Saturday, November 30, 2013

Day 23 - If I Won the Lottery

Ooooohh - how much money are we talking about? ;D 

- First of all, I'd pay off any sort of debt either Mike or I have. I'd also like to give back to those who have financially helped us in the past few years.

- I'd get everything Mike and I need to have our dream wedding. I'd also pay to fly my parents my stepmother, my maid of honor and my out of town bridesmaids here to attend the wedding.

- I would love to be able to build a house with Mike. One with a finished basement and a room separate for Mike to have a recording studio and keep all of his band equipment. Preferably a house with 5 bedrooms, one of which being a master - I would love it to have a bathroom with a double sink. I'd also love to have a den or a front room with french doors, where I can paint shoes and scrapbook; sort of a woman cave. :) I'd like a two car garage, but have a shed in the fenced-in back yard, big enough to keep a car for Mike to work on.

- I'd get a minivan - since Mike and I would like to have a big family, it would be a great investment! 

- I'd put money away for Vincent and our future children's education. 

- I would give Mike the money he needs to put into a car project - he loves doing them and I know it would be a hobby he'd really enjoy. I am sure that our son (maybe other children in the future!) would LOVE to help dad work on the car too, which is another plus! :)  
I'd donate a percentage to Cure Search. This non-profit foundation is all about finding a cure for childhood cancer. I've gotten to know so many children and families in the past few years who are dealing with this horrible monster and have seen too many children taken too soon. I want to contribute to finding a cure.

- I'd use the rest of the money to help out and support any family members in crisis. Anything left over for that, I would put into savings for our family. 
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Friday, November 29, 2013

Day 22 - My Worst Habits

1. Being a perfectionist
I constantly feel the need to do everything perfectly, which is something you should not ever expect from yourself or anyone or anything else. Things just aren't perfect and neither are people. It's not in our nature. But I, more often than not, feel the need to have everything be just right and it causes me a lot of unneeded stress. I tend to obsess about little things like having objects be in a certain order, have the dishwasher be loaded a certain way...things that are really not worth making a fuss over. I know I sometimes drive Mike insane with it and I am trying my absolute best to work on it!

2. Being negative
I've never been a terribly optimistic person. Although it has gotten a LOT better throughout the years, it is something I continue to struggle with. When I was little, my dad had to create a rule that before I say anything negative about my day, I have to name at least one thing that was good. This earned me the nickname Eeyore. When I was diagnosed with agoraphobia, I started a project for a year and stuck with it. Every day, I'd take a picture and write a few sentences about the best part of my day. EVERY single day, no matter if it was seeing a great movie or just eating a yummy meal. It has helped me correct this habit. 

3. Putting things of till the last minute
This was especially bad while I was in school (although it got much better in college). I would do homework assignments and projects the night before they were do until all hours of the night and I would always be stuck cramming for tests. By organizing my time and making schedules for myself the past few years, it has gotten so much better. But that temptation is ALWAYS there. I find myself having to mentally smack myself on the hand often and tell myself to just get it done as soon as it is put on the to-do list! Because when you have obligations as an adult like paying your bills and going grocery shopping, you can't afford to put things off! 
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Day 21 - What Makes Me Sad

Since I started this blog later in the month, this particular challenge fell on Thanksgiving and I did not want to do it on that day. Which is why I am posting this later. 

I could make a post like I did with what makes me happy, but I've been trying my hardest to not concentrate on the bad or negative lately, which is why I will make this post short. 

What truly makes me sad is how screwed up this world is. I want to say the world has become a very hateful place, but unfortunately, it really always has been. Rarely ever do you see people take the time out of their busy days to be kind to others and rarely ever do you see people perform completely selfless acts of kindness. 

I feel that instead of people living each day like it is their last, appreciating all they have, life is just one big competition. It's all about who is the most wealthy, who has the nicest things, who is the most beautiful, who the most handsome and I could go on with this list forever. Those who do not meet the "standard" or fall below it are made to feel like absolute dirt, particularly by the media. For this reason, the depression rate, particularly in our country, is through the roof and this is no surprise to me what so ever.

