My First C-Section Experience

I was around 32-34 weeks pregnant when I found out that my baby was in a breech position. My doctor calmly explained that there was a high likelihood that I would need a c-section because he was sitting breech so late in my pregnancy and because he was such a big baby. I really didn’t hear anything she said after “you’ll probably need a c-section” and upon leaving her office, I ugly-cried in my car for about 20 minutes.

I couldn’t believe that I wasn’t going to get to have a “normal” birth. I was cruuuuuuuushed.

So, I was going to have a c-section. I started googling furiously. I wanted to know what a c-section was like and exactly what the procedure was. What I found really scared me. There are lots of blog posts out there about different women’s c-section experiences, and each person’s experience is unique. However, most of the blogs I read, those women’s experiences weren’t great.

Let me tell you about mine.

First, let’s assume that you’ve read about what happens during a c-section. It’s surgery—your abdomen is open on an operating table and people have their hands inside of you. It’s no walk in the park, but it’s not a completely debilitating either.

I went in for my scheduled c-section in November of 2013. The night before, my husband and I went out for a lovely dinner, came back, spent one final quiet evening together, and went to bed. In the morning, I got up and showered, did my hair, put on some make-up (because, let’s be honest, first photos) and we headed to the hospital.

There’s paperwork, there’s meeting doctors, there’s getting gowned up, there’s a spinal, a catheter blah blah blah.

Then you have a c-section. Since our son was breech, his head was the last thing to come out. Now, I couldn’t feel or see a thing, I just laid on the other side of that sterile drape with my husband waiting to hear that first cry. When it finally came, I breathed a huge sigh of relief. They wrapped him up and I got to hold him almost right away. (After the cleaning up, cord cutting, etc.) I got to hold him the entire time they stitched me up and I was wheeled to recovery. Our doctor snapped our first family photo.


I had some pain in my shoulder right after they pulled my son out (this can happen), but one of the OR nurses massaged it for me and worked out moving it around a bit to keep me more comfortable. I spent some time in the recovery area and then got moved into my hospital room.

I spent the afternoon relaxing and holding my baby. I still had the catheter in because my spinal was still wearing off. (How thoughtful of them to not let me pee myself.) Once the spinal wore off, I took my first lap around the maternity ward. My husband (who is a doctor) told me that I could take the day off if I wanted to, but one of the key elements of a speedier recovery is to get your body moving. I took my first walk just a few hours after my surgery. It was a slow, and careful walk, but a walk nonetheless.

I was also finally also able to have clear liquids—I was so thirsty! However, be sure to pace yourself. I say this, because I didn’t. (I’ll spare you the details, but it wasn’t pleasant.) One of the current rules about open abdominal surgeries is no solid foods until you pass gas. I delivered my son on a Tuesday and wasn’t able to eat until 1 am on Thursday morning. Definitely pack snacks!  It’s hard to order take out at 1 am.

As Wednesday and Thursday went on, I kept walking with my son every day—a few laps around the maternity ward 2-3 times a day. I also took a shower and padded around the hospital room. I think the hardest part of those first few days was getting up and laying down, but it wasn’t terrible.

C-section babies are sometimes slow to start nursing and mine definitely was. He showed very little interest on day 1, and not much on day 2 or 3. I started to panic a bit. The hospital provided me with a pump and I began pumping to get things going. However, before we left the hospital, we did supplement with formula.

We left the hospital on a Friday morning. When we got home, I made lunch and unpacked my bag. I wasn’t too sore or stiff, but I was careful. I took another glorious shower and settled in to take care of our new little one. By the time my family showed up for Thanksgiving two weeks later, I was pretty much back to normal.

Here are some things that I found helpful during my pregnancy and c-section recovery:

1 – I exercised throughout my entire pregnancy. I know this was a HUGE help in making my recovery so smooth.

2 – I got moving as soon as I could after my c-section and kept moving. Just 2-3 short walks around the hospital floor a few times a day made a huge difference.

3 – Staying hydrated. I drank lots of water—lots.

4 – I stayed ahead of my pain. I took all of my pain meds on schedule. I also started stool softeners in the hospital. The pain pills the hospital provides really helped manage my pain very well, but I can’t say it did the same for my bowels.

