Monday, March 31, 2014

Stork the Nursery: Showers for the Distant Mama-to-be

If you’ve been around here for a while you know that while the Mr. and I live in Houston, I am from Virginia and he is from the Pittsburgh area.  We have family in those states, as wells as Florida, Nebraska, and Tennessee.  My family wanted to host a shower for us, but we all knew that the distance was going to be a HUGE issue; there was no way that we could get all of our family together in one state…to be honest we couldn’t even do that for our wedding, and we ended up with two different wedding receptions…… I’ll save that story for another day, but suffice it to say, there was no way to get us all together.  So my sister, genius that she is, brainstormed a way for us to be showered from all corners of the globe. 

With a spin on the typical “Stock the Bar” engagement party, she sent out announcements to our friends and family to “Stork” our Nursery from the comforts of their own homes.  I think this is a great idea for showers where the bride or mama-to-be is too far away and the family still wants to shower her with love for the next chapter in her life.  Virtual Baby ShowerDSC_0310-2
Check out these awesome stamps my sister made too!  She used the pictures from our gender reveal!  I was so shocked and surprised to see that!  DSC_0313-2
Thank you Kellyn for organizing this for us! 
We are so grateful!!!!
You are going to make one heck of an aunt!
xoxo Darby

Friday, March 28, 2014

Little Peep Bumpdate {30 weeks}

30 week collageDate: 3/19/14
How far along: 30 weeks
Fruit-size comparison: Large cabbage
Developmental milestones:  Little Peep is about 3 lbs now.  One of my favorite things that is developing in Little Peep this week are his "brain wrinkles" (these are really called sulci & gyri, but it's the gray matter in the brain that looks like wrinkles; this will enable Little Peep to have more complex thinking, somatosensation, and personality).  His grip is also getting stronger and he is able to clasp things in his fist.  His eyelids are opening and closing now, though they will be closed for the majority of the time.  The fine hair (lanugo) that has coated his skin to protect his body is going to start falling out this week.
Maternity clothes: I think I'm starting to outgrow some of my maternity clothes :-/  It’s getting pretty tight around here!
Weight gain: I will have my official weigh-in at my next appointment, but I think I'm up 20 lbs since pre-pregnancy.
Stretch Marks: Yep :-)
Sleep: I still have 3-4 potty breaks a night, but so far so good as long as I stay on my left side.  My bruised rib cage on the right side is still pretty sore, so rolling to that side is not favorable.
Best moment of the week: I have to say that by far my shower was the best moment of the week.  I had been looking forward to it all week.  To be honest I never thought I would ever have a baby shower.  We struggled for so long that I just thought that this event wasn’t in the cards for me.  So the fact that I had the opportunity to be showered and by such loving women from my smallgroup, I felt so honored and blessed.  It really was the most beautiful shower I have ever been to; it was picture perfect!  I really didn’t want it to end; I didn’t want to leave.  I would have stayed there all day if they would have let me.  Thank you ladies for such a wonderful baby shower!
Movement: Remember when I mentioned that I felt a big "pop" in the middle of the night during week 27? Well before then, I had never felt Little Peep kick on my right side.  He only kicked me on the left side.  At the next appointment, the doctor confirmed that Little Peep had flipped head down.  Perhaps that big "pop"was him flipping?  Since then I feel him kick mainly on the right side of my abdomen and upper right belly.  So I'm thinking that his booty must be on the left side now so that the majority of his kicks are on the right.
Cravings: Pizza, salad, and milk :-)
Gender: A little boy!!!
Belly button in or out: Partially an outtie and partially a "flattie"
Wedding ring: On
Anything making you queasy/sick: Nope
What I miss: Nothing!
What I’m looking forward to: My next appointment to see Little Peep.  We're praying that all of the placenta issues have resolved themselves and that the doctor has a great report for us.
Labor signs: Nothing that I'm aware of.
Symptoms: Nothing new that I can think of.  Heart burn has reared its nasty head again but that’s just to be expected so nothing really new.
Nursery: Is done, and the pictures have been taken.  I can't wait to share these with you!
Emotions:  This entire week was a week of joy.  I was so very much looking forward to my baby shower and it certainly did not disappoint.  I left feeling so loved and valued.  The shower was so beautiful and perfect….it was so Darby!  I am very blessed to have such giving women in my smallgroups! Thank you ladies!
xoxo Darby

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

What I’m Lovin’ Wednesday: Desert Song

As I walk my journey, it seems like this song always comes back to my mind.  This song meets me where I am and ministers to my heart.  No matter what I’m facing, no matter how large or minuscule, this song has something to teach me and remind me.  I hope this song provides you with the encouragement that no matter what you're going through on a daily bases that you are NOT forgotten, but are valued and loved.

