Race Recap: Joe Plant Memorial 5K


I walked the Joe Plant Memorial 5K with Andrea a couple of weeks ago. We do this race every year and it was awesome to see how it just keeps growing year after year! I felt great the entire 3.1 miles, with the exception of tight calves. We finished in 51:45, which I’m pretty happy about, especially considering my Goldy’s 5K time was 51:22, just three weeks earlier.

I also realized that this could be my second to last 5K! Team Charlie! is walking the Hope Walks and Rolls 5K this weekend with some friends and family to support Faith’s Lodge. After that, who knows? I have a work client’s 5K in the middle of June that I’ll walk if I’m feeling up for it, but not registering for that one quite yet!

Cross your fingers for us for good weather on Saturday!


Second Trimester Recap

Weeks 14 – 16
I kicked off the second trimester with a weekend trip to Atlanta with Andrea to visit friends Kate, Brian and her new baby! It was a great trip, but I was still dealing with some of the fatigue from the first trimester, so we didn’t exactly hit the town in the evenings.

Starting to show. Also, biscuits made this pregnant lady very happy!

 A few days after we got back from Atlanta, I came down with the worst head cold I’d had in years. And since I couldn’t take anything for it, I spent the next full week absolutely miserable (and telling anyone who’d listen about it). I also switched doctors (again) and had a great 16 week appointment with my new, new doctor. J and I toured one hospital we were considering delivering at and I set up some appointments to interview doulas.
Sometime during week 16, I noticed that maybe I was feeling some movement. This was definitely earlier than with Charlie, but that’s common for many reasons, one being that second time moms are now familiar with what movement feels like. Since we had the early genetic testing done, the only lab I had to have done  at my 16 week appointment was an Alpha-Fetoprotein (AFP) draw.
We also announced the gender to some close friends and family by sending them some ol’ fashioned snail mail. They either got a scratch off card or a confetti-bomb that announced Baby Nelson is a boy! It felt good to take small steps like this one to start celebrating this pregnancy, rather than fearing it.
Weeks 17 – 19
After my cold went away, I started to realize just how amazing the second trimester can be. My energy was back and I started walking daily, which did wonders for my mood as well. I also had to set up some additional doula interviews because I the doula I chose found out she was pregnant right after we sat down for an interview.
I started feeling like it was time to start actually getting some things done in preparation for this baby, so I signed up for some childbirth education classes, including Hypnobabies. We also got the AFP results back during week 17 and everything looked good.
I also really popped at the beginning of week 17!
At the end of week 19, I chose another doula (who, thankfully, wasn’t also pregnant). Super excited to be working with her! Also at the end of week 19, was our level two ultrasound with the perinatologists. This was the time period when we found out that Charlie had a likely fatal condition, so you can imagine the anticipation for this scan this time around. I wrote more about this day here.
Following our good news, I made an announcement (of sorts) here on the blog.
Symptoms that showed up during weeks 17-19:
  • Round ligament pain. I experienced round ligament pain when I was pregnant with Charlie, and it led to me deciding to stop running around 20 weeks. This time around, it showed up a bit earlier, but so far I’ve been able to work through it since I’m only walking and not running this time around. Case in point: I walked the Point Bock Run 5 miler and was able to keep a pretty good pace throughout!
  • The fatigue noticeably decreased
Weeks 20 – 22
It didn’t happen right away, but the anxiety that hung over me constantly for the first four months of my pregnancy, started to gradually lift after we got the all clear at the anatomy scan. J got to meet my new doctor at our 20 week appointment and the doctor did something cool — he handed J the doppler and let him find the heartbeat! Just reason #2,352,855 that I’m so happy to have found this new doctor.
Following a couple of good appointments, we decided to make our first baby purchases — an ottoman and some art for the nursery. And a crib. Setting up the crib together was as exciting as I always thought it would be, but it was also bittersweet.
My parents came for a weekend visit during week 22 and they brought a glider for us to use and the dresser/changing table from when I was a baby. It’ll be fun to have that in the nursery!
Lastly, we realized that we should probably get serious finding a daycare, considering most daycares in the Cities have waiting lists, so we went on a few tours and turned in applications. Hopefully we can get a spot secured and cross that off the list!
Symptoms that showed up during weeks 20-22:
  • No new symptoms, but definitely getting bigger and feeling it!

