Saturday, January 28, 2012

Just another reason...

...why I love my husband!

When I lived in Scotland, my mum used to bring me hot chocolate when she came to wake us up. It really helped on those cold, dark Scottish mornings!

I told Brian about this last week, and he's been a star ever since! Yes, I am a very spoiled pregnant lady :)

I'm not sure how long it'll last, but I'm going to enjoy it while it does!

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

My Hair...

Or at least what's left of it! :) Firstly, apologies for picture quality. The first was taken with my webcam about two weeks ago, the second with my (not-so-spiffy-anymore) digital camera.

I like it. Not the best "before" picture, but gives an idea if you haven't seen me recently. I definitely suit longer hair better, but I think I'm going to have fun with it while it's short. I'm excited to see how it'll look curly!

Monday, January 23, 2012

Weekly Goals!

Evidence I went to the pool :)

Here's how I did on my last week's goals:

  1. Take more pictures! This is our last year in Provo and I want to remember it! I'm going to try and remember to take my camera with me wherever we go and see if it helps.
  2. Find a delicious (and healthy) way to eat cottage cheese. (Any suggestions friends???)
  3. Go swimming twice this week!
  4. Continue to stretch daily. Add to this: Arm weights!
  5. Make and stick to a meal plan!
  6. Use a coupon!
  7. Finish Think by Lisa Bloom, and start another book on my goodreads list!
Hmmm.... Three out of seven doesn't look so good, but I am ok with this. I took several photos (which is more than usual), found I liked cottage cheese mixed into a salad, went swimming once, and used a BUNCH of coupons stocking up on cereal

I'm not sure about swimming anymore. I honestly love it, but the BYU pool is super crowded in the evenings (FIVE TO A LANE!) and 6am is just sooo early.... I am completely exhausted for the rest of the day. I do need to do better though on the health front. I'll have to try something new this week! I never really did make a meal plan for last week, let alone stick to it, yet somehow everything worked out very nicely. I'm not sure I read a page of my book but I have to finish it by the 27th as that's when it's due back at the library :)

And now for this week's goals!
  1. Finish that darn book!
  2. Stretch every single day.
  3. Exercise for at least 15 minutes every day (I'm starting small!)
  4. Write something in my journal daily.
  5. Attempt to clean the kitchen blinds (without bleach!)
  6. Make a plan to eat less sugar (turns out I'm addicted).
  7. Dust off my sewing machine and finally get around to fixing Brian's suit pant seam.
  8. Figure out a schedule I'll stick to.
I'm starting small this week! But small and simple means I'm more likely to do it. Here I go!

Fact: Pregnancy Makes You Crazy.

Occasionally I think most people have little mind-blanks where they'll try and put the cereal in the fridge and the milk in the cupboard. But they usually realize it before they leave it in there. Throw in pregnancy and those little mind-blanks can turn into some really strange behavior....

Recently Brian's asked some weird questions like "Hun, why are the [measuring cups] in the [fridge]?" and I respond something along the lines of "I don't know, did you put them there?" And then after some thought I start vaguely remembering putting said item away... "Placenta brain" is a real condition. Due to the rise in estrogen, I understand.

But it's not just absentmindedness. Pregnant women's emotions are often completely irrational. Like when we went to our first ward activity last weekend. We had to leave within 5 minutes of arriving because I was starting to cry. The "tons of pizza" advertised ran out as we arrived and then no-one spoke to us for a full 5 minutes. 5 minutes! Looking back I realize we should've stuck around to meet people and then gone out to eat afterwards. But I was really hungry and I think pregnancy + hunger + missed expectations is probably a situation better to avoid in public!

Poor Brian.

This morning was probably the craziest thing. I had a sudden urge to chop off all my hair. This isn't unusual. But usually I deliberate for a while and then trim some of the dead ends and I'm feeling good. The urge is assuaged.

Well, that didn't happen this morning.

Several inches later I realize it's too late and that I'm not actually a trained or naturally talented hair-dresser. I will post pictures once it's fixed...

