Thursday, June 30, 2011

How many breakfasts have you had?

At church last week I was starving. All morning. The baby must have been going through a growth spurt or something because I could not keep myself full! I tried to prepare for this by having a small bowl of cereal just after waking up and then eating a piece of peanut butter toast on my way to church. This was helpful, but just a few hours later, I was starving again! Jarrod helped me find animal crackers at the church and I was good to go for the 2nd service.
I made the mistake of telling some folks about this.
Now that we're officially "with-child" and everyone knows, it's fair-game conversation topic. People are constantly asking me how I'm feeling. I don't always know how to respond, so I typically tell the truth - polite or not. A few weeks ago, this meant several church-folks knew I was eating like a horse.

Last week at church Jarrod overheard at least 3 people ask me, "How many breakfasts have you had today?" This struck Jarrod as off that so many people knew that I was eating very frequently. (Disclaimer - I'm not eating a lot at each meal, just small little meals all day. It seems to be working for me.) He thought this was funny. And it was, but it brings up a struggle I've been having recently - how do I get enough protein and energy at breakfast that I can make it until 10am at least? I know what foods contain protein and know how to get it, but how to get it in a quick, easy, and out-the-door breakfast is not my specialty. My egg and toast breakfasts have been working really well, but tend to make me rushed in the morning.

So I hit the internet to see what was out there. I was looking for something high protein but not too high calorie that was easy to prepare or warm up and go!

Here's what I have on my list to try:
Baked Oatmeal - I thought this would be a good one to make and cut into squares that I could eat on my way to work. It suggests serving it with milk, but I think it'd be fine without. It has 359 calories and 9 g. of protein but is also packed with fiber and carbs to keep me going throughout the day!
Broccoli Turkey Casserole - 303 calories and 33 g. of protein? Yes, please! I love turkey and broccoli and think this combo would be delicious.
Start Right Strata - Bread makes this casserole even more hearty and at 247 calories and 17 g. of protein, that would be a delicious start to the day!
Potato Egg Bake - I'd replace the eggs and egg-whites for egg beaters because of personal preference, but either way, this looks delicious! The potatoes make it more substantial without adding too many calories. This one has just 233 calories and 20 g. of protein!
French Toast Bake - While not quite as high protein as the others, this delicious casserole is definitely on my list! I am a HUGE French Toast fan and love that I could quickly pop a piece in the microwave and eat it on the go! It has 223 calories and 11 g. of protein.

I typically don't sit down to eat breakfast in the morning. I either eat in the car on my way to work or while I'm blow drying my hair. I enjoy cereal and other sitting-essential meals, but that would require less sleep, sleep I'm not willing to give up. :-)

I'll let you know how these go. I'm hoping to use some time on the 4th of July to give one of these a go!
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Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Pregnancy Update - Week 12

What’s Happening This Week: The most dramatic development this week: Reflexes. Your baby's fingers will soon begin to open and close, his toes will curl, his eye muscles will clench, and his mouth will make sucking movements. In fact, if you prod your abdomen, your baby will squirm in response, although you won't be able to feel it. His intestines, which have grown so fast that they protrude into the umbilical cord, will start to move into his abdominal cavity about now, and his kidneys will begin excreting urine into his bladder. From crown to rump, your baby-to-be is just over two inches long (about the size of a lime) and weighs half an ounce.

