Family Camping Organization

Today's post comes with a warning for the photo allergic... this post has a ton of photos, but with the intent to share the tips for camping organization I've acquired. Also, I wanted to lug my big girl camera to shoot this but with sketchy weather I didn't want to risk it getting wet or having to leave it in a hot car all week. So phone photos it was. 

So if you're interested... continue. 

If not... don't hate me. 

But without further chatting here's how we organize our campsite. 

As a family this is our 2nd year of week long camping. Before this I've camped with friends and Jeremy has as well. We just never camped together. So while we are new to camping together we aren't new to camping in general. I'm pretty certain the two of us logged more ours in the woods as children than on pavement.

The "It's Been a Hot Minute" Baby Update

Major pregnancy brain, I looked at this photo for a good bit and suddenly realized the first one was week 18, not 19. Oops!  

But whoa at how rounded out I got in just two weeks, hopefully it's just camp food and gets in check lol! 

18/20 Week Pregnancy Update

Size: Baby B is the size of a roast chicken and weighs 12.699 oz according to the Ava app. 

Due Date: November 2 (measured for Nov 6 at the ultrasound, but they aren't changing it). I'm betting I have the baby in October. 

Heartbeat: At my appointment last week it was 147. 

Symptoms: Indigestion is a beast. If I get hot, hungry, or worn out I tend to just shut down. Walking to the showers during our camping trip after helping take down the tent had me showering in the handicap stall and sitting... then coming back and sitting in the car. It took a few snacks and a lot of cold air before I felt like myself again. Funny though because setting up didn't phase me. Hence I'm blaming the heat. 

Currently Missing: Sweets. I'd love some cake but if I delve too deep into sugar I feel really bad. It gets my indigestion going and I immediately feel like puking.

Cravings and Favorite Foods: Raw veggies dipped in my girlfriends dill dip is heavenly. The Walmart brand sweet potato and beet chips are even great in it.

Sleep: Good, I just get up 2-3 times to pee. This was only an issue when camping because 1) I wasn't driving to the bathhouse and 2) raccoons were running a muck. I peed at a tree several times.

Food Aversions: 
Mainly just sweets, but that isn't an aversion it just doesn't sit well with me. Chicken isn't my favorite but I can tolerate it grilled now. The Tyson Chicken Nugges my child eats makes me want to fall over and croak at this point though. They just stank. Stink isn't a strong enough term for how they smell.

Exercise: Granted last week it was all mild hiking and swimming because we were camping, but I'm back at it in the gym. Right now I can do slow cardio on the Faster Way cardio days, but I love the weight lifting. I just have to make sure I wear my maternity support belt and get on the massage bed at Planet Fitness after the fact. I'm about to throw in a ton of squats every day though because Ina May suggests 300 a day. I doubt I'll hit that number today, but it's worth doing a ton of them to prep for childbirth.

Reading/Baby Related Classes and Prep:
Mama Natural Week by Week Guide to Pregnancy and Childbirth
Ina May Gaskin's Guide to Childbirth

I'm now flipping through two Bradly Method books, Husband Coached Childbirth and Natural Childbirth the Bradley Way. Any extra comfort and position tips for labor are more than welcome. I'm constantly ear marking pages to prep for what's coming up. I'm about to start reading the Mom's On Call 0-6 Month book to try and find myself a more relaxed way to get on a schedule and sleep train. Baby Wise basically got the job done but I was so entirely stressed out because I felt the need to be so ridged that I want to take a different approach. My girlfriend suggested this, we were both big BW with our first, and she said she felt more relaxed following this schedule and method.

Weight: At the last appointment I'd only gained about 6 lbs and I am shocked. Shocked that it's only been 6, I was a baby beluga on the last go around.

Movement: Anytime I sit still I get kicked half to death. Jeremy hasn't felt it yet, but I can't have anything in my bladder or this child kicks me and I just about wet my pants.

Maternity Clothing: All day every day. I mix in some non maternity but I don't like the restriction of regular pants.

Gender Guess: I honestly have nothing. Not a clue. Heart rate says girl, but it's the same range Harrison was in so that means absolutely nothing. My OB suggested the Chinese Gender Calendar to guess and it's also a mixed bag. Here's why... I got pregnant technically Jan 26 at the age of 31. But I wouldn't have technically conceived until Feb on the verge of turning 32 at the end of the month. One says girl the other says boy. Basically the child will have to get out to see what we landed.

