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Life update: Pregnancy (week 30), basketball, prepping for baby, + my goals for this week

I tried to post my usual pregnancy update over the weekend, but my blog decided it wouldn’t upload any photos. So here I am posting a life update + goals post all in one. We’ll just pretend like this is what I do every week! 😉

30 weeks!! And I can honestly barely believe it!!


We now officially have all the basics for the baby (clothes, diapers/wipes, bed, carrier, car seat, and stroller). And now I’m working on collecting postpartum stuff for me (what are your faves to have on hand for recovery?)

We went ahead and set up the bed in our room this past week and it’s the craziest thing to see it there. (We plan for baby to sleep in our room in a bassinet pack-n-play for at least the first few months — but we’ll see how that goes and are open to tweak our plans if that doesn’t work out well.)


I had another appointment with the OB and everything continues to look great and baby is right on track! I have two more two-week appointments and then we’ll start weekly appointments where they’ll be doing in-depth ultrasounds to make sure everything looks good (because have a tiny bit of higher risks near the end of pregnancy due to my age).

I’m so grateful that I’m still feeling so well despite being this far into my pregnancy. I was usually pretty miserable at this point with my other pregnancies and really struggling to sleep, get comfortable, etc. I feel like the consistency with daily exercise, being super careful about what I’m eating, choosing an attitude of gratitude, really being vigilant about my iron intake, staying busy while also making sure I’m having a good balance of rest and downtime is making such a difference for me.

As Jesse was saying earlier, “This is by far the best pregnancy you’ve ever had!”

I have noticed I’m definitely needing more naps/sleep these days. I usually feel GREAT with 7 hours of sleep, but I’ve been needing at least 8+ hours of sleep the past two weeks to feel rested. So I’ve been trying to sneak in 1-2 short naps throughout the day and that’s made a big difference. (This is when it’s such a blessing that I work from home!)

In other news, as most of you know, I’m currently working on writing a book that is due to my publisher the beginning of July. I set a goal to have the rough draft completely done by April 15 and I’m thrilled to say that I’m on track with my goal!! And I can’t wait to share more about it!!

These two came home from school one day last week to discover that Kaitlynn and I had set the baby bed up (she was home since she hadn’t been fever-free for 24 hours). And I think this whole, “we’re actually having a baby!!” just got really, real to all of us.

It’s hard to describe how surreal all of this is when you had waited and hoped and tried for years, then grieved the devastating loss of being told you’d never being able to have more kids, and finally truly moving to a place of peace and contentment with our family of five.

And now there’s a 30-week-old baby kicking and hiccuping up a storm in my belly, we’re setting up the baby bed, buying baby clothes & diapers, talking about our birth plan, and I’m prepping for maternity leave.

Truly, God is in the business of doing exceedingly abundantly above anything we could ever dream or imagine! I don’t know what the future holds for our family or this child, but I will say that I can’t imagine any child being more wanted or loved or looked forward to.

Also, getting to share this journey with three older kids who are crazy excited about it has been one of the best parts of it all.

Thank you to everyone of you who has been part of this journey, too. It has been humbling to hear from so many of you — many whom I don’t even know! — who have been praying for me, this pregnancy, and this baby. It means the world to me!

I told the kids they had to wait to start counting down to the birth until I got 30 weeks. Welp, here we are. And the countdown is on!!

Note: I know that my sharing of our pregnancy has been very painful for some of you and I just want you to know that if you are grieving a loss or deeply wishing or longing for a child, you are not forgotten. I think of you so, so often. And I would be honored to take time to pray for you today.

One of the hardest parts of this journey has been seeing multiple friends of mine experience loss in recent months. I want you to know that my heart hurts deeply for you.

If you are experiencing infertility or loss and your heart is grieving, I would be honored to stop and pray for you by name today. Just message me or leave me a comment. You don’t need to share details, just ask for prayer and let me know your name.

In other news, Kathrynne’s basketball team took home the Championship win at the Varsity basketball championships last week!!

This was Kathrynne’s first year to play on Varsity and it’s been so fun to see her work so hard, build a lot of confidence, and improve so much over the course of the year.

One of my favorite parts of her being on the basketball team is the relationships she’s building with these amazing girls!

