Saturday, December 16, 2017

My, oh, my!

Well, things sure have changed around here.
Let's summarize.
First Born: 1/5/15 -- beautiful baby girl, 8.0 lbs 20.25 inches. She is now less than a month away from her 3rd birthday.

Second Born: 10/4/16 -- my little man, 11.1 lbs (yep), 21.75 inches.  This guy is 14 months old. He is my protector, my best dude, just incredible.

 My message with those of you trying to decide if you should have a baby: There's never going to be a right time. If your heart feels it, it's right. Babies are your heart. It's always going to be hard. It's always going to hurt (physically, financially, emotionally...), but the love and joy cancel out all the bad.

If you've discovered me, stay tuned. Read my thoughts from years ago when I couldn't make up my mind and then stick around to see where we're going from here.

Friday, March 4, 2016

Round two!

It looks like Bryson is going to be a big sister! We weren't actively trying to have another baby, but I suppose we weren't trying very hard not to. I guess I just didn't expect it, but here we go. Bryson will be 14 months old tomorrow and I am almost 9 weeks pregnant. She will be 21 months older than her sibling if the due date is correct. Currently, Baby 2 is due October 9. I can't wait to start on this journey again. 

So many little details about pregnancy had left my mind since I haven't experienced the early stages of pregnancy in nearly 2 years. Like my aching tailbone. Totally forgot about that. The mind is such a crazy thing. I thought I would have every memory stuck in my mind like cement, but it is more like they are buried in a dusty library. Slowly, one by one, they are being uncovered and brushed off and brought to the surface again. My boobs had just recovered from breastfeeding and they are swelling up again. I had so looked forward to sleeping on my stomach since I don't have to worry about milk leaks... and here comes the heartburn that makes me need to stay upright.  

Really, I didn't feel bad with Bryson at all. I was pretty cocky about it. I thought I was a super woman because I wasn't tired, wasn't nauseous, wasn't anything but myself with less coffee and beer (lol).  This round, I've had a lot of stomach discomfort...pretty rough for one week and now I just live in the world of the ho-naus. My reference to the ever present, hovering nausea that has become part of my life. I suppose I'm not super woman. I've heard that second pregnancies tend to be a bit rougher. However, it's nothing I can't take. I love food and coffee too much to let it take over, so I just eat through the nausea and hope for the best. The only thing I haven't handled well has been the fatigue. I feel like I haven't slept in 4 weeks. Partly because I usually drink 3-4 cups of coffee per day and I've had to reduce to only 1 cup. I'm definitely on the upswing, but so very looking forward to feeling like myself again.

I loved the newborn expereince, and I'm really looking forward to going through it again with new eyes. With Bryson, everything was a shock, brand-new, scary. Now, I have experience and I know that most of the time, the answer to my worries is just that she's a baby and babies just cry (hiccup, burp, cry, spit-up, cry, have runny diapers, cry, etc...) and it's not that I'm doing anything wrong.  I have a great support system of my husband and both our parents.  The baby world is so rewarding.

Here we go again!

Saturday, January 23, 2016

Another Chicken Noodle Soup Recipe

A Small Twist on Chicken Noodle Soup

3 large chicken breasts
6 cups of water
3 chicken bouillon cubes
1/2 onion chopped
3 cloves garlic chopped
6 large carrots chopped
6 stalks of celery chopped
1 tsp powdered thyme
3 tbs seasoned salt
1 tsp italian seasoning
2 tbs curry powder
1 cup of orzo noodles

1. Boil chicken breasts with bouillon cubes, onion and garlic until chicken is tender enough to shred. (About 20-25 minutes).

2.  Remove the chicken and shred. I think its easier to chop against the striation of the meat instead of pulling it apart with a fork. It naturally shreds this way. Put shredded chicken aside.  You will be adding it back in a moment. Not yet.

3. Add carrots, celery, and all the seasonings. Let this boil until it starts to tender up.

4. Put the chicken back in a let it boil/simmer a little bit longer (ten minutes).

5. Add the orzo. The soup is ready when the orzo is done. (another ten minutes)

Sunday, November 29, 2015

10 Meals Under 10 Ingredients

13 Bean Soup with Ham & Corn Bread

(The 13 Bean Soup counts as one ingredient because it is one item you buy)

Add 24 ounces of water to your slow cooker and add ingredients 1-4. Cook 8 hours on high in slow cooker

1. Bob's Red Mill 13 Bean Soup Mix
2. Salt to taste
3. Worcestershire sauce to taste ( I used about 1/8 cup)
4. 8 ounce ham steak chopped into little cubes

Mix the following ingredients and bake at 400 degrees for 18-20 minutes or until golden brown and a toothpick comes out clean

5. 1 cup self-rising flour
6. 1 cup cornmeal
7. 1 cup milk
8. 1/3 cup oil
9. 1 egg
10. 2/3 cup sugar

Sunday Nights

Is Monday Night Blues a real disease?

