The Weekly List (7.15)

I told you in my last weekly list I thought I would be pregnant past my due date but I was wrong and I’m so glad I was. Our sweet baby boy was born on June 5th, one day before his due date, and the last 5 and a half weeks have been spent soaking up family time and getting used to having two kids under one 😮. That last part is still a little hard to believe. Its been nice to have my maternity leave fall over the summer allowing us to take lots of walks, hit the farmer’s market often and take our daughter to some of the places around town we’ve had on our bucket list.

Since I’m nursing and pumping, I have A LOT of time to surf the internet and catch up on my favorite blogs. These are some of my favorite finds from the last month: 

This whole wheat pancake mix recipe is perfect for our 9 month old’s breakfasts. Right now, mornings are the craziest times of our day, trying to get everyone fed in a reasonable time, so quick options are key.  (Btw, I’ve got a baby feeding update coming soon for the last few months). 

These sweet potato tator tots are on my to-make list and they would be a perfect side for these black bean burgers

These energy bites were absolute lifesavers during the first few weeks home when I was starving, exhausted and trying to settle into some semblance of a routine. One batch took about 5 minutes to mix up, 10 minutes to roll out and lasted around a week. 

Motherhood and pregnancy have me thinking a lot about what I put on my body, since I’m in close contact with my little ones’ sensitive skin often. I’ve been cleaning up my personal care routine, but its a slow, trial-and-error process to find natural products that really work. I loved BTHR’s guide on her favorite natural beauty products


Tell me, what good stuff have you found on the internet lately?!

The Weekly List (6.3)


Happy Friday!!! I’m really hoping this is my last day of work before baby arrives and I’m off for the next couple months. I’m due Monday but something tells me I’ll probably still be pregnant then… And then you’ll probably find me scouring the web for all the old wives tales regarding inducing labor.

But for now, here’s the interesting (non-labor related) things I’ve found on around the internet in the last two weeks:

I just found out KC has a Scandinavian restaurant, Klubb Krokstrom, that serves Scandinavian small plates and Scandinavian alcohols like aquavit, glogg and my favorite, mead. I’ll definitely be hitting it up before our big Norwegian family reunion this summer.

Since I’ll be having a baby in (hopefully) a few days, the recovery process has been on my mind more lately. I love The Fitnessista’s new Post Baby Bod site and especially this post about core training after baby and avoiding making things worse.

These corn fritters over black bean salad sound like a perfect light, veggie-heavy summer dinner.

I want to go strawberry picking then make up a batch of this strawberry applesauce for our 8 month old.

I make my own laundry detergent with this recipe but I’m almost out and thinking of trying these laundry bombs for a bit.

Since my last weekly list, I shared our garden plan for this year (and the mistakes I’ve already made) and starting our baby on solid foods.

Tell me, have you found anything good on the internets this week?? Share it in the comments!

Baby Eats: The Beginning (4-5 months)

Feeding baby is so much fun! I was excited to introduce K to solid food but I had no idea how much fun it would be for me. Once she got the hang of it and started getting excited about food, it has been a whole new adventure. I love watching her learn to feed herself (and often missing her mouth) and get animated when she sees me preparing something for her.

We got the go ahead to start feeding K solid food at her 4 month appointment. Her weight was good and she was showing interest in what we ate so our pediatrician suggested we start her on rice cereal. She’s always had bad spit-up and had to be on the added-rice formula, so I was really ready to try something she could keep down better.

The first few weeks she was fed solids once a day and after a few weeks, we moved on to twice a day, usually late morning and early evening. The first few cereals I mixed up were very thin and watery and I gradually added less water as she got the hang of it.

We started her on this organic rice cereal and stuck with that exclusively for about three weeks. It was hard for me not to move on to something else because I know how horribly bland those cereals are but those first few weeks are more about learning to eat than the actual food itself. Those first few weeks ended up with the vast majority of the food pushed back out by her little tongue and all over her face, but she got the hang of it fairly quickly and we moved on to other, much more exciting things.

earth's best organic cereals

Oatmeal and multi-grain cereal were next and shortly after she turned 5 months, we introduced single-ingredient purees. I’ve never subscribed to the idea that baby food should be bland, so I’ve been adding a little bit of cinnamon to her cereals from the start.

