Friday, December 31, 2010
at Kroger for $6, (I love bargain shopping!) Greg and Hunter were busy making mommy a birthday card. :) I walked in the door and Hunter ran up to me with the card. Here is the front:
Greg wrote the words, and Hunter traced them. Then on the inside, Hunter drew a heart and a flower just for me.
Wednesday, December 29, 2010
If you’ve known Kelly (my mom) or me for awhile you have, at some point, probably heard us talk about the workout challenge. It was originally started as a means for us to motivate each other to eat healthy and work out regularly. Later, we invited others to join us and the official Workout Challenge was born. We have been through many different phases, trying to get it “just right” for everyone, without losing the original focus of why we created it in the 1st place.
The last 6 months or so we have struggled with what direction to take and many times we thought we’d just let the Workout Challenge go, even amidst friends encouraging us to continue because of what they had gained, or lost, in most cases! But each time, something would happen that would lead us to believe that, for some reason, God wanted us to continue. So we started to consider other ways we could make a difference, and fighting hunger seemed appropriate, since many of us are where we are because we’ve never experienced hunger in our own lives. So now we had another great idea, but we still lacked the money or resources to do anything with it.
But, once again, God moved, and things that we never thought would happen have happened. Mainly, all of the pieces have fallen into place for us to launch our very own fitness website, complete with diet and exercise tools like eating plans, a recipe builder, exercise demos and the ever popular food and exercise logs - because one thing we know is, in order to lose weight you need to burn more calories than you consume, and nothing helps more than keeping track of it all. We would love for you to check out our new site at www.workout-challenge.com, and in order for you to see all that it has to offer, we’ve created a sample account. You can login to this account using “login: demo” and “password: demo”. This website is a huge step for us and what we feel was the main missing component to our previous challenges.
In line with God’s perfect timing, a New Year is approaching and many of us have a New Year’s resolution involving diet and/or exercise. We are hoping our new tool can help you in this area and are asking you to consider joining or at least to tell others about it. Yes, something this big has costs involved, but we have tried to keep them to a minimum and also include the “prize” component that has worked so well in our other phases.
So here are the main points:
*Cost is $5/month and includes all of the tools on the site. We are asking for a 2 month minimum, so when you click “Join Now” you will be taken to PayPal and charged $10. After the first 2 months you will automatically be charged $5 monthly and you can cancel at any time.
*Each month we will draw for $25 cash (we will draw one name per 100 users). Points are earned while tracking workouts and food, and for weighing in. Every 100 points earned per month gets you one entry in the drawing (max 6 entries per person).
*At least 10% (or $0.50/mth, per member) will go to fight hunger here in the US. We will be donating to the Hope Center in Macomb County, Michigan, as well as national organizations such as Feeding America and Bread for Life.
*Once we reach 100 members, our administration costs will drop and we will be able to double our donations to at least 20% (or $1/mth, per member). We are very anxious to get to that mark!
We appreciate your time in reading this and hope you will consider joining us! Please feel free to forward this information to anyone else who may be interested.
Emma (& Kelly)
For there will never cease to be poor in the land. Therefore I command you, ‘You shall open wide your hand to your brother, to the needy and to the poor, in your land.’ Deuteronomy 15:11
Tuesday, December 28, 2010
My nesting has continued, and continued to be ridiculous. I won't bore you with the details. Let's just say this house is super clean, including all our lightswitches. Greg has been super sweet with helping too. He vacuumed AND scrubbed the shower for me this weekend.
I haven't been sleeping well lately. My insomnia is terrible. I remember this with Hunter too but this time it's harder because I have a toddler that wakes me up at 7am every morning. Id love a good night's rest now.
Everything is pretty much ready for her, aside from my hospital bag. I have yet to pack that, but I think I'll do it tomorrow. We even took down the Christmas tree and replaced it with the baby swing. I love looking in the corner of the living room and seeing it there. :)
I've been getting actual real contractions lately! They're totally sporadic, not very frequent, and really mild, but they're a start! I hope they continue to increase in intensity and frequency. (Oh boy, I'm sure I'll regret saying that very soon.)
Here's this week's belly pics:
I don't know if she's dropped yet. I don't think Hunter ever did to know what to expect. All I DO know is that suddenly, I'm up 3 times a night to pee, and it wasn't that way last week.
And as requested by my mom, a front facing photo. I'm laughing because my husband had just called my belly a torpedo.
Thankfully, I'm still stretch mark free! Unfortunately, Hunter already ruined my belly with stretch marks. I guess I won't complain though. At least baby girl hasn't given me anymore! (And I hope to keep it that way!)
