Saturday, February 21, 2015

A Typical Day in the Life of My Unborn Son least how I imagine things are going in there:

3:20 AM - I've been sleeping for a while, but now seems like a good time to roll around. Mom already shifted from her right to left side about three times trying to get comfortable and she seems to have found a good spot. This means it's my turn to get comfy now.

3:23 AM - It seems I have disturbed Mom, because now she's up and moving around. I might have accidentally rolled on her bladder, again. I can't help it. It just keeps getting in my way!

4:45 AM - So I went back to sleep for a little bit but that got old pretty fast. I'm hungry I'm hungry I'm hungry I'm hungry I'm hungry MOM WAKE UP AND EAT SOMETHING.

5:00 AM - That breakfast was so satisfying that now I will do a victory lap with some Rockette kicks while Mom tries to get one last hour of sleep in before work.

7:15 AM - Sweet! Second breakfast.

9:45 AM - Mom has been working pretty hard for about two hours now, so it's a good time for me to remind her that I'm still in here. ATTENTION PLEASE. Time for some break dancing!

10:50 AM - One of my favorite times of the day. Mom is trying to teach her class, and I really want to give some instructions too. I can hear her talking loudly to the class, so I will give an extra push in here to help her out. Oops... that seems to have been counterproductive. Now she's breathing extra hard. I must have pushed on her lungs accidentally.

12:20 PM - Lunch time! I love this meal. Eating is the best. It always makes me want to dance around.

12:50 PM - Mom's folding herself up to get in the car again. I hate this. It's basically the worst. I try to tell her this every time by giving her a good kick in the ribs... but she never seems to get the point. Now she has to sit here and get her breath again. Of course. Come on, Mom. Just quit climbing into the car and we can move past this little routine.

2:00 PM - I can tell Mom is starting to get uncomfortable from being on her feet for so long. This is when she usually tries to sit down for a little bit and maybe put her feet up. I don't mean to make them so swollen, I swear...

3:45 PM - Time for more food! This is the best. Usually Mom tries to go for something healthy like an apple and cheese. Sometimes she will get ice cream, instead... it's no slushy, but that's pretty good too.

4:00 PM - It seems like I have worn Mom out. Time for a nap! For some reason when this happens I get this feeling of something pressing on me, sometimes. I usually kick back. I swear, someday I'm going to find out what's trying to climb all over me and I will get back at it. I bet it's a dog.

5:45 PM - Annnnnnnnnd we're awake and eating again. This is the best. I loooooooove food.

6:30 PM - Mom is finally chilling out and putting her feet up, so it's time for some kickboxing. One time Dad decided to rest his head on top of me around this time, so I kicked him in the face. He totally deserved it! I'm trying to get a workout in, okay?

8:00 PM - Things are starting to get warm, so that must mean Mom is getting another bubble bath. She seems to like those, I guess because I am so heavy that I make her back hurt. Oops. I am looking forward to seeing what a real bath is like someday, because right now no matter how much I move around, I don't really get to experience it. Bummer.

8:45 PM - It seems pretty early to me, but Mom has decided it's time for bed. She's laying on her left side right now, but I'm not psyched about this position. Gotta let her know.

8:50 PM - It took Mom a whole five minutes (GOSH) but finally she turned over to her right side. More comfortable now.

9:00 PM - Just kidding. I liked the left side better.

9:45 PM - MOM YOU ARE ON YOUR BACK, WHAT ARE YOU DOING? This is the worst. I have to let her know. Time to kick the old lungs again.

10:45 PM - Okay, it seems we have found a happy place for now... see ya in the morning, Mom!

See ya soon, Baby boy. : )

Saturday, February 14, 2015

WDW February 2015: Snacks and Quick-service Meals

I have posted about this in the past - after our honeymoon (here, here, and here) and after our trip to Disneyland (here and here)... Disney has some truly awesome food. While we visited a few places we really like on our trip last week, we also had the opportunity to try some new things. (We were disappointed we couldn't get reservations at Be Our Guest or Fulton's Crab House, but I think it's good to try new places... there are so many, after all, and we don't want to get stuck in a rut!)

