My Pregnancy Update

Hello everyone! How are you? I'm doing great! Today I'm off to the farmers' market to buy some lovely "props" for my home - tomorrow and Friday we are doing shoots here for my next book which releases on my birthday next year, March 21, so I have to get the photos in asap so they make the book. I've been too ill up until now to style and shoot anything, so I'm glad my head is above water enough so I can work. This is such an important book to me - it's going to be really unique and full of color, I just know that you will love it. plants

Leslie Shewring and I have been working non-stop since May - so we're about ready to wrap it up now and move on to other projects - so we're in the twilight stages. We just can't wait to see it in the upcoming months printed and ready to go out into the world. Next year will be an exciting time for me with a new baby arriving in January, a book in March and then a book launch party in London in May with some book tours and stuff to follow. I really want to bring the baby to the launch party in London - though it will be so tiny, I think it would be wonderful to share something so special with someone so special - and to have the baby meet everyone and be in one of my favorite cities - bliss! I have so many dear friends in London, I'd love to share the joy and also to meet my uncle who lives nearby. So we'll see. It's only a 50 minute flight and depending on the baby's sleep schedule, we'll know by May whether or not a plane ride is feasible and good for the health of the little one. If not, no problem - I'll leave little cutie with daddy and escape for a day or two on my own. We'll just have to see how I feel and where I'm at in May. Still a long way off...

Oh and by the way... My ultrasound yesterday went wonderfully and we found out that though I'm still not gaining any weight, the baby is growing and is the right size, kicking around and doing so beautifully. My doctor said the growth is perfect according to the charts. Yay! I'm not nearly as nauseous (though I still have nausea) either, which is such a relief. I laugh because I thought by now I'd be a beached whale but I lost 20 lbs and look great - though it's obvious when you look at my stomach that I'm pregnant. The doctor thinks she knows the gender but wasn't sure because of the position the baby was in during the u/s - so we will know when I have the 3D u/s in two weeks during my 21st week. I have to say, Germans have no problem giving regular ultrasounds - I think I've had 5 already and I'm only 19 weeks! Here you have to see your doctor every 4 weeks and then towards the end of December, I'll have to go weekly. They monitor pregnancy closely here and watch for every possible sign of problems. What she predicts though, gender-wise, made me smile because I've had this funny intuition from the start that came naturally but I'm happy either way so I don't care what the gender is. My mother didn't know when I was born if I'd be a boy or girl, but she knew instinctively that she was having a girl so when I was born and the nurse told my mother, "It's a girl!", she said she replied, "I know, and her name is Holly Elizabeth". She said the nurse was surprised and my mother told her she knew from the first day she found out she was pregnant. Funny! When it comes to gender, maybe I would care if I already had children and for instance, had 3 boys - I may want a girl. Or vice versa. But when it's your first, how can you really have a strong preference either way? I just want a healthy child who is happy and who thrives in our home. I know that even u/s can be inaccurate with determining the gender, so I've decided to go neutral in the nursery so that if there are any surprises at birth, I can swap out accent colors and not be bothered with it. And that works for me because that's my design style in the rest of the house anyway.

I'm also planning to buy clothing that can go either way, boy or girl, so I have the necessities at the hospital to wrap my little bundle in so if there is a surprise, we are prepared and not putting a girl in a boy's outfit or a boy in a little Liberty dress. Though, hey, anything goes these days right?! It will be the dead of winter so I'll need to bring a few things to the hospital though so the baby has proper attire. I'm not a big planner and tend to be really spontaneous, so I have to admit that thinking ahead about any of this is a trip for me - I'm just not a planner type, but I guess this will come with parenting and also with parenting in Germany where everything is timed with precision and planned so expertly. Up until now though, I'm pretty relaxed about the whole thing. Plus, I have a wonderful midwife so I have an expert to go to for all of my questions because though internet opinions are well-intended, I am keeping my circle pretty tight when it comes to who I'm listening to when it comes to advice. And thank god because the internet is full of wannabe medical experts!

I want to wish you a lovely day - I'll be back with some more posts later on. I have a new recipe for a delicious Fig and Raspberry Frangipane Tart to share from Jillian Leiboff, a second recipe and video to share from Liz & Jewels, a new contributor to tell you about whom I've signed on for a year to do home tours on decor8, and lots more to talk about. See you later! xo

(image: holly becker)