This week we had our second doctor's appointment. It was a simple appointment that didn't really require much. We were in and out in about 20 minutes start to finish! I'm definitely up 4 lbs. from my pre-pregnancy weight. The coolest part was getting to hear the baby's heartbeat. The doctor put the Doppler right on my stomach and swish-swish-swish! The baby's heartbeat was immediately heard. The doctor didn't tell us what the heartbeat was, but said that it was very strong! Jarrod, who wasn't sure if he needed to come to the appointment, was so excited he was there for that!
Disclaimer - Jarrod will be at each and every doctor's appointment, if at all possible, because we both want him there. He has a flexible schedule and making it to the appointments hasn't been a problem yet. He did ask if this was an appointment he needed to go to - he just wasn't sure why I was going to the doctor. As soon as I told him it was for the baby, he was completely on board. :-) 
How far along? 12 weeks
Weight gain: 4 lbs. and holding steady. Now that I'm home and not traveling as much, it's easier to eat healthier. That doesn't mean I'm not eating junk, it just means my meals are healthier than they were on the road. ;-)
Stretch marks? Still the ones on my hips. Not too concerned about that - they've come and gone throughout weight loss and gain over the years.
Sleep: I'm sleeping better than I will be, but I'm still getting up 3-4 times a night to go to the bathroom. It's not ideal.
Food cravings: Nothing really, but I am allowing myself to eat things I haven't eaten in years - chicken tenders, lots of ice cream, etc. ;-)
Labor Signs: None.
What I miss: We did VBS this week and I helped Jarrod with the 5th graders. It tested my patience and coming home to a nice glass of wine would be awesome. I'm also really missing feeling skinny.
What I am looking forward to: Feeling the baby kick. Jarrod get excited about it as well this week. He can't wait!
Anxieties: I'm stressing right now about finding out if it's a boy or girl. I am about 60% sure I don't want to know, but flip flop often...
Weekly Wisdom: Nothing this week...
Milestone: I hit my last week of the first trimester!
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Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Nursery Art

One way I kept my mind off of Jarrod being gone two weeks ago was to focus on creating some mood boards and idea boards for the nursery. I went a little nuts on Pinterest and pinned color ideas, fabrics, furniture, and other theme ideas. At the moment, I am loving the bird theme starting with this wall art and a mobile like this one. I love the wall color in this room and this room. For accent colors, I love yellow and grey (like in this mood board). I'd add some green, either mint or a deeper green like in the fabrics below.

I'm looking at fabrics rather than bedding because I'm pretty confident in my sewing skills and think my mother in law, sister in law, and I can make some nice bedding at a much more reasonable price than we could pay - plus, it'd be something that I love!

And we plan to make the little birdies for the wall art and mobile. And we can make accent pillows, curtains, etc. I plan on making curtains like Sherry did either the no sew or the sewing machine version and hanging them high and wide.

Another thing that's important to me for the nursery is artful quotes. I had a few quotes bouncing around in my head and wanted to make them into pretty frames for the walls.

I don't know if these are the final versions or not, but I think we'll have three simple white frames matted and hung together in a cluster. I already have a wall picked out and think we'll go with frames like these from IKEA.

I think for furniture I'm leaning towards clean lines and white wood for the crib, dresser/changing table, and shelving. I'd love an upholstered rocker as well, so we'll have to see if we can find one at a good price that can be reupholstered. Also, does anyone want to reupholster a rocker for me? ;-)

Of course I've shared none of this with my husband. He knows I have ideas and has checked out some of the things on pinterest, but that's the extent of our discussions. None of this is set in stone (with the exception of the rocker, I've been dreaming of that for decades!) and we'll definitely make decisions together. It's just been fun to think about how I want this new room to look and what message I want it to send. Calm, bright, peaceful, colorful, and gender neutral. ;-)
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Biggest Question

One of the first questions people ask when we tell them we're pregnant is whether it's a boy or girl. Years ago, this wasn't an issue. Our parents didn't find out because the technology wasn't available. Now that it is, I can count on one hand the people I know who DIDN'T find out. Out of the dozens of friends who have had children over the past few years, nearly all of them found out by 18-20 weeks.

I feel fairly strongly about finding out the gender and most people seem surprised that I don't want to know. I'm an incredible planner by nature and people assume I'd want to plan everything before the baby is born. I am reserving the right to change my mind, but as of today, I don't want to know. If it comes down to seeing the ultrasound screen or not, I'll most definitely find out. Although I think that's giving me too much credit - those ultrasounds are difficult to read!

