Seeing my way through Pregnancy

Vision Changes during pregnancy…



Although I have a mild astigmatism for which I wear glasses when I feel the need to I’ve never suffered from major vision problems or had bad eyesight. I wear my glasses when at my computer, reading, watching TV or driving at night all when my eyes are tired from focusing all day.

I believe that my vision changed early on in my pregnancy probably late during the first trimester. What I didn’t realize was that I needed to go see my eye doctor because I was also dealing with changing up some medication that could have affected my blood pressure and, in turn, affected my vision.

To say the least, I waited too long and ended up anxiety ridden and in tears because I was so uncomfortable.

  • I couldn’t drive.
  • I couldn’t watch TV.
  • I couldn’t use my computer.
  • I couldn’t read a book.
  • I couldn’t even focus straight ahead.
  • I had to look down.

I made an appointment and saw my eye doctor. Sure enough, my prescription had changed. I decided to order glasses so that I can wear them when I feel like I really need to. Hopefully, my eyes will change back after the baby is born.

I never expected nor had I ever heard of some of the strange things about pregnancy. Everyone’s experience is so different.

Live and learn.

Pregnancy at 32 Weeks

Pregnancy at 32 Weeks

Are you feeling more uncomfortable?

Well, your baby is taking up more room in your uterus at this stage in your pregnancy, he is weighing in at 3 3/4 pounds and is now about 16.7 inches from head to heal.

Pregnancy at 32 Weeks

Your baby is about the size of a jicama!

Each week you can expect to gain about a pound and half of that weight will be going to your baby. He will gain about 1/3 of his weight during the next 7 weeks of pregnancy. He is getting ready to meet you each and every day.

You may experiencing changes now that your baby is taking up so much room and pushing up your diaphragm and crowding your stomach.

Some of these changes:

  • shortness of breath.
  • heartburn.
  • lower back pain.
  • shift in your center of gravity.
  • changes in your posture due to loosening of ligaments in your pelvis.
  • you may have difficulty getting up out of bed, out of a chair, pain when you walk, stand or sit for long periods of time.
  • lifting things may be difficult.

Comfort measures:

  • Sleep with pillows propped up.
  • Eat smaller meals more often.

“Sleeping is getting difficult. The only way I can get any rest is to lie with my back to my husband as he cradles my body. The support from him and a pillow between my legs is the best help.”
– Lora

Source: 32 weeks pregnant | BabyCenter

Decisions… decisions.

Who do you want with you while you are in labor?

Don’t feel pressured to have anybody with you but your significant other if that is what both of you decide on. Let well meaning grandparents and anyone else wait in the waiting area or at home as difficult as that might be. Make sure you tell everyone ahead of time your wishes and ask them to please respect them.

A private labor coach is a good idea. According to Baby Center there is research that shows women attended by labor assistants actually have shorter labors, fewer complications during labor and healthier newborns. A doula will be of great assistance to you and your husband. You will still have a nurse but she will be in and out of your room while you are in labor.

On the homefront:

Start lining up helpers for when you get home from the hospital after your baby’s birth.

You will be somewhat overwhelmed when you arrive home with your little bundle and someone there to help you with your needs and your baby’s needs will make you feel more under control.

Make a list of what you anticipate that you will need at home and delegate as much as you can ahead of time to well-meaning friends and relatives that offer to help.

You will be glad that you did this ahead of time.

Don’t forget that pedicure and manicure!

baby boy

Enjoy as much as you can these last few weeks of pregnancy.

Pregnancy at 31 Weeks

Pregnancy at 31 Weeks

Yes your baby is now moving a lot more and still putting on weight during this time of your pregnancy getting ready for his entrance into your world.

Pregnancy at 31 weeks

He now is probably over 16 inches long, weighing in at about 3 1/2 pounds and is about the size of a coconut. A growth spurt is about to begin. Fat is beginning to accumulate under his skin. He is able to move his head from side to side and you are probably feeling a lot of movement. His somersaults will keep you up at night…all of this activity is a sign of health.

