7QT #4

31 January 2014

31 January 2014

I know I probably don't have enough steady readers to notice this, but I've been experimenting with different blog designs lately - as someone who codes ebooks for a living, I have a minimal knowledge of HTML so I've been messing around with a lot of different things. If this blog keeps looking different every time you click, that's probably why. Eventually I'm sure I'll stick to one... hopefully anyway...

I got a haircut this week!

I didn't manage to get a "before" shot because I was later than I wanted to be and I'm also bareelyy fitting into any coats that work in this weather so I can't move around very well in them once the coat is on, so after is all you get.
I got about 7" taken off and a lot more layers and bangs...it's a big change.

If you like reading blogs (probably you do since you're reading this) you should click on over to Caitlin's blog. She's a relatively newbie (newby?) blogger like me but let me assure you, she is hilarious and I am 100% looking forward to all she has to blog about, ever. Especially since she was rude enough to move away from me, 966.7 miles to be exact, andddd this is a way I get to peek into her more exciting life without being too stalker-ish.

If you're curious, yes I did calculate that mileage exactly.

Also here's a gratuitous picture of us together our freshman year of college:

please ignore our blurry friend Patrick on the right side of this photo

We're supposed to get a light dusting of snow here in Lincoln between now and noon, and then again up to maybe even 3 inches by tomorrow morning. I know everyone everywhere else in the country seems to hate snow but I am SOOO excited. It's nice to have spring and all but I do love me some winter precipitation.

Also this CollegeHumor video is hilariously accurate about the Southern reaction to winter (and surprisingly not full of profanity!):

David and I are getting closer and closer to picking out names for the little Gokie arriving in May. We have a "top contenders" list and a "maybe" list and a "yes we have to use these names" list. All of which aren't as long as I thought they'd be by this point, but whatever. 

And no, none of the lists fall under the "worst baby names ever" category, which apparently includes names such as Tragedy, Hitler, Messiah, Failure, and Allergy.

I guess the Super Bowl is this weekend, or something? I love college football, don't get me wrong, but I've never been a huge pro football plan. And somehow the Super Bowl always seems to sneak up on me. Especially now that David and I don't have access to TV (we don't even have bunny ears...), my knowledge has significantly decreased from what it was before, which was minimal.

I'm planning on making some delicious cheese dip to bring to a friend's house, camp out, and make everyone be quiet while the commercials come on. Including this one, which I'm sure my pregnancy hormones will force me to cry at in front of all my friends, even though I really don't want to.

 What is with me and posting all these videos lately? idk man, it's just really weird.

Less than 7 days until the Winter Olympics!

This whole not-having-TV thing is great, usually, because David and I are really good at Netflixing shows constantly. But the one time I'm really going to miss having just plain old ABC is during the Olympics. 

Luckily, one of our friends lives a 5-minute walk away from our house, so we're planning on hoofing it over there to watch our fellow talented Americans go ridiculously fast down tall things, and ridiculously fast in circles on tiny little blades, and sweep...ridiculously...fast...?? Should be grrrrreat.

Thanks to Jen as always for hosting the best link-up ever! :) 
Happy weekend--

For more Quick Takes, visit Conversion Diary!

Five Favorites #2 (Movies!)

29 January 2014

29 January 2014
I was going to write a post about movies, because I have lots of thoughts about them recently,  but I couldn't come up with a title. Typical.

So then I went through my Bloglovin' feed and had a stroke of inspiration, because it's Wednesday, reading Hallie's blog: make it into a Five Favorites post! So here goes.


The Fault In Our Stars trailer is officially out! And on the Youtube! Which you can watch with the internetz!

If you aren't an avid reader of teen fiction, or you don't have teenagers yourself, maybe you haven't heard of John Green and his amazing novels, including The Fault In Our Stars. TFIOS (way easier than typing out that title every time) was a NYTimes #1 bestseller, a Wall Street Journal #1 bestseller, earned starred reviews from practically everyone on earth, and has been translated into an enormous amount of languages. And now it's a movie! With Shailene Woodley and Ansel Elgort!

John Green's writing is refreshing and honest, and the movie looks like it's going to be just as great (if that's possible) as the novel. Also one time he tested the theory that he might in fact be an octopus and the results are hilarious.


David and I went to see Gimme Shelter last night with another couple, and I was immediately impressed and saddened that I hadn't heard more about this movie before we went!

