Nov 30, 2010

Freezer Meals

Yesterday I woke up early after only five and a half hours of sleep.

(I was tired.)

But I wanted to get up on my first real, official day of maternity leave and DO something. So I fixed a delicious breakfast of waffles and eggs and fakin' bacon for myself and the hubs before he left for work. And instead of crawling into bed for more sleep, I trekked to Walmart to do some major grocery shopping.

Then I came home and made a bunch of food that I can't touch for two weeks because I stuck it in the freezer specifically for when Adelaide gets here and the thought of cooking is beyond my mental capacity.

On the menu (sorry for the lack of pictures):
  • 18 breakfast burritos - 9 sausage and 9 beef (all veggie meat of course). These are SO easy and quick and awesome for rushing around in the morning. Not to mention the insane amount of protein per burrito. I can post the recipe if anyone is interested.

  • Spinach Lasagna. I haven't had this before but it looked mighty tasty. Lots of sauce and yummy cheese.

  • Veggie Enchiladas. I'm really excited for this casserole dish. The enchiladas themselves have corn, spinach, black beans, and cheese. And of course I made the enchilada sauce, which actually looks, smells, and tastes like the enchilada sauce I remember from my favorite college-town Mexican place.

  • Veggie Burgers. The recipe says it makes 4, but I got 6 out of it. I wrapped each individually and then bagged them up two in a bag so that they'd be good to take out for a dinner for the two of us. I don't know how these will taste, burger-wise, but the patties did smell good and the little bit that I did taste was yummy. But I don't think they'll be burgers.

  • Pizza Bagels. I made 10 whole wheat bagel halves, topped with pizza sauce, cheese, and an assortment of toppings. And just like the recipe said to, I broiled until the cheese melted, let them completely cool, and then bagged them separately. They will be a quick fix (with about 8 grams of protein each, plus your calcium from the cheese) by just popping them in the toaster oven for a few minutes.

I even got the hubs to agree not to touch anything on that freezer shelf until baby Adelaide gets here. I figure while we have the time and energy to cook now, we should. Later when we're sleep-deprived, we don't want to regret heating up and devouring that delicious enchilada dish or munching on those pizza bagels.

All in all, for a day of cooking, I'm glad to have a freezer full of yummy, nutritous food on hand! Hopefully that'll help us in the first couple weeks not to call Dominos for their num-yummy white sauce, onion, and red bell pepper pizza. Maybe.

Nov 29, 2010

You'd think by now...

...I'd remember to post my weekly picture updates on time! Oh well. Blame it on the fatigue. I've been tired A LOT. Chalk it up to my extra 35 pounds I'm lugging around, and the fact that I'm getting ready to push a freaking human out of my wooha. (Kind of a scary though, ya know.)

Anyway, here's my 37-week picture. Unfortunately I'm not really in focus, but the beautiful red leaves are! One of our cameras that we shipped off to Nikon (we actually had two broken ones!) should be fixed and here early this week so we can start getting good pictures again (just in time!).

38-week pictures coming really soon! Umm.... promise?

Nov 26, 2010

Black Friday Fill-Ins

I'm not crazy, so I'm not going out today on the busiest, most insane, and perhaps most dangerous shopping day of the whole year. (But, if I had a shopping buddy, I might actually want to try it out one day, as I've never done it!) Instead, I slept in till, oh, about now, and I'm blogging, and I'm about to make some kick-ass french toast (for the first time, so how kick-ass it will be, I don't know). And little one is tumbling about in there, so I think she's excited for her first taste of the toast herself!

[Our tree, trimmed and gorgeous!]

Here you go:

1. Three things I must have on my Thanksgiving table: 1) Mashed potatoes, 2) Canned cranberry sauce, 3) Meatless turkey.

2. Poor Kevin has had a cough for a few days, so the past couple of nights, he's been sacked out on the couch so I could sleep.

