Waiting for Baby Barton Number Two

A little under two years ago we published our first blog Waiting for Baby Barton . After a fairly lengthy TTC process, I was 37 weeks pregnant with our first baby and we were eagerly anticipating baby’s arrival.

Now that sweet baby boy is a cheeky toddler, two months shy of his second birthday and soon to be a big brother. And I am again 37 weeks pregnant.

It all seems so surreal. Some days I still can’t quite believe that within the next few weeks we will be a family of four and will have a tiny newborn again.

But then my giant belly, constant braxton hicks, aching back and constipation reminds me that it is in fact real! Oh the joys of the final month of pregnancy. When simple tasks of rolling over in bed, putting shoes on or bathing the toddler are like doing a workout. I love it though, and try to never take the blessing of pregnancy for granted.

It’s funny, it feels like so much has changed since last time and yet it’s so familiar too. Again wondering what will our baby look like? Will it be a boy or a girl? How and when will I go into labour? Will I be a good mum?

I guess it’s always the same questions no matter how many children you have.

But, the bassinet is ready and the baby clothes are washed and folded. The hospital bags are in various stages of packed and the car seat ready to be installed. Dad is counting down the days to his parental leave and keeping fingers crossed baby stays in until then. While Mum is savouring these last weeks of pregnancy and preparing mind and body for birth. All the while big brother is blissfully unaware of what’s to come.

Montage

To you my big boy, mummy loves you so much. You will be the most wonderful big brother. It is a big responsibility being the eldest but I know you will take it all in your stride and continue to be the funny, loving, cheeky boy that you are.

And to my second little love curled up safely in my tummy, it will soon be time to come and meet us my precious one. Scary I know, but I promise it will all be okay and we will all be together soon.

Until then….we wait…

My Pregnancy ‘Survival’ Kit

I am now well into the third trimester of pregnancy number two so I thought I would share some of my favorite things to use, do and have during pregnancy.

So, in no particular order here are some of my tips, tricks and favorite things for ‘surviving’ pregnancy.


Supplements

Now, it can be hard in those early days to just keep your breakfast down let alone a truck load of pills and potions, but optimum health is super important throughout pregnancy. Especially in those early days. I am a fairly avid vitamin taker anyway but I do switch it up slightly when pregnant.

I chose to take Nutriway. They are completely organic and actually contain food, plant and minerals; nothing synthetic which I love. Double X is my base daily habit to which I add Omega 3, Cal Mag (great for managing cramps and restless legs), Tri-Iron and Folic, Vitamin C (helps to absorb the iron and keep away nasty colds), Fruit & Veg (to supplement all the carbs and chocolate I’m inhaling) and Vitamin B if I need some extra energy. Admittedly, I haven’t taken Omega 3 since my first trimester because it was making me vomit… boo!

A Pregnancy Pillow

This is an absolute must! Now there are some super amazing, mega expensive options when it comes to maternity pillows. Mine however, is a humble body pillow that has seen three women through two pregnancies each so it is on its last legs. But it gets the job done. Perfect for supporting my belly as it grows and supporting my top leg to help keep hips aligned. It is a bit of an intimacy killer and takes up a fair bit of room in the bed, especially with husband, toddler and belly all fighting for space. But totally necessary for a good night sleep.

Exercise

I like to keep as fit as possible during pregnancy. I’m not a fitness junkie or anything but there are a few things I do to try to keep active (after all, it is all labour preparation!).

Obviously, being a post natal fitness instructor, Kangatraining is a regular part of my routine with two classes per week. I also do high intensity weight training (once a week is all I need) and I’ve done a bit of prenatal yoga which I’ll talk about a bit more later. When all else fails you can’t go wrong with walking, even if it’s at a snails’ pace and more like a waddle. I sometimes get cramps or braxton hicks when walking so I just take it easy.

Maternity Clothes

There are so many great brands out there now with gorgeous clothes for pregnant and nursing mothers. But some can be quite expensive. There are however, a few key pieces I rely on to get me through.

It has been a super hot summer here in Brisbane so my denim maternity shorts (one a cheapie pair from Kmart and the other slightly fancier pair from Jeans West) have been a definite wardrobe staple. I love a good maternity body con dress for when you need to dress up a little or just feel like showing off your bump. I have a casual one from Kmart and two from ASOS that are more fancy.

But I have to say what I have been living in the most is my Cadenshae active wear. The smoothie crop is so comfortable and perfect to double as a bikini top. And the bamboo casual tanks are the bees knees. Roomy enough to still fit my 33 week bump and easy to breastfeed in once bub arrives with extra large arm holes.

