Yearly Archives: 2015

A Baby Story [Part II]: Week 40

Week 40: Baby’s the size of a small pumpkin

Lucia’s due date came and went and, strangely enough, as soon as April 15th was over I felt a ton less anxious about the pregnancy going on as long as it was. I decided to take advantage of the time Lucia was giving me to relax as much as possible (taking one nap a day…glorious), spending as much one-on-one time with Sirena as possible (picnic lunch at a new park, feeding the ducks at the duck pond), and walkingwalkingwalking as much as possible every single day (Lola was in doggy heaven!)

Monday, April 20 was the last full day of the pregnancy before labor began. We had what turned out to be a final prenatal appointment that morning and was met with the same disappointing news as last week’s appointment–I hadn’t yet started dilating and my cervix was still pretty high up. I got teary-eyed and the midwife was so reassuring–she said that as a second time mama things could change in an instant and that I was still just fine in terms of the length of the pregnancy and that she wasn’t getting worried yet so I shouldn’t be worried yet. Hearing the confidence she had in me gave me a ton of confidence and I left the appointment feeling hopeful.

Sirena was with Nani (my mom) that day and I was lucky in that both of my siblings randomly reached out to spend some time with me (they were in sync that day!) We went on a long walk with Lola and it felt great to catch up with the both of them. That afternoon when I went to pick up Sirena from my mom’s house I was given a really touching gift–my mom put on Bette Midler’s “Wind Beneath my Wings” and Sirena put on the most amazing interpretive dance the entire length of the song. I was so emotional listening to the words of the song and watching the innocence and the amazing way in which she expressed herself (and her kick-ass dance moves!) It was an incredible way to end the pregnancy and the era of Sirena being an only child.

Belly shot!


This final belly shot was taken on the last day of the 40th week of pregnancy, Lucia’s birthday (April 21). It was taken in front of the birth center only 4.5 hours before she was born!

Other pregnancy updates:

  • Total weight gained so far: 17 pounds
  • Fun baby developments: She’s probably around 20 inches long and in the 8-9 pound range. Her skull bones haven’t yet fused (to allow for passage through the birth canal) and her hair/nails are still growing and her lungs are continuing to develop, getting ready for that first wail of life!

A Baby Story [Part II]: Week 39

Week 39: Baby’s the size of a mini watermelon

Like the past few weeks, this week has been quite the roller coaster emotionally. Each day I’m anxious about whether or not it’s the last day of the pregnancy and the logistics of getting Sirena situated with childcare and getting me and Kevin to the birth center on time, especially if it’s some crazy hour in the middle of the night. Towards the end of week 39 I was treated by my friend Kim to a wonderful prenatal massage which was downright heavenly. I also decided to treat myself to a manicure (something that I’ve done only a handful of times in my life!) and it felt really good to do these types of things especially so late in the pregnancy when so much of my physical/emotional/mental energy is focused on another living being (beings if you count Sirena too!) besides myself.

As I publish this blog post I’m actually at Lucia’s due date: April 15 (40 weeks pregnant to the day). It’s a bit surreal to be writing this post because never did I think I’d make it to her due date! Sirena was a week early and I thought that meant something but it obviously doesn’t mean much. Today we had our 40 week prenatal appointment and I was met with some less-than-stellar news after my internal exam: Lucia actually has not dropped like I thought she had a couple of weeks ago. She’s still pretty high up there and hasn’t dropped into my pelvis yet. It’s hard to believe because it feels like she’s sitting right on top of my lap when I sit down and I feel intense pressure on my bladder but my body just carries this pregnancy differently and the reality is that this girl ain’t quite ready yet. The midwife said that it could change at any minute especially for a second time mama but I was really hoping/expecting some better news (that she had definitely dropped and I had already started dilating). I have another prenatal appointment on Monday (40.5 weeks) for a non-stress test for the baby and to talk about possibly sweeping the membranes if we decide to go that route to help move things along. At our next visit we’ll also schedule a follow-up visit for that following Thursday to check on the progress of things. The midwife suggested some homeopathic tablets for labor preparation which I decided to try out and will be taking them twice a day until Lucia’s born.

Each night as Kevin and I put Sirena to bed I get emotional thinking about the fact that it may be the last time I kiss her goodnight before the craziness of newborn days begins and I’m no longer just mama to Sirena. I’m trying my best to enjoy each and every moment of our time together (tantrums and all, haha) because I know this reality is quickly coming to an end. Although the thought of her and Lucia being buddies and playing together and loving each other brings me so much joy, I know that the alone time I have had with Sirena has been so special and I wouldn’t trade it for the world. <3

Belly shot!


Other pregnancy updates:

  • Total weight gained so far: 17 pounds
  • Fun baby developments: She’s probably around 20 inches long and between 7-8 pounds. She’s probably able to flex her limbs now and her brain is still rapidly developing, getting smarter by the week!

A Baby Story [Part II]: Week 38

Week 38: Baby’s the size of a pumpkin

This week started off with our 38 week prenatal appointment–Sirena tagged along again and midwife Elizabeth was really great about including her in all aspects of the visit including helping her get all of the materials out, measuring my belly, squirting the goopy stuff on my belly so that she could use the fetal heart doppler machine, and cleaning my belly off afterwards. 🙂 The midwife felt Lucia and confirmed she’s still in the heads-down position and she thinks she was around 7 pounds at the time. My belly is still measuring a week behind but everything else is showing signs of good progress so there’s no worry there.

IMG_3938Sirena showing off her “I visited with my mommy’s midwife today” sticker!

I finally tackled one huge item off my to-do list this week which was prepare three meals to store in the freezer for when Lucia’s here so that we don’t have to worry for a week at least about making dinner. The midwives also suggest bringing a meal for Kevin and me (especially me) to eat after the birth so one of those meals is for us to chow down on. I remember how hungry I was after Sirena was born and because it’s not a hospital setting with a full kitchen they won’t be providing us food and if it’s 3am we may not be able to get anything so it’s best for us to prepare ahead and being a meal to eat. I made sure to make it protein and carb heavy for the marathon I’m about to embark on!

IMG_3953Two of the three meals I made–Spinach tortellini + tomato soup and Italian rice and beans (not pictured: Tahini lemon rice and beans)

This past week has felt like a roller coaster for me. It was my last few days of work which had me overwhelmed, stressed beyond measure, and frankly just tapped out. After signing off for work for 3 months (hallelujah!) the start of my maternity leave began with a couple of days being with Sirena on my own which isn’t anything new and I generally love our “Mommy + Sirena time” but she has been going through a somewhat difficult phase (outright saying “no” when I ask her to do something, yelling and trying to hit me when I put my foot down, and an emotional meltdown when she doesn’t get her way) which also left me running on empty. After the weekend I was blessed with two full days off–from work and, I hate to say it, but from Sirena too while my mom watched her on Monday and she was in preschool on Tuesday. These past two days have been incredible–I don’t have to worry about being anywhere, doing anything in particular, or anyone else’s needs but my own. I could nap when I wanted to (glorious I tell you!) and I’ve felt so relaxed the past two days, something that I guess I haven’t felt in a long (long) time that Kevin even noticed how different I’ve been acting. I appreciate this little baby Lucia for giving me at least two days to recharge and refuel, it’s been so nice. But I keep telling her that I don’t need too much time off before her arrival because I want to spend as much time of my maternity leave with her as possible. She’s the boss, though!

