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Presbyterians Protecting Life - P.O. Box 461 - Glenshaw, PA 15116 - (412) 487-1990

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THE BABY CHRIS PROJECT

INTRODUCTION

Each week between March 25 - the Day of the Unborn - and December 25 - Christmas - PPL will join with other pro-life advocates to showcase the developmental stages of "Baby Chris" in the womb.

PPL will have a blog post highlighting each week of development, as well as a link to videos and other educational resources.  

For the richest experience:

  • Go to the Apple or Android app store and download the "See Baby" app

  • Check back here weekly to learn more about each week's developmental milestone

  • Be on the lookout for the #BabyChris updates on social media

  • Get started with the intro week 1 video, "Fertilization the Epic Story of All of Us" and

  • Be sure to share this information with your friends and family

37  Weeks

39 Weeks

38 Weeks

40 Weeks

Weeks 37-40

At thirty-seven weeks,

  • Hair is full at this point with locks up to an inch or two; but some babies are born without any hair at all!

  • The umbilical cord is now passing antibodies to your baby to help protect him from disease and germs that he will be exposed to after birth. 

At thirty-eight weeks

  • The placenta is now at its full size and is spread out flat against your uterus. 

  • The bones have hardened (ossified). 

At thirty-nine weeks,​

  • All organ systems are developed and ready for life outside the womb.

  • The head will soon be settled into a downward position lower in the uterus. 

  • Between 38 and 42 weeks is the range of time that is considered normal and safe to deliver by medical professionals. 

At forty weeks, ​

  • The amniotic sac will rupture. This is also known as your water breaking.

  • The Skull will remain soft and pliable for delivery  through the birth canal.

29  Weeks

31 Weeks

30 Weeks

32  Weeks

Weeks 29-32

At twenty-nine weeks,

  • The umbilical cord is constantly coiling, but it will not crimp or cut off circulation because of Wharton's jelly, a gelatinous substance.

  • The bones are still soft and pliable, but are beginning to harden.

  • The head is getting bigger to accommodate the growing brain as it adds billion of neurons.

At thirty weeks

  • The body hair that covers baby’s body (lanugo) is beginning to disappear.

  • The amniotic sac has stopped growing and the amniotic fluid will start to decrease as baby fills out the uterus.

At thirty-one weeks,​

  • The uterus may tighten and contract periodically. It is common to experience these Braxton Hicks contractions in the third trimester.

  • The legs still have space to be fully stretched out but periodically cross or curl up over baby's head.

  • The nervous system can now control his body temperature rather than relying on the temperature of the amniotic fluid.

At thirty two weeks, ​

  • The toenails & fingernails have completely developed to their final form.

  • The skin is becoming soft and smooth 

33  Weeks

35 Weeks

34 Weeks

36  Weeks

Weeks 33-36

At thirty-three weeks,

  •  Baby will add about a half a pound per week until birth.

  • The amniotic fluid is being digested in the amount of about a pint a day now.

  • His fingernails are now long and may scratch his face before birth.

  • The skull bones are pliable and unfused, allowing them to move and slightly overlap making it easier to fit through the birth canal.

At thirty-four weeks

  • The amniotic fluid has reached its maximum level and will decrease in the coming week to make room for baby's growth.

  • Almost all babies born prematurely at 34 weeks will survive without complications.

At thirty-five weeks,​

  • Fat accumulation is the predominant focus of  baby's development at this stage.

  • The lungs are currently filled with fluid which will be eliminated when he takes his first breath.

At thirty-six weeks, ​

  • The uterus is crowded as baby grows making it harder for your baby to move. 

  • The head is most likely pointed down, lower in the pelvis, at this stage which is ideal for natural delivery.

 

There is a #BabyChris blog corresponding to each developmental week, but only the most recent 6 weeks are posted on this page.  To read blog posts for other weeks not shown, click here and use the "More" drop down menu

25  Weeks

27 Weeks

26 Weeks

28  Weeks

Weeks 25-28

At twenty-five weeks,

  • His skin is pinker because capillaries are forming

  • Baby's nostrils are now open

  • He is still moving freely in the womb and frequently changes position

At twenty-six weeks

  • He is now growing longer and laying on more fat

  • His eyes now open and close; newborns have a "wide-open gaze"

  • Sweet snacks, loud noises or a parent's voice can prompt baby's activity

  • He may have hiccups

At twenty-seven weeks,​

  • Baby's retinas mature, making him more sensitive to light

  • His thumb-sucking is no longer random, but is intentional self-soothing

At twenty-eight weeks, ​

  • His head is now in proportion to his body.

  • Brain development continues rapidly

  • He has REM (Rapid Eye Movement) during sleep phases (what does he dream about?)

 

21  Weeks

23 Weeks

22 Weeks

24  Weeks

Weeks 21-24

At twenty-one weeks,

  • Muscles and brain syncing; movements are less random

  • Tooth buds are forming

  • Eyelashes and hair are white (no pigment yet)

At twenty-two weeks

  • He's thumb-sucking, holding onto his umbilical cord, hiccuping, & practising grasping

  • Fingernails appear

  • His testes are descending

At twenty-three weeks,​

  • Baby's lungs continue to develop - surfactant is forming to help keep his alveoli open after birth

  • Ears are fully functioning and baby may startle from loud noises

At twenty-four weeks, ​

  • He has lots of body and facial hair that will be reabsorbed before birth.

