The Siberian American

Wednesday, September 18, 2019

All About Baby #2: My First and Second Trimester

I can’t believe I’m already in the third trimester with our second baby! I’ve gone back and forth on writing a full post about this pregnancy because it’s been a bit on the tough side, and I really didn’t want to make it seem like I’m complaining (I’m honestly so thankful to be pregnant, and all the difficulties are worth it). I mostly decided to write this post as a way of documenting some of this pregnancy for myself. During Anthony’s pregnancy, I wrote a daily journal about my symptoms and everything we did to prepare. This pregnancy, I haven’t written a single entry in my journal. I want to have at least some sort of record of this time, so I thought I would answer some frequently asked questions and share some more details about this pregnancy.

Was this baby planned?
First of all, why do people ask this? Does it really matter? I’ll go ahead and answer it here, but I do think it’s a strange question. Yes, this baby was planned. The smallest age gap we wanted was two years, but I honestly didn’t think I would get pregnant as quickly as I did with Anthony. It turns out I did, and I’m beyond thankful for that.

How do you feel about the age gap?
Ask me this question when the second baby is here! Haha. I’m excited to have children close together, but I know it won’t be easy at first.

How did you find out?
With Anthony I took a test while Chris was at work and told him in a creative way. This time around, I took a test while he was home on a Sunday (March 10) literally minutes before his parents came to visit. Like I said, I didn’t expect to get pregnant on the first try again, but I had been suspecting I might be pregnant for a few days because I was starting to break out pretty badly (I usually never break out, so this was a big sign for me). Chris was pretty convinced I was pregnant at that point, but I don’t like to take a test until my period is due. It took about 10 seconds to see a positive result, and we were so excited!

How far along are you? When are you due?
I’m 31 weeks! I can’t really say this pregnancy has been going quickly, but we sure have accomplished a lot in those 31 weeks. (Life update is here). My due date is November 15. If the baby isn’t late, the age gap will be exactly 24 months!

When did you start showing?
I definitely feel like I started showing faster this time around, but I think I really started to look pregnant about halfway through our trip to Europe (around 24 weeks). It’s funny because you can really see the change in our photos from the trip.

Did you have a feeling this time around whether you were having a boy or a girl?
I have felt strongly since I found out I was pregnant that I was having a girl. I was constantly doubting myself, though, because the joke is that my husband’s family is more much more likely to make boys.

Are you excited about having a girl?
I honestly would have been excited either way (I also liked the idea of having brothers close in age!), but I am definitely excited for Anthony to have a little sister. I can’t wait to see the two of them together, and I am all about the bows and dresses!

Do you have a name?
We do! We actually decided on a girl name more than ten years ago, so it will be really special to be able to use it. We didn’t have a middle name set for sure, but we have pretty much decided on that too. We don’t like to share names until birth, though a few people do know this time around because I’ve randomly shared our girl name throughout the years.

How have you been feeling?
I have been pretty open about it—this pregnancy has not been easy. I thought I had a rough time with Anthony, but this pregnancy has been much harder. I spent the first 20 weeks vomiting many times a day. Around 16 weeks I started having debilitating migraines that also caused vomiting. I would wake up in the middle of the night just to vomit. I also have a hard time breathing, and I have a lot of heartburn, which isn’t something I really dealt with during my first pregnancy. I actually mostly felt decent on our trip, though, which was a huge blessing! The vomiting just recently came back in the morning, but it’s only once a day, so it’s much easier to handle. I’m feeling quite a bit better overall the last week or so, other than pregnancy insomnia, heartburn, and normal third trimester aches and pains, so I’m hoping that the third trimester ends up being the best trimester for me! I think it’ll definitely be much better if we ever get past these 100 degree days!

Does Anthony understand he is getting a sibling?
I think he understands as well as an almost two-year-old toddler can. He loves to give my belly hugs and kisses, and he brings me toys to show to the baby. He thinks it’s hilarious when he’s sitting in my lap reading a book, and she kicks him. He did ask me the other day if there is also a baby in his belly, which was the cutest thing ever.