Since the video isn't really anything but singing I have posted the lyrics below for you.
This is my prayer in the desert
When all that's within me feels dry
This is my prayer in my hunger and need
My God is the God who provides

This is my prayer in the fire
And weakness or trial or pain
There is a faith proved of more worth than gold
So refine me lord through the flames

I will bring praise
I will bring praise
No weapon formed against me shall remain

I will rejoice
I will declare
God is my victory and he is here

This is my prayer in the battle
When triumph is still on its way
I am a conqueror and co-heir with Christ
So firm on his promise I'll stand

I will bring praise
I will bring praise
No weapon formed against me shall remain

I will rejoice
I will declare
God is my victory and he is here

All of my life
In every season
You are still God
I have a reason to sing
I have a reason to worship

All of my life
In every season
You are still God
I have a reason to sing
I have a reason to worship

All of my life
In every season
You are still God
I have a reason to sing
I have a reason to worship

All of my life
In every season
You are still God
I have a reason to sing
I have a reason to worship

I will bring praise
I will bring praise
No weapon formed against me shall remain

I will rejoice
I will declare
God is my victory and he is here

And this is my prayer in the harvest
And favor and providence flow
I know I'm filled to be emptied again
The seed I received I will sow
lyric source
Have an awesome Wednesday my sweet friends
xoxo Darby

Monday, March 24, 2014

Baby Shower Hostess Gifts: DIY Mason Jar Manicure Kit

Over the weekend, Little Peep and I had the honor of being showered with love as we prepare for his arrival.  My smallgroup from church threw us the most gorgeous shower that I am still in complete and utter awe over…seriously we feel so incredibly loved.  Thank you so much ladies for all of your time, effort, and love that you poured into hosting this shower for us.  Words truly cannot express our level of gratitude.

Being on the giving side of a shower many times before, I truly understand what an investment of time and resources these things can be, and I wanted to make sure that my hostesses knew that I appreciated their efforts.  So before arriving at the shower I made these DIY manicure kits in masons jars in the hopes that the ladies of my smallgroup would have some time afterwards to pamper themselves.  Trust me, after the shower they threw us they definitely deserve to be pampered!DIY Mason Jar Manicure Kit
Here is how I put these hostess gifts together (FYI, I promise it doesn’t take rocket science):
All I needed was nail polish, nail files, brushes, manicure blocks, cotton balls, and of course mason jars.
Seriously, is there such thing as a DIY project that doesn’t involve a mason jar anymore?!
DIY Mason Jar Manicure Kit IngredientsI set up an assembly line,
and start dropping goodies into each jar, ending with the cotton balls on top.
Be careful to gently place the nail polish in the bottom since you don’t want to crack the glass.DSC_0293Once the jars were done, I took some left over burlap (from this wreath project) and
bakers twine to cover the tops of the mason jars. 
Before I tied the twine into a bow, I slid on a card that I had stamped with “Thank you.”DSC_0298DSC_0300DSC_0303
These jars, accompanied by a personalized thank you note, were what I gave to the fabulous hosts of our baby shower. 
To say that I’m grateful to you ladies, just doesn’t do it justice.  I hope that you each know how thankful I am to have you as a friend and sister in Christ!
xoxo Darby

