Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Sick Day.

Things are a bit quiet around here because...I am SICK! (Did you think I was going to say I had the baby early?)

Monday morning I woke up feeling a little "off" and then quickly realized it was a head cold. My baby shower is on Sunday so I am anxious to get healthy quickly! I'm avoiding all cold medicines because I'm positive they aren't good for bebe so natural remedies have taken over my life. I've been drinking lots of green juices/smoothies, hot water with lemon, pregnancy tea with honey, taking my vitamins, and I'm BFFs with my neti pot. 

I've been trying to sleep more than usual (darn pregnancy insomnia isn't really helping with that) and have been making dinners with LOADS of garlic and bell peppers. When I can't sleep, I'm trying to rest. Usually when I'm sick I push myself too hard and then take longer to recover. I have a to-do list a mile long but have been trying to ignore it and just lay down with a glass of OJ and pile of tissues.

Here's to crossed fingers that I am back to 100% by this weekend, I've been looking forward to my shower for months!

What are your go-to natural remedies when you're sick?

Friday, September 19, 2014

Happy Birthday (tomorrow), Rhyno!

Tomorrow is Rhyno's birthday and I am still working on ways to make this whole weekend special. 

We're going out to Dave & Buster's with our closest friends tonight, Rhyno has a soccer game and then we're having my parents over for lunch (and tool shopping for Ry and my dad), and dinner with just the two of us. Plus, CAKE. 

A few weeks ago my mom asked for baby/toddler photos of Rhyno for our baby shower. Can I just say, HOW CUTE IS HE? He's a pretty cute adult too!


Happy birthday to my bubba, my Ryan, my Rhyno, my love. You make me the craziest and the happiest and love me more than anyone ever could. I can't wait to see you become a dad next month and spend so many more years going on adventures with you.

Happy birthday (tomorrow) to my love!

Thursday, September 18, 2014

Pin-Spirational: Chia Juice.

Welcome back to Pin-Spirational!

The Reason: I started drinking a big scoop of chia seeds in a tall glass of water every morning after reading about all the benefits of doing so from Kris Carr. I've been trying to get Rhyno on board with doing the same since we decided to get healthier before we become parents. I started with stirring the seeds into orange juice but he said they clumped up unless he stirred the whole time (high maintenance breakfast drinker, that one). During a grocery run at Target he picked up some of those Mamma Chia drinks--he loved them, which is great for his digestive health but not so great for our wallets. Those suckers are expensive and rarely do I find a coupon! So I set out to see if there was a way I could get the same gel-like texture at home.
The Process: I apologize in advance for the blurry photos...

Gather your supplies. In this case that means juice of your choice (we only had orange), chia seeds (I used black), a bowl, measuring utensils, and warm water. Easy enough!

 Put 2 tablespoons of chia seeds into a bowl--sorry I didn't use some cute, thrifted, twee bowl. I just used plain, ol' Tupperware.

Pour a cup of warm water over your seeds.

Stir it up! Make sure all your seeds are coated with water.

  Cover your seeds and leave in the fridge overnight.

The next day, remove your seeds (which will have a total jelly texture) and pour a nice, big glass of your juice of choice. Um, not too big though...I poured too much OJ and then had to gulp some down to make room for the seedlings.

Mix together! Stir it well. I noticed right away the texture is much different when you soak the seeds over night. I typically put a raw spoonful in water and it clumps together and stays at the top of the glass. After soaking, these were pretty evenly distributed and didn't seem to require constant stirring.

The Verdict: A winner! Though next time I might make the juice at home and try different flavors, Rhyno said the texture was spot-on and BOY does this save money! Mamma Chia can cost about $4 or $5 at our Target whereas I can get seeds in bulk for about $5 (and it'll last me weeks) and a carton of orange juice is only a couple bucks. I'm a hoarder of glass containers so this would be easy to pour into a recycled bottle and grab on the go.

Rhyno and I are already dreaming up other flavors to try--homemade grapefruit or cherry juice with a bit of coconut water? Carrot juice with kale? Watermelon juice with a little mint? The possibilities are endless!

Have you tried any great pins lately?

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

A Thought to Chew On with Your Brain Teeth.

Sometimes you are perusing Pinterest and you see something that really bangs you on the side of the head.

So often I wonder about what will happen next and try to plan everything as much as possible. With so much that I can't plan happening right now and so many things in the future that are out of my control, I needed to see this. It reminded me to take a step back and breathe. For so long I stressed about getting pregnant and then when I decided to be patient, it happened. My guess is that most things will happen that way...I just have to remember to breathe.

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

From Duo to Trio.