It was at times heartwrenching, heart-warming, prolife, eye-opening, very real, and about as inspiring as a movie can get these days. And the best part? Based on a real-life woman's shelter called Several Sources Shelter.

Go see the movie if you get the chance -- you won't regret it.


I had no idea that the best-selling book Heaven Is For Real was going to be made into a movie -- I was behind the times, apparently. Now, I've never actually read it (always meant to, haven't gotten around to it) but the movie looks compelling.

It's refreshing just to have the opportunity to see movies that are openly religious included in mainstream media these days -- including Noah, Son of God, and these last two I've listed.

Now, disclaimer, I haven't done much reading into how legit these movies are, but nonetheless - they are about religion! and openly so! and it's awesome! (Please don't hate me.)


Movies like Endless Love (which I saw the trailer for last night) make me lose faith in humanity. I'm not even going to link you to the trailer because it looks so bad. Also the whole time the background music was so dark and creepy that I was convinced the main "love interest" was going to turn into a zombie or a serial killer or a vampire (immortal/endless)? It would have probably made a better movie that way.

Okay fine here watch it so you know what I mean:

But please don't go see it. Ugh. I shudder at the thought.


And last but not least, FINALLY a movie from the villain's perspective! I've never liked Angelina Jolie all that much but man does she look terrifying in this. Can't wait to hear/see more about this movie.

What have you seen and liked lately? I'm always looking for more movie suggestions. :)
Happy hump day!

January Schmanuary

28 January 2014

28 January 2014
David and I have been really remarkably busy for the end of what usually seems like a pretty down and easy-going month.

Perhaps in my head I'm comparing this now adult life to past school year lives, where the end of January meant maybe your first assignment was coming up on the horizon, but yikes - it is not the same for us both now! I've been working long days and extra hours to catch up on work deadlines that are quicklyyyy approaching and just a lot of things around the house to do.

This weekend was a little break from that, though. We took a walk at my favorite place, Pioneers Park, a big naturey wonderland situated on the edge of Lincoln.

I made the photo x-large so you can appreciate how amazing and beautiful it was
Although the wind was insane (somewhere around 50 mile gusts gets pretty overwhelming when you're standing in the middle of a huge clearing with no trees blocking it) it was worth the extra effort it's taking me to haul my ever-growing belly around just to get some fresh air.

Saturday night was Date Night (yes, capital letters on purpose) because we realized we hadn't been out to dinner for over 4 months. I mean, we'd gotten Raisin' Cane's (because it is delicious) and rented some RedBox-es but not like, dress up and plan ahead and have date night. It was very nice and much needed - we spent a lot of time arguing about baby names. Needless to say it was fun.

doesn't he look excited for date night??
Sunday night we spent working on the baby quilt! I'm planning a master post to show you all how I did it, because I'm attempting something more complicated than usual, but here's a little preview:

Please ignore the fact that my template for cutting my pieces out is a page from a Victoria's Secret magazine. It was the only scrap paper I could find on a quick look around our house.

Also, thank goodness for marrying someone with opposing strengths to your own: I often have great ideas that involve some sort of math and I couldn't get any of them done without David's help.

Keep warm if you're as cold as we are these days...a high of 3 seems a wrong use of the word "high."
Pax tecum---

7QT #3 [including baby bump photos!!!!]

24 January 2014

24 January 2014

I got you hooked with that subtitle didn't I? I've been practicing my art of subtitles (see practically every other post having something in parentheses behind it...I'm a woman obsessed) so I thought I'd just continue the streak.

Aaaaand here we go!

If you haven't yet heard of them, you should go vote for your favorite bliggity blogs in the annual Sheenazing Awards, hosted by Bonnie at A Knotted Life. It's a great way to pit amazing blog writers against each other in a fight to the death...or an awesome way to highlight the wonderful women who share their lives with readers on the interwebz. I haven't quite decided which yet.

Either way, bound to be a good time, right?

Baby bump!! 
I'm officially 23 weeks cooked as of this morning (or let's be real, last night probably around 11:00 p.m....teeheehee) and Baby G is finally making me look not-fat-but-actually-pregnant. 

lookee there, you can even still see my feet!

If you want to see multiples of that glorious hipstery-bump shot, follow me on Instagram. I love looking into peoples' lives...so you probably do too?

In other Baby G news, I'm amazed at how much the little one likes treating my bladder like one of these:

after I found this picture I clicked on the link for the item...
long story short, don't buy these because they are recalled due to "lack of balance."

and always riiiight when I've hit that "sort of dreaming, sort of awake" stage right before the Zzzzs set in for real. 

