Thursday, December 27, 2012

how to babymoon

i've decided that there is a rule out there somewhere that something unfortunate must happen on all our trips together. this summer there was that plane ride from hell which has loverboy convinced he can't fly anymore. two years ago there was that completely rained out trip to Charleston. two thanksgivings ago, we went camping in the freezing cold and the screen on my camera cracked. and before that, there was the epic failure of our honeymoon in Mexico, wherein we got sick from the water somehow (even though we tried to avoid it at all costs) and spent the next two weeks at home wrapped around the toilet, all our stuff still in boxes in our new apartment. that was a wonderful way to start married life (honey, pass the toilet paper). yes, i might still be a little bitter about it.

so, in keeping with tradition, we decided to get food poisoning on our last day in the mountains in North Carolina during our babymoon this week. we spent the whole drive home and all that night as sick as dogs and only started feeling back to normal again this morning. you gotta love tradition, don't you?

speaking of traditions, you may not know that we don't celebrate christmas. i didn't celebrate it growing up and now loverboy and i still don't. i've never put up lights or decorated a tree or stayed up waiting for santa...and to be honest, i never really felt like i was missing out on anything. however, i may have fallen completely in love with the bazillions of christmas tree farms we passed on the way there. i never knew christmas trees could be so cute—all lined up and fat and puffy! especially since on the day we arrived there was snow on the ground in the mountains. i totally get the allure now.


these could be better pictures if they weren't taken from the car window. but after five hours on the road, we are more like aren't-we-there-yet-angry-face than oh-look-lets-stop-for-a-photo-opp. and when i say we i mostly mean me. i wish i were more of the scenic route variety person, but i'm just too impatient.

the trip all began when we thought it would be fun to rent a cabin in the mountains and be all outdoorsy for our babymoon. instead, we ended up staying in a lodge that was "cabiny." as in, there was wood on the walls and a hunting motif:

but with extras like a hot tub and dining room. it was a really cute room though and we even got the front desk guy to find us a plug for the bathtub so we could use it. apparently he knew the plug was broken but no one has wanted to use the tub before. most of the trip was nice except that we realized when we got there that it's really a skiing town. and being that close to winter wonderland fun that i've also never done before and couldn't do still, was kind of a downer. to cheer ourselves up we searched for snow-worthy coats as it had snowed five inches just before we got there, visited three different locations of the legendary Mast General Store and stocked up on candy, drank hot chocolate and watched indiana jones in our room when it started to rain.

we did have fun driving on those twisty mountain roads, taking photos of beautiful farmland and looking around antique stores. my favorite part was the snow, playing pool and spending time together. but as we drove home in agony, loverboy decided we were never going back there again. which is probably good because it makes it that much more special.

and now for some pics of the good times:

first hot chocolate at a bagel place while frantically trying to find a bathroom. oh pregnancy!

festive truck in boone, north carolina
Mast General Store, home of candy and other outdoor goodness

loverboy looking studly with his Cheer Wine soda out in the country

once the snow melted and it started raining i didn't feel stupid wearing wellies in the mtns.
on our hiking trip before it got interrupted by a monsters-sized, loose, black dog who wanted to eat us.
just before loverboy demonstrated the consequences of scratching on the eight ball. our last night of fun.
our just-been-poisoned faces before we left to puke our guts out.

and that, folks, is how you babymoon.

so-happy-to-be-home B

Thursday, December 20, 2012

an accomplishment of dinner

i really, really feel like it's in the cards for me to one day work a full, creatively fulfilling day, run five miles with lars, whip up a nutritious, not-from-a-box/freezer dinner, load the dishwasher, have brilliant, spirited conversations with lover boy, write something beautiful and touching on here—and be really happy doing it all, too. (come on, just go with it.)

i also think that one day i'll live on a farm with miniature donkeys, raise baby tigers and sleep under the stars. but that's not what this is about.

this post is about making dinner. dinner has not been on my list of things to do lately. i mean, i'm already making a living person out of my own body, what more do you want of me?? that's my take on it. which means we've been eating an awful lot of Buitoni pasta with pesto. and broccoli if i'm feeling exceptionally epicurean.

but maybe i'm finally getting that second trimester "energy burst" everyone keeps saying i'm going to get. or maybe it's the cookies and chocolate and pumpkin pound cake that keeps getting sent to our office at work (please make it stop, my huge belly begs you). either way, this week i made chicken tortilla soup for dinner (which has lasted us five nights so far!), and if you ready my last post you should know that this was an accomplishment of grand proportions. maybe even calling for a trophy. just saying.

anyways, i felt like since this was one of the handful of times i've actually taken the camera out for something other than a belly shot (not going so well either) in too long, it called for a blog post. right? i know, don't get excited.