Here’s how I did on my goals last week:

Last Week’s Goals: 2020– Week 7

Personal Goals

1. Get in 54,000 steps total. (I use the FitBit Ulta HR to track my steps every day.) 

2. Read Raising Worry-Free Girls, I Choose Brave, and Get Your Life Back. Listen to Things You Save in a Fire. (I stopped listening to this one because it felt like it was just going to be too “fluffy” and didn’t have enough depth for me.)

3. Go to bed by 10:30 p.m. Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday.

Home/Family Goals

4. Read 30 more pages of Carry a Big Stick aloud as a family.

5. Clean and disinfect the house from flu germs (as soon as the kids are fever-free!).

Work/Blog Goals

6. Finish the rough draft of chapter 5 of my manuscript.

Word of the Year Goals

7. Pop popcorn and watch another classic movie as a family. (We did watch YouTube videos together — does that count??)

8. Go out to dinner with Jesse. (If everyone is well!)

I’m keeping this week’s goals really simple because we are potentially getting a longterm foster placement this week and I want to leave a lot of space open for that. There’s a lot up in the air and it might not pan out, but I want to be prepared if it does.

This Week’s Goals: 2020 —  Week 8

Personal Goals

1. Get in 54,000 steps total. (I use the FitBit Ulta HR to track my steps every day.) 

2. Finish reading Love Idol and Don’t Overthink It. Finish listening to Good Leaders Ask Great Questions.

Home/Family Goals

3. Read 30 more pages of Carry a Big Stick aloud as a family.

4. Get a breast pump (I need to research whether our insurance provides this or not.)

Work/Blog Goals

5. Finish the rough draft of chapter 5 of my manuscript.

Word of the Year Goals

6. Pop popcorn and watch another classic movie as a family. 

What are YOUR goals for this week? How did you do on last week’s goals? Tell us in the comments!

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  • Claire says:

    Hi Crystal, I don’t find your pregnancy posts painful at all; I truly look forward to them each week, and I’m so happy for you! However, I would still be grateful if you would pray for me. I have a history of infertility and miscarriages. I have one living child who we adopted as a newborn, and he is worth everything I’ve gone through. But I still grieve not being able to have more children (at this point, that ship has sailed). So prayers would be greatly appreciated. Thank you!

    • I’m so sorry for your losses and pain. I just stopped and prayed for you, Claire.

      • Claire says:

        Thanks so much Crystal! I really appreciate it.

        • KSH says:

          Crystal, thank you so much for sharing, you’ve been such an inspiration over the years. It’s beautiful to see you gracefully walk through each season you’re in, praise God!
          We are settling into a season of contentment and learning to accept where God has our family. Dealing with infertility, health problems, and the medical diagnosis of not being able to conceive anymore babies is hard at times, but I’m grateful for stories like yours and how God has used it to encourage me. I appreciate your prayers so much. ❤️

  • Cris says:

    I thought I’ve heard insurance companies were covering pumps post ACA.

  • April says:

    I checked the blog multiple times looking for this update! 🙂 I think we are done, so it’s fun to experience pregnancy with you. Er, read about it. I’m not experiencing much. lol

    That looks like a boy pack n play?!! I bought pink sheets for my pack n play when we were having girls. Did you mean to post that clue?!

    • Sorry that it was late! And you’ve got a 50% chance of being right! 🙂 But we mostly bought all gender neutral stuff since we wanted it to be able to used for foster care, too. So no clues here, actually! Although I feel like a lot of the gender neutral stuff tends to lean more toward boy.

  • Jen says:

    I would appreciate your prayers, Crystal. I have been dealing with secondary infertility for 8 years and because of my age, a natural pregnancy is almost impossible. We’ve spent so much money on medical treatments that our finances have become shaky. It’s hard not to be discouraged. Prayer helps a lot!

    • I just stopped and prayed for you, Jen. 8 years is so hard!

    • Julie Smith says:

      Praying for those who are struggling with infertility. ❤️

      I had a decent amount of goals when I wrote them down Sunday, but we’ve had a sick kid and a sick dog, so I’m just going to plug away at what I can and not sweat the rest! (Especially since I’m typing this on Thursday 🤣)

  • Courtney says:

    We’ve been trying for 2 years for our first. Countless tests and medicines, it’s definitely not easy. However, I’ve been enjoying your journey and appreciate you sharing. I also want to thank you for reaching out and being willing to pray for those of us struggling, it can be a long lonely journey.

