Thursday, July 28, 2011

Boy or Girl

We had our ultrasound yesterday and we are having a GIRL!

Margot Jessica Potter will be joining us mid December.

We are so excited. I was hoping for a girl. The ultrasound was pretty amazing. She was moving so much and it was so fun to see. Although the ultrasound technician took forever to tell us. I didn't realize ultrasounds were so long and it wasn't until almost the end that we found out. She is perfectly healthy and weighs 12 oz.

Last night we had a celebration dinner at my Mom's. We had all my childhood favorites with chocolate pudding! It was a celebration after all. Then we got out all of my baby things so we can wash them. There are some adorable little dresses, a coming home gown, hand knit blankets and sweaters, little hats and two adorable little wool coats. I am so excited to get them all washed and put away in the nursery. I am so happy. Really I can't stop smiling:)

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

How my birth will not go

*Note: this will be one of those pregnancy posts where the naive mother to be muses about how perfect her experiences will be. For all of you mothers post delivery please just let me enjoy me dreams and don't dash them--thanks:)

Last night we watched the episode of the office where Pam and Jim have their baby. I was really excited for this episode--literally I squealed when I saw it was next on the disc. However, I found watching this episode to be very stressful. And at 3am when I was awake not sleeping freaking out about all the things that could go wrong with my birth I compiled the following list of things that will not happen in my birth.

1. If I am having contractions at work and attempting to work through early labor at my desk I will not tell my co-workers.

2. I will be heading to the hospital during the 5-7 minute stage and definitely if my water breaks.

3. My water will not break at work because that is just not cool

4. There will be no Michael Scott driving us to the hospital (luckily we don't know any Michael Scott's)

5. Nobody will break the windows into our house and then demolish our beautiful kitchen while I am giving birth

6. We will have a really nice nurse who will not look at us like idiots when we request to keep our baby in our room and she certainly would never suggest giving him/her a bottle of formula

7. The lactation consultant will all be women. No strange man is looking or touching my breasts PERIOD

8. We will have our own room

9. When we leave some member of our family will have the car seat already properly installed in the car which is waiting by the hospital entrance

10. We will come home to a nice, clean, orderly, empty house--there will be no Dwight and as previously stated our lovely kitchen will be intact

Monday, July 25, 2011

Monday Monday

We had a great weekend in Klamath Falls for a Family reunion. It was so fun to see all of my extended family. I grew up camping with this side of the family and was able to reminisce with my cousins about all our adventures. One of my cousins just had a baby who was 11 days old on Friday. I was able to hold him and he was so tiny, 6.9lbs. It was amazing to hold such a tiny baby. He just sort of melted into your arms. It was also crazy to think that in 4 months a baby that size will be inside me! Craziness!

We are two days away from our ultrasound and I can hardly wait. Chris and I both think it's a girl but as somebody pointed out that's even more reason for it to be a boy. Soon we shall see.

We finished sanding the dresser for the baby's room and will be painting it this week. Then later this week we can go pick up nursery paint. I am getting bigger by the day and it's motivating me to get projects done early. I do not want to be scrambling to finish up when I'm 8.5 months pregnant.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Vegging Out

As I have mentioned many times on my Blog Chris and I don't have cable or Internet at home. We rely on the library for all our TV and movie viewing. The upside of this is it's free. The downside is that sometimes we have to wait a long time for things. Last year we started watching the Office and we were able to move through season 5 fairly quickly but came to a long list for season 6. Yesterday, after 6 months of waiting, we checked out season 6! So last night after dinner was made we settled on the couch for a good veg out session and finally got to watch the Office wedding. It was so worth the wait--hilarious! Also I'm finding it very entertaining to watch pregnant Pam on the office while I'm pregnant. Let's just say I can relate in many ways.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Saving Money pre-baby

Nothing brings out my consumer instincts like baby items. When the first of my friends to get pregnant had her baby shower I may have gone a little crazy in Target. Chris may or may not have had to have a talk with me about the appropriate amount of money to spend on shower gifts:) Everything was so cute, and soft, and fun to buy, I couldn't help it.

Now that we are expecting our own baby one of the challenges for me has been to not buy things. It has helped during the past 5 months that I don't know if it's a boy or girl. But that will soon change and my resolve will be tested.