(okay so, the chips are covering up the evidence. use your imagination!)

Lover boy says it's now a family recipe, never mind that it's basically the Pioneer Woman's recipe. it's that good. if you read nothing else in this post, read the recipe and go make it right now. you will probably want to give me a trophy afterward. 

Recipe Adapted from The Pioneer Woman

  • 1 Rotisserie Chicken
  • Some Olive Oil
  • 1 teaspoon Cumin
  • 1 teaspoon Chili Powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon Salt
  • 1 Diced Onion
  • 1 Diced Green Bell Pepper
  • 1 Diced Red Bell Pepper
  • 3 cloves Garlic, Minced
  • 1 can (10 Oz. Can) Rotel Tomatoes And Green Chilies
  • 32 ounces, fluid Low Sodium Chicken Stock 
  • 3 Tablespoons Tomato Paste
  • 2 cups Hot Water
  • 1 Chicken Bouillon 
  • 1 can (15 Oz. Can) Black Beans, Drained
  • _____
  • Diced Avocado
  • Shredded Monterey Jack Cheese
  • Cilantro
  • Tortilla Chips
Take chicken off the bone. Set aside.
Heat some olive oil in a pot over medium high heat. Add onions, red pepper, green pepper, and minced garlic. Stir and begin cooking, then add the spices. Stir to combine, then add shredded chicken and stir.
Pour in Rotel, chicken stock, tomato paste, water, bouillon and black beans. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to a simmer. Simmer for 30 minutes, covered.
Check seasonings, adding more if needed---add more chili powder if it needs more spice, and be sure not to undersalt. Turn off heat and allow to sit for 10-15 minutes before serving. 
Ladle into bowls, then top with cheese, diced avocado, cilantro, and chips.

Thursday, December 13, 2012

a short update and no pics

it's been so long that maybe i should feel too embarrassed to write anything, but since i've probably lost any readers i had, i'm going to take this long-awaited opportunity to hang up the ever-present internal editor and just write what i want here. there's a good chance it will be about nothing, but this is what i like to call reverse psychology and low expectations. tell me that no one is looking and i might actually blog more than once every other month.

so, yes, things have been rough around here. it turns out that getting pregnant and starting a new job at the same time is not the recommended way to do things. but i don't listen to recommendations when they really matter. cause that's how i roll.

apart from growing a human being in my body, i've been going to bed at 9:30 every night (lame!), going to work every day, and trying not to eat everything in sight. but seriously, it feels like that's ALL i've been doing. i haven't had much energy or capacity for anything else, which has been a bit depressing. but with a break from work coming up in a week, i'm starting to feel like it's time to bust out of this rut and have a life again...or at least pretend to.

this is what i want to remember about life right now:

baby kicks feel like frogs, jumping in my belly (so strange!). daily exercise never felt so hard - i might have misled the midwife last week about getting thirty minutes a day. i have a pregnancy workout that i've done three almost six months. loverboy's dismayed reaction when i started patting my belly like a drum (it really sounds like a drum!): what are you doing? there's a baby in there! (i secretly think baby liked it). we are so proud of our morning green drinks that consist mainly of spinach, kale, walnuts, flax seeds, soy milk, fish oil and a banana. that's how i justified eating three sugar cookies at work today. the baby made me do it. i never appreciated before how easy it used to be to bend down and tie my shoes. or sleep on my stomach. lars is super frisky now with the cooler weather. looking for houses is sometimes fun (when you see a house you really like) and sometimes super stressful (when the house you really like is really too expensive) but we're also very sure that God will give us the right house. spending extra time in prayer with a few companions in these weeks has been so wonderful and renewing.

well, i think that's all the creative juice i have in me. plus it's already almost forty minutes past my bedtime!

goodnight all

working-pregnant-uninspired B