I’m a nesting machine!

Becoming pregnant has really changed me as a person, and in good ways.

Even though I am tired, sore, and busy, I’m the most productive I have ever been… all because I’m nesting to prepare for baby! This is both good and bad. It’s good because I am getting so much done and accomplished before our baby’s arrival. It’s bad because I rarely take the time to relax, and when I am taking the rare time to relax with a book or a movie, a million things are running through my head that I need to accomplish. Add this to the fact that I have a career, and you have one crazy lady on your hands who is full of anxiety. I really should try and get some relaxing done before we have a newborn though, huh…

But I digress. I’m quite happy with what we’ve been doing here in the Cervantes household. I have felt this strong need to get as many house projects done as possible before Caleb makes his big debut. There are SO many things we want to do the house, and my goal lately has been finding ways to get as many done as possible before he’s born because I foresee us not having the energy, time, or money when he first arrives and I’m out on maternity leave. I am trying my best every week to make our budget work so that we have a bit of money left each month or week to do something else to the house. While our ultimate dream is a newly remodeled kitchen and new flooring on our whole bottom floor to get rid of the old and raggedy carpeting, these goals are not financially attainable at the moment. It may be years before we can do these two things. However, we have done quite a bit of smaller, more affordable projects so far with a few more in mind before the big day.


Light in front foyer before and after. Loving my new mason jar looking lights. We’ll be replacing the kitchen light with the exact same one and the dining room light with the same one but it has 8 jars.

I’ve also been nesting in other ways by learning to be more productive around the house. I find myself cleaning and tidying up on days off and obsessively making sure things are put away. I hate seeing any sort of mess now, and I’m trying to be super organized. I’ve been cooking every weekend in my crockpots (yes, I have two now – thanks, Mom!), and doing dishes like it’s my job. I used to save the dishes for Jerry because they’re gross – haha, sorry, Jer! So, I’ve been trying to learn how to cook and be better at getting things done around the house. I’m really coming into my role as a wife and now a mother (at least I think so!). I’m sure Jerry appreciates it too, and while I still don’t love cooking, I’ve been quite proud of all the meals I’ve made thus far!

I’ve become very interested and invested in our finances. Though we don’t have a lot of extra money to play around with and we live on a fairly strict budget, we try our absolute best to put at least a little bit of money into savings every week. This is for my maternity leave and other emergencies that may arise. Even if it’s only $10 or $20 on some weeks, it’s something! A little bit goes a long way, they say. I’ve also been monitoring our retirement funds on a near weekly basis. Yes, I’m a little obsessed, and yes, I’m only 25, but I’m a planner. Lastly, I’ve been trying hard to get our debts paid down. Most of our debts are of the normal variety: mortgage, car loans, and student loans, but we do have a Lowes bill courtesy of our leaking fridge that needed to be replaced. We have 18 months interest free financing on that, but we are trying to pay it off even quicker, if possible. We also pay a smidge extra on our mortgage each month in hopes that it will be paid off before 30 years.

Speaking of money… I’ve also started couponing! When I got my hours cut at work, I immediately texted my sister-in-law and told her we needed to start. It’s something we’d been thinking about for awhile so we finally dived in. I am not hardcore by any means, but I try to buy the Sunday paper most weeks so I can get the Sunday coupons and the ads. Then I meticulously go through the ads with my coupons and match up the sales. I also follow a lot of couponers on Facebook, though a lot of the deals they post are really labor intensive and confusing… I’m just a newbie. I’ve been able to save on quite a few items though, and have started mini stockpiles on things when I can get a good deal on them. I’m pretty sure we are set on laundry detergent, shampoo and conditioner (for both Jerry and I), and razor refills for him for a few years – ha!


I paid $3.00 TOTAL for these six Pantene shampoos and conditioners.

Lastly, I have been preparing like crazy for little Caleb himself, the star of this show! I’ve been doing my best to make sure we will have everything he needs, and have already washed and sorted his clothes by size. I also have a small stock pile of diapers and wipes going, courtesy of couponing.


Baby laundry! Is there anything cuter?

Now we wait for our guy to get here, though hopefully not too soon. We still have lots to do around the house, and little man has lots of growing to do before he comes. For now, I’m enjoying my new roles and nesting!

Bumpdate: 27 Weeks


Today I am 27 weeks! The baby should be about 14.5 inches and weigh in at around 2 pounds!