There are several logical reasons why I don't want to find out. The first being, I don't see the point. The room will be gender neutral regardless. God willing, this won't be our last baby and we'll want something ready for the next one. Strollers, car seats, highchairs, etc. will all be gender neutral as well. Necessary clothing will be gender neutral and all other clothing can be purchased post-birth. I don't see why a closet full of every size to 3T of pink dresses is essential when I'm only 6 months pregnant. I am confident we'll still be able to shop after the baby is born. I'm also pretty confident that the people that love us will continue to give us gender specific clothing well after the baby is here. In fact, I'm counting on hand-me-downs!

There are very few surprises left in life. We are an instant-gratification driven society. Myself most definitely included. But this is a surprise that can wait.

This is by no means a judgment on anyone who chooses to find out the sex of the baby before birth. I've heard that it not only helps with planning, but also bonding with the baby. This makes perfect sense to me and something I'm definitely taking into consideration. The ultrasound is the only tricky business. I'd love to have a 3D ultrasound later in our pregnancy. Most of the packages include gender determination or confirmation. I'm sure that I'd be able to tell them not to tell us, but just the fact that it's standard protocol makes me feel like an alien.

Of course, Jarrod wants to find out. However, no one has been able to give me a good reason why we should find out early - Jarrod included. I'd love for you all to weigh in. Did you find out? Should we? ;-)
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Monday, June 20, 2011

Pregnancy Update - Week 11

Yes, I'm wearing the same shirt as last week. It wasn't on purpose...

What’s Happening This Week: Your baby, just over 1 1/2 inches long and about the size of a fig, is now almost fully formed. Her hands will soon open and close into fists, tiny tooth buds are beginning to appear under her gums, and some of her bones are beginning to harden. She's already busy kicking and stretching, and her tiny movements are so effortless they look like water ballet. These movements will become more frequent as her body grows and becomes more developed and functional. You won't feel your baby's acrobatics for another month or two -- nor will you notice the hiccupping that may be happening now that her diaphragm is forming.

How far along?  11 weeks
Weight gain: 4 lbs. But I've seriously gotten huge!
Stretch marks? Some on the sides of my hips. I'm still using cocoa butter every night and morning, though!
Sleep: Jarrod and I were both traveling this week so sleep wasn't awesome. I was missing Jarrod and sleeping in strange hotel rooms.
Best moment this past week: Seeing Jarrod after 11 days apart! 
Movement: None
Food cravings: Everything. I'm hungry about every 45 minutes. I'm doing my best to eat high protein and healthy, but donuts in the break room really call to me.
Labor Signs: None.
What I miss: Buttoning my pants. I'd lost so much weight before I got pregnant, I was used to feeling good about my body. This week my pants started really getting tight - even in the morning. I know it's natural, but it's depressing and hurts my emotions. 
What I am looking forward to: Feeling the baby kick!
Anxieties: Finding out if it's a boy or a girl. Right now I don't want to know, but I don't know if that's the right decision or not...
Weekly Wisdom: Even though you know everything is going to change, you really have no idea.
Milestone: Nothing really yet - almost to the 2nd trimester!
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Sunday, June 19, 2011

I married up

I know it's typically men that say about their wives that they "married up" but in our relationship, I'm the one who married out of her league. It's not a put down - I think I'm pretty great - I just married an incredible man.

Because of our new (and totally awesome!) jobs, Jarrod and I spent the past two weeks traveling - separately. I left two weeks ago on Sunday afternoon for Annual Conference in Waco. I was there until Wednesday evening. Jarrod left Monday afternoon, the day before I got home, for a 9 day youth choir tour in Colorado. After a short visit home and a few days alone, I left for a rapid-fire mission trip center visitation on Monday morning. Jarrod returned home on Tuesday afternoon and I returned home this afternoon. Needless to day, I missed my husband. We've not spent that amount of time apart since we got married.

