Sunday, April 26, 2009

29 Weeks & oops...I Somehow Skipped 28 Weeks

That's what happens when you are having too much fun running around all day with your toddler chasing leaves and catching the wind. Nothing monumental happened my last week worth writing about anyway. My symptoms never changed and transitioning to trimester three proved to be quite anti-climatic. Yay!! This week I am even sleeping better than normal, which means falling asleep easily and sleeping soundly until 6:30 AM. Something new that has happened this week is that I am anxious to find out more about this person moving inside of me. This is the biggest downside to not finding out the sex with your second child. You are much more in tune to what is happening inside of you and it feels weird now that he/she's movements are so....human-like....that I yearn to know more about them. Not sure if that made ANY sense, whatsoever. I also feel a bit unprepared and anxious when I think about the sex of my child. If she is a she than there are a few "feminine" baby items I need would like to have ahead of time. If he is a he, then he needs a name. This is just ridiculous and I blame it on nesting.

Since we've only had 2 days of insanely good weather here (have I mentioned that I run cold-er during pregnancy than even normal which is insane) I still cannot bare my stomach to even my most loved and cherished friends and family. I give you a 'covered' 29 week belly shot:

Saturday, April 25, 2009

A Finn-tastic Week

I dedicated this entire week to having fun adventures with Finn. Just the two of us doing whatever he loves best which more often than not will involve sticks or running or a combo of the two which for me spells D-A-N-G-E-R. The closer I get to becoming a mother of two (the floating baby tells me I have 71 days left), the more anxious I feel about spending as much quality time as possible with my beloved firstborn baby. Finn is living out his final days of only-childom and even though he doesn't realize it quite yet, I do and I feel the need to make this time as special as possible for him. John and I also planned a mini river vacation in June, not only to celebrate John turning 31 (a little late), but to take our last trip as a family of three.

I really wanted to try and take him to new/exciting locations that we have never visited before or change it up appropriately by adding new activities. I give you a week in review via photos:

Tuesday afternoon spent gazing at eye level airplanes at the Science Center

Wednesday morning spent at Mary's house with the playgroup, playing with all of AJ's toys

An amazing Thursday afternoon feeding the ducks (and swan) at Lafayette Square Park

Friday morning running through the hosta plants after feeding the fish at the Botanical Gardens

And finally the topper on the cake, the grand finale to end all of fabulous weeks...a sunny Saturday afternoon spent with Dee-da (Finn's new name for John):

In Tower Grove Park where Dee-da scored Finn some balll-ooons...

Friday, April 24, 2009

Fashion Friday: Fun with Finn!

Location: The Botanical Gardens Childrens Park
Striped Tee: Splendid Littles,
Cargo Pants: Old Navy
Shoes: Puma 'Drift Cat II' Sneaker, Nordstrom

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Old Friends and New Friends

The weekend was fantastic. First, there was really nothing better than getting to see and catch up with some of my oldest and dearest friends. Second, my Dinner party went off without a hitch and the happy couple got hitched and all around the birds sang a sweet song. This was only my second official planned party to date with the first being Finn's birthday (I consider it to be a party when there is 10 or more in attendance. This particular party included 12 people). A couple benefits to being pregnant is that one, if you look remotely decent you're going to get complimented. People, in general, have really low expectations of how one should look when pregnant like fat and bloated, for example. I am luckily still in a stage where my huge boobs overshadow much of the bloating and the huge beach ball attached to my waist. And two, people are gonna go out of their way to help clean up because God forbid you should have to be up on your feet working at 7 months pregnant. Anyway, the food and drinks were consumed by all (except yours truly) and I wouldn't have changed a thing. Finally, you know you hosted a good party when the last of your guests walk home strumming a guitar and your toddler's potty doubles as a puke bowl. Good times.

The last of our weekend guests left yesterday and today it was back to our old routine. I felt like I had jipped Finn out of an entire week of fun activities in lieu of preparing for our big weekend so I am making it a goal to take him somewhere new and exciting everyday this week. Not to mention the fact that I just missed him. That one on one best friend stuff that we normally do together. Which is crazy if you think about it....I mean I am with him everyday yet if I am not mentally involved in our daily activities I feel like I am missing out somehow. He is sooo my BFF. So, today we went to the Science Museum and ran around all the exhibits like a couple of crazy weirdos. Tomorrow we have a play date with a new mom's group. Later this week I hope to go to The Loop and listen to records and chill on the playground and eat ice cream since the weather is (finally) going to be IN THE 80's. YES!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

In completely unrelated news I decided to go BACK to the bangs. You know how 'they' tell you never to make drastic changes to your looks when you are pregnant? Well, I am SO glad I did. The bangs cover my ever expanding fat face. They were soooo necessary. So screw you, THEY, and your stupid rules.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Meet Me (and Finn) in St.Louis....