I had wanted to make my own baby food but found she was somewhat cautious with new flavors at first so I decided to stick with pouches while she was trying new things. I certainly didn’t want to end up with a big batch of something she was allergic to or despised. I ended up going with the Plum Organic pouches because they don’t have any added ingredients like some other organic pouches.

Foods introduced during these two months:

Rice cereal
Oatmeal cereal
Multigrain cereal

Organic applesauce (usually mixed with oatmeal)

plum organics purees

Sweet potato puree
Butternut squash puree (with cinnamon)
Sweet pea puree (with mint)
Mango puree
Peach puree

Her favorites: oatmeal, applesauce and sweet potatoes

Equipment: Munchkin soft spoons and suction bowls

What were your baby’s first foods? Their favorites?

2016 Garden Plan

Every garden season starts about the same… I have grand intentions and they mostly fall short. This year it was not for lack of trying though. I planted and replanted my seedlings and carefully babied them, but through a variety of factors (too many rainy/cloudy days in a row, forgetting to soak them down once or twice, etc), not a lot of them made it far enough to make it to the garden. Next year I’ll just be using a grow light and hoping for a much better outcome…

garden seed startingLike last year, I’m doing a combination of container plants and an in-ground garden. The husband dug me a 10×10 plot last year and I’m using it again this year. I found some things, like bell peppers, just don’t succeed in containers for me, so I’ve moved those to the actual garden this year.

Even though I got off to a slightly discouraging start, it was so fun to plan the garden this year thinking about what our daughter might eat in a few months. Hopefully we can keep up with it during the hot summer months so we can see her enjoy things we grew! She even helped plant some if it…


Here’s what I am growing this year:

Started from seed (indoors):

Bush tomatoes
Sugar baby watermelon

Started from seed outdoors:



Cherry tomatoes
Bell peppers
Anaheim chilies

garden planning

We also had about 15 volunteer cucumber plants pop up so I took advantage and moved a few to a row.


I also have my herb garden and potato bin.

garden potato bin

The potatoes grew so much, so fast. The idea was to plant a row of seed potatoes and then add more layers of dirt as they grow several layers of potatoes. They took off so fast, I’m not sure if we got the dirt in there fast enough!

I used my tiered herb garden for the third year in a row. I tried to cover and shelter it and see if anything would survive the winter but the only thing that did make it was mint. And that has gone nuts! I’m currently scouting out all the mint cocktail and mocktail recipes I can find.

tier herb garden

This container also contains:

Sage- regular and purple
Basil- regular and purple

My two containers of sage from last year made it through the winter and are thriving.

sage plants

And I planted two more containers of lavender. I have dreams of some day having enough to harvest and dry and have around the house. But that will take many more plants.

container lavender plant

And finally, I’m trying three new things this year, all in containers… Eucalyptus, stevia and strawberries.

eucalyptus and stevia container plants container strawberry plant


I want to know what you’re growing this year!

The Weekly List (5.20)

Happy Friday! Its been one long rainy week here in Kansas and I’m ready for a warm, sunny weekend! I did manage to get my garden in before all this rain and I’ll be sharing next week what I’ve planted and what I’ve already managed to kill…..


But in the meantime, here’s what I’m loving this week:

I just started reading Eat Dirt and learned I most definitely have leaky gut. Healing that will be one of my post-baby focuses. Even if you don’t think you have leaky gut, the book is fascinating and explores the idea that we have been trying to make things too clean and its hurting our health.

My basil always goes nuts and I can never keep up with it! I’m trying to use this recipe when I’ve got a good amount to not let it get away from me.

This post has great ideas for kid friendly, non-perishable snacks to pack when you’re out and about this summer. I’ll be using some of the ideas that would be appropriate for our then 10 month old on our road trip this summer.

These blackberry champagne cocktails sound delicious for this summer plus I can use some herbs from my herb garden. I’ll just be switching out the sugar for a different sweetener.

bitsy's brainfood crackers

I just tried these Bitsy’s Brainfood crackers in cheddar chia veggie and they are so good! The ingredient list is decent for a processed food and there is no added sugar! I didn’t think I’d like them because things with the words “chia” and “veggie” in the name don’t always say “delicious snack!” but I loved them. I’ll be keeping them on hand for snacking “emergencies”. From what I understand, they’re only available at Target. 

In case you missed it, I shared my thoughts on running during pregnancy earlier this week. 

Tell me what awesome things you’ve found on the internet (or off) this week!


