Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

My Favorite Things!

I stole this idea from some other bloggers, and thought I would share with you guys what I am loving right now in my life!

Yes To Carrots shampoo and conditioner. I got some fun $$ for early Christmas, and decided to splurge on some new stuff for me at Target. At $2 something for the sample, I wanted to be sure I liked it before buying the real deal! LOVE LOVE LOVE it.

On same said shopping trip....
Facial wipes, Yes To Cucumber. The smell is to die for, especially in mid-winter. I LURVED face wipes like this when I was in the hospital having Olivia, and I knew that is a must have for my hospital bag this time around.

This is actually Ava's.... but who are we kidding? She doesn't need it yet! I have had chronic congestion since becoming pregnant. The winter season is making it 800 times worse. This seems to put a dent in my issues while sleeping. With it, I sleep 70%, without it, maybe 40%. So I'll take it!

My chiropractor.... I love him more than life itself sometimes. I go once a week right now, and may increase that as we get closer to Ava's delivery. Sleep before- 30%, sleep since beginning care- 90%. Here is an article about the benefits during pregnancy.

Oh and my fancy stretch mark cream.... I swear this stuff has been a lifesaver! I have no new stretch marks and the ones from Olivia, I swear they have faded. With 6 weeks left, I know there is still plenty of time to get them, but in the meantime, I am in love!

My birth "plan"

This is a subject that is close to my heart, and I thought I would share a little bit about what it is, and why we made this choice.

If you didn't already know, I had a C-section with Olivia. When I went into the hospital, in very early labor (paranoid first time mom!), her heart-rate went through the roof shortly after we arrived, and stayed there. The on call docotor didn't like it, and decided a section was best. I did not question her. I don't doubt the decision, though I of course wish the scenario had been different. I had been planning and all natural birth, with no pain meds or other interventions. Needless to say, we got this:
 and could not be happier with the results :)

But this time, I want things to be different. When I walked into my first appointment with this pregnancy, I knew I wanted to ask her about doing a VBAC (vaginal birth after cesarean). But alas, I didn't have to ask. When I sat down, she said "you know, you are a great candidate for a VBAC, would you consider it?" Ummmm, yeah!! So no need to find a new provider, argue the benefits/risks, nothing. All things I was prepared to do. As it turns out, Dr. Crowe's success rate for VBACs is about 75% which exceeds the national average of 70%. All of which is awesome!

Why do I want this?  This is the way it is meant to be. My body did not fail me last time, and it won't this time either. Women are made for childbirth, and there is no reason that my previous birth should prevent a natural birth this time around. I prefer to have the least intervention possible, and the least amount of medication streamed into my child moments before she is even born. I have spent 9 months taking care of her, and I want her entry into the world to be just as wonderful.

Not to mention I now have a 2.5 year old at home. My recovery from Olivia's delivery was pretty good, but I was very doped up, couldn't drive, couldn't pick up anything heavier than my newborn, couldn't sleep, and was generally just recovering from major abdominal surgery. This time around, I will have help of course, but I need to be able to care for Olivia. I can't imagine recovering like I did last time, with a 2 year old running around! I really just want to avoid all of that!

So are there risks? Yes, as with any birth. The main risk for VBAC is uterine rupture from the scar of the previous section. Here is a journal article illustrating the real risks of this, and the chances. Long story short, the chances aren't any greater than they are for any other vaginal birth, marginally. It's still in the back of most people's minds though.

The greatest thing about my doctor is that she isn't treating this pregnancy any differently than any other. A lot of people attempting VBACs have to jump through flaming hoops and fall under a lot of "conditions" to be able to even try.  Dr Crowe will let me go to 42 weeks (with bi-weekly monitoring of Ava and I), she will not induce (which you don't want to with a VBAC, Pitocin can raise the chances significantly of uterine rupture, since the contractions are so much harder than they would naturally be), she still encourages me to stay home as long as possible, giving me no regulations on when is the "right time". When I mentioned that it would be a dream come true to literally walk into the hospital and be ready to push, she smiled and said "You would be so happy if that happened, and you would more than likely get the birth you want if you do that!" Or something to that affect.

I won't go on and on. But people ask me a lot about my decision, and I thought I would try to explain why we have decided to go this route.

Prayers appreciated! We can't wait to meet Ava, regardless of how she gets here. I know you can't either!! Let me know if you have any questions, and I would be happy to answer.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

And the last of the holiday baking...

Olivia and I had fun making tons of cake pops this year, and this may be our new go-to dessert for everything! So versatile, and we had a lot of fun making them! The reindeer and santa hats we did for a cookie swap, and the sprinkled ones were for her preschool teachers. They were a huge hit! They may not have looked just like the ones we modeled them after, but they did look pretty good!

First Haircut!!!

