Thursday, September 27, 2012

Pregnancy #2: 33 weeks

33 weeks
'Scuse the pajamas--I'm feeling pretty blah, and we're just lounging around today, so there ya go.
And I didn't take a 33 week photo with Lizzy apparently, so nothing to compare it to this week!

How far along: 33 weeks.

Size of baby: A durian fruit (?!) (The Bump) or a pineapple (Baby Center).  In other words, about 17-18 inches and 4-5 pounds.

Weight Gain:No change this week, so a total gain of 17-18 pounds.

Symptoms: Heartburn again, even with Zantac. I had another weird thing with my vision happen last night, but none of the other symptoms that went with it last week. I just felt a little off, like I might pass out. Once I laid down on the couch for about a half an hour and drank some apple juice, I was fine and everything went back to normal. We took my blood pressure, and it was 121/60, so I'm not too worried...well, other than I'm a little paranoid that I have HELLP syndrome because my pregnancy book and Dr. Google list continuous heartburn, fatigue, headaches, blurry vision, and tingling in extremities as symptoms, and I've had all of those at one point or another this pregnancy. But I'm trying to remind myself that all of those symptoms could easily be 100 other things, and that I haven't had issues with any of the other things usually associated with HELLP like high blood pressure, protein in urine, swelling, vomiting, etc. Plus, I just had blood work done last week and he said everything looked perfect there as well. But sometimes I can tend to be a bit of a hypochondriac, and latch on to one particular disease or thing that I've heard about it, and totally convince myself that I have it. My mom is the same way :)

So anyway, I'm trying to decide whether or not I need to call in and report the weird vision episode to my OB, since everything is fine now (and was almost as soon as I ate/drank something), or whether I can just wait to talk to my OB next week.

Exercise: Nope. 

Clothes: Yep, maternity.

Cravings/Aversions:Nothing in particular.

Movement: Yep :)

Worries: Just what's mentioned above!

Milestones: She is now keeping her eyes open while awake, and also practicing coordinating sucking and swallowing.

What's Different This Time: Nothing particular!

Best moment of the week: Having a CLEAN KITCHEN and coffee made when I got up on Monday morning! Thank you Justin!

Monday, September 24, 2012

Catching up.

We made some serious progress in deep cleaning the house this weekend, which is awesome and amazing, because the next FOUR Saturdays are booked up...which is crazy and surreal. We still have a huge amount to do pre-baby, but getting a good check of the general deep-cleaning out of the way is a huge relief. And it's kind of nice that I could actually invite people over to our house again--it really was so bad, that it was out of the question!

I have a dermatologist appointment this morning, I think to check on how the place where I had stitches on my stomach is holding up, and also to monitor a mole. Even though I don't think it's going to be a big deal, I have a hard time not getting super anxious any time I have a dermatologist appointment. I freaked most of the night last night about the appointment.

I did some housekeeping to the blog over the weekend--I cleaned up the sidebar a bit, and also revamped the pages in the header. Now, you can find all baby and infant related posts itemized in one central location, and also a master list of all book reviews. I'm also trying something new and opening up a limited number of sidebar ads via Passionfruit-- check it out if you're so inclined (and I promise you won't hear much more from me on the subject).

We went to a wedding over the weekend for a young couple that used to help with childcare for Mom's Group. Justin and I were cracking up because both the father/daughter dance and the mother/son dance were the exact same songs we used for our wedding. I don't think I've heard them at ANY wedding since then, so it was pretty funny to hear both in one wedding. We kept joking that we guessed we were supposed to be remembering our wedding that day ;)

I get to start Beth Moore's study of James with some of the ladies from Mom's Group this week, and I am so excited. SO. EXCITED. I have absolutely zero doubt that it'll be really good for me to really dig in to the Word in these last few weeks before having a baby...because I don't know about anyone else, but it is so easy for me to fall out of the habit of daily quiet time, and when I do, nothing good comes of it. Also? Totally crazy to think that I most likely won't finish the study with the group because I'll be off having a baby.