Friday, March 21, 2014

Little Peep Bumpdate {29 weeks}

29 week collageDate: 3/12/14
How far along: 29 weeks
Fruit-size comparison: Acorn squash
Developmental milestones: Little Peep is getting more and more energy as he grows in size.  His weight will triple between now and birth, and right now he is about 2.5 lbs. He is starting to run out of room (which you could probably tell from the picture above anyway) so you can see many of his movements on the outside of my stomach.  His skeleton is starting to get harder (which might explain why I’ve been craving so much calcium lately).
Maternity clothes: Ready for a laugh y’all?  I decided that I needed some new undies that actually fit but I refused to purchase maternity undies (because I’m Irish and stubborn, don’t hate).  Instead, I purchased briefs, but since I haven't purchased these since probably middle school I had no idea how the sizes even worked.  Well, I purchased some and let me tell you I purchased the WRONG kind.  I felt like I was wearing the Texas state flag from a car sales lot under my pants.  They were HUGE!  I told my mother about this and a few days later some new maternity undies arrived in the mail.  Thanks mom!
Weight gain:  I thought I was going to get a lecture from my doc this week, but I have only gained 18 lbs so far and he was very happy with me.  I was shocked that it was only 18, but I will take it lol
Stretch Marks: I feel like God has gifted me with a pink cheetah print tattoo right around my belly button; this is way better than any tattoo I could have ever paid for.
Sleep: With the exception of one night this week because of allergies, I have been sleeping great.
Best moment of the week: This week was spring break and I got SO much accomplished.  I went into the week with an overly ambitious to do list but I knew it all needed to be done to prep for work and Little Peep (and to reduce my potential anxiety).  I’m happy to report that I crossed off every single item on that list!  Thank you Lord for the energy and maximizing my efforts and time!  I am completely prepped for the rest of the semester in case Little Peep comes early, I have all of my fall courses completely prepped, we have registered at the hospital, Little Peep’s pediatrician is selected, our birth plan is almost finished, the pups have all of their vaccines and appointments done for the year, and both cars have been checked and oil changed.  I also met with the doctor over the break and received a great report.  Little Peep had a heart rate of 151 and his fundal height (belly measurement) is one week ahead.  Since my blood and Little Peep’s blood are not compatible, I started with my first RH- shots (which I had no idea were in the booty).  I also had my pertussis shot (and after a week my arm is still sore!).  My doctor also had some more blood tests run to evaluate my gall bladder because of the chest pains I have been having.  Everything came back fine and it turns out that Little Peep is just a really great kicker.  Since he is already head-down, he has bruised the cartilage on my ribcage.  That will heal, I get to keep my gall bladder, and my baby boy is getting ready to meet us…all wonderful news in my opinion!
Movement: I know most people don’t say this, but I feel like Little Peep’s movements tickle.  I assume this will change as he loses real estate but for now it tickles, especially when I’m on my side.
Cravings: Yogurt and milk
Gender: A little boy!!!
Belly button in or out: My innie has progressed from it’s “flattie” status, to more of an outtie.  It isn’t completely out, but it is sure on it’s way.  The skin that used to be innie is so soft!
Wedding ring: On and it just got its first “bath” at the jewelers over the weekend.  You know I gotta keep my shinnies shiny! :-)
Anything making you queasy/sick: Nope
What I miss: Nothing!
What I’m looking forward to: Next week we will get another growth scan to see Little Peep and I am definitely looking forward to seeing him again.  Also we will finally hear some results on our placenta issues.  Please keep that in your prayers if you get a chance! 
Labor signs: Nothing yet but I ordered a new birthing ball (I lost my old one in our move last year).   I am doing my exercises to keep my little boy's head down. 
Symptoms: I’m definitely expanding.  I had two women at work say “woah you’re getting big” and “are you going to make it” this week.  I find this really funny because these thoughts have also crossed my mind.  On Tuesday I’m pretty sure I accidentally flashed my who-ha to a girl at CVS when I bent down to pick up a receipt I dropped.  All grace I may have once had is gone and has since been replaced with flashing and grunting.  Dear lady at CVS, I’m sorry I may have traumatized you, but I deeply thank you for not judging me and just walking away!
Nursery: It’s completely done!  I love sitting in my glider and reading to Little Peep.  I peak in this room several times a day to imagine how much different it will be once he arrives and as he grows.  I can’t wait to share the picture with you soon!
Emotions: I will have my first baby shower next week and I cannot even begin to say how blessed I feel to even have the opportunity to have a shower.  This is a moment I thought for the longest time I would never have; I’m truly looking forward to Saturday :-)
xoxo Darby