I mean, I love knowing the little girl/guy is in there. But it's not always so comfortable.

My lovely ex-roommate (that sounds morbid, she didn't die, she just moved away to be a FOCUS missionary) shared this glorious website with me this morning:

 She suggested Lazer Jax. 
I was thinking Axel Exton. 

How do you decide what letters are "hip" or "edgy"? who decides that sort of thing??? As a former English major I don't like discriminating letters against each other. Let's be fair, people.

(Also quick shoutout to her as one of the very few who probably actually read this blog -- her and my husband, that is! Hi Caitlin!!!!)

If you listen to Foster the People, who has one of the best coherent albums I've ever heard, or even if you don't, you should listen to their new single. It's been pretty much on repeat since I listened to it on Monday.

Plus it has cool mural-making in the video!

I'm slowly working on completing my baby registries, both from Target and Amazon, and I'm needing some baby item suggestions or recommendations. There are approximately 8 billion types of every little thing a baby needs, and I'm one of the world's most indecisive women. Anybody have some help for a soon-to-be-mama? I'd take anything you'll give me.

This weekend is going to involve a visit from the electrician for the baby's room, a shopping trip or two to Menards for more supplies (as does almost every weekend in the Gokie household!), and most importantly a trip to Hobby Lobby to get supplies for the baby quilt I'm planning!

It's going to look somewhat similar to this one but I'm going for a little more edgy (I've now used that word twice in the same post, what is happening to me) and gender-neutral color scheme than this one. I'll post something about it once I get it all pieced together...and if I'm feeling super ambitious I might even make some sort of tutorial. 

Peace out folks! 

For more Quick Takes, visit Conversion Diary!

Bandwagon-er (another post about embroidery)

21 January 2014

21 January 2014
Okay, so I'm totally guilty of being a bandwagon-jumper. Especially when it comes to crafty things. So, I'm jumping on the bandwagon that's been going around and have been doing some hand embroidery lately!

I've done embroidery in the past - I think I've owned a hoop for about 2-3 years, and I went through a phase in college where I embroidered rap lyrics onto fabric for my then-roommates. I think I did a Kanye West tweet at one point too.

Yes, I was the hippest college girl you know. Don't worry about it.

The other day I was reading blogs as I do in my free time -- no surprise there -- and saw Jenna's (now-infamous) embroidery post with very helpful vlogs and embroidery supply lists and stitch videos. I'd been looking for a craft that I could do easily for the baby's room that wasn't going to take me forever, and that wasn't knitting, because I will be honest with you and tell you that besides baby booties and scarves my knitting skills are extremely sub-par.


I decided to embroider a cute little giraffe for a frame in the baby's room. Unfortunately I didn't have the time or motivation to go to the store and get actual embroidery thread, so I just made do with the thread I have on hand, which is just regular sewing thread.

Here's the finished product!

Obviously I haven't bothered to iron him out yet, as you can tell by the severe crease down the middle and the clouds-that-aren't-clouds-but-are-really-wrinkles up near the top.

Because I didn't have embroidery thread, I did basically a double layer of stitching for every line I made on the little guy, which made it take twice as long but would have been wayyyy too faint otherwise.

I'm still debating whether or not to add a border around the whole thing once I find some matching frames to hang on the walls in the nursery. I'll probably revert to my home and buy some cheap-o ones like this from Target.

Now I need some help -- what goes well with a giraffe? I'm thinking I want a set of 4 total pieces, and I'd like one to be a good Scripture quote and the other maybe animals? or some other baby related thing? If you have some ideas shoot them my way, otherwise I'll resort to Pinterest research and hopefully come up with something good.

Until next time --

7 QT #2

17 January 2014

17 January 2014
This has been another busy week - not quite as crazy as the last one when it comes to work, but still crazy enough that I feel somewhat stressed - which is a little unusual for me when it comes to work. But the next couple weeks should slow down a little bit, so that's good news.

I don't know if anyone hasn't heard of Verily Magazine by now, but if you haven't I highly recommend adding them to your daily reading list. Verily seems to be the only magazine company out there that understands the modern woman, and they do a fantastic job of providing provoking topics and telling the truth about women today that I haven't found elsewhere. Their tagline is "Verily is a magazine less about who you should be, and more of who you are" -- which sums them up greatly.