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Loving Lately...

1. My husband! 

He is so thoughtful, patient, fun, and not to mention, (**swoon**) incredibly handsome :)

2. Food. -I am ridiculously hungry. ALL. THE. TIME!! Cereal, sandwiches, bread, fruit, candy... I can't see a picture of it without wanting it.

I would LOVE some fish & chips with lots of vinegar and baked beans right now... Yum!!

3. Feeling baby boy kick :) It's reassuring and strangely nice. I can't wait til Brian can feel him too!

4. Free Stuff! I am becoming "one of those" I'm afraid. I am out of the closet. I'm especially liking the new concept of printable coupons :)

5. Colbie Caillat's new song, Brighter Than The Sun. I LOVE IT! I hope you will too!

Friday, January 20, 2012

Coupon Triumph!

I am so proud of myself. After two pitiful attempts, I have finally achieved couponing success! I was going to describe what happened in the first two attempts, but right now I would rather share the victory!

Printable Coupons!
The Booty! 10 boxes of cereal for $9, and then the go-lean for $1.99.
Here's what I did:

First I went to a coupon site. I used the swagbucks coupon page but this site works just as well and you don't have to register with them:
  • on the left hand side, click the "food" category and then click next until you see the $1 off 2 boxes of cheerios
  • then print. I think the only thing you have to do here is download the coupon printer if you don't have it already, you don't have to sign up. 
  • then go back to coupons and find the coupon again (they let you print out 2) and print it again.

Next I went to to:
  • this one you will have to register for but it's quick and no downloading necessary. I made up a fake DOB.
  • scroll down til you find the $1.10 off 2 boxes of cheerios
  • and the .85 cents off of fiber 1 (If you'll eat it)
  • print each twice. 
Relatively quick and easy! It was so much fun seeing the price drop almost $6 with the coupons, plus they were already on sale at 1.49 each when you buy 10!! 

NOTE: With these printable coupons you will end up with 8 boxes of some kind of cheerio and 2 boxes of fiber 1. Some of the cheerio varieties (like the queer-sounding "multigrain with peanut butter" are not included on the coupon. Unless you have separate coupons, you won't be able to get the golden grahams or kashi cereal either :)

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

168 Hours: A Very Lifestyle-Changing Book

I've been wanting to write about this book for a while!

168 Hours: You Have More Time Than You Think by Laura Vanderkam came at a time when I really needed it.


You might wonder why a person who is not going to school or working, who has no children (yet!) would read a book about time-management.... I admit, I think it's aimed at, well, busier people than myself, but I honestly feel like the more "spare" time I have, the worse use I make of it.

Vanderkam has the reader write down a list of dreams; things they have always wanted to do or try or improve. My list includes things like: Take Brian to the French Riviera, Be able to run 5 miles comfortably, re-learn the piano, wake up early, and stay on top of laundry. She encourages that you make a list of 100 things, and then keep going. Being pregnant and poor, some of these things will have to wait. But it gave me a great idea of what kind of activities bring me joy, and what kind of lifestyle is important to me.

She then has you record everything you do for a week! I honestly didn't do this part very well. Certainly not for an entire week, but I felt like the point came across loud and clear: I have SO MUCH TIME! And I was accomplishing barely anything! It particularly hit home that there are so many things on my "dreams" list that I can do now, that I was simply not doing, because of the way I managed my time.

Then Vandekam tells the stories of incredibly successful, incredibly busy people who still "have the time" to go on long hike once each week, train for marathons, read to their children, or write a novel in a year. It really was mind-boggling what these people accomplish, on top of their regular full time work.

I think I understood her point pretty well by this part of the book. The rest of the book consists of advice. Vanderkam encourages people to focus on their "core competencies", meaning things we excel and love to do, and minimize everything else. She has a heavy focus on outsourcing, particularly housework! I don't think some of her suggestions will work for my lifestyle (and budget!), but they were interesting all the same.