I almost find this fitting to mention today, with it being black Friday. When it comes to the decisions other people make, I do my best not to judge. I want to live my life the way I see fit and others should and will do the same. I am generally not a person to sit here and go off on certain groups of people and how they choose to do things - I wouldn't want anyone criticizing my way of living either. But I can't help but be overwhelmed and saddened by the fact that right after people have given thanks for what they have, they run right out the door to go and fight, shove and call people names, just to shop for a bunch of crap they don't need. It completely defeats the purpose of Thanksgiving and I refuse to ever participate in it. 

I don't understand why people can't just enjoy the little things in life and cherish time with family and friends. Life is so short and the things that people choose to focus on primarily are so irrelevant in the long run. I admit to concentrating on these things far too often; "Do my clothes look nice enough? Am I pretty enough? Am I skinny enough? Will I be accepted for who I am?" The fact that it's almost become instinct to have this mindset, is what makes me truly sad and the fact that it just seems to be getting worse through the years.

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Wednesday, November 27, 2013

26 Weeks Pregnant

I know I promised that I'd add a chalkboard picture last week, but with Mike not coming home until Friday and being so sick, I decided to just wait until this week!

How far along? 26 Weeks today. I finally hit the double digits yesterday - I have 98 days left in my pregnancy! :D I'm so excited to meet our little man!
Total weight gain/measurements: I'm back down to 148 lbs (according to my home scale) from getting so sick this week. According to the scale at the midwifery, I weigh 149 and have only gained half a pound since my last visit. My midwife is a bit concerned I have not gained more, so she'd like for me to up my calorie intake and eat in between meals. She actually told me to go get a milkshake after my appointment today! Haha
Maternity clothes: Same as last week. 
Stretch marks? Not yet
Sleep: Sleep was not great this week with the nausea. It felt like the whole room was spinning. I would sleep, wake up, get sick and the whole thing would repeat several times until morning. I actually had to keep the bedside lamp on a few nights in a row for this reason. It has been much better the past few nights. Since Mike got back, we've been going to bed by 10 PM at the latest every night. (Which is a huge deal for us, since we are total night owls and could stay up all night xD) Mike has to be up early for work now and I think this routine will really aid my sleep! 
Best moment this week: Mike coming home! :)
Miss anything?: Being able to put on socks without a hassle! Since it's gotten colder, I've put my TOMS aside for the rest of the winter and switched to shoes with socks. (Hey, I live in New Mexico - give me a break!) It is so difficult to put the darn things on now! 
Movement: Vincent is a ridiculously crazy kicker! I love feeling him kick, but I must admit it makes it hard to sleep, especially with him being most active at night. I will occasionally sing or rock myself back and fourth in bed and it really calms him down. Mike putting his hand on my belly tends to calm him down too. Sometimes he will even fall asleep. :) It's very cute!
Food cravings: Blah. No. Nothing this week. 
Anything making you queasy or sick? GARLIC. I have found a nasty morning sickness culprit. And I didn't realize what it was until this weekend. The day Mike left, I made myself noodles with garlic and I was fine that night! But the next few days, I got incredibly sick. I was vomiting several times a day and I could not keep any food down at all. I felt like I had a really bad stomach bug - it was absolutely miserable, especially while being home alone. But I had no fever or chills, so I'm thinking it was what I ate. So I've completely changed my diet. I am eating mostly bland foods and have begun to eat even slower. I now force myself to stay seated completely upright for at least two hours after eating as well, so that my food can digest properly. It has gotten so much better and I haven't thrown up in a few days. 
Gender: Boy :)
Labor signs: Nope
Symptoms: The strain in my ligament has almost completely healed, so that's gone! (Yay!) This week I've been getting bad acid reflux, which I believe may have some connection with me getting so sick last week, since that's around the time it started. This is part of the reason I've changed my diet and started to sit upright after eating, because it really helps. I think it could be heartburn too, but I'm just not sure. It feels like I've got this burning, uncomfortable lump in my chest and throat and it makes me want to gag and throw up. Almost like I need to burp, but because I can't, I just sort of get these strange hiccups. The nausea has been better the last couple of days, but it has been a pretty constant symptom since...well the beginning of my pregnancy! I am hoping that the bad spell this last week just had to do with that garlic though, because I was really doing a lot better before that happened! 
Another is back pain - I feel like just a trip to the grocery store leaves me wobbling to the car. And the scary thing is that this is just the beginning, since I'm going to get so much bigger! (Yikes!) I know I've probably said this before, but my heating pad has become my best buddy! Even having it on a low setting right where my muscles have tightened up is the most soothing thing in the world and almost always relieves the pain. 
Man the symptoms part is always damn long, I feel like I'm always complaining! Sorry! It seems like every week, I get a new symptom and when that one goes away, another one comes up. Pregnancy is definitely keeping me on my toes! It will be good though to be familiar with all of these during my next pregnancy though.
Belly button in or out? Still just half way out!
Happy or moody most of the time: Happy, anxious, excited....way too many emotions to keep track of and they cycle through way too many times in one day! Gotta love hormones!   
Looking forward to: Thanksgiving! I probably won't be stuffing my face as I normally would, but I'm looking forward to being in good company, listening to music, doing embroidery with my mother in law and doing puzzles. :) I wish I could see my parents this holiday season too, but I'm grateful my brother will be there and we will be with Mike's family, whom I've grown very close with these past years! :)