5 – I ate plenty of good, nutritious foods once I was cleared for solids. Nursing takes a lot of calories, so eat up!

If you’re facing the possibility of the c-section, I hope that reading a positive experience helps!

My Maternity Wardrobe – the Second Time Around

My Maternity Wardrobe

During my last pregnancy, I spent lots of time staring longingly at my non-maternity clothes. I knew why they didn’t fit (huge baby belly plus a little extra “maternal storage tissue”), but that didn’t make it any easier to look at them for 6+ months.

I’ve always struggled with weight issues. About 11 years ago, after my weight peaked at somewhere over 200 pounds. (I never found out how much I weighed exactly because I didn’t want to know.) I came to a point when I decided to make some big changes. I started working out and modified my diet.  As a result, I lost about 40-45 pounds. I still remember the first time I slipped on a pair of size 12 pants. I couldn’t recall the last time I’d been a 12.  Ultimately, my body settled comfortably into being a size 10.

Over the last decade, I gained and lost 10 or so pounds here and there. With my son, I gained 40 pounds and then lost about 60. After weaning him, some of that weight started to creep back on and I was diligently working my Weight Watchers program to shed those pounds when I found out that I was pregnant with baby #2.

I decided to approach my closet in a completely different way during this pregnancy. I was intrigued by this idea of a “capsule wardrobe”.  (You can read all about them here.)  The basic idea is to hone your wardrobe down to about 40 pieces you really love and know fit you perfectly, and only wear those pieces for a season (about 3 months). Once that season is finished, you create another capsule wardrobe.

Once I went into maternity pants full-time, I packed away everything that didn’t fit. Everything. I bought 4 cardboard boxes from Lowes and put it all away. I also put away boots and shoes I knew that I wouldn’t wear in my third trimester.

It was awesome.

Walking into my closet and knowing that every single piece in there fits me was a terrific feeling. And I also found that with fewer options, getting dressed was faster and I learned how to wear things multiple ways. It was a great experiment for me.

Here are some things I found helpful in dressing for my pregnancy with style:

Use accessories – I use scarves and chunky necklaces to dress up what would otherwise be, really boring outfits. I also continued to wear my non-maternity cardigans for layering and pops of color.

Be comfortable – Being pregnant isn’t always comfortable, why wear clothes that make that feeling worse? I invested in several maternity dresses, maternity tops/tunics and stretchy black pants and well-fitted jeans to stay comfortable, but still look stylish (and not like I’d just rolled out of bed).

Belly bands and camis – I found that my maternity pants fit me differently as my belly grew. When I was smaller (only 15-20 weeks), a belly band helped hold my pants up until I really grew into them. I also really liked these maternity camis from Target and wore them my entire pregnancy.


What did you find most challenging about your wardrobe when you were pregnant?  What tips did you find most helpful?

I Tried It: Sunless Tanning. Kate Somerville’s 360 Body Tanning Towelettes

Here’s my experience with Kate Somerville 360 Body Tanning Towelettes.

These towelettes are sold in packs of 8 for $48 per pack. Since I wasn’t sure I if was going to love them, I searched and found a 2 pack of towelettes from a seller on Ebay and purchased those first before taking the plunge and buying 8 of them.

Using the towelette:

My First Attempt: I followed the directions and, after showering and exfoliating, I rubbed the towelette all over my body (starting at my feet) and up. My husband helped me get my back. It was very fast and easy and the product dried quickly and there was pretty much zero odor.

The next morning, I had a nice, natural-looking glow, but I did notice a few things that I’ll share with you as well as how I corrected them for my next application.

  • The product will go on the darkest wherever you start with the towel. My legs turned out darker than my upper body.  My feet also turned out a little orange-y because the towelette is so saturated when you first start to use it.
  • The towelette barely does my entire body and at $6 a pop, I really didn’t want to open up another one.

Here’s how my arm looked 2.5 hours after I applied it.  It’s subtle, but I noticed a definite difference.


