Thursday, February 22, 2018

Real Reasons Women Choose to VBAC


             Hey folks! With my third baby's due date quickly approaching (and hopefully 2nd VBAC), I've been thinking a lot about my last birth. Will going into labor be similar? Will it go as fast? Will I be fortunate and not have any major complications?
             I enjoy reminiscing about my VBAC with my second baby because it was one of the best experiences of my life, as cliché and corny as that may sound. One thing that really bothered me, though, when I first told family and friends about how I wanted to have one was their lack of enthusiasm due to ignorance. This was a really big deal to me, after all! I suppose I'm getting a bit ahead of myself, though.
             So, what's a VBAC? VBAC stands for Vaginal Birth After Cesarean. Yes, this is actually a “thing” now. Gone are the days of “once a c-section, always a c-section”! Speaking of which, let's talk about some other myths and facts surrounding VBACs and c-sections.

*Most women with a prior c-section are great candidates for a VBAC. In fact, according to ACOG (American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists), women who have a trial of labor after c-section (TOLAC) have a 60-80% success rate for vaginal birth.

*Although far too common in our society nowadays, the fact remains that cesareans are major abdominal surgery. With VBAC, women can “avoid major abdominal surgery and lowers their risk of hemorrhage, blood clots and infection. It also shortens the recovery period and reduces women’s risk of experiencing maternal morbidity or mortality during delivery in a future pregnancy due to repeated C-sections.” (ACOG)

*Naturally, there are factors that could impede VBAC success. ”There are certain conditions that can make VBAC less likely if TOLAC is attempted, including advanced maternal age, a high body mass index, a high birth weight and a previous C-section that resulted because the cervix failed to dilate.” (ACOG)

*The most talked about risk with VBACs is uterine rupture. This is a very valid concern as it can cause both fetal and maternal death, but, it is very rare at less than 1% occurrence in those going through TOLAC.

             Clearly, there are advantages, disadvantages, and risks to consider whether you decide to try for a VBAC or opt for a repeat c-section. More and more women, though, are opting for VBAC, myself included. Now that you understand more about the medical aspect of choosing between the two ways to birth, I want to share some of my own personal reasons as well as some fellow mom bloggers who also chose to VBAC!

             As for me, I always wanted to experience vaginal birth. Don't ask me why, because I couldn't tell you, but it's just one of those things I always wanted to do. I also really wanted to have a drug-free birth, but that flew out the window once I hit about 7/8 cm dilated. Those Pitocin contractions (I opted to get induced) are no joke! (Seriously. So much different than going into labor on your own!) Still, I cried when I gave in to getting the epidural.
             Long story short, labor went pretty fast, but after 3 hours of pushing, we decided to do a c-section. I never got the official records, but from what I understood, my daughter hadn't really descended right and her head and shoulders got stuck funky, which is why I wasn't making any progress pushing. She actually had a red spot on her head at first from where she was hitting my pubic bone!
             Anyways, I was bound and determined to have a VBAC with my next baby. I didn't see any reason not to. It's not like I had to have an emergency c-section. I did lots of research. It just felt right. I felt like it was my second chance, literally and figuratively, to have the birth experience I was hoping for.
             We moved back to Indiana after our first daughter and I found a very VBAC-friendly doctors office. Despite my diet-controlled gestational diabetes, I was able and fortunate to have a perfectly smooth, drug-free VBAC at 40+3 weeks going into labor on my own! Again, it was one of the best experiences of my life. I am so glad I was able to experience it and am hoping for another smooth VBAC delivery again any day now!
              If interested, you can read both Myka's c-section birth story and Ripley's VBAC birth story.

Jessi from The Coffee Mom

My first baby was frank breech, and that resulted in a scheduled C-section at 39 weeks. It wasn't an awful experience, but not the best by any means. Recovery was harder and being a new mom I felt like there wasn't much after support for C-section moms as far as what I was and was not allowed to do.

