HEFT A PINEAPPLE/HONEYDEW
The Bump: Baby’s senses are continuing to improve -- when light peeks in through your (extremely) stretched belly, those tiny eyelids and irises blink and dilate. And, baby can now recognize and react to simple songs… time to start practicing your lullabies! Growth (at least inside your womb) is starting to slow, and you may notice baby descend into your pelvis at the end of this month.
Baby Center: This week your baby weighs a little over 4 pounds (heft a pineapple) and has passed the 17-inch mark. He's rapidly losing that wrinkled, alien look and his skeleton is hardening. The bones in his skull aren't fused together, which allows them to move and slightly overlap, thus making it easier for him to fit through the birth canal. (The pressure on the head during birth is so intense that many babies are born with a conehead-like appearance.) These bones don't entirely fuse until early adulthood, so they can grow as his brain and other tissue expands during infancy and childhood.
Parents.com: Your baby's preparing for his arrival in just a few short weeks! This week, the protective vernix caseosa (that cheeselike, white, waxy coating that's keeping his skin safe) begins to thicken, ensuring his birthday suit stays smooth and well-moisturized during D-day. Your baby will likely arrive covered in the stuff, especially in the folds under his arms, behind his ears, and in the groin area. But it'll all be washed off very shortly after birth -- during his first-ever bath. By now, your baby weighs around 5 pounds and may be as long as 20 inches, head to toe.
Baby Center: Your baby now weighs about 4 3/4 pounds (like your average cantaloupe) and is almost 18 inches long. Her fat layers — which will help regulate her body temperature once she's born — are filling her out, making her rounder. Her skin is also smoother than ever. Her central nervous system is maturing and her lungs are continuing to mature as well. If you've been nervous about preterm labor, you'll be happy to know that babies born between 34 and 37 weeks who have no other health problems generally do fine. They may need a short stay in the neonatal nursery and may have a few short-term health issues, but in the long run, they usually do as well as full-term babies.
On another note: Joe's just about down with all of the walls in the nursery! About time, huh?!
Next step this week is to paint and go look at carpet, & get it installed! I said this all had to get done before the baby shower...which is in 5 more days. Fingers crossed we get it all just about done by then.