ETC: Week 40

Hello friends!

I hope all is well! This past week, we made it to 40 weeks! It’s very bittersweet because I am very happy baby girl is fully cooked, but I’m also very anxious to meet her already!

We had a rather busy week and even had some visitors, but still, no baby!

Our 40-week weekend was beautiful; warm and filled with sunshine! Saturday we ran our weekly errands and Sunday we didn’t move until about 1pm. After relaxing all morning, we decided to go on a long walk. We walked down to the lakefront path and took a stroll through Andersonville on the way home. It was nice to reminisce along my old running path. Once Naomi is here and old enough to be in the jogging stroller, she will quickly become well acquainted with that path as well!

I worked from home this week which was extremely stress relieving. Not having to commute on crowded public transportation or worry about my escape route from downtown to up north if labor were to start was a blessing. Also, not having to try and fit in to office maternity clothes was pretty nice. At this point, a few maternity items still fit because they are stretchy, but are they by no means comfortable.

My mom and sister also came to visit this week. Unfortunately for them, when they booked the trip, they had planned to spend time with the baby since it was technically 2 days passed my due date that they would arrive. Joke was on all of us because, Naomi never made her grand entrance into the world.

It was nice to see them both one last time without a baby though. We went to Homeslice pizza one night and Xoco another night. Two places we wouldn’t have been able to check out with a newborn. We also stopped and walked around Oz park. Did you know, the statues can talk to you?!?! You enter a website on your phone then Dorothy or Tin Man will call you and talk to you for a minute or two. It’s a neat idea and I can’t wait to take Naomi to see them, once she’s old enough to understand the hype.

My mom and sister left at the end of the week but booked another stay the first weekend in May. They will be guaranteed to meet Naomi this next time around!

It was also our precious Pumbaa’s birthday this week! He is 7 and I cannot believe where the time went. I adopted Pumbaa when I moved to Whitewater for college and since then, he’s become such an important part of our family. I hope he loves Naomi as much as he loves us. It may take some getting used to, but he’s a cuddly lover so I have faith in him.

We made it the entire week, everyday asking ourselves ‘is today the day?’ We’ve tried nearly every home remedy people suggest and have answered the “where is she” or “how are you feeling” question at least 55 million times (little to no exaggeration on that estimated number). I’m fully convinced that all of these “at home labor inducing tricks” only work if baby is ready and Naomi is just not ready yet.

It’s definitely bittersweet going past your due date. Yes, I am so happy she’s fully developed in my belly, but we are anxiously awaiting her arrival. There’s a sense of frustration that kicks in when you wake up in the morning and realize it’s time to get up for work but you haven’t had any contractions and today may not be the day. However, it’s a blessing to continue feeling her movements. Soon, she will only be able to kick me from the outside 🙂

Currently, I am 41 weeks and 2 days pregnant. Our next update WILL have a baby update because I will be induced at the end of the week if she doesn’t come out on her own. I personally think she just wanted to wait for the month of May because Te’s birthday is also in May; so we have a serious daddy’s girl on our hands! 🙂

We cannot wait to meet our little bundle and I cannot wait to be done with pregnancy! We’ve got quite an exciting week ahead – Stay tuned!!

Until next time..

ETC: Week 38

Hi friends!
I hope everyone is having a great week! This past week we completed our 38th week of pregnancy. We are coming so close to meeting our little girl and we can NOT wait!

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Olive Park – Chicago, IL

Luckily, no one was sick this week – Thank you, Jesus! 🙂 To start off the 38th week, we took a trip downtown to visit Olive Park. It is a very pretty part of the city and the weather was gorgeous! I started feeling some pains in my lower belly area while walking – they amounted to nothing but it was reassuring that my body seems to be preparing for labor and delivery!

After being sick last week, I took it easy this week. Instead of 5 am wake up calls to go to the gym, I started getting up at 6 and going on a 2 mile walk around my neighborhood. This is definitely a change in pace for me. I am used to HIIT and running workouts followed by weight training, so allowing myself to learn to apprecite walking as a workout has been interesting. It definitely feels good to stay mobile throughout these last couple of weeks, but I cannot wait to get back to running!

