News and Review

June 19, 2008 at 10:04 pm 8 comments

Life has been busy lately, with my new weekly column on Inside Higher Ed’s Mama, PhD blog (and the book now out, too!), an essay of mine coming out in the next issue of my beloved Mothering Magazine (very excited about this) and my Barefoot Books side business (also going well) – not to mention my husband wrapping up his teaching year and a new multiplication workbook coming out as part of our other home business, MathRaps (more excitement for us, can you see me clapping with glee?).

Oh, and yes, a very busy and needy two-year-old whose destruction we follow like storm-chasers and whom we still wake up with at all hours. (Good thing she’s cute.)

And, by the way, did I mention I’m pregnant? Nine weeks and counting.

Yes, friends, that is the biggest news in this Having Enough household. Our cup actually runneth over. We’re just at the brink of too busy – not quite there yet and DH’s summer break has come just in time to pull back and spend some relaxing family time at the beach and such. Still, it’s very easy to forget there is actually a teeny, tiny little being starting to grow inside of me.

And that’s why I jumped at the chance to review the new edition of A. Christine Harris’ The Pregnancy Journal for MotherTalk! A book to remind me every day to stop (for a moment) chasing the toddler, move away from the computer, and focus on this teeny, tiny little being in there. This journal serves that purpose quite well.

Appropriately, the new edition of this “over one million sold,” spiral-bound hardcover (appropo for a journal) has more information on subsequent pregnancies rather than just first pregnancies, and even has some tips on transitioning from one child to two. Harris has updated nutritional info since her 1996 first edition, and incorporated more millennium topics such as doula-attended births, sleep-sharing and breastfeeding as well (right on!).

Most prominent, though, is still the fairly scientific, daily tracking of baby’s development in utero. And, whether a first pregnancy or subsequent, I will say that it is just as amazing to know every day what exactly is going on in my uterus as I grow another human being.

Each day, Harris provides detailed descriptions of the baby’s development – like, today, for example. I’m at Day 46. With 220 days to go, she tells me. And what’s junior up to in there?

Her/his nose is beginning to develop around the nasal sacks, “the elbow region is clearly visible and the arms have a complete network of arteries and veins.” Also, this little being has toe ridges and “the skin on the foot plate folds down between the future toes, distinguishing each from the other.” Two days ago was when the earliest recordable brain waves occurred, and in the next week a tongue will develop, elbows will bend and external ears will form. Kind of amazing, isn’t it? All while I chase around kid #1 and type away.

Harris also tells me today that I will continue to notice breast changes, like tingling and tenderness (yes, a whole new level as a nursing mom, in fact!). And gives me a little spiel on Vitamin A, why I need it and what food to eat (yellow, orange, and dark green vegetables, if you’re wondering).

She also peppers the journal with facts on childbirth in other cultures and in history, which I love. Filipino tribes historically thought eating twin bananas would cause twins and eating eggplant would result in dark-skinned babies (that kind of makes sense, doesn’t it?). And, Harris tells us, in modern Sweden pain medication is the choice of the mother and “birth is seen as the woman’s accomplishment.” And prenatal care and midwife-attended births are free to all women there. Hmmm, what a concept.

On that note, I’ll say here that the book walks a nice line between the typical Western medical, OB-attended model of birth and the more natural, alternative midwife/homebirth model, as well as the line between the typical American diet and the vegetarian-type ones. While she leans more toward the mainstream, it’s nice to see her actually mentioning vegetarians and midwives as valid alternatives (perhaps even a little subliminal messaging in these tidbits about “other cultures”?). Those on the natural side will need their Penny Simkin, Sheila Kitzinger and Ina May Gaskin books to supplement this for sure, but I like that at least the more lefty ways of eating and birthing are recognized.

In short, The Pregnancy Journal is a great book to have on hand during any pregnancy – as a teaching tool, a reminder and an eye-opener about the daily changes and bigger picture. I have to admit, with all I have going on, I’m not using the journal questions so much, but just using it as an information source and check-in on child #2’s development inside as I care for child #1 out here. I’d think different women would use it in different ways, depending on personality and time constraints, etc., but it is nicely flexible for anyone.

I’ll also add that when I received this book from the publisher I realized that it was by the same author of the book I had with child #1, Baby’s First Year Journal, which was also wonderful to have (and I did use more as a journal, jotting down milestones to someday transfer to an actual baby book).

Anyway, thanks to MotherTalk for taking on this book, and thumbs up and thanks to A. Christine Harris for The Pregnancy Journal. It’s getting me and baby #2 off to a nice start. (And that is enough!)

Entry filed under: Uncategorized.

Fathers, Teachers Stay-cation!

8 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Shawn  |  June 20, 2008 at 2:28 am

    Awesome! Congrats!! I think in your last email you thought it was PMS or that … so glad to see you’re happy with THAT result. Better you than me since the 2s are not being very kind to me these days. Hope your having a lovely, healthy pregnancy. Take it easy.

    Oh, and congrats on the Mothering essay; what issue?

  • […] Having Enough says, “The book walks a nice line between the typical Western medical, OB-attended model of birth and the more natural, alternative midwife/homebirth model, as well as the line between the typical American diet and the vegetarian-type ones.” […]

  • 3. Elrena  |  June 20, 2008 at 1:59 pm

    Ohhh, Megan!!! Congratulations! I am so excited for you, I can’t even say. 🙂 I think this might be the first new Mama, PhD baby, too!

    And congratulations on your article! I actually have a piece coming out in the next online version of Mothering — that’s about, get this, my experiences with the birth of my second child, and tandem nursing. Small, small world!!

    Congratulations again, this made my day.

  • 4. Sugar  |  June 21, 2008 at 3:58 am


    I keep my Pregnancy Journal with all of my writing and inspiration books. It’s amazing to read the little thoughts that passed through my mind as I was waiting for my Hannah.

    Enjoy your last summer with one!

  • 5. rowena  |  June 21, 2008 at 3:17 pm

    Congratulations. I am in awe that you have been so productive in your first trimester. Both times, I could barely get up off the couch.

    Here’s wishing you a happy pregnancy and a healthy baby.

  • 6. Megan  |  June 21, 2008 at 3:45 pm

    Aw, thank you, friends! Feeling good but, yes, already thinking about cutting back on all the activities once summer ends and DH goes back to school. Going to be proactive with maternity leave this time around!

    And, Shawn, it will be in the next issue (knock wood, but that’s what they said!). And, yes, that really grumpy day was not PMS after all! 🙂

  • 7. The Writer Mama  |  June 28, 2008 at 3:32 pm

    Congrats to the family! Very exciting news.

    I don’t know a thing about the barefoot books…did you talk about it elsewhere?

    Love to hear more…

    Happy summer!

  • 8. Megan  |  June 29, 2008 at 2:52 am

    Thanks for the query, WM! I did write about Barefoot Books here:

    My Barefoot site is:

    Let me know if you have any questions. I’m really enjoying surrounding myself in these fabulous books for kids. A nice, different brain energy sharing books than writing for books! 😉


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To spark conversation about redefining success (as individuals, families and institutions) and to counter "never enough" messages currently circulating in our culture.

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Megan Pincus Kajitani: Writer, Editor, Former Academic Overachiever and Career Counselor, Mom, Wife, Feminist, Gen Xer, Californian who believes that change is possible View Megan Pincus Kajitani's profile on LinkedIn

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