This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #TenaTips #CollectiveBias
Pregnancy is filled with many amazing moments .
Feeling your baby kick. That connection to a little human you've never seen. The "glow". The longer hair and nails. The attention and care for your well being from pretty much any and everyone.
But, if you've been there, you know it's not always paradise in pregnant town. There's the flip side, the side that is still totally worth it, but the side that makes the nine months feel a little more like a few years. Or is that just me? No?
That side, ladies, is what I'm touching on today and how it pertains to how we can still be functioning, beautiful, fit creatures on this roller coaster of an emotional, nauseated, tired, moody, incontinent journey to motherhood.
It was important to me to maintain some resemblance of my Paleo diet and fitness regime through my pregnancy.
In the first trimester it was still easy to fit into my cute, tiny yoga attire and due to the fact my morning sickness was so bad I didn't worry about gaining weight. We were more worried I would lose to much. I was also put on a no-workout restriction due to being a high risk first trimester - so skipping ahead to...
The second trimester. This is called the pregnancy honeymoon phase for a reason. My energy soared, my morning sickness tapered off around four months and there were days when aside from my burgeoning bump, I sometimes forgot I was pregnant. This was when prenatal yoga was still a breeze and walking and hiking was still something I tried to do on a regular basis. Even though doing so left me a little winded and proved that my reality was that I was, in fact, growing another human being and needed to start listening to my body and its new, foreign limitations.
Now, the third trimester, where I am currently residing with puffy feet, crazy cravings and all, brings about the greatest challenges for going about your day It's where your body really starts to ramp up to labor day. The baby grows at lightning speeds, your muscles stretch to their max and your bodily functions change up a bit. And ladies, if we are being honest that can mean gas issues, incontinence when your gleefully getting in a light jog or sinus pressure like you reside in a ragweed meadow.
Again, totally worth it to cuddle that little human that will be here before you know it. But still, a challenge.
To help you be prepared, I have put together my workout arsenal, along with my favorite Tena products, to help you feel as confident and ready to take on whatever the day brings.
Water, water & more water - Carrying another human, it's only natural for your nutritional needs to increase and water is no exception, it's actually number one. Even though somedays tacos can feel like number one. Mmm, tacos. For your water intake, aim for 1-2 glasses more a day than normal, 3-4 additional on days you work out.
Non-Restrictive Attire - You want to be comfortable and able to move freely. Maternity yoga pants, a long, fitted maternity shirt and a supportive bra is my personal go-to. And comfortable shoes!! Having support for your legs and feet is crucial to help balance the extra weight you are carrying.
Light Weights - Pregnancy isn't a time for heavy lifting, but it is important to keep muscles toned. I carry a small pair of 2 or 3 lb. weights to curl when I'm walking or at the gym doing a stretch session by the mirrors.
An Extra Hand Towel - Living in Arizona, where it is currently 120 degrees today in my third trimester, no joke, I sweat. A lot. I actually hardly ever broke a sweat, even during hard workouts pre-baby, so this is very new and very unpleasant to me. So I throw an extra hand towel in my bag for really hot days or harder workouts.
TENA Overnights or Pads - Many women deal with bladder control issues in the last trimester of pregnancy (and many times, beyond) Ah, the joys of motherhood. Depending on your level of need, whether it be light or heavy when exerting yourself through excercise, TENA makes a whole line of products to match your personal needs. TENA allows us women to feel confident and supports us so that we don't have to forgo a workout or any other life activity where a leak may happen.
Healthy snacks - This one isn't just for the gym. Carrying healthy snacks wherever you go can keep your blood sugars even and help you avoid unhealthy splurges. Protein bars, protein balls, crisp veggies, apple slices or a hearty trail mix is my go to in both my gym bag and purse.
What have been the greatest tools in your Third Trimester Pregnancy workout bag? Share in the comments below!
I can't believe I am currently 6 months pregnant!!
I am beaming with joy from God's provision, blessings + grace. He is so good and I pray everyday and thank Him everyday for our little miracle. After three years of prayers, tears, doctors, tests, hormones, diets, supplements, patience (that wasn't always easy) and waiting, we celebrate today. Boy oh boy, do we celebrate today.
