Week 19 Pregnancy Update and A Trip to the Beach

How far along? 19 Weeks

Total weight gain: After my OBGYN appointment on Monday, I have officially gained 10 lbs.

Bump Alert: He’s definitely there!

19 Weeks

It’s hard to tell because the little string/tie is hanging down over the “empty” space above my bump, making it appear that the bump is smaller than it is.  Trust me when I say, he’s definitely popping out!

Maternity clothes? I am still only wearing maternity bottoms, but at the rate of Baby Bump Growth (BBG) I will be in the tops in no time!  I have started wearing my husband’s old t-shirts to workout in because my tighter shirts are no longer comfortable to do all that moving around in.

Stretch marks? Still moisturizing and still luckily stretch mark-free!

Sleep: 8-9 hours per weeknight and the occasional weekend nap.  This past weekend called for one on both Saturday and Sunday.

Workouts: Because of the increased fatigue this week, I have taken a few days off of walking and exercising.  It made all the difference in the world!  I have gained back my energy and was back in my normal routine today.

Best moment this week: It wasn’t the best week in terms of how I felt, but I did feel a lot more movement from our little boy.  He’s either practicing his soccer kicking or shadow boxing, according to his daddy of course.

Miss anything? The energy I had for the past several weeks, but I think I’ve figured out my nutritional/exercise ratio to ensure that I keep on feeling good.

Food cravings: WATER!!!  I’ve been a very thirsty girl lately!  If I get tired of water, I am easily found with a glass of orange juice in my hand.

Labour signs: No!

Symptoms: Extreme fatigue!

Belly button in or out? Still an innie despite the belly growth.

Wedding rings on or off: On.

Baby Stuff: Nothing new to report here.  I did get a thoughtful gift from some of my students that I shared with you yesterday during my Photo Dump posting.

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Happy or moody most of the time: Happy and tired

Looking forward to: seeing my sister and niece over Thanksgiving.  I know that’s several weeks away, but after a wonderful and uplifting FaceTime session with them this morning, I am very excited about seeing them, in person, soon.

Reflections:  Ever since the movement in my belly has increased to a noticeable cadence, and finding out that we’re having a boy, I cannot help but feel that this little boy has become more and more real.  I now refer to my baby bump as “my son” and myself as “his mom.”  I’ve tried out some of the optional names we are considering and like the way that they feel coming out of my mouth.  I look at my husband, our parents, our extended family in a new light.  They aren’t simply my husband, parents, siblings anymore; they are my son’s father, grandparents, and aunts.  The memories that I have of my own grandfather, one of the most important men during my formative years, my laughs and giggles with my aunts and uncles while growing up, they fill my heart with love because those are some of the same memories that will be created and will complete my son’s childhood.


Yesterday morning, my mom and I took a long walk on the beach at sunrise.  It was such a wonderful experience that when I noticed the gorgeous beginnings of Sunday morning emerging over the rooftops in our neighborhood, I rushed to get my husband and Sophie up and ready to have a repeat experience.

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We weren’t disappointed
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Sophie has been to the beach before, but she wasn’t quite so sure about the waves today.

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I think the words that best describe her sentiments about early morning salt water are “tolerate” and “avoidance.”

Beach Sophie 1

 

Photo Dump

We all have random photos in our cell phones, which can bring back hilarious and quizzical memories.  I finally took the time – AKA remembered – to sync my phone to my computer and found several such photos.  What better way to walk down memory lane than to do so with you??

His and Her Pregnancy Halloween Costumes

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We were invited to a Halloween party this weekend, and I decided to take advantage of my “delicate condition” and make a custom costume.

Here is the inspiration for our costumes:

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Sadly, the party was rescheduled due to the flu epidemic running rampant throughout the host’s household, but at least we are prepared for the 31st.

Gifts from Students

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There’s no denying that I have the best students in the world.  They also know the quickest way to my heart, after studying and completing their homework.  This was a care package for the Mister and myself.  I was more than happy to share with the rest of the class, but kept the Reese’s and soda for myself.

