Category Archives: non-baby related

My Products During Pregnancy

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Throughout this pregnancy, I have gotten lots of advice about which products to use for which ailments/symptoms.

I tried a lot of different things, and THESE are the ones that I really appreciated and used. If you’re just starting out, keep in mind that there are lots of options out there! These are just my preferences. 🙂

My least favorite thing in the world? Heartburn. I’d never had it until I got pregnant, and it is just awful.

tums

The second thing that kept me up at night was numb hands. One thing that actually helped was using wrist braces. It kept me aware of my wrist position, even if I was asleep.

Braces, Supports & Rehabilitation Products

In order to prevent stretch marks, a colleague gave me this product from Mama Mio. It’s really oily, but it feels great and smells nice. So far, no stretch marks! I’m around week 37, so I think I’m all good at this point!

mama mioYou can find the Mama Mio product at Yes Style!

Beauty Korean

Along the same lines, I have started to apply Lansinoh’s Lanolin to my boobs. It’s supposed to soothe and heal sore nipples after breastfeeding, but I’ve heard it can also help to toughen you up before you even start. So occasionally, I will use that just to get into the habit. 🙂

lansinoh

Throughout my pregnancy, you may have seen my workout posts. I did Crossfit throughout the whole thing. And I loved my Reebok Crossfit shoes. They were bright and colorful. And since Crossfit incorporates a lot of weightlifting, it’s important that the bottoms of the shoes are flat. If you’re trying to do squats, and you’re already on your toes a little (if the shoes have too much cushion), then you’re setting yourself up to fall forward. Reebok teamed up with CF to make a whole line of products. After I have the baby, I’ll stock up on some CF gear!

Here’s a picture of me, wearing my Reebok CF shoes. And then there’s a link where you can get some, too. 🙂

Picking up barbell

 

Those were the main things that kept me happy and sane!

What were your favorite pregnancy products?

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Blog Button Design Battle Round 3!

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Welcome to Round 3 of the Blog Button Design Battle with Peacoats & Plaid. Want to know who won Round 2? Drum roll please…

Congrats to Kalyn from Love, Laughter, Happily Ever After! Kalyn’s winning button design:
 

The runner-up spot goes to Amberly from Life with Amberly & Joe.


This week’s participants include:

Samantha from Designer in Teal

Jess from Plucky’s Second Thought

Petro from The Seaman Mom

Diana from DD Kimball Road

Danysia from That L.A. it Girl

Bethany from Before, During, and After

JMc from Running on Empty

Ashley from Him & Her

Danavee from This Vintage Grove

Kristin from Hopelessly Ever After

Vote for your favorite and most eye-catching button by clicking on the thumbnail below. Make sure you’re voting solely on eye appeal. You can only vote once, so make it count.



Check back next week for Round 4. If you’re interested in participating in Season 2 of the Blog Button Design Battle, make sure you subscribe to Peacoats & Plaid for updates.

I’m Funny! I Swear!

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I’m funny, right? I can be sort of witty when I try real hard. Example: I’ve had at least 5 people this year tell me that my Facebook status updates crack them up. When they are having a bad day, they just hop on over to the FB and find my latest update, and all their worries and troubles go away.

Somehow that doesn’t translate to everything. Twitter? I can’t do it. Some folks are hilarious on Twitter. I’ll sit there, going through my feed, and laugh and laugh. They pack a pretty powerfully punny punch (you like my alliterations?) in a few short words. Twitter’s like the Mitch Hedberg of social media. Or tweeters are the Mitch Hedbergs… you get my point.

Hedberg during his Comedy Central Presents spe...

Hedberg in 1999

When it comes to writing something longer, like *cough cough* a post on this blog, my funny bone breaks down, jumps out the window, gets run over by a car….. and I don’t really find it again until I hop onto Facebook. What’s up with that?

So my LIFE goal for the short term is to find a way to be funny all the time. I should start writing my blog posts in spurts. I’ll write 2-3 sentences at a time, take a break for an hour, and continue on like that. It might take hours and hours, but it could be worth it. I could be famous one day.

I think that the best blogs are the ones that are a little bit silly, a little funny. And whilst I know that, I don’t really transfer it over to my bloggo. As soon as I click “New Post”, I get all serious and stuff, trying to be meaningful. People have enough meaning in their real lives. They hop on the Internet to be entertained! Last I checked, INTERNET is an acronym for I Need To Enjoy, Right Now, Entertaining Things.

For today though, I must be a serious professional and mold the minds of today’s youths. Wish me luck.