A few years later, when I was pregnant with my son, I decided to have a VBAC. Since nowhere in my town would do them, I had to go to a larger city about 20 minutes away. The care was amazing and I was able to have my VBAC at 41 weeks. I was told if I didn't go into labor on my own by 42 weeks, I would have another C-section since they can not induce. The whole experience was wonderful and recovery was much easier.

You can read her VBAC story in full on her blog.


Melinda from Unfrazzled Mama

For my first baby I had hoped to go for the natural/no pain meds birth and, unfortunately, had to have a C-section at the last minute. My water broke on it's own and I was all set in my hospital room to deliver vaginally, but the doctor decided to check to make double sure the baby was head down. He felt something off, and decided to do an ultrasound right there and it turned out that she was breech. All the other doctors had missed it. So then I had to go for an "emergency" C-section that night. I never had any contractions even though my water broke. So with my second, I definitely wanted to try to successfully experience a natural birth, not to mention avoid all the risks that come along with multiple C-sections.


Abigail

When I was pregnant with my first son, at my 38 week visit, the midwife had a hard time finding the heart beat of the baby...there was nothing. I was sent for an ultrasound and from then on everything was fine. They monitored me for a whole day and nothing seemed wrong.

The next day they came to my room and said they would send me home but another doctor came in and said I was having a c-section that day. I freaked out. The more I said no the more they bullied me and told me I was putting my son's life in danger. So we did it.

The spinal shot was the scariest thing I've ever done. It took long to heal and I felt like I wasn't what a real mom should be. I spoke to other moms and they discussed things like contractions...I didn't know what that was. The moment they give you the baby after birth...mine was taken away....so yeah.

With my second I was in another country, and I pushed hard for a VBAC, I wanted to know what it felt like to give birth the way God intended. Thankfully, the doctors there were more open to this option. I had a completely natural birth with no painkillers, no bullying...My labour was 4 hours long and went very smoothly. Now I'm pregnant with my third and unfortunately I'm in my country of origin, Malta, where I had my first...and I am very concerned. There are no birthing clinics, no doulas for a homebirth....


Marcie from Marcie in Mommyland

With my oldest, I had placenta previa and was on hospital bed rest for the last 2 months of my pregnancy. Because of the previa, we knew I'd need a c-section. We ended up having an emergency c-section at 35 weeks. After being on bed rest, recovering from the c-section was so difficult and I dreaded just thinking about how to recover from surgery while tending to a toddler if we had another baby.

I always thought I'd need to have another c-section for my 2nd baby. So, when my doctor told me I'd be a great candidate for a VBAC, I did a ton of Googling. Since my first pregnancy/delivery was so intense, I wanted a completely different experience with my second. I ended up hiring a doula, which was the smartest decision for our family! Since I'd never been in labor before, I relied on her a lot to help me with the last 5 weeks of pregnancy (which I hadn't experienced before), labor, and vaginal delivery. I love that my kids came into this world in very unique and distinct ways.


              As you can see from just the few examples here, there are many different circumstances that lead up to each of these c-sections. But, for the most part, the reasons for wanting a VBAC are similar. A lot of women simply want to experience vaginal birth and I, and more and more mothers, doctors, doulas, etc., feel we shouldn't be denied that experience unless truly, medically necessary.
             With that being said, I would like to close with this: This post is not intended to offend anyone. I am not trying to put down anyone who elects to have a repeat c-section. I do not know your situation. It may be what's right for your body and your family. I'm simply hoping to 1) Enlighten more mothers of their options who may not have even known VBAC was a possibility and 2) Answer those questions that people had who didn't understand why a woman wouldn't just opt for another c-section. (Which, by the way, is NOT the “easy way out”, like some like to ignorantly say! Cesareans are abdominal surgery and as such require several weeks to months of healing time!)
This Is How We Roll Thursday Party

Tuesday, February 20, 2018

Disney's "Lady and the Tramp" Giveaway

Lady and the Tramp Signature Collection Giveaway

Welcome to the Disney's Lady and the Tramp Signature Collection DVD Giveaway!

1 winner

This giveaway is part of our Spring and Easter Gift Guide – Stop by to see all the giveaways and great products.
This contest is hosted by the Social Media Gurus Network!
Host that put together this giveaway is Michigan Saving and More
Below is a list of all the bloggers involved in the gift guide giveaways.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Now let’s get to the sponsor!

