Wednesday, March 31, 2010

What's to Eat? Wednesday: Southern-Style Potato Salad

I feel like I am always looking for a good potato salad. Most recipes I find tend to be too dry. This one though is absolutely saucy, especially when you leave out half the potatoes it says to add! For some reason this week I have been craving mayonnaise based things and I know that probably makes most of you all want to gag, but it's true. My pregnant recommendation is to only put in 2 pounds of potatoes, but if that grosses you out...go ahead and add the rest. Really if you mix everything else together first then you can test it as you go.

Southern-Style Potato Salad (

4 pounds potatoes (about 4 large)
3 hard-cooked eggs, grated
1 cup mayonnaise
1/2 cup sour cream
1/4 cup celery, finely chopped
2 tablespoons onion, finely chopped
2 tablespoons sweet pickle relish
1 tablespoon mustard
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
1/2 pound bacon, cooked and crumbled

Cook potatoes in boiling water to cover 40 minutes or until tender; drain and cool. Peel potatoes and cut into 1-inch cubes.

Stir together potatoes and eggs.

Stir together mayonnaise and next 7 ingredients; gently stir into potato mixture. Cover and chill. Sprinkle with bacon just before serving.

I stirred the eggs and rest of the ingredients for the dressing together first then added the potatoes to taste.

Go ahead, try it! It's the perfect recipe for all of this nice grilling weather we are currently having!

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Book Review: The Memory Keepers Daughter

I loved this book. It took me forever to read, but really that was more due to personal stuff (aka freaking out about pregnancy) than the book itself. I'm sure most of you have heard about The Memory Keepers Daughter by Kim Edwards. It is a must read.

The story revolves around a husband who delivered his wife's twins in the middle of a snowy night. One was a perfect little boy, the other was a little girl who had downs syndrome. In the 1960's they didn't know much about Downs and didn't expect them to live a very long life. He decides to tell his wife that the second baby died during birth and has his assistant whisk the little girl away to a special home.

I won't give away anymore but it deals with how a lie can fester and how not talking about things can completely ruin a relationship. You watch as David and Norah's relationship strains over the "death" of the daughter over the years as well as what actually happens with the daughter and her brother living in separate worlds.

I think the thing that resounded with me the most was that there isn't always time to "fix" things. That sometimes it is in fact too late and that sometimes things we don't want to face need to be dealt with and as promptly as possible. Definitely check it out!

Monday, March 29, 2010

Top 3 Stories of the Weekend

We had a pretty nice and relaxing weekend. We got the garage cleaned up and had decent enough weather to grill out. I even made an attempt to start cooking again by trying out some new recipes which you will be seeing on the next few upcoming Wednesdays. I'll spare you most of the boring details and just share our top 3 stories of the weekend...

Apparently We Are the Neighborhood Property Destroyers:
I believe I forgot to mention that we met our first neighbor the day we moved in. He came over to politely inform us that our moving truck (which happened to be a ridiculously over sized semi) hit his brick mailbox knocking it off it's base. I was dealing with the moving company the whole next week trying to get everything settled and once they came out they decided they would deny the claim because they couldn't figure out how the driver could have possibly hit it (which would have been a challenge seeing as in it was on a curve, I have to admit). So awesome....we have a neighbor 1.

This weekend we had a major wind storm and while reading in bed I heard a major noise. I stepped outside to find that our umbrella (which was down by the way) had flown over the fence. I had a terrifying thought that it had somehow made it's way over another fence or even worse made it through another window. Thankfully I found it in my neighbors unfenced yard right on their porch. No damage, thank God! I didn't need to piss off neighbor number 2 with more property damage.

Our Dog is a Nut:
Lola constantly entertains me but yesterday she was over the top. We were watching some animal show on TV and she tried to literally chase a cheetah. She then proceeded to prop her front feet on the TV console and pressed her nose almost to the screen to watch the show. She looked under the TV and behind it to try to find the animals and when that didn't work she proceeded to bark like crazy.