I Am Grateful

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This has not been a rough pregnancy. I have heard stories about vomit in the shower, not being able to eat your favorite foods, aching lower backs, and more. But overall, it’s been a fairly easy pregnancy; I’m just a whiner. 🙂

Along the way, there have been some people who have really made a difference and made my life more enjoyable.

These are the wonderful people I want to thank before “everything changes”.

1. My husband, Cameron

I’ve complained since September about all the aches and pains and body image issues. But he has been there, supporting, loving, and praising me. Even though I don’t always believe him, he never fails to tell me I’m beautiful every day and that he loves me every day. I can be pretty grumpy and needy, but he hasn’t let it get to him.

We’ve grown SO much closer since I got pregnant. He’s going to be a fantastic dad, and it’s pretty cool to see him get so excited about it.

2. My mom and dad

I talk to my mom every few days, and my dad and I keep in touch via text more than anything. My mom has been really happy and excited this whole time, and when I’m feeling down about something, she’s always been a support. My dad plays the role of silly father, and it cracks me up. If anyone else said I was getting “plump” since I’m pregnant, I’d be offended. But for some reason, coming from him, it’s just hilarious and instead, brightens my mood.

PART B:

There are other family members who’ve been really great!

I’m thankful to my Aunt Deena and Grammy (both on my mom’s side) who bought our crib.
I’m thankful for my brothers.
I’m thankful for my cousin Amy who has been really excited for me this whole time.
I’m thankful for my cousins Gwen, Kim, and Fran (on my dad’s side) who popped up on Facebook and have been showering me with love!
I’m thankful for Cameron’s mom Laura, who has been so sweet online and also sent a delightful care package for the baby!
Cameron’s extended family, Grandma Kay, Nanny Sue, Aunt Kay, cousin Roxie, and Sandra, who’ve been really supportive, either with care packages or just kind words!

3. My personal trainer (and friend), Chris S

I hope he doesn’t mind that I posted THIS particular picture of him. I only have two pictures to choose from!

Chris has been really supportive from the beginning. I was doing Crossfit with Cameron for about 4 months, with Chris and some other coaches. When I got pregnant, I told Chris about it, and immediately, he wanted to work with me. He’d worked with pregnant women before, so I knew he was someone I could trust. I took a brief hiatus because I was exhausted and nauseous a lot. When I came back, we started working out together on a regular basis. He always pushes me to go a little further and lift a little more (without raising my heart rate or getting overheated, of course!). He also recognizes if I’ve had a bad day and either (a) tries to cheer me up or (b) knows to just let me be. He has been the main reason I’ve stayed one of those “only pregnant in the belly” women.

Here’s a post where I talk about doing Crossfit while pregnant! And here’s my most recent workout.

4. Crosswalk Kids (aka Jen G)

That’s a picture of our pastor and his wife, Jen. She is the coordinator of the kids’ ministry at our church. (Technically, our church has 7 locations, so she’s the coordinator at our particular location.) I serve as the “greeter”, which means I welcome all of the kids and parents every Sunday morning, get everyone checked in, pass out name tags, and that sort of thing. Jen does a little bit of everything. On top of that, she’s a great mom to 3 awesome little boys. And she’s become a really good friend of mine over the past year.

Right when I became pregnant, she was one of the first people I told (before I even got it confirmed by the doctor). She has been so helpful and supportive throughout this journey. From a few hand-me-downs from her own children to helping with the baby shower, she has been an invaluable part of my life the past 8 months.

PART B:

There are some other folks involved with CWK that I’d like to mention.

Bethany (aka B3), who has helped me take my mind off being pregnant every Sunday with her silly stories.
All the teachers who have been so sweet with their words: Hannah, Becca, Catherine, Chenoa, Carissa, Kathryn, Rachel, Ian, Kara, and I just know I’m leaving someone out.
All the moms! I don’t even know everyone’s name (I know all the kids’ names because those are on the name tags!). Lori, Diedre, Eun, Karen, and all the other moms (and a few dads 🙂 ) who ask how I’m feeling and tell me I look great every week. I don’t usually believe those comments, but it is nice to hear them on a regular basis!

5. My coworkers

Here’s our Math department (on Pi Day this year)! That’s Yufanyi, Kim, Susan, me, and Shanna (the chair). These ladies have been supportive in a very practical way this year. There’ve been days when I just couldn’t make it. I either needed to stay home or leave early, and they were all there to help out. Someone would make my copies, cover my classes, or just make sure I was okay at home. Either way, I knew that I was covered. It also helps to get rides home when I’m just too tired to walk and don’t feel like waiting for the bus!