I just got back from the hospital so it’s been a very scary morning. I’ve had back pain for WEEKS, but yesterday it suddenly got intense and has been accompanied by lower abdominal pain. I called the doctor’s office just to be safe and was hoping for them to either say “oh, it’s fine, no worries,” or maybe even, “okay, just come in to double check,” so imagine my surprise and terror when they said they wanted me to go to the hospital for monitoring. We were there from about 10-11:30 and I was hooked up the whole time to something that was monitoring the baby’s heartbeat. I was seen (and asked the same questions) by a nurse, a PA student, a resident physician, and the attending physician who works at my office and who I’ve seen before. I also got an exam which was no fun… no worries though… still closed up and the baby is safe and sound. His heartrate was fine. Mine was a little high at first, but they think it was just from nerves. The verdict is just round ligament pain, they think. So, that’s a huge relief. When they told me I needed to go to the hospital, I burst into tears as soon as I hung up. I kept imagining they were going to tell me he needed to come out today and I was going to have this tiny little 2 pound preemie. Thank God that all is well! On to the rest of the update….

My 26 week appointment went pretty well last week, although the doctor was not happy that I had gained 8 pounds in a month. To be honest, neither am I. I know I have gained a bit too much and have been trying to slow it down, but as I told her, my body is used to running and doing intense exercise. Right now, I am not capable of much more than walks. I am too tired and dealing with too much back pain to do anything else but walk. She was glad that I am walking, but also suggested cutting back on my sugar and carb intake. Not going to lie, that has been hard because I could live off of sweets and pasta, but I am making an effort to make healthier choices but still indulge at times. This weekend, I made greens and beans with sausage in the crockpot, and turkey chili in my other crockpot, after looking up low carb meals on Pinterest. Her concern is just that he will grow to be large and that his delivery will be difficult. At my appointment, I was 26 weeks and 1 day, and he was measuring at 27 weeks. She said this is normal, but it makes me wonder if he will either come a few days early or be large. As long as he is healthy, I’ll be happy. I had my glucose testing done, and haven’t heard anything yet, so fingers crossed that means I don’t have gestational diabetes!

Speaking of exercise, my goal was to talk three times over the week and I managed only two walks. I was planning on my third walk yesterday, but got hit with my most intense back pain to date while doing dishes. While I know walking is good for me, I weighed my options and decided that resting my body was more important since I was dealing with a lot of pain. Other than that, I really do feel pretty good and feel that I have been blessed with a fairly good pregnancy, aside from the migraines I had and the two weeks of bleeding (threatened miscarriage) in the first trimester. I am setting my goal for three walks again this week and hoping my pain subsides enough to get this done.

Caleb’s movements have become notably stronger, more frequent, and more intense this week which I am loving. Jerry got a good double kick last week and immediately ripped his hand away and shrieked “Ahh! That was scary! Feels like an alien inside of you! Both feet!” Ha – if only he could feel it from the inside like I do. He cracks me up.

Lots more baby laundry has been done, sorted, and put away in his dresser. This all seems so real now! I am so excited to see his face and have him here with me, but some days I get completely terrified, thinking, “am I ready for this?” I have so many questions about raising a baby but I suppose we will learn as we go along, right? His dresser has been moved into his room, so that was exciting! Next up will be his crib. The last pieces of furniture for his room will be a gliding chair and book shelf, but we are hoping to get those for his shower, and if not, then buy them with gift cards, so there will be a wait on those. The crib still needs to be put together, but hopefully in the next week or two!


My cravings are still for the two main things I’ve been craving for months and months: sausage biscuit breakfast sandwiches and Ovaltine. This has been my breakfast every single day for months now… yum. I’m not usually a big milk drinker, but I do love me some Ovaltine, and it’s good calcium for me and the little guy.

I’ve got my 28 week appointment next week… they are every two weeks now HOLY CRAP!

So my question for you mommas this week is about baby clothes. Now that I am sorting and prepping his clothes, I am debating big time on his going home outfit. I am torn between two. Anyway, he’s got about 4-5 newborn outfits but quite a lot of 0-3 months. I held off on a lot of the newborn stuff because of course we don’t know how large he will be when born. How long did your baby wear newborn size, and how long were they in 0-3 months? Thank you in advance!

Blogger identity crisis!

You guys… I am in the midst of a huge blogger identity crisis. I’m asking for some feedback and advice below.

