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38 weeks

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50% effaced!

At my Dr. Appt. this afternoon, I was 50% effaced and a “finger tip” dilated…so not quite 1 cm. yet. Regardless! I’m very excited as I was expecting nothing! I haven’t even had one contraction yet so we’ll see how things progress these next couple of weeks!

Yea! :)

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37 weeks

Baby Center: Your Pregnancy, 37 weeks

I probably should have been linking to these all along but just now thought of it. Sorry.


How are you feeling?

8 mos. pregnant!This is the most asked question these days. I’m bombarded with it everyday at work. I recognize it’s intention is good but I repeat the same thing over and over and that starts to get annoying. All you moms out there relate with me, I’m sure. :)

So, to be proactive, I’m going to post a blog to let people know my current status…something I should be doing anyway, right?

I’m bigger than ever (picture to come soon)! This makes for tired feet, tired body, tired momma! I’m sleeping fairly well, although every turn from left to right, right to left & back again feels like trying to un-beach a whale! ha ha! It just takes that much energy to roll over and resituate my 5 pillows! But I’m usually able to find a comfy position for a while. The only times I’ve not been able to get comfortable has been the first really warm days here in Wisconsin and our temp. never went below 68 degrees in the house at night. I was quite stuffy. So, poor Nathan, has to sleep with the windows open at night. I’m sure he’s happy to oblige if it keeps the wife comfy and sleeping.

I’ve started to notice swelling…in my hands when I’m typing and in my feet when I’ve been standing too long. My Blood pressure was high at my last Dr. Appt. but after two days of more water, more protein, and more feet elevation, it was back to normal. So, no concern about preeclampsia. whew!

The doctor was able to feel what position the baby is in and it’s a head down position (not breech) which is always good news! She also predicts that if I go to 40 weeks, he’ll be at least 8 lbs! This is not surprising as I weighed 8 lbs., something-something, & 3/4’s when I was born. I was hoping for a small baby like Nathan and Hannah – 6 lbs., something-something oz., but that’s not going to happen. I just hope he’s not in the double digits! I’ll eventually have buff arms if he is. Always trying to find the silver-lining. :)

“When’s your due date?” This is the second most asked question. I continue answering, “April 17th” but enjoy adding, “about 3 weeks away”! Somehow that helps people better understand. It’s not a random date but a mental picture of nearness. Yesterday, I almost ran into a co-worker while turning a corner. He exclaimed, “Whoa! What month are you?”. I laughed, retuning with, “I’m in my 9th mos. Does it show?” ha ha! Poor guy, I must have put him in an awkward situation…all men and husbands understand his pain, I’m sure.

I had 2 lovely showers this weekend! Both very different from each other. One, loud and laughing and the other, small, quiet and pensive – including lots of good advice and questions. Both shared a special time of prayer for Nathan and I and our little Lenz. I look forward to starting on the Thank You notes to spend “still time” reflecting on our blessings & love filled community.

To close, here’s a verse that keeps coming to mind when I anticipate labor…

“The LORD will fight for you; you need only to be still.”
-Exodus 14:14

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How much Grace?

I am overwhelmed by the love, grace and care that I have received from so many. Being pregnant has been, thus far, the most humbling experience of my life. My baby is already so loved by so many and because he’s still in my belly, I get to receive it and pass it on to him – for the time being. I also know that I am loved just as much as he by these gracious people (you!).

One example of this grace – a Director from my office just brought me some yogurt (with a spoon and napkin!) because she knew I am struggling with low blood sugar these last few days. It’s this little thing that means so much. With her busy-busy schedule, she even thought of me and bringing me some yogurt. I am so touched. I find myself too often not thinking of others in my pregnant state and being very self-consumed. How humbling to receive so much in spite of my inward focus.

So, all of you out there, reading this blog, I hope I am able to convey how much you have touched me and how thankful I am for all your thoughts, prayers, well-wishes, food offerings, baby shower prep & planning, gifts, hugs, emails, phone calls, lent maternity clothes & baby items, advice, labor & parenting tips, friendship, tears of joy,…

It is not lost on me. Thank you.

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Random thoughts…

1. Last night, I successfully made custard! I’m very proud of myself. Each time Nathan and I had attempted a custard before, we ended up with something that looked like egg-drop soup. Not the outcome we were going for. So, I’d found a recipe online at and it suggested that I add a small amount of the cooked mixture from the saucepan to the lightly beaten egg yolks and mixed it thoroughly before adding it back into the saucepan – all the while constantly stirring with a whisk. It worked! And we had Berry Custard Parfaits for dessert last night! Yummmm…

2. One of my favorite products is Land-O-Lakes Fat Free half-n-half. I love this because it’s less than 1 Weight Watcher’s point for 2 Tablespoons – enough for my cup of coffee. What makes this particular product better than say Coffee-mate Fat Free creamer is that it doesn’t contain any partially-hydrogenated oils – yet it’s still fat free! Anyhow, as I was adding my L-O-L F.F half-n-half to my coffee this morning, the L-O-L, Native American maiden’s knees caught my attention. This is unusual since it’s such a tiny picture – why would I notice this? I still don’t have an answer for that question. However, her knees are weird looking. They don’t seem proportional. If you have any L-O-L products in your frig, take a look and let me know if you agree about the weird knees.

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Could this be our kid?

So, I get these baby mailings now. Not sure how “they” found out we were expecting. Some of the mailings could be helpful…like the 2 free canisters of formula. Can’t guarantee we’ll use them but there’s always a small possibility that we’ll need them. Since they’re free, might as well keep them just in case.

Another mailing I received was a coupon for “The Children’s Place” – $10 off a$35 purchase. eh…maybe I’ll use it. But the real treasure was finding this picture….

