Wednesday, January 29, 2014

We. have. SNOW!

Yup! and even more ice. We rarely ever get snow here in South Alabama and most times when we do it is only a few flurries that never stick to the ground. But yesterday we had rain, snow and ice! which meant our state went into total freak out mode. People here just cannot drive when it comes to snow and ice. Granted, driving on ice is something we may only have to do a handful of times our entire life here in the South but we are just never prepared for it. We had people stuck on the interstate and sleeping in their cars, students stuck in schools because the buses couldn't drive them home and parents could not get to them and businesses that had to function as hotels because their employees could not leave because there was no way possible to make it to their house......sheesh! Not to mention all the wrecks up and down the highways. BUT, thankfully the Hubs and I made it home safely and we have been able to enjoy the snow and ice together with our boys. Here's what we've been up to since we've been snowed in.

The Hubs bought the boys some new treats. They did not last very long.



We cooked up some yummy grub. Venison stuffed Bell Peppers sprinkled with cheese and a side of brown rice.

After all the freezing rain, sleet and ice the snow finally arrived. We woke up to a winter wonderland. This is us outside at about 5am with the boys. They were loving it!





Brett went hunting, of course, and the boys and I kicked it inside where it was nice and warm. We all snuggled up in the recliner while I enjoyed a warm cup of coffee. We did venture back outside around lunch to play in the snow.

The old cabin on our property. So pretty.


Bump shot! I am 32 weeks today and feel HUGE!! And all the layers I have on just make me look even bigger, but I was warm!

The Hubs in front of our snow covered crib. This is the first snow in our new house.

He was ice skating here....I was praying he wouldn't fall.

Tiger kitty stopped by to say hello...and eat of course. I don't know where he goes or where he sleeps but he knows where to get fed.

Chief!





Going after a snow ball.

The boys in action.

My little Drakers is such a mess. I got such a laugh at watching him prance around on top of the snow. He would leap and jump and run like crazy.


Drake really enjoyed eating the snow for some reason.

This is my entry way after all the fun in the snow. Can you tell I'm married to a hunter?


I whipped up a few chocolate covered pretzels later on. This is the Hubs favorite so I thought I would be domestic and make him something. They were a pain in the arse, but tasty!

Now I'm off to finish a few thank you cards from my shower and to get supper ready and to just sit around and enjoy the snowy view outside my window before it goes away for who knows how long. It may be 3 years or 10 before we see snow like this again so I'm going to enjoy it while it lasts. Hope you are all warm and cozy wherever you are this winter.

31 weeks


How far along?  31 weeks 
Total weight gain/loss? gained about 30lbs- feel like 60 lol
 Maternity clothes? more and more maternity clothes lately. I've had to buy more pieces since the temps have dropped and my everything continues to grow.
Stretch marks? no, still praying
Sleep? PILLOWS! My awesome husband surprised me with a snoogle this week and I love him for it.
Best moment this week? My shower at work.
Miss anything? being able to touch my toes easily
Movement? all! the! time! He has found my bladder!
Food cravings?  nothing in particular
Anything making you queasy or sick? nope
Have you started to show yet? obviously
Gender? BOY!!!
Symptoms? Achy hip joints!! and Round ligament pain!! Seriously, I've been in so much pain from this lately. It hurts to stand and walk but know that this is just part of my body getting ready to welcome my little boy into this world. My feet also swell here and there. They were awful a few weekends ago.
Labor Signs?  no
Belly Button in or out? in-but I'm not sure how much longer it will stay this way.
Wedding rings on or off? on-hoping I can keep them on but if I start swelling I am going to invest in a cheap one until little man is actually here.
 Happy or Moody most of the time? Ugh, the moods swings and hormones have definitely been at play here recently. The Hubs is amazing for putting up with me at times. 
Looking forward to? finishing his nursery.








Wednesday, January 22, 2014

My Expecting Mommy Wish List

We have 9 weeks left before little man arrives and I am counting down. I'm getting into that everything is huge, I can't hardly move, it hurts to walk, why does it feel like there is a weight on my chest, can you help me put on my boots, good Lord when will this be over, I will never do this again, crying for no reason, yet so happy stage. And still I'm told, "just wait, it gets worse" by so many that I'm trying to mentally prepare for what lies ahead so I won't completely drive the Hubs and myself  mad. Anywho, amongst all the hormones and mood swings and happy moments (there are plenty of those too) I have been compiling my baby registry in preparing for my new adventure as Mommy -Scary! I know.

If you follow my blog you will recall I wrote a few days ago about the most genius baby registry out there, Baby List, (click the name to visit the site, it's awesome!) and have since been adding things like wildfire. During this time of baby registry creating euphoria my sister-in-law, after reviewing the ever growing list herself, asked me what item I wanted the most.......insert record screech here... Are you kidding me!?! How do I even answer that? I just sort of sat there dumbfounded for a minute. It's bad enough to process easy information/questions due to my already impaired pregnancy brain (which is real people, it's real) so how could she ask such an impossible question to a 7 month pregnant lady?  Well, this got me to thinking- what would my essential baby items be if I had to list 10, not 1, but 10 items? So I thought I would create my list now and create a second list when Sawyer is 3 months old and compare the two. I'm wondering just how much I will need/use my Expecting Momma Wish List to my 3 Month Old Momma List. Here goes.