Overall, it was well-written and very informative, and I am convinced that it would help anyone re-evaluate not only how they spend their time, but their lifestyle and priorities. Since reading it I have been much more aware of what I do with my time, and whether it is filled with positive activities and worthwhile pursuits. I definitely recommend it!

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

This Week's Goals! (1/16-1/22)

I'm so glad I posted my goals last week. It definitely helped me stay motivated knowing that I would be publicly following up on them!

Unfortunately, I didn't quite accomplish all of them so you'll notice a little overlap. Here they are:

  1. Take more pictures! This is our last year in Provo and I want to remember it! I'm going to try and remember to take my camera with me wherever we go and see if it helps.
  2. Find a delicious (and healthy) way to eat cottage cheese. (Any suggestions friends???)
  3. Go swimming twice this week!
  4. Continue to stretch daily. Add to this: Arm weights!
  5. Make and stick to a meal plan!
  6. Use a coupon!
  7. Finish Think by Lisa Bloom, and start another book on my goodreads list!
I'm really happy with what I accomplished last week. The bread was absolutely delicious, and definitely cheaper and healthier than store-bought. (Really easy too with a breadmaker!) Stretching was also really beneficial... I just felt healthier :) And swimming. I'd forgotten how much I enjoy it. 


Recent Adventures!

This month has been so wonderful! I am loving 2012 already!

Here are a few more not-as-exciting-as-having-a-baby updates!

1.  I am becoming ginormous! You may have noticed the lack of pictures of me on the blog recently. Well, it's hard to keep a pregnancy quiet after a certain number of weeks! Here is me just the other day... It might look like 3 different weeks (as I look progressively bigger!) but apparently different angles and positions either hide/exaggerate the bump!
@ 20 weeks
Note the heavenly sweat pants. Sooo necessary right now!

2.  Yesterday I felt the baby KICK FOR THE FIRST TIME!! (At least the first time that I've recognized!) I am so excited! And since then he hasn't stopped! It's a little weird... it feels like a tiny muscle spasm a couple of inches below my belly button... but it is amazing!!

3.  I am terrible at taking photos, especially at special moments... like birthdays for example! Brian's party was fun. We had some awesome people stop by. Luckily Brian didn't mind that most of the night was spent talking about our baby boy, and watching the DVD the tech gave us! It was fun. We ate, drank, and were perfectly merry. I even whipped up some last minute decorations! Hehe. (When most people use the term "whipped up" it usually means they magically and modestly produced something amazing from nothing. I am not so modest. They were makeshift and kind of funny, but definitely added to the atmosphere!) 

I don't know why, but Brian's face in a bunch of balloons is simply hilarious to me...
Definitely my favorite!

Birthday cards and some random facts about the birthday boy!
Hopefully you can a make a few of them out, as they are pretty random and funny!
4. We moved! (This list is apparently not in chronological order....) We love our new place. We're only a few blocks (well, 5) away from the complex where we used to live. It's fun a weird because other than vacations, that's where we'd lived our entire marriage thus far. So far I am loving it. We are in a basement apartment, but there is plenty of natural light (more than our last place actually!), and although it's a little chilly sometimes the utilities are included! (Meaning we can crank up the heat as much as we please.) I mostly love the kitchen. It's been re-modeled recently and it's my fave place to be!

I love this photo! Brian is about to clean our oven before me moved.
Brian is using his lab goggles and my fabulous rubber gloves for protection. Unfortunately the gloves didn't survive but the oven looked AMAZING!

Here's another pic of my belly but with the lovely kitchen left in it!
LOVE it!
5.  Date night last Friday! Because We spent half of Thursday at the doctor's, and the other half celebrating Brian's birthday, our date night was spent in the library! (Inspired by a recent devotional by the Samuelsons.) 

On the way there we walked by the office where Brian works. Have I mentioned this before? Brian is a Freshman Mentor and he LOVES it! (Evident from his expression in the photo...)

If you look closely in the reflection you can see I'm still wearing the sweats... ummm... yeah....
Later on I saw myself in a bathroom mirror and vowed never to wear them in public again! haha or at least buy some cute ones that actually fit...