My Second Attempt: The color was holding beautifully, but I had a wedding coming up and wanted a little more color. Plus, I wanted to try out my new application idea—using rubber gloves. So again, I showered, lightly exfoliated and dried off and then applied the product again. Only this time I was wearing rubber gloves and used my gloved hands to rub the product into my skin instead of the towelette. The towelette lasted longer and my product application came out much more evenly over my entire body.

Things I loved about this product:

It’s really easy to apply. I used it twice in one week—once on a Monday and again on a Thursday. The color was holding nicely, so I would have been okay with just one application for the week, but I thought I’d see what an extra application would get me. It gave me a nice, slightly darker tan.

It dries really quickly. Just to be safe, I wore loose-fitting, dark clothes for the rest of the evening to ensure that there was no color transfer.

The resulting color from one application is very nice and natural, but it definitely gives a nice glow. The second application just deepened the color slightly.

Things I didn’t love:

The price per towelette is $6 each and you can only buy 8 at a time (that’s $48!), which can seem a bit pricey compared to other home tanning products. However, if you compare it to a spray tan at $25+ a pop, you’re definitely coming out ahead both time-wise and money-wise

The towelette will just barely do my entire body. I think once I become a little more adept with the product, this will be easier. Using gloved hands to rub the product in versus using just the towelette really helped.  I highly recommend this application technique.

The only option to fix the spots I missed is using a different product, or opening a $6 towelette and either ending up way too tan, or wasting the towelette.

In Summary:

I would purchase these again. The resulting glow I achieved from using it was very natural, and lasts well. I also really liked how quickly and easily it was to apply.  As a mom with limited time for beauty treatments, this is a winning product for me.

How to De-clutter the Top of Your Refrigerator

In our current home, we don’t have a lot of pantry space. And, the pantry space that remains is within reach of my toddler. So either I lock the Cheerios up, or store them out of his reach on top of the fridge. I hated the look of all of these cereal boxes and bags of chips sitting on top of my fridge—what was I going to do?


Here’s what I did:


I went to Target.


I bought two cute storage bins.  (You can find similar ones here and here.)


I put all of my cereal boxes and chip bags into them.




An uncluttered refrigerator top.

As a bonus, I’m not staring at bags of cookies and chips all day and tempted to eat them. I often forget they’re there until I’m feeding my son.

I’m sorry if you thought this post might be a teense more involved, but I hope you found this post both amusing and helpful 🙂

And, my husband and I have been staring at the “itsey bitsey” spider on our fridge trying to figure out what was wrong with it since our son brought it home from school.  It’s supposed to be “itsy bitsy”.  Oh well, it’s still stinking cute.

I Tried It: Sunless Tanning. Jergens Natural Glow Foaming Daily Moisturizer

From Jergens Natural Glow Foaming Daily Moisturizer creates a color that’s gradual, flawless and captivating. You’ll experience natural-looking color that’s streak-free, hassle-free and with Jergen’s break-through patent-pending technology, now has no sunless tanner odor. The quick-drying foam with Jergens Natural Glow Foaming Daily Moisturizing you’ll see, feel and experience natural-looking color that is the very essence of your beauty.”


Since I have an almost two year old, and I’m 15 months pregnant (not really, but some days it feels like that), laying out in the hot sun isn’t recommended for anyone–much less pregnant ladies, and it’s October and there’s no more hot sun, I decided to use some sunless tanner.

First, what I really liked about the product:

There is an odor, but it’s not nearly as strong as the odor with their regular tanning lotion. An hour or so after it dried, I didn’t notice any significant smell from using the product.

It’s very easy to apply. I started from the bottom and worked my way up. The foam blended easily and I didn’t have any streaking or orangey-ness. (I just made that word up.)   Just watch out for dry patches of skin. Those spots will absorb more product and darken in an odd way.  (Hello left knee!)

It dries very quickly! I probably spent less than 5 minutes applying it and a couple of minutes to dry. That time commitment works for me.

Thing that I didn’t love:

It takes several applications to build up a good base color. However, this product is so easy to apply, and basically goof-proof–I really didn’t mind that.

In Conclusion . . .

If you’ve got a few days before you want to look your glowiest and most fabulously tan, this is a great option.  The price point is relatively low, it’s really hard to mess up applying it, and it dries quickly with minimal odor.  I’d purchase and use it again.

