36 weeks, 5 days

Wednesday, April 23, 2014


And counting. Just kidding (sort of). I figured that I better get another maternity post in before this babe decides to make his appearance (although he seems pretty comfy in there right now). My maternity tops and dresses are starting to not really fit right (I keep thinking that I shrunk things in the wash and then realize that it's just my continuously expanding belly). I have the threatening start of a stretch mark on my right hip, but I guess I can't complain too much because my stomach is still unscathed. Since I'm sure you're all fascinated by my mundane pregnancy symptoms, I also am having lots of trouble sleeping like every single other pregnant person at the end of her third trimester. I'm not sure though if every other pregnant 36-weeker has the crazy hormones that have manifested themselves this week. One minute I'm crying, the next super mad, the next not wanting to talk to anyone - it's like high school PMS x 100. In my defense, the worse day was yesterday after I spent hours awake in bed after 3:30 a.m. (no sleep + pregnancy hormones = craziness apparently). Poor Stephen does not know what to do with himself.


Otherwise things are going well. I don't feel nearly as bad as I envisioned almost full-term would feel. I've been exercising every day (my mom is doing my pregnancy DVDs with me which is awesome). I'm alternating days with this DVD and this one along with walking most days. In case you are judging my over-motivation, I'm really just scared of drug-free labor (which is my plan thus far). We had our 37 week prenatal today and things looked good - baby is still measuring on or just under target and my doctor assures me that I am not carrying an enormous baby.

And Friday is our rural medicine convocation (graduation with our whole class is in May, right around my due date so we shall see if I venture there or not). That M.D. is so close I can touch it...but at the moment I'm just happy that tomorrow is my last day in the cardiac cath lab.

Jacket: Old Navy (old, similar)
Scarf: J. Crew Factory (old, similar)
Shoes: Madewell (old, similar)
Dress: Gap

Five Favorites this week:

1. This perfect swimsuit which is 50% off today (I reaaaallly want to order it because it looks like a perfect postpartum suit but have no idea what size to get).
2. Anna's tips on remixing/packing lightly (I own super similar pieces to most of these so I definitely bookmarked this for the future).
3. This totally inappropriate/irreverent (consider yourself forewarned) birth story that had me in stitches: (part onepart twopart three). 
4. Grace's new arrival...Since she was due two weeks ahead of me reality is striking that I will actually be birthing a human person in the very near future.
5. J. Crew's May Style Guide - love, love almost all of these looks (especially those aqua pants, all the linen tops, and that black and white dress).

Linking up with Hallie and the Pleated Poppy


Final days...

Thursday, April 17, 2014




I just realized that this is probably the last post that I will ever write about a day in medical school, since next week is my last week ever as a med student. This month is an elective for me, and I ended up on neurology and cardiology thanks to waiting until the last minute to pick something (let's face it, at this point in my medical school career and pregnancy, I'm pretty much just ready to be done so did I care? Not really). I actually did put a little thought into it, since both cardio and neuro should help me as an ER resident, but my super prego self just kind of wanted an easy rotation (not cardio or neuro, but oh well).

My first two weeks on neurology were actually pretty great. I didn't get done early most days (an end-of-fourth-year med student's main goal) but I did learn a lot of useful information, saw some interesting cases, and enjoyed working with the quirky-fun neurologists. Then I started cardiology yesterday, which did not go so well. I was in the cath lab, which is pretty interesting when it involves MI treatment, stent placements, etc. but most definitely not when it comes to ablations (I didn't even know until yesterday that a cardiac electrophysiology fellowship existed and let me tell you, it is not for me). The first case was 6 hours long - and that 6 hours mostly involved watching multiple computer screens while looking for an electrical focus that was causing thousands of PVCs in a patient. I should also mention that I was wearing close to 20 pounds of lead protective gear due to the radiation used during the ablation. I really wasn't too keen on being in the room at all, but I was assured by the physician that it was "no big deal" and by the nurses that "all our babies have turned out ok so far" (that kind of reassurance makes me a little nervous). Anyways, 20 pounds of lead + 20+ pounds of baby/prego weight = a lot of discomfort. Of course I also forgot to wear my support hose yesterday (worse.decision.ever). The first 6 hour case made me think about what it would feel like to watch paint dry. Furthermore, when the cardiologist finally thought he fixed the guy (and I was breathing a hundred sighs of relief) he started having PVCs again. Funny part was that the cardiologist was going on about how the "world-renowned facility" that the guy had gone to before for an ablation failed (also happens to be the institution where I'm going for residency, but I didn't tell him that) but he was personally able to fix the guy due to his "100% success rate" (cardiologists are very modest people) right when the PVCs started up again. At that point I decided that the baby and I had enough (the baby hated the lead by the way - he was kicking up against that silly lead apron like there was no tomorrow) and headed down for lunch and a short siesta in our student lounge. I texted Stephen about how miserable I was (misery loves company) and his advice was to leave, but the overachiever in me just couldn't do it....well, until 5 p.m. rolled around.

