Corkscrew Sanctuary

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So like, I mentioned before, we finally bought the membership to the local nature sanctuary to take walks in, rather than traipse through our golf course and possibly inhale all kinds of insecticides and pesticides. The membership gives all direct family members access to the Sanctuary, which means when my mom comes to help us with the baby, she’ll be able to take the baby there for walks. She just got her drivers license ( it’s a huge deal for a 60 year old woman in Russia), so she’ll be able to be more autonomous this time.

For us, the sanctuary has a perfect 2.5 mile trail, which is easy enough to walk, even in a nauseous pregnant state, but also works up a sweat  (or maybe it’s the Florida heat) and gets my heart rate up, which is all I can ask from a pregnancy exercising routine. We’ll be walking there every other day, with me doing pregnancy exercises on days off – that’s the plan. I’ve been feeling very lazy and working out is the last thing I want to do, but I can’t justify not doing it , considering the benefits and lack of risks ( unless you overdo it).

So pictures below is from our walk on Saturday. Most of the pics on the first collage is just me snapping away by our house waiting for hubby ( he always takes forever).

Also, we received the doppler. I guess it was in our mailbox all weekend, but we were so bummed when we realized doppler and ultrasound is the same that I didn’t even think to check the mail like I always do when expecting something. So we’re not really sure what to do with it.  First, we decided that we don’t want it, because, admit it, it’s more of a toy for us. So if it does ANYTHING to our baby, shouldn’t we NOT use it?  On the other hand, like any prospective parents, we’re DYING to hear our baby’s heartbeat again.

Yesterday, I came up with the idea of using it once, when it comes, for a very short period of time ( and videotaping it so that we can re-listen to it). And then just stowing it away (not returning it) for a time when there’s possibly an issue, or when we’re really worried, basically for “emergency use only”.  For example, once the baby starts kicking ( btw, when does that usually happen?), and then for some reason the kicks disappear, if we feel really worried, it’d be nice to have it around so that we had an option of using it.

I was also recommended a fetoscope by one of the readers. We’ll definitely be buying one and using it regularly from week 20, since it’s a simple fetal stethoscope.

So what do you guys think about the whole Doppler mess? Knowing how careful we’re trying to be, do you think using it once and then keeping it for emergencies is the optimal choice?  I can’t come up with a better one other than simply returning it….

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  • Reply
    June 20, 2011 at 11:54 AM

    I think it’s a good idea to keep the doppler, and just use if you are really nervous or if something comes up. My baby is normally quite active, and after two days of hardly any movement, I ended up going to see my OB to hear the heartbeat. I wasn’t super concerned, but I just wanted to double check and keep myself from being worried all weekend long.

    I usually feel movement pretty early about 15 weeks last time and 14 weeks this time. A lot of people (especially for the first baby) don’t feel movement until 20 weeks. Placenta placement can make a difference in how early you feel movement too.

    The first time I felt little nudges, when I would press on my belly. This time, it was a flop. I had just had some ice cream and all of a sudden, I felt her move. I couldn’t hardly believe it, since it was so early, but it had to be the baby! I love when they start moving, so fun!!

  • Reply
    Ashley Sisk
    June 20, 2011 at 12:09 PM

    It looks like you’ve found a great place to hang. And I have no idea about the doppler.

  • Reply
    June 20, 2011 at 1:33 PM

    Hi Elena…I found this blog recently through your photog blog…such a fun and exciting time in your life! My own sweet baby girl is almost 10 months time flies! I’m not sure what to say about the doppler. My hubby (who’s a doc) doesn’t recommend it be used any more than necessary. The tricky thing with keeping it is that even though you decide to use it “only for emergencies” you may end up using it much more than you intend…if you have it within easy reach, almost anything can be deemed “an emergency”.
    Oh, and I felt movement around 18 weeks….and hubs didn’t feel it until about 24 weeks. It definitely depends on placenta placement.
    Looking forward to following your story!

    • Reply
      Elena @ Art of Making a Baby
      June 20, 2011 at 2:16 PM

      I totally understand what you mean about being tempted to use it more…. I would hope that, since we’re worried about the effects of the doppler, we would keep ourselves in check, but who knows….

