Friday, November 15, 2019

TGIF!

I really feel like I got the bum deal of enjoying the seasons of 2019.  My favorite season (summer) happened during my most tired and biggest part of pregnancy.  And I feel like I wasn't the most fun mom this summer for the kiddo.  Then I gave birth and fall happened in the throes of the first 2 weeks of a baby and then it freaking snowed.  It started on Halloween, melted and a week later more snow fell and we have had some sort of snow action ever since.  I don't think I can handle this winter if it's all like this.  I hate snow.  I hate feeling stuck in the house.  I mean I hang in the house a lot, but it's by choice.  When I feel like I have no choice I get antsy.  Especially because I have a newborn who I have to hide from all of the germy people this winter.  I may go crazy.  And I may have to hide all carbs and chocolate.


My favorite picture from the week:





The high of my week was we survived it? I am so glad that it's Friday.  I'm not enjoying that Adeline has been waking up grunting/need to poop around 430-615.  Like it may take that whole time.  And she may eat once in there but just makes so much noise.  Usually she's not in pain but for those of us wanting to sleep it's annoying.  I suppose we could move her to her own room but it's just so easy to have her next to me.  The problem with this time then being that she has me and the husband up for the day usually about 4:30 with some cat napping involved and then SHE falls asleep while he has to get ready for work and I then have to get up to get the 8 year old ready.  And then takes lovely naps and her mother is caffeinated and wide awake and cannot nap.  And then the cycle continues ha.  Which, this seems like a huge complaint for the high of the week, but when you literally do nothing but stay in a house and only leave to take a kid to school, this is what you get.



Okay, for real the high of the week was last Sunday when my mom, 8 year old and myself went to see a local theater production put on by 6th-8th graders! Made sweeter by the fact that the kid won free tickets to another performance next June!

The low of my week was  see also my high ha.

Meal plan for the week was  
Monday -  Cheesy Chicken Burrito Bowls, grapes, guacamole/chips, roasted broccoli
Tuesday -  We used the leftovers from the burrito bowls and made quesadillas, grapes, roasted sweet potatoes, guacamole/chips
Wednesday -  Roasted Tomato Soup (made with tomatoes from our garden, we made a huge batch and froze it), celery,broccoli, ranch, cheese bread, grapes
Thursday -  Skillet Chili Mac and Cheese, grapes, rolls, broccoli/ranch
Friday - leftovers, grapes, celery/ranch

The best money I spent was on I got another halo fleece swaddle sack in size small and matching dresses for the girls.  The 8 year old is super into matching and wearing shirts that say sister so when I can make it happen, I do! I am going to give them as Christmas gifts because the size for Adeline won't fit until closer until then anyway!

What I’m listening to  old episodes of All the Books, Up and Vanished, and Hell and Gone.

What I’m watching finishing up  the third season of Jamestown and then will be on to mixed-ish or Christmas movies!

What I’m reading:  The Rest of the Story by Sarah Dessen and I HIGHLY recommend it!



My plans for the weekend include MSU vs. UofM football! I will probably make a bean dip for that.  We also have my nephews 10th bday party.  I need to go grocery shopping by myself and I am hoping to vacuum and mop the floor.

What are you watching/reading/listening to?

Thursday, November 14, 2019

Thankful times Ten


I had been toying with the thought of a thankful series and when I saw Lisa post these 10 prompts, it was just the push I needed! 

1) I’m most thankful for my ability to Multi-task.  I will feel lost if I don’t have about 234234 things going on at once.  And if I don’t have options I tend to do nothing.


2) In this moment, the thing I love most about my family is how they love my kids.  They are constantly checking in on them, sending them things, coming to cuddle them, and attempting real and meaningful relationships with them, not just stopping by for a few photos to brag on later.  They know actual information about them and can hold conversations with the 8 year old effortlessly about her interests. 

3) Something that made me smile today was my poor littlest girl had some gas issues but she ended up taking a nap laying stomach down on my arm with her legs dangling in my lap.  We sat snuggled up for over an hour, but it was just sweet.  Toots and poop and all.



4) The best thing I smelled today was the lotion I just put on my hands.  I feel like I am in a constant lotion/hand washing cycle and my hands are suffering!

