what NOT to say to a pregnant woman

As if pregnant women are not hormonal enough, it never helps when people, strangers at that, make remarks that leave you wanting to punch them in their face scratching your head.  Woah, back up, where is this post coming from you are probably wondering.  No, no, no I’m not pregnant. LOL.  I have several friends who are pregnant right now and I’ve been hearing them talk about the ridiculous remarks that have been made all throughout their pregnancy.

So I thought it would be fun to do a lighthearted post collecting all the crude things that have been said to beautiful pregnant ladies all over the place.  I asked a wonderful group of mommas to share their stories and I couldn’t stop laughing as I read them all!  Get your coffee (or tea or adult beverage), sit down, and prepare yourself for some ridiculousness!  This is gonna be good!

what not to say to a pregnant woman

note: these are real comments said by real idiots people to real pregnant women. their permission has been given to share these stories on the blog.

what NOT to say to a pregnant woman and other ridiculous comments

  • “Wow, your face looks fat!!! You must be retaining water!”
  • I had an Italian coworker tell me that, “In Italy, they say that when you are having a girl she steals all your beauty from you while you are pregnant…. I definitely think you are having a girl.”
  • “Are you sure there’s just one in there? You look like there’s at least two.”
  • I hated when people said that I didn’t look that pregnant… I knew how much weight I had gained and how big I looked and I took it to mean that they saw me that way regularly.
  • “You’re not going to use pain meds? Are you trying to be a hero?”
  • When I was waiting for the train one day, a man asked me how far along I was. I said “34 weeks”. He responds “Oh! My wife went into labor at 34 weeks and it was so terrible because they had to keep her in the hospital trying to keep the baby in and then the baby still came and she had to stay in the NICU, etc etc etc… So hopefully that doesnt happen to you.” Ummmm, thanks? –Stephanie
  • “How cute is your pregnancy waddle?”
  • Saying, “You’ll never make it” to your due date. I’m very petite and make normal size babies, so I appear larger than most. People need to shut up and stop assuming I’m not going to make it, having twins, or other ridiculous “observations.”
  • My best friend was seven months pregnant at my wedding and looked gorgeous. One of my mom’s cousins was chatting with her and mentioned her daughter-in-law was expecting, as well. Apparently she thought she’s big, so the cousin told her, “She should see you!!” I was mortified when I found out many months later.
  • I was told I was too old to be pregnant. I was 33.

st-louis-maternity-photographer-pregnant

  • “Seriously, you’re not going to find out the gender?  Don’t you want to know what the baby name will be?”  I always wanted to reply, “It doesn’t matter because we will love the baby either way.
  • “Where is the baby hiding? Are you sure there is one in there?”
  • “You’re due in December? Wow, we thought October!” (when I announced my pregnancy to my coworkers).
  • Literally having one person tell me “you’re about to pop!” and another state, “you’re so small; you don’t even look pregnant” in the SAME week. –Catherine
  • About 7-8 months in, “Are you feeling ok? You’ve lost your glow.”
  • “If you’re going to have your baby in a birthing center and insist on going all natural, why don’t you just have it in the middle of a field? You’re being ridiculous.”
  • A previous co-worker actually said to me, “You know your going to have to lose all that weight?” As I was eating a thin mint….
  • When I was pregnant with my fourth, people were always telling me I shouldn’t have more kids or how crazy we were to have four kids five and under. I was also asked if we were done – like it’s anyone’s business!!!!
  • An older woman asked if I was having twins. Nope, just a 10lber, ugh. –Kelly
  • “How are you not going to find out the gender…? You better not expect any gifts from anyone because no one is going to know how to shop for you.”
  • I had older women come up to me in the grocery store and tell me their awful birth stories while pregnant with my first. It happened several times with different women. I was already scared enough of child-birth!
  • “Awww yeah, I love watching you waddle all over,” when I was 8 months pregnant and had no ankles.
  • Someone told me I was going to hurt the baby by teaching so many fitness classes. Haha. NOPE. –Annette, fitness instructor
  • “Can you not color your hair when you’re pregnant?” once my gray was showing.

