34 weeks, or 42 days to go!

Apologies for having to take a photo in a half empty room. It's the only one not cluttered with boxes :)

My sewing-room is the only one not cluttered with boxes ūüôā

How far along| 34 weeks
Baby‚Äôs Size| He’s suppose to weigh as much as a cantaloupe, but who knows. He’s feeling heavier these last few days, that’s for sure.
Weight Gain| I totally forgot to weigh myself.
Sleep| Husband is away so I’m not getting much of it. I hate sleeping in an empty house.
Clothes| Rocking a nice long-sleeved  maternity T this week. Love how comfy they are.
Cravings| Sandwiches. As I write this I am totally thinking about what I’m going to have on one for lunch.
Food Aversions| Leftovers and pasta sauce. The sauce brings on awful acid reflux.
Symptoms| My hands are a shade darker than the rest of me. What the…? Also, they have always been dry, but they are supa dupa dry this week.
Movement| One day he’s a kickboxer, another day he’s cool as a cucumber.
Belly Button| Still in.
Baby’s Sex| A Mini Greg.
Highlight of the Week| My husband is in Austin emptying out our storage container. Is it bad that I CANNOT wait to be reunited with our kitchen appliances? I love them so.
What I miss| My hips have been achy here and there and I’d love to sleep on my back or stomach. Just for a little while. I’m not asking for much. *Sigh*

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This week we took advantage of Amazon Mom’s 20% deal and ordered the baby’s stroller/car sear combo. Even though we will mostly wear him, we figured a stroller would be great to have on long outings. Speaking of wearing him; I ordered the needed rings to make him a sling. I cannot believe the amount of money that people charge for some fabric and some rings. Nutso! My friend shared a great source to use for when I sit down to make it. The instructions look simple enough. Here’s hoping I’m not eating my words later and end up paying $90 for a sling ūüôā

33 Weeks and 2 days-New Maternity Jeans

33 weeks and 2 days

How far along| 33 weeks and 2 days
Baby‚Äôs Size| Baby is supposed to be a little over 4 pounds by now but last week’s ultrasound showed he was running a little below average but within range. But I think he had a growth spurt since then because man, he is feeling heavy these last couple of days.
Weight Gain| Still +8 pounds. I did my fair share of eating last week, let me tell you. But I also walked a ton. My bestie came to visit and we hit San Francisco a few times and we walked loads.
Sleep| I’m averaging about 4/5 good days a week. Although, last night was not one of them. My lower back kept cramping. I kept waking, what seems every 10 minutes, to turn over.

Maternity jeans

Clothes| I officially grew out of my maternity jeans with the low panel so I refashioned a new pair. I decided on a high panel and it fits comfy. But I’m not sold on the jeans. Even though they fit, they feel a bit off. Maybe after a few wears I’ll decide if I like them enough to keep wearing them. Otherwise, hello leggings!
Cravings| Comfort foods. Since I’ve arrived in the U.S. all I want to eat is stuff from my childhood: sandwiches, sugary cereals, bagels, Chef Boyardee (I know, I know…). Oh and pickles. I’ve always hated pickles and suddenly I’ve turned into a clich√© and eat it on my burgers and sammies happily.
Food Aversions| Leftovers are still quite hard to stomach. There are quite a few in the fridge that need to be chucked away because I just can’t make myself eat them for lunch.
Symptoms| There’s a new one! Not sure if it’s pregnancy related but it sure is awful. I started getting a burning pain along my left hip joint. It truly feels as though someone is lighting a match against my skin. Signs point to a pinched nerve. Wonderful.
Movement| He’s starting to thump and move the belly.
Belly Button| Innie.
Baby’s Sex| A mister.
Highlight of the Week| I got to see bits of Chexie last week. He’s a bit too big to get a full photo of him so I had to settle on seeing his cute foot here and a fist there. So sweet. And the good news is that he’s head down, facing my spine. Here’s hoping he stays that way.
What I miss| Running. My neighborhood is a great place to go out for a nice short run. One day…

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Today I had a check up with the doctor. At separate times the nurse and the doctor both told me, “Not too much time left.” And I just about wanted to tell them to hush, I’m not ready yet and that I need more time!

Week 30-Settling in

30 weeks and 4 days
Standing in the soon-to-be nursery

Our home life is far from normal but we are working on making it so. We have been quite busy running around getting bits of furniture that won’t be coming in our sea shipment (chairs, a table, a bed, etc).