5) One of the memories I’m most grateful for is introducing my oldest to my grandpa.  He adored her.  I loved my time spent with him and my grandma growing up and even though he was older and less mobile when she was born, he held her, loved on her and it was beautiful.

6) Thank goodness someone taught me how to think for myself and to appreciate learning.  Thanks, mom and dad! My lord did I grow up in a backwards place and am amazed daily by social media how I came out of that so differently than most.

7) The strongest part of my body in this moment is jokingly I answered on Lisa’s post it’s probably my boobs.  They are working over time right now!

8) Even after a rough day, the things I’m most grateful for at work are my employee is pretty cute!



9) I’m so grateful that my legs carry me through the many trips up and down the stairs to do the endless loads of laundry.  If I designed my house, my laundry would be on my main floor.

10) I felt a little burst of energy today when I went to pump and chugged water and hurried up to get all my stuff done before Adeline woke up from a nap! Nothing gets the heart going like trying to get all your stuff done before the baby wakes!



What is something that made you smile today?

Thursday, November 7, 2019

November Goals


I promised myself that I would use this pregnancy as a body reset and start intentionally being healthier and move my body more.  Now that I am almost 5 weeks postpartum and my body has had the initial “just have birth so I lost a ton of weight’ I want to keep at it.  Plus, as soon as my midwife gives me the go ahead I want to start doing some weight lifting and walking on the treadmill this winter.

I am overweight.  When I was pregnant I initially lost about 5/6 pounds in the 1st tri.  Then throughout the pregnancy I gained back to my original weight and when I gave birth I had a weight gain of 9 pounds from my pre-pregnancy weight.  Which is awesome.  I did not restrict myself while pregnant, but my body naturally wants fruits/veggies and doesn’t really do carbs and cheese while pregnant.  So that’s helpful.  But I also didn’t want meats and ate a pretty fruit/veggie/dessert life ha.  I also drink waaaay more water.  So it was a good starting point.

Since I gave birth I’ve lost 25 pounds.  I am sticking right there for the last 3 weeks.  I am not restricting myself because food is marvelous again and I need to eat all the lovely things I hated for the last 9 months.  That being said, I have the worlds largest sweet tooth and especially while nursing.  So I am trying to indulge but also eat smarter.  Hence, why I now have November goals!



Goal 1: Eat 7 or more fruits/veggies servings a day.
Goal 2: After I get okay from the midwife incorporate treadmill walks and lifting.
Goal 3: Finish my book club book.

So far I am kicking butt at goal number 1.  It’s helping that I make scrambled eggs with veggies at least 2 times a week.  And that I have cleaned the fruit/veggies as I bought them and we are eating them as snacks/with every meal more frequently because of this.


Goal 2 I am going to start on (hopefully) after my apt next week.  My very tentative and hopeful plan is to try for a mile of walking on the treadmill 2 or 3 times a week.  But I have a newborn, and life is unpredictable.  So even if I have to wait until Saturday/Sunday to make it happen the week is 7 days long.


Goal 3, I need to finish reading Bury Your Dead and then I will start on it!

What are your goals for November?

Monday, November 4, 2019

What I read in October


October may have been the worst month of my entire reading life.  I abandoned a book because it needed to be returned to the library, and I just couldn’t get it done and I was sad because I really wanted to read it (The Alice Network) and I kept falling asleep when I was attempting to read.  Darn newborns!

I will say I consciously chose to mindlessly scroll the internet instead of reading a lot, but I needed the nonsense.  I do have a ton of books downloaded on my kindle app which I have access to on my phone, so as I’m not as sleepy and feeling disconnected I may start to read some.



The TWO books I did finish, I did enjoy.  I read Winter Storms by Elin Hilderbrand in one afternoon/evening.  I was stuck under a newborn and it was a quick fun read! It was part of her Winter series, that is about the Quinn family on Nantucket.  It wrapped up a few storylines and left open a few others.  If you are looking for a fast read, Christmasy series for the winter months, I’d recommend this one. It’s a very light read and there are 4 in the series.