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Running during pregnancy

I’m writing this as my pregnant running days are already long over. Its been 9 weeks since I’ve run. It makes me sad because I really miss it but I also know slowing down has absolutely been the right thing to do. Running was such a huge part of my life for the past year that it feels a little odd not to be doing it anymore. I ran up until 28 weeks when the numbness in my feet told me it was time to stop. Running might not be the best word for what I was doing at that point but at least I was still moving slightly faster than (some) people walk.


The hardest time running for me was definitely in the first trimester. I wasn’t feeling well at all and getting up the energy for any physical activity at all was difficult. I was also worried about pushing myself too hard and was likely a little too cautious.

Obviously all fitness decisions while pregnant should be made under the guidance of your doctor or midwife, but if you’re cleared to run, here are some things that helped me:

Immediately buy a larger size/more supportive sports bra– pain/growth is one of the first symptoms many pregnant women get, so investing in a few new sports bras will make running much more comfortable. This made a huge difference for me even at only 4 weeks. Trust me.

Carry water– I never carried water with me for my runs since they weren’t longer than 4 miles, but early pregnancy made me really thirsty, plus it gave me a sense of security in case I started to feel nauseous while out away from the house (I never did thankfully)

Plan quick loop routes that pass by the house or a bathroom– Even though baby wasn’t pushing on my bladder yet, I found I had to go more often in the first trimester than the second.

Give yourself some grace– Its easy to think you don’t need to slow down yet… after all, you aren’t even showing yet! But your body is going through a lot and you may not be feeling so hot. I had to remind myself that just getting out there and moving, no matter how slow I went, was the important thing to having a healthy baby and keeping me sane.

I found the middle of the second trimester to be my running sweet spot. My morning sickness had improved, I felt better in general and I wasn’t so heavy yet that I lost the feeling in my feet and hands. It was definitely a slow jog, but I liked that I could still get some good cardio in.

When do you know when to stop running? Obviously this is different for every woman and may be under the direction of her doctor, but for me I just reached a point where it didn’t feel feasible for me to jog anymore. My body didn’t want to anymore. I just knew I was at a point where walking was better.

Any other past or current pregnant runners out there? Past or current pregnant mamas, what were your favorite workouts?

The Weekly List (5.13)

I love reading Friday lists by other bloggers. I already follow too many blogs so its fun to discover other posts from blogs or articles I might not normally read. I often see things I’d like to share, but I’m not always the best about getting on Facebook or Twitter to share what I’ve found.

So I bring you The Weekly List: a collection of the best things I’ve found on the web, in real life and things I think are too awesome not to share! 


I have these DIY citronella torches on my to-do list. This will be a perfect use for all those wine bottles I plan to empty after baby arrives…

These bagels are everything. They’re made with sprouted grains which are easier to digest than traditional grains and keep me full longer than a regular bagel. Oh and they have 11 grams of protein and they’re delicious (even though they may not sound like it).

I’m loving all the baby food recipes on this site. The recipes aren’t your standard bland blended baby food and they have me inspired to be making more of K’s food on my own.

I’m starting to really miss my oils. I know there are some you can use during pregnancy but I have wanted to be really careful so with the exception of diffusing a few I know for sure are safe, I haven’t been using any in months. I’m excited to break into my stash again soon.

I’m considering making my own raw honey facewash. Sounds a little crazy putting food on your face, but honey is super healing, super moisturizing and anti-aging. 

In case you missed it, I posted earlier this week about the items that got me through pregnancy (so far).

Have a wonderful weekend! And let me know in the comments what fun and interesting things you’ve found on the internet this week!

My (mostly) natural pregnancy must-haves

Here I am at 36 weeks pregnant thinking it has gone fairly fast but also that it has lasted forever. Its hard now to remember how I felt before I got pregnant! I had no idea what to expect (do any of us do for the first pregnancy?!) and its definitely been an adventure along the way. Overall, I wouldn’t call it an easy pregnancy, but I know it could have been much worse. I dealt with bad morning sickness up until about 20 weeks and have struggled with bad sciatica and back pain for most of the time. I’ve tried to stick to natural products and minimal medications as I did before pregnancy, but hot fudge sundaes for dinner and the drive-thru have won out a few times too! These are the things I would consider my pregnancy must-haves:

pregnancy essentials

Blue Sky Organic Ginger Ale– I pretty much lived off this during the first trimester. This plus bagels, mac and cheese and mashed potatoes… In fact, I had so much ginger ale that it did not sound appetizing for a long time after I got past the morning sickness because I associated it with feeling nauseous… Most ginger ales don’t have any actual ginger so this one actually helped me feel a little better. It  has a little bit of that “ginger bite” and tastes real. 