  • Melissa says:

    My postpartum must have are new underwear (they just make me feel good I buy cheap one so if they get ruined I don’t mind) I hate hospital pads so I bring my own and stock myself up at home with big o overnight pads then a stack of ultra thins and panty liners. I also love earth mama angel baby postpartum items (all of them. I can find them
    Locally at wholefoods) I also enjoy Birth Song Botanicals products (this midwife has a website) I loved a tea from Birds and Bees called Ripe & Ready it was amazing. This may sound crazy but during those first 1-2 Weeks I really take the time to take care of my bottom I find I heal better the more love and care I give

    • Thank you so much for sharing!!

    • Anees says:

      Post partum stuff: I definitely second the laninsoh soothies. They are expensive but don’t go with the cheap brand, no where near as good. These are a godsend when nursing a newborn who is learning.

      Also, don’t wait too long to look into the breast pump. It took mine 6 weeks to get to me and I had to wait two more weeks cuz The one I wanted wasn’t available . I ended up having to rent a pump because I didn’t have mine in time for the baby. (And I am one of those that NEEDS a pump when my milk comes in due to insane milk production)

  • April says:

    Hi Crystal!

    Please don’t cringe. I’m in your mastermind group. This is my glorious blog with nine posts. I am updating them as I just figured out how to blog. lol

    We had four miscarriages between our big kids and a sweet baby. She is such a treasure, and I LOVE the age gap! Prayers for yours!

    This post is perfect for you!

    I updated it tonight, just for you. 🙂

    • Oh! Thanks so much for sharing! There were things on that list that I haven’t seen on other lists. Also, you need to add some affiliate links to the different products you posted! 🙂

  • I just get a big smile on my face every time I see these pregnancy pictures, and read your updates! I love how Jesus answered this prayer! Thank You Jesus for this baby. Please give Crystal peace and strength in these final weeks, and we ask for a smooth and straight-forward delivery.

  • Bridget says:

    I wish you and your family so many good thoughts. You are all so lovely. Please wish the same for our family. We are full of love and short on…everything else 🙂 We have been trying for almost 2 years. Thank you for your good wishes.

  • Charlotte W. says:

    I just want to encourage the folks who have went through years of infertility. It was about 15 years for me and my husband. We finally accepted and moved on to adoption. Yes, there were miscarriages and treatments and so forth.
    At age 46, I finally could call my daughter mine. I now have three toddlers altogether at age 49.
    I can tell you that God does not disappoint. I am truly blessed and God in his goodness and mercy gave us three amazing blessings.

  • Ashley P says:

    My post-partum must-have: padsicles! I received some from another mom who used the same midwife I did for my second birth. I will never have babies without them again! I make my own. They feel amazing and they promote healing.

    Your favorite pads, smeared with a spoonful of aloe gel, spritzed with a mixture of witch hazel and essential oils (I use frankincense and lavender, but there are other combinations out there), wrapped in foil and stuck in the freezer. After birth, just pull out one at a time as needed. They reduce swelling, soothe irritation, and bring relief to all those sore sensitive areas.

    I highly recommend them to all my pregnant friends. 🙂

  • Olivia says:

    I always use lansinoh gel soothies (for nursing). I pack them in my hospital bag and start using immediately. I’ve tried other brands and don’t like them. So happy for you!

  • J says:

    Thank you for offering to pray for those that are struggling with loss and or infertility. Your pregnancy updates are a source of inspiration for me.

    We have struggled with secondary infertility for a decade. My husband and I both have medical issues and have both undergone multiple procedures.

    I am so very grateful to be a mom to our son (who is now a teen), I just had always expected to have more children. We are thinking about alternative options for growing our family.

