Plus Size Pregnancy Fashion

Today is laundry day, and I as I was hanging up a shirt, it hit me for the first time, just how much I miss my non-maternity clothes! I haven’t reached the point where I want to throw out my maternity clothes, but I def miss having a variety in my closet!

Being plus sized, and trying to be fashionable is enough of a challenge as it is. I knew, in the event that I ever got pregnant, it would be even worse.  At the very least you can find plus size clothes in almost any town, if it’s big enough for a Wal-Mart, it will have plus size clothing. The options might suck (let’s be honest, they do), but at least there is a physical place to buy something if you need it. Plus size maternity clothes? Fat chance. Prior to moving to Wyoming, I lived in an area with 500,000 people. Not a roaring metropolis, but big enough that shopping in brick and mortar stores is possible. In this area, there was one, ONE store that carried plus size maternity clothes. Motherhood Maternity. I should throw out the caveat,that prior to getting pregnant, I was on the cusp of plus-size, and non plus-size in certain stores.  Old Navy’s xxl size (straight size) was usually swimming on me, but the XL was just a little too snug.  Of the three Old Navy stores in my area, only ONE carried maternity clothes, and even then the selection was paltry.

I knew that I didnt want to spend a fortune on maternity clothes, and I knew that I was going to have to order some of them online.

Here is what I ended up purchasing:

3 pairs of maternity slacks for work

5 pairs of maternity jeans (2 that didn’t work for me past the beginning on the 2nd tri, just felt wierd around my belly, so I had to buy two more).

1 maternity skirt

2 pairs of maternity work out pants (one was legitimately maternity, the other was just two sizes up from my normal, they were huge at first, but fit now, 4 days from my due date, I call that a succcess)

2 maternity workout shirts (again these are just regular work out shirts, but two sizes bigger than my non maternity. I never thought I would get big enough to fill them out. Ha freaking ha).

3 bigger bras

3 maternity ribbed tank tops

1 maternity white tank top for layering

and about 13 maternity tops.

All told I probably spent about $600.00 on clothes. Ugh. that number frustrates me, but you essentially have to re-build your entire wardrobe!

Now, I have to disclose that my sister-in-law did give me some of her maternity clothes. She and I have different styles, and she is actually a size smaller than me, but most of the stuff she gave me fit through my second trimester, and some of the stuff fits now. She didn’t give me any bottoms though.

Here are some tips for plus size women, who are going through the hell that is maternity fashion:

  • side ruching is your friend, and is incredibly hard to find. I almost always chose my maternity tops with side ruching over those that don’t have it, because I just find them so much more flattering.
  • Full belly panels are also your friend. Mid-level panels often have a THICK band of elastic, and I found that very uncomfortable once my belly started hardening and rounding out.
  • DON’T DISCOUNT YOUR NON MATERNITY WARDROBE. I have 2 pairs of pajamas, 3 shirts, and about 6 camis that are all non maternity. And all of them still fit. Thank you clothing industry for insisting on putting spandex in everything. Once my belly dropped, the camis became too short, so I could no longer wear them with just a cardigan, but they still work well for layering, since everythign insists on being big up top (and I have big boobs! what gives!).
  • Embrace cardigans. I was never really a cardigan girl until about two years ago, but they have become a staple during pregnancy for me (as most of my pregnancy was during the winter). I was able to make my outfits go further, and have certain tops do double duty (liked the ribbed maternity tanks) since they are wearable both with and without a cardigan.
  • If you are a size 18/20 don’t ignore straight size maternity clothes. Due to the generous nature of maternity clothes, and the presence of spandex, lots of straight size XL’s might fit. I had straight size maternity clothes that either still fit, or fit up until about 36 weeks from: JCPenny, Old Navy (and their XXL’s are sometimes still too big–not in the belly!), Motherhood Maternity, and H&M.
  • Maxi dresses are your friend!!  I wore a dress on Easter, almost 37 weeks pregnant, that I got at Ross last year, when I was at my skinniest. It fit, and looked great. These would be ideal for women pregnant in the summer
  • Don’t buy something that you wouldn’t wear if it were non maternity, and you weren’t pregnant. You won’t wear it, and that will just be money down the drain!

Most importantly, don’t get frustrated, and be patient.


My bags are packed…

…I’m ready to go! It’s official at 39 weeks and 1 day pregnant, my baby to-do list is complete. Our cloth diapers arrived yesterday,I got them all washed,dried, stuffed and finally put away this morning.

Top drawer of our dresser/changing table combo. All 21 cloth diapers. Extra inserts, bibs, a few toiletry type items, and the 6 or so pieces of new born clothing we have. I am not expecting our child to fit in newborn clothes at all, and if he does, it will only he for a few days. All of his 3 month clothes are in the next drawer down.