Fountain at the French Quarter

We stayed at Port Orleans French Quarter again, and got the regular Disney Dining Plan on this trip, which is one table-service (sit down) meal, one quick-service (counter/fast-food) meal, and one snack (basically a la carte items under $5.00) per person per night of your stay. On our honeymoon we used the Deluxe Dining Plan because we had so many signature meals reserved, and the amount of food was overwhelming. I would say that the regular plan for us on this trip was just right. I know my parents and in-laws wound up paying out of pocket for some quick-service meals by the end of the week, because they also got up and went to breakfast in the morning... but A. doesn't generally eat breakfast, and I was able to get pastries or beignets with snack credits in the resort food court, so by the end of the week we had comfortably used all of our meals and snacks while only paying out of pocket for one or two snacks.

One of the reasons A. was so excited to be at the French Quarter again was to get the Shrimp po'boy sandwich, which we split soon after we arrived. I also got beignets again, and tried the new avocado burger, which was pretty good. Our parents had the fish sandwich, which they said was excellent, and my brother tried the ribs and chicken platter one night... which was a ton of food for a quick-service meal! My brother also made quick use of Mardi Grogs, the pool bar, and while I couldn't partake in the drinking, there were a few drinks my family sampled that looked pretty delicious.

In terms of snack credits, this was the clear winner for me for the week:
Cinnamon Roll and LeFou's Brew, Gaston's Tavern, Magic Kingdom

You see that, right? That's not a cinnamon roll. That's a cinnamon CAKE. It was melty and delicious. A. and I split it because it was so giant. I also wanted to try LeFou's Brew because of my current slushy obsession. It's basically an apple juice slushy. The foam on top was really sour and gross, in my opinion. It was neat to try but I don't think I'd be rushing back to New Fantasyland to get it on my next trip. 

Instead of breaking down our food day by day, I figured I'd start with our quick-service meals for the week, and save the table-service meals for another entry.

Columbia Harbor House (Magic Kingdom) - We were already heading here for lunch when the skies opened and it started to pour. Suddenly everyone around us also decided it would be a good time to break here for lunch. Luckily the staff was prepared for this kind of event and herded everyone into the lines. I wasn't crazy hungry at that point (after the cinnamon roll above) so I just had the chicken and fish platter, but A. had the lobster roll. His exact words are "that was outstanding!" He also said the cobbler was great for dessert. (I had the standard Mickey-sprinkled Chocolate cake.) Side note: This is one of the places where people were super nice to the pregnant lady. It was so crowded that we were struggling to find a place to seat, and I had a family offer to let me sit with them with my tray until the rest of my family found a table, so that I didn't have to wander around unnecessarily. That was so thoughtful!

Restarauntosaurus (Animal Kingdom) - This was the biggest surprise of our quick-service meals, I think. We were bummed because Flame Tree Barbecue was closed, so we went here... WOW! I had the Chicken BLT Salad, which was giant and delicious. A. had a standard cheeseburger. However, the kicker here for me was the desserts. We had "cheesecake in a glass," which was topped with a mandarin orange slice. I also got to sample the chocolate mousse because A's mom ordered it. Both of those desserts were outstanding. I would definitely visit there again just for the cheesecake!

Pecos Bill Tall Tale Inn & Cafe (Magic Kingdom) - We literally ran in and out of here while A's parents held our spot on Main Street for the evening parade. Looking back at the menu, I wish I had gotten the salad, but I don't think I would have had enough time to eat it. Instead I had the chicken sandwich and A. had the burger. I again saved my Mickey-sprinkle cake for later, and A. had the carrot cake which he said was tasty.

ABC Commissary (Hollywood Studios) - We wanted to try out Pizza Planet, but to A.'s disappointment, I was unwilling to re-trek the whole way to the back of the park after the Indiana Jones show to get there. Instead we took a shorter walk to the ABC Commissary. There, A. got the seafood platter and I had the chicken sandwich. A's mom had the Asian chicken salad, which she said was very good. As far as dessert went, I had the chocolate mousse (standard). A's parents both had the parfaits, which they said were good. SOMEHOW, I missed these amazing specialty cupcakes that you could pick from for dessert. My dad got a giant chocolate Lady-and-the-Tramp decorated cupcake... I wish I would have seen them before I ordered!

