Monday, October 24, 2011

Seasons of Change

In One Year,

April 2010 – I started looking for a job

June 10 – We went on vacation to North Carolina for Allie’s wedding

July - Brian joined the Coast Guard Reserves

July 31 - We moved in with my in-laws

August 4 - We found out we were expecting our first child

August 15 - I started a new job teaching high school Algebra

August 31 – Brian left for boot camp

October 12 – I totaled my car

October 28 – Went to New Jersey because Brian graduated boot camp

November 6 – I bought a new car

November 16 – We found out we were expecting a boy

November 19 – I had emergency surgery to remove my appendix

December – We started looking for a house to buy in Austin

January – We started looking for a house to buy in New Braunfels

January – 15 We went hiking in the Guadalupe Mountains

February 5 – We closed on a house in New Braunfels

February 26 – We moved into our new house

February 28 – Brian started a new job in San Antonio

March 20 – We thought we were going to have to move to Virginia in May (called off)

March 22 – I was put on bed rest

April 12 – William was due

April 15 – William was born

August 15 – I went back to work

On the Holes-Rahe scale, we were through the roof. Many of these life changes were unwanted on my part and my sense of security was threadbare. It is only with the firm foundation of faith and family that I stayed sane at all, but Brian would tell you that I wasn’t a very happy person or probably much fun to be around. Thankfully, we are now moving past this season of rapidfire changes and it’s been more than a year since many of the topsy-turvies occurred. Sure life is still stressful, but it’s a predictable stress and I’m much more content with it.

What does life look like now? I’m the mother of a 6 month old teething, babbling, crawling bundle of love. I teach math to high school freshmen every other day and stay home the other days which gives me the time to participate in activities I enjoy. I’m married to a wonderful man who is much happier in his current job than he was at his old one and has enough projects to keep him busy for the next 10 years. I am so glad that I live in New Braunfels and not weirdo Austin, and that I have a strong support network and group of friends that live here too. God willing, William will be the only one changing at hyperspeed for quite a while and we will stay put for some time, you know, unless another baby comes our way.

Monday, August 29, 2011

Fun at Home


I just spent the last ten minutes in the midst of the most fun procession I've been a part of. It consisted of me marching through my home holding Will rear facing so he could watch the dogs and Sandy, my clingy but loyal Labrador following behind. She matched us step for step all around the house as I sung "We're following the leader, the leader, the leader..." a la Peter Pan. I never told her to come, mind you, that's just what she does. Eddie, the Jack Russell joined in as it suited him then would run off to check out something more interesting. Will thought the whole thing was fabulous what with the ride, the show, and mommy's melody. We went around and around the dining table, upstairs then down, in and out of bedrooms, touring our house.

Sure, I've got a few things on a to-do list for the day, and that activity wasn't one of them, but there's nothing I'd rather be doing than going through life (or the library) with my little family here at home. (I do wish Brian were here to join in, but alas, at least one of us has to work full time.) I just wanted to record this moment, because it's not something that's going to make the baby book, I won't put it on Will's milestone calendar, but it is a great example of the joy I'm finding in this stage of his life.

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Saturday Morning Scene

This is Will sleeping with abandon until it almost wasn't Saturday morning anymore! I was getting so bored that I contemplated waking him up so I would have someone to play with but I refrained. He did finally wake up about 30 minutes ago and is sitting with me listening to 90's radio on Pandora and admiring pictures of himself. Normally Brian and I would sit on the deck and drink coffee and capitalize on our baby's late sleeping habits, but he is in Corpus for his drill weekend, then drill two-weeks starts tomorrow. I'll be heading down there to join him then.
Does anyone know if it's possible to blog from an iPad? I haven't figured out how yet and that's all I'll have available to me for a while.