Last night, I had a conversation with Lizzy about dinner that went like this:
Me: Lizzy, would you like a cheeseburger for dinner?
Lizzy: No mom!! I want a hang-a-burger with cheese, please.

If I would have told her that a hang-a-burger with cheese is the same thing as a cheeseburger, it would have resulted in a 37 minute tantrum. Sometimes, it's just easier to call it a hang-a-burger with cheese.
I'm in a book slump. I haven't picked up a book that I was really, really excited about reading in too long. This is compounded by the fact that what I read before bed has recently been directly influencing some absolutely crazy pregnancy dreams, so I'm trying to limit myself to happy, inspirational fluff. But yeah...not excited about anything I've read lately. Any suggestions?

Friday, September 21, 2012

Pregnancy #2: 32 Weeks

Sorry guys...this mirror shot from yesterday is the best we're gonna get this week. I hope to do a lot of cleaning today, and I figured there wasn't any sense in taking a shower and getting all cute only to spend the whole day cleaning! And compared to 32 weeks with Lizzy:


How far along: 32 weeks.

Size of baby: A squash (The Bump) or a large jicama (Baby Center).  In other words, about 15.2-16.7 inches inches and 2.5-3.8 pounds.

Weight Gain: +18ish pounds total, from pre-pregnancy weight, which means another 2 pound gain this week. Can I be honest here? This bums me out a little because I was hoping to keep the total weight gain to 20 pounds this pregnancy...which is probably not going to happen at this point with 8ish weeks left. I think I may have been able to have done it if I were still able to exercise...not being supposed to exercise is really frustrating to me for a number of different reasons. But, I'm trying to remind myself that at this same point in pregnancy with Lizzy, I'd already gained 28 pounds. So, I suppose a 10 pound difference is nothing to completely discount either.

Symptoms: Heartburn again. Also, once this week while I was out grocery shopping, I suddenly lost my peripheral vision and got all sweaty and clammy. My vision used to get wonky like that before I had migraines, but I only had a little headache afterwards, so I'm not sure it was that. My OB said that he's not too worried at this point because my blood pressure is good, all my blood counts are good, etc. Could have been low blood sugar, could have been some sort of vascular response, could have been a number of things, and as long as it's not happening regularly, he's not too concerned. But again, I'm supposed to be taking it easy.

Exercise: Nope. And I'm really trying to be good about striking a balance between doing things and resting. Seriously, our house is a dis-as-ter. And I have a really hard time relaxing until at least the visual clutter is taken care of. Plus, there may be a bit of nesting going on. So, I've been trying to clean for 30 minutes, sit down and rest for 30 minutes. It drives me batty, and I'm kinda looking forward to the 36 or 37 week point where I'm given the green light to do whatever I want again since contractions won't be a worry.

Clothes: Yep, maternity.

Cravings/Aversions: This week, I've wanted sweets. Lots of sweets.

Movement: Yep :)

Worries: I'm hoping to get a TON done from our "To Do Before Baby #2" list this weekend. Almost every weekend in October is booked, so I feel like this is kind of our last hurrah for some of that stuff.

Milestones: She should be moving into the head-down position. We'll see in two weeks at our final ultrasound if that's the case. We'll also get to see if she has hair--at this point, Lizzy had a total mohawk that we could see during the ultrasound!

What's Different This Time: I already talked about it! 

Best moment of the week:Yesterday afternoon was sweet--my sister in law Karla heard that I had a doctor's appointment yesterday afternoon, and asked if she could take Lizzy after Mom's Group to go for a hike with her and Justin's dad so that I could go to the appointment solo. I even had enough time to meet my sister for a quick bento date. It was kinda nice!

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Read Blogs? Then you NEED this.

Okay, so this is not a new thing...I'm fully aware that there are many, many, many people out there who are already using this awesome little goodie from Google, but up until earlier this week, I had no idea it existed. And I consider myself to be someone who is at least moderately up-to-date with techy stuff, so I figured there may be another person or two out there who could also benefit from this quick and easy little tip.