A Nice View:
While eating Sunday dinner at my Aunts house amidst her array of fine china, silver, and crystal glasses. We got a nice view of the neighbor kid sneaking to her backyard to take a leak. As he finished shaking it off my family all made our way to the back porch to give him a round of applause. Crazily enough he seemed awful proud of himself. He looked about 16 so that probably explains the "I Don't Give A Crap" attitude.

Friday, March 26, 2010

Weeks 11 & 12 in Review

03.11.10 - 03.24.10

Whoop, whoop......finally no more operation undercover pregnancy! Now we are all up to date! Yay. I'm sure you are all about to gouge your eyes out after reading about pregnancy for the last 12 posts. It will slow down, I promise, but I have to document. I have to!

These past two weeks were fantastic because we finallly got to share our news! We suprised our parents...or rather shocked giving them "thank you" gifts for helping us move. They were bibs of course. My dad...still in shock to this day....completely missed the meaning of the bib and was utterly confused. Michaels mom cried and wouldn't stop hugging me saying it was the best gift ever. Dad asked for a stong drink and said he wasn't ready. He'll come around. He has a few months to get used to the idea. My sister and sister-in-law were both equally excited for us.

By the end of week 11 I've been feeling back to normal more so than ever. Even red meat is starting to sound ok again. In fact, I've been hungry ALL THE TIME!!! I have been trying to restrain myself slightly because to be honest, I haven't been to the grocery store yet and all my options here are not so healthy. If I'm going to be eating a lot, I'm going to have to start making better choices than normal.

I've been thinking a lot about how much I want to be a stay at home mom. I really hope that we can financially swing it. I really can't be sure though until after we've lived here for a few months and get a better idea of what our bills are going to be like with the new house and lifestyle. One of my best friends from high school lives just maybe 5-10 minutes away from us now and has decided that this will be her last year of work. How perfect would that be for us both to be able to stay at home and help each other out? Oh, I hope it works. Sacrifices will have to be made of course, but I truly think it would be worth it.

I can just imagine how wonderful it would be to have a stay-at-home mom friend to call during the day to get out or maybe swap off kids when we really need to get something done by ourselves. It just seems like we could always be helping each other out since neither of our parents live within less than 30 minutes of us. In fact, she's already helped me out by bringing over all her maternity clothes this week. Will I seriously get that huge???? (Disclaimer: I mean that in no offense to her...obviously the 3rd trimester just does that to you.) It's just so hard to imagine.

Ok, so here are the belly pics, weeks 10, 11 and 12. I just can't tell anymore if anything is happening. Can I have a sonogram soon please. I need proof. Hmm, maybe I'm still in shock like my dad!

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

A Non Pregnancy Post for A Change

I have a total of 5 boxes left in my house. That's it! And the best part....I've already gone through them and know that most of those are going up in the attic. What a sigh of relief to be free of all that clutter!

My friend, Heather, came over yesterday to help me reorganize the kitchen yesterday and now I feel like I might be able to actually cook again soon! I had been in a hurry to get everything looking as normal as possible since my sister and her boyfriend had come to stay with us last weekend and shamefully I must tell you, I used the shove method on most of the rooms. But now, I can peacefully go back through and get organized.

Now I'm just trying to catch up on all my regular day to day stuff. You know that cleaning and laundry (which I had 2 laundry baskets and 3 trashbags full) and paying bills (yes, already just 2 weeks in) and filing. Oh, and I might need to go to the grocery store too. We have been Stouffers connoisseurs here of late.

I'm looking forward to getting things in order so that next week everything can be back to normal (blog posts included!).

Monday, March 22, 2010

Operation: Undercover Pregnancy - Weeks 9 & 10

Things have been crazy around here as you can see I didn't even get around to writing a 9 week post and I've barely remembered to do 10 weeks. We are moving this week which is soooooooo exciting and is also very preoccupying.