3. This is been a busy, fast, wonderful year.

4. I've got my tree up, now it's time to decorate everything else!

5. Oh, man, thankfully it's only day 2 of my hubby's 4-day weekend, because I'm loving all this time with him!

6. Someday I will perfect the art of procrastinating.

7. And as for the weekend, tonight I'm looking forward to hanging out with family again, tomorrow my plans include grocery shopping for a big cooking storm coming soon and Sunday, I want to hang Christmas lights (or rather, watch Kevin hang them)!

Nov 25, 2010

Before It's Too Late

Just wanted to say Happy Thanksgiving to the blog world.

I'm super thankful for so much this year. Here's 7 things off the top of my head after a long day of eating, visiting family, driving, and staying up late:
  1. My husband who I adore and who adores me back. It's wonderful to have found that person that makes me so happy. Sometimes I get so baffled at how it is that I happened to have found him, and how lucky I am to have him.
  2. This little person inside me who will some day be able to make lists like these, but for now seems content to kick me in the sides and hiccup all day long.
  3. My family and friends, who I am finding more and more important as the years and months go by, especially with this pregnancy. I guess it's my mommy-instinct kicking in, knowing that I will need that support system, but I definitely want people in my life who love me and let me know I'm alright.
  4. My cats, who are my furry kids. I love all four of them, and for different reasons. Just like people they are who they are.
  5. My health. I am extremely lucky that I have no major health issues. I attribute a lot of that to the fact that I take pretty good care of my body, though I could surely exercise more. But I eat a very healthy vegetarian diet and I am in tune with my body's needs for the most part. Tomorrow this may change, but for today, I'm glad I'm healthy and that my body is doing it's part to keep me here and part of life.
  6. My sewing machine. Seriously, I know, but I have been loving it lately. Not it specifically, because a lot of the time I'm punching it and cussing at it for locking up and me not knowing how to fix it.... But I think I'm mostly thankful that I just have one and that it enables me to make some pretty awesome stuff. I'm sure with my maternity leave, I'll have a little more time here and there to make some more awesome stuff, too.
  7. My home, which is slowly and surely coming together into a place that I want to be in. For the longest time I have been unhappy with it because it didn't feel like me, but now that we're working on it and painting it and making it nice, it feels more like home.

Okay, it's late. Happy Thanksgiving y'all.

Nov 24, 2010

Midwife appointment update

Yesterday I had an appointment with my midwife. It was a very basic appointment, where she basically just checked the baby and my blood pressure and asked me a few questions (headaches, swelling, drinking enough water, eating healthy foods, etc.). I feel I've been a bad patient as I haven't been drinking enough water and I've been eating quite a bit of junk food. But all is well, and baby is in perfect position. Still not fully engaged, as there's a bit of wiggle room with her head down there, but otherwise showing a good position. Heart tones were great as well, in the 140s with a bit of acceleration here and there, which is a good thing my midwife assured me.

Baby Adelaide hadn't been very active for the past couple of days, but my midwife says that as they get further along and more ready for the birth, babies settle down a bit. She said that if I do get worried, that I could just eat something sweet, lay down for a couple of hours and I should feel about 10 movements in that period of time. Thankfully though, the appointment must have woken her up, because baby has been very active since and I've not needed to worry.

As I get closer, my moods are going crazy! I'll be so excited to meet this little one, and the next minute I'm crying because I'm worried I won't do a good job as a mom. I stress about how the house gets so messy so quickly and that makes me think that if I can't keep my house clean how am I supposed to take care of a BABY??? I think nerves and excitement and anxiety and fear and joy are all mixed into one. Lack of sleep from tossing and turning (and getting up to pee), and a poorer than normal diet both have something to do with these mood swings, I'm sure. I'll take extra attention to get more rest and eat healthier these last couple of weeks (and spend time every day picking up a little here and there, no matter how tired I am).

It will be so soon that I get to meet my little sweet girl! I hope I'm ready.

Nov 23, 2010

Don't you find that adorable?

A fellow teacher just came in my room to say goodbye.  Tomorrow is my last day of work for the rest of the school year (it can't come fast enough) so as I'm seeing people, I'm saying goodbye.

She came in and the first thing she said was, "I guess I haven't seen you in a while... you're looking fuller in the face now, actually looking pregnant!"

Um, thanks?

