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Life Update: Pregnancy (Week 9), a trip to Austin, & roller-skating

I’ve been getting the itch to start sharing more personal posts on the blog — even if they aren’t necessarily money-related. I waffled on whether to post these here because I know that anytime I consistently post non-money-related posts, some people get annoyed by it and are very vocal about that.

However, I also know I’ve heard from many of you that you miss me sharing more of my life online (I do a LOT of life-sharing on Instagram so it feels like I share a lot of our life… but then I remember that not everyone follows my stories there so it probably does seem like I don’t share as much as I used to because I’ve been sharing it more on stories than on the blog!)

After a lot of thought, I decided that I would just go with my gut and begin sharing a regular weekly post here on the blog that’s part pregnancy update, part peek into our lives, part whatever else I want to share. If you’re not into these types of posts, you can just skip right on by on the weekends, no hard feelings at all! I truly mean that!

Pregnancy Update

9 Weeks! We’re almost to double digits which means we’re getting ever and ever closer to the second trimester and a little less (hopefully!) morning, noon, and night sickness. (Missed my 8-week pregnancy update? See it here.)

HIGHLIGHTS: 1) Getting 9+ hours of sleep cumulatively on Tuesday night while I was staying alone in a hotel in Austin. (I rarely sleep well when I’m by myself in a hotel, but I guess I was so tired that I just slept and slept and slept. It was completely unexpected and totally amazing! 1) I felt well enough for an hour one morning this week that I actually made scrambled eggs and was able to eat them (I usually can’t go near anything related to food prep!)

NOTABLE THIS WEEK: I discovered that when I get more sleep, I don’t feel as sick. I didn’t realize how much nausea and tiredness were connected for me, so this was very helpful to discover. Also, I ordered a cast iron pan from Amazon (thanks to all of your recommendations!) and am hoping maybe it will help with my anemia. I’m still very out of breath and dragging much of the time, but I’m hopeful that eating as many iron-rich foods as I can stomach, a double iron supplement, extra Vitamin C when I have iron, and the cast iron pan will help my levels to improve before I’m tested in a week and a half again.

CRAVINGS: This week, much of the time, I struggled more to find things to eat that I felt would stay down. I did have cravings for carrots and dip one day — which was pretty exciting seeing as I have no wanted to go near a vegetable! And late one night, I had a desperate craving for Sonic tater tots. Jesse — kind and amazing husband that he is — went out and got me some at 10:45 p.m. at night!

WEIGHT GAIN: 3 pounds! My weight didn’t go up this week, but I feel like my “baby bump” got a little more pronounced and I’m starting to reach more and more for stretching pants and roomier tops. It will be interesting to see when I actually begin wearing maternity clothes. It was around 17-20 weeks with my other three, but I have a feeling it’s going to be sooner this time around!

(By the way, someone messaged me on Facebook last week to tell me that my “baby bump” was not, in fact, anything to do with a baby and was just all bloat. I had to laugh because, while some of it is likely some pregnancy-related bloat, since there’s a baby in there, we get to call it a “baby bump” regardless of what is causing it! :))

NOTE: I’ve never done weekly pregnancy or regular belly shots in the past before. I decided to do it this time because I wish I had documented my pregnancies better in the past. I plan to post these on Saturday each week.

If you are sensitive to these types of post because of loss or infertility, I wanted you to know so you can avoid checking my blog/social media on those days. I don’t know that I’ll ever get to experience pregnancy again, so I’m documenting this primarily for myself and this child (Lord-willing! To get to read someday). I also know that a number of you have begged for me to share pregnancy updates, so if this if your thing, you can enjoy these posts each weekend.

A Peek Into Our Week

I flew to Austin, TX on Tuesday for an SEO training with Everything Digital Marketing. Meg, who is our Director of Content Strategy, was able to attend, as well. (She is spearheading all of the changes we’re working on making for SEO on our site.)

The event was SO good and she and I came away excited and energized about how to organize all of our old content plus how to create better content for you all in the future.

Believe it or not, we’ve never really done much of anything with SEO in the past, so we have been working hard to learn everything we can and figure out how to implement it. Since we have thousands of posts in the archives, it’s a pretty mammoth task, but we’re working on learning and formulating a plan so we can serve you all better.

I got back on Wednesday late afternoon — just in time to head to the roller skating rink with our youth group (Jesse and I are both serving as small group co-leaders for our church youth group this year. It’s been a blast!)

One of the boys severely broke his wrist during the evening, so Jesse and I ended up spending some of the evening driving him to the ER to meet his parents and get medical attention. He was such a brave kid and I can’t even imagine how much pain he was in.

We got back just in time for the group picture. Can you spot me?? 🙂

We ended up taking Kaitlynn to Urgent Care, too, because her wrist was hurting her after she hit the wall really hard. Gratefully, she just had a bad sprain.

I guess it’s good that I had decided ahead of time not to skate! Yikes!

What I’m…

Reading right now: The Choosing

Watching right now: Three Identical Strangers

Listening to right now: Michael Buble Christmas (don’t judge! It made me happy when I was feeling yucky today!)