32 weeks pregnant

  • Literally any amount of judgey advice about how your birth should go… anywhere from “I did it all-natural, baby! I was super woman!” to “How stupid to feel pain if you don’t have to.” It’s sort of like religion. You don’t know what someone’s personal story is, so don’t walk up to them and preach your own gospel.
  • On my baby moon with baby #1 the (female) valet at a restaurant asked me if I knew what I was having. I said no, then she said, “Oh, let me guess, I’m really good at this!” She proceeded to look me up and down, then asked me, “Are your hips and butt normally big, or have they just gotten bigger since you got pregnant?” I guess my silent, horrified, mouth open gaze didn’t give her a clue to her rudeness, because then she announced, “It’s a boy! Congrats, mama!” And of course it *was* a boy and I never forgot that apparently that was obvious to anyone checking out my butt!! –Carly
  • “Are you planning on having anymore?” while I was pregnant with my second and since we were having another little boy (because once people figure out you’re pregnant they have to know the gender). They then ask the above question. “So are planning on trying for a girl then?” Uh I’m still pregnant and this child isn’t insignificant thank you very much. And also I’ll make sure to call you, random stranger in the checkout line, to let you know what my husband and I decide..
  • “Oh you’re so big! You must be ready to go any day!” Said to me at 37 weeks…I actually felt great and participated in a workout class that same day! –Maria
  • I had a girl at work tell me that we should do jumping jacks to, “Get that baby out of there!” If only it were that easy! And I don’t want the baby out yet, I still have three weeks!
  • I was getting my bike off of my bike rack and I had a woman come up to me and ask me if I knew what I was having (I did) and she says, “Wait don’t tell me, let me guess!” Walks a circle around me as if she were checking me out and says, “You’re having a boy!” No ma’am they say it’s a girl… I guess we’ll see. So awkward.
  • I was at my work gym and someone asked, “Should you be working out? I don’t think you should be working out in your condition.” I almost died with laughter. I told him, “I don’t remember you being my doctor, but thank you for your concern.” And then I went on to continue my weights with a machine. I was only one week from my due date, but my doctor was fully behind it. If only they could have seen me playing volleyball, doing zumba, and TRX. –Elizabeth

studio maternity pregnant itzlinz

all photos by stephanie cotta photography

While I know these comments and stories weren’t actually funny when they happened, I’m glad we’re all able to laugh at them now.  Moral of the story?  The ONLY thing you should say to a pregnant momma is, “YOU ARE BEAUTIFUL!”

Do you have any ridiculous comments or stories to share?

Tips for Recovering from a C-Section

After my “healthy pregnancy for healthy birth and healthy baby” post and sharing several mommas’ birth stories, one kind reader asked about ladies who have c-sections and the recovery that follows.  Since I’m unable to speak to that, I asked my friend Sarah to guest post on Tips for Recovering from a C-Section.  Sarah is a fellow FitFluential Ambassador, rock star twin momma, and amazing woman who understands how to balance a healthy, busy life!

tips for recovering from a c-section

Good morning!  I’m Sarah from Creating Better Tomorrow and I’m so happy to take over Linz’s blog for the day and share some insight into my recovery from a C-Section.   My husband and I welcomed twins (yes, two little bundles of joy!), Micah and Jonah, into our family on August 6, 2014 via a scheduled c-section.

Before we get going with some tips on recovery, let me say these are just my own tid bits I am, by no stretch of the imagination, a doctor or medical professional.  Also, please know that I was EXTREMELY lucky and blessed with a super surgery and fast recovery, BUT remember every surgery is major surgery and every recovery is individual.  On that note, here are some things I think you might find helpful if you are recovering from a c-section.

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Listen to your body – no matter how many tips you read here, in books, hear from friends on recovery, this surgery was your own surgery…and though it sounds easy, this is definitely my #1 tip to recovery.  You know what your body is telling you, don’t forget in the excitement of the new baby to listen to it!

Going to the bathroom – yep, I’m going there… I had a bit of warning on this (and, honestly, I had no trouble in this area, but I am the exception) but many do not.  Going #2 after surgery won’t be fun.  Take the stool softeners they give you and I would recommend stocking up on some to have at home when you arrive with the babies.  Don’t get laxatives; stool softeners do the trick.  And be prepared for the nurses to ask you every visit if you’ve gone #1 or #2, how often, if it hurt, and how much. 🙂  Modesty out the window here, gals!

Get up and move as soon as you can BUT listen to your body (see first tip!).  Walking helps to get the blood flowing so your body can get healing, but know that you’ll just want to take short trips ALWAYS with someone.  I started just walking around my room.

DRINK LOTS OF WATER after surgery.  I’d even recommend having someone remind you to keep drinking while in the hospital and at home because, trust me, you will be so busy and tired you might easily forget! (My hubby was like a constant water boy, but it kept him occupied and made him feel like he was helping me even when he didn’t know what to do.)

