Feathered Aspen

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25 weeks with baby number 3

Steamboat Springs was dreamy. Two full days of spending time with the four of us, all the gorgeous colors of fall, and even a few hours in the hot springs… We barely took any photos but stopped to snap these on the side of the road on our way out.

In some ways, this pregnancy feels like a blur, but in others, it’s in slow motion. Every day I try to lay with my hand on my belly just to feel her move, to memorize the feeling, and to start to get to know this little girl without a name. It’s a little bittersweet. Those moments are a brush with another world and something sacred. Others are spent agonizing over the sharp ache at mid-spine or feeling thankful that first trimesters are a thing of the past.


Grey morning

Lily’s photography🙂

23 weeks

Sweet sisters. The one on the left is potty trained and accident free for over a week! So impressed with her. I really can’t take any credit! 

I’ve been a bit blue this morning. Missing Joshua and feeling a bit sick and getting frustrated picking up messes and finding the patience for the whining and arguments between the two girls. It’s funny, but I have such a “girl” response to feeling blue. I look in the mirror and project all my feelings of dismay and frustration onto my appearance. This selfie was from the other morning when I was feeling the same way and tried to solve matters by doing my makeup…. I’m a weirdo, I know.

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Friday Inspo

She asked me to take this photo❤

20 wk belly

Love this photo

First day of school and such long limbs!

She’s serenading me while I’m on the toilet…

Sickly girls watching boob tube. They’re feeling a bit better here 30 minutes after Tylenol! Ha! And then it wears off, and Lily says, “mama, I thought I was better, but I’m not.”

Sickly girl nap.

Walked to a bagel breakfast this morn with Val and Twins in our pjs… Good morning!

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All about baby no 3

As you may have gathered from my last post, we’re having our third baby!  For those of you that have the RSS feed and instantly receive the blog via e-mail, it may interest you to go back and look at the captions.  I uploaded the photos through an app on my phone and then I went in and edited on the computer to add captions…  Without them you may have been wondering why I was cupping my belly!

We’re not great surprise keepers over here, so although I did not post to the blog or other social media until 20 weeks (halfway! For those of you who are less week-by-week conversant;)), most of our family and close friends knew well before.  I know that sometimes the details of baby number three aren’t met with the same enthusiasm as the blow-by-blows of baby number one, but I’m also conscious of this blog as the only baby book or family journal through which I’ve faithfully recorded milestones and family news.  And, of course, we’re just as excited over this pregnancy and the addition of a new family member as we have been each time, so with that in mind, I’ll just continue the updates!

Getting Pregnant (Too much information ;))

The gap between Lily and Lu is two years and three months, and when that window came and went with no sign of a period, we decided it might be time to wean.  I had gradually been decreasing the number of feeds with Lu, starting with night weaning in November and then dropping down to twice daily in December, but it really did take fully weaning to regain my period.  I wasn’t quite ready to wean, and it made me quite sad to do it, but I also felt like my time as a stay at home mom is limited and I’d like to get at least a year in with baby number three🙂  Lu ended up nursing 19 months, and we loved our time together (and we both still miss it!  Lu asks occasionally, the sweet girl.  Especially when she sees her little baby friends nursing).  It’s funny how different that experience was with Lily and Lu.  I nursed Lily for 21 months, regaining my period at 14 and then nursing through the whole first trimester.  I didn’t really feel ready to wean her either, but I was receiving quite a lot of advice about when I should wean before the next baby…  Who knows?  Maybe I’ll never really feel ready?  After those first two brutal months, nursing has emerged as one of the most wonderful things about this stage of parenting.  I do love it.

Finding out

Anyway.  Just like the other two girls, it didn’t take long to conceive.  I took a negative pregnancy test in March, and then I took another negative pregnancy test on April 21st, but then on April 23rd when I was cleaning the bathroom, I noticed the faintest of pink lines on the cheapie Wondfo pregnancy tests I had been using…  What?!  I immediately took another one and after five minutes, another faint line popped up.  Well, I wasn’t used to these cheapies with their faint lines and long wait times, so I piled the girls in the car and ran to Target to get a real test, which I then peeled open and took in the bathroom of Target.  And it was immediately positive.

The girls and I eagerly waited for Joshua to get home from his run, and when he did, I could barely contain my excitement showing him the tests.  Funnily enough, we both had the immediate intuition that this little one would be a boy.  I felt like I was on cloud nine for the rest of the day, just beaming and so happy.


Initially, I wanted to do things a little bit differently with this pregnancy.  For a while now, we’ve been fairly certain (Joshua is very certain; I’m fairly) that our third baby will also be our last baby.  Seeing as this was our last chance, I wanted to try a couple of things that I we hadn’t before.  I wanted to try keeping it a surprise until 13 weeks, and from the beginning, I also said I wanted to try keeping the gender a surprise until the very end.