Being apart definitely made me appreciate Jarrod more. Sure he does thing that annoy me - he doesn't clean up after himself or check things off his to-do list like I'd like, but my life is better with him in it. I thought I'd really enjoy the empty house and time alone, but I was just lonely and felt like something was missing. (the 20-something feminist in me HATES that feeling!) I didn't have anyone making me laugh, telling me animated stories, or sharing deep theological moments with. As my belly grows even bigger, I am reminded of how important my relationship with Jarrod is and how thankful I am that I married a man that I really enjoy.

I had no idea married life could be this sweet. I married a man that takes care of me while still allowing me to be fiercely independent. He listens to be complain but then helps me forget it and move on. He reminds me of the important things in life and encourages me to focus on life's sweeter pleasures. Jarrod calms me down, which is a challenge, and brings me a lot of peace. He loves me in a sweet, but not sappy way. He does what needs to be done, even if that means driving to Shreveport only to decorate posters, hang signs, wake up early, and help me work. He understands ministry and working together as a family.

More than anything, he can't wait to hold our baby for the first time. It's overwhelming to think about how different our lives will be next Father's Day. I am thankful that while I'm terrified about the changes - being a parent, raising a child - I have absolutely no fear about who I'm on the journey with. I definitely married up and while Jarrod's not a father quite yet (and will probably never read this!) I am so thankful for him this Father's Day.
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Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Pregnancy Update - Week 10

What’s Happening This Week: Although he's barely the size of a kumquat -- a little over an inch or so long, crown to bottom -- and weighs less than a quarter of an ounce, your baby now has completed the most critical portion of his development. This is the beginning of the so-called fetal period, a time when the tissues and organs in his body rapidly grow and mature. If you could take a peek inside your womb, you'd spot minute details, like tiny nails forming on fingers and toes (no more webbing) and peach-fuzz hair beginning to grow on tender skin.

How far along?  10 weeks
Weight gain: 4 pounds. Yeah, that's 3 pounds in one week. My nausea went away and I started feeling hungry ALL THE TIME! 
Stretch marks? Just a bit on my hips. I'm sure they are coming...I can feel my skin stretching everyday! 
Sleep: I wish I could sleep more. Life's been busy and I'm tired all the time. I'm sleeping well at night, just getting up to go to the bathroom several times. 
Best moment this past week: On Wednesday of this week, at 10 weeks exactly, my nausea just disappeared. I still have moments of being overly full or uncomfortable, but the nausea seems to be gone. Hopefully it's for good! I'm eating like crazy now, which is nice, but challenging too. I'm trying to be good.
Movement: None
Food cravings: Basically everything. I may have eaten an entire roll of cookie dough this week. Don't worry, it was pasteurized. Lots of sweet things - Mike & Ike's, cookies, etc. Now that I can eat more than toast, I'm definitely doing it!
Labor Signs: None.
What I miss: Wine. Cookie dough was a good substitute, though! 
What I am looking forward to: Feeling the baby move around. I can't wait for that. I also think it will help things get more real for Jarrod.
Anxieties: I'm worried about the DFW 3-day for the Cure. Obviously I want to walk all 60 miles. I'm a competitive person. But I understand that at 31 weeks pregnant, I might not be able to do much. I'm hopeful I can do a lot, but we'll see. I'm training hard! 
Weekly Wisdom: Sleep now while you can!
Milestone: I don't know... first 11 days without my husband? With us both traveling so much from work, we're in the midst of 11 days apart. It's not fun at all.
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Sunday, June 12, 2011

Dreaming of changes

I've mentioned before, there are many things I'd like to change about our new house. However, we didn't purchase it, so making big (and expensive!) changes aren't likely. I did want to start a list of things I'd change if we could and things we might just change regardless.

