Wednesday, January 30, 2013


I had another ultrasound scheduled because I'm behind with my weight gain and the Dr. wanted to make sure the baby is growing.  I wasn't too worried about it because I've got a healthy reserve of "nutrition," but then I started getting things in the mail that said I was authorized for extra ultrasounds due to my diagnosis of "Poor fetal growth."  Well that just played mind games with me and kept me up at night!

I hadn't had an ultrasound in about 2.5 months, so I was so happy to see my little girl!!  Everything is looking normal and healthy.  The little miss is weighing in at 2.2 lbs which is a relief because she is actually a week ahead!  She is just stealing all my food and putting it in her belly!  She is lying in a transverse position (parallel to the ground) which I had suspected since I only feel her kicks on my right side and an occasional punch to the bladder.  And get this, she has a full head of hair!!    This is a shocker because I was a baldy when I was a baby.  It was such a relief to know that she is gaining weight and all my efforts to shovel food in haven't gone to waste.

I also got to walk away with the first ultrasound picture where she isn't looking like a squirrel.  I cannot get enough of that sweet face!  Look at those lips and sweet little nose! I am one proud mama and am quickly becoming one of "those people" who feels the need to show everyone a picture of my baby! Sorry!
Close up of the hair

I really think once Hershey's egg season rolls around, I'm really going to show that scale who's boss!!

Lady Di

This weekend was the first weekend without any schooling obligation whatsoever! I took my state licensing exam aka the NCLEX last week (still waiting on results) so I am a free woman!  I can't tell you how great it felt to be social with friends and family without worrying about the mound of reading and studying that was being neglected.

While I wait for my test results and for this baby to cook, I'm trying to keep myself occupied without going crazy.  So I planned a day trip to the Queen Mary with two of my favorite ladies for the Princess Diana exhibit they have going on.  Luckily Goldstar, had a deal so I was still able to maintain my frugal entertainment budget. :)

The special exhibit covered history on the Royal family starting back with the Queen Victoria Mary (who the ship is named after) and mother of King Albert or Bertie from the King's Speech.  They had all kinds of handwritten letters and china, coronation jackets and newspaper articles.  They even had a room on Wallis Simpson.  A few of Princess Diana's gowns were on display which was fabulous!  Did you know that she had 176 suits and 250 pairs of shoes in her closet in the 90s?!  I died and went to heaven when there was a room dedicated to William and Kate.  Kate and I both married princes and are expecting babies at the same time which practically makes us best friends!

Afterwards, we dined in the tea room and explored the engine room.  One of the propellers is still intact and boy, is it massive!  In World War II, the Queen Mary was used as a troop ship to transport soldiers.  The exhibit had accounts from soldiers who had to endure sharing a small stateroom with 18 men and only having 2 meals per day!  I wish we had more time to see the rest of the ship because it really was an interesting day!

Sunday, January 20, 2013

1st Trimester in Review

Got to blog on the joys of pregnancy so I don't forget and get duped into doing this again!!  Haha, I kid. But no really.

I don't think time passes more slowly than the first trimester of pregnancy. Trying to get through my last semester of nursing school while covertly being pregnant was definitely a challenge.  I really believed that I would be lucky or that the Lord would bless me and that I would not have morning sickness (really, it needs to be called "all day sickness".)  My mom didn't have morning sickness....surely I wouldn't either!  Besides I'm one of those people who vomit once every 10 years.  But oh how wrong I was!!  Luckily it only lasted 10 or so weeks and I really didn't mind losing 15lbs without breaking a sweat.

My favorite 1st trimester sickness memory was on my way into one of my clinical rotations.  From the hospital parking lot, there was a pathway into the hospital lined with trash cans every few hundred feet.  As I was walking in, I went from trash can to trash can tossing my cookies.  I can only imagine what the onlookers were thinking of the nurse who was walking into the hospital who looked violently ill herself.

Favorite 1st trimester food: I definitely ate a lot of Saltine crackers.  I even considered naming our unborn child in their honor, but I think McDonald's Egg McMuffins wins out as my saving grace.  According to my very scientific study, I was more likely to have a better day if I started out with an Egg McMuffin than if I didn't have one.

First ultrasound: My first ultrasound was at 7 weeks.  I just can't even describe the feeling of happiness/joy/relief when you see your baby is alive and well in there!

