Bread belongs in its own styrofoam bread-sized carrying case
The answers! Sort of!

With our powers combined, the answers shall be found

I've got a few questions for you fine people of the Internet. First, before I forget, a newly pregnant friend of mine emailed to ask if I had any recommendations for pregnancy books. Since I know she is not interested in hearing STAY AWAY FROM THE PREGNANCY BOOKS! I thought I'd ask you all if you had any suggestions. So! First question! What pregnancy books do you recommend? I have a few, all borrowed from the previously pregnant. I've never opened the What To Expect book. I thumbed through The Mother of All Pregnancy Books. And I have one of those week by week books that I like because there's an illustration for each week, and that I hate because it seems kind of outdated. Other than that, I haven't delved much into the Pregnancy Genre. I did appreciate The Big Book of Birth by Erica Lyon (recommended by Moxie, natch) and I wish I'd read something about breastfeeding (ANTYHING, my God, I was so clueless), but I pretty much got all my pertinent info from The Internet.

Next question! Is your kid allergic to eggs? Note: if you reply in the affirmative, you must also add something to the effect of It's No Big Thing. Got it? I've been giving Jack eggs, whites and all, since about 10 months. There are no food allergies in either of our families and I honestly haven't paid much attention to all the Food Rules. I never noticed anything when feeding him eggs, but a few weeks ago Phillip said that he thought Jack was allergic. As evidence he pointed out some little red spots and bumps around his mouth. Since Jack has Weirdish Skin and constantly has something reddish and/or bumpy on his face, I was slow to accuse eggs. Eggs are EASY, people. I don't know about you, but the solid food adventure has been a bumpy road for us. It takes him forever and a day to swallow anything not pureed beyond recognition (although he's improving at a quick rate these days) and then there's the whole "What do I feed you for lunch TODAY?" Things are improving, like I said, but for a month or two there it was one of my Top Annoyances. But eggs! Easy to chew, easy to make, nutritious, he loves them... Anyway, the other night we gave him a little omelette for dinner (since the onset of The Plague, he was getting eggs for dinner pretty often) and OH MY GOODNESS. Red splotches all OVER his face. And if he touched the egg with his fingers and touched his face, an immediate red blotch would show up. Ugh. Terrible! We took away the eggs and within about 15 minutes the splotchiness had disappeared completely. I did some quick online reading about food allergies, enough to properly freak myself out, and have decided to wait until his one year appointment to have an actual cow. In the meantime, no more eggs. (Things that contain eggs don't seem to be a problem. Yet.)

Moving on! This one is going to make you snort, possibly guffaw, and is along the lines of my idiocy when it came to the magic high chair, but! Those of you with a one napper and/or two kids- how do you take a shower? I'm SERIOUS. If the answer is "pack 'n play" then I need to figure out where I'm going to put the new baby when I take a shower (a swing in our bedroom? Bouncy seat?) because the pack 'n play is going to be the new baby's bed. The shower is non-negotiable folks. My lack of a shower during The Plague was nearly as bad as The Plague itself.

Yesterday I had my monthly doctor appointment. I continue to adore my doctor (who scurried into my room out of breath and apologizing up and down for being late and falling all over herself with sympathy when I told her about The Plague and gah, could she BE any cuter?) but I hate hate hate her office. HATE. I know quite a few people who go to this particular office and who all seem to love it, but I can't stand it. The receptionist acts like standing in front of her counter and waiting to check in is an affront to her personal space. I cannot STAND the nurse, who is still the opposite of discreet and sensitive, who makes me feel like a commodity and who seemed to get sort of bent out of shape when I said (politely, I thought) "Actually, it's Maggie, I go by Maggie." (Tangent: I've had two or three people tell me that if they have a girl they're considering the name Margaret. WHY? WHYYYYY? And I can say that because it's MY NAME.) I don't know. I miss my family practice clinic and my family practice nurse and how it wasn't automatically assumed that something was being done with my reproductive system while sitting in the waiting room. BUT. Perhaps this is just ME. And so I ask you, it's not worth switching to another clinic, is it? Being that I love my doctor? I know. Stupid question. BUT SOMETIMES I REALLY WANT TO.

And speaking of names, WHAT DO WE NAME THIS BABY? This is a serious question, people. I had a boy name all ready to go, but the girl names are stumping me. Something classic, something solid, something pretty, something different but not TOO different... Sigh.