A huge advantage to staying at home and raising children is being able to familiarize oneself with the city they live in. For me that city is none other than the great St.Louis, Missouri. After being home with Finn for the past year, I feel pretty well versed in kid-approved day trips in/around St.Louis. In my personal experience the following destinations are not only fun for the young ones but also for 'kids' of all ages. I now present you with The Ducks' Top Destinations for fun in St.Louis (in no particular order):

The St.Louis Zoo, Forest Park:

This is probably one of my favorite spots to go in St.Louis and I have sung its praises here and there and pretty much to anyone who will listen. This is my favorite zoo in the whole wide world and delicious icing on the zoo cake is that it is FREE. The St.Louis Zoo is the third largest in the country and is home to 22, 805 exotic animals many of them rare or endangered. Some of our favorite exhibits include the sea lion show, The river's edge (an elephant exhibit), and the big cat country. There is also a great children's zoo where kids can pet the animals and carousel, both of which are free the first hour of the day that they are open.

The Missouri Botanical Garden, Tower Grove:

The Missouri Botanical Garden is a National Historic Landmark with 79 acres of beautiful scenic landscaping and structures. The entrance fee is $8 for adults and free to children 12 and under. On Wednesday and Saturday mornings it is free to everyone. Some of Finn's favorite activities include feeding the giant Koi fish in the Japanese Gardens and running through the maze gardens. The Botanical Gardens can even be a great winter destination with a visit through the Climatron, a glass geodesic dome through which you can stroll through even when there is snow on the ground.

Grant's Farm South Saint Louis:

Animal shows, a tram ride through the wildlife preserve and a petting area...what more could a kid want? It is home to more than 100 different species from 6 different continents. The farm is owned and operated by the Anheuser-Busch family estate and was once owned by former president, Ulysses S. Grant of whom the Farm is named after . It is free to all ages and there is no reservation required.

The Delmar Loop (named after the old streetcar turnaround), University City:

The street known as Delmar Blvd (Soon to be Barack Obama Blvd.) is a destination in itself. Founder Joe Edwards, music promoter and one of Johns hero's, single-handedly turned one of St.Louis sagging neighbors around 30 years ago turning it into a cultural attraction today. The Loop has something for everyone: great little one-of-a-kind inexpensive restaurants, playgrounds, unique stores, and theatres. One of our family's favorite jaunts in the loop is a record store called Vintage Vinyl. It has music stations set up with headphones and new music available to listen to on the spot. Anyone can download music clips from youtube or itunes but in my opinion nothing beats a good old fashioned headphone in the record store experience.

The Gateway Arch, Downtown St.Louis:

Although Finn has yet to visit The Arch in downtown St.Louis, this is an attraction for older kiddos and is not be missed. Standing 630 ft. tall, The Arch is our nations tallest man-made monument and has plenty of exciting activities. You can take a tram ride to the top, see a documentary film about the history of the Arch, or explore the Lewis and Clark exhibit. The Arch has been one of St. Louis most popular tourist attraction since it was built in October 1965.

Monday, April 13, 2009

27 Weeks, Maybe 28

Every OB visit my doc goes back and forth with my due date, sometimes it's the 4th of July and sometimes it's the 11th. At my 8 week ultrasound I measured on the 11th and then my 13th and 16th week ultrasounds I measured on the 4th. The actual "due date" doesn't really matter to me because really, only 5 % of babies are actually born on their due dates. Not to mention that I don't see myself actually ever going into labor. Water breaking, contractions, mucus plug. Doubt it all to the third. This baby will probably be forced out a little early just like Finn. The bottom line is I just started my 3rd trimester. Yay!!

So, my little Chinese cabbage is growing nicely....just a tad over 2 pounds now and about 15 inches long. Some new symptoms have presented themselves, some continue, and some are now long gone. I am starting to get ligament pain, which is not really pain so much as an odd stretching/pulling feeling in my hip/lower abdominal area. I remember this very clearly from last time and it's not that bothersome. Also, DREADED heartburn has set in. So far it's not as bad as last time (probably b/c I am remembering 9 mo heartburn vs. 6 mo heartburn). I am waking up everyday at 5:45 now vs. 6:20. Damn. It's just going to get earlier and earlier from here, I suppose.