Meal Pinning Monday

After VBS and the week of camping... here are a few actual meals I am actually cooking!

[What is Meal Pinning Monday?]
MPM is how I meal plan for our little family. I once spent a lot of time searching the web and my recipe books hunting for new recipes and ideas for what to cook every week. Then, Pinterest came along and made meal planning much easier for me. Every weekend I look over what I have pinned the prior week and decide what I would like to cook and make my grocery list from these recipes. MPM came about as a way to share what I am cooking, and to also see what others are cooking every week to hopefully get even more dinner ideas from other bloggers. If you don't pin your recipes feel free to just share what you are cooking.

Saturday - Grilled Chicken with Asian Chopped Salad (easy peasy premade salad kit)

Sunday - Jeremy's choice for Father's Day

Monday - The White Chicken Chili I have yet to make

Tuesday - leftovers

Wednesday - Grilled Chicken with Green Beans and Roasted Potatoes

Thursday - Chicken and Sausage Creole - an old blog recipe that needs an update

Friday - leftovers

Saturday - Chili Lime Chicken with Salad, Rice, Avocado, and Tomatoes

Sunday - Paleo Plantain Beef Pie

Breakfast - Avocado Pudding

Lunch - Burger Bowls

6 Beauty Tips to Do in Advance That Will Have You Looking Stunning

Today's guest post was submitted by Kelly Halls. It's all about beauty tips for wedding day prep, but let's be honest with it being wedding season we can all benefit from a little beauty prep for these big events!

6 Beauty Tips to Do in Advance That Will Have You Looking Stunning on Your Wedding Day

The engagement might have only just happened and the wedding is still a year away, but it is never
too early to start thinking about that wedding health and beauty regime that can leave you glowing
on your big day.
We all know it can often take a while to see results from new diets and skin treatments, so there is no
time like the present to start making those little lifestyle tweaks to prepare you for walking down the
From growing out your hair to incorporating a lot more drinking of water into your daily routine,
here are six beauty tips to do in advance that will have you looking stunning on your wedding day.

Start growing out your hair now

If you are looking to have long, healthy, luscious hair like Rapunzel, then the longer you can grow it
out for, the better. Start the process immediately and remember that to keep it healthy, you’ll still need
to have a few trims throughout the growing process in the run up to the big day.

Whiten your teeth

The average number of photographs taken at a wedding is a staggering 3,000. That is a lot of smiling
which means your teeth are going to be on show for a lot of the time. Teeth whitening can help them
to look their best and there are many products that allow you to whiten your teeth at home, rather
than seeking the help of a costly professional. Whichever option you decide to take, make sure you
leave yourself up to two months to achieve the perfect smile and avoid any tooth-sensitivity close to
the ceremony.

Have your eyebrows shaped

Just like teeth and hair, your eyebrows are an area that you need to start working on well in advance.
Seek the opinion of a professional who will be able to tell you the shape of eyebrows best suited to
your face. After a few months, they’ll have your eyebrows clean and beautiful which will help in the
framing of your wedding makeup.

Use Epsom Salts on your skin

You are probably wondering What Is Epsom Salt? Epsom Salt is made up of magnesium and sulfate
and can do wonders for your skin. It works as a powerful face cleaner when a half a teaspoon is mixed
into your regular nightly cleansing cream, it can be used to improve the potency of a regular face
mask, it can help you exfoliate when massaged over wet skin and it can help soak up excess oil from
your hair when added to oily hair shampoo.

Drink a lot more water

By drinking a lot of water every day, you’ll be helping your body wash out unwanted toxins which will
leave your skin with a healthy glow. Staying hydrated is one of the best ways we can look after

Adopt a healthy diet

You’ll probably be hitting the gym hard in the run up to the wedding, but if you really want to
achieve that dream body before your wedding, then adopting a healthy diet is a must. You don’t need
to live off salad for the next six months, just avoid sugar, salt and processed foods which aren’t good
for weight loss or clean living.

Pepper Jelly Cheese Dip

I originally posted this recipe 100 years ago with no photo, so today I'm bringing it back new and renewed... with a photo.

The original recipe was scalped off of my Sunday School teacher in West Monroe at one of our monthly get-togethers. I hope you enjoy it as much as my people love cheese and Ritz.

In case you aren't of the Louisiana breed, here's the pepper jelly I use. You can use any brand, just jalapeno pepper jelly. I had some pineapple jalapeno jelly in the fridge that I was tempted to use. That on some cream cheese... amazing.

