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Monday, September 15, 2014

One Pot Spaghetti

One Pot Spaghetti
One thing I hate about cooking is the clean up afterwards. I hate having so many dishes to clean, so this spaghetti recipe that only requires ONE POT was right up my alley! It was quick and so easy which is exactly what I need right now with a newborn. 

I found this recipe on Pinterest during a 2am feeding session and had to try it out. 

INGREDIENTS:
-1 lb ground Italian sausage
-3/4  lb uncooked spaghetti
-1 can (28 oz.) crushed tomatoes with basil, un drained
-1 box (32 oz) chicken broth or vegetable broth *I used chicken broth*
-1/2 cup whipping cream
-1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes 
-shredded Parmesan cheese

STEPS:
In an 8-quart pot cook the sausage until no longer pink, then drain.

Add spaghetti, tomatoes, broth, cream & pepper flakes. Heat until it's boiling and let it boil for 15-20 minutes turning pasta frequently with tongs until the pasta is cooked and the sauce is thick and creamy. 

Top with Parmesan cheese. Enjoy!

I typically don't like sausage, but I loved it in this spaghetti recipe. 
I asked Spencer what he thought of it on a scale of 1 to 5. One being he didn't want it again and 5 being he loved it and he gave it a 5.

SUCCESS! 

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Comfort

This morning Mack and I woke up routinely for me to feed him. Afterwards he laid on my chest for a few minutes before I went to put him in his crib to sleep. He was fed, had a clean diaper on, had been burped and was already smothered with at least 50 kisses already.. But he was crying and crying. I tried to rock him and sing to him.. I turned his noise maker up just a little bit higher with no success in calming him down. I gave him his favorite pacifier and he wanted nothing to do with it. Feeling like I was running out of options I set him back in his crib with him wrapped up tight in his swaddle and left the room to let him cry. This is not unusual for me to do for his morning nap as I'm trying to get him to learn to self soothe a little bit better since I feel that's vital with me going back to work sooner than I would like. Typically I set him down all swaddled up tight and go to get ready for the day. He's usually fast asleep before I can even make it though doing my makeup but today was different. I was ready for the day with my makeup done, teeth brushed, hair fixed and still had a long list of things I wanted to accomplish around the house.. But the desperate cries I heard from the nursery were pulling at my heart strings as I thought "he just wants to be comforted." I walked to his crib and almost immediately his cries calmed just a little bit. I picked him up, held him close to me and started rocking him back and forth. He instantly fell asleep and looked so peaceful. All he wanted was to be comforted. 

This got me thinking about my own life and I thought of the scripture that says "I will not leave you comfortless, I will come to you." It's incredible to me looking back over the last 6 weeks I've had Mack, and how many times I've felt like I was failing, I have felt so inadequate, and have occasionally just felt like crying for reaching the end of my rope. And EVERY TIME I've suddenly felt calm and powered through. I would love to take the credit for just merely realizing I'm doing an okay job, I'm succeeding and my energy is self renewed, but I completely know that's not true. Having small bits of faith in myself have helped I'm sure, but ultimately I can look back and give 100% credit to The Lord for never, not once leaving me comfortless. I often take blessings for granted and fall asleep at night without expressing my gratitude. I owe my days to Him and as I write this I have the most perfect bundle in my arms as a reminder that I am never left comfortless.. That I am blessed beyond what I deserve and I can only comprehend how much I am loved by Him through the love I have as a mother. 

"I will not leave you comfortless: I will come to you."


Monday, September 8, 2014

Fall Trends

Usually I don't love the transition from Summer to Fall because Utah's Falls just aren't long enough. Before I know it I'm outside shoveling snow off my car and if you know me at all you know how much I hate being cold so me and snow don't mix well.

If you read my post last week I'm having an even harder time with this Fall coming because I'm so not ready to go back to work, leaving Mackson without a mama all day.Thankfully, I do actually have something to look forward to with cooler weather just around the corner. Fall Fashions. Maybe this Fall is different because my summer clothes just don't fit the same right now post-baby. I'm ready for comfy sweaters and flannel button ups. 

A few things that have been on my WANT list lately:

-A deep V neck loose white tee
-Steve Madden Leopard slip on shoes
-Some great statement jewelry
-Bold black sunnies
-Floppy hats {not sure I'm brave enough to attempt wearing these yet}
-Black Flats- they go with Everything!
-Anything with leather or leather accents. This tee with leather sleeves is a must-have!

Scroll through the pictures below to see some of my top picks for Fall!
{you can also click the photos for a direct link to each item}

XOXO

Friday, September 5, 2014

The Easiest Banana Bread

I always buy bananas at the store thinking they will be such a great healthy on-the-go snack. Or perfect in my cereal. Or delicious in a smoothie. 
...and it never happens.. they always go bad. 


This time I decided to make banana bread, but I needed a recipe that was quick and super easy that I could make while baby was napping. 

