I had such good intentions of writing this about 2 months ago, but here I am, 38 weeks pregnant and finally getting to it. At least I made it before this little babe shows her face, which is still hard to believe will actually happen any day now.
So here's a little work-life update before everyone disappears for the holidays and before we become a family of THREE. I will be sharing 1 more recipe this Friday (it's a special holiday breakfast!) and hopefully a nursery reveal soon, too. Stay tuned!
I just wrapped up shooting Gena's incredible cookbook that will be coming out in spring of 2018. This was the third cookbook I've shot in the past 1 1/2 years, and I have to say it's my absolute favorite type of project to work on. It's incredibly challenging work, and so different from the other types of photo projects I work on. I have to take the author's and publisher's visions into account, while trying to stay creative with around 70-120 photos that will appear in 1 single cookbook. The photos need to be different enough but also feel like they flow together seamlessly. It can feel daunting when the cookbook project starts, trying to strategize the overall feel for the book and actually diving in to those first few shots. And then, trying not to focus on the number of shots left but paying attention to the shots you've taken so things don't become too repetitive and stale. It can be a mental game for sure, especially working on my own. But if it wasn't challenging it would be boring, so I work on trying to embrace and grow from the days where I feel like I have no idea what I'm doing.
I'm not sure if I mentioned the 2nd cookbook I shot this past spring. It was during my first trimester of being pregnant, when I wasn't doing much beyond napping and working on shooting the cookbook, The Wahls Protocol Cooking for Life, for Dr. Terry Wahls. This was such a different project for me to work on because it was heavily meat-based, focusing on a specific type of diet to treat auto-immune diseases. I wrapped up this 70 photo project in about 6 weeks and it comes out in spring of 2017. Be on the lookout!
Beyond the cookbooks, I got to work on monthly photoshoots creating some of Glutino's social media content, had a big shoot for Earthbound Farm's new website (coming soon), took photos for Blue Moose of Boulder, had a handful of blog + Instagram gigs, worked on a few photo projects for Love Grown, taught a few private photo classes, and a handful of other things I know I'm forgetting. It's been quite the exciting year for work!
symptoms (38 weeks + 4 days): Feeling pretty dang good for being this far along, and so very lucky for that. I keep saying this little lady has been so kind to me, and that she'll probably make up for it once she's actually here. So I guess that let's you know we're having a GIRL! (I think I announced on Instagram but forgot on the blog.) My sleep was actually worse in the 2nd trimester than it is now. I'm only getting up about 1-2 times per night and haven't had much/any insomnia or anxiety. I've felt quite a bit lazier than my usual self and go in waves of being tired and having a lot of energy. The babe has definitely dropped in the past week and feels especially low today. There is SO much pressure when I walk now. I've felt calmer than my normal self throughout the entire pregnancy and really haven't had any of the ups and downs I expected. At this point, I'm definitely getting antsy about when she'll decide to arrive and I'm trying to mentally prepare for her being late so I don't go too insane waiting. At least the holidays will be a nice distraction and Chris will have a couple extra days at home.
sidenote: Those pregnancy sleep pillows did not work for me at all. They made me sweat and gave me a sore neck. I also tried a long, memory foam body pillow as well and it was way too hot and cumbersome. What ended up working best was a normal (but thinner) pillow between my legs and a fluffier pillow to sort of hug my arm around. I've been using this pillow method since the 2nd trimester. My legs are starting to get super restless now, which is such a bizarre feeling.
workouts: I stayed really consistent with barre (2-3x/week), lifting + light cardio (2-3x/week), and almost daily walks throughout most of the pregnancy. In the last 2 months, things definitely slowed a bit more with the intensity and then in the past 2 weeks I've cut back even more. I've just tried to go with the flow the whole time and listen to my body. And right now, my body is like, COUCH. CARBS. CLEAN THE HOUSE. I'm thrilled I was able to keep up with my workouts for so long. It's definitely helped keep my body + mind feeling strong. I'm still trying to walk outside or on the treadmill most days, also some light lifting and squats to keep up my strength, and lots of stretching and moving around on a stability ball at home.
work, from a life perspective: While I absolutely LOVE my job, I am SO excited to be done in the kitchen for awhile. I even closed up my tripod and moved all of my photography surfaces + props out of our main living space. It feels great to be on a photo-cooking break for the next couple of months. I don't have a set in stone plan as of yet, but am trying to get a few jobs booked for late winter and early spring. Once I am working again, the plan for right now is to hire someone to come to the house to help with the babe as needed.
food: This is actually a pretty boring topic. I was totally shocked to not have any real cravings or aversions throughout this pregnancy. Sure, sometimes I don't feel like eating a certain type of cuisine/food but things have felt pretty normal on the food front. I would say my appetite was the largest during the first trimester, which I was surprised by. It soared a bit on our trip to Oregon, but I think that was just because I didn't want to miss out on any of the amazing food in Portland. I'm eating slightly more than "normal" right now, but nothing too crazy. Again, I'm just listening to my body. My almost daily guilty pleasure has been a hefty bowl of cereal and 80% dark chocolate. My weight gain came on fast in the first trimester, but slowed towards the middle of the 2nd and now into the 3rd. It's hovering right at 30lbs gained right now.
I actually don't plan on making freezer meals, but am hoping to tackle freezing energy bars, lactation cookies, waffles, and a few other healthy baked goods I can keep on hand for easy eating throughout the day. I did just make this broth/soup in the slow cooker to replenish my body after the babe is born and it is incredibly tasty. I'm freezing it in 2-cup portions. Our doula recommended making a nourishing brothy type soup that would be easy to eat and digest. (I blended the cooked vegetables instead of straining.)
holidays: We're staying put this year and are excited for a cozy Christmas at home. We'll definitely be watching Ohio State in the playoffs on New Years Eve, unless this little lady decides to come on time and I'm in labor.
house/nursery prep: Everything is washed and ready for baby through 3 months. Chris and I were giant babies (9 and 10lbs!), so I wanted to be ready with options. So far, the midwives are thinking she's very average sized and that's also what they said at our 20wk ultrasound. I've been working my way through each room in the house, trying to purge and organize. I don't have much left except the fridge and pantry, which are a both a disaster since shooting Gena's cookbook. We finished the nursery a few weeks ago and I just love it. I'll be sharing photos in the near future! If you check my Instagram stories, you may have already seen a sneak peek!
That's about all I can think of right now! But here are a few more life photos to finish things off. Be on the lookout for that breakfast recipe post coming soon. Happy holidays + safe travels to all!