  • Jonna says:

    I look forward to reading your pregnancy weekly updates! I’m smiling with you & your family (as well as the occasional happy tears on my end). I’m looking forward to the day when I can share this beautiful process with my future husband (when I meet him). Your journey is a reminder that God is the ultimate physician. He can open the womb to bring a blessing just like He did throughout the Bible, Elizabeth’s pregnancy is my favorite to re-read.
    My big goal this week is to start my Lent Bible study that I read & study in addition to what I’m reading in the Bible now. I’ve just got to narrow down my two choices or do both in an A.M. & P.M. studies.

    Have a blessed week!

  • Kelly Larsen says:

    Hi Crystal,
    I look forward to your pregnancy updates every week and I am glad you are doing well still.

    My favorite things I loved to put in my hospital bag were making sure I had a wide range of clothing from all the hormonal shifts that happen after child birth and also a lot of snacks.

    Since you are open to natural methods I recommend looking at because she has so many different diy postpartum healing recipes that worked well for me.

  • Olivia says:

    For postpartum – Tucks pads! And Dermoplast spray; it’s numbing and pain-relieving. Also, if you don’t already have some sort of really large Yeti-style cup, I’d recommend investing in one; when I realized I could brew my coffee straight into it and it would stay hot, or put cold drinks straight into it and they’d stay cold, my life with a newborn was changed!!

    Also, I’d appreciate your prayers as well. We tried for ~3 years for our 3.5yo, and have been at it again (with medication) for 7 months now. My OB is giving us two more months, on an adjusted dosage, before referring us to a fertility specialist. Love following your journey!

  • Kristin A says:

    Congratulations on the pregnancy and yay that you’re feeling so well, since it sounds like in the past you haven’t felt as good. I have four kids and here are some recommendations for your postpartum based on my experiences. It seems with every baby I’ve discovered more and more (my youngest just turned three). Hopefully something here is helpful to you.

    -Obviously plenty of pads of various sizes
    -Skin safe ice packs to help with engorgement when milk comes in
    -Nursing tanks (the ice packs can tuck right in and stay put). I loved nursing tanks with baby #4 rather than nursing bras. So comfortable! I would even recommend getting a size larger than you think you might need for the first few weeks
    -Nursing pads (I always preferred Lansinoh)
    -Freezer bags for breastmilk (a lactation consultant with my firstborn taught me that any freezer bag will work. You don’t need to spend extra for bags marketed specifically for breastmilk. I always used quart sized freezer bags and marked the outside with the date and volume of milk. Yes, a quart sized bag is much too large but a significant cost savings over bags marketed specifically for breastmilk storage)
    -Comfort foods for the first week when breastmilk is coming in and emotions are all over the place (ice cream, bag of frozen french fries, etc)
    -Quick, easy, healthful snacks like granola bars, protein bars, etc plus stock up on things like frozen waffles and peanut butter, cereal, etc that might sound good any time of day so you have options no matter what time you’re up feeding baby and need to feed yourself too. I would also recommend stashing some granola, bars, protein bars, etc where you’ll be spending time with baby (such as in your nightstand, etc) so you don’t have to track down a snack at 2am!

  • Amanda says:

    Adult diapers! I personally used the thin Depends. So much easier (in my opinion) than pads and undies, and adult diapers save you from staining your undies and sheets.

    I’ve fortunately not experienced infertility, but I so dearly wanted a fifth (or even sixth!) baby. At 41, I feel like/think I’m just too old. My oldest daughter is 21, (and the rest are 12, 5, and 4… age gaps between the older three were intentional, and I love it. By the time I had the third, I was 35, and didn’t think waiting as long to have the fourth was a good idea). It’s not something that is at the front of my mind, but when I think about it, I feel a twinge of loss for not having had more, and I wish that I didn’t have that feeling. I know the first four should be enough (and I appreciate them all so much).

  • Euri says:

    Hi Crystal. My name is Euri. I’ve been coming to terms about me not being able to be a mom again. I have a 17 year old soon to be 18. I’m 38. I divorced when my son was 1 year old and have dreamt since to find a good man and remarry and have a family and more babies. Getting closer to my 40s I’m starting to let that dream go. Please pray for me. I love your updates and i appreciate how open you are in sharing your life with us. Letting that dream go is as painful to me as losing a baby.

  • Lindsey S. says:

    All of the camo you’ve been wearing in your pregnancy posts leads me to believe that this is a little boy……can’t wait to see for sure!

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