Jan 30, 2015

Weekly Links

Happy Friday. No Charlie yet, but that might be changing soon! Here are a few links from this week:

This makes me want to grow more things just to hoard in my basement. Maybe my potatoes will do better this year.

Favorite food, favorite verse, a well written blog post.

A neat way to pick out wine. Although my favorite tip is the last one: regular consumption.

Emily Henderson is not only one of my favorite designers, but also a favorite blogger. Besides her sparkling personality, she does a great job of educating readers on why/how to make good design choices. Her latest masterpiece is on sofas. Yes, I inherited my statement couch, but still... couches are important. Don't mess it up!

Drunken Oreos? Forget the Oreo part, can we just eat boozey pudding?

Jan 29, 2015

40 weeks

Yesterday was Charlie's due date. We are officially past the 40 week mark. I don't think I've shared many or any of these monthly pictures yet, so I thought since I have the time, I'd go ahead and share this project. 

Many bloggers and mothers take weekly or monthly pictures to track their progress of their bumps. Heck, I've seen some super creative daily videos too. So when I found out I was pregnant I started thinking about how I'd like to capture this time. Another blogger I follow took pictures in the baby's room from the start as a way to track not only the bump but also the space. I thought this was a great idea and decided to do the same. So here goes: 

The day I found out. 

All photos were taken with my iPhone and edited with the A Beautiful Mess app.  I plan to do something similar for Charlie, assuming he is ever born, in the brown rocking chair once a month. I'll probably use the Beautiful Mess baby add on package to signify the month. I like this look better than the stickers and I certainly don't have any Photoshop prowess to go ala Young House Love. 

Jan 23, 2015

Waiting on Charlie

I am 39 weeks. Full term. About this time last week I started getting really impatient and ready for this whole  pregnancy thing to be over with. Bryan had finished his last road trip for work and that meant it was officially okay for Charlie to arrive... which meant that I thought he should just go ahead and arrive already. Cue the frustration when he didn't agree with me.

Besides his insistence on not arriving early the most frustrating thing is the little aches and pains. I find myself questioning every little feeling or movement wondering if it is a contraction. I can not tell you the number of times I've googled some variation of "what do contractions feel like."  Sigh... my doctor says any day now. Even saying she'd be surprised if I lasted until my next appointment (Tuesday), which only heightens my anticipation.

We've busied ourselves with little Charlie chores: washing all his clothes and blankets, snipping tags of toys and paraphernalia, installing the car seat, installing batteries in the swing and bouncy seat, etc. There is literally nothing else to do. I moved on to other household chores. Making sure we have plenty of toilet paper and cleaning supplies, filling up olive oil and dish washing dispensers, replacing batteries on my kitchen timer that was dying, etc. The house is clean and clutter free. We. Are. Ready.

Bryan and I have had multiple discussions on how to spend our free time while we wait for Charlie  as we now have nothing else to do. Should we go out or should we stay in and enjoy the quiet?  So far we've been alternating between the two. Going out one night, staying in the next. I'm afraid to meal plan or buy groceries because then I would for sure go into labor and all the food would spoil. Which I was tempted to do just so that I might actually go into labor. But that's not very prudent, so I'm buying on an every other day basis.

I'm sure in a couple of weeks (maybe even days, I hope) I will look back at this time of waiting and laugh at how impatient I was/am. But for the moment, it's tough. It's tough to know that he can come at any time, but isn't. I wake up every morning wondering if this date is the day that I'll celebrate for the rest of my life or if it will be just another day. It's tough being surrounded by all the good work we've put into this little boy, but so far don't have anything to show for it other than a ginormous belly and my crappy attitude.

I try to remind myself of the song I was taught as a child, "this is the day that the Lord has made. I will rejoice and be glad in it." Charlie or no Charlie I'm going to try to make the most of each day.

Weekly Links

We're waiting on Charlie's arrival over here, growing more and more impatient by the day. Here are a few links I found amusing this week:

I have always loved Isaac Mizrahi. I was surprised by his subdued, but still lovely apartment.

Congrats to our friend, Taylor, for being featured in this awesome video by Choose 901.

Bookmarked recipes:
Brussels Sprouts with Sausage and Cumin
Crockpot Caramelized Pork Ramen Noodle Soup with Curry Roasted Acorn Squash - a bit more complicated than your average crockpot meal, but it looks like it could be worth it.

Bryan and I were talking about this the other day: Why Wes Anderson hasn't won an Oscar

Loving music by Benjamin Booker:

Hope you have a great weekend!

Jan 19, 2015


I didn't anticipate having a gardening related post for a few more months, but I actually have garden related news this Monday morning!

For Christmas Bryan bought me a greenhouse from a local garden supply shop. It's not super fancy, just a pipe and plastic covering get up, but I'm pretty pleased with it! And he's pleased that I won't be starting seeds inside anymore! Win/win!

Saturday Bryan and his brother, Brett, set it up for me in the backyard.

So far I don't have much to put in it. My limes, which are seriously struggling, and a few herbs I had moved inside for the winter. What I'm really looking forward to utilizing this space for is starting seeds.  I received my seeds in the mail last week. This year's garden will have more tomatoes and peppers than ever before and they always do well when I start from seed.

Do you have a greenhouse? How do you utilize it?

