Friday, May 19, 2017

Things I Like #2

These Simple makeup remover/facial wipes are inexpensive and work really well. They're not super soaking wet, but they're not too dry, either. I don't tend to wear a ton of makeup, so I rarely actually wash my face before bed (I know, I know). Instead, I use side to remove all my eye makeup and the other side to clean off my skin.

We recently bought this faux fur ottoman (in the color "wolf") to put in the baby's room, but you definitely don't have to have a baby to appreciate them. They're on sale right now, they're nice and heavy and they're soft as all heck.

I'm normally a diehard Madewell t-shirt lover, and frankly I honestly cannot wait to be able to fit into my old t-shirts again. In the meantime, though, these Target ones are a nice substitute. They're really soft and really flowy, and I bought a size larger than I would normally wear so I can fit into them now and they'll (hopefully) also disguise my stomach for a while after I poop this baby out. For reference, I bought them in medium and I'm 8 months pregnant and they fit my belly, so that should tell you how flowy they are. Size down if you hate oversized stuff. They're also 8 bucks, so I mean...

For the life of me I can't figure out the negative reviews, because I have this Essence blush in the color Heat Wave and I absolutely love it. It looks intimidatingly bright in the pan, but if you're careful with your application, it's the perfect shade of coral/hot pink. Nice and summery, and it lasts on my skin all day, which I always appreciate whether a blush is five bucks or twenty.

If you're into brow pencils, you really can't beat this micro brow pencil from Nyx. I've purchased and repurchased (and repurchased) this pencil for a couple of years now, and I have yet to find anything I like better that even comes close to the price. It's creamy enough to glide on smoothly, but not so creamy that it rubs off on your face/fingers if you touch your eyebrows (and you can set it with a brow powder if you're that worried about it). The pencil tip is really thin and in my opinion, they're pretty comparable to the Anastasia Brow Wiz pencils everyone raves about - except those will run you $21.00 per pencil. If you decide to try the Nyx pencil, keep an eye on Ulta prices. They regularly have sales on Nyx products, buy one get one half off.

Finally, a well-deserved shoutout to a small Etsy business called Love, Amalie Maren. I ordered this set of three baby headbands recently, and they are adorable. She has a ton of colors and patterns you can choose from and you can buy them as singles or in sets of three. If you're not super into baby bows and are more into wraps/turbans, check them out. There are adult sizes, too!

Don't worry, none of these links are sponsored - I don't play like that. They're just things I like, therefore you probably need to know about them.

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Things I no longer take for granted

+ Being able to bend over to put on socks/tie my shoes without essentially suffocating myself.

+ Not involuntarily grunting when getting up out of a chair/off the couch/out of bed/off the toilet/out of the car.

+ The ability to climb the stairs in our home without my heart racing like I just ran a mile.

+ Not taking a full minute to roll over in bed, attempting to get comfortable again, and then laying there for a good ten minutes trying to fall back asleep.

+ Standing up after sitting for longer than five minutes without my tailbone feeling like it's going to crack in half.

+ Being able to eat without all my food feeling like it's sitting in my chest...and then forcing its way back up my throat for a good hour afterward whenever I burp.

+ Not needing Tums on me at. all. times. always.


+ Being able to pop an Aspirin or three whenever I get a headache.

+ Sleeping more than one hour at a time.

+ Zipping up my jackets/buttoning up my shirts.

+ The ability to reach into the bottom of the washing machine for wet clothes.

On a lighter note...6 1/2 weeks to go until this kid's due date, and while I'm under no delusion that I'll miraculously be less tired, I am definitely looking forward to being able to bend all the way over and sleep on my stomach again. I also just ordered a pair of harem/jogger type pants with a stretchy waistband and, thanks to the encouragement of my husband, I now fully intend on figuring out how to wear them to work without looking like a complete slob.

God bless him.

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Life Lately #8

Reading: I just downloaded a book called The Illusionist's Apprentice by Kristy Cambron. I read a review of this book on Callie's blog and thought it sounded right up my alley! I haven't started it just yet but if you follow me on Goodreads, you'll be able to see what I rate it when I'm finished with it.

Watching: OH MY GOODNESS did you know that there are three seasons of a show called The Great British Baking Show: Master Class on Netflix!? Apparently Mary Berry and Paul Hollywood talk about baking techniques and such?? Maybe? I haven't started it yet so I'm not entirely sure but put "British" and "Baking" in the same sentence and I am all about it.

Listening to: Nothing at the moment. I've been in kind of a music rut lately.

Wearing: An ever-dwindling supply of maternity clothes that actually fit. 8 more weeks...8 more weeks...8 more weeks...

Eating: Breaking all the rules and eating a cold turkey lunchmeat sandwich. Potential listeria never tasted better.

Loving: Iced tea and lemonade. If you have never tried the Crystal Light Pure packets, you need to. I make the lemonade ones in a big water bottle with a couple of slices of lemon for some extra tang, and let's just say I'm now getting more than enough water every day!

Not Loving: Being busy. I have various social events being forced upon me at least once a week between now and June, and I'm already getting a stress headache from having to be around people so much. Hashtag introvert problems. Add to that the fact that I'm done with my job in 6 weeks and people (not me) are panicking that I'm leaving, I'm getting increasingly uncomfortable by the day, I'm not sleeping well anymore, and I'm ready to put myself on bed rest just so I can avoid everyone and everything.


Annoyed with: People who use my office when I'm out sick for one day and don't leave it like they found it. Papers re-stacked in different places than I left them, pens randomly left all over my desk, my computer tower turned and left all askew with a USB drive still in there, a chair close to my desk pulled out and left at an awkward angle...RESPECT THE SPACE, PEOPLE. I'm a little OCD about keeping my office tidy and leaving it extra neat over the weekend so I have a nice clean area to come back to on a Monday morning, so when I'm out sick on a Monday and come back to any semblance of chaos on a Tuesday, I am not a happy camper.