So, I think most people probably use Google Reader to manage the blogs that they read. I know I do, and I have things organized into different categories (i.e. Daily Reads, Photography Inspiration, Faith, Fashion, etc). But sometimes, I'll add a new blog to one of the categories, and then sort of forget who they are. Usually because for whatever reason, my brain doesn't associate the person with the blog name. So, even if they're in my "Daily Reads" folder, I don't always tend to read their updates all that frequently, because when I see their blog name, all I think is 'Who is THAT again? Why are they in here?' And I really don't tend to click through and actually leave a comment. Maybe I'm the only one like this with their Reader, but there you have it.

So, this is where the magic of the Google Next button comes in. Basically, you add the Next button to your bookmark bar. Then, when you're signed into Reader, you click through to one blog from your Reader.

Here, I clicked through to Ashley's blog. Once I've finsihed reading and/or commenting, I click the Next Button (in the yellow box above), and it automatically marks Ashley's blog post as read over in Reader, and then takes me to the next unread blog post in my Reader....which in this case was Samantha's blog. And from there, I can read, comment, or simply click "Next" again to keep going.

The really awesome thing is that you can set up the Next Button to pull from your entire Reader OR from just one of your folders--so in this case, mine is set up to only pull from my "Daily Reads" folder of Google Reader. When I click Next, I'm only getting the blogs in that category.

For me, this whole thing is genius for several reasons: 
(1) I really like seeing people's smiling faces and their blog designs!
(2) I don't miss a blog that I want to read just because I cannot seem to make my brain associate the person with the blog name. Which happens more often than I wish it did.
(3) Commenting is a CINCH.
(4) I'm able to more quickly determine if a blog that I have filed in a particular category in my reader does or doesn't fit where I've filed it. Which is a nice thing for when I go on a blog-adding spree and add 150 blogs to my "Daily Reads" folder...which is maybe a little overambitious for, you know....daily reading. Seeing the actual blog (rather than just the blog name) makes it easier for me to go through and determine which ones I really want to read daily, and which blogs I want to check in on weekly, monthly, or with some other frequency.

Sold yet? It's awesome, I promise. And so simple to install! Here's what you do:
  • Log in to Reader. 
  • Over on the right-hand side of the page, see the little button with the gear? Click it. And then click "Reader Settings". 
  • From there, click the grey tab that says "Goodies". 
  • You'll see a bold heading that says "Put Reader in a Bookmark". That's what you want to do--just follow the instructions from there!

Monday, September 17, 2012

Thinking About Having A Baby...Again

So I've been thinking a little a lot lately about doing the whole labor and delivery thing again. Just like before, it's something that I have a little bit of anxiety about...I feel like there's just so many scary things that can happen and so much that can go wrong (seriously, we watched What to Expect When You're Expecting the other night, and one of the delivery scenes had me up almost all night freaking out and worrying). It's a situation where I really have very little control, and I like to be in control.

Anyway, I've been reflecting on what labor and delivery were like for me with Lizzy...I wrote about it shortly after she was born, but in having a couple years to think about it and read about a gazillion other birth stories, I think I have a slightly different take on things now than I did then...and some of it I just want to get out of my brain and down on paper.

First, here's a summary of how things went with Lizzy:
My water broke about 4am on a Sunday morning. I got in the shower almost right away, and noticed that my contractions were coming really fast and furious. I'd have contractions that were about 3 minutes long, then a thirty seconds in between, and then another 3 minute we headed to the hospital basically right away.

We got to the hospital at about 5am. I was dilated to 4cm, and was super discouraged, because I'd been dilated to a 3 for a few weeks (I think!). I felt like I hadn't been able to catch my breath since we had left home, and the contractions just kept coming and coming with no break, and I was getting hysterical. I was lucky to get 15-20 seconds in between each 2 or 3 minute contraction. In retrospect, if you look up the textbook definitions of transitional labor, that was exactly how I felt from the time my water broke up until this point...which is weird, because if I were only dilated to a 4, I wouldn't be in transition yet. Anyway, I asked for an epidural.