Our air shipment arrived but a lot of our kitchenware was broken. Our enameled Dutch oven was cracked through. It’s iron! How did they bloody well crack iron? And our mixing bowls, one of our favorite, most used wedding gifts, destroyed. Some plates-pulverized. Not kidding. They were almost all in a powdery form. These things were professionally packed so it’s beyond me what happened between our old flat, the airplane and our new place. Now we are having to fill out insurance forms, because you know, we didn’t have enough on our plates. What plates we have left ūüôā

Oh well. Christmas dinner was saved by buying some chairs and a table that will become a sewing table after we get our dining table from Austin. My in-laws are in town so that made the holiday more festive. They have been oh so helpful with a lot of the heavy lifting.

We have also been getting reacquainted with our lovely kitties. They stayed with the in-laws while we were abroad. The price to ship them from New Mexico was way too dear. So there they stayed and were spoiled rotten.

Kitty and the bump.

Kitty and the bump

But my Ludo seems to have forgiven me. He’s been quite affectionate, even if a bit needy in the mornings.

As for the bump, he’s moving with more force and is preferring my right side. You can feel him quite settled there. He moves often, some days more than others.

We got his dresser and am hoping to get more bits here and there as time goes along. We may be inheriting a family crib but it all depends on how much it’ll cost to get it shipped to us from New Jersey. If the cost is too much we will definitely just buy one. Luckily I have one in mind.

I recently bought a bunch of fabric to start making little clothes, blankets, bibs,and burp clothes. Not all of them will be for Chexie. A few of my good friends are expecting soon after me so I have to get their gifts sorted. If there’s extra I plan to add them to my Etsy shop, I figure why not?

Slowly but surely I can see the end of this move. There’s still the sea shipment to unpack and the Austin stuff to move but at least we have a roof over our heads.

We got the keys to the new place and a rainbow to celebrate.

A rainbow the day we got the keys to our new place

Dressing the Bump: Polka!

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With no tripod or computer in sight (they are still en route) I decided to post another iPhone bump pic. It’ll be my only source of photography for a bit.

Since I started sewing 2 years ago I rarely buy clothes so it was a big deal to get this polka dot chambray top. I went through a bit of guilt after buying it but soon got over it. I fell in love with it instantly and knew chances were low that I would make myself a maternity blouse anytime soon. And I’ve been wanting a button-up shirt for ages.

I bought it at Old Navy, the biggest size. Depending on how my body looks post baby I might refashion it to be a bit more slimming. But until then it’s super comfy.

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Thanks to everyone who shared their experience and suggested some questions I can ask my possible birth center and doctor. I feel quite informed and ready for our meeting tomorrow!

Me-Made Maternity Clothes Costs

Sewing my own clothes has made me quite comfortable in my skin. When you sew¬†you have to face reality, there’s no fudging numbers because the garment won’t fit if you do. You learn to accept that your bust measures this and your hips measure that. Those numbers are fact and help in making the garment, so I accept and embrace them. Learning¬†how¬†my body is shaped¬†allows me¬†to sew flattering clothes¬†that can feature¬†my assets well¬†and make me feel good while doing so. And who doesn’t¬†want to look and feel good when pregnant?

Sewing also allows¬†you¬†to save money at times, but not always. It’s all dependent on your materials and if you are okay spending time fitting and sewing your clothes. Labor aside, garments can be a bargain if you find your materials at a good cost. But sometimes it’s nice to splurge if you want to treat yourself, like I did when I made my first maternity dress using Liberty of London fabric.

Plus-size maternity clothes are now more readily available in stores and I’ve been tempted¬†to buy them, just for convenience. But because I enjoy sewing, have the time/patience and energy I figure why not make my own. I have to admit, that I am quite curious as to how much I am actually spending on my me-made maternity clothes. Am I actually saving money or am I spending too much?

Here’s a very basic¬†breakdown of costs per garment. I only included fabric and new materials purchased. I own a lot of notions (buttons, thread, elastic, etc) that I’ve bought at bargain prices over the last¬†two¬†years. I excluded them from costs because I use them for so many projects.

Dressing the Bump
Stripey Knit Skirt
Cost of fabric and materials: Free (the fabric was given to me and I had left over elastic from old projects)
Cost of pattern: £8 for a maternity skirt
Time it took to make: About 2 hours. Turning the waistband inside out took forever!
Total cost: You can argue £8 but I bought a new skirt to make the stripey one, so I say £4
Sew U Home Stretch Babydoll Dress
Jersey-knit Sleeveless Babydoll Dress
Cost of new fabric and materials: £16 for 2 meters of double-knit jersey fabric
Cost of pattern: Free! The Sew U Home Stretch book was given to me as a gift
Time it took to make: About 2 hours. A great simple pattern
Total cost: £16

Baby Doll Dress
Jersey-knit Babydoll Dress
Cost of new fabric and materials: £5 for 2 meters of remnant double-knit jersey fabric. Bargain!
Cost of pattern: Free! A Sew U Home Stretch pattern
Time it took to make: About 6 hours (grading/tracing the pattern and sewing)
Total cost: £5