I have to say I just keep getting more and more forgetful. I will think of something I need to do and then bam...forgotten. It drives me nuts.

As far as how I have been feeling......I've been feeling great. Absolutely great. I did do a little too much with the cleaning process of the new house. I woke up yesterday morning barely able to move. I have to remember to take it a little easier these days.

The biggest and best thing that has happened thus far in this pregnancy is the fact that we got to hear the heartbeat. There is seriously a baby inside of me. I can now stop wondering if it's really true or not. What a relief! It was hard to hear, but it was there beating at 153.

We have told most of our close friends at this point and will be telling our parents this weekend which will be such a relief as well. I'm so ready to let the cat out of the bag!

Here are the pictures from week 9 and I'll post week 10 as soon as I find my camera cord.

It's officially time to start buying some more flowy shirts!

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Operation: Undercover Pregnancy - Week 8 in Review

02.18.10 - 02.24.10

This week I've been feeling even better than last week and it is seriously scaring me. What if something is wrong? What if something happened? I'm trying not to dwell on it, but at the same time I'm not letting myself get overly excited either. In one week I will be back in the doctors office and hopefully this time we will hear a heartbeat and everything will be as it should be and I can breath a huge sigh of relief.

The big news this week is that we closed on our condo and are one step closer to having the home to raise our kids in. I can't get over how grown up that sounds. This is really happening, isn't it?

We shared the pregnancy news with a whopping three people this week. We couldn't hold out any longer. Our best friends Heather and Daniel who have a 5 month old were ecstatic and my sister Chrissy was excited and shocked for us as well. It gets a little more exciting with each person we share the news with and there's definitely more of that to come.

The first baby item was purchased yesterday. Bibs! We decided that it would be best to tell our parents all at once and the least awkward way to do it would be via gifts. We will be spilling the beans finally when we move into our home in two weeks. The gifts will be disguised as "thank you" gifts for helping us move. more week until we finally get the confirmation I've been so desperately needing!

Friday, March 19, 2010

Operation: Undercover Pregnancy - Week 7 in Review

02.11.10 - 02.17.10

There isn't too much to report this week. To be honest I'm feeling a whole heck of a lot better not that I even felt that terrible before. The nausea has subsided quite a bit...still no actual vomiting involved. My pregnancy symptoms are almost unnoticeable. It's even scared me into thinking about the possibility of problems. I can't wait till our appointment on March 4th. I really think that once we hear the heartbeat and know that everything is alright we will be ready to spill the beans.

I've got my appetite back somewhat. I'm actually starving all the time now until dinner then I feel not so great about eating. When I do want to eat dinner...I only want carbs...baked potato, fries, really anything that involves a potato and maybe a salad. Meat is still kind of yucky to me, but things are looking up. I think it's about time for me to come up with a healthy eating plan so I can make sure to keep my weight on track for the rest of this pregnancy.

I wish I had been in better shape before now because obviously at this point I'm starting to freak out about what I'm going to look like in the months to come. Hopefully when the weather warms up I'll feel a little more inclined to get out and walk and do some more exercising. The winter blues really have me right now.

Now for the photo....I think I'm getting a little bigger. No? Maybe it's just all those potatoes.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Operation: Undercover Pregnancy - Week 6 in Review

02.04.10 - 02.10.10

This week I had my first prenatal appointment. I was very nervous because it was my first time having a man as my OB. My friend recommended him and I figured I might as well get over it because surely through some point during this pregnancy/delivery I will have a male doctor down there. In fact, it turned out to be no big deal at all. I really liked him. He likes salami and banana peppers...I like salami and banana peppers. Unfortunately for me he can still have it (salami) and I can't at this point.

Nothing fun happened at this appointment. I had my blood drawn, my urine tested, and my pap smeared. I realized I needed to come with pen and paper and a list of questions from now on. I was totally unprepared. The next appointment is March 4th where we will get to hear the heartbeat for the first time.