Oh. I forgot. We have one small, tiny, minuscule thing left to do….pick a name! We are taking a list of top Nama to the hospital…and he will get a name on his birthday.

Practicing Patience

I took this picture on my walk this morning. Isn’t instagram great? 38 w6d belly!
I had a midwife appointment today. No progress to report. Literally. My weight was the same as last week, my blood pressure was the same as last week and my cervix? Yep. Same as last week. 1 cm and 50% effaced.

I have to admit…I had sort of convinced my self that I was going to be progressed further. I was disappointed when she said there had been no change. BUT it is ok. I am not overdue, and until last week I had been mentally preparing myself to go past my due date, since so many first time moms do. We talked about options, and I said I wanted to hold off on induction until medically necessary, even if that means I get super impatient, because it’s better for the baby.
The midwife also told me “you definitely do NOT have a small baby in there.” Which, I knew. My belly is measuring 2 weeks ahead, I was over 8 pounds at birth and my husband was, are you sitting down, OVER ELEVEN POUNDS.
My poor vagina.
So…my plan is to practice patience, and go for daily walks as well as practice swiveling my hips. Apparently it helps move the baby down. The goal: healthy baby. The hope? No induction!

Nursery: The Final Pics

Ok. The nursery is as done as it is going to get before the baby arrives. The only thing missing is the comfy rocker my parents will be bringing with them when the baby is born.

I will preface these pictures with the statement that this is not a picture perfect nursery, created by a designer. It’s a real person nursery captured by my iPhone. My laptop is in the shop, so real pictures aren’t an option.

Against this wall, we have the dresser/ changing table. The dresser is an IKEA Hemnes dresser. The changing pad is a Serta and the cover is from Babies r Us. The rocket decal is from Amazon. Adjacent to the dresser is a regular trash can for diapers. The wet bag for the diapers should be here on tuesday.

This is the best shot I could get of this wall. The crib sheet is from Ross and my mom made the crib skirt. Eventually I will move the stroller out of that corner. Again, the decal of the solar system is from Amazon. I am not totally sold on the placement…luckily this is the type of decal you can move.
Here is a close up.

The bassinet is a hand-me-down that I am planning on keeping adjacent to our bed at the start.

Closet. I like the doors off look, but as this is a rental, and re-hanging doors is a huge pain, we opted to keep it on.
This was made for me by my best friends mom for my shower.

And this hangs on the other side of the closet. It’s a free printable I found via pinterest.

Here is the best picture of the window wall that I could get with my iPhone. We had the bookshelf already, and for now it is the only toy/book storage we have. The curtains are from Target, and I made the rocket mobile. I plan on doing a separate post on that, but my plan is to move it about 6 inches away from the window. The baby wont have sophisticated enough eyesight to see it over the crib at first. We may move it over the crib later…but it will have to be high enough that he can’t pull on it.

Overall I am really happy with how it turned out. It is full of bright colors that babies can see and enjoy.
Now all we need is the baby!

Pregnancy: Final Two Week Must-Haves

Well, I am 38 week and 3 days pregnant, and I suppose I could “go” at anytime! I think that is the worst part of the end of pregnancy, the constant apprehension and wondering of every twinge means it’s time.

I have discovered a few things that I cannot do with out lately.

First: a pedicure. My toe nails are growing at an alarming rate, and I cannot reach them. I really do want janky feet in the delivery room, so for the first time in my life, I have been getting regular pedis. I sure once I am pushing I will not give two craps about my toes.

Second: a place to put my feet up. I am finally having some swelling in my feet and lower legs and having them elevated feels best.

Third: the black jersey skirt you see in the picture. It is Old Navy maternity and has one of those fold over waist bands. It is great for my sporadically warm climate, infinitely comfortable, an should work post-partum as well.

Fourth: green smoothies. I am feeling very apathetic about salads lately. I can’t tell if it is true food aversion, or laziness, but I can’t stand the idea of making my own salad (prepared by others…no problem). This smoothies contains: 2 cups spinach, 1 orange, 1 green apple, one banana, and a dash of ground ginger. I have also added carrots with success. Throw in a splash of water if you like more thin consistency.

I am also happy to report that every task on my pregnancy to-do list is now complete! Just hoping the cloth diapers arrive before the baby so I can get them all sorted!

Pregnancy: packing for the hospital

I started packing my hospital bag today. My plan is to take a bag for me, a bag for baby, and I haven’t made a plan for my husband!

This is what I am planning on taking to the hospital in my bag:
Sleep/nursing bra
Cheap nightgown that I can breast feed in.
Yoga capris
Nursing tank
Maternity jeans
Maternity tank and cardi
2 pairs of large cotton underwear–incase I want to ditch the hospital provided ones.
Crocs–I use these as slippers
Toiletries– travel size shampoo, conditioner, body wash. Toothpaste, toothbrush, powder, blush, brush, headband, hair tie….etc
Phone charger
Camcorder and charger
Snacks for my husband
Two cloth diapers(flats)- for anything that might come up.