The second book I read was my grandmother asked me to tell you she’s sorry by Fredrik Backman.  This book is about a young girl whose a bit ‘different’ and her grandmother is her best friend.  They have a secret language and have some crazy adventures.  Then her grandmother does and sends her on another adventure.  There is a lot of about the fairy tale world that her grandmother invented for her and those parts did put me to sleep a bit more than the actual dialogue and plot happening in real time with the characters.  Very cute story though!

I’m not the only one in this house whose reading has slowed a bit.  The 8 year old has been spending a lot of time with her sister instead of reading, but I think the highlights of her October were more Boxcar children books, starting to read the I Survived series, and reading a book about the Disney movie Descendants.  Almost every morning she reads, ‘On the Night you Were Born,’ to her sister or she read aloud from the book she is currently reading.  Another favorite one she likes to read to her is ‘Dream Big Little One,’ by Vashti Harrison.  I love that book too.  She actually requested we google some of the book to learn more!


What did you read in October? What's on deck for November?

Friday, November 1, 2019

TGIF!

We have almost survived our 2nd week alone! Adeline had a bit of a growth spurt this week and I started pumping.  Big milestones around here.  Adeline also took a bottle from my husband twice! This is something that Isla struggled with so we wanted to make sure we kept up on it this time.  Plus, my milk supply is better than it was with her so when I pump, I already have enough for a bottle.  The first time we tried the bottle she did scream at him for about 10-15 minutes and I had been gone at book club.  She did end up taking it after I got back home.  He just had to face her away from him in a sitting position.  So she took 2 ounces and then still nursed with me a bit later.  The next night I had pumped and I froze some, but had about an ounce leftover.  So in the middle of our nightly stock up feedings as I call them, he tried the bottle again and she took it.  We are going to plan on keeping this up, as I am planning on trying to pump once a day and then either freeze it all or save an ounce or two depending on what our plans are.  So far I already have 7 ounces in the freezer and coming from my lack luster pumping last time, I will take this as a win! Especially since I am breastfeeding her on demand 24/7 currently.


My favorite picture from the week:





The high of my week was trick or treating as a family of 4! As the 8 year old said, "it was the best and worst Halloween."  It rain/snowed and the weather was HORRID for trick or treating but it was a fun night.  We went to our local mall to do indoor trick or treating for the first time ever and did that for 20 minutes and then hit up a neighborhood.  Adeline slept the whole time in the mall and then woke up and needed nursing when we hit the neighborhood, so she and I stayed warm and nursed in the car while they did some trick or treating.  Then we headed back towards home and went to some friends/relatives houses.






The low of my week was  that even though Adeline is doing great at sleeping at night she makes so many loud noises/grunts/gurgles as she is trying to pass gas/poop that it keeps us up when we could be sleeping.  And I think it bothers her a bit because she has been napping longer in the morning than she had been.  We have a doctors appt next week and I will mention it, but I really don't think there is much else I can adjust that we aren't already trying.  I really don't want to move her to her room yet, but it may have to happen because of the noises ha!



Meal plan for the week was  
Monday -  Chicken Pot Pie, baked potatoes, and grapes.  The pot pie was a frozen meal from my SIL!
Tuesday -  husband had leftovers, 8 year old had a pbj/carrots, and I went to Olive Garden with book club!
Wednesday -  Stuffed Shells, also from my lovely SIL, carrots, celery, and grapes
Thursday -  leftovers
Friday -  Chili (that I made and froze last month) and grilled cheese!

The best money I spent was on the hands free pumping bra.  I never bought one the first time, and just did a DIY that was easy enough, but this time I splurged because my DIY this time isn't as good of a fit.

What I’m listening to  Christmas music in the car! My kiddo and I would listen all year.  We just don't do the snow!  Also, many many podcasts. :)

What I’m watching working on Season 2 of Jamestown from PBS! Excited to start watching Christmas movies soon with the kiddo.

What I’m reading:  The Summer Wives by Beatriz Williams.  Reading is hard right now.  It makes me sleepy and sometimes I can't be sleepy! But I did read Little Blue Truck this week!

My plans for the weekend include hopefully a Target run.  I need to get the oldest some more gloves and winter boots.  I may order them online, but I would like to look in store.  Depending on how my husband does grocery shopping tonight I may need some grocery items as well.  Also planning on football watching, reading, and being lazy.  Sunday, the oldest and the husband are going to my nephews baptism/out to lunch and the baby and I will chill here.