Have you had any cravings?
For a while, nothing really sounded good. I basically couldn’t eat chicken at all, and it honestly still barely ever sounds good to me. At first, I always wanted chips and salsa and fajitas. That craving has changed to ground beef tacos, which I basically never eat when I’m not pregnant (not that I don’t like them. I just like other Mexican food more). My biggest craving is fruit. I survived the first trimester on smoothies, and I pretty much always want peaches and watermelon.

Apparently I either don't blog at all or write over a thousand words! Honestly, it took me a few weeks to write this post, but I've also been working on a few travel posts, so I hope to have some of those ready soon.

Monday, August 12, 2019

Best Books I Read This Summer

Hey, book friends! I can't believe I haven't written a book review post since February. I was on a roll with reading until I got pregnant, and then I couldn't pick up a book for weeks. I've actually only read 15 books since the last time I posted, which is crazy to me. Also, I don't know if I just read a string of bad books, or my taste changes when I'm pregnant, but I didn't love most of what I did read. Instead of sharing all of the books I've read and a bunch of so-so reviews, I decided to pick out four of my favorite reads!

(c/o NetGalley)
It's official: I will read anything Blake Crouch writes. He has an incredible knack of mixing thrillers with science, and I'm always eager to see how the books end. I really enjoyed Recursion. It wasn't quite five stars for me because it got a little tedious towards the end (though it was still close to five stars). The concept was fascinating and really made me think. I already can't wait for his next book!

(c/o NetGalley)
I usually make it a point not to read historical fiction based in Russia, but since this is a prequel to Lilac Girls, I decided to give it a try. I liked it more than I thought I would, though definitely not as much as Lilac Girls. It seemed a little slow at the beginning, but it did pick up, and I liked the last bit of the book.

I honestly expected more from this book. I heard so many people talk about how amazing it is, and it lacked emotion for me. I think this one fell victim to too much hype for me, and I would have enjoyed it more if I didn't have high expectations going in. Overall, it's a good book. I just wasn't blown away by it.

(c/o NetGalley)
I really enjoyed this read and was surprised by how deep it was. It is one of the first books I've read that really focuses on infertility, and I was impressed with the way it was handled. There were a few things that bothered me about the way Kristen handled things, but overall, I thought it was a great read.

Linking up with Steph & Jana.

I love book suggestions. What have you read lately?

Wednesday, August 7, 2019

Quick Thoughts: Our British Isles Cruise

Hey, friends! We're back from our trip, and I am so excited to share it with y'all. I have all of these posts in my head I want to share, so hopefully I will get to at least some of them before our next baby is born (just being realistic here. Haha). This pregnancy has been rougher than my first (and my pregnancy with Anthony wasn't easy), so I usually take things one day at a time. Anyways, today I just wanted to share a few random things about our trip before I get more into the specifics.

I have been asked often if I think a cruise is a good way to see these spots, and in this case, I do. We were in each port for about 12 hours, so there was plenty of time to explore. Plus, we sailed to new destinations while we were sleeping, so it worked out better than having to drive from one place to another. The time at each port is what really sold me on this cruise, though. Honestly, we were both so exhausted from our adventures by the end of each day that we were thankful to get on the boat, relax, and watch a show. Plus, we really enjoyed the beautiful views when we sailed away from the different locations!

Speaking of exhaustion, I was a little worried about keeping up with our excursions, but thankfully, I did well! I did have to rest more than usual after climbing a bunch of stairs, but overall, I was able to do everything we wanted. The most difficult part of the cruise was when the boat rocked. It had more to do with the placement of our cabin than anything (we didn't have a choice with cabins since we had to book late due to not knowing Christopher's schedule), but I was really thankful I had just gotten over the severe nausea/vomiting I had for the first 22 weeks because I would have wanted to get off the boat. We did have one super rough night due to a storm where we barely slept, but overall, it was manageable. 

