Sunday, June 12, 2016

Some Normalcy

The last two weeks or so have been tough--the events around the nation and in my own neighborhood have been painful to watch. I have no brilliant insights, and I have no political speeches. I'm just sad and confused and angry and scared and--most of all--so worried that my children will grow up in a world where these kinds of events are so common. I hope somehow that things will get better.

Meanwhile, I'm here tonight to share a little in hopes of setting a tone of normalcy. It's comforting, I guess.

Last week, after work, Terry and I walked with Marshall to vote. It was actually my first time voting in person--I've always done a mail-in ballot--so I was excited. Marshall kept saying, "Going to vote!" so I felt like I was part of a mini-parade. We took turns playing ball out front while the other parent voted. (He chose this stance for himself when throwing a ball. I appreciate the effort.)

A recent no-cook breakfast: toast with peanut butter and some peaches. Simple and no clean up!

I don't always find it easy to give Marshall tasks in the kitchen, but this week we had him shred some pork with Daddy. Success!

We took that pork (used this recipe) and piled it onto buns with pepper jack cheese, avocado, and tomato. We also attempted homemade curly fries, but the recipe was insanely spicy. We'll definitely try them again, but we need to check out some other recipe options.

This weekend we had quite a few fun events on our agenda: date night in watching Deadpool Friday night (good, but I fell asleep because I was beat), visiting our friends and their kids on Saturday morning, and (for me) working graduation at UCLA on Saturday evening. I made it home just in time to put Marshall to bed, so I was thrilled to say goodnight to him at least.

This morning we took things pretty easy, including a "cupcake" and tea party for Marshall and Daddy.

And the big event today was having our old birth teacher (from our Bradley Method course last pregnancy) over to talk about exercise and lots more. She took me through a full workout with pregnancy-safe exercises that I can use for the rest of my pregnancy, and it was great to get some feedback about my posture and form as my belly grows. I think I did well with exercise during my last pregnancy, but now I know I was definitely using some moves that were inappropriate, so it's great to have a full workout I can do anytime.

The rest of our time with our teacher was spent talking about my pregnancy, labor, and eventual C-section with Marshall, as well as factors that can influence this pregnancy, labor, and birth. We decided that physical and emotional stress were huge factors in my pregnancy with Marshall that may have contributed to his early arrival (moving at 30 weeks, too much driving and travel, stress about work and finances, fears about how parenthood would impact our marriage/us as individuals/our extended families, and doing too much in the week or so leading up to my water breaking), and we discussed ways that this pregnancy is different and how to keep my stress levels low. Funny enough, even though I'm working and have a toddler this time, I feel less stressed. We are also stopping travel and long road trips after next weekend and looking at other ways we can keep my/our stress levels low. I'll write more about how I'm preparing for a VBAC in another post, but I think today's conversation helped a lot to boost my confidence and help me identify tangible things I can do to ensure I enjoy a healthy pregnancy and, of course, do my best to have a healthy baby.

After our teacher left, we took the day really easy. I did some food prep, like these banana-coconut muffins, which I love to have on hand to throw in Marshall's lunches, and Terry got rid of our big armoire from Marshall's room to (eventually) make room for another bed. (Also, it wasn't bolted to the wall, and it made me nervous to have a free-standing HUGE piece of furniture in the room where Marshall plays so much.)

We made zoodles (zucchini noodles) with Alfredo sauce and broccoli for dinner, a surprisingly delicious meal, and now I'm gearing up for another week. Let's hope it's a good one, huh?

Sunday, June 5, 2016


What a crazy week! Best of the week was an ultrasound and learning that baby is doing well. He or she is measuring about a week ahead of schedule, about the same as Marshall was most of my first pregnancy. 

Some shots from lately:

Our first time making (and eating!) panzanella, which I HIGHLY recommend. It's going to be a summer staple around here, especially once tomatoes are in season at the farmer's market!

We're trying to find good ways for Marshall to cook in the kitchen with us, and guacamole is an easy one!

Fish tacos! We bought a ton of fish, so half is still in the freezer for another meal. Plus Mexican corn salad and Marshall's guacamole.

Marshall's two-year checkup! He did great, despite having to hang out in his diaper for a while (he really doesn't like not wearing clothes).

Scout hasn't made too many appearances on the blog lately, but he's still our little snuggle buddy. He's been pawing my tummy relentlessly since I got pregnant, so I wonder if he's trying to prevent another loud human from entering his space.

Recently Daddy was out for a dinner event, so I got to take care of bath (Terry normally does bath time and I do story before bed) and tried to snap a photo of the occasion. He was too giggly!

We spent Memorial Day weekend at the delta with my family:

(Marshall driving the boat with my dad)

Fishing with Uncle Chris

LOVING swimming in the water

Marshall's first s'mores experience! My mom offered to have a birthday cake for a little belated celebration, but I suggested s'mores instead. WAY more fun!


Terry and Marshall still go to swim lessons almost every week, but Marshall's confidence has really started soaring. Swimming in the delta last week in a life jacket gave him some freedom, so this week Terry wrapped the noodle around him and let him do his thing. Look at that little boy go!

Today we drove out to visit Terry's grandparents, which was fun for all of us. He got another cake! By the way, the cake says "Mustang" because Terry's grandparents have nicknames for Terry, his brother, and now Marshall, all based on the year they were born. Terry was born in the year of the tiger, so he's Tiger. Marshall was born in the year of the horse, so he's Mustang! Baby #2 is going to be the year of the Monkey.

Marshall also scored a new garbage truck for his birthday and loves it!

Plus his first hammer, which he used today to help Daddy "build a house" (actually, build a storage cube).

This cube was our first change in the kids' room to make space for another kid. We have a huge armoire in there now, but it's going to have to go to make space for a second bed. This cube fits perfectly into the closet in the room.

Tonight's dinner was broccoli cheese soup. I'm not sure exactly what I did differently this time, but it was the best version of it I've made yet!

Here's hoping this week is much calmer, both at home and at work. I have a six day work week ahead, and I'm bracing myself for it.