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26 Week Appointment

Finally just got home! I had my glucose test today and quite frankly, I had been dreading it after all the horror stories I'd heard about it making some women pass out or throw up. The fact that I have been really nauseous this past week and was nauseous this morning did not help. 
As you have probably read more times than you've wanted to, I pretty much only drink water, so I was not keen on having to down this drink in under 5 minutes. It tasted like flat soda with a really tangy and strange after taste. It would have been a lot better if I could have had a glass of water immediately after drinking this, but you are not allowed to eat or drink anything for an hour after downing it. I was actually surprised and rather glad that they did my whole check up and everything while we were waiting the hour, which made it go by so much faster!

My midwife is a bit concerned about my lack of weight gain. When I first got pregnant, I weighed 153 on my home scale. I went all the way down to 140 in a matter of weeks and gaining weight back has been a two steps forward, one step back process. I weighed in at 149 at the appointment today, which is only half a pound up from what I weighed a month ago at my last appointment. So I was instructed to increase my calorie intake and to eat between meals. I was literally ordered to go and drink a milkshake after my appointment! (How often does your doc ask for you to do that? ;D) 

I was prescribed more zofran to help with the nausea and was instructed to get in touch with them right away if I can't keep food down for 24 hours straight. I probably should have called last week, but I'm glad it got better on its own! I'm so glad I have something to take to help the nausea, because some days, I can not eat without it. 

We got a kick out of Vincent, who was totally hamming it up while my midwife tried to find the heartbeat. He kept kicking the doppler off me! Little stinker! His heartbeat was 144 today. It cracks me up that I was thinking he might be a girl, based off the fact that the heartbeat had been in the 160s before I found out the gender, then it dropped down to the 140s! 

Since they weren't able to get a very good view of Vince's spine during my anatomy scan, they are going to schedule me for another ultrasound in about a month. (Awesome!!) They just want to make 100% certain that everything is developing okay. I am actually really excited to get a second ultrasound and I know Mike will be too. But as far as measurements go, he is growing right on schedule and doing great!

Another thing my midwife mentioned; since a family member of mine had a bad reaction to anesthesia, she encourages me to not get an epidural. I really don't want to get one anyway unless absolutely necessary, but that is just one more motivational factor to try my best to get through labor without it. (Please cross your fingers for me!)  

After the check up, I had my blood drawn and got both my Rh shot and my flu shot. >.< You'd think that with a face full of holes and a tattoo that I wouldn't give a hoot about getting poked, but I really hate it. I don't care who you are - shots are no fun, period! 