I'm majorly hankering for a print subscription, but as my birthday's not til May I might have to wait until then and survive on their blog feed until then (a wonderful substitution, btw).

Because my dad instilled in us kids a deep love and appreciation for good, quality music, I have this burning need to share artists and bands that are truly fantastic whenever I run across them. Bear Attack! is my current obsession. I've been listening to them for about a year, but rather off-and-on until the other day when I played their (total of) 9 songs on repeat for an entire day. SO GOOD.

Bear Attack! was formed originally as a group of college kids for an assignment at a music school in LA, and has blossomed since then -- if you watch Pretty Little Liars (I don't), you might recognize The Backpack Song from the season finale of some year.

Give them a listen and maybe buy their music so they stick around?
One of the things I miss most about being in college is having a paper planner that I meticulously fill out, day-by-day, with everything I'm doing, have done, and need to do in the future. I spent more of my daydreaming time in class obsessing in my planners than I like to admit to normal non-planner-loving company.

That being said, how weird is it if I get a planner for this year? I miss my old Moleskine, but think that I might be wasting my time because what am I gonna write...went to work, upstairs...went to Target, again...etc. etc?

Oh well. I might just have to do it. LOOK HOW CUTE THEY ARE?
I'm drooling a little bit just looking at it

One of my sub-New Year's Resolutions is to get back into reading fiction. I miss having the academic discussion and rigor that being an English major gave me. I was basically forced to read 20-30 amazing fictional works every semester and I loved it...and now I miss it. (Huge nerd, I know.)

This year I'm starting with Kate Atkinson's Life After Life. I'm only about 50 pages in, but I love love love it so far. I think I miss reading a lot, but I also think that she's an author I'll be picking at the library more often.

Baby has been kicking me a lot this week - and I am falling more and more in love with it. There's nothing quite like feeling an actual physical touch as proof that there's another human being sharing your body, is there? It makes me smile just thinking about it. Kick away baby!!

yep that's 2,000 Names from the World's Great Literature.
English n-e-r-d, I told you.

David and I have also been looking through baby name books. Talk about overwhelming! My only thought: if we're having problems finding two names we like, how the heck do you move on when you have kid #2? and 3, 4, 5, etc?

Birth announcements - yay or nay? I love giving and getting mail, so on one hand I'm leaning towards doing them. I could use the design experience making my own (an area I'm trying to expand my skills in). But, I'm wondering if most moms plan on doing them and then are so busy/tired/distracted that they never get around to doing them after the baby's born.

What are your thoughts?

Happy weekend, everyone!
For more Quick Takes, visit Conversion Diary!

Baby's room progress

16 January 2014

16 January 2014
With my perfectionist husband and a really busy work schedule the next couple weeks, this could turn in to 10-12 post series. I'll try to keep it as minimal as possible, though, so not to bore myself (and you, perhaps, if you read this.)

The main gist of the project is to make the baby's room drywall and not plaster-and-lathe before the wee one comes, because our entire house is plaster-and-lathe and cracking in every which wall. Which makes for a nice visual representation of how old our house is but isn't very good for safety and, well, usefulness.

Last Friday, with the giant help of the in-laws and sister-in-law and her boyfriend, we did demo...and by that I mean they did demo while I safely stayed ensconced away from the enormous piles of dust that are created when you demo plaster.

(see beautiful taping/plastic jobby to your left...which I think managed to keep in about maybe 25% of the total dust produced. all the rest went literally EVERYWHERE in our house)


Because I am pregnant and not supposed to breathe in a whole lot of poisonous building materials, I got a pretty large break on Friday evening. Which meant I worked on our baby registry (ACK) and did some very useful Pinterest research on gender-neutral baby rooms. It will all pay off in the end, right?

Saturday morning we got started bright and early (the brightest and earliest I've been up in...well...longer than I'd like to admit, really). We then traipsed to our nearest Menards (save big money!) and spent an inordinate amount of money on...

you guessed it...
drywall and insulation. Best shopping trip ever!

Then we set to work installing the insulation and electrical stuff. Because I am not a bodybuilder or freakishly tall (or normally tall, according to my 6'1" husband), I wasn't much help until we (they) finished the ceiling and the technical stuff.


above two photos thanks to my F-I-L

We got this awesome denim-recycled insulation, which I 100% recommend if you're near remodeling/DIY-ing anything that needs insulation. It's a little pricey but you literally just tear it with your hands and stuff it in the cracks. Super simple, easy enough to figure out, and recycled. Aka awesome.