As you can see from the above picture, baby is growing like wildfire. Lately I've had my normal scrub pants rolled way down below my belly and haven't even attempted my normal scrub top (the size large that I am wearing apparently has arms cut for a linebacker but is definitely more bump-friendly). The last few days I've been a little 'snappy' as Stephen puts it and I've been getting annoyed by all the peeps staring at my bump. I texted Stephen the scrub-bump picture right after I had texted him that "I can't believe all these people staring at my stomach, haven't they seen a pregnant belly before? And it's not even that big!" Stephen never replied to that, since I realized the irony in my words when I took another look at the picture. The nurses I'm working with keep saying how they can't believe I'm 36 weeks, blah blah, I don't look pregnant from behind [what does that mean anyways] etc.; I don't really believe it but I appreciate their attempts at making me feel better about my large self.

So there you have it, my last post about a day in medical school...a little bittersweet maybe, but mostly just sweet.

Quick Takes: Maternity pics + updates

Friday, April 11, 2014

1. So I was originally planning on sharing seven of our maternity pictures and then linking up with Jen, but I couldn't pick just seven...

{all pictures by Jillian J Photography}

Outfit details: Wrap Dress//Fuchsia Top//Jeans//Navy Top
























I'm so happy that we have these pictures to remember such a special time in our lives.

2. We had a surprise ultrasound yesterday after I went in for my appointment to check the baby's weight and amniotic fluid index along with cervical length and placental position. We hadn't seen the little guy since 22 weeks, so it was pretty darn exciting. Stephen was super nervous because we watched What to Expect When You're Expecting on our mini-babymoon and one of the babies came out a girl when they thought it was a boy (Stephen was already worried about this). The first thing they saw when the put the probe on my belly was the baby's boy parts (picture was way too graphic or I would post ha) and the beaming look on Stephen's face was priceless.

His profile

Face shadows + chubby cheeks

3. So aside from the fact that we know the baby is still a boy, we also know that he is head down (I was 99.9% sure of this already), he is on the smallish side (currently 5 lbs 2 oz and 39th percentile), and his feet and hands were just where I thought they were based on all the crazy movement I've been feeling. His rather large foot was wedged right up against my uterus, which explains a lot ;) We also don't have the official report back, but I'm pretty sure that the placenta previa they saw earlier in my pregnancy is completely resolved and that my cervix is not doing anything (I couldn't see the screen when they checked but Stephen claims it looked like a little slit and then proceeded to demonstrated this by tightly closing and rolling in his lips). It's is a little shocking to me based on the amount of cramping I've had over the last two weeks, but a good thing I guess since I'm not full-term yet.

4. I told my doctor that if the babe comes late I'm going to freak out because of all the cramping I've had...and she told me that she'd be shocked if he's late, which makes me feel better but not completely. I'm 35 weeks but starting to feel ready to be done...I got some prescription compression stockings this week (sexy) which has helped my leg cramps (the only really unbearable pregnancy symptom I've had) as has walking...although I still really miss the elliptical. My weight gain is at 23 pounds and I'm crossing my fingers that I stick to 25 pounds total...but I realize that it might not be realistic (and obviously there are more important things to worry about than my vanity).

5. I realized that I hadn't done any pregnancy reading yet, so I picked up Ina May's Guide to Childbirth (a little weird so far, but also has some great tips on having a natural labor) along with Happiest Baby on the Block. I've heard good things about The Baby Whisperer and The Womanly Art of Breastfeeding, but being honest with myself I'll be lucky if I get through the first two books (and I'm planning on using my mom, who breastfed 8 kids, as my breastfeeding resource).