Comments

Jen

I hated the What to Expect book. It was a very boring read. I thought it was poorly written too. I would go with some books that are more personal story based, though I don't have any to suggest personally.

My mom left me on the bathmat when she took a shower.

Jeannie

Hi Maggie, I love how you bolded all the questions :-)
1)The only book I read when I was pregnant was the What to Expect book. I have a short attention span so the short chapters and Q&A format was nice. The index is very helpful too. It's really a reference book and not a novel! (We also have the What to Expect the First Year one.)
2)Don't know yet. I've read that you're not suppose to give before 1 year old the whole egg, just egg yolks.
3)BabyBjörn Baby Sitter 1-2-3 It costs more than an adult chair but we couldn't live without it!
4)See if you can find another good doctor or just ignore the nurse.
5)How about Olivia?

Carolyn

Evelyn is our girl name. (but you can use it!) Classic, not too popular, very elegant. My cousins' kid is named Elanor, which I also love.

Liz

I HATE the "what to expect" book. For the record, my doctor told me she hates it too. I have checked out just about every pregnancy book the public library has to offer (I'm up to birthing books instead of just pregnancy now), and the only one I've consistently loved is the week-by-week one. Informative enough, and I get other questions answered by the internet too. I found From Conception to Birth interesting too. With pictures. You'd hate it, Maggie.

Also, I have the love my doctor, hate her nurse dilemma. But I wouldn't give my doctor up for anything now, she's lovely. If I can take deep breaths & pray for patience up through the nurse's part, it's smooth sailing.

Hmmmm. I have to not weigh in on the baby name, because I'd end up giving you all of our choices! :) But I'll read your comments and maybe glean some ideas of my own!! hahahaha.

AmericanFamily

L was allergic to eggs around age 1. If she ate plain eggs, she immediately (like within 10 minutes) developed eczema all over her cheeks. Once we figured it out, we stopped giving her eggs, though small amounts in baked goods didn't seem to bother her.

I finally got her to an allergist at around 18 months and was shocked to discover she had no egg allergy. No allergies to anything else either.

I looked like an idiot because I was swearing up and down that she got eczema. The allergist said she probably outgrew the allergy. Or maybe he thought I had Munchausen by Proxy and he was just humoring me.

blog nerd

I like the name Monica. Jim doesn't like it so its a no go over here.

Shower? Exersaucer and Sesame Street. Or I wake up before Jim leaves for work and grab one then.

Or Grandma and Grandpa.

Kate P

Oh, yeah, my mom makes tons of eggs for my niece and nephews. Cook up easily and go down easily. Although I suspect my niece has another food allergy--possibly milk, like me. My childhood friend had an egg allergy when we were kids, but by the time she was a teenager she'd grown out of it. So here's hoping it's a minor sensitivity for Jack.

The only thing I can weigh in on is the baby names, mostly b/c if the pastor is doing my nephew's baptism on Sunday we might get a short talk on the importance of names (a.k.a. the "Please don't name your child 'Rainbow' talk). Seriously, though, our pastor is great and I love his suggestion of naming your children after not just saints but also people who were good models and influences on you, and that you can tell your kids about. (I secretly was very happy when my brother had another son--Clare, my late grandmother's name, is still potentially mine!!!)

Elizabeth

I read the What To Expect, but not all the way through, I just looked things up in the index.
For the shower - first the baby sat in his bouncer, then he sat in his walker, now he sits in the bottom of the shower while I take one. Bonus? I don't have to give him a bath later that day.
There's always the name Elizabeth :)
I am not going to give you all my good girl names though.
I've pretty much considered every name here though, at some time or another.
http://www.serenaandlily.com/Nursery/Crib-Bedding

Shanna

Okay, the best prego book that I read was Great Expectations. It is a week by week, complete with product recommendations and info for after the baby is born. The book is funny and current and informative without being scary. I read a number of pregnancy books and my hubby had to ban them because I was getting myself all worked up over nothing. I mean some of those books are so clinical you think the epidural is going to kill you. But Great Expectations gives you all the facts without all the fear. I loved it! Also, my sister still has weird reactions to eggs from time to time but is not technically allergic. She can eat egg in other things but make her eggs for breakfast and her teeth hurt (weird, I know). I wouldn't worry about it too much. Maybe try Egg Beaters or another processed egg type thingy for the health and convenience factor but if that still gives you problems switch to pancakes. You can get kid friendly shapes and sizes that you just pop in the microwave for when you are short on time. Organic brands too! Oh and the shower, I would think an exersaucer or bouncy chair somewhere with entertainment (a cute show, Jack playing). Either that or switch to night time showers before bed, you can get lots of relax-y, spa type products and take a soothing shower once the kids are asleep. It helps you get a restful night too! Try anything scented with lavender, it helps enduce sleep!

