Thursday, October 29, 2009

Bump Watch: 27 Weeks

Check it out -- a bump watch post that's going up mid-week! Yay! As noted last week, our bump photos are being taken in front of our crib from here on out. We really love the crib and bedding. :)

David really made me laugh as he was taking this photo, so there's a slight change in facial expression for those of you (ahem, Steve) who wanted a flip book of these photos complete with different emotions leading up to the big day... :)

I think my belly might look a little smaller this week than last? That's probably more a function of the angle and my posture... Please still tell me that I look huge? :) Though it seems that the women in my office have come up with better ways of saying that I'm "tiny" -- the director of associate development for the firm (the woman in charge of mentoring programs, general training, and basically just keeping all of us happy) was in our office this week, and told me that I'm the most graceful pregnant woman she'd ever seen. And "graceful" is so much better a term than "small" or "tiny," at least in my eyes... Made me happy, so I guess she's doing her job right!

And here's what has to say about this week --
This week, your baby weighs almost 2 pounds (like a head of cauliflower) and is about 14-1/2 inches long with his legs extended. He's sleeping and waking at regular intervals, opening and closing his eyes, and perhaps even sucking his fingers. With more brain tissue developing, your baby's brain is very active now. While his lungs are still immature, they would be capable of functioning — with a lot of medical help — if he were born now. Chalk up any tiny rhythmic movements you may be feeling to a case of baby hiccups, which may be common from now on. Each episode usually lasts only a few moments, and they don't bother him, so just relax and enjoy the tickle.
I can't believe he's already opening and closing his eyes! I can believe he's hiccuping -- I've definitely been feeling the rhythmic thumping on a fairly regular basis... And his kicks and punches have been getting so much stronger lately! Eggi's really announcing his presence these days. :)

Twenty-seven weeks pregnant -- we're in the beginning of the third trimester now! More than two-thirds of the way through! How exciting, and terrifying, all at once... Please continue to pray with us that our little KeddieCub will grow strong and healthy, and that we'll be as ready as possible for this massive life change!

The cough that just won't go away

With David working in campus ministry, we're generally pretty used to picking up the occasional bug -- college campuses are notorious incubators for disease, and Princeton is certainly no exception. The way it usually works is that David gets something from one of his students, I make sure he gets plenty of Dayquil/Nyquil and fluids and rest, it clears out of his system, I come down with whatever he had, I dose myself up right, I get better, and we move on.

But this time around, I'm pregnant. And while there are some over-the-counter cold medications that some organizations have deemed safe for pregnancy, none of them are without their risks. Robitussen, for instance, is a Class C drug.

I do know that even the most benign over-the-counter meds carry risks. (Believe me, as a products liability defense attorney, I know.) But I've really been trying to limit the amount of medications I take during this pregnancy, just to err on the side of being over-cautious, so taking my normal cold meds will be my absolute last resort. And I'm not quite there yet -- I've been coughing for days, and I've worked from home most of this week, but I'm not too miserable yet...

So do any of you out there have any sure-fire, pregnancy-safe methods for dealing with a cough? I've been chugging orange juice and decaf tea, and sucking on peppermints -- any other useful tips?

Comments and sympathy would be much appreciated. :)

Monday, October 26, 2009

Musings on baby nicknames

Judging from the pregnancy websites and online forums I've been perusing the last few months, it looks like most parents-to-be have some cute nickname by which they refer to their little ones. Most common are things like Peanut or Sweetpea, followed by one of the cute little produce analogies used earlier on in pregnancy (like Blueberry or Poppyseed).

I always figured I'd want to use one of these cutesy nicknames whenever I got pregnant. And it's true, I very much did -- but David wasn't so hot on Peanut or Sweetpea. So we tossed around a few ideas, but didn't really land on anything we loved at first. We knew we wanted something, though -- you can't just keep referring to your baby as "the baby," y'know? We definitely wanted something more personalized and endearing than that!

Of course, "KeddieCub" was coined by a dear friend as soon as we made the public pregnancy announcement -- many thanks to Emily for that sweet nickname. :) And we use KeddieCub as a sort of public "brand" image for our little son -- it's the title of the Facebook album with our sonograms and bump watch photos, and it's up at the top of this blog in our pregnancy countdown ticker. And it fits in very well with our family lore (click to read about how "Keddiebears" came to be).