Eat nutritious foods when you are hungry, don’t worry about calories or weight loss – focus on whole foods that nourish your body as it heals.

Welcome help from friends, family, neighbors, anyone!  Whether you have one baby, two babies, more, and whether it is via c-section or naturally – welcome help!  You need to focus on recovering and the babies.  So see that tip above about eating nutritious foods?  Try to organize folks beforehand (or you could do some freezer meals too, we did both) to bring you food and don’t be afraid to mention you prefer healthy, wholesome foods. 🙂

Wear a belly binder – I bought my own belly binder before surgery to take with us but I also asked for one at the hospital.  I can’t imagine not having them both.  I wore one as soon as I could get out of bed, and then for the next couple of weeks post-surgery.  It helps to keep your stomach held in where the stitches might feel as though they are ripping open (they aren’t, I promise!).  This is the #1 c-section item I’d tell any friend to buy!!!  And make SURE when you go to sneeze you put a pillow on incision area and hold firmly; it will help immensely, but again, wear that belly binder!!

Skin to skin as soon as possible with mom and dad.  Though I know some hospitals delay skin to skin and nursing with c-sections, ours did not by more than 30 minutes.  And even during that time, Daniel had the boys on his chest.  I found when I was overwhelmed at any point during recovery (heck even now on rough days) laying the boys on my bare chest was the best thing for us al.  It truly does wonders, God has this amazing plan where those babies just know you from your skin, scent, temperature…so get that baby on you or daddy as soon as possible – it will help with mental, emotional, and physical recovery for you and baby!

csection2

Pray when you don’t know what else to do!  My recovery physically was quite easy and quick but my recovery mentally and emotionally at times was a bit tougher, and as with anything when I don’t know what to do I pray.  I truly believe that prayer heals…so I’ll end with this final tip – pray!

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I have gathered a few other bloggers posts on c-section births and what to share those with you too for some more insight into recovery and postpartum life:

Pop on over to Creating Better Tomorrow where you can find much more about our journey to pregnancy and infertility, journey throughout pregnancy, and much much more.  And feel free to send me any questions via email creatingbettertomorrow@gmail.com.

Big thanks to Sarah for sharing her knowledge and experience with us! She just wrote a Preparing For A C-Section post that some of you pretty ladies may be interested in.

Mommas who have had a C-Section: anything else you would add to this list? Do you have any other questions?

 

healthy pregnancy for healthy birth and healthy baby

The other day my dad sent me this article: Diet and Exercise Advice During Pregnancy Yields Better Birth Outcomes.  (Published by Pharmacy Times, so it’s definitely a reputable source!)  I was happy to read it because it confirmed what I thought to be true and what I believed throughout my pregnancy.

studio maternity pregnant itzlinz

The article supports the idea that “weight gain in pregnancy is not an ideal measure of pregnancy health.”  I love this for several reasons.  First, I never think that the scale is a good indicator of anything.  It’s more about how you feel, even when you’re pregnant.  I never got too hung up on numbers during pregnancy because I felt good and I consistently got good reports from my doctor.  I did gain the average thirty pounds during my pregnancy.  I know I “looked small” to some, but it doesn’t matter.  You know what mattered?  That I ate fairly healthy and got a moderate amount of exercise throughout.  That’s what counts!

The study reports that eating healthier and increased physical activity during pregnancy were “directly associated with significant improvements in outcomes for babies.”  They’re not talking about crazy hard workouts either!  It states 15 – 20 minutes of brisk walking most days of the week yields positive benefits.  If you followed my pregnancy journey, then you know that’s what the majority of my workouts entailed!  Occasionally I went swimming or lifted light weights, but from the beginning until the very end, I was walking.

These findings also suggest that healthier choices in terms of eating and exercise resulted in shorter hospital stays, as well.  I know a lot of ladies who have given birth, and most of the ones who practiced healthy habits during their pregnancy had easier labors (if there is such a thing!) and delivered healthy babies.

william first look 1

Disclaimer:  I do recognize that unpredictable complications occur in all types of women, even those who are healthy.  My point is that there is evidence of living a healthy lifestyle throughout pregnancy can (but does not guarantee…. nothing does) help with delivering a healthy baby!

Here is William’s birth story: the before and the during.  I had an absolutely wonderful delivery, and do attribute a lot of it to my healthy choices.  But don’t just take it from me.  I have many other bloggers who are living examples of strong, healthy women and mommas willing to share their stories, tips, and thoughts with you!

