Sunday, October 19, 2014

Baby2's Room--Bright and Beachy

A and I finally picked out a paint color and he painted Baby2's room this week as musical couches was completed with the donation pickup. We went with Valspar's beach blanket color to keep the room colorful, light and airy while being in line with the nautical/sea theme. It also goes with the rest of the colors in the house to keep the peaceful, relaxing vibe going. We splurged and got the new top-of-the-line paint with zero VOCs that's easily washable. It needs to hold up and last a long time so we thought it's worth the extra bucks. With the paint up, a trip to Walmart yielded a turquoise and white rug that will go down once we carpet clean the whole house.
Fresh beach blanket color paint. 
M2's contribution is a twinkle twinkle little star wall hanging. She grabbed it at the store and loved it so into Baby2's room it goes! What's a nautical theme without some stars to guide you, right? I also got an anchor decoration to paint and hang. One of our family traditions is my painting a big wooden letter of the new baby's first initial to put up on the wall. I haven't found one I like yet though I've got a few ideas on colors. M2's was pink and glittery. Her room didn't have much pink so it became a girly statement piece.

All the other wall decorations have been picked. I plan to buy them off Amazon this week, along with all Baby2's and M2's birthday and Christmas presents. I want everything done at least a week before Baby2 arrives so I don't have to deal with it! Gamma and Gampa will send the new crib and mattress soon as well. As deliveries come in, I'll be hanging and A will be building. M2's room is getting a slight re-do as well--the changing table it coming out of her room to go to the new baby and she's getting a set of cubbies for her toys and treasures instead.

Now, to get the closet cleaned out and reorganized so I can wash all the baby clothes, blankets, bibs, burp cloths, etc., and get them put away. Not to mention the big pile of stuff that needs to clean out of the room and all the books and knickknacks to take off the bookcase. The laundry hamper and diaper pail need to be selected. In other words, (as you can see from the picture) there is still a ton to do and not very much time to do it in since there is only about 5 weeks to go! Our next two weeks are packed with other appointments and activities (Halloween fun!) which eats up even more time. The to-do list of non-baby before-baby items is long as well. If you don't see many posts from me, that is why.

Monday, October 13, 2014

Peach Crisp

Being pregnant definitely has it's perks, like being to eat almost whatever I want and not get funny looks from people. But it also has it's downside, which in my case happens to be the ridiculous cravings that come on strong and won't leave until I eat whatever it is my brain has decided needs to be eaten. That craving this week was peach cobbler.

Since I wasn't in the mood for making dough, I decided to do a peach crisp instead. I looked up a few recipes and then basically threw some ingredients together and stuck it in the oven. It turned out perfectly!

K's Peach Crisp for One (or Two)

  • 2 large peaches, cubed
  • 4T white sugar
  • 3/4 c instant oatmeal
  • 1/2 c flour (I had wheat open, so that's what I used)
  • 1/4 c brown sugar
  • 1 stick butter

Preheat oven to 350F. Place your cubed peaches into a shallow greased baking dish. Top with white sugar. In a mixing bowl, combine oats, flour, brown sugar, and butter. Using your hands, break up the butter until it looks like tiny little balls smaller than marbles. Spread over the top of the peaches. Bake for 35-45 minutes or until top is golden brown and peaches are tender. Enjoy!

Summer Reading Club Book #4 - Big Little Lies

From here on out, the "Summer" club will just be known as "K's Book Club"... I guess I didn't think I'd have time to read once summer was over? Not sure!

The book I just finished was Big Little Lies by Liane Moriarty. It is about a group of moms, mostly wealthy, and how they deal with the everyday dramas of their life in the seaside town of Pirriwee Peninsula, Australia. Sounds pretty boring, right? WRONG. There is so much drama, so much tension, and then when you think it can't get any thicker, a murder. Don't worry, I'm not spoiling anything for you - you find out about the murder on page one!

Big Little Lies brings to life the true juiciness of upper-middle class suburban life. These moms have nothing better to do than play judge and jury to each other, and as that plays out we learn about their secrets, their fears, and their strengths. In Pirriwee, you absolutely cannot judge a book by it's cover!

The book is well over 450 pages long, but it reads like a short novel. I literally could not put it down. Every page made me want to get to the next page and the next and the next, and suddenly it was all over. I can't wait to get to the library tomorrow and pick up another one of Moriarty's books!

Bonus: It looks like Big Little Lies will be made into a movie! Yay!

