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171539590_05dbfbfdf1_m.jpgHere’s a picture of what our little one would look like if we were taking pictures of it.  (We are just letting it grow in there by itself, but it’s neat to know how everything is coming by looking at other babies!)  It’s pretty hard to believe that in only 14 weeks our little bundle of joy will be here for us to hold and snuggle!  It’s true though, 2 trimesters down and only one to go.  This week the baby is mostly just growing.  Of that growth, there’s quite a lot going on in the brain area.  For the next month the forebrain (right behind the forehead) will be enlarging to cover all the other developed brain structures, while still maintaining its hemisphere divisions.  If we could measure the brain wave patterns they would be similar to what they will be when born now that there is much processing of visual and auditory information.This week the baby will grow a 1/2 an inch to reach almost 14 1/2 inches long and enough weight to just barely reach 2 pounds!  That’s about the distance from the back of the average man’s elbow to the bottom of his hand.  Boy!  This kid is growin!  The little muscles are growing too, I can now tell when the baby is asleep or awake because it moves pretty consistently when awake.  Also, some days it has lots of energy and some days it rests more.  And, the rest days definitely follow the active days :).  Last week was critical in the development of the lungs and now there are enough air sacs present for the baby to breath on its own if it had to.  By the time the baby is born there will be about 50 million tiny  air sacs in the lungs.  Even so, these represent a mere 5% of what will be present in adult lungs.  95% of the sacs form between birth and age 8.   And, that’s it for our little baby Jordan this week.  Everything’s growing right on schedule and baby, mom & dad are all happy, excited and looking forward to spending time together on the out side of things!  

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Only one more week till I enter 3rd Trimester.  Seems this whole process is going quite quickly and we will have a little Quandt in the family very, very soon!  Nesting is going well.  In my attempt to get everything painted before entry into the 3rd trimester, we have painted 3 rooms in the house and only have one left to go, the baby’s room!  It is all organized in there now and ready to put everything in the center and get out the brushes.  We’re doing a mural so it’s a bit more complex than the others. 

Little Jordan must be eagerly anticipating it because wowsers, has there been a lot of movement these days!  We went to see Les Miserables and the baby was awake and kicking the entire time.  This little one LOVES the opera!  We are enjoying that it can hear now and seeing the difference it makes in relating to it.  Also, our little one will wake up on getting squished or poked too much and kick back against our nudges.  That’s fun!   

This week the nostrils have begun to open and if we could see inside we’d be able to note breathing movements going on to prepare for being born and getting to use those lungs where the little air sacs (alveoli) begin to develop this week.  (the alveoli will continue to develop until little Jordan is NINE years old!).  By the end of this week it is normal for breathing to be possible through some of the alveoli that have developed at the ends of the bronchial tubes and the lungs that will be well supplied with blood.  Also, the membrane that separates the air sacs from the capillaries has thinned out enough to allow some oxygen-carbon dioxide exchange.  The surfactant that the baby’s lungs began secreting continues to keep the lung tissue from sticking to itself and allow the air sacs to inflate. 

Over the next four days, brain wave activity will begin for the visual and auditory systems.  As it receives messages it gives a chance to process information and start practicing interpreting.  The eyebrows & eyelashes can be seen now and the fingernails and toenails are noticeable.  While our little one is still small and lean, growth is definitely taking place, it rings in at almost 2 pounds now and at least 9 inches long!  Keep growing in there Jordan!

