Wednesday, November 26, 2014

My Favorite [Pregnancy] Things



I feel pretty fortunate in the pregnancy department. I have a ton of friends that have had their first or second in the past year or so and my big sister recently had her second boy (and is a NICU nurse, so prenatal care is totally her thing). Advice was never far away if I had a question or a concern, and as this pregnancy thing got further and further along it seemed like more and more of my friends were becoming pregnant (or revealing their secret!). Basically, I can pick the brain of at least 10 pregnant/recently pregnant women at a given time just via my cell phone. It is kind of awesome. 

When we got married I didn’t really listen to people’s advice with wedding planning. I just kind of did my own thing and while our day was absolutely perfect, in my opinion, there were probably some valid things that people had to offer that I just wasn’t having. That has not been the case this time around. If you have pregnancy/baby advice, I am listening and probably have my phone out because I am taking notes.

 What I loved hearing the most and reading about the most on the plethora of pregnancy blogs out there are the favorite pregnancy things. Everyone is different and we are divided on some things (full belly panel vs. under belly band in maternity pants, the division is real!) but we can definitely agree that carbs are a lifeline in those first few weeks of nausea. 

So, this is my first time around, I’ve still got a few weeks left but here are my favorite pregnancy things to remember for the future or maybe to inspire another pregnant lady to try: 

1. Aveeno Baby Eczema Lotion
This one is probably very specific to me and any other sensitive skinned gals. Pre-pregnancy I was taking one Allegra and one Zyrtec a day to keep my itchies away (not allergic to anything specific, I am just a histamine producing power house) but much to my dismay Allegra was category C and Zyrtec category B in terms of medications appropriate for pregnancy. I quit both cold turkey when I was around 6 weeks and starting fighting a losing battle with my eczema everywhere. I had tried this stuff pre-pregnancy and it didn’t work, but this time around it worked so well. It would take a few days to get a flare-up under control, but after using this as an all-over moisturizer every day  (especially on my face) it has really kept things under control. The only downside (or upside, depending on your point of view) is that you will smell like oatmeal. Delicious? Yes. Does it get old? Yes. My doctor commented on my lack of stretch marks (!?) the other day, and I am wondering if being a moisturizing nazi worked in my favor in that department with this stuff and my normal Cerave regimen.

2. Old Navy Black Maternity Skinny Pants
So many people gave me maternity clothes to keep or borrow that I really  could not justify buying any of my own until I got into third trimester. Many of the pants were flare leg and a little too long for me, but I wore them anyway. Once it became boot season though, it became evident that I would need a pair of black skinny pants to get me through the fall/winter. Pickings were kind of slim at my local Old Navy, but I settled on (re: happened to find one pair in my size) the under belly band in my normal size pant. Like we know, you must try on pants at Old Navy in real life prior to purchasing… you never know what you are going to get. I love these things. Comfy like leggings, not-see-through like pants, they work with boots, flats, casual shirts, dress shirts, etc. There was a week where I actually wore them to work every single day. I am so glad I bought these, hopefully my size won’t change that much should another pregnancy be in my future. Also, it will probably be a while before I am back into my regular black skinny pants so I’ll probably be wearing these a bit post-partum, and I am totally okay with that. 

3. Luna Minis + ALDI Apple Sauces
So…. snacks. Blood sugar fluctuation is real, heartburn when hungry is real, and just sometimes you don’t feel right and then you eat something and voila! you are human again. Snacks are key. My go-to snack prior to pregnancy and even more so now are Aldi’s squeeze apple sauce pouches. They used to only come in Apple+Banana and Mixed Fruit flavors, but something magical happened and now they come in Apple+Strawberry AND Apple+Peach which are both amazing. They sell for $1.79 for 4 pouches, you cannot beat that price, although I recommend going on a Wednesday (yes, that is the day that Aldi stocks with new stuff) to get the strawberry before they all sell out. The best part is there is NO added sugar at all, just the fruit itself which makes it guilt free.

I am a sweet thing craver normally, so pregnant me is all about some sweet things. As soon as I finish a meal I am planning what sweet thing I have earned because I ate real food. Enter Luna Minis. At 90 calories and sold in a combo pack of Chocolate Covered Coconut and Peppermint Stick (which really happen to be my two favorite Luna flavors) sweet prayers are answered. I tend to limit one/two a day, but it satisfies the sweet craving with a hit of iron, folic acid and other good-for-you minerals and not the caloric intake of a full Luna bar. I believe these are also gluten free now, officially. If you're into that sort of thing. 

4. Ovia App
The irony is, I was looking at this app initially because it talked to the Fit Bit and I really wanted to stay active during my pregnancy. The ironic part is that my Fit Bit has probably not been charged since morning sickness hit me about 8 weeks in to this thing so I haven’t really used that part of it much. It does, however, have the weekly fruit/veggie comparisons that we all know and love (and sometimes I have to Google the fruit/veggie), this super cute thing that shows the approximate size of your baby’s hand each week (I recently Instagrammed 8 weeks vs. 34 weeks) and it has a kick counter built in as well as a contraction timer. The possibilities are endless as to what you can track in there (currently tracking weight, blood pressure, fetal kick counts, water intake and any other note-worthy symptoms). I also have Baby Center on my phone as well, just to read the weekly updates and The Bump for their fun weekly little video. The Ovia app is free on the App Store.

5. Target Maternity Jeggings +  Tanks
I just bought these maternity jeggings a few weeks ago and wish I had bought them so much sooner! They are so comfortable and are dark enough denim that I wore them to work the other day and no one noticed (or maybe they did, but just didn’t say anything since I’m pregnant). Again, they work with flats, they work with boots, they work dressed up or dressed down, and I bet they would even be comfy enough to sleep in. My only complaint is that I bought a medium because the small fit like, perfectly, and I was still anticipating growing some more and didn’t want to grow out of them before the end (this happened with my Old Navy maternity skinny jeans, the full belly band does NOT fit anymore). This has made them fall down a little when I sit down although, after a good wash & dry they shrink back up again. Now, Target's maternity tank tops. I have four of them: two white, one off-white and one black. They are perfect layered underneath a shirt (maternity or not) or doubled up by themselves with a cardigan, the possibilities are endless. Super comfy, super long, and I seriously doubt I will ever buy a regular tank again. I love them. 

And there we have it, my favorite pregnancy things. We'll see if anything pops up in the next ~5 weeks that is noteworthy! 

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