We then had to take a short break for a family party in Omaha, so didn't get going again til right after 6 a.m. Mass on Sunday morning. (Again, wayyyy too early for me. I looked like a zombie most of the day.)

Drywall was the next step - cutting, measuring, re-measuring, triple checking to make sure we didn't mess it up, and using about 1000 screws to get it to stay up on the walls. That's an exaggeration, but it was a lot of screws.

As a first-time drywall-er, I recommend two things: a big tub of screws, and cordless drills. So much better than trying to avoid tripping on electrical cords, and/or getting numerous paper cuts getting drywall screws out of those tiny boxes they put them in. You'll use more than you think you need, anyway, just go for the giant plastic tubs.

Currently the room looks a lot like the last photo -- although with every square inch covered with drywall (besides the electrical work areas that need to be left open for the electrician because we have scary wiring, even for an 85 year old house). So we are pretty excited!

Tonight I think we might start tackling the trim we're keeping, which is currently taking up every square inch of floor in our basement. Stripping and repainting and trying to save as much of it as we can is the plan...we'll see how it goes.

As soon as the electrical is done, we're moving on to mudding and sanding, new windows, and then finally PAINT! I'll keep y'all updated.


Bits and bobs

14 January 2014

14 January 2014
Isn't that a cute phrase? I'd never heard it before my lovely friend/roommate/maid of honor used it and then I was hooked. I say it to myself all the time so I figured, good title for a post that has (practically speaking) a whole lot of nothing in it.

I think I'm finally starting to understand the pregnancy brain symptom, or at least becoming more aware of it when it happens. Last night I dreamed that I was so hungry for a burger that I went to Wendy's, and a la Ron Swanson, told them to make me all the burgers they had at their store. Surprisingly enough even for dream-world, they agreed, but then they wouldn't all fit in my car.

It was very sad.

Other news:
a) I'm looking at my lovely new thread holder (Christmas present from D) and wanting to start a new embroidery project. Jenna has a new vlog series about hand embroidery, which has sparked my creative streak again. I'd really like to embroider something for the baby but I can't decide what.

Cute gender-neutral animals? A park scene? Something Catholic-y but simple enough that I could actually do it? I'll probably pick something and finish it halfway and find something better that I wish I would have chosen at the beginning...it's my crafting MO.

b) I'm taking a progesterone supplement twice weekly, which first of all tastes more disgusting than any other pill I've ever taken, and secondly I have this theory. I take the pill right before bed, along with my prenatal vitamin, and I think I have crazier/more detailed/easily memorable dreams on the nights that I take it, compared to the others. Any other progesterone-takers have experience with this?

c) Wondering how dangerous it ACTUALLY is for me to be painting the baby's room at 22-24 weeks? We're not quite at the paint stage yet (drywall is up, but yet to be mudded/sanded), but I've read every different opinion about the subject under the sun online. I'm thinking if it's ventilated enough, and I take enough breaks, it should be okay. Guess we'll find out? If I get too nervous, I could theoretically call my doctor.
Also, this is the color we chose for the room. Whaddya think?

d) I'm not satisfied with my current blog theme, and wondering if it's too ambitious to try to learn to design my own or if I need to keep searching the vast and seemingly unending free blogger themes online, most of which I absolutely hate.

I have a little experience with InDesign, Photoshop, Illustrator, etc., as well as some basic HTML/CSS coding, but I'm nervous. If this blog looks freaky in the next couple weeks/days, that'll be why.

Thanks for putting up with my crazy, y'all. Til next time.

BBC Telly -- Doctor Who

13 January 2014

13 January 2014
I am in love with BBC television, I'll come right out and say it to anyone who asks me. I thought I'd make a series listing all of the BBC shows I currently watch or am obsessed with, in case you're new to the whole British television programming and you'd like some recommendations.

Needless to say I have lots of opinions about all of these shows, but if I spent the time writing them all out with their pros and cons, I'd probably end up with a 500 page research book, and nobody wants to read that. At least not online.

First up, Doctor Who!

Doctor Who

Resources for the link-ready:

          Doctor Who Tumblr
          How to Watch Doctor Who
          Doctor Who IMDB

The Basics:

Doctor Who is a 50+ year running television show, aired on BBC (currently BBC One), about a time-traveling Time Lord (aka alien) who's over 900 years old. The Doctor (real name unknown) takes human companions with him on adventures in the TARDIS (his spaceship - an acronym for Time And Relative Dimension In Space), stopping tragedies, getting involved in history, and saving people across the universe, throughout time and space. 

