26th & 27th Weeks: Hurray for Women’s Month!

We turned 27 weeks yesterday!  The 27th week marks the end of our second trimester.  We’ve come a long way, River!  Thank you, Lord, for being with us always.  And for Your grace, protection, provision, and faithfulness toward us.

I usually write at least once a week, but have been busy lately.  Been shopping for baby stuff,  which I will write about later in this post, and also busy with other things like attending a seminar on newborn care, having DVT scan, River’s congenital anomaly scan, and lab tests.  I will write a separate post on River’s congenital anomaly scan results.

How is River? 🙂  He’s been more active than ever!  At this point, I don’t just feel him move.  I can see him moving as my tummy moves in different directions too.  He always makes me feel he’s with me, and with that I feel secure that he’s ok.  He is still in a breech position, which means he has not yet turned head down, but there’s still time.  Maybe one of those vigorous movements means he already has flipped to the right position for delivery!  I hope he does so in time.  He was pretty active last night too as we watched “Beauty and the Beast.”  Maybe he likes the soundtrack! 🙂  Perhaps he’ll like musicals like Mommy and Daddy do.

As for me, my appetite continues to grow with my belly.  I should be in low fat diet for two weeks to complete my blood tests.  There are more stretch marks showing too – will they go away as I continue to put on those anti-stretch marks oil, cream, and lotion, or they shouldn’t have come out in the first place if I were putting enough of those products?  Hmmm… I hope it’s not too late.

At 26 weeks, here are some milestones:

  • River’s beginning to open his eyes!  His eyes have been closed all along these past months. 🙂  No eye color yet at this point.
  • He now has tiny fingernails too.
  • He is inhaling and exhaling small amounts of amniotic fluid, which is essential for the development of his lungs.
  • He can hear conversations I’ve been having now.  I see to it I read to him at least one book in a week.  I pray out loud for him to hear too!  Should do those more often 🙂

At 27 weeks,  River is now as big as a cucumber at 38 cm, according to the What to Expect app.  If my husband presses is ear on my belly, he may actually hear River’s heartbeat!  Other milestones:

  • He has doubled his weight in the past month
  • and is about 15 inches tall (more than a foot long!)
  • He’s taking lots of amniotic fluid.
  • He has has fully functioning kidneys.


What’s with the title of this post?  I never thought Women’s Month could be so memorable, significant and impactful until this month.

In fact, I was oblivious to the wonders it could bring until, as I wandered off to the baby section of a major department store to browse at their sale items, a salesperson spoke these words, “Come back on Wednesday. For Wednesdays of the month of March, all ladies with our loyalty card can have an additional 10%, on top of our existing sale on baby products.  You just need to have a minimum purchase of 2000 pesos. All because it’s Women’s Month.”

And so I was convinced that the right timing to shop for River is now. Women’s Month is significant because I scheduled my baby stuff shopping around it, that I had to start shopping in my 26th week, just 6 weeks past halfway of my pregnancy.

Impactful –  to the wallet.  And that makes it memorable, too.  Ten percent additional discount is a big deal since I had yet to buy major items like a crib and a stroller.  For two Wednesdays in a row, I was at that department store, spending at least 2 hours shopping.  The baby store wittingly gives moms-to-be a checklist that makes it seem one can never buy enough.  On top of that, well-trained sales people surround a shopper with plenty of suggestions on must-haves and what-nots. And new, expectant moms like me can be a sucker for those.

I was not warned how fun and exciting, yet dangerously addicting shopping for a first-born baby could be, and thus requires planning, sound judgment, discipline, and budget, of course.  I am talking about going to a physical store to shop – don’t even get me started on online shopping.

Alerted at how those salespeople seemed to “attack” in full gear, and how the wide selection of cute baby items seemed to be calling out to me, telling me that my baby needed them, I needed to be at least equally armed myself to win in this battle called shopping.  I made clear my intentions and guidelines in shopping. So my reasons to shop for baby stuff this early are these:

(1) to take advantage of the discounts
(2) to go out and shop on my own while I still can / still allowed to, before I enter my third trimester.  I didn’t want to bother my husband with these trivial things – a.k.a. I want freedom to shop 😀

First Wednesday: bought major necessities: (1) stroller, (2) crib, and (3) accessories for those, which I didn’t know I needed until the sales people recommended them to me.

I was armed with a list of what to look for in a baby stroller:

– fully hooded
– with a high seat
– light
– durable

So as recommended by my brother and my sister-in-law, based on their experience with their two baby boys, I bought the Japanese brand but China-made with Japanese technology and design Aprica Luxuna Light. It is lighter than other brands at 5kg, and its seat is higher than the rest of the strollers available too.  Love the color and design too! 🙂

Photo from aprisin.com.sg

A close competitor to my wallet in this category, and equally priced with the discounts and all, is Peg Pegero, an Italian brand made in Italy too. It seems to have more plus points when it comes to durability, wider seat at 15 inches compared to Aprica’s 12 inches – but fails in the weight category which is a very important factor – 8 kg compared to Aprica’s 5 kg. Two over zealous sales people even tried the stroller, with one sitting on the chair and the other one standing standing on the foot rest behind the stroller.  There are lighter models of Aprica, as light as 2.3 kg, and they are cheaper too, but then they are not fully-hooded, which is an important factor for infants since they sleep a lot.

For the crib, the Graco brand was recommended also, so I was choosing among different Graco cribs based on the designs and the prices.  But then again, some salespeople tried to derail my plan and let me consider a crib of the same price items from the brand Joie (UK brand).  I did give the brand a chance, but after considering it briefly, stubbornly stuck to my plan.  Graco has been proven and tested by people I know and trust.   In fact, my 13-year old nephew’s Graco crib is still in good condition up to now.