The thing is we are on a budget. And while there will be things we would like to buy for the baby there are other more pressing realities like our mortgage and paying for the baby's health insurance and my pre-natal care. As much as I'd love to go out and buy soft cute baby things I logically know that we need to be careful with our money. We agreed to not buy things for the baby until after our showers. We have thought a lot about how we can save money and not get swept away in baby purchases. I though I'd share some of what we've found for others who may be in the same boat.

1. Used baby items: some baby thing are best to buy new due to recalls and safety concerns but many things can be purchased used. Our area has a number of baby consignment stores and there is of course Craig's list. Once we've had our showers and know what we still need to buy these will be the first places we look.

2. Reassess what the baby needs: some people, books and stores will lead you to believe that baby needs 2x as many things as they actually do. When I first started looking at things we'd need to get I was so overwhelmed. But once I started going through that list with my Mom and other Mom's I soon realized not everything was necessary. We are taking a hard look at what is a priority and necessity for us and what we can perhaps do without. Some of the items we will not be registering for are: a baby bath tub, a diaper genie, a wipe warmer, a bouncy seat, a walker, and a jumperoo*. The jury is still our on a swing. We will be investing in some high quality slings/carriers (either the ergo or bijorn), a new car seat, a new crib and a cradle for the first few months.

3. Avoid buying clothes at first: this is the hardest thing for me. But logically I know that we will get a lot of clothes as gifts and that the baby will move through sizes quickly. Further these are so easy to get second hand.

4. Investigate your parent's attic: Turns out my Mom kept a ton of our baby things. She has a lot of our nicer clothes, blankets, handmade sweaters, hats, booties and coats. These things will help us a lot. She also has toys, books and movies from when were kids as well. Besides most of these items are higher quality than a lot of what is on the market today and they are timeless.

5. Be creative with nursery furniture/decor: One of the items we will be getting new will be our crib but we found a less expensive safe classic design. We will be pairing it with a garage sale dresser that we are refinishing and a rocking chair from my Mom's garage. My Mom and I are sewing the crib linens and curtains ourselves. And I plan to use framed story book pictures as wall art along with some things I'm making. The total cost of our nursery will be around $450.

6. Maternity clothes for less: Maternity clothes have been a challenge. I hate the idea of spending the little money we have to spend on maternity clothes. I'd so much rather spend it on baby clothes. Luckily I have been able to stretch a lot of my n0n-maternity wardrobe due to the bellaband. I have filled in the gaps with a handful of Goodwill purchases. I will be honest looking for second hand maternity clothes is not easy. Often I have 3-4 trips with out a single item. A lot of the used clothes are ugly, stained or not even close to my size. But when I do find something that works it is worth it. I have bought one pair of shorts, one pair o pants, and two tops for $15 dollars.

We will also be taking advantage of my birthday which is in august. We have asked my Dad to buy us the crib for my birthday present and my Mom is going to buy the material for the nursery linens for my present and then help me sew them. I will be using birthday money I get for other things we need. Someone said this was sad but I can't think of anything I want more then the things we need for our baby.

These are just some of our ideas. I would love to hear ideas or tips you have for saving money on baby things.

*I'm not saying these are good or bad items and if they were a life saver for your baby that's great. I'm simply saying these are some of the things we are going to try and do without.

Monday, July 18, 2011

Pregnancy update: week 19

This week I am 19 weeks pregnant with the baby. We just have one more week until we find out if it is a boy or girl. It's amazing to me that we are this far along. It seems like just yesterday we were waiting for our first doctors appointment. It is also a little scary that we are so close to his/her arrival. Next week marks the halfway point and when I think about all the things we need to do before this little one arrives it's easy to feel a bit overwhelmed.

There is no doubt that I look pregnant now. I am still mostly wearing non-maternity clothes thanks to the bellaband I can still wear all of my pants. Tops are getting a little trickier. Luckily I had a lot of blouses and loose fitting tops that still work. I did buy a pair of maternity shorts and two maternity tops at Goodwill a few weeks ago and last night I found a pair of old navy maternity cords at Goodwill. I am trying to stretch my non-maternity clothes through the summer so I can just go buy a few fall things in September to get me through the last couple of months.

Generally I feel really good. Lately I have noticed that my feet start to swell if I am standing too long and I tire more quickly on my feet. I am still doing prenatal yoga which seems to help and we try and walk a lot. I am starting to get hungrier and am eating more than I was a few weeks ago. I still sleep okay which I am thankful for.

