Monday, January 30, 2012

Meal Plan: 1/29/2012 - 2/4/2012

Sunday: Baked chicken nuggets with macaroni & cheese and frozen veggies
Monday: Veggie pesto pizza
Tuesday: Out (Baby Girl has her first swimming lessons!)
Wednesday: Slow Cooker Pulled Pork Tacos
Thursday: Smoked Sausage Pierogi Bake
Friday: Salsafied Chicken
Saturday: Either quesadillas from pork taco meat or out for a friend's birthday

Sunday, January 29, 2012

Two and a half--the short version

I had hoped to write a beautiful, glowing post today to honor Baby Girl turning two and a half. As of right now, though, I don't have much positive to say about anything. It has been a trying afternoon, complete with a very short nap, two pee accidents (when she's had none in weeks), a bad attitude because she's tired, refusal to let me take any pictures, and then topped off with a very, very bad reflux day for me.

I'm now laying in bed while The Hubby cooks dinner (after asking many questions...if I could stand up straight, I would just cook it myself). Hoping tomorrow is a better day for us all.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Our adventure

Yesterday we picked up Baby Girl from the sitter at our normal time and began the trek home.  We exited the freeway like normal, drove down one street, then turned onto another and found that the first traffic light we got to was out.  This was still far enough from our house that we didn't think it would affect us.  There were policemen there directing traffic, which meant we waited longer at the intersection than we otherwise would have, but also meant that people had to stop.  The electric company was working in the right-hand lane just past the traffic light.  We got to the next light, which was also out.*  The Hubby and I began to wonder if this would affect our neighborhood.  We turned into our neighborhood a bit further down the road, but looked ahead and saw the next traffic light was functioning, which made us think that things would be fine.

At this point, it was just before 5:30.  It was light enough out that it was plausible that people wouldn't have lights on in their houses and the street lights wouldn't be on yet, so we didn't have much of an indication of whether our electricity was on.  We still thought that the outage was far enough from our house that we'd be okay.  We turned on the last street before we got to ours and saw someone parking their car in the driveway.  Again, totally normal around our neighborhood, but it made The Hubby and I start to wonder if perhaps the electric garage door opener wasn't working.

We rounded the corner and pulled into our driveway.  Garage door wasn't moving.  Crap.  The Hubby hopped out and opened the door manually so we could pull the car in.  Both of us started thinking about the things we needed to do so we could function without electricity.  He started pulling out candles and I started thinking about what would need to happen with dinner.  We'd planned on just reheating leftovers in the microwave, but it's hard to do that without electricity.  Baby Girl was running around like a crazy person and didn't understand why we were cranky.  I sat her down and told her she needed to entertain herself for a minute and she agreed to go color, so I got her set up on her table with some paper and crayons.

I was able to use The Hubby's iPhone and check the electric company's website to see if they had individual outages listed since we still had no idea how long to expect the outage to last.  Nope--just a count of the outages across the counties they serve.  And then I thought I'd submit an outage, but that portion of the site didn't seem to be working.  Thanks for the help, electric company.

So now we have to prepare as if we won't have electricity all night.  We start panicking thinking about Baby Girl's bedtime.  We consider our dinner options--go out or stay in and don't spend money (a goal we've had recently).  The Hubby suggested that he could grill up some hot dogs and just have some pretzels or tortilla chips with them.  I started thinking--if the grill has gas...and the grill also has a side burner that's never been used...maybe we could cook a whole meal out there.  Thank goodness it was still over 40 degrees outside and not raining.  I planned out what needed to be pulled from the fridge so I wouldn't let the cold air out and got out the leftover brats, the hot dogs, cheese, ketchup, milk, butter, and a few other things.  We got a box of Pasta Roni and The Hubby fixed that on the side burner while he reheated the brats, cooked the dogs, and reheated the veggies we'd had with the brats on the grill.

We had our picnic in the living room on Baby Girl's art table, which I could tell she really enjoyed.  As The Hubby and I were finishing up (it was about 6:30 by this time), we heard something.  The furnace!  Woo!  Everything in our house started to function again and Baby Girl said excitedly, "now we can turn on the TV!"  We told her that we weren't going to do that--we were going to spend the rest of the evening like we didn't have electricity.  We read books by flashlight, colored some more, and then did bedtime mostly like normal (I wasn't going to try to put her to bed without her nightlight and wave machine if I didn't have to!).

