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Baby Haul 1

18 Oct

Aside from cloth diapers, I haven’t bought anything for the baby. But we have almost everything we need in terms of clothes. All of them given by or lent by friends. Mostly pyjamas, cardigans and coats for winter – since I’m giving birth in December. Hindi kaya ng diapers + Guitar sando dito.

But I still wanted to get things for her that I chose myself. Para special naman ng slight.

Good thing the husband and I agree on 1 thing – no pink!! Yes, it’s a girl but no, she doesn’t need to be stereotyped. Naks. It doesn’t make sense but the bottom line is, we do not like pink.

Her nursery will be lilac, light green, light blue, and silver/cream. Her diapers are mostly neutral with uber cute prints.

I like warm colors. No apple green/orange combos please. Let’s leave that on the toys and other stimulating activities and not on my baby.

As you can see, this haul is mostly sober colors and autumn-y.

I love the silver bird detail on this pyjama.

These I got because the striped onesie is cute and they come in 3 packs. I think I paid 9€ for the pack. Not bad.

These I love. Even though they don’t open up in front. The colors are neutral and I love the decals in front of the onesies. They’re sort of seude-ish. Just the right mix of color and style.

A bit boring some might say, but I prefer these than those horrible t-shirts filled with cartoon characters. So un-chic.

 

But who knows, one day the little critter will decide she wants a giant picture of Dora on her shirt and redecorate her room in all pink.

 

For now, c’est moi qui decide!

33 week update

16 Oct

Yes! Nearly there. I am now 33 weeks and 2 days. They let me go home from the hospital at 31 weeks and 4 days. Ever since then, I have been chillin’ it out at home. Making sure the little one bakes in the oven a little longer.

The last 2 visits made by the midwife were good. In an hour of monitoring, 0 contractions.

I had a bit of a scare over the weekend. I thought my water started to leak and so I was stressing so bad I wasn’t able to sleep well. The forums on the internet didn’t help at all.

I asked my midwife about it yesterday and he said it wasn’t my water leaking and that I shouldn’t stress at all since the I wasn’t having contractions and the baby is doing real well. That assured me a lot. Whew!

Today, G and I went to the hospital for the follow up ultrasound and doctor’s appointment. It was a fun outing – especially after having been cooped up at home for weeks. The weather was even cooperative.

The little one now weighs 2.1 kilos. A very good weight for her age and the doctor said she has a good mop of hair already and is quite chubby. How cute is that. As usual, we couldn’t really make anything out on the screen, but we were shown the usual limbs, her ear, and organs. We weren’t able to see her face coz she was shy and she was moving a heck of a lot!

I’ve gained 2.8 kilos since last month’s’check up. Not bad. My cervix hasn’t changed since my hospital stint 2 weeks ago. What a relief!

A few more days and the 34 week goal will be reached. Everyone from my midwife to the ultrasound doctor told me that that’s a very positive sign. I just need to keep on resting and not to exert any unnecessary effort.

The problem is that my family’s arriving on Sunday and I’m super excited. I know I won’t be able to really “rest” while they’re here but I’ll try. I’m sure my mom’s gonna make sure I rest in bed anyway – while they go out and explore Paris. Boo!!!

I’m so excited!!!

Semi Free at last

28 Sep

I’m finally off the line but not off the hook yet. After 48 hours of anti-contraction meds and meds to develop the baby’s lungs, they finally took out the dextrose.

No more lugging around that huge pole and huge syringe dispenser contraption. That was driving me crazy. It kept on beeping every couple of hours or so to be refilled.

They’re still planning on keeping me for another week though, until I get to 32 weeks just for observation and if ever the little one decided to make her grand appearance earlier than expected, we’ll be taken into care right away.

I’m just on oral contraction meds now. I haven’t needed to take the stronger one, so that’s a relief. I think I can now distinguish between a contraction and the baby just kicking up a storm.

We’re just taking it day by day for now. A day earned is a day earned for the baby’s development. There’s still a big chance that I’ll give birth prematurely but definitely not today and not this early.

Whew! Hang on little one! You’ll get your chance to see the world soon. But for now, stay where you are!!!!

30 week update

27 Sep

Aaaannddd…I’m back. At the hospital I mean.

I was supposed to do this awesome 30 week update on how I managed to stay that long on bed rest. I was just waiting for my midwife’s visit to take a photo of the monitoring paper thing showing no contractions so I can show the world how good it’s coming along.

But chances were not on my favor. Although I was feeling well and not feeling anything/contractions, the machine begged to disagree.

I was having contractions every 2 minutes.

Scared the heck out of me. My midwife told me to go to the ER to get checked up coz my cervix might have modified again.

So here I am, confined at the hospital since Tuesday afternoon. My cervix has shortened again to 10 mm and is a bit dilated. The bebe is really low too.

Diagnosis: severe danger of premature birth (I’m just translating from french, I’m not sure about the real english translation)

At 30 weeks, it’s really early and the baby will definitely need to stay at the NICU for a long long time. Good thing the meds they gave me was able to limit the contractions to a normal level/frequence.

