Twenty Months Old
Hmm, somehow it's already the middle of February. We've just finished getting over a nasty stomach bug. Luckily, it only seemed to affect Arlo for a couple hours, and it didn't hit Patrick too hard, but it took me out for most of the weekend (oh, pregnancy-impaired immune system). Patrick felt good while I was sick over the weekend, so we were hoping it had passed him by, but it hit him on Monday. The timing was good, at least--if we had all been sick at the same time, who would have gone to the store to buy coconut water and applesauce?
Here's Arlo's 20-month orange chair picture from two weeks ago. He needs another haircut, but I'm procrastinating since he didn't like his first haircutting experience that much.
Twenty months is such a great age--I think it's our favorite so far. Arlo's vocabulary has been growing really quickly. He's picking up new words every day, and he's really good at mimicking what we say. He has started identifying colors--mostly blue and yellow (any color that he doesn't know is also "blue").
Earlier, I mentioned that we were going to try putting Arlo in training pants. We haven't made much progress on that front so far. He's very excited about his new undies, but he doesn't seem to understand that they're different from cloth diapers. He'll happily walk around in wet training pants until I notice they're wet and change him into a new pair. So we can only use them when we'll be at home and I have the energy to check to see if he's wet every 20 minutes. I try to remind him that he can pee on the potty and keep his undies dry, but he's not interested. Oh well, there's no hurry to get him potty trained.
A few weeks back, Patrick took Arlo to visit our friends Nat and Sara (and their daughter Rose!) in Chicago. Initially, I was going to go too, but since we had to pay for a separate seat for Arlo (no way he'd sit patiently on our laps for such a long flight), it would have been expensive to have all three of us go. Instead, I stayed home and spent a long weekend all by myself (well, except for my easygoing in-utero friend)--the first time since Arlo was born. It was nice, but I was happy when Patrick and Arlo got home!
Arlo got to hang out with Rose, watch a Packers game, and play in the snow multiple times. It sounds like a good time :)
I don't think I posted this 24-week belly picture for baby #2.
I took it on day 1 of my Tummy Team program. I'd intended to take pictures once a week for the duration of the program, but it's Week 4, and I haven't taken any more pictures, so I guess that plan's not happening. Not that it really matters--I don't think there have been any dramatic changes in my belly's appearance. I went in for my Week 3 check last week, and my diastasis was still 3 fingers wide (it was 4 when we started). It sounds like people normally make faster progress than this, but since I started pretty late in my pregnancy, I shouldn't expect to be able to heal it completely before the baby comes. But I still feel good about the progress I'm making, and I think that these exercises will be valuable when it's time to deliver the baby. And hopefully I'll be able to heal any remaining separation pretty easily once he's born.
We're halfway through our birth preparation class (Inner Work of Birth at OHSU). The class is very different from the hypnobirthing class we took with Arlo--Inner Work of Birth is (so far) much more about talking about our feelings, rather than practicing specific techniques to use in labor (although it sounds like we'll be getting a booklet with more technique-specific advice in a later class). I think this is good for second-time moms like me, who have a previous birth experience that they want to work through (about half the women in the class are trying for VBACs, and the other half are first-time moms). I'm already feeling better about my previous labor and less apprehensive about delivering baby #2. It just helps to talk about it with people who have had a similar experience. The ultimate goal of the class is that we feel good about our birth experience, whether it ends up being a VBAC or another C-section.
I had my 27-week ultrasound and glucose screening test last week. Everything looks good (yay!)--I passed the screening test, the baby is growing well (57th percentile), and my placenta has moved away from my cervix. Can't ask for better results than that!
We just started the third trimester today. I still tend to get tired in the afternoons, and I've had a few days of back pain (probably related to carrying Arlo up and down our stairs too many times), but otherwise I'm doing well. Since we kept all of Arlo's baby stuff, our to-do list is much shorter this time around, which is awesome. The biggest thing left to do is pick out a name. We haven't made much progress on that front; we've both revisited our name lists from when I was pregnant with Arlo and have added some new names, but nothing is jumping out at us. We still have a few months. It took time for Arlo's name to feel like the right fit too, so I'm not too worried.
This baby is going to be getting a lot of hand-me-downs, but one thing Arlo won't part with (understandably) is his blankie. So a few weeks ago, I sewed up a set of blankies for baby #2 using some Japanese elephant fabric and butter yellow minky (both from Etsy). Hopefully having two will allow us to wash them on a more leisurely schedule when needed (rather than having to get them washed and dried in between naps, like we do with Arlo's blankie). They're about 12 inches on each side, and although they're not as professionally sewn as Arlo's blankie, I think this baby will like them just fine (or he'll decide that he doesn't' want to be like his big brother and will choose something else as his attachment object). Arlo took them for a test run, and he approved.
I'm not sure if it's spring cleaning or nesting (or lack of a job?), but I've been motivated to tidy up our house lately. I recycled, sold, and donated a big pile of stuff that had been collecting in our basement, and I've been working on reducing my yarn stash (I want to dig into my fabric stash too, but I'm just not feeling motivated to sew right now). Some recent projects (details on ravelry, as usual):
Bright lights cowl and hat, made using some pretty handspun that Lee gave me for my birthday (I've been saving all of her handspun because it's so special, but I've decided that I should use it!). The cowl pattern is Lee's parallel lines pattern, and the hat is Stephen West's botanic hat.
Tulip Fields Pullover - I've had this pink variegated yarn for seven years now (!). I read about the afghans for Afghans youth sweater campaign, and I decided to make a sweater to donate, using the pink yarn and some dark blue yarn that matched surprisingly well. I hope it goes to a good home!
I crocheted this super fast choker to wear to a goth/industrial night with friends last week, but then the stomach bug hit, and I didn't get to go. Too bad! (Long-time readers may recall that I spent a summer at Cornell in college, and a group of us went to the local goth night a bunch of times--I totally didn't fit in, but it was fun!) Anyway, I'm not sure how much I'll wear this in my normal life, but it was easy to make, and it's pretty.
And finally, a roundup of meals we've had recently that were worth making again:
Early bird granola - This was super good--it seems like a special occasion granola, since it's pretty sweet. I cut the maple syrup down to 1/2c, and it was still plenty sweet.
Chicken parmesan - Fast and tasty. Yay for having a working broiler!
Roasted broccoli with shrimp - Quick, healthy, and tasty; the only drawback is that shrimp is expensive. We ate this over rice, next time I might try quinoa.
Indonesian coconut rice with chicken and zucchini - Very nice. Next time I would shred the chicken before serving.
Buttermilk roast chicken, green bean salad with pickled red onions and almonds, and roasted potatoes - The chicken tasted good, but the texture made it seem a little undercooked, which was off-putting to me (Patrick didn't seem to mind). The green bean salad was yummy (and Arlo loved the pickled onions--what a surprise!).
Pulled pork sandwiches with coleslaw - You have to be around the house much of the day to make this recipe, but it's not too much work. Still, I bet there's a crockpot recipe out there that would give similar results with a smaller time investment.
Not a recipe exactly, but we had some friends over to play board games on Superbowl Sunday, and Patrick made a big batch of nachos with refried beans and cheese (with an array of optional toppings) for dinner. Yum! Maybe we should make this a Superbowl tradition.
Easy egg custard - I made this for Arlo and me to eat at snacktime, but he refused to try it. I loved it though, especially as a dip for apple slices. I might reduce the sugar a little next time, since I've got the same heightened sensitivity to sugar that I had when I was pregnant with Arlo, and eating two servings of custard (I couldn't let Arlo's go to waste!) made me feel yucky.