Birth Stories:

Fitness During Pregnancy:

Other Pregnancy Topics:

William Jack

photos by Stephanie Cotta Photography

If you are thinking about or trying to get pregnant, or if you are pregnant, I would strongly encourage you to check out the above posts, make [mostly] healthy choices in regards to food, and incorporate some type of activity in your daily life!  YOU CAN DO IT!  There are so many benefits, science proves it, and there’s evidence in all the lovely ladies’ stories!

*I am not a doctor.  Always consult your doctor before making any changes.

Do you consider yourself healthy in terms of food and fitness?  Moms: do you feel like a healthy pregnancy resulted in a healthy birth and a healthy baby? Please share your story!

The Loss Nobody Talks About – Miscarriage (guest post)

Greetings ITZ LINZ readers…. Itz Amy, a friend and of fellow teacher at Lindsay’s school.   I have the pleasure of being a guest blogger on Lindsay’s blog!

So, let’s cut to the chase!  Why did Lindsay ask me to contribute to the blog???

The basic reason is that I also struggled with infertility.  A lot of my struggle overlapped with Lindsay’s – although we didn’t know about each other’s battle until Lindsay blogged about infertility on her post, Infertility Sux.

I identified with SO much of what Lindsay was frustrated with.  Babies were everywhere, and it seemed like a new pregnancy was being broadcast to me every couple of days.  It was much easier to see and feel envious of others having children than to consider people who might be in my same situation – like Lindsay.  Everyone seems to advertise their blessings in life (MARRIAGE, PREGNANCY, BABIES BABIES BABIES!), but itz much harder for people to share their struggles.  There’s not too many loneliness, depression, miscarriage, broken relationships, and infertility posts on Facebook!  So that means that if you are going through one of these rarely-broadcasted problems, you feel more isolated than ever.

That’s one reason that I was so thankful to Lindsay for sharing about her struggle with infertility!  I had no idea that she was going through it.  It helped to know that a friend knew what I was going through.  And that’s also why Lindsay and I wanted to share my story, in case one of you readers are dealing with the same type of struggle.

amym

My hope is that you:

  1. know that others have gone through the often heartbreaking journey of trying to have children.
  2. feel more brave about sharing what you are going through with others.
  3. maybe even get some ideas for what could help you conceive – obviously every woman is different!

The First Few Months

On my birthday, March 17, 2012, my much-more-practical husband, Tyler, *finally* agreed that it was time to get off birth control and start our family!  YES!!!!  The next morning, my excited, ignorant self printed off the next three calendar months to start family planning, thinking that, of course, we wouldn’t need anymore time than that!

Weeeeelllllllll….  After the first few months, I was bummed with the negative results, but still optimistic.  Then, the next few months, I was disappointed, but Tyler and I decided we just needed to try harder or more often.  We justified our lack of success with the statistics. “We don’t need to worry, half of couples statistically aren’t pregnant by this point.”  “No big deal, a full fifth of couples aren’t pregnant by this point!” etc.)  Throughout the whole process, my cycle started getting longer…  and longer (each time, exciting me because I was ‘late!’)….  and my period started getting lighter… and lighter.  After about nine months, my period stopped coming all together – but still no positive result.

Seeing My OBGYN

My OBGYN was at a loss as to why my period had disappeared.  I hadn’t taken up marathon running, or any other activity that would cause my period to wane, I hadn’t gained or lost a lot of weight, and I was a couple of decades short from menopausal age.  I had an internal ultrasound of my ovaries which showed everything looked normal.  Eventually, I was prescribed a low dosage of Clomid, which helps women ovulate.  Although my doctor didn’t know why, she knew that the disappearance of my period, combined with the months of unsuccessful trying, were signs that I might not be ovulating.

Well What Do You Know!

More than year after starting our baby-making journey, we got a positive pregnancy test!  The Clomid worked!  The excitement was like nothing I had ever experienced!  Within a couple of weeks, we were making shirts to tell our parents, and a few weeks later, beginning to tell close friends about BunBun, our baby.  Although I had been having some light spotting for weeks, summer came around and school let out, and I was getting more and more confident that the baby struggle was finally over!

Worst Day Ever

On Wednesday, May 29th, 2013, just before BunBun was 7 weeks along, we had a second weekly ultrasound to make sure everything was going okay due to this spotting issue. We also wanted to decide whether we could/should go to Mexico that Sunday, a trip we had booked before we knew we would get pregnant.  We got to hear BunBun’s heartbeat, which was awesome!  The doctor said the heartbeat was lower than they would like, but that they were ‘cautiously optimistic’, and even gave us the go-ahead to pack our bags and go to Mexico.  Ole!  That night we told a couple more friends the great news.