Then, noticing my displeasure at her comments, she asked "You don't find that adorable?"


My appetite has definitely grown over the past 3 weeks and I've noticed it.  I can't stop eating!  I feel hungry all the time and no matter what I have, it doesn't satisfy me.   So yeah, I feel a little fatter than normal.  I hadn't really noticed it in my face, but of course I see myself everyday and maybe wouldn't notice it.  But to actually have someone tell me, and then say it's adorable.  Blech.

I need more sleep.

Nov 22, 2010

New Look

In real life, I never change things up. My hair has been the same for years. I don't wear different styles on different days (but if I do, I feel a little more self-conscious about it). I eat the same things over and over. Familiarity is comfortable for me. Chalk it up to my OCD tendencies (self-imposed, self-prescribed).

But the blog wasn't feeling airy and open and light enough for me, so I changed it up. And I like it a lot!

Do you?

Nov 20, 2010

20 Questions

Meet Me at Mikes posed these 20 questions, and I decided to join in just for fun.

I always did like questionnaires. In fact, my friend Hannah and I used to write out pages of silly preteen questions for each other to answer, and despite the fact that we had nearly every class together and hung out on the weekends and talked on the phone for hours every day, we still filled out those questionnaires. We still have them tucked away in shoeboxes in our closets.

Anyway, here we go:

Sweet or Savoury? Right now, I'm going with sweet. I have been craving sugar of all sorts lately, and steering clear isn't much fun.

Dresses or Jeans? Jeans, fo sho. I rarely, rarely, rarely wear dress, and skirts only on occasion. I'd much rather slip into that worn pair of jeans that I know fits so well and goes good with any shirt.

House or Apartment? House. I need to be able to paint and nail holes in the wall.

Shop Online or Offline? Offline. When I'm online, there are often way too many choices and the decision-making part of my brain gets overwhelmed.

DVDs or Downloads? If money weren't an issue, definitely DVDs. There's just something about having the case, and the pictures and the words.

Cocktails or Juice? Juice, 100%.

Chocolate or Strawberry? Can't we have both?

Laptop or PC? Laptops are so convenient! They can go anywhere!

Magazines or Newspapers? Magazines are much prettier, with glossy pages and colorful pictures.

Facebook or Twitter? Facebook. I don't own a Twitter account, and don't really plan on one any time soon.

CDs or MP3s? Same answer as the DVDs or Downloads questions - except CDs are so much better than DVDs because you get the booklet with the lyrics sometimes!

Kids or Pets? Ouch. I can't choose. I mean, of course kids, but my cats are my kids too. So...

Macaron or Cupcakes? Cupcakes, yum!

Walk or Run? Walk. Running gives me shin splints that I absolutely hate.

Breakfast in Bed or Breakfast Out? Breakfast out, preferably at Bruegger's with a nice bagel and hot chocolate.

Market or Supermarket? I like the idea of a farmer's market, but the supermarket right now is our choice because of cost.

Sourdough or Grainy? Can I choose both, again?

Heels or Flats? Flats! Heels hurt my toes. I haven't worn a pair in years, even though I'm a shorty (5'2").

Late nights or Not? I'm totally a night owl! I'd much rather stay up late and sleep in than the opposite.

Coffee or Tea? If it ain't sweet tea, I don't want none of it. (That's my southern roots coming out.)


Join in?

Nov 19, 2010

Friday Fill-Ins (You know, these are so fun!)

Join in here.

1. Why does this baby want to be posterior?  There's only so many pelvic rocks I can do!

2. I want to see the world.

3. Thank you for supporting me, holding me, and loving me even when I cry in the Harris Teeter, my Mr. Brown.

4. Christmas is my favorite holiday because everything is so beautiful, and now because my daughter will be born close enough to it to be the best present ever!

5. I am SO ready to be on maternity leave! (4 more days of work, and counting!)

6. We can BE the difference to someone else if we make up our minds to be.

7. And as for the weekend, tonight I'm looking forward to working on Adelaide's quilt, now that I've finally gone to get more thread after running out of it, tomorrow my plans include maybe the Renaissance Festival? and Sunday, I want to decorate for Christmas (this is a heads up, hubby!)!