Fantastic poster.
(As much as I hate seeing leggings worn as pants there are definitely a lot more important things going on in the world to read about!!)

Us in our adjoining cubicles! Precious!
6.  I guess the last thing I want to add to this already-huge post, is that Brian & I like to read together. We've just finished Sir Gawain and the Green Knight and just started Machiavelli's The Prince. Both are from the honor's reading list. Often, Brian does the dishes and I read to him after dinner until he's done. Brian was even the one who suggested it! It's really fun! And not just because I get out of the dishes :)

Last Week's goals!

Here's how I did on my last week's goals!

1. Stretch morning and night (I must have the tightest ham strings in the world.)
Stretched my hams at least twice daily except for one day when I only did it once. I haven't felt as much tightness in my lower back and my flexibility has visibly improved!
2. Go swimming at the BYU pool at least once. -I've never swam (swum?) there before and am a little intimidated....
Tuesday was the day! Dragged myself up at 6am to get there for a full 30 minutes :) I was so sleepy the rest of the day but my muscles felt great!
3. Plan something special for Brian's Birthday :)
Brian had a great birthday! The ultrasound was definitely the highlight of the day, but we really enjoyed having friends over that evening with food, cake, and a few makeshift decorations!
4. Use a coupon for the first time in my life. Over the holidays I watched several episodes of "Extreme Couponing" and am determined to start paying less for groceries!
Sad story! We finally got our new printer up and running, printed a plethora of coupons, and yet when we got to the store we found that even with the coupons we could get a better deal elsewhere! However, I did give a man in line my 75 cents off milk coupon (it was expiring and we already had enough) so that maybe counts for something...? 
5. Hang out with some specific awesome ladies.
Yes! I got to spend time with some good friends this past week! I was especially excited to see friends from our previous ward on Saturday for a Stake RS activity. It was wonderful.
6. Make some bread. Try a half white, half wheat combo. Yum!
Success! I only made it a few days ago and it's already gone! I have some more in the breadmaker rising now. The half and half combo turned out tastier and a better texture than the white! 
7. Finish "Think" by Lisa Bloom.
Not even close! But I'm in the middle so I should have it read pretty quickly now. 

Friday, January 13, 2012

We are so happy to announce...

Brian & I are so happy to announce that we are going to have an addition to our family! We are so grateful for this amazing blessing!

Our due date is about May 28th, so right now I'm just over 20 weeks, about 5 months along. Because we're far enough along, yesterday we were able to have another ultrasound to find out the gender!

11 Week Ultrasound
20 Weeks! (Taken Yesterday!)

We're having a BOY!!! 
We were both so excited to find out that we're going to have a little boy!!

One of the coolest things was that the tech let Brian "drive", meaning have a go with the scanner! It was Brian's birthday yesterday, too! And what a wonderful present he got! He did a great job. On the DVD it shows when Brian is "driving" and he got better shots than the tech!

We are both so grateful for this healthy baby joining our family! What a great year 2012 will be!

Saturday, January 7, 2012

My Weekly Goals

I am so happy about this new year! We have a lovely new apartment and a new beginning in so many ways. I really do love the idea of a fresh start.

I think that posting my weekly goals on my blog and then following up on them will help me be more accountable. They're not necessarily life-changing things, but things I'd like to accomplish, things I want to try, and things I want to improve. Here are this week's:

  1. Stretch morning and night (I must have the tightest ham strings in the world.)
  2. Go swimming at the BYU pool at least once. -I've never swam (swum?) there before and am a little intimidated....
  3. Plan something special for Brian's Birthday :)
  4. Use a coupon for the first time in my life. Over the holidays I watched several episodes of "Extreme Couponing" and am determined to start paying less for groceries! 
  5. Hang out with some specific awesome ladies.
  6. Make some bread. Try a half white, half wheat combo. Yum!
  7. Finish "Think" by Lisa Bloom. 

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