Monday, July 28, 2014

Let's Catch Up....

I'm so ready for fall. When searching for an image for this post, I found the one above, and instantly desired brisk morning air, beautifully colored leaves, spicy beverages, and a change in fashion. Fall is my most favorite season, and as July comes to a close, I'm reminded that it's just around the corner. However, fall is not the purpose of this post. Today I want to play catch up with you all and fill you in on why I've been so hit or miss these past few weeks.

I am not a bad blogger.

No, but I am a very pregnant blogger. This is the sole reason why posts have been sporadic. I didn't get a pregnancy update posted last week for two reasons. 1) Hubs and I kept forgetting to take a picture, and 2) things have been crazy from one day to the next 'round here lately. Miss E likes to get everyone riled up for no reason, which makes sitting down to write a blog post difficult. Here's what's been happening with that....

The Baby....

Even if my doctor's weren't talking about inducing me prior to my due date, I firmly believe E will be arriving early on her own. Not only has she been head down for two months, she's been head down and face back for a month, and has landed me in the hospital at least once over the last two weeks with contractions. My cervix was still closed as of Saturday night, so we're just left here wondering what stops she'll pull out next. Our bags are packed and ready to go, so if she decides to surprise us all, we're ready for her!

The only news otherwise I have to share is we find out next week if we'll be induced at 37 weeks or not. 37 or 39, we'll have a baby in 2-4 weeks!

Recipes....

Between multiple doctor's appointments that take several hours each, and a body that is really struggling to handle this stage of pregnancy, my days are spent on the go or laid up on the sofa. I haven't cooked dinner in over a week {my wonderful husband has been taking care of that for me}, so there definitely isn't any recipe experimentation going on here. Even before I took my dinner hiatus, it was a miracle to get anything on the table, let alone something new and time consuming, so that explains the lack of recipe sharing going on.

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Homemade Sidewalk Paint {and a Surprise}

How to Make Homemade Sidewalk Paint — a Modern Mrs.
Remember earlier this summer when L and I sat down to create her Summer Bucket List? Well, we've been checking things off that list left and right lately, and I couldn't be happier! This past weekend J was able to knock four items off in one night by taking her out for a date, which included dinner at a local Chinese buffet restaurant, bowling, dessert at Rita's, and geocaching. Phew! No wonder he was asleep by the time I got home from my neighborhood baby shower. {If you want to see a Bucket List Progress Report, let me know!}

Anyway, one of the items on L's Bucket List was to make Sidewalk Paint, so here we are. This project is incredibly easy and inexpensive, and well-rounded as it doubles as a science and art project. L learned the reactive properties of mixing baking soda and vinegar, as well as basic color theory by mixing food coloring to create other colors. I will say this project is ingredient heavy, so it's a good thing the ingredients are so cheap, because you'll be needing more as soon as you're finished.

On with the fun!

For this project, you will need:

  • Plastic Squirt Bottles
  • Equal parts Corn Starch
  • Baking Soda
  • Water
  • and about 4-6 drops Food Coloring

Friday, July 18, 2014

[Poll] Bedroom Conundrum

This week's poll is special — a dear friend of mine needs your help! She and her husband are expecting their third child, and they are looking for a solution to their bedroom conundrum. Here's the situation:

Three bedrooms. The parents in the master, a 10-year-old boy in one bedroom, a two-year-old boy in another, and a baby on the way. What do you do?


There are a number of different sleeping solutions, and they're looking not only for a general solution, but also for suggestions on what to do in the event baby number three is a girl. Please disregard the gender for the purpose of the poll, but feel free to share your suggestions in the comments! Bonus points if you've been in this position and can share some practical advice!

Cast your vote below!


Note: There is a poll embedded in this post.

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Pregnancy Whoas and Woes

Pregnancy Whoas and Woes — a Modern Mrs.

Confession: If a pregnant woman tells you she has zero complaints about being pregnant, she's lying.


Pregnancy is a beautiful thing, sure, but it's not easy. Not.at.all. If I'm being completely honest {and I always am}, I'd say it's about a 50/50 split of "Aw, this is the best thing ever!" and "[Insert ache/pain/side effect/etc.], *Grumbles*, I cannot wait for this baby to get here!" Well, at least a 50/50 split when I'm pregnant....

