Sunday, March 30, 2014

Potty Training Gold.

So I’m a bit hesitant to post this out of fear of jinxing a good thing, but I feel like I’ve struck potty training gold. About 2 or 3 weeks ago, out of the blue, the little one decided she was ready to begin using the potty regularly…and she was good at it immediately!


Eugene & I have intentionally talked about the potty, let her have free access to the bathroom {as awkward as that can get}, and we even sat her on the toilet daily from a very very early age – like way before she could even understand what was going on! We’d just have her sit on the toilet before bath time every night. Every now and then for the past 4 months or so, she’s gone on the potty when I’ve asked her to or when she’s been in the mood, and it’s worked occasionally, but she never really wanted to do it on her own regularlyreguarly. Well, that is until a couple weeks ago when something just clicked!


Once I realized she decided that she was ready for it, I jumped on the bandwagon wholeheartedly. I’d remind her every hour, and when it’d been a while, I’d pester her every hour while being careful not to make it sound like she had to or it was a punishment. I didn’t use any sticker or food reward; I simply went absolutely nuts when she had a successful try. I’m talking clapping, jumping, dancing, singing personalized upbeat potty songs in celebration. She thought it was so funny and special to see me cheer like a crazy woman for her, I think that was motivation enough to keep going. So when I’d remind her that it was time to try to potty, I’d remind her also that I’d sing and dance and we’d clap together afterwards. This seemed to work well for us. Also, as weird as it may be, she really thought it was neat to dump the little potty into the toilet. So the celebration combined with dumping was just the fun she needed to keep forging ahead.


And, amazingly, there’s been no turning back. Even when she’s wearing a diaper, she will still tell me she needs to potty. I’d be as bold as to say that it’s seeming like she is completely “day” potty trained at 21 months. She hasn’t mastered naptime {although she’s doing pretty well with it}, and bedtime hasn’t been tackled yet. She will wake up at 1am sometimes yelling, “poppy!” but it’s usually a little too late. I’m in no rush for the bedtime training. I’m thinking that might just have to wait until she’s a little older and her bladder’s more developed. We’ll see though – she continually surprises me! {P.S. I think every toy we have has been on the potty at some point. It’s so cute to watch her sing and jump for her stuffed animals, pretending they’ve had a successful time with it!}


I’ve waited to post anything on this topic because a) it’s a little awkward and I want to respect her, and b) I wanted to make sure it wasn’t just a fluke, but I finally decided to post it because I’ve come to the conclusion that it’s a development worthy of celebrating! {That is, without the awkward naked baby private parts or poo photos…I’ll pass on those.} I’m truly proud of her, and this newest phase certainly depicts her character – something I want to remember for sure. She is my little independent, joy-full, intelligent, confident one. I knew she would have to just decide to be potty trained; I just had no idea it’d be so soon and with such sudden success! I’m so proud of her little spirit!


Sunday, March 23, 2014

Pregnancy update.

I feel like I need to introduce myself again. I’ve been a little {a lot} absent on this blog lately…or the last two years. I’m not going to apologize, because I’ve been busy living and loving life, but I’m going to attempt to hop back into posting here a bit more regularly as baby’s due date gets closer.

I’ve avoided taking any dreaded “selfies” so far this pregnancy, which is a far cry from my chalkboard monthly pregnancy last time around. However, to do a pregnancy update without posting a picture seemed a bit criminal. So here ya go…


I feel like I look huge already – way bigger than last time, but I guess that’s normal with round two. It really depends on the day. Some days I don’t have a big belly, but others {like today} are all bump. I can still kinda look not pregnant if I wear certain outfits, but when I put on a tight maternity shirt, there’s no hiding the bulging belly. Here’s another pic I tried to take with my phone, and it captures my life perfectly right now…


She’s my little blur, running circles around me. And yes, I’m barefoot and pregnant – hardy har har. Okay, onto some of the usual questions. If this bores you, sorry; feel free to move on.

How far along are you now?
I’m just a few days away from 19 weeks. I feel like it’s going quickly, probably because I’m so busy being a SAHM who works from home and in the office some too.

How are you feeling?
I’m finally feeling better. I’ve been MIA on the blog through the first half of this pregnancy because I pretty much felt like crap the whole time. I may be wrong, but I feel like this pregnancy has been much different {so far} from my last pregnancy. Last time, my biggest symptom was dizziness; this time, I haven’t experienced hardly an dizziness, but had much more nausea and fatigue. It’s pretty much every night that I wake up around 10pm on the couch to Eugene telling me it’s time to go to bed. I can’t fight it. I just fall asleep daily between 8:30 and 9:30…I’m so exhausted. Around 16 or 17 weeks along, my nasty nausea seemed to dissipate, {thank goodness!} which was perfect timing because Eugene was out of town for a few days right around that time.