Freezer Cooking Before Baby – Meal Elements

This is my third post on freezer cooking before Baby K #2 arrives.  You can read about what I have baked here, and the meals I’ve already prepared here.  In this post, I’ll share with you some “meal elements” I’ve prepped and frozen for simple meal prep after this next child invades blesses our lives.

Sloppy Joe Meat – I went ahead and precooked the meat and mixed my Manwich into it. After the mixture cooled, I divided the 2 pounds of sloppy joe mix into smaller containers for dinners and lunches later.

Pizza Dough – I regularly make pizza dough in my bread machine. I always use half right away and freeze the other half. It doesn’t rise as well after it’s been frozen, but covered in toppings, cheese and sauce, you really don’t notice much of a difference.

Frozen, Cooked Chicken Breasts and Thighs – I seasoned and cooked about four pounds of chicken breasts a while back. The other night I pulled out one with Mexican seasoning on it; heated it and chopped it up for some chicken nachos. It was fantastic.

Cooked Ground Beef – I found this recommendation on-line and cooked up a few extra pounds of ground beef I had in the refrigerator. I’m envisioning quick tacos or just beefing up a jar of store bough pasta sauce for an easy dinner.

Pre-formed burger patties – This was a super idea! I took 2 pounds of lean ground beef, added all of my burger meat ingredients (chopped onion, garlic Worchestershire, A-1, ketchup, etc), formed them into patties and separated them with parchment paper. I tested them the other night by tossing some of my frozen patties onto my George Foreman for a quick and easy burger dinner the other night. Are they just as good as freshly-made burger patties? Meh . . . maybe not. But I’m not hand-making my own burger patties after this baby arrives and I really like knowing what’s in my burger.

I’ve got a few weeks until this baby gets here–what else would you add??


Freezer Cooking Before Baby – Meals

The last thing I will want to mess with once baby #2 arrives is cooking. Ordinarily I love to cook—coming up with new ideas for dinner or rocking out our old favorites is one of my favorite things to do. However, with a newborn and a two-year old and recovering from a c-section, I think I’m going to want to just chill out for a month or two.

However, my family still has to eat. Families are sneaky like that. Even when you’re tired, they still want to eat—toddlers especially.

So, I’ve filled my freezer with homemade “heat and eat” options for breakfast, lunch dinner and snacks.

Heat and Eat Dinners

Mac & Cheese – I used a wonderful recipe from Cooking Light—it’s truffle mac & cheese and it’s amazing. One double batch made 3 8×8 pans that provided 10 servings for us. I would recommend not cooking the pasta completely (you’ll have reheated mush if you do that) and use slightly less pasta so that it doesn’t dry out when you reheat it.

Enchiladas – I found a great recipe in Cooking Light magazine that makes two pans of enchiladas. I thought the step of preparing the chicken to be a bit cumbersome. When I make these again, I’ll probably use a homemade or store-bought whole chicken and simply shred it. My husband and I enjoyed this recipe straight from the oven the day I made it, and frozen and reheated. Both times it was delicious—possibly more delicious the second time because there was so little work involved.

I also made a double batch of these enchiladas as well. The homemade enchilada sauce is really tasty (IMHO). I ended up with four 8×8 pans of enchiladas.

Lasagna Roll-Ups – I found this recipe on the Pioneer Woman’s blog.  The prep time says 15 minutes. That is a COMPLETE AND TOTAL LIE. Budget at least an hour to put these buddies together. I also found that when I cooked them starting from a frozen state that I needed more cook time—probably an hour covered and 15 uncovered plus broiling time to get that nice, bubbly cheese. Despite those two challenges, they are delicious and one batch of this recipe makes 5 dinners for two adults.

Breakfast Burritos – These are not a low-calorie option, but are delicious.  I made large batches of these to freeze. First, I scrambled 18 eggs and cooked a pound of sausage. After mixing it all together, I took large burrito shells and filled them with the eggs, sausage and a small amount of cheese and wrap them up. After they were all wrapped up, I sprayed them with cooking spray and lightly fried them in a frying pan.  After letting them cool completely, I wrapped them in parchment paper and put them in a freezer bag.

