Thursday, November 26, 2015


we had a really nice thanksgiving.
a stress-free morning,
a delicious meal at ronnie's sisters.
lots of lounging.
and since brette didn't nap,
she fell asleep on our way home and
we had both girls in bed by 6:30.
s u c c e s s f u l

another success?
my desserts.
seriously. the bomb.

this year i'm thankful for family:
the little one ronnie and i created.
they're seriously perfection.
my immediate family, that i'm lucky enough
to see and share a meal every monday night.
they would do anything for me and my girls. 
(well, anything except make a special trip to bring me thanksgiving leftovers. ahem, dad.) 
my extended family that makes traditions fun, important and a good time.
and my chosen family. 
the girls that i get to call my best friends and
will be my village while raising our kids together.
love you all.
THANK YOU for being a part of our lives.  
ps -
i have to work tomorrow
so ronnie will spend a full 11 hours
with both his girls and no help.
send your prayers.

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

pumpkin pie cake

i'm in charge of desserts and rolls for our thanksgiving dinner.
of course, pecan pie is on my list.
it's mandatory and i must admit,
i make a mean pecan pie.
and just in case anyone out there is looking for
another last minute thanksgiving dessert idea,
here's what else i'm making:
pumpkin pie cake.
i've never been a huge fan of pumpkin pie,
but i feel like pumpkin something should be on the table.
so when a co-worker said she had an amazing pumpkin cake recipe
i thought i would give it a try.
here's what you'll need:
1 can of pumpkin
1 C evaporated milk
1 1/2 C sugar
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1/2 tsp allspice
4 eggs
1 box yellow cake mix
1 stick butter
grated pecans
mix the pumpkin, milk, sugar, eggs, and all the spices
together until well blended.
pour into a 9x13 pan and
sprinkle the box of cake mix on top.
melt the stick of butter and
pour over cake mixture.
top with chopped pecans.
bake for 45 minutes at 350
(or until it passes the toothpick test)
ENJOY!  and have a happy thanksgiving.
now excuse me,
i have some baking to do.

Monday, November 23, 2015

reid: four months


these months are going faster and faster.
and just like that she's four months old.