DISNEY

Disney's Lady and the Tramp Wags Its Way into the Walt Disney Signature Collection

Disney's Lady and the Tramp Signature Collection

More information HERE.

~~~~~~

THE GIVEAWAY

This giveaway is in no way endorsed, affiliated, or associated with Facebook, Twitter or any other Social Media Networking Site.You are not eligible if you have won a prize from the sponsor in the last 12 month. This Giveaway is valid in the United States Only and Entrants must be 18+ years of age to enter. This giveaway event will end at 11:59 PM (EST) 3/12/18. The winners will have 48 hours to email their information back to las93063 at gmail dot com or a new winner will be drawn, you may want to put this email address as safe as it could go to spam. The sponsors are each responsible for shipping of the above prizes. No blog associated with this contests are responsible for prize fulfillment. If you would like to be a sponsor in a giveaway like this please email Laura Smith at las930 (at)gmail (dot) com. If you take an entry you must stay following for the entire contest or you will be disqualified.

Also we all “love it if you like us” on Facebook! If you like our blogs on social media it helps us bring you only the best giveaways and more of them!

Enter below and Good Luck!

Teach My Preschooler Giveaway

Teach My Preschooler Giveaway

Welcome to the Teach My Preschooler Giveaway!

1 winner

This giveaway is part of our Spring and Easter Gift Guide – Stop by to see all the giveaways and great products.
This contest is hosted by the Social Media Gurus Network!
Host that put together this giveaway is Michigan Saving and More
Below is a list of all the bloggers involved in the gift guide giveaways.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Now let’s get to the sponsor!

TEACH ME

Teach My Preschooler Giveaway  

Teach My Preschooler

$29.99 RV each
See reviews HERE.

~~~~~~

THE GIVEAWAY

This giveaway is in no way endorsed, affiliated, or associated with Facebook, Twitter or any other Social Media Networking Site.You are not eligible if you have won a prize from the sponsor in the last 12 month. This Giveaway is valid in the United States Only and Entrants must be 18+ years of age to enter. This giveaway event will end at 11:59 PM (EST) 3/26/18. The winners will have 48 hours to email their information back to las93063 at gmail dot com or a new winner will be drawn, you may want to put this email address as safe as it could go to spam. The sponsors are each responsible for shipping of the above prizes. No blog associated with this contests are responsible for prize fulfillment. If you would like to be a sponsor in a giveaway like this please email Laura Smith at las930 (at)gmail (dot) com. If you take an entry you must stay following for the entire contest or you will be disqualified.

Also we all “love it if you like us” on Facebook! If you like our blogs on social media it helps us bring you only the best giveaways and more of them!

Enter below and Good Luck!