Regular Burritos – Get creative with these! I stuffed mine with refried beans, seasoned taco meat, onions, and peppers. After sautéing all of the veggies on the stove, I filled the burritos with my selected items along with some cheese and use the same frying method for the breakfast burritos. Since I used large burrito shells, these are also not a low-calorie option, but I know we’ll enjoy them after the baby arrives.

Sunday Stew – This is a recipe I pulled from the Pioneer Woman website. The resulting stew is both savory and sweet. My husband was a huge fan of it, so I prepped a double batch for the freezer. I read the recipe incorrectly the first time I made this and used parsnips instead of turnips. The parsnips are pretty tasty if you’re not a fan of turnips.

Steak Chili – This recipe from 100 Days of Real Food is delicious. Most chili recipes I’ve seen use ground beef, so using stew meat is a nice change. It cooks in the slow cooker, so the meat ends up very tender and it’s a very low maintenance recipe.

Quesadillas – Get creative with this idea! I filled mine with what I had on hand, which was seasoned chicken, some cumin and cheese. After assembling them, I lightly fried them on my electric skillet. After they cooled, I separated them with parchment paper and stacked them in freezer bags. I’m having a hard time keeping my husband out of this stash.

Spicy Dr. Pepper Shredded Pork – This is also from the Pioneer Woman website.  When I made this, I ended up using a couple of pounds of pork tenderloin I had on hand instead of pork butt.  It ended up very tender with a nice flavor–and quite a kick!  The next time I make it, I’ll probably use a smaller amount of Chipotle peppers, but it is probably the tastiest pulled pork I’ve made at home.

What do you like to cook and freeze?  Any successes or disasters you’d care to share?  Leave me a comment! 🙂

Things that Make my Life Run a Little More Smoothly

1 – I get up before my child. Sometimes it’s only five minutes, other days it’s an hour, but that quiet time before I go and get him from his room is so helpful. I brush my teeth, make the bed and just enjoy some peace and quiet before the wild rumpus gets going.

2 – I clean pretty much every day. My house is never 100% clean, but it’s also never 100% dirty. I vacuum several days a week, dust on other days, and do bathrooms on yet another day. I’ve found that this system keeps my home from ever looking grungy, and when I am cleaning I don’t have to think too hard about it because I’m not swiping away at 3 weeks worth of dust or a week’s worth of Cheerio and pretzel crumbs.

3 – I spend 20 minutes or so each night picking up and putting away clutter. People who know me wouldn’t guess it, but I’m a big clutterbug—I think that’s one of the occupational hazards of being a mom. I get interrupted in the middle of so many things and often I don’t get back to them until later in the day—sometimes after my son goes to bed. Taking the time to pick up out of place items and put them in their place is a great way to make sure the next day gets started on the right foot. I also pick up and organize my kid’s toys every night. Now, “organizing” those toys might mean picking them up off of the floor and tossing them into a bin, but his play area gets tidied up every single night. De-cluttering our home only takes 15-20 minutes, and I feel so much better once the clutter is gone.

4 – I do laundry 3-4 days a week, and often start it at night before I go to bed. I HATE folding laundry. It’s drudgery. To keep the drudgery from being so drudge-y, I do smaller and more frequent loads. I also will often start a load at night and move it to the dryer in the morning. Somehow that feels like housework that does itself.

5 – I buy all of my groceries on-line. This requires some planning. I usually outline what meals I’d like to make for the week and then purchase the ingredients I need for those recipes as well as pantry staples like flour, milk, etc. Here in Asheville, I use Harris Teeter. I sit down (often after my child has gone to bed and my husband and I are watching TV) and spend about 20 minutes filling up my on-line cart and then I schedule a time to pick up the groceries at the store. And get this—I don’t even have to get out of the car to pick them up!! I roll up to the drive through (with my son in the car) and they bring everything out to me. This has made my life 1,000 times easier. There’s no more impulse buys while wandering the aisles, and I never have to open something (and subsequently purchase it) for my little one to eat while we shop.