Well, I drank my milkshake, went to the grocery store and now, I'm about ready to take a nap! :)
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Day 20 - What Makes Me Happy

snuggling with Mike ♥ feeling my son kick  the scent of vanilla ♥ christmas music ♥ listening to classic rock in the car ♥ going to concerts ♥ skyping with my parents ♥ snuggling with puppies and kitties ♥ cookie monster ♥ fall leaves ♥ painting shoes ♥ the guitar ♥ a fresh manicure or pedicure ♥ hearing children laugh ♥ being in good company ♥ family activities ♥ watching scrubs ♥ a good sense of humor ♥ snow days ♥ music in general ♥ making people smile ♥ planners and stationary ♥ colorful pens ♥ scrapbooking ♥ taking my camera on nature walks ♥ converse ♥ kitties purring ♥ getting happy mail ♥ singing ♥ butterflies ♥ bike rides ♥ longboarding ♥ the cool side of the pillow ♥ going to the opera ♥ quentin tarantino movies ♥ freshly popped popcorn ♥ a clean house ♥ decorating ♥ VW busses ♥ beautiful landscapes

I could probably go on forever, but that's all I can think of for now! :) It's the little things in life that make me happy!
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Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Day 19 - My Favorite Movie

Oh gosh...I have got so many favorites! If I were forced to pick a single one, though, it would have to be Almost Famous. I am a huge fan of Cameron Crowe and he did a phenomenal job directing this film. Aside from loving classic rock and the music in this film, I'm also in love with the atmosphere. It makes me want to go back in time and be on that bus touring with them and singing "Tiny Dancer". If you have not watched this movie yet, I highly recommend you do! 

I absolutely HAVE to name 4 more though, so that I have a top 5! I just don't think I could complete this post without including these!

The Princess Bride
I think I was probably about 7 or 8 the first time I watched this movie and it has been one of my favorites ever since. It was also the first movie I ever watched with Mike and I am glad it will stay a favorite in our family. :) I'll admit to have the whole damn thing memorized, because I've seen it so many times! If you're into "Fencing, fighting, torture, revenge, giants, monsters, chases, escapes, true love....miracles...", then you must see this movie! Besides that, it's hysterical!

Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas
Hunter S. Thompson? Johnny Depp? Need I say more? I can't tell you how many times I've read the book and watched the movie and it just never gets old. Johnny Depp portrayed this character so perfectly and I can not get over how amazing his acting is in this movie! And of course, the setting is in the 70s, so I adore the music.

The Green Mile
This was the first movie to ever make me cry. Sob big crocodile tears, if I'm completely honest. It gets me every single time. I don't know what it is about Tom Hanks, but his acting really emotionally draws me into a movie. 

Alice in Wonderland
The cartoon. I've loved it ever since I was little and it is definitely my favorite Disney film! It's just that perfect mix of beautiful, trippy and strange. I could just escape into that world! I get a kick out of watching it in German, because a lot of the dialogue makes ABSOLUTELY no sense at all which makes it even more trippy and cool! xD Another one I really liked was the TV Movie Hallmark version with Tina Majorino, Martin Short and Robbie Coltrane. 

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Monday, November 25, 2013

Day 18 - A Photograph of Myself

I was planning on taking a photograph today to use for this entry, but I decided to use this one instead, since it's a little different. This is actually a still frame from a video shoot for Mike's band. I didn't know the camera was rolling at the time, so I was surprised when our friend, who was behind the camera that day, showed me this picture. It's so interesting to see how much different you look in a photo, when you don't know it's being taken! I can't tell you exactly what it was that I was thinking about at the time, but I can tell you for sure someone may have needed to snap their fingers in front of my face to bring me out of whatever daydream I was in the middle of!
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Sunday, November 24, 2013

Day 17 - My Favorite Blogs

Since I have SO many blogs I follow, I will only include the three I've been following for a few years, since the time I became interested in blogging myself. All four of these ladies have inspired me so much in several aspects and on top of that have really helped me develop a love and passion for blogging. I have them to thank for it!

Murderotic's Blog:
I've been following Angelica's blog the longest. I came across her on Tumblr before I even made my own blog and continue to love how real this girl is. She is her own person and doesn't let society and the "norm" dictate the way she lives her life. She is very positive, open and humorous and I always enjoy reading her blog. Being a not so ordinary young adult myself, it's inspiring to see someone like her, living the way that makes her the most happy and doesn't let anyone's negative opinions change her. 

I Heart Organizing:
Jen is my hero. She really is - this woman can turn any space into organized beauty and it is my dream to one day have a house as beautifully decorated and organized as hers. She and her incredibly talented group of guest bloggers have great tips, tutorials and DIY projects that they share on a daily basis - this blog always has brand new content! I Heart Organizing also includes awesome giveaways that are fun to partake in.

