Baby, Greg & Morgan, Married Life, Thoughts


Day 3 of the Raspberry watch…

Had an appointment with Leigh today, and everything looks great! I am feeling really good. The days are going by pretty quickly, and as I get things done I keep thinking “wouldn’t have had the chance to do this if we’d had a baby last Sunday!” The instructions are to stay well-fed, well-hydrated, and well-rested until labor starts. Easy. {grin}

Decided I am not nearly miserable enough to try any drastic methods of self-induction {like castor oil}. I can at least wait until 41 weeks, and even then we’ll see. So ready to hold my baby though!! {& see if this whole nursing business is going to be as tricky as it sounds…}

Appreciate the continual encouragement from friends… I’ve had some really sweet messages and emails!

Recent conversation-
Greg {politely}: “Sweetie, there’s a knife in the dishwasher with the blade pointing up… do you know who might have put it there?”
Me {innocently}: “Probably Raspberry.”
Greg {horrified}: “You can’t blame an unborn child!


Note: so far, Raspberry has not been a Purim baby nor a Pi baby… still a chance for the Ides of March tomorrow, and after that looms the annoyingly green shadow of St. Patrick’s day {which would be totally fine, of course, because it’s my mom’s birthday}.

Baby, Greg & Morgan, Married Life, Squicciarini family


38 weeks today! I am happy to announce Raspberry Bartos is a full term baby now. She can arrive whenever… let me emphasize that, whenever… she feels ready. Basically any day now. I have started to give her little pep talks about coming out into the world.

It looks like she is going to be larger than we thought – my baby bump has grown significantly in the last 2 weeks! {Leigh measured it this past Wednesday at my appointment.} Mums came with me this time to see the birth center and meet my two wonderful midwives, Leigh and Jackie.

The little berry had her first encounter with the second amendment today… we attended a 9-hour class to get our concealed carry weapons permit. Though I don’t currently own a handgun, Greg thought we should take advantage of the opportunity to get our permits together. It was excellent, entirely due to our instructor, Joe Balich! Highly recommend his class. The only part I haven’t done yet is the actual practice {proficiency test}, because we didn’t want to scare Raspberry with gunshots. {grin}


Baby, Greg & Morgan, Married Life, Planning, Squicciarini family



“To some degree, the first pregnancy spells the end of carefree youth – very important to Americans. The maidenly figure goes gradually into eclipse, and with it goes sprightly grace. Both eclipses are temporary but very real. The woman realizes that after the baby comes there will be distinct limitations of social life and other outside pleasures. No more hopping into the car on the spur of the moment, going anywhere the heart desires and coming home at any odd hour. The same budget has to be spread thinner, and her husband’s attention, all of which has gone to her at home, will soon be going to two.”
Dr. Spock’s Baby and Child Care, by Benjamin Spock, M.D & Michael Rothenberg, M.D.
{originally published 1945}

A profound quote from Dr. Spock… surprisingly accurate! I like how he describes the loss of “maidenly figure” and “sprightly grace.” Couldn’t have chosen better words myself. {grin}

1. We have decided Raspberry will spend her first few weeks in a bassinet rather than our giant crib. This will save us space and be a LOT easier for me to use, as well as adding flexibility to our living arrangement by allowing us to move her around. The crib is safely tucked out of the way until she is ready for it.
2. Raspberry’s grandma {Mums} gave me a matching set of Vera Bradley diaper bags! There’s a smaller “purse” sized one for quick outings, and a much larger tote bag for day trips, both in the Very Berry print. Love them!! So we practiced this weekend by filling up the small bag and taking it to Bella Torah with us. {grin} I think we had everything we needed… with the obvious exception of the berry herself.
3. Speaking of which, we’re down to 6 weeks! Unbelievable how quickly she’ll be here.
4. Two important purchases need to be made in the next 6 weeks: first, a car seat; second, a washer & dryer. Both essential to living with an infant!
5. My appointments with Leigh have increased to every two weeks. I’ve gained 23 pounds so far, and recently had to get a few longer tops… even my maternity shirts were too short! Now I realize what my pregnancy books were saying about slowing down – it almost feels like I’m in slow motion. And the dreaded pregnancy waddle has arrived. {grin}


Baby, Planning, Thoughts


My second prenatal visit at Carolina Community Maternity Center {CCMC} was last Wednesday, and this is probably a good time to bring you all up to date on our decision about a care provider! We have chosen to work with a midwife at CCMC and deliver Raspberry there, B”H. After carefully evaluating all the facts, seeking guidance from family, and asking direction from G-d, we are confident this is the best option for us.

I am still getting to know Leigh {my midwife}, but so far we have had two excellent visits. She is friendly and down-to-earth in a calm, capable way… reminding me a little bit of my Aunt Tina because she is extremely level-headed and basically knows all the answers. {grin} Leigh is also impressively prompt with emails. Here is a recent exchange:

Me: Leigh, I’ve been told I should be drinking a gallon of water each day. Is this true?  That seems like a lot. Wouldn’t it depend on the size of a person? Help!

Leigh: A gallon a day!  That’s quite the overstatement!  Half a gallon a day is plenty, and that’s assuming you aren’t getting much fluid otherwise.  My advice is to carry water with you at all times and drink whenever you get thirsty.  When you drink something, try to make it water as often as possible.  Never quench your thirst with a sugary drink.  (If you want to sip on something sweet, do it after you’ve drunk water, so you’re not tempted to take too much.)  All the liquid in your diet contributes to your overall hydration, so things like fruits and veggies and soups may decrease the amount of water you need.  Of course different body sizes have different needs, and any one-size-fits-all recommendation is not going to be exact.  Listen to your body.  Don’t over-hydrate because of numbers.  Drink lots of water, but because it feels good to do so, not to meet an arbitrary level.

See? Excellent common sense. {grin}

At the visit last week, we talked about the standard glucose test for gestational diabetes and ended up deciding to skip the test because it is extremely unlikely that I have gestational diabetes. This is what I like about midwives: flexibility, not “by the book” mentality.


Baby, Bartos family, Greg & Morgan, Planning, Squicciarini family



The ultrasound experience last night was wonderful! We went to 3D Dreams in Baxter Village, Fort Mill {recommended by my midwife, Leigh Fransen}, and the two ladies there were SO friendly. They are 99% sure little Raspberry Bartos is a girl. {grin} So it turns out we have a pink berry after all.

We watched our daughter move around, stretch her arms up, open her mouth… we heard her heartbeat… it was truly amazing! To think we were seeing inside the womb – what a miracle of technology. The images were so clear it almost felt like we could reach out and touch her.

After the ultrasound we visited both our families to share the news with them {plus a bunch of pictures} and celebrate – first a stop in Fort Mill to visit Greg’s mom and sister, and then over to Matthews to see my family {including Julianna’s fiancé, who was -not surprisingly- there as well}. My sisters had come up with an idea to “toast” to the baby, using… toast! And really, nothing beats crisp toast with butter + raspberry jam and hot tea as an evening snack. {grin} They also gave us our first PINK item, a tiny bib from Life is Good!

Now –> to come up with the perfect name. Yes, we are taking suggestions. So far we have received “Josephina,” from my mom, which may have been a joke.