I had a hard time falling asleep that night, and even gave up trying to doze off after a couple of hours, heading into the office to play a computer game until I got tired and knew I could fall asleep.  That never happened.  Instead, I started feeling some light cramping, followed by stronger cramping, and then followed by even stronger cramping.  After about an hour of this increasing pain, I knew I had to wake up Tyler, sleeping in our room for work the next morning.

About 1:45 AM, Tyler called my mom, a former nurse, on my request, wondering if we should go to the hospital.  Before I could hear her answer, I knew that we should.  The cramping had only gotten worse, and I found myself pacing back and forth in our room, feeling very similar to how my friend had described early labor from her daughter’s birth a few months before.  Although I know it sounds crazy, I still mostly believed everything would be okay.  Maybe this was because I didn’t know many women that had had miscarriages (that I knew of).

I don’t want to go into much detail about what happened at the hospital, other than to say it was horrible – the worst hours of my life.  Over a year later, a specific memory of the doctor or one of the nurses talking still pops into my head at least once a week.  There was lots of waiting, emotions, and sobbing.  I know that there was physical pain, too, but honestly all I remember was the emotional heartbreak.   And although it was incredibly obvious that I was having a miscarriage, I was somehow still mostly in denial.  It just couldn’t be true.  I didn’t want to believe the doctor.  And I kept clinging onto any possible thread of hope that a horrible mistake had been made and everything would be okay.  Around 8 AM, about six hours after arriving at the hospital, Tyler and I went home, and then quickly back to my OBGYN’s office among all the pregnant women to confirm what I should have known – BunBun had died.

Itz the loss nobody talks about – miscarriage.

The next couple of days we stayed mostly in, except for a ‘D and C’ in-patient surgery to clear out left over tissue.  At home, we cried, slept, and ate.  The surgery also meant that the next few days would be less physically painful, which would allow us to still travel to Mexico on Sunday.  At first, we thought this was out of the question; how could we vacation right after our child had just died?!  But my doctor recommended it as a way for us to get away and spend time together.  We went, and I’m glad we did – it was good to remove ourselves from our normal environment.

amym1 (2)

Rough Months Ahead

After the miscarriage, I was a wreck.  I got a lot of support from friends and family that knew what happened, for which I am eternally grateful.  I also had a lot of people that didn’t know how to handle the situation at all, for which was hurtful, but also I can’t hold grudges against.  I know that I have either ignored, or poorly handled others’ grief in the past, and while I try to do a better job of this now, I’m sure that I will do a poor job again.  *As a note, if someone you know goes through a miscarriage, don’t bring it up to them in public, and don’t ignore it, especially if they are the one telling you about it.  The kindest response I got were people that took the time to show that they were thinking of me – making us a meal, buying me flowers or a gift, or sending a card.

For the first few weeks after, I thought I wanted to either take a break or give up on trying to conceive a baby again.  But sometime in July that longing to be a mom came back and I grew more optimistic that conception would happen quickly; after all, the Clomid worked the first round.  Surely we would get pregnant again right away, hopefully the baby would be healthy, and we would be holding a little one in our arms by springtime.  Again, I printed off calendars, this time only two months worth; again, thinking there was no way we would need more than that!

The long, sad, summer past and still no positive.  In fact, the dosage of Clomid that got me pregnant right away the first time was no longer seeming to work.  Again, my periods were disappearing.  My OBGYN would do blood work, and then double my dosage for the following month.  By fall, I was on triple my original dosage, with strong hot flashes side effects, and still no sign of ovulating.  My optimism on a quick pregnancy was once again waning.  I was starting to feel hopeless.  It had taken a year to get pregnant once, with heartbreaking results.  What if it took another year to get pregnant again, only to have the same outcome?  I didn’t think that I could handle that.  Although I knew logically that BunBun’s miscarriage wasn’t my fault, I was beginning to feel like I had had my one-and-only chance at conceiving a baby, and that I blew it somehow.

It was around this time that I read Lindsay’s post and learned that she, too, was dealing with infertility.  We were able to talk about it a couple of times, and our conversations, along with another friend who suffered through an ectopic pregnancy and was taking a long time to conceive, were helping me to feel not as alone.  Another friend who had gone through a miscarriage and received counseling for her grief encouraged me to start meeting with someone.  I put counseling off until the holidays came around (and wish I had started sooner), but her encouragement helped me feel like my feelings of grief and growing feelings of bitterness were validated.