A few people in my family (including me) thought that Easter Sunday might be the day Lucia decided to make her grand appearance which, obviously, didn’t happen. I also thought she might decide to share a birthday with her Papa George (Kevin’s dad) which was yesterday and again that obviously didn’t happen. It’s funny how many people keep asking me where the baby is and if I’m still pregnant when we aren’t even at her due date yet but since Sirena was a week early and since Lucia dropped 1.5 weeks ago I guess it makes sense that everyone thinks she should be here any minute! I’m doing my best to just trust her and not get myself worked up as each day passes. During Sirena’s pregnancy, this was the last blog post I wrote before she was born. The following day (when I began week 39 which is tomorrow) my water broke and then she was born the following day (so Thursday of this week). Crazy! These final weeks/days of pregnancy are a trip–so much anticipation and anxiety and excitement! Many times throughout the day I think, “This might be my last time __ before Lucia’s born” which trips me out. Trying to soak up these last days (hopefully just days) of being a mama of one and living this life as I know it.

I’ll end this blog post with a gratuitous photo of Sirena who climbed into Lucia’s Rock ‘n Play sleeper, pretended to drink from a toy bottle, all while wearing her “Big Sis” outfit, lol!


 Belly shot!


 Other pregnancy updates:

  • Total weight gained so far: 17 pounds
  • How I’m feeling physically: Overall pretty good! Still tired each day but as long as I get a little nap in the afternoon I’m good for the rest of the day. Another possible sign that her arrival is approaching is that for the past three days my pelvic bones have felt really sore like things are loosening up in preparation for childbirth.
  • Fun baby developments: She measures around 20 inches and weighs somewhere in the 7-8 pound range but who really knows until she’s born!
  • Days until our next prenatal appointment: 2!
  • Days until due date: 8! (April 15)

A Baby Story [Part II]: Weeks 36 + 37

Week 36: Baby’s the size of a honeydew melon

We had our prenatal appointment this week and I’m soooo happy to report that Lucia’s in a heads-down position (woohoo!) The midwife wasn’t 100% certain just by touch so she busted out the ultrasound machine to verify that the hard bump she was feeling at the top of my uterus was her booty and not her head (lol!) Kevin got a good look at her round head but other than that, not much to report with the u/s itself. The midwife gave us our checklist of things to watch for in terms of signs of labor, when to call the office, what to bring with us, etc. and we made weekly appointments for the next 5 weeks (hopefully we won’t be needing all of those appointments!)

The past week I spent a long while making a master checklist and crossing items off one by one–things to take to the birth center, last minute baby items, postpartum recovery items–and I’m happy to report that just about everything has been purchased and put where it needs to be. One more week until we’re officially eligible to birth at the birth center but as of now at least we’re ready to go when the time comes!

The last big thing we did this week was take some maternity/family photos. I asked my sister Jessie to snap some shots of us and we used good ol’ Pinterest as inspiration for some of the shots and I am so so so happy with how they turned out. Here are my faves:





We can’t wait to meet you, baby girl!


Belly shot!




Week 37: Baby’s the size of a four grapefruits

This week started off with our 37 week prenatal appointment and Sirena and Grandma both came along–Sirena wanted to hear the baby’s heartbeat and Grandma wanted to check out the birth center before the big day! Midwife Alison asked Sirena if she wanted to help her listen to the heartbeat and Sirena enthusiastically said yes. She got to hold the handheld fetal heart doppler, turn it on, and hang onto it while the midwife searched for the heartbeat. She smiled so big when we finally heard it and she agreed that it sounded like a little helicopter in my belly. My belly is measuring slightly behind schedule but there’s no concern there. Everything is looking good (blood pressure, weight, baby’s heart rate, etc.) and I’m just so happy that we made it to this point so that we’re officially eligible to birth at the birth center!

My co-workers threw me a little baby shower which was so thoughtful and it was a nice little celebration in my second to last week of work. This week was also one of the more stressful weeks at work that I’ve had in a long time and I’m glad it’s now behind me. I’m training two people to take over for me while I’m on leave which is great but it was also overwhelming trying to think of everything I do and everything they need to know while also not being able to do the normal day-to-day work that was still needing my attention. I’m so looking forward to putting my out-of-office message on for the next 3ish months! 🙂

The big news this week is that Lucia has most definitely dropped! When I sit down it feels like she’s sitting right on top of my lap and it’s hard to bend straight over, I have to bend my knees outwards to make room for my belly. The pressure on my bladder is also super intense–not 30 minutes after I go to the bathroom I feel this intense urge to pee again because she’s pressing down directly on it. Sirena dropped one week before her birth. As I write this post it’s been a week since she dropped so we’ll see how long she’ll hang down low with her mama!

I read and reread the second half of Ina May’s Guide to Childbirth book three times the past few weeks which I cannot recommend enough to any pregnant woman (whether or not their goal is to have a natural, unmedicated birth). The second half of the book is filled with so much wisdom from “America’s leading midwife” Ina May and it has helped immensely in my ability to get me in the right head space while preparing for another natural birth. I am hopeful that with this knowledge, the affirmations I’ve written down from it and continue to read through, and with the support of the midwives at the birth center (such a vastly different environment than the hospital Sirena was born at) that not only will I be able to have another natural birth (I’m not too concerned about that) but that it will be a much more pleasant and rewarding experience and that my physical and emotional recovery from it will be a thousand times better. One affirmation that I continue to repeat to myself and I know will go through my head over and over again during labor is: This is my healing birth.

Belly shot!

wk37This week she’s the size of 4 grapefruits…at 24 weeks she was the size of just one grapefruit. Check out the major difference in my belly from week 24!

Other pregnancy updates:

  • Total weight gained so far: 16 pounds
  • Fun baby developments: She is officially full-term!  Her most crucial functions are developed and now she’s just getting stronger and chubbier (just the way we like ‘em!)  She probably weighs 6.5 pounds and still measures around 20 inches long.
  • How I’m emotionally and physically feeling: I’m so tired all the darn time–sleep is hard to come by at night (at least long stretches of it without having to maneuver thisaway and thataway to get comfortable or having to get up to go to the bathroom) and I cannot stop my body from sweating like crazy all day long. I’ve felt like I’ve been on an emotional roller coaster lately too–some days I wake up super irritable and it’s hard to shake it off while other times I feel like I’m constantly on the verge of tears. Work has been beyond overwhelming and I’m hopeful that once I’m officially on maternity leave (see below) there will be some relief in the stress/emotional department.
  • Number of days left at work: One as of tonight!! Halle-freakin’-lujah.