The anesthesiologist came around 6:30am. After he gave me the epidural, I mostly felt better, but almost as soon as he administered it, I couldn't stop shaking uncontrollably. Justin kept giving me blankets, and I kept telling him that I was NOT cold, I just couldn't stop shaking. Sometime shortly after that, shift change happened, and I had a new nurse, who Justin really liked and I really did not. I kept telling her that I was feeling a lot of pressure and thought I needed to be checked. She kept telling me, "Oh honey, it's your first baby, you're going to be here for a very long time." She also kept telling me to eat something, and that Justin needed to take a nap...neither of which I thought were good ideas, and totally ignored her when she brought me some food.

Sometime between 8am and 9am, I finally convinced the nurse to check me...and I was dilated to a 10. I remember commenting that I was starting to feel a lot of pain again, and her responding something about how my IV had gotten bumped and I'd been given way too much fluid. Something like 5 bags since I'd been there.

I sort of remember a doctor  (not mine) coming in, and I remember being given the okay to push. Justin and my mom kept asking if I was okay because I was basically silent the whole time (in my own world, I guess). I remember not being sure if I was pushing the right way, and also Justin telling me that I actually needed to inhale in between pushes. I remember being in quite a bit of pain, and being surprised about it--doctors have always told me that I have a very high pain tolerance, and everyone had told me that with an epidural, I should expect pressure, but not pain. But I felt PAIN, and remember wondering if there was a problem with the epidural, but being told that if there was, it was too late to do anything about.

And then, at 10:25am, she was born. 6 hours and 25 minutes after my water broke. I needed a few stitches, and I totally and VIVIDLY remember feeling those. I remember wincing and saying "Ow! Ow! I can feel that!", and the doctor saying that I shouldn't be able to feel that, and that he'd hurry up.

I think I was up and walking around by noon or shortly thereafter. I'd heard horror stories from people about how long it took them to feel their legs again after an epidural, and I was surprised that I could totally feel mine pretty quickly afterwards. That said, recovery was awful. I was in a lot of pain for weeks. I was SO SO SO swollen, everywhere (apparently due to the incident with being given too much fluid). I remember feeling like everything hurt all the time, and wondering why no one had told me how awful the recovery was. Looking back, I really don't remember much of the first week, other than it was terrible and I was miserable.

So. That's that. Now, given some's what I've been wondering: 
I remember that in the week before my water broke, we had almost gone to the hospital 3 or 4 times. I'd been having steady contractions, but they just never got any closer together. Looking back, I wonder if I'd been in early labor for a day (or two even) before my water broke, and just didn't fully realize it. I've been a little stressed about the fact that they say labor is shorter with each subsequent baby...and if labor is much shorter than it was with Lizzy, I'm worried about getting to the hospital in time! So, thinking that I'd been in early labor makes me feel a little better, for some reason.

I also wonder whether or not the epidural actually worked for me...or how long it worked for? I think it worked initially, and may have allowed me to relax and fully dilate. But then after that point, I'm not sure that it worked for much longer, and I have no idea whether that was due to the amount of fluids I'd been given, or something else. But I really don't KNOW for sure whether it was working or not...I have nothing to compare it to. I've wondered since shortly after Lizzy was born whether not getting an epidural would have made a difference in how I felt postpartum...if I'd have had an easier recovery if I hadn't gotten one. I don't know. Sometimes I wonder if knowing then that I'd only have another couple hours in labor, if I couldn't have gone without it. I think I freaked out initially hearing I was only dilated to a 4, and thinking that I'd have another 20+ hours in labor and that I couldn't handle contractions like that for another 20+ hours. But 2 or 3 hours? I wonder if knowing that it was only like 2-3 more hours would have felt more do-able. Then, on the other hand, I sometimes feel like the reason I dilated to a 10 so quickly was because the epidural allowed me to finally relax. Or maybe that first time I was checked, I was measured incorrectly, and I really was starting to approach transition, like I felt. I just don't know...