It was really stressful trying to figure out what we were going to do if the electricity was out for an extended period, but it made me really grateful for lots of things last night: good weather, a nice grill, The Hubby and me working well together, Baby Girl's patience, The Hubby doing some cleaning in the basement so I could get to our overstock shelves, and the ability to interact without a TV on.  We'd actually recently been waiting to turn the TV on until after dinner anyway, but seeing Baby Girl's reaction makes me even more conscious of wanting to spend more time with it off when she's awake.  Yes, it means that The Hubby and I don't get our half hour break before her bedtime while she watches Little Einsteins to wind down, but I think that will be okay for the next few months.

*Why the hell don't people get that when the lights are out they should treat the intersection as a 4-way stop? I don't care that one street is fairly busy (speed limit is 40 mph) and the other is just entrances to a couple of subdivisions.  STOP.

Monday, January 23, 2012

26 Weeks

There are conflicting answers about when the 3rd trimester begins, but based on the way I'm feeling, I'm going to say I'm still solidly in the 2nd trimester.  I think of the 3rd trimester as being 28 weeks, but know that mathematically that wouldn't be true if you're pregnant for 40 weeks.  The real update for this week, though, is that we're just cruising along with the status quo.

I did compare my belly shot from this time to the one from last time and I think my belly at 25.5 weeks looks similar to my belly a little closer to 30 weeks last time.  Of course, I started out this pregnancy about 30 pounds heavier, too, and am nearing the weight I was at when I delivered DD.

How am I feeling? Physically, I'm doing better.  My acid issues have been reduced by the twice daily Zantac and avoiding acidic foods and drinks.  It makes me sad not to be able to drink pop, orange juice, and not to be able to eat oranges and tomato-based foods, but if it makes me feel better, I'll do it.  I did make a dish last week (and have eaten it 3 times since then in the form of leftovers) that had a tomato sauce, but had a good amount of cream cheese and sour cream in it that didn't make me feel horrible, so that was encouraging.  I also need to really watch myself to make sure I don't overeat.

Weight thoughts: Because I've been more aware of my tendency to overeat, my weight leveled off some.  I don't think I'll have a month with no gain like I had originally hoped, but it shouldn't be the ridiculous amount of gain that I had the last couple of months.  My digestive system has...ummm...slowed down recently.  I think if I were more...regular....I might be able to maintain my weight better.

Doctor appointments?  Wednesday, February 1st for my glucose screening test.

Movement? This little guy is a mover.  It varies between punches and kicks and rolls and turns.  I still have no idea what his positioning is in there, especially since I'm getting sharp jabs on both sides of my abdomen at once.  I'd guess he's transverse, but am hoping my doctor will be able to tell at our next appointment.

Baby preparation? Well, the nursery has been un-pinked and Baby Girl's clothes are all now in her room (and packed in tubs).  We went through the teeny baby clothes and pulled out gender-neutral stuff.  There wasn't much, honestly.  Over our long weekend Baby Girl decided to make some art for the nursery, so we bought some frames and hung it up.  I love it.  :)  A friend is going to give me some boy clothes at some point, but not sure what we will find it.  I think both of her boys were August babies, so not sure what seasons we'll have in what sizes.  I'm just really grateful, though!!

Here's the art that Baby Girl created for her little brother (I added this photo after Cassie's comment, so don't think she's crazy!):

Meal Plan 1/22/12 - 1/28/12

We did really well with cooking most nights last week, save some Chinese on Monday night and going out with our families on Saturday and Sunday nights (which means we didn't have to pay...score!).  So it may sound like we didn't do that well after all...but I blame Baby Boy for the Chinese and how were we going to pass up going out with our parents?  I did end up with some chicken leftovers in the fridge, though, and will cook it up tonight so we have cooked chicken for meals this week.  I also have book club on Wednesday night, so I wanted that to be something very simple.