  • He is now growing at about the same rate he will grow in the first weeks after birth

  • Babies born at 24-weeks or later need specialist care, but the long-term health effects of premature birth have been greatly reduced.

17  Weeks

19 Weeks

18 Weeks

20  Weeks

Weeks 17-20

At seventeen weeks,

  • He can touch his own face and suck his thumb

  • He is inhaling and exhaling amniotic fluid as he learns to breathe.

  • Fat tissue is accumulating

  • Eyes are beginning to move under eyelids and ears detect sound.

At eighteen weeks

  • Nerves are starting to develop myelin, a fatty substance that insulates them, protects the nerve cells and speeds up communication between them.  This is very important for the developing brain.

  • He responds to music!

At nineteen weeks,​

  • Sensory development - smell, taste, hearing, vision and touch - is exploding! 

  • Arms and legs are in proportion to each other and the rest of his body now.

At twenty weeks, ​

  • He's swallowing molecules of food that have passed through into the amniotic fluid.

  • Developing food taste preferences

  • The skeleton is hardening and making bone marrow

  • He has a wake-sleep cycle and can be awakened by loud noises

 

13  Weeks

14 Weeks

15 Weeks

16  Weeks

Weeks 13-16

At thirteen weeks,

  • touch receptors start to form in other places throughout  baby’s body his genitals, palms and the soles of his feet.  Fingers and toes are well-defined. Skin layers are now close to adult quality. Vocal cords are forming. Female infants already have ovaries with hundreds of thousands of eggs.  (The pregnant mother of a female child is carrying generations of human relatives!)  

At fourteen weeks

  • Baby Chris is the size of Mom's fist. It's all about hair now as he sprouts some on his head, eyebrows and body. 

At fifteen weeks,​

  • Throughout pregnancy, your baby's hair actually goes through two cycles of shedding and regrowth. A precise pattern emerges, with all follicles perfectly and evenly spaced (in fact, not a single follicle forms after birth).

At sixteen weeks, ​

  • This week baby's eyesight (and eyelashes!) are developing rapidly.   His first sucking and swallowing impulses kick in around 16 weeks. 

  • He pees about every 40 minutes

  • Miscarriage risk drops to less than 1%.

9  Weeks

11 Weeks

10 Weeks

12  Weeks

Weeks 9-12

At nine weeks,

  • Your baby is no longer an "embryo" - he is now described as a "fetus".  He's already got all his  major organs, which will continue to grow and develop.  He is starting to have more distinct facial featuresTestes and ovaries begin to grow.

At ten weeks

  • Baby now has working arm joints, and cartilage and bones are forming, and he has fingerprints.  Vital organs are fully developed and starting to function.  He has fingernails and hair, and is practicing swallowing and kicking!

At eleven weeks,​

  • Baby's skin is becoming more opaque and fingers and toes are no longer webbed.  He is now developing tooth buds, nail beds and hair follicles.  .

At twelve weeks, ​

  • This is a time of rapid development: fingers curl, eyelids and genitals appear.  His kidneys begin producing urine.

5  Weeks

7 Weeks

6  Weeks

8  Weeks

Weeks 5-8

At five weeks,

  •  He's already starting to form major organs—heart, stomach, liver, and kidneys—and systems—digestive, circulatory, and nervous). In the next week, the baby will double in size

At six weeks

  • The eyes, nostrils, and arms are taking shape, and he might even be wiggling his paddle-like hands and feet.

At seven weeks,​

  • This week the mouth and face continue to form, arm and leg joints are beginning to form, and the trachea and bronchi of the lungs have formed

At eight weeks, ​

  • The baby's arms and legs are now moving around like crazy!  Fingers and toes are now only slightly webbed, and his tail (yes, there was one) is gone. Baby's taste buds are now forming, gearing up for his first meals.  His heart is beating around 170 beats per minute!

WEEK FOUR

The brain continues growing at an incredible rate. Between 4 and 5 weeks, During this time, the head makes up about one-third of the embryo’s entire size. An early form of the cerebellum appears by 4 to 4½ weeks; this area of the brain will later control muscle control and coordination.​

WEEK THREE

Early blood vessels form throughout the embryo as the network of the early circulatory system begins to take shape,  About 3 weeks, one day after fertilization, when the heart first begins to beat, the sound of the little heart is too soft to hear. Very soon thereafter, they can see the motion using ultrasound technology.

By 3 weeks the neural plate thickens first at the head end of the embryo and folds into the neural tube which will form the brain and the spinal cord.  By 3 weeks, the 3 primary sections of the brain are identifiable. 

 

WEEK TWO

 

By day 17 the central portion of the thyroid gland appears. This important gland will soon regulate the rate of metabolism throughout the rest of the human life cycle.

The site of future brain development is first recognizable with the appearance of the neural plate by 2 weeks, 4 days. 

 

WEEK ONE

A single sperm out of millions joins together with an egg in one of the mother's Fallopian tubes. The fertilized egg (called a zygote), then travels to the uterus by about the 5th day, where it implants in the uterine lining.  At this point the zygote has divided several times into a multi-celled embryo. The embryo has a unique DNA made up of the DNA of both parents, Each cell of the embryo contains a complete set of the new DNA.  If we could uncoil all of the DNA within an adult's 100 trillion cells, it would extend over 63 billion miles. This distance reaches from the earth to the sun and back 340 times.