Anna Saccone:
I've always loved Anna's blog, but even more so through my pregnancy. I first stumbled across it by watching her weekly pregnancy vlogs on YouTube and have been following it ever since! She is the one who inspired me to do my bump updates every week.

Little Baby Garvin:
Jessica is the woman who has inspired so many women to do weekly pregnancy chalkboard photos, including myself. So I give a lot of credit to her for my chalkboard pictures - without her, I honestly never would have thought of doing something so cool! I love her creativity and sense of style - I always enjoy reading her posts!

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Saturday, November 23, 2013

Day 16 - Thoughts on Education

In my opinion, education needs to be made a much bigger priority in this country. I know it's a little different in every state and it's difficult for me to judge, only having gone to school up until 3rd grade here, but the system here in the US is really flawed.

As they are here, public schools in Germany are state-run and free. You do have to pay a small fee per year per child (or for three children if you have three or more), but that's it. You get a very good education going to a public school in Europe in general - in most cases, you can compare it to the education you'd get when attending a private school here in the US.
My wish would be for the United States to provide that same quality education to all children, without families having to spend 10k or more a year per child to send them to a private school. It's difficult enough for most folks to even think about creating a college fund for their children, let alone while having to spend so much per year, elementary through high school.

Now that being said, I've met many, many highly educated and intelligent Americans who attended public schools, my parents being two of them. But I fear the system is just becoming worse and worse and I fear for my children. 
Besides that; I know the media more often than not misrepresents events and occurrences to scare us, but every single horror story I hear makes me cringe. Between kids being arrested for things as ridiculous as doodling on a desk, security guards roaming the hallways and hearing about children soiling themselves because they're denied a hall pass to use the restroom, I am honestly considering homeschooling. I don't want to be one of those ridiculously concerned parents and I know that more than half these stories are probably not true. But I don't want my children to be forced to live in fear and be overly controlled by this system, while trying to just get through a day at school. And I am all for my kids being exposed to many different world views and opinions in order to form their own, but I fear public schools will force their beliefs on them and try to deny my children their rights. 

I could go on and on with this post while really going nowhere at all, so I'll leave it at this; Mike and I will do the best we can to provide our children with a good education and we will cross that bridge when we get there! 

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Friday, November 22, 2013

Day 15 - Where I'll Be in 5 Years

Hmmmm...not quite sure how to answer this one! Haha - because if someone had told me I'd be where I am now 5 years ago, I probably would have laughed at them! I've learned that life throws you constant curve balls and there is just no telling where you're going to end up. So it's good to keep an open mind! But I sure can tell you where I'd like and hope to be in 5 years!

I see myself married to Mike with two kids! Possibly three...we will play it by ear once Vince arrives. :) I'm not sure exactly where we will be living, but I have a feeling we won't be in New Mexico anymore. I see us in a house with a big back yard with plenty of room for the kids to run around in and maybe even a shed that houses Mike's latest car project. I picture myself being your typical housewife - trying to juggle everyone's schedules and the mountain of clothes piled high next to the laundry room that just doesn't seem to shrink...but I imagine being happy and enjoying being a mom. :) I see a minivan parked out front, which I'm actually excited about, because funny enough, at 22 years old, my dream car is actually a minivan. xD (You may laugh.) I am HOPING to be at least somewhat in shape and have my family on a healthy meal plan. It's really important to me and I'll honestly be disappointed in myself if I haven't reached that goal within 5 years. I also see "Elle-Belle's Kustom Kicks" finally a business and picture myself painting shoes when I don't have my hands full with the kiddos!  
That's really all I can think of - I don't want to picture things too far into the future, because I really like to keep an open mind. There is just no telling what the future will bring, but all I know is that I am excited to see what the next 5 years will be like! :)

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Thursday, November 21, 2013

Day 14 - 3 Healthy Habits

Honestly, I barely have any healthy habits. I don't eat particularly healthy and since I got pregnant, I haven't been working out. >.< I really hate it and it is at the top of my list of things I want to change about my lifestyle, especially once my son is born. But here are my three!

