{21 Weeks}

{#tgibf} Hope y’all enjoyed the kickoff to Football season! Baby Santie is growing, and I think this mama only has a few weeks left fitting into my jersey comfortably. 🙂

21weeks

Well this was a crazy week for sure! It was the first week of Kindergarten for my littles. And therefore pretty tiring for me. Plus, add all the extra running round {quite literally sometimes}, and on my feet time – well I repulled my calf muscle that was an old injury from a few years ago. Then of course my ankle started acting up. Well, it put me out of commission this weekend. I didn’t even get my photo done yesterday like I needed to! So this week’s photo is technically not quite a 21 week photo, but close enough! 🙂

IMG_9041-1Week: 21

Feelings: A little frustration at times. People keep saying to me “WOW, you FINALLY look pregnant.” As though I’m choosing the size I am, or how my baby/stomach are growing. People. I EAT. All the time. I even have to force myself to eat because I don’t have a huge appetite. It is just so frustrating. I’m sure they mean well, but I swear people don’t think before the speak sometimes! I would never comment on someone who looks *too* big for how far along they are. It’s not my fault I’m petite! *sigh*

Cravings: This week it’s been cheese!  🙂

Symptoms: Started feeling some minor hip pain while sleeping at night toward the end of the week. And some general achiness from my tummy growing. Baby has some active phases! Usually morning and evening and boy does he get moving! Lots of kicks, stretches, punches and even hiccups sometimes!

xoxo

{18 Weeks}

Well – it’s happened. I’ve gotten my first cold while pregnant. This is giving me a not so exciting look into what my school year will be like! Eek. Being sick and not being able to take medicine is rough. That’s typically how I power through and still remain productive. Thankfully I was able to rest most of the weekend. And of course – it is back to work {full days of training} this week! Anyway, I had this picture taken and ready to post days ago, but have spent the majority of the weekend either on the couch, in bed or a combination of the two! Better late than never, right?! 😉

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Week: 18

Feelings: Tired – but mostly because of this cold. I’m also getting super impatient! I can’t wait for our anatomy scan during the 20th week. And, if I must admit it, I’m feeling a little self-conscious about my bump. It is flat around my belly button! Ha. Not sure if it is because I had my belly button pierced for like, 13 years? Potential scar tissue? Or is my bump going to be deformed for the whole pregnancy? Sigh. I hope it rounds out. {I know, I shouldn’t be self-conscious, pregnancy is beautiful… but seriously. It looks… odd. ;)}

Cravings: SOUR CANDY!

Symptoms: Started feeling some stretching and ligament pain Saturday which I am excited for. It means my belly and baby are growing! And of course, as the chalkboard says, I have started feeling little movements. Baby Santie loves kicking, especially in the late afternoon. I think they are going to be an active baby – they were moving like crazy even during my 8 and 13 week ultrasound!

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Oh – and this week Winston couldn’t resist. I got photobombed. 😉 Peek a boo W! The whole baby thing, and not being able to lay all over Mommy is confusing him.

xoxo

{17 Weeks}

Ahhh it is almost the end of week 17! Crazy how time flies. And speaking of… I am back into the swing of things at work. I spent the entire week working in my classroom. It felt good to not be rushed this year {we had just moved into a brand new building last year and had less than a week to unpack, organize and get set up!}. But I can’t believe the week is already over. I have trainings for the next few weeks, and then back to school September 2! Where did the summer go?

The only good thing about summer ending is… you guessed it… SEAHAWKS! Preseason football is back! And because of it, I totally spaced on posting this picture until now. Good thing I’m a great multi-tasker. I’m watching the game and posting at the same time. Pure. Talent. 😉

In honor of Blue Friday my chalkboard this week is blue and green themed. Pretty fun!