*Bonus: You don't need a mixer!*

QUICK & EASY BANANA BREAD
Ingredients: 
-3 or 4 ripe bananas (I used 4)
-1/3 cup melted butter
-1 cup sugar 
-1 egg beaten
-1 tsp vanilla
-1 teaspoon baking soda
-pinch of salt
-1 1/2 cups of all-purpose flour

Directions:
*preheat oven to 350 degrees*

-Mash your bananas in a large mixing bowl, then Mix the butter into the mashed bananas


-Mix in the sugar egg & vanilla


-Sprinkle baking soda and salt over the mixture & mix it in.

-Add the flour last & mix together.

-Pour into a buttered 4x8 inch loaf pan.

-Bake for 1 hour. 


We thought this recipe was so good, I got another bunch of bananas just to let them ripen up to make another loaf! It was super sweet which we loved. The sugar could probably be reduced to 3/4 cup if you don't want it so sweet. 

Enjoy!
XOXOX

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Baby Mackson {1 month}

Baby Mackson 
{1.month.old}

I can't believe my tiny baby is already 1 month old.. it gives me a mini heart attack to think how fast time is going by. I feel like I will be back at work before I know it.. but for now I'm just enjoying my time home with tiny toes. 

Mack wakes up soo smiley. 
He hears me say "hiii babbyy" and I get a big gummy smile in response. 

He hates baths but loves having his hair washed.

He loves looking out the windows and is fascinated with windows with blinds on them.

He is growing like a weed and has long legs that he likes to kick.

He has been able to hold his head up since he came out of the womb (literally) he's a tough little dude.

He's got a great set of lungs on him and likes to show them off right around bed time.

He sleeps like a champ at night and goes right back to bed after he eats. Last night he slept 5 1/2 hours which was a nice treat. 

He loves laying on mom for naps and likes it when dad walks up and down the stairs while holding him. 

He loves car rides and loves his stroller- this makes him a great partner for outings!



this bundle of joy makes me so incredibly happy we love him so much!

Monday, September 1, 2014

Feeling Sentimental

Last night after Mackson and Spencer were both in bed I laid awake at midnight and was feeling so sentimental. August was the most eventful, wild month of my entire life. I've never experienced so many ups and downs as I did over the course of the last month. 

From having my membranes stripped, to welcoming baby into this big overwhelming world, long sleepy days, and short nights, figuring out breastfeeding, hundreds and hundreds of feedings, a circumcision gone wrong, 4 trips to the ER, one long night at Primary Children's Hospital, a rough battle with Mastitis, being patient with a post-baby body, having problems with my stitches, hearing from the dr that my abdomen wall tore, healing from a level 3 tear, getting a horrible post-pregnancy rash, sending Spencer out of town for work.... The list goes on and on of the many eventful things that August brought. Despite all of the craziness, I didn't want August to end. 

Last night it took almost 2 hours to calm down Mack. 2 hours of screaming and crying and the saddest little face that's enough to melt your heart. Spencer held him, rocked him, walked the halls with him and nothing was working. I finally took Mack and started walking down the hall as we made eye contact and for a minute he stopped crying. He was quiet for the first time in hours and just grinned his big gummy smile like he trusted me and things would be okay. 

I've never been so drained, so exhausted, so discouraged and so tested as I have the last month. But I've also never been more proud, so happy, so encouraged, and I've certainly never felt a stronger love for another human being. 

As I'm having a hard time letting go of August, Today I'm taking a deep breath and welcoming September. It means I'm one month closer to going back to work but I'll be welcoming lots of new adventures, a crazy schedule with Spencer in school, I'll have a month old baby and I'll be wondering where the time goes. I don't feel ready for September but I guess I don't really have much of a choice.

September, please be good to me. 

Saturday, August 23, 2014

Mackson's Birth Story

 Well, I can officially say I've missed the blogging world for the last few weeks. To say I've been busy with a baby is true, but the fact is we haven't had Internet at our place so blogging has been nearly impossible. I'm loving motherhood and I can't believe I have a THREE WEEK old baby! I've been excited to share Mackson's Birth Story with y'all!

My due date was July 28th and baby still hadn't come. I treated myself to having my hair done and bought a Solly Wrap (LOVE IT!) My 25th birthday was the 31st and I was glad baby didn't come on that day because I'm totally against sharing a birthday. August 1st I had an appointment with my midwife to have my membranes stripped. Which was pretty painful and she told me bleeding/cramping were totally normal- I was having both when I left the office. I had been dilated to a 1 for pretty much all of July, and left her office at a full 3 after having my membranes stripped.