To make the dip just combine two softened blocks of cream cheese with 2 cups of shredded cheddar and 2 sliced green onions. Top it with crushed Ritz crackers and chopped bacon.

After baking top it with melted pepper jelly and serve with more Ritz crackers. This is an easy appetizer and is whipped up in 20 minutes with only about 5 of those being active cooking minutes. 

Pepper Jelly Cheese Dip

2 8oz blocks of cream cheese, softened
2 cups of shredded cheddar cheese
2 green onions, sliced
8 Ritz crackers, crushed
8 slices of bacon, chopped up
1/2 cup of pepper jelly

Preheat over to 350 degrees. In a pie plate combine the first 3 ingredients and smooth it out across the dish. Top with crushed Ritz and chopped bacon. (If you're making this ahead just stop here until you're closer to serving)  Bake for 15 minutes. Towards the end of baking put 1/2 cup of pepper jelly into a microwave safe container, microwave for 30 seconds at a time, stirring, until melted.  As soon as the dip comes out of the oven evenly spread the melted pepper jelly over the top. Serve with Ritz or your favorite crackers.

TresOmega Pasta Round-Up

Just like last week, don't forget about the great deals form TresOmega during Celiac Awareness Month.


Four 5lb bags of pasta for $89.98 + free shipping (that's $24.50 per bag)

One case of pasta (12 boxes) for $39.48 + free shipping
(choose elbow, spaghetti, penne, fusili, or choose to mix and match)

Click >>> here <<< for the TresOmega Nutrition promotions! 

Find TresOmega on social media:


Here are a few yummy recipes, plus my own, that were submitted for the recipe contest back in the fall. I am definitely using up my giant pasta stash to make these very soon! 

1.  Brown Butter + Sage Chicken Penne Pasta

2. Creamy Pumpkin Alfredo Bacon Pasta

5. Party Sandwich Pasta - tastes just like the Kings Hawaiian Sandwiches.

Ideas to Beat the Pregnancy Swelling & High Blood Pressure

Last time I was pregnant I was lucky enough to have my 3rd trimester land in the cooler Louisiana months. I'd say cold, but it was a warm winter.

Even with that I had high blood pressure and more edema than I'd ever care to have again. So this time I'm doing a few things different in an effort to prevent the swell... and awful blood pressure for that matter.

Ideas to Beat Pregnancy Swelling & High Blood Pressure

First off, my doctor says high blood pressure is common in a first pregnancy and you have a much lower chance of suffering from it the second time. Fingers cross this holds true for me. I was induced early because I was steadily at a 146 over something and swollen as ever.

So far, the chances are already lower... but I'm not taking it at that and stopping.

1. Cucumbers & Watermelon

Any cold fruit and veg really. I bought a huge watermelon this week and am chopping it up this afternoon with plans to munch away. I am struggling to drink enough, so cold wet foods have been my friend. The upside, they've also seemed to help with my acid reflux. So step one... eat all the diuretic fruit and veg in a 10 mile radius.

I've actually come up with yet another cucumber recipe this pregnancy that I'm loving. I'll have to share it soon.

2. Maternity Swim Suits

I bought one and plan on sinking my big bottom in any reasonably deep puddle of water I can locate this summer. The floating really helps to relieve pressure and not only cools you off but helps with water retention.

3. Red Raspberry Leaf Tea

I originally ordered it to start drinking a cup a day just to help with labor and uterine toning. I took a tincture last pregnancy that I swore helps labor go as fast as it did for a first baby and this was in it. After doing a bit of reading it seems that RR Leaf Tea also helps with hypertension... all the more reason to drink it.

4. Roasted Dandelion Root Tea

This tea is a natural diuretic that is pregnancy safe. I like to brew up a cup and pour it into a 60 oz pitcher. Then I cut a lemon, squeeze it in, toss the squeezed lemon in, and add about 1/4 cup of cranberry juice. (the sugar free sort). I then fill up the container with filtered water and attempt to drink the entire 60 oz that day. This will make you have to potty ladies, but it is great to reduce swelling if you find you've been retaining fluid.

I woke up the other morning with lips too large for the 2nd trimester after an overly salty meal and this cured the problem.

5. Exercise & Massage

Why am I listing them together... because the gym actually has hydro-massage beds. Exercise is great for circulation and maintaining a healthy BP and the massage just gets those fluids moving around your body better.

I think these are my main things at the moment, if I remember something I'm up to that I forgot to mention I'll add it later.