Garden of Life Raw Prenatals– I wanted something as natural as possible with minimal fillers… that I could also get down. These are large but doable, and don’t taste nasty going down. My favorite part is they are made with food-based vitamins instead of synthetic vitamins. 

Barre3 Online Workouts– These have been my lifesaver allowing me to continue to workout throughout my pregnancy. They give me a good, challenging, yet low impact workout. After I stopped running around 28 weeks, I needed something to supplement walking that wouldn’t hurt my back. I already loved barre and found that Barre3 has a ton of online classes for $15 per month. It has helped immensely with my sciatica, balance and general aches and tightness. There are lots of workouts that don’t require any props and every class I’ve done can easily be modified for pregnancy. There’s always one instructor in the video doing an easier/modified option. I’m still going strong with 4 to 5 barre workouts a week and plan to use this post baby too because its awesome for lower body and core strengthening.


Acure Marula + Argan Rose Dry Oil Body Spray and Acure Moroccan Rose Oil -I’ve tried to be even more careful with my body products since I became pregnant but I also needed something effective to deal with my acne and dry skin for 10 months (seriously where is that glow I was promised?!). I use Dermologica cleanser to keep acne away and Acure Moroccan Argan oil for my moisturizer. I’ve been hearing so much about facial oils lately and they truly work. This one hydrates well without being too greasy. I put it on at night after washing my face so it has time to sink in. The dry oil spray is my go-to belly moisturizer. No stretch marks yet!! (I have no idea whether that can be attributed to the oil, but nobody likes a dry belly anyways!)

A foam roller, heating pad and frozen water bottle- Between sciatica, back pain, calf cramps and foot pain, I use at least one if these things every single day. The frozen water bottle is perfect for rolling my sore feet over and icing my tender back. The foam roller is great for loosening up my back after a workout or rolling out my calves. And the heating pad gets used on my middle back every single night to relax my muscles after leaning over the crib to soothe my daughter to sleep #stillnotsleeptrained….

I’ve still got 4 weeks left, so I want to know, what things got you through the end of your pregnancy??


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12 races in 12 months: October, November AND December

I’m finally bringing you the recap on the last three races of last year. At the beginning of 2015, I set the goal of running at least one 5k each month. I’m shocked that between my crazy schedule, a new baby and being pregnant, that I actually did it! One of the things that helped is that Kansas City has TONS of races to choose from almost every weekend. I ran some old favorites, some that have become favorites and some I’d never do again. But the year taught me that the hardest thing about running is usually getting out of bed. This

These last three races have something in common: I was pregnant for all of them. I have a post coming up talking about running through the first trimester, but I’ll talk a little about how that factored into each race now.


 safehome halloween 5k

For the October race, I did the SAFEHOME Halloween 5K. I was really nervous to run this because I’d been feeling really, really crummy all month long. I was 9 weeks pregnant at the time and had been dealing with awful nausea and vomiting since 5 weeks. Luckily, two nights before the race, I started on anti-nausea medication and was feeling much better. I had also been dealing with some lightheaded-ness here and there, so I was very careful not to push myself too hard. I gave myself permission from the beginning to walk the whole thing if I needed. I knew it was an accomplishment just to get up and get out there while I wasn’t feeling my best, but I also really wanted to run. I had gotten in a few runs in the previous month, but I’d been missing the feeling of running regularly. I was also excited that it was the first time my baby girl would be there for a race! It was raining a little, so she ended up sleeping in the car the whole time, but she and my husband were waiting for me at the finish. (She was still asleep… Obviously my accomplishment was unimpressive to her…)

The course itself was not my favorite. It ran around back streets where I saw lots of apartment complexes, office buildings and new construction. I ended up alternating walking and jogging pretty much equally. I realized at the end of the race, I probably had it in me to push a little harder, but I was so nervous about my first pregnant race. Having my daughter there at the finish made it so much more meaningful. I want to set a good example for her and inspire an active lifestyle, so I might as well start now, even though she won’t remember!


ward parkway thanksgiving day 5k

The November race was the traditional Ward Parkway Thanksgiving Day 5K with the family. This year we got the entire family in on the fun for the first time ever. Even though it drizzled a little, we were lucky that it was a warm day (unlike the past two years) and I didn’t have to worry about having my 2 month old out in that weather. I chose to walk this one, so I could push the baby in the stroller. I realized I much prefer running the races… three miles seems really long when you’re walking it! It was so fun to make it a family activity and I hope we can continue to do it every year. Only next year, I’ll be pushing a double stroller!