Simplicity 1998
Jersey-knit Dress
Cost of new fabric and materials: £6 for 2 meters of remnant ponte-knit jersey fabric
Cost of pattern: £2
Time it took to make: About 8 hours (grading/tracing the pattern, fitting and sewing). This dress was a pill to fit by myself
Total cost: £8

Muslin #1 for Simplicity 8670 (vintage 1970)
1970s Maternity Dress
Cost of new fabric and materials: £12 for 2 meters of cotton poplin, £.80 for a zipper
Cost of pattern: £7 for a vintage 70s maternity pattern
Time it took to make: About 6 hours (grading/tracing the pattern, fitting and sewing)
Total cost: £ 19.80

Muslin #2 for Simplicity 8670 (vintage 1970)
1970s Maternity Dress
Cost of new fabric and materials: £12 for 2 meters of black poplin, £2 for remnant red mystery remnant fabric, £.25 zipper
Cost of pattern: £0, re-used vintage 70s maternity pattern
Time it took to make: 4 hours
Total cost: £14.25

Final version of Simplicity 8670 (maternity pattern) in Liberty cotton and Japanese lace
1970s Maternity Dress
Cost of new fabric and materials: £36 for 3 meters of Liberty fabric, £2.25 for half a yard of Japanese cotton lace, £.25 zipper
Cost of pattern: £0, re-used vintage 70s maternity pattern
Time it took to make: 4 hours
Total cost: £38.50

So I have to conclude that my costs aren’t nearly as high as they would be if I had¬†purchased similar maternity clothes. And I hope the costs¬†continue that way.

Do you keep a maternity clothing budget? Any thrifty tips to keep costs low?

Dressing the Bump: A Doughnut Run…Er…Walk

Dressing the Bump Collage

My husband and I recently discovered a local bakery that make the most divine fluffy chocolate-covered, chocolate-filled doughnuts. Heaven! I’m proud to say that I don’t indulge in them often and that I earn them. The walk to the bakery is a nice 40 minute walk round trip (uphill one way). When we arrive to the bakery I am always in desperate need for the toilet, water and that freaking doughnut. Stat!

I’m sad (or am I?) that we didn’t venture into this bakery earlier. But I appreciate the random trips here all the more since they are limited…Three weeks until moving day!

Hubbie was home to take my photo today so we took it outside, to the sunshine! I wore my simple, fast skirt that I made and wore earlier last week. I used an existing maternity skirt as a pattern. And what’s the cost of this skirt? ¬£4. I paid ¬£8 for the skirt I used as a pattern, so I essentially got two skirts for the price of one. The fabric was free. Win, win.

Dressing the Bump

Dressing the Bump- Feeling Teal

I love that a lot of my regular clothes are still wearable. For instance, this Gap dress I bought for a bargain ages ago. It definitely does the job: fits well, it’s comfortable and not too short. Layered up with a cardi makes it instantly warm enough for fall. Excuse the pink cheeks and pulled-back hairdo. I’m overdo for a haircut so I just pulled it back after showering this morning. Confession: I love it when I can pull it back and work the Robert Palmer Addicted to Love Video Girl look. It’s nice to be lazy sometimes.

Dressing the Bump-Week 22.2

I paired the dress with some teal tights and Toms. I hate these shoes. I am not going to lie. They are the biggest pain in the ass to put on. Even if I didn’t have a belly to work around I would find these quite difficult to put on. And these are the second pair to disappoint me. I’m not a TOMS fan. Rant over.

Dressing the Bump-Week 22

Being pregnant has made me reevaluate the clothes in my closet and rethink how I can wear them. I’m loving it! New life for old clothes.

And I love being pregnant. There. I said it. I LOVE it. Aside from the worrying that comes with it, I love the way my body feels, looks. But I am quite fortunate so far int hat I’ve had nothing serious to contend with (KNOCK ON WOOD), like morning sickness. My aches and pains remind me of the pains I suffered after long runs: satisfying. To me those aches are telling me, “Good going!” or “Keep at it!”. I hope against hope that my body keeps at it and doesn’t decide to bring on the pain and discomfort with the third trimester. Because, you never know.

Week 18-Where’s my bump?

Week 18 and still feeling quite chipper

How far along| 18 weeks and 2 days.
Baby’s Size| My baby is officially the length of a bell pepper. The cutest little bell pepper ever.
Weight Gain| Minus 4 pounds since I found out I was pregnant. I keep gaining and losing the same 1-2 pounds.
Sleep| Still meh. I have started sleeping through the night but I do wake up to toss and turn a lot. I just can’t get comfortable. I am considering investing in a maternity pillow. Trying regular pillows for now.
Clothes| Some clothes are snug around the bust and middle section but otherwise I can wear most of my clothes except for a few skirts and pants. Sporting maternity jeans in the photos.