So they’re keeping me here for a couple of days to make sure all’s well and stable. So far, so good. I think all the crazy activity from last week was what triggered it. Now I’m promising myself more self restrain and to really just stick to lounging on the bed the whole time.

Wish us luck!!

Cloth diapering in France

21 Sep

Ehhhhh? Say what??

That’s right. We are cloth diapering. Chances are, like ALL of our friends, you’ll think we’re crazy. Adding all that laundry work when you’re a new mom is like suicide, you might say. And then the age old question, “What about the poop”

If you search about cloth diapers on the internet, you’ll find thousands of blogs and videos and reviews on cloth diapers. Why one should cloth diaper, the hardships of cloth diapering, etc.

My mom cloth diapered my last 2 brothers. Okay, that was like 20 years ago and things have changed. My aunt cloth diapered all 4 of her boys, the youngest being almost 2 years old. So that’s pretty recent – and cloth diapers have changed all those years. And they are oh so cute nowadays and easy to use, even for poopophobia’d dads.

So we, mostly I, decided to cloth diaper. Surprisingly, the husband was 100% supportive of it.

I didn’t jump on the bandwagon halfheartedly either. I did a ton of research before deciding to go for it. Here are a couple of things I considered and I found out.

Things I considered

  1. I said my mom and aunt cloth diapered. Well, the difference is – they had nannies to do the nappy changes and more importantly, they had household help to do the laundry. I on the other hand will have to do everything.
  2. We only have a washing machine. No dryer. We only just line dry. Out on the balcony in summer and inside the house in winter. I will be giving birth in winter.
  3. In winter, our bulky clothes usually line dry in 2 days. But the sheets and shirts can dry in a day or so, near the heater or in the bathroom.
  4. After my maternity leave, we’ll leave the baby either in daycare or with a nanny. Will they/she be willing to continue cloth diapering then? This is important so I would know if I should really invest in cloth diapers.
  5. Cloth diapers are expensive when you first buy them and you don’t save money until a few months later. So, how much are we willing to spend considering that we don’t know how long we will be cloth diapering.
  6. The husband is all thumbs when it comes to tiny things – so I had to think about ease of use for him.

So with all that in mind, I went around blogs, forums, YouTube and learned a couple of things.

Things I learned

  1. There less French websites/blogs/videos about cloth diapering that American ones. French moms don’t post their stash nor do reviews on diapers on YouTube. And I like watching more than reading.
  2. Cloth diapers and accessories are waaaayyyyy more expensive here than in the US.
  3. French moms have a slightly different way of prepping and maintaining their cloth dipes.
  4. There are a lot of types and styles and systems of cloth diapers and one can easily get confused as to which system is best.
  5. The most budget friendly system is the prefolds + covers. But it’s so hard to find newborn prefolds in France.
  6. Buying used is less expensive but you have to be careful who you buy from – and also, if you don’t mind used dipes on your baby’s butt.
  7. It’s quite easy to wash cloth diapers but you just need to be careful. It does add a bit to your household chores. But with a newborn, you’ll probably be washing more often anyway.
  8. You can wash dirty dipes with other clothes. It is possible but I don’t think I’d want to.
  9. You’ll need at least 24 diapers to be able to do laundry every other day – that’s with a dryer, I think. I’d need more since I can only line dry.
  10. You need special laundry soap for cloth diapers.
  11. You should not buy too much of one brand/style because if it doesn’t work for you, you would have wasted money on that stash.
  12. You can recover a bit of money by selling the diapers your baby has outgrown or the ones that don’t work for you.
  13. Cuteness factor x 100.

photo source

You’ll surely find more if you google a bit. But these are what stuck to me the most.

In the end, I chose to do mostly prefolds and covers and a couple of pocket diapers. I’ll probably do a post on my modest stash soon. I got most of my information on YouTube videos since it’s more “realistic”. Mostly american/english videos. Although there are a couple of super useful French sites on cloth diapering.

La Bourse Aux Couches Lavables – A very helpful forum on cloth diapering. Moms buy and sell used and sometimes even new diapers for good prices. If you haven’t had a lot of support from your friends then I suggest you go to this forum and talk to a few of the very helpful moms who have cloth diapered and survived. I spent most of my free time browsing through the forum.

Bulle de Coton – The official site of the Association pour la promotion des Couches Lavables. It’s has good information on the types of diapering systems, prepping, washing. It also has a list, albeit outdated, of sites where one can buy diapers, materials for making diapers, and rental services.

Les Couches Lavables.com –  I think this is sponsored by one of the best cloth diapering stores in France, LiliNappy. One can get basically the same information as in Bulle de Coton: types of diapers, washing, a few reviews.

Where to order online

LiliNappy – I love this store. They have the widest selection of brands I’ve seen so far. The site is easy to navigate through and they have a Destockage area where they regularly post discounted diapers. Free shipping from 79 Euros.

Bebe Au Naturelle – A good site when there are promos. But the selection is a bit limited. They sell other organic products for moms, the house, etc. I think the prices are cheaper than lilinappy by like 1 euro or something like that. Free delivery on most items – but at a Colis Relais, not at home.

TimTam Nature – I haven’t ordered anything from them yet since I prefer LiliNappy. Prices are a bit higher as well.