La Cantina de San Angel (EPCOT - Mexico) - This is a quick-service location we've visited before and we knew we wanted to stop by again. We got the nachos and churritos and were able to comfortably split the whole thing for dinner. The only bummer about this one was there was no seating left anywhere, and people were just parked out at the tables (maybe to save seats to see Illuminations? even though it wasn't even 7 when we ordered) without eating. We had to carry our tray over to nearby benches, which were in a smoking section (blah) and eat there in the dark. Despite this, will I return for the food here again? Certainly. : ) Just not in the dark evening hours before Illuminations.

I got a frozen lemonade at the Animal Kingdom and we stopped at this bench for a break... this squirrel had noooooo problems sitting down right next to us, hoping for a handout!

Stay tuned for the next part of my food recap... with lots more pictures... the table-service meals!

Friday, February 13, 2015

Going to Disney World with a Baby on Board

Can someone beam me back to Florida, please?

We have returned from our week-long sojourn to Disney World, and I have to say it was a million times more difficult coming back to PA than usual knowing that we were leaving temperatures in the mid-70s and returning to snow. We were all pretty sad/cranky when we had to leave on Saturday morning. However, it was totally worth the trip. 

As promised, I'm delivering (ha! pun!) my take on being pregnant while at Disney. I was 31 weeks along during our trip. Was it easy? No. Did I still enjoy myself? You bet! We had this trip planned long before little Baby Z came into existence, so it just took some creative planning on my part to make the trip as comfortable as possible for me.

31 weeks in the gardens at the "United Kingdom" in EPCOT... feeling giant

Here are my thoughts, in no particular order of significance, regarding our trip:

1) The comfortable new shoes I bought that fit me in Pennsylvania no longer fit once I arrived in Florida. Amazingly, this possibility never occurred to me. I got a pretty pair of mint-colored Skechers Go Walks and a new pair of my standard Payless Champion slip-on sneakers that I lived in during our last trip. I also had my very broken-in Skechers slip-on sneakers and a pair of Fila memory-foam flip-flops... and those were the two pairs of shoes I wound up wearing the entire trip. Despite my best efforts, my new pairs of shoes would not fit over my giant, swollen ankles and feet. In hindsight, I should have a) made sure my shoes were stretched out, and b) realized that warmer weather would affect my poofy feet. Oops.

2) I made it through the entire trip with no scooter or wheelchair! I am not the most fit person to begin with, and I was not expecting to do well with all of the required Disney walking on said poofy feet in the middle of winter. My father-in-law, who is awesome, told me that if I needed it he would spot me for a scooter or wheelchair for the week and he would gladly push me around if the walking made me uncomfortable. As much fun as it was to imagine whizzing around on a scooter, I put the kabash on that idea because of loading and unloading it onto the buses (no thanks). If we would have stayed longer, I might have considered the use of a wheelchair, but I made it through the week without it... and my calves are still feeling the burn!

3) Breaks are the best. Every blog entry I read prior to the trip about being pregnant at Disney recommended taking a mid-day break, which was sound advice. Not only was it awesome to brag to my PA friends about being at the resort pool on a February afternoon, it was great to be off my feet and take a nap if I needed it. (My husband was definitely okay with a mid-day nap himself.)

You know the picture I posted at the beginning of the entry? Here's the uncropped version with my big poofy feet (complete with ankle brace). This was one of the flip-flop days because I needed a break from spilling out of my sneakers. Sigh. 

4) Consider an ice pack. My mom brought a wrap for her knee in her checked luggage that she could put in a fridge or freezer, and I ended up using it most of the week for my (again) gloriously poofy feet. I'd stack two pillows at the bottom of the bed and lay the ice pack across them and it really helped with my feet swelling. If she hadn't brought it, I probably would have used one of our Ziploc bags and filled it with ice from the ice machine. 

5) SNACKS. Not only did I take advantage of some of Disney's delicious snacks, but I brought a bag of granola bars and fruit snacks to eat when I needed a pick-me-up. Additionally, Disney totally catered to my craving needs. Since early January I have been craving slushies and popsicles. Wouldn't you know that there are oodles of frozen (non-alcoholic of course) drinks I could pick from? I swear... I could have lived off of frozen lemonades for the whole week. Including the times it was cooler.