It was refreshing to know that my classroom wasn’t going to go haywire because I wasn’t there: I have a great team of support to help out and back me up as needed. That’s great any time but especially when you’re pregnant! It doesn’t hurt that Susan has 5 children of her own, and Shanna has 3, so they are also great resources in that respect!

PART B:

There are some coworkers that aren’t pictured who have been amazing.

Katy, who always tells me stories about her kids and asks how I’m doing every day.
Mr Bennett, who says “How Y’ALL doing?” every day.
Tina, who I think may be more excited than I am about having this baby. She also helped out tremendously with the baby shower (with Jen, above).
Barb, who was one of the first to empathize with my more mellow reaction to being pregnant.
Grace, who came back late this year after having her first child. She’s given me loads of insight and also some sweet pillows. 🙂
To all you guys and everyone else, THANK YOU for your support! It really has meant so much.

6. New mom, Sophia/Best friend

This is Sophia and her husband Ty. She just had her baby in March. She was in my wedding, and before that, we were in grad school together in NYC (and we were roommates there). She’s hilarious, and I was so surprised back around September when she told me she was expecting! I was thrilled because Cameron and I were just about to find out we, too, were expecting. Since she was 3 months ahead of me, it was so great talking to her on the phone from time to time. I had questions, she had answers. It was fun to dish about pregnancy with a close friend. And now that she has a little one (and we’re almost there), I know she’ll be honest with me about the realities of having a newborn.

7. Expecting mom, Mary/Best friend

Another best friend of mine who was also in my wedding, Mary was my college roommate back in Louisiana. For a while, she was living in Georgia with her husband Payton. Then, around October, she told me that she, too, was pregnant! And then, better news, they moved up here to Washington DC in January. While we don’t see each other ALL that often, we’ve hung out several times. And it’s fun to chat about pregnancy stuff, honestly. It’s not always a treat to discuss it with friends who aren’t pregnant (or even married). But when I know that Mary is going through the same sorts of things, it’s kind of fun. And now, I can be her Sophia since I’m a month ahead!

Mary has a calming presence, so whenever we’re together, I feel like everything’s going to be okay.

8. My circles of friends

PART A: Church

Thanks to my smaller small group: Claire, Emma, Rachel, and Brooke. These ladies have been really supportive in the short time I’ve known them. Brooke is also expecting (about 3 months behind me!).
Thanks to Heidi, the leader of the big small group. She is a constant smiling face and is a really great mentor to all the girls in our humongous group.
Helen (and Jesse) helped tremendously with putting together the crib and organizing baby clothes!
The hospitality girls are perfect for brightening my Sundays: Katy, Paige, Jessica, Hope, Jinna, Gia…

PART B: Crossfit

There are other coaches at the gym besides Chris. For example, here’s Stephanie (Chris’ better half) and Sara. These two, along with Tom and Julia, have been great at keeping me motivated and helping me to stay strong.

Additionally, I’ve really come to appreciate Erica, Adrian, Devon, Kelly, Katie, and Lizzie (who’s also expecting). Adrian always smiles and tells me how cute my bump is. Erica is the most encouraging, uplifting person EVER. And everyone else has just been great. I was self-conscious at first about showing up and taking up so much time from Chris, but I’ve really felt supported there.

PART C: Craigslist

My Craigslist friend is Elena. We found each other on Craigslist about two years ago! I posted something about looking for friends in the area, and she had posted something similar. So we started hanging out from time to time. Then she found out she was pregnant, and last February (2012), she had her son Ian. We have kept in touch for a while now, and she’s been another support in my life if I have pregnancy or baby questions.

9. My students

I can’t post any pictures of my students since they’re minors, and I’d probably need written permission from all 130 of their parents!

But I’ll say that my students have been really great. Of course, they don’t always have a lot of tact (“Ooo, she gettin’ big!” or “You look REAL pregnant today!”), but mostly, they ask lots of questions. How much longer? Is it a boy or a girl? Do you have a name (generally followed by, “If it’s a boy/girl, you should name him insert student’s name)? They are often brutally honest, so when someone says “You’re big up front, but you still look gooood”, I believe it. And don’t think I’ve forgotten that having 130 teenagers every year for the past 4 years here in DC has given me a nice collection of  about 500 potential babysitters!

10. The rest of ’em

There are a few folks who I’ll just group together 🙂

Shea, my former eye doctor and current neighbor, is also a new mom. Her baby was born in May (just last week!) of this year. We would bump (hehe) into each other from time to time, and it was fun to see each other grow. We talked about the weird things happening to us and what sort of stroller to get. It was fun knowing that she’s just a few floors down. It’s also great to know that she and her husband are probably going to move out of their larger apartment some time in the next year or two, so Cameron and I can check that out when the time comes!