Some friends of our renewed their vows in a beautiful ceremony at our church this past weekend, on a hill beneath the cross. Mr. Charming and I arrived to the location a little early, as he was doing their photography, and he decided to snap some impromptu maternity photos that I wanted to share in celebration of our six month mark on this journey.
How far along? 24 weeks
Total Weight Gain/Loss: Put ON weight this time. About 10-15 lbs over pre-pregnancy weight.
Clothing Options? Maternity pants and shorts all the way. And Maxi Dresses are my new best friend.
Pregnancy Symptoms? Braxton Hicks contractions have introduced themselves to me, mainly when I'm doing dishes or cleaning a lot. My boobs are out of control (sorry, its the truth, haha) and my old bras are no longer part of the equation, it's already to nursing bras. Waking up often to pee.
Sleep: Sleeping great is in the past. My bump now has me only sleeping on my side which is causing hip and shoulder pain. Thank God for a Chiropractor and Massage Therapist on my team.
Best Moment of Month SIX: I did my first and second maternity shoots this month with Mr. Charming. Super blessed to have a husband who is a photographer. He made me feel so beautiful and I'm happy to have photos of my bump I can look back on and show baby.
Biggest Fear of Month SIX We had a wedding to attend where we had to hike a good amount to reach the ceremony and I had some pretty severe cramping that scared me a lot. After sitting for a while and drinking a ton of water it went away, but it was the first time I thought I may need to get checked out. Not so fun.
Movement: Tons of kicking!!!! Sometimes I sit and just connect to feeling the baby move. SO wonderful.
Food cravings: Savory. Like Paleo burgers and fries. And ice cream since it's been getting really hot. I'm also baking a lot. Muffins, cupcakes. All about the gluten-free baking and breakfasts right now.
Belly Button: It's popped! I officially have an outtie.
Mood: Happy and energetic! Getting SO much work and housework done. This mustbe the window they say to cherish! haha
Looking Forward To: Celebrating my FIRST Mother's Day next month!
In other news... I accepted a second editorial position to get in a lot of work before baby comes. BASIC and PALEO LIVING are my magazine homes and I am also starting corporate seminars for Nosh and Nurture Nutrition.
One of my favorite parts of being in my second trimester is the planning + shopping. Which shouldn't be a surprise to me, or anyone that knows me, being a slightly OCD clean freak from way back and avid believer in retail therapy as a valid form of expression.
At 5 months pregnant, I have to applaud my restraint at not personally buying any cutesy, tiny, baby things. In the first trimester I was a mix of being too scared and too sick to go shopping for anything, and then big purchases and work took over once I hit my second.
Until this past weekend. Mr. Charming and I met up with my sister to show her some of our favorite picks at Babies R' Us, and while there, I decided to choose our "Coming Home" outfits for baby. Squeeeeeeee.
We chose a sweet outfit for both a boy + a girl, if I haven't mentioned on the blog, we are not finding out the sex until delivery. Life is short on big, wonderful surprises such as this and it was a choice Mr. Charming and I made together early on. Bringing these little outfits home are just one of the wonderful things that make this surreal experience + miracle more real every day.
And how sweet is that knitted little pink gown for if she is a she? I loved it's vintage look and breathability since we are expecting a summer baby.
For the boy, Mr. Charming has had a thing for the adorable suit-inspired pieces, so we chose a dressed up soft blue sleeper. A little more coverage and warmer than the girls outfit, but we are just a few moments from the hospital and, if it's a boy, could change him into something cooler once we arrived home.
Today is our 5 month appointment where we get to see, hear + check up on our little babe. Excited doesn't even begin to describe how I felt waking up this morning.
It's like Christmas, rolled into a Disney day, rolled into your wedding morning. Praying for a healthy little one who will dance for me the way he or she has been dancing in my belly all morning.
What did your little one wear home from the hospital? And what was your favorite part of your 5 month ultrasound?
It's sometimes so very surreal to me that I am 20 weeks pregnant. Halfway through my pregnancy. And just over four months away from meeting our little boy or girl. Somedays I wake up and don't feel pregnant right away, until I feel a little jab, kick or flutter and smile, remembering this amazing blessing God gave to us. And I breathe it in and enjoy every second. It truly came in His timing.
