Monthly Archives: April 2011

My Latest Reads…

Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix (Harry Potter, #5)Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix by J.K. Rowling

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

The series is definitely veering toward the complex! I’ve gone ahead and read the next book before I reviewed this one, though, so now my thoughts of the two are muddled together. Still loving the series!

Mockingjay (The Hunger Games, #3)Mockingjay by Suzanne Collins

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I listened to this in audiobook form, and had a hard time taking out the earbuds! While it wasn’t quite as intriguing as the first book, The Hunger Games, I was very impressed. I enjoyed that the series started in a tight knit circle around Katniss, and by the end of Mockingjay all of Panem was in the mix. And, without giving away any spoilers, I was VERY happy with Katniss’s romantic decision at the end of the series!

Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince (Harry Potter, #6)Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince by J.K. Rowling

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This book left me hanging, which I detest. I was not particularly happy with the end – though I realize it’s part of a series, there was no closure. That being said… I can’t wait to dive into the next one! I’ve read the series before, yet somehow managed to forget nearly every detail of every book. Very handy, as I’ve been enjoying my re-reads in thorough suspense.

The Silent GovernessThe Silent Governess by Julie Klassen

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This book was NOT what I expected (in a good way!). I enjoy Christian fiction, but often find it overbearing or pushy. The Silent Governess, on the other hand, had spirituality/religion as an underlying tone with brief references. I was very impressed that it was able to convey it’s message without using pages and pages to talk about God’s Word.

That being said… the story was also very well done. I’m a sucker for historical romances, so this was right up my alley.

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Pregnancy Nutrition Checklist

I had a difficult time finding a simple, streamlined pregnancy nutrition checklist, so I decided to make one myself.  I don’t use it daily, but I do pull it out several times per week to make sure I’m keeping on track.

Here’s a pdf version of the pregnancy nutrition checklist and a version that you can fiddle with on Microsoft Word.  Feel free to use it and change it as you’d like!

A Conundrum

There are dozens of things you “need” to buy for a baby-to-be.  The question is – how much of it is really necessary?  And must it all be bought new, top of the line?  I’m sure the answers are 1) not as much as you’d think and 2) no.  The conundrum then becomes – which items are essential to buy, and which are important to spend a bit more on?

Searching all of the websites out there just made me more confused than before, but in an attempt to get organized before the summer rummage sales begin, here’s a list of potential baby items to keep my eyes peeled for.

To buy new

  • crib
  • crib mattress
  • fitted crib sheets (2)
  • disposable diapers for infant
  • diaper wipes
  • baby soap/shampoo
  • bulb syringe nasal aspirator
  • baby nail clippers
  • BPA free bottles (4 oz and 8 oz)
  • bottle brush
  • baby first aid kit
  • breast pump/breast milk bags
  • infant car seat
  • baby hair brush
  • teething rings (non-plastic?)
  • baby-friendly laundry detergent
  • non-plastic sippy cup
  • diaper pail
  • nursing bra
  • baby powder

To buy used or get as hand-me-downs

  • dresser (or baskets for closet)
  • rocking chair or glider
  • waterproof mattress pad for crib
  • infant gowns (open elastic bottom)
  • swaddling cloth
  • clothes
  • hat
  • baby bathtub
  • bibs
  • diaper bags
  • baby toys
  • stroller
  • baby swing
  • infant seat
  • high chair
  • ring sling
  • boppy pillow (c-shaped pillow)
  • baby spoons
  • board books
  • safety gate
  • outlet covers
  • toilet seat lock
  • cupboard and drawer latches/locks
  • toy basket
  • hamper

To Make

  • crib mobile (black/white/red)
  • cloth wipes
  • changing pads
  • burp cloths
  • bibs
  • baby toys

Wait and See (or ask other people)

  • changing pad
  • sleep positioner
  • cloth diapers
  • separate thermometer
  • calibrated medicine dropper
  • baby monitor
  • baby washcloths
  • breastfeeding accessories (lanolin, cloth breast pads)
  • pacifier
  • night light
  • dishwasher caddy for bottles
  • bumpo seat

What’s been keeping me so busy lately

After my most recent doctor’s appointment, however, I feel like I can officially announce…

I’m pregnant!