But let me know what you did to keep the water weight off and your BP down during pregnancy.

TresOmega Sweet Recipes Round-Up

First off, don't forget about the great deals form TresOmega during Celiac Awareness Month. 


Four 5lb bags of pasta for $89.98 + free shipping (that's $24.50 per bag)

One case of pasta (12 boxes) for $39.48 + free shipping
(choose elbow, spaghetti, penne, fusili, or choose to mix and match)

Click >>> here <<< for the TresOmega Nutrition promotions! 

Find TresOmega on social media:


Now for the dessert round-up. 

I searched the internet looking for other bloggers who also participated in the recipe challenge back in the fall and here's what stuck out to me:

And because I can't leave out my own TresOmega dessert recipe...

Things that Make Me Say Yay!


It's been a week of a thousand Wednesdays. How it is actually Friday is beyond me.

So here are a few things that have made me uber happy lately.

>> Harrison has discovered his love of bubbles and now want to float in the tub. Last night I was asked to give him a bath about 30 minutes early. All because that baby needed to relax.

He seriously just lays there and floats now.

>> At first I wasn't sure about this kombucha brand, but I actually like it better than Dr. Pepper. It doesn't have the kombucha kick you think of and tastes like a Dr. Pepper but less sugary. 

>> Guess who finally halfway pulled up their winter garden... this girl. Except I haven't found it in me to start pulling carrots. That a lot of work. But I did discover the brussel sprout I planted two years ago finally decided to do something. Baby sprouts for one. 

>> I don't know how this happened, and yet it feels like it's been 400 weeks already at the very same time. My biggest question though is who on earth is this person, what personality will this child have?

Meal Planning Tuesday

It's Tuesday today, right?

Here's what we're eating this week...

[What is Meal Pinning Monday?]
MPM is how I meal plan for our little family. I once spent a lot of time searching the web and my recipe books hunting for new recipes and ideas for what to cook every week. Then, Pinterest came along and made meal planning much easier for me. Every weekend I look over what I have pinned the prior week and decide what I would like to cook and make my grocery list from these recipes. MPM came about as a way to share what I am cooking, and to also see what others are cooking every week to hopefully get even more dinner ideas from other bloggers. If you don't pin your recipes feel free to just share what you are cooking.

Monday - Cheeseburger Skillet (I also made a box of that Suddenly Pasta salad because I passed it and suddenly it was 1997)

Tuesday - Teacher Appreciation Day... Free Raising Canes people!

Wednesday - Against All Grain Sweet and Sour Meatballs, serving with Hawiian rolls and chips. 

Thursday - leftovers

Friday - Bow Tie Fiesta (using TresOmega pasta)

Saturday - We will be out and about so I'm not cooking

Sunday - leftovers


What's everyone else eating this week? 

I'm living in healthy limbo, some things appeal to me and others don't. A piece of grilled chicken with a veggie makes me want to gag. But hey, at least I can stand to smell food cooking again. 

Baby is the size of a cupcake... or a Chicken Salad Chick Crossaint

13 Week Pregnancy Update

Size: Baby B is the size of a cupcake. Depending on what app you ask. 

Due Date: November 2 (measured for Nov 6 at the ultrasound, but they aren't changing it). I'm betting I have the baby in October. 

Heartbeat: At my appointment last week it was 167. 

Symptoms: Indigestion is starting to ease... with constant medication. Which is a good sign, meds typically don't touch how I feel during pregnancy. Other odd things, my arms go numb when I sleep. The top arm too. When I'm awake my butt goes numb. It's a fun life people. There's also what I'm assuming is a cyst under my first finger, feels like a English Pea and hurts like the dickens when I mop. I'm really starting to feel like my monthly pregnancy appoints are just me listing my life complaints to the OB every time. Last pregnancy included.

Currently Missing: Being able to eat healthy all the time. Meat isn't a full aversion like it was last time, but it isn't that appealing. I can deal with beef but chicken is kinda gross. Not chicken salad though, just chicken cooked in a skillet. I weird. Let me live my life.

Cravings and Favorite Foods: The angels sang and plain water became appealing again this week. Don't get me wrong though, more than a few sips and my acid reflux is acting up again. Also, cucumbers with a tiny bit of low sodium soy sauce and tons of rice vinegar are the most amazing food on the planet.

Sleep: Good if I'm asleep by 8:30. I have to make up for the 1 AM insomnia that is going to hit for two hours. Anything less than a solid 8 and I feel like I've never slept a day in my life.