Monday at work they threw me a baby shower. We had a delicious Sweet Mandy B’s cake (Chocolate with vanilla frosting – YUM) and the sales team got together and got Te and I an extremely generous gift card to Target. We are very thankful to have so much support from both of our work families in the city! I had a doctor appointment on Monday night (as I do every Monday now days :)) and it was super quick. Everything seems good, we’re just waiting on baby girl to come on out!

Tuesday night we had some friends over, Natalie and Reni, for a taco Tuesday celebration. It was so wonderful to see them and catch up! They just returned from a trip to Japan so we talked all about their travels and caught up on life. We also asked them to be Godparents to our little Naomi and we are so excited they said yes! 🙂 She is so lucky to have such positive influences in her life – they will be such great role models for her growing up!!

The rest of the week, we took it easy as well. We continue to clean the house and prep for baby as much as possible, but we’re pretty much all set. Now, we wait! I am feeling very ready to meet the baby! Also, I only have a few items of clothing that fit me now and I refuse to buy anything new, so dressing for work.. and life, really, is becoming quite a challenge. Also, the swelling I’m experiencing in my feet/ankles/legs/fingers is intense. I am ready to be done with the discomfort that comes along with these last couple of weeks!

Te and I put a fun little bet on Naomi’s birthday. I said April 16th (Which if you’re reading this now, it didn’t happen..) and Te said Thursday, April 20th. We’ll see if either of us are right! I couldn’t care less what day she comes, I just pray she comes before or on her due date. I am not looking forward to 41 weeks of pregnancy – I want to meet you little Naomi!! 

We just started our 39th week of pregnancy this past Saturday and we are hoping it was the last bump photo we have to take! I’ll update you next week with a bumpdate and HOPEFULLY, a baby intro! 🙂

Stay tuned!

Until next time..

ETC: T-30 days

 

We are so close! In less than 30 days we will be Bates, party of 3!

Looking ahead, since we aren’t sure when our little girl will make her grand appearance, I’m going to try and give an update every week. Don’t hold me to it, but I’ll try my best 🙂

For this post, join me as I take a look at back at our 8th month of pregnancy.

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Warning, this was a crazy busy week for us! For our 1 year anniversary, Te bought me tickets to a bread baking class. I was super excited because I’ve always wanted to go to a couple’s cooking class! We learned how to make sourdough bread and once everything came out of the oven, the instructor pointed out a loaf that was ‘perfect’. Low and behold, it was Te’s 🙂 It was also pretty ‘punny’ that we had our bread bun in the oven while I also have a ‘bun in the oven’ 🙂

Next on our list, we drove to Milwaukee to pick up a stroller. Also, I met with my long time friend Jenny and my sister for brunch. It was so nice to catch up!

Another thing we did was attend a home buying class! Redfin hosted a free class where they provided dinner and some tips for first time buyers. It was eye opening and left us feeling optimistic about *someday* buying our own humble abode.

Also this week, we went to our first Chicago Blackhawks game! It was magical 🙂 We have now been to every major Chicago sporting event (yes, including the Chicago Fire and the Chicago Wolves). The atmosphere at the Blackhawks game was unreal – I think it’s my new favorite type of event! We saw some friends at the game and were able to catch up with them a bit, which added to the excitement of the evening!

Believe it or not, we ALSO had a baby shower this week [I warned you, it was a very busy this week!]. Te’s Shred co-workers-turned-family threw us the cutest shower. We got our first diaper cake and Naomi got her first pair of (gold) Nike’s!! We are so thankful for the Shred team who has truly become family for us.

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This week, the city of Chicago celebrated St. Patrick’s Day by dyeing the river green! I’ve never gone to see the green river so we decided this year was the year we would go check it out! I couldn’t believe how truly green it was!

Unfortunately, after our many festivities of week 33, Te came down with the flu during week 34. It was a very tough week because he was VERY sick so I was trying my best to care for him while not getting sick myself.