A Baby Story [Part II]: Weeks 34 + 35

Week 34: Baby’s the size of a Butternut squash

Sirena has really stepped up into the big sister role this week. She bought Lucia her first birth day gift (a cute little stuffed zebra) and she can’t wait to give it to her when she’s born and they meet for the first time. <3

IMG_3917She told me, “I want to meet baby now,” this week and has been a bit impatient not knowing exactly when she gets to meet her. And this week Big Sister transitioned to a big girl bed! We would’ve kept her confined in a crib longer but we decided it’d be better for her to go through this major change now without the additional major life change of having a baby sister around.

Not much else this week in the baby department to be honest. A thought did cross my mind this week that I’m actually ready to not be pregnant anymore. With Sirena’s pregnancy I felt good through to the very end but this time around I just feel so much more physically strained and emotionally drained at times that I think I’m about ready for this chapter to be over (even knowing the craziness of life-with-a-newborn that is on the horizon!)

Belly shot!

No photo this week, oops!

Week 35: Baby’s the size of a coconut

This week was super busy for us, namely because we co-hosted a baby shower at our house and built a playhouse for Sirena (and Lucia) in preparation for the party! So many weeks of planning with my friend Brianne were rewarded with a really fun and enjoyable celebration with our family and friends.

The theme was “Little Miss Sunshine” (going off of the Italian translation of Lucia’s name which is “light”) and we mainly used yellow/pink/orange colors through all of our decorations.


Bri made Lucia’s name banner which will go over her changing table


Kevin’s beautiful three-layer ombre cake!

We had a little “photo booth” and some of the party goers took advantage…








Sophie’s message to Lucia: “I love Disneyland” (Gotta love the mind of an 8 year old!)



We played some fun (and hopefully not too cheesy) shower games: people wrote their “wishes for Lucia” on notecards and I’ll be putting them in her baby book. We froze tiny baby figurines in ice cubes and gave one to each guest to watch in their drinks while we opened gifts and the first three people whose baby floated to the top of the water were supposed to yell out, “My water broke!” And lastly we had people write messages to me and Kevin on diapers to entertain us during those middle-of-the-night diaper changes. Here were the three I chose as winners!


More photos of the party…













Our original ray of sunshine





The play house! We’ve still got to paint it and put all the finishing touches on it but at least the floor, walls and roof were up in time. 🙂


My partner-in-crime, Bri. I can’t thank her enough and this party honestly would not have happened without her!


The party favors–citrus hand sanitizers and baggies of chocolate dipped Oreos. We also had a fun sun-themed craft and ribbon wands we made for the kiddos, I just forgot to take pictures of them!

And finally some family-of-three-on-the-brink-of-family-of-four photos…



IMG_5416 - Copy


Even though this week has been the most stressful with work (preparing for my maternity leave) and preparing our house for the party (and not to mention hottest week in March EVER!) and even though by the time the party was over I was so physically exhausted, this week my thoughts on being pregnant have changed a bit compared to last week. I realized that this may very well be the last time I am ever pregnant and the last time I ever get to experience growing a life and being so physically connected to a baby and with that thought I determined to do my best to enjoy every minute of it. <3

Belly shot!


IMG_3915Our non-furry daughter wanted to photo bomb this week’s belly shot!

Other pregnancy updates:

  • Total weight gained so far: 15 pounds. I’ve officially passed the total weight gained during Sirena’s entire pregnancy, which was 14 pounds total!
  • Fun baby developments: She measures around 20 inches now and weighs a little over 5 pounds.  At this point she probably won’t grow much longer so all of her attention will be focused on packing on the pounds! Her kidneys and her sense of hearing are fully developed and at this point all she’s got left to do is allow her lungs to mature.  She keeps her eyes open most of the time while she’s awake and only shuts them when she’s sleeping, and she can now determine the difference between sweet and sour tastes in the amniotic fluid surrounding her.
  • Random fact: It was at 35 weeks during Sirena’s pregnancy that I finished student teaching! I can’t even imagine having that crazy schedule working full-time, student teaching half-time, and going to school half-time this far into the pregnancy. I must’ve been on drugs! But I do fondly remember my time with those 6th and 7th grade knuckleheads (who are 9th and 10th graders now, ahhh!) and I remember how much they enjoyed “bonding” with Sirena as she grew in my belly while I was working in their classroom.
  • Number of weeks left at work: 3 (including this week!) Things are crazy right now as I prepare for a couple of people to take over my job duties and tying all of the loose ends up and I am so looking forward to signing off that last time for 3 months of maternity leave.
  • Days until our next prenatal appointment: 2! We may get an ultrasound if the midwife can’t determine by touch if she’s in a head down position or not. After this appointment we’ll be meeting with the midwives once a week. It’s really happening!

A Baby Story [Part II]: Weeks 32 + 33

Week 32: Baby’s the size of a Squash

We’re at the 8 month mark, folks! Only 1.5-2 months to go…I can’t believe it.

Really not too much to report this week in the baby department other than the fact that Kevin and I have gone into nesting overdrive! Our friends Celia and Chris gave us their old changing table and our friend Kim let us borrow her glider which prompted us to clean out our room, move our dresser into the closet, and make a little corner specifically for Lucia at least for those initial months of middle-of-the-night diaper changes and feedings. We still need a lamp and some baskets to put under the dressing table so that we can bring out all of the ridiculously small and cute baby clothes and start filling ’em up.  Sirena and I bought our first box of size 1 diapers (they’re so itty bitty!) so we’re ready for her to arrive any day now (but PLEASE don’t come this early, baby girl!)

This week Lucia seems to have turned the thermostat way up in this body of mine because I have been so overheated lately. I experienced the same thing during Sirena’s pregnancy around this time and it is intense! In addition to this typical third trimester physical change, I’m also experiencing crazy exhaustion again and a whole lot of uncomfortable pulling and tugging on my belly with the weight of this bundle I’m carrying. I can’t stand for too long without needing to lean over and relieve the pressure from my belly and it takes a lot to get comfortable sitting and laying down too. These adorable babies sure make their mamas work hard to meet them! 🙂


Belly shot!