Food Aversions: 
Life I said before, not as bad as it was with Harrison. But I could legit be a vegetarian right now. Actually... I have been eating meat only at dinner. I could easily quit meat the rest of this pregnancy.

Exercise: Umm, still not yet. I could have done weights this week but it's been so busy that I'll likely only have time to do one of the workouts. I signed up for a yoga class since the last blog post but by the time rolled around I was too exhausted.

Reading/Baby Related Classes and Prep:
Mama Natural Week by Week Guide to Pregnancy and Childbirth

I need to refresh my memory and start reading Ina May Gaskin's Guide to Childbirth again. I put a hold on a a Bradley Method book at the library... but alas it says 0 of 0 available. So now I've placed a hold on a Lamaze one. Last time I only read Ina May so it's worth seeing what else is out there. Going to Bradley classes won't be doable, just for time sake and someone watching Harrison.

Weight: Still not looking.

Movement: I think I've felt that quickening movement twice this week.

Maternity Clothing: Finally got white jeans and my maternity life is now complete. Let's just hope the swimsuit I ordered works. Otherwise all maternity pants all the time. Tops, I go back and forth.

Here's a side by side for you:

It appears the only real difference is that my boobs caught the pregnancy bug really quick this round. They say you get into the pants quicker the second time... I was in my pregnancy bras almost instantly.

Now I'm afraid of what my nursing boobs are going to be.

TresOmega Deals for Celiac Awareness Month!

I've posted before about how much I love the TresOmega brand and how I initially discovered them on a Sam's Club run one day.

Then back in the fall I competed in their recipe competition and submitted two recipes, Cookie Butter Bread Pudding and Party Sandwich Pasta. 

So now that they are having a big sale for Celiac Awareness Month it's only fitting I share that with y'all too. If you caught my Insta Stories this past weekend you might have seen me making Mac and Cheese with their elbow pasta.

What I love about them compared to other brands is that their pasta tastes like regular ole white pasta. My hubby who refuses to eat whole wheat pasta actually likes their pasta. Now, if I made him dinner with the other gluten free brands I've tried in the past I'd hear something about it. TresOmega though, it seriously doesn't taste any different. Their pasta even holds up well when cooking, you all know you've tried certain gluten free brands and they just seem to fall apart after they've cooked. I could honestly make you a pasta dish with any of the TresOmega pastas and you wouldn't know the difference, I don't know how they do it but you can't tell it's missing the gluten.

To give you a bit of background that isn't just my opinion...
TresOmega Nutrition pasta is made from three ingredients - organic Royal Bolivian Quinoa, organic Amaranth, and organic white rice. Their pasta has even won the Masters of Taste Award that is judged by chefs across America.

So all that to say, throughout the month of May I'll be posting recipe roundups of my favorite TresOmega recipes... and y'all there are a ton. The bloggers that participated in their recipe challenge hit it out of the park with what they made. I'll also be reminding you about their deals on pasta this month. So stay on the lookout for deal reminders and recipe round-ups every week in May!

For starters, here's what they have up for grabs this month. I got my case in last week and we are now set for pasta through the end of the year.


Four 5lb bags of pasta for $89.98 + free shipping (that's $24.50 per bag)

One case of pasta (12 boxes) for $39.48 + free shipping
(choose elbow, spaghetti, penne, fusili, or choose to mix and match)

Click >>> here <<< for the TresOmega Nutrition promotions! 

Find TresOmega on social media:

LAFMB :: 8 Restaurants For a Family Date Night

Another Wednesday LAFMB post share for you.
Date nights.
There’s always an emphasis as a married, dating, or engaged couple to go on dates. Granted dating pre-kids is way easier. It’s the post-kid dates that are hard to come by.
Dating then becomes more complicated when your built-in babysitters live roughly 3-9 hours away. At this point, free date nights are few and far between.

Friday Five

I literally up with that N'SYNC Friday night song stuck in my head. 

Let's get this party started.

[O N E]

I'm having more and more days where the indigestion doesn't nearly cripple me. HIGH FIVE! The downside is I keep seeing people posting about having their babies today... I want to have my baby and get rid of pregnancy symptoms. I'll love the baby dearly, but I got really excited that the moment Harrison evacuated I immediately felt human again. It was instant reflux relief. Come on November!