My nesting habit has gone into O-V-E-R-drive. Let me tell ya, today I made no less than 7 lists. I even made a list of lists. And I can't even be IN the house if the house is not top to bottom clean. Laundry rarely sits and waits for a full load before it is in the wash to be cleaned. I have a date set for the First Annual Duckworth Spring Cleaning Event and I am literally counting down the days. If I could, I would replace creepy floaty baby ticker with a Spring Cleaning ticker. Maybe a little washing machine going round and a round with 19 days left counting down for me. Now ThAT is more my speed these days. I am so sure my little cabbage could care less about clean laundry and organized closets is what it is.

I am SERIOUSLY no longer underweight. NO longer is that an ISSUE anymore, Self. So get the memo, kay?? I had to hide the girl scout cookies from myself which is quite easy these days since I have pregnancy amnesia. I have NO idea where they are, so GOOD. So in light of that I give you a 27/28ish week pic:

(There will be NO MORE exposed belly shots while my HUGE stomach is pasty pale white)

**A side note about my firstborn...Finn does not have a hernia, which means no immediate surgical intervention is necessary. Yay! However, he does have a hydrocele. Boo. The surgeon says it could disappear by age 2, so we have a follow up visit in 6 months so he can decide if it needs to be removed or not.

Friday, April 10, 2009

Finn Fashion Friday: A Brisk April Morning

Location: Natural History Museum in Forest Park
Cable Knit Sweater:
Gap Kids
Plaid Flannel Shirt:
Denim Jeans:
Old Navy
Boots: Vintage

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Fashion Past and Present

In my pre-house wifey/mommy life I lived and breathed fashion. I would leaf through fashion magazines drooling over the glossy pages like a sex addict with a copy of penthouse. I saved stacks and stacks of mags and when it got ridiculous I would cut out my favorite articles or editorial pages and stash them in a binder for future reference (I still have these binders upstairs in my spare room) I planned my outfits out meticulously and sometimes I would write down my favorite 'looks' in my journal for future reference. It was my one true passion and it was what defined me most. In the fall of my Junior year at Purdue University I was leaving my fashion marketing class after recruiters from F.I.T came to speak with my class, that I wondered what the hell was I doing in West Lafayette anyway? If I was really serious about turning this into a career I needed to be in the fashion capitol of the U.S., plain and simple. The day that I decided to move to New York City will forever be burned into my brain, along with my wedding day and Finn's birth.

The 3 1/2 years that followed were filled with constant affirmations of my decision to move there. The classes were taught by professors who held real life fashion executives roles in their former lives and I received the best education of my life. Not only that but I spent my spare time shopping trendy, one of a kind stores and attending Museum Openings celebrating the careers of people like Bob Mackie and Cher. There job placement program landed me several interviews proceeded by several offers and I was left to decide which option I was best suited for. In the end I chose to stay in New York and took a job with Federated Merchandising Group working as a Product Assistant for INC. I learned a great deal about the business of fashion that first year and was quickly promoted. I was also lucky enough to attend a photo shoot in the Meatpacking District featuring Heather Mills as our celeb model. One day we were standing around the studio when lo and behold Sir Paul himself gets out the limo and kisses his misses goodbye (good times..... and poor unknowing bastard).

It was around that time that I decided enough is enough with New York. I'm broke, yo! And after a series of events including falling in love with the man that is now my husband, I moved to good ole St.Louis. So what's a Manolo-clad, Gucci-bag toting girl to do in the city best known for it's huge metal monument and Cardinal baseball?? Like kismet, the same month I started looking for a job, a Nordstrom was opening its doors nearby. I started in Sales in the Designer Department and in eight short months I became the manager of the department. In my role I was able to not only dress people in amazing fashion and build a kick-ass clientele, but I was also able to put my signature mark on the department through merchandising and business development. I became a mentor to some and I was known for my great style and eye for colors and putting looks together to suit peoples individual personality. Yay! My calling! Cue the singing angels!

Fashion was here and there and everywhere and I not only worked the business end but I also had a quick stint in modeling (kidding, I'm not). I made a friend at Nordstrom, a keen business woman who quit to open her own store. She asked me to model clothes for her store and several months later she would ask me to catwalk a runway (yikes). She would pay me in clothes from the store, which were worth there weight in gold.

