Friday, May 23, 2014

Happy weekend:

Happy Friday, friends! This week has felt exceptionally long so I am even happier than usual for the arrival of the weekend. What are you doing? Any fun plans? My due date is this Saturday (!!!) so we will be sitting around the house, relaxing, and enjoying what may be the last few days of just the two of us (well, three including Tillie). We really got on our to-do list the last two weeks and are feeling like, finally, we're ready. Or as ready as we're ever going to be, I guess. At this point, it's just a waiting game (and believe me, this is one game I am done playing).

Here's a peek into what we've been up to lately:
  1. Went to the doctor last week (and again this morning). She says all signs point to this boy's arrival any day now.
  2. Both K & L are home (from Delaware and South Korea, respectively). This is a very rare occurrence and I have been enjoying our Order reunion. It is nice to have all your oldest friends in one place from time to time.
  3. We finally got the nursery done (or as done as it's going to get) and my mom brought us the wooden cradle from Germany that I slept in as a newborn, so we are ready to go in the baby-sleeping department.
  4. Is it wrong that I've eaten a molten volcano cake from Chili's more than once this week? It's just so good, I can't help myself.
  5. I straight up wore jeans to work pretty much every day this week. And no one said anything. Not that they didn't notice, I just think maybe they were scared they'd incur the wrath of the seriously pregnant lady. That's one thing I'm going to miss about being pregnant: being able to get away with pretty much anything.
Have a great weekend, everyone! Fingers crossed we'll have big news to share come Monday morning!

Wednesday, May 21, 2014


With the impending arrival of this little baby (seriously, any day now!), A and I have spent a lot of time discussing how much we feel comfortable sharing with the world and how exactly we want to share that information. We've done a lot of reading, talking, and researching and we've come to a conclusion that a lot of you won't like: it won't be a lot. Allow me to explain.

I've never felt comfortable sharing photos on the internet. I have always been reluctant to show faces, names, and any details, really. Maybe it's a control thing. Actually, yes, it is a control thing. I just don't like the fact that I can't control who sees what. And now that we will be responsible for a tiny little human, I feel even more strongly about it. So, in order to protect him as best we can, we've decided not to post anything that identifies him in any way. No photos, no names, no details about him at all really. You just never know who's watching. There are a lot of creepers out there. I realize that many of you may think this may be a little extreme. There are many out there who don't feel the same way we do and that's just fine. To each his own. No judgement. But for us and our family, this feels right.

We still want to find a way to share updates of our family in this space, I think we just have to find a balance that makes sense for us. We have to find what feels comfortable. This blogger does a really great job of sharing updates on her children while still protecting their identities. I think I'd be comfortable with something similar so we'll just have to feel it out and see where we end up. Lots of vague phrases, I know, but it's hard to be firm on something that hasn't happened yet.

We realize that since a lot of our family and close friends live far away, they might only get the chance to see little M through photos and videos. And while our choice might rob you of that opportunity here, we want you to know that we are looking into other ways to safely and securely share those moments with you. We aren't sure what the answer is yet -- password protected sites, shared cloud storage, email -- but we're working on it. Again, this will probably be a process of trying a few options and seeing what works best. All that we ask is that, if you have access to these photos and videos, you respect our decision about privacy. Feel free to download and print photos, just don't repost them anywhere, especially in a public setting. And we ask that you refrain from posting any photos or videos of him that you may take yourself.

We promise we won't completely ignore the fact that we have a new baby. That wouldn't be an accurate representation of our lives. So, we will still be sharing our experience of becoming new parents and the things we learn along the way, along with other life events including home improvements and personal accomplishments (hello returning to running!). And thanks for supporting our decision and continuing to visit this space!

Monday, May 19, 2014


I have a confession. We've been neglecting our dining room since we moved in. We stacked lots of boxes in there and used it as a sort of purgatory for things that still needed to be unpacked and gone through. We told ourselves we'd get around to it. And then we just left it there. It became the place where we stored things we didn't know what to do with to get them out of the way. We've been avoiding this room and eating all our dinners on the couch in front of the TV, partly because we're lazy and partly because there isn't a path to the dining room table.