Friday, July 8, 2011

Our 4th of July weekend in pictures

Grammy and Gramps came in town


we hung out at the lakehouse

we watched the parade downtown


anyone can make a "float"

We watched the boat parade from the dock. Megan and James rode in it

We rode on the boat and went tubing
We were having so much fun we decided to skip the Riverwalk and just go to dinner in town. Then we decided to skip dinner in town to have bbq at the lake. So the anniversary wasn't celebrated in the traditional sense, but we enjoyed each others company very much and we did exchange gifts. I got an iPad!

Monday, July 4, 2011

Happy Anniversary, my love!

I've spent the two best years of my life married to my wonderful husband! 4th of July 2009 was the day that we created our family and I couldn't be happier with the life we lead. The fireworks you see tonight are for us, don't you know?




Friday, July 1, 2011

Happy 11 Week Birthday

For Will's birthday this week, I made a tri-berry trifle out of angel food cake, blueberries, raspberries and strawberries. I asked for suggestions on Facebook and my sweet cousin Janice recommended it in celebration of 4th of July. It was super easy and I might make another one to take over to the lake house on Monday. I got some other suggestions that I'll be making in coming weeks. Here's how it turned out.
And here's part of how he spent his day- cooing.

video


Since I forgot to blog about them the last couple weeks, I made a devils food cake for his 9th week and a pineapple upside down cake for his 10th.

7 Quick Takes

~1~
The blueberry soup I made on Wednesday for dinner sort of flopped even though my husband and our guest said they really enjoyed it. The leftovers, however, made an excellent cocktail last night blended with rum and Sun Drop soda. I might make another batch just for the drinks.

~2~
I'm not at all ready to leave Will for "date night" and certainly not over night yet. The fact that people keep insisting they be allowed to babysit soon is starting to piss me off. It's like they want to spend time with my baby but want me to gtfo.

~3~
I am slowly and surely becoming "greener" and "crunchier." It seems to follow easily from wanting a natural start for my son. Whatever efforts we undertake in that area or changes we implement I can swear on my mother's life it will stop short of using family cloth. I draw the line way short of laundering my husband's you know what.

~4~
I'm thinking about getting this monogrammed jon jon in her wedding colors for Will to wear to my cousin's wedding. Wouldn't that be darling? But the fact that I spent sooo much money and wasted energy ordering my bridesmaid dress makes me want to throw a $3 onesie on him and call it good. I said I was going to write a separate post to tell you about that experience and I did, but didn't post it because it was one big whine fest. Being blogging-style girls though, I imagine a lot of you have probably done a good bit of online shopping. Have you ever had to call to confirm an order you placed and paid for online? After receiving an email confirmation for a phone order, have you ever had to print it, sign it and fax it back? No? Me neither until I dealt with this dress company. Plus I had to spend $40 rush shipping because I didn't follow those directions right the first time and the dress will only get here about 2 weeks sooner than it would have, still almost 3 months. Ok, apparently I wrote the whine fest after all, but it's much better in a quick take I think than a whole devoted post.

~5~
These are our plans for this weekend:
Friday- finally go to the free dance class I've been wanting to go to for weeks and haven't been able to.
Saturday - take a trip to the farmer's market, more for entertainment than actual shopping this time. Have dinner somewhere on the Riverwalk and spend the night at the Drury Plaza there for our 2 year anniversary (which is actually on Monday) Yes, Will is coming with us. No you can't babysit.
Sunday - meet my mom and dad at Mass and hang out with them. Maybe play at the river, I hope!
Monday - watch the 4th of July parade in town, then go to the lake house to watch the boat parade. Grill and play with Brian's family and my parents. Celebrate our freedom. Make up times that Will needs to eat just so I can get some hold time in with him away from all the baby-hungry loved ones.

~6~
I desperately want an iPad. I was just about ready to talk myself into deciding it was too expensive and I shouldn't get one when my husband said he thinks "it's necessary" especially for the 2 weeks we'll be in Corpus with no tv or internet. So now it looks like I really will get one! Sure, I'll likely just use it to play games and maybe read books, but I'm excited that I'll be current with technology for once!

