!

Baby Shower #2 coming up next !
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maternity clothes.

Maternity clothes.  I've been so sick of trying to find something that fits/is comfortbale/doesn't make me want to take my bra off at work and stick it in my purse.  Yesterday my mom and I went to Target hoping to find some cheap dresses I could wear since leggings are making me sweat to death.  Apparently Kentucky decided to skip Spring and pretend its August.  I bought these 2 dresses and the bottom one in 2 colors.  I don't want to spend money on clothes I won't wear again!

I got these pajamas thinking I might want to wear them in the hospital.   Hopefully they fit!  

I had my second shower today in my hometown.  We got so much great stuff for Shepherd!  I'm excited to get back to Lex tomorrow and get everything settled in his room.  I'll share pictures from my showers soon!

Finally, GO CATS!! So excited we get a Rematch with GROSS Indiana!!  I hope they don't score one point!

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31 Weeks Thoughts

My husband came home today and had me listen to this song off the new Dave Barnes cd.   I just sat on the deck and cried. Dave Barnes has always been right on par with our relationship.  "Our song" is Until You and right when we were engaged he released a slow version that we were able to dance to at our wedding.  Now, he has this song about a new baby.  It is so sweet!   Can't wait to be a family of 3!
Here are the lyrics: 
Your mom and I, we're counting down
The days until that joyful sound,
When you turn the two of us to three.
It was time I guess, and heaven knew
And decided then to give us you.
God must know some things that we can't see.

And all we are, we are
Who we'll be, we'll be
Love and hurt, doubt and trust
Welcome to being one of us.

Your mother, well, she's strong and steady
Southern drawl and good lord, she's pretty
She's better than anything I dreamed
And honestly, I'm scared to death
I'll breathe at last at your first breath.
Everything you need, I'll try to be.

And all we are, we are
And who we'll be, we'll be
Love and hurt, doubt and trust
Welcome to being one of us.

As for you, we're soon to see
A room of blue or maybe pink
Mama's black or daddy's dirty blonde
Whoever you turn out to be
You're forever part of me
You turned me to a father from a son

All we are, you are
And who we'll be, you'll be
Love and hurt, doubt and trust
Welcome to being one of us
I love that he always mentions God in his songs.  I love when he says "welcome to being one of us." I can't articulate what that makes me feel.  Joey and I have been together for awhile and we've grown and changed together. This little boy is part me and part Joey and still part what I can't imagine.  I can't wait to see his little personality and watch him grow and learn.  

Tonight Joey and I made a "birth plan."  We wrote down what is important to us so that we don't forget during labor.  I can't wait to see Joey hold him for the first time!

Oh my gosh, I had an experience last night.  I went to a Le Leche League meeting for the first time.  I am a huge supporter of breast feeding and want to breast feed Shepherd for a year.  I know it is not always easy so I've been trying to educate myself as much as possible.  Le Leche was not exactly what I was expecting.  First of all there are a few things I do not do, and one of them is take my shoes off in public.  Oh my gosh, it is a struggle to bend over and get my shoes on period why would I take them off??  Also, they are all sitting on the floor on these pillows.  I am 8 months pregnant, if I sat down on the floor it would not be fun trying to get back up.  But all of these hippie women come in and take their shoes off, sit in their circle and start breast feeding.  I was just definitely the odd ball out, with my dress, boots and the only one sitting in a chair.  Which trust me, was fine.  So all of the women were very nice, but I just felt very out of place.  And seeing someone breast feed a 4 year old is just not the direction I'm going.  But, I'm glad I went, its good for me to have new experiences!

Remember that I've said my craving has been sweets?  I swear I was never a sweets person and I have always hated plain chocolate.  Monday I was at the grocery and I actually placed an entire bottle of Hershey's syrup in my cart.  Who am I?  I can't help it that I've convinced myself the only way to watch The Bachelor is with a homemade cookie monster and I thought it needed some extra chocolate.  However, I did not purchase it.  After looking at the ingredients and seeing high fructose corn syrup as #1, I decided to fight my craving!

Sleeping has become insane.  After I get in my nightly cry to Joey (who knows? Hormones...) I have my gigantic maternity pillow, plus 3 other ones.  I feel like a turtle on my back it is so hard to move around these days.  I'm driving Joey crazy but have warned him against ever complaining about me or joking that I am being exiled to the guest room.  Not funny!

Kentucky has had some crazy weather (tornados one day, blizzard the next, 80 this week).  For the past few months literally all I've worn is leggings and boots.  That is not going to work in 80 degrees heat.  Nothing in my closet fits me.  I'm not exaggerating.  But when I get off work all I want to do is come home and relax so I haven't been shopping.  I have a shower this weekend so I'll have to find something before then.  Today I also thanked God this baby will be here in May and I don't have to go through the summer sweating to death and uncomfortable!  I think I'll plan all of our kids around the summer ;)

I'm 31 weeks now.  According to my pregnancy app Shepherd is about 18 inches long and weighs almost 4 lbs!  They compare him to a head of lettuce.  Really?  Where do they come up with this stuff?
I've been feeling him move around every day.  It is the best part of the day when I see a little nudge or feel a little kick!  However he is a little stinker who stops moving anytime I try to get Joey to see!

I don't know where he is going to go the more he grows.  I feel like my stomach is so stretched out already.  All of my organs are pushed around and it is the weirdest feeling!

Have you all heard Jay-Z's song Glory about his daughter? (By the way I always wanted to name our daughter Blue, but Joey would never agree so we named our dog that!)
  I thought this lyric was so sweet about Beyonce:
"A younger, smarter, faster me
So I pinch of Hov, a whole glass of B"
I love Jay-Z.

Here I am at 30 weeks + 3 days:

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game day. go CATS!

 Jay-Z loves the CATS!
 So does Ashley Judd.
 Everyone loves Coach Cal.
If you're from Kentucky I'm sure you've seen this.

Go CATS!!!  So proud to be a UK graduate!!
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Random Ramblings

These were taken today.  I am 29 weeks + 3 days!

We were so excited today because Joey felt Shepherd kick!  I was laying on the couch and Joey's hand was in just the right spot on my belly to feel it!  As I've mentioned before, I have an anterior placenta which makes it hard for me to feel him moving, let alone someone from the outside.  In the past week or so I've been feeling him everyday, but to feel him from the outside has to be just luck!  Joey was so excited to feel him!

It is getting so close!! Its so crazy to think that babies are born this far along.  I can't wait to meet him, but I definitely am ok with a little more time to mentally prepare!

We got one step closer to finishing the nursery tonight.  Joey and I went to my favorite Asian restaurant, Wah Mei to eat dinner.  After that we went to Garden Ridge.  I didn't want to go, but Joey insisted and I'm glad he did.  We found a rug for Shep's nursery!  I don't know if you've ever been to Garden Ridge and seen their rug section, but its ridiculous.  

I spotted the rug above, and we loved it. was a little too big.  I knew there had to be a smaller size and we made it our mission to find it!  You can see how hard it would be to find a specific rug in this huge mess.  I left Joey to search while I went to the bathroom.  When I came back he still hadn't found it.  I asked him what prize I would get if I could find it before he did!  Within about 5 minutes I found it under a big stack!  We were so excited!  Only problem was the stack was huge and the rugs were heavy!  We spent probably 15 minutes trying to get to the bottom of the pile.

Finally we got to it.  But my poor husband was worn out!

I can't wait to show you all the finished product when we finally complete the nursery!

Well this was a random post, if you made it this far, thank you!! Haha!
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