When I started this blog over five years ago (!!!), it was solely a book blog, and it remained that way for over four years. Then this past January, I was feeling slightly burnt out on the reviewing front so I made some big changes to the blog. While I still enjoy reviewing books, my life is nothing like it was when I started this blog. Back in 2009, I was a college student living at home with my parents, working part time. I spent almost all of my free time reading because at that point, I hadn’t gotten into fitness yet or anything. But life has changed drastically for me. Now I’m married, I have a career, I own a home, and I have a baby on the way. Prior to this pregnancy, I spent a lot of time working out and running as well, which I plan on picking back up again after the birth. All this said, I don’t have quite as much time to read and review as I used to. I also have a lot of other huge things going on in my life that I feel like writing about and documenting. Also, I just plain old love to write, and book reviewing doesn’t let me get as creative as I like to be.

Don’t misunderstand me though; books are still and always will be my biggest passion and hobby. I still spend as much time as possible reading, but my numbers are way down from when I was a college kid with basically no responsibility. I also still enjoy reviewing books because I love to go back and remember my feelings about certain books years down the line.

That said, I do still like to post book reviews and other bookish things on this blog from time to time when I can, BUT this blog has morphed, changed, and grown a lot with me. I plan on always posting book reviews, but I only get around to maybe two or three a month these days. I post more personal things now, and this blog has kind of grown and evolved to be a general lifestyle/personal blog for me. It has included and will continue to include posts on: marriage, pregnancy, motherhood, home ownership, fitness and weight loss, general life updates, AND books. It’s kind of gotten to be a lifestyle blog about all the things in my life, which still include books, but also include a lot of other things too. I feel more free now with what I can write, and less backed into a corner as I am officially declaring myself as no longer a book blogger but just a blogger who writes about any and everything.

So since my blog has changed and morphed, I’ve been wondering about my blog name and design: Steph The Bookworm. I am and always have been a bookworm, so I don’t think this is inaccurate, but does it pigeonhole my blog too much? Does it give off a vibe that this blog is solely a book blog? Does the bookish design imply that too? I love my blog design, and I’ve been known as Steph The Bookworm online for over five years. It’s kind of become my identity so I don’t necessarily want to change it. Not to mention, this blog design cost me a pretty penny. I have no idea what I would even call my blog if I decided to go that route and rebrand but maybe I need to. I really don’t know what to do.

So I have some questions for you, my readers:

  • Do you think I should change my blog name?
  • Do you think I should change my blog design?
  • Do you like the way my blog has evolved, or do you miss it being about all books?
  • Do you prefer the personal / life posts, or the book posts?
  • Do you think blogs need to be “niche” blogs or are general blogs okay?

Ultimately, I’m going to keep on doing what I’m doing with the variety of posts, but I feel weird not having a “niche” blog and I worry about my name and design. I like having the creative freedom I’ve given myself since stepping away from the book blogosphere a bit. Sometimes I miss being exclusively a book blogger, and I feel like I don’t really fit in with that community anymore since my blog has veered into other directions, but at the same time, I’ve grown and changed, and my blog has needed to do some of that as well. One thing I plan on doing is adding some more pages to the top to include things like “Our Love Story,” “Caleb” and “Fitness.” So maybe if I keep the name and design but expand on some of my tabs, that could help? Maybe not? Maybe keep the name but update the layout and tagline? I’m so confused. I’d love to have some of your input!

Also, I’m always looking for new personal blogs to read. There are a handful of blogs that I have found and love, but if you have any favorites, please let me know since I’m newer to the whole personal blog thing!

Home improvements and feeling productive!

This past weekend was the opposite of relaxing, but it was so productive that I almost didn’t mind! I LOVE relaxing weekends that include no plans but reading, watching movies, and sleeping, but those are few and far between for me since I work Saturday mornings then usually have a lot of other things to accomplish before the work week starts again. Most weekends I can fit in at least a little bit of relaxing, but this weekend was go, go, go and I didn’t take a single nap… a rarity for this pregnant lady.

The biggest thing accomplished this weekend was that the baby’s nursery got painted! Woohoo! Since I’m pregnant, I decided to steer clear of the paint and its fumes, so my mom painted the walls and Jerry painted the baseboards. This room kind of needed an overhaul. The hardwood floors were scratched and stained, so we got a carpet installed a few weeks ago. It also had no lighting, so we got a ceiling fan/light installed as well. The last step was painting, and now that it’s finally done, we can begin moving his furniture in and setting up! We went with a light gray color, because it’s part of his nursery theme, which I will reveal at a later date with pictures. :) While they were painting, I busied myself with other things around the house, like cleaning and attempting to re-organize our kitchen a bit. We love our house, but we HATE our kitchen. It is too small for us… not to mention it looks like it came straight from the 1970’s. At any rate, I moved some things around and declared once and for all to stop using the table as storage! We generally eat in the dining room, and rarely at our kitchen table, so it’s been used to store crap for awhile now. I decided to clear it all off and add a centerpiece to try and motivate us to stop.