Important Details:

The show originally aired in 1963, but ended in 1989 (apparently due to budget cuts and low ratings). It was rebooted in 2005 again for BBC, so there are two levels of Doctor Who -- what fans call "Classic Who" (the original episodes, 1963-1989), and "New Who" (2005-present). 

Main Character(s):

The Doctor, the previously mentioned alien, is the main character in the show (although he looks human - apparently humans are based on his race). He's played by many actors throughout the show's history, made possible by his ability to "regenerate" when mortally injured into a new body and new personality. He's brave, quirky, righteous morally, and very fun to be around. The current actor playing the Doctor is Peter Capaldi, although his episodes will start sometime in the fall. Other recent versions of the Doctor were played by Matt Smith, David Tennant, and Christopher Eccleston.

The other "main characters" are hard to define in Doctor Who, because the Doctor's companions come and go throughout the series. His current companion is Clara Oswald, played by Jenna Coleman, is a bossy teacher who doesn't mind telling the Doctor her opinions.

The Doctor and Clara Oswald (Peter Capaldi and Jenna Coleman)


Love, beliefs, loyalty, self-sacrifice, discovery, travel, and the importance of each and every life.

Fan Nicknames:


Favorite episodes:

I haven't watched any Classic Who, so I'm not at liberty to say which of those are worth the while or not worth the while. My top favorite episodes of New Who are as follows:

          Human Nature/The Family of Blood (2-part)
          The Eleventh Hour
          Vincent and the Doctor
          The Doctor's Wife (written by Neil Gaiman)
          Journey to the Centre of the TARDIS

Sorry I couldn't narrow the list down any more than that.

Vincent and the Doctor


Originally, Doctor Who was a children's program. Now, though, it is entertaining for all ages, really. There is no profanity (that I can remember, and I usually notice that sort of thing), very little overt sexuality, and plenty of good moral lessons throughout the Doctor's adventures. There is some violence, although never very explicitly or scarily depicted. 

Should I watch it?:

A big resounding YES! Even though I didn't start watching it until my sophomore year of college, it has become my hands-down favorite TV show, and I have a hard time believing it will ever be replaced by anything else. True, the beginning episode of New Who lack a big-budget appeal (some of the special effects are truly laughable), but it is still far and away better and more entertaining and GOOD than any other show I watch. 

If you end up watching Doctor Who, or already love it as much as I do, I'd love to read your opinions - leave me a comment!

Coming up in the BBC Telly series: Sherlock, Downton Abbey, and Broadchurch, to name a few!

7QT #1 (officially speaking, anyway)

10 January 2014

10 January 2014
This is my first official link up with Jen since I've started this blog so I'm nervous...but excited... welcome to anyone who clicks through to my blog to read here for the first time. No promises on entertaining content or anything like that, but I'll do my very best. 

an unabashed selfie -- if van gogh painted his own, I don't feel so bad.
This week has been crazy busy at work. Turns out all the projects I thought were due on the 15th of January were actually due January 1st, aka I missed the deadline even if I had them all done before my first day of work for the year. Oops. 

a picture of my crazy work desktop. stresses me out just looking at it.
I thought this would mean that my New Years "resolution" to blog on a regular basis would be thrown out the window for the week, but I actually did a pretty good job (in my opinion, anyway). I always forget that I work so much better under pressure...brings back memories of putting off 15+ page papers til a day or two before they were due in college. 

So, I worked about 75 hours so far this week, and have some more to do today after I finish my mid-morning breakfast-and-blogging break. YAY.

I had my first somewhat legitimate pregnancy "scare" this week - I tried putting my contacts in Wednesday morning and my left eye immediately turned red and burned like crazy. Went to the eye doctor. She looked at my eye every which way, and finally pronounced that there was nothing wrong with me. Awesome. She then proceeded to tell me that dryness of the eyes is common during pregnancy (I had no idea?) and that's probably what caused my pain.

I felt a little foolish walking out of the appointment because of course I had freaked out when I looked up scratches on your eye on WebMD and they said something about occular cysts and so I panicked.  I'm very glad that wasn't the case, but from now on when something weird happens I'm going to head to a pregnancy website, not WebMD, and THEN decide if I should panic or not.