Rosemary

Clara? (Clare's really popular but Clara's not but it's not out there. Very pretty.)

Monica is very nice, like the blog nerd said.

Sarah? It seems like I don't know any little girls named Sarah any more. Great Old Testament figure too.

And what about Rose? It seems like such a lovely name to me but I really don't know any Roses. I'm not just saying that b/c my name is Rosemary.

Pippi

No help with the other questions, but my friend just named her girl Abigail which I like. I'm also fond of Mary. It's certainly a classic, but no one seems to name babies Mary anymore.

Maureen

I liked the Mayo Clinic Guide better than What To Expect for some reason. I think it's the handy "Should you call your doctor?" table at the back of each chapter.

Egg allergy is a pain, but no big deal. Try cottage cheese. It has the same consistency as scrambled eggs and some protein and calcium and... stuff. It's nutritious!

By the time #2 comes along, Jack may be entertained by Blue's Clues or some such; put the baby in the bouncy seat in the bathroom and park Jack on the couch.

I don't think I'd switch if I liked the doctor, but you have my sympathies.

How 'bout Maureen? I hardly know any Maureens, and I've always liked it. Or Bridget. Or Bernadette. Or Aisling, since I've apparently decided your baby should have a somewhat incongruous Irish name. :) (I "Aisling" is pronounced "Ashley," I think. I read it in a Maeve Binchy book, and I don't actually like it.) I also love the name Elizabeth.

Shelby

No advice, except for throwing out baby names. How about Charlotte? Or Alice? Samantha?

I tell you, when I first read all the Anne of Green Gables books, I was totally going to name a daughter Marilla and call her Rilla, like Anne does her youngest daughter. My husband isn't exactly on board, though.

Shanna

Ooooh, I forgot about names!! How about Morgan or Madison? I also love Riley and Samantha (would be great for a girly girl or a tomboy). We are going to name our daughter Ava (no we are not expecting but I fully intend to invent some genetic changer pill to gaurantee a baby of the female variety). I'm just kidding of course! But really Ava or Eva is really pretty and unique but not weird. Oh and Daniella, my sisters name is Danielle but we always used to pretend that she was more exotic and that her name was Daniella! Hope my rambling helps! Plus, keep your doctor! It is so hard to find a great gyno, I love my current one but she doesn't accept my new insurance so I have to switch. I am seriously considering selling many of my husbands belongings to finance my doctor visits!

Sarah

1. I hated What to Expect too. When I read it, the basic gist was during this month, you can expect yada, yada, yada, and THIS IS THE HORRIBLE TRAGIC THING THAT COULD HAPPEN TO YOUR BABY THIS MONTH TOO. So, I don't recommend that. The books I would recommend (Ina May Gaskin's) are pretty hardcore homebirth/natural birth stuff and may not be for everyone.

2. Not a clue about the eggs, although does anyone want to discuss what a dairy intolerance might look like (permanent runny nose??)??

3. Babyproof the bathroom and give free reign. We started with the bouncy seat, but now he just crawls around on the floor.

4. If you've got a good doctor, I'd stick with her, but there's a huge doctor shortage in our area, so I'm biased.

5. I LOVE the name Grace although it's becoming common. I have a special meaning behind it though. Also, if you use that, you can't move to Ontario, Canada and live near me because I will be using it someday!

Apparently I've got lots of opinions today; want any other advice?

Nessa

No idea on the allergies or the pregnancy books. But names? Oh I am queen on names.
Our definite girl name is Olivia Kathryn, but here are some of our runner ups:

Hannah
Abbigail
Claire
Elizabeth(Libby)
Ella
Kathryn
Reese
Sarah (Love this name)

Don't forget to ask Swistle!

Charlotte

I'm useless when it comes to all of the questions but the last one. I'll second the Charlotte recommendation, it's a good nickname name. Charlie is more tomboy-ish, there's also Lottie, Charles or Lola. I'm called all of the above depending on the person, especially Charles.