we actually have her fourth month well-baby visit tomorrow.
i'm so excited to see how much she weighs and her height.
i think she's grown so much.
her neck strength is very good.
she holds it up on her own all the time.
she's rolling side to side but hasn't completely flipped over yet.
and right now she prefers to be held,
but i think, for good reason.
she's in that in between stage where she can't sit up
on her own yet, but she doesn't want to lay down all the time either.
so basically, she wants someone to sit her up so she can see
what's going on and be a part of the action.
she's in size two diapers and 3-6 month clothing.
her hair is staying red and she has quite a bit of it.
we can actually already put barrettes in it,
but she is getting that bald spot in the back.
wah wah.
hopefully it grows in fast once she's sitting up more.
her eyes are blue and fingers crossed, she keeps them.
she has the cutest little grin and
the highest pitch scream i've ever heard.
i'm hoping that's just how she cries and that she's not in pain, but
we've been messing around a lot with her reflux medicine and
her pediatrician upped her dose. 
i'm anxious to see what she wants to do when we meet tomorrow.
i'm thinking we either need to try something new or
prescribe her more because in the last few weeks i've
noticed the puking has come back and she's arching her back
a lot which is a sign of discomfort.
i just don't want my sweet girl to be in any pain.
our sleep routine is a joke.
night time is still on point but with the time change
it went from 7:45 to 6:45 and that means
i'm upstairs nursing her by 6:15.
it makes for interesting dinners and has pretty much
put a hold on most social invites.
if its past 5:30, i'm out.
i've tried to slowly push it back,
but i don't think we're ever gonna make it past 7:00-7:30.
she's just too tired.
mostly because her naps are all out of wack.
i can't seem to get on a schedule.
she gets up about 6:46 and is back down for a nap
by 8:30.  that only lasts about an hour.
then she's back down around 11:30,
unless we're out running errands and then i hold her off until 1:00.
but once again that, doesn't last long.
our sweet spot is normally around 2:00.
i can sometimes get a couple hours out of her.
and then she's back down around 5:30,
but only for 30 mins.
(enough time for me to scarf something down for dinner.)
and finally she's out for the night around 6:45.
add brette's nap in there at 1:00 and i literally feel like all i do
is feed kids and put them to sleep...
and somehow its exhausting.
she still eats every two hours.
there is no lengthening out this girl
because she doesn't just lay there and eat very often.
brette would nurse a constant 25 minutes.
reid is too busy looking around or messing with her face
so unless she's swaddled, i normally only nurse for 15 minutes.
since she's not getting as much food, she doesn't go as long in between.
i don't mind it because i don't know if brette
would last that long waiting for us to be done anyway.
i nurse her the days i'm here and
on mondays and fridays, she takes a bottle.
she's started eating more: 4-5 oz bottles,
 which means i need to start pumping more.
i was just pumping at work, but i can
see my freezer supply of milk is dwindling, so
i'm probably going to have to start pumping before bed every night.
after i put her down for the night she sleeps until
4:30 - 5:30 - basically 10 hours before needing to nurse again. (such a champ)
recently she's been busting out of her swaddle so i've nursed her a few extra times
this week, but nothing to complain about.
also, at four months i'd like to start giving her some water.
probably once or twice a day i'm going to try to get a few ounces down her.
we'll see if she'll take it.
her favorite toy is her pacifier.
she hold on to it and can actually put it in her own mouth,
but she also spends a lot of time messing around with it
which produces a lot of squeals.
she is so loud.
and she talks all the time.
dear lord, i think i got blessed/cursed with two
loud, talkative girls.
i've been trying to get her to do more tummy time
so she can roll over soon, which will also
help strengthen her abilities to sit up on her own...
something she is dying to do.
 and i'm waiting for her to find her feet.
i remember B was obsessed with her feet,
but i don't think reid has realized they're down there yet.
she was baptized on her 4 month birthday (more on that later)
first holiday! (hello, halloween)
she went to her first sporting event - a football game.
i'm sure there are more, but i can't think of any.
 she's doing really well and i'm
getting really excited for the holidays.
i can't tell you how amazing its going to be to
watch brette and reid celebrate together.


Sunday, November 15, 2015

the sunday rundown

10 quick updates...
1. i'm making a couple my favorite recipes this week.
if you need a dinner idea, try them out.
i plan on freezing any leftovers because
lets be honest, i live off freezer meals.
2. even though nursing isn't one of my
favorite parts about having kids,
it gives me some of my favorite memories.
is there anything more precious than a baby
looking up at you and smiling mid-meal?
reid is a pro at this.
3. have you tried snapchat?
i'm new and still learning,
but its a fun way to see my friends'
and their kids in st. louis.  #DZGalPals
4. ronnie painted!
you read that right.
we used "everyday white" for the color.
its two shades lighter than the paint we chose for the upstairs.
i think i'm really going to like it.
we wanted something lighter since our wood ceiling in the
front room makes it feel so dark.
so now we officially have a finished kitchen.
(well, kind of)
next up is the dining room and living room.
(hopefully done this week.)
5. reid is getting baptized this weekend.
i'm so excited to break out my mom's
baptismal gown again and take pictures.
my fingers are crossed that she doesn't have some
sort of blow out while in the dress.
please, god.
6. i started a diet,
then i switched to another one,
then halloween struck and candymania took over.
now i'm starting over.
why can't be naturally skinny?
life's. not. fair.
7. i finished watching the last season of dexer
and i'm seriously distraught.
i know this is two years late, but really?
i'm okay with killing off deb, because i didn't know how they
would do without each other anyway.
but the fact that they end by
throwing him out in oregon, chopping down trees while his
son and the love of his life are off in argentina kills me.
it kills me.
8. after kassie's amazing wedding in mexico,
my friends decided that we should try to travel together again.
i mean, what's more fun than that?!
we're going to hawaii in 2017.
everyone is having a baby this year so by that summer we
are all free to travel without kids and not feel bad about it.
plus it gives us all some time to save up the money.
i think we might rent a house and kick back for a week beachside.
i might go ahead and start the countdown.
9. i lied on my last post about christmas shopping.
i've bought more since then and i can't stop.
something's wrong with me.
10. i started a book last night.
i go in spurts with reading.
i'll go months and months and read every night.
i love to read.
but then i'll stop and won't read at all.
before last night, i hadn't read a book
since i lived with my parents last winter.
weird, right?
its nice to have a book in my hand again.