Nov 18, 2010

Quilt for Adelaide, part #1

I've set out to make a quilt for my baby girl.  I've never made a quilt before, but I saw this and decided I had to make one.  I think there's something endearing about a mother taking the time to make something for her child (at least, that's what I hope Adelaide will think!).  I'm sure there will be some snags in the road, but so far it's looking good. :)

I spent any free time I had at school/work cutting out the pieces.  In total there are 288 bits, but there are more that need to be cut (I'm thinking I need to add some rectangular pieces to finish out the edging, but I can share all that later!).

[Here are all the pieces stacked together.  It doesn't look like much, does it?]

[And fanned out so you can get an idea of the colors.  The lighting isn't the best in this photograph as it was taken with Kevin's cellphone, but you get the idea.  The really light piece on the right is actually a light turquoise.]

[I laid it all out (all 288 pieces) to figure out color placement.  I'm glad I did that because there ended up being a lot of switching things around until I was happy with what I had.  Again, the lighting isn't the best, but you get the idea!]

[And a close-up of the layout.  I love all these fabrics.  Some of them I've had forever (like the dark blue and the dark teal ones) but some of them are newer purchases from Hancock Fabrics... nothing special but it will match Adelaide's room very well!]

More updates on the quilt coming soon!

Nov 17, 2010

36 Weeks and the Hubster

I really wish our camera was working.  These are taken with Kevin's cellphone.  They aren't bad, but they aren't good, either.  I just want our nice camera fixed soon, so it's here and waiting with all our other goodies for the birth.  Yes, I will be one of those people who takes pictures of the birth.  Why wouldn't I?  This will be the most important day of my life.  I need pictures to document the momentous occasion that is the birth of our daughter!

[I think I look sleepy.  I probably am, considering how I feel most of the day now.]

And this is the hubster, Kevin, holding our cat Cassiey.  He can't take a photo without making a face like this!  I can't wait to see him as a dad.  He already loves this little girl so much and talks to her and jokes and laughs and pretends that she knows what the heck he's saying.  Sometimes he gets so close that his beard prickles my belly, and that hurts... but I know it's out of love so I try not to make a big deal (even though I hate, hate, hate when he prickles me).

I wonder who Adelaide is going to be like?  I wonder what her personality will be, who she will become?  What music she will like, what jokes she will tell, what will make her sad, who she will choose to love?  I know she will be a special person, though.  All the rest will fall into place as it happens!

Nov 16, 2010

Clothes on the Line

All the clothes are washed, dried, and put away.  Despite the mountain of pink, I have fallen in love with the little footie pajamas, the teeny tiny shirts, and the zip-up jackets for our smallest people.  Even Kevin got all gooey after seeing all this on the line.  

I've organized her dresser and gotten everything into their little compartments.  A space for the socks, a space for the nighties, a space for the pants.  One drawer for newborn-sized clothing, and another for 0-3 months, just in case she doesn't fit into the newborn sizes.  (Or in case she grows out of them super fast.)

Everything else is separated by size into bins in her closet, labeled with a gray marker to match the room.  6-9 months, 12 months, 18 months, 24 months/2T, 3T and older.  I've gotten a lot of hand-me-downs.  Our girl will be well-dressed for at least the first 2 years!  I'm just lacking in the 3-6 month department, but we'll make it work.

Last night was a bit overwhelming with piles of clothes on the floor, but now that everything is put away I feel much better.  I've picked out 3 choices for her coming-home outfit.  Kevin couldn't even pick a favorite, so we'll have to wait and see what we feel like putting on her when the time comes.  One of the outfits is newborn sized, and the other is in 0-3 months.

I can't wait to dress this little girl!  

Nov 12, 2010

35 Weeks, a bit late

Unfortunately our wonderful camera has died and for the moment is being shipped off to Nikon who will hopefully fix it quickly (like, before the birth). So the 35 week photos are from Kevin's camera phone. Obviously the quality isn't the same, but at least it's a picture, right?

Doesn't my belly look abso-freaking-lutely humongous? And to think I have another few weeks of incubation time!

