Week 19: Mini Summer Vacation

I’m on vacation this week! Geoff and I headed up to Minnesota to visit my family at the lake, and I gotta tell you, it doesn’t get more relaxing than this. Reading on the porch, “putt-putt” tours of the lake on the boat, catching a few fish off the dock, riding along while everyone surfs behind the boat (so fun, but preggies have to opt-out).

I’m not ready to go back to reality yet, but I figured I should at least post my weekly update since we’re now at 19 weeks! Basically, I feel like I’m not pregnant except the baby is moving around a lot more (at least once a day), I have had a few really awful leg cramps, and people are definitely noticing the bump.

I really can’t believe that I’m only one week away to being at the halfway point in my pregnancy, and we only have two weeks left until we can find out the gender! Have you voted in the sidebar poll yet? Since my last post the “boy” votes have taken the lead… I guess we’ll see!

This week according to What to Expect:

Your baby’s skin now has a protective coating, while you might be hoping for something to protect you from painful leg cramps.

Your Baby in Week 19 of Pregnancy

Have you ever seen a mango dipped in cheese? Well, that’s what your baby looks like this week due to a little growth spurt (she’s about a half pound in weight and six inches long) and a substance called vernix caseosa. This greasy white stuff covers your baby’s skin, protecting it from the surrounding amniotic fluid. (Without it, she’d look totally wrinkled as she entered the world.) The vernix sheds as delivery approaches, though some babies still sport a bit of the coating at birth.

Your Body in Week 19 of Pregnancy

One minute you’re lying peacefully in bed and the next your calf muscle feels like it’s about to explode. Leg cramps during pregnancy are pretty common (no one knows exactly what causes them, but muscle fatigue or compressed blood vessels are the likeliest culprits) and tend to strike at night. You might also be wondering about tingling and numbness in your fingers and toes about now. It’s a weird sensation but totally normal, probably a result of your body’s swelling tissues pressing on nerves.

WIAW Weekly Recipe: Overnight Slow Cooker Apple Cinnamon Oatmeal

Courtesy of Monica at The Yummy Life

This is a yummy overnight oatmeal that you can make in your crockpot. My mom made it for us while we were visiting, so I’m including her variations here. I like my oatmeal a little sweeter, so I added a tiny bit of maple syrup to it and it was delicious!

Ingredients
2 apples, peeled, cored, cut into 1/2-inch pieces (2-1/2 to 3 cups chopped)
1-1/2 cups fat-free milk (or substitute non-diary alternative like almond milk)
1-1/2 cups water
1 cup uncooked steel-cut oats
2 tablespoons brown sugar (or substitute maple syrup or other desired sweetener)
1-1/2 tablespoons butter, cut into 5-6 pieces (optional)
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1 tablespoon ground flax seed (we used chia seeds)
1/4 teaspoon salt
Optional garnishes: chopped nuts, raisins, maple syrup, additional milk or butter

Instructions
Coat inside of 3-1/2 quart (or larger) slow cooker with cooking spray. Add all ingredients (except optional toppings) to slow cooker. Stir, cover, and cook on low for approx. 7 hours (slow cooker times can vary). Spoon oatmeal into bowls; add optional toppings, if desired. Store leftovers in refrigerator. Freezes well.

To reheat single servings: Put 1-cup cooked oatmeal in microwave proof bowl. Add 1/3 cup fat-free milk. Microwave on high for 1 minute; stir. Continue cooking for another minute, or until hot.

Nutritional Info (per 3/4 cup serving): 149 calories, 3.6g fat, 27.3g carbs, 3.9g fiber, 4.9g protein; Weight Watchers Points+: 4 

100 Healthy Foods to Eat During Pregnancy

As I’ve said before, I am very conscious about what I eat. Weight Watchers trained me to pay attention to what and how much food I eat. Since I’ve had to entirely change my eating habits since learning I was pregnant, I purchased some books that will hopefully help guide me toward good pregnancy foods during this process.

The first book I bought is called, “The 100 Healthiest Foods to Eat During Pregnancy: The Surprising, Unbiased Truth About Foods You Should Be Eating During Pregnancy But Probably Aren’t.

Sounds pretty straightforward, and it is. It starts with some basic information about certain nutrients you especially need to make sure you are getting while pregnant (iron, calcium, Vitamin D, folate, etc.) and explains why you need them.

The rest of the book basically breaks your pregnancy down into trimesters, then tells you which foods are best for you during each trimester and why you should be eating them (how they benefit you and baby). The one thing I found a little silly with this book was a couple foods were a little ridiculous. I mean, I understand that many people in their first trimester (including myself) suffer from morning sickness, but seriously? Ice chips made the first trimester list? Come on, people. Ice chips are water, not food.

The book also contains information about what to eat while you are breastfeeding, as well as foods that can help with postpartum depression, but I have not yet read those chapters as they don’t currently apply to me.

This is the first of the four book reviews I’ll be doing (at least in regards to nutrition). Let me know if you’ve read any of the books I mention and if you found them useful, or if you have other nutrition resources you think I should check out.

Recipe: Chocolate-y Vegan Overnight Oats with Chocolate Banana Softserve Topping

Courtesy of Liz at www.iheartvegetables.com

This is one of the best breakfast recipes I have found so far, and the best part is that it is incredibly easy! The hard part for me is making everything the night before because I tend to forget about it, but believe me, this recipe is worth trying (even my husband loves it). Plus, most of the ingredients (oats, chia seeds, bananas) are found in the Top 100 Foods book, so you know baby will like it too.

Overnight Oats Ingredients
1/3 cup old-fashioned oats
3/4 cup soymilk (I used vanilla almond milk)
1 tbsp chia seeds
1 tbsp cocoa powder
6 drops vanilla stevia (I used half a packet of stevia)

Topping ingredients
1/2 frozen banana
4 cubes frozen soymilk + splash of non-frozen soymilk
2 packets of Truvia (I used my remaining stevia from the oats)
1 tbsp cocoa

Directions
Whisk all oats ingredients together and put in the fridge (covered) overnight. In the morning, blend the topping ingredients together in your blender or food processor until smooth. Pour on top of your oats and enjoy the chocolate-y deliciousness!