Your pregnancy life:

  • Braxton Hicks contractions are now part of your life. Your uterine muscles are tightening and relaxing getting ready for labor. These are irregular contractions and only last about 30 seconds, they are infrequent and painless although they may put pressure on your bladder and make you feel like you have to pee.
  • Frequent contractions however could be a sign of pre-term labor and you should call your practitioner immediately if you have more than four contractions in an hour or any other signs of labor.
  • Signs of Labor:
  • Increase in vaginal discharge.
  • Change in vaginal discharge (watery, mucusy, or bloody, pink or tinged).
  • Abdominal pain.
  • Menstrual cramping.
  • Increase of pressure in pelvis.
  • Low back pain especially if you didn’t have it before.


  • You might have some leaking of colostrum, if so put some nursing pads in you bra to protect your clothes.
  • You may have to buy a larger size bra.


Circumcision or not?

You  might want to have this discussion now and discuss your questions with your doctor since he will be doing the procedure if you choose to circumcise your little boy.


“I’m 31 weeks along, and at my childbirth classes they’ve been telling us to concentrate on a focal point during labor. Anything from a picture to a crack in the wall or ceiling can work, so long as it helps Mom relax and distracts her from the pain.”
– Becky

Wants and Don’t Wants:

  • Pain medication during labor.

I have definite opinions about this as I was a L&D nurse. My advice is to think about your ideal labor and delivery and try to keep an open mind about medication since every labor is different and everyone perceives pain differently. Learn about your options, discuss with your practitioner, your doula, your nurse, whoever you have that you respect their opinions. Remember there is nothing wrong with wanting to be comfortable during labor and welcoming your baby.

Stuff to get done and out of the way.

  • Packing your bag.

Although you don’t have to get this done right now you might want to gather your stuff and the little things that will make your hospital stay comfortable. Some things to have on hand.

  • Going home outfit for your sweetie.
  • Snacks, my favorite is lollipops during labor, Whole Foods has some organic fruit ones that are delicious.
  • Socks and slippers.
  • Your favorite pillow
  • A nursing bra and nightie
  • A camera, batteries.
  • Clothes for you to wear home.

Annie and Isabel, a company owned by two nurses whom I know, makes beautiful special hospital gowns for new moms. These are my personal favorites. They are great for nursing moms and make any mom feel special after having a baby. They are wonderful for pictures too. Put them on your registry. You can also wear these gowns to doctors check-ups.

pregnancy and delivery

Perfect for Moms

Adrienne will be wearing this one, I am gifting it to her…it is one of the prettiest gowns!

I have seen and personally worn Annie and Isabel Hospital Gowns.

Annie & Isabel Designer Hospital Gowns Are Great For… Pregnancy & Delivery Gift yourself, a friend, or family member a comfortable and gorgeous hospital gown to help the new mommy in your life feel beautiful during this precious time. There are many reasons why having your own hospital gown makes sense. There are even more reasons why having an Annie & Isabel hospital gown is the best choice.
Source: Pregnancy and Delivery


Sweet Evasive Slumberland

Sweet Evasive Slumberland

by Adrienne Lavine

slumberland awaits...sunset


Setting out to slumberland seems to be a sweet memory of my pre-pregnancy state of mind.

Since I became pregnant the reality is I never know how I’m going to sleep at night . I always fall asleep pretty fast but I hardly ever stay asleep for any length of time. Getting up to go to the bathroom several times a night is inevitable. Whether or not I get back to sleep can be quite the challenge.

Sleep being difficult since becoming pregnant has forced me to develop a nightly routine which helps me to sleep better. I try to incorporate relaxing and soothing things into my nightly quest for sleep. I start to wind down about an hour before slipping off to slumberland.

My routine:

  • I wash my face and put on moisturizer.
  • Take a hot shower and lather up with Dial lavender body wash because I love the soothing scent.
  • Oil my thighs, butt, belly and boobs with Clairins Houle Tonic to prevent stretch marks (recently, I switched to Weleda).
  • Climb into some comfy PJs (this includes a sports bra or sleep bra) and recently I was introduced to Belabumbum from my mom’s friend Jessica at Momma’s Gone City.
  • Take my prenatal vitamin and extra folic acid.
  • Curl up in bed with my body pillow and husband.
  • Since the baby is able to enjoy music, play Mozart for him.
  • Lights off…Slumberland awaits!