~7~
I'm super sad that my bestie moved to North Carolina to stay. I know I wouldn't have actually seen her anyway since she lived in Denton before this, but knowing that she's that far away makes me miss her like crazy. I wish we were back in the days when a quick bike ride was the only thing that separated us. Chatting a long time yesterday helped, but I want to start planning when we can take a trip up there so we can meet each others babies! Her's is coming in October!

Thursday, June 30, 2011

Family Photos

I mentioned that our friends the McNabbs came to town this weekend and that we had a great time with them! I can't wait to meet their little boy Pierce who is due in September. Jared McNabb has a photography business and offered to take pictures of William as a baby gift to us. We were so glad to accept and we spent a good part of the weekend taking pictures of our little boy and then of the whole family. None of us is particularly photogenic. Brian and I found that out about ourselves when taking engagement pictures and confirmed it during wedding, and then maternity pictures. William has been known to smile beautifully right up until a camera is held up and then make as dull of face as possible. He did that for Jared too unfortunately, but he was so much better than any other photographer we've worked with at helping us look natural in front of the camera and waiting for us to make just the right face before taking his shot. I was very comfortable posing and had so much fun with it. Here are some of my favorite pictures from the baby shoot and from our family shoot.








I'm having the hardest time trying to pick which pictures I want to print to display in our home, but I'm pretty sure that last one will be our Christmas card this year.

Please go check out the rest of the pictures on his blog www.jaredmcnabbphoto.com/blog. If you're looking for a photographer I strongly recommend Jared! He's located in Houston but he and Erin love to travel.

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

What a lovely day

Will and I have been enjoying a particularly nice day today!
It started out with our sweet friends Brooke, Maggie and Clare coming over to play. They had a good time. I am really looking forward to the day when Will can actually play and interact with me or with other kids. I think it will be so fun. For today though Will and Clare chilled on the activity gym while Maggie enjoyed exploring the dog water and my lazy susan. Can you see the dry mustard she has in the picture of the three of them? Brooke agreed to look after Will during the days that I'm teaching next year, which I couldn't be more thrilled about. He's going to be in such good hands!
By the time they left, it was nap time so William caught some zz's while I made the blueberry soup for dinner and Mommy and Grammy chatted. I also got to talk to Neely for the first time in a while. I just wish she had happier news. I love you, lady! You have so many "real" friends who are here for you.
After that we made a quick stop by the florist to pick up some "welcome baby" bouquets. We had not one, but two new friends born at the same hospital. We took a trip up to meet them and congratulate their families. Barrett James and Rhett Archer are the most darling little boys born since my own. They are normal baby size, 7 lbs 8 oz and 6 lbs 10 oz respectively, but they seem so teeny tiny in comparison to William. I never got to see him all fragile like that. Their mommies are doing really well too. Here is me, Laurel and Rhett. Barrett was eating so I didn't get to take a picture with him.
From the hospital, we went over to the church to say a Rosary in front of the Blessed Sacrament. Of course we prayed for a healthy start for these little boys, but also a prayer for Pope Benedict because today is his 60 anniversary of his ordination to the priesthood. Today is also the feast of Sts. Peter and Paul so that made our little chapel the perfect place to pray today. Will did so great letting me get through the whole prayer. I was prepared to stop one decade in if need be, but he held strong.
We're home now and will stay put the rest of the evening I assume, but we will have company here. Brian's college roommate, Cain, has a new job at Valero where Brian works too. He'll have to move closer to San Antonio (he lives in Austin now) but he's staying with us while he finds a place. We've been enjoying his stay for a few days so far.
One last thing that has made today great is that I got to see the sneak peek of the pictures Jared took of Will this weekend. You can check out the sneak peek too on his blog, but when I see the rest I'll post some here. This is my favorite one so far.
I hope you're having a great day too!