It's Tuesday (and, you know, just a regular day) so I better yammer on about my pregnancy, right? 

With just over a month to go (41 days!), Rhyno and I are getting more and more excited to welcome Babysaurus into the world and take him or her home from the hospital. I feel so ready to become a parent and I don't feel anxiety (so far) but I do realize this is a big life change. For 8+ years it has just been my Rhyno and I. We have been able to pick up and go whenever we wanted, to order pizza at 11pm because we forgot to eat dinner, and to skip grocery shopping for the week because going on an adventure to Six Flags seemed more fun. 

As I count down to our duo becoming a trio, I have been trying to relish the last few weeks of it just being the two of us. I've found some lists of things to do before baby is here and making my own small list of things to take advantage of or do before our bundle of joy is here.

1.) Sleep! 
Everyone and their mother has been telling me to get sleep now while it's still possible. Despite some pregnancy insomnia, I've been trying to take all that advice to heart. I have been crawling into bed a little earlier on weeknights, sleeping in a little later on weekends, and taking more naps than usual (I was NEVER a nap person before!). Even though finding a comfy sleeping position isn't quite as easy and sometimes I get up to pee at 3am completely wide awake for the rest of the day, I am soaking in sleeping.
2.) Date Nights (especially on weeknights)!
Rhyno and I love a good date night and since it has been just us for so long we usually go on a few dates a week. Though I plan to stick to at least monthly dates after baby is here we are just trying to take advantage of being able to head out for dinner and a movie on a weeknight without finding a babysitter.

3.) Doing Anything on a Whim!
 I know that babies are on a schedule and going out takes planning so for now we're taking advantage of just deciding to go to the movies while running errands or taking Violet for a long, long car ride.

4.) Maternity Photos!
Up until a couple of days ago I wasn't into the idea of maternity photos. I know I don't have a Pinterest-worthy bod and Rhyno isn't that into photos (especially artsy or sentimental ones...our engagement photoshoot was awkward and hilarious) but the more I think about it, I want to capture this little piece of time. I'll never have this moment again so I'd like to remember it.
5.) Lazy Days!
Babies require feedings and changes and come with responsibilities, so I've set aside a couple days to just be lazy. I've relished in a couple Sunday afternoons where I only moved from the couch to pee or get more snacks. I've been a-okay with spending hours rotting my brain with TV.

Any suggestions of other things we should do before baby arrives?

Monday, September 15, 2014

Photo Memories.

Warning: Lots of really silly photos that have nothing to do with one another ahead but I love them and they make me happy. Hopefully they make you a little happy too.
Recently while searching all my old photo files for a specific photo (never did find it) I realized two things. 1.) I need to organize the photos on my computer better cause, dang, there are a lot of them. 2.) I really love going through my old photos. 

Some choice and random finds to kick this week off right:

Have a happy Monday!

Friday, September 12, 2014


 A few of my 100 Happy Days. 
 (Clockwise from top left: a sweet handmade and made from recycled materials surprise from an old friend for Babysaurus, celebrating Grandparents Day & the Bears game with my parents, chalkboard paint on every dang thing, a delicious creme brulee milkshake, a gorgeous morning sky, and a big package for Babysaurus--this kid gets the best and most thoughtful mail!)
....eating whenever I can. I still feel like the desire to eat never fades but I get full so much faster than usual. This week I made chili in the slow cooker for dinner. After a heaping bowl, Rhyno was so full he could hardly move. After a heaping bowl, I was craving cereal and proceeded to have two bowls. I'm still on the fruit craze (hello, honeycrisp apples, you sexy bitches) and pumpkin granola is all I ever want. Also, hot chocolate or lemonde? ALL THE TIME. 

...making plans for Rhyno's birthday! He turns 32 next Saturday and I want to make his day really special as his last birthday with just the two of us. I had originally planned to hit up a Lucky Boys Confusion and Mest show (talk about throwback, right?) at a local venue but the doc let me know the loud volume may not be best for babe. I'm thinking maybe dinner and a movie or a trip to a museum. Rhyno is pretty low-key (for his last birthday his request was Taco Bell and episodes of The League). I'm also researching some local breweries since he's a bit of a beer nerd.

...listening to Centuries by Fall Out Boy.  I love them so much. I have listened to this song at least 3,874,978 times already.

...reading all the baby books I should have read back in my first trimester. Still. Can I make an addendum to this one to include what I'm writing? I started compiling the pregnancy pieces of our baby book and have had such a special time remembering finding out we were pregnant and announcing it and what I've been craving.