…to be continued…

This is a story worth coming back for! You won’t want to miss the ending continuation!

what you ACTUALLY need in your hospital bag when having a baby

Oh my goodness what an absolutely marvelous weekend in Ohio with my family watching my little brother get married!  We got back home last night and have several suitcases to unpack, loads of laundry to do, and a baby to love on.  So today I’m sending you to my friend Sarah’s blog at Creating A Better Tomorrow as I’m guest posting for her.  By the way, this lovely lady is currently pregnant with not one, but TWO baby boys!

When I was 35 weeks pregnant, I wrote my packing the hospital bag post.  After having baby William, I wanted to revise that list and share my commentary on what you ACTUALLY need in your hospital bag when having a baby from my experience.

what you actually need in your hospital bag when having a baby

I get real with y’all about what actually happens and what you need/want, so be prepared.  Plus, I throw in some other random tips that I found helpful or wish I had known before.  Giving birth is no easy feat, and the last thing you want to worry about is packing correctly.  Follow my list and you’ll be good to go!

william first look 1

CLICK HERE to read the post on what you ACTUALLY need in your hospital bag when having a baby.

Mommas: what would you change about what you brought to the hospital?

PinkBlush Maternity Clothes Giveaway {CLOSED}

I hope all you mommas and momma-to-be’s had a very Happy Mother’s Day! My first Mother’s Day was a special one, indeed, as I got to spend it with my two favorite guys.

mother's day

Two incredibly good looking guys, if I do say so myself!  Jonny and William definitely made the day special and it was all I could ask for.  We spent the morning with Jonny’s family and the evening with mine.  It was a busy but wonderful day, hence the lack of blog post yesterday.

My family has always had incredibly strong women starting (as far as I’ve been around) with my Great-Grandma Rose.  My grandma Mama now has taken of the leading role with my mom following in her footsteps.  My sister, a new momma compared to my mom and grandma, has already started paving her own incredible way, and this is the first year I’ve been able to join the “momma” club with those beautiful, inspirational ladies.  I’m blessed to have them in my life and learn from the very best.

steph mama mom

I aspire to be like each of them every single day as a woman, wife, friend, and momma.

We had a nice time celebrating the ladies on Jonny’s side, as well.  Though William definitely stole the show which everyone was happy about.  He’s lucky to be so loved.

adelaide nancy becca

Also, a special shout out to my wonderful dad whose birthday is today!  He played some lullabies for William on Mother’s Day and William loved it.  William was sleeping, but opened his eyes when he heard the music.

dad guitar

So just days before William’s arrival, I was sent a gorgeous maternity dress from PinkBlush.  However, since William came so soon, I wasn’t able to wear it during my pregnancy.  So, I rocked it on Mother’s Day!  I have no shame continuing to wear my maternity clothes post-baby.  Not only are they super comfortable, most of my maternity clothes were way more stylish than my regular clothes!  (Really, just because I borrowed my sister’s and friend’s maternity clothes!)  PinkBlush has the most trendy maternity clothes and I wanted (and still want) everything on their site.  The dress I wore on Mother’s Day is definitely my favorite, and I will continue to wear it even though I’m not pregnant!

pinkblush

Itz perfect as a maternity dress (obviously), but also post-baby.  The fabric is so soft, comfortable, and stretchy which makes it easy to nurse in, as well.

Their prices are very reasonable, and there’s quite a lot of variety on their site in terms of dresses, tops, bottoms, nursing, sleepwear, and accessories.  I’m only sad I didn’t discover PinkBlush’s maternity clothing earlier in my pregnancy!

PinkBlush is graciously giving away a $25 gift certificate to one lucky Itz Linz reader!  To enter, leave a blog post comment telling us what maternity clothes you would choose from PinkBlush if you won (mandatory).  Additional optional entries include:

Be sure to leave a separate comment for each additional entry.  This giveaway will be open until Monday, May 19th, 2014 at 8:00 pm CST.  The winner will be randomly selected and announced on Tuesday, May 20th.  CLOSED!

Congratulations to #80 Caroline O! Please email me so you can start your shopping at PinkBlush! 🙂

*Note: Entrants who have won a giveaway from PinkBlush in the past 6 months, or have hosted a giveaway in the past 6 months, are not eligible to win a gift card again. I was sent the dress for review purposes only.  All thoughts and opinions are my own.