What are you watching/reading/listening to?

Monday, October 28, 2019

Currently

Reading:  Summer Wives by Beatriz Williams

Loving:  baby snuggles and watching my two kiddos together





Feeling: tired but good.  i feel a lot more relaxed than I did after my first born.   

Anticipating: Halloween! I'm excited for the excitement of my kiddo.



Grateful: that I have two!!!! awesome girls.



Working: on organizing newborn clothes and maternity clothes and getting them sold/donated and out of the house!

Listening: to podcasts.  So far behind on so many of them.

Watching: Southern Charm New Orleans!

Wishing: for a few more weeks of beautiful fall before the cold, crummy winter hits us!

What are you reading and listening to currently?

Friday, October 25, 2019

TGIF!

This was my first week home alone with the baby and I feel like we've done a good job.  We've napped, gotten big sister to school, managed some cleaning/organizing, and I've gotten through a lot of recorded shows that I was waiting to watch until she was here.  I was lucky this week that I only had to do both pick up and drop offs on Monday and Friday.  My mom picked up on Tues, Wed, and Thurs.  She even dropped her off for me on Thursday! The nightly sleep schedule has been good enough that I've been able to pull myself out of bed in the morning and not feel like death to get us out the door.  Hopefully, this all stays the same!


My favorite picture from the week:





The high of my week was watching my big kid interact with her little sister.  She is so patient.  She really wants her to play with her haha! She does get annoyed with the constant crying and last night she said to me, "You are always holding Adeline."  Then she proceeded to climb herself into my empty lap and have me hold her.  She is doing amazing at being a big sister and learning how to share our attention, which is so hard to do after constant attention only on her for 8 years.  It's really helped that my parents have taken her to do fun things by herself a few times since the baby was born.



The low of my week was  every night when I want to fall asleep and that is the time the baby is still cranky.  She pretty much cries/yells for a few hours before bed.  I nurse her, everyone else tries to entertain her, and basically she just needs to pass out but she wants to eat a few more times and let us know she's tired before she passes out.

Meal plan for the week was  
Monday - Stuffed Pepper Casserole that was prepared and delivered by my bff!! It was so delicious and we devoured it.  I need to get the recipe from her because it was a huge hit.
Tuesday -  Chili and Baked Potatoes
Wednesday -  Chicken Stir Fry and yum yum sauce
Thursday -  Turkey Breast, broccoli cheese and rice, corn and cookies that was prepared and delivered by our neighbors! It was also so freaking delicious.  The turkey was from the ones they raise on their farm.  And so was the corn.
Friday -  Steak and baked potatoes

We have been so fortunate to have meals dropped off to us! We've had potato soup (by two different people), Lasagna, Baked Ravioli, Ribs/Day ahead salad, countless desserts,and in our freezer from family we still have two sides (broccoli/rice and cheesy potatoes),  a pan of stuffed shells, a dozen muffins, and a pie! I'm so thankful.  I froze a few meals ahead of time but it is so nice to have diverse dinner options and be able to save our soups for later.

The best money I spent was on I am hoping that the baby k'tan I ordered today will be life changing! I stopped at a friends house today (she gave birth same day as me ha) to try on hers to see about sizing and it seems super easy to get on compared to the moby so I'm hopeful I can get that to work until my ergo or lillebaby is more comfy!

What I’m listening to  podcasts! Enjoying Hell and Gone !

What I’m watching just got myself caught up on Southern Charm and now working my through Southern Charm New Orleans.  After that I am going to work on Jamestown and Hallmark movies!

What I’m reading:  My grandmother told me to tell you she's sorry by Fredrik Backman.  It's taking me forever.  When I'm reading, I'm in it, but it's also making me sleepy, so I have been doing far more internet scrolling than reading!

My plans for the weekend include watching football, attempting to pump for the first time, getting pumpkins/carving them.  And just relaxing.



What are you watching/reading/listening to?

Monday, October 21, 2019

5 Bookish Things I'm Loving Right Now

This is the 4th installment of 5 Bookish Things I'm Loving Right now.  You can find my last post here. 

