36 Weeks: New Jersey Baby Shower

A month to go?! Time is flying by and the baby could be here any day! 

Our 36th week was very special because we traveled to New Jersey for the long weekend and my second baby shower (lucky me!). But let's start at the beginning of the week. We had our 36 week ultrasound and doctor's appointment and the good news is that the baby is officially head down, which is a huge relief. I was also tested for Group B Strep, and we'll be getting those results back at our next appointment. Our doctor said that everything looked great, but that the baby is still relatively high so she thinks that we'll most likely make it all the way to our due date. I have to admit that I was sort of happy to hear that considering that I haven't packed my hospital bag and the nursery still isn't ready (we're making progress, but slowly). 

I also enjoyed my first ever prenatal massage this week and it was amazing. The massage practice has special beds made for pregnant women that have a hole in the center that allow pregnant women to lie on their stomach as they are being massaged. Lying on my stomach was very relaxing, and more importantly I think that the massage really helped with the pain in my piriformis. A big thank you to my mom for the great prenatal gift!!!

And now back to a recap of the baby shower! My mother-in-law and father-in-law were kind enough to host a second baby shower at their house for friends and family who live in the New York and New Jersey area. The weekend started off with a special dinner with family in honor of the baby, or "Pipsqueak", as it is sometimes affectionately called. My father-in-law cooked a delicious feast for all of us, including a prime rib roast with Yorkshire pudding and gratin potatoes. Here was the menu!:


We also opened a very special present that Brian's aunt brought with her---baby sweaters made by Brian's grandmother for her great grandchildren before she died. It was a complete surprise to both Brian and I, and a present that we will both treasure. We are very excited to be able to give the baby something made by his or her great grandmother.


On Sunday, the day of the shower, we woke up and finished some last minute details before the guests arrived. My mother-in-law decorated the entire first floor of the house with banners, balloons and baby shower activities. She even ordered a book for everyone to write baby advice in, and personalized m&m's and jars to give away at the end of the shower as the guests were leaving.


We also played a number of fun games, including a Baby Photo Quiz. Everyone was asked to submit a photo of themselves as a baby and we had to match each baby photo to the person. There was also a Baby Pool, in which everyone had to guess the baby's due date, weight and gender, and a nursery rhyme quiz (which I failed miserably - I guess I should brush up on my nursery rhymes before the baby arrives!).

We also asked everyone to participate in a Baby Play-Doh game, and awarded presents to the most creative play-doh baby, the ugliest play doh-baby, and the cutest play-doh baby.

In addition to the above activities, we ate a delicious lunch of quiche, salad, and fresh bread. And for dessert there was fruit tart, cupcakes, and my homemade rhinoceros sugar cookies (which were nowhere near as beautiful as the ones made by my sister at my DC Shower). 


After lunch I opened gifts. We received so many wonderful books from the book registry that we created, and Brian and I are excited to read both old favorites and new ones to the baby when he or she arrives. 

Overall, it was a truly great day, mostly because I was able to spend the day with family and friends, some of whom I have not seen in awhile. Brian and I have already been telling the baby that he or she is very lucky to have so many people who love and care about him or her.


And last but not least...

Here's what's happening with Baby Riley this week:

  • Baby Riley now weighs almost 6 pounds and is over 18.5 inches long (the size of a head of romaine lettuce).
  • He or she is considered "early term" right now
  • Baby Riley is shedding both the hair that covered his or her body and the vernix caseosa, the waxy substance that covered and protected him or her in the amniotic sac. The baby swallows this and it later becomes the meconium and the contents of his or her first bowel movement.

And what's happening with me:

Weight Gained: We're still hovering at 19-20 pounds and I strangely hadn't gained weight since our 34 week appointment so I've been making sure to eat more snacks. Hopefully we'll see some movement on the scale at our next appointment. In the meantime, the doctor is not overly concerned because the baby isn't measuring small. Brian on the other hand is making sure that I eat up!

Favorite Moment: This weekend overall, but especially receiving the sweaters that Brian's grandmother knitted for her great grandchildren as a surprise. 

Workouts: I've been going to the gym to do strength training and cardio and have also been adding in two days of prenatal yoga each week. The prenatal yoga that I attend is more of a stretching session than a workout, which is exactly what I need at this point. And this past weekend I went on multiple walks outside while we were in New Jersey instead of going to the gym.

Symptoms: Upper back pain (especially when I am sleeping), occasional tightness and pressure in the pelvis/abdomen depending on how the baby is positioned. I'm not really sure if it is Braxton Hicks contractions, but sometimes the pain or pressure stops me in my tracks and I have to stand still for a few minutes.

Food Aversions/Cravings: None, per usual.

Sleep: I am definitely waking up multiple times a night to re-position myself. I also slept horribly the other night because my body felt itchy ALL OVER, not just my stomach, but my back and legs, it was very strange.

Looking forward to: Our 37 week appointment, finishing up the baby's nursery, and enjoying a date night with Brian at a newish restaurant on Friday!