And last weekend, my friend and moma and sister came to visit to throw me a baby shower (pictures soon). This is me with my little sister, who I hadn't seen in nearly 11 months for many reasons. It was so good to be around her again! She's a great girl with a lot of potential for a wonderful life! In this picture though, I think my belly looks bigger than it really is because there's a shadow from it on my sister. She said she liked this picture because the curve of my belly fit perfectly right under the curve from her boobs, haha!

Friday Fill-Ins

1. When pigs fly I hope my camera is working.  If it happened today I wouldn't be able to get proof and nobody would believe me.

2. It's amazing how quickly some people will cut you out from their lives, for the silliest things (such as being authentically truthful for once)... I mean, seriously?!

3. Call me fat and you'll have a teary, slobbery, snotty pregnant woman on your hands.

4. I could really use some chocolate if you know what I mean.

5. The most entertaining person in my life is Kevin because he's a big goofball... always making me laugh whether I want to or not!

6. First me, then a 2nd grade teacher, then a 3rd grade teacher, then another 3rd teacher got pregnant, all within 5 months!  Who's next?

7. And as for the weekend, tonight I'm looking forward to cleaning my house!!!, tomorrow my plans include visiting Kevin's sick grandmother :( and Sunday, I want to build a bookcase (finally) for Adelaide's room!

Nov 10, 2010

Numb Tummy! And other pregnancy woes...

I've had a good pregnancy, I'll admit.  Compared to the horror stories that I hear women going through, I've been lucky.  No morning sickness, no constant backache, no sciatica, no major swelling.  

But just because I've not gone through major problems for the past 35 weeks doesn't mean that it's all roses over here.  Here's some of the issues I'm beginning to have:
  • Swollen, tingly hands.  In the morning when I wake up my hands will be so sore!  It's difficult for me to bend my fingers and sometimes they feel like the joints are popping in and out!  They tingle and they feel swollen, though they don't look that swollen.  (Well, except for the one time that I tried wearing a wrist brace to help the soreness... when I woke up, my hand extending out from the brace was very visibly swollen!!)  My midwife says it's probably because of the mix of the hormone relaxin and water retention.
  • Sore wrists.  This is carpel tunnel syndrome.  It creeps up during pregnancy because of pressure on the nerves in your wrists.  So far it's just my right hand (my dominant hand), and it mostly just hurts when I'm trying to hoist myself out of bed for the bathroom or waking up in the morning.
  • Numb tummy!  The skin on my stomach around my belly button feels numb all the time!  It started at around 30 weeks and the numb area has just gotten bigger and bigger as my stomach does the same!  Some think it's due to the baby pressing on a nerve, others (and myself) think it's because your skin is stretched so tight.  It's totally fine, and my midwife says not to worry.
  • Sore feet.  Duh!  I'm carrying around 30 extra pounds for hours and hours every day.  I'm a teacher and I'm on my feet all day running around the classroom, so of course my feet hurt at the end of the day!
  • Feeling so tired!  At the end of the day, when I come home after working for 8+ hours, it's all I can do to fix dinner and get some chores done.  It's not every day that I feel this way, but it's starting to be.  I've been lucky that it's only just now hitting me, but I hate it because I want to be working on Adelaide's room or getting other baby-related projects done... I just don't have as much energy.
So there's my list.  It's not too bad, but then again... I still have almost 5 weeks to go.  Who knows what will creep up on me?  If you're preggers like me, hopefully you don't have any major problems that you're dealing with... and if you do have major issues, just remember it's for the best reason ever!

Nov 9, 2010

This book's going in the gutter! (Gutter bookshelf, that is...)

While working on Adelaide's room, I was trying to figure out what to do with a wonky-sized corner.  The wall facing the doorway has a window, but the window is not centered (drives me nutty!).  To the right of the window, we have the dresser and wet pail.

To the left, we had a 3-ft span.  I was originally wanting to do some sort of corner bookshelf/bench/cubby thing, but I realized when doing all the measuring and figuring, that the vent would either have to be covered up or blocked.  It is the only vent in the room so that's not an option.  I don't really want Adelaide to freeze in the winter or burn up in the summer.