I find myself going back and forth between thinking that I should really try to go without an epidural this time...but then again, who knows whether labor this time will be anything like it was with Lizzy? It COULD be 20 hours for all I know. I could not get the epidural only to be miserable and have problems progressing because I can't relax. Or, I could not get the epidural, and find that it really makes all the difference in terms of recovery. Or, I could get an epidural, and find that it's a completely different experience than last time, for better or for worse. I have no idea.

Feel free to chime in y'all...because I'm really feeling torn. Did anybody have an epidural with one kiddo and not with another? What was that difference like for you?

How to Make Fruit Leather

So last week, a local farm was offering you-pick peaches for about 50 cents a pound. Lizzy and I went, picked for about half an hour, filled our two boxes, and went to leave. I'm still not quite sure how this happened, but we had picked almost 70 pounds of peaches!

It didn't seem like a lot at first. But then, I'd practically peel and slice peaches to freeze all day long, and realize that it didn't even look like I'd made a DENT in the process. So, when I saw that my friend Kaitlin's sister (Megan) posted about making fruit leather out of the peaches she'd picked, I decided to give it a try and scoured Google/Pinterest looking for recipes. I ended up mostly following the directions from this recipe, with a few small variations, and it really was pretty easy.

Here's what you need: 
-Fruit of your choice
-Blender or food processor
-Saran Wrap OR a silpat baking sheet
-Cookie Sheet
-If using peaches, a little lemon juice
-To be at home for 6+ hours

First, pre-heat your oven to the lowest possible setting (I tried both 175 degrees and 200 degrees and had success with both). Then, slice your fruit into chunks that will be manageable by your blender/food processor. I was pureeing big batches of peaches at a time and then sticking the puree in the fridge to use as needed for the fruit leather, so I'm not sure how much you'd need for a single batch, but I'd probably guess about 3 cups of sliced/prepared fruit.

Then, blend away! If you're using peaches, I'd suggest adding a couple squirts of lemon juice to help brighten the flavor and keep the peaches from turning brown too quickly. Many recipes will also recommend adding honey, agave, or sugar at this stage, but I probably wouldn't unless your fruit was really really under-ripe and had no natural flavor.

-Then, take a cookie sheet and lay a single sheet of Saran-Wrap over the sheet, allowing a few extra inches of plastic wrap on each end for shrinkage. Smooth out as many wrinkles as possible, but do not pull the plastic wrap tight around the edges of the pan. Yes, you're going to put the Saran-Wrap in the oven. I seems weird. But most Saran-Wrap is microwave safe, and at 175 degrees, your oven is probably a lot less warm than your microwave would be. That said, if you just can't get past the idea of putting Saran-Wrap in the oven, then use a Silpat baking sheet instead. I do not suggest using parchment paper or wax paper. The fruit leather will stick to both, I promise you.

Anyway, pour a smallish amount of your fruit puree onto the cookie sheet. The aim is to just cover the surface area of the cookie sheet--I'd say you want your puree to be 1/8" thick or less, and as uniform in thickness as possible. If you have one of those off-set frosting spreaders for cakes, this would be a perfect thing to use it for. I don't have one, so I just tilted the pan this way and that until the puree had covered most of the entire pan.

(Mine looked like this when it was all spread out)

Then, pop them into the oven. I did two batches at a time with no problem. Now, if you're baking at 175 or lower, I'd plan to check on the fruit leather after 4 hours. If you're baking at 200, check it after 3. Close the oven door, and walk away!

When you come back to check the fruit leather, you'll want to gently press a clean finger into the center of the pan. The fruit leather is done when you can remove your finger without getting any fruit residue. When baking at 175, this took about 6 hours. When baking at 200, this sometimes took more like 4. After that first initial check, you'll probably want to check pretty frequently, because the fruit leather tends to go from not-done to over-done really fast.

Now, here's the part that gets frustrating for a lot of people--the edges usually get done much more quickly than the middle. So, by the time the center is done and no longer tacky, the edges are usually pretty crispy. BUT, you can usually save it! Once you remove the pan from the oven, just pray the edges with a little water in a squirt bottle (or blot with a damp paper towel) and let sit for a half an hour or so. This usually re-hydrates the fruit leather enough to make it roll-able. Is the whole pan crispy? Don't toss it out-- you can still eat it! The crunchiness is nice over ice cream, or as a garnish. Or just to eat...because it is GOOD. Even when it's crunchy. Basically, don't stress over it. 