Akkk, we've been talking about this for a long time. I was vehemenently opposed for a very long time. Til O got a for sure mullet going on. I knew it was time for a trim, 2.5 years later! Matt was not so easy to convince, but I finally got him! Find below a pic of the mullet....
So off we went to some overpriced kids salon. Had I known how it would turn out, and that it took 3 minutes, I would have gone any old place!

For reaction, see below:

A whole lot of not thrilled..... took her a little while, then she finally calmed down enough to not scream like I was yanking her fingernails out...

Then it was over, and my baby officially grew up :(

Aunt Kay-Kays wedding!!

Olivia and I were blessed to participate in my BFF Katie's wedding last weekend. It was exhausting, being 32 weeks pregnant, but oh so worth it! We are so happy for her and her family!

Olivia was a flower girl, and on Friday for the rehearsal, she looked just adorable, as you can see:
Which did not make up for the fact that she was having NOTHING to do with getting down that aisle. To be expected. Maaaajor meltdown. So I hung it up. Sent her home with my mom and assumed that there was no way on earth she would do it on Saturday.

So Matt brought her to meet us at the church on Saturday, and again, she looked adorable!

And I looked, well, like a very pregnant bridesmaid.... :)

So she played with us while we were getting ready, and really attached herself to the other flower girl, who was about 5. I asked her at one point, and she said she wanted to be the flower girl with Taylor, so I thought we would give it a shot. Left her in the care of the other mom while I went down the aisle. Waited......

Lo and behold, my tiny 2 year old comes walking down the aisle, looking perfect, and perfectly dropping her flower petals on the floor. Didn't look up once to see mom, dad, or Mimi. Cue me crying.... like almost ugly crying. I had to distract myself since after all, this wasn't my daughter's wedding :)

What a day!!! She was so perfect and Matt and I were so extremely proud of her!

Course, then there was cake... and it was yummy! Too bad I didn't get any pictures of the bride and groom!

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

And my freezer...

This is where we stand. And unless I get another burst of energy, this may be where we stay. I am about over being pregnant... not ready to meet Ava, but ready to not be pregnant!
What's in there? Hope I get it all:

3 chicken casseroles
6 skillet lasagnas
3 dinners of chili
2 turkey pot pies
3 things of chicken noodle soup
2 beef stews
2 loafs of cranberry bread
1 loaf wheat bread
1 thing of cinnammon apples
1 grown up mac n cheese
1 chicken pot pie
1 bbq pork spare ribs
1 "husbands favorite" casserole, from my friend (so I'm not sure of the recipe!)
1 Spanish rice
1 Chicken spaghetti
1 9 pound turkeys
Assorted meats
tons of frozen veggies

So just frozen meals that need no prep, we have 25 meals! That is not counting things that are just in there that need to be prepared. I think that works!

Sweet Treat swap time!

My friend Rachel does a sweet treat swap every year. I always rack my brain to think of what to make. This year I decided to attempt Bakerella's cake pops. I am doing Santa hats and reindeer. Here is the finished product of the santa hats.

Are they perfect??? Ummmmmm, negative. But it was fun and pretty easy. I can see that it would get better with practice.

So the "recipe" is as follows:

One cake, from a box, made into a 9x13 cake. Cool and crumble.
Mix with one can frosting. You may not quite use the entire can.

Roll into triangles, or whatever shape that is....

I stuck mine in the freezer when they were done, cause I knew I wasn't going to be able to finish the same day.

So then you get a lot of colors of candy melts.

I dipped the ends into white, and then put white sprinkles on that part. Stuck on a stick and then put into a Styrofoam block to "dry". Then dip triangle end into the red, and put a marshmallow on top.

Rumor has it they will stay for quite a few days at room temp.

Next adventure: Reindeer....

Oh and I made these with the extra candy melts. I mean, just for fun :)

Freezer cooking- Meal 4- Chicken Casserole

This is a recipe my mother in law makes all the time, and we all LOVE it! So why not make 4 of them! One for dinner tonight and 3 for the freezer.

Here is the recipe:

3 cups diced cooked chicken
1 medium onion, chopped (I omitted, I hate hate hate onions)
1 cup mayonaise
2 cans French style green beans
1 can cream of mushroom or cream of celery soup
1 cup sour cream
1 medium size jar of pimentos
1 package white and wild rice, cooked according to package
1 can sliced water chesnuts

Combine all. Cook at 350 degrees for 45 minutes

If freezing, simply freeze before cooking.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Ava's room continues

Everything is really done, I just need a baby to go in there! I feel like I spent every waking minute in there a few weeks ago, and now there is nothing left! We are waiting on Matt to finish a project he is doing for in there, but otherwise, it's ready.

Here are some decor pics of new wall decor.

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Latest ETSY sales

Had 2 orders to complete for Thanksgiving, and I did it!

If you need any custom nursery decor, let me know! I am happy to get things done by Christmas if ordered this week!