1. I only drink water 
And I drink a lot of it! I know I've brought this up before, but really that's all I ever drink. I will occasionally drink something else (pretty much just coffee), but I find I need a water to go along with it. When I drink coffee, I see it as a treat or a snack and not as a beverage if that makes sense. I've never been a soda or juice drinker at all, even when I was little. I'd almost be interested to look at the difference if I were to drink something else exclusively instead, but I don't think I'd make it a day! I need my water!

2. I quit smoking. 
This should come naturally to many people, since many chose to never smoke in the first place. But this was very hard for me to do. Once you're addicted to something like nicotine, it's very difficult to quit. I had quit on my 21st birthday for almost a year and I am ashamed to admit I started again in May when I lost my grandmother. But as soon as I found out I was pregnant, I quit again cold turkey and have not touched them since. I am very proud of myself, despite the fact that I didn't quit the first time. I never, ever want to start again, especially now that I am having a child who will be looking up to me!  

3. Stress Management
I am doing everything in my power to manage my stress. For me, this is essential to being healthy. Health is not just physical, but also mental and it's difficult to be healthy if you don't equally focus on both. After dealing with depression for years and struggling with anxiety, I need to keep my mind clear and eliminate people and things from my life that are causing me unnecessary grief. I've had to completely change my attitude and way of thinking in order to deal with my issues and live a more fulfilled and happy life. It is so easy to give into the anxiety or sadness and let it take over you and trust me - there are days I still give into it! It takes a lot of work to close your eyes, take a deep breath and think positive and refuse to let your problems become you. But it is beyond worth it and I've seen my life go in a positive direction since I've made stress management a top priority!

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Wednesday, November 20, 2013

25 Weeks Pregnant

I'll add my chalkboard picture on Friday once Mike can take it! :)

How far along? 25 Weeks - Vincent is the size of a rutabaga
Total weight gain/measurements: I've been gaining about a pound a week for the last few weeks! I have hit 150 now, so I'm just three pounds away from my pre-pregnancy weight. :)
Maternity clothes: Same as last week. 
Stretch marks? Not yet
Sleep: Sleep has been horrible this week. I've been having constant round ligament pain, so it makes it difficult to get comfortable and actually fall asleep.  
Best moment this week: Hearing Vince roundhouse kick the fetal monitor. xD 
Miss anything?: Mike!! He left Monday for training in Tulsa and will be back Friday. I hate it when we're apart!
Movement: Lots of movement this week! And some of the kicking has turned into sliding, now that he is getting bigger. It's so strange to feel him roll over - it makes me feel like I'm on a roller coaster!
Food cravings: Nothing this week.
Anything making you queasy or sick? I have not been feeling very good this week. Last night I was throwing up and was finally just able to down a piece of buttered toast. I really can't wait until March. I want to meet my son and be done with the morning sickness. I never would have thought I'd still be dealing with it this late in pregnancy! 
Gender: Boy :)
Labor signs: No - I think I still may be getting Braxton Hicks on and off though. 
Symptoms: Strong round ligament pain. On Friday, I woke up to a very sharp, stabbing pain in the lower right area of my abdomen. It was so incredibly painful. It went away a few hours later. The next day, it came back so strong, I was about ready to head to the ER. I then went to empty my bladder and it just went away! Had it again all day Sunday and into Monday. I called the midwifery on Monday morning, and since they only had one midwife on call that day and she was at the hospital, they sent me to urgent care. Urgent care sent me to the ER and the ER sent me to labor and delivery. (!!!) I really was just hoping they'd check to see if I had another UTI or something and send me home. I felt so embarrassed sitting up there in labor and delivery at 25 weeks with cramps. Turns out between Vince's strong movement and me probably sleeping wrong the night before the pain started, my ligament was strained. So it's nothing major. I was glad they sent me on my way after that. Good grief.
So my symptoms this week have been ligament pain, tailbone pain, braxton hicks and morning sickness. 
Belly button in or out? Halfway out when I'm standing haha
Happy or moody most of the time: I've been a bit moody this week since there has been a lot going on, but very happy about Mike's job and that Vincent is growing and doing well!  
Looking forward to: Mike coming home on Friday! :D I'd be looking forward to my next appointment a week from today, but honestly, I'm dreading it a bit, since I'll be doing my 1 hour glucose test and getting my Rh shot! 