Baby Shower

Here’s my baby shower post finally. Itz long overdue as baby William is obviously already here.  However, my baby shower was thrown just four short days before his arrival and I’m excited to recap it as it was such a lovely event given with so much love.

pregnant

The dress and belt I wore was from Seraphine.  They have awesome maternity clothes and I love what I wore for the shower.  Actually my sister Stephanie picked it out since she’s way more stylish than I, but like she said, it was perfect.  It was the White Lace Maternity Dress with the Yellow Leather Skinny Maternity Belt.  I love the belted look, but none of my belts fit when I was pregnant!  Obviously they wouldn’t fit around my belly, but they wouldn’t fit higher either. This yellow belt had an elastic part in the back making it fit comfortably and able to grow as I did.  Prices at Seraphine are very reasonable, as well.  Now that William is here, I’ll need to check out their nursing gear.  Pregnant mommas, definitely take a look at their maternity clothes – especially if you have a fun event like a baby shower coming up!

*I received the dress & belt for review purposes only. All thoughts & opinions are my own.

The lovely hostesses:

hosts

From left to right: my friend Diana, my Aunt Marcy, my sister Stephanie, me, my soon-to-be sister-in-law Dana, my Aunt Laura, and my friend Whitney.  Not pictured is Caren, Whitney’s mother-in-law, who is a close family friend of Jonny’s family.  She helped host and created the beautiful flower centerpieces.  Each table’s flowers were slightly different – all gorgeous!

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On each table was a martini glass filled with cashews dipped in white chocolate – amazing!  Party favors were white chocolate and dark chocolate coated Oreo’s with little baby feet stamped on top. Simple, yet elegant and delicious.

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The baby shower was held at The Women’s Exchange.  Itz an upscale shop that also has a back area for dining.  On Sundays, itz closed for private parties and is just a lovely venue.  The whole look:

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And an up-close look at the pretty tables:

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My sister made menu cards:

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Side note: St. Louis friends, the famous Women’s Exchange salad is AWESOME!

While my mom was not an official hostess of my baby shower, she sure did a lot of behind the scenes work. As always, I’m grateful for her time and effort she puts forth for me.  My mom and my grandma Mama are two of the strongest women I know. They set the bar extremely high for women in my family. I’m lucky to learn from their guidance, support, and knowledge in raising William.

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And how pretty are they both?!  Like mother, like daughter!

Stephanie and her typical pose with me while I was pregnant:

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To read the speech she delivered at my baby shower, click HERE.

Big thanks to everyone for their constant love and support. xoxo

Urban Maternity Photo Shoot

Why am I posting an Urban Maternity Photo Shoot when William Jack was born last week? Well, coincidentally, when I gave you the sneak peek on Thursday, that happened to be the last post before Baby Itz arrived! I have a few more photos I’d like to show you, so that’s precisely what I’m going to do today.

Now let me give you some background on these pictures because they are probably the most different maternity photos you’ve ever seen. My sister Stephanie Cotta Photography wanted to do something incredibly unique. So she gave me a maternity gown, put a flower halo in my hair, and we drove to the Delmar Loop area in St. Louis.

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“You never know how strong you are until being strong is the only choice you have.”

Dealing with infertility was one of the most difficult things I’ve ever had to do.  But you know what? None of it matters now that William is here.  The heartache, pain, frustration, and tears are not forgotten; instead, they are so very worth it.

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Itz funny that these pictures were taken the Sunday before William was born on Thursday. We were thinking we still had a few weeks left with that little baby in my belly.  We couldn’t be happier though that he’s here now!

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Stopping traffic. This was the photo taken in my sneak peek. Lots of you asked if it was photoshopped. NO! You see what I’m wearing. I literally pressed the cross walk button and waited for my turn to walk while Stephanie was squatting on the other side snapping away.

Was I self-conscious during these photos?  Surprisingly no.  The gown was really long, so when we were walking from location to location, I bunched it up and covered myself. Several people asked if it was my wedding day.  We laughed when my belly bump came out. Yes, people stared. People gawked. People made comments. People wanted to know what in the world we were up to. But it was all positive, I kid you not. People thought it was awesome. And that’s exactly how I felt.

Also, I’ve always trusted Stephanie. When she has a vision, itz best to go with it because of her creative eye and photography talent. When discussing this photo with others, some people called it fierce while some thought it looked out of place. We’re glad people think itz different.  Every woman is different. Every woman’s experience is different. Itz who we are and itz important to be proud of that – no matter what. That’s how I felt walking through the Loop with my belly bump and barely there gown.  I was growing a tiny human being inside of me, and regardless of what I looked like, I was darn proud of how far I’d come.