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

What I’m Lovin’ Wednesday: Instagram Photo Dump

The Mr. and I got new phones at the beginning of March and the camera is sooooo much better than my old phone…which while it was a smart phone still had a key board (yes I miss it, RIP keyboard, insert sniffles here).  Anyways, with the new camera on my phone I have taken more pictures and have blown up my Instagram account.  Sidebar- being home from spring break didn’t help either lol
So what have we been doing lately?
Lot’s of puppy love, fun, food, Little Peep preparations, too much coffee, DIY, watching my bump grow, and random every day things.
Check us out:Collage 1Collage 2Collage 3
Just think, my next IG photo dump will probably be filled with pictures of Little Peep!
If you don’t keep up with us already on IG, you can follow along with the fun here!
xoxo Darby

Monday, March 17, 2014

Yes, Everything is Better with Bacon

The Food Network Magazine dedicated an entire issue to bacon earlier this year, so I figured that it was totally acceptable for me to dedicate an entire post to bacon.  That’s only logical, right?!  I haven't done a round up of my favorite mouth-watering recipes in a while so today is the day, and I’ve got bacon on the brain.

Bacon is not just a breakfast food anymore.  Oh no, no, no, my friends! Bacon can (and should, if you ask me) be served at any time of the day.  Allow me to demonstrate:
Jalapeno Poppers
Bacon-Wrapped Eggs // BLT Salad
Adult Mac & Cheese // Rancher’s Chicken
Bacon Recipes- 2Bacon Cinnamon Rolls // Bacon, Corn, & Avocado Salad
Chocolate Covered Bacon // Baked Gnocchi with Bacon, Tomato, & Mozerella
Bacon Recipes- 3BLT Dip
Beer & Bacon Glazed Pecans // Bacon Quiche Tartlets // Maple-Bacon Waffle Bread PuddingBacon Recipes- 4Bacon Pops // Apple Bacon Crumb Bars // Buttermilk Bacon Pralines
Potato Corn & Bacon Chowder // Maple Bacon Doughnuts // French Toast & Bacon CupcakesBacon Recipes- 5Bacon Butter Pecan Milkshake // Bacon Mocha MilkshakesBacon Recipes- 6Bacon Cheeseburger Dip // Bacon Pizza Puffs
Sweet Bacon Tator Tots // Bacon PopcornBacon Recipes- 8Wisconsin Bacon Cheese Beer Bread
Bacon-Wrapped Scallops // The Ultimate Grilled Cheese // Bacon Brie BBQ PizzaBacon Recipes- 7PW’s Bacon-Wrapped Meatloaf
Maple Bacon Monkey Bread // Bacon Jalapeno Deviled Eggs // BBQ Bacon Cheddar Meatloaf & Mashed Potatoes
Maple Bacon Cookies //  Chocolate Covered Bacon BitesBacon Recipes- 9
Bacon, Onion, & Cheddar Biscuits // Pepper Jack Bacon Mac’n Cheese
Bacon Maple French Toast // Chocolate Bacon Bomb Pie
  again, all recipes can be found here

See, what did I tell ya?!
Is your mouth watering yet?
uhhhhhh, I’m gunna need some bacon for lunch today :-)
Happy Monday friends!
xoxo Darby

Friday, March 14, 2014

Little Peep Bumpdate {28 weeks}

Tomlin & Mama Talking about Baby Brother28 week collageDate: 3/5/14
How far along: 28 weeks
Fruit-size comparison: My little man is the size of an eggplant
Developmental milestones: Little Peep is pretty much developed.  He basically has everything he needs to survive on the outside of the womb, he just needs time for everything to finish developing and fattening up.
Maternity clothes: Since this week has been mostly spring break, I've been rockin' my maternity leggings and  yoga pants.
Weight gain:  I think I'm up another lb (for a total of 18lbs), but I will find out later at my appointment this week.
Stretch Marks: Nothing new this week
Sleep: Pretty good here.  I love sleep :-)
Best moment of the week:  Last week I ordered several things for Little Peep, and since I’ve been home on spring break I’ve been able to stalk our mailbox more efficiently hehe  Every time someone from the USPS, UPS, or Fed Ex rings the doorbell I’m like a kid on Christmas morning. 
Movement: Oh is he ever moving!  I love each kick and punch he gives me.  The other day, the Mr. was talking to my belly and then put his ear down in case Little Peep wanted to talk back to his daddy, and he certainly did.  He gave the Mr. a nice swift kick to the ear.  We were both laughing hysterically.  I have a feeling this little boy is going to bring us so much laughter.
Cravings: Fruit, salads, yogurt....and of course pizza
Gender: A little boy!!!
Belly button in or out: A flattie hehe
Wedding ring: On
Anything making you queasy/sick: Nope
What I miss: Nothing!
What I’m looking forward to: I can't wait for my next appointment to check on Little Peep’s progress.
Labor signs: Nope and I'm perfectly okay with that!
Symptoms:  Getting up and down off of the recliner or the sofa is becoming quite the comical challenge.  I'm like a beached-whale who has to roll over on my side to get up.  There won't be any videos of this; it's not pretty folks. Not pretty.  My rib cage is still very sore on my right side.  Moving around and even walking can be pretty painful.  However, I have found a way to get in and out of bed (since I have to at least 3-4 times a night for a potty break), without agitating my ribs.  I can’t tell you how happy this makes me; it truly is the little things in life lol
Nursery: Would you believe this, because I hardly do myself, but the nursery is done!  Now we don't have a single diaper, wipe, or car seat, but Little Peep officially has a room at our house :-)
Emotions: I’m trying to embrace our last weeks as just me and Little Peep.  I know that once he arrives I will have to share him, so for now I’m just enjoying our special time together.
xoxo Darby