Well.  As I said, I’m not much of a surprise keeper.  Five days after we found out, I turned thirty, and I was just bursting with my good news and feeling like it would be a fun birthday present to tell some of my family.  So I did😉  And then by six or seven weeks, I was already dying to know what the gender would be, thinking of names and bins of hand-me-downs in the attic.  So when the 20 week ultrasound rolled around, I was already a hundred percent certain that I wanted to know.  Joshua just rolled his eyes at me from the get-go, knowing me well enough that I would a) want to tell everyone and b) want to know the gender.

How everything’s been so far…

Lordy.  Though I’m just as excited to be pregnant this time around, some of the novelty – and therefore the patience – has worn off.  I’m no longer quite as zen when it comes to accepting the debilitating exhaustion and nausea that accompanies the first 13 weeks.  While this pregnancy was practically identical in terms of how I felt the first 13 weeks, there were a few differences.  The first difference was that I didn’t have to wake up at 530 am each morning and then stand in front of students, no matter how awful I was feeling.  If anything, that made things a bit easier.  But I was still absolutely worn out by midday and then again at night.  I napped almost every day with the girls (bless them for napping at the same time!), and I was asleep by 9 each night.  Like before, I was very picky when it came to food, and I felt nauseous a lot of the time.  I’m forgetting if I had any early cravings, but at the moment, I’m loving toasts with cream cheese, tomatoes, and onions, and everything veggie on the grill.  I’ve also really been wanting pho and Ethiopian.  For some reason, whenever I’m feeling nauseous it’s fruit, carbs, and sweet that goes down the easiest.  And I’ve almost completely gone off coffee.  I didn’t touch it while we were trying to conceive or during the first trimester, and I’ve had it a few times since then, but I rarely finish a cup.  I’m back to my weakling status when it comes to caffeine, and it almost always gives me a headache.  I have, however, been loving iced tea and fizzy water.

Another difference is headaches.  I’ve been getting a lot of them in the second trimester.  I’m not usually someone who gets many headaches, and while I wouldn’t say these are migraines, they contribute to me feeling tired and drained by midday.  I also think that’s why I’ve been a bit disappointed with the second trimester.  Where’s my glow?!  I’m not feeling nearly as easy-breezy as I did with the first two.

The last really unglamorous difference is chin zits.  Ew.  I’m clear at the moment, but those suckers keep popping up!  I’ve had such clear skin throughout the other pregnancies and nursing that this was a very unwelcome symptom.

My varicose veins and my swollen purple left leg is coming back.  I can’t remember when it was really full force last pregnancy, but I wouldn’t say it’s full force yet.

I feel like I started showing at around 10 weeks but it stayed about the same until 16 or 17 weeks when I started getting bigger.  Now at twenty weeks, I can still wear normal clothes (with a few exceptions) and I’m not noticeably pregnant unless I’m wearing lycra.  Haha! In which case, I definitely look pregnant🙂

I started feeling the baby move a little bit at 16 weeks.  I remember thinking that I felt Lu move at 14?!  But that can’t be right…  But maybe it is?  In our anatomy scan on Friday, we saw that I have an anterior placenta (belly side), which I’ve never had before, and sometimes that means you feel the baby move less.

The Midwives

I’ve switched my midwives this time around.  While we went to the same midwives for Lily and Lu, I loved the setting of Bierstadt’s birth at the unattached birthing center, and I’ve always wanted to try to have a water birth (which is not available with the midwives I went to before).  It’s a bit of a trek, but that’s less of a concern for me because even if this labor is half as long as my last labor, I’ll still have 8 hours🙂

The Ultrasound

I had an early ultrasound to get a due date, and per usual, I working with a five week cycle so it was later than I had expected.  January 2!

The 20 week anatomy scan was on Friday.  I love seeing the little baby up on the screen.  It occurred to me that it was a bit abstract for the girls and they might think that their newest sibling is a skeleton, but there’s just something so special about seeing the baby move and all of it’s little parts.  The tech estimated that baby was 11 oz and said that all of her organs and proportions looked wonderful.  She was already head down (like Lily and Lu were at their 20 wk scans).

We asked the tech to keep the gender a secret from us and then write it down at the end on a folded piece of paper.  She obliged, and then we gave the paper to Melanie the next day.  Neither of us looked!  We swear!

The Gender Reveal

We bought a pinata and some food for the grill, Melanie stuffed the pinata with colored confetti and treats (pink for a girl), and we had some friends and family over.  We all dressed in either pink or blue, according to our predictions.

Joshua had long since changed his mind and determined that we were having another little girl.  The two sisters have been adamant about adding to their single sex crew, and I had held onto my early intuition that we were having a little boy (although I not-so secretly wanted another girl :)).

After food, we hung the pinata.  Stacy’s family contributed to a line up of children, and all six kids took turns walloping the pinata.  I was so nervous that someone was going to get hurt, that I sort of lost track of the purpose.  When L (the oldest at 8) finally smashed open the pinata, it took me a few seconds to register the pink confetti.

