Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Hot dogs and Cheetos

When I first got pregnant with my daughter, I wasn't sure what to expect since I had never been pregnant before. All I knew is what others had told me, and one thing they warned me about was the cravings they had when they were pregnant.

We have all heard the story of how pregnant women get sudden urges for crazy foods like pickles and ice cream, so I was prepared to suddenly have an intense need for peanut butter and chicken nuggets, or something along those lines. As my pregnancy progressed, I still no cravings. At one point, I had an amazing lamb dish at a fancy restaurant when I was travelling. It was the best lamb I had ever had and I wanted more. But then, it wasn't like I HAD to have lamb at that very moment, I just wanted that same dish again because I had enjoyed it so much. I ended my pregnancy without eating even one pickle, much less with ice cream.

Enter pregnancy #2. In the past 2 weeks, I have had so many cravings, it's insane. It would be nice if I could settle on one food that I really craved and just buy a lot of that food, but unfortunately, my cravings vary from day to day. So far, I've wanted:

  • Hot dogs. I never want hot dogs. They're not healthy and probably have just as much nutrition as a car tire, but one day, I just had to have a hot dog. This is how my husband guessed that I was pregnant.
  • Tacos (authentic ones). This craving actually caused me to go online and drool over a local Mexican restaurant's online menu. Sad, I know.
  • Cheetos. I mean, when aren't Cheeto's delicious?
  • New York pizza. This was a very inconvenient craving because I wasn't like I wanted New York style pizza, I wanted the actual slice of chicken and broccoli pizza I had gotten in New York years ago when I had gone on a road trip with friends.
  • French Fries. McDonalds satisfied this craving. The fries were delicious, but I think what I really wanted was the ketchup since my ratio of ketchup packets to fries was 1 to 2.

I had a couple of friends tell me recently that they craved salads and vegetables. I'm not one of those women. Luckily, I'm still able to run, so that's what I'll be doing until I get too big. Afterall, I hear it's not too healthy to gain all 30 pounds within the first 8 weeks of pregnancy. Now to find some snacks....

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Lil kidney bean

I got my first peek at baby #2 today. At only 6 weeks old, Two doesn't have much in the way of features yet (he/she still has a LOT of growing to do), but I got to see the little heart beating, and it was just as amazing as the first time I saw my little girl's heart flickering away on the monitor. Life is so beautiful.

Monday, April 19, 2010

The simpler things in life

This is my daughter. At 13 months, she has more toys than a Toys R Us. In fact, she has so many toys, that her toys have been given their own room so she can make as much of a mess as she wants to and I don't have to worry about cleaning up. What does she love to play with? Anything that is not a toy.

My child makes a toy out of candy wrappers, tupperware, hair ties, and little pieces of paper that she finds on the ground. Her greatest victories are when she crawls around the living room or kitchen and finds that little something that you dropped under the recliner, behind the bookshelf, or any other place adult hands can't reach. She will find your dirty sock and drag that thing around the house like it is a new toy.

Her new favorite morning activity since outgrowing her Johnny Jump Up is to follow me into the bathroom as I'm getting ready for work, and open my bottom drawer to play with whatever she can find. Her favorite toy in the drawer is a gallon bag that I keep a bunch of random stuff in. This is a bag that I throw my odds and ends into - the stuff I don't want just laying around the bathroom. In the bag, there are old bobby pins, 6 different tubes of travel toothpaste, toothbrush covers, Tums, deoderant, and extra contact cases. To me, the bag is full of a bunch of random junk that I don't want to throw away. To Haley, this bag is full of fun toys.

Every morning while I get dressed and put on my makeup, Haley crawls over to the drawer, pulls out the gallon bag, and dumps its contents on the bathroom floor. She then proceeds to spread everything that fit so nicely into a gallon bag all over the bathroom floor while she plays who-knows-what with my bag of junk. I never stop her because she's having so much fun with such simple little objects and it only takes me a couple of minutes to scoop everything back in the bag in preparation for her to scatter them across the floor the next day. With a whole room full of toys that light up and make noise, she'd rather sit on the bathroom floor and play with my travel toothpastes. If only the rest of us could appreciate the simpler things in life, I have a feeling the world would be a much happier place.