Sunday: Out with my parents
Monday: Leftovers from last week (brats & tater tots and leftover pasta from Saturday)
Tuesday: Quesadillas
Wednesday: Pizza with a pesto sauce (chicken, mushrooms, peppers)
Thursday: Cream of potato & broccoli soup with turkey BLTs (soup recipe will be posted later)
Friday: Salsafied Chicken
Saturday: Chicken Fried Rice

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Meal Plan 1/15/12 - 1/21/12

I'm enjoying a nice quiet weekend at home with my two favorite people.  The best part?  We get a bonus day tomorrow!  I've been strangely productive (a post coming on that later) and yet have felt like I've been lazy.  It's been blissful.  I'm going to pick up some supplies to do some baking with Baby Girl when I hit the grocery in a few minutes--we'll probably make some brownies.  Yum.

Sunday: Cheesy Sausage Penne: When Cassie posted this on Facebook, I immediately thought, "Nah...I probably shouldn't try it just yet.  It also looks like it'll take too long to do on a weeknight."  But then when I showed it to The Hubby, he insisted we try it and reminded me that we have both Sunday and Monday to cook longer meals if we want.  So we're going to go for it.  Hope I don't feel horrible afterwards!

Monday: Cream Cheese, Chicken & Veggie Soup: We made this just a couple of weeks ago, but Baby Girl (and her parents...) loved it so much that I decided to make it again.

Tuesday: Salsafied Chicken with Rice: This is one of our old favorites and it'll be my first foray with salsa in about a month.  I hope it goes well.  The dish itself isn't that spicy, so I think it'll be okay.

Wednesday: Crock Pot Ranch Pork Chops: Another one of Cassie's creations that I'm eager to try.  I hope it's as delicious as it looks.  We'll be having it with mashed potatoes and some sort of frozen veggie, but I don't think I can handle the huge serving of mashed potatoes that Cassie features on her blog :)  In a former life I could, but not these days (unless I want to be tasting mashed potatoes over and over again all evening).

Thursday: Brats & tater tots: I was cleaning out my coupons and found a pretty good one for Johnsonville Chicken Sausage and then happened to look at the Kroger ad and found that Johnsonville products are on sale this week.  Double score!  We'll likely have these made in the skillet with some peppers and onions.

Friday: Veggie quesadillas: The Hubby suggested quesadillas and when he actually requests something, I'll gladly oblige.  I asked what kind of meat he wanted and he said veggie would be fine.  We'll include mushrooms, peppers, and onions inside our quesadillas and serve it with some sort of rice and maybe some beans.

Saturday: We *think* we'll be going out with The Hubby's family to celebrate his mom's and both of his brothers' birthdays (1/30, 1/15, and 1/25), so we're not planning a meal.  If we end up at home that night, we can fix a frozen pizza or go out to eat for the first time in 2 weeks.  We'll just have to wait and see!

Thursday, January 12, 2012

21-25ish Weeks

I've been quiet and I'm sorry.  I'm sorry to my readers, however many there may be left, but mostly I'm sorry to myself and my baby.  I've always dreamed of taking selected blog entries and turning them into a book for my kids and for myself someday.  I feel like I've missed out on a huge chunk of my pregnancy by not blogging about it.

I can explain why, though.  You see, in my head, pregnancy should be a joyous thing.  I don't remember feeling too down when pregnant with Baby Girl, except when I would look in the mirror.  But things haven't been as happy this time around.  I was in this funk for a few weeks that I couldn't shake, plus trying to focus on the holidays and all the joy that that brought with my two-year-old (totally serious--it was a great Christmas!).  And then right after the holidays I started to feel horrible.  I was achy all the time, couldn't get comfortable, and then felt like I couldn't eat or drink anything because of the massive amount of acid (and subsequent nausea) I was dealing with.

I went to my doctor appointment on January 3rd and was told I should take Zantac twice a day, which I've been doing since that day.  It has helped get me to the point where I can eat and drink water again, but I'm still feeling acid-y for no apparent reason sometimes.  I can deal with that, though.  I'm trying very hard not to overeat and to avoid acidic foods and have done a fairly good job so far.  And I am lucky that the reflux is not causing heartburn generally--it's just making me burp up everything that I eat, which is disturbing and disgusting, but not painful.