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

What I’m Lovin’ Wednesday: Second Trimester Must-Haves

Once I completed my first trimester, I jotted down all of the things that made it easier for me and I shared them with you (see here).  Since the second trimester is now behind me (sheesh where is this pregnancy going?!?!), I thought I would do the same thing for my second trimester.SecondTrimester Must-Haves
1- Water, duh!- I think everyone probably knows that pregnant women are supposed to drink a lot of water; this is not ground breaking at all, and I’m no genius :-p However, I will say that to help me drink water I found ways to make it entertaining for my taste buds (really they’re called taste receptor cells, but that is just the neuroscientist in me).  I added slices of lemon, orange, lime, or cucumber to keep my water refreshing and entertaining.  I just made a pitcher and put it in the fridge and kept refilling my glass or water bottle when it ran out.

2- Books- These three books were highly recommended to me and I have been devouring them.  Baby Bargains (10th edition) is a great book for helping to educate women on what to purchase for baby (and how to save money getting what you need/want), but also are very informative as to what life with baby will be like and what you will need/want to make life more comfortable.  This book shares and reviews the pros and cons of every single baby product and brand from strollers to nipple creams.  This is a must-have for new moms!  Expecting 411 & Baby 411 are also necessary for new mamas!  They are not organized by trimester like most maternity books; the pro I see in this is a lot of times you may have done something differently had you had time to think about it or know what was coming.  Instead these books are organized topically (i.e. nursing, childcare, vaccines, diet, prenatal tests, labor, postpartum, etc.) and you can flip through what you need at the time.  Also these books are written by doctors who are also moms, and while their information is based on research and facts, they also provide practical applications.  There is also a Toddler 411 book that I have yet to purchase, but I can promise you that I will.

3- Protein Bars- I have had to start keeping protein bars in my purse.  I never know when a hunger pain is going to begin and if I don’t get some food stat someone will hear me roar.  So to keep everyone safe, I keep proteins bars in my purse and in my desk at work.

4- Prenatal Vitamins- Well this is just a fact, you gotta take these bad boys, especially if you want to prevent neural tube defects (i.e. spina bifida & anencephaly).  I have been taking these vitamins for a few years now (since we decided to start trying to grow our family), once a day at dinner, and I’ve never once had a problem.  They meet all of the suggested levels of each element, are over-the-counter, and extremely affordable (I purchase them in bulk from Costco).

5- Be Maternity Seamless Ruched Tank- These seamless ruched tanks are ah-maz-ing!  The seamless tanks offer a lot of support for my growing belly, but also help to smooth my new lumps and bumps underneath other clothes.  I particularly like to wear these with cardigans and a belt.  The material is light and breathable, yet firm and supportive.  Right now I have two of these (black & gray) and I rotate them.  They are comfortable and very supportive. 

6- Apps- Ya know, there is an app for everything these days.  The Bump and Baby Center apps have been my go-tos.  I like The Bump app because it has a nice checklist, videos, and tips for every day.  It also sends me an update once a week on what the baby is doing developmentally.  I like the Baby Center app because, quite frankly, it tells me what day of gestation I am, and this helps me keep up with my prayer devotional hehe.  But I also like that each day there is a different little paragraph for the mama and what she may be going through physically, emotionally, relationally, professionally, etc.  So The Bump app is really more-so about the baby, while the Baby Center app is more about the mama.

