Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Week 27 ~ Aches and Pains + Protein Bar Recipe

Your baby's the size of a rutabaga!
At 13.6 to 14.8 inches and 1.5 to 2.5 pounds, she's not just getting bigger, she's getting smarter.
  • She's practicing inhaling and exhaling with her rapidly developing lungs.
  • It's official: Baby's showing brain activity! And her brain will keep on getting more complex.

How your baby's growing:

This week, your baby weighs almost 2 pounds (like a head of cauliflower) and is about 14 1/2 inches long with her legs extended. She's sleeping and waking at regular intervals, opening and closing her eyes, and perhaps even sucking her fingers. With more brain tissue developing, your baby's brain is very active now. While her lungs are still immature, they would be capable of functioning — with a lot of medical help — if she were to be born now. Chalk up any tiny rhythmic movements you may be feeling to a case of baby hiccups, which may be common from now on. Each episode usually lasts only a few moments, and they don't bother her, so just relax and enjoy the tickle.

How your life's changing:

The second trimester is drawing to a close, but as your body gears up for the final lap, you may start noticing some new symptoms. Along with an aching back, for example, you may find that your leg muscles cramp up now and then. They're carrying extra weight, after all, and your expanding uterus is putting pressure on the veins that return blood from your legs to your heart as well as on the nerves leading from your trunk to your legs.
Unfortunately, the cramps may get worse as your pregnancy progresses. Leg cramps are more common at night but can also happen during the day. When a cramp strikes, stretching the calf muscle should give you some relief.  Straighten your leg and then gently flex your toes back toward your shin. Walking for a few minutes or massaging your calf sometimes helps, too.
I have definitely started feeling the aches and pains of pregnancy.  For so long I kept thinking about how great I felt and that I didn't even feel pregnant.  Then it hit me.  The aching back longing for a hot soak in the tub each night from walking through the grocery store, standing too long in the kitchen, sitting too long, or just from sleeping on my side.  This baby also keeps wanting to turn longways  across the bottom of my belly.  This is really uncomfortable when coupled with round ligament muscle pain.  I also feel so much more tired and grumpy lately.  Of course, it's all worth it when you are holding that sweet bundle in your arms.  And, it's not that far away anymore ; )

Here's a recipe for homemade protein bars.  I cut this out of a Vitacost flyer a long time ago and just ran across it again.  These are great for any time you or your family members need a burst of protein.  Enjoy!

No-Bake Protein Bars

2 cups quick oats
1/4 cup peanut butter
4 scoops flavored protein powder
1 Tbs ground flaxseed
1/2 cup water
Optional: 1/4 cup raisins, cranberries, sliced almonds, or chocolate nibs

Mix all together in large bowl.
Line square baking pan with wax paper.
Spread dough in pan.
Freeze 30 minutes.
Cut into 8+ bars.

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