(L: The nursery with its new paint, new carpeting, and new ceiling fan. R: The clean kitchen table!)

I also cooked TWO meals on Sunday! I am NOT a cook at all, but I’ve been cooking dinners in the Crockpot over the last few weekends so I can try to learn before the baby comes. It makes me feel like a better wife too. So I cooked chicken chili for dinner in my Crockpot, then borrowed my mother’s Crockpot and made chicken and stuffing at the same time to bring to work for lunches and such this week. It worked out pretty well. I was feeling like Suzy Homemaker over here.


I got to have a little bit of fun too, this weekend. As you may recall, last week Jerry and I celebrated our first anniversary. As part of his gift to me, Jerry decided to work overtime and then give me that extra money to go shopping with. To no one’s surprise, I chose to go shopping for primitives! I LOVE primitive and country decor… I’m obsessed with it, in fact. Before we had a mortgage and therefore had extra money, we were hitting up craft and antique co-ops on a weekly basis for a couple of months there. But alas… we are now responsible, mortgage-paying adults and I have not been prim pickin’ lately, so this weekend was it! I picked out this adorable red hall table with heart cut outs on the side, most of the decorations that are on it, and a few other decorations that are elsewhere in the house. I do consider this to be productive because ya know… I love beautifying my home! My hubby is the best and sweetest, and this totally made my week!


We’ve got quite a few more house projects to complete, hopefully before the baby arrives, but ya know… money. We kind of have to do a little bit at a time and are taking baby steps to fixing up our house just the way we want it, but it is SO rewarding to get things done and make it our own. Simple things like decorating the house and painting a room really improve the look of our home, and I am so proud with every single thing we accomplish. We’ve gotten quite a lot done already since moving in, but as it is with older houses (ours was built in 1961), as soon as one project is done, there are a million more waiting in the wings. So far, the major home improvement projects we’ve done include: a lot of painting, a lot of wallpaper peeling, replacing a toilet, fridge, and dishwasher, completing a small bathroom makeover, installing two ceiling fans/lights, hot water heater repair, bathroom tub plumbing repair, and carpeting the nursery. There is so much left to do, but we are careful to save up our money and do only what we can afford at the time. It sure would be nice to win the lottery so we could remodel the entire kitchen (our biggest dream!) and re-carpet the entire downstairs floor, but these are two big projects that will have to wait many years. Our more attainable goals for the house before the baby arrives in January include:

  • Getting two more ceiling fan/lights installed (in our bedroom and the spare bedroom).
  • Replacing three light fixtures with more modern ones (front foyer, kitchen, and dining room. Good news – our front foyer light has been purchased and is getting installed on Thursday!).
  • Completing the crown molding in the upstairs bathroom and touch up the paint job in there. My dad started the molding this past weekend and will be finishing this upcoming weekend, we hope! This will complete the mini bathroom makeover we did, which I will share soon! We did a few things in there to remodel a bit that weren’t TOO expensive. A full remodel will have to come later.
  • Replacing the downstairs toilet. We just replaced the upstairs toilet because it kept running after flushing, and lo and behold, the other toilet is now doing the same exact thing. Go figure.
  • Replacing the mailbox. Ours is a sad sight.
  • Replacing the doorbell. Ours no longer works.
  • Finish cleaning out the garage so I can park my Jeep in there in the winter so the baby won’t have to be out in the snow!

So I think these goals are pretty attainable if we’re smart with our finances over the next few months. I love updating the house… it gives me a certain sense of pride that comes only with being a homeowner! Things like new toilets and lights never crossed my mind as exciting… until now! Funny how life changes as you grow older and more responsible. My book money has now become my house project money! Like I said, we have a few expensive projects that will have to come MUCH later (particularly an entire kitchen remodel and overhaul), but these are some things we can do for now that will spruce things up!

"Mom, what the flip is going on? Will the chaos never end?"

“Mom, what the flip is going on? Will the chaos never end?”

Bumpdate: 26 Weeks


I am 26 weeks today! Our guy should now be about 14 inches and just under two pounds!

First, I want to say thanks for all of your baby item suggestions last week! Some of the items I already had on my registry, so I’m glad to hear so many of you love them, like the Boppy! Some of the items you suggested I hadn’t even thought about and promptly added to the registry. The baby shower invites went out yesterday and I am so looking forward to November 16th!

I’ve been feeling pretty good lately! Just the same old back pain and fatigue, but now my heartburn is getting worse. I’ve been taking Tums every night. The heartburn is annoying and is causing my mouth to always be dry so I feel like I can never get enough to drink, but it’s not painful, just uncomfortable. Other than that, I feel a-okay!