How am I feeling? Physically, I'm doing a lot better than I was (see above).  I haven't had nearly as many uncomfortable days as I had been.  I've been completely exhausted most days and just want to sleep my life away.  A few weeks ago I noticed that I had stopped losing my hair and my nip.ples had gotten a lot larger.  I think my bo.obs have grown some, but it may just be the natural growth from the weight gain.  I'm still sleeping well (knock on wood), even without a pregnancy pillow, and have only had to wake up a few nights to pee.

Mentally, I'm still feeling yuck about the way I look.  My organs have pushed my fat up and out above my pregnant belly, so my upper belly is still bigger than my lower.  I can typically wear things to round it out, but some days I don't and feel really self-conscious all day.  I still have many people saying they had no idea I was expecting, which makes me feel like they were used to me being fat.

Weight thoughts: I have packed on the pounds over the last two months.  Between my early November appointment and my early January appointment, I think I gained close to 15 pounds.  I gained 6 or 8 between December and January and all of that was BEFORE the holidays.  How crazy.  With my new-found reflux, though, I'm eating a lot smaller portions and therefore am being more conscious of what I eat.  If I want an apple and some junk food, I've generally chosen the apple with some peanut butter.

I'm currently getting close to the weight I was when I delivered Baby Girl (which, subsequently, was also the same weight I was when I got married...and then lost another 50 pounds...)

Doctor appointments?  My next appointment will be February 1st and it will be my glucose screening.  I'll be 27 1/2 weeks at that point.  I'm actually sort of nervous about the glucose screening and hope that I don't fail.  I didn't have a problem last time, but I was also a lot smaller last time.

Movement? I'm feeling lots of definite movement.  Over the holidays (I believe it was the day or two after Christmas), Baby Girl got to feel her baby brother kick her.  The Hubby has felt it a few times, but generally loses patience after awhile.  I do think that Baby Girl was more active than her brother has been.  I don't worry about him, but I just don't think he's moving quite as much as she was.  He's definitely getting around, though.  One hour he'll be way over at the side and the next he'll be down low.  His favorite place to hang out is down very low and his favorite punching bag seems to be my urethra or my bladder.  It's not a comfortable thing at all, especially when I'm in the car getting kicked in the back by my lovely daughter!

Baby preparation? Besides trying to choose a name (which we still haven't been able to do), we have done a whole lot of nothing.  I've looked very casually at bedding online, but I'm just not feeling crazy about any of it yet.  I'm sure I'll get there soon enough.  We've decided that all we need to buy is a double stroller and some sort of carrier.  I don't plan on getting a carrier until baby is here so I have a better feel for the way it will fit with baby and with my body post-baby.  We think we'll get a Sit and Stand stroller and still use the single for awhile with Baby Boy in a carrier, at least until Baby Girl is 3 or so.  She still rides will in a stroller, so I hate to mess with that!

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Meal Plan 1/8/12-1/14/12

I'm still struggling to remember what foods we can eat that don't have tomatoes in them.  In addition to the acid flare-ups (which have gotten better thanks to some medication), my rosacea has been really ugly the morning after we have tomatoes for dinner.  I never realized how much tomato we eat until I've tried cutting it out.  We just love Mexican and Italian flavors.

I'm just taking guesses at what nights we'll have each meal--it might get switched around based on my pregnant tummy.  It's also likely one will be carried over to next week or through the long weekend--I can't imagine we'll actually cook every single night this week.  I hope we will, but just don't have faith in us :)

Sunday: out
Monday: Smoked Sausage, Cabbage, & Potatoes (left from last week)
Tuesday: Roasted whole chicken with mashed potatoes
Wednesday: Cube steak w/gravy cream of mushroom soup over rice (a childhood favorite of mine)
Thursday: Roasted garlic & potato soup
Friday: Pancakes, turkey bacon, and fruit
Saturday: Chicken pot pie

Wednesday, January 4, 2012


I don't know that I can call these resolutions, but I've been trying to consider some goals for 2012--some things I'd like to work on.  It's going to be a year of flux for us, so I don't know how much I can realistically take on, but there are parts of my life I can try to improve either way.  I know you've probably read many, many blog posts about people's just add this one to the list.