Monday, April 12, 2010

And baby makes 4

Well, it looks like we brought back a little souvenir from our cruise to the Caribbean :)

I'm extremely excited about having Baby #2, but I don't think it's sunk in completely yet. I have a 13 month old who: sleeps through the night, plays independently, eats table food, and is starting to walk. And now, I'm trading it all for long nights, diapers x2, endless rocking, and spit up. But more importantly, for first smiles, baby hair, tiny clothes, cuddling after a bath, baby squeals, and the wonder of holding that new little person in my arms for the very first time.

I'm ready.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Tiptoe through the sandwort with me

As I told you in a recent post, I was rooting around in the dirt last weekend to prepare my sad, weed-ridden little garden for some flowers. Now, let me start by saying that I've never actually planted my own garden before. I've seen a garden before - that's gotta count for something, right? My parents have had plenty of gardens, and I have a few memories of being forced to weed said gardens as a child (child labor!!), but those days have passed. Now, I'm all grown up and have decided to venture out into the wide world of flora on my own.

With a Home Depot gift card in my pocket, I set out this afternoon with a singular goal: buy flowers that will look nice in the front flower beds (and second less important goal: stay within $50.00 since that was all the gift card had on it). Thanks to many tips from more florally-inclined friends, I learned the difference between "perennial" and "annual" plants, and had decided to get some of both. Buying bulbs was a no no because I'm impatient and want instant results. If I was going to spend hours digging in the dirt on my hands and knees, I want to see flowers right away dang it! There was no way I was going to wait a year to see flowers.

I pulled up to Home Depot, grabbed a cart and headed for the garden area. Thankfully, Home Depot understands what it's like for those of us who are flower-impaired, so they had large signs with bold print reading, "annual" and "perennial." I wanted to get at least one perennial, that way I would have something that would grow back each year (i.e. less digging in the dirt for me). I settled on one called a "sandwort," which sounds more like something from Harry Potter than a flower. It's a nice, white bushel of flowers that looks nothing like sand or warts, but who am I to judge the Flower Namers?

Next, I wanted to get a bunch of pretty annuals that I could plant in front of my yellow and green shrubs. After much searching through the jungle of annuals, I settled on two different kinds: petunias and marigolds.

I thought that the combination of all 3 flowers would make for a nice contrast in the garden with the yellow-green shrubs. So, not knowing exactly how many flowers I needed to buy, I loaded up my cart and went in search of some topsoil. After finding that (and proving how weak I am by trying to lug several 40-lb bags into my cart), I headed to the check out line.

Needless to say, I did not stick to my $50.00 budget. I tried to, but in my defense, the Home Depot card had less money on it than my husband claimed (shameless justification). After several more hours of planting and more weed removing, I'm done! Well, almost done. I also picked up a couple strawberry plants and a tomato plant, so if I loose the battle of the flowers, maybe I'll be able to keep the produce alive.

Friday, April 9, 2010

Forgetting to remember

This past week has a been stressful one for a variety of reasons. I've decided that weekdays consist of 5 days because that's just the amount of time we're able to handle without time off before we lose it completely and dive off the deep end into insanity. Lets just say that after this week, I'm even more excited about the weekend than usual.

Throughout every stressfull time in life though, I seem to keep forgetting to remember. To remember that worrying gets me nowhere. To remember that each problem will get resolved eventually. To remember that there are more important things to do than worry. To remember that God is bigger than all of my worries. Worrying is something that I try not to do very often, but when I do, I tend to go a little overboard. I'm pretty sure I'm not alone in this :) I don't like that I worry so much, and I definitely don't like the anxiety that comes along with the worrying (as it so often does.)

In the midst of my little worry-fest the other day, I did what I should have done when I first started to worry and read what the Bible says about worrying.