Week 33: Baby’s the size of a pineapple

Kevin and I started out this week with a prenatal appointment and everything is looking juuuust fine. My belly is measuring right on schedule and her heartbeat sounds perfect. My mom accompanied me to an event hosted by the birth center called “Meet the Midwives tea” which is an opportunity for all third trimester mamas to meet all of the midwives in case we hadn’t met all of them during our prenatal appointments. I’m really glad my mom was able to go and experience it with me because, like with Sirena’s birth, she’s going to be present for the birth and it gave her a great chance to have some of her questions answered and understand what to expect with a birth center birth (versus a hospital birth).

On a personal note, I realized that my stress levels were getting out of hand this week and that I needed to chill out not just for my sake but for Lucia’s sake too. Anyone who really knows me knows that I have to keep myself busy and I’m always gogogo. Even at almost 8.5 pregnant, I don’t keep myself from being out in the yard weeding, planning a baby shower, working full-time, all while doing my best to keep up with my busybody toddler Sirena. It came to a head this week and I basically had an emotional meltdown with Kevin which led to an increase in Braxton Hicks contractions–this really started to worry me as an increase in contractions are a sign of pre-term labor. I kept close track of them and they returned to the usual 1-3 times a day occurrence within a day which I was so relieved about. Even though babies born this early are generally healthy and turn out fine, she’s got a lot of major developing to continue in utero and I really hope she stays put at least until 37 weeks (I won’t be a candidate for the birth center before 37 weeks and will have to deliver at the hospital which is not something I am interested in doing again). I realized that I need to keep my stress levels in check so that she feels that my belly is a safe place to continue to be and grow in.

On a lighter note, I made some major developments in her nursery (I mean, corner-of-our-bedroom-dedicated-to-baby space). I pulled out all of Sirena’s baby clothes, washed her 0-6 mos clothes, organized them into the baskets under her changing table, and put up some artwork (the artwork wall is still a work in progress).


Belly shot!

No photo this week, oops!

Other pregnancy updates:

  • Total weight gained so far: 13 pounds
  • Number of times Lucia gets hiccups each day: At least 1-2 times!
  • Fun baby developments: She weighs around 4.5 pounds and measures approximately 17 inches, she’s keeping her eyes open while awake, and her bones are hardening. She’s got fingernails, toenails,and real hair a this point!
  • Days until Lucia’s + big-sister-to-be Sirena’s celebration (baby shower): 9!

Family trip to Maui, Hawaii!

We had been looking forward for months to a last hurrah before baby Lucia makes her arrival–a family vacation to Maui, Hawaii!  Kevin’s mom and our good family friend Judy joined us.  We were finally going to use Kevin’s flight benefits for the airlines he works for and we were anxiously watching the flights to/from Maui to see how booked they were getting as the days passed.  It was our first time flying standby and it’s a tricky business: we had to book our lodging for the week and hope beyond all hope that we’d be able to get a flight there to even use the lodging we paid for (and on the flip side, hope that we’d make it home okay and not have to stay a night in the airport or a cheap motel near the airport!).  We had to pay in full a couple of months in advance (because so many places were getting booked up) and there weren’t many good options for places that would give us an actual refund if we didn’t show so it really was like playing the lottery in a way.  Luckily, it all worked out beautifully and we ended up having 50 extra seats on the way home and over 100 extra seats on the flight there so we were given a row to ourselves!

We enjoyed seven nights and eight days in paradise and it was a wonderful way to kick off the third trimester of Lucia’s pregnancy and to enjoy our little family of three before our newest addition joins us.

Tuesday, Jan 27

We were up and at ’em at 4:30am getting our final things together so we could be at the airport by 7am.  Sirena had been looking forward to getting on the airplane for weeks now so the whole way to the airport we were talking to her about how much fun we were about to embark on (this girl loves her airplanes!)  The flight was just shy of 6 hours long which is the longest flight she’s been on and she was a real trooper, even snoozing on Daddy for about an hour.


Enjoying her first in-flight movie! “Book of Life”


So happy to have arrived! On the shuttle to pick up our rental car

We rented a sweet ride for our trip…a Jeep convertible!  I was grateful to be able to sit shotgun for the majority of the time (I could not be squished in the backseat with the car seat the whole trip with my big ol’ belly and Dorothy and Judy agreed) but the times that I did ride in the backseat I could empathize with D & J that the backseat wasn’t nearly as comfy as the front seat.  So next time around we may need to reconsider our car choice!  But the convertible top and the way it handled rough terrain were really great.

After getting to our condo (a nice little 2 bedroom place a 1/2 mile from the beach in the town of Ka’anapali, just north of Lahaina) and unpacking our bags, we decided to have an early dinner at the Maui Brewing Co (which had yummy food and drinks, just crazy steep prices for any little add-ons which at other places would be included at no-cost).  After dinner and on our drive back to the house, we made a quick stop at the tiniest little beach just south of Pohaku Park.  We wanted to watch the sunset and thought this little patch of sand and beach would be a great backdrop.  To our astonishment, after jumping down onto the sand from the lava rocks bordering the beach and the highway, we were greeted by two exhausted sea turtles taking a break just on the shore (we were feet away from jumping on top of one of them, we had no idea it was there!)  It was the most incredible way to spend our first evening in Maui, watching the sunset and enjoying the company of two beautiful creatures.




Splashing her toes in the warm(ish) Hawaiian waters for the first time!

Wednesday, Jan 28

Hawaii is two hours behind California time (at this time of year, they don’t observe Daylight Savings Time so half of the year they’re three hours behind us) so we were all bright-eyed-and-bushy-tailed at the ungodly hour of 4:30am!  After hanging out at the house for a bit we decided to venture out and we were the first customers at Slappycakes, a fun restaurant where you cook your pancakes at your table.  After a yummy breakfast we went to Safeway to buy some groceries so that most of our lunches and about half of our dinners could be eaten at home so we could save some money.  After dropping our groceries off, we turned right around to enjoy the mid-morning at Launiupoko Beach Park–a toddler’s swimming paradise!  It had a tiny little wading beach blocked by rocks that let ocean water come in gradually and didn’t get more than 2-3 feet deep.  Sirena had a blast playing with her bucket and sand toys (thank you, Auntie Judy!) and testing her swimming legs in the warm waters.




We went back to the house so that Sirena could enjoy a much-needed nap while Dorothy and Judy went down to the beach closest to our house.  We kept the evening pretty low-key with a BBQ dinner at home and then took to the main drag of Lahaina (the only real downtownish area on the island), Front Street, to watch the sunset, window shop, and enjoy the first (of many) Hawaiian gelatos.





Our only group photo on the trip!


Incredible sunset, amiright?!


It’s official: Sirena loves gelato.


Can’t ask for a better view while eating gelato!


Thursday, Jan 29

Thursday was set aside for our big travel day…we were going to drive the infamous Road to Hana!  (Kevin was so looking forward to this day…he LOVES driving, especially windy, gravelly roads…and especially in a convertible Jeep). We woke up really early (jet lag was working in our favor that day) and set out mid-morning.