I finished the year off the same way I started it- with a indoor, underground run. Only this time I was 15 weeks pregnant… I wasn’t feeling up to running outside, even though I do usually enjoy running in the cold, so I was happy the Jingle Run was an option. I’m glad I chose this one, because it was pouring cold, cold rain all morning. My parents came along to watch my daughter so that I could actually run this one. I ran/walked this one as well, but felt a lot better than I did in October.

I learned my lesson from the January race and didn’t dress too warmly this time. It was such a treat to run inside and stay warm! The course was a double loop which helped me know how far I had to finish. My baby girl was wide awake by the time I finished and loved watching all the racers in their festive holiday getups.

So that completes a year of 5Ks. I would have loved to set a running goal for this year but I’m just not sure how training for something will fit in to recovery from childbirth and having two kids. I am looking forward to the day I can push both kids in the jogging stroller (because what every run needs is an extra 60 pounds to push, right?)


2016 Goals

Yep, the obligatory New Year’s goal post! Most bloggers have one, but for good reason. I believe sharing your goals/putting them on paper helps solidfy them and keep you accountable. I’ve shared before that I’m not a fan of big resolutions because when you try to hold yourself to perfection, you’re going to fall short and feel discouraged.  I prefer to set goals to focus on throughout the year.

I had one big goal for last year, well two, but one that I shared with y’all was to run 12 races in 2015. And I completed it! Which was a miracle because I was pregnant for four of them… I’m so glad I set that as a goal because it kept me running and pushing consistently throughout the year. I didn’t reach my internal goal of breaking 30 minutes in 5k because… pregnancy….

The other goal, the one I didn’t share publicly, was to start our family. It feels weird to call that a goal because its something we had no control over, but we sure were praying it would happen this year. We were so incredibly blessed to adopt our precious baby girl in September and found out (very) shortly later that I was pregnant. We now know baby #2 is a boy and we couldn’t be more excited to be parents to two! People are always warning me about how rough two kids under 1 will be, but I think it will be the best kind of crazy. Sure, it will be challenging at times, but all parenthood is and we consider ourselves so fortunate to be blessed with two kids in this short time.

So that brings me to 2016 goals:

First and foremost is to deliver a healthy baby. I’m due at the beginning of June so the first half of this year is focused on growing one healthy baby and raising one healthy baby and the second half will be focused on raising two healthy babies. Which brings me to my second goal…

Model healthy habits for my children

The husband and I have fallen off the clean eating wagon lately and have really struggled with getting back on. With everything that’s been going on we’ve been relying on convenience over anything else. (Plus me wanting all the carbs and sugar in the world during my first trimester….) With our daughter set to start on solid foods in less than a month (!!), we need to get back to more home cooking, more food prep in advance and more veggies. I don’t have grand illusions of feeding her only homemade from-scratch everything forever and ever but I do want to focus on having healthy, mostly homemade options readily available for her. And to model healthy habits for her myself. Once the weather gets better and the days get longer, I’m looking forward to getting out for regular walks with her again.

walking with baby

Get back into fitness after baby is born

I’ve surprisingly been doing well keeping up with a fitness routine between mandatory workouts at my job and doing barre online on the weekends. I hope to keep some level of fitness up as long as I can during pregnancy. It so helps me with my energy levels and sanity.

I’ve been keeping up with running jogging so far but I am really looking forward to going all out on a run after baby and really getting my sweat on. And I’m looking forward to wine. But that’s not fitness related 😉

Travel at least once

Its easy to just hole up at home when you have a baby, but since the husband and I have such a love of travel, we want to pass that on to our kids. We likely won’t be taking any big trips this year but I have a goal of doing at least one overnight with the kids. Just to get over that scary first-time-away-from-home-with-two-kids-oh-!;#@ feeling.

Stop by the blog more often and create more new recipes

I thought about leaving blogging behind these last few months, but its one of my favorite outlets. I got out of the recipe creation habit last year and I really miss it. I’m excited to work on some new healthy recipes including some baby friendly ones.

So what are you 2016 goals? Tell me!