Psalm 46: "God is our refuge and our strength, an ever-present help in trouble. Therefore we will not fear, though the earth give way and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea, though its waters roar and foam and the mountains quake with their surging."
How many times in life do I just allow myself to worry and fear rather than giving my fears to God and sheltering myself in Him? Am I so proud that I think my problems are bigger than a mountain falling into the sea? Even then God says not to worry. He is our refuge and strength. He is not just there when He decides it's convenient. He is ever-present.

God, help me to remember.

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Rub a dub dub

We played with bubbles tonight.

And Haley got a full beard. Check out those sweet side burns!

Saturday, April 3, 2010

Spring has sprung!

Spring is in full swing at the McCaffrey house. The tree in our front yard has sprouted beautiful pinkish purple flowers, and our lawn (or should I say our weeds) is growing like crazy thanks to the rain lately.

Today, I spent 2 hours weeding the flower bed in the front yard to get it ready for planting some flowers next weekend. I've never planted a garden before. My husband says I have a black thumb, and I (unfortunately) have to agree with him on this one. I have slaughtered at least 3 orchids that he's given me (can I blame it on the lack of tropical weather in the house?) and the poor little potted tree in my front window is in serious need of some H2O. It's dropped so many leaves that I have to do constant "leaf checks" on the floor because I keep finding Haley gnawing on fallen leaves. I suppose while I'm doing my leaf patrol I could stand to water the plant, right?

The previous owners that lived in this house did absolutely nothing with the garden. We have several overgrown yellow-green shrubs in front of the house (which Google just informed me are called "Golden Euonymus" and are able to grow in poor soil and are "easy to grow" which translates to "Jen can grow these without killing them.") There is also a lovely selection of dandelions, clovers, and other random weeds that snake from the front flowerbeds and back into the alcove between the garage and the front wall of the house. For the record, I don't know why this little alcove exists, other than to be a varitable "weed wonderland" because it's not like you can see it well from the front of the house, and it's so shadowed that nothing could ever grow there. Except weeds. And lots of them. Hence the 2-hour long weeding session.

I never knew how stubborn weeds were before today. These suckers had some amazing root systems that were several feet long and grew all along the length of the alcove. I have a new hatred for weeds after all the digging and grubbing around that I did earlier, but never have I been so proud of a plot of dirt in my life. I think I'm ready for some planting next weekend!

For those of you with green thumbs, do you have any tips, words of wisdom, or prayers for me as I go to choose flowers? I have no idea what grows best. I know I don't particularly like roses, and I like a lot of color. That narrows it down to a few

Friday, April 2, 2010

A Pear to Remember

Congrats to my friend Lindsey of A Pear to Remember for reaching almost 2,000 viewers! If you want to learn how to cook delicious, healthy food (or even if you'd rather just look at some fantastic pictures of delicious, healthy food) check out Lindsey's blog! She's a modern-day Julia Child who teaches us all how to cook with (and appreciate) fresh ingredients.

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Ode to the Truffle

I heard some terrible news this morning from the Starbucks barista as Pat and I were pulling up to the window for our daily coffee fix. Starbucks is discontinuing their Espresso Truffle drink. You may think this is not as tragic as the war in Afghanistan or the passing of the recent healthcare bill, but that's probably because you haven't tasted this amazing drink.

I stumbled upon the Espresso Truffle accidentally a couple years ago when I decided to order something new at Starbucks, and I haven't looked back since. For those deprived people who have never tasted an Espresso Truffle before, I ask you, WHY IN THE WORLD NOT?? Starbucks combines their signature hot chocolate with milk and espresso and tops it off with whipped cream which results in a rich flavor that tastes exactly like a chocolate truffle. For those people who want a boost but aren't big on the "coffee flavor" of coffee (I am not one of these people, but I have heard of these crazy individuals) you need to try this drink. And for those people who love coffee and chocolate like I do, you have no excuse. I have recommended this drink to people so many times that Starbucks needs to start paying me for their marketing. And yet, all my efforts were for nothing.

Espresso Truffle, you had me at the first sip. Now what am I supposed to do? Was it me? I can change! I'll drink 2 Espresso Truffles a day! I wasn't ready for this, things were going so well. And all this time I thought we had something good.


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