Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Pregnant and Tired

I thought I was lazy, then I remembered I'm 16 weeks pregnant. Phew. Last week I made one meal and it wasn't even on my weekly meal list I shared with all of you. Just a simple spaghetti. No shame though. I'm just realizing that there really is a baby inside of me and I'm kind of feeling it.

I slept in until 11AM the other day too! Boy oh boy, I guess I needed some extra z's. My friend said, "Enjoy it while you can!" I am waking up in the middle of the night to relieve my bladder now. I guess that's a sign the baby is growing! The only fun part about waking up at 4AM is realizing you get to sleep for another 3-4 hours! It's neat how your body naturally starts training you for what's ahead - a lot of sleep interruptions.

(This next part, it was written a few days ago on Saturday morning...)
I'm still not showing. I thought I was for a second there, but unless you catch me at 11PM you wouldn't be able to tell. But I think it's normal for a first-timer to not show for a while. Plus my uterus is tipped, so maybe that's hiding it. And I still can wear all my clothes, so no complaining here!

(Now back to today...)
So, now I am showing. Saturday night we were at the BYU game and I was all bundled up in my sweater and coat and my tummy started really hurting. I thought it was something I ate, but once I unzipped my coat (...and my pants) I felt so much better, baby just needed room. I thought it was just because it was late at night, but when I woke up on Sunday morning the bump was still there - and it's here to stay. It really just popped up over night!

We went to the doctor today for our 16 week check-up and all is well! Tanner got to play doctor and check for the heartbeat. I really love the Women's Clinic I go to. All the midwives are so kind and helpful.

Just 4 more weeks and we find out what the little babe is!!! Crazy. I can't believe I'm almost half-way done. I could do 5 more of these...(<--- that was also written on Saturday morning.) Yeah, we want 6 kids, but we'll just take it one by one. Tanner is already planning when to have the next! I tell him we'll just wait and see...

Most of you think it's a girl, I still think boy, but we'll see. Cast your vote if you haven't yet (see right side up top).

The strangest thing right now is my belly growing. I can feel my skin gently stretching (like when you eat waaaay too much). And I'm slowly growing out of my jeans. These feelings are so new for me and I have to remind myself, "I'm pregnant. I haven't overeaten, this is normal." It's a fun journey!

the bump
I posted the above picture on my Facebook page and I was surprised by a common response I received..."So CUTE!" If you are familiar with Energy Profiling, you will know that "Cute!" is a Type 1 word and I'm a Type 2 and Type 2 words are, "Beautiful" or "Elegant." So being called "Cute" and "Adorable" is very new to me. But it makes sense because it's a baby (which is obviously a very youthful and fresh movement) and my bump is round (a Type 1 shape) - it all represent the Type 1 movement, which apparently is very CUTE on me! Anyways, just a funny observation!

Overall, me and baby are doing GREAT!

Monday, November 14, 2011

A Hunger Halloween

This morning I watched a short segment on Good Morning America that premiered the upcoming movie The Hunger Games! I am soooo excited. I listened to the books last January and then Tanner got hooked on them on our trip to Europe. He would listen while I would chat with friends in Bulgarian, it was great for both of us.

The books are so good, you can't wait to get through them but then you're sad it's over. We been searching for a replacement ever since. We recently finished Matched and just started the sequel Crossed. We love to listen to books in bed!

Although, that series is fun to listen to it's nothing compared to Katniss. Seriously, if you haven't ready the books you NEED to. Man or woman. You will love them. I have to warn you though - don't read while eating. It's a little graphic. I would actually get woozy in the tummy while listening to it!!

Well, we tried to bring back the magic for Halloween. When we were trying to decide what to be Tanner had the brilliant idea to be Katniss Everdeen and Peeta Mellark! And although most people didn't know what we were without asking, we thought it was the best costume ever. And we won Most Creative at our Halloween Party.

I found these pictures online and made our costumes after them.

Peeta Mellark

Katniss Everdeen

And here we are!!

I love Halloween (for proof see here)! I love dressing up! I think we did a pretty good job this year!

Here are the guests from our Halloween Party, they all look great too!

What were your for Halloween?

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Giving Thanks

Some of you may remember my post from last November where we wrote 1,000 plus thankfuls together. It's been a family tradition for 15 years. This year we shared the tradition on my mom's blog here.

As you will learn in both posts, I have been doing this tradition for all 15 years - even when I was out of the country or away at college. So true to form, I got out the Brown Family journal to start writing - but I just wasn't feeling it. Every time I sat down to write I wasn't excited about this tradition anymore - well at least this year.

I thought, "What is wrong with me? Do I have nothing to be grateful for?" Of course I have 1,000 things - 1 million - billion things for which I am grateful, but I guess I just wanted to express it differently this year.

Thanks to Tanner, I have learned to let things go and not get so caught up about "how something should be done." Two years ago I would have probably forced myself to continue this tradition like it or not. But now I think, "Does this sound fun?" "Will this make my life simpler?" And it just wasn't jiving.

I think it is wonderful to have a fun tradition of expressing gratitude throughout November. I have seen some people who post what they are grateful for on Facebook everyday. So I was trying to think of another way I could show a little extra gratitude and appreciation this Thanksgiving Season and this idea came...

I have decided to write 1 thank you note to someone each day leading up to Thanksgiving. At first I thought, I should write 1,000, maybe 100 cards, but then I decided to keep it simple - I'm pregnant, remember?! I can do that. :)

So, starting yesterday and up until Thanksgiving I am writing a thank you card to whomever pops into my head just to express my gratitude and appreciation for them!

I love getting special notes at random, so I know it will be a lot of fun to share the appreciation!

Do you do anything during the month of November to show a little extra gratitude?