7- Baby Blogs- Yep, we all know I’m a blogger and I do a lot of reading on blogs.  The Wise Baby is my favorite blog for comparing baby products and their safety features and practicality.  I read this blog at least 3 times a week for what mom’s really use and what works best under various circumstances.

8- Bella Wrap Around Maternity Top- This maternity top was recommended to me from a friend (thank you Ashley!) and it was a great purchase!  This shirt is not only comfortable and makes me feel confident with my new body but it is also a great investment.  This shirt is not only great as a maternity shirt but will function fabulously for nursing.  I also love that this shirt is a light material so that I could wear this year-round in the Houston heat.  The price for this shirt was awesome, and they offered FREE shipping!!!! 

9- Tums Smoothies- I’m sure that you’ve heard preggos have heart burn before; and if you haven’t, they do.  This is a result of the uterus pushing up on the stomach’s upper sphincter allowing it to remain open.  Therefore, the acid in the stomach is continually moving north resulting in heartburn.  I mentioned before that I was scared to try Tums before, but I am hear to say that I quickly got over that and am now a huge fan of Tums.  I particularly love the Smoothies in the Berry Fushion flavor.

10- Maternity Leggings- I live in these when I get home from work and on the weekends.  These with a longer sweater or shirt help me to be comfortable.

11- Nursing Bras- My chest increased a size already and I was falling out of my tops so I purchased nursing bras based on a lot of suggestions from friends.  I skipped maternity bras because I felt like it would be a more financially savvy decision to just buy nursing bras for later.  I started with the Gilligan & O'Malley bra and really liked it.  When my rib cage started expanding and I had a lot of pressure, I found that the underwire was starting to rub me and make me more uncomfortable.  While I still love the Gilligan & O'Malley bra, for now I have switched to a non-underwire nursing bra.

12- Bert’s Bee Mama Bee Belly Butter- You know, I’m on the genetics side; I really think the largest contributor to stretch marks are our genes for various reasons.  However, I’m an eternal optimist and it has been my hope to do whatever I can to keep my skin hydrated, and if it minimizes stretch marks then so be it.  I like Bert’s Bee Mama Bee Belly Butter because it’s extremely hydrating and safe to use during pregnancy.

13- Pillows- Maternity pillows are great for helping expectant mothers sleep, but they can be very expensive.  You really don’t need a maternity pillow as long as you have extra pillows handy.  I’m now a 4 pillow girl, and just so you know, I used to be a maybe 1 pillow kind of gal. I never really had to have one it was just a luxury.  Now I have to have one to hug, one for under my belly, one for between my knees and one for my neck just so my body isn’t killing in the morning

14- Journal- With everything going on at work, the house, and the new baby, I didn’t want to forget a single thing.  I don’t have a great memory to start off with so I have been journaling everything about this baby.  I wanted to be able to refer back to the details of this time in our lives without the fear of forgetting something.  So I’ve written everything down, every symptom, doctors appointment, heart rate, dream, fear, anxiety, prayer, and wish for this new member of our family.

15- Sticky Notes- If you know me, then you know that I have a list and a post-it for everything.  I am depending on these more & more because I am starting to forget more & more and my list just keep getting longer.  If it weren’t for post-it notes I’m pretty sure I would be lost somewhere right now.

I hope these tips help you if you're working your way through your second trimester.  Now for those of you who have completed your third trimester, what recommendations do you have for me?
Happy Wednesday friends!
xoxo Darby

