Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Brody's Bedding

I forgot to mention Brody's bedding yesterday!

Chris called the store owner (the one who yelled at him) to see if the bedding was completed. It was, so he went to pick it up. She apologized to him and said that she had been way out of line.

So, Chris brought the bedding home. Unfortunately, it wasn't exactly what we ordered, but most of it is cute.

Here is the bumper and skirt:

The bumper has brown elephants on a blue background. The center panel has his name on it.

Here is one of the problems - the lumbar pillow for my rocker obviously is in the wrong fabric. I put it in the crib so you could see the difference in color. We're going to pay to have this fixed.

And here is a little stroller blanket we also had made. It's brown minky dot. They forgot to embroider his initials on it but we can easily get that fixed.
Once we get those things fixed I'll be a lot happier with the whole package. The other error was the size/height of the bumper but all in all I think it looks okay. I love the color scheme and the elephants and the softness of the minky.

More of his nursery to come as we finish it!
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Tuesday, September 28, 2010

31 Weeks!


How Far Along: 31 Weeks
Size of baby: 3.3lbs,16 inches and the size of 4 navel oranges.
Weight Gain: 15lbs
Maternity Clothes: I still am able to wear a combo of maternity and regular clothes.
Gender: BOY! (Brody)
Movement: Mostly at night. He is VERY low but he recently discovered the joy of wedging his foot into my ribcage.
What I miss: Sleep.
Sleep: I get up about 3-5 times per night.
Symptoms: I'm always way too hot and usually very exhausted!

I had a checkup today and we were hoping to schedule my c-section but their November surgery calendar isn't out yet! Instead we'll schedule it at my next appointment which is in 2 weeks. We went over Brody's fetal echo and she agreed that everything looked great. We also talked some more about PPHN and she feels (as do I) that she has done everything preventative on her end to make sure that Brody is totally healthy. Have I mentioned that we think she is fantastic? Cause we totally do. Oh, and as a bonus, the room I was in today had an ultrasound machine so she let us take a peek at Brody! He looks great!
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Monday, September 27, 2010

Birthday Party Fun

On Saturday Brayden went to a birthday party for his friend Stella (or "Tella" as he calls her) and it was a Mickey & Minnie themed party. Sydney did such a great job on the food and decorations!

It was a beautiful day and so the kids played outside for awhile. Brayden with his friends Lilly and Reid. Funny sidenote...Brayden seems to think Lilly, Reid and Stella are all related. He asks for them constantly and always all three of them together!
The birthday girl in her adorable outfit!
And Jennifer brought Miss Jillian! Isn't her tutu adorable?! She is one of the most alert little babies I've ever seen!
We had such a good time and then B came home and crashed. It was the day of the Arkansas game and so believe it or not, I actually watched. Mainly I watched because Chris and my brother were at the game and I was hoping to spot them. They had super good seats (or so I've been told) and I thought I might luck out and see them! No such luck, but I do think I spotted a church friend on tv!

Tomorrow is my appointment to go over test results with my OB and also my 31 week mark!
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Saturday, September 25, 2010

Brody's Baby Shower!

Last night was Brody's baby shower! My sweet friends Elizabeth and Julie hosted it at Panera! Generally our church friends do 2nd+ showers at a restaurant, and Panera just sounded good!

This is Elizabeth and I before the shower started; I cannot believe I didn't get a picture with Julie!!!

Here I am with my mom, my grandma and my mother in law before the shower. Behind us are the yummy cupcakes, and some cute decorations! I'm holding an ultra sound picture of Brody. Julie had asked me to send her one and I kept wondering why! Haha! Such a cute idea!

The always adorable cookies that Robin made!
Opening Brody's gifts:
Brody got sooo many cute and useful things! He's already spoiled! My mom and mother in law also got me a little gift - my mom got me a bracelet with the boy's initials and my mother in law got a necklace with their names stamped on it and their birthstones! So cute!

Thanks to everyone who came to celebrate Brody!!

My little mister missed me while I was gone! He came running to the door yelling "Mommy!" when I got home!
The only thing that wasn't fantastic about yesterday was Brody's bedding. About 8 weeks ago we ordered fabric from a local store and commissioned them to make his bedding. They told me that it would be completed in 6 weeks or less. Last week we checked on it - and they hadn't even begun making it! Then they promised that it would be done yesterday. Well, it wasn't. The owner was HORRIBLE. She screamed at Chris on the phone and hung up on him. She also accused us of lying about the date that it was to be completed. It was the worst display of customer service I've seen in a lonnnng time.
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Friday, September 24, 2010

MIA, Baby Shower & Hogs.