I'm starting to wonder about how we are going to tell everyone. Being the center of attention is not my idea of fun so to tell you the truth it makes me nervous. I'm guessing by March 4th (which should be 10 weeks) we will be bursting at the seams to tell. Plus, you know, I'm really dying to let the little secret out on my blog because I'm seriously running out of writing material having to edit this out for the time being.

As far as pregnancy symptoms go, I guess the major one is that it's been really hard to eat this week. No vomiting, thank God! But I definitely feel nauseated all the time. I've figured out it's best to eat a little bit every few hours and drink lots and lots of water!

I've caught up on some "What to Expect When Expecting" reading this week and actually feel calmer about the whole thing. Apparently I wasn't as out of the loop as I thought and most of the stuff I read just put my mind at ease.

We made it through the superbowl party, but not without the lack of alcoholic beverage in my hand going unnoticed. I'm pretty sure my Uncle and Aunt now know my little secret. Dad should know too by this point if he isn't in too much of denial.

Towards the end of this week, I've actually not been as tired as I was. Sometimes I do require naps during the day and I may be a little bit more lazy than usual, but I don't feel like I've pulled an all nighter every day so that's good.

This week we also pegged down the new house. Another thing to check off the list! The best part is that everyone is wanting to move asap so we should be in there in about 3 weeks possibly.

My concerns now are mostly on the finances since this house payment will obviously be larger than our condo as well as the down payment is using up a lot of our savings. We will also be needing new furniture and I'm sure there will be lots of things we have to buy for the new baby as well. But, I'm trying not to consume myself with worry at this point.

I'm starting to worry about my lack of exercising as well as just exactly what I should be eating. I think I might get some yoga dvds once we move into the new house and start walking some more. As far as nutrients go, I'm probably lacking a little bit in the protein area. Meat disgusts me right now, especially red meat. I mostly just want to eat cold things such as fruit or jello, vegetable side dishes, or crackers.

Other than that everything is going well. Now if only I could get my attention span and memory back. I swear I feel more and more out of it everyday. One minute I have a thought...the next nothing. Hello, is anyone home???? Oh, the joys of pregnancy.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Operation: Undercover Pregnancy - Week 5 in Review

01.28.10 - 02.03.10

This week has been filled with questions, doubts, and excitement. I actually bought my first pregnancy test EVER and I have to admit for some strange reason it made me feel nervous. I had to remind myself that I was a married woman of an appropriate age and that there should be no reason I should feel ashamed to buying these things.

I had started at Krogers where I found they kept the tests locked up in a cabinet and I would actually have to ask someone for help. I also noticed they were quite pricey! I decided to go to the dollar store instead and bought a couple of them just to make sure they were accurate.

On the very snowy day of January 30th we finally were able to have a moment alone and took two pregnancy tests that turned out to be positive!

I have to admit that I was more nervous than excited. I went ahead and scheduled my first prenatal appointment where I got to tell the first person besides my husband that I was pregnant. It came out so odd sounding and forced. It definitely hasn't sunk it.

We have decided to wait to tell people until we are past the first trimester (just in case the worst happens). It is going to be so hard though and I really think I could use the support of some people who have been through it before. I guess we will just wait and see how it goes.

I started to realize there is SOOOOOOO much that I don't know about this whole process. I did order a few books (What's to Expect when Your Expecting, Dr. Spock, and Babywise). Hopefully they will give me the answers I'm needing. This week I've found out how many potiential mistakes I've already made. I also wasn't taking prenatal vitamins until this week. I really should have been taking them since November. Agh! Hopefully I haven't already screwed things up beyond repair. These books can't come fast enough!

We are starting to wonder how we are going to avoid letting people know. We have a Superbowl party to attend and I'm pretty sure it won't go totally unnoticed that I'm not drinking. My sister and her boyfriend are coming up and with my luck she will just outright ask me in front of my dad. Eeeks this is going to be difficult. Especially if I start having morning might notice. Living with parents and hiding this is not going to be easy.