Saturday, September 27, 2014

How coffee stole my pregnancy symptoms

The first 12-15ish weeks of my pregnancy, I really didn’t have many symptoms. According to every book, website, blog, human being, and brochure out there, thousands of pregnancy symptoms that one could or should be experiencing were sailing right past me. Heightened sense of smell, sore boobs, fatigue, nausea, mood swings, food cravings, food aversions, bloating, constipation, etc. I would tell people I feel great! I feel just like myself except for the part where everyone is constantly asking me how I am feeling and trying to keep me from overexerting myself. (I was not good at changing my lifestyle to accommodate baby brewing, but that’s another story.)
I believe that coffee is to blame (and to thank) for me being pretty comfortable during my first trimester. To coin a new word, I’m a coffeeophile. I love my coffee. I had read and been told that caffeine has to be limited when you’re pregnant so as soon as I found out, I dropped from a full 8-cup pot in the morning and 2 cups in the afternoon after work, to none at all. Maybe you can infer that my body was in a minor state of shock from the sudden reduction in caffeine. One of the main things I’ve heard women discuss about pregnancy is how tired it makes them. The lady who does my nails told me she didn’t want to get pregnant again because she doesn’t ever want to feel that tired again. Well, all I noticed was that suddenly I wasn’t quite as chipper at 5:30 a.m. as I used to be, but by the time I was ready for work, it didn’t bother me all that much. I would really begin to drag around 3:00 when my second round was due, but once again, it didn’t occur to me that it could be pregnancy making me tired. I still don’t know if I had a magical first trimester or if the cold turkey drop of coffee overshadowed baby-growing fatigue.
The second way coffee stole my pregnancy symptoms is the constipation. Ready for some TMI? I’m a person of routine and rituals…when I feel like it, but my morning routine is one that I treasure. This is why coffee was such a hard loss at first. I would get up and my husband would already have the coffee pot automatically set to brew from me. I pour a cup, walk out with my dogs on the back porch, take a couple sips and start maniacally calling the dogs back in as fast as possible because it’s my turn for the morning potty break. Like clockwork I was so regular, sip coffee, go to the bathroom… So, maybe you didn’t want to know that, but you can see that when I eliminated coffee from the routine, I also eliminated the ability to, well, eliminate. Or did I? I know that constipation is an issue throughout most pregnancy due to the growing uterus and from all the hormones we are producing as a small person-factory. For the first 12 weeks of my pregnancy, I was also taking an extra dose of progesterone each morning and night as a precaution to help keep my baby stuck in their tightly since I had miscarried the first time. So for all I know, coffee has nothing to do with my regularity…or does it?

When I hit 12 weeks and no more progesterone suppositories (messy buggers, those!) we celebrated. Well, we didn’t celebrate the end of the suppositories so much as we celebrated my birthday. It happened to coincide the same weekend so we took a quick trip to the beach. Oh, the beach. I don’t have to go to the water to be the happiest clam on the shore. I love to sit on the balcony and drink. Coffee!  My fast was over. We made a pot of coffee, went out on the balcony to survey our weekend kingdom, took a long-missed sip and BAM. I was in the bathroom for the next 20 minutes and for much of the rest of the weekend, but let me tell you… I have never had a better trip! Coffee was immediately reinstated, is a much lower quantity than previously consumed as a regular part of my morning routine and I’ve felt great ever since ☺

Sunday, September 21, 2014

Beautifully out of control

I was just thinking about pregnancy. How can anyone experiencing their first pregnancy not?! It seems to have totally consumed my life. That’s what I was most scared of, I think, when it all began. However, now my thoughts which are all consumed are not of fear of the loss of control. I had a realization earlier about it all. The beautiful thing about pregnancy is that we are so blissfully out of control. How amazing is it that from the common occurrence of the union of a man and a woman, a brand new person is what emerges later into the world. Thousands of people have sex every day without conceiving a child. Some for their whole lifetimes are never given the blessing.  My husband and I probably had sex a thousand times or more without ever conceiving a child, but just one egg and one sperm, totally microscopic, and totally random join. Once they meet, motherhood is a spectator sport until that child is born. We just sit back and watch our bodies perform a miracle. It is not a comfortable miracle by any means, but what doesn’t come with some sort of price?

However, it’s not random. It only seems that way. They join without us telling them when or which ones. We have no control at all past the love that we share together. All that we have to do is love- each other, and then later the child we are given. The control is that somewhere in God’s plan he has chosen the child for us to raise and nurture.

I love that God takes the reins on this one. I love knowing that stepping back and trusting in him will produce me the greatest blessing of my life. I am so thankful that I am part of the larger plan. When I first found out we were having a girl, I was disappointed. I really was wanting a boy because they just seemed so much easier and more fun. (I’m not a ‘girly’ girl by any means!)  I’m terrified of girls. I know exactly what they’re like and OH MY GOSH! What a lot of work. But God believed that my husband and I need to raise a girl as our oldest and first. How incredibly special?! The idea that I thought I couldn’t handle and wouldn't be good at is what God actually chose for me. How out of control is that?

I love watching my body grow, knowing that all I have to do is stay healthy and God provides the rest. Thank You for that. My love just overflows all the time here recently. I am so thankful that I have been able to live my groovelove life through faith in him. Trusting that everything will be all right is the way to get through the fear and the pressure I felt at the beginning. This is a huge task, but I’m not alone. I’m not in control, but I don’t need to be.