This week the baby is the size of a mango. I can feel him or her moving inside. This weekend I felt a lot of movement it was really fun. It will still be a while before Chris can feel it.

We are still working on sanding the dresser but hope to finish it this week so we can paint it. We have a handful of house projects we want to get done in the next few weeks so we can focus on the nursery.

A weekend at the Beach

We had a wonderful weekend. I wish it hadn't ended. We spent the weekend in Neskowin on the Oregon Coast with Chris family. They rented a beautiful beach house right on the beach. It was so beautiful. The weather was a little drizzly as you can see from the pictures but the beach was still fun and we found live starfish which were so neat.

Friday, July 15, 2011

I'm old but I don't care

So in college I used to go on 2-3-4 hours of sleep all the time. I was notorious for pulling all nighters and can't remember an occasion when I actually started a paper more than one day/evening before it was due.*

Despite perhaps my better judgement I went to the midnight showing of the Final (tear) Harry Potter movie last night with my sister. We arrived at the theater at 7pm, hung out in line outside until about 8:30, stood in a slightly moving line until 10 and then settled into our theater to wait a final two hours. The movie ended at 2:40am which put me in bed at 3AM. Sadly my alarm woke me up at 6am for my 7am meeting. So now I am moving through my day in a zombie-esque state. It's painful and I feel very old.

It was a very interesting evening for me. First of all it really felt like the end of an era. As we were waiting in line my sister and I were reminiscing about when we first read Harry Potter #1 13 years ago (she was 7, I was 12), dressing up for midnight book release parties, and waiting in line hours for each new movie. It's weird to think that when our kids read Harry Potter they will just be able to move through the books, no waiting 2 years for the next one. Harry Potter will be to them what Star Wars was to us. So strange.

I also have to say that I have never felt as old, fat or pregnant as I did last night at the theater. Most of the other movie goers were middle, high school and college students. And the place seemed to be crawling with stick thin, high schoolish age girls in what I can only call sexed up Harry Potter costumes. This made me feel fat and pregnant for obvious reasons and old for how shocked I was at what they were wearing.

In the end though I had fun and I enjoyed the movie. Furthermore in 7 more hours I can go home and back to sleep:)

Did anyone else brave the midnight showings last night?

*It must be said that despite this I did get very good grades in college especially on my papers. I just happen to work best in a high pressure environment. I swear to incurable writers block until approximately 24 hours before something is due.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Baby Chris

I often wonder who the baby will look like. Recently my in laws gave me a flash drive of old family photos from when Chris was little. Looking at these photos makes me want a baby boy who looks just like him. He is so cute and he looks so happy!

Here he is clearly up to something!

This is such a sweet picture. I am guessing he's in kindergarten.

It so neat to see his personality in these pictures. It's funny how much we change while at the same time how much we stay the same.


I am loving the working Mom series on A Cup of Jo this week. I think it's been particularly interesting to me since I do plan on going back to work after our baby is born and how to handle the work/home balance has really been on my mind lately. It's great to see how these successful women handle both work and kids.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Homemade Bread

This weekend I decided to make homemade bread. I used to make homemade bread all of the time before Chris and I got married and the first year we were married but since my job has become more demanding I really haven't done it as much. However, Friday when we were at the grocery store I became so irritated at the price of bread (4-5 dollars a loaf for good bread) that I decided to make my own.

Here is my favorite recipe for homemade bread. It is so easy and delicious.

Old fashioned wheat bread

3 1/2 cups all purpose flour
2-3 cups whole wheat flour
2 packages of yeast
1/4 cup shortening
1/2 cup brown sugar
2 1/2 cups water
1 TB salt

Place all purpose flour and dry yeast into mixer bowl. In sauce pan mix water, sugar, shortening and salt. Heat to 115-120 degrees. Add to flour mixture and mix on medium speed scraping bowl for 30 seconds. Beat on high for three minutes. Slowly add the whole wheat flour until it's too stiff to mix in mixer. Turn out dough on lightly floured surface and knead for 10-12 minutes. Place in greased mixing bowl and cover with bread towel. Let rise until double (about one hour). Punch down dough and divide into two balls. Cover with bread towel and let rest 10 minutes. After ten minutes form into loaves and place into two greased bread pans. Cover again and let rise until double about 30-40 minutes. Bake at 375 for 35-45 minutes.