And lastly, you're ready to roll. I usually rolled up the whole pan of fruit leather at once, and then used clean scissors to slice the large roll into individual servings. I tossed the individual servings into a mason jar for storage. I have no doubt these things will get eaten really quickly in our house, so I didn't bother to make them cute, but you could also transfer them to individual pieces of parchment paper, roll them up, and tie with baker's twine. If you're fancy. But I'm not fancy, so there.

Linking up with AP for Project Pinterest!

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Pregnancy #2: 30 & 31 weeks

31 Weeks
And 31 weeks with Lizzy (same shirt and all, ha!)

How far along: 31 weeks.

Size of baby: A pineapple (The Bump) or four navel oranges (Baby Center).  In other words, about 15.2-16.7 inches inches and 2.5-3.8 pounds.

Weight Gain: +16ish pounds total, from pre-pregnancy weight, which means I've gained 3 pounds a week over the last two weeks! Oye! This makes sense, as I've been absolutely ravenous now that I'm not dealing with heartburn, but I'm hoping to get back to a 1 pound a week gain here soon.

Symptoms: The doctor gave the ok for Zantac twice-a-day, and it's made a HUGE difference heartburn wise, thankfully. Other than that, what I think is some weird nerve stuff depending on how she's laying. Once last week I woke up kind of disoriented and also my right hand was numb. It was bizarre, but subsided shortly after I felt the baby move positions. Later in the day, my right leg went numb, but again, it went away after I felt her move. I had nerve issues towards the end of my pregnancy with Lizzy too (I'd just randomly black out), but at that point, she was pretty much locked into position, so it was a bit of a different scenario. Also, I'm just remembering that at my appointment last week, my blood pressure was low...I wonder if that's related as well? I'll have to ask about it next week.

Exercise: Does picking 70 pounds of peaches and hauling them to the car count? I'm going to vote that it does.

Clothes: Yep, maternity.

Cravings/Aversions: Not especially. I'm still loving watermelon, and fruit in general.

Movement: Yep :)

Worries: Just getting stuff done! It's frustrating to me that I'll work on stuff for a few hours, and then have Braxton-Hicks and have to sit down for another few hours. I'm looking forward to that point where they say "go ahead, even if it makes you contract." I sat down and made a big list of everything the other day, and it's a lot to do. And that's just the stuff here at home, and not counting the Harvest Fest that I'm helping organize at church!

Milestones: All five senses are now in working order--she even responds to light! Other than that, I think there's just some serious brain development going on this week.

What's Different This Time: Last time, at 31 weeks we'd just finished our childbirth class at the hospital, and I was thinking a lot about labor and delivery. I'm thinking a lot about labor and delivery this time too, but that's probably worth its own post eventually.

Also, I thought it was funny that the nursery was basically done, aside from painting a dresser. This time, almost ALL we've done nursery wise is painting the dresser, ha!

Best moment of the week: We were outside priming the rocking chair yesterday, and Lizzy said, "Awww, this is for my baby sister, Rebecca Tinkerbell!"

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

BQOTD: Kids & Money

So in the comments of yesterday's post, Katie brought up a great point about kids and money--that teaching younger kids about money and budgeting can be tricky, and I think that sometimes, if not done the right way, it can really stress kids out more than make them understand the basics of budgeting and living within our means, which is hopefully the goal. And I thought her comment was right on--it's a fine line to walk!

And then, there was that anonymous comment, which was just really so absurd I don't even have words to address it or the energy to be upset about it. But once again, it got me thinking about kids and money...and I think there are probably a lot of different approaches that families take when it comes to talking and teaching their kids about money, and I'd like to talk some more about it.

