Friday, January 25, 2013

7 Quick Takes

I am writing this post at 2:15 PM on Friday, which makes me the blogger equivalent of this kid -->

wait up!
 Oh well, better late than never... right?

1. Pinterest : I used to devote endless hours to looking up recipes, fashion ideas, home decor concepts, organizational tips, etc. I took a break for several months (no, I did not miss it actually) but have returned recently. I only allow myself to go when I have something specific in mind, however, and that seems to help and even be useful. 

2. Recipes : I have recently noticed that the ratio of Good Chicken Breast Recipes to Good Ground Beef Recipes is somewhere in the neighborhood of 500,345 : 1 . Seriously, I am one of the biggest fan of Italian/American food out there and would be perfectly happy eating Spaghetti or Baked Ziti practically every day of the week, but my husband does not happen to share my obsession and while it was not explicitly stated in our vows, I am pretty sure that as his wife I have to consider his palate and provide some variety. So I have been trying to hunt down good meals and recipe ideas that incorporate ground beef. I have a feeling that the people over at All Recipes are enjoying themselves immensely at my search attempts. At any rate I have managed to find a handful to try and hope they manage to please. Updates to follow (you can't wait, can you?).

3. Monday Blog : Encouraged by my recent dabbling in the kitchen I have thought of a blog series that I hope to begin soon. If all goes well I will be doing a brief post on Mondays, the topic of which would be a recipe that I would have tried out within the past week. I am no Rachel Ray or {insert name of other famous chef} so it is quite possible that the majority of my posts will refer to recent failures rather than successes. I will not be limiting myself to any particular type of cuisine or dish so it could be an appetizer one week, main dish the next, etc. The only rule is that it has to be something I have not tried before. Feel free to join in if you like the idea. As always, feedback is appreciated!

4. Baby : I do not care what all of the books or websites say - Leo likes to move and lack of room is not holding him back one bit! I had a dream last night where I accidentally gave birth to him (legs first no less!) and finally got to hold him. He was a cute little guy but when he opened up his mouth he had a mouthful of teeth! I told my doctor about it today and while he gave me a polite little chuckle he did tell me that some babies are indeed born with teeth! They are referred to as "milk teeth" (every breastfeeding mother in the world just winced) and fall out within the first few weeks. Here's hoping Kiddo has as many teeth as this guy -->

but not that nose

5. Ants : I have no idea how they are getting into our apartment but the number of ants killed within our home over the past week is slightly ridiculous. They seem to prefer our two bathrooms rather than our kitchen counters (thank God!) and travel alone rather than congregating but there is something unspeakably upsetting about thinking there is a spec of lint on the floor then realizing that it is indeed alive and moving! Partly because I hate wasting toilet paper on the little blighters and partly because I cannot stand the idea of having them within my grasp, my method of disposing of them has involved the use of our handheld vacuum. It provides me with a fantastic sense of self-satisfaction when I see them get sucked up into the oblivion of dust and grime. That being said, I finally reached a high enough level of frustration this week that I went ahead and purchased a pack of 12 ant traps. I don't know how it works and I don't want to. All I want is for bathroom floor to stop moving!

6. WIC : Despite knowing about Leo's existence since June, my work schedule did not allow me to sign up for WIC until this week. It took some extra planning and thought when I wrote out our grocery list and went shopping but it was wonderful to see a smaller bill at the end of it all. One day I will figure out how to clip coupons and be a smarter shopper but for now I am just happy to have saved a few dollars.

7. J-O-B : This upcoming Wednesday will mark my last day working as a crisis pregnancy counselor, a position I have held for the past 2 1/2 years. It is especially on my mind today as hundreds of thousands gather today in D.C. and march in remembrance of the countless lives lost since Roe vs. Wade and for change. For a beautifully written and unique perspective on the subject I suggest reading Jen's article over at Life Site News. Good stuff! 

Speaking of which, I hope you will take the time to go visit Jen , Ana , and all the other wonderful 7-Quick-Takers! 