I was bent on choosing the entry level model a.k.a. cheapest one.  If the brand is durable, the cheapest one should be as reliable as the most expensive one right? 🙂  The more expensive ones just happen to have additional accessories like diaper changer, additional pockets / organizers, and others that my brother said are not necessary.  I wasn’t happy with the designs of the Graco cribs displayed, so I asked for more designs. When they brought this one out…

Photo from toysrus.com – Graco Pack ‘n Play Playard Stratus

… I knew for sure this is the crib for River.  It matches color of the stroller too!

We initially wanted to have a 3-in-1 convertible crib, but settled for a crib / playpen since this will be used longer, and for space consideration.  We already have a queen-sized bed in River’s room, a bed my husband had since two years before we got married.  Wooden cribs are nice and pretty, Instagram perfect, but playpens (with adjustable layer, 2 levels) are more practical and economical as well.  This playpen is even less than half the price of a 3-in-1 crib. (7,200 pesos compared to 20,000 pesos!)  Though the 3-in-1 crib can be turned into daybed, we don’t really need a daybed, given that there is already an existing bed in the room.  I’m using the extra budget and space for a tent or teepee later on 😀

Oh, the best part – I got the stroller at 20% off, plus the the additional Wednesday discount 10%, and a 1000 pesos voucher from the loyalty card perks.  I got a good deal for it, at the same price a pregnant cousin got hers for her baby girl, but in a major baby fair, where there were hoards of people.  Sure there were big discounts and great deals in that fair, but I’m just glad that I spared myself from the stress of going there, and still got the same price anyway.

As for the crib, it is not on sale, but I got it at 10% off because of the Women’s Month Wednesday discount.

I could have gotten another 10% discount if I have this certain bank’s credit card!  But well, it’s ok.  I can let go of that. There might be cheaper prices for these out there – but nevermind, I did my due diligence and am happy with these purchases. (consoling myself now)

Accessories bought:  stroller pad, bag for the stroller when traveling, bedding set for the crib, waterproof cover for the base of the crib

I later found out that there are cheaper and better designs of nursery bedding sets and stroller pads online than those available at the department store.  Of the same if not better quality too.  100% pure cotton, as they all claim.   I’ve ordered from @empressita_ online through Instagram and I’m excited to receive the delivery.  Discovered  Zyji recently also and the price range is almost the same as @empressita_’s.

Second Wednesday: feeding bottles, clothes, and all other “necessities.” Some items are in the gray area of necessity and want 😀

Screen Shot 2017-03-17 at 11.05.40 AM

As recommended, I didn’t buy smaller bottles for newborn but just 9 oz bottles (260 ml) since these will be used longer.  I was recommended to buy Pigeon because Avent is more expensive that Pigeon, but with the discounts and vouchers, Avent bottles turn out to be cheaper than Pigeon’s now!  Bought 8 bottles of these BPA free plastic bottles – natural edition (vs classic), plus additional newborn nipples, since the nipples that come with the bottles are for 1 month and up.

The bottles are sold in a bundle – 4 bottles for the price of 3! Then of course the discounts.  I have a loyalty card voucher worth 1200 pesos that I can use for at least 6000 pesos minimum purchase of Avent products.  So along with the bottles, I bought other essentials like bottle and nipple brush, milk powder dispenser, breast milk / food storage, and reusable breast pads.  I do hope I can breastfeed, and after the seminar I’ll be attending on Sunday, I’ll know more about it and may need to buy more breastfeeding essentials.

So buying feeding bottles was my main agenda for this second Wednesday trip to the department store.  But again, with the checklist given to me, I realized that I had plenty of other things I still needed to buy, like clothes, wash cloths, bibs, towels and others.

The only clothes, mittens, bonnets, bibs, burp pads, and towels that I bought so far…

Not buying any more clothes for now since I am waiting for my new baby nephews’ hand-me-downs 🙂  Babies can easily outgrow newborn stuff anyway.

Bought these because my husband is a Knicks fan.  It’s a little surprise for my husband too 🙂
The magnetic board, an addition to my nursery decor project, may not be a necessity, but since it is cheap with the discount and it matches the design of the crib I bought, it is very close to the necessity category. 😀  Other items in the photo are:  brand new and pre-loved board books from Happy Tree Ph and Oh Baby Ph, super cool Native slip-ons care of friends (Thanks, Auntie and Uncle!), and Little Nutbrown Hare stuffed toy from “Guess How Much I love You” board book, given by my husband many years ago, when we were still dating.

Bought other essentials like a bath cradle, a baby grooming kit, a rubber cot sheet, a nose cleaner suction syringe, a fingertip brush with a case, a clear case to store sterilized bottles, ear thermometer, and 2 packs of newborn diapers for starters.

Shopping was fun, but of course, costly.  I’m thankful for the recommendations and suggestions of family and friends, and with those I’m assured that I bought things wisely.  And when I thought of buying cute stuff that are not necessary at this point, it was as if I could almost hear my husband’s voice telling me, “We don’t need that.” I’m sure with all the additional discounts and the vouchers I got, I was able to get all these items cheaper than elsewhere. 😀

That’s all for my shopping adventure!  I just might go back next Wednesday…in case I thought of other essential stuff I missed.

I still need a sterilizer, and I’m eyeing UV Care‘s multipurpose sterilizer.  Ecomom‘s version is more popular (great design and marketing!) but double the price.  Unless there’s a major sale coming up soon on UV Care products, buying that UV sterilizer can wait. 🙂

Considering some baby carriers also… Hope I find the best one soon.

Happy Women’s Month! 🙂  Cheers to all the wonderful women out there!


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