Have you had any cravings?
Yes, and they usually change from week to week. For a while, I was craving soups, vegetable soup mainly. I craved tuna salad a few times, and Mexican food this week. I craved milkshakes a couple weeks ago. Contrary to last time, I haven’t craved my two previously biggest cravings popsicles or McDonald’s {ew} at all this time around. Perhaps it will come, but my indigestion has been super bad this time, so the idea of McDonald’s is a total turn off.

Are you going to find out the gender?
Yep. And I’m pretty stinkin excited about it. I don’t like surprises, and I really like planning {hints my career as an Event Planner/Manager.} Eugene likes stats; any info that’s available to him, he wants to know it. So, while I know some people love waiting until birth to find out the gender {I admire you!}, I just don’t think that’s for us right now. I’m not sure if we’ll do a gender reveal party like last time. The timing isn’t great with Eugene’s baseball schedule, and I just don’t know if I have the energy to throw it all together. We’ll see. We had a much more fun announcement with this pregnancy compared to last time {because we were pretty scared last time following the miscarriage,} so I won’t be super disappointed if I can’t pull together another gender party. At the very least, I’d like to at least tell both our families at the same time if possible.

Do you have plans figured out for when baby comes?
Hmm, nope, not really. A lot is hinging on the gender. I purposely picked a room color/scheme that would work with either gender, so we plan to move the little one {who will need to get a new “blog nickname” soon!} into a new big girl room and let baby take the current nursery. As far as work goes, we’re going to keep praying on it. I have a fantastic situation of being able to work from home most of the week, while heading into the office a few days. It’s been a huge God-thing, allowing us to pay off all our debt, but we want to be wise and open to what God wants as our future changes. We’d love to get a bigger vehicle so that I can take my niece places – meaning 3 car seats, but it’s probably doubtful that we can swing that. We’ll continue to use cloth diapers, and I won’t have to purchase any additional ones. Other than all that, I think we’re pretty set – well, that is unless it’s a boy. Then we need manly clothes for sure.

What has you most excited?
Probably the thought of the little one having a sibling. She’s going to absolutely love her baby brother or sister; she’s such a friendly and joyful person, so having a built-in sidekick is going to be awesome for her. I’m also super excited to see Eugene become a dad again. That just might be my favorite part about being a mom – watching him love as a dad – and I cannot wait to see him form that bond again. I’m also really excited to welcome another little being into our family. I think I’ll be able to enjoy the newborn stage more this time around. Last time, I had no concept of the light at the end of the tunnel. We had serious feeding issues, and now I’m aware and prepared for those again. I also wasn’t confident in my mothering skills {although I doubt myself plenty still, don’t get me wrong}, but my fear and anxiety really affected the little one’s demeanor the first few weeks/months. I know it’s tough now. I know the first months are really REALLY rough, but I also know now how absolutely beautiful parenthood gets. I’m not one of those moms who falls instantly in love the second the baby is placed on her chest. I take time to form relationships and bonds. Maybe that’s bad, or maybe it’s taboo to say, but now that I’ve experienced the incredible bond that I have with the little one, I know the sweetness that’s ahead with this baby. The pure joy that grows is unparalleled. And I am so excited for that.


Saturday, March 15, 2014

New favorite soup.

I tried a new recipe, well actually two. But one is definitely worth sharing. This Creamy Chicken Soup recipe on, is unlike any other soup I’ve made or tasted. It was SO good. I’ve actually made it twice in the past 3 weeks. My first batch I gave to Eugene’s family because they watched the little one during one of my late-night events. The second batch was for me, but I also shared some with my mom, grandma, and sister. The reviews were unanimously positive. Everyone loved it.

I followed the recipe pretty closely; however I made a few substitutions to better fit with what I had in my pantry. For instance, I boiled a whole chicken the first batch I made, along with making my own chicken stock. The second batch, I used the rotisserie chicken as it calls for, and both batches were delicious. I used Italian Seasoning instead of the Herbs of Provence. I also used shredded parmesan instead of gruyere cheese as the topping. SO good. {Did I already say that?}

If you’ve never boiled a whole chicken, this blog post on is really helpful. I usually hate to boil whole chickens because I get grossed out pulling the meat off the bone. This time around, I followed my mom’s advice of letting it boil until the meat started falling off the bones. This made it really easy to “pick” off the meat {and I could even use tongs to do most of it} which made it much less gross.

Creamy Chicken Soup_1

Creamy Chicken Soup_2

One chicken gave me a whole bowl of shredded meat and two large containers of stock/broth.

Creamy Chicken Soup_3

Unlike most of the soups I make, this recipe doesn’t require hours of boiling and cooking on the stove. This one {other than boiling the chicken} only takes about an hour or less.

Creamy Chicken Soup_6

I made some crusty French bread, but I didn’t love the recipe enough to share it. I like my Italian Herb Bread recipe much better.



Creamy Chicken Soup_5

This soup was super good reheated the next day too. The recipe says you can freeze it, but I didn’t have leftovers long enough to freeze. I will definitely make this recipe again, and probably double it to share again. :)


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