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Day 13 - What's Inside My Fridge

My Fridge
Well, there you have it. My fridge. Nothing too terribly special. In it, you'll find:

- Milk
- Eggs
- Cheese (grated and sliced)
- Bacon
- Cottage Cheese
- Yogurt 
- Juice
- Fruit Punch
- Butter
- Spaghetti Sauces 
- Sour Cream 
- Grapes
- Salad
- Lettuce
- Tomato
- Breakfast Shakes
- Mike's Coke
- A bunch of random beer (whenever friends come over and bring beer, they leave whatever doesn't get drunk haha)
- Random Condiments

We usually go shopping for what we need for the week, so we don't keep a lot in the fridge at all times, since we try to eat everything fresh. And since Mike doesn't like leftovers, we have gotten pretty good at cooking just the right amount so everything gets eaten. So we've got a pretty boring fridge! Haha :D  
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Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Day 12 - My Favorite Childhood Book

As you may remember reading in my 20 things about me post, this was my favorite book when I was a little squirt. My parents read it to me so many times, that I had it memorized. I scared my babysitter by reciting it by memory while flipping through the pages when I was two. I don't have the book anymore and I honestly have no idea where it would be with all of our moving, but I plan to repurchase it so that I can read it to my son. :) 
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Monday, November 18, 2013

Day 11 - 10 Favorite Foods

I'm going to start this one off by saying - yes, I am aware that probably half the things on this list are everything but healthy, but hey. I'm just keeping it real. No judgement! xD 

1. Pizza
Yeah, I know I'm boring! But pizza, man....I love so many different kinds too! I really miss real, Italian pizzas, straight out of a stone oven. We had a couple of great Italian owned pizzerias in Germany, where you could even watch the pizzas baking from where you sat. But I also really like a good Chicago deep dish pizza. During my pregnancy, I've been LOVING Tombstone pepperoni pizzas! You'd think I'd get sick of them after a while, but I never do.

2. Käsespätzle
As you probably guessed, this is a southern German dish. Käse is cheese and Spätzle is a type of soft egg noodle. Cheese is melted or baked onto the noodles (usually Emmental cheese) and gravy, roasted onions and/or chives are often added on top. There are several different ways to make it. It is SO amazing. I've heard some people compare it to Mac and Cheese - I disagree. I guess the concept is similar, but Käsespätzle tastes 100000x more amazing! 
3. Loaded Baked Potato Soup
I think the first time I had it was at IHOP actually and I've been obsessed with it ever since! I've pinned so many recipes for it on Pinterest, but I haven't actually gotten around to making it yet. xD It's been a huge craving this pregnancy.

4. Mozzarella and Tomatoes
Plain, with balsamic dressing, on a name it. I love the combination. I miss those big soft blocks of mozzarella I used to be able to get at the store in Germany - for some reason I haven't been able to find it anywhere here in the US. Using that particular kind either diced with cherry tomatoes or sliced with slices of large tomato is my favorite!

I just love cheese. Even the smelly french kind. (Although not at the moment) Usually if a dish calls for it, I add 2x more than the recipe calls for, or I probably should. xD I'll just eat straight off of a block of cheese too. I feel the need to have cheese with and on nearly everything I eat!   

6. Green Bean Casserole (with lots of french fried onions)
I used to HATE green beans when I was little. Once my mom finally convinced me to try some of her green bean casserole, I've insisted on it being part of thanksgiving dinner. And now I like green beans plain too! :)

7. Chocolate
Need I say more? It's an addiction I'm not proud of!

8. Bananas
No matter how sick and lousy I feel, I can almost always eat a banana. They taste good and have been an absolute lifesaver during my pregnancy!  