Sunday, December 26, 2010
So it started snowing last night at about 9pm. It is 5:30pm right now and it's still coming down! Greg and Hunter went out to play in it, and as soon as Hunter discovered the snow was up to his knees, he started crying because he didn't know what to do! He did warm up to it after a while and he and daddy had a good time out there. I got a funny video of Bella, our dog, trying to make her way through the snow too. Here it is:
Virginia Beach really isn't equipped for snow like this so we have our fingers crossed that Greg will be off of work tomorrow, and our three day weekend becomes a 4 days weekend!
We webcammed with my family Christmas Eve so they could see Hunter open his gifts. He got a toddler laptop with educational games from them that kept him occupied the whole day. He loves it! Then, that evening, our church had a Christmas Eve service we attended.
I really wanted to see Hunter's reaction to all the gifts under the tree Christmas morning...so much so that I dreamt (thank you vivid pregnancy dreams) that he opened all his gifts enough to see what was inside before waking us up. I woke up from that dream about 4am, and didn't sleep very well after that for fear that it would come true! I finally got up at 6:30 and both boys were still sound asleep, so I went in the kitchen and made some of Pioneer Woman's homemade cinnamon rolls. Before starting to tackle the dishes, I checked on Hunter to make sure he was still sleeping so I could be in the living room when he awoke to capture his reaction. He was still sound asleep so I started on the dishes. Not five minutes into washing them, the child comes walking up to me in the kitchen! So I didn't get the initial reaction, but I did get to go into the living room again with him so we could take a closer look...and at least my dream didn't come true! We let him open his stocking stuffers and then we ate breakfast. The cinnamon rolls were amazing, and we also enjoyed bacon and eggs. Here's a picture of the delicious cinnamon rolls! (Please disregard the burnt bacon in the back.)
Hunter had such a fun time opening all his gifts. Christmas morning is SO fun as a parent but in a whole different way. I loved being able to shower him with gifts, and being the firstborn, he really does need new toys every so often since he grows out of the old ones. After gift opening was finished, I went in his toy box and closet to pack up some old toys that he hardly plays with anymore to make room for the new ones. When my pregnant eyes saw the bottom of the toy box with tons of little random pieces that had collected down there, my nesting bug did not like it! I ended up taking everything out, and cleaning the toy box. Greg and I organized everything again, and packed a lot up. I was worried where we were going to stick all his new toys but we definitely found the room, much to Hunter's dismay.
We webcammed with Greg's family in the afternoon and they got to see Hunter open the gifts from them. He got an adorable set of fire truck pj's and a robe, both handmade by Nana. He absolutely loves the robe and didn't even want to take it off to go to bed! Here he is in front of the tree sporting his new clothes.
For dinner, we had Honey Baked Ham, cheesy potatoes, green bean casserole, and Pioneer Woman's homemade Parker House Rolls.
After dinner, daddy and Hunter were playing with some of his new toys, and I got a cute video of it. :)
We ended the night with the three of us playing Candy Land, and enjoying cupcakes.
It was a wonderful, intimate Christmas for the three of us. How was everyone else's Christmas?
Thursday, December 23, 2010
They're going to look so cute in their matching shirts!
Wednesday, December 22, 2010
Yay, we're yet another week closer to meeting our little peanut!
If you've read previous posts, you may have learned that I am in full nesting mode! Greg told me yesterday that I'm "addicted to cleaning." As a nesting pregnant woman, I was so flattered. :) It is pretty much ridiculous the things I've scrubbed with a toothbrush, but this house is CLEAN!
Hunter keeps asking if the baby is going to come out because we've told him she will "soon." I keep telling him now we have to wait for after Christmas and after my birthday. I'm glad he's excited, but if only he knew how his life will change forever!
Baby girl's room is completely finished. I have the cloth diapers in the dryer right now and washing them was the last thing that had to be done. When she's ready to come out, we're ready for her! Since the room is completely finished, Greg said, "So that means you have no reason to go in there now until she comes." I told him, "Well, no...I mean, you never know if all her clothes need rearranging in the drawers or something!" I haven't had the urge to do that (yet.) But I still have at least a couple weeks!
I'm so excited for Christmas in just 3 days! And I'm hoping with Christmas and New Year's here, my January 4th mark of being full term will come very quickly!
Monday, December 20, 2010
Part of Santa included going to the mall to see him. So, yesterday evening, 6 days before Christmas and on a weekend (because we're crazy,) we got in the car and drove across the street (literally) to the mall. We have been telling Hunter that Santa was going to bring him presents and he was excited when we asked if he wanted to go see him to tell him what he wanted. It did take some talking to get his answer passed "presents," and then from that he went to "toys." We reminded him of what kinds of toys he liked (cars, trucks, trains, etc) and he agreed with them all and was ready to tell Santa.
