I love making Jesse’s lunch. A little wasted bread in the name of Love? I think so.

It says "I Love You". Apparently, Jesse could not read it. He came home and said, "One half of my sandwich was kinda funky...and it was missing the jelly."

Adobe Living in New Mexico

This is not along the line of baby stuff, but I just had to post it. How much do you want this house right now? Or does the idea of living “off the grid” not appeal to you at all? I think there’s a part of me that will always want a house like this, even if it never happens.

It’s True…

…we’re having a baby!

Look at the lower left of the black void. I KNOW it's tiny and fuzzy...this is at 7 weeks, so baby PineCone is only as big as a sesame seed. And I can't configure the HP scanner with my Mac, so I had to take this with my camera phone. DEAL.

It wasn’t until Valentine’s Day that we realized it, and promptly freaked out. I called my Dad first, a complete sobbing mess. Poor Dad, sorry to freak you out.

But this news has slowly become an everyday part of life, especially when the morning sickness hit at week 5. I’m not going to lie– it was really bad. Like, “Oh God, take me now” bad. I hate being nauseous, and I have a deep-seated fear of throwing up, ever since I got a severe case of Campylobactor from accidentally eating uncooked chicken on a Torrey Europe trip. 1 month of vomiting and 30 lbs. lost later (along with near-paralysis), I am terrified of throwing up. And of chicken.

So guess which food I have a severe aversion to? Yup. Please don’t mention it around me. I can only eat it if it’s shredded and hidden in refried beans. And meat, in general, just does NOT sound good. Or look good. Or taste good. Which is a blessing, because Jesse has been fasting from all meat and dairy these last 6 weeks, and it would have been just too cruel.

8 weeks. It's not too noticeable yet, but I feel really fat...especially when I can't button my pants...

Around week 8, however, around 75% of the nausea went away. I am now able to eat pretty normally, with the occasional out-of-nowhere wave of nausea that only lasts for a few hours. Part of this is I learned to tell myself to ignore the sick feelings, which is easy to do when you know the extent to which they’ll go. Another helpful trick I learned was how to completely avoid anything that makes me feel sick. Mint tea is my best friend, especially since I pretty much quit drinking coffee and Diet Coke.

Weird cravings? That seems to be everyone’s favorite question. Get ready, it’s really gross. Cold peas, straight from the can (told you). Mozzarella cheese on plain Sourdough bread. Orange juice (I’ve been chugging this down Polyphemus-style). Sadly, Mac and Cheese has all but dropped to the way-side.

There have been other side-effects of pregnancy, other than anything food-related. Side effect #1: I have severe allergies that like to eat up my entire head and give me sinus infections and migraines. Unfortunately, my magic cure-all nose spray is a STERIOD– not so good for baby. And Claritin and Zyrtec don’t do a THING. 2 sinus infections later, I’ve finally found what I think to be a solution: The Neti Pot. It’s not very comfortable, but I think it’s doing the trick.

The 2nd effect is the Bloodhound sense of of smell I’ve developed. I can smell a wet rag in the next room. Being in class with lots of grad students is sometimes intolerable. I actually feel like I can smell EVERY SINGLE PERSON’s BODY ODOR.  Side effect #1 was, in some ways, a God-send, because it made me so congested I couldn’t smell for a week or two. So if you’re around me, please, remember to wear deodorant of the non-scented variety. Actually, you might not want to be around me at all…just keep reading for reasons….

3rd Side effect: I am SO EMOTIONAL. I am bawling halfway through ANY country song I hear on the radio. Doesn’t matter how cheesy. Carrie Underwood is the worst. The only way I can make it through one of her songs is to think of every car I’ve seen hitting every cat I know. You’d think that this, too, would make me sad, but it doesn’t. Just makes me feel gross, which works when combatting the water-works. And don’t even get me STARTED with movies. Beauty and the Beast is now off limits. I’ve seen that movie 100+ times, but I still fell apart in front of the kids I was babysitting, especially when the Beast says,”You–you came BACK!”. Oh, and Bambi…why do I hurt myself by watching these movies???

#4: Mood swings? None. Haha, just kidding. Jesse has been an absolute saint for putting up with me. I actually started THROWING things in an argument last week. First of all, we argued, which is pretty rare when we’re not moving to a different apartment or state. Secondly, I was throwing things (we have a couple dented cans of food to prove it) which hasn’t come even close to happening since before we became Orthodox. Ugh. I had a lot of material for Confession yesterday. Fr. Joe has this funny way of saying, “Well, is that the first time you’ve said/done (x)?” I say no. He grimaces. It’s like a game we play. I think we should safely assume that if I remember it long enough to confess it, it’s an on-going problem.

So there you have it– we are having a baby, due in October!! I am now at 10 weeks, and we’ve already had one ultrasound, just to see the heartbeat and make sure it was growing in the proper place. My first appointment with my midwife is this coming Thursday. I will keep you posted!

I’m a Writer!

Okay, you already knew this. Obviously. I write on this blog at least 2-3x/week, on average, even if it’s silly stuff. I find that once I haven’t blogged for a few weeks, writer’s block is unavoidable– I don’t feel like I can phrase anything!

Anyways, I already love to write. But I am now going to get PAID!!

My old music company (I won’t give the name, we didn’t often have a good relationship, plus I probably already mentioned it on this blog about 2 years ago) that I used to teach piano lessons through just announced that they are adding an “articles” section to their website. The company has expanded tremendously since I worked there (I was the only “employee”, now there are a dozen or so) and they have parents requesting informative articles on piano lessons and things that they as parents can do to help their children. My (old) boss asked all existing and former teachers to try their hand at writing an article about different aspects of piano teaching. She said that if they like the first article and think it interesting and informative, they would ask the teacher to write 2-3 articles per month on a contractual basis.