Friday, October 10, 2014

Homemade Donut Holes

JI is constantly asking for "baby donuts from the donut shop," aka Tim Horton's TimBits. They cost $1.99 for a 10 pack, which isn't too much, but when this kid wants them every day, it can be a bit much. So, I busted out my Baby Cakes cakepop maker and made him some cinnamon-sugar donut holes, for free, at home.

I used my pancake recipe, because I knew that it works well in the cakepop maker. Then I rolled the hot donut holes in a cinnamon-sugar mixture. JI loved the first few, but then he realized they weren't "real" and decided he hated them. Now I have a ton of donut holes left! I think next time I will try making "real" cake donuts and frying them on the stovetop or possibly using the cakepop maker again.

Thursday, October 9, 2014

A Quick Update: M2's Speech and Baby2

This week has been busy with kid-related appointments and having my parents in town visiting. One of the big appointments was to get M2's speech intervention rolling.

M2's Speech Development
M2 isn't quite where she should be speech-wise. She understands everything, has ways to get her points across, she just won't use words most of the time. Except for a select few, the words she does know she refuses to use often. A and I have been working with her doing everything we can think of to no avail. The pediatrician said we could either start looking into therapy now, or wait until she turns 2. However, when she turns 2 is just after Baby2 is born. Taking that into account, we decided to start intervention now.

When asked what the next step is to get her help, the doctor very helpfully only said to "call the county." The county very helpfully only has info on getting assistance with speech for kids 3 and over. After some research and asking around at library time, I found a place not too far away that specializes in therapy for under age 3 only. The nice lady I spoke too arranged an appointment for initial intake at our house. She came over this week, met M2, asked a bunch of questions, and set us up for the next step of a complete evaluation. In a few weeks, M2's going to have "playtime" with a couple ladies who will do a full eval then give us the results. The woman today said she's obviously very intelligent, we just need to get her to start using more words. It's expected that she'll be on track with everything else.

After the evaluation, our intake coordinator sets M2 up with a therapy plan. The good thing about this organization is that they find it important that the child is in their own environment for therapy. The therapist comes out and word with her and show A and I things we can do with her the rest of the time.

The plan right now is to get all this set up and maybe even get a session or two in before Baby2 arrives. At the least, we'll be ready to go as soon as things settle down with him.

Baby2's Room
Last week, we finally narrowed down the choices of paint colors for Baby2's room to four. Once we get those up on the wall we'll (hopefully) be able to pick one. Right now, there's a futon in there so we can't paint the whole room. The futon needs to go in the family room, which has another couch in it. That one needs to go in the living room which--you guessed it-- also has a couch in it. The hospice we're donating one couch to comes next week, then we can play musical couches and start painting. You can read more about the plans for the nursery here.

At my weekly appointment the doctor said Baby2 is on track. The only downside is that he hasn't flipped yet--he's still breech. He's got a few weeks left to make the flip and I'm hoping he does as I don't want a C-section for a number of reasons (the big one being surgery and I don't mix, at all).

A and I checked out the other choice of hospital for labor and delivery finally. M2 got to spend time with Grandma and Grandpa going to the pumpkin patch, animal park and out to dinner while I was busy with the tour and doctor appointment. It's a good thing we did the tour since we've decided we like the hospital better than the one we were thinking of using. As long as Baby2 doesn't come earlier than 38 weeks, we plan to use the one we toured. The big selling point for me was all private rooms and wireless monitors so I won't have to be strapped down uncomfortably to a bed for hours. That part was NOT fun with M2 and I think labor would have gone faster than the 41.5 hours it took had I been able to move around. I also can't get comfortable in beds sitting up or lying on my back--which is the position I got stuck in so the doctors could have the monitors work.

With less than seven weeks to go, there is still plenty to do on our lists!

Sunday, October 5, 2014

Slow Cooker Potato Soup

At the first sign of fall, I will immediately make two of my favorite cold weather dishes: chili and potato soup. I didn't have any ground beef last week, so potato soup came first!

Mmmm pomme de terre
My potato soup is not like a chowder with liquid plus potato chunks. I use the stick blender to puree the potatoes and combine the flavors, so it has a different texture. This also prevents slivers of potato skin from floating around, yet keeps the nutrients that the skin contains!

Don't be like me - watch how much cayenne you add!
The recipe is very inexact: As many potatoes that will fit into the slow cooker, about 4T each of garlic powder and onion powder, 2T each cumin and black pepper, and 1t cayenne, then fill to the top with milk. Cook on low for 6-8 hours (until potatoes are soft), blend, serve! Yum! If you don't have a stick blender, you could scoop out the potatoes and blend them in a food processor or blender and add them back into the slow cooker, and repeat until all the potatoes are pureed.

Serve with shredded cheese!