9. Popcorn
Buttered, please. 

10. Chicken
I really like any dish that includes chicken. It doesn't really matter to me how it's prepared or what it's mixed with! 

 photo Leah_zpsc2dda01b.png

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Day 10 - Best Trip of Your Life

Hmm...this one is a bit difficult for me. Growing up, I was fortunate to get to visit some really neat places. Many people never get the chance to visit some of the countries I visited growing up. Although these trips were primarily to visit family, we still went sightseeing and did everything we could to embrace and appreciate where we were. Every other summer, we took trips to the US to either Illinois or New Mexico to visit family. We've also traveled to France and Italy to visit family members. 
The thing is, each trip came with it's own individual and awesome experience that I will cherish forever. So honestly, I really can't pick a "best trip" because they were all awesome for different reasons.
So I figured instead of sharing with you my dream vacation to Disney World (which I've still never been to) or my amazing week in the Bahamas, I'll share with you some pictures from some of the coolest places I've been to. 

Salzburg, Austria
In the lower right photo, you see the location where the Sound of Music was filmed
Venice, Italy
During this particular trip, we were visiting my mom's cousin and his wife. I can't remember exactly which city they lived in, but he was stationed in the military Venice. It was a great day trip!
Grand Canyon
Mesa Verde
Four Corners Monument
Can't help but laugh at how touristy we look - me in particular xD
Marseille, France
On the bottom left is us after going to the market with my lovely great aunt, who didn't speak a word of English! It made things very interesting! :D
Chicago, Illinois
Even though we were from Chicago before moving to Germany, this was one of the only times we actually went sightseeing in the city. This was when the "bean" was still under construction.

Tirol, Austria
I went to a sport camp in the summers of 2004 and 2006. Both times were amazing and the scenery is completely mind blowing and beautiful. These pictures are from 2006.
London, England
This was a week long trip I took with my class in May of 2010, in celebration of us finishing school. I'd love to go back someday!

Saturday, November 16, 2013

Day 9 - What's In My Bag/Wallet

I've always wanted to do this, so I was excited about today's challenge! This is what I generally carry in my bag and my wallet all the time. Once Vince is here and I switch to a diaper bag, I'm going to have to change things up a bit. I haven't quite decided yet whether I'm going to combine my things with the diaper bag or just get a clutch. 

1. Wallet
2. Organizer - This one is a Martha Stewart binder. I love it, but an A5 is too bulky for my liking. Eventually, I'd like to downsize to a personal-sized Filofax.
3. Favorite Pen
4. Keys
5. Clip-On Sunglasses - I got these for about 14 bucks at Walmart and have had them for 3 years. They clip onto my glasses perfectly!
6. eos and Baby Lips lip balm
7. Water bottle - I can rarely ever leave the house without water. I'm always thirsty, especially in the summer, since it gets very hot here!
8. Earbuds - these are Panasonic. They are the best earbuds I've ever had.
9. Hand cream - I have very dry hands and I've found that my Bath and Body Works "Twilight Woods" triple moisture body cream works the best.
10. Gum and Listerine Strips - pregnancy lifesaver #1
11. Tums - pregnancy lifesaver #2
12. Coin Purse  - I prefer to keep change in my coin purse, because the coins tend to make my wallet very bulky.
13. Deoderant  - pregnancy lifesaver #3
14. Pepper Spray  - My sister in law was roofied a few years back, which resulted in my father in law getting all the girls pepper spray. I've had it in my purse since.
15. Wet Ones wipes 
16. Empty plastic bag  - You're probably thinking: "Why on earth?!". I've kept an empty bag (or two) in my purse since my first trimester in case I get sick. I can't tell you how many times they've come in handy!
(17. Cell Phone, not pictured)

I try to keep things simple in my wallet. I go through it on a regular basis to take out any receipts, so that I don't have a bunch of clutter in it. I do the same thing with my purse. As a general rule, I don't keep cash in my wallet. I don't see it as necessary and it just ends up adding more bulk. I keep all of my important cards in the slots, along with Mike's senior picture. (Because I'm cheesy that way. ;D) 
I am a bit old school and still pay our bills with checks...yes, I know. >.< Which also explains why I keep stamps in my wallet. There is a pocket behind my main cards where I stash store cards (Walgreens, Staples, Petco etc.), along with a few business cards. Behind my checkbook are two pockets, where I keep my stamps and transaction register. I really like using the transaction register, just so I have my budget and balance on hand.