But KeddieCub isn't actually the nickname that David and I use when we talk to our baby or refer to him in conversation with each other. (And yes, we do talk to our baby -- I'm sure he can totally hear and understand everything we say to him!)

In a stroke of inspiration one day last summer, we decided to go with the nickname "Eggi." It's our cutesy transliteration of the Korean word for "baby." and as one of our med student friends commented, it works as a reference to one of the stages of fetal development... :) And "Eggi" has really stuck -- so much so, in fact, that I fear we're likely to call our son Eggi for years and years to come... :)

When I feel kicks, I tell David to come quick and touch my belly, "because Eggi's trying to say hi!" When I complain about a particularly bad bout of heartburn, David turns to my belly and says, "Eggi, stop pushing your mama's organs up into her rib cage!" It's really cute, and really fun.

And we figure it's also a great way to honor one half of Eggi's ancestry. We'll use the in utero nickname "Wee Bairn" for our second baby to honor the Scottish half. :)

The nickname has become such a part of this pregnancy that I felt I had to chronicle it here... Apologies for the cutesiness! But hey, if you can't be cutesy about baby-related things, when can you be, right?

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Bump Watch: 26 Weeks

So much for my resolution to be more on top of these bump watch posts... Emily, you were absolutely right to call me out on my impending failure. Sorry about that! I was slammed this week at work with a couple pretrial deadlines, and my parents were in town for 24 hours this weekend, which led to a lot of last-minute cleaning and prep work... But hey, part of the prep work was starting to put together the nursery, so there are crib pictures in this post!

We've been running out of white wall space in our apartment, so starting with this week's bump picture, we'll be posing me in front of the baby's crib. :)

This week's photo was taken a little later in the week than usual (again, see above-referenced being slammed this week), so that may explain a little why my belly looks like it's grown more than in other weeks... But I think KeddieCub also had a bit of a growth spurt this week!

And here's the weekly blurb from --
The network of nerves in your baby's ears is better developed and more sensitive than before. He may now be able to hear both your voice and your partner's as you chat with each other. He's inhaling and exhaling small amounts of amniotic fluid, which is essential for the development of his lungs. These so-called breathing movements are also good practice for when he's born and takes that first gulp of air. And he's continuing to put on baby fat. He now weighs about a pound and two-thirds and measures 14 inches (an English hothouse cucumber) from head to heel.
And for those of you who just scrolled down to see the promised pictures... :)

Our beautiful crib and bedding set!

The diaper stacker and the interior of the crib (with our old dressers as placeholders
for the nursery furniture we'll be getting sometime between now and January)

Daybed on the other side of the room, which pulls out to create a king bed
(this is, after all, the "nursery-slash-guestroom")

The room is starting to come together! How exciting! We'll continue to document the nursery prep process and keep you all posted!

Thursday, October 22, 2009

YAC is back!

Now that the summer is over, people are back in town, and the church ministry year has started, Young Adult Connections is back up and running!

We had a kickoff brunch a couple Sundays ago, at the home of Tim and Lori Bentch -- tons of good food, some structured time of discussing and planning for the year, and a lot of great time just hanging out with fun people. :)

Carrie helping to prep desserts

Mary, Thomas, Tim and David -- part of the indoor half of the group

And the other half of the group eating outside

Tim, Dave and Phil

Lovely ladies --Lis, Carrie, Milla and Christina

And then the following Sunday (last week), Phil and Dave hosted a YAC brunch of their own after church. The invitation said that soup would be served, and that we could bring side dishes or desserts if we wanted to contribute.

And wow, was soup ever served.

I unfortunately didn't get any pictures of this event, but there were probably about 20 people there, and four different kinds of amazing homemade soup -- sweet potato, chicken and white bean, and other scrumptious deliciousness. Dave is a gourmet, and his roommate Phil is certainly no slouch in the kitchen... I feel like I say this all the time, and it's becoming a bit of a cliche, but really, good times were had by all. :)

And finally, this coming Saturday, David and I are hosting a YAC Halloween party. We'll be sure to take tons of pictures!