Here's what it looked like when we moved in:

And here's what it is looked like in its sorry state:

This room has always kind of depressed me because it's so dark and sad. I mean, look at all that wood paneling. And don't pay any attention to the tape on the floor -- we've been mapping out our new laundry nook/mud room.

We finally decided to do something about it, though. So we picked up some paint, enlisted the help of my mom (I'm only good for the middle portion of the wall these days), and got to it. It actually ended up taking three weekends because we had to do multiple coats and paint all the trim but, in the end, we got it done. I was banned from the second go-round of painting because my back started bothering me. The council took a vote and decided it was too much physical exertion for me, so I was forced to retire my paintbrush.

It's almost done. We just have a few places where we need to do some touching up. We should have some photos to share soon but I am really pleased with how it turned out -- so much more cheerful and lighter. A definite improvement. And even though there are about a million other things we still need to do to this space, I think we will be using it much more often.

Here's the to-do list for this room, in case you're interested:
  1. Clean brick on fireplace
  2. Paint mantel
  3. Remove ceiling fan and replace with large pendant light
  4. Remove other light fixtures
  5. Paint paneling
  6. Paint trim
  7. Add chair railing
  8. Replace flooring with hardwood
  9. Build built-ins on both sides of fireplace
  10. Add sconces above built-ins
  11. Find art for above fireplace
  12. Build wall with wide doorway to space?
  13. Window treatments
  14. Find rug
  15. Upgrade furniture (farmhouse table + buffet + chairs)

Friday, May 16, 2014

Happy weekend:

Happy Friday, everyone! This week has felt particularly long -- I'm glad the weekend is finally here! What are you doing with your days off? We have a few little touch ups to make on the newly-painted dining room and Andrew has big plans to work in the yard. And we've scheduled some sit-on-the-couch-and-catch-up-on-Downton-Abbey time. With all the packing and moving that went down this winter, we fell behind. But thanks to a friend who lent us her DVDs, we will be catching up. So, no spoiler alerts!

One of my good friends (and 1/4 of the Order) is back home from S. Korea. It has been entirely too long since I got to spend some quality time with her and I am looking forward to catching up, even if our hanging out includes sitting around and eating junk food. Oh how I've missed you, Reech!

Have a great weekend, friends! Get out there and enjoy the nice weather!

Monday, May 12, 2014

New reads:

This week, I'm reading An Echo in the Bone by Diana Gabaldon. It's the 7th book in the Outlander series. The newest installment comes out next month so I am trying to hurry and get through all 800+ pages of this novel before the new one is released. I've also got a sort of ticking time bomb situation happening here so I want to get all my reading wrapped up/caught up before it goes off as I doubt I will have much time for leisurely reading in the coming months.

Here's the plot, if you're interested:

"Jamie Fraser, former Jacobite and reluctant rebel, is already certain of three things about the American rebellion: The Americans will win, fighting on the side of victory is no guarantee of survival, and he'd rather die than have to face his illegitimate son -- a young lieutenant in the British Army -- across the barrel of a gun.

Claire Randall knows that the Americans will win, too, but not what the ultimate price may be. That price won't include Jamie's life or his happiness, though -- not if she has anything to say about it.

Meanwhile, in the relative safety of the twentieth century, Jamie and Claire's daughter, Brianna, and her husband, Roger MacKenzie, have resettled in a historic Scottish home where, across a chasm of two centuries, the unfolding drama of Brianna's parents' comes to life through Claire's letters. The fragile pieces reveal Claire's love for battle-scarred Jamie Fraser and their flight from North Carolina to the high seas, where they encounter privateers and ocean battles -- as Brianna and Roger search for clues not only to Claire's fate but to their own. Because the future of the MacKenzie family in the Highlands is mysteriously, irrevocably, and intimately entwined with life and death in war-torn Colonial America. 

With stunning cameos of historical characters from Benedict Arnold to Benjamin Franklin, An Echo in the Bone is a soaring masterpiece of imagination, insight, character, and adventure -- a novel that echoes in the mind long after the last page is turned."

I just started it this weekend, so I'm not very far into the story yet, but I am excited to see where it goes. The last few books have been building to a great conflict and while they were good, it started to feel like things were dragging on a bit. I am anxious for things to start happening and feel like this book might bring all of the resolution I have been seeking. So, hopefully it will be a much faster read.

