Thursday Slice of Life: The Next Three Months

After a fairly uneventful beginning of 2012, the next three months will prove to be very eventful.

This month, I should hear back on the two submissions I have out. In March Baby #2 will make his arrival. A few weeks later, Hubby and I will celebrate our fourth wedding anniversary. About a week after that, I’ll hit a milestone birthday, the big 3-0. Then, exactly 3 months from today, All’s Fair in Love & Politics releases.

It’s daunting to think all that’s going to happen in roughly 90 days!

Thursday Slice of Life: Pregnancy & The Internet

When I was pregnant with my son, I was constantly on the Internet reading up on pregnancy. Websites, message boards, blogs, I wanted to know everything. And in the end, I found out I learned too much unnecessary info, and not enough practical information.

I spent my days scared to death my baby wasn’t moving enough, convinced each doctor’s appointment would yield some terrible news, petrified that some food I was ingesting would ruin my unborn child for life.

Then, he was born. And I checked his breathing all the time, worried the formula I was supplementing with would make him slow, etc and etc.

Eventually, my time to spend trolling the Internet dwindled, especially when I went back to work. I found an amazing phenomenon… I suddenly wasn’t agonizing over every milestone or convinced making the choices best for our family (like supplementing with formula) would lead us all to ruin.

It really didn’t hit me until I became pregnant with my second child. I realized I wasn’t worried before each doctor’s appointment or dreaming up end of the world scenarios. Between taking care of a toddler, making it through morning sickness, and trying to become a published author, there wasn’t time to read about every possible tragedy.

So, my best advice to pregnant Moms? Avoid the Internet, utilize your doctor’s knowledge, confide in friends/family who have given birth. Worrying over every little thing is taxing, and you have better things to think about.

Slice of Life: Under the weather

This week has pretty much been, and will continue to be dedicated to sickness. Saturday through yesterday I was down for the count with a nasty cold, made that much more miserable by being 7 months pregnant. Now, my son is sick, fever and all.

Bottom line is not much is getting done around here except a lot of blowing noses and Tylenol dosages.

My January to do list isn’t getting much attention, so here’s hoping we can find the magic healthy elixir by Monday.

Slice of Life: History

I have always loved history. It was one of my favorite subject in schools, I love old movies, my first attempt at a book was historical fiction, and I continue to love books, movies, art, information from time periods I am interested in.

So, it should come as no surprise that I am endlessly fascinated by my own history. Over Christmas, my Grandpa talked about how he didn’t much care to find out about his ancestors. There might be things you might not want to know, and he went on to tell a story about an unsavory uncle of his. But then he went into some stories about his childhood with his mother and grandparents, and I was endlessly fascinated. That unsavory uncle might have been a not so nice human being, but that doesn’t stop me from wanting to know all about him.

Over at my other grandfather’s, we routinely take him out to visit the farm house he was born in. It’s been twenty plus years since anyone lived in the house, and it’s falling apart badly. My grandmother always complains that it’s an eyesore and can’t understand why my Grandpa would want to go back and see his childhood (and partial adulthood) home in tatters, but as Grandpa says, “it’s my heart.”

Despite it’s disrepair, I love taking Grandpa out there. It’s sad to see what the years of neglect have done, what teenagers have spray painted on the walls or where they have broken windows, but in my imagination I can see it as it once was, and because it is a part of Grandpa, it feels a part of me too.

Over Christmas, we took my son out on his first visit to the farm. He tramped around outside, and at two there’s not much more I expect from him. But, it was nice to take his picture outside the house. A nice memory to make, for history.


Thursday Slice of Life: Holiday Baking

Two years ago, I was very, very pregnant with my son. Since my due date was Dec. 23rd, and I was a teacher frantically grading essay finals before I went into labor, I decided to start my holiday baking early and freeze what I could.

I realized this was an amazing idea. Why had I not thought of it before? So, last year I did the same, and this year I am trying to be even more organized. Right now, I have three different types of cookie dough in my freezer. I hope to add some truffles this weekend, cook the cookies next week, and then make a few things that can’t be frozen in the days leading up to Christmas.