Loving right now: Preggi Pop Drops

In Case You Missed It:

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  • Amanda Parsley says:

    Try Rainbow Light prenatal vitamins and Rainbow Light Iron supplements. They are plant based and worked wonders for my anemia!

    • Thanks so much for the suggestion!

    • Charlotte says:

      So happy for you!! Congratulations!!
      My niece said she liked Daily Sunshine and actually took that during her pregnancy because she still exercised during her pregnancy. You may want to check it out. It’s a supplement that Beachbody makes (a yummy powder drink) and it’s not the normal protein supplement they offer. It just got put out into the market early last year and it’s actually made for kids and adults. Wished I had a picture for you but u probably can Google it. I actually do take it myself. Best wishes!!

    • Reina says:

      Wow, your pregnant! Congratulations, what a wonderful blessing! I was away a bit from reading blogs but I guess I missed so much! I have been reading your blog since you were pregnant with your son. Love your life updates!

  • Kristine says:

    Candy canes were my unexpected naseau relief last pregnancy! I always had one in my pocket and just broke off little bits to suck on.

    Hoping you find relief! Feeling sick is the pits… even if it’s for a good reason!

    • Guest says:

      I agree – peppermints are very soothing to me! I had horrible vomiting with both pregnancies so Zofran was a miracle for me when peppermints and other more natural attempts did not work.

  • Patti says:

    Loved this post!!! It is wonderful to follow along on your pregnancy journey…thank you so much for sharing. I have never done instagram so I appreciate seeing “personal stuff “ on here. Enjoy your Sunday off tomorrow😊🌻. Thanks for all you do and for sharing your truth.

  • Ellie says:

    I have some catching up to do. Didn’t know you were pregnant. Congrats!!!

  • Jennifer says:

    I love reading about your personal life and your family! I think it helps me to know that the person providing these money saving tips has a real family and a real life 😉

  • Maurika says:

    Keep posting the non money posts. I enjoy reading your updates!!

  • Pamela says:

    I was severely anemic (hemoglobin 7.0) once after a postpartum hemorrhage. I had my hemoglobin back up to 10 in 3 weeks by spacing my 2 iron pills out 12 hours each day and taking them on an empty stomach with orange juice. Iron absorbs best in an acidic environment like an empty stomach and the OJ adds the vitamin C. I also ate red meat every day during those few weeks. My midwife was amazed at how fast I recovered!

    I don’t know how anemic you are but I’ll pray for you. It’s definitely not much fun to be tired and short of breath!

  • Jody says:

    I LOVE your more personal posts on here! I’m glad you have the itch to do more of those here 😊.

    Also Crystal, I am so so happy for you and this new family addition growing in that cute belly bump!! I am in awe of God’s timing for your family and I am so excited for you. I can’t imagine what it was like to surrender that dream and then find out it was going to be a reality after all. I have thought of that multiple times since reading your news and it is very very faith building. I am looking forward to watching all your new family growth unfold. Congratulations to you and your family. Thank you for sharing this news and journey with us.

  • Mackenzie Foust says:

    I’m so so happy for you guys! Praying for relief from sickness and lots of iron! 🦒

  • Carole Janusz says:

    Congrats sweetie. So happy for all of you. Prayers.

  • JJ says:

    Your personal posts are my favorite! I’m not on Instagram, so I love that you’re putting it here!!!

  • Darci says:

    With my 5th, anything and everything made me nauseous. Finding anything to eat was so frustrating. My mom, who was an ob/gyn nurse for 16 years told me to try french fries one day while we were out to eat and I thought she was completely nuts, but she said carbs can actually ease morning sickness more than most other foods. I was skeptical but it worked. They were so good! Also, coca-cola… let it go flat and drink warm. That can settle a pregnant stomach when nothing else will. Another trick from mom the nurse. lol

  • Emily says:

    I’m so glad you’re bringing back the peak into your life posts! These are my favorite part of the blog.

  • Annette says:

    I love Bethany House! I actually worked for them while going to college there (now they are separate). Anytime you are in MN. I’d love to meet for tea!! And I am so thrilled for your miracle baby!! It is such a different feeling when you know what a miracle you are carrying!

  • Lori says:

    Congratulations! I drank Ovaltine every morning when I was pregnant to ward off morning sickness. There’s tons of extra vitamins and minerals in it.

  • Sdr says:

    I must be the outlier because I had four babies (from age 28 to 42–yes, I was old) and while with my first pregnancy I was in maternity clothes at 26 weeks all the others were around 22 I also gained (with exception of my one high risk preemie baby)exactly 16 lbs and delivered babies in the 8 lb 3-9 oz range. I think my body is as type A as I am.

  • Michele says:

    I was anemic with each pregnancy- I was told that vitamin C helps with absorption, but calcium prevents it. So avoid taking iron with calcium supplements, or with milk, or calcium enriched OJ. Also, my OB suggested staggering the iron supplements- one in the am, one in the evening. Praying for a healthy pregnancy!

  • Linda says:

    Our skating rink requires that every skater wear wrist braces. Sounds like your rink needs to implement this requirement as well. I enjoy your personal posts.

  • Kathleen Dunton says:

    I love everything you post. You have helped me save so much money, and be able to redirect that money to home repairs to fix and sell my house. I had my first Grand baby last May. She live in NC, and I live in NH. We are moving!! I also love reading your more personal stuff. You are a Rock Star mentor to me in so many ways. (Fan girl here, lol) When you show your ‘side b’, it reminds me that we need to pray for people, even the ones we may never meet. I will be praying that the pregnancy yuck moves on quick so that you can enjoy the little one growing in you. BTW, dry Captain Crunch, out of the box was my best friend through all three of my pregnancies.

  • Kimberly K says:

    If you like ginger at all, what saved me during my last pregnancy was Trader Joe’s Ginger Mints. I carried a tin with me everywhere. They seemed to work better for me than the Preggi Pop Drops.

  • Claire says:

    I can’t believe people complain about non-money saving posts! I’m not on Instagram, and I’m not into podcasts, so I was really missing these types of posts. Congratulations on your pregnancy! I am an adoptive mom who has never been able to carry past the first trimester. But I still enjoy your pregnancy updates and I’m so happy for you!

  • Chris says:

    I don’t do Instagram, so thank you for sharing here about your book deal. I have read all of your books in the past. Just wanted to say congratulations and I was happy to see this. I am an empty nester and may not read this new parenting book, but I know you will have good things to say, and I know your book will be a blessing to the younger women who read it. Good luck, and my prayers are with you in this. Long time follower of yours.

  • Brandette W. says:

    Please do not let a few nay-sayers keep you from sharing with us. I am willing to bet those of us who are so thrilled with your new news and would LOVE to see weekly personal posts, far far outway those that vocally don’t.

    I am so excited to see this post today. I have been following since before Silas was born and have missed the connecting on a more personal level. This post makes me very happy.

  • Jessica says:

    I know you are getting a lot of advice. But Vitamin B6 was a lifesaver this pregnancy. I barely had any nausea in comparison to the other pregnancies.

    This website contains the dosage info

  • Kelli says:

    I find it hilarious what people will take the time to write in about. I have always that if I have a bump that wasn’t there when I wasn’t pregnant, it’s a baby bump – because it wouldn’t be there if My body wasn’t growing a baby! 😂 I have struggled for years with anemia too – hope it gets better for you.

  • Carisa says:

    My sister donated blood regularly. She could not one time, because her iron level was too low. They told her to eat cream of wheat every day for 2 weeks and then come back. When she went back her iron level was good. My guess is that this worked because cream of wheat is enriched with iron.

  • Guest says:

    Gosh, I personally LOVE the personal posts. I skip all the deals and like the personal stuff. 😉 If you need it, Zofran was a blessing from God for me. I didn’t take it all the time but I had nighttime sickness and would start vomiting, like clockwork, at 7 PM so then I couldn’t sleep and would have to be at work the next morning. 🙁 Zofran helped so much with the nausea and vomiting and had the unexpected benefit of making me sleep!

  • Elizabeth says:

    Wishing you all the best with this pregnancy!! Our third (and last) child was a miracle baby that I carried basically because people prayed over me!! She is a special gift to us!! Though all children are, of course.

  • Kimberly says:

    Delighted for you guys!! Wish Christians–like you and your Husband–would have many, many children!!

    Somebody needs to point out, however, that it’s going to be impossible to miss the pregnancy posts, as you suggest. Maybe those could stay on Instagram or Facebook? Very painful for me and so many others, as you’ve aptly pointed out.

    • Because SO many people who read here don’t have Facebook or IG and have begged for updates here instead of me just sharing those places, I’ve decided to share the posts here. However, they will only be on the weekends. So they’ll be buried by posts by Monday mid-day.

      I thought long and hard before deciding to share these here because I well know the pain of infertility, but I also know that our story of an impossible pregnancy is giving a lot of hope to thousands of people and that’s why I decided to share (I think you’re likely very familiar with our story and how the doctors said this was entirely impossible and we had to grieve the fact that my womb was permanently closed, despite how much we had hoped for another baby).

      I know I can’t please everyone, but I hope that giving a heads up will help so that those who find it to be painful can know what day to avoid the blog. It will likely go up Saturday afternoon and I don’t post on Sundays, so you won’t miss any deals to not visit the blog that day.

      I’m sorry for the pain you’ve endured in this regard. I just stopped and prayed for you. And thank you for rejoicing with us, even though it is hard for you.

    • Claire says:

      I’ll pray for you too Kimberly. Pregnancy updates are always bittersweet for me, too, as I have a long history of infertility and miscarriages (never carried beyond 12 weeks), and am now too old to ever conceive again. Even though I wouldn’t trade our 11 year old son (adopted as a newborn) for anything and couldn’t possibly love him more if I had given birth to, it’s still hard to have missed the experience of fullterm pregnancy. But also like you, I’m so happy for Crystal. It’s easier to rejoice in her updates since I now how sensitive she is to those of us who struggle with this issue. Praying that you are richly blessed in God’s timing!

  • Kim says:

    I love these personal posts! Keep them coming!

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