Wanting: This water bottle (white, please!). It's a great brand with excellent reviews on every website I've looked at, but WHY does a water bottle have to be $45? I'm tempted to ask for it for my birthday anyway. New water bottles make me happy and I have a feeling I'm going to need something to cheer me up when I'm up and down 18 billion times a night feeding a hungry baby.

Needing: Recommendations for postpartum yoga pants. I don't want anything too tight (no leggings!) because I plan on wearing them in and home from the hospital, and I want a dark color because...well, light colors in that type of setting under those circumstances make me nervous. I also don't want them to look TOO much like pajamas. I almost pulled the trigger on these but I just can't decide if they look too much like pajamas or if they'd look fine with a hoodie and Nikes, too.

Hoping: That the trees and plants start budding and blooming around here soon! I have a bit of a botanical-themed art project planned for baby girl's room that ties in with her name, but the exact plant that I need to start growing is still dead from our extended winter, and I'm getting impatient. 

Friday, April 21, 2017

I don't want to write about...

Pregnancy/baby stuff. There's nothing I can say that hasn't already been said by a million women before me, and there's nothing new to report, anyway. Plus, people are super judgy about everything under the gosh darn sun and I'm over it. 9 weeks left, and please pass me a stiff drink the Tums.

All my pet peeves. I was actually on the verge of writing a pet peeves/confessions-style post this week after seeing a few done by other people, but I just don't have the energy to write about everything annoying me right now. Also, I eat up those posts when other people write them but somehow I always come across as super bitchy (even when I'm just trying to be funny).

My job. I have exactly seven weeks until I'm out of there, and while they say you're supposed to keep your stress levels as low as possible during pregnancy, I wouldn't be surprised if that place sends me into early labor.

My husband's job. Not that I can really talk about it much anyway, considering he's a police officer, but it really ruffles my feathers that we have literally had to order a security camera for the front door of our house due to some of the drug dealing scumbags he's been dealing with lately. 

My newly rekindled non-hatred (love is too strong of a word) of meal planning. I could link a bunch of recipes I've used lately, but does anyone really get excited and turn around and make the same recipes themselves? I doubt it. I never do when other people talk about what they've been cooking. Besides, this isn't a food blog.

The books I've been reading. Most of them are pregnancy/childbirth/breastfeeding/sleep training related, and nobody cares.

So...that explains the 2+ week gap in between this and my last blog post. Maybe soon I'll think of something I do want to write about.

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

So close, yet so far

Welp, here we are officially in the third trimester, and not a whole lot has changed. I feel like I've had a fairly easy pregnancy, relatively speaking, for which I will be forever grateful. Other than all-day nausea in the first trimester and some crazy heartburn/acid reflux and aching hips lately, everything has been pretty textbook so far...knock on wood.

I think my biggest struggle has still just been the weight gain, and I'm not even that far off track from where I wanted to be at this point. I'm a few pounds heavier than I'd like (who isn't) but honestly, my body's gonna do what my body's gonna do no matter how I feel about it, and I'm getting better about not looking at myself in the mirror with an instant "ughhhh" reaction. I did finally bite the bullet and order another pair of maternity jeans one size bigger than I normally would wear, and I'm so glad I did. My hips thank me every day. I can't lie, though (and neither can my hips), I have never in my life been into the "athleisure" trend (save it for the gym, please) until now. Pregnancy does weird things to your psyche, that's for sure.

We've officially decided on a name for this little girl, but plan on keeping it between us and our parents/siblings until she's born. While in Seattle, Isaiah took me out for a really nice belated anniversary dinner at Salish Lodge, overlooking Snoqualmie Falls, where we agreed to finalize our name choice. Up until last weekend, we were 95% sure we were settled on what she'll be called, but it's nice to have that final 5% of indecisiveness out of the way.

The baby's room is about finished, which is pretty comforting. I'm a huge planner and not a fan of last-minute anything, so even though we still have 12 weeks to go (give or take), I really love being able to walk into her room and not automatically have my eyes settle on twenty things that still need to be done. I have a few final projects to finish up but I'll share full room pictures at some point, I'm sure. At least by the time she starts kindergarten.

We also installed the car seat this weekend, and I'm sure all you seasoned moms are collectively rolling your eyes that we did that at only 28 weeks, but you just never know! says my boss every time I remind her I'm not due until the end of June. It's a little surreal to look in the back of our Jeep and see this little infant car seat sitting there. Some days it's SO REAL that we're having a baby, other days I feel like this has all just been a drawn out version of playing house, like when you're six years old and you think you'll get married and have a baby when you turn 18 because that's what adults do.

Now, my brain is turning to all the rest of the things I still need to do: Call our insurance company to find out how/when to add the baby to our insurance, ask about a breast pump and if/how it will be paid for, call the hospital to ask about a hospital tour and hopefully a list of things to bring/not to bring, make a list of hospital bag contents and eventually pack it, figure out which postpartum purchases I still need to make, wash all her clothes and cloth diapers before I actually need them, write out a brief birth plan (nothing crazy, just a few notes to have on hand to remind myself what I want/don't want)...I'm sure I'm forgetting a few things.

A few of my coworkers are absolutely insisting on throwing a baby shower, which is super nice, but I can't say I'm extremely close with any of them so I feel a little awkward about it. And, of course, the one coworker I am actually friends with is going to be out of town and can't come. It feels especially awkward since I'll be quitting mid-June (still a secret) and I feel terrible being like, "Thanks for all of the goodbye forever!" I also ran into two ex-coworkers at the coffee shop this last weekend who asked if I was having a baby shower and essentially invited themselves and I have no idea if that's good manners or not, inviting ex-coworkers to a baby shower being thrown by current coworkers??

My sister-in-law and mother-in-law also wanted to throw us a baby shower, but considering I/we don't really have many good friends in town or relatives other than Isaiah's immediate family, we agreed that rather than invite a bunch of acquaintances we don't really know that well, we'll just have a fun family dinner instead. My SIL is going to make a "virtual baby shower" invitation of sorts to post on Facebook, just so that friends and family who don't live here (like, all of mine) can have our registry link and what not.