When it comes to active wear I also highly recommend the Enji maternity activewear pants and 2XU pregnancy compression tights.

Raspberry Leaf Tea

If you’re pregnant, you’ve probably heard about red raspberry leaf tea and it’s benefits as a uterine tonic. It is said that when taken during pregnancy, particularly in the third trimester, it can strengthen the mother’s immune system, ease morning sickness and help circulation. It’s believed to also help strengthen uterine muscles and tone the pelvic floor in preparation for childbirth.

Now, I don’t know if any of that is true but I drank it in my first pregnancy and it served me well with a relatively ‘easy’ birth and no pelvic floor or prolapse issues so I’m doing it again. Mama Body Tea has a great range of pregnancy and nursing teas, or I’ve also used brands from a health food store as well.

Me Time

During my first pregnancy with Jesse I had the luxury of time and had regular massages and monthly visits to the chiropractor. While that hasn’t happened this time I still think it is really important to give yourself permission to take time out for yourself to relax and bond with baby.

I especially love prenatal yoga and listening to guided meditations or hypnobirthing audios (you can find them on Apple music). They are both beautiful ways to slow down and connect with the baby while learning techniques for encouraging a calm and positive birth experience.

A relaxing bath, going for a walk or just laying down and enjoying the feeling of baby move are great too. I also love Bowen Therapy and am looking forward to trying a float tank very soon. Sounds like the perfect way to ease the strain of a growing belly on tired, achy muscles.

All the food

After my pregnancy with Jesse I promised I would have a better diet the second time around. Not that I was super bad with Jesse but I did indulge pretty much my every whim towards the end. I think because food was such a turn off in the first 3 months that I was making up for it in the last!

Well, it would seem that I have broken my promise and chocolate has become a food group unto itself lately. But you know what, I don’t care. I’m still eating plenty of healthy stuff too and exercising. So bugger it! I will eat all the food and if that means chocolate on the daily then so be it.

So there you have it. A few things that help me enjoy pregnancy as much as possible and start to prepare for birth.

What are your pregnancy must-haves?? I’d love to hear what you couldn’t live without during pregnancy.

 

This Time Around

I just knew.

I couldn’t exactly put my finger on it, but I just had a feeling. So when the first couple of pregnancy tests came back negative I wasn’t bothered. A far cry from how I felt when I would get a negative test when trying the first time. I sensed that Kaine was feeling pretty confident this month too.

We had decided back in January that we wanted to get straight into trying for another baby. Jesse was 7 months old. It seemed a tad crazy but we had to be prepared that it might take a while again. Plus we knew that chances were slim straight away anyway because I was still breastfeeding and my cycle hadn’t yet returned.

Over the next few months we weaned and four cycles later I couldn’t shake the feeling that we had been successful. I took another test and a beautiful yet faint second pink line confirmed my suspicions. It only took four months… I swallowed hard at the realisation that I was now that woman that long term TTC’ers want to throat punch. I know all too well how that feels.

I couldn’t wait to surprise Kaine with the news, and I had a plan to do so the following day. So when he asked me if I had got my period yet, I lied. I could sense his disappointment which only fed my excitement to tell him.

Thankfully, it all went to plan and I surprised him with the news that Jesse was going to be a big brother.

this-time-around
One of many outtakes from our ‘Pregnancy Announcement Shoot’

Fast forward a bit over a week, I went to the doctor who confirmed the test result and I went for a dating scan. I left the scan feeling confident. There was a gestational sac, its not Ectopic, however, it is early days and there is not yet a foetal pole to measure. I’m told its normal for this early and to come back in about two weeks.

But the doubt starts to creep in. My mind races with questions. Is there no baby in there because there isn’t one? Suddenly I’m protective with the news. I was so excited to tell our immediate families but now, I’m not so sure. We keep it our little secret for a bit longer.

Fast forward a couple of months and the secret is out. All is going well, and now that I’m not feeling like crap all the time, the excitement is starting to kick back in.

This time around I think I’m both more excited, and more terrified. Excited because I know how wonderful having a baby and being a mum is, but terrified because I know how hard it is.

We could not be happier though. No doubt these next six months will fly by, but we will take joy in our time as a family of three while we wait for Baby Barton #2 to join us.

40 Weeks In / 40 Weeks Out

Our baby turning nine months old feels like quite a significant milestone. He has now been earth side for the same amount of time he spent growing in my belly.

He spent 40 weeks in and now 40 weeks out. Well actually, he was in for 38+6 but that doesn’t quite have the same ring to it.