On Thanksgiving Day I try to make all my prayers just gratitude prayers, rather than ask for anything. That's kind of fun - it makes you think extra hard. Maybe I'll do that  little more this month too!

Share your ideas and then go add to the list here, I'll keep adding there too!

Happy Thanks Giving!

Monday, November 7, 2011

On the table this week. 11/7-11/13

I just got off the phone with a friend who was asking me about my diet and she asked me what I make for dinner. This is usually a hard question for me to answer - I get a brain fart and can't think of what we eat. We do eat. I just can't think anything on the menu when I get asked, so I thought I'd start posting my menus here to share with you!

I usually plan the week's meals on Sunday and go shopping on Monday. I try to stay within a $50-$60 weekly grocery budget. Planning ahead has really helped me stay within a budget and enjoy yummy meals. There's nothing worse than the clock nearing 6PM with no idea what to eat!

I also try to be realistic about how many days we will be home eating. Usually we eat out twice a week. And I go easy on myself if the plan changes. But most weeks I make all meals or at least 4 out of the 5.

This is what I create on Sundays (and I include the shopping list underneath the grid):

And here it the above menu (readable) with live links:

(I don't write in Breakfast, unless it's something special. I usually have Instant Oatmeal with these Blueberries, Almond Milk and Granola. If I'm in a hurry I'll have a rice cracker with PB and Honey.)

Monday: Lunch - Salad Bar at Whole Foods; Dinner - EAT OUT: Veggie Salad at Costa Vida

Tuesday: Lunch - EAT OUT with Company at Spencer's; Dinner - Meatless Stroganoff from the book E2 Diet

Wednesday: Lunch - PBJ and Salad; Dinner - These "Enchiladas" with refried beans, peppers, mushrooms and corn tortillas, and these Muffins

Thursday: Lunch - Leftovers; Dinner - Puffy Pancakes, with pure Maple Syrup, Organic Cage Free Eggs, Berries and Oranges (We like breakfast for dinner!)

Friday: Lunch - Tuna Salad and Salsa and Chips; Dinner - Sweet Vegetarian Chili and Sweet Potato Fries

Saturday: Lunch - I don't plan Saturday lunches; Dinner - EAT OUT

Sunday: Lunch - I don't plan Sunday lunches either; Dinner - Eat at the Brown's

Some extra treats I want and maybe will try: Pumpkin Bars, GF Cookies

So there you have it! Let me know what you think and share your recipes!!

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Meatless Tacos

Tacos have always been a favorite of mine. In fact, when we first got married we had tacos about once a week! I love a good crunch in my food and tacos deliver and I love the flavor.

More recently I have come up with a great Meatless Taco recipe and it is just as good as meat tacos.

That will be tomorrow's lunch!

So check it out...

(I made enough for 2-4 people so you will probably want to double it.)

1/2 onion
1 clove garlic
1-2 peppers (green, red, yellow)
any other miscellaneous veggies (I added carrots)
handful of cilantro chopped
1 can drained black beans
1/2 package Lawry's (my personal fav) Taco Seasoning
1/2 tomato
1 avocado for guacamole
1 head Romaine lettuce
hard shell tacos or soft corn tortillas (gluten free option instead of flour tortillas)

1. Dice all the veggies in your Chop Wizard (or spend a lot more time and energy and do it by hand - seriously, every kitchen needs a Chop Wizard).

2. Throw chopped veggies in lightly oil panned (I used my Misto again) and sautee for 3-4 minutes

3. Add black beans and taco sauce - cook on medium for 2-3 more minutes

4. Remove from heat and add cilantro and fresh tomatoes

5. Prepare Guacamole - 1 avocado, garlic powder, salt, pepper, cilantro, more fresh tomatoes

6. Shred lettuce

7. Prepare taco and enjoy!

Add chips and enjoy! 

It was a lovely meal! I even turned my second helping into a Taco Salad. Tanner's brother was over for dinner and enjoyed our meatless tacos too!

Give them a try and let me know what you think.

BTW - there was a grand total of 5 dishes for prep!!! Love it.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

A Yummy Vegetarian Dinner

We enjoyed a delicious Vegetarian dinner tonight.  The best part was that it was soooo easy. It took about 15 minutes total and I only used about 6 dishes. (Dish quantity is a huge factor for me when choosing what to make!)

So I thought I'd share -

Creamed Avocado and Lime Pasta with Quinoa (keen-wha) (gluten free) pasta. I've tried other GF pastas and Quinoa is the best! Most regular pastas are made with refined white flour, so going for another option is much healthier. Tanner even likes the quinoa pasta, it has a similar texture and taste. Your local grocery store should have it. (I know Macey's does.)

Took 5 seconds to whip up.

The avocado cream tastes very similar to Cafe Rio's house dressing. You wouldn't think to put it on pasta, but it is quite tasty and the side dish helps balance the flavor. I used Veganaise instead of Mayonaise. Veganaise is a wonderful vegan alternative to mayo. Follow Your Heart brand is my favorite. It's lower in fat and healthier for you because there are no animal products.

Then as a side dish we had baked Asparagus with Parmesan Cheese on top. Yummy! To make it lay parchment or wax paper on a cookie sheet and then after washing the Asparagus lay them in a row. They coat with oil. I use Grape Seed Oil whenever I am cooking with heat. Olive Oil doesn't have a high heat tolerance, so Grape Seed Oil is a better option. Most health food stores carry this.

And there's what's left of it!

I used to brush the oil on, but not anymore! I use my super cool Misto. You put in any oil you like and then pump and spray. It made the job a whole lot easier! Then top the Asparagus with Parmesan Cheese and cook at 425F for about 10 minutes.

Absolutely delish!

Last night I made these yummy GF Blueberry Muffins. So, I'll pass those along too.

Make it and let me know what you think. Enjoy!