...watching Masterchef! We don't have cable so Tuesday nights are my "catch up on Masterchef via Hulu" nights. I don't want to pass out any spoilers but BOTH people I was rooting for were recently booted so now I have my fingers crossed for Elizabeth. I'm a huge fan of this show, you might remember my cousin-like-a-sister and I even had a finale viewing party with our own Mystery Box challenge last year (remember?).

...loving that Fall is just around the corner! We've had a few cold and rainy days that I soaked up. I can't wait to light apple-scented candles and turn on our fireplace and crunch around on some leaves.
 ...looking forward to our baby shower in just a few weeks! I've been trying my darnedest to find a really knock-out dress, that's my main project for the weekend.
Have a great weekend!
If you also partake in Currently posts, please link up in the comments!

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Pin-Spirational: Taking Care of Swollen Feet.

This week is a lesson in "sometimes things don't go according to plan."
For this week's Pin-spirational I had planned to find some great pin on taking care of swollen pregnancy feet. I don't know why I didn't search this before but oh well, I didn't. After doing a bit of Pinterest I didn't find anything terribly helpful that wasn't common sense or some company pushing their pregnancy product on unwilling Pinners. 

The best pin I found? This. Again, mostly common sense. 

I tried the tips found in this pin before even deciding to search. I sleep on my side anyhow since a watermelon-sized bump doesn't make for stomach sleeping and sleeping flat on your back can restrict blood flow to baby. I limit salt (aside from cravings for salty potato chips) just for health's sake. I stay cool because OH MY GOSH I AM ALWAYS HOT. I swear, our air conditioner is constantly set at 74 degrees. Where are you Fall? Admittedly, I haven't tried compression hose. Maybe soon. Maybe not.

So, some tricks I've found useful that I should probably pin the shit out of on my own? Put your dang feet up, gurl! I try to seriously elevate my feet for at least 20 minutes at night (if not way longer). If you are super swollen? Dunk your feet in a bucket of cool water mixed with epsom salt. Use those terrible infomercial-sold Yoga Toes things. I bought them on a whim and they actually work pretty great. They stretch my toes out and I feel like they help a lot with blood flow.

So, there it is, the world's laziest Pin-Spirational!

Have you tried any great pins lately?

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Lovely Links.

Since I basically troll the internet for cuteness and laughter every day, a round up of lovely links for this lovely Wednesday: 

Any cute links, stories, memes I should know about?

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Pregnancy Prep.

Our "go time" diaper bag, which we've slowly been packing with hospital necessities. Also, that dino? I die. He's just waiting for his buddy to arrive.

 So, I don't know if you know this but being pregnant and getting ready for a baby involves a lot of prep work. Like, learning how to keep baby alive and getting the house clean and preparing to not be able to go to the grocery store alone for a few weeks and dimming the lights on work for a few weeks.

On our "before baby" list of things to prep?

1.) Hospital Bag.
You know that age-old sitcom bit were the pregnant lady and the daddy-to-be rush out of the house and are furiously throwing things in a suitcase (like a cordless phone and frying pan and evening gown) because they didn't pack a hospital bag? THAT IS MY NIGHTMARE. I am a prepared person by nature (have you noticed?) and worry that we will be at the hospital without something I need. I've pulled together a few lists from veteran moms of what to pack in the hospital bag and have started ordering things I don't have (like Tuck's medicated butt pads because apparently you need them). I have a post-it in the top of the bag of things to remember that we can't pack yet (phone chargers, my camera, my glasses, etc.). I plan to have this bag fully packed before October 1st and waiting by the door/in the car at any given moment.

2.) Freezer Meals/Meal Plans.
Of course I am obsessed with the food situation. What will we eat after the baby is here? But how will I get more food? I have begun meal planning for the 30 days after babe arrives already and have a date with my mom the first weekend of October to whip up a TON of freezer meals--casseroles, soups, stir-fry bags, the whole lot. I know I will be too consumed with baby to meal plan in those first weeks and unable to get to the store, so I'm trying to cover off and prepare us to eat healthfully. I don't want to spend money/calories on eating pizza every night so I'm trying to set Rhyno and I up for success. I'm also planning to whip up oatmeal mixes in small Tupperware containers for quick and easy breakfasts or lunches.

3.) Getting Home Ready.
We've already deep cleaned/organized most of the house (just the basement and that pesky garage left to finish) so now it's a matter of making sure we're fully prepped for any home needs while we are caring for Babysaurus. We have plans to winterize our yard a bit earlier than usual--a final weeding, unhooking the hoses so they don't freeze, burning our leaves. I also have a list of things I need to buy in bulk--toilet paper, dog food, cat litter--so we don't suddenly run out when I'm cooped up. I also have a date with myself in early October to make big batches of all our homemade cleaners because who wants to be grating Fels Naptha when they could be cuddling an infant? A genius idea I had? Rhyno is having a cleaning service come in while I'm in the hospital with the baby to clean the house so we come home to a sparkly palace. 