IMG_4960Our sweet ride


View from our convertible top

We followed along closely with the “Maui Revealed” guidebook that Kevin bought a year or two ago which talked about both the super popular spots and the not-so-well-known gems along the road, using the mile markers to point them out. The first part of the drive there were a ton of overlooks to stop at and take photos of the breathtaking coastline.


Looking out onto Honomanu Bay

We took a hidden dirt road (thanks to the guidebook) down to Honomanu Bay and enjoyed stretching our legs on the black sand (rocky) beach.

IMG_4968Girl on a mission with giant stick in her hand


Throwing rocks in the ocean, her favorite


She even got Mama and Grandma in on the action. Kevin took this series of photos as we threw our rocks into the ocean.


Proof that Kevin was on the trip, haha!

The Road to Hana during the peak tourist season is well known for incredible waterfalls around every turn. The guidebook warned that at certain times of year (come to find out, late January…) there isn’t much water flow to speak of for a lot of the waterfalls they describe and we quickly found that out after trying to get our eyes on a bunch of them. That just means we’ll have to come back, I guess…

At the urging of the guidebook, we took a small road into Ke’anae Peninsula and village for some awesome views and delicious banana bread and shave ice at Aunty Sandy’s roadside stand. Across the street from Aunty Sandy’s was a beautiful spot to take photos of the crashing waves against jagged lava boulders which we spent some time at before indulging ourselves in the sweet stuff.




Sirena mimicking the crashing waves


Walking the rock wall to Aunty Sandy’s (and hugging her baby Honey real tight)





Um…delicious. This was our favorite shave ice on the island that we tried this trip.

We got back on the road and shortly thereafter were met with tons of red brake lights just ahead. We had heard at Aunty Sandy’s that there was a lot of construction going on and that the road might be closing at some point but we didn’t think it’d be so soon! We were stopped for a few minutes before we started seeing some cars up ahead turning around and talking to each car on the way back. The driver told us that they were closing the road and that we should all just head back. We were so bummed!! We thought we’d wait it out a bit and the poor fools who listened to that guy really missed out because not 5 minutes later did they start letting traffic through (no joke!)

IMG_3701So glad we didn’t listen to that haole! 😉

From the Hana Highway section of the guidebook, one of the places I was really keen on visiting was Ching’s Pond. Most drivers don’t even notice the amazing waterfall and swimming hole just below the road but with the help of the guidebook we knew where to pull over and make our way down an extremely steep hill to this real gem. One of my favorite things is to swim in rivers and swimming holes like this (even more so than the ocean to be honest) so I was beyond excited to check it out. Of course the water was freeeeeezing so I hesitated quite a bit before being urged by Judy to get in the water already because she knew I’d end up regretting it later. Kevin jumped in first and Sirena joined the both of us for a 10 minute dip in the super refreshing waters.


My idea of paradise



We enjoyed our lunch on the rocks and were pleasantly surprised (or horrified, depends on which of us you’re talking about!) to be entertained by a guy who climbed up to the bridge where cars would pass and proceed to jump 25 feet down into Ching’s Pond below. We had read in the guidebook that if you were lucky you’d get to see some locals do it but it urged extreme caution because there is literally zero margin for error with this jump. The guy we saw did it twice and we all held our breath each time his feet left the platform!

IMG_5027Can you see the crazy man jumping? He’s just to the left of the bridge, in the center of the photo

I have to mention at this point that Sirena had been a bit under the weather a few days leading up to our trip. She was sniffly and congested off and on but we took our chances and she had been doing pretty well up until this point, just a little extra clingy with me. Our Road to Hana trip took a turn for the worst about 20 minutes after Ching’s Pond when we made a pit stop at Hana Bay. Sirena started complaining about her “owie, ear” and Kevin and I immediately freaked out that she had an ear infection that we had previously been clueless about. I picked her up and held her for about 10 minutes and she was crying and complaining about her ear and we couldn’t seem to distract her. Hana Bay is basically at the complete opposite end of the island from our condo so we were feeling really screwed but not totally hopeless at this point because although she was upset, she wasn’t out of sorts (…yet).  We were kicking ourselves for not bringing the Tylenol that I had so thoughtfully packed from home but left at the condo (because why would we need Tylenol on the Road to Hana?!) but we thought that she had been in such good spirits and was such a trooper that things should be manageable. Boy, were we wrong.

This is the part of the trip that we lovingly call “The Road from Hell.” We were in basically the most desolate part of the island on the roughest, bumpiest, most windy part of the Hana Highway. There were no towns, no drug stores, NOTHING for two hours. Sirena was in complete and utter turmoil for the entire 2 hours we were on that part of the drive–she tried so hard to fall asleep but every damn bump and turn would wake her up and she’d be screaming out in pain. Each time she’d wake up she’d cry out, “Hold me, Mommy! Hold me, Mommy!” over and over again and all I could do was hold her hand and try to comfort her as best as I could squished in the backseat next to her (and Judy helped with trying to comfort her as best she could squished on the other side of the car seat). The drive was pure torture, that is no exaggeration at all. We were all so utterly helpless–all we could do was keep driving as fast as we could to just get to the next damn town where they had an Emergency Room we could take her to. As we were approaching the town of Kula, Sirena changed her tune from, “Hold me, Mommy!” to, “Save me, Mommy” and it absolutely broke all of our hearts. We finally made it to Kula and followed the signs to a windy road up the hill a bit to the hospital. As we turned the corner I started to freak out a bit because it was getting dark and the hospital looked like it came straight out of a scary movie (looked like an old insane asylum!) Once we saw the ER it looked a bit more normal but I was starting to question our decision to go to this hospital to be honest! Turns out it was a beautiful hospital with an incredible view and we were in and out of ER in…get this…thirty minutes.



Squeezing Daddy so tight

The doctor was great and gave Sirena some much-needed Tylenol which worked quickly and eased her incredible pain. We drove about 10 minutes to the closest pharmacy and picked up a prescription for her ear infection. From Kula we had another 45 minutes but luckily at this point the road was smooth and fairly straight so Sirena was able to pass out for the remainder of the drive and stayed asleep until we got to the condo and quickly passed back out for the night.

The grown-ups stayed up a bit to unwind from a crazy stressful day with late night pizza and beer/wine. What…a…day.

Friday, Jan 30

For good reason, we took it easy on Friday to let Sirena recover from such a traumatic experience and heal up as best as she could. We headed out to Kapalua Beach for some snorkeling for the grown-ups and wading in the water/playing in the sand for Sirena.

IMG_3712You’d think she hadn’t just had the worst day of her life the day before…

IMG_5031The only photo we took of Kapalua Beach (Judy’s in the middle on her floatie!)

Only Kevin, Judy and Dorothy went out snorkeling this day and they say it wasn’t the best waters for snorkeling. In fact, there was some gnarly coral that banged ’em up pretty good (I won’t name names 😉 ). Yikes!