      My placenta (per doctor) looks anterior, though obviously it’s too early to know for sure… so I guess I have a long time to wait till kicks 🙂

  • Reply
    June 20, 2011 at 1:41 PM

    You might be able to feel baby flutters as early as 14 weeks. Especially since you are small. That’s when I felt mine and it was my first.

    • Reply
      Elena @ Art of Making a Baby
      June 20, 2011 at 2:17 PM

      Thin, maybe, but I am far from small 🙂 lol I’m 5’11”, I wonder if all that length means that I won’t feel it early? 14 weeks is really early though, you must have been very happy!

  • Reply
    June 20, 2011 at 2:33 PM

    I know that you are trying to keep things as safe as possible, however, there has been no research that has proven that doppler use has caused any problems. Maybe if you’re worried about it, limit your time to every other day for no longer than 15 minutes? However, if there was a problem with them, they wouldn’t be so readily available.
    But that’s my opinion.
    Also, I JUST started feeling my little one kick, and I’m 22 weeks. However, I have an anterior placenta, (basically, my placenta is on top of the baby, towards my belly button) so it’s harder for me to hear the heartbeat, feel the kicks, etc. It also made me show much earlier (I was wearing maternity clothing around 13 weeks…and it wasn’t “Bloat”)
    My friend who is smaller than me (I am overweight to begin with and also I’m 6’2, so I was told feeling the kicks would come later. and she’s a size 4) started feeling the kicks around 17-19 weeks.
    Also, for the nausea try a couple things. First off, invest in sea bands. You can get them at CVS or Rite Aid for about $10. They use a wrist pressure point, and really helped me through the constant barfing time. I also took ginger supplement pills that I bought at Whole Foods. The back of the bottle said “if you’re pregnant, ask your doctor”, so I did and he gave me the go ahead. 🙂
    I also used preggo pop drops. They are sour hard candies that trigger your mouth to produce more saliva.
    I was sick from about week 6-18 (non-stop, all day/night), so I feel your pain.
    You’ll get through it. I read somewhere that the sicker the Momma is, the stronger the pregnancy is. 🙂
    PS: Buy the book “Belly Laughs” by Jenny McCarthy. It’s a small book and won’t take long to read, but it’s hysterical, and really helped me feel like I’m “not alone” and to laugh at all the disgusting things that come along with pregnancy.

    • Reply
      Elena @ Art of Making a Baby
      June 20, 2011 at 2:42 PM

      All really good advice, Megan!
      I did get to read Belly Laughs, even before I was pregnant. Out of the fluffy, no info, silly pregnancy books, it was my favorite. I do have sea bands, but they have no effect on me 🙁 I haven’t tried ginger, because I HAAAATE the smell and taste of ginger. Hubby bought me some ginger tea and I almost threw up when I smelled it 🙂 haha
      My doc thinks my placenta is anterior ( though it’s too early to know for sure), and I am 5’11, so I feel I’ll have the same issue as you with the kicks and showing early.

      Oh and as far as doppler, there’s no clear evidence ultrasound causes any harm, however there hasn’t been any long term research done. I know some studies have shown that ultrasound waves heat up tissue and “scramble cell”…. but since noone has bothered so far ro research further and for long term defects we truly don’t know exactly how safe it is. So that’s my only concern.

  • Reply
    June 20, 2011 at 3:54 PM

    Personally, I think your doppler plan is a great one. Listen once and have a little bonding time for you and your hubby with the baby, and then tuck it away. If there is ever a time when your mommy intuition tells you something is off (and hopefully that will never happen!), you will at least have it for an emergency, like you said. As far as movement, I have had friends who have had anterior placentas and not felt anything until 25ish + weeks. Hopefully you won’t have to wait that long! I am not sure what height will do for movements, as I am only 5’3, but I do know that being slender does increase the chance that you will feel baby sooner, at least that was the case for me. With my first pregnancy, I started the pregnancy at 97 pounds and the first time I felt a “kick” that I knew for certain was the baby and not gas etc was 14 weeks. It felt like a tiny, little jolt of electricity in my belly. A week later, you could feel tiny punches from the outside. With pregnancy #2, I was 100 lbs going in to it, and I felt the baby at 12 weeks. But, I knew what I was feeling for the second time around! haha, it’s am amazing feeling, and feeling the babies move was definitely the best part of pregnancy, and the thing I miss about being pregnant the most!

