As previously posted, I do love a preggers doctors appointment.  Any insight into how Little Miss Brickner is progressing is MORE than welcomed & even the most standard of appointments (tummy check & a heartbeat monitor) tend to brighten my day.  Well – now that we are into the 38th week of pregnancy, my monthly appointments have turned into weekly ones.  And with the craziness of a holiday week, my doctor had the day off for my Friday appt., so that quickly turned into a visit back on Monday. (No complaints here … )
On Friday, I had my first non-stress test, to make sure that our baby girl wasn’t in any distress in my tummy.  Although a little sleepy, she passed the test and we were able to enjoy what could have been our last weekend without child with no worries.  I must admit that Monday’s appointment was the one I was more anxious for, as thoughts that I could finally be dilated or that my doctor would mention an “induction” danced in my pregnancy brain.  Unfortunately, no dilation yet and we were ordered to patiently wait another week for our next visit. 
So that is what just we will do.  Wait, wait and wait some more.  I am trying to enjoy my last couple of weeks with lots of sleep and relaxation, but I just can’t help longing for the moment I get to meet my baby girl.   Official countdown is 13 days until due date.  Come onnnnn baby girl! 🙂

Even though the dates on my blog make it clear that I just updated on Week 36 yesterday, I had fallen behind (as a result of all that was Week 36) and therefore am already well into my 37th week of pregnancy.  Before I was pregnant, during my first trimester, and even well into my second … I didn’t think I would be that anxious for delivery at this point.  OF COURSE I knew that I would be more than ready to meet my little girl, but assumed that any of my natural fears of pregnancy and last-minute tasks that needed to be completed would help ease my immediate need for labor to begin. 
Apparently, if the last few days are any indication, I was wrong.  Ever since we made it through the final hurdle of my last shower, maternity photos, and first anniversary trip … I have felt more than ready.  And my appointment/last ultrasound this past Thursday only sealed the deal.
Thanks to my What to Expect While Expecting Book and other maternity reading gifted to me by my mother over Christmas, I knew that Week 37 marked a great milestone – that a baby born at this point would be considered full-term.  So once the ultrasound technician confirmed what I already knew, and shared that, by her calculations, she is already 6.6 lbs. – I knew I was officially ready for her to be here.  That, and the mini sneak peek at her precious face, with chubby cheeks, a button nose, and full lips.  Not that my “readiness” changes anything …
So the waiting begins.  Every twinge, cramp, and abnormal feeling I currently experience causes me to think I am in labor.  And the thought that my big belly seems to be DROPPING,  brought on by both my mother and mother-in-law, is certainly a good one.

Time is moving (although a little slower lately) and last week was the mark of my 36th week of pregnancy.  Week 36 was eventful as both my maternity pictures and second baby shower were on the schedule. 
The maternity “photo shoot” was a success (even though we haven’t seen the pictures as of yet – they FELT like they were the feel/look we were going for.)  Because my husband knows me well, he dealt with the large amount of props he had to carry around Seashore State Park with little to no complaining.  And by props, I am referring to the giant chalkboard I had him create that day, a second chalkboard wwith “Coming Soon” inscribed across the center, pink balloons, a clothesline with a few of Little Miss B.’s outfits, and one of the YAY! signs from our wedding.  It was weird to be back to a couples shoot one year after the wedding – this time for a different purpose.  We are anxious & excited to see the final result – but (obviously) not quite as much as we are to meet our daughter.
Saturday’s baby shower, hosted by my sister-in-law and niece, was the FINAL event before meeting our little lady.  As always, Kim & Abbey did not disapoint and it was the perfect theme (pink & brown) with attention to every detail.  I feel so lucky to have such special people in my life – both those who hosted and attended the event – and even luckier that my daughter will, too.  She will be born with so much love already surrounding her. 
So with both important dates behind us, as well as a short trip to Williamsburg for out first anniversary, we are more ready than ever for the arrival of our baby girl. 
Now for the waiting …

And the swelling has, too.  I clearly remember (about 3 months ago) claiming that I could not wait for the start of summer.  Thoughts of maxi dresses, tank tops & shorts, and pretty much anything other than the jeans that were making me feel like a sausage were dancing around in my pregnancy brain.
Well … today’s high was recorded at 92 degrees, and I definitely felt it.   Anyone who knows me would agree that I am normally cold-natured, even in the heat of summer in Virginia Beach … but the summer of 2012 is certainly out of the ordinary.  I am now finding myself constantly hot and with a desire to be in the least clothing possible, and a hunch tells me that is has something to do with the little girl growing inside of me (my pregnancy app. tells me that she is almost 6 pounds now … ). 
So although my walk this morning ended with rather swollen fingers and toes, my newfound freedom of summer allowed me to beat the heat with a relaxing afternoon at my grandparent’s pool … followed by a date at the nail salon for a manicure & pedicure on those same swollen extremities. 
Just what I needed for my summer day. :)

It has been TOO long since I have updated … I fully admit, but with the official END OF SCHOOL finally arriving last Friday, life has been busy. Each and every end of the school year is obviously welcomed (to say the least) and fully celebrated, but this year is definitely extra special. With my substitute plans completely done (and labeled, color-coded, and divided by day) …

It meant that my walk out the doors of Ocean Lakes High School on Friday was my last for quite a while; specifically, until at least October.   And that is a good feeling, indeed. 
Other happy feelings during Week 35?  Definitely at the forefront:  the fact that my daughter could be here in 5 weeks.  And that feels unbelievable & wonderful all at the same time.  My favorite times of the day are when I feel her kicking, moving, and turning in my tummy.  And my bump, while certainly big and getting bigger by the day … has become an integral part of my style that I have certainly embraced.  
Of course, as any pregnant women would concur, with the highs come the not-so-pleasant side effects of pregnancy.  For me lately, these include heartburn, restless leg syndrome, and a pain in my feet that seems to arrive daily.  But if that’s the worst it gets, I can certainly handle it … and more importantly, whatever else comes my way because IT WILL ALL BE WORTH IT when we see Little Miss B. very soon. 🙂