I had two different co-workers tell me yesterday that I finally look pregnant. This makes me laugh. I explain to them that when I’m wearing maternity clothes, the bump is pretty well hidden. Yesterday’s shirt was also maternity, but made out of a kind of clingy material. I tell them that when I’m wearing a regular shirt (like I do in my bumpdate pictures!) my belly looks HUGE but they don’t believe me – haha!

I set a goal of taking three walks last week and only took two. I’m setting my goal for three again this week. I already20141012_193257 did my first one this morning. My back was hurting on the walk today, but I keep pushing on!

The baby’s nursery has finally been painted! The carpeting and light were installed awhile back, and this was the last step to preparing the room. Now we can finally start moving in his furniture and decorating, which we’re shooting for this weekend! I can’t even wait, OMG. The walls are a light gray and I LOVE IT! Thanks to my momma for all her help with it this weekend! I’m going to start washing his itty bitty clothes now and sorting them into his dresser. This is probably the first time I’ve been excited about doing laundry!

My mom and I went to this big annual Ronald McDonald House garage sale last week, and yes, we got a few more things for the baby. We got some hooded bath towels, bassinet sheets, stuffed animals for his nursery that match his theme (can’t wait to show you guys when it’s done!), a knitted blanket that matches his nursery colors, and a carseat cover. Great deals on all of these – love it! On Friday, I also had a super thrilling night out with two of my best girlfriends, Taylor and Katie, where we went to dinner then Target to get diapers and diaper cream because I had coupons that were expiring. We actually had a fun time and I am so grateful to have friends like them… friends who will go diaper shopping with you on a Friday night. I will totally remember this when they are pregnant themselves! One of the girls lived about an hour away for awhile and we weren’t in touch very much while she was gone, but ever since she moved back (I think it was right before my wedding?), it’s been like old times with us and I am so happy about that! Us three girls were inseparable growing up and I love having our little gang back together again. She even gave me diaper cream advice since she used to work in a daycare… thanks, Katie! :) These are lifelong friends and Caleb will have some great aunties! Also have to shout out to Taylor who is my maid of honor / bff / soul sister for life and Sheena, my sister-in-law who is more like a sister. Yay for aunts! I love being an aunt.

Would you all believe me if I said I can still lay on my stomach? Now, granted, I’ve always been a side sleeper, so I am sleeping on my side 99% of the time, but occasionally I find myself on my stomach or back and baby boy does not seem to like either since I get a good kick-kick-kick from it. In fact, I lay on my back for a few minutes every night and every morning so I can feel him moving. Other than that, I’m on my side though. I’m probably able to lay on my stomach still since I used to be fat and am used to having a belly from then – ha!

Tomorrow is my 26 week appointment, and on Thursday I am going to the lab to get my gluocla testing done. Wish me luck with that… I hope it doesn’t taste too nasty! More importantly, I hope I don’t have gestational diabetes. Tomorrow is my last monthly appointment and they’ll be switching to every two weeks from here on out. That is crazy to me… holy cow. Baby boy will be here in just over three months… we can’t wait to his sweet face!

Question for moms… how long did your baby wear size one diapers? Size two diapers? I’ve been stocking up and want to know how many of each size I may need! Any brands to avoid?

Review: The Harm in Asking by Sara Barron

Title: The Harm in Asking: My Clumsy Encounters With the Human Raceharm
Author: Sara Barron
Genre/Audience: Memoir, humor, adult
Publication: Three Rivers Press, 2014
Source: For review

The Harm in Asking is an odd, bizarre, and pretty funny book of anecdotes and stories about author Sara Barron’s strange life. I’m a big fan of memoirs and quirky people, so this book fit the bill quite nicely! I’m a bit quirky myself and could find myself relating to her in strange ways.

The stories range from her childhood up to the present, and cover a huge variety of topics, some funnier than others. The topics include things like roommates, dating, college, and work, amongst many other things. I definitely found some funny moments that caught me chuckling or smiling. I also found some moments where I was kind of saying “wtf?!” Some of her stories are just downright bizarre, I have to admit, and not quite as funny. I didn’t find anything in here to be laugh-out-loud funny, but as I said, I did find quite a bit of humor in reading this. I definitely liked her casual tone; it makes you feel like you’re sitting and listening to an old friend.

All in all, I’d say this was an enjoyable read, but not a favorite nor one of the funniest books I’ve ever read. It was funny enough though, and I would definitely read her writing again.