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Humongo-Baby

I love my little big butterball of a baby! I definitely had not prepared myself to have such a hefty boy though! When I was born I weighted 5 lbs 7 oz and was 20 inches long. I was a super skinny baby for quite a long time and never had the chubby cheeks or thigh rolls that are so delicious on babies. Brian on the other hand was quite a chunk apparently but our boy beats him.

William weighed 9 lbs 9 oz at birth and was 22 inches long. That's big, but he just keeps getting bigger! At his 2 month appointment we learned that he was 25 inches long which puts him in the 95th percentile and weighed 17 lbs 1 oz placing him in the 99th percentile for weight. I'll be darned if he hasn't gained another pound since then!

They say you can't possibly overfeed a breastfed baby and that he'll go through a stretch where he doesn't gain any weight once he becomes more active, but I do have my doubts. I've built up some muscles holding him all day but it's tough unless he's sitting on my lap or riding in a carrier.

On a side note, don't you just love his shades?

Here are a few pictures from our weekend. We had our good friends Erin and Jared in town. They are expecting their first baby in September. We took the boat out and went swimming at the lake. Jared is a photographer and took a whole bunch of wonderful pictures of Will and of our family, so there will be much more beautiful pictures coming soon.

Monday, June 27, 2011

Menu Plan Monday

Monday: Hazelnut quinoa stuffed peppers, watermelon. Ice cream sundaes with the group after dinner.
Wednesday: Fried egg sandwiches and blueberry soup (not this recipe but similar)
Thursday: Cincinnati style chili over spaghetti, cooked carrots
Friday: Spanish cod on rice, cucumber salad
Saturday: Fried chicken, pinto beans and mixed greens

I felt a little conflicted grocery shopping today because I've been trying to buy more organic and natural foods for my family, but I was also buying the fixings for ice cream sundaes which we're going to have when we host our friends for the Monday night group this evening. I had organic soups, eggs, tons of produce, etc, then Hershey's, Smucker's and Nesquick syrups, sprinkles, and marachino cherries. Is there such a thing as organic sprinkles?

Anyone who has worn a baby in public seems to know what kind of attention that draws. It's a trade off, I have both hands free and know that Will is comfy and safe, but every other person wants to stop and talk about the carrier, how big he is, and what he's doing in there. I love that so many people think I have a cute baby, but I have a limited amount of shopping time before he wants to nurse again and I've got to this this ice cream in the freezer! I try to get out quick with an "aw thanks" and a big smile, but I'm going to have to get craftier if I really want to make haste.

Friday, June 10, 2011

Cake 8- Banana Crumb Cake

Today Willie turned 8 weeks old! I can't believe how quickly time is passing. If it were the middle of the school year I would have been going back to work which is incomprehensible to me. I couldn't leave this little buddy if I wanted to!

In celebration I made Christy Jordan's Banana Crumb Cake. It wasn't the first time I've made it, in fact I think I'm developing a reputation for making and sharing it, but really all my best recipes come from her. The reason I made it today is because we are going out of town on Sunday, Brian to Aruba, Will me and my mom to the Valley. I wanted to bring cake to my grandpa when he gets to meet his great grandson for the first time and this recipe makes two 8x8s or two loaf pans. I made an 8x8 for us and a loaf to bring down to family. The other reason is that Brian's work threw a shower for us this week and sent us home with a huge chocolate cake that we've been eating on since. There's an awful lot of cake around here but I couldn't break my plan so soon.

This is a perfect way to use up too ripe bananas and goes great with coffee as a breakfast cake, but makes a fine dessert too!

Thursday, June 9, 2011

The flood of 2010



A year ago today the Guadalupe river, which we lived across the street from then and now, rose from 4 to 29 feet in a matter of an hour and a half. It was just a few days after Neely and Chad had come to visit and we had tubed the river and swam and boated in Lake Dunlap. Both would be closed for most of the rest of the summer. Our house didn't get any water in it but I was home alone to watch the waters rise closer and closer. There were only a few inches that kept our front door step out of the water. Many people did lose their homes, boat houses, RVs, and one man lost his life.