I've been surviving on a (breakfast) diet of dry Frosted Flakes since I bought the family size at Target for $3.25 the other day. They are just SO good. Basically the equivalent of eating healthy sweet chips all day, every day. I don't think it necessarily qualifies as a pregnancy craving but I can't get enough of them.

Someone on my Facebook newsfeed shared the following two articles this week, which pretty accurately sum up my feelings towards studies conducted about pregnancy and babies and all that jazz. (Kendra @ Catholic All Year also shared the first article in her QT this week. Small internet world. I'm sharing again in case you missed it.)

Take Back Your Pregnancy

Reddit-er Understands Pregnancy

Maybe it's my first-time-mom-ness, but I'm just constantly overwhelmed with all these decisions I'm supposed to be making! Any advice for a newbie?

I got a Target gift card for Christmas, and now I'm faced with the impossible decision of what to spend it on. House things? Cute baby things? Maternity clothes? Their big beginning-of-the-year clearance (online) isn't helping me with the process. 

glad there was a picture to accurately portray my feelings when i googled "target addict"
And yes, I'm one of those who has a stereotypical addiction to Target. Don't judge me too harshly, please. 

David's parents are coming down this afternoon to help us start on the baby's room. Get excited for lots of pre-and-post reno pics, as well as probably another cry for help on picking a gender-neutral color that ISN'T yellow. 

Seagreen bluish? Purply-gray? I'm at a loss, guys. And I hate repainting (and wasting money), so any advice is welcome.
Have a great weekend!

For more Quick Takes, visit Conversion Diary!

Five Favorites #1

08 January 2014

08 January 2014
Hello all! Doing my first link-up with Hallie @ MoxieWife -- I'm very excited, to be honest!

1. The snow that's falling outside my window while I'm hard at work this morning:

Okay, because I don't have a camera and my iPhone can't capture snowflakes (why???), it doesn't look like it's snowing. But I promise you it is - big, beautiful flakes that are fluffy and piling up everywhere. It makes the frigid weather we endured the last couple days a little more worth it.

2. This album of kids' music that isn't really at all like normal kids music:

Paul Spring has a great acoustic feel, sings about things like Peter Pan, mermaids, and Sherlock Holmes, and isn't annoying/grating like most kids' music can be after awhile. I read this article on him on NPR and have been hooked ever since.  

3. My favorite product of pregnancy so far:

I'm a Burt's Bees chapstick addict, so when I found this at the magical land of Target the other day I had to snatch it up. It has been great for keeping me from awkwardly scratching my belly from itchy dry skin every hour or so, especially in public. (Not the prettiest picture of pregnancy, I know - thanks Burt's Bees for helping me avoid it!)

4. My new Camelbak Eddy water bottle:

David bought me this for Christmas - one has been on my wishlist for quite a while, and I LOVE it. It makes me actually drink water during the day, and the extra layer of insulation really does keep the water cooler than a single layer.

5. This cool photography project (All credit to Zed Nelson):

I'd love to do something similar when my baby finally gets here -- anyone else have experience with this sort of thing? 

Hope you're having a wonderful snow-filled or sunny Wednesday!

Pregnancy things

06 January 2014

06 January 2014
Since I've officially reached the halfway mark in my pregnancy, I've been doing a lot of reflecting on pregnancy, the little baby inside of me, and how my symptoms and feelings about pregnancy have changed since we found out. I'm always so curious to hear people's experiences with pregnancy, especially how it can change from one baby to the next, so I thought I'd write my own down so I can look back and (hopefully) remember how "difficult" my first was in comparison to all the rest.

I kinda doubt that's going to happen but a girl can dream, right?

The first couple months of my pregnancy were not at all awful. I was, and still am, really lucky and have been blessed with a worry-free pregnancy basically the whole time.

I didn't bother to take a pregnancy test until I was already about 8 weeks along, because my cycles are crazy long and irregular so I wasn't surprised that my period hadn't come yet. We weren't really trying for a pregnancy, so I had no reason to check for that reason as well. But I took a test sort of on a whim/feeling on October 11, and it came back positive.

Needless to say we were surprised/shocked/amazed/etc. -- but had no time to really process the info because we left the next day to visit my brother and go to a Husker away game! Since we hadn't told anyone we spent the entire trip trying to not talk about it when really it was the only thing we wanted to talk about.

