Thursday, July 26, 2012

5 Ways to Naturally Induce Labor

Since I have officially hit the 37 week mark and am considered full term (meaning baby is fully developed and ready for the outside world at any time now) I have decided it is time to do whatever I can to help convince this baby girl that it is time to start thinking about checking out of hotel mama.  Don't get me wrong, I love pregnancy and I am all for this baby coming out on her own terms, when I know she's ready, but if I can do little things to naturally help convince her to come out sooner than later, then you better believe I'm going to do it.  With the temperatures rising over 100 degrees this summer and trying to keep up with a 4 year old and a 22 month old, while also making sure the house is presentable, laundry is clean and folded and food is on the table, I am very anxious to get this baby out of my belly and into my arms.

So here are the top 5 ways I've found to naturally induce labor:

1.  My favorite: EAT PINEAPPLE!  This is one of my favorite fruits and I could eat an entire pineapple in one sitting, no problem.  The key is to get only fresh pineapple though.  The reason for this is that pineapples contain a natural enzyme called Bromelain, which is believed to work like a prostagladin and aid in the ripening and softening of the cervix.  If you buy the canned fruit, the enzyme has already diminished and will not help to induce labor.  (You can read more here)

2.  Eat Spicy Food!  Not sure if this one really works or not, but I love spicy food and if it could possibly help induce labor, I'm all for it!

3.  Walk!  As I mentioned before, I have a 4 year old and a 22 month old, so evening walks are my favorite!  We get some nice quality, family time, it wears the kids out before bed and it hopefully gets me a few steps closer to meeting my baby girl.  Not to mention, it helps me get my lazy, pregnant butt up burn some extra calories.

4.  Sex!  While sex is not the most comfortable thing at this point of my pregnancy, it does prove to help induce labor.  Like the pineapple, semen releases prostaglandin, which is said to stimulate the cervix and possibly cause contractions.

5.  Nipple Stimulation!  This is said to produce a release of oxytocin (the body's natural form of pitocin, which is what doctor's use in order to induce labor in the hospitals).  The release of this oxytocin causes contractions and can ultimately lead to labor.  So get to rubbing those boobies! lol

I've heard of others, such as using Castor Oil, but this is not one that I would actually try out, myself.  Although my mom did it with her third and she went into labor that night (after sitting on a toilet for a couple hours first).  Sorry, but flushing out my intestines and causing intestinal contractions is not my idea of a fun labor, but go for it if you're into that).  Other ways that I've read about, but haven't tried and probably won't try, include: Bumpy car rides, accupressure, raspberry leaf tea, Cohosh and Evening Primrose Oil (which are herbal solutions that can help ripen the cervix) There haven't been enough studies done on herbal use during pregnancy for me to trust that these are completely safe and effective, so definitely consult your doctor before using any of these methods).  

Please feel free to share any methods you may have used or share with us whether any of these actually worked for you.  Wish me luck!

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Our 4th of July Festivities!

 Happy Independence Day to everyone! I hope you all had as much fun as I did this year! The funny thing is, we really didn't go anywhere or do anything too eventful, which I think is why I enjoyed this 4th of July so much.  Usually we are busy running around to visit the in-laws or heading here for a cookout and there for some fireworks and we have to worry about the kids getting cranky and having to pack them up in the car, only to fall asleep for 30 minutes and then wake them when we get home... But no! We hung at our house this year, just us four (mommy, daddy and the two boys), we did some fun festive cooking together, grilled out in the backyard together, did fireworks and the boys were more than willing to climb into bed without a fight after it was all said and done.

What a fantastic day! We even got to see some fabulous fireworks from across the street that someone must have been doing from the local pool or something.  I hope you all had a fun and safe holiday as well.  It's just a shame that there are still two days left in the work week for those of you who have to return to the office tomorrow.  Oh well, it will feel like Monday, but it's already Thursday! (I try to be optimistic about these things).  But anyways, here are a few highlights from our fun day!

Red & Blue pancakes topped with confectioner's sugar! (They were clearly a hit with my boys)

I put together this fun collage of pictures from my favorite garden, CrystalHill Gardens, named after me!  If you haven't checked out their facebook page, you should definitely see some of the fabulous varieties of daylilies that they have! Be sure to like their page and follow them on twitter for the newest photo updates! 

My boys and I made these fun, festive strawberries as a nice healthy snack this afternoon.  I got the idea from pinterest of course.  Not only were they fun to make and pretty to look at afterwards, but they were absolutely DELICIOUS! (The kids ate them up as soon as I was able to get a picture of them)
 My little cutie pie with his strawberry! (annoyed that mommy had to snap another picture before he could bite into it!)
And last, but not least, here are the boys enjoying daddy's firework display! 
Daddy is a bit of a pyromaniac! lol But he definitely knows how to put on a show for us!


Sunday, July 1, 2012

Making Room for #3

I am quickly approaching my 34th week of pregnancy, which leaves me a short 6 weeks until my due date (but neither of my other babies ever lasted that long in the oven).  The closer I get, the more I realize how little I've done so far to prepare for my little girl's arrival.  My two boys (4 and almost 2), will be moving into a room together so that the nursery can be used for the new baby.  So the biggest issue is... well hold on, there's a few issues here:

1. My little guy has been using the crib up until last week, where he finally refused to stay put and would climb out every time I put him down for bed.  So we removed the railing and now gate the doorway so he can't wander out of his room at night.

2.  We are moving the little guy into his big brother's room once the baby arrives, but this room barely has room for a second bed.  If we do get another twin, they will have no room to play in there.  Bunk beds are too dangerous for the little guy, who would probably try diving off the top, toddler beds would be a waste of money because they will grow out of them in no time, which leaves me with what choices really? Hmmm? I need help!

We just moved into this house a little over two years ago and are already growing out of it. Has anyone else had this dilemma, and would you mind sharing with me how you overcame it? I'm just quickly running out of time and ideas. We have a spare "bedroom" in the basement, but it's become my husband's office room and I don't think I would feel comfortable having any of my kids down there alone quite yet.  Ohhh decisions, decisions.  I'm sure I'll figure something out (I better).  But any help or advice would be greatly appreciated.