Not gonna happen:
New flooring throughout - the cheap carpet is stained and incredibly worn in the main living areas and bedrooms. The kitchen and bathrooms have awful linoleum that is also stained. It's unfortunate because the flooring was ugly to begin with and just wasn't taken care of.
Pergola or covering on back porch - We have an awesome cement slab back porch that is perfect for the barbecue and seating. However, it gets sun for most of the day and is very hot. A nice covering would be excellent.
Kitchen remodel - Jarrod has dreams of moving counter tops, appliances, and doors. I don't know what I'd do, but I know I'd like the kitchen to be a more efficient use of space. Right now we could dance in it, but don't have enough counter top space. Not very effective for a kitchen. 
Replacing all the hardware - As with many homes, all of the hardware in the house is brass. Doorknobs, hinges, and drawer pulls would all need to be changed out. It would take forever and I doubt I could talk Jarrod into it being worthwhile. But I think about it all the time.

Would be awesome:
Paint - Painting a few rooms is going to happen regardless. However, I'd love to paint the whole house. Every wall is builder's white. Not even beige. I'd love to do the living room/hallways/kitchen a warmer beige color. When I said this to my brother-in-law he said, "That's a lot of work!" Sure it is, but I won't be doing it - I'm planning on playing the pregnancy card as often as possible.
Light fixtures - We've already changed out some fixtures, but I have dreams for more. The florescent lighting in the kitchen and generic builder fixtures in the nursery and office must go. I'll definitely be changing out the nursery fixture at some point. I'm thinking about an urban yet sparkly chandelier-type fixture. Something modern, simple, and sparkly. And gender neutral.
Vertical blinds & dining light fixture are already gone. Florescent light needs to go!
Replace mini-blinds - I'd love to replace the cheap mini-blinds with something a little more substantial and less cheap-looking. Nothing super fancy, just some wood-substitute plantation shades. I'd only do the standard windows so we could take them with us when we move. One of the first things I did after moving in was removing the vertical blinds from the kitchen doors. It made a HUGE difference!

Of course the first and most pressing house transformation will be in the "third bedroom". I want to paint, change the light fixture, make and hang curtains, buy furniture, and make bedding. It'll be a lot of work, but I already have some awesome ideas. You can check out my thought process on Pinterest. I've started a few mood boards and art, but I'll share that later on as it continues to transform.
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A few pregnancy thoughts

We announced our pregnancy to our closest Louisiana friends the week before we moved. I was only 6 weeks pregnant, but most of our friends knew about the miscarriage and we wanted to share with them what we were going through. I don't know that we would have told folks so early if we weren't leaving. We didn't make it public knowledge until we hit 9 weeks and had seen a strong heartbeat. That week we announced it on facebook, told our coworkers and bosses, and it suddenly became public knowledge. On paper, we are doing everything all at once. Finding jobs, getting pregnant, and that order. Obviously everyone has opinions about this and makes them known from time to time.

In the beginning I would try to awkwardly address the facts, even if they weren't brought up -
  • yes, we are doing everything all at once.
  • yes, things are a little chaotic.
  • no, I don't know that I would have planned to be 6 weeks pregnant while moving, but this baby was absolutely planned. 
Yes, I make things more awkward than they need to be. Not just this, but things in general. Call it my spiritual gift. ;-) I address the elephant in the room before it gets awkward. I'm actually attempting to make things LESS awkward, but that usually doesn't work. Anyway, I'm completely comfortable with our life. It's chaotic, but we couldn't be more thrilled. I'd rather be 6 weeks pregnant and move than 6 months...or have a 6 month old! But more than anything, this baby was planned.

I've heard that with pregnancy and babies, people lose their filter. I am fully prepared for that. Unfortunately, as a pregnant woman, I've lost my ability to remain in control of my emotions. Call it mood-swings or call it irritability, but normally I'm very polite and now I speak my mind.