We also have our big baby shower in a few weeks (eee!!) and I can't wait to put everything in order and get the finishing touches put on everything.

4.) Pet Projects.
We've been prepping our pets for our bundle for a few months now. I think the cats will mostly stay away (though Kira has been sneaking into the baby's bassinet in our bedroom to sleep at night), we have been working with Violet with a baby doll to be gentle. We've been training her not to rip up the baby's toys and that she doesn't play rough in the baby's room.

5.) Work.
I feel mostly prepared when it comes to work! My last day before maternity leave is set and I met with my boss and coworkers this week to figure out who will be taking care of things while I'm out. I have my clients prepped for transition and I feel like things will go pretty smoothly.

Any other ideas of things to be prepared for before Babysaurus arrives (in just 48 days!)?

Monday, September 8, 2014

Happy Monday.

I know Monday's get a bad rap but I have found that the older I get the less I dread them (maybe because I don't have a hangover from a weekend full of parties and junk food and more parties?). I'm actually headed up to the office today which means a long car ride of tunes and NPR plus I get to actually get dressed. Like, I'm wearing jeans. On a Monday. With real shoes. I get to talk to people's faces today. I am having meetings with real live people in front of me. Isn't it weird what you get excited about once you work from home for a long time?

Anywho, I've been thinking more about the energy we put out there. There are so many people who complain that it's "already Monday" or wah-wah that another work week is upon us. Sure, weekends are the best but why not make Monday a kick ass day just because? I know my jeans and real shoes and I will try to make the best of Monday for sure.

Have a happy Monday! I mean it.

Friday, September 5, 2014

A Very Happy Birthday.

Taking this Friday to wish a special birthday to a special person.

Though she's no longer here, today is my Aunt Joan's birthday. A vibrant, fiercely loyal, and warm-hearted woman who I miss every single day. Her love was tough and lasting and unconditional. Her voice was one of a kind and her laugh infectious. My heart aches that my husband and baby will never get the chance to meet her, but I consider every day I spent with her a lucky one.
Happy birthday, Aunt Joan!

In honor of this wonderful lady, I challenge all of you to do some acts of kindness this weekend--pay for the person in line behind you at Starbucks, leave a quarter taped to a gumball machine, put a nice note on a public bathroom mirror. Bring a smile to someone and pass along kindness. I think that's exactly what she would have done.

Enjoy your weekend!

Thursday, September 4, 2014

Pin-Spirational: Coconut Oil Hair Treatment.

The Reason: I have long, curly hair. I absolutely love my hair but without deep conditioning treatments it can get pretty dry, especially during pregnancy and in the summertime.
The Process: I apologize for not having photos for this one--it's hard to take photos of yourself with wet hands and in the bathroom!
Wash your hair and towel dry so it's still damp. 
Melt a bit of coconut oil in a bowl, I just used a few heaps since my hair is longer and I knew I'd need a bit more than called for.  

Section off hair and comb the oil through. After you've saturated every dang strand with the coconutty goodness, wrap your head in plastic wrap (warning: this will make you look incredibly sexy). 

I left my wrap on for about 20 minutes and then rinsed out with warmish water, finishing with a quick cold rinse (I heard once this is great for getting shiny hair). I let my strands air dry.

The Verdict:I'll definitely do this again, I've actually done it twice in the last two weeks. It's super easy, only uses things I already have on hand, and I can throw the coconut oil in my hair and get things done around the house while it soaks in. I definitely need a bit more oil for my hair since it's so thick and there's so much of it. I also suggest doing a salt scalp scrub or using a gritty shampoo before treatment--I used my Lush BIG shampoo beforehand and my hair felt AMAZING afterward! I noticed it was much shinier and after the shampoo, it felt MUCH lighter. A++. When you have good hair, you have a good day.

Have you tried any great pins lately?

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

(More) Semi-Pro Tips: Working from Home.

I'm back again with more tips for working from home (you can see the first set here).

This is my intern.You know, just an owl holding some pens.

I've worked (mostly) from home for almost three years and I feel like I'm getting better at it (brag, much?) in that I feel like I get less distracted and more efficient.