6 – I do a lot of things at night. This is includes packing lunches, showering and picking out my clothes for the next day. My son attends a morning program a few days a week that runs from 8am – 12pm. I’m required to send both a snack and a lunch for him. I’ve found that our mornings run much more smoothly if I can prepare and pack both his snack and lunch the night before. If I choose to shower at home instead of the gym, I always shower at night after my son goes to bed. I also pick out my outfit for the following day. Again, all of these things make my mornings run much more smoothly.

7 – I put almost everything in the dishwasher. I do a lot of things myself, and I love being a “homemaker”. However, I don’t want to spend time washing dishes.  I really, truly suck at it and I don’t want to worry about whether or not I got all of the food off of a plate or a glass. So, just about every dish, cup or utensil goes into the dishwasher. I do hand wash our knives, pots and a few other things, but outside of that—IT GOES IN THE DISHWASHER! If something doesn’t survive the dishwasher, it wasn’t meant for our home.  RIP.  I also don’t bother emptying the counter dish rack until everything has air-dried on it’s own and I feel like doing it.  HA.

8 – I still use a day planner. Even though I’m no longer scheduling work meetings or lots of appointments, having a paper calendar and a daily “to do” list is really helpful to me.  Fewer things slip through the cracks.

9 – I skip any of these tasks as needed! 🙂  Sometimes it’s just not happening. While all of these things make my life easier, I also give myself permission to skip any of the above items. It doesn’t happen often, but it’s fun every once in a while.

Freezer Cooking Before Baby – What I’m Baking

The last thing I will want to mess with once baby #2 arrives is cooking. Ordinarily I love to cook—coming up with new ideas for dinner or rocking out our old favorites is one of my favorite things to do. However, with a newborn and a two-year old and recovering from a c-section, I think I’m going to want to just chill out for a month or two.  I’m already planning on wearing sweatpants until January.

However, my family still has to eat. Families are sneaky like that. Even when you’re tired, they still want to eat—toddlers especially.

So, over the next 6-8 weeks I’m going to be stockpiling my freezer with homemade “heat and eat” options for breakfast, lunch dinner and snacks.

Here’s a selection of the breads/sweets I’ll be baking and freezing before the baby arrives.  I’ve provided links to where I found the recipe (when available).

Apple Muffins – I use a fantastic recipe from Chocolate Covered Katie’s cookbook. ( They’re vegan and only about 120 calories per muffin. I’ve been making and freezing these for months and they reheat beautifully.

Bran Muffins – Again, my recipe comes from Chocolate Covered Katie’s cookbook. These are also vegan and only 100 or so calories per muffin. My son and I both love them.

Carrot and Applesauce Muffins – I pulled this recipe from the 100 Days of Real Food website. Again, it’s a solid muffin recipe. They come out moist and flavorful and reheat well.

English Muffins Yep, I’m that snobby home-cooker who makes her own English Muffins. This bread machine recipe does most of the heavy lifting though. All I do it roll the dough out, cut it and lightly pan-fry them. (I spray a little Pam on either side to prevent burning.)  I do not use an empty tuna can to cut them–gross.

Loaves of Bread – I bake my own bread. Sometimes I use my bread machine and other times I make it myself using this recipe. However, I do modify it slightly. The recipe calls for 1 ¾ Tbs of yeast and using 3 measuring spoons for my yeast is just too much to ask so I do 1 Tbs and 2 tsp on yeast. I also add an extra ounce or so of flour to the recipe because it is very sticky. I  highly, strongly, recommend that you weigh your flour. You will get more consistent and better results if you do that. I do 4 oz per cup.  You might need something different based on your climate.

Cinnamon Buns – I use my bread machine to make the dough, which makes the entire process of making them A LOT simpler. I’ve experimented with freezing the rolls before their final rise, partially baking them and baking them completely and then freezing them. I achieved the best results freezing fully-baked cinnamon rolls. The only downside to doing this is the space that they take up in the freezer. They are delicious and taste almost as amazing as when they first come out of the oven.