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Week: 17

Feelings: Pretty good this week! My fatigue has started to lessen. I am so thankful! I hope I can manage to keep this up through September. That is the most exhausting month ever. OH and I managed to pull my neck {all the way into my back} like no body’s business – couldn’t even turn my head. Everyone kept asking “What did you do!?”  Well… short answer? I turned my head. Yeah. I’m THAT good. Haha!

Hmm.. and as I type I think I’m ready for that bump to even out. I wonder how long it will be before it rounds out. Or maybe its because people say I’m carrying low. Hmm.. things to ponder.

Cravings: Nothing in particular this week. Oh – peanut butter and crackers! I haven’t had that in so long. Yum!

Symptoms: Just some aches {growing aches – yay!}, and my acne is starting to decrease slightly. Thank goodness! This is worse than anything I had as a teenager. I will be so thankful when this is gone!

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GOOOO HAWKS! Can’t wait for the regular season to kick off. And this rain is welcome to come back more frequently also. I’m ready for cozy clothes and snuggly nights. Hope everyone enjoys the game and has an awesome weekend!

xoxo

Birthday mission: Creamsicle Cupcakes!

Today is my birthday! Woo hoo! 🙂

I have done tons of research the past few weeks to find the *perfect* birthday treat. I decided a while ago that I need a tropical vacation, life is so busy right now I want to scream at times, and our weather is disgusting! So, I figured, what better way to get a vacation than through a dreamy cupcake?! 😉 I was torn between these creamsicle cupcakes and a pina colada cupcake. I fell in love with this creamsicle cupcake because it is filled with a creamy vanilla mousse. It sounded so good!

And you know what?

IT IS.

🙂

Well, off to birthday dinner. Enjoy the cupcakes!

Creamsicle Cupcakes

Cupcake Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 2/3 cup granulated white sugar
  • 3 large eggs, best if not refrigerator cold
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon of pure orange extract
  • 1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 cup milk, best if not refrigerator cold

Vanilla Mousse Filling Ingredients:

  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1 (4 serving) package vanilla Instant Pudding Mix (not Cook & Serve)

Orange Cream Cheese Frosting Ingredients:

  • 1 8-ounce package of cream cheese, room temperature
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, room temperature
  • 1/2 teaspoon clear vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon orange extract
  • 4 cups confectioners’ sugar
  • orange sprinkles or sanding sugar, if desired

Directions:
*Note: This recipe makes twice as much mousse as you need for filling the cupcakes. If you want to use half the pudding pack and save the rest for later, just measure it out and do so. Or use the extra mousse for another project (you know, like eating it with a spoon).

  1. Make cupcakes: Line two muffin tins with paper liners. Preheat oven to 350°F. In a small bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, and salt. In a separate, medium bowl, cream butter and sugar together until light, fluffy, and pale yellow. Add the eggs in one at a time, beating after each, and then beat in the vanilla and orange extract. Add the dry ingredients in, alternating with the milk, in three additions. Begin and end by adding the dry ingredients. Scrape down the sides of the bowl periodically.
    Fill the paper liners about 2/3 full of batter and bake cupcakes for 15-20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out with just a few moist crumbs. Remove cupcakes from the oven and let cool completely.
  2. Make mousse: To make the vanilla mousse, combine milk, cream, and pudding mix in a medium bowl. Beat with a mixer until you reach soft peaks, or a thick whipped cream consistency (this takes a few minutes). Refrigerate mousse until you’re ready to use it.
  3. Make frosting: To make the frosting, cream butter and cream cheese together until fluffy in a large bowl. Add extracts and mix. Add sugar gradually, mixing as you go, and then beat the frosting until smooth and creamy. Cover the bowl with a damp cloth until ready to use.
  4. Assemble cupcakes:  To fill the cupcakes, use the Cone Method: cut an upside-down cone out of the top of each one. Cut off the tip of the cone (and eat it, if you wish) leaving just the “lid.” Fill the cavity with mousse using a piping bag or zip-top bag with the corner cut off, and then replace the “lid” to give you a relatively smooth surface to frost. Use a piping bag or zip-top bag to pipe on the frosting. Sprinkle on orange sanding sugar, if desired.