1.  So the first thing, isn't so much a thing I love, as a thing I read and felt the need to share it.  YA author, Julia Watts was recently uninvited to a teen literary festival because someone on the library planning committee googled her and found out she also writes erotica! WTF?? The library system putting on the festival claims it wants to represent diverse authors and include LBGTQ persons, yet dis invite her because she also writes a different genre? As any rational human being does, I'm sure Ms. Watts isn't about to go on a tangent about her erotica writing when her YA writing is the focus of the festival.  Also, it makes seem like erotica is wrong and no matter what she writes or does she won't be suitable for young adults because of the other writing, which is just wrong! They tried to make it better by inviting her to a standalone event, but I think they are making a huge mistake by not allowing her to participate in the teen lit festival.  And, now I've added one of her recent books to my to-read list.

2.  When I saw this Book Riot post I got super excited! Growing up in the 90s, I was a HUGE fan of Sweet Valley High and Saved by the Bell.  This article compares the two and matches them up with their doppelganger from the other! I felt their matches were on point and it was funny at how the characters matched up so nicely! I enjoyed the Screech / Winston Egbert comparison.  I had almost forgotten about Winston.  I'm sure the similarities have a lot to do with the simple set ups of YA/ teen TV but this trip down memory lane was fun!  My favorite Sweet Valley character was Elizabeth Wakefield and my favorite Saved by the Bell character was Zach Morris.

3. I saw a review for the book Patron Saints of Nothing by Randy Ribay and the cover caught my eye first and then I read what it was about! 


"A powerful coming-of-age story about grief, guilt, and the risks a Filipino-American teenager takes to uncover the truth about his cousin's murder.

Jay Reguero plans to spend the last semester of his senior year playing video games before heading to the University of Michigan in the fall. But when he discovers that his Filipino cousin Jun was murdered as part of President Duterte's war on drugs, and no one in the family wants to talk about what happened, Jay travels to the Philippines to find out the real story.

Hoping to uncover more about Jun and the events that led to his death, Jay is forced to reckon with the many sides of his cousin before he can face the whole horrible truth -- and the part he played in it.

As gripping as it is lyrical, Patron Saints of Nothing is a page-turning portrayal of the struggle to reconcile faith, family, and immigrant identity. "


This sounds like a infusion of present day politics, diversity, coming of age and YA that should appeal to a lot of different audience.  It came out in June, and I will be checking my library for it!

4.  


5. 

My oldest girl reading to my littlest girl!!!! Melts my heart.  There have been many stories shared here so far.  Favorites include Don't Press the Button,  That's Not My Unicorn, and The Going to Bed Book

What bookish things are you loving right now?

Thursday, October 17, 2019

Adeline Elizabeth


My littlest love is here! We have had this sweet girl in our midst for almost two weeks.  She was born after 16 minutes of pushing and about 2 hours of active labor.  Much quicker than her big sister.  I labored mostly in the shower with hot water spraying on my back and leaning against the wall with pressure being put on my back.  I spent a lot more time standing this time and could feel her moving down.  I also felt like pushing sooner and could feel it working so much better.  I did not have any pain medication and did have some Zofran towards the end because it was going so fast that I kept feeling like I was  going to puke.  Thankfully, I did not.



She was 8 pounds 3 ounces and 20 inches long.  Slightly bigger than her bigger sister but she seems so much smaller.  Her head is definitely smaller and I think that affects my overall judgment of size! When we left the hospital she was 8 pounds 2 ounces and at her doc appointment a couple days later she was 7 pounds 15 ounces but my milk had just come in. She was also up to 21 inches. 



She of course had to have a dramatic entrance.  I was in my zone pushing through contractions and I could feel her coming and to me it felt like she must be so close or almost out, and she was.  But then all of a sudden the room filled and people were yelling at me to push and then all of a sudden she was out and blue.  She wasn’t making any sound and there were so many people in the room.  But then she let out a cry and the next thing I heard from the crowd of nurses around her was, “She has red hair!” And boy does she! The shade changes daily but it is red and growing by the day!