Have you seen the movie What to Expect When You're Expecting? No? Watch it, and in the meantime, watch the trailer.


Elizabeth Banks' character is me. The magical pregnancy unicorn? That happens, but it's more likely a film/print media charade. Sorry to burst your bubble, first-timers, and for those of you who aren't pregnant, but hope to be someday, don't let me scare you off! Pregnancy is a beautiful thing.... in the sense that you are blessed enough to grow a tiny human inside of you, then give birth to this tiny human to raise and provide your family an indescribable amount of joy. All the rest? Not beautiful. Worth it, but not beautiful.

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

New: Sigma Standout Eyes Collection

New: Sigma Standout Eyes Collection — a Modern Mrs.
The Sigma Beauty Standout Eyes Gel Liner Collection features an array of long-wearing, opaque and saturated colors. All gel liners are versatile, yet unique and unexpected with intense pigmentation and a smooth, fluid-like finish.
Sigma Beauty Standout Eyes Gel Liner Collection — a Modern Mrs.
I love gel liners! Especially those in vibrant, not-everyday shades, such as Standout Peacock and Royally Striking, which are set to release on July 21st. {That's next Monday!} Unfortunately, I don't have any details as to how much product you get for the $14 price tag, but I'll try to find that out and post an update if I can.

33 Weeks Update

33 Weeks Update — a Modern Mrs.
Well, we have a lot of catching up to do. I suppose the best thing to do would be to go through the weekly details, then fill you in at the end. Yeah, let's do that.

Stretch Marks: Still rockin' the same ole's!

Belly Button: Still flat. I don't think it's going to pop....

Linea Nigra: {That's the dark line down the front of your belly.} Remember last week when I said I thought I saw one? Well, I didn't. It must've been a line from my shirt or something, because there isn't anything going on now.

Clothes: No snugger than they were last week, but I did buy some new bras at Motherhood Maternity yesterday. I went to get nursing bras for when E is born, but honestly, those suckers are so darn comfy I'll probably start wearing them as soon as they're washed. If you're wondering, I purchased the Sports Clip Down Nursing Bra and Wrap Nursing Sleep Bra. Motherhood is having a buy three, get one free sale, and I needed two sizes of each, so I enjoyed the deal. {They're offering this sale online, too, so if you need some nursing bras.... Oh, and don't forget to go through Ebates to earn 2.5% cash back on your purchase!}

Heartburn: It has returned! And you know what? I ain't even mad. Right around the time it disappeared E's growth slowed down. It recently came back, and we discovered she had gained some weight, so while I'm not saying it definitely has anything to do with that, I'll gladly take the heartburn if that means she's gaining some weight!

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

5 Reasons You Should Be Meal Planning

5 Reasons You Should Be Meal Planning — a Modern Mrs.
I'm a huge advocate for meal planning. In fact, when asked how we save money on groceries, the first thing I mention is that we plan our meals. It makes that much of a difference! My journey with meal planning began in 2009 when I was laid off from my job. I had $100 in my checking account and, of course, we were out of everything. I had to get as much food as I could with that $100, and make it stretch as far as I could. We had officially become a one income family, and I wasn't sure if we could make that work. I was presented with this challenge, and I was determined I would prevail! At that time I was able to purchase two weeks of groceries for that $100, and it was all thanks to meal planning {and a few coupons}.

Now, a lot has changed in five years — prices, store policies {Thank you, Extreme Couponing, for ruining it for the rest of us....}, etc. — but my process is still the same, and the first step in my process is planning our meals. My husband is paid bi-weekly, so I shop for two weeks at a time. Even if he were paid weekly, I probably still would shop for two weeks, because I really loathe repeat trips to the store. I don't plan our breakfasts or our lunches each day, as most days that consists of cereal and sandwiches, so our meal planning is primarily for dinner. I know some people that meal plan include breakfast and lunch, but that doesn't really work for us for many reasons. Even with only planning for dinner, doing so saves us a ton of money. With that said, let's get into the five reasons I believe you should be meal planning:

1. Meal planning saves money.

Is there really any other motivator? Well, yes, there is, and I'll get to them shortly. However, saving money is nothing to sneer at, especially in our still-shaky economy. If your family relies on one income like mine does, every penny really does count, and meal planning helps eliminate unnecessary purchases.