 There you have my top 10. What's on your list? Anything you think is a waste or absolutely need yourself? Let's hear it.



Monday, January 20, 2014

Healthy French Toast Breakfast



I've been trying to clean up my diet in the New Year. I admit I've let myself indulge way too much during my pregnancy and know I am going to have to really focus on my diet once little man gets here in order to loose the weight I've put on these past six months. 
I love breakfast. It is my favorite meal of the day so I really enjoy cooking a nice breakfast on the weekends because my mornings are so hectic during the week. Depending on the day I'm out the door by 5:45am or 6:45am. You're thinking that's stupid early? Yeah. I know. I decided to cook a favorite meal of mine- french toast.




Here's what you need:

3 slices whole wheat bread (Ezekiel bread is even better for you)
3 eggs (use egg whites to make it even healthier)
handful of frozen blueberries
handful of frozen strawberries
sprinkle of sugar (you can use splenda or stevia as well)
Medium size skillet
Small size skillet

Place berries in bowl of water so they can thaw a bit. Preheat both your skillets. I put mine on high but you can judge this for yourself. Crack eggs and beat them with fork in small shallow container. I used a small square ziploc container. Place one slice of bread flat down into container and let a bit of the egg soak up into the bread, flip and do the same on the other side. Cut your heat down on your skillets and  spray lightly with PAM or something similar to keep it from sticking. Place the bread into the skillet. Flip the bread when the egg is cooked. Repeat this for the other 2 slices. While you are cooking your bread drain the water off the berries and add them to the small skillet. Keep this stirred as this will create your syrup. Once your berries are heated add a sprinkle of sweetener/sugar and stir. (you can skip the sugar all together if you wish) 
Pour your syrup (berry mixture) over each slice of bread right out of the skillet while your bread is still warm. Sit down and enjoy your guilt free breakfast.







I had a little egg left over so I just fried it up in the skillet once my bread was done. No use in wasting perfectly good protein, right?


And there you have it. A yummy healthy version of one of my breakfast favorites.
Enjoy!!




Thursday, January 9, 2014

The Ultimate Baby Registry

I have found something that I must share. It is the Mecca of Baby Registries. I wish I had thought of this myself because it is one genius idea. Baby List has created a one stop registry for all of us expecting mommas out there. You just log in, create your profile and add the BabyList link to your bookmarks. You can then add items from any on-line store to your registry. If the item can be purchased from different stores it even offers a feature where the purchaser can choose which store they would like to buy the item from. How cool and convenient is that? 
 
Oh and did I mention they are having a hell of a giveaway right now? Its called- The Best Baby Registry Evah!! and for good reason. They are giving away $5,000.00 worth of baby items and hey, we aren't talking crap items here either. They have some top of the line stuff on this list. So, what they heck are you waiting for? Go on over and enter the giveaway and get your registry started right now. Even if you are not preggers you can still register for this giveaway so get to clicking and let me know what you think about the Ultimate Baby Registry.


Monday, January 6, 2014

Here's to 2014..... non-resolutions and all.

I admit I'm usually one of those who make resolutions in the New Year and more than often do not keep them. However, it seemed that 2014 was here before I even knew it and did not have time to even think about resolving anything in the new year. To be honest I still feel like it is 2013. I think this is in large part due to the fact that we rang in the New Year in the middle of the week or maybe I was just so preoccupied at everything I have to accomplish before Sawyer gets here. The hubs and I have been steadily working on the nursery but with the Holidays and hunting season falling right here before his arrival it's been crazy. I still have a hard time grasping the fact that we are both about to become parents. However, I guess no amount of preparation can really prepare you for becoming a mommy or daddy for the first time....or so I've been told. Anyway, this got me to thinking. What do I want to accomplish not just in 2014 but throughout parenthood and life? Here's what I came up with.

things to strive toward in the new year and beyond
I know these are not very specific goals but they are each something I would like to work toward. I believe that these are the most important aspects in my life and each overlap and bleed into other areas as well. I will keep y'all updated on the progressions/digressions along the way.

So here's to not just making resolutions for 2014 but for many years to come. What about you? Do you have anything you would like to strive for beyond just the new year? Please feel free to share.

Sunday, January 5, 2014

Smoky Mountain Christmas Revisited

Last year after we said good-byes to Jolly Old Saint Nicholas the Hubs and I loaded the truck and headed north to visit gorgeous Gatlinburg, TN. We were celebrating our 5 year anniversary (*sidenote-I CANNOT believe we have been married for 6 years now and are working on our 7th. not to mention this makes me realize that we are in fact getting older. Shriek! guess time does fly when you are having fun)  and it was also our first trip to the Mountains together as we usually head south to the Emerald Coast. This year instead, we were both working...insert sad face here. However, my BFF and her Hubs just made the trip for themselves and after looking at all her photos on facebook and instagram and laughing at all her random snapchats I thought I would revisit our trip to Tennessee since we had such a good time. (*tip- marry someone who makes you laugh and that you can call your friend. the hubs and I have so much fun together, fusses and all.)