After they got her breathing, we were able to do skin to skin for close to almost 2 hours.  She even latched right away, which is something her sister didn’t do either! So that was a relief.  We had my parents bring the very excited big sister that night to meet her and it was the sweetest thing.  It still is the sweetest thing.  My oldest girl is THE BEST.  We are all struggling with some sleep issues at the moment, but when it comes to her sister she is the best.  She wants to hold her, she asks if she missed her, she will do anything if it’s for her Adeline.  And for that, I feel like I’m winning parenting.



We were supposed to stay in the hospital for 2 nights because I was positive for group b strep, but they are changing the protocol on that and we got an on call pediatrician who let us leave shortly after 7pm on Saturday.  It helped that our nurse was my husband’s cousin’s wife and my midwife is my husband’s aunt.  They vouched we were smart enough to seek help if needed.  The first night home was rough and we’ve had some rough patches here and there, mostly dealing with some ridiculous gas issues, things have been good.  I notice I have a lot more patience and feel a hell of a lot better than I did the first time.  Probably, because I’m constantly not worried about my kids nursing habits. 



My husband has been off since the day she was born and he goes back to work next Monday.  I’m kind of scared how we will all get out the door and how we will get through school pick up, but we got this.  And if we don’t, we will call grandma and grandpa!



Tuesday, October 1, 2019

What I Read in September

My September reading total fell back to a 'normal' level of 6 books read.  I just wasn't in a reading mood this month.  I spent way more time scrolling the internet and reading articles than reading books.  My brain wasn't in to it.  Also, I just couldn't handle any books that weren't 'lighter' material, which is odd for me.


The Runaway Midwife by Patricia Harman is the second book I've read by her.  This is not part of her Hope River series, it's a standalone.    It was set on a small island in Lake Erie.  Clara Perry, a midwife, is hit with a lot of life issues at once and runs away under an assumed name and all of her husband's savings to this island to start fresh.  She runs into a few issues, like she left behind her passport and she had to sneak into Canada.  She tells people she is writing a book, but the most she writes is about the different birds she notices around the island.  It's a cute story, with a hint of thriller but very very tame.

Life After Life by Kate Atkinson was a book I had picked up at a used book sale and our book club picked for the October book.  It was a bit on the longer side, but it was fascinating.  Ursula Todd is born and dies on the same day.  This happens over and over again over the span of a lifetime.  It's almost like how a 'choose your own adventure' could turn out, but well written and well developed.

Saint Anything by Sarah Dessen is yet another brilliant young adult novel that I read very quickly.  Sydney's brother Peyton, is currently incarcerated and it has affected her entire life.  But, since she's so good she has become the family after thought.  Until of course she messes up one time and then is front and center in her mom's bulls eye.  I did struggle with the one character that is a friend of her brother's who is a recovering addict/questionable choice maker and her parents just let him hang out with her and put him in charge of her and there is such a creepy vibe from him that I just was like PARENTS, WAKE UP. 

The Library at the Edge of the World by Felicity Hayes- McCoy was a little different than what I thought it was going to be about, but it was still a quick light read.  I thought it would have focused more on the librarian and her travels around the peninsula as a librarian but it was more focused on her personally and the local politics of the small town she grew up in. 

The Simplicity of Cider by Amy Reichert is set in Door County, Wisconsin, which when I stumbled upon it at the library, is the main reason I picked it up.  Plus, it was about life on the orchard making hard cider.  YES, PLEASE.  The book has some 'magical' aspects which reminded me of a Sarah Addison Allen book.  The orchard is 5th generation owned and is struggling.  However, Sanna, is hoping to sell her cider and save the orchard.  There is a lot of family drama involved with a sweet love story.

The Girl Who Chased the Moon by Sarah Addison Allen is set in the town of Mullaby, North Carolina, which is a quirky town where lots of interesting people live and strange happenings are overlooked.  Emily Benedict moves in with her giant grandfather, who she didn't even know existed until the recent death of her mom.  She meets a whole cast of quirky town residents who teach her things about her mother that she never would have believed just months before. 

I'm currently working The Alice Network by Kate Quinn and then I think I'm going back to some more light reads to get me through the early days of a newborn, whom should be making her entrance in the next week!

What did you read in September? What is a book you are currently recommending?