Facebook friends! I have lots of FB friends, folks from high school and elementary school, some former students, Cameron’s family, and a lot in between. I have been trying NOT to post too much baby stuff on Facebook (I’m not sure what the percentage is, but I think that my posts are about 20% baby or pregnancy-related). The feedback is so kind! There are way too many nice comments and likes for me to really thank everyone individually. I hope that I did a good enough job of thanking you along the way.

The next phase of life is near! And I’m afraid that if I hadn’t written this post beforehand, it never would have happened. It has been a wild ride, but I do hope that I look back with fond memories. There were good times and bad, just like with anything. And soon enough, it’ll all be worth it.

Liebster Award

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Liebster-Award

Turns out, there is a blog nomination thing that is called a Liebster award – it’s sort of a chain letter for bloggers. You get nominated, then you nominate folks, and so on. It’s to give new bloggers a little more exposure.

Sooo I was nominated by Laura at The Experimental Home!

Thanks Laura 🙂

It is now my responsibility to pass on the favor to some other new bloggers. And here are the rules:

  • Thank your nominator! Include a link back to their blog and a virtual hug :)
  • Answer the 11 questions given to you by your nominator
  • Post 11 facts about yourself
  • Nominate 5-11 {I’ve seen various numbers} other up-and-coming blogs with less than 200 followers for the award–no tag backs!
  • Come up with 11 questions for your nominees to answer
  • Let your nominees know you nominated them so they too can pass on the Liebe! {German for “Love”}

Here are my 11 questions:

1) What is your favorite thing about your blog?
I like writing, and this gives me a place to do that. It’s also really nice to hear the feedback from my friends and family who actually read/follow it.

2) What aspects of blogging do you hope to improve on?
Time management! I spend a lot of time doing “blog stuff”, but I don’t know how well my time is being spent. I need to find a way to put in the same amount of time (average of 2-3 hours per day!) and actually get loads of followers and sponsors and all that jazz.

3) Where is your ‘happy place’?
My husband won’t like this… but it’s kind of Starbucks. Something about having that little cup with the green logo, all warm in my hands… it’s just comforting. And, I’ll admit, I also like the gym these days.

4) What song is in your head right now?
Right this second? Ack, I’m embarrassed: “Just Dance” by Lady Gaga. Don’t ask me why!!

5) What is your favorite article of clothing?
Currently it’s my black skinny maternity jeans. Ask me again in two months!

6) What color best describes you?
I have no idea! I would say Green. It’s growth. It’s bright but not too bright (I’m not referring to smarts here! If I were, I would be neon yellow, ok?). It’s not dreary.

7) Is that color your favorite color?
I would say my favorite color is Blue – it’s been my standard answer for 10 years. But if I really think about it, I do like Pink, Black, and Yellow, too.

8) Where do you keep your toothbrush?
In the medicine cabinet!

9) What would you do with a free hour?
Take a nap. Absolutely.

10) What did you want to be when you grew up?
I USED to want to be a surgeon. Then I got a C in Biology 101 and figured I was in it for the wrong reasons. I reassessed and realized that I love Math. Why not do something with that? And now I’m a Math teacher. Whadya know?

11) Do you have a guilty pleasure?
I try not to feel guilty about anything. But I could say Justin Bieber is a guilty pleasure.

Here are 11 Facts About Bethany:

1. I spent age 10 months to about 8 years living in Stuttgart Germany.
2. I can solve a Rubik’s Cube, on a good day, in about 1 minute.
3. I once met Julia Roberts. Living in NYC, I got to meet (not just SEE), a bunch of famous people! It was awesome. I’m obsessed with famous people.
4. I type 130 correct words per minute.
5. I can tell you all the books of the Bible in order. 🙂 (Yesssss Bible drill)
6. I have an addictive personality.
7. I love Reese’s Peanut Butter cups. And also Double Stuf Oreos.
8. I’m 8 months pregnant!
9. I shower at night.
10. I have seen every episode of The Office (the American version) at least 25 times. That’s not an exaggeration.
11. I could eat pizza every single day of my life. I just have self control, so I only have it once or twice a week. 🙂

Here are the bloggers I have nominated:

Pam at PJs Treasures
Sarah at Special Moments
Mama H at Thursday’s Child, Friday’s Thoughts
Celeste at #ThinThursday
Allie at This Yellow House

Let me just say – it was tough finding folks with fewer than 200 followers! I wasn’t quite sure where to look. Generally speaking, I stuck to Bloglovin’ followers!

Here are the 11 questions that ^they^ have to answer!