so there are 10 little updates on life around here.
nothing and everything is going on at once.
have a good week!

Thursday, November 12, 2015

the early bird gets the discount

i'm not trying to rush into christmas.
in fact, i'm one of those that refuse
to acknowledge the holiday until thanksgiving
dinner is safely in my belly.
(and then i run head first into my christmas decorations)
i like halloween and thanksgiving.
the pumpkins, ghosts, turkeys, pilgrims...
they all deserve our love.
especially my personal favorite, pecan pie.
dear lord, i can't wait to eat pecan pie.

there were some amazing veterans day online sales
and i broke my own rule.
i started buying for christmas.
i know. i'm such a traitor.
but how cute are these matching pj's for the girls?
and at 40% off it was a no-brainer.
then getting a stocking for reid was a must.
and it obviously had to match the ones i bought a few years ago,
so when i found another version, i scooped it right up.
(hers is the snowman one, second from the right.)
that's it.
i just bought two things.
it could have been a lot worse.
and it got me itching to buy a lot more.
next on my list are books and ornaments.
i'll try to hold off until its truly the christmas season,
but i'm not making any promises.
i apologize for the pre-thanksgiving christmas post.
it won't happen again.

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

let's go royals

i'm sure you've heard.
the ROYALS won the world series.
it was a pretty big deal in these parts.
especially since it hasn't been done in the last 30 years.
i'm a big fan and i lured ronnie and brette into the action too.
when we won, i decided to take
my girls to the parade to celebrate.
it was scheduled for tuesday at noon.
i could get there around 9 or 10 in the morning with a few hours
to make our way to whatever spot we could find and
hopefully leave by 2 to get home for a late nap.
my bffs, shannon and kassie were off on tuesday too, so
we decided to brave the crowds together.
the more adults the better.
the news was speculating 200,000 people.
sure, its a lot, but i thought we could handle it.
but then everything went crazy.
shannon was little late meeting me.
you know kids...
you try to do something cool with them
and they turn on you.
brette was being cranky about her shirt
and shannon's clan was giving her a hard time too.
with five kids and three adults we thought the best
plan of action was to pack a double stroller.
have two kids sitting at all times which leaves
the remaining three kids supervised by three adults.
we just didn't want to lose anyone.  obviously.
well, my freaking double stroller wouldn't fit in shannon's pilot.
wait for it...
neither would my jogger.
we finally rearranged things so the jogger would sit shotgun,
we threw in an umbrella stroller
and i squeezed myself in between two carseats in the very back.
oh yeah, and we hadn't even met up with kassie yet.
there was no hope.
we finally left my house at 9:30 and called kassie to meet us.
at first kass wanted to meet up at dana's house.
she's close to the plaza and there was a shuttle taking the crowds in from there.
but traffic was bad and the numbers of attendants was raising by the hour.
now they were saying 300,000 people.
we decided to meet kass at the zoo and ride the shuttle in from there
hoping that maybe it would be a little less crowded and get us
off the highway sooner.
um no.
we waited in line forever just to park our car.
but at last - we made it and kass was there to help us with
all. our. freaking. kids.
we busted out my portable kids potty for a fast bathroom break,
loaded all our bags, snacks, drinks and children and headed to the bus stop.
now all we have to do is hop on the shuttle and make our way downtown.
the line for the shuttle was OVER a mile long.
ps- reports are now saying 500,000 people expected.
holy lord.
shannon was getting a little scared of the sheer number of people
and i was getting nervous we wouldn't even make the parade in time.
so we decided to pack it up.
that's right.
we went through all that work, just to call it a day.
reese, shannon's oldest, cried and we all felt like big jerks.
to make it up to her we decided to take all five kids to
buffalo wild wings for lunch and they could watch the parade on
all 50 of their big screens. perfect.
we even told reese she could order dessert.
(you gotta do, what you gotta do when kill a small child's dream)
buffalo was packed and both babies needed to eat.
the waitress sucked and we waited f o r e v e r  for our food.
brette was trying to steal crayons from graham and
the TV's were so loud i couldn't think straight.
we finally made it home around 1:00 - - four hours since the start of adventure.
four hours to basically go to lunch.
i threw both my girls down for a nap
and shannon and kass came over and hung out for the rest of the day.
it ended up being really fun and i actually got to see
the parade and the pep rally.
in the end over 800,000 people showed up to cheer on our boys in blue.
i'm so glad we didn't go.
it would have been different if we had ronnie and drew to help,
but it was just too much, with too many kids.
next year, (hopefully we win again) i'm calling mimi to
babysit and us girls are going to go.
THAT sounds much better.