For example, I plan our dinners for two weeks. I then go and check our fridge, freezer and pantry to see what we have/what we need to prepare those meals. Whatever we're lacking goes on the list. I have a strict "if it's not on the list, it doesn't get bought" rule, so I better hope I don't forget any ingredients! Knowing what meals you'll be making eliminates the splurge buys while at the store, or the "I can't remember if we have [insert condiment here], so I'll just get another" scenario. You know what you'll be making, you've checked your stash, and you're ready to go!

Monday, July 7, 2014

32 Weeks Update

32 Weeks Update — a Modern Mrs.
Here we are again. Another week down, 5-8 more weeks left to go. I have appointments this week to see how E is developing, so I don't have any new information to share at this time. I'll fill you in next week if anything has changed. As of right now we're just sitting tight.

Stretch Marks: I haven't noticed any new ones, but I'm sure I won't be able to tell till after delivery.

Belly Button: Still flat.

Linea Nigra: {That's the dark line down the front of your belly.} While it's not dark, I thought I noticed a faint line from my belly button down, but that could've been my eyes playing tricks on me. Let's just say no, for now....

Clothes: Getting a little snug, but still wearable. If I really only have five weeks left, I'm not interested in buying any more maternity clothes. If I need anything it'll be more yoga pants or a flowy shirt, but I'm holding out.

Heartburn: I haven't noticed any flare-ups lately.

This past week: Some contractions, but nothing serious. Lots of movement from Baby E, including hiccups several times a day. I pretty much just stay tired. Sleep eludes me at night due to hot flashes and bouts of uncomfortability, but I'm not complaining.

Thursday, July 3, 2014

Chickpea and Spinach Curry Recipe

Chickpea and Spinach Curry Recipe — a Modern Mrs.
When labeling this recipe, I really wasn't sure where to place it. Is it lunch or dinner? Main course or side dish? Honestly, it's all of the above! This quick and easy vegetarian dish can be served alone as a side, or paired with pita chips as an appetizer, or served atop rice as a main course {which is how I prepared it}. It's rich in fiber, truly tasty, and my nine-year-old {who can sometimes be funny about cooked spinach} gobbled it up!

The original recipe called for 1/2 cup water, but it made the dish very runny, so I don't recommend using that much unless you find your dish is on the dry side. With the undrained tomatoes, that shouldn't be a problem, but I felt it was worth noting before we went any further. I believe it's better to add less, and possibly have to add more, than have too much and spend twice as long cooking it out {like I had to}. After all, this is supposed to be a quick dish!

Chickpea and Spinach Curry Recipe

[Adapted from MyRecipes] Yields 3 servings.

  • 1 cup Coarsely Chopped Onion
  • 1 1/2 tbs. Ground Ginger
  • 1 tsp. Olive Oil
  • 1 1/2 tsp. Sugar
  • 1 1/2 tsp. Red Curry Powder
  • 19 oz. Chickpeas/Garbanzo Beans, rinsed and drained
  • 14.5 oz. Diced Tomatoes, undrained
  • 4 cups Fresh Spinach
  • 1/4 cup Water
  • 1/4 tsp. Salt

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

[Printable] Lemonade Stand Poster & Menu

Free Lemonade Stand Poster & Menu Printable for Kids — a Modern Mrs.
It's summertime, and you know what that means.... Plenty of free time for the kids, carnivals with delicious funnel cake, and wonderfully sweet lemonade. While you could argue carnival lemonade is the best there is {and I wouldn't fight you on it}, truly the best kind is that which is sold by adorable children standing in their front yards or neighborhood corners attempting to make some money for [insert current coveted item here].

L and her friends have often set up shop to sell lemonade, which is usually held at one particular neighbor's house who has an actual lemonade stand. So, when thinking up summer-appropriate printables, this was something that almost immediately came to mind! Today's printable includes a vibrant poster/invitation your kids can hang up/hand out prior to the event, as well as two menus — one with pre-printed snacks, and one left blank so you can fill in your own.

The poster and menu can be printed on standard paper, but will really pop on 8.5x11 white cardstock, which you can find at Walmart for less than five bucks! {$4.93, to be exact.} Oh, if you're going, don't forget to pick up some fun straws too!
 

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