1. If you could live in any century (or decade), which would it be?
2. What one meal could you eat every day forever?
3. Which TV show do you watch and rewatch, one that never seems to get old?
4. Which celebrity (dead or alive) do you want to have lunch with?
5. What’s the best vacation spot you’ve ever traveled to?
6. Do you prefer Michael Jackson or The Beatles?
7. What’s the last text message you received?
8. How do you like your tea/coffee?
9. Are you a morning, afternoon, or night person?
10. What’s your spirit animal? Just kidding…. but if you could be any animal, which would it be?
11. What’s your favorite holiday?

Thanks again to Laura for the nomination! That was fun! And to Pam, Sarah, H, Celeste, and Allie – keep the chain going. 🙂

What I’ve Learned in One Month of Blogging

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Today is May 4.

Unofficially, I started my blog at the end of August last year. But I REALLY started my blog (promoting and all that) on April 4.

On April 4, I had had 9 page views. Here was my first post where I really put in some effort.

As of this morning, I’ve had a little over 3,000 page views. Yay! Movin’ on up.

Looking back to the beginning, there were so many things I did NOT know about blogging! And here is my current list (although I’m sure that, after 1 year, the list will look much different):

What I’ve Learned in One Month of Blogging:

1. Blogging is more than just writing about a particular topic and clicking “publish”. If no one’s reading, you’ve got yourself a personal online journal.

2. When you have a tiny starter blog, no one will randomly find it. I did a Google search for “pregnancy blogs”. I wasn’t in the first 10 pages of results. I’m not going to keep looking. My point is that followers won’t find you. You have to find them.

3. Link parties! I’d never heard of them. Some people call them Linky Parties, but I prefer “link”. Basically, you find these online gatherings where people ask you to post on a specific topic OR submit just your main blog URL. For example, there are lots of “here’s what I wore today” parties. There are tons of “DIY and crafts” parties. You can search for specific types of parties or…..

4. If you follow lots of people (on Bloglovin‘, which is similar to what Google Reader was), often they’ll follow back. If you read their posts daily, you’ll find new link parties that way.

5. I’ve learned a lot of HTML this month! Some of it is so second-nature to me now, it’s funny that I just learned it.

6. If someone comments on your blog, it’s just polite to go back to their blog and comment, too.

7. There are some really awesome folks out there. While I’ve just “met” many of them, I really enjoy getting to know them through their posts. Check out “Link Parties” at the top of the page to see who they are!

8. Not all blog host sites are created equal. MOST people use Blogger, I’ve discovered. There are some widgets (basically, little add-ons to your site’s look) that are not available in WordPress without a plug-in. In order to use a plug-in, you need access to your site’s HTML page. In order to access your site’s HTML page, you have to pay for the web space and host your site yourself. Sooo, I’m not there yet.

9. I’ve got an addictive personality. I found that blogging is something I’m good at and enjoy. So I spend WAY too much time every day doing it. I’m thinking this baby will slow me down when he shows up.

10. Post often. Post regularly. You can’t just post 1 thing Monday, 3 things Friday, and then not post again for two weeks. Unless you’re the Pioneer Woman, folks are going to quickly move on from you!

That was complete stream of consciousness. I have a feeling there are other things I’ve learned, but that’s definitely a good summary. Any thoughts from other bloggers out there?

Friday Recap (with Pictures)

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I’ve decided I want a few blog-related traditions:

1. Friday Recap: Every Friday, I’ll post some pictures I’ve taken during the week.
2. Obligatory Outfit Post: Every Monday, I’ll post an outfit from the past week.
3. Today’s Workout: Every Tuesday, I’ll post my workout of the day (maybe it will include pictures, too!).
4. Weekly Baby Update: Every Thursday, I’ll update you guys on either the pregnancy OR the baby.

Moving right along…

text from camOn Sunday, Cameron wanted to make sure that his outfit was up to par. 🙂

inspiration picThis is my inspiration photo for ONE MONTH AFTER THE BABY! I’m just kidding.
Also, trainer Chris is not happy about this. He says she probably isn’t that strong. And I’m way stronger. And I should be satisfied with my hard work. And blah blah blah.

ink on handsI had a fight with my wet erase markers.

spraypaint girlSaw this pretty piece spray painted onto an electric box on the way home from the gym

old land roverI’m a fan of Land/Range Rovers. Check out this sweet, older model!

misspelled nameI just love it when someone spells my name wrong. 🙂 Bethney is a new one for me.

milk in bowlI was so tired yesterday morning that I poured myself a bowl of milk. I didn’t realize that usually you put cereal in there, too.

text from momMy mama was trying to pep me up! I was exhausted (see previous photo!), and she was encouraging me a little. 🙂

So… how was your week?

 

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