It's just so wonderful to see this ministry flourishing and growing. Every single time we throw an event, we get a number of newcomers who express interest in joining a small group and being included on the YAC email list. (We've started a whole new small group for young professionals in the area, and we're planning to start another grad student group this fall.) And it's also really exciting to see others stepping up and planning/hosting events -- with the Halloween party, it'll be three YAC events in four weeks, only one of which David and I had primarily responsibility for. There has always been a felt need in this demographic for community -- and we're so thankful to have so many great people coming alongside us to help provide that community!

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Bump Watch: 25 Weeks

My resolution for next week: get the bump watch post up sometime before Sunday evening! Some historian and chronicler I am, if I can't write a post about a particular week in pregnancy development until the evening of the very last day of the week... And how can I live with deceiving all of you into thinking that our baby is the size of a rutabaga right now, when I know I'll be getting the 26 week update tomorrow morning, telling us that he's actually about the size of an English hothouse cucumber?

(By the way, am I the only one for whom these particular vegetables don't really provide any frame of reference? How big is a rutabaga, anyways? Hmm, must learn more about vegetables before the baby is born -- or at least, before he's ready to start eating solid foods, and I'm ready to start nagging him to eat his veggies...)

All of that aside -- here's the 25 week bump watch picture!

We've been faithfully taking these photos on Wednesday nights, after small group -- it's a fun part of our pregnancy routine these days. :)

And here's what has to say about our KeddieCub this week:
Head to heels, your baby now measures about 13 1/2 inches. His weight — a pound and a half — isn't much more than an average rutabaga, but he's beginning to exchange his long, lean look for some baby fat. As he does, his wrinkled skin will begin to smooth out and he'll start to look more and more like a newborn. He's also growing more hair — and if you could see it, you'd now be able to discern its color and texture.
I'm pretty sure that our son's hair will be straight and dark brown... But I guess we'll see when he's born -- in just over three months!!

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Bump Watch: 24 Weeks

Coming in just under the wire, before we hit 25 weeks tomorrow -- it's the 24 week bump watch picture!

I was in another one of my lovely, comfy maternity shirts for this one. It's a bit more billowy than my other shirts, so it almost looks like the bump is a bit smaller than it was last week, but David assures me that I'm growing ever larger by the day -- which, under these circumstances, is a really sweet thing for him to say. :)

And our little boy is continuing to grow, too! Here is this week's blurb from --
Your baby's growing steadily, having gained about 4 ounces since last week. That puts him at just over a pound. Since he's almost a foot long (picture an ear of corn), he cuts a pretty lean figure at this point, but his body is filling out proportionally and he'll soon start to plump up. His brain is also growing quickly now, and his taste buds are continuing to develop. His lungs are developing "branches" of the respiratory "tree" as well as cells that produce surfactant, a substance that will help his air sacs inflate once he hits the outside world. His skin is still thin and translucent, but that will start to change soon.
Aww, he's an ear of corn this week! (Which, incidentally, has been one of my cravings for the last several weeks... I love me some corn on the cob...)

And speaking of lung development, the biggest milestone we passed this week was viability! At 24 weeks, the rate of viability outside the womb goes up to 30-50%, so most hospitals will take extraordinary measures to try to save the life of a baby born this early. Before 24 weeks, survival rates are generally too low for even the best NICU units to be able to do much. So it's a cautiously exciting point to hit in this pregnancy -- we definitely, definitely don't want the baby to be born just yet, but it's exciting to have hit technical viability!

Fun milestone for this week -- my parents bought us our crib, which arrived this weekend!! So we're hoping to clear out the nursery/guest bedroom this week (it's currently full of empty boxes and storage items from the move) and start setting up the baby furniture this week! Pictures will be sure to come. :)

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

25th Anniversary Celebrations at Grace Pres

[This post has been back-dated, because we really meant to get this one up ages ago...]

On Saturday, October 3, we took a quick day trip out to State College, PA, to celebrate the 25th anniversary of the official founding of Grace Presbyterian Church, David's old home church. (We wanted to stay for the whole weekend of events and celebrations, but David had to be back in Princeton to lead an apologetics seminar on Sunday, so we made it a day trip -- lots of driving for one day, but totally worth it!)