I've been a little MIA. My family has been in town since Monday and I've been super busy with them. Believe it or not, I actually had my camera but I only took two pics - because the battery died.
But doesn't this pic make up for that?

We have been busy, busy, busy this week, and tonight is my baby shower/sprinkle! I'm a little nervous - I really don't like being the center of attention. I love going to other people's showers but when it's my own I just get so nervous! But I'm thankful for sweet friends who insisted on throwing one for Brody!

Tomorrow is the "big game" that I've been hearing non-stop about...Arkansas vs Alabama. We all know I'm not a huge football fan but of course I'm rooting for the Hogs! Chris and my brother will be there cheering them on! I keep getting asked if I'm going - nope! I don't think sitting outside when you are this big and having to get up 500 times to trek to the bathroom is really my style! Instead, I'll be going to a friends daughters birthday party and then relaxing at home!
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Wednesday, September 22, 2010

30 Weeks!

How Far Along: 30 Weeks
Size of baby: 3lbs,15.7 inches and the size of a cabbage.
Weight Gain: 15lbs
Maternity Clothes: I wear a combo of maternity and regular clothes. It just depends on the outfit!
Gender: BOY! (Brody)
Movement: Mostly at night. He is VERY low but he recently discovered the joy of wedging his foot into my ribcage.
What I miss: Sleep and feeling like I'm rested!
Sleep: I get up about 3-5 times per night.
Symptoms: I still take a Zofran some mornings but other than that I'm okay. I'm also always way too hot and very exhausted!

Yesterday was by far the best day since Brody's echo went so perfectly! I'm looking forward to Friday and my shower and seeing all my friends as well. Next week I have another checkup and I'm looking forward to that as well!

I've been a little MIA this week and my Twitter friends were concerned - my family is in town visiting! I only see my grandpa and his wife maybe once every year and my grandma twice a year, so I've been busy with them!
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Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Results of Brody's Echo

We had Brody’s echocardiogram today. Basically, it went just like the paperwork they sent me said it would go. We walked in, met with a doctor and the ultrasound technician, and they took us to an exam room. We got connected via satellite to the Cardiologist at ACH and he gave the go ahead to begin the echo. It was actually a lot faster than we thought it would be and I’m guessing that it’s because they didn’t find anything wrong!

Towards the end, Brody began to get a little ticked off because he was apparently trying to sleep and kept getting poked and prodded, so he decided to attack the ultrasound wand. He started kicking at it and hitting it, haha!

They took a thousand looks at his heart and measured, measured, measured. They watched all of the functions of the heart and also checked his cord to make sure he was getting what he needs through it.

One of the problems with Brayden’s PPHN was that they don’t know what caused it. He wasn’t a preemie, he didn’t have merconium aspiration, I didn’t take any medications etc. In addition, PPHN is fairly rare so they don’t necessarily have as much to go on to begin with. With that said, the Cardiologist, Dr. B felt very good about the echo today. He said it was normal and perfect and that he didn’t even see a small problem on it. He feels that our chances of a normal delivery are very, very good.

Thank you all so much for your comments and prayers!!
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Sunday, September 19, 2010

Game Day Fun

Yesterday was the Razorback game against Georgia and we had our friends Matt and Sara and their kids over for a little game day fun. The guys watched the first half of the game upstairs in our Razorback room and then we put the kids down for a nap and watched the rest downstairs.

After our glorious victory we grilled out and let the kids play.

B's shirt says "Call them and they will come."
B just loves Sara. She went and sat in the swing and two seconds later he was over there climbing up with her and Lilly:
We had enough food for a good 15 people! We made hamburgers, hot dogs, brats, frito pie and brownies! Oh, and of course cheese dip and salsa; yum!!

We have a busy week ahead. I've got family coming into town, my fetal echo is on Tuesday, we might be going to a new group thing on Wednesday night and then my baby shower is on Friday!! Lots to update on!
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Friday, September 17, 2010

Playdates and Miss Jillian!

Now that Brayden is feeling all better, we've resumed our playgroup schedule. Yesterday our friend Ginger hosted us. B had such a good time. I love having him around other kids; first, he eats better (it's like peer pressure or something!) and second, it helps him to learn how to behave around other kids. With his new brother on the way, we'll take all the learning experiences we can get!

Here he is chowing down:

Today we met another group of friends at Chick Fil A (where else?!). Brayden is smitten with Sara, and he wanted her to hold him all day!