Even though he doesn't look too excited in the second picture, his face was beaming after we left. He definitely enjoyed it. I can't wait to see his face Christmas morning when he opens up his train and train track from Santa!
Also, Hunter informed me yesterday that Santa will be bringing these presents in his car to our house. Next year, we'll work on the whole "sleigh and reindeer" thing.
Saturday, December 18, 2010
Wednesday, December 15, 2010
1. Baby car seat
2. Car seat base
3. Baby swing
4. Every inch of our two toilets
5. Single and double stroller
6. All sponges in my house
Things That Were Sterilized AND Scrubbed with a Scrub Brush and/or Toothbrush
1. Hunter's potty
2. Hunter's step stool
4. Bathroom floors
5. Bathroom baseboards
6. Tiled area by front door
7. Front door and frame
People That Think I'm Crazy
3. My dog
4. (Insert your name here)
Anyone out there that's reading this that I went to middle school with: Your eyes are not deceiving you. I am, indeed, wearing my 7th grade basketball shirt...because it's one of the few things that still fits me!
Tuesday, December 14, 2010
It was then that I, too, made a connection. I flashed back to one of the first times I ever met Greg, almost 7 years ago. He was leaving for boot camp with my brother, and one of his brothers. We were at the recruiting office saying goodbye. One of the few things I remember about Greg from that night is his shirt he had on...a John Deere sweatshirt. Another one of the few memories I have is my reaction to that sweatshirt. I thought, "Really? John Deere?"
Go figure that I end up finding out that (very hot) redneck is the man of my dreams. And go figure I (willingly and excitedly) end up making John Deere crib set for our baby girl, regardless of what my first opinions of John Deere were. And go figure that because he's a man, I can go in his closet and pull out that exact shirt he wore when he left for boot camp because he doesn't get rid of any clothes.
What can I say? The man has rubbed off on me. But ya know what? He allows that old sweatshirt to hang on a pink hanger.
Love, it's all about give and take.
I also had a lady from church with 4 girls let me go through her baby stuff and borrow what I wanted. That also saved us lots of money. Thank you, MaryLynn!
Monday, December 13, 2010
I pulled Hunter's curtains open this morning and saw that it was snowing. I was just excited that we were going to get some more use out of our "Snowy" tab on our weatherboard for school. However, the morning continued, and so did the snow...
Next thing I knew it had actually accumulated some, so I dug through Hunter's closet to find his snow boots that had been handed down that I packed up thinking "we won't be needing these." I bundled Hunter up and we went outside to play in it! It's nothing compared to what Greg and I grew up with in Detroit but any accumulation isn't typical here so we have to play in the snow when we get the chance! It will probably be gone tomorrow.
We built a snowman while we were out there. Here's a video of Hunter helping. If I sound a little winded, that's because I was. Our neighbor saw us out there as she was getting in her car. I'm sure an almost 8 month pregnant lady trying to bend down to roll a big snowball was quite the sight. It wasn't easy. Don't judge.
We used a baby carrot for our baby snowman. "What are the eyes and mouth made out of?" you ask? Prunes. I'm pregnant and it's what I have in the house. Don't judge.
We ended our morning with hot chocolate and whipped cream over lunch. He's saying "cheese" and taking a sip simultaneously in this picture.
Then after lunch, we did this.
If this were a video, you'd hear snoring. Like father, like son.
Oh, to be a kid...
Friday, December 10, 2010
*crib sheets (4-5)
*lap pads, sold at BRU as "lap pads" and I lay them on the bed and then baby lays on them. if they spit up, you just change the little pad instead of the whole sheet (at least 5)
*bassinet and bassinet sheet set (plus ...a few extra fitted bassinet sheets)
pacifiers (I'd say a lot, but i had about a dozen with my son and he ended up being a thumb sucker, so I have 2 packs and I'm only opening one until I find out if she likes them)
*burp cloths (about a dozen)
*changing table and pad
*clothes, obviously (sleepers, lots of onsies, etc.)
*receiving blankets (6+)
*towels and washcloths (2-3 towels, and one pack of washcloths)
*baby soap and lotion
*little nail files and nail clippers
*diaper bag (Make sure it includes a portable changing pad for when you're out!)
*diaper pail and refills (not a necessity but nice to have)
*nipple cream for nursing (I think Lansinoh cream and nursing pads are the best out of all of them out there)
*boppy, and at least 2 covers
*free and clear detergent for washing clothes in
*sterilizer (for pacifiers) (Another thing that's not a necessity. You could just boil them if you preferred, but I love my microwave sterilizer!)