I sat down, wrote an article about Home Music Lessons in about 30 minutes, proofread it, and sent it off a week before the deadline. A few hours later, she got back to me and said that they loved the article and want me to write 2 articles a month for them. The pay is only $40/article, but the article only has to be a min. of 500 words. It was seriously the easiest money I’ve ever made. I love writing. Always have. And I have 7 years of piano teaching to draw upon.

So, there you go!! I will post a link to the website as soon as my first article is posted. Hooray!

Discount Grocery Store

You will not believe what Jesse just found– a discount grocery food store that opened right near us here in Euless. Their website is amazing– not only do they have a million recipes, but they also let you add them to a weekly meal plan. Then, it churns out a grocery shopping list for you. You can pick a dietary need (such as vegan!), and it will pull up a ton of recipes, along with consumer ratings and a scale size button (so you can multiply it for larger parties!). You can also submit your own recipes…seriously cool. Why hasn’t anyone thought of this before?

Go ahead, check it out! Maybe they have a location near you!

Flowers and Sunshine

After working out this morning, I headed to Walmart and bought some flowers and herbs. The weather is GORGEOUS today, a beautiful sunny 69 degrees (snowing yesterday….I know, seriously), so I took everything out on the back porch and potted my new plants. Then I came in for a fresh blackberries and orange juice snack. What a wonderful way to spend the morning!

These little guys were only $1.50 each! Marigolds, Begonias and even a Snapdragon!

Window view, including the cilantro and basil

The Handy-Man Can!

I’m absolutely tickled pink/proud of myself right now. Instead of taking a long nap after church this afternoon (my weekly ritual), I spent a few hours making a window plant shelf. I have a small gardening table on our porch and I plan to use it, but summers here are so hot that I knew I should grow my herbs and flowers inside. I can’t just set them on the windowsill, because that’s exactly where Mirabelle likes to sunbathe. You know. ON the plants. In fact, she likes this even more, probably because they’re soft and cushy. They don’t even last a day.

Back to my window-shelf. Did I mention that the whole project only cost $15?? And I did it ALL BY MYSELF!!! No Jesse. No internet. Not even help from the Lowe’s people, who were even WORSE at math than I am!! Our conversation went something like this:

Lowe’s guy: “How do you want these boards cut?”

Kelly: “It all depends. Are they exactly 1″ thick like it says on the tag?”

Lowe’s guy: “No, they’re 3/4″ thick.”

Kelly: “Alright, well, since my window is 30.75” wide, and I want 2 boards flanking either end of the shelves, I will need these other 2 cut to 29 1/4″ long.”

Lowe’s guy: <stares blankly> “Whaa?”

Kelly: <Tries to re-explain>

Lowe’s guy: “If your windows are 30 3/4″ wide, then that’s how wide we should cut the boards”.

Kelly: “I don’t think you understand! I can’t bolt these boards directly into my window, because the entire rim is made of metal. I am making a free-standing shelf.”

Lowe’s guy: “Okay, then we should cut the boards to exactly 30”

Kelly: <frustrated> “But there are two boards, meaning we have to deduct 3/4″ TWICE.”

Lowe’s guy #2: “What she means is this” (holds up the boards into a shelf for the visual learning application).

Lowe’s guy #1: “ohhh!! Haha, guess I’m really bad at math….”

Really. That was the problem?

Anyways, as you can see, I didn’t receive any help from those guys. I came up with the whole idea myself. I had mentioned my desire to make a plant shelf to Jesse a few weeks ago, but he was in the middle of some other stuff and didn’t have time to help me brainstorm the practical side of my dream. So, after dropping him off at work today, I swung by Lowe’s. I already had my measurements, I simply picked up the cheapest materials I could find and headed home to start!

Once I measured and marked and screwed everything in, I set the shelf into the window to see if it would fit. Perfect and snug. So snug, in fact, that I won’t need to bolt it into the windowsill like I had planned. Then, I took it outside and spray painted it white, so as to blend into the window better. It wasn’t an ideal day for painting– 45 degrees and windy, but hey, at least the snow from this morning had melted!!

So there you have it. I am now a handyman. I don’t think you realize what a big accomplishment this is for me– I can’t even hang a curtain rod straight!  I’m only good at putting stuff together when I have directions, and even then I’m pretty bad. The doors on my first TV stand in college were so crooked they didn’t even close. When I tell Jesse I’m going to do a project, what I really mean is, “In about 2 hours I’m either going to need you to rescue or re-do it”.

Next Step: As soon as the sun starts shining again, I am off to buy lots of herbs and flowers! Any suggestions? Basil the Giant Beanstalk, The Remix?

Fake flowers in vases for the picture


All of my supplies


..on springtime. It is now snowing.

Don’t get me wrong. I enjoy snow a lot–when it’s in WINTER!! But not after a beautiful 75 degree spring day like yesterday, where people were jumping and playing and the pool.

And now, it’s snowing. Just flurries, but I’m still upset.

Wedding Album

After 3.5 years of marriage, the time has finally come. I have designed our wedding album. Granted, it’s only through Snapfish, but I’m really pleased with the way the 2 albums I made for each set of parents (3 yrs. ago!) turned out.

I could’ve asked a professional, but every quote I’ve been given has been around $600, and we have other things we need to spend money on. This album is still pricey, especially for Snapfish. The one that I made for our parents cost around $50– this one is twice that, partly because it’s 12×12, partly because I included a lot of additional pages.

Go ahead, and preview it! I need your advice before I buy this bad boy!

On Another Note…

…Spring is here!!

The tree by our driveway

The tree across from our door