Saturday, April 25, 2009

Requests From Our Readers: Week 3

This week we are discussing pregnancy concerns. Since most of the ladies reading this blog have been there we all have experience and advice to offer on the subject of pregnancy. Our reader has some common concerns with some specifics for her own case. Check out what she said:

"How do I get everything done--housework, errands, callings--while pregnant with no energy and taking care of a toddler and husband (and, in my case, working full-time) **this is the one I'm most interested in at the moment.

I need ideas for healthy, filling, quick snacks to eat when pregnant--looking for on-the-go stuff I can have in my purse or school bag that will give me energy!

What advice is out there for finding cheap, cute and comfortable maternity clothes (my personal twist--I'm still allergic to all synthetic fabrics...I can only wear cotton)"

So help her out!
What general and specific advice can you offer to pregnant women about getting things done, snacks to eat, and maternity clothes? What other thoughts do you have that can help make pregnancy easier?

Don't forget to check out the bath post below - we got some great ideas already, but more advice/ideas are always needed.

Next week: Finding time as a couple. (We also need more reader requests, so if you have an idea or a burning question - shoot us an email. Thanks for reading!!!)


Kaylyn said...

I hated most maternity clothes, so for shirts I would get the larger size DownEast basic shirts. They are longer and stretch out around a growing belly and they are 95% cotton and 5% spandex so I don't know if that will work for you but you could try.
A couple snacks that I really enjoyed and that were quick and easy were: string cheese, mixed nuts, v8 juice or other fruit juice, fruit cups(don't go bad and can't be bruised when in a bag).
I hope some of those help you out.

Jared and Delia said...

Almonds or some other raw nut. I still carry a bag of them with me every now and then. Dried fruit is also good for a snack. Both can hang out in your purse for a long time and not spoil or get smashed.

For maternity clothes I would shop at the DI or another thrift store. You would be surprised what cute maternity clothes you can find there. I also love DownEast Basics. They have stretchy skirts that are comfy for summer and stretch with you as you grow.

For finding time to get everything done...I wish I knew the best answer. :)I have some ideas to help: I like to get all my housework done one day and then my groceries another. BUT...when I am pregnant or sick I try to divide up the work more evenly between days. For example: Mondays - bathrooms, Tuesday - dust and vacuum, Wednesday - kitchen, Thursday - laundry, Friday - laundry, Saturday - groceries, Sundays - work on callings. Breaking it up into little chunks helps me mentally tackle it as well. I am dog tired but I can tell myself, " this kitchen will only take 15 minutes and then I can lay down." It also helps if I just can't get to my task for the day that day because I am exhausted, but the next day I have extra energy to make up what I missed.

I also use more paper plates and frozen meals to help reduce dishes and expended energy. If I did cook I would make a lot and freeze some for later or if I can stand the leftovers (being pregnant makes this hard) I would eat the leftovers the next day and save myself from making dinner the next night.

I let my house get way dirtier than I usually like but remember that you will eventually nest. So don't stress too much about it. By the time I was about 35 weeks I was scrubbing every inch of our house with soap and a toothbrush and organizing and "spring" cleaning like a mad woman so that more than made up for the neglect it saw the 7-8 months previous.

I hope you feel better soon!

Chris and Laura said...

This was originally my question, but I thought I'd drop a note anyway. I am allergic to synthetic fabrics, but I can usually wear anything that is at least 90% cotton and 10% something else. I do like the DownEast shirts, and someone just told me today about the dresses they have also. That's sounding really nice for summer...does anyone know how much they cost?

I like the idea of splitting up the chores onto different days instead of trying to do everything all in one day. I have also found it helpful sometimes to set a timer. I tell myself that I only have to clean for 15 minutes until the timer goes off, then I can take a break or be done. It's surprising how much you can really get done with just a few minutes of concentrated effort!

And to add one more thing (I guess I should have been more prolific in my email...), I am in the awkward stage of pregnancy where I have gained enough weight that none of my regular clothes fit, but maternity clothes are still huge. I have a tummy sleeve that can hold up my pants so I can leave the buttons undone. That is helpful for the pants, but I don't have many shirts that will cover the sleeve (nor will many of my shirts still button up nicely around my ever-expanding chest :P). Any suggestions for the awkward pre-maternity clothes stage?

Thanks ladies!

Erin said...

I really hate maternity clothes, so I'm little help there. I mostly wore pajamas unless I had to go out in public last time. :) I have found some clothes at Aeropostale and Target that were not maternity, but were still kind a baggy and perfect for that awkward stage in the beginning. Most did not last my whole pregnancy, but some did.

As for your question about getting everything done that you have to - I don't! That's what husbands are for hahaha!

But really, you just have to let some things go. Our house was messy for a while, and we ate more frozen foods, but it wasn't worth stressing over because I already didn't feel good. The most important things were that Hayden was fed and clothed, and we had something for dinner. Cleaning was done in stages with a lot of help from my husband.

Jared and Delia said...

I just saw some cute tanks you can wear over any shirt at Old Navy for $5. They are baggy all around- kind of like the dress-like shirts. I am not describing them well...anyway. I don't know what they are made of. They look like cotton though and would help hide the tummy and expanding chest. They are pretty long and come in a bunch of different colors too. I almost bought one for myself but decided to exercise some self I think they are really cute if that is worth anything. There is a DownEast outlet in West Valley if you are in the Salt Lake area ever and they have the shirts and skirts for WAY cheap. There is no longer one where we live ;).

I always felt like my maternity clothes were kind of plain so I would wear a flower in my hair or funky jewelry. They were easy accessories that made me feel more made up without having to get a new wardrobe.

Megan said...