I had forgotten how wonderful baking bread is. I kind of think it's therapeutic. I love the way the dough feels and I get a lot of satisfaction out of kneading my own dough. You can kneed it in your Kitchen Aide with the dough hook but if you have never tried it by hand try it once. The bread is delicious. We have been eating a lot of it with homemade strawberry jam that my Mom made and nice tall glasses of whole milk--yummy!

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Thursday Randomness

I'm drinking chicken broth at my office. I love homemade chicken broth and it makes such a nice snack.

Our office is freezing. I HATE air conditioning. I swear we air condition buildings to be comfortable for grown men in wool suits.

I'm taking a break from baby/pregnancy books to read this book:

It's really interesting.

Chris and I are learning about parenting via the Cosby show. I am not kidding. It's great. It's so funny and it starts all of these conversations between us on how we would deal with ____situation. As always we are checking it out from the library.

This weekend is our last weekend at home for for the rest of the month. Next weekend we are going to the coast with Chris' family, the following weekend my family is having a family reunion in Klamath Falls and the weekend after that is our church camping trip.

We are slowly making yard progress. Our yard was a little out of control when we bought our house and 2 months of rain didn't help matters much. We finally got our hand me down lawn mower started. Our next step is to weed and feed the yard and continue the round up and weeding.

Well that's what's on my mind this Thursday. Happy almost weekend--

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Cravings and Aversions

One of the strangest things about being pregnant has been cravings and aversions. At first I was very nauseous and hardly wanted to eat anything. For a few weeks I only ate toast, chicken broth and baked potatoes. I couldn't stomach meat, eggs, noodles of any kind, or anything with a strong flavor. At the same time I craved baked potatoes like crazy! Once my nausea passed I found I was very picky for the first time in my life. I have always eaten pretty much anything and had very little patience for picky eaters. I'm becoming a lot more patient. I still can't eat noodles or strong flavored foods and I have a hard time with meat and eggs (they have to be scrambled with toast or grits). Chicken is okay but I can only eat beef in chili or tacos and ground. I usually just want to eat the foods I ate as a kid. These days we eat a lot of tacos, baked potatoes, chili, oatmeal breaded chicken strips, BBQ chicken, Thai chicken tacos, scalloped potatoes, scrambled eggs and toast. There are also a lot of nights where we simply eat a baked potato with fresh veggies from our CSA box.

I still have cravings right now it's for strawberries and milk. Last week it was dark greens, a while back it was a turkey sandwich with cranberry sauce. And always baked potatoes. I don't think I've had any strange cravings. Rather what's strange is how consistently I crave baked potatoes and how upset I become if I can't have what I'm craving. Tears have been shed more than once! I do believe that if you are craving a whole food (as opposed to BBQ potato chips or candy) you should eat it. I think we crave things our bodies need. There must be something very good in baked potatoes that I need--perhaps potassium.

For those of you who have been pregnant, what were your cravings? Anyone crave pickles and ice cream?

Friday, July 1, 2011


Chris and I are part of a CSA (community supported agriculture) program. We pay a yearly fee in May and then each week from June 1st-October 31st we get a box full of fresh organic local produce from a nearby farm. It is so fun! We never know what we are going to get and then we have the challenge of finding new ways to eat the veggies. It's a lot of veggies. Here is our box this week: one bag of salad mix, one head of lettuce, one bunch beets with their tops, one bunch green onions, one bunch basil and broccoli.

Last night in celebration of fresh basil and green onions Mom and I made Thai Chicken Tacos. This is a recipe we have adapted over the years from a Rachel Ray recipe for Thai Chicken wraps. It's a wonderful light recipe perfect for summer.

Thai Chicken Tacos

boneless skinless chicken breast
corn tortillas
green onions
red bell pepper
fresh basil
olive oil
rice wine vinegar
sugar or agave
salt and pepper
chunky peanut butter
soy sauce
cayenne pepper

Make salad:
combine bite size pieces of cucumber, tomato, red bell pepper. Add shredded carrots, chopped green onions and fresh basil. Add some olive oil, rice wine vinegar, a pinch of sugar or agave, salt and pepper to taste. Set aside.

To make sauce:
combine about a quarter cup peanut butter, 2 TB soy sauce, 1 TB rice wine vinegar, and a dash of cayenne pepper. set aside.

Grill chicken and heat tortillas. Spread each tortilla with peanut sauce, add chicken and top with fresh salad.