Friday, May 9, 2014

Happy weekend:

Happy Friday, lovelies! What are you doing this weekend? Anything fun? We have a few things we hope to get done around the house, but mostly our plan is to relax. We don't have too many more weekends where we are at liberty to do whatever we want, so we plan on taking advantage of it. Sleeping in? Done. Lazying around in front of the TV? I'm on it. Eating whatever I want whenever I want? You betcha.

Here's what's been going on around our house lately:
  1. Weekly doctor appointments now. This is happening, people!
  2. We got our jogging stroller last week. I am so ready to get back into running this summer!
  3. We've been working on painting our dining room for the last two weeks and I'm happy to report it's almost done!
  4. This week has been particularly hard for me. I have been trying to work up until this little boy decides to make his grand entrance (lord, let that be sooner rather than later), but Monday I had to take a half day to rest and spent the afternoon with a heating pad and a sleeping pup. It definitely helped but I am still dealing with some nasty back pain pretty much daily, at this point in the game.
  5. One of my oldest and dearest friends, Katherine, had her baby Tuesday night! Mother and baby are doing fine. I'm so happy for her but also, a little jealous because I am so ready for this part to be over. I can't wait to watch Baby J and Baby M grow up together!
Have a great weekend, friends! XO.

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

New music:

Lately Andrew and I have been listening to music from the 90's and remembering what it was like to grow up listening to this stuff on the radio. It's nostalgic and just what we both need right now, apparently. So, if you were alive in the 90's, none of these songs are probably new to you but I'm betting you've forgotten about most of these gems somewhere along the way. Allow me to refresh your memory. 

Such great stuff, right? Gin Blossoms! Cranberries! Foo Fighters! Semisonic! So put your feet up, grab a delicious and refreshing beverage, cancel your plans for the next couple hours, and come along with me for a stroll down memory lane. Really brings you back, doesn't it? I can almost taste the Surge (remember Surge?) now.

Monday, May 5, 2014

New reads:

This week I'm reading The Fault in Our Stars by John Green. It's been on my reading list for a while and I finally got around to picking it up this weekend. I borrowed it from a friend at work who was nice enough to lend it to me when I casually mentioned in passing that I was interested in it. I know it's being made into a movie but honestly, I'm probably not ever going to watch the movie. So, I'm reading it.

Here's the gist:

"Despite the tumor-shrinking medical miracle that has bought her a few years, Hazel has never been anything but terminal, her final chapter inscribed upon diagnosis. But when a gorgeous plot twist named Augustus Waters suddenly appears at Cancer Kid Support Group, Hazel's story is about to be completely rewritten.

Insightful, bold, irreverent, and raw, The Fault in Our Stars is award-winning author John Green's most ambitious and heartbreaking work yet, brilliantly exploring the funny, thrilling, and tragic business of being alive and being in love."

Have you read it? Did you like it? Call me crazy, but something tells me this story is going to be sad. And probably won't end happy. I'll give it a chance... but I'm just calling it now.

Friday, May 2, 2014

Happy weekend:

Happy Friday! What are you up to this weekend? Anything fun? I feel like this is the first weekend in a long time that we don't have any commitments. So naturally we're using the free time to finish up last minute projects. Andrew will be tackling the yard again while I attempt to get some painting done. And about a million other little things. We're attempting to have a garage sale next weekend so we've got to prep for that as well. Hopefully I can squeeze a nap or two in there somewhere along the way.

Have a great weekend, friends! XO.

Thursday, May 1, 2014

May Day:

It's the first of May, people. You know what that means -- it's May Day! Do you do anything fun to celebrate today? When I was a little kid, my friends and I would collect flowers from our mothers' flower beds (sorry, mom) and put them in little baskets to leave on our neighbors' doorsteps. Then we'd ding-dong-ditch them. It's a funny little memory -- just one of many weird notions I had as a child.

I can't believe it's already May! This is the month that will change our lives forever. It got here so quickly. I'm a little nervous, to be honest. But mostly ready to start this journey, I think.

So, Happy May Day, friends! Do something fun and outdoorsy today. Maybe a picnic dinner? Or an extra long walk through the park. And if you get a surprise bouquet on your doorstep, you can probably guess who it's from.