The DownEast tanks in medium or large worked great for me during that inbetween stage. Also, If you don't want to wear your tummy sleeve, use a hair elastic. Put around the button and through the loop on your pants and it works great!

When I was pregnant, working, and going to school splitting up the house hold chores through out the week worked. Also, we ate out more or more frozen food because I was too tired to cook all the time. And like has been said before, sometimes you just have to let things go. Maybe your house doesn't get vacuumed as often or your floors don't get mopped as often, it's okay.

Megan said...

Oh on snacks, the snack sized popcorn bags were always good, or like has been mention string cheese, fruit cups, or yogurt.

Beth said...

I hit up some of my friends to borrow some of their maternity clothes. Also you can find some nice things at second-hand stores, like kid-to-kid, although DI is usually pretty picked over. (At least, the one in Provo is really picked over!)

As for snacks, I usually eat whole wheat bread and peanut butter. You can't really take it with you in your purse, but if you don't have the energy to cook a decent meal it's really quite perfect.

Anonymous said...

I have a question about cleaning while pregnant. Did any of you use different cleaning products when you were pregnant? I've heard rumors that some products can be harmful to your developing baby. This is kind of off-topic but since we're talking about cleaning I thought I'd ask!

Jared and Delia said...

Good question!

Since I have had kids, I have switched to kid friendly, pregnant woman friendly cleaners permanently. The only dangerous cleaners I use don't generate any or many fumes: AJAX for my shower/bath, and the toliet bowl cleaner. When I use these cleaners I use gloves so I don't absorb the chemicals into my hands. Otherwise I use hydrogen peroxide for my bathroom and to sanitize any surfaces(careful! it will bleach your clothes), vinegar (floors, mirrors, to remove odors - don't worry the vinegar smell eventually fades), dish soap (even to mop my floors with the vinegar and to clean counter tops and anywhere in my kitchen), Clorox anywhere spray, some apple based cleaner I bought from a door to door salesman that is great for stains on the carpet, and SOMETIMES straight bleach if needed. These cleaners are safe for me during pregnancy and then for my kids afterward. I hope that helps! I would love to hear of any other cleaners that are kid safe that other moms use.

Tannie Datwyler said...

I should worry about cleaners more, but I don't. Thank you so much for bringing that up!!! Delia - as always, you have great ideas.

Kelly A. said...

Laura, I so clearly remember the days when I was pregnant and teaching and how EXHAUSTED I was every day after coming home from school. I would seriously go to bed at 7:30 or 8! It's all worth it, though, right? :)

With getting things done, I have to agree with what has been said above about letting things so. Not always easy, but taking care of yourself is important. Let your hubby help you as much as his little heart desires! :)

When I was teaching and prego I loved eating fruit and yogurt bars! They are kind of like granola bars but with yogurt. I always had a stash in my desk at school. One of the teachers in the classroom across the hall from me was pregnant at the same time and she liked smoothie/yogurt drink thingies you can buy in a cup/container at the grocery store.

I also love Down East for clothes! And I was pleasantly surprised to find a couple cute, inexpensive maternity shirts at Ross once. I went back another time and they had nothing at all that I liked, so it can be hit or miss but maybe worth looking into.

Oh, and a cleaner that I like and use even when I am not pregnant is Simple Green.

Tink said...

Motherhood has a new line of belly bands. You can wear your regular pants and you add the band (in many different colors) so your pants can stay unbuttoned and no one will notice. I'm not sure if they're 100% cotton, though, but it's worth checking out. Also, companies like Modbe have their basic cap sleeves that stretch really well and then go back to normal after pregnancy.

As far as getting things done, I had a really rough 4th pregnancy and didn't even worry about it. My family pitched in where really necessary and we let the rest be a mess sometimes. You just have to become okay with that. Life is too short to worry about your house being a mess all the time and you need to just realize it won't be. I never ate healthy snacks, so I don't have a ton of ideas, but I love NutriGrain bars for an on the go snack, and Slim Fast bars. I realize you're not trying to lose weight, but they have a lot of nutrients and can be filling enough to tide you over.

Kym, Shaun and Riley said...

As for healthy/filling snacks I always went with nuts of any sort, granola bar, pretzels, or string cheese.(I don't know how healthy pretzels are, but hey) As for maternity clothes...I got a couple of maternity shirts at Old Navy, but right now the peasant-style shirts are in so I had a few of those that I can still wear now. I also like the DownEast shirts myself.
And last, but not least, housework and pregnancy didn't work out so well for me and this was my first baby. When I was in my 1st trimester I had absolutely NO energy. I would come home from work, sleep til 9, get up to eat something, and then go back to sleep. I don't know how it'll work out when I'm pregnant again so I'm excited for the advice.

Courtney said...

This might not be the greatest advice but it was one of my 1st thoughts...

Learn to deal with it. I have felt this same way with the same circumstances.

The conclusion I came to...Just Deal With It! I found myself getting hung up on not getting things done or doing enough. After having my 2nd I got even less done and beat myself up about.

So, bottom line.
*Realize that life and its circumstances are constantly changing and needing new solutions and approaches.
*You have more time now to get things done then when #2 comes...
*Don't get too down on yourself but keep it real and in perspective with all that you have on your plate.

I would always eat granola bars of all shapes and sizes on-the-go.

Britta said...

I know this is a really late comment...but someone could be browsing like me:)

A dirty house always gets me so adgitated that I stress out more if its not cleaned than I would just cleaning it. Although I'm exhausted at times (and not even pregnant) I always try to take 15 minutes and clean up before bed. Morning goes smoother and I'm not grumpy.

Another thing I heard is that if something needs to be done and will take less than two minutes, do it now. (Mail into trash or sorted, clothes in hamper instead of floor, etc) Doing that will reduce the need to clean nearly as frequently or heavily later.