Monday, March 10, 2014

5 MORE New Facts {Part 2}

It's been a while since I shared some stuff about my weirdo self so I thought I would start this week by sharing some "fun facts" about me.  For a recap, you can find the first edition of this list here.Five Facts
  1. When to Work- This is going to sound so super-uber weird, but I love to work on Mondays, Fridays, and holidays.  I know this makes me sound like a work-a-holic but it really isn't the reason (I promise!); I have different reasons why I like these days for working.  I love working on Mondays because I feel like every Monday is a new fresh clean slate; a chance to start all over, and that really excites me.  I look at Mondays like January 1st.  As for working on Fridays, why I like working these days might be occupational specific.  As a professor, most students are checked out and meetings are over by Friday.  This means that I have an entire uninterrupted day to tie up lose ends from the week; but more importantly, I use Fridays to prep for the next week.  The more I get done on Fridays the less I have to work over the weekend; this has me really motivated to cross things off my teachers to-do list on Fridays.  And lastly, why on earth would I like to come into the office during holidays?!  I don't know how I established this perspective, but I like working during the holidays because I feel like while everyone else in the world is celebrating, I'm "getting ahead".  Now really I know I'm just "catching-up" but, ehhh who cares, in my mind I'm lapping everyone else lol
  2. Washing Dishes- For the most part I load dirty dishes into our trusty dishwasher; however, there are some dishes that I love to wash by hand.  I'm not talking about dishes that are supposed to be washed by hand, I'm talking about dishes that are dishwasher safe that I chose to wash by hand instead.  I have no idea why I do this!  The only reason I can come up with is the therapeutic motion of doing the dishes and getting the instant gratification of seeing the cleaned dish.  However, that really only explains why I like doing dishes by hand, but nothing about why certain dishes are my favorites to hand wash.  Dishes I like to wash by hand include: my kitchen aid mixer bowl, my round pyrex bowls, my glass and ceramic measuring cups, all pitchers, coffee mugs, and juice glasses.  Weird, I'm so weird!
  3. The Dishes Can Wait- I hate washing dishes or even loading the dishwasher when company is over.  Now I like to clean as I go while I'm cooking so that helps, but when people are over or when the Mr. and I have a lot going on and we just need time to connect (or space out watching the Big Bang Theory), the dishes can always wait.  They aren't going anywhere. No one will die over the dishes staying in the sink or on the counter over night.  My husband and company rank higher on my list than a clean kitchen.
  4. Using a Fork- I don't like greasy fingers.  Even if I wipe my hands on a napkin, I swear that I can still feel the grease on my fingers.  Therefore, I eat french fries, wings, pizza, Chick-fil-a nuggets. and so on and so on, with a fork.
  5.   Toilet Paper Etiquette- Toilet paper is supposed to hang from the dispenser a certain way.  It should be easy to find the end and pull in a downward motion to tear your piece off.  If you have to reach up under the roll to find the end of the TP then, in my mind, it is on the dispenser wrong.  If someone puts on the TP the “wrong” way, it doesn’t make me mad or anything, but you better believe I will “fix” it.
Goodness after looking over this list it makes me feel like I’ve got some OCD tendencies.  Well at least as far as housework is concerned.   
So now you know a little bit more about me….random facts, but still all me lol
Tell me something new & random that I don’t know about you!
Happy “New Years”!!!