Basically right after we took the test, I started having morning sickness - which for me, apparently, meant I felt nauseous around 11:00 a.m. every day for about half an hour, sometimes again if I stayed up late around midnight, but other than that was pretty easy. I didn't want to eat anything for about 6 weeks solid, which meant I lost about 6-7 pounds total. I think I counted that I only actually upchucked 6 times, which was good because I HATE throwing up. With a passion. Before pregnancy it had been about 12 years since I'd last vomited, so I was really not looking forward to it. Thank the Lord it wasn't too bad.

My first cravings were for Arby's, Jimmy John's subs (#1 with BBQ chips) and for sour gummy worms, which I had never really liked before. I think I made David make me pancakes one night pretty late, but other than that I didn't crave anything too crazy.


I slept a TON during the first trimester. Luckily I work from home, so sneaking in naps and sleeping late wasn't an issue - I just worked later in the day. But every day I was amazed at how easily I could fall asleep, how long I could sleep for, and how many naps I needed to stay sane.

Now that I'm past the first trimester and well into my second, I can totally understand why they say the second trimester is the best. I have way more energy, I eat anything and pretty much everything in sight, and I'm just in a better mood overall. According to the husband, I'm much more prone to mood swings, and I do cry a lot easier, but that's not too unusual for me. I am having some back pain now that my belly's starting to come in, but it's certainly bearable.

I am getting more and more excited to meet the little guy or girl that's living inside of me! We're starting work on the baby's room this weekend, which means taking out the plaster/lathe walls, drywalling the room, painting, and hopefully fixing the door frame if we can figure it out. I'll take some pictures to document the before/after! Color suggestions for a gender-neutral room? I'm leaning toward a gray/blue that's not too dark, but I'm not set on that yet.


2013 in 13

03 January 2014

03 January 2014
Since this bloggy-thing is relatively new to me, I figured I should start out linking up with one of my favorite bloggers, Dwija, who I've been reading for a long time and give y'all a summary of my last year. That way, you'll win, I'll win, we all win.

Unfortunately I got a new computer in the last couple months AND got a new phone AND lost a lot of my old photos, so I'm going to hope Instagram can pull through for me and help me recap 2013 in a somewhat organized way.


A selfie I took before heading out to see one of my former roommates' art show as part of her graduation requirements. I stole most of the outfit from a then-current roommate, so I wanted to document it. [I told you the whole Instagram reliance thing wasn't going to be all that great.]


David and I went on Engaged Encounter - what a great weekend full of laughter and a lot of learning.


I didn't do anything too crazy for my last spring break of college, besides "borrowing" a classroom in one of the buildings and having some fun with David and a screen projector. #easilyamused


David got his wisdom teeth out. This photo is immediately post-op, where he repeatedly woke up and couldn't remember where he was or what had happened. He was convinced for 2 hours that they tricked him and didn't actually take his teeth out since he couldn't feel them. Silly boy - needless to say, it was hilarious.


May of 2013 was a big one. I graduated from college (hooray!), ran my second half-marathon (not so yay - knee pain galore), and then this photo: David and I closed on our house. This is the view out the front door - isn't she cute?


Although this isn't one of our fancy wedding pictures, this is one of my favorites from the best day of my life so far - my and David's wedding day! We got married on the 29th and this is a shot of the beautiful ring he designed for me. 


In July David and I were in Mexico on our honeymoon. It was the perfect week of relaxing after a stressful couple of weeks. This is us and the ocean - basically the story of our entire trip. I'd go back in an instant.


One of a few times we went golfing in August. We had a great end to the summer and I started working from home that month - but there aren't many pics that sum that up, so I went with [another] selfie. 


This isn't necessarily a noteworthy picture but it's a good summary of September. I did a lot of reading on our front porch, wrote some short stories, and started my blanket that was supposed to be a Christmas present...which still isn't finished. Whoops.


Easily the best part of October was traveling to see a Husker game (my first away game!) and visiting my brother at school. We had a great weekend - multiplied by the fact that we found out we were expecting right before we left!


David and I worked on and completed a lot of home-improvement projects in November, including raking the giant pile of leaves in our front yard not once but twice! November also included finishing morning sickness (thank the Lord) and the beginning of a baby bump for me -- almost visible in this picture.


Hands down, the best part of December was my 18-week ultrasound we had on Christmas Eve. Although I don't have my digital pics uploaded from it yet, this baby outfit (a gift for Christmas) summarizes how excited we are for the baby - and how beautiful it was to see the ultrasound! 

Hopefully you've enjoyed a summary of my year. It was one of the most eventful I think we'll ever have. Can't wait to see what my post looks like next year!


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