Monday, February 19, 2018

Pregnancy Journal #12: Stick a Fork in Me


             Hey folks! So...37 weeks. I think the title of this post says it all. I know a lot of women get to the “I'm done with this nonsense” stage sooner than this point, but 37 weeks always seems to be my personal point in my pregnancies where I'm just over it. I'm sure it has everything to do with the fact that I realize at this point that baby would, in all likelihood, be perfectly healthy and not need any special care or extended hospital stay. The realization flips my antsy switch every time.
             I'm trying really hard not to get too antsy yet since I feel like that will just jinx things and cause me to stress unnecessarily. Considering this is my third, I know baby will get here when it is darn well ready, not me. And, to be honest, I'm not really feeling that terrible overall yet. Most days I feel surprisingly good, actually. I haven't slept well this whole pregnancy, so the sleep deprivation isn't really an issue yet. I will admit that I am starting to fluctuate more and more between feeling great one day and being sore and tired the next, though. It comes with the territory, right?
              My doctor's appointment went surprisingly well this week. The ultrasound showed that baby is officially head down! Yay! Took long enough. ;) I'm completely convinced it was the impromptu two mile hike we went on one Sunday that did it! I can't remember if I mentioned it in my last update, but I was pretty sure he/she had turned head down finally about a week before we confirmed it because I felt its hiccups in a much different spot. Funny, huh?
             Although I hadn't intended on getting “checked”, the doctor was already down there to do the group B strep test, so yah. I wasn't all that surprised to learn that I am already 2-3 cm dilated! Ever since baby got in the right position, I have had more and more pressure down there, especially when I stand up. I even had what felt like some real contractions for about an hour one night before bed! Although it's exciting to know that I'm already making progress, I kind of wish I hadn't known if I were dilated at all or not. Like I told my husband before I even had my appointment, women can walk around at 3cm dilated for weeks before anything exciting happens!
             I've probably mentioned this before too, but my mom, husband, and I all think this baby will be a little early. I have absolutely no reason to think this because neither of my other kids were early, but who knows. Since we all have the feeling, maybe it will actually happen and it's not just wishful thinking?
             I actually got to thinking more about that this morning. In all likelihood, baby could be “early” because I kind of forgot about the fact that I slightly fudged the date of my last period when they asked at the beginning of my pregnancy. I'm sure that probably sounds really messed up, but I have good reasons. I have long cycles AND I could tell you the exact date that * ahem * things happened. I didn't think the doctors would believe me if I told them I knew the exact date I got knocked up plus it probably wouldn't matter anyways since they calculate it by the first day of your last period.
             So, yah. I lied a little. Baby has been measuring around the date that I “made up”, though, so it's all good. Even though I had a successful VBAC last time, I'm still considered a VBAC patient, so I didn't want the doctors finding a reason to speed things up. That was my main reason for changing the date. So it was more accurate to how big the baby was and not some arbitrary date that I just happened to have my last period on. Anyways, I'm rambling. Moral of my story: I wouldn't be upset if I happened to have baby closer to February 18th instead of February 28th! (Plus the 18th is my step-dad's birthday!)
             I am too scatter-brained for my own good today, so I'll leave it here. Until next time...(This is where you think happy thoughts that I go into labor soon! ;) )
This Is How We Roll Thursday Party

Thursday, February 15, 2018

What I'm Missing Out On In 2018


             Hey folks! Sometimes we have an incredible knack for getting pregnant and expecting babies at not-such-great times, don't we? As I've mentioned before, with baby #3, we were kind of taking the “let's see what happens” approach...And lo and behold, we got pregnant a lot sooner than we expected! As my due date approaches, though, it's been sinking in more and more what a terrible time of year for us this baby is coming at. Lol So today I am sharing a few things that we'll be missing out on completely or will be much more difficult due to baby's timing.

            Brown County State Park

*Much less camping trips

I know, I know. Camping with a baby is totally doable, but a newborn? AND two other young kids? No thanks! Baby will only be 3 or 4 months around the time we would normally go camping. I'm pretty sure I'm nowhere near capable of or willing to deal with that many diapers and feedings while in the great outdoors. (Especially if Ripley is still not potty trained by then. Oy!) So it's kind of a bummer that we won't be able to do much camping this year...Not that we did much last year, but I was hoping to change that this year. Oh well.

I am still keeping my fingers crossed we can swing a longer trip to at least one place at the end of summer/early fall. After all, we have another state park pass to use this year that came with a campground gift card! And I fully intend to use it, gosh darn it!

                Aboard the Southern Belle in Chattanooga, TN
*No Tennessee Trip

Are you seeing a theme here yet? I enjoyed utilizing our state park pass so much last year and the few camping trips we did take, I was really hoping to do some more traveling this year.

Aside from local trips, I got the idea in my head that we needed to visit Chattanooga, Tennessee. John and I used to take trips to Tennessee all the time before we had kids and we keep talking about how it would be nice to go. We have only been to Chattanooga once together, but we only spent an afternoon there, so didn't really get to see or do much. Other than that, I haven't been there since I was in middle or high school!