Most of the evening I was cramping and it was gradually getting worse. I walked around the block a few times to get my mind off of the period-like cramps I've enjoyed NOT having for the last 10 months. I forgot how painful those suckers are. I started feeling really weird pressure in my bum and went to get in the bath hoping that would help the pain. I felt SO EXHAUSTED and went to bed around 8:30pm and woke up at 11pm with the worst cramps so I got in the bath for a second time. I was tossing and turning in bed so I went to our guest bedroom so I didn't wake up Spencer. That's when I realized my cramps were coming and going- and I started timing them. They were lasting a full minute, and they were exactly 5 minutes apart. I was in full on labor and didn't realize it. My midwife had told me to labor at home for about an hour so I got up and had to walk the hall up and down to keep my mind off the pain. They were slowly getting stronger and stronger. I didn't know what to do so I put my makeup on just in case we left for the hospital. An hour and 20 minutes later I woke up Spencer and told him we needed to go. By this time I couldn't walk or talk through my contractions so I asked Spencer to give me a blessing and we loaded up the car to go. 

We arrived at the University of Utah Hospital and got checked in around 2:30am and was at a 5 when they checked me. They had me in a room by 3:00am. My mom and Suzie Bishop our birth photographer showed up shortly after and I almost cried when Jessica my Midwife walked into my room I was so relieved to see her. My contractions were closer and closer together and they were much stronger. Jessica didn't leave my side and helped me through each contraction. I was feelin' good when she checked the monitors and told me I was having the strongest contractions on the floor and I was the only one without an epidural. I was ready for the anesthesiologist to come in anytime and got the epidural right in the middle of a contraction. It was immediate relief. They checked me again and I was an an 8 and things were moving along quickly. My midwife wanted me to rest for a while so everyone left to go grab food as I dozed off. I was sleeping when I felt baby kick, and heard a sound just like a water balloon popping. My water broke! I called Spencer and everyone came back up to my room. Around 8:45am they started prepping everything so I could start pushing which gave me a pretty good anxiety rush. I couldn't believe this was real life. 

My mom left the room and I started pushing at 9:00am. They would say "TWO PUSHES" And I would ask if I could do 3 or 4. I was feeling so good and I'm the weirdo that enjoyed laboring. Spencer was by my side and kept making sure I was drinking water and the nurses were so encouraging. We would laugh and joke in between contractions and I was getting so excited. They immediately told me to stop pushing and she took my temperature. They discovered my blood pressure was going up and so was baby's- I had correo infection and it was passing to baby Mack. They put an antibiotic in my IV line and told me they would probably need to take Mack to the Nursery as soon as possible. I wanted to delay cord clamping and do chest to chest with baby and they told me we wouldn't be able to do that, which was fine as long as Baby was taken care of. I could start pushing again. 

The Nurses said "THAT'S IT, THAT'S IT" and I knew they could see him. They told me he had lots of hair and I started crying. It had been 9 months of me feeling baby grow, watching my belly grow, feeling him kick, and the fact that the nurse could actually see him made this all so real. Spencer pulled out his phone and put on  the song "Here comes the Sun" and thought it was SO funny. The nurses totally got a kick out of it and he was pretty pleased. The nurses were all standing by as pediatrics came in and got ready to take baby. The nurses all got suited up and put gloves on and told me to do two more big pushes and I felt baby come out! Immediate pressure relief and at 10:05am THERE WAS MY BABY!! Seeing your baby for the first time is something I can't describe. It's so incredible. 

They quickly put Mack on my chest to warm him up and get him crying before they handed him off to pediatrics to immediately get an IV line for antibiotics and blood tests done since I had correo. Correo is where the small amount of amniotic fluid that I shared with  Mack was somehow infected, you don't know you have it until you start labor, and my temperature was gone- along with the correo as soon as baby came out. I sent Suzie and Spencer to the Nursery with Mack and my mom came in to keep me company. I had a level 3 tear that was pretty awful- they said they've never seen it happen to anyone before and the chances of me tearing the way I did are extremely rare. I'll spare you the dirty details. They had to bring an OR Doctor down to stitch me up which took about 2 hours. They were also concerned about my blood loss and started measuring everything to make sure I wasn't hemorrhaging. I did hemorrhage unfortunately and was feeling pretty weak the rest of the night. 

I was wheeled to a room in the postpartum unit and they wheeled baby around the corner and I was so excited to finally be with him again! The rest of our hospital stay was a little hectic with my meds every 4-6 hours, they would come in and make me walk around and help me to the bathroom every 2 hours, try to help me feed Mack every 4 hours, and they would come in to flush Mack's IV about every 4 hours, and take him to the Nursery for antibiotics every 4 hours. All of which = no sleep. Spencer was drained but some sort of no-sleep-mom-super power kicked in for me. 

We had lots of visitors, I had a bit of a rough time in the hospital which is a whole separate post, and we finally got word Monday afternoon we could be released and Mack could come with us! They were worried they might have to keep him there another week. We packed up the car and headed home- the saying is true- there really is no place like home. 
And we started our life as a little family. 

Thanks to everyone for the encouraging texts, phone calls, visits,  and meals. 
We have an awesome support system and we are so lucky.
Here are some of the pics from Mack's Birth- thanks to Suzie Bishop Photography. 
These are such a treasure to me. 



































Baby Mackson born August 2nd 2014
10:05 am 
7 lbs 10 oz. 20 inches long

Welcome to the World Baby Mackson 
We love you so much!
XOXO