6. If you are a fellow preggo (and I'm guessing if you've made it this far into this post that you are) you can enter a giveaway for $25 to Pink Blush Maternity here. They have a ton of cute and reasonable things (I really, really want this maxi dress).

7. Lastly, I just loved Grace's link up of wedding first dance songs. It did a preggo soul good to reminisce about our wedding day and rewatch our wedding video (happy tears are therapeutic).

Have a lovely weekend.


First Dance

Thursday, April 10, 2014


So probably the best time to be writing this post is not when I'm a ball of 35 weeks prego hormones, but here it goes anyways. Grace had the stellar idea to share our first dance song, so it opened the door for some wedding reminiscing. Stephen and I are coming up on our second anniversary and my sister Maria keeps saying that I need to change my blog description since it still says that I'm newly married. In some ways I guess she's right (things are definitely different since the moment that we looked at each other bright-eyed and a little naive at the altar)...but I still feel like we are freshly married since I know that we have so, so much left to learn about marriage and each other. The challenges and experiences we've been through since our wedding day have purified and enriched our relationship, and as we've learned more about each other's faults (I still feel like I have way more than Stephen) we've also learned more about the sacrificial side of married love. And in spite of (or because of) it all, I still look at Stephen and wonder how God blessed me with such a kind, wonderful, and loving husband (who also happens to be handsome too, ha).



For our first dance, we chose Till Kingdom Come, the Coldplay version. We didn't have a song that was particularly meaningful to our relationship (well, besides this song by Airborne Toxic Event that was playing the night we met and also fitting since we met sometime around midnight - it's not exactly appropriate or fitting for a wedding dance though). We both love Coldplay - the concert they did in the stadium at Michigan State is one of our top 10 favorite things we've done together - and I love, love the lyrics of Till Kingdom Come.

"Til Kingdom Come"
Steal my heart and hold my tongue.
I feel my time, my time has come.
Let me in, unlock the door.
I've never felt this way before.

The wheels just keep on turning,
The drummer begins to drum,
I don't know which way I'm going,
I don't know which way I've come.

Hold my head inside your hands,
I need someone who understands.
I need someone, someone who hears,
For you, I've waited all these years.

For you, I'd wait 'til kingdom come.
Until my day, my day is done.
And say you'll come, and set me free,
Just say you'll wait, you'll wait for me.

In your tears and in your blood,
In your fire and in your flood,
I hear you laugh, I heard you sing,
"I wouldn't change a single thing."

The wheels just keep on turning,
The drummers begin to drum,
I don't know which way I'm going,
I don't know what I've become.

For you, I'd wait 'til kingdom come,
Until my days, my days are done.
Say you'll come and set me free,
Just say you'll wait, you'll wait for me.
Just say you'll wait, you'll wait for me.
Just say you'll wait, you'll wait for me.


One of the things that I reeeaaallly wanted to do before the wedding was take dance lessons, but medical school got in the way of it and we never had time. So instead a friend of mine who is a dance teacher came over a couple nights before the wedding and gave us a mini-lesson. Funny thing is that when it was time for the real deal, I got flustered after a couple steps (Stephen was just fine even though I am usually the dancer in the relationship) and we went back to regular old 6th grade slow dancing.

And some reception pictures. Stephen's not a big dancer normally (I usually have to drag him out onto the dance floor when we go to weddings) but we both danced like crazies during our wedding reception. One of the highlights was when we both were picked up in chairs for the Horah (wedding dance courtesy of my Jewish relatives).







And, our wedding video (password is HoEnkE)...it's 35 min long; you can skip ahead to our wedding dance at 29:45 (I just rewatched it and it made my cry - no surprise there).


Hoenke 2012 from MQTcinemaCOALiTiON on Vimeo.

Pink Blush giveaway + what I wore Weds

Wednesday, April 9, 2014


I wore this outfit out to dinner with Stephen the other night and he approved. 