Weeks 23 – 26

At the end of week 23, I walked Goldy’s 5K. I also started noticing more frequent (though not yet consistent) movement and kicks throughout the day.
I made an appointment with a prenatal personal trainer during week 24 — a separate post on that coming soon. We also finished our registry which felt huge to me. With the help of my good friend Jen, I had registered for some things at Babies ‘R’ Us shortly before we got Charlie’s diagnosis. I had an unpleasant conversation with a Babies ‘R’ Us employee who called to check in to see if I needed help finishing my registry and worked for months to get off of their mailing and email lists. So, I was pretty proud of us for getting our registry taken care of!
We also went away for one night for a mini-babymoon. As I was laying in bed, ready to fall asleep, I saw my first kick from the outside. That was probably one of the coolest moments of the second trimester, not to mention, this is when J also felt his first “for sure” kick.
The following week, we celebrated Jesse’s birthday at the perfect place for a pregnant lady — a sushi restaurant!
(Sarcasm. I obviously didn’t get to indulge in the good stuff.)
That night, for the first time, I experienced kicks waking me up out of a sound sleep and keeping me from falling back asleep. It might have been the only time in my life where I wasn’t seriously pissed about being woken up. That’s true love right there, because I love my sleep.
A big milestone we got past during week 25 was my gestational diabetes test. I passed and my iron levels also looked good.
I had my first official session with my new personal trainer. It was awesome and I felt great moving my body in a ways besides just walking. Lifting weights made me feel strong again. And I surprised myself with how much strength I actually hadn’t lost.
We also toured another hospital and started looking at the pros and cons of the two hospitals we’re deciding between. I can’t believe it’s almost time to need to make that decision and get pre-registered!
At the end of week 26, I ended up in the hospital because I thought I might be leaking amniotic fluid. (More on that, here.) Luckily, they were able to rule that out and I had a non-stress test done while I was there. Baby looked great — really active.
Symptoms that showed up during weeks 23-26
  • The worst cramp in my calf I’ve ever experienced. Have you ever had a Charlie horse? It was like that, but one million times worse because it just kept cramping over and over and I could feel the knots pulsing. It was awful. Two days later, I was still sore.
  • Seasonal allergies, way worse than usual
Well, that was….long. Planning to do a few regular third trimester updates, rather than one big, long one like I did for the first and second trimesters.

Stillwater Babymoon

Even though we didn’t even travel an hour away and only stayed one night, it was great to get away and do a mini babymoon this past weekend.

We left after work on Friday, getting to Stillwater just before 6 and went to check into our hotel. Per a suggestion from a friend, we stayed at the Lowell Inn, a classic hotel that was built in 1927 — what a cool building!


We got settled in and then walked the half mile to The Green Room for dinner. It was a gorgeous night out and lots of people were out and about.


We’ve been meaning to try this place for a few years now — J’s friend’s brother is one of the co-owners. It was the perfect opportunity to give it a try! The menu is super interesting — a blend of American and globally-influenced cuisine. We started with the (unpictured) lamb tacos. They were incredible. For my entree, I decided on the mushroom gnocchi. Because, well…gnocchi.


I certainly didn’t hate it, but it was a bit too salty for me. Next time, I definitely want to give one of their curry dishes a try. The table’s food next to us smelled amazing.

After dinner, we took a walk along the river. I had to take an obligatory picture of the lift bridge.


The next morning, we got up and walked to The Oasis Cafe for some breakfast. It recently reopened after having some renovations done, and it sure was busy! We got the last two seats at the counter.



I branched out from my usual scrambled eggs and wheat toast and got french toast and bacon. YUM. French toast is so good. I ordered water so we could stop at Tin Bins, a cute coffee shop that was on our walk back to the hotel.


Since it was another gorgeous day, so I got my first iced (decaf) of the year. We also stumbled upon the Stillwater Feed Store on our walk back and they had some cute farm animals outside of the store. They also had fresh eggs, so we picked up a dozen! It was almost 11 a.m., so we headed back to our room, packed up the car and checked out.


While this was a lovely getaway, I’d be lying if I said it was totally carefree and relaxing. It was too easy to draw parallels between this babymoon and our getaway that was supposed to be a babymoon while I was pregnant with Charlie. But, overall, it was a great time and we’re lucky to have been able to getaway for a night.

Favorite things to do in Stillwater?

Pregnancy eats, featuring Almond Breeze

*This post is sponsored by Almond Breeze Almondmilk. I received a free 32 oz. carton of Almond Breeze Unsweetened Original Almondmilk Coconutmilk. All opinions are my own.

Overall, I’d say I’m eating a lot healthier during this pregnancy than during my last. The first trimester was rough since the only things I felt like I could eat consisted mostly of carbs, but since then, I’ve gotten back on track. And just like when I’m not pregnant, I find that eating a good breakfast is critical to me staying on track the rest of the day. My new favorite breakfast these days is overnight oats.

I’m super late to the game on the whole overnight oats thing. Before this pregnancy, I wasn’t a huge oat fan, but then recently, I started eating instant oatmeal and mixing in my own toppings, etc. Eventually, I decided that I wanted more control over the ingredients in my oats, but didn’t want to give up the convenience of the instant oatmeal. AND then Lee featured an Overnight Oat Week on her blog. I’ve been hooked ever since.

My two go-to recipes right now have been alternating between:

PB&J Overnight Oats

Maple French Toast Overnight Oats

Then, a couple of weeks ago, the Blue Diamond folks reached out to see if I’d be interested in reviewing their Almond Breeze Unsweetened Original Almondmilk Coconutmilk.


Since I don’t drink dairy milk, try to limit my soy consumption and already drink Almond Breeze Almondmilk primarily, I was super excited to give it a try! First, I used the Almond Breeze Unsweetened Original Almondmilk Coconutmilk in my overnight oats and they turned out superb!

Not pretty, but SOOO yummy.

Not pretty, but SOOO yummy.