I'm just not used to all this attention or people wanting to buy us stuff (I'm the girl whose birthday is forgotten by most people almost every year) and I'm feeling so weird about it all. Part of it is probably just my own hang-up, I get annoyed when people don't seem to care much about ME but now that we're having a BABY, oh, that's different!! Whatever. I know I just need to embrace it all and appreciate the fact that that's less money we have to spend ourselves, but it's just awkward.

That was a rabbit trail I did not intend on going down...I digress.

I had my 28 week doctor's appointment on Monday, and I had a sneaking suspicion I was going to hear "see you in two weeks!" at the end of the visit, and I was right. It's not that I hate the appointments themselves - love hearing that baby heartbeat! - I just find it to be a hassle. I really shouldn't complain, I literally work one block away from the clinic.

At least at my appointment I got to see one of the resident doctors for a second time. Oh, did I mention that our clinic doesn't assign patients to a single doctor? Nope, you just get to see whichever OB/family practice physician happens to be working on the day you make your appointment, and there's a rotation of 4-5 other doctors that fly in on a monthly basis to help ease the case load for the two permanent OBs. So far I have had seven visits and seen six different doctors. I definitely have my favorite two, and this week I got to see one of those two, so at least there's that. She went over my glucose screening from a month ago and said I passed with flying colors, so I celebrated that night with about a dozen Oreos. She also felt around and said this baby girl is already head down, which I know can change at any time, but it was nice to have confirmation that all the thumps and rolls I feel all day long underneath my right rib are due to a foot/feet and not hands.

I will leave you with a picture of one of my favorite baby outfits so far. I love all the florals and chambray and furry hoodies with bear ears and little leggings and onesies we've gotten, but Isaiah picked out this shirt/pants/shoe combo ($3.00 moccasins, obviously not for walking) and I love it. We did agree it needed something to make it look a little girlier, though, so we added this hat.

Friday, March 24, 2017

Life Lately #7

Reading: Slowly making my way through Natural Childbirth the Bradley Way by Susan McCutcheon. Isaiah and I are reading it out loud, which is...interesting. The actual reading of the book is totally fine, and it has a lot of good information for women who want an unmedicated birth, but the photos in this book are definitely not something I was expecting. In almost every single photo containing a woman, she is buck naked. Suffice it to say, I am reading while Isaiah listens. The book is also little bit outdated in some ways and with some of its information (the last revision was in 1996), but since there's no way for me to actually take a class on the Bradley Method, it'll suffice.

Watching: Nothing really at the moment. I've tried (and stopped) several shows lately, but nothing seems to hold my interest very long. Instead, I've been watching a lot of YouTube videos.

Listening to: Lots of Ben Shapiro podcasts while I (im)patiently wait for the new Chainsmokers album to come out on April 7th.

Wearing: Lots of layers, because apparently winter is never going to end.

Eating: Lots of chicken and lots of oatmeal. Oatmeal is one of the only things I've found for breakfast that actually fills me up for longer than a hot second, and chicken is cheap (ish) and easy to work around for dinner. Wednesday night I made BBQ chicken and pineapple pizza using this pizza crust recipe, and it turned out really well with a few tweaks I added. Next time I'm going to try half white and half wheat flour.

Loving: This gnocchi from Amazon. Yeah, you have to buy 6 packs at a time, but it's worth it if you have the space. They're dried, so all you have to do is boil them for like two minutes, then throw them in a pan with a little oil or butter to crisp them up. Then, the meal possibilities are endless. Here's one suggestion for you but really, it's not hard to be creative with these. Earlier this week I cooked them up, tossed them with pesto and some chopped up (cooked) chicken breasts and crumbled some goat cheese over the top. Marinara and sausage is another option, or use them in place of pasta in a pasta salad.

Not Loving: HEARTBURN and acid reflux and also how if I burp too soon after I swallow a mouthful of food or liquid it just wants to come right back up again. I'm pretty sure my stomach is situated right below my collarbone now.

Annoyed with: The cost of everything where I live. I was comparing some prices online to what we pay for the exact same items at our grocery store, and almost everything I found was literally three times the price. And I'm using the word "literally" properly, I promise. I can't even read blog posts about how to budget for groceries or feed your family of five for $100 a week or whatever people in the lower 48 do because it's literally (again, literally) impossible for me to do that here. And don't get me started on how our electric rates have been raised 20% in the last 6 months because we have the most incompetent city administration on the planet. Thank the good Lord above for wood stoves, that's all I have to say.

Creating: A spreadsheet that shows the cheapest prices for cleaning supplies and dry grocery goods (that will actually ship here) between our grocery store, Target and Amazon. Spoiler alert: Our grocery store is never the cheapest.

Wanting: This nail polish remover. I have never been able to wear nail polish without making my nails peel and split within a day of taking it off, and I'm pretty sure it's due to nail polish remover and not the nail polish itself. I've tried both acetone and non-acetone removers and they both wreak utter havoc on my nails. This alternative has good reviews, and I'm intrigued.

Laughing at: The checkout lady at the grocery store who pointed at my belly and said in a knowing tone, "You're having a girl?" I said yes, good guess, and asked how she was such a good guesser. She said that with both of her daughters, her belly button stayed in/flat; with her son, her belly button popped out. I'm only 27 weeks (tomorrow) so even if my belly button does eventually poke out I think it'll be a little while. 

Feeling: Pretty good other than lots of hip pain. It's not too bad in the daytime, especially if I get up and walk around a little bit off and on, but in the I feel like a 90 year old trying to get out of bed.

Anticipating: A quick jaunt to Seattle this weekend. We're flying out tomorrow morning and flying back Wednesday evening, so it's a quick there-and-back trip but we've been wanting to do a little baby shopping in person as well as get out of town one more time we have to start lugging a car seat/stroller/etc. with us. Also, the last time I saw my mom was at Thanksgiving and I was only 10 weeks pregnant and definitely not showing yet. We figured she might want to see her unborn granddaughter before she makes her grand entrance later this summer.

Friday, March 17, 2017

Myspace surveys are so fetch.