1) Be more appreciative.  I want to start showing people how much I appreciate them.  I think we are too quick to take things that people do for granted without telling them that it's been noticed and I want to try to change that, at least from my point of view.  I also challenge YOU to tell people around you how much you appreciate them.  It doesn't have to be a three paragraph essay--just a sentence or two to let someone know that their efforts are noticed and appreciated.

2) Get a firm budget (for the next 6 months).  Things will be changing in July (approximately) when we have to start paying for two in daycare (eek!), but I'd like to get a really firm budget in the meantime.  I feel like we actually do a great job of balancing saving with living comfortably.  We splurge on cable and eating out (and by splurge, I mean we will have Tim Horton's for breakfast once a weekend and eat out for dinner once or twice a week, not usually costing more than $20/meal for all three of us....), but balance that with shopping for deals, grocery savings, and generally watching what we're spending.  I do, however, fear that there is some money falling through the cracks, being spent on "Miscellaneous".  Those trips to Walmart/Meijer/Target, a quick stop in a grocery store that costs $20 because I bought a couple of boxes of Hostess snack cakes (they were BOGO!)...  I don't feel the need to really limit what we're spending, but just be more aware of it and, possibly more importantly, make The Hubby more aware of it, even though (and because) I'm the one who typically spends it.

3) Send birthday cards. My mom's family really makes a point of sending cards for occasions and my mom would love me to be the same way.  I'm, unfortunately, not.  I don't think of it early enough and then feel like a jerk for sending it too late.  So I'm going to pare down the list that my mom has given me (multiple times....) and determine whose birthdays are important to me to recognize (especially if we won't see them) and create a plan for making sure the cards are actually sent.  For instance, I realized during a meeting about an hour ago that my best friend in college's birthday is at the end of the month.  I want to make sure to send her a paper card for it.

4) Enjoy Baby Boy's infanthood more than I enjoyed Baby Girl's.  I don't look back at Baby Girl's early days fondly.  I put a lot of stress upon myself throughout that time (and still do...) and didn't really enjoy the stages she went through at the beginning.  I'm not a person who loves the infant stage anyway (and I am so happy I can admit that now!), but I want to try to relax a bit more with Baby Boy.  I want nursing to be something to enjoy, even at the beginning.  I found that I enjoyed it with Baby Girl once there was less pressure, once I'd made my one-year goal.  I want to allow myself to pump and let others feed Baby Boy and just not stress about the whole experience as much.

I have other goals related to both of my children, but don't really consider them goals for 2012.

I think these are doable.  I really would like to get others to join me in showing appreciation to others!  I think it could go a long way!

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Meal Plan 1/1/12-1/7/12

I've been a slacker blogger over the last few weeks.  Besides the craziness of the holidays, I've been feeling pretty out of sorts with this pregnancy.  Don't worry, I'll post an update on that in the next day or so, but the thing to note in the context of our meal plan is that I'm trying to cut out as much acidic food as possible.  Since our dinners in the past consisted a lot of either Mexican or Italian (ie. tomato-based foods), I'm going to be trying some new recipes.  Any recommendations would be very welcome!

Sunday: Sausage, sauerkraut, and mashed potatoes--I've never worried much about following the tradition of eating pork and sauerkraut on New Year's Day, but it just sounded good to me.
Monday: Honey Lime Enchiladas--this will be my foray into trying to do some Mexican without a red sauce.  We'll see how my body likes it.
Tuesday: Cream Cheese Chicken and Veggie Soup
Wednesday: Creamy Stovetop Mac & Cheese
Thursday: Smoked sausage, cabbage, and potatoes--a comfort meal that reminds me of growing up.  We had this just a few days ago as my first try at a non-acidic meal because I saw cabbage on sale.  It's a great, cheap meal (about $5 for the entire meal and it made about 7 or 8 servings) and, best of all, my body liked it.

The rest of the week will be up in the air.  I'm sure one of those days I'm not going to feel like cooking, so we'll end up eating out, pushing a meal later in the week.