We stayed at the Doubletree Hotel since it was nestled into the picturesque mountain side (and we had a crap pile of Hilton points- hello money saver) and I have to say climbing the hills up to it each time made me a little nervous, especially after it snowed. You know us south Alabama girls just aren't use to snow and icy roads and all... But the hotel was incredibly inviting and cozy with roaring fires inside the lobby and the breakfasts there were nothing to complain about either- this girl can put away some food. Our bellies were full each day we headed out on our adventures.


The Hubs has amazing picture taking abilities...



View from our room.

The morning after we arrived we woke up to snow. Everything had been beautifully dusted with a frosty white coat of snow. The mountains in the background were breathtaking but unfortunately I couldn't get a picture on my iPhone that would do it justice


While we were climbing up the mountain to Cade's Cove we jumped out to snap a few photos of the skyline. Again you can't really see the snow but the view was incredible.


 

This was a little village inside Cade's Cove and while I have a million awful iphone pics of the place I will not bore you with them but simply tell you this is definitely a place you should visit. The landscape is incredible and the history is remarkable, even if you aren't in to that kind of stuff, go check it out. I was also able to get a video of a monster buck that lives in Cade's Cove. I'm talking he walked within 5 feet in front of me. It was crazy how unfazed he was by all the people standing around snapping photos and videos. I'm not sure we were suppose to be out of our vehicles that close but it was pretty cool none the less. This deer was huge and beautiful and the fact that I was that close was intense. We were limited at how far up the mountain we could go since it was winter and it had just snowed. Several of the roads were closed but we still enjoyed our time in the park and saw plenty. Although, I would recommend bringing food or snacks, especially if you get hungry like I do. I was famished by the time we left.




 We did the touristy thing and had our old time photo made. These shops are every where in TN so we just picked one and went on in. We had very specific ideas of what we wanted and the photographer/owner got a crack out of us. For instance I didn't want cards or money stuffed in my garter, I wanted another gun. And the Hubs had to have a full cowboy ensemble, jeans just wouldn't do-chaps were mandatory. While I was a bit grossed out by putting on a costume that had been worn a hundred times I sucked it up and went with it. We had fun goofing off for the camera and thought the photos turned out nicely.
 
You can't really tell in the photo but Brett is offering me money....gasp!

I sort of felt like Bonnie and Clyde taking this photo. lol


I also purchased some homemade wine while we were there. This was a special white Holiday wine they make and man was it fine! I regret that I only bought one bottle as compared to someone else I know, cough cough yes I'm talking about you AWD, cough cough. It now serves as decor in the dining room and is often used as a vase. Sorry I don't remember the name of the place but it was in downtown Gatlinburg. They have wine & moonshine tasting available as well.

      



We hiked up to a waterfall we discovered while driving through the mountain side. There were so many trails to choose from so we opted for the shorter one. (3 miles) You definitely got your cardio in while making this climb. I came out of my jacket, beanie, scarf, and gloves before I made it to the top. I absolutely plan to bring my hiking shoes and workout clothes next time and tackle one of the longer trails.
(there was a 12 miler I kept eyeing)





Some shots I took of our view on the hike down from the waterfall.

It was a gorgeous morning.


If you don't know much about Gatlinburg or Pigeon Forge, Tennessee then you should at least know about their live dinner shows. They have several! The most popular being the Dixie Stampede. We knew we couldn't come to Gatlinburg and not go to at least one show so we opted for the Hatfield & McCoy's. It was a Christmas themed show since it was still December and it was quite hilarious and entertaining. Again, the food was not too shabby either. (do we see a trend here?) Now, if you are expecting a fine dinning experience you are in the wrong place my friend, take it somewhere else. However, keeping with the Hatfield & McCoy experience you will receive a bon-a-fide southern meal. It was tasty. Below is the photo they took of everyone entering the theater. You were either seated on the Hatfield or McCoy side for the show. Very fun indeed.




We also had the pleasure of running into several friends while we were on our trip. We even ran into another couple that are good friends of ours and learned they were expecting their first child. How exciting!! We all enjoyed an amazing lunch at The Old Mill Restaurant and caught up with one another. I highly recommend this place and absolutely try the fritters. I'm salivating just thinking about them now. Be aware that you will have to wait. We went for lunch and our wait time was about an hour, but worth it!

Before we knew it we were packing up and heading back home, but not without lots of fun memories and great laughs. We did decide next time we would opt for a cabin rather than a hotel but had no idea that next time would include three of us and not just two. We cannot wait to take little Sawyer to the mountains and watch him experience everything for himself.

Here's to whatever the future may bring. Hope y'all had a Blessed & Happy New Year!!

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