Living in this town, you often hear people refer to the flood of '98 when just about all of New Braunfels was under water, including the house we live in now. I wonder if people will speak about the flood of 2010 in the same way, or maybe not since it wasn't the worst we've had, and there is always the chance that it will happen again. It seems that no matter where you live there is a chance of some disaster or the other befalling unsuspecting residents. It makes you sensitive to those who have been hit recently, by tornados, wild fires, earthquakes, hurricanes that will land this summer. God promised not to wipe out the earth with a flood again, but when it is your own family and your own home in danger, it probably doesn't feel very different.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

St. William of York, pray for us

Today, June 8th, is the feast day of William's namesake, St. William of York. I had forgotten to celebrate, but thankfully a dear friend reminded me. So today I am thankful for the example of the archbishop of York and will ask him to intercede for my son.



St. William, you never took your eyes off of Christ and his will for you. You devoted yourself to a life of prayer and mortification and you showed forgiveness and love to those who had before been in opposition to your election. Please help us follow your example of perseverence and forgiveness so that we may forgive our transgressors and always persevere in the Lord's will. Amen.




Learn more about him and other Catholic saints here.

Monday, June 6, 2011

Menu Plan Monday

Monday: Crispy eggplant with mushroom marinara over orzo, with sauteed beet greens
Tuesday: the Ham and Tomato Pie I didn't actually end up making last week, blueberry and cantaloupe fruit salad
Wednesday: chicken enchiladas from my new cook book! pinto beans
Thursday: Pork roast, roasted beets, new potatoes

Weekend Recap

Friday morning Will and I joined three other mamas for some play time with their babies. Will mostly watches at this point, but it's nice to know he will have so many friends built-in as our friends' children to start off with. We talked about getting together more regularly which I hope will happen as I thoroughly enjoy their company, but sadly I'm worried my house won't be a good place to play. The littlest babies would be happy here, but we don't have the big baby toys to keep the older ones entertained. They would be terribly disappointed by the toy selection.

Unfortunately a good chunk of our playtime was carved out by annoying phone calls back and forth with Perfect Bridal. I was going to pause the recap here and tell you the story of the dress, but on second thought, I'm just going to put it in a separate post.

Friday evening I had every good intention of going to my first real dance class in 9 years (that's excluding the semester of ballet I took in college for credit)! A local ballet studio offers free dance classes every Friday evening in a different dance style each week and the first was jazz. I was pumped. I told my mom and my friends I was going, I invited another friend who loves and misses dance like I do to go with me (she ended up not being able to). I dug out my jazz shoes and some suitable dance clothes and check and double checked with Brian to be sure he was going to be able to watch Will for an hour and a half. It would be the first time I left him since a botched trip to Kohl's early on. Off I went, only to arrive at the studio and realize I had all the details right except that the first class of the summer is June 10th not June 3rd. Not to waste my freedom, I stopped on the way home and got my eyebrows waxed and a 10 minute chair massage at my nail salon. I'm planning the do-over for this Friday.

Saturday morning brought a trip to the farmer's market here in town. We go every week that we can because it feels like not just food shopping, but a date and entertainment as well. That's how we justify the slightly higher prices on produce. We ended up getting a pretty good selection of fruits and veggies as well as some honey, some grass-fed, hormone free, yada yada beef and the best tortilla chips (fried in coconut oil) I've ever had in my life. It was the trial run for our new stroller, and I was very pleased. I had wanted an alternative to the Bob Revolution that I could take shopping and on neighborhood walks that was less bulky than the Bob. I compared several brands and decided on the Inglesina Swift who's primary advantage ended up being the color. I love this green!