  • Reply
    June 20, 2011 at 4:09 PM

    IMO your plan is perfect. You won’t do any major damage listening to the heart beat once. And then trust me there will be moments in your pregnancy that you will panic and need to hear the heartbeat. It doesn’t happen often and it will be later on but you will want it. I think you have a perfect plan not to use it just for kicks and giggles but if you need it. The sanctuary looks wonderful and it’s so great you are staying active!

  • Reply
    June 20, 2011 at 5:00 PM

    Your plan sounds good. That’s what we did. I think I used it 2-3 times before I could feel the baby move and never for more than 5 minutes at a time. Most people begin to really feel the baby between 16-20 weeks. I did at 18 weeks.

    One thing for you to note- if you really have decreased movement after 28 weeks, a doppler is not good enough. It can be a sign of distress and you should call you doctor. Just because you can hear heartbeat does not mean all is well. (I don’t mean to scare you but too often people put too much faith in the doppler)

  • Reply
    June 20, 2011 at 5:12 PM

    Someone probably said something already, I didn’t read the other comments, but kicks can start early for some like 16 weeks. The average is 20 weeks. I felt them at 21 weeks. It all depends on baby’s position and placenta position. It feels like gas bubbles. Once you see your husband with your little one in his arms and a proud smile, it’s the most adorable thing. I keep looking back at the day Alexis was born just to see his face and it’s so sweet. I think it’s smart to keep it for an emergency situation. I wish I had one for that when I was pregnant.

  • Reply
    June 20, 2011 at 6:18 PM

    I dot think height has anything to do about when you’ll feel kicks, it’s more like size wise how small or big you are in the belly area. Since you’re small (weight wise) you might feel them earlier.

  • Reply
    June 20, 2011 at 6:39 PM

    Dopplers are perfectly safe and there is zero research to confirm otherwise. I used one from week 10 of pregnancy (and found the heartbeat) up until I was in my last trimester and baby movement was clear and obvious. My child suffered no ill effects from the doppler and is advanced in all of her milestones (so it certainly did not delay her developmentally).

    I started feeling kicks at 17 weeks to the day. Everyone is different though. You will know when you feel them. If your placenta is in fact anterior it may be a little longer though.

    • Reply
      Elena @ Art of Making a Baby
      June 22, 2011 at 2:31 PM

      Actually, that’s not true. There’s plenty of research that shows effects if not harm from ultrasound. You might be interested in reading this: ( i got this link from another reader)

      A lot of what we do during pregnancy has very little risk, but some risk nonetheless, and those effects might not surface for many years, until the child is 50 years old. Some people are luckier than other, but everything we do, has consequences.

      • Reply
        June 22, 2011 at 4:20 PM

        Diagnostic ultrasounds have been around since the 1950’s, that is roughly 61 years ago. There still is no scientific hard evidence to support any negative biological effects from their use (most suggestions to the contrary are strictly opinion based like the article you provided above, and believe me there are opinions about everything that you do/do not do during pregnancy).

        You are going to encounter a million things during your pregnancy that could cause “negative” effects on your fetus. Even if you never leave the comfort of your own home. Try not to obsess over it, that is worse than anything.

        • Reply
          Elena @ Art of Making a Baby
          June 22, 2011 at 4:37 PM

          Yes, I agree! There’s no hard evidence and the studies done in Europe that show damage have not been replicated ( from what i read). I’m not sure if you clicked on the actual articles in the post I gave you a link for, but there’s quite a lot of evidence, it’s just it hasn’t completely substanciated. That being said, I do believe in being careful about everything during pregnancy, because we truly don’t know the effects. Take thialomide disaster. Doctors thought it was perfectly fine to give it out to pregnant patients and it took 50 years to prove the horrible scary effects of the drug on the fetuses.
          And some things just don’t do enough damage to be seen in short term, but can be discovered long term if someone bothered to do the studies.