We made it to State College just in time to catch the tail end of the picnic -- and in time to catch up with old friends. And family! David's parents had come in from Indianapolis, so we got to see them in person for the first time we'd announced our pregnancy! I unfortunately didn't get any photos of the picnic, or of the reaction of the grandparents-to-be to my slowly developing baby bump, but here's a picture of us, stolen from David's mom's facebook album of the event -- which she helpfully captioned "David & Christina Keddie and future grandson." :)

In the evening, there was a catered dinner with great times of fellowship and reconnecting with Grace Pres members, old and new. All three of the men who had pastored the church in its 25 years were there, and shared reminiscences of the work God had done (and is continuing to do) through this branch of the body. And there was an open time of sharing at the end, where people spoke of the hospitality that had drawn them into real community with fellow believers, and the strong teaching and preaching of the Word, and just generally of their thankfulness for God's faithfulness to this church over the years... It was such an encouragement to all of us to hear these testimonies!

David Hanson, Gordon Keddie, and Duncan Lowe --
the current and past pastors of Grace Pres

Some of those giving testimonies -- Kathy Adams, Jean Sherman, and Willem Coetzee

As always, we had a wonderful time in State College -- we just wish we could have stayed longer!

May the Lord continue to bless the work at Grace Presbyterian!

For the complete set of photos, check out this SmugMug gallery.

Friday, October 2, 2009

Bump Watch: 23 Weeks

Sometimes, I look at my profile in the mirror and am not sure how much I'm changing week to week. Then I look through these "bump watch" posts... I'm really glad we decided to start documenting the belly growth! I get so many comments from well-meaning women at work telling me I'm "so tiny" for being 5 months pregnant -- which is great, and I'm sure they mean to give me hope that I'll lose the baby weight quickly post-pregnancy, or something like that, but seriously, I just want to be told I look huge. :)

So anyways, here's the latest bump watch photo -- Christina at 23 weeks, 3 days!

And here's what had to say about our little guy's development this week:
Turn on the radio and sway to the music. With his sense of movement well developed by now, your baby can feel you dance. And now that he's more than 11 inches long and weighs just over a pound (about as much as a large mango), you may be able to see him squirm underneath your clothes. Blood vessels in his lungs are developing to prepare for breathing, and the sounds that your baby's increasingly keen ears pick up are preparing him for entry into the outside world. Loud noises that become familiar now — such as your dog barking or the roar of the vacuum cleaner — probably won't faze him when he hears them outside the womb.
And it's TRUE -- I did in fact see baby movement this week! I was sitting at my desk at work, drinking some ice-cold water (trying to get my 64-80 oz. of water per day). The baby tends to be more active after I drink cold water -- I think maybe he's responding to the feeling of cold water in my stomach? So he started kicking up a storm -- and with one particularly strong kick, I actually saw the top of my belly move! I immediately called David, and we marveled at our son's growing strength -- he's totally going to be a soccer star. :)

In other news, I had my monthly OB appointment yesterday afternoon. We got to meet another doctor in the practice, which is great, since any one of them might be the OB actually delivering our baby -- it all depends on when I go into labor and who's on call that day. I apparently am a textbook pregnant patient -- my weight gain is on track (finally up a net 10 pounds!), the baby's heartbeat is strong, my tests have all come back within normal limits, and my uterus is measuring just as it should be. We're so thankful for this "boring" pregnancy!

Oh, and we finally fixed our scanner, so I updated our 20-week ultrasound post with sonograms! [Here's a fun grammar/diction factoid that I didn't know before I was pregnant -- the "ultrasound" is the actual procedure using high-frequency sound waves to scan internal organs; the "sonogram" is the picture that results from the ultrasound procedure. The terms are colloquially used interchangeably, but I like precision in my word usage... So now you know!]

[And while we're talking pregnancy-related grammar/diction and precise word definitions... "Nauseous" technically means nausea-inducing, while "nauseated" means feeling sick. For instance, "I am nauseated because that smell is nauseous." I know this is totally a losing battle -- even dictionaries have started giving "affected with nausea" as the primary definition of "nauseous" -- so I've generally stopped "correcting" people, but I still firmly stick with the traditional definitions of these words. And thought I'd use this blog as a platform for raising "nauseous"/"nauseated" awareness. :)]

OK, OK, I'm done, I promise. Thanks for humoring this pregnant lady and her weird word usage hangups!

Our son: future soccer star and grammatical pedant... :)