Mini Waffles – My darling toddler really likes waffles. I purchased a mini-waffle maker a few months back and will make large batches of mini-waffles in one sitting. They freeze and reheat well and are great for a quick breakfast for him in the morning. (I use a modified squeeze bottle to dispense batter to reduce the mess.)  Sometimes I make my own batter c/o Polly Clingerman’s The Kitchen Companion, and other times I use boxed mix.  It really depends on the time I have and what ingredients I have on hand.

Mini Pancakes – Again, I will either make my batter from scratch or use a box of mix to make a giant batch of mini pancakes. These also freeze and reheat well and are great for toddler breakfasts (or mommy breakfasts when you want something sweet).

Banana Bread – This recipe contains both chocolate and peanut butter, so it’s not your mother’s banana bread, but it is AMAZING.  I had to cook mine for a few extra minutes, but it’s worth it!  This is another winning recipe from Chocolate Covered Katie.  The last time I made it, I made muffins instead of a loaf.

Pumpkin Bread – I have an amazing recipe for pumpkin bread, but it includes a ton of oil and sugar. I’m not going to worry too much about counting calories after the baby arrives, but I want to be healthy. I found a nice recipe on the 100 Days of Real Food website. It’s lower in sugar, uses whole wheat flour and definitely tastes healthier—haha. However, it’s a solid recipe I’ll probably put a few loaves on ice for post-baby snacking.

No-Bake Peanut Butter Pie – This is another gem from Chocolate Covered Katie.  I whip this up in the Vitamix and dump it into a pre-made graham or Oreo crust.

Lactation Cookies  – Will I need these?  Who knows.  However, they are cookies, and there’s nothing wrong with cookies.  The Brewers Yeast in this recipe gives the cookies a bit of a “beerish” flavor, but I didn’t mind it.  I’ve got a batch of these sitting in the freezer for after the baby’s arrival.  I might whip up a second one, but cut a tablespoon of yeast from the recipe.

Julia Child’s Brownie Recipe – Holy sh*t.  These brownies are amazing.  Not healthy at all, but amazing.  This recipe from the Naptime Chef is easy to follow, and the resulting brownies freeze really well.  They heat up well and are also quite tasty right out of the freezer.  (Perhaps I’ve been digging into one of the batches I’m supposed to be saving . . . )

What pre-baby or pre-holiday baking are you working on?  What would you add to this list?



Honest Company Products – A Review – Part 2

This is the second installment of my thoughts on Honest Company products.  These are the products I’ve bought and tried for myself.


Shave Oil: In lieu of a shaving cream, you apply this oil to your skin and shave as usual. I love this idea in theory, but in reality it was a bit tedious. I had to stop every few strokes to clean out the razor blades. I am using the remaining product to moisturize in the shower (Which is great!) The smell is a bit earthy for me, but it does a nice job moisturizing my skin. Also, rubbing it onto my skin while still in the shower leaves my skin very soft without being too greasy or heavy.

Healing Balm: I love this stuff! I use it on my son as well. In a pinch, it keeps my cuticles looking fresh. (This balm can make a very old pedicure look much cleaner and less raggedy when you don’t have time get one.) It’s great for healing any really dry skin you’re dealing with. I’ll also rub this on my (ever growing) pregnant belly to keep the itchiness away. This in one product I will keep buying because it’s so effective and versatile.

Organic Body Oil: I also love this product, and use it in the shower daily. After I’ve lathered and rinsed, I step out of the spray of the shower and rub it into my skin and then rinse a bit. It keeps my skin super soft, without being too heavy, and it’s really quick. I can towel off and get dressed immediately. (Keep in mind, a little goes a long way. You don’t need to apply this like lotion. About 4-5 pumps will generously cover my entire body.)

Belly Balm: I also use this in the shower. It helps me get a nice, smooth application, and I don’t use too much.  While I don’t love the smell,  it’s very thick and feels great on my pregnant belly. I don’t have any itchy belly skin on that I use this.

Hand Sanitizer: I’m not much of a hand sanitizer user. However, I keep this in my diaper bag.   In a pinch, when hand washing wasn’t an option,  I’ve used it on both my hands and my son’s hands after touching something especially germy-looking. It’s got a nice, light smell, and as far as hand sanitizers go, it’s fairly pleasant.