ApiNapi – Prices on this site are uber expensive. The only advantage is that they have a physical store in Paris and that can be helpful for moms thinking about cloth diapering. They also hold introduction classes on cloth diapering and using baby carriers and such.

Melicott – I like this site mostly for the Thirsties covers. They have the cheapest Thirsties covers so far. Though you do have to pay for shipping even if you buy a lot.

Eco-bebe – A wide selection of branded as well as the more affordable diapers. Although I don’t really like them because it seems that they’re selling those china diapers one can get for 4/5 euros at 10 euros.  They do have videos of how each diaper works so it’s very helpful.

There are more sites around and you can get good deals if you wait for the sale season and some sites do offer promos every now and then.

I hope this helped you out a bit. Especially english speaking moms in France who are thinking about cloth diapering.

I’d be happy to hear your point of view on this.

The inevitable “what about me” drama

20 Sep

I know being on bedrest has been easier for me than it has been for the husband. He has been the one doing all the work: grocery shopping, the laundry, the dishes, random errands. And all that after a long day at work.

So I was glad when he told me he would be going out with friends this week. He deserves a bit of “me time”. I’m fine as long as I have something for dinner. He went grocery shopping and bought enough food for me to heat up for this week.

So he went out Tuesday night. But didn’t do the dishes – hasn’t done the dishes since the weekend. So I, who’s supposed to be “resting” had to do the dishes. I only washed what I needed and that already resulted to some contractions. Yikes. But I let it pass.

The next morning, before going to work, he did all the dishes. Fine. Good job,  A for effort.

Last night he went out again. He came home super sick and drunk. Nice! I had to take care of him and make sure he doesn’t get sicker or choke or something. I, of course I couldn’t sleep unless he was well enough not to get sick while sleeping. I didn’t mind doing that. He is after all my ourson a moi and I don’t want any harm to come to him. So I did really want to take care of him – even if it took more effort than washing a couple of plates.

The thing is, it’s just funny how the roles of being taken care of and the caretaker can switch automatically.

I get angry when he doesn’t do household chores and I end up doing them when I’m on bedrest but I don’t even think twice about cleaning up after him when he’s sick all over the place.

I wanted him to take a break from taking care of me but at the same time I wanted him not to want to take a real break. You know what I mean? He should not have that much fun as to forget about me and my situation.

Complicated, I know. But women can be complicated and add overactive hormones to that, well, you get a crazy wife.

Anyway, that’s this week’s drama. I guess we still need to work on this new routine (me not doing anything and him needing to do housework and clean).

On a positive note, this is good practice for when the bebe arrives. Right? Right?

I couldn’t stay mad at him because I know I need to cut him some slack and besides, he’s too mignon and I just couldn’t resist.

So tonight, he’s out again with friends. But this time around he came home first to make me dinner and tomorrow’s lunch and promised he won’t get drunk tonight. How sweet is that?

Oral glucose tolerance test

11 Sep

I was up and about early yesterday for my oral glucose tolerance test to check for gestational diabetes. It’s usually done around 26-28 weeks of pregnancy. And it’s horrible.

 

Basically, you need to go to the lab early in the morning “a jeun” with this:

 

A sachet of pure glucose powder. First they draw blood, a jeun. Then they make you drink 75g of sugar diluted in water. Disgusting. Then you wait an hour, they draw blood again. Then you wait another hour, and they draw blood again.

 

A jeun means you shouldn’t eat nor drink anything before going there. So you get up, take a shower and go. We left the house at 7:45 because the husband wanted to help me go down the four flight of stairs from our flat. How sweet. So I was at the pharmacy to buy my glucose at 7:50. Except that they open at 8. I go to the ATM to get cash, it was out of service. Nice.

So I decided to go to the lab anyway and just buy my glucose when the pharmacy opens in a few minutes. Good thing I did that because there was a long line at the lab and I was able to buy what I needed waaayyy before it was my turn.

I don’t mind being pricked and prodded. But waiting in a small room for almost 3 hours and having to drink that horrible horrible concoction really killed me.

The taste was just indescribable but it smelled and tasted nasty. My doctor actually told me that I can add a bit of lemon in it, but I thought she was exaggerating. Well, she wasn’t. It’s not even like unflavored soda. It was just BEURK! I’d rather eat a kilo of Fraises Tagada than drink this stuff.

I think I had a few contractions while waiting and almost fainted after drinking all that sugar. The lab technician said that it’s normal to feel that way after drinking all that sugar. I was super hot, dizzy, I felt like I needed to vomit and my heart was beating uber fast it was scary.

 

Anyway, I left the lab at around 11ish and was super hungry. I haven’t eaten since 7 am and for a pregnant woman, that’s like torture.

So to compensate myself for being brave and patient, I went to get McDonald’s for lunch and got me a maxi BigMac meal. I know, I know, it’s not healthy, etc etc. But I really needed something to take my mind off that glucose drink. Yuck.

 

I won’t know the results until later today. I’m hoping it’s all negative so I can continue eating Nutella every morning and finishing 1 bar of Nestle Crunch in one sitting.

 

Kidding! Kidding!