So, after seeing lots of examples of this on other home/mommy/school blogs, I decided to make some bookshelves out of gutters!  I loved the idea for the simplicity of the look, the easiness of the project, and the cheapness of the whole thing.  

For $20, I was able to purchase the 10-ft vinyl gutter and 6 endcaps (3 left and 3 right) to create our three 3-ft long bookshelves.

After cutting them to size, with a bit of scrap left over, I sanded the pvc-like edges clean and attached the end caps.  I caulked along the inside of the caps to make sure they adhered really well and let them dry overnight.

The next day, Kevin and I measured exactly where we wanted them on the wall and found the studs so they would be nice and sturdy.  We predrilled holes in the gutters, and then screwed them into the studs, with a couple of other screws on the ends to add support.


Adding books makes them look so fantastic, right?!  And the idea behind these gutter bookshelves is that Adelaide will see the fronts of the books, instead of just the spine, therefore being more interested in reading the books.  The first is only 18 inches off the floor, so definitely in her reach, when she gets to moving around.  Nicer books will stay on the top shelf, and Moma will have to pull those down for reading to her :)

We still plan on making another bookshelf/cubby piece of furniture out of birch plywood, but that's still a work-in-progress and will go on the wall to the left of these bookshelves.  This child already has a lot of books, and will surely collect many more (just like me!).

Nov 4, 2010

34 Weeks

Can you believe that there used to be a lot of space between me and the other tree???  Now I'm getting so close!  With less than 6 weeks to go, I'm thinking I'll get there, for sure.  My friends and family are guessing as to which week they think I'll no longer fit!

Dear Adelaide,

Things are going really well, for the most part.  The house is getting tidier, your room is getting ready.  You are still head-down and the midwife thinks you're engaging, which means that your head is dropping down under my pelvic bone to get ready for birth!  

For some reason, now that I have 6 weeks left, everything feels surreal again.  In the beginning it didn't feel real because I couldn't feel you move.  Now you're so big that I simply can't ignore that you're there, but it feels unreal because it'll be so soon that your body will be out of my body.  And we'll be able to hold you and hear you and see you.  

I've been very lucky to have an easy pregnancy.  There are three other ladies at work that are pregnant.  One is due 2 weeks after you, and she's had problems with her back.  One is due in February and she got really bad morning sickness for a long time.  And the other is due in May with twins, and she's had a whole slew of pregnancy-related issues.  

Thankfully I've only had to deal with headaches (in the beginning, from not drinking enough water) and heartburn (off and on for the past few months.  I'm not taking any medicine for it though because I don't want it to get to you!) so I just have to deal with.  

However, I have developed a little bit of carpel tunnel syndrome, which makes my right wrist hurt pretty badly sometimes.  And in the morning when I wake up, my right hand feels so swollen and painful that sometimes I want to cry.  It's hard for me to bend my fingers or hold things first thing in the morning.  I think it's because I sleep mostly on my right side and the weight of my body on my arm makes it hard for the blood to flow.  And since there's so much more blood in my body now, for you, that equals painful swelling and joints.

Other than that, I've had no issues (well, and that week-long freakout of you being breech!).  I hope that the last 6 weeks continue to treat me well!  Stay in there, girl, and keep getting strong and ready for us!

We love you!

Nov 1, 2010

Check! Carpets are cleaned (by moi)!

On my baby-do list, I had "Get carpets professionally cleaned."  

Well, my carpets are cleaned, but not by a professional.  Instead of paying a stranger to come into my house and overcharge me for a pretty easy-to-do service, I bit the bullet and did it myself.

A couple of weeks ago the newspaper had a $10 off coupon to rent one of their Rug Doctor machines, and after the 24-hour rental and the shampoo and spot cleaner, the total was around $50. 

The hubster helped move almost everything out of the living room, and when you have a teeny tiny house and nowhere to put things, this is what happens to your teeny tiny dining room:

Plus there was stuff in the bedroom(s), like another armchair and the shoe rack.  Too much stuff!

The carpets are now clean and ready for baby crawling!