On top of Te being sick, we scheduled a vet appointment for Pumbaa. It. Was. Awful. Our cat HATES the vet. It’s truly the worst time of year when we have to take him. He gets angry and hisses and is very mean. I understand he’s scared, but jeeze!!! At any rate, we got his shots so he’s ready for baby. However, Te had to clean poop and pee off of Pumbaa’s butt when we got home because they kept him in the kennel to administer the shot, he got scared and let loose. I felt terrible because I couldn’t help since I have to avoid cat poop while pregnant. UGH! What a day it was. We both took a long nap after that event.

After an entire week under the weather (poor babe 😦 ) and an awful vet appointment, we were able to get out of the house that weekend and turn our frowns upside down. We went to see Beauty and the Beast! I’ve been dying to see the movie and for Valentine’s Day, Te ordered tickets for us to go. It was amazing. I cried at least 5 times in the theatre and twice when we left. I also indulged on delicious movie theatre popcorn which was incredible.

All in all, it was a happy ending to a very tough week.

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This week was much easier. Slower pace and no illness! We always wanted to take a photo at this adorable coffee shop and of course, try their coffee. Well when we arrived, unfortunately the coffee shop was closed. 😦 We still took the picture then went back to our car. Before we left, we stopped in to Goddess & the Baker to get a latte and a scone. To our surprise, as we were waiting for our order, a ginormous (tall) guy walked in and right away, Te knew who he was [Paul Zipser from the Bulls]. Te went up to him and showed him a photo that Te took of him while at the Bulls game. They talked briefly and we let him get on his way. I would have had NO idea this guy played for the Bulls but thanks to hubby, we got to briefly meet him.

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9 months pregnant. Woah. In the next 4 weeks (or 5-6.. but hopefully 4 :)) we will meet our little girl! This week was ALL about nesting. We got the changing table we’d been eyeing up and were able to organize everything in Naomi’s space. We gave our apartment a mini makeover and a deep clean since we aren’t sure when we will have time to do that again.

On the way to take our bump pic this week, we decided to stop at Cafe Tola to get an empanada snack. They had chicken mole empanadas which, if you know me, you know I LOVE mole. It was absolutely delicious! We decided to scrap our original photo plan and take our bump pic on the side of the Cafe Tola building because, well.. Hey Kanye! 👋🏽🤣

Also this week, Jaime & Tiffany came to Chicago and spent the day with us! It was so fun seeing them. They brought Naomi some of the most adorable gifts. She’s so blessed to have such thoughtful family! During their visit, we went to HopLeaf because it’s been on our “to-do” list forever. After a couple of drinks for the boys, we went to DMK for dinner and completely indulged in some of the city’s best burgers and fries. We don’t have much planned for the rest of the week so I’m excited for another slow, uneventful couple of days.

We are very close to meeting our princess. I may or may not have a “bumpdate” for you next week – I could possibly have a baby update!

Stay tuned!

Until next time..

ETC: It’s the Final Countdown

Hello friends! I hope you’ve had a great couple of weeks!

Since my last bump update, we have come quite a long way! From a scare of gestational diabetes to entering my third trimester which I’m calling,”the final countdown”. We were planning for a quiet month but we ended up doing a lot and it was great! Take a ride down memory lane with me as I look back on month 6 and look ahead towards month 7 and my final trimester of pregnancy!

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Ahhh, the CTA. We had to take a picture on our trusty transportation system. 🙂 Yes, the one where you get asked for money by the needy, stand packed like a sardine on the way home from a long day at work (standing like that 7 months pregnant is super fun…), see people throw up on themselves/the floors of the train, and even get to sit in cars that smell of cigarettes, urine and feces. Who doesn’t love public transportation?!?! 🙂 In all seriousness though, I’m thankful for the CTA because despite the ridiculous things that may happen, it’s a safe way to get from point A to point B without having to pay for gas or sit in rush hour traffic.

Week 25 we celebrated the birthday of a friend’s one year old! It was such a fun party and made me realize that we are in for lots of fun birthday celebrations to come! Mama was feeling a bit cranky this week, and day in particular (sorry papa!) but the party was a fun way to forget about the stress and spend time with close friends. 

We also had brunch with my sissie and her new man at an awesome cereal bar in the city. It was amazing being able to catch up with her and enjoy a delicious breakfast! 

