Welcome to Aiden Riley

Posted in Arieanna & Ianiv, baby

In a much-overdue post, we want to take the chance to welcome Aiden Riley Schweber, born on October 24th at 3:45am, 7lb 11oz and 52cm long. That’s one week past his due date, for those of you keeping track.

Aiden Riley SchweberRawrDaddy & AidenAiden Riley Schweber
See all Aiden photos here

On October 23, just as I was going to bed, my water broke. I wasn’t sure at first, so I kept waiting for labor to start. No luck. By 6am, when I was sure my water had broken but labor hadn’t started, we went to the hospital. They assessed that the baby was ok and asked me to return when they had more nurses. Because my membranes had ruptured prematurely, I had to be induced into labor.

At 1pm, I was put on the oxytocin drip. By 8pm, labor was still pretty manageable… because my body hadn’t started laboring on its own yet. Within 2 hours, all that changed. After being on the maximum drip for 30 minutes, my labor kicked into overdrive. My contractions became painful and back-to-back, almost no down time in between. The drip was stopped but my body kept up the same pace. Being only 3cm dilated at the point, and having such intense contractions, I opted for the epidural. This was not something I wanted to do, but I’m glad I did. Thankfully there were no complications as a result. Just 3 hours later I was ready to push and an hour later our baby was born! Within a half hour he had latched on and was a loud and happy baby. Read the rest of this entry »

40 Weeks Pregnant

Posted in Arieanna & Ianiv, baby

I never thought we’d make it this far in the pregnancy, but we have. We’re now 1 day short of our due date, October 17th, placing us at 40 weeks pregnant. At 36 weeks, the baby had already dropped for about a week and the doctor felt that we’d deliver in early October. Obviously that hasn’t happened. Though my body continues to prepare for labor – more dropping, cramping, false labor – I have yet to go into full labor. There are many things they people put as average markers for labor that we have long since passed – for example, many people say you’ll go into labor 2-3 weeks after baby drops. It’s been more than 5 weeks for us. Being excited about these milestones has not gotten us any further towards delivery ;)

Maternity Photoshoot

At 37 weeks, John Biehler came over and did a maternity shoot with us. The full set is here. It felt great to have the photos done and to enjoy the beautiful aspects of pregnancy. Thanks John!

Of course, it’s not all beautiful at this stage in the game! Aside from the excitement of soon meeting our son, there’s also anxiety, nervousness, frustration and so much more. Waiting these last 2 weeks has been very difficult. We take it one single day at a time and slowly we move forward. We just want to finally be in labor! Who ever thought I’d look forward to pain? But that’s how it is.

So, we still have no idea when baby will make his appearance. My doctor, and many researchers, believes that the baby sends out a chemical signal to trigger labor when he/she is ready. No matter how ready your body is, baby sends that signal. So, for now we wait. Anxiously. ;)

Nearly 37 Weeks Pregnant

Posted in Arieanna & Ianiv, baby

This Saturday we will be 37 weeks pregnant, the magic mark in the pregnancy when we can say we’re full term! Of course, that doesn’t say when we’ll actually have the baby, as a full term baby can come anywhere from 37 to 42 weeks.


My doctor’s exam this week showed that the baby’s head was “very low” and indications were that I was presenting at around 38 weeks. This means that I will probably deliver at or before I am 40 weeks pregnant, but not after (as is statistically more common for a first pregnancy).

This is definitely exciting news! If anyone has seen me within the last week, you would hear me say, without doubt, “I’m done.” The pregnancy definitely hit a difficult place. Though I was able to breathe better when the baby dropped a couple of weeks ago, I have had a harder and harder time sleeping. Partly due to the “light sleeping” the pregnant women go through to “prepare for baby” (what a load of crap that is, don’t we go through enough??) but mostly due to discomfort. I have severe pain near my pelvis / hip joint, particularly on the left side (the side I have to sleep on) and, due to swelling and this side-sleeping, issues with my arm pain have resurfaced. In the morning, I have a fair amount of nerve pain in my hand which restricts me from even being able to make a fist.

Speaking of swelling, I’m really looking forward to dropping that! It hasn’t been “horrible”, in terms of aesthetics, but I do have lovely white splotches all over my legs and now on my arms and hands too from this excess water. The bonus will come when my weight drops quickly from all this water dissipating after the baby is born! And, of course, I’m looking forward to wearing shoes other than my Birkenstocks (the only shoes that have fit for months).

So, I’m definitely ready for baby to come! That said, there are things I know I’ll soon miss. Despite how ‘aggressive’ the baby has been with his kicking and squirming, I know I’ll miss this special time with him. It’s a very amazing process and connection to be a part of. Yes, pregnancy is difficult. But it’s also absolutely amazing. To feel him kick and move his little bum around, to see him respond when Ianiv talks to him or to feel all his little bouts of hiccups… just so cute.

Here’s a question I get asked a lot… Do I have cravings? Well, not for anything “weird.” Early in the pregnancy, and still a bit now, I’ve enjoyed lemons and limes (and lemonade) more than usual. For me, it helped with nausea (though I only had very mild first trimester issues). Now, I’d say that things I really enjoy are simply “enhanced” and the need for them becomes more urgent. More often than not I’ll crave french fries or ice cream or a muffin. However, I’m easily swayed by something I see on tv or hear about. If someone mentions Thai food I can crave it to the point of distraction, for example. That said, Ianiv has been a lucky husband – he’s rarely had to go out for any special “craving” trips. ;)

34 Weeks Pregnant

Posted in Arieanna & Ianiv, baby

We’re now 34 weeks and a handful of days into the pregnancy. On Friday, we had another ultrasound. Early in the pregnancy, it was determined that I had about a 30% chance of being placenta previa, so this ultrasound was to check on the position of the placenta. We’re happy to report everything is now as it should be, with the placenta on the anterior (front).