Speaking of which, the house search has been kicked into overdrive as well as money worries. I know I should just relax and have faith that everything is going to work out as it should, but I'm definitely freaking out a bit. I'm not good with the unknown!

As far as body changes this week, it's been mild. The ladies were hurting the first part of the week, but that's subsided. My back on the other hand has been killing me. I'm sure that sounds odd, but in fact, I have a so called "tilted" uterus. Another thing I have many questions about...will it turn around on it's own?, could it make me have a c-section?....something to save for this Friday's OB appointment. I also went to the dermatologist for my increasing acne. I had scheduled the appointment before I found out I was preggo and really there was nothing they could do. All they did was set me up with a $70 tiny bottle of organic spot treatment. Yippee. I felt very guilty for actually getting it, but my face is like a 15 year olds at this point and I can't take that for another 8 months!

That about sums it up for week 5. And here for the first time ever....a belly pic. There's really no change and I'm pretty sure the bump that you can see is from the boatload of guacamole I ate before taking this picture!

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Thank You & Operation: Undercover Pregnancy - Week 4 in Review

Thank you all so much for all the well wishes yesterday. Michael and I are incredibly excited about having a baby and the new house! Just to let you all know, we are tentatively due October 2. We've gotten a due date of September 30 as well. I'm guessing we won't know for sure until we have an ultrasound.

As you can see, I just couldn't blog that last month due to having a little secret I couldn't share. Now that it's out we can go back to normal. Well almost. Since I'm buried under boxes this week, I will be doing some prescheduled posts this week. I blogged each week while I was gone to record what was going on during those first early weeks of pregnancy and I'll be posting those this week while we get our house all set up.

01.21.10 - 01.27.10

This week is full of anticipation. The planner that I am thoughtfully planned out which day was best to procreate using the charting method in the Taking Charge of Your Fertility book. Unfortunately we have to wait till next week for the most accurate results, but I already know. I've already had hints of pregnancy - a heightened sense of smell, a lot of bathroom trips due to all the water I've been craving, and an incredibly hard time getting up in the morning. Lucky for me I'm normally pretty regular so really - I'm pregnant, I know it. I'd be shocked if I wasn't. Next week we will find out for sure and hopefully have a moment of privacy at one of our parents houses so we can properly celebrate.

I'm supposing you might want to know a little bit about how all this occurred (besides the obvious). We had actually decided to go off birth control in November to just let things happen. In fact, we had actually hoped that we would get pregnant in San Francisco so we would have a cool conception story. However, we didn't, which is probably a good thing considering there were lots of good times to be had over the holidays which involved some not so healthy habits for a pregnant lady. Sadly for my future child there is (potentially) no cool conception story. I was (potentially) impregnated at my dad's house which is about as cool of a story as getting knocked up in the back of a car. Oh well.

It's a very exciting, but also nerve-wrecking time. Right now our lives are a little bit of a jumble. We are still currently searching for the perfect home to start our family and I'm still trying to decide if we can afford to have me be a stay at home mom. I'm really hoping that all pans out, but sometimes things have to be done out of necessity.

That's all for now! Hopefully next week we will officially have our answer so we can officially say (to each other) that we have a baby on the way!

Monday, March 15, 2010

The Top 10 Things That Happened While I Was Gone

10. I watched more Olympics than I ever have before.

9. Movers came and packed up our first place and I didn't have to even lift a finger!

8.There was a lot of unnecessary drama with our buyer that I'm not even going to get into because the most important thing is that it's over.

7.We officially said goodbye to Knoxville.

6. I watched in disgust as Jake stupidly picked Vienna.

5. March is here and has given me a taste of spring.

4. I took a break from cooking to get re inspired.

3. We moved out of my dads and...

2. Moved into our new home in Murfreesboro.

and the number one thing that happened....

1. We found out we are pregnant!!!

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