Could this be what our kid will look like? I had an emotional connection immediately when I saw it. My hair, Nathan’s smiling eyes, the nose – could be a mixture of the Lenz and Jones noses (but noses are always such a mystery).

So, I’m thinking about this whole situation and while I’m having an emotional connection, my brain is saying, “this is weird, Kelli. This is not your kid…your kid is still inside.” This is true…and let me assure you, I’m not in love with the baby in this picture. But, it’s the closest thing I’ve seen to what our kid could look like. Thus, the emotional attachment.

Regardless, a weird happenstance.

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A couple months ago, my mom sent me some sentimental photos. I loved receiving them and wanted to share them with you.

These crazy kids are my parents (and me!). This photo was taken the day before I made my appearance in this lovely world. Moms caption on the back of the photo, “On the way to the hospital! My large tummy is overshadowed only by my large glasses!” So witty, isn’t she!

This is Billie ‘n me. He was my first Cabbage Patch – from Okinawa, Japan – sent to me from my dad when he was stationed there for 3 mos while in the marines. The Birth Certificate was all in Japanese except for the first name, Billie. I didn’t care…I loved him regardless. Photo taken in August 1985 (hmm…was this a birthday gift for my 5th birthday? I don’t remember the occasion.) The mom caption, “Billie & Kelli. Remember Billie? Practicing for the real thing!” I sure was. I’ve always wanted to be a mom, even amidst the “I want to be a Librarian and Cheerleader when I grow up” phase. The other two fizzled out but the mom dream has stuck.

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The French Doors are up!!!!

There is great rejoicing in the Lenz home! Our French doors for the baby’s nursery are finally finished and up! Nathan has worked sooo hard for weeks and weeks. On the front end, projects like these always seem easier than they really are. But Nathan has persevered on and is already making a wonderful daddy!

So much so, that after hours of work today, he was out shoveling mounds of snow! I love him dearly and I know he loves the baby & me.

While I don’t expect the baby to come early, yesterday I found myself saying, “Nathan, maybe God knows the baby will come early so he gave us lots of snow this weekend so we could get the doors up and the nursery finished”. Our fully scheduled weekend turned into an empty calendar full of cancellations. Thus, it’s been a productive couple of days and it feels good!

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7 mos.

Kelli at 7 mos. Hi friends, yesterday was 2 mos. till my due date. While it seems so close, I recognize that we still have a lot to do. As I type, I’m sitting on the couch, under my down-comforter with our windows wide open in 18 degree weather. “Is she crazy? Has the baby really sucked out ALL of her brain? Are her ‘hot-flashes’ so strong that she really needs to open the windows?” All of these things you may be asking yourself. The real answer is that Nathan is down stairs staining the French doors for the nursery. Opening the windows is the only way to have a “well ventilated area” at this time of year.

The nursery is painted – although it turned out much brighter than we anticipated. You can see the color in the background of my photo. The picture really doesn’t reveal the intensity of this green. Emily, my sister, you’ll know what I mean when I say “Greeny-glow”! I worry about this color. We painted “green” in order for it to be soothing – since we’ve heard from several places that the color yellow makes babies cry more. I’m not sure this new color solved our problem. Nathan tells me not to worry, “Kids love bright colors”, he says. So, we shall see. We hope adding the French doors and furniture will help to tone it down a bit. Stay tuned to find out what happens!

Besides just feeling BIG these days, I’ve “experienced” it in several ways. The first is the ever increasing amount of maternity clothes that are getting tight. I still have clothes that fit but only a couple months ago I was still “swimming” in these clothes. Some knowledge to pass on to “non-pregnant but hoping to be someday” ladies out there, don’t buy your entire maternity wardrobe at once. Hopefully you’ll have friends who are willing to donate their maternity wardrobe to you. That has been a HUGE blessing to me. But if you do buy some or all of your own clothes, expect to get bigger and need bigger sizes as your “bun” continues to “cook”.

The second BIG experience is that I can no longer “twist” to buckle my seat belt with both hands. I have to feel my way – one handed – to find the buckle and “click”. Not sure exactly what day I discovered my previous seat-belt buckling process no longer worked but I remember feeling that I had to “suck in” and really struggle to find the buckle. When the “sucking in” and struggling didn’t work, I resorted to the one hand maneuver.

Finally, the 3rd BIG experience, the standard bath towel no longer fits around me after a bath or shower. Luckily, we’d registered and received several bath sheets for our wedding. Using one entire bath sheet just for myself was not my intended purpose for having the bath sheets. But boy am I glad I have them for my ever expanding belly now. Another FYI for those “moms to be” out there.

We had our first Childbirth class yesterday at the Madison Birthing Center. I’m really glad we decided and have the opportunity to take our Childbirth class there even though we aren’t able to give birth there. If we are still around this area when baby #2 comes, we will for sure make every effort to be able to give birth there and hopefully even have a water birth. But being in the class really helps to give Nathan and I helpful tips on a natural childbirth. Leaving from the first class, yesterday, I feel very very strongly about having a natural birth and avoiding a medical inducement at all cost (at least until 2 weeks over due). Also in our class are two other couples who are having their babies in hospitals, one couple who is giving birth at St. Mary’s (where our son is expected to be born). So, it’s nice to know that we’re not the only ones who want a natural and unnecessary intervened birth in a hospital. We will need to be clear in our birth plan and firm in our decisions and communication with the OB and nurses on duty. We’ve already had some conversations where our doctor hasn’t fully disclosed the “cons” of a medicated birth or taken us seriously about wanting to have our baby naturally. We covet your prayers for us during our labor, so that we (especially Nathan) can stay lucid and make wise decisions under the emotional intensity of the process.