I'm stealing this from Michelle, because I have nothing better to do and nothing better to talk about. It's still snowing, I'm still running out of things to wear on a daily basis (my workout sweatpants barely fit around my hips anymore), and I'm still counting down the days until I can be done with my job.

So this is what's happening today.

Oh, and happy St. Patrick's Day. The day everyone pretends they're Irish and know who St. Patrick was.

1. What are your nicknames? What you do like to be called? As my blog title suggests, it's just Angi. My name is kind of a nickname by itself, since my parents didn't like the name Angela, but sometimes people call me Ang, and Isaiah calls me Ann on occasion. You can call me whatever you like, just don't call me Shirley.

2. What books are on your shelf begging to be read? War and Peace. No, not really, though we did find an old beat up copy at the thrift store a couple of years ago and snagged it because it looks good on our bookshelf. Truthfully, one of these days I need to read a Jane Austen book. Cue the collective gasps.

3. How often do you doodle? What do your doodles look like? I don't doodle a whole lot, but when I do, it's usually typography type stuff. I used to doodle various fonts a LOT in high school and college, and I have sloppily recreated one of my favorites for you here. Pretend it's done with multi-colored glitter pens.

4. What do you do if you can’t sleep at night? Do you count sheep? Toss and turn? Try to get up and do something productive? Dude, if I tried to get up and do something productive in the midst of a bout of insomnia, I'd never get back to sleep. Usually I just lay there, grumpy about how tired I'm going to be the next day, until I finally fall back asleep.

5. How many days could you last in solitary confinement? How would you do it? Well, I spend 90% of my time alone at home as is (cop wife problems) so probably quite a while. I don't want to commit to a number, though.

6. Do you save old greeting cards and letters? Throw them away? I usually save most of them for a while and then toss them. I try not to be a hoarder.

7. What is your dream career? A baker. If only it paid better and had better hours. I was *thisclose* to taking a baking job at a local cafe last fall, but the hours would have conflicted so badly with my husband's job that it would have been a miracle if we had two hours a week to spend together. In short, quality time is one of my top two love languages, so I passed on the job.

8. When making an entrance into a party, do you make your presence known? Do you slip in and look for someone you know? Do you sneak in quietly and find a safe spot to roost? Ha, fools, you assume I go to parties in the first place and worse, that I attend them alone.

 9. What is your strongest sense? If you had to give one up, which would it be? Good question. I personally don't think I'm terribly funny, I have an average sense of direction, and I refuse to answer this the obvious way (sight/smell/etc).

10. How many times a day do you look at yourself in the mirror? These days, I'm torn between every 5 minutes and never. Never, because I don't even recognize my own thighs anymore and it's enough of a reminder trying to pull my jeans up every morning. Every 5 minutes, because I still can't believe the size of the basketball under my shirt.

11. What’s the strangest thing you believed as a child? I don't remember believing anything particularly weird or strange. I was quite the realist as a child (still am, who am I kidding) and my friends hated me because I thought they were stupid for believing in Santa/the Easter bunny/the Tooth Fairy.

12. What is one guilty pleasure you enjoy too much to give up? Black licorice. Always and forever, amen.

13. Who performs the most random acts of kindness out of everyone you know? I'm not sure, honestly.

14. How often do you read the newspaper? Which paper? Which sections? I don't get an actual paper, but I read the news online every single day. Usually it's a mix of politics, local news and weird news.

15. Which animals scare you the most? Why? BEARS. Because coastal brown bears are some of the biggest in the country, second only to polar bears, and in the town where I live, they've been conditioned by irresponsible idiots to eat garbage. That means every single summer, we have to carry guns when we hike and stop/look/listen before walking to our cars in the morning. Did you know it was an Alaskan hunter who took the world record for biggest brown bear ever killed? NINE FEET. That's how tall that bear was.

16. Are you more likely to avoid conflict or engage it head-on? I think this totally depends on the situation and the person with whom I am conflicting.

17. What was the most recent compliment you’ve received and savored? Isaiah always tells me I'm "good at everything" but I don't necessarily think that's true, though it makes me feel good when he says it. There are plenty of things I'm not good at. Making pie crust from scratch, for example. Or drawing realistic looking things.

18. What is something about yourself that you hope will change, but probably never will? My eyesight. I have rotten eyesight which I pray I do not pass onto my child(ren). Isaiah has great eyesight, so it's 50-50 there. Someday I WILL get Lasik surgery. I will. Now who wants to lend me about 5 grand?

19. Are you a creature of habit? Yes and no. There are some things I have to keep as a habit or I won't do them. But most of the time, I get bored and change things up.

20. Are you high maintenance? Explain. Eh, I don't think so, but that'd probably be a better question for the guy that has to live with me.

21. When was the last time you really pushed yourself to your physical limits? July 2016, when we hiked the Laugavegur trail in Iceland. Between hiking 34 miles in 3 1/2 days, carrying a 30lb backpack the whole way and sleeping on the ground, it was one of the hardest and greatest experiences of my life. But I have to give birth to an actual child this summer, so we'll see which experience wins out as the hardest when all is said and done.

22. Do you have a whole lot of acquaintances or just a few very close friends? Why? I kind of have both. Living in a small island town and being married to a guy who has been here for 20+ years means I "know" a lot of people. But I don't have any actual friends here - I have a few good friends in other cities who I keep in touch with via e-mails and texting, and that's okay - though not ideal - for now.

23. Are you more inclined to “build your own empire” or unleash the potential of others? Uh, neither?

24. What’s a strange occurrence you’ve experienced but have never (or rarely) shared with anyone? Strange things don't really happen to me, especially not strange things I refuse to talk about. 

25. What do you think about more than anything else? Currently, it's a toss up between how many days are left until I get some time off with my husband and how many hours are left before I can go back to bed.

26. What’s something that amazes you? How perfectly a woman's body is designed to grow and house a live baby until that baby is ready to survive in the outside world.

27. Do you prefer that people shoot straight with you or temper their words? How about a nice combination of shooting straight in a tactful manner?

28. Where’s your favorite place to take an out of town guest? I don't ever have out of town guests, but if I did, and they were into hiking, I'd take them to the top of a mountain.