~ Happy Friday ~

Sunday, January 20, 2013

What I Wore Sunday (Vol. 4)

Well, I have been absent for a few weeks now from the What I Wore Sunday scene and feel I must explain. You see, I have a very small rotation of maternity shirts that still fit and the number of Sunday-suitable shirts is smaller still. I think the total is something in the ballpark of two or three shirts. Scarves help out on occasion and God knows I have plenty of those (seriously, no matter how many times I cull my closet their number seems to grow!). Even with the assistance of scarves and accessories, however, I feel like all that I would be doing is duplicating previous posts. I suppose the pictures would be different - does lighting and environment count for a change in WIWS? Anyways, all this rambling is to say that a friend's wedding a few weeks ago required me to go on a fierce shopping hunt so that I could actually attend and not be asked to leave. My poor husband was an absolute trooper and came along for the ride and without his encouragement and sense of humor I think I would have just stayed home or lurked in the vestibule of the Church. So, without further ado.......
What mess on the floor???

Favorite Earrings

Details -->

Dress : Burlington Coat Factory (not maternity - just one very convenient waist and lots of stretchy material!)
Tights : Macy's
Shoes : Target (No, I do not own any other dressy black flats)
Earrings : Amazon (missing matching necklace due to boat-neck style dress)
Eyeliner : Meijer (I know this really doesn't count but I finally bought some after being without any for a few weeks and it makes me SOOOOOOO happy!!!)

If you are looking for a bit more class and creativity please head on over and check out all the participants at Fine Linen and Purple

Friday, January 18, 2013

7 Quick Takes

Before I get started, I should probably admit that in order to get this posted on Friday and be able to link up with the likes of Jen, Ana, Grace, and all the other wonderful 7 Quick Takers I have to type it up well before Friday. I blame it on what I have heard others refer to as "pregnancy brain." It is why I sometimes put the cereal in the refrigerator and the milk in the cabinets or why I put a dirty dish towel in the trash can today instead of the laundry hamper. I stared at the trash can for a solid 30 seconds in complete confusion before I realized I had made a mistake. So if any of the following topics strike you as bizarre, disjointed, or unclear just remember that these days I seem to be channeling a 53 year-old drunk named Edgar. Speaking of pregnancy.....

1. Baby Shower : This past weekend we had a whirlwind trip to Ben's hometown and had our second Baby Shower. Despite only being there for about two days we grabbed some wonderful time with family and were overwhelmed by the outpouring of generosity from both friends and family. Poor Kiddo is going to grow up under the illusion that we are loaded - how else could we have so much awesome stuff for him?! Speaking of being spoiled...

2. Pregnancy : Until quite recently my height had been a real boon in pregnancy. Between that and my many cardigans and scarves I had grown accustomed to people either not knowing that I was pregnant or thinking I was not nearly as far along as I was. Well, my friends, not height, scarves, or cardigans can help me now! I will begin my 36th week of pregnancy this Sunday and I look every day of it! Indeed I have even had people ask me if I am further along than that! On the one hand, this is good for my ego. On the other hand, it is quite an adjustment and not one that my splendid emotions/moods were ready for. Speaking of moods and emotions....

3. Panic : More and more often these days I get hit by moments of panic. Don't get me wrong, I don't forget that I am pregnant. It's just that sometimes I forget that the time is quickly approaching when I will NOT be pregnant! It is exciting, thrilling, anxiety-producing, and bittersweet all at once. I cannot wait to hold our little boy in my arms and be able to trace the outline of his cheek and kiss his forehead and sing to him and read to him and just be a MOM! At the same time, no amount of nieces or nephews or babysitting really prepares you for the reality of having your own child. I mean, he is going to wake up in the middle of the night and I might not know why! Is he wet? Is he hungry? Is he in pain? Is he angry about Obama's executive orders?! Well, I don't know. And I have no doubt that I will get it wrong. Crap. And, lest we forget, the time is quickly approaching when life will go from being "Ben and me" to "Ben, Leo, and me." This is the bittersweet part. Do I regret being open to life? Not for a millisecond! But I would be lying if I said that I don't feel some sadness at the idea of losing life as it is now, the life that my husband and I have built together over the past several months. Speaking of my husband.....