Our tiny baby is in the process of turning pink this week.  Seems very appropriate for out little one to turn pink the very week that we have just painted our bedroom ceiling with a lovely shade closely matching the pink/flesh tone of our skin in preparation for a pleasant arrival for our the little darling.  The cause for the pink color (in the baby, not the bedroom) is the development of the smallest of the blood vessels called capillaries under the skin.   Also, the blood vessels in the lungs are forming.  These will allow blood to flow through the lungs and intercept the oxygen and circulate it to the baby’s tissue after it’s born.  This should be easy enough because also this week the perfectly formed little nostrils (I hope it has Chris’ nose 🙂 )begin to open.  They have been plugged until now. And, under that cute little nose the buds for our baby’s permanent teeth will start to come in.  Already the baby teeth buds have formed but the adult teeth buds will come in high above and behind those.  Along with the teeth buds the parts of the spine are really taking shape beginning this week and continuing on for about a month.  There are 33 rings, 150 joints & 1,000 ligaments involved to support the body’s weight which are all under construction now.  Good thing, because this baby is growing fast now.  Since last week it’s grown an entire inch and a 1/2 to now measure 13.62 inches and weighs in at almost one and a half pounds at 1.46lbs!   I am feeling great again this week.  With the nice hot weather of summer I’ve been having a bit more trouble getting enough water in me to keep this little one hydrated.  The amniotic fluid that surrounds the baby is now removed every three hours and completely replaced!  This total daily exchange is equivalent to six gallons in volume!  That’s a lot of recycling which calls for a lot of refreshing!   I’ve been distracted some days with all the preparations for it’s arrival making drinking so much even harder.  We now have three rooms painted and only one to go before I feel ready for this little one to arrive.  We cleaned the garage out to make extra storage space for our growing family and all that is left is to somehow combine the “laundry room” with all the “baby’s room” stuff.  I’ve never heard of an ironing board cover that matches the baby curtains and bedding but I think we’re in for a first.  Who wants to iron in the garage, especially not with a cute little baby in the house!  All is going well, it’s super exciting to be able to feel little Jordan wiggling around in there while we make preparations for the arrival, and, nice to have a little one to chat with too 🙂  We continue to look forward to welcoming our little dear into our home!  

Our beloved little one is getting more cramped this week.  We can wake it up now by pushing on it, it responds by pushing back and kicking us as though it’s annoyed that we are further cramping its style.  We have fun with that.  It’s neat to have the baby already responding to us by making its needs known.  Also neat to be the sole provider for meeting its needs.  As its mother, I and I alone, can provide it with the protection and safety that it needs.  What an awesome responsibility.  I already love caring for my little cargo, I love being with it and giving it the best I can.  It’s made going to the farmers market for fresh fruits & veggies a whole new joy in my life knowing that I’m nourishing a tiny life so that it can be the healthiest and strongest possible.  So fun.  When you look at the benefits you are providing for another person’s life everything takes on a whole new outlook.  On those fresh fruits & veggies baby Jordan will grow no less than 6 ounces this week.  

Though the skin is still wrinkled and transparent because it’s so thin each week’s growth of muscle tissue and the addition of body fat will start to cover up the bones, organs and blood vessels that are showing through now.  Jordan has almost 12 inches of length now from crown to foot and is about a pound and a 1/3 of person inside me.  So, if you’ve got someone around who’s about 6 feet tall our little baby could be laid down from his toe to heel and be just about the same length!  Amazing how big it’s growing!!

We visited the midwives this week and got to feel where the baby is.  Just as I suspected, the head is already down (which they said will probably stay that way now as it’s the heaviest part of the baby) and its back is over on my left side.  That puts tiny arms and hands tickling my lower middle and the little feet kicking my right side.  It’s been pretty consistent as to where the wiggles are coming from but it was also fun to be able to feel with the help of the midwives, the long back and poky butt sticking right up into the air at the top.  When I went in the baby was asleep but we woke it up with all our pokes and then she could hardly hear the heartbeat for all the squirming that was going on.  It was funny to feel it push back against the stethoscope until she found a place that was out of its reach where she could listen and count the heartbeats.  Little Jordan’s heart beats at about 156-160 beats per minute now.  According to the old wives, that means it’s a girl.  Though, I took an old wives survey with all the old wives tales compiled and answered with more boy traits than girl.  We’re thinking it’s probably a 50/50 chance either boy, or girl.  🙂

I absolutely LOVE being pregnant.  I adore this little child growing inside of me and I LOVE sharing in its life!  This week it will be able to hear me and all of those around me as the tiny hammer, anvil & stirrup bones in the inner ear will be hardening up.  That’s encouraging since I love chatting with the little one all the time now.  