29. What’s one thing you’d rather pay someone to do than do yourself? Cut my hair.

30. Do you have a catchphrase? No, do people actually have those and do people actually think they're funny after they're said once or twice?

31. What is one of your most cherished memories? Getting married, honeymooning in Hawaii, and backpacking in Iceland.

32. How and where do you prefer to study? Never and nowhere.

33. What position do you sleep in? I used to sleep on my side but kinda tilted forward onto my stomach, but now that I have a basketball in the way, just on my side. And...

34. What’s your all-time favorite town or city? Seattle. Bet you couldn't guess that one.

35. What are the top three qualities that draw you to someone new? Kindness, able to hold a conversation, and a shared love of The Office.

36. How has your birth order/characteristics of siblings affected you? I don't really think it has, honestly, and I don't know how much stock I put in that birth order theory anyway. Most people seem to think that having siblings makes you codependent and unable to do anything alone, or that being an only child makes you super independent and/or antisocial. I have one younger sister with a completely (and I mean completely) opposite personality of my own, so we weren't that close growing up and don't even talk all that much as adults. I'm introverted and independent, thank you!

37. If you could eliminate one weakness or limitation in your life, what would it be? My shyness. It's a huge hindrance in a lot of areas. Also, my lack of upper body strength. I just want to be able to do pull ups!!

38. If you could restore one broken relationship, which would it be? The one with my dad, but a) that's impossible now due to his Alzheimers and b) there were plenty of chances for that to happen in the past and one of us was never really fully interested, so there's that. I'm fine, really!

39. If you had to change your first name, what would you change it to? Eh, I wouldn't. I've never really wished my name was anything else, though I have always wished people would spell it correctly. It bothers me less as an adult, though.

40. Do you believe ignorance is bliss? Why or why not? It depends, as usual. Sometimes, sure, but I don't want to be ignorant of a bear in my driveway and walk around my car and boom, there's 800 pounds of teeth and claws. That would not be a blissful experience.

41. What do you consider unforgivable? Eating the last piece of cake without asking if I want some.

42. Have you forgiven yourself for past personal failures? Sure. I don't like to dwell on things that can't be changed.

43. How difficult is it for you to forgive someone who refuses to apologize? I feel like "it depends" could be the answer to the majority of these questions. It depends how close I am to that person, it depends on what they did in the first place, and it depends how much what they did affects me going forward.

44. Do you hold any convictions that you would be willing to die for? I'm a Christian, so yes.

45. What three fictional characters best represent you? I have thought and thought and thought about this question and I just flat out have no idea. I have definite April Ludgate tendencies, though.

46. In what area of your life are you immature? I'm so immature I refuse to admit I'm immature.

47. What was the best news you ever received? That we're having a baby! I broke that news to myself via a pregnancy test though, does it still count?

48. How difficult is it for you to be honest, even when your words may be hurtful or unpopular? Honestly (ha ha), it's not that hard. I don't really care too much about being unpopular. However, with friends/family, I do tend to withhold a lot of my opinions until I'm either asked or in the middle of an appropriate conversation about said opinion. If I am asked, though...well, you asked.

49. When did you immediately click with someone you just met? Why? I have a couple of blog friends that I immediately clicked with, does that count? In person, probably my husband.

50. When do you find yourself singing? When you least expect it.

Thursday, March 9, 2017

Picking bones, as usual.

+ I don't really like to talk about work much on here because I rarely have anything nice to say about it and I'm paranoid someone will find it and report me, but I have to say that if I owned a business and one of my employees was having a baby, I would absolutely bend over backwards to make sure that person was able to quit/take maternity leave without guilt. Now that I'm about three months out from leaving, I'm suddenly getting suggestions like, "You could keep working and just bring the baby with you!?" and "Are you sure you can't just work from home for like...a few extra months, just to get us over the hump of changing multiple software systems at once?" No, I cannot. Lack of planning on their know the rest.

+ On a related note, it honestly surprises me how much people assume you're going to continue working after you have a baby. I feel like the attitude has switched, and I'm sure a lot of it just depends on where you live (cultural norms and all that) but I have been bombarded with questions about which daycare I'm going to use, if I'm really going to take three whole months off or if I'm just going to take a month or so and then bring the baby to work with me, if I'm going to continue working from home, and so on and so forth. Not one person has asked or assumed that I'm going to stay at home with my kids, like it's just not done these days. SO 1940s, right?

+ Forgive me, but I do not understand those in-home ball pits everyone seems to be buying for their toddlers. Are ball pits nothing short of amazing when you're a kid? Obviously. But all I can think about are balls rolling all over my house, all the time, and just the thought gives me hives. Also, it makes a perfectly good living room look like Chuck E Cheese moved in.

+ I was booking tickets for a super short trip to Seattle at the end of the month, but since the trip is two weeks away, seats were ridiculously limited. As in, the only two seats together on the way down were in the last two rows of the plane, and on the way back, there were literally six middle seats left to choose from. I'm praying now that someone will either switch us seats or not show up because I have no desire to be squashed between two strangers at 27 weeks pregnant.

HOWEVER, I digress. What I discovered during this particular ticket booking process is that Alaska Airlines, as of last November, now charges $15 extra per passenger for the privilege of sitting in an exit row. Back in my day, the extra few inches of legroom was your reward for being first in line to help other people get off the plane if it crashed. Now you have to pay extra. I didn't think I could like Alaska Airlines any less than I already did, but apparently it's possible.

+ Amazon Pantry does not ship to Alaska. Jerks.

+ The free Welcome Box that Amazon sends you as soon as someone buys something off your baby registry also does not ship to Alaska. Double jerks.

+ My biggest confession of this entire blog post, and the one that I think will probably get the most people riled up...I am not a huge fan of, nor do I ever really use the Oxford comma. Granted, there are times I will use it, if a list is particularly confusing and really needs the extra clarification (and I don't feel like rearranging the sentence). But otherwise, I think I just see such prevalent comma misuse that any extra commas, even appropriate ones, are a huge eyesore. Please don't hate me. I'm just an AP Style girl living in an Oxford comma world.