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[I would just like to point out that it’s mid-January in this photo and although chilly, I’m capable of taking a photo outside without a coat – THANK YOU Chicago]. Week 26 started off with a baby registry event at Babies R Us. It was great! Lucky for us, we were the only people who showed up so we “won” a pack of pampers! Woot woot for free diapers 🙂 After the event, we went out with some friends for brunch at Orange in Roscoe Village and it was delicious. It was great to catch up with people we haven’t seen in forever! Papa also had his first paid photography gig after brunch and it went so well! Naomi and I are so proud of you babe!! ❤

During this week I had a couple of different lunch dates with some of my favorite ladies! It’s so fun getting together and hearing about what’s going on in everyone’s lives. I’m so proud of my ambitious friends!! 

Also this week, I found out a close friend of mine from work was leaving so that she could stay home with her daughter. It was so bittersweet because, although I am happy for her, selfishly, I want to keep her at work so we can still hang out! Now our work lunch dates will just transition in to play dates for our girls, so I guess it’s not so bad! 🙂

Lastly, I found out I failed my initial gestational diabetes test this week. It was really hard on me because I felt like my body was failing. I eat pretty clean still and I am still exercising 3-5 days per week. ‘How could this happen’, I thought? After the initial shock and terribly sad feelings, I learned that sometimes it just happens. No matter how healthy you are, sometimes the condition pops up strictly due to hormones and how your body is reacting to them, not necessarily because of what you’re eating or how active you are. That made me feel better. But I was SO scared to take the long gestational diabetes test because I absolutely H A T E getting my blood drawn…
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..This is the look of a 27 week pregnant woman who HATES getting her blood drawn. This same woman who failed her first gestational diabetes test so she had to wake up at 6:30 AM on a Saturday to get her blood drawn FOUR different times; once in an already bruised arm/vein and three times in the other arm, over a three hour span of time. Thanks to God, I have an incredibly supportive and caring husband who sat with me in the hospital from 7 am until nearly 11 am waiting for me to get the blood draws. Thanks again to God for protecting me and Naomi from the condition they were testing for which was gestational diabetes [We passed!]. Despite the morning being one of my least favorite, once the test was over we went outside and it was nearly 50+ degrees! It was absolutely beautiful and it helped bring up my spirits a bit. I mean, can you deny the amazingness of a warm, sunny day in January in Chicago?! 

We also went to a friend’s house this week to watch the Packer game. It was great to see some old friends and catch up, but the Packers played awful and lost, which was very sad. 😦 There’s always next year, I guess! 

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At 28 weeks, Naomi went to her first Bulls game. Although they also lost, it was a great time! [And no, Naomi is not bad luck for sports, if that’s what you’re thinking. Proof: the Cubs won the World Series after 100+ years of losing. It’s not her fault the Packers didn’t want to meet Trump and the Bulls couldn’t pull it together! 😉 ]

Also this past week, Te and I cat sat our second favorite kitty ever, Myko. It was so great to see him because last time we watched him he was SO tiny and now he looks like a big lion. This got me thinking about how I cannot wait for Naomi to meet Pumbaa… and well, #AllTheCats really. I will be converting her to a cat lady immediately. 🙂 

One last thing we did this week was go out to celebrate a friend’s birthday. After seeing her, Te and I went to dinner. We wanted to try this new burger place nearby but when we got there, it was filled with kids. We were contemplating leaving because we wanted an adult date night. I was frantically searching for a new place nearby that we could go even as the hostess was walking us to our table. The hostess laid down our menus at our table and before walking away said “your server, Naomi, will be right with you.” So inevitably we took that as a sign we should stay 🙂 I am glad we did; the burgers were great and the s’mores sundae was even better!

As I look back, month 6 was filled with many ups and downs. All in all, it was a great month with lots of love from friends and family and a few date nights sprinkled in!

As I look ahead to month 7, we’ve got a lot coming up! 

This coming weekend, we have our first baby shower in Wisconsin. I am so excited to see family and close friends who I have not seen in so long!! It’s going to be a great day to celebrate this little lady! 