Anyways, why Chattanooga? There are SO many things to do both in and around the city, especially kid-friendly things! With camping, waterfalls, caves, and other nature attractions nearby AND such places as the Tennessee Aquarium, Tennessee Valley Railroad Museum, and Southern Belle riverboat rides, it seems like the perfect family-friendly vacation for us...Without anyone getting bored! Again, oh well. One day. Until then, I can wistfully daydream... :)

*Spring Project and Garden Planning

This year should be very interesting. Pretty much as soon as it starts getting warmer out and there are less and less days below freezing, we get the itch to start working on things outside, add more animals, start seeds indoors, etc. We tend to get too ambitious with this year as no exception, what with wanting to start a Christmas tree farm area, build several chicken tractors, etc. I have a feeling we'll be lucky to get the normal stuff done, but one can dream, right?!

             With all that being said, I wouldn't change it for the world, of course! I am happy we will be completing our family and can't wait to find out if we're having a boy or girl! But, it's fun to reflect plus, I'm hoping by confessing all of my “would have beens”, it makes some of you moms out there not feel so bad if the same thing has happened to you and you felt guilty about it!
This Is How We Roll Thursday Party
ethannevelyn.com

Monday, February 12, 2018

Why Off Brand Formula is Just as Good as Name Brand


            Hey folks! It can be very overwhelming as a new parent, especially a first time mom. Everyone has their own opinions on things and are NOT afraid to give them! Whether you gave birth, adopted, or are still expecting your little one, I'm sure we all have our fair share of stories where someone (even strangers!) have given us unsolicited advice on parenting.
             With that being said, and in spite of potentially sounding like a hypocrite, I have my own piece of advice I'd like to share with you new moms out there today. (It's not unsolicited if you're here reading it on your own volition, right? ;) )
             Let's talk about formula. The whole breastfeeding vs. bottle feeding debate can be touchy for some people, to say the least. Do I think “breast is best”? Yes, I do. Even formula companies now say so. Do I think you're a terrible person if you won't, don't, or can't breastfeed? Absolutely not. Admittedly, I don't understand the people who won't at least give it a try, but that is not my decision and not my baby. It's as simple as that. I've had my fair share of issues with nursing, so formula feeding “is what it is” for us. That's my two cents on the issue. Moving on...
             One of my biggest beefs with formula is how insanely expensive it is! We quickly learned with our first daughter, however, that “name brand” didn't necessarily mean “better”.
You may (or may not) know how it is with your first child: You want the best of everything, right? Naturally, we started out buying the name brand formula. Well, it turned out Myka had some minor reflux issues, so we tried several different formulas and different formulations within the same brand, such as one to help with gas and fussiness. Oddly enough, her reflux got even WORSE the time we used the gas and fussiness formula!
             Eventually, we ended up trying the off brand Sam's Club formula since that was where we bought our formula at the time anyway. (I thought they used to have their own brand separate from the Walmart off brand, Paren'ts Choice, but I might be crazy because I can't find it now.) As I'm sure you can guess, this one ended up working the best for us. Between this formula and having her bed propped up slightly, her reflux issues went way down. We even took her off the medicine she was taking for it. Hooray for a child with cheap taste! Ha ha
             Moral of the story: Name brand does not always mean better and off brand does not always mean cheaper quality. Given, this is just our story and what worked for us and some babies may very well be different. (Otherwise there wouldn't be different types of formula, right?) There are some things in life that “you get what you pay for”. I don't think that is true in the case of formula, though.
Not much for anecdotes and want some numbers/actual proof? Check this out!


             First of all, you'll notice that they contain the exact same ingredients/vitamins, minerals, etc. Second, there are only two items that have different quantities listed from each other: water and linoleic acid. Admittedly, the linoleic acid content is somewhat significantly different, but I don't consider the water content to be. If anything, I'd say that the slightly lesser water content in the Parent's Choice formula means it doesn't have as much “filler”. Now, let's look at some more numbers!