Tips for sleep:

Now that the weather is warmer, my husband and I also take a walk at night after dinner. The fresh air and sounds of summer also have quite the calming effect on me.

If I can’t stay asleep, there are a few things that I do. I switch them up because every night is different.

Listen to music (I put my laptop on the floor and turn on Pandora. Commercial-free is essential)

Get up and go into the family room to read a magazine or book (sometimes I just like to flip through the latest issue of Marie Claire)

Have a cup of hot tea (decaf, of course) with a piece of whole grain toast and peanut butter

Turn the lights on dim in the hallway and crack my door a tiny bit (sometimes the dark and quiet is a bit suffocating)

Exercise to slumberland

Pregnant and Exercise

These are just a few things that work for me but sometimes I’m awake for a couple hours during the night and know that there is a better night’s sleep ahead.

The Traveling Baby Shower Weekend

Traveling Baby Shower

Rich of the Traveling Baby Shower

Ten days ago we had a visit from my daughter’s husband and his dad. They were on a mission…a “Traveling Baby Shower” for my daughter Adrienne, who is soon going to welcome a son into the world.IMG_1168

For several years now our basement has been full of baby gear, including a Pottery Barn crib, Bugaboo carriage/stroller, high chair, car seats, swing, clothes and many toys. I am happy to report that all these items have found a new home in Rhode Island.

Here in Chicago it has been rainy for the past few weeks and Friday evening when we were packing up the SUV of course it was pouring buckets. It was not an easy task shoving all of the baby gear into such a small space. With the help of a friend, Rich and his dad were able to drag all the cargo out of the basement and pack the SUV literally to the gills only leaving the front seats empty and unable to move, it was similar to a coach airplane seat.


After the Traveling Baby Shower SUV was happily all packed I served up a delicious dinner of chicken saltimbocca, pasta ala Mario Batalli, Ceasar Salad and refreshing drinks. It was a great little celebration of a job well done plus a relaxing moment with our son and his dad. We had some laughs and the two grandpas had some fun trading stories.


It wasn’t too late when we all crawled into our beds. The traveling twosome had to get some serious zzz’s before getting on the road early Saturday.

Since I am a all about good food, Saturday morning started with Puerto Rican coffee, a frittata, toast and orange juice. A breakfast send off for our two men, who were taking the Traveling Baby Shower to Rhode Island where my daughter would be waiting.


I am happy to report as I am writing this post the baby gearapalooza arrived in Rhode Island and all the “gifts” are put away safely.

Mommy-to-be and Daddy-to-be are presently both sighing with relief that the huge Traveling Baby Shower weekend is now behind them.

Pregnancy at 30 Weeks

Pregnancy at 30 Weeks

Pregnancy at 30 Weeks


I am thrilled that my daughter is in her third trimester of pregnancy as is she…”the homestretch”. Soon we will be meeting the newest member of our family.

He is now around 15.7 inches from head to heal and the size of a large cabbage!

Right now his eyesight allows him to make out faces that would be only a few inches away from him. So this is just perfect since he will be held closely to his mom and dad when he is born and will be able to see their smiling, loving faces.

Source: Your pregnancy: 30 weeks | BabyCenter

Life at 30 weeks gestation:

  • Trouble sleeping.
  • Feeling tired.
  • Feeling clumsy due to being heavier with your weigh concentrated in your belly with a shift in your center of gravity.
  • Your ligaments are much more lax, joints are now looser which will make your balance a little off.
  • Mood swings may return due to hormones, creating more ups and downs.
  • One in 10 expectant women battle depression during pregnancy. Also let your caregiver know if you’re frequently nervous or anxious.
  • If you can’t shake your mood swings tell your caregiver.

“I realized that finding a good pediatrician would be at least as important as finding a good doctor or midwife, so I started my search early. I asked my midwife and her assistant, the workers, administrators and mothers at two daycare centers, and my local hospital’s referral center for recommendations. The two practitioners whose names came up most often were the ones I interviewed.”
– Patti


Take time to Breath

Labor Worries:

You may be worrying about labor pain, needing an episiotomy, possibility of C-Section, this is normal and feel free to talk to your caregiver each time you have a visit.