I announced it in a (originally posted as private) post a few weeks ago, so feel free to scroll down and check it out.  I had a couple of posts that I’d already done and can (finally) share them with the world after hearing a teeny tiny heartbeat at my 11 week appointment.

And just in case you missed the photo evidence, here it is!

My 50 Reasons (or the beginning of it, anyway…)

My 50 Reasons to Get Healthy through Eating and Exercise

(segment one of five)

  1. I’ve heard that unborn babies can taste whatever their mothers eat, and develop their tastes accordingly.  I’d rather have my child develop a taste for broccoli than chocolate chip cookies.
  2. Pounds creep on pretty easily.  Unfortunately, they don’t tend to slip off quite as quickly.  I’d rather have less to lose in the first place.
  3. I’d like to have a high energy level that doesn’t crash.
  4. I’d like to have a mood that doesn’t swing (any  more than my hormones are already making it, anyway!).
  5. Exercise promotes better sleep – and I think I’ll need to be as well rested for our latest adventure as possible.
  6. Paul loves to go on walks – much, much more than I do.  If I can learn to love walking as much as he does, we’d have nearly unlimited quality time together.
  7. Back pain appears to be a plague later on in pregnancy.  Strengthening those muscles now can only help in the future!
  8. If I run errands without the car (instead using a bike or walking), I can save some cash on gas.
  9. I can get some “reading” in.  Walking or exercising on a machine is a great time to listen to a Playaway (similar to a book on tape).
  10. Two words: love handles.


Pregnancy Timeline and Milestones

Inspired by Julia over at My Life in Transition, I’m going to start keeping a pregnancy timeline and milestones list.  While, at ten weeks preg-o now, time seems to be inching along, I’m sure it will go faster than I think.  As Gretchen Rubin puts it… the days are short, but the years are long.  Hopefully I’ll post regularly, and then I’ll eventually corral all of those posts into a page.

Oh, and just so you know… this is WAY too much information about my personal life and body.  I started to put “more than you wanted to know” after the ultra personal items… but then had to put it so many times that I couldn’t find more ways to word it.  So…  here you go anyway.  My apologies in advance.

1/27/11 – first day of last period

2/12/11 – possible conception date

2/27/11 – started to get a bit suspicious that I was pregnant

3/6/11 – positive pregnancy test!!

3/17/11 – very slight spotting; went in for bloodwork

3/18/11 – bloodwork came back normal – about 66,000 HCG at 6.5 weeks

3/21/11 – ultrasound – saw heartbeat (145 bpm) and our grain-of-rice baby!  also saw a second sac (irregularly shaped and completely empty)

3/25/11 – told my parents by putting a bun in the oven and asking my mom to check on something I had in the oven — I’ve never heard her scream so loud!

3/27/11 – told Paul’s parents by sending an e-mail with the ultrasound picture and calling to ask them for input on some “doctor’s results”

4/13/11 – next doctor’s appointment

Young Adult Book Reviews – Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, The Hunger Games, and Catching Fire

The Hunger Games (The Hunger Games, #1)The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

My husband and I read this aloud to each other – a chapter a night to begin with. As the pace picked up, it was hard to stop reading, so we often bumped it up to two chapters. It was a page-turner, but at the same time a book to savor. My next reads will definitely be Catching Fire and Mockingjay.

Catching Fire (The Hunger Games, #2)Catching Fire by Suzanne Collins

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Like the Harry Potter series, this series has been intensifying as it continues. The first book, The Hunger Games, focused on Katniss, her immediate circle of family and friends, and her personal problems. The second book expands – no longer is the worry soley for Katniss – it’s now for Panem as a whole. I’m look forward to the third and final book – and a revolution, perhaps?

Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire (Harry Potter, #4)Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire by J.K. Rowling

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This book was the first in the series that turned quite a bit darker. No longer are we talking a vague sense of evil, or Voldemort vs. Harry Potter – it’s getting more complicated. I was a huge fan of the book and can’t wait to re-read the final three.

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