          So basically, after a lot of talking, we decided that we will be very cautios with the ultrasound and the doppler and only use it as “medically necessary” like FDA advises ( actually FDA itself says that there IS some effect on the fetus from the ultrasound, so it should be used wisely), but we won’t completely cut it out, like our initial desire was after reading about some of the studies.

          This is the particular article that cited the studies that could cause some concern:

  • Reply
    June 20, 2011 at 7:09 PM

    Personally, I wouldn’t use it. It’s a medical device best left to professionals. I like to err on the side of caution and not take unnecessary risks when I’m pregnant. Does your doctor have an opinion on dopplers? Besides, hearing the heartbeat isn’t a guarantee and really doesn’t mean anything. What’s meant to be, will be.

    I’m also curious–do you plan to use cloth diapers? You may want to research all the harmful chemicals and pollutants in disposable diapers, not to mention their huge impact on our environment. After I learned how dangerous disposable diapers are to baby’s skin (thier largest organ after all), there’s no way I could use them without feeling like I was slowly poisioning my son. Just some food for thought. You seem very concerned about the health and well-being of your family and diapers may not be something you’ve considered.

    • Reply
      Elena @ Art of Making a Baby
      June 22, 2011 at 2:19 PM

      Doctors seem to be ok with dopplers, as long as it doesn’t cause additional anxiety, which in our case wouldn’t.

      As far as cloth diapering, I have thought about it. I like the idea, but I haven’t really researched much about the benefits. Something tells me once I do, I’ll feel very strongly about cloth diapering.

      • Reply
        June 23, 2011 at 12:48 PM

        I was going to ask you if you had thought about cloth diapering, as well. We didn’t cloth diaper with our son, but are cloth diapering our daughter. We absolutely love it! I feel so much better about putting cloth on our baby than disposables that are full of chemicals. I only wish I had educated myself about the benefits of cloth when my son was a baby!

        • Reply
          Elena @ Art of Making a Baby
          June 23, 2011 at 2:10 PM

          It’s good to hear things like that from people who tried both.

          How about maintenance? is it really difficult keeping diapers clean and having enough of them. We’re not soo good about cleaning and laundry 🙂 lol

          • Leticia
            June 23, 2011 at 5:57 PM

            Well, you do have to keep up with the laundry, that’s for sure! But you’ll be doing a lot of that anyway with a newborn. I wash every other day, just dump them in with a scoop of detergent and air dry. A good place to start your research is or I think it’s something that will really appeal to you, once you look into it. I used disposables on my older son and really wish I had learned more about cloth.

          • Elena @ Art of Making a Baby
            June 23, 2011 at 6:04 PM

            Thanks for the links, I’ll definitely check them out.
            What about the poop on the diapers, do you rinse it somehow? I remember discussing it with hubby a while ago and he was a bit freaked out by the idea of throwing actual poppy diapers into the wash? Do they have disposable liners or anything like that?

  • Reply
    June 21, 2011 at 2:51 AM

    wow, where have i been? i didn’t even know you were pregnant! huge congrats to you guys 🙂
    that sanctuary is gorgeous… what a great place for walks with baby!!

  • Reply
    June 21, 2011 at 11:19 AM

    I know about the doppler but, never used it and don’t know enough about the facts to give any advice…I’ve heard things but, couldn’t say if they are fact or opinion. Always go with your gut. That is the best advice I’ve ever been given. 🙂

    That nature trail looks SOOOO beautiful. I really thrive in places like that. I feel so peaceful and calmed in nature. The pictures are beautiful!

    • Reply
      Elena @ Art of Making a Baby
      June 22, 2011 at 2:32 PM

      I know! I love the outdoors, I could so live there.

      I think we’ll take it easy with the doppler, and the ultrasounds…use them but not abuse them.

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