4. My husband : He is kind of amazing. I mention him from time to time but never give him enough credit. This is a man who offers foot and back massages every night without complaint, who willingly takes out the trash and does the dishes, who loves to cook (and cooks betters than me, darn it!), who indulges my ludicrous sense of humor and bizarre taste in movies/TV shows, and I could go on and on. I cannot wait to see him be a father and I know that he will be an absolute hero to our children. He is also the type of man who needs at least a few daughters to wrap him around their tiny fingers so even while we eagerly await the arrival of our little guy I cannot help but smile when I think of us having a little girl someday. Hopefully God will comply but then again, the world could definitely use the type of men that my husband would raise :) One of the things that I love about Ben is his patience. It basically flows through his veins and thank God, because that is the only way that we could be married in the first place! A month or so ago Ben's parents gave us a beautiful rocker for the baby. We were told by Babies R Us that the thing would come practically assembled. They lied. So it was that for several hours poor Ben had to build the thing from the ground up, dealing with mislabeled parts and bits that didn't even fit together properly. Did he give up? No. Below is the proof of his awesomeness -->


Speaking of Before and After (sick of that transition yet? Me too!)......

5.  Reading : Ben and I have now finished reading six books aloud to each other. We aren't quite sure what to read next but for the sake of our evenings I hope we figure it out soon. I have grown far too accustomed to the pastime!

6. Meal Planning : I know you must feel awfully lost without the "Speaking of..." transition but try and hang on. Since transitioning from full-time to part-time I have been able to do something that I merely dreamed of before (OK, more in a nightmare-like fashion but still.....). I now sit down and write out the next 5 - 7 days of meals. This enables me to - WAIT FOR IT - make up a REASONABLE grocery list that does NOT necessitate approximately eighty additional trips over the course of a given week! While I do not so much enjoy the sitting and planning, I do love waking up in the morning and knowing what to thaw and what I will be preparing on that given day. I imagine that this will go straight out the window the second that I go into labor, but in the meantime it is just great! 

7. Baking/Cooking : Meal planning has also allowed me to sink back into the habit of cooking and on two occasions this week I actually went a step further and baked! When I was in high school cooking and baking was something I had passion for and indulged in almost every day. Now I am not saying that I am back to that point and to be honest I don't think it's reasonable for me to expect that I will get there in the near future, if ever. But there is something deeply satisfying and pleasant to sit down for dinner and know that the wonderful foods and aromas that are floating through the apartment are a result of my handiwork and not a "Ready to Bake" loaf of bread and frozen meal from Meijer. 

~ Happy Friday ~

Friday, January 4, 2013


I am sorry to say that I will be passing on the "7 Quick Takes" today as grocery shopping, cleaning, organizing, and cooking are doing an excellent job of filling all of my free time. I find this to be ridiculous, considering that Kiddo is still in-utero but there it is. That being said, I simply had to share what I overheard at my doctor's office today. I am fairly sure it qualifies as the Most Awkward Thank You of all time. I leave the judging of that, however, in your capable hands. Enjoy.....

Setting : Doctors Office - Check Out Counter
Things to Know : Patient is newly pregnant after (presumably) a difficult time conceiving; Doctor is African-American.
Characters :
   P -> Patient
   PH -> Patient's Husband
   D -> Doctor
   N -> Nurses

P : "I picked up the phone and started calling and texting everyone! I even told the doctor at the hospital 'Doctor Cavallo fixed me and got me pregnant! He got me pregnant!'.
PH : "We may stop being so happy if [the baby] comes out a darkie though."
P : "I'm sure you get texts from women all of the time."
PH : "Bet your wife ain't too happy about that!"
D : *laughing* "It's all business."
PH : "Sure" *wink*
N : *open-mouthed and utterly shocked by conversation*

Clearly the most bizarre component of this interaction was the patient's husband. I don't think I have ever heard an actual person use the term "darkie" outside of TV/film before. Props to Dr. C for keeping it light and jovial and congrats to the happy couple. Hopefully their next visit will be a little more tame.

Happy Friday!