For those who think we wasted no time getting pregnant after moving to Dallas I have a couple of things to say:
  1. Obviously we were pregnant before we left. 
  2. We were actually pregnant before we ever started looking to move back to Dallas. That pregnancy wasn't viable. 
  3. We're 29, have been married for 2 years, and love children. 
  4. It's none of your business.
Of course the inappropriate comments pale in comparison to the incredible outpouring of support we've received. Some of my favorite responses have been: "You with a baby bump will be the cutest thing ever!" and "Your baby's feet will never touch the ground!" People are thrilled. But even more important than that, Jarrod and I are thrilled. Nervous, excited, overwhelmed, scared, and in denial of how much our life is going to change. 
Many people have encouraged us by telling us that we will make great parents. I know that we'll do the best we can and I know that we are as ready as we'll ever be. More than that, we've had years of watching some incredible parents raise gorgeous children. There are more than a handful of families that I've had the pleasure of intimately watching raise their children. They've welcomed me into their family and I have been blessed to learn from them. If Jarrod and I can be half the parents that these friends are, we'll raise excellent children. 

Furthermore, there are so many people that are going to love our children. I don't know if I've mentioned it here or not, but my baby sister is getting married. Her boyfriend proposed last week and we couldn't be more thrilled! He is a wonderful guy and makes Courtney very happy. He comes from a freaking awesome family - he's Renee's brother! You remember Renee - we met our freshman year at SMU, went to Perkins at the same time, she introduced me to Jarrod, and we walked 60 miles together in Atlanta. She's one of my best friends in the whole world and I'm so excited she'll be my sister's sister-in-law! Can you even imagine anything better than your best friend's brother marrying your sister? I can't. Courtney's kids will legitimately call Renee "Aunt Renee." Our kids will call her "Aunt Renee" regardless. They might be confused about who they are literally related to, but their family will expand far beyond blood or marriage.  

This post has been all over the place. The bottom line is that I can't imagine why anyone would question our desire to have a baby and our baby will be one of the most loved babies on the planet. 

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Friday, June 10, 2011

A break from the normal

This post is not about food, pregnancy, or making our house a home. I want to take a minute to write about something that is very important to me and to our family: The United Methodist Church. My husband and I have both served in ministry of various capacities in the UMC for many years. Together we have 3 degrees from Methodist schools including two seminary degrees. I am a lifelong member of the UMC and feel very strongly about the Wesleyan tradition.

Sadly, the United Methodist Church has been in severe decline over the past several decades. This hasn't hit me nearly as hard until this Annual Conference. I sit with my round belly wondering if my children will grow up in the Methodist Church. If they will know church camp, the open table, inclusive grace, and have their hearts strangely warmed. I fear that if things do not change, they won't.

Last night I had the pleasure of joining together with a group of youth leaders in our conference. We had spent the previous several days together sharing meals, laughter, and sessions. However, last night was different. They put together a beautiful worship service in the garden of our hotel. It started at 10:45pm and I was exhausted and swollen. However, there is no where else I needed to be. These young people planned music, a message, an awards ceremony, and prayer. They honored their peers and adults with silly, serious, and meaningful awards. I was inspired and renewed. These young people are leaders in their churches, districts, conference, and the greater United Methodist Church. If we support them, they can initiate change within our denomination. We are on the cusp of an energizing revival as a denomination, if we are open to change.

It was moving to sit listening to beautiful music and preaching from teens while at the same time acknowledging my ever growing belly - a sign that life is growing within me. Someday, God-willing, this little fetus will be singing, preaching, playing the guitar,  or praying with peers in a vibrant and energetic Methodist Church.

The fact that Jarrod and I are becoming parents hits me at different times. We are on a journey towards parenthood. We are learning and growing into parents as our Beignet is developing fingernails, eyelids, and joints. We are dreaming of what our little one will do - play an instrument, be a soccer star, act, sing, love math. Most of all, I'm dreaming of our little one learning about God, grace, and unconditional love through the United Methodist Church. Because of some incredible students, I believe this is a strong possibility.
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Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Pregnancy Update - Week 9

What’s Happening This Week:Your new resident is nearly an inch long — about the size of a grape — and weighs just a fraction of an ounce. She's starting to look more and more human. Her essential body parts are accounted for, though they'll go through plenty of fine-tuning in the coming months. Other changes abound: Your baby's heart finishes dividing into four chambers, and the valves start to form — as do her tiny teeth. The embryonic "tail" is completely gone. Your baby's organs, muscles, and nerves are kicking into gear. The external sex organs are there but won't be distinguishable as male or female for another few weeks. Her eyes are fully formed, but her eyelids are fused shut and won't open until 27 weeks. She has tiny earlobes, and her mouth, nose, and nostrils are more distinct. The placenta is developed enough now to take over most of the critical job of producing hormones. Now that your baby's basic physiology is in place, she's poised for rapid weight gain.