(Per Walmart.com):

Similac for Supplementation-23.2 oz container-$27.97

             Yes, the name brand formula quite literally costs twice as much as the off brand for THE SAME THING. So, save yourself some money AND sanity and try out the off brands. It won't make you a bad mom to “buy the cheap stuff”. ;)
This Is How We Roll Thursday Party
ethannevelyn.com

Thursday, February 8, 2018

Wolf Cave Trail at McCormick's Creek State Park


             Hey folks! I feel like baby could come at any time now, so this may have very well been one of our last “hurrahs”. While not that big of a deal since it's not like we went camping or anything quite that exciting, I'm still glad we were able to go somewhere, however close, and spend some extended time outdoors as a family. If you're local-ish, I hope you enjoy learning about this trail from a very pregnant woman's point of view. If you're not local, I hope you enjoy our pictures and shenanigans anyways!


             So, I have been wanting to do the Wolf Cave trail at McCormick's Creek State Park for awhile. I had actually planned on doing it some time last year when the weather was still nice, but we just never got around to it for one reason or another. I blame all the early pregnancy nausea and wanting to do it when John was with us. I had read from others that the trail could be a bit rugged in parts, so it did not sound like something I would want to do alone with two kids and being pregnant.
             Fast forward to January 28th and hubby suggested we take advantage of the relatively nice weather and get out of the house and do something. For us, that almost always means going to some kind of nature-y area. So we decided to stick close to home and go to McCormick's Creek...But I told him I didn't feel like doing the paved trail, if he was feeling adventurous enough to take both the kids on a “real one”.
             First things first: We let the kids play at the playground for a bit and have a picnic lunch to appease them. My in-laws showed up around the time we sat down to eat and kept the kids entertained while we finished. I wasn't all that hungry, but I'm glad we ate when we did now. But I'll get to that later...
             We took part of the paved trail (8) and they decided to go down 5 (which connects to 8), which does a loop and leads to Wolf Cave. “Ok,” I thought. “It's something different and at least I can see how rugged this trail supposedly is.” I know I've told John it's a longer trail, not terrible, but longer for having two little kids with us. With that being said, I just followed along, expecting them to turn around any time. Silly me. Always assuming things, and you know where that gets ya!
             We ended up doing the WHOLE FREAKING THING, which is about 2 miles long altogether from where we started and ended! That's a lot of walking for someone who's 8 months pregnant and not getting out much lately! With the two kids with us and having plenty of nature to explore, we took frequent breaks, so honestly, it wasn't too bad. Don't get me wrong: I'm writing this just two days after the fact and there are muscles in the backs of my knees that I didn't even know existed that are still sore, but I didn't feel like I was going to die at the end and it wasn't as rugged as I expected. Now, if I had had to carry Ripley some if the grandparents weren't there...That would probably be a different story!
             The worst part was the walk back up, but that's to be expected and it wasn't too bad. It's not like it's a race. The trail itself is nice and wide since so many people frequent it. Most of it was gravel covered. My only word of warning is that you have to cross the creek several times. So, if it has rained recently or, in our case, a lot of ice or snow has melted recently, be sure to bring proper boots!


             I would definitely like to do this trail again. The kids had a lot of fun exploring the cave and creek. Myka, naturally, wants to go back with a flashlight so she can actually crawl through the cave to the other side. I'll let her and daddy have fun with that. ;)
This Is How We Roll Thursday Party
ethannevelyn.com

Monday, February 5, 2018

Stay Healthy & Fight Morning Sickness with Morning Pep Prenatal! (Review)

*Mixed Bag Mama was compensated for this post. Regardless, all opinions are my own.


             Hey, mamas-to-be, nursing moms, and TTC ladies! I think it's pretty awesome that there are so many options for prenatal vitamins nowadays, don't you? Today I want to share with you about a prenatal vitamin I just learned about from Morning Pep. Wondering why it's so special or what makes it different than other prenatals? Read on!

About Morning Pep Prenatal:

*Morning Pep Prenatal Has Been Carefully Crafted With All Essential Nutrients Necessary For Expecting And Nursing Mothers At This Special Stage In Life.

*Our Prenatal Is Food Based And Rich With Nutrients. A Superior Blend To Aid With Morning Sickness And Nausea All In A One Easy To Swallow Tablet.

*Morning Pep Prenatal Blend Is Formulated In A Way Where It Is Will Be Maximally Effective To Support Brain, Eye, And Nervous System Function.