Sirena passed out in the car just as we left the beach and so the grown-ups got lunch to go from a mixed plate spot that had great reviews. It did not disappoint! Super yummy, local food. Just what the doctor ordered.

We had a relaxing afternoon at the house and took to Lahaina for dinner at Cheeseburger in Paradise. My mom’s husband’s daughter (you following?) is the niece of the owners of this chain of restaurants (I lost you, didn’t I?) so we were excited to check it out (and had a super helpful VIP gift card that Steve let us have to help pay for our meal, thank you Steve!) There was a musician playing great music during the meal, we had a great view of the moon over the ocean behind us, and the food was yummy so it was a great choice! And we finished off the (what turned out to be a super late) evening with some window shopping and yummy gelato.

IMG_3722In front of Cheeseburger in Paradise


You can’t really tell but Sirena is actually wearing the souvenir we bought for Lucia…an 18 mos shirt! I couldn’t believe it when I walked in the room and she had it over her head, haha. We proceeded to buy her a matching one, this time a size 3T. 😉



A giant flip flop is just asking to be climbed on, right? She then proceeded to put it on the ground and pretend it was a surfboard, entertaining the two shopkeepers. Hah!

Saturday, Jan 31

After a fairly laid back day and how well Sirena was doing we decided to do another big trip (this time with her antibiotics and plenty of Tylenol on hand) on Saturday. Our destination? ‘Iao Needle with lots of stops along the way.

IMG_5080Kevin in his happy place

IMG_5034Talk about an incredible coastline

Our first stop on our West Maui excursion was to Nakalele Blowhole–described by the guidebook, “the ocean here has undercut the shoreline, pounding underneath the lava shelf, where it spits through a human-sized hole in the lava. The blowhole varies tremendously with the tide and size of the surf” and we were lucky that we got here on a good day. There was plenty of action from the blowhole even as high up as we were (we weren’t feeling adventurous enough to walk all the way down with Sirena). The sign at the top of the hill said, “Warning: Stay clear of blowhole. You can be sucked in and killed. This is NOT a water park.” You don’t have to tell us twice with a pregnant lady and a toddler!



Checking out the blowhole down below


Thar she blows! (You knew that was coming, right?)




Shortly after the blowhole, the road narrowed dramatically to one lane and began its extremely windy ascent up through the mountains. For this whole part of the drive, we had to keep our eyes peeled for oncoming cars and yield to them as best we could on the side of the highway. You could tell who was a local and who was a tourist by the speed with which people took those turns. Some of those people were insane!




We came across an overlook a few miles from where we parked to walk to the blowhole and we got a great birds-eye view of it:


Incredible view of the road ahead!

At the urging of the guidebook, we kept our eyes peeled every turn for a tiny little village called Kahakuloa which claimes to have…get this…the “best banana bread in the world.” Lots of small roadside stands sell banana bread but the guidebook claimed that the banana bread at Julia’s roadside stand was hands-down the best so you know we had to check it out. Turns out not only was the banana bread the bomb, they also sold an amazing coconut candy and a passion fruit butter to spread on (thick!) on the slice of banana bread. Heaven!!


Sirena enjoying her coconut candy and the view of the taro fields below Julia’s stand



View of Kahakuloa Village as we made our way up the mountain again

We made another stop a few miles up the mountain at the Kaukini Gallery filled with beautiful art/souvenirs/jewelry…and a much-needed restroom!  After that point the windy, narrow road widens and straightens out into a two car highway and we made our way to Central Maui for the main attraction: the ‘Iao Needle in the town of Wailuku.


View of the ‘Iao Valley


Before making our way up the many stairs to the ‘Iao Needle lookout, we had a nice picnic lunch on the grounds and enjoyed the overcast weather for a change with about 5 minutes of sprinkling. Such an incredible spot for lunch and taking in the awe-inspiring sights.




It was a good hour of driving through the central part of Maui and back up along the West Maui coast back to our house and luckily Sirena napped most of the way. We were itching for some more beach time and pulled over at Mile Marker 14 for what we heard was some incredible snorkeling. Turns out the snorkeling was just meh but the beach and water itself was calm and warm and basically perfect to end our day.



We had a BBQ dinner at home and could barely keep our eyes open past 9pm so we called it a night!

Sunday, Feb 1

We had another chill day planned for Sunday (aka Super Bowl Sunday for people who actually enjoy football, haha). Kevin, Sirena, Dorothy and I took a drive to a coffee farm and to the now closed Sugar Cane Train to take some fun photos of Sirena on an abandoned train (one of her faves). We did a little souvenir shopping, had a coffee, and went back to the house so Sirena could nap…but she didn’t (it’s like she knew her time in Hawaii was running out so she wanted to enjoy every last minute of it!)


IMG_5154 IMG_5153






After a little lunching on our patio we decided to take a dip in the pool to take advantage and to spend some time as a family. I didn’t get any shots at the pool itself but here are some shots of our sun-kissed beauty around the complex after pool time:



Enjoying the view at lunch


Sirena’s third most favorite thing: MAPS!


Her new “silly face.” She does it all the time!


Showing us the way home

Before we left Maui we all wanted to make another sunset visit to Pohaku Park where we made the unexpected sea turtle discovery our first night on the island so we decided to do that this night. The turtles were out as we had hoped and we enjoyed watching the sunset on the little patch of sand with our new local friends.





Exploring the rocks


Auntie Judy showing Sirena something fun



After the sun set we made our way back out to Lahaina for some dinner. We had no idea that it would take us over an hour to find a place to eat! It was already getting late and we walked up and down Front Street trying to find a place that everyone wanted to eat, had decent reviews and had a nice ambiance, wasn’t ridiculously priced, and would seat us right away. We were starting to go nuts because we weren’t able to find a darn place when we finally stumbled upon Captain Jack’s that turned out to be a great dinner (and it was across the street from where we started our search, go figure!) After dinner we had another yummy gelato which made it allll better.

Monday, Feb 2

We started out fairly early that morning to take a drive down to South Maui on the west coast to check out some of the beaches near the docks where we’d go out on our whale watching/snorkel tour midday. On the way there we stopped at an overlook that was always super crowded because of the great vantage point for whale watching.

IMG_5290 IMG_5292 IMG_5294

We drove through the towns of Kihei and Wailea and found our way to Makena Beach for about an hour of swimming.





From the beach you could see Molokini Crater off in the distance where we’d be snorkeling just a few hours later!