[T W O]

I don't know how this information hasn't been delivered to me before now, but A-Bears in New Iberia has the best burger and fries I've had since Fish Fry in Vidalia. I told Jeremy I wanted to get a hamburger again today. He doesn't think I'm serious. I'm serious. Meal plan for next week... all A-Bears burgers.

You Vidalia people know what I'm talking about, Fish Fry had the best burgers... this place actually lives up to Fish Fry. Mom, I'm taking you next time you're here.

[T H R E E]

We have a second house showing today, I'm so so so so so praying these people buy. Mainly because I don't want to be big pregnant when we sell or in the newborn stage either. That would be something less than exciting. They're coming back to discuss the living area. Y'all out living area is strange and I really feel like I need to be there and explain why the house is laid out that way. Would that be weird?

I adore our house, really I do. I'd take it with me elsewhere even. But, the odd thing about the living area is that in the original house design what we are using as an office/toy area was intended to be the kitchen. The space across from that would have been the dining area. Which means our kitchen that was built on is massive... and the pantry is in the hall by the living room. Strange, but an incredible amount of room. I might cry when I leave the kitchen and living room pantry.

[F O U R]

Grande Lash serum... it works. I need to take an after photo but it has done wonders for my lashes. I got mine from Influenster to test and I might be buying more.

[F I V E]

Red Stick Moms Blog Bloom event is tomorrow and I'm getting to hang with my bestie!! Yay for girl time.

What I've Watched Lately

We recently ditched cable, so most of these can be watched without it. In fact only one was on and not even really on cable... we had HBO for about 10 minutes before we divorced Cox. 

Great Canal Journeys

This show follows Timothy West and his wife down several canals in the UK as well as Europe. I put off watching it for weeks and it kept popping up in my recommended shows on YouTube. If you like BBC docs than look up the Allthemed Docs channel on YouTube, they post all the shows we can't get in the US. Well, that we are supposed to have access to in the US. Anyway, this show is so good. The series begins on their 50th wedding anniversary year and they travel several canals in the UK. They brings their kids on board once and basically talk about their life while giving history of where they are. They are incredibly sweet and seeing an 83 year old woman work locks is crazy interesting for some reason.

Call the Midwife

The new season recently came back on PBS. When we cancelled cable I made sure we purchased a subscription to PBS, there are too many shows I really love on there. I've watched this show from the beginning and honestly it's just as good, no matter who has left or been killed off. This season has me crying just as much as the others, and I'm A) not a crier and B) not into those kinds of shows.

Side note: I think the blonde was pregnant during filming + they just sent her away because of an alcohol issue. Also known as "you're showing too much" which makes me think she's pregnant.

Also, I feel like there was along pause before they got this season going, like they skipped a year or something.

The Jinx

This is the HBO documentary (hence watched it pre ditching cable) but if you can get your hands on it definitely watch. I love a good murder and this guy has seemingly gotten out of several by the skin of his teeth. Supposedly killed his wife. Supposedly killed a neighbor. HBO did a great job on this one, it's definitely worth the watch.

The Crown

This is a wildly popular Netflix series, almost a docu series. I've been meaning to look into some of the details they give because the books I've read over the years didn't go into detail about some of the things Phillip did.

Which, if you know anything about Charles you'd know that he was famous for telling Diana that he wouldn't be the first Prince of Wales to not have a mistress. Not that Phillip was a POW, but they aren't known for being that loyal. Except Albert, he might have been the last. But Albert was also a moral nut because his father was so awful... his actual father was supposedly his uncle. But that kind of leads me to the next show and possibly my favorite.


PBS really filled the hole that was left when Downton ended with this series. If you like royalty, anything 1800s, or Masterpiece Classic in general you'll love this. It's so well made and covers topics about Victoria that you don't typically see in the run-of-the-mill BBC documentaries. I could watch and re-watch this because it's just that good. The way I would re-watch Downton before the new season started... this is exactly the same. This portrays Victoria and Albert's relationship so well, I wish it went more in depth with her as a mother because she historically hated babies, but it's still great.

There might be a common thread here. I'm clearly an 80 year old.

The Baby is the Size of a Fig and You Look Like a Potbelly Pig

Also known as 11 weeks.

Expect highly professional photos this pregnancy, I had our family photographer take the following. Don't ask me for her number, she's already booked through the year. Super busy woman.

In other news...

11 Week Pregnancy Update

Size: Baby B is the size of a fig or a gherkin pickle depending on what app you reference. 

Due Date: November 2 (measured for Nov 6 at the ultrasound, but they aren't changing it). I'm betting I have the baby in October. 