*nursing bras. (Make sure you get at least a couple with no under wire to wear at night because they're way more comfortable.)
Wednesday, December 8, 2010
Tuesday, December 7, 2010
It has a solid pink side with the John Deere fabric bordering it.
Here's the valance. (Please excuse the plastic on the windows. It takes away from the adorable valance...but it's COLD here!)
And here it is all together!
So there it is. I absolutely love it and can't wait for her to use it all!
Monday, December 6, 2010
FINALLY! My online sociology class is complete and over with, I worked my butt off last week and (started and) finished the crib set. I'm so excited to reveal the fabric I made it out of (which will be done very soon.)
So, yesterday I started washing stuff.
I did the linens first because I still have to clean out the dresser and get it ready to put clothes in it, but that's on my list for today. Once I have all the linens and clothes washed and put away, I can really put the room together without garbage bags of clothes everywhere! I am so excited.
I made Greg take us to Lowe's last night and we got both Hunter and baby girl new dresser knobs for the dressers our neighbors gave us that match their rooms. Hunter helped me put them on last night and he was actually a huge help! We also got a curtain rod so we can hang the matching curtains I made. I had to make sure we had everything so the entire room could be finished!!!
So, as long as my head and stomach cooperate today (I had a rough night last night) I'm hoping I can get a ton done and have pictures of the completed room up by tomorrow evening. YAY!
Sunday, December 5, 2010
Thursday, December 2, 2010
Then, my pregnancy hormones happened. For whatever reason, I have wanted chili the past couple weeks! I had a hard task ahead of me though. My husband will NOT eat chunks of tomatoes, so I had to find a recipe of a meal that he doesn't really like that didn't have a staple ingredient of most chilis! Anyway I'm babbling. I wanted a barbecue, sweet flavored chili so after googling, I happened to find one on manapprovedrecipes.com. I changed the recipe a little bit, and here it is:
1-1 1/2 pounds ground beef
1 (15 ounce) jar tomato sauce
1/2 cup chopped onions (Greg loves onions, so I put way more than this in, but it's up to you!)
3 minced garlic cloves
1 (15 ounce) can beans (I used great white northern, but there are many other choices!)
1/4 cup chili powder (OR homemade chili powder. The substitution would be: 2 tsp paprika, 4 tsp ground cumin, 2 tsp oregano, 4 tsp garlic powder, and your choice of how much cayenne pepper you want)
1/2 cup water
2 tsp cumin (in addition to what's listed above if you make your own chili powder)
1/4 cup brown sugar (NOT packed)
1 cup of your favorite BBQ sauce
Brown beef in skillet. Drain fat. Transfer to slow cooker.
Add remaining ingredients, stir well to combine, and cover. I put way less cayenne pepper than what it called for because neither one of us like spicy foods and it had a good kick too it. It was a little too much for Hunter, but if you like spicy and aren't feeding a toddler, throw a lot in! I added about 1.5 tsp to mine and it gave it a good start to being spicy. Cook on LOW for 8 hours or HIGH for 4, stirring periodically. Make sure you do stir it at least once an hour because it's really thick so it will burn to the pot if you don't.
Serve with shredded cheddar, sour cream, Ritz crackers, or whatever chili garnish you prefer. Now excuse me while I go eat chili leftovers...
Wednesday, December 1, 2010
I had another Dr's appointment yesterday. He did an internal ultrasound and said my placenta is not in the way at all for a natural delivery. Praise God and thank you for your prayers, everyone! He also said my measurement is right on, and my weight gain is perfect.
I finally made good headway on her crib set! I finished her blanket and valence today. I can't wait to be finished with the room and post pictures! After I'm done sewing the set, the next item on my list is washing her clothes...I'm so excited!!!!
I got the recipe from my Betty Crocker Cookbook, but have modified it to make it even better.
Let me first say that the recipe I'm giving you doesn't make that much. Greg and I can eat it all in one sitting, so I always (at least) double it. Just keep that in mind if you make it.
2-3 tbsp butter
1 small onion, chopped
1 stalk celery, thinly sliced
2-3 tbsp flour
1/4 tsp pepper
1/4 tsp ground mustard
12 oz beer (the darker the beer, the heartier the flavor)
1 cup milk
2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
1.5-2 cups diced, steamed potatoes
Melt butter in saucepan. Cook onion and celery in melted butter intil tender.
Add flour, pepper, and mustard. Stir in beer and milk. Heat to boiling over medium heat. Boil for one minute.
Turn heat to low and gradually add cheese, stirring until melted. Add potatoes and stir.