Although, I'm a huge fan of naming children after people who mean a lot to you. Authors and book characters being my favourite inspiration. I'm named for Charlotte Perkins Gilman, the feminist writer. You love to read and took tons of English classes in college. I'm sure that there is an author or character who speaks to you to the most, find her and it'll all fit together.

I love Frances, because of Franny and Zooey. Maybe Nelle, which is Harper Lee's actual first name. She only went by Harper since people would mispronounce her name as Nelly. Anyway, you have a bit of time to bat names around, I'm sure you'll find a good one.

Dooneybug

My sister-in-law has all my pregnancy books right now and I can't remember the names of them to tell you what's good. I know that The Womanly Art of Breastfeeding is EXCELLENT and I would recommend that to all women who plan to nurse.

My son won't even eat eggs so I have no clue if he's allergic to them. And my daughter is too young yet. But I do pity you if he is allergic to them!

Showers are usually taken at night when both kids are sleeping and/or whenever my husband is home and I have time to do it. Sad, but true. I know you must have your showers so I would suggest putting the baby in some kind of baby container and letting Jack just hang out in his room while you do a quick shower. Also, my daughter slept in the pack n play for the first 6 months of her life before we moved my son out of the crib into a regular twin bed.

I completely get the whole "love the doctor, hate the rest" bit because I have that situation too. Both with my ob/gyn and the kids' pediatrician. I can't stand the clinic in general but the doctors are great. So, we keep our doctors and put up with the other idiots.

I'm so bad at naming other people's kids. Don't worry, you'll figure it out!

Lisa

One of my close friends has a little boy, and when he was around a year old or a little more, they discovered this very same allergy. Red dots all around his mouth when he ate eggs. But things with eggs (like baked goods) are no problem. I don't know if it ever disappeared (he's almost six, so maybe he's outgrown it), but he did have the same problem.

As for names, I had all kinds of cute ones picked out that got vetoed when we names Olivia, and we thought we were being all unique and feminine, and then the week after she was born we found out that thirteen other people we know either have had or just had a baby and named her Olivia. Grrr...

So, for our next one, if it's a girl, I was thinking of something way out of the ordinary, like Calliope, which can be shortened to Callie or something sweet like that. My hubby would never go for it, but it would totally be unique. I think.

Some classics I love that were vetoed: Evelyn, Penelope, Anna, Helen.

There's my two cents.

annie

While I've hardly touched a pregnancy book this time around, they were really my best friend during pregnancy #1. Actually, I'm pretty sure I was reading as soon as we got married! I did like the "What to Expect" books - they are informative in many ways, although sometimes a little too informative. I read "The Baby Book" by Dr. Sears. Also informative, although that was the book that really confirmed for me that each of these authors really does have their own bias and their own style...this one is very pro-attachment parenting and anti everything else. (just fyi). My favorite books, though, were "The Girlfriends Guide to Pregnancy," which is just frivolous and silly, but a fun read and quite informative. And I LOVED "The Morning Sickness Companion." I as so sick during that first pregnancy that it just made me feel better to commiserate with someone else who had gone through it....even if it was just by reading her book.

As for the doctor - it depends how much you LOVE the doctor, I think, weighed against how much you hate the office. If it's really miserable to go in there, then maybe you should consider a change....but, boy, having a doctor you love. That's a hot commodity.

OH. And the sleeping. Baby #2 will be sleeping in the pak-n-play as well, and we're keeping Christopher in his (now modified after last night's flying leap...) crib. I'm planning to get him a bed for his 2nd birthday in September and starting the however-long-or-short transition at that time. Like you, I have no idea what to do about shower time or nap time...mostly, what to do with the newborn while I'm trying to get the toddler down for his nap. But, I figure that moms have been doing this for a loooong time. They all figured it out. So will I. And so will you.

...but I promise to let you in on the secret if I do figure it out...

annie

Oh. And I love the name Hannah. Our girl name during the first pregnancy was Emma, which I've always loved. I have to admit, though, that I was so relieved when I found out that Christopher was a boy because I was dreading my poor Emma having the same name as four or five other girls in her class! This time around our girl name was Katherine, and we were going to call her Kate. I LOVE that one. But, again, at our ultrasound when we found out it was a boy, I was relieved! I KNEW that everyone was going to call her KatIE, which, honestly is not my favorite. Kate I like - it's strong and graceful at the same time. While I was teaching I would have 3-4 KatIes in one class period alone. I love the strong, but classic traditional names. Are you guys into family names? We avoided that like the plague, but there's always a good pool of names among grand and great grandparents...