This week (9w2d) Jarrod finally admitted that I am looking a "wee bit rounder". I've asked him for weeks, as I KNOW I'm getting "rounder" but he's always said no. Finally the other night, I asked and he admitted to not knowing the correct answer! :-) I told him that the truth is always a good answer.

How far along?  9 weeks
Weight gain: 1 pound. 
Stretch marks? A little bit but still applying cocoa butter every morning and evening, but I imagine I'll get them on my hips first - I started with them there.
Sleep: Pretty decent and as much as possible. Still going to the bathroom at least once in the middle of the night. I know that'll just get worse! 
Best moment this past week: Telling people was awesome. People are so thrilled for us. Some ladies in my office have taken to calling the baby "Princess Tater Tot" which I just adore. 
Movement: None
Food cravings: Caramel Frappuccinos and Very Berry Coffee Cake. After graving frappuccinos for a week or more, on a walk the other day I thought about Starbucks coffee cake. I couldn't get it out of my mind and everything else I thought about for breakfast sounded terrible. So I stopped at Starbucks on my way to work. The combination of cravings and nausea doesn't go well because if I crave something, everything else sounds repulsive until I eat that one something.  
Labor Signs: None.
What I miss: Energy. I'm dragging these days.
What I am looking forward to: Getting the nursery started. I already have ideas for a rocker, crib, bedding, paint, etc. 
Anxieties: I imagine I'm always going to worry that the baby isn't healthy. That is a scary thought.
Weekly Wisdom: Don't worry about weight until our last baby is in pre-K. :-)
Milestone: I tried on a skirt and it didn't come close to fitting. I know I'm barely in a place to even discuss this, but things officially don't fit! 
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Friday, June 3, 2011

Memorial Day Family Gathering

Jarrod and I decided to begin our time in Dallas right by having his family over for Memorial Day. It was an awesome time to celebrate our baby news, see our family, show off our new home, and an excuse for me to take pictures!

Ethan bossing people around. 

A serious a pictures of Carter running around like a super hero!

 Playing with Uncle Will!
 I didn't get a picture of the appetizers or the chicken fajitas that Jarrod grilled, but I did get some photos of our incredible dessert spread!

 Lunch is SO funny!
 Uncle Jarrod got Carter's nose!
 Uncle Jarrod looks silly...
 Jarrod found a quiet part of the living room to enjoy his dessert and a little TV.
It was an awesome Monday with family. I'm so looking forward to many more holidays in Dallas!
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Thursday, June 2, 2011

May Goals Update

I'm a few days late on my monthly update - things have been a little crazy lately! But that doesn't mean we've slacked on our goals...mostly. ;-)It's been over a month since our last goals update and I'm thrilled to share some new updates with you.