*Morning Pep Prenatal Folic Acid Comes In The Form of L-Methyl Folate, The Most Bioavailable And Easily Absorbed Form of Folic Acid Or Folate.

*Morning Pep Prenatal Vitamin Tablets Are Odorless And Tasteless So You Do Not Experience Any Side Effects Like Nausea Etc.

*Morning Pep Prenatal Includes 25 MG of A Superior Blend of PROBIOTICS & ENZYMES And 800 MCG of Folic Acid (Folate).

*Morning Pep Prenatal Supports A Healthy Pregnancy, Breast Health, Healthy Estrogen Levels And The Immune System.

*Morning Pep Prenatal Eases Nausea And May Helps Support Hormone Related Mood Swings.

*Morning Pep Prenatal Is Manufactured And Packaged In The USA 



             I am well past my morning sickness days (thank God!), but boy do I wish I had known about these then! I mean, you're likely already taking a prenatal vitamin of some sort when you're pregnant. It's about time someone formulated them to help with morning sickness!
             I also found it interesting that Morning Pep Prenatal includes probiotics as well. I've not gotten into probiotics much, to be honest, but they have become more and more popular over the past several years and I hear plenty of people who swear by their benefits! I even read something recently that claims that taking a probiotic during pregnancy * may * help with preventing the group B strep that can pop up during pregnancy (or any time of life) and is tested for your doctor around 36 weeks.
             Other than what I mentioned above, here is my experience/opinions on Morning Pep so far:

-I would not call these “easy to swallow”. They are your typical horse pill-sized prenatal. That is probably my biggest complaint about these. I am not great at swallowing pills to begin with. These are impossible unless I chop them up.

-I wouldn't say these are odorless either. They smell like, well, vitamins. Or, as my husband described them, “Like a Flintstones vitamin without the flavoring.” ha ha! Tasteless? If you're swallowing them like a normal person, yes, I would say they're tasteless.

-Comparing the amount and type of iron and vitamin D I was previously taking to that which is included in the Morning Pep Prenatal, we decided it should be ok to stop taking those as I don't want to have too much of a good thing! So far the results have been surprising. The iron supplement I was taking was really messing my, well, #2's up. I'll spare you the details. I thought I would go back to being more regular since there isn't as much iron in the prenatal, but so far it seems to have the opposite effect. Who knows. It's not been quite a week yet. My body still might be getting used to them.

             That being said, I would still definitely recommend these to other pregnant friends! I realize most people are a lot better at taking pills than I am. (Though I would love to see a smaller size or chewable version in the future?) Plus, if it has any chance with helping morning sickness at all, I'm sure most pregnant people will be lined up to try these!
             Oh! And they are made for nursing mothers as well, which is great because nursing can really deplete you of vital nutrients for yourself AND baby! Even if you don't/can't nurse, these would come in handy for after you give birth regardless to start down a healthy road of recovery.
             Learn more about Morning Pep and their other products on their website. You can order your own bottle of Morning Pep Prenatal vitamins by following this link. (Currently on sale for $20 for a four month supply!)
This Is How We Roll Thursday Party
ethannevelyn.com

Friday, February 2, 2018

Minnie "Helping Hearts" DVD Giveaway

Welcome to the Minnie Helping Hearts DVD Giveaway!

1 winner

This giveaway is part of our Valentine's Day Gift Guide – Stop by to see all the giveaways and great products.
This contest is hosted by the Social Media Gurus Network!
Host that put together this giveaway is Michigan Saving and More
Below is a list of all the bloggers involved in the gift guide giveaways.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
This giveaway's Sponsor is:

Disney

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Minnie Helping Hearts DVD Giveaway

Minnie Helping Hearts DVD

$10 RV
See the review HERE.

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THE GIVEAWAY

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Thursday, February 1, 2018

Pregnancy Journal #11: 35 Weeks Update!