I didn’t notice a big difference between this batch and the ones I make with regular Almond Breeze almondmilk. They were just a delicious as usual.

I also used a splash of it in my coffee! I loved the taste, even more than when I add a bit of the full fat coconut milk that comes in a can. I usually drink my coffee black, but could get used to changing it up from time to time.


Smoothies have also made a reappearance in my diet, especially now that J is also hooked on them 🙂 This is important mostly because it means he’ll make them for me most of the time! We used Almond Breeze Unsweetened Original Almondmilk Coconutmilk in our latest batch of smoothies and not surprisingly, they were delicious! The Almond Breeze Unsweetened Original Almondmilk Coconutmilk will definitely be added to our milk rotation from now on.

Do you drink non-dairy milk? What’s your favorite kind?

Maternity Wardrobe + My First Stitch Fix

To be honest, I’ve been struggling a lot with what to wear lately. I’ve been trying really hard not to spend a fortune on new maternity clothes, but I found myself showing a lot earlier this time around and while the timing of this pregnancy roughly lines up with my last one, it’s not exact, so I’m going to need more spring/summer clothes this time around.

Work wear and special occasions

My work dress code is pretty casual, unless we have clients in the office or meetings. So winter wasn’t too terrible — I could wear jeans and sweaters. But now I’m working on how to make some of my summery outfits slightly more professional so I can wear ’em to the office.

I also have a few events coming up, including a business professional event for work and a few weddings. Oh, and my baby shower! I’m hoping to buy two dresses (one to wear to all of the weddings and another for my shower) and scrape something together that I already have for my work event.

Everyday wear

The items I wear the most are a basic black dress that I feel like I can make less boring by adding a fun scarf or a statement necklace, maternity jeans, and now that it’s starting to get warmer out — maxi skirts.


Also, I’m WAY behind on this, but I had been holding out on trying Stitch Fix. But when they announced they are now doing maternity fixes, I caved. To be honest, I was less than pleased with my overall Stitch Fix experience and I kind of doubt I’ll do another one, but we’ll see. I ended up keeping one piece of the five sent.


The jeans were way too long and the white top wasn’t maternity so the tank that went underneath just was a bit too tight and uncomfortable.


I didn’t like the way the dress fit. That wasn’t a Stitch Fix issue — overall, I liked the dress. I loved the necklace. It was definitely my style, I just didn’t really need it. I kept the black top. It’s nothing fancy, but I can wear it to work or out with nice jeans and heels and it’s super comfortable. It was $58, so $38 after subtracting my styling fee.

Workout wear

During my last pregnancy, I purchased a couple of Oiselle items that I sized up in, but many of my regular size items are working OK, as long as they aren’t too form fitting. Some of my favorites include: any of the Oiselle flyte line (still wearing regular size), distance shorts (sized up in these), the verrazano bra (sized up) and the gwen tank (sized up). The flyer jacket in my normal size still fits well also. Oh, and I’ve been wearing my Katron jacket a ton lately, but it’s getting tighter by the day 🙂

I also invested in a few new pairs of shoes. I lived in my birkenstocks last summer, which was great, but I wanted more variety this time around and also wanted to replace a pair of dressy flats that were falling apart. So I purchased a new pair of flats, another pair of birks and I currently have my eye on these. Then I’m cutting myself off!

*Not sponsored in any way by StitchFix. Just sharing my opinions!

Pregnancy After Loss (PAL) Awareness Day


In the United States, one out of every four pregnancies ends in miscarriage and one in every 160 pregnancies end in stillbirth. These numbers do not include infant death from preterm labor, diagnosis of life-limiting conditions, or SIDS. Here in Minnesota, Governor Dayton declared today, March 15, as Pregnancy After Loss Awareness Day, and March, Pregnancy After Loss Awareness Month. The amazing site Pregnancy After Loss Support has been leading the effort in raising awareness and acknowledging the difficult journey of balancing joy and grief during a subsequent pregnancy after loss.

I’m honored to contribute to the Pregnancy After Loss Support site as a Bump Day Blogger where I’ve been documenting my own PAL journey.


We feel so lucky to have been able to get pregnant again, but it hasn’t been a joy-filled journey. We had our big appointment — the anatomy scan — last week. This is the appointment that, just under 11 months ago, we found out our unborn son was likely going to die. The one that changed our lives forever. But this time around, we got happier news, and with that, a small weight has been lifted. And in two days, I’ll be halfway done with this journey that, at times, has felt like it might kill me.

I’ve switched doctors twice, had three ultrasounds, more than a couple frantic calls to the doctor and quite a few panic attacks. And unfortunately, these are all very common and normal things to happen in subsequent PAL. But sometimes you feel like something is wrong with you, especially when those around you are telling you how excited you should be that you’re pregnant again and that you shouldn’t worry because it’s bad for the baby, or chances of what happened before are low, so it likely won’t happen again and that you need to think positively. Those things aren’t helpful because I know all of those things. But trauma is a very real thing. And those who suffer from it have very little control of the after-effects.

So that’s why this day and month are so important — please help spread the word to help support women and their partners who are navigating this, sadly all-too-common journey. Find out how, here.