After three years of trying and appointments and prayers and hormones and lifestyle changes and dietary changes, we waited. We prayed. We gave up sometimes. We kept trying. Kept praying. And it was His miracle, nothing explained as to why or why not, because that is for Him to know. What I do know, is that we are to celebrate this little life. Every blessed moment that he or she grows within me. Every little jab. Every little glorious kick. Every sweet flutter.
My bump is also ever growing, which makes it feel more real with each passing day. I no longer fit any of my pants and have graduated to a full wardrobe of awesome banded maternity pants and bras that are far from "Victoria Secret" pretty. But I'm now super comfortable and growing a person, so. Thankfully they now make stylish options and I can still rock ripped jeans, Hollister-style shorts and fashionable yoga pants.
To celebrate our halfway point to Baby P, on Friday night, Mr. Charming and I went to a new fair in town. It was close to home and so much fun! I couldn't ride any of the rides of course, but we got to meet a Capuchin Monkey, [Marcel! My fellow Friends fans will get that] we checked out all the games & Mr. Charming got his favorite Piggly Fries, because sometimes, when you're at the fair you indulge in greasy treats. I, on the other hand, tucked into a bowl of cereal with gluten-free jelly toast when we got home. Because four meals a day now. Luckily they are super clean and nutritious 9o% of the time. Score 1 for mostly #PaleoLife.
I adore weekends and this weekend is a busy one for us. We have our family Easter picnic today so I'm brainstorming what to whip up and share. This morning I made Mr .Charming and I Paleo Banana Bread muffins that were amazing. No refined sugar with an almond flour base, SO good. For the picnic, I'm thinking my Paleo 7 Layer Dip or some Raw Fudge Brownies. I'm undecided today and hope I choose before it's time to be at the park, haha. Taking in a lazy morning with muffins & puppies is just so inviting after a long week of work on the magazine, blog and seminar research.
I hope you all have a blessed & beautiful weekend! I'm going to continue to strive to celebrate each of these pre-baby moments in their own special way.
If you're a mama, what moments stick out for you that made it oh so real? Or how did you celebrate your pregnancy milestones?
How far along? 20 Weeks
Total Weight Gain/Loss: Still not much change from last month, but doctor says with my Paleo diet and still being in my second trimester she isn't worried.
Clothing Options? Yoga pants are my life for the most part. Can only wear my regular jeans or shorts unbuttoned. Having to get longer shirts.
Pregnancy Symptoms? Feeling pretty good. Still tired on and off. But pregnancy hormones have been AMAZING for my mood and anxiety. I feel better emotionally than I ever have before.
Best Moment of Month FIVE: Seeing my bump pop! And starting to shop for baby!
Biggest Fear of Month FIVE: Mr. Charming had to go to Chicago for a few days and being a big house, with the dogs, pregnant, while he's miles and miles away wasn't my favorite. But he brought back an ADORABLE "Foodie In Training" sleeper from the Baby Gap in Chicago, so that made me smile.
Movement: Little flips and rolls. Nothing too much yet.
Food cravings: Smoothies!
Aversions: Meat sometimes still and onions.
Belly Button: Flat. haha. I think it's going to become an outtie soon. Not sure how I feel about it.
Looking Forward To: Really starting to shop and plan the nursery!
In other news... We got an amazing book, from Pea to Pumpkin, where we are journaling our journey together as mom and dad to remember all the moments and write special notes to baby!
An honored thank you to Pampers and Walmart for sponsoring this #MothersPromise. post. I received promotional materials and compensation for my post, however all thoughts and opinions are uniquely my own.
Dear little one,
Today I stood in awe, watching your daddy lovingly build you your cradle. The first place you'll lay your delicate, sweet head when we are blessed to bring you home. That's one thing magnificent about him, his talent for making beautiful things out of nothing. He built the altar for our wedding, he built our dining room table that has been blessed with many meals, he built an epic home theatre that we can't wait to snuggle you in and now, now he stands before me, covered in sawdust, a smile on his face, as he builds your cradle.
It got me thinking about the things we plan to do for you, the things we hope to do for you, and the things we dream for you. It got me thinking about promises. And more specifically, my promise, to you, my future son or daughter. A mothers promise, I believe, holds so much when it comes to the intentions she sets forth for the type of mother she will become, and I want to you know I pray the very best for you. I have since before you even chose me.