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Major thanks to Stephanie for these photos and for all of you for your constant support.

much love.

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My mom came to our house for over four hours last night helping me tackle some of the tasks on my baby to-do list.  We got a lot done, but ended late, so I don’t have a lot of time to blog because this pregnant momma needs her sleep! Instead of a full post, I’m giving you just a sneak peek of an epic maternity photo shoot that happened over the weekend in the Delmar Loop in St. Louis.

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photo by Stephanie Cotta Photography

Stay tuned. More to come.

What would you caption this photo?

36 Weeks Pregnant | To Do List to Prepare for Baby

Itz time to nest! I’m 36 weeks pregnant and today I’m making a to do list to prepare for Baby Itz because time is ticking, and lil man will be here before we know it. I had a beautiful baby shower on Sunday and the women were more than generous with gifts. Now I’ve got to get organizing and washing and all that goodness (with the help of my own amazing momma, of course!). But first things first, let’s cover the bumpdate details and then we’ll get into the specifics of what must get done.

36 weeks pregnant

Bumping right along!

Baby Itz: 36 Weeks

Baby’s size? Head of romaine lettuce.

Maternity clothes? LOVE! The white lace maternity dress I wore to my baby shower was from Seraphine. I’ve gotten a couple other dresses from different places that I’m looking forward to wearing soon, too. I’m most excited about this warm weather that we better be having during our so-called “spring.”

Stretch marks? Nope.

Sleep: Not awesome. Saturday morning I woke up at 4 am and couldn’t go back to bed. Usually I wake up frequently throughout the night, but am able to fall back asleep. I also had a really busy weekend, so I’m feeling exhausted. Hoping to get some good sleep.

Best moment this week: My baby shower! (Full recap soon to come, promise!) In case you missed it: read my sister’s heartfelt baby shower speech: The Top 10 Reasons Why I Know Lindsay is Going to Make an Amazing Mom.

Miss anything? Not really. I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again: I’m totally digging this pregnancy thing. <– SAME

Movement: Still so much movement! My belly gets lopsided at times when different parts are sticking out. Yesterday he was really under my ribs (or so it felt) and it was the first time I felt uncomfortable. I was like dude move outta there (just my ribs, not my womb)!

Food Cravings: No cravings, but I’ll be happy to eat sushi and raw cookie dough again (not together – ha).

Anything making you queasy or sick? No.

Gender: BOY BOY BOY!!!!

Labor Signs: Nope.

Symptoms: I was trying to fix a couple clasps on my shoes over the weekend, and I had some difficulty bending down to reach and see my feet! That was a first! And I may or may not had Jonny pull off a pair of tight pants the other day…

Belly Button – in or out?  I think this is the first week I can classify it as a full outtie. Check out the picture above – itz poking through!

Wedding Rings – on or off? On!

Happy or Moody? Happy!

Looking Forward To: My doctor appointment this afternoon. I’m going every week now…

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My wonderful mother has been and is always incredibly instrumental in helping me organize and prepare for whatever stage of life I’m in. Throughout my pregnancy, she been to just about every doctor appointment and has run all around town doing odds and ends. She’s spent hours at my house helping me clean out the baby’s room and begin to organize. She’s gone baby furniture shopping and registering. She and my dad came over yesterday when we were at work to hang the curtains. I know I couldn’t do it without my mom.  So, Mom, here’s our list that we’ll tackle over the next couple weeks (and I promise I’ll do some of it on my own!).

To Do List to Prepare for Baby:

  • wash, organize, and put away bedding, towels, and clothes
  • get carseats installed in my car and Jonny’s
  • clear out space in the kitchen for bottles
  • change rocking chair pillows (I bought a rocking chair, but didn’t like the pattern on the pillows, so I ordered something more neutral)
  • find a rug
  • pack a hospital bag (I haven’t made it further than making that list)
  • buy nursing bras and tanks
  • set up bassinet
  • prepare baby book
  • buy diapers and wipes (almost for that one!)
  • purchase additional essential items from registry

Well, that list doesn’t look too long, but I still feel like I have a million things to do! My breast pump is ordered and should be arriving soon, so that’s another big thing take care of. I know that list is loaded even though it looks short, but I still feel like I’m forgetting something major? Am I?

What else do I need to do before Baby Itz arrives?