Will was very comfy and the handles are tall enough that even Brian could push it easily.
We went grocery shopping to fill out the rest of the menu at HEB. I was so glad that Brian was with us. Mainly because it's so much easier to shop with an extra hand, but also because he got to see first-hand how often we get stopped to talk about the baby, the sweet comments and the stupid ones.
We spent the rest of the day doing little projects around the house. Will and I were Daddy's assistants in the shop.
Sunday I was late to Mass because I ended up having to feed Will in the parking lot before coming in during the Homily. Apparently Will was cute enough to make up for it, everyone around us fussed over him. We relaxed hard core, and managed to eat every meal outdoors. Brian BBQed a chuck roast with a super yummy espresso rub on it for dinner. Will kept me entertained in the meantime. He learned to roll over from front to back yesterday! Here's the proof.
video
I hope you had a weekend as nice as mine!

Friday, June 3, 2011

Cake 7- Pioneer Woman's Pig Cake

On William's due date I made him a strawberry cake that I was hoping would be a birthday cake. When he turned 1 week old on Good Friday (no one around here was very good at being penitent) I made a Duncan Hines chocolate box cake that happened to be in my cupboard. I had a terrible fever and a one week old so that's about all I could muster up. At that point though I had an idea, or maybe Brian suggested it, why don't we have cake every week for William's birthday, all year. Great idea! 52 cakes!

There's a chance that I'll give up at some point, or miss a couple weeks. There's a good chance that my son will be pretty upset with me when I'm limiting his sweets when he's 5 or 6 and he finds out that there was a cake every Friday for his first year t
hat he didn't even get to eat. But there's a great chance that I will enjoy celebrating my son as he grows this first year, and that my husband will appreciate having cake in the house all the time.

Here's what we've had so far:
1 Week: Duncan Hines chocolate with chocolate can frosting
2 Weeks: Blackberry Coconut Cake - it was supposed to be raspberries but blackberries were on sale. it was a little dry, but looked beautiful under my cake dome.
3 Weeks: Aunt Sue's Orange Juice Cake - by far one of the best cakes I've ever had. I want it again already. Made in a bundt.
4 Weeks: Chocolate Pistachio Cake - I hated it. It was like eating unsweetened cocoa powder- dry and bitter- even after I added a chocolate glaze. My recommendation would be to use less pure dark chocolate even though that's the who
le point. Brian and his cousin loved it though.
5 Weeks: Lemonade Layer Cake - it came from a Junior League cookbook and I can't find the same recipe online. I cheated and made it 13x9 so I could travel with it. It was excellent!
6 Weeks: Store bought white cake with whipped icing for Will'
s Baptism. I don't think it's cheating since I was hosting a brunch for 30 people.
That brings us to Week 7. Happy birthday William!! I just finished making Pioneer Woman's Pig Cake. It is so sweet and moist and almost refreshing. I love the whipped topping. Her's is beautiful, be sure to click over and check out the pictures. Here's mine.


Thursday, June 2, 2011

Will this morning

video
Is he just the cutest baby you've ever seen (except yours of course)? I love having a little boy to play with! There was more smiling and batting of the giraffe than I could capture on video, but you get the idea. He'll be 7 weeks old tomorrow.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Menu Plan Monday

I reserve the right to call it that no matter what day I post it.

Monday: Santa Fe Soup for our Monday night group. Watermelon, Candy Cookie Cups. We hosted this week. Everyone liked the soup a lot and it made a nice big pot of it, so I figured I share the recipe in case anyone else needs something easy and inexpensive to feed a crowd.
originally published in Food for Thought by the Junior League of Birmingham, AL

2 lbs ground beef (or turkey) browned with an onion.
Add in 2 packets of taco seasoning and 2 packets of ranch dressing mix
Here come the cans! Dump in, without draining:
a can of black beans
a can of pinto beans
a can of kidney beans
a can of Rotel style tomatoes with chiles
a can of tomato wedges. (that's what the recipe says but I've never seen a can of tomato wedges so I just used a can of diced tomatoes without chiles)
2 cans of white corn (I used mixed white and yellow because it was on sale for $.46, it was prettier that way)
simmer for 2 hours. Add a couple cups of water as it gets thicker.
Serve with sour cream, shredded cheese, green onions, avacado, tortilla chips or any combination thereof