            Hey folks! I can't believe I only have (roughly) 5 weeks left. Eek! I'm sure I've already said it several times, but this pregnancy went by insanely fast. I'm sure it has a lot to do with having two other kids to keep me occupied constantly. ;)
             Last week, I had another “growth scan” before my regular appointment. (I went through this with Ripley too because of the gestational diabetes, I guess. After 30 weeks or so, I get an ultrasound every 4 weeks.) As far as cute face pictures go, baby was less than cooperative and the one in the post image above is literally the best one we got. But, it's all good because baby was facing towards my back, which made me happy since that's good when it comes to labor. (I know, I know. Babies move all the time. Just...hush! ;) )
             If you've been keeping up with my pregnancy updates at all, you'll know that my biggest concern with this baby has been his/her position. Baby was transverse (sideways) for the longest time. Then we discovered he/she was sitting full on breech at my 30 week ultrasound. Ugh! Now, thankfully Baby Contortionist, or BC for short, as I will refer to baby as from now on, is at least transverse again. While head down would have been great so I can stop stressing, it was better news than I was expecting. I have my fingers crossed that this means BC is just slowly making its way to where it needs to go!
             Kind of late for a new nickname for baby, but Baby Contortionist seems very fitting after this last ultrasound. All except for the first US that was done early on, BC has had their feet up by their head or in their face EVERY TIME. This was part of the reason we couldn't get any good pictures of BC's face this time. Baby literally had a foot across his eyes at one point! Kid has a weird foot obsession already...
             According to ultrasound measurements, which I do not believe in at all because there is such a margin of error with them, especially the closer you get to the end of your pregnancy, baby weighs 6lbs 4oz and is in the 80th percentile...Even if it's true, I don't think that is all that bad. I gave birth to an 8lb 15oz baby just fine, so I'm not too concerned about having a bigger baby, unlike all the medical staff seems to be. The US tech and doctor both made comments about how “hopefully this baby won't be as big as your last”. It's getting to the point of awkwardness whenever they bring baby weight up because I don't react like most women and instead just kind of force a smile that says “Whatever you say, doc.”
             So...Back to the breech/transverse thing. I am not NEARLY as worried about it now that I know BC is sideways again. But, I'm still kind of torn on some decision making I'm going to have to do sooner or later. Namely, the more I researched the ECV's (version, for short) the doctor can perform to try to get baby to flip head down, the less crazy I am about the whole thing. For starters, the success rate sucks, which I think I mentioned in my last post. Even the doctor admitted they only work about half of the time! On top of that, while the percentage of risks are about the same as the ones for a VBAC (which I had no qualms about), I feel like there are a lot more risks involved with this version process. I'm talking emergency situation, scary shit, like placental abruption, cord getting twisted or squeezed, preterm labor, etc. Personally, I feel like that is a lot of risks for such a crappy success rate. Oh. And they evidently give you some kind of drug to make your uterine muscles relax on top of all that?! Again, the whole thing is just sending me red and yellow flags, so I figure I should probably listen to that little voice in the back of my head. I don't do it nearly enough and always curse at myself when I don't!
             I'm totally into alternative methods to try to flip baby, though! At first, I didn't give much thought to going to the chiropractor when people were suggesting the Webster technique that some do. I've never been to the chiropractor in my life! Plus, you know, more money to dole out. :/ But, I've heard so many good things and was/am starting to get desperate enough to actually convince me to give it a go. Plus, it has a helluva lot better success rate than ECVs at 82%!
            Now that I'm at the end, I get to start going to the doctor every week. Yippee Skippy. (Seriously. One of my least favorite parts of being pregnant!) In hindsight, I'm wishing I would have declined the “quick ultrasound” they want to do beforehand to check baby's position. I already mentioned to Dr.Wetsponge (yes, I totally made that up because his personality, or lack thereof, is terrible!) that I was leaning against having the version done...But I don't think he listens very well. I still try to joke around at appointments with him and he usually completely ignores me. -_- He also said they would check my cervix since they are doing the GBS swab next time, then quickly added, “If you want.” I promptly answered, “No, not really.” I didn't get any checks done at the end with my last pregnancy and it served me well. If it ain't broke, don't fix it, right?
             Thanks for reading! If you're pregnant too, let me know how your pregnancy is going in the comments below! Until next time...(Heck! There might be a baby here by next time!)
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