I'm discovering that it isn't exactly easy to find things to wear these last weeks of pregnancy; a lot of my former favorite shirts don't quite reach over the belly anymore. But this tunic is perfect: I love the length, it fits without looking like a tent, and it's my favorite shade of burgundy. It's also wonderfully versatile (with a scarf, cardi, vest, jeans, leggings, etc.) which is a must for maternity wear since the same few pieces end up on repeat. I had a hard time deciding on this tunic though, because Pink Blush has so much great maternity wear (their maternity clothing is both trendy and reasonably priced!). Some of my favorite maternity clothes on their site: this top and this one, this dress (which I reaaaallly want but is probably not practically with only a few weeks left to go) and this skirt. They're graciously giving away a $25 gift card to a reader, and you can enter below...


And 5 favorites this week (clearly last rotation of med school = lots of time on Pinterest):

1. This quote (a beautiful life philosophy)
2. Pink peonies (so gorgeous and spring-y)
3. Such a pretty dress, courtesy of Boden
4. A lovely, simple outfit (and another one)
5. And lastly, this video on real beauty that I saw on the Today Show this morning (made me cry - thank you pregnancy hormones).


Booties: Sam Edelman (thrifted)

Linking up with Pleated Poppy and Hallie


a Rafflecopter giveaway

WIWS + a mini babymoon

Sunday, April 6, 2014



Dress: Isabella Oliver via Ebay
Scarf: Forever XXI
Boots: Frye


The snow is finally melting and all that I can think about is this song. And the fact that I will be taking a walk every evening this week if it truly stays in the 40s and 50s. I'm now banned from the elliptical (which makes me very, very sad) but I guess it's ok if I can drag Stephen around the block with me like I did tonight. It was a shocking revelation though that my legs felt like lead - not sure if it is the fact that my activity has been restricted this week, our 3 hour car trip today, or the extra 20+ pounds I'm carrying around with me...


We're on the homestretch, 34 weeks + 2 days. I had to show Stephen this picture to confirm that my bump really is this big and the picture isn't just emphasizing it, but he assures me that this picture is true to life and he thinks the bump is awesome (while simultaneously claiming that it's not that big - liar). This week the little babe grew more than I've ever noticed before - I literally woke up one morning and noticed that my belly button was tight and pulled down into this funny shape due to the rapid expansion of my uterus. Pregnancy is truly amazing.


And we went on a babymoon of sorts this weekend. We originally really wanted to go to Florida, but no matter how hard I tried we just couldn't make it work because of the expensive flights and my limited time off. It's a good thing that we didn't plan anything major, because I started having a lot of cramping this week. I'm still too inexperienced to know if they are contractions or not, but they certainly aren't painless and I've had some signs of cervical change so we are being really careful. My doctor had me home resting for part of the week and we cautiously went away for a night to a nice hotel with a jacuzzi tub in the room (all I really wanted - at a pregnancy-safe temperature of course). The hotel was near Marian shrine that Stephen and I have visited a few times, so we went to mass there today and lit a candle for our little baby.

Happy Sunday! I hope it was lovely.

Linking up with WIWS and Sunday Style.

What I Wore Sunday + 33 weeks

Sunday, March 30, 2014


Scarf: Etsy
Shirt: Target maternity
Skirt: J. Crew

I just realized that today's outfit is reeeallly similar to this one. Oh well...my continuously dwindling wardrobe definitely makes it easier to decide what to wear. 

The priest at mass tonight (who I just love...he always gives the baby a blessing when I go up for communion) encouraged us to think back on our lives to moments where we really felt God's presence, look back on these moments with gratitude, and keep them in mind as times of light when we feel like we are facing darkness. I thought that was really beautiful, and I guess I have some soul-searching to do. A couple times that immediately came to my mind were the missions to Ecuador that I did at Franciscan and our wedding day.


I can't believe that we are 33+ weeks. It still seems surreal that we'll meet our little guy in just a few more weeks. I feel like his little personality shows more and more...he is incredibly active (he contorts my stomach into some crazy shapes) and he always moves around more when there is music (he's actually been doing this since 24-ish weeks)...he hates when I cross my arms over my belly (tries to kick them off) or lean my stomach against pretty much anything. Despite how excited we are to meet him, I think I'll miss him in my belly a little...but I won't miss the awful leg cramps, heartburn, or anxiety (although I hear it only gets worse when they are out in the real world).


Linking up with Fine Linen and Purple.