First thoughts on gender:  I was convinced this baby was a boy.  In fact, I'm still do not believe 100% that I'm having a girl.  I keep having dreams with little boy babies...even after we found out its a girl!  Weird!  I think I'll be reluctant to take the tags off of anything pink until she is in my arms and I can confirm she's a girl!  Boy or girl, this baby will be smothered in love!!

8 weeks--no bump! 

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Frugal Living in 2013

One of my goals for 2013 has to do with budgeting and being more frugal. I think its a skill to do more with less. And to become skilled, one needs to practice.  I'll admit, before getting married I was very wasteful with my money.  I had a good job, wasn't paying rent and so all that money went to whatever whim I had.  While I do miss shopping every Friday after work, manicured nails, eating out whenever I wanted and spontaneous trips, I realize I needed to grow up.  Luckily, I married my complete opposite in this category and I've learned a lot about saving and making different choices with my dollar.

We are reading Dave Ramsey's Money Makeover, which is really motivating. I love his theory of "living like no one else, so you can LIVE like no one else." I have also been scouring the web for frugal living blogs or tips. Lots of small, easy changes can have a big impact. I am not an expert at all, but I want to share things that work for us as I learn along the way.

-Be a planner.  Plan your budget.  Plan for your big expenses and save ahead.  Plan your menu/grocery list in advance, then stick to it.  Plan your errands to save gas.  Stay out of debt and pay bills on time.  Interest and late fees are just a are giving your hard earned money away for nothing!!

-Buying secondhand- Bet you couldn't tell that 90% of our furniture etc came from Craigslist or thrift stores.

-Eat at home as much as possible.  That means brown bagging it!  If you spend $5-10 on lunch every work day....that adds up $25-50/WEEK!!  Sometimes this one gets tough because who wants to make dinner every night?  Especially if you are a tired, pregnant lady trying to get through nursing school!  But I've found that if you have something easy in your freezer, its harder to rationalize going out.

-Drink water when you go out to eat. (This is still a work in progress because I count soda as my main food group, but consider paying $2-3 per person for a soda at a restaurant.  Guess what can get a 2L bottle for $1.69 or even $1 if its on sale.) Also skip appetizers and desserts.  No one needs that much food in one sitting.

-If you are hankering for a sweet treat or want to go out for ice cream, let me tell you about the McDonald's cone or Costco frozen yogurt.  Deliciousness for less than $1.50.  You can't go to Coldstone for that.

-Entertainment: This is one of my goals for for a few reasons.  We have been stuck in a dinner/movie date night rut.  I'd like to be more creative in this department and shake things up. There is nothing wrong with dinner and a movie, but toss in a few "free dates" per month and you will start seeing the dollars add up.  So far in 2013, we had a free date to Costco.  We ate samples, sat in their furniture, people watched, browsed through books and baby ended up being pretty fun.  We didn't take in a cart and we walked out spending $0.  We also made hot chocolate, put it in travel mugs and went to Barnes & Noble.  Luke quizzed me out of some of the NCLEX study aid books and it was fun getting out of the house.  Again, $0. Other ideas: free movie check out from the library or plan a pot luck and invite your friends over.

I'm definitely not looking to be an extreme couponer or to cut spending and make life miserable, but I am having fun trying to be more creative to do more with less. Smarter spending, if you will.  Any ideas, blog links or budget friendly recipes are welcome!!

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

2012 was a big year!

A lot of great things happened to us in 2012. I think 2013 will have a hard time trying to top it.  Here's a highlight reel, if you will since my blogging has been a little lack luster:

We made a check off my bucket list with a visit to France, Spain and Italy.  I still dream in baguettes, crepes and macarons!

I briefly got back into running over the summer and did some fun 5Ks and lost a few lbs (always a good thing!)

On Halloween we announced the wonderful news that we are having a BABY!!!  Still in awe and excitement everyday about this!

I tortured my family by making them wait to find out the sex until my sister got home from her mission....

We found out we were having a GIRL and shared the news with PINK cake!

My favorite brunette sister came home from her mission to Chile and I graduated from nursing school after a final internship on a cardiac unit!

What a year!! We feel incredibly blessed!  I can't wait to see what 2013 has in store for us!