(my past life colliding with my present as I prepare to walk the catwalk, 2 months pregnant)

The passion I felt for my work would only be out-numbered by the intense love I felt for my son when he was born and knowing that being without him for the majority of the day was no way an option for me. Every smile and coo from him was like a drug and I needed my fix like a typical junkie. It was a whole new and exciting world and I LOVED (love) every minute of it. Fashion continues to play a role in my life, albeit a much smaller role and it comes through in strange ways (Finn is by far the best dressed baby in his playgroup hands down, peeps). But day in and day out I am reminded by what I would miss the most....the fashion. The days new shipments would arrive in the department filled to the brim with brand new Missoni and Cavalli and all the girls nearby would flock like sheep to drool over it. The days my favorite clients would walk into the department looking to me to show them what's new, what's hot or dress them for local events. The days when I would spend way too much time standing in front of my closet wondering what to wear or what accessory goes best with what outfit. And then I look over at my son, with his thick and tosseled sandy colored hair rocking it out in cowboy boots and thin wale cords and think I am totally were I am supposed to be right now.

(So innocent and unknowing and has no idea what crazy ideas his momma has in store for him)

Monday, April 6, 2009

26 weeks & Closing in on 2nd

This weekend marks the beginning of the last week of my 2nd trimester. So long 2nd!! Thank you for the size D's, the healthy appetite and all the energy. Thanks for keeping me relatively sane, despite a few emotional breakdowns here and there. You were the best trimester and oh how I will miss you dearly! And now on to my last and final trimester. The evil 3rd. Please go easy on me, no heartburn, sleepless nights, and NO obese face-itis this time, please....pretty please?

I am kicking myself for adding the creepy floaty fetus ticker to the left of my blog. Every time I come here it sits there with its huge head floating around, numbers dwindling down before my eyes, reminding me that there are just days left of this pregnancy. You see, months seem so much longer. It's like you say....well I still have 3 months. 14 weeks. Okay, that's a lot of time to me, but 90 days...NINETY DAYS...wha...whah..what??? THAT'S IT?! See ya! I got to get to Target to get some more newborn swaddlers and nipple cream, STAT!!

(unfortunately, obese face-itis has already set in....)

So fetus 2.0 continues to be a super duper active baby and is really starting to enjoy or hate passionately the Baby Plus monitor because he/she kicks wildly every lesson. I am constantly being asked if this pregnancy has been different than the first. Pretty much it has been the same. I would definitely say this baby is more active on the whole. Not to mention that he/she kicked me for the first time at a mere 13 weeks! I am not sure how much of this/that has to do with my keen awareness this time around. Everything was so unknown and questionable last time.....was that a kick or the tuna melt I ate earlier digesting?

According to Babycenter at 26 weeks, the fetus' ears are now more sensitive and may be able to distinguish my voice to others. Cuteness!!! Time to start getting back into music/stop bitching at John all the time. Speaking of Babycenter, I could hardly wait to find out what food my babe was compared to this week after last weeks rutabaga debacle.....Ready for THIS???? Well ready or not here it is...........................................................................................

(an English hothouse cucumber)

I don't know about you, but for me there is nothing like a large phallic looking vegetable to get me in the mood for birthin' children.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Thought of the Day

When one can't wait for April showers to bring May flowers....

....One doesn't always have to. Oh, my sweet and thoughtful husband. I do loves him alot.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009


This week marked the ever magical age of 1 & 1/2 years of life for Finn. I think magic is definitely the appropriate word to define this age. He is learning and doing all of these new things daily that it makes my head spin in wonderment. New words blurt out of his mouth like magic....this week I can add bus, teddy, door, mole, and hand to the ever growing list of word and before long I will no longer be able to keep track. I find myself wondering "how did he learn that?" when he puts puzzles together and stacks blocks by color. Our new favorite activities include finding the "little mouse" in Goodnight Moon on each page and racing small cars to see "who" will win.

Every little thing he does is magic. Every little thing he do just makes me smile. Even though my life before was tragic. Now I know my love for him goes on.
I get chastised for not making a big to do about birthday's as an adult, but with children it's another story. A story where this week is one of the brightest and happiest of my life because I am the proud mom of an 18 month old perfectly amazing human being. And if that is not a reason to celebrate than I don't know what is.

On to less sappy topics. I took Finn to his 18 month check up today. Some good news, some potential bad news. First his stats:

Weight: 27 pounds, 13 ounces (75th percentile)
Height: 34 inches (97th percentile)

So the good news is that developmentally speaking he is right on track. In fact, the boy was showing off in front of the doctor. He said 'ball' and 'teddy' right there in front of her, almost as if he had been coached (no, I didn't....I would neeeeeevvver do anything like that). He's running, he's pointing, he's stacking blocks as tall as his head. No problem.

So the bad news is he may have a hernia. I know. Sucks. We have a consult with a (gasp) Pediatric Surgeon at Cardinal Glennon Hospital. No sense in worrying about this until we get it confirmed, and even then, it is apparently "really common" and "nothing to worry about." So that is that.