My Rating: 3/5

Our anniversary weekend!


Jerry and I had a really nice anniversary weekend together to celebrate our first wedding anniversary which was on Sunday! Typically, I work Saturday mornings, but I took the day off so we could finally have a whole weekend together. It’s tough with him working nights during the week and me working days. We don’t get a whole lot of time together, so this was something we had really been looking forward to.

I realized that things don’t always go according to plan, and that’s okay. Ever since our honeymoon cruise last year in which we had the absolute time of our lives, we had planned on taking an anniversary cruise trip. I requested the time off from work and we were making plans. Then Baby Caleb came along and we decided that the money we had saved would be better spent on our baby and my maternity leave come January… or whenever he decides to be born. Anniversary downgrade number one! So then we decided a little weekend getaway to a bed and breakfast was in order. Then my hours got cut at work due to Obamacare and ya know… goodbye to a good chunk of money every month. Anniversary downgrade number two! So it ended up being a low-key anniversary, but we spent a lot of time together and enjoyed each other’s company, and that’s what it’s really all about, so no complaints here… okay, maybe a few minor gripes, but it’s okay! ;)

So Saturday started with us going to a local bakery. Jerry saw some cinnamon rolls posted on their Facebook page so we got him one of those for breakfast and picked out dessert for that night (a cannoli cake… yum). After that, we ended up doing our baby registry at Target. Not super romantic, but we had a lot of fun picking things out for the baby. After that, we went out to lunch to a barbecue place called 58 Main Street. We had been there once before and I had this to-die-for pulled pork macaroni and cheese. We had a coupon so we went there again and it was delicious again. We came home and relaxed for a bit. I made some chicken and stuffing in the crockpot for dinner (cooking more is part of my mission to be a better wife), and watched Friday the 13th Part 2. We love horror movies. It was one of the first things we discovered we had in common (aside from the massive weight loss thing), so it was fitting for us! We also exchanged our gifts. Jerry didn’t want to wait any longer. We went really small this year because ya know… baby coming! I got him some new sweatpants which he’d been wanting, and he got me an owl scented wax plug in that I’d been wanting; I love it!


Sunday was the big day… woohoo! We had breakfast with the family at Carmines, one of our favorite restaurants. We then had to run a couple of errands which included Target to pick up our free registry gift that they forgot to give us and to add a few more things to the registry, the mall to pick up the cookie cake I surprise ordered for Jerry at Great American Cookie, BJs to get a chicken, and the gas station to get coffee and the Sunday paper for coupons. Not a thrilling morning, but it was nice to just be in each other’s company.


We <3 cookie cake and served it at our rehearsal dinner last year so this was only fitting!

I ended up getting really bad pregnancy back pain during all that running around, so when we got home, I ended up taking a nap. When I woke up, I felt much better and it was time for dinner. So last year, we got married on 10/5/13 at this place called Rick’s Prime Rib House. The year before the wedding, we had already booked it, so we also went there for our “-1″ anniversary on 10/5/12. We of course planned to go back again this year, but apparently they’re closed on Sundays! So were our next two choices, two of our favorite Italian restaurants… bummer. We ended up finding an Italian restaurant called Fazool’s that was open and that we had a coupon for. We were very pleasantly surprised and really enjoyed our meal… I had alfredo because it’s my favorite. So dang good. The restaurant even sits on a canal so we had a water view while dining. We’ll definitely go back there. I even rocked my new maternity dress that I bought for the occasion because I thought it would be fun to get dressed up. After dinner, we went to see Annabelle. As I said, we’re both horror movie buffs. We really liked it and thought it was freaking terrifying!


We finally got home around 10:00 and discovered we both had the same idea… to dance to our first dance song, “Crazy Girl” by the Eli Young Band. Neither of us are dancers, but it was really nice and brought back some great memories for us. We agreed to dance to it every year in our living room. :) We even said that in a few years, our children will probably be groaning and saying, “UGH! Mom and Dad, you are SO LAME.” Ha! We finished the night by cutting into our wedding cake topper. In case you think we’re gross, this is a real tradition in which you freeze it and eat it on your first wedding anniversary. It had been wrapped up really well in the freezer for a year. It tasted really good still, especially the frosting, but was just a little dry. The bakery who made it actually shut down, sadly, so we were glad we could enjoy some of their cake one last time.

So that was our first anniversary. I look forward to many, many more!


