Week 23 . A window into your womb would reveal that your baby’s skin is a bit saggy, hanging, loosely from his or her little body. That’s because skin grows faster than fat develops, and there’s not much fat to fill that skin out yet. But don’t worry – the fat is about to start catching up.
Beginning this week, your baby (who is around 8 inches long and just over a pound in weight ) begins to pack on the pounds (which means you will, too!). In fact, by month’s end, your baby will be double the weight he or she now (fortunately, you won’t be ).
Once those fat deposits are made, your baby will be a less transparent, too. Right now, the organs and bones can still be seen through the skin, which has red hue thanks to the developing blood veins and arteries just underneath. But by month 8, no more see through baby!
Week 24. At a weight of one and a half pounds and a length of about eight and a half inches, your baby has outgrown the fruit references and is now the size of a standard letter (but would take a lot more than a standard stamp to mail ).
Baby’s weekly weight gain is now about 6 ounces – not quite as much as you are putting on, but getting a lot closer. Much of that weight is coming from accumulating baby fat, as well as from growing organs, bones, and muscle.
By now, your baby’s tiny face is almost fully formed, and achingly adorable – complete with a full set of eyelashes and eyebrows and a good sprinkling of hair on that head. Is your a brunette, a blond, or a redhead? Actually, right now, he or she’s snow white, since there’s no pigment in that hair just yet.
Week 25. Baby’s growing by leaps and bounds (and inches and ounces ), this week reaching 9 inches in length and more than one and a half pounds in weight. And there are exciting developments on the horizon, too.
Capillaries are forming under the skin and filling with blood. By week’s end, air sacs lined with capillaries will also develop in your baby’s lungs, getting them ready for that first breath or fresh air. Mind you, those lungs are not ready for prime- time breathing yet – and they have a lot of maturing left to do before they will be. Though they are already beginning to develop surfactant, a substance that will help them expand after birth, your baby’s lungs are still too undeveloped to sufficiently send oxygen to the bloodstream and release carbon dioxide from the blood (aka breathe ).
And talking about breathing, your’s baby’s nostril’s which have been plugged up until now, are starting to open this week. This enables your baby to begin taking practice “breaths.” Your baby’s vocal cords are functioning now, leading to occasional hiccups (which you’ll certainly be feeling).
Week 26. Next time you’re browsing through the meat department, pick up a 2 – pound chuck roast. No, not for dinner – just so you can get a sense of how big your baby is this week. That’s right – your baby now weighs a full 2 pounds and measures in at 9-plus inches long .
Another momentous development this week : Your baby’s eyes are beginning to open. The eyelids have been fused for the past few months (so the retina, the part of the eyes that allow images to come into focus, could develop). The colored part of the eye (the iris) still doesn’t have much pigmentation, so it’s too early to start guessing your baby’s eye color. Still, your baby is now able to see – though there’s not much to see in the dark confines of his or her uterine home.
But with the heightened sense of sight and hearing that your baby now possesses, you may notice and increase in activity when your baby sees a bright light or hears a loud noise. In fact, if a loud vibrating noise is brought close to your belly, your baby will respond by blinking and startling.
Week 27. Your baby graduates onto a new growth chart this week. No longer will he or she be measured crown to rump, but rather from head to toe. And this week that head-to-toe length is a full 15 inches (more than a foot long)!
Your baby’s weight is creeping up the charts as well, coming in at just over 2 pounds this week. And hear’s an interesting fetal factoid: your baby has more fact buds now than he or she will have at birth (and beyond). Which means that not only your baby is able to taste the difference in the amniotic fluid when you eat different foods, he or she might even react to it. For instance, some baby respond to spicy foods by hiccuping. Or by kicking when they get that spicy kick.