Thursday, March 2, 2017

This post was made with love.

+ I mentioned this on Twitter the other day, but it bears repeating here. Is it just me, or do baby onesies that say "Made with Love" seem awfully...awkward? It's along the same vein as people who announce their pregnancies with a photo of themselves holding a positive pregnancy test while sitting on their bed. Like...we know how you got pregnant and we know how that baby was made. Thanks.

+ I don't know how I didn't realize this until last night, but Netflix has actually added seasons two AND three of The Great British Baking Show. Commence the binging.

+ Target is a butthole. Sometime in the last few months they've apparently decided they aren't going to ship anything smaller/cheaper than furniture to Sitka. I don't have official proof of this, but the fact that I was able to order a crib and dresser but not a few maternity tanks and t-shirts without getting a "cart error" (that NOBODY there can seem to figure out) is highly suspicious. I also tested this theory by removing the clothing items and replacing them with food and toiletry items. Same error. Also suspicious is the fact that both my coworker and a random post office worker have both said they've been having the exact same issue since around Thanksgiving time.

+ Pet peeve: Sending a message to an Etsy seller about a custom order, and not hearing anything back. It's been three days and still no response. Maybe I'm overly anal about customer service, but if you own a small business, you need to make sure you're checking and replying to emails at least once a day.

+ Speaking of Etsy, I ordered a small plant (heartleaf philodendron) from a seller on there recently and it arrived yesterday. I had to pick it up at the post office, and printed on a giant green sticker across the top of the box were the words "LIVE PLANTS". Considering that marijuana is legal in Alaska, I wonder what the post office lady thinks of me now. I almost said "It's not a pot plant, I swear," but I wondered if that would look like protesting too much.

+ In music news, have you heard this Coldplay + Chainsmokers collaboration? Catchy, sweet, and two of my favorite bands. I'm obsessed and also so VERY tempted to preorder the vinyl album this song will be on.

Friday, February 24, 2017

Life Lately #6

Reading: Seeking Allah, Finding Jesus by Nabeel Qureshi. I just started it the other day so I don't have a lot to say about it yet!

Watching: Totally binging on season 2 of The Great British Baking Show on Netflix. HOW I MISSED YOU AND YOUR SASS, MARY BERRY.

Listening to: The Goo Goo Dolls' most recent album, Boxes. It's pretty darn good if you're into them at all. Different in a way from their older stuff, but not in a "they've totally jumped the shark" way.

Wearing: A few actual maternity shirts here and there, but mostly a lot of the same tops I wore pre-pregnancy. It's amazing how much you can get away with wearing when your style tends to include oversized/flowy shirts to begin with. Ask me in three more months how that's going...

Smelling: Not a whole lot at the moment. I've had a cold for over a week now. More on that in a minute...

Eating: This chicken and rice soup. I've made two batches in the last two weeks, each batch feeds both Isaiah and me for a good two or three nights, it's really easy/cheap to make, and it is delicious. There are stovetop instructions at the bottom of the recipe if you don't have an Instant Pot/pressure cooker. As usual, I leave out the onion and just throw in whatever bags of frozen vegetables I happen to have around. The first time I made it, I used corn and carrots. The second time, corn and carrots and a few leftover green beans.

Loving: Finally knowing that the baby is a girl! We're making some serious progress on her room and buying a few baby clothing items here or there, and it's just been so fun. We're not making the nursery extremely girly, probably because *I* am not an extremely girly person either, but we did spring for a floral crib sheet and I'm in love with it. I'm also in love with this Lord of the Rings print we found on Etsy. Hashtag nerd alert but seriously, how cool is this:

Not Loving: That our anatomy scan three weeks ago cost us A THOUSAND DOLLARS. $800 for the ultrasound itself, and $200 for them to send the results to some lab in Oregon who actually deciphers and reads those results. On the bright side, that's our entire 2017 deductible right there in one single office visit. On the dark side, I had way better plans for that thousand bucks.

Creating: So many projects...a baby blanket, a yarn pom-pom rug that looks like moss, a few other semi-secret projects for the baby's room...

Wanting: Someone to come and clean out my tiny little quarter-sized kitchen pantry and reorganize it for me. I'm tired of things falling on my head and feet all the time but I'm also exhausted just looking at the stupid thing. It's small, there's not enough space for an actual human family, I have a bad habit of buying new dry goods/canned goods without checking first to see if I already have what I's just a mess. 

Laughing at: Not so much laughing as completely identifying with this meme I stumbled across on Pinterest:

Feeling: Uncomfortable and sick. I managed to catch the cough/cold that's been circulating around my workplace lately, and it's been over a week and I still feel terrible. Not as bad as the first few days, but when your body is focusing on growing a person instead of fighting a virus, it's rough. I'm tired of coughing, and I'm tired of blowing my nose, and on top of it all, I think this baby's having a growth spurt or something because my stomach feels like it's stretching like crazy and the band on my maternity jeans is too tight at the top all of a sudden which makes me nauseated and just UGH. I'm enjoying being pregnant because of the reward at the end, not because I feel like some empowered rockstar superhero woman. I don't. I just feel sick. 

Contemplating: Deleting my Twitter account. The few friends I follow(ed) on there either barely use it anymore or don't use it at all, and while I do use it primarily to keep up with current events, it's still pretty boring when you're Tweeting and nobody's interacting. Because that's the main point of Twitter in the first place. Also, I'm tired of random Twitter trolls somehow finding my posts (sans hashtags, mind you) and trying to pick fights. Over it.

Wishing: Winter would hurry up and end so we can get to spring. Ha ha, who am I kidding. Spring in Alaska is the same as winter. All you people bragging about your 60 degree weather...stuff it. It snowed here yesterday.

Friday, February 17, 2017

Mountain pillows are gender neutral but this baby is not.

A week and a half or so ago, I posted a photo on Instagram saying I was celebrating being halfway done with this pregnancy by working on hand sewing a mountain pillow for the baby's room, while simultaneously wondering if it might take me the last 20 weeks to actually finish it. The other tidbit I haven't shared until now is that a few days later, we had our anatomy scan at the hospital, and we made it very clear that we did, in fact, want to know the sex of the baby.