I had one friend who, even in high school, was required to save a certain percentage of her paycheck, to give a certain percentage of her paycheck to charity, and then could only spend what was left. I had some friends who received allowances, and some friends who didn't. Some who were expected to pay for their car insurance and some who weren't. Some who basically paid for everything once they started working, and some whose jobs were really just for "fun money."

Anyway, my point is that there are LOTS of different approaches to teaching kids about money and budgeting...and I'm sure those approaches also vary based on the ages of the kiddos. I'm curious if you all have thought about what approach you'll take with your kids (real kids or hypothetical!). So, today's burning question of the day is:

How do you plan to teach your kids about money and budgeting from birth to 5th grade?

Monday, September 10, 2012


Over the last month, we've had a lot of conversations with Lizzy that have gone like this:

Lizzy: Look! There's Dairy Queen! I want a small strawberry sundae please!
Me: Thanks for using nice manners, but we aren't getting ice cream today.
Lizzy: But why?
Me: Because it's just not in the budget right now.
Lizzy: Oh. 


Lizzy: I want Goldfishie crackers for lunch!
Me: You can have peanut butter and jelly for lunch, but we're all out of Goldfish crackers.
Lizzy: We need to go to the store and buy some.
Me: You're right--in two days, on payday we'll go to the grocery store and get some other Goldfish crackers, but right now we have lots of other things we can eat instead.
Lizzy: But I want fish crackers.
Me: I know, but we have other food to eat instead. Sometimes we don't always get to eat the exact things we want right when we want them.
Lizzy: I have a holler dollar (hundred dollars) in my piggy bank. I will give it to you and you can put it in the budget so I can buy goldfish crackers TODAY.
Me: Lizzy, that's so thoughtful of you, but your Dad and I will always buy enough food for us to eat. I know you really want goldfish crackers, but we have lots of other things to eat instead for now, and in two days, we can get some more at the grocery store.

Anyway, the "budget" is a frequent conversation around our house right now, which is honestly totally fine by me. I like that Lizzy is seeing that the "budget" translates in a real way in our house, sometimes meaning that we might have to wait a few days before doing something, even if it's something that we really want. I think it's good for her to see that when the budget is tight, we don't eat out a lot or buy lots of extras--those things are special treats, not necessarily givens.

This past Friday, Justin was off work. We were driving by 7-11, and Lizzy said, "Dad, I would love a slurpee. Could I have a slurpee?" 

I was expecting the usual "No sweetheart, not today." {It isn't that we can't afford to buy a slurpee, it's just that our eating out portion of the budget is usually very small, and we try to make sure we don't dwindle it away on junk} Anyway, I was expecting a no, but instead Justin said "You bet!" and we pulled in. Justin turned to me, shrugged, and said, "Sometimes, you just have to say yes." Lizzy was so excited getting out of the car that I thought she was going to burst.


And at that moment, I don't think I could have loved the both of them any more. Because isn't that just the truth? Sometimes, you just have to say yes. Not every time, but sometimes. And this time?  I'm so glad he did.

Wednesday, September 5, 2012



Tomorrow, I'll be 30 weeks pregnant. And possibly for the first time EVER in my life, I'm anxious for fall. For infinity scarves that I haven't yet knit. For boots that I don't (yet) have, and skinny jeans that I probably won't wear. But most of all, meeting this sweet baby girl for the first time. This fall, there's excitement in the air.

I keep having to remind myself to slow down and remember how much I love summer. How even though our calendar is booking up quickly, we have GOT to make room for at least one or two more trips up to the lake before fall really arrives...because come November, even with all the good things that it will bring, I'm going to miss this. 

I'll miss the splash of the water on my face and the wind in my hair as we float on the water. I'll miss the rocking of the boat with the gentle waves that feels so right to me--like I'm home and can finally relax all the way. I'll miss watching Lizzy's silly grin as she falls asleep on the boat, and her being so concerned when Justin falls wakeboarding (no matter how many times we reassure her that he's having fun and that mom loves to do it too). I'll miss the warm days that yield to the early evenings just chilly enough for yoga pants and a sweatshirt. I'll miss it all. 