Tuesday: Fried fresh trout (Brian went fishing this weekend), cole slaw, steamed baby yellow squash

Wednesday: Pasta with peas, panzanella salad (we usually do vegetarian on Fridays, or sometimes Mondays, but the ingredients I need to use up will work better to do it Wednesday this week)

Thursday: Basil burgers, grilled corn on the cob, sweet potato chips

Friday we're heading in to Sugar Land to see my family and introduce Will to some friends there!



Monday, April 11, 2011

It's OK

It's ok to clean under your finger nails with a potato scrubber. Or an earring post. Whatever.

It's ok to tell your dog 10 times in a row to stop eating the ashes out of the bbq pit but to not stand up and empty them out so he doesn't keep doing it.

It's ok to feel just a little sad that you're having a boy rather than a girl every time you see adorable hairbows for sale. (as long as you're thrilled about it the rest of the time)

It's ok to have an enormous stockpile of greeting cards that you bought with the best of intentions even though they may never get sent, at least to their originally intended recipients.

It's ok to try to slip in coupons that you know are expired or two for the same product just to see if the store will take them. It's not stealing. Or maybe it is, I've been feeling a little guilty for this lately.

It's ok to spend whole days watching marathons of House, or Law and Order SVU, or Top Chef, or Little Miss Perfect.

It's ok to make up or embellish pregnancy aches and pains so your husband will keep massaging.

It's ok to throw away perfectly good lightbulbs because you just can't store that many of them. How did we get that many lightbulbs anyway?

It's ok to take the free eye exam at WalMart just to hear them say your vision is perfect, again.

It's ok to categorically like all songs with a whistling part in them and dislike all songs that include the lyrics "for you and for me" or refer to one's generation.

And just for good measure, this song is ok too!

Menu Plan Monday

Shopping and cooking are on my no-can-do list of bed rest restrictions (along with travel, sex and cleaning), which came as bummers since those are kind of the highlights of my day! So for the last few weeks I've had to plan meals that are quick and easy for Brian to make when he gets home from work, with a little help from me because I'm not that good at following instructions. Most of the meals I've picked are coming from the Simple and Delicious cookbook put out by Taste of Home. I love how they organize the meals and time each of the recipes. None of them are over 30 minutes. Sides are based almost solely on what we found at the farmers' market on Saturday. So here's what we're having (it's running Saturday to Friday even though I'm posting on Monday):

Saturday: Uglies, roasted broccoli greens, and mashed potatoes.
Did you know you could use the broccoli leaves? I didn't until a nice farmer sold us some. They were delicious! Less bitter than collards, and really simple to make with this roasting recipe. Different than the usual sauteeing I do with pretty much all other greens.
The filling for the uglies would have been better divided among 10 biscuits rather than 8. There was some left after I stuffed as much as I could into the biscuit cups that I had to eat with a spoon. Oh, the sacrifice!

Sunday: Chicken Tikka Masala (sort of), taboule from the box, naan, and sliced radishes and vinegar. The radishes were Easter egg radishes, a mix of pink, red, purple, white and yellow. So pretty!
The reason I say sort of about the Tikka Masala is that we bought a premade batch of it from a guy at the farmers market that was intended to be a dip, but I used it as a marinade then followed these instructions for sesame chicken to bake it and serve over rice.

Monday: Tuna Burgers with mustard greens and chips

Tuesday: Spaghetti and meatballs, zucchini boats
I already made the meatballs with what was left of the ground beef after the uglies on Saturday

Wednesday: beer marinated Chicken tacos with super spicy Brianmade salsa to hurry Will along if he's not here yet, and canned beans

Friday: Pine Nut Crusted Red Snapper, spinach and rice

Come on, baby!