After lunch, Sara and I headed over to the hospital to see Jennifer and Miss Jillian! She is just so precious. She opened her eyes briefly for me! She just has the sweetest little face and of course, Jennifer looks fantastic!! I can't believe she just had a c-section!

Brayden ignored her at first, then noticed her but didn't mind, and then eventually decided that he wanted me to hold him and not her. I'm hoping it was just because he was tired! Haha!
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Thursday, September 16, 2010

Baked Ziti

Almost five years ago I attempted to make baked ziti...and it was AWFUL. Horrible. In fact, I think we ended up tossing the whole thing and going out to eat. Cooking Fail.

So, it's taken me this long to work up the nerve to try it out again. This time, I looked at a few recipes online and then did what I do best - toss them in the trash and go with what I like. Ha!
So here's what I did:

1 box of Ziti
1 24 oz jar of Giada's Tomato Basil sauce
2 rounds of fresh mozzarella (about 2 cups)
1 cup of ricotta
3/4 cup of parmesan (grated)
1 egg
S&P
Bread crumbs
Butter

First, preheat your oven to 425. Then cook the pasta to al dente and drain. In a bowl, combine sauce, grated mozzarella, ricotta, grated parmesan, egg, S&P and hot pasta. Pour into a greased 9*13 pan. Top with bread crumbs, extra parmesan and dot with butter. Bake uncovered for 20 minutes, or until bubbly and golden.

It was SUPER easy and really good! This would be a great meal to take to someone or to freeze for later!
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Wednesday, September 15, 2010

29 Weeks!


How Far Along: 29 Weeks
Size of baby: 2.5lbs,15 inches and the size of a butternut squash.
Weight Gain: 14lbs
Maternity Clothes: I wear a combo of maternity and regular clothes. It just depends on the outfit!
Gender: BOY! (Brody)
Movement: Mostly at night. He is VERY low but he recently discovered the joy of wedging his foot into my ribcage.
What I miss: Sleep.
Sleep: I get up about 3-5 times per night.
Symptoms: I still take a Zofran some mornings but other than that I'm okay. I'm also always way too hot and very exhausted!

I'm excited for my upcoming shower, the fetal echo on the 21st and my followup appointment!

Only 9+ weeks to go!
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Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Paula Deen Goodness - Chicken Fried Steak, Fried Corn, Gravy

I picked up Paula Deen's "Best Dishes" magazine awhile ago and just now had the time to sit down and go through it. I knew there were several things I wanted to try out but we do our best to space out our fried food meals and eat healthy stuff in between!

So first up? Paula's Chicken Fried Steak with Parsleyed Cream Gravy & Fried Corn. Doesn't that just make your mouth water?!

(All recipes courtesy of Paula Deen: Best Dishes magazine)

Chicken Fried Steak:

Vegetable oil for frying
6 cubed steaks (I used 2 bottom round's and since they weren't already tenderized, I beat them to death with a meat mallet)
2 t steak seasoning (I used Lawry's)
1 t garlic powder
1 C flour
1/2 t baking powder

Heat oil. Sprinkle steaks with seasoning, garlic and, I added S&P. In a shallow bowl, mix flour and baking powder. Dredge steaks and shake off excess. Fry 3-4 minutes per side. Put in a 200 degree oven to keep warm while making the gravy.

Parsleyed Cream Gravy:
2 C whole milk (I used 2%)
1/4 C flour
1/2 t salt
1/2 t pepper
Reserved drippings and brown bits from the Chicken Fried Steak
1/4 C Parsley (I left this out)

Whisk milk, flour, S&P into drippings & brown bits. Cook for 6-8 minutes (mine cooked in about 4) whisking constantly until thickened. Add in parsley. Serve.

Fried Corn:
4 slices of bacon
3 C fresh corn kernels (about 6 ears...I just used 4)
1/2 C water
1 t sakt
1 t pepper
1 t sugar

Cook bacon until crispy. Remove and drain. Add corn and water to drippings. Cook over med high heat for 6-8 minutes stirring often. Stir in salt, pepper and sugar. Cooke for another 2 minutes, stirring constantly. Top with crumbled bacon.

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Monday, September 13, 2010

DNOW!

Every year our church does a program with the youth group called DNOW (Discipleship Now). They've been doing it a really long time - in fact, I went 11 years ago as a 15 year old Sophmore!
Back then, it was a lot smaller but it has really, really grown into a wonderful outreach over the years. Kids from other churches and kids that don't go to church all come together for this event.