I am happy to report that not only did it NOT take me another five months to finish that pillow, this kid also cooperated really well during the ultrasound (the one and only time you want your child to be a public exhibitionist) and we were able to find out if he or she is a he or she!

So, I would like to officially announce that we are having a GIRL!!!

We did politely ask the ultrasound tech (who has been in the business for 31 years and made it clear she is not often wrong) how sure she was, and while I can't remember her exact words, the gist of her response was, "Well, you can never be 100% positive until they're born, but that'd be a funny looking boy if it's not a girl." I lol'ed.

On a related note, baby girl clothes are quite possibly the cutest thing in the entire world and it's taking all my self control not to buy certain items in multiple sizes just so she (she!) can wear the same outfits for longer than 3.6 seconds.

I mean, just look at these... 

Tuesday, February 7, 2017

Things I like

This recipe for zuppa toscana (soup) is delicious. I made it in the Instant Pot, as the recipe suggests, but you could totally do it on the stove top. Just saute the onion, brown the sausage, add the rest of the ingredients and simmer until the potatoes are tender, then proceed with the rest of the recipe. I would recommend buying spicy ground pork sausage. It adds a little extra needed flavor. I also used spinach instead of kale. I like kale, but oftentimes it doesn't wilt enough and I don't like crunchy greens in soup.

I apologize in advance for linking to this recipe for a giant, single-serve peanut butter cookie. I only made it once a few weeks ago, but I've been dreaming about it ever since. The only reason I haven't made another one is because the only thing that freaks me out more than diastasis recti is gestational diabetes.

This trailer for the new Beauty and the Beast hits me right in my core. Right at about minute 1:50 when the orchestra fully kicks in with the theme song...oh my goodness. I have not been this excited for a movie in a long time. Come on,  March 17th!

If you need a laugh, this YouTube video of a dog who can't catch food had me crying I was laughing so hard.

If you have a Keurig, these coffee pods are delicious, specifically the Fog Chaser version. They're also some of the most inexpensive I've found. You get 80 pods for $29, which works out to about 36 cents per pod. I don't know if you'll find a better deal on Starbucks or Tully's brands at Costco or Walmart or something, but since we don't have access to any of those stores, this is the best deal we've found for the best tasting coffee.

I've tried not to buy too many maternity clothes yet, considering I can still fit in most of my pre-pregnancy shirts without too much trouble, but sometimes you just need something new to make you feel cute while your waistline is expanding and you're feeling less svelte by the day. This sweater from ASOS is technically a maternity sweater, but it doesn't look like it. There's no ruching on the sides and it's not tent-like either, so it will totally be wearable post-baby. They only have one size left, but if you happen to wear a size 8, I recommend snagging one of these. You can't beat fifteen bucks for a cute sweater with suede elbow patches.

Update: It JUST went out of stock. Sad face. Keep an eye on it, though, if it comes back you should grab one.

Please note that none of these links are sponsored - I don't play like that. They're just things I like, therefore you probably need to know about them.

Thursday, January 26, 2017

Life Lately: #5

Hey look, it stopped raining for half a minute.

Reading: The Residence: Inside the Private World of the White House. It's interesting so far, not quite what I expected but entertaining nonetheless. Mostly it's full of anecdotes, in no particular order, about various presidents and their wives/children. The one main thing being drilled into my head while reading this is the fact that White House staff members are extremely private, and it's like pulling teeth to get them to talk about their jobs, let alone tell stories (good or bad) about the presidents and families they've served. While I am on board with not speaking badly in public about your employer (especially if you're still employed), I'm also having a tough time believing that people like the Clintons were mostly peaches and cream to deal with. I guess I was hoping for the information to be a little more juicy and deep, and not just story after story of "every President is ahh-maaaaaaazing as an employer and we just looooooooove them!" Because...yeah, right.

Watching: "Lock Up: Women Behind Bars" on Netflix. Bitches be crazy, y'all.

Listening to: I cannot get enough of Closer by The Chainsmokers/Halsey. It's been on repeat over here and even though it's full of cheesy lines, I love it. It's a good driving song, too, which is perfect because it comes on the radio at least once every day on my drive home from work.

Wearing: Anything that will fit my growing stomach. I think this kid/my uterus must have some very distinct growth spurt days, because sometimes I feel perfectly normal and barely notice my stomach...other days (like today) I'm so uncomfortable, it's tight and crampy, and all I can think about all day are my sweatpants, sitting at home by the side of my bed, calling to me.

Smelling: The gas station across the street. There is nothing worse. I start smelling it between 1 and 2pm almost every single day and it gives me a headache and makes me nauseated and I spend the last two and a half hours at work alternating between breathing into my shirt's neckline and the bottom of my sleeve.

Eating: LOTS of hardboiled eggs. I'm finding it a little difficult to get enough protein without either a ton of eggs or supplementing with protein powder, since most meat still sounds disgusting and lunch meat is off the table. Good thing I like eggs. Also, on a related note, I finally found a foolproof way to make hardboiled eggs, so if you're interested, let me know and I'll share. I've made a batch of 8-10 eggs every single week for the last two-ish months and have only ruined them once, and it was completely my fault.

Loving: That Target sells (and ships!) these metal carts, somewhat akin to the IKEA carts that everyone knows about and loves. Since we don't have an IKEA here, and they won't ship to Alaska either, I was thoroughly thrilled to find a Target alternative. They don't sell them in any fun colors (gray and white only) but I was happy enough to find them in general, so the gray is fine with me.

Not Loving: When grandparents die, and you're 99% sure they weren't born again when they passed away. It's just so much more sad, even if you weren't all that close to them.

Annoyed with: Some family situations that are presently draining my mental energy. Not the aforementioned grandparent situation...just some other stuff that isn't immediately resolving itself and it's kind of getting me down.

Creating: Nothing at the moment, but I think I might attempt something like this. I'm trying to determine whether or not I have the patience for it. 