Sunday, November 8, 2015

and so it goes.

i took this idea and made it my own.
we've been shooting these pictures now for
three years and i plan to keep going.
i know i'd like another one when reid turns a year old.
and maybe a new one every summer after?
we'll see if i can remember.
i just think it would be so cool to have
them until they graduate high school.
just us girls, hanging out on our bed.
here's our newest addition:
sister hugs.
and a look back from the beginning.
we'll see you again in july!

Thursday, November 5, 2015

trick or treat

we had such a fun halloween!
it makes such a difference when it falls on a saturday.
no rushing around after work trying to get kids in costumes,
fed and out the door.
we actually spent the whole day doing fun, halloween activities.
first off, LS has a parade in the morning for all the kids and dogs
to strut their stuff and get candy from local stores.
(we left our mutts at home)
we also managed to make our way into our downtown
diner for a little breakfast.
once you sit down, hot cinnamon rolls are served.
yes please!
when we got back home we decided to carve our pumpkin.
we were supposed to do it family fall day,
but i actually liked saving it for halloween.




then it was nap time and as soon as the girls woke up we were off to brian's.
madeline, eden, mimi and papa were all waiting for us
with hot bowls of chili.
unfortunately, the girls were way too excited to eat.
so instead, we started getting them all dressed and ready.
we had to be out the door by 5:20 for the neighborhood parade
and then (for the first time ever) i actually had a trick-or-treater.
it makes halloween so fun. 



last year, brette wasn't walking yet... what a difference a year makes.
we were back at brian's early enough to hand out candy to other kids
and i actually got to eat dinner.
the girls ate dinner too... 18 candy bars.
i'm not kidding.
at one point we couldn't find the huge bag of candy
that we bought to give out and that's because brette was sitting with
it between her legs, just going to town.
in fact, brette woke up and told me she doesn't want breakfast,
she just wants candy.
halloween has to be the wors/best holiday ever.
ours was super sweet and already i can't wait for next year.
i'm hoping reid will be out there walking with the older girls.

Monday, November 2, 2015


ronnie and i celebrated 7 years of marriage yesterday, but
i didn't write this.
very romantic for our anniversary, right?
sometimes i read things that say it
better than i ever could.
so here are Marielle Petkoff's words
from her blog, The Resplendent.
it struck a chord with me with
what ronnie and i have.
what we had.
what we will have.