To read a recap of what our 2011 goals are, please read my original postJanuary's updateFebruary's update, March's update, or April's update.
And here's how we're doing:
  •  Last month I told you that I'd lost 9.2 lbs since January 1, 2011 and was 2.6 lbs BELOW my goal weight. Obviously things have changed now, due to my "condition." However, I'm still monitoring my weight and hope to keep my pregnancy weight in a healthy range. So far I have gained 1 pound and am 9 weeks pregnant. I'll continue to keep you posted because you hold me accountable! 
  • Since January 1, 2011 I have walked 142 days. That's 142 days out of 153. This means I'm walking an average of 92.8% of days and to meet my goal I need to maintain an average of 82% of days! I intentionally set this goal to be days walked vs. miles walked, knowing that pregnancy would slow me down some. The move have also been challenging, but I've gotten into a 6am routine and hope to keep it up as long as possible. 
  • Since January 1, 2011 we have visited  family and had more family visit us. In January, Jarrod and I visited our dear friends Renee and Mike in Atlanta. In February, Aunt Pam and Uncle Marco visited us from Phoenix. Jarrod and I went to Dallas once in March and once in April and were able to spend great time with family. My dad also visited in March from New Jersey. When we made this goal, we were hopeful that a move to Dallas and a baby were in our 2011 future. We are thrilled to have both happen so quickly and have definitely made 2011 the year of family! I'm also excited that in July Jarrod and I will be flying to New Jersey to visit with my family for a cousin's wedding. Yay! 
  • Since January 1, 2011 we have paid off $15,550 in debt. We are just now getting back on track with our debt snowball. We have stuck religiously to our budget in the midst of the chaos of moving. We're going to begin budgeting for childbirth and baby expenses while also paying off debt at an astounding rate. I cannot wait to stand in the lobby of Financial Peace Plaza with a 6 month old baby and scream that we're debt free! 
  • Since January 1, 2011 Jarrod has taken 9 yoga classes. He got caught up in work and other things and yoga slipped down in his priorities. I'm doing my best to encourage him to continue or find something new in Dallas. We're going to go to a new walking park tonight with the dog. Hopefully we can make that more of a regular occurrence. 
Thanks for holding me accountable!

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We're Pregnant - the whole story

If you are of the male persuasion or don't care about the details of my cycle and peeing on a stick, skip this post!
Rewind a little bit with me to January. I was a few days late and decided I should take a test. While Jarrod and I weren't officially trying, we weren't NOT trying either. And we were pregnant! It took us both by such surprise and took a few days to get over the shock. We found out on Monday and by Wednesday, we were thrilled. By the following week, I was bleeding heavily and we discovered that my progesterone was too low to make the pregnancy viable. I wasn't sure if it was going to be a consistent problem or if it was because I had just gotten off the pill. Regardless, we were crushed.

The weeks surrounding that pregnancy were a blur. We only knew we were pregnant for about 7 days, but those days confirmed that having a baby was what we wanted. Definitely. No questions asked. We waited one full cycle before officially starting to try to have a baby.

I was scheduled to start my period on Wednesday, April 27th. I started taking the cheap pregnancy tests on the 26th. Evidently the cheap pregnancy tests don't detect hCG in a 9 month pregnant woman. I took probably 10 tests over the next 4 days. Finally on Sunday, May 1st, I stopped at Walgreens on my way home from church in the evening, having just walked 8 miles, and bought a 3-pack of pregnancy tests. When I got home, I tested immediately knowing that I'd probably retest the next morning when the concentration of hCG would be higher.

Actually, I took the test and hopped in the shower. I seriously assumed that I was basically wasting a test. But, halfway through the shower, I hopped out just to see if there was one line or two. Two!

After finishing my shower, I thought about how I was going to tell Jarrod. He was still at the church. He knew I'd been obsessively testing with the cheap tests, but he didn't know I'd gotten the big guns. And while I know my body and knew that the odds of me randomly being 5 days late was pretty slim, he wasn't nearly as confident. So I snapped a few pictures with my new camera.

I'd received my awesome Canon Rebel SXi just a few days before and was on fire taking pictures of just about everything. Once Jarrod got home from church I grabbed him and sat him on the couch to show him some pictures. I showed him pictures from lunch and pictures of the dog. The last picture on the roll was a positive test. I love that the tests that I got have the key right on them. One line - not pregnant. Two lines - pregnant. Jarrod started smiling really big and saying, "Really!? Really!?!?"

Yes! We're having a baby!

It's another reason why this blog is called What's Cookin' with the Johnstons. We're cooking in the kitchen and I'm cooking a baby!
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Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Yet ANOTHER important announcement!

After announcing that we were moving and our big new jobs, it's hard to imagine another big announcement coming from the Johnstons.
That's right... we're expecting a baby! On or around January 4, 2012!
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