When I did, I just started grinning.  I am the luckiest woman in the world to be raising girls, and I always think of that quote:  Here’s to strong women.  May we know them.  May we be them.  May we raise them.  I know there are great men in the world – my husband is one of them – but I’ve always most admired the relationships that women form, and I’m so happy to be surrounded by a pack of women!  Plus, girl names are awesome😉

So we’re having another little girl!  Three sisters!  (I’m wondering who’s the squash, the corn, and the beans ;))

We’ve not settled on a name yet, but you know me, I’m not much of a surprise keeper, so it’s likely you might hear it before the birth.



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Summer Photos

The day of Lu’s second birthday at the Denver Botanic Gardens.

Sherpa dad at Denver Botanic Gardens 6/30/2016

Snuggling my girls at the Botanic Gardens

Silly sisters cuddling on the couch

This one is actually from late March. Photo credits Brittany🙂

Another one from Brittany.  At the Audobon Center in MN.

Pretty roses in Edgewater

Most amazing photo ever.  Love this woman’s grace and poise.  Photo credit by Jonathan Bachman.

Another photo by Brittany.  Love this guy🙂

The day it was 106.  Oh man.  Soooo hot.

I’ve been coveting this linen jumpsuit.  Unfortunately, it’s like $100 and from Lithuania.

I make yummy salads, guys.

Walking to the P’s and these girls holding hands.  So sweet.

The three girls go rodeo in from the the Children’s Museum.

Another of the three girls on the gondola in front of the Children’s Museum.

These sweeties holding hands and baby wearing🙂

All the flowers for Lu’s birthday party.

A picture of the two girls at the same age side by side.  Lily on the left and Lu on the right.

Close up of Lu.  So sweet.  I miss her long hair!  At the end of July, Lily took a pair of scissors to Lu’s bangs😦  I ended up snipping off the rest and giving her a little cap.  She’s adorable, of course, but I loved putting little piggies or top knots in her hair!  And the girls’ hair takes SO LONG to grow!

Will with the twins!  Super dad🙂

Lily living it up in the mud.  #waldorfchild

Lu gives Bierstadt a hug/headlock.  Aggressive love❤.

Lily selfie in the chariot with Mama’s glasses🙂

Lu and Bierstadt.  This girl loves this little boy🙂

Pink nails🙂

Mom and I went to see Lyle Lovett at Fiddler’s Green…  Actually, we went to see Emmy Lou Harris, but she was sick!  Bummer, but still fun🙂

Another one of my salads🙂

A beautiful sight.

Anniversary night…  I’m 15 weeks here.  Oh hey!  By the way!  I’m pregnant!  Haha.  I suppose this is the first photo or announcement on the blog…

Baby butt at Lu’s 2 year check up.

My pretty dress for David’s wedding.  $7 at the thrift🙂

My dad requested a crew cut the first night of their visit.  I obliged, but felt jealous of his thick curly hair the whole time!  Yo, dad.  Where were you in the genetic pool on that one?!  On another note, the crew cut was meant to make my dad’s epic bike trip back home from CO to MN a bit easier…  It must have worked, because he finished yesterday – a couple of days early😉  Nice job, dad!

A shot of Joshua at mile 50.  This is his Never Summer 100k race.  He had a wonderful first 55 miles and then he tanked out for the last 8.  But he finished and with a 45 minute PR!

Ellison and Lu hanging out in the tent in Never Summer.  So cute!

Joshua has been working so hard on our place at Osceola!  Poor guy.  He’s had, like, one day off in the past 3 weeks.

Selfies in the car because my hair was doing good things😉

These girls playing ALL the time🙂

A Whole Foods treat.  Although I kind of messed up the cooking of the trout😦


Another day, another salad!

She’s a wonderful one.

The damages, but still cute🙂

18 weeks.

The wedding party!

Mom, David, and me.  Somebody tell my mom she looks gorgeous because she’s been second guessing herself ever since, the loon.  David looks quite dapper, I think🙂

So sweet!

Love Lily’s little leg pose here, haha.

They all look so lovely!

David and Melanie with the flower girls🙂

Melanie is lovely!  Such a wonderful woman – my bro is so lucky!

The happy couple

My hair did good things.  I documented.

More documentation of the good hair day.  People.  It doesn’t happen, but when it does, it must be documented.

Hollyhocks at night.

More nail polish.  And my fab Himalayan Salt Lamp🙂

The girls have begging to go on a run with me in the evenings.  So cute🙂

I adore Lily in her running outfit!  She’s great.  She’s been doing about a mile with me🙂

Woops.  I guess this one is a screen shot, but nice photo!

More selfies.  Red hair from Henna with Hannah😉

Could they be lovelier?!


19 weeks on the wedding day🙂

The only presentable photo of the four of us😦  Guess we’ll have to try to get another one before the holiday card comes around.

Grandma and the girls.

Lily loves pushing Lu in the stroller.

Palisade Peaches are for Lovers.


My little Puck

Eating ice cream

Sweet gals


Fish tacos.  This time I nailed the fish.

This girl is on nap strike.  It’s horrible.  Two weeks of battle.  And, of course, hand down the shirt, silly girl.