Exciting things are coming...but I also can't forget that in a few months, these WILL be the exciting things that I'm so desperately looking forward to when summer finally rolls around again. So, with all the "to-do-before-baby" lists and stress that there are only five Saturdays that haven't yet been booked between now and my due date...I've got to find a way to make as much time for the now as I'm making for the future. We've got to make time for this.

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

The Scoop with My Hair {Dove Conditioner Review}

Thank you all for your sweet comments about my hair on my last bump update post! You all were too sweet...and also totally made me laugh because I knew that this post about my experience using Dove's Nourishing Oil Care Conditioner was coming up next, and that it is directly related to how my hair looks now.

So, let's get right to it, shall we? First, I'll tell you this about my hair:
-I have a lot of hair.
-It's super thick. Like REALLY thick. Like 5+ hairties when I run.
-It's natural texture tends to be slightly dry and also pretty frizzy, and this tends to get worse when I'm pregnant.
-I am way overdue for an appointment with my favorite hair girl (my last cut was about 22 weeks ago).

For the most part, I buy inexpensive drugstore shampoos and conditioners. Basically, whatever is on sale. I have a salon brand conditioner that I save for special occasions, but mostly it's just the drugstore stuff...and I've tried just about every brand out there, including other varieties of Dove shampoos and conditioners in the past. I'd look for product that said it was made for dry and/or frizzy hair, but honestly didn't spend too much time thinking about it because I usually just tossed my hair up in a ponytail or messy bun anyway--to wear down, I typically have to blowdry AND straighten my hair, and I just don't have time for that on a regular basis.
A few weeks ago, Dove's Nourishing Oil Care Conditioner arrived on my doorstep via BlogHer. It came with shiny claims that it would help repair dry, rough, and frizzy hair while also being a weightless conditioner. To be honest, I thought 'Man, that would be nice!' but didn't really have high hopes that it would fulfill those claims any more than any of the other drugstore brands I've tried (which is about mediocre at best). That same day, I jumped in the shower at the last minute before heading off to one of Justin's baseball games, figuring that I'd let my hair air dry, and then just toss it up in a bun since it would be all frizzy and gross. dried beautifully, car windows down and all. I was so stunned that I snapped a photo and uploaded it to Instagram right away. Because honestly, I don't think my hair has EVER looked this good just air-drying with no additional fussing or product. And it's not a coincidence. When I use the Dove Nourishing Oil Care Conditioner, my hair looks good without really trying. And also without the greasiness and weight that I was expecting from an oil conditioner. I can take a shower before bed, toss it up in a sock bun, and wake up to nice smooth curls just like in the last bump update. Even though my hair is usually frizzy as all get out. Even though I have split ends galore. Seriously, that's it. It's so easy, and looks so polished! I'm a convert--especially since it retails for about $4 a bottle. I don't say this lightly, but I absolutely love it...I think even more than my go-to salon brand! Yes, seriously.

So anyway, that's the scoop with my hair! Have any of you guys tried any of the newer Dove conditioners? What do you think? Be sure to check out the sweepstakes below as well as the coupon for $1.50 off a Dove Hair Therapy Product!

Sweepstakes Prompt: How much do you typically spend on conditioner? 

Enter to win a $1,000 Spafinder gift certificate!



You may receive (2) total entries by selecting from the following entry methods:

a) Follow this link, and provide your email address and your response to the Promotion prompt
b) Tweet (public message) about this promotion; including exactly the following unique term in your tweet message: "#SweepstakesEntry"; and then visit this link to provide your email address and the URL to that Tweet.
c) Blog about this promotion, including a disclosure that you are receiving a sweepstakes entry in exchange for writing the blog post, and then visit this link to provide your email address and the URL to that post.

This giveaway is open to US Residents age 18 or older. Winners will be selected via random draw, and will be notified by e-mail. Winners will have 72 hours to claim the prize, or an alternative winner will be selected.

The Official Rules are available here.

This sweepstakes runs from 9/4/2012 - 9/30/2012

Be sure to visit Dove® to get a coupon for $1.50 off Dove Hair Therapy products.
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

Blog Archive


Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License.