6) My pregnancy belt was a total lifesaver. I ordered this belt from Amazon around Christmastime because I was having crazy discomfort and pain in my hip-groin area. After online research, I discovered that kind of pain is common from all of the weight of my giant preggo belly bearing down on my hips. (Also, my doctor confirmed this at my very next appointment and told me to get a belt... which I had the satisfaction of saying I had already ordered.) I hand-washed it after all our travel on Sunday, left it to dry overnight on the towel bar, and forgot to wear it on Monday. Needless to say, Monday was rather uncomfortable until we took our mid-day break and I could get that thing on. You can't notice it under my clothes and it's totally worth wearing giving all of the stress it takes off my hips and back. Small miracles!

"It's You Babe" Mini Cradle, $21.25 on Amazon Prime

7) Staying hydrated. I am not very good at the whole "make sure you drink a gallon of water a day" aspect of pregnancy. I blame my occupation - when you are a teacher, you can't just guzzle water all day, because you can't just leave your classroom to go to the bathroom when the urge strikes. But, after the terrible migraine debacle that ensued after getting dehydrated in Disneyland, CA last summer, I definitely wasn't taking any chances. My awesome brother got me some refillable filtered water bottles for Christmas, and we carried them every day. I got bottled water with all of my quick-service meals and really tried to pound it down during our table-service meals, as well. 

Here is a link to the water bottles on Amazon --- 

And for good measure, here's the link to the bag we had to carry everything while we were in Disney. It's nice and sturdy and the water bottle pockets are perfect for these bottles... great easy access!

8) People were generally very accommodating. Apart from my family pushing me on the bus ahead of the rest of them to help assure that I would get a seat, I did have people offer seats to me (and my poofy feet) when none were available. The one time no one offered me a seat on a very crowded bus, my mom just kept one of her hands on a rail and the other one wrapped around me as added protection. : ) 

9) I still enjoyed the parks despite not being able to go on thrill rides. I've been on most of the roller coasters, with the exception of the Seven Dwarfs Mine Train - which should have shorter wait times by the next time we go, anyway, since it won't be as new. I know some of my family felt guilty when they'd troop off to the FastPass line for a roller coaster and I'd bid them adieu and head off to Enchanted Tales with Belle or a Meet and Greet with Cinderella and Rapunzel. I told them not to worry about it because I was sure I could occupy myself... and I did, and I had fun. : ) 

One thing I did hem and haw about before we left was whether I would attempt Kilimanjaro Safari. I couldn't understand why it was on the "restricted" list, as I've been on it before and did not find it speedy or jarring. Honestly, living in the country, I have driven on worse potholed roads and ridden on bumpier hayrides in the past 7 months than I figured I would experience on the safari ride. However, in the end I decided it just wasn't worth risking it. If anything went wrong with the pregnancy later on, I would always wonder if it was because I just had to go on the safari ride. It'll still be there the next time we go, I'm sure, and little guy can enjoy it with us!

I met Cinderella instead of riding Big Thunder Mountain. She was super pumped about my "future Prince Charming!"

I enjoyed some sweet treats from Gaston's Tavern while my family rode Seven Dwarfs Mine Train... I will surely be dedicating an entry to food soon. : )

10) Shopping! It was really fun to shop for Baby Z even though I didn't buy everything I thought was cute. (I'd be broke if I did.) Our nursery is Finding Nemo themed, and I found a really cute print of Nemo and Marlin in the Art of Animation store that we are going to frame and hang up in the nursery. I also got a bedtime story book. We got little ears embroidered for our little guy (yes, we picked a name finally! No, I'm not revealing it here lol) and I got a Christmas ornament for his first Christmas. 

This onesie was super cute, and my Star Wars-obsessed brother and BFF C. totally approved. There was also an adult T-shirt with the same slogan and I considered getting matching outfits, LOL. However, I ended up passing on them both and instead got a big fluffy hooded sweatshirt for me, because some of those evenings were CHILLY. 

All in all, it was a really wonderful trip and I don't regret it for a second. It was certainly the easiest trip we are going to take with a baby! haha

More posts will come soon about food and the overall trip... just not with all the pregnant annotations included. : ) I figured I kind of get sick of talking about it all the time, so people would be sick of hearing/reading about it all the time too. No worries!

In the meantime, take it easy and keep on keeping on : )