Symptoms: Indigestion for DAYS! Oh it's something else, I've hit 3rd trimester misery from Harrison right out the gate this time and let me tell you I can't wait for November. I think it gives me a false sense of nausea, either way it's restricted what I want to eat. Generally if it's cooked at my house I don't want to eat it. I'm also super exhausted, not because I'm chasing Harrison, he isn't that sort of kid. I'm just tired by the end of the day from teaching. I've been pretty useless. Smells are the devil and I'm breaking some sort of rule I'm sure, but I've got my Scentsy in my classroom to cancel out the awful cafeteria smell. That alone makes me want to die. Vick's Vapor Rub is basically my best friend & at night I've got a handful of pill... Prilosec at night and Zantac in the morning. 

Currently Missing: Mid-rare steak, that's a joke. I really think that if I buy quality meat I should be able to cook it how I want. I'm more likely to die of listeria from Blue Bell than a ribeye.

Cravings and Favorite Foods: Hint of Lime Tostitos are life giving. Not to mention when I couldn't sleep last night I grabbed a piece of provolone cheese (dairy is supposed to help with sleep) and it was also amazing.

Sleep: Pretty great. I'm generally getting 8 - 8 1/2 hours a night. Anything less than 8 and I feel awful the next day. I've been taking Melatonin and early in pregnancy to prevent morning sickness I started taking some sleep aid I can't remember the name of... oh well. It helps though. The indigestion keeps me up some, but it's manageable if I get enough sleep.

Food Aversions:
I really prepared myself this pregnancy that it would be worse than last time. My OB warned me that this could be an issue, surprisingly it isn't. I haven't had true aversions like last time. Mainly nothing sounds good, but not my basically chips only diet of Harrison's pregnancy. I've found that if I don't eat early enough in the evening that I can only stomach a baked potato. A few weeks ago it was probably more just crackers and such. But that's to be expected.

Exercise: I did my Faster Way to Fat Loss Fit Pregnancy sprints workout the day before I had the virus and it's been rare since then. At least a month right now of zero workouts. House cleaning has even been hard, thanks exhaustion. I feel worse in the evenings, and now it's more from exhaustion than just sick, but I just don't have it in me to workout right now.

Reading/Baby Related Classes and Prep:
Mama Natural Week by Week Guide to Pregnancy and Childbirth

I'm headed to the Baton Rouge Moms Blog Bloom event this weekend and am actually going to be a part of the Virtual Bloom for the Lafayette Moms Blog next week. I think my topics are nursing and bathing, but I'd have to look again to confirm it. If you're interested I think the virtual one is free.

Weight: Week 8 was the last time I touched the scale. I haven't followed the Fit Pregnancy stuff at all so I don't even want to see what it says.  I'm mainly trying to keep things under control enough this go around to not gain 60 lbs and end up with hypertension again. Speaking of which, the terrible edema and hypertension last time means that I had to start taking baby aspirin this week to try and prevent that from happening again.

Movement: nada

Maternity Clothing: All maternity pants all the time. I haven't broken out the maternity tops so much yet, but the pants. The pants are what keep me going. I wasted zero time getting maternity pants on my butt this time. After going to work one day last pregnancy and suddenly having way too tight pants... wasn't doing that again. I've basically got everything I need for this pregnancy except a pair of white jeans. I think I can get by with just a pair of khaki, regular, black, and white jeans. For work anyway. Then I have two pair of shorts and a variety of tops, kimonos, and dresses to stretch out over this pregnancy. It doesn't help that I am having a summer pregnancy this time and the last one was a winter pregnancy... there aren't many tops I can reuse right now.

By the way if you see a pair of white skinny maternity jeans, send me a link. Dang Old Navy hasn't restocked their maternity line and they don't have my size. 

LAFMB :: Money Saving Meal Planning + a printable

I realize that meal planning is something I enjoy. I might be alone on this meal planning island, but out there I’m sure there is another mom looking for a way to make dinner an easier affair. 
Meal planning wasn’t always my thing; it came about in my college days when I was so broke that I only ate eggs, spinach, and feta cheese all sautéed together every night for dinner. The beginning of marriage wasn’t any easier; we were both in college and working at a restaurant, not the most lucrative job on the market. Fast forward a few more years and my husband and I were living off of our savings while he was in graduate school (for the first time). He’s now back at it again and working on a degree from the seminary in New Orleans. I like to say we are addicted to graduate school. 