Dear Husband,
This season of life has been a challenging one.
I know it shouldn’t come as a surprise, since people have always told us how hard the first few years of marriage can be. We are smack dab in the middle of those years, after all.
And I know we are not the only ones feeling it. As a matter of fact, I’ve recently started to see other young couples our age announcing the end of their marriages. At first, these announcements always shock me. How could a couple this young be ending a marriage that feels like it just begun?
But, as you and I sit here in silence in front of the television after a long day, staring at our phones, I have to admit that I get it. All of those people who warned us that marriage isn’t always easy? They were right. It is hard. I think we would both admit that this whole “for better or for worse” thing hasn’t always been a walk in the park. In a few years, we’ve already been through so much together. There have been new jobs, unexpected jobs changes and jobs we’ve hated every second of. There have been moves, a miscarriage, illness, and the loss of family members. There have been financial worries and more “adult” decisions than I thought two kids like us would ever have to make.
And if we are being totally honest, I think we’d both admit that adding children to the mix has been one of the hardest changes of all. We fight over things that wouldn’t exist if it weren’t for our kids—things like, who has to get up at 6 a.m. on a Saturday with the screaming alarm clock, who has to discipline them after the tantrum in the middle of the frozen food aisle, and why in the world you would give our toddler a cookie just 10 minutes before dinner.
We spend very little time as just the two of us these days, and when we finally do find time, we usually spend it doing “boring” stuff. We catch up on episodes of our favorite shows, we go to Target just to walk around in peace without children, or we sit in a movie theater shoving our faces with the sugar we usually deny our kids. We don’t spend as much time talking and laughing and playing as we used to, because we are both so tired. When we get the chance, we just want to turn our brains off. We don’t want to think. We stare at our phones instead of each other. Some days, it feels like we hardly talk at all. And when we do, it’s often to take out our stress and frustration on one another.
I know that there have been times during our pointless arguments that we’ve both wondered if these years are supposed to be this way. We’ve wondered if we are the only ones who don’t know how to pass the time with our antsy toddler on those long Saturday afternoons. We’ve questioned whether or not we are the only ones who argue over who has to watch the kids instead of spending our free time going on elaborately planned family adventures together.
Since getting married and having kids, we’ve spent less time taking care of ourselves, our relationship, in favor of sleep. We’ve started to “let ourselves go,” and let’s be honest, we might even be starting to rock mom and dad bods. We don’t go out with our friends as much as we used to and staying up late usually means 10:00 (or maybe 12:00, if we are feeling extra crazy). Our idea of partying is ordering pizza so that neither of us has to cook or clean up the kitchen.
Let’s face it. In just three short (seven) years together, our marriage has already changed a lot. And to some, our marriage might not look all that exciting.
But, I want you to know something.
This season? It hasn’t surprised me. I knew it would be challenging. And I’m not na├»ve. I know that we aren’t going to “outgrow” the hard. It’s not like learning to ride a bike. You don’t just figure out the hard part once and then cruise through the rest of life. Each season ahead is bound to bring challenges of its own. I know our marriage will continue to change, and there are sure to be continued growing pains along the way.
But, even now, I love our life. I love our boring, weird, simple life. Even though my words and actions may not always show it, I love you through the quiet nights of staring at the television in silence, because I’m sitting next to you. I love you through the financial worries and hard decisions, because I’m facing them with you. Despite the challenges we have faced as a married couple, I know this is just a season, and I am so very glad that I’m living it with you.
Yes, it’s hard sometimes.
And there will be more hard seasons, no doubt. There will be days when I’m crazy about you and days when I don’t like you at all. There will be times of pure bliss and times when our faith is the thread holding us together. There will be hardships ahead like nothing we’ve ever faced before, and there will be times so good that we will do everything in our power to hold onto them forever. We’ll face boring and crazy, easy and hard, babies and budgets, wins and losses, joy and pain, long hours and sleepless nights. The seasons will just keep changing, and so will our life together.
But one thing will never change, I’m certain.
Through every season, dear Husband, I will love you and our life together.

happy seven years, ronnie.
here's to us.

(and maybe an extra toast to THE ROYALS too! World. Series. Champions. wahoo!!!)