Bumpdate: 25 Weeks


I’m 25 weeks today! Caleb should be about 13.5 inches long and more than 1.5 pounds! He is also apparently growing hair (or so I’ve read) which is too funny to me. Jerry and I have been talking a lot over the past few days about what he’ll look like, and we keep saying we’re dying to see him. Seeing as he will be 50% Mexican and 25% Italian, I’m thinking that he will have dark hair, dark eyes, and a dark complexion, though we’re both pale. We just can’t wait to find out!

This past Sunday was our first wedding anniversary, and we had a fun, full weekend spent together. I’ll write more about this tomorrow, but our weekend included doing our baby registry! We are all registered at Target. My friend who made my invitations gave them to me on Friday (I LOVE THEM), so my mom will be getting ready to send them out this week… yay! I can’t wait for my shower to celebrate our little guy. We had a lot of fun registering and picking things out for him. I was kind of annoyed though because when we registered there for the bridal shower, they gave us a packet of coupons and such, but we didn’t get any this time. So we went back on Sunday, and I was right… we should have gotten something. They gave us our free gift which ended up being awesome and well worth the trip back. It included a bottle, pacifier, diaper/wipe samples, coupons, and a few other things. Very cool! I love Target.

My sister-in-law and I also started couponing a few weeks back, and I started buying diapers and wipes this past week. I know we’ll be really short on money when I’m out on my maternity leave, so the more stuff I can stock up now while I’m still in work, the better. So far, I’ve gotten a small pack of Pampers, and a large box of Luvs, as well as some small packs of wipes. I used coupons and saved money on all of these. I’ve got some more coupons to use this week for more diapers too. If you already have a baby, how many diapers do they go through a day? I’m guessing a ton!

Next week is my 26 week appointment and glucola test, then I switch to appointments every 2 weeks instead of every 4! That means things are getting VERY real! We are also doing our hospital tour on Sunday. I also met the pediatrician from the office we toured last week, and decided to sign Caleb up there, so that is another thing off my check list. Woohoo!

I did pretty good with my exercise last week. My goal was to walk 5 times and I walked 4 times (twice in one day for 2 of those walks), so not too shabby! I’ve walked once so far this week (this morning), and am planning on 2-3 more walks this week. As for how I’m feeling, I’m feeling pretty good! I’ve had slight back pain, slight fatigue, and some occasional heartburn, but otherwise I’m doing pretty well. I had some intense back pain on Sunday morning, but I ended up lying down before our anniversary dinner and felt much better after. It could have been from doing too many errands that weekend, could have been from the walking, could have been from not wearing my maternity support belt enough that week… I’m not too sure. Once in awhile I get BAD back pain, but usually it’s just a slight nagging.

Lastly, I think it’s hilarious and adorable that every time Jerry has felt Caleb move (which has only been a few times so far), he goes “whoa! What was that?!” Ha!

And that’s all I’ve got this week! My question for you is… what are some essential baby items I should register for?! Of course I’ve registered for the obvious things, but what are some not-so-obvious things that you’ve used/needed for your baby? Some things he already has: crib, mattress, crib bedding set, dresser/changing table, changing table mattress and cover, bassinet, diaper caddy basket (to hold diapers in his room and carry around), a baby carrier you wear, tons of clothes and books. We are also getting a rocking chair and bookshelf soon. All the other stuff I THINK we need is on our registry… we’ve got almost 60 things on there! Hopefully I didn’t miss anything too important!


These were taken on Saturday. at 24 weeks, 4 days!

It’s been a year!


“Have I told you lately, I love you like crazy?” {our first dance: “Crazy Girl,” Eli Young Band}

How is it even possible that a year has already gone by since we got married? Today marks our one year wedding anniversary, and I am in awe!

I have to admit, Jerry and I defied the odds a bit. If you’ve read our love story, then you’d know that people were skeptical. I’ll be the first to admit, our “courtship” was a little bit on the strange side. We met online, on a fitness website, and were 3,000 miles apart for the first few months of our relationship. During that time, we managed to fall in love… over the internet. When we decided to meet in person, everyone was wary and nervous, but once they saw us together, they changed their minds. From the moment I first saw Jerry standing in that airport, June 15, 2012, to this very day, my love has never wavered. I knew in that very first instant that I loved him and that I would never stop. So what if no one else believed it?

On October 5, 2013, my life changed forever when I became Jerry’s wife. Sometimes I forget how lucky I am that I have a man who picked up his entire life and traveled across the country to be with me. He moved 3,000 miles away, to a place where he knew NO ONE, to give us and me a chance. He left beautiful California for snowy New York because he loves me THAT MUCH. How can I be anything but lucky? I know it’s easy to take others for granted, and sometimes I do just that, but when I really stop and think about it, I know how truly fortunate I am.