During my pregnancy our anticipation grew as fast as he did. Our first baby after nearly two years of trying to conceive meant that we were equal parts ecstatic and freaked out.

We knew our lives would change but after nine years of  marriage we were ready for the next chapter. We spent countless hours talking about the kind of parents we wanted to be and speculating what our child might be like.

image4
Photo: Renee Trubai

Nine months later we are falling more in love with our little man every day. With golden hair like his Daddy and puffy cheeks like his Mama, he brings more joy to our lives than we ever expected. And with a heart-melting smile that he flashes so generously, we love how much happiness he brings to our family, friends and strangers too.

Over the 40 weeks he spent in, he grew from a tiny speck of cells into a little human. A tiny 2.7 kg and 48 cm. 10 little fingers, 10 little toes. Bright blue eyes and faint little blonde hairs on his head (he also had little blonde fury arms when he was born which was so cute!).

And over the past 40 weeks out he has grown into a happy, giggly bubba, 9.3kg and 77cm tall. He always gets comments about how tall he is and how his hair style matches Daddy’s.

JJB6-11
Photo: Renee Trubai

He is crawling everywhere, exploring everything and climbing up my leg every chance he gets. He LOVES animals and one glimpse of our cat or dog and his spirits are lifted as he starts babbling and smiling and kicking his legs with excitement.

In the nine months since becoming a mum I have learned a lot about myself, my husband and about life. I am learning to trust myself and my ability to know what is right for us, not just what the ‘parenting experts’ say is right.

As I sit here writing while Jesse mashes up a nectarine between his fingers beside me, I’m learning to be okay with mess. And even to see the fun side of it. I’m learning patience, servant-hood and sacrifice. That its okay to slow down, to play, to ask for help when help is needed.

I’ve learned just how much my husband worries. But I know it is because he loves us so much. The positive side of that is it keeps me calm (we can’t both lose our shit, at least not at the same time!).

I’ve learned the value of a full nights rest and will not take it for granted ever again.

I’ve learned that I will make mistakes as a parent. I will lose my cool, I will yell and cry sometimes. I will have to collect Jesse up off the floor because he’s fallen off the bed (whoops!) but it’s okay. A child needs to see their parents failing from time to time.

And I’m sure there will be many more lessons, many more mistakes.

But for now, happy nine months little one. I hope you’ve loved your 40 weeks out as much as we have.

xx

P2190133

 

God, The Universe And Taylor Swift

On Saturday night my bestie and I saw Taylor Swift in concert for the second time. With grins from ear to ear we fist pumped, squealed like 12 year old girls and sang along to every word, loving every minute. We may have brought up the age average significantly, and I’m pretty sure I was sitting next to a ‘chaperone Dad’, but we had an amazing time. 

IMG_0700

There was a strange feeling about the night though. I put it down to this… Two years ago almost to the day we were standing in that same stadium seeing Taylor for the first time. I was so excited to be seeing her, but at the same time I had a little cloud over my head. It had been following me around for a while. At that time two years ago, we had been trying to have a baby for nearly 12 months.

At the same time, we were also planning a trip to Europe with said bestie and her now husband. We had agreed to give ourselves until the end of the year to conceive; if we weren’t pregnant, we’d book the trip. We were incredibly excited about the possibility of going to Europe for the first time and the adventures we would have there, but we also desperately wanted a baby as well.

Fast forward two years and the woman who stood in the stadium this time is now a mother of a beautiful 6 month old baby boy. Plus, we did get to go on that Euro trip. And life could not be better.

IMG_0713

It may not have all happened according to my plan but this way was so much better.

Call it God, the universe, whatever; sometimes we just have to trust that it’s plan will unfold with the perfect timing.

 

Photo Friday: Documenting A Love Story

The first time we worked with our photographer (and great friend) Renee Trubai was last year when she asked us to be a part of her project ‘A Love Manifesto’. The project is all about documenting love in all its forms through photographs and conversations. We immediately fell in love with the idea and couldn’t wait to be apart of it.

We chose a location that was very special to us, the beach where our wedding photos were taken. As we shared stories with Renee about our relationship and vision of the future, and the kind of parents we dreamed of being someday. I distinctly remember telling her that if we were not able to have children we would be OK because we had each other. What we didn’t say is that we had been trying for a baby for quite some time.

2689-006

Deep beneath those words we spoke to Renee was actually a lot of heartache, frustration and disappointment. And by that stage I had actually begun coming to terms with the notion that it may not happen for us.

Little did we know that there were actually three of us in those photographs. We were in the very early days of pregnancy.

So needless to say, these pictures are incredibly special to us.

2693-034

2695-023

2693-005

2695-032