At the same time, we also checked the position of the baby. About two weeks prior to the ultrasound, baby boy had turned breech (bum down). He’s an active baby, even now, but at the time was making turns at least once a day (once I realized that’s what he was doing). As he grew bigger, it was a lot more uncomfortable for me when he’d decide to switch positions. Thankfully, perhaps by his own choice or some exercises I’d been doing, the baby turned back from the breech position and has remained head-down since late last week.

At 34 weeks, the baby has also started to “drop” slightly, making it a little easier on me for breathing, though increasing my low back pain and the intensity of my Braxton Hicks contractions. We still have 3 weeks until baby is considered “full term” (which he is considered from 37 to 42 weeks), though the doctor says that if labor starts now, it won’t be stopped. So he could really come any time! The ultrasound very rough estimate has baby at near to 6lbs already.

The pregnancy has progressed to the “very uncomfortable” stage. My pelvis and lower back are both pretty sore and loose, in preparation for the birth, and I have discomfort from the contractions and just the weight of the baby. I’m sure his kicks don’t help either ;) I also have a fair amount of water retention in my legs and feet, making them a bit sore.

We have completed 2 out of the 6 prenatal classes. Let’s hope we can finish the full 6 before baby is born!

31 Weeks and Counting

Posted in Arieanna & Ianiv

We’ve passed 31 weeks in the pregnancy! We’re expecting the new baby in just about 8.5 weeks. And I’m so close to counting down the days! There’s still a lot of time left, but each day is definitely bringing new challenges!


When Vancouver had that record heat wave, I was definitely a mess. Feet so swollen I could barely walk. I was working on our couch at the time, since our house was being painted. That project took about 3 weeks, with our baby shower sandwiched in between.

Already it feels like a long time since that baby shower! The last two weeks have proven to be more challenging for me, pregnancy wise. I think I realize why people say the third trimester is hardest!

I was unable to return to working at my desk after our renovations were complete. The baby presses down and makes it difficult for me to breathe / for blood to circulate to my legs. So, I now work with my feet up on the couch, taking regular breaks to lie down or walk. This position has its problems for my neck and shoulder, of course. Sleeping is a whole other challenge. Despite being propped up – front and back – with loads of pillows, I have pain throughout the night. So, sleep is difficult. During the day, when the baby isn’t on my diaphragm, he’s often nudging his little rear up into my ribs or kicking the heck out of my mid-section. You add to that regular bouts of “pregnancy brain” (some of which I’m sure has to do with ups and downs in protein intake and glucose levels), and I’ve definitely been on a roller coaster.

That said, it’s not all horrible. I can still get away with eating spicy foods, and still enjoy coffee (though I’m back to decaf). Though I may be slow, I enjoy getting out and walking and, up until this week, was regularly attending a prenatal pilates class. It was fun! I’ve also love nesting in the baby’s room – now beautifully painted and adorned with all baby’s new furniture. And of course, as sore as his kicking can make me, I love feeling the baby twist and turn around and to see his little foot or arm push out my tummy.

We’ve already had our “tour” of the hospital in preparation for the birth. Next week we begin our prenatal classes. We also have another ultrasound to look forward to. So, we’re getting there. In retrospect, I’m sure the next 8 weeks will just fly by. For now, we’re just taking it a day at a time.

Ultrasound at Week 19

Posted in Arieanna & Ianiv

Here’s the latest image of our baby! The ultrasound was taken at 18 weeks and 4 days. We’re now at 19 weeks and 3 days in our pregnancy.

Week 19

So far the baby is very healthy and growing the way it should. All our pre-screen tests came up normal, so that was good to hear. We don’t yet know the gender of our baby. During our last ultrasound, the baby had its legs up high but the umbilical cord was running right between them, covering any chance of seeing if we’re having a boy or girl!

Since there’s no “medical” reason to get another ultrasound, we’ve decided to get the “entertainment” ultrasound. Basically they call any ultrasound that just looks for gender an “entertainment ultrasound.” This is one you need to pay for yourself. Given that, we decided to have fun and get the 3D option. We’ve booked a 3D ultrasound on June 22nd (23 weeks in) to see the gender of our baby.

Right now, I’m feeling pretty good. Some of the pain and discomfort I had during the first trimester has passed. I still have difficulty sleeping, not being used to sleeping on my side plus the added weight of the baby causing some pain in my hips. I get very uncomfortable sitting and working through the day, so that’s been a challenge too. I’m growing more quickly now, so we’ll see how that changes as I get bigger!

Go Global Presentation: Travel Blogging

Posted in Arieanna & Ianiv, Blogging, Events, Professional Blogging

Today I gave a presentation to a small group of students at UBC as part of Go Global Week. The presentation topic was “Documenting your International Experience: how to create a dynamic travel blog

I used these slides as my speaking points during the talk, although covered a lot more ground that was here. Raul, a great support during the day, also live blogged the session! You can read that here.

Travel Blogging Basics
View SlideShare presentation or Upload your own. (tags: travel blogging)

You can also download the presentation as PDF here.

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