Shouldn’t I have a bump by now?

Cravings| I would love some tea cakes or Mallomars. I blame it on watching the TV show, Great British Bake Off.
Food Aversions| Leftovers. Blergh.
Symptoms| Growing pains. I know Chexie is growing when my lower back starts hurting. And boy has it been hurting these past few days. Chexie is due to double in size between week 16 and 20.
Movement| During a scan I had yesterday they measured Chexie’s hand and it’s 1cm across. Can you imagine?! Chexie is still so tiny. But definitely quite powerful. S/he has gotten quite active. I think s/he will be quite the dancer.

A little something, something

Belly Button| Inside.
Gender| For a while I thought it was a definitely boy. But now I am wondering if it’s a girl. I blame a dream I had with the sweetest wee baby girl in it. But funny enough I still use male pronouns when referring to it.
Highlight of the Week| Being told this pregnancy is going A-Okay.
What I miss| Big cups of coffee. Although I still drink coffee here and there, it doesn’t compare to the 2 to 3 cups I was having a day. Coffee makes me happy and keeps me warm.

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This week I officially started getting together all the supplies to start making baby stuff. I’ve been in a sort of a dream world, thinking I had all the time in the world. In actuality I am almost half way through my pregnancy and haven’t made baby a thing. I guess I wanted assurance from the midwives and doctors that things were going well before diving into making mode. So far I have bought fabric for Chexie’s quilt, toweling for bibs, and snaps for onesies/baby-grows. I’m hoping to crank the onesies, booties and bibs in a week or so. Just one long assembly line.

As for the quilt…I just can’t decide on what I’d like it to look like. It has to be easy and stress-free. Here are some of my inspirations.

Well that’s all for now. Looking forward to possible sharing some things I’ve made soon. Hope those fabrics get here soon.

Dressing the Bump

Dressing the Bump posts will center around trying to stay fashionable and comfortable while being a curvy/chubby/fat/whatever mama-to-be. Pretty maternity clothes are not easy to come by, especially if you are over a size US18/UK20. Affordable and trendy clothes seem to peak around a size US 14/UK 16. That would have been fine had I gotten pregnant right when I got married. But a baby, and staying a size 14, just wasn’t in the cards for me at that time.

Rather than gamble by buying plus-size wear online before trying it on, I’ve decided that it’s worth to continue my growth as a sewist and sew through my pregnancy. I am also keeping my eyes open for low-costing clothes that can easily be refashioned later. Today for example, I wore a Gap skirt that I purchased for ¬£12. I figured once I grew out of it I could convert it into a maternity skirt, attaching a knit band to accommodate the bump.

Dressing the Bump

So that’s what I wore today. Today happened to be my midwife appointment. I have had two scans but have yet to hear the baby’s heartbeat so I was way excited for this appointment. But my chubby belly failed me. The midwife had a hard time finding the baby’s heartbeat with the fetal monitor. I didn’t panic. I had read that medical professionals can sometimes have a hard time finding a baby’s heartbeat when a women is over a certain BMI. *Sigh* But I have to admit, a little part of me died inside when she instructed me to pull my belly back as she continued to search for the heartbeat. But no luck. She instructed me to get dressed and asked if it would be okay if she referred me to the hospital. Of course I thought it was fine. I went straight there from her office. Still I didn’t panic.

I emailed my husband to keep him up to speed. He replied,”Oh no!¬† That’s worrying.¬† Keep me updated, please!” And that’s when I started to panic. If my “Cool as a Cumber” husband was worried that meant I should be worried too, right? And then began the longest bus ride to the hospital ever. Twelve minutes felt more like ages. Upon arriving to the hospital I went into the toilets and had myself a nice good cry. I’m not sure if I was giving into dark suspicions, or just letting the worry take over me. But I felt a bit better. Although, in the lift I started to look at a women’s big pregnant belly longingly, wondering if mine would get to grow that size.

Luckily, I didn’t have to wait long. I was seen soon after arriving at the Maternity Day Unit. They were going to use a fetal monitor but after hearing how it had failed this morning the technician went with a scan. And that’s when I saw it, Chexie’s heart beating. I’m not going to lie. I cried. I was too happy and relieved to see that moving little baby not to.

I left the hospital with a less heavy heart, wondering how long would it be before the fetal monitor could pick up the baby’s heartbeat? I don’t think I can go through another scare like that! My friend has offered to lend me her fetal monitor and I am taking her up on it. I think it’ll be exciting to finally hear it, whenever that may be.