This week’s activity

  • Start putting together baby gear, it can be overwhelming so start as soon as possible.
  • Make sure you have batteries.


Pregnant with Anxiety

Pregnancy and Anxiety… by Adrienne Lavine

Wedding Day Anxiety

Wedding Day October 2014


Be proactive. Be proactive. Be proactive.

Less than a year ago this was me getting married last Fall in Newport, Rhode, Island. We were nervous as newlyweds but now we are about to become parents and it is a whole  kind of nervous.

I have had especially high anxiety during this time in my life.

My brain and mind are always on the go. Falling asleep at night is not a problem because I am just so tired but I usually wake up at least once for an extended period of time. I lie awake usually up for about two hours or so. Sometimes I even wake up gasping for air and other times have erupted into full-blown panic attacks. Sometimes I know what caused the panic attack and other times I have no idea.

Women and Infants Hospital has a very specialized program that caters only to women who are pregnant or new moms who suffer from anxiety or depression. Having either one of these conditions during pregnancy increases the chance of having problems postpartum. I am trying to avoid these issues. Wanting to be as physically and mentally healthy as possible inspired me to call and make an appointment for an evaluation of my anxiety. I was not looking for medication so I was set up with a clinical social worker. My initial meeting with the social worker was for about an hour. Together we reviewed my medical history and talked about my anxiety and certain aspects of my life that maybe relevant to my anxious feelings.

Truthfully, there are so many things that I am anxious about when it comes to becoming a new parent. I worry about finances, being a good mother, labor and delivery, the change in my lifestyle (all common things for a pregnant woman). We also discussed feeding, birth control after delivery (it seems a little early but I realize it is all important stuff) and it is all cumulative when it comes to disrupting my sleep.


The social worker decided that I did not need to attend the Day Program offered at Womens and Infants. Instead, she referred me to two therapists who were closer to where I live. Both of who are clinical social workers.

I am not ashamed to say that I’ve been seeing a therapist on a weekly basis with whom I really connect. I am proud that I’ve taken control of the situation to better myself. I know that I did myself a favor by getting help as soon as possible. Talking with someone who is objective works for me and I couldn’t be more grateful to be surrounded by such a wonderful network of support during this important time in my life as I get ready to be a parent.

Pregnancy at 29 weeks

Pregnancy at 29 Weeks


I can’t believe that in 10 weeks or so I will be meeting my new grandson for the first time!

Right now he weighs in at about 2 1/2 pounds. He is only the size of a butternut squash and is about 15 inches long from head to heel.

Preset Style = Natural Format = 6" (Medium) Format Margin = None Format Border = Straight Drawing = #2 Pencil Drawing Weight = Medium Drawing Detail = Medium Paint = Natural Paint Lightness = Normal Paint Intensity = Normal Water = Tap Water Water Edges = Medium Water Bleed = Average Brush = Natural Detail Brush Focus = Everything Brush Spacing = Narrow Paper = Watercolor Paper Texture = Medium Paper Shading = Light Options Faces = Enhance Faces

Right now in his growth spurt he is making nutritional demands on his mom. He needs plenty of protein, Vitamin C, folic acid and iron along with Calcium to help his still developing and hardening bones. So it is time for my daughter to make sure she is still eating plenty of healthy foods like milk, cheese, yogurt and even enriched orange juice.

Source: Your pregnancy: 29 weeks | BabyCenter

If you are 29 weeks pregnant here are some of the things you may encounter:

  • You may be asked to do kick counts and notify you healthcare provider if you notice that your baby is becoming less active.
  • You may have a nonstress test or biophysical profile to check on how baby is doing in utero.
  • Heartburn and constipation may return or become worse due to smooth muscle relaxation throughout your body and gastrointestinal tract causing sluggish digestion, gas and heartburn.
  • The crowding in your abdomen also contributes to your gastrointestinal discomfort.
  • Hemorrhoids can become troublesome at this time as well, so avoid sitting or standing for long stretches. Ask your provider before using over the counter remedies. Eating high fiber diet and drinking plenty of water and getting regular exercise continues to be important now.