This is a pretty big month for weight gain and by the end of the next four weeks it will have doubled in size.  I’m watching what I eat carefully so it gets plenty of healthy fruits and veggies as I’m making a very concerted effort to make sure mom doesn’t double in size over the next month!  Watching one’s weight gain is a bit of a challenge as I’ve never had a moving target for the prescribed weight.  I ended up dividing up the rest of the weight I have to gain on the low side and the high side into two weekly targets and then I can see if I’m close to that at the end of each week rather than just hoping it’s all baby and not too much…butt.  That way, if I’m going over the high target I can work on cutting out a portion or two of icecream, etc.  Hopefully, the weight I am gaining will be going to that lovely brown fat that the baby is storing in its neck, chest & crotch area which produces heat for it.  I’m pretty sure its working because there seems to be a TON of heat generating from this little one!  I’ve never been a hot person till now.  What a difference!!

I’ve also had a couple of days when I could really tell my belly was stretching out.  I’m using lots of lotion to keep it soft and stretchy but it’s awfully funny to have ones belly stretch out so definitively.   I like knowing my little one is growing well though, its totally worth it to have a safe home for it to grow in.  I’ll just keep putting on lotion and it can grow as it likes 🙂

This week the baby’s brain is taking off with growth.  Tiny lungs will start to secrete surfactant which will help them inflate but there sure isn’t enough yet to breathe on its own.  The hair & eyebrows will start to show event tough it will be completely unpigmented.  Just little white streaks over the eyes and on the head.  No matter what baby Jordan’s hair color will be in the end…does it have any chance but to be dark brown with us for parents…it will still be colorless now.  It’d be quite a site to see our precious little one this week with hardly any fat and all white hair.  Everything is formed and porportioned almost just as it will be when it’s born now though.   The kicking and squirming continues to get more frequent and stronger.  It amazes me how much this little one wiggles around some days!  What a joy to share it’s life 🙂   This week was the first time I actually got to SEE the baby move for the first time.  Wow, how neat it was to look down at my belly while I was lying down after scrubbing out the shower and see this precious tiny one bumping around in there like crazy.  Must have woke it up with all that scrubbing 🙂

This week little Jordan’s legs will finally start to approach their “baby” proportions.  The heartbeat is growing stronger.  Chris was able to hear it with a stethoscope!  He can also feel it moving now too.  Pastor Don was all excited for his father’s day sermon and the baby was doing quite a circus act inside of me to accompany him.  I thought it was appropriate for the baby to be excited on the day of celebrating its daddy 🙂  I certainly notice that those tiny muscles are developing as periods of quiet alternate with periods of rambuncious activity.  One thing’s for sure, for some reason about 10pm is play time for this baby and it likes to roll around and kick and squirm right when I lay down for bed.  Quality time together already.

I guess it’s natural that its life cycles are being developed as the brain is really taking off in development this week.  The rapid brain growth will continue on until Jordan is 5 so I’m already investigating language & music programs for tots as I’d love to maximize learning during that time.  Also this week the baby’s lungs begin to secrete surfactant.  This substance permits them to inflate.  With the advanced lifesaving equipment which exists today even at under 1 pound, they can often save an infant born in this week.

If the baby’s a boy the testes will have begun their descent from the pelvis this week.  It takes a bit longer than if it’s a girl because everything stays in place with girls.  One way or the other, the same tissue is used so it just migrates in boys.  The tiny eyelids are still fused together but it can make blinking movements and the spine, ribs & long bones of the arms and legs have hardened into bone.  That must be why I’m having to take these LARGE quantities of calcium!  I wish they’d put all the vitamins I need in one capsule instead of having to take soooooo many!  Lots of nutrients needed to grow a baby who is 7 1/2 inches long now and weighs about a pound.  That’s the same as a package of butter.  Next time you’re at the refridgerator, hold the butter and you’ll know how much little Jordan would weigh if we could hold him/her right now!