While I am not a big cook (because I am a very picky eater), I love to bake. When it comes to sweets about the only thing I don’t like are nuts or baked fruits. So, this is one time of year I do enjoy looking at other people’s recipes. Not just for ideas, but also because it’s interesting to see what other baked goods people have as part of their holiday tradition. So, my Christmas traditional baking includes:

  • Chocolate Krinkle Cookies
  • Sugar cookies
  • Peanut Butter Blossoms
  • Chocolate Chip Cookie Bars
  • Dark chocolate truffles
  • Corn Flake Christmas Tree wreaths
  • Kringla (a sweedish sweet roll)

My Mom usually bakes the Swedish Rye Bread (mmm, so tasty). I probably won’t try my hand at that this year, but one of these years I will.

So, what are your holiday baking traditions? Any good cookies without nuts or fruit to pass along?


Thursday Slice of Life: Parks & Rec

Happy December! Wait… it’s December? Ahhhh! I love the holiday season, but it’s amazing how quickly time passes in December. I’m not ready. Hold me.

Besides the zooming of the days and the lack of my Christmas decorations being completely up, today in slice of life I wanted to talk about my favorite TV show right now: Parks & Rec.

I love Amy Poehler since her days on SNL, and admittedly when I watched the first couple episodes of Parks & Rec years ago I was very underwhelmed. It was NOT funny, but something happened in the past few years so that it is not only hilarious, but they have a lovely little romance going on.

While Community and The Office have underwhelmed me this season, Parks & Rec continues to make me laugh and happy clap. If you haven’t watched this show yet, you should!

Thursday Slice of Life: Haul Out the Holly

This past weekend was in the mid-70s which is not at all normal for a Missouri November. Since it was so nice, if a bit windy, I went ahead and put out my Christmas lights like many other people in the neighborhood. I wasn’t going to turn them on until after Thanksgiving, but there were enough people in my neighborhood that had theirs on, I decided to go ahead.

I love Christmas. I love Christmas decorations. It has taken some sheer force of will to keep from getting out my other Christmas decorations this week. I know people moan about Christmas music already being in stores, commercials already touting holiday gifts, but it makes me happy.

How can sparkly lights, yummy treats, and uplifting music not make you happy?

Thursday Slice of Life: Snakes, Snails & Puppy Dog Tails

We had my twenty week ultrasound on Tuesday and found out that Baby #2 is a boy. With son#1 we had a name picked out long before we knew if he was a boy or girl. Now, Hubby and I are struggling. Since Baby1 has a family name, I feel like Baby2 should have a family name as well, but I’m not really sold on any of them right now.

We still have four months to decide, but people are always asking about names. I don’t like the pressure!

It’s way easier to name a fictional character. Also, I don’t have to grow them for nine months inside of me or push them out. I know people liken writing a book to having a baby. But NO WAY. As hard as writing a book is, children are infinity times harder.

Slice of Life Thursday: Cooking Competition Shows

I have a small obsession. It’s an odd obsession. One my family and friends simply do not understand.

I love cooking competition shows.

This really isn’t strange, but people that know me well find it strange because I am a very picky eater. Very rarely do competitors on these shows ever make anything that I would even consider eating. Even Top Chef: Just Desserts tests my very, very pronounced sweet tooth. I don’t get ideas from these shows, I don’t want to make what they make, but somehow I find the act of cooking/baking fascinating… in competition.

Chopped, Iron Chef America, all the Top Chefs… count me in. Even if I have no idea why.

Thursday Slice of Life: 18 weeks

Yesterday I hit the 18 week mark in my pregnancy. I’m finally at that stage where I am starting to look pregnant. Strangers might think me a bit chubby, but friends & family are definitely starting to notice the belly.

At my doctor’s appointment on Tuesday, my doctor started asking me about what I wanted to be different about giving birth to my second child. Is there some way to make second child magically appear without doing the whole pain thing? If so, count me in. Also, I am so not ready to be thinking about labor. I still have 22 weeks left! (23 if this baby is anything like my son and simply refuses to leave).

In writing news, I sent my first round of edits off Tuesday. I’ve gotten the next little chunk to work on, but this week is crazy busy so I haven’t had time to work on them yet.

I am paranoid that my release day is going to come dangerously close to when I’m due, but I won’t know my release day until all rounds of edits are done. All I can do is wait. (And be paranoid, of course).