After our quick beach trip we packed back into the Jeep and made our way back up the coast to the docks to climb aboard the Four Winds boat. The boat ride was at least an hour long and it covered some extremely choppy waters. I was having a hard time keeping comfortable holding onto Sirena (and trying to keep her from flying off the bench) and keeping my own huge pregnant belly from jumbling around too much. I kept a close eye on the Molokini Crater (our final destination) and hoping that we’d get there sooner rather than later! There were some whales spotted on the way there but I wasn’t able to focus too much on them under the circumstances but Kevin got some good shots of them:

IMG_5317Captain Judy at your service!

IMG_5351 IMG_5383 IMG_5326 IMG_5332

Once we docked at Molokini Crater (which is actually pretty rare for the afternoon snorkel trips, most days the afternoon tours have to go somewhere else because the weather doesn’t cooperate so we were very lucky to get out there!) the waters were extremely calm and incredibly clear and blue. Sirena and I stayed on deck the majority of the time, eating lunch and watching overboard while K, D and J snorkeled. Judy came back aboard when there were around 20 minutes to spare for snorkeling and offered me her wetsuit jacket so that I could take a dip which I appreciated so much! I hadn’t planned on snorkeling but it was so glorious and I’m really glad that I was able to get out there. Sirena even climbed down the steps (wearing a life jacket of course) and sat on the bottom step with me kicking her legs in the water and enjoying some “swim” time herself. It ended up being a really perfect afternoon.





We spent maybe 3.5 minutes at the glass bottom of the boat but it was cool while it lasted


The ride back to the docks was much more pleasant and I was able to actually enjoy the view!






Sirena decided to drive us home…

We finished the busy day out in the sun with a low-key dinner at home. About an hour before Sirena’s bedtime, Kevin and I finally made our way out for a “date night” while Dorothy and Judy helped put Sirena to bed. We didn’t do anything huge because we were both pretty exhausted and we still had some souvenirs to buy so we did some shopping, walked down Front Street holding hands (and not worrying about a toddler running around, what a relief!), and enjoying some gelato (for me) and shave ice (for Kevin). It was nice to have a couple of hours to ourselves before our trip came to an end the next day.

Tuesday, Feb 3

Our final day in Maui arrived and we spent the majority of the morning cleaning and packing. We left with just enough time to grab some lunch before heading to the airport. We could not believe that not 5 minutes from the airport and returning our rental car we got hit by another car! Long story short, there didn’t end up being any damage on our car (the other guy couldn’t claim the same) and we were able to leave with no issues at all (thank goodness!) The timing was unbelievable and I’m just so happy we didn’t end our trip on a bad note.

We got to the airport with about 10 minutes to hang out at the terminal. The flight home was not as easy going as the first (Sirena was exhausted and had a harder time napping but luckily she eventually conked out) and we finally touched down at LAX to make the last leg of the trip home. Home, sweet, home.





We had an amazing time in Maui but we really were so glad to be home. Can’t wait for our next family vacation…as a family of four!

A baby story [Part II]: Weeks 30 + 31

Week 30: Baby’s the length of a cucumber

This week we had another prenatal appointment with midwife Allison. Heartbeat sounds great and everything looks just fine! Nothing major to report from this appointment although we’re going to start seeing the midwives a lot more frequently now that we’re in the third trimester.

Something that I’m pretty sure has started up this week are Braxton Hicks contractions, something I don’t remember experiencing with Sirena’s pregnancy. My good ol’ uterus is practicing for the big day and it’s just sporadic, infrequent cramping that can be a bit uncomfortable in the moment but after a minute the feeling passes and things are back to normal. The 3am insomnia has resurfaced this week which is, in a word, annoying. I love when people say, “Make sure you get rest now before the baby’s born!” It’s my favorite thing to think about between 3-4:30am as I’m lying wide awake and nothing I do can get me back to sleep. 😉

One fun thing Lucia accompanied me to this week was “Dirty Dancing: The Musical” with the ladies in my family. We had such a good time and baby girl really enjoyed the music, especially the finale!

Belly shot!


Week 31: Baby’s the size of a pineapple

Now that our Maui, Hawaii family vacation is over (le sigh) it seems that things have kicked into high gear with getting serious about Lucia’s upcoming arrival. Kevin and I, along with our good friend Brianne, have been busy making preparations in a number of ways:

  • Party planning: Brianne has graciously volunteered to co-host a celebration for Lucia and big-sister-to-be Sirena. The theme is “Little Miss Sunshine” (going along with the translation of her name which is light) and I’m so looking forward to having close family/friends over to celebrate our girls with us.
  • Nesting: Kevin and I have been busy cleaning our house and making room for our little sunshine-in-the-making. We’ve gotten a couple of things from Craigslist (Rock n Play sleeper for one), a friend is passing along her changing table to us, and we’re in the market for a comfy, used glider/armchair (for the hours of nursing that are in my future). We’re going to make a little nook in our room for the changing table/glider which means we’ve got to move our dresser into our closet. We’ve got a plan for the next couple of weeks to get all of the baby stuff out of the garage to clean/inspect and start organizing it in our house.
  • Preparing for childbirth + recovery: Whether I like it or not (ha!) I’m going to be giving birth again in a couple of months. This week I got serious about preparing for this huge event by starting to reread “Ina May’s Guide to Childbirth,” writing down some affirmations to think about during labor, seriously exercising every day (I need to build as much strength as possible for the marathon-of-an-event I’m about to partake in!), and getting a list together of postpartum recovery needs to have on hand at the birth center and at home.

This week we celebrated Valentine’s Day which has never been a big day for me and Kevin but it has become something of note now that Sirena is around. She made her second set of homemade Valentine’s cards for her schoolmates and family and this year she was sure to make one for “her baby” (that’s how she refers to Lucia!):


These pregnancy hormones have kicked into full gear lately it seems (they say that happens a lot in the first and third trimesters) and I’ve been really emotional lately. It feels like my emotions are just under the surface for me and any little thing can get the tears flowing. The biggest thing for me lately has been the thought that my special Sirena + mama alone time is quickly coming to an end (I had the same sentiments about the special Lola + mama time before Sirena was born, come to think of it!) Believe me when I say that I am BEYOND excited to spend time with both of my girls in the near future and seeing the two of them together is going to melt me to smithereens. But I know that the beautiful relationship I have with Sirena is undoubtedly going to change with the new addition to our family and it makes me just a bit sad and nostalgic thinking about it. I’m trying to enjoy every little moment with this blonde-haired, chatty, goofy, sweet knucklehead as much as possible while I’ve got her all to myself. 🙂

Belly shot!


My trusty sidekick right by my side

Other pregnancy updates:

  • Total weight gained so far: 10 pounds
  • Food cravings so far: NONE! A friend asked me what I’ve been craving and I couldn’t come up with anything. With Sirena I craved falafel/hummus and Vietnamese food. With Lucia, in the first trimester I craved meat (so weird) but that’s not happening any more and I haven’t really craved anything in particular. Hmmm…
  • Days until our next prenatal appointment: Seven
  • Fun baby developments: She weighs about 3.5 pounds and measures over 16 inches long…and she’s heading into a growth spurt.  All five of her senses are now in working order and she’s now strong enough to grasp a finger!