It was so fun to get to celebrate our big milestones in some stunning places! Chris got to celebrate his 30th birthday in Edinburgh, a city he has always wanted to visit, I celebrated my 30th birthday at Mont Saint-Michel in France, and we celebrated our 10-year wedding anniversary in Guernsey! 

Chris and I both admitted that this trip was just about the right length for us, and we wouldn't have wanted it to be longer. We saw so much and truly enjoyed it, but we were both exhausted by the end of it and ready to see Anthony. The jet lag was much worse than normal too, but thankfully, we're finally feeling adjusted back to Texas time!

Thursday, July 11, 2019

Life Lately: Moving, Pregnancy, and a Trip to Europe

Hey, friends! Thank you so much for all of your messages on various social media about our baby news. I was going to write a big baby post for today, but I thought I would share a broader life update and save most of the baby news for when we get back!

Photo by Brittnie Renee Photography
I’ve never been one to sugarcoat things on my blog, so I’ll start off this update by saying these last few months have been rough for us. It just felt like one thing after another (sorry to be vague; there are just some things I can’t share), and we’re both exhausted. Chris was also in the middle of intense studying for his radiology board exam from the beginning of this year until the end of June (he won’t know the results for several more weeks), which added to the chaos. This was the first time I’ve taken time off from my blog and haven’t felt guilty about it. I just couldn’t add more to my plate.

We are so excited and thankful for this second baby, but this pregnancy has been hard. I thought my nausea and vomiting was rough with Anthony, but that was nothing compared to what I’m experiencing this time. I could barely function for weeks (so thankful for my mom helping me out with Anthony!), and once the nausea got better, I got hit with intense migraine headaches. I’m still dealing with those (and honestly, still vomiting at least once most days), but I think I’m starting to see the light at the end of the tunnel.

Just to add to the fun, we moved on Tuesday! I need to go back and see how many times I’ve mentioned moving on this blog because we move an excessive amount. By an excessive amount I mean we have moved nine times in our almost ten years of marriage. I honestly didn’t want to do it again with how much we have going on right now, but it was necessary. Our rent went up so much for our townhouse (seriously, what is the deal with the rental market here?), and the place we were living in would have been crowded with two kids. We just moved into a house for the first time and signed a two-year lease, so fingers crossed we can stay put for that long! We picked this place because of the neighborhood-there is a really great park, an athletic center, and a large pond with a bunch of ducks. Have I mentioned that Chris has been on nights for the last two weeks and while this move was happening? Yep, it’s been all kinds of crazy around here.

Let’s talk about something happy now, shall we? We leave for our big trip to Europe to celebrate our big milestones (we turn 30 two days apart and then celebrate our 10th wedding anniversary two days after that) on Sunday! Once again, the timing is interesting, but it’s the only thing that worked with the dates Chris could get off work. We are flying into Dublin, Ireland and doing a 12-day cruise to several places in Ireland, Scotland, England, and a day in France. I picked a cruise because we wanted to go to lots of different places, and for once in my life, I honestly had no desire to plan. Of course, I did set up tours in various ports, but that was the extent of my planning, and I’m thankful for that.

I have been wanting to do a big Anthony update since it's been a while, and he has learned so much, but I will have to save that for when we get back! I continue to be impressed with how well he is handling the constant switching between Russian and English. He can say four-word sentences and recently learned colors (and now tells me the color of every object he sees). He also really loves to color and often asks me for his crayons and paper. He has really enjoyed exploring his new house the last few days and is excited to have a dedicated playroom until the baby moves out of our bedroom.

That's the gist of what's been happening lately. I'm hoping to share parts of our British Isles cruise on Instagram and Instagram Stories, so look for those if you're interested. I'll also hopefully be writing some more updates and travel posts when we get back!

Friday, July 5, 2019

Red, White, And...

Due with Baby #2! 
I know some of y'all had guessed why I suddenly stopped blogging again (though there was much more involved in that, and I will address most of it in a life update soon), but I am excited to share that Anthony will be a big brother this November! I will be sharing all about our newest little love next week, but I thought I would share on the blog in case y'all hadn't seen my Instagram announcement.