I've mentioned before that sometimes my family and I go stay at our cabin. We recently built the cabin and we had DNOW in mind during the process. We have bunk rooms that we can host larger groups of kids. For example, when Chris and I hosted 10th grade boys at our house a few years ago, we had 8 boys and 2 counselors. At our cabin this year we had 21 12th grade girls and 2 counselors. Chris' mom and stepdad have come up the last two years to help with support - they stay at the cabin with my parents and help with shuttling the kids around.

I mentioned that there are 2 counselors. They are usually college girls/boys that come in for the weekend and lead Bible studies with the kids and help make sure they are where they are supposed to be when they are supposed to be there! Here's my mom and our two counselors this year:
This year, the competition was called the "Amazing Race" after the TV show. First, there was a scavenger hunt for clues, and then the 4 teams that gathered the clues and returned to the church first were in the finals. Our team was back first! Then there was a search through 1,000 bottles for a little ball. The two finalist (we were one) then had to stack the books of the Bible in order without audience assistance.

And they won!! The prize? $1,000 to donate to any charity they want! They choose TWO wonderful charities and split the money between them.

Sadly, Chris, Brayden and I were ALL sick ALL weekend and hardly able to participate. Usually we are really involved with our kids, but this year we decided it was better not to get them sick too.

On Sunday, there were 28 baptisms! Two of them were our girls! What a wonderful weekend it was!
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Friday, September 10, 2010

It's Time...

My FAVORITE time of the year is fast approaching.

And it includes...

Salted Caramel Hot Chocolate (they brought them back!) from Starbucks:

The fluffly white stuff:

SWEATERS!!!!!!
And the funniest movie ever made.
Only I'm not allowed to watch this one for approximately another 50 days. Chris limits me on my Christmas Vacation intake. Perhaps because I can recite every single line...or because once it's over, I'll restart it and make him watch it again. Or maybe both.

I know most people would say "FOOTBALL!" but I guess I'm just not most people! But I do love the food that comes along with football, if that counts for something! Ha!

What are YOU looking forward to?

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Thursday, September 9, 2010

28 Weeks - Third Trimester!


How Far Along: 28 Weeks - Third Trimester!
Size of baby: 2.25lbs,14.8 inches and the size of a Chinese cabbage.
Maternity Clothes: I wear a combo of maternity and regular clothes. It just depends on the outfit! I tried on my non maternity jeans out of morbid curiosity the other day and am happy to say they still fit! With Brayden by 20 weeks I couldn't get into them! Of course, my pre-Brody jeans and my pre-Brayden jeans are two different sizes! Ha!
Gender: BOY! (Brody)
Movement: ALL.THE.TIME. He is VERY low but he recently discovered the joy of wedging his foot into my ribcage.
What I miss: Sleep.
Sleep: I get up about 3-5 times per night.
Symptoms: I still take a Zofran some mornings but other than that I'm okay. I'm also always way too hot and very exhausted!

I got a call from my doctor yesterday with, what seems like some of the first GOOD news I've gotten in awhile. My kidneys looked GREAT, no stones and no inflammation. Also, my lab work came back good. There wasn't any bacteria present which was great news. I think my exhaustion is coming from being sick this entire time - sinus infections, other infections, just one thing after another. It's like I just cannot get well and they've run out of medications because I'm allergic to so many of the meds they could treat me with!
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Wednesday, September 8, 2010

MOPS meeting - The Duggar's!

I was SO excited to go to back to the first MOPS session of the year because Michelle Duggar was our guest speaker! I personally love the Duggar's; I think they are great people who stand up for their beliefs even when it isn't popular. I really admire their faith. I met Jim Bob and Michelle at ACH (click here) but this was the first time I'd met any of their children.

Michelle and I (yes, I wear glasses. There was a whole Twitter convo about it last week and so I decided to let a picture slip through of me in them. OK, or I forgot to take them off...it was dark outside because of the rain so I had them on so that I could see while driving!).

Sara, Jana, Jinger, Jessa and I:
And I took a little video of the girls playing violin so that you could see them and also the film crew from TLC! We all had to sign release forms because they were filming 19 Kids and Counting! Who knows, maybe you'll see me on the show (haha, I would pass out of embarrassment if that actually happens)!



I ended up missing the last 30 minutes or so because Brayden was screaming in the nursery. I was so sad to miss the end of Michelle's talk. One thing that she said that I will really take away and think about is to praise your kids in public and correct them in private. I thought that was a really interesting idea and something that I am going to learn a little more about.
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Monday, September 6, 2010

Cleaning Bliss

So I never really thought I'd write a post about something like this...