Jan 9, 2015

Friday Thoughts

I don't really have a post for today, but I thought instead I'd share some random thoughts.

We took our Christmas tree to the curb last Saturday. Yesterday I noticed that it had been turned 90 degrees on the curb since the other day. (I noticed this because the top was sticking out in our drive way a bit and I might have hit it with my tires. Whoops.) This morning it is on the other side of the street. How? Why?

Newborn diapers are the tiniest and cutest thing in the world.

I crave ice cream when it's cold outside. Yesterday when it didn't go above freezing all day, I drove myself over to Sonic for a blast.

AC/DC is very effective background music for writing thank you notes.

I ordered seeds for this years garden yesterday! I will be trying several new tomato and pepper varieties. As well as a new cucumber and potato.

Bryan has been out of town this week and the animals are driving me insane. Pets need fathers too.

I hope ya'll have a great weekend. We have to attend an all day "Pregnancy to Parenthood" class at our local hospital. Prayers are appreciated.

Jan 6, 2015

Cooking 2014

I thought I'd do a cooking recap for 2014 today. As I have these blog post ideas I mark it on my calendar for the day of the post. This morning over coffee and pound cake I flipped through my meal journal. Yes, a la Dinner A Love Story. 

It's an interesting exercise to go back and see how you've cooked for an extended period  of time. 

I found we ate out a lot this year. Second Line, Chiwawa, and Molly's seem to be the most frequently visited. All three are within walking distance of our house so that's no surprise. 

When I did cook we were very veggie heavy. I've spent the last two years trying to decrease our meat consumption and the CSA certainly helped in this area as well. 

I was not as adventurous as I'd like this past year. Being pregnant half the year and heavy travel the first half of the year really put a damper on my home cooking. 

Favorite recipes were bolognese in the colder months, fresh tomato sauce during the summer, tomato pie with sausage, and sausage  and potato soup. 

Looking forward I'd like to be more adventurous and consistent in my cooking, but with a baby due any day now I'm not going to make any promises. 

How did you cook this year? How often is too often to eat out?

Jan 5, 2015

The 2014 Book Post: The books I read and some I didn't

The last couple of years I've made reading more of a priority and I am so glad I have. Reading is so enriching. According to Goodreads I read 75 books last year. Some of them were cookbooks, which I wouldn't really count as "reading" so much as flipping through and dreaming. But whatevs. I still like to mark them as read so that Goodreads can recommend other cookbooks I might like.

Here's my favorite books I read in 2014:

Favorite Fiction: The Rosie Project  by Graeme Simsion for a lighter reader; The Goldfinch by Donna Tratt for a weightier read.
Favorite Non-Fiction:  Great With Child by Beth Ann Fennelly; This is a Story of a Happy Marriage by Ann Patchett
Honorable Mentions:
Bringing Up Bebe by Pamela Druckerman
84, Charing Cross Road by Helene Hanff
Operating Instructions by Anne Lamott
Respect Yourself by Robert Gordon

To see more of what I read in 2014 click here.

And now for the books I haven't read...

NPR's Best Books of 2014
Huffington Post's Best Books of 2014
The New York Time's Notable Books of 2014

Nothing makes me feel worse about myself than looking at these lists and realizing that I haven't read a one of them. What have I been doing?! Do I live under a rock? Apparently I just operate a year behind these writers/readers. I've come to accept this as my lot in life.

My to-read list overfloweth! I spent some time the other day looking up books from my "to-read" list on Overdrive and marking what's available on my Overdrive "wish list." I'm holding out hope that once Charlie is born I will still find time to read. At this point I have over 30 ebook options to keep me occupied between naps and feedings.

What did you read and love this year?

Jan 2, 2015

2015 Goals

New year, new goals! If you are just starting to follow along, I'm a goal oriented person. Some years I'll do seasonal goals and some years I just go for the whole year.  With Charlie arriving soon I tried not to overwhelm myself as I'm sure learning to take care of a wee one will be the biggest undertaking yet. But I can't let a year go by without a few goals, so here we go:

- A healthy baby. Duh.

- Experiment with making cheese. I've seen lots of easy looking recipes for ricotta and mozzarella. I think I'll give it a go this year.

- Bake more. I'm not a baker, but I'd love to try to break out of my flour-phobic comfort zone. I'm even making a pound cake today! (Notice, lose weight or eat healthy are not on this list.)

- Exercise regularly (at least 2-3 times a week). This will have to happen after Charlie for obvious reasons. During most of this pregnancy I was taking a weekly pre-natal yoga class that I absolutely loved. After Charlie I intend to take a post-natal yoga class and then ease into a weekly yoga class at the same studio. I'd also like to take up my walk/run routine again once the weather is nice and I'm given the okay. Getting some fresh air will be key, I think, to avoid mommy burn out.

- Finish my preservation class. I started this months ago, but haven't been able to devote any time to it the last two months. I'd also like to do more preservation next spring/summer, but I'm not willing to write down any hard goals in this area at this time. I'm wary of how much energy I'll have to devote to the garden this year.

- Read the Bible in a year. Bryan and I are doing this together with our Sunday School class. You can follow along here if you'd like to do it too.

So that's the plan. What are your goals? Are these realistic for a first time mom?