Supine Hypotension Syndrome

When lying flat on your back the weight of your baby and uterus on major blood vessels may cause you to become lightheaded due to a change in your heart rate and blood pressure. Instead try to lay on you side and get up slowly to a standing position to avoid getting dizzy.

“Shake the pregnancy blahs by enjoying your last weeks of pre-baby freedom. Do all the things you probably won’t have time for — movies, facials, romantic dinners with your mate — once your little one is here.”

Now that you are 29 weeks into your pregnancy:

Make sure you buy these things to have on hand when baby comes.

  • Wipes and diapers
  • Small baby nail clippers, a baby thermometer take a look at the Kinsa it has a app for your phone I love it, a “snot sucker”, NoseFrida Nasal Aspirator and pacifier
  • Pick up some Dreft, baby laundry detergent
  • Sanitary pads for yourself
  • Thank you cards and stamps
  • Paper towels and paper plates for ease at meal and snack time


Pregnancy and Cleaning Your House Safely

Pregnancy and House Cleaning

pregnancyHow difficult it is to choose the “right” cleaning products for your home? This is an especially hard task for mom-to-be during her pregnancy.

I find it super difficult these days because of the many years I have been married to certain  products especially those I use for cleaning my home. The more I read and the more I know about harmful chemicals the more concerned I have become for the safety of my family and as well as my pets.

DIY and mixing my own cleaning products is not my thing although I wish I had the time to devote to this. Instead I would prefer to buy safe products and focus on spending my time making healthy foods for my family’s enjoyment.


The United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has come out with a new labeling system that may make decisions easier. The new product label will help you select products that have safer chemical ingredients with an option for fragrance-free, and maintain a high standard for quality. What does the label mean for pregnant women?

Source: News Moms Need » Blog Archive » The safer choice

The new Safer Choice EPA label will assist the pregnant women to identify and make safe selections of cleaning products.


Staying safe is paramount in most moms and pregnant women’s daily routine. Staying away from stuff that can hurt you or your baby is confusing at best. This new labeling system could make your mom life easier when making cleaning product choices while earnestly attempting to keep a clean house to protect yourself from infections.

  • Read labels on cleaning products look for the Safer Choice label.
  • Do not use any product that specifies it is toxic (poisonous).
  • Although ammonia or chlorine (bleach) are not harmful in cleaning products the smell may cause nausea. To avoid this open windows and doors, wear rubber gloves and NEVER mix them together this can cause dangerous fumes

Things to avoid to have a safer pregnancy for you and your baby.

  • Changing cat litter
  • Hot baths, hot tubs and saunas
  • Lead exposure from old pipes and faucets
  • Mercury from broken bulbs and thermometers
  • Pesticides and certain chemicals (check labels)

via March of Dimes

Pregnancy is often a time of worry and fretting about all kinds of things especially things that cannot be controlled for, however the new Safer Choice labeling can wash some of your worries away.

Traveling during Pregnancy

Pregnancy…travel when you can…

by Adrienne Lavine

Pregnancy Travel

During Easter Break, week 17 into week 18, I met my family in Pompano Beach, Florida for a little  pregnancy R&R.

I was nervous for the whole three and half hour flight but I made it and it was well worth it. Family time, warm weather, salt air and sunshine were just what I needed.

My suggestion, if you can during pregnancy, is to travel when the opportunity presents itself. This freedom will be gone before I know it. Time with my family is very special. I slept better. I was up early and out the door by eight at the latest. I really started to look forward to breakfast, especially by the beach. I also took a daily walk on the beach to keep up with my exercise. What better way to exercise than in the sunshine with my feet in the sand and the ocean?

Pregnancy 17 Weeks

I also realize that I was now into my second trimester. I was less tired, less anxious and more energetic and generally enjoying myself more frequently. We spent the day by the pool or on the beach and then would go out for a delicious dinner. I couldn’t have asked for a more delightful five days.

It rejuvenated me.

I also felt pretty darn good in my Victoria’s Secret bikini with my newly acquired pregnancy curves.


This post was not sponsored.