1.) Set Boundaries. I mentioned in my last post about working from home that it's important to have a separation between professional and personal life when you work from home. Set boundaries so people know that no, you can't run an errand for them during your work day and no, you are laying by the pool all day. When I was freelancing and my hours were more flexible, I was okay with occasionally babysitting or running an errand during the work day. Now that I have a full time job, I just say no. When Rhyno comes home from work at 2pm, he knows to just pop in to say hi and then be on his way. Would he call me at a corporate office and talk to me for hours? Probably not. Would you ask me to babysit your 8 year old if I was sitting at a company desk? No. That would be mad boring for a kid. So, in the vein of keeping focused during the work day, I try not to do anything that I wouldn't do in an actual office (with the exception of shoes...I'd probably wear those in an office but I never do at home).

 2.) Get Organized. I can't concentrate as well in a space full of chaos. I try to keep my work stuff insanely organized be it with my Outlook calendar, a dry-erase board, post-it notes about important tasks, and my daily to-do list. On my office wall I have one calendar with only work appointments on it, another with my blog editorial calendar, and another with personal things.

3.) Remember Your Schedule. When I know I have a crazy busy day ahead, I try to wake up a bit earlier than usual to enjoy my breakfast and tea with Rhyno to get me centered before work. I work in Public Relations which means when I have a busy day I have a BUSY DAY and this is nearly every day. I like to be busy but it's easy to get overwhelmed so if I know I have a ton to do, I get out of bed earlier to jump start my day. I don't schedule the cable guy or the air vent cleaners for work hours to avoid time-sucks and distractions. If you have the type of job that allows you to be away from your desk when you work from home or allows you to ignore your phone/email for chunks of time, then this rule doesn't apply to you.

4.) Ask for Help. Let's be honest, working from home can get incredibly lonely. It is easy to feel like an island, all alone, floating out there (maybe that's just hormones talking). Just because I'm not physically there doesn't mean I can't ask for help though, I have gotten much better over the last few months with reaching out to coworkers when I need help and I've gotten such great response. PR is also rarely a lonely field because I'm constantly on conference calls or emailing clients, coworkers, and media contacts. Also, just chit chat with people, bond with your coworkers, and it helps to have a team that makes you feel included even from far away (luckily, I do).
5.) Remember to Take Time Off. For a long time I figured working at home was my reward so I rarely asked for time off (aside from medical things) despite working 10-12 hour days.  No, you still need time off. Want to take a vacation day and sit at home in any room except your office? Do it. Working non-stop isn't good for anyone's productivity or creativity. I can tell when I've overworked myself because I have a harder time with my writing and my PR pitch ideas don't flow as easily. That's when I know I need to ask for a day or so off--now don't do it every single week but you know what I mean. Just because you're at home doesn't mean you shouldn't take time off for yourself!

Do you work from home? Any good tips?

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Pregnancy Snapshots.

I hope you had a great long weekend! I feel like I slept a lot of mine away (that's third trimester for you, I guess). After looking through my camera memory card and my phone gallery, I am happy for my crazy "I need to take photos of everything" mentality because I realized I have some great tiny moments of my pregnancy tucked away for the future.

Some snippets of pregnancy so far...

Taken the morning after we took the initial (and following FIVE) positive pregnancy tests. Yes, I peed on that. You're welcome.

A gift from my very excited sister-in-law, brother-in-law, and nephews. Those tiny socks? I can't take it.

Hats we bought the week we found out we were pregnant and I was so excited that I wanted to buy out the entire baby section at Target. 

Shoes I bought years ago when we started trying for a baby. There were definitely frustrated times when I felt like we were never going to get any use out of them. Now they are sitting in a bin of other tiny footwear waiting patiently for Babysaurus's tiny feet.

 Typical organized freak. 

 A sweet card from Rhyno's sister.

The beginnings of our books-to-read-before-baby-is-here collection. Admittedly, we are getting down to the wire now and I am just beginning on some of these.

Three or four cups of caffeine-free pregnancy per day helps ease the coffee cravings.

Just some rad mag swag from the doctor's office....yes, I just wrote "rad mag swag."

Making space for baby! This weekend we cleared out a corner of our bedroom for the infant napper and set up a swing for baby's naps in the front room. I can't believe we are almost there!

Now that it's September we are officially having a baby NEXT MONTH! I can't believe it! I feel like it was both years ago and minutes ago that I took that very first pregnancy test--on a complete whim no less. I had felt more tired than usual so I thought, "What the hell? I'll take a test." After so many times seeing a negative response, I had to do a double-take when I saw two lines on the test. Now with giant kicks in my belly at all hours and bi-weekly doctor visits where I get to hear that big, strong heartbeat things are so real. 

October 27th, get here faster!