My promise to you, is simply this, I promise, with the best of my ability, to give you the best when it comes to nutrition and how I care for you inside and out. If my journey to better health and way of life for your dad and I has taught me anything, it's that I knew when my little came along, I would start them out with a foundation that was as pure and natural as possible.
This starts with right where we began. Making your space a beautiful and natural place for you to begin your life. Organic cottons, natural woods and pieces created with pure love, I am grateful to be able to give you these things. And I will forever swoon over this gift your daddy gives to you, as I run my hand over the smooth sanded wood, and admire the way it rocks ever so gently.
Aside from your space, I also pray that I am able to breastfeed for as long as my body will allow me to give you the best nutrients God intended, little one. And when you're ready to join the world of food, (your dad and I are total foodies, so it'll be a fun journey), we promise to strive to provide the best nutrient rich foods to help you grow and thrive.
And last, but certainly not least, when it comes to caring for your new baby skin, only the best in lotions, washes and diapers will do. After extensive research and many nights at many stores, Walmart's Pampers Premiums are top tier. I trust them to take care of your brand new little baby bum with their 5 Star hypoallergenic skin care. The wetness indicator and unique absorb away liner will come in handy for mommy too during those moonlit nightly changings.
So, little one. I pray you rest easy and know that my #MothersPromise will be first and foremost in my mind from now until you arrive, and throughout your lifetime. And if I should forget the importance of this promise, I only need to look down at the cradle to remember these moments and our sweet, sweet beginning.
For mine & Mr. Charming's list on natural crafts that YOU can make for your nursery click here.
Available in a wide range of sizes, Pampers Premiums are available at Walmart and Walmart.com.
One of the many things I love about my husband is that he is a builder. Having gone to school to be an architect before switching to dental, he learned many valuable tools of the trade that have allowed him to make our lives and home more beautiful.
Having built our wedding alter and the dining table for our home, he surprised me this past week after building our soon to be son or daughter a cradle.
Major swoon moment. You can see the cradle here along with my #MothersPromise, diaper choicie & first letter to our future babe.
It was in this moment I thought about the natural touches one could add to make their nursery space more authentic and I have put together a little list of ideas & crafts that are easy to do.
|| WOODEN BLOCKS ||
There is just something about wooden blocks that I adore. Something so simplistic and educational about their innocent little ABCs and 123s that adorn them. These are simple to make and take minimal supplies.
1.) Head to your nearest craft store and purchase 2" square blocks or your nearest hardware store and get a 2" wooden beam to cut into blocks.
2.) Make sure they are sanded well, as to prevent any little hands from getting scraped or splintered.
3.) Get crafty! You can use wood glue to adhere small wooden letters or numbers from a craft store, or you can stencil or paint them on.
4.) You can leave them natural wood for a more rustic feel, or get creative and colorful with a paint palette of your choice.
5.) Make sure all surfaces of paint and glue are completely dry before allowing children to use.
|| CHEVRON NURSERY LETTERS ||
One of my favorite items for a nursery wall is the monogram. And chevron is still trending. Mr. Charming and I are unable to incorporate this as of yet, since we don't know if we are bringing home a boy or girl, but when we do, trust I will be making one of these.
1.) Go to your local craft store and pick up a large wooden letter that is the first letter in your babies name.
2.) Make sure to purchase two wood-based paint colors that compliment your nursery palette, wood glue, craft tape and a roll of burlap ribbon.
3.) Once home, tape off a chevron pattern in the desired thickness and using one of your paint colors, fill in the first color. Once dry, repeat, this time painting the opposite of the chevron pattern.
4.) Once dry, tie a decorative burlap bow and adhere to the corner for a rustic & natural finishing touch.
|| MAKE OLD NEW AGAIN ||
If you're feeling adventurous you convert an old piece of furniture into something new for your baby or toddler. Some ideas include:
1.) Turn a thin nightstand into a wooden "refridgerator" converting the drawers into a "freezer" and "fridge" door.
2.) Turn a small desk or entertainment cabinet into a play kitchen. There are many tutorials online.