xoxo Darby

Friday, March 7, 2014

Little Peep Bumpdate {27 weeks}

Here are some of our photo-session outtakes from our bumpdate this week.
I thought you’d appreciate these real life images :-)
Dueling DogsSleepy Mama
27 week collagePlease notice that my toes are officially gone, my cheeks officially resemble a chipmunk, and my body is officially exhausted lol
Date: 2/26/14
How far along: 27 weeks
Fruit-size comparison: A rutabaga (which is something I have never tasted; in fact I had to Google what it actually looked like just now hehe)
Developmental milestones: This was the last week of my 2nd trimester and it certainly was an eventful one for Little Peep; He is now over 2lbs!  His eyes are beginning to open and close, and the retina (and therefore, rods and cones) are also developing.  Also, Little Peep is breathing amniotic fluid now, has a sleep schedule, and an extremely active brain (this totally pleases his neuroscientist mama!)!!!!
Maternity clothes: Oh yes, thank you Jesus for maternity clothes!
Weight gain: I gained a pound this week (thank you Easter candy & fantastic Girl Scout cookies), so I'm now at 17 lbs. for total weight gain.
Stretch Marks: Yep, but nothing new since last week.
Sleep: I love sleep :-) One night this week though Little Peep decided to take a HUGE punch to my lower abdomen.  Not only was this punch to the gut so big that it woke me up, but it also knocked the wind right outta me.  He is going to be one strong little boy!
Best moment of the week:  This may seem like a silly moment, but I’m really grateful that we the Mr. was able to accomplish this task this week; I’m blessed to have such a talented and giving husband! When we moved into our house last year, our back patio was surrounded by a 3 ft. sand pit; it was like a sand moat. I don’t know who could have ever thought this was a great idea.  With the pups enjoying their new yard this past year, I have had to sweep up sand at least twice a day everyday because they are constantly tracking sand into the house.  It drives me crazy to walk around barefoot in my own home and feel sand on the bottom of my feet, so I was sweeping constantly.  The Mr. and I wanted to deal with this sand trap before Little Peep started crawling (and really before he arrived because DIY time is going to be minimal for a while), so that he wouldn’t skin-up his knees or irritate his skin from the sand.  So over the weekend I watched the Mr. dig up the back yard, remove the sand, grade the ground away from the patio, and install new sod.  It looks great & the sand trap is gone!  I loved crossing this off of our “Before Baby Arrives” to-do list. (insert happy dance here)
Movement: He is definitely moving more :-) I love when he is dancing around when I'm at work because I feel like everyday is bring your son to work day.  I know I will miss his company next fall.  I did finally catch him moving on the outside this week.  I didn't get it on camera, but the Mr. did see it twice.  This somehow made me feel validated that it was actually happening.  Now I need to catch him on tape.
Cravings: Nothing really this week.
Gender: A little boy!!!
Belly button in or out: As the Mr. put it, it's not quite an innie nor is it an's a flattie. hehe
Wedding ring: Still on
Anything making you queasy/sick: Nope
What I miss: Nothing!!!!
What I’m looking forward to: Spring break is next week!  This is my last spring break sans baby!  Because I still have so much to do before the baby gets here for both home and work, I plan on really taking advantage of spring break.  Over the break my plan is to finish the nursery, make sure I am prepped for the rest of the semester, AND prep for all of the fall semester that way I don’t have to worry about it over the summer.  This may seem like a lot or overwhelming but I really am looking forward to having time to just get busy crossing things off of my to-do lists.  I also can't wait for my next appointment to check on Little Peep’s progress.
Labor signs: No and I'm totally okay with this!
Symptoms: I've got lots of pain at the base of my rib cage, not like heart burn but more like my ribs are bruised.  My rib cage has started expanding (or starting to the point that I can feel it as uncomfortable) to make room for my organs and the baby.  So far I would say that this has been the most uncomfortable of the symptoms that I have experienced; it’s not painful, just uncomfortable.  Since I was beginning to look like a snake because Little Peep was sucking out all of my moisture, I switched to a more intense lotion and it has help tremendously. 
Nursery: I ordered the rug, the glider and the ottoman (found a great deal on Amazon for all!) for the nursery.  I also ordered our cloth diapers last week.  This means I am just waiting for things to arrive and the nursery is done!!!  I cannot wait to see the completed version and share it with you :-)
Emotions: While I am getting nervous because I feel like time is running out before his arrival and there is still so much to be done, I just have a sense of peace the He will allow everything to come together in His perfect timing.  I am so excited to meet this little dude, but I can certainly wait for May as he keeps on baking :-)
xoxo Darby

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

What I’m Lovin’ Wednesday: Professional Maternity Fashion

Can you believe that it’s March already?
Can you believe that the first week of March is almost over?!

The past two weeks I have shared with you some maternity styles based on the seasons (winter, spring, & summer).  However, the toughest problem I have had with maternity clothing is dressing the bump for work.  It’s tough to find outfits that look professional, are financially within reason, and are actually comfortable.  Today I thought I would share some of my favorite inspirations for professional maternity outfits a la Pinterest.  So far this school year, I have worn of version of all of these outfits with Little Peep as my accessory of choice :-)Professional Maternity Fashion0dd5e92d07305455d81ab0322ca7f4826edad3eb3415a968bd0967752f7ffb678c2ccc0181c46658fe69b99a99d3c1fe38a5629d9d5b8a56585c89ee3e4b01c239dc6ba039c74dd1836083729d4f5f2c585f07b1985c9a74a9dbf805a03a67661269dbffab4dca7f4de481cc5092ba0404593026da58cc572ecbf0d48a327c64ac6960feed8942b6816f2c8b9919d247b82e987014fc98b83378980d88087f2ab88cbcd67d361ca20f78a992ba0bf3b6baa3cec1839a54b79fc74c85a435d97fe216b0b7a3f6374acf41bb3425aa0024f7518992681a659e5d030b3a248b0374
Happy Wednesday friends!
xoxo Darby
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