Freezer cooking- Meal 3- Thanksgiving Pot Pie

This was an easy one!! Thanks to Dad for making me get a giant turkey and having tons of leftovers. I held one of these out for dinner this week too :)

Leftover Turkey
Leftover green bean casserole
One can mixed veggies
2 cans Cream of Chicken with Herbs
3 premade pie crusts

Monday, November 15, 2010

Just another rave

About Shutterfly! We have used them every year since we got married for our Christmas cards. You really can't find a better price, and when you have almost 100 people on your list, you want a bargain! I love sending photo cards, so that the people you don't often see, get to see what you are up to. It's especially great once you have kids, and people can see how much they have grown.

I don't want to give away what design we are using for this years' card, but I will say, it was a tough choice! I went back and forth on about 3 different designs for the card until I finally got Matt to vote and we got it decided. Olivia is featured prominently on the card, imagine that!

Really though, Shutterfly has been our best holiday tradition since getting married. We also get all of our prints there, and gifts for people as well, for Christmas, birthdays, everything! We got mom and dad a photo mug last year with Olivia's first year pictures all over them. They loved them!

Go check out some of our favorite products!
·         holiday cards   
·         photo Christmas cards
·         personalized mugs

Friday, November 12, 2010


Ok no, but I did get 2 awesome packages today! The blankets and such I won- a $300 gift set!! And I got the bag brand new off Ebay for $20 less than retail. Couldn't pass it up! And I got them both today.

I am more than happy for Ava to use Olivia's hand me downs, for most stuff, but it was really nice to win this gift and give her some of her very own baby stuff :)

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Freezer cooking- meal swap!

Tomorrow there are 5 of us getting together to swap freezer meals. So I will have 4 new ones! My contribution has about 25 pounds of dairy, and a good bit of bacon and butter. So we should all be happy :) Except I didn't make any for myself!! Dumb!! But I do have the stuff to make more.

Needless to say, I am about over freezer cooking for the next few days. Maybe Thursday when O is in school. Maybe next week :)

 Based upon this recipe, changes as follows.

Added bacon. Deleted onion. Used random Mexican shredded cheese. Omitted parsley.
Cranberry bread. I have been craving it since I saw cranberries at Publix the other day. I used this Martha Stewart recipe, loosely.

Things I changed:

Used a whole bag of cranberries for 2 loaves, vs one. Would have been crazy tart if I used the whole bag for one loaf. Added cinnamon and a little orange zest.

Though I am burnt out, this was super easy. I will probably make 2 more loaves this week, as I have another bag of cranberries. Rumor has it, Sams' Club has a huge bag for super cheap. So I may well go get one for the freezer, or make my mother in law's amaaaaazing cranberry/apple bake. Mmmmmmmmmmmmm

And yes, that one loaf has already been cut into. I'm just saying. I'm 28 weeks pregnant, and I have wanted this stuff all week! Can't wait til tomorrow am with my coffee....

Monday, November 8, 2010

Freezer cooking- Meal 2- Chicken Noodle Soup

No recipe for this one, as it was just thrown together from what I had! Thanks Nanny for the Tupperware :) When she moved here she thinned down her kitchen stuff, and I got these bowls. Pretty great for this soup!

I guess she really is coming!

 Not now, obviously. But in my giant nesting phase of the last month, I have begun to realize that there is actually going to be a newborn in this house in the next 3 months! Someone asked my mom the other day, "when is the baby due?" and I heard her say "after Christmas". Which for some reason made it seem a little closer than I thought!

 Newborn cloth diapers. Prepped and ready for a tiny new tushie!
Tiny pink newborn size clothes!

0-3 month clothes! All washed and ready. Olivia did a lot of helping put these away. Hence why it took a month.....

Friday, November 5, 2010

Vintage Friday

2 years ago this month!!! Um, was she this small ever??! Oh yeah. Also funny the way 2 years later you look at baby pictures and think how cute and sweet they were. Then you remember that you hadn't slept in 4 months, your house was a wreck, you were taking Zoloft and you spent most of your time holding a napping baby that wouldn't lay down..... :) I love mom-nesia! Thank goodness for it, otherwise no one would ever have more kids!

And something I am working on---- a family tree! I am going to put this in the hallway upstairs outside of the girls' rooms.

Should look something like this. But not. No red leaves or black trunk. I am thinking no leaves, and light brown trunk. It will be on chocolate brown background. I'm going to paint it, cause I just can't see buying the decal for $50 or more. I am excited! Gotta get pictures from the whole fam-damily now! Working on that!

Wednesday, November 3, 2010


Olivia was none too thrilled about dressing up, but we managed to get her in the basics of her costume. She actually did get the concept of Trick or Treating, and didn't even really care about the candy, thank goodness! She did have one breakdown cause she wanted M&Ms, so we let her, and she was very happy for the duration.

Note the lovely face in her pjs that night! She was tiiiiiired