3.) Repurpose old wooden frames into chalkboards with a little chalkboard paint.
|| THE BIG BOY/GIRL STOOL ||
My neice adores helping in the kitchen, but little arms and little legs can get frustrating for little ones. revive an old wooden stool with a new finish or stain and paint. Paint their name or a fun nursery rhyme character. Or better yet, let them join in on the fun and make their own abstract art. They'll get to be creative and be mom's tall helper next time you're in the kitchen.
|| FURNITURE ||
If you're feeling adventurous like we were, or if you have a handy hubby too, below is a list of ideas for one-of-a-kind touches you can make on your own nursery.
Have you made any toys, crafts or special furniture pieces for your little one? I'd LOVE to hear your ideas. Share them in the comment below. Also, if you have any questions about our cradle or any of the projects, feel free to ask away!
Last night Mr. Charming & I went to start our registry.
Insert all the girlish, happy, blissed-out squeals here. We decided to do it earlier than later, because we are already to starting to make some of our own, larger purchases, and we wanted the amazing rewards from Babies R' Us that go along with it. (No, this is not a sponsored post. I just think their registry program is that awesome.)
Along with this post just being a super happy dance on paper, er screen, I also recommend my suggestions for where I think organic is best.
In almost two hours, we only made it through about a quarter of the store. Most of our time was spent choosing what we believe is the best stroller and car seat for us. I let Mr. Charming take the reigns on this, since I chose the crib. We found a perfect match for both of us and baby. It's sleek, streamline, lightweight for little ol' Mandi, comfortable, high safety ratings and converts to last until baby is 4 years old! Win. Win. Win.
And can I just say, seeing your husband testing out your first child's stroller? Priceless, endorphin surging, swoon moment of a lifetime. Seriously almost cried. Thank you Jesus for these moments.
It's an overwhelming selection of EVERYTHING when you go to register, and when ours is complete, I'll post what I believe we needed vs. what I felt we didn't. Doug's five sisters and my three sisters have had plenty of littles over the years, so we've got to learn a lot about need vs. want when it comes to infant gear.
Although, the wiper and bottle warmer were pretty cool. I mean, would you want a cold, wet rag on your behind in the middle of the night? Doesn't sound too pleasant. I try to put myself in their booties when weighing what's necessary.
Right now I'm researching some organic brands offered at Babies R' Us to see which we are going to go with. Burts Bees vs. Honest vs. BabyGanics Vs. Earths Best. I also like the attributes of Pampers Premium to protect my little baby's bum So far, Burt's Bees has the best lavender lotion, as I miss the old J&J lavender night lotion of the past. BabyGanics smelled too earthy for us and Earths Best seems to have a good selection. New waters to explore, and so many options. But happy there are so many organic options. With Johnson and Johnson and other popular baby companies coming under fire for so many harmful chemicals, it's good to know we can opt for better options for our developing little one.
The items below are where we are going organic or chemical-free in the nursery and our home, once completed I'll publish my faves, once I've tried them out.
All Bath & Diaper Products
Our Crib Mattress
Mittens and other items that touch the face
Toys (Eco Friendly and Chemical Free)
All Cleaners For Home & Baby Clothes
I'd love to hear your feedback on your favorite organic baby brands! Leave it in the comments below!
How far along? 16 Weeks
Total weight gain/loss: Still under pre-pregnancy weight. Even with my little bump.
Clothing Options? Mostly fitting my regular clothes, had to get some maternity shorts!
Pregnancy Symptoms? Still nauseated on and off, but not all day anymore!!
Sleep: Sleeping good. Starting to have to pee more.
Best moment of month FOUR: Traveling to California and getting to visit family and shoot a music video with my record label.
Biggest Fear of Month FOUR: Pretty blissed out right now. Second trimester baby!
Movement: Felt little butterfly bubbles and little flicks!!
Food cravings: Really bad food :( Eating healthy but craving things I havn't eaten in YEARS. Like quesadillas. Sonic Tater Tots (I know, SO BAD) and grilled cheese. Vegan Mac N' Cheese is having to do.
Aversions: Meat sometimes.
Belly Button in or out? In
Mood:: So happy <3
Looking forward to: Seeing my little bump grow!
In other news... I started to learn about what pregnancy can do to your body. After shooting a music video and attending a party to launch the magazine I was exhausted for DAYS. Mr. Charming also had a day to ourselves so we went to some fun places around L.A. - including the Botanical Gardens - and walking up hill was NO JOKE with my lessening lung capacity and the weight baby is starting to put on my legs.