This certainly hasn't been a pregnancy blog, but inspired by Allie's weekly postings, I thought I might should do one of my own before it's over. For the last few weeks I've been thinking everything I do is the last time I'm going to do it before the baby gets here. Saturday I went to the Farmer's Market, again thinking it's the last time. Yesterday was the third week in a row I thought I would be going to Mass for the last time before baby gets here. Let's hope I was right and that this is the last Monday before baby gets here. The good news though is that this means so far my doctor has decided baby and I are healthy enough to carry on in pregnancy rather than inducing. That was a real possibility because of high blood pressure, but as of now he says that I am fine to continue to 41 weeks (yikes!) as long as nothing changes. Tomorrow is my e.d.d. and I know only 5% of babies are actually born on their due dates, but lets offer a prayer that this little boy is!

Pregnancy Highlights:

How Far Along: 40 weeks

Total Weight Gain/Loss: +25 lbs

Is your nursery done? basically. I need to hang his quilt and post the decal of his name on the wall. Also my parents ordered us a glider that hasn't come yet. So actually I guess the nursery isn't done, but we don't really plan on having him in there much anyway, at least at first.

What is your favorite piece of baby gear that you've purchased? I'm really excited to try out the Baby K'Tan carrier I got us.

Which stroller did you buy? My parents gave us a Bob Revolution jogging stroller. I'd also like to pick up a smaller umbrella stroller for shopping trips, etc. I couldn't believe there wasn't a single stroller at the consignment store when I went but I have my eyes peeled.

How many inches around is that bump? I don't know in terms of inches, but out of curiousity I played the toilet paper game alone at home just to see. I insisted that we not play it at either of my showers because honestly how fun is measuring your body under the scrutiny of all your family and friends under any circumstances? But fyi, it took 11 squares of toilet paper to wrap around my belly at the belly button. Incidentally, that is still about half a square too short to wrap around my hips at the widest point. Even 9 months pregnant, I'm pear shaped!

Are you getting nervous? Yes, a little. I was confident when we were planning a home birth with a midwife that I knew would be calm and comfortable. Knowing now that I'll be giving birth in the hospital I'm worried about the chance for interventions I don't want and just that the environment is going to be tense and disruptive. I'm not nervous that anything is actually going to go wrong, surprisingly. I have faith that we'll both come through healthy and strong on the other side.

Have you dropped yet? yes, that boy is fully snuggled into my pelvis.

Lost your plug? I think that's what it was...

Are you still working/how long will you work? No, I've been on bed rest for the last few weeks. About 20 hours a day are spent laying on my left side.

How do you feel in general? bored, achy, and oh so ready to hold my baby in my arms

What are you getting the most excited about? I can't wait for us to be a family of 3!

Saturday, April 2, 2011

The Accent Vlog

I vlogged!! I'm hit or miss, I get that. I miss you guys, really, I do! But there are no long apologies or best laid plans to return to blogging this time. I'd love to update you, especially since the baby is coming any day now, but right now I am just dropping in to share this vlog about accents. You should think about doing it too! If you want to follow along or do the Accent Vlog yourself, here are the words/questions: Aunt, Route, Wash, Oil, Theater, Iron, Salmon, Caramel, Fire, Water, Sure, Data, Ruin, Crayon, Toilet, New Orleans, Pecan, Both, Again, Probably, Spitting image, Alabama, Lawyer, Coupon, Mayonnaise, Syrup, Pajamas, Caught, Coffee, Daughter. What is it called when you throw toilet paper on a house? What is the bug that when you touch it, it curls into a ball? What is the bubbly carbonated drink called? What do you call gym shoes? What do you say to address a group of people? What do you call the kind of spider that has an oval-shaped body and extremely long legs? What do you call your grandparents? What do you call the wheeled contraption in which you carry groceries at the supermarket? What do you call it when rain falls while the sun is shining? What is the thing you change the TV channel with?


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