A baby story [Part II]: Weeks 28 + 29

Week 28: Baby’s the size of a Chinese cabbage

This week was pretty low-key in the baby department. I did the dreaded 3-hour glucose screening–fasting from midnight on through noon, drink the yummy (ahem, sarcasm) glucola drink, get blood drawn, sit in lobby without being able to walk around, eat, or even drink water for the next three hours as I went in another 3 times to get my blood drawn. I had this feeling that I was going to be diagnosed with gestational diabetes because I was so extremely lethargic and soooo thirsty sitting there in the lobby (compared to during the 3-hour test during Sirena’s pregnancy when I remember just being so hungry and bored out of my mind). There was a lot on the line this time around because if I was given the diagnosis and I wasn’t able to keep my blood sugar levels in check, I wouldn’t be a candidate for the birth center which would be so extremely disappointing. I received the results from the screening just a day later and I am so happy to report that the test came back great so I’m in the clear (insert huge sigh of relief)!!

The only other thing of note that happened this week was that I flew to the Bay Area for the day for a work meeting. Leaving the house before 6am and getting home at 8:30pm I was exhausted and I’m just glad that day is over! It was a bit surreal leaving the meeting and my Bay Area co-workers telling me “Good luck with the birth!” because the next time they’ll see me I’ll be the mama of two…whoa!

Belly shot!

No photo this week, oops! (Seems to be a trend lately!)

Week 29: Baby’s the size of a butternut squash

Lucia had an incredible adventure this week…we took a family vacation to Maui, Hawaii! One full week on such a beautiful island, filling our time with lots of warm, sandy beaches, amazing drives through the mountains and forest, gobbling sweet, juicy pineapple every day, snorkeling in the clearest, bluest waters, and lots of scrumptious gelato and shaved ice (Mama knows what keeps this baby happy! 😉 ) More about the trip in a separate post with lots and lots of photos…coming soon! She seemed to really enjoy the trip because for the first time in the pregnancy she began pushing out some part of her body and leaving it there for a bit for me to give her a little massage. She’s now done it just about every day and it warms my heart that I can feel her so close instead of being just this abstract idea of a baby in there. 😉

Upon our return, I was met with one of the loveliest, sweetest gifts I’ve ever received: Lucia’s grandpa (my father-in-law) bought me a bouquet of flowers and had a special card that was acknowledging that I survived a vacation carrying around and caring for not one but two babies around the island. It was such a thoughtful gesture and it was so nice to be acknowledged like that. Lucia, you sure picked a good family to join, I tell ya!

Belly shot!


Talk about the perfect backdrop for a weekly pregnancy photo…sigh.

No Lola photo bomb this week obviously (although I wish we could’ve taken her to Maui!)

Other pregnancy updates:

  • Total weight gained so far: 8 pounds
  • Fun baby developments: She’s around 15 inches long and weighs around 2.5 pounds (and she’s going to triple in weight before birth!)  And she is hopefully beginning to settle into the proper birthing position (head down, facing my back).
  • Days until our next prenatal appointment: 5
  • Number of childbirth preparation books I checked out from the library: 2 (better start refreshing my memory now since the big day is just around the corner!)

A baby story [Part II]: Weeks 26 + 27

Week 26: Baby’s the size of a head of lettuce

A lot was going on in Lucia’s world this week, namely, opening weekend for her Nani’s play “Shadows”! I helped produce the show, Uncle Derdo directed and was the lead male actor in the play, and Nani wrote the play, was the props master and costume director, and produced the play so it was a wild time for our family the past four months and we were so excited (and relieved!) to finally see opening night arrive and go over so well. Seeing the play again after 15 years and being in such a different place in my life (I was in high school the last time the play was produced), I was overcome with pride in my mom and in my family. It means so much to me that because of my mom, not only do I have some amazing stories of my family that I otherwise would never have known but I also have it in a visual performance where my family members, some of whom I never met, really came to life right before my eyes. Means the world to me and hopefully will be treasured by Lucia, Sirena and any other kiddos we might have in our family. 🙂

Now back to Lucia: I’ve come to the conclusion that this little girl moves a LOT more than Sirena did when she was in my belly. Lucia jiggles my belly around all day long and gets me with some major jabs and belly rolls a few times a day. I have yet to catch it on film (I need to keep our camera handy!) but hopefully soon. She also seems to stick around reaaaally low most of the day and night. It can feel really uncomfortable where my pants rest on my low abdomen and I find myself having to resituate myself (or my waist band!) to get some relief from her pushing down.

I’ve also noticed that clothes do not fit me the same as they did with Sirena’s pregnancy. It’s obvious that my belly has grown a lot more quickly this time around but even shirts and leggings that I wore through to the end of Sirena’s pregnancy (when I was a lot larger than I am now) just aren’t fitting the same even now. I’ve had to purchase a few more maternity shirts and a new couple of pairs of stretchy pants to feel more comfortable on a daily basis. Hopefully these will last for the next 3 months!

The only other news with the pregnancy is that so far I haven’t developed linea negra (a brown line from navel to top of pubic bone that is temporary) like I did during Sirena’s pregnancy by now and so far I’ve still got an actual belly button! It’s becoming more and more shallow by the day so I think its days are numbered. 😉


Belly shot!

No photo this week, oops!

Week 27: Baby’s the size of a cauliflower

We started off this week with a prenatal appointment. We met with a new midwife, Vicki, so it was nice to be able to get to know another midwife who may end up being the one present at our birth when the time comes. The ever-exciting glucose screening was at this appointment and a few days later I received the same potentially disappointing news that the test levels came out a bit high and so I’ll need to go in for the longer 3-hour glucose screening next week. Fingers crossed I’m not diagnosed with gestational diabetes but of course we’ll face that if it comes to that!

Things are starting to get more and more real with the impending birth and arrival of Lucia…the midwife talked to us about preterm labor signs and starting next week I need to start keeping a kick count (to make sure she’s keeping active throughout the third trimester). Third trimester starts next week…ahhh! So much to do and now it’s really getting to be crunch time.

Fun fact: Next week during Sirena’s pregnancy is when I chopped all my hair off. I’m considering doing it again…guess it’s a third trimester pregnancy thing??


Belly shot!



My shadow seems to have returned!

Other pregnancy updates:

  • Total weight gained so far: 7 pounds
  • Fun baby developments: She weighs about 2 pounds and is around 14.5 inches long, she’s beginning to show brain activity, she’ll take her first peek around this week while her blinking reflex begins, and she probably recognizes my voice!
  • Number of days until our family vacation/babymoon to Hawaii: 6! We are so excited!