Source & Recipe: Willow Bird Baking, originally adapted from My Baking Addiction

49/52: Going with the flow…

Ahh, there is nothing quite like the unexpected. Am I right? You have your near future {meaning the next week or so} all planned out in your pretty little head, and then… BAM. It is out the window, just like that! Or, envision another, similar, slightly more detailed scenario if you will. You are grocery shopping for the week after planning out meals and treats for you and your husband/family, when you receive a call that stops you dead in your tracks. Before you jump to the wrong conclusion, everyone is fine. Nobody is hurt, and everyone is still with us. Thank the good Lord! I just received a very unexpected call that kind of put a damper on my holiday spirit. However, I am trying my hardest to not let it get the best of me!

When we met and began dating, my husband was working out-of-town and I would only see him on weekends. Some weekends he would work straight through and I would drive up to visit him, while other weekends he’d come home. It wasn’t ideal but we were head over heels crazy for each other, so we made it work. Each time we said goodbye it was heart wrenching. But as they say, distance makes the heart grow fonder. And so it does! After all, here we are 3 years later, happy as can be and still madly in love.

A little ways into our relationship I decided to purchase a little photo album for Johnny so he could take pictures of us with him wherever he was. Through the years I added new pictures each time he left town. But, it has been almost, geez, a year and a half, if not longer since he has left town. He has been working for a fantastic company, and was made the ‘yard’ welding foreman. Best benefit? No major travelling {Or so we thought}. Anyway, needless to say, the album is out of date and we don’t really print pictures anymore. Who still prints pictures? 😉

Well, as you can determine through reading my last few paragraphs, my husband has been called out-of-town. There was an accident up north and a nitrogen tank rolled off of a barge while it was in transport. This fantastic company my husband works for happens to own 1 of 2 cranes that could pick this large, 475 ton tank out of the water {details here}.In fact, I think both of the cranes are going to have to work together {two separate companies} to pick this big contraption! Yippee. So, off my hubby goes tonight. He’ll be gone nearly all week. Yes, I am totally throwing myself a small pitty party here. 😉

I’ve started gathering things for him and realized I should pull out his old ‘travel’ photo album for the trip. Unfortunately we don’t really have any recent pictures printed thanks to our computers and iPhones. However, I was able to find just a few to add. This has made so many memories surface, and makes me so thankful for where our life is now compared to where it used to be. I am doing everything within my power to make this trip easier for him.

I’m curious… leave me a response in the comments section of this entry. What things do you do for your spouse/significant other to support them? Do you have any traditions or cutesy things you do for each other {writing each other notes, etc.}?? This happening made me realize that I haven’t written all the sweet, cute notes I used to write him. It was a great reminder to keep the little things going… no one gets tired of knowing they’re loved and appreciated! 🙂

Let your loved one know you’re thinking about them today!

47/52: Wednesday Words of Wisdom – Gratitude

Considering tomorrow is Thanksgiving, and I have quite a bit to accomplish before then. Yes, I have put off my final grocery shopping for Thanksgiving baking/cooking until today — however in my defense, we just decided to do a small Thanksgiving of our own this last weekend. I have no excuse for putting off buying baking ingredients though. 😉 Rather than posting a yummy recipe, I thought we could all use some words of wisdom to start our day and put us in an appropriate mindset for the holiday tomorrow. Thanksgiving is probably one of my favorite holidays. I have so much to be gracious for – I try to live my life with gratitude everyday but I welcome the time to reflect and be thankful for everything that we so often look past. I enjoy this holiday the most because it is about family, and enjoying each other’s company. I am greatly looking forward to tomorrow!

What Thanksgiving traditions does your family have? What are you thankful for this holiday?

 

Happy early Thanksgiving to everyone. I hope you have a blessed holiday!