Erin

I love the name Stella. My husband, not so much. And it is an old name, so you may hate it. Anyway now we have a little girl named Ella, so I can't ever use the name Stella or I'd have two kids named Stella and Ella. I think it's unique but cute and good associations - it makes me think of the stars, because of similarity to the word stellar.

Kimberly

My utmost favorite pregnancy book is "The Girlfriends' Guide to Pregnancy" by Vicki Iovine. I actually read this book (cover to cover) after the birth of my first kid. I laughed much of the way through and kept saying, "yep," "uh-huh," and "Oh, I so remember that" all the way through it. She is honest and forthright about all the goods and not so goods of pregnancy and birthing. (She has a few others on "Surviving the First Year," and one on toddlers.)

My kid had/has an allergy to tomatoes. I say had/has because one week she would break out in horrible, angry hives from head to toe if she ate anything with a tomato or tomato product for three days. It was a sad, sad day for us. We are pizza and spaghetti (talk about easy to make for dinner) eating type people, not to mention grilled cheese without tomato soup is just not natural. But a few months without anything with a tomato in it she seems fine. Give it some time and just be glad he's not allergic to dairy.

Bathing: if your need to bathe out weighs your need to sleep then do it while they are both asleep. If I could pass on only one bit of advice when having two kids GET THEM ON THE SAME NAP SCHEDULE!!!!! I know your little one is on a bit of a nap strike, but don't give up. Set a routine (i.e. everybody naps right after lunch, NO MATTER WHAT OR WHERE YOU ARE and take a shower or nap then. If that doesn't work may I suggest showering while #2 is sleeping and put #1 in some sort of baby containment (pack and play, exer-saucer, jumper, high-chair with snacks) or bring #1 along with you. I find the last option to be the lesser of all the options considering that taking a shower alone may be the only 5 minutes you get without someone grabbing, sucking, touching, climbing, crawling, drooling, spitting up, pawing you that you may have all day. Or in the morning before your husband leaves for work or at night when they are either asleep or your husband can have nice quality time with the little ones and you can have a 15 minute shower without someone pawing at you.

You really seem to like your doctor and it's the receptionist/nurse that bugs you to no end. If it's really bad say something to the doctor about her attitude. But if the whole experience outweighs how much you like the doctor it may be time to switch. But one question you need to ask yourself is is this doctors competence in the event of an emergency or time of stress worth the hassle of everything else. I would much rather have a doctor that I trust with the well being of my baby and myself over their support staff's shortcomings. They aren't the one who's delivering my baby.

As for names, I got nothing. I too struggle with names. With my first one I had a list 5+ names long for each sex. With the second I hated all those names and had had to do the baby name book thing and only got to the "g" names of the girls and didn't even look at the boy names...good thing #2 was a girl and I had found only one name I liked the "a" section.

Sorry this is so long, but as a mom of two I seem to have a lot to say. :~)

jackie

I liked "The Unoffical Guide to having a Baby". by the author of "The mother of all pregnancy books", just so ya know.

Not allergic to eggs, but hates them, which is intensely disappointing.

We do pack and play for showers with Nay. Doesn't your pack and play have a little bassinet for baby sleeping? In that case you could take the bassinet out, and put Jack in the bottom, and new baby in bouncy seat while you shower. Also, do you have a bumbo seat or bebepod? I used that for Nay while I showered until she could get out herself. Jack may be past that age, but you can try. Also we went through a phase where I sat her upright in the baby bathtub and let her play with her bath toys, just without any water, right outside our own shower. That was between bouncy seat and BebePod phase.

Good luck!

jackie

Also, similarly, we LOVE our pediatrician, but his nurse who sees us when he's not there (or during well-visits) is a big jerk. The ped. staff is great, but the front office folks are a little standoffish. I wish I could tell you what to do, but we're in a similar situation!

Kris

First time commenter, I love Kate!!

Kim

I love your posts - been reading them often. First time I'm writing. I had a girl's name picked out which I LOVED, but I now have 3 boys. (stop laughing!) And we did pretty good with the different, but not weird names - Spencer, Noah, Emmett.

The girl's name was Paige. And, you're going to think this is funny, but Margaret would have been her middle name (for my Nana).

Good luck!

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