Wanting: To know if these little flutters I've been feeling for the last few days are baby kicks, or just my intestines shifting around. They're in the same general area every time, they feel...different...than gas bubbles or stomach rumblings, and while they've mostly only been happening in the mid-afternoons while I'm sitting at my desk at work, I felt the same little wiggly feeling last night while watching television. I'm almost 19 weeks along, so...maybe?

Laughing at: This graphic I found online (for the life of me, I can't remember where). I can't say I'm mad at a lot of the things that President (whut?) Trump has done in the first few days of his tenure, but I'm also in favor of calling things like I see them, and the "alternative facts" comment from Kellyanne Conway was, in a nutshell, asinine. Therefore, I found this to be quite hilarious:

Feeling: Overall okay, just uncomfortable, as previously mentioned. And also ready to quit my job like...yesterday. 

Hoping: That Isaiah can get a little bit of time off before this kid is born so we can take a trip to Seattle to see my mom and go on a hike near Mt. Rainier that we've been drooling over. Of course they're already short handed at the department, and now two more people are quitting (with nobody new hired, by the way) and they've all been informed by their lieutenant that "no more leave requests will even be considered until we figure out our staffing situation." Furthermore, they should all expect to work a lot of overtime over the next few months. Boo hiss, and I can't think about it too much or I will angry cry.

Anticipating: The return of The Husband this weekend. He's been in Las Vegas for a work training since Sunday, and the days until Saturday when he gets home have been ddddrrrraaagggiiinnnggg. It's been a struggle not to just eat pints of ice cream for dinner. 

Thursday, January 12, 2017

I have things to say about this whole "pregnancy" business.

+ I always knew I had a somewhat small bladder, but holy crap. The last week or two, I've actually started to get a legit baby bump (freaking finally), which naturally is making me have to pee more often. Here's the problem, and why that's especially annoying: Sometimes I have to pee SO BAD, so I go to the bathroom, and then all of ten seconds later, I'm finished. I feel like there should be a whole lot more liquid in there than that, but no. Ten seconds and I'm done, and 30 minutes later I have to do it all over again. Darn you, tiny bladder and increased water intake.

+  When I was a kid, I loved cow milk...I loved it so much that my mom eventually had to turn into the legit milk police and limit me to one cup of milk per meal, otherwise I would go through gallons a week. Then, as I got older, milk somehow turned disgusting to me. I couldn't even stomach the taste of it in my mouth unless it was baked into a cake or something. I haven't had an actual glass of milk in at least a decade, probably longer. Until this morning. I was starving, I ran out of Greek yogurt, I had a bag of granola stashed in my desk drawer and there was a half gallon of 2% milk in the fridge at work, and I thought...what the heck, I'll try it. At least there's protein in milk, right? I figured I could choke it down for the baby.

I have never tasted anything so good in my life. After years of utterly despising that nasty, fatty, milky taste in my mouth, I ate my granola and DOWNED the rest of the milk and had a brief moment where I even considered going back for seconds. I managed to find my self control so I didn't finish the rest of that community container of milk intended for coffee, and I probably won't make a habit of swapping my usual almond milk for cow milk any time soon, but I'm still in shock over this situation.

+ Maternity jeans are life. For the last few weeks, I've just been using the rubberband trick while still wearing my regular jeans. I could have continued doing that, but they were starting to dig into my stomach and cause some serious pain after sitting at my desk at work for any length of time. Cue the maternity jeans. I bought this pair by H&M for half price on eBay (brand new!) and glory hallelujah, I can breathe again and I don't have permanent indents in my waistline from seams and buttons. I should have started wearing them two weeks ago.

+ I'm finally over that hump of feeling just plain old fat and out of shape, praise the Lord. It's been a rough month. Everyone tells you to just embrace it, it won't last, your body's going to change shape anyway so might as well get used to it, yadda yadda, but I've worked HARD for the last two years to get into really good shape. We're talking strict eating habits, going to the gym regularly, reuniting with the treadmill, hiking for miles and miles on mountain after mountain, and so on and so forth. Working that hard to be happy with your body and then suddenly gaining weight and not being able to do jack squat about it is like working for two years to declutter your home, changing your shopping habits, sticking to a strict cleaning schedule, and then having someone bring a truckload of trash to your house, dump it in your living room and say, "There's nothing you can do about this, just get used to it! Embrace it! Live with it! It's for the baby!" Not fun, especially with first trimester sickness and being simultaneously so nauseated and so tired that eating right and working out are not even in the realm of possibility.

But I'm doing better now. I'm working out, I'm back to eating the way I (mostly) like to eat, and these maternity jeans have the added bonus of slimming my waistline while simultaneously making my belly look like there's actually a baby in there, not like I've been eating Thanksgiving dinner every night.

+ I honestly would like to know how people have the patience to wait to find out their baby's sex until it's born. I've been having to stop myself from even looking at baby clothes online, because most gender neutral stuff is not that cute, and it's pointless to shop when we won't know for another couple of weeks what we're having. It's hard when you know your baby has been a boy or girl since the moment of conception, but you have to wait FIVE MONTHS to find out whether he is a he or she is a she.

+ Confession: I am absolutely terrified - terrified - of somehow getting diastisis recti. My stomach and abs (ahem, or lack thereof) have always been the area of my body I've been most self conscious of, and I am paranoid that after the baby is born, I won't be able to go back to working out like I was before. I am paranoid that my abs are going to split apart completely and I'll forever look six months pregnant.

I'm not worried about giving birth. I'm worried about what's going to happen afterward.

+ Confession #2: This might be the most ridiculous baby "must have" that I have ever seen. Whatever did parents do before they had a $165 cushion to lay their baby on!? And don't forget the cover! That'll only run you another $60, turning this into a $200+ miniature mattress. Eyerolls for days, not sorry about it.

It's a good thing minimalism is somewhat popular these days because I don't get as many weird looks when I say that no, we're not buying a swing or Boppy pillow and no, we're not buying a crib and a changing table and a dresser and no, we're not planning to buy $60 crib sheets or $50 baby moccasins and no, we're not buying a stupid Dock-a-Tot.