I’ve always believed that Jerry is my soulmate. I know this because there is a reason that we were brought together from opposite sides of the country. There is a reason for everything and we were truly supposed to be together. Our wedding solidified everything I already knew about us to be true.

The day we got married was, by and far, the best day of my life so far. I know this day can and will only ever be topped by the birth of our children. And speaking of children, what a first year it has been! In our first year of marriage, we bought our own home and got pregnant!

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While life is going great, and we have so much to look forward to in year two, I will say that I’ve learned a lot in our first year. It really is true that marriage can be tough; I won’t sugarcoat it. When you combine your life with someone else’s, there are obvious challenges… but we do our best to compromise and help each other however we can. Sometimes, life is a struggle, money is a struggle, and we can’t always do and get everything we want, but at the end of the day, we have a roof over our head (one that we get to call our very own), a baby on the way, and each other… so what more do we really need?

To Jerry, on our first anniversary: I hope you know that I still feel the exact same way about you now as I did the moment I first laid eyes on you, and the moment I said “I do,” easily two of the greatest moments of my life. I know it’s easy to take people for granted, but I also know how lucky I am to have you as my husband: one of the sweetest and most caring men I know. You are genuine, thoughtful, and sensitive. I hope you never change these things about you. While I know that not every day can be perfect, I hope that every year can be filled with at least some of the joy, fun, and love that we felt on our perfect day. I hope that every week is filled with the laughter and exuberance we shared at our wedding. I am proud of the man you have become. I know you have had some obstacles to overcome in your life, but you continue to make me proud by all the growing you have done and continue to do on a regular basis. You work so hard and make me feel so loved. You take care of me and for that I am so grateful. I can’t wait to see you become a daddy in just a few short months; I am confident you will be an amazing father, just as you have been an amazing husband. Your son is as lucky as I am!

There are a few things I want you to know on our first anniversary:

I want you to know that there is nothing I would change. Not one day, not one second, not even any of the stresses or the struggles. You are still the only one for me, and the only one I would ever choose, for the rest of my life.

I want you to know that the best moments of my life are the moments we spend laughing over nothing, and that I will spend the rest of my life continuing to make you laugh at all my crazy antics (thank you for finding me so funny, by the way).

I want you to know that all of my days are better because I know that I have you. Even on a crappy day, nothing can be that bad because I know that I am loved.

I want you to know that my love is unconditional. NOTHING will ever change that or take it away. We can and will get through anything that life ever throws at us.

I want you to know that my whole entire world changed because of you. Everything. All of it for the better.

I want you to know that I will always strive to be a good wife. We’ve done a lot of growing up in the past year, learning to be spouses, learning to be homeowners, learning to be responsible, learning to love more, and now, learning to be parents and full blown adults. I still have a lot of learning to do, but I’m glad that it’s with you.

And one last thing I want you always to remember, and never to forget: “I love you bigger than the moon…”





“Forever could never be long enough for me to feel like I’ve had long enough with you… marry me, today and every day.”

{Jerry’s surprise for me with rose petals and “Marry Me,” Train}

Review: Parenting: Illustrated With Crappy Pictures by Amber Dusick

Title: Parenting: Illustrated With Crappy Picturesparenting
Author: Amber Dusick
Genre/Audience: Nonfiction, memoirs, parenting, adult
Publication: Harlequin, 2013
Source: Library

Parenting is a pretty hilarious illustrated book. It chronicles many of Dusick’s adventures in parenting two young boys, all broken down into various chapters and categories on different parenting topics. All of these hilarious stories are accompanied by even funnier illustrations that look remarkably like stick figures but with a little more “oomph.”

Dusick is pretty blunt and straight-forward, which I like. She’s not afraid to swear and doesn’t sugar coat parenting at all. In fact, some of her stories made me a little scared and got me thinking, “what am I getting myself into?” It’s all in good fun though, and I appreciated her honesty about what being a parent really entails. I appreciated her humor even more, and liked that she looks on the funny, bright side of things. I think when you’re a parent, sometimes all you can do is laugh or you might go crazy, and she isn’t afraid to do just that. The dialogue is funny, and the stories are easy to read. I also want to note that you should pay attention to the details in the illustrations – they are hilarious. One that I particularly enjoyed accompanied her story about re-reading the same book over again to one of the kids, and if you look at the title of the book in the illustration, it says “Annoying Book,” or something along those lines.

This was a quick read that I flew through. I found myself laughing out loud on more than one occasion. I think this book will strongly appeal to parents, as well as expectant parents (such as myself) that have a sense of humor.

My Rating: 4/5