But yet here I am.

Yes, this is a Shark Steam Mop. A lot of my friends both IRL and online have been buzzing about this particular steam mop. I ran into my friend Ginger (her blog is private) at Sam's Club last week and she was buying one. We got to talking about it and it just confirmed that I needed a steam mop! We all know how much I love a good, clean, sanitized surface!

I lucked out and found them at Bed Bath & Beyond with an instant $20 rebate AND I had a 20% off coupon so I paid $85 instead of $120 which made me even happier about my purchase!

So we just plugged it in and I am in LOVE! I got about three good passes in on my kitchen floor and then Chris took it away afraid that I'd go into labor or something. HA! I think he just wanted to use it!
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Saturday, September 4, 2010

First ER Visit & The Game - Frito Pie

You know that Brayden is sick when he wakes up screaming at 7am....one because he isn't much of a screamer, and two, because he usually sleeps til' 9am.

And that is how we wound up taking our very first trip to the ER (thanks Dad for the pic):
When Chris brought him downstairs (he ran up to get him when he was screaming) he was (TMI) throwing up green stuff. I almost called an ambulance because I thought he was choking. In what might have been the world's faster trip to the ER, we found out that he had an ear infection in one ear and the beginning of acute bronchitis. We were sent home with two prescriptions and he was immediately much happier! (I say it was the "fastest trip" because we were in and out of there in less than 2 hours).
After his nap, B was feeling much better and so we put him in his "Let's Call Those HOGS" tee so that he could watch the game with Daddy:
And I made Frito Pie and my favorite, Chocolate Chip Cookies!
For Frito Pie, just heat up 2 cans of chili with half a block of cream cheese, serve over Frito's and top with cheese!
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Friday, September 3, 2010

MOPS!

Last year I started going to MOPS. And I was a nervous wreck! I literally did not know a soul, except for Sara, who I had literally just met for the first time! Jennifer who is now an in real life friend but at the time I hadn't met in person, invited me.

Let me tell you, it is SO hard for me to go places when I don't know anyone. I am really, really a shy person. But it was one of the best things I've done! I've made so many good friends and I still see a lot of them every other Friday at playgroup! We really had the best time last year and I am so excited to start up again next week.

If you live in my area and are looking for a MOPS group to get involved with, please email me (EmailJennasJourney@gmail.com) and I will send you info! Also, feel free to ask me any questions about it that you might have. I'd be happy to share more about this amazing organization!
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Thursday, September 2, 2010

Double the fun!

I am SO excited about a review for the 2011 Maclaren Twin Techno that I've just published here.

Please go check it out! I can't wait to share about this amazing stroller with you!
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Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Chicken Roll Ups


I have a great, easy and delicious new recipe to share with you!

One of my favorite things to do in my limited free time is to search food blogs and food websites. I kept seeing recipes similar to the one I'm going to share but I didn't like half of the ingredients, and the ones I did like, Chris didn't. So here's my version of Chicken Roll Ups!

First, I boiled 2 chicken breasts. I just pulled them straight out of the freezer and threw them in warm water, and let it boil for about 40 minutes.

Meanwhile, I let a block of cream cheese thaw out. Hey, I never promised it was an overly healthy recipe.

I mixed the cream cheese with 1 1/2 cups of cheddar and 1 cup of Monterey jack and some salt and pepper.

Once the chicken was cooked, Chris shredded it for me with his hands of steel, and we mixed it into the cheese mixture.

Then I put the mixture on big, buttery, flakey crescent rolls.And rolled them up. Oh, and then brushed them with melted butter and topped them with bread crumbs. I guess you could skip the butter part, but you only live once.Finally, bake them at 350 for 20-25 minutes!
  • 1 pkg cream cheese (8oz)
  • 1 pkg crescent rolls (6 ct) (note, you can also use TWO packages of regular sized crescents)
  • 2 shredded, cooked chicken breasts
  • 1.5 C grated chedder cheese
  • 1 C grated Monterey Jack
  • 1/4 t salt
  • 1/4 t pepper
  • bread crumbs
  • 1/4 stick melted butter
Combine chicken, cheeses, salt and pepper. Spoon onto crescents. Roll them up making sure they are sealed around the chicken mixture. Brush tops with butter and sprinkle with bread crumbs. Bake at 350 for 20-25 minutes. To reheat, just place in a 325 degree oven for 15 minutes.
Be sure to check out my other great chicken recipes too! Here's a few to get you started!
Cheesy Chicken Spaghetti
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