Bubbles and Open Houses

I wish there was legit photo evidence that this weekend even happened, but alas, photo evidence isn't my M. O. lately.

Friday night we had dinner with friends and traipsed around town staying out way past Harrison's bedtime. Way past being 9pm. Surprisingly, or not so much, he did really well. I was telling Jeremy this, but being so nuts about routines and bed early on. Our once inflexible newborn who lost it 5 minutes before bedtime is now easy going and relaxed about things. Thank you Jesus for that!

Saturday we cleaned, and cleaned some more. I hadn't really deep cleaned the house in a few weeks, thanks pregnancy, and we had to prep for an open house. It was a blurry day of cleaning mixed with awful weather... I'm not even sure it really happened.

The only significant thing was Harrison taking his beloved super long bath. He's recently discovered bubbles won't kill you and asked for them that night. Before then there was a lot of yelling "Oh yuck!" Which is customary for anything Harrison isn't entirely fond of.

Which brings me to Sunday, church and open house. If we weren't regular church attendees then a Sunday open house would be a breeze. Heck if Jeremy didn't play music then prepping for the open house would be a breeze.

Instead Sunday morning goes like this: get ready, get house ready, put everything we own in the car that isn't nailed down, wake up child, put him in car and don't let him touch the ground, put dog up, leave.

Someone showed interest, but I won't believe a word of it until I see an offer. House selling isn't my cup of tea. When I want to do something I wanted it done yesterday, the wait for someone else to show up and buy something is just dreadful in my eyes.

Then there's the having a baby aspect which means I'd really love to sell and get settled into an apartment before the fall. The last thing I want is to be largely pregnant and moving, I did that once and it was more than enough for a lifetime.

I feel like I'm sounding like a Negative Nelly, but it's reality as far as the house goes. My cleaning schedule is always off because I 1) don't have the energy right now and 2) am cleaning based on when showings happen. Which speed cleaning on a Tuesday evening is not as enjoyable as cleaning on a Saturday morning when no one is awake yet.

Oh gosh, that brings me to this... I tried a Pinterest trick to remove dog urine smell. 12 year old dogs and bad weather aren't friends. It got the smell out, but it made such a mess. Anything that starts with baking soda should just set off the mess alarms in my head... but no, I continue to find the messiest Pinterest cures known to America.

It worked and I'm never doing it again.

Speaking of which, what's a good way to clean up dog pee that doesn't leave the floor slippery. I've been using our counter spray... but it's slippery. If I take the mop out too many times in a week I start rage mopping and that's not good for anyone.

In other new... who would like a nearly 12 year old dachshund with all her shots and a years worth of Heart Guard? She comes with a kennel and is great with families... just too old to tell you she needs in or out of the house most days. Kidding, but not entirely.

LAFMB :: Five Healthy Tips for Holiday Survival

Here's another oldie but goodie, and sorta fitting for Easter.


Meal Planning Tuesday... because life

This week is insanely easy and definitely leftover oriented.

Monday - Wednesday - Euna Mae's Cream Cheese Enchiladas

Thursday - Friday - Sesame Noodles with Mongolian Beef

Saturday - Sunday - Chicken Bacon Ranch Skillet with Roasted Potatoes

Like I said, super easy week. I'm starting to feel like I can tolerate food being cooked in the house and the enchiladas were a hit for me last night.

For breakfast I'm having Chocolate Chip Oatmeal Muffins. Lunch is just a bagged chopped salad and some yogurt. Trying to veer towards healthy again, I can't stand the idea of another 60 lb weight gain pregnancy.

The muffins are super easy:

2.5 cups old fashioned oats
1 cup plain greek yogurt
2 bananas
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 cup honey (I used 1/4 yesterday)
2 eggs
2 tbsp flax meal

Blend the oats in a food processor until a powder. Add in other ingredients until smooth. Toss in whatever additional items you'd like, I used dark chocolate chips. Scoop into a 12 muffin tin and bake at 350 for 20 minutes. 

Also if anyone has suggestions I want to hear them. I've been having trouble drinking enough, really bad indigestion this time. More than a few sips of water makes me feel sick. I'm thinking of making sugar free jello as a way to get more water in.

Also. Also. (otherwise known as P.S.S.) I'm starting baby aspirin soon to try and prevent having hypertension again this pregnancy... has anyone done this and had success? Tips and tricks are more than welcome. This mama has zero desire to swell up like a whale again from water edema.