Halloween Social Costume

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Remember those sweet and awesome students I mentioned?  There was a middle school Halloween costume social on Friday, and a few of my high schoolers volunteered to help.  This is one of their very creative, yet creepy costumes.

Healthy Eating Inspiration

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I’ve been trying to eat as healthy as possible, but any pregnant woman will tell you that between your cravings, tiredness, and desire to make life as easy as possible, sometimes that just doesn’t happen.  I’ve tried to read as much as possible about the best foods that are richest in vitamins for pregnant women, but sometimes a visual reminder is better.  I’ve started taking pictures of my meals to remind me to make the best choices for my baby and myself.

Blogging in the Classroom with Feedly

Good morning!

The first week of the new school year is in the books, and I have to say that every year has gotten better and more comfortable for me asa teacher.  With this comfort comes great responsibility (hello, I sound like Uncle Ben there).

The responsibility is that you do not become stale as an educator.  Once your curriculum is in place, you feel secure in your classroom management skills, it’s time to start adding in some “out of the box” strategies and lessons.  For me, that is going back to something I did two years ago in a Creative Writing course and during my first attempt at a Project Genius Hour: classroom blogging.

I had my students create their own WordPress accounts and design a personalized blog.

In Creative Writing, they used it for their weekly postings about a given writing prompt or subject that we had been talking about in class; for Genius Hour, they posted their progress in researching their topics and other specific prompts that had to do with the process of being given 20% of the school week to focus on a subject matter that meant something more to them than just another grade.  If you want to know more about Project Genius Hour or 20% Time Projects, please see the following link:

My Own Genius Hour and follow @JoyKirr on Twitter.

I have decided to go back to classroom blogging for several reasons:

  • It gives students a voice and an outlet to be expressive
  • It’s important to address the ever-growing technological aspects of classroom writing
  • It gives students ownership over their writing
  • #GoGreen and save a few thousand sheets of paper
  • It creates an online archive/portfolio of their writing
  • Simplicity in checking their work

Let me address the simplicity point.  Some may say that if I have students email me an attachment or link to a GoogleDoc, won’t it be easier for me to have all the essays/poems/narratives/etc all in one place because I can save them to a folder on a flash drive or my desktop?  True.  You can do that.  However, there is an even simpler way to do this and that is through the use of a fantastic (and free) website: Feedly.

I started using this website that allows users to collect all the websites for blogs they read all in one dashboard.  You are able to sort the different blogs into categories and the most currently published blogs are added and highlighted for your benefit.  It saves so much time as opposed to visiting each one or receiving an email that notifies you of a new post.

 

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A listing of the categories that you customize. The number to the right of each title tells you how many new, unread posts are left to read.

 

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Here you can see all the specific blogs that I read that are organized into categories.

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This view allows all the newest blogs, regardless of category, to appear at the top of the page. It even tells you how long ago it was posted.

So how does Feedly help in classroom blogging:

  1. Once each student has created and shared their blog’s website address with you, you then create categories based on class period.  When a new blog entry has been published, it will be indicated for you in both the side bar and on the “All” view.
  2. It comes with a time and date stamp.  You will know exactly when a student has published his or her required blog and if it’s done on time.
  3. It’s all organized for you!  You don’t have to hunt and scavenger through the internet to 125 different URLs; they’re all listed in one amazing dashboard.
  4. In addition to all the blog entries being in one place, so  are all the students’ entries.  Because it’s done on WordPress and Feedly, you don’t have to spend wasted time searching through old emails or worry that the document got deleted.
  5. I often would forget to bring my flash drives home, so there would go a whole night/weekend of grading.  With Feedly, it’s all online and I can access it everywhere.

Question of the Day:  If you use blogging in your classroom, what other helpful tips do you have for supporting your students or making life easier for the teacher who must grade and manage them?