February 21st is Te and I’s one year wedding anniversary which I am SO excited to celebrate!! This past year went so quickly and was filled with so many wonderful memories. I’m excited for forever with my beau.

At the end of the month we have another shower planned in Chicago and it’s at THEE best ice cream shop in the city. I’m pretty excited I passed my diabetes test so I can indulge a bit 🙂

So, we still have 12 weeks to go!  It’s not the final, final countdown BUT we’re getting close. We are now officially in the third trimester; the final trimester (aka so close). I’m getting more and more excited to meet this little girl every day but for now, I’m ok with waiting roughly 12 more weeks. 

Until next time..

Explore: Greatness

The past few months have seemed to be nothing but change and transition. I left one of my jobs to pursue a different industry. The change was scary. I had a completely new routine. It was uncomfortable and I wasn’t sure what would come of it. It was a risk that ended up leading to a slew of opportunity and confidence.

Not going to lie, in the thick of it, I was scared and hard on myself. ‘What the heck did I do?’ I thought to myself. I’m not particularly akin to taking risks, I tend to find a routine and stick to it. This was my first big career change and in doing so, it helped me break my mold. In the discomfort, I was learning and growing so much and looking back, I’m so happy I took the risk.

Over the past three months, I rekindled my passion for fitness, health and wellness. I didn’t have a gym to workout in everyday so I pushed myself to get up and run outside for my workouts; something I’ve always despised. Today, three months later? I just completed a 7 mile run outdoors.

Additionally, I found workout classes to get involved in that help push me to my limits. While attending classes, I’ve met some really amazing people who I am happy to now call friends. I have found inspiring leaders in the fitness industry to look up to. I learned that working out doesn’t have to mean waking up at the same time, running the same amount of miles on the treadmill and lifting the same weights each day. In fact, it’s so much better when there’s variety.

Not only am I involved with new fitness and wellness activities that personally benefit me, I found two amazing organizations to get involved with in the Chicago area.The first is Bright Pink. Bright Pink is the only national non-profit organization focused on prevention and early detection of breast and ovarian cancer in young women. The second is Girls on the Run. Girls on the Run-Chicago is a non-profit after-school program that uses the power of running to educate and prepare 3rd-8th grade girls for a lifetime of self-respect and healthy living. I’m part of two bigger wellness missions and it feels absolutely amazing.

Finally, I learned that I love marketing. I stepped away to pursue sales and event planning which was great, but I’m a creative person and I love the field of marketing. That being said, I’m starting a new career in marketing this week. The catch, it’s in an industry in which, I have very little experience; the financial industry.

Am I 100% ready for a brand new routine again? No. Was I ready for all of the change that came my way three months ago? No. Am I scared of what’s to come and what’s expected of me? Heck yeah! The difference now, is that I realize change brings amazing opportunities to light. Just like we learned in physics, an object in motion tends to stay in motion, well our bodies are objects and so, as long as you’re moving along, God will be there to guide you. The problem ensues when we stop moving. God can work to mold us so much easier if we get up, get out and get moving. Go take risks, it brings you closer to greatness.

It’s scary, I know. But maybe you’ll learn that whatever the new thing is, that it’s totally your thing. Maybe I start this career and learn that I prefer the financial industry over the sports industry; maybe I think it’s the worst thing ever. Either way, would I have ever known this if I never tried something new? The answer is no. The best part is, either way, I’m learning, I’m growing and I’m getting closer to figuring out what God’s plan is for me.

What are you doing to take risks? How are you growing? Maybe it’s a new job. Maybe it’s a new way of thinking about yourself. Maybe it’s getting up in the morning and walking a mile outside even though it’s early, you don’t want to and you hate working out outdoors. Trust me, it’s worth it.

Even if you think, ‘Man I’m no good at this, there’s no point’, KNOW that there IS a point. The point is to better yourself. The point is to start something today that you can look back on in three months or six months or one year and say ‘Wow, remember when I started and I wasn’t that great? Look at me now, I’m better!’

I’d love to hear about the things you’re trying to accomplish, even if you’re not necessarily ready. What are you doing that’s scary? What are you doing to achieve greatness? Let me know in the comments below!

Until Next Time..