In diaper bag( that is my diaper bag in the picture. It is a Dakine laptop bag that I already owned):
4 sleepers. Two newborn size, two 3 month size. A light weight and fleece one in each size–depending on weather.
3 burp rags
1 receiving blanket
Nipple cream
Nipple pads

And a you can see in the picture I will be bringing my boppy as well.
Some of the things in the diaper bag I don’t expect to use in the hospital, but thought I would put in there for the future.

What major thing am I missing?????

Pregnancy Update: 38 weeks

I totally did not mean to let a week go by with out posting! I am still pregnant…here is a quick update:

Weeks pregnant: 38
Weight gained: 38lbs
Bp at appt: 102/72
Swelling: a tiiiiny bit in my feet, but nothing that prevents me from wearing my regular shoes.
Workouts: about 3 or 4 a week. The baby has dropped, making walking harder and less comfortable
Contractions: yes! Don’t know If they are Braxton Hicks or real…but they are low and feel like period cramps.
Dilated: 1 cm!!! Hoping this bodes well for me and I can avoid induction.

I made this mobile for the baby room yesterday. I am not super crafty, so I think it turned out pretty well. We only have two things left on our baby to- do list: put up wall decals and order cloth diapers! Oh, and pack the hospital bag. But I have all of my postpartum stuff and I have planned what is going in the hospital bag. I suppose since my midwife told me this weekend is a good weekend for me to have the baby ( she is on-call) I really should pack that bag!

Living on the cheap: homemade body scrub

Well…Pinterest strikes again. The other day I saw a recipe for homemade body scrub using coconut oil and brown sugar.
Well…that sounded like the easiest DIY ever, and I already had both of the ingredients. I wrote in my stretch mark post that I have been using coconut oil as moisturizer already, so I figured why not add this to my list of reasons to love coconut oil.

Instead of making a batch to keep in a jar in the bathroom, I decided to just make enough for one shower. I didn’t measure, just messed around with the amount of sugar in the coconut oil till I thought I had the right consistency.

I started with a dollop of oil…probably a little more than a tablespoon. Then just started adding brown sugar. I used a 3 ounce beer tasting glass…perfect size. Stirred it up with the spoon and…voila!

I used it in the shower this morning after making it, and man is it awesome! A little goes a long way and my skin is so soft and moisturized! I normally have to put lotion on after a shower…but not after using this, not even on particularly dry spots like my elbows!

I always want to buy body scrubs in the store, they smell so good and leave my skin so smooth, but I can never justify the expense or how little product I get. This is the perfect solution. Plus… It’s edible!

Contracting or not?

Last night I woke up with what felt like menstrual cramps around 4 am. In my sleepy mind…I thought maybe I should see how long this feeling lasts…so I started counting. It lasted about 20 seconds and then I went back to sleep and didn’t experience any thing else like it for the rest of the night.

So…was that a contraction? I think so. Sometimes I get really low pelvic pain, but I am pretty sure it’s just the baby grinding his head around. It only lasts a few seconds. People have described Braxton hicks to me as a painless tightening of the belly. Well…my belly feels tight all of the time so….

I have my 37 week appointment tomorrow and I dying to know if I have made any changes to my dilation status. At the same time…last nights possible contraction opened my eyes to the reality of labor. It’s coming and we are now on the soon side of sooner rather than later!

Stretch Mark Realities

When I got pregnant, I knew I was going to get stretch marks. KNEW IT.

I have had stretch marks since I was 13. I have them on my breasts, upper thighs, arms, hips, and a few on my stomach from when I was at my heaviest weight 6 years ago. Now most of these are already faded to skin tone. They are a part of me and I am used to them. I never used products to reduce them or get rid of them (mostly because I don’t believe they work).

So, back to pregnancy…when i got pregnant I bought some Burt’s Bees oil, and used it on my stomach and hips. I didn’t use it regularly, and wasn’t really worried about it. I have to admit I was surprised that my stretch marks took so long to show up. They arrived at about 32 weeks. They are just on my lower belly aside from one, about an inch long adjacent to my belly button. Since 29 weeks I have been using some stretch mark lotion that I received at my baby shower…mostly just to keep moisturized, since again, I knew I was going to get stretch marks.

Last weekend my belly was itching uncontrollably. I tried my lotions…no help. Finally I thought about coconut oil. Duh. I love coconut oil for cooking, and I have read a little bit about it’s benefits as a moisturizer. Last summer I used it on a sunburn and had really good results. I tried it to stop the itching… And it helped a little bit, but moreover, and call me crazy, but I think it faded my new stretch marks a little.
So…I have used it every day since. My skin is super soft and we will see what happens in the next few weeks with my marks.