It looks as if I haven't updated this in 7 weeks (my last post was at 13 weeks). My drafts would tell you otherwise as I have a few posts just hanging in the wings. Mostly those posts were not making sense. Maybe at some point I will go self edit and make them usable, but until then here is the halfway point update.

1. Who will our little one be? 
I admit I was adamant about not finding out the gender at first. There were so many friends of friends and friends that had either lost a baby late in pregnancy or had birth issues. It changed my heart in wanting to know. I told Jimmy that if the pregnancy is the only time I have with this specific child, I want to know who is in there. So we went ahead and found out! According to our ultrasound tech (who has never predicted wrong) we are going to be the happy parents of a little girl!! We swore all the way up until the goo was on my belly that we were destined to have a little boy first. I secretly and not so secretly wanted a girl, but I had felt like it was a boy for the most part. As soon as they said girl the first statement that came out of my mouth was, "oh drama!!" Now, I have decided that I will not speak "drama" over my little girl but, I do know with girls comes more of the dramatics. I can go on and on about how happy I am to be the momma of a little girl. I think its more about the relationship we will have than anything.

2. What's in a name? Ellis Jules
As soon as I found out it was a girl, I was determined to settle on a name. It was important to me to know my little girl by name. So while Jimmy wasn't exactly on the same pace as I was in making the final decision of names, he met me where I was. We had an amazing boy name picked out that we will tuck away for later use. The list of names I had have been the same list I made at least 2-3 years back. There were a few names that I was completely sold on, until I started thinking of them with my married last name. But, Ellis was the name I fell the most in love with. Ellis Island is a favorite of mine. I love US history and I love what Ellis Island stands for. It was a welcome center for foreigners. Part of my prayer for Ellis is that she be a world changer with a big welcoming spirit. Ellis also means "the Lord is my God." I pray continually that Ellis will choose the Lord (Jesus Christ) as her God. The middle name was very important to me. The first name could be a fun name that had its own character. The middle name had to be a family name or a name of meaning. Jules is where my heart settled after realizing naming her Ellis Grey would be a social nightmare. Apparently I don't watch Greys Anatomy to know who Ellis Grey was. Thank you friends and instagram hashtag searches.

Jules is derived from Julie. Probably my freshman year of college I met this lady randomly while working in the nursery. I knew I recognized her as an Alum who spoke at my college. I also knew, I wanted to know her! My college had a program for local Alumni families to adopt college kids for Sunday lunch, holidays, a place to go etc. I ended up with an amazing family with lots of kids who loved soccer. By Homecoming of the next year, I was speaking at a Lunch where somehow I got seated at the table with the President of Evangel (my college), some city official of Springfield,Mo and Julie was sitting right next to me. Here I was, nervous and going over my index cards of what I would say. She leaned over and asked, "Sooo what would you do if I just took your cards and threw them away?" After that, I made sure to say hi to her whenever I saw her. Well fast forward to my Junior and Senior year... I ended up at her house almost every Sunday during college. And they have become family! If there was one lady out there I want Ellis Jules to be like, Julie is one of them!

3. What am I reading?
Ok. So my reading may or may not open up a can of worms. My goal in reading is to capture the essence and principals behind the methods to apply to my family as I see fit. So while I have read portions of the book, I am not committed to their entire premise or practices! I am a researcher. I love reading blogs, books and articles about many different ideas. What I have been told I am good at is the digestion of information. Some how I can read something and apply it to situations. I also have a ridiculous memory. So in reading these books, I hope to find application for Ellis' unique personality.

To Train Up a Child- I read this back when I wasn't pregnant. I have yet to open it again since I have not a great taste in my mouth from the authors other books and methods. I did like the concepts they have, regarding parenting, and have seen both good and bad fruit come from this book.

Baby Wise- I read this whole thing and love the idea of it. We shall see come next year when Ellis is here what principals I apply.

Hypno Babies- I was skeptical at first of the whole hypnosis audiobook kind of thing. I have come to the realization that I definitely have more fears and anxieties than I thought I did. The whole positive affirmations of pregnancy has helped me so much with removing negativity. I have definitely come to believe that your thoughts become words and actions. I love believing that this is a healthy, normal pregnancy that will result in a healthy, easy birth. I also love the ability to block out naysayers and skeptics.

The Bradley Method- We will start this class with our doula come January/February.

Grace Based Parenting- I want to start reading this

Growing Kids God's Way- I want to start reading this

4. How am I feeling? 
I feel like that is the question I get the most. First trimester I was grumpy a lot. I feel like I can be more chipper these days than the first trimester. I blame the grumpiness on feeling nausea all day long, consistently having headaches and my the aches and pains with growing. The 2nd trimester, I feel like I can finally stay up way past my normal 7pm bedtime that first tri had me doing. I feel great. At 20 weeks I can happily say I love it. Sometimes I forget I am pregnant, then I look down and see the bulging belly happening before my eyes. Lately, I have been eating oranges a lot. Like I can't get enough citrus fruits. I also can't seem to drink enough milk. I HATED milk when I was a kid and even as an adult (unless its in cereal or flavored). So this entire pregnancy, even first trimester, milk has been my feel good drink. I also am very very grateful that I got a fetal doppler. I love listening to Ellis' heart beat whenever I feel like I just want to hear her. I think she is pretty mellow